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HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Diditagain Hanover 'did it again' at Buffalo Raceway as the 6-year-old gelding won his fifth straight race with a half-length victory over Rock N Roll Legend in the featured $10,500 Open Pace in 1:55.4 over the fast track.   After racing in the $10,000 optional claiming ranks a little more than a month ago, Diditagain Hanover has progressively and successfully stepped up the ladder and reached top rung this week. He showed he was ready for the challenge against the best pacers on the grounds.   It was a slightly different tactic used by Diditagain Hanover ($4.20) and driver Kevin Cummings. Usually coming off the pace, Diditagain Hanover, who scored from the rail, went to the top and didn't look back. After putting up fractions of 29, 58.2 and 1:27, the 28.4 final panel proved to be just enough to hold off the late charge from Rock N Roll Legend (Jack Flanigen). Western Alumni (Jim McNeight) took third place position.   The victory was the sixth in Diditagain Hanover's last seven starts and seventh win of the season. He is owned by Thomas Mazzone and trained by Lisa Zgodzinski. The win sent his winnings to $29,746 in 2014 and $149,989 lifetime.   Racing will resume on Wednesday night at Buffalo Raceway with an 11-race program slated for 5 p.m.   For more information including upcoming promotions, race replays, results and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Heartsaregonnaroll was the 'Queen of the Night' at Buffalo Raceway Friday evening (April 11) as the lone harness racing mare in the field flexed her muscles and went wire-to-wire to snag the $10,500 Open Trot in a seasonal best time of 1:58.3 over the fast track.   The heavily-favored Heartsaregonnaroll ($3.80) didn't break any hearts as she managed to post the half-length victory over Justgottogetthere (Jim McNeight) and Talladega Hanover (John Cummings). In the stretch, the winner trotted smartly to the finish as the remaining field of gentlemen failed to mount any challenges.   Sent right to the lead by driver Ronnie Wrenn Jr., Heartsaregonnaroll posted marks of 29.3, 59.0, 1:29.0 in posting her third victory in 13 starts. The steady and consistent 5-year-old mare has been in the money nine times this season, earning $27,181 for owners Paul and Ronald Viele. Alex Giuliani trained Heartsaregonnaroll (Hard Rock N Roll-Primrose Hanover), now a winner of $108,617 lifetime.   The action continues at Buffalo Raceway on Saturday night when a 12-race card will go to the post at 6:40 p.m. The featured $10,500 Open Pace is slated for the eighth race.   For more information including race replays, results, upcoming promotions and news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- It was a sloppy track with a race surface that favored front runners.   That was the perfect recipe once again for Lutetium as he scored his third straight convincing victory in winning the $10,500 Open Trot at Buffalo Raceway Friday night (April 4).   The front-running and off-track loving Lutetium ($2.80) bolted right to the top at the start of the race and played catch me if you can with the rest of the field.   After posting fractions of 29, 1:01.1 and 1:31.2, the race to the wire wasn't a matter of who was going to win but by how much. Lutetium (Kevin Cummings) enjoyed a six-length edge at the top of the stretch as the rest of the field threw in the towel. He was throttled down by mid-stretch as Heartsaregonnaroll (Jim McNeight) was a distant second and Studio City (Aaron Byron) third.   The margin of victory for Lutetium (Credit Winner-Luby) was 3-1/4 lengths after splashing and dashing to a winning time of 2:01.4.   It was the third win in eight appearances this season for Lutetium, who is owned by Colleen Girdlestone and trained by Mark Laidlaw. The win pushed the 7-year-old gelding's bank to $18,585 in 2014 and $204,291 lifetime.   A solid 13-race card is planned for Saturday night at Buffalo Raceway with the call to post slated for 6:40 p.m. The rescheduled $22,500 Michael Scores Knockout Claiming Series finals will go off as the sixth race and the $10,500 Open Pace set as the eighth race.   For more information, including upcoming promotions, race replays, results and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Salazar made an early first-over move and kept right on going in registering an easy four length victory over Sand Savage in the featured $10,500 Open Pace at Buffalo Raceway on Saturday night (March 22).   Sitting sixth before the half-mile marker, the favored Salazar ($4.80) and driver Ronnie Wrenn Jr. were already out and and winging. Getting the lead past the three-quarter pole, it was Salazar's race to win or lose. The 8-year-old gelding enjoyed a half-length edge at the top of the stretch and used a 28.4 last panel to smartly pace away from his six competitors, stopping the timer in a seasonal best of 1:55.2.   Sand Savage (Drew Monti) took the place position while Naked News (Jim McNeight) finished in third.   Salazar, owned by Lisa Denison and trained by Lisa Lederhouse, has now won twice in nine appearances this season and pushed his bankroll to $18,257 in 2014 and $236,841 lifetime.   In the $8,000 semi-finals of the Michael Scores Knockout Claiming Series, Bob's Alibi (Ray Fisher Jr.) took the opening division in 1:58.4 while the second leg was won by Mr. Casual (Kevin Cummings) in 1:58.3. They both will return next Saturday night for the $22,500 finals along with Enzo Seelster, Auditorial, Ol' Man River, Catman, Four Hoof Drive and Classic Camelot.   Racing will resume on Wednesday night at Buffalo Raceway with a 10-race card set to begin at 5:00 p.m. There will be racing this Thursday night as well as this day was added to the schedule as a makeup for a previous cancelled program. The post will also be 5 p.m.   For more information including race results, replays, upcoming promotions and news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com/   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway  

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Armed Dangerously needed everything in his arsenal to hang on for a nose victory over a hard-charging Fiorentina in the harness racing featured $10,500 Open Trot at Buffalo Raceway Friday night (March 21) in a lifetime best of 1:58.1.  It took every step for Armed Dangerously to capture his third victory in six starts in 2014. After finally disposing of a parked Detailer just past the half mile, Armed Dangerously had to prep himself for the stretch battle with the pocket-sitting Fiorentina.   In the lane, Fiorentina (Ronnie Wrenn Jr.) kept inching closer on the outside but ran out of real estate as Armed Dangerously ($6.10) and driver Ray Fisher Jr. had just enough ammunition left to shoot down the late challenge. Ilovemymommy (Jim McNeight) took the show position.   Owned by Michael Torcello and trained by Gerry Sarama, Armed Dangerously, a 5-year-old horse, has now been in the money five of six starts in 2014 and improved his bankroll to $17,528 this season and $160,528 lifetime.   The action continues on Saturday night at Buffalo Raceway with a 12-race card scheduled to get underway at 6:40 p.m. The $10,500 Open Pace is on tap along with the semi-finals of the Michael Scores Knockout Claiming Series.    For more information including race replays, results, promotions and latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Running Book is currently like a fine wine...he's getting better with age. The 10-year-old Running Book proved he's still got plenty left in the tank as he buried seven harness racing rivals in the $10,500 Open Pace at Buffalo Raceway Saturday night (March 8).   With driver Ronnie Wrenn Jr. in the sulky, Running Book ($4.30) blasted off the starting gate and never looked back in posting an impressive 6-1/4 length win over Naked News (Jim McNeight) in a seasonal-best of 1:54.4 over the fast track. Salazar (Shawn McDonough) picked up the show dough.   After a rather routine opening half mile of 58.0, Running Book and Wrenn Jr. bottomed out the field with a 56.4 last half. It proved more than enough as the pair looked around for oncoming competition in the stretch but found no takers.   Trained by Buffalo Raceway's leading conditioner JD Perrin, Running Book has now scored three wins in eight starts this season for owner Tessa Roland. He's earned $16,775 in 2014 and has 35 career victories and $652,825 lifetime winnings.   The racing action resumes at Buffalo Raceway on Wednesday night with a 12-race card slated to begin at 5 p.m.   For more information including the latest news, results, replays and upcoming promotions, go to www.buffaloraceway.com/   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway      

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Ellisarro Hanover used a big brush down the backstretch to the three-quarter pole and took off from there to notch an impressive 6-3/4 length victory in the $10,500 Open Trot at Buffalo Raceway Friday night (Jan. 31)   Fiorentina (Aaron Byron) had laid down a 58.4 opening half mile over the fast track but Ellisarro Hanover (Peter Wrenn) went first over at that point and were out and moving as the field of seven went down the backstretch the final time.   After hitting the three-quarter marker in 1:28.2, Ellisarro Hanover ran away from the field, stopping the clock in 1:57.1, the fastest mile of 2014 for the trotters at Buffalo Raceway. He was also helped as RA's Shakenbake broke at the top of the stretch which crippled the hopes of anyone catching Ellisarro Hanover.   Studio City (Billy Dobson) took the place position while Lutetium (Jim McNeight) finished in third.   Owned by Robert Main and trained by Jason Robinson, the 7-year-old Ellisarro Hanover (PJ's Photo-Esmeralda Hanover) won for the first time in five starts this season but increased his bankroll to $12,040 and $318,930 lifetime.   The action will continue on Saturday night at Buffalo Raceway with an 11-race card slated for 6:40 p.m. The feature is the $10,500 Open Pace which is slated for the seventh race.   For more information including race results, replays, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway  

HAMBURG, NY --- It may be early January in Western New York but things will be heating up at Buffalo Raceway on Wednesday, January 8th as the 99-day 2014 harness racing season opens up at the half-mile oval, located at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg. Buffalo Raceway has reaped the benefits of early-season racing in recent years and Chief Operating Officer Jim Mango said the track needs to take advantage of it once again. "We've had such good success the past few seasons with racing in January, February and March," Mango said. "We are one of the few tracks who are still willing to race then...it gives us great exposure and brings in some good drivers and horses." Mango pointed out that Buffalo Raceway's export signal attracted $10.3 million in handle in 2011 and $15.3 million in 2013. "That's a 50 percent growth since 2011," Mango said. "Part of the success goes to the relationship we have with our guest sites, and getting us national outlets like Twin Spires and TVG." Mango went on to say, "The winter racing is well received by the horsemen and it gives drivers from the East some opportunities. We have had a pretty good driver's colony here the first few months the past few seasons and I don't see any reason that won't happen again this year. There should be some fierce competition." Buffalo Raceway will race on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights in January. Post time is 5 p.m. on Wednesdays and 6:40 p.m. on Friday and Saturday evenings. In February and March, Thursdays will be added with 5 p.m start time. "We've had reasonable success on Thursdays but we are starting it in February this year and hope to take advantage of a lull in racing across the country," Mango said. "The 5 p.m. post time...there's not much competition and we are trying to take advantage of it, and there seems to be plenty of horses to race." Mango went on to say, "Mickey Mantle will never hit another home run again and we know we'll never attract the crowds like we did back in the 1960s. It's just the reality. Horse racing is all simulcast-based now and we have to realize it." While Mango admits wagering on-line continues to grow, Buffalo Raceway will do some promotions to bring fans in. "We got sports giveaways this year...hockey pucks, baseballs, basketballs, footballs with our logo on it. We are trying to add a little fun for those coming out." The track continues to improve its backstretch and something that Mango is very extremely proud of. "There's not anyone that isn't impressed with our barns or state-of-the-art paddock. I will argue with anyone that we have the best backstretch in the country, thoroughbred or harness racing." "We've honored our commitment to New York State as a race track and gaming facility," Mango said. "A lot of tracks across the country have ignored the stable area. We thought it a necessary improvement. I hear from horsemen daily who say they can't wait to get back to Buffalo because of the back side." Buffalo Raceway has filled the more than 400 stalls on the grounds for 2014 and as Mango put it, "We could have easily filled over 600. That's why we race as much in the winter as we have a lot of people who want to compete." Besides the impressive barns and paddock, the track has improved its track lighting this season which will only help the simulcast signal. With new graphics and cameras installed last season, Buffalo Raceway is ready to compete with the best in the country in distributing the best signal possible. Mango added that the track is better than ever with more material put down and turns are properly banked. "It is a daunting task to keep the track in racing shape during the winter months in Western New York. I think that our track crew does a pretty good job." The fans will also notice a change in the race calls. Michael Carter takes over the announcer's booth as previous caller Gabe Prewitt is now at Pompano Park in Florida. Ray Fisher Jr. will return to defending his 2013 driving title at Buffalo Raceway. He was named "Driver of the Year" in Western New York after his second place finish in the standings at the recently completed Batavia Downs meet. Drivers coming in for the first few months aren't known yet, but it is expected that drivers from Saratoga and Vernon will once again compete. Mango said nothing is definite but has heard Shawn Gray may also "pop in on weekends" to race. Also back will be perennial leading drivers Dave McNeight III, Kevin Cummings, Jack Flanigen, Ron Beback Jr. and Jim McNeight. Expect the trainer's battle to a good one as well with J.D. Perrin the reigning champion at Buffalo Raceway. John Mungillo took the title at Batavia Downs and should arrive with a powerful stable once again. Jim Graham and David McNeight Jr. are also top conditioners expected to arrive with strong stables. On the wagering side, the highlight once again will be the $5,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 every Wednesday starting in the fifth race. The guaranteed pool is part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering Program. It is also co-sponsored by Buffalo Raceway and the Western New York Harness Horsemen's Association. Mango said in closing, "I think the past few years our racing product and competition has improved. People have seen what we've had to offer and it's helped us." Buffalo Raceway is located on The Fairgrounds in Hamburg, New York. Admission and parking are always free to the Raceway, for all ages. Reservations for live racing nights can be made by calling 716-649-1280 ext 300. Seasonal harness racing takes place January through July Wednesday at 5:00 pm, Friday and Saturday at 6:40 pm. Simulcast wagering from across North America is available year round Wednesday through Sunday. For more information visit www.buffaloraceway.com or call (716) 649-1280. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway        

BATAVIA, NY --- America's oldest lighted harness track, Batavia Downs Gaming, concluded its 67th season of live harness racing on Saturday night (Dec.7) with a 13-race program, billed as the Night of Distinction. Awards were presented in several categories by the President of Upstate NY Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association, Tim Bojarski. Also trackside was delegate Sam Pendolino. Closing night featured a must pay out Pick-6 contest that over 300 racing fans participated in. Steven Bennett of Rochester and Daniel Coughlin of nearby Oakfield, picked the most winners and took home $500 each. For the second consecutive week, Dont Say Goodby ($16.60) used a strong drive in the lane to rally from far back and capture the featured $8,500 Open Pace in 1:54.4 over the fast track. OK Braveheart (Ken Holliday) sent the fractions of 27.1, 56.2 and 1:25.3 but called it a night just past the three-quarter marker. But it was a wake-up call for Dont Say Goodby there as driver Drew Monti sent him four-wide around the final turn and was by far the strongest in the race to the wire. He finished a length in front of Unicorn Hanover (Jim McNeight) while JS Tango (Ray Fisher Jr.) finished in third. "He's a really good horse," Rising Star Award recipient Drew Monti said. You just have to point him, he was loaded (with pace) at the wire. Trained by Charles Stewart and owned by Derek Menchhofer, Dont Say Goodby has now won seven times and has earned $67,827 this season and $165,487 lifetime. The meets dash leading reinsman, Shawn McDonough, ended the Western New York racing season with a driving four-bagger. John Mungillo was the Downs top conditioner. Live racing is tentatively scheduled to resume at Batavia Downs on Wednesday, July 23, 2014, pending New York Gaming Commission approval. Effective Sunday, December 8, simulcasting wagering is offered on a daily basis. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs

BATAVIA, N.Y. --- Detailer and driver David McNeight III beat Lutetium at his own game Friday night (Nov. 29) and took the $8,500 Open Trot at a frigid Batavia Downs.   Lutetium had won the previous two weeks with wire-to-wire victories in the Open Trot. It was a different story this week. Lutetium was assigned the eight post and couldn't beat the 6-year-old Detailer, who drew the four post, to the lead.   Detailer ($6.70) posted fractions of :28.4, 1:00, 1:30 and used a 28.4 final quarter to hold off the pocket-sitting Lutetium (Kevin Cummings) by a length in 1:58.4 over the fast track. Haste (Jim McNeight) got up for the show spot.   Owned and trained by David McNeight Jr., Detailer (Armbro Tropicana-Just Having Fun) has now won five times this season and has earned $53,850 and $164,316 lifetime.   Dave McNeight III, Jack Flanigen and Ray Fisher Jr. each had driving triples on the evening.   There will be a 13-race card on Saturday night starting at 6:30 p.m. when the racing resumes at Batavia Downs. The feature is the $8,500 Open Pace and it will go off in the sixth race on the program. It has attracted a field of seven with Unicorn Hanover the 5-2 morning line favorite with Ron Beback Jr. in the bike. There are just four racing nights left on the 2013 calendar.   For more information including race replays, upcoming promotions, statistics and the latest news, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing.   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs  

Batavia, NY --- Thanksgiving is set for Thursday but Wednesday night (Nov. 27) at Batavia Downs, the true meaning and spirit of the holiday season will be front and center as many in the driver's colony, along with trainers and owners, will be donating their earnings from the 12-race program in support of Harrah's Philadelphia driver Anthony Coletta who was seriously injured in an on-track accident last Sunday (Nov. 17). The Western New York Harness Horsemen's Association will be making a donation on behalf of all the local horsemen to the Anthony Coletta Fund. But drivers John Cummings, Jr., Ken Holliday, Shawn McDonough, Ray Fisher, Jr., David McNeight III, Drew Monti, Jim McNeight, Kevin Cummings, Ronnie Wrenn, Jr. and Denny Bucceri, along with trainers Ryan Swift and David McNeight, Jr., are taking it a step further. They are giving their entire night's earnings to the "Stay Strong Anthony Coletta" fund. Shawn McDonough, Batavia Downs' current leading driver, was the first to commit for the Coletta cause. He said, "I've never met him but I just want to support another driver and his family. It's Thanksgiving time and it just seemed like the right thing to do." The owners of Puff Mommy, My Red Hot Momma, Artsy Princess and Self Professed will contribute 10 percent of their earnings on Wednesday night to the cause. Batavia Downs' effort is being spearheaded by assistant parade marshall Jami Chatt, whose grandfather is former Western New York driving great Fred Haslip and mother is Cherie Chatt, who also was a driver. Chatt, who has never met Anthony Coletta, said, "Sometimes people tend to forget the dangers these drivers put themselves in so we can make a living or find enjoyment in the sport. I just want to help make the financial stress easier on Anthony's family." Besides the Batavia Downs drivers, trainers and owners giving their purse winnings on Wednesday, donations will be accepted at the track for those fans wanting to contribute to the "Stay Strong Anthony Coletta" fund. Fans will also be able to bid on a Batavia Downs Gaming package valued at $250, courtesy of the WNYHHA. The package includes one night hotel accommodations at the Clarion Hotel in Batavia, $50 in food and $100 in gaming free play for Batavia Downs Gaming. The silent auction begins at 5 p.m. in the Paddock Room. Todd Haight, Batavia Downs' General Manager of Live Racing, said, "I've always said the Western New York horsemen are extremely generous people. Wednesday should be a very special night around here. Now, hopefully the weather will cooperate." Batavia Downs is one of many tracks and organizations throughout North America that have stepped up and started fundraising campaigns for Coletta. It is hopeful that wristbands will arrive in time for Wednesday's card that fan can purchase in support of Coletta. For those not attending the races but who want to help out, a fund has been set up. You can make a contribution to the "Stay Strong Anthony Coletta" Fund, c/o TD Bank, 2653 South 5th St., Philadelphia, PA 19148. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs  

