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Freehold, NJ--It's usually the driver who receives all the accolades after a victory, and rightly so, but when a harness racing trainer sends out two horses as individual participants in the same contest and they finish first and second in the race, it's an certainly an unusual accomplishment Case in point: the American Harness Drivers Club trot at Freehold Raceway today (Nov. 28) in which trainer Taylor Gower's two participants, Mugshot Jess and If I Must, finished first and second respectively in that $9,000 amateur trot Saturday. Pearly Allen was up behind the winner, Mugshot Jess, while Paul Minore handled the driving chores for the runner-up If I Must. And neither was the betting favorite in the race. That honor belonged to Can Do who was driven to third place finish by "Yankee Joe" Lee. When the starter released the field Minore sent If I Must to the lead and then relinquished control to Mugshot Jess who didn't take command until well after the quarter was trotted in :29.3. Sent off a fourth choice in the wagering Allen kept the pedal to the metal and Mugshot Jess got first call at the halfway point in :59.3 while keeping Always A Good Time and driver Joe Faraldo parked out in the fresh air. With Mugshot Jess still showing the way Allen seemed undeterred as is trotter began to trot away from his challengers as the timer three quarter-mile timer flashed 1:29.2. In front by two lengths as the field rounded the final turn and headed for home the lead was opened to 3-1/4 lengths at the finish.   Watching all the action in front of him Minore, who had a two-hole trip, kept after If I Must and although the veteran trotter didn't gain on the leader he did however shrug off Can Do to garner the place money in the 1:59.1 mile. Trainer Taylor Gower owns the winner, a 13-year-old altered son of Jailhouse Jesse. He paid $12.60 for win. by John Manzi, for the American Harness Drivers Club    

Freehold, NJ---The old adage 'when you're hot you're hot' could easily apply to driver John Calabrese after he scored his second consecutive driving victory in the $9000 American Harness Drivers Club series trot at Freehold Raceway on the sunny afternoon of November 21. Unlike last week when Calabrese used a pocket trip to score a 1:59.3 victory with Shoemaker Hanover today he put Ooh Rah on the engine and used the front-end route for a solid 1:58.1 triumph Having great credentials and starting from the three-hole, Ooh Rah took "all the money" when the attending crowd sent the trotter away at odds-of 1-5 ...and none of his backers was disappointed. When the starter released the field Calabrese sent Ooh Rah immediately to the lead from the three-hole and they had command when the quarter mile timer flashed :28.4. From there it was little more than a buggy ride for Calabrese as Ooh Rah passed the half-way point in :58.2 and they had no challenges up the backside and past the three quarters in 1:28.1. In the lane Ooh Rah was on cruise control all the way to the wire and scored an easy 1-1/2 length triumph over 53-1 shot Can Do, who was driven by Joe Lee. Third place went to 13-year-old Wygant Prince, driven by Paul Minore.   Ooh Rah is owned by Kathleen La Montagne and Donald La Montagne and trained by Kathleen La Montagne. He returned a paltry $2.40 for win. by John Manzi, for the American Harness Drivers Club

Freehold, NJ-- Last week in the American Harness Drivers Club trot at Freehold Raceway harness racing driver John Calabrese and Shoemaker Hanover had road trouble and finished off the board. However today, in this week's edition, Calabrese benefited from a perfect covered journey to rally to a 1:59.3 triumph over Drazzmatazz, the trotter that won this event last Saturday. A late scratch and only six horses behind the starting gate proved beneficial for Drazzmatazz after Tony Verruso hustled the veteran to the lead from post six. The :28.4 first panel forced the rest of the field to settle in behind the leader. Heading to the halfway point Dave Offenberg moved the betting favorite, Broadway Bruiser, off the pylons and charged alongside Drazzmatazz and they raced as a team by the half in :59.4 and they were still heads apart as they passed the third stanza in 1:30 before Broadway Bruiser began to tire.   That allowed Shoemaker Hanover who was traveling second along the pylons to have a clear shot at the leader and when they rumbled for home Calabrese's trotter was the strong horse and rallied to a solid one-length victory over Verruso's charge. Third money went to Exuberance who was driven by Paul Minore. Shoemaker Hanover, a 7 year old son of Cantab Hall is owned and trained by Tracy Tarantino. Sent off as second choice in the field he returned a $6.40 win mutuel. by John Manzi, for the AHDC  

