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At this point many two-year-olds have a couple of starts in them, so it’s time to marry personal observations with wild speculation and project which ones will be stepping up to win the Cup, Jug and Hambletonion next year. This is by no means a definitive list of the best of the best; as a matter of fact I’m going out of my way to include some by off-brand stallions. That being said, here are a few early standouts. Artspeak is a Western ideal colt out of the Artsplace mare, The Art Museum. The Western Ideals have fallen on hard times at the sales of late, relatively speaking, but Brittany threw $100,000 at this guy, which matched the top price for any of his paternal brothers in North America. He has won both of his NJSS starts for Scott Zeron and trainer Tony Alagna, in dominant fashion. On Pace Day he came first over to win in 1:52.3 at odds of 3/5 at the Meadowlands. Western Ideal has given us the outstanding performers and game changing sires Rocknroll Hanover and American Ideal, as well as Always A Virgin and Big Jim. His 2013 crop moves on to the slugfest that is the PASS next year. Stacia Hanover, the winner of the $100,000 NJSS final for freshman pacing fillies, is also by Western Ideal. The $35,000 Harness Breeders purchase is trained by veteran Steve Elliott and, like Artspeak, driven by Scott Zeron. She has two other wins in the restricted class, aside from the high-dollar final which she won in 1:53.4 at odds of 3/5. Yankee Bounty is a two-year-old gelding by the enigmatic Artiscape stallion, Yankee Cruiser. His dam is the Allamerican Native mare Yankee Bootleg. This isn’t a combination that screams early speed. Yes, Yankee Cruiser did give is the current king of the pacing ranks, Sweet Lou, who held world records at two and three, as well as the rejuvenated speed demon Dancin Yankee, but for the most part this stallion was up against it in Pennsylvania. Yankee Bounty, a $21,000 Harness Breeders purchase, has won both of his starts in impressive fashion. He won splits of the Pennsylvania All Stars and the Albatross for Corey Callahan and trainer Kevin Lane. Yankee Cruiser stands his first year in Ohio in 2014. Bob Ben And John is one of the wave of impressive colts from the first crop of 2009 two-year-old division champ Sportswriter. Casie Coleman, who trained the son of Artsplace, and has been the leading cheerleader for his initial offering, plucked him from the Lexington sale for a modest $17,000. His dam is the Cambest mare, My Best Girl. This colt made his first pari-mutuel start last week in a $70,000 OSS-Gold leg at Mohawk. He was an easy winner by three in 1:53 at odds of 2/1 for Chris Christoforou. Sportswriter is absolutely killing it in the freshman pacing division of the Ontario Sire Stakes; he’s taking all the air; none of the others are on the same planet. SBSW shook the Pennsylvania program to its foundation with his first crop, but what’s happening with Sportswriter in his restricted program may be more dramatic. Shadow Play impressed us last year with his first crop, but he hasn’t gone on to be a factor in the open realm with his sophomores. We’ll wait and see if Sporty, a key player from the stressed Adios line, makes his presence felt outside of Ontario. Sassa Hanover is a filly from the first crop of Rock N Roll Heaven. Ron Burke bought her at Lexington for $50,000. Sassa’s dam, Sayo Hanover, is half to the very fast Shadyshark Hanover. Jim Morrill drover her to an easy two length win in a NYSS race at Monticello on the July 4. She won in 1:56.3 with plenty to spare. And two of her paternal sisters—She’s Heavenly and Band Of Angels—also won top dollar splits of the sire stakes that day. Heaven was held in high esteem at the sales, and thus far he is fulfilling his promise.   Dragon Eddy is a two-year-old gelding—aren’t they all—by Dragon Again, a stallion known more for throwing rugged long lasting types like Foiled Again, Atochia and Aracache Hanover than he is as a sire of early speed. My Little Dragon won her division at two, but she was an exception. Well, Eddy is something of an outlier himself. He brought $42,000 at Lexington, which is on the pricey side for Dragon Again, who now stands in Ohio. John Buttenschoen trains and Mike Simons drives. At the end of June Eddy won a split of the Pennsylvania All Starts in 1:54.3 at Pocono, and he went on to win a division of the Albatross in an eye opening 1:52.4 at odds of 2/5 at the Meadows on July 8. Mission Brief is a brown Muscle Hill filly who opened a lot of eyes when she took her $100,000 final of the NJSS by 13 lengths in 1:53.3 for Yanick Gingras and Ron Burke. This was an improvement on her previous start, where she only won by ten. Her dam Southwind Serena is by the great trotter Varenne. Mission Brief was a $150,000 Lexington purchase. Look out! The Bank is a Donato Hanover colt out of 2008 three-year-old division winner, Lantern Kronos. He won a split of the Pennsylvania All Stars for Jimmy Takter on July 4th and broke stride while leading on the last turn as the 1/9 favorite in a division of the Hickory Pride at The Meadows this week. Again, Takter drove. Uncle Lasse, a full brother to Shake It Cerry and Solvato, is another very promising Donato colt in the Takter Barn. He also won on July 4. Yesterday he was beaten in a quick 1:56.3 split of the Hickory Pride by the Cantab Hall colt Billy Flynn, driven to perfection by Brett Miller. Possess The Will and Your So Vain notwithstanding, Donato has pretty much been all filly no colt to this point. If this pair is turned over to Gingras or Pierce they could change that in a hurry. Honor And Serve, a Donato colt out of 2008 freshman division winner and world record holder Honorable Daughter, is another who might turn the tide. He just took a split of the Hickory Pride for Dave Palone and Jim Campbell. Royal Deceptor is one of numerous offspring of the New