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Scarborough, Maine - August 11, 2018 ... A large crowd witnessed the return of Maine Sire Stakes action to Scarborough Downs on Saturday (8/11), bolstered by legions of tourists who flocked from the beaches on the overcast weekend afternoon, as they cheered on twin splits of the sophomore colt pacing division of the state-bred program. ThankYouAllMyFans revved up his engines from the get go in the $10,611 first division, as driver Eddie Davis, Jr attempted to secure the customary front end seat for his home-bred steed, a pacer who had been sent merrily down the highway in each of his last five starts. The Ron Cushing piloted Hoppi would eventually thwart that endeavor though, as the pair of speedball sophomores jockeyed for early position to the quarter, at which point it was ordained that Hoppi would lead the charge from that pole onward, with ThankYouAllMyFans' nose glued right to Cushing's helmet. A rousing, yet strategic game of catch-me-if-you-can then ensued, until the battle was re-joined at the top of the lane. ThankYouAllMyFans pulled to the outside of Hoppi at that point in the mile, as the tandem quite literally matched strides to the wire, before eventually dead-heating for the win in a sizzling 1:57 clocking; a brand new lifetime mark for both. Hoppi, while making his first start of the 2018 season, extended his undefeated streak to a perfect 10 for 10 on his career. The son of Western Hanover-Barbra Ann is trained by Heidi Gibbs for the ownership group of KDK Standardbreds and Florence O'Keefe. ThankYouAllMyFans secured his first win of the 2018 season and has now hit the board in 17 of 19 career starts. The son of Baron Biltmore-Holme In A Moment is trained by Eddie Davis, Jr for the ownership consortium of Janet and Eddie Davis, Jr and Janice Watkinson. Pembroke Pharoah's (Heath Campbell) settled for third best in the contest, as his three-race win streak came to an end. Long shot fever then struck at the Downs in the $10,610 second division as the 14-1 shot, StormyWeatherAhead and driver Matty Athearn wore down the front running combination of Eddie Davis, Jr and the pacer Twelve, in an epic display of strength and stamina. Guided to the outside just past the 3/8th's pole, StormyWeatherAhead appeared to be in uncharted territory as he began his assault on the streaking Twelve, who to that point had not tasted defeat in five consecutive appearances. Stride for stride they duked it out all the way to the wire, with Twelve appearing to hold the upper hand, until a desperate late burst of speed propelled StormyWeatherAhead past his foe at the wire, with mere whiskers separating the two at the finish. StormyWeatherAhead, a son of Luckcamotion-Wolf Creek Cupid, owned by Leighton Property and trained by Marc Tardif, stopped the clock in a career best 1:57.2, while returning a hefty $31.20 for a $2 win ticket. Twelve finished a dead-game runner-up while MyLastDime (David Ingraham) rallied for the show. Maine Sire Stakes action now heads out on its weeklong Skowhegan Fair swing before returning to the Downs in one week's time on Sunday August 19th. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing throughout the summer season on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs         #       Virus-free. www.avast.com

Plainville, MA---Eddie Davis Jr. reached the major career milestone of 5,000 wins at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (July 23) when he captured the $14,000 Winners-Over Handicap feature pace with Quick Shot in commanding fashion. From his assigned post six, Quick Shot fired to the front and never looked back. Stopping the timer in :26, :55 and 1:22.2, the gelding looked stronger as the mile went on. Heading down the lane the pocket-sitting BJ's Guy (Shawn Gray) popped out of the hole to try and run him down, but Davis and Quick Shot held sway and sailed to a two-length, 1:50.4 win. The winning time was a new seasonal mark for Quick Shot and only one fifth of a second off his lifetime best. Quick Shot ($5.80) now has eight wins and $73,860 in 2018 for owner Kathleen Brewer and trainer John Bowman. Davis has been driving since 1982 and has been a highly sought, high percentage catch driver throughout his career. The 52-year-old Delaware native now has 5,001 wins (5,001 was with Blackmalin in race 11), 5,117 seconds and 5,448 thirds in 38,869 starts and $35,789,944 in earnings. His best winning season was in 2015 when he scored 330 and he had a $3 million earnings year in 2002. Currently at Plainridge, Davis is ninth in wins among all drivers. There was a huge payout in the race six Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta. With a carry-over pool in excess of $17,000, the owner of a single 20-cent winning ticket on the combination of 6-4-3-2-8 received a massive payout of $20,049.66. Shawn Gray led all drivers for the day, making four trips to the winners' enclosure. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Tuesday (July 24) with post time set for 4 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Scarborough, Maine - July 22, 2018 ... Maine Sire Stakes action made its third consecutive appearance at Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/22) as the three-year-old colt pacing division took center stage. In stunning deja vu fashion, everything old was reminiscently new once again on Sunday with two stakes divisions generating the exact same winners from just the week prior. It seems that Pembroke Pharoah has found winning races to his liking. It was only last week that the Baron Biltmore-Migrane colt tasted the sweet nectar of success for the very first time in his career. Apparently he found the experience so pleasing that he came back for a second serving in his very next start, and has now earned the status of "flavor of the month" in Maine Sire Stakes circles. Driver Heath Campbell was once again able to negotiate a prime second-over journey for the up-and-coming sophomore this week, sliding in behind the twice favored My Last Dime (David Ingraham) as the field approached the midway point. Ever game, My Last Dime persistently tracked down the front-running ThankYouAllMyFans (Eddie Davis, Jr), ultimately overtaking his prey at the top of the lane, but equally determined, Pembroke Pharoah once again ascended over his rival at the wire, with the margin of victory not measured in cubits but rather in mere whiskers. Pembroke Pharoah is trained by Valerie Grondin for the ownership consortium of William Varney and Heath Campbell. He claimed top honors in his $10,606 stakes split while stopping the tele-timer in 1:58.4. My Last Dime was vanquished to second best for the second week in a row, while ThankYouAllMyFans held steady for third. A horse named Twelve secured his fourth consecutive Sire Stakes score in the $10,605 second division on Sunday as driver/trainer Eddie Davis, Jr deftly steered his charge on toward an early lead. From that perspective they toyed with the field through moderate fractions, gaining an advantage which they would ultimately never relinquish. Owned by Dean Malin, the Shady Character-Sabine Hanover gelding paced the mile in a leisurely 1:59.3 to score the seventh top tally of his career while simultaneously delivering the 4999th career tally for driver Eddie Davis, Jr. StormyWeatherAhead (Matthew Athearn) rode the perfect pocket trip to earn the bridesmaid share while Just One More Time (Michael Stevenson) sat the pylons to finish third. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Plainville, MA---Although Eddie Davis Jr. hasn't had as many starts at Plainridge Park this year as he's had in the past, there's no question he is still one of the craftiest reinsmen to regularly compete in the Commonwealth. One Monday (July 16) Davis illustrated that point when he scored a driving triple that included wins in both feature races. In the $16,000 Winners-Over pace, Davis directed Bet You from post four and hit the pylons while One To Draw To (Shawn Gray) left hard in :26 flat. But his passive attitude was short-lived as he rolled Bet You to the outside past the three-eighths and motored up towards the leader. In a grinding fashion, Bet You inched his way towards One To Draw To and by the 1:22.3 three-quarters was dead even with him. The two shadowed each other around far turn but by the head of the stretch, Bet You had taken the lead and extended it to two lengths. He hit the wire by himself and stopped the clock in 1:51, which equaled his seasonal mark. It was the fourth win of the year for Bet You ($3.00) who is owned by Scott Dillon and trained by Joe Nelson. And in the $12,000 conditioned undercard pace, Davis took control at the start with Attention Please and never let go. Attention Please set fractions of :26.2, :55.2 and 1:22.3 while never letting anyone get closer than a length. Rounding the final bend and heading down the lane, Davis provided some moderate urging to keep him on task but Attention Please didn't really need it as he cruised home an easy winner in 1:51.3, which was a new lifetime mark. Attention Please ($15.40) also registered his fourth win of 2018 for owner Kathleen Brewer and trainer Timmie Griffith. Davis's also won with Rapid It Up Art (1:54, $5.20) who completed the hat trick. Once again, no one hit the Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta wager in the sixth race and as a result, there is a large carry over pool of $10,931 in the sixth race on Tuesday afternoon (July 17) when live racing resumes at Plainridge Park. Post time for the first race is 4 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Plainville, MA---They were one class apart and took different paths to victory. But the commonality between Quick Shot and Bet You was they both came up big in the top two featured paces at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (July 9). In the $14,000 Winners-Over Handicap pace driver Drew Campbell reversed his strategy of recent weeks by leaving hard and fast with Quick Shot to take early command of the race. Once on the point, Quick Shot got to the quarter in a blistering :25.1 and had everyone seated. As they headed down the front stretch, Campbell grabbed two handfuls of leather and backed off the second quarter to :30.4, stacking up the trailers and coaxing Moonlight Artist (Jim Hardy) to begin an outer flow. Moonlight Artist continued to advance but as soon as he got within a length of the leader, Campbell let Quick Shot out a notch and he immediately opened up a three-length advantage. Rounding the last turn, Quick Shot was under moderate urging from Campbell and coasted home to a length victory in 1:51.1. It was the seventh win of the year and third top class win in a row at Plainridge Park for Quick Shot ($5.00), who is owned by Kathleen Brewer and trained by John Bowman. Quick Shot now has $66,860 in earnings for the year. In the $12,000 conditioned pacing secondary feature, Bet You (Eddie Davis Jr.) sat fifth off the pace, watching Kenrick N (Ron Cushing) and Electric Western (Greg Merton) battle it out to the half before following the outside cover of Ace Of Clubs (Shawn Gray) to the head of the stretch where he tipped three-deep and exploded with pace to the wire to win by a length in 1:51. In his first Plainridge start of 2018, Bet You ($13.20) got his third win of the year and came away with a new seasonal mark. Bet You is owned by Scott Dillon and is trained by Joseph Nelson. Plainridge Park defending dash winning driver Greg Merton is not accustomed to going off at 50-1, but that is what happened in race four and Merton made the most of it. Merton maneuvered Mr. Blissful, who had spent the last three weeks racing at Yonkers, from worst at the quarter to first the wire and paid $102.80 for the win. Despite the two favorites finishing second and third, the large win mutual generated bountiful gimmick payouts as well. The 7-5 exacta paid $262.40, 7-5-3 trifecta paid $1,166.40 and the 7-5-3-8 super returned $4,729.80. Eddie Davis Jr. led all drivers for wins on Monday, visiting the track photographer three times. Racing resumes on Tuesday afternoon (July 10) at Plainridge Park with a Wicked Hi-5 carryover pool of $5,210 in the sixth race. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA---After falling just short with a late closing bid at 25-1 last week, the once again overlooked Deuces For Charity sealed the deal on Tuesday afternoon (July 3) at Plainridge Park, winning the $14,000 Winners-Over Handicap for harness racing fillies and mares at 16-1 on another sultry summer day. Five horses argued for the lead for almost and eighth of a mile before three of them seated, leaving Show Runner (Shawn Gray) with the lead and Western Stepp (Drew Campbell) hung out fifth to the quarter in :26.1. As the group motored to the half, Western Stepp started to advance and Deuces For Charity (Eddie Davis Jr.) pulled from sixth and took the live cover. Western Stepp drew closer to Show Runner and by three-quarters had looked her in the eye. The two paced side by side around the turn while Deuces For Charity kept drafting and waiting to make her move off the last bend when Davis tipped her three deep. She paced past a tiring Western Stepp and engaged a susceptible Show Runner, who had been used hard the whole mile. Deuces For Charity dug in and motored right on by, winning by a length in 1:51.3 which was a new seasonal mark. It was the second win of the year for Deuces For Charity ($34.80), both of which occurred at Plainridge Park. Charles Fernandez Jr. owns the 7-year-old Armbro Deuce mare who has now earned $37,775 this year under the direction of trainer Dennis Laterza. Driver Shawn Gray had three wins on the day as did trainer Eric Beach. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Thursday (July 5) at 4 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA---Following fast fractions and live cover on a humid afternoon that hit 92 degrees, Quick Shot beat the heat, an outside post and six rivals in taking the $16,000 Winners-Over Handicap feature pace at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (July 2). BJ's Guy (Eddie Davis, Jr.) left with authority and sped the field to the quarter in :25.2. With no one feeling frisky enough to pull into that fraction heading to the half, Drew Campbell stepped up and pulled Quick Shot from fifth and eventually flushed Vegas Dream (David Ingraham) who then escorted him up the backside. As the group tripped three-quarters in 1:22.2, BJ's Guy succumbed to the pace while Vegas Dream, Quick Shot and Soho Jackman A (Chris Long) were flying three-wide and pacing in unison around the last turn . Vegas Dream had the lead in the pylon path but was passed in short order by Quick Shot and Soho Jackman A who were now both set to battle down the lane. Quick Shot gained a small advantage and despite the best effort of Soho Jackman A, he could not get by the classy Quick Shot in the stretch and he won by a length in 1:51, which tied his season's best outing of last week. It was the sixth win of the year for Quick Shot ($4.20) who has now earned $59,860 for owner Kathleen Brewer. The 6-year-old gelded son of Art Major is trained by John Bowman. The $12,500 final of the "2007 Sox" $10,000 claiming series was won by Sports Lightning (Mitchell Cushing) who pulled just past the quarter and toughed-out a first over trip to overtake the front-running Dr. C Z Tam (Greg Merton) in the stretch and win by a length in 1:52.3, which was a new seasonal mark. Sports Lightning ($4.20) is owned by William Emmons and is trained by Jim Nickerson. Drew Campbell led all drivers with three wins on the card while Mitchell Cushing and Nick Graffam had two wins apiece. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Tuesday (July 3) with post time at 4 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA---A full field of nine of the best pacing mares on the grounds lined up for the $16,000 Winners-Over distaff pacing feature at Plainridge Park on Tuesday afternoon (May 22) and after a thrilling stretch drive, Angel Or Terror proved she was the best of the bunch. Driver Eddie Davis Jr. took Angel Or Terror off the gate and settled in fourth as Western Stepp (Drew Campbell) made a decisive bolt for the lead where they would then dictate the pace. After getting to the quarter in :26.1, Western Stepp had little pressure to deal with other than Shesgotthebeat (Nick Graffam) who got parked and was floating on the rim third. Campbell slowed the half to :55.1 before trying to get away from the pack in the third panel with a :28 flat split. Under heavy urging around the far turn, Western Stepp opened up a two length advantage and was looking like a winner at the head of the stretch. But the pace must have gotten to the leader as Angel Or Terror came off the pylons from third, tipped three-wide around Caviart Caterina (Mike Stevenson) and collared Western Stepp at the wire to win by a neck in 1:53.1. Owned by Eric Prevost, who claimed her for $15,000 after her first Plainridge start on May 1, Angel Or Terror ($8.80) registered her second 2018 win and a new seasonal mark for trainer Elisha Lafreniere. Three drivers scored two wins on Tuesday. They were Shawn Gray, Drew Campbell and Mitchell Cushing, who lit up the tote board in the ninth race when he won with Freetime at 31-1 and paid $64.40. It also triggered a 3-4-7 Trifecta that returned $2,339 and a 3-4-7-1 Superfecta that paid $4,315.40, both for a $2 bet. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon (May 24) at 4 p.m. where there will be a $3,363 Wicked Hi-5 carryover pool available in the sixth race. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Scarborough, Maine - July 27, 2017 ... Alittlebithiphop continued to waltz through his sophomore campaign on Thursday (7/27) as the Maine-bred juggernaut posted his sixth win from six seasonal starts, while dominating the harness racing competition in a $10,328 division of the Maine Sire Stakes program at Scarborough Downs. Driver Eddie Davis, Jr, who once again occupied his usual seat behind the son of Baron Biltmore-PowderHanover, guided his charge confidently to the lead while reaching the half-mile marker in a rather pedestrian 1:01.1 clocking. The turbo jets were then engaged as the pacer effortlessly shifted gears through a torrid .57 back half before stopping the clock at the wire timed in 1:58.1. The streaking Alittlebithiphop is trained by James Smallwood for owner Diane Bryant. Princeoftheforest (H. Campbell) recovered from back-to-back disastrous performances to grab the runner-up share, while Mic Woodrow (D. Campbell) finished an aggressive third. Maine Sire Stakes action returns to Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/30) afternoon as the three-year-old filly pacing division takes center stage. Scarborough Downs is pleased to present twilight harness racing cards on a Thursday and Saturday schedule at 4:30 PM (EDT) with the Sunday matinee heading to post at 1:30 PM. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs  

Scarborough, Maine - July 16, 2017 ... The three-year-old trotting divisions of the Maine Sire Stakes program made their second consecutive stop at Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/16) and although stakes season is still relatively young in Maine this year, certain patterns are becoming rather evident. This weekend the theme of the day could well have been "Double Your Pleasure" as all of last week's winners doubled down on winner's circle glory with win streaks beginning to mount on those harness racing charted lines. Fuzzy Sweater overcame an early bobble before the start to extend her win streak to two in a row in the 10,322 filly division in which a grand total of 6 state-bred trotters went to post for a share of the $10,322 purse. Driven by Eddie Davis, Jr for trainer Brian Lamb, the daughter of Noble Venture relied upon on the missteps of others to gain the early lead, before gamely withstanding a surprising and persistent challenge from Noble One (I. Davies) just past the quarter pole, that extended well into the second turn before being repelled at the 3/8th pole. Fuzzy Sweater, owned by Di Stefano & Son Stable, pretty much controlled the tempo from that point on, en route to securing a brand new lifetime Mark of 2:04.2. Mary June Victory (Wallace Watson) eked out the slightest of advantages to claim the bridesmaid share while Noble One settled for the show. Let's Get It All did just that, as the son of Noble Venture-Bimmelibim remained perfect in sophomore stakes competition, spinning his third win in a row in the first of two $10,003 colt trotting divisions. Hustled confidently to the early lead by driver Ron Cushing, the streaking steed was never seriously threatened during the course of the mile, stopping the tele-timer in an unhurried 2:01.2, despite being throttled down in the stretch. Let's Get It All is trained by Heidi Gibbs for the ownership consortium of Lucia Les, Kenneth Clairmont and Ron Cushing. Prydwen (I. Davies) sat second throughout to finish second while Happy Hooligan (N. Graffam) sat third throughout to finish third. Fox Cast and driver Wallace Watson made it two in a row as the tandem sat chilly at the wood behind the expected early speed of Pembroke Morgan (W. Watson) in the second $10,003 colt division. The two came together quickly though as Fox Cast, like a true disciple of the Don Richards stable, pulled just off the 3/8th pole to engage the front runner. The battle continued all the way around to the head of the stretch before Pembroke Morgan rolled off stride under the persistent pressure, allowing Fox Cast to sprint clear. The son of Current Cast-Celebrity Image is trained by Hall of Fame conditioner Donald Richards for owners Thomas Dillon and Walter Hight. The win was timed in a lifetime best 2:01.3. Bruizn (K. Ireland) benefited from Pembroke Morgan's break to finish second while Pembroke Morgan recovered his stride in time to cross the wire in third. Maine Sire Stakes action returns to Scarborough Downs on Thursday (7/20) afternoon as the three-year-old filly pacing division graces the seaside oval. Scarborough Downs is pleased to present twilight harness racing cards on a Thursday and Saturday schedule at 4:30 PM (EDT) with the Sunday matinee heading to post at 1:30 PM. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - July 8, 2017 ... Brisk early speed proved not only to be the key winning strategy, but ultimately the saving grace for ALittleBitHipHop, who remained undefeated as a harness racing sophomore, in what would evolved into an incident marred edition of the three-year-old colt class of the Maine Sire Stakes program at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (6/8). Trouble reared its ugly head early in the split, just after the word "Go" was given in fact, as the favored Kevin Switzer trained mutuel-entry of Bilt For Delight and PrinceOfTheForest effectively took themselves out of the contest before entering the first turn. Bilt For Delight veered sharply right as he entered the bend, hooking up and entangling himself with his stable-mate, before impeding and causing interference with half the field. ALittleBitHipHop and driver Eddie Davis, Jr were able to avoid the commotion unfolding behind them, as they sped out to an uncontested early lead before stopping the clock at the wire in a brand new career best 1:57 clocking. Trained by James Smallwood for owner Diane Bryant, the son of Baron Biltmore-Powder Hanover scored his fourth win of the season from four seasonal starts. JustCallMeDino (M. Athearn) parlayed an unimpeded journey to the runner-up placing while Mic Woodrow (M. Graffam), the only other horse to avoid the early mishap, finished third. Maine Sire stakes action returns to the Downs on Thursday (7/13) as the two-year-old filly pacing divisions take their turn at the raceway. Scarborough Downs is pleased to present twilight harness racing cards on a Thursday and Saturday schedule at 4:30 PM (EDT) with the Sunday matinee heading to post at 1:30 PM. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs  

Plainville, MA---Although having a very solid body of work this year, Quick Shot has been lightly regarded at the windows of late. Well those harness racing fans who kept the faith were rewarded on Monday (June 12) as the big gun fired and won the $14,000 Open Handicap pace at Plainridge Park. With four horses leaving hard off the gate, Quick Shot (Eddie Davis Jr.) was taken back to fifth and safely tucked to the wood where he observed the proceedings for most of the mile. He watched He's Marvelous (Nick Graffam) scorch the stonedust on the point while setting fractional times of :25.4, :53.4 and 1:21.2, pacing loosely on the lead. As the race approached that third panel, the heavily favored Givenupdreaming (Kevin Switzer Jr.) had pulled from fourth, first over and Qucik Shot snuck out right behind him and gained a perfect striking position. When the field came off the last turn, Quick Shot tipped three-high around Givenupdreaming and overtook the tiring He's Marvelous for the lead. While a highly animated Davis was bouncing in the bike like he was sitting on a spring, Quick Shot was responding to the rhythm and paced away from his foes to win by a length in 1:51.2. It was the third win in 19 starts this season for Quick Shot ($48.80) and it fattened his wallet to $43,833 for the year. The 5-year-old gelded son of Art Major is owned By Kathleen Brewer and is trained by Arthur Brewer II. In the $12,000 co-feature for conditioned pacers, American Rock (Jim Hardy) took advantage of a perfect two-hole trip behind Madiba Magic (Greg Merton) before shaking cover at the top of the lane to score a one-length victory in 1:52.1. It was the third win of the year for American Rock ($8.20) but first since coming to Plainridge. The winner is owned by Stephen Zajchowski Jr., David Thibault , Christine Thibault and Jim Hardy, who also trains him. Kevin Switzer Jr. and Greg Merton each doubled-up in the win column as did trainer Jackie Greene. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park at 4 p.m. on Tuesday (June 13).   By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA---Class relief was the difference for Just Make Believe, who stepped down from last week's Open to take this week's $10,000 feature race for harness racing conditional trotters at Plainridge Park on Thursday (April 27). Just Make Believe (Eddie Davis Jr.) out-charged Old Oak (Steve Nason) off the gate for the lead before settling into that position by the eighth pole. The remainder of the field followed in post-position order to the quarter in :27.4. Approaching the half, One Swan For All (Wally Watson) pulled first over in the outer flow but broke shortly after that move. This left Keystone Ace (Bruce Aldrich Jr.) next in line to pressure the leader. As the race proceeded up the backside, Keystone Ace drew within a half-length of Just Make Believe and the two trotted in step by three-quarters in 1:26.1. But the battle was just beginning. With less than a length advantage, Just Make Believe was trotting strong near the pylons with Keystone Ace closing incrementally outside. With the wire closing in, It looked as if the leader was in reach but just Make Believe held sway and hung on to a neck victory in 1:56. It was the second win in eight starts this year for Just Make Believe ($6.20) and the winning time was a new seasonal mark. The 7-year-old gelded son of Kadabra is owned by Linda Kenney and Di Stefano and Son Stable and is trained by John Di Stefano. It was payoffs-a-plenty again at Plainridge Park on Thursday, led off by the first winning ticket on the new Wicked Hi-5 wager in the sixth race. The owner of the 20-cent straight ticket on the combination of 5-1-7-9-6 was rewarded with a $7,996 payout. In the fifth race, What A Hooligan (Michael Stevenson) paid $37.80 for the win and in the ninth race Southwind Inferno (Matthew Athearn) rewarded his backers with a $52.60 mutual. The $2 superfecta combination of 4-3-7-8 in that race returned an instant jackpot of $9,039.80. Greg Merton had a driving hat-trick and Elisha Lafreniere scored a conditioning double. With three weeks of the meet in the books, Bruce Aldrich Jr. maintains the dash driving lead with 22 victories and has Greg Merton right behind him with 20. After Thursday's action, Elisha Lafreniere took over the training lead with eight wins, one ahead of Heidi Gibbs with seven. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (May 1) at 4 p.m. Please note that starting next week; Plainridge will now race four-days a week (Monday-Tuesday-Thursday-Friday) with post time all four days at 4 p.m. By Tim Bojarski for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Plainville, MA--- Miami Valley Raceway shipper Hickory Icon was placed in the capable hands of harness racing driver Eddie Davis Jr. for the $15,000 Open handicap pace at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (April 24) and the two left little doubt who was the best this day. Davis left hard from post seven with Hickory Icon and took the lead just past the eighth pole. From there they he led unchallenged to the quarter in :26.2 and the half in :55.1. At that point, My Mind Is Madeup (Bruce Aldrich Jr.) pulled first over from fourth and tried to force the issue. The challenger got his nose near Davis's helmet just before the three-quarter pole, but his advance stopped at that point. Davis raised the lines and let Hickory Icon know it was time to shift gears and the gelding responded in kind. Hickory Icon opened up two, then three, and down the lane he simply paced away with Davis sitting chilly to win in 1:50.4. The winning time equaled the 7-year-old son of Real Desire's lifetime mark. It was the fifth win in 14 starts for Hickory Icon ($7.80) and pushed his earnings for the year to $43,410 for owner Jessica Smith. Randal Smith trains the winner. The value bettors went home smiling as it was mega-payout Monday at Plainridge Park. With only three favorites winning on the 11-race card, the tote board was blown-up several times during the day. In the fourth, Ideal Race (Kevin Switzer Jr.) paid $38.20 while Mercenary (Ron Cushing) paid $98.40 in the sixth, triggering a $38,221.20 2-9-7 trifecta payout. Trelane (Ron Cushing) returned $19.20 in the eighth, Mcardle Royale N (Chris Long) returned $21.40 in the ninth and Someplace Special (Michael Stevenson) lit it up large once again in the tenth paying $69.00. Seven horsemen registered two winners on Monday's card. Ron Cushing, Michael Stevenson, Bruce Aldrich Jr. and Greg Merton all scored driving doubles. Trainers Joe Nelson, Robert Nelson and Kyle Spagnola each sent a couple stable members for pictures. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Tuesday afternoon (April 25) with the first post set for 4 p.m. There is a $5,342.95 carryover for the Wicked Hi-5 wager in the sixth race. By Tim Bojarski for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

The 2016 Scarborough Downs harness racing meet opened up to rave reviews on Saturday (3/26) with a generous mix of full fields, speedy miles and blanket finishes on full display, as the enthusiastic opening day crowd roared it's approval. The undisputed stars of the day were trainer Philip "Bo" Sowers and driver Eddie Davis, Jr. who both recorded four wins on the ten race program. The tandem serving notice right from the very first race that this combination of talent would stand as a force to be reckoned with in state of Maine harness racing this season. Davis utilized a patient strategy to claim victory with Clubber Lang, a newcomer to the Sowers roster, sitting a stalking third in the early going of the opening race, before igniting the after burners through a powerful 28-second third quarter, to extend out to an insurmountable lead before coasting to an open-lengths margin timed in 1:56.1. Davis also engineered the winning strategy with two other new arrivals to the Sowers' barn (Body Guard and Lady's Bag Man), before concluding his grand slam day with a victorious nail-biter as Cool Runnings, a member of his own stable, held off a hard charging Sandy Barbie Legacy (Louis Gassbarro, III) by a head at the wire. Sowers' fourth win came in the $6000 feature race event with the 12-year-old veteran, Noble's Grand Slam (Ron Cushing), upsetting the top class contestants at 13-1 odds. With the first of 101 scheduled race cards now in the books, the staff and horsemen at the seaside oval look forward to bringing continued fast paced action to the fans with tomorrow's (3/27) Easter Sunday card set to head to post at 1:30 PM. Scarborough Downs proudly features live harness racing every Saturday and Sunday with post time at 1:30 pm. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs

Dover, Del.--- Twice Horse of the Meet Nova Artist scored his first win of 2016 to win one of the Thursday, Jan. 28th harness racing tri-features at Dover Downs.. Nova Artist turned back eight rivals in 1:51.3 to win the$9,000 Male pace to bring his lifetime earnings to just short of seven-digits, $976,197, with his 44th career victory. Fire In The Belly (Vic Kirby) was second with Four Staces (George Dennis) third. Nova Artist is an all Davis family horse. Owned by the Delaware Valley's all-time leading winning driver, Eddie Davis and his wife, Kathy, the nine-year-old son of Real Artist-Avon Lady, is trained by their son Martin Davis and Allan Davis, his driver. Davis also guided Muffmaster to a 1:55 victory in a $9,000 4&5-Year-Old Male pace for trainer Wayne Givens and Legacy Racing of Delaware. A Sportsmaster-Leterrippotatochip gelding, Muffmaster won for the third time this meet. Rocknroll Power (Corey Callahan) was next with River Thames (Jim Morand) the show finishers. Scalped, a six-year-old Bettor's Delight-Spirit Of The West horse owned by trainer Brenda Teague and driven by Montrell Teague won the third co-feature posting a 1:52.2 triumph. Sweet Talkin Satin (Davis) was runner-up. Portrait (Art Stafford Jr.) closed well for third place. Tony Morgan and trainer Joe Skowyra had two winners each. Dover Downs is dark on Friday and Saturday. Live racing resumes Sunday, post time is 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday racing begins at p.m. 4:30 p.m. When at the track, watch the live races and enjoy dining in the Winners Circle Restaurant's acclaimed Harness Racing Buffet. Call 302-674-4600 for reservations. Simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred racing is available daily from 12 Noon until 12 Midnight at Dover Downs where there is no charge for parking and admission. Reservations are suggested for the Winner's Circle Restaurant and for those planning to stay at the 4-star Dover Downs Hotel. Call 302-674-4600. Marv Bachrad

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