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July 29, 2017 - Harness racing driver Johnny Takter teamed the Stefan Melander trained Volstead (6m Cantab Hall-Madame Volo-Yankee Glide) to victory in Saturday’s Hagmyren V75 Gold (150,000SEK to the winner, 1640 meters autostart, 12 starters) clocked in a sharp 1.10kr. Volstead now has 19 wins in 53 outings for 4,687,824SEK earned in his racing career. Magic Tonight (8m Andover Hall-Miss Possessed-Self Possessed) was second for Orjan Kihlstrom ahead of Francais du Gull (10m Jag de Bellouet-Tantiem Gull-Lindy Lane) and driver Torbjorn Jansson. The USA winner was bred by Arden Homestead Stable of Delhi, NY. The undercard included a victory in the V75 Silver (125,000SEK to the winner, 2140 meters autostart, 12 starters) by Zenit Brick (6g Make It Happen-Exi Svard-Super Arnie) timed in 1.11.9 for Mika Forss and trainer Timo Nurmos. Serious Try (6g Crazed-Miss Volo-Yankee Glide) was second for Henrik Svensson, also the trainer. Thomas H. Hicks

YONKERS, NY - Taco Tuesday, a 4-year-old gelding by Cantab Hall, will make his first start out of Rob and Patti Harmon's stable in the 1 1/4-mile, $68,000 Open Handicap Trot at Yonkers Raceway July 30. The change comes after Rob Harmon received an unexpected call from the trotter's owner, Vince Laurenzo, after Taco Tuesday galloped most of the mile in the Hambletonian Maturity July 15. "I got a phone call on Sunday the day after he raced at The Meadowlands from Vince. He wanted to know if I would take him and start training him. I told him that would be great," Harmon explained. "I never met him before. I still haven't met him, only talked to him on the phone. He has some good horses. He wants to race at Yonkers, so that was probably the big key there." Before coming to Harmon's stable, Taco Tuesday won 10 of 42 races and banked $290,937. Laurenzo bought Taco Tuesday out of the Harrisburg sale last fall for $90,000 and the trotter has switched stables several times since. Now, Harmon is happy to have Taco Tuesday settling into his barn. "He's a nice horse. You wouldn't even know he's in the barn. Clean legged, doesn't do one thing wrong. That's a good horse," he said. For Harmon, the process of getting an established older horse in the stable is a multi-step one. He examines blood work, watches replays, and gets a feel for the horse. Mainly, he aims to make the transition as easy as possible or the horse and tries to keep them on the same routine. "The first thing I always do, I always pull their blood. I want to see what they are, especially when they're racing good, I like to maintain the blood to where they are. Then I watch a video to see how he is," Harmon said. "This horse is pretty good, just wears an open bridle and he's pretty simple. The good thing about that is, to me it's easy to follow what they've been doing." Harmon's stable is in the midst of a strong year. He has sent out 42 winners from 252 starts at Yonkers with another 57 placing. His horses have earned $929,367 at the Hilltop Oval this ' season. "We're doing good. Every winter I always do pretty decent. Usually after April or May I start shifting horses to Tioga because they either get tired or they run out of their classes, but knock on wood, horses have been holding on and we're trying to stay there and race more," he said. Taco Tuesday is a 12-1 morning line in his debut for Harmon after qualifying in 1:52.4 at The Meadowlands July 22. He posted a final quarter in :27.4 and finished fourth behind Crazy Wow, Tuonoblu Rex, and JL Cruze. Jim Morrill, Jr. drove in the gelding's first move for Harmon and the trainer was happy. "Jimmy said he was really manageable, just went around there and he trotted 1:52.4," Harmon said. "It just seems like he gets a little hot behind the gate, but that's up to the drivers. And a lot of those guys already know the horse." Taco Tuesday's trouble behind the gate will be his biggest hurdle when he starts from post six in the Open Trot this Sunday. Taco Tuesday's biggest asset is his early speed and a first-tier post position helps that, but getting away cleanly is just as important. "It looks like he's best when he goes toward the front, but it's tough with him. You have to baby him off the gate because you don't want him to run, try to keep him calm. But that first step off the gate is what we need to get in front of those good horses, too," Harmon reasoned. Jordan Stratton will drive Taco Tuesday this Sunday. It will be Stratton's first time sitting behind the gelding since they paired up to win a 1-mile, $40,000 Preferred Handicap at Yonkers April 15. After the early scratch of Springbank Sam, 10 horses will challenge Taco Tuesday, including 2-1 morning line favorite and last week's Open Handicap Trot winner Homicide Hunter. "There's horses that are nice in there. No one looks like a throw out. We just need a lot of luck in the mile-and-a-quarter race, that's all." Post time at Yonkers Sunday is 11:30 a.m. For entries for the card, click here. by Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

