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Columbus, OH --- Homicide Hunter and driver Aaron Merriman moved to the lead following the halfway point of Saturday’s (June 9) Charlie Hill Memorial and never looked back, winning the $200,000 event for older trotters by 4-1/2 lengths over In Secret in 1:50.3 on a track labeled good at Eldorado Scioto Downs. Charmed Life finished third. Defending champion Crazy Wow and two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Marion Marauder were scratched sick, reducing the field to seven horses. Race favorite Will Take Charge went off stride at the start and finished sixth.The winning time equaled the world record for an older gelding trotter on a five-eighths-mile track and was a stakes and track record. I Know My Chip took the early lead in a :26.3 opening quarter-mile before seeing Smalltownthrowdown get the top spot prior to the half-mile point. Driver Sam Widger moved I Know My Chip back to the lead at the half, reached in :54.2, but faced pressure from Homicide Hunter, who was in front by the time he reached three-quarters in 1:22. Homicide Hunter is a 6-year-old gelding by Mr Cantab out of Evening Prayer. He is owned by Crawford Farms Racing of New York and trained by Chris Oakes. The horse was bred by Patrick Graham. For the year, Homicide Hunter has won two of three races and earned $116,500. For his career, he has won 32 of 65 starts and banked $1.22 million. The Charlie Hill Memorial honors Hall of Famer Charles Hill, who was the founder and former president and chairman of the board of Scioto Downs. Homicide Hunter went off at odds of 3-1 and paid $8.60 to win. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

CHESTER PA - The mare Turn The Paige and driver Jackie Ingrassia missed the world record for a 5/8-mile trot over a 5/8-mile track by 2/5 of a second while taking a $12,500 event at Harrah's Philadelphia Saturday afternoon in 1:09.2 - but with the energy the winner showed, the record could have been hers with a better trip. Actually, it's hard to imagine a worse trip for the Cantab Hall mare, who left from post five - three-wide most of the quickly-arriving first turn in the once-around race, and then two-wide raw the duration against pacesetting favorite Hemi Seelster, with fractions of 27.1 and 55.2. In the stretch it was Turn The Paige and "Lady J" who continued to power to the wire, winning by 2 3/4 lengths over a late-charging Patton, with Hemi Seelster settling for show. Husband-trainer Frank Ingrassia conditions the winner for his wife-owner-driver, and they saw their mare reach earnings of $202,545 with the sprint triumph. Top purse event on the day at Harrah's was a $17,000 conditioned pace, won in impressive fashion by the Shanghai Phil gelding Makasi while lowering his lifetime mark by almost two seconds to 1:50.2. Driver/trainer Pat Lachance worked out a fine second-over trip with the winner of $142,409, sent up three-wide on the far turn, and the winner responded with a thumping last quarter of 27.2 to win by 3 1/4 lengths for Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

WILKES-BARRE PA - Five divisions of the second preliminary round of the Pennsylvania Stallion Series for three-year-old colt trotters went gateward Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, and the current parity in the group was reflected by the fact that three divisions went in 1:55 and the other two in 1:55.1. Two of the 1:55 winners were altered sons of Explosive Matter, and that pair also became the only members of the group to win in both Stallion Series prelims. The first to earn this distinction was Lindy's Big Bang, who made every pole a winning one while coming home in 28.1 to take a new speed badge for trainer Nifty Norman and driver David Miller, the latter co-owner with Melvin Hartman and David McDuffee. With all the great stakes racing in Pennsylvania on Sunday between Harrah's and Pocono, the other double StS winner, Rich And Miserable, was the only visitor to either Victory Lane to come from behind cover and go on to win. Driver Tyler Buter tipped the winner wide from second-over headstretch and handled him confidently through the lane in lowering