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MONTICELLO, NY--- Besides offering races to many racetracks which, especially in this day and age, are welcomed to help fill their harness racing programs, the granddaddy of all amateur organizations the CKG Billings Harness Driving Association, donated to a local charity while the Billing members were competing in Canada. "We donated $1000 to a women's shelter near Mohawk while we were racing in Canada," noted Billings vice president Steve Oldford. "We presented the check in the winner's circle prior to the start of our race at Woodbine Mohawk Park on May 28th. Ever since the Billings Series was instituted in the early 1980's the competing amateurs have donated many tens of thousands of dollars to charities as well as being a major supporter of the Harness Racing Museum. John Manzi  

MONTICELLO,NY - After a CKG Billings Series Midwest regional trot at Scioto Downs last night (May 18) the longest running amateur driving series moved on to Freehold NJ for a contest over the famed harness racing double-oval at Freehold Raceway and when the results were finalized, "Tough Tony" Ciuffettelli scored an impressive victory with Better To Be Lucky in a time of 2:00.4 over a soggy racetrack. Last October Ciuffetelli purchased Better Be Lucky and since then the 6-year-old Lucky Chucky gelding has proven to be a valuable commodity after the trotter notched his fourth seasonal triumph. "I bought him as a back-up Billings horse," Ciuffetelli explained. "He's a nice horse but he occasionally gets temperamental." After leaving softly from the two-hole Ciuffetelli headed for the pylons and watched the speed duel ensue between Annie "Get Your Gun" Stoebe, with betting favorite Uriel, and "Yankee Joe" Lee's, Great Emancipator, who was on the limb fighting for command. "I was feeling good watching Anne and Joe go at it. They were going pretty swift over the muddy racetrack and I was hoping that they'd get tired ... and that's just what happened," Ciuffetteli said. With snappy early fractions of :28.2 and :58 Ciuffetteli just bided his time. He was second at the third stanza in 1:29.2 and when Better To Be Lucky cleared on the final turn he had command. "I felt pretty confident as he headed for the wire since the two favorites battled it out early, "Tough Tony" added. "I saw Tyler (Miller) coming at us but he went off-stride before the finish." "Young Tyler" Miller finished second with Masster Blue while Anne Stoebe took home the show dough with Uriel. It seems that Bettor To Be Lucky lived up to his name as he crossed the finish line 1-1/2 lengths in front of Miller's, Masster Blue. Ciuffetelli, a former corrections officer, also owns and trains the winner who returned $20.20; $7,00 and $3.60. For "Tough Tony" it marked his 54th career driving victory. by John Manzi, for the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series    

Harness racing greatest traveling roadshow, the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series, moved on to Freehold Raceway on Saturday afternoon, May 5, for a six-horse trot in the Eastern Regional Division and when the dust had settled James "Jimmy Boy" Marshall IV took home the lions share of the $6000 purse after he reined Call My Broker to a two-length triumph in a time of 1:59.3. For the 28-year-old amateur it made his seasonal debut a winning one. "I guess I was trying to emulate my dad who won three races on today's (Saturday) card,"the talented youngster said. After getting away softly from the three-hole Marshall angled to the pylons and was third as Annie "Get Your Gun" Stoebe led field by the first quarter in :29.1. Not content to let the lady dictate a slow pace with Uriel, Marshall moved his trotter to the outside and set sails for the lead but he didn't gain command until the top of the lane and then also had to contend with Lakota and driver "Coach Paul" Minore who saving all the ground while traveling along in the two- hole. When the field headed for paydirt there were three trotters across the track but Call My Broker was the strong horse and went on to a two-length victory over Lakota. Uriel was third. Call My Broker, a 4-year-old Muscle Massive gelding, is owned by Melissa Beckwith,Thomas McTygue and William Bena and is trained by Mark Bethwith. He paid $8.20;$6.00 and $3.20. It was the trotters first seasonal victory and for "Jimmy Boy" it marked his 15th career driving victory. The Billings Series moves on to the Meadowlands on Friday, May 11. by John Manzi for the Billings Harness Driving Series

