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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Preppy Art had been a harness racing machine of late, winning six in a row heading into the Toys For Tots Final for $7,500 claiming pacers at the Meadowlands Thursday night. It appears Forevernalways didn't read the press clippings. The 5-year-old Forevernalways, a gelded son of Always A Virgin-Jnb N Me, rushed up to challenge Preppy Art on the far turn before cruising by on the way to a 4¼-length win in a lifetime-best 1:51. It was apparent during the wagering that Preppy Art, who was making his sixth straight start in a different barn, would not be the post-time favorite, but as the 2-1 second choice, he fired away from the gate to the lead and cut out a :27.3 quarter before a :55.2 half.   Forevernalways vacated the three-hole approaching the far turn after Preppy Art hit three-quarters in 1:24 and made a bold move to poke a head in front with three-sixteenths of a mile to go. From there, the Kenneth Tisa trainee drew off with Dave Miller doing the driving during an explosive final quarter of :26.4 to win for fun. Walks Of Life was second, with Preppy Art third. Forevernalways, who paid $4.60 to win as the 6-5 favorite, was claimed for a third consecutive start, this time by Izzy Estrada. Preppy Art, who was claimed for a sixth consecutive outing, left the track on Bruce Lauer's trailer. There were two other Toys For Tots Finals on the program. JB's Shooting Star (Yannick Gingras driving) ran her win streak to three by taking the Fillies and Mares TrackMaster 77 or less Pace in 1:53 as the 4-5 public choice while Broadway Promise (Dave Miller) hit the wire first in 1:54.3 in the Non-Winners of $3,500 Pace at odds of 8-1. LARRY THE LIP: The always entertaining Larry Lederman called the Thursday night races, and as usual he provided some quips that are rarely heard: "Feel The Muscle is coming and so is Christmas." "This could be long-term parking, just like at the airport." "And the car leaves at 40 miles an hour, and there's R M Blackhawk going about 38." A LITTLE MORE: Dave Miller and Andy Miller were the driving stars of the night with three winners each while Andy McCarthy had two. Those three drivers accounted for eight of the 10 winners on the card. ... One player - wagering into the Midlantic hub - had the lone ticket to last all eight legs in the 20-cent Survivor Pick-8 and collected $6,183. ... Favorites won seven times on the program. ... All-source handle totaled $956,383. ... Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

MILTON, ON - December 12, 2019 - Winter Series harness racing action finally got underway Thursday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park with first round action in the Valedictory and Niagara Series. Each series featured two $17,000 divisions with three-year-old colt and gelding pacers dueling in the Valedictory and sophomore pacing fillies contesting the Niagara. The Valedictory Series launched with Windsun Ricky rallying from sixth at the head of the lane to reach up and defeat Lyons Pegasus, who led from the second-quarter on, by half a length in 1:51.4. What Up Mo was third, while Conboyville was fourth. Sent off as the even-money choice, Windsun Ricky was driven to victory by Sylvain Filion for trainer Murray Brethour. The gelded son of American Ideal now has five wins in 15 starts this season, with three of those victories coming in six starts since a break from the track in August and September. Windsun Ricky is now five for 20 in his career and has banked $69,080 for owners Brethour, Windsun Farm and Noblock Racing Stable. He paid $4.10 to win. To watch the race replay, click here. No rallying was needed in the second division, as Virgin Storm went coast-to-coast on the lead to win in 1:52.4. James MacDonald guided the Nick Surick trainee to his fourth win in 25 starts this season. Jknr Liketell rallied for second, beat a length. Dreamfair Charro was third, while Legion Seelster was fourth. Unraced at age two, Virgin Storm entered Thursday's race having not scored a victory since his fifth start of the season. The gelded son of Always A Virgin now displays totals of four wins, $57,555 earned and a mark of 1:52.4 for owner M Spacc Stables. Virgin Storm paid $11.30 to win. To watch the race replay, click here. The Niagara Series started with Sunfire Blue Chip filly Dreamfair Zenfire scoring at odds of 4-1 for driver Travis Cullen and trainer Jodie Cullen. Dreamfair Zenfire rushed up from third to claim the top at the half and went on to pace a :56.2 back-half to win by a length and a quarter in a career-best 1:53. Cranberry Brie took second, while Erikas Shadow and Mary Goodnight completed the Superfecta. The most experienced competitor in the Niagara, Dreamfair Zenfire is now six for 37 on the season after going winless in four starts as a rookie. She is a homebred for John Lamers that has now earned $64,131 during her racing career. Dreamfair Zenfire paid $11.40 to win. To watch the race replay, click here. Arya Stark closed out Thursday's series action in exciting fashion, winning by a neck over Giggle Hanover in 1:53.4. Driven by Chris Christoforou, Arya Stark angled out from fourth heading to three-quarters, collecting cover from a two-hole pulling Passport Hanover. Trip Aces Hanover, who led into the stretch, surrendered the lead late to Arya Stark, while Giggle Hanover charged up the rail late. Passport Hanover was fourth. A daughter of Royal Mattjesty, Arya Stark picked up her fifth win 34 starts this season and sixth career win overall with the upset score. Melissa Lamoureux trains the sophomore and co-owns with Jeffrey Boyd and Jefferson Davis. Arya Stark, who paid $23.80, now has career earnings of $68,537. To watch the race replay, click here. The Valedictory and Niagara Series were open to three-year-olds, who were non-winners of $60,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2019. Each event will resume next Thursday (December 19) with second-round action. The series finals will be contested on Boxing Day (December 26). Live racing continues Friday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Post time is 7:10 p.m. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Entertainment  