his mark for trainer Todd Buter and owners Gene Oldford Farms LLC, Lynette Buter, and William and Carol Fuhs. Sire Cantab Hall also saw two of his sons trot to victory in the Stallion Series action. First up was For A Dreamer, who gained command in front of the stands and went on to be the other 1:55 winner, a time which equaled his mark taken in a qualifier. Corey Callahan handled the sulky assignment for trainer Bob Stewart and the partnership of Bluestone Farms, S. Steven Arak, Brianna Fenn, and Norman Corn. Cantab Hall is also the sire of the gelding Mississippi Storm, who went coast-to-coast in taking his division in 1:55.1, only a tick off his career fastest. Mississippi Storm tacked on a 28 kicker for driver Jim Morrill Jr. to raise his stats to wins in half of his dozen lifetime starts for trainer Tom Fanning and owner Joseph Smith. The other 1:55.1 winner was the Muscle Hill gelding Spartan, who made an early move to control the throttle and went on to post his second straight victory and lower his mark. Andrew McCarthy was in the sulky for trainer Anette Lorentzon, who co-owns the sophomore with ACL Stuteri AB. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE PA - If you're looking to evaluate the quality of the three-year-old trotting colts competing in three divisions of the $171,290 second preliminary of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono Saturday night, you can look at what the timer showed at the end of the first division - 1:51.4, the fastest trotting mile of the year in North America on a 5/8-mile track, posted by the Andover Hall colt Evaluate to lower his mark by over three seconds. Driver Corey Callahan kept Evaluate in third behind a contested pace (27.3, 55.4), then moved him uncovered 5/8 to challenge favored Captain Morgan, who had finished ahead of Evaluate in the first round of the Sire Stakes. But Evaluate proved strong in the stretch despite the raw overland journey, going by by 1 /4 lengths as he ran his lifetime record to 6-3-3-0 for trainer Marcus Melander and Stall TZ Inc. Callahan won a second Sire Stakes division as Whats The Word ran his record to 3-for-3 with trotting hopples and 2-for-2 in 2018 Sire Stakes races while recording a personal best of 1:53.2. The Cantab Hall gelding brushed to command in front of the stands, then came home in 56.1-27.4 to be well clear at the wire for trainer Janice Connor, also co-owner with the Arden Homestead Stable. The third winner in Sires competition is probably the best-known of the three, the Muscle Hill colt and 2017 Peter Haughton winner You Know You Do, who also posted a lifetime record of 1:53.2. The $350,000 yearling, making his seasonal debut after earning almost $375G at two, brushed to the lead under the wire the first time for driver Yannick Gingras, then stepped home in 56.2 on his own, hinting at being on the edge of another fine season for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Howard Taylor, the Order By Stable, Bud Hatfield, and Mkatz Alibfeld Sgoldband. In the featured pace for older horses, worth $21,500, Lawrencetown Beach was involved in a searing half, yet still had enough to rally out of the pocket to nose out closing Maxdaddy Blue Chip in 1:49 - a new mark which also equals the fastest mile of the year in North America on a 5/8-mile track (a great night for the speedy Pocono surface). After leaving in a 26.2 quarter then pushing a foe to a 53.2 half, the Somebeachsomewhere gelding sat patiently in the pocket past the 1:20.4 ¾ pole, came out at headstretch and paced to the lead, then just photoed the charging Maxdaddy Blue Chip for driver Matt Kakaley, trainer Ron Burke, and the partnership of Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, M1 Stable LLC, and Phil Collura. And it wouldn't be Saturday night without a mention of Walks Of Life, who reclaimed the clear title as winningest harness horse in North America this year with his 13th triumph of 2018 (coming clear of the remarkable 14YO mare Quicksilvercandy A, who had tied him with her twelfth win on the year Wednesday at Buffalo). The fast and game Walks Of Life, an altered son of Western Ideal, took a new mark of 1:50.4 as he ran his 2018 scorecard to 19-13-5-1-$79,222, and changed hands for the tenth straight start via claim. Driver George Napolitano Jr. (a six-time winner on the night) and trainer Hunter Oakes, the hottest team at Pocono, along with owner Northfork Racing Stable, were the winning connections behind the durable sidewheeler Saturday - in his next start, he'll have his third segment with Team Allard during this session of "roller-coaster claimer." From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE PA - Three-year-old trotting filly. 2018 debut. Trained by Jimmy Takter. Dominant. But this one isn't named Manchego - that was last night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, in the Sire Stakes. On Tuesday the filly with that description was Bella Glos, a daughter of Cantab Hall, whom Takter guided to a new mark of 1:54.2 in her seasonal bow in one of six $20,000 divisions of the second preliminary leg of the Pennsylvania Stallion Series for her division. Takter tucked early, then made the start of the winning move mid-backstretch, brushing right to the lead past the ¾ and then storming home in 27.4 to be 9¾ lengths clear at the wire. Bella Glos looks like a much-improved filly from two to three for Takter and Black Horse Racing. Tim Tetrick had a driving double in the Stallion Series, with the faster winner Muscle Playmate, who went coast-to-coast in her division, winning by 2 ¾ lengths while posting a personal best of 1:56.1. Marcus Melander handling the training duties for the daughter of Muscle Hill for Our Horse Cents Stable. Tetrick also won with the Explosive Matter filly Pembroke Mystery, who grinded to a half-length success while taking a new speed badge of 1:56.4 for trainer Randy Bendis and owner William Varney. The only winning favorite in the sextet of races was the Donato Hanover miss Follow Streak, who now has a winning streak of two after ruling her group by 7¾ lengths in a personal best 1:55.1. Follow Streak, who won her Sire Stakes consolation in 2017, was driven by Andy Miller and is trained by Julie Miller for the Andy Miller Stable Inc. and Lawrence Dumain. In the closest StS finish, Perfect Image generated a second siring credit for Muscle Hill when she held off the late charge of Century Express by a head in a new mark of 1:56. Charlie Norris handled sulky duties for trainer Doug Snyder and owner Frank Poerio. In the other Stallion Series division, the Muscle Massive miss Hey Judy Judy rushed to command down the back and kept a 2¾ length margin to the wire, her 1:57.1 clocking tying the mark she took in a qualifier at two, with Marcus Miller driving for father/trainer Erv Miller and Paymaq Racing. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

The Living Horse Hall of Fame nominating committee of the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame has announced the results of recent balloting to determine the 2018 inductees into the Harness Racing Living Horse Hall of Fame. Annual members voted for the two horses they felt best exemplified greatness. Their choices are stallions Cantab Hall and Western Ideal. The other nominees were Chapter Seven, Mister Big and Presidential Ball. Cantab Hall and Western Ideal will be inducted on Hall of Fame Day, Sunday, July 1st, 2018. The ceremonies honoring these extraordinary Standardbred horses will take place during the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame's annual dinner. For information on the Hall of Fame weekend and other festivities surrounding this important occasion visit www.harnessmuseum.com from April 2018 onward or call or write the Museum at 240 Main Street, Goshen, NY 10924. Phone: 845-294-6330. Standardbreds are only eligible for nomination to harness racing's highest accolade if they comply with the following strict criteria: They must be retired from racing for five years and had a drug-free career. In addition, racehorses must have won 75% of their lifetime starts, or gone undefeated in a single season campaign of 12 or more races, or been the winner of $3 million lifetime or named Harness Horse of the Year (US and/or Canada). Stallions must rank among the 10 all-time leading money-winning sires at their gait or have sired at least 100 $200,000 winners or been a leading money-winning sire at his gait in three or more seasons. Broodmares are no longer automatically elected. CANTAB HALL (Nominated as Stallion) 3,1:54 ($1,442,303) Bay Horse, 2001 (Self Possessed - Canland Hall - Garland Lobell) As a two-year-old in 2003, Cantab Hall won all 10 of his starts, earning $461,337, and was voted Dan Patch Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year and Trotter of the Year. Major victories included the Breeders Crown, American-National, International Stallion Stakes and the Bluegrass. In his sophomore season, Cantab Hall finished on the board in 11 of 13 starts while earning $980,966. His major victory came in his second American-National win. As a stallion, Cantab Hall was the leading sire at his gait for 3 consecutive years (2012-2014), as well as in 2016 and 2017. He has sired winners of over $73 million to date, including 8 millionaires, with 204 $100,000 winners and 138 in 1:55. His most successful offspring include 2013 Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old and 2014 Dan Patch Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year, world champion Father Patrick 3,1:50.2f ($2,558,133), winner of the 2013 Breeders Crown, Wellwood Memorial and Peter Haughton Memorial, and the 2014 Canadian Trotting Classic, Breeders Crown, Beal Memorial, Zweig Memorial and Stanley Dancer Memorial; world champion Wild Honey 3,1:50.4 ($1,589,235), winner of the 2015 Breeders Crown, Hambletonian Oaks, PA Sire Stakes Final and Kentucky Filly Futurity; and world champion Explosive Matter 3,1:52.3 ($1,510,542), winner of the 2008 Matron Stakes and the 2009 Colonial and Bluegrass. As a broodmare sire, Cantab Hall has sired the dams of winners of over $15 million to date, with two millionaires, Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year and world champion, Southwind Frank 3,1:52.1 ($1,950,887), winner of the 2015 Breeders Crown, Peter Haughton Memorial and William Wellwood Memorial, and the 2016 Colonial and Earl Beal Jr. Memorial; and 2016 Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year Ariana G 3,1:51.1 ($1,867,657), winner of the 2016 and 2017 Breeders Crown and 2017 Hambletonian Oaks. WESTERN IDEAL (Nominated as Stallion) p,5,1:48 ($1,455,422) Bay Horse, 1995 (Western Hanover - Leah Almahurst - Abercrombie) World champion pacer Western Ideal raced in 1997, 1999 and 2000. As a five-year-old in 2000, Western Ideal had his career season, winning the Breeders Crown, William R. Haughton Memorial, Canadian Pacing Derby and the Graduate Series. In his Breeders Crown victory, Western Ideal set a new world record 1:48 for five-year-old and older Standardbreds on a mile track. He was voted 2000 Dan Patch Older Pacing Horse of the Year. As a stallion, Western Ideal has sired winners of over $121 million, with 187 $200,000 winners and 12 millionaires to date. They include 2005 Horse of the Year and Hall of Fame Immortal Rocknroll Hanover p,3,1:48.3 ($2,754,038); 2009 Adios winner and world champion Vintage Master p,4,1:48.1f ($2,160,953); 2010 Matron Stakes winner and world champion Krispy Apple p,6,1:48.4f ($1,905,676); 2005 Woodrow Wilson winner Western Ace p,4,1:48.4 ($1,891,133); New Jersey Sire Stakes star Dial Or Nodial p,5,1:48.3f ($1,752,815); 2014 Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year Artspeak p,3,1:47.4 ($1,625,869); and 2010 Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year and world champion Big Jim p,2,1:49.1s ($1,541,924). As a broodmare sire, Western Ideal has sired the dams of winners of over $54 million to date, with 5 millionaires: 2014 Dan Patch and O'Brien Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year, world champion McWicked p,3,1:47.3f ($2,235,762); 2015 Canadian Pacing Derby winner, O'Brien Horse of the Year and world champion State Treasurer p,6,1:47 ($1,908,424); 2010 Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year, 2011 Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year and world champion See You At Peelers p,3,1:49.2f ($1,573,260); 2017 North America Cup winner Fear The Dragon p,3,1:48.4s ($1,492,782); and 2015 O'Brien Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year Solar Sister p,4,1:49.4f ($1,012,209). Janet Terhune