Often overlooked when it comes to amateur harness racing is that a good many of the participating drivers are also owners and many race their own stock in the amateur races, especially in the granddaddy of all amateur events, the C.K.G. Billings Harness Driving Series. And furthermore, many of these gentlemen drivers employ professional trainers. Case in point: Longtime owner and sportsman, Dave "The Rave" Offenberg. On Saturday night (Nov. 4) in an east region Billings trot at Yonkers Raceway Offenberg gave his own trotter, Fiji, a picture-perfect drive and they rallied to a 1:59.2 victory over Gonna Fly and driver Steve "You're Never Too" Oldford. "I had the four hole and when the starter let us go I grabbed the lead and then surrendered it to Tony Verruso with Flirting Duesy," Offenberg said via telephone. "We were going a pretty good clip (:28.2) so I was content to sit the pocket as Tony's trotter cut the fractions and then up the backside endured a stiff challenge from Steve Oldford's Gonna Fly who eventually gained command and on the final turn and began to pull away. "When we headed for home I had daylight and Fiji proved to be the strong horse in the stretch and we went on to a length victory over Steve's trotter." Flirtin Duesy held on for the show dough. Fiji, a 4 year old Cantab Hall gelding, is owned by Offenberg's Allister Stables and trained by Eric "the Little Redman" Abbatiello. Although he has driven only 10 times this season tonight's triumph was the first of the year for Offenberg. But since he's been participating in amateur racing he had 51 career driving victories. "To me it's just a whole lot of fun being able to drive my own stock," Offenberg said. "If you can't have fun in harness racing you don't belong doing it." by John Manzi for the Billings Series

Harness racing's greatest traveling roadshow, the CKG Billings Amateur Driving Series, employed plenty of action on Sunday, October 15 when the granddaddy of all amateur racing organizations had contests at two different racetracks, one in the USA at Northfield Park in greater Cleveland, Ohio and the other in Canada at Flamboro Downs in Dundas, Ont. "Tiny Tim" Miller won the Midwest region Northfield trot with Song In My Heart while "Gentle Ben" Hollingsworth copped the Canadian event- a pace-behind with Michelle's Deuce over Flamboro's double oval. In his event Miller took no prisoners and sent his trotter down the road from the four-hole and made every pole a winning one en route to a solid 1-1/2 length triumph over Kelly "Sky" Walker's Stemilt Touch. Patricia "the Write Stuff" Miller took home the show dough with 45-1 shot, Keep The Cash. The winner, owned by Bert Hershberger and trained by JD Wengerd, was sent off the 6-5 favorite and returned a $4.40 win mutuel. For hot-handed Miller it was his fifth driving victory in just 10 seasonal starts. In the Canadian Billings pace later Sunday evening "Gentle Ben" had the prohibitive favorite Michelle's Deuce and drove like one is supposed to when deemed the best in the filed and rushed the 8-year-old Armbro Duece mare to the lead and remained unchallenged throughout coasting to an easy 1:59.1 triumph to notch the mare's 6th seasonal victory. The battle for second money saw Steve "You're Never Too" Oldford and No Teasing Me out-foot Thrift Shop with David "Poppa" Glasser to the wire to garner the place dough. Owned by the LINK Stable and trained by Corey Johnson, Michelle's Deuce paid $3.50 for win. It was Hollingsworth's first seasonal driving victory(from just 4 starts) and 21st of his limited career. Billings action continues on Monday night with two trots on the card at Mohawk Racetrack in Campbellville, Ont. by John Manzi for the Billings Series

The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is one month away with the harness racing classic trotting event scheduled for October 14, 2017 at Yonkers Raceway. Find all the latest news and videos at www.internationaltrot.com as the North American and European contenders are announced in the coming weeks. Last year’s winner Resolve has an accepted an invitation to return and defend his title. Also already accepting are France’s Dreammoko and Italy’s Twister Bi. Plus follow along on social media on the Standardbred Owners Association of New York Facebook page, and on Twitter @soaofny by using the hashtag #International2017. There will be weekly free contests for International Trot prizes and merchandise. In addition to the International Trot, Yonkers Raceway will be hosting eight New York Sire Stakes Finals on the October 14 afternoon card, each carrying a $225,000 purse.

Northfield, Ohio-- On a night that the participating amateur drivers probably would rather have sat it out because of the inclement weather still eight harness racing veterans from the Midwest region of the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series ventured to Northfield Park for a trotting contest on Wednesday evening (Sept. 6) which saw Ned "Insurance Man" Hodkinson take no prisoners and make every pole a winning one en route to a 2:00.1 victory with his own Mutinyonthebounty. After a day inundated with rain Mutinyonthebounty, second choice in the wagering, found the wet going to his liking and after starting from the pole position in the eight-horse field Hodkinson zipped him to the lead and they had command early passing the first stanza in :29.2. Despite Oneeyedmomma (Bob "Lumberman" Troyer) and Rush N Supreme (Kelly "Sky" Walker) stuck on the limb Hodkinsons charge was undeterred and trotted by the halfway point in 1:00.2 with the betting favorite, Song In My Heart and "Tiny Tim" Miller, getting a two-hole journey. As the field headed for the three quarters and parked horses faded, Miller moved Song In My Heart out to challenge for the lead but Mutinyonthebounty was able to rebuff him and then open some daylight as they rounded the final turn and headed for paydirt. In the lane it was all Mutinyonthebounty and he reported home a 1-1/2 length winner over Song In My Heart. Third place went to Upfront Chip Daddy driven by Michelle "the Belle" Ruvola. It was the second victory of the season for Mutinyonthebounty who returned a $7.20 mutuel. And for Hodkinson, who doubles as the horse's owner and trainer , it was his 56th career driving victory. by John Manzi for the Billings Amateur Driving Series

August 15, 2017 - It’s just 25 days away from the September 9th Gr. II harness racing feature The Prix d’Ete at Paris-Vincennes. This classic event is also the Trotting Masters Final and the 2017 version likely will bring about the last contest at Vincennes matching perhaps the world’s best trotter Bold Eagle against the veteran class-master Timoko. They have faced off eight times before with Bold Eagle winning seven in which Timoko was second in four of those. Their last battle was in the 2017 Elitloppet Final where Timoko scored decisively with Bold Eagle fourth. Bold Eagle, conditioned by Sebastien Guarato for owner Pierre Pilarski, has already posted two wins in the Grand Prix d’Amerique and has 15 Gr. I victories. Timoko, now age 10, is the wealthiest French trotter of all time and a two-time Elitloppet winner for trainer Richard Westerink. The Prix d’Ete is always quite a race but, this, year, it simply cannot be missed. Thomas H. Hicks  

The harness racing action in the 2016/17 Australian Pacing Gold Grand Circuit heads back to New Zealand this weekend. And the combination of Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen are looking to maintain their form after taking the opening two legs, the New Zealand Cup romp of Lazarus and the never say die performance of warrior like pacer Smolda in the Inter Dominion in Perth. The third leg of the series is the Gr.1 $250,000 Trillian Trust Auckland Cup at Alexandra Park, a 2700m stand start feature which has attracted a field of 11 high quality pacers. Last year, there were two editions of the Auckland Cup; a 2700m mobile start event in March won by Christen Me followed by a 3200m stand start edition in December which was taken out by Have Faith In Me. In recent times, the race has fluctuated from stand to mobile starts while the distance has also flipped between 2700m to 3200m. The one constant, great horses win the Auckland Cup! First staged in 1890 when Commodore took the spoils, other great names include the likes of Man O’War, Gold Jacket, Indianapolis, Captain Sandy, Caduceus, Cardigan Bay, Lordship, Robin Dundee, Stella Frost and Young Quinn among others. Modern day heroes include Delightful Lady, Gammalite, Armalight, Master Mood, Luxury Liner, Christopher Vance, Master Musician, Chokin, Christian Cullen, Holmes DG, Flashing Red, Elsu, Auckland Reactor, Monkey King, Themightyquinn and Terror To Love. And the Purdon name is synonymous with the great race. Between Roy and his sons Barry and Mark, the Purdon family has won 11 Auckland Cups. That tally could expand this year with Barry represented by three runners while the Mark Purdon/Rasmussen partnership also has three runners. Hug The Wind, Arden’s Choice and The Faithful all step out for Barry while Titan Banner, Dream About Me and Chase The Dream represent the All Stars stable. Bookies have little separating both Titan Banner and Dream About Me for favouritism. All three All Stars pacers are racing in sublime form and all boast feature race victories at their most recent starts. Victory for Titan Banner will see him shoot to the top of the Grand Circuit leaderboard following his third placing behind Lazarus and Tiger Tara in the New Zealand Cup last month. The Cran Dalgety trained Christen Me is aiming for his second Cup success and boasts solid form including his last start second behind Titan Banner in the Franklin Cup. Proven Alexandra Park feature race winner Tiger Tara is aiming for his next feature and his recent form gives him an excellent chance, a victory will see him rocket to the top of the Grand Circuit leaderboard following his second placing in the New Zealand Cup behind Lazarus in November. Fellow Christchurch trained pacer Little Rascal is looking to provide an upset and give his trainer Robert Dunn his third Auckland Cup trophy. Local stars Hughie Green and No Doctor Needed are chasing their biggest victory of their careers and connections have provided them with every opportunity. Eight times Cup winning driver Tony Herlihy will partner Hughie Green while dual Cup winning driver Ricky May has been engaged for No Doctor Needed. The Auckland Cup is scheduled as race 9 and is listed to start at 7.31pm local time. by Chris Barsby

Canterbury Junior Driver Jessica Young should have won the South Island section of the Australasian Young Drivers Championships and should be representing her country this year. She was leading at the normal cut off time and thought she had won the chance to compete, but due to confusion from Perth officials she has lost that chance. The Australasia Young Drivers Championship is one of two serious targets for all junior drivers in New Zealand each season, with the NZ Junior Drivers Championships being the most sort after. Thanks to a outstanding season which has so far seen Young salute 23 times, she is now a leading chance to qualify and in with a chance to win this years edition of the NZ Junior Drivers Championships. But it's missing out on the Australasian Champs that really has Young upset. With qualifying usually running from the start of the season to around March, the points system was simply and easy to follow thanks to weekly updates on the HRNZ website. First there was talk it might be held in conjunction with the Tabtouch Perth Inter Dominions in December 2015. Then it was March 2016. That date came and went with little communication from Perth Officials. Now it looks like December 2016 will be the confirmed date. While it is great that the series will finally be held, it doesn't help Young out at all. Thanks to the new points system in place she currently sits in 4th place in the South Island ladder, 141 points behind leader Brad Williamson. Even if Young somehow made a unlikely come back to topple Brad, she would be unable to compete due to age restrictions. This throws up some questions, such as: Why is the date not a fixed? - We suggest March/April each year, to allow a good time of qualifying for New Zealand & Australian young drivers. Where is the communication from the Perth officials?  Did they hope to push it under the rug and hope nothing became of it? ​Major issues were raised after a disappointed owner sent in this letter http://www.harnesslink.com/International/Horse-owner-pleads-for- While plenty of the anger in that letter was directed at HRNZ, we would like to direct the attention away from them and their staff. They are the middle man, and have been given little information to work with by the Perth officials. The issue is clearly with Perth, and a lack of communication that has resulted in them letting down young drivers all around Australasia. Something needs to be done to clear up these issues. A Junior Driver in New Zealand only gets 5 season as a junior. And usually it is only in the last two seasons that a young driver really hits their straps and starts to get a larger amount of drives which sets them up to qualify for series such as these. The last thing they need is uncertainties on dates they can collect points and when the competition will be held. Harnesslink Media

