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Pacing colt Make My Deo was the top-selling yearling at Tuesday's (Nov. 5) second session of the Standardbred Horse Sale, purchased for $280,000 by Robert Cleary as agent for Bill Peshina's Royal Wire Products. Through two sessions at the Pennsylvania State Farm Show Complex, a total of 468 horses sold for $32.65 million and average of $69,769. The gross is up 16.6 percent from 2018 when 473 horses sold for $27.99 million. The average is up 17.8 percent compared to last year's $59,182. Make My Deo, by American Ideal out of Electric Fool, is a half-brother to Rodeo Rock, who has earned more than $700,000 in his career for Royal Wire Products. The family also includes millionaire Western Shore. The colt was consigned by Preferred Equine Marketing and bred by Deo Volente Farms. "He's a nice horse," Peshina said about Make My Deo. "We bought Rodeo Rock as a yearling too and he's done just fine for us. This is a very nice colt, so we were happy to get him. I liked just about everything about him; he's just a nice horse all around. And it's a good farm we bought him from, they're good people. "It's a big expense for us, we've never gone that high before. We're going to see what happens. Hopefully it works out. We'll find out next year." Second on the bestsellers list was trotting colt Delayed Hanover, by Southwind Frank out of Don't Wait Up, who was purchased for $230,000 by Ake Svanstedt for owner Melby Gard. He is from the family of international winner Order By Keeper as well as mare Amour Heiress, whose colt Spy Booth sold for $460,000 Monday. The family also includes 2014 Hambletonian winner Trixton. He was consigned and bred by Hanover Shoe Farms. "I liked everything, it was good," Svanstedt said. "He is a good-looking horse. It will be interesting to see how he does on the racetrack. He has good conformation and the family on the mother is also very good. He is a good colt." Next was trotting colt Ghetto Boy, by Cantab Hall out of Galloway, who went for $200,000 to agent Robert Lindstrom. His family includes Dan Patch Award-winner Maven. The colt was consigned by Concord Stud Farm and bred by Order By Stable. Filly trotter Donna Soprano, by Donato Hanover out of O'Brien Award-winner Windsong Soprano, was purchased for $190,000 by Serge Godin's Determination stable. She is a half-sister to Ontario Sire Stakes champions Jula She's Magic (2019) and Tony Soprano (2015). She was consigned by Preferred Equine Marketing and bred by White Birch Farm. Sun B Kini, a pacing filly by Always B Miki out of One For The Beach, was purchased by Dana Parham for $170,000. Her family includes the dams of stakes-winners Divine Caroline and This Is The Plan. She was consigned by Concord Stud Farm and bred by S R F Stable. Team Allard bought trotting filly Oh My Goodness, by Andover Hall out of Oh My Darlin, for $160,000. She is from the family of Dan Patch Award-winner Cedar Dove, who is the dam of Team Allard's Hambletonian Oaks winner When Dovecry. She was consigned by Concord Stud Farm and bred by Windsong Stable. Also selling for $160,000 was pacing colt Abuckabett Hanover, by Betting Line out of All Tucked Up. He was purchased by Tony Alagna as agent for Cousins Stable. His family includes stakes-winner Thong. The colt was consigned and bred by Hanover Shoe Farms. The yearling portion of the Standardbred Horse Sale concludes Wednesday. The final session begins at 10 a.m. (EST) at the Pennsylvania State Farm Show Complex. The two-day mixed sale begins Thursday morning at 10. For complete results, visit The Black Book. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

Freehold, NJ --- Golden Tricks may not have made it to Mohawk this weekend, but Freehold Raceway suited her just fine.   The Ake Svanstedt-trained filly dominated the Garden State Trot for 3-year-old harness racing fillies on Friday, winning by 6 3/4 lengths in 1:56.2.   Leaving from post position four in the field of six, driver Andy Miller tucked her in the three-hole early, rating behind Starita and Sexy Wow. At the five-eighths point, Miller pulled with Golden Tricks, and she boldly accelerated to the lead. Starita had no response, and Golden Tricks rolled away to victory. Her final quarter was a sharp 28.1 seconds.   This is the seventh career win for the Brixton Medial Inc-owned filly, who has now bankrolled more than $260,000. She finished seventh in the Breeders' Crown elimination last weekend, and won the Hudson at Yonkers Raceway earlier in the year.   Starita, Marveloustrix, Princess Deo, Sexy Wow, and Taja Mahala completed the order of finish.   Live racing continues on Saturday at Freehold, with a first post time of 12:30 PM EDT. The 12-race program is headlined by the Garden State Trot for 3-year-old colts and geldings.   From Freehold Raceway    

Freehold, NJ --- Two weeks ago, No Drama Please was the solid favorite in the harness racing final of the New Jersey Sire Stakes-Standardbred Development Fund (NJSS-SDF) for 3-year-old colt & gelding trotters. Unfortunately for him, he faded late to finish sixth, while Cotton to You pulled off the upset.   Now, the Tom Fanning-trained trotter will seek his revenge in the Garden State Trot this Saturday at Freehold Raceway. He drew the inside post in the field of six, while NJSS-SDF champion Cotton to You will leave from post position five, for trainer Lucas Wallin and driver Jim Marohn Jr. Wallin will also send out Sovereign Deo, who broke stride after the start in the final and lost all chance. He rebounded with a runner-up finish at Pocono Downs last out.   Three new shooters will seek to challenge the NJSS-SDF veterans. Sheena's Boy drew post position three, for Ake Svanstedt and George Brennan. He finished second in the Muscle Hill at the Meadowlands earlier in the year, and crossed the wire fourth in the Yonkers Trot, before being disqualified for breaking stride in the stretch. Last out, he went off stride in the Bluegrass at the Red Mile. If he can stay trotting here, he's got a big chance.   Ray Schnittker will send out New Jersey Futurity winner Alternative Fact, who drew the outside post. He's won five races in a row, most recently winning a conditioned trot in wet weather at Harrah's Philadelphia. Jason Bartlett will be in the sulky.   Lucius Vorenus, shipping from Vernon Downs and trained by Nick Surick, rounds out the field.   The Garden State Trot is scheduled as the third race, with a post time of 1:10 PM EDT. The first of 12 races at Freehold on Saturday will be at approximately 12:30 PM EDT.   From Freehold Raceway  

