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YONKERS, NY, Monday, July 28, 2014 - After a couple of days worth of hiatus, New York Sire Stakes returned downstate Monday night, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $226,200 Art Watson Pace for 3-year-old fillies. The first of three, $75,400 divisions took on a different look right before post time when odds-on choice Major Dancer (Brian Sears) was scratched-lame. That shifted the role of (4-5) favoritism to Blush Hanover (Jim Morrill Jr.). "Blush" led through fractions of :26.4, 56.3 and 1:25.1. However, with a length-and-a-quarter lead entering the lane, she could not lose a pesky Delightful Dragon (Dave Miller).   That one, the Three Diamonds winner from a season ago, seated early from outside post position No. 7. Delightful Dragon engaged the leader in earnest and out of the final turn before picking her off by three-quarters of a length in 1:54.1. A season-debuting Ali Blue (Yannick Gingras) was third. For fourth choice Delightful Dragon, a homebred daughter of Bettor's Delight owned by Adam Victor and Son Stable and trained by Noel Daley, she returned $22.40 for her fist win in four seasonal starts. The exacta paid $50.50, with the triple returning $260. "She's had her issues her issues this season, but she handled the track very well," Miller said. "Obviously, the race changed when the favorite scratched, but my filly earned it. She took a lot of air and was able to go by." The second NYSS event was a down-the-roader for It Was Fascination (Scott Zeron, $). Leaving from post No. 2 after an inside scratch, she held sway after intervals of :28.1, :57, 1:25.3 and 1:54.2. Spreester (Morrill Jr.), the 1-2 fave, tested the winner from the pocket, but missed a neck, with JK Molly (George Brennan) third. For second choice "Fascination," an American Ideal lass co-owned (as Alagna Racing) by (trainer) Tony Algana, (co-breeder) Riverview Racing and Bay's Stable, it was her third win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $7.10, with the triple returning $27.80. "I would have perfectly content sitting behind Jimmy (Morrill Jr. driving Spreester), but she left the gate on her toes, so I just drove on, " Zeron said. "I've driven her a few times now, and the best thing about her is she's handy. She's comfortable any way you want to race her." Monday night's final statebred event saw a pocketed Medusa (Sears, $5.20) edge away as the 8-5 favorite. In play from post No. 6, Medusa sat behind pole proposition Carlota Blue Chip (Brennan) as that one set sail through subsections of :28.2, :57.2 and 1:26.1. "Carlota" opened a length-and-a-quarter lead into the lane, but needed more. Medusa angled out and went by, defeating a three hole-sitting Sky Artist (Eric Carlson) by a length-and-a-quarter. Carlota Blue Chip held third. For Medusa Blue Chip, a Bettor's Delight miss owned by W J Donovan and trained by Paul Kelley, she's now 7-for-11 this season (unraced at 2). The exacta paid $90.50, the triple returned $285.50 and the supefecta (Just Add Vodka [Morrill Jr.]) paid $974. "She showed she can leave the gate, and I was able to get her out of there," Sears said. "Out of the last turn, I could see George (Brennan, driving Carlota Blue Chip) having to get after his filly, so I figured it was time to go. " New York Sire Stakes continue Tuesday night, $201,600 Mike Cohen Trot (2-year-old fillies). Thursday night, it's the $200,900 New York Sire Stakes Jim Meagher Pace (2-year-old colts/geldings). The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

Batavia, NY - Three divisions of the New York Sire Stake for 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings highlighted the Sunday afternoon card and it didn't take long for the youngsters to impress the crowd. Prohibitive post time favorite All Bets Off put on a clinic in winning the first division of the $116,900 sophomore stake and rewrote the record book in the process. Leaving from post five, All Bets Off went right to the front and was never headed. In fact, for most of the mile no one could keep up with him. Driver Matt Kakaley set fractions of :27.3, :56.2 and 1:24.1 as he sped for the last turn. At that point All Bets Off found a new gear and pulled away to an unprompted eight-length victory in 1:51.2, which set a new track record for a 3-year-old colt and was only one-fifth shy of tying the all-age track record of 1:51.1 set by Aracache Hanover in 2011. All Bets Off, who returned $2.60 for the win, is owned by Burke Racing Stable, Frank Baldachino, the Panhellenic Stable and Rosemary Shelswell and is trained by Ron Burke. The win was his sixth of the year and raised his lifetime earnings to $497,842. The second division looked like it might break the record just set. After settling in second off the gate, 3-5 favorite Winds Of Change (Jim Morrill Jr.) bolted from the hole and shot to the top with a 6 length advantage at the quarter in :26.4. He was in command at the half in 54.1 with a gapped 10 length lead but the pack started reeling him in at the three-quarters. After the leader hit that post in 1:22.4, Forty Five Red (Matt Kakaley) who had come first-over caught the leader by the top of the turn, but Moliere Hanover (Jason Bartlett) was right on his back and it became a two horse race all the way down the stretch. After a hard fought duel, Moliere Hanover won a neck decision over Forty Five Red in 1:53.3 The time was a new lifetime mark for Moliere Hanover who was overlooked by the betting public and returned $24.20. Moliere Hanover is owned by Baymond Racing LLC and is trained by P.J. Fraley. The final split was won by Big Boy Dreams (Jason Bartlett) who presented his best outing of the year. Leaving from post five, Big Boy Dreams immediately took the lead and was never headed. After getting to the three-quarters in 1:25, Bartlett stretched out in the bike and simply urged the colt along with a few taps down the lane where the others attempt to catch him became futile. The mile time of 1:52.4 was a seasonal mark for Big Boy Dreams who returned $3.60 as the favorite. Big Boy Dreams is owned by Dominick Rosato and is trained by Tracy Brainard. There were also two divisions of the $12,600 Excelsior A series on the undercard. The first was won by Murder He Wrote, driven by Jim Morrill Jr. in a time of 1:55.2 for owner Camelot Stable and trainer Linda Toscano. Murder He wrote returned $3.80. The second division went to Archetto Hanover who was driven by Brent Holland in 1:54.2 for owner Paymaq Racing, Greg Gillis and Louis Willinger. Erv Miller trains Archetto Hanover who paid $7.60. Driver Jim Morrill Jr. continued his driving domination as he registered five wins and two seconds on the 12 race card. Morrill is by far the top driver in the New York Sire Stake series and on the year as a whole, sports a gaudy .406 UDR. Racing resumes Wednesday evening (7-30) at Batavia Downs with a 6:35 post time. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia downs

Batavia, NY - The first of eight visits by the lucrative New York Sire Stakes takes place Sunday afternoon at Batavia Downs and for the local fans it's a chance to see some of the biggest names in harness racing. The 3-year-old colt and gelding pacers will be on hand and that means some very exciting action. There will be three legs of the NYSS and two of the Excelsior series and the entrants will be competing for combined purses in excess of $140,000. The first division goes for $39,200 and looks to be the main event as it is loaded with talent and speed. Perennial training leader Ron Burke will start 3-5 morning line favorite All Bets Off, who ships in with some impressive credentials. He won the $300,000 Art Rooney pace at Yonkers Raceway in May and after winning his elimination heat in 1:48.3, finished third in the $500,000 Hempt final at Pocono Downs behind McWicked last month. In that race, McWicked set a new world record for 3-year-old colts on a five-eighths mile track (1:47.3). This will be the third start in the NYSS for All Bets Off this year who won at Vernon Downs in 1:50.2 and just ten days ago finished second at Yonkers in 1:52.4 to Capital Account, who looks to be his toughest competition in today's race. He has earnings of $291,575 already this year. All Bets Off, who starts from post five and will be driven by Matt Kakaley, is part of an entry that includes stablemate Keystone Honor. Capital Account has competed in some high-profile stakes already but without positive results. He drew post eight in both the $69,000 Somebeachsomewhere and $45,500 North America Cup elimination at Mohawk and finished well beaten in both. But even though he does not sport the gaudy numbers of the morning line favorite, he certainly has beaten him. In his last start at Yonkers in NYSS action, Capital Account was pulled third over up the backside before tipping four-deep around the leader All Bