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This photo was taken by Hall of Fame Communicator Carol Cramer at Virgil Morgan's new "Winners Circle Training Center" ..just south of Scioto Downs... A massive breath of fresh air...wonderful facility...many things still under construction but what a super place to train and stable...(and yes, take photos...)  These two trotting youngster are sired by Dontyouforgetit (Scott Mogan in red) and Uncle Peter (Danny Collins on the inside) as they were coming to the finish.  From Carol Cramer    

LEBANON, OH. - Twilight Bonfire, who has rapidly become a fan favorite at Miami Valley Raceway, became harness racing's newest millionaire Saturday night capturing the $16,500 Open Handicap Pace after a thrilling stretch duel. Driver Dan Noble changed tactics in Twilight Bonfire's seventh local start by leaving the gate alertly and dictating all the fractions. A lukewarm favorite in a stellar field, the five-year-old stud horse by The Panderosa reached the quarter mile marker in :26.3, then throttled down to a :56.1 half before the challengers began to form an outer flow. Masters Champion (Kyle Ater) was first to lap on the pacesetter with Neat (Jeff Nisonger) and Mykindachip (Kayne Kauffman) swinging wider yet at the 1:23.4 three-quarter station. Atta Boy Dan (Chris Page), fresh off three straight Preferred company victories at The Meadows, swung four-wide at the head of the stretch and the cavalry charge was on to the wire. In the end, Twilight Bonfire held off all challengers in 1:52.1 despite the fact that two of his adversaries had stuck their heads in front of him midway through the final turn. Atta Boy Dan got up for second with Neat pacing strong between horses to finish a very tight third. Owned by Robert Key and trained by Danny Collins, Twilight Bonfire's winning bounty moved his career earnings to $1,003,070. The homebred has won 15 of his 66 lifetime starts and sports a three-year-old record of 1:50.1. Gregg Keidel

LEBANON, OH. - Twilight Bonfire captured the $15,500 Open Handicap pace at Miami Valley Raceway on Saturday night, inching within $6000 of becoming a million dollar earner for owner-breeder Robert J. Key. The five-year-old stud horse by The Panderosa has made the most of his 64 career starts, winning 14 of them and banking $994,060. This score was the second in three tries in local open company with the first being a track-record equaling 1:51.1 effort the last day of January. Twilight Bonfire swept past a host of horses in the stretch for driver Dan Noble collaring runnerup Gareth Nourrir (Josh Sutton) and show finisher Speed Trap (Chris Page) in the final strides of the 1:53 mile. Danny Collins conditions the winner who will join the exclusive 'Millionaires Club' with his next victory. The second leg of the 'Sovereign Warrior' series for top conditioned pacers was contested in two $9000 divisions. Ideal Race (Chris Page) captured the first division in 1:52.4 besting ER Zach Attack (Tyler Smith) and Winchester's Punch (Randy Tharps). With a win and a second, the Ron Burke-trained winner is the likely morning line favorite for the $18,000 championship next Saturday night. Ohio-sired Feel N Funk E (Andy Shetler) copped the second division with a 1:53.1 triumph over Ally-Con (Greg Grismore) and Lady's Man (Josh Sutton). George Anthrop trains the winner who could become a $100,000 earner with a score in the series final. Through 35 nights of the current 89-night meet, Miami Valley's average daily handle is up a healthy 22% over the inaugural season's numbers. Gregg Keidel  

LEBANON, OH. - Twilight Bonfire didn't just capture the $14,500 Open Pace at Miami Valley on Saturday night (January 31), but he tied the all-time all-age harness racing track record in 1:51.1 on a wintry night in southwest Ohio. Driver Dan Noble allowed favorites Ice Scraper (Josh Sutton) and Mykindachip (Kayne Kauffman) to mix it up through brisk opening panels of :25.4 and :54.1. Still sitting seventh at the 1:22.3 third quarter station Noble began to wind the winner through traffic in the stretch, eventually splitting tiring horses and pulling away by a 1-1/2 length margin. Mykindachip held for second with longshot J's Six Pak Attack (Jeremy Smith) putting in a strong effort to finish third. It was just the 13th career win for the five-year-old son of The Panderosa, but boosted his lifetime earnings to just shy of $1 million--$986,295 to be exact. Owner Robert Key sent Twilight Bonfire to Ohio-based trainer Danny Collins in mid-November and he has responded with five on-the-board finishes in six tries, including three wins. The final "Claim To Fame" series championship was also decided on Saturday night as the nine top $12,500 claiming pacers went postward chasing a $20,000 final purse. It was anybody's race at the three-quarter pole, but when the smoke cleared it was Master Stroke (Josh Sutton) with the most late pace, topping Kyron (Chris Page) and Winchester's Punch (Dan Noble) in 1:53.2. The nine-year-old altered son of Art Major couldn't find racing room until very late in last week's final preliminary leg, but closed with a fury to finish second a half-length back. In the final, Sutton faced the same predicament until finding room to swing four-wide down the homestretch and sprinting past the others in convincing fashion. Barry Langley trains Master Stroke for owner Keith Pippi. It was the 34th victory in a lengthy and rewarding career and pushed the winner's lifetime bounty past $450,000. Miami Valley Raceway will present the only live harness racing in the United States on Super Bowl Sunday with a 3:00 PM post time. The 12-race program should conclude about a half an hour prior to the Patriots-Seahawks kickoff. Gregg Keidel    

WASHINGTON, PA, Aug. 13, 2014 -- Momas Got A Gun grabbed the lead with a backside burst and found the wire just in time to score in 1:55, fastest division in Wednesday's $120,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series stake for freshman filly pacers at The Meadows. The event was contested over six divisions, with Dobre Povedane, Cover Model, Half Past Seven, Hillary's Style and Hot Chica Boomba also taking $20,000 splits. Tony Hall (Half Past Seven, Hillary's Style) and Aaron Merriman (Dobre Povedane, Hot Chica Boomba) each fashioned a stake double. Momas Got A Gun hadn't been on the front in either of her two previous starts, but she moved quickly to the top for Jason Brewer and opened a daylight lead. While that margin diminished rapidly as she tired, she held off Alexa Said, who rallied from last, by a nose. Chaxiraxi Hanover was third. "I was hoping the wire was coming pretty soon," Brewer said. "She was getting tired -- we went a big third quarter. Her last line at Pocono looked pretty good, so I figured to try and give her a chance." Virgil Morgan, Jr. trains the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Benear for Geoffrey Martin. Hillary's Style overcame a brutal trip -- parked out the first quarter, first over from fourth -- to down Mayela Hanover by a neck in 1:55.3, with Dew It Again third. Did winning trainer Danny Collins think the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Style could prevail after such a rugged journey? "No. She was all over the racetrack and sideways here and there," Collins said. "She showed a little bit of guts in the lane. I've been babying her a little bit. I considered putting her in the sires stakes but decided we needed to make sure we were in the final of the stallion series." Lisa Ezzo campaigns Hillary's Style, a $35,000 yearling purchase who captured her Third Straight in the stallion series. Although it wasn't necessarily his game plan, Merriman gunned Dobre Povedane to the lead from the rail, where she was good enough to hold off the pocket-sitting Terror Ain't A Fool by 3/4 lengths in 1:55.2. Terracotta Hanover earned show. "No one really left," Merriman said. "The only horse I wanted to follow was Terror Ain't A Fool. If someone else made the front, I would've made a quarter-pole move. She waited on them a little bit, and I was a little concerned because she made a break on the front last week. I got her attention, and she won easily." Casie Coleman conditions the daughter of Well Said-Vysoke Tatry for West Wins Stable and Adriano Sorella. In the $18,000 Preferred Handicap Trot, Daylon Miracle was dismissed at 8-1 as one of only two mares in the field, but she moved smartly first over for Merriman and owner/trainer Bill Bercury and scored in 1:53.2 over Major Athens and Cowgirl Hall. The 5-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur-Daylon Marvel extended her career bankroll to $374,227. Merriman drove five winners on the 16-race card while Mike Wilder and Hall each enjoyed a three-bagger. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday when the program features the Meadow Cheer, a $223,960 PA Sires Stake for 2-year-old filly pacers. First post is 6:55 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

Angel Of Terror posted the fastest winning time among the winners in Stallion Series harness racing action on Tuesday night at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. There were six $20,000 divisions of the Stallion Series held for 2-year-old pacing fillies. Angel Of Terror (Western Terror-Angel Falls), driven by Jason Brewer and trained by Brian Brown, won her split in 1:54:2. Other Stallion Series winners on the night were: Icapella Hanover (Somebeachsomewhere-I'm Sassy), driven and trained by Joe Pavia Jr., in 1:55:2. Angel Plus (Quik Pulse Mindale-Crew Angel), driven by Scott Zeron and trained by Steve Cook, in 1:55:3. Terror Ain't A Fool (Western Terror-Aint A Fool OK), driven by Corey Callahan and trained by Douglas Lewis, in 1:55:2 Serious Filly (Somebeachsomewhere-Seriously), driven by Tim Tetrick and trained by Brian Brown, in 1:55:3. Hillary's Style (Somebeachsomewhere-Style), driven by David Miller and trained by Danny Collins, in 1:54:2. Jim Beviglia    

  Ohio Sires Stakes and Opens highlight the Friday night card at Scioto Downs Friday. The two and three year old fillies in their respective divisions went post ward for their share of the $40,000 purse. There were nine total divisions for the trotting and pacing fillies and many favorites prevailed. The Sire Stake action kicked off in race one on the 14-race card with two-year old pacing fillies. A field of eight went behind the wings, including the 1-9 favorite, Bell Flower. Bell Flower showed her talent and dominated the field in 1:55.3. She's a daughter of Fly Fly Buckeye and Our Lady Countess. She's trained and partially owned by Fred Huff Jr and John Fairchild. Coming off her impressive qualifier of 1:54.4, she didn't disappoint her supporters. Chris Page had the lines and started from post two. The pair left for command and were the uncontested pace setters. Page clicked fractions of 27.1, 57, 1:26.1 and cruised to a four and three quarter length victory. Zoey's Lemon Tart and Aaron Merriman closed for second and Medoland Kendolin was third. The second race on the program featured a field of seven two-year old trotting fillies. Student Of Life for trainer and driver Marty Wollam prevailed in an impressive 1:58.3. Student Of Life is by Full Count out Lynn's Slider. She's owned by Acadia Farms Inc and G&B Racing of Ohio. The filly started from post three and that's were they got away. The heavy favorite, Bet On Chip and Chris Page for trainer, Devan Miller set the fractions of 29.2, 58.2 and 1:27.4. Giving Sammy Star and Aaron Merriman a perfect pocket trip, but it wasn't enough to fend off the late brush of Student Of Life. Bet On Chip was second and Sammy star was third. Only a neck separated these three fillies. The third race was a mild upset in the three year old trotting fillies first division. Sandys Victory and Josh Sutton rallied in 1:57.2. Sandys Victory is the daughter of Victory Sam and Amessageforsandy. She's conditioned by Larry Tinch who also owns with John E Reames. The filly started from post eight in the field of eight and was the post time second choice. In The Grippers was the 3-5 favorite and she started from post one. Page used the inside to his advantage and clocked favorable fractions of 28.3, 59 and 1:27.4 with In The Grippers. He had company going to the three quarters in the form of Sandys Victory. The filly wrestled the lead away in the stretch and trotted on to a one and a quarter length victory. Majesty Dream and Kayne Kauffman rallied for place and In The Grippers completed the trifecta. Three year old filly pacer Crown Time Keeper kept her stellar season going with a career best effort of 1:54. Crown Time Keeper and driver Chris Page were the post time favorite at 2-5 and rightfully so. The three year old filly by Feelin Friskie out of Crowntime Noreturn is trained by Steve Carter for owner and breeder, Esther Crownover. The filly didn't have her usually front end spot, but it didn't derail her. The fractions of 28 and 56.2 flushed her and she started her first over grind. Crown Time Keeper hit the three quarters in 1:24.1 and finally cleared the game, Lady Julie in the stretch and paced clear by two lengths. Lady Julie for trainer Jim Dailey was a solid second and God Only Knows was a closing third. Novascotia Hanover and Aaron Merriman collar the $25,000 Filly and Mare Open pace in 1:51.3. A full field of 10 went behind the gate. Novascotia Hanover started from post three and used her lucky draw to her advantage. The four year old mare by Somebeachsomewhere out of Northern Sky received a perfect pocket trip behind the heavy favorite, Continual Velocity. She set the fractions of 27, 54.2 and 1:22.3 with the steady pressure from a parked, Betterluvnexttime and Ronnie Wrenn Jr. Novascotia Hanover had some left in the tank when Merriman showed her racetrack and she responded by her one length victory over Continual Velocity and Better Think Twice for trainer Danny Collins who was a fast closing third. Karlee Sue and Josh Sutton took the second division of the two year old filly pace in 1:56. The daughter of Feelin Friskie is trained and partially owned by Al Tomlinson along with Dennis Stolz and Daniel Mitchell. Sutton and Karlee Sue stole the fractions of 28.3, 59.1 and 1:27 and fended off a strong rally by Friskie Lil Devil who was second and Hailstorm Grace for trainer Tom Blankenship was third. Its Complicated and Josh Sutton wired the field in the $25,000 Open Trot in 1:53.4. This win gives Its Complicated five wins in his last six starts. The four year old gelding by Sj's Caviar out of Before The Rain is trained by Brent Davis for breeder and owner Hatfield Stables. The upset minded Turbochargedroxie rallies in a division of the three year old filly trot in 2:00.4. The steady rain that continued to fall quickly turned the fast track into a sloppy one. The filly by Cayenne Turbo was driven by Danny Noble for trainer Danny Collins for owners, Joyce McClelland, DM Stables Llc, Dean Davis and William Rufenacht. She drew post nine in the field nine, but she had some luck and talent on her side. Getting away seventh in the full field as the heavy favorite, Anniesbluejeanbaby set the fractions of 29.3, 1:00.4 and 1:30.2.  Noble was unhurried in the early going and he finally started making his bid at the three quarters, but it was more than enough time. The filly caught Jim Lupton's, Dellou by a head and Anniesbluejeanbaby was a tiring third. Heavy favorite Paydaze On The Way and Josh Sutton got the job done in1:56 in her division of Sires Stakes. Paydaze On The Way is a three year old daughter by Look Sharp out of Shantytown Girl. She's trained by nation leading trainer Ron Burke for Howard Taylor,Edwin Gold,Richard Lombardo and Karen Rose Greg Grismore and A P P Panda was placed second and Shakin Friskie was second placed third for going inside the pylons in the last quarter. The final two divisions of the two year old filly trot rounded out the evening and the favorites prevailed. Lisa Jane for trainer Scott Cox and Driver Ryan Stahl took her division in 2:03.3. The filly by Neely Dunn is owned by Parent Racing Stable Llc and G.Peters of Ohio. After mild fractions of 30,1:02.1 and1:33, set by Talissa and Jonas Hershberger, Stahl angled the filly out and got her underway from the back. Lisa Jane swallowed up race track and beat Song Of The Valley by a neck. Bettys Sam was third. Sunrise Nibbles dominated her division for driver Chris Page and trainer, Chris Beaver. The two year old trotting filly by Iron Duke is owned by Chris Beaver, Synerco Ventures Inc, Steven Zeehandelar and David Lang. The perfect filly went to the front and never turned back. She drew clear by three and a half lengths from Dolly Dunn for trainer Brian Brown and Honey B for trainer Dan Ater took the show spot. From Scioto Downs Racino

In The Grippers started her 2014 harness racing season just as she finished her 2013 season by dominating her Ohio Sires Stakes rivals. Friday at Miami Valley driver Chris Page sent the big trotting filly to the front at the start of her $40,000 OSS split and she led at every post. The 2-5 favorite won by 5-1/4 lengths in 1:58.4 over Anniesbluejeanbaby and Mclean. Herres Stable LCC owns the daughter of Steven One, who is trained by Virgil Morgan. It was her first start of the year after several qualifiers. Two races later, Page and Morgan scored another victory in a $40,000 OSS split when Fayco Filly sat behind God Only Knows for much of the mile and then zoomed past the pacesetter to score a ¾-length win in 1:56. APP Panda got the runner-up money while Lady Julie finished third. God Only knows faded to finish fourth. Fayco Filly scored her first win of the season in a trio of tries. The winning pacing filly paid $7.40 to win and is owned by Marital Property LLC. Crown Time Keeper kept her 2014 slate perfect with her third win in as many tries. The odds-on filly overtook the early leader Friskie's Angel to post a two length win in 1:56.2 for driver Chris Page and trainer Steve Carter. The OSS winner was bred and is owned by Esther Crownover, a longtime patron of harness racing in Ohio. Crown Time Keeper had previously won the elimination and final of the James K. Hackett Memorial Pace at Miami Valley. Turbochargedroxie stepped to the front of the pack in her trotting split for driver Dan Noble and they went on to score an easy 3-1/4 length win over Sandys Victory and Emery Jean. Danny Collins trains the Cayenne Turbo trotting filly for Joyce McClelland, DM Stables LLC, Dean Davis, and William Rufenacht. As the heavy favorite, Turbochargedroxie paid $2.20 and tripped the timer in 1:59.3. She's now got a first and second in second races this year. Dean A. Hoffman for the Ohio State Racing Commission  

Last season's dominant Ohio freshman trotting filly In The Grippers gets her 2014 campaign underway at Miami Valley Raceway on Friday night as the 2014 Ohio Sires Stakes season begins with five divisions of 3-year-old fillies. All Ohio Sires Stakes races will carry a $40,000 purse. In The Grippers is the 8-5 favorite in the fourth race and will have Chris Page in the bike for trainer Virgil Morgan, Jr. Last year she won $157,494 while winning six of her eight starts. She took her 1:58f mark winning the Ohio Sires Stakes championship at Scioto in September. She is coming off three qualifying races at Miami Valley Raceway, including a recent 1:58.3 clocking. Second choice in this OSS split is Anniesbluejeanbaby who was timed in 1:57.4 in her first start at Northfield Park. Driver Page and trainer Morgan will have another strong contender in race six on Friday for 3-year-old pacing fillies in Fayco Filly, a top star in OSS action last season. She drew the inside post position while her chief rival Rosy Fire will start from post eight. Fayco Filly was parked through a brutal opening half-mile in the James K. Hackett Memorial at Miami Valley and should get an easier trip starting from the inside. Rosy Fire was an impressive 1:57f winner in a recent qualifier at Miami Valley. Turbochargedroxie will be trotting up a storm for trainer Danny Collins in race eight and Dan Noble is slated to be in the bike. In her only start of the season, she rallied from far from the pace to finish second, timed in 2:00.2, at Miami Valley. A great duel between Crown Time Keeper and Paydaze On The Way shapes up in race 10 as the two pacing soph lasses are off to a great start this season. They finished 1-2 in the Hackett Memorial with Crown Time Keeper getting the edge. Paydaze On The Way is from the powerful Ron Burke Stable and Kayne Kauffman is slated to drive while Chris Page will handle the lines on Crown Time Keeper, who is unbeaten in a pair of starts this season for trainer Steve Carter. Rose Run Princess, a game and talented trotting filly, looms the favorite in the 12th race of the evening and final OSS event. She will be steered by Mike Wilder for trainer Devan Miller. Last year Rose Run Princess earned $116,722 with four wins and four seconds in nine starts. Ohio Sires Stakes action continues at Miami Valley on Saturday night when the sophomore colts and geldings do battle. by Dean Hoffman, for the Ohio Racing Commission

LEBANON, OH. - Holiday Shopper regained her winning ways on Sunday night at Miami Valley Raceway...and did it in style! The classy seven-year-old daughter of Camluck set an all-age track record for females when she sped to an impressive 1:52.1 triumph in the weekly $9500 open mares feature. Driver Jason Brewer got the winner away fourth from the inside post position in the field of eight, moved into second-over position approaching the half, cleared to the front just past the three-quarters and widened to a 4-3/4 length margin of victory through the stretch. It was the fourth win in eight tries in the top distaff event at Miami Valley this inaugural season and extended her 2014 bankroll to $21,825 at the current two-month old meet. Holiday Shopper is owned by Drs. Robert and Randall Van Hutchison and trained by Jeff Brewer. Whisty's Paradise (Randy Tharps) finished second with She's Shocking (Kayne Kauffman) picking up the show dough. Drivers Greg Grismore and Kyle Ater each scored triples on the program. Grismore scored with Tea Pot Hanover and Lucky Amy, a pair of Doug Hinklin trainees, as well as Babe's Chip, who captured the Mares Open II pace in 1:53.3 for trainer Brian Stephens. Ater's victories came for three different trainers: Danny Collins' trotter Jailhouse Tuff, his father Dan Ater's Ocean Pearl, and Harry Groves' Howdoyoulikeitnow in the nightcap. Miami Valley will race a make-up card tonight (Monday, April 7) with a 6:30 p.m. post time. From the Miami Valley Publicity Department

The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association is pleased to announce that it will be featuring a new event, a Night Of Champions, at The Meadows Racetrack & Casino on Friday, January 31. Post time for the card will be 6:55PM, marking the first evening card of the 2014 season. "Hosting" the event will be a true champion, multi-millionaire Foiled Again. The star pacer will not only be available for a "meet and greet" in the winners circle at 6:30, but several lucky fans will receive the chance of a lifetime - to ride around the track behind Foiled Again. Fans hoping to get a jog cart ride from Foiled Again will need to arrive early, as names will be drawn at 6:45, ten minutes prior to the first race of the night. The owners of Foiled Again will also be giving away free hats, and New Vocations Standardbred Adoption agency will be offering "We Can't All Be Foiled Again" T-shirts to commemorate the evening. Horses that earned MSOA Horse of the Year awards for their age and gait will also be honored throughout the night with presentations in the winners circle between races. Twilight Bonfire, owned by Bob Key, will be honored as the MSOA's 2013 Horse of the Year. Twilight Bonfire was trained throughout much of 2013 by Danny Collins, and is wintering in the local barn of Rich Gillock. Each divisional award winner from last season will have a race named in their honor and owners of those horses are invited to a special gathering in Delvin's banquet room in the Racebook area. Fans will also have an opportunity to share in the success of harness racing's top training outfit, the Ron Burke Stable, which won a record 1,090 races in 2013. Fans can turn their losing tickets into a big payday on Night of Champions, as they enter a Second Chance Drawing which will have a $2,180 prize...$2 for every race that the Burke Stable won. The cash prize is sponsored by Burke Racing LLC, the MSOA, and The Meadows Racetrack & Casino. The MSOA's prize wheel will also be back that night, giving fans a chance to "Spin To Win" various items, and free hot dogs will also be given away. January 31's Night of Champions is the lone night card during the month. From January through March, the track will host live racing on the final Friday of the month, post time 6:55. by Jeff Zidek for MSOA  

The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association announces the winners of its 2013 Horse Awards, as voted by the group's members.   2YO COLT PACER: El Chivato - William Spotti, owner. Trainer - Jason Shaw.   2YO FILLY PACER: That Woman Hanover - Dan Altmeyer, Richard Kelson, Jack Piatt II, Jeff Altmeyer, owners. Trainer - Dan Altmeyer.   2YO COLT TROTTER: Sarcastic Man - Robert Key, owner. Trainer - Rich Gillock.   2YO FILLY TROTTER: Static Electricity - Mason Shaw, owner. Trainer - Jason Shaw.   3YO COLT PACER: Twilight Bonfire - Robert Key, owner. Trainer - Danny Collins.   3YO FILLY PACER: Charisma Hanover - Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, owners. Trainer - Ron Burke.   3YO COLT TROTTER: Picture This - Leonard Buckner, owner. Trainer - Charlie Norris.   3YO FILLY TROTTER: Promisemethis - Rick & Regina Beinhauer, owners. Trainer - Rick Beinhauer.   OLDER HORSE/GELDING PACER: Visible Gold - Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, RTC Stables, owners. Trainer - Ron Burke.   OLDER MARE PACER: Do Me Honor - William Bercury, owner/trainer.   OLDER HORSE/GELDING TROTTER: TSM Photo Bugger - Theodore Tomson, owner. Trainer - Jan Fread.   OLDER MARE TROTTER: Unefoisdansmavie - Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Jack Piatt III, owners. Trainer - Ron Burke.   MSOA TROTTER OF THE YEAR: TSM PHOTO BUGGER MSOA PACER OF THE YEAR: DO ME HONOR MSOA HORSE OF THE YEAR: TWILIGHT BONFIRE   The MSOA congratulates all of this year's winners and wishes everyone continued success in 2014.   by Jeff Zidek for MSOA  

Soul Train Cruises In $56,576 Ohio Breeders Championship for 2 Year-Old Colt Trotters With a patient drive from Chris Page, Soul Train cruised to a 7 1/2 length victory in the opening division of the 2 year-old colt trot during Tuesday action at the Delaware County Fair. As the Greg Coon starting gate released the field of six, Mark Headworth sent Happy Go Jamie out of post 2 and went after the early lead. The eventual winner was content to sit fourth through the opening half in 1:01 3/5. When Soul Train was given his orders he quickly took command down the backstretch and never looked back, stopping the timer in 2:00 3/5. Star Chip (Don McKirgan) was second and Fiftyshades Of Nay (David Miller) was third. Soul Train is owned by Parent Racing Stable, R. S. Crynick and J. E. Novak and trained by Scott Cox. In the second division Hooray For Willie went gate to wire to score in 1:58 3/5, a new lifetime mark. The freshman son of Master Lavec is owned by Winchester Baye Acres, Inc. of Ocala, FL and trained by the winning driver Kurt Sugg. Can'tcutthatchip (Dan Noble) and Mainstreet Willy (Chip Noble) rounded out the top three finishers. Millers Team Up To Win OBC 2FT Hall of Fame driver David Miller teamed up with his daughter trainer Devan Miller to score a victory with Rose Run Princess in the second division of Ohio Breeders Championship for 2 year-old filly trotters. The daughter of Trainforthefuture was sent after the early lead set the fractions of :29 4/5, 1:01 2/5 and 1:31 3/5 and cruised home to score a five length victory over Emilene's Future (Ray Paver) in 2:00 3/5. The winner is owned by James E. Keller of New Carlisle, OH and Jerry Allen Bell of Tipp City, OH. The heavily favored In The Grippers (Chris Page) broke at the start and was never a factor. In the first $25,388 division Hush Hush Chip (Chris Page) defeated Emery Jean (Chip Noble) in 2:02 4/5. The freshman daughter of Chip Chip Hooray won for the first time this season for trainer Danny Collins and the ownership team of Lewis, Taylor, Gold and Lombardo.   Jay Wolf

Mach It So was a last-minute addition to the Little Brown Jug field, but trainer Nifty Norman thinks the gelding fits in nicely among the 19 horses entered in Thursday's pacing classic. Held at the Delaware County Fair in central Ohio, the $552,551 Little Brown Jug is the second jewel in the Pacing Triple Crown and requires a horse to win twice to be declared the champion. The top three finishers from three elimination heats advance to the second heat. If a first-round winner also wins the second heat, he is declared the winner. If another horse wins, then a four-horse race-off is held to determine the winner. The last race-off was in 2000, when Astreos defeated Gallo Blue Chip, George Scooter and Profita. Mach It So, who has won eight of 12 races this year and earned $336,751 for owner Bamond Racing, is in the second of the three first-heat divisions. He will start from post two with driver Scott Zeron and is the 4-1 second choice on the morning line, behind Lucan Hanover from the stable of trainer Casie Coleman. Incidentally, the 24-year-old Zeron last year became the youngest driver to win the Jug, with Coleman-trained Michael's Power. "He's a good little horse," Norman said about Mach It So. "He won't get embarrassed. I think he fits in there pretty good. It helps when you draw inside like that. He's not the best horse in there, but I think he's good enough to get in the final and good enough to get a check in the final. "You need a lot of luck in that race, it doesn't matter how good a horse you've got. The best horse doesn't always win." Jeffrey Bamond and his son Jeffrey Jr. purchased Mach It So in a private sale last September. Mach It So, a son of Mach Three-Beach Dancer, is a half-brother to 2009 Woodrow Wilson Pace winner Windfall Blue Chip. Originally, the connections were going to skip the Little Brown Jug, but reconsidered when it was announced that top contenders Captaintreacherous and Sunshine Beach would bypass the race. Captaintreacherous, the defending Pacer of the Year who has won seven of eight races this year, captured the first jewel in the Triple Crown, the Cane Pace, on Sept. 2. Mach It So is the leader in points in the Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series for 3-year-old male pacers, where he is 4-for-4 this season, and Norman wanted the horse to race prior to the Sept. 28 Super Final. "We weren't intending on going, but then a couple (horses) dropped out - like Captaintreacherous and Sunshine Beach - and the owners like to go to the race, so I said let's go," Norman said. "We've got to race him somewhere, so we might as well race him for $500,000." In his most recent start, Sept. 7, Mach It So was fourth in a division of the Simcoe Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack. Mach It So was in last place on the final turn, more than nine lengths from the front, but came home in :26 to finish three lengths from winner Fool Me Once. "He was really good," Norman said. "He just got a little bit held up, his cover wasn't that great, but the horse himself was very good. He finished up really strong." Norman doesn't anticipate Mach It So having difficulty getting around Delaware's half-mile oval. On Aug. 28 in a sire stakes event, Mach It So won at half-mile Grand River Raceway in a track-record 1:51.4. "He can get away from the gate good when you want him to," Norman said. "I think he'll be fine." by Ken Weingartner for HRC RIGHT TOUCH HOPES TO FEEL RIGHT AT HOME Delaware, Ohio, is almost home for 3-year-old pacer Right Touch. The gelded son of Always A Virgin-Touch Of Bogart was born and raised just 45 minutes east of the track, in Mount Vernon, Ohio, at the farm of his breeder and co-owner, Carolyn Brechler, and the family's Knox Services Inc. Right Touch has post four in the first of three Little Brown preliminary heats at odds of 6-1. He's coming off two straight wins, including a career-best 1:50.1 in the $200,000 Indiana Sire Stakes championship at Hoosier Park on Sept. 11, after four consecutive second-place efforts. He has five wins in 12 starts this year and career earnings of $448,404, made primarily in Indiana-bred company. Vegas Vacation, trained by Casie Coleman, is the 2-1 favorite in his Jug heat, followed by Jimmy Takter's Rockin Amadeus, who won last year's Breeders Crown for 2-year-old male pacers. "We'll find out Thursday if he's up to it, but we're all Buckeyes that own him so that's something you always look forward to - the Jug," said trainer Ray Paver, a Columbus native who is part of the ownership group, along with Circleville's John Rhoads Jr. "We don't know if we'll ever have another chance to get to it, so we might as well put him in." Paver says Right Touch's strengths include his diverse racing style. "You can really race him any way, but he's actually better coming off cover," Paver said. "He explodes coming out of a hole so I'm hoping he has one of those :25.4 quarters (his last quarter in a second-place finish at Hoosier on Aug. 21) on Thursday. "He races any way you can, it doesn't matter to him if he's on the front or coming from behind or first up. He likes looking at a horse, so I just play it by ear and see what happens when the gate folds." Paver will have to be on the lookout for what other horses do in the race, but beforehand, it's a different type of horse power he'll have to be alert for. "He doesn't like tractors," Paver said. "He goes to the outside fence and wants to buck and kick by them." $58,939 First Elimination HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line 1. Eddie Sweat-Dan Noble-Edward Zubkoff, Jr.-20-1 2. Lonewolf Currier-Dave Palone-Kevin McDermott-4-1 3. Rockin Amadeus-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5-2 4. Right Touch-Ray Paver-Ray Paver-6-1 5. Vegas Vacation-Brian Sears-Casie Coleman-2-1 6. Wake Up Peter-Ron Pierce-Tony Alagna-8-1 $58,939 Second Elimination HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line 1. Ilikeitrealhot-Matt Kakaley-Ron Potter-15-1 2. Mach It So-Scott Zeron-Nifty Norman-4-1 3. Emeritus Maximus-Tim Tetrick-Tony Alagna-8-1 4. Lucan Hanover-David Miller-Casie Coleman-5-2 5. Beach Memories-David Miller-Brian Brown-6-1 6. Word Power-Jody Jamieson-Larry Remmen-5-1 7. Urbanite Hanover-Tim Tetrick-John Williamson-12-1 $58,939 Third Elimination HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line 1. Twilight Bonfire-John Campbell-Danny Collins-5-2 2. Resistance Futile-Andy Miller-Blair Burgess-10-1 3. Sunfire Blue Chip-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-2-1 4. Johny Rock-Andy Miller-John Butenschoen-4-1 5. Odds On Equuleus-Tim Tetrick-Tony Alagna-8-1 6. Only The Lonely-Matt Kakaley-Nick Surick-15-1 by Ellen Harvey for HRC  

Delaware, OH --- A field of 19 sophomore pacers have dropped into the box for the $552,551 Little Brown Jug, the second leg of Pacing's Triple Crown, set for Thursday (Sept. 19) at the Delaware County Fair.   Casie Coleman, who conditioned last year's Jug champion, Michael's Power, will be looking to make it two straight at Delaware when she sends Vegas Vacation and Lucan Hanover behind the gate on Thursday. The last trainer to win back-to-back Jugs is Tom Artandi who won with BJ Scoot in 1988 and Goalie Jeff in 1989.   Vegas Vacation is the top ranked horse in the latest "Road to the Little Brown Jug" and comes to Delaware off a Simcoe Stakes record of 1:48.3 for 3-year-old pacing males on Saturday (Sept. 7) at Mohawk. The bay colt also captured the $257,250 Empire Breeders Classic at Tioga in August and was second in both the $500,000 Max Hempt and the $450,000 Adios.   Trained by Coleman for owners Adriano Sorella, Anthony Beaton, Phyllis Saunders and West Wins Stable, Vegas Vacation has won eight of 23 lifetime starts, with $646,516 in career earnings. The son of Bettor's Delight-Don't You Smile has a 7-3-1 record from 13 starts this season, with earnings of $549,905. He has drawn post position five in the first elimination for driver Brian Sears and has been listed as the 2-1 morning line favorite.   Coleman's other Jug starter will be Lucan Hanover, a son of stallion Western Ideal out of the mare Lauren Order. He is owned by West Wins Stable and Christine Calhoun. Lucan Hanover has won six of his 12 season's starts, with earnings of $214,919. He is seven for 16 lifetime, with a bankroll of $232,284.   Lucan Hanover had won three of his first 10 career races before Coleman put him in the Summertime Pacing Series at Mohawk Racetrack. He swept two preliminary legs and the final as a precursor to his lifetime-best 1:48.3 win from post eight in the $250,000 New Jersey Classic at Meadowlands Racetrack, his biggest win to date. In his last start, Lucan Hanover was third in a Simcoe contest at Mohawk. He is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the second elimination and will score from the four hole for driver David Miller.   "Everything is going great," said Coleman of her two Jug starters. "I trained both of them yesterday (Friday) and they are real good. After I jog them tomorrow (Sunday), we are shipping to Delaware.   "The draw was good; with six- and seven-horse fields you can't draw the eight."   Adios champion Sunfire Blue Chip will be among the other leading contenders in Thursday's Jug. The Jimmy Takter trainee has won six of 12 starts this year and earned $448,255. The son of American Ideal-Shot Togo Bluechip is owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, Brixton Medical AB and RAW Equine.   One of two Takter trainees in the field (the other being Rockin Amadeus), Sunfire Blue Chip will start from post three in the third elimination for driver Yannick Gingras and is the morning line choice at 2-1.   The top three horses in each of the elimination races will advance to the $265,224 second heat. If an elimination winner scores in the second heat, he will be the Jug winner. Otherwise, the four heat-winners will return for a $110,510 race-off.   The exact race numbers and post times for the LBJ will be announced after the balance of the Thursday program is drawn on Monday.   For more information on the Grand Circuit racing, please visit www.littlebrownjug.com.   Below is the field for the $552,551 Little Brown Jug, in post position order, with drivers, trainers and morning line odds.   $58,939 First Elimination   HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line   1. Eddie Sweat-Dan Noble-Edward Zubkoff, Jr.-20-1   2. Lonewolf Currier-Dave Palone-Kevin McDermott-4-1   3. Rockin Amadeus-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5-2   4. Right Touch-Ray Paver-Ray Paver-6-1   5. Vegas Vacation-Brian Sears-Casie Coleman-2-1   6. Wake Up Peter-Ron Pierce-Tony Alagna-8-1   $58,939 Second Elimination   HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line   1. Ilikeitrealhot-Matt Kakaley-Ron Potter-15-1   2. Mach It So-Scott Zeron-Nifty Norman-4-1   3. Emeritus Maximus-Tim Tetrick-Tony Alagna-8-1   4. Lucan Hanover-David Miller-Casie Coleman-5-2   5. Beach Memories-David Miller-Brian Brown-6-1   6. Word Power-Jody Jamieson-Larry Remmen-5-1   7. Urbanite Hanover-Tim Tetrick-John Williamson-12-1   $58,939 Third Elimination   HN-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Line   1. Twilight Bonfire-John Campbell-Danny Collins-5-2   2. Resistance Futile-Andy Miller-Blair Burgess-10-1   3. Sunfire Blue Chip-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-2-1   4. Johny Rock-Andy Miller-John Butenschoen-4-1   5. Odds On Equuleus-Tim Tetrick-Tony Alagna-8-1   6. Only The Lonely-Matt Kakaley-Nick Surick-15-1   by Paul Ramlow for The Grand Circuit  

This week's celebrity sections come from a Dave Briggs. Briggs is the publisher and editor for the Canadian Sportsman magazine. He was presented the Harness Tracks of America's Dan Patch Award for exceptional media, publicity and public relations contributions to the sport of harness racing earlier this year. Little Brown Jug Top 10 Contenders By Dave Briggs - Canadian Sportsman 1. Vegas Vacation inherits top spot after winning the Simcoe and the connections of Captaintreacherous elected not to race in Delaware. Can trainer Casie Coleman win back-to-back Jugs? 2. Sunshine Beach was a solid second to Vegas Vacation for trainer Mark Steacy and has a 1:47.4 mark set a month ago beating Captaintreacherous in the Battle of Brandywine. 3. Sunfire Blue Chip has been a consistent money-maker all year for trainer Jimmy Takter and topped Vegas Vacation in the Adios on July 27. 4. Lucan Hanover, Casie Coleman's other horse, won the New Jersey Classic on Hambletonian Day and has been a solid producer all year. 5. Word Power was just a neck behind Captaintreacherous in the Cane Pace and the Larry Remmen trainee has cashed a check in all but one start this year. 6. Twilight Bonfire was second to Captaintreacherous in the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup in June and the Danny Collins pupil has cashed a cheque in six of the seven starts since. 7. Johny Rock has been a solid performer his last five starts for trainer John Butenschoen. 8. Wake Up Peter is, perhaps, the best winless sophomore pacing colt on the continent. Though a little on the inconsistent side, when he is on, he's near the front-runners. 9. Emeritus Maximus is a sizable longshot, yet the Alagna trainee has been on the board nine times this year in 14 starts against stakes competition and sports a 1:48.4 mile at Pocono. 10. Lonewolf Currier has won a third of his starts, but has been either on or out of it too much to be a serious Jug threat. 1. Vegas Vacation (Last Week #2) Owners: West Wins Stable (ONT), Adriano Sorella (ONT), Anthony Beaton (ONT) & Phyllis Saunders (ONT) Trainer: Casie Coleman Driver: Brian Sears & Scott Zeron Career Earnings: $646,516 Career Mark: 1:48.3 TgDn He won the $114,948 Simcoe Stakes (9/7) at Mohawk Raceway in 1:48.3, equaling his lifetime best. 2. Sunfire Blue Chip (Last Week #5) Owners: Christina Talker (NJ), John & Jim Fielding (ONT), Brixton Medical AB (SWE) and RAW Equine Inc. (ONT) Trainer: Jimmy Takter Driver: Yannick Gingras Career Earnings: $476,819 Career Mark: 1:48.3 Mea The son of American Ideal was third in the Simcoe Stakes on September 7. 3. Sunshine Beach (Last Week #6) Owners: Hudson Standardbred Stable (QUE), Conrad Leber (QUE) and Diane Bertrand (ALB) Trainer: Mark Steacy Driver: Chris Christoforou, Jr./George Brennan Career Earnings: $531,565 Career Mark: 1:47.4 PcD He was second to Vegas Vacation in the Simcoe at Mohawk Raceway (9/7). 4. Johny Rock (Last Week #8) Owners: William C. Wiswell (WI), Jean A. Goehlen (IL) and Eugene W. Schick (IL) Trainer: John Butenschoen Driver: Andy Miller Career Earnings: $387,498 Career Mark: 1:48.0 PcD He set a new lifetime mark with a 1:48 win at Pocono Downs (9/7) in a conditioned event. 5. Lucan Hanover (Last Week #NR) Owners: West Win Stable (ONT) and Christine Calhoun (ONT) Trainer: Casie Coleman Driver: David Miller Career Earnings: $232,284 Career Mark: 1:48.3 M Finished third in a $114,948 division of the Simcoe Stakes (9/7). 6. Twilight Bonfire (Last Week #7) Owners: Robert J. Key (PA) Trainer: Danny Collins Driver: David Miller Career Earnings: $681,489 Career Mark: 1:50.1 Mea Took the fifth spot in the Cane Pace Final at Tioga Downs (9/2). 7. Wake Up Peter (Last Week #3) Owners: Wake Up Peter Partners (IL), Brittany Farms (KY), Louis Willinger (KY) and Eagles Soar Partners (NY) Trainer: Tony Alagna Driver: Ron Pierce Career Earnings: $532,680 Career Mark: Q1:50.0 M The son of Rocknroll Hanover has yet to win in 2013. He could set Jug history with a win. 8. Word Power (Last Week #9) Owner: Bradley Grant (ONT) Trainer: Larry Remmen Driver: Jody Jamieson Career Earnings: $225,802 Career Mark: 1:49.4 M He was just a nose short of an upset of Captaintreacherous in the Cane Pace Final. 9. Odds On Equuleus (Last Week #NR) Owners: Odds On Racing (IL) Trainer: Tony Alagna Driver: John Campbell Career Earnings: $622,801 Career Mark: 1:50.0 M Recently moved to the Tony Alagna Barn. He only has a couple of weeks to straighten him out. 10. Lonewolf Currier (Last Week #10) Owners: Francis Azur (PA) Trainer: Kevin McDermott Driver: John Campbell/Jason Bartlett Career Earnings: $274,495 Career Mark: 1:48.4 Mea Did not race last week. By Jay Wolf – Little Brown Jug Publicity Director  

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