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Monticello, NY - On Wednesday afternoon October 16, harness racing driver Jim Taggart Jr won 4 races on a soggy afternoon at the famed Catskill Mountains oval. Taggart wasted no time in getting on the board as he scored a 2 length victory in the first race with Needles And Pins in 1:57.3 ($2.90) for trainer Anthony Regina, giving the aged mare by Village Jove her 7th win of the year. Next up in race 6 was Coco Hall in 2:01.1 ($3.50) owned by Brenda Messenger and Scott Woogen for trainer Gary Messenger, the 5-year-old Amigo Hall mare has won 4 of her last 6 outings. Keystone Honor gave Taggart his 3rd win, the Dennis Laterza trained son of Bettors Delight won by 5 lengths in 1:57.2 and returned $10.60. In the last race is was Angelic Speed in 2:04.1 ($2.20) the win gave Gary Messenger a training double on the card. The four wins on the card helped Taggart boost his seasonal win tally to 198 wins for the year, gaining ground on leading dash winner Michael Merton with 207. by Shawn Wiles, for Monticello Raceway  

Trois-Rivieres, QC - Jamigo headlines the sixth race Preferred Trot at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday as the son of Amigo Hall goes for his third straight harness racing victory. Last year Jamigo won seven times and with three live race programs left at H3R, he currently has five wins and a good chance at either tying or beating last year's seven wins. The past two starts have been big wins for Jamigo and owner/trainer Manon Lamothe. His regular driver, Daniel Laflamme, is back in the sulky once again. Not a strong leaver at the start of his races, Jamigo makes up for it as very good closer. In his last start he stalked the leaders in fourth place and then rallied late to win by a neck. The prior start he made his move on the outside in the backstretch, trotted to the lead by the top of the stretch and won with ease by three and one-half lengths. "Jamigo had allergy problems this summer," said Laflamme. "And now he is in great shape." Will starting from the rail post position help him this Sunday? "The rail post position can help him on Sunday," Laflamme said. He will lose less ground after the start." The morning line favorite is former track record holder and Quebec Series Champion, Seeyou Men. He starts from post five for driver Stephane Brosseau. In his last three starts, Seeyou Men has won twice, the fastest a 1:57.4 triumph at Rideau Carleton. In post six is R Rkadabra, whom nearly every week has cut super-fast early fractions and is expected to do the same on Sunday. Other contenders include Stonebridge Alert (post three) who is moving up in class after a strong win last week, Dance Hall George (post two), Holiday Party (post four and Powerful Glare (post seven). This will be the last race card at H3R where drivers will be allowed to use whips in the race. The last two programs at H3R there will no whips allowed in the races. This is a special trial being done by the Quebec Jockey Club. Post time Sunday is 12:50 pm. For a free race program, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

Trois-Rivieres, QC - When the trotter Jamigo and driver Daniel Laflamme take to the racetrack Sunday in the 7th race Invitational-Handicap at the Hippodrome 3R, they will bring a long-time relationship behind the starting gate. Jamigo is a ten-year-old gelded son of Amigo Hall and has raced every year of his career, most of that time under the tutelage of Laflamme of Terrebonne. "I had noticed that Jamigo was racing very well in London, Ontario," Laflamme said. "But I thought he was just an ordinary horse. When I knew that he was for sale I thought he might be a good horse for racing at the Hippodrome 3R, so we bought him." Over the years Jamigo has had numerous trainers and owners, but eventually Laflamme, along with his wife and trainer, Manon Lamothel, now own him outright. "He is a nice horse to train and take care of." Laflamme explained. "The special side of him is his heart. He always gives the maximum effort he can." Last year was Jamigo's best season of his career as he posted seven wins, the fastest a 1:57.2 mile in winning the Invitational Gold Trot at the Hippodrome 3R, just one-fifth of a second shy of tying his lifetime record. In his return to the Hippodrome 3R on opening day April 29, Jamigo and Laflamme ended up being parked out first-over from the half mile, finally clearing to the lead at the three-quarters and then winning by one and one-quarter lengths in 2:03.3 on a sloppy track that had a three second allowance. How will Jamigo do this Sunday against some tough trotters? "I think he is ready to face the best on Sunday," Laflamme said. "But winning is another story we shall see." In the seventh race feature, Jamigo will face some formattable foes in Holiday Party and Rocky Boy. Holiday Party is the race favorite and goes from post eight for driver Francis Picard. He has one win this season, but that was a lifetime mark of 1:55.2 taken at Woodbine earlier this season. Just last week he was second in the Invitational-Handicap Trot, race timed in 1:58.1. Rocky Boy is in good form for driver Marc Bellanger and goes from post five. Last week the eight-year-old gelding by Rocky Balboa was third to Torches Angel's 1:57.4 mile, finished third behind Holiday Party. Other contenders include Four Starzz Speed (post seven), Tuscans Memory (post 2) and return winner Ado Duharas (post four). Track Notes: The Hippodrome 3R's leading dash winning champion from last year, Stephane Brosseau, is already leading all drivers after the first two race days with seven wins. He will have plenty of opportunities to expand on that lead as he has a drive in all ten races on Sunday. Owner/breeder Dr. John Bradberry has said that his champion three-year-old pacer from last year, Wildriverbumblebee, who remains eligible to the $200,000 Prix D'Ete, looks ready to make his first qualifier of the year at the Hippodrome 3R next Saturday. First race post time Sunday is 12:50 pm. For a free race program, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club          

Trois-Riveres, QC - He's on a five-race winning streak and now Wildriverbumblebee is returning to his home track at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday to take on older rivals in the Invitational Pace. The lone three-year-old is facing five older male rivals and one tough mare as Wildriverbumblebee has his work cut out for him once again in the eighth race co-feature race. It's not the first time he has faced older rivals. His five-race win streak began back on August 6 at Rideau Carlton where he was able to leave and get a perfect two-hole trip, drawing off in the stretch to win in 1:54.1. Since then, it was all stakes races and all victories. Owned and bred by Dr. John Bradbury of Cookshire-Easton, Wildriverbumblebee is a son of Sportswriter from the Mach Three mare, Alcor Semalu. His record this season is seven wins in just nine starts with one second place finish. His is trained by Francis Richard, whose Universal Training Rating at H3R is a very impressive .425, mainly because of Wildriverbumblebee's success this season. On Sunday, he starts from the outside in post seven for driver Stephane Brosseau, the leading driver at H3R this season. Wildriverbumblebee's current winning streak includes not only one leg, but also the C$65,000 final of the Breeders Cup Series at H3R, then it was two legs of the Ontario Sire Stakes Grassroots Series, taking his lifetime mark of 1:51.2 at Mohawk Raceway. Then last week was the icing on the cake as he won the C$50,000 Grassroots final at Mohawk in 1:52.1. "I am very happy," said trainer Francis Richard." "and also blessed to have him in my barn." It seems that Wildriverbumblebee has no issues in traveling hours on end for his races. On his five-race winning streak he has been at H3R, Rideau Carlton, Georgian Downs and Mohawk Raceway. That's a lot of road travel time in the horse trailer. "He travels very well," Richard said. "He's had a good week now. He shipped home from Mohawk in very good shape for Sunday's race." What training schedule does Richard do for Wildriverbumblebee between all the shipping to different tracks? "It is never the same every week," Richard explained. "I go with how he is feeling. He does get time in the paddock every morning." With no more stakes races on his schedule for three-year-olds, Wildriverbumblebee now has to face older horse in overnight races, which is no easy task. On Sunday, he will be going against Team Allard's Crombie A, who starts from post five for driver Mario Charron. Crombie A, two starts back, was second to Glass Shadow in the Invitational Pace at H3R. Also in the race is return winner, National Debt, for driver Stephane Gendron. Last week National Debt won at Rideau Carlton in 1:54 for his seventh win this season for trainer Yves Tessier, who is currently the second leading percentage trainer in all of Canada at .428. Other contenders in the field include the lone mare, Rainbow Palace (post six), who is seeking her seventh win on the year, Mr Mach Jimmy (post four) and Highpoint Chip (post one), who is gunning for his ninth win this year for trainer/driver Pascal Berube. "It's a nice group of horses," Richard said. "It's always tougher going against older horses. I think my colt will do fine even from the outside post. He has shown he can race well on the lead or from behind." Sunday's strong race card at H3R also features an Invitational Trot in the ninth race where Jamigo seeks a repeat performance. After a dismal performance at Rideau Carlton last week, Jamigo looks to rebound back at his home track. Two starts back the eight-year-old gelded son of Amigo Hall beat the best at H3R in 1:59.4. He will start from post seven for driver Daniel Laflamme and they are going for their eighth win this year. Torches Angel, one of just two mares in the field of nine, is coming off a 1:58 score at Rideau Carlton last week for trainer Yves Tessier and goes from post five for driver Stephane Brosseau. Other contenders include Moonbeam Hall for driver/trainer Pascal Berube. He has been second or first in his last three starts at H3R but for the second straight start, drew poorly with post eight again. Veteran trotter, Four Starz Speed (post six) is the oldest competitor in the field at age 12 but still has plenty of trot, finishes second in his last two outings for driver/trainer Kevin Maquire. Post time Sunday is 12:30 pm. For a free race program, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