Third Shift and Moon Bridge got a little unscheduled time off recently because of sickness, but the two Ake Svanstedt trainees are ready to go Friday (Oct. 18) in the single Breeders Crown elimination for 2-year-old male trotters at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Thirteen horses were entered for the event, with the connections of Real Cool Sam, Port Perry, and Capricornus accepting byes to advance directly to the final. The top seven finishers from the remaining 10-horse field will join that trio in the $600,000 final Oct. 25 at Mohawk. Two-time Grand Circuit-winner Amigo Volo, a son of Father Patrick from the stable of trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman, is the elim's 5-2 morning-line favorite from post three. Dexter Dunn will drive the gelding, who won divisions of the Bluegrass and International Stallion stakes at Lexington's Red Mile in his most recent outings. Third Shift, the New York Sire Stakes champion, is 8-1 and will be driven by Svanstedt from post one. Moon Bridge, who won the Ontario Sire Stakes championship this past Saturday at Mohawk, is 10-1 and will start from post seven with Sylvain Filion. Svanstedt considered sending the horses to the recently concluded Grand Circuit meet at Red Mile, but the health of the horses changed those plans. "Third Shift was sick, so we left him at home and decided to go for the Breeders Crown," Svanstedt said. "It was the same with Moon Beam. He was sick and hadn't raced for one month before the (Ontario) final. But both of them are sound and healthy now and I hope they can do good races." Third Shift enters Friday having last raced in the New York championship Sept. 14 at Batavia Downs. The colt, by two-time Breeders Crown champ Chapter Seven out of Overnight Command, zipped around the half-mile oval in a track- and stakes-record 1:56. He shaved more than a second off the previous Batavia standard of 1:57.1 and three-fifths of a second off the stakes record, which was set last year by Dan Patch Award winner Gimpanzee. "He hasn't raced since then, but he was very good in the final," said Svanstedt, who owns Third Shift with Mellby Gard Inc. "He has trained good and everything is good with him. He has everything. He is fast and strong and has a very good head. He is a horse that always tries; he wants to win. He's a good horse." Third Shift has won three of six races, finished second twice, and earned $198,212. His fastest win time of the campaign, 1:54.4, came at seven-eighths-mile Vernon Downs in a preliminary round of the New York Sire Stakes. "He is a big horse, but he handled the (half-mile) tracks good," Svanstedt said. "I hope he can go faster on the big track (at seven-eighths-mile Mohawk). He raced in (1):54 at Vernon in his third race, so I think he can go faster on the big track." Moon Bridge was unraced for nearly a month when he captured the Ontario title, beating Port Perry by a head in 1:55.4. The colt, by E L Titan out of Classic Belle, has won two of six races and earned $149,953 for owners Esa Lahtinen, Janne Korpi, and Jussi Hietalahti. He was bred by Lahtinen's Overseas Farms and Korpi. "He was good," Svanstedt said. "He is a nervous horse, but he handles it good. We have to be careful with him; we always take it easy with him. But he is a good racehorse. He comes to race." All eliminations for 2-year-olds, which go for $25,000 each, are Friday at Mohawk. Hypnotic AM and Ramona Hill are the morning-line favorites in the elims for 2-year-old filly trotters; Baby Your The Best, Alicorn and Lyons Sentinel get the nods in the elims for 2-year-old filly pacers; and Tall Dark Stranger is the choice in the single elimination for 2-year-old male pacers. Racing begins at 7:50 p.m. (EDT) Friday. The $600,000 finals for 2-year-olds will be Oct. 25 at Mohawk, with an early 7 p.m. post time. Elimination winners, in an order determined by lot, draw for post positions one through five for the finals. The draws for the 2-year-old finals, except for the colt-and-gelding pace, will be conducted Friday following the eliminations. The draw for the colt-and-gelding pace will be Tuesday at the post-position draw and press conference at Woodbine Mohawk Park. For Friday's complete entries, click here. Eliminations for 3-year-olds and up are Saturday, with a 7:10 p.m. post time. For Saturday's complete entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA    

Chester, PA -- Knutsson Trotting Inc.'s Muscle M Up ($5.80) strode straight to the front and never looked back in Sunday's (Oct. 13) $25,000 winners-over harness racing trot at Harrah's Philadelphia, posting a 1:52.3 win with plenty in reserve. Trainer-driver Ãke Svanstedt put the 4-year-old son of Muscle Hill in play from the outset of the one-mile race, clearing Theresademoninme (Yannick Gingras) easily through a :27 first quarter before rating a :56.1 half. Up the backstretch, Muscle M Up started to edge away, extending his lead to two lengths past three-quarters in 1:24.   Muscle M Up remained unchallenged to the winning post, keeping a late bid from Scirocco Rob (Dexter Dunn) 1-1/2 lengths at bay, while Theresademoninme checked in a one-paced third. The win was the fifth on the season for Muscle M Up and the ninth of his career. In the sub-featured event of the afternoon, an $18,000 top-level conditioned pace, American Boy N ($4.60) pushed out of the pocket with three-eighths to go and overtook pacesetter Lyons Steel en route to a 1:50.2 score. Andy McCarthy drove the 8-year-old American Ideal gelding for trainer Michael Marx Jr. and the Windermere Stable LLC. Two carryovers will greet punters on Wednesday afternoon (Oct. 16): a $5,881.60 carryover in the fifth-race Jackpot Hi-5, and a $2,228.02 carryover in the Pick-4, which begins in race seven. Post time is 12:25 p.m. Eastern.   by James Witherite, Harrah's Philadelphia racing media  

