Day At The Track
Vistamista, harness racing

2YO filly pacers battle in DSBF at Dover Downs

Dover, DE - On a chilly moonlit night the girls went to post with the first harness racing division of the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund being won gate to wire in 1:56.2 by THE LADY SHERIFF (Southwind Lynx-Sheriff Sale). She is trained by Clyde Francis and handily driven by part owner Montrell Teague for his father, George and the Fry brothers of Houston. The place filly, ANNEKE (Southwind Lynx-Whirl The Girl) is trained and owned by Montrell’s Aunt Brenda and steered tonight by Jim Morand. The second division ended up with only 3 fillies going to the gate because of sick scratches. VISTAMISTA(Powerful Mist-Yankee Vista) repeated last week’s performance for driver Victor Kirby in 1:56. Trained by Wayne Givens and owned by Legacy Racing of DE,Inc. and Sharon White of Smyrna this was the tenth lifetime start and pushed her earnings over $65K. Winner from last week, RODDYS AT IT AGAIN (Roddy’s Bags Again-Terro Franco N) earned the place spot. The final will be contested on Thursday, November 29th in conjunction with the Dover Signature event, the “Hap Hansen Progress Pace” named for the late Brandywine Raceway President. Top eight point getters advance to the final. The pacing filly division will be the only division to field a consolation of $15,000 whicundFh will be contested on Wednesday, November 28th. by Judy Davis-Wilson, for the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund

Iheartquestionmark, harness racing

Iheartquestionmark keeps on winning at Plainridge

Plainville, MA --- If anyone doesn't want to see the current Plainridge Park meet come to a close its Janet Davis; owner and trainer of Iheartquestionmark who won the $12,000 Abigail Adams conditioned feature race for distaff pacers on Tuesday afternoon (Nov. 20). The win was the mare's second in a row and fourth in her last five starts as she has found some of her best foot of her year just as it is winding down. With a cold wind blowing a steady rain and the track rated as sloppy, Twist Of Fate (Nick Graffam) was calling the shots on the point in the feature and took the field to the half in :59.2 through the storm. Iheartquestionmark (Steve Nason) who had gotten away sixth, was now motoring up the outside second-over behind Angel Or Terror (Ron Cushing) who had pulled past the three-eighths. As the race progressed up the backside and the outer flow stalled in the mud, Nason tipped Iheartquestionmark three-high at the three-quarters and put a circle around the girls by the time they hit the top of the stretch. From there Iheartquestionmark paced home with authority under mild urging from Nason to win by a length and one-half in 1:57.3. It was the ninth win of the year for Iheartquestionmark ($3.40) who now has $60,750 on the card in 2018. THe 9-year-old daughter of General Aidid was driven by Nason for her last two victories. There was an eye-popping instant jackpot in the tenth race at Plainridge Park on Tuesday. The Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta combination of 3-4-1-5-2 returned $32,824.60 for a $1 wager. There will be no racing on Thursday this week at Plainridge Park in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Live racing will resume on Monday (Nov. 26) at 1 p.m. to kick off the final week of racing for the year. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Cracklin Rosie, harness racing

Cracklin Rosie rallies from worst to first at Meadows

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 20, 2018 -- Last by 8 lengths at the half, Cracklin Rosie followed a line of cover to the final turn, then roared wide through the lane to capture Tuesday's $20,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Cracklin Rosie was third in a cover flow that seemed excessive. But when Jim Pantaleano tipped her wide for the drive, she showed she's no "store-bought woman" -- as Neil Diamond's 1970 chart-topper Cracklin Rosie had it -- and erased the last 3-1/2 lengths of her deficit, scoring in 1:55.4 over a sloppy surface. Jewels Forreal shot the Lightning Lane for second, 1-1/2 lengths back, while the first-over McDazzle finished third. Scott Betts trains the 5-year-old daughter of Badlands Hanover-Honey's Bud Lite, who extended her career bankroll to $225,846, for Tim Betts, Stephen Moss, Nicholas Catalano and Pedro Baez III. It was one of three wins on the 13-race card for Pantaleano. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

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Meadowlands Annual Toy Drive kicks off Friday

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment is holding its 15th Annual Toys for Tots Collection Drive November 23rd through Saturday, December 8th. This year the Meadowlands has teamed up with NY Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa & the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots to donate all the collected toys to Harlem Grown. Harlem Grown is a charitable organization in Harlem whose mission is to inspire youth to lead healthy and ambitious lives through mentorship and hands-on education in urban farming, sustainability, and nutrition. For additional information, please visit www.HarlemGrown.org. Enunwa will be at the Meadowlands on Monday, December 3 from 6:30-8:30pm. FOX5 Sportscaster Tina Cervasio is scheduled to emcee the event. Anyone that brings in a new unwrapped toy will be able to meet and grab a selfie with Enunwa. "We are proud to host a Toys for Tots drive each holiday season," said Jason M. Settlemoir, GM/COO of Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment. "Harlem Grown is a terrific organization and we are grateful to be able to assist Quincy Enunwa in his Toys for Tots drive." Complete Meadowlands Racetrack Holiday Toy Drive information can be found at http://playmeadowlands.com/home.aspx by Rachel Ryan, for the Meadowlands

