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Morosita Bi (Jim Meittinis) wins the featured harness racing trot ($9,000), on Saturday night (August 12) at Tioga Downs. Can Do (Scott Coulter) would charge out to lead and own all the early fractions :28.3, :58.3, 1:27.1. Morosita Bi (Equinox Bi), who was the only mare in the race would follow from the the pocket. Leased and trained by Bruce Clarke, the 7 year-old would charge out of the pocket and take the lead at the top of the stretch. Morosita Bi ($6.90) would win her fourth straight in a time of 1:56.1. It was her 37th career victory. Can Do would hang on for second with Bjanthony (Mickey McNichol) taking third. Mike Merton would win three on the night. He would have victories with Heart Crusher $7.30), Grey Ice ($38.60), and A Crown For Lindy (3.10). "Megatoad" beats "Jaws". The Chicken Spiedie Eating Championship was held in a poring rain at Tioga (August 12). The rain didn't dampen the competitors. Spiedie eating world record holder, Matt "Megatoad" Stonie beat his own record by eating 25 and a half spidies and beating arch rival and Coney Island Hot Dog eating champion Joey "Jaws" Chestnut. Tioga Downs returns to live action Sunday afternoon (August 13) with a 15 race card starting at 1pm. There will be a non-betting race at 12:45. The card features the Empire Breeders Classic eliminations for both sophomore pacing fillies and eliminations for their counterpart, colts and geldings. Also on the card is NYSS freshman trotting fillies. For more information go to John Horne for Tioga Downs

Saturday nights Cal Expo harness racing program features a $53,142 carryover in the 10-cent Jackpot 6, meaning one ticket could come away with an awfully sweet payoff. The Jackpot 6 is one of four wagers on the program that come with a reduced 16% takeout rate. The others are the Hi-5, which like the Jackpot 6 is a 10-cent minimum bet; the 50-cent Pick 5; and the 20-cent Pick 4, which has a $25,000-guaranteed pool. To give an example of what the reduced takeout really means, last Saturday nights Hi-5 saw the 34-1 Cosmos winning and the 19-1 Im Confident checking in second, followed home by the 7-5 Art Genta, 14-1 Chewy Baca and 6-1 Toucam Sam, triggering a $5,600 payoff for each winning 10-cent ticket. Using the normal takeout rate, it would have paid an even $5,000, a difference of $600 to each winning ticket holder. Thats not just numbers, but real dollars. Taking a closer look at the Jackpot 6, the wager finds 70% of the net pool paying out to tickets with the most winners, with 30% of the net pool designated for the carryover. If there is one unique ticket selecting six winners, the entire pool and the carryover is paid to the holder of the ticket. If that should happen Saturday night, they would receive the entire net pool and a $53142 bonus. With the 10-cent minimum, putting together healthy-sized tickets without spending a lot of money makes the Jackpot 6 even more attractive. Jump right in, the pool is going to be fine. Sire Stakes, Distaff Open have the spotlight A $10,000 California Sire Stakes for 4-year-old pacing males and a $6,000 Open Pace for fillies and mares are the main events on Saturday nights Watch and Wager LLC program at Cal Expo. A 14-race card is on tap and things get underway at 6:10 p.m. The Sire Stakes is scheduled as the fifth event on the evening, immediately followed by the Distaff Open in the sixth-race slot. King Of The Crop, Rikybrnthegaragdwn and Laissez Moi Passer are all multiple trophy earners who figure to have their share of backers in the Sire Stakes. King Of The Crop was third in the most recent stakes clash for this group back on January 17 and is coming into this assignment off back-to-back conditioned scores. The Little Steven homebred carries the banner of Frank Nevarez with Gordie Graham training and Bruce Clarke guiding from the cozy rail slot. He established his lifetime mark of 1:53 2/5 on February 20 and came right back with another sharp tally last weekend. Rikybrnthegaragdwn is a son of Living It Up out of the top racemare and producer Sports Bra who races for Maryann Plano and Nikki Hudson with Luke Plano reining and training. His most recent victory came in the February 7 Shelly Goudreau, where he romped home and established a new mark with his 1:52 4/5 tour of the oval. Laissez Moi Passer was posing for pictures after upsetting his peers in the most recent Sire Stakes for this group in January. Sal and Georgette Wenceslao own the son of Disco Devil with Sal the conditioner and Williams Hernandez in his usual spot in the sulky. Completing the field are Lil Steve Oneder with Chip Lackey at the controls; Tony Cheesecake, who will have the services of James Kennedy; and Full Moon Rising, who leaves from the outside post with Dave Siegel handling the lines. By Mark Ratzky, Publicity Cal Expo Harness

Those who remembered that Vari Forgetful was once a very good trotting mare have been rewarded to the tune of 58-1 and 14-1, respectively, in her last two trips to the post for harness racing driver/trainer Bruce Clarke. The 6-year-old homebred daughter of Armbro Variable carries the banner of Jack Coffey and has over $105,000 in her bank account with a 1:56 4/5 mark that was established at Pompano Park two years ago. That said, she did come into her January 11 assignment off a series of less-than-stellar efforts and had the 9 post to boot that night. No problem, as Vari Forgetful left into a stalking position and motored by everyone for the $119 shocker. Last week from the cozy rail, she did a curtain call at nearly 15-1 under Clarkes direction, again winning easily. Shes always been a very nice mare, but just like last year, it took her awhile to come around at this meet, her mentor noted. It was actually my fault the first couple of starts here because I should have changed her shoeing, then the race before her first win she had the second tier and got run into and lost any chance. Even though she had the 9 hole for that race two back, she had been training very well and were able to leave into a good spot. She finished strongly, and no question it helped that was in pretty cheap. While the 58-1 odds that evening didnt seem out of line, Bruce did say he was surprised she was such a big number in last weeks outing, especially considering she was moving from the 9 slot to the rail. I told the owner I thought she couldnt get beat in there because she was definitely back to her old self, Clarke said. With the inside, the plan was to float out of there and sit in the two or the three hole, and thats exactly how it worked out. El Azteca, Its Not Over head marquee El Azteca and Its Not Over, who have divided up the eight clashes at the head of their class at this meeting, are spotlighted in Fridays Open Trot. A 10-race card is on tap with first post at 6:40 p.m. and racing will be conducted this week under the Watch and Wager LLC banner on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. A reminder that through the month of January, the guarantee on the low-takeout Pick 4 has been raised to $30,000. The Pick 4 is one of four wagers offered each night with the reduced 16% takeout rate, the others being the Pick 5, the Jackpot 6 and the Hi 5. El Azteca has prevailed in the last two Open Trots for his owner/trainer/breeder Marco Rios and pilot James Kennedy. He comes into this assignment with $134,000 with a 1:54 3/5 career standard that was established last year at Hoosier Park in Indiana. In the most recent clash, El Azteca left into a stalking position for Kennedy, brushed to the lead turning for home and proved clearly best by two and a half lengths that evening. He has been assigned the outside slot in the field of five. Its Not Over is 5-year-old son of Panama Hanover who carries the banner of Richard Dryden and Debra Budahn with Bob Johnson the conditioner and Chip Lackey in his usual position in the sulky. Its Not Over made his most recent trip to the winners circle following the December 27 Open Trot, lost his best chance with an early break in the next appearance and then checked in second behind his arch-rival at most recent asking. Winsom Kelly, A Crown For Lindy and Franks Best complete the field. By Mark Ratzky, publicity Cal Expo Harness                

