Teemu Keskitalo (Finland)

World championship for Amateur Drivers 2016

Next Friday September 2nd and Saturday 3rd in the Hungarian historic track of Kincsem Park in the capital city of Budapest will be held the FEGAT World Championship 2016 for harness racing amateur drivers organized by the flag of the FEGAT (European federation of amateurs drivers) in cooperation with the Hungarian amateur drivers Club the “Magyar Amatör Ügetö Hajtók Egyesülete”.    The championship will be played on two race days, with the participation of drivers from 12 different nationalities (4 women & 8 men) who will drive in 6 scoring races each.    The most important novelty in the World Cup will be the present for first time in the history of an Argentinian driver representative, in this case Mr. Leonardo Agusti, driver with more than 1.250 wins in his home country and at same time President of the Argentinian Breeders Association.    Other notables in the field will be the former World Cup Champion in 2008 in the USA, the Kiwi driver Mr. Gavin Cook, formers European Champions, the Finnish Teemu Keskitalo (Norway 2015) and Spaniard Miquel Vich Capó (Czech Republic 2012) and the new Yankee amateur driver star Hannah Miller. Will complete the field the Aussie Barbara Barry, Belgium Piet Van Pollaert, Czech Republic Alle Johannes Marinus Loman, Dannish Bitter Jensen, Hungarian Andrea Nagyvary, Italian Mirko Marini and Swiss Jean Claude Gardaz.     The official link of the FEGAT World Cup 2016 is http://www.fegat.info/competition_cat2016/world-championship-in-hungary/   The official twitter of the FEGAT is @fegattrotting   The link to follow the championship in streaming: http://www.kincsempark.hu/index.php/live-stream-ug   FEGAT 

Bettors Fire winning at Gloucester Park

Bettors Fire ready to strike

Brilliant seven-year-old Bettors Fire has returned to harness racing as good as ever and he looks set to become only the fourth pacer in the 66-year-history of the August Cup to be a multiple winner of the group 3 event by proving too strong for his rivals in the $35,000 Westralian August Cup at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The winner of $465,000 Bettors Fire, trained and driven by Kyle Harper, overcame a wide draw to score an effortless last-to-first victory in the 2015 August Cup. This week he is much more favourably drawn at barrier No. 4 on the front line in the 2536m event. Harper produced Bettors Fire in great shape for a 1730m sprint at Gloucester Park last Friday week and the New Zealand-bred gelding was most impressive at his first appearance since finishing second to Cyamach in the Lord Mayor’s Cup on January 29. In his return to racing the Bettor's Delight gelding started from the outside barrier and raced in last position in the field of nine until Harper gave him his head with 250m to travel. The gelding was taken five wide on the home turn before he finished with a devastating burst to be second, a half-head behind Cyamach, rating 1.54.3. In last year’s August Cup, Bettors Fire was a 5/4 on favourite from out wide at barrier eight. Harper restrained him to the rear and he was still 12th and last with two laps to travel. Harper switched him three wide at the 1000m mark and Bettors Fire dashed into sixth position, three wide with cover, at the bell, before he took the lead on the home turn and coasted to an easy victory over the pacemaker Tuxedo Tour. The only other pacers to have won the August Cup more than once have been Tavis (1975 and 1976), Zakara (1991-92-93-94) and Shattering Class (1998 and 1999). Shattering Class was driven by Harper’s father Lindsay, who also won the August Cup with Ghost (2001) and Digger of Fortune (2003). Champion trainer Gary Hall sen., who prepared Zakara for his final three August Cup victories, has also been successful with Im Themightyquinn (2010) and Northview Punter (2014). He has three runners this year --- Cyamach (barrier six), Waylade (nine) and Run Oneover (No. 3 on the back line). Run Oneover, to be driven by Clint Hall, trailed the pacemaker Northern Assassin in a 2130m event last Friday night before he got off the pegs 500m from home and dashed forward to take a narrow lead 40m from the post. But he was beaten by a half-head by the fast-finishing Copagrin. Cyamach finished fifth and Waylade was 11th across the line. “Run Oneover is my best chance,” said Hall sen. “He got a flat tyre in the late stages and that didn’t help, while the other two were a bit disappointing.” Copagrin has returned to racing after a spell in fine fettle for owner-trainer John Guagliardo and reinsman Morgan Woodley. The WA-bred seven-year-old was seventh with 450m to travel before he flew home from fifth at the 100m to snatch victory from Run Oneover last week. He will start from barrier five on Friday night and will have many admirers. Five-year-old Libertybelle Midfrew, a winner of 16 races and $567,147, has the distinct advantage of starting from the No. 1 barrier as the only mare in the race under the preferential barrier draw. She has been unplaced at her past five starts, including her first-up tenth behind Ideal Justice over 2130m last week when she was restrained from a wide barrier and was always well back. Trained by Mike Reed, Libertybelle Midfrew will be driven by Mark Reed, who won the August Cup with Another Party in 2000 and Tricky Vic in 2005. Mike Reed trained and drove Manageable for his win in the 1989 August Cup. The in-form Phoenix Warrior, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, fared poorly in the draw and will start out wide at barrier eight. He will be driven for the first time by champion reinsman Chris Lewis, whose only success in the August Cup was behind the Andrew de Campo-trained Dasher VC, the 2/1 favourite who defeated Cromac Johnny and Sneakyn Down Under in 2012. Ken Casellas

Smalltownthrowdown and Dan Daley

Smalltownthrowdown ready for showdown

Freehold, NJ --- Smalltownthrowdown is ready for a small-track harness racing showdown. The Dan Daley-trained 3-year-old is among nine horses entered in Saturday’s (Aug. 27) $40,000 Yonkers Trot elimination at Yonkers Raceway. The gelding has raced four times this season on half-mile tracks, such as Yonkers, and won three. He heads to the elimination off back-to-back victories on half-mile ovals in New York Sire Stakes action. Smalltownthrowdown will start the elimination from post two with Daley driving and is 9-2 on the morning line, the third choice behind Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder at 5-2 and Lagerfeld at 4-1. The top eight finishers advance to the $500,000 Yonkers Trot final Sept. 3 at Yonkers. The winner of the Yonkers Trot, which follows the Hambletonian as the second jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown, will receive an invitation to the $1 million Yonkers International Trot on Oct. 15. “His game is a half-mile track,” said Daley, who trains Smalltownthrowdown for wife Ann-Mari, James Crawford IV, Donald Brenner, and Richard Lombardo. “He seems to trot that (size) track as good as anywhere. A big track doesn’t really pick him up. “To step up against these horses, I don’t know. But he’s been super sharp, so we figured we’d take a shot.” Smalltownthrowdown, his name inspired by a country song, is a son of stallion Cash Hall out of the mare Ann’s Promise. He was purchased for $21,000 at the 2014 SUNY Morrisville Sale under the name Branchport. His half-sister Annies List was a multiple winner on the New York Sire Stakes circuit and earned $260,083 lifetime. “He was my favorite pick at Morrisville,” Daley said. “He’s a Cash Hall. Not many are high on them, but I’ve been lucky with them. He just had a great look. I knew his sister was a really good filly the year before.” Smalltownthrowdown was winless in his first eight races last year, although he hit the board six times including a second-place finish in the New York Sire Stakes championship at Yonkers. He then won back-to-back races, including the Simpson Memorial Stakes at Vernon Downs, to finish the season. This year, the gelding has won five of 12 races and pushed his career earnings to $278,760. He won in a career-best 1:54.4 on Aug. 9 at Saratoga in a division of the New York Sire Stakes and followed up with a 1:56.2 triumph in the NYSS at Monticello on Monday. “It took him a little while to learn to be controllable and do everything right, but he’s turned out to be a nice horse,” Daley said. “He was really sharp at Monticello, so we put him in here and hope we can get some money.” The field for the Yonkers Trot elimination, in post order, is Iron Mine Bucky, Smalltownthrowdown, Marion Marauder, Lagerfeld, Steed, Cufflink Hanover, Celebrity Express, Hititoutofthepark, and trailer Gleaming Memory. Marion Marauder, trained by Paula Wellwood, is bidding to add the second jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown to his list of accomplishments. The third jewel, the Kentucky Futurity, is Oct. 9 at Lexington’s Red Mile, but Marion Marauder is not eligible to the event. Supplemental entries, though, are permitted. There have been eight trotters to complete the Triple Crown sweep. The most recent was Glidemaster in 2006. Below are the post positions: PP-Horse-Sire-Driver-Trainer-Line 1. Iron Mine Bucky - Explosive Matter - George Dennis-Greg Haverstick-7/1 2. Smalltownthrowdown - Cash Hall - Dan Daley-Dan Daley-9/2  3. Marion Marauder - Muscle Hill - Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-5/2  4. Lagerfeld - Yankee Glide - Mark MacDonald-Jimmy Takter-4/1 5. Steed - Muscle Hill - Brian Sears-Richard Johnson-15/1 6. Cufflink Hanover - Andover Hall - Jason Bartlett-Chris Oakes-5/1 7. Celebrity Express - Andover Hall - John Campbell-Staffan Lind-20/1 8. Hititoutofthepark - Yankee Glide - Corey Callahan-John Butenschoen-12/1 9. Gleaming Memory - Muscle Massive - Ake Svanstedt-Thomas Milici-15/1 Saturday’s card at Yonkers also includes the $118,574 Hudson Trot for 3-year-old fillies, which finds Staffan Lind’s Celebrity Eventsy as the 3-2 morning line favorite, and the $109,050 Lady Maud for 3-year-old female pacers, where Newborn Sassy is the even-money choice. by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications

Officially Creek and driver Chris Page

Beaver scores triple in Ohio Sires Stakes

Northfield Park played host to eight $40,000 Ohio Sires Stakes for harness racing 2-year-old colts on Wednesday, August 24. Five divisions featuring 37 freshmen pacers and three divisions of 21 trotting youngsters prevailed over the evening's racing card. This was the fourth and final leg of the series and was the deciding factor for many youngsters seeking a starting berth in the $250,000 Championships, set for Sept. 3 at Northfield Park.   The Triumphant Caviar colt Fraser Ridge set a new track record clocking of 1:54 en route to winning the first OSS trotting division with Aaron Merriman at the lines. Trained and co-owned by Chris Beaver, Fraser Ridge took command from the gate and never looked back for partners Beaver, Robinson, Mondilo and RBH Ventures.   "He's got very high speed but isn't as handy as some in this age group," Merriman noted. "He was trotting so strong that he lost both front shoes tonight."   Bred by Steve Stewart of Kentucky, Fraser Ridge upped his career earnings to $75,050. Stormy Kromer (Peter Wrenn) at odds of 5-1 notched second-place honors 3¾ lengths behind the winner, while 35-1 Dejarover (Ryan Stahl) got up for third."   Beaver was back in the winner's circle after harnessing Buckeye Boss to win the second trotting division and lowering the track record further to 1:56.3. Bred by Marion Beachy, the son of Triumphant Caviar is owned in partnership by Beaver, Beachy and Synerco Ventures.   "He's a very nice horse and does it easily," Beaver admitted. "He's just fantastic and does everything we ask of him and is super versatile."   Buckeye Boss has now made a clean sweep of all four legs of the OSS series and has rewarded his partners to the tune of $104,750, with six wins in six lifetime starts. He finished a length in front of 12-1 Magic Vacation (Kayne Kauffman), with 7-1 Rose Run Spanky (Josh Sutton) getting up for third.   Beaver then bridled up Always A Good Time to win the third OSS division in 2:00. The Triumphant Caviar colt, who Beaver owns in partnership with Gallagher, Schwartz and Zeehandelar, led from start to finish en route to his second career victory in five tries, pushing his earnings to $60,000.   The towering, big-striding youngster was sent off as the 8-5 public's choice, finishing 2¼ lengths in front of 8-1 Cowboy Blue (Kurt Sugg) and 25-1 Bellhaven (Aaron Merriman).   Barnabas established a new pacing standard by capturing his OSS division in a front-stepping 1:53.1 with Ronnie Wrenn, Jr. in the sulky. Trainer Brian Brown gave the McArdle son a shoeing adjustment prior to this race and it made all the difference in the world to the brown gelding.   "He was game in his last race but was just awful gaited," Brown noted. "He wears a very heavy shoe behind but we had normal plates on him and we were finally able to get a set of the heavy shoes for this start. The half-round, half-swedge shoes that he needs are very hard to find because they're a much heavier version of a normal shoe. But we found three pairs of them and snapped them up. The heavier shoe really helps his gait since he's such a big animal. Plus, he's never been a good gaited horse."   Brown, who conditions Barnabas for the partnership of Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo and William Robinson, said the youngster was a real challenge from the beginning of his training regime.   "He was just awful in Florida over the winter," Brian related. "It was March before we were able to start training him and he was always running or was very racky-gaited. So we got tough on him and started jogging him four miles a day and then he just turned around right before we qualified him."   Barnabas upped his career earnings to $79,200 for his connections after finishing a neck in front of 9-5 Barley Up (Peter Wrenn) and a head in front of 60-1 Starry Nite Teen (Kayne Kauffman).   Longshot (12-1) Big Bad Bruce proved he wasn't so bad as he lowered the track record for 2-year-old pacing colts to 1:53.1 in the second OSS division. The son of Big Bad John was steered by Chris Page for breeder/owner/trainer David Wornstaff, pushing his lifetime earnings to $29,176.   "He's a nice colt," Page noted. "I won with him at the Croton Fair a few weeks ago and knew he could come a very nice last quarter, like he had a the fair (:27.3), so I knew he had a big move in him." Big Bad Bruce returned $26.40 to his backers after being parked from the backstretch to the wire, besting rivals 1-5 Scotch McEwan (Josh Sutton) and 14-1 McGold (Mike Wilder) impressively. Big Bad Bruce lowered his lifetime mark by six and 1/5 seconds from his previous record with this triumph. Ron's Pro and driver Chris Page put forth a game effort to best Drunk On Your Love (Dan Noble) in the final strides to win the second pacing division in 1:55.4. It was the third win of the season in five starts for the son of The Panderosa. "This colt is just big and dumb and is still very immature," trainer Ronnie Burke explained. "He's definitely a horse that will be better next season, although he's not too bad right now!" The big-striding Ron's Pro was parked out through most of the mile to the front-stepping leader, Drunk On Your Love, who was second by a neck at the wire, while Happy Harvey (Aaron Merriman) got up for third. Ron's Pro now has $60,000 in his career coffers for owners Burke, Bruscemi and breeders Knox Services. The fourth OSS pacing division saw McLucky prevail in 1:54.2 for owners Michael Creps and trainer Jeff Miller. The son of McArdle was sent off at 9-5 and didn't disappoint his supporters with a wire-to-wire effort, upping his seasonal earnings to $69,398. Corner Con Artist (Ronnie Wrenn, Jr.), at 7-1 was second, three-quarters of a length behind the winner, while 60-1 McDreamy (Aaron Merriman) notched third. Officially Creek (6-5) and driver Chris Page captured the fifth and final pacing division in 1:54, using the front end to get the job done for trainer Brian Brown. The Art Official gelding upped his earnings to $29,050 with his second career win in five tries.   "He's not a bad horse now but he'll be even better next season," Brown noted. "He's another youngster who will get better as he matures."   Owner Debbie Bird, of Gores Landing, ON, bred the Officially Creek along with Barry Bird. Longshot (50-1) Shooter McGavin (Kayne Kauffman) was second by 2½ lengths, with Drawing Dragons (Ronnie Wrenn, Jr.) getting up for show honors.   by Kimberly Rinker, OSDF Administrator

WASHINGTON, PA, Aug. 24, 2016 -- Donttellmeagain completed his sweep of four Pennsylvania Stallion Series preliminary legs when he rolled home in 1:52 -- a national season's mark -- in Wednesday's harness racing action at The Meadows. The $80,000 event for freshman colt and gelding pacers was contested over four divisions, with Dragon Striker, Western Hill and Ozone Blue Chip taking the other $20,000 splits. Aaron Merriman notched a stake double behind Donttellmeagain and Ozone Blue Chip. Jim King, Jr. said he and his wife, trainer Jo Ann Looney-King, knew early on they had a talented horse on their hands but couldn't reach immediate consensus on his stakes schedule with the youngster's owner, Paton Racing Stables. "I suggested putting him in the sires stakes, but the owner wanted to stick with the plan, which was the stallion series," King reported. "I got a horse with a lot of confidence right now -- we haven't taken him apart. I think he was well paid for his efforts. If everything goes fine with the final, that leaves us in a situation where the horse can make any payments that we want instead of expecting the owner to make them." On Wednesday, the Dragon Again-Donttellmewhattodo gelding moved to the front before the quarter and won as he pleased, downing Somebeach Baron by 3-1/2 lengths, with Mr Today third. Stallion series championships are set for Sept. 11-12 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.. Ponderingjacksfame also was seeking a stallion series sweep, but he was stung to the quarter in 27.2 by 60-1 long shot Aplin Hanover. That left him vulnerable to the improbable first-over charge of Dragon Striker -- improbable because the son of Dragon Again-Lady's Portrait was a five-race maiden entering the event. Nevertheless, he defeated Ponderingjacksfame and Marcus Miller by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:52.3. See You Friday earned show. "The horse sitting second was a long shot, and Marcus' horse definitely was much the best," said winning driver Tony Hall. "I didn't want to get stuck behind the horse in the two hole if he backed me through. So my game plan was to get around him and get back in the two hole. I was stuck out there a lot longer than I assumed I would be. But my horse overcame it and raced a huge mile." Rich Gillock trains Dragon Striker for owner/breeder Bob Key. Western Hill found himself outside and gapping cover in a 26.3 third panel, but he shifted to another gear and prevailed in 1:52.4 for Joe Bongiorno, trainer Tony Alagna and owner/breeder Tom Hill. Early leader Maconupwithedragon was second, 1-1/4 lengths back, while Papiamento completed the ticket. "I was chasing him a little bit, and he wasn't going on very much, but 26.3 was the reason," Bongiorno said. "When I popped the plugs, he gained so much ground so quick -- I think he came his third quarter in 26.1 -- and he was just gone. That's a serious horse." In the Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, Tall Cotton let his stablemate, I Know My Chip, do all the heavy lifting, then kicked past in the lane to score in 1:54.1. Trustworthy Kid shot the Lightning Lane for second, beaten a head, while I Know My Chip saved show. Dave Palone piloted the 10-year-old Revenue S-B Cor Peatra gelding, who extended his career bankroll to $787,541, for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Edwin Gold and Howard Taylor. It was one of four wins for Palone on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Saturday, when the program features the $140,000 Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers and the Tyler B, a $186,672 PA Sires Stake for 2-year-old colt and gelding pacers. The card begins at the special post time of 11:25 AM to dovetail with the running of the Travers at Saratoga later Saturday. Evan Pattak The Meadows Racetrack & Casino  

Harness Racing Inquiry: Trish McVeigh Panel: D Farquharson, K Wolsey, N Torpey Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC) Stewards today inquired into the circumstances surrounding the analysts’ findings in respect to a pre race urine sample taken from ANGUS BROMAC (NZ) prior to it competing in Race 5 at Albion Park on Friday, 20 May 2016. The Queensland Government Racing Science Centre (RSC) reported a level of Cobalt in the sample in excess of the threshold as prescribed by the Australian Harness Racing Rules. Today evidence was provided by trainer Ms Trish McVeigh, who explained the circumstances and possible explanation for the reading and her feeding and husbandry regime in the days prior to racing. After consideration, Ms McVeigh was charged pursuant to Rule 190(1) which reads:            “A horse shall be presented for a race free of prohibited substances” The particulars of the charge being that Ms McVeigh presented ANGUS BROMAC (NZ) to race at Albion Park on Friday, 20 May 2016, when a pre race urine sample taken from that horse was found, upon analysis, to contain a prohibited substance, namely Cobalt, above the prescribed threshold. Ms McVeigh pleaded guilty to the charge. When assessing the matter of penalty, Stewards took into account: The nature of the substance concerned and the level of Cobalt recorded (239Ug/L) No previous offences under this rule The circumstances of the case The need for a penalty to serve as a deterrent to illustrate that drug free racing is of paramount importance to the integrity of harness racing. Ms Trish McVeigh was disqualified for 18 months effective immediately. Stewards directed under Rule 195 that ANGUS BROMAC (NZ) be disqualified from its unplaced performance at Albion Park on 20 May 2016 and all other placegetters be amended accordingly. Ms McVeigh was advised of her rights to an internal review of this decision. Queensland Racing Integrity Commission 

Vernon, N.Y. -- Paul Kelley trainee Obrigado looks to defend his title in Friday (August 26) evening's $193,000 Crawford Farms Open Trot at Vernon Downs, but he'll once again have to contend with the likes of Resolve, Homicide Hunter, and Flanagan Memory after squaring off against them throughout the harness racing season.   Obrigado (7-2 morning line second choice, post 7) has won 4 of 11 races this year, including the Maxie Lee Memorial at Harrah's Philadelphia, the Charlie Hill Memorial at Scioto Downs, and the Cleveland Classic at Northfield. While doing his best work on small tracks this season, his most impressive performance may well have come over two turns in the Cashman Memorial at the Meadowlands earlier in the month, where he escaped traffic on the far turn and stormed home in :26.4 in pursuit of Resolve. Regular driver Mark MacDonald will once again pilot the 6-year-old Boy Band gelding for the partnership of the Paul Kelley Racing Stable, the SRF Stable, Linwood Higgins, and Stable 45.   Elitloppet runner-up and Cashman winner Resolve (5-2, post 6) looks to lead the charge to upend the defending champion in the night's tenth event, having also won the Arthur Cutler Memorial this season. Ãke Svanstedt trains and drives the 5-year-old Muscle Hill entire. Flanagan Memory (9-2, post 8) also enters from the Cashman, finishing a gathered-in third after seizing command through a bold middle move. The 6-year-old Kadabra entire earned all four of his seasonal wins in Preferred company at Mohawk. Brian Sears will take over the lines for trainer Rene Dion.   While Obrigado, Resolve, and Flanagan Memory have faced each other on multiple occasions this year, a new shooter is quickly gathering momentum. Homicide Hunter (6-1, post 2)--representing Crawford Farms Racing--enters off a decisive 1:50.1 victory in last week's Sebastian K Invitational at Pocono, brushing to the fore with a circuit to go and edging away to a four-length score. David Miller handles the driving duties of the 4-year-old Mr Cantab gelding for trainer Chris Oakes.   In the $170,000 Muscle Hill for distaff trotters (race 9), 21-time winner Hannelore Hanover (5-2, post 7) looks to maintain her dominance after winning 12 of her 13 assignments this year. The 4-year-old daughter of Swan For All proved a decisive and handy winner in her Miss Versatility preliminary at Tioga on August 14, completing the mile in 1:52.4 over off going yet with much in reserve. Yannick Gingras will remain aboard the Ron Burke trainee, who also captured the Miami Valley Distaff and the Armbro Flight, as well as the Fresh Yankee and Hambletonian Maturity over the 1-1/8-mile distance.   Among those aiming to hand Hannelore Hanover her second defeat of the year are Jewels in Hock (7-2, post 2, John Campbell), 2015 Empire Breeders Classic winner Barn Doll (9-2, post 4, Jeff Gregory), and double millionaire Shake It Cerry (6-1, post 5, David Miller).   A pair of New York Sire Stakes events for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings headline the undercard, with the undefeated Serious Major and Funknwaffles due to square off in the $55,500 eighth event.   Horsemen are reminded that entrants for the Crawford Farms and Muscle Hill events will race out of the detention barn, and they are due to arrive no later than 8:00 p.m. Thursday (August 25). Horsemen in need of hotel rooms for the weekend are advised to contact the race office at 315.829.6825.   by James Witherite, Vernon Downs

The favorites had their way in the New York Sire Stakes on Wednesday night at Saratoga Casino Hotel. Two year old trotting fillies took center stage on the Wednesday harness racing card as three divisions of the $53,500 stakes were featured. Barn Bella (Conway Hall) was the evening's fastest freshman filly as she scored a convincing eleven length victory in 1:58.1 for Jeff Gregory. The Steven Pratt-trained Barn Bella was her race's 1-9 betting favorite as she dominated her competition en route to her fourth win of the season and third in a row in NY Sire Stakes action. Sam Schillaci's Mamora Bay (Chapter Seven) had little difficulty scoring in her division of the NYSS on Wednesday as she trotted to a decisive 8+ length victory in 1:58.2 highlighted by a final half of 57.4. Schillaci trains and drives the filly who was the 1-9 betting favorite as she cruised to a first over victory, a win that was her fourth in six career starts as a freshman. The final division of the $53,500 Sire Stakes wasn't won by the favorite but rather the public's 2-1 second choice in the wagering as Amber Ella (Chapter Seven) came on late to record her second straight win in NYSS competition. Hall of Famer John Campbell piloted Amber Ella for trainer Linda Toscano as the freshman filly took advantage of a break by the race's big favorite and trotted past the rest in the stretch to stop the timer in 1:59.4. Live racing continues on Thursday night at Saratoga with a first post time set for 7:05pm. Mike Sardella

Machinthesand in line to Norris Rogers used a first over journey to overpower fraction setter Motorino, to take the Wednesday harness racing feature at Red Shores Summerside. The seven-year-old son of Mach Three positioned himself in the three-hole from post six before making his move just past the half and stopping the clock in 1:55.3. It was Machinthesand's six win of the season for the Noonan Holdings Ltd., Russell and Karen Noonan. Hughie Murphy handles the training duties. Motorino laid down fractions of :28,:58 and 1:26.3 and held tough to be second, Painted Desert picked up the show prize. Veteran free-legged pacer Blu Meadow Willie added his name to an elusive category when he crossed the finish line first in Race 6. The 12-year-old son of Drop Off picked up his 60th lifetime victory in his 282nd lifetime start for co-owners Bob and Brenda MacInnis. Walter Cheverie engineered the winning trip getting up by a neck to win in 2:01.4. Cheverie picked up the driving double scoring in Race 7 with the Alex Sobey trainee Sendmeasign. Corey MacPherson also scored a driving double, winning first with Minor Wisdom for Kristina McCourt and closing out the card with his own trainee Useful Hanover. Racing returns to Red Shores Summerside on Sunday with a 1 p.m.start. The card will feature the 2-year-old colts and fillies in the Joe O'Brien and Lady Slipper Stakes. For complete results go to www.redshores.ca. By Bo Ford

Enter the highly competitive world of Standardbred harness racing, in this exhilarating debut from an insider. The story, however, goes far beyond that and touches on universal themes that every reader will recognise.  You’ll be thrust into the front car on a roller coaster ride, through triumph and disaster, that begins on page one. You’ll feel every twist and turn of the story in the pit of your stomach. You’ll laugh and cry with the rough, tough guys who put on the show, rain or shine. You’ll empathise with the women who give this world a heart. You’ll meet the cheaters who use horses as pincushions, who want to win at any price. You’ll get to know the equine athletes who give their all, whatever challenges life throws at them. Last, but not least, you’ll feel the overwhelming sense of community that pervades this world, despite the sharp edges of a highly competitive sport. If that’s not enough, there’s a backstory that will keep you on the edge of your seat, which takes you on a journey from Ontario, Canada to the Rockies, the US, the Caribbean and even the UK. The icing on the cake is an ending full of surprises that will leave you feeling well satisfied. The characters leap off the page: a brilliant harness horse driver whose drug habit risks costing him everything, his cousin, a trainer who refuses to compromise her integrity, a mysterious individual known only as the Scorpion, lurking in the shadows, pulling the strings, the Director of Racing trying desperately to clean up the industry, his mentor and best friend who has his own agenda, a low life groom who knows too much for his own good, the Canadian Mountie who inadvertently gets involved, with unforeseen consequences, a veterinarian caught between two worlds, young horses unaware of what’s in store for them and trainers whose livelihoods hang by a thread, who face a Hobbesian choice if they are to survive. These are just some of the players in a story where passions run high and where the distinction between right and wrong, good and evil, is always blurred.  Fascinating, fast paced and with shocking twists and turns until the very last, HORSE FLESH is a breakthrough debut novel set to entertain not only horse and racing enthusiasts, but fiction fans looking for a fresh next read.  Standardbred racing originated in the US but the sport is also popular in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and throughout Europe. Tina’s debut novel, HORSE FLESH, was born out of her personal experiences and portrays a faithful and compelling insight into the world of harness racing. About the author: Tina Sugarman has been involved with Standardbred horse racing in Ontario for nearly two decades, spending summers on a horse farm a few kilometres from Mohawk Raceway, the premier harness racing track in Canada. She lives in Poole, Dorset with her husband and their maine coon cat, Juliette and enjoys driving their hackney mare, Mango, in the New Forest. Sugarman still takes a keen interest in the sport. HORSE FLESH by Tina Sugarman (published by Clink Street Publishing September 1st, 2016 RRP TBC) is available to order from online retailers including Amazon and to order from all good bookstores. For a review copy or interview request please contact: Josh Hamel, Marketing and Publicity at Authoright / josh@authoright.com