Always A Prince and driver Yannick Gingras stole the show in the $350,000 TVG Open Pace Final Saturday at the Meadowlands. Starting from post eight, Yannick sent the four-year-old gelding by Always A Virgin right to the front and never looked back. The duo held the field at bay and then pulled away in the stretch for a 1:48.2 triumph. He is trained by Tyler George and is owned by Carl and Melanie Atley of Xenia, Ohio. He paid $12.00 to win. Bettor's Wish was second with American History third. "It was the first time I ever drove him was tonight," said Yannick Gingras. "He was really nice to drive." by Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink  

DAYTON, OH. - Tookadiveoffdipper, the ultra-consistent 5-year-old son of Always A Virgin, copped the $17,500 Open Pace at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Saturday (Nov. 2) for his seventh harness racing win of the season. The Virgil Morgan Jr. trainee surpassed the $100,000 seasonal earnings plateau with the victory. In 2018, the winner also triumphed on seven occasions and banked $99,360. Driver Brett Miller opted to take control early, speeding to the quarter pole in :26.4 with the public's second betting choice. Tookadiveoffdipper also fronted the field at the half in :55.1 and the three-quarters station in 1:22.4 before sealing the deal in 1:50.4.   Pocket sitter Granite (Jeremy Smith), the slight race favorite, tried gallantly to overtake the leader in the stretch but fell one length short. Former multiple Ohio Horse Of The Year honoree Dancin Yankee (Chris Page), got loose late in the fray and closed for the show dough. The 11-year-old son of Yankee Cruiser, presently seeking his 80th victory, needs just $4,600 to reach $2 million in career earnings.   Tookadiveoffdipper is owned by Jane Cross of Illinois and Mark Cross of Tennessee.   The feature race win was one of four on the first dozen races for leading driver Brett Miller. A race later he guided Rock Out to a 1:50.2 tally in a $20,000 claimer for trainer Morgan Jr. Earlier on the program, Miller won a $15,000 claimer with Rush To Judgement, also from the Morgan Jr. barn; and lit up the toteboard with upset winner Omega Cat ($85.40) for trainer Steve Brannan in a top level condition pace.   Omega Cat's mega payoff in the seventh race caused a $2006 carryover in the track's 20-cent Hi-5 wager which prompted a $5000 guaranteed Hi-5 pool when racing resumes at Hollywood Dayton on Monday afternoon.   From Hollywood Dayton Raceway    

ANDERSON, Ind.--September 19, 2019-- Fresh off a big night of Grand Circuit harness racing action, two divisions of Indiana Sires Stakes for three-year-old pacing fillies were the featured attraction at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, September 21. The sophomore pacing fillies have now completed seven rounds of their eight round series. The Indiana Sires Stakes season will culminate with the $250,000 Super Finals for each division on October 11. In the opening division, Play For Pay and driver Brandon Bates switched up their tactics and opted for a trip off the pace and came charging late in the lane to score in 1:51.1. Dojea Rita and Charlie Conrad were the first to get a call through the opening panel in :27.1 before yielding the lead to Lady Capulet and Michael Oosting just before the half. Lady Capulet clicked off fractions of :55.2 and 1:23.2 and when the field turned for home, it was a cavalry charge to the wire. Using the long Hoosier Park stretch to her advantage, Play For Pay tipped off tiring cover and used a :26.3 closing kick to get the win by a head. Pure Maid and LeWayne Miller finished second while This Peach Rocks and Ross Leonard rounded out the trifecta. Sent off at odds of 5-1, Play For Pay returned $13.60 at the betting windows. Trained by Michael Arnold, Play For Pay recorded her fourth win from 15 starts this season. The daughter of Tellitlikeitis-Fox Valley Ivy now sports a lifetime bankroll of $162,335 and is owned by Ira Steinberg. Fully A Virgin and Michael Oosting used similar tactics to get up in the final strides of the mile and capture the second division of the stakes action in 1:50.1. Utilizing a :25.4 closing quarter, Fully A Virgin tipped off cover and powered home a winner to stick a nose in front of stablemate Pansy's Image and Trace Tetrick. Rockin Nola and Joey Putnam also rallied well late to finish third. The 1:50.1 clocking was a new lifetime best for the Shane Bowermaster trainee and the third win from her last four outs. With the win, the homebred daughter of Always A Virgin-Full Of Gold recorded her sixth win from 14 starts this season. Owned and bred by Emerald Highlands Farm, Fully A Virgin has now amassed $205,180 in lifetime purse earnings. Live racing action will continue at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, September 24 with an 11-race card. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing at Harrah's Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 9. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.harrahshoosierpark.com. by Emily Ratcliff, for Harrah's Hoosier Park  

