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The lineup for the October 25th GP Lotteria is quite superb, with this 71st edition of the classic having Vitruvio, Face Time Bourbon, Vernissage Grif, Arazi Boko, Zacon Gio, Vivid Wise As and Vanesia EK among the entrants. There will be three eliminations and a finale competing for the winning share of the 785,400€ total purse. See the batterias participants below in post-position order.     Gaet, Ippodromo di Agano Napoli files by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Bleff Dipa (3m Mister JP-Preziosa JW-Lets Go) took this 66th Derby Italiani del Trotto (purse 847,000€, 2100 meters autostart) at Roma Capannelle, with Roberto Vecchione aboard for trainer Holger Ehlert. The harness racing winner is owned by Jean Pierre Barjon, the current President of LeTrot and was bred by Arcangelo di Pasquale. Race time was 1.13.5kr by the now five-time winner in 11 appearances. Bleff Dipa narrowly bested Blackflash Bar (3f Oropuro Bar-Masasque) handled by Santo Mollo and third finishing Bepi Bi (3m Donato Hanover-Lorraine Bi) and pilot Alessandro Gocciadoro. Fourth was Bubble Effe (3m Nesta Effe-New York Effe) with Orjan Kihlstrom at the lines. Mister JP pedigree, the product of Jean Pierre Dubois. Below is a photo grouping of the Ehlert family. Great work of their team. The companion Oaks del Trotto (purse 253,000€, 1640 meters autostart) saw Betta Zack (3f Rotary OK-Martina Griff-Varenne) score in 1.12.6kr with Andrea Guzzinati the teamster. Betta won for the ninth time in 14 appearances. Two lengths back second was Bonneville Gifont (3f Varenne-Fedora Caf) with Ant. Velotti up and third was Bolen Hall FAS (3f Conway Hall-Show Grif Italia) handled by Roberto Vecchione at the lines. The winner’s pedigree follows. The day before at Follonica Del Pini was the GP Citta’ di Follonica (purse 50,050€, 2200 meter autostart) and the 1.13.7kr timed winner was Allegra Gifont (4f Maharajah-Realm of Fancy) handled by Alessandro Gocciadoro. Two back second was Aura (4f Yankee Slide-Dora d’Alfa) for Antonio DiNardo and third home was Akela Pal Ferm (4f Maharajah). Gaet, Ehlert, Ippodrome Roma Capannelle files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink    

September 20, 2020 Cokstile (7m Quite Easy-Joystile-Coktail Jet) easily took the 220,000€ purse PR Costa Azzurra at Torino raced over the 1600 meter autostart sprint distance. Race time was 1.11.2kr for the Antonio Di Nardo harness racing reined performer. Zacon Gio (5m Ruty Grif-May Glade Font SM-Yankee Glide) was two lengths back second for Roberto Vecchione with Vitruvio (6m Adrian Chip-Tigre OM-Zebu) five lengths further back third handled by Alessandro Gocciadoro. The winning pedigree follows Gaet, Ippodromo Torino files/photos   Thomas H. Hicks

Vernissage Grif (6m Varenne-Dalis Grif-Park Avenue Joe) took the final and his elimination of the Grand Premio Citta di Montecatini in Italy(purse 154,000€ for the final and 13,080€ in each of two elims, 1640 meters autostart) with harness racing trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro aboard. He is owned by Gennaro Riccio and was timed in 1.10.6kr in the final and 1.10.2kr in his elim. Second in both was Zacon Gio (5m Ruty Grif-May Glade Font SM-Yankee Glide) handled by Roberto Vecchione for trainer Holger Ehlert. Third in the final was Arazi Boko (13g Varenne-Laura Kemp) handled by Andrea Farolfi in the final for trainer Gocciadoro, five lengths back of the winner. Arazi Boko took the second elim timed in 1.12.2kr defeating Chief Orlando (7m Orlando Vici-Muto Bonita-Felix Santana) and Zlatan (5m Napoleon Bar-Nastassia Bi) that has teamed by G.P. Minnucci. Finale replay Vernissage Grif (6) elim one Elim one replay Arazi Boko (5) second elim Elim two replay On the fine card was also the PR Criterium Toscano (purse 22,000€, 1640 meters autostart, two year olds) that went to 1.17.1kr timed Callisto (2m Nad Al Sheba-Medley d’Italia) with Antonio Greppi up for Ettore Vairano. Caffe Time Bi (2m Manofmanymissions-The Starlet Lux) took second for trainer/driver Riccardo Pezzatini. Third home was Clooney Grad (2m Napoleon Bar-Grevola Grad) with Roberto Vecchione up. Gaet, Ippodromo Sesana Montecatini files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Apple Wise As (4f Royalty For Life-Desert Flower K-Sierra Kosmos) took the Premio Citta’ di Torino Filly (purse 80,080€, 2100 meters autostart) at Ippodromo di Vinovo in Italy, timed in 1.14.8kr. Fed Esposito teamed the harness racing winner for Alessandro Gocciadoro. This team defeated stablemate Amber Prad (4f Timoko-Sinead Prad) with Gocciadoro up and third finishing Allegra WF (4f Varenne-Formose Jet) handled by Mario Minopoli Jr. Apple Wise As The companion event, the Pr Citta’ di Torino Male (purse 80,080€, 2100 meters autostart), saw Ari Lest (4m Pascia’ Lest-Natalina Wise) score in 1.12.9kr with Massimiliamo Castaldo the pilot for trainer Gocciadoro. Two Gocciadoro stablemates were second and third, A length back second was Juan Bros (4m Muscle Mass-Ziezo Buitenzorg) with Giuseppe Lombardo driving. Third was Aman You Sm (4m Love You-Emon Santa Fe’ Sm) handled by Fed Espositio. Gaet, Ippodromo di Vinovo files/photo by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Trotting action returned to Montecatini Snai Sesana this day in Italy with two GP events. The Grand Prix Societa Terme Filly – Memorial Vivaldo Baldi (purse 50,050€, 2040 meters autostart, three year old females) saw Banirussa Jet (3f Pine Chip-Nagasaki Jet) scored in 1.14.3kr for trainer/driver Alessandro Gocciadoro. She defeated stablemate Bahamia (3f Maharajah-Nambia) with Federico Esposito teaming for Gocciadoro some three lengths back second. Buena Sverte Bi (3f Yankee Glide-No Its Here) was third with V.P. Dell’Annunziata the pilot for trainer Tiberio Cecere. Babirussa Jet The male division of the GP Societa Terme Mem. Vivaldo Baldi (purse 50,050€, 2040 meters autostart) went to Belzebu’ Jet (3m Wishing Stone-Otero Jet) timed in 1.14.8kr and handled by Vincenzo Luongo for trainer/owner Massimo Firetti. Bengurion Jet (3m Maharajah-Love Me Tender) was two lemgths back second with Marco Smorgon the trainer/driver for Scuderia Bruni Racing Team. Third was Baccani (3m Ideale Luis=Butler’s Choice) with Antonio Di Nardo agt the lines for conditioner Gennaro Casillo. Belzebu’ Jet Gaet, Montecatini Snai Secsana files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Arazi Boko (13g Varenne-Laura Kemp-Express Ride) continued his storied career with a victory in the Gran Premio Riccardo Grassi (purse 50,050€, 1660 meters autostart, 12 starters) on the Cesena 800 meter oval in Italy. He was timed in 1.11.9kr and reined by trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro. His fifth dam is the legendary Stenographer. Three lengths back second was Vesna (6f Libeccio Grif-Immagine Lunare-Toss Out) with third to Ua Huka (7f Muscle Yankee-Fancy Bi-Toss Out). Arazi Boko Gaet, Blodbanken files by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink    

Enrico Bellei teamed Barbaresco Grif (3m Conway Hall-Maura Grif-Varenne) to a 1.12.8kr victory in the GP Citta’di Napoli (purse 200,200€, 2100 meters autostart, three-year olds) at Agnano’s 1000 meter racetrack in Italy. Bonjovi MMG (3m Ganymede-Ethel Blak-Indro Park) was second ahead of Bengurion Jet (3m Maharajah-Love Me Tender-Supergill). Barbaresco Grif On the same card was the GP Freccia d’Europa (purse 180,180€, 1600 meters autostart) and Vivid Wise As (6m Yankee Glide-Temple Blue Chip-Cantab Hall) scored in record time 1.10.4kt with Alessandro Gocciadoro at the lines. Zefiro d’Ete (5m Mago d’Amore-Isotta Fraschini-Angus Hall) was second for Gaetano DiNardo. Third went to Deimos Racing (7g Quite Easy-Athena Haleryd-Pine Chip) with Antonio DiNardo aboard. Vivid Wise As The GP Regione Campanio Males (purse 80,080€, 2100 meters autostart, four year old males) went to the 1.12.5kr timed Antony Leone (4m Libeccio Grif-Gasping Ferm-Lemon Dra) with Gaetano Di Nardo the pilot. This pair prevailed over Always EK (4m Filipp Roc-Nike EK-Varenne) handled by Alessandro Gocciadoro and third finishing Aramis EK (4m Nad Al Sheba-Freedom EK-Bon Vivant) with Pietro Gubellini at the lines. Antony Leone tingOn the same program was the GP Regione Campania Filly (purse 80,080€, 2100 meters autostart, four- year old females) and the 1.13.0kr clocked winner was Allegra Gifont (4f Maharajah-Realm of Fancy-Ginger Somolli) reined by Alessandro Gocciadoro. Arnas Cam (4f Ready Cash-Nadia Cam-Varenne) took a close second for Santo Mollo, ahead of third finishing Allegra WF (4f Varenne-Formosa Jet-Pine Chip) with Mario Minopoli Jr. aboard. Allegra Gifont   Gaet files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

The Gr. III GP Riccardo Grassi (purse 50,050€, 1660 meters autostart) is set for August 1 at Cesena in Italy with 11 horses to be at the start including Arazi Boko, the gallant 13 year old war horse, and Timone EK. It shapes up as a competitive event among leading aged campaigners in Italy. Stay tuned for the great trotting action. Gaet, Cesena files by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink    

Alessandro Gocciadoro has returned home to Italy and he and his team is hot. From July 5-14 his trainees won seven major races, all but one being three and four year olds. The run started on July 5 at Ippodromo San Paolo Montegiorgio with the Gr. III GP Marche Femine Livia (purse 50,050€, 1600 meters autostart, three year old females) and Bahamia (3f Maharajah-Nimibia-Cantab Hall) scored for trainer/driver Gocciadoro timed in 1.12.3kr. She easily defeated Bica DL (3f Zola Boko) and Bananaramc Jet (3f Ken Warkentin). The male division called the GP Marche Maschi Martini (Gr. III, purse 50,050€, 1600 meters autostart, three year old males) saw Boys Stecca (3m Napoleon Bar-Ambretta Bar-Ganymede) score in 1.12.9kr with Gocciadoro at the lines. Belzebu’ Jet (3m Wishing Stone) and Bleff Dipa (3m Mister JP) took the second and third checks. On July 11 the streak continued at Ippodromo di Cesena in the Citta di Cesena Filly (Gr. III, purse 50,050€, 2060 meters autostart) and Babirussa Jet (3f Pine Chip-Nagasaki Jet-Supergill) scored in 1.13.4kr for pilot Gocciadoro. Betta Zack (3f Rotary OK) and Borboletta (3f Love You) were the closest rivals. In the Citta’ di Cesena Maschi (Gr. III, purse 50,050€, three year old males) the Gocciadoro winner was 1.13.7kr timed Big Business ARC (3m Varenne-Grazie Italia-Pine Chip). He bested Bonjovi MMG (3m Ganymede-Ethel Black-Indro Park) and Bruccione FAS (3m Gruccione Jet). Babirussa Jet   Bigbusiness ARC     On July 12 the action moved to Trieste and first the PR Citta’di Trieste Filly (purse 50,050€, 1660 meters autostart, four year old females) saw Apple Wise As (4f Royalty For Life-Desert Flower K-Sierra Kosmos) win in 1.15.2kr for Gocciadoro.   Alaska Gams (4f Maharajah) and Amour Petit (4f Look de Star) took the next two checks. The featured PR Giorgio Jegher (purse 50,050€, 1660 meters autostart) went to the gallant veteran Arazi Boko (13g Varenne-Laura Kemp-Express Ride) timed in 1.13.9kr for Gocciadoro. Viscarda Jet (6f Pine Chip-Nives Jet-Naglo) was second and Timone EK (8m Mr. Vic-Gemona-Lemon Dra) took third money. Then the four year old males contested the PR Citta’diu Trieste Maschi (purse 50,050€, 1660 meters autostart) and again AG was in command with 1.14.5kr timed Al Capone Stecca (4m Napoleon Bar-Ombretta Bar-Ganymede). Adamo Dipa (4m Chirone Dei) was a length back followed by third finishing Americio Jet (4m Trixton). Gaet, Trieste, Cesena, Montegiorgio Ippodromo files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