LEXINGTON, KY--In her second start for trainer Ake Svanstedt Beautiful Sin pounced from a pocket trip to win the 54th Kentucky Filly Futurity--a $267,000 single dash sponsored by the Father Patrick Syndicate and Diamond Creek Farm--on Sunday, Oct. 6 at The Red Mile. When Dovescry, sent the 3-5 favorite, left for the lead from the center of the gate while Svanstedt tucked Beautiful Sin onto the pacesetter's helmet heading to a :27.1 opening quarter. Golden Tricks, stablemate to Beautiful Sin, progressed uncovered from sixth up the backstretch and flushed cover from Millies Possesion moving to a :55.2 half. Millies Possesion stalled circling the final turn as When Dovescry accelerated to three-quarters in 1:22.2 and retreated into the stretch. Beautiful Sin angled from the pocket while When Dovescry drifted and tired, leaving a gap for The Ice Dutchess to shoot through. The Ice Dutchess gave late pursuit to new leader Beautiful Sin into the final eighth but settled for second. When Dovescry held third. "It's a total surprise compared to my thinking two months ago; I'm really shocked by this," said Lennart Agren, who owns Beautiful Sin through S R F Stable. "I thought I had to [switch trainers] before the four-year-old season. [Ake Svanstedt] said she was nice but he had some issues to fix. She was a really nice filly two years ago in the sales ring." Topping the 2017 Lexington Yearling Sale, Beautiful Sin--bred by Jeff Gural and Moon Goddess LLC--sold for $480,000. The sophomore daughter of Muscle Hill has five victories from 14 starts and has earned $372,867. She paid $9.00 to win. by Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY--Trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt darted Six Pack to the lead moving to the final turn and raced the clock to a 1:49.2 world-record harness racing victory in the $145,000 Cantab Hall Allerage Farms Open Trot--sponsored by Jeff & Paula Gural--on Saturday, Oct. 5 at The Red Mile. Following two recalls caused by equipment issues with Trolley the starting gate sent the field to race. Eurobond left for the lead from post 4 and took the field past a :27 first quarter while Lindy The Great raced second and Crystal Fashion sat third. Svanstedt sent Six Pack from fourth nearing a :54.2 and dashed to the front rounding the final turn, opening his lead towards three-quarters in 1:21.3. Through the stretch Svanstedt urged Six Pack as the four-year-old Muscle Mass colt won by open lengths over Lindy The Great with Mission Accepted finishing third. "He had been sick for about a month but [his] last race was good--he came home fast," Svanstedt said after the race of his return to the races in the Caesars Trotting Classic. The 1:49.2 mile bests the previous record for a four-year-old trotting stallion of 1:50.1 set by Chapter Seven in 2012 and equaled by Eurobond and Southwind Chrome. "Today I thought we were going to break the record [but] he needed a little bit of help," Svanstedt also said. "It was a little bit slow but he came home good. He's a little lazy when he's on the front [but] I tried." Co-owned by Svanstedt with Little E LLC, Knutsson Trotting, Stall Kalmar and Lawrence Berg, Six Pack won his 18th race from 33 starts, earning $1,658,105. "It was a little nerve-racking with the recalls to tell you the truth," said Jeff Gural, who co-owns Six Pack through Little E LLC. "I've actually dreamed of giving myself a trophy because I've never done it. I've given the Hambletonian trophy the last five, six years and the trophy for this race so it's a real thrill. This horse has had a lot of bad posts and he's cut most of the miles where he got beat--he got beat at the wire. He did all the work but then somebody else gets a record. So I was really happy for him today." Six Pack paid $5.00 to win. Grand Circuit action concludes at The Red Mile on Sunday, Oct. 6 with the 127th renewal of the Kentucky Futurity, which goes as a single heat with a field of 12 for $450,000. The 54th Kentucky Filly Futurity also goes as a single dash with an 11-horse draw for $267,000. Two divisions of the $540,000 Tattersalls Pace, the $69,500 Allerage Farms Fillies and Mares Trot and $87,000 Allerage Farms Fillies and Mares Pace will also go on the eight-race card. Racing gets underway for the season finale with first-race post at 1:00 p.m. (EDT). For full results and entries, click here.  By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

Lexington, KY — Red Redemption topped Wednesday’s (Oct. 2) purchases at the second night of the Lexington Selected Sale, going for $320,000 to Ake Svanstedt. The harness racing trotting colt, by Muscle Hill out of stakes-winner Magenta Hall, is a half-brother to millionaire Dewycolorintheline. He was consigned by Preferred Equine and bred by Little E LLC. Paul Kelley purchased the next two highest sellers, trotting colt Balenciaga for $270,000 and trotting filly Captured for $250,000. Balenciaga is by Chapter Seven out of Iluvmyjimmychoos, who was a winner on the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes circuit. Balenciaga was consigned by breeder Crawford Farms. Captured is by Muscle Hill out of Highland Glider. Her family includes stakes-winner Godiva Hall. She was consigned by Kentuckiana Farms and bred by James Wilhite Jr. Southwind Xena, a filly by first-crop sire Betting Line out of Southwind Solara, was the top-selling pacer. She was purchased for $230,000 by Bill Donovan and is a half-sister to Little Brown Jug winner Southwind Ozzi and stakes-winner Southwind Silence. She was consigned by Preferred Equine and bred by Southwind Farms. Beach Chief, a son of Somebeachsomewhere out of Chiffon