HARRINGTON, Del. - Daryl Bier and Joann Dombeck's Wind Of The North ($4.40, Victor Kirby) was a 1:56.1 harness racing winner in the $16,000 Open Trot Wednesday at Harrington Raceway. Theresademoninme led the field of seven to the opening quarter mile in 28.1 seconds. Dw's Ny Yank applied pressure to the half-mile in 57.3 seconds and three-quarters in 1:26.4. Wind Of The North waited in the two-hole throughout and emerged as the leader in deep stretch. Theresademoninme was second with Sunset Mike third. Trained by Jenny Bier, it was the ninth win of the season for the 7-year-old Cantab Hall. Kirby has a five win lead in the driver standings over Allan Davis. Meanwhile, trainer Brian Malone secured his first Harrington training title with a win in the 7th race with Nowucit Nowudont ($5.40, Jon Roberts) and with Westside Lindy ($4, Roberts) in the finale. Malone has 34 wins at the meet and will be presented his plaque on closing night October 19. Josh Green, a former Harrington training champ, is second with 29 wins. Matthew Sparacino

HARRINGTON, Del. - Daryl Bier and Joann Dombeck's Wind Of The North ($3.80, Victor Kirby) was a wire-to-wire harness racing winner at Harrington Raceway Wednesday in the featured $16,000 Open Trot in 1:55.2. The Cantab Hall gelding was a confident winner over Theresademoninme and Wingus for his seventh win of the year for trainer Jenny Bier. The venerable veteran with more than $810,000 earned lifetime, rebounded after finishing fourth as the heavy favorite last week. Andrew Glassmeyer's Bosston Cruiser ($4, Jon Roberts) had an auspicious start to his career. The freshman trotting gelding scorched a 2:01.1 win in his first lifetime start. The Don Boss Vita gelding is prepping for Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) stakes action, which will begin for trotters in a fortnight. Medinah Racing's Marley's Guy ($5, Kirby) won the sub-featured $11,000 Open II Trot in 1:57.1 for trainer Jim King Jr. Matthew Sparacino  

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 21 - Cantab Hall filly Courtney Hanover and harness racing trainer/driver Rick Zeron came out on top in a tight Photo Finish to win Monday's $35,200 Pure Ivory Series Final at Mohawk Racetrack. Courtney Hanover fought off an outside charging Jordan Blue Chip, who was the 3/2 favourite, to score the series finale victory at odds of 6-1. Zeron blasted his filly off the wings of the gate from the rail and fronted the field by the opening-quarter in :29. Shazamm, who won a first leg division, was moved to the lead from third and led the group by the half in :58. Courtney Hanover sat in the two-hole on the far turn, while Shazamm showed the way to three-quarters in 1:27.3. Outside challengers developed on the far turn and Jordan Blue Chip was situated third-over and ready for the stretch drive. In the stretch, Zeron was able to angle off the pylons and find clear racing room for his filly with an eighth of a mile to go. Meanwhile, Jordan Blue Chip was in full flight on the far outside for driver Paul MacDonell and looking to power by Courtney Hanover in the final stride. The two fillies hit the line together in 1:56.2 and it took a Photo Finish to determine Courtney Hanover had prevailed by the narrowest of margins. "No I didn't think I won," admitted Zeron post-race. "I knew my filly was digging real hard down the lane when I shook loose, but I didn't think I got up to beat Paul (MacDonell) because Paul had real good momentum going, but my filly dug in like the last time I raced her here." Courtney Hanover won an opening leg division of the Pure Ivory on August 7, but was scratched from the second leg due to sickness. "She cleared up real good and Dr. Malone I take my hat off, he took care of this filly and got her prepped up to where she is tonight," noted Zeron. "I'm real happy with her, she's a real nice filly." Courtney Hanover was a $47,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale. She now sports a record of two for five with $28,100 earned for owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion, Bruno Dipoce and Howard Taylor. The clocking of 1:56.2 lowered the Cantab Hall filly's career-mark by a fifth of a second. Zeron noted that Courtney Hanover's next start will be in the Champlain Stakes on August 31 followed by the Peaceful Way eliminations in September. The top-five finishers in Monday's Pure Ivory final were rounded out by Alloveragain, Ex Hanover and Strength Of A Woman. A $2 win ticket on Courtney Hanover returned $14.20. Courtney Hanover Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