TRIOS-RIVIERES, Quebec - The 1/5 wagering favorite Y S Suzanne saw her four-race winning streak come to an end Tuesday evening at the Hippodrome 3R as Y A Jailhouse Jodi wore her down in the stretch to pull off an upset victory in the third leg of the Quebec-Bred Series. Seven four and five-year-old trotting mares went to post in the third race, the first of two divisions for mares and horses. It was the overwhelming favorite Y S Suzanne, who had soundly defeated Y A Jailhouse Jodi the last two weeks, who went right out to the early lead for driver Stephane Gendron with Grace And Claire (Sylvain Lacaille) grabbing the two-hole seat to the opening quarter in :29.4. Then before the half mile marker, driver Guy Gagnon sent Y A Jailhouse Jodi first over after Y S Suzanne, past the half mile pole in 1:00.4, Y A Jailhouse Jodi continued to gain ground and was head and head with Y S Suzanne at the three-quarters in 1:30.4. Nearly staying stride-for-stride around the final turn, Guy Gagnon kept after Y A Jailhouse Jodi down the stretch and they were able to collar Y S Suzanne and then beat them to the wire, winning by one-quarter of a length in 2:02. Grace And Claire was third. For Y A Jailhouse Jodi, who was the Quebec-Bred Series Champion last year at age 3, it was the first win in seven starts this year for the four-year-old mare by Andover Hall. She is trained by Michel Allard and co-owners Yves Sarrazin and the Allard Racing Stable. Sent off at odds of 9/2, Y A Jailhouse Jodi paid $11.00 to win. The horse division of the Quebec-Bred Series was a non-wagering race with just four started and was held between the fourth and fifth races on the program. KFB Amigo Cool and driver Stephane Brosseau were quickly on the lead with Holiday Gift (Sylvain Fontaine) grabbing the two-hold seat to the opening quarter mile. Then with a burst of speed, Holiday Party, who won last week's second round for driver Pascal Berube, shot to the lead before the half mile marker. Down the backstretch, Holiday Party, last year's three-year-old colt champion, held command of the race, but then in the stretch, Brosseau came after Holiday Party with KFB Amigo Cool and they were able to nip Holiday Party at the wire by a head in 2:02. Holiday Gift was third. It was the second win in five starts this year for KFB Amigo Cool. The four-year-old ridgling by Amigo Hall is trained by Dany Fontaine, who also trains Holiday Party. KFB Amigo Cool is owned by the KFB Stable. Track Notes: Trainer Michel Allard sent out two winners on the program, also the trainer of Herspeedfromheaven ($7.50) in the fourth race. Live racing resumes at H3R on Sunday, June 18 with first race post time at 12:30 pm. For more information, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club      

December 31, 2015 - Monte (RUS) action has been completed in Canada and the US with several pari-mutuel events held at the Ontario raceways and an active monte schedule of harness racing programs especially in New York State. Santo Domingo (8g Amigo Hall-Victory Lady-Garland Lobell), with Europe’s Philippe Masschaele aboard, set a new North American record of 1:56.4s on Mohawk’s seven-eighths mile oval in a pari-mutuel event, one of many in Ontario on which a full slate of wagering options produced comparable all-pools handle with sulky (attele) contests on the same cards. Santo Domingo produced a 3-1-0 slate in five starts for trainer Mike Guitard and owners Jalade Investments, Deanman Sons Stable and Peter Misculazi, and he earned US$10,647.  Winner’s Star K posted three US victories. Natalie Elliott led all North American riders with four wins good for earnings of US$8,760. Michelle Miller earned four wins in the US.  Trainers leading the 2015 stats included Michael Miller with four US wins and Mike Guitard and Pam Forgie posted three each in Ontario. We wish to thank all participants for their support of the 2015 monte programs and to RUS Ontario and RUS New York for their excellent promotion of monte racing throughout the year. Also thanks to sponsors of monte and to tracks hosting the competitive racing events in Canada and the US. Ontario tracks hosted 11 pari-mutuel monte races (Flamboro and Georgian two each) and winners were clocked in better than 2:01 on five occasions (Santo Domingo in 1:56.4s at Mohawk for Philippe Masschaele, a North American record, in 1:59.3h at Flamboro with Marit Valstad aboard, and 2:00.2f at Georgian Downs for Sarah Town; Tragically Shipp 1:59.4f at Georgian for Natalie Elliott; and Massive Muscles 2:00.3h at Flamboro for Riina Rekila). In the US Funny Photo scored at Vernon in 2:02.2s for Sophie Engerran, Hyway Marcus at Ocean Downs 2:02h for Maria Andersson and Bozak 2:02.3h for Helene Gregory. Sources: USTA’s David Carr, RUS Ontario, RUS New York Monteamerica.com Thomas H. Hicks

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - Two-year-old trotter Wildwild Men rewrote a 22-year-old harness racing track record at the Hippodrome 3R Wednesday in capturing the first of two elimination divisions of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series. Driven by Robert Shepherd, Wildwild Men traded control of the early lead with Panamas Boy (Stephane Brosseau) and they sped to a quick opening quarter mile in :28.2. Once settled on the lead and in control, Shepherd and Wildwild Men backed down the pace as they led the field past the half mile marker in 1:00. Then in the backstretch, Sass and driver Clarke Steacy came first-over to try and mount a challenge, but Wildwild Men would have nothing to do with that and he kicked in another gear after the three-quarters in 1:31.2. By the top of the stretch, Wildwild Men was leading by four and one-half lengths and then poured it on with a :29.1 last quarter mile to win in a romp by six and one-half open lengths in 2:00.3. The prior track record for two-year-old trotters was 2:01.3 set by Jobie Tempest (Claude St-Jacques) in 1993. Trained by Isabelle D'Darveau and co-owned by Catheline Pelletier with breeder Chantal Gravel, it was the third straight win for Wildwild Men. The gelded son of Muscle Mass now has four wins in seven starts this year. He paid just $2.30 to win. In the fourth race, second division, KFB Amigo Cool and driver Guy Gagnon were able to stay on stride and wire the field, scoring an upset over the 1/5 race favorite, Tuscans Memory (Pascal Berube). KFB Amigo Cool went right out to the early lead, stuffing a determined SOS Chico (Jocelyn Gendron) into the pocket seat to the opening quarter mile in :29. KFB Amigo Cool then led to the half mile in 1:01.2 when Berube came first-over with Tuscans Memory. Past the three-quarters in 1:32.3, KFB Amigo Cool would not give ground to Tuscans Memory around the final turn as they battled head and head for the lead. Tuscans Memory then went wide as they started down the stretch and could not catch KFB Amigo Cool, who won by one and one-quarter lengths in 2:03. Defi Normand (Pierre Bovay) was third. Sent off at odds of 6-1, KFB Amigo Cool paid $14.00 to win. It was his maiden victory after four lifetime starts for the ridgling son of Amigo Hall, who is trained by Dany Fontane for owner/breeder Investissement K F B of Sorel-Tracy, QC. This was the third and final preliminary round of the series. Now the top eight point earners from the filly and colt divisions, return on Sunday, September 6 for their respective $65,000 finals. On Sunday the two-year-old pacing colts and fillies compete in their third round of the series. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

Breewood Brier (Amigo Hall) picked a good time to earn her first victory of the harness racing season at Saratoga as the eight year old trotting mare prevailed in the $16,300 Spa Spring Claiming Series Final. The Steve Millard-trained trotter finished second in both legs of the series leading up to Sunday's final and was dismissed at odds of 6-1 in the mile and 1/4 trot. Breewood Brier left early and wound up sitting third before tipping to the far outside in the race's final quarter. As soon as driver Wally Hennessey gave her her cue, Breewood Brier powered out three wide and swooped the group in a matter of strides before winning by three lengths and stopping the timer in 2:30.4 for the mile and ¼. Net Revenue (Jordan Derue), who scored victories in both legs of the series, finished second in Sunday's final while Sir Kensington (Bruce Aldrich Jr) earned the show spot. Breewood Brier returned $14.80 to win and led an exacta and triple that paid $118.50 and $646, respectively. Live racing resumes on Thursday at Saratoga featuring the New York Sire Stakes for two year old colt and gelding trotters. First post time is set for 4:00pm. Mike Sardella  

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- The harness racing record book hasn't been safe recently at Buffalo Raceway and Winkys Pride sure is helping in re-writing it.   For the second time in three weeks, Winkys Pride ($3.90) set a new standard in winning the $10,500 Open Trot at Buffalo Raceway Wednesday night (June 24), going the mile in 1:57.0. The time broke the all-aged mares trotting record and aged (5+) mare mark of 1:57.2 established by her on June 10th.   It was the ninth time in 2015 that a track record has either been tied or broken at the lightning-fast Hamburg half-mile oval located at the Erie County Fairgrounds.   Driver Drew Monti was all smiles in the winner's circle with Winkys Pride after the victory, saying "Wow, another track record, but it was tougher than I expected."   Being assigned the six-post, Winkys Pride went right to the top and posted splits of 29.0, 58.3 and 1:28.1. But it was the hard-charging Serious George (Shawn Gray) which made Winkys Pride work hard late and hold on for the half length win. Studio City (Ron Beback Jr.) finished in third.   Owned and trained by Robert Hummel, Winkys Pride (Amigo Hall - Winkys Smile-Yankee Paco) is a 7-year-old mare who now has four victories in 2015, earning $20,394 along the way. She has made $196,317 lifetime.   In the $9,500 Open II pace for the fillies and mares, Kisses N Kicks ($7.70) roared down the stretch and nipped the pace-setting Infrontigo Hanover by a nose in 1:56.4.   With Infrontigo Hanover putting up fractions of 28.2, 58.1 and 1:27.4, she looked home free until Kisses N Kicks (David McNeight III) arrived on the scene at the top of the stretch. Using a 28.3 last panel, Kisses N Kicks got up in the shadow of the wire to pin the disappointing setback on Infrontigo Hanover (Jim McNeight). Country Delight (Jack Flanigen) took the show spot.   Owned by Courtney McNeight and trained by McNeight III, it was the seventh win in 21 starts for the 7-year-old mare. Kisses N Kicks (Life Sign-Kissing Rain) now has bankrolled $37,553 this season and $195,960 lifetime.   Kevin Cummings finished the night with three victories while David McNeight III and Jim McNeight doubled.   Racing will continue on Friday night with a 10-race program scheduled to go to the post at 6:35 p.m.   For more information including the latest news, upcoming promotions, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- The old saying goes, 'harness racing records were made to be broken'. At Buffalo Raceway, that cliche is sure holding true.   For the eighth time this season, a track record was broken on the lightning fast half-mile oval at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg. There already have been seven different divisional standards re-established in 2015   Wednesday night (June 10) in the $9,500 conditioned trot, Winkys Pride had the honors of getting her name in the record book with a 1:57.2 time over the fast track. The time broke the trotting mark for all-aged mares of 1:58.1 set on April 22, 2015 by Serendipitious and the aged (5+) mare standard of 1:58.2 set by Escrow Blue Chip in 2012.   Driver Drew Monti set reasonable marks with Winkys Pride ($5.90), putting up times of 29.2, 59.1 and 1:29.0. But the clincher was the last panel as Monti had Winkys Pride in high gear, posting a 28.2 last quarter. It put away second place finisher Diamonds For Life (Cummings) and Justgottogetthere (Jim McNeight) who took third.   Owned and trained by Robert Hummel, the 7-year-old Winkys Pride (Amigo Hall-Winky's Smile) has now won four times in nine tries this season, putting $14,527 in the bank. It also moved her career earnings to $186,062.   Don Rothfuss doesn't climb in the sulky very much these days but after the drive he gave It's De Lovely in the $9,500 Open II pace for the fillies and mares, he should consider a comeback.   Looking hopelessly boxed in by several horses in mid-stretch, Rothfuss squeezed It's De Lovely through a narrow gap and she did the rest after that, pacing away to a half-length win over A Cameo In Life in 1:56.4 over the fast track.   For Rothfuss, it was only his 10th start in the bike this season and was his first victory. It was also the first win for him at Buffalo Raceway since 2010.   A Cameo In Life (Kevin Cummings) took command from the start and set the tempo with fractions of 27.1, 58.4 and 1:28.0. Eyemajet (Shawn Gray) drafted along in the pocket, dipped to the passing lane, and looked like the major threat in mid-stretch. Those two seemed to destined to duke it out to the wire, but It's De Lovely had other ideas. She found a small seam and zoomed on past to notch the $18.20 victory. A stunned A Cameo In Life held on for second while Eyemajet took the show spot.   Co-owned by Michael and Howard Ouriel and trained by Rothfuss, It's De Lovely (Four Starzz Shark-Reflect Upon Life) has now scored four victories in 14 starts in 2015, earning $22,715 on the year. It also jacked up the classy 8-year-old mare's lifetime earnings to $630,667.   For 18-year-old Wade Tomaszewski, it was a memorable night for him as he scored his first pari- mutual victory of his career by taking V'La Faire gate-to-wire in 1:56.4, returning $4.60 as the favorite. Tomaszewski has been knocking on the door for his first win. He was in the money in 4-of-8 career starts before registering his first win in his ninth appearance.   The 10-race card was marred by an accident a the start of the sixth race, which was declared a 'no-contest' by the judges. There were no serious injuries to either horses or drivers.   Racing will continue on Friday night with a 10-race card slated for 6:35 p.m.   For more information including the latest news, upcoming promotions, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway  

