Day At The Track
Search Results
65 to 80 of 131

 Antonio "Tony" Chiaravalle, who campaigned such notables as 1993 Pacer of the Year Presidential Ball, his blazing-fast stablemate Riyadh, and the top free-for-allers Dream Maker and Lime Time, died Monday, June 23, at the age of 78. Before Presidential Ball gave Mr. Chiaravalle a top sophomore stakes contender, Dream Maker and Lime Time put him in the winner's circle for the sport's most prestigious races for older horses. Dream Maker defeated Rambling Willie, Le Baron Rouge, Senor Skipper and Governor's Skipper and won the 1978 Provincial Cup at Windsor and the 1978 Canadian Pacing Derby at Greenwood Raceway. He was voted Canada's Aged Pacer of 1977. To view the rest of this story click here.

London, May 27, 2014 -- He defies what you would expect from a world-class professional athlete at the top of his game in just about every category except heart. He lacks size, is an old man in a younger man’s game and isn’t blessed with blinding speed or a chiselled physique. Yet, Foiled Again stands atop the globe as the richest horse in harness racing history and is an epic overachiever by any sport’s standards. Friday night at The Raceway at The Western Fair District in London, fans will get a chance to sit mere metres away from this superstar as Foiled Again competes in his sixth consecutive Molson Pace. One lucky fan will be sitting even closer. The Raceway will draw one name to sit behind the great horse in a special two-seat jog cart when Foiled Again completes an early warm-up trip of the downtown oval. As for the $150,000 race, Quebec native Yannick Gingras will be in the sulky behind Foiled Again, a horse that has earned over $6.2 million in his career. Gingras, who lives and works in New Jersey, is Foiled Again’s regular driver and one of the pacer’s biggest fans. He calls Foiled Again “The People’s Horse”. “He’s that third-line guy, the sixth round draft pick that scores 50 goals six years in a row,” Gingras said. To further the hockey analogy, Foiled Again not only is a grinder, he’s also pushing 40. He’s 10 years old in a sport where most racehorses are retired at half his age and mandatory retirement comes when they reach 15. “He’s an overachiever that wasn’t an expensive yearling, wasn’t a great two- and three-year-old,” Gingras said of horse racing’s most lucrative years. “He’s a horse that’s done it the hard way his whole life. Not only did he have to earn it against the best in the world, the $6 million he’s earned he’s earned it in the open company. He didn’t make $3 million by the time he was three against restricted horses. He’s made the most the last six years racing against the best North America has to offer… He’s a very easy horse to love.” In the 42nd edition of the Molson Pace, Foiled Again will start from the outside post seven in the eight-horse field as he tries to win the race for the third time in his career to go along with victories in 2012 and 2011. Gingras said Foiled Again’s post might not be as big a hindrance as it may first appear. “He never takes his trip with him. He likes it roughed up. He’s a fighter,” Gingras said. Last year’s champ, State Treasurer, drew the rail in a deep field in which the horses have combined earnings exceeding $10.5 million, as well as 215 career victories between them from nearly 650 starts. The Molson Pace will be race 12 on a card that kicks off Friday with a 7:05 p.m. first-race post. Apart from the chance to win a trip around the track behind Foiled Again, commemorative Foiled Again post cards will be given away to fans while supplies last. The Molson team will have games, contests, giveaways and a grand prize draw at its Party on the Patio. The track will have a grand prize draw for a VIP package for eight people to annual London Beer and Barbecue Show June 20-22 at The Western Fair District. The OLG will be giving out slots vouchers to all customers in attendance. Radio station 98.1 FREE FM will also be on site, broadcasting live. On the betting side, there will be a $7,500 guaranteed pool on the Early Pick-4, a $10,000 guaranteed pool on the Late Pick-4 and a $10,000 guaranteed pool on the Super Hi-5. HorsePlayer Interactive (HPI) will be running an online promotion to give away a Pepsi North America Cup VIP package and the Horseplayers Association of North America (HANA) is promoting the Late Pick-4 by asking people to vote for the races they’d like to see make up the sequence. Gingras said he likes his chances to win a third Molson Pace with Foiled Again despite an ultra-talented field that, apart from State Treasurer, also includes: Bettors Edge, Bandolito, Apprentice Hanover, Dancin Yankee, P H Super Cam and Captive Audience. “He’s actually gotten better and better and better every year,” the driver said of Foiled Again’s age-defying performance. Meanwhile, Foiled Again’s fan following has grown substantially. “I love that,” Gingras said. “At the end of 2012, I think he earned a lot of people’s respect. It was definitely when he went over Gallo Blue Chip’s money record in the Canadian Pacing Derby… It started a little bit there, but it snowballed into last year. At the end of last year all the attention was well, well deserved. I’m very proud of him.” by Greg Blanchard, for The Raceway

TORONTO, May 21 - WEG standardbred racing is set to return to Mohawk Racetrack in Campbellville for the 51st season of live racing. The 102-day meet will kick off on Thursday, May 22 and live racing will be held five nights a week on Mondays, Tuesdays (except May 27 and October 7) , Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Each race night will have a 7:25 p.m. first race post time. "It's an exciting time of the year," noted driver Jonathan Drury. "Everyone looks forward to the return of Mohawk because that means it's summer time and a full schedule of great stakes events. Other drivers along with fans and customers are going to have a lot of fun this summer." The most anticipated event on the stakes calendar is the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup, featuring the finest three-year-old pacers, set for Saturday, June 14. The evening will offer a special post time of 6:45 p.m. Stakes action begins immediately at Mohawk, with the SBOA Stakes eliminations for three-year-old filly pacer and trotters featured on the initial Saturday card, and continues almost non-stop until fall. Major stakes engagements include the Maple Leaf Trot (Saturday, July 19), the Metro Pace, Canadian Pacing Derby and Shes A Great Lady Stakes (Saturday, August 30) and the Canadian Trotting Classic, Elegantimage Stakes, Peaceful Way Stakes and William Wellwood Memorial (Saturday, September 13). Ribs will be prominent throughout Pepsi North America Cup weekend as Crabby's BBQ Shack and Silver Bullet BBQ will play host to fans.The popular 'Your First Bet Is On Us' promotion returns. Every customer can register on site for a free $2 bet. Fans can also visit Labatt's Beerville to play great games and win cool prizes. Mohawk Racetrack will also be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the town of Campbellville. Mohawk will host fireworks on Friday, June 13 with a special post time of 7:05 p.m. Mohawk fans can also follow the action each night on Twitter. Hosts Mike Hamilton, along with track announcer Ken Middleton and Greg Gangle will offer 'tweets' during each live program aimed at giving customers more race related information. You can follow them on Twitter at the following: Hamilton_WOMoh, Middleton_WOMoh, GGangle_WOMoh. Fans should also be sure to check out Mohawks Trackside Bar for its nightly specials throughout the meet. The specials are listed below: Monday - 1/2 Price Wings Tuesday - Bud & Burger Thursday - Steak N Stella Friday - Thank Cod It's Friday Patrons are also encouraged to engage with Mohawk Racetrack through its Facebook page found by clicking the following link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mohawk-Racetrack/164889090219676 Also fans can go to www.Twitter.com to sign on to Twitter and then search for the following harness racing stars. Drivers: Aaron Byron - @ByronAaron Chris Christoforou - @CCAstreos Dan Clements - @DanielWClements Jonathan Drury - @JDruryRacing Billy Davis Jr. - @BillyDavisRacin Phil Hudon – @Whodon99 Jonathan Drury - @JDruryRacing Anthony Haughan - @AHaughan Jody Jamieson - @JodyJamRacing James MacDonald - @JamesOMac26 Anthony MacDonald – @HorseRacingAMac Doug McNair – @DMcNair12 Scott Young – @YoungieAnswers Scott Zeron - @ScottZeron Trainers: Carmen Auciello - @CarmenAuciello Nick Boyd - @Ralphie9 Blair Burgess - @Desibesi Casie Coleman - @FastLane111 Danny Girard - @DannyGirard1 Mark Horner - MarkHorner44 Corey Johnson – @SeaJay09 Blake MacIntosh - @BlakeMacRacing Robert McIntosh - @BobMcIntosh52 Jason McGinnis - @JasonMcGinnis21 Anthony Montini - @MontiniRacing Mike Sinclair - @Sinny51 Shawn Steacy - @S_Steacy‎ by Greg Gangle, for WEG

With the North American breeding season well underway we will continue with our "A Stallion Review" series highlighting the stallions that are making an impact on the harness racing breeding scene. Today we have produced an in depth review for the outstanding racehorse Artistic Fella who had his first crop race as two-year-olds in 2013 in Canada and in Australia. His second crop of two-year-olds are now racing in Australia. Enjoy the read. BREEDING Artistic Fella is a son of the Cam Fella stallion Pacific Fella who earned $1,064,631 on the racetrack and took a best time of 1:48.4. He has been a successful sire in both North America and Australia with his stock having earned $20,727,656 in North America with three millionaires including No Pan Intended $1,613,180 and Romona Disomma $1,033,475. Pacific Fella is already a sire of sires with No Pan Intended already having passed the $28 million mark in earnings at stud. In Australia Pacific Fella made his mark with stake earnings of $8,100,881 (especially with his fillies) including such smart horses as Ima Spicey Lombo $483,686, Ruby Dazzler $350,767 and That's Mister Ali $312,662. Artistic Fella is from an unraced daughter of Artsplace in Everything's Easy, who has had 13 foals for six winners with four in 1:53 headed by Artistic Fella. Other notable winners include Melissa's Fancy 1:52f, ($473,313) and Easy Big Fella 1:50.4 ($246,764) The grand dam is the very smart No Nukes racemare called Everything Goes who took a record of 1:53 on her way to earning $342,033. She left 12 foals for seven winners with one in 1:53 and two in 1:55 including the talented Everything's Great 1:52.1f ($240,391) who is a full sister to Everything's Easy. The third dam is the Meadow Skipper mare in Easy To Love who left 12 foals for 10 winners with four in 1;53 including the smart Wear My Ring 1:52.4f ($284,258). Easy To Love is a three quarter sister to the great racemare Halcyon ($855,588) and a half sister to two sires who stood down under in Present Laughter ($509,912) and Paulsboro ($231,561). What makes Easy To Love so interesting is not only is she the third dam of Artistic Fella but she is also the second dam of his sire, Pacific Fella. So Artistic Fella is 3x3 to Easy To Love. A half sister to Easy To Love in Expressive Moves was imported into New Zealand and left the very smart race mare in That's Life Lavra ($191,346) who has two foals old enough to race for two very good winners in Neffeli Lavra 1:53.9 (Australia) and the 3yo Bio Marinus 1:58.3 mile rate with six wins from just the 16 starts to date. RACE RECORD Lightly raced at two, Artistic Fella faced the starter just four times at that age for three wins including two heats of the New Jersey Sires Stakes on his way to earning $51,250 and taking a mark of 1:53.3.  At three he faced the starter 18 times for 11 wins and $941,558 in stakes with a best winning time of 1:48.4. His biggest win was undoubtedly in the $1,000,000 Meadowlands Pace. That day he won in 1:48.4 beating a top line up including My Boy David ($1,339,281), Shark Gesture ($2,890,594), Total Truth ($2,105,122) and Western Ace ($1,924,290). Another top effort was his win in the $225,000 Berrys Creek final at The Meadowlands in 1:50.3 running his last quarter in 25.4. At four he raced a further 16 times for 7 wins 2 seconds and 3 thirds for $702,107 in stakes with a record of 1:48.4. His wins included the $540,000 Breeders Crown Final in 1:49.2 and the $200,000 Dan Patch final in 1:49.2. The Breeders Crown that year was an outstanding group of great horses. They included Mister Big, Lis Mara, Boulder Creek, Total Truth, Western Shore and Mypanmar. The nine starters had average earnings of $2,201,344 (can you believe that?) Total stakes earned by this group is a staggering $19,812,103. It was a great, great group!  Stepping out again at five, Artistic Fella raced 14 times for 5 wins, 7 seconds and 1 third for earnings of $945,617 and an improved record of 1:48 flat. He took his record in the $500,000 Ben Franklin Final at Chester. With just a little bit of luck he could have doubled his earnings as he ran second in the $702,000 Canadian Pacing Derby (to Mister Big), the $600,000 Haughton final (to Mister Big), the $532,000 Breeders Crown final (to Mister Big) and the $332,000 US Pacing Championships (to Mister Big). Retired at the end of his five year old campaign, he went to stud with a race record of 52 starts for 26 wins and 14 placings for stakes totaling $2,604,532. He took a best time of 1:48 and broke the 1:50 barrier 21 times during his career. NORTH AMERICAN STUD RECORD Artistic Fella stood in Canada and has made a good start to his siring career with his first crop of two year olds racing in the 2013 season. He made it on to the top twenty list of two year old sires in North America and with the hugely reduced stake money on offer in Canada this has been a good start. He was third on the Canadian based sires list behind Shadow Play and Mach Three and you would expect that like his sire, his progeny would improve markedly at three. His best two performers to date are the fillies Porsche Seelster ($107,647) and Regil Meg ($75,748). Others showing up are Allstar Seelster ($43,433), Concert Artist ($42,852), Titus Seelster ($40,125) while Can Art and Western Fella have looked progressive types.   With just the one crop racing in Canada, Artistic Fella has 98 old enough to race (2yo olds in 2013) for 47 starters, 25 race winners, 1 in 1:53, total stakes to date of $599,900. AUSTRALIAN STUD RECORD Artistic Fella's first crop raced as two year olds in the 2012/2013 season and really made a statement. From a foal crop of 80 he produced the best two year old filly in Australia in Mindarie Priddy, now the best three-year-old in Australia p3.1:53.8 ($226,560) as well as Kimba Bay 1:57.5 ($100,273), Artistic Copper ($87,815) Majestic Amy 1:59.4 ($87,390) and Paua Fella 1:58.8 ($37,849). It was a great debut season and his second crop of just 56 foals has started in the same vein with the outstanding two-year-old colt Artistic Flite winning in sensational fashion the Bathurst Gold Final last week already confirming Artistic Flite as the best two-year-old in Australia this season. All up Artistic Fella has had 15 winners from 35 starters in Australia to date for $709,636 in total stakes. POSITIVES His stock are in the main like their sire, displaying both speed and grit. They are good gaited and his fillies seem as good as his colts. They should continue to improve as they mature as both their sire Artistic Fella and grand sire, Pacific Fella did. Has already shown that he has the ability to leave stock that can race and win at the elite level. NEGATIVES The only knock on him so far in North America is the low money his progeny will race for in Canada where he stands as the program there has almost disappeared. Although he has good size crops in Canada it will be difficult for his progeny to make any money of note and this will be a handicap as a stallion in the eyes of the breeding world.. Down under his problem will be the small crops over the next few seasons of just 67 and 42. He did breed big numbers this year at 220 mares. OVERVIEW A very good start to his siring career especially down under. He has a special three-year-old filly in Mindarie Priddy and a special two-year-old colt in Artistic Flite that could carry him through to when his big crop that has just been bred, starts to race. His fillies run as well as his colts which is a big plus but he does need to improve his overall percentages to cement his spot in the stallion market. It is early in his career and if age does help his stock as many predict, then those percentages may improve to the same level achieved by his competitors. OVER ALL RATING  5.5 out of 10 JC  

With the North American harness racing season well underway we continue with 'A Stallion Review' series. Today we have produced an in depth review for the outstanding racehorse Shark Gesture and what impact he might have as a young sire. All statistics shown are as at the 7th of April 2014. Enjoy the read. BREEDING Shark Gesture is by Cams Card Shark, one of the all time greats to have stood at stud in the history of the standardbred breed. His figures are mind blowing and a testament to his siring ability and longevity in a very fashion conscious industry. Not only is he a great sire but he is now firmly established as a sire of sires with the great sire Bettors Delight leading the way. Others by Cams Card Shark  to have made an impact to date are Four Starzzz Shark, Riverboat King, Million Dollar Cam and Aces N Sevens while Roll With Joe and Shadyshark Hanover are young sons now at stud. Total stakes earned to date is $135,345,825. Numbers in 1:50 or better is 58. He has ten million dollar plus earners. Number in 1:53 is 346 and average earnings per starter is $103,555. Simple Gesture is the dam of Shark Gesture and she is an un-raced daughter of Western Hanover who has had six foals of racing age to date for three winners. Apart from Shark Gesture she has produced Shark Ingested 1:49.2f ($277,970) and The Village Rusty 1:51.1f ($145,541). Shark Gesture's second dam is Empty Feeling. She was a very talented mare on the racetrack taking a mark of 1:53.1 on her way to winning $354,657. She carried that into the breeding barn having left five winners from seven foals to date including the high class son of The Panderosa in Ponder 1:48.1m ($1,686,134) and Gotta Feeling 1:52.4f ($235,109). RACE RECORD As a 2yr old he had ten starts for three wins and four placings for $118,971 in stakes. His best win was in the $113,000 Bluegrass Stakes at Lexington in 1;51.3m. He also won a heat of the Breeders Crown and was second in the $156,000 International Stallion Pace. As a 3yr old he had sixteen starts for eight wins and two placings for $677,427 in stakes. His best win was undoubtedly in the final of the $695,000 Breeders Crown. Horses he beat that day included Mister Big,  Artistic Fella,  Jeremes Jet and Total Truth. Other notable wins during the season included the $288,000 Tattersalls Final in 1:49.1 (his record for his 3yr old season) and the $126,000 Bluegrass Final in 1:51 As a 4yr old he had eight starts for two wins and three places for $206,791 in stakes. His best win was in the $120,000 NH Sweepstake in 1:49.2m while he ran second in both the $200,000 Dan Patch final and the $285,000 Graduate Final. At this point he was retired to stud and didn't return to the track for over sixteen months. As a 5yr old he had three starts late in the year in which he ran a third in the last start. As a 6yr old he came back with a vengeance and had 29 starts for seven wins and eight placings for a super $963,890 in stakes, his biggest earnings for a season on the track. He was a constant in all the big races. His best win was arguably in the $685,000 Canadian Pacing Derby in 1:48.1 although his win in the $688,000 W R Haughton Memorial in 1:48.2 was just as impressive. Another stellar win that season was in the $210,000 Graduate Final in 1:49. 2009 $688,000 W R Haughton Memorial As a 7yr old he had another great year on the track with just twelve starts for seven wins and three placings for $918,875 in stakes. He had arguably his best year on the track at seven with his wins in several major races being quite dominant. His best win was in the $702,000 W R Haughton Memorial in 1:48.2 at The Meadowlands. This win was especially significant as this field was full of great horses that have won between them a massive total of $21,435,937 in stakes to date. It included the great Foiled Again ($6,139,210), Won The West ($3,977,956), Bettor Sweet ($2,816,687), Vintage Master ($2,162,979), Hypnotic Blue Chip ($1,794,793) and Mr Wiggles ($1,195,099). 2010 $702,000 W R Haughton Memorial As can be seen Shark Gesture started from the far outside post 9 and was parked out wide at the quarter in 25.4 before getting cover at the half in 52.3 then he was out to attack at the three quarters in 1:20.4 before winning in hand in 1:48.2. An outstanding mile against the very best. Shark Gesture also won the $200,000 Graduate Final in 1:48.4, The $228,000 Bettors Delight Final in 1:48.3, The $200,000 Dan Patch Final in 1:48.1 and was a close second in the $500,000 Franklin Final in 1:49.1. He was timed under 1:50 in ten of his twelve starts that season.  Shark Gesture was timed in 1:47.4 (2nd), 1:47.4 (2nd), 1:47.2 (2nd) and 1:47.3 (5th) during his career. Twice in his career he posted very fast last quarters of 25.4 and 25.3 NORTH AMERICAN STUD RECORD He stood at stud for one season in Canada as a five year old. He bred 73 mares but  there were only 43 foals from mares that were of raceway standard at best. Of that 43 foals he had 33 colts born and just 10 fillies. Twenty four of those won but stakes won have only amounted to $1,261,212 with his best performers being Piston Broke 1:49.2s ($295,330) and Best Ears 1:49.4f ($191,657). He was then moved to Pennsylvania where he bred 87 mares to produce 56 foals that are two year olds in North America in 2014. He has two more crops of 39 and 30 still to come in Pennsylvania. He now stands at Abby Stables in Ohio for the 2014 season. AUSTRALIAN STUD RECORD Again he has only one crop old enough to race which are now five year olds. They number just 18 and there have been twelve starters for four winners for stakes of $90,842. His two best winners have both been fillies with Gesturestar having won 8 and She’s A Killer 10. He has a crop of 24 yearlings in Australia. NEW ZEALAND STUD CAREER He only has one crop on the ground in NZ and that is the crop of 42 yearlings which are due to hit the track next year. POSITIVES The first string to his bow is that he is the biggest stake winning son of the great sire Cams Card Shark with $2,890,594 in stakes.. His soundness over several seasons at the top and the longevity of his performance at the elite level should appeal to Southern Hemisphere breeders where most of the bigger stakes are aimed at the older free for all horses. He only has one crop in NZ which are presently yearlings and they were well received at the NZ yearling sales this year with the likes of  the well respected horseman Jim Dalgety, Tony Herlihy and Nigel McGrath amongst the high profile horsemen to have purchased one. NEGATIVES Management issues coupled with poor promotion have meant he has yet to serve a meaningful book of mares at stud, either in his initial stint at stud or since his retirement in 2010. In todays market very small crops make it impossible to make an impact and can very quickly ruin a stallions career if changes are not made. OVERVIEW A smart racehorse at two and three who matured into a genuine star as an older horse. Retired to stud initially without the necessary runs on the board to attract either the quantity or the quality of mares to make it as a sire in today's marketplace. On his return to the track he matured into a super star and this time he has a much bettor shot at making it. His recent move to Ohio can only help his future prospects and give him the opportunity to achieve as a sire to the level his race record suggests he should be achieving.  OVERALL RATING 4 out of 10 JC    

The Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame is pleased to announce the 2014 inductees. A total of 14 horses and people have been elected to the Hall of Fame.   Wando and Horatio Luro are among the three horses and four people representing Thoroughbreds. Rocknroll Hanover and Wally Hennessey are included on the list of three horses and four people representing Standardbreds. The Thoroughbred Inductees are: Male Horse Category:  Wando - bred and owned by Gustav Schickedanz, Schomberg, Ontario Female Horse Category:  Apelia - bred and owned by Steve Stavros, Knob Hill Stables, Newmarket, Ontario Veteran Horse Category:  Cool Mood – owned by David Wilmot, Kinghaven Farms, King City, Ontario           Veteran People Category:  Horatio Luro – Argentine-born trainer of Northern Dancer           Jockey Category:  Robert Landry - Toronto, Ontario           Builder Category:  William (Bill) Graham - owner of Windhaven Farms, Caledon, Ontario and Lexington, Kentucky           Builder Category:  Arthur Stollery, owner Angus Glen Farms, Unionville, Ontario The    Standardbred Inductees are: Male Horse Category:  Rocknroll Hanover – bred by Hanover Shoe Farms Inc, Hanover, Pennsylvania. Owned by Jeffrey Snyder of New York, New York; Lothlorien Equestrian Centre, Cheltenham, Ontario; and Perretti Racing Stable, LLC, Cream Ridge, New Jersey.            Female Horse Category:  Dreamfair Eternal – bred by Mary and John Lamers, and owned by John Lamers,                 I ngesoll,      Ontario Veteran Horse Category:  Albatross – bred by John E Wilcutts, Aberdeen, North Carolina; Charles A Kenney, Lexington, Kentucky; Elizabeth B Peters, Wilmington Delaware; and Mark Lydon, Abington, Massachusetts.  Owned by Hanover Shoe Farms Inc. Hanover, Pennsylvania; George Segal, Versailles; Castleton Farm, Lexington, Kentucky; Hal S Jones, Montgomery, New York           Trainer/Driver Category: Wally Hennessey, Coconut Creek, Florida           Builder Category: Dr. Ted Clarke, Elmira, Ontario           Builder Category:  Robert Murphy, Vancouver, British Columbia           Communicator Category:   Bill Galvin, Mississauga, Ontario    T        The seven Thoroughbred representatives in the 2014 class include: Wando, one of only seven horses to ever win the Canadian Triple Crown was Canada’s Horse of the Year in 2003 for breeder owner Gustav Schickedanz, an honoured member of the CHRHF.  Trained by Mike Keogh, with Patrick Husbands as his primary jockey, the Langfuhr son retired from racing with 11 wins, eight of them in stakes, in 23 starts and earnings of $2.5 million.  He began his career as a stallion in 2006, first in Kentucky before returning to his birthplace in 2011. Wando’s progeny have earnings in excess of $5.2 million and include Grade 1 winner Turallure.   Apelia, a very fast filly owned and bred by Steve Stavro's Knob Hill Stable, was named Canada's Sovereign Award champion sprinter in 1993.  Conditioned by Hall of Fame trainer Phil England, she won half of her 24 career starts and was a stakes winner at the highest level for three consecutive years.   A winner in New York, Kentucky, New Jersey, as well as Ontario, Apelia was ridden by Hall of Fame jockeys Larry Attard and Don Seymour in all her races except one.  Apelia is the dam of champion mare Saoirse. Cool Mood, herself a daughter of Northern Dancer, won the 1969 Canadian Oaks for Hall of Fame Builder D.G. Willmot, and went on to become one of Canada's most influential broodmares. In fact, she produced two fillies who in turn, would both produce Canadian Triple Crown winners. Her daughter Shy Spirit was the dam of Izvestia, and daughter Passing Mood was the dam of With Approval. The latter is an equine member of the Hall of Fame along with his half-brother, Belmont Stakes winner Touch Gold. Argentine-born trainer Horatio Luro, nicknamed “El Gran Senor” was hired as a trainer by E.P. Taylor and was best known in Canada for training Northern Dancer in 1964, 50 years ago.  During his career, Luro trained 43 Stakes winners including three Queen’s Plate winners. Named Canada’s outstanding jockey in 1993 and 1994, Robert Landry’s stats over a 29 year riding career include 17,656 mounts with purse earnings of $69.7 million and over 2,000 wins.  Of note was his 1999 Atto Mile win on Quiet Resolve, as well as the 2004 Queen’s Plate aboard Niigon.  He rode five consecutive Canadian Champion two-year-old fillies from 1996-2000.   The 2003 Avelino Gomez Memorial Award winner for lifetime achievement as a jockey, Landry has also made significant contributions to the promotion of racing, including participating as a board member for LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society.  W. (Bill) D. Graham has been an integral participant in the horse racing industry for almost half a century as an outstanding breeder, owner and racing executive.  He is the owner of Windhaven Farms which operates in both Caledon, ON and Lexington, KY, and has bred many Sovereign Award-winning horses throughout his career including the 2012 Canadian Horse of the Year Uncaptured.  Graham also bred U.S. Grade I winner Joyful Victory who was victorious in the 2013 Santa Margarita Stakes at Santa Anita.  Arthur W. Stollery was the owner and breeder of two of Canada’s most celebrated racing stars, both CHRHF inductees:   Kennedy Road, named after the location of his Unionville based Angus Glen Farms, dominated Canadian racing for three years.  He was named Champion 2-year-old in 1970 and again Champion as a 3 year-old the following year; 1971. This was followed by more accolades including Canadian Horse of the Year in 1973.  Kennedy Road was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2000 and has a stakes race, which is contested annually at Woodbine, named after him.  Laurie's Dancer, named after Stollery’s daughter, was an outstanding racing daughter of Northern Dancer. She captured the Canadian Oaks in 1971 on her way to being named Canada's Horse of the Year. During that season, she was also victorious in the very prestigious Alabama Stakes at Saratoga.  Laurie's Dancer was enshrined in to the Hall of Fame in 2006.            Standardbred inductees include: Rocknroll Hanover banked more than $3 million during his racing career, for owners Jeffrey Snyder of New York, New York; Lothlorien Equestrian Centre, Cheltenham, Ontario; and Perretti Racing Stable, LLC, Cream Ridge, New Jersey.   Career highlights included victories in Canada’s most prestigious races for two and three year olds, the Metro Pace for two-year-old pacers and the North America Cup for three-year-olds  He then embarked on a second career, becoming one of North America’s most prolific stallions before passing away in 2013.  To date the son of Western Ideal, out of Hall of Fame mare Rich N Elegant,  has sired winners of $60.7 million including eight million-dollar-plus winners.  Dreamfair Eternal retired from racing in 2012 after a seven year career that included 56 victories, and every major stake event on the older pacing mare schedule, earnings of over $2.5 million and Horse of the Year honours in Canada in 2010.  During that year she racked up wins in the final of the Masters Series, an elimination of the Roses are Red Stakes, elimination and final of the Milton Stakes, the elimination and final of the Forest City Pace and the Breeders Crown.  The daughter of Camluck was bred by John and Mary Lamers and owned by John Lamers of Ingersoll, Ontario, while Patrick Fletcher trained her for most of her career.    Wally Hennessey, born in Prince Edward Island and now a resident of Coconut Grove, Florida, has more than 8,500 victories to his credit and has banked earnings in excess of $57 million.  During the early stages of his career, Hennessey re-wrote the record books setting new standards in both wins and earnings.  In the late 1990s, he enjoyed success with the trotter Moni Maker, a winner of $5.5 million and numerous stakes including the Nat Ray in three different years, the Hambletonian Oaks and Breeders Crown.   Throughout his career, Hennessey has been remarkably consistent, winning at least 200 races in each of the last 25 years, and driving horses to earnings in excess of $1 million for 24 straight years.  In the summer of 2007, Hennessey was inducted into the Living Hall of Fame in Goshen, New York. Dr. Ted Clarke is recognized by his peers as a visionary in the horse racing industry.  Clarke’s strong and steady leadership has helped guide Grand River Raceway to be a leader in innovation and growth.  Prior to Grand River’s opening, Clarke led numerous initiatives to put Elmira Raceway on the path to stability, including the inauguration of Industry Day, the Battle of Waterloo and the establishment of the Ontario Teletheatre Network.  He was honoured for his innovative thinking and leadership with the Lloyd Chisholm Achievement Award in 1999 from the Standardbred Breeders of Ontario Association. The late Robert Murphy, a native of Vancouver, British Columbia, was one of Canada’s most respected horse breeders and owners, and was known by his popular Red Star moniker.  First introduced to racing at Cloverdale Raceway in 1980, he rapidly became one of Canada’s most prolific owners.   He averaged 935 starts as an owner each year between 2005 and 2009.  In 2007, at the age of 74, Murphy owned more Standardbreds than anyone else in Canada.  Mr. Murphy had a great impact on harness racing in BC with both his breeding and training centres, but that impact extended across the continent as his horses raced all over North America. A champion on the track and in the breeding shed, Albatross was a major influence on the Standardbred breed.  He won 59 of 71 starts, including the Cane Pace and Messenger Stakes in 1971, and earned in excess of $1.2 million.  Two of his major stakes wins in Canada included the Prix d’Ete and Canadian Pacing Derby.  He retired as both the fastest and richest horse in the history of the breed.  As a sire, Albatross's thousands of sons and daughters have won more than $100 million, including Niatross who is considered by many to be the greatest pacer of the 20th Century, and Fan Hanover who is the only filly to ever win the Little Brown Jug. William (Bill) Galvin, a native of Arnprior, Ontario, and now a resident of Mississauga, Ontario,  made a tremendous impact on horse racing in the country as a Canadian horse racing historian, poet, author, publisher, educator, horseman, humanitarian, publicist and former Thoroughbred racing official.  Galvin’s promotions transcended racing.  He led a charge to bring ice horse racing to the Rideau Canal and expose the sport to thousands of potential fans.  He started the Race for MS fundraiser to gain exposure for the sport, and ran numerous other high profile campaigns dedicated to the well-being of horse racing during his career.   He was also the executive editor of TROT Magazine and a member of the Advisory board for the School of Equine Studies at Toronto’s Humber College of Applied Arts.            The Induction Ceremony will be hosted at the Mississauga Convention Centre on Wednesday, August 6, 2014             From the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame

Cam's Card Shark, one of the leading stallions of his generation, has just been retired from stud duty, but hopes are high in Ohio that one of his greatest progeny can carry on his dynamic legacy in the breeding shed. Shark Gesture, whose earnings in excess of $2.8 million are the most of the more than 1,700 racehorses that Cam's Card Shark sired and one of the fastest with a speed mark of 1:48.1s, will be represented by a crop of two-year-olds this season. Abby Stables in Sugarcreek, Ohio, is standing the big, dark brown stallion.  "Shark Gesture is the total package," Abby Stables' Teresa Maddox told Harness Racing Update."   Shark Gesture developed into a horse for the ages. A $110,000 yearling purchase by Norm Smiley, Shark Gesture raced from two to four, posting some impressive victories.  He was retired to the breeding shed due to an injury and stood as a stallion in Ontario for the 2008 season. Later that year, when the injury had fully healed and he trained excellently, Shark Gesture returned to the races and started three times. But it was as a six- and seven-year-old that he excelled, earning over $1.8 million. He beat some of the best aged pacers, including the likes of Foiled Again, Mister Big, Art Official, Boulder Creek, Artistic Fella, Shadow Play and Won The West 12 times, including by more than 10 lengths in the Hoosier Cup.  Maddox said because Shark Gesture disappeared from the breeding scene for three years people may be confused about his history.  "He really hasn't gotten a fair shake as a stallion," Maddox said. "If you go back and look at some of his races, he was phenomenal. He's well-mannered, he's intelligent and was a bear on the racetrack. It's just a breath of fresh air to have him in Ohio. We welcomed him with open arms." Shark Gesture can be seen in action on his page at www.abbystables.com . His web page comes complete with race footage, photos, pedigree, articles and both a downloadable and digital breeding contract.  "There is no reason because he had 44 foals that raced from his first and only crop as a stallion, standing in Ontario and bred to mostly Ontario-bred mares, that people should have forgotten about him because he went back to the races," said Smiley. "He is still a good horse.  This year he has two-year-olds that are training and I've got good reports on them. Trainer Fred Grant has a colt by Shark Gesture out of Boca Babe.  Fred owns the dam and owns a piece of the colt and said, 'he's very good-gaited, very sound, very willing and has lots of speed. I just love him.'" Trainer David Miller, currently training a two-year-old Shark Gesture filly named Hex, described her as a "big, strong, great-gaited, intelligent filly who is showing excellent speed." Another trainer, Jenny Melander, has a nice sturdy black filly named When Sharks Fly and echoed Miller's comments about Shark Gesture's offspring. "His foals are big and sturdy, with heart, speed, intelligence and strength," she said.   Shark Gesture is truly an anomaly. How many horses return to the races two years after retiring and earn almost twice as much, facing battled-hardened competitors? In total, he posted 31 sub-1:50 miles, 16 of those 1:49 or better and four of those sub-1:49. As a 2-year-old, he won the Bluegrass Stakes (recording a freshman mark of 1:51.3), the Simpson Stakes and an elimination of the Breeders Crown.  At three, he won the Breeders Crown, the Tattersalls Pace (with a sophomore speed mark of 1:49.1), the Bluegrass Stakes, the Simpson Stakes and the Progress Pace. In an abbreviated four-year-old season, he won the New Hampshire Sweepstakes. In his return to the races, he won the William R. Haughton Memorial two years in a row, the Canadian Pacing Derby Final (with a lifetime mark of 1:48.1), the Graduate Series twice, the Dan Patch Invitational Pace and the Bettor's Delight. He broke track records at Tioga Downs and Hoosier Park and tied the track record when he won the Canadian Pacing Derby. "He's won all the big races, beat all the good horses," Maddox said. "He beat Foiled Again (the top aged pacer last year) more than once. He beat Won The West. He's beat them all at one point or another. His owners believed in him so much, they told us the story (of why he retired and then returned to the races) and it was just a no-brainer for us." 2010 Graduate Final William R. Haughton Memorial Smiley recalled why he bought Shark Gesture. Even though he was big and growthy, Smiley liked him, viewing him six times. "There are certain horses you go to the auction and put a price on and you go to that price or a few bucks more," Smiley said. "With him I said I was buying him, period."  Smiley subsequently offered shares to his brother, Gerald, and Thomas and Louis Pantone. Typical of a Cam's Card Shark offspring, Shark Gesture grew into his body from two to three. He stood about 17 hands high and had a long stride. Early in Shark Gesture's two-year-old season, he won the Bluegrass in 1:51 3/5, but he was still developing and growing. As a three-year-old, he did some amazing things, none more so than winning the Breeders Crown only a week after he fell down in a mishap in his elimination race for the final. He finished third and was moved up to second, but Norm Smiley and trainer Erv Miller feared the colt might not survive the accident. Once the bike and equipment were removed, Shark Gesture stood up and walked off as if nothing had happened, although he did have some cuts and abrasions. Driver Brian Sears, Miller, Smiley and the horse's vet shook their heads in disbelief. "If that's not a tough horse, I don't know what is," Smiley said.   A week later, he won the Breeders Crown with George Brennan, who would become his principle driver, steering him in what was a clean trip, racing on or near the pace. "Nobody knew that horse like Georgie," Smiley said.  "George was tremendous with that horse from the first time he drove him." Shark Gesture raced only eight times in an abbreviated four-year-old season and was retired, his notable victory in the New Hampshire. Some of the notable offspring from the 32 starters from his first crop as a sire include stakes winner Piston Broke, 1:49.2s ($291,131) and Best Ears, 1:49.4f, ($188,483). After Shark Gesture recovered from his injury and trained solidly, Norm Smiley made the decision to bring the horse back to the races. It would prove to be a shrewd decision. In 2009 at the age of six, Shark Gesture came into his own, racing 29 times and winning seven, including the Haughton Memorial and Canadian Pacing Derby and topping all pacers with more than $900,000 in earnings. At age seven, he raced 12 times and winning seven, notably the Graduate, Bettors Delight, Dan Patch (by a whopping 10½ lengths), and repeating in the Haughton.  He finished second by a length in the Franklin. He was retired at the end of the season.  "He was just amazing," Norm Smiley said. "This horse never got the respect he deserved. He was a tremendous racehorse." By Perry Lefko, for Harness Racing Update

TORONTO, March 10 - Nominations for Woodbine Entertainment Group's major stakes events, including the $685,000E Metro Pace, $630,000E Canadian Pacing Derby and $550,000E Maple Leaf Trot close Monday, March 1. Also, three-year-old Ontario-sired fillies have a sustaining payment for the 2014 WEG SBOA stakes events. Two-year-olds have sustaining payments due for the 2014 Champlain Open and Champlain Fillies, as well as sustaining payments to be eligible as three-year-olds to the 2015 Simcoe Open, Simcoe Fillies & SBOA. If sending nominations by mail, envelopes must be clearly post-marked no later than the said due date or payment will not be accepted. Registered mail is recommended. To view all nomination forms, please click below. http://www.woodbineentertainment.com/Woodbine/Horsepeople/Standardbred/Pages/StakesNominations.aspx To make an online nomination payment, please click below: https://www.woodbineentertainment.com/Woodbine/Horsepeople/Standardbred/SBNominationForm.aspx by Greg Gangle, for WEG  

The 2014 book for first-year stallion A Rocknroll Dance is now full and closed, according to Diamond Creek Farm's Adam Bowden. A Rocknroll Dance p,2,1:49.1; 3,1:48.1f; 4,1:47.2 ($2,429,441), a multiple World Champion and winner of the Meadowlands Pace, stands at Diamond Creek of Pennsylvania for a stud fee of $6,000. I'd like to thank all who booked to him, from the first one to the last one, Bowden said. We believed in him as a racehorse and we believe in him now as he embarks on his next career. His book is filled with quality from top to bottom. "We're breeding 19 of our own top mares to him, including three millionaires and two Dan Patch winners", he added. Included in that group is Diamond Creek's sparkling 2012 acquisition See You At Peelers p,2,1:51.3f; 3,1:49.2f ($1,573,260), a World Champion and two-time Dan Patch award winner. Other top mares in A Rocknroll Dance's initial court include Loyal Opposition, Loving Caroline, Isabella Blue Chip, Tidewaterdragonfly, Blood Diamond and Apple, the latter two from the immediate maternal families of great producers Cathedra and Arterra. "Dance is a gorgeous stallion, and hopefully his foals will have that great Western Hanover look that his inbreeding suggests", Bowden said. "I think they'll be very popular attractions at the select yearling sales." Diamond Creek Farm For further information contact Adam Bowden: (859) 707-5987, email: diamondcreekfarm@hotmail.com

TORONTO, January 16 - Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) today announced the date of the Pepsi North America Cup, its spotlight Standardbred race, along with the rest of the $12 million 2014 harness racing stakes schedule. The 31st edition of the Pepsi North America Cup will offer a guaranteed purse of $1 million on Saturday, June 14 at Mohawk. The continent's finest three year-old pacers will line up behind the gate, with eliminations scheduled the week prior on June 7. Captaintreacherous captured the race, first staged in 1984, last year. The lucrative June 14 card offers a showcase for the continent's best horses across several divisions, including the $400,000 Fan Hanover for three-year-old pacing fillies, the $325,000 Roses Are Red for older pacing mares, the $270,000 Armbro Flight for trotting mares, the $225,000 Goodtimes for sophomore trotting colts and the $100,000 Gold Cup for older pacing horses. "We are enthusiastic about the 2014 racing season and proud to announce one of the finest stakes programs in North America," said Jamie Martin, Executive Vice President of Racing. "Woodbine Entertainment Group plans to make this the best Pepsi North America Cup ever." Mohawk will once again play host to some of the continent's most prestigious Grand Circuit events. On July 19, the $550,000 Maple Leaf Trot, for older trotters, will be offered for a 62nd time. Market Share won the 2013 renewal. The $685,000 Metro Pace for two year-old pacing colts is set for Saturday, August 30. Ontario-owned, trained & driven Boomboom Ballykeel was victorous in the 2013 edition of the race. Co-featured on the rich Labour Day weekend card are the $650,000 Canadian Pacing Derby for older pacers and the $450,000 Shes A Great Lady Stakes for juvenile pacing fillies. The Canadian Trotting Classic (CTC), for racing's best three year-old colt trotters, will take their positions behind the starting gate on Saturday, September 13 for a purse of $685,000. Royalty For Life won the Hambletonian at the Meadowlands en route to a score in the CTC last year. The $375,000 Peaceful Way final for two year-old trotting fillies, the $365,000 William Wellwood Memorial for two-year-old trotting colts and the $365,000 Elegantimage, for three-year-old filly trotters, are also featured on the mid-September weekend. The Grand Circuit stakes return to Woodbine for its Fall meet in October. The $1.9 million Fall Four (Goldsmith Maid, Three Diamonds, Valley Victory and Governor's Cup), will be contested on Saturday, October 25. These events were last held at Woodbine in 2010. Also in 2014, all finishers in the stakes finals will earn purse money. The winner will continue to receive the traditional 50% of the total purse, while those sixth through last will get 1% each. Those finishing second through fifth will receive 50%-24%-16%-10%, respectively, of the remaining purse. Plus, if 11 horses or fewer declare to start in a stakes series, there will be no eliminations and all declared horses will advance directly to the final. Byes will no longer be issued in stakes events. The stakes nominating process begins February 15. For the entire stakes schedule click here: by Greg Gangle for WEG    

Harnesslink has had such positive feedback on our "forgotten sires series" that we have decided to run a series of reviews on our more prominent harness racing sires. As they say in racing you can criticize some ones car, house or wife but never their horse, and that still rings true. As a disclaimer to our next chapter of analysis we look to provide educated opinion based on years of industry knowledge and the truest form of critique backed by statistical data. These PREVIEWS are set to strip back any sugar coated publicity often associated with Stallion promotion and give you the cold hard facts as JC sees them. (All statistical data was provided by TrackIt for North American stats and for Down Under the official organizations of New Zealand and Australia)  Two days ago we looked at American Ideal and today we review Art Major - Enjoy the read. ART MAJOR BREEDING - By the legendary super sire, Artsplace, he is from the prolific producing Nihalator mare in Perfect Profile who produced 13 foals for 11 winners of over $5 million in stakes.. As well as Art Major she has produced the full brother Perfect Art whose 716 foals have won over $13,653,246 in Australia and Western Edition (by Western Hanover) who stood in Queensland and has 115 three-year-olds and older who have won $665,848 to date in Australia. Art Major was sold as a yearling as Lot 55 at the Tattersalls Sale in Kentucky in 2000. RACE RECORD - Racing from two to four years, he started 49 times for a fantastic record of 32 wins and 9 placings for a massive $3,273,217 in stakes with a 1:48.4m record. Artsplace richest son. His durability is obvious when you consider that he won his last three starts on the racetrack and those wins were in the $824,000 Canadian Pacing Derby, the $729,730 Breeders Crown and the $350,000 US Pacing Championship.   AMERICAN STUD RECORD - He has had seven crops to race so far and what an impact they have made. His first crop is arguably his best producing such stars as Art Official, his richest son at $2,085,185 and his fastest son at p3,1:47, Santanna Blue Chip $1,641,643 p2,1:51.3, Artimittateslife $997,901 p3,1:51.3 and Riggins $931,587 p5,1:48.4. All up seven have won over $500,000 and the average earnings per starter is a massive $132,000. His second crop contained Hypnotic Blue Chip $1,766,053 p4,1:47.2 and Major In Art who only raced as a two-year-old winning $896,060 and taking a time of 1:50.2  while his third crop was highlighted by He's Gorgeous $743,844 p5,1:48.3. His fourth crop contained such stars as Feel Like A Fool $965,633 with a two-year-old record of 1:49.4 and Swinging Beauty $841,245 p4,1:49.4. His fifth crop was led by the very good Handsoffmycookies $1,228,873 p4,1:51,4f and while the sixth crop was down on seasonal champions it did produce three $600,000 winners including the speedy Fool Me Once $639,989 p3,1:48.1s. His seventh and latest crop is headed by the brilliant two-year-old filly in Precocious Beauty $462,912 1:50.1.   US statistics   Eligible to race - 802         Winners - 536         $1,000,000+ 4           Sub 1:50 - 26         Average earning per starter - $100,219   Average earnings per eligible horse - $82,349   Total earnings to date - $66,044,151   AUSTRALIAN STUD RECORD - Looks very much like his North American stud record. He has left a super 398 winners to date including such stars as Sushi Sushi $1,103,327, For A Reason $724,333, Lady Euthenia $461,285 and Louvre $402,665. Consistently at or near the top of the two and three year old sires list and with 38 $100,000 winners to date ,he produces depth to back the stars.   Australian statistics   Foals 3yr old and older - 658           Winners - 398   % of winners to foals born 3yr old and older - 60%   $100,000 plus - 38    $1,000,000 plus - 1         Average earnings per starter - $34,876   Average earnings per eligible horse - $28,515   Total earnings to date - $18,763,192         NEW ZEALAND STUD RECORD - Has so far left 96 winners in New Zealand but his record does not appear to be as strong as it is in Australia or North America. The probable reason is that he only bred 35 foals in New Zealand in his initial three crops that are 5yr olds, 6yr olds and 7yr olds. Out of that small group he left the very good 2 & 3yr old Major Mark that won $574,109 before he was exported to Australia. Art Major's first serious crop are now 4yr olds and there are 95 foals and already this crop has produced 52 individual winners including the good mare Onlyforyou $292,874 and Glenferrie Shuffle $248,870 (Australia). He has 98 foals in his 3yr old crop for 28 winners to date including the brilliant Isaiah $375,861, Sky Major $241,623 and Angelina Jolie $101,000. His 3yr old fillies finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th in a Sire Stakes race yesterday at Alexandra Park in Auckland.   New Zealand statistics   3yr old and older - 229   Starters - 121   Winners -  96   % of winners to foals born 3yr old and older - 42%   $100,000 plus - 6   $1,000,000 plus - 0   Average earnings per starter - $26,363   Average earnings per eligible horse - $13,930   Total earnings to date - $3,189,983   POSITIVES - Has a fantastic record in both North America ($66,044,151 to date) and Australia ($18,750,000 to date) and is starting to gain a good record in New Zealand. Consistency is the key with his stud record with no drop off in the high standard he has set from day one. They come to hand quickly and have a great record at two and three.   NEGATIVES - In Australia and New Zealand they have a reputation for been world beaters one week and just nice horses the next. At times they are prone to disappoint after promising so much.    As of yet they have not made the transition from age group racing to the Grand Circuit in any great numbers with only Sushi Sushi, For A Reason and Major Mark making more than $500,000 in stakes to date and that is from a total of 887 foals 3yrs old and older.    OVERVIEW - His record overall is outstanding. His sons such as Art Official, Santanna Blue Chip and Major In Art are starting to establish themselves as sires and his daughters are doing the same in the brood mare paddock. All in all, a fantastic sire who leaves top 2yr olds and top 3yr olds and will continue to exert a major influence over the breed for years to come.    OVERALL RATING - 8/10   JC   A Sire review - American Ideal

