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The field is set for Wednesday's Ahlsell Legends at Solvalla. Ten harness racing legends will contest the title over 2140 meters for 100,000SEK first money. John Campbell represents the US and Heinz Wewering, the world's leading dash-winning driver, represents Germany and they will battle many of the all-time greats from throughout Europe.  Ahlsell Legends is being held for the second time and the drivers are all legendary horsemen from Europe and the United States; several of them don’t drive in races anymore. Campbell will compete against Stig H. Johansson, Jean Pierre Dubois, Heinz Wewering, Berndt Lindstedt and several others. During his visit to Sweden, Campbell will have the opportunity to meet 30-year-old Mack Lobell, with whom he won the Elitlopp at Solvalla in 1988. Here is the field in post position order: 1. Perfect Power, John Campbell 2. Oliver Kronos, Olle Goop 3. OP's Flirt, Stig H. Johansson 4. Gitano, Lennart Forsgren 5. Val d'Amour, Erik Berglof 6. Costatantisoldi, Berndt Lindstedt 7. Need To Speed, Thomas Nilsson 8. Checco Boko, Helen A. Johansson 9. Vici Lane, Giancarlo Baldi 10. Renate Bowl, Heinz Wewering by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com  

Archangel's world-record 1:50 performance in last week's John Cashman Jr. Memorial eliminations might have surprised some observers, but not his driver, Yannick Gingras. "I kind of thought it was coming," Gingras said. "He's had a couple miles where he's shown that kind of brilliance, but he was unlucky." The 5-year-old trotter, who sat out last season because of stallion duty, is the 4-1 second choice in Saturday's $300,650 Cashman Memorial final. The Cashman, formerly called the Nat Ray, is for older trotters and has attracted a star-studded field that includes world champion Sebastian K, two-time Dan Patch Award winner Market Share, and numerous other stakes winners. Sebastian K, who won his Cashman elim in 1:51, is the 3-5 morning line favorite for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. Sebastian K, an 8-year-old standout from Sweden who is in his first season of racing in North America, holds the record for history's fastest mile thanks to his 1:49 victory in June at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. Archangel's 1:50 mile is the fastest ever on a one-mile oval, breaking the record of 1:50.1 that was shared by Donato Hanover, Muscle Hill, Chapter Seven, Giant Diablo, Lucky Jim, and Sebastian K. The 1:49 mile by Sebastian K in the Sun Invitational at Pocono Downs came on a five-eighths-mile track. Archangel was second to Sebastian K on the final turn of that race, but went off stride and finished seventh. "He was going to trot 1:49 a few weeks ago at Pocono if he didn't make a break," Gingras said. "Around the last turn he just overtrotted a little bit, but I still had the earplugs in. Ake was already driving on his and I had trot behind him. Whether I would have gone by or not, we'll never know, and the record is his. But my horse was going to trot 1:49 too." Archangel entered his Cashman elimination off a 10th-place finish in the Maple Leaf Trot, where he went off stride early in the race. Gingras was not the driver in Canada because he was racing Foiled Again at Northfield in the Battle of Lake Erie. "He's a little bit of a tricky horse, you need to know him, and unfortunately he made a break," Gingras said. "He's a little bit grabby. You've got to know him a little bit. Sometimes he'll throw in a funny step, he's got those little quirks about him, but once you know him he's pretty good." Archangel, trained by Ron Burke for owners Alan Hainsworth's Legendary Standardbred Farm and Clare Semer, has won two of 10 races this year and 16 of 41 in his career while earning $1.02 million. His top win came in the 2012 Yonkers Trot. He has two wins, two seconds and a third in his last seven starts. "He's a horse that didn't race for a full year, so you know it's going to take him six, seven, eight, nine starts to get going," Gingras said. "He was trotting a little further in the stretch each week, so I thought he was going in the right direction. Hopefully he keeps going forward from here on out. I don't think you've seen the bottom of him yet." The Cashman Memorial is part of a stakes-filled card on Saturday, which also includes the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old female trotters and the $1 million Hambletonian for 3-year-old trotters. The Cashman, Oaks, and Hambletonian will air during Saturday's national telecast, which begins at 4 p.m. on CBS Sports Network. Following is the Cashman field in post order with drivers, trainers and morning line: 1. Sebastian K, Ake Svanstedt, Ake Svanstedt, 3-5; 2. Your So Vain, Mike Lachance, Ake Svanstedt, 20-1; 3. Arch Madness, Brian Sears, Trond Smedshammer, 20-1; 4. Archangel, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 4-1; 5. Uncle Peter, David Miller, Jimmy Takter, 15-1; 6. Appomattox, Brett Miller, Liisa Vatanen, 50-1; 7. Mister Herbie, John Campbell, Mark Ford, 20-1; 8. Intimidate, Ron Pierce, Luc Blais, 8-1; 9. Market Share, Tim Tetrick, Linda Toscano, 9-2; 10. Sevruga, George Brennan, Kevin Carr, 50-1. HARNESS RACING NOTEBOOK John Campbell will try to extend his record for Hambletonian wins to seven when he drives Nuncio in Saturday's 89th edition of the trotting classic. The Hall of Famer has a legitimate chance to win the race, even with prohibitive favorite Father Patrick in the field, but that's not what makes Campbell most happy. "I'm just so happy anytime I get the chance to be part of the Hambletonian," said Campbell, who has raced in every Hambletonian final but two since 1983. "When you have a horse that figures in it, that makes it more special, no question about it, but it's the best we have to offer and I never take it for granted." Nuncio is the only horse to beat Father Patrick, on July 12, 2013. Father Patrick has won 15 consecutive races since then, but drew the unenviable No. 10 post for Saturday's Hambletonian. No horse has ever won a Hambletonian final from post 10. "I'm happy with the draw; it gives me options going out of the gate," Campbell said. "I'm going to be forwardly placed, or try to be, there's no question about that. I think the unknown is how many underneath me and on the outside are going to leave. I think there's going to be a lot of action in the first quarter of the mile, it just depends how hot that is and how many are involved." Nuncio, a son of Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle owned by Stefan Melander's Stall TZ stable, has won 10 of 17 career races and never finished worse than second. The colt is trained by Jimmy Takter, who also is the trainer of Father Patrick and Hambletonian contender Trixton. Six of Nuncio's seven runner-up finishes have come against Father Patrick. "I know Nuncio is going into the race in good shape," Campbell said. "He's raced well every start of his life and I don't expect that to change. Father Patrick, believe me, he's earned all the accolades he's gotten. His 15-race win streak is incredible. But at the same time, I'm going to try to upset him on Saturday. "You have to race against the competition, whatever it is