Day At The Track
Eliot dAmbri

Groupe winners on Cornulier program

January 19, 2020 - Saturday’s Cornulier harness racing program at Vincennes included several other groupe level races and some other interesting events. The Prix Roxane Griff (monte, purse 50,000€, 2175 meters, nine starters) began the “interesting” action with a quick 1.11kr clocked victory by 9/10 favorite Egao Jenilou (6g Village Mystic-Queen Jenilou) with Eric Raffin aboard for trainer Louis Baudron. He won for the ninth time in 26 career starts now for 272,460€ earned. 7/2 Dede de Montauren and 9/1 Daniel Bon trailed the winner to the line. The first groupe test was the Prix Bellino II (Gr. III, purse 80,000€, 2100 meters, 11 starters) and 5.5/1 Gimy du Pommereux (4m Coktail Jet-Noune du Pommereux) scored for Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic. The victory was his fourth in 12 career starts now for 132,810 in life earnings. 18/1 Gia Olmenhof (4f Ready Cash) rallied for second for Christophe Martens and 2/1 Girolamo (4m Uriel Speed) took third for Franck Ouvrie. Gimy du Pommereux The 80,000€ purse Prix de Mirande (Gr. III, 2700 meters, eight five year old starters) produced a 1.12kr timed victory for 3/2 odds Fire Cracker (5g Quaro-Urganza) for Eric Raffin at the lines for trainer Gregory Thorel. He scored for the eighth time in 24 appearances for career earnings of 191,200€. 1.1/1 favorite Fairplay d’Urzy (5m Ready Cash) and driver Jean Michel Bazire was second and 6/1 Foxtrot Sea (5m Olitro) was third for Cedrik Megissier. Fire Cracker The Gr. III Prix Michel Marcel Gougeon (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters, nine starters) saw 3.2/1 Eliot d’Ambri (6g Tipunch River-Rivale du Raleis) score for the hot teamster Eric Raffin. Race time was 1.14.9kr as the winner increased his career earnings to 196,380€. 2.8/1 Eclat de Gloire (6g Tiego d’Etang) was second for Loris Garcia and 10/1 Éclair du Mirel (6m Orlando Vici) and pilot Matthieu Abrivard took third money. Eliot d’Ambri Monte action resumed in the Prix Camille de Wazieres (Gr. II, purse 100,000€, 2175 meters, eight starters). 5.6/1 Gospel Pat (4m Uriel Speed-Namorosa) scored timed in 1.12.9kr for jockey David Thomain and trainer Philippe Allaire. This was his fifth career victory in 16 outings now for 174,050€ earned. 6.5/1 Gef de Play (4m Gazouillis) was second with Adrien Lamy in the irons for owner/trainer Franck Leblanc. 5.1/1 Gainsborough (4m Bird Parker) took third with Yoann Lebourgeois up. Gospel Pat   Thomas H. Hicks  

Bilibili, harness racing

Bilibili wins 650,000€ Prix du Calvados...again

The 5/10 favorite Bilibili (9m Niky-Quetty du Donjon) stalked the leaders and wore them down in late stretch to win the Prix de Cornulier (Gr. I International Monte, purse 650,000€ 2700 meters, 16 starters) for jockey Alexandre Abrivard clocked in 1.12.1kr off even fractions. Laurent Claude Abrivard trains the winner for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon as Bilibili repeated his 2019 victory and now has 14 career wins in 45 starts for 1,803,100€ earned. Roxane Grif was also a repeat winner in recent years (2015-16). The 17/1 Etoile e Bruyere (6f Kenor de Cosse) held second for Adrien Lamy and trainer Charles Dreux. Third was 14/1 Feeling Cash (5m Ready Cash-Royale Star) with Eric Raffin in the irons for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Carlos Lerner. The 75/1 Carla du Castelets and 31/1 Evangelina Blue completed the top five. The exact order Quinte+ top five payoff was 9.905.60 to 174 ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 5,808.430€ and over 11,937,000€ was wagered on the race.  To watch the replay, click here. The time of the race in kilometers was 1'12''1, which did not break last year’s record of 1'11''2, but it was still the 4th best time in the history of the race. Alexandre Abrivard signs a third victory in the Grand Prix de Cornulier, twenty days after being crowned Etrier d'Or for the second time. His trainer Laurent-Claude Abrivard won for the second time with the developer costume (he also won it as a jockey). For owner-breeder Jean-Pierre Barjon, this is a new triumph in one of the two biggest winter races at Paris-Vincennes, he too who saw his colors shine in the Grand Prix d'Amérique with Meaulnes of Corta . The Grand Prix d'Amérique whose 2020 edition is also on the horizon for next week. This time, the father and son Abrivards will be gathered around Excellent , winner of the Ténor de Baune Prize and candidate for the first places. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Girly Beco, harness racing

Groupe winners Saturday at Vincennes

Top groupe level action at Paris-Vincennes began this day with the Gr. II Prix de Pardieu (purse 100,000€, monte, 2175 meters, four year olds) and 14/1 Girly Beco (4f Tiego d’Etang-Verveine Gede) scored 1.12.7kr for jockey Guillaume Martin and trainer Michel Bezier. Herve Guain is the owner/breeder. The 26/1 Gloria Berry (4f Quaker Jet-Tequila Berry) was second with J.Y. Ricart in the irons for owner/trainer Jean Michel Bazire and 2.4/1 Gladys des Plaines (4f Opus Viervil) held third with Eric Raffin up. The co-feature this day was the Gr. III Prix de Brest (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap, European) with the outstanding victory to 50 meter handicapped and 4/10 favorite Cleangame (8g Ouragon de Celland-Red Bell) reined by trainer Jean Michel Bazire for owner J-M Rancoule. Cleangame was clocked in a quick 1.11.2kr to record his 33rd victory in 50 career starts, now for 1,269,720€ earned. He stormed home from far back to engage the leaders early in the lane in a furious finish to then hold off 20/1 and 25 meter handicapped Anzi des Liards (10g Look de Star) with Romain Derieux up. The 32/1 Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers) held third for Nicolas Bazire, trainer Jean Michel and owner Rancoule. 61/1 Carly Loulou (8f Gazouillis) and 89.1 Usain Henna (10m Super Light) completed the top five this Quinte+ event. The exact order Q+ payoff was 24,212.60€ to 42 winning ticketholders with the Q+ pool reaching 4,283,257€ and over 9,239,000€ was wagered on the race. Cleangame The Prix de Pornichet (purse 67,000€, monte, 2700 meters) saw 8.4/1 Bleu Ciel (9g Milord Drill-Quelle Action) win for Adrien Lamy and trainer Jean Morice timed in 1.12.8kr. The winner earned his 15th career victory in 90 starts now for 378,110€ earned. 5,8/1 Boston Terrie (9g Kesaco Phedo) was second ahead of 6.4/1 Cesar de Vrie (8g Magnificent Rodney). Bleu Ciel Sunday the monte champions will contest the Gr. I Prix de Cornulier for a total purse of 650,000€ and we will see if the 2019 winner Bilibili can repeat. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Dr. Paul F Spears, harness racing

How do we make a Trotting Derby winner?

Hungary’s National Trotting Breeders' Association continues its training series, which was launched in 2018, on January 28, 2020 (10:30 am at Kincsem Park), when a world-recognized harness racing breeder and executive, Dr. Paul F. ’’Pete” Spears, will direct our further training. Dr. Spears is President of the Standardbred Horse Sales Company, that conducts an annual early November auction in Harrisburg, PA ((USA), and formerly Vice President of Hanover Shoe Farms, practically growing up there, as his father worked as President and Treasurer of that world renown breeding facility. Dr. Spears has been very active in trot racing and breeding for several decades (his family’s Windsong Stable bred Hambletonian winner Windsong’s Legacy among many stakes winners), and his main expertise is genetics, pedigree analysis and auctions. Standardbred Horse Sales Company In his lecture, Dr. Spears will present examples of the possibility of pairing on related breeding and line breeding issues. He gives his opinion on the x-position and talks about the correct decisions that affect the effectiveness of breeding. There's great interest in this event. In view of this, please indicate your intention to participate by e-mail (ugeto@ugeto.com) as soon as possible. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

This Sunday Bilibili (9m Niky) faces 15 rivals in the harness racing monte classic Gr. I Grand Prix de Cornulier (purse 650,000€, 2850 meters) at Paris-Vincennes as he seeks to defend his 2019 victory. Traders. Fadu du Chene, Feeling Cash and the young mare Fleche Bourbon are in the field. Bilibili tuned up with a January 5th 1.13kr timed score in the Gr. II Prix du Calvados, a race he also won in 2018 and 2019. He won the Cornulier in 2019 clocked in 1.11.2kr, his best since a 1.10.5kr win in the 2017 Gr. I Prix I’Ile de France over the shorter 2175 meter distance. Jean Pierre Barjon bred and owns Bilibili that will have Alexandre Abrivard in the irons. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

The Grand Prix de Cornulier (monte, Gr.I International, 2700 meters, purse 650,000€) is set for Sunday and initially 29 horses were engaged in what is likely to be an 18 horse field. The well-regarded Bilibili, Fado du Chene and Traders are among the top prospects. Bilibili, trained by Laurent Claude Abrivard for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon, is a nine year old son of Niky and has proven to be an accomplished monte performer as he won the 2019 version of the Cornulier, the richest monte event, and has lifetime earnings of 1,510,600€. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Today’s superb Belgique harness racing program also had other groupe level events on the stage. The Prix de Riberac (Gr. IiI, 70,000€ purse, 2700 meters, 15 starters) saw 5/1 Garibaldi (4m Love You-Venitienne) score in 1.13.4kr for Jean Phillipe Monclin and owner Manuel Martinez. The winner recorded his fourth career victory in 11 starts now for 126,780€ earned. The winner joined the hunt with slightly over 500 meters remaining and was a decisive factor in the lane. 17/1 Gelati Cut (4m Coktail Jet) was second for Alexandre Abrivard, ahead of 27/1 Galaxie du Goutier (4f Kaisy Dream) with Clement Duvaldestin aboard. The Prix Association Nationale des Turfistes (purse 67,000€, 2100 meters autostart) saw the turf writers on hand to make the winners presentation to 5.9/1 odds Belle Louise Mabon (9f Derby du Giute), the 1.11.9kr timed victorious trainee of breeder/owner/trainer Yves Dreaux. Eri Raffin was the pilot as Belle Louise won for the eighth time in 58 starts now for 358,980€ in life earnings. “Louise” was there to help receive the winners’ congratulations. The 7/10 favorite Charmeause Royale was second for owner/trainer/driver Matthieu Abrivard ahead of Black Jack From reined by Jean Michel Bazire. Belle Louise Mabon The Prix Djerid (monte Gr. III, purse 90,000€, 2200 meters, eight European starters) completed today’s groupe action and in this one the 1.12.1kr winner was the game 5.2/1 Daida de Vandel (7f Real de Lou - Gallia de Vandel) handled by jockey Alexandre Abrivard for trainer Laurent Claude Abrivard. It was her 10 th career victory in 42 starts and her raised lifetime earnings to 402,580€. Eroa du Chene (6m Un Amour d’Haufor) was second with P.Ph. Ploquin in the irons for trainer Julien La Mer and owner Claude Guedj. 1.9/1 favorite Curly (8g Rolling d’Heripre) took third for jockey Matthieu Abrivard and trainer Thierry Duvaldestin. Daida de Vandel With the day complete some analysts foresee an Amerique lineup that might look something like shown below. Here the bold print horses are those already qualified. Those with a question mark are just that, unknowns at this moment. Several of the outsiders are lifetime winners of over a million euro. It appears that the Cornulier (January 19) is not factored in below.   Thomas H. Hicks

Belina Josselyn (9f Love You-Lezira Josselyn) took today’s Prix de Belgique (Gr. II International, purse 110,000€, 2850 meters, 15 starters) reined by her trainer Jean Michel Bazire for owner/breeder Yvan Bernard. Belina, the 2019 Prix d’Amerique winner, won for the 22nd time in 71 career starts now for 2,335,470€ earned. She emerged from second tier positioning with over 500 meters remaining and covered her last 500 in 1.10kr. She was off at 2.5/1 odds and bested 2.8/1 Enino du Pommereux (6m Coktail Jet) with Matthieu Abrivard up for trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic that was clocked also in 1.12.6kr. The 62/1 Davidson du Pont (7m Pacha du Pont) was third with Franck Ouvrie up for trainer JMB and owner/breeder Albert Rayon. 23/1 Erming d’Oliverie (6f Scipion du Goutier) was fourth for pilot Adrian Lamy and trainer Franck Leblanc. The next three to the line were 35/1 Delia du Pommeruex (7f Niky), 62/1 Looking Superb (7m Orlando Vici), also a JMP trainee, and 6/1 Uza Josselyn (9f Love You) that rallied after being shuffled almost to the end, She was clocked in 1.12.9kr that illustrates the competitiveness of this field. To see the race replay, click here. Belina Josselyn and Enino du Pommereux join the 10 horses previously qualified in the six qualifying races leading to the Prix d'Amerique that began in 1920 and has been raced in each year thereafter except two years during WWII when Vincennes was used as a military camp. The Prix d'Amerique (created to honor America’s efforts to save France in World War I) to be held January 26 will have 18 starters with invites to follow the 12 now qualified. One could be the January 19 Prix du Cornulier winner, this the Gr. I 650,000€ purse monte classic. Today’s Prix de Belgique was the Q+ race of the day with a special 1,000,000€ tireline (bonus). The exact order payoff was 105,369.20€ paid to 20 winning ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 5,896,091€ and over 11,669,000€ was wagered on the race (all wagers). Havana d’Aurcy takes Prix Gelinotte Wedge Institiute Groupe action began this day with the Gr. II Prix Gelinotte Wedge Institute (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, three-year olds) and the 9/10 favorite Havana d’Aurcy (3f Royal Dream-Avila) prevailed handily for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and owner Cyril Lelarge. Havana scored for the fourth time in eight career starts now for131,700€ earned. Race time was 1.16.2kr. The 44/1 Hora Beji (3f Ni Ho Ped d’Ombree) was second for Franck Nivard and 4.4/1 Heroine Darling (3f Brillantissime-Rapid Darling) rallied nicely to be third for pilot Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Kevin Vanderschelden and owner Jean Pierre Dubois. Of note, yesterday in the US the Dubois champion mare Crys Dream foaled a Tactical Landing filly. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Today at Bergsaker, Sweden was the Zoogins STL Gold, raced over 2140 meters autostart, for a purse to the winner of 150,000SEK. Elian Web (9g Like A Prayer-EL Dolly-Conway Hall), off at 4.14/1, scored easily on the front end timed in 1.12.4kr, with Jorma Kontio at the lines. Melkko Katja trains this now winner 23 times in 59 starts for 6,275,867SEK earned. The 1.28/1 favorite Propulsion (9m Muscle Hill-Danae), handled by Orjan Kihlstrom for trainer Daniel Reden, was second in what was to be a prep for the Prix d’Amerique. He was clocked in 1.12.6kr after briefly challenging the leader on the final lap. He fell back, dropped to the pocket and trailed the winner home in the lane. 80/1 Narold Vox (11g Orlando Vici) was third for Mats Djuse. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Helgafell (3m Charly du Noyer-Baaria) began groupe action this day by winning the Gr. II Prix Maurice de Gheest (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, 10 three year old starters) at Paris-Vincennes. Eric Raffin teamed the 5/10 favorite for trainer Phillipe Allaire and Ecurie Normandy Spirit. He won for the sixth time in seven career starts now for 182,900€ earned. Marial Turbiaux bred this winner that scored in 1.16.1kr. 4.8/1 Heaven’s Pride (3m Brillantissime-Queenly Pride) took second for pilot David Thomain and trainer Allaire, followed by 10/1 Holzarte Vedaquais (3m Brillantissime-Chikka Vedaquaise) that Francois Lagadeuc drove for trainer/owner Allaire. Heartbreaker One was fourth for Bjorn Goop. The Quinte+ Gr II Prix de Croix (purse 100,000€, 2850 meters, 13 European starters) brought out some top five-year olds in that class and victory was earned by 9/1 Feliciano (5m Ready Cash-Ravenella). David Thomain was the pilot for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Ecurie des Charmes. The 1.13.4kr timed winner scored for the 10th time in 30 career starts now for 474,340€ earned.  The 29/1 Falco de Laurma (5m Uniclove-Rangoon) took second with Franck Nivard up for trainer Thierry Duvaldestin with third to 5.6/1 Fleche du Yucca (5f Prodigious-Vincenza) handled by Jean Philippe Dubois for his Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. 90/1 Florida Sport (5f Tornado Bello) and 22/1 Fashion Queen (5f Ready Cash) completed the top five. The exact order Q+ payoff was 20,833€ paid to 31 winning ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 4,414,116€ and over 9.304,000€ was wagered on the race (all wagering pools). The Gr. III Prix du Forez (purse 80,000€, 2700 meters, 10 European starters) is an opportiunity to impress and perhaps gain an Amerique berth, no guarantees however. J-M Bazire send out a flock of starters and he won driving his 6.7/1 trainee Valokaja Hindo (9m Great Challenger-Hindo Enghave) to the 1.11.9kr victory. Hindo, owned in Norway by Eirik Djuve, won for 11th time in 25 appearances in France to raise his life earnings to 582,920€. He stormed home from the backfield to score over five rivals also timed in 1.11.9kr. 5.5/1 Dorgoss de Guez (7g Romcok de Guez-Lady Fromentro) was second for Nicolas Bazire and trainer JMB, ahead of 5/1 Tessy d’Ete (8f Ganymede-Love Me Tender) reined by Franck Nivard. 118/1 Alamo du Goutier was fourth for owner/trainer/driver Vincent Hebert and fifth was 9/2 pacesetter Mindyourvalue WF (7g Hovding Lavec) for Yoann Lebourgeois. Dreambreaker and Chica de Joudes completed the top seven with nine horses clocked in 1.12.1kr or better. Hindo’s pedigree is 100% standardbred and the sire Great Challenger was a US$160,000 yearling. His dam was registered in Denmark and is by Victor Victor from a Buckfinder mare. Late in the card in the Prix de Bois-Guillaume (purse 33,000€, 2100 meters autostart) the great veteran horseman Pierre Levesque was in the winner’s circle after teaming 8.5/1 Furyo (5g Quaker Jet-Laliflo Gede) to a 1.13.2kr victory. He owns and bred this now four-time winner that Thomas Levesque conditions. Levesque drives sparingly now but what a career he has enjoyed as driver and trainer. As driver he won the Prix d’Amerique in 2007-2008 with trainee Offshore Dream and with trainee Meaulnes du Corta he won the 2010 Prix de France, 2009-2010 Grand Criterium de Vitesse with Meaulnes and the 2006 Criterium Continental with that horse. As trainer he also won the Prix d’Amerique with Mealunes plus the 2009 Prix de France, the 2005 Criterium 5 Ans and the 2004 Prix de Selection. Meaulnes du Corta retired with 2,786,760€ earned and Offshore Dream won 1,992,024€. With the victory today Pierre Levesque has 2,317 driving wins in 15,283 starts (and 1,511 wins as trainer). He has won over 100 races in five seasons. by Thomas H. HIcks, for Harnesslink

Jean Michel Bazire teamed his trainee Feydeau Seven (5m Redeo Josselyn-Unanime Seven) to a 1.13.9kr victory in today’s Quinte+ Prix de Mauriac (purse 53,000€, 2850 meters, 16 starters) at Paris-Vincennes, his ninth career in 18 starts now for 175,010€ earned. He was off as the 1.9/1 favorite. 33/1 Fiorentina Somolli (5f Love You) was second for Matthieu Abrivard and 31/1 Flaya Kalouma (5f Royal Dream) took third for Gabriel Angel Pou Pou. The 28/1 Flight Dynamic (5m Scarlet Knight) was fourth for Franck Ouvrie ahead of 90/1 Borups Senator (5m SJs Caviar) with Pierre Vercruysse up. The outsiders set up an exact order Q+ payoff of 165,693€ paid to four ticketholders. The Q+ pool this day was 3,395,049€ and the total of all wagering pools on this race exceeded 7,578,000€. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Sunday at Paris-Vincennes is the fourth “B”  race leading to the 900,000€ Prix d’Amerique 2020, it’s the Gr. II Grand Prix de Belgique for 110,000€ purse and raced over 2850 meters. The harness racing field includes the 2019 Elitloppet winner Dijon, 2019 Prix d'Amerique winner Belina Josselyn and a few that have already qualified – Looking Superb, Delia du Pommereux and Davidson du Pont. Others that need a good showing are Enino du Pommereux, Carat Williams and Uza Josselyn, the latter coming in off two fourth place finishes in the last two “B” races. Qualifiers (10) to date for the 2020 Grand Prix d’Amerique include: GP Bretagne – Davidson du Pont, Chica de Joudes, Looking Superb GP Bourbonnais – Delia de Pommereux, Bold Eagle, Billie de Montfort GP Bourgogne – Billie de Montfort (previously qualified), Bahia Quesnot, Vivid Wise As Criterium Continental – Face Time Bourbon Prix Tenor de Baune – Excellent Amerique 2020 Promo https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=3xXBtbY56Ko&feature=emb_logo We’re heading to a highly competitive Prix d'Amerique the last Sunday this month. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Today’s Prix de la Cote d’Azur (Gr. III International, purse 120,000€, 2900 meters distance handicap, 16 starters) at Cagnes sur Mer in France saw 3.7/1 Elsa de Belfonds (6f Tornado Bello-Talfa) score off a 25-meter handicap. She was away on the lead for trainer/driver Nicolas Ensch, then yielded to the pocket before escaping in the lane to draw clear. Ecurie Thomas Levesque owns this now 11-time career winner for 353,690€ earned. Race time was 1.14.2kr. The 2.7/1 favorite and 50-meter handicapped Earl Simon (6m Prodigious-Tindrana) was a game second for Ecurie Skytten, trainer Jarmo Niskanen and pilot Franck Ouvrie. The 31/1 Black d’Arjeanc (9g Prince d’Espace-Perle de Riviere), penalized 25 meters, was third with Eric Raffin up for trainer Nicolas Ensch. 50-meter handicapped Voltaire Gifont (6m Quaker Jet-Realm of Fancy) was fourth with trainer Pietro Gubellini up on this 88/1 outsider. The 44/1 Beffe Am (9g Enjoy Lavec) was fifth for Franck Marty. This race was the Quinte+ race of the day and the exact order winning tickets paid 95,586.00€ to six recipients. The Q+ pool was 3,716,532€ and the total of all pools on this race exceeded 8,091,000€. Yesterday at Cagnes sur Mer three year olds contested the Prix de la Cote Saint Andre (purse 18,000€, 2160 meters autostart) and it went to Hawai Island (3f Bold Eagle-Viva Island-Goetmals Wood-Island Dream) with Eric Raffin up for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Dubois and trainer Kevin Vanderschelden. This was her second career victory and now she has earned 14,450€. Hidden Face (3f Brillantissime-Conquette A Deux) was second for trainer/driver Nicolas Ensch for Ecurie le Tremont. Jean Pierre Dubois also bred this one. Hers and Mine (3f Bold Eagle-A Nous Deux) was third for Loris Garcia at the lines for breeder/owner JBD and trainer Vanderschelden. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