Freehold, NJ -- Another $9,000 amateur harness racing trot in the American Harness Drivers Club is now in the books after "Coach Paul" Minore gunned If I Must to the lead from the five-hole and then proceeded to make every pole a winning one en route to 2-1/4 length victory in 2:00.4 over seven others at Freehold Raceway on Saturday afternoon (Oct 24). Mugshot Jess, driven by Pearly Allen, got all the early betting money and was sent away as the 1-2 favorite but road trouble from the six-hole never allowed him to contend until it was too late. After he grabbed the lead in a soft :30.2 first quarter Minore tapped the breaks and led Fji (Dave Offenberg) by the first stanza and they were one-two by the half in 1:01:2 while Mugshot Jess was stalled by breaking horses on the first turn. A lazy Tough Get Going (Joe Faraldo) who was in third place behind the leaders early, had trouble chasing the top two and in doing so it kept the trailers from a clear shot at the leaders. It was still If I Must and Fiji showing the way as the field rounded the final turn and in the lane the former opened daylight on the latter and coasted to an easy victory. Mugshot Jess finally shook free but too late to do any damage to the leaders and had to settle for third money.   If I Must, a 5-year-old altered son of Muscles Yankee, is owned by his driver and trained by Taylor Gower. He was sent off as third choice in the contest and returned a $14.70 win mutuel. Minore was the high school track and field coach for the great Carl Lewis. by John Manzi, for the AHDC

This year's Hambletonian Amateur races, a staple at the Meadowlands and part of the Hambo week of harness racing festivities, clearly demonstrated the growth and support this aspect of the game has achieved.

Joe Bongiorno overcame traffic troubles to sweep past the field of eight in the $4,000 American Harness Racing Drivers Club Fall Pacing Series Final Friday night at Meadowlands Racetrack.

Bedminster, New Jersey's John Regina and his own Hop Sing cruised to an easy ten and one quarter length victory in the fifth and final preliminary leg of the American Harness Racing Drivers Club's 2010 Fall Pacing Series on Friday November 19, 2010 at a blustery Freehold Raceway.

For Colts Neck, NJ's Barbara and Bob Bongiorno, this year has been a well-documented rollercoaster ride. As longtime standardbred owners, their charges have competed under the brightest lights and on the biggest stages that harness racing has to offer.

In a dazzling repeat performance, Colts Neck, New Jersey's Joe Bongiorno steered Oh Whata Guy to victory in the third leg of the American Harness Racing Drivers Club's 2010 Fall Pacing Series on Friday October 22 at Freehold Raceway.

For most high school students, leaving early from school usually involves a trip to the doctor, dentist or some other mundane adventure. However, when seventeen-year-old Joe Bongiorno left Colts Neck Regional High School in New Jersey for a few hours this afternoon for a harness racing meeting, his story may have raised more than a few eyebrows in the school's administrative office.

Manhattan, New York's Bob Hechkoff guided his own Fox Valley Michael to a wire-to-wire score for harness racing trainer Todd Marciano in the opening leg of the American Harness Drivers Club's 2010 Fall Pacing Series on Friday September 24 at a sun-splashed Freehold Raceway.

While it may have been belated for nearly a month, Lincoln Park, NJ's Miguel Lopez threw himself a quite a 71st Birthday celebration.

Tenafly, New Jersey's David Yarock, steering Benzorama A, easily overtook pacesetters Brad Rathbone and Do You Really to take home victory in the fifth and final preliminary leg of the American Harness Racing Driver's Clubs 2010 Spring Pacing Series on Friday April 30 at Freehold Raceway.

A field of pacers and harness racing amateur drivers took to the stage on Friday March19 as the American Harness Drivers Club returned to action at a spring-like Freehold Raceway with the second leg of the 2010 Spring Pacing Series. Warwick, New York's Eric Taddeo guided his own Admirals Chance to victory in a well-earned coast-to-coast victory, his first in competition with the AHDC.

In the latter part of January, the American Harness Drivers Clubs prospects of conducting future amateur harness racing events at Freehold Raceway were bleak at best.

Veteran amateur harness racing driver Bob Hechkoff steered his own Art's Regards to victory for trainer Jim Doherty, Jr. in the American Harness Drivers Club's $4,000 2010 Winter Pacing Final on Friday January 15 at The Meadowlands.

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