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East Rutherford, NJ -- Bettor's Wish closed out his racing career in style with a powerful performance in Saturday's (Nov. 21) $340,000 TVG Series Open Pace championship, defeating Backstreet Shadow by 2-3/4 lengths in 1:48.1 at The Meadowlands. This Is The Plan finished third. Bettor's Wish led to the first turn before yielding to Southwind Ozzi in a :27.1 opening quarter. Southwind Ozzi's time on top was short-lived as driver Dexter Dunn directed Bettor's Wish back to the lead and took the field to the half in :54.2 and three-quarters in 1:22. He was never threatened in the stretch.   Sent off as the 1-2 favorite, Bettor's Wish paid $3.00 to win. "I barely asked him tonight, to be honest," Dunn said. "It was all him. It's been him his whole career. He's a true racehorse. "It was a special feeling crossing the line with him tonight. He's been an amazing horse to me." Bettor's Wish, a 4-year-old stallion by Bettor's Delight out of Lifetime Star, won 24 of 44 career starts and $2.60 million. He failed to finish among the top three only three times in his career. He received the Dan Patch Award for best 3-year-old male pacer in 2019 and was second to Shartin N in voting for both Pacer of the Year and Horse of the Year. Other victories this year for Bettor's Wish included the Sam McKee Memorial, Dayton Pacing Derby, and Allerage Farms Open Pace. Bettor's Wish is owned by trainer Chris Ryder, Bella Racing, Fair Island Farm, and Bettors Wish Partners. He was bred by Brittany Farms. "I'm very sad to retire the horse tonight, but it's the right time, it's the right thing to do for his stud career," Ryder said. "I'm really, really going to miss him. He's raced so good for us so many times, it's like I've got to pinch myself when I look back on those races. There are so many good memories. "I'd really like to thank my ownership group. They stood behind me 100 percent and let me race him wherever and whenever and that's made it a whole lot easier. The whole trip has just been very exciting and something I'll never forget." Bettor's Wish bred 58 mares in New Jersey this year before beginning his 4-year-old campaign. He will stand at Diamond Creek Farm of Pennsylvania in 2021. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

With the implementation of the 10 p.m. California curfew beginning Saturday, the adjusted harness racing post time at Cal Expo Harness is now 4:35 p.m.   Players will have something immediate to shoot at when Cal Expo kicks off their meeting Saturday, with a $9,819 carryover in the Hi Five and a $61,678 carryover in the Single 6. Cal Expo Harness has also added a third low-takeout wager to their menu from last season. In addition to the reduced 16 percent takeout rates on the 20-cent Pick 4 and early 20-cent Pick 5, the 20-cent Late Pick 5 will now also feature that value 16 percent takeout rate. The Pick 4 also comes with a $25,000-guaranteed gross pool. James Kennedy will be back to defend his driving title from the previous stand, where he edged out Mooney Svendsen with 101 trips to the charmed enclosure, giving him a half-dozen more than veteran Svendsen. Luke Plano has several driving titles to his credit and also figures to make his share of winner circle appearances this season. In the training ranks, the Kathie Plested barn ran away with the crown at the last meet with Gordie Graham, Bob Johnson and Leon Smith also getting plenty of snapshots. Curtain goes up on Cal Expo harness meet   The trotters and pacers return to Cal Expo Saturday night under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with a 12-race card that finds a pair of $5,000 Open III contests commanding the spotlight. Racing will be conducted on Friday and Saturday evenings throughout the 44-day session and with the implementation of the 10 p.m. California curfew beginning Saturday, first post will now be 4:35 p.m.  The Open III event for pacing fillies and mares looks like a good spot for the hard-knocking disaffer Delightfully Wild, who has gone a number of big races over this course in her career. Delightfully Wild is a 7-year-old daughter of Bettor’s Delight who carries the banner of Richard Morita and David Yamada and sports a 1:51 1/5 career standard that was established two years ago at Pocono Downs.She has plenty of back class in her corner. The Jessie Pacheco trainee comes out of the fastest of eight qualifiers that were held here last Sunday afternoon, finishing third behind Pecorino in a solid 1:55 3/5 mile with Luke Plano in the sulky. Taking her on, from the rail to the outside, are Getter Queen Flush, Relentless Dancer, Nightgirl, Brooklyn Moonshine, La Diva De Rosa, Royal Mistress and Bertha Vanation. Looking at the co-featured Open III Trot, Silverhill Volo is among the solid players in that affair and will be challenged by Teachmehowtotry, Glenferries Dreamer, Bringthegold, Major Al-Mar, Md Magic and Twilight Tinker. The Trot will go as the second race on the night, while the Distaff event will occupy the fifth race spot on the program. by Mark Ratsky, for Cal Expo Harness

FORT WASHINGTON, MD - For harness racing trainer Chris Ryder, the next few weeks are going to be bittersweet. Bettor's Wish, a moderately priced pacing colt Ryder picked up as a yearling for $20,000, will end his racing career. After more than 20 wins and $2.4 million in earnings, Bettor's Wish will head off to stud at Diamond Creek Farm in Pennsylvania in 2021. Sunday's Potomac Pace Invitational at Rosecroft will be one of the 4-year-olds last starts. "Oh, it's going to be tough," said trainer and co-owner Ryder. "He's part of the family. He's a beautiful horse to have around the barn. He's never any trouble, always does everything right. He's been a real gift. "What do you say? He shows up every week. He's a horse of a lifetime." "He's like an old mate," said driver Dexter Dunn. Along with victories this year in the Sam McKee Memorial, Dayton Pacing Derby and the Allerage Open Pace, where he set a track record, Bettor's Wish finished second Oct. 31 in the $500,000 Breeders Crown Open. Recipient of the 2019 Dan Patch Award for best 3-year-old male pacer, Bettor's Wish has rewarded Ryder and his connections with some special memories. Last year Bettor's Wish won the Art Rooney Pace, the Matron Stakes, and a division of the Tattersalls Pace. His second-place finishes came in the North American Cup, Meadowlands Pace, Messenger Stakes and TVG Series Open Pace. Not bad for a $20,000 yearling. "I guess he slipped through the cracks," Ryder said. "He's such a gutsy horse," said Dunn before the Breeders Crown in October. "His attitude is amazing and makes my job easy because he's so versatile. It's not an easy move [from ages 3 to 4], but you know he's going to go out there and give you 100 percent. "I'll miss him, that's for sure." Considered the top older pacer this year, Bettor's Wish enters the Potomac Pace after finishing behind Century Farroh in the Breeders Crown as the betting favorite. Bettor's Wish, who drew post 9 in the Breeders Crown, will leave from Post 5 Sunday evening while Century Farroh leaves from Post 4. Backstretch Shadow (third in the Breeders Crown) and This Is The Plan (fourth in the Breeders Crown), both trained by Ron Burke, will also leave inside Bettor's Wish. Despite the loss in the Breeders Crown, Ryder is optimistic heading into the Potomac Pace. "He's doing fine and came out of the Breeders Crown fine," Ryder said. "The post killed us [in the Breeders Crown]. The horse who beat us is a good horse and had a good trip. We're looking forward to the race at Rosecroft. Hopefully, we'll get a good trip." by Dave Joseph, for Rosecroft Raceway

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 11, 2020 -- Summer Charm knifed through the sloppy Lightning Lane to capture Wednesday's harness racing feature at The Meadows, a $12,000 Filly & Mare Conditioned Pace. Sent off the 7-5 second choice, Summer Charm zipped to the early lead for Tony Hall but released Sansovina Hanover at the quarter in favor of the pocket. That decision paid off late as Summer Charm had pace aplenty to defeat the first-over Diamondtequilashot by a length in 1:51.4. Sansovina Hanover saved show.   Scott Betts trains Summer Charm, a 4-year-old daughter of Bettor's Delight-Lover Of Art who now boasts career earnings of $360,150, for Tim Betts, Nick Catalano, Keith Pippi and Brookside Stables. Hall collected four wins and Dave Palone three on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues with a special Thursday card, first post 12:45 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the MSOA

Harness racing driver Yannick Gingras has won numerous Grand Circuit stakes, including 23 Breeders Crown finals, in his career. That can only be done with some great horses. Thus, it's an impressive declaration when Gingras says of Tall Dark Stranger, "He's the most complete horse I've ever driven." "For pure blazing speed, maybe I've driven horses that are a bit quicker than him; not a lot, but a bit quicker," he added. "But for a horse that can absolutely do it all, I don't really think I've driven one like that and I don't think many other people have, either." Gingras will have perhaps his final chance to drive harness racing's No. 1-ranked horse Saturday in the $500,000 Breeders Crown final for 3-year-old male pacers at Harrah's Hoosier Park. In September, Hanover Shoe Farms announced that Tall Dark Stranger will join its stallion roster for the 2021 breeding season. Tall Dark Stranger will start the Breeders Crown final from post one and is the 3-5 favorite on the morning line. A Breeders Crown winner at age 2, Tall Dark Stranger is looking to become the first male pacer to add a trophy at 3 since Artiscape in 1997-98. "I don't mind the pressure," Gingras said. "If I did, I'd be in the wrong business and maybe being a driver wouldn't be the right thing to do in my life. This week, he's the horse to beat and everybody knows that. "I think that's what makes it fun. I'd rather have the pressure of having the best horse than not having any pressure." Owned by Crawford Farms Racing, Marvin Katz, Caviart Farms, and Howard Taylor, Tall Dark Stranger is trained by Nancy Takter and has been driven by Gingras in every lifetime start but one. He enters the race with 11 wins in 12 starts and $1.19 million in earnings this year; and 19 wins and one second in 21 career starts with $1.90 million in earnings. Sired by Bettor's Delight out of Precocious Beauty, Tall Dark Stranger is the only horse to ever win the Metro Pace and Breeders Crown as a 2-year-old and the Meadowlands Pace and North America Cup as a 3-year-old. He was the Dan Patch 2-Year-Old Colt Pacer of the Year in the U.S. and earned the same honor in Canada. "He's the total package," Gingras said. "It would be hard to pick just one thing I liked. He's big, he's strong, he's fast, he's got heart. He can do it all, there's really no flaws in his armor." Those qualities were not completely apparent as a baby, but Takter and Gingras have cultivated all the potential over two years. "I really loved him from the start but to say he was the most complete horse, I'd be lying if I was saying that at the beginning," Gingras said. "I think he's developed to be that. When I baby raced him I absolutely loved him. He showed then he had tremendous speed and he had a great gait to him. "But until you really test them once or twice you don't know what the heart is. You could have an idea whether they're going to be game or not. Two-year-olds, they're a little dumb in a way. They do things sometimes that they physically can't, but their brains are not telling them not to do it. That's why you have to be careful not to ask a 2-year-old to do too much really early. "We took it easy a little bit on him in the beginning, but when it was time to put the money on the line we raced him and he showed up every single time. He's proved to be a tremendous, tremendous horse." Coming off his Dan Patch-winning year, expectations were obviously high for Tall Dark Stranger. But not so great that he couldn't go even higher. "It would be hard to say he didn't surpass expectations," Gingras said. "Of course I was super confident in the horse, I thought he could win it all and he hasn't lost a race of any major importance. Every big race Nancy put him in the box, he's won them all. It would be hard to say he could do anything more than he's done so far. Now the Breeders Crown is the last little check mark." Gingras feels the colt's breakout race was last year's Metro Pace, when he got out in front and held off a late challenge from Papi Rob Hanover. "He just exploded," Gingras said. "Up until that point we really hadn't raced him too hard. We didn't have to dig until then, and that's when I actually raced him pretty hard. That's when I knew he was better than just a very good horse, he was a great horse, and he hasn't disappointed me since." As for Tall Dark Stranger's best race, Gingras opted for the Meadowlands Pace, when the horse overcame an off day. "He wasn't maybe at his best, there were other races where he's been a little sharper than that," the driver said. "That day he really had to dig deep. Papi Rob took it to him. That day he just showed all the grit I knew he had, and he showed the world how tough of a horse he was." In fact, it is emblematic of how Tall Dark Stranger likes to race. He can get out in front or come from behind, but seems content to always make it a battle. "He likes to fight," Gingras said. "He's not a horse that's going to come home at :25 flat like some of the others. He likes to race, he likes the fractions to be fair. I don't think he's quite the sprinter that many others can be. "Other than that, this week if they mix it up fast the first three-eighths, I could definitely come first up, second over or I could be in the front, and have no worries. I'm not looking to be too far back, so he's going to be put in play one way or the other." In looking at the field, Gingras feels that Cattlewash, Warrawee Vital and Captain Barbossa are among the horses that can give Tall Dark Stranger a challenge. Cattlewash, trained by Ron Burke, won the other Breeders Crown elimination in a track-record 1:47.2 and has a world-record-equaling 1:46.4 mile to his credit. "It's definitely not a one- or two-horse race," he said. "It's a complete field of horses and it goes to show how great of a horse he is because he's beaten them every time." And he will look for one more victory to cap a memorable career. "It actually got into my head about two starts ago, once I got to Lexington. I thought, you know what, there's not much left," he said. "Realistically this weekend could be his last lifetime start. There's a chance he goes to TVG, but it's not official, it depends on how this weekend goes and how he comes out of the race. "I've enjoyed the run, but I think he would be a tremendous aged horse. He's the kind of horse that keeps getting better and tougher. If he came back at 4 and 5, I think he would dominate. Selfishly, I'd love to have him for a couple more years and I think the fans would love to have him. But I understand the breeding part of the business. I totally get it. I know the horse is worth a fortune as a sire." He has already been worth fortune in memories. Harrah's Hoosier Park hosts four $600,000 Breeders Crown finals for 2-year-olds on Friday. The remaining eight finals, for 3-year-olds and older horses, are Saturday. Racing begins at 6 p.m. (EDT) both nights. The 2020 Breeders Crown, presented by the Libfeld-Katz Breeding Partnership, is the 37th edition of the $6 million event. Harrah's Hoosier Park will provide a free live high-definition streaming of the races on YouTube. Following is the field for Saturday's Breeders Crown 3-year-old colt-and-gelding pace final. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-ML 1-Tall Dark Stranger-Yannick Gingras-Nancy Takter-3/5 2-Manticore-Jordan Stratton-Bruce Saunders-20/1 3-Cattlewash-David Miller-Ron Burke-5/2 4-Warrawee Vital-Tim Tetrick-Robert Fellows-6/1 5-Save Me A Dance-Andrew McCarthy-Andrew Harris-20/1 6-No Lou Zing-Dexter Dunn-Nancy Takter-8/1 7-Captain Barbossa-Joe Bongiorno-Tony Alagna-20/1 8-Sandbetweenmytoes-Scott Zeron-Jim Campbell-30/1 9-The Greek Freak-Matt Kakaley-Ron Burke-30/1 10-Elver Hanover-Chris Page-Ron Burke-30/1 Elver Hanover starts from the second tier. by Rich Fisher, for the USTA    

