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VERNON, NY—Goddesss and Southwind Spirit each earned champion status as the result of their first-place finishes in Friday night’s $433,500 finals of the 2013 Kindergarten Classic Series for 2-year-old trotters at Vernon Downs. Goddess gained a 1:56.3, front-striding victory in Friday’s eighth event, the $206,000 Kindergarten title test for 2-year-old filly trotters, while Southwind Spirit continued his superb season with a bold-striding 1:55 tally in the ninth event, a $217,500 freshman final for male members of the diagonal gait. Goddess, a $110,000 yearling purchase by the Kelly Racing Stable, Joe Sbrocco and William Weaver, III, went to the starting gate as the third wagering choice and was sharp from the start on a rain-soaked track. With Hall of Fame reinsman John Campbell doing the steering for trainer Paul Kelley, Goddess powered through splits of :28.1, :57.2 and 1:26 to defeat second-favorite Yoga by 1-1/4 lengths. It was the fourth season’s score for the bay daughter of Donato Hanover-Macaria Hanover, who has also compiled a second and two thirds, plus earnings of $155,825 after 11 lifetime starts. After Vernon’s 7/8ths-mile oval was downgraded to good for the ninth event, the crowd’s choice Southwind Spirit shrugged off the damp conditions by carving out splits of :28.1, :57.2 and 1:25.1 to thwart third-choice Outburst by 1-3/4 lengths. Yannick Gingras did the teaming for trainer Ron Burke as the bay son of Muscle Hill-Spice On Ice improved his summary line to 6-3-1 after 12 official trips to the track. The $105,000 yearling purchase has returned $310,925 on his investment to the Weaver Bruscemi, LLC, Burke Racing Stable and Stable 45 ownership contingent. In Friday’s second session, a $10,000 Kindergarten Classic consolation clash, Starsaboveallerage also used front-striding tactics to vanquish the favored Skates N Plates by a nose in a 1:57.1 performance. It was the third win, coupled with a trio of thirds-place showings, in nine starts for the bay son of Angus Hall-Starry Eyed, who has banked nearly $30,000 in 2013 for Jeff Gural’s Little E LLC stable. David Miller did the teaming for local trainer Jessica Okusko. Friday’s $12,000 Open trot was won by Grey Ice, with Dan Daley doing the piloting for trainer Guy Howard in race 10. The strong-striding 7-year-old gelding followed the pace-setting Mr. Web Page throughout the mile contest, before leaving the pocket in the stretch and spurting to a nose triumph over the mile cutter. The tight tally was the third locally, the seventh this season and the 23rd all-time for the gray son of the Icepan Cometh-The E Street Pan, who bumped her lifetime winnings to nearly $197,300 for the Howard Stables. Fans were treated to triples by drivers Campbell, (David) Miller and trainer ((Paul) Kelley, as well as a two-win effort by Gingras during Friday’s 12-race program. DOWNS DOINGS—Kelly’s other victories came from trotters The Triple Lindy (1:54.4) in race four and Panamanian Hanover (1:57.2) in event 11. Campbell drove all of Kelley’s first-place finishers… Owner/trainer Tony Schambach’s 7-year-old trotting mare Edit Away earned her first career victory after a 1:57.2 performance for driver Claude Huckabone, III in Friday’s third event…Saturday’s 13-race program, which starts at 6:45 p.m., includes a $12,000 Open pace in race two…Only six live racing dates remain during the track’s 60th anniversary season that continues through Nov. 9…A revised 2013, 88-program racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com. Videos attached by Jim Moran for Vernon Downs  

VERNON, NY—The fleet-footed pacer Sheer Brilliance displayed his superiority for the second straight week while winning Saturday night’s $12,000 Open contest at Vernon Downs. Following up on a 1:50.2 victory in this top-flight class here last Saturday, the favorite Sheer Brilliance was steered to the front at the star of the seventh race by catch-driver Claude Huckabone, III and he remained there through intervals of :26.3, :53.4 and 1:22 over a rain-soaked “good” track. He defeated the second wagering choice, JK Panache, by a head in a 1:50.4 performance. Saturday’s score was the ninth this season and the 43rd all-time for the 6-year-old bay son of Blissful Hall-High Roller Ash, who has earned $503,365 during his productive career. The gritty gelding is owned by trainer Jeffrey Long and J. Paul Long. In Saturday’s 11th event, Bushwacker turned in a bold-striding 1:53.3, front-ending triumph for Jimmy Whittemore that resulted in his first career victory. The eye-opening performance became the fastest mile by a 2-year-old pacing gelding at the 80-program meeting, and it was just 3/5ths-of-a-second off the track’s record for this category that was established by Memory King in 2011. Chris Ryder conditions the bay son of Rocknroll Hanover-Dolphins Can Talk, who is owned by the Henderson Farms. Huckabone, III delivered three tallies during Saturday’s 13-race card as did Whittemore. Driver Chris Lems chalked up his meet-leading 21st driving double of the local campaign. DOWNS DOINGS Whittemore, a three-time Vernon driving champion, increased his win output at the meet to 95 and gained a three-win lead over Roman Lopez in their battle for second place on the current race-winning chart… Trainer Dave Dewhurst picked up a 1:55.2 win from the pacer Dick N Ben in race nine and currently has a 34-32 advantage over Lopez in the chase for second-place in the 2013 conditioning category… The Chris Ryder-trained trotter Well Built also earned his initial pari-mutuel triumph after a 1:56.2 mile in Saturday’s third race…The Downs will offer live racing at 6:45 p.m. Thursday-Saturday next week… On Friday (Oct. 25) Vernon will host the season’s $400,000 (est.) championship finals of the Kindergarten Classic… Only eight racing dates remain during the track’s 60th anniversary season that continues through Nov. 9… A revised 2013, 88-program racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com.  

VERNON, NY—Northern Companion rallied in the homestretch to catch and defeat the pace-setting favorite Sheer Brilliance in Saturday night’s $10,000 Open pace at Vernon Downs. With trainer Robert Hoffman at the controls in Saturday’s featured second race, Northern Companion advanced from fifth in the early going to second entering the final furlong, and then kept digging until he had completed his objective, posting a 1:52.3 win over a rain-soaked “sloppy” track and a head triumph over the fan-favorite. It was the fifth local score, the 10th this season and the 30th all-time for the 5-year-old son of Cambest-Smoke It Out, who is owned by Dorothy Zarza. The hard-earned tally lifted the bay gelding’s lifetime earnings to more than $171,000. Hoffman also finished first with the Leopold Sawyers-owned and trained pacer GPS Legacy in Saturday’s 10th event to secure his second two-win outing at the 68-program meeting. Canadian-horseman John Macdonald delivered three first-place finishes during Saturday’s 13-race program, while driver Claude Huckabone, III, trainer Edgar Clarke and his owners, Robert J. Orr and Gary J. Jonas, also enjoyed two trips to the winner’s circle during the soggy evening. DOWNS DOINGS Driver Jimmy Whittemore guided the Ray Van Dreason-conditioned pacer Moonlight Ranson to a 1:52.2 triumph in Saturday’s seventh session for owners Gus and Alan J. Johnston that produced his 81st win at the meet, and moved the 29-year-old horseman into a second-place tie on the track’s current dash-winning chart with Roman Lopez… Harris Obrien’s 4-year-old trotter Smokin’ Barrie collected his first pari-mutuel victory after Huckabone, III, sitting in for trainer Dennis Lacey, guided the 4-year-old gelding to a 2:01 tally in Saturday’s third event… Vernon will continue to offer live racing Thursday-Saturday next weekend, with first post time at 6:45 each evening… A revised 2013 racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com. Jim Moran

VERNON, NY— Gimme The Loot and driver Robert Krivelin gained a victory in the non-betting C.K.G. Billings Series leg for amateur drivers of trotters; JK Panache and The Triple Lindy captured the top pari-mutuel pace and trot, respectively; Gary P. Clark emerged as the track’s leading provisional pilot, while Jimmy Whittemore posted four first-place finishes for the second straight evening during Saturday’s 14-race program at Vernon Downs. Racing for the first time in 2013, Gimme The Loot logged a 1:59.4 triumph in the Billing contest that took place prior to Saturday’s 65th betting card. The spunky 8-year-old gelding raced at or near the lead throughout and closed from second in the stretch to defeat Northmedo Wine Guy, and driver Matt Zuccarello, by three-quarters of a length. Thomas Di Bartolo conditions the career-winner of $190,948 for owner Alessandro Spano. JK Panache, a two-time track record-setter at the Downs this season, powered his way to a 1:51.3 score in Saturday’s $8,000 seventh race, earning his fifth local tally, seventh season’s score and 15th lifetime victory. Whittemore did the teaming for trainer Dave Dewhurst, an owner of the 4-year-old pacing gelding along with Philip K. Hale. The Triple Lindy became a two-time winner at the meet with a 1:54.1 career-best clocking in the $7,000 10th event. Brian Mattison urged the 5-year-old trotting gelding into the lead entering the final quarter, and the brown son of Credit Winner held on to secure his 11th lifetime victory for owner and trainer Paul Kelley and his partners Stephen G. Michaels, Jim Winske and William B. Weaver, III. Part-owner Clark (with Fay E. Clark) steered the 4-year-old pacing mare New York Kitty to a 1:54.1 triumph in Saturday’s $4,000 eighth event that gave the 46-year-old horseman a 3-2 lead over Josh Kinney and Justin Huckabone in this year’s provisional drivers’ derby at the track. Whittemore, a three-time former Vernon dash-winning champion, enjoyed his fifth four-win outing of the track’s 60th anniversary season, while hiking his three night victory total for the weekend to nine. The 29-year-old teamster currently sits third on this season’s race-winning chart with 77 first-place finishes. Leading driver (117 wins) and trainer (46 tallies) Rick Plano won two races during Saturday’s pari-mutuel card, as did Mattison, Kelley and driver/trainer Claude Huckabone, III. DOWNS DOINGS—The Downs will continue its Thursday-Saturday live racing schedule next week, with first post time at 6:45 p.m…A revised 2013 racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com. Jim Moran

VERNON, NY—The favorite Maud Blue Chip continued her winning ways with a career-best 1:58 performance in a division of Thursday night’s $109,124 New York Sires Stakes feature for 2-year-old filly trotters at Vernon Downs. Competing against eight eager rivals over a rain-affected good track in Thursday’s ninth race, Maud Blue Chip rallied from fourth at the half to become a challenging second entering the final quarter. With Tyler Buter doing the teaming for trainer Chuck Sylvester, the steady-striding brown filly turned on the speed in the stretch and defeated Market Rally by 1-3/4 lengths. It was the Third Straight NYSS score, and the fourth win (coupled with a pair of third-place finishes) in six starts for the quick-footed daughter of Credit Winner-Queen of the Moor, who increased her winnings to $126,639 for owners Melvin Hartman, David H. Mc Duffee and Jeff Gural’s Little E LLC stable. Thursday’s other NYSS winner was Exotic Form, a representative of the Dan Dailey Stable entry, who also closed late to post a 1:58.2 lifetime-fastest tally in the sixth session. Claude Huckabone, III was at the controls for Daley as the opportunistic bay filly overtook the favorite, Gammy’s Girl, in the final furlong and secured a three-quarter length score, her second NYSS win in succession and third (coupled with a second-place finish and a third) in seven official outings. The fast and fit daughter of Malabar Man-Form Fitting increased her earnings to $103,045 for the Winbak Farm. Thursday’s 12-race program also included three divisions of a $38,200 Excelsior Series contest for state-bred frosh-filly high-steppers. The winners were Ski To The Max (Conway Hall-Enjoy The Sun) in 1:59.3 for driver and trainer Gates Brunet and the Theodore Gewertz, Y. Jean Brunet and Deborah Brunet ownership contingent; Emiliana (Cash Hall-Monalisa Can) in 1:59.3 with Chris Long teaming for trainer Jim Graham and owner Lisa Wyatt, and Holly’s Lightning (Conway Hall-Indigo Sakra) in 2:00.2 for driver/trainer Sam Schillaci and owner Greg Martin. The crowd’s choice Billmar Scooter, making just her second local appearance, delivered a 1:51.2 triumph in Thursday’s $10,000 second race, the week’s Open distaff pace. The hard-hitting 8-year-old mare rallied from fourth in the final quarter to defeat Love You Bye, last week’s victor in this class, by two lengths. It was the fifth current victory and 38th all-time for the bay daughter of Keystone Raider-Its Scooter Time, who is owned by driver Tyler Buter, trained by Amber Buter and owned by the Oldford Farms. In addition to Tyler Buter’s driving double, reinsman Chris Lems collected his meet-leading 19th two-win credit during the track’s 63rd program of 2013. DOWNS DOINGS The Peter Carney-conditioned trotter Rattle On (2:02.1) and Holly’s Lightning (2:00.2) each earned their first pari-mutuel victories during Thursday’s card… The Downs will present a 10-race program starting at 6:45 on Friday night… A revised 2013 racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com. Jim Moran  

The streaking trotter Whispur became the sixth four-time winning equine of the season at Vernon Downs following a 1:57 harness racing triumph in Friday night's $4,500 sixth event.

The productive harness racing pacer Diamond Stick Pin was a repeat winner in Saturday night's $9,500 Open feature at Vernon Downs.

The veteran harness racing trotter Scorpion Moon earned his 79th career victory with a 2:00 triumph in Friday night's $8,000 featured eighth race at Vernon Downs.

Gym Tan Laundry turned in a track record performance, while Vic Smith, Maven, American Saint and Bridge The Way continued to pay dividends to their harness racing owners during Friday night's $50,000 leg of the Kindergarten Classic (KC) Series for 2-year-old trotters at Vernon Downs.

The trotter Yankee Manny continued to display winning form in a 1:55.1 harness racing performance during Friday night's $10,000 featured seventh race at Vernon Downs.

New York Sires Stakes notables I'm The Answer, Surface Tension and Some Girls were among the divisional winners in Thursday night's $290,128 harness racing co-features for Empire State-breds at Vernon Downs.

Autumn Escapade lowered the track record for older trotting mares to 1:53.2 with her gate-to-wire harness racing victory in Friday night's $25,000 leg of the Miss Versatility Series at Vernon Downs.

The harness racing favorite Harlem Rockturne lived up to her advanced billing with a front-striding 1:53.2 triumph in Thursday night's $10,000 featured sixth race at Vernon Downs.

The track record for 3-year-old pacing geldings was equaled and, later, bettered during Saturday night's (August 27) $147,867 New York Sires Stake harness racing action at Vernon Downs. In race seven, Mojo Terror tied the 1:50.4 standard for sophomore altered side-wheelers that had been set by Getting Personal in 1993, before Fantaddy improved it with his 1:50.2 performance three races later.

Odd-distance track record performances by Lightning Prince and Ivanhoe Diamant, plus an Open pace victory by Forty Carrots were highlights of Saturday night's 10-race harness racing card at Vernon Downs.

The Saratoga shipper H And M's Hit displayed the most lick in the lane while winning Friday night's harness racing $10,000 featured ninth race at Vernon Downs with a career-best 1:55.3 clocking.

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