Friday’s nine-race card at Northlands Park turned out to be another profitable harness racing evening for Travis Cullen thanks to a training hat trick which included an impressive come-from-behind score in the feature race with Sing Like An Angel. Cullen, who took home the inaugural Future Star Award at last year’s O’Brien Awards, got the ball rolling when he guided Burnt On Top to a 1:57.1 tally in Race 4. The five-year-old son of Blue Burner drew clear to win by 11-1/2 lengths in the $4,200 affair. He also clicked with stablemate Summons just three races later in a $4,300 claiming tilt. The four-year-old son of Ponder was a front-stepping winner in a sharp clocking of 1:55. Sing Like An Angel gave Cullen his third winner of the night, but she was handled by Phil Giesbrecht. He picked up the ‘live’ catch-drive behind the four-year-old daughter of Bettors Delight, and he made the most of the opportunity. To view the rest of this story click here. Gracie Montana has found winning ways After starting the year a dismal 0-for-26, pacing mare Gracie Montana has really found her winning ways late in the season at Fraser Downs for owners Jeff and Debbie Elchuk of Surrey, British Columbia. The seven-year-old daughter of Camluck-Sportstalk recently moved back into the barn of trainer/driver Bill Davis, and it’s been a profitable homecoming for the 37-time winner. Gracie Montana got away sixth in Friday’s $10,500 Fillies & Mares Open – a class that she’s won in three of her last four outings – before making a bold move in the late stages of the mile en route to the impressive victory. When Davis cut her loose in the lane she responded by driving away to the 1:55.4 score over Skade and Just One More. To view the rest of this story click here. Flamboro Preferred To Lexis D J Lexis D J disappointed as the favourite in last week’s $11,000 Preferred 3 for trotters at Flamboro Downs, but he redeemed himself with a come-from-behind tally in Friday’s feature at Canada’s fastest half-mile oval. With Bob McClure barking out orders from the racebike, Lexis D J got away sixth in the early going while Hesgotlegs fired to the front and laid down panels of :28.2, :59 and 1:28.4. The leader’s legs got soft late, however, and opened the door for a host of challengers from the backfield. The 'livest' of those threats was Lexis D J, who made a bold move at the three-quarter pole en route to winning by a head in 1:59.2. Dragin The Wagon was a determined runner-up, with third prize earned by race favourite Can I Say. Shane Arsenault of Freelton, Ontario trains and owns the seven-year-old son of Amigo Hall-Lexus Lulu. It was the fifth win of the year – and the 31st to date – for the career winner of $379,612. To view the rest of this story click here.

