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Jack Baggitt Jr., a New Jersey-based Harness racing driver who competed mostly at Freehold Raceway, The Meadowlands and other Mid-Atlantic tracks, died Wednesday at Princeton Medical Center following complications from surgery. He was 58. Baggitt. a resident of Columbus, NJ, spent three decades in harness racing, starting when he was 13 years old getting experience working with the late Freehold Raceway legendary horseman, Harold Kelly, and started driving in races at the age of 16. His first pari-mutuel racing victory was in 1982 with a horse named Terry's Lucky Lady at Freehold. He competed in the Junior Driving Championships, taking home the $15,000 grand prize in the Foxboro Driving Derby. He soon became a regular among the top-notch driving colony at Freehold, as well as competing at The Meadowlands and Garden State Park. By 1984, Baggitt burst on the harness racing scene with 117 wins and $1,134,332 in purse earnings that included driving Lisheen to victory in the $347,750 Mistletoe Shalee at The Meadowlands, his most prestigious triumph at that time. His success earned him the honor of being chosen the Rising Star of 1984 by the United States Harness Writers Association. Overall, in his 30-year career, Baggitt drove the winners of more than $16 million with 2,700 victories, 2,535 seconds and 2,381 thirds. He also trained 132 winners earning nearly $1.5 million. His most successful year was 2007 when he drove 355 winners and was in the money 999 times, with horses that earned $2.7 million. He had 10 years with more than 100 victories and he once drove eight winners in one day at Freehold. Baggitt is also remembered for a $6,000 yearling purchase named Danish Delight he made in 1999. He would say that he was emotionally connected to the trotter, who earned $537,671 in four years of racing. Danish Delight's racing career was highlighted by a third-place finish in the $1-million Breeders Crown to Fool's Goal and Plesac in 2002 and winning an elimination of the Dexter Cup as a three-year-old. He had family connections in harness racing as well, with cousin Bob Baggitt Jr., a successful trainer, and his late uncle, Bob Baggitt Sr., a long-time standardbred horse owner who served many years as a vice president and member of the Board of Directors of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey. Predeceased by his parents, Jack Sr. And Joanne, he is survived by two sons, Jason of Bradley Beach and Jeffrey of Old Bridge; two sisters, Jill Norton of Columbus, NJ, and Jeanne Turnquist of Yardley, PA; several nieces and nephews and grandnieces and grandnephews. Funeral arrangements include visitation on Sunday, February 14, from 2 to 4 p.m., limited because of Covid-19, at Freeman Funeral Home, 47 East Main Street, Freehold, NJ. By Leon Zimmerman        

Freehold Raceway will celebrate the harness racing luck of the Irish on Friday the 13th this year, when they play host to the annual St. Patrick's Day Pace.   The race is scheduled as the fourth on the ten-race program. As usual, the race features a lineup of all Irish drivers.   The field, from the rail out, consists of Classic River, with George Brennan, JV'z Dream, with Ron Burke, Happilyeverfaster, for Jim Whelan, Anotherprettyface, with last year's winner, Jack Killeen, Our Royal Majesty, for Jack Baggitt Jr, Nora's Tandt, with Mike Whelan, Dear Diary, with Irish Joe Hanney, and J Danae, for Anthony Haughan.   Race sponsor, Peter Grandich & Co,. will make a presentation to the winning driver after the race.   The first race on Friday is scheduled for 12:30 PM EDT.   From Freehold Raceway  

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

Freehold, NJ --- He's won at the Meadowlands, Pocono Downs, and Harrah's Philadelphia since coming stateside. Now, Matticulous will take his harness racing talents to Freehold Raceway on Saturday (January 11), as he headlines a field of eight Preferred handicap pacers.   Born and raised in the United Kingdom, Matticulous began his career there, before coming to the United States for the Ron Burke barn in October. Since then, he's been on a tear, with five wins and a second from six starts. Perhaps his most impressive performance came at the Meadowlands on November 23, when he paced a winning mile in 1:50.1. He went the last quarter that night in a blazing 25.2 seconds.   Matticiulous will be making his first start since December 9 at Yonkers Raceway, when he finished second as the 3/5 favorite, behind 2018 Metro Pace winner Stag Party. On January 4, Matticulous turned in a strong qualifying mile at the Meadowlands, going the distance in 1:54.3. He was assigned the outside post position for Saturday's tilt, and figures to get strong wagering support.   