Hanover, led the pacing colts. He sold for $210,000 to The Boys are Back in Town Stable. He was consigned by Spring Haven Farm and bred by the Estate of George F. Hempt Trust. A total of 174 horses sold Wednesday, grossing $13.06 million and averaging $75,103. The average was a 10.3 percent drop from last year’s second night, which saw 163 yearlings average $83,748 — a record for a second session. Through two days, this year’s five-day sale grossed $31.27 million for 292 horses and averaged $107,103. The gross is a 17.7-percent increase compared to last year (for 265 horses) and the average is a 6.89-percent hike from last year’s $100,192. A total of 108 horses have sold for at least $100,000 this year. Last year through two sessions the total was 110. Muscle Hill and Father Patrick led the trotting sires in gross, with 45 Muscle Hill yearlings totaling $6.63 million ($147,400 average) and 33 Father Patrick yearlings totaling $4.70 million ($142,485). The two also led in average among trotting sires with more than one horse sold. Somebeachsomewhere and first-crop sire Always B Miki topped the pacing sires in gross, with 36 Somebeachsomewhere yearlings totaling $4.18 million ($116,139 average) and 40 Always B Miki yearlings totaling $3.43 million ($85,900). Somebeachsomewhere led in average followed by Captaintreacherous at $90,806 for 31 yearlings sold. The five-day yearling sale continues through Saturday, with each session beginning at 7 p.m. at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion. For complete results, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, September 21, 2019- Favored Darling Mearas S (Ake Svanstedt, $4.60) threw down the gauntlet Saturday night (Sept. 21st), winning Yonkers Raceway's $42,000 Open Handicap Trot. Despite no previous small-track experience and having to requalify after two Tioga breaks, Darling Mearas S beat the boys and made them cry. Offering high speed from post position No. 4, Darling Mearas S was gingerly-handled early after making the lead. She was apparently emboldened soon thereafter, stuffing Eye ofa Tiger AS (Jason Bartlett) in behind. A :27.1 opening quarter-mile gave way to a rated :57.4 intermission, and the lass was gone. She widened passing a 1:26.4 three-quarters, taking 2½ lengths into the lane. The margin was 4¼ lengths by the time she hit the wire in 1:54.4. There'sademonimme (George Brennan) lasted for second after trying it first-up, with Will Take Charge (Jordan Stratton) third. Eye ofa Tiger AS and a returning Melady's Monet (Eric Goodell) rounded out the payees. For Darling Mearas S, a 6-year-old Swedish homebred daughter of Cantab Hall trained by her driver for owner Snogarps Gard, it was her second win in 10 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $18.80, the triple returned $170 and the superfecta paid $493. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

CHESTER, PA - The two-year-old pacing colt Captain Groovy saw his bid to win all four of his Pennsylvania Stallion Series preliminaries look good for much of his race at Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday - until he got a bit tired late and was caught by $256.00 shock winner Keystone Dash in 1:53.4. The Sweet Lou - Keystone Dawn colt Keystone Dash did dash away quickly at the start from post seven and had the lead well before the :27.1 opener for Andrew McCarthy. Captain Groovy, starting just to his outside, was patiently guided up to command in front of the stands, and his swift stepping past the middle poles of :56 and 1:25 seemed to have paid off as most of the competition had melted off by the far turn. Most, but not all - Keystone Dash stayed connected in the pocket, eased out in the drive, and outpaced the Captain to the wire by a half-length, triggering the biggest win payoff at Philly since Thrillonthebeach paid $264.00 for $2 in September 2017. Far back in his first three races but better in finishing second against "nw2" company in his last race, Keystone Dash continued the improvement with the big upset for trainer Ãke Svanstedt and the ownership of Ãke Svanstedt Inc. In another of the three $20,000 Stallion Series divisions, the Well Said-Bodacious Hanover colt Lake Charles took a lifetime best of 1:52, a clocking which matched the fastest posted by this group in either Sire Stakes or Stallion Series action to date. Jordan Stratton went to the lead with the victorious Ray Schnittker trainee by the :27.2 quarter, yielded to the brushing favorite Sandbetweenmytoes as that one took the field past a :56 half and 1:23.3 three-quarters, then moved out for the drive and went by a bit more easily than the ¾ of a length final margin may suggest. Lake Charles is undefeated in three Stallion Series starts for the ownership of Schnittker, Dr. John Egloff, Max J. Hempt, and Steven Arnold. The other StS division saw another colt remain undefeated in the series, as the Somebeachsomewhere - Temptation Hanover baby Patriot Nation made it two straight since dropping down from the Sire Stakes, here lowering his mark to 1:53.4. Driver George Napolitano Jr. used his favored front-end tactics, and after fractions of :27.4, :57.1, and 1:25.3 the youngster had more than enough left, defeating Hunter Hill by 2¼ lengths by trainer Andrew Harris and the partnership of Michael Goldberg and A Harris Racing LLC. The Bureau of Standardbred Racing within the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission is the official tallier of the points earned in the Sire Stakes and the Stallion Series, but a quick, unofficial calculation performed after the last StS race today revealed the following nine horses with the most points: 1. Captain Groovy; 2. Lake Charles; 3. Lyons Music; 4. (tie) Cheerio Hill and Patriot Nation; 6. Paddy All Day; 7. Complete Kaos; 8. (tie) Sandbetweenmytoes and Sombodyitreasure. All eight of the Stallion Series Championships will be held on Monday, September 9 at Pocono. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

