Day At The Track
Mackenzie A

Down Under mare wins $310,600 Final

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, April 22, 2017 - When the 92-year-old boss flies in from San Diego, you don't want to disappoint him. Good thing Mackenzie A (Jordan Stratton, $12.80) held up her end of the bargain Saturday night (Apr. 22nd), winning Yonkers Raceway's $310,600 harness racing final of the Blue Chip Matchmaker. Sitting chilly from post position No. 4, Mackenzie A watched as Lispatty (Brian Sears) leave hard from the pylons, with Shesjustadelight N (Ron Cushing) second and 9-10 choice Mach it a Par (Jason Bartlett) third...all three away in post position order. Meanwhile, Regil Elektra (Yannick Gingras) and Bedroomconfessions (Scott Zeron) tried to leave, only to get parked for their troubles (the latter badly compromised by the former). It was Lispatty leading at the :26.4 opening quarter-mile before Mach it a Par move to take the baton approaching the :55.1 intermission. Down the backside, Shesjustadelight N took out of third, with Mackenzie A third and Medusa (Matt Kakaley) staying in. Mach it a Par was seemingly in control in and out of a 1:23.4 three-quarters, with the uncovered rival pacing in place, forcing Mackenzie A wide. It was Mach it a Par owning a length-and-half lead into the lane, but company was coming. Mackenzie A blew on by, widening to win the ninth Matchmaker by 2¾ lengths in in life-best 1:53.1. Medusa, who had left the cones, failed to match strides with the winner but was a rallying second, with 81-1 rank outsider Diva's Image (Joe Bongiorno) a closing third. That one found her way into the final after original eight-holer Empress Deo came up ill. Mach it a Par faded to fourth, with Shesjustadelight N fifth and Lispatty, Regil Elektra and Bedroomconfessions bringing up the rear. For co-second choice Mackenzie A, a 5-year-old Down Under daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven co-owned by the nonagenarian Harry von Knoblauch (a fine TV interview) and his daughter, Ellen Kinser and trained by Peter Tritton, it was her second win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $167, the triple returned $6,251 the superfecta paid $19,960 (base $2 payout). "I thought I have to race her from off the pace," Stratton said. "The trip worked out perfect for us. I knew there were horses behind and I wanted to move." Stratton won the inaugural edition of the race in 2009 with Pancleefandarpels. A $75,000 series consolation was won by Hidden Land (Bartlett, $9.50) in 1:54.1. Saturday night's $55,000 Open Handicap Trot was won by Barn Doll (Jeff Gregory, $4.70) in 1:56.4. Frank Drucker

Keystone Velocity

$529,000 final of Levy Pacing Series

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, April 22, 2017 - Keystone Velocity (Dan Dube, $24.80) was hard-used early and hard-headed late Saturday night (Apr. 22nd), winning Yonkers Raceway's $529,000 final of the harness racing George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series. The sport's richest race of the season to date again honored the memory of the Hall of Fame founder of Roosevelt Raceway. At the outset of the 30th Levy, pole-sitting McWicked (Matt Kakaley) was-not surprisingly-put into play. He was joined by Keystone Velocity, who from post position No. 4, forged to the lead just after a spiffy :26.1, opening quarter-mile. Somewhere in L A (Jason Bartlett), leaving right outside of Keystone Velocity, was caught three-wide and forced to wrangle back to fourth. McWicked, who had retaken the lead in the second turn, found a :54.4 intermission before longshot Blood Brother (Brian Sears) moved from third. He uncoupled stablemate Somewhere in L A latched from second-over, with even-money choice Missile J (Tim Tetrick) and last season's champion, Bit of a Legend N (Jordan Stratton), at the back of that train. McWicked maintained his advantage through a 1:22.3 intermission three-quarters (:27.4 third station), taking a tenuous lead into the lane. However, his night was about to come to a unsatisfying conclusion. McWicked was done early off final turn, but not before taking Keystone Velocity to the promised land of the passing lane. It was Keystone Velocity fighting off the race's other tough mile, beating Somewhere in L A by a head in 1:51.2. Missile J settled for third, beaten a length, with a very-wide Bit of a Legend N fourth and 107-1 proposition Soto (Brett Miller) grabbing the final pay envelope. Blood Brother, Pcovocativeprincen (Yannick Gingras) and McWicked completed the order. For Keystone Velocity, a 9-year-old son of Western Hanover co-owned (as Allard Racing) by trainer Rene Allard, Kapildeo Singh, Earl Hill Jr and VIP Internet Stable, it was his third win (as the fifth choice) in seven seasonal starts. The exacta paid $135.50, the triple returned $593 and the superfecta paid $2,406. "Rene (Allard) and I talked before the race and we decided we had to leave the gate," Dube said. "I was just hoping Matt (Kakaley, with McWicked) could get me to the lane. My horse felt very strong, but I did see the other one (Somewhere in L A) coming." The driver/trainer combination was this race two seasons ago with Domethatagain, also with a two-hole trip. A $100,000 series consolation was won by Clear Vision (Miller, $8.40) in 1:51.3. Frank Drucker