ANDERSON, Ind.-September 13, 2019- Sophomore harness racing pacing colts & geldings were back in the spotlight and as predicted, turned in ultra-competitive stakes performances on Friday, September 13 at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. The evening featured two $49,000 divisions in leg seven of eight Indiana Sire Stakes legs for the division as the horses prepare for the upcoming Stakes Super Finals next month. Each division produced slight upsets with victories from Shamwow and Tellmeaboutit. In division one, Shamwow turned in a gritty performance to get the victory over rival Rockie Got Framed. After finishing second to Rockie Got Framed in his last two starts, Shamwow was able to turn the tables and stop the timer in 1:50, just a tick off his lifetime best, for trainer Melissa Essig. When the wings of the gate opened, Rockie Got Framed with Ricky Macomber Jr. quickly grabbed the lead, as they were looking their third consecutive stakes win. Alwaysasweetvictory with Todd Warren settled in second while Shamwow with LeWayne Miller waited patiently in third, poised to attack through the opening quarter in :27:0. At the half in :55:3, Miller guided Shamwow to the outside and urged him to the front to grab the lead from Rockie Got Framed who was content to sit in the pocket. Ima Real Ladys Man with Michael Oosting began pressuring the leader at the third quarter in 1:23:4 and was able to stick a nose in front as the field turned for home. The top trio matched strides in the stretch and it appeared to be anyone's race. Using a :26.1 final quarter, Shamwow fought back gamely to stick a nose in front and reach the wire first, followed by Rockie Got Framed in second and Shamwow in third. Shamwow paid $5.20 to win at the betting windows. "I knew I wanted to be forwardly placed," driver LeWayne Miller noted in the winner's circle. "We've been trying to teach him how to race and that was a big mile tonight by him. He raced really strong." Shamwow, the son of Always A Virgin-Bolero, has won five of eight lifietime starts and has yet to finish worse than second in his young career. Unraced as a two-year-old, Shamwow now sports a lifetime bankroll of $96,875 for owner, breeder Cornerstone Stock Farm. Not to be outdone, division two was the fastest division of the night as Tellmeaboutit with Michael Oosting found the winner's circle after a sizzling 1:48:4 effort. The 1:48.4 time was a new lifetime best for sophomore colt and just one-fifth of a second off of the current track record for three-year-old pacing geldings. Pure Rock with Rick Plano used their customary front-running tactics to grab the lead from the coveted post five. Jagger Rocks with Sam Widger followed in second while Tellmeabout waited patiently in third. The field remained in straight formation through an opening split of :25:4, but just before the half Jagger Rocks was given the green light and grabbed the front position at the half in a snappy :53:2. Tellmeaboutit began his attack on the leader when Oosting moved him second-over and he was able to take the lead just before the third quarter in 1:21:4. Tellmeaboutit used the long quarter-mile stretch to bolster his lead on the field, and ultimately crossed the wire three lengths to the good. Tellmeaboutit                                                                 --Linscott photography Little Rocket Man with Trace Tetrick rallied from well back for second while Ollie's Ztam with Ricky Macomber Jr. dug in for third. Tellmeaboutit paid $8.20 to win for his betting backers. "I've always known he's a nice colt," trainer Alvin Miller revealed after the victory. "We're just trying to keep everything together. He's got a little bit of an ornery streak in him. I always knew he could go that fast, just wasn't sure how far." Tellmeaboutit is the son of Tellitlikeitis-Portia Blue Chip and has now won nine of 23 lifetime starts. Bred by Lavon Miller, he now boasts a lifetime bankroll of $186,930 for owners Twila Harts and Alvin Miller. Live racing action will continue at Harrah's Hoosier Park on Saturday, September 14. The evening's live racing card will feature both a $20,000 Open Pace and a $20,000 Open Trot. Indiana Sires Stakes action will return to Harrah's Hoosier Park on Tuesday, September 17 with a 12-race card featuring two divisions for the two-year-old trotting colts & geldings. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing at Harrah's Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 9. For more information on the upcoming entertainment or live racing schedule, please visit www.harrahshoosierpark.com. by Rose Flood, for Harrah's Hoosier Park

ANDERSON, Ind.-August 17, 2019- It was a winning night for trainer Shane Bowermaster on Saturday, August 17 at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino as fillies from his harness racing stable swept both $49,000 divisions of the fifth leg of Indiana Sires Stakes action for three-year-old pacing fillies. With wins from Fully A Virgin and Pansy's Image, both fillies provided upsets over the heavy favorites in their respective divisions. The first upset came when Fully A Virgin and Michael Oosting surged past the field to cross the wire first and pay $16.00 to win. Stopping the time in 1:50.2, the sophomore filly used a valiant stretch rally to get up in the final strides of the mile and established a new lifetime mark with the win. Leaving from post eight in the talented field of nine, Fully A Virgin was unhurried from the gate and found a spot along the rail in eighth. The heavy favorite Rockin Nola with Joey Putnam and Tellitsassymae with Sam Widger battled for the early lead. When the field reached the first quarter in :26:3, Tellitsassymae claimed the front with Rockin Nola following closely from the pocket. The field continued in straight formation through the half in :54:4 before Rockin Nola was on the attack, first-over. Tellitsassymae and Rockin Nola were matching strides past the third quarter in 1:22:3 and when the field turned for home, the race appeared to be wide open. Oosting had Fully A Virgin well placed second over and when he tipped her to the outside, she dug in gamely and surged past her competitors to get the win by two lengths. She was followed by another Shane Bowermaster trainee, Glorious Virgin and Trace Tetirck, who utilized a ground-saving trip for second while This Peach Rocks with Ross Leonard got up for third. "She's been easy to handle since day one," Bowermaster noted in the winner's circle. "She's really easy on herself. It helps that she's filled out since last year-she's built like a tank. We took a headpole off tonight which seemed to help, that and having them out in the field last week-it really freshened her up." Fully A Virgin, the daughter of Always A Virgin-Full Of Gold, has now won seven of 23 lifetime starts and brought her lifetime bankroll to $168,555. Fully A Virgin is owned by the Emerald Highlands Farms, who also bred her. Bowermaster's second win of the night came when Pansy's Image and Sam Widger utilized a pocket trip to pull the 8-1 upset in the second division of stakes action. Following the trend from her stablemate earlier in the night, Pansy's Image also established a new lifetime mark with tonight's win, stopping the clock in 1:51:2. When the wings of the gate opened the post-time favorite Play For Pay with Brandon Bates grabbed the early lead but Widger also had Pansy's Image forwardly placed from post seven. At the first quarter in :26:1, Pansy's Image had reached the front but relinquished the lead to Play For Pay just before the half in :55. At the third quarter in 1:23:4, Queen Lagertha with John De Long moved first-over into second and began to engage Play For Pay for the lead. With the wire in sight, the top three were matching strides and pacing hard to the wire. Pansy's Image found late racing room up the inside and utilized a :27.1 final panel to get the win, crossing the wire three lengths to the good. Play For Pay held on for second and Queen Lagertha fought for third. Pansy's Image paid $19.20 to win. "She's really easy on herself too," Bowermaster revealed after the win. "I didn't really tell Sam what to do, but I knew if she was covered up she'd still be right there. I think fresher is better with these fillies, so we're planning on giving them a week off between stakes legs and make sure they are ready to go for these last few legs of the sires stakes." Pansy's Image is also owned and was bred by the Emerald Highlands Farms and has won five of 20 lifetime starts. She now sports a lifetime bankroll of $119,680, surpassing the $100,000 mark with tonight's victory. Indiana Sires Stakes action will continue at Harrah's Hoosier Park on Tuesday, August 21 with an 11-race card featuring two divisions for the two-year-old trotting fillies. Tuesday's card will also feature a $10,000 guaranteed Hoosier High 5 in race 11. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing at Harrah's Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 9. For more information on the upcoming entertainment or live racing schedule, please visit www.harrahshoosierpark.com. by Rose Flood, for Harrah's Hoosier Park

YONKERS, NY, Friday, February 22, 2019-Tepid choice Itty Bitty (Jim Marohn Jr., $7.10) picked off a tiring harness racing leader Friday night (Feb. 22nd), winning Yonkers Raceway's $44,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. Unhurried from post position No. 3, Itty Bitty saw a wide-early Monica Gallagher (Matt Kakaley) have to work to get around Ideal Lifestyle A (a returning Mark MacDonald). 'Monica' paid a :26.4 opening-quarter-mile price for the privilege, only to have Ideal Lifestyle A pull pocket by the :55.3 intermission. That lass began to open up down the backside, widening through a 1:23.4 three-quarters and taking a 3½-length lead into the lane. However, the hooves were getting heavy and Itty Bitty-who had gone three-deep around a dullard-found herself within range. Itty Bitty rolled past Ideal Lifestyle A late, winning by a half-length in a season's-best 1:53.4. A last-at-the-outset Betterb Chevron N (Jordan Stratton) did get the bottom of the ticket, with 79-1 outsider Shezza GNP N (Austin Siegelman) and Monica Gallagher settling for the minors. For Itty Bitty, a 5-year-old daughter of Always a Virgin co-owned (as Allard Racing) by (trainer) Rene Allard, B & I Stables and Stephen Klunowski, it was her second win in seven seasonal starts. The exacta paid $29, the triple returned $224 and the superfecta paid $4,332. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