The best of the challengers appear to be The Onlyest One and Benson Boys. The former won the Preferred at Freehold three starts back, and finished third at the level, behind stablemate Lucan Hanover, last week. Jack Baggitt will drive that one for the first time, for trainer Nick Surick. He was assigned post position six. Benson Boys is undefeated since coming to the United States in October, winning four straight races between Pocono and Yonkers. Joe Bongiorno is named to drive for his sister Jenn, leaving from post seven.   The rest of the field consists of, from the inside out, Polak, Bullet Bob, Ozone Blue Chip, Clint Westwood, and Gotta Go BB. It's scheduled as the eighth race, with a post time of 3:10 PM EST.   The first of eleven races on the Saturday program at Freehold will be at 12:30 PM EST.   From Freehold Raceway      

Freehold, NJ --- Lyons Steel has been one of the hottest harness racing pacers on the east coast as of late, with four consecutive victories under his belt. He'll seek to make it five on Saturday at Freehold Raceway, as he takes on seven challengers in the Preferred Handicap pace.   The Dennis Watson-trained gelding is no stranger to Freehold: he's won four races there this year. Three starts back, he won the Preferred by half a length in a gate-to-wire effort, storming to a fast early lead and holding on for the win. Since that victory, he's shipped to Harrah's Philadelphia and Yonkers Raceway, and won at both tracks. He was assigned the outside post position eight for his return to the New Jersey half-miler, with Jack Baggitt Jr. down to drive.   Perhaps the toughest of his opponents will be Ginger Tree Marty, for Ron Burke. He was bet down to 4/5 favoritism in his most recent start at Freehold, but finished a fast-closing second behind Lyons Steel. He'll seek a rebound off an eighth-place finish at the Meadowlands last week, from post position six.   Three recent Freehold winners will also try their luck. Bullet Bob, a recent winner of the NW $5,000 class, and a two-time winner of the Preferred last year, drew post position three. Austin Siegelman drives for trainer Mark Harder.   Northern Virgin won the NW $6,000 class at 12/1 two races ago, and returns from a sixth-place finish at Yonkers. Steve Smith will drive for Nick Surick.   Andy Miller is named on Surick's other entrant, Rockin M, who won the Preferred over this track on October 5. He won the NW $8,000 by 3/4 of a length last week.   Drinkin Again, Texican, and Letschasethedreamn complete the field. The race is scheduled as the seventh on the ten-race card, with an approximate post time of 2:30 PM EST.   The first post at Freehold on Saturday is scheduled for 12:30 PM EST.   Freehold Raceway will kick off the new month on Friday (December 6) with a nine-race card, headlined by a carryover in the 50-cent pick 5. The sequence went unsolved on Saturday afternoon, leading to a carryover for Friday of $705.85. The wager begins in race 5, starting at 1:50 PM EST. Four eight-horse fields and one seven-horse field comprise the sequence. The day's feature race, the sixth race, will be the headliner. It's an upper-level filly and mare pace, drawing a field of eight. Fear My Shadow and Petal to the Metal, second and third at the level last week, return to competition. They drew post positions four and seven, respectively. Jimbelina was 3/5 in that race, but faded late to finish seventh. She'll seek a rebound from post position five. The first race at Freehold on Friday is scheduled for 12:30 PM EST. From Freehold Raceway    

Freehold, NJ --- Freehold Raceway hosted a preferred handicap harness racing pace and a preferred handicap trot on Saturday (November 16). Lean Hanover and Lyons Steel were the respective winners.   Sent off as the 4/5 favorite in the preferred handicap trot, Lean Hanover was sent after the early lead, but dropped into the pocket as they approached the half mile. Turning for home, Money Maven held on to the lead, but Jim Marohn Jr. angled Lean Hanover out for clear sailing, and he slingshotted by for a 1 3/4 length victory in 1:58.   The winner is owned by PC Wellwood Enterprises Inc and Karen Carroll, and trained by Linda Toscano. This is his fifth win of the year, and his third in his past five starts. Both of those earlier victories came at Yonkers Raceway.    Lyons Steel, off a win in the preferred pace last week, was sent off as 5/2 second choice in the field of seven. Jack Baggitt Jr. blasted off from the outside post, and put him on the lead through fast fractions. Approaching three-quarters, Lyons Steel and Born to be Bad, who rated off the leader throughout, had drawn seven lengths clear of third place.   Turning for home, Lyons Steel began to get leg-weary, and favored Ginger Tree Marty was rallying strongly in the center of the track. Lyons Steel was all-out, but the wire came just in time, and he won by 3/4 of a length in an impressive 1:53.1.   The winner is owned by BD Racing LLC and trained by Dennis Watson. This is the fourth win of the meet for the gelding, who has the fastest mark of anyone at Freehold this meet: 1:52.2.   Live racing resumes at Freehold on Friday, with a listed first post time of 12:30 PM EST.   From Freehold Raceway  