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, November 20, 2018-Yonkers Raceway's Sunday matinee this weekend (Nov. 25th) shall offer a first post of 11:10 AM. Races 1 through 7 go as those added-distance 'French' trots, with post times as such... 1st - 11:10 AM 2nd - 11:40 AM 3rd - 12:10 PM 4th - 12:40 PM 5th - 1:10 PM 6th - 1:40 PM 7th - 2:10 PM Post time for the finale is 3:10 PM, 3:30 PM or 3:50 PM, depending upon whether it's a 10-, 11- or 12-race card (drawn later Tuesday afternoon). Sunday's 'New York, New York Double' is comprised a one race from Yonkers and one race from Aqueduct (information updated when available). After this weekend, the next Sunday matinee is Dec. 2nd (post time TBA). by Frank Ducker, for Yonkers Raceway

East Rutherford, NJ - On Saturday night The Meadowlands will host the final Grand Circuit races of their 2018 season. The finals for both the TVG Championship and Freshman Fall Final Four will be raced on a card that will boast nearly $3 million in purses.   The $1 million TVG Series was launched in the hope that it would mirror the Breeders Cup Classic where the season's top 3-year-old performers would face older rivals in the season ending battle. The Open Trot Championship will see that concept come to fruition and in a year filled with great performances promises to be the race of the season for the trotting set.   Six Pack and Tactical Landing are the consensus top contenders for year end honors in the sophomore colt trot division and both have been declared for the TVG final, which could well also determine the outcome of that poll.   Six Pace drew an invitation via his world record Kentucky Futurity win for Ake Svanstedt who trains and drives the colt and owns him in partnership with Jeff Gural's Little E; LLC, Stall Kalmer and Lars Berg. He is the fastest 3-year-old trotter in harness racing history via his 1:49.1 Futurity victory and has earned over $1 million on the season.   Tactical Landing (Brian Sears) has lived up to his potential with a magical second half of the season in the Jimmy Takter barn highlighted by an imposing Breeders Crown win for the Tactical Landing Stable which resulted in his TVG invitation. He won his Kentucky Futurity split in his personal best time of 150.2 and has earned more that $600,000.   The TVG will serve as the "rubber match" between the pair as Tactical Landing prevailed in a Hambletonian elimination while Six Pack took the Futurity final over his rival.   Just last season What The Hill used a TVG Championship win to seal the deal for year end honors for the sophomore trotting colt division.   Their assignment is certainly not an easy one as the Championship also contains Yonkers International Trot winner Cruzado Dela Noche and TVG point leader Will Take Charge among a very accomplished field of nine.   Also, in the TVG Mare Pace Championship upset Breeders Crown winner Percy Blue Chip (Matt Kakaley) represent the sophomore ladies after trainer Ron Burke accepted the invitation for his interest as Burke Racing along with partners Weaver Bruscemi, Purnell & Libby and Don Emond. Percy Blue Chip has returned dividends of more than $400,000 since her September purchase for the group.   At the top of the standings for this division is Shartin N (Tim Tetrick) who has dominated the older mare division all season and could become the first older pacing mare to earn over $1 million in a single season in this race for trainer Jim King, Jr and owners Richard Poillucci and Jo Ann Looney-King.   The TVG Open Pacing Championship has SSG Stable's McWicked at the top of the heap points-wise for trainer Casie Coleman and after his scintillating 1:47.3 in the grips win for Sears last Saturday he'll take some beating in the final as he tries to wrap up the Horse of the Year title.   The TVG Open Mare Trot is led by Emoticon Hanover (Dan Dube) in points and performance off her second consecutive Breeders Crown win for trainer Luc Blais and owner Determination. 2017 Horse of the Year Hannelore Hanover makes her return for the Burke barn after a freshening and Ice Attraction is a player for Svanstedt as well.   The $1.8 million Freshman Fall Final Four will send ten to post in each of the four divisions in the final big money Grand Circuit event of the season for the 2-year-olds.   Complete information on the draw will be available later today on The Meadowlands website.   by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands  