On Wednesday, December 18, Standardbred Canada announced the finalists for the 2013 O’Brien Awards, which honour Canada’s best in harness racing over the past season. The winners will be announced at the annual O’Brien Awards Black Tie Gala on Saturday, February 8, 2014. This year marks the 25th edition of the O’Brien Awards, named in honour of the late Joe O’Brien, an outstanding horseman and member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. Nine past O’Brien Award winners are looking to add to their trophy collections and are either defending titles or are nominated in a new division. These past winners include: Anndrovette, Bee A Magician, Foiled Again, I Luv The Nitelife, Intimidate, Mister Herbie, Sylvain Filion, Robert McIntosh Stables Inc. and Seelster Farms. Sylvain Filion will defend the Driver of the Year title against first-time nominee Doug McNair. Filion, 44, of Milton, ON, is currently the leading money winning driver on the WEG circuit with over $5 million to his credit between Mohawk and Woodbine. With 281 victories, he is closing in on Scott Zeron for the title as WEG’s top dash winning driver. He has a good shot of achieving that as Zeron has moved to The Meadowlands. A career winner of 7,477 races, Filion recently surpassed $6 million in earnings in 2013 in addition to going over $80 million in his career. He is also the regular driver for O’Brien finalist, Intimidate. Doug McNair, 24, of Guelph, ON, is enjoying a productive year as he’s driven 292 winners to go along with $5.6 million in purse earnings, his second best year on record ever for money. McNair was the regular driver for O’Brien finalists Precocious Beauty and Love Canal. There will be a new name beside the Trainer of the Year category as Gregg McNair and Richard Moreau are looking for their first National title. McNair, 52, of Guelph, ON, is en route to a career year and sits second in the Canadian trainer earnings standings. McNair conditions O’Brien finalist Precocious Beauty and to date has trained 109 winners and horses to $3.1 million in purse earnings. Moreau, 49, of Puslinch, ON, was a finalist in this category last year. The conditioner has been a mainstay on the WEG circuit for the last decade. He leads the Canadian trainer standings with $3.5 million in earnings and 270 wins. He celebrated the biggest win of his career this past season when Boomboom Ballykeel captured the $683,000 Metro Pace at Mohawk Racetrack. Kelly Hoerdt, 47, of Beaumont, AB, receives his third nomination for the O’Brien Award of Horsemanship and he is up against first time nominee Paul MacKenzie. Kelly Hoerdt is a successful horsemen who is annually near the top of the training and driving charts in Alberta. He’s been training in Alberta on and off for 25 years. Hoerdt was the leading trainer in earnings at Alberta Downs this year. He’s currently in the top five trainers at Northlands for both wins and money and sits in sixth at Northlands in the driving charts. Hoerdt has 66 wins and $487,528 in earnings as a driver and 81 wins and $616,517 as a trainer. Paul MacKenzie, 52, of Puslinch, ON, has been driving and training for over 35 years and has managed to be one of the top B circuit drivers for decades. The Charlottetown native is the all time leader in driving wins at Flamboro Downs. In 2013 he was the third leading dash winner at Grand River and in the top 10 drivers at Flamboro. Paul drove 169 winners and horses to earnings in excess of $1 million in 2013. He didn’t focus much on training. Unfortunately MacKenzie suffered some injuries at Grand River in late October and has not driven since. Precocious Beauty and Shes Da Bomb, both sired by Art Major, are the finalists in the Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly category. Precocious Beauty won 7 of 11 races, $462,912 and took a mark of 1:50.1 which happened to tie a World Record for the mile track. Her richest payday was a victory in the $451,000 Shes A Great Lady at Mohawk. Shes Da Bomb had 5 wins in 8 starts and earnings of $216,056. She paced to her season’s record of 1:50.3 at The Red Mile. Both fillies captured divisions of the Eternal Camnation Stakes and Champlain at Mohawk. Arthur Blue Chip and Luck Be Withyou didn’t battle each other much on the racetrack but the two will vie for the Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt title. Arthur Blue Chip scored 6 wins in 11 starts, bankrolled $400,120 and took a mark of 1:51.2 in an elimination of the Metro at Mohawk before being scratched from the final. His most lucrative payday was a runner-up finish in the Governor’s Cup. He also won a handful of Ontario Sires Stakes races, an elimination of the Battle of Waterloo and a division of the Nassagaweya. Luck Be Withyou’s victory in the Breeders Crown at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs was the highlight of a 40 year partnership between owner John Craig and trainer Bill Cass. Luck Be Withyou had 5 wins in 11 races and $363,402 in purse earnings. He took a mark of 1:50 in an elimination of the Breeders Crown, and also scored a victory in a division of the Champlain at Mohawk. I Luv The Nitelife returned as a seasoned sophomore and looks to add another O’Brien to her trophy case. She is up against Love Canal in the three-year-old pacing filly division. I Luv The Nitelife boasted a record of 13-1-1 in 15 races and $1.2 million in earnings. She took a mark of 1:48.4 in the Valley Forge at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. She also set a two-heat world record of 3:42.2 in the Jugette. She swept the Fan Hanover, the Lynch, the Mistletoe Shalee and closed the season as strongly as she began with a win in the Breeders Crown and runner-up finish in the American National. Love Canal put together a record of 4-3-1 in 13 races, earned $344,693 and took a mark of 1:50.1 at Mohawk in the Canadian Breeders Championship one week after her win in the elimination. She also had victories in the final of the SBOA Stake and an Ontario Sires Stakes event. Sunshine Beach and Vegas Vacation are finalists in the sophomore pacing colt category. Sunshine Beach hit for 16 top three finishes, including eight wins in 20 starts for earnings of $913,702. He defeated Captaintreacherous in the Battle of the Brandywine in a 1:47.4 world record mile at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in August and was a runner-up to the division leader in the Breeders Crown. He was also victorious in the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes, Bluegrass Stakes and the Progress Pace. Vegas Vacation put together a sophomore record reading 10-4-1 in 20 starts while banking $976,037 in purses with major wins in the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes, Empire Breeders Classic, Simcoe Stakes, Little Brown Jug and the Matron Stakes. He was also a close runner-up in the Hempt Memorial, the Tattersalls Pace and the Adios. Anndrovette is looking to defend her crown as Canada’s Older Pacing Mare against the talented Rocklamation. Anndrovette is looking for her third consecutive trophy as the country’s top pacing mare following a season where she scored 7 wins and bankrolled $564,827. She took a mark of 1:48 at Mohawk in the Roses Are Red Final -- a Canadian record -- and also posted a win in the elimination. She won three legs of the Blue Chip Matchmaker, an elimination of the Breeders Crown and finished third in the final. Rocklamation won 5 of 21 races and earned $546,217 on the season while posting a mark of 1:49.3 in the Golden Girls at The Meadowlands. She won two legs of the Blue Chip Matchmaker and captured the Milton Stakes at Mohawk. A Rocknroll Dance and Foiled Again are the Older Pacing Horse finalists. Multiple World Champion A Rocknroll Dance was the first horse in harness racing history to pace three consecutive sub-1:48 wins. Those scores came this year in an invitational at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs (1:47.4f) and in the elimination and final of the Canadian Pacing Derby (1:47.3-1:47.2). He established World Records as a four-year-old on both five-eighths and half-mile tracks. His 1:49.1 world mark on a half was taken winning the Battle Of Lake Erie at Northfield over Foiled Again, and his 1:47.4 world mark on a five-eighths came in an invitational race at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. He defeated the best older pacers of the year in winning the Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk in track and Canadian record time. A Rocknroll Dance has been retired from racing and will begin his stud career in 2014 at Diamond Creek Farm in Pennsylvania. The $6 million horse, Foiled Again didn’t show any signs of slowing down in his nine-year-old season as he won 11 of his 29 starts, including three Levy divisions, the Ben Franklin elimination and final as well as the Breeders Crown elimination and final, for his third straight million-dollar campaign. Following Foiled Again's final start of the year, trainer Ron Burke noted that the iron tough pacer has exceeded his expectations with all of his accomplishments. He earned $1.4 million on the year, while surpassing the $6 million career marker and closed the season sweeping the elimination and final of the TVG Free For All Pace at The Meadowlands. Miss Aultsville and Riveting Rosie are nominees in the two-year-old filly trotting category. Miss Aultsville established a stakes, track and Canadian record of 1:59.2 for two-year-old trotting fillies on a half-mile track in an Ontario Sires Stakes event, one of her two season wins. She earned just over $151,000 on the season. Riveting Rosie closed out her 2013 campaign with six wins, one second and one third in eight starts and earnings of $468,613. Riveting Rosie’s major victories were the Peaceful Way Final, The Ontario Stakes Super Final and a division of the Champlain. Father Patrick and Muscle Matters will face off in the Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt division. Father Patrick topped the earnings chart in his division and was flawless in 10 stakes starts with his only blemish coming in an early season two-year-old race where he was beaten by just a head. Father Patrick amassed $752,395 in earnings with major wins in the Breeders Crown, Peter Haughton Memorial, William Wellwood Memorial Trot, Champlain Stakes and Bluegrass Stakes. Muscle Matters was lightly raced but earned $218,800 in 6 starts, half of which he won. He took his mark of 1:55.4 in winning the OSS Super Final at Mohawk. Bee A Magician, who was perfect in her 2013 season, is up against Motown Muscle in the Three-Year-Old Trotting Filly division. Bee A Magician won all 17 of her 2013 races and earned in excess of $1.57 million for a perfect sophomore season. The invincible filly took a mark of 1:51 at The Meadowlands and won the SBOA elimination and final, the Casual Breeze, the Elegantimage elimination and final, three Ontario Sires Stakes events including the Super Final, the Delvin Miller, Hambletonian Oaks elimination and final, the Simcoe, Breeders Crown elimination and final, American National and Moni Maker. Motown Muscle enjoyed a productive 2013 campaign, hitting for 6 wins in 14 races and $331,423 in purse money. She took a mark of 1:53.4 at Mohawk and racked up wins in a division of the Casual Breeze, Canadian Breeders Championship elimination and final, and several Ontario Sires Stakes events. Flanagan Memory and Your So Vain are the sophomore trotting colt nominees. Flanagan Memory won seven of 11 races for $408,798 in earnings. He clocked a season’s best 1:53 effort in winning the OSS Super Final at Mohawk. He also scored victories in the Goodtimes and several OSS events. Your So Vain was a winner of 5 of 13 and $382,105. He posted a mark of 1:52.4 in winning an elimination of the Canadian Trotting Classic. He also added wins in the Simcoe Stakes, Bluegrass Stakes, and a heat of the Kentucky Futurity to his resume. Bax Of Life and Maven are the Older Trotting Mare finalists. Bax of Life won 4 of 23 races and earned just over $155,000. She took a mark of 1:52.2 at The Red Mile. She was a nose winner in a Breeders Crown elimination and second in the Miss Versatility. Since winning the 2012 Breeders Crown at Woodbine Racetrack, Maven has been one of the most consistent trotters in North America. She swept the Miss Versatility Trotting Series including a 1:51.4 World Record in the final at Delaware. She also added wins in an elimination and the final of the Armbro Flight and Allerage to her credentials. She showed just how good she was by claiming a second Breeders Crown title. At season’s end Maven had won 10 of 14 races, and added $513,485 to her coffers. Intimidate and Mister Herbie are the Older Trotting Horse finalists. Both horses were O’Brien winners in 2012 – Intimidate as Canada’s Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year and Mister Herbie as Canada’s Older Trotting Horse. Intimidate stepped up to the Older Trotting Horse ranks to win 7 of 9 on the year and bank $176,000. He won several Preferred events and took a mark of 1:51 in the Credit Winner at Vernon Downs. Although Mister Herbie only won one race in 2013, he was a strong contender in many of the major stakes and scored six runner-up finishes in races including the Maple Leaf Trot, Allerage, John Cashman Memorial and Breeders Crown, finishing the season with $492,067. Robert McIntosh Stables Inc. and Seelster Farms are nominated in the Armstrong Breeder of the Year category, and are both previous winners of this award. McIntosh’s 98 starters have accounted for 228 wins and just over $2 million in earnings in 2013, while Seelster-bred horses have posted 254 victories and $2.1 million in purse earnings. In the Future Star Category, the finalists for this first-time award are Travis Cullen and Patrick Shepherd. Horseman Travis Cullen, 21 of Edmonton, AB, closed out Alberta Downs' 2013 meet with five wins on the last day of racing while securing both the Lacombe track's driving and training titles. Amidst a career-best year of over $366,000 in trainer earnings and over $577,000 in driving earnings, the Edmonton horseman concluded the Alberta meet with a chart-topping 64 training victories and 86 driving wins. His 2013 total of 109 training wins in Canada places him fourth among all trainers while his .430 UTRS leads the nation. Patrick Shepherd, 21, of Lynden, ON, trained 112 winners and horses to $542,799 in earnings. His Canadian win total ranks as the third best among all conditioners, as does his .389 training average. One of the 24 horse nominees will be honoured as Canada’s Horse of the Year. The winners will be announced at the O’Brien Awards Gala on Saturday, February 8, 20114, at the Delta Prince Edward in Charlottetown, PE. The complete list of finalists and owners is as follows. 2013 O’Brien Award Nominees Pacers Two-Year-Old Filly Pacer Precocious Beauty - owned by James L Avritt Sr., Lebanon, KY Shes Da Bomb – owned by F. Bellino And Sons LLC, Bronxville, NY   Two-Year-Old Colt Pacer Arthur Blue Chip – owned by Dr. Ian Moore, Guelph, ON – R G McGroup Ltd., Bathurst, NB – Serge Savard, Saint-Bruno, QC Luck Be Withyou – owned by John H. Craig, North York, ON   Three-Year-Old Filly Pacer I Luv The Nitelife - owned by Richard P. Young, Boca Raton- Joanne Young, Coconut Creek, FL Love Canal - owned by Let It Ride Stables Inc – Robert Cooper Stables LLC, Boca Raton, FL - J and T Silva Stables LLC, Long Beach, NY   Three-Year-Old Colt Pacer Sunshine Beach - owned by Hudson Standardbred Stb Inc., Hudson- Conrad Leber, Montreal QC – Diane Bertrand, Edmonton, AB Vegas Vacation – owned by West Wins Stable, Cambridge- Adriano Sorella, Milton – Anthony B Beaton, Waterdown – Phyllis M Saunders, Hamilton, ON   Older Pacing Mare Anndrovette - owned by Bamond Racing LLC, Brick – Joseph Davino, Clarksburg, NJ Rocklamation - owned by J and T Silva Stables LLC, Long Beach, NY – Stable 45, Boynton Beach, FL- Our Horse Centre Stables, Clifton Park, NY   Older Pacing Horse A Rocknroll Dance - owned by A Rocknroll Dance Stable, Wauseon, OH Foiled Again - owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Fredericktown – Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Canonsburg, PA – JJK Stables LLC, Fort Lauderdale, FL   Trotters   Two-Year-Old Filly Trotter Miss Aultsville - owned by Old Aultsville Stable, Mississauga, ON – Pealer Pen, Camp Hill, PA – John Kopas Stables Ltd. Milton, ON Riveting Rosie - owned by Parkhill Stud Farm, Peterborough – Don Allensen, Wyoming – J And T Stable Newmarket – John F Hayes, Sharon, ON   Two-Year-Old Colt Trotter Father Patrick - owned by Father Patrick Stable, East Windsor, NJ Muscle Matters - owned by Nunzio Vena, Bolton – Santo Vena, Brampton – Benoit Baillargeon, Rockwood – Richard Thompson, London, ON   Three-Year-Old Filly Trotter Bee A Magician – owned by Melvin Hartman, Ottawa, ON – Herb Liverman, Miami Beach – David H McDuffee, Delray Beach, FL Motown Muscle - owned by Bet Max Stables Inc., Casco – Benenati Inc., Clinton Twp, MI   Three-Year-Old Colt Trotter Flanagan Memory - owned by Liette Flanagan, Repentigny-Rene Dion, Saint-Lazare, QC Your So Vain – owned by P G Van Camp Stables, Port Perry, ON   Older Trotting Mare Bax Of Life – owned by Jerry Duford – Joanne S Wray, Campbellville, ON Maven - owned by William J. Donovan, Ft Lauderdale, FL   Older Trotting Horse Intimidate – owned by Judith Farrow, Hemmingford – Luc Blais, Lochaber Ouest, QC Mister Herbie – owned by Jeffrey R Gillis, Hillsburgh – Mac T Nichol, Burlington, ON- Gerald T Stay, Buffalo, NY   People Awards   O’Brien Award of Horsemanship Kelly Hoerdt, Beaumont, AB Paul MacKenzie, Puslinch, ON   Armstrong Breeder of the Year Robert McIntosh Stables Inc., Windsor, ON Seelster Farms, Lucan, ON   Driver of the Year Sylvain Filion, Campbellville, ON Doug McNair, Guelph, ON   Trainer of the Year Gregg McNair, Guelph, ON Richard Moreau, Puslinch, ON   Future Star Award Travis Cullen, Edmonton, AB Patrick Shepherd, Lynden, ON

The sensational racing career of the 9-year-old pacer Foiled Again has produced so many rich moments, hues, and tones, it seems good to step back a bit and look at how this horse has achieved what he has in his remarkable racing career. As he prepares to contest in this Saturday’s American-National Pace at Balmoral Park, this is one person’s making sense of some of the stupendous achievements of Foiled Again. Should Foiled Again win this Saturday, it would be the sixth major stake that Foiled Again has won twice, matching with his 2011 Am-Nat FFA pace triumph. He had won two straight Indiana/Hoosier Park Pacing Derbies coming into last week, but was second to Pet Rock last Saturday. Foiled Again has also won the following events twice: the Kane (Batavia), the Levy (Yonkers), the Quillen (Harrington), the Molson (London), and the Battle Of Lake Erie (Northfield). And wondrously, he has raced in the last FIVE editions of the last four stakes named above! And yes, for you sharp-eyed, the five tests in the paragraph immediately above all are contested on half-mile tracks, and the lifetime starts leave little doubt that Foiled Again has rolled up a superior record on twice-arounds: HMT      78 starts              42 wins                20 seconds          8 thirds                 $2,555,317 FMT       65                          24                          17                          6                     $1,394,370 SMT       11                          4                            5                            4                     $   941,446 MT         41                          4                            8                            9                     $   824,735                (7                           3                            2                            1                    $   390,515                               at mile tracks outside New Jersey – more on that later.)    To put those stats in further perspective, one needs to look at Foiled Again’s record at the two tracks in the shadow of the Big Apple, Yonkers and Meadowlands. At Yonkers lifetime, Foiled Again has a 39-26-9-3 record for earnings of $1,297,275 (yes, a million-dollar bankroll just at one track!) He has won 2/3rds of his trips behind the gate at Empire City, and he has been in the money in 38 of his 39 starts – the only non-1-2-3 coming … in his last race there, May 25 in an Open, when he was third-over and then had cover three-wide, but couldn’t rally into the race. As noted, Foiled Again has taken part in the last 5 Levy Series, and here in his record in the elims and finals: 27 starts for 18-7-2, and $1,169,150 – just in the Levy Series alone! He won the Final in 2009 and 2010, and has been 3-2-2 in the last three finals. And it is worth noting that in the prelims, he is “only” 8-3-4-1 in March, but incredibly 14-13-1-0 in April prelims (a good addition to your harness trivia horse name list is “Jeremy’s Successor,” the only horse to defeat Foiled Again in 14 April Levy prelims). 18.3 miles away from Yonkers according to Google, but an ocean away in terms of performance for Foiled Again, is The Meadowlands (a mile track). North Jersey fans have seen Foiled Again 34 times live, but the fact is that they have only seen him win ONCE – in the Graduate on May 14, 2011, when he overcame first-over to win in 1:49.3, LQ 28.2. (That race broke a personal 21-race losing streak at Meadowlands for Foiled Again, but since then he has “established” a 12-race skein – which means that 33 out of 34 times he’s raced there, fans have torn up their win tickets on him.) All is not futility in a sentence with “Foiled Again” and “Meadowlands” both in it, though – he has earned $434,220 there, largely on the strength of six seconds and eight thirds. That $434,220 in earnings at The Meadowlands, by the way, ranks it sixth in the generosity to lifetime bankroll department for Foiled Again – a horse who has earned $100,000 at no fewer than 12 different tracks (the other six behind Meadowlands in order: London, Woodbine, Indiana Downs, Northfield, Tioga, and Lexington). Here are the top five, with lifetime record: Yonkers                39 starts              26 wins                9 seconds            3 thirds                 $1,297,275 Pocono                  9                            5                            1                            2                    $   695,886                ($537,500 of that this year in sweeping the Franklins and the Crowns) Mohawk              5                            2                            0                            3                       $   603,296                (his biggest single check, $397,435, came in a Canadian Pacing Derby here) Harrington (!)     9                            6                            3                            0                         $   590,000                (undefeated in 4 Quillen prelims, and 2-1-1-2-2 in his Quillen Finals) Harrah’s               46                          16                          12                          4                       $   459,660                (most starts, 2nd-most wins, home when he blossomed as a 4YO in 2008) One other thing to note in the Meadowlands / Foiled Again story: his known propensity to do better in the spring and fall, and his frequent sagging in midseason. Statistics certainly bear this out: January                4 starts                 2 wins                   1 second              0 thirds February              8                            2                            2                            0 March                  15                          3                            6                            1 April                      23                         14                          3                            1 May                      24                          9                            5                            5 June                      17                          4                            3                            1 July                       22                          3                            4                            7 August                  22                          4                            4                            8 September          17                          11                          4                            2 (100% on board) October               20                          10                          9                            1 (100% on board) November           18                          10                          5                            1 December             5                            2                           1                            0 Things to note from this table: first, to continue the Meadowlands theme, his only win there was in May, and in the sixth, seventh, and eighth month, with M(1)’s concentration of stakes racing, his record there is 15-0-4-6; and after unbelievably never missing the board in September and October careerwise, the two times where he wasn’t a show factor in November were on 11-30-08, where he had to two-move from the outside at Philly and missed a length in fourth, and … his previous start at Balmoral, in the 2012 American-National, where he had to again two-move from an outer slot and never could reach runaway leader (1:19 to the ¾) Foreclosure N. Oh, one other little thing that should be mentioned – with his second-place finish at Hoosier, Foiled Again pushed his lifetime bankroll to $5,705,968. Lord knows there has been enough international controversy about who’s #1 all-time, how to convert U.S. dollars to euros to whatnot, but I’ll jump in anyway: the USTA release proclaiming Ready Cash as the #1 world earner had his bankroll at $5,718,375 on September 7, and since then (on September 18) he won 25,000 euros ($32,703US using the 1-1-13 Euro/US dollar rate), which would put his “up-to-date” earnings at … $5,751,078. So if Foiled Again finishes 1-2 at Balmoral for the $200,000 purse, check out the earnings those spots pay – and be ready for a piece of history. By Jerry Connors for Harnesslink.com

