Day At The Track
Downbytheseaside, Harness Racing

Downbytheseaside captures Progress Pace elim

Dover, DE ---  Downbytheseaside overcame post position nine to win the $35,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination in 1:50.1 over harness racing stablemate Fear The Dragon on Wednesday night (Nov. 22) at Dover Downs. Chris Page drove the Brian Brown trainee to a thee length victory for his 13th win in 21 season's starts. The son of Somebeachsomewhere has now banked $1.44 million in 2017. He is owned by Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, and Diamond Creek Racing. Fear The Dragon finished second and Geez Joe was third in the 11-horse contest. The top eight horses in the elimination will return for the $300,000 (est.) final on Thursday (Nov. 30). Click here for a complete chart of the race. USTA Communications Department 

Michael Stanley and Petacular, harness racing

Breeders Crown champion euthanized

Durham Park Stud today issued a media release informing of the sad passing of 2017 Australian harness racing three-year-old filly of the year, Petacular. Durham Park confirmed the Breeders Crown champion was euthanized after breaking a cannon bone while spelling in the paddock. Owner and breeder Bruce Edward was devastated. “It’s an absolute shame, but after discussions with the surgeons at Ballarat Veterinary Practice we decided it was unfair on the mare to put her through a complex operation and six to eight months of recovery in a box with expected complications for a low chance of recovery,” Mr Edward said. During her racing career Petacular won 19 races and had seven placings from 26 starts for earnings of $454,083, including Group 1 wins in the two-year-old Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series Final and the Woodlands Stud Breeders Crown 3YO Fillies Final. She will also be remembered for her four brave second placings in Group 1 finals, including the Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series 3YO Fillies Final, the Victorian Oaks, the NSW Oaks and the 2YO Fillies Breeders Crown Final. Mr Edward said Petacular would have gone on to be “an important broodmare at Durham Park Stud”. Re-live Petacular's memorable 3YO Fillies Breeders Crown victory At trainer/driver Michael Stanley’s request Petacular was buried on his farm. The Stanley stable issued a statement today, which read: “It is with much regret and a tremendously heavy heart that I inform the racing industry of the tragic loss of our beautiful, brave mare Petacular (Bonnie). "Whilst spelling, she had a freak accident in the paddock. Petacular was dearly loved by all involved at the Stanley Stable and will be deeply missed, particularly  by Mick, who shared a very special bond with her, as did her best friend RoRo (Soho Angel). She was treated like the Queen and she knew herself that she was so special. "We would like to acknowledge Bruce Edward and the and the PETstock Racing Syndicate for entrusting her in our care. Every moment with Bonnie was a pleasure and we are privileged to have been a part of her life. Thank you for everything BonBon. RIP big girl”. Harness Racing Victoria (HRV) extends sincere condolences to all involved with Petacular. Fans are continuing to send tributes to the filly on social media. Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

The Meadowlands, Harness Racing

Millions on the line at The Meadowlands

East Rutherford, NJ - Saturday night at The Meadowlands is the penultimate stop on the 2017 Grand Circuit with over $2.6 million in purses distributed over the finals of the TVG Series for older horses and the Freshman Fall Final Four. The harness racing stars of the season will align over the eight races to make their case for divisional honors.   Hannelore Hanover (Yannick Gingras) has the $175,000 TVG Mare Trot to use as a final push for Horse Of The Year honors with her top two rivals, Ariana G and Manchego, already in the clubhouse. She'll face the late season sensation Emoticon Hanover (Dan Dube) who has seared through the second half of the season in the mare division while Hannelore raced open competition.   What The Hill (David Miller) accepted an invitation to race in the $350,000 TVG Open final as the sophomore Breeders Crown champ. A win against older would likely advance his position for the Dan Patch trophy for that division.   Ron Burke trains Hannelore Hanover and What The Hill for his own interests as Burke Racing and J&T Silva on both. Weaver Bruscemi and Frank Baldachino are partners on the Hannelore while Our Horse Cents Stable and Deo Volente Farms hold shares in What The Hill.   Youaremycandygirl could cement the pacing filly title for Burke, Gingras and owner Bill Donovan with a win in the $381,200 Three Diamonds stake while Stay Hungry could do the same in the colt pace for owners Brad Grant and Irwin Samelman, trainer Tony Alagna and driver Doug McNair in the $411,700 Governors Cup.   The freshman colt trot leader is still unclear with several contenders to battle in the $464,650 Valley Victory. Fashionwoodchopper (D. Miller) is the PASS champ and won both weeks at The Red Mile for Jim Campbell and Fashion Farms, Wolfgang (Gingras) nipped Takter stable-mate Sam Different Day in the Matron for owners Brixton Medical, Goran Falk, Hatfield Stable and Fair Island Farm while Fourth Dimension (Brian Sears) won last week's elim and is the likely favorite for owner Courant, Inc.   The filly trot is a wide open affair, but the unbeaten Manchego wrapped up divisional honors early. Ake Svanstedt and Blue Chip Bloodstock's Plunge Blue Chip was vicious in the elimination and is the filly to beat in the $420,750 Goldsmith Maid.   The older pacers are still a puzzle and the contenders are assembled for the $350,000 TVG Pacing final. McWicked was just that in a qualifier last Saturday, dragging Brian Sears around the oval in 1:48.4 for Casie Coleman and owner SSG Stable and will take some beating here.   The pacing mares are just as competitive, Pure Country (Mark MacDonald) could probably wrap divisional honors with a win here following her Breeders Crown success for Takter and Diamond Creek Racing.   Make your reservations for the big night in Pink, the track's terraced dining room at the track.   Post time is 7:15 p.m..   Nick Salvi

Barn Girl, harness racing

Barn Girl wins 3rd straight, 14th this year

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 22, 2017 -- Barn Girl won her third straight race -- and 14th this year -- with a facile front-end harness racing score in Wednesday's $18,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Trot at The Meadows. Barn Girl zipped to the top from post 6 for Aaron Merriman and never permitted any effective outside flow to develop. She defeated the pocket-sitting Lady Ping by 1-3/4 lengths in 1:55.4 over a "good" surface, with Panana Republic third. Bill Bercury trains Barn Girl, a 5-year-old daughter of Cash Hall-Turquoise Sweetie who now has won $555,968 and 48.2 percent of her 85 career starts, for Renee Bercury. Merriman piloted four winners on the 12-race card while Jeremy Indof and trainer Dirk Simpson teamed for a pair of victories. HOLIDAY EVENT AT THE MEADOWS SATURDAY FEATURES WAGERING SEMINARS, CHILI COOK-OFF, TOYS FOR TOTS COLLECTION “A Day at the Races,” a holiday weekend special event at The Meadows Racetrack & Casino that features wagering seminars, a chili cook-off and an unique competition among CBS radio personalities, is set for Saturday, Nov. 25. The Meadows and the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA) are joint sponsors of the event. During seminars in Delvin’s Banquet Room at 12:30 PM, 1:30 PM and 2:30 PM, The Meadows Director of Racing Kevin Decker and Meadows Live! co-host and race analyst Jeff Zidek will advise attendees — no matter their level of expertise — on the finer points of handicapping and wagering. Fans will enjoy an immediate opportunity to deploy that advice on Saturday’s live racing card, which begins at 1:05 PM. In addition, all seminar participants will receive a “swag bag” of goodies (while supplies last). Other festivities include: The 12:30 PM chili cook-off pitting The Meadows Executive Chef Lonnie Stephenson, The Meadows Food & Beverage Director Cory Scheppmann and the North Strabane Fire Department. (There’s no truth to the rumor that the firefighters will be on hand solely to cool off any excesses by Messrs. Stephenson and Scheppmann.) All participants may sample the chili and vote for their favorites. The unusual “CBS Radio Takeover,” in which Chris Mueller (93.7 The Fan), Wookie (Y108 Froggy) and Elista (Star 100.7) will compete in bowling, blackjack, harness race wagering and a match race; the latter goes at approximately 2:30 PM. Each of the three stations will broadcast live from The Meadows between 9 AM and 7 PM. While fun is the order of the day, the spirit of Thanksgiving won’t be forgotten, as “A Day At The Races” includes a collection for Toys for Tots. Each participant who brings in an unwrapped new toy will receive a $5 betting voucher. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

Champion New Zealand harness racing trainer-driver Mark Purdon, deeply disappointed when his horse Mr Mojito, hot favourite at 10/9, sustained a flat sulky tyre soon after the start and raced at the rear before finishing 11th behind Chicago Bull in the McInerney Ford Classic at Gloucester Park 12 months ago, has high hopes of make amends for that unfortunate setback by driving Ultimate Machete to victory in the $125,000 Group 1 Yes Loans Four-Year-Old Classic at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The Yes Loans Classic replaces the McInerney Ford Classic, which has been a summer carnival feature event since 1996. Ultimate Machete, whose 21 starts have produced nine wins and ten placings for stakes of $574,905, will be a dominant favourite after drawing the prized No. 1 barrier in the 2130m classic. The Bettors Delight stallion earned a trip to Perth after scoring a superb victory over the experienced top-flight pacer Tiger Tara in the $234,000 Woodlands New Zealand Free-For-All at Addington last Friday when he had a tough run in the breeze before surging past the pacemaker Tiger Tara 70m from the post and beating that pacer by a neck, rating 1.51.9 over 1950m, with final quarters in 27.9sec. and 26.9sec. The $234,000 Woodlands New Zealand Free-For-All at Addington last Friday Ultimate Machete was driven by Natalie Rasmussen, who described him as a “serious horse” who would love the style of West Australian racing. “He’s got good gate speed and can also sit out wide and run home strongly,” she said. “He just keeps on going and doesn’t lie down; getting into a dog fight is his go in life.” Ultimate Machete gave a sample of his class on his only previous visit to Australia, when he finished third in a heat of the New South Wales Derby at Menangle last February before finishing a 1m second to his brilliant stablemate Vincent in the 2400m final in which the final 400m was covered in a sizzling 25.5sec. Late last year Ultimate Machete’s wins included the Group 1 $156,000 Sires Stakes at Addington, the Group 2 Alabar Classic at Alexandra Park and a listed $195,000 classic at Alexandra Park when he dashed over the final 800m of the 2200m event in 55.5sec. Hall of Fame trainer Gary Hall Snr and star reinsman Gary Hall Jnr have combined to win the McInerney Ford Classic five times, including the past three years, with Waylade, Beaudiene Boaz and Chicago Bull. They also won with The Falcon Strike in 2001. Hall Snr won the event, previously known as the Coca Cola Pace and 6PR Classic, as a reinsman with Love of Glory (whom he trained) in 1990, Valley Champ (1993) and Slick Vance in 1995. Hall Snr has two runners in Friday night’s classic --- Herrick Roosevelt (Hall Jnr) and Runrunjimmydunn (Michael Grantham) --- who are capable of fighting out the finish after starting from back-line draws. Boyanup trainer-reinsman Justin Prentice is hoping for a powerful performance from Rocknroll Lincoln, who warmed up for the Group 1 event with an impressive all-the-way victory over Herrick Roosevelt and Wrappers Delight in a Golden Nugget prelude last Friday night. Rocknroll Lincoln will start from the No. 3 barrier on the front line, with the Ross Olivieri-trained Wrappers Delight (Chris Voak) at No. 2. Prentice said that he has been a fan of Ultimate Machete and held the horse in high regard. “I’ve always watched him because he is a half-brother to my good mare Major Reality and I have always liked him,” he said. Major Reality has had all her 36 starts for Prentice in WA for 20 wins, nine placings and stakes of $389,239. Her victories have included the Group 3 Gold Bracelet as a two-year-old, the 2015 Group 1 WA Oaks, the Group 2 Empress Stakes, the Group 2 Norms Daughter Classic and the Group 3 Golden Girls Classic at Pinjarra. Prentice will drive Major Reality from barrier six in the $50,000 Clipsal By Schneider Electric Norms Daughter Classic on Friday night. He has engaged ace Victorian reinsman Chris Alford to handle his other runner, Quite A Delight, who should be prominent from barrier two on the front line. It is an outstanding field which includes the outstanding Victorian six-year-old mare Ameretto, who will be driven by her trainer Kerryn Manning from barrier seven. Ameretto is in dazzling form, with seven wins from her past eight starts, with her only defeat in this period coming two starts ago with a wonderful second to Lennytheshark in the Victoria Cup at Melton. She will take a power of beating at her WA debut. Among WA’s hopes in the race are the Hall-trained Ideal Alice, who is drawn to lead from the No. 1 barrier, the speedy Eden Franco (a winner at each of her past six starts), the impressive Skye Bond-trained Donegal Rundlescreek and the speedy New South Wales grey mare My Rona Gold, a dashing all-the-way winner over millionaire pacer Bling It On in a 1609m trial in 1.54.2 at Menangle on Tuesday of last week. Ken Casellas

New Zealand superstar Lazarus, the raging hot harness racing favourite to win the $1.1 million final of the TABtouch Inter Dominion championship at Gloucester Park and with a remarkable winning record of 86 per cent, is facing the serious possibility of being beaten in the opening heat on Friday night. Lazarus, undefeated at his past eight starts and fresh from his devastating victory in the New Zealand Cup at Addington earlier this month, has drawn the outside in the field of nine in the 2130m heat and prominent West Australian breeder and owner Rob Watson is bubbling with confidence that his outstanding five-year-old Soho Tribeca will prove the master of Lazarus. “Soho Tribeca has drawn barrier two and the draw is certainly in our favour,” he said. “Our aim will be to lead.” Watson revealed that Soho Tribeca had worked brilliantly last Saturday morning, saying that the big, powerful stallion had recorded a sensational time, leaving trainer-reinsman Kim Prentice buoyant and extremely bullish about the horse’s prospects, not only on the first night of the series, but in the rich final over 2936m. “Soho Tribeca recorded some amazing sectionals on Saturday and has pulled up in great shape and is ready to go,” he said. “Kim couldn’t be happier, and I don’t think he can sleep at night; he’s so excited.” Asked to compare Soho Tribeca with Lazarus, Watson said: “I really don’t know, to be honest. They have never raced against each other. I know that our horse is capable of some amazing things, but I’m sure Lazarus is as well. So, I guess it’s hard to line them up, but the barrier draws are in our favour. “There is going to be a bit of speed from Devendra (the polemarker). But I think we should land in front and the only problem then could be Run Oneover, regarding what he does at the start.” Run Oneover, trained by Gary Hall Snr, bounced back to his best form last Friday night when he started from barrier five and dashed to the front after 400m before going on to win comfortably from Mysta Magical Mach, rating 1.54.1 over 1730m. However, reinsman Gary Hall Jnr said that it was his early intention not to bustle Run Oneover at the start from the No. 4 barrier. Ace Christchurch trainer-reinsman Mark Purdon is disappointed that his champion has drawn the outside barrier but punters will be unwise to underestimate the brilliant pacer who has amassed $2,652,139 from 31 wins and five placings from 36 starts. Soho Tribeca is overdue for a change of fortune after having been narrowly beaten into second place at each of his past three starts, losing by a head to Shandale over 2130m, by a head to Chicago Bull over 1730m and by a short half-head to Chicago Bull over 2536m. Soho Tribeca, who made most of the running to win the Group 1 Vicbred Classic for four-year-old stallions and geldings at Melton early in July this year, also showed his class when he won the Golden Nugget from Nathans Courage and Chicago Bull at Gloucester Park last December. Watson declared that Soho Tribeca had improved considerably since his Nugget success. “He’s far better now and has become a stronger horse,” he said. “He’s an amazing animal, big and strong and is improving all the time.” A win by Soho Tribeca would complete a remarkable hat-trick for Watson, whose two previous Inter Dominion runners at Gloucester Park have been Faking It (2004) and Auckland Reactor in 2012 (as a member of a syndicate). Faking It, trained by Gary Hall Snr and driven by Gary Hall Jnr, won the first heat on the opening night, beating Double Identity, driven by Prentice. Then, in 2012, Auckland Reactor, driven by Anthony Butt, won the first heat on the opening night. Neither Faking It nor Auckland Reactor was placed in the final. Now Watson would dearly love to win the first heat of this year’s Inters series and then go on and triumph in the rich final. Ken Casellas

The 1st Annual Team Allard Yearling Giveaway is in the books, as they say! Rene Allard became the 2017 leading harness racing trainer in both wins and UTRS% at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono and to celebrate, Team Allard gave away lots of free stuff! Dave Erickson was the lucky Grand Prize winner and he won 5% of a yearling with Team Allard. That’s right, no gimmicks, no purchase fees, no expenses or bills….His only hardship is to pick either My Sweet Memory (A Sweet Lou filly) or Bettor’s Account (A Bettor’s Delight Colt), the two yearlings selected to choose from. We won’t put any pressure on Dave just yet to select, as he probably will want to research their pedigrees, scan pictures, watch some of the replays of their sires winning Grand Circuit races and setting world records! There were also 8 Consolation prizes offered up to anyone who signed up, including a set of Tim Tetrick Racing colors; New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Gift Bag; Team Allard custom winter jacket; Brian Sears Hall of Fame Memorabilia, and much more!  All winner’s names will be available at The bottom line is that Dave Erickson has never owned a horse...and now he does. He lives in Niagara Falls, and is within driving distance to a lot of racetracks. It’s never too late to get involved in harness racing and now Dave has a reason to bring all of his friends and family to the racetrack and learn all about the sport! In an interview after accepting his award, Rene was excited about the Yearling Giveaway, and looking forward to doing it again next year.  “It gives everybody a chance to get part of it, and we like to give back to the sport we love,” he said.  About his 2017 Leading Trainer award, he was equally emotional, accepting with his parents and brother, Simon Allard at his side, along with members of Team Allard.  “Growing up, I dreamed about racing horses, never mind getting those kind of trophies.”.  He praised his team, saying it is much more than Rene Allard contributing to his award. The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono closes out their 2017 season on Saturday, November 25th.  The Breeders Crown returns October, 2018.   Jennifer Starr with Team Allard

Pompano Beach, FL...November 22, 2017...Thanksgiving is Thursday but the feast for harness racing horsemen is Sunday at Pompano Park as the FSBOA sponsored Breeders Stakes Finals takes place with over $420,000 up for grabs in their eight championship finals for two and three year-old Florida breds. The action begins with five non-wagering events beginning at 6:30 with I Rhoda Daley seeking to continue her dominance in the $49,750 event for juvenile trotting fillies. This daughter of Desperado Don has won six of eight starts this semester under the guidance of trainer Jason MacDougall, who co-owns with Lee Clarke. I Rhoda Daley is expected to have the driving services of Hall of Famer Wally Hennessey. Her two opponents in the rich final are Ms Katie B and Jennifer, the latter having beaten I Rhoda Daley on two occasions this fall. The $53,500 Breeders Stakes Final for two year-old trotting colts and geldings follows with Jay and Kim Sears' Brian, named after Jay's Hall of Fame son, after his fourth straight win in his class. The gelded son of Proud Bushy will likely have to deal with Prairie Eclipse, still a maiden although he has been second to Brian on several occasions during this fall season. The two year-old Final goes for $53,000 and features Gold Star Diablo, a gelded son of Mysticism. Trained by Mike Deters for owner Dan Clements, Gold Star Diablo is looking to extend his current winning skein to six to go along with a sharp 1:54.3 mark set earlier in the month at Pompano Park. Silver Wings, who has a pair of wins in Florida Stakes action this fall, is expected to provide the main competition in this event, along with Jay Jay, who hasn't been worse than third in his eight career starts. In the $53,100 final for three year-old trotting fillies, Atlantic Crest, last year's juvenile champion in her class, looks to repeat this year and has been untouchable in her five starts this year at Pompano Park for owner-trainer-driver Sergio Corona. This daughter of Crest has been a dominant winner in each of her starts and owns a 1:55.2 mark to go along with a bankroll of $102,386 coming into Super Night. The final non-wagering events pits last year's champion, I'm Done, against Azzaro, with this rivalry turning into a slugfest through a grueling "16 rounds." Each has eight wins and eight seconds in their 16 encounters and are, thus far, in a "dead-heat" for Horse of the Year honors. I'm Done is trained by Jim McDonald for owner Troy Basista and will have John MacDonald in his bike while Azzaro, trained by Kim Sears, who co-owns with husband Jay, will have Wally Hennessey handling the lines. The $54,500 Breeders Stake Final for three year-old pacing colts and geldings is the first of three events on the pari-mutuel card and kicks off the early daily double. Prairie Panther, the splendid altered son of Royel Millennium, expected to garner the most attention off of a six race winning streak at Pompano Park this fall. Trained by Mike Deters, who co-owns with Laurie Poulin, Prairie Panther comes off a very sharp 1:54.3 performance, capped off by a :27 sprint home. Jim Meittinis is expected back in the sulky and will have to contend with Maybe Ned, Fifth Son, Gold Star Bugsy and Gold Star Spider along the way. The juvenile pacing fillies, carded as race three, will shoot for a share of $53,800 and is expected to be highly competitive as Krinda, who had been somewhat dominant until last week, locks horse with Starcasim and Prairie Easter, who were one-two and noses apart last week as Krinda appeared rough gaited the entire route while racing on the outside. Krinda, a daughter of Six Of Diamonds, will have Wally Hennessey in the bike for trainer Kim Sears and owner Jay Sears. Starcasim, yet another daughter of Mysticism, is owned by Russ Guardino along with trainer-driver Joe Sanzeri. Prairie Easter will have Corey Braden handling her lines for trainer Mike Deters, who co-owns with Laurie Poulin and John Spindler. The sophomore pacing fillies will be vying for a share of a $55,400 purse with Tay Tay M, Gold Star Aurora and Prairie Cowgirl seemingly coming in with the best credentials. Tay Tay M made her Pompano Park fall debut a winning one in 1:55.1 for Wally Hennessey, This daughter of Six Of Diamonds, trained by Kim Sears for owners Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, comes into the action with the fastest mark of the group--1:53.4 over the Pocono Downs slick oval. Gold Star Aurora, a daughter of Rock On, trained by Maggie Audley for her "mom," Marianne, looks to retain the crown she won last year and has never been off the board in 15 starts--11 of which are wins. James (J.D.) Yoder will drive. Prairie Cowgirl, a slick daughter of Royel Millennium co-owned by trainer Deters along with Laurie Poulin and John Spindler, has been 1-2-3 in 19 of 20 career starts and has drawn the rail in this event for Jim Meittinis. The Super Night program also features a very classy quintet going post-ward in the $10,000 Open Handicap Pace. Panocchio, Mister Daytona, Bestinthebusiness, Sing For Me George and Drachan Hanover comprise the field, which features the lifetime winners of almost $2,000,000. Post time for the pari-mutuel card is set for 7:20 with the non-wagering events pegged to get underway at 6:00 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park and the FSBOA

Standardbred Canada is pleased to announce that a National Driving Championship (NDC) will be hosted in 2018 and the winner will have the opportunity to join 2017 Harness Racing World Driving Champion, James MacDonald, in the 2019 World Driving Championship in Sweden. Standardbred Canada hosted the 2017 World Driving Championship (WDC) in August and MacDonald's victory earned him an automatic invitation to the 2019 event in which he will become the representative for the International Trotting Association. Canada was invited to send a second driver to the 2019 event and Standardbred Canada's Board of Directors accepted the invitation. For the 2017 WDC, New Zealand also opted to send a second driver, Mark Purdon, along with the 2015 defending World Driving Champion, Dexter Dunn. "This is a great opportunity for another one of our top drivers to represent Canada on the international stage," said Dan Gall, President and CEO of Standardbred Canada. "We had such positive feedback and outstanding wagering results with the field of 11 drivers for the 2017 event that we felt it made sense for us to support the 2019 WDC by sending that 11th competitor." In 2018, a regional driving championship will be hosted in each of Standardbred Canada's four regions, and the top two drivers from each of those events will have the opportunity to compete in the National event. All championships are one-day events, consisting of eight races with drivers earning points based on their official finishing position. A Request For Proposals for host tracks will be issued later this week and track hosts will be announced in early January.   Kathy Wade Vlaar Manager, Industry Marketing Standardbred Canada

After rebounding from a disappointing outcome in the Breeders Crown with a win in last week's Valley Victory Stakes elimination, 2-year-old trotter Fourth Dimension will try to wrap up his season with one more harness racing victory in Saturday's $464,650 final at the Meadowlands Racetrack. The Valley Victory is one of the "Fall Final Four" stakes for 2-year-old trotters and pacers Saturday at the Big M. The Valley Victory, for male trotters, is joined by the $420,750 Goldsmith Maid for female trotters, $411,700 Governor's Cup for male pacers, and $381,200 Three Diamonds for female pacers. In addition, the card includes TVG Series championships for trotters and pacers. Fourth Dimension, trained by Marcus Melander, starts the Valley Victory final from post five after beating Kinda Lucky Lindy by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:55 last weekend. Brian Sears will drive the colt, who has won seven of 10 races and earned $176,700 for owner Courant Inc. In his start prior to the Valley Victory elimination, Fourth Dimension finished fifth in the Breeders Crown on Oct. 28 at Hoosier Park. He was the 1-2 favorite after winning his Breeders Crown elimination in a track-record 1:54, but was unable to find his footing in the final. "We were disappointed after the Breeders Crown," Melander said. "He had a lot of problems with the surface that day. It was the same for everyone, but my horse just had a lot of problems with it. He's a horse that really needs some grip and it was just slippery for him. It was too bad it was that day, but there is nothing we can do about it now. "(Last week) I was very happy with how he looked and how he trotted. He trained good after the Breeders Crown, otherwise I wouldn't have put him in there. He came out of the race good and I'm going to train him (Wednesday) a little bit. He seems very good." Fourth Dimension has won three of his past four starts, including a 1:52.4 victory in a division of the International Stallion Stakes at Lexington's Red Mile. That time is tied for the fastest race mile of the season by a 2-year-old trotter. In addition, the colt set or equaled track records four times this year. In the Valley Victory, Fourth Dimension's foes include Samo Different Day, who in October won a division of the Madison County at Hoosier Park in a then-track-record 1:54.4. Samo Different Day, who finished second in the Peter Haughton Memorial and Matron Stakes and was third in the Breeders Crown, received a bye to the final. Also in the field are Matron Stakes winner Wolfgang, Pennsylvania Sire Stakes champion Fashionwoodchopper, Kentucky Sire Stakes winner Hat Trick Habit, and Kindergarten Series winner Tito. "I'm looking forward to Saturday," Melander said. "He's beaten these horses before. It's a nice group of colts, but I know my horse is one of the best out there. He's showed a lot. He's a very nice colt." The Goldsmith Maid features elimination winner Plunge Blue Chip, who has won eight of nine races for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. Plunge Blue Chip's victories this season also include the Matron Stakes for 2-year-old female trotters. Among the horses joining her in the Goldsmith Maid are stakes-winners Hey Blondie, who received a bye to the final, and Seviyorum, who finished second in the Breeders Crown. Breeders Crown champion Stay Hungry, who received a bye, leads the group for the Governor's Cup, which also includes elimination winner Springsteen as well as stakes-winners Lost In Time, Closing Statement, and Nutcracker Sweet. The Three Diamonds features a field that includes Breeders Crown winner Youaremycandygirl and fellow stakes-winners Kissin In The Sand, Rainbow Room, Majorsspeciallady, Strong Opinion, and Reign On Me. Youaremycandygirl, Rainbow Room and Majorsspeciallady received byes. Kissin In The Sand was the elimination winner. For Saturday's complete Meadowlands entries, click here. Ken Weingartner

Harness Racing This Week: Fall Four and TVG finals, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit returns to Dover Downs this Wednesday (Nov. 22) for a $35,000 elimination in the Hap Hansen Progress Pace for 3-year-old open pacers. A field off 11 will compete for eight spots in the final slated for Nov. 30. On Saturday night (Nov. 25) Meadowlands Racetrack will host finals in each of the Fall Four events for freshman pacers and trotters and the TVG series for open pacers and trotters. The Fall Four features the 464,650 Valley Victory for 2-year-old male trotters, the $420,750 Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, the $411,700 Governor's Cup for 2-year-old male pacers and the $381,200 Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers. The TVG finals consist of the $350,000 Open Pace, the $350,000 Open Trot, the $175,000 Mare Pace and the $175,000 Mare Trot. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: World champion Downbytheseaside eclipsed the $2 million mark with a victory in his $210,000 division of the Matron Stakes for 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Thursday (Nov. 16) at Dover Downs. The passing lane was handy for driver Chris Page to collar front-pacing Filibuster Hanover (Yannick Gingras) in the final steps for a 1:50.1 victory on a chilly and windy night. Brian Brown trains the Somebeacsomewhere-Sprig Hanover colt, who is owned by Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, Country Club Acres and Diamond Creek Racing. In what was his 12th win of the year, Downbytheseaside was placed in third by Page immediately after the pair left the starting gate and was content to allow Filibuster Hanover to establish the early fractions of :26.3, :55.4 and 1:23.1. Page kept the second betting choice in the pocket spot while Rock N Tony ranged up on his outside in second at the three-quarter pole. As Rock N Tony retreated after his overland journey entering the stretch, his stablemate Eddard Hanover, one of three horses trained by Ron Burke in this race, paced into third position with Funknwaffles in hot pursuit. It initially appeared Page would steer Downbytheseaside to the outside to challenge Filibuster Hanover, but the colt's driver opted for the rail route to down his rival by a neck in the shadow of the wire. Eddard Hanover (Tetrick) remained in third. M And L of Delaware, the nom de course for Roz and Doug Paul, who are longtime harness patrons that usually have a propensity for pacers, now have a Matron trotting champion with their partner Bill Wiswell in Bill's Man. Tetrick guided the horse from off the pace to score in a new lifetime best 1:52.2 over Devious Man (Andy Miller) with Top Flight Angel (Daniel Dube) in third in the $201,900 sophomore male trot. Breeders Crown champion What The Hill (David Miller) and Devious Man (Andy Miller) exchanged the lead prior to Bill's Man closing with authority for his fifth win of the season. John Butenschoen conditions the son of Credit Winner-Silver Springs, who now has banked $454,446 this year. David Miller and Agent Q came home first in the $182,700 Matron sophomore filly pace final. The daughter of Western Terror-Teenage Paige scored her 10th triumph of 2017 for Martin Scharf, Bob Muscara and Rochetti Cassar Racing. Aaron Lambert trains the winner of $1,137,620 lifetime. Idyllic Beach (Gingras) was runner-up with Tequila Monday (Brett Miller) in third. Agent Q stopped the clock in 1:51. Determination's Dream Together, handled by Dan Dube, caught Evelyn (Andy Miller) at the wire by a nose to notch a 1:53.2 win for trainer Luc Blais in the $186,600 sophomore filly trot. The Muscle Hill-Danae 3-year-old won for the fourth time this year and this was the 13th occasion from 15 starts that she finished first, second or third. Race favorite Ice Attraction (Ake Svanstedt) finished third. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2017, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2017 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders through and including the races on Nov. 18. Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,609.5; 2. David Miller - 1,333; 3. Tim Tetrick - 1,088; 4. Scott Zeron - 714; 5. Corey Callahan - 510. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,454.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,261.5; 3. Brian Brown - 512; 4. John Butenschoen - 511; 5. Ake Svanstedt - 451. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 331.4; 2. Determination - 291; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 287.6; 4. Emerald Highlands Farm - 250; 5. Diamond Creek Racing - 217.8. Looking ahead: The 2017 Grand Circuit season comes to a close on Nov. 30. Dover Downs will host the final stake of the season in the $300,000 (est.) Hap Hansen Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers. Paul Ramlow

DOVER, Del. --- Two separately owned outstanding three-year-olds - Fear The Dragon and Downbytheseaside lead an 11-horse field in the $35,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace (HHPP) headliner on a big pre-Thanksgiving harness racing card along with three Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) preliminaries on Wednesday, Nov. 22 at Dover Downs. First post is 4:30 p.m. Trainer Bruce Brown says Fear The Dragon trained so well a week ago that ownership paid a $25,000 supplemental fee to race in the HHPP. The colt who ranked at the top of the Hambletonian Society Breeders Crown top 10 poll most of the summer drew post 5 with Hall of Famer David Miller while Downbytheseaside, piloted by Chris Page, winner of last week’s Matron Final leaves from post 9 in the second tier. The first eight finishers qualify for next Thursday’s $300,000 Final. Earlier in the first of two DSBF $20,000 events, Serendipity Stable’s Star Sapphire and driver Russ Foster seeks a second straight prelim win, wire-to-wire in 2:00.2. Déjà vu Blue, driven by Ross Wolfenden was  second for owners Howard Taylor, Tom Lazzaro, Mike Casalino and trainer Dylan Davis. Alpine Chic, handled by Allan Davis, who shares ownership with Delbert Cain and Nanticoke Racing, finished third last week. In the second $20,000 DSBF trot, Corey Callahan closed with a rush driving Vandalous to score a victory for BCJM, Fuquay-Varina, Cinbrew Ent. And Chambers Racing, to notch the fastest win in 1;59.4 edging Uptown Spunk and Roger Plante by a head . The $20,000 DSBF Colts and Gelding Trot has eight starters led by Super Fly (Art Stafford Jr.). Bobby Glassmeyer bred, owned and trained Boston Cruiser (Jonathan Roberts), Bobby Myers’ Brother Kenny (Tim Tetrick) and Sky Marshal owned by trainer-driver Carlo Poliseno and Jane Dunavant, are contenders.  The top eight point-getters after Wednesday’s two prelim legs make the $100,000 DSBF Final on Nov. 30. The four lucrative Delaware events will be part of the $300,000 (est.) Hap Hansen Progress Pace all-star card  There is no live harness on Thursday. Dover Downs, management and horsemen join others having a Happy Thanksgiving. Monday through Thursday. post time is 4:30 p.m. The daily program features a 50-cent Pick 5 (races 2-6) and a late daily double ( races 12 and 13).  General parking and admission are free. Reservations are suggested for the Winner's Circle Restaurant’s acclaimed Buffet and for the 4-star Dover Downs Hotel. Call 302-674-4600.Top harness and thoroughbred races are featured in the Racing and Sports Book daily for 12 Noon until 12 Midnight. Marv Bachrad

Trainer Mark Purdon knows the public expectation on the series favourite. The early bird may catch the worm but more importantly he avoids he flies. Which is why Kiwi pacing hero Lazarus has been working in the dark this week. The two-time New Zealand Cup champ kicks off his Inter Dominion campaign in a very tricky opening heat at Gloucester Park in Perth around midnight (NZT) on Friday, drawing the worst possible barrier with hard-running local Soho Tribeca drawn to lead and burn over the 2100m mobile. Trainer Mark Purdon knows the public expectation on the series favourite and realises there can be no easy introduction to the series. Lazarus is probably going to have to work to sit parked and outmuscle Soho Tribeca, who has even opened favourite with Tabcorp. "He is a good horse Soho Tribeca, I saw him winning here last year and he will be hard to catch," said Purdon. "But we are there to win, we have to be with Laz's following. "So I guess we will probably circle them at some stage but it won't be easy, I can tell you that." While Purdon doesn't know what result to expect from Friday night's opening heat he is at least happy Lazarus and his three stablemates Have Faith In Me (Inter), Ultimate Machete (four-year-old races) and Piccadilly Princess (mares) handled the long haul to Perth well. "Ultimate Machete was the one who was tiredest but that is understandable considering he raced older horses and beat them in a fast time on Friday. But seeing Laz arrive in such great shape makes me happy we missed the free-for-all with him." The All Stars quartet at staying at the same Gary Elson stables from where Smolda won the Interdom last season and Purdon says lessons learned from that campaign have already been incredibly valuable. "Last season I was learning as I went along but I know the environment and a few more tricks now." Two of those tricks are avoiding flies and the heat, which means the alarm clock goes off a bit earlier. "Back home we would work Laz anywhere between 7 and 9.30am but here he is usually done by 5.30am. "Once the sun comes up it not only gets hot very quickly but the flies come out and they can be a real pain, even for the local horses but especially ours because they are not used to them. "If you work them when the flies start buzzing around the horses can kick out at them and potentially kick you out of the cart or get their legs over the hopples. "So we get their work over and done with before 6am and then they can go out in the paddock where they wear mesh rugs and covers for their necks and faces. "These are all things I learned last year and although the training track here is a little different from home it is not going to make a huge difference to how we work." If Lazarus can sit parked outside Soho Tribeca and beat him it will send shivers down the spines of rival connections but defeat would not be a disaster for Purdon. The brutal nature of the series and lack of depth in the heats means energy and legs conserved with a placing can pay dividends without jeopardising Grand Final hopes. Cases in point: both Lennytheshark and Smolda (twice) were beaten during the series before winning the last two Perth finals. Have Faith In Me meets local star Chicago Bull in the third heat on Friday in which a placing would be a good result while Lennytheshark will be unbackable in the second heat. Inter Dominions •First round heats: Friday Nov 24, three A$75,000 heats over 2130m at Gloucester Park, Perth •Second round: Tuesday Nov 28, three A$75,000 heats over 2100m at Donaldson Park, Bunbury •Third round: Friday December 1, three A$75,000 heats over 2536m at Gloucester Park, Perth •Grand Final: Friday December 8, A$1.1 million over 2936m mobile at Gloucester Park, Perth •Other Grand Final night highlights: A$200,000 Retravision Golden Nugget (Ultimate Machete); A$125,000 Westral Mares Classic (Piccadilly Princess) MIchael Guerin

While New Zealand harness racing fans are going loopy for Lazarus, New South Wales is shouting loud for Lenny, and the Vics are crazy for San Carlo; WA's contingency of TABtouch Inter Dominion runners are ready to compete in the biggest, and most exciting test known to standardbreds! THE BULL CAN WIN Chicago Bull has been vying for the top WA contender spot since rankings have been released, and has put away the best in the west to date. His multiple Inter Dominion winning driver Gary Hall Jnr says The Bull is up to the challenge.  LEWIS HAS BEEN THERE BEFORE Champion WA driver Chris Lewis has two Inter Dominion championships to his name and is expecting his two drives this year to thrive in the exciting traditional format of the world renowned series. GET YOUR TICKETS TO THE VOAK SHOW Popular WA driver Chris #VoakTrain Voak is pumped to be involved in the 2017 TABtouch Inter Dominion series, and rates the chances of Vultan Tin and Jambiani. TRIBECA; EXTRAORDINARY One of harness racing's most influential owners says Soho Tribeca is going extraordinary in the lead up to Pacing's big dance. 22 November 2017 | GPTV | Scott Hamilton

DOVER, Del. --- Pedal Power and Ibetyoucanwiggle pulled mild harness racing surprises to win the 2nd leg $20,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) Two-Year-Old Filly Paces on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at Dover Downs. Theresademoninme took the $25,000 Open Trot. Post time is 4:30 p.m. With both 1st leg winners -Gracefullyforgiven and Go Sandy Go - virtually tied as race favorites, Tim Tetrick pulled Pedal Power out of third turning for home and zoomed past en route to a 1:53.4 triumph in the first of two $20,000 DSBF preliminaries. Last week Gracefullyforgiven ( Art Stafford Jr ), who won for the fifth consecutive outing and Go Sandy Go with an impressive winning debut in DSBF 1st leg separate victories while Pedal Power finished third, but this time drew the rail. Pedal Pusher won for the fifth time in eight starts with two seconds and a third this season for owner- trainer Darrell and Leah Lewis. The Roddy's Bags Again-Calico Moon bay has now won $58,443 in her rookie season. Go Sandy Go finished second in front of Gracefullyforgiven. In the second $20,000 DSBF prelim, Ibetyoucanwiggle came on to score a 1:56.4 victory for Montrell Teague driving for trainer Clyde Francis and owner-breeder George Teague Inc, The win was the second in 2017 for the daughter of Mr. Wiggles-Betting Machine, In eight races, she has added two seconds and three thirds while earning $52,768. Studio Session (Jason Thompson) was runner-up. Cheyenne Zone (Vic Kirby) took third money. After the two DSBFprelim legs are completed on Wednesday, the top eight DSBF point getters in the four divisions make the $100,000 finals for colt and filly trotters and pacers next Thursday, Nov. 30. That day will be highlighted by the $300,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace for three-year-olds. In the $25,000 Open Handicap Trot on the regular program, Mike Casalino and trainer Dylan Davis' Therisademoninme has been spectacularly solid in his last eight outings. A 1:54 victory with regular driver Jonathan Roberts in the bike, is his fastest clocking of the year. Thereisademoninme has made the winner's circle in five of his six 2017 wins with three close-up second-place finishes Stafford Jr.) Uva Hanover (Tetrick) in his first local appearance after racing most of the winter at Dover, finished second. Celebrity Pegasus (Stafford Jr.) after spending much of the race on the outside, was third. Murmur Hanover was scratched. I Like My Boss, a one-time Delaware-sired champion, is back in a winning groove. The Don Boss Via-Wild One gelding won has second in-a-row and fourth in his last five races, behind driver Allan Davis. Owned by trainer Bob Shahan ad Jim and A.M. Parsons, his has banked $83,856 of his career $471,120 earnings, this season. On Wednesday, in addition to two $20,000 DSBF Filly and a Male trot 2nd leg prelim, an 11-horse field will vie in the $35,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace (HHPP) eliminination. The first eight finishers return on Nov. 30 for the $300,000 (HHPP Final. There is no live racing this Thursday, Nov. 23, Dover Downs Harness wish all a Happy Thanksgiving. Dover Downs now features a 50-cent Pick 5 wager starting with the 2nd race through the 6th. A late daily double is carded for the 12th and 13th races. Dover Downs races four days a week, Monday through Thursday with post time at 4:30 p.m. Fine food is available while watching the races at the acclaimed Winner's Circle Restaurant Buffet. Call 302-674-4600 for reservations. Simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred races each day from 12 Noon until 12 Midnight in the Race and Sports Book. Marv Bachrad

