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Charlottetown, PE - Tempo Seelster and harness racing driver Vince Poulton won the evening feature over a fast closing Carnivore (Walter Cheverie) and Cabo Pan Lucas (Danny MacDonald) Saturday at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. The mile was charted in 1:57.3 for Tempo Seelster who left from post three and cut fractions of 29.1, 59.3 and 1:28.4. The son of Santanna Blue Chip flashed a closing panel of 28.4. It was Poulton's second winner on the program after another wire to wire score with IDK owned by his sister Gail MacDonald and trained by his brother Gary Poulton of Charlottetown. Corey MacPherson enjoyed a big night at the office with a driving triple. MacPherson won with Alliegetty for owner Kent Livingston, Brodys Leona, who nosed out Motorino in a photo finish to go right to her personal best of 1:58.3 for owners Kerry and Emily Taylor, Stratford and Lisa Richards, Cornwall and veteran Life Savior for trainer Duane MacEachern and owner Darla MacEachern of Kensington. Fightmaster put in an impressive performance winning in gate to wire fashion in 1:57.4 for driver Mike McGuigan and his co-owner Jack Quinn, Charlottetown. For complete results go to www.redshores.ca By Lee Drake

May 9, 2015 - Villeroi (6m Oiseau de Faux-Pocahontas) took today’s co-featured Prix du Gatinais (€85,000 purse, 14 European starters, 2700 meters) timed in 1.12.6kr for harness racing driver Eric Raffin and trainer Sebastian Guarato. Ecurie Pierre Pilarski owns the winner that scored at odds of 4.7/1. Tornado Bello (8m Jag de Bellouet-Enfilade), the half-brother to Offshore Dream, was a game pacesetting second for Thomas Levesque and trainer Mike Lenders as 2.3/1 favorite and third went to Triskell Pacha (8g Elio Josselyn-Derose de la Butte) and teamster Franck Nivard. Sometime pressed the lead during much of the contest but tired and went offstride late. Fractions were solid with a quick final 500 meters (1.13.1kr at 1500; 1.13.5kr at 1000; 1.13.2kr at 500 and 1.12.6kr finish). This race was today’s Quinte+ with a jackpot of €3.55 million. The Gr. III Prix Guillaume de Bellaigue (monte, €120,000 purse, 2700 meters, 7 International starters) went to rallying Nene’Degli Ulivi (8g Uconn Roc-Maureen Lobell) and Alexandre Abrivard for trainer Vincent Lacroix. Off at 7.7/1 the winner recorded career victory 17 in 40 outings, scoring in 1.14.4kr off slow fractions (1.13.5kr at 1500; 1.15kr at 1000; 1.15.7kr at 500, 1.14.4kr finish) set by second place 25/1 odds Vision Intense (6f Prodigious-Intense Action) ridden by Nathalie Henry for Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. Rarely a pacesetter Vision Intense raced very well. Great mare Roxane Griff (10f Tenor de Baune-Julia Mesloise) rallied valiantly late to be a close third for Eric Raffin, trainer Guarato and Ecurie Griff. She was off at 4.7/1 and raced fifth on the pegs until late in the lane. The Prix du Perreux (European, €80,000 purse, 13 starters) for upper class campaigners went to Rember Mail (5m Toss Out-E Mail Spin) and reinsman Christophe Martens for trainer Victor Martens at 3.1/1 odds. He rushed to the front with 1000 meters to go and led to the line scoring in 1.14.8kr for owner Ecurie GIGA Srl of Italy. Perkins Grif (6m Classic Photo-Radiant Victory) was second at 7.5/1 after making a strong push of the last turn and sustaining that run throughout the stretch for Roberto Andreghetti. Fabrice Souloy trains this one for Scuderia Future 2004 Srl. Rooibus (6m Rotation-Miss Tessani) was third along the pegs for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop and owner BS Stables AB at 8.5/1.  Fractions were pedestrian that set up a quick and wild finish (1.14.7kr at 1500; 1.15.5kr at 1000; 1.16.2kr at 500; 1.14.8kr finish). Thomas H. Hicks