June 14, 2020 - High class trotting action took place yesterday on the harness racing half mile track at Padova Italy. There were five Groupe level contests. The Gr. II Gran Premio Padovanelle (purse 80,080€, 1640 meters autostart, 12 starters) was the headliner and it received the most attention due to the appearance of Zacon Gio (5m Ruty Grif-May Glade Font SM-Yankee Glide-Kim’s Diamond Chip), the 2019 winner of the Yonkers NY International. He did not disappoint as he scored gate to wire in a world record 1.09.3kr (half mile track race record, mile rate 1:51.5). Roberto Vecchione teamed the Holger Ehlert trainee that is owned by Giuseppe Franco. Stablemate Sharon Gar (9g Varenne-Geneve Gar-Lemon Dra) tracked the winner but could not keep up in the final quarter finishing second, timed in 1.09.8kr. V.P. Dell’Annunziata teamed her for trainer Ehlert. Third was Virginia Grif (6f Varenne-Fancy Capar-Supergill) for Fed Esposito. Veteran Arazi Boko (13g Varenne-Laura Kemp-Supergill) was fourth. Zacon Gio’s pedigree and the race replay are shown below. For the Zacon Gio video replay click here There were two divisions of the Gr. III Gran Premio Elwood Medium on the fine Padova card, each for a purse of 50,050€ and raced over 2040 meters autostart. In the filly division for three year olds the 1.15.0kr winner was Bonneville Gifont (3f Varenne-Fedora Caf-Toss Out) for Roberto Vecchione. She defeated Bernadette Jet (3f Maharajah-First Lady Jet-Supergill) handled by Roberto Andreghetti. Her third dam was the down under champion trotter Petite Evander. Third in this race was Bica DL (3f Zola Boko-Cindy America-Supergill) for Antonio Di Nardo. Cindy America also comes from an important internatiomal pedigree as shown below.     The three year old colt division went to 1.15.5kr clocked Bonjovi MMG (3m Ganymede-Ethel Blak-Indro Park) reined by V.P. Dell’Annunziata. Baccani (3, Ideale Luis-Butlers Choice-Harmonious) was next with Antonio DiNardo aboard and third was Bigbusiness ARC (3m Varenne-Crazie Italia-Pine Chip for Alessandro Gocciadoro. The four year olds contested two divisions of the Gr. III Gran Premio Citta’ di Padova (each for a purse of 50,050€, distance 2040 meters). The filly division went to 1.12.5kr timed and Roberto Vecchione reined Ambra Grif (4f Varenne-Novella di Jesolo-Lindy Lane). She bested equal timed Alaska Gams (4f Maharajah-Edwige Blak-Supergill) with Andrea Guzzinati aboard with third to Alouette handled by Enrico Baldo. In the colt division the 1.11.6kr clocked victory was earned by Alrajah One (4m Maharajah-Mariu’-Varenne) with Enrico Bellei the pilot. Second was Always EK (4m Filipp Roc-Nike EK-Varenne) and reinsman Alessandro Gocciadoro and third went to Aguacate (4m Iglesias-Laguna As-Lemon Dra). In other European notices, the great Zoogin, shown below with Ake Svanstedt, passed away this week at age 31. Quite a horse he was on the track and as a stallion Zoogin and Svanstedt Another name from the past emerged today in the Breedlopp at Solvalla. Stig H. Johansson was the pilot for third finishing Fixi Mearas (5f Muscle Hill-Trinity Starlight-SJs Photo) that was off as the 1.8/1 favorite. Stig H. also trains this well-bred mare.   Thomas H. Hicks

Zacon Gio (5m Ruty Grif-May Glide Font SM-Yankee Glide) returned to competitive action today at Napoli to win the PR fon Telethons Invitational (purse 12, 100€, 2060 meters distance handicap), He scored from a 40 meter handicap timed in 1.11.6kr with Roberto Vecchione aboard for trainer Holger Ehlert.  Vedette del Ronco (6f Julius del Ronco-Bum Bum Fortuna) rallied nicely to be less than two lengths back second. Virtuoso Luis (6m Self Possessed-Mandralogo PL) took third. Zacon Gio, the 2019 Yonkers International winner, who also bested Face Time Bourbon in Italy, made his return off several impressive public training appearances with his trainer aboard, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7LQge0SDrM&feature=emb_logo Zacon Gio Zacon Gio’s pedigree is shown below. Gaet, Ippodromo di Agnano files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink    