WInd Of The North (Mike Simons) leaves the rest in the dust as they capture the Open Trot ($12,000) at Tioga Downs on Saturday (July 22). Picture This (Charlie Norris) would charge to the front and take them to a first quarter in 28.4. Wind Of The North (Cantab Hall) would then move first over from fourth and blow right by to take over before the half. Owned by Darryl Bier and Joann Dombeck, while trained by Jeff Long, the 7 year old gelding would follow up with fractions of :57.2, 1:25.0, 1:53.1 and winning by three lengths in the end. Dragin The Wagin (Aaron Byron) would come late to finish second. Picture This would settle for third. Wind Of The North ($3.90) would win for the sixth time this season in 18 starts and for the 30th time in his career. Mike Simons would take win number 51 on the season. Jeff Long would earn his sixth training win on the season. The exacta (1-6) would pay $20.20. The large crowd was entertained after racing with a fantastic display off fireworks. Tioga Downs returns to racing Sunday afternoon (July 23) with a 12 race betting card and one non-betting Riders Under Saddle (RUS) race (following race one). Post Time is 1:00pm. Also on Sunday is the "Belly Busting Burger Battle" on the trackside apron from 1-4p.m. Tickets are $15 with children under 3 free. 1/2 of ticket proceeds will go to a selected charity. Includes all burger tasting, water and one voting slip per person. Live entertainment and cash prizes. This is weather permitting only. For more information go to John Horne for Tioga Downs.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Trainer Julie Miller wasn't worried. She had faith her husband would get Tuonoblu Rex clear for the stretch drive in the harness racing featured $20,000 preferred handicap trot at the Meadowlands Friday night. That faith was realized as driver Andy Miller and 'T Rex' swerved off the rail as the field straightened away in the stretch before uncorking an explosive :26.2 final quarter that resulted in a 1¼-length win. The final time of 1:51 lowered the 5-year-old son of Cantab Hall's lifetime mark by one and one-fifth seconds. Gural Hanover was second with Opulent Yankee third. Gural Hanover was sent to the lead and set solid fractions of :26.3, :56.1 and 1:24. JL Cruze, the 9-5 second choice, went first over from the three-eighths and made steady progress approaching the head of the stretch as Tuonoblu Rex sat trapped in the three hole along the rail. "I was actually happy to see him out there," said the winning trainer. "I know JL Cruze doesn't like to be on the outside." JL Cruze weakened for the stretch drive, leaving room for Tuonoblu Rex to showcase his explosive late burst. "I figured Andy would find a way," said Julie Miller. Despite an 18-day layoff, Tuonoblu Rex was super sharp. "He's been healthy but there aren't many opportunities for a horse like this to get raced," said Julie Miller. "He's staked to everything. The problem is, a lot of those races go by money won, so he gets knocked out of a lot of those." 'T Rex' paid $4.00 to win as the even-money choice and is now four-for-six this year and 10-for-20 overall, with lifetime earnings of $234,918 for owners Stable Why Not of Millstone Township, N.J. Tuonoblu Rex A LITTLE MORE: All-source wagering on the program totaled $2,040,352. ... Post time on Saturday has been moved up 45 minutes to 6:30 p.m. The card features the 2017 debut of Hambletonian favorite Walner as well as the elimination for the July 15 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. In addition, there are also two Graduate Series finals, with each sporting a purse of $240,000. Dave Little  

The ever-traveling CKG Billings Amateur Driving Series was on the move again on Wednesday night (June 5) where harness racing members of the mid-west region convened in greater Cleveland, Ohio for a trotting contest at Northfield Park. The well contested event turned out to be a barn-burner with three horses battling head-to-head down the stretch for supremacy and when the judges hung the official sign, Song In My Heart and driver "Tiny Tim," Miller emerged victorious by a neck, over Heza Rube and Bob "the Lumberman" Troyer in a 1:59.2 clocking. It was the second time this season that Tim Miller and the 6-year-old altered son of Cantab Hall combined for a victory. Their first triumph together was on May 24th also at Northfield Park when they vanquished an eight-horse field in a 2:01.1 clocking and strangely Heza Rube was second to the winner that night, too. Last night Song In My Heart was hustled away from the starting gate and fell into the two-hole behind Patricia "the Write Stuff" Miller who gunned Keep The Cash to the lead from the pole position. They raced one-two past the quarter in :29.4 and by the half in 1:00.2. As they approached the third stanza Troyer and Heza Rube charged at the leaders as the timer flashed 1:29.4. And when they rounded the final turn the real battle for paydirt ensued as Song In My Heart ,Heza Rube and Keep the Cash battled all the way to the wire. But the pace-setter emerged victorious over Heza Rube with Keep The Cash right there in the three-horse photo. Owned by Bert Hershberger and trained by J D Wengerd Song In My Heart was sent off sent off as the betting favorite and returned $4.20 for win. For "Tiny Tim" Miller it was his second seasonal winning drive in as many starts and now the Wilmot, Ohio resident has 41 career driving victories. by John Manzi for the Billings Series

Wind Of North (Jeff Long) breezes by in the stretch and holds on to win the $12,000 harness racing Open Trot at Tioga Downs Saturday night (June 24). Lucid Thoughts (Tom Jackson) would lead from just after the first quarter then all the way to the top of the stretch. Wind Of The North ($4.60) who is owned by Daryl Bier and Joann Dombeck while trained by Long would go three wide to charge to the front. The 7-year-old gelding by Cantab Hall would have to hold off the late charging Prairie Fortune (Jim Meittinis) in deep stretch. Wind Of The North found something extra to win in 1:54.2. On The Podium (Mike Merton) would finish third. Jeff Long would also win with Too Much Man (Deweycheatumnhowe). The 3-year-old gelding who is owned by Ed Reich and trainer Paul Long would have it a lot easier go gate-to-wire in 1:58.0. Too Much Man ($4.20) won for the second straight start. Joey Pro (Mickey Mc Nichol) came in second and Just Like Bud (Corey Braden) got third. .David Glasser and Celebrity Stimulus captures Billings Drivers Club ($6000) race on Saturday night at Tioga Downs. Celebrity Stimulus ($4.80) would charge right out of the gate and lead from the outset. The 7-year-old gelding by Cantab Hall who is owned by Glasser Racing LLC and trained by John Butenschoen put up the fractions of :28.2, :58.0, 1:27.1, 1:57.4. Sam's Honey be came up late to finish second. Jelectric (Bob Davis) was third. Tioga Downs returns to action Sunday afternoon (June 25) with a 12 race card starting at 1:00p.m. For more information go to   John Horne For Tioga Downs.

May 27, 2017 - What a beginning to the Elite Weekend! Huge crowd, fantastic weather, great harness racing…nothing could be better. Stefan Melander’s owned and trained Volstead (6m Cantab Hall-Madame Volo-Yankee Glide) took the Sweden Cup Final (Gr. II, UET Masters Series, 600,000SEK to winner, 1640 meters autostart, nine starters) in Europe’s fastest time of the year 1.09.3kr with Orjan Kihlstrom aboard. The winner traveled in the death seat, as he did winning elimination #3, and eased past chief rival and pacesetter Vasterbo Highflyer (9g Look de Star-Vasterbo Highclass-Pine Chip) and driver Johan Untersteiner nearing the line. The 3.6/1 favorite won his elim, the third, timed in 1.09.7kr ahead of Buzz Mearas, Gabriel Gelormini driving, and Trendy OK with Alesssando Gocciadoro up. Third in the final was Ringostarr Treb (7m Classic Photo-Farsalo Egral-Supergill) with Wim Paal up for trainer Holger Ehlert, and the next two were Spitcam Jubb and BBS Sugarlight. Ringostarr was the 3/1 winner of elim two clocked in 1.10.1kr, defeating aforementioned Spitcam Jubb (6h Campbell Hall-Lola Spit-Super Arnie) and Fire To The Rain (6g Yankee Glide-Adelaide Hall-Conway Hall). The elims were worth 100,000SEK to those winners. The other elim, the first, was taken by 12/1 Briedablicks Nubbe (5m Lindy Lane-Wildgirl Boshoeve-Starchip Entrprise), shown below, for driver /trainer Conrad Lugauer timed in 1.09.5kr, that time equaled the European season record when made. Vasterbo Highflyer and BBS Sugarlight were the next two home in that elim. Volstead Undercard action included a victory by the Tom Dillon USA bred Seaside Illusion (4f Muscle Hill-Seaside-Yankee Glide) in a conditioned event for four year-old mares, with 100,000SEK to the winner of the 2140 meter autostart event. She was timed in 1.11.9kr for driver Erik Adielsson and trainer Frode Hamre. Gisela de Veluwe and Tour Knight were next.Seaside Illusion Mares also battled in the Ladt Snarts (200,000SEK to the winner, 140 meters autostart) and the quick 1.10.3kr timed winner was 7.7/1 Shadow Gar (6f Pine Chip-Lady Killer Gar-Varenne) handled by Pietro “Pippo” Gubellini for trainer Erik Bondo and Allev. Garigliano. She made a huge three wide sweep in the final bend and zoomed away to an easy win over Galactica and the tiring Wild Honey. Shadow Gar and Gubellini Thomas H. Hicks    

Fine Tuned Lady was "a model of consistency" last year. Harness racing trainer John Butenschoen is hoping for more of the same this season. Butenschoen sends Fine Tuned Lady, a multiple stakes-winner last year, to Friday's Currier & Ives for 3-year-old female trotters at The Meadows. The event attracted 21 horses, which were divided into three $24,000 divisions. Fine Tuned Lady is the 7-5 morning line favorite in the first division. Sianna Hanover is the 2-1 choice in the second division and Treviso is the 7-5 pick in the third. Last year Fine Tuned Lady won six times and finished second on five occasions in 12 starts. Her victories included the Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes, Matron Stakes, and Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship. She earned $438,340 for owners Bill Wiswell and M And L of Delaware. Fine Tuned Lady began this year by winning a division of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes on May 13 at The Meadows. "You always hold your breath when they're first coming back, but she did what she was supposed to do," Butenschoen said about Fine Tuned Lady's seasonal debut. "I was real pleased and I know that (driver Corey Callahan) was happy with how she raced. She's a nice filly. We'll see how she comes back this year; we'll see if she's improved any. I'm sure there are other ones out there that have improved, or that we didn't hear of, that will pop up. We'll find out. "She had a great year (in 2016). She was just a model of consistency. She did everything you would have hoped for. If she would have earned half the money we would have been tickled to death. As it was, she got lucky in a few races where some favorites or co-favorites made breaks and she was able to take advantage and she put up a good chunk of change on her card." Fine Tuned Lady's only off-the-board finish came in a division of the International Stallion Stakes at Lexington's Red Mile, where she was fourth but beaten by only 1-3/4 lengths. "I don't know if she was getting tired at that time of year already, but she wasn't quite as sharp, or didn't stack up as well as those other ones on the bigger track," Butenschoen said. "She's a real good-gaited filly, a real handy filly, and I think she's going to be a lot more suited to the smaller tracks. But it'll be interesting to see what she can do against them with a fresh set of legs under her." Fine Tuned Lady is a daughter of stallion Cantab Hall out of the stakes-winning mare Poster Princess and her second dam is Dan Patch Award-winner Me Maggie. Fine Tuned Lady was purchased for $27,000 at the 2015 Standardbred Horse Sale. Interestingly, her connections had their eyes on a filly that sold earlier in the auction, but were unsuccessful in acquiring her. If they had, it is unlikely they would have bid on Fine Tuned Lady. "It comes down to luck at the sales," Butenschoen said. "You do your homework and hopefully things fall into place. That's kind of the fun of the game I guess." Fine Tuned Lady is eligible to the Hambletonian Oaks in August at the Meadowlands. Other Oaks eligible horses in the Currier & Ives divisions are Sparkle Plenty, Monee Bank, Sheez On A Cruze, Caviart Wonder, Cool Cates, Sianna Hanover, Dangle Then Deke, Amuse's, Broadway Idole, Treviso, Pennys N Dimes, and Temple Ruins. In addition, Fine Tuned Lady is eligible to the Breeders Crown in late October at Hoosier Park. "We'll keep our fingers crossed," Butenschoen said. "It's a long time between now and the end of October. We'll see if we can do things right." Fine Tuned Lady is not the only highly regarded trotter trained by Butenschoen for Wiswell and M And L of Delaware. Bill's Man, a 3-year-old colt, was last year's third-fastest 2-year-old trotter, posting a mark of 1:52.3, and is eligible to the Hambletonian among other top stakes. Bill's Man is expected to compete in Monday's first round of the New York Sire Stakes at Vernon Downs. He has a win and a second in two starts this season. "They've got a nice pair there," Butenschoen said about his owners' trotters. "He's a very fast horse. He was just a big, long, leggy thing as a 2-year-old and a little physically and mentally immature. He had a nice winter in Florida and, knock on wood, so far this year is putting everything down the way he's supposed to and acting right." For Friday's complete Meadows card, click here. First race post time is 5 p.m. and the first Currier & Ives division is race four. Ken Weingartner

May 20, 2017 - Saturday’s Kincsem Park harness racing action featured the Kali DIJ (purse 600,000Huf, 1800 meters autostart) with the 1.17.7kr timed score going to Spartakus Ans (6g Cantab Hall-Valganna OK) reined by Csaba Lakatos for Antioch Arani SRO and trainer Laszlo Toth. Sanger MS was second for Balasz Juhasz with third to Speedy Boy and pilot Veljko Mazsity. Winning Spartakus Ans is shown below. On the undercard was the Fokos DIJ (purse 400,000Hufm 1800 meters autostart) with 2.4/1 Utodlo (4m Maximus Lindy-Joss) winning for Balazs Juhasz, also trainer, clocked in 1.17.2kr. Urilary R with Veljko Maszity up was second ahead of Walking John M and driver Sandor Kolozsi. Thomas H Hicks