that year. [Nuncio] ran into a horse that has a chance to be one of the all-time greats. But I'm hoping he doesn't add the Hambletonian to his resume." Nuncio will try to give Melander his second Hambletonian victory. He was the owner, trainer and driver of 2001 winner Scarlet Knight. Part of Nuncio's success this year is because the horse has been able to relax in races. Last season, Nuncio led at the half-mile point in eight of 10 starts. This year, it's only happened once in seven races. "He wouldn't be in the Hambletonian if it wasn't for the job that Jimmy did over the winter," Campbell said. "When he came back, we made a special effort to keep him quiet and race him from off the pace and make sure he didn't get into the same mode as last year. "Last year was just him being very talented and he got so exuberant that I couldn't rate him during the middle part of the mile and it cost him a couple of races. Now he's to the point where I can leave hard with him and still control him, and that's vital. If he wasn't that way going into the Hambletonian, it would compromise his chances dramatically." Aaron Merriman will get his first drive in the Hambletonian on Saturday. He is North America's leading driver in wins, with 452. Over the past 55 years, these are the drivers who ended the season No. 1 in wins and also drove in the Hambletonian final that same year: Dave Palone (2012, Stormin Normand, and 1999, Cherry Hills), Jody Jamieson (2009, Federal Flex), Tim Tetrick (2007, Pampered Princess), and Jack Moiseyev (1991, Giant Victory). Moiseyev is the only driver to win the Hambletonian in the same year he was No. 1. Merriman, a 36-year-old Ohio native with nearly 6,600 lifetime wins, will drive 50-1 longshot Il Sogno Dream in the Hambletonian. The horse is owned by Bill Manes, Dan Manes, Leonard Christopher and Randy Christopher. He is trained by Chris Beaver. "It doesn't matter what my odds are, it's an unbelievable opportunity and I'm just really excited," Merriman said. "I feel blessed I'm even involved in the race day. Even if I was the presenter of a trophy, I'd be happy. It's the premier event in harness racing and I'm very excited." Of the 11 drivers in this year's Hambletonian, four have won the race at least once previously. John Campbell (Nuncio) holds the record with six triumphs, followed by Ron Pierce (Royal Ice) with three, Brian Sears (Harper Blue Chip) two, and Tim Tetrick (Don Dorado) one. Sears won last year's Hambletonian with Royalty For Life. If he wins again this season, he will be the first driver to win the Hambletonian in back-to-back years since John Campbell in 1987-88. Jimmy Takter and Trond Smedshammer are the only trainers in this year's Hambletonian with previous victories. Takter - who sends out favorites Father Patrick, Nuncio and Trixton - won in 2010 with Muscle Massive and 1997 with Malabar Man. Smedshammer, who trains Royal Ice, won in 2004 with Windsong's Legacy. Trainer Nancy Johansson is making her first start in the Hambletonian, with Resolve, but she is no stranger to the race. She is the daughter of two-time winning trainer Jimmy Takter and was the caretaker of the 2010 Hambletonian winner, Muscle Massive. "That helps me tons," Johansson said. "I don't really feel stressed out. I think a lot of people in my situation would be a little more stressed out, but I kind of expect to be here because we were always there working for my dad. And most of the times, I took care of those horses. "There's a lot of pressure to take care of a good horse. I always say caretakers are so underrated because every day that horse is their charge. It's your job to make sure they don't get hurt, or if they're sick you need to notice in time so something can be done. I feel like I've had that pressure a lot before. I've seen my dad deal with the pressure. It doesn't really bother me because I'm used to it." Howard Taylor, who is among the owners of 20-1 Hambletonian longshot Doncango, never expected to have a starter in this year's race. Doncango has raced only once this year, winning on July 25. "I have tickets for the Billy Joel concert Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center, so I had to scramble to rearrange my plans," Taylor said with a laugh. "In about February or so, [Doncango] got injured. We have just been rehabbing him and bringing him back slowly and he got a late start. "We have a lot of year left and [trainer Ake Svanstedt] thinks he'll be heard from for the rest of the year. But I was a little surprised that he entered the horse in the Hambletonian." Taylor has had two previous starters in the Hambletonian. He is looking for his first win. "It would be a dream," Taylor said about Doncango winning. "It would be a shock, but it would be a dream." Ron Pierce can tie Berndt Lindstedt for most Hambletonian Oaks wins by a driver, with four, if he guides Shake It Cerry to victory Saturday. She is trained by Jimmy Takter, who with a triumph would move into sole possession of second place in trainer wins. Takter is tied with Glen Garnsey with three Oaks titles. Jan Johnson leads the way with six. Shake It Cerry, who has won six of seven races this year and was the 2013 Dan Patch Award winner for best 2-year-old female trotter, is the 5-2 second choice on the morning line. "She's good," Takter said earlier in the week. "It was good we didn't have to extend her too much [in the Oaks prep, a 1:54.4 win]. The Hambletonian Oaks won't go like that. The race next week, they're going to mix it up a little bit. "I think she's the best one. The only time she got defeated, she had a bad trip. She's sound, everything is good with her. She is ready to go a big mile. She'll take [Pierce] home. She's not known to give up in the stretch." Prior to this Saturday, trainer Julie Miller's only Hambletonian Oaks starter was 90-1 longshot Timelesswinner Two in 2009. Timelesswinner Two finished eighth. This year, she is sending out three fillies in the Oaks including morning line favorite Designed To Be. Starting from post one with driver Brian Sears, Designed To Be has won two of four starts this year. She was second to Shake It Cerry, who drew post 11 in the Oaks, in last week's prep. "She's had a little bit of traffic trouble her last two starts," Miller said. "I give a lot of credit to Brian. He knows my filly and he's been able to control her during the pedestrian second quarters we've been going. I'm excited for [the final]. Obviously, I'd like to see them go a little more [early fractions] in the race. We'll see how it plays out. I have all the confidence in the world in Brian and Designed To Be." Miller's other starters in the Oaks are 12-1 Take The Money and 20-1 Cee Bee Yes. "Take The Money had a nice win in the Reynolds [on July 19]," Miller said. "She proved to me that she should be in here. She seems to be a horse that's better with a week off in between starts. So that's why we [skipped the Oaks prep and] gave her the week off rather than go three weeks in a row. "[Cee Bee Yes] is my sleeper. She does her job, she's a sweetheart, and Marcus [Miller] gets along with her well. If they mix it up, I think she can pick up the pieces." Saturday's card, which begins at noon, features the Hambletonian Day returns of 2012 