Thursday 9th April 2015 - Riverina harness racing trainer Paul Kahledfeldt had a decision to make with multiple Gr.1 winner Lettucerockthem in the lead up to this weekend. The likable horseman had nominated the son of Art Major for the Carousel heats at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night and the S & C Club West Wyalong Pacers Cup on Sunday afternoon. After weighing up both options Kahlefeldt made the decision to chase Carnival Of Cups success at the big West Wyalong meeting. "I had a couple of options with him at Menangle and I was very tempted to go that way but I just thought I might keep him a bit closer to home and race in the West Wyalong Cup," Kahlefeldt said. "I've won a few of the country cups but I don't think I have won the West Wyalong Cup so it would be nice to pick it up this weekend." Kahlefeldt is mindful the four year old has only had two runs back from a spell and wants Lettucerockthem to be peaking for the Pepper Tree Farms Breeders Challenge later in the season. "He's had the two runs back this season and I've travelled him up to Sydney both times, I'm building him towards peak fitness and this weekend is another important step towards the Breeders Challenge." "For the time being I will continue to train him, he has obviously been trained by Belinda McCarthy previously but he is racing well at the moment and he is running some fantastic times on my track at home." Reinsman Matt Rue will be reunited with Lettucerockthem for the first time since the NSW Derby heats last season. Rue drove Lettucerockthem to victory in the Australian Pacing Gold for two year olds in 2013. "Mat hasn't driven him a lot actually but he did win the APG on him and he is going to drive him for me this weekend." Kahlefeldt will have three other runners at the West Wyalong meeting this weekend. "Lettucedance (race 2) has promised the world and hasn't really delivered, she is a sister to Bamako Mail and Sheezallattitude and I think she's at her best when she is really keen in her races." "My other two horses are in the last, Refused Service is going to win a race soon and that will mean Matthew Harrington should get his first winner as a driver while Major Kiwi has had a few issues but did win a race a few starts ago at Leeton." While Kahlefeldt is busy with all of his business interests he will be forced to take a short break from training in the near future. "We had 21 in work at one stage but we are back to a dozen, I ran my tenth Melbourne marathon last October and I broke down badly in my hip and after some scans the doctors have confirmed I need a hip replacement." "All of the running I have done over the years has come back to bite me, they tell me I will only be out of action for a couple of months, hopefully I can fit in the operation sometime in the next six months but it is definitely going to slow me down for a while." Greg Hayes

A field of six classy mares lined up behind the starter for the opening day harness racing feature from Harrah's Philadelphia, a winner's over $25,000 lifetime on the pace. The wagering public sent Bamond Racing's Venus Delight off as the 7/5 favorite. The daughter of Bettor's Delight was coming off of a solid victory in a division of the Blue Chip Matchmaker series at Yonkers.   At the start, it was the public's second choice Radar Contact (Andrew McCarthy) firing quickly off the wings, securing the lead before the quarter (28.1). The 7-year-old held the lead until the 5/8ths. That's when Ron Burke trainee Charisma Hanover (Brett Miller) powered past first-over, with Venus Delight (Tim Tetrick) loosely tracking that live cover. After a 55.1 middle half, Charisma Hanover turned for home well clear as the others battled for minor awards.   It was the 20th career win for Burke Racing & Weaver Bruscemi's 5-year-old daughter of Dragon Again, who went on to complete the mile in 1:51.3. Radar Contact battled back for place, while Venus Delight settled for third. The winner returned $10.00.   In other opening day highlights, driver Tony Morgan picked up career win number 15,000 aboard Lightning Moon in the first race of the new meet. Morgan is now one of three North American drivers with over 15,000 lifetime wins. The first race was also named in honor of Tom Izzo, a former Harrah's Philadelphia employee who passed away last year. Last season's leading driver George Napolitano Jr. had four wins on the program.   Live racing continues at Harrah's Philadelphia on Sunday, with a first post of 12:40 P.M.   Mike Bozich  

Kapunda Harness Racing Club president Marcus Hearl celebrated his club’s season start with a winner of his own on Sunday. Boundary Row, of which he is a part-owner and trainer, thrashed his rivals to win the Specialty Foods Trotters Handicap. Driven by Michael Smith, Boundary Row, the $2 favourite, trotted away from his rivals to score by 24.6 metres. It was the 10th career win for the four-year-old from just 31 starts. Another Kapunda trainer, Paul Smith tasted success with Righteous Boy in the final event, the Northland Packaging Pace, driven by his son Matthew. An excellent crowd of in excess of 500 enjoyed the day’s action. The racing was keen in all events, while the weather was fine and sunny. Race commentator Ray Fewings made mention of the great day and crowd, and the need for these country meetings. There were also three pony races conducted by the SA Harness Racing Pony Association. The ponies will be in attendance at all Kapunda meetings. The club’s next meeting is on Sunday, February 1, with the Kapunda Cup the main event. Sunday’s abbreviated result; Race 1 - Laucke Mills Pace. 1st: Darcy Tee driven by Ashley Manton and trained by Scott Garraway   of Mildura; 2nd: Captain Brannigan; 3rd: Live n Reality.   Race 2 - Wheatsheaf Pub Pacers Dash. 1st: Nevada Blackjack, driven by Wayne Hill and trained by Jill Nielson; 2nd: Jaccka Twain; 3rd: Blow Torch. This was a speed event over the short journey of 980 metres (one lap of the track), run in the time of 1.53.5. It was a very tight finish, with four horses going across the line together. Race 3 - Judy Chappell Pace  - SA Young Drivers Series. 1st: Thats Rite, driven by Shane Turner and trained by Frank Cavallaro from the Mildura region; 2nd:  Android; 3rd: Kilbirnie North View. Race 4 - Angast Park Hotel Claiming Pace. 1st: Recede, driven by David Harding for trainer Shane Loone; 2nd: Mister Manhattan; 3rd: Austral Flight. Race 5 - Speciality Foods Trot. 1st: Boundary Row, driven by Michael Smith and trained by Marcus Hearl; 2nd: Earl of Parwan; 3rd:  Matareka. Race 6 - Northland Packaging Pace. 1st: Righteous Boy, driven by Matthew Smith and trained by Paul Smith; 2nd: Cup Cakes; 3rd: One Seven I. This was another close finish, with a nose the winning margin and a short half head to third. Reprinted with permission of the Barossaherald.com.au/ site  

The Friday night harness racing feature at The Meadowlands was a $30,000 B-1/A-1/FFA event featuring Melady's Monet, who entered the contest off back to back wins. He would get a challenge from Tirade Hanover who entered the featured trot off a monstrous win in a $40,000 Four Year Old Open on Breeders Crown Saturday, where he won despite being parked the mile. Sent off as the 2-1 second-choice from post 8, Melady's Monet tracked the cover of 8/5 favorite Tirade Hanover while racing third over through fractions of 27.3, 56.2 and 1:25, before exploding in the stretch to score his third consecutive victory for Kevin McDermott. The margin of victory was not nearly as comfortable as his two previous wins, this time scoring by just a nose over the upset-minded Upfront Billy who narrowly missed at 60-1. Waiting On A woman was third. The winner was driven to victory by John Campbell for Melady Enterprises LLC of Pompano Beach, Florida. The $20,000 B-2/B-1 Handicap for mare pacers saw Mattie Terror Girl get back to her best form, winning for the seventh time this season in 1:51. Mattie Terror Girl, who raced very well against the best Free For All mares earlier in the year, earned the confidence builder for Scott Zeron, giving him a driving double. Tony Alagna trains the mare for Big Als Stables Inc., of Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada. In other action, Martini With Muscle was a sharp winner in a non-winners of 3 trotting event in 1:55 for Yannick Gingras, who had a driving double and trainer Christopher Freck. Martini With Muscle spent much of his three year old campaign facing the best of the sophomore trotting division and appreciated the class relief for owner Douglass B. Hutchins. The most impressive win on the Friday program came in race 8, a C-1 pace for Fillies and Mares, where newly acquired That Woman Hanover, a $55,000 purchase at the Harrisburg Mixed Sale for Henrik Lundell and the Joi De Vie Farm soared to an impressive 1:50.2 lifetime best performance, winning by open lengths. Lundell noted prior to the race in a paddock interview with Wendy Ross that "this filly is in a much softer spot this week and I think she will race really well tonight." He couldn't have been more right. The $.20 Cent Jackpot Super Hi-5 was hit for the first time, returning $40,502 for a $.20 cent ticket. The pool will start fresh again on Saturday, with first post time at 7:15 P.M. The Saturday program features the $500,000 Finals of the TVG Free For All Championships. Darin Zoccali

