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Batavia, NY --- Southern Palms has been knocking on the door the past two weeks in Batavia Downs top harness racing trot, but Friday night (Nov. 23) he kicked that door down and dethroned Lougazi in winning the $11,500 Open Handicap trot. Crystal Sphere (Billy Davis Jr.) and Southern Palms (Kevin Cummings) both left from mid-pack and settled on the front in that same order. After doing one lap in :58.1 the outer flow came at them with last week's winner Lougazi (Ray Fisher Jr.) sitting third in the three-horse outside assault. As the two-tiers past the five-eighths, Crystal Sphere and Southern Palms had separated from the field and Fisher tipped three-deep around the stalled outer advance, but he was still six-lengths from the front at the three-quarters in 1:27.4. Heading into the lane Cummings pulled Southern Palms and took dead-aim at Crystal Sphere, passing that one halfway down the stretch. But he still had to deal with Lougazi who was flying down the middle of the track and looked like he might reach. But Southern Palms got to the wire first and won by a head in 1:57. It was the eighth win of the year for Southern Palms ($15.60) who has now banked $66,441 in earnings this year for owner Mike Torcello. Western New York racing legend Gerry Sarama trains the winner. The $8,800 Open II trot was won by Barn Winner (Ray Fisher Jr.) who tracked the front-running Lenny Mac (Billy Davis Jr.) from the garden spot the entire mile before pulling at the head of the lane and out-trotting her to the wire to win by a head in 1:58.1. It was the fourth win of the year for Barn Winner ($5.90) who is trained by Ryan Swift for owners Tanah Merah Farm and the Swift Racing Stable. Drew Monti and Billy Davis Jr. led all drivers on Friday with two wins each on the card. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday evening (Nov. 24) with post time at 6 p.m.   By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Who has 63 lifetime wins, 14 of which were taken this year and is currently the fourth winningest mare in North America? That would be Kaitlyn Rae, who bested the top female pacers in western New York once again on Wednesday evening (Nov. 21) after she won the $10,400 Open Handicap pace for fillies and mares at Batavia Downs. Out-stepping Hey Kobe (Ray Fisher Jr.) to the front, Kaitlyn Rae (Drew Monti) took a comfortable lead to the half in :59.1 and three-quarters in 1:29 through 20-degree temperatures and a biting wind. Coming off the far turn, she opened up a two-length advantage and looked to be home free. Sportsmuffler (Billy Davis Jr.) who was last at the half, made a second-over move off cover and was barreling down the lane full of pace. Kaitlyn Rae needed the wire with Sportsmuffler gaining quickly and it came just in time as Kaitlyn Rae hung on by a head in the photo and won in 1:58.2. Kaitlyn Rae ($7.50) is flush this year, earning $75,421 for her owner/trainer Riley Asher-Stalbaum. She is also currently tied with her well-known win machine stablemate Quicksilvercandy A for wins in 2018. In the $8,800 fillies and mares Open II, Mean Pauline (Shawn McDonough) followed A Crafty Lady (Drew Monti) for seven-eighths of the mile before pulling and brushing past the pace-setter to win her fourth race of the year, timed in 1:57.3. Harry Wortzman owns Mean Pauline ($9.40) who is trained by her driver McDonough. The two hottest drivers currently competing at Batavia Downs are Denny Bucceri and Billy Davis Jr. Over the last five cards of racing Bucceri has won 13 races, including two Grand Slam performances, the second of which was on Wednesday. Bucceri rewarded his backers with scores by Donegal Jim (1:58.4, $3.70), Ciro (2:02, $36.20), Ugly Betty (1:59.4, $6.00) and Wallflower (2:00.1, $4.30). Billy Davis Jr. also won 13 races during that span and not to be outdone by Bucceri, had a driving Hat Trick on the card Wednesday. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday (Nov. 23) with post time at a special early time of 4:45 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Horsemen racing at Batavia Downs should take note of the revised draw schedule for the upcoming Thanksgiving week. There will be a double draw held on Tuesday (Nov. 20) for Friday (Nov. 23) and Saturday (Nov. 24). The box closes at 9 a.m. The main change to note is Saturday's draw is moved up one day from Wednesday to Tuesday. Driver changes for both days must be received by the judges by 3 pm on Tuesday. Also please note that post time for Friday (Nov. 23) is early at 4:45 p.m. while post time for Saturday (Nov. 24) is the regular start time of 6 p.m. For any inquiries about conditions or to call your entries in, please contact Race Secretary Joe Zambito at 585-344-6304. The complete condition sheet for racing at Batavia Downs is available on the Batavia Downs website (www.bataviadownsgaming.com) under Live Racing>Horsemen>Condition Sheet and also on the USTA website (www.ustrotting.com) by clicking Horsemen>Condition Sheet. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Undoubtedly the most exciting race of the year occurred at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 17) when Lucky McTrucky parked out all comers before driving home a winner in the $11,000 Open Handicap harness racing pacing feature. I'm So Handsome (Kevin Cummings), Lucky McTrucky (Drew Monti) and Iyq Yqr (Denny Bucceri) left the gate together and paced three-deep around the clubhouse turn and up the backstretch until I'm So Handsome relented, letting Lucky McTrucky and Iyq Yqr continue to argue at the quarter in :26.4. And argue they did. Lucky McTrucky refused to let Iyq Yqr take the front and Iyq Yqr refused to take a seat behind Lucky McTrucky so the pair paced in unison to the half in :55.1. The fanatical feud continued around the third turn before Iyq Yqr said nighty-night, but there was still no rest for the weary. Go Collect N (Billy Davis Jr.) pulled from fourth and drew alongside Lucky McTrucky past the five-eighths and a new battle ensued. Monti and Davis rocked and knocked, high-lined and bounced from the three-quarters all the way to the wire with inches between them left to right and front to back and it took a photo to call the winner. The winner was Lucky McTrucky who closed the deal by a head in 1:54.3 while the sold out clubhouse roared in appreciation. It was the 12th win of the year and 54th of his career for Lucky McTrucky ($4.90) who now boasts $85,815 in earnings this year. The uber-game 9-year-old gelded son of McArdle is owned by Tessa Roland and is trained by JD Perrin, The $9,900 Open II pace was won by Upfront Countryboy (Billy Davis Jr.) who sat third to the quarter before pulling to take the lead by the half and then pulled away by four lengths in the lane to win in 1:54.3. It was the 13th win of the year for Upfront Countryboy ($6.30) who is trained by James Clouser Jr. for owner William Emmons. Drew Monti the top teamster on Saturday scoring a Grand Slam on the card. Besides the big win with Lucky McTrucky, Monti also had pictures taken with Hardts Or Bettor (1:55.2, $10.80), Foreign Officer (1:56.2, $4.80) and Linkjack Hanover (1:56.4, $7.40). All four of Monti's wins were trainees of JD Perrin that are owned by Tessa Roland. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday afternoon (Nov. 21) at 5 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs    

Batavia, NY --- On the heels of a Nor'easter that dumped significant amounts of snow, sleet and rain in western New York, the track at Batavia Downs was swampy at best. But that didn't deter Lougazi from flexing his muscle in winning the $11,000 Open Handicap trot on Friday night (Nov. 16). Southern Palms (Kevin Cummings) outdueled Empire Earl N (Drew Monti) for the lead and paid the price with a :28.4 quarter. Cummings then grabbed leather to give his horse a breather to the half in 1:00.1. But the party ended there as rolling up on the outside when they hit that second fraction was Lougazi (Ray Fisher Jr.) and he wasn't fooling around. Lougazi hooked up with Southern Palms as they motored up the backside and the two trotted in tandem past the three-quarters and around the last turn. At the head of the stretch, Fisher gave Lougazi his head and then sat chilly in the bike as Lougazi simply walked away from the field to win by two in 2:00.1. Definitely the hottest trotter in western New York, Lougazi ($3.90) scored his 10th win of 2018 for owner Mary Warriner who has now benefited the amount of $54,570 as a result of his performances. The $8,800 Open II trot went to Crystal Sphere (BIlly Davis Jr.) who went gate to wire, pulling away in a romp and winning by six lengths in 2:00.1. It was the 12th win of the year for Crystal Sphere ($15.80) who is trained by James Clouser Jr. for owner William Emmons. Billy Davis Jr. and Ray Fisher Jr. were the top reinsmen on Friday, each winning three races on the card. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday evening (Nov. 17) at 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs    

Plainville, MA --- With only five racing days left in the 2018 Plainridge Park meeting, this was the second-to-last Thursday (Nov. 15) trot-heavy card as the track will be dark on Thanksgiving. However solid efforts and fast times were still seen across the board from the diagonal-gaiters who competed this afternoon. In the $12,000 conditioned event for the 6-year-old and under group, Quicksilver Kemp (James Tomaso) watched from the rear before following cover on the outside from the half to the top of the stretch where he displayed his usual late-closing speed to win by a length in 1:58.1. It was the sixth win of the year for Quicksilver Kemp ($4.80) who has put together a stellar sophomore campaign. The 3-year-old son of Andover Hall has now earned $63,915 for his owner/trainer Joel Wheeler. Then the fastest miles of the day were registered in a pair of mid-level conditioned trots on the strength of surprising performances given under the cold and windy conditions of the day. In the first $8,500 split, Shorething Fashion (Nick Graffam) showed good foot leaving and a lot of heart finishing to out-battle L Dee's Yoyo Ma (Drew Campbell) to wire where he won in a sparkling 1:55.1. Shorething Fashion ($6.00) scored his fifth win of the year for owners Bob McHugh and Mike Eaton, who also does the training. And the second $8,500 contest went to Namesmuscle (Matt Athearn) who sat the perfect trip behind Bruizn (Drew Campbell) before pulling in the stretch to outmuscle that one at the wire and win by a neck in 1:55.3. It was also the fifth win of the year for Namesmuscle ($12.20) and owner William Phipps. Gretchen Athearn is the trainer. Driver Drew Campbell doubled on Thursday to lead all drivers for wins. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (Nov. 19) at 1 p.m. Next week Plainirdge will only race Monday and Tuesday and will be dark for the holiday on Thursday. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Batavia, NY --- After earning minor spoils in her three most recent outings, Kaitlyn Rae returned to her winning ways in the $9,500 fillies and mares Open Handicap harness racing pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday evening (Nov. 14). Kaitlyn Rae (Drew Monti) left with little opposition from Hey Kobe (Kevin Cummings) who was content to sit the pocket trip for the duration. Seeing no one coming, Monti tapped the brakes and strolled to the half in :59. That forced Susie's Delight (Ray Fisher Jr.) to pull first over for a bid that would fall short by the three-quarters. Heading into the final turn, Cummings tipped Hey Kobe to try and make a run. But after barely getting within a length, Kaitlyn Rae responded to a high-line and a couple taps of the shaft to pace away and win by a length in 1:56.1. It was the 61st career win and 13th victory of 2018 for Kaitlyn Rae ($6.30) who has now earned $71,021 for owner/trainer Riley Asher-Stalbaum. In the $8,800 distaff Open II, Tymal Luckynpink (Brad Jackson) doubled her pleasure by winning her second straight outing in gate to wire fashion in 1:57.3. The Ken and John Mc Keever-owned 7-year-old Camluck mare scored her seventh win of the year under the tutelage of trainer Brad Jackson. Drew Monti had the driving hat trick on Wednesday to lead all other reinsmen on the card. Besides the already mentioned Kaitlyn Rae, Monti also won with Scarlet n silk (1:59.1, $8.80) and Honey Booboolina (1:57, $8.10). With those three wins, Monti pulls into a first place tie with Kevin Cummings (who had two wins on Wednesday) for the dash driving title. Both drivers currently have 93 tallies this meet. There was no winner in the early Pick-5 on Wednesday and as a result, there is a $1,036 carry over and a guaranteed $3,000 pool for the early Pick-5 on Friday. This will be a part of the USTA Strategic Wagering Program and free program pages will be made available on the USTA site courtesy of Trackmaster starting on Thursday under the "Handicapping" tab. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday evening (Nov. 16) with post time for the first race set at 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Despite a substantial step up in class, Iyq Yqr held to script and went gate to wire to win the $11,000 Open Handicap harness racing pace on Saturday night (Nov. 10) at Batavia Downs. Iyq Yqr (Denny Bucceri) got away sharply off the gate, took the lead and rolled through the first two turns with no pressure at all. That came when Cool Like Fire (Billy Davis Jr.), who pulled at the three-eighths, drew alongside Iyq Yqr in front of the grandstand and tried to clear at that point. Bucceri then popped the plugs on Iyq Yqr and he responded to Cool Like Fire's charge and put him away before the three-quarter pole. As they headed into the final turn, Iyq Yqr opened up a clear advantage while trailing horses were bunching up for their stretch bids. But Bucceri was in the midst of a highly animated drive and Iyq Yqr responded to it down the lane to rebuff the late challenges of Cultural Paradise (Shawn McDonough) and In Runaway Bay (Kevin Cummings) to win in 1:57. It was the third straight victory at Batavia Downs for Iyq Yqr ($13.20) who is owned by the Blindswitch Racing Stable, Anthony Nicometo, Good Friends Racing Stable and Santo Farina. Jeff Amann trains the winner. In the $9,900 Open II co-feature, Go Collect N (Billy Davis Jr.) tripped out behind I'm So Handsome (Kevin Cummings) before pulling out by the three-quarters and taking a narrow lead at the head of the lane that he held to the wire where he won in 1:57.2. Go Collect N ($4.40) scored his eighth win of the year for owner William Emmons who has now deposited $85,501 this year on his behalf. Denny Bucceri led all drivers on Saturday scoring a Grand Slam on Saturday night. Besides winning the feature with Iyq Yqr, "The Oakfield Flash" Bucceri also won with R U Machin Me (1:57.1, $15.00), Michael's Victory (1:58.1, $3.60) and Ugly Betty (1:59.4, $38.60). Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 14) with post time for the first race at 5 p.m. By TIm Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

Batavia, NY --- When French-bred trotter Bioness last competed at Batavia Downs he won the $15,000 Schroeder Invitational trot in October. On Friday (Nov. 9) he stayed undefeated at the Genesee County oval by taking the $11,500 Open Handicap trotting feature under a slick drive by his young reinsman Hunter Oakes, over a very sloppy track. When the wings folded Bioness started the long trek from post seven to the front and gained that position by the quarter in :29.4. But the lead was short-lived as the local hot-trotter Lougazi (Ray Fisher Jr.) pulled at the three-eighths and rushed to the front by the half and grabbed the pylons into the second circuit. Southern Palms (Kevin Cummings) made the next move, pulling at the five-eighths and drawing near Lougazi as the race progressed through the third panel. The top two trotters battled around the last turn and into the stretch before a gap allowed Oakes to pull Bioness out of the pocket and jet between them. He was by Southern Palms and overtook Lougazi at the wire to win in 1:59.4 by one-half length. It was the fifth win of 2018 for Bioness ($2.70) who now has $107,438 on his card for the year. The 7-year-old altered son of Sam Bourbon is owned by the Northfork Racing Stable and is trained by Chris Oakes. For the 20-year-old Hunter Oakes, it was his fourth consecutive win in only five career drives and his first career victory at Batavia Downs in his Western New York homecoming. In the $8,800 Open II trot, Labatt Hanover (Shawn McDonough) sat third the whole mile before tipping three-wide off cover in the lane to catch Barn Winner (Ray Fisher Jr.) at the wire to win by a neck in 2:00.1. It was the second win in the last three starts for Labatt Hanover ($11.60) and owners Gary and Cynthia Saj. McDonough also does the training. There was no winner in the early Pick-5 wager on Friday so the $2,756 carry over will supplement a guaranteed $7,000 pool for the early Pick-5 wager when live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 10). This bet will be part of the USTA Strategic Wagering Program and as such, will offer free race pages for races one through five for Batavia Downs tomorrow courtesy of Trackmaster. These free pages can be downloaded at www.ustrotting.com under the "Handicapping" tab. Post time for the first race is 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Sportsmuffler remained the mare to beat in Western New York after scoring her second straight top class distaff pacing feature victory at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Nov. 7). Getting away fourth, Sportsmuffler (Billy Davis Jr.) watched as Machin Marley (Kevin Cummings) flew to the front and guided the field's fortunes to the half in a tepid :58.3. Shortly after that marker, Kruella pulled first-over and eventually took command of the pace by the three-quarter pole. With