HARRINGTON, Del. - Daryl Bier and Joann Dombeck's Wind Of The North ($3.40, Victor Kirby) was a 1:54.4 harness racing winner in the $15,000 Open Trot Wednesday at Harrington Raceway. It was the 26th career win for the 7-year-old Cantab Hall gelding and trainer Jenny Bier. Tough Mac, the 3-1 third betting choice among the six-horse field, left the gate from post position five and marched to the early lead in an opening quarter mile in 27.1 seconds. The 8-year-old pacesetter reached the half-mile in 56.2 and three-quarters in 1:25.2 while Wind of The North maneuvered three-wide and brushed clear of the field with ease for a powerful score. Maestro Blue Chip rallied for second while I Like My Boss was third. The win pushed Wind Of The North over $756,000 in career earnings. In the second race of 10 on the program, William Moffett's Roman ($3.60, Jim Morand) registered his first career win in his 26th start in 1:57. The 3-year-old Yankee Cruiser gelding had previously been second nine times in his career. Ross Wolfenden had three wins. Matthew Sparacino

May 6, 2017 - Spartakus Ans (6g Cantab Hall-Valganna OK-Lemon Dra) took the first heat of the prestigious Dr, Tomas Borostyankoy Memorial (total purse 1.8 million Huf, 1960 meters distance handicap). Timed in 1.17.5kr the winner overcame a 20 meter handicap and scored for harness racing driver Csaba Lakatos and trainer Laszlo Toth. Henrik Ibsen AT (5m Worship-Her Own Child-Imposant Sund) was a non-threatening second for trainer/driver Tibor Hajnal. Third was 20 meter penalized Donato Luca (8m Donerail-High Wheels-Tagliabue) reined by Vereb Zjolt and also trained by the aforementioned Toth. As later described, Spartakus Ans took the second heat easily and therefore the race victory. The weekly open class event at Kincsem Park was the Omek DIJ (purse 600,000, 1900 meters autostart) and the front stepping victory went to Oldtimer Diamant (7g Arc de Triomphe-Primadonnas Lady-Titan Way) teamed by Emil Csordas, also the trainer. Sultana Jet (6f Igor Font-Art Deco-Diamond Way) was a quarter-length beaten second after traveling throughout in the death seat. Gyorgy Horvath drove Sultana Jet for trainer Imre Fazekas. Third went to Rafael Bit (7g Prime Prospect-Becky Ami-Keyser Lobell) reined by Vereb  Zsolt for trainer Laszlo Toth.. The Legor Matucza Memorial (purse 1mm Huf, 1800 meters autostart) went to invader Sammi Ms (6g Chirone Dei-Sparkle N Shine-SJs Photo) reined by Mitja Slavic for trainer Marko Slavic of SLO. Time was not reported. Milliondollar Lux (11m Ganymede-Dadaumpa Jet-Supergill) held on for second after setting the pace, Emil Csordas the driver/trainer. Third was Pierj del Bar (8f Abano As-Exile Bar-Muscles Yankee) for Serbia’s owner/trainer/driver Zoltan Ozvar. Sammi Ms also won the featured event last Saturday at Kincsem Park, Heat II and the finale of the Dr. Tamas Borostyankoy Memorial (total purse 1.8mm Huf, 1960 meters distance handicap) went to the Heat I winner and 20 meter penalized Spartakus Ans (6g Cantab Hall-Volganna OK-Lemon Dra) timed in 1.17.3kr. Csaba Lakatos reined the Laszlo Toth trainee. 40 meter handicapped Under Blue (9m Elvis de Rossignol-Jargala-Buvetier d’Aunou) was second for driver Imre Dome and owner/trainer Josef Rutkai. Third went to Henrik Ibsen AT (5m Worship-Her Own Child-Imposant Sund) reined by trainer Tibor Hajnal,  this one second in the first heat. The final major race at Kincsem Park this day was the Laszlo Farge Memorial (purse 1.8mm Huf, 1960 meters distance handicap, three year-olds), and Veronica Fling (3f Racino-Ciccioline Fling-Supergill) scored in 1.21.5kr for driver/trainer Veljko Mazsity and Hico, the owner. Vakarcs RB (3m Racino-Victory Va Bene-Diablo Va Bene) took second for driver Mitja Slavic and trainer Balazs Juhasz with a game effort. Third was the 20 meter handicapped Villeneuve (4m Pilgrims Taj-Brisco Emma-Brisco Robertto) for trainer/driver Laszlo Kolozsi. The weekend at Kincsem Park featured racing (Friday-Sunday) and a very well attended Food Truck Classic. Attendance was excellent for this first such event of the season.  Thomas H. Hicks