Ursa Caf (7f Explot Caf-Crismar-Campo Ass) took today’s Pr. Encat (purse 55,000€, 2250 meters autostart) at Milano La Maura. Timed in 1.13.2kr the winner had Antonio DiNardo as her pilot, she a winner of over 338,000€. Deimos Racing S (7g Quite Easy-Athena Haleryd-Pine Chip) was a game second for reinsman Roberto Andreghetti, ahead of Sonia (9g Donato Hanover-Ele Code-Uronometro) with Rebe Legati up. Toscarella (8f Varenne-Day Love Blue-Ganymede) took fourth for Mas Castaldo. Ursa Caf  The Ursa Caf pedigree is shown below. . Gaet, Blodbanken files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink    

The GP Royal Mares (purse 88,000€, 1600 meters autostart) at Napoli Agnano saw Sharon Gar (8f Varenne-Geneve Gar-Lemon Dra) score in record time 1.10.7kr with Roberto Vecchione aboard for trainer Holger Ehlert. The previous record was 1.11.1kr set by Trendy OK. A half-length off Sharon Gar was second finishing Ua Huka (6f Muscles Yankee-Fancy Bi) with Andrea Farolfi up with third to Tersa OB Sonic reined by Antonio Di Nardo. A day earlier at Siracusa was the PR Mediterrareo (Gr. III, purse 40,040€) and victory went to Aramis EK (3m Nad Al Sheba-Freedom EK-Bon Vivant) timed in 1.13.1kr with Alessandro Gocciadoro up. Anthony Leone (3m Lebessio Grif-Gasping Ferm) was second and third went to Akela Pal Ferm (3f Maharajah-Remilla di Palle). by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

The colt division of the GP Mipaaf (purse 407,000€, 2100 meters autostart) in Napoli, Italy saw a 1.14.3kr clocked victory by Bristol CR (2m Owen CR- Rapsidia CR-Yankee Slide) with a front end score. Banderas Bi (2m Ganymede-Isa Grandi-Toss Out) was second and Barberesco Grif (2m Conway Hall-Maura Grif-Varenne) was third. Buena Suerte Bi (2f Yankee Glide-No Ifs Here) took this day’s PR Mipaaf Filly (purse 88,000€, 1600 meters autostart) clocked in 1.14.9kr and reined by V.P. Dell’Annunziata for trainer Tiberio Cecere. The winner raced on the front as she recorded her fifth victory in seven starts in this her two-year old season. Betta Indal (2f Varenne-Isabeau Volo) was second with Rene Legati up with third to Brezzapura Ferm (2f Ganymede-Ozge Ferm-Fast Photo) home third for Gior, D;Allessandro Jr. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Alessandro Gocciodoro piloted his trainee Arazi Boko (12g Varenne-Laura Kemp-Express Ride) to a wire to wire victory in the 110,000€ purse Grand Premio Duomo 2019 held at Firenze, Italy. It was the 73rd edition of this classic race contested over 1600 meters autostart.  The winning campaigner was clocked in 1.16.9kr to defeat Ula Pisaia Trgf (6f Ghibellinoi-Estasivi-American Winner) reined by Antonio Greppi. Third home was the Antonio DiNardo teamed Pocohontas-Diamant (8f Look de Star-Lanira Dei). Two day’s later at Milano La Maura, in the Jef’s Spice (purse 14,300€, 1650 meters autostart), Buffon ZS (2m Conway Hall-Nuvella Grif-Varenne) recorded his third career victory in record time 1.13.2kr. He rallied for Andrea Farolfi and trainer Mauro Baroncini to score by three over the Gocciadoro teamed Boltigeur Erre (2m Voltigeur de Myrt-Lilli Degi Ulivi-Sugarcane Hanover). Third was Bardo di Poggio (2m Trixton-Nuvolo di Poggio-Varenne) with Pietro Gubellini aboard Ahead on December 7 is the 88,000€ purse GP Royal Mares at Napoli. Raced over 1600 meters autostart this group of 11 includes Sharon Gar, Zaniah Bi and Ursa Caf. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

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