MEADVILLE PA - The second day of the 2016 fair meeting at the Crawford County Fairgrounds in this northwest Pennsylvania city, featuring harness racing three-year-olds in stakes competition, was held Tuesday - and appropriately started off with a ceremony, featuring the traditional driverless horse and gathering of the meet's horsemen, to honor Walter "Boots" Dunn, the legendary local horseman and friend to all who had passed away since 2015's Crawford County racing.   On the racetrack, it was Team Shaw, led by trainer Jason, who earned the spotlight by sweeping the Sire Stakes for sophomore pacers, on both the colt and filly side, and seeing its Unbeamlieveable, last season's winningest 2PF in North America, set a new Meadville track record with her victory in 2:00.4. However, in altering the record book, one only had to change the time from 2:01, the horse from Allstar Morning, and the date from 6-22-14 to 8-23-13, as the driver of the divisional recordbearer, driver Chris Shaw, remained the same. Unbeamlieveable, a daughter of Moon Beam owned by Jason's four-year-old son Mason, has seven fair victories in 2016 (she had 13 last season), and this track record goes alongside the local mark she set at Honesdale.   We focused on Jason in mentioning the Shaw sweep, which is unusual in that where you find Jason you usually find Chris, but the other 3PF winner was not driven by Chris, but by the veteran Roger Hammer: Gymnast Hanover, a daughter of Western Ideal co-owned by Mason and Amanda Shaw. Gymnast Hanover, although certainly no slouch with four fair wins this year, had often been in the shadow of stablemates Unbeamlieveable and Singalongwithbing - who finished second, with Chris driving, in this race, with another 5-time fair winner, Marvalous Jet, third in the 2:04.2 mile.   On the colt side, Star Of Terror continued his rampage, with his sixth victory in a row and eighth overall on the circuit, though the Hammer-guided Billy's Falcon, first-over to the victorious pacesetter, made him and driver Chris work for the one length victory in the day's fastest time of 2:00.2. The Western Terror gelding is owned by Fortunate One LLC. Rounding out the Shaw sophomore sweep in the pacing ranks was the Four Starzzz Shark gelding Prince Penrod, who led at every call for a 2:05.1 triumph for Jason, Chris and owner Mason.   On the trotting side, the fastest winner among the males were the Cantab Hall gelding OMG Hanover, a 2:03.3 winner for trainer/driver Todd Schadel, co-owner with wife Christine. OMG Hanover now has five fair wins, including his all-age track record mile Bedford; finishing 2-3 to him were the powerful Major Matter, who earlier equaled the all-age mark at Wattsburg, and Rail Kat, who saw his fair record of going undefeated in five starts at the Keystone twicearounds go by the boards.   Regal Woman won the faster of the two diamondgaited filly divisions in 2:05.1. The daughter of SJ's Caviar has visited Victory Lane on the circuit four times now for owner Dr. William Solomon, with Gary Johnston training and Aaron Johnston performing the sulky duty today.   There will be racing at three Pennsylvania ovals this coming week, with an overlapping date on Tuesday: the trotters and pacers will race at Indiana on Monday and Tuesday at noon, and at Wattsburg on Tuesday and Wednesday at 11 a.m. Then they will go straight to Stoneboro for the last "western-based" fair racing, on Thursday at 10 a.m. and on Labor Day Monday at 8:30 a.m., before "heading east" for the circuit's final three stops, at York, Gratz, and Bloomsburg.   Publicity Office, Pennsylvania Fair Harness Horsemen's Association

Harness Racing This Week: Crawford Farms Trot and Muscle Hill, Vernon Downs, Vernon, N.Y.; Yonkers Trot elimination, Hudson Filly Trot and Lady Maud, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Nadia Lobell, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; Casual Breeze and Metro and She’s A Great Lady eliminations, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario; and Artiscape and W.N. Reynolds Memorial divisions, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action begins this Friday (Aug. 26) as Vernon Downs will host a pair of older trotting stakes in the $193,000 Crawford Farms Trot for older males and the $170,000 Muscle Hill for older females. Also on Friday, Mohawk Racetrack will host two C$97,000 divisions in the Casual Breeze for 3-year-old filly trotters. On Saturday (Aug. 27), Yonkers Raceway will host a single $40,000 elimination in the Yonkers Trot for sophomore trotters, the second leg of the sport's trotting Triple Crown. Only eight horses entered the Messenger Stakes for sophomore pacers, the second leg of pacing's Triple Crown, so all eight will advance to next week's final. Additionally, Yonkers will host the $118,574 Hudson Filly Trot for 3-year-old filly trotters and the $109,050 Lady Maud for 3-year-old filly pacers. The Meadows will host a single Grand Circuit stake on Saturday with the $140,000 Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers. Also on Saturday, Grand Circuit action at Mohawk Racetrack will feature a pair of stakes eliminations. There will be a trio of C$40,000 eliminations in the Metro for 2-year-old colt pacers and two C$35,000 eliminations in the She's A Great Lady for 2-year-old filly pacers. No eliminations were required for the Canadian Pacing Derby, as 10 of the sport's finest older pacers were entered and will go directly to the C$616,000 final on Sept. 3. On Sunday (Aug. 28), Tioga Downs will card the $175,000 (est.) Artiscape for older pacing mares and W.N. Reynolds Memorial events for freshman trotters. Then on Monday (Aug. 29), Reynolds Memorial races for 2-year-old pacers will be on the program. Complete entries for the races at the U.S. tracks are available at this link. Entries for the Mohawk races are available at this link. Last time: The Grand Circuit spotlight was on The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono this past Saturday night as the track hosted a busy card of 3-year-old stakes. Betting Line paced the fastest mile ever by a 3-year-old on a five-eighths-mile track, romping to a four length win over Racing Hill in 1:47.2 in the $500,000 Battle of the Brandywine. Control The Moment finished third and Boston Red Rocks was fourth. It was Betting Line's ninth consecutive victory. His only loss this year, a second-place finish, came against older horses in his first race of the season. In the Battle of the Brandywine, Racing Hill led to the opening quarter in :26.1, with Control The Moment second and Betting Line third. Driver David Miller fired Betting Line to the front prior to the halfway point, reached in :53.4, and led comfortably to three-quarters in 1:20.1. Betting Line, the 1-2 favorite, was never threatened in the stretch and coasted to the wire. Betting Line has won 15 of 22 career races and earned $1.38 million. The son of Bettor's Delight-Heather's Western is owned by trainer Casie Coleman's West Wins Stable, Christine Calhoun, and Mac Nichol. Southwind Frank turned the tables on rival Marion Marauder, winning Saturday's $500,000 Colonial for 3-year-old trotters by a half-length in 1:52.4. Bar Hopping finished third and Sutton was fourth. It was a trifecta for the progeny of the stallion Muscle Hill. Marion Marauder got the better of Southwind Frank in the Aug. 6 Hambletonian at the Meadowlands, beating him by a nose, but this time the winner's circle trip went to Southwind Frank. In the Colonial, Sutton took the lead as the field left the gate, with Southwind Frank second as they reached the opening quarter in :27.1. Yannick Gingras moved Southwind Frank, the 6-5 favorite, to the front exiting the first turn and led the field to the half in :56.4. By then, the 8-5 Marion Marauder and driver Scott Zeron already were on the move first up, but were unable to get past Southwind Frank. The time to three-quarters was 1:24.3. Southwind Frank has won six of nine races this year and earned $910,023. For his career, the son of Muscle Hil-Flawless Lindy has won 17 of 21 starts and banked $1.69 million. The colt is owned by the Southwind Frank Partners. Darlinonthebeach took the lead after the opening quarter-mile and set all the fractions from there, winning Saturday's $350,000 Valley Forge for 3-year-old female pacers by 4-1/4 lengths over Call Me Queen Be in 1:49.3. Blue Moon Stride finished third, followed by Pure Country. Blue Moon Stride went to the front at the start, with Darlinonthebeach and driver David Miller settling in third as the field paced around the first turn and reached the quarter in :26.1. Darlinonthebeach, the 6-5 second choice behind Pure Country, was on the move coming off the turn and reached the lead on her way to the half in :54.4. From there, Darlinonthebeach reached three-quarters in 1:21.4 and came home a convincing winner for trainer Nancy Johansson and breeder/owner White Birch Farm. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2016, 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 Farm is the sponsor for the 2016 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the current leaders: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 604.5; 2. Tim Tetrick - 522.5; 3. David Miller - 508; 4. Brett Miller - 293.5; 5. Matt Kakaley - 281. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 731.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 528.5; 3. Linda Toscano - 203; 4. Erv Miller - 197; 5. Clyde Francis - 182.5. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 169.32; 2. Harry von Knoblauch - 149.5; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 140.37; 4. Bamond Racing - 117; 5. Tom Hill - 107. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Yonkers Raceway and Mohawk Racetrack. Yonkers will feature the finals of the Yonkers Trot and Messenger Stakes; Mohawk will offer the Canadian Pacing Derby, finals of the Metro Pace and She's A Great Lady, as well as Simcoe Stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters and 3-year-old filly pacers and Champlain Stakes races for 2-year-old colt and filly trotters. Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

Flanagan Memory heads to Friday's $193,000 Crawford Farms Open Trot at Vernon Downs looking for his first stakes win of the season, but the 6-year-old son of stallion Kadabra has already provided more harness racing magical moments than anyone associated with the trotter ever expected. The winner of 17 races and $1.05 million, Flanagan Memory was born two weeks prior to the death of his breeder, Michel Flanagan of Quebec. Flanagan's daughter, Liette, was not involved much in harness racing, but was determined to keep the horse regardless of any input she received. Among those offering advice were her father, who before his passing suggested Liette get rid of the colt because of his crooked legs. "He said I knew nothing about the horses and he didn't want me to get in trouble," Liette Flanagan said. "I told him no, I was going to keep him first and see what (then-trainer) Pierre Touchette said. I wanted to see what we could do and give him a chance. "Pierre said, 'I understand. You're going to do what you have to do. I won't argue with you.' I told him he didn't have to argue, I was going to do it anyways." Flanagan's decision paid off. Flanagan Memory's career victories include the 2015 John Cashman Memorial, 2013 Goodtimes Stakes, and 2013 Ontario Sire Stakes championship. He received the 2013 O'Brien Award for Canada's best 3-year-old male trotter. "I'm happy about it," Flanagan said. "My father, even though he passed away six years ago, he is somewhere living still in the horse. I never expected this. Even my father, if he was alive, he wouldn't believe it. It's really something. When you have that once-in-a-lifetime horse, it's wonderful." Flanagan was unable to attend Flanagan Memory's win in the Goodtimes, but was at Mohawk Racetrack when he won the Ontario championship. "The (Goodtimes), I was very happy," Flanagan said. "I was watching on the computer. I was alone that day watching and I was screaming, 'Come on, baby, come on.' The second one, that's when I realized it wasn't just luck. Everyone around me didn't know I owned the horse, but they found out very fast. I was going crazy." Flanagan Memory, out of the Flanagan-owned mare Classy Stacy, has won four of eight races this year and earned $157,580. All of his victories this season, including a 1:51.2 career-best in July, have come at Mohawk Racetrack in Preferreds. His stakes results include a second-place finish in the Arthur J. Cutler Memorial and third-place finishes in the Charlie Hill Memorial and Cashman. The stallion is trained by Rene Dion, a Touchette protégé who took over following the death of his mentor in 2011. Dion joined Liette Flanagan in ownership of Flanagan Memory prior to the horse's racing career. Flanagan Memory will start Friday's Crawford from post eight with Brian Sears listed to drive. Flanagan Memory is 9-2 on the morning line, the third choice behind Resolve at 5-2 and Obrigado at 7-2. "He's had a nice season," Flanagan said. "He deserves a nice big win now." Flanagan, who is the president of a Montreal-based business association founded by her father in 1972, owns four horses at the moment. In addition to Flanagan Memory and Classy Stacy, she owns Flanagan Memory's full sister Flanagan Lady. The 5-year-old Flanagan Lady was unraced, but is the dam of a Justice Hall-sired yearling named Flanagan Fantasy. She is in foal to Justice Hall again. She plans to continue racing Flanagan Memory for as long as the horse is happy and successful. "We don't force him," Flanagan said. "He's not a machine. We have to respect that too. I think we're doing well with that. We let him tell us when he's ready to go. We just have to watch him and listen to him." Friday's card at Vernon Downs also features the $170,000 Muscle Hill Stakes for older female trotters. Hannelore Hanover, who has won 12 of 13 races this year and earned $580,189 for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing, the partnership of Mark Weaver and Mike Bruscemi, and Frank Baldachino, is the 5-2 morning line favorite. Following are the fields for the Muscle Hill and Crawford. $170,000 Muscle Hill Mares Trot Race 9 - Post time 9:25 p.m. (EDT) PP - Horse - Sire - Driver - Trainer - Line 1. Harley Momma - SJ's Caviar - Ake Svanstedt - Ake Svanstedt - 8/1 2. Jewels In Hock - Credit Winner - John Campbell - Linda Toscano - 7/2 3. Rules Of The Road - Muscle Hill - Jim Morrill Jr. - Janice Connor - 5/1 4. Barn Doll - Conway Hall - Jeff Gregory - Jeff Gregory - 9/2 5. Shake It Cerry - Donato Hanover - David Miller - Jimmy Takter - 6/1 6. Kelsey's Keepsake - Yankee Glide - Scott Zeron - Ron Burke - 8/1 7. Hannelore Hanover - Swan For All - Yannick Gingras - Ron Burke - 5/2 8. I'm So Fancy - Donato Hanover - Mark MacDonald - Tony Alagna - 10/1 $193,000 Crawford Farms Open Trot Race 10 - Post time 9:45 p.m. (EDT) PP - Horse - Sire - Driver - Trainer - Line 1. Crescent Fashion - Muscle Hill - Jim Morrill Jr. - Ake Svanstedt - 10/1 2. Homicide Hunter - Mr Cantab - David Miller - Chris Oakes - 6/1 3. JL Cruze - Crazed - John Campbell - Eric Ell - 8/1 4. Canepa Hanover - Muscle Hill - Yannick Gingras - Jimmy Takter - 10/1 5. Centurion ATM - SJ's Caviar - Steve Smith - Ake Svanstedt - 8/1 6. Resolve - Muscle Hill - Ake Svanstedt - Ake Svanstedt - 5/2 7. Obrigado - Boy Band - Mark MacDonald - Paul Kelley - 7/2 8. Flanagan Memory - Kadabra - Brian Sears - Rene Dion - 9/2 9. Musical Rhythm - Cantab Hall - Scott Zeron - Benoit Baillargeon - 5/1 Ken Weingartner  