Special T Rocks

Andy Miller sweeps features

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (April 22, 2017) - The Meadowlands winner's circle was painted orange on Saturday night as Andy Miller swept the co-featured upper level paces en route to a four-win night during the 11-race harness racing program. Miller scored in the $18,000 conditioned pace with the red-hot Special T Rocks by a head in 1:50.4 over the narrow 2-1 favorite Alberto Contador. That came two races after Miller prevailed in a three-way finish with Artful Way, who shipped down from Saratoga for the victory in the co-featured $18,000 event. In between those races, Iwillmakeyousaywow lived up to his name by surviving brutal fractions of :26.4, :53.4, and 1:21.4 to win the $17,500 Dash For The G-Notes Final from post 10. The biggest fireworks of the night came in Race 10 when Pat Lachance steered 13-year-old Semalu Express to a last-to-first win at 111-1 odds. He was followed by fellow 13-year-old Stormin Rustler, who was 95-1. The lucky $2 exacta returned $5,231.60 while the $2 trifecta with 6-5 favorite Camturo Beach came back $25,279.20. Corey Callahan and Jim Marohn, Jr. each had two driving wins while Eric Foster and Joe Hundertpfund, Jr. each had two training wins. Total handle was $2,326,485 for the 11-race card. Racing resumes next Friday. Post time is 7:15 p.m. For more information, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz

Titus Steelster

Jackie Green trainees win three

Titus Seelster (Artistic Fella) scored in his return to Saratoga Casino Hotel on Thursday night taking the evening's $12,500 harness racing feature. The Jackie Greene-trained six year old has been a factor in the local Open Pace from time to time over the past few seasons and after a lengthy stint at Yonkers returned to the Spa on Saturday to compete in the Winners Over Pace. Titus Seelster flashed his dynamic early speed and made an easy lead with reinsman Frank Coppola Jr in the sulky. After getting a second quarter breather, Titus Seelster didn't face a challenge until the final quarter of a mile and rebuffed all rivals before stopping the timer in 1:53.1 for his fourth win of the season. The race's longshot Montera sat the pocket to the winner and wound up second best at odds of 33-1 while the favored Bettor Rock On N (Stephane Bouchard) had to settle for third. Titus Seelster paid $5.10 to win as the second choice in the wagering and led an exacta and triple that returned $82.50 and $237.50, respectively. The win for Titus Seelster was one of three on the night for Coppola and trainer Jackie Greene as they teamed up for a victory with young pacer Shanghai Warrior (Big Jim) who prevailed for the fourth consecutive Saturday night and St Lads Moonwalk (Mach Three) who dropped out of Winners Over competition to secure his second win of the 2017 campaign. Live racing continues on Sunday afternoon at Saratoga with a matinee card set to begin at 12:15pm. Mike Sardella

LEBANON, OH. - McRaven, the hard luck harness racing colt that was sidelined after just two starts-both Ohio Sires Stakes victories-as a two-year-old, is back bigger and better than ever. The son of McArdle captured the championship of the 46th annual edition of the James K. Hackett Memorial for Buckeye bred sophomore pacers on Saturday (April 22) at Miami Valley Raceway, stopping the timer in 1:51.4 despite significant winds and chilly 48-degree temperatures. Following a third place finish in his initial 2017 outing, an elimination heat of the Hackett a week ago, trainer Brian Brown had McRaven primed for a big effort in his first major test of this season. Driver Ronnie Wrenn Jr. settled the winner third at the pylons well before the quarter-mile marker was reached and saved ground inside all the way to the head of the stretch before swinging three-wide for the stretch drive. Despite drifting a couple lanes in the lane, McRaven paced four lengths faster than any of his rivals in the final furlong to edge Barley Up (Peter Wrenn, Ronnie's uncle) by a half length in 1:51.4. Heracer (Josh Sutton) also finished strong to claim the show money. Pacesetter Major Nemesis (Tony Hall), who had established a local track record of 1:51.2 in his elimination, made an untimely break in midstretch after cutting fractions of :26.2, :55.1 and 1:23.2. The Findlay, Ohio partnership of Country Club Acres Inc. and L & H Management Services own McRaven. His next start is expected to be in the first leg of the 2017 Ohio Sires Stakes series on Tuesday, May 2. If all goes well, he has an invitation to the new $50,000 Scarlet and Gray Invitational for Ohio-sired 3-year-olds on Miami Valley's closing day program May 8. Kiss Of Terror (Kyle Ater) swept from far back early to triumph for the second straight week in the $20,000 Open Handicap on the same card. Due to his outside post, the 5-year-old Western Terror gelding was dispatched at 12-1 odds, but managed to beat Control Tower (Dan Noble) and Gerries Sport (Ronnie Wrenn Jr.) for his ninth seasonal victory. Kirk Nichols and Seth Downing own Kiss Of Terror, who is trained by Dan Ater. Gregg Keidel

WILKES-BARRE PA – Major Uptrend has now won four times in a row, and is a nose away from having won eight straight, after he made the 181-mile ship from Dover to The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono a profitable one Saturday night, taking the harness racing $25,000 winners-over pace in 1:50. Trainer Tim Crissman acquired this horse to condition in early February after a purchase and quickly found his key to success, which mostly has been to go to the front and improve on that position – during his almost-eight-race winning streak (he lost a nose to Limelight Beach at Dover on 3-16) he’s led at every call past the quarter except in that nose defeat. Driver Tony Morgan, who is now 6-for-6 teaming with Crissman behind the royally-bred winner (Somebeachsomewhere out of $1M winner Tricky Tooshie), rushed the favorite towards the lead after the quarter but was kept out by (ironically) Limelight Beach, who forced the Major to the half in 53.2. But from there, Major Uptrend was in command, winning by 1¼ lengths over Orillia Joe, who had set the Pocono seasonal standard of 1:49.4 from the pocket in this event last week, but had to come first-over here and settle for the deuce. The gelding, who went over $350,000 in career earnings with the victory, has shown a Major Uptrend in his form to the degree that Crissman Inc., in which Tim is part-owner, purchased the horse in combination with Niss Allen Inc. on March 26, and that ownership team 3-for-3 with the sharp pacer. Top trotting event of the night was a $16,500 conditioned contest, which saw the Crazed gelding Crazshana brought back to the races nicely by trainer Jeff Bamond Jr., having to go first-over and trot his last half in 56.3 in his 2017 debut, yet still having enough to defeat pacesetting ABC Muscles Boy by 1½ lengths in 1:55.1 for driver Eric Goodell. Crazshana also broke an earnings plateau with his win, eclipsing the $250,000 lifetime bankroll mark for Bamond Racing LLC.   PHHA / Pocono