The first Sire Stakes of the meeting saw King Of The Crop picking up right where he left off during the spring, posing for pictures as he added another harness racing trophy to the mantle for his owner/breeder Frank Nevarez. The 3-year-old pacing son of Little Steven, who is now conditioned by Gordie Graham, was driven for the first time in evening action by Bruce Clarke and got the job done in game, first-over fashion despite making his initial start since late June at Balmoral Park. I got King Of The Crop at the end of August, Graham informed. Hes a nice, quiet and laid back horse with a touch of class. I was able to get two qualifiers into him and then he was going to make a start before the stakes, but he had a little mucus and we had to scratch. Despite missing a start that could have had him nice and tight for the stakes engagement, King Of The Crop did not disappoint his many backers while prevailing by a length over Tony Cheesecake in last weeks stakes clash. I was actually surprised so many horses fired out of there at the start, but the quarter was only :29, Gordie said. Bruce said he didnt want to go to the front, so he was pretty patient with him in the early going. It all worked out. Graham, who currently has 10 performers for Nevarez, is looking ahead with this pacer and likes what he sees. There are three more Sire Stakes races, but theyre somewhat spread out so well be racing him sparingly. I think he could turn out to be a very nice horse down the road. In the meantime, there are three more big-money races for this division to be contested, and theres no question the one they have to beat. Open Pace brings out St Lads Lotto St Lads Lotto, who has rattled off three straight victories while steadily working his way up the class ladder, puts that streak on the line in Saturday nights $6,000 Open Pace at Cal Expo. A 12-race card is on tap with first post set for 6:10. A reminder that the trotters and pacers are now in action on Saturday and Sunday nights, with Friday racing being added to the schedule beginning on December 26. St Lad Lotto is a 4-year-old Ontario-bred son of Stonebridge Regal who carries the banner of Ferne and Jack Frydman, is conditioned by Mark Winnacott and will have Steve Wiseman at the controls while doing his work from the No. 6 slot in a field of 10. A 1:52 winner last season at Mohawk, the dark-hued performer had to settle for minor awards in his first two starts at this meet, but has had his picture taken three times in a row since. The most recent came two weeks ago when he rallied from last to get the job done over a sloppy track with Wiseman giving directions. Set to line up against the razor-sharp Winnacott trainee are Paydaze on the Way; Stable Eyes; China King; Mar Dream; P H Jackpot; No Gin; Rusty Skip; Cenalta Power; and A Real Miracle. Cenelta Power captured the November 15 Open Pace in an 11-1 upset in his local debut. The Alberta invader is owned, trained and driven by Ryan Grundy. He sat a tracking trip in last months score and ignited when it counted to be up by a half-length that evening for his fifth score on the season. There are now four wagers here each night that feature a reduced 16% takeout rate. They are the 50-cent Pick 5; the Jackpot 6: the Pick 4 and the Hi-5 on the nitecap. By Mark Ratzky, publicity Cal Expo Harness

Harness racing returns to Cal Expo Saturday night under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with a 14-race program on tap and a first post of 6:15 p.m. Racing will be conducted on Saturday nights in October, expanding to Saturday and Sunday programs in November. Plans then call for a three-night a week schedule beginning on December 26 with Friday racing added to the mix. Heading the opening-night card are two divisions each of the opening legs of the Bill Conlin and Annette Funicello Pacing series; an Open II event for the pacers and an Open II contest for the trotters. Robin Schadt is the new Director of Racing. My goal is to produce a racing program where every horseman gets their horses raced on a regular basis for decent money and to provide the betting public with competitive fields on which to wager, she said. Saturdays program features four wagers at a reduced 16 percent takeout, including the new 10-cent Cal Expo Jackpot Pick 6 that starts on the third race. The wager requires a single winning Pick 6 ticket, or there is a carryover. The other low-takeout wagers are the 50-cent Pick 5 that begins on the first race; the 20-cent Pick 4 that covers races 10 through 13 and comes with a $20,000-guaranteed pool; and the 10-cent Super Hi-Five on the nitecap. Taking a closer look at the Open II Trot, multiple stakes-winning I Love New York returns to California for Bruce Clarke, while the Open II Pace finds A Real Miracle heading an interesting cast as he makes his way back from Indiana for Junior Wilkinson. Luke Plano back to defend driving title Luke Plano, fresh from capturing the driving title at the winter/spring Watch and Wager LLC meeting here at Cal Expo, is back to defend the crown. At that last meet, Luke made 160 trips to the winners circle, with his nearest competitor being James Kennedy, who had 121 winning tours at that session. Both will be in action on Saturdays 14-race program. Its exciting to be back, said Plano, who has been plying his trade in Indiana this summer. I know there are going to be some new horsemen here, and that should certainly add to the competitiveness of the racing. As far as switching from the seven-eighths track at Hoosier Park to the one mile here, there are a lot of similarities. The one difference would be that even though you can win from the back at Hooiser, there is more of a speed bias and you want to be close if you can. Here are Cal Expo, its a much fairer track in that regard and you have more options. As has been the case in the past, Plano will have a very small stable of his own while normally driving in just about every race on the card. Ill have anywhere from three to six horses in my barn, but I prefer to concentrate on the driving, he explained. Its worked out real well that way. Luke will be looking to get off to a quick start on opening night with several very live performers set to go to the post under his direction. Its a good bet hell be posing for more his share of pictures. By Mark Ratzky                      

