Through the first 32 consecutive editions of Maywood Park’s Windy City Pace several of this prominent 3-year-old stakes have likely been won or lost by the luck of the draw a few days before the race. Drawing outside on a half-miler can be a disaster in a big money event. For that matter a poor post can sometimes have a dramatic effect on a horse’s chances to win on a big track as well. After Somewhere In L A acquired the 10-hole in last week’s $227,000 American National 3-year-old colt pace at Balmoral Park his driver Brett Miller had to be grinning when he learned the Jimmy Takter gelding landed the two-slot for tonight’s $180,000 Windy City Pace. Last week Somewhere In L A came from seventh at the three-quarter pole to finish second best behind JK Endofanera, uncorking a :26.4 last quarter. “Of course drawing the 10-hole hurt my horse’s chances but what hurt us even more was having Limelight Beach and JF Endofanera starting right next to us,: said Brett. “I was kind of forced to do the opposition of what they did. Nevertheless my horse raced really good. “Jimmy Takter has done a great job with the horse. Somewhere In L A is no doubt one of the nicest horses I have ever sat behind,” continued the 41-year--old Ohio native with over 6,700 career driving wins. “Somewhere In L A is a Cadillac to drive. He can do it any way. He can race up-front. He can race off the pace and he can race first-over. There are a lot of horses who can’t race first-over. Unfortunately I’ve been stuck with him first-over quite a bit. “In the Adios I was first over. In the Jug I was first-over, so I’m very happy he got the two-hole in the Windy City. “This horse has made $444,000 this year and honestly, not to be whining, if he had drawn some better post position who knows how much he could have made.” Somewhere In L A will open up as the 2-1 morning line favorite to add the winner’s share of the Windy City purse to his bank account for his east coast owners J&T Silvia, Deo Volente Farms and T L P Stable who acquired the son of Somebeachsomewhere on June 1 of this year. Let’s Drink On It (Travis Seekman), an American National champion at two, is the 5-2 second choice with the one-slot. The Joe Seekman went from 10th to 3rd last week in the final quarter of the mile of the 3-year-old American National pace and was second best to Limelight Beach in the Jug Final on the Delaware, Ohio half-mile oval. Big Boy Dreams (4-1, Tim Tetrick), also figures to get a lot of play after last week’s 1:51.1 romp in a American National Consolation, the Ron Burke trainee’s second start on Lasix. From the four slot out you’ll find Three Of Clubs (6-1, Doug Mc Nair), Kingofthe jungle (20-1, Brian Carpenter), Neat (10-1, Casey Leonard), On Golden Ponder (12-1, Dean Magee) and the Illinois bred champ Unlocked (15-1, Dave Magee). by Mike Paradise, for IHHA
Friday's $180,000 Windy City Pace, one of Maywood Park's pinnacle races, is a showcase event on an evening sprinkled with star-studded Standardbreds that have journeyed to Chicago's in-town, half-miler from throughout North America. The pacer that's traveled the farthest to compete tonight is Kentucky Sire Stakes champion On Golden Ponder. Ontario-based Robert McIntosh, 62, will harness the son of Ponder for just his eighth start this season. The bay 3-year-old, who was foaled May 28, 2011 in Lucan, Ontario, has a trio of wins this year and $120,664 in seasonal earnings. On Golden Ponder got a late start this season due to an injury sustained during the winter months, and the tenacious McIntosh gave his youngster plenty of time to recouperate. The colt earned $74,965 as a 2-year-old from nine starts with four wins and one second, and holds the record for the fastest 2-year-old ever on a half-mile track, having posted a winning 1:52.2 world-record clocking in the 2013 edition of the $52,544 Standardbred at Delaware, drawing off by 6Â½ lengths with Hall of Famer John Campbell at the lines. On Golden Ponder has triumphed in a pair of $15,000 legs and the $175,000 Final of the Kentucky Sire Stakes at Lexington this year: on Aug. 10 (in 1:57.2); Aug. 24 (in 1:54.3); and Aug. 31 (in 1:59.2). On Golden Ponder is owned by the McIntosh Stables, Inc., of LaSalle, ON; CSX Stables of Liberty Center, OH; and Michael Kohler of Grosse Pointe Woods, MI. He was bred by McIntosh and CSX Stables and is the third foal out of the Intrepid Seelster mare In Trepid Water p,3,1:51.3s ($410,748), with a pair of half-siblings: Great Waters p,2,1:55.1f ($33,281) and Cool Like That p,3, 1:52h ($106,844)--both by The Panderosa. McIntosh has conditioned 3,299 winners to $81,854,034 in career earnings and was inducted into the Canadian Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 2010. He also trained both of On Golden Ponder's parents. In Trepid Water was a top mare on the Ontario Sire Stake circuit as a 3-year-old and Ponder p, 5, 1:48.1m ($1,522, 936), when he retired, was the fastest and richest son of The Panderosa. Also hailing from our neighbors to the north is Three Of Clubs, the Ontario Sire Stake champion who'll be harnessed by trainer Gregg McNair, who co-owns the Mach Three son with fellow Canadians Keith Waples and Tony Lawrence. Three Of Clubs comes here tonight fresh off a career best 1:51.1 victory in the $225,500 OSS Final at Mohawk on Oct. 11. He has scored four OSS wins the past two seasons and also captured the $12,125 elim and the $138,720 Battle of Waterloo at Grand River Raceway as a freshman. Three Of Clubs was a $25,000 yearling purchase at the 2011 Forest City Sale and is the first foal out of his dam, the Precious Bunny mare CC Kloe p, 3, 1:57F ($24,076). Lifetime, he's amassed six wins, three seconds and five thirds from 23 starts, with a bankroll of $432,181. The Jimmy Tatker trained Somewhere In LA, who has been a major player on the Pennsylvania Sire Stake circuit this season, is the richest contender ($516,643) in the field of eight. The son of Somebeachsomewhere finished second in last week's American National at Balmoral to JK Endofanera, and two weeks prior won the $41,700 Keystone Classic at The Meadows in 1:51.2. This Ontario-bred won a $50,000 Adios Elim, the $55,016 Diplomat Final (at Woodbine) and was second in the $400,000 Adios Final this season. He is owned by J&T Silva Stables, NY; Deo Volente Farms and TLP Stable of NJ. Big Boy Dreams , trained by Ronnie Burke, has been racing in his home state of New York for most of the season, with wins at Saragota and Batavia. He also captured the American National consolation at Balmoral last Saturday in a wire-to-wire, career best 1:50.1 performance for Yannick Gingras. Owned by Dominic Rosato of Utica, NY, Big Boy Dreams won multiple New York Sire Stake tests at two and to date has eight wins, three seconds and six thirds in 19 lifetime starts. A $9,000 yearling at the Morrisville, NY Sale, Big Boy Dreams is the third foal out of the unraced Art Major mare Stefani Blue Chip, and is a half-brother to Sebring Blue Chip (by Western Terror) p,3,1:55.3f ($40,891) and to Mo Molly Blue Chip (by Rock N Roll Heaven) p,2,1:58h ($34,569). Neat is another New York-bred who comes into the Windy City fresh off four victories at Yonkers Raceway. Owned by Illinoisans Paymaq Racing and Tim Towne and trained by Erv Miller, the gelded son of Art Major has amassed $155,366 lifetime competing in the Empire State. He was $30,000 yearling purchase at the 2012 Standardbred Horse Sale at Harrisburg and is the second foal out of his Island Fantasy dam Stonebridge Luau p, 3, 1:53S ($172,623). Neat is a full brother to Scirocco Billy p,3,1:56.1f ($34,653) and has a half-sibling in the 2-year-old gelding Surf Report p,2,Q1:58.4h, by Sportswriter. By Kimberly Rinker, for Maywood Park
In case you have not already signed up for Harnesslink’s great newsletter called Insider Access, then here is your chance. Just click here and within seconds you will be on track for the latest news in harness racing that you will not see or read about anywhere else, even on our own website. This week’s Insider Access newsletter contains the following feature stories: Is this kicking a horse or not? - There has been quite a bit of controversy over “kicking” and/or “nudging” horses. At Lexington’s Red Mile this past week, Harnesslink’s Chris Tully captured this dramatic finish as Billy Flynn (#6) saw his eight-race win streak come to an end at the hands of Pinkman (#4). Get your friends to enter “Win The Wheels Contest” - How would you like to win a set of $1,400US custom race bike wheels from Forward Motion Technologies, perhaps a full set of RazorHorse shoes, maybe a five gallon bucket of Lifeline Horse Supplement or a $100 Amazon gift card? Miracle stake rise? - Rumours continue to flow about the stake level of the Miracle Mile. With the Grand Circuit event currently offering a purse of $750,000, it’s believed the bankroll will be lifted in 2015/16. Stallion Review – KADABRA - Continuing on with our stallion review series today we have produced an in depth review for the excellent racehorse and stallion Kadabra, 4, 1:51.3 ($2,190,707). Don’t miss out on the next edition of Insider Access. The newsletter currently comes out every other Tuesday morning (North America), Tuesday afternoon (Europe) and Wednesday morning (Australasia).
In case you have not already signed up for Harnesslink’s great newsletter called Insider Access, then here is your chance. Just click here and within seconds you will be on track for the latest news in harness racing that you will not see or read about anywhere else, even on our own website. This week’s Insider Access newsletter contains the following feature stories: Miracle Mile stake rise? - Rumours continue to flow about the stake level of the Miracle Mile. With the Grand Circuit event currently offering a purse of $750,000, it’s believed the bankroll will be lifted in 2015/16. Is this kicking a horse or not? - There has been quite a bit of controversy over “kicking” and/or “nudging” horses. At Lexington’s Red Mile this past week, Harnesslink’s Chris Tully captured this dramatic finish as Billy Flynn (#6) saw his eight-race win streak come to an end at the hands of Pinkman (#4). Get your friends to enter “Win The Wheels Contest” - How would you like to win a set of $1,400US custom race bike wheels from Forward Motion Technologies, perhaps a full set of RazorHorse shoes, maybe a five gallon bucket of Lifeline Horse Supplement or a $100 Amazon gift card? Stallion Review – KADABRA - Continuing on with our stallion review series today we have produced an in depth review for the excellent racehorse and stallion Kadabra, 4, 1:51.3 ($2,190,707). Don’t miss out on the next edition of Insider Access. The newsletter currently comes out every other Tuesday morning (North America), Tuesday afternoon (Europe) and Wednesday morning (Australasia).
WASHINGTON, PA, Sept. 30, 2014 — Somewhere In L A, runner-up to McWicked in the 2014 Adios Pace for the Orchids Presented by Coors Light, made a successful return to The Meadows when he notched a facile victory in a division of Tuesday’s $83,400 Keystone Classic. When National Debt captured the other split in the event for sophomore colt and gelding pacers, it gave Brett Miller a stake sweep. In addition to his fine work in the Adios, Somewhere In L A finished third in the Little Brown Jug after tough trips in both heats. Miller indicated the colt’s demanding journeys helped shape his driving strategy for the Keystone Classic. “In the Adios and the Jug, I ended up first over with him,” he said. “Today, I tried to give him the easiest trip possible, and he exploded.” Away fourth, the Somebeachsomewhere-West Of L A gelding followed the first-over cover of Mattamerican, tipped three-wide entering the final turn and stormed home in 1:51.2, 2-3/4 lengths better than 25-1 long shot Sean Liam Q. Early leader Allstar Partner was third. Somewhere In L A extended his career bankroll to $466,703 for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners J&T Silva Stables, Deo Valente Farms and TLP Stable. National Debt was much the best in his split, rolling to a front-end triumph in 1:51.4 despite bearing out late. Seventh Secret was 4-1/2 lengths back in second while Hemingway completed the ticket. The son of Allamerican Native-Our Inheritance was making only his second stake appearance since the Meadowlands Pace, but Ron Coyne, Jr., who trains National Debt for Blair Corbeil, Erna Corbeil, Kelly Hoerdt and J&T Silva Stables, said the colt’s schedule will intensify. “He was off by himself and let his mind wander and started to drift a bit,” Coyne said. “We’ll make a couple adjustments and see if we can straighten him up. He has a full dance card for the fall; that’s why you saw him in some overnights. We needed some spots to keep him tight until his stakes.” $81,200 Keystone Classic, 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trotters Tuesday’s program also featured two divisions of an $81,200 Keystone Classic for 3-year-old colt and gelding trotters, with Way Outta Here and Frost Free Hanover collecting comfortable wins. Hammered down to 1-5 following three consecutive wins in overnight races, Way Outta Here had little trouble extending his streak with a late brush for David Miller that carried him to victory in 1:54.4, 2-1/4 lengths ahead of Dony Andreas, with JJ Alex third. It was the first career stakes victory for the Broadway Hall-I’m A Pearl gelding, who has been limited to 10 starts over two seasons by persistent gaiting problems. “He’s been a bit of a project, but he’s finally got his act together,” David Miller said. “He’s coming around. He wouldn’t stay flat — ran all the time. We finally got him where he’s comfortable. He wasn’t really keeping up going to the half, so I couldn't move him. But he had plenty of trot when he got back out.” Mark Harder conditions Way Outta Here for Blair Blanchet. Ticketed for the Harrisburg sale, Frost Free Hanover presented his owners — trainer Leslie Zendt, Bill Zendt, Sig Wolkomir and Fred Kayne — a going-away present when he powered from the pocket before the three-quarters for Brian Zendt and strolled home in 1:55. Journey was second, 2-1/2 lengths in arrears, while Uva Hanover earned show. The Cantab Hall-Free Spirit gelding raced just once at 2 but this year won eight of 15 starts and $128,418. “I thought he was in pretty tough today,” said Leslie Zendt of this year’s Pennsylvania Stallion Series divisional champion. “I would have been happy with a second or third, but he stepped his game up. Brian used him three times, and he hung tough. He’s definitely been an overachiever all year.” Brian Zendt drove four winners and Dan Rawlings three on the 16-race card. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows
Harness racing driver Brett Miller has suffered few anxious moments this season with undefeated 2-year-old male trotter Billy Flynn, but the minutes prior to the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship were difficult to endure. Billy Flynn, in the midst of enjoying himself as the field warmed up for the race, accidentally took off his right front shoe. Miller tried to locate the shoe, but muddy track conditions that night made it impossible. So Miller brought Billy Flynn back to the paddock, where the blacksmith put on a random shoe moments before racing for $260,000. "I was sick to my stomach," said Miller, who is able to laugh now as he retells the story. "It felt like it took an hour. For him to go through all that and then go out and annihilate the field, it was pretty amazing." Billy Flynn won the race, held Sept. 6 at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, by 2-3/4 lengths in a career-best 1:55.2. He rallied from fourth place after three-quarters with a three-wide move around the final turn. "He races great on the front, but I think he's better from off the pace," Miller said. "When he's following horses and has a target to go after, he's unreal." Billy Flynn puts his 8-for-8 record on the line Friday in the third of five International Stallion Stakes divisions at The Red Mile in Lexington. Billy Flynn will start from post six with Miller at the lines for trainer Staffan Lind. Last week, in his first start since the sire stakes championship, Billy Flynn won a division of the Bluegrass Stakes by a half-length over Muscle Diamond in 1:55.4. "I thought he raced great," Miller said. "He felt as good as he's felt all year. He was a little wound up, a little more grabby than usual, but I think being at Lexington he was just feeling good." Billy Flynn is a son of stallion Cantab Hall out of the mare Zeta Jones and was named after the smooth-talking lawyer in the musical "Chicago," which co-starred Catherine Zeta-Jones in the film version. Owned by Bender Sweden Inc., the colt was purchased as a yearling for $120,000 at the 2013 Lexington Selected Sale and is a full brother to Mr Chicago, who was a winner in both the U.S. and Europe. "Staffan has done some kind of job training him, manners-wise," said Miller, who has driven Billy Flynn in all eight of his races, earning $312,057 in purses. "I know a lot of that, too, is the horse himself, but Staffan has done a great job with him. "He's like an older horse because you can do anything you want with him in a race. He's so handy. His manners are so good. And he gives 110 percent. When a horse is near him, he tries so hard to fight that horse off. So far, he has (fought them off)." Billy Flynn's