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Freehold, NJ --- Drinkin Again picked up another harness racing victory at Freehold Raceway on Saturday (March 27), winning the Preferred Handicap Pace for his third win in his last four starts.   Last week, Drinkin Again won an upper-level conditioned pace at 35/1, coming from behind to win by a nose. Off that win, he was the 2/1 second choice in the field of seven for the Preferred Handicap. Leaving from post position five, driver Eric Abbatiello dropped him into the three-hole, close to early leaders Dongal Rundlscrk N and Lively Rocket. Although Drinkin Again was anxious to move, Abbatiello stayed patient and kept him inside early on.   Just after the half-mile, Vapour N began to gain ground off the pylons, and Abbatiello decided the moment was right and flushed Drinkin Again to the outside. Nearing three-quarters, Drinkin Again poked a half-length in front of Dongal Rundlscrk N, and took control entering the stretch. Although Vapour N delivered a stiff challenge late, the wire came in time for Drinkin Again, who won by a neck. The final time for the mile was 1:53 3/5.   DRINKIN AGAIN REPLAY     Drinkin Again is owned and trained by Phil Jasper. In his career, Drinkin Again has won 20 times from 167 starts, with earnings of more than $240,000.   Vapour N, Dongal Rundlscrk N, Vasari N, Lively Rocket, Outkast Blue Chip, and Tisadream N rounded out the order of finish.   Live racing at Freehold resumes on Friday, April 2, starting at about 12:30 PM EDT.   For full race results, click here.   From Freehold Raceway      

Freehold, NJ --- The weather was warm at Freehold Raceway this Friday (March 12), and harness racing driver Eric Abbatiello was sizzling. He piloted home six winners on the 11-race card.   The highlight of his day came in the featured Preferred Handicap trot, where he drove Casino Cutie It to a 13/1 upset win. He rated her in fourth place in the early stages, while Life Well Lived set the early fractions. As they passed the five-eighths point, favored Kinda Lucky Lindy moved first-over to challenge the leader, and Abbatiello grabbed cover with his mare.   At the top of the stretch, he flipped Casino Cutie It three-wide, and she stormed down the center of the track for the victory. The final time was 1:56.1 over a fast track.   Casino Cutie It has now won twice this year, with both of her wins coming at Freehold. She's owned by Howard Taylor and trained by Tom Fanning.       That win was Abbatiello's fifth on the day. He began the day a winner, guiding Sheer Talent to victory in race 1 for trainer Bruce Lauer. He then rattled off a natural hat trick a few races later, scoring in race 4 with Dalton Did It, trained by Ted Suleski, race 5 on Lionhead, for owner/trainer Terry Morgan, and race 6 with Rock Flush, for owner/trainer Mike Fiumenero. In race 11, Abbatiello wrapped up the day a winner, steering Johnny Fly Swatter to victory for trainer David Wiskow.   Abbatiello now has 21 wins on the Freehold season. With his big day, he surged from seventh to fourth in the driver standings.   Friday's card also saw a milestone win for owner/trainer Marianna Monaco. She sent out Powerful Pulse to victory in race 9, with Joe Bongiorno in the sulky. Monaco has been driving since 2019, and began training horses earlier this year.   Live racing continues at Freehold on Saturday (March 13) starting at 12:30 PM.   For full results, click here.   From Freehold Raceway  

Freehold, NJ --- Harness racing trainer Tom Fanning and driver Eric Abbatiello each had a big day at Freehold Raceway on Saturday (February 27), as they each won three races on the 13-race card.   Fanning won with all three of his starters. He scored his first win in race 6, as Tisadream N just got up for the victory as the 2/5 favorite over Dreamfair Charro. Austin Siegelman had the winning drive. In the 7th race, he scored an upset, as 31/1 mare Ashtini defeated the boys in a gate-to-wire score. Fanning teamed up with Abbatiello on that one. In race 9, Fanning completed the hat trick, as Betting Exchange went gate-to-wire as the favorite. Siegelman once again had the drive.       Fanning surged up the Freehold trainer standings with his big day. He now has five wins on the meet from fourteen starters, making him one of ten trainers with at least five wins at the current meet.   Abbatiello began the day on a winning note, sweeping the early double. He won race 1 on Arque Hanover, who he also co-owns and trains. In the second race, he got up to win a photo with RM Blackhawk, for owner/trainer Brandon Mongiello. He teamed up with Fanning on Ashtini in race 7, to complete the hat trick.   Live racing at Freehold resumes on Friday, March 5, starting at about 12:30 PM.   For full results, click here.   From Freehold Raceway  

Freehold, NJ --- As the weather cools down at Freehold, harness racing driver Eric Abbatiello has begun to heat up. After a big day last Saturday, he kept the momentum going on Friday (December 18), with a four-win afternoon.   He got the day started on the right note, taking the first race on Four Staces, for trainer Jim Brown. He completed the early double in race 2, winning on Lynnly's Mom, for trainer Tom Shay.   After taking race 3 off, Abbatiello picked up the hat trick in the 4th race on Stonebridge Honey, moving her to the front after the half and drawing off for trainer Bruce Lauer. Abbatiello completed the grand slam in race 5, as Lionhead surged up the passing lane and won for trainer Terry Morgan.     With three days left in the 2020 Freehold season, Abbatiello has 70 wins, good for second place. Austin Siegelman continues to lead the way, with 73 victories.   Live racing continues at Freehold on Saturday (December 19), with a first post time of 12:30 PM.          

Freehold, NJ --- Good things have been coming in multiples recently for members of the Freehold Raceway harness racing driving colony. Eric Abbatiello won five races on the card Saturday (December 12), making this the sixth straight day a driver has won at least four races.   Abbatiello got his first winner of the day in race 3, guiding Black Dan to victory for trainer Dave Wiskow. He gave Albert a Scootin a great pocket-sitting trip in the sixth race, for trainer John Bavosi.   He got the hat trick on 20/1 shot Sword ofthe Spirit in race 10, for trainer Lewis Nunes, and completed the grand slam with front-running Natural Leda in race 11.   Mike Russo was the winning trainer.   Abbatiello capped his big day in the 12th race, as Brass Monkey went gate-to-wire for trainer Randy Taft.     Brass Monkey   Abbatiello's big day puts him in the thick of the driving race, with four days left in the 2020 Freehold season. He now has 66 wins on the meet, putting him in a tie for second with Vinny Ginsburg. Austin Siegelman leads the way, with 71 victories.   Live racing resumes at Freehold on Friday (December 18), with a listed first post time of 12:30 PM. There will be a pair of carryovers on the card: the early pick 4 has a carryover of $1,515.96, while the pick 5 has a carryover of $736.43.   Publicity Freehold Raceway      

Freehold, NJ --- Young New Jersey-sired trotters will have the spotlight at Freehold Raceway this Friday (September 25), with five stakes races in the New Jersey Sire Stakes- Standardbred Development Fund series.   The card is headlined by the $56,000 final for 3-year-old colt & gelding trotters, scheduled as the eighth race. Kasha V seeks his fourth win in a row, after wins in the first two legs of the series and the Garden State Trot. Austin Siegelman will once again be in the sulky, for owner Theologos Moutafis and trainer Tom Corelli. He drew post position five.   He will encounter several rivals who figure to give him a fight. Fly Eagle Fly just missed in the first leg of the series two weeks back, then was a non-threatening third last out. He'll get a driver change to Jim Marshall, for trainer Marcus Melander.   Gerard won the other division of the second leg last week, edging out AP Hall of Trix, who also returns here. Eric Abbatiello and James DeLucia team up on Gerard, while Pat Berry and David Hoover drive and train, respectively, AP Hall of Trix.   Kyrie Deo was the 1/2 favorite in the second leg last week, but lost by just 3/4 of a length for trainer John Butenschoen and trainer Corey Callahan. He'll seek revenge from post position six.   The card also features two divisions of the NJSS-SDF for 2-year-old colt & gelding trotters, and two more for 2-year-old trotting fillies. The first division of the former series will be held as a non-betting race, at 12:15 PM. The second division also has five horses, and is scheduled as the third race.   The first division for the fillies features a field of seven, and will go as the seventh race. Ake Svanstedt will send out a duo, in Broad Strokes and Illuminata. The former looks like the stronger half of the two, having finished fifth in the New York Sire Stakes Final at Yonkers Raceway last out.   The second division is race nine on the card, and has six horses. Svanstedt is also represented in this division, with Wet My Whistle. She finished third in a leg of the Kindergarten last week at the Meadowlands.   Post time for the first race on Friday at Freehold is at approximately 12:30 PM.   From Freehold Raceway    

Freehold, NJ --- Bronskimackenzie A grabbed cover and slingshot wide to win Freehold Raceway's Friday (March 6) feature, the Fillies & Mares Preferred Handicap Pace.   Sent off at 5/1 in the seven-horse field, driver Eric Abbatiello had her in midpack early on, then began to peek to the outside as they neared the half-mile point. It looked as if he would send her first-over, but when Jim Marshall pulled with When Sharks Fly, Abbatiello elected to sit second-over.   The move worked like a charm. Nearing three-quarters, with When Sharks Fly head-to-head with early leader Sue's Night Out, Bronskimackenzie was angled three-wide and moved to the lead easily. She pulled clear in the stretch to win by 1 1/2 lengths, stopping the clock in 1:58 over a good track.     That's the third win of the year for this Australian mare, adding to victories at Freehold and Yonkers earlier in the season. In her career, she's won ten races from 53 starts, and earned almost $95,000. Tahnee Camilleri is the winning owner and trainer.   Bronskimackenzie's win was one of three for Abbatiello on the Friday card. He also won race 1 with Bruce Lauer's Always as Fast, as well as the 5th race driving R Sam for owner/trainer Stefan Dorosz.   When Sharks Fly held on for second, while Faithful Desire rallied wide and finished third. Last Flight In N, Sue's Night Out, Askmysecretary, and Fear My Shadow completed the order of finish.   Live racing continues at Freehold on Saturday, with a scheduled first post time of 12:30 PM EST.   From Freehold Raceway    

Freehold, NJ --- Freehold Raceway harness racing veteran driver, Eric Abbatiello, had a big afternoon on Saturday (February 22), booting home four winners on the 12-race program, including the feature race of the day.   Abbatiello got his first winner of the afternoon in race 2, sending Ultimate Flyer up the passing lane for the win, for trainer Mark Infante. He found the winner's circle again in the third race driving Dalton Did It for trainer Ted Suleski.   After coming up short in races 4, 5, and 7, Abbatiello completed the hat trick with Winning Linc in the $12,000 Preferred Handicap pace. Well behind early on, he closed stoutly from behind and got up to win over Newbie. Sent off at 9/1, he went the mile in 1:54 for owners D'Elegance Stable, Carmen Iannacone, TLP Stables, and Gandolfo Stable.     Following that big win, Abbatiello had one more drive, in race 9. He made the most of it, as Rockinwiththebest came rolling up the passing lane to win and complete the grand slam. The winning horse is owned and trained by Brandon Mongiello.   On the calendar year, Abbatiello now has 23 wins from 169 drives, putting him in fourth place. No one has more drives at Freehold than Abbatiello.   Live racing at Freehold resumes on Friday, with a scheduled first post time of 12:30 PM EST.   From Freehold Raceway      

Freehold, NJ --- Phil Jasper's Drinkin Again has quickly taken a liking to Freehold Raceway, with three wins over the track in his last eight races. Last out, he won the Preferred Handicap pace by half a length at 12/1. He'll seek to defend his title on Saturday (February 15), lining up against seven contenders.   Jack Baggitt will be back in the sulky on the 6-year-old, who will seek to become the first pacer to win the Freehold Preferrred Handicap twice in 2020. He'll leave from the outside post position eight. It will be interesting to see if Jack takes back, or tries to send like he did last week.   Two others drew for the outside post positions, and they'll line up directly to Drinkin Again's inside. Lyons Steel turned in a strong closing effort in his 2020 debut last week, rallying to finish fifth with a final quarter of 28 seconds. During the fall/winter portion of the Freehold season, he won the Preferred three times. Pat Lachance will leave from post position six for trainer Dennis Watson.   Winning Linc drew post position seven, for driver Eric Abbatiello and trainer Richard Johnson. He caught fire at the Meadowlands last fall, with three wins in his last four starts of the year. This will be his 2020 debut.   Smileandsaycheese, Ozone Blue Chip, Gotta Go BB, Solo Story, and Ginger Tree Marty complete the ensemble. The Preferred will go as the seventh race, with a listed post time of 2:50 PM EST.   Saturday's Freehold card also features another renewal of the American Harness Drivers Club amateur trot, which will go as the fifth race. Wygant Prince, for owner/driver Paul Minore, will seek to make it two in a row at the class.   In addition, the hottest pacer based at the track, Jackamino, will seek his fifth win in a row in the sixth race, a NW $8,000 last 5/NW 9 pace. Vinny Ginsburg will drive from post position four for trainer Taylor Gower, who also trains Wygant Prince.   The first of ten races at Freehold on Saturday will be at 12:30 PM EST.   From Freehold Raceway      

Freehold, NJ --- The layoff was no deterrent for harness racing pacer Capozzo, as he won Freehold Raceway's Saturday (January 18) featured race: the Preferred pace.   Leaving from post position five, he led in the very early stages, but was quickly overtaken by Lucan Hanover. Driver Eric Abbatiello was patient, and kept his drive in the pocket. Lucan Hanover set very slow fractions of 28.3 for a quarter and 58 for a half. All the while, Capozzo stayed just off him on the inside, while rivals began to make wide moves. Turning for home, the passing lane opened for Capozzo, and he shot through to overtake Lucan Hanover and win by half a length. The final time, over a fast but snowy track, was 1:55.2.     This race was Capozzo's first start since November 16. He qualified at Freehold last week, going the mile that day in 1:55.1. That mile showed that he was in top form, and he proved it again in the Preferred. He's owned by Howard Taylor and Thomas Finelli, and trained by Tom Shay. He paid $12.40 to win, $4.80 to place, and $2.60 to show.   Dragonology flew late and got up for second, just beating out stablemate Lucan Hanover. Ginger Tree Marty, Exit Cam, Polak, and Vapour completed the order of finish.   Live racing resumes at Freehold on Thursday, starting at 12:30 PM EST. The 9-race card has two carryovers: the early pick 4's is $1,864.94, while the pick 5 carryover is $634.94.   From Freehold Raceway  

Freehold, NJ --- Freehold Raeway has a 12-race card for Breeders' Cup Saturday (November 2), with a salty non-winners of $8,000 last five harness racing pace serving as the featured event.   Seven horses entered that contest, which has been scheduled as the seventh race. The top three finishers from the same-conditioned race on October 26 have returned. B Well drew post position six, and won last week in a 15/1 upset after a good first-over move. Eric Abbatiello will be in the bike for owner/trainer Vinny Valente.   Lyons Steel has won twice at the Freehold meet so far, and owns the fastest time of the meet, going a mile in 1:52.2 five weeks ago. The Dennis Watson trainee finished second as the favorite last week, and will seek to exert his revenge from post position seven. "Hungry Jack" Baggitt Jr, who has won eight races at the meet so far as he continues his comeback, will drive.   Barefoot Bluejeans has been in good form since shipping down from Batavia Downs, having won three of his last five races. He puled off a 17/1 upset against TrackMaster-conditioned pacers last week at the Meadowlands, and won twice at Freehold earlier in the season. Pat Berry will drive the Miriam Kraemer owned-and-trained gelding, who got post position three.   Leading trainer Nick Surick will send out two horses: The Onlyest One, who won against similar horses two starts back at Freehold, ad Gotta Go BB, shipping back from Yonkers Raceway. They drew post positions four and five, respectively.   Machiatto, a Jenn Bongiorno trainee who qualified well at Freehold last week, and Paprike Blue Chip, second or third in each of his last four races, round out the field.   The first race on Saturday at Freehold is scheduled for 12:30 PM EDT.   From Freehold Raceway  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It what was the most thrilling finish of the year at the Meadowlands, Highalator outlasted a stubborn Bettor's Edge by the smallest of noses in the Saturday night feature, the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacers. Western Joe was third. Driver Eric Abbatiello asked Highalator for early speed, and the Jenny Bier trainee responded big time, reaching the quarter in :26.2 while parked out. As the cadence slowed, Jennifer Lappe put Bettor's Edge in play, moving the veteran three wide at three-eighths to go up after the leader, who hit the half in :55.2. The battle was now on. Highalator was at the rail with Bettor's Edge right alongside as the duo dueled nose-to-nose past the five-eighths and three-quarters (1:21.3) before Highalator gained a length lead at the head of the stretch. The pair continued to go at it as Bettor's Edge inched closer through the lane and when he took one last lunge at the wire, it appeared he may have gotten there in time. But he just missed. Apparently, Abbatiello thought he got caught. He had taken Highalator back to the paddock and had to be summoned to the winner's circle after his number was posted after the judges took several minutes to examine the photo. The winning time of 1:48 was a lifetime best for Highalator, a 4-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere, who won at the Big M on June 2 in 1:48.1. He's now won seven-of-17 starts this year and 19-of-38 overall. He has lifetime earnings of $233,218 for owners Jenny Bier, Joann Dombeck and Midsize Construction. As the 4-5 favorite, Highalator paid $3.80 to win. MONEY MAKIN' MILLENNIALS: New Jersey residents Aaron Staluzzi of Wayne ($2,500), Dennis J. McKeon III ($1,500) of Keansburg and Eric Pollari of Morris Plains ($1,000) were the big winners in the Big M's free-to-enter handicapping contest for patrons 18-30 years of age. The $5,000 in prize money was sponsored by Jeff and Paula Gural's Allerage Farms. A LITTLE MORE: Andy Miller drove four winners on the card while Abbatiello had three. ... The hot temperatures led to a lightning-fast track that produced eight lifetime-best miles and one lifetime-best equaling effort. ... One lucky player was sharp enough to survive eight legs of the 20-Cent Survivor Pick 10 and collected $10,813. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $272,052. ... All-source wagering on the 12-race card totaled $1,975,759. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Friday at 7:15 p.m. ... Saturday's card gets underway at 6:35 p.m. and features eliminations for the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Shady McCoy and Kaitlyn N both displayed high speed in taking the co-features at the Meadowlands Friday night. Shady McCoy won the fifth race conditioned trot in a lifetime-best equaling 1:53.2 for trainer-driver Eric Abbatiello. The 5-year-old gelded son of S J's Caviar cleared the lead just after the quarter, and after sprinting home in :28.1, hit the wire 2¼ lengths in front of Gold Medal Swan. Zlatan was third. As the 3-1 third choice in the wagering, Shady McCoy paid $8.40 to win. Kaitlyn N took the sixth race conditioned pace for fillies and mares in a lifetime-best 1:51.1 for the Delaware-based trainer-driver team of Joshua Parker and Art Stafford Jr. The 5-year-old daughter of American Ideal sprinted to the lead in :27, rebuffed a challenge by OK Heavenly at three-quarters, and then reported home a 2-length winner. OK Heavenly held the place spot with Rockin Praline grabbing third. As the even-money favorite, Kaitlyn N returned $4.00 to her backers, winning for the fourth time in her last five starts. Earlier on the card, Hambletonian hopeful Zephyr Kronos scored as the 1-5 favorite in a lifetime-best equaling 1:53.3 for trainer-driver Jimmy Takter in a conditioned trot. Takter was unhurried with his pupil, who's now three-for-seven in his career, getting away last before making his way toward the leaders heading past the half. The son of Ready Cash continued to move well all the way to the wire, which he hit a safe neck in front of Dawson Springs. A LITTLE MORE: Nine different drivers won one race apiece on the card. ... Favorites ruled the night, as five public choices visited the winner's circle. ... All-source wagering on the nine-race program was $1,583,322. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, swelling the carryover to $255,625. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday at 7:15 p.m. Curiosity seekers will want to come out and see the seventh-annual Camel and Ostrich Derbies, which will be contested after the third (ostriches) and eighth (camels) races. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, September 29, 2016 - Harness racing driver Eric Abbatiello, who reached the 2,000-win milestone early in the day, was duly recognized by Yonkers Raceway. Proving it's nothing if not a good sport, the Raceway offered congrats to Abbatiello, who arrived at his latest plateau at Freehold Raceway. The 47-year-old Abbatiello, whose Harness Hall of Fame father, Carmine, won a few Yonkers races in his day, is actually at 2,001 wins and more than $13.2 million in career purses. His single-season bests are 212 wins (2014) and $1.6 million in purses (2008) in career which began in 1999, but wasn't 'full-time' until 2005. Yonkers' Thursday Pick 5 wager, beginning with a double-carryover of just under $8,200, attracted $25,620 of fresh funding. The winning combination of 5/1/2/1/4 paid $217.50 for every correct half-a-buck wager. Frank Drucker

Driver Eric Abbatiello collected wins in a pair of $7,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres - one by seven lengths and the other by a head - on Thursday, October 1, 2015 at the harness racing meeting at Freehold Raceway. In the first of the two trotting events, both prior to the betting card, Abbatiello guided Mountain Top [Muscle Hill] to a seven-length tally over Switchblade Hall [Muscles Yankee] in the three-year-old trotting colt division. SS Poseidon [Muscle Hill] was nearly 26 lengths back in third. The time for the mile was 2:01 flat. Noel Daley trains the colt and co-owns with Mario Mazza of New Hope, PA. Mountain Top has won two straight and has three wins, one second and two thirds in 15 starts this year. He has a lifetime bankroll of $61,570. It was more of a battle in the two-year-old trotting colt division as Stayin Strong [Muscles Yankee] won by a head over Steed [Muscle Hill]. It was seven and a half lengths to Threeupthreedown [Muscle Hill] in third. The Julie Miller trainee trotted the mile in 2:00.1. Jason and Douglas Allen of Vincentown, NJ own Stayin Strong, who has three wins, one second and two thirds in nine starts for earnings of $27,114. He has swept the three preliminary legs of the Green Acres, heading into the $25,000 final on Thursday, October 8, 2015. Carol Hodes

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 24, 2015 - Eric Abbatiello piloted both winners - Mountain Top and Stayin Strong - in a pair of $7,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres - on Thursday, September 24, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. Both were contested as non-wagering events prior to the program. In the three-year-old trotting colt division, only two went to post and Mountain Top prevailed by three quarters of a length over SS Poseidon, driven by Steve Smith, in a 1:59.2 mile. Both entrants are sons of Muscle Hill. Mountain Top, trained by Noel Daley, posted his second win of the year and has finished in-the-money in five of 14 starts this year. He was third in last week's $50,500 Charles Smith Trot. He has banked more than $55,000 lifetime for Mario Mazza of New Hope, PA and Daley. Stayin Strong [Muscles Yankee] made it two straight in Green Acres competition for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings, finishing three-quarters of a length ahead of Threeupthreedown [Muscle Hill], also driven by Smith. Inukchuk Chuck [Muscles Yankee] was third by three and a half lengths. While Steed [Muscle Hill], the Harold Dancer, broke and finished last in the field of four. Stayin Strong, trained by Julie Miller, trotted the mile in 2:00.1. James and Douglas Allen of Vincentown, NJ own Stayin Strong who has two wins, one second and two thirds in eight starts for earnings of $23,264. The New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres continue on Friday with splits for two and three-year-old trotting fillies. Saturday's card features pacers with eight entrants in the $37,500 New Jersey Futurity, sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey, for three-year-old New Jersey-sired colts and fillies [the eighth race]. There will also be a pair of Lou Babic Memorials, sponsored by the New Jersey Sire Stakes. The $56,000 Lou Babic for two-year-old pacing fillies will be a non-wagering contest while the $85,400 Lou Babic for two-year-old pacing colts is the sixth race of the day. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

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