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Northfield Park, Ohio's premier racetrack in pari-mutuel handle, both on-track and export, is offering live harness racing four nights a week to start the 2018 racing year. January through September racing is scheduled for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday. The exceptions to this schedule are the addition of two Sundays, May 27 and September 2. There is no live racing on Memorial Day or Labor Day Mondays. Beginning in October Northfield adds Sunday evenings and will race five nights a week until the end of the ear. Thursday (December 27) will replace Christmas Eve Monday, while Friday (December 21) will replace racing on Christmas Tuesday. Northfield Park's marquee racing events are as follows: $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie Saturday, June 2; $175,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic Saturday, June 30; $400,000 Carl Milstein Memorial and $50,000 Myron Charna President's Pace Saturday, August 11; and $125,000 Courageous Lady Saturday, October 13. The $125,000 (est.) Summit County Fair Stakes, featuring many of Ohio's best freshman and sophomore trotters and pacers, will be held on Saturday, July 28. $60,000 four-and-up Ohio Sires Stake Finals will be raced on Saturday, October 6. The Flying Turns will host eight $60,000 divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes Consolations on Saturday, October 13 (Courageous Lady Night). Each of the 221 live racing nights carries a first race post time of 6:00 p.m. Northfield Park is open daily from noon until after midnight for simulcasting action from tracks across the United States, Canada and Australia. Ayers Ratliff

Chris Page drove from his hometown of Delaware, Ohio, to Northfield Park on Monday (October 30) needing just one win to reach his 4,000 harness racing career milestone. The program started and Page went right to work, winning the very first race of the evening aboard Scarlet Cat. He started from post-2 and sat the pocket through fractions of :27.4, :57 and 1:25.1. Page tipped Scarlet Cat approaching the stretch and the sophomore gelding paced by his competition, winning by 1½-lengths in a lifetime best 1:54.2. Page is not from a "horse family." Neither of his parents have ever been involved in harness racing. His love for horses began when he started helping his cousin, Tom Hall, work in his stable at the Knox County (Mount Vernon, Ohio) Fairgrounds. His love for the sport was cemented when he attended his first Little Brown Jug. "That was the year that Life Sign won," recalled Page, "It was an epic Jug and is one of the best races ever." Chris drove his first race in 2000, finishing sixth in a $900 FFA pace at the Knox County Fair. He won his first race in 2001 at the Champaign County Fair aboard Titanic Fella. Page graduated from Mount Vernon High School in 2002 and then attended The Ohio State University. Chris' driving career started blossoming in 2006 and he has since driven several sub-1:50 miles and has purse earnings that are approaching $30 million. His richest win is a $250,000 Ohio Sires Stakes Final. Crazy Wow is Chris' favorite horse to drive. However, the best Page has ever steered is Foiled Again, the richest horse in the history of harness racing. "What an honor it was to drive him," explained page. Page, 33, says his future plans all include staying in Ohio. "I have traveled a lot and have driven at a lot of tracks," said Page. "At this point of my life, I am happy making a living right here at home. After all, I'm a Buckeye, baby!" Ayers Ratliff

The Burke brigade has finished first and second in harness racing many times, but few of those times have resulted in a $433 Exacta. However, that was the result of Saturday's $120,000 Courageous Lady at Northfield Park when Rosemary Rose and Pittstop Danika crossed the line first and second. Rosemary Rose was driven by Mike Wilder and sat sixth through the opening lap with fractions of :26.4 and :55. She pulled third over and found herself three wide the final 3/8 of the mile. She struck the lead approaching the top of the stretch and bested her competition by 1¾-legths in 1:53. "I love this filly," admitted Wilder. "She might have been a longshot on the board, but I always thought she had a big chance." Ron Burke, harness racing's leading trainer, conditions Rosemary Rose for owners Burke Racing Stable, Jason Melillo and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. The victory is Burke's fourth win of this event in the last five years, scoring with Charisma Hanover in 2013, Fiyonce in 2014 and Sassa Hanover in 2015. "I knew she would be ready, Ronnie (Burke) has them ready for every dance," said Wilder. Completing the field were Pittstop Danika, Bettor's Up, Terrortina, Bourbon And Barley, Ella Christina and Big City Betty. Al-Mar-Got A Fever was scratched sick. Rosemary Rose (Foreclosure N-Pantathion-The Panderosa) now has 11 wins in 24 lifetime starts. Saturday's victory increased her career bankroll to $231,292. She returned $20.60 to win. Ayers Ratliff  

Northfield Park is hosting a "Pace for the Cure" on Saturday, October 14, an event that is part of "Pinktober," a month-long effort to raise funds to fight breast cancer, at the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park. The race features nine female harness racing drivers and is the 10th race on a 15-race card evening. Post time is 6 pm. "We are committed to playing an active role in the Hard Rock Rocksino's Pinktober event," said Brent Reitz, Northfield Park Vice President and General Manager. "The 'Pace for the Cure' is a great way to highlight harness racing and create awareness and support for breast cancer research." The Pinktober "Pace for the Cure" will carry a $7,500 purse. Among the participants are local trainer/drivers Rachel Kaneoka and Rosy Weaver. The most accomplished among the guest drivers is Jayne Weller, who has scored nearly 200 victories. She is the daughter of June Weller, the first female to ever drive in harness racing's crown jewel, the Little Brown Jug. Hannah Miller, who has posted 21 victories so far this year, may have bloodlines that give her a leg up on the competition. Her brother, Marcus Miller, a prominent national driver has over 2,800 wins and purse earnings in excess of $30 million. The race's other participants include: Renee Bauslaugh, Mary Birkhold, Christina Evans, Ulrika Fox and Emily Hay. In addition to normal wagering on the "Pace for the Cure" the purchase of raffle tickets are encouraged. These tickets are $1 each or five tickets for $3. Tickets are placed into bags that correspond with each female driver. All tickets from the winning bag will be entered into a drawing for a host of prizes. Pinktober is celebrated all month at the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park which hosts a variety of events to support local cancer-fighting efforts. A portion of the proceeds from the events benefit Susan G. Komen Northeast Ohio's vision of a world without breast cancer. The monies raised as a result of Pinktober will help Susan G. Komen Northeast Ohio to provide vital services like free mammograms and clinical breast exams through partnerships with local healthcare facilities, diagnostic services, including ultrasounds, biopsies, and advanced services, and survivor support, including financial, transportation and other services. Ayers Ratliff 

Northfield Park is announcing the addition of a $20,000 Super High Five total pool guarantee to its harness racing card on Wednesday (August 23). Offered in Race 13, the $20,000 Super High Five guaranteed total pool includes a carryover of $5,353.21. Wednesday's post time is 6:00 p.m. Ayers Ratliff  

Fear The Dragon entered Saturday's $300,000 Carl Milstein Memorial at Northfield Park as harness racing's top-ranked horse. Everything looked to be going his way. He drew the rail, was the overwhelming favorite and posted soft fractions. However, Downbytheseaside paced home in :26.4 despite a tough first-over trip to best Fear The Dragon by a full length. Downbytheseaside started from post-7 and sat fifth through the opening :27.1 quarter. Driver Brian Sears pulled Downbytheseaside and grinded first-up through fractions of :56 and 1:22.4. The 1:49.3 final time was a new track record for sophomore colt pacers. "I knew he was going to have a lot left with those soft fractions," stated Sears. "I didn't want to have a speed duel." The duel came in the final quarter when Downbytheseaside drew alongside Fear The Dragon, eventually wearing him down in the stretch, returning $11.60 to win. "He put in a great effort and every time I called on him he gave more," said Sears. Brian Brown trains both colts at the historic Delaware County Fairgrounds. "I am thrilled this horse raced the way that he did and got there," said Brown. "It wasn't like Fear The Dragon raced bad." Downbytheseaside Finishing behind Downbytheseaside were Fear The Dragon, Classic Pro, Blood Line, Drunk On Your Love, Rock N Tony, R J P and Bags To Riches. Saturday's stablemate duel was intense and trainer Brian Brown indicated that the colts will meet again in September in the Little Brown Jug. Ayers Ratliff

Harness racing driver Ronnie Wrenn Jr. made his 4,000th trip to the winner's circle after winning with Sultan Of Cash in Northfield Park's 5th race on Monday (August 7th) in the 3rd leg, 3rd division $40,000 Ohio Sires Stakes Freshman Colt Trotters. Wrenn led at every call with Sultan Of Cash, eventually besting his competition by 1-1/4 lengths. The 1:59.4 clocking was the 6th career score in as many starts for the undefeated 2-year-old trotter, who returned $2.80 to win. The 30-year-old Wrenn began driving in 2008. His 4,000 wins have helped him garner almost $22 million in purse earnings. He won the 2013 and 2014 national dash driving titles; the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 Northfield Park driving titles; and the 2013 driving title at Northville Downs. Wrenn is a 2005 graduate of Hartland High School in Hartland, Michigan. He played center field for and graduated from Mott Community College in Flint. Although Wrenn comes from a racing family, he did not take an interest and become involved with horses at an early age. "I was 19 or 20 when I jogged my first horse. I was always really busy with sports and stuff," said Wrenn. "I didn't really have time for it." However, after weighing his options and slowly becoming more interested with the family business, Ronnie decided on a career in racing. "I was just sitting at the table working on homework on my computer one night and looked up and told my dad I wanted to be a driver. He looked at me like I was crazy. But I was old enough that he really didn't have a lot of say, and so far it has all worked out pretty well." Wrenn earned his first win behind Artful Power in a $1,400 Billings race at a Michigan fair. "It was hard breaking in at first. I guess I got lucky to be put on some good horses and things just took off," offered Wrenn. "My parents and grandparents really helped me a lot as well as countless other people." Wrenn's richest win ever came in the last year's $250,000 sophomore pacing Ohio Sires Stakes Championship at Northfield Park with Whataboy. His fastest victory was in 1:49.2 with Doo Wip Hanover in the 2015 Jim Ewart Memorial at Scioto Downs. Wrenn rates some of the best horses he has ever driven as Arch Madness, Betterluvnexttime, Doo Wop Hanover, Luck Be Withyou, Night Pro and Victory Is Coming. "There are many owners and trainers that have given me opportunities and I will be forever grateful to them," offered Wrenn. "To win races, a driver has to drive fast horses for talented trainers with good owners." Wrenn was married in June of this year and resides in Stow, Ohio with his wife Briana. Ayers Ratliff

Like Old Times crossed the finish as the fastest 5-year-old and up trotting mare on a half-mile track in the history of harness racing when she won Monday's $14,000 Open Trot at Northfield Park in 1:53. The record was formerly held in a three-way tie by Mystical Sunshine (Daniel Dube, 2007, Delaware Co. Fair), Autumn Escapade (David Miller, 2010, Delaware Co. Fair) and Victory Is Coming (Ronnie Wrenn Jr., 2015, Northfield Park) in 1:53.2. Keith Ross of Bellefontaine, Ohio owns Like Old Times. Northfield Park Wall of Famer, Don Mc Kirgan, is her conditioner and Peter Wrenn was in the sulky for the winning drive. Like Old Times (Chip Chip Hooray-Royal Two-Royal Troubador) started from post four. She left from the gate and sat the pocket through fractions of :27.2, :56.1 and 1:24.1. Wrenn moved Like Old Times in the final turn and she took the lead in the stretch, besting her competition by two lengths. Like Old Times now has 26 career victories and a bankroll of $458,180. She returned $8.40 to win. Earlier in the evening Peter Wrenn broke another record when he won with Shakewhatmamagaveu in 1:53.4 in the $40,000 2nd leg, 4th div Ohio Sires Stakes for freshman filly pacers. This clocking broke the track record of 1:54 formerly held by Glorious Intent (Chris Page, 2016). The record performance came in Shakewhatmamagaveu's second lifetime start. Ron Steck trains this promising filly for Don and Marcia Brake of Marysville, Ohio. Ayers Ratliff

Crazy Wow trotted home a harness racing winner in Saturday's $185,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic, dethroning last year's champion Obrigado, and continues to march through the national FFA trotting ranks. The son of Crazed entered the Classic off consecutive victories in the $150,000 Maxie Lee Invitational at Harrah's Philadelphia and the $200,000 Charlie Hill Memorial Trot at Scioto Downs, scoring in both by leading his competition from gate to wire. Crazy Wow showed versatility by flying past his competition in a thrilling stretch drive to win by ½-length in 1:52.3. The impressive clocking equaled the all-age trotting track record at Northfield Park. Crazy Wow ($9.40) started from post two and sat second behind Obrigado (Mark MacDonald) through solid fractions of :26.4, :56 and 1:24.1. Race favorite, Resolve (Ake Svanstedt) sustained a strong first-over bid and was slightly in front through the final turn, allowing Crazy Wow enough room to shift to the outside. "The trip worked out perfect. I got to loom the danger the whole way," said winning driver Chris Page. "When I got him out he showed he was a real horse and knew what to do." The race time replaces the 1:53.2 time of 2015 Cleveland Trotting Classic winner Daylon Magician (Jack Moiseyev) as the fastest mile ever on the Flying Turns for a five year-old and up trotting horse, and equaled the all-age Northfield trotting record of Muscle Up The Goal (Aaron Merriman). Saturday's win is Crazy Wow's third win this year and 18th lifetime score, increasing his bankroll to $1,865,064 for owners Our Horse Cents Stables, Stable 45, J&T Silva Stables and Deo Volente Farms and trainer Ron Burke. Completing the $185,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic were Resolve, Obrigado, Maestro Blue Chip, Il Sogno Dream, Fly Jesse Fly and Will Take Charge. Homicide Hunter was scratched from the event due to sickness. "He (Crazy Wow) is having a great 2017 campaign," explained Page. "I look for a very, very big year from this horse." Ayers Ratliff

Due to a heavy storm that forced the cancellation of live harness racing at Northfield Park on Wednesday, June 14, date changes are being announced to the trotting divisions of the Iron Maiden Series.  The scheduled opening legs of the series for both filly & mare and colt & gelding trotters were also washed away as part of the June 14 program.  All three legs and the Finals for both of the Iron Maiden Series' for trotters will be pushed back one week.  The revamped schedule is now: 1st Leg - Wednesday, June 21 2nd Leg - Wednesday, June 28 3rd Leg - Wednesday, July 5 Final - Wednesday, July 12 Northfield will make every effort to contact the trainers of each nominated horse.  Due to possible stakes conflicts that the date changes could cause, the connections of each nominated trotter will be given the option of withdrawing from the series and getting back their $200 entry fee.  Please notify Northfield's race office (330-467-4101) by 9 AM on Friday, June 16 (the time entries are due for what will now be Leg 1 of the series'), if you wish to withdraw your nomination. These changes to the trotting series will have no effect on the Iron Maiden Series for pacers, which will continue as previously scheduled.  Ayers Ratliff

Herbie L trotted home for his 50th career victory, winning the 4th race at Northfield Park on Tuesday (June 6). The nine year-old harness racing veteran, with 248 career starts, also has 30 seconds and 29 third place finishes. Herbie L (Pegasus Spur-Phar Khan-Rule The Wind) has career earnings of $220,983 with a lifetime mark of 1:55.3 at Woodbine Racetrack at age four. The trotter's richest win was in a $16,160 Conditioned Trot at Woodbine Racetrack in 2012. Herbie L is a well-traveled campaigner -- his 50 wins have been spread across 26 different racing surfaces. Herbie L started from post-2 and led his competition at every call through fraction of :28.1, :58.2, 1:27.3 and 1:58.2. Despite a late rush from the runner-up, Herbie L bested his competition by a neck. He returned $18.60 to win. Calvin Hollar trains Herbie L for owner Le Van Stables of Woodstock, Ohio. Robin Miller was aboard for the winning drive. Ayers Ratliff