International Stallion Stakes division includes stakes-winner Pinkman and New York Sire Stakes champion Crazy Wow. Also part of the field is Canepa Hanover, a $300,000 yearling purchase who is a half-brother to 2006 Horse of the Year Glidemaster. "I'm realistic," Miller said. "I know there are some colts out there that he could have a tough time with. I love the colt, he's the best 2-year-old trotting colt I've ever sat behind, but he hasn't faced everybody. I'm sure he's going to get beat one day. "It's just been a fun ride so far, that's for sure." Stakes-winner French Laundry and New York Sire Stakes championship runner-up Wings Of Royalty are among the trotters in the first division of the International Stallion Stakes. Shoot The Thrill, who won a division of the Arden Downs, is in the second split. Uncle Lasse, a full brother to standout 3-year-old female trotter Shake It Cerry and a Bluegrass division winner last week, is in the fourth division. The fifth division finds Peter Haughton Memorial champion Centurion ATM and Bluegrass division winner The Bank, plus Whom Shall I Fear, a full brother to star 3-year-old male trotter Father Patrick. Friday's card at The Red Mile also includes three divisions of International Stallion Stakes for 2-year-old female pacers. by Ken Weingartner/Harness Racing Communications/USTA
WASHINGTON, PA, Sept. 29, 2014 -- Weeper, Pennsylvania's champion 3-year-old filly pacer, performed like a champion Monday at The Meadows when she rolled to a stake record 1:51 in a division of a $90,000 Keystone Classic. Katie Said and Do Your Job took the event's other divisions, each in 1:51.4 -- the stake record until Weeper smashed it. Weeper was let go at 11-1 in the PA Sires Stake final, but the public displayed no ambivalence about her chances Monday, hammering her down to 1-5. The daughter of Allamerican Native-Pleasant Yet Bad, who extended her career bankroll to $392,888, charged to the front for Dave Palone and defeated Stucklikeglue by 1-1/4 lengths geared down. Fancy Desire was third. Because Weeper is still relatively fresh -- only 11 starts this year -- winning trainer Kelly O'Donnell said her owner, Joe Thomson's Bay Pond Racing Stable, may consider supplementing her to this weekend's Glen Garnsey at The Red Mile. "She's only raced twice in the last 13 weeks," O'Donnell said. "We hit a couple of bumps in the road, and we had to give her a little time. She's not a horse you can race every week, but she doesn't take a whole lot of work either. We'll have to see how she comes out of this." Although Katie Said has won nine of 16 outings this year, she hadn't been in front at the quarter in any of her last six races. She extended that streak Monday, moving to the lead past the quarter for Marcus Miller and downing Lasting Appeal by 2-1/2 lengths. Someislandsomwhere earned show. "Earlier in the year, she had breaking problems," Marcus Miller said. "Everybody knew it, and she wasn't a pretty breaker, so they were often trying to leave around her. So it just worked out she learned how to race from behind. She absolutely will run down good mares." Julie Miller trains the daughter of Well Said-Katies Lucky Lady, who now has banked $192,926, for Andy Miller Stable and Black Horse Racing. Do Your Job hadn't raced since Aug. 29, but Brian Zendt gave her a ground-saving trip, and she found the Lightning Lane in time to upset 3-5 favorite Also Encouraging by a nose. Early leader Cinamony completed the ticket. Tom Fanning conditions the daughter of Western Terror-Tootsie J for Fly By Night Stables and David Van Wart. "I was a little worried when I saw she'd been off for awhile," said Zendt, who drove three winners on the 16-race card. "Tom called me and said she was ready, give her a shot, so we did. She's a pleasure to drive. She did it easily." $71,200 Keystone Classic -- 3-Year-old Filly Trotters The program also featured a $71,200 Keystone Classic for sophomore filly trotters, with Donatella Hanover and Cantabs Fortune capturing the splits. Donatella Hanover was in her customary spot -- fifth down the backside -- when she moved with authority for Brett Miller, gobbling up the leaders and triumphing in 1:55.3, 3/4 lengths better than the fast-closing Steppin Out. Broadway Socks, who lacked late racing room, finished third. "I think she's better from off the pace; that's why I choose to race her that way," Brett Miller said. "I put her on the front once, and I didn't like her there. She waited on them. She's so well mannered that she never looks like she has a whole lot of trot, but when you pull her, she goes." The daughter of Cantab Hall-On the Glide has earned $143,146 for trainer Jimmy Takter and owner Christinatakterandthekids. Cantabs Fortune, a smallish filly, raced big after quarter-poling to the front for David Miller, trainer Rick Zeron and owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion and Ferme Rico Limitee. She prevailed in a career-best 1:54.2, 4-1/2 lengths better than Outsourced Hanover, with Travelin Dream third. "She's real handy, trots all the time," David Miller said. "And she can go some. I figured I could get back to the lead pretty easy. Everything went smooth." Tuesday's card at The Meadows features a pair of Keystone Classics for 3-year-old colts and geldings -- an $83,400 pace and an $81,200 trot. First post is 12:55 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows
LEXINGTON, KY-- Freshmen colt trotters occupied the Friday night card at The Red Mile, with four divisions of the $396,000 Bluegrass Stakes contested on September 26. Habitat and The Bank put in the quickest miles of the four divisions contested. William Wellwood champion Habitat once again reigned supreme, this time by Â¾ lengths over Honor And Serve and Cruzado Dela Noche in 1:53.4. The early tempo setter was Honor And Serve, leading Canappealformore and Habitat through a :28.2 first quarter. Yannick Gingras soon gave Habitat the cue to circle by his foes, clearing the field slightly after a :57.4 (:29.2) half. Boots N Chains gradually progressed to Habitat's wheel around the far turn. Habitat, through three-quarters in 1:26.3 (:28.4), began to draw away from his competitors. Cruzado Dela Noche, traveling second over, fanned off cover and began a bid down the center of the course, while Honor And Serve snuck out of the pocket. Yet, they were runner-up as Habitat held on in a lifetime-best of 1:53.4 (:27.1). A son of Conway Hall-Habit's Best-Muscles Yankee, he's owned by Burke Racing Stable, Out Horse Cents Stables and Weaver Bruscemi, trained by Ron Burke and driven by Yannick Gingras. "I think he was as sharp, but he was maybe too sharp," Yannick Gingras said in regards to Habitat's margin of victory. "He was a little keen tonight. Usually, he lets me do what I want with him. He's usually two fingers to drive, but he was a little wound up tonight, and I think that cost him a little bit of energy. "Coming to the top of the stretch, I knew I had a big last quarter left in him, but Honor and Serve and that horse Dave was driving [Cruzado Dela Noche] are two quality horses as well. He was 1-5, but it was no 'gimme,' there was good horses in here." Pulling first over nearing the half, The Bank gradually grew closer to the front and eventually passed Piercewave Hanover in a 1:53.4 mile. Sent for the top was One Direction, with Piercewave Hanover taking the pocket. Past the quarter in :28.3, Piercewave Hanover swept to the top. Yannick Gingras tried to ration his speed as he trotted the half-mile in :56.2 (:27.4). Around the far turn, The Bank began to charge towards pacesetter. He remained 3 lengths off the lead through a 1:25.1 (:28.4) third quarter. Shortening in stride, Piercewave Hanover's lead slowly diminished. The Bank was rallying down the center of the track and went by Piercewave Hanover in the final strides to win by a Â½ length in 1:53.4 (:28.3), a lifetime best. Earning $64,810 this season, the son of Donato Hanover-Lantern Kronos-Viking Kronos is owned by Christina Takter and Goran Falk and is trained and driven by Jimmy Takter. Sent off the public choice, he paid $4.80 to win. "I know my horse is extremely honest and I haven't used him at all," Jimmy Takter said. "I kind of got a little bit messed up at the start; I didn't want to rush him out of the gate. He can leave very good, but I just felt like I wanted to race him from behind because he's not really sharp enough for cutting it." Southwind Stryker defeated Peter Haughton winner Centurion Atm in a 1:53.4 effort. The lead was occupied by Walter White, who led Whataworkout, Mercury Fashion, Centurion Atm, and Southwind Stryker respectively past a :28.3 first quarter. He remained in control through a :57.3 (:29) half, but Centurion Atm was grinding towards him first over. Southwind Stryker tracked Centurion ATM around the far turn as he battled with Walter White for control. After a 1:26 (:28.2) third quarter, Centurion ATM gained control. Centurion ATM was trying to gain separation from Southwind Stryker, but instead began to brace for his challenge. The two were stride for stride in the final hundred yards and at the line, Southwind Stryker had a nose on Centurion ATM, with Wicker Hanover finishing fourth, but placed third due to a lapped-on break by third-place finisher, placed fourth, Whataworkout. The son of Muscle Hill-Soxeelady-Conway Hall paid $10 as he triumphed over the 1/5 favorite. He's owned by Brad Maxwell, Paul Van Camp, Herb Liverman, and, trained by Brad Maxwell, and was driven by Tim Tetrick. Breaking his maiden, Southwind Stryker established a lifetime best of 1:53.4, and has earned $99,641 lifetime. "That horse that I was following [Centurion Atm] has some go," driver Tim Tetrick said. "My horse has been racing, and his [Ake Svanstedt's] horse had a big break and only one qualifier, but my horse had to earn it. If I had been third over, it would have been tough to catch him, but the trip worked out perfectly." Billy Flynn remained undefeated after a game stretch battle with 8/5 second-choice Muscle Diamond, traveling wire-to-wire in 1:55.4. Taking the lead was Gabe The Bear Dean as the octet trotted into the first turn. Billy Flynn tracked him from second, with Suit And Tie traveling third. Pilot Brett Miller gave the cue for Billy Flynn to circle by the 30-1 shot, clearing control in a :29.2 first quarter. Billy Flynn turned the march to the half into a stroll, reaching that station in :58.1 (:29.4). Suit And Tie broke from third, causing confusion with Progression and Muscle Diamond. Regardless, Muscle Diamond began his charge towards favored Billy Flynn entering the far turn. The two hooked up to duel at three-quarters in 1:28.3 (:30.2). The battling Billy Flynn and Muscle Diamond edged 3 lengths clear of Progression trotting in third. As Muscle Diamond appeared to get a nose in front, Billy Flynn fought back at the inside and managed, not only to retake the lead, but extend his margin of victory to a length over Muscle Diamond in 1:55.4 (:27.1). A $2.80 winner, Billy Flynn, a son of Cantab Hall-Zeta Jones-Enjoy Lavec, is owned by Bender Sweden Inc., trained by Staffan Lind and driven by Brett Miller. He has now earned $312,057 this season. "He's done everything right so far," trainer Staffan Lind said. "I hope he can stay on track. It's a long season with a lot of races, so whenever you can steal one is good." Uncle Lasse, a full-brother to Dan Patch champion Shake It Cerry, was victorious in 1:54.1 over Guess Whos Back. Getting away In The Pocket, Uncle Lasse soon pulled two wide and circled around early pacesetter Iron. After a quarter in :28.2, Uncle Lasse cleared the front. He was uncontested through a :57.3 (:29.1) half and strolled to three-quarters in 1:27 (:29.2). Sugarmakesmecrazy began to pursuit Uncle Lasse, with Guess Whos Back following second over. Guess Whos Back managed to swing off his cover and take second, while Sugarmakesmecrazy chased in third. Uncle Lasse won by a length in 1:54.1 (:27.1), a lifetime best. Owned by Solveig's Racing Partners, trained by Jimmy Takter, and driven by Ron Pierce, he paid $4.60 to win. He has earned $203,279 this season. "He was super sharp, a little on edge," Ron Pierce said. "He's good feeling colt, a little edgy, but his gait was flawless and he had plenty of trot." Racing resumes on Saturday, September 27 with the $331,000 Bluegrass for two-year-old colt pacers, $185,200 Bluegrass for three-year-old colt pacers, and the $146,600 Bluegrass for three-year-old filly pacers. Post time is scheduled for 7:00pmEDT. Race replays can be found on The Red Mile's YouTube channel: Red Mile Harness. By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile
ANDERSON, Ind.-September 20, 2014 - Master of Law pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the season as he was able to wear down the overwhelmingly favored, Sebastian K, late in the stretch to win the $238,500 Centaur Trotting Classic at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, September 20. Driven by trainer Jimmy Takter, Master of Law was able to close off cover to win at 21-1 in 1:54.2 over a track rated good. Sebastian K and driver, trainer Ake Svenstadt left alertly from post six but would have to work for position as Creatine and Trace Tetrick left aggressively to get the first call around the opening turn in :27. Their lead would be short lived as Sebastian K pressed on to the lead and reached the front just before the half mile time in :55.4. With a target on his back, Sebastian K would once again have to work for position as the outer flow quickly began to form. Verlin Yoder had Natural Herbie out and firing down the backside and was forcing the issue first-over approaching the final turn with Master of Law in tow. As the field began to tighten, Sebastian K still called the shots around the three-quarter clocking in 1:24.4 but the taxing trip began to take its toll. Sebastian K was able to fend off Natural Herbie but Master of Law loomed large in the background. Tipping three-wide late in the lane, Master of Law surged passed his rivals and coasted to the wire to finish two lengths in front of Creatine. Natural Herbie held on gamely to round out the trifecta while Sebastian K faded late in the stretch to finish seventh. Dismissed at the betting windows, Master of Law returned $44.00 for the victory. "We got away decent, obviously the track was a little sticky but everything worked out in my favor," Takter noted in the winner's circle. "The track favored my horse a little more versus my other horse in the field (Uncle Peter) who was not shod for this track. This is a nice horse. He's developing all the time and he can play with these guys." Master of Law who has now won three of six seasonal outings is owned by Lindy Racing Stable, Brittany Farms, Adam Victor & Son, and Christina Takter. The gelded son of Deweycheatumnhowe-Posses The Magic has now won nine of 17 lifetime outings and pushed his career bankroll to $331,753. "My owners wanted me to drive this horse," Takter continued. "He is kind of a one man show, you can't rush him. I've only had him for a little while but I really like this horse. He's only four and he is staked to everything, so We Will See." Master of Law Takter also scored another training win on the 14-race card with his two-year-old trotting filly Speak To Me in one of two divisions of the $154,150 Kentuckiana Stallion Management. With driver Brett Miller in the bike, Speak To Me recovered from a break in the final turn to stop the timer in 1:55.2, a new track record at Hoosier Park for two-year-old trotting fillies. The second division of Kentuckiana Stallion Management stakes action for freshman trotting fillies went to Livininthefastlane and driver Tim Tetrick in 1:56. Trained by Julie Miller, the daughter of Donato Hanover-Nicole's Promise was able to score from off the pace to record her third win of the season. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Tuesday, September 23 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., the live racing schedule will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 15. Emily Gaskin