Monticello, NY  - On Monday August 12 Monticello Raceway and the New York Sire Stakes program featured 2-year-old harness racing trotting filly's. The 7 race card featured 2 divisions of Sire Stakes each racing for a purse of $51,000, 3 splits of the Excelsior A group ($15,000) and 2 Excelsior B ($6,500) The first heat of Sire Stakes was a short 5 horse field, the 1/5 betting favorite Seventimesalady, a $132,000 yearling purchase started from the outside from post 5, 2 of the starters made miscues in the middle of the first turn, after the early commotion Seventimesalady made the front and was uncontested through the mile, cutting fractions of 29.3,59.2, 1:29.2 and uncorking a last quarter of 28.4 to score an easy 5 length victory in 1:58.1. Ake Svanstedt trains,drives and co owns Seventimesalady, a daughter of Chapter Seven - Ava Marion, she picked up her 3rd consecutive NYSS win for owners Ake Svanstedt, Little E, Knutsson Trotting and L. Berg. The pocket sitting Flotus finished second followed by Illdoitmyself. Race 7 for the final heat of Sire Stakes and again it was Team Svanstedt who scored with Miss Jubilation who started from Post 4 and was part of the Svanstedt entry with Destiny Blue Chip, the Chapter Seven - Seven Blue Muscles lass scored a wire to wire win in 1:58.4 over Sorprese (Dan Daley)and Destiny Blue Chip - Charlie Norris. Miss Jubilation earned her 2nd Sire Stake victory of the year for owners Ake Svanstedt, Little E, Triple Play Trotters & Stolz Geiger. Excelsior A winners were C And T's Credit (Credit Winner - Love to Flaunt) who picked up her second consecutive win in this company in 2:01 for trainer John Stark. Dan Daley scored with the longest shot on the board at 25-1 with Lady Jeter (Muscles Yankee - Salt Hill Brigid) who picked up her maiden win in 2:00.3. Nasty Gal (Conway Hall - Dreama Littledream) scored in 2:00.2 for Vernon Down based horseman Gate Brunet. The combination of driver Michael Merton and trainer Dale Lawton garnered both heats of the Excelsior B with Dogs of War (Conway Hall - Extreme Balance) scored in 2:03.1 and returned $5.40, Some Crazy Fool (Crazed - Someway) won in in 2:02.2 The next leg of NY Sire Stakes is next Monday August 19 when 2 Year Old Trotting Colts come to town, post time is 12:50. By, Shawn Wiles, for Monticello Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 10, 2019--Funny thing about Six Pack (Ake Svanstedt, $2.70). Whenever he's invaded Yonkers Raceway, the end result is not a fair fight. Such was the case again Saturday night (Aug. 10th), when Six Pack drilled seven outclassed foes in the co-featured $46,000 Open Handicap Trot. Making short work an assigned eight-hole, Six Pack left around Eye ofa Tiger AS (Jason Bartlett), t hen made even shorter work of the teletimer. Never threatened at any point, he widened at every (:28, 57.2, 1:25, 1:53.1) point. The result was... a-matching the all-age trot track record, set by Svanstedt’s filly Plunge Blue Chip last September, and b- 6¼-length win over Lord Cromwell (Austin Siegelman), and c-a fifth consecutive win here, and d-the fastest local trot mile of the season, and e-a new track record for his weight class. For the record, New Heaven (Jim Marohn Jr.) was third, with Eye ofa Tiger AS and Such an Angel (Eric Goodell) settling for the small change. Six Pack, a 4-year-old $1.5 million statebred son of Muscle Mass co-owned by his driver/trainer, Little E LLC, Knuttson Trotting. Stall Kalmer and Lars Berg, it was his second win in seven seasonal starts (career 17-for-30). The exacta paid $28.80, the triple returned $173 and the superfecta paid $1,122. Not lost on Svanstedt was throwing down a gauntlet in the hopes of getting an invitation to October's million-dollar International Trot. "We wanted to see him back on a short track and he handled it well," Svanstedt said. "He's not been lucky in a many of his races this season. That's the biggest difference in him as a 4-year-old. "The owners wanted to enter him (tonight). We're hoping he's asked to race in the International." The weekly $46,000 adult-table pace was won by a down-the-road Scott Rocks (Goodell, $4.80) in 1:51.3. The 9-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding went up and over $995,000 in career earnings after a 57th lifetime win. For his part, Goodell won four of the night's last seven races. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, N.Y. - Tristan Sjoberg distinctly recalls a trip to Ake Svanstedt's stable in March 2018 when he visited his 2- and 3-year-olds in training. Before he left the barn, Svanstedt pulled out Six Pack. The freshman New York Sire Stakes Champion the previous fall hadn't embarked on his sophomore season yet, but Sjoberg loved what he saw. "He brought Six Pack out and said, 'take one good look, take one mental picture of this horse here right now, because this is the perfect conformation of a horse. This is the perfect horse,' " Sjoberg remembered. Sjoberg watched Six Pack's 3-year-old harness racing campaign with interest and soon, the entire trotting world followed. He won the Empire Breeder's Classic Final, the Stanley Dancer, the Yonkers Trot, the Kentucky Futurity, and the Matron and finished second in the Beal and the TVG Open Trot against older horses. By year's end, Six Pack's earnings swelled to $1,358,290 for owners Svanstedt, Jeff Gural's Little E, and Stall Kalmar. Six Pack also secured the Dan Patch Award for champion 3-year-old male trotter. Sjoberg got the opportunity to join the group this season and bought in under his stable Knutsson Trotting. "Jeff being a close friend and partner of mine, (Six Pack) was my favorite horse of the 3-year-olds and I was given an opportunity to buy into the horse earlier this year," Sjoberg said. "I thought it was great, so I took a piece of him and I'm very happy with that." Saturday night (August 10), Six Pack will return to Yonkers Raceway in the $46,000 Open Handicap Trot. Assigned post eight, the 4-year-old Muscle Mass son enters in the mist of a mixed season. Six Pack began his 2019 campaign with a 1:53.1 win in a $50,000 