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (April 21, 2017) - Tuonoblu Rex, the American-sired, Italian-bred, and Dutch-trained son of Cantab Hall, entered Friday's $20,000 Preferred Trot at the Meadowlands with a healthy amount of hype following an eye-catching qualifying win in his first harness racing appearance on Big M soil two weeks ago. After grinding past millionaire Crazy Wow with a :27 second final quarter to win in 1:52.1 in his North American parimutuel debut, the bandwagon might need some more seats. "T-Rex" sat third as Crazy Wow showed the field through fractions of :27.4, :56.2 and 1:24.4 for three-quarters while Opulent Yankee chased from the pocket. Around the final turn, Andy Miller launched the 5-year-old, who earned nearly $200,000 during his 14-race European career, first-over after the 3-5 favorite Crazy Wow. The two trotters battled down the stretch, but "T-Rex" had enough late to win as the 2-1 second choice. "We were very pleased with him," said trainer Julie Miller. "He definitely met our expectations tonight. Andy said he was perfect to drive. He has trained down great since arriving in the U.S." Tuonoblu Rex is owned by Cees J. Faber's Stable Why Not. He is eligible to the Arthur J. Cutler Memorial at the Meadowlands on May 6 as well as the Cashman Memorial and TVG Free For All Series. Tuonoblu Rex In the $18,000 pacing mare feature, Breeders Crown champion Call Me Queen Be settled for second in her 4-year-old debut behind the sharp Inittowinafortune. The 3-5 favorite Penpal disappointed with a late-closing, but non-threatening third place finish. Hall of Famer John Campbell won three races for the second straight Friday night. Corey Callahan also won three. Total handle was $2,502,644 for the 11-race card. Racing resumes Saturday. Post time is 7:15 p.m. For more information, visit Justin Horowitz

WILKES-BARRE PA - The Cantab Hall filly Hot Mess Hanover looked anything but a mess upon coming in to The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono Tuesday night, taking the fastest of the three $15,000 divisions of the first leg of the Bobby Weiss Series for harness racing trotting distaffs in 1:56.3.   Andrew McCarthy retucked his charge in the pocket around a gapper in the third quarter, then set her sights on pacesetting The Muscle Touch, and gradually Hot Mess Hanover reeled in the leader in the lane, along by a neck while reducing her mark by almost three seconds for trainer Joe Pavia Jr. and the partnership of the Edmund Smith Estate, David Smith, and James and Daniel Giannuzzi.   The Kadabra mare Sunrise Avenue was just a tick behind the clocking of Hot Mess Hanover in taking another Weiss cut. Eric Carlson moved the winner, now over $50,000 in career earnings, to the lead past the quarter, then drew off in the stretch to have a 3½ length margin at the finish for trainer Gilbert Garcia-Herrera and J M F Racing LLC.   In the other Weiss cut, Abbie's Celticlass brushed to the lead in front of the stands, then held off a late bid from Winning Princess to take a half-length decision in 1:58. Jim Morrill Jr. handled sulky duties for trainer Ken Hess Jr. and Stop The Jade Farm LLC.   On Sunday night, it was driver Matt Kakaley, starting a six-winner night, who guided home longshot Threeupthreedown at a $119.20 mutuel; tonight it was the meet's leading driver, Simon Allard, who broke a few tote board bulbs when he and Explosive Matter passed horse after horse in the latter part of the race and just got a nose up on the wire, returning $117.20 to his scattered backers. Allard also handled the feature pace winner, the Badlands Hanover mare Live Odds, who had an 8-length lead at the stretch call of the $16,000 contest, then coasted home yet still lowered her lifetime mark over two seconds to 1:51.3 for trainer Ty Pena and owner Kristin Taft.   The next racing card at Pocono is on Saturday (April 8), and that day's action will mark the establishment of the track's Saturday through Tuesday basic seasonal schedule, as Monday racing rejoins the lineup on the 10th.   PHHA / Pocono  

