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Harness Racing This Week: Ben Franklin Pace, Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, Max C. Hempt Memorial and James M. Lynch Memorial finals, The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; Cleveland Trotting Classic, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; Graduate Series final, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; Miss Versatility, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario; Hanover Stakes, Balmoral Park, Crete, Ill.; and Landmark Stakes, Historic Track, Goshen, N.Y. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit spotlight will once again be on The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono this Saturday night (July 4) as the track will host four lucrative stakes finals in the $500,000 Ben Franklin for older pacers, the $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial for 3-year-old male trotters, the $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers and the $300,000 James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers. A trio of Friday night (July 3) stakes kick-off the Grand Circuit action this week with the $170,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic for older trotters, the $250,000 Graduate Series final for 4-year-old pacers and a C$40,000 leg of the Miss Versatility for older trotting mares. Also on Saturday, Balmoral Park will host $35,000 (est.) divisions of the Hanover Stake for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters, while Historic Track will card eight Landmark Stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. Complete entries for the U.S. races can be found by clicking on this link. Mohawk entries are available at this link. Last time: Last weekend's Grand Circuit action opened up on Friday night (June 26) at Meadowlands Racetrack with a $50,000 TVG Free For All trotting series leg and Obrigado made his debut in the series a winning one, scoring in impressive fashion in 1:51.3, a lifetime best performance. In his previous start, Obrigado found himself locked in throughout the mile while crying out for racing room in the stretch in a Meadowlands Open. Driver Mark MacDonald made sure that wouldn't happen this time, putting his gelding in the game early. But Obrigado had to work hard early on, parked out by DW's NY Yank, the 9-5 favorite, and the two raced in tandem past the quarter in :26.3. Shortly after the trotters turned into the backstretch, Obrigado cleared the lead and it was a lead he would not relinquish. MacDonald effectively backed his trotter down to a :55.3 half-mile before reaching three-quarters in 1:25.1. In the stretch, Obrigado simply out-sprinted the field, kicking home in :26.2 to complete the triumph. Flanagan Memory rallied to finish second with Melady's Monet overcoming traffic trouble in the stretch to finish third. Obrigado is co-owned by his trainer Paul Kelley, Linwood Higgins, William Weaver III and Stable 45. The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono hosted 11 Grand Circuit races on Saturday, all eliminations for this week's Sun Stakes Saturday card. Grabbing the headlines were the 3-year-old male pacers in the Max Hempt eliminations as Artspeak, Wiggle It Jiggleit and Wakizashi Hanover each posted victories. Artspeak set an evenly-rated pace, looked to be threatened at head-stretch, but responded gamely late to withstand Pocono Pike challenger In The Arsenal for a 1:50 triumph. The son of Western Ideal showed his class to dig down and preserve a head margin at the wire, with Pierce Hanover only another three-quarters of a length behind and also advancing. Artspeak is trained by Tony Alagna for owners Brittany Farms (also co-breeder), Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and the In The Gym Partners. Wiggle It Jiggleit bounced back nicely after his first career loss, making a move in front of the stands to the front nearing the five-eighths and going on to an in-hand four length victory for driver Montrell Teague in 1:50.1. National Seelster, 67-1, had the good fortune of the Wiggle It Jiggleit cover for a quarter-mile, then the bad luck to be left raw, but he fought home gamely to beat early pacesetter Betting Exchange by a neck for place. The winning altered son of Mr Wiggles is now 12-for-13; Clyde Francis handles the training for George Teague Jr. Inc. North America Cup champion Wakizashi Hanover completed a Hempt elim sweep for the favorites, rallying in the Pocono Pike to catch Lost For Words by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:50.4. A Bettor Hat finished third. The victorious Dragon Again gelding was guided by Tim Tetrick for trainer Joanne Looney-King and the Tri-County Stable. Complete recaps of the weekend races, including the other eight Pocono stakes eliminations, are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farm is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 223; 2. Brian Sears - 218; 3. Tim Tetrick - 213; 4. David Miller - 177; 5. Daniel Dube - 157. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 335; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 188; 3. Jimmy Takter - 160; 4. Rene Allard - 146; 5. Nifty Norman - 90. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 165.5; 2. Burke Racing - 87.5; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 79.3; 4. Allard Racing - 46.9; 5. Jeff Snyder - 42.5. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack, Balmoral Park and Yonkers Raceway. The Meadowlands will host the Graduate Series final for 4-year-old trotters, Reynolds divisions for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters, Meadowlands Pace and Mistletoe Shalee eliminations for 3-year-old colt and filly pacers, respectively, and William Haughton Memorial eliminations for older pacers; Balmoral will card Hanover Stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly pacers; and Yonkers features Lawrence Sheppard eliminations for 2-year-old colt pacers. Paul Ramlow

Freehold, NJ --- Ed Hart grew up near Goshen, N.Y., and as a teenager got his start in harness racing at the town’s racetracks, so it is no surprise he looks forward to returning with horses to Historic Track during the annual Grand Circuit meet. “I always enjoy racing at Goshen,” said Hart, who was born in Warwick, N.Y., and now lives in Middletown. “I usually race at least one horse there every year. It’s a lot of fun. A lot of people show up there and there’s a lot of excitement.” On Friday (July 3), Hart will send out Brickman in the first of two $15,000 New York Excelsior Series “A” divisions for 3-year-old male pacers at Historic Track. There are seven Excelsior events on the day’s card, with post time at 1 p.m. for the first race. The Grand Circuit weekend at Historic Track begins Thursday with New York Fair Stakes. There will be Landmark Stakes on Saturday followed by Hall of Fame Day on Sunday. Brickman was bred locally by Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc., Herbert Burns III and Stephen Demeter. That group along with Scott Lipps continues to own the gelding. Brickman is a son of Art Major out of the mare Regal Wish, and is a full brother to Just Add Vodka, a winner on the New York Sire Stakes circuit. The family also includes Dan Patch Award winners Bettor’s Delight, No Pan Intended, and Roll With Joe. “He’s a nice horse,” Hart said about Brickman, who has one win in 10 career races and a mark of 1:51.3. “He’s just had a few issues, mostly breathing, allergy issues. I think he’ll turn into a real nice race horse. He’s been a little slow in coming, but he seems to be getting better now.” Of course, an appreciation for Goshen and Historic Track is not limited to those who grew up in the area. Joann Perry -- who about seven years ago began splitting her year between her home in Hawkinsville, Ga., (winter) and upstate New York (summer) -- enjoys the atmosphere there as much as anyone. “I love it,” said Perry, who will send out Haydens Little Man in the same Excelsior division as Brickman. “We always enjoy ourselves. It’s a beautiful place and I love the town. It’s gorgeous.” The homebred Haydens Little Man, named after one of Perry’s grandsons, has won two of 19 career races. His father is American Ideal and his mother, Shady Matilda, was a world champion mare who in 2005 finished second in a Landmark Stakes at Historic Track for the Perry family. Haydens Little Man has two second-place finishes and one third in his four most recent starts. “I love the horses,” Perry said. “They end up being more family than they are an animal. We always name horses we’ve bred after family members. Hayden is 9 now, but he was the newest member of our family at the time.” She added about Haydens Little Man, “He’s done well usually on the half-mile tracks around New York, so I hope he’s his normal self.” For more about Historic Track, visit its website here. by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications 

Northeast Ohio's newest premier race, the Cleveland Trotting Classic, will go to post Friday (July 3) at Northfield Park. The Classic carries a $170,000 purse for its inaugural edition and has attracted some of the best veteran trotters in North America. The Grand Circuit race is the featured event of a stakes-laden program. The Friday harness racing card offers total purses of $647,500. Obrigado drew post two and has been named the 2-1 morning-line favorite in the Classic field by Northfield Park Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting, Dave Bianconi. Entering Friday's race off a 1:51.3 lifetime mark in the $50,000 TVG Free for All at the Meadowlands, Canadian Mark MacDonald has been named to drive the 5 year-old Boy Band gelding. Obrigado sports 31wins, including 21 consecutive victories earlier in his career, and has lifetime earnings of $421,164. DW's NY Yank is the 3-1 second choice. He drew post three for powerhouse trainer Ron Burke. The six year-old has five wins this year and 37 career victories. DW's NY Yank is a hard-hitting Open trotter that has garnered career earnings of $855,914 with a 1:51.3 mark at Pocono Downs taken in 2013. Daylon Magician is the richest in the field with $1,849,527 in earnings. The son of Kadabra drew post seven and is 6-1. The seven year-old has five wins this year and 30 lifetime scores, the richest being the $1,020,000 Canadian Trot at Mohawk Racetrack in 2011. Jack Moiseyev is the seven year-old's trainer and driver. Daylon Magician has a 1:51.1 mark at Mohawk Racetrack, trotted in 2013. The 2015 Cleveland Trotting Classic field: Horse   Sire   Driver   Trainer   M/L 1 - Count Me In by Full Count - Aaron Merriman* Ron Burke 9-2 2 - Obrigado by Boy Band - Mark MacDonald Paul Kelley 2-1 3 - DW's NY by Dilbert Hanover -  Yank Chris Page Ron Burke 3-1 4 - Awesome Valley by  - Aaron Merriman* Joseph Hundertpfund Jr. 20-1 5 - Datsyuk by Explosive Matter - Charlie Norris Charlie Norris 15-1 6 - Rompaway Galaxy by Rompaway Wally - Aaron Merriman* Krista Harmon 12-1 7 - Daylon Magician by Kadabra - Jack Moiseyev Jack Moiseyev 6-1 8 - Il Sogno Dream by Cantab Hall - Aaron Merriman* Christopher Beaver 8-1 *Driver selections will be finalized by 9:00 p.m. Tuesday evening. Powerful Undercard This year's Classic program undercard highlights 11 $40,000 Ohio Sires Stakes races featuring the best freshman filly pacers and trotters in the Buckeye State. There will be six divisions of filly pacers and five filly trot stake races going to post. Superfecta wagering has been added to Friday's 11th race, the Classic feature. A $10,000 Guaranteed Pick 4 has also been added and covers races eight through 11. First race post time is 6:00 p.m. In addition to superior racing action, Battle night will also offer guests a buffet in Lady Luck's clubhouse dining room. The buffet is just $19.95. Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 330-467-4101. Guests who want to be close to all of the racing action can stop by the grandstand apron for a plethora of FREE fanfare activities. These attractions include a t-shirt toss from the winner's circle by the successful driver of each race, driver meet-and-greets and commemorative poster signings throughout the evening, Harness Racing Bingo offering over $1,000 in cash and prizes, country band Six String Cowboy performing on the apron from 6:00 till 10:00 p.m., and spinning of the Northfield Park Prize Wheel for cash and prizes from 8:00 till 9:30 p.m. Ayers Ratliff

The Cleveland Trotting Classic, Northeast Ohio's newest premier race, is scheduled for its inaugural edition on Friday, July 3. The Grand Circuit race is estimated to carry a purse of $180,000 and has drawn an impressive slate of 22 of the best harness racing veteran trotters in North America that are eligible to the event. Market Share leads all eligibles in earnings with $3,685,796. The six year-old, although winless this year in three starts, has 25 lifetime victories and sports a mark of 1:50.2 at Harrah's Philadelphia. In 2012 Market Share won the $1,500,000 Hambletonian at the Meadowlands, the $1,030,000 Canadian Trot at Mohawk Racetrack, the $235,000 American National at Balmoral Park and the $108,000 Galt at Maywood Park. In 2013 Market Share won the $526,710 Maple Leaf Trot at Mohawk Racetrack, the $600,000 Breeders Crown at Pocono Downs, the $200,000 American National at Balmoral Park and the $500,000 TVG Free for All at the Meadowlands. Last year Market Share was successful in the $250,000 Maxie Lee at Harrah's Philadelphia and the $162,000 Dayton Trotting Derby at Hollywood Dayton Raceway. Daylon Magician is the other millionaire of the bunch with $1,847,324 to his credit and a lifetime mark of 1:51.1 at Mohawk Racetrack. The seven year-old has 30 lifetime wins, the richest being the $1,020,000 Canadian Trot at Mohawk Racetrack in 2011. The trotter already has five wins this year and has not been worse than third in his seven starts so far in 2015. DW's NY Yank just won a $26,000 Open Handicap at the Meadowlands. That triumph increased his seasonal win tally to five and lifetime victories to 37. The six year-old hard-hitting Open trotter has garnered career earnings of $853,414 and sports a 1:51.3 mark at Pocono Downs taken in 2013. Il Sogno Dream, in rein to Northfield Park's runner-up leading driver, Aaron Merriman, scored in his last outing in a $25,000 Open Trot at Scioto Downs. He has won two of four starts this year. The four year-old has earned $488,101 with 10 lifetime victories and a 1:52.2 mark at Scioto Downs in May of this year. Natural Herbie also posted a win in his most recent race, a $15,000 conditioned event at Hoosier Park. The five year-old has 25 lifetime wins including the $200,000 Indiana Sire Stake final in 2012 and 2013 and the $250,000 International Trot at Yonkers Raceway in 2014. Natural Herbie has $770,991 in career earnings and a mark of 1:51.4 at the Meadowlands. Friday's Cleveland Trotting Classic will be well-supported with an undercard featuring multiple $40,000 divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes for freshman filly pacers and trotters. Numerous fan-friendly attractions are on tap, including a t-shirt toss from the winner's circle by the successful driver of each race, driver meet-and-greets and commemorative poster signings throughout the evening, Harness Racing Bingo offering over $1,000 in cash and prizes, country band Six String Cowboy performing on the apron from 6:00 till 10:00 p.m., and spinning of the Northfield Park Prize Wheel for cash and prizes from 8:00 till 9:30 p.m. Lady Luck's Clubhouse Restaurant will be offering a $19.95 picnic-themed buffet special. Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 330-467-4101. First race post time for the inaugural Cleveland Trotting Classic card is 6:00 p.m. Parking and Admission are always FREE at Northfield Park. Ayers Ratliff

Harness Racing This Week: TVG Free For All Trot, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Ben Franklin Pace, Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, Max C. Hempt Memorial and James M. Lynch Memorial eliminations, The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit spotlight will shine on Meadowlands Racetrack on Friday (June 26) with a $50,000 leg of the TVG Free For All Championship Series for older trotters. A field of six will go to the post in race 6. The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono will host four sets of stakes eliminations on Saturday (June 27). There will be three eliminations in the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial for 3-year-old colt trotters, the Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old colt pacers and the James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers. The Ben Franklin for older pacers will be raced in a pair of eliminations. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Last weekend's Grand Circuit action was highlighted by the $810,000 Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old male pacers at Mohawk Racetrack. Wakizashi Hanover, driven by Tim Tetrick, sat a perfect two-hole trip behind the pacesetting heavy favorite and previously unbeaten Wiggle It Jiggleit, before charging by the leader in deep stretch to capture the North America Cup, this past Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack, in 1:48. Wakizashi Hanover, purchased for only $23,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale in 2013, is owned by a group of Nova Scotians, based in Truro, and trained by Joann Looney-King. The Cup was his fifth and biggest win in six starts this year, after taking two of six last year. As expected, Wiggle It Jiggleit, driven by 24-year-old Montrell Teague for his father, owner George Teague, went immediately to the front, putting down fractions of :25.1 (equaling the fastest Cup first quarter), :53.3 for the half and 1:21 for three-quarters. But right on his tail throughout was Wakizashi Hanover, who was then angled out in mid-stretch and wore down the leader for the mild surprise by three-quarters of a length. Betting Exchange came on for third, three lengths behind the winner, while In The Arsenal, another elim winner from last week, was fourth. Bee A Magician, the 2013 Horse of the Year, made her rivals disappear down the stretch, scoring an effortless 4-3/4 length victory over longshot Charmed Life in the $220,320 Armbro Flight final for filly and mare trotters, part of a star-studded stakes undercard on Pepsi North America Cup night. Bee A Magician and driver Brian Sears, sent postward the overwhelming 1-5 choice, popped out from fourth and took over from Classic Martine after the half was reached in :56.4. From there, after opening six lengths while getting to the three-quarters in 1:24.2, it was just a question of how far the 5-year-old mare would win by, as she clipped a fifth of a second off the stakes record set by Buck I St Pat in 2010, completing the mile in 1:51.4. Classic Martine held on for third with Shake It Cerry fourth. Bee A Magician was winning her 37th race in 54 starts and has now earned almost $3.2 million for trainer Nifty Norman and owners Melvin Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farm is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1t. Yannick Gingras - 208; 1t. Brian Sears - 208; 3. Tim Tetrick - 195; 4. Daniel Dube - 157; 5. David Miller - 145. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 323; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 188; 3t. Rene Allard - 145; 3t. Jimmy Takter - 145; 5. Nifty Norman - 90. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 165.5; 2. Burke Racing - 85.75; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 77.55; 4. Allard Racing - 46.6; 5. Jeff Snyder - 42.5. Looking ahead: Next weekend Grand Circuit action will be taking place at six different tracks. Pocono will have the finals for the Ben Franklin (older pacers), Earl Beal Memorial (3-year-old trotters), Max Hempt Memorial (3-year-old pacers) and James Lynch (3-year-old filly pacers); Northfield Park will host the Cleveland Trot Classic for older trotters; Meadowlands Racetrack will card the final of the Graduate for 4-year-old pacers; Mohawk will host a leg of the Miss Versatility for older trotting mares; Balmoral Park will offer Hanover stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters; and Historic Track will feature Landmark Stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

Harness Racing This Week: North America Cup, Fan Hanover, Roses Are Red, Goodtimes and Armbro Flight finals, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario; and The Graduate Series third leg, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit spotlight will be on Mohawk Racetrack this weekend as the Ontario oval hosts five lucrative stakes finals on Saturday night (June 20) led by the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old colt pacers. Also on the card will be the C$479,000 Fan Hanover for 3-year-old filly pacers, the C$350,000 Roses Are Red for older mare pacers, the C$272,000 Armbro Flight for older mare trotters and the C$233,000 Goodtimes for 3-year-old colt trotters. Friday night (June 19) will see Meadowlands Racetrack host the $100,000 third leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-old trotters and pacers. Two-time Dan Patch Award winner Father Patrick leads a full field of 10 in the trot, while 12 horses will race in the pace, slated for the added distance of 1-1/8 miles. Complete entries for the Mohawk races can be found by clicking on this link. Meadowlands entries can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Last weekend's Grand Circuit action was highlighted by the $175,000 Battle of Lake Erie at Northfield Park. Harness racing's longest shining star, Foiled Again, became the first three-time champion of the Battle of Lake Erie when he crossed the wire a winner on Friday (June 12). Approaching the start the 11-year-old was already the richest Standardbred of all-time and became the first horse to earn in excess of $7 million with his triumph. Foiled Again (Dragon Again-In A Safe Place) is owned by the partnership of Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and JJK Stables. He is trained by Ron Burke, who called upon Matt Kakaley to drive. Foiled Again started from post five and sat fourth through the :26 opening quarter. Kakaley pulled Foiled Again in the second panel and he remained first-over through times of :53.4 and 1:21.3. Foiled Again took advantage of his chance when Luck Be Withyou, who had led throughout, went offstride entering the final turn. Foiled Again inherited the lead and fought off his competition in the stretch to win by a neck over stablemate Clear Vision, stopping the timer at 1:50.3. The win pushes Foiled Again's earnings to $7,012,531. Five sets of eliminations for this weekend's Mohawk stakes finals were also part of last week's Grand Circuit action. Leading the way were the finest 3-year-old pacing colts on the continent facing off in three Pepsi North America Cup eliminations. Wiggle It Jiggleit, In The Arsenal and Wakizashi Hanover all turned in victories heading into this weekend's C$1 million final. The first Cup elimination saw the undefeated Wiggle It Jiggleit, as expected, prevail with yet another dominant performance. Sent postward the overwhelming public choice in the field of eight, the son of Mr Wiggles kept his unblemished record intact, now a perfect 11-for-11, 10 starts of which have come this year already in a very busy campaign. Wiggle It Jiggleit, with driver Montrell Teague, the son of the horse's owner George Teague Jr., busted out from the start, getting the first quarter in :26.2, then slowing to a crawl while still in front, reaching the half in a pedestrian :56.3. From there, it was all over, as the pacesetter turned back a brief challenge from Arque Hanover, getting to three-quarters in 1:23.3, before coasting home by six lengths in 1:49.2. Arque Hanover hung on for second, with Yankee Bounty third and Hurrikane Ali, who had chased the leader early, dropping to fourth. Following the impressive first elim win by Wiggle It Jiggleit, it was heavily-favored In The Arsenal's turn to show his firepower. And he did, but just barely. With Brian Sears at the controls, In The Arsenal tracked from fourth for most of the mile, as Go Daddy Go took the field through a quarter in :26.3, the half in 54.4 and three-quarters in 1:22.3. The son of American Ideal had powered up to challenge the leader off the far turn, struck the front in early stretch, then had enough left to hold off a raft of pursuers, including Penji Hanover, who finished second, a half-length behind, with Good Friday Three third and Revenge Shark fourth, in 1:49.4. With the win, In The Arsenal remained unbeaten in four starts this year, including the rich Rooney final at Yonkers. He has taken 10 of 15 overall for trainer Kelvin Harrison. Wakizashi Hanover and driver Tim Tetrick pulled off an upset in the third and final Pepsi North America Cup elimination, roaring from well back and rolling to a 1-3/4 length win over the 1-5 choice Artspeak. A winner in three of his four outings this year prior to the elimination, the son of Dragon Again got the job done in a career best 1:49.2. Trained by Joann Looney King, Wakizashi Hanover was sixth and widest turning for home before turning on the jets and powering past the leaders. While no match for the winner, Artspeak, last year's 2-year-old pacing colt champion in both Canada and the United States, came on for second, as pacesetter Betting Exchange hung on for third. Split The House wound up fourth. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farm is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 203; 2. Brian Sears - 188; 3. Tim Tetrick - 165; 4. Daniel Dube - 157; 5. David Miller - 135. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 321; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 188; 3. Rene Allard - 135; 4. Jimmy Takter - 130; 5. Nifty Norman - 70. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 165.5; 2. Burke Racing - 85.25; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 77.05; 4. Allard Racing - 43.3; 5. Jeff Snyder - 40. Looking ahead: Next weekend will see Grand Circuit action taking place at Meadowlands Racetrack and Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. The Meadowlands will host a leg of the TVG Free For All series for older trotters on Friday (June 26), while Pocono will have eliminations for the Ben Franklin (older pacers), Earl Beal Memorial (3-year-old colt trotters), Max Hempt Memorial (3-year-old colt pacers) and James Lynch (3-year-old filly pacers) on Saturday (June 27). Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

This Week's harness racing: Battle of Lake Erie, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; and Armbro Flight, Goodtimes, North America Cup, Fan Hanover and Roses Are Red eliminations, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action this week begins on Friday (June 12) at Northfield Park with the $175,000 Battle Of Lake Erie for older pacing horses. Mohawk Racetrack will also host Grand Circuit racing on Friday with two C$35,000 eliminations in the Armbro Flight for trotting mares and two C$30,000 eliminations in the Goodtimes for 3-year-old trotting colts. The Saturday (June 13) card at Mohawk features a trio of C$50,000 eliminations for the North America Cup for 3-year-old pacing colts and two C$35,000 eliminations in the Roses Are Red for pacing mares and the Fan Hanover for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Complete entries for the Northfield Park race can be found by clicking on this link. Mohawk entries can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Last weekend's Grand Circuit action was highlighted by the $200,000 Charlie Hill Memorial for older trotters at Scioto Downs. Bee A Magician, driven by Brian Sears, dug deep to win the Hill Memorial in 1:53.3 on Saturday night (June 6). Sent off as the favorite at odds of 1-5, the 5-year-old Kadabra mare and Sears floated out from post four as DW's NY Yank left from post five and Il Sogno Dream took the lead from post two. Bee A Magician, the lone mare in the race, ranged first-over and took the lead past the first quarter. The mare had an easy second quarter in :29.2 before Natural Herbie came first-over. Near the three-quarters, Lindy's Tru Grit moved three-wide, but Bee A Magician found another gear and opened up in the stretch. DW's NY Yank was closing at the wire, but could only get within a half-length of the victor. Il Sogno Dream was third with Obrigado fourth. Bee A Magician is trained by Richard "Nifty" Norman for co-owners Mel Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee. The daughter of Kadabra now has four wins in five starts this year, with her lone loss coming to Father Patrick in the Maxie Lee Memorial at Harrah's Philadelphia. The victory vaulted Bee A Magician over the $3 million mark in career earnings. Suit And Tie was dressed for success in Saturday's Currier & Ives open division at The Meadows, promenading through the Lightning Lane to earn a narrow victory in the $119,565 stake for 3-year-old trotters. Suit And Tie had won only two of his previous 21 starts and was somewhat overshadowed by his stablemate, Boots N Chains, who also started in the Currier & Ives. Boots N Chains had to work hard for the lead, securing it at the three-eighths, and was pressured by the first-over Chef Lee. That set the stage for Suit And Tie's rally, as he poured through for Aaron Merriman and scored in a career-best 1:54.1. Shoot The Thrill, who was pushed four wide through the final turn, trotted wide gamely, but came up a nose short while Boots N Chains saved show. John Butenschoen trains Suit And Tie a daughter of Andover Hall for William Wiswell and M And L of Delaware. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Brian Sears - 168; 2. Yannick Gingras - 163: 3. Daniel Dube - 157; 4. Tim Tetrick - 132; 5. David Miller - 126. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 279; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 186; 3. Rene Allard - 130; 4. Jimmy Takter - 95; 5. Nifty Norman - 60. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 164.5; 2. Burke Racing - 73.55; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 65.35; 4. Allard Racing - 41.6; 5. Jeff Snyder - 40. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place at Mohawk and the Meadowlands next weekend. Mohawk will host its five stakes finals, led by the C$1 million North America Cup, on Saturday night (June 20), while the Meadowlands will card the third leg of The Graduate Series for 4-year-old open pacers and trotters on Friday (June 19). Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

Goshen Historic Track, where it all started and where it still is today, is gearing up for it 178th season of exciting harness racing and 2015 will mark the 105th year of Grand Circuit Racing at “the Cradle of the Trotter”. This year will also be the 54th consecutive season of matinee racing over the famed double oval at Historic Track. Matinee racing commences Sunday, June 7th with the first of three matinee programs and matinee racing will continue on the consecutive Sundays of June 14 and June 21.. Post times for all three matinee race cards will be at 1p.m.. Grand Circuit Racing begins on Thursday, July 2nd and will feature New York Sire Stakes County Fair Races followed on Friday, July 3rd with the New York State Excelsior Series for pacers.  Then on Saturday, July 4th the Landmark Stakes for 2 and 3 year olds along with the C.K.G. Billings Amateur Trots and the Catskill Amateur Drivers Club Paces will be presented. Featured  Sunday, July 5th are sophomore trotters in the New York State Excelsior Series along with a race under saddle for horses and riders that have qualified during any one of the three June matinee programs. Also slated on the card that afternoon is the annual Hall Of Fame Trot with various members of Harness Racing’s Hall of Fame at the controls which has always been a fan favorite.  And after the race the Hall of Famer's will be available for photos and autographs.  Post times for Grand Circuit action will also be at 1pm. Then that evening the annual Hall of Fame Banquet will again be held under the tent on the lawn of the Harness Racing Museum. Once again, Historic Track will sponsor a golf outing, this year on Monday, June 29, at the Golf Club at Mansion Ridge on 1292 Orange Turnpike in nearby Monroe, NY. For further information on the golf outing or to sign-up please call the Historic Track office at 845-294-5333. John Manzi

Harness Racing This Week: Art Rooney eliminations, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Betsy Ross, Jerry Taylor and Maxie Lee Memorial, Harrah’s Philadelphia, Chester, Pa.; and The Graduate first leg, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit will take place at three locations this week. Action begins on Saturday (May 23) as Yonkers Raceway will hold a pair of $40,000 eliminations in the Art Rooney Pace for 3-year-old males. On Sunday afternoon (May 24), Harrah’s Philadelphia will host the $150,000 Betsy Ross for older female pacers, the $150,000 Jerry Taylor for older male pacers and the $150,000 Maxie Lee Memorial for older trotters. Memorial Day Monday (May 25) at Tioga Downs will feature the $50,000 (est.) first leg of The Graduate Series for 4-year-old open pacers and open trotters. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: While there is a long history of brilliant mares defeating the older horses at the Free For All trotting level in harness racing, it had never happened in the Arthur J. Cutler Memorial. That all changed on a rainy Saturday night (May 16) at The Meadowlands. Bee A Magician, the overwhelming 4-5 favorite, did what had yet to be done as she emerged victorious, winning the $183,650 Cutler final in 1:51.2. She became the first mare in the 17-year history of the race to win the historic event. Driver Brian Sears put his mare on the front end at the half-mile marker and she coasted to an easy win by two lengths. Wind Of The North finished second with Melady’s Monet third. It was the same result as the week prior in the prep for the Cutler. Sears was very proud of Bee A Magician after the race. “She’s just such a pleasure,” said Sears. “Last year was tough for her, there was a lot of traveling and it was a long season. But right now, she is just really fresh and really sharp. It is hard to keep them this sharp all year long, but hopefully she keeps going forward.” Bee A Magician won for the 34th time in 50 lifetime starts and her lifetime earnings surpassed $2.86 million. She is trained by Nifty Norman for owners Mel Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee. All Bets Off lived up to his 3-5 favorite status to win the $188,057 Confederation Cup for 4-year-old pacers on Sunday night (May 17) at Flamboro Downs. Driven by Matt Kakaley for trainer Ron Burke, All Bets Off followed up his track record performance in last week’s elimination with a 1:51.3 front-end score in Sunday’s rich final. In the final quarter, All Bets Off put aside the first up bid of Ideal Cowboy and created separation on Limelight Beach to cruise home and score a 1-3/4 length victory in 1:51.3. Bettorever came from eighth at the three-quarter pole to finish second, while Big Boy Dreams finished third. Limelight Beach and Ideal Cowboy picked up the final two checks, as they finished fourth and fifth. A son of Bettor's Delight, All Bets Off now has two wins in three starts this season for owners Burke Racing Stable LLC, Frank Baldachino, The Panhellenic Stb Corp. and the Estate of Rosemary J. Shelswell. The 4-year-old pacer picked up his 17th career win Sunday evening and pushed his bankroll to more than $1.2 million. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Daniel Dube – 145; 2. Yannick Gingras – 126; 3. Jason Bartlett – 123; 4. George Brennan – 92; 5. Brian Sears – 88. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke – 208; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. – 161; 3. Rene Allard – 125; 4. Mark Silva – 45; 5. Tony O’Sullivan – 32. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing – 144.5; 2. Burke Racing - 56.05; 3. Weaver Bruscemi – 53.55; 4. Allard Racing – 41.6; 5. Jeff Snyder – 35. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place at two different racetracks next weekend. The Raceway at Western Fair District will host the Molson Pace on Friday (May 29) and Yonkers Raceway offers the Art Rooney and Lismore finals on Saturday (May 30). by Paul Ramlow, publicity director, The Grand Circuit 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015 - Harness Racing This Week: Arthur J. Cutler Memorial and TVG Series Pace, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; Confederation Cup final, Flamboro Downs, Dundas, Ontario; and Miss Versatility first leg, Mohawk Racetrack, Campbellville, Ontario. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Meadowlands Racetrack this week will feature the $183,650 Arthur J. Cutler Memorial for older trotters and the $50,000 TVG Series for older pacers on Saturday (May 16). Heading into the early part of next week, Flamboro Downs will host the C$226,575 Confederation Cup final for 4-year-old open pacers on Sunday (May 17), while Mohawk will host their first Grand Circuit race of the year on Monday (May 18) with the C$40,000 (est.) first leg of the Miss Versatility Series for older trotting mares. Complete entries for the Meadowlands races can be found by clicking on this link, while the Flamboro and Mohawk races can be viewed on this link. Last time: Meadowlands Racetrack was the site for most of the Grand Circuit action this past weekend and the prep for the Arthur Cutler Memorial took center stage. If the first two starts of her 2015 campaign are any indication, Bee A Magician will be a force to be reckoned with once again. On Saturday night (May 9) at The Meadowlands, she not only defeated the boys in the $50,000 Cutler Prep, she destroyed them. Escaping at 12-1, despite coming off a track record performance at Yonkers, Bee A Magician was dismissed by the punters from post position 10. Off the gate, driver Scott Zeron asked his champion mare for a little speed, but his plan wasn't to make the lead. Bee A Magician did lead at the first point of call, which she reached in :27.4, but she would relinquish that lead to DW's NY Yank, who briefly went off-stride at the start. The Ron Burke-trainee would lead the field past the half-mile in :55.4. Bee A Magician continued to draft in the pocket behind the leader past three-quarters in 1:24.3. But from there, the mare made her move. Bee A Magician opened up daylight in the stretch and was a geared down and ultra-impressive winner in 1:51.3. Wind Of The North rallied well to finish second, with Melady's Monet holding onto third despite a tough first-over trip. The magnificent mare is owned by Melvin Hartman, Marvin Katz and David McDuffee and is trained by Nifty Norman. For Bee A Magician, it was her 33rd victory from 49 career starts. Her earnings continue to close in on $2.8 million. All Bets Off and Let's Drink On It scored impressive victories Sunday night (May 10) at Flamboro Downs in the eliminations for the Confederation Cup. A group of 16 4-year-old pacers were split into two $16,600 eliminations to determine the field for next Sunday's C$226,575 Confederation Cup final. In the first elimination, All Bets Off established a new Flamboro Downs track record with a dominant 1:50.4 victory. All Bets Off paced away from his competition in the final quarter to score a 3-1/2 length victory. Bettorever, who was seventh at the three-quarter pole, was able to split his way between rivals on the final turn to finish second, while National Debt and Big Boy Dreams finished third and fourth, securing spots in the final. All Bets Off's clocking of 1:50.4 set a new track record for an older pacer, shaving a fifth of a second off the previous mark of 1:51 set in 2007 by Rare Jewel. A son of Bettor's Delight, All Bets Off is trained by Ron Burke for the ownership group of Burke Racing Stable, Frank Baldachino, The Panhellenic Stb Corp. and the Estate of Rosemary J. Shelswell. Let's Drink On It got a perfect second-over trip to score an impressive five length victory in the second elimination. Driver Billy Davis Jr. sent Let's Drink On It three-wide at the three-quarter pole to sweep around the leaders and the Joe Seekman trainee responded by pacing off to an easy victory in 1:51.4. Somewhere Fancy came on late to finish second, while Ideal Cowboy and Limelight Beach qualified for the final by finishing third and fourth, respectively. A son of Art Official, Let's Drink On It now has two wins in four starts in his 4-year-old season. He is owned by Tina Seekman, Larry Bond, Hal Hewitt and Vincent Boido Jr. Sunday's elimination victory gives Let's Drink On It 15 career wins and pushes his bankroll to $625,389. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Daniel Dube - 145; 2. Jason Bartlett - 123; 3. Yannick Gingras - 106; 4. George Brennan - 92; 5. Tim Tetrick - 87. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 188; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 154; 3. Rene Allard - 125; 4. Mark Silva - 45; 5. Tony O'Sullivan - 32. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 138.5; 2t. Burke Racing - 53.55; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 53.55; 4. Allard Racing - 41.6; 5. Jeff Snyder - 35. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place at Yonkers Raceway, Harrah's Philadelphia and Tioga Downs next weekend. Yonkers Raceway offers eliminations in the Art Rooney and Lismore on Saturday (May 23); Harrah's Philadelphia will hold the Betsy Ross for pacing mares, the Jerry Taylor for pacing horses and the Maxie Lee Memorial for trotters on Sunday (May 24); and Tioga Downs will host the first leg of The Graduate for 4-year-old pacers and trotters on Memorial Day Monday (May 25). Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

With The Championship Meet upon us, The harness racing Grand Circuit took center stage on Friday night at The Meadowlands. The three year old filly pacers contested the $43,106 W.N. Reynolds Memorial. On paper it was a very competitive field of seven and it played out that way on the racetrack. Bettor Be Steppin, sent off as a very slight 8/5 favorite would dictate the terms establishing a tempo of 27, 55.4 and 1:24. She turned for home with the 9/5 second choice, Happiness right on her back. Bedroomconfessions was grinding away first over, with Divine Caroline riding her cover. With just an eighth of a mile to go, these four fillies lined up across the track. Happiness found room at the pylons and sprinted through to the tune of a 26.3 final quarter to win going away in the end. Divine Caroline rallied off cover to finish up second with Bedroomconfessions third. Happiness was driven to victory by Yannick Gingras for Ron Burke who co-owns the filly with Weaver Bruscemi L.L.C. The 1:50.3 clocking was a lifetime mark for the three year old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover. The $39,816 John Simpson Memorial for three year old filly trotters was also a part of the Grand Circuit action on Friday night. Riley's Dream was bet down to 3/5 favoritism, but she would find herself locked in throughout the first three-quarters of a mile as Shaqline never found the pylons and remained parked out outside Riley's Dream throughout. In the meantime, Rules Of The Road showed tremendous early speed for Dave Miller as she reeled off fractions of 27.1, 56.1 and 1:25.1 while trotting unopposed on the lead throughout the mile. Turning for home, Rules Of The Road kicked away from the field and she was never threatened, winning in 1:54. The win was one of four on the night for Dave Miller and the winner is eligible to The Hambletonian Oaks for trainer Janice Connor who co-owns the filly with Arden Homestead Stable. A field of six top mares went to the gate in the $27,500 Fillies and Mares Open Handicap Pace. Sayitall BB was the aggressor moving to the front and leading the charge around the track, reaching the half-mile in 55.4 and three-quarters in 1:24.3. The Breeders Crown winner turned for home with the lead, but the field began to close in. With mares coming from anywhere, the mare coming fastest of all was the one closing from last, Weeper. She appeared on the far left of the screen and sprinted home to a sub-26 second final quarter to win. Weeper was driven by Brett Miller for Jimmy Takter and owners Bay Pond Racing Stable. Weeper is eligible to all the major stakes for the mare pacers at The Meadowlands, including the TVG Championships. Jerseylicious returned a winner on Friday night at The Meadowlands, winning an upper level condition event for fillies and mares pacers. Sent off as the overwhelming 1/5 favorite Jerseylicious secured a pocket trip behind the speedy That Woman Hanover. But Dave Miller decided it was time to move with three-eighths of a mile to go and he pulled the pocket with Jerseylicious, securing the lead prior to the three quarter pole. From there, the five year old daughter of Western Ideal opened up several lengths and was able to fend off the late brush of Beautiful Lady to score in 1:50.4, just three-fifths off her lifetime mark. Jerseylicious is well-staked at The Meadowlands, including eligibility to the TVG Championship for the Pacing Mares, Golden Girls and The Lady Liberty. Muscle Network made it back to back wins Friday. The former Valley Victory Champion made it five wins from 13 career starts with his 1:53.3 winning performance. His earnings are now past $335,000 lifetime and he is eligible to The Graduate series which gets underway on Memorial Day at Tioga Downs. Hambletonian Eligibles were prominent on the program Friday night and a couple of them won. Saboro Hanover won a maiden event for Nifty Norman and Dave Miller. The $75,000 Harrisburg yearling was equipped with trotting hobbles and responded by sprinting a visually impressive final quarter to score in a sharp 1:54.3. Additionally, Dapper Don, making his three year old debut, scored in impressive first-over fashion in 1:55.4. The connections have a Hambletonian-ring to them, being the same that won the 2012 Hambletonian with Market Share, including driver Tim Tetrick, who was very high on the colt. "He's come a long way," said Tetrick. "He let me drive him how I wanted, let me put him where I wanted. He's matured. Current Crisis and Robert Krivelin were victories in the $15,000 GSY Amateur Final. Despite a frenzy of action that saw trotters stacked three and four wide on the first turn, Krivelin was able to secure a position near the lead where he tracked Mr Ridgetaker who was very wide early and Bambino Hall. Kriven guided his trotter to the lead past the half-mile pole and Current Crisis opened up daylight from there, soaring past three-quarters and romping to an easy triumph. Hannah Miller was forced very wide behind stalled trotters coming off the bend and finished with a flourish to be second while Jenny Melander and All About Justice checked in third. Robert Krivelin trains and drives Current Crisis for the Hero Stables. The win was the 25th in the career of the six year old trotter, sending his earnings to nearly $240,000. On the wagering front, the 11th race on the program featured the fourth largest payout in the history of The Meadowlands and the second largest trifecta of all time. It was a perfect storm, as Two Hip Dip, Donnie Darko and Lock Down Lindy, the three favorites all broke stride. Battle Mage avoided any trouble and scored the 32-1 upset. Cutup Hanover was second at 34-1 and Silverhill Volo was third at 99-1. That combination resulted in a $2 trifecta return of $62,559.60. The largest trifecta of all time came nearly twenty years ago and returned over $88,000 for a $2 return. The only larger payouts were a pick-6 that yielded over a $100,000 return and the recent $200,000 jackpot that was paid out in the Super Hi-5. The total handle of $2,597,671 was a ten-percent increase over this same Friday in 2014. Racing resumes on Saturday, with first post time at 7:15 P.M. There are carryovers in both $.20 cent Jackpot Super Hi-5 wagers, with the fifth race carryover now standing at $108,703 and the last race carryover growing to $83,532. Darin Zoccali

This week's harness racing: John Simpson Memorial Stakes, W.N. Reynolds Memorial and Arthur J. Cutler Memorial Prep/TVG Free For All Series, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Confederation Cup eliminations, Flamboro Downs, Dundas, Ont. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Meadowlands Racetrack this week begins on Friday (May 8) with the $43,106 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers and the $39,816 John Simpson Memorial for 3-year-old filly trotters. The Saturday (May 9) card at The Big M features the $50,000 Arthur J. Cutler Memorial Prep for older trotters, part of the TVG Free For All Series. Flamboro Downs on Sunday (May 10) will host C$20,000 Confederation Cup eliminations for 4-year-old open pacers. Complete entries for the Meadowlands races can be found by clicking on this link; Flamboro Downs races can be viewed at this link. Last time: Sophomore male trotters and older mares of both gaits were in the spotlight last weekend with Grand Circuit action at Freehold Raceway and Miami Valley Raceway. Habitat was a wire-to-wire winner in 1:56.4 in the Dexter Cup. Habitat made life easy for driver Yannick Gingras in Saturday's (May 2) $133,170 Dexter Cup, taking the lead after the first turn and cruising to a 3-3/4 length win over Divisionist in 1:56.4 at Freehold Raceway. A son of Conway Hall-Habit's Best, the colt is trained by Ron Burke and owned by Burke Racing, Our Horse Cents Stables, and Weaver Bruscemi. Habitat was making his seasonal debut in the Dexter Cup. He led the field through fractions of :28.2, :58.4 and 1:27.4 on his way to victory. "On the backstretch, I could tell they were coming a little bit so I just opened him up a little so I wouldn't have to rush him in the last turn," Gingras said. "He was never in doubt." Gabe The Bear Dean finished third, followed by Apostles Creed, Sixteen Encores, Ha Taylor, Broken Record and Bavaro. Grand Circuit action produced two new track records on closing day (May 3) of the 2015 meet at Miami Valley Raceway. Reigning older Mare Trotter of the Year Classic Martine powered to the fastest trotting mile in the two-year history of Miami Valley -- 1:52.2 -- in The Miami Valley Distaff. Classic Martine and Tim Tetrick rallied on the outside to win The Miami Valley Distaff in a track-record 1:52.2. Despite drawing the outside number nine post position in the $86,500 race, driver Tim Tetrick sent Classic Martine directly on her way, immediately reaching the quarter station on top in :27. At that point Tetrick let favored Shake It Cerry (Yannick Gingras) take the lead going to the :56 halfway station. Daylon Miracle (Aaron Merriman) launched a first-over attack just past the half with Charmed Life (Jody Jamieson) in tow. Daylon Miracle had a neck advantage by the three-quarters in 1:23.3 with Shake It Cerry second, Charmed Life third and Classic Martine fourth. At the top of the stretch the field fanned out with six mares still within three lengths. Classic Martine had the most trot down the lane, holding off Charmed Life, who was making a strong bid along the pylons on the inside. Daylon Miracle hung on for third. Off at 15-1 odds, the winner paid a healthy $32.20 and keyed an $81.80 exacta. Chris Oakes trains Classic Martine, who became the sport's newest million dollar earner with the victory. Yagonnakissmeornot established a new Miami Valley standard for pacing mares with her 1:50.3 triumph in the second annual $75,000 Chip Noble Memorial. Driver Daniel Dube took full advantage of drawing the innermost post position, going gate-to-wire to top Table Talk (Jody Jamieson) by a neck with Waasmula (James MacDonald) also lapped on at the finish. Rene Allard trains Yagonnakissmeornot, who is now just $45,000 shy of becoming a millionaire. Off as a lukewarm favorite, the winning 6-year-old daughter of The Panderosa returned $5.80 and headed a $72.80 exacta. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Daniel Dube - 125; 2. Jason Bartlett - 123; 3. George Brennan - 92; 4. Yannick Gingras - 86; 5. Brian Sears - 68. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 168; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 154; 3. Rene Allard - 105; 4. Mark Silva - 45; 5. Tony O'Sullivan - 32. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 138.5; 2t. Burke Racing - 43.55; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 43.55; 4. Jeff Snyder - 35; 5. Allard Racing - 34.90. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will again take place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack, with the Arthur Cutler Memorial for older trotters and the TVG Series for older pacers, while Flamboro Downs will host the Confederation Cup final for 4-year-old open pacers. Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

(May 4, 2015) - With four legs of the 2015 HANA Harness Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge presented by the Bellino Stables, DRF Harness, Hambletonian Society, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Northfield Park, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs, Buffalo Raceway announcer Michael Carter has taken an early lead with 319.70 points.   Carter managed to surge to the lead due in a large part to his performance on Saturday afternoon where he had three winners, including Lady Suffolk second division winner, Northern Obsession which paid $46.20 to win.   Carter would have gone four for four on Saturday if not for his selection in the Dexter Cup, Divisionist finishing second.  Other performers of note were Bryan Owen and Gordon Waterstone who went three for four, alas without selecting Northern Obsession.   The current standings after four legs are: Standings as of Sunday, May 3 - Leg 4     Total Points Points Earned Overall Position Pos Handicapper Prior Week This Week Total Points Last Week 1st Michael Carter  11.60 308.10 319.70 13th (tie) 2nd Gordon Waterstone 43.50 105.20 148.70 2nd 3rd Bryan Owen 39.70 107.30 147.00 5th 4th Sally Hinckley 48.20 47.70 95.90 1st 5th Derick Giwner 33.90 58.20 92.10 8th 6th Brandon Valvo 40.90 51.00 91.90 4th 7th Earl Paulson 43.20 34.90 78.10 3rd 8th Ann Stepien 11.60 65.70 77.30 13th (tie) 9th Mark Dezii 37.00 34.60 71.60 6th 10th Josi Verlingieri 33.40 31.70 65.10 9th 11th Dennis O'Hara  18.10 45.20 63.30 11th 12th Jay Hochstetler  4.20 58.60 62.80 18th 13th Rusty Nash 35.70 21.20 56.90 7th 14th Garnet Barnsdale 8.00 46.90 54.90 15th (tie) 15th Mark McKelvie 5.90 46.90 52.80 17th 16th Mark Deutsch 11.90 38.60 50.50 12th   17th Ray Garnett 31.80 18.10 49.90 10th 18th Ray Cotolo 8.00 40.20 48.20 15th (tie) 19th Bob Zanakis 0.00 37.20 37.20 19th Three new handicappers join the fray, two replacing handicappers forced to scratch due to circumstances beyond their control, while one handicapper is a new addition. Coming off the also eligible list is Bob Zanakis who is a handicapper familiar to followers of this series and Jay Hochstetler, an intern at the Horsemen and Fair World and an assistant trainer. Added to the roster is Mark Deutsch, a former owner and trainer who now enjoys handicapping harness racing primarily on the WEG circuit. As substitutes, Hochstetler takes over representing Rainhill Sanctuary, while Zanakis assumes representing Helping Hearts Equine Rescue. Mark Deutsch chose New Vocations as his rescue of choice.  Two new sponsors have joined the contest.  HANA welcomes Red Shores Charlottetown as a Silver sponsor while an Anonymous donor has signed on as a double Bronze sponsor.  Thanks to these additions, the contest handicappers are playing for a HANA Harness-record $5,700 in prize money to be distributed to the top three handicapper's selected standardbred rescues and Canadian rescues selected by the Canadian sponsors.  This coming week, there are no events but the Handicapping Challenge returns the following week for events Saturday-Monday (5/16-5/18).  For details on the specific races and other information regarding the contest, visit http://hanaharnesscontest.blogspot.com.  Allan Schott HANA Harness Coordinator Check out our contest site for the 2015 Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge. Check out HANA Harness' Blog.  

Harness Racing this week: Dexter Cup and Lady Suffolk, Freehold Raceway, Freehold, N.J.; John Simpson Memorial Stakes, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; Meadows Maturity, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; and Chip Noble Memorial and Miami Valley Distaff, Miami Valley Raceway, Lebanon, Ohio. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Freehold this week features the $133,170 Dexter Cup for 3-year-old open trotters and the $77,000 (est.) Lady Suffolk for 3-year-old filly trotters on Saturday (May 2). Meadowlands Racetrack offers the $39,416 John Simpson Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers on Friday (May 1) and the $47,124 John Simpson Memorial for 3-year-old colt pacers on Saturday (May 2). Also on Saturday, The Meadows will feature the $62,100 Meadows Maturity for older male trotters. The Sunday (May 3) card at Miami Valley Raceway will feature the $100,000 (est.) Chip Noble Memorial for older pacing mares and the $100,000 (est.) Miami Valley Distaff for older trotting mares. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: The George Morton Levy Series for open pacers and Blue Chip Matchmaker Series for open pacing mares wrapped up this past weekend at Yonkers Raceway. Domethatagain and driver Daniel Dube waited patiently for the last few yards of racing room to get ahead of the field to win the $529,000 George Morton Levy Series final for older pacers on April 25 at Yonkers Raceway in a time of 1:51.1. Domethatagain, by Bettor's Delight-Road Sign, is trained by Rene Allard and owned by Allard Racing Inc., Robert Hamather and Bruce Soulsby. The Levy win brings his lifetime earnings to $824,551. P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett) went to the lead from post eight and held that lead to the quarter (:27.2) and the half (:55.3). Past the half, Lucan Hanover (David Miller) came first up to the three-quarters in 1:23, while Domethatagain was content to wait in the pocket and sprung from that spot to win. Take It Back Terry (George Brennan), who made a long sustained bid on the outside, was second and Beach Memories (Yannick Gingras) was third. P H Supercam faded to fourth. Venus Delight and driver Jason Bartlett let Yagonnakissmeornot and driver Brian Sears do the heavy lifting for most of the mile in the $261,000 Blue Chip Matchmaker final for older pacing mares. In the final strides of the race, they came up her inside for the win in 1:52.4 by three-quarters of a length. Carolsideal and Daniel Dube, who were first over from the half on, finished third. The daughter of Bettor's Delight-Venus Killean had two earlier wins in the series and is trained by Jeffrey Bamond Jr. for Bamond Racing. It was the third win in five starts this year for the 5-year-old mare. Her career earnings are now $424,268. Daylon Miracle (Aaron Merriman) stalked 2014 Trotter of the Year Shake It Cerry from the pocket, then blew by the champ in the Lightning Lane to pull off a 5-1 upset in Friday's (April 24) inaugural edition of the $51,100 The Meadows Maturity for mare trotters. Daylon Miracle triumphed in 1:53.3, four lengths better than Cowgirl Hall, with the winner's stablemate, Anaffairtoremember, third. In the first start of her 4-year-old campaign, Shake It Cerry led the field through a snappy 1:24.3 three-quarters but tired late and faded to fourth, beaten five lengths. Classic Martine, the 2014 Mare Trotter of the Year, was buried from post nine and never got involved, finishing sixth. Bill Bercury, who owns and trains Daylon Miracle and Anaffairtoremember, called it the biggest win of his career. He had spoken of a 1-2 finish for his mares days before the race. It was a bold vision, and Bercury's mares nearly pulled it off with their 1-3 result. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Daniel Dube - 125; 2. Jason Bartlett - 123; 3. George Brennan - 92; 4. Brian Sears - 68; 5. Tim Tetrick - 62. Trainers: 1. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 154; 2. Ron Burke - 143; 3. Rene Allard - 105; 4. Mark Silva - 35; 5. Tony O'Sullivan - 32. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 138.5; 2. Allard Racing - 34.90; 3t. Burke Racing - 34.35; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 34.35; 5. Jeff Snyder - 30. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will again take place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack, with the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters, the W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers, and eliminations for the Arthur Cutler Memorial for older trotters. On Sunday (May 10), Flamboro Downs will host Confederation Cup eliminations for 4-year-old open pacers. Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

LEBANON, OH. - Miami Valley Raceway plans an assault on two world records as part of its final 2015 program on Sunday afternoon, May 3. In addition to a pair of featured Grand Circuit stake races for older trotting and pacing mares, the track plans to card a five-eighths mile dash and a one-and-a-quarter mile race with a goal of establishing new world records for those distances over a five-eighths mile oval. The current standard for the five-eighths is 1:08.1, co-owned by Anais Kicker (Meadows in 2009) and Jebswesternshake (Hazel Park in 2011). The best ever clocking over the added 1-1/4 mile distance is 2:19.4 by Boulder Creek (Dover Downs in 2006). The invitational races are open to any horse whose last start was not for a purse over $12,000. Base purse for each world record attempt race is $10,000, with an added $3000 bonus to be equally divided by the driver, trainer and owner(s) of a horse that does break the current record. Trainers of horses interested in participating in these races are asked to contact Race Secretary Gregg Keidel well in advance of the Thursday, April 30 draw for the May 3 program. Notable nominees to the $75,000 (est.) Chip Noble Memorial Stake for older pacing mares on May 3 include Color's A Virgin, Yagonnakissmeornot, Rocklamation, Carolsideal and Fancy Desire. The $85,000 (est.) Miami Valley Distaff for older trotting mares also includes a number of distinguished names including Bee A Magician, Classic Martine, D'Orsay, Daylon Miracle, Frau Blucher and Shake It Cerry. Gregg Keidel      

In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three harness racing categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend at Yonkers: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 51; 2. Jason Bartlett - 49; 3. Daniel Dube - 40; 4. George Brennan - 35; 5. Brian Sears - 19. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 71; 2. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 53; 3t. Rene Allard - 25; 3t. Tony O'Sullivan - 25; 5. Mark Silva - 15. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 46; 2t. Burke Racing - 15.9; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 15.9; 4. Jeff Snyder - 15; 5t. Allard Racing - 8.3; 5t: Yves Sarrazin - 8.3; 5t. Kapildeo Singh - 8.3. This Week: Blue Chip Matchmaker and George Morton Levy series third legs, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Yonkers this week features two $40,000 divisions on Friday (April 3) in the third round of the Blue Chip Matchmaker series for open pacing mares. The Saturday (April 4) card at Yonkers will see four $50,000 divisions in the third round of the George Morton Levy series for open pacers. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: There were three repeat winners in last week's second leg of the George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series at Yonkers Raceway. P H Supercam, Polak A and Beach Memories each made it two-for-two in the series by capturing their respective $50,000 events on the March 28 card at The Hilltop. Defending series champ P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett) used the same M-O -- sitting a three-hole and closing deep in the passing lane -- that worked so well in the 2014 finale. P H Supercam, from post position No. 4, went by a pocket-sitting Frankie's Dragon to win the first grouping by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:52.4. For second choice P H Supercam, an 8-year-old Million Dollar Cam gelding owned by Bamond Racing and trained by Jeff Bamond Jr., it was his fourth win in seven seasonal starts. The second event saw Polak A (Brian Sears) repeat what he did in the series opener, as in win the draw and make the rest of his rivals pay. Polak A took the lead just past a :27.2 opening quarter-mile and was never caught. He dug in down the stretch, holding off both Michael's Power (neck) and Foiled Again (1-1/4 lengths) in 1:52.4. Second choice Polak A, a 7-year-old Down Under son of Pacific Fella trained by Tony O'Sullivan for co-owners Frank Bellino & Sons, Frank J. Bellino and Joseph Bellino, is now two-for-two stateside and two-for-three in '15. Saturday's third Levy grouping was won by 6-5 second choice Beach Memories (Gingras). Beach Memories held off Sapphire City by a neck, with 11-10 wagering choice Mach It So a non-threatening third. For Beach Memories, a 5-year-old Somebeachsomewhere gelding co-owned by Strollin Stable, AWS Stables, King McNamara and Country Club Acres, it was his second win in five seasonal starts. There was also a repeat winner in the March 27 second leg of the Blue Chip Matchmaker Series as Carolsideal vaulted to the top of the series standings with an impressive victory. Carolsideal (Daniel Dube) owned a measured half-length lead into the lane, then widened to close the sale, winning by a couple of lengths in a season's-best 1:53. Monkey On My Wheel held second, with Anndrovette a rallying third for the second week in a row. For Carolsideal, a 6-year-old daughter of Western Ideal trained by Rene Allard for co-owners Allard Racing, Yves Sarrazin and Kapildeo Singh, it was her seventh win in eight seasonal starts. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will continue with legs of the Blue Chip Matchmaker and George Morton Levy over the next two weekends. The finals and consolations for both events will be held on April 25. Paul Ramlow Grand Circuit Publicity Director

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