FREDONIA PA - John P. Brocklehurst, 81, a second-generation horseman in a family whose reach in harness racing now extends to a fourth generation, passed away during the morning of Saturday, April 22.   A resident of Mercer PA, John, and his brother David, followed their father Paul into the business; John's son Harold continued the tradition, and the fourth-generation horsemen in the line today are Bryce and Mike, both racing at The Meadows.   John would likely have been proud of his grandson Bryce, who on Saturday decided to continue with a driving assignment at The Meadows only a few hours after finding out his grandfather, who had been ill, had passed away. Bryce went out and guided Media Buzz from eighth at the half to win the $28,400 Tamarind Trotting Series Final at the southwest Pennsylvania oval that afternoon.   The best horse with whom John was associated was Hominy Ros, who was by Rican Ros, a son of Florican, out of the Sharpshooter mare Chickahominy. John trained and drove the horse, and was co-owner with his brother David, who was the breeder. Among Hominy Ros's fifteen victories at age two in 1978 were two world records for two-year-old trotting geldings: a 2:05.3f at Scioto Downs, and a 2:04.1h at the Delaware Fair. John was also the leading driver at Wheeling Downs for two seasons.   John Brocklehurst's wife Mary Jane preceded him in death by six months; for 15 years they operated a harness repair shop on the backstretch at The Meadows. He leaves behind four children: Harold, Austin, Jane Anne, and Amanda; five grandchildren, including Bryce and Mike; and five great-grandchildren.   There will be visiting hours from 12 noon to 2:15 on Monday at the Robert Snyder Funeral Home in Fredonia PA. At 2:30 a memorial service will be conducted there by Pastor Joe Di Donato, chaplain at The Meadows.    

WASHINGTON, PA, April 22, 2017 -- Canwood used the Lightning Lane to power past her stablemate, Massive Risk, and capture Saturday's $27,200 championship of the Princess Pablano Trot at The Meadows and seal her sweep of the harness racing series. On the last day of the current meeting, The Meadows hosted the finals of four series for 3-year-olds with $107,000 in combined purses. Also collecting championships were Media Buzz, Southwind Yukon and Sapphire Breeze, the latter two giving Dave Palone and trainer Ron Burke a pair of titles. The Meadows will be dark for the next two weeks, using the break to undertake improvements to the racing surface and paddock. (The track and its Harmar facility will offer simulcast viewing and wagering throughout the hiatus.) Live racing resumes Saturday, May 6, when The Meadows will offer a card -- featuring Pennsylvania Sires Stakes and Pennsylvania Stallion Series races worth an estimated $195,000 -- to complement its simulcast of the Kentucky Derby. Special Derby Day post time is 11:25 AM. A recap of Saturday's championships: $27,000 Princess Pablano Trot -- 3-Year-Old Fillies Entering the series, Canwood was a pedestrian 1-8 for her career. But she sparkled when trainer Bill Zendt added Lasix before the first leg, ripping off three straight with a variety of styles. "It (Lasix) really was a big factor," said winning driver Brian Zendt. "She wasn't finishing her miles, and she acted a little sulky sometimes. Now she trots right through the wire. She loves racing off a helmet. She couldn't wait to by that horse." In the championship, she stalked Massive Risk from the pocket before blowing by late and defeating her by 3/4 lengths in 1:56.2, matching her career best. Miss Da Line, previously undefeated in the series, earned show. Brian Zendt said Canwood, a daughter of Cantab Hall-Hallywood owned by Judith Wolkomir and Fred Kayne, likely will take a few weeks off before beginning her PASS schedule, although he couldn't project whether she would compete in sires stakes or the stallion series. Canwood $28,400 Tamarind Trot -- 3-Year-Old Colts & Geldings Most trainers wince when their horses trail by 9 lengths at the half. Steve Bush had a different reaction when he saw Media Buzz in that situation. "That was our game plan all along," Bush said. "We didn't want to get caught up leaving with him. We wanted to duck him and come with him, and we weren't afraid of three-deeping him. I three-deeped him at the same spot when he was 2, and he circled them." The Explosive Matter-Lady Bar gelding justified that faith, rallying four wide through the final turn and scoring in 1:57.1 for Bryce Brocklehurst. Early leader Gee Wizz George was second, 1-3/4 lengths back, with Box Of Luck third. Bush, who owns Media Buzz with Alvira Fassett and Dennis Fassett, said the $12,000 yearling acquisition will be pointed to stakes engagements primarily in Pennsylvania. Media Buzz $27,200 Unlocked Pace -- 3-Year-Old Colts & Geldings In the series opening leg, Southwind Yukon led the field into deep stretch when he was outkicked by Beach House in the Lightning Lane. In the championship, the principals were aligned the same way, but this time, Southwind Yukon held off Beach House by 3/4 lengths to prevail in 1:52.2, a life mark. Dragon Striker earned show. Palone, who piloted Southwind Yukon some last year for owners Burke Racing Stable, Larry Karr, Richard Suda and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, said the difference this year in the son of Somebeachsomewhere-Southwind Solara is striking. "I liked this colt a lot last year," Palone said. "I think Ronnie (Burke) would agree with me that his attitude was a little suspect. Ronnie has done a terrific job of bringing him back this year. He's really been good about doing his work. The potential is there." Southwind Yukon $24,200 Medusa Pace -- 3-Year-Old Fillies Sapphire Breeze, the 7-5 favorite, appeared to be in trouble. Her stablemate, Emily R Hanover with Mike Wilder aboard, had zipped past her down the backside and opened a 3-length lead at the three-quarters. But Palone said that just meant it was time for the daughter of Well Said-Roller Cam to get down to business. "I thought I'd have my best chance following," he said. "In the last turn when Mike went to chasing his filly, I was pretty confident because I still had a handful. This is a fast filly." Sapphire Breeze poured it on, defeating Terrortina by 3-1/2 lengths in a career-best 1:53.4, while Emily R Hanover saved show. Burke Racing Stable, Phillip Collura, Michelle Yanek and Weaver Bruscemi campaign Sapphire Breeze. Sapphire Breeze The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