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 11, 2014 - Rock N' Roll World took the lead off the gate and never looked back, capturing the $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final for harness racing two-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Saturday, October 11, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. Jack Baggitt Jr. drove the 3-5 favorite, who covered the third-race mile over the sloppy track in 1:58 flat, finishing a length and a quarter ahead of Too Darn Hot. Both are sons of Rocknroll Hanover. It was five and a quarter lengths back to Devils Cut [Western Ideal] in third. Rock N' Roll World [$3.20] is a royally bred son out of $1.9 million-earner Worldly Beauty. Dam of Rock N' Roll World, Worldly Beauty seen here winning the 2003 Lady Liberty The Nifty Norman trainee is owned by Jeffrey Snyder of New York City and Three Decades RA of Moorestown, NJ. Bred by MJG Racing and Hill View Enterprises, he was a $125,000 Harrisburg Sale yearling purchase. To date, Rock N' Roll World has two wins, three seconds and one third from 10 starts and earnings of $84,503. Runner- up in the Sheppard Final at Yonkers, his prior win came in a division of the Geers at Tioga Downs. Rock N' Roll World In the second race, 1-2 favorite Evil Fight [Western Ideal] repelled challengers at the half and in the stretch to win a $7,000 Green Acres third leg for three-year-old pacing fillies in 1:56.4. It was three-quarters of a length back to Cut A Deal [Rocknroll Hanover] in second and three lengths to Fiyonce [Rocknroll Hanover] in third. Evil Fight [$3.00] was driven to victory by her owner-trainer Daryl Bier. She now has nine wins, two seconds and four thirds from 25 starts, earning nearly $55,000. She was unraced at two. The $25,000 New Jersey Futurity for three-year-old trotters drew four entrants: Angels Ransom, Sumatra, Choco Sun and Opulent Yankee. It will be contested as a non-wagering event at 12:15 p.m. on Thursday, October 16, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 10, 2014 - SS Poseidon, winner of the Harold Dancer Trot, added the $33,500 New Jersey Futurity to his list of stakes wins on Friday, October 10, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. The Futurity, restricted to New Jersey-sired two-year-old trotters, is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. SS Poseidon [Muscle Hill] was a two and a quarter-length winner over the filly Demons N Diamonds [Muscle Hill] in the open trot, carded as the third race. It was six lengths to Switchblade Hall [Muscles Yankee] in third. Steve Smith guided SS Poseidon, who paid $4.20 to win, to his third win in 10 starts. The Erv Miller trainee has finished in-the-money in eight of those starts. In addition to the Harold Dancer at Freehold, he also won a division of the Reynolds Stakes at Tioga Downs. The victory pushed the trotter's earnings to $105,255 for Paymaq Racing of Long Grove, IL and Shim Racing LLC of Deerfield, IL. In the co-featured $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final for two-year-old pacing fillies, the eighth race, Strut My Stuff was a half-length winner over the pacesetting Cheyenne Robin [Rocknroll Hanover] in a stakes record 1:55.3. Lissan [Rocknroll Hanover] was third by a length and a quarter. Strut My Stuff [$9.80], who captured the Lou Babic Filly in her prior start, extended her winning streak to four in the tenth start of her career. Jack Baggitt Jr. drove the Ross Croghan-trained daughter of Western Ideal who is owned by the Let It Ride Stables of Boca Raton, FL and RBH Ventures Inc. of New York, NY. She has a bankroll of $52,620. The clocking of 1:55.3 was a fifth of a second faster than the previous stakes record shared by Happy Dreamer [2007] and Cheyenne Robin [2013]. By Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ – October 2, 2014 – Robert M. Baggitt Sr. of Allentown, NJ, a longtime horse owner and a member of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association Board of Directors since 1985, passed away on Wednesday, October 1, 2014.  He was 81. Baggitt was on the owner, finance, pension and special events committees of the SBOANJ.  For many years, he co-chaired the SBOANJ’s golf outing, which each year raised money for the horsemen’s benevolent fund. He was a 34 year member and director of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association and a member of the U.S. Trotting Association. He was predeceased by his parents, William C. and Angela Mount Baggitt; a sister, Ann Baggitt, his brothers, Jack Baggitt and wife Joanne and William Baggitt; and brother-in-law, Arthur Smock. Surviving are his wife, Sandra Powers Baggitt; his children, Robert M. Baggitt, Jr. and his wife Christine, Ellen Cunningham and her husband Michael, Larry Baggitt and wife Tina, Timothy Baggitt and wife Kelly, Nancy and husband Robert Fitts; two sisters Rosemary Smock and June Higgins and her husband Larry; his grandchildren, Tyler Baggitt, Erica McDonald, Logan and Connor Cunningham, Alessandra, Lauren, Christina and Riley Baggitt; and  Bob J. and Jesse Fitts; great grandchildren Ella McDonald and Rylee Fitts; and many nieces and nephews. Visiting will be held at the Higgins Memorial Home, 20 Center Street, Freehold on Sunday from 2:00 to 4:00 and 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.  The Funeral Liturgy will be celebrated at St. Rose of Lima Church, Freehold on Monday at 10:00 a.m. followed by interment at St. Rose of Lima Cemetery.  IN lieu of flowers, memorial donations to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 would be appreciated. by Carol Hodes, for SBOA/NJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 27 2014 - Harness racing two-year-olds Dealt A Winner and Strut My Stuff won the Lou Babic Pace Finals for New Jersey-sired two-year-olds on Saturday, September 27, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. Dealt A Winner, a son of Cam's Card Shark, extended his winning streak to four and secured his fifth win in six career starts in the $100,000 Babic for colts, the ninth race. Sent off as the 1-9 favorite, the Ed Hart trainee drew away to an eight-length victory over Mitt Jagger [Rocknroll Hanover]. It was eight and a quarter lengths to Edward Teach [Rocknroll Hanover] in third. Dealt A Winner [$2.10], driven by Jason Bartlett, added the Babic title to wins in the Reynolds and Geers. He has now earned $119,879 for owner Jeffrey Snyder of New York City. In the $59,000 filly division, contested as the seventh race, 5-1 Strut My Stuff [Western Ideal] passed 1-5 Smart Zone [Rocknroll Hanover] in the stretch for the one-length victory in 1:57.4. It was two lengths to Hollyrocker [Rocknroll Hanover] in third. Strut My Stuff, driven by Jack Baggitt Jr. and trained by Ross Croghan, posted her Third Straight win and paid $12.20 to win. In nine starts, she has bankrolled $49,120 for the Let It Ride Stables of Boca Raton, FL and RBH Ventures Inc of New York City. Smart Zone, who held on for second, had her winning streak snapped at four. In a non-wagering New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings, Cheyenne Louie was a half-length winner over Card Shock in 1:55.3. Both are sons of Cam's Card Shark. It was a length to Nubble Light [Rocknroll Hanover] in third. The Harry Landy trained and driven Cheyenne Louie has won two straight and five of 17 this year for Glat Kosher Racing of Monroe, NJ. By Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 16, 2014 - Three of the six entrants in the $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stake - Green Acres Final for two-year-old trotting colts will carry the banner of trainer Ray Schnittker on Thursday, September 18, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. Schnittker will handle Broken Record, who leaves from post six while Jack Baggitt Jr. gets the call on Cruizinwithmuscles and Steve Smith will pilot Switchblade Hall in the non-wagering event scheduled for 12:10 p.m. All three of the Schnittker trainees are sons of Muscles Yankee, who sired five of the six finalists. Mountain Top, who won the first leg of the Green Acres, is by Muscle Hill, a son of Muscles Yankee. He is trained and driven by Francisco Del Cid. Broken Record is the richest of the six trotters with earnings of $47,013 thanks to three wins, one second and three thirds in eight starts. He posted a mark of 2:00.1 in the second leg of the Green Acres when he won by 27 ½ lengths over the Julie Miller-trained Firestop. With Broken Record sitting out the third leg of the Green Acres, it was left to Switchblade Hall to collect top money. Cruizinwithmuscles was fourth in the first leg and third in both the second and third legs. The field for the $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final [from the rail out with driver and trainer]: Cruizinwithmuscles, Jack Baggitt Jr., Ray Schnittker; Wolfpack Muscle, David Pinkney Jr., Colleen Chambers; Switchblade Hall, Steve Smith, Ray Schnittker; Firestop, Eric Abbatiello, Julie Miller; Mountain Top, Francisco Del Cid, Francisco Del Cid and Broken Record, Ray Schnittker, Ray Schnittker. A $7,000 opening leg of the Green Acres for three-year-old pacing fillies, will be the second of two non-wagering events with a quartet of entrants: Fiyonce, Fanticipation, Ideal Helen and Mona Mona. Ideal Helen is by Western Ideal while the other three are daughters of Rocknroll Hanover. Trotting fillies will be featured in second leg Green Acres events on Friday, September 19. In the sixth race for two-year-old trotting fillies, first leg winner Model Behavior [Muscles Yankee] will face off against Contraire [Muscles Yankee], Prinsessa [Muscle Hill], Showy Starlet [Muscles Yankee], Shes On Fire [Muscle Hill], Starter Up [Muscles Yankee] and Demons N Diamonds [Muscle Hill]. Only a trio of three-year-old trotting fillies will meet in a non-wagering event at 12:15 p.m. in a rematch of the opening leg won by Shelikescandy [Chocolatier], who has the rail. Runner-up Revergreen [Revenue] drew post three. Coin Collector [Chocolatier], who was third last week, leaves from post two. by Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 13, 2014 - Favorites dominated in a quartet of $7,000 legs of the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres for pacers on Saturday, September 13, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. The most dominant performance was by Smart Zone [Rocknroll Hanover] in a non-wagering division for two-year-old pacing fillies. The Erv Miller trainee collected her fourth straight win. Steve Smith was at the lines as Smart Zone scored a five and three-quarter length victory over Lissan [Rocknroll Hanover]. It was seven and a quarter back to Cheyenne Robin [Rocknroll Hanover] in third. Smart Zone, who paced the mile in 1:56.3, races for Paymaq Racing of Long Grove, IL and D&M Trading of Chicago, IL. She now has four wins and two thirds in nine starts for earnings of more than $33,500. The second division for two-year-old pacing fillies, carded as the tenth race, went to 1-9 favorite Strut My Stuff [Western Ideal] who was a one-length winner over Hollyrocker [Rocknroll Hanover] in 1:59.3 on a track rated sloppy. Rocknroll Olivia [Rocknroll Hanover] was third by a length and a half. Strut My Stuff [$2.10], driven by Jack Baggitt Jr. and trained by Ross Croghan, picked up her second straight win in eight starts, pushing her earnings over $10,000 for Let It Ride Stables of Boca Raton, FL and RBH Ventures of New York City. The focus was on two-year-old pacing colts in the third race as 1-9 Too Darn Hot [Rocknroll Hanover] held off Devils Cut [Western Ideal] for a neck victory in 1:59. Boulder Roller [Rocknroll Hanover] was third by seven and a quarter. Too Darn Hot [$2.10], a Ron Burke trainee, cut the fractions as Devils Cut drafted behind him until challenging in the stretch. Too Darn Hot held on for his fourth win with two seconds in seven starts, pushing his earnings over $45,000 for Burke Racing Stable, Our Horse Cents Stables, Weaver Bruscemi and Larry Karr. In the eighth race for three-year-old pacing colts, 3-5 Art History took the lead off the gate and extended it the stretch for a three and a quarter tally in 1:55.4 on a sloppy track. In the photo for second, Nubble Light [Rocknroll Hanover] edged out In The Clear [Western Ideal]. Art History [$3.40], a Western Ideal gelding, was piloted by Pat Berry for trainer Steve Elliott. This year he has three wins, one second and three thirds from nine starts for earnings of $31,840. Art History races in the name of his breeders, Kenneth Klein of Armonk, NY and the Old Block Stables of New York City. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 5, 2014 - A well-balanced field of eight three-year-old pacing colts and geldings, including New Jersey Classic winner Sweet Rock, will face-off in the $42,000 New Jersey Futurity, the ninth race on Saturday, September 6, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. Sweet Rock rallied for a nose victory in the $225,000 Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic on August 2 at the Meadowlands in a lifetime best of 1:49.4. In his last start, the $54,072 Geers at Tioga Downs on August 17, he was third. The Wayne Givens trainee, driven by Brett Miller, has been rated 9-2 in the morning line from post eight. This year, he has two wins, four seconds and two thirds from 15 starts, banking $142,133 toward a career total of $167,391 for the Delaware-based ownership of Legacy Racing, RA