Followers of standardbred racing in the MidAtlantic region have come to know Sofia Zingale as an upcoming star in RUS as a trainer and jockey. She has signified her arrival with the victory of Egosnattitudes over Hyway Marcus in the RUS MidAtlantic Trot at Rosecroft on November 4. A young trainer of dressage and show jumping horses, Zingale made a relatively smooth transition to the harness sport, exhibiting that with a first year USTR rating of .322. Prior to moving to Delaware, Zingale wasn't even aware harness racing existed. After fourteen years of involvement in non-racing equestrian activities, she came to Delaware to ride for the Delaware State Equestrian team as well as get her college degree in biomechanics/kinesiology. Soon after moving, Zingale met Leigh and Tyler Raymer who hired her. Once the Raymers left the sport, Sofia moved on to work for Joe Columbo and the George Dennis Stable. Saving money, Zingale purchased her first race horse Hybrid Heidi, she continues to campaign this mare. The purchase of Heidi encouraged Zingale to get her trainers license and go out on her own this past May. Since starting her standardbred training career, Zingale has acquired seven horses (in addition to still training four show horses). It was a problem horse, however, which had Zingale put her toes into the RUS pool and fittingly, this horse was Egosnattitudes. "I love problem horses. I enjoy the ones that make you think hard and try out of the box, new ideas", explained Zingale. "One day I was talking to Jonathan Roberts, he mentioned a trotter named "Egosnattitudes" who was definitely a problem horse. Jonathan thought RUS might be exactly what this horse needed mentally. He introduced me to Ego's owner, Adam Ainspan, and we decided to give Ego a try under saddle". The first day of training was tough but after, Egosnattitudes began to enjoy himself with the new racing discipline. After a few months, Zingale realized what a good horse he was. No doubt being involved in riding horses for so many years made it easy for her to pick up RUS. Training horses under saddle is not just for RUS in Zingale's barn. Of the seven horses in her racing stable, four are regularly trained under saddle. As Sofia says, "With my riding horse background, it's easy for me to pick out problem areas from on their back. I think training under saddle is great for pullers and horses that get sour to racing as well". You may think getting a horse to race under saddle is difficult, especially when they have been racing exclusively in sulky. Apparently, you would be mistaken. When asked about this Zingale responded, "Easy! Standardbreds take to riding so well. They are such an intelligent breed. This year, I broke six standardbreds to ride. Two of those horses, Puddin n Pie and Credit Blues, I only sat on once before we qualified them under saddle". She is amazed at how well they handle someone on their back for the first time. Ironically, the only horse which gave her a problem the first time under saddle was Egosnattitudes. Some may question if there is an advantage to racing horses both ways and in her response, Zingale's experience in biomechanics/kinesiology is obvious. "I think mentally it is great for the horses to race both under saddle and sulky. I also think it helps to tighten them up". Zingale continues, "Although RUS races tend to go slower, I think it's harder on the horses. Race bikes are designed to be light, aerodynamic and put a lifting pressure on the horse, whereas under saddle the horses have to carry 130+ pounds of direct weight on their back. RUS also causes horses to strengthen different muscles they wouldn't normally use in order to support the weight of their rider". Returning to Egosnattitudes, having had two wins on his card 'in sulky' this year, one may wonder why the decision was made to race him under saddle. Besides Jonathan Robert's recommendation, the decision to commit to RUS was made the moment the horse came into her stable with his large 'ego' and plenty of 'attitude,' as his name implied; a true problem horse which has been passed around from trainer to trainer for a few years. Having missed the Ocean Downs race due to an attempt to qualify bare foot after losing a shoe, the horse qualified a week too late and had a long time until the Meadowlands' leg of the series took place. Hence, the decision was made to qualify him back to the bike and return to the racing wars. Ego was racing so well in sulky that Zingale decided to leave him out of the Meadowland RUS race. Out of five sulky races, he picked up a fifth, forth, second, and a win for Zingale. Egosnattitudes may not have raced under saddle at all actually; that is until a driver didn't hear Zingale mention to avoid the outrider. Of course, Egosnattitudes was a little fired up in the post parade, so the driver took the horse over to the outrider, and you can guess what happened; he never made it to the gate and galloped the entire mile. Luckily for Zingale, the Rosecroft RUS race was scheduled for the following weekend and that was just what the doctor ordered. "The Rosecroft race could not have come at a better time". Sofia continued, "Ego needed a change as he was not going to mentally bounce back from his galloping extravaganza easily." A positive change with a resultant victory. Was Zingale surprised with the 2:00.0 mile and victory over Hyway Marcus, especially after qualifying in 2:07.3? Zingale says no. "Being honest, I wasn't the least bit surprised with his performance. He is an amazing horse. He has so much talent, speed, and stamina", she said, "I actually didn't even have a whip in my hand for the race. I knew if I could get him to stay flat he would have no problem beating Sasha [Moczulski] and Marcus. "A good rider/driver does their homework. Ego does best under saddle when he can sit to the outside of a horse," Zingale said. "it keeps him focused. Sasha and Marcus usually go a faster first half in comparison to their second half. I knew Ego would have more stamina then Marcus in the stretch. All I had to do was stay close. "The race work out exactly as I was hoping it would". Sofia explained that Ego did not like her monte saddle and therefore she used her riding saddle in the race as well. She joked stating, "He [Ego] wanted to show off by having the heaviest saddle and taking the parked trip with a nail-biting win at the wire." Zingale also had a reclamation project by the name of Atout De Fontaine in the Meadowlands and Rosecroft legs of the series; a French-bred horse who had a successful career in France's monté racing, having a lifetime mark in 1:56 (mile rate). He did start a few times in the bike in France but with under saddle being a popular style of racing, there was little need to make him do something he didn't want to. The horse came to the United States to race in the France-America Trot Series at Yonkers Raceway when he was randomly assigned to, trainer/driver, Pat Berry. This is when the nightmare started as "Frenchie" made it known he wanted nothing to do with racing in the bike; destroying race bikes, jog carts, and being a danger in the barn. Shortly afterwards, Frenchie found a new home with the Amish. Zingale was contacted by John Wagner who asked her if she would train the French trotter under saddle if he purchased him. Zingale admits that she knew nothing about Frenchie but having a soft spot for problem horses she could not turn him away. Soon after his arrival, research found the 1:56 mile rate and earnings in excess of 200,000€ under saddle, and Zingale became excited with the new project. "When Frenchie first arrived, he was very nervous. You could not move too fast around him". Sofia explained, "I let him detox for a few days before trying him out. His whole demeanor changed after the first day I rode him. He became happy and relaxed." Sofia hopes RUS can expand as she was saddened to see a horse earning 200,000€+ become so useless in a short period of time. While he may be tried again in sulky, the hope is to find the French-bred trotter an owner who will race him exclusively under saddle. Horses like Frechie really need RUS to grow and develop in America. As for the future of RUS, Sofia hopes wagering comes to the sport as it is needed to get purses to grow and attract more interest by other trainers and owners. Nothing motivates participation more than purse money. While Zingale is a big proponent of RUS, she realizes purse levels must be competitive with current overnight events. What about allowing pacers to participate in RUS? Zingale would like to see it come to fruition. She definitely will participate if it is allowed so horses of both gaits will have the opportunity to freshen up doing something new. Trotting or pacing, problem horse or not, Zingale is ready for next year and looks forward to expanding her reputation as a dual-discipline trainer as well as RUS rider. By Allan Schott, for RUS MidAtlantic            