Tirade Hanover and Tyber Tyke proved victorious in Saturday (September 13) evening's co-featured $15,000 Open events at Tioga Downs, headlining an eleven-race closing night card.   Tirade Hanover ($16.60) sustained a sweeping three-wide bid on the far turn for a 1:54.3 victory in the $15,000 Open Trot, staving off a resurgent Oh No Three O. The four-year-old Crazed gelding was well off dueling leaders In Your Room (Mike Simons) and Oh No Three O (Fern Paquet, Jr.) through a :55.3 initial half mile, sweeping three-wide past a stalled Spice It Up Lindy (Tom Jackson) en route to the far turn. Tirade Hanover continued on to the lead 100 yards from the winning post, maintaining his momentum to just hold off Oh No Three O, who split rivals in a late rally from the pocket. B L Class Act (Aaron Byron) gained late down the grandstand side to take third.   Tyler Raymer drove Tirade Hanover to his fifteenth career win. Trainer Leigh Raymer shares ownership with Stephen Moss, Harold Solomon, and Helane Solomon.   Hoosier invader Tyber Tyke ($4.90) kicked clear late in the $15,000 Open Handicap Pace after sustaining a barrage of pressure, emerging from a four-way battle to control a :55.1 initial half mile. The five-year-old Panspacificflight gelding then repelled a stout first-over challenge from Golden Gun (John Cummings, Jr.) before drawing clear to a 6-1/4 length victory in 1:50.3.   Bettorsluckystreak (Jim Taggart, Jr.) took second narrowly after shaking free in the final yards, while Dreamlands Art (Mike Simons) finished a tiring third after stalking from the pocket.   Fern Paquet, Jr. handled the driving duties aboard Tyber Tyke for trainer Daniel Gill. John McGill and Brian Carsey co-own the 19-time winner.   Tioga Downs honored driving champion Jim Marohn, Jr. and training champion Mike Deters during the evening's festivities, along with acknowledgements of Trotter of the Year I Love New York (trained and driven by Bruce Clarke through the meet) and Pacer of the Year Fireyourguns (driven by Aaron Byron for trainer Terence McClory).   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

TODAY Harnesslink kicks off a new column...FLASHBACK FRIDAY...which will appear on a regular basis and will be written by multiple award-winning journalist and our Australian Editor-in-Chief, PAUL COURTS. If you have any past champions or magical moments you’d like to relive, contact Paul who will be glad to hear from you…enjoy!   Hot on the heels of the retirement of one of the greatest harness racing stayers of the modern era – Smoken Up – another champion known for his seemingly endless supply of stamina will be honoured at Tabcorp Park Melton tomorrow night. Victoria’s premier racing circuit will host The Gammalite, naturally named after the tough campaigner of the 1980s. To be staged over a gruelling 2760 metres, a distance Gammalite would thrived on, the standing start feature has attracted a solid field, headed by up-and-comer Exciteusinthecity. Regarded as the ‘party pooper’ after his free-for-all win last week, therefore relegating Smoken Up to fourth in his farewell appearance, Exciteusinthecity will be the punters’ favourite this time around. Ironically, Exciteusinthecity is prepared at the Terang property Gammalite made famous after being purchased by trainer Darren Cole following Leo O’Connor’s passing. O’Connor bred and trained Gammalite, which died in 2006, throughout his illustrious career In all respect to Exciteusinthecity, at this stage of his career, he can barely occupy Gammalite’s shadow, let alone the position the former champion holds at the stable. By Thor Hanover from High Valley, Gammalite was a dual Inter Dominion winner, securing the prestigious event in 1983 and 1984 to become the third multiple winner of the Championship and the second to win the title in consecutive years. Captain Sandy was the initial dual winner of the time-honoured series, scoring in 1950 and 1953. Affectionately known as the Bathurst Bulldog, Hondo Grattan was the first pacer to successfully defend his Inter Dominion title, winning in 1973 and 1974. Fittingly, Gammalite’s farewell performance was in the 1985 Inter Dominion at his favourite track, Moonee Valley, when fourth behind boom pacer, Preux Chevalier. Victorious at the Valley on 24 occasions, Gammalite won in each Australian state except Tasmania, scoring at 23 of the nation’s tracks. He also had a tremendous affiliation with Adelaide’s Globe Derby. The first pacer to pass the $1million mark in the Southern Hemisphere, Gammalite joined champion thoroughbreds, Kingston Town and Manikato, as the only Australian equines to break the barrier ‘Down Under.’ Gammalite also claimed the mantle as the richest stallion bred in Australasia, including thoroughbreds. Second on debut at Moonee Valley on October 21, 1978, Gammalite was unplaced at his two following starts before opening his account at Bendigo on December 12. The amazing pacer showed a liking for doing it tough early in his career, backing up three days after his maiden victory to score at Stawell from a 10-metre handicap. Having 18 starts as a two-year-old, the gritty chestnut was triumphant 11 times, with five placings and earnings of $41,003 also to his credit. Gammalite’s freshman purse was second only to star unbeaten West Australian, San Simeon, which pocketed $50,162. Sam Simeon also topped the three-year-old earnings list, with Gammalite his closest rival. Winning 12 of his 20 starts at three, Gammalite started a sensational affiliation with Globe Derby by securing the South Australia Derby. The colt’s victory was overshadowed by a failed betting plunge, which saw a little-known pacer named Popular Alm, backed from 33/1 to 9/4 at his debut for Bob and Vin Knight. Gammalite staved off the fast finishing Popular Alm to score by a head. The archrivals engaged in a further 18 battles, with Popular Alm winning 17 of the encounters. Gammalite’s other success over ‘Poppy’ - regarded as the best pacer produced on this side of the equator - was in the 1983 Inter Dominion at Alexandra Park. As for Gammalite’s liking for Globe Derby, it included an astonishing four South Australian Cups between 1982 and 1985. A winner of nine Grand Circuit races, Gammalite’s victories include the Auckland, A G Hunter, West Australia, Cranbourne, Ballarat, Geelong and Fremantle Cups. The first horse to claim two Australian Horse of the Year titles, Gammalite was also the first to be crowned Grand Circuit Champion three times. Another little known feat was Gammalite’s achievement of becoming the first pacer to earn a bonus on top of his stakes. The stallion achieved the feat by completing a clean sweep of the two, three and four-year-old Bonanza Finals at Geelong, collecting a $50,000 bonus with his deeds. West Australian galloper Asian Beau was the only other horse in Australia to collect a bonus. Boasting a best rate of 1:55.8, Gammalite was driven to glory by seven reinsmen, with Bruce Clarke his regular pilot, partnering the champion to 65 wins. Gammalite enjoyed a handy career at stud, siring several classy campaigners, but none could match their “old man’s” record.

After enjoying a cozy pocket trip, Stitch in Time ($19.20) made a late push to the fore, collaring 6-5 favorite Wisenheimer to take the $14,000 Open Handicap Trot at Tioga Downs on Saturday (August 2) evening.   Brandon Simpson floated forward with the four-year-old Keystone Nordic gelding, settling behind House Money (Aaron Byron) on the first turn. As Wisenheimer brushed to the fore through a :28 first quarter, House Money broke stride, enabling Stitch in Time to inherit the pocket with just over a circuit to go. The two would continue as an uncontested leading pair throughout, but Stitch in Time was able to benefit from his tracking trip in the final eighth. Off the far turn, Simpson angled him wide, and the response was instant. Stitch in Time wore down Wisenheimer, prevailing by three-quarters of a length in 1:54.1. I Love New York (Bruce Clarke) was carried to the grandstand side off a stalking trip, staying on for third.   Amber Buter trains Stitch in Time for owners Lynette Buter, Carol Fuhs, and William Fuhs.   Racing returns to Tioga with a stakes-filled Sunday (August 3) afternoon card. The 13-race pari-mutuel program is slated for a 1:30 p.m. EDT start, with a pair of non-wagering events to commence a half-hour earlier.   by James Witherite

Taking full advantage of a cozy pocket trip, Wisenheimer ($8.10) found ample room up the inside to defeat Dough Dough in Saturday (July 26) evening's $14,000 Open Trot at Tioga Downs.   The five-year-old Revenue gelding achieved the early lead, but driver Jim Marohn, Jr. quickly yielded to the pocket, allowing 6-5 favorite Dough Dough (Mike Simons) to handle the pacesetting duties. While I Love New York (Bruce Clarke) advanced two-wide to force a strong :57.0 middle half, Dough Dough accelerated to maintain her advantage.   After reaching the three-quarter split in 1:24.4, Dough Dough was able to dismiss the challenge of I Love New York, but was softened up by the steady pressure. In the final hundred yards, Wisenheimer found room at the pegs to strike the front, prevailing by just over a neck in 1:53.4. Dough Dough held second, while House Money (Aaron Byron) sustained a three-wide bid off the far turn to take third.   Jenny Melander leases and trains Wisenheimer, who is now a 13-time winner.   The drive aboard Wisenheimer was one of three winners on the evening for Marohn, who again took top driving honors on the card.   Live racing returns to Tioga with an 11-race Sunday program. First post is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. EDT.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

While Aaron Byron scored a Saturday (July 12) night grand slam at Tioga Downs, he could only muster second honors in the evening's featured $14,000 Miracle Mile 1 Trot, as I Love New York ($18.40) dug in through the stretch to narrowly prevail.   The six-year-old Broadway Hall entire brushed to the lead after Obrigado (Aaron Byron) pushed clear in a :28.4 first quarter, rating a :57.4 middle half before facing pressure on the far turn. With 300 yards to go, I Love New York dug in to turn aside the first-over Stitch in Time (Jim Marohn, Jr.), and dug in late to stave off an inside rally from Obrigado, prevailing narrowly in 1:55.2. Trainer-driver Bruce Clarke co-owns I Love New York with John Coffey and Patricia Waldeck.   While I Love New York took top trotting honors on the night, Aaron Byron took top driving honors, teaming up with Muscles to Spare (1:57.3), B L Class Act (1:55.3), Joann's Princess (1:57.0), and Clearwater Hanover (1:55.1) for his quartet of wins on the card.   Live racing returns to Tioga Downs with an 11-race Sunday (July 13) afternoon card. First post is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. EDT.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

After being pushed to a :26.4 first quarter, Neighsay Hanover ($6.40) dug in to hold off a barrage of late threats, prevailing by three-quarters of a length in Saturday (June 14) evening's $11,000 Miracle Mile 2 trot at Tioga Downs.   The eight-year-old son of Muscles Yankee dueled with Wisenheimer (Mike Merton) on the first turn, sprinting clear through a torrid early tempo before rating a :56.2 half mile. On the backstretch, Neighsay Hanover had to deal with Wisenheimer again, facing pressure again to a 1:25.1 three-quarter split.   With Wisenheimer starting to fade, Cathy's Princess (Jim Meittinis) gearing up three-wide and I Love New York (Bruce Clarke) readying for a stand-side rally, Ray Schnittker implored Neighsay Hanover for all he had in the stretch, getting a bit of separation off the turn. He turned in a 1:55.2 victory, holding off a late inside rally from Oh No Three O (Jeffrey Long). I Love New York, carried wide off the corner by a breaking Cathy's Princess, rallied for third past the pocket-sitting A Lister.   Schittker, the winning trainer-driver, co-owns Neighsay Hanover with Ted Gewertz, Charles Iannazzo, and Fam Alber Horse Racing.   A pair of first-round divisions of the M&J Oil and Lube late-closing series for distaff pacers were contested earlier in the card, with Godiva Seelster (Fern Paquet, Jr., 1:53.4) and Jets Are On (Corey Braden, 1:54.1) victorious in their respective events.   Live racing resumes tomorrow (Sunday, June 15) at Tioga, with the first of 13 races on a Father's Day program slated for 1:30 p.m. EDT.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs    

After showing an explosive late kick to prevail in last week's sub-featured trot at Tioga Downs, I Love New York ($34.80) prevailed with a more extended bid in Saturday (June 7) evening's featured $14,000 Miracle Mile 1 event, sweeping past a pair of dueling pacesetters en route to a 1:55 victory.   The six-year-old Broadway Hall entire tracked from midfield as 2-1 favorite Lutetium (Greg Merton) rated a :56 half mile. On the backstretch, Cold Certified (Aaron Byron) engaged Lutetium in an extended duel, while trainer-driver Bruce Clarke positioned I Love New York second-over on the approach to the far turn, fanning three-wide after a 1:24.4 three-quarter split. With the leading pair dueling into defeat, I Love New York swept to the fore, driven to hold sway from a deeper-closing In Your Room (Mike Simons) and the five-wide Bouncing Bax (Howard Parker), prevailing by three-quarters of a length.   Clarke co-owns I Love New York with John Coffey and Patricia Waldeck.   Live racing returns to Tioga Downs on Sunday (June 8), with a 13-race afternoon card slated for a 1:30 p.m. (EDT) start.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

