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Today’s Ulf Thoresen Grand International (purse to winner 250,000Nok, 2100 meters autostart, 10 starters) at Jarlsberg, Travbane in Norway, went to the impressive Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers-Moorea-Baccarat du Pont) timed in 1.11.9kr and reined by Vidar Hop. The Frode Hamre trainee is owned in France by J.M. Rancoule and was developed by J.M. Bazire, and the win was his third in 2020 and 23 in his 74 race career. His earnings are now 9.966,344Nok. He was off at 4.35/1 odds. Ble du Gers made a three wide rush to the lead with about 400 meters remaining and it was no contest thereafter. Varenne FAS (5m Varenne-Miss Muscle FAS-Muscles Yankee) followed the winner with Tom Erik Solberg aboard for trainer Jerry Riordan. Third home was Floris Baldwin (8g Passing Renka-Tanja de Bruin-Dante Buitenzorg) with Kristian Malmin the pilot. Ferrari BR and Lionel finished fourth and fifth. Ble du Gers   Replay -https://www.rikstoto.no/Videoarkiv/Siste?type=RaceVideo&play=JA_NR_2020-07-05%239 The winner’s pedigree follows.   Earlier in the day the Stayerlopp (100,000Nok to the winner, 3100 meters voltstart, 15 starters) was won by Etna Sisu (6f From Above-Swift Lady Cash-Cash Hall) with Anders Andersen driving. Noble Superb was second despite a 60 meter handicap. Etna Sisu Also, the Anders Jahres (100,000Nor first money, 2100 meters autostart) was on the card and Kick Off Classic (7m Quite Easy-Kicking Promessa-Chergon) scored for Kristian Malmin. Kickoff Classic Jarlsberg Travbane, Maharajah, ATG files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

July 7, 2017 - Friday’s Grand Prix Champion Jarlsberg was raced in two eliminations and a final for Norway’s best harness racing four year-old trotters. The eliminations and final were raced over 1609 meters autostart (one mile) with the elims carrying a purse of 65,000NOk (30,000NOk to the winner. Purse for the final was 600,000NOk (300,000NOk to the winner). In the final 3.8/1 Phantasm SOA (4m Cromwell-Uiver H-Uxer LM), off at 3.8/1 second choice, raced third over for driver Asbjorn Tengsareid before starting a three wide move midway on the backside of the second lap. In the lane the winner surged forward to score by a length timed in a record 1.09.8kr (1:52.31 mile rate). Phantasm finished second in elim one to 1.10.5kr timed Cokstile (4m Quite Easy-Joystile-Coktail Jet) driven by Kars Anvar Kolle, the horse that was second, as the 2/1 favorite, in the final. Shotproof (4m Yankee Glide-Shadowshot-Malabar Man) was third in the final for driver Flemming Jensen, after winning elim two clocked in 1.11.5kr. In elim one Forever Peace (4m Muscle Hill-Peaceful Way-Angus Hall) finished third for Erlend Rennesvik. In elim two Always On Time (4m Revenue-Pimafarina-Windsongs Legacy) was second and third went to Chief Orlando (4m Orlando Vici-Muito Bonita-Felix Santana) driven by Frode Hamre that was off as 2.6/1 favorite. Interestingly, the winning sire (Cromwell) has NY roots, being by Credit Winner-Skeptical Miss-Sir Taurus-Gilina-Speedy Somolli). This 2002 foal won the Zweig Memorial at age three, was exported and finished third in the Orsi Mangelli before competing in upper classes in Europe through age seven earning about US$500,000. He was a sharp individual with a slick gait that Phantasm reminds me of. Thomas H. Hicks

July 9, 2017 - Today’s Jarlsberg feature event was the Gr. I Ulf Thoresen Grand International (2100 meters autostart, 750,000NOk to the winner). Twister Bi (5m Varenne-Lorraine Bi) was placed directly on the lead from post two by driver Christoffer Eriksson, rated comfortably, and drew off with 500 meters remaining to secure a five length victory for trainer Jerry Riordan, timed in 1.10.4kr. Twister Bi recorded his fourth win in eight 2017 starts, now for 4,907,005NOk earned in a successful and emerging career. An elated Riordan stated on post race interview that his charge is a happy horse that was just rolling along in the final 400. Oasis Bi (9m Toss Out-Up Front JM) sat the pocket for driver Erik Adielsson but lost the second spot to fast closing Lionel (7m Look de Star-Aurora Sign) and driver/owner Goran Antonsen for trainer Daniel Reden. The secondary feature this day was the Anders Jahres (2100 meters autostart, 200,000SEK to the winner) and the 1.11.2kr timed winner was Djali Boko (7m Ready Cash-Lucky Lavec) that moved decisively in the final bend and jetted off to an easy score for reinsman Adrian Kolgjini and trainer Lutfi Kolgjini. Nappa Scar (5m Scarlet Knight-Butterfly Player) was the second horse home for trainer/driver Per Lennartson. Bjorn Goop piloted the Jerry Riordan trainee Tango Negro (5m Infinitif-Lisetta Real) to a third place finish. Also on the undercard was the Felleokjopets (2100 meters autostart, 75,000NOk to winner) with victory going to Ferrari BR (4m Muscles Yankee-Bauxite) timed in 1.13.2kr for trainer/driver Per Oleg Midtfjeld, who campaigned Cromwell (sire of Phantasm SOA) throughout most of his European racing career. Second in this event was the Jerry Riordan trainee Umberto Axe (4m Love You-Ira Furiosa Spin) driven by Tom Eric Solberg. Defy Anything (5f Cantab Hall-Flirtin Victory) took third for driver Erik Adielsson and trainer Flemming Jensen. Thomas H. Hicks

Today’s Gr. I International Ulf Thoresens at Jarlsberg Norway went to 1.1/1 Sauveur (6m Echo-Operah Bob) with harness racing trainer Ake Lindblom driving for owner Hammab AB of Sweden. Timed in 1.11.23kr the winner secured the winners’ share of the €105,300 purse in the 2100 meter autostart event that was part of the V75 wagering card. 9.5/1 Ringostarr Treb (6m Classic Photo-Farsalo Egral) took second for driver Wim Paal and trainer Holger K. Ehlert. Third was the game 18.4/1 Rod Stewart (6m Love You-Valley Lane) for Tom Erik Solberg and trainer Jerry Riordan for Italian owner Cezziano Ceccaroni. 43/1 Repay Merci (8m Offshore Dream-News From Heaven) was fourth for trainer/driver Knud Monster and Denmark owner Stald Repay. Papagayo E and Anna Mix were the next two across the line. The undercard included the Anders Jahres (400,000Nokr to the winner, 2100 meters autostart) and the 1.11.7kr timed winner was Je T’Aime Express (5f Symphonic Hanover-Je T’Aime Marran-Sugarcane Hanover) for driver Peter Untersteiner. Second went to DD’s Hitman (5f Donato Hanover-Deedee’s Destiny-Muscles Yankee) and driver Peter Ingves with third to Spirit Real (5f Supergill-Civetta Real-Park Avenue Joe) handled by Tom Erik Solberg. Thomas H. Hicks

July 5, 2015 - Today’s Ulf Thoresens Minnelopp (500,000Nok to winner, three year-olds, 2100 meters autostart) at Jarlsberg went to Italy’s Tuonoblu Rex (3m Cantab Hall-Eternity Rex-Lindy Land-CR Kay Suzie) with Robin Bakker teaming. The 1.8/1 favorite scored in 1.13.4kr in a driving finish over Italy’s Tango Negro (3m Infinitif-Lisetta Real-Lemon Dra) teamed by Bjorn Goop for trainer Jerry Riordan and owner Ceccaroni Graziano. US-bred RG’s Thunderbolt (3m Yankee Glide-Lady In The Wind-Windsong’s Legacy-Dreamland’s Oolong) was third for Frode Hamre. The Anders Jahres Pokallopp (four and five year-olds, 300,000Nor to winner, 2100 meters autostart) at the same venue went to Norway’s Papagayo E (5m Coktail Jet-Ann Speedy T-Speedy Tomali) for Vidar Hop at 2/1 and clocked in a speedy 1.10.6kr. Italy’s Rod Stewart (5m Love You-Valley Lane-Lindy Lane) was second for Bjorn Goop, trainer Jerry Riordan and owner Ceccaroni Graziano. US-bred and owned (Adam S. Bowden) Creatine (5m Andover Hall-Berry Nice Muscles-Muscles Yankee) was third for Johnny Takter in his first start for the Takter team. The 1.3/1 odds US-bred Windy Ways (5f Conway Hall-Southwind Flanders-Lindy Lane) comfortably won the Yarrah Boko Stolopp (100,000Nok to winner, 2100 meters autostart) clocked in 1.12.9kr for teamster Erik Adielsson and trainer Daniel Reden. Stall Zet owns this one, now showing a slate of 14-4-1 in 28 starts for 1,076,000Nok earned. On Saturday at Halmstad US-breds performed well. The StoSprintern Final (1609 meters autostart, 564,576SEK to winner) went to the 1.11kr winner Heaven’s Door (4f Muscle Hill-Girlie Tough-Conway Hall) with Ulf Ohlsson up. Diamond River (4f Ready Cash-First Out-Lemon Dra) was three-length behind in second for Stefan Soderkvist. The same day at Halmstad the V75 Gold (2140 meters autostart, 150,000SEK to winner) went to El Mago Pellini (6m Chocolatier-My Intuition-Andover Hall) for Adrian Kolgjini timed in 1.11kr. Nothing But Class (6m Andover Hall-Bold Dreamer-Donerail) took second for Peter Untersteiner, three lengths from the winner. The AM Bloodstock (1609 meters autostart, 100,000SEK to the winner) went to the quick 1.09.7kr winner Your Highness (6f Chocolatier-La Belle Lady-Conway Hall) with Bjorn Goop driving. Fleetfoot Hanover (8f Andover Hall-Firefly Annie-SJ’s Photo) was second for Peter Untersteiner and timed in 1.09.9kr. Thomas H. Hicks  

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