HARRINGTON, DE - Rich Lombardo, David Kryway, Eric Good and Josh Green's Jack's Legend N ($2.80, Pat Berry) notched his 4th straight harness racing win Monday at Harrington Raceway with a 1:52 triumph in the $18,000 Open Pace. Trained by co-owner Green, the 6-year-old Bettor's Delight gelding has been the scourge of the upper level conditioned ranks of late and had no troubles Monday after setting all the fractions in his one length win over Goldberg and Calvin K.   Tony Morgan and Berry each had 3 wins on the card. Montrell Teague had a driving double. Live racing at Harrington continues through Wednesday October 21. by Matt Sparacino, for Harrington Raceway

Columbus, MN - The featured event on the Tuesday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces was the $9,000 Mares Open Handicap Pace with a field of seven talented distaffers lining up behind the gate.  The wagering favorites in the contest were the three New Zealand imports - My Kiwi Lady N was hammered down to 1-5 late and the Jose Cervantes owner entry of Motu Moonbeam N and Quite A Delight N were sent off as the clear second choice at 5-2.    My Kiwi Lady N (Chris Scicluna) worked hard from the outside post to get to the front before the timer flashed up :28 seconds for the opening quarter. Quite A Delight N (Dean Magee) surged past to take over the lead before the :57.2 half mile and fended off pressure from Alwaysalittlemore (Mooney Svendsen) all the way down the backside and around the far turn.    As they straightened for home the other two New Zealand imports were bearing down from both sides on the leader and the kiwi trio hit the line together in a thrilling photo finish.    When the dust cleared it was Motu Moonbeam N (Braxten Boyd, $7.80) who had rallied from last to first to get up right on the money. The top three were all separated by just a neck in 1:54.3.        The winner is an 8 year old daughter of Bettor's Delight, trained by Edward Hernandez. Today's feature win was the sixth tally of the season and twenty-fifth career score for the winner of $460,115.    Driver Rick Magee led the Tuesday program with three winners and Owner/Trainer Mark Anderson had two winners on the card.    The 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot carryover now stands at $17,908.84.    Live Racing continues at Running Aces through October 4. Post Time is 1:00 pm CDT on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.    By Darin Gagné, for Running Aces

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The Bettor's Delight gelding Bellows Binge made a successful harness racing bow for trainer Clay Faurot Jr. and owner Chelsey Faurot, rallying from the pocket to overhaul favored Daamericansky while taking the $16,000 claiming handicap pacing feature Saturday afternoon at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Matt Kakaley and Bellows Binge pushed Daamericansky much of a :26 opening quarter before yielding for the two-hole, then sat behind middle splits of :55.2 and 1:22.4. With no first-over horse lurking nearby, Kakaley had plenty of time to move the winner of $249,623 to the outside, and he went his own last quarter in :27.1 while taking a new lifetime mark of 1:50.1 with the three quarter length victory.   A pair of $14,000 events were the headliners for the fast-class veteran set. On the pace, the Somebeachsomewhere gelding Prince Of Tides, winner of an Adios elimination and second to Southwind Ozzi in the final just 14 months ago (though it seems longer), came over from The Meadows and made a strong move in the last quarter for driver George Napolitano Jr. to take a half length decision over Rockapelo in 1:50. Randy Bendis trains the winner of $303,160 for Let It Ride Stables Inc., Mr. Dana Parham, and Howard Taylor. On the trot, trainer Ãke Svanstedt sent the tough Muscle M Up to town, and despite being three-wide most of the way to the 3/8 in pursuit of the lead, the son of Muscle Hill was an easy winner in 1:53.2. Matt Kakaley, deputizing in the sulky for Svanstedt, was as still as a statue in the stretch as Muscle M Up came home in :28.1 for Knutsson Trotting Inc. Fastest mile of the day was turned in by Stone Hanover, a son of Art Major, who sat behind a hotly-contested pace then rallied for Anthony Napolitano to lower his lifetime mark to 1:49.2. Joe Pavia Jr. trains the winner, and his Joe Pavia Jr. Stable Inc. co-owns him with Steven Held, John Whitig, and Dr. Bridgette Jablonsky. For the second time in three days, George Napolitano Jr. had a six-winner card, following up on a sextet at Philly on Thursday with a six-bagger at Pocono Saturday. George, who had risen to fourth-place in the North American standards as of this writing, has posted a total of 61 victories during the month of September, and he'll have many opportunities to expand that total: at The Meadowlands Saturday night, at Philly then Pocono Sunday, still at Pocono on Monday and Tuesday, and then back to Philly on Wednesday, the 30th. The Rainbow Pick 5 carryover will be at $222,561 when Pocono hosts a twilight card Sunday starting at 5 p.m. From the PHHA / The Downs

Hanover, PA - It is with great excitement and pride that Hanover Shoe Farm’s announces the addition of three -year -old pacing colt phenom Tall Dark Stranger to its stallion roster for the 2021 harness racing breeding season. With a record of 1:49.1 at 2 and a current record of 1:47.1 at 3 and $1,741,645 earned thus far, Tall Dark Stranger has a remarkable slate of 16 wins and 1 second from 18 career starts.  Owned by Crawford Farms Racing, Marvin  and Lynn Katz, Caviart Farms, Marlene Taylor and Howard Taylor, trained by Nancy Takter and driven by Yannick Gingras, Tall Dark Stranger is the only horse in history to win the Metro Pace and Breeders Crown as a two year old and return to racing as a three year old and win both the Meadowlands Pace and North American Cup. Tall Dark Stranger also won the International Stallion Stakes at 2 in route to being voted 2 -Year -Old Colt Pacer of the Year in both the United States and Canada. This year at three, in addition to the Meadowlands Pace and North American Cup he has also captured The Cane Pace and The Kentucky Sire Stakes Final. Tall Dark Stranger is scheduled to start next at The Red Mile and then go on to the Breeders’ Crown at Hoosier Park.  Seemingly destined for greatness from his birth, Tall Dark Stranger was a $330,000 purchase from the 2018 Lexington Selected Sale. He was considered by many to be the premier pacing colt offered at that venue that year. A stunning individual by the legendary stallion Bettors Delight ,Tall Dark Stranger hails from one of harness racing’s most prolific families. He is out of World Champion and Dan Patch and O’Brien Award Winning 2-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year Precocious Beauty p,2,1:50.1 ($838,004), she a sister to successful pacing stallion Sportswriter and out of a sister to Swinging Beauty P,1:49.4 ($893,268) and the grandam of Downbytheseaside P,2,1:49, 3.1:48.3f ($2,179,558) whose eagerly awaited first crop of yearlings sell this fall. “Russell and I are thrilled and honored to have been given the chance to add such an illustrious pacing stallion to our roster, we believe he is the most accomplished pacer to enter the stallion ranks since Captaintreacherous. This will be the our first partnership with Crawford Farms, Caviart Farms and Howard Taylor ,which is exciting ,and  the third stallion we stand that Marvin Katz  owns part of, Captiantreacherous and Bar Hopping being the two others. It is a pleasure to work with Marvin ,he has vast knowledge of the breeding business and a  terrific band of broodmares to support his stallions”,  says Hanover Executive Vice President Dr. Bridgette Jablonsky.  Trainer Nancy Takter calls Tall Dark Stranger “One of the best pacers we have seen. A champion at two and three, he’s done things that no horse has ever done. He’s a pleasure to train and knows that his job is to win”. Driver Yannick Gingras says that Tall Dark Stranger is the best pacing colt he has ever driven. “He has all the tools needed for greatness. Speed, gait, and looks but above all his desire to win races is truly unbelievable to me. He’s a champion in every sense of the word”. Tall Dark Stranger will stand in Pennsylvania His service fee and details concerning the Syndication will be forthcoming. From Hanover Shoe Farms      

WILKES-BARRE, PA - Bell I No had won five straight races in the $16,000 top claiming handicap pace at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, all with George Napolitano Jr. driving (all after being claimed out of the previous race), but on Saturday the track's leading harness racing driver selected off the streaking pacer in favor of Daamericansky, with whom he had won in 1:50.2 at Philly last time out and who was sent off as favorite. For 5200+ feet of this week's featured claimer, it looked like GNap and the crowd had made a winning selection as Daamericansky led from the go, but suddenly the Bettor's Delight gelding Lachie Maguire N and driver Jim Marohn Jr. came flying late and caught the chalk in the last step in 1:51. Bell I No, who had to go first-over, settled for third here, and he will again be changing barns for the $30,000 claiming price. Lachie Maguire N, a ten-year-old who took his mark of 1:50.2 here earlier this year, now has a lifetime bankroll of $462,357. Justin Sodano trains the consistent veteran for owner Anthony Ventriglio. A foursome of $11,200 conditioned features, two on the trot and two on the pace, served as co-featured events; drivers Tyler Buter and Jordan Stratton both captured one of each. One of the trots went to the 2019 Pocono Trotter of the Year, the Explosive Matter gelding Rich And Miserable, who was an easy winner in 1:53.2 for Tyler Buter, trainer Todd Buter, and the partnership of Buter Farm Inc., Lynette Buter, and William and Carol Fuhs. In the other trotting section, the Great Success gelding Need Luck N came uncovered from sixth, going his own last half in :56.4, to win in a lifetime best 1:55 for Stratton, trainer Jason Johnson, and owner David Neilson (who, interestingly, was the owner claiming Bell I No today). In the first of the two co-headline paces, the Somebeachsomewhere gelding Kerford Road A took full advantage of the rail, not letting anyone go, including early-moving favorite Dealt A Winner. And after all that, he still had enough to withstand closing Peace Out Posse while recording a lifetime best of 1:50.1 for Tyler Buter, trainer Rob Harmon, and the ownership of Harmon Racing Stable LLC, Winners Circle Racing LLC, and John Campagnuolo. Jordan Stratton repeated his uncovered tactics in the co-featured trot to secure the victory in the other top pace, just rallying the A Rocknroll Dance gelding Itsrocknroll A past stubborn pacesetter Lying In Cash in a 1:51.4 lifetime mile best for trainer Dylan Davis, the latter co-owner with Michael Casalino Jr. Buter, Stratton, and Anthony Napolitano each guided three horses back past the winners circle on the Saturday afternoon program. Racing resumes at Pocono tomorrow at 5 p.m., with a $204,904.38 carryover in the Rainbow Pick 5 pool (have a unique ticket with winners of the last five races). From the PHHA / The Downs

CHESTER, PA - The Bettor's Delight mare Delishka N made a pace-controlling move in front of the stands the first time, then held off a wall of harness racing challengers the second time around to win the $14,400 featured distaff pace at Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon in 1:51. Dexter Dunn sent Delishka N out to early command, yielded to Bettor Joy N, then went onward again when favorite Machnhope made a move just past the :26.1 quarter. Delishka N went back to the lead around Bettor Joy N, with Machnhope, seeing a likely battle for pace control developing, got in a vacant three-hole before the :54.3 half. The winner did not receive a strong challenge past the 1:22.2 three-quarters, but as they neared headstretch, there seemed to be "live" horses everywhere. Delishka N was most "live" of all, holding off inside rallier Machnhope by a half-length, with first-over Shezallapples A showing good determination late to gain third, a photo away from second. Bettors Joy N was beaten less than two lengths and still did not get a check from finishing sixth.   Richard Johnson trains the winner of $387,864 for D'Elegance Stable IX. Still among the older females, the Well Said mare Caviart Cherie made it 3-for-3 since teaming with trainer Darren Taneyhill and the Wildcard Stables Inc., during that time going from the second-lowest condition at Pocono to the second-highest for mares here today, a $11,200 contest in which she posted a 13-1 upset in a new mark of 1:50.4. Joe Bongiorno rallied the winner of $399,947 from the pocket to overhaul pacesetting favorite Anytime N by a length. The $12,800 co-featured fillies and mares pace for the classclimbing crowd saw New Year, who was 7-5 in a Pennsylvania Sire Stake against JK First Lady at Philly recently, enjoy the drop in company here en route to a 1:51.4 triumph as a heavy favorite. George Napolitano Jr. drove the sophomore Somebeachsomewhere filly, who has now amassed $197,415, for trainer Chris Ryder and the partnership of Let It Ride Stables Inc. and Bottom Line Racing LLC. Tim Tetrick won four races on the day, including with Iaquinta, who broke a 51-race losing streak dating back to June 29, 2018. She came from an unusual spot for winners at Philly, too - fourth-over, with Tetrick keeping her off an overheated pace and then rallying her for the 12-1 victory.  From the PHHA / Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER, PA - Veteran trainer Kelvin "Red" Harrison, a native New Zealander, has recently had several horses from his native land join his stable under the Curtin ANZ Stables banner, and has enjoyed great success with them, including with the Bettor's Delight mare She's Nun Bettor N, who won the $12,800 featured distaff pace at Harrah's Philadelphia Wednesday afternoon. George Napolitano Jr. sent the four-year-old mare right to the lead and rattled off fractions of :27.3, :57.1, and 1:24.2, then stood firm in the face of a late charge from Take Abit Of Life, who was 1½ lengths behind and just edging Wingding Hanover for second in the 1:54.2 mile. She's Nun Bettor N now has a North American record of 6-4-1-1-$27,390, and even better things may await her.   The Mach Three mare Machnhope enjoyed a class drop into the $11,60 cofeatured distaff pace and commanded her field through splits of :27.1, :55.1, and 1:23 en route to a sharp 1:50.1 clocking, a lifetime best. Pat Berry guided the speedy five-year-old, who has a 28% lifetime win ratio (21-for-83) and $285,301 in the bank, for trainer Noel Daley, also co-owner along with Deo Volente Farms LLC, Thomas Pontone, and L A Express Stable LLC. FINISHING LINES - Despite what was originally published, Philly will race this Friday's card, and that of Friday, October 2, at 12:25 instead of at night ... Ãke Svanstedt had a powerhouse trio of trotters win qualifiers at Pocono Wednesday morning. They were the two-year-olds Narzarro (a Trixton gelding out of Gerri's Joy) in 1:58 and the Muscle Hill - Cedar Dove colt Jula Pro Hanover in 1:57.3, along with the Ready Cash sophomore colt Light Blue Movers in 1:54.1. The trio's winning margins were an aggregate 63¼ lengths. From the PHHA / Harrah's Philadelphia

MILTON, ON -  August 29, 2020 - Harness racing three-year-old pacer Tall Dark Stranger looked like a million dollars in taking the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup, Saturday night at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Trained by Nancy Takter, Tall Dark Stranger and Yannick Gingras were content to let Tattoo Artist make his mark on the lead, as the latter powered from post seven to strike front early in the proceedings. With Bob McClure in the bike, Tattoo Artist took his nine rivals through an opening mile carved out in a snappy :25.4, with Tall Dark Stranger settling in second. Longshots Moneyman Hill, in third, and Mayhem Hanover, sitting fourth, watch the pacesetting duo set the tone early. Soon after the quarter-mile mark, Gingras, contesting his ninth Cup, powered his 3-5 favourite to the outside and to the lead, as they cut a half in :53.3. It was Tall Dark Stranger still calling the shots as the field geared up for the stretch drive. McClure pulled Tattoo Artist to the outside looking to track down the frontunner. For a brief moment, it appeared as though they were cutting into the lead of Tall Dark Stranger, but he pulled away down the lane for another impressive score. Tattoo Artist was second, while 127-1 Moneyman Hill finished third. Odds on Osiris, leaving from post 10, rallied to take fourth. There was plenty of emotion in the aftermath of the victory, including a teary-eyed Gingras, and an elated Marvin Katz, who co-owns Tall Dark Stranger with Crawford Farms Racing, Caviart Farms and Howard Taylor. It was the second straight Cup title for Takter, who won last year with Captain Crunch. And it was also a historic triumph. "I'm overjoyed, I really am," said Katz. "I've been doing this for a very long time and I've been fortunate to have many great horses, but I think this guy really rates up with some of the greatest horses we've ever seen. This is historic. What he's done tonight has never been done before. He won the Metro as a two-year-old, he won the Breeders Crown - he's come back to win the Meadowlands Pace and he's won the North America Cup. Somebeachsomewhere, Captaintreacherous... they couldn't do it, but he's done it." The enormity of the accomplishment wasn't lost on Takter, who wasn't able to watch the race in-person. "This is an extra-special colt in extraordinary circumstances," she told Woodbine Mohawk Park. "I'm so proud of the horse and my team." Gingras had ample praise for the competitive spirit shown by the sophomore superstar. "I rolled him to three-quarters pretty hard but he just never quits. He's just a tremendous horse - the best pacing colt I've ever driven, there's no doubt in my mind. He's just an amazing animal. I feel awesome, there's no doubt about it. This means so much. I couldn't be any happier right now." Winning trainer Tony Alagna was also represented by Captain Kirk and Captain Barbossa. All of his starters were sired by Captaintreacherous, who won the NA Cup in 2013. A son of 2001 Cup winner Bettors Delight, Tall Dark Stranger, closing in on $2 millions in earnings, is now 14 for 16 lifetime. "I think he's just stronger than they are right now, and he can get them tired just by trying to keep up with him," said Gingras. Tall Dark Stranger paid $3.20, $2.40 and $2.40, combining with Tattoo Artist ($4.30, $3.50) for a $16.20 exactor. Moneyman Hill ($20.70) completed a $2 triactor worth $476.40. Odds On Osiris rounded out a $1 superfecta worth $2,596.30. Saturday evening's Pepsi North America Cup card established a new Pepsi North America Cup handle record of $5,619,402. The handle was headlined by $1.1 million in new money wagered on the Jackpot Hi-5 mandatory payout. by Chris Lomon, for Woodbine Communications  

By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk    The dominance of Bettor’s Delight up to and including 2020 has evoked memories of another super sire born exactly one hundred years ago. In the season just gone by Bettor’s Delight’s progeny were a league above any other, and when he is crowned champion sire at next month’s Harness Racing awards it will be his ninth New Zealand premiership in a row. The first sire to do nine straight was a horse that sounds more like a driver or trainer – Jack Potts. Born exactly one hundred years ago Jack Potts was the leading sire from 1937/8 to 1945/6 after a mixed racing career. Foaled in 1920 the American-bred two-year-old was imported to this country by Alex Anderson of Christchurch. Plagued by leg injuries he won nine races including being placed twice in the New Zealand Cup. In the 1927 Auckland Cup he was narrowly beaten by dual New Zealand Cup winner Ahuriri. As a sire he not only topped the list for nine years straight but was in the top three for 13 seasons. During the depression he stood at just seven pounds and many breeders were so hard up that they would pay the fee off a pound at a time as they could afford it. Altogether he sired 271 individual winners (1212 races) and his daughters produced over 320 winners. His list of winners include some impressive names, among them Inter-dominion champion Emulous (1948) and two-time New Zealand Cup winner Lucky Jack (1937 and 1939). The stock of Jack Potts also won four New Zealand Derbies. As a sire of broodmares Jack Potts was even more successful. Among the major winners his daughters produced were Tactician, the first two-minute racehorse outside North America who won 20 races including an Inter-Dominion in 1955. There was also 18-race winner Van Dieman, the winner of the 1951 New Zealand Cup for Cecil Devine. 