Harness racing stallion breedings to Kadabra, Always A Virgin, Andover Hall, Racing Hill, Muscles Yankee and Conway Hall are among the 75+ offered in New Vocations Stallion Auction that also includes the recent additions of All Bets Off and Boston Red Rocks along with four Michigan stallions. The auction is currently in progress at https://ongait.com/s/newvocationsauction and will end at 2:00 pm Thursday Feb 7. The auction is held in an open-ended-format that allows for bidding up to two minutes after the last bid on breedings with high activity at the 2:00 pm cut off. All proceeds go to rehab, retrain, and rehome Standardbreds retiring from the track. For more information call (937) 947-4020 or email dot@horseadoption.com by Dot Morgan, for New Vocations          

YONKERS, N.Y. – When harness racing trainer Erv Miller went to the Tattersalls July Sale with owner John Koliopoulos, they didn’t intend to come home with Air Strike. The 4-year-old Always A Virgin son impressed at 2, winning a $75,000 Indiana bred stakes at Hoosier Park and dead-heating in the $147,200 Kindergarten Classic at the Meadowlands. But with unimpressive resumes at 3 and 4, Air Strike didn’t even make Miller’s short list. However, as Miller stood around the sales ring watching horse after horse sell for more than he could stomach, he noticed Air Strike in the ring. Bidding maxed out at $26,000, a price the trainer couldn’t refuse.  “All the ones I looked at were bringing too much money,” Miller said. “I knew the horse a little bit from racing in Indiana, so I knew he was a high-ability kind of horse. I knew he must have some kind of problem because he hadn’t shown much at that time, but for $26,000, I thought I could put him in a claimer at Yonkers, so I just took a shot. “Most of the horses I was trying to buy that day I was trying to look at ahead of time and get a feel for what I was buying, but I didn’t look at that horse,” he continued. “We were very fortunate to find him the way we did, to come across him like that because he wasn’t the horse I went there to buy, but if the price is right, you do that sometimes.” Despite their unlikely pairing, Miller was immediately impressed with Air Strike. He won his debut for his new connections in an $11,000 overnight at Pocono July 24 and followed it up with a victory at Yonkers for $17,500 the next week. Air Strike went wire-to-wire in the $35,000 4-year-old open handicap pace August 18, but was unable to duplicate his success at that level in his next four tries. Miller regrouped and sent Air Strike to Hoosier Park. “When we bought him, at first he seemed like he was OK because he was down in class and then he got to where he didn’t race as good because he was up in class,” Miller said. “I sent him out to Indiana and the last start in Indiana he just started coming back around. We brought him back and he fit the low class again, and that’s how started back there.” Air Strike finished off-the-board in his three Indiana starts, but won two straight races at Pocono in October while down in class. Then the light-bulb went off. “He’s a really nice, big, strong horse. A good sound horse, too. He had a splint bothering him, so we worked on that some and got him a little sounder. Ever since we did that, he just keeps getting better every time we race him.” Air Strike returned to the 4-year-old open November 3 and after setting a :26.3 opening panel, went on to record a 7 ¾-length romp in 1:52.1.  “That’s about when he turned around,” Miller commented. “We’d worked on that splint a little before that and he just got a little sounder and everything went good for him. He’s always good on the front.”  Air Strike finished second to Mac’s Jackpot in his next start when handicapped by post seven, but recorded a 7-length score when he started from post five November 24. He was fifth from the outside December 1, but last time out racked up another win in the class from post five. He’s won 12 races this year and earned $139,825, pushing his career tally to $285,815. His success on the small track surprised his trainer. “I think he likes the smaller track now, now that he’s grown up,” Miller said. “It did (surprise) me a little bit because I watched his replays after I bought him that day and thought, ‘man, he doesn’t get around Yonkers very good. He struggles a little.’ I was a little surprised. I think it was just a maturity thing.” With the impending changing of the calendar, Yonkers’ 2018 racing season is coming to a close. This Saturday (December 15), Air Strike will get his final chance to compete in the $35,000 4-year-old open. He will start from post seven as the 5-2 morning line favorite, but unlike his prior outside efforts, rival Mac’s Jackpot isn’t drawn inside of him. Instead, Air Strike will contend with Rock N Blue, Treasure Mach, Aston Hill Dave, Machiavelli, Odds On Delray, and McSpidey. “It’s a good class to be in. It’s too bad it’s about to go away from him because he really does fit that class well,” Miller said. “It’s a little tougher when he’s got the outside like he does this week, but hopefully he’ll be OK. He’s better than he was and I think he’ll just keep getting better. A lot of people say it takes a certain kind of horse to compete at Yonkers and right now it looks like he might be that certain kind of horse. “Hopefully next year he can go to the Levy and just get better and better,” he continued. “We’re going to give him a little break here and point him toward that race. I think it just depends on how he comes out of it, but he’s made a lot of progress so far, so if he keeps making a lot of progress, I know there’s some good horses in there, but the way he’s gone so far, he really likes Yonkers and hopefully that’s what he’ll step up to.” Saturday night’s card also features a $44,000 Open Handicap Pace. First post time is 6:50 p.m. For entries to the races, click here.  By Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

