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The Sunday evening harness racing program at Running Aces was highlighted by the $10,000 Open Handicap Pace for Horses & Geldings, and once again it did not disappoint as the talented field of seven put on an exciting show, and after the dust cleared at the wire, Firedrake had etched his name into the history books with a track record setting victory.   Firedrake, the 4 year old pacing gelding sensation by Dragon Again, has posted a fantastic campaign at Running Aces in 2017, he was nearly undefeated in his first 8 races (save a disqualification early in the season), and he became the Champion in the $35,000 Dan Patch Free For All Pace (1:52.1) in July. Now, he has added a track record to his impressive 4 year old resume.   In tonight's contest, Trainer/Driver Nick Roland sent Firedrake fast off the gate from post 6, utilizing his early speed to take the first call and lead, before yielding to rival BestinTheBusiness (James Yoder) who was looking to build on a 3 race winning streak. BestintheBusiness cleared from post 7 just past the fast 26.4 quarter-pole clocking, and led through the middle panels of 56.1 and 1:23.2, though was nosed for the lead, and pressured in a strong first-over attack by Lodi Machette Man (Steve Wiseman).   Lodi Machette Man was still at the throat-latch of BestIntheBusiness as they turned for the money, and JDS Brent N Sheree was launching 3-wide, but Firedrake was waiting in the garden seat that he had secured early on, and Nick Roland turned on the turbo boosters through the inside lane with Firedrake, who rallied past his tough rivals to get the victory. The tally is his 9th of the season, and a lifetime best 1:51.2 mile that eclipsed the previous track mark from 2013 (Tyber Tyke, Nick Roland 1:51.3).   Firedrake ($5.60) has now won 15 of his 30 lifetime races, and has bankrolled $69,404. He is owned by Jessica Johnson.   The $13,000 Minnesota-Sired 3 year old Trot event also went to post on Sunday, and Imapixieatmidnight ($6.60) did not disappoint her faithfull backers as she posted a flawless mile for her 5th win of the season. Trainer/Driver Nick Roland guided her away from the gate in the pocket position from post four, and took command of affairs just past the five-eighths checkpoint, with enough in the tank to hold off a late challenge from It's Stormin Money (Steve Wiseman). The victory by 1/2 length in 2:00.2 equaled the lifetime best for the filly by Sos Lunar Eclipse, who now shows 9 lifetime wins and $79,677 in earnings for owners Set The Pace Racing, LLC.   Nick Roland led all drivers on Sunday night with a driving double on the card.   Live Racing continues at Running Aces, 3 nights a week, through September 16.     By Darin Gagne, Running Aces Track Announcer

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, July 29, 2017--There's valor, there's discretion and there's Evenin' of Pleasure (George Brennan, $3.40). Harness racing horse and driver took the latter tact Saturday night (July 29th), winning Yonkers Raceway's $55,000 Open Handicap Pace. In play from same post position No. 6 he conquered in last week's marquee pace, odds-on Evenin' of Pleasure was again wide leaving. This time, however, instead of being hung out in the hinterlands, he deferred, taking a seat as the floor show unfolded in front of him. Western Dynasty (Greg Merton), Dynamic Youth (Carl Cito Jr.) and Great Vintage (Eric Goodell) mixed it up early, as in a :26.3 opening quarter-mile. Great Vintage won the early scrum, with Evenin' of Pleasure settling fifth and staying there through the :55.3 intermission. He then moved to chase a first-up Texican N (Jordan Stratton) as that one advanced toward a 1:24 three-quarters. Great Vintage owned a length lead into the lane, but he was done. Evenin' of Pleasure rolled from second-over, winning by a length-and-a-half in 1:52.3. Sharp shipper Hickory Icon (Mark MacDonald) closed from third-over into second in his first local appearance since last fall. Dynamic Youth, Western Dynasty and Texican N rounding out the payees. Great Vintage backpedaled to last among the octet. For Evenin' of Pleasure, a 7-year-old son of Dragon Again owned by Gestion J Y Blais and trained by Ron Burke, it was his third win in nine '17 tries. The exacta paid $29, with the triple returning $165. Yonkers offers up the third of eight consecutive Sunday matinees (July 30th), with a first post of 11:30 AM. Frank Drucker

WASHINGTON, PA, July 29, 1017 -- Fear The Dragon, harness racing's top-rated horse, cemented that position Saturday at The Meadows when he wore down the sport's No. 2-ranked horse, Huntsville, with a prolonged, dramatic first-over move that brought him victory in the $400,000 final of the 51st Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids.   Heavy rains that had soaked The Meadows for the better part of two days stopped shortly before the card began, yielding to sunny, cool weather and a fast track for the highly anticipated battle of No. 1 and No. 2. Early on, it appeared that drama might not develop as Huntsville and Tim Tetrick, got an easier lead than most observers anticipated, including Fear The Dragon's trainer, Brian Brown.   "I was really worried out of the gate once Huntsville cleared to the lead that easy," Brown said.   Fear The Dragon was fifth down the backside when David Miller felt compelled to put the son of Dragon Again-Armbro Cinnamon into the race. "I probably moved him a little earlier than I had to, but he was gapping a little too much," Miller said. Fear The Dragon steadily erased the 5-length deficit until the final turn, when it briefly seemed he had hit the wall. "At the head of the stretch, I thought Huntsville had us put away," Brown said. "Dragon never gives up. He fought back." But Fear The Dragon spurted again and caught Huntsville in the shadow of the wire, downing him by 1/2 length in 1:49.1, with RJP third. "Going into the turn, I asked him to go, and he wasn't getting it done," Miller said. "He made it up in the stretch." Tetrick, indicated he thought he had enough horse left to hold off Fear The Dragon. "I thought I had him beat," Tetrick said. "My horse grabbed the left line a little bit, but he raced well and had every opportunity to win. Hats off to Fear The Dragon." Ray Schnittker, who trains Meadowlands Pace winner Huntsville and owns with Ted Gewertz, Steven Arnold and Crawford Farms, accepted the tough beat graciously. "Huntsville raced real good," he said. "Brian's horse came first over and kind of wore him down. I thought we had it, but he got nailed. It was a good race. I'd be crazy not to be disappointed, but he raced really well. You can't ask more than that."   It was the first Adios victory for Brown, the third for Miller, who won previously with Shadow Play (2008) and McWicked (2014). Brown said Fear The Dragon would be pointed to the Carl Milstein at Northfield while Schnittker indicated Huntsville would race next week in the Cane Pace at the Meadowlands.   ADIOS NOTES: With the win, Fear The Dragon became a millionaire, boosting his career bankroll to $1,152,844 . . . It was a huge Adios Day for Bruce Trogdon's Emerald Highlands Farm, breeder and owner of Fear The Dragon. Two other Emerald Highlands homebreds, Blazin Britches and Whatstroublinurocky, also won Grand Circuit stakes on the card. "It was the day of a lifetime," Trogdon said . . . Ella Christina earned the day's long shot honors when she pulled a 56-1 upset in a division of the Quinton Patterson Adioo Volo . . . Adios Day attendance was 4,113.   The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

The Sunday evening program of harness racing at Running Aces featured the $35,000 Dan Patch Free For All Pace, and the event drew a talented field of 7 contenders who had collectively earned more than $2.1 million and won 187 races in their respective careeers.   The contest would wind up being dominated by the horse who came into the race with perhaps the least credentials in purses and wins, but perhaps one of the biggest hearts of all in the field.   Firedrake ($13.20) posted a sparkling gate-to-wire performance and absolutely dominated the affair. Trainer/Driver Nick Roland sent the 4 year old Dragon Again gelding right to the lead from post 5, and controlled everything through moderate front panels of 28.0 and 56.2 before facing a strong challenge and heavy pressure from race-favorite and Midwest pacing dynamo Roland N Rock past the 3/4 marker in 1:25. Firedrake had plenty of answers for Roland N Rock (Steve Wiseman) and the rest of the field as he turned back all challenges, and turned on the afterburners to sprint home in 27.1 for the biggest win of his career, a 2 1/4 length victory in 1:52.1 to take the Dan Patch FFA Trophy. Megatron (James Yoder) was up for second, with Roland N Rock home in third.   Firedrake is no stranger to the winner's circle, in fact he has crossed the wire first in 9 of 10 starts this year, suffering his only defeat to Roland N Rock in last week's $15,000 Dan Patch preview. Firedrake was un-raced at age two, and had a great season at 3 with 6 wins and 5 seconds in 15 starts, with most of them right here at Running Aces. The razor sharp pacer is owned by Jessica Johnson and now shows 14 wins in 25 lifetime starts and $59,624.   Also on the Sunday card, Al Mar Money Glide ($65.00) pulled a big upset in the $13,000 Minnesota-Sired 3 year old Trot event, posting his first lifetime win in his seventh trip to the gate, stopping the timer in 2:01.1 with Steve Wiseman aboard for Trainer Brady Jenson and Owner Larry Jo Jenson, the gelding is by Money Talks.   Driver Steve Wiseman posted another Grand Slam for his second consecutive night with 4 wins on the card. Nick Roland and Luke Plano both picked up driving doubles as well.   The 20 cent Jackpot pick 5 pool continues to grow, with a carryover of $15,648.83 going in to the Tuesday night (July 25) program. There is also a carryover of $2,575.41 for the Race 11 Hi-5 wager on Tuesday.   By Darin Gagne, Running Aces Track Announcer

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, July 22, 2017-- Evenin' of Pleasure (George Brennan, $6.40), despite being three-deep early, was comfy late, winning Yonkers Raceway's $55,000 harness racing Open Handicap Pace. In play from post position No. 6, Evenin' of Pleasure head to wait his turn until Bakersfield (Brent Holland) stuffed Great Vintage (Eric Goodell) in behind. 'Pleasure' paid a :26.4 opening quarter-mile privilege, but rated a :30.1 next quadrant (57-second intermission), It would serve him well. It was :27.3 down the backside as The Rev (Brian Sears) tried it first-up from fourth. However, the 1:24.3 quarters found that one backing away as Evenin' of Pleasure owned a couple of lengths in the lane. He easily held Bakersfield at bay, winning by a length-and-a-quarter in 1:52. Great Vintage, Somesizesomestyle (Dan Dube) and The Rev settled for the minors. For second choice Evenin' of Pleaaure, a 7-year-old son if Dragon Again owned by Gestion J Y Blais and trained by Ron Burke, it was his second win in eight '17 tries. The exacta paid $22.20, the triple returned $81.50 and the superfecta paid $405. Yonkers offers up the second of eight consecutive Sunday matinees (July 23rd), with a first post of 12:30 PM. Frank Drucker

Wilkes-Barre, PA --- After losing for the first time this season in last week's Max C. Hempt Memorial eliminations for harness racing 3-year-old male pacers, Fear The Dragon was right back to winning form in Saturday's (July 1) final, capturing the $500,000 event by three-quarters of a length over Funknwaffles in 1:49.3 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.   Donttellmeagain finished third and Miso Fast was fourth.   Fear The Dragon, the 1-2 favorite from post one with David Miller in the sulky, enjoyed a second-over trip up the backstretch behind Miso Fast and made a three-wide move on the final turn before taking the lead from stablemate Downbytheseaside in the stretch. Funknwaffles, at 23-1, and Donttellmeagain, at 24-1, made late charges to claim the next two spots.   Downbytheseaside raced hard from post eight in the opening quarter-mile, finally wrestling the lead from Santafe's Coach in a :25.4 panel. Downbytheseaside remained on top until the last turn, when Miso Fast put his head in front just after reaching three-quarters in 1:22.2.   "I thought that off the rail as long as he didn't get in any trouble early he would be in great shape," winning trainer Brian Brown said. "He loves to come from behind and David had his choice of where he wanted to land, and he landed in the perfect spot.   "The speed hasn't been great tonight and when my other horse (Downbytheseaside) gets parked a quarter in :25.4 that was enough to do him in. That pretty much set the whole thing up for Fear The Dragon."   Fear The Dragon has won seven of eight races this year, including the Pepsi North America Cup, and earned $711,953 for owner Bruce Trogdon's Emerald Highlands Farm. Last year, the colt won five of 11 races, hitting the board a total of 10 times, and earned $228,391.   Trogdon bought Fear The Dragon's dam, Armbro Cinnamon, in foal to stallion Dragon Again, with the resulting foal being Fear The Dragon.   "It's great," Trogdon said. "Raising him up he was always special. I normally don't keep that many colts, but I had a few nice ones and he was one of my favorites all along. It's kind of been a dream come true.   "He was great last year, but people don't realize it. In the earlier (Pennsylvania) Sire Stakes races he beat Huntsville, he beat everybody. He basically got an eye infection, of all the weird things, and we went ahead and took him to Lexington but he just wasn't himself."   Fear The Dragon is not eligible to the upcoming Meadowlands Pace and Brown said it was unlikely the colt would be supplemented.   "We're 99 percent sure that we're going to give him the next two weeks off and then head to the Adios," Brown said.   "I knew when we set up the schedule at the beginning of the year," Trogdon said, "that we would go to the North America Cup and then here. My wife and I got engaged at the Adios, so that was on my list. The way the schedule is set up, you have to have a break somewhere. That's the way we had done it."   Fear The Dragon     $75,000 Hempt consolation   In the $75,000 Hempt consolation, Heaven's Gait grabbed the lead with a first-over move just prior to the halfway point and remained on top from there, winning by a neck over Every Way Out in 1:50.4. Summer Side finished third.   David Miller drove Heaven's Gait, the 6/5 favorite, for breeder/owner John Cummins and trainer Nicholas DeVita. Heaven's Gait is a son of Rock N Roll Heaven out of the mare Booya Beach. He has won four of nine races this year and earned $80,285. For his career, the colt has won six of 14 starts and $97,235.   Heaven's Gait     Ken Weingartner

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 10 - Fear The Dragon, driven by David Miller, defeated the harness racing bettor's choice Huntsville by a three-quarters of a length to capture the prestigious $1 million Pepsi North America Cup in 1:48.4, Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Trained by Delaware, Ohio's Brian Brown, Fear The Dragon, gave his conditioner his first Cup victory and his driver back-to back Cup wins. Miller, who now has two trophies, won last year's edition with Betting Line. Stablemate Downbytheseaside, who is also trained by Brown, finished a third. "It's unexplainable; you would have to ask the guys that win these races regularly," said Brown following the race. "This is my first time, I don't know what to say, it's incredible that were even here with two horses and to come away with a win is just something that is unexplainable." Sports Column and driver Chris Christoforou was quickest off the gate from post five and grabbed the front on the rail. Classic Pro and driver Trevor Henry was close on his heels from post six, making a rush for the lead from the outside. Classic Pro was able to take command at the quarter pole posting a flashy :25.2 opening panel. The speed revved up in the backstretch. Filibuster Hanover and driver Louis Philippe Roy came first-over from third to clear to the front but a stalking Downbytheseaside, driven by Brian Sears, caught second-over cover and was quick to steal the lead at the midway point. Downbytheseaside posted a scorching :52.1 half, the fastest half-mile in Mohawk history. The 4-5 favourite, Huntsville, driven by Tim Tetrick, was on the move first-up from fifth before the half. Fear Of The Dragon followed behind the advancing 4-5 favourite. Downbytheseaside remained in command past the three-quarters in 1:19.3 and into the lane. All three Cup elimination winners--Downbytheseaside on rail, Huntsville in the middle and Fear The Dragon on the outside--battled into the stretch. It then became a two-horse duel between Huntsville and Fear Of The Dragon, but it was the Brian Brown trainee who crossed the wire first, taking a new lifetime mark in the process. Huntsville was second and Downbytheseaside was third. "My horse was having a hard time keeping up," said Miller of the quick fractions. "He was gapping and I was chasing him and he didn't really get into contention until right at the head of the stretch and then he dug, he fought, Huntsville he kept fighting and it was a battle right to the wire." Fear The Dragon remains unbeaten as a three-year-old with six victories from six outings. He notched his 11th lifetime victory in 17 starts. The son of Dragon Again and Armbro Cinnamon picked up $750,000 for winning the Cup, which increases his career earnings to $1,075,844 for owner Emerald Highlands Farm. Fear The Dragon paid $4.90, 2.60 and $2.10, combining with Huntsville ($2.40, $2.10) for a $8.60 (4-3) exactor. A 4-3-2 (Downbytheseaside, $2.80) triactor was worth $19.90, while a $1 superfecta [4-3-2-6 (Classic Pro)] returned $59.55. Mark McKelvie

The most impressive performance on the Tuesday evening harness racing program at Running Aces came in a $6,000 conditioned event, and it was PV Miracle Mary, a 4 year old pacing mare by Dragon Again who blasted from the gate from post one to protect the pylon position in a hotly contested opening quarter of 26.0, staving off a furious battle from Blue Gem (William Hernandez) who hounded the leader through the first 5/8 of a mile before eventually tiring and finishing well back. Owner/Trainer/Driver Joe Casagranda kept his mare to task through the remaining fractions in 55.4 and 1:23.3 and held off the rest of her foes in 28.4 to win by a solid 2 ½ length margin and take her place in the Running Aces record books, after completing the mile in 1:52.2. The previous mark for four year old pacing mares was established in 2011 by Little Tootsie with Dean Magee in tow (1:53.0). PV Miracle Mary paid $4.60 to her pari-mutuel backers and she now shows 9 lifetime wins in just 24 starts, and has earned $31,650. She is also owned by David Kuzara. Second in the record mile was Cruzin Coco (Dean Magee) and Place’N First (Rick Magee) was home in third. The $11,000 feature on the night was the Mares Open Pace, and Best of Jenna ($5.40) did not disappoint her fans as she posted another brilliant gate-to-wire Tally in 1:52.3 for her third straight victory at the top mares level at Running Aces. Stable Eyes (Luke Plano) sat in the pocket behind Best of Jenna, and charged at her through the lane, but came up just short at the wire, with Shark Festival (Steve Wiseman)  picking up third money. The winner is trained and driven by Rick Magee and owned by Dr. Ken and Jana Lee Rucker. Nick Roland led all drivers this evening with a driving triple on the 11 race program The next card of live Harness Racing at Running Aces Casino & Racetrack will go to post on Saturday night, June 10 at 6:00 pm CDT, with a carryover in the .20 cent Jackpot Pick-5 wager of $6,938.18. By Darin Gagne, Running Aces Track Announcer

HARRINGTON, Del. - Bruce Kennedy and Tri County Stable's Wakizashi Hanover ($10.80, Allan Davis) won his Harrington Raceway debut Monday with a 1:53.3 win in the $15,000 harness racing featured Open pace. The 5-year-old Dragon Again gelding notched his first win of the year for trainer Jim King Jr. The complexion of the race changed when heavily favored (1-to-5) Poisonous went off stride while on the lead near three-quarters as I'm Supersonic A inherited the lead. Im Supersonic A maintained a lead through the stretch and appeared to be en route to victory before being reeled in late, courtesy of a fierce deep stretch rally from Wakizashi Hanover, who gobbled up ground with urgency near the wire. The former $1 million North American Cup winner, Wakizashi Hanover recorded his 16th career win and boosted his lifetime bankroll to nearly $1.4 million. On the undercard, Legacy Racing and Reggie Hazzard's Papa Ray ($6.60, Davis) prevailed for trainer Wayne Givens in 1:53.4. Davis had three wins on the program. Matthew Sparacino  

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec - Track record holder, Caroluzzo, was given a perfect two-hole trip by driver Stephane Gendron, then used the passing lane to post a quarter length victory over Raising Richard in winning the Preferred Trot at the Hippodrome 3R Sunday. Sent off as a 10-1 long shot, Caroluzzo left to the lead from post four, then by the opening quarter mile in :28.4, gave way to Rocky Boy and driver Marc Bellanger. After going to the half mile in :58.1, driver Richard Simard came first-over with race favorite Raising Richard, who was going for his fourth straight win and they put pressure on Rocky Boy to the three-quarters in 1:28.2. And all the while, Gendron sat patiently with Caroluzzo. As the three horses started down the stretch, Gendron asked Caroluzzo and the seven-time winner last year, responded and held off a game Raising Richard to win in a photo finish with Rocky Boy fading to third place. The time of the mile was 1:59.3 over the "good" track that had a two-second allowance due to earlier rains. For Caroluzzo, who still holds the track record for a 1.5-mile race at H3R in 2013, is now an eight-year-old stallion by Musclesextrodnair. He is trained by Daniel Martin and was bred and is owned by Michael Cote Gagnon of Terrebonne, paying $22.20 to win. Stephane Gendron made it a co-feature driving double with Mohawk Raceway invader, Ufdragons Rocket, making the trip worthwhile to Trois-Rivieres Sunday, leading from start to finish in the 10th race Preferred Pace with a 1:58.1 triumph. Ufdragons Rocket was parked out early by Onyx V A (Mario Charron) to a quick opening quarter mile of :27.4, but Gendron was able to back down the pace to almost a walk, going to the half mile marker in :59. Despite a valient first-over effort by HP Patriote (Pascal Berube) in the backstretch, Ufdragons Rocket held the field at bay past the three-quarters in 1:28 and went on to win by one and one-quarter lengths. The pocket-sitting Onyx V A was second with Bali third. It was the sixth win this year for Ufsdragons Rocket, an eight-year-old gelding by Dragon Again. He is trained by Yves Tessier for owner Francois Morin of Beaceville and paid $2.60 to win as the wagering favorite. Live racing resumes next Sunday afternoon. For more information, visit TRACK NOTES: The first $50+ winner of the meet was Skyfall Sena (Pascal Berube) in the second race pace. The 24-1 long shot wired the field, paying $51.80 to win and was part of a driving quadruple for Berube. Driver Stephane Gendron ended the day with three winners and is now only eight wins away from his 4,000th career win. The final nomination payment for the $200,000 Prix D'Ete for four-year-old pacers is due Monday, May 15. The signature race for H3R will be held on August 20. From the Quebec Jockey Club        

TROIS-RIVERES, Quebec - Last Sunday at the Hippodrome 3R, Rocky Boy was feeling his oats in scoring a TKO in the Preferred Trot, and now faces some tough invaders this Sunday as he seeks a repeat performance. There are nine starters in the 7th race co-feature. Rocky Boy and driver Marc Belanger starts from post seven. Last week he was pressured to a blazing :27.4 opening quarter on H3R's half mile oval, and then held the field at bay, winning in a romp by six and three-quarter lengths in 1:57. In any other age or gender division at H3R, that would have been a track record mile. The record for older trotting geldings is 1:56, set by both Pablo Angus (2008) and Michelangelo (2014). Invaders to H3R for the top trot that will give Rocky Boy a tussle include Raising Richard in post five for driver Richard Simard. Raising Richard comes into the contest on a three-race winning streak at Rideau Carlton, the fastest a 1:57 triumph. Raising Richard sports four wins this season in just nine starts. Four Starz Speed is the class of the field with career earnings of $805,000. The old man of the field at age 12, Four Starz Speed recently won at Rideau Carlton in 1:58.4 and has three wins already this season. Torches Angel, the lone mare in the field, was second best to Rocky Boy last week, and starts from post six for driver Pierre-Luc Roy while track record holder, Caroluzzo, goes from post four with Stephane Gendron handling the lines. Sunday's Preferred Pace is a wide-open affair with nine starters in the 10th race. Newcomer Ufdragons Rocket ships in from Mohawk Raceway and goes from post five for driver Stephane Gendron. They have been made the 5/2 race favorite. He did not fare well in his two starts in Toronto, but prior at Rideau Carlton, had won four straight races, the fastest in 1:52.1 and sports five wins this season. The race sees the 2016 top three-year-old pacer and Sire Stakes Champion, HP Patriote, return to H3R, starting from post seven for trainer/driver Gerard Demers. Last season the gelded son of Vintage Master, won an impressive 13 starts. He is making just his second start of the season. Another top three-year-old from last season in the Quebec-Bred Series making his debut Sunday in the Preferred Pace is Sports Authority. He starts from post three for trainer Maxime Velaya and driver Pierre-Luc Roy. Velaya feels that this one will be the big star in the stable this year and have kept him eligible for the $200,000 Prix D'Ete on August 20. As well, HP Patriote is also nominated for the Prix D'Ete. Other contenders in the field include Pantheon Seelster (post 8), Bali (post 6) and Onyx (post 1). For more information, visit TRACK NOTES: Driver Stephane Gendron is now 11 wins away from his 4,000th career win and has six drives Sunday. Both Reposession (race 2) and Jamigo (race 7) will seek to remain undefeated at H3R this season, both with two wins already. First race post time is 12:50 pm. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

WILKES-BARRE PA – Mr D’s Dragon left from the rail, went right to the lead, and “improved his position from there,” scoring an easy 4½ length harness racing victory in the $18,000 featured pace Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Driver Christian Lind hustled the four-year-old altered son of Dragon Again right to the top and caused wholesale tucks to the 26 quarter, then backed off the half to 55.1. Mr D’s Dragon then sped his third quarter in 27 to open up a six length lead, and cruised home well in hand to trip the timer in 1:50.1, lowering his mark two seconds and finishing only 2/5 of a second of Orillia Joe’s 1:49.4 seasonal standard at The Downs. Miso Fast, third in the Breeders Crown last year behind Downbytheseaside and Huntsville, was the 3-5 favorite in his sophomore debut, but he couldn’t catch the whirlwind winner, although he did get second in a three-way photo over Candell (third) and Johnny Q (fourth). But tonight none of them was in the league of Mr D’s Dragon, owned by Bender Sweden Inc., Elmer Fannin, and trainer Staffan Lind, who like his son Christian posted his second win of the card; Team Lind would then take a later race to wrap up a perfect 3-for-3 night at the mountain oval. In a $16,000 trot, Libertarian, limited to 12 starts in his first three years of eligibility for racing, continued to make up for lost time, running his seasonal tally to 5-for-9 by winning in 1:54.3, six lengths clear at the finish for driver Matt Kakaley and trainer Rich Gillock. The royally-bred Donato Hanover gelding, a half-brother to $670,000+ winner Major Athens, is finally rewarding the patience of owners Thomas Brice and Charles Resecki. Monday’s card will feature two $30,000 Championship paces in the Bobby Weiss Series competition, with Dash Of Dragon, Highalator, and Talent Soup sure to draw attention in the event for males, with the distaff Championship likely to find Andrew Harris stablemates Cousin Mary and Itty Bitty figuring prominently in the racing action.   PHHA / Pocono

Dragon Again, a winner of more than $2.3 million on the harness racing track and the sire of the winners of more than $122.7 million, including the $7.5 million-winner Foiled Again, the sport's all-time richest racehorse, was euthanized Wednesday afternoon, April 19, at Sugar Valley Farm in Ohio, where he had stood stallion duty since 2014. Dragon Again's death comes one week after Sugar Valley Farm announced the retirement of the 22-year-old son of Dragon's Lair. In making that announcement, Sugar Valley Farm co-owner Joe McLead said Dragon Again had a fused right ankle that was ailing him. "He's had that fused right ankle the last 14 years and in the last day or so the ankle became just too much for him to deal with. It had begun to take its toll on the rest of his body," McLead said on Thursday morning. Dragon Again was bred by Andray Farm and was purchased as a yearling for $40,000 by Ohioan Ed Mullinax. Mullinax owned Dragon Again his entire racing career and is still the majority shareholder in the Dragon Again Syndicate. "I consulted with Mr. Mullinax and we made the decision to euthanize together," said McLead. "We did not want the horse to suffer." Dragon Again won 29 of 70 starts, with his biggest victory coming in the $450,000 Hoosier Cup in 1998 at Hoosier Park. Other big wins for Dragon Again included the $350,000 Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk Racetrack and the $250,000 Prix d'Autumn at Hippodrome de Montreal in 1999, and the $150,000 Battle of Lake Erie in 1999 at Northfield Park. Dragon Again's career best of 1:48.3 came on June 17, 2000, when he won the $87,600 Pacing Classic at Woodbine. At the time the mile was the fastest ever paced in Canada. Dragon Again was retired following his 5-year-old season in 2000, going on to a stud career at Hanover Shoe Farms in Pennsylvania. He stood at Hanover for 13 years before moving to Sugar Valley in 2014, where the size of his books were 116, 107 and 82 in years 2014-16. Dragon Again bred some mares this season, with a few already pronounced in foal. In addition to Foiled Again, Dragon Again's other $1-million-plus performers include My Little Dragon ($2.3 million); Atochia ($1.8 million); Aracache Hanover ($1.7 million); Wakizashi Hanover ($1.3 million); Versado ($1.2 million); and Tidewaterdragonfly ($1 million). Overall, Dragon Again sired 334 lifetime $100,000 winners from 940 performers. From those performers, 562 took marks of 1:55 or better. His fastest progeny were 1:48 winners Foiled Again, Wakizashi Hanover and Vlos. McLead said Dragon Again was buried on the farm near his paddock by the Sugar Valley office. "We have a pond near his paddock and there are two oak trees at the back of the pond, and we buried him between those two trees so he can see all the broodmares and his paddock," said McLead. Gordon Waterstone The Horseman And Fair World

Delaware, OH --- Dragon Again, a sire of the winners of more than $124 million, has been officially retired from stallion duties effective Tuesday (April 11). The 22-year-old stallion, himself a winner of more than $2.3 million, will live out his retirement at Delaware, Ohio’s Sugar Valley Farm, where he has been standing stud since 2014. “We made the decision in the best interest of Dragon,” said Joe McLead, co-owner of Sugar Valley Farm. “As syndicate manager I consulted with Mr. (Ed) Mullinax, who owned him throughout his racing career and is still his majority shareholder, as well as Hanover Shoe Farms’ Dr. Jablonsky and Jim Simpson, where he stood the majority of his career. “Dragon doesn’t owe anyone and has been a huge asset to our wonderful sport and will continue to be in the years to come. I would like to thank everyone who has supported him and helped in his success, both at Hanover and Sugar Valley Farm.” For his stallion career, Dragon Again has had an impact on the Standardbred breed from beginning to end. Foiled Again, the richest Standardbred of all time with earnings of more than $7.5 million and counting, was a foal of his 2004 crop. More recently, he was the sire of 2015 North America Cup winner Wakizashi Hanover. He was the sire of the 2016 sales topper at the Ohio Selected Jug Yearling Sale, the colt Allgonowhoa, who sold for $80,000. All starters by Dragon Again average over $116,000 each. He is also the sire of seven millionaires.  

LEBANON, OH - Sossy's King Kong was gorilla-like in the $22,500 championship final of the George Williams Memorial Series on Saturday night (March 18) at Miami Valley Raceway. Following a pair of runnerup finishes to Control Tower (Dan Noble) in preliminary legs driver Tyler Smith decided to play hardball in the early stages of the final after drawing two spots closer to the pylons than his daunted adversary. Smith and Sossy's King Kong did eventually allow odds-on favorite Control Tower to clear to the front, but not before pacing past the quarter mile marker in :26.3. Content to ride the pocket until the head of the stretch, the winning 4-year-old Dragon Again gelding roared to victory when angled out for the stretch drive. Control Tower tripped the middle teletimer beams in :54.2 and 1:23.3 before Sossy's King Kong stopped the clock in 1:53.1. Kris Hinchcliff trains the series winner for Hinchcliff Racing. He paid $11.40 as the third choice in the wagering. For the fourth consecutive week, a former $30,000 claimer won the $22,000 Open I Pace. This time, however, it was not track record holder Franzo-who was ruled out a week following three straight Open wins. Kiss of Terror was collared a week ago via the claim box by owners Kirk Nichols and Seth Downing and entrusted to the father-son team of trainer Dan Ater and driver Kyle Ater. The result was an immediate dividend on their investment as the 5-year-old Western Terror gelding responded with a 1:51.2 upset triumph over even money favorite Night Pro (Sam Widger) for his new connections. A blazing :25.3 first quarter saw Angelo J Fra (Dan Noble) force Night Pro to take a seat in the pocket. Those top two were still in control at the :53.2 half before My Buddy Ninkster (Tyler Smith) and Latest Desire (Josh Sutton) formed an outer flow with Kiss Of Terror tugging along behind them at the 1:22.1 three-quarters station. Ater swung his new stable star four-wide at the head of the stretch and closed admirably to score the victory. Night Pro, who has now finished first 13 times and second 11 in his last 24 races, had trouble finding a seam until midway through the stretch and was pacing fastest of all at the wire to be runnerup. My Hero Ron (Mike Oosting) rallied for third. Driver Trace Tetrick visited the winner's circle five times on Saturday night to become the first reinsman to reach 100 wins during the 2017 meet. Tetrick, who will be returning to Hoosier Park on April 1, but plans to continue racing at Miami Valley two days a week during the final five weeks of the southwest Ohio meet, currently has a 17 win lead over Kayne Kauffman (83 wins). Tyler Smith (58) and Chris Page (56) are next in the dash derby. From the Miami Valley Press Box  

Columbus, OH --- It was 20 years ago when Bruce Trogdon sat alongside harness racing trainer Kelly O’Donnell as he bid on Dragon Again. At that time, he thought O’Donnell might not be making the best financial decision, but Trogdon now has a colt by that stallion in Fear The Dragon that is poised to set the sophomore pacing division aflame. “I was done shopping and sat down with Kelly,” Trogdon said. “He used to train for me and Dragon Again was a really nice-looking colt; his conformation was perfect, but he was by Dragon’s Lair, so the pedigree might not be there. I told him $40,000 was too much for that horse, but I guess what did I know?” Fear The Dragon is a 3-year-old son of the aforementioned stallion and the Western Ideal mare Armbro Cinnamon. While world champions Huntsville and stablemate Downbytheseaside have been grabbing all the headlines, this half-brother to Cinamony (Art Official, $532,404) has quietly amassed $228,391,has defeated Huntsville and equaled a track record at The Meadows of 1:50.3. “This is without a doubt the finest colt I have ever had,” Trogdon said. “I usually sell colts and just keep fillies, but he was just so good from the day he was born; not too big, not too small. He does what you ask him, too. I think Huntsville and Downbytheseaside are very talented horses, but this colt is nice, too.” Conditioned by Brian Brown and steered nearly exclusively by David Miller, Fear The Dragon commenced his career with a second place finish on June 26, 2016 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in a $30,000 Pennsylvania All Stars division. He demonstrated speed, however, by throwing down a :26.4 last quarter-mile in his debut. The colt then reeled off four consecutive victories, three in Pennsylvania Sire Stakes company and a $19,291 division of the Arden Downs at The Meadows, before coming home third behind Huntsville, a rival he had defeated the previous week, on Aug. 27 in a Sire Stakes contest. “Early in the year he was the best 2-year-old in the country, which he showed by beating Huntsville and some other real good colts,” said Trogdon. “The first time David Miller drove him he said that he liked him better than Downbytheseadside. That is saying a lot because he and Hunstville are both tremendous horses I think. Both are future stallions that I would likely want to breed to.” Fear The Dragon was third again in his next contest, the $252,000 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship, to Huntsville and Downbytheseaside, prior to his runner-up finish to his barn mate in a world record mile of 1:50 at the Delaware County Fair on Sept. 18 in a $34,500 division of the Standardbred stake. “What people don't know is that Yannick (driver Gingras on Normandy Beach) accidentally stepped on our wheel going for home in the PASS championship and he raced the last quarter with a flat tire finishing third,” Trogdon said. “We then drew the outside at Delaware while our stablemate Downbytheseaside drew inside in his world record shattering performance. Dragon came off the pace and closed well for second. “He then won the Elevation at Hoosier, beating Ocean Colony, who is another good son of Somebeachsomewhere. I own his full sister (Romanceonthebeach); she is one of our broodmares.” Following Delaware, Fear The Dragon rebounded with a powerful performance to enter the Hoosier Park winner’s circle with a triumph in the $140,000 Elevation Stake on Sept. 24. He threw down a blistering last quarter-mile in :26.3 and his time of 1:50.4 just missed the track record. “Dragon injured his eye somehow before Lexington, that is why he raced in the fly mask,” Trogdon said. “He raced well, but it was really bothering him. “I rarely race my 2-year-olds late, so he was not staked to the Breeders Crown last year. We quit with him early and he had a great turnout at our farm.” The colt’s first race with the fly mask resulted in a seventh place finish in the Bluegrass Stakes at Red Mile, the only time he has been off the board. Fear The Dragon, however, bounced back with a second place finish to Huntsville in his world record equaling mile of 1:49 in a division of the International Stallion Stakes on Oct. 8. “He (Brown) shipped him to Florida the first of December and he is feeling good and training down great,” Trogdon said. “He is staked to a lot including the Adios, Little Brown Jug, Lexington and Breeders Crown, so we will have a chance to prove that he is no fluke. “I have turned down huge offers for him as everyone knows how good he was. He races very relaxed and can leave or come off the pace; he is very handy and has an effortless gait. That's why Dave (Miller) likes him so well. “We raised him and broke him at Emerald Highlands. We own his mother and she is back in foal to Dragon Again because we liked him so well. He is a good-looking, medium-sized horse with great conformation. His mother is a daughter of Mattaroni. I am hoping he becomes a great stallion himself and is the one to carry on the Dragon Again line. He would make a great outcross to practically my entire broodmare band.” by Kim French, USTA Internet News Editor 

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