MANALAPAN, NJ — April 22, 2017 — The SBOANJ stakes nomination Form has been updated.  Please review the form below and use the current form to nominate 2016 foals to the new SBOANJ sponsored stake races for 2018 - 2019. http://sboanj.com/2017/Nomination%20Form%202017.pdf Courtney Stafford

East Rutherford, NJ - The big guns are beginning to show up at The Meadowlands for qualifiers and there were more than a few Grand Circuit stars of last year sprinkled throughout Saturday morning's harness racing card. Under overcast skies at 54f with a slight headwind facing them in the stretch, things got underway right on time at 10 a.m.   Hambletonian winter book favorite Walner got things off to a grand beginning by looking good in a training mile around 2:00 before the races with his driver Tim Tetrick in the bike. He certainly is an imposing presence.   Last year's top pacing colt Huntsville (Tetrick) made his return to racing and was a workman like 1:53.2  26.3 winner from just off the pace in race ten. Tetrick held him in third through comfortable fractions, followed up when Brett Miller moved The Wall from the pocket to engage, then put away the leader and required minimal encouragement to edge by that willing rival late. Ray Schnittker trains Huntsville and owns the colt in partnership with Gewertz, Iannozzo and Arnold.   Hannelore Hanover (Gingras) looked as good as a horse can look for the second time this spring, trotting away from JL Cruze and Broadway Donna in a 27.1 final stanza on the end of a 1:54 flat mile in race six for older trotters. As fantastic as her 2016 season was, Hannelore may be even better this year.   She was also Ron Burke's fifth consecutive winner of the morning.   Sophomore trotting fillies opened the day with Myammie Drama (Tim Tetrick/Ron Burke) holding Princess Aurora (Yannick Gingras) at bay through a 27.4 end to a mile in 1:58.2 in the second race.   Several GC winners met in the third and Sianna Hanover (Gingras) was an easy front end winner for Ron Burke's barn in 1:55.2/28-, her second impressive effort of the spring. Amber Ella (John Campbell) another nice looking Chapter Seven from Linda Toscano's barn was a comfortable second and Goldsmith Maid winner Magic Presto (Brian Sears) was a closing third after being reserved toward the rear for much of the race in her first appearance of the season.   Trotting colts came around in the fourth and last year's NJSS champ What The Hill (David Miller) scored a closing win in 1:55.3/28.3 in his second solid showing of the young season. Explosive Ridge (Marcus Johansson) went well, cutting the mile before giving way to the winner just near the wire.   Both Sianna Hanover and What The Hill are owned by Burke Racing with partners Our Horse Cents and J&T Silva. Deo Volente joins the group on What The Hill.   After a training break, three-year-old filly pacers came on to the track and last year's Breeders Crown and Kindergarten final winner Someomensomewhere made her first appearance for new connections. Adam Bowden's Diamond Creek Farms and Bob Boni have possession and placed her in Jimmy Takter's barn. On this day Someomensomewhere followed another Takter trainee, Somesleazetoplease (Brett Miller) around the racetrack to be second with something in reserve for Tim Tetrick in 1:54.4/27.1.   Last year's Dan Patch division winner Idyllic Beach (Gingras) and her Three Diamonds conqueror That's The Ticket (D. Miller) met in the eighth race. Both were reserved off the early pace and finished strong into a 27.4 final quarter with That's The Ticket getting a bit of a jump on her chief rival and prevailing in 1:54.4. Chris Ryder trains the winner.   Boogie Shuffle (Scott Zeron) was not a marquee name among pacing colts last season, but he was second in Downbytheseaside's world record equaling 1:49 at The Red Mile and was stakes placed on several other occasions. He has returned well for trainer Mark Harder, cutting the 1:51.4/26.4 mile this morning while drawing away from some pretty good colts.   Blood Line (Mark MacDonald) was a winner for the Takter stable closing stoutly into a 26.4 end to a 1:53.1mile to nip Western Joe (Gingras) and Summer Side (Schnittker).   The day's fastest mile came when a really good bunch of four-year-old pacing horses gathered for race eleven. Lyon's Snyder flashed his customary aggressive style and speed dragging Dave Miller to the front and setting lively fractions while being tracked by the undefeated scourge of the Maine state-bred program Seely Man (Brett Miller) and major stakes winner Western Fame (MacDonald). As they straightened up for home off the 1:22.2 three quarters, Boston Red Rocks (Tetrick) joined the fray from mid-pack and was charging the widest as Western Fame moved inside Lyons Snyder and that pair hit the wire together.   The four-year-old mares were the last to go with last season's bitter rivals Pure Country and Darlinonthebeach picking up just where they left off, right next to each other in posts five and six. On this occasion however, it was Blue Moon Stride, emerging form the considerable shadow of the aforementioned mares to cut the mile and hold that pair off in 1:51.4/26.4 for driver Andy McCarthy and trainer Mark Harder. Pure Country, Darlinonthebeach and Rock Me Baby followed her in.   With major Grand Circuit stakes such as the Cutler Memorial FFA trot and Graduate four-year-old pace now on the horizon the fun is just getting started.   Hannelore Hanover Sianna Hanover What The Hill Boogie Shuffle Huntsville Blood Line Boston Red Socks Blue Moon Stride Somesleazetoplease That's The Ticket     Nick Salvi

YONKERS, N.Y. - The final of the 2016 George Morton Levy Series was special for harness racing trainer Peter Tritton. He watched as Bit Of A Legend, the race’s 1/5 favorite, swept to the lead after the opening quarter of the rich Grand Circuit stakes before holding off all challengers in the stretch, powering to a length victory in 1:51.0. One year removed from that win, Tritton thinks his star is primed for a series repeat. “He is as good as he’s ever been,” he said. “We were hoping for a better draw this year, that’s all. But he’s as good as he was last year. He’s ready for a big race, I’d say.” While Bit Of A Legend enjoyed post position two one year ago, he and driver Jordan Stratton will start from post six in this year’s $529,000 Levy Final. “He had a good draw last year, I think he was the best horse in the race, but he had a good draw,” Tritton said. “To win it twice, and this time with a bad draw, it would make a statement that he’s the best horse because that’s not easy to do.” Bit Of A Legend enters Saturday’s race off his most impressive victory of the season. After earning second place checks in the first two legs of the series and winning in week three in off the pace fashion, Stratton sent Bit Of A Legend to the front in the final preliminary and led at every call. With a :26.3 final quarter, Bit Of A Legend stopped the clock in 1:51.3. Tritton thinks those aggressive tactics could be put to good use again this week. “Jordan said if something came along side of him, he was going to fight. He’s ready,” Tritton said. “He’s very, very strong. It’s up to Jordan, but he may try to use his strengths on Saturday night. We can’t drive him like that much because we want to maintain him, but for this sort of money, it might be what’s required.” An 8-year-old New Zealand-bred son of Bettor’s Delight, Bit Of A Legend sports earnings of $1,473,036. Racing at this level comes almost naturally to him, making Tritton’s job as trainer easier. “We don’t do much with him, we just keep him happy,” he explained. “He just canters and plays about, really. No pressure on him whatsoever. That’s why when he races, he comes into his own. He’s easy to train, really; just don’t be too hard on him.”  Although Bit Of A Legend faces a tougher assignment in this year’s Levy Final, Tritton is hopeful for a series repeat. To do so would follow in the hoofprints of Foiled Again, the only horse to win the Levy Final twice, in 2009 and 2010. “It would be great to. I love the little horse. He’s probably eventually going to go to stud, maybe at the end of the year, but it would be an accomplishment for him. He’s just a great little horse, especially on the half-mile,” Tritton admired. One of Tritton’s other standouts, Provocativeprincen, will start directly to Bit Of A Legend’s outside Saturday night. After earning 210 points throughout the series, Provocativeprincen was ranked eighth in the standings and made the final with two points to spare. “I’ve been very impressed with the horse. I didn’t think he’d be this good,” Tritton admitted. “He was only a middle of the road horse; we didn’t pay a lot of money for him, but he’s been very impressive.” Provocativeprincen won his first-week Levy division and finished second in week three. His fifth place effort last Saturday, however, left Tritton puzzled. Although he paced home in :27.0, Provocativeprincen lost ground late and finished fifth beaten 3 1/2 lengths. “Even though he came home in :27.0, I thought he was a little bit lackluster last week,” Tritton said. “I think he’ll be alright, it’s just I’d rather see him come off a better run last week. But he’s in it, and if he goes as good as he can, he will be running home.” In addition to his two-pronged Levy bid, Tritton will send out Mackenzie in the $310,600 Final of the Blue Chip Matchmaker Series. Although the 5-year-old Rock N Roll Heaven mare is a 20-1 morning line, her trainer is undaunted. “I think she has a great chance in the final. I wouldn’t swap her for any other mare in the race,” he said. Sixth in the Matchmaker standings after racing in all five legs, Mackenzie earned a spot in the final by winning her division in week two and finishing third and second in legs three and four, respectively. Last week, Mackenzie looked ready to charge off cover in the stretch when she suddenly rolled off stride. Her break came just as the whip of the driver in front of her waved past her nose. “She shied away from the whip of the horse in front of her and she galloped into the straight,” Tritton explained. “If she had won that race last week, she would have been one of the favorites. I think she’s got a great chance. She’ll be as good as she can be.” First post time at Yonkers is 7:10 p.m. Click here for entries for Saturday’s card. Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