With smart and calculated drives by Yannick Gingras, Limelight Beach won the prestigious Little Brown Jug at Delaware, Ohio Thursday in straight heats. In order to win the Little Brown Jug a horse must win two heats on one day to be declared the winner. Both Let’s Drink On It and Limelight Beach won their elimination divisions and earned posts two and one respectively in the final and they both made the most of their post positions. Gingras left quickly with Limelight Beach with Let’s Drink On It (Tyler Smith) dropping right in behind him in second place. They went to the half mile marker in an easy :57 and then the action started to begin. Somewhere In L A and driver Brett Miller came first-over and gave outside cover to Beat The Drum but it was McWicked and driver David Miller in sixth place on the outside who had the crowd on their feet as they tried to loop the field three-wide at the three-quarters in 1:23. Then on the final turn for home, Gingras looked behind him, saw Let’s Drink On It right on his helmet and backed his horse up so that when they started down the stretch, Tyler Smith would have no room to get loose with Let’s Drink on it and the tactic worked perfectly. Once starting down the stretch, Gingras urged his horse home and they won by one and one-half lengths in 1:50.4. Let’s Drink On It could find no room and was a strong second with Somewhere In L A third. Oddly, today was the first time this year after 12 starts that Limelight Beach had won a race and then to cap it off winning the Little Brown Jug in straight heats. Sired by Somebeachsomewhere, Limelight Beach is trained by Ron Burke and is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, the M1 Stable and Wingfield Brothers. He paid $4.00 to win. They had purchased Limelight Beach earlier this season and prior owners, Charles Wingfield and his brother, stayed on as co-owners. “We just had too much fun with his last year,” said Charles Wingfield, “And we stayed through this race right here. It’s amazing. I can’t believe it.” “I had two great horses to drive in the Jug today,” Yannick Gingras said. “People asked me who I liked better and I said Lyonssomewhere over Limelight Beach, but this horse came up huge today. He went two big heats today.” “We kinda got lucky in the first heat,” Gingras said, “but in the second heat he was tremendous, he was scary. I was looking at the program and I know there was not a lot of speed in the race and my horse the people had to respect his speed. Tyler’s (Smith) horse got out of the gate better than I thought. I kept my horse moving along. I did not want to go slow and he put in an awesome performance. Let’s Drink On It takes first heat of Jug Harness racing driver and 21-year-old local native, Tyler Smith, took Let’s Drink On It three-wide in the backstretch and was able to grind it out to win the $103,600 first heat of the Little Brown Jug. The race began with Lyonssomewhere (Yannick Gingras) shooting right to the lead from the start of the race with At Press Time (Matt Kakaley) grabbing the pocket seat. They raced that way past the opening quarter in :26.4. Then going to the half mile marker in an easy :54.4, Beat The Drum (Ron Pierce) came first-over to challenge and following his cover on the outside was Let’s Drink On It and Tyler Smith. Once they hit the backstretch, Smith moved three-wide with Let’s Drink On It and after the three-quarters in 1:23, had cleared past Beat The Drum and was coming after pacesetter Lyonssomewhere. Then half way around the final turn, Let’s Drink On It had collared Lyonssomewhere when Gingras’s horse went off-stride and had to be pulled off to the inside as Let’s Drink On It shied to the outside and Matt Kakaley with At Press Time just avoided Lyonssomewhere. Let’s Drink On It was able to regroup right away and Tyler Smith urged him on home to win by one and one-half lengths over At Press Time with Beat The Drum third and also making the final was On Golden Ponder (John Campbell) in fourth place. Let’s Drink On It covered the one mile race in 1:51 and at odds of 3-1 paid $8.80 to win. “He was good today,” Smith said, this horse ain’t got a real lot of gate speed. The way it lined up I figured I would be third or fourth and have to come first-over. But luckily Ron (Pierce) came out first and we were able to get a little cover until the backside. I was able to crossover by the last turn, but Yannick’s (Gringras) horse, I don’t know if I could have beaten him but we were gonna take a good crack at him. “I am happy to win,” Smith said, “and to be in the big race. It would mean the world to me to win this race. I would give back all the races I have won just to win the Jug.” Sired by Art Official, Let’s Drink On It is trained by Joe Seekman and is owned by Tina Seekman, L. Bond, H. Hewitt and V. Boido, Jr. Limelight Beach takes second Jug elimination Limelight Beach picked the perfect spot to win his first race of the 2014 season in 13 tries, capturing the $103,600 second heat of the Little Brown Jug. Given a masterful drive by Yannick Gingras, Limelight Beach was able to sit and draft in second place behind pacesetter and 3/5 favorite McWicked and driver David Miller. They went in Indian-style to the opening quarter in :27 and then easy half mile in :55.2 before the action began to heat up. Somewhere In L A and driver Brett Miller came first-over with He’s Watching (Tim Tetrick) following the outside flow to the three-quarters in 1:22.4. Then Somewhere In L A and McWicked were ready to lock horses down the stretch but it was Gingras with Limelight Beach, pulling off the rail, sweeping three-wide and looping both horse to win by a half length in 1:51. Somewhere In L A was second with McWicked third and Sometimes Said (John Campbell) fourth and making it to the Jug second heat. Trained by Ron Burke, Limelight Beach is sired by Somebeachsomewhere and is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, the M1 Stable and Wingfield Brothers. He paid $12.00 to win. “Everyone is supporting trainer Brian Brown this week,” trainer Ron Burke said, “and we are just reaping the rewards from his work as we got this colt from him. Horse was good today. We knew he was better than the other colt we have in. Having the other horse (At Press Time) in the final too is great. Yannick (Gingras) thinks we can get to the lead easy. We have won two Jugette’s and hopefully we can finally win the Jug.” By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink.com
Classic Martine and driver Tim Tetrick faced four other world champions and went right to the lead and never looked back en route to a 1:54.1 triumph in the $121,000 final of the Ms Versatility for older trotting mares. Tetrick made the best use of the rail starting point on a half mile track and shot out to the early lead with Maven (Yannick Gingras) getting the two-hole trip to the opening quarter mile in :27.3. Then to the half mile marker in an easy :57 saw Classic Martine face her first challenge as Ma Chere Hall (David Miller) started up first-over and Bee A Magician (Brian Sears) was able to grab the second-over live cover. They raced down the backstretch and after the three-quarters in 1:25.1, Sears sent Bee A Magician three-wide and make it a three horse fight to the finish down the stretch. Classic Martine would have no part of that as she dug in and held on to win by a half length in 1:54.1. A late closing Charmed Life (Brett Miller) was second with Maven third. It was the ninth win this year for Classic Martine. The four-year-old mare by Classic Photo is trained by Chris Oakes and is owned by Hauser Brothers Racing, Susan Oakes, C. Zurich and Edwin Gold. She paid $5.60 to win. “She raced really well,” said trainer Chris Oaks, “She is a very good mare and has a great season. Last week at Chester she had the 8-hole blues, but she bounced back quick. Everyone know my mare can leave like a runner. She real good on her feet and that it would take someone special to beat her out of the gate.” By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink.com