For the second straight week there are no changes in the Top Ten Poll. Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown Standardbred Poll: Week 26 – 11/20/2018 Rank Name (First Place Votes) Age/Gait/Sex Record Earnings Points Pvs 1 McWicked (27) 7ph 18-11-3-2 $1,403,864 341 1 2 Shartin N (6) 5pm 23-18-1-0 $968,361 309 2 3 Atlanta 3tf 14-8-5-1 $1,017,278 249 3 4 Woodside Charm (2) 2tf 7-7-0-0 $521,658 222 4 5 Kissin In The Sand 3pf 15-10-5-0 $845,495 191 5 6 Gimpanzee 2tc 9-9-0-0 $591,358 141 6 7 Dorsoduro Hanover 3pg 20-10-5-1 $1,244,612 96 7 8 Six Pack 3tc 14-11-1-1 $1,075,648 80 8 9 Courtly Choice    3pc 16-10-1-0 $910,603 68 9 10 Tactical Landing 3tc 13-8-2-2 $642,800 59 10 Also: Homicide Hunter 53; Warrawee Ubeaut 39; Manchego 18; Jimmy Freight 14; Marion Marauder 12; Crystal Fashion 9; Lather Up 8; Captain Crunch 5; Emoticon Hanover, Met’s Hall 4; Plunge Blue Chip 2; Pure Country 1.    

Plainville, MA --- There is no hotter set of hands currently racing in New England than those of Mitchell Cushing and he continued to pile-on numbers to his career year by winning five more races at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (Nov. 19). The most notable victory in Cushing's day came in the marquee event; the $16,000 Winners-Over pace where Betterlatethnnever flashed his class once again. After leaving like a runner, Betterlatethnnever stacked up four horses three-deep at the three-quarters before shifting gears to pull away to a three-length win in 1:53.2. It was the ninth win in only 12 starts this year and the seventh win in the last eight starts for Betterlatethnnever ($4.20) who now sports $55,105 in earnings for 2018. David Glazer owns and Jimmy Nickerson trains. Then in the $14,000 conditioned event for pacers under 6-years-old, Cushing scored with Lear Hanover who followed Bowedfortyova (Drew Campbell) to the top of the stretch, where he pulled and out-muscled Ramblin Art (Nick Graffam) to the wire in 1:53.1. It was the eighth win of the season for Lear Hanover ($4.00) who is also owned and trained by Glazer and Nickerson. Cushing rounded out the five-bagger with Flash Lauxmont (1:53.3, $3.80), Lucky Sport (1:54, $4.80) and See Me Streakin (1:54.4, $5.00). Nickerson trains Lucky Sport as well and that gave him the conditioning Hat Trick Monday. Mitchell Cushing has posted gaudy numbers this year. Out of his 1,066 starts he's won 235 races, finished second another 160 and third 162 times. He's earned just under $1.4 million to date with a sparkling Universal Driver Rating (UDR) of .354. At the current Plainridge Park meet Cushing is in second place for wins with 131, has a UDR of .362 and earnings of $1.01 million. He sits behind Drew Campbell (155) in the victory category as Campbell has held that top spot for most of the year. Cushing plans to change his driving venue to the Meadowlands after the Plainridge Park meet ends next week which is the same track he started out the best year of his career back in January. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Tuesday afternoon (Nov. 20) at 1 p.m. With no winner again in the Wicked Hi-5 Pentafecta in the last race on Monday, there will be a $5,265 carry over pool for the Wicked Hi-5 bet in the final race on Tuesday. Post time for the 10th race will be approximately 4 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Dover, DE - On a very nice November night, the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund held the second lef of their series at Dover Downs. Montrell Teague drove first leg winner, KEEPMYWIGLEGAMETYT, (Mr. Wiggles-Airtight) gate to wire in 1:56 over runner up JET BAGS JIM in an early non-wagering event. In Race 1 on the betting card Montrell Teague repeated the first race and steered DASHIKI (Barber Pole-Enniskerry) to a neck win over last week’s winner, CHILLAXIN AWAY in 1:53.3 which equaled his lifetime record. Both winners are trained by Clyde Francis and owned by George Teague, Jr. Teague Racing Partnership LLC of Florida is co-owner on DASHIKI. The final will be contested on Thursday, November 29th in conjunction with the Dover Signature event, the “Hap Hansen Progress Pace” named for the late Brandywine Raceway President. Top eight point getters advance to the final. by Judy Davis-Wilson, for the DSBF