If Carol's Z Tam's performance at Dayton three weeks ago was something of an audition, her appearance in Saturday's (Oct. 20) Breeders Crown eliminations for older female pacers at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono could be considered her callback. Now she will look to land a spot in the big show. Carol's Z Tam, trained by Jamie Macomber for owner Bill Matz's Z Tam Stables, competes in the first of two $25,000 Breeders Crown eliminations for the pacing mares at Pocono. Brian Sears, who leads all active drivers in Breeders Crown wins with 27, will be in the sulky. Sears also was in the bike on Sept. 28 when Carol's Z Tam won the open handicap for fillies and mares at Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway. Dayton, like Pocono, is a five-eighths-mile track. It was only the second time Carol's Z Tam raced on a track smaller than seven-eighths in her 58-race career. "I took her to Dayton and she seemed to like it; she had some confidence over there and Brian got along with her over there," Macomber said. "She's been training sharp the last month. I think this is her favorite time of year because this is when she got sharp last year too. That also helped make the decision (to enter the Breeders Crown)." Four-year-old Carol's Z Tam, by Always A Virgin out of Electric Sparkle, has won 15 races in her career and earned $362,994. She was an Indiana Sire Stakes champion last year and also competed in the Breeders Crown, which was held at Macomber's home track, Hoosier Park. Carol's Z Tam, whose family includes Breeders Crown champ Lis Mara, finished fourth in her elimination and fifth in the final. Five-year-old Pure Country is the defending Breeders Crown Mare Pace champion and will try to become the first repeat winner since Shelliscape in 2013 and 2014. She also would join Jenna's Beach Boy, Eternal Camnation, and My Little Dragon as the only pacers to ever win three Crowns. Pure Country's other previous trophy came at age 2. Pure Country is also in the first elimination, as is the event's other previous Breeders Crown champion, 5-year-old Call Me Queen Be. She won her title in 2016 at the age of 3. Carol's Z Tam's best win time this year, 1:49 at Hoosier Park, is among the fastest of the season among pacing mares. Only Shartin N and Caviart Ally, who are both in the second Breeders Crown elimination, have been faster. "Hopefully we're going to get a good trip and have some pace on the end of it, which is what my mare likes to do," Macomber said. "She likes to come home that last sixteenth of a mile, eighth of a mile." Shartin N, a 5-year-old who is the richest female pacer this season, has won 16 of 21 races this year and earned $820,861. She was a $31,250 supplemental entry. The top-four finishers from each elimination plus the fifth-place finisher with highest seasonal earnings return Saturday (Oct. 27) for the $250,000 final. Elimination winners, in an order determined by lot, draw for posts one through five. Macomber, who shared the training title at Hoosier Park last year with Jeff Cullipher and trails Cullipher by three victories this season, won a Breeders Crown last year with pacer Beckhams Z Tam. The now 4-year-old stallion won this year's Prix d'Ete, which is restricted to 4-year-olds, but will sit out this year's Breeders Crown. "That's such a huge jump from (age) 3 to 4," Macomber said. "It's difficult going up against McWicked (the year's richest Standardbred with $1.17 million) and all those top older horses. We're looking for him to come back bigger and better as a 5-year-old." Racing begins at 7 p.m. (EDT) Saturday at Pocono and features a card made up entirely of Breeders Crown eliminations for 3-year-olds and older horses. For the night's complete entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA 

Seventimesavirgin (Always A Virgin) made her local harness racing debut on Friday night while competing in the Fillies and Mares Open at Saratoga Casino Hotel. A superstar in her "younger" years, Seventimesavirgin earned just shy of a half million dollars in her two and three year old campaigns. The five year old mare came to the Spa for the first time on Friday to compete in the evening's $16,000 feature for trainer Jimmy Nickerson. Billy Dobson got the driving assignment and the meet's leading driver sat patiently in last with the mare who was backed by the bettors to the tune of odds of 1-5 in the five-horse feature. After the first half was paced in 56.2, Seventimesavirgin began to move from last, flushing out the cover of Spreester (Frank Coppola Jr). Spreester moved first over and powered past the leader, grinding that one into submission at the head at the stretch. Seventimesavirgin tipped off her cover in the stretch and got up in time to edge Spreester for the win, a victory that came in 1:53.3. Spreester was the runner-up in the Open for the second consecutive Friday night while last week's winner Happy Heart (Mark Beckwith) came on to earn the show spot. For Seventimesavirgin, it was victory number five on the season and an incredible 28thin 59 lifetime starts. Live racing continues at Saratoga on Saturday night with a first post time of 6:45pm. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway  