Machin Marley starting to lose touch, Davis, who was a boxed fourth, was able to sneak Sportsmuffler out and around the pack before going three-deep into the last turn. First drawing even with Kruella, Sportsmuffler then pulled away from everyone to win by three in 1:56.1. It was the ninth win of the year and 35th career victory for Sportsmuffler ($7.90) who is owned by Rose Campbell and trained by Steve Kiblin. Sportsmuffler has now earned $60,366 this year. In the co-featured $8,800 fillies and mares Open II, Hey Kobe (Billy Davis Jr.) led every step of the way going gate to wire and winning by two lengths in 1:56.4. The Mihajlo Zdjelar trained Hey Kobe ($12.00) scored her sixth win of the year for owner Keith Pinkowski. Billy Davis Jr. won both top events on Wednesday but he ended up with a driving Grand Slam as well. Besides the already mentioned Sportsmuffler and Hey Kobe, Davis also won with Sweet Kimmy (2:03.1, $6.70) and Gussy's Dragon (1:58.3, $43). With no winning ticket in the early Pick-5 wager on Wednesday, there is a $709 carry-over and a $2,000 guaranteed pool for the early Pick-5 at Batavia Downs when live racing resumes on Friday night (Nov. 9). The early Pick-5 is a 50-cent base wager that starts in race one and runs through race five. Post time for the first race on Friday is 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- After some early maneuvering, Lucky McTrucky got a perfect trip en route to winning the $10,500 Open Handicap pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 3). Cool Like Fire (Billy Davis Jr.) took the early lead but soon yielded it to Lucky McTrucky (Drew Monti) past the eighth pole. Then just before the quarter, Davis pulled Cool Like Fire and retook the lead once again. From there positions remained unchanged for the next half mile. After passing the three-quarters in 1:27, Cool Like Fire was in a very good spot and looked fresh legged on the point. But Monti, who had gotten the perfect trip, pulled Lucky McTrucky coming out of the final turn and pushed him hard towards the stretch drive. As they headed down the lane the horses were stride for stride in a good match race with Lucky McTrucky getting the advantage before the wire and won by a neck in 1:56.1. It was the 11th win of the year and 53rd victory of his career for Lucky McTrucky ($6.00) who has won $79,765 in 2018 for owner Tessa Roland. JD Perrin trains the winner. In the $9,900 Open II co-feature, Dark Horse (Ray FIsher Jr.) got away at the back of the pack and watched as Bahama Bay (Denny Bucceri) and Hardts Or Bettor (Drew Monti) battled hard on the front end past the half. Fisher tipped Dark Horse four-wide up the backstretch, took the lead in the final turn and pulled away to win by two in 1:56. It was the fifth win of the year for Dark Horse ($4.70) who is owned by VHF Racing and trained by Sabrina Cleavenger. Ray Fisher Jr. led all drivers on Saturday scoring three wins on the night. Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 7) with post time for the first race at 5 p.m. By TIm Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- After getting the perfect trip, Southern Palms had just enough at the wire to win the $8,800 Open II Handicap trotting feature at Batavia Downs on Friday evening (Nov. 2). The race played out quite simply: Barn Winner (Ray Fisher Jr.) went to the top and Southern Palms (Kevin Cummings) got the perfect pocket trip. After fisher cut fractions of :28.1 :58.2 and 1:28.2, Barn Winner rounded the last turn looking like the probable victor. But Cummings brought Southern Palms out for the stretch drive and after steady urging, nipped Barn Winner at the wire by a head in 1:58.3. Southern Palms registered his seventh win of 2018 for owner Mike Torcello who has now been enriched the sum of $57,991 by his gelding's performances this year. Western New York legend Gerry Sarama trains the winner. Sarama and Torcello also sent forth the winner of the $8,500 co-featured trot. Theresnoway (Jim McNeight Jr.) got away seven lengths behind the leading Striker Ace (Drew Monti) before pulling first-over past the half and rallying down the stretch to win by a length and upset the field at 14-1. Theresnoway ($31.80) also got his seventh win of the year, breaking a long drought since his last score on August 17. Kevin Cummings led all drivers on Friday night winning three races on the card. Cummings is now in sole possession of the dash win lead for the current Batavia Downs meet, sporting 88 wins so far. Drew Monti is second with 85 wins and did not visit the Purple Haze winner's circle at all on Friday. Racing resumes on Saturday night (Nov. 3) with post time set at 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- It was a dark and stormy night in Genesee County and the track was sloppy at best. But that didn't stop the top side-wheeling mare Sportsmuffler from out-dueling three rivals at the wire to win the $10,400 distaff pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Oct.30). After a two-week layoff, Sportsmuffler got away third while Kaitlyn Rae (Ray Fisher Jr.) drove to the front by the quarter and led the field to the half without opposition. This produced a very pedestrian :31 second quarter making Kaitlyn Rae look like a veritable lock. But there was a half to go and Sportsmuffler (Billy Davis Jr.) had different ideas and was the first to push the issue as they rolled up the backside. Kaitlyn Rae maintained her length advantage passing the three-quarters in 1:28.1, but her pursuers were poised to strike as Roll With Faith (Kevin Cummings) joined the fray another length behind Sportsmuffler. Coming off the far turn, Sportsmuffler was wearing down Kaitlyn Rae and Roll With Faith had tipped three-deep both of them. From the back of the pack, Kruella (Shawn McDonough) came out of nowhere and was flying down the middle of the track. As the race approached the wire, these four were strung across the lane in a tightening bunch, but it was Sportsmuffler getting her head in front at the line to win in 1:57.3. It was the eighth win of 2018 for Sportsmuffler ($8.80) who has now earned $55,166 for owner Rose Campbell. Steve Kiblin trains the winner. In the $8,500 fillies and mares conditioned under card, Susie's Delight (Ray Fisher Jr.) unleashed a furious stretch drive to catch A Crafty Lady (Drew Monti) who looked like she was home, to win in 1:57.4. Susie's Delight ($16.60) has now won three of her last four starts and five on the year for owner Swift Racing Stable. Ryan Swift does the training. Four drivers won all 10 races on Wednesday led by Billy Davis Jr. who had the Grand Slam. Kevin Cummings, Shawn McDonough and Ray Fisher Jr. all had two wins apiece. With no winner of the early Pick-5 wager on Wednesday, there will be a guaranteed $1,500 pool for that wager when racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday evening (Nov. 2) Post time is 6 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Big moves and strong drives couldn't separate the top two pacers in western New York this week as Lucky McTrucky and In Runaway Bay N hit the wire at the same time in the $11,000 Open Handicap pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Oct. 27). It took a quarter of a mile but Lucky McTrucky (Drew Monti) finally got to the front and settled in for the mile. The outer flow came early at the three-eighths bringing Upfront Countryboy (Billy Davis Jr.) and In Runaway Bay N (Kevin Cummings) one-two at the half. Cummings swung In Runaway Bay N three-wide as soon as they hit the backstretch and set his sights on the leader. By the three-quarters In Runaway Bay N took the front on the outside by a neck over Lucky McTrucky and he appeared to be going right by in the last turn. But Monti worked Lucky McTrucky hard and he responded by getting back the lead and had a clear length advantage at the top of the stretch. Cummings got after In Runaway Bay N with right-handed urging and he again drew even with Lucky McTrucky. They paced together all the way to the wire and the camera could not separate them under the light where they finished in a dead heat in 1:56.3, only a head in front of Dark Horse (Ray Fisher Jr.) who brushed up the pylons late. It was the 10th win of the year for Lucky McTrucky ($3.30) who is owned by Tessa Roland and the seventh win of the year for In Runaway Bay N ($5.60) who is owned by Mark Jakubik. Billy Davis Jr. led all drivers on Saturday scoring three wins on the night. Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Oct. 31) with post time for the first race at 5 p.m. By TIm Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