The Joe Cirasuola-trained ABC Muscles Boy savoured a Thursday evening score at Woodbine Racetrack, and in doing so he extended his winning streak to four in a row. The red-hot ABC Muscles Boy entered Cirasuola’s barn late last month, and since joining his outfit the gelding is a perfect three-for-three. Phil Hudon had the gelding parked every step of the mile while Seven Points Jesse and Walk The Plank took turns on the lead through intervals of :27.3, :58 and 1:27.1. ABC Muscles Boy kept digging on the outside despite the long trip and used his :29.2 closing quarter to win by three lengths over Walk The Plank in 1:56.4. Sorrento Hall was third. To view the rest of this story click here. Upset for Lexis D J at Flamboro Seven square gaiters went postward in Thursday’s $11,000 Preferred Trot at Flamboro Downs, and Lexis D J turned a third-over trip into a 7-1 upset score for driver Bob McClure. Lexis D J got away fourth while Enough About You and A Nashty Business took turns on the lead through fractions of :29.1, :58.4 and 1:29. Race favourite Can I Say was first-over in the back-half of the contest, and riding cover from third over was the eventual winner, Lexis D J. McClure launched his charge off cover late in the mile and used a :30.1 kicker to win by 1-1/2 lengths over Winkys Pride. A Nashty Business faded to finish third. Shane Arsenault of Freelton, Ontario trains and owns the seven-year-old son of Amigo Hall-Lexus Lulu. It was the fourth win of the campaign for the 30-time winner who lifted his lifetime earnings to $372,792 with the tally. To view the rest of this story click here. Western Fair amended race schedule It has been announced that the director of the Ontario Racing Commission has approved the application made by the Western Fair Association to amend the 2014 race date schedule for The Raceway at Western Fair District. The director has approved the following: (RACE DATE) (FIRST-RACE POST TIME) • Friday, December 26, 2014 • 1:15 p.m. (change from 7:05 p.m.) • Wednesday, December 31, 2014 • 8:00 p.m. (change from 4:05 p.m.)

A tripped-out Winkys Pride got the upper hand on her male rivals in Thursday’s $7,000 Preferred 3 for trotters at Flamboro Downs, and that was music to the ears of the handicappers that backed her at odds of 7-1. Rob Jenkins got away second with Winkys Pride while race favourite Lexis D J led the field through fractions of :28.3, :59.2 and 1:29.2. Jenkins found clearance for his mare in the lane and she responded by storming home in :29.3 to post the two-length decision over Lexis D J in 1:59.1. Taking home third prize was Excellence. To view the rest of this story click here. Harvey Bellwood passes, age 88 Longtime owner Harvey Bellwood of Stayner, Ont. passed away suddenly on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 at the age of 88. Bellwood owned Standardbreds for decades, among those was pacer Bellwood Charms, a winner of 29 lifetime races through the 1970s. Beloved husband of the late Fran. Loving father of Lou Bellwood and his wife Rhonda of Utopia. Dear grandpa of Kade and Jax Bellwood. Also survived by his sister Helen Hanna of Alliston and his brother-in-law Ralph (Norma) Hackett of Stayner and their families. To view the rest of this story click here.

Kentucky Futurity Day showcased North America’s monte racing as six harness racing entrants contested the $10,000 exhibition event Sunday. Therese Lindgren piloted In Nomine Patri to victory with a rallying 2:00.3 win, last quarter in a sharp :27.2. The winner, a six year-old gelded son of Credit Winner-Blue Skies Hanover-Donerail, is trained by Liisa Vatanen, co-owner with American Dream Racing Stable. Pacesetter Chinese Cuisine was a solid second for Tina Duer with Flowing James home third for Tara Hynes. In Nomine Patri Ontario monte action also continued with Western Fair’s pari-mutuel test on October 3rd. The $3,000 purse event went to Lexus Hawkeye (5g Amigo Hall-Lexus Lulu-Angus Hall) and N. Elliott. Radical Dreamer (Marit Valstad)  and Twin B Excalibur (E. Harms) trailed the 2:04.3h winner. Next up in Ontario monte action is October 12 at Leamington. monteamerica.com Thomas H. Hicks