On January 3, 2020  the annual Kincsem Park trotting new yeawr festival, the Ugetoszilveszter 2020 was quite an entertainment event for the whole family with food, beverage, music, disco, petting zoo for the kids and of course the New Years Eve celebration and harness racing live program. The event also serves as an awards ceremony for the seasons leaders in the trots, gallop and greyhound categories. The very large crowd was greeted to a superb trots program with the featutred races won by Maugli (3m El Nino) and Take Me Home (7g Let’s Go). Maugli was impressive and now a winner in four of his last five starts and his 2020 four year old campaign should be one to watch. With the December 31 results, the 2019 trotting leaders are shown below. Special congrats are in order to Veljko Mazsity, Hico istallo and Kabala Menes Kft. for a sensational year and same to a host of others. Trot Leaders Horses Dash wins Zeal di Girifalco - 8 wins Zolta - 8 wins Purse earnings Zseneröz - 10.340.000 HUF Trainers Dash wins Laszlo Kolozsi – 33 wins Veljko Mazsity – 33 wins Purse earnings Csaba Lakatos– 18.581.000 HUF 25 wins Imre Fazekas – 18,485,000 HUF 30 wins Drivers Dash wins Veljko Mazsity – 33 wins Ferenc Nagy II – 22 wins Laszlo Kolozsi – 22 wins. The attached photo gallery is from New Years Eve at Kincsem Park. Maugli (3m El Nino) Janko Sagaj up Take Me Home (7g Let’s Go) and pilot Joze Sagaj The Kincsem Park program, photos of the day and comments from attendees on December 31 tells a great story about promotion, event execution and how to entertain children and families. Great expeiences help build ongoing customer support in this and any business.  Program: https://kincsempark.hu/data/versenyprogram/2019/versenyprogram_2019_12_31.pdf\  Congrats to the management of Kincsem Park (Istvan Pecsi) and Ugeto.com for a superb season and for making Ugetoszilveszter successful. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

The Prix de Lille (purse 80,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 16 starters) was the Quinte+ race of the day at Paris-Vincennes and the upper class field was dominated by Jean Michel Bazire trainees. JMB won the event driving 8/10 favorite Dorgos de Guez (7g Romcok de Guez-Lady Fromentro) to a 1.11.2kr score. He was near the fast fractions throughout and took the lead at about the halfway mark from Orlando Jet. Dorgos now has 20 career wins and 520,180€ earned. The 3.9/1 Colonel (8g Goetmals Wood-Royale Star) was a rallying second for Nicolas Bazire, trainer JMB and owner Ecurie des Charmes. Third was JMB trainee and 21/1 Dreambreaker (7g Offshore Dream-Brooke Boko) for Alexandre Abrivard. 49/1 Clif du Pomereux and 24/1 Ange de Lune completed the top five and the exact order Q+ payoff was 3,594.90€ to 491 winning tickets. The Q+ pool was 5,716,595€ and over 11,362,000 was wagered on the race. Four year olds were on stage for the Gr. II Prix de Tonnac-Villeneuve (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, eight starters) with upset victory to 8.7/1 Green Grass (4f Bold Eagle-Tootsie Smiling). Mathieu Mottier piloted the winner for trainer Sebastien Guarato and owner Sebastien Dewulf. Frederic Brouilloux bred the now eight time winner for 405,400€ earned. Race time was 1.14.1kr off slow, rated fractions. The 8/10 favorite Gu d’Heripre (4m Coktail Jet-Vedetta d’Heripre) was a very game second with Franck Nivard up for trainer Philippe Billard. 32/1 Gamble River (4m Un Mec d’Heripre) was third for Matthieu Abrivard and trainer Guarato. 4.8/1 Gotland (4m Ready Cash-Sanawa), the early head of this class, was fourth for Eric Raffin and owner/trainer Philippe Allaire. 11/1 Gallant Way (4m Ready Cash-Queen Flore) was fifth for trainer Allaire and pilot David Thomain. The afternoon’s highlight was the Gr. II monte Prix du Calvados (purse 130,000€, 2850 meters, International eligibles) and veteran Bilibili (9m Niky-Quetty du Bonjon) rallied late to score in 1.13kr as the even-money favorite. The victory was his 13th in a storied career that has produced earnings of 1,510,600€, and this win ensures a place in the 650,000€ purse Prix de Cornulier a week before the Prix d’Amerique. Bilibili was ridden by Alexandre Abrivard for trainer L.Cl. Abrivard and breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon, now the LeTrot President. Bilibili won this race in 2019 (timed in 1.12.4kr) and 2018 and he finished second in 2017. He also won the Prix de Cournulier in 2019 timed in 1.11.2kr and he was third in the monte classic in 2017 and 2018. Today the 9/1 Bilooka du Boscail (9f Look de Star) was a super game second with Matthieu Abrivard in the irons. 9/1 Etore de Bruyere (6f Kenor de Cosse) took third for Adrian Lamy. 14/1 Catalogne was fourth for Mathieu Mottier ahead of Evening Star. Today’s early afternoon Prix de Vic Sur Cere (purse 59,000€, 2800 meters, European eligibles) went to 1.14.5kr timed Short In Cash (6m Ready Cash-Shorthanded Sallyt-Lindy Lane) as he rallied strongly in the lane for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop for Stall Nikkanen Oy. This is a nice horse and the victory raised his career earnings to 165,030€. The dam’s pedigree follows. The Bucket List F (6m Raja Mirchi-Global Keepsake) was second with Franck Ouvrie up. Speedy Face (6m Joke Face) was third with Dominik Locqueneux up for trainer Adrian Kolgjini.   Shorthanded Sally (SE) (104 0,80 +12) m, 2006 1.16,4v 1.14,0a kr 170,434 37 2-5-2 Lindy Lane (US) (106 1,00) 1993 1.10,1a kr 5,994,283 21 11-3-3 At 2, Winner of Valley Victory, William Wellwood. At 3, Winner of American-National, Stanley Dancer Trot, second in Hambletonian. Valley Victory (US) (109 0,98) 1986 At 2, Winner of Breeders' Crown. At 3, Winner of Yonkers Trot. Baltic Speed (US) Speedy Somolli (US) Speedy Crown (US) Somolli (US) Sugar Frosting (US) Carlisle (US) Karen's Choice (US) Valley Victoria (US) Bonefish (US) Nevele Pride (US) Exciting Speed (US) Victorious Lou (US) Noble Victory (US) Lou Sidney (US) Lindiliana (US) 1988 Sold at Kentucky Standardbred Sale 1989 for 110,000 USD. Speedy Crown (US) Speedy Scot (US) Speedster (US) Scotch Love (US) Missile Toe (US) Florican (US) Worth a Plenty (US) Petrolianna (US) Texas (US) Super Bowl (US) Elma (US) Victoria Regina (US) Speedy Rodney (US) Victory Prize (US) Ottens Tea (SE) (94 0,79 +19) 1995 1.12,5v 1.12,7a kr 1,010,800 118 14-9-13 Texas (US) (93 1,00) 1974 1.12,0a kr 1,612,940 34 8-6-8 At 3, Winner of Kentucky Futurity, second in Hambletonian, third in Stanley Dancer Trot. Super Bowl (US) Star's Pride (US) Worthy Boy (US) Stardrift (US) Pillow Talk (US) Rodney (US) Bewitch (US) Elma (US) Hickory Smoke (US) Titan Hanover (US) Misty Hanover (US) Cassin Hanover (US) Hoot Mon (US) Goddess Hanover (US) Taroka (SE) (82 0,90) 1980 Tarok (DK) Pay Dirt (US) Florican (US) Impish (US) Tina Virup (DK) Ax Frisco (DK) Coboco (DK) Will Me (SE) Near Me (US) Star's Pride (US) Time Me (US) Wilma Will (SE) Earl's Mr Will (US) Scotchburn (SE) by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