leg of the Graduate at the Meadowlands May 18. He was third to Crystal Fashion and Fiftydollarbill in the next leg June 8 and second to the latter rival in a third leg in a 1:50.2 mile June 21. Six Pack met Atlanta in the $250,000 Graduate Series Final July 6. He started from post nine and forged to the lead in a :54.2 half-mile, but lost to the Hambletonian winner by a neck while trotting 1:49.1 "I thought he was absolutely excellent considering where he was," Sjoberg said. "He wasn't meant to be 100 percent at that race. The Swedish trainers usually don't have them super ready at the beginning of the season, they do need a couple of tighteners and he is a big horse and we're expecting a long season. A lot of the big races are near the end of the season. "To beat Atlanta, you've got to get a good trip and you have to be 100 percent," Sjoberg continued. "He was probably 95 percent at the time. He wasn't quite enough and the form Atlanta was in was fantastic. It was a great race, one of my favorite races, even if we lost by a neck." Six Pack faced Atlanta and Crystal Fashion again the following week in the $450,000 Hambletonian Maturity. Starting from post 11, Six Pack got away seventh and was interfered with late in the 9-furlong stakes, finishing third behind his two rivals. Three weeks later on Hambletonian Day, Six Pack blasted from post nine in the $280,000 Cashman, but was tracked down late by Crystal Fashion and Guardian Angel As. "Six Pack is a big horse, he takes a bit of time to get going, and I think it's been a good season so far. I wouldn't call it a great one yet," Sjoberg said. "He's come back strong, he's had a lot of tough races, and particularly a lot of bad posts. He's been stuck on the outside, had a trailing post, he was interfered with, so he really hasn't had a lot of racing luck this year." Sjoberg, present for the difficult loss on North American harness racing's biggest day, felt the :26.3 first quarter compromised Six Pack. He also conceded the three weeks between races heading into the Cashman may have been too much. "I thought the first quarter really took a bit of sting out of him because he had to leave so hard from post nine to get to the front," Sjoberg said. "On those kind of days, no quarter is asked, no quarter is given. Nobody was letting anyone down to the rail. From post nine, there was just no hole to get to. He had to go to the front and I think that initially took the sting out of him. That whole first turn was a killer. "Three weeks in between races might not have been ideal from the Hambo Maturity to the Cashman," he continued. "In hindsight, maybe we should have thrown in one more race in between. I think that was a little on Ake's mind as well." With another three-week gap to Six Pack's next major target, the Maple Leaf Trot, Svanstedt aimed for a tightener and entered Six Pack in the local weekly trotting feature one week after Hambletonian Day. Besides the timing, Sjoberg also hopes Six Pack can make his case for a ticket to the $1 million Yonkers International Trot October 12. Atlanta has already accepted an invitation, and Sjoberg wants to see the rivalry continue. "The International Trot is one of the most absolutely important races for Swedish people. We don't even call it the International Trot, we call it the World Championship of harness racing, so that's really how important that race is for us Swedes," Sjoberg said. "I remember when I was at Roosevelt, I would get up early in the morning. It wasn't televised, but it would be on the radio. I would turn the radio on and listen to all those great races. I remember when one of my favorite horses won it (in 1987), Callit. Legolas, that was the first race he was beaten at when Ideal du Gazeau won. It's a very important race. "I'm super excited to have a horse that's in contention for this race," he continued. "I think with these kind of races, it's very important also to try and get not just the flag horses from abroad, but it's also important to look at the rivalries you have in North America at the time. You want to see those continue in the International Trot as well." Saturday's trotting feature also includes Eye Ofa Tiger As, who beat Will Take Charge last out July 27 and seeks a repeat win in the local Open Handicap from post seven. Weslynn Dancer's last Yonkers start resulted in an Open win and she returns after tries in the Armbro Flight, Cleveland Trotting Classic, and Spirit of Massachusetts Trot. She will start from post five. Tight Lines finished eighth in the Cashman and drew an advantageous post two dropping back into the Open. New Heaven, Cash Me Out, Lord Cromwell, and Such An Angel complete the lineup. Although Six Pack is likely to be a heavy favorite, Sjoberg isn't sure how the horse's trip will set up from the far outside post. Contrary to Six Pack's recent tactics, Sjoberg feels he is better off cover than on the lead. Six Pack's only loss at Yonkers from four starts came in a NYSS leg at 2 when he started from post eight. "I would love for him to get a helmet drive and get some cover and give the horse a breather and maybe attack with a quarter left to go. I would love some live cover, but whether that's possible or not, that's debatable," Sjoberg said. "Obviously from post eight, you either take him down immediately and hope you get good cover or you go to the front again. That's it," he continued. "There's some good horses there with Eye Ofa Tiger As, who's in the form of his life, and Weslynn Dancer, she's a very good mare. There's a couple of horses who are tough to beat on a half-mile track and know Yonkers. I think a lot will be decided in the first 50 yards." Saturday night's card also features the $46,000 Open Handicap Pace and $37,000 4-Year-Old Open Handicap Pace. Yonkers Raceway features live harness racing Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. First post time is 6:50 p.m. For entries to the races, click here. By Brandon Valvo, for the SOA of NY  