ANDERSON, IN --September 14, 2018--Indiana's top three-year-old pacing colts were the featured attraction at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino as they squared off the final round of preliminary stakes action on Friday, September 14. After sitting out of the eliminations last week, divisional leader Always A Prince returned to the track in a big kind of way in an $18,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Eligible event. With regular pilot Trace Tetrick in the bike, Always A Prince powered home a winner in 1:48.3 to score his third consecutive victory and lower his own track record in the process. Always A Prince established the previous mark of 1:48.4 in Indiana Sires Stakes action earlier this season. The track record performance served as a prep race for his next start as Always A Prince is expected to be supplemented to take on Grand Circuit company in the $175,000 Jenna's Beach Boy Pace. The Jenna's Beach Boy Pace will be part of the star-studded card slated for Friday, September 21 at Hoosier Park that will also feature the $200,000 Caesars Trotting Classic, the $175,000 est. Hoosier Park Pacing Derby, and the $125,000 Elevation Pace. Tetrick took no chances and sent the overwhelming favorite to the front just after the first quarter in :26.1. Always A Prince strolled through fractions of :53.3 and 1:21.1 before he began to put his talent on display. With a six length lead at the top of the stretch, Always A Prince was in a race against the clock and used a:27.2 final panel to coast on to the wire under a hand drive from Tetrick. "We entered him in a race last week and it didn't fill so we missed the sires stakes eliminations," trainer Tyler George said after the victory. "The Jenna's Beach Boy fits well with his schedule and it ended up working out for us to get a race this week so we are looking at supplementing. He deserves a shot." With the victory, Always A Prince has now won 14 of 17 lifetime outings and has only finished out of the money twice in his career. Unraced as a two-year-old, the gelded son of Always A Virgin-Glorious Princess pushed his lifetime bankroll to $196,500 for owners Carl & Melanie Atley. The victory was also one of six victories on the program for Hoosier Park's leading driver Trace Tetrick. Tetrick found the winner's circle just a few races later in the featured event of the evening, the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings, behind the 8-1 upset winner, On Duty. Uninvolved in the early stages of the race, On Duty utilized a :26.4 final panel to surge past his rivals late in the lane to secure the win in a new lifetime best of 1:49. Trained by William Crone, the gelded son of Rockin Image-Lady Luck Killean recorded his second win of the season from 12 outings. With the win, On Duty pushed his lifetime purse earnings over the $100,000 mark for owner John Barnard. Indiana Sires Stakes action continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, September 15 with the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 10. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park

ANDERSON, IN -September 12, 2018-Indiana Sires Stakes action continued at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Wednesday, September 12 as two $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals highlighted the evening's 14-race card. They used two different routes to get it done but the post time favorites each found their way to the winner's circle to continue their divisional dominance in the co-featured events. Divisional leader Custom Cantab and driver Peter Wrenn set the early tone and delivered as the even money favorite in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for three-year-old trotting fillies. After a record win in her elimination last week, Custom Cantab converted a pocket trip into a 1:54 score this week. Leaving from post three, Wrenn sent Custom Cantab away from the gate firing to grab the early lead through the opening panel in :27.1 before yielding to O So Easy and James Yoder just before the half. O So Easy led the field through fractions of :55.3 and 1:25.2 while Custom Cantab waited patiently in the pocket. Wrenn tipped Custom Cantab and she used a :28.2 final panel to surge past O So Easy while holding off a hard-charging Red Rose Swan and LeWayne Miller. Meadowbrook Grace and Trace Tetrick staged a big rally late in the lane but were forced to settle for third place honors. Custom Cantab returned $4.20 to her backers at the betting windows. The Chris Beaver trainee made a clean sweep of the fifth and final round of the stakes action to record her second consecutive Hoosier Park victory and ninth seasonal win from 11 outings. The daughter of Mr Cantab-Custom Model has now bankrolled $412,036 in lifetime purse earnings for owners Christopher Beaver, Donald E. Robinson, and RBH Ventures Inc. Custom Cantab will be pointed next to the $150,000 Moni Maker Stakes for three-year-old filly trotters at Hoosier Park slated for September 21. In the two-year-old pacing filly ranks, Glorious Virgin and Trace Tetrick continued their winning ways to capture the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old pacing fillies. With a final time of 1:51.4, Glorious Virgin came charging late to get the win by a neck and with it, record her sixth consecutive Hoosier Park victory. John DeLong had Lady Capulet pointed to the front from post four and she would grab command through the opening panel in :26.3. Sam Widger had Tellitsassymae on a mission to the front and she would call the shots through the middle fractions of :55.2 and 1:24. Tetrick gave Glorious Virgin the green light approaching the final turn and the filly ranged up and was quickly matching strides with the leader turning for home. Glorious Virgin reached the lead and was able to hold-off a late surge from her pocket-sitting, stablemate Lady Capulet who rallied well for second. Pure Maid and Ricky Macomber Jr. also rallied well late and utilized a second-over trip to round out the trifecta. As the heavy betting favorite, Glorious Virgin returned $3.20 to her backers at the betting windows. Trained by Shane Bowermaster, the homebred daughter of Always A Virgin-Bound For Glory has now won seven of eight lifetime starts while pushing her lifetime bankroll to $161,500 for Bruce Trogdon's Emerald Highlands Farm. Emerald Highland's contingent of fillies took home the lion's share of the $75,000 purse as they finished first, second, third and fifth in the field of ten. Indiana Sires Stakes action will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, September 13 with the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings. The evening's 14-race card will also feature a $10,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 in races 3-6. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park  