Goodnite Goodluck Takes Batavia Downs Open Pace Again BATAVIA, N.Y. --- For the second consecutive week, Goodnite Goodluck ($6.60) was put in 'long-term parking' but once again he managed to survive the brutally long trip and snag the $8,500 Open Pace at Batavia Downs on a cold Saturday night (Nov. 23) in 1:58.1 over a good track. It was the second straight victory in the Open Pace and fourth in a row for the razor-sharp Goodluck Goodluck. He now has 10 wins on the season and $69,010 in the bank. Most Happy Rider (Kevin Cummings) handed out the parking tickets as Goodnite Goodluck (Ron Beback Jr.) never able to get to the rail. The tandem set fractions of 27.3, 57.3 and 1:27.2. Everyone in the field of seven had a shot as they turned for home but Goodnite Goodluck showed plenty of pace and heart, prevailing over Unicorn Hanover (Greg Merton) by a quarter length while Most Happy Rider ran a game third. Goodnite Goodluck (Bettor's Delight-Priority Overnight) is a 7-year-old horse owned by Mark Jakubik and trained by JD Perrin. He now has earned $291,397 in his career. Drivers Jim McNeight, Ken Holliday, Greg Merton and Ron Beback Jr. all recorded doubles on Saturday night. The racing action resumes on Wednesday night with 12 races on tap. The feature will be the opener on the card where a field of seven will go to the post in the $8,500 Fillies and Mares Open Pace. Red Star Fiona seeks her 14th win of the season and will start from the six hole with Ray Fisher Jr. in the sulky. There are just six live racing programs left on the 2013 schedule with the season finale on Saturday, December 7. For upcoming promotions, news, race replays and statistics, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs  

Lutetium Rolls To Easy Score In Batavia Downs Open Trot BATAVIA, N.Y. --- The cold, rainy weather at Batavia Downs Friday night (Nov. 22) didn't dampen the spirits of Lutetium ($5.80) as he made it two straight victories in the $8,500 Open Trot with a 1:59.1 time over a sloppy track. Last week, Lutetium scored a front-running two-length victory but Friday he had the field waving the white flag at the top of the stretch, drawing away to a seven-length win. Lutetium went gate-to-wire and the race was never in doubt, especially after the pocket-sitter R A's Shakenbake broke stride midway around the final turn. The 6-year-old Lutetium (Credit Winner-Luby) was put on the lead from the start by driver Kevin Cummings and registered times of 29.0, 59.0, 1:28.3 in posting his 10th win of the season. Haste (Jim McNeight) finished a distant second and Heartsaregonnaroll (Shawn McDonough) picked up the show spot. Owned by Colleen Girdlestone and trained by Mark Laidlaw, Lutetium pushed his seasonal bankroll to $51,759 and $179,331 lifetime. Kevin Cummings continued his hot hand on Friday night driving home three more winners while John Cummings Jr. and Ray Fisher Jr. had doubles. A 12-race program is scheduled for Saturday night with post time at 6:30 p.m. The $8,500 Open Pace is the feature and is set to go as the seventh race. Unicorn Hanover is the 5-2 morning line choice and will score from the five post with Greg Merton in the sulky. There are just seven days of racing left on the 2013 Batavia Downs' season. For more information including schedule, upcoming promotions, race replays and news, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs  