Summerside, PE - The 2014 season at Red Shores Summerside came to a close in dramatic fashion when Jason Hughes posted a hat-trick to defeat Marc Campbell to become the driving champion at the Prince County oval. Hughes ended the campaign with 47 victories while Campbell notched 44. But wait there's more. The Stratford native recorded the driving triple with his own trainees Virginonthebeach, Beckenbauer and Walbert making him the leading trainer at Summerside with 22 training victories. Thane Mann finished a close second with 19. All Turain and driver Mike Stevenson changed their game plan. The duo decided not to leave the gate and go after the lead opting to go to back of pack and stalk the field, led by Carnivore (Kenny Arsenault), through fractions of 28.3, 58.3 and 1:27.4. Stevenson sent the pacer three high down the backstretch and drove on to win the Red Shores feature in 1:56.1 for owners Lee Hicken, Charlottetown and Perry Burke, Grosse-Ile, QC. Trevor Hicken is the winning trainer. Machinthesand (Ken Murphy) was second with fraction setter Carnivore third. The 7-2-1 triactor paid $674.40. American Terror was able to hold off a fast charging Blu Meadow Willie to close out the 2014 race season at Summerside. Kenny Arsenault mapped the winning trip for trainer Edward Harvey and his co-owner Kathy MacLean, Truro, NS. Arsenault enjoyed a big day at the historic oval with four wins on the afternoon. The other horses making up the grand-slam included Come Back for trainer Timmy McKinnon, Rivervues Legacy from the Lester Stewart stable and trotter Sandhill Angel for conditioner Glenn Claybourne, Charlottetown. Lee Drake

Adam Bowden was in the Kentucky Futurity winner's circle last year with Creatine and he hopes to return there following Sunday's 122nd edition of the trotting classic, this time with Father Patrick. Bowden and his father, Chris, operate Diamond Creek Farm, which is part of Father Patrick's ownership group. Father Patrick, who has won 20 of 23 career races and $1.92 million, drew post No. 1 for Sunday's $435,000 Kentucky Futurity for 3-year-old trotters at The Red Mile in Lexington. Nine horses entered the Futurity, so eliminations are unnecessary. Yannick Gingras will drive Father Patrick for trainer Jimmy Takter in the one-dash-for-the-cash event. Rounding out the field in post order are Il Sogno Dream, Martiniwithmuscle, Datsyuk, Hillustrious, Nuncio, Mr Lindy, DD's Hitman, and Lightning Force. Sunday's card also includes the $224,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity, $173,000 Allerage Farm Open Trot, $160,500 Allerage Farm Open Pace, $90,000 Allerage Farm Mare Pace, and $89,000 Allerage Farm Mare Trot. Father Patrick brings a four-race win streak to the Futurity, including a 4-1/2 length victory over Lightning Force in 1:50.4 in a division of the Bluegrass Stakes at The Red Mile last Sunday. He also has won the $613,800 Canadian Trotting Classic, $260,000 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship and $340,000 Zweig Memorial since losing by a half-length to Datsyuk in a division of the Tompkins-Geers Stakes. "Last week he was on cruise control and still trotted in sub-1:51," said Bowden, who owns Father Patrick with John Fielding, Christina Takter, Brittany Farms, Brixton Medical AB, and the group of Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld and Sam Goldband. "Hopefully, we're in the winner's circle on Sunday. Jimmy gives me two thumbs up. I'm hoping that's going to be the case." Last year, the Diamond Creek-bred-and-owned Creatine won the Futurity for hometown trainer Bob Stewart. Bowden had planned to sell Creatine when he was a yearling, but the horse was withdrawn from the auction because of an infected hock and remained with Diamond Creek. Creatine races Sunday in the Allerage Farm Open Trot. "We've been with Bob since the beginning and for him to be a Kentucky guy, no offense, I love Father Patrick, but I don't think anything is going to top last year," Bowden said. "That was the most exciting thing for me. It was the first time. It was a homebred with a good friend of mine. We always believed in the horse and we finally won one of the big ones. That was exciting." The Bowdens started Diamond Creek Farm in 2005 in Paris, Ky., and now have a second location in Pennsylvania. Diamond Creek will stand Father Patrick as a stallion at the conclusion of his racing career. Father Patrick, bred by Brittany Farms, is a son of stallion Cantab Hall out of the mare Gala Dream. He is a full brother to million-dollar-earner Pastor Stephen. "We're very happy and lucky; we want to stand the best horses," Bowden said. "After his 2-year-old year, we took a huge risk that (Father Patrick) was going to come back and be dominant at 3. Right now it looks like our gamble is going to pay off. Cantab Hall is arguably the hottest sire in the sport, along with Muscle Hill, and here's his greatest son so far. It's a great sire line and we're hoping it continues with Father Patrick." The Kentucky Futurity is the second jewel in this year's Trotting Triple Crown. Trixton won the first, the Hambletonian, but has since been retired because of injury. The third jewel, the Yonkers Trot, is Oct. 25. Takter trained and drove Trixton in the Hambletonian. Another of his charges, Nuncio, finished second in the race. Father Patrick went off stride from post 10 and finished off the board for the only time in his career. Nuncio will be driven by John Campbell, his regular pilot, in Sunday's Futurity. Nuncio has won 12 of 22 career races and finished second in the other 10. Eight of those runner-up finishes have come behind Father Patrick. "Nuncio is one tough horse," Bowden said. "He's a great horse and in any other year he's the best horse. "One of these days you think he's going to beat his stablemate. But I hope it's not Sunday." Takter sends out the likely favorite in the Kentucky Filly Futurity, Shake It Cerry. She was the 2013 Dan Patch Award winner for best 2-year-old female trotter and has won 10 of 12 races this season. She will start from post three with driver Ron Pierce. Scream And Shout and Heaven's Door will start inside of Shake It Cerry while to her outside are Highest Peak, Chivaree Hanover, Vanity Matters, and Yoga. Scream And Shout and Yoga also are from the Takter Stable. The Allerage Farm Open Trot features Sebastian K, the fastest horse in harness racing history thanks to his 1:49 win earlier this year, two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Market Share, 2010 Kentucky Futurity winner Wishing Stone and recent Centaur Trotting Classic winner Master Of Law. Bee A Magician, the 2013 Horse of the Year, and multiple-stakes-winner Classic Martine lead the way in the Allerage Farm Mare Trot, where they will encounter Dan Patch Award-winner and defending race winner Maven. Sweet Lou, who has won 10 of 15 races and nearly $1 million this year, and Foiled Again, North American harness racing's all-time money-winner, are among the 10 horses in the Allerage Farm Open Pace. Eleven horses were entered in the Allerage Farm Mare Pace, including three-time Dan Patch Award-winner Anndrovette, stakes-winners Rocklamation and Somwherovrarainbow, world champion Shebestingin, last year's race winner Shelliscape, and 2012 winner Drop The Ball. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications  

WASHINGTON, PA, Sept. 23, 2014 -- Pecking for late racing room outside and inside, Cover Model finally found a seam and poured through to score in Tuesday's $88,600 Keystone Classic at The Meadows. Alexa Said took the other harness racing division of the stake for 2-year-old filly pacers. Cover Model was sixth near the three-quarters when Dan Rawlings slipped her off the cones into the outside flow. When cover took him nowhere, Rawlings guided Cover Model back inside and hunted room, finding it between horses. The daughter of Dragon Again-Fashion Sureal rolled home to triumph in 1:53.4, 2-1/4 lengths better than Special Package. Momas Got A Gun, a full sister to Little Brown Jug winner Limelight Beach, was third. "I came out because I thought the outside flow was good, but it wasn't going anywhere," Rawlings said. "I basically took a shot (inside), and a seam opened up. I wasn't planning on being buried like I was, but everything worked out." Douglas Lewis trains Cover Model for Frederick W. Hertrich III and CTC stable. Alexa Said roared three wide through the lane to prevail for Eric Ledford in a career-best 1:55.3. Pennsylvania Stallion Series champion Half Past Seven was second by a length while early leader Mistup Magic earned show. It was the first stakes victory for Alexa Said although Tye Loy, who conditions the daughter of Well Said-Niki Blue Chip and owns with Michael Lowe, said she easily could have several more. "She's had bad luck and bad trips," said Loy of his $18,000 yearling acquisition. "When you warm her up, you wouldn't think she could go in 2:30 the way she's lollygagging around. When she hits the gate, it's all business; she puts her game face on." In the $18,000 Filly & Mare Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, Cowgirl Hall thwarted the challenge of Better Caviar and downed him by a length in 1:53.2. Major Athens saved show. Dave Palone drove for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Jack Piatt III and Michael Rosenthal. The 5-year-old daughter of Cash Hall-Centerfold hall extended her career bankroll to $598,903. On Wednesday the Meadows Racetrack & Casino will offer a $5,000-guaranteed pool for its Pick 5 wager as part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering Initiative. The Meadows added the “instant” guarantee after Tuesday’s Pick 5 was uncovered, resulting in a carryover of $1,239.74. Minimum wager for the Pick 5 (Races 12-16) is 50 cents. Since Pennsylvania law requires a minimum per-race wager of $2, a player wagering at the 50-cent level must bet at least four tickets. First post for Wednesday’s program, which features a $117,200 Keystone Classic for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters, is 12:55 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

A field of eight lined up behind the starter in the featured harness racing event on Sunday afternoon (September 14) at Harrah's Philadelphia, a pace for winner's over $25,000 lifetime. The wagering public made Wake Up Peter (Brett Miller) the post time favorite, starting from post position five. At the start, Emeritus Maximus (Ron Pierce) got the first call off the wings, but his lead was short-lived, as Scott Rocks (Geo Napolitano Jr) brushed just beyond the quarter, which went in :26.1. After a second split in :28.1, Scott Rocks faced a challenge from the first-over Speed Again (Yannick Gingras). They battled to three quarters, which went in 1:21.3 (:27.1). Just beyond that point, Speed Again overpowered Scott Rocks, who folded up and finished last with the pocket-sitter Emeritus Maximus picking up the chase. At the finish, Speed Again narrowly held on to win by a nose, stopping the clock in 1:49.2, returning $11.60 to win. Emeritus Maximus finished second, while favored Wake Up Peter rallied for third. The winner keyed a $32.40 exacta. The trifecta paid $190.20, while the Superfecta returned $1,045.20. Speed Again is owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, and Ctc Stables, and was trained by Ron Burke. by Mike Bozich, for Harrah's Philadelphia

Oh My Joepa (Rocknroll Hanover-Nittany Lion) returned to the Vernon Downs Winner's Circle after the $6,500 feature harness racing event on Saturday night. He had won two straight before finishing third last Saturday night.   Oh My Joepa (Claude Huckabone III) sat in mid-pack throughout the early stages while You Bet Your Glass (Frank Davis) set the pace through a quarter of 27.3 seconds and a half-mile in 56.3 seconds. Oh My Joepa was able to catch some live cover from Western Tsunami (Roman Lopez) as the field moved on to the final turn. In fact, Western Tsunami took the lead as they paced past three-quarters in 1:25.   That lead lasted into the stretch, but then Oh My Joepa rallied past on the outside and strode away to win handily in 1:53.1. Martial Bliss (Joe Nassimos), who had been sent aggressively at the start before settling into a pocket trip behind You Bet Your Glass, closed smartly to finish second. Melvyn (Truman Gale) trailed early on, but was another sharp closer at the end and finished third.   The complete order of finish was: Oh My Joepa, Martial Bliss, Melvyn, Western Tsunami, The Green Knight, Dragon Fever, Cabbie's Delight, and You Bet Your Glass.   Oh My Joepa is owned and trained by Michael Deters of Coconut Creek, Florida.   Live racing resumes at Vernon Downs on Thursday night with a 12-race program. First post time is 6:45pm.   by Michael Chamberlain, Vernon Downs Publicity