All Bets Off won Saturday's $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie at Northfield Park, making him only the second horse to win both a Carl Milstein Memorial and a Battle of Lake Erie, two of the track's prestigious harness racing Grand Circuit events. Wiggle It Jiggleit accomplished the same feat. All Bets Off (Bettor's Delight - Armbro Penelope - Dexter Nukes) is owned by the partnership of Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Frank Baldachino and Panhellenic Stable. He is trained by Ron Burke. Matt Kakaley had the winning drive. As the gate pulled away from the stellar Battle field, Luck Be Withyou and Aaron Merriman rushed to the front, setting wicked-fast fractions of :26, :52.4 and 1:20.3. "I figured the race would rock and roll early. I thought I should get away mid-pack and cross my fingers," said Kakaley. "The trip worked out perfectly for us." All Bets Off started from post four and made a three-wide bid late in the third panel to make the front and best his competition by 2¼-lengths, stopping the clock at 1:49.2. The time represents a new track record for five and up pacing horses. The former 1:50.4 mark was set in 2002 by Western Millennium and Walter Case, Jr. "All Bets Off is a special horse to me and has really helped further my career to a place I'm not sure it would be without him," offered Kakaley. "This win feels good." Saturday's win marks the 25th score for All Bets Off in 86 career races and increases his bankroll to $2,372,503. All Bets Off Ayers Ratliff  

Northfield Park hosted the $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie on Saturday (June 3), and for the first year since 2009 Foiled Again did not compete in the race. However, he still stole the harness racing spotlight. After competing on the undercard, finishing fifth in the $20,000 Open Pace, the richest horse in the history of harness racing came to the grandstand apron to greet the public and pose for selfies with his fans. Foiled Again, 13, has career earnings of $7,522,128 and has won 94 races so far in his career. Three of those wins have come in Northfield's Battle of Lake Erie, making him the only three-peat winner of the event. Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting, Dave Bianconi, and Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association Track Representative, Amy Hollar, presented a plaque to part-owner Mark Weaver recognizing Team Burke and Foiled Again's historic contributions to Northfield Park. Ayers Ratliff

Northfield Park is announcing the addition of a $50,000 Pick-4 total pool guarantee on Saturdays (June 3rd) harness racing program. Beginning in Race 8, the $50,000 Pick-4 guaranteed total pool includes a carryover of $11,615.94. This Pick 4 will conclude with the $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie and is being offered as part of the Strategic Wagering Program through the United States Trotting Association. Northfield's Pick 5, Pick 4 and the Pick 3's offer a reduced takeout rate of just 14 percent. Saturday's post time is 6:00 p.m. Ayers Ratliff

Saturday's Battle of Lake Erie rivals have a combined 192 victories. Northfield Park's 11th race features a competitive harness racing field of the sport's best open pacers and will reveal who earns the 193rd win. All Bets Off drew post 4 and has been named the 5-2 slight morning-line favorite by Northfield Park Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting, Dave Bianconi. He attracts national driving star Matt Kakaley and is one of two entries in the field for the harness racing's leading trainer Ron Burke. All Bets Off makes his third local appearance. He won the inaugural $400,000 Carl Milstein Memorial in 2014 and was the runner-up (from post 8) in this event last year. He has career earnings of $2,272,503 and a 1:48.2 lifetime mark at Rosecroft's 5/8th mile oval. Luck Be Withyou enters this event off two consecutive victories and drew post 3. He has been given a 3-1 morning line. Saturday marks Luck Be Withyou's fourth start over the Flying Turns. He finished dead-heated for second in 2014 in the $400,000 Milstein and has been eighth and fourth in his two Battle attempts. Luck Be Withyou has a career bankroll of $1,339,741 and won a $500,000 Breeders Crown in 2013 and the $500,000 Ben Franklin in 2015. Guantanamo Bay drew the rail and is the 9-2 third choice. He and his driver, Vincent Ginsburg, both make their Northfield debuts. Guantanamo Bay has four wins this season and 14 career scores. He paced a lifetime best of 1:51.2 (Meadows 5/8) last year and has earned $278,538. Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the sport's best veteran pacers. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Gallo Blue Chip, Maltese Artist and Foiled Again. This will be the first year since 2009 that Foiled Again will not compete in this race. However, he is not ready to completely pass the torch and will be leading the post parade after competing in the $20,000 Open Pace on the undercard. Later in the evening he will greet fans from a special stall set up on the grandstand apron. Harness racing's richest horse, with $7,521,128 in earnings and 94 victories, loves people and is accustomed to fans who like to take selfies with him. The 2017 $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie field: Horse Driver Trainer M/L 1 - Guantanamo Bay -  by Somebeachsomewhere - Vincent Ginsburg - Daniel Renaud,  9-2 2 - Soto - by Rock N Roll Heaven - Art Stafford Jr. - Eric Ell,  6-1 3 - Luck Be Withyou - by Western Ideal - Aaron Merriman - Chris Oakes,  3-1 4 - All Bets Off  - by Bettor's Delight - Matt Kakaley - Ron Burke,  5-2 5 - Mr Wiggle Pants - By Mr Wiggles - Aaron Merriman - Scott McEneny, 5-1 6 - Night Pro - by Pro Bono Best - Ronnie Wrenn Jr. - Dale Decker, 12-1 7 - Rockin Ron - by Real Desire - Aaron Merriman - Ron Burke,  8-1 8 - Sunfire Blue Chip - by American Ideal - Mark MacDonald - Jimmy Takter,  10-1 *Final driver selections are due by 9PM on Tuesday. Superfecta wagering has been added to Friday's 11th race, the Battle feature. First race post time is 6:00 p.m. In addition to superior racing action, Battle night will also offer guests a sumptuous buffet in Lady Luck's clubhouse dining room from 6-9 p.m. The buffet is $19.95. Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 330-467-4101. Guests who want to be down close to all of the racing action can stop by the grandstand apron to visit Smash Time food truck and Crooked Kettle Popcorn. Live music by The Caliber Band will be part of the apron scene from 6-10 p.m. Scan and win with WGAR's Brian Fowler from 6-8 p.m. and play corn hole toss for prizes from 7-8 p.m. Battle night attendees will receive a bonus entry for the 60th Anniversary Car Giveaway making them eligible to win a 2017 Buick Cascada or a 2017 Honda CR-V. One lucky winner will be drawn randomly on Carl Milstein Memorial Night on August 12. Every summer has a story...start yours at Northfield Park! Ayers Ratliff

Beyonces Rockn crossed the finish line faster than any other harness racing mare in the history of Northfield Park when she won the $14,000 F&M Open Handicap in 1:51 on Saturday (May 27). The clocking formally broke the 1:52 record for five and up pacing mares, which was held by three different horses: Hidden Land (Don Irvine Jr.) from 2015, and Devil Child (David Miller) and Love Forbidden (Aaron Merriman) in 2016. The partnership of Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, M1 Stable LLC and RTC Stables Inc. own Beyonces Rockn. Ron Burke is her conditioner and Ryan Stahl was in the sulky for the winning drive. Beyonces Rockn (Rock N Roll Heaven-Im Betting On You-Bettor's Delight) started from post seven. She left from the gate and sat fourth through the initial :27.1 quarter. Stahl moved her coming to the half. She brushed to the front and never looked back through times of :56.1, 1:23 and 1:51, besting her competition by 12 ¾-lengths. Beyonces Rockn now has seven wins in 19 starts this year. Saturday's victory represents her 16th career score and bolstered her bankroll to $178,492. She was heavily favored and returned $2.60 to win. Beyonces Rockn Ayers Ratliff

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