Pompano Beach, FL...Monday, April 3, 2017...Boli, driven by Wally Hennessey, stalked the pacesetting Tater Twister, handled by Mike Simons, through fractions of :28, :56.2 and 1:24.4 and edged by that one late to score a half-length harness racing victory in Pompano Park's $10,000 Open Handicap Trot on Monday night, tripping the timer in 1:54.2, a new lifetime mark. Sooo Handsome, with Rick Plano in the sulky, finished third, 3½ lengths away while Sailer Eddie finished fourth. Dog Gone Lucky, sluggish leaving the gate from the rail, picked up the nickel in the sextet after Prairie Fortune made a miscue on the backside. The five year-old altered son of Kadabra, trained by Dan Hennessey for owners Paul and Patricia O'Neil, earned his second win of the year in five starts and pushed his lifetime bounty over the $150,000 plateau-now $151,674-with his 17th career win in 53 starts. After the race, driver Wally Hennessey related, "He got a very good journey tonight. Mike's trotter (Tater Twister) was a tough opponent and he did most of the work cutting the fractions and my horse just got the better trip here. "Boli is a pretty amazing horse who gives all he's got every start. He's very versatile and that's a great trait in a racehorse because it gives you more options to win." As the 8 to 5 favorite, Boli returned $5.40 to win. Also on Monday night, three divisions of the C.K.G. Billings Amateur Driving Challenge were contested, honoring the memory of the noted industrialist and horseman and the owner of the sport's first 2:00 trotter, Lou Dillon, who accomplished that feat in 1903. A Crown For Lindy, driven by Dein Spriggs won the opener, Garlandsandpearls, also teaming up with Spriggs, took round two and Best Dream Seeker, with Joe Pennacchio in the bike won the finale. Spriggs kicked off the festivities with a handy win back of his own A Crown For Lindy, the 11 year-old son of Cantab Hall. Trained by Allen Saul, the classy gelding won for the 54th time in a career stretching 206 starts, stopping the tele-timer in 1:58.1. New Scent, with Joe Faraldo in the sulky, finished second while Flaming Yankee finished third for "Touchdown" Teddy Bowman after taking command early and slicing through panels of :28.2, :58.1 and 1:28 before being confronted around the final turn and succumbing to the winner. Chip Chip Page (Tony Dinges) finished fourth while Frenchmen (Billy Muggleston) picked up the minor award. A Crown For Lindy now has lifetime earnings of $416,834 and enriched his multitude of followers with a $3.00 win payoff as the 1 to 2 favorite. Spriggs doubled his pleasure with Garlandsandpearls, which he also owns, by guiding that six year-old son of Futile Qwest to a gate-to-wire win in 1:57.3, after putting up all the numbers--:28.2, :58.3 and 1:27.4. Garlandsandpearls stretched his lead to 3½ lengths on the line with Irish Scotch (Shane Arsenault) second after a first over backside binge from fifth. JLS Too Hot Taj (Steve Oldford) finished third while Mad Cow Lisa (Hannah Miller) survived a very difficult journey from the outside post nine to finish a very respectable fourth. B Cor Thomas (Billy Muggleston) picked up the final award in the field of nine. Garlandsandpearls won for the fifth time this semester and his 5-2-3 scorecard in 13 starts now shows earnings of $16,005. Also trained by Alan Saul, Garlandsandpearls returned $6.60 as the second choice in the wagering. The driving double for Spriggs sent his career total to 431 wins. The final Billings event-a rare pace-went to Best Dream Seeker for driver Joe Pennacchio. Owned and trained by Stanley Whittemore, this 11 year-old gelded son of Cambest won for the 30th time in a career encompassing 297 starts. Best Dream Seeker was third in the early stages of his mile as A Weekend (Joe Faraldo) cut panels of :27.2, :58 and 1:26.1 as Dr. Flamingo (Hannah Miller) sat in the garden spot through those fractions. Around the final turn. Pennacchio tilted his charge to the outside and began gnawing away at the leader, gaining the lead at mid-stretch and drawing clear late. Dr. Flamingo edged by A Weekend to be second. Hillcrest Bigdaddy (Peter Gerry) finished fourth while P L Dangerous (Bob Davis) finished fifth. For Best Dream Seeker, whose mark is 1:51.4 taken back in 2008 at Lexington's Red Mile, the win pushed his career bounty to $412,621. As the 4 to 5 tote-board favorite, Best Dream Seeker paid $3.80 to win. While the win was number 158 in Pennacchio's amateur driving career, it was only win number six back of a pacer, as the vast majority of his drives are with trotters. Racing continues on Tuesday night with a $10,000 guaranteed pool for the Pick-4, contested on races 6 through 9, as part of the USTA Strategic Wagering program. Post time is 7:20 p.m. Reported by John Berry for Pompano Park  

April 1, 2017 - Harness racing driver Orjan Kihlstrom piloted 1.18/1 odds Delicious U.S. to the front in front of stands on the first lap and they coasted to a two length score in the Solvalla AM Print-Pixies (purse 200,000SEK to the winner, total purse 409,500SEK, 1640 meters autostart). The eight year old daughter of Cantab Hall-Ipsara LB-Lemon Dra recorded her second 2017 win in as many starts and now has 26 career wins in 51 outings for 6,346,571SEK earned. Daniel Reden trains the Stall Zet owned mare that was bred in the USA by Lindy Farms. Windy Ways (7f Conway Hall-Southwind Flanders-Lindy Lane) was second for Johnny Takter and trainer Reden at 9.39/1. Pasithea Face (5f Muscle Hill-Jovelinotte-Passionnant) was third for Adrian Kolgjini at 5.06/1. Fractions were well rated (1.10.1kr at the first 500; 1.12.4kr at the first 1000 leading to a final time of  Thomas H. Hicks