Champion reinsman David Butcher will make a shock return to racenight driving tomorrow night. The Inter Dominion, New Zealand and Auckland Cup winning driver has not driven on racenight since severely injuring his pectoral muscle in a track work incident on January 27. Butcher needed an operation and has underdone intense physical therapy but did not expect to be back driving before October. But recent rapid improvement has seen him drive at the Cambridge workouts the last two weekends and he is confident he is ready for his comeback. “The muscle has felt fine and hasn’t been sore the morning after driving at the workouts,” said Butcher. “So I am ready to go and am looking forward to getting back out there.” Butcher has picked tomorrow night’s meeting because his long-time main supplier of winning drives, Geoff Small has a couple of horse worth the effort at Alexandra Park tomorrow night. But the meeting also plays host to the Island of Origin series, which sees six invited drivers from the North and South compete in the teams event. “That meant I wasn’t eligible to drive in six of the races so I could come back with an easy night.” Butcher is one of only four New Zealand horseman to have driven over 2000 domestic winners, the others being Tony Herlihy, Maurice McKendry and Ricky May. Courtsey Of Harness Racing New Zealand  

Nicholas Brockman might have been concentrating on honing his skills as a farrier this past year but he proved in Launceston today that he has lost none of his prowess in the sulky. Brockman partnered the heavily backed Bravo Charlie to a decisive victory in the McKillop Insurance Brokers Pace over 2200 metres and it was one of the drives of the day. Brockman had Bravo Charlie settled one-out-two back and while it wasn't the position he had hoped for it was good enough for him to give the gelding the run of the race. When Brockman eased hi charge three-wide to challenge the gelding quickly forged to the lead and went on to score comfortably by almost three metres from Me Mate Les with Gottalovefridays just over two metres away third. The Wayne Watson-trained three-year-old recorded a mile rate of 2.01.23 and ran home his last half (800m) in a handy 58.93. The gelding began his career in Queensland and only landed in Watson's stables in October last year. Peter Staples

The 3 YO Maryland Standardbred Fund stakes started the evening with the non wagering filly trotters going for a purse of $28,900.    Explosive Attitude(Explosive Matter) and Kelsey's Commando(Cr Commando) renewed their rivalry from July only this time Kelsey's Commando was able to catch Explosive Attitude coming down the stretch, stopping the clock in 2:00.2 last quarter in :29.2. Victor Kirby drove and trained the filly for new owners George and Rose Bonomo.   The wagering card started with the 3 YO filly pacers. Driver Tony Morgan sent Ain't No Maybe So(Nuclear Breeze) charging right to the front with a first quarter of:27.1. The Lundell entry of Valentina De Vie and Rosie De Vie sat second and third just waiting for the right moment. Jonathan Roberts pulled Valentina De Vie(Bettor's Delight) in the last turn quickly overtaking the leader winning in 1:55.3. Ain't No Maybe So held on for second and Rosie De Vie finished third. Valentina De Vie is owned by the Joie de Vie Farm.   After race 3 the Maryland Horse Industry Board presented Ocean Downs Racetrack with a Secretary's Citation from the State of Maryland in honor of the track's 65th Anniversary. MHIB also presented track owner William Rickman with a Secretary's Citation in honor of his many contributions to the harness racing industry over the year.   In the colt/gelding trot Kandy Korn(Cantab Hall) got away 6th but driver Frank Milby pulled before the half, working his way up to the leader Whichwayrightorleft near the ¾ pole. These two battled down the stretch with Kandy Korn crossing the wire in 1:59.4 for owners Bruce and Tanya Schadel.   The most exciting race of the night was the 3 YO colt/gelding pace. In usual fashion driver Corey Callahan sent Tom's Titan(Cam's Rocket) to the lead with new comer Kingofthejungle(Well Said) getting the pocket trip. At the head of the stretch Tony Morgan pulled Kingofthejungle and the two charged down the stretch head and head with Kingofthejungle winning by a head in 1:53.4 last quarter in :27.4. Desyllas Racing LLC , William Beck and Carol Rieken own and Brandon Simpson trains.   By Cheri Stambaugh  

A night field with the Alpine $3,000 claiming series harness racing action was nothing but eye popping and heart grabbing at Red Shores Charlottetown on Tuesday night. The common phrase of "Boom, just like that!" used by track announcer Vance Cameron when a large first quarter flashes up on the board was used many times Tuesday night. A total of five races on the 12 dash card feature first quarters better than :28. In the evenings feature Race 8, favourite Lyndale Royal seen his win streak stopped by Mcmacverick in line to Kenny Murphy. Lyndale Royal left off the gate from post 3 with Marc Campbell at the helm, after being clearing just before a quarter in :27.3, Campbell continued to roll his charge flipping off a half in :56.2 and three quarters in 1:26.4. Tempo Seelster made a bolt three wide move up the back stretch to clear Lyndale Royal at the head of the stretch before Mcmaverick got up in the final stride to win by a nose for owner - trainer Keith Campbell. The fastest trip of the night came in the evening finale with the 'Blue Knight' Jason Hughes guiding Outside The Wire to a five length victory winning in 1:55.1 for owners Andrew Avery and John Brodrick. Onehotvett finished second and Iron Phil was place third after I D K was placed for interference approaching three-quarters. Claiming action was in full flight in the final leg of the Alpine $ 3,000 claiming series. A total of six horses were claimed heading into the two finals Saturday night. Maiden Heaven was the first claim, she prevailed to win for her owners Charles Gaudreaut and Maxim Gaudreault in 1:58. Hello America finished third and was claimed. Whatabadgirl picked up the win in the Race 5 fillies and mares for owner, trainer, driver Gary MacDonald in 1:58.1. The third division went to driver Stephen Quinn and Mcdaisy Cutter in 1:58. On the horses and geldings side of things Cam Cool took Race 9 in 1:56.4 for driver Campbell, he and third place finisher Bakardi Arti were claimed. Godivabeachdiamond played a little hard ball hanging out two other rivals to an opening quarter of :27.4 and hanging on to win in 1:56. He and second place finisher J N J both found new addresses. Bo Ford

WASHINGTON, PA, Aug. 9, 2014 -- "Marvelous" Marvin Raber and Catching Katie waltzed to a convincing victory in Friday's $10,000 final of the C.K.G. Billings Midwest Series amateur trot at The Meadows. Raber was sitting In The Pocket down the backside when he pulled Catching Katie, a 6-year-old daughter of Revenue S-She's Queenie owned by John Schlabach, and easily gobbled up the leader, Richard Roach and Margarita Man. Raber, who trains Catching Katie, went on to score in 1:57.2, 5-3/4 lengths better than "Law Book Larry" Farley and Good Friend. Jerry "The Jet" Mihelich and Texas Ridge -- also conditioned by Raber -- earned show. "I have a lot of faith in her." Raber said. "She got a good trip and closed well. I was waiting foe right time to mover her. I thought the leader was slowing up a little bit, so I decided to go on the straightaway instead of around the turn." Raber, who at 37 is at least 17 years younger than every other competitor in the finals, indicated he doesn't necessarily view his victory as a triumph for youth. "The other drivers have a lot more experience and probably know a lot more about racing than I do," he said, "but it doesn't really matter who I'm driving against. It's a horse race, and it's all about fun." Evan Pattak

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