York stallion RC Royalty that sold at the Morrisville sale. The success of last year’s Hambletonion winner, Royalty For Life, inspired many to look favorably upon the eleven-year-old siring son of Credit Winner. Cheryl and Michael McGivern took this brown colt home for $11,000. Royal Deceptor won all three of his qualifiers, then went out and won a split of the NYSS in a track record 1:59.3 at Buffalo Raceway for Michael McGivern. Gatka is a big, rugged filly from the first crop of seven-year-old Hambletonion winner Muscle Massive, whose big brother Muscle Mass met with success in Ontario and has since been relocated to New York. Gatka is a sister to Ake Svanstedt’s Muscle Hill filly Heaven’s Door, who won the $100,000 NJSS sophomore final and finished second behind Shake It Cerry in the Del Miller. She won a division of the PA All Stars at The Meadows in 1:56 at 2/5 and last week she took a split of the Meadow Gladys with ease in 1:57.1 at 1/5.  Billy Flynn, a $120,000 Lexington purchase by Steffan Lind, is by Cantab Hall, arguably the best trotting stallion in North America. Another brown colt—there seems to be a run on them—he is out of the Enjoy Lavec mare Zeta Jones and was bred by Brittany farms. Billy took a split of the PA All Stars by six lengths in 1:57.2 at Pocono earlier this month and he beat the highly regarded Centurion ATM and Uncle Lasse in a division of the Hickory Pride. Brett Miller drives. Wild Honey is proving to be a $35,000 bargain for Jimmy Takter. The daughter of Cantab Hall was a close second to Gatka Hanover in that one’s first start and, like Gatka, won a split of the Meadow Gladys at The Meadows, for Yanick Gingras. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

Foiled Again has drawn post 7 in Saturday's (July 19) $150,000 Battle of Lake Erie and has been named the 3-1 slight morning-line favorite by Northfield Park Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting, Dave Bianconi. Foiled Again will appear in the Battle an unprecedented six times, and Saturday will reveal if he is successful in becoming the first horse in Northfield Park history to win this event three times. The 10 year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice. Age does not seem to be slowing Foiled Again. He has paced his last four races in under 1:50. Foiled Again is trained by Ronald Burke and has garnered 80 career victories and sports earnings of $6,313,068. Those career earnings rank him as the richest pacer in the history of harness racing. The 2014 Battle of Lake Erie field: Horse Driver Trainer M/L 1-Night Pro Peter Wrenn Dale Decker 4-1 2-Beach Memories Josh Sutton Brian Brown 15-1 3-Bolt The Duer Mark MacDonald Peter Foley 7-2 4-Clear Vision Brett Miller Ron Burke 9-2 5-Fool Me Once Aaron Merriman Mark Austin 6-1 6-Twilight Bonfire Tony Hall Rich Gillock 12-1 7-Foiled Again Yannick Gingras Ron Burke 3-1 8-Apprentice Hanover Jody Jamieson Benjamin Wallace 10-1 Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip and Maltese Artist. Powerful Undercard This year's Battle of Lake Erie program carries total purses of $554,500. The 15-race program boasts an impressive undercard featuring nine $40,000 divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes for two and three year-old colt pacers and trotters. Superfecta wagering has been added to Saturday's twelfth race, the Battle feature. First race post time is 6:00 p.m. In addition to superior racing action, Battle night will also offer guests a sumptuous buffet in Lady Luck's clubhouse dining room. The special priced buffet is just $15.95. Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 330-467-4101. Guests who want to be down close to all of the racing action can stop by the grandstand apron to sample several of northeast Ohio's most popular food trucks. Live music by Unknown Reason will be part of the apron scene from 5-10 p.m. by Ayers Ratliff, for Northfield Park

Foiled Again is expected to enter Saturday's (July 19) Battle of Lake Erie and will try to become the first horse in Northfield Park history to win the event three times. The 10 year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice. Age does not seem to be slowing Foiled Again. He has paced all of his last three starts under 1:50. Foiled Again is trained by Ronald Burke and has so far garnered 80 career victories and earned $6,313,068. Those earnings make Foiled Again the richest pacer in the history of harness racing. Other millionaire Battle of Lake Erie nominees include: Horse Owner(s) Trainer Bolt The Duer All Star Racing Inc. Peter Foley Clear Vision Burke Racing, Bruscemi, Panhellenic, Koran Ron Burke Heston Blue Chip Kenneth Jacobs Linda Toscano Michael's Power Jeffrey Snyder Casie Coleman Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip and Maltese Artist. An impressive undercard featuring $40,000 divisions of the Ohio Sires Stakes for two and three year-old colt trotters and pacers will support this year's Battle of Lake Erie. In addition, Battle night will also offer guests a sumptuous buffet in Lady Luck's clubhouse dining room. The special Battle of Lake Erie Buffet is just $15.95. Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 330/467-4101. Guests who want to be down close to all of the racing action can stop by the grandstand apron to sample some of northeast Ohio's most popular food trucks. Live music by Unknown Reason can also be enjoyed on the apron from 5 to 10 pm. First race post time is 6:00 p.m. by Ayers Ratliff, for Northfield Park