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 19, 2018 -- Wind Of The North survived a 27.3 opening quarter in the slop and collected his 14th win this year in Monday's $20,000 Preferred Handicap Trot at The Meadows. After Aaron Merriman gave Wind Of The North a 30.3 second-panel breather, the 8-year-old Cantab Hall-Talk To The Wind gelding had enough in the tank to hold off the rallying Classic Banker by a head in 1:56.1. The pocket-sitting PL Jerico finished third. Bill Bercury trains and owns Wind Of The North, who now boasts 49 victories and $1,026,058 in earnings for his career. Elsewhere on the card, It's A Dew Thing lit up the tote board when he scored at 96-1 for Chris Shaw, trainer Norm Parker and owner Tom Klosky, Jr. The 5-year-old Western Ideal-Artbitration gelding returned $228 for a $2 win-place-show ticket and set up a double-carryover of $5,888.89 for Tuesday's Pick 5 and a $1,629.04 for Tuesday's first superfecta, currently scheduled for race 2. Mike Micallef, Jim Pantaleano and Merriman each piloted a pair of winners on the 13-race program. Big-score wagering opportunities will abound Tuesday at The Meadows, as the card features four carryovers. They include: Pick 5 (races 9-13), two-day carryover of $5,888.89. Pick 4 (races 4-7), $3,905.52. The Meadows, in association with the United States Trotting Association Strategic Wagering Initiative, will guarantee this pool at $5,000 as it does for each Monday and Tuesday Pick 4. Superfecta (race 2), $1,639.04. Should a scratch or scratches leave the second race with fewer than eight wagering interests, the carryover will be applied to the first superfecta with at least eight wagering interests. Super Hi-5 (race 13), $670.20. First post Tuesday is 1:05 PM by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

As a trendy statement, "Fake News", seems to be thrown around frivolously typically with little to no meaning.  After this week's United States Trotting Association Executive Board meeting "Fake News" seemed to hit social media even before the meeting's adjournment. The Standardbred Transition Alliance, the STA, has been a hot topic for the last year. The idea was formed based on the clear success of the already existing Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance. The TAA accredits existing racehorse aftercare organizations based on important criteria such as; that they are pro-racing, maintain a current 501(c)3 federal status, and create fundraisers to aid accredited organizations. The TAA was founded in 2012 and have granted $10 million dollars to 7,000 Thoroughbreds to be retrained, rehomed or retired by their 64 accredited organizations (www.ThoroughbredAftercare.org). At the meetings of this week's Executive Committee meeting, the STA's proposal was brought to the Board of Directors requesting $75,000 to be diverted from the SOS program that has been in place to help rescue horses. When the rebuttle and directors questions began, it was clear that the Standardbred Transition Alliance did not yet have had not shared any details deemed important such as a business proposal, budget, mission, or vision in place to accompany their request. Through negotiation without the necessary details it was decided that the $75,000 fund allocation would have to be "tabled" until the STA can create a more extensive business plan and budget to accompany their request. An alternate suggestion, by Joe Faraldo was made in discussion on the motion to table, that upon delivery of more details perhaps it would be wise to deliver funds in tranches starting at $25,000, upon the STA reaching stated goals of actual contributions from industry participants themselves. Supplementing STA's growth further as the goal levels were achieved down the line. The motion carried however, because of the underlying failure of a concrete plan being presented. Soon after, the President of the USTA, Russell Williams, (Trotstorm @Russell_USTA) took to social media private messaging USTA members to "Tell You Directors to support the STA and retweet, please #supportSTA" and made a public Tweet as follows; "After an intense day, we have a good budget. All action items complete but one. The directors can't get together to support the Standardbred Transition Alliance. We are the last major breed in the US to have zero infrastructure for post career horses". This tweet then went viral, as it became quickly assumed that the USTA Board of Directors that voted against the $75,000 fund allocation were against the STA. The assumption on behalf of social media weren't portrayed by the USTA President that the majority of the Directors' action reflected their disinterest in helping seed this new entity was false and misleading. wasn't entirely honest in fact true. After looking into the matter more extensively, it became clear that clearly the majority of the board Executive Committee felt that without a proper business proposal in place, it would be irresponsible to allocate those funds at this time. Especially after the recent dues increase and a potential $700,000.00 projected deficit in the next 5 years. If you revisit the Twitter and Facebook posts you will see a plethora of negativity surrounding this. On occasion through Facebook comments, the USTA Directors are referred to as "heartless", "disgusting", and "clueless", in retrospect this isn't the case. Gabe Wand, a member of the USTA Executive Board of Directors stated, "the majority of our board would love nothing more than to see this effort become fruitful. At this time we need to see a more transparent plan in place. We need to make sure this group is pro-racing and their mission is congruent with the USTA's mission. I have faith this will be something great. The STA Board plans to have their first meeting late November, we will relook at this once we receive more information." After chatting with many other board members this statement rang true. As an avid supporter of aftercare, I find faith in Wand's statement and look forward to seeing the STA become a staple within the harness racing industry. I cannot help but think, that in wake of an epic $750,000 social media bust, can you blame the USTA Board of Directors Executive Committee for requesting a more extensive business plan/proposal before allocating $75,000? I cant. This letter was submitted by Ashley Tetrick, Delaware