Anywhere from four to six jockeys are expected to wear aerodynamically-engineered Speed Silks® brand jockey silks in this year's 142nd Kentucky Derby (G-I).   Speed Silks are a form-fitting, head-to-toe equine jockey uniform made entirely out of Aero Dimplex®, an aerodynamically-engineered fabric that's textured to actively reduce aerodynamic drag. Speed Silks are the only jockey silks worldwide that use this technology.   Matt Darby, founder of Darby Racing Technology, LLC and inventor of Speed Silks, says four Derby horses will likely be ridden by jockeys wearing Speed Silks, with a possible fifth and sixth, depending on circumstances.   "We're especially happy that one of our clients happens to have the betting favorite this year," Darby says, referring to Reddam Racing LLC's Nyquist. "We've been watching his career closely since he was a hot 2-year-old. I have photos of each of his graded stakes wins on my office wall."   "We also make Speed Silks for Big Chief Racing, who's fielding Exaggerator, Michael Lund Petersen's Mor Spirit, and Twin Creeks Racing's Destin. The first three have actually been Speed Silks customers for quite some time, but Twin Creeks called us right after Destin won the Sam F. Davis at Tampa Bay. They wanted brand-new silks in case they were able to run in the Derby; they had seen our product on other jockeys, loved them, and called us first."   Twenty horses are expected to run in the $2-million race at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Darby says fans may also see Speed Silks on WinStar Farms' Creator, but that he won't know until race day. WinStar has a big barn, he says, but only a couple of pairs of Speed Silks.   Finally, Steve Landers' Dazzling Gem is an also-eligible, but if he sees the track on race day, his jockey will definitely be in Speed Silks, Darby says.   This year's Kentucky Derby is just the third since Speed Silks first went on sale, and they have been worn in all three. The product has been on the backs of five Grade-I Breeders' Cup winners in the past two years, including Bayern, winner of the $5-million Classic in 2014. Including this year's Kentucky Derby, Speed Silks will have been worn in six of the last seven Triple Crown races.   Darby adds, "We'll see Speed Silks in the Kentucky Oaks on Friday, and we'll have jockeys wearing our stuff all up and down the undercard races on both Oaks day and Derby day. We hope to have a lot to crow about by Saturday evening. We're still a very small company with a very new, bleeding-edge product, so an opportunity like this is extremely exciting."   Speed Silks are sold across North America, and in 2015 became approved for use in Australia and the entire Asia-Pacific region, where Darby says business is quickly taking off. Speed Silks have also been sold for use in Great Britain and France.   The Speed Silks product lineup incudes jackets, helmet covers, jockey pants and boot sleeves - a product unique to Speed Silks.   Examples of the product can be seen at SpeedSilks.com/Gallery.   Matt Darby is available for comment at (806) 570-6920.    

November 19, 2015 - Yoann Lebourgeois rode Tess de Villeneuve (8f Goetmals Wood-Joie de Villeneuve) to victory in today’s Gr. III monte Prix de L’Ile d’Oleron at Vincennes (purse €110,000, 2850 meters, 17 monte starters). Off at 2/1 the winner scored in 1.14.4kr to defeat 7/1 Volcan d’Occagnes (6g Qurdo du Gautier-Flornina Beauces) teamed by Mathieu Abrivard with 22/1 Un Gars du Large (7g Memphis du Rib-Gorganes du Large) home third for jockey J.L.Cl. Dersoir and trainer Joel Hallais. The next pair to the line were 11/1 Nonant Le Pin (8f Goetmals Wood-Blazing Janice) and Eric Raffin followed by fifth finishing 12/1 Vrai Voyou (6g Gazouillis-Oranginette) handled by Anthony Barrier. On the undercard was the €85,000 Prix de Thoissey (2175 meters, six monte four year-old starters) and 2.4/1 Blooma d’Heripre (4f Rolling d’Heripre-Quenta Por Favor) recorded am impressive 1.12.5kr victory. 5/1 Boris des Doults (4g Flambeau des Pins-Petite Gitane) held second with third to 5/1 Bijou d’Auvillier (4g Kepler-Olive d’Auvillier). The €60,000 Prix de Dunkerque (2750 meters, 14 starters, Quinte+) resulted in a 1.14.3kr victory for the J-M Bazire reined Baxter du Klau (4g Oiseau de Feux-Imia Josselyn) trained by J-M Baudouin. This 4/5 odds winner defeated 37/1 Black Atout (4m Prodigious-La Laqune) reined by Franck Nivard for trainer Franck Leblanc. 44/1 Brelan du Vivier (4m Joker de Rozoy-Queline du Vivier) was third for David Thomain. Thomas H. Hicks  

Pompano Beach, FL...June 6, 2015...The Spanish-American Friendship Series continues Saturday night at Pompano Park with a trio of races featuring many of the best harness racing amateur drivers in South Florida stretching across the Atlantic Ocean to include some of the top amateau pilots from Spain. The three race extravaganza includes two trotting events along with a pacing event--something that may be seem a bit unique to the Spanish contingent since they only have trotters in Spain. Representing Spain are Jaume Bassa-Riera, Agustin Mascaro'-Pou, Miquel Vich-Capo and Bernardo Jaume-Cirer while the contingent from the U.S.A. includes Leon Cable, Luanna Beeson, Billy Muggleston, Dein Spriggs, Les Bloom, Joe Pennacchio, Jamie Marra, Ted Bowman and Steve Oldford. Riera came over to the States with solid credentials including 124 lifetime wins and a Spanish Breeders Crown championship. He took top honors just last Tuesday night in the Yonkers Raceway edition of the Spanish-American Friendship Series with Amalfi Coast, defeating fellow countrymen Cirer and Capo, among others, in the process. Cirer, with 25 lifetime wins before crossing the seas to America, added a win to his resume by scoring with Caviart Jett at Monticello Raceway the very next day over "stablemates" Riera, Pou and Capo. Pou, who has 28 career victories, ia a past winner of Spanish amateurs championship and serves as General Secretary of the European Amateur Drivers Federation. Capo, with 164 wins career-wise, has won three Spanish Amateur Championships and was also the 2012 European Amateur Champion. The American team of amateur drivers is comprised of members of Florida's Amateur Driving Club, an organization that has donated over $140,000 to worthy charitable organizations over the years due to their generosity of giving their driving fees to charity. Cable, no stranger to the sulky, comes into the action with 417 lifetime wins and has been 1-2-3 in over 50% of his 2,367 lifetime starts while Spriggs is just two wins away from 400 and "batting" .464 this season on the strength of a 14-5-4 scorecard in 39 starts. Muggleston, the former helicopter pilot of the great Herve Filion, has 89 lifetime wins and Oldford has recently climbed over the 100 win mark lifetime and sports a .325 average this semester. Pennacchio, who won his very first race at the famed Delaware, Ohio "Little Brown Jug" half mile oval, now sports 147 lifetime victories while Ted Bowman is enjoying another solid season in the bike batting .303 with his lifetime victory total now at 70. Jamie Marra, fresh off a 17 to 1 victory with his own Lukie Duke a week ago, now has 43 lifetime wins. Les Bloom, a recent addition to the F.A.D.C. has 45 lifetime victories while Luanna Beeson, representing the ladies, recently achieved her first two lifetime victories. Standardbred owner Peppy Greco has made beautiful ribbon momentos for the winning combatants during the competition while the winning "team" will own the rights to the magnificent trophy to be presented after the competition. Another highlight of the event will be a race call by Pompano Park Television Reporter Gigi Diaz, expected to call the action in the third race. Post time for the Saturday night card is 7:30 p.m. and also features a growing Super Hi-5 carryover of $4,134.22. John Berry

May 23, 2015 - Harness racing Elitloppet officials today rounded out next Sunday’s 16-horse lineup (two eliminations of eight each) with the addition of Royal Fighter, Vincennes and Bret Boko. The full field is shown below. Timoko (FR) Maven (USA) On Track Piraten (SWE) Wind Of The North (USA) B.B.S.Sugarlight (NO) Support Justice (NO) Nahar (SWE) – a past winner of this classic Voltigeur de Myrt (FR) Magic Tonight (SWE) Univers de Pan (FR) Nuncio (SWE) Ustinof du Vivier (FR) Mosaique Face (SWE) Royal Fighter (SWE) Vincennes (FR) Bret Boko (FI) Trainer Per Eriksson’s Royal Fighter earned his ticket a week ago with a win in what was then the fastest clocking in Europe in 2015. The seven year-old son of Varenne has earned only 1.6SEK million in a relatively lackluster career that has shown flashes of brilliance. The SWE bred mare Vincennes has been a solidly consistent performer at high levels this Spring. The seven year-old daughter of Spotlite Lobell has earned 6.1SEK million and is a closer. Bret Boko was the final invitee off his impressive gate to wire victory in the Finlandia AJO. The son of Yankee Glide has earned over 3.1SEK million and has gate speed to be a factor. The 2015 Elitloppet field is a competitive one and should provide intense action. It’s a combination of proven veterans and outsiders that recently have provided fast victories. Be there for a great classic at Solvalla and Elitloppet weekend. Thomas H. Hicks

Queensland trainer Ian Gurney has been forced to change his plans in the lead up to this year's Inter Dominion with Avonnova and will now start in the Kevin Robinson Cup at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night. Gurney was hoping to start in Saturday night's Victoria Cup which would have allowed him to nominate for the Inter Dominion supplementary heat at Menangle on February 14 but now will head home early next week to compete in the Queensland heat. "I think he is in the best condition that I have ever had him in, I was planning on having to go to Victoria later this week so he has had plenty of work but after being left out down there I was more than happy to give him a run at Menangle on Saturday night," Gurney said. "The 2300 metres this week probably suits him even more than the mile he competed in last start, he won the Gold Coast Cup in October over the 2680 metres and For A Reason was in that race, so I'm pretty sure Shane (Graham driver) will look to get out of the gate and work to the front this week." Gurney confirmed Avonnova had been given a couple of 'easy days' after his most recent win at Menangle but is ready to fire again. "He had a couple of quiet days after winning at Menangle but we got serious with him again and he is ready to run another super race, he will go home Monday or Tuesday next week and go straight to the heat of the Inter Dominion at Albion Park." Stablemate Mach Alert will not be ready for an Inter Dominion campaign but will remain in Sydney. "Mach Alert has not had enough work to go straight into the Inter Dominion, he has only had three trials in the last 17 months." "He will stay in Sydney because he is so well suited by the big Menangle track." By Greg Hayes