It’s beginning to look like Ake Svanstedt’s trotter Sebastian is so superior to the competition that he’s racing only against the clock. There was a time when time was privileged over purse money in the pursuit of assessing a stallion or mare’s suitability for the breeding ranks, but those days are long gone. Bob Marks never had much use for them, although he says he did “use them occasionally to get marks on horses that could never accomplish much in actual races.” Flip through the latest edition of the Breeder’s Book and you’ll find a couple of pacers with time trial marks—Jereme’s Jet and 26-year-old Cambest—and the Indiana stallion Jailhouse Jesse on the diagonal side. How sweet it would be to see Sebastian take to the track during the Red Mile meet with a pair of t-breds or pacers behind him and a jacked-up crowd cheering him home. He’d surely rid us of the 1:50 burden as well as Enough Said and his Colonial Downs asterisk. Fifty years ago just about every premium stallion and mare was measured against the clock at some point. Rodney, Fancy Crown, Most Happy Fella, Scotland, Yankee Lass, Bullet Hanover, Bye Bye Byrd, Dancer Hanover, Cheer Honey, Dayan, Hickory Pride, Elma, Isle Of Wight, Steady Beau and Sampson Direct all carry time trial marks. Some drivers specialized in handling the time trialing horses, while others were good with the prompters. When Adios Butler knocked two ticks off Billy Direct’s 22-year-old mark, which was set the day before Greyhound’s at The Red Mile on October 4, 1960, owner Paige West drove the 4-year-old while Del Miller and trainer/driver Eddie Cobb drove the t-bred prompters. When the 4-year-old Cash Hall went after Pine Chip’s 1:54 world record at Delaware in 2006, John Campbell drove the son of Self Possessed while Dave Palone chased after him with the Real Artist mare, Valentine. Cash Hall annihilated the mark with a 1:51.1 mile. On the trotting side, Greyhound’s TT1:55 ¼ mark, set on September 29, 1938 for Sep Palin, held fast for 31 years, until Nevele Pride dropped it to TT1:54.4 for Stanley Dancer at Indianapolis on Sunday August 31, 1969. Twelve thousand enthusiastic fans were in attendance that day. Coincidentally enough, a longstanding pacing mark of 1:55 was also set at that same Lexington meet in 1938: Billy Direct time trialed free-legged in 1:55 for Vic Fleming on September 28, 1938. That mark remained untouched during the 1940s. Frank Ervin put a 1:57.1 mark on 5-year-old Adios in a time trial when he was offered $500 to break the track record, and four years later another great progenitor, Gene Abbe, time trialed in 2:00.3, also at age five. But it took a race mark of 1:55 from Adios Harry in the American Pacing Derby at Vernon Downs on July 16, 1955, with the owner’s son Luther Lyons in the bike, to match Billy Direct’s mark. Adios Butler undercut the 1:55 standard five years later in the time trial referenced above. That 1:55 barrier was finally shattered. The great Speedy Crown didn’t break any records when he time trialed in 2:01.2 as a freshman in 1970, but after winning just four of eight starts and earning a paltry $2,000, he did prove that good things were on the way. Actually the first significant time trial for trotters in the 1970s came from Arnie Almahurst, a crazy fast son of Speedy Scot, who pretty much won every start he didn’t break stride in. He had little in common with his paternal brother, Speedy Crown, who never broke stride—not ever. Arnie time trialed in 1:57.2 at The Red Mile for Joe O’Brien and became the sixth fastest trotter behind Super Bowl, Nevele Pride, Ayres, Speedy Scot and Speedy Crown. Nine years later his 3-year-old son Arndon trotted the fastest mile ever by a trotter when he hit the wire in TT1:54 for Del Miller at The Red Mile. And twelve years after that Arndon’s 4-year-old son Pine Chip became the world record holder when he time trialed in 1:51 for John Campbell at Lexington. Arndon and his dad both retired as the fastest ever. Another important trotting time trial in the ‘70s was ABC Freight’s TT1:57.1 as a 2-year-old for Joe O’Brien at Hollywood Park in 1976. The sire of Garland Lobell topped Nevele Pride’s 1:58.2 freshman mark and became the fastest 2-year-old trotter ever. ABC set his lifetime mark of 1:56.3 the following year in a time trial. The market for blockbuster trotting time trials pretty much dried up after that, although Cash Hall did crush the half-mile mark with that 1:51.1 mile for John Campbell at Delaware in 2006 that was referenced above. The time trials involving Standardbred trotters under saddle has been less prevalent, nonetheless, it has played a prominent role due to the horses and people involved. In 1940 Greyhound ended his racing career under saddle at Lexington. Frances Dodge rode him to a world record of 2:01 ¾. That mark stood for 54-years, until Preferential and Brooke Nickells broke it in 1994 with a 1:58.2 mile. And six years later the mighty Moni Maker, like Greyhound, ended her career under saddle at The Red Mile. Jockey Julie Krone, with Jimmy Takter and Wally Hennessey following with prompters, trotted in an incredible 1:54.1. In the pacing camp it was up to Bret Hanover to continue the assault on the longstanding 1:55 standard that his paternal brother, Adios Butler, had begun. In early September of 1966, 4-year-old Bret, who was within a few months of being retired, time trialed in 1:54 at Vernon Downs for Frank Ervin with a single prompter chasing him. Five weeks later in Lexington Ervin put the TT1:53.3 mark on the big guy that would serve as his lifetime mark. Dancer preferred to put race marks on Albatross so there are no flashy time trials on Super Bird’s resume. He did become the fastest ever in a race when he won both heats of the Tattersalls Pace at The Red Mile in 1:54.4, topping Adios Harry’s race mark, which Bret had matched. He also won in 1:55.3 at Delaware, matching Adios Butler’s time trial mark and eclipsing Bret’s 1:57 half-mile track race mark. Steady Star, a free-legged son of Steady Beau,  who was a year older than Albatross, cornered the time trial market in that era. At three he circled The Red Mile in 1:54 for Joe O’Brien and the following year, on October 1, 1971, he time trialed in a head turning 1:52. Later on, in 1976, 4-year-old Nero time trialed in 1:55.1 and the following year Warm Breeze was race timed in 1:53.1 at Golden Bear in Sacramento. Two years later Meadow Skipper’s son Falcon Almahurst became the fastest 3-year-old pacer ever with a 1:52.2 time trial at Lexington for Bill Haughton. Only Steady Star had gone faster. Then came the game changer: 3-year-old Niatross’s TT1:49.1 at The Red Mile on Oct 1, 1980. It was the sport’s first sub-1:50 mile and, while it parallels Adios Butler’s breach of the 1:50 point, it was so much more. The closest thing to it was Steady Star going 1:52, but the sleek son of Steady Beau didn’t win a single open stakes race during his career—not so for Niatross. His son Nihilator was later positioned to outdo dad in a time trial at Springfield but the weather didn’t cooperate and he was unable to lower his 1:49.3 race mark in a time trial at DuQuoin.  