Hambletonian winner Market Share and 2013 Hambletonian Oaks winner Bee A Magician. Bee A Magician, the 2013 Horse of the Year, is the 4-5 favorite in the $52,000 Ima Lula Series final for 4-year-old female trotters. Market Share is the 9-2 third choice in the $300,650 John Cashman Jr. Memorial for older trotters. Here is a look at the morning line choices for Hambletonian Day's top races. $52,000 Ima Lula: Bee A Magician 4-5, Classic Martine 7-5, Handover Belle 8-1. $100,000 Miss New Jersey: Gettingreadytoroll 2-1, Act Now 3-1, Blixtra 9-2. $225,000 New Jersey Classic: Doo Wop Hanover 9-5, Western Vintage 5-2, Bushwacker 9-2. $257,700 U.S. Pacing Championship: Sweet Lou 4-5, Captaintreacherous 7-2, Thinking Out Loud 6-1. $352,050 Merrie Annabelle: Mission Brief 4-5, Lock Down Lindy 3-1, Gatka Hanover 5-1. $355,500 Peter Haughton Memorial: Guess Whos Back 2-1, Canepa Hanover 5-2, Centurion ATM 3-1. $50,000 Townsend Ackerman: Amped Up Hanover 8-5, Southwind Poseidon 7-2, Marathon Man 9-2. $50,000 Townsend Ackerman: Outburst 3-1, Sumatra 7-2, Hillustrious 9-2. $75,000 Vincennes: Master Of Law 3-1, Southwind Pepino 7-2, D'Orsay 9-2. $300,650 John Cashman Jr. Memorial: Sebastian K 3-5, Archangel 4-1, Market Share 9-2. $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks: Designed To Be 2-1, Shake It Cerry 5-2, Heaven's Door 9-2. $1 million Hambletonian: Father Patrick 4-5, Trixton 7-2, Nuncio 9-2. $177,750 Lady Liberty: Rocklamation 5-2, Drop The Ball 3-1, Somwherovrarainbow 7-2. by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications  

With the resignation of John Berry from the US Harness Writers Association's Hall of Fame Screening Committee USHWA president Chris Tully has appointed Shawn Wiles to replace Mr. Berry. Due to personal family issues, Mr. Berry could not make it to Goshen this weekend. Wiles, a vice president and longtime member of the Monticello- Goshen Chapter USHWA and general manager of Monticello Casino and Raceway is a current USTA District 8 Director as well as second VP of USHWA National and he has a long history in the sport. His career in harness racing started in the backstretch of Monticello Raceway during the 1970s where he worked as a groom for Richard Sturgis, Robert Camper and Jim Grundy. He then went on in search of a Grand Circuit stable to work for and found success with the famed trotting specialists of Continental Farms under the guidance of Hakan Wallner, Hall of Famer Berndt Lindstedt, and Jan Johnson. Wiles was the first American second- trainer to work for the famed Scandinavian trotting experts from 1980-1986. During his tenure as a groom he rubbed many top performers, most notably the crack stakes filly Dominant, and then worked for Castleton Farms from 1986-1988. Wiles joined Monticello Raceway in 1996, working under John Manzi in publicity and Bill Sullivan in operations. Wiles was initially promoted to assistant GM of Monticello Casino and Raceway, and lately promoted to General Manager of the entire facility. He was recently lauded by the local scribes on his tough stance on racing integrity. Wiles is also on various other USHWA committees including the Integrity Committee, Location Committee, and the Fan Award Committee. "I am honored to be part of the process that honors the legends of Harness Racing," Wiles said referring to his recent appointment to the Hall of Fame Screening Committee. by John Manzi, for Monticello Raceway  

Holger Ehlert trained Nesta Effe returns to Vermo. Fineland on Saturday May 10 to defend last year's Finlandia AJO title. The Gr. I International UET Masters Series event will be contested over 1609 meters autostart for purse of 190,000 euros. Three career winners of over 1 million euros are in the lineup (Nesta Effe, Sanity and Univers de Pan).Ten quality performers will be at the start: Juliano Rags, Noralf Braekken, Norway Oasis Bi, Claes Svensson, Italy Nesta Effe, Roberto Vecchione, Italy Sanity, Johnny Takter, Sweden Quite An Avenger, Marrku Nieminen, Finland Univers de Pan, Philippe Daugeard, France Blue Porsche, Likka Nurmonen, USA Prussia, Pietro Gubellini, Italy Paladin Bleu, Joseph Verbeeck, France Air Gunner, Kari Rosimo, Finland Nesta Effe Replay of the 2013 event and post-race festivities are shown by link below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuZih-ToflI#t=362 The 2014 field at Helsinki shapes up as wide-open affair. Oasis Bi has 12 career wins in 35 starts for 3,263,264SEK. The six year-old son of Toss Out-Up Front JM-Self Possessed has posted two wins in four starts this year against solid foes. Sanity (8g Love You-Flash Light-Mack Lobell) has also started 2014 effectively with a 3-2-0 slate in five starts including success in France. He now has 30 wins from 69 appearances for earnings of 9,723,176SEK. Local player Air Gunner (6g Ray Gun-Dame Gallant-Meadow Gallant) has also begun the season well with three wins, the last two in 1.11.7kr for driver Kari Rosimo. Winners of the Finlandia include legends of the trotting wars internationally (e.g., Commander Crowe, SJ's Photo, Copiad, Davidia Hanover, Napoletano, Grade's Singing and Ideal du Gazeau). The race record 1.10.6kr was set in 2010 by Quarcio du Chene reined by Bjorn Goop. Winners of Finlandia-Ajo Year Horse Driver Trainer Winning horse's native country Winning time 2013 Nesta Effe Roberto Vecchione Holger Ehlert  Italy 1:10.9 2012 Sebastian K Björn Goop Björn Goop  Sweden 1:11.1 2011 Commander Crowe Jean-Michel Bazire Fabrice Souloy  Sweden 1:13.7 2010 Quarcio du Chene Björn Goop Björn Goop  France 1:10.6 2009 Igor Font Jean-Michel Bazire Fabrice Souloy  France 1:11.8 2008 Oiseau de Feux Jean-Michel Bazire Fabrice Souloy  France 1:11.3 2007 Opal Viking Jorma Kontio Nils Enqvist  Sweden 1:10.8 2006 Hot Shot Knick Thomas Uhrberg Kari Lähdekorpi  Sweden 1:11.5 2005 Kart de Baudrairie Jean-Michel Bazire Franck Leblanc  France 1:12.2 2004 Rotation Stig H. Johansson Stig H. Johansson  United States 1:12.5 2003 Kiwi Joseph Verbeeck Fabrice Souloy  France 1:12.0 2002 H.P. Paque Trond Smedshammer Trond Smedshammer  United States 1:11.7 2001 B.W.T. Magic Ahti Antti-Roiko Matti Salmi  Finland 1:11.2 2000 Giesolo de Lou Jean-Etienne Dubois Jean-Etienne Dubois  France 1:11.2 1999 Giesolo de Lou Pierre Vercruysse Jean-Etienne Dubois  France 1:11.6 1998 Dryade des Bois Joseph Verbeeck Jean-Baptiste Bossuet  France 1:12.5 1997 Zoogin Åke Svanstedt Åke Svanstedt  Sweden 1:12.1 1996 Isla J. Brave Aki Antti-Roiko Petri Klemola  Finland 1:12.5 1995 SJ's Photo David Wade David Wade  United States 1:13.3 1994 Copiad Erik Berglöf Erik Berglöf  Sweden 1:12.5 1993 Born Quick Tommy Hanné Tommy Hanné  Finland 1:12.1 1992 Otto-Mani Antti Teivainen Esa Aronen  Finland 1:13.7 1991 Atas Fighter L. Torbjörn Jansson Torbjörn Jansson  Sweden 1:13.5 1990 Florida Jewel William Fahy John Holloway  United States 1:13.3 1989 Napoletano Stig H. Johansson Stig Engberg  United States 1:12.9 1988 Napoletano Stig H. Johansson Stig Engberg  United States 1:14.1 1987 Grades Singing Olle Goop Olle Goop  United States 1:14.1 1986 Davidia Hanover Jorma Kontio Per Eriksson  United States 1:14.7 1985 Keystone Patton Jorma Kontio Antti Savolainen  United States 1:14.1 1984 Shane T. Hanover Per Henriksen Per Henriksen  United States 1:14.9 1983 Speedy Magnus Olle Goop Olle Goop  Sweden 1:13.2 1982 Dartster F. Olle Hedin Olle Hedin  Sweden 1:13.9 1981 Ideal du Gazeau Eugene Lefevre Eugene Lefevre  France 1:14.3 1980 Ejakval Jean-Claude David Jean-Claude David  France 1:15.6 by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