BATAVIA, N.Y. --- Red Star Fiona was the 'shining star' once again Wednesday night (Nov. 20) as she won her second consecutive $8,500 Fillies and Mares Open Pace at Batavia Downs, easily topping V'La Faire by 2-1/2 lengths.   Leaving from post two, Red Star Fiona (Ray Fisher Jr.) had no trouble in reaching the top as Missmaximus (Ron Beback Jr.), scoring from the rail, missed the starting gate. That left Red Star Fiona on an uncontested lead and the 6-year-old mare never looked back.   She posted fractions of 29.0, 58.1, 1:26.2 in registering a winning time of 1:55.2 over the fast track on the crisp fall night. Last week, the JD Perrin-trained Red Star Fiona went gate-to-wire in 1:57.2.  V'La Faire (Shawn McDonough) and Hugs Again (Drew Monti) never threatened in the lane and finished second and third respectively.   It was the 13th victory in 38 appearances this season for Red Star Fiona (Island Fantasy-Red Star Tipper). She has now earned $38,684 for owner Justin Anderson in 2013.   Ronnie Wrenn Jr. led all reinsman with a driving triple while Ron Beback Jr., Ray Fisher Jr. and Jim McNeight all had doubles.   The harness racing action resumes on Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. with a 12-race program scheduled. The seventh race is the featured $8,500 Open Trot where Lutetium is the 3-1 morning line choice with Kevin Cummings in the bike. There are only 8 more racing nights left in the 2013 season.   For news, upcoming promotions, statistics, race replays and more, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing.   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs    

BATAVIA, N.Y. --- Friday night (Nov. 15) turned out to be quite a night for both Lutetium and Kevin Cummings. They teamed up to post the upset in the featured $8,500 Open trot at Batavia Downs. Lutetium has been doing the dirty work for nearly two months, setting the pace, but not reaping any of the rewards, tonight it was a different story. Driver Kevin Cummings stuck to the usual game plan, sending Lutetium to the top and this time it paid off in a wire-to-wire victory. Lutetium ($12.60) posted fractions of 28.4, 58.4, 1:27.4 in scoring the 1:57.4 win over Mystical Escapade (Greg Merton) and third place finisher Haste (Jim McNeight). Mystical Escapade was in perfect striking position in the stretch but the long first over trip proved too much as Lutetium easily prevailed by 1-1/2 lengths. It was the ninth victory of the season for Lutetium (Credit Winner-Luby) who is owned by Colleen Girdlestone and trained by Mark Laidlaw. It moved the 6-year-old gelding's seasonal bankroll to $47,509 and $175,181 lifetime. In addition to winning the Open trot, Cummings made five other Winner Circle visits. Jim McNeight scored a double. The racing resumes on Saturday evening with a 12-race card scheduled with a 6:30 p.m. post. The feature is the eighth race as a full field will go in the $8,000 Open I-II Pace. Unicorn Hanover is the 5-2 morning line choice and will score from the five hole with Greg Merton in the sulky. For upcoming promotions, schedule, latest news and race replays, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs

BATAVIA, N.Y. --- Red Star Fiona's debut may have been delayed a week, but when she did hit the Batavia Downs' half-mile oval on Wednesday evening (Nov. 13), she made it worth the wait. A 6-year-old mare, Red Star Fiona ($8.90) went wire-to-wire in first Western New York appearance and posted a 1:57.2 time in taking the featured $8,500 Fillies and Mares Open Pace by three quarters of a length over Artsy Princess. V'La Faire (Ron Beback Jr.) showed late pace and finished third. Red Star Fiona arrived from the Maywood and Balmoral Park circuit in Chicago but was scratched out of last week's Batavia Downs' event and the break paid off. Driven by Ray Fisher Jr., Red Star Fiona set the fractions of 29.2, 59.4 and 1:28 over the fast track in posting her 12th win of the season. Artsy Princess (Kevin Cummings) tried to rally in the stretch but could reel in the winner. Owned by Justin Anfinson and trained by JD Perrin, Red Star Fiona (Island Fantasy-Red Star Tipper) has now earned $34,434 on the season and $69,824 lifetime. Ronnie Wrenn Jr.,North America's leading dash driver, notched a four-bagger while Jim McNeight, Ray Fisher Jr. and Dave McNeight III all had doubles. The racing continues on Friday night with a 12-race program scheduled with a 6:30 p.m. post. The feature event will be the $8,500 Open Trot where the mare Mystical Escapade is the 9-5 morning line with Greg Merton in the sulky. The 2013 season concludes on December 7. For the latest news, upcoming promotions, race replays and statistics, go to http://bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing. by Brian J. Mazurek, for Batavia Downs  

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