Batavia, NY --- There is a new sheriff in town. Lougazi flexed his muscle again to defeat the best local stock and notch his third straight top class victory in the $11,000 Open Handicap trotting feature at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Oct. 26). Despite losing to Lougazi the last two starts, Empire Earl N (Jim Morrill Jr.) went off the post time favorite and went right to the front in the abbreviated field of six. WIth a single file behind, Empire Earl N floated to a :28.2 quarter and looked comfortable doing it. But breaktime was over at the three-eights when Lougazi (Ray FIsher Jr.), who got away last, pulled first-over and started the rim trek towards the leader. As the race motored up the backstretch, Lougazi drew even with Empire Earl N at the three-quarters and the match race was on. Into the last turn Empire Earl N got a slight advantage as Lougazi sort of hung, while Fisher bided his time and saved his charge for the finish. When they straightened out the two were even again and both drivers were working hard. Heading towards the wire it was clear Lougazi was doing the better work and just edged past Empire Earl N under the light by one-half length in 1:57. It was the ninth win of the year, third in a row and fourth out of the last five for Lougazi ($5.90) who is owned by Mary Warriner. Ryan Swift trains the winner. The husband and wife, driver and trainer team of Fisher and Swift also copped the co-feature. The $8,800 Open II trot saw three lead changes occur by the quarter before Barn Winner (Ray Fisher Jr.) pulled from fourth at the three-eighths, took the lead up the back stretch and then held off a late-charging Jim Dandy (Jim McNeight Jr.) to win by a length in 1:58.1. It was the third win in 15 starts this year for Barn Winner ($5.30) who is owned by Tanah Merah Farms and the Swift Racing Stable. As has been the case so many times this meet, the early Pick-5 was not hit on Friday and as a result, there is a $1,839 carry over and a $4,000 guaranteed pool for the early Pick-5 on Saturday night (Oct. 27). That wager will be a part of the USTA Strategic Wagering program with free past performance pages made available through Trackmaster and the USTA. You can download those by clicking the "Handicapping" tab at www.ustrotting.com . The Pick-5 is a 50-cent base wager that begins in race one and runs through race five. There is no consolation payoff, meaning if no one selects all five winners, the entire pool (minus takeout) will be carried over once again. Post time for the first race at Batavia Downs on Saturday evening is 6 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs      

Batavia, NY --- Joseph R. Carrubba, 60, of Oakfield, died Oct. 24, 2018 at Rochester General Hospital following a lengthy illness. He was born June 11, 1958, in Batavia, the son of the late Samuel and Patricia (Geitner) Carrubba. Mr. Carrubba was born into a harness racing family as his father Sam raced a stable at Batavia Downs. He got his first driver's license at age seventeen and made his first pari-mutuel starts in 1977. His brother Chris would also start to drive shortly after and it wasn't long before they both competed on the track regularly. For 39 years, Mr. Carrubba was a regular on the Western New York circuit along with occasionally shipping to race at other tracks in the state. Some of his early driving success and notoriety came while teaming pacers The Butler GB and Slickster, who both had a run of success in the early 1980's. He later went on to own, train or drive such horses as High Sticker, Pelham Midnight, Nialoma, Patty Spencer, Billy Yards, Red Whiz, Valley Duke, Wanna Rock N Roll and Sportsmuffler. Mr. Carrubba drove 223 career winners that earned $471,346 in purses. Turning mostly to training later in his career, he also conditioned another 229 victors who bankrolled $700,178 as well. Whether at the race track or away from racing, Mr. Carrubba always had a wonderful sense of humor and a deep love of his family. Surviving are his children, Michael (Amanda Benson) Carrubba, Erik Carrubba and Tiffany Carrubba; siblings, Christopher Carrubba, Mary (Denny) Bucceri, Rose (Steven Kiblin) Campbell and Georgeann Carrubba along with many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews and cousins. The Carrubba family will be present from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday Oct. 28, 2018 at the Michael S. Tomaszewski Funeral & Cremation Chapel, 4120 West Main Street Road Batavia, New York 14020 where a Service of Remembrance will begin at 5 p.m. Mr. Carrubba will be laid to rest in St. Joseph's Cemetery in Batavia, NY. In lieu of flowers, memorials in his memory are suggested to the family. Please share your words of comfort with Mr. Carrubba's family at www.tomaszewskifh.com . By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs      

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