Matt’s Scooter went after the 1:49.1 mark at The Red Mile in 1988 and knocked four ticks off of it. His 1:48.2 time trial for Mike Lachance established a new world record. Matt’s Scooter beat Niatross’s mark but 5-year-old Cambest blew it out of the water with his 1:46.1 time trial at Springfield. The problem was that he wasn’t tested afterwards and not long after that his 1:52.1 win in the Senior Jug was disqualified due to elevated bicarbonate levels. Cambest was slated to stand at Hanover Shoe Farms but in light of the controversial final chapter of his career they passed. So stick Jimmy Takter and Bernie Noren behind a couple of fast pacers and let’s see if Ake can wheel Sebastian around The Red Mile in a time that will cause the crowd to gasp the way they did for Steady Star’s 1:52 mile and Niatross’s 1:49.1. Speed has always sold in this game; time to pump it up via the time trial. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 21, 2014-Longshot Digital Z Tam (Brent Holland) vaulted from second-over Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $44,000 Open Handicap Pace. Sitting chilly from post position No. 5, "Digital" saw Sapphire City (Pat Lachance) uncork early intervals of :27.4 and :56.3. Meanwhile, 3-5 choice Heston Blue Chip (Dan Dube), who did not leave, was forced to try it first-up. He moved from third, with Digital Z Tam right behind. Sapphire City and Heston Blue Chip dropped the gloves in and out of a 1:24.1 three-quarters and into the early lane, There, the favorite put away the leader, but could not counter the challenger on his rear. Digital Z Tam prevailed over the people's choice by three-quarters of a length in 1:52. P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett), last turning for home, rallied for third, with Pancetta (Larry Stalbaum) and Steelhead Hanover (Eric Goodell) rounding out the payees. For Digital Z Tam, a 10-year-old Cambest gelding owned by J M F Racing and trained by Gilberto Garcia-Herrera, he returned $40 (seventh choice) for his seventh win in 17 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $147,50, with the triple returning $563. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule is back in vogue, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

Saturday night at The Meadowlands was a perfect evening for racing and featured five divisions of the Caramore pacing series for C level pacers. Each division held a purse of $10,000 with a second leg next week and finals estimated at $25,000 on June 21.   The short series is named for Caramore - Irish for big friend - who raced from 1980 to 1988 for the late Rev Thomas O'Connor earning $1,129,411 with 55 wins, 34 seconds and 21 thirds from 199 starts. The son of Jolly Roger - JM Dorothy captured the 1981 New Jersey Classic and was named New Jersey Standardbred of the Year in 1981.   The first division was won by Tell Us More, a four year old son of former New Jersey sire Tell All, driven to a front running 1:50.3 lifetime best by Jim Marshall III. It was the first win of the season for Tell Us More trained by James Siegelman for Michael Casalino, Jr of Freehold, NJ. Seek The Dragon and Corky Baran filled up the board spots.   K Slater was another New Jersey based winner when he scored a gate to wire personal 1:51.3 record in the second division for trainer Tom Fanning and owner Fly By Night Stable of nearby Secaucus, NJ. The Fly By Night stable has had a presence locally for a number of years and includes nearly a dozen principals with Bob Anderson and Tom Amendola calling the shots for the group.   Jason Bartlett drove the seven year old son of Rocknroll Hanover to the triumph. K Slater has earned well in excess of $300,000 career-wise and was scoring for the 21st time in 136 starts. Andrew Luck parlayed a long uncovered journey into second best and I'm Banksy used his characteristic closing kick to snare the show.   In the third split, Jason Bartlett sent favored Duel In The Sun to the front passing the three eighths mark, got a little breather in the middle then held safe in a career best 1:51.4. This Cambest four year old is approaching the $300,000 mark himself with most of that accumulated in the Kentucky State Bred program. He is now trained by Mark Ford who owns the gelding in partnership with VIP Internet Stable, LLC of Piscataway, NJ. On The Radar was an unlucky second, lacking room to maneuver until too late and Up Up And Out held third after ranging up first-over.   John's Polyview struck another blow for forward placement in race five, setting all the pace while getting kind fractions and winning under wraps in 1:51.2 for Eric Goodell. He's a four year old McArdle that had a big year in the Pennsylvania program at age two, was disappointing last year at three and was winning for the first time in five outings this year. He is trained by New Jersey native Donna Marshall, the 2013 recipient of USHWA's January Davies Humanitarian Award, for California owner Mortberg Trust. Pembroke Dewey was second and Relentless Dreamer third.   by Nck Salvi, for the Meadowlands          

Charlottetown, PE - The fields are set for another weekend of racing at Red Shores Charlottetown Saturday at 6pm with Red Shores Summerside going post-ward at 1pm on Sunday. The Bring a Friend promotion, which has Standardbred Canada teaming up with tracks across the country, will also take place with fans being treated to behind the scenes tours, prize giveaways and winner's circle presentations. The Saturday program includes an impressive line-up from one of Atlantic Canada's newest stables. Foxyhall Racing, owned by Ron Hall of Summerside PE, has joined forces with trainer-driver Jason Hughes of Charlottetown. The partnership has been successful so far. Narragansett, a five-year-old brown gelding by Rocknroll Hanover, will attempt for his third win in a row in race 9. It won't be easy with red hot Camcun off the rail who is sporting a three race win streak for Kenny Arsenault. There are two new horses out of the Foxyhall stable that have been noticed by the rail-birds. Say It Again Sam has won both starts since arriving from Mohawk including a 1:58.2 posting and final quarter charted in a dazzling 27.4 seconds. He is favored to win his assignment in race 4. Astor moves to the Island from Yonkers Raceway in New York. The son of Camluck won his qualifier by a whopping 21 lengths in 1:57.2 and starts from post 8 in race 7 for Hughes. In other action, All Turain will try to extend his winning streak to nine when the pacer goes to the gate in the evening's featured event in race 11. Brodie MacPhee will be back in the bike for trainer-owner Trevor Hicken and his co-owner Lee Hicken. The line-up has Cambest Kisser (pp1), Touch of Lightning (pp2), Perfect Escape (pp3), Judge Jon (pp4), R Sonoflife (pp5), All Turain (pp6). A familiar name returns to the racetrack for the 2014 campaign. Zip the Lip, owned by Orville Willis and Don Sweet of O'Leary, gets the rail for his regular pilot Brian MacPhee in the open trot. For the complete list of entries, top picks and live video go to www.redshores.ca Hail the Taxi Debuts in Summerside feature Summerside, PE - Hail the Taxi makes his Prince Edward Island debut Sunday in the top class at Red Shores Summerside. Post time for the 12 dash card is 1pm. The Bring a Friend to the track promotion, presented by Standardbred Canada, will also highlight the card with race hostess Marie MacRae taking guests on behind the scenes tours, winner's circle presentations and prize draws. The action will be carried at www.redshores.ca Hail the Taxi joins the Darren Trainor stable after competing on the Ontario circuit at Mohawk, Flamboro, Woodbine and London. The four-year-old qualified over Mohawk in 1:55.2. Gilles Barrieau is listed to drive from post 4. Here is the field. Outside the Wire (pp1), Lucky Encounter (pp2), High Bar (pp3), Hail the Taxi (pp4), McMaverick (pp5), Ultimate Luck (pp6), SA Summers Luck (pp7). The afternoon back-class has Acton O So Royal listed as the 5-2 morning line favorite for owner-trainer Wayne Pike. The pacer has a win and a third from three starts this season. Regular pilot Mark Bradley is on stakes assignment in Truro so Norris Rogers will pick up the catch-drive. Veterans Blu Meadow Willie and Life Savior are also triactor possibilities. The always popular barn 4 will send out some contenders on the program. Joachim, owned by Wendell and Robbie Shaw, Summerside and Derek Folland, steps on the track to compete in race 9 for catch-driver Michael McGuigan while owner-trainer and driver Rocky Schurman handles Carrera Angel in race 10. Schurman and Carrera Angel won the Summerside pace during the big O'Brien Awards race card in February. Silverhill Lucky hasn't missed the top three yet this season. The colt gets top billing once again when he competes in race 6 for owner Casey Gavin, Tignish, trainer Thane Mann and driver Terry Gallant. This combination is one of the hottest teams on the grounds right now. For the complete list of entries, results, top picks or live video go to www.redshores.ca by Lee Drake, for Red Shores

Hamburg, NY-- On what turned out to be a cooler night with a slower track than normal, CS Kentucky (Dream Believer-Cam's Britt-Cambest) proved she was the best "new shooter" coming to Buffalo Raceway. The race set up almost perfectly for this mare who was set as the long shot in the morning line. As the race began V'La Faire (Drew Monti) went right to the lead and CS Kentucky followed on to the turn as She's A Maniac got left on the outside. By the time the field reached the back stretch CS Kentucky had a ton of pace and went right to the lead before the quarter. When they came by the stands the first time CS Kentucky had to deal with the challenge of She's A Maniac for just a brief moment and hit the half in 58.3 slowing it down her own way to a 30 second, 2nd panel. It appeared Taylor Rei (Ray Fisher Jr.) would move on by as they reached the three-quarter marker, but CS Kentucky found more as V'La Faire sat in the pocket spot. When they entered the stretch V'La Faire was the one to challenge and just missed to CS Kentucky at the line in what was a stellar race from both mares. CS Kentucky is trained by Alex Giuliani and owned by Paul L & Ronald Louis Viele of Batavia, New York. This was the 4th win in 14 starts for this 6 year old mare. Live racing continues on Friday night with a first post of 6:40 PM. Buffalo Raceway now races four days a week, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. For more information, results, and other news visit buffaloraceway.com. By Michael Carter, For Buffalo Raceway  

Charlottetown, PE - All Turain remains perfect in 2014 after winning the top class in 1:56.1 at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park on Saturday. Brodie MacPhee was in the bike for the victory for owners Lee Hicken of Stratford and trainer Trevor Hicken, Montague. MacPhee rallied the pacer off the starting gate from post 8 to take the lead and cut fractions of 28.3, 58.1 and 1:27 before leveling a final quarter of 29.1 to win by three lengths over Sterling Seelster. Temp Seelster was third. Camcun took the back-up class in 1:58 flat to record his third victory in a row. Kenny Arsenault mapped out the winning trip for his co-owner Dan Belliveau, Halifax, NS. Presto Pegasus won the opening trot class for Brian Andrew in 2:02.1. The nine-year-old gelding is co-owned by Bill Andrew, Calgary, Alberta and Rachel Andrew, Milton Station, PE. The open trot went to Pleasure Girls in 2:00.3 for owner Shelly Gass and driver Walter Cheverie. Jason Hughes enjoyed a hat-trick with scores aboard Say It Again Sam, Isleofpalms and Cambest Kisser. Marc Campbell posted a driving double. For complete results go to www.redshores.ca by Lee Drake, for Red Shores

Charlottetown, PE - All Turain takes center stage in an all-star feature event Saturday at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino. The horses will be called to the gate on the CDP oval at 6pm. All the action will be carried live at w "He's back" boomed track announcer Vance Cameron referring to All Turain when he toured the city track last week in an impressive 1:57 flat in his first start off 2014. Brodie MacPhee did the driving. It wasn't an easy journey as the pacer got roughed up early through a 28 second opener before MacPhee could rate the super-star and get him home by holding off a fast closing Perfect Escape, a new purchase from longtime owners Jack Keenan, Stratford and Joseph Dahl, Burlington, Ontario. These two will meet again but the set is different with Perfect Escape drawing the inside post 3 while All Turain, owned by Lee and Trevor Hicken, will have to draft a plan from outside post 8. Here is the field for the race 12 feature for a purse of $2,400. Sterling Seelster (pp1), Tempo Seelster(pp2), Perfect Escape(pp3), Machinthesand(pp4), Judge Jon(pp5), Touch of Lightning(pp6), R Sonoflife(pp7), All Turain(pp8). The best trotters on the East coast will perform in race 5 with last week's winner Caliban Hanover (Corey MacPherson) and Abundaspin (Harold Shepherd) hooking up in the $1,550 class. They were separated by a nose last week in a photo finish for win at Summerside so watch for another close battle. Two horses on the card will try to extend their two race winning streaks. Camcun leaves from post 4 in a seven horse field in race 7 for Kenny Arsenault while Onehotvett, who claimed Sunday's feature at Summerside, comes in to try to knock off morning line favorites Dianna Santanna and Cambest Kisser in race 9. Stakes Stars Arrive at Summerside Summerside, PE - The stars are out in full force as the three-year-old fillies and colts compete in divisions of the Ruby Chappell and Bob Dewar memorial stakes Sunday at Red Shores Summerside. Post time is 1pm for the 12 dash card. The award winning Saulsbrook Alana makes her 2014 debut in Ruby Chappell memorial in race 11 with a purse of $6,200. Marc Campbell qualified the daughter of Western Paradise over Charlottetown in 1:57.2 for owner Reg MacPherson and trainer Kevin MacLean. Campbell is required to drive his own trainee Kellys Cross in the race so Gilles Barrieau gets the call to handle the filly who earned $61,473 from 13 starts in 2013. That included 9 wins and a lifetime mark of 1:55.1 taken at Summerside. The morning line favorites have been established in the other Chappell stakes and they include Sea Anna Win, owned by Tim Banks, Charlottetown, Dusty Lane Dora from the Elton Millar stable and Elm Grove Inarush trained by Eddy Doucette. The three-year-old colts, dubbed the glamour boys, will appear in four divisions of the Bob Dewar memorial beginning in race 4 when trainer Tom Weatherbie sends out Island Gigolo for owner James Pound of Hunter River. The colt put in a solid campaign last year with three wins from 10 starts. He can expect pressure from rail-sitter Waterside Light and Just a Professor. Watch for top guns Dumas Walker (Myles Heffernan) who goes behind the gate from post 3 in race 6 of the Dewar stake with Tobins Fushion, a winner of $28,235 in his two-year-old campaign, in race 8 and Arties Magic and Super S Yzerman get ready to settle the score in the final split in race 10. It's the most anticipated card of the season and it all takes place Sunday at 1pm at Red Shores Summerside. For complete entries, Jared's top picks and live broadcast go to www.redshores.ca by Lee A. Drake, for Red Shores

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 17, 2014- Reformed harness racing claimer Digital Z Tam (Dan Dube) was well-placed off a wicked Saturday night speed duel. winning Yonkers Raceway $38,000 Open Handicap Pace. Assigned inside his five (after one defection) rivals, Digital Z Tam watched a spirited early floor show. Sapphire City (Eric Carlson), Heston Blue Chip (Larry Stalbaum) and Statesman N (Brent Holland) were all in the game. What resulted was a :26.1 opening quarter-mile and :54.1 intermission. After Heston Blue Chip's second move, Digital Z Tam took out of fourth. That one assaulted the leader in and out of a 1:23 three-quarters, grabbing the advantage early in the lane. Meanwhile, P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett), as the 9-10 choice, was racing at the back of the bus. He saved ground inside, then angled out third-over. However, Digital Z Tam had too many things working on his behalf. He widened to whip 56-1 rank outsider Malak Uswaad N (Jordan Stratton) by a couple of lengths in season's-best 1:51.3. P H Supercam settled for third, beaten 2½ lengths. For Digital Z Tam, a 10-year-old Cambest gelding owned and J M F Racing and trained by Gilberto Garcia-Herrera, he returned $29 (fourth choice) for his sixth win in a dozen seasonal starts. The exacta paid $369, with the triple returning $1,628. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

Charlottetown, PE - Van Zant has drawn the rail in the Saturday night feature event at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park while newcomer Sa Summers Luck is the morning line favorite in the Victoria Day pace for opening day card Monday at Red Shores Summerside to set the stage for a busy weekend of harness racing at Island tracks. First race post time on Saturday is 6pm while the Monday card is slated for a 1pm post time. Ron Matheson will drive Van Zant for his co-owner Tom Clark of Charlottetown and goes into the program with 989 career wins as a driver only 11 away from milestone 1,000. The team, which includes son Jackie as trainer, has been sharp posting two seconds and a victory over his last three starts. The Matheson stable will also send out General Luckypercy from post 6 with Gilles Barrieau in the bike. There will be stiff competition from Tempo Seelster (Vince Poulton) from post 3 while Sterling Seelster, who's riding a two race winning streak, will also make his presence felt for driver Marc Campbell and new owner Marie Cameron of Summerside. The all-star line-up also includes Blue Star Outlaw, Nobestbfor and Machinthesand. In other action, Abundaspin is making headlines in his last year of racing as the trotter hasn't tasted defeat since he returned to the track on April 26. Harold Shepherd will handle the 14 year-old lifetime winner of $471,504 in the open trot class. The other morning line favorites include newcomer Kan Wire, who arrives from London Ontario, and Caliban Hanover will attempt to spoil the party for Abundaspin and owner Mikeala Lustic of Cornwall. The Saturday card will begin with a first race post time at 6pm. For race programs, top picks and live broadcast go to www.redshores.ca Horses are back at Summerside Summerside, PE - The horses are back at Summerside! The new season gets underway Monday afternoon at Red Shores Summerside with an exciting 12 dash program. Post time is 1pm and the card will official launch the countdown to the Governor's Plate. The 11th race Victoria Day pace will headline the program with newcomer Sa Summers Luck being established as the morning line favorite for driver Corey MacPherson and the Bing Easter stable from O'Leary. The pacer was in action at Flamboro Downs in Ontario then made three starts at Truro which included a second place finish in a sparking 1:57.2. The Jason Hughes stable has two starters in the race with Bunny Mach (pp1) and Cambest Kisser (pp7) both capable of hitting the triactor ticket. The field has top guns like Paphos, Bet the House, Carnivore, Windemere Eric and Lucky Encounter. What a great match-up to kick off the 2014 season. Darren and Jennifer Trainor of Vernon River, who walked away with a truckload of trophies at the annual Prince County Horsemen's Club awards night recently, are favored to win the back-up class on the afternoon with Panda Bear in race 10. Marc Campbell gets the driving assignment from the husband and wife team who enjoyed Great Success at Summerside oval in 2013. Race analyst Jared Stretch is back with his top picks for the 2014 season and put Capitalism as his top choice in this class followed by Panda Bear and Onhotvet (4-3-5). For race programs, Jared's top picks and live broadcast go to www.redshores.ca. you can also follow the action on twitter @red_shores. by Lee A. Drake, for Red Shores

Charlottetown, PE - The stage is set for an action packed card of harness racing Saturday at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park with some of the top horses in the region competing in a nine horse feature in race 11. First race post time is 6pm. Mach It Big, from the Jonah Moase stable in Cornwall, didn't have any luck with the draw landing on post position 8 against a powerful line-up. His starting point last week (pp4) gave him a bit of an advantage. The set-up is much different this week. Van Zant (Ron Matheson) is listed as the 3-1 choice from post 2 while Tempo Seelster, who is improving with every start, gets the rail for driver Vince Poulton. Miracle Matts (Corey MacPherson) drew post nine so he'll line-up behind the rail horse to secure position near the front end when the wings fold. Although this scenario could complicate matters, Mach It Big and pilot Marc Campbell still get the support from race analyst Les MacIsaac. "He's saddled with the eight hole but he showed last week why his connections thought enough of him to enter him in the Gold Cup & Saucer series last year," MacIsaac said. "Outside post or not he's clearly the one to beat." The field is loaded with talent which includes Cambest Kisser (Brodie MacPhee), Blue Star Outlaw (Kenny Arsenault), Every Day (Brian Andrew), Narragansett (Jason Hughes) and Nobestbfor (Walter Cheverie). In other action, Prynne Hanover, a new addition to the Mike McGuigan stable from owner James Whelan Jr of Vernon Bridge, will make his Charlottetown debut in race 5 while Alcars Spud Baran, who qualified at Summerside for trainer Wendell Shaw and owner Wendell Grady of Summerside, launches his career on the east coast in race 3 with Walter Cheverie listed to drive. Red Shores is launching a new promotion this weekend called Set for Summer and later this month will introduce the drivers, businesses and charities in the third annual Drive for Charity. The horses return to Red Shores Summerside for opening day Monday May 19th. Post time is 1pm. by Lee Drake, for Red Shores