1953 Auckland Cup winner Thelma Globe was another stand out with 17 victories and a world record over 1 ¼ miles (2000 metres). In all the direct offspring of Jack Potts won more than 1200 races. He died in 1948 aged 28. Another champion sire U Scott took over from Jack Potts and equalled the nine premierships but they were between 1946/7 and 1961/2, not consecutively. Other top stallions at the time were Dillon Hall, Hal Tryax and Light Brigade. The great Vance Hanover was the champion sire for 10 years in a row, between 1987/8-1996/7. He was unraced (because of a cracked sesamoid) and the first son of world champion pacer and sire Albatross to be made available to New Zealand breeders. His progeny had 2106 wins from 1983 to 2001. In contrast stock from the now 23-year-old Bettor’s Delight have produced nearly 3500 wins from more than 1200 NZ-bred winners in this country since 2007, including five of the last six New Zealand Cup winners (The Fixer, Lazarus, Adore Me, Arden Rooney) and other stars like Tiger Tara, Have Faith In Me and Chicago Bull. Just like U Scott took over from Jack Potts, Bettor’s Delight took over from Christian Cullen. Many millionaires have been produced by the Bettor’s delight production line, with the prospect of many many more in the future.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Bettor's Wish took the lead on the backstretch and held off all challenges to win Saturday's (Aug. 8) $229,660 Sam McKee Memorial for older male harness racing pacers by a neck over Backstreet Shadow in a career best 1:47.3 at The Meadowlands. Century Farroh finished third.   Backstreet Shadow took the lead in a :25.3 opening quarter before Bettor's Wish charged to the front in a :52.1 half. Dancin Lou came first-over to battle Bettor's Wish into the final turn, but Bettor's Wish rebuffed his effort as they reached three-quarters in 1:19.4.   The job was not finished, though, as Backstreet Shadow looked to rally in the stretch, but Bettor's Wish and driver Dexter Dunn fended him off for the victory.       "We were going pretty hard, but he's just such a tough horse and he never gives in," Dunn said. "He got a little tired at the end off those fractions, but he stuck his head out.   "He's done that his whole career. He's given 110 percent every time and put up some amazing performances. It's a pleasure to drive him."   Bettor's Wish was the sport's top earning horse in 2019, when he won 13 of 19 races and $1.64 million. He was voted the Dan Patch Award winner for best 3-year-old male pacer and was runner-up to Shartin N for Horse of the Year.   This year, the son of Bettor's Delight has won two of five starts. He pushed his career earnings to $2.07 million. He is owned by trainer Chris Ryder, Bella Racing, Fair Island Farm and Bettor's Wish Partners.   Bettor's Wish, the 3-1 second choice behind 2-1 favorite Dancin Lou, paid $8.80 to win.   The Sam McKee Memorial, formerly the U.S. Pacing Championship, honors the late Meadowlands Racetrack announcer and Communicators Hall of Fame member Sam McKee, who passed away in 2017.   "It's a great race to win," Ryder said. "It's hard to describe. It's an honor to win it for Sam. I hope he's looking down on us today."   by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

The Multi-millionaire, Bettor's Edge (Jennifer Lappe) wins the $5,200 featured harness racing pace at Vernon Downs on Saturday (August 1). Major Leaguer (Josh Kinney) went to the lead and put up a sharp :25.4 first quarter. He continued in front using a :28.4 second quarter to hit the half in :54.3. Zone Blitz (John MacDonald) was the first to make a move first-over but stalled as they headed for three-quarters with Major Leaguer getting there first in 1:22.4. As they headed for home Bettor's Edge ($5.70) got an opening and popped out of the pocket and challenged Major Leaguer for the lead. Chip Walther (Leon Bailey) came three-wide down the stretch but Bettor's Edge got the jump and won in a seasonal best of 1:50.0. Chip Walther came up for second with Major Leaguer holding on for third.   Bettor's Edge is an 11-year-old gelding by Bettor's Delight. Lappe trains and co-owns with Robert Santagata. It was his second win this season and his 48th career victory. John MacDonald drove three winners on the card. Jennifer Lappe and Roman Lopez each had training-driving doubles. Josh Kinney piloted two winner's on the night as well. Vernon Downs returns to live racing on Friday (August 7) at 3 p.m. For more information go to www.vernondowns.com by John Horne, for Vernon Downs

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