Latham, NY --- The Harness Horse Breeders of New York State (HHBNYS) have announced that long time Standardbred owner Ken Jacobs will receive the 2018 Bruce Hamilton Memorial Medal. Jacobs is the kind of person anyone loves to have involved in harness racing because unlike many who view the sport with a dollars and cents mentality, Jacobs is not involved in this sport for investment only. He is also a fan who loves to carry the message of harness racing with him where ever he goes. A lifelong resident of Baldwinsville, New York, Jacobs has always had an interest in horses. And after buying an antiquated electric motor plant in 1981 and turning it into a North American industry-leading state of the art manufacturer of electric drive motors, he found some time to pursue his love of the sport. In 1993 Jacobs bought his first horse; a $2,500 claimer at Vernon Downs. From there it didn't take long for him to turn his attention to buying yearlings that were staked; in particular to the New York Sire Stake (NYSS) program. Through spending hours on research and doing his "due diligence" for every sale, Jacobs became very adept in his selections and as a result, has had a long run of picking successful yearlings who have become big time winners. Names like Rita J (Bettors Delight-Road Sign $193,012), Kenneth J (Bettors Delight-Advantest $1.56 million), He's Gorgeous (Art Major- So Ravishing $743,844), Heston Blue Chip (American Ideal-Shot Togo Bluechip $1.78 million) and Walner (Chapter Seven-Random Destiny $567,652) have not only made an impression on the racing scene in the state, they have helped keep New York-breds in the forefront of the sport on the Grand Circuit. Jacobs cares about his horses beyond what they do on the track as well. He is very particular in the way they are treated no matter how they perform. In a previous interview Jacobs stated "I'm not like some other owners who just want the money. I want what's right for the horse. And every horse I have gets the same thing regardless how they perform. They are all very special to me." Jacobs also cares about the community he lives in and supports many charitable causes and organizations. He does not want any credit for doing well for others; he feels it's his duty to give back where he can because he has been blessed himself. For decades, Ken Jacobs has brought the best he could to the track and has always supported the sport of harness racing. He has been involved hands-on through supporting breeding in the state, but he also goes the extra mile to promote harness racing whenever he can. Through talking to fans at the track, bringing non-racing acquaintances to the races or grabbing random people and children from the crowd to go out for win pictures, his friendly personality and affable demeanor make him a true ambassador to harness racing and one of the true "good guys" in the industry. Ken Jacobs will receive his award on Sunday (Dec. 2) during the NYSS Awards Banquet that will be held at 6 p.m. in the Grandstands Banquet Room at Batavia Downs. The Bruce Hamilton Memorial Medal is presented annually in recognition of outstanding contributions to harness horse racing and the improvement of breeding Standardbred horses in the State of New York. It is presented in honor of Bruce Hamilton who was the 18-year executive secretary of Harness Horse Breeders and guided the New York Sire Stakes program through some of its most exciting and challenging years. Hamilton was instrumental in uniting racetracks, horsemen and breeders in pursuit of video lottery terminals and the eventual passage of the gaming law in 2001. By Tim Bojarski, for the Harness Horse Breeders of New York State  