There were 3 divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes races for the harness racing 2-year-old filly trotters on Thursday, August 10 at Harrah's Philadelphia, each going for a purse of roughly $54,000. In the first division, it was S M S Princess (Ake Svanstedt) picking up her first career win. The daughter of Cantab Hall-Won an Done was given a ground-saving steer the majority of the mile, as Julie Miller trainee Strawberry Hanover set a deliberate tempo (:28.4 / :56.2 / 1:25). S M S Hanover angled out after clearing past the three-quarter poll to split rivals for the win. Megadolce (Dave Miller) closed well for second, while Strawberry Hanover (Andy Miller) was third. S M S Princess is owned by Trainer Ake Svanstedt and Stall Musse Inc. She paid $8.40 to win In the second division, Nifty Norman trainee Live Love Laugh (Dave Miller) completed a long, persistent grind to break her maiden. The daughter of Donato Hanover-Shes Gone Again engaged leader (and favorite) Follow Streak (Andy Miller) at the 5/8ths marker, clearing just over 1/8th of a mile remaining. Live Laugh Love held off a rallying Bill's Lady (Tim Tetrick) to win by a length in 1:55. Follow Streak held third. Live Laugh Love ($18.00) is owned by Melvin Hartman, Dave Mc Duffee, and Diamond Creek Racing. The third division saw Chris Beaver trainee Zoe Bi (George Napolitano Jr.) use the passing lane to her advantage. The daughter of Donato Hanover-Octavia Bi drafted in behind the speed of the favorite Seviyorum (Andy Miller) to pick up the victory in 1:56. It was a lifetime mark in her fourth career victory in five starts. Zoe Bi out closed the Jimmy Takter driven Basquiat in the final strides, while Hey Blondie (Andy McCarthy) rallied for third. Zoe Bi ($12.20) is owned by Marion Beachy, Synerco Ventures Inc., and Chris Beaver. Driver George Napolitano Jr. had four wins on the afternoon. Michael Bozich    

YONKERS, NY, Sunday, August 6, 2017 - Taco Tuesday (Jordan Stratton, $23.40) did his damage from second-over Sunday afternoon (Aug. 6th), winning Yonkers Raceway's harness racing $68,000 Open Handicap Trot. Floating out of the gate from post position No. 6, Taco Tuesday found a home fifth while 19-10 choice Hemi Seelster (Jason Bartlett) walked to the lead. Overcoming his assigned eight-hole, 'Hemi' was issue-free through pokey early fractions of :29.1 and :59 and 1:28.4. Down the backside the final time, Buen Camino (Scott Zeron) took out of fourth, confronting Hemi Seelster as the pace of this trot picked up. After a 1:57.1 mile post, Hemi Seelster owned a shortening lead into the lane As Buen Camino was about to win the battle...but lose the war. Taco Tuesday, towed into it by Buen Camino, appreciated the gesture so much, he rolled right over him. Taco Tuesday won by a length, the mile-and-a-quarter going in 2:26.3. Hemi Seelster faded to third, with Sumatra (Eric Goodell) sand Georgie's Pockets (Joe Bongiorno) settling for the minors. For eighth choice (in the field of nine) Taco Tuesday, a 4-year-old Cantab Hall gelding owned by Vincent Laurenzo and trained by Rob Harmon, it was his sixth win in 14 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $107, the triple returned $489.50 and the superfecta paid $8,476. Sunday's installment of the 'New York, New York Double' offered a winning combination of 6-Rally Cry (Saratoga's 3rd race) and 4-Tarot (Yonkers' 7th race) paid $11.80 for every correct $1 wager. Total pool was $7,977. Note the Raceway's post time next Sunday (Aug. 13th) is 12:30 PM. Frank Drucker

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 www.tiogadowns.com. 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

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