Multiple World Champion and 2012 Meadowlands Pace winner A Rocknroll Dance has been retired from racing and will begin his stud career in 2014 at Diamond Creek Farm of Pennsylvania, according to Diamond Creek owner Adam Bowden. A Rocknroll Dance p,2,1:49.1; 3,1:48.1f; 4,1:47.2-’13, by Rocknroll Hanover and from a half-sister to supersire Western Hanover, won $2,429,441 and was the first horse in history to take three consecutive sub-1:48 wins. Those scores came this year in an invitational at Pocono (1:47.4f) and then the elim and final of the $651,000 Canadian Pacing Derby (1:47.3-1:47.2). He established World Records as a four year old on both five-eighths and half-mile tracks. His 1:49.1 world mark on a half was taken winning the Battle Of Lake Erie at Northfield over Foiled Again, and his 1:47.4 world mark on a five-eighths came in the invite at Pocono. In addition, he set the pace for World Record miles for Bolt The Duer as a three year old (1:47.4f in the Adios Final) and Pet Rock as a four year old (1:47.2f at Scioto). He would later defeat all three of those horses in his tour de force winning the Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk in track and Canadian record time. “I think fans know he was among the fastest of a tremendous group of FFA pacers this year,” Bowden said. “But his speed didn’t develop late… he won the Metro elim and the Governor’s Cup at two in 1:49.1 and 1:51, and at three he won the Meadowlands Pace and Battle of Brandywine in identical times of 1:48.1.” Bowden noted that the horse had evidently suffered an earlier undiagnosed injury, perhaps after his last race in Lexington, which led to a subpar performance in the recent Breeders Crown elim. Bowden said A Rocknroll Dance is now being syndicated, and that his fee will be announced soon. *video attached - A Rocknroll Dance winning the 2012 Meadowlands Pace * * *  END  * * * Diamond Creek Farm  

WILKES-BARRE PA - It's approaching noon on Thursday, September 26, and the world's fastest Standardbred race horse of the 2013 season is already done his work for the day. Warrawee Needy took to the Pocono Downs track this morning to compete in a qualifying race, and he made short work of that assignment: from post seven in the field of eight, he briefly tucked second during an opening split of 30, then marched to the lead and posted these splits: 58.2, 1:25.2, and 1:52, winning by nearly a dozen lengths. (That's an individual last ¾ in 1:21.4, a last half in 53.3, and a last quarter in 26.3). Not a bad morning's work. It's been a while since Warrawee Needy's last been in the spotlight, so a brief "catch-up" may be in order: After briefly holding the title of "The World's Worst-Drawing Horse" (in three weeks at The Meadowlands: post six of seven, post ten of ten, and post eight of nine-wide with a trailer; then to Tioga, getting post eight of nine with a trailer), Warrawee Needy won on North America Cup night, then won eliminations for the Haughton and U.S. Pacing Championships, losing the finals when left with first-over trips. The U.S. Pacing Championship Final was Hambletonian Day at The Meadowlands, August 3. He was entered for the August 24 Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations, but had to be scratched when he did not appear for retention time. Warrawee Needy had been owned by Ontarians Thomas Kyron, Dr. Michael Wilson, Floyd Marshall, and trainer Carl Jamieson from September 11, 2010 until September 3, 2013, when his registered ownership changed to Jamieson and noted New York-based trainer Mark Ford. The horse qualified the next day at Mohawk with Jamieson as trainer, winning in 1:53.3, last half 55.4. No further news surfaced until this past Monday, when his ownership took on two new partners, longtime Ford associate Robert DiNozzi of New York and David Shea of Ontario. He qualified today with Ford as the listed trainer - and with Mark MacDonald in the sulky. Ford/MacDonald had been the team behind "Needy" when he raced in the Aquarius series at The Meadowlands in March. MacDonald, of course, already has had the ride behind another accomplished free-for-aller, Bolt The Duer, who had co-held the records for 5/8-mile tracks (1:47.4) and half-mile tracks (1:49), until both were recently broken (1:47.2f, 1:48.1h) by Pet Rock. Where now for Warrawee Needy? Well, the track at which he qualified today may give some hint ...   by Jerry Connors  

Clear Vision might be just now catching the eyes of harness racing fans after his dramatic stretch duel with A Rocknroll Dance in last weekend's Canadian Pacing Derby, but trainer Ron Burke said the 7-year-old gelding's recent good form is not a surprise to him. Although he has only two wins in 19 starts, Clear Vision has four second-place finishes in his last five races. He missed by a nose against A Rocknroll Dance in the Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk, timed in a track- and Canadian-record-equaling 1:47.2, one week after losing by a neck to A Rocknroll Dance in their CPD elimination. On Aug. 17, Clear Vision was second by a half-length to Bolt The Duer in the Joe Gerrity Jr. Memorial at Saratoga in a world-record-equaling 1:49 mile. Clear Vision's next start is Monday in the second of two eliminations for the Bobby Quillen Memorial at Harrington. Clear Vision, who won last year's Bettor's Delight and was second in the Molson Pace, was sidelined in July 2012 because of a suspensory injury and didn't return to the races until March. "People think he just got good, but he was good last year just before we had to quit with him," Burke said. "It just took longer than we thought it would to get him back rolling this year." Clear Vision has won 21 of 131 career races and earned $1.54 million, including $390,603 this season. The son of Western Hanover-Artistic Vision is a half-brother to 2010 Horse of the Year Rock N Roll Heaven. He will be driven in the Quillen elim by Brett Miller, who has been behind the horse in his last three starts. Clear Vision will start from post two in the six-horse field and is the 8-5 morning line favorite. "Brett has done a wonderful job with him," Burke said. "It's funny, the only driver who doesn't get along with him is Yannick (Gingras), and Yannick will admit to it. Yannick can't understand it. He's tried to do it different ways with him and he just doesn't seem to fire with Yannick." Gingras will drive Burke's Escape The News in the second Quillen elim, two races after driving 7-5 favorite Foiled Again in the first elim. Foiled Again, the richest pacer in harness racing history with $5.29 million in career earnings, was third in the Canadian Pacing Derby. Foiled Again, who this year at age 9 has won five of 20 and hit the board a total of 15 times, captured the Quillen in 2010 and 2011. He was the Pacer of the Year in 2011 and voted the best older male pacer in 2012. "He's been really good," Burke said. "In his last start he went in 1:47.3, which is the fastest he's ever paced in his life. Foiled has been racing as good or better than he ever has, there are just better horses right now. It's just that the 4-year-olds, which is what I said at the beginning of the year, have been so good. "It's hard to win. Last year, (1):47.3 with a 26-second final quarter wins the Canadian Pacing Derby. This year, it's third. The horses have just gotten better." Burke's Atochia also is in the first Quillen elimination, along with Sapphire City, McErlean and Dynamic Youth. In the second elim, Clear Vision and Escape The News are joined by Heston Blue Chip, Malak Uswaad N, Mel Mara and Michael's Power. The top four finishers from each elimination advance to the $223,500 final on Sept. 16. "They're short fields, but they're very equal fields," Burke said. "I don't think it looks to be a problem for Clear Vision or Foiled; they both should easily make the finals I think. Hopefully, we can get in all four." by Ken Weingartner  

65 to 80 of 131