ANDERSON, Ind.-August 24, 2016 - Hoosier Park Racing & Casino highlighted the Wednesday, August 24 card with a pair of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals and it was Hoosier Park's leading harness racing driver, Trace Tetrick, who teamed up with trainer Erv Miller to sweep both divisions. It was the third round of five $75,000 preliminary finals offered throughout the stakes season for the freshman fillies. Hah ChaChaCha made amends for last week's second place finish in the eliminations to pull the 7-1 upset and score in a new lifetime best of 1:53.3 in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old pacing fillies. Tetrick made his game winning move down the backside and Hah ChaChaCha did the rest to finish two lengths in front of her next closest competitor. Leaving from the trailing post ten, Hah ChaChaCha settled along the rail in sixth while Amazing Arya and John DeLong were setting the early tempo. Amazing Arya dictated fractions of :26.4 and :55.2 but Jason Dillander had the heavy post time favorite, Firstup, out and firing. Firstup grabbed the lead just before the third station in 1:24.3 but her lead would be short-lived as Hah ChaChaCha made a sweeping move to the lead and never looked back. Always Giggling and Andy Shetler staged a determined rally late in the lane but would have to settle for second place honors while Pretty Image and Dale Hiteman were third. Hah ChaChaCha returned $16.80 to her backers at the betting windows. "She had to work hard tonight off of that trip," Tetrick noted after the victory. "We made a bridle change after her elimination last week and she responded gamely tonight. There was a head wind and the conditions weren't ideal but she raced great." With the win, the homebred daughter of Always A Virgin-Miss Atm notched her fifth victory from nine lifetime starts. Owned by Shim Racing LLC, Hah ChaChaCha has now bankrolled $73,313 for her connections. Coming off the victory in the pacing filly final, Miller and Tetrick were holding a hot hand in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old trotting fillies and Foxy Swan delivered as the 3-5 post time favorite. Foxy Swan solidified her divisional dominance in the two-year-old trotting filly ranks as she scored an easy two length victory and second $75,000 final win on the season. Driving confidently from the start, Tetrick pulled Foxy Swan just past the half and she maintained a clear advantage all the way to the wire. Stopping the timer in 1:58, Foxy Swan used a :29.2 final quarter to hold off a late charge from Doug Rideout and Ajessia. Donnas Dream and Robert Taylor rounded out the trifecta. As the heavy betting favorite, Foxy Swan returned $3.80 at the betting windows. "She raced great," Tetrick said. "She got to sit in for a good portion of the trip and was strong all the way to the wire. Erv (Miller) and his team have been doing a great job keeping them sharp all season." Owned by the Ervin Miller Stable and Anthony Lombardi, the daughter of Swan For All-Fox Valley Click has now won four of seven lifetime outings. With the win, Foxy Swan sent her seasonal earnings over the $100,000 mark as she has now amassed $107,286 lifetime. The Indiana Sires Stakes action will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, August 25 with the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Three $20,000 eliminations for the three-year-old colt and gelding trotters will also compliment the 14-race card for Thursday. Live racing at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:45 p.m. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. Emily Gaskin

Legendary harness racing horseman Vic Frost is heading to Tabcorp Park Menangle this weekend with a dual purpose. The highly decorated harness racing figure will present winning connections a trophy following the running of the race named in his honour, the Gr.3 $31,800 Lyn Kemp Conveyancing Vic Frost Cup for the open class performers. But before participating in official duties, Frost, 75, will send out his own runner in Back Page News in the Listed $26,000 AGL Energy Tabcorp Park Menangle Country Series Final. Following the invitation, Frost decided to look through the programs to make the trip worthwhile and found this series for his consistent intermediate grade pacer. Back Page News qualified after running a brave second behind Im Saint Anthony in the qualifying heat at Newcastle last weekend. “It’s a great privilege to be recognized by Harness Racing New South Wales and the Menangle Club and I’m really looking forward to the night. The race named in my honour looks a really good line-up while I’m happy to have a starter myself on the night.” Frost said. Back Page News will again be handled by Brad Cowen, a young reinsman well known to Frost and his partner Gail Geeson through his time spent in the sunshine state where they combined at times for success. The famous livery of white jacket with black stars will be on display when Back Page News and Cowen line-up in the fourth event. “I thought the horse went terrific at Newcastle last week and with some luck in running. I think he can feature again. I’m certain the big track will benefit him greatly, it’s a beautiful big track and very safe for both horse and driver. “While all my success was carried out at the inner-city track at Harold Park which was smaller and tighter, I think the bigger the track the better and Menangle has proven itself to be the number one track in the country. “Things are a lot different now compared to when I was back driving but I’m convinced it’s much safer and I think that’s paramount nowadays. I enjoy watching the races from Menangle through SKY channel but this trip away should be good fun.” Frost plans on leaving his Mooball base, near Tweed Heads, on Friday morning. And still roaming the property is former champion pacer Westburn Grant at the spritely age of 31. The Inter Dominion and dual Miracle Mile winner is thriving in his retirement. by Chris Barsby

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Nichols, N.Y. -- A trio of prestigious pacing events share top billing on Sunday (August 28) afternoon at Tioga Downs, with over $650,000 on the line in the Empire Breeders Classics for New York-sired harness racing 3-year-olds and the Artiscape for top distaffers.   In the $239,225 filly division of the Empire Breeders Classic, carded as the seventh of nine races on the afternoon program, elimination winners Penpal and No Clouds Bluechip square off against seven others. Penpal (post 5), a daughter of American Ideal, vaulted off the cover of Dime a Dance en route to a narrow 1:51.3 victory over sloppy going. Trainer Pat Lachance is once again listed to drive the 4-time winner, whose greatest success on the national stage came in her runner-up performance in the Mistletoe Shalee. No Clouds Bluechip (post 3) captured the other elimination in pillar-to-post fashion, earning her sixth career win in 1:53. Brett Miller was aboard for last week's odds-on win, and he is again nominated to drive the Roll With Joe filly for trainer John Berger.   Colts and geldings square off in a $240,475 final, programmed as race eight. American Passport (post 3) found new life in two recent Southern Tier appearances after failed bids in the Adios and the Cane Pace. The Tony Alagna-trained American Ideal colt repelled pressure en route to a 1:51 triumph in his elimination last week, and Scott Zeron is once again nominated to drive (also listed on Craftship). The 5-time winner faces the likes of Rooney winner Missile J (post 2, Tim Tetrick) and last week's other elimination winner Redneck Rally (post 5, Andy Miller), whose 39-1 upset over the likes of the heavily favored Roll Away Joe stunned.   A full field of 10 pacing mares are due to line up in the $200,000 Artiscape, the afternoon's finale. Despite the presence of millionaires Venus Delight (post 2, Jason Bartlett nominated) and Anndrovette (post 5, Tetrick), Ontario-based Lady Shadow has taken the distaff division by storm with wins in the Golden Girls and the Lady Liberty. The 5-year-old Shadow Play mare's 2:00.3 victory in the Golden Girls earned her the overall world record for pacers at the 1-1/8-mile distance. Yannick Gingras is nominated to drive the 22-time winner for trainer Ronald Adams.   While the three top-dollar events bring the Sunday card to a close, a trio of W. N. Reynolds Memorial Stakes divisions provide for a healthy undercard. An octet of 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings vie for $55,780 in the Judge Moore (race 1), while ten trotting fillies contest a pair of $29,190 Meda splits (races 3 and 5).   Post time for the Sunday card at Tioga Downs is 1:30 p.m., with full coverage on the Tioga Downs Racing Network due to begin at 1:05 p.m.   by James Witherite, Tioga Downs
Freehold, NJ --- Smalltownthrowdown is ready for a small-track harness racing showdown. The Dan Daley-trained 3-year-old is among nine horses entered in Saturday’s (Aug. 27) $40,000 Yonkers Trot elimination at Yonkers Raceway. The gelding has raced four times this season on half-mile tracks, such as Yonkers, and won three. He heads to the elimination off back-to-back victories on half-mile ovals in New York Sire Stakes action. Smalltownthrowdown will start the elimination from post two with Daley driving and is 9-2 on the morning line, the third choice behind Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder at 5-2 and Lagerfeld at 4-1. The top eight finishers advance to the $500,000 Yonkers Trot final Sept. 3 at Yonkers. The winner of the Yonkers Trot, which follows the Hambletonian as the second jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown, will receive an invitation to the $1 million Yonkers International Trot on Oct. 15. “His game is a half-mile track,” said Daley, who trains Smalltownthrowdown for wife Ann-Mari, James Crawford IV, Donald Brenner, and Richard Lombardo. “He seems to trot that (size) track as good as anywhere. A big track doesn’t really pick him up. “To step up against these horses, I don’t know. But he’s been super sharp, so we figured we’d take a shot.” Smalltownthrowdown, his name inspired by a country song, is a son of stallion Cash Hall out of the mare Ann’s Promise. He was purchased for $21,000 at the 2014 SUNY Morrisville Sale under the name Branchport. His half-sister Annies List was a multiple winner on the New York Sire Stakes circuit and earned $260,083 lifetime. “He was my favorite pick at Morrisville,” Daley said. “He’s a Cash Hall. Not many are high on them, but I’ve been lucky with them. He just had a great look. I knew his sister was a really good filly the year before.” Smalltownthrowdown was winless in his first eight races last year, although he hit the board six times including a second-place finish in the New York Sire Stakes championship at Yonkers. He then won back-to-back races, including the Simpson Memorial Stakes at Vernon Downs, to finish the season. This year, the gelding has won five of 12 races and pushed his career earnings to $278,760. He won in a career-best 1:54.4 on Aug. 9 at Saratoga in a division of the New York Sire Stakes and followed up with a 1:56.2 triumph in the NYSS at Monticello on Monday. “It took him a little while to learn to be controllable and do everything right, but he’s turned out to be a nice horse,” Daley said. “He was really sharp at Monticello, so we put him in here and hope we can get some money.” The field for the Yonkers Trot elimination, in post order, is Iron Mine Bucky, Smalltownthrowdown, Marion Marauder, Lagerfeld, Steed, Cufflink Hanover, Celebrity Express, Hititoutofthepark, and trailer Gleaming Memory. Marion Marauder, trained by Paula Wellwood, is bidding to add the second jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown to his list of accomplishments. The third jewel, the Kentucky Futurity, is Oct. 9 at Lexington’s Red Mile, but Marion Marauder is not eligible to the event. Supplemental entries, though, are permitted. There have been eight trotters to complete the Triple Crown sweep. The most recent was Glidemaster in 2006. Below are the post positions: PP-Horse-Sire-Driver-Trainer-Line 1. Iron Mine Bucky - Explosive Matter - George Dennis-Greg Haverstick-7/1 2. Smalltownthrowdown - Cash Hall - Dan Daley-Dan Daley-9/2  3. Marion Marauder - Muscle Hill - Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-5/2  4. Lagerfeld - Yankee Glide - Mark MacDonald-Jimmy Takter-4/1 5. Steed - Muscle Hill - Brian Sears-Richard Johnson-15/1 6. Cufflink Hanover - Andover Hall - Jason Bartlett-Chris Oakes-5/1 7. Celebrity Express - Andover Hall - John Campbell-Staffan Lind-20/1 8. Hititoutofthepark - Yankee Glide - Corey Callahan-John Butenschoen-12/1 9. Gleaming Memory - Muscle Massive - Ake Svanstedt-Thomas Milici-15/1 Saturday’s card at Yonkers also includes the $118,574 Hudson Trot for 3-year-old fillies, which finds Staffan Lind’s Celebrity Eventsy as the 3-2 morning line favorite, and the $109,050 Lady Maud for 3-year-old female pacers, where Newborn Sassy is the even-money choice. by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications
Goshen, NY -The second annual harness racing Goshen Yearling Sale, slated for September 18, 2016 at the Mark Ford Training Center, has been added to the popular Equineline Sales Catalog iPad App.   Goshen Yearling Sale president Bob Boni noted, "More and more technology has become part of the sales tools and our catalog is now available at Equineline to be downloaded to the iPad. This has clearly become increasingly popular with yearling buyers and it is yet another way we are hoping to accommodate our customers."   The powerful tool is free and available for any potential buyer at subscribed Standardbred auctions. The app loads sales catalogs to a user's iPad and enables tech-savvy prospective purchasers to write on and highlight catalog pages, assign ratings, make conformations notes, create lists and most importantly search and sort the catalog by sire, dam's sire, state of eligibility and much more.   The download is free and the app is free from the iTunes App Store.   In addition, a downloadable PDF version of the complete catalog is also available on the sales website: GoshenYearlingSale.com and of course, printed and bound catalogs can also be requested and mailed and are currently available at many of the tri-state racetracks and training centers.   The sale features over 160 yearlings, with 118 eligible in New York and 39 in Pennsylvania by hot sires like Chapter Seven and Roll With Joe. Links to videos of many of the yearlings have been added to the sale roster on the website, and more are being added on a daily basis.   The Goshen Yearling Sale is centrally located in Middletown, NY, which is within a 90-minute drive from all the major harness racing hot-spots in NY, NJ and PA.   Goshen Yearling Sale          
Du Quoin, IL - As the county fair and state fair season winds down in Illinois, major harness racing took place over the past two weeks at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield before moving this weekend to the Du Quoin State Fair. Mother Nature tried to put a damper on the racing in Springfield, forcing the cancellation of one card and another to be shifted, but stakes eliminations and finals were able to be contested when the skies were clear. After the completion of elimination races during a hot Friday afternoon on August 12, over five inches of rain fell in a matter of hours in Springfield, forcing the cancellation of the Saturday card on August 13. A couple of dark days included more rain, forcing the postponement of the card on Tuesday, August 16 as that card was moved to the following Thursday. Round the clock work by the Springfield track crew had the surface ready for the finals though on Wednesday, August 16 as the top Illinois-breds took to a fast track. The following were the winners of the Illinois State Fair Championship races: Two-year-old filly trot - Annas Lucky Star Two-year-old colt & gelding trot - Polar B Two-year-old filly pacers - Artemesia Two-year-old colt & gelding pacers - Fox Valley Inferno Three-year-old filly trot - Praise Singer Three-year-old colt & gelding trot - PJ Boy Three-year-old filly pace - Bucklegirl Bobette Three-year-old colt & gelding pace - BS Tyriffic This Saturday and Sunday the Du Quoin State Fair takes place as many of the two and three-year--olds that squared off in Springfield will meet once again. While live wagering is available on-site at the Du Quoin State Fair, races can be viewed online at www.duquoinstatefair.net under the "Entertainment" and "Harness Racing" tab. Post time each day is Noon. Jim Miller  
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