ANDERSON, ID  - August 24, 2018- After being sent off as the 1/5 post-time favorite, Always A Prince, with Trace Tetrick in the bike, continued his divisional dominance in the three-year-old pacing colt ranks, winning with authority in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Friday, August 24 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino. With the win, Always A Prince scored his second consecutive victory and made a clean sweep of the fourth round of stakes action. Tetrick wasted no time and sent Always A Prince right to the front from post three and easily grabbed the lead. With the first quarter in 26:2 and the half and 53:2, Michael Oosting and Too Hot To Stop took the pocket seat while the rest of the field waited to take aim at the leader. Once the pacers hit the third quarter with Always A Prince still leading in 1:20:4, the Ron Burke trainee GD Western Joe and driver John DeLong were the first to commit to the outer flow and were on the attack first-over. As the field turned for home, the top pair was battling it out but Always A Prince ultimately prevailed, gliding across the wire in 1:49:1. GD Western Joe held on gamely for second while Rockin Speed with LeWayne Miller closed hard for third. Always A Prince paid $2.40 to win for his backers at the betting windows. "He's better off of the front but I just let Trace do his thing," trainer Tyler George noted after the victory. "The horse has great mannerisms and he's all business. We plan to keep him here for the rest of the stakes season and maybe look at a few of the Grand Circuit races at the end of the year." With the victory, Always A Prince brought his lifetime purse earnings to $187,500 for owners Carl L. and Melanie D. Atley. Unraced as a two-year-old, the son of Always A Virgin-Glorious Princess has now won 13 of his 16 lifetime starts. The victory was also one of five winners on the evening's 13-race card for Hoosier Park's leading driver Trace Tetrick and one of two winners for trainer Tyler George. Indiana Sires Stakes action will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, August 25 with the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for the two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. Freshman trotting colt superstar Swandre The Giant will look to score his seventh consecutive victory and remain undefeated this season from post five for trainer, driver Brandon Bates. The evening's 12-race card will also feature two Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for the three-year-old pacing fillies and a $21,000 Fillies and Mares Invitational Pace. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Rose Flood, for Hoosier Park

ANDERSON, IN --August 22, 2018-- Glorious Virgin, with Trace Tetrick at the lines, became Hoosier Park Racing & Casino's newest track record holder when she powered home a winner in the third round of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for two-year-old pacing fillies on Wednesday, August 22. With a final time of 1:50.4, Glorious Virgin re-established the track record for two-year-old pacing fillies and also added a national season's record to her already impressive resume. The previous track record of 1:51 was established by Youaremycandygirl in an elimination of the Breeders Crown last fall. The 1:50.4 victory also equaled the fastest mile recorded by a two-year-old this season, regardless of track size or sex. Leaving from post five in a talented field of ten, Glorious Virgin was unhurried from the gate while stablemates Pansy's Image and Pure Maid were hustled out early for position. Pure Maid and Ricky Macomber Jr. reached the first quarter in :26.2 but would quickly yield the lead to the heavy post time favorite, Glorious Virgin, just before the half. Glorious Virgin clicked off fractions of :55.2 and 1:23.4 and looked strong on the front with a two-length lead. As the field rounded the final turn John DeLong had Lady Capulet applying pressure first-over but Glorious Virgin wasn't finished. Utilizing a:27 final panel, the Shane Bowermaster trainee kicked home and coasted on to the wire under a hand drive, finishing two lengths to the good. Fillies from the Bowermaster Stable completed the superfecta in the field as Pure Maid finished second, Lady Capulet was third and Fully A Virgin and Peter Wrenn rallied well for fourth place honors. As the 1-5 favorite, Glorious Virgin returned $2.40 at the betting windows. "I really think she could be one of the top three fillies I've ever sat behind," Tetrick noted after the victory. "At this stage in the game, she's better than any filly I've driven. She's a true professional, getting handier with every start and just has unbelievable talent." With the win, Glorious Virgin made a clean sweep of the third round of the stakes action for freshmen fillies and extended her win streak to four in the process. The homebred daughter of Always A Virgin-Bound For Glory has now won five of six lifetime starts while pushing her lifetime bankroll to $114,000 for Bruce Trogdon's Emerald Highlands Farm. Three-year-old trotting fillies were also featured in stakes action on the evening's 13-race card and it was Black Mamba As and Todd Warren who pulled the 16-1 upset in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final. Taking advantage of hot, early fractions, Black Mamba As used a well-timed rally late in the lane to score in a new lifetime best of 1:53. Black Mamba As recorded the third win of the season from ten seasonal starts for trainer Anette Lorentzon and snapped a five-race win streak for the heavily favored Custom Cantab who had to settle for second place honors. The homebred daughter of Lionhunter-Happy Year is owned by Acl Stuteri and has now amassed $138,900 in lifetime purse earnings. Indiana Sires Stakes action continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, August 23 with the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings. The evening's 14-race card will also feature a $10,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 in races 3-6. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park

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