Pompano Beach, FL...March 27, 2017...Sailer Eddie, driven by harness racing owner-trainer Kevin Wallis, barely held off the late charging Sooo Handsome, with Rick Plano in the bike, to escape with a photo finish victory in Pompano Park's $12,000 Open Handicap Trot on Monday night (March 27). The official margin was a "nose" at the conclusion of the 1:54 journey with Boli and driver Wally Hennessey teaming up for show honors, 2¾ lengths away. Celebrity Maserati, trotting an even mile throughout, finished fourth while Explosive Muscles picked up the nickel in a field scratched down to six. At the outset, Sailer Eddie, leaving from Pompano Park's coveted post five, left with his usual alacrity and zipped into an early lead as Sooo Handsome, starting from post four, also showed some speed off the gate and settled in the garden spot. Explosive Muscles, Celebrity Maserati, Boli and Winding Hill completed the order through an opening quarter in :27.3 with positions unchanged past the half in :56.2 and three quarters in 1:25. Turning for home, Sailer Eddie cut the corner trying to protect his lead while Sooo Handsome left the coziness of the pocket and began gnawing away. The wire came just in time for Sailer Eddie and a stride too late for Sooo Handsome as the photo finish camera separated the pair by a whisker. After the race, driver Kevin Wallis said, "What helped tonight was the scratch that put us in the five post, a spot where it's beneficial to leave. "My horse likes to race in front. Just about all of the wins I have had with him have been on the front end and, when he's on, he can be pretty tough. "This is the fastest he's gone in quite some time and I am proud of his performance tonight." In garnering his fourth win of the year in eight starts, this seven year-old gelded son of Cantab Hall pushed his seasonal earnings to $20,910 and $360,351 lifetime. As the 2 to 1 third choice, Sailer Eddie paid $6.40 to win. The $10,000 Open 2 Trot went to Noble Anthony, driven by Mike Simons, by a nose over the feisty long-shot Commentary (John MacDonald) in 1:55.4. Massive Lightning (Mickey McNichol) finished a fast closing third, less than a length away, while Kabu and Pocket Trip picked up the final awards in the octet. The winner, a seven year-old gelded son of Andover Hall, survived a first over trip the entire last lap to get up in the last stride over the pace-setting Commentary, who had carved well rated fractions of :28.2, :58 and 1:26.3 before succumbing in the last stride. Noble Anthony is also trained by Simons and co-owns with Albert Abdala III. The win was the fourth of the year for Noble Anthony to push his 2017 bankroll to $19,525 and $120,255 lifetime. As the even money favorite on the tote-board, Noble Anthony paid $4.20 to win. In other Monday night action, the Florida Amateur Driving Club went to the starting gate in two divisions with The Budster and JLS Too Hot Taj, both owned by Oldford Racing and driven by Steve Oldford, winning their respective events. The Budster, a rugged 12 year-old altered son of Broadway Hall, took advantage of an early miscue by the 2 to 5 favorite, A Crown For Lindy, and went on to score a near gate-to-wire win in 1:58.4. The winner scored a 2¼ length victory over Chip Chip Page (Tony Dinges) with Flaming Yankee ("Touchdown" Teddy Bowman) another half-length back in third. Tymal Recap finished fourth while Frenchman finished fifth. The Budster won for the 45th time in his career stretching 229 starts, vaulting his career bankroll to $651,476. As second choice, The Budster paid $8.80 to win. JLS Too Hot Taj, took command after a brief tussle with Garlandsandpearls (Dein Spriggs) to score a gritty win in a career best 1:56.2--that winning margin a head with B Cor Thomas (Billy Muggleston) third, just a half-length away. This five year-old daughter of Pilgrims Taj won for the fourth time this semester in 11 starts, pushing her bounty to $13,271. Career-wise, this Mike Deters trainee has $63,798 on her card with 10 wins. As the slight even-money favorite on the tote-board, JLS Too Hot Taj paid $4.20 to win. The Amateur Club pushed their donations well over the $180,000 plateau with a sizable contribution to Equine Assisted Therapies, an organization that specializes in Therapeutic Riding, Hippothearpy, Equine Facilitated Learning and Equine Psychotherapy, including a Wounded Warrior program. Molly Murphy, Executive Director of the Organization, was on hand in the winner's circle to accept the donation. Racing continues on Tuesday night with mares in the spotlight in the $8,500 Open Trot. This classy sextet features McKenzie's Star, Serendipitious, Bad Angel, Diamond Dagger, Celebrity Artemis and She's All In, the latter seeking a repeat victory. The track will also offer a $10,000 guaranteed pool on the Pick-4, conducted on races 6 through 9, as well as a carryover of $33,732.89 on the Super Hi-5 finale. That entire Super Hi-5 jackpot can only be claimed when there is only one ticket sold on the winning combination. Multiple winners share 50% of that night's pool with the balance added to the existing carryover. Post time is 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park

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