In past years, when Robert LeBlanc went to The Meadowlands to watch the Hambletonian, he always thought how cool it would be to have a horse in the race. This year, he finds out. LeBlanc, a retired vice president at IBM who has partnered on horses in trainer Tony Alagna's stable for three years, is among the owners of Pilot Discretion. The colt competes in the second of Saturday's (Aug. 3) two $70,000 Hambletonian Stakes eliminations at the Big M, where the top-five finishers from each division return for the $1 million final later in the day. Pilot Discretion will start from post three with Andy McCarthy in the sulky. He is 10-1 on the morning line. Greenshoe is the 4-5 favorite in the division. The Hambletonian Day card begins at noon. The Hambletonian, the sport's premier race for 3-year-old trotters, and $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, restricted to 3-year-old female trotters, will be featured during a live 90-minute broadcast on CBS Sports Network from 4-5:30 p.m. (EDT). "As an owner, this is our race," said LeBlanc, a Canadian who now resides in Austin, Texas. "Everybody wants to be in the Hambletonian. Having a horse that's good enough, it may never happen again. But I'm enjoying the ride. Tony and the team have done an amazing job with him. Tony has managed him very well and he just keeps getting better and better." Pilot Discretion has won six of eight career races and never finished worse than third, earning $174,029. He was 2-for-2 in 2018 but saw his season end because of sickness. The son of Muscle Hill-Self Indulgent won his first four races this season, including the Goodtimes Stakes, before finishing second to Greenshoe in a division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial and third in a division of the Tompkins-Geers Stakes. "We raced him in the Tompkins-Geers just to get him another race because he'd had a month break between the Goodtimes and the Dancer," Alagna said. "We wanted to race him and give him last week off. We raced him off the pace; we didn't want to put him on the front again in his last start since we put him on the front in the Dancer. He closed very well, :26.3. "He seems great. He's very fresh. Even the night I warmed him up his last start at the Meadowlands, he was bucking and playing and kicking just going his first trip. He hasn't done that in the last couple starts. So, I think he's as fresh as a horse could be going into it." For LeBlanc, who owns Pilot Discretion with Dave Anderson and John Fodera, it's been difficult to wait for Hambletonian time to arrive. "I've got no more fingernails, I've bitten them off," LeBlanc said. "It's been a buildup every week. I'll be pretty wound up by Saturday. I'll be super excited. I've already told my wife that I have to watch the race outside (the grandstand) because I'll be the one screaming the loudest. "If you see a lunatic screaming if he's coming down the stretch with a shot (to win) you know it will be me. Every owner will be a lunatic, absolutely. That's the fun of it. This is what makes this game so much fun." Can Ake Svanstedt win another Hambletonian? Ake Svanstedt, who won the 2017 Hambletonian through disqualification with Perfect Spirit, will send two horses into Saturday's event. Marseille is 5-1 in the second elimination, where Greenshoe is the 4-5 favorite, and Soul Strong is 8-1 in the first elim, where Gimpanzee is the 2-1 choice. Svanstedt trains both horses and will drive Marseille, who is owned by Svanstedt, Stefan Balazsi's Order By Stable, and Howard Taylor. Dexter Dunn is listed to drive Soul Strong, who is owned by Cees Faber's Stable Why Not. Marseille upset Greenshoe to win the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial on June 29. For the year, he has won three of five races and never been worse than third. The son of Muscle Hill-Order By Wish heads to the Hambletonian off a career-best 1:51.4 victory in a division of the Tompkins-Geers on July 20. "He raced good the last time and he is training normal," Svanstedt said. Marseille was limited to four races last year because of soreness. When he returned this year, his behavior left much to be desired. The connections considered gelding Marseille but decided to hold off and gave the colt another opportunity to show improvement. He finished second in a qualifier and then won his seasonal debut, which ended the discussion. "Maybe he heard what we were talking about," Svanstedt said, smiling. "After he qualified and started racing, his head changed totally. He is not a stud when he comes to race. He has focus. He is a real racehorse and he wants to race. He is all business." Soul Strong was winless in eight races last year but has won three of six starts in 2019. He finished second to Marseille in the Tompkins-Geers. "He was not so good gaited when we started but his gait is better and better," Svanstedt said. "He was always a little sore and it was a balance how much we could train and race. But he has a good heart and has gotten stronger and stronger. We gelded him over the winter, and he is better now. He is older and stronger. He is going to be faster and faster." Svanstedt, like many others, considers Greenshoe the horse to beat. "Greenshoe is No. 1 but behind him it's wide open," Svanstedt said. "In the Hambletonian, there is good money behind the winner also. Of course, I want to win. But I must be realistic. "It's tough to be (in the Hambletonian). Everything must be a hundred percent perfect that day. When all the horses are on the same level, it can be the post position and the horse must be a hundred percent that day. Everything must be good." Andy & Julie Miller hoping for Summitt In Sight Team Miller - the wife-husband duo of trainer Julie and driver Andy - has hit the board in the past three Hambletonians and is hoping for more of the same on Saturday with Summit In Sight. The colt is 20-1 on the morning line in the first elimination, where Gimpanzee is the 2-1 favorite. "He is a longshot for the race but we're going to give him a chance," Julie Miller said. "We think we've got him sharp and