Hazzard and GP Calloway. Art History [Western Ideal] was given the slight 3-1 morning line nod from the rail with Hall of Famer David Miller driving. Art History, trained by Steve Elliott, has two wins and three thirds in seven starts this year, banking $17,840 for Kenneth Klein of Amonk, NY and the Old Block Stables of New York City. The Tony Alagna-trained Gold Rocks [Rocknroll Hanover] will be paired with driver George Brennan, leaving from post five, and is rated 7-2 in the morning line. The New Jersey Futurity is restricted to New Jersey-sired horses and is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. The field for the $42,000 New Jersey Futurity [3yo open division] with sire, driver, trainer and morning line odds: 1-Art History-Western Ideal-David Miller-Steve Elliott-3-1 2-Card Shock-Cam's Card Shark-Daniel Dube-Mark Silva-10-1 3-Earthshaker-Rocknroll Hanover-Eric Abbatiello-James Petruccelli-6-1 4-Nubble Light-Rocknroll Hanover-Steve Smith-Deleston Cote-9-1 5-Gold Rocks-Rocknroll Hanover-George Brennan-Tony Alanga-7-2 6-Cheyenne Seeber-Rocknroll Hanover-Jack Baggitt Jr.-Robert Siegelman-30-1 7-Rocknroll Reality-Rocknroll Hanover-Andrew McCarthy-John Butenschoen-9-2 8-Sweet Rock-Rocknroll Hanmover-Brett Miller-Wayne Givens-9-2. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 1, 2014 - Too Darn Hot was too much the best, winning the $7,000 opening leg of the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings at Freehold Raceway on Labor Day, September 1, 2014. Driven by Eric Abbatiello and trained by Ron Burke, Too Darn Hot scored an easy five and a quarter length victory in 1:59 flat in the co-featured eighth race. Skullhouse Raider [Cam's Card Shark] edged out Devil's Cut [Western Ideal] for second. Too Darn Hot [$2.20], as on of Rocknroll Hanover, has been first or second in five of seven starts, banking $33,475 for the ownership of Burke Racing Stable of Fredericktown, PA; Our Horse Cents Stables of Clifton Park, NY; Weaver Bruscemi LLC of Canonsburg, PA and Lawrence Karr of Randolph, NJ. In a pair of $7,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes-Green Acres for two-year-old pacing fillies, one division was a stretch battle with a narrow margin of victory and another was a wire-to-wire tally, extending a winning streak to three. In the second race, Smart Zone by Rocknroll Hanover, drew off to a five and three-quarter length victory in 1:56.1 after leading at every call. The Erv Miller trainee, in the hands of Steve Smith, has won three in a row and finished in-the-money in five of eight starts. Lissan was second best and it was eight lengths to Cheyenne Robin in third. Both are daughters of Rocknroll Hanover. Smart Zone paid $2.40 to win and pushed her career bankroll over $30,000 for Paymaq Racing of Long Grove, IL and D&M trading LLC of Chicago, IL. Strut My Stuff by Western Ideal won the second division, the third, racing, prevailing by a neck over Crescent City in a closely contested duel. Jack Baggitt Jr. was at the lines of the Ross Croghan trainee who paced the mile in 1:58.1. She paid $8.20 to win. Runner-up Crescent City and Hollyrocker, who was six and a half lengths back in third, are both by Rocknroll Hanover. It was Strut My Stuff's first win in seven starts. She is owned by Let It Ride Stables of Boca Raton, FL and RBH Ventures Inc. of New York City. Green Acres action at Freehold continues on Thursday with the second leg of two-year-old trotting colts and geldings with six going postward in a non-wagering event at 12:10 p.m. The six, in post order, are Algorithm, Broken Record, Cruizinwithmuscles, Firestop, Switchblade Hall and El Diablo BR. Algorithm and El Diablo BR are sons of Muscle Hill. The others are by Muscles Yankee. The $40,000 estimated Marion Dancer Final for New Jersey-sired two-year-old trotting fillies will also be a non-wagering race and is scheduled for 12:20 p.m. Three fillies dropped in the box: Southwind Cartier by Muscle Hill, Showy Starlet by Muscles Yankee and Rules of the Road by Muscle Hill. The Marion Dancer's stakes record of 1:59 was set by Lovely in 2005. The Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey sponsors the Marion Dancer. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

A nearly horrific accident marred the fourth race $10,000 claiming pace at Freehold Raceway Saturday. Fortunately all eight harness racing drivers and horses were able to walk off the track and none required the assistance of an ambulance.

Jack Baggitt Jr is certainly no stranger to the harness racing business, but he's a new addition to Ocean Downs in Maryland. Meet Jack and find out about his great career.

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