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WASHINGTON, PA, July 19, 2014 -- A filly and her driver may be asked to do many things to win a stake race, but finding a path through a flock of truculent geese typically isn't among them. That was the case Friday at The Meadows, however, when Southwind Roulette and Yannick Gingras avoided the geese and captured a division of the Sand Tart, an $227,160 Pennsylvania Sires Stake for freshman filly pacers. The event was contested over three divisions, with Aria Hanover and Shakai Hanover also taking splits. Gingras enjoyed -- if that's the word -- a stake double, as he also piloted Aria Hanover. The geese, perhaps 15 of them, had "honkered" down around the three-quarter pole; as the field approached, they seemed determined to maintain their newfound territory. To complicate matters, a deer outside the fence was trying to match strides with the field. Dave Palone, sitting In The Pocket with Gold Beach behind Southwind Roulette, vacated the two hole and went wide when he noticed the birds. "I don't think Yannick knew they were there at all," Palone said. "I'm following him and I'm like, I better not be dead on his back in case his horse sticks her toes in. So I moved out in the two path. I figured, if he fell inside and mine fell outside, at least we wouldn't trip over them. I think we went right through them." Gingras indicated that by the time he saw the geese, there was no way to change course. "I've never seen geese and a deer at the same time," he said. "David screamed behind me when he saw them, but it was too late to move. My filly didn't care one bit. She just went right through them." The birds reluctantly scattered, and there were no injuries to humans or animals. The judges stamped the race official only after speaking with the drivers involved. Southwind Roulette defeated the rallying Kays Dragon Lady by 2 lengths in 1:53.2, with the unlucky Gold Beach third. Ron Burke trains the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Southwind Rio for Bradley Grant and Howard Taylor. Gingras' other stake victory was more conventional, as Aria Hanover followed the cover of Doctor Terror and prevailed in 1:53.4 for her second straight PASS win. Doctor Terror fell a head short while Arielle Lynn was fourth-placed-third. "About five horses left inside me," Gingras said. "I figured, if they mix it up enough, I'll be okay. But when I saw the first quarter in 28.2, I was a bit worried and wondered if I should have left harder. But it worked out. If they're good enough, they'll get it done." Jimmy Takter conditions the daughter of Well Said-Allamerican Cognac for Brittany Farms. Shakai Hanover was shuffled to fifth approaching the final turn but found late room outside and stormed through the stretch to score in 1:53.2, a head better than Ginger Tree Alexis. Eloquently Stated completed the ticket. Mark MacDonald drove the daughter of Well Said-She's A Fan, who broke her maiden with the victory, for trainer Carl Jamieson, who owns with Winnipeg Racing and Vira Johnson. "I was a little worried I might be too far back to win," MacDonald said. "She really paced hard when I showed her some racetrack. They're not supposed to win from there -- maybe third. At the wire, she really wanted it. She was sticking her head out and digging hard." Palone drove four winners on the 15-race card. Saturday's program at The Meadows kicks off Adios Week with three $50,000 divisions (races 3-5) of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids Presented by Coors Lite. Also featured are two events for sophomore filly pacers -- a $208,846 PA Sires Stake and an $80,000 PA Stallion Series stake. First post is 6:55 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

Every year some of North America's best three-year-old harness racing pacers come together and compete for one race; The Pepsi North America Cup! For on this night; records are broken, victories are celebrated and the price of glory is high! And where the list of champions grows and grows... This night is one of harness racing’s most anticipated events. It’s the event of the year that top trainers, owners, drivers, and fans alike come together to watch history being made!     You can feel the atmosphere of the grandstand change as the crowds begin to file in with spectators young and old; first time enthusiasts and experienced pros, as they all wait to catch a glimpse of the harness racing’s superstars. The races are always more intense on this night, and you can feel it as the trumpets blare and the race is called to post. The horses don’t know that it’s a bigger night; all that they know is that they are here to win! And the driver’s feel the pressure; because they know what glory lies beyond the finish line. The horse’s line up behind the gate, all of them ready to take one of the many champion titles to on the card. The gate lets the horses (and drivers) go, my heart begins to pound in time with the horse’s hooves hitting the dusty track.  I undo my seatbelt, getting ready to stand up when they turn for home! I don’t want to miss a second of the action. But for now I’m on the edge of my seat. I watch the horses race past me, I’m in awe. I tune everything else out. At the same time, I’m also watching the fractions go up on the toteboard. As they come off the turn I know the time has come! I grip the rail, the blood rushing through my body. I look to my mom, and she knows that means I’m going to be standing up. I stand up as my eyes are locked on the stretch. I fight the urge to sit; my legs begin to shake, but I tell myself I’m not going to sit until they cross the wire. I grip the rail tighter. I begin to scream louder than I have all of the race as they draw near. My lungs begin to feel dry because I’m screaming so loud. The horses make a final graceful dash for the wire; all of them wanting to be number one; with one trying to outstretch the other.  My concentration only breaks when I hear the announcer say with great excitement “...and that’s a new track record! After the winner returns to the Winner’s Circle. I watch attentively as the blanket is draped over him like the cape of a king. I watch as the winning connections hold the trophy high with pride and joy, as the cameras click and flash away! No matter how many North America Cups I attend, the same magic, wonder, and awe still exists; it never gets old and never will! Each year the horses get faster and faster, but the fierce competition remands the same. I have actually had the honor of being in the 2011 North America Cup Winner’s Circle. It was such an amazing experience, and one of which I will never forget. It all started a week before at the eliminations. I was along the rail when a gentleman came up to me and said “Sydney, if my horse wins next week, you can come out and have your picture taken.” I was so honored and excited. Then a few minutes later another gentlemen came up to me and said “No, no Sydney; if my horse wins next week, you make sure come out and get your picture taken with my horse!” Now I was even more excited! Now I wanted to know who was going to win the final! Was I going to have the honor of being in the Winner’s Circle? All of these questions would be answered next week. But next week seemed so far away. As I sat along the rail dreaming of next week, another gentleman named Carl Jamieson came  up to me and said “ Sydney, don’t listen to those two” (referring to the gentlemen I had just been speaking to.) “When my horse wins next week make sure you come out for your picture!” So now I had three invites to the Winner’s Circle! Now I was really looking forward to the final! I could hardly wait to see who would be crowned the 2011 champion! A week later the final of the 2011 North America Cup was here! It was a beautiful summer evening and there was a warm breeze blowing through; and the air was buzzing with excitement. As everyone pondered the same thought, who will win the 2011 North America Cup? The entire night I was looking forward to that one race- The North America Cup! Would I have the honor of being in the Winner’s Circle? If so who would it be with? These were all the questions floating through my mind. But before I could find out any of the answers, someone had to win the North America Cup!  The race was making my heart pound faster than it ever had before! The anticipation and excitement was growing with every turn they passed. I was also cheering for three horses at the same time; which as I learned that day is easier said than done. I had my seat belt undone, ready to stand when the horses rounded the final turn. As they turned for home I was practically jumping up and down. One of the horses I could go to the Winner’s Circle with was going to win! Up The Credit would be crowned the 2011 winner of the North America Cup! I quickly sat back down in my chair, buckled my seat belt the fastest I ever have, and my dad and  I ran to the gate of Winner’s Circle waiting for Jody Jamieson to turn Up The Credit into the Winner’s Circle! Once there I met Carl Jamieson, I wished him a big congratulations on his win and gave him a hug! And then we all packed into the Winner’s Circle; all overjoyed with the evenings events!   After the majority of pictures had been taken, Carl Jamieson came over to me and said “Sydney! Here hold it, and we’ll take a picture!” I replied “No, but thank you!” I was so nervous and I did not want to drop the North America Cup!  So Carl (Jamieson) held it on my lap, and we had our picture taken holding the North America Cup! It was a pretty amazing feeling. And to this day that picture hangs on the wall in my living room... After I was back at my spot on the rail, Jody ( Jamieson) was walking back to the paddock signing autographs, as he walked by me I stuck my hand through the bars in the rail and said “ congratulations Mr. Jamieson!” He stopped, shook my hand, and said to the gentleman standing beside my mom and me, “Can I borrow your marker?” The gentleman agreed. My mom turned to grab our program for him to sign. Jody (Jamieson) said “that’s okay! I can do better then that!”  He took off his North America Cup baseball cap, signed it, and placed it on my head; and he continued to walk back to the paddock. I was in shock; I couldn’t believe what had just happened. I lowered my head and the tears began to fall, not because I was upset, but because I was so genuinely touched but what Jody Jamieson had done! For the rest of the night I wore that hat with such pride! I will forever treasure that hat. In fact that night I slept with it like a teddy bear!  And I kept waking up because I didn’t want to lose it!  Today, that baseball cap hangs on a rack above my bed. And every night before I fall asleep, I look up at that very special baseball cap. And it brings me to that very special night and all the lasting memories that were created... This story is a collection of only a few of the memories I have from the North America Cup! Each year new memories are created; all of which I will always hold near and dear to my heart! Sydney Weaver is 14 years old and resides in Acton, Ontario, Canada. She has been involved with harness racing for years, grooms horses, jogs them on the track, co-owns a racehorse and has already won major youth writing awards. Sydney also has Cerebral Palsy, but has never let her disability hold her back from achieving her goals.

Up The Credit toyed with the six foes he tackled in Wednesday $11,000 Preferred 2 at Grand River Raceway, and his clocking of 1:53 was the quickest mile of the season at the Elora half-miler. Up The Credit shot to the top from Post 2 and successfully chopped out splits of :27.1, :55.3 and 1:24 before using a :29-second closing quarter to win by a pair of lengths over Mach Of Ballykeel. My Friend Diaz rallied late and took home the show dough. Jody Jamieson engineered the winning trip for the six-year-old son of Western Terror-Cantbuymehappiness. Trainer Carl Jamieson co-owns the classy campaigner with Tom Kyron, Brian Paquet and Joanne Morrison. It was the second win of the season for the 14-time winner who boosted his bankroll to $1,316,998 with the victory. To view the rest of the story click here.

TORONTO, May 2 - The Princess Series continued on Friday evening at Woodbine as 15 sophomore pacing fillies showcased their talent in a pair of $20,000 second round divisions. Bahama Blue, driven by Jody Jamieson, captured the first split in 1:53.1 at odds of 9-1. Jamieson and Bahama Blue were first to the front to lead at the quarter in :27.3, but then found themselves In The Pocket heading towards the half as heavily-favoured Rock N Roll Xample (James MacDonald) took over command. Rock N Roll Xample would lead her six rivals past the half in :56.3 and 1:24.4. Down the stretch Rock N Roll Xample and Bahama Blue separated themselves from their rivals, but it was Bahama Blue getting the upper-hand in deep stretch to win by a length. Artful Impulse (Randy Waples) finished third. Trained and co-owned by Carl Jamieson along with David Shea and Thomas Kyron $88,540. The daughter of Somebeachsomewhere posted her first victory in 2014 from four starts and enjoyed a new career best. She paid $20.70 to win. After finishing second in the opening round last week, Take That Hanover and Mike Saftic redeemed themselves to take the second division in 1:53.2. Saftic had the daughter of Well Said out quickest for command in the early stages, but allowed a parked-out Polk Dot Hanover (Jody Jamieson) to the lead at the opening quarter in :27. The lead wouldn't last long heading towards the half as Take That Hanover was on the move again to lead past the half in :56.3 and three-quarters in 1:24.4. Polk Dot Hanover angled to the outside for Jamieson at the three-quarter pole, but Take That Hanover quickly opened up on her rival and was a going-away winner in deep stretch to win by four and three quarter lengths. Wildcat Magic (Chris Christoforou) finished second with Lasting Appeal (Steve Condren) third. Trained and owned by Jack Darling, Take That Hanover increased her career earnings to $62,909. She paid $4.70 to win. by Greg Gangle, for WEG

It has been such a downward spiral for the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs that this latest lowest of lows has harness racing driver Jody Jamieson contemplating switching allegiances to another NHL team. As for which team Jody might start cheering for, nothing has been decided but all of us Maple Leafs fans understand that at some point we must all move on or do we become the Chicago Cubs of the National Hockey League. "It's in my blood" says Jody, "I'm a diehard fan but this is getting out of hand." Jody's career in harness racing has been remarkable, with some comparing his success to the likes of hockey greats Wayne Gretzky or Sidney Crosby. As flattered as Jody is by the comparison, in no way does he consider himself to be painted with the same brush as the hockey legends. "It's a lofty comparison, and it's not something I am not comfortable with" Jody notes. Admittedly, Jody feels he was able to jump start his career thanks to his father, legendary trainer Carl Jamieson. "My father is a hall of fame horseman and I had probably one of the best starts anybody could have in this business, by having him back me up." Jody says. A key piece of advice given to Jody by his dad is to always be respectful, regardless of whom that person is. It doesn't matter if it's a groom or a racing official, everyone matters. Jody Jamieson's name is up there with drivers such as Tim Tetrick, Mike Lachance, Chris Christoforou and Brian Sears and even after all the wins and accolades, Jody's focus hasn't changed. There's never a race he takes for granted and Jody admits he's human and makes mistakes, like everyone else. "I'm out to win every possible race I'm in... it's never lack of trying or being prepared but I make mistakes. Thank God there is another race right after that one where I can try and redeem myself." Jody says. With any sport, competition is extremely fierce and the guys who lead the standings are always battling between themselves and new comers. The saying goes, if you're going to win, you want to beat the best and Jody acknowledges everyone on the track wants to make a name for themselves. "That's what makes this game so fun, in one moment you're king of the castle but twenty minutes later you're knocked off." Jody adds, "It's very competitive, every twenty minutes, every night of the week." All drivers and trainers have been through dry spells, going through stretches of time without positive results. A piece of advice Jody was given is you need to learn to lose well before you learn to win well. "Don't get to high with the highs and don't get to low with the lows" is Jody's approach to keeping a level head to remain mentally grounded. "If you look at my record, I have way more losses than I do wins and I've learned to deal with it and keep it on the track as much as possible." With people having hard days or rough spells, it's amazing how well the horsemen are able to cope and still keep it classy amongst them. "I find in Canada and Ontario, it's the kind of people we are." Jody says. "We all try to get along off the track; there is no reason to be enemies off the track and not like each other. But when we go to the gate, it's on! I think that's taken for granted in other places, with people taking issue of being beat in a race." "Not only is life too short, our careers are too short to be hung up on every last thing, so you have to keep it light." Jody says. "I think I can relate to almost anybody, I enjoy busting (chops) and I can handle having my (chops) busted as well." Speaking with Jody, the biggest take away I got would be understanding how tough it is to mature in such a highly competitive sport. Yet in an odd way it can still be very easy. Yes I am aware there is a contradiction to what I have just written but the difficulties I perceive is being young with an ego. At this point I am not speaking for a driver, I am thinking of myself as a young one who is 18 or 20 and all I focus on is me and my success. If something were to come in between, I can honestly admit I would of taken issue from the get go. However, through it all in any sport, life hands you a constant wave of highs and lows and the earlier you notice these waves, the easier it is to 'ride it out' so to speak. Things can't always go your way, if they did, how would anyone learn? Over the last couple of years, Jody admits there have been some up and downs and this year he is more driven because of that. "Last year it took me until December to win a Classic race. It was the Cleveland Classic with Apprentice Hanover." Apprentice Hanover is trained by Benjamin Wallace and won the race in a time of 1:52.1 at Northfield Park. "There were big races where I came in second or third, but it wasn't the win." Jody admits. Jody is happily married to Stephanie and Jody has a daughter Hailey who is 11, a son Jett who is 2 and a baby girl on the way who is due in July. As much success as Jody's had over the years, he is now racing for his family, not just for him and this means ensuring his family can live happily. "I have a young family and I am recently married and I want to be a part of their lives to... I'm going to spend the best time with my family and I am not going to change anything. I'm going to be prepared as ever, more prepared than I've ever been to go on the race track every night." Jody says, "Before it was about wins and putting up big numbers, now it's about making a great living and being able to provide for my family down the road." "I had the one year where I broke the wins records in Canada. I drove right until the end of the year and then I quit for a month and just relaxed, it gets really stressful.... I had that one (great) year and I thought I want to treat myself a little bit." Jody adds, "I want to be the top guy and make enough money to enjoy life." Jody also missed some time away from the track to attend the O'Brien awards and Jody flew to Finland to be the ambassador of Canadian harness racing. To add to Jody's time away was the volcano eruption in Finland where the dust had to settle before Jody could fly back home. So at what point did Jody change his outlook? Or at what point did a light go off where Jody realized it was more than just about him? "When you're in it, running from track to track winning races and having some success, you don't think of anything until you're laying on a beach in Mexico... you don't think of it until then." Jody points out. Throughout his career, Jody has grown close to many people who have supported him and who always believe in his talents. "Mark MacDonald and I used to be thick as thieves and as best friends off the track and fierce enemies on the track." Jody continues, "We'd do anything to beat each other and Mark moved away and we haven't kept in touch as much, but definitely Mark was a huge influence in my career. He helped me learn my craft and have a better mindset on the race track for sure." Jody loves what the new Meadowlands racetrack is doing, "they're doing incredible work" he says and at one point in Jody's career, the idea to go to the big M did cross his mind, but home is where the heart is. "I'm from Moffat, Ontario, Canada and this is where my family is and this is where my family's family is. This is where I'll be unless something worse happens like what is happening with this Liberal government." "In 2011 the Standardbred industry received $176 million dollars to operate harness racing in Ontario. In 2014 harness racing will be lucky to have $70-$80 million." Jody points out. The money the racing industry received is from an agreement between the racetracks and the Ontario Lottery Gaming Corporation, (OLG) which is a Government entity, based on revenues brought in from the creation of the SLOTS programs at each racetrack. With the racetracks already established, the OLG agreed to give a percentage of all revenue to the racetracks so the OLG could put in slot machines and the money given to the tracks would go towards purse money to create a higher level of competition within the province. Anthony Macdonald, who is a horseman, is running as a PC provincial candidate hoping if an election takes place, the standardbred industry will have a stronger voice at Queen's Park, (the provincial legislator). Jody is a strong advocate and supporter of Anthony and his efforts to bring more awareness to the standardbred community and Jody is willing to help anywhere he can. "Anyone who knows Anthony, you can't tune him out and I am going to campaign hard to help get him elected." Jody states. "We have 3 or 4 candidates who are pro harness racing on the Conservative side." Jody feels strongly that the Liberal government has messed up several industries outside of harness racing, such as the gas industry, the powers sector and even the teachers union. "Horses don't speak" says Jody, "they are nice to look at and people love them but they don't speak. We need to do a better job speaking for them.... The OLG's revenue was around a billion dollars and we were only getting around 20 percent, maybe less. Now the OLG is taking in the full 100 percent in revenue. We are in trouble and this money, (the $500 million/5 year proposal from the Liberals), it has kept racing open but we are on a life line and we are bleeding badly." Away from the politics and the tracks, Jody is the type of guy who likes to help others where and when he can. Jody would love to help the Toronto Maple Leafs, maybe try and get them a Stanley Cup sometime soon! "I'm so aggravated with this season, I like Randy Carlyle. He's a horse guy who started in the horse racing business before he was drafted." As you can tell, Jody is a massive hockey fan and aside from the Leafs, his favorite team is the Jamieson Jets, an adult men's hockey team. One thing to point out is Jody's son Jett was not named after the hockey team, even though some people make that connection. However if the dad who named the son said it wasn't, there's nothing to discuss. If Jody had a man cave, it would be filled with Toronto Maple Leaf paraphernalia and his entire top win photos including the North America Cup pictures, the Battle of Waterloo and Breeders Crown pictures. To date, the second heat of the 2007 Little Brown Jug is Jody's most memorable race. In that race he was driving great horse Tell All. "I could remember my heart beating the whole time."Jody says. "The half was in 56.1... I kicked the ear plugs on him around the last turn and he dug in, but he really didn't dig in like I thought. Brian Sears slipped off of David Miller's back going three wide in the stretch and I didn't know half way down the stretch if I could hang on. So I hit the wire not knowing if you have a clear cut win. It was the best ever (feeling)... I'll never forget him." "I would love to win the Hambletonian. I've been fortunate to win big races and I'd love to win them all again. Just because I won them, doesn't mean they're off my bucket list." Jody adds, "It would mean a lot to me to win any of those races again, they're special, special races." Jody enjoys interacting with fans. "I love meeting fans...they message me of Facebook and Twitter. I think its wild and I thrive on it, I love meeting with the fans and doing whatever I can to meet fans." Jody says. A few summers ago, Woodbine asked Jody to go to a Jack Astor's opening in Toronto as the restaurant was doing simulcasting. "I went in my driver suit, not a soul knew who I was, not a soul and I had my suit on and they knew what I did at the end of the day they loved it. I loved it and meeting people who want to get to know me. Like I said, horses can't talk but I can and I want this industry I love to survive and prosper." By: Roderick Balgobin www.supernovasportsclub.com Twitter: ScSupernova  

Favourite Cougar Hall earned his second consecutive win over the game Machal Jordan in the featured $34,000 Preferred Pace on Saturday night at Woodbine Racetrack. Driven by Jack Moiseyev, Cougar Hall matched his 1:51.4 season's mark that he established while winning the top class by half a length over Machal Jordan last Saturday. In this evening's Preferred, J J Shark (Sylvain Filion) forced the leaving post eight starter Lucky Terror (Jonathan Drury) to settle for the pocket spot during a :26.3 first quarter battle. Dali (Luc Ouellette) got away third with 6-5 favourite Cougar Hall following in fourth. As the field headed into the backstretch, Dali moved underway from third and took over the lead before hitting the half-mile marker in :55.3. The stallion was then confronted by Cougar Hall, who cleared to command past the 1:23.4 third quarter station and began to open up multiple lengths on the field to secure the victory. The late-closing Machal Jordan (Roger Mayotte) narrowed the winning margin to one and a quarter lengths. In Commando (Chris Christoforou), a half-length winner over Cougar Hall in his last outing two weeks ago, finished third.   Cougar Hall now has four wins in six starts during his four-year-old campaign and a seasonal bankroll totalling $60,100. The grey son of Somebeachsomewhere is owned by trainer Jeff Gillis, Gerald Stay, Mac Nichol, Thomas Kyron and Carl Jamieson. Cougar Hall paid $4.40 to win. by Greg Gangle, for WEG

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  

Rick Zeron expects a strong performance from I Jasmin in Saturday's C$374,000 Peaceful Way Stakes for 2-year-old filly trotters at Mohawk Racetrack, but believes the best is yet to come. "You're going to hear a lot from her - and if everything goes well over the winter - you're going to hear more about her next year," Zeron said. "You're going to hear a lot more." Zeron has trained I Jasmin for nearly two months and drove the filly in her first three races. Last Thursday, with Zeron's son Scott at the lines, I Jasmin was one of three Peaceful Way elimination winners, along with Danica Hall and Grammas Girl, capturing her division by one length over Reflection Hanover in 1:57.1. It was I Jasmin's first victory in four starts, although with a little luck the daughter of Muscle Mass-Orillia Seelster might have visited the winner's circle a week earlier. On Aug. 29 in a division of the Champlain Stakes at Mohawk, the elder Zeron and I Jasmin were trapped in traffic and unable to find room until late in the race. I Jasmin trotted home in :27.2, but finished third behind Riveting Rosie and Scream And Shout in a 1:55.3 mile. "Unfortunately I didn't get what I wanted in the Champlain, but she still raced extremely well for me, which I was quite happy with," Zeron said. "I got jammed up, but she was huge at the end. I just couldn't get going to where I wanted to go, but she was huge for me. "Scott had seen that, so he knew what kind of horse we had going into this (elimination)." I Jasmin is owned by British Columbia's Ming Siu, who bred the filly with Yves Blouin. I Jasmin qualified once for Siu in June, but went off stride. She was sent to Zeron, and after enduring some growing pains, was ready for action in August. "She was a little on the hot side when I first got her and had a few issues bothering her, but we've got that all taken care of," Zeron said. "I told the owner I had to be a little more careful with her to make sure everything was OK so we could get our job done. She's 2 years old, she's a filly, she gets excited. She just wants to get everything done quickly and then call it a day. "We've got that calmed down and harnessed the power. I know exactly how fast she can go and when she can go. She just does everything I ask her to. And she does everything perfectly." In her Peaceful Way elim, Scott Zeron waited patiently in sixth place with I Jasmin before unleashing a :27.4 final quarter-mile to erase a 6-1/4 length deficit and win going away. "She's pretty versatile and I could have just easily spoken to her to leave, but I wanted to take my time," Scott Zeron said following the win. "I got to watch her (in her previous start) when she got locked in and she was climbing over them at the wire in a (1):56 mile, so (this) wasn't too tough on her." Scott Zeron, who was driving I Jasmin because Rick Zeron was at Vernon Downs, will be at the lines again in the Peaceful Way final. "He said he looked forward to watching me race her on Saturday, but I told him he got her there, he can drive her in the final," Rick Zeron said. "He's an outstanding driver. The old man can sit off to the side and watch the young fella. I don't have a problem with that. "I think she's going to give Scott a really good drive on Saturday. She's on point; she's peaking at the right time. I think if everything goes well we could turn the page and get our picture taken. I'm looking for big things from her coming into this week." Following is the Peaceful Way field with listed drivers and trainers: 1. Game On Hanover, Sylvain Filion, Dustin Jones; 2. I Jasmin, Scott Zeron, Rick Zeron; 3. Danica Hall, Trevor Ritchie, Doug McIntosh; 4. Grammas Girl, Randy Waples, Brad Maxwell; 5. Riveting Rosie, Paul Macdonell, John Bax; 6. Reflection Hanover, Jody Jamieson, Jeff Gillis; 7. Scream And Shout, Jimmy Takter, Takter; 8. Serendipitious, Jody Jamieson, Carl Jamieson; 9. Toughs Legacy, Ron Pierce, Nifty Norman; 10. White Becomes Her, Mario Baillargeon, Benoit Ballargeon.  by Ken Weingartner/Harness Racing Communications/USTA  

Jim Mulinix has seen months of work go by in less than 108 seconds, but he doesn't mind. That's what he's been working for. Mulinix's A Rocknroll Dance last weekend became the first pacer in harness racing history to win three consecutive races in less than 1:48 when he captured the Canadian Pacing Derby by a nose over Clear Vision in 1:47.2 at Mohawk. The time set the stakes record and equaled the track and Canadian records. In his two previous starts, A Rocknroll Dance won his Canadian Pacing Derby elimination in 1:47.3 and won an invitational at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in 1:47.4. The time at Pocono equaled the fastest mile in history on a five-eighths-mile oval. On Saturday, A Rocknroll Dance is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the $125,000 Jim Ewart Memorial Invitational for older pacers at Scioto Downs in Mulinix's home state of Ohio. Counting the multiple-stakes-winning A Rocknroll Dance, the nine-horse field includes five millionaires, with Fred And Ginger, Pet Rock, Sweet Lou and Up The Credit completing that group. Kayne Kauffman will drive A Rocknroll Dance in the Ewart. The two teamed to win the Battle of Lake Erie at Northfield Park, near Cleveland, in July. "This horse takes every bit of our attention," said Mulinix, who works with his wife, Ellen, in training and caring for A Rocknroll Dance. Mulinix owns the horse with Diamond Creek Farm, Denny Miller, J&T Silva Stables and the Muscara Racing Trust in a group called the A Rocknroll Dance Stable. "I'm not trying to sound arrogant, but it was no secret last year that (1):48 isn't enough to do it against this group. We knew we had to go (1):47 and nine months ago we started planning to be able to do that. It's not just one thing, either. It's working extra trips, the shoeing, the equipment, the driver - even giving him more room in the trailer and more cushion for when he ships. "He's a big, strong horse so I'm able to work him between races and that helps keep him sharp. It's hard to keep that sharp every week, but I'm lucky that he's sound enough to do it. People don't realize how much effort it takes. I've got 40 years in the business and I'm putting every ounce of it into this horse." A Rocknroll Dance was bothered by a sore mouth early in the season, but since having the issue resolved has won five of eight races, including his last three in a row. For his career, the 4-year-old horse has won 16 of 45 starts and earned $2.38 million. Tim Tetrick drove A Rocknroll Dance in his five starts since winning the Battle of Lake Erie. After finishing third in his elimination of the U.S. Pacing Championship and seventh in the final, A Rocknroll Dance has been doing the quick step. "It was amazing Tim was available and he's been a good fit," Mulinix said. "I just had to get Tim to have some confidence in the horse. I told him not to worry about trying to set up a trip, this horse can rough it a bit. Once he did, (Tim) got a little more confident in the horse and in me." Mulinix, who is based in Wauseon, west of Toledo, is happy to be racing in Ohio for the next several weeks. After the Ewart Memorial at Scioto, A Rocknroll Dance's next dance will be Sept. 19 in the Winbak Farm Pace at the Delaware County Fairgrounds on Little Brown Jug Day. "When we get to Scioto, he'll think it's just the first stop for water," Mulinix joked about the much-traveled A Rocknroll Dance. "It's nice to race at home. So many people follow this horse (from the region) that it will be nice to race there." Following is the field for the Ewart Memorial with driver, trainer (and morning line): 1. Ideal Champ, Chris Page, Joe Holloway (8-1); 2. Up The Credit, Ronnie Wrenn Jr., Carl Jamieson (8-1); 3. Pet Rock, Dan Noble, Virgil Morgan Jr. (7-2); 4. Fred And Ginger, Mike Wilder, Ron Burke (6-1); 5. A Rocknroll Dance, Kayne Kauffman, Jim Mulinix (5-2); 6. Our Lucky Chip, Greg Grismore, Jason Miller (10-1); 7. Sweet Lou, Tony Hall, Burke (9-2); 8. Rockin Finish, Brad Hanners, Morgan Jr. (15-1); 9. Hurrikane Kingcole, Randy Tharps, John McDermott (10-1). by Ken Weingartner  

A 2-year-old filly pacer bred and owned by Kentucky's Jim Avritt Sr., Precocious Beauty has won three of five races, finished second in her two losses, and earned $87,158 heading into Saturday's C$451,000 She's A Great Lady Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack in Ontario. Two weeks ago, Precocious Beauty won her division of the Eternal Camnation Stakes at Mohawk in a stakes-record 1:50.2, which is the fastest time of the season for a 2-year-old filly pacer and was just one-fifth of a second off I Luv The Nitelife's world record for a 2-year-old filly pacer. She followed that performance by winning her She's A Great Lady elimination by 2-1/4 lengths over Bahama Blue in 1:52.1. She starts Saturday's She's A Great Lady final from post two for driver Doug McNair and trainer Gregg McNair. "I've been in this business for 50 years so I know anything can happen," Avritt said. "You've got to stay healthy and you've got to stay sound and you've got to have a little racing luck. But I certainly wouldn't trade her for anything else in there, that's for sure. Doug and Gregg have done a great job with her." Precocious Beauty is a daughter of stallion Art Major out of Avritt's mare Precious Beauty. She is a half-sister to millionaire Sportswriter, who was named harness racing's best 2-year-old male pacer in 2009 and won the North America Cup at age 3 before being retired because of injury. Avritt bred and raced Precious Beauty, who won a $141,750 Kentucky Standardbred Sales Company Stakes in 2003. That victory is Avritt's most lucrative to date, followed by Precocious Beauty's win in her $105,654 Eternal Camnation division on Aug. 17. Precious Beauty, a daughter of Jate Lobell and Avritt's broodmare Dominique Semalu, won her first six career races before finishing seventh in her elimination for the She's A Great Lady. "She got sick and didn't do any good," Avritt said. "But I liked her and kept her and bred her. "I was fortunate to buy Dominique Semalu (in 1995) at the sale in Harrisburg," he added about the family. "She just turned out to be a really great mare for me. She threw some really high-priced yearlings for us and we kept some of her fillies. One of the fillies I kept out of her was Precious Beauty. Another one was Stunning Beauty, who is the dam of Swinging Beauty, who has made almost three-quarters of a million dollars. "My plan is to keep every filly out of Precious Beauty and every filly out of Stunning Beauty." The 72-year-old Avritt liked Precocious Beauty from the beginning. He broke the filly before sending her to Florida for winter training with Gregg McNair. "She was a great looking filly; an absolutely gorgeous filly," Avritt said. "She's always been a big robust filly. She stood perfect and was very athletic. "She's done far more than I could've ever expected. She won her first start in (1):54 at Tioga Downs with the last half in :56 and I knew she had to be a pretty good filly. Then she had a couple of tough races where she got roughed up pretty bad, but the way she came out of it and the way she raced I thought she could be a top filly. When she won the Eternal Camnation, I thought this is more than a pretty good filly. "Doug says she's pretty easy to drive. She's got tremendous speed off the gate, tremendous acceleration and a tremendous will to win." The She's A Great Lady final also features elimination winner Beach Gal, who captured her division by four lengths over Sudoku in 1:50.3. The third-place finisher in that elim, Gallie Bythe Beach, has won five of six races this year. Following is the She's A Great Lady field in post position order: 1. Rockingcam Park, Andy Miller, Ron Coyne Jr.; 2. Precocious Beauty, Doug McNair, Gregg McNair; 3. Beach Gal, Scott Zeron, Dave Menary; 4. Ravinia Hanover, Ron Pierce, Jimmy Takter; 5. Gallie Bythe Beach, John Campbell, Jim Campbell; 6. Sudoku, Jim Morrill Jr., Tony O'Sullivan; 7. I Need Hotstuff, Tim Tetrick, Menary; 8. Bahama Blue, Mark MacDonald, Carl Jamieson; 9. Ali Blue, Yannick Gingras, Takter; 10. Lasting Appeal, John Campbell, Robert McIntosh. by Ken Weingartner  

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 9 - Driver Jody Jamieson surpassed the coveted career earnings milestone of $100-million with a victory aboard Panpero Firpo in an $18,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots division for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings Friday evening at Mohawk Racetrack. Jamieson and Panpero Firpo found the wire first in 1:51.1 for trainer David Menary. The momentous occasion came in race two on the program. Jamieson, a three-time O’Brien Award winner as Canada’s Driver of the Year, was honoured to surpass the milestone. "A 36-year-old with a $100 million career is just unbelievable to me," said Jamieson following the milestone. "I've had some great memories in races I've won on my own and with my dad (Carl). "I remember when John Campbell went to over the $100 million mark," said Jamieson. "He set the bar. We've all, as drivers, dreamed of somewhere, someday attaining something comparable to him. Obviously he's gone into the stratosphere with over $280 million made.” Jamieson has driven winners of more than $3.7 million in purses this year and is currently the leading money-earning driver in Canada. His largest victories came in the 2008 and 2011 North America Cup aboard Tell All and Up The Credit.  The latter was trained by his father, Carl Jamieson. In 2009, Jamieson set a Canadian record for most driving wins in a single season, visiting the winner’s circle 796 times.  The Moffat resident also captured the World Driving Championship in Finland and Sweden in 2001. He has 6,628 career victories. Greg Gangle

ELORA, ON — With the top five freshman trotting fillies sitting on the sidelines for the fifth leg of the Grassroots Series, the Wednesday, Aug. 14 event at Grand River Raceway presents some exciting opportunities for fillies hoping to climb the division ladder. With one win, one third and one sixth to her credit since joining the Grassroots circuit, Erin Hall is currently ranked ninth. The Deweycheatumnhowe daughter will start from Post 5 in the sixth race and will be looking to boost her point tally in an effort to earn one of 10 coveted berths in the 2013 Grassroots Championship. Rockwood resident Carl Jamieson conditions Erin Hall and shares ownership of the filly with young partners Hailey Jamieson and Mackenzie O’Sullivan of Cambridge. Also hoping to gain ground on the leaders Wednesday is Valencia Sol, who will start from Post 4 in the second $18,000 division. Sixth in her Grassroots debut at Georgian Downs on July 13, the Amigo Hall daughter bounced back with a victory over the Mohawk Racetrack oval on July 20, but missed the Aug. 6 test at Georgian Downs due to sickness. She currently sits twelfth in the point race. Strathroy resident Greg Dustin trains and drives Valencia Sol for owner-breeder Jackie Drysdale of Orangeville and Darlene Hayes of Carlisle. The two-year-old trotting fillies will be featured in Races 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7 on Grand River Raceway’s Wednesday evening program, which gets under way at 7:05 pm. For complete entries For up to date point standings, race replays, and more.        Sandra Snyder  

INNISFIL, ON — Chelseas Chance earned her second Grassroots victory at Georgian Downs on Tuesday evening and jumped back to the top of the two-year-old trotting filly division standings. The Kadabra daughter and driver Steve Condren of Milton eased away from Post 1 in the fifth $15,000 Grassroots division and tucked in fourth on the rail as Erin Hall led the field through fractions of :28.2, :59.1 and 1:28.4. Turning for home Condren asked the fan favourite for an extra gear and Chelseas Chance responded with a smart finishing kick that propelled her to a three and three-quarter length victory in 1:58.4. Supreme Monarch closed well to be second, leaving Erin Hall to settle for third. Windsor resident Bob McIntosh conditions Chelseas Chance for his partner, and fellow breeder, C S X Stables of Liberty Center, OH. Through four Grassroots appearances the filly has three wins and one second for a point tally of 175. Condren and McIntosh also teamed up to earn Lenny Mac her second Grassroots win. Another homebred daughter of Kadabra, owned by McIntosh and Earl Hill Jr. of Ohsweken, Lenny Mac cruised along on the front end to a five and one-half length victory in a personal best 2:00.3. The victory, over Mount Juliette and Majestic Jewel, boosted Lenny Mac into third spot in the division standings, behind her stablemate and Muscle Girl, whose Grassroots win streak was halted at three when she made a miscue in the fifth race and finished seventh. Taking advantage of Muscle Girl’s error was Serendipitous, who looked very impressive in her first lifetime start, circling around the leaders and trotting down the stretch to a four and one-half length victory in 1:58.4 for driver Jody Jamieson of Moffat. Jamieson engineered the win for his father, trainer Carl Jamieson of Rockwood, and Thomas Kyron of Etobicoke. Pocket sitter Jayport Princess and Oceana rounded out the top three. The other Grassroots divisions were captured by Danica (2:00); My Kind Of Pretty (2:00.2); and Jamandra (2:00.2). The two-year-old trotting fillies make their fifth Grassroots start at Grand River Raceway on August 14, and Ontario Sires Stakes action will be back at Georgian Downs next Tuesday, Aug. 13 with the fourth Grassroots event for the three-year-old trotting colts. For complete results please Click here.  

ELORA, ON - A hefty lineup of activities at Grand River Raceway's Industry Day Celebration this Monday afternoon (Aug. 5) includes three special presentations. Trainer Carmen Auciello will kick off the afternoon from a familiar place (the winner's circle) but for a different reason. The multi-talented horseman will sing the Canadian and American anthems at the beginning of the Industry Day broadcast at 1:00. There is a small caveat, though: Auciello's wife Ashley is expecting the couple's second child on August 5. Should their bundle arrive on-time, fans will have to settle for an instrumental version of Oh! Canada. Standardbred Canada will make a special presentation to Canadian Sportsman assistant editor, Lauren Lee after race six. Lee will receive an International Media Award in the Best Magazine Article category, as announced at the 2013 World Trotting Conference held in Paris, France earlier this summer. All Hail The Pail was published in the August 5, 2011 edition of The Canadian Sportsman and tells the story of San Pail and the impact he made on trainer and co-owner Rod Hughes' life and family. Lauren also won Standardbred Canada's 2011 Media Excellence award for this story. Following race seven, Grand River Raceway and the Canadian Horse Racing Hall Of Fame will salute Carl Jamieson, who will be inducted into the Hall Of Fame on August 15. Jamieson is a five-time winning trainer of the Battle Of Waterloo. The Rockwood, ON horseman won the race every other year from the inaugural edition (at Elmira Raceway) in 1998 through 2006. In 2000, he trained the top three finishers: C T Rocket, Warrawee Caesar and Futurestarkillean. Festivities and the TV broadcast kick off at 1:00 p.m. Post time for the first dash is 1:30. The all-stakes card includes consolations and finals for the Battle Of Waterloo and Battle Of The Belles, plus seven divisions of three-year-old pacing fillies in the Grassroots Series of the Ontario Sires Stakes. For complete event details. Kelly Spencer  

ELORA, ON — Harness racing fans from across Ontario will descend on Grand River Raceway on the Civic Holiday, Monday, Aug. 5, to witness the finest young racehorses in the province compete for over $340,000. Warming up the Industry Day crowd for the main events — the Battle of the Belles and Battle of Waterloo Finals — will be 55 of Ontario’s top three-year-old pacing fillies competing in seven $12,857 Grassroots events. Trainer Carl Jamieson will start two fillies in the Ontario Sires Stakes contest, Land Of Angels in the fourth race and Senorita Santanna in the sixth. Land Of Angels heads into the third Grassroots event tied for sixteenth in the point standings. The Badlands Hanover daughter recorded a fourth and a second in the first two events, but heads into Monday’s test off back-to-back victories in overnight action, the most recent coming at Grand River Raceway on July 31 where she halted the teletimer at 1:58.3. Rockwood resident Jamieson conditions the filly for his wife Debra Jamieson and their son Jody will steer Land Of Angels from Post 5 in the fourth race. Moffat resident Jody Jamieson will also steer Senorita Santanna from Post 6 in the sixth race. The Santanna Blue Chip daughter has one win and one second in Grassroots action on her sophomore resume and currently sits second in the division point standings. Carl Jamieson shares ownership of the filly with Thomas Kyron of Toronto. Races 3 and 5 feature the Battle of the Belles and Battle of Waterloo consolations and the finals go postward as Races 9 and 11. Guelph resident Gregg McNair qualified three two-year-old pacing fillies for the $75,400 Battle of the Belles and two freshman pacing colts in the $144,500 Battle of Waterloo. Ontario Sires Stakes regulars Lady Shadow, Can Art and Momara will start from Posts 4, 5, and 8, respectively, in the filly event while Three Of Clubs benefits from Post 1 and OK Gladiator gets Post 5 in the colt battle. Post time for Grand River Raceway’s annual Industry Day program is 1:30 pm, with the Grassroots fillies featured in Races 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, and 10. by Sandra Snyder  

Top pacers in harness racing will now meet in final on August 3!

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