Cream Ridge, NJ ~ The Standardbred Retirement Foundation (SRF) invites all equine enthusiasts to our Meet and Greet, and new and used tack sale on Sunday, April 23, 2017 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.   SRF is now entering its 28th year and is very excited to present a great selection of horses ready for their forever homes. From 11:00 am - 2:00 pm many will be shown under saddle, both Western and English disciplines, with our trainer and volunteers. More than 60 horses are available and staff will be on hand to answer questions regarding adoption, fostering, the organization, upcoming events, volunteer opportunities and information regarding horse sponsorship.   Accompanied by a Tack Sale, all are welcome to set up their own tables and sell their items. There is no fee for space up to 4' x 12'. If you would like to set up a table, please arrive at 10:00 am, so you can be set up by 11:00 am.   Visit our Facebook page the morning of the event to check for any weather related date changes.   If you have any questions, please feel free to email us at admin@srfmail.com or call our office at (732) 446-4422.   Visit our website www.AdoptaHorse.org for adoption applications and to get a glimpse of some of our adoptables.   With the beautiful spring weather we have had, our new horses ready to hit the trails, the ring, and compete in all disciplines.     Standardbred Retirement Foundation, 353 Sweetmans Lane, Suite 101, Millstone Twp., NJ 08535  

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (April 21, 2017) - Tuonoblu Rex, the American-sired, Italian-bred, and Dutch-trained son of Cantab Hall, entered Friday's $20,000 Preferred Trot at the Meadowlands with a healthy amount of hype following an eye-catching qualifying win in his first harness racing appearance on Big M soil two weeks ago. After grinding past millionaire Crazy Wow with a :27 second final quarter to win in 1:52.1 in his North American parimutuel debut, the bandwagon might need some more seats. "T-Rex" sat third as Crazy Wow showed the field through fractions of :27.4, :56.2 and 1:24.4 for three-quarters while Opulent Yankee chased from the pocket. Around the final turn, Andy Miller launched the 5-year-old, who earned nearly $200,000 during his 14-race European career, first-over after the 3-5 favorite Crazy Wow. The two trotters battled down the stretch, but "T-Rex" had enough late to win as the 2-1 second choice. "We were very pleased with him," said trainer Julie Miller. "He definitely met our expectations tonight. Andy said he was perfect to drive. He has trained down great since arriving in the U.S." Tuonoblu Rex is owned by Cees J. Faber's Stable Why Not. He is eligible to the Arthur J. Cutler Memorial at the Meadowlands on May 6 as well as the Cashman Memorial and TVG Free For All Series. Tuonoblu Rex In the $18,000 pacing mare feature, Breeders Crown champion Call Me Queen Be settled for second in her 4-year-old debut behind the sharp Inittowinafortune. The 3-5 favorite Penpal disappointed with a late-closing, but non-threatening third place finish. Hall of Famer John Campbell won three races for the second straight Friday night. Corey Callahan also won three. Total handle was $2,502,644 for the 11-race card. Racing resumes Saturday. Post time is 7:15 p.m. For more information, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz

YONKERS, NY, Friday, April 21, 2017- 'Twas the night before the harness racing finals of the George Morton Levy and Blue Chip Matchmaker and all through the house, not a creature was stirring... ...except for Jordan Stratton. The lad had himself a Yonkers Raceway Friday night (Apr. 21st), winning a personal-best six races during the 11-race card. "I can't explain it," Stratton said. "Everything I drove raced very well. It was just one of those nights." What made Stratton's run that much more impressive was there was nary a favorite in sight. He swept the $150 early double with a first-up That'll Be the Rei ($20.20) in the $23,000, first-race pace (1:53.2) and a down-the-road Mass Balance ($15) in the $27,000, second-race trot (1:57). After taking the third race off, Stratton struck again in the $27,000, fourth-race pace, this time with a closing Ambro Courage N ($43.40) in 1:54.3. Win No. 4 came behind a come-from-behind Lease Ness Monster ($32.60), roaring from the back of the bus in the $27,000, fifth-race pace (1:54.4). Stratton was then parked leaving from the eight-hole in the fifth race--backpedaling to last-then 'won the bob' in the night feature. Freeze Out ($15.60) rallied to take the $40,000, seventh-race Filly and Mare Preferred Handicap Pace by a scant schnoz in 1:54.2. Freeze Out Stratton's happy-half dozen concluded with Platoon Seelster ($21), who scooped up the $27,000, eighth-race trot (1:57.1) after 3-10 favorite Frost Free Hanover (George Brennan) jumped it off on the lead. Stratton ended his night finishing fourth, third and second, respectively. Additional props to driver Brent Holland for his hat trick Friday night. No one took down the Pick 5, so Saturday night's (Apr. 22nd) gimmick begins with a carryover of $3,206.32 (50-cent base wager, races 7 through 11). The Raceway's seven-figure Saturday includes the sport's two richest races of the season to date. $310,600 Blue Chip Matchmaker-8th race (approximate post 9:35 PM) PP-Horse Driver M/L 1-Lispatty Brian Sears 7-1 2-Shesjustadelight N Ron Cushing 4-1 3-Mach it a Par Jason Bartlett 2-1 4-Mackenzie A Jordan Stratton 20-1 5-Regil Elektra Yannick Gingras 5-2 6-Medusa Matt Kakaley 20-1 7-Bedroomconfessions Scott Zeron 6-1 8-Diva's Image Joe Bongiorno 20-1   $529,000 George Morton Levy Memorial-10th race (approx. post 10: 15 PM) PP-Horse Driver M/L 1-McWicked Matt Kakaley 3-1 2-Blood Brother Brian Sears 12-1 3-Missile J Tim Tetrick 4-1 4-Keystone Velocity Dan Dube 9-1 5-Somewhere in L A Jason Bartlett 2-1 6-Bit of a Legend N Jordan Stratton 5-1 7-Provocativeprincen Yannick Gingras 20-1 8-Soto Brett Miller 12-1 Frank Drucker