ready. Basically, we need a lot of luck and hopefully he puts his best foot forward." Summit In Sight, owned by Natalia Stroy's Stroy Inc. and the Andy Miller Stable, was limited to two races in 2018 after suffering a bout of colic in the spring. He began this year with a sixth-place finish before putting together a streak of six starts where he finished either first (four times) or second. The string was broken when he went off stride and finished eighth in the Beal Memorial final. He heads to the Hambletonian off a fifth-place finish in a division of the Dancer. "We shut him down thinking he could be a nice 3-year-old," Julie Miller said about the son of Muscle Hill-Bluff. "We got him ready early and he flashed some talent. He had some unfortunate luck in the Beal with how the fractions of the race went; we really thought we had a good chance in there. "I trained him at the Meadowlands on Saturday just to get a good mile in him. I'm hoping I've got it all into place. He really developed from (age) 2 to 3 maturity wise. His gait got more extended and he grew up mentally as well. He's a more manageable horse, so however Andy chooses to drive him, suits him." Team Miller's past three finishes in the Hambletonian were a second by Met's Hall in 2018, third-placed second by Devious Man in 2017, and fast-closing third by Sutton in 2016. "Hopefully we can keep that momentum going," Julie Miller said. Hambletonian Elimination One PP-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Cantab Fashion-Dexter Dunn-Jim Campbell-6/1 2-Summit In Sight-Andy Miller-Julie Miller-20/1 3-Swandre The Giant-David Miller-Ron Burke-7/2 4-Soul Strong-Dexter Dunn-Ake Svanstedt-8/1 5-Mr Vicktor-Tyler Buter-Jennifer Lappe-15/1 6-Osterc-Yannick Gingras-Per Engblom-15/1 7-Gimpanzee-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-2/1 8-Green Manalishi S-Tim Tetrick-Marcus Melander-5/2 Hambletonian Elimination Two PP-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Forbidden Trade-Bob McClure-Luc Blais-12/1 2-Gerry-Orjan Kihlstrom-Marcus Melander-20/1 3-Pilot Discretion-Andrew McCarthy-Tony Alagna-10/1 4-Reign Of Honor-David Miller-R. Nifty Norman-20/1 5-Greenshoe-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-4/5 6-Don't Let'em-Yannick Gingras-Nancy Johansson-4/1 7-Super Schissel-Scott Zeron-Per Engblom-10/1 8-Marseille-Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt-5/1 by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA   

Wilkes-Barre, PA - Ake Svanstedt expected his colt Marseille to follow heavy harness racing favorite Greenshoe in Saturday's (June 29) $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, but his plan never came to fruition. Instead, Marseille led from start to finish in the event for 3-year-old trotters to spring a 55-1 upset at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Marseille won the Beal by a head over Greenshoe, the 1-9 favorite whose furious rally in the final sixteenth of a mile came up a stride short, in a time of 1:52.3 over a track labeled "good" to spark a $116 payout on a $2 win ticket. Green Manalishi S finished third. At the start of the race, Marseille and Swandre The Giant each left quickly from outside spots on the gate, posts seven and eight, respectively, with Marseille getting the lead in a :26.2 opening quarter-mile. Marseille led by 1-1/4 lengths over Swandre The Giant and 5-1/4 lengths over third-place Osterc at that point. Svanstedt rated a :30.3 second quarter with Marseille, during which Osterc launched a first-over bid, getting out ahead of Green Manalishi S, who was fourth, and Greenshoe, who was sixth. Osterc attempted to overtake Marseille in a :27.4 third quarter but was unable to draw even with the leader. Osterc went off stride in the final turn while Green Manalishi S was on the move three wide and Greenshoe eventually four wide as they headed toward the top of the stretch. Marseille trotted his final quarter in :27.4, which was just enough to hold off Greenshoe, who was more than five lengths back after the field turned for home. It was Greenshoe's first loss in four races this season. Greenshoe entered the Beal as the No.1-ranked horse in Meadowlands Racetrack announcer/analyst Ken Warkentin's Road to the Hambletonian. The $1 million Hambletonian is Aug. 3 at the Meadowlands. Marseille also is eligible to the Hambletonian. "My chance to be second in this race was to leave fast and maybe come behind Greenshoe," said Svanstedt, who also trains Marseille. "But he never came, so then it was just to go to the front." Marseille, a son of Muscle Hill-Order By Wish, has won two of four races this season and two of eight in his career. He has earned $317,758 for owners Ake Svanstedt Inc., Order By Stable, and Howard Taylor. The Earl Beal Jr. Memorial honors the former president of the Pennsylvania Harness Horsemen's Association, who was a driving force to bring casino gaming to the state's racetracks. by Ken Weingartner, USTA Media Relations Manager

WILKES-BARRE PA - The Sweet Lou - Keystone Dawn two-year-old pacing colt Keystone Dash set a North American season's harness racing record for his division as he dashed to a 1:54.2 victory in a morning baby qualifying race at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Keystone Dash went right to the lead and posted equal halves of :57.1 while in control to the wire. Keystone Dash's trainer and driver may surprise some - he is a member of the Ake Svanstedt stable, and Svanstedt handled driving chores in his record mile for Ake Svanstedt Inc. But superior horsemanship is gait-transferrable - as proven by a fellow native Swede who wore green, black, and white in his Hall of Fame career. The Charlie Norris stable sent out both winners in two-year-old trotting males action: the Muscle Massive - My Winning Way K colt Moveoutofmyway K, driven by Matt Kakaley to a 1:59.3 win, and the Cantab Hall - Tough Girl Lindy colt Tuff To Be Lindy, whom Norris guided to a 2:00.3 victory.   PHHA / Pocono

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