European trotting fans will be treated this weekend (Sunday May 11) to Charlottenlund’s Broline Copenhagen Cup in Demark. This Gr. I International UET Masters Series test is a meaningful Elitloppet prep and contains contestants from Denmark, Sweden and the USA. Uncle Peter makes his initial European venture after arriving from USA today. Previous USA import Solvato has raced well lately as has Magic Tonight that will have Orjan Kihlstrom up for Roger Walmann. Start: Broline Copenhagen Cup (UET Trotting Masters Gr 1) 1.350.000 kroner ($227,000 US), 2011 meters auotstart 1) Uncle Peter (us) – David Miller – Jimmy Takter 2) Kash's Cantab (us) - Erik Adielsson – Stig H. Johansson 3) Mr Picolit (s) - Jorma Kontio – Raoul Engblom 4) Orali (dk) - Jeppe Juel – Jeppe Juel 5) Solvato (us) - Veijo Heiskanen – Veijo Heiskanen 6) Beckman (s) - Franck Nivard - Fabrice Souloy 7) Mosaique Face (s) - Lutfi Kolgjini – Lutfi Kolgjini 8) Harry Haythrow (s) - Peter Untersteiner – Johnny Johansson 9) Magic Tonight (us) - Örjan Kihlström – Roger Walmann 10) Caballion (s) - Björn Goop – Franck Leblanc Program pages for the Saturday Copenhagen Cup card can be viewed using links below: http://www.travbanen.dk/attachments/article/388/16-11MAJ14DEL1.pdf http://www.travbanen.dk/attachments/article/388/16-11MAJ14DEL2.pdf The Copenhagen Cup has a rich history, equine and human. The first three editions were won by the sport's legendary Charlie Mills driving Guy Bacon and Walter Dear (two wins). This pair were imported from the United States. Mills won again 29 years later with the equally legendary french mare Gelinotte. Winners of the Copenhagen Cup include many of the best in the history of the sport, including the late Moni Maker in 1998. Since Copenhagen Cup was introduced in 1975 there have been several  Danish victories including Hairos, Meadow Roland (three time winner), Legendary Lover K in 2002 and Wishing Stone in 2012. Dewayne Minor campaigned the last two in their successful US careers . The race record is held by the Italy’s Libeccio Griff , who scored in 1.10.7kr in 2011 for Bjorn Goop. Previous Winners Year Horse1 Driver Winning time 2013 Mr. Picolit Åke Svanstedt 1:11,7a 2012 Wishing Stone Jeppe Juel 1:11,3a 2011 Libeccio Grif Björn Goop 1:10,7a 2010 Nu Pagadi Erik Adielsson 1:11,7a 2009 Triton Sund Örjan Kihlström 1:12,8a 2008 Ghibellino Roberto Andreghetti 1:12,4a 2007 Kool du Caux Jean-Michel Bazire 1:12,0a 2006 Mara Bourbon Jean-Pierre Dubois 1:12,2a 2005 Steinlager Per-Oleg Midtfjeld 1:13,5a 2004 Revenue Lutfi Kolgjini 1:12,6a 2003 Gidde Palema Åke Svanstedt 1:13,5a 2002 Legendary Lover K Steen Juul 1:12,7a 2001 Victory Tilly Stig H. Johansson 1:13,4a 2000 Indian Silver Stig H. Johansson 1:12,8a 1999 Giesolo de Lou Jean-Etinne Dubois 1:13,5a 1998 Moni Maker Wally Hennessy 1:12,6a 1997 Zoogin Åke Svanstedt 1:14,1a 1996 Triple T Storm Joseph Verbeeck 1:14,1a 1995 S J's Photo David Wade 1:12,8a 1994 Bolets Igor David Wade 1:13,2a 1993 Campo Ass Wilhelm Paal 1:14,6a 1992 Bravo Sund Jorma Kontio 1:14,9a 1991 Glass Hanover Henning Beckemeyer 1:14,5a 1990 Meadow Roland Preben Kjærsgaard 1:13,5a 1989 Meadow Roland Preben Kjærsgaard 1:14,6a 1988 Meadow Roland Preben Kjærsgaard 1:14,4a 1987 Hairos John K. Hansen 1:14,0a 1986 Junior Lobell John K. Hansen 1:13,6a 1985 Minou du Donjon Olle Goop 1:14,0a 1984 Lutin d'Isigny Jean-Paul Andree 1:13,8a 1983 E.O. Brunn Bo W. Takter 1:13,9a 1982 Ideal du Gazeau Eugene Lefevre 1:14,0a 1981 Jorky Leopold Verroken 1:16,3a 1980 Ideal du Gazeau Eugene Lefevre 1:14,6a 1979 Charme Asserdal Heikki Korpi 1:15,5a 1978 Pershing Berndt Lindstedt 1:14,2a 1977 Keystone Pioneer William Haughton 1:15,0a 1976 Wiretapper Sören Nordin 1:17,2a 1975 Ritha Lyngholm Olle Lindquist 1:18,0a 1966 Roquepine Jean-René Gougeon 1:16,9a 1964 Elaine Rodney Jean-René Gougeon 1:15,4a 1962 Eidelstedter Johannes Frömming 1:21,0 1961 Rulle Rappson Sören Nordin 1:21,4 1960 Hairos II Willem Geersen 1:17,0a 1959 Jens Protector Trygve Diskerud 1:16,3a 1958 Adept Kurt Mattson 1:21,5 1957 Gelinotte Charlie Mills 1:18,7 1952 Frances Bulwark Sören Nordin 1:22,3 1951 Rollo Ragnar Thorngren 1:17,8 1949 Presidenten Casino The Great Folke Bengtsson Fredi Sølberg 1:23,1 1:22,7 1948 Harvest Druien Niels Jan Koster 1:23,8 1946 Future Aage Kristoffersen 1:19,9 1939 Sonny Diamond Niels Jan Koster 1:21,1 1938 Sir Walter Scott Calle Schoug 1:22,1 1932 Walter Dear Charlie Mills 1:19,6 1931 Walter Dear Charlie Mills 1:18,4 1928 Guy Bacon Charlie Mills 1:19,4 1 Country of owner (Wikipedia chart above) One of the most eventful, in this reporters opinion, Copenhagen Cup races was the 2006 edition when parked out Mara Bourbon gained advantage just before the line and held off charging Giant Diablo for the victory. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qloX5wLbL8 - 2006 Copenhagen Cup by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

The Gran Premio Lotteria is Italy's greatest harness race, held every year since 1951 at Agnano in Naples, and will be held this year on Sunday May 4. The Lotteria is regarded as one of the four Grand Slam events of Europe and is a Group One Intnernational, eEligible to all horses 4YO and over, and raced in three elimination heats and a final later the same day, raced over 1,600 meters (0.99 mile) of Agnano's left handed 1000m track. The purse this year is 506 000 euros ($702,000 US), with heats worth 20,900e and the final carrying a purse of 443,300e. Three time winner of the race, Varenne is also the holder of the fastest winning time of 1:10.8, which he set in 2002. Here are some other facts on Italy's Grand Slam, Leading horses 3 - Birbone (1952, 1953, 1955) 3 - Tornese (1957, 1958, 1962) 3 - Une de Mai (1969, 1970, 1971) 3 - Varenne (2000, 2001, 2002) 2 - The Last Hurrah (1978, 1979) 2 - Mack Grace SM (2012,2013) Leading Sires. 3 - Nevele Pride (Contingent Fee, Evita Broline, Classy Rogue) 2 - Ayres (Top Hanover, The Last Hurrah) 2 - Pharaon (Tornese, Nievo) 2 - Quick Pay (The Onion, Victory Tilly) 2 - Speedy Crown (Evann C., Embassy Lobell) Fastest winning times. Auto start Varenne (2002)[3] 1.10.8 (km rate) Volt start (1951, 1952, 1956 Gelinotte (1956)[3] 1.17.8 (km rate) Leading Trainers 5 - Vivaldo Baldi (1952, 1953, 1955, 1978, 1979) 4 - Sergio Brighenti (1957, 1958, 1962, 1963) 4 - Jean-Rene Gougeon (1969, 1970, 1971, 1976) 4 - Stig H. Johansson (1984, 1991, 2003, 2005) 3 - Jori Turja (2000, 2001, 2002) Leading Drivers 5 - Vivaldo Baldi (1952, 1953, 1955, 1978, 1979) 5 - Jean-Rene Gougeon (1967, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1976) 4 - Stig H. Johansson (1984, 1991, 2003, 2005) 3 - Sergio Brighenti (1958, 1962, 1963) 3 - Giampaolo Minnucci (2000, 2001, 2002) Gran Premio Lotteria Winners 2013 Mack Grace SM Roberto Andreghetti Lucio Colletti Italy 1.11.3 2012 Mack Grace SM Roberto Andreghetti Lucio Colletti Italy 1.11.8 2011 Libeccio Grif Marco Smorgon Marco Smorgon Italy 1.12.8 2010 Italiano Gaetano Di Nardo Enrico Bellei Italy 1.11.3 2009 Island Effe Pietro Gubellini Edoardo Gubellini Italy 1.12.9 2008 Gambling Bi Jean-Michel Bazire Fabrice Souloy Italy 1.11.3 2007 Exploit Caf Jean-Michel Bazire Fabrice Souloy Italy 1.12.0 2006 Malabar Circle Ãs  Andrea Guzzinati Jerry Riordan Sweden 1.12.1 2005 Digger Crown Stig H. Johansson Stig H. Johansson Sweden 1.13.0 2004 Legendary Lover K. Enrico Bellei Gunnar Christiansen United States 1.12.5 2003 Victory Tilly Stig H. Johansson Stig H. Johansson Sweden 1.12.7 2002 Varenne Giampaolo Minucci Jori Turja Italy 1.10.8 2001 Varenne Giampaolo Minucci Jori Turja Italy 1.12.6 2000 Varenne Giampaolo Minucci Jori Turja Italy 1.12.4 1999 Remington Crown Joseph Verbeeck Jan Kruithof Sweden 1.11.1 1998 Kramer Boy Johnny Takter Johnny Takter Sweden 1.14.1 1997 Wesgate Crown Enrico Bellei Raz Mackenzie United States 1.12.4 1996 Crowning Classic Mauro Baroncini Mauro Baroncini United States 1.12.4 1995 Ina Scot Helen A. Johansson Kjell P. Dahlström Sweden 1.13.1 1994 Uconn Don Andrea Baveresi Andrea Baveresi United States 1.13.7 1993 Embassy Lobell Wim Paal Wim Paal United States 1.12.8 1992 Bravur Sund Mauro Baroncini Mauro Baroncini Sweden 1.12.7 1991 Peace Corps Stig H. Johansson Stig H. Johansson United States 1.14.0 1990 Evann C. Björn Lindblom Björn Lindblom United States 1.12.9 1989 Hollyhurst Lorenzo Baldi Lorenzo Baldi United States 1.13.2 1988 Grades Singing Olle Goop Olle Goop United States 1.12.8 1987 Limbo Joe Vittorio Guzzinati Vittorio Guzzinati United States 1.13.9 1986 Classy Rogue William Casoli William Casoli United States 1.14.8 1985 Evita Broline Berndt Lindstedt Berndt Lindstedt Sweden 1.13.9 1984 The Onion Stig H. Johansson Stig H. Johansson Sweden 1.14.1 1983 Keystone Patriot Veijo Heiskanen Antti Savolainen United States 1.15.6 1982 Our Dream of Mite Eduardo Gubellini Eduardo Gubellini United States 1.14.7 1981 Contingent Fee Mario Rivara Mario Rivara United States 1.16.2 1980 Hillion Brillouard Philippe Allaire Philippe Allaire France 1.13.8 1979 The Last Hurrah Vivaldo Baldi Vivaldo Baldi United States 1.14.9 1978 The Last Hurrah Vivaldo Baldi Vivaldo Baldi United States 1.14.5 1977 Wayne Eden Anselmo Fontanesi Anselmo Fontanesi United States 1.14.7 1976 Bellino II Jean-Rene Gougeon Jean-Rene Gougeon France 1.15.2 1975 Dimitria Leopold Verroken Leopold Verroken France 1.16.1 1974 Top Hanover Gerhard Krüger Gerhard Krüger United States 1.17.7 1973 Lightning Larry Eduardo Gubellini Eduardo Gubellini United States 1.16.5 1972 Amyot Louis Sauvé Louis Sauvé France 1.16.8 1971 Une de Mai Jean-Rene Gougeon Jean-Rene Gougeon France 1.16.7 1970 Une de Mai Jean-Rene Gougeon Jean-Rene Gougeon France 1.16.6 1969 Une de Mai Jean-Rene Gougeon Jean-Rene Gougeon France 1.16.6 1968 Eileen Eden Johannes Frömming Johannes Frömming United States 1.16.5 1967 Roquepine Jean-Rene Gougeon Henri Levesque France 1.16.4 1966 Cheer Honey Gerhard Krüger Gerhard Krüger United States 1.16.7 1965 Elma Johannes Frömming Jonel Chyriacos France 1.16.5 1964 Hurst Hanover Giancarlo Baldi Giancarlo Baldi United States 1.16.7 1963 Behave Sergio Brighenti Sergio Brighenti United States 1.16.4 1962 Tornese Sergio Brighenti Sergio Brighenti Italy 1.16.8 1961 Kracovie Roger Vercruysse Roger Vercruysse France 1.17.0 1960 Nievo Ugo Bottoni Ugo Bottoni Italy 1.17.5 1959 Icare IV Walter Baroncini Walter Baroncini France 1.16.7 1958 Tornese Sergio Brighenti Sergio Brighenti Italy 1.17.9 1957 Tornese Mario Santi Sergio Brighenti Italy 1.18.5 1956 Gelinotte Charlie Mills Charlie Mills France 1.17.8 1955 Birbone Vivaldo Baldi Vivaldo Baldi Italy 1.18.6 1954 Saint Clair Oduardo Baldi Oduardo Baldi United States 1.19.4 1953 Birbone Vivaldo Baldi Vivaldo Baldi Italy 1.18.5 1952 Birbone Vivaldo Baldi Vivaldo Baldi Italy 1.18.6 1951 Bayard Ugo Bottoni Ugo Bottoni Italy 1.20.3 by David Sanders, for Harnesslink.com

At the recently completed national meetings of the United States Harness Writers Association (USHWA) Monticello Raceway's Shawn Wiles was elected vice president of the organization. President Steve Wolf ended his two year term at those meetings which then opened the position of second VP as other officers moved up the chairs. Wiles will now serve in his newly elected capacity for two years. Presently the general manager of the Monticello Raceway, Wiles has been a longtime member of the Monticello -Goshen Chapter USHWA and currently is the chapter's vice president. "I am excited to work with the present youthful USHWA Board," Wiles said. They are an extremely capable bunch of young men, who I can learn from." Wiles is referring to his newly elected president, Chris Tully and vice president, Tim Bojarski, both of whom moved up the chairs to their current two year positions. Wiles has long been a director of United States Trotting Association from District 8 where he now serves as the chairman of that district. His career in harness racing started in the backstretch of Monticello Raceway during the 1970s where he worked as a groom for Richard Sturgis, Robert Camper and Jim Grundy. He then went on in search of a Grand Circuit stable to work for and found success with the famed trotting specialists of Continental Farms under the guidance of Hakan Wallner, Hall of Famer Berndt Lindstedt, and Jan Johnson. Wiles was the first American second- trainer to work for the famed Scandinavian trotting experts from 1980-1986. During his tenure as a groom he rubbed many top performers, most notably the crack stakes filly Dominant, and then worked for Castleton Farms from 1986-1988. Wiles joined Monticello Raceway in 1996, working under John Manzi in publicity and Bill Sullivan in operations. Wiles was initially promoted to assistant GM of Monticello Casino and Raceway, and lately promoted to General Manager of the entire facility. He was recently lauded by the local scribes on his tough stance on racing integrity. Wiles is actively involved in many civic and community oriented endeavors. He is a past president, now trustee, of the Fallsburg Central School District Board of Education, past president of the Woodridge Housing Association, and a longtime AYSO soccer coach as well as vice president of the Monticello-Goshen Harness Writers Association, The proud parents of Brody , 19, and Samantha, 16, Wiles and his wife, Lisa, Superintendent of the Ellenville School District, reside in Woodridge, N.Y. by John Manzi, for Monticello Raceway  

Yesterday historic Pompano Park celebrated its 50th birthday. The harness racing dream of Frederick Van Lennep became reality in 1964, when it developed, opened, flourished and following his death in 1987, was managed by the late John A. Cashman, Jr. for the Van Lennep estate. They had many other assets including Lexington's famous Castleton Farm, Wolverine Raceway, the Red Mile in Lexington and multiple tracks in Italy, until sold in 1994 to Casino America, Inc. (now Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc.). The selling amount was subject to upward adjustment in the event a constitutional amendment was passed permitting casino gambling. The buyers agreed to continue standardbred racing at the facility. The sale followed failed negotiations to sell to the then owners of Hollywood Greyhound Track and Hazel Park near Detroit. The real story, however, takes place many years before, when in 1926, another racetrack was located on the site. It proved to have an interesting history with government intervention, not unlike today's equine industry. In that in 1926, the $1.25 million construction of the original Pompano Park, with grandstands that could seat 7,000 fans, was completed. The mile track, made of clay and sand, was 100 feet wide and many years later served as the hub of the famous training center at Atlantic Blvd and Powerline Road. The grand opening was celebrated on Christmas Day 1926 and huge crowds of spectators reportedly poured into Pompano on chartered buses from around Florida. The track might have been an immense success but there was a barrier (in Florida, at that time, pari-mutuel betting was illegal).  It said, racing was to start Christmas Day until Governor John Martin branded Pompano Park "a center of law breakers" and threatened to send the military to plow up the track and "plant it in cowpeas" unless racing ceased, and it did. The original Pompano Park was then used for automobile races, Polo and boxing matches, without lasting success. In 1928, two years after the track opened, a hurricane ravaged South Florida with 2,000 fatalities and many injuries. Pompano Park became a savior as it was used as a Red Cross station to aid more than 1,000 hurricane victims. Subsequently, the track became dormant until 1953, when Fred Van Lennep, then a prominent Kentucky horseman and former advertising executive, spotted the old track from an airplane. Van Lennep saw great potential for a future racetrack. He purchased the land and immediately began plans to construct a new facility. After lobbying for many years, Van Lennep was able to get pari-mutuel legislation on the ballot and in 1962 it was overwhelmingly voted into law. Van Lennep fulfilled his dream, and his promise, and built what was the well-designed state leader of horse racing tracks. The new Pompano Park opened on February 4, 1964 to a crowd of nearly 6,600 people. The track featured a "state of the art" grandstand, clubhouse and restaurant facility and for the many owners (who also had access to an owners' club), trainers, drivers and caretakers, three racetracks, two being one mile and half mile training tracks and a five-eighths mile main race track. Once completed, there were stalls for 2,000 horses, living quarters for more than 500 caretakers, a swimming pool for horses, a nine-hole golf course and driving range. The main facility featured one of the largest dining rooms in South Florida with seating for more than 800 people. Van Lennep's wife, the renowned horsewoman, Francis Dodge Van Lennep, loved pink flamingos and much of the track was painted in that color. Named the "Winter Capital of Harness Racing", Pompano Park grew in popularity among people in the sport, plus leading celebrities enjoyed their nights at the races. Notables Ed Sullivan, Minnie Pearl, Jackie Gleason, Mickey Rooney, Frank Sinatra, Walter Matthau, Sammy Davis Jr., Rodney Dangerfield, and many others came to Pompano Park regularly along with leading sports figures Whitey Ford, Mickey Mantle, George Steinbrenner, Arnold Palmer, Charlie Keller and Lee Elder. They were regulars during the season and Ford, Steinbrenner, Palmer and Keller became horse, farm and track owners. Years later, celebs still came out for a night at the races including Pulitzer prize-winning author and columnist Dave Barry, baseball's Dennis Martinez, Dolphins quarterback Jay Fiedler, UK and NBA basketball's Sam Bowie, also a prominent standardbred horse owner and breeder. During the 1980 and 90's Pompano Park bloomed at its 331 acre site (including the 180 acre training center that was sold years later for industrial development), hosting the prestigious Breeders Crown numerous times as the world's top Standardbreds, owners, trainers and drivers trained and raced during the winter for some of the sports' richest purses. Records fell annually with the sports' greatest reinsman, the "Gold Dust Twins" Stanley Dancer and Billy Haughton, calling Pompano Park their winter home. The tracks biggest night was on December 27, 1980 when the great pacer Niatross arrived at Pompano Park There were 18,451 fans on-site to see the remarkable pacer, barred from the betting, team with trainer and Hall of Famer Clint Galbraith to a 1.54.3f win by open lengths. Reportedly another 5,000 fans had to be turned away, as cars were parked on the median divider of Powerline Road and across the street in Palm Aire after all racetrack parking areas had been filled to capacity. Every mutuel pool record was rewritten by the fifth race that evening. Pompano continued to play a leading role in the Standardbred sport during the early Breeders' Crown years with its Van Lennep Trotting Series that attracted many of the best US aged performers and some Europeans. John Cashman was a great supporter of international racing and the Van Lennep was his and Pompano Park's trotting showcase during that era. One such event I remember best occurred in 1987. Re-live it below with Dave Joseph's memorable stories. European Flavor Adds Spice to Van Lennep Invitational By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 4, 1987 Pompano Harness Track`s $150,000 Frederick Van Lennep Invitational Trotting Series has lured five of the six European trotters that were extended invitations to compete in the two-race series. The Van Lennep, run over a mile track Oct. 24 and a 1 1/4-mile track Oct. 30, will have Germany`s Reado, Norway`s Scott Iran, Finland`s Black Laukko, France`s Quito du Couronne and Big Spender, who has campaigned throughout Europe. The only trotter who declined the invitation was Sweden`s Emile, second twice this year to two-time Breeders Crown winner Grades Singing. Van Lennep Trot Lures Three of the Best By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 18, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- For the past four months they have crossed paths. First New Jersey, then New York, finally Illinois. In pursuit of being named Aged Trotter of the Year, Sugarcane Hanover, Tabor Lobell and Express Ride have battled on three tracks. But after the three meet tonight in a $10,000 invitational trot at Pompano Park, the trio will have only two more chances to lay claim to seasonal honors. World record holder Express Ride, two-time Breeders Crown winner Sugarcane Hanover, and Invitational Challenge Cup winner Tabor Lobell will use tonight`s invitational as a prep for Pompano`s upcoming $150,000 Frederick Van Lennep Invitational Trot. Express Ride Sets Pompano Mile Record By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 19, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- It was supposed to be a leisurely prep race; a chance for some of the trotters racing in the upcoming Frederick Van Lennep Invitational to get a feel for Pompano Harness Track. Ah, but it was so much more. World record holder Express Ride, driven by Berndt Lindstedt, trotted the fastest mile in Pompano`s 24-year history Sunday night, clocking 1:56 2/5 in the sixth race, a $10,000 invitational trot. It broke Grade`s Singing`s record set in last year`s Van Lennep by 3/5 of a second. Hey, Big