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January 19, 2020 - Saturday’s Cornulier harness racing program at Vincennes included several other groupe level races and some other interesting events. The Prix Roxane Griff (monte, purse 50,000€, 2175 meters, nine starters) began the “interesting” action with a quick 1.11kr clocked victory by 9/10 favorite Egao Jenilou (6g Village Mystic-Queen Jenilou) with Eric Raffin aboard for trainer Louis Baudron. He won for the ninth time in 26 career starts now for 272,460€ earned. 7/2 Dede de Montauren and 9/1 Daniel Bon trailed the winner to the line. The first groupe test was the Prix Bellino II (Gr. III, purse 80,000€, 2100 meters, 11 starters) and 5.5/1 Gimy du Pommereux (4m Coktail Jet-Noune du Pommereux) scored for Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic. The victory was his fourth in 12 career starts now for 132,810 in life earnings. 18/1 Gia Olmenhof (4f Ready Cash) rallied for second for Christophe Martens and 2/1 Girolamo (4m Uriel Speed) took third for Franck Ouvrie. Gimy du Pommereux The 80,000€ purse Prix de Mirande (Gr. III, 2700 meters, eight five year old starters) produced a 1.12kr timed victory for 3/2 odds Fire Cracker (5g Quaro-Urganza) for Eric Raffin at the lines for trainer Gregory Thorel. He scored for the eighth time in 24 appearances for career earnings of 191,200€. 1.1/1 favorite Fairplay d’Urzy (5m Ready Cash) and driver Jean Michel Bazire was second and 6/1 Foxtrot Sea (5m Olitro) was third for Cedrik Megissier. Fire Cracker The Gr. III Prix Michel Marcel Gougeon (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters, nine starters) saw 3.2/1 Eliot d’Ambri (6g Tipunch River-Rivale du Raleis) score for the hot teamster Eric Raffin. Race time was 1.14.9kr as the winner increased his career earnings to 196,380€. 2.8/1 Eclat de Gloire (6g Tiego d’Etang) was second for Loris Garcia and 10/1 Éclair du Mirel (6m Orlando Vici) and pilot Matthieu Abrivard took third money. Eliot d’Ambri Monte action resumed in the Prix Camille de Wazieres (Gr. II, purse 100,000€, 2175 meters, eight starters). 5.6/1 Gospel Pat (4m Uriel Speed-Namorosa) scored timed in 1.12.9kr for jockey David Thomain and trainer Philippe Allaire. This was his fifth career victory in 16 outings now for 174,050€ earned. 6.5/1 Gef de Play (4m Gazouillis) was second with Adrien Lamy in the irons for owner/trainer Franck Leblanc. 5.1/1 Gainsborough (4m Bird Parker) took third with Yoann Lebourgeois up. Gospel Pat   Thomas H. Hicks  
The 5/10 favorite Bilibili (9m Niky-Quetty du Donjon) stalked the leaders and wore them down in late stretch to win the Prix de Cornulier (Gr. I International Monte, purse 650,000€ 2700 meters, 16 starters) for jockey Alexandre Abrivard clocked in 1.12.1kr off even fractions. Laurent Claude Abrivard trains the winner for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon as Bilibili repeated his 2019 victory and now has 14 career wins in 45 starts for 1,803,100€ earned. Roxane Grif was also a repeat winner in recent years (2015-16). The 17/1 Etoile e Bruyere (6f Kenor de Cosse) held second for Adrien Lamy and trainer Charles Dreux. Third was 14/1 Feeling Cash (5m Ready Cash-Royale Star) with Eric Raffin in the irons for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Carlos Lerner. The 75/1 Carla du Castelets and 31/1 Evangelina Blue completed the top five. The exact order Quinte+ top five payoff was 9.905.60 to 174 ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 5,808.430€ and over 11,937,000€ was wagered on the race.  To watch the replay, click here. The time of the race in kilometers was 1'12''1, which did not break last year’s record of 1'11''2, but it was still the 4th best time in the history of the race. Alexandre Abrivard signs a third victory in the Grand Prix de Cornulier, twenty days after being crowned Etrier d'Or for the second time. His trainer Laurent-Claude Abrivard won for the second time with the developer costume (he also won it as a jockey). For owner-breeder Jean-Pierre Barjon, this is a new triumph in one of the two biggest winter races at Paris-Vincennes, he too who saw his colors shine in the Grand Prix d'Amérique with Meaulnes of Corta . The Grand Prix d'Amérique whose 2020 edition is also on the horizon for next week. This time, the father and son Abrivards will be gathered around Excellent , winner of the Ténor de Baune Prize and candidate for the first places. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink
Top groupe level action at Paris-Vincennes began this day with the Gr. II Prix de Pardieu (purse 100,000€, monte, 2175 meters, four year olds) and 14/1 Girly Beco (4f Tiego d’Etang-Verveine Gede) scored 1.12.7kr for jockey Guillaume Martin and trainer Michel Bezier. Herve Guain is the owner/breeder. The 26/1 Gloria Berry (4f Quaker Jet-Tequila Berry) was second with J.Y. Ricart in the irons for owner/trainer Jean Michel Bazire and 2.4/1 Gladys des Plaines (4f Opus Viervil) held third with Eric Raffin up. The co-feature this day was the Gr. III Prix de Brest (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap, European) with the outstanding victory to 50 meter handicapped and 4/10 favorite Cleangame (8g Ouragon de Celland-Red Bell) reined by trainer Jean Michel Bazire for owner J-M Rancoule. Cleangame was clocked in a quick 1.11.2kr to record his 33rd victory in 50 career starts, now for 1,269,720€ earned. He stormed home from far back to engage the leaders early in the lane in a furious finish to then hold off 20/1 and 25 meter handicapped Anzi des Liards (10g Look de Star) with Romain Derieux up. The 32/1 Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers) held third for Nicolas Bazire, trainer Jean Michel and owner Rancoule. 61/1 Carly Loulou (8f Gazouillis) and 89.1 Usain Henna (10m Super Light) completed the top five this Quinte+ event. The exact order Q+ payoff was 24,212.60€ to 42 winning ticketholders with the Q+ pool reaching 4,283,257€ and over 9,239,000€ was wagered on the race. Cleangame The Prix de Pornichet (purse 67,000€, monte, 2700 meters) saw 8.4/1 Bleu Ciel (9g Milord Drill-Quelle Action) win for Adrien Lamy and trainer Jean Morice timed in 1.12.8kr. The winner earned his 15th career victory in 90 starts now for 378,110€ earned. 5,8/1 Boston Terrie (9g Kesaco Phedo) was second ahead of 6.4/1 Cesar de Vrie (8g Magnificent Rodney). Bleu Ciel Sunday the monte champions will contest the Gr. I Prix de Cornulier for a total purse of 650,000€ and we will see if the 2019 winner Bilibili can repeat. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  
Hungary’s National Trotting Breeders' Association continues its training series, which was launched in 2018, on January 28, 2020 (10:30 am at Kincsem Park), when a world-recognized harness racing breeder and executive, Dr. Paul F. ’’Pete” Spears, will direct our further training. Dr. Spears is President of the Standardbred Horse Sales Company, that conducts an annual early November auction in Harrisburg, PA ((USA), and formerly Vice President of Hanover Shoe Farms, practically growing up there, as his father worked as President and Treasurer of that world renown breeding facility. Dr. Spears has been very active in trot racing and breeding for several decades (his family’s Windsong Stable bred Hambletonian winner Windsong’s Legacy among many stakes winners), and his main expertise is genetics, pedigree analysis and auctions. Standardbred Horse Sales Company In his lecture, Dr. Spears will present examples of the possibility of pairing on related breeding and line breeding issues. He gives his opinion on the x-position and talks about the correct decisions that affect the effectiveness of breeding. There's great interest in this event. In view of this, please indicate your intention to participate by e-mail (ugeto@ugeto.com) as soon as possible. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

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