Saturday (May 3) saw last year's Tioga Downs driving champion Jim Marohn, Jr. pick up right where he left off, as he swept both $14,000 feature races on Opening Night 2014 in the Southern Tier.   "The Mighty Mite Part Two" wasted no time establishing himself at the top of the driver standings, taking the $14,000 Open Trot with Splitsville ($3.90) in race one. After I Love New York (Bruce Clarke) and Grey Ice (Jim Meittinis) contested the early lead, Marohn brushed the five-year-old Hard Rock N Roll gelding to the fore with a circuit to go, pulling clear in deep stretch to a 2-3/4 length victory over Grey Ice in 1:56.2. Jaipur (Fern Paquet, Jr.), who had won his last two races at Vernon, finished third.   Marohn prevailed in the $14,000 Fillies and Mares Open Pace as well, digging in with pace-setting Southwind Trini ($17.00) to stave off a late bid from the pocket-sitting Whistys Paradise (Mike Merton) en route to a 1:53.3 victory. Asset Management (Fern Paquet, Jr.) rallied from far back to take third, just missing the second spot by a neck.   While Jim Marohn, Jr. scored another driving win with New York Attitude in a first-level conditioned trot, the sweep of the features also constituted a training double for Rob Harmon on the evening.   Live racing resumes at Tioga on Sunday (May 4) afternoon, with the first of thirteen races to begin at 1:30 p.m. EDT.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

Pompano Beach, FL...October 6, 2013...Pompano Park kicked off its 50th anniversary season on Saturday in a festive atmosphere featuring a live bugler, the popular Miami Food Trucks, a new wagering format and fireworks...on the toteboard! In the winner’s over feature, Avantage, the longest proposition on the board at 21-1, upset the applecart in scoring his very first win of the year. The seven year-old altered son of Electric Stena, driven by Tom Sells, took full advantage of a suicidal early pace involving the 1 to 10 stable entry of Deep Finesse and B N Bad--:26.1 to the quarter--to sweep into the lead on the final turn to score by 1 3/4 lengths over Fine Fine Fine (Bruce Clarke). Hillybilly (Bryce Fenn) completed the trifecta with Hyperion Hanover and Neptune Blue Chip earning the final two awards. In a post race interview, Sells said, “...this horse kept knocking on the door for so long and that hot pace really helped him. When I tilted him out around that second turn, he really came alive. He rarely misses a check and, finally tonight, he got the lion’s share. He’s just a good, solid, hard trying racehorse!” Trained by Michele Plouffe for owner Elizabeth Zimmerman, Avantage paid $45.20, $13.00 and $27.20 across the board, keying a trifecta payoff of $4,263.00. Fine Fine Fine paid $15.20 and $42.80 while Hillybilly returned $15.60 top show--the lopsided show payoffs resulting from the entry, garnering the vast majority of the show money, being off the board. In Florida Sunshine Stake action, the three year-old Tashia, again handled by Stephane Lareau, extended her winning streak to seven with a splendid 1:55.1 win for owner Jay Sears, who was celebrating his 72nd birthday. Trained by Kim Sears, the versatile free-legged filly motored up from fifth around turn two, engaged the leading Seven Arias (Sells) around the final turn and put her away turning for home, winning by 1 1/2 lengths. Dandee Diamond (Wally Ross, Jr.) finished third. I Spy A Gator and Full Of Moxie earned the final checks in the field of nine. In the Sunshine State Stake for sophomore trotters, Tim T, driven by Tom Sells, easily handled his foes with a gate to wire score and knocked more than two seconds off of his previous lifetime best. His margin was almost five lengths at the end of the 1:56.4 mile. Favored Railee Kwik (Ranger) was second while Proud Expression (Mel Turcotte) finished third. Stablemates Sky Crest and Without Hesitation earned the minors. Tim T is a gelded son of Basil trained by Mike Deters for the consortium of Morosini, Fritz and Prendergast. Earlier in the day, a non-wagering matinee featuring Florida breds in Sunshine State Stakes action was held with noteworthy performances by Sandalonia, J D Eleven Bell’s, Tough Issue, Tyree’s Treasure and Quincy, among others. Sandalonia, driven by Mickey McNichol, took top honors in a division of the juvenile pace for fillies, using a gutsy :29 final panel to hold off La Regina and Gold Star Jessica in 2:00.2. The Six Of Diamonds lass is trained by Sandy Hollon for owner Heddy Nelson. J D Eleven Bell’s, a daughter of Eleven A M, made a bold quarter move to the top and led the rest of the way for Bruce Ranger, stopping the clock in 1:59. In the division for two year-old colts and geldings, Tough Issue Tom Sells), a gelded son of Tough Sir, led every step of his mile, using a :28.1 final panel to establish a new lifetime mark of 1:59.1. Trained by Mike Deters, Tough Issue is owned by Brenda Komers along with the Verderame Stable. The spirited Tyree’s Treasure annihilated her competition with a victory measuring 13 1/2 lengths in a new lifetime best of 2:00.3. Bruce Ranger handled the filly’s lines for trainer Mark Friedman and owners Holliy Proesel and the Polo Stable. Finally, Quincy, who usually likes to race off the pace, used the opposite tactics to win in 1:55.2 for Bryce Fenn. The three year-old son of Six Of Diamonds clocked all the fractions--:28.1, :57 and 1:26.4 before using a :28.3 finale to seal the deal for the Marc Aubin Stable. by John Berry for Isle Pompano Park  