LEBANON, OH. – Rosemary Rose kept her harness racing undefeated streak alive Friday night (April 21) at Miami Valley Raceway capturing the 46th edition of the James K. Hackett Memorial for 3-year-old Ohio-sired fillies in 1:53.1.  Driver Mike Wilder took no prisoners with the odds-on favorite in the $40,000 championship race, springing from the gate and heading the classy final field through fractions of :27, :56 and 1:24.3, widening her lead around the final turn, and then holding fast-closing runnerup Full Body Shot (Mike Micallef) at bay by 1-3/4 lengths at the finish.  Won For Gigi (Peter Wrenn) got the show dough by finishing three lengths behind the winner. Ron Burke trains the sophomore daughter of Foreclosure N for Burke Racing Stable LLC, Jason Melillo and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.  Rosemary Rose is now five-for-five in 2017 after a freshman season when she was two-for-two.  Her half of the $40,000 purse bumped her earnings to $83,050.  With the Hackett championship, Rosemary Rose was automatically issued the first invitation to compete in one of the four new $50,000 Scarlet and Grey Invitationals on Miami Valley’s closing program on Monday, May 8.  She will likely see her next action, however, on Monday, May 1 as a prohibitive favorite in a $40,000 division of the first leg of the 2017 Ohio Sires Stakes program. Rosemary Rose While the Hackett Filly Championship was won by the public choice, a huge longshot found the winner’s circle following the $22,000 Mares Open Pace on Friday.  A Little Starstruk, with North America’s dash leader Aaron Merriman in the sulky, upset a full field of the best mares in the Midwest at 29-1 odds.  The 6-year-old daughter of Well Said was plucked from a $15,000 claimer just over a month ago by owner-trainer Chris McGuire.  After winning a $20,000 claimer two weeks ago, she was entered in open company but drew an outside post last week and finished sixth, although she paced her mile in 1:52.4.  This week she drew inside, raced in sixth along the pylons as her adversaries did fierce combat through fractions of :27, :54.3 and 1:23, and then slid up the inside before finding a seam and angling out to edge fellow longshot Art I Sweet (Ken Holliday) in deep stretch.  Safe From Terror (Dan Noble) closed fastest of all to garner show laurels. A Little Starstruk now boasts 22 lifetime wins and $218,537 in earnings. A Little Starstruk Racing resumes Saturday night (April 22) at Miami Valley when the features will be the $40,000 Hackett Memorial championship for pacing colts and a $20,000 Open Pace. Gregg Keidel

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YONKERS, NY, Saturday, April 22, 2017 - When the 92-year-old boss flies in from San Diego, you don't want to disappoint him. Good thing Mackenzie A (Jordan Stratton, $12.80) held up her end of the bargain Saturday night (Apr. 22nd), winning Yonkers Raceway's $310,600 harness racing final of the Blue Chip Matchmaker. Sitting chilly from post position No. 4, Mackenzie A watched as Lispatty (Brian Sears) leave hard from the pylons, with Shesjustadelight N (Ron Cushing) second and 9-10 choice Mach it a Par (Jason Bartlett) third...all three away in post position order. Meanwhile, Regil Elektra (Yannick Gingras) and Bedroomconfessions (Scott Zeron) tried to leave, only to get parked for their troubles (the latter badly compromised by the former). It was Lispatty leading at the :26.4 opening quarter-mile before Mach it a Par move to take the baton approaching the :55.1 intermission. Down the backside, Shesjustadelight N took out of third, with Mackenzie A third and Medusa (Matt Kakaley) staying in. Mach it a Par was seemingly in control in and out of a 1:23.4 three-quarters, with the uncovered rival pacing in place, forcing Mackenzie A wide. It was Mach it a Par owning a length-and-half lead into the lane, but company was coming. Mackenzie A blew on by, widening to win the ninth Matchmaker by 2¾ lengths in in life-best 1:53.1. Medusa, who had left the cones, failed to match strides with the winner but was a rallying second, with 81-1 rank outsider Diva's Image (Joe Bongiorno) a closing third. That one found her way into the final after original eight-holer Empress Deo came up ill. Mach it a Par faded to fourth, with Shesjustadelight N fifth and Lispatty, Regil Elektra and Bedroomconfessions bringing up the rear. For co-second choice Mackenzie A, a 5-year-old Down Under daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven co-owned by the nonagenarian Harry von Knoblauch (a fine TV interview) and his daughter, Ellen Kinser and trained by Peter Tritton, it was her second win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $167, the triple returned $6,251 the superfecta paid $19,960 (base $2 payout). "I thought I have to race her from off the pace," Stratton said. "The trip worked out perfect for us. I knew there were horses behind and I wanted to move." Stratton won the inaugural edition of the race in 2009 with Pancleefandarpels. A $75,000 series consolation was won by Hidden Land (Bartlett, $9.50) in 1:54.1. Saturday night's $55,000 Open Handicap Trot was won by Barn Doll (Jeff Gregory, $4.70) in 1:56.4. Frank Drucker
YONKERS, NY, Saturday, April 22, 2017 - Keystone Velocity (Dan Dube, $24.80) was hard-used early and hard-headed late Saturday night (Apr. 22nd), winning Yonkers Raceway's $529,000 final of the harness racing George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series. The sport's richest race of the season to date again honored the memory of the Hall of Fame founder of Roosevelt Raceway. At the outset of the 30th Levy, pole-sitting McWicked (Matt Kakaley) was-not surprisingly-put into play. He was joined by Keystone Velocity, who from post position No. 4, forged to the lead just after a spiffy :26.1, opening quarter-mile. Somewhere in L A (Jason Bartlett), leaving right outside of Keystone Velocity, was caught three-wide and forced to wrangle back to fourth. McWicked, who had retaken the lead in the second turn, found a :54.4 intermission before longshot Blood Brother (Brian Sears) moved from third. He uncoupled stablemate Somewhere in L A latched from second-over, with even-money choice Missile J (Tim Tetrick) and last season's champion, Bit of a Legend N (Jordan Stratton), at the back of that train. McWicked maintained his advantage through a 1:22.3 intermission three-quarters (:27.4 third station), taking a tenuous lead into the lane. However, his night was about to come to a unsatisfying conclusion. McWicked was done early off final turn, but not before taking Keystone Velocity to the promised land of the passing lane. It was Keystone Velocity fighting off the race's other tough mile, beating Somewhere in L A by a head in 1:51.2. Missile J settled for third, beaten a length, with a very-wide Bit of a Legend N fourth and 107-1 proposition Soto (Brett Miller) grabbing the final pay envelope. Blood Brother, Pcovocativeprincen (Yannick Gingras) and McWicked completed the order. For Keystone Velocity, a 9-year-old son of Western Hanover co-owned (as Allard Racing) by trainer Rene Allard, Kapildeo Singh, Earl Hill Jr and VIP Internet Stable, it was his third win (as the fifth choice) in seven seasonal starts. The exacta paid $135.50, the triple returned $593 and the superfecta paid $2,406. "Rene (Allard) and I talked before the race and we decided we had to leave the gate," Dube said. "I was just hoping Matt (Kakaley, with McWicked) could get me to the lane. My horse felt very strong, but I did see the other one (Somewhere in L A) coming." The driver/trainer combination was this race two seasons ago with Domethatagain, also with a two-hole trip. A $100,000 series consolation was won by Clear Vision (Miller, $8.40) in 1:51.3. Frank Drucker
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (April 22, 2017) - The Meadowlands winner's circle was painted orange on Saturday night as Andy Miller swept the co-featured upper level paces en route to a four-win night during the 11-race harness racing program. Miller scored in the $18,000 conditioned pace with the red-hot Special T Rocks by a head in 1:50.4 over the narrow 2-1 favorite Alberto Contador. That came two races after Miller prevailed in a three-way finish with Artful Way, who shipped down from Saratoga for the victory in the co-featured $18,000 event. In between those races, Iwillmakeyousaywow lived up to his name by surviving brutal fractions of :26.4, :53.4, and 1:21.4 to win the $17,500 Dash For The G-Notes Final from post 10. The biggest fireworks of the night came in Race 10 when Pat Lachance steered 13-year-old Semalu Express to a last-to-first win at 111-1 odds. He was followed by fellow 13-year-old Stormin Rustler, who was 95-1. The lucky $2 exacta returned $5,231.60 while the $2 trifecta with 6-5 favorite Camturo Beach came back $25,279.20. Corey Callahan and Jim Marohn, Jr. each had two driving wins while Eric Foster and Joe Hundertpfund, Jr. each had two training wins. Total handle was $2,326,485 for the 11-race card. Racing resumes next Friday. Post time is 7:15 p.m. For more information, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz
Titus Seelster (Artistic Fella) scored in his return to Saratoga Casino Hotel on Thursday night taking the evening's $12,500 harness racing feature. The Jackie Greene-trained six year old has been a factor in the local Open Pace from time to time over the past few seasons and after a lengthy stint at Yonkers returned to the Spa on Saturday to compete in the Winners Over Pace. Titus Seelster flashed his dynamic early speed and made an easy lead with reinsman Frank Coppola Jr in the sulky. After getting a second quarter breather, Titus Seelster didn't face a challenge until the final quarter of a mile and rebuffed all rivals before stopping the timer in 1:53.1 for his fourth win of the season. The race's longshot Montera sat the pocket to the winner and wound up second best at odds of 33-1 while the favored Bettor Rock On N (Stephane Bouchard) had to settle for third. Titus Seelster paid $5.10 to win as the second choice in the wagering and led an exacta and triple that returned $82.50 and $237.50, respectively. The win for Titus Seelster was one of three on the night for Coppola and trainer Jackie Greene as they teamed up for a victory with young pacer Shanghai Warrior (Big Jim) who prevailed for the fourth consecutive Saturday night and St Lads Moonwalk (Mach Three) who dropped out of Winners Over competition to secure his second win of the 2017 campaign. Live racing continues on Sunday afternoon at Saratoga with a matinee card set to begin at 12:15pm. Mike Sardella
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