Just hours after nominations for harness racing’s pinnacle event – Inter Dominion – were released, TAB has posted its first Fixed Odds Market. Of the 150 pacers from across Australasia nominated for the time-honoured series, defending champion Beautide has been installed the early favourite. Despite his last-start defeat in the Miracle Mile, Beautide is listed at $4.20 in his bid to become just the sixth pacer to retain his title. Hondo Grattan was the ground breaker in 1973 and ’74, followed by Gammalite in ’83 and ’84, Our Sir Vancelot in 1997, ’98 and ’99, Blacks A Fake in 2006, ’07 and ’08 and Im Themightyquinn in 2011, ’12 and ’13. Miracle Mile winner Christen Me and boom Victorian, Guaranteed, are next in line at $5.50. Terror To Love at $7, Lennytheshark at $8 and Adore Me at $9.50 are the only other nominees under double figures. The Inter Dominion is scheduled to be run at Tabcorp Park Menangle on March 1, 2015 PAUL COURTS TAB FIXED ODDS: Beautide $      4.20 Christen Me NZ $      5.50 Guaranteed $      5.50 Terror To Love NZ $      7.00 Lennytheshark $      8.00 Adore Me NZ $      9.50 For A Reason $    11.00 Restrepo $    11.00 Philadelphia Man $    12.00 Suave Stuey Lombo $    14.00 Billies A Star NZ $    18.00 Franco Nelson NZ $    18.00 Bit Of A Legend NZ $    21.00 David Hercules $    21.00 Easy On The Eye NZ $    21.00 Mach Beauty $    21.00 Avonnova $    26.00 Elios NZ $    26.00 Keayang Steamer $    26.00 Macho Comacho NZ $    26.00 Border Control NZ $    41.00 Franco Ledger NZ $    41.00 Im Corzin Terror NZ $    41.00 Our Jimmy Johnstone NZ $    41.00 Abettorpunt $    51.00 Bettors Fire NZ $    51.00 Chancellor Cullen NZ $    51.00 Jivin Cullen NZ $    51.00 Johny Rock USA $    51.00 Keayang Cullen $    51.00 Majestic Mach $    51.00 Our Hi Jinx NZ $    51.00 Courage To Rule NZ $    61.00 Devendra $    61.00 Elusive Chick NZ $    61.00 Field Officer NZ $    61.00 Flaming Flutter NZ $    61.00 Majestic Major NZ $    61.00 Maximan NZ $    61.00 Seel N Print NZ $    61.00 Arden Rooney NZ $    81.00 Beauty Secret $    81.00 Bettor Offer NZ $    81.00 Bitobliss $    81.00 Blazin N Cullen NZ $    81.00 Devil Dodger NZ $    81.00 Iam Mr Brightside NZ $    81.00 Mach Alert NZ $    81.00 Macha NZ $    81.00 Terrorway NZ $    81.00 Bellas Delight $  101.00 Bettor Bet Black $  101.00 Chariot King $  101.00 Chilli Palmer NZ $  101.00 Forever Gold $  101.00 Lochinver NZ $  101.00 Magical Telf NZ $  101.00 Monifieth NZ $  101.00 Saveapatrol NZ $  101.00 Supreme Mach NZ $  101.00 Teo Enteo $  101.00 Gaius Caesar NZ $  126.00 Whozideawasthis NZ $  126.00 American Legend $  151.00 Ardghal NZ $  151.00 Aspiring Artist $  151.00 Brigadier Bronski $  151.00 Caesars Folly NZ $  151.00 Fearless Leader NZ $  151.00 Heza Thrill NZ $  151.00 Hokonui Ben NZ $  151.00 In The Perfect Storm NZ $  151.00 Living Lord NZ $  151.00 Mark Dennis $  151.00 Mysta Magical Mach NZ $  151.00 Our Major Mark NZ $  151.00 Pemberton Shard NZ $  151.00 Rule Like A King NZ $  151.00 Sensational Gabby $  151.00 Terror Time $  151.00 Christian Ruler NZ $  201.00 Cold Major $  201.00 Condagen $  201.00 Freyberg NZ $  201.00 Ace Light $  301.00 Alchemy NZ $  301.00 Alta Jerome NZ $  301.00 Artoc NZ $  301.00 Beau Dandy $  301.00 Bettor Draw NZ $  301.00 Chance NZ $  301.00 Chevals Clivesdale $  301.00 Come On Frank $  301.00 Comply Or Die NZ $  301.00 Composed $  301.00 Crombie $  301.00 Dalton Bromac NZ $  301.00 Destreos NZ $  301.00 Drunken Desire $  301.00 Dundee Three NZ $  301.00 Dynamite Dude $  301.00 Emperor Montana NZ $  301.00 Exciteusinthecity $  301.00 Fernleigh Renegade NZ $  301.00 Funny Boy NZ $  301.00 Go West U Terror NZ $  301.00 Gumdrops $  301.00 Im A Peregrine $  301.00 Ima Rocket Star NZ $  301.00 It Is Billy $  301.00 Jaccka Clive NZ $  301.00 Jaydens Castle $  301.00 Jazzabout $  301.00 Lark Rise NZ $  301.00 Latteron $  301.00 Lets Elope NZ $  301.00 Lewy Risk NZ $  301.00 Lombo Toscannini $  301.00 Lovable Larrikin $  301.00 Mabrook NZ $  301.00 Mach Banner NZ $  301.00 Marty Monkhouser $  301.00 Montana Falcon NZ $  301.00 My Elusive Dream NZ $  301.00 My General Lee $  301.00 My Jellignite NZ $  301.00 Only The Brave NZ $  301.00 Our Blackbird NZ $  301.00 Our Pacquiao NZ $  301.00 Palais Du Louvre $  301.00 Pas Ultimate Delight NZ $  301.00 Pub Blitz $  301.00 Rathmore Lady NZ $  301.00 Rohan Home $  301.00 Saucy Legend NZ $  301.00 Savesomtimetodream $  301.00 Shardons Rocket NZ $  301.00 Shipwreck $  301.00 Sign To Inverell $  301.00 Smart Major NZ $  301.00 Smudge Bromac NZ $  301.00 Tact Hayleys Delight NZ $  301.00 The Stingray $  301.00 This Time Dylan NZ $  301.00 Ultimate Art $  301.00 Uncle Wingnut NZ $  301.00 Wartime Sweetheart NZ $  301.00 Western Rockstar $  301.00 Wrongly Accused $  301.00 Zenable NZ $  301.00

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