With one of the most impressive three-wide sweeps from last place after the half mile in harness racing, Decret Justiciale and trainer/driver Denis Filion was able to collar pacesetter Margarita Bi  in the stretch and go on to win the feature trot at the Hippodrome 3R Tuesday evening. The ninth race main event was billed with the two track record holders, Margarita Bi and Decret Justiciale, going to do battle, but few thought the race would go as it did. Margarita Bi and owner/driver Denis St. Pierre was able to take the early lead away from Easy Virtue (Patrick Richard) by the opening quarter mile in :28.4 and then led the field to the half mile in :58.4. At that point Bel Gazou (Martin Gingras) came first-over and gave outside cover to Erge Baboche (Stephane Brosseau) as the field raced around the third turn and headed to the backstretch. Once the field reached the backstretch was when Denis Filion took Decret Justiciale from dead last in eighth place and sent his trotter three-wide and he was able to work his way despite the long journey, up to third place on the final turn after passing the three-quarters in 1:28.1. Then after they straighten out for the stretch drive to the wire, Decret Justiciale still had momentum and kicked in another gear to not only collar Margarita Bi in mid-stretch, but pass her by to win by one length in 1:57.4. Bel Gazou was able to hold on for third place. It was the second straight win and sixth victory in nine starts this year for Decret Justiciale. The five-year-old gelded son of Amigo Hall is owned by Danielle Levac of St Augustin-Mirabel, QC and paid $2.90 to win as the wagering favorite. In the seventh race feature pace, Windham Hanover and trainer/driver Norman Beaudon were able to lead from start to finish and win with ease by two open lengths in 1:55.2. That was the fastest mile of the evening as Windham Hanover posted his second victory this season and paid $17.80 to win. From the Quebec Jockey Club

The three-year-old trotting fillies of the Ontario Sires Stakes are back in harness racing action in both Gold and Grassroots action over the next two days. Six $18,000 Grassroots divisions highlight tonight's night’s card at Mohawk Racetrack. The following evening two $105,000 Gold divisions will be part of Grand River’s Wednesday night program. Making her OSS debut tonight at Mohawk is Acapulco Hall, a daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe who has post five in race five. A winner in her only lifetime start, on July 29 at Pocono Downs, in 1:57.4 for former trainer Fred Grant, the filly has been transferred to the Rick Zeron barn for her Ontario stay. What makes her appearance notable is the fact that she’s a half-sister to 2003 Hambletonian winner Amigo Hall, the second Ontario-sired horse to ever win the coveted event. Ontario trainer Blair Burgess orchestrated that Balanced Image horse’s career which saw him earn in excess of $1 million lifetime. In addition to being a top Grand Circuit performer, Amigo Hall was also dominant in the Ontario Sires Stakes program during his sophomore season, earning over $270,000 from just five starts. Amigo Hall’s baby sister Acapulco Hall is owned by breeder Walnut Hall Limited of Kentucky. She is the 11th foal from the Meadow Road daughter Alis Cat. Amigo Hall stood stud at Tara Hills Stud in Port Perry. He has one starter in the Grassroots event in Valencia Sol who has post one in race 11. Another filly with a brother who was very successful in the Hambletonian is Tosca who has post four in the first of the two Gold splits at Grand River Wednesday. Trainer Per Henriksen of Norwood, Ontario, trains the Muscle Mass daughter he co-owns with Steve Organ of Aurora, Ontario. Tosca’s half-brother Guccio came within a whisker of winning the 2012 Hambletonian, finishing a neck back in second to winner Market Share. Ironically their dam, Southern Senorita, is sired by Yankee Paco, who was the first Ontario-sired horse to win the Hambletonian. He accomplished the feat in 2000 for trainer Doug McIntosh. Both Amigo Hall and Yankee Paco, the only two Ontario-sired colts to capture the Hambletonian to date, were sired by the late, great Balanced Image, a member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. Tomorrow’s divisions at Mohawk Racetrack go postward as races two, three, five, six, 10 and 11 while the two Gold divisions at Grand River on Wednesday are in races one and three. The programs for each may be viewed through these links.  Mohawk Entries - August 12.  Grand River Entries - August 13. Ontario Sire Stakes

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