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Dover, DE ---  Downbytheseaside overcame post position nine to win the $35,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination in 1:50.1 over harness racing stablemate Fear The Dragon on Wednesday night (Nov. 22) at Dover Downs. Chris Page drove the Brian Brown trainee to a thee length victory for his 13th win in 21 season's starts. The son of Somebeachsomewhere has now banked $1.44 million in 2017. He is owned by Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, and Diamond Creek Racing. Fear The Dragon finished second and Geez Joe was third in the 11-horse contest. The top eight horses in the elimination will return for the $300,000 (est.) final on Thursday (Nov. 30). Click here for a complete chart of the race. USTA Communications Department 
DAYTON, OH. - Churita, a 5-year-old mare by Airzoom Lindy, dominated her harness racing male competitors to capture the $18,500 Open "Turkey Trot" at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Wednesday night (Nov. 22). The classy Indiana-based winner of 28 races was reunited with driver Trace Tetrick for her third effort in the past two months at Dayton and responded with her first Ohio win, an open lengths 1:54 triumph over Cantab Lindy (Tyler Smith) and Milford's Z Tam (Dan Noble). Both Churita and Cantab Lindy left alertly with the winner finally seating the eventual runnerup just prior to the :27.3 opening quarter. Following a pedestrian stroll to the :57.1 halfway point, Tetrick upped the tempo to breeze past the three-quarters in 1:26 and cruise home to stop the clock in 1:54. Matt Rheinheimer trains Churita for Porterproffesionalservice Stable. Her career bankroll rose to $762,460 with the victory. Hollywood Dayton will be dark on Thanksgiving Thursday, but will resume racing with strong weekend cards on Friday and Saturday nights with 6:15 first race post times. Gregg Keidel
Batavia, NY---A heady drive by Billy Davis Jr. conserved effort for Squeeze This both early and late in the mile before he let her lunge down the harness racing lightning lane and capture the $10,000 Fillies and Mares Open Handicap Pace at Batavia Downs on Wednesday evening (Nov. 22). Voltina (Kevin Cummings) went back to her penchant of cutting the race; firing hard off the gate to take early command. She yielded briefly to Exotic Beach (Larry Stalbaum) at the quarter, but retook the front by the three-eighths pole. As they motored past the half in :57.3, Squeeze This came first up from sixth and dropped fortuitously into the two-hole in front of the now-gapping Exotic Beach and was sitting right on Voltina's back. As the group passed three-quarters, Hey Kobe (Ray Fisher Jr.) who had drafted up behind Squeeze This was now second on the outside and pushing the issue with the frontrunner all the way around the turn. At the top of the lane Hey Kobe made her way by Voltina who was visibly tiring, Aritzia Hanover (Drew Monti) was flying three-deep around Hey Kobe and Squeeze This, well, squeezed into the passing lane and was pacing up a storm by the pylons. When they hit the wire Squeeze This scored a head victory in 1:56.2 over Aritzia Hanover who was another head in front of Hey Kobe who finished third. It was the seventh win of the year for Squeeze This ($14.20) and the win pushed her earnings to $54,866 for owner Garth Betchel. Jim Graham trains the 5-year-old daughter of Allamerican Native. In the $8,000 distaff Open II, America Ferrera (Kevin Cummings) turned a two-hole trip behind Sarah Cola (Billy Davis Jr.) into a 1:56.3 seasonal best win. Owned by Henry Conradt, America Ferrera ($32.40) is trained by Mike Ohol. The USTA Strategic Wagering Program guaranteed pool of $12,500 on the early Pick-5 wager turned out to be a boon for the night's handle. Aided by longshots America Ferrera ($32.40) and Tinker Taxi ($80.00), the $2 early Pick-5 combination of 4-2-2-4-7 paid $21,020 on the strength of $18,340 new money bet. The night's first race handled the most money ever wagered on a single race at Batavia Downs since OTB reopened it in 2002 and the overall handle for the night was up 27% over the same date last year with two less races on the card. "It was a great night at the windows for Batavia Downs on Wednesday" said Todd Haight, Director/General Manager of Live Racing. "We would like to thank the USTA and Chris Schick for partnering with us on the Strategic Wagering Program tonight and also Trackmaster for providing the free program pages that enhanced everyone's handicapping enjoyment." Kevin Cummings remains hot and led all drivers again tonight winning three races on the card. Batavia Downs would like to wish all our fans and patrons a very Happy Thanksgiving and look forward to seeing everyone back at the track when live racing resumes on Friday (Nov. 24) at 6 p.m.   By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

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