Four world champions meet in Thursday's $121,500 Miss Versatility Series championship for older female trotters at the Delaware County Fair in central Ohio. The group is led by Bee A Magician, who was the 2013 Horse of the Year in both the U.S. and Canada, and Classic Martine, who has won this year's Armbro Flight Stakes and two preliminary divisions of the Miss Versatility Series. The two horses share the world record of 1:51.1 for the fastest winning time by a 4-year-old trotting mare on a mile racetrack. Classic Martine also shares the world record of 1:51.2 for the fastest victory by a female trotter of any age on a five-eighths-mile racetrack. She shares the mark with her stablemate, and Miss Versatility contender, Frau Blucher. And then there is Maven. Last year, she won the Miss Versatility Series championship with a 1:51.4 triumph at Delaware. The time established the world record for fastest race mile ever by any trotter, male or female, on a half-mile oval. Only Cash Hall's time-trial 1:51.1 time, recorded at Delaware in 2006, is faster than Maven's race time. A day before Maven made history, Frau Blucher set the world record of 1:53.1 for the fastest win by any 3-year-old trotter on a half-mile track at Delaware. "It's a very deep group, for sure," said Chris Oakes, who trains Classic Martine and Frau Blucher. "I think we've got a very good chance. Both horses are doing well right now and drew well, which is important there. (But) I think probably the horse to beat is Bee A Magician." Classic Martine drew post No. 1 and is the 2-1 morning line favorite with driver Tim Tetrick. She has won eight of 12 races and $246,732 this year. Last season, she shared the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship for 3-year-old female trotters with Frau Blucher - finishing in a dead heat for win with her stablemate in the final - and was second to Bee A Magician in the Hambletonian Oaks. The mare is owned by Hauser Brothers Racing, Susan Oakes, Conrad Zurich and Ed Gold. "She had time off and she matured good and has come back a better horse than last year," Oakes said. "She's a little bigger, a little stronger, and the mental toughness is definitely there this year." Frau Blucher, who finished second to Bee A Magician in last year's Breeders Crown, will start from post four with driver Ron Pierce and is 10-1. She has won one of seven races this year, but is approaching $1 million in lifetime earnings for owners Hauser Brothers Racing, Susan Oakes and Matt Tudisco. Bee A Magician, trained by Nifty Norman, was unbeaten in 17 races last season and has won three of 10 starts this year. She finished second to male rivals in the Hambletonian Maturity and fourth against the sport's top open trotters in the Crawford Farms Trot. In fact, her most recent three starts were against the boys, with her winning an open at Yonkers and a conditioned handicap at Harrah's Philadelphia. She won a division of the Miss Versatility by a neck over Charmed Life in her world-record 1:51.1 performance. Three weeks later, she lost by a neck to Classic Martine in the Ima Lula final in the same time. Bee A Magician is owned by Mel Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee. She has won 30 of 40 career races and $2.52 million. She starts the Miss Versatility from post six with driver Brian Sears and is 5-2. Maven, who received the 2013 Dan Patch Award for best older female trotter, has won two of eight races this year. She opened her campaign with a win in the Miami Valley Distaff and then went to Sweden for the Elitlopp Invitational, where she finished third in her elimination and sixth in the final. On Aug. 23, she beat male foes in the preferred handicap at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and in her most recent start she finished fifth in the final preliminary round of the Miss Versatility at Tioga Downs. The race was won by Charmed Life in 1:52.2 - the fastest mile ever trotted at the track. "It's really a deep, deep division," said Yannick Gingras, who drives Maven. "In the past, there's always been a standout in that division, but there isn't one right now. Imagine if Maven was to just step up a little and be the horse that she was last year, it would be some scary good trotting mares going at each other every week. It's great for the sport." Maven, trained by Jonas Czernyson, who has three horses in Thursday's Miss Versatility, has won 27 of 48 career races and $1.48 million for owner Bill Donovan. Last year, she finished fifth in her start prior to the Miss Versatility championship at Delaware. Gingras is hoping history can repeat itself with a bounce-back winning performance again this season. "Jonas told me that she's had an unbelievable two weeks since that start at Tioga and he really believes he's got her in peak form right now," Gingras said. "I'm going to go behind the gate with the mindset that she's one of the horses to beat and I'm going to race her that way. Hopefully Jonas is right." Following is the Miss Versatility field in post order with drivers, trainers, and morning line: 1. Classic Martine, Tim Tetrick, Chris Oakes, 2-1; 2. D'Orsay, Corey Callahan, Jonas Czernyson, 6-1; 3. Ma Chere Hall, David Miller, Jonas Czernyson, 12-1; 4. Frau Blucher, Ron Pierce, Chris Oakes, 10-1; 5. Maven, Yannick Gingras, Jonas Czernyson, 4-1; 6. Bee A Magician, Brian Sears, R. Nifty Norman, 5-2; 7. Charmed Life, Brett Miller, Dave Menary, 8-1. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications
Post No. 7 proved lucky for Lyonssomewhere in the Cane Pace and his connections will hope for the same good fortune Thursday when the colt starts from the same spot in his first-round elimination heat in the Little Brown Jug at the Delaware County Fair. The outside post positions at Delaware's half-mile oval are historically regarded as difficult starting spots, but driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Jimmy Takter are hopeful that Lyonssomewhere can overcome the draw. The colt, who supplemented into the race thanks to his victory in the Cane Pace, is the 5-2 favorite in his heat. A total of 16 3-year-old male pacers entered the $647,500 Little Brown Jug, presented by Fazoli's, but the number was reduced to 15 on Tuesday when Cammikey scratched because of illness. The field was divided into two first-heat elimination divisions and the top four finishers from each group will advance to the second round. If a first-heat winner also is victorious in the second heat, he is declared the Little Brown Jug champion. If not, there will be a race off between the three winners of the heats. "He ended up, on paper anyway, in a little softer division than the others," said Takter, who won the Little Brown Jug in 2006 with Mr Feelgood. "What are you going to do? "The horse is in good form. We'll give it a try." Gingras was able to put Lyonssomewhere in front early in the Cane Pace at five-eighths-mile Tioga Downs and held off favorite He's Watching by a half-length for the win. "In the Cane, I wasn't planning on leaving," Gingras said. "It's not like I had him wound up. He looped them, but I went to the gate thinking I was going to race him from off the pace. The gate was picking up speed and no one was leaving, he's a very handy horse, and I just had to put the whip on his tail and he went. "In the Jug, from post seven, I'll wind him up a little bit. He can leave a little faster than he did in the Cane. There's no doubt the plan is to go forward and I'll make my mind up in the first turn." Lyonssomewhere has won five of nine races this year and earned $370,892 for owner Geoffrey Lyons Mound. The horse wasn't eligible to the Little Brown Jug, but the conditions allow the winner of the Cane Pace to supplement to the Jug for $45,000. The Cane Pace is the first leg in the Pacing Triple Crown, the Jug is the second. Since supplements were first allowed in 1999, three horses have used that route to enter the Jug field: Four Starzzz Shark in 2001, Art Official in 2008, and Betterthancheddar in 2011. All three finished third in the Jug. "I think (Lyonssomewhere) has got a great chance," said Gingras, who is North America's leading purse-earning driver and is seeking his first Jug. "It would be awesome to win it. This is a race everyone wants to win. With the fans there, it's a different atmosphere. The Jug is different than any other race. It's been a great year for me and it would add to what an unbelievable year it's been." The last horse to win the Pacing Triple Crown was No Pan Intended in 