Spender Spent A Little Time with Malaise By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 24, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- The travel plans, Berth Johansson thought, were firm. Big Spender, his 6-year-old horse, would trot in West Germany Oct. 11, then be shipped to Paris the next night and prepare for his trip to Pompano Park and the Frederick Van Lennep Trotting Series. How much easier could that be, Johansson thought. "We would race Sunday," the Swedish trainer-driver said. "Then he would sleep, wait 24 hours, and then go to Paris Monday night." Simple, right? But four hours after trotting two heats in West Germany, Big Spender was loaded on a train and spent the next 20 hours riding to Paris. Express Ride Gets Leg Up In Van Lennep By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 25, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- The opposition put it this way: "He`s a monster," trainer Jim Gluhm said. "What else can you say?" Gluhm, trainer of Tabor Lobell, was speaking for all of the estimated 6,000 here who witnessed the performance of Express Ride. The 4-year-old world-record holder won his fifth consecutive race Saturday night when he led throughout the $50,000 Frederick Van Lennep International Challenge over a mile distance at Pompano Park in 1:56 4/5. Reado, an 80-1 long shot from West Germany, finished second by 1/2 lengths. Tabor Lobell`s Finale To Be In Van Lennep By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 29, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- There was really nothing distinctive about that morning, trainer Jim Gluhm said. It was just like any other May morning at Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. "It was cool," Gluhm said. "And there wasn`t much sunshine." That morning, in fact, probably would have slipped from Gluhm`s mind if it wasn`t for one of his workers running out to the track and saying, bluntly, `What the hell are you doing?` "I was starting to train Tabor Lobell to go a 1 1/4 miles and 1 1/2 miles when the horse`s groom came running out asking me that question," Gluhm said. Tabor could handle the distance as on August 30, 1987 he upset many of the best in the sport to win the 1-1/2 mile $100,000 Challenge Cup at Roosevelt. Tabor Lobell Wins Challenge Cup: Tabor Lobell, a 25-1 shot driven by Buddy Gilmour, held off Callit of Sweden last night to capture the $100,000 Challenge Cup, a mile-and-a-half invitational trot at Roosevelt Raceway. The 4-year-old son of Speedy Crown-The-Pro raced third over most of the event, but caught Callit, winner of the International Trot last week, at the head of the stretch. The two went neck and neck to the finish, and Tabor Lobell won by a head, covering the course in 3:03 3/5. Whip It Wood, driven by John Patterson Jr., took third. Tabor Lobell's victory, only his second in 12 races, was worth $50,000 and pushed his career earnings to $199,095. Tabor Lobell was third in the International Trot behind Sweden's Callit and Potin d'Amour from France. (NY Times archives) Record Falls in Van Lennep Sugarcane Hanover Upsets Express Ride By DAVE JOSEPH, Racing Writer, October 31, 1987 POMPANO BEACH -- There was silence on the other end of the line for several seconds before trainer Jim Simpson could express his feeling. "I`m ecstatic," said Simpson. He paused. "I got a tear in my eye." Simpson`s tear came courtesy of Sugarcane Hanover, who came out of hiding at Pompano Harness Track Friday night in world record fashion. After finishing second and ninth to Express Ride in his last two races across Pompano, John Simpson`s Sugarcane Hanover returned to form here when he trotted past 4-5 favorite Express Ride in the final yards to win the $100,000 Frederick Van Lennep International Championship by three-quarters of a length. Sugarcane Hanover with Gunnar Eggen up winning 1988 March of Dimes at Garden State over Ourasi, Mack Lobell and Napoletano by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com    

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the opening night of harness racing at Pompano Park, named the "Winter Capital of Harness Racing" by its founder, innovator and leader Frederick Van Lennep and his original management team. Built on a large 300 acre plus parcel that today is occupied by Wal-Mart and a host of commercial enterprises (on what was the mile track and training center), and across Racetrack Rd. by the Isle Casino Racing Pompano Park, the structure and its storied past, are best recalled by remembering Van Lennep, who passed away in June 1987. The Sun-Sentinel's remarks about Van Lennep are shown below: "He was 100 percent class," said Hall of Fame driver Stanley Dancer. "It wasn`t just that he had a nice word for everybody. He always had time for you. And he was a generous man. There was nothing he wouldn`t do to help anyone." Dancer, though, remembered a time he helped Van Lennep after putting his friend though a little bit of worry. "I had a horse in 1975 named Bonefish that I wanted to sell for a stallion," said Dancer, who served with Van Lennep on the board of directors of the United States Trotting Association. "Mr. Van Lennep told me he wanted to buy it. I told him it would cost him $1 million. He said fine and the deal was completed that fast." "I came back and drove that horse for him later that year in the Hambletonian. It was a four-heat race, and we finished ninth in the first heat. In the second heat, we finished third. We finally won the last two heats to win the race, but not after we got everybody worried." Van Lennep, who headed Castleton Inc., one of the leading standardbred breeding operations in the country, was best known as an innovator in the harness industry. What many people did not realize was that Van Lennep, who was born in Philadelphia on July 6, 1911, was an innovator in other areas as well. "Few people knew that my father had a very impressive physics background," said Hector Van Lennep, a retired general manager at Pompano. "After he graduated from Princeton (1933), he invented a motor that became the basis for the Sperry gyroscope. He was a firm believer in solid fuel propellants long before there was a fuel shortage, and he developed a process to freeze-dry coffee and citrus juice for soldiers fighting in Korea. He was always an innovator." Van Lennep did not become involved in the horse industry until he married his first wife Celeste McNeal. "My mother was quite an equestrian; in fact, she was the first woman to get a thoroughbred trainer`s license," Hector Van Lennep said. "My father was more or less dragged into the business, but he quickly loved it. He became a `gentleman driver` for a lot of amateur races, and he became more in love with the industry." Van Lennep opened Pompano Park in 1964, and doggedly kept the track open though it lost money in its first few seasons. His efforts did not go unnoticed, as he was voted to the Hall of Fame of the Trotter in Goshen, N.Y., in 1975. "His death is a deep, deep loss to the racing industry," said William E. Simon, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, who was a partner of Van Lennep`s in Pompano Park and in the ownership of several horses. "I first met him in 1977, and I have never known a finer man. He brought so much class and integrity to the industry. There is no way to gauge how much he`ll be missed." One of Van Lennep`s major concerns was the Maxwell H. Gluck Equine Research Center at the University of Kentucky. Last September, the university established a $1 million endowed professorship in Van Lennep`s name in hopes of luring top scientists to the center. Simon donated $250,000 toward the endowment. "My father had a lot of favorite horses," said Hector Van Lennep. ":He loved Speedy Scot because he won the Triple Crown. He watched that horse grow and win the Triple Crown and it was very special to him." "But there was another horse named Worthy Boy. Every time he saw my father, he would talk to him. It never failed. As soon as he saw father, this loud whinny would come out. He just had a special affinity toward my father. A lot of people did, too." Pompano Park, under the leadership of Van Lennep and later John Cashman, Jr., was at the forefront of harness racing's best competition. It hosted the Breeders' Crown, in whole or part, from 1984-1993, producing some of the series' best performances by its best equine stars. Pacing events that I recall vividly are Bay's Fella that won the 1990 Open Pace for Paul Macdonell in a huge upset, Call For Rain in 1987 for trainer/driver Clint Galbraith in the Three Year-Old Colt pace, Miss Easy in the 1991 Three Year-Old Filly pace and Bruce Nickells' four-timer in the Two Year-Old Filly pace with Central Park West, Miss Easy, Hazleton Kay and Immortality. Legendary Artsplace took the 1990 Two Year-Old Colt pace for the late great trainer Gene Riegle. On the trotting side, the Breeders' Crown got its Florida start in 1984 when Baltic Speed took the Three Year-Old Colt trot for Jan Nordin, starting off a European impact on the trotting divisions. Other three year-old winners at Pompano included legendary Chuck Sylvester trainees Mack Lobell and Pine Chip and not so legendary Esquire Spur, Embassy Lobell (trained by Jerry Riordan), Giant Victory (trained by Per Eriksson) and Baltic Striker. Mack Lobell also won the Two Year-Old Breeders' Crown at Pompano in 1986 and was followed by Valley Victory in 1988 and then Royal Troubador (trained and driven by Ocala's Carl Allen), Crysta's Best (trainer/driver Dick Richarson, Jr.), Eriksson's King Conch and Giant Chill and trainer Raz MacKenzie's Wesgate Crown in 1993. Two Year-Old filly winners at Pompano included the Tom Haughton trainer Peace Corps, Eriksson's Delphi's Lobell, Soren Nordin's Jean Bi, Chuck Sylvester trained Armbro Keepsake and Winky's Goal and Gleam, owned by Mal Burroughs who won the Hambletonian Oaks driving this filly. Peace Corp returned to Pompano to capture the Breeders' Crown at age three for trainer Tom Haughton and as an aged mare in 1990 for then trainer/driver Stig H. Johansson in 1:54.2f., a time mark that was not lowered until 2004 and that on a mile track. Other memorable Three Year-Old Filly Breeders' Crown winners at Pompano included Sylvester's Armbro Devona, Armbro Fling, Me Maggie (Jan Johnson trained, Berndt Lindstedt driven), Twelve Speed, Imperfection (1992 winner trained by Ron Gurfein) and Expressway Hanover. And in the Aged Open category, who can forget the 1990 score in 1:55f by No Sex Please, the son of Brisco Hanover bred by Earl Lennox, trained by Ron Waples, Jr. and reined by Ron Waples (he won the same event two years later at Mohawk). Pompano Park enjoyed a fine run at the top of standardbred racings' leaderboard and remains in-action today with its attractive 126 race-day fall-winter-spring meet, simulcasting and as host to the Florida Breeders' Stakes program. Many Grand Circuit two year-olds are developed annually on the five-eighths mile raceway and South Florida also attracts a host of well-bred hopefuls at the Sunshine Meadows and South Florida Trotting Center facilities with trainers including those who won the early Breeders' Crown events at Pompano. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com    

Jean-Pierre Dubois, legendary French driver, trainer, owner and breeder, captured Wednesday's  Ahlsell Legends at Solvalla Racecourse. Dubois executed a perfect strategy, leaving alertly from post six driving Jeppas Hugo (7g Coktail Jet-Finesse As-Somatic). Dubois secured a close-up, on the pylons, position that he maintained until the final stretch drive at which time he followed outside flow and jetted to the lead. Jeppas Hugo scored by a length over fast closing Kalle Ouivivra teamed by Helen A. Johannson. Berlusconi finished third for Olle Goop. Dubois returned to driving in France in May 2013 and has performed with excellence, mostly handling horses he bred and owns. He was a Prix d’Amerique winner with Hymour and multiple classic race winner in France, Italy, Sweden , Canada and the U.S (principally as breeder/owner). His most recent Prix d’Amerique appearance ended in a third place finish with Qualita Bourbon. The large Solvalla crowd was treated to an exciting race carried out by the true legends of the trotting sport. Berndt Lindstedt (Dart Hanover and Pershing fame), Helen A. Johannson (only female driver to win a Prix d’Amerique, aboard Ina Scot), Giancarlo Baldi (campaigner of Timothy T in the early 70’s), Olle Goop (winner of 6,700 races), Erik Berglof (driver of mutiple Elitloppet winner Copiad), Stig H. Johannson (six time Elitloppet winner) and Germany’s Heinz Wewering (winner of 16,700 races) contested this event, with other stars of European trotting, over 2140 meters autostart with 100,000SEK to the winner. Solvalla -Ahlsell Legends, 2140 meters autostart, 110,000SEK first money Results 1st. Jeppas Hugo (7g Coktail Jet-Finess As-Somatic), Jean-Pierre Dubois  1.12.8kr 2nd. Kalle Quivivra (7g Victory Abroad-Vasterbo Querisami-Rosalind’s Guy), Helen H. Johansson 3rd. Berlusconi (5m Andover Hall-Always Victorious-Mr. Vic), Olle Goop 4th. Altai, Giancarlo Baldi 5th. Vici Lane, Thomas Nilsson 6th. Haubergs Mimi, Erik Berglof 7th. Parodie, Berndt Lindstedt 8th. Jaguar Broline, Stig H. Johansson 9th. Baticas Yahoo, Heinz Wewering by Thomas H. Hicks  

In addition to several exceptional graded trotting events on tomorrow's Solvalla card, harness racing fans will also be treated to the Ahlsell Legends race featuring many of the greatest living drivers, trainers and all around horsemen. The field lines up as follows as the fourth race over 2140 meters autostart. Ahlsell Legends, Solvalla, 2140 meters autostart, purse 100,000SEK Berlusconi - Olle Goop Parodie - Berndt Lindstedt Vici Lane - Thomas Nilsson' Balticas Yahoo - Heinz Wewering Haubergs Mimi - Erik Berglof Jeppas Hugo - Jean Pierre Dubois Jaguar Broline - Stig H. Johansson Altai - Giancarlo Baldi Kelle Quivivna - Helen A. Johansson See the attached link that promotes the Legends of Trot: Thomas H. Hicks  

ATG Sweden has announced the return of the Legends, scheduled for August 14 at Solvalla Racecourse in Stockholm. Most notably is the participation of Stig H Johansson who has been inactive as a harness racing driver since December 28, 2005. While he has remained a trainer, since that time Erik Adielsson has driven most of the stables' pupils.

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