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Candyce Martins breaks mares world record with MI’s Where’s The Party

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Candyce Martins competing with gelding Gold N Glory at Vesey Street (Photograph supplied)

Candyce Martins and Bermudian-owned mare MI’s Where’s the Party blazed their way to multiple records at Nappanee Raceway in Indiana at the weekend.

The pair led the field in the Free for All division in a blistering 1min 0.4sec to improve on the mares world record on a five-16th mile track, which they had set the previous weekend.

The time is the fastest posted by a mare at Nappanee Raceway and also tied the overall fastest time at the facility.

“It’s very exciting,” an elated Martins told The Royal Gazette. “The mare felt good and was strong from start to the finish.”

The record-breaking display exceeded the 20-year-old driver’s expectations.

“I was not expecting her to go that fast,” she added. “She had the three-hold so she had to go around the No 1 and 2 pony.

“It was a shock, but she was strong the whole race. She felt good and ran her own race.”

The five-year-old mare is owned by local driver Eddie Roque, who is delighted to see Martins and his pony stamping their authority at the track.

“She’s got the horse going like you would not believe,” he said.

“When she broke the record last weekend [with 1:01.0] she came through the three-hold and made it to the top before the first turn, and that’s what gave her the advantage.”

Roque’s mare holds the two-year-old record on a quarter-mile track and three-year-old world record on a five-16th track.

It previously tied the mares record on a five-16th track as a four-year-old, which it has since broken.

Roque reckons the best is yet to come from his mare. “The horse is amazing and I don’t really think it’s over,” he said. “I think it’s going to go further.

“The track record is a fifth of a second away and I think she is going to go further because this year the horse has got a driver that is paying attention to it and doing what needs to be done to get there.”

Martins, who has been involved in the sport since the age of 7, jumped at an invitation to compete in Indiana.

“Eddie offered me the opportunity and I accepted,” she said. “I am here for the whole summer until middle of September.”

Martins represents Meadow Inn Stables, which is owned by Roque, and competes with multiple racing ponies also owned by Bermudians.

“Out of the stables I race three ponies owned by Eddie Roque, two owned by Francis DeSilva and one owned by Aaron Sims,” she said.

Martins enjoyed immediate success in Indiana, having secured four victories and two seconds on her debut last month.

She posted two wins with DeSilva’s stallion, Bet’s Big Kid, and one each with geldings Yobro Dante and HotShot Jet, owned by DeSilva and Roque respectively.

She also posted a pair of seconds with MI’s Where’s the Party, which has since gone on to bigger and better things.

“My expectations going in were to have fun and learn more,” Martins said. “I am taking it all in stride and enjoying my time and look forward to the rest of the summer.

“It is exciting and the challenge of it is there is more competition out here and it’s different competition every week.”

Martins is the second Bermudian harness driver to achieve a world record overseas this year.

Kiwon Waldron, 21, blazed to a gelding world record on a quarter-mile track with Allard Racing’s nine-year-old pony, BA Show Stopper, competing in Quebec, Canada, in May.

The pair achieved the feat after winning a two-horse heat in one minute flat starting from the two-hold position in the Free for All division at North Shore Raceway.

BA Show Stopper is no stranger to breaking records, having done so with his previous owners competing in Indiana.

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Published July 20, 2022 at 5:42 pm (Updated July 20, 2022 at 5:42 pm)

Candyce Martins breaks mares world record with MI’s Where’s The Party

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