2003. The third and final leg, the Messenger Stakes, will be raced on Oct. 25 at Yonkers Raceway. Lyonssomewhere is not Takter's only chance to win the Jug. He sends out Capital Account and Somewhere In L A in the second division of opening-round heats. Capital Account starts from post four with driver Ron Pierce and is 10-1 on the morning line. Somewhere In L A starts from post six with driver Brett Miller at odds of 7-2. The favorite in the elimination is Casie Coleman's McWicked, who drew post No. 1 and is the 7-5 choice. Somewhere In L A has won six of 15 races this year and earned $301,502 for owners Deo Volente Farms, J&T Silva Stables, and T L P Stable. The gelding finished second to McWicked in the Delvin Miller Adios. "He's a very good horse," Takter said about Somewhere In L A, adding with a laugh, "He's been consistently racing against McWicked, and McWicked has got to be the luckiest horse I ever saw at getting a good post position. We have six or seven and McWicked has all these good posts. "But he's been racing gamely. I'm really proud of him. This race is going to be interesting. Hopefully they're going to mix it up a little bit and there will be some action." Capital Account has won four of 16 races this season and earned $114,744. He is owned by Brittany Farms. "If he would have been in the other division, he would have had a better shot to make the final," Takter said. "He's a quick little horse. He's a good horse. But in that division, it's tough. He's a longshot." Following are the first-round elimination heats for the Little Brown Jug in post order with drivers, trainers, and morning line odds. Elim One: 1. Let's Drink On It, Tyler Smith, Joe Seekman, 5-1; 2. Winds Of Change, Brett Miller, Linda Toscano, 8-1; 3. Three Of Clubs, Doug McNair, Gregg McNair, 10-1; 4. On Golden Ponder, John Campbell, Bob McIntosh, 7-2; 5. At Press Time, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 8-1; 6. Beat The Drum, Ron Pierce, Staffan Lind, 15-1; 7. Lyonssomewhere, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 5-2; 8. Rediscovery, Chris Page, Ben Davis, 20-1. Elim Two: 1. McWicked, David Miller, Casie Coleman, 7-5; 2. Limelight Beach, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 6-1; 3. Avalanche Hanover, Aaron Merriman, Ron Potter, 12-1; 4. Capital Account, Ron Pierce, Jimmy Takter, 10-1; 5. Somewhere In L A, Brett Miller, Jimmy Takter, 7-2; 6. He's Watching, Tim Tetrick, Dave Menary, 5-2; 7. Sometimes Said, John Campbell, Jim Campbell, 10-1; 8. Cammikey, scratched. The Little Brown Jug brought to you by Fazoli's will air live from 5-6:30 p.m. on CBS Sports Network. The last Jug elimination heat will be shown live at approximately 5:11 p.m. The remaining elimination will be covered on a tape delay basis. The second heat of the Jug will be shown live at approximately 6:15 p.m. If a race-off is necessary, CBS Sports Network will cut into its regularly scheduled program at 7 p.m. to show the race-off live. Post time of the race-off would be approximately 7:02 p.m. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications
This Week: Delaware Grand Circuit, Delaware County Fair, Delaware, Ohio; American-National, Balmoral Park, Crete. Ill; Kindergarten Series, The Red Mile, Lexington, Ky.; Milton Stake final, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario; Centaur Trot, Kentuckiana Stallion Management and The Elevation, Hoosier Park, Anderson, Ind.; and Prix D'Ete, Hippodrome 3R, Trois-Rivieres, Quebec. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action kicks off on Wednesday (Sept. 17) at Delaware with the $298,100 Jugette for 3-year-old filly pacers, the $89,475 Buckette for 3-year-old filly trotters and two divisions in the $64,646 Standardbred for 2-year-old filly trotters. The Thursday (Sept. 18) card at Delaware is highlighted by the $647,500 Little Brown Jug, the second leg of Pacing's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds. Also on tap that day are the $121,000 Miss Versatility final for older trotting mares, the $118,300 Old Oaken Bucket for 3-year-old colt trotters, the $59,445 Standardbred for 2-year-old colt trotters, the $58,045 Standardbred for 2-year-old colt pacers and the $51,000 Standardbred for 2-year-old filly pacers. Balmoral Park will host a pair of Grand Circuit events on Wednesday with the $73,000 American-National for 2-year-old colt trotters and the $57,200 American-National for 2-year-old filly trotters. The Thursday card at The Red Mile will feature four $10,000 divisions in the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old filly trotters and three $10,000 divisions in the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old colt trotters. Grand Circuit action at Mohawk will be held on Saturday (Sept. 20) with the C$286,000 Milton Stake final for older pacing mares. Hoosier Park on Saturday will host the $250,000 (est.) Kentuckiana Stallion Management for 2-year-old filly pacers, the $225,000 (est.) Centaur for Open trotters, the $200,000 (est.) Kentuckiana Stallion Management for 2-year-old filly trotters and the $150,000 (est.) Elevation for 2-year-old colt pacers. Rounding out the busy week of Grand Circuit racing, on Sunday (Sept. 21) Hippodrome 3R will offer the C$200,000 Prix D'Ete for 4-year-old pacers, plus a C$50,000 Prix D'Ete consolation. Complete entries for the races at the U.S. tracks are available at this link. Entries for the Canadian races are available at this link. Last time: The Grand Circuit spotlight was on Mohawk Racetrack this past Saturday, with the finals of four stakes, led by the $613,800 Canadian Trotting Classic for sophomore male trotters. Father Patrick, the 1-5 choice with driver Yannick Gingras, scored a popular 1-3/4 length victory in a time of 1:52.4. Father Patrick captured the $613,800 Canadian Trotting Classic in a time of 1:52.4. Trainer Jimmy Takter held more than a strong hand going into this year's renewal for 3-year-old trotters, sending out Hambletonian winner Trixton and Father Patrick, last year's divisional champion who had been expected to win the Meadowlands showcase event in August but made an unexpected early break. The toteboard reflected that, as Father Patrick was 1-5, Trixton 9-5 when they went behind the gate, while their five rivals ranged from 18-1 to 80-1. The two favorites, both of whom had won eight of their 10 starts this year, were expected to duke it out but this time it was Trixton, driven by Takter, who went off-stride at the start to eliminate himself. It wasn't a walk in the park but the win at least put aside the nightmare of this year's Hambletonian for Father Patrick, a son of Cantab Hall-Gala Dream. Parked in fourth for the first half-mile, as Damfoolrmillionair took the field through a quarter in :26.4 and the half in :55.2, Gingras sent Father Patrick up to challenge the pacesetter, took over before the three-quarters was reached in 1:24, then powered home for the win in 1:52.4. E L Titan came on for second, with Harper Blue Chip third. The winner is owned by the Father Patrick Stable. On Monday (Sept. 15), the venerable 10-year-old pacing superstar Foiled Again (Yannick Gingras) prevailed in the eighth annual $220,000 Bobby Quillen Memorial at Harrington Raceway in 1:50.2. Foiled Again held off Clear Vision to win the Quillen Memorial in 1:50.2. Owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi and JJK Stables, Foiled Again assumed command from his rail post position just past the quarter-mile in :26.3. He led the rich field of eight, whose combined lifetime bankroll is near $15 million, to the half-mile in :55.1 and three-quarters in 1:23.1. Stablemate Clear Vision, who won the 2013 Quillen, received his marching orders from driver Brett Miller at the half-mile and battled first over but could not get closer than a half-length from Foiled Again at the wire. Bettor's Edge finished third. Foiled Again, the richest horse in harness racing history, boosted his lifetime bankroll to more than $6.6 million. It was his sixth consecutive year in Harrington's marquee event. Clear Vision was making his fourth consecutive start. Both horses are trained by Ron Burke. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2014, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2014 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,025; 2. Tim Tetrick - 583; 3. David Miller - 506.5; 4. Ron Pierce - 443.5; 5. Corey Callahan - 321. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,335.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 815; 3. Tony Alagna - 245: 4. Erv Miller - 244; 5. Ake Svanstedt - 222. Owners: 1. Burke Racing - 291.25; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 263.75; 3. 3 Brothers Stable - 187; 4. Robert Key - 185; 5. Bamond Racing - 167.5. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Lexington's historic Red Mile. There will be eight Bluegrass stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits, as well as eliminations in the Allerage for open pacers and trotters. Scioto Downs will also be hosting a Grand Circuit event, the $200,000 (est.) Jim Ewart Memorial for open pacers. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit
HARRINGTON, Del. - The venerable 10-year-old pacing superstar Foiled Again ($3.20, Yannick Gingras) prevailed in the eighth annual $220,000 Bobby Quillen Memorial Monday at Harrington Raceway in 1:50.2. A large crowd filled the Harrington grandstand, watching harness racing's heavyweights among the older horse pacing ranks battle it out on Delaware's half-mile racetrack. Owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi and JJK Stables, the 10-year-old Foiled Again assumed command from his rail post position just past the quarter mile in 26.3. He led the rich field of eight, whose combined lifetime bankroll is near $15 million, to the half mile in 55.1 and three-quarters in 1:23.1. Stable mate Clear Vision, who won the 2013 Quillen, received his marching orders from driver Brett Miller at the half mile and battled first over but could not get closer than a half length from Foiled Again at the wire. Bettor's Edge finished third. "It seems like every year, he rewrites the record books," said Gingras. "It was great to come out on top tonight." Foiled Again, the richest horse in harness racing, boosted his lifetime bankroll to more than $6.6 million. It was his sixth consecutive year in Harrington's marquee event. Clear Vision was making his fourth consecutive start. Both horses are trained by Ron Burke. The race honors the memory of the late Delaware legislator Bobby Quillen, who was a racetrack regular and always had the horsemen's best interest at heart. Quillen's sister Grace Wanda Quillen, and brothers Francis and Frank Quillen were on hand for the winner's circle presentation. In the overnight feature, John Dayton's Just A Jolt ($5.20, Victor Kirby) recorded a 1:51.1 triumph in the $17,000 Open for trainer Jim King Jr. by Matt Sparacino, for Harrington Raceway
Although he is still relatively new as an owner, Lindsey Rankin understands how rare it is to find a top racehorse. So he is trying to enjoy the ride with Lady Shadow to the fullest. Lady Shadow is among 22 horses in Wednesday's $298,100 Jugette for 3-year-old female pacers at the Delaware County Fair in Ohio. The field was divided into three eliminations, from which the top three in each will advance to the same-day final. The winner of 10 of 18 career races, Lady Shadow competes in the first elimination. She drew post No. 2 for the son-and-father team of driver Doug McNair and trainer Gregg McNair and is the 5-2 morning line favorite. Beach Gal, who is coming off a third-place finish in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship, is the 5-2 favorite in the second elimination. She starts from post four for driver Tim Tetrick and trainer Dave Menary. Gettingreadytoroll, who has won three in a row including the Simcoe Stakes and Miss New Jersey, is the 5-2 choice in the third division. She will start from post two with Yannick Gingras at the lines for trainer Jimmy Takter. Lady Shadow has earned $426,753 in her career, racing to this point only in Ontario. "We've only been in it for five years, but I think she's probably our once-in-a-lifetime horse," said Rankin, a Michigan resident who owns Lady Shadow with his wife, Connie. "So we're going to try to enjoy it. It would be nice to make the final. We have family and friends coming to see her. "She's got a lot of ability. She's a really nice filly. She's got a big heart. It's been a lot of fun." Lady Shadow won five of eight races last year, including the Battle of the Belles at Grand River Raceway, and finished second by a neck in the Ontario Sire Stakes championship. So far this season, Lady Shadow has won five of 10 starts, including the Standardbred Breeders of Ontario Association final and two preliminary divisions of the Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series. She won her elimination for the Canadian Breeders Championship by more than eight lengths in a career-best 1:49.2 on July 12 at Mohawk, but went off stride at the start of the final on a sloppy track and finished sixth. But even with the miscue, which left her trailing the early leaders by 27 lengths after the first quarter and 21 lengths at the halfway point, she missed by just 1-3/4 lengths. "We're not really sure what happened," Rankin said. "Doug said she was fumbly gaited and just started to run. Once he set her, she was fine, but he wasn't real sure what that was all about. She did that once earlier this year too. She's kind of a hot head sometimes. She's settled down as the season has gone on, but at the beginning of the year she was a lot to handle. "She's got a lot of speed, but sometimes she's hard to rate. She likes to be put up in the front, in contention, from the get-go." Rankin owned horses for three years beginning in 1979, but got out of the sport because of the demands of running a business that supplies graphic design equipment. Five years ago, he asked his then 11-year-old daughter Abby if she wanted to get a horse, and when the young girl's eyes lit up, he was back in the game. "Now we're kind of hooked back into it," said the now-retired Rankin, who owns six horses. He bought Lady Shadow for $19,000 at the Forest City Sale in Ontario. The filly is a daughter of 2008 Little Brown Jug winner Shadow Play out of the mare Lady Camella. The dam's family includes 1962 Little Brown Jug winner Lehigh Hanover as well as famed trotter Peter Volo. "I liked a lot about her; her conformation," Rankin said. "She's always been high strung. We had a lot of issues with her when she was a yearling. She was always trying to do something stupid, but we got through it all. "We've been real happy with her this year. She paces a half-mile track just as well as she does a big track, so we think she deserves a shot." Below are the elimination fields for the Jugette in post order with drivers, trainers, and morning line odds. Elim One: 1. Shell Bell, Kurt Sugg, Kurt Sugg, 12-1; 2. Lady Shadow, Doug McNair, Gregg McNair, 5-2; 3. Color's A Virgin, Trace Tetrick, Brian Brown, 4-1; 4. Southwind Silence, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 6-1; 5. Ali Blue, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 5-1; 6. Beach Body, Ron Pierce, Chris Oakes, 10-1; 7. Also Encouraging, David Miller, Casie Coleman, 7-2. Elim Two: 1. Uffizi Hanover, David Miller, Jimmy Takter, 4-1; 2. Allstar Rating, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 7-2; 3. Somethinincredible, Ron Pierce, Bob McIntosh, 8-1; 4. Beach Gal, Tim Tetrick, Dave Menary, 5-2; 5. Fits Well, Scott Zeron, Brian Brown, 12-1; 6. Gallie Bythe Beach, John Campbell, Jim Campbell, 10-1; 7. A La Notte Hanover, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 8-1; 8. Sectionline Aqua, Brett Miller, Steve Bauder, 5-1. Elim Three: 1. Cut A Deal, Jim Pantaleano, Nick Surick, 12-1; 2. Gettingreadytoroll, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 5-2; 3. Beautiful Lady, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 5-1; 4. Someislandsomwhere, Ron Pierce, Casie Coleman, 6-1; 5. Candy's A Virgin, Trace Tetrick, Brian Brown, 4-1; 6. Sandbetweenurtoes, Brett Miller, Larry Remmen, 7-2; 7. Beach Story, David Miller, Kelvin Harrison, 8-1. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications