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WASHINGTON, PA, Dec. 10, 2019 -- Enoch quarter-poled to the front and easily held off the late challenge of his stablemate, Latest Desire, to capture Tuesday's opening-leg harness racing division of a holiday series at The Meadows for $20,000 claiming horse and gelding pacers. Mississippi Rabbit took the other $12,000 split. The Meadows currently is hosting six Holiday Claiming Series; all begin this week, and all conclude with Dec. 30 championship legs that carry estimated purses between $15,000 and $20,000. Dave Palone let the dust settle before moving Enoch, and the 6-year-old Panspacificflight-Kieanna's Angel had little trouble from there, downing Latest Desire by 3/4 lengths in 1:54.1 over a "good" surface. Big Dutch finished third. Trainer Ron Burke enjoyed the exacta sweep while Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Phillip Collura and Frank Baldachino registered the owners' win. Tuesday's card also featured the opening leg of a holiday series for $10,000 claiming horses and geldings, with the splits going to Nathan Feelsgood and Nobettorplacetobe. Tony Hall piloted four winners and Aaron Merriman three on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday, when the program features an $89,374.07 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Dec. 6, 2019 -- K Ryan Bluechip changed tactics but not results as he captured his third straight harness racing triumph in Friday's $18,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. While he contested the lead in his earlier wins, K Ryan Bluechip dropped in third from the gate and unleashed his big brush down the backside. He cleared the leader, Bettor Than Spring, and went on to score for Dave Palone in 1:51.2 over a "good" surface. Bettor Than Spring saved place, beaten 2 lengths, with Rock Candy third. Mike Palone trains K Ryan Bluechip, a 7-year-old Art Major-Fool That I Am gelding who now boasts $524,905 in career earnings, for J.R. Ryan, Stephen Ronay, Lone Wolf Stable and Collin Ryan. Trainer Ron Burke enjoyed a four-bagger on the 12-race card while Mike Wilder and Palone each fashioned a triple. With his Friday haul, Wilder finished the four-day race week with a total of 17 wins. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday when the program features an $81,095.21 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Dec. 5, 2019 — Fueled by yet another carryover, The Super Hi-5 jackpot at The Meadows is approaching $80,000. The jackpot for Friday’s Super Hi-5 stands at $78,784.94. The Meadows offers the wager on the final race of each live card. On the racing front, K Ryan Bluechip seeks his third straight victory in the $18,000 Open Handicap Pace. The 7-year-old Art Major-Fool That I Am gelding leaves from post 5, race 1, with Dave Palone aboard for trainer Mike Palone and owners J.R. Ryan, Stephen Ronay, Lone Wolf Stable and Collin Ryan. First post Friday is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Dec. 4, 2019 -- Perlucky drifted out down the backside but quickly recovered and crushed the field by 8-1/4 lengths in Wednesday's harness racing feature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Conditioned Trot. Making his Meadows debut, Perlucky quarter-poled to the front but appeared to have trouble with the sloppy surface past the half. Once Dave Palone straightened him, the 4-year-old Lucky Chucky-Paper Girl gelding poured it on and triumphed in 1:55.1. Gee Wizz George and Rising MVP completed the ticket. Ron Burke trains Perlucky, who lifted his career bankroll to $330,909, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Phillip Collura. For the second consecutive card, the red-hot Mike Wilder collected five wins, giving him 14 over the last three programs. Palone also enjoyed a big day with a triple on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday when the program features a $78,784.94 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 12-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 29, 2019 -- K Ryan Bluechip overcame post 8 to capture his second straight harness racing victory in Friday's $20,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. K Ryan Bluechip was away third, but when Dave Palone sent him toward the front at the quarter, Do Work Son and Jim Pantaleano stretched him out, provoking an unexpectedly arduous journey to the point. Nevertheless, K Ryan Bluechip held off Do Work Son in the lane, downing him by 1/2 length in 1:50.4. Bettor Than Spring finished third. Mike Palone trains the winner, a 7-year-old Art Major -Fool That I Am gelding who now boasts $515,905 in career earnings, for J.R. Ryan, Stephen Ronay, Lone Wolf Stable and Collin Ryan. Jim Pantaleano, Mike Wilder and Dave Palone each piloted three winners on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday, when the program features a $62,961.59 carryover in the final-race Super Hi 5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 27, 2019 -- Delcrest Holiday extended his harness racing winning streak to three when he shot the Lightning Lane to capture Wednesday's co-feature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Conditioned Trot. Delcrest Holiday let Deweyknowigotit do all the heavy lifting on the front end, but when Dave Palone pointed him to the sloppy Lightning Lane, the 4-year-old Holiday Road-Northern Kitti gelding poured through to down Deweyknowigotit by a neck in 1:56. You're Majestic finished third. Ron Burke trains Delcrest Holiday, who lifted his career bankroll to $125,457, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. In Wednesday's co-feature, also a $13,500 Conditioned Trot, Dawson Springs moved determinedly first over to score in 1:56.1 and give trainer Scott Betts his third win on the 13-race card. Jim Pantaleano, who also fashioned a three-bagger, was aboard for owners Tim Betts and Stephen Moss. The 4-year-old Cantab Hall-Hot Springs gelding now boasts lifetime earnings of $165,251. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday when the program features a $59,505.94 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 20, 2019 -- Delcrest Holiday stalked the race leader from the pocket, then poured through the Lightning Lane to capture his second straight harness racing victory in Wednesday's feature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Conditioned Trot. Delcrest Holiday grabbed the early lead for Dave Palone but released Rising MVP in favor of the pocket. When Palone pointed him inside, Delcrest Holiday surged past Rising MVP to down him by 1/2 length in 1:54.4, with Deweyknowigotit third. Ron Burke trains the winner, a 4-year-old Holiday Road-Northern Kitti gelding who extended his lifetime bankroll to $118,707, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Aaron Merriman and trainer Trent Stohler teamed for a pair of victories on the 12-race card while Dan Rawlings, Mike Wilder and Palone each enjoyed a double. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday, when the program features a $46,535.23 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 19, 2019 -- Already harness racing's "winningest" driver, Dave Palone took another historic step into uncharted territory Tuesday at The Meadows when he collected career victory 19,000. The milestone mile came with Southwind Warsaw in race 10. By way of comparison, Russell Baze, the all-time wins leader in Thoroughbred racing, notched 12,842 victories. Palone was met in the winners' circle by his mother, Jean; his wife, Bethann; his daughters Hanna, Alana and Sophie; his brother Mike Palone, a longtime Meadows-based trainer who, appropriately enough, was the conditioner of Southwind Warsaw; Kim Hankins, executive director of the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA), and other family, friends and fans. As the historic event neared, Palone indicated he could feel his emotions rising. "It really hasn't hit me yet," he said. "Everybody's been getting excited about it, and that's getting me kind of excited. It's been fun." Palone, who began driving in 1982, has achieved a career full of highlights that have rewritten the sport's record books. On July 5, 2012, he scored career win 15,181 to break Herve Filion's longstanding North American record -- and was greeted in the winners' circle by the gracious Filion. On Nov. 14, 2014, he became the "winningest" driver on the planet when career victory 16,754 vaulted him past Germany's Heinz Wewering, who sent a pre-recorded congratulatory message. He was inducted into the Harness Hall of Fame on July 4, 2010. If he wraps up the 2019 driving title at The Meadows -- he's comfortably ahead -- it will be his 30th consecutive season as the track's top dog. At 57, Palone has begun to cut back some. Of his more than 73,000 career starts, 2,827 came in 2008, his most prolific season. (That year also marked his highest single-season UDR, .446). In 2019, he's logged 1,614 starts as of mid-November. "I don't envy those guys who bounce around two tracks every day," he says. "I'm enjoying things a lot more not driving full cards. It's more important for me right now to be at my kids' events. There comes a time when you have to decide which way you want to go. When you get to my point in life, family is more important." Earlier in his career, Palone dabbled in training; he has 34 wins in 100 training starts, but his most recent start as a trainer occurred in 2000. He doesn't see himself transitioning to full-time training but can envision a day where he's involved. "At some point, I'd like to help a trainer by working with babies. Trainers work way too hard for me. They're working with their horses seven days a week; I'm putting in two minutes. For all the work trainers are putting in, they deserve my best effort." For now, he plans to enjoy following the career of Hanna, who works as a caretaker for Ron Burke -- "it's special seeing her passion for horses" -- and drive for as long as he can. "I keep driving, I show up for work every day, and I'm grateful for the opportunity. I enjoy racing horses as much as I ever did and want to keep at it, but Father Time is undefeated." Make it 17 wins this year for Touchamatic Touchamatic collected her 17th win this year when she outkicked Camera Lady and captured Tuesday’s $20,000 Filly & Mare Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Touchamatic stalked Camera Lady from the pocket, and when Aaron Merriman angled her outside for the drive, she was the stronger mare, downing Camera Lady by a neck in 1:52.3. Dark Force finished third. Bill Bercury trains Touchamatic, a 5-year-old daughter of American Ideal-Perfect Touch who now boasts $417,622 in career earnings, for Renee Bercury. It was one of three wins for Merriman on the 13-race card. Dave Palone also enjoyed a triple, including career win 19,000. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday, when the program features a $44,179.75 carryover in the final-race Super Hi 5 as well as a $912.18 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). First post for the 12-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association                  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 18, 2019 -- Dave Palone drove a single winner Monday at The Meadows to lift his career total to 18,998. He'll have plenty of chances to reach the 19,000 milestone Tuesday, with 12 assignments scheduled on the 13-race card. Meanwhile, the jackpot for the Super Hi-5 grew to $40,921.13. The wager is offered on the final race of each live card. Tuesday's program also features a $5,000 total-pool guarantee in the Pick 4 (races 3-6). Nearly lost in the excitement over Palone's quest and the Super Hi-5 was the big day achieved by Jim Pantaleano, who collected five wins on the program. In Monday's feature, a $20,000 Open Handicap Trot, Final Breath attacked the leader, Donatover, down the backside and passed him into the final turn, downing him by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:53.4. Early leader Supergirl Riley finished third. Tony Hall piloted Final Breath, a 9-year-old Victory Sam-First Breath gelding who now boasts $569,098 in career earnings, for trainer Norm Parker and owner Duane Lowe. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 17, 2019 -- Dave Palone, harness racing's "winningest" driver, is approaching another historic milestone as the race week begins at The Meadows. With 18,997 career victories, he needs three wins to reach 19,000 -- heady territory, indeed. By way of comparison, Russell Baze, the all-time wins leader in Thoroughbred racing, notched 12,842 victories. Palone is scheduled for nine drives on the 13-race card, which begins at 1:05 PM. Palone, 57, began driving in 1982 and has amassed a number of unique accomplishments. Among his career highlights: He was inducted into the Harness Hall of Fame on July 4, 2010. On July 5, 2012, he scored career win 15,181 to break Herve Filion's longstanding North American record. On Nov. 14, 2014, he became the "winningest" driver on the planet when career victory 16,754 vaulted him past Germany's Heinz Wewering. If he wraps up the 2019 driving title at The Meadows -- he's comfortably ahead -- it will be his 30th consecutive season as the track's top dog. Along the way, Palone has earned more than $144 million in purses. Meanwhile, Monday's program also will provide plenty of excitement on the wagering front, as the jackpot in the final-race Super Hi-5 has grown to $37,849.43. For the Super Hi-5, which is offered with every live card, the jackpot is paid only if there is a sole correct ticket. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 8, 2019 -- Windsong Leo continued his domination of The Meadows elite harness racing pacers with a front-end victory -- his second in a row and 12th this year -- in Friday's $18,000 Open Handicap Pace. Windsong Leo sprang to the lead from post 6 for Dave Palone. Despite a demanding 26.3 opening quarter, the 7-year-old Jereme's Jet-Windsong Goldie gelding had little trouble scoring in 1:50.1, 1-1/2 lengths ahead of than Bettor Than Spring. K Ryan Bluechiip completed the ticket. Ron Burke train's Windsong Leo, who triumphed for the 32nd time over the past two seasons and lifted his career bankroll to $549,860, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Phillip Collura. Trainer Ron Burke fashioned a five-bagger on the 13-race card while Mike Wilder and Palone each piloted four winners. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday, when the program offers a trio of rich wagering opportunities: a $27,532.80 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5; a $5,000 total-pool guarantee in the Pick 4 (races 3-6); a $767.78 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). The Veterans Day card also features a tribute to America's servicemen and servicewomen highlighted by a match race pitting veterans of the U.S. Army, the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Coast Guard. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 1, 2019 -- An era will end Saturday when Roger Huston, "The Voice" of The Meadows for the last 44 years, calls his final harness racing card at the track (first post 1:05 PM). At 77, Huston is cutting back his workload. He'll still call the Little Brown Jug, which he's done since 1968, and he'll announce races at a number of county fairs. But his day-to-day presence will be reduced. And what a presence it has been. Not only has Huston called more than 188,000 races in his career, but he's also been an effective ambassador and champion for harness racing, attracting many new fans to the sport through his distinctive calls and enthusiasm. Fittingly, the Hall of Famer has accepted a position as ambassador for the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association, returning to his Ohio roots. He seldom refuses an assignment, calling races throughout North America and journeying to Dublin each year to announce Ireland's premier event, the Vincent Delaney Memorial. But a race needn't be high profile to lure him; he once called a homespun Pittsburgh affair known as "The Undie 500," which featured humans, possibly inebriated, racing in their skivvies. That one may not make his career highlights list, but all who heard his call remember it. Huston is prolific to be sure, yet he also brings to his work a Cosellian quality, rare among announcers, that infuses even the most humble event with importance. When he calls a race, it's historic -- and we're thrilled to become part of that history. Now, on the eve of his final call at The Meadows, horsemen are offering tributes and remembrances. Some are veteran Ohio and western Pennsylvania horsemen. Others are winners of the Jug or the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids. A few are both. If you've never been on your feet, you better get up now to join these horsemen in thanking Roger Huston and celebrating his career. * * * * * "We're not just losing a man; we're losing an icon He's the SportsCenter, the Chris Berman of harness racing. His knowledge and dedication to something that he loves are unsurpassed. I've always looked forward to Roger's announcing every day, to his thunder and his fire. The statistics he compiles are instrumental to the game. With today's technology, I hope there's a group that will keep that going." -- Aaron Merriman, four-time national driving champion who's co-located at The Meadows and Ohio tracks * * * * * "He's the reason my dad took me to the races for the 1976 Adios. I had no background in horses, no interest in horses, but when I heard Roger calling the stretch duel between Armbro Ranger and Keystone Ore, I was hooked. I thought, I'd like for that guy to scream my name. He's been my No. 1 supporter, even introducing me at my Hall of Fame induction. When I won the Jug with P-Forty Seven (2005), he was the happiest guy in the winners' circle -- tears running down his face, big hug. That meant a lot. It will be weird driving races and not hearing him." -- Dave Palone, harness racing's all-time "winningest" driver * * * * * "When I was 17, I skipped school to go to the Jug. I had no pass, no parking -- the Jug barn wasn't even built then. So I'm walking up the road, and I hear Roger holler, 'They're going to the gate.' It made my hair stand on end. He makes the whole experience more special. In 2017, I had three horses at The Meadows for Emerald Highlands Farm on Adios Day. We won the Adios with Fear The Dragon, we won an Adioo Volo division, and we won an Arden Downs split. Roger couldn't let that go: 'Three in a row at The Meadows!' That put the cherry on top." -- Brian Brown, Delaware, Ohio-based trainer * * * * * "I've known Roger just about my whole life. I remember first meeting him when I was 8 at the Ashland County Fair and later hearing him call the Jug. He really loves harness racing; you can tell by the way he calls the races. Things won't be the same without him. After I won my first Jug with No Pan Intended (2003), I told Roger, 'I'm glad it was you who called my first Jug win.'" -- Hall of Famer David Miller, five-time Jug winner and former member of The Meadows drivers colony. * * * * * "Roger is Meadows racing as far as I'm concerned, and I'm lucky enough to call him my friend. It's truly a loss for The Meadows. At the same time, I'm happy for him taking on his new role in Ohio. He's had a tremendous impact on the sport and on me personally. When I watch replays and hear him screaming my name, it makes my job fun." -- Mike Wilder, Ohio native and longtime driver at The Meadows * * * * * "On behalf of all our horsemen, I want to thank Roger. He's been harness racing's No. 1 fan, and we really appreciate all his hard work in promoting racing. He's in the Hall of Fame for a reason." -- Kim Hankins, executive director, Meadows Standardbred Owners Association * * * * * "I'm from Ohio, and my first harness racing experience was listening to Roger's calls at the Jug. That was the most exciting thing. We moved to western Pennsylvania even before Roger arrived at The Meadows; I remember having dinner at his house when we were kids. It was great to have an announcer of his stature at The Meadows; just his being here brought us publicity. That's been important for all our careers. What he's brought to our sport is unfathomable." -- Norm Parker, The Meadows-based trainer * * * * * "I've actually been thinking quite a bit about his departure. I'm trying to appreciate hearing him now, because when he's gone, people will really miss him. My father grew up in Pittsburgh and, I assume, went to The Meadows in the '70s. Roger was the announcer then, so to me, he connects my generation to my dad's generation. Something feels good about that, knowing I'm listening to the same announcer. I don't know what it will be like here when he's gone, but it certainly will be different. Roger is as much a part of The Meadows as anyone or anything ever." -- Mark Weaver of Weaver Bruscemi LLC, who treasures Huston's calls of his two Jug wins (Limelight Beach in 2014, Filibuster Hanover in 2017) and his 2018 Adios title with Dorsoduro Hanover. Super Hi-5 Jackpot at $15,025.63 The jackpot for the final-race Super Hi-5 at The Meadows has grown again. Friday's Super Hi-5 offers a carryover of $15,025.63. First post for the 12-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 29, 2019 -- Harness racing trotter Donatover grabbed the lead with a quarter-pole move and was unthreatened thereafter in capturing Tuesday's $20,000 Open 1 Handicap Trot at The Meadows. Donatover was away third when Dave Palone sent him after Final Breath on the point. The 4-year-old Donato Hanover-Anonyme Hanover easily repelled the challenge of Pass The Vape and downed him by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:52.4. Final Breath saved show. Tim Twaddle trains Donatover, who extended his career earnings to $192,588, for Micki Rae Stables. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday, when the card features a $13,091.61 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 12-race program is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 21, 2019 -- Party At The Banks matched the harness racing track record of 1:52.3 for older mares as she moved powerfully first over and drew off late in Monday's $20,000 Open 1 Handicap Trot at The Meadows. One of two mares in the field, Party At The Banks found a seat fourth from post 8 before Dave Palone sent her on her way. The 5-year-old daughter of Break The Bank K-Beach Party As quickly overpowered the leader, Whats The Word, and defeated Donatover by 4-1/2 lengths. Barn Girl, the other mare in the race, earned show. The time equaled the mark established by Cowgirl Hall in 2014. Ron Burke trains Party At The Banks, who lifted her career bankroll to $312,173, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Mike Wilder piloted five winners on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Tuesday when the program features a $4,578.35 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 12, 2019 -- Harness racing pacer K Ryan Bluechip zipped to the lead from post 5 and never had an anxious moment as he rolled to victory in Saturday's $18,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Although the track was listed "good," K Ryan Bluechip reeled off a sharp 1:50.3 mile for driver Dave Palone, trainer Mike Palone and owners Steven Ronay, Collin Ryan, Lone Wolf Stable and J.R. Ryan. Carolina Beach stalked the winner from the pocket but had to settle for place, beaten 1-1/4 lengths, for the fifth consecutive start. Summer Travel completed the ticket. K Ryan Bluechip, a 7-year-old Art Major-Fool That I Am gelding, extended his career bankroll to $487,845. Aaron Merriman, Dave Palone, Jim Pantaleano, Mike Wilder and trainer Ron Burke each fashioned a double on the 12-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday when the program features a $990.65 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association                              

WASHINGTON, PA, Aug. 31, 2019 -- Bluebird Recon let Summer Travel do the heavy lifting, then blew by him in the lane to spring a 14-1 harness racing upset in Saturday's $20,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Although Summer Travel reached the point from post 8, he needed a 26.3 opening panel to get there. He was strong enough to discourage any backside challengers but could not hold off the pocket-sitting Bluebird Recon, who roared past for Ronnie Wrenn, Jr. and downed Summer Travel by three-quarter lengths in 1:51.2. Macadoodledoo completed the ticket. Ron Burke trains the 4-year-old Net Ten Eom-Colette gelding, who vaulted over $100,000 in career earnings, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Dave Palone and Burke each fashioned a four-bagger on the 13-race card while Tony Hall enjoyed a triple. After a Labor Day break, live racing at The Meadows resumes Tuesday, first post 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

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