Charlottetown, PE - Mach It Big, owned and trained by Jonah Moase of Cornwall, is favored to win the Saturday feature at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Post time for the program is 6pm with the 140th running of the famed Kentucky Derby also beaming in from Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Mach It Big has moved home after a stint competing on the Ontario circuit at Western Fair and Flamboro Downs. Marc Campbell gets the driving assignment and takes on last week's winner Miracle Matts (Corey MacPherson) and triactor candidates Cambest Kisser and Bunny Mach both owned by Don and Steven MacRae of Vernon Bridge. Van Zant gets the pylons for driver Ron Matheson and his co-owner Tom Clark of Charlottetown and trainer Jackie Matheson. The feature will go to the gate in race 5. Tempo Seelster, with owner-driver Vince Poulton in the bike, has been established as the 5-2 morning line favorite in the back-up class in race 11. The four-year-old son of Santanna Blue Chip has assembled a solid resume since moving to PEI last season along with an impressive qualifier and a second place 1:58.4 finish against winner Miracle Matts in last week's opener. With Vince committed to Tempo Seelster, brother Gary, who trains and co-owns Cabo Pan Lucas with Alan Walker of Charlottetown, has listed the services of Danny MacDonald from post five. The line-up also features two horses from the Jason Hughes stable. Blue Star Outlaw starts from post three while his new stable contender, Beckenbauer, leaves from the two hole with Kenny Arsenault catch-driving. Every Day (Brian Andrew) and McMaverick (Walter Cheverie) complete the power-packed field. It could be a big night for the Poulton family as they team up with sister Gail MacDonald with IDK in the evening's finale. The pacer launched the 2014 season with a victory and takes on JK Special, owned by Joe Smallwood, and Blue Meadow Willlie owned by Brenda and Robert MacInnis of Summerside. Trotter Abundaspin, who began his final year of racing with a victory at age 14, will try to get his 75th lifetime win for owner Mikaela Lustic of Cornwall. Harold Shepherd will handle the teenager from post 3. By Lee Drake, for Red Shores

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - Miracle Matts went down the highway to win the feature event as racing returned to Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at The Charlottetown Driving Park. Corey MacPherson drove Miracle Matts in the race 9 feature for a purse of $2,000. Owned and trained by Blois MacPhail of Cornwall, Miracle Matts left from post six and made the front with fractions of 28.3, 59.1 and 1:29.4 before fighting off the pocket sitting Tempo Seelster (Vincent Poulton) in the stretch to win in 1:58.4. Tempo Seelster was second with Cambest Kisser (Jason Hughes) finishing third. Abundaspin captured the Open trot handicap in 2:02 for trainer-driver Harold Shepherd and owner Mikaela Lustic of Cornwall. Honeymoonisover (Mark Bradley) was second with third going to Buckling Banbury (Corey MacPherson). The season open went to Solid Performance in 2:03 for owner-trainer-driver Earl Smith of Hunter River. Its Handsome Hank (Brian MacPhee) returned to the races after not competing since September of 2012 to finish second with Eyes Of Glory (Steven Shepherd) finishing third. The back-up pace went in race 10 for $1,600 with Van Zant using off the pace tactics to win in 1:58.2, the fastest mile of the night. Co-owner Ron Matheson was in the driver's seat for trainer Jackie Matheson and co-owner Tom Clark of Charlottetown. A newcomer to Charlottetown, Beckenbauer (Kenny Arsenault) finished second with Paphos (Marc Campbell) third. Campbell had a driving double on the card, winning with Better Wave in 2:02.3 and Silky Britches in 2:01.4. Other winners were My Lucky Killean (Gary Chappell) in 2:01.4, Putnams Snap (Wayne Dunn) in 1:59.3, Bunny Mach (Hughes) in 1:59.4 and I D K (Poulton) in 2:00. Total bet on the 10-dash card was $23,602. By Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - The 2014 meet kicks off Saturday evening at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at The Charlottetown Driving Park with a 6 pm first race post time. Lyons Horace will look to open up the season as he is favored in race 1 for driver Mark Bradley, trainer Bo Ford and owner Evan Ford of Charlottetown. The eight-year-old son of Astreos will be making his first attempt as a free-legged pacer after he ditched the hopples before his impressive 2:02 qualifying victory by a seven-length winning margin last Saturday in Charlottetown. Lyons Horace has post 2 in the six-horse field for a purse of $1,000. The 10-dash card is headlined by the race 9 feature for a purse of $2,000. Tempo Seelster will leave from post 4 as the morning line favorite for trainer-driver-owner Vince Poulton of Charlottetown. The four-year-old Santanna Blue Chip gelding was impressive in qualifying action earlier this week, with a 1:59.4 victory capped off with a 28.2 final quarter. It will not be a cakewalk as the pacer starts his aged career against two of the top horses last winter in Charlottetown, Cambest Kisser (Jason Hughes) and Miracle Matts (Corey MacPherson). Miracle Matts has post 6 in the seven horse field, after racing at Woodbine Racetrack in Rexdale, Ont., after Charlottetown closed for its winter break. Cambest Kisser is shouldered with post 7 in the event that also includes General Simba (Brodie MacPhee), Every Day (Brian Andrew), Blu Meadow Willie (Bob MacInnis) and Blue Star Outlaw (Kenny Arsenault). The $1,550 Open Trot lines up in race 4 with newcomer Pleasure Girls going up against Charlottetown's 2013 trotter-of-the-year, Abundaspin. Wayne Dunn will driver Pleasure Girls for owner Shelley Gass and trainer Ron Gass, who has three entries in the six-horse field. The nine-year-old mare has had a nearly six-year hiatus from racing but looked large is qualifying action with a monstrous 28.3 final quarter to defeat Abundaspin in the final strides. Pleasure Girls has post 5 while Abundaspin (Harold Shepherd) has post 4. Other entries include Honeymoonisover (Mark Bradley), JK Queen (Walter Cheverie), Caliban Hanover (Ron Gass) and Buckling Banbury (Corey MacPherson). The back-up pace will go in the race 10 finale with Paphos (Marc Campbell) favored from post 2 for owner-trainer Don Milligan. Eight horses will compete in that event for a purse of $1,600. by Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

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