Ft. Washington, MD — Jonathan Roberts and Fashion Smile are as good a guarantee as there is at Rosecroft Raceway. The son of Broadway Hall picked up his 11th win of the year on Sunday (Nov. 18) and wins seemingly every harness racing start at Rosecroft. Sunday night, leaving from post eight, Roberts sent him to the front, clearing to the lead after a :27 first quarter. What was also worth noting, BWT Taj who left from post seven, broke stride right before the quarter pole and galloped uncontrollably around the track like a prompter which became an added distraction. Fashion Smile got home in 1:55.2 to take the $9,000 featured trot and paid $3.40 for owner William De Lodivico and trainer Megan Tolson. Don Dorado (Allan Davis) was second, and Master Clave (Roger Plante) was third. Rock N’ Roll Jet won his third straight $12,000 Open for Kim Vincent, blasting off cover in the final quarter to score in 1:51.1. Favored Al’s Hammered (Allan Davis) was second and pacesetter Hickory Aloha (Timmy Offutt) was third. Trainer Buddy Bright and Dawn Webb own the winner who picked up career win number 45 and pushed his lifetime earnings to $349,886. Roberts also picked up wins with Moveoutofmyway ($6.20) for Bob Weyforth and trainer Jeff Stafford, A Major Impulse ($14.20) for Joseph Karrat and trainer Luis Collazo, and Capital Builder ($3.20) for Bib Roberts and trainer Megan Roberts, giving her a double. Jacks After Hours ($3.80) took the claiming finale for Roberts as an owner and trainer Sofia Zingale. by Pete Medhurst, for Rosecroft Raceway  

The best of harness racing journalism in 2018 will be honored with the 57th edition of the John Hervey Awards for writing, the 35th edition of the Broadcasters Award and the 19th edition of the George Smallsreed Awards for photography. The deadline for entries is 5 p.m. Dec. 10. Entries will be accepted for news/commentary writing, feature writing, broadcasting, race photography and feature photography. Entries published or broadcast between Dec. 1, 2017 and Nov. 30, 2018, are eligible. All entries must be in English. Judges in each category will select a winner and, where appropriate, up to two honorable mentions. There are no entry fees or cash prizes. Winners will be announced in January and will be recognized at the U.S. Harness Writers Association's annual Dan Patch Awards festivities Feb. 24 in Orlando. Winners will receive a plaque/trophy as well as two dinner tickets to the Dan Patch Awards dinner. Photo and written submissions must have appeared in a paid-circulation publication or on the website that is the same-name affiliate of a paid-circulation publication, recognized broadcast news organization or established industry/news website. Content that appeared on personal websites, message boards or lists and similar entities is not valid for inclusion in the competition. The final decision on eligibility is in the hands of the Hervey Committee. Broadcast entries will be accepted feature or live racing segment no longer than 10 minutes. The entry must have aired on a network television or cable station, recognized news and/or industry website, or have been included in a racetrack's simulcasting presentation. Documentaries or other long-form productions are not eligible although one segment of that documentary, edited only to fit the length limitations of no more than 10 minutes, may be submitted for consideration. The awards are not open to entries that are fiction, in the form of Q&As, or were prepared for commercial purposes (for advertisements/promo/publicity purposes). There is a limit of one submission per person per category. A person may enter more than one category, but not with the same submission. An entry may only be submitted in one category and the category must be indicated clearly. The Hervey Committee, at its discretion, may disqualify an entry at any time in the process, and reserves the right not to bestow an award in a particular category based on the quality and quantity of entries. All entries must originate with the author/photographer/producer and must include a signed cover letter expressing the wish to enter materials in the contest and granting permission for the materials to be used for promoting the awards in press releases. The letter must also include the following contact information for the writer/producer/photographer: name, full address, telephone numbers (home, office, cell) and email address. The letter must also include the date that the media organization published/aired the submission and specify the category for which the entry is being submitted. Editors may submit entries provided the cover letter includes contact information for the writer/producer/photographer as well as for the person submitting the entry. All other third-party entries will be rejected. Written entries must specify the category - news or feature - for consideration. All print entries must include a tear sheet of the entry (a PDF is acceptable) as it appeared in print and a plain text version with no identifying information (bylines, publication name, graphs, photos or other graphic elements). Broadcast entries must not exceed 10 minutes and must not contain commercials. Each submission (one per person or organization) should have a cover letter. Submissions can be in the form of a mailed DVD or provided via a file-sharing service. Photography entries must include a cover letter designating the category for the photo - race or feature - and a tear sheet of the published photo, showing the date, name of publication and photographer's name. Tear sheets for Internet-based submissions will consist of a screen shot. Photographs should not be digitally enhanced beyond the basics needed to achieve realistic color balance and sharpness. Failure to follow these rules will result in disqualification. Photographs may be sent via email. If mailed, three prints of the entry must be provided. The decisions of the Hervey Committee and the judges are final. Email entries, or file shared for broadcast, are encouraged. Email entries should be sent to ken.weingartner@ustrotting.com. Mailed entries should be sent to Ken Weingartner, 425 S. Main St., Hightstown, NJ 08520. Questions can be directed to Ken Weingartner, chairman of the Hervey Committee, at the above email address. by Ken Weingartner,for the USTA

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Dover, DE - On a chilly moonlit night the girls went to post with the first harness racing division of the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund being won gate to wire in 1:56.2 by THE LADY SHERIFF (Southwind Lynx-Sheriff Sale). She is trained by Clyde Francis and handily driven by part owner Montrell Teague for his father, George and the Fry brothers of Houston. The place filly, ANNEKE (Southwind Lynx-Whirl The Girl) is trained and owned by Montrell’s Aunt Brenda and steered tonight by Jim Morand. The second division ended up with only 3 fillies going to the gate because of sick scratches. VISTAMISTA(Powerful Mist-Yankee Vista) repeated last week’s performance for driver Victor Kirby in 1:56. Trained by Wayne Givens and owned by Legacy Racing of DE,Inc. and Sharon White of Smyrna this was the tenth lifetime start and pushed her earnings over $65K. Winner from last week, RODDYS AT IT AGAIN (Roddy’s Bags Again-Terro Franco N) earned the place spot. The final will be contested on Thursday, November 29th in conjunction with the Dover Signature event, the “Hap Hansen Progress Pace” named for the late Brandywine Raceway President. Top eight point getters advance to the final. The pacing filly division will be the only division to field a consolation of $15,000 whicundFh will be contested on Wednesday, November 28th. by Judy Davis-Wilson, for the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund
Plainville, MA --- If anyone doesn't want to see the current Plainridge Park meet come to a close its Janet Davis; owner and trainer of Iheartquestionmark who won the $12,000 Abigail Adams conditioned feature race for distaff pacers on Tuesday afternoon (Nov. 20). The win was the mare's second in a row and fourth in her last five starts as she has found some of her best foot of her year just as it is winding down. With a cold wind blowing a steady rain and the track rated as sloppy, Twist Of Fate (Nick Graffam) was calling the shots on the point in the feature and took the field to the half in :59.2 through the storm. Iheartquestionmark (Steve Nason) who had gotten away sixth, was now motoring up the outside second-over behind Angel Or Terror (Ron Cushing) who had pulled past the three-eighths. As the race progressed up the backside and the outer flow stalled in the mud, Nason tipped Iheartquestionmark three-high at the three-quarters and put a circle around the girls by the time they hit the top of the stretch. From there Iheartquestionmark paced home with authority under mild urging from Nason to win by a length and one-half in 1:57.3. It was the ninth win of the year for Iheartquestionmark ($3.40) who now has $60,750 on the card in 2018. THe 9-year-old daughter of General Aidid was driven by Nason for her last two victories. There was an eye-popping instant jackpot in the tenth race at Plainridge Park on Tuesday. The Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta combination of 3-4-1-5-2 returned $32,824.60 for a $1 wager. There will be no racing on Thursday this week at Plainridge Park in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Live racing will resume on Monday (Nov. 26) at 1 p.m. to kick off the final week of racing for the year. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts
WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 20, 2018 -- Last by 8 lengths at the half, Cracklin Rosie followed a line of cover to the final turn, then roared wide through the lane to capture Tuesday's $20,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Cracklin Rosie was third in a cover flow that seemed excessive. But when Jim Pantaleano tipped her wide for the drive, she showed she's no "store-bought woman" -- as Neil Diamond's 1970 chart-topper Cracklin Rosie had it -- and erased the last 3-1/2 lengths of her deficit, scoring in 1:55.4 over a sloppy surface. Jewels Forreal shot the Lightning Lane for second, 1-1/2 lengths back, while the first-over McDazzle finished third. Scott Betts trains the 5-year-old daughter of Badlands Hanover-Honey's Bud Lite, who extended her career bankroll to $225,846, for Tim Betts, Stephen Moss, Nicholas Catalano and Pedro Baez III. It was one of three wins on the 13-race card for Pantaleano. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment is holding its 15th Annual Toys for Tots Collection Drive November 23rd through Saturday, December 8th. This year the Meadowlands has teamed up with NY Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa & the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots to donate all the collected toys to Harlem Grown. Harlem Grown is a charitable organization in Harlem whose mission is to inspire youth to lead healthy and ambitious lives through mentorship and hands-on education in urban farming, sustainability, and nutrition. For additional information, please visit www.HarlemGrown.org. Enunwa will be at the Meadowlands on Monday, December 3 from 6:30-8:30pm. FOX5 Sportscaster Tina Cervasio is scheduled to emcee the event. Anyone that brings in a new unwrapped toy will be able to meet and grab a selfie with Enunwa. "We are proud to host a Toys for Tots drive each holiday season," said Jason M. Settlemoir, GM/COO of Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment. "Harlem Grown is a terrific organization and we are grateful to be able to assist Quincy Enunwa in his Toys for Tots drive." Complete Meadowlands Racetrack Holiday Toy Drive information can be found at http://playmeadowlands.com/home.aspx by Rachel Ryan, for the Meadowlands
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