Pompano Beach, FL...September 26, 2013...Pompano Park is set to kick off their 50th anniversary pari-mutuel season on Saturday, October 5. John Yinger, Director of Racing, said that this season will feature new wagering options for the fans, as well as several new faces stiffening the competition, a new lighting system and a bump in purses. "We are going to offer a Pick-5 wager to kick things off on the wagering side--this to go along with our popular Pick-3 and Pick-4 bets. Of course, we'll have our usual wide array of other wagers on the menu, too," he said. Some of the new stables expected to heighten the level of competition include those of Jim Hardy, Chris Lems, Dave Stratton, Bruce Clarke, Jimmy Whittemore and Greg Wright. Yinger continued, "With our returning stables of great horsemen like Mike Deters, Wally Hennessey, Jim McDonald, Bruce Ranger, Joe Pavia, Jr. and Rick Plano, just to name a few, the racing will, no doubt, be at it's highest plateau in our 50 year history and we hope the harness community of fans will take notice. "We expect that the addition of Sunday racing, beginning in mid-November, will also get some serious notice from the fans." Pompano will also host a non-wagering program this Saturday, September 28, featuring Florida breds in Sunshine State Stakes competition. The Saturday matinee program has a post time of 11:30 and features many two year-olds beginning their racing careers. Also, the three year-old divisions have drawn some very powerful performers including a renewed rivalry between last season's top two juvenile pacing colt performers, Goldstar Thumper and Hillybilly. Goldstar Thumper, a son of Rock On, was bred and is owned and trained by Tom Audley. "Thumper" was last year's champion in his division, pinning a narrow defeat on arch-rival Hillybilly. He will be making his initial start of the year and will have the driving services of Bob Williams, Jr. Hillybilly, a son of N Aboriginal trained by Marc Aubin for breeder and owner Amanta Standardbreds, is already the author of a 1:52.1 mark this year and will have Bruce Ranger in the bike. The sophomore pacing event for the fillies pits two exceptionally talented fillies against each other--Seven Arias and Tashia. Seven Arias, trained by Mark Friedman for owner by Laura Newbery, was last season's champ, winning the crown of Super Night at Pompano with a splendid 1:55 mile for then trainer-driver Deshawn Minor. She has had but three starts this semester and has a 0-1-2 scorecard but comes into the action off of a sharp 1:58-:58 qualifying win over a track labeled as "good" after drenching rains. Tashia, owned by Jay Sears along with trainer Kim Sears, is on a roll, having secured five straight wins coming into this action. After a winless 2012 season, Tashia has won eight times this year with her last win in a lifetime best 1:55. Stall allocations for the 2013-2014 season have also been announced and are available at the following web site:  Click on the "racing" tab, then go to "horsemen" and stall allocations are posted at the top. by John Berry for Pompano Park  

Cold Certified won for the 2nd time in two starts in 2013, both on the 5/8th mile oval in Nichols, Ny. Both times Corey Braden put the 4 year old son of Kadabra-I Like Stephanie on the front and both times he never looked back. Tonight, over a tracked listed sloppy after hours of steady rain, Cold Certified wrangled the front in a quick 27.4. After backing down to the half in 57.4, Braden used another burst of speed to lengthen his lead to five thru ¾ in 1:26.1 and cruised home to a length and three quarter victory over a hard charging Windsong Hercules, who shook loose late to close for 2nd, Fool's Revenue was 3rd. Corey Braden posted a driving triple while Bruce Clarke and Victor Kirby each secured driving doubles; Tyler Raymer had a training double. Also taking place during the races was the Annual Miss Tioga contest. A record 19 contestants entered to battle it out for the crown. When the dust settled, Mary Katherine Julp from nearby Vestal, Ny was the winner. She currently attends UMBC studying Biology and Pre-dental. Tioga Downs continues live racing action on Sunday, July 28th with New York Sire Stakes for 3 year old colt pacers, post time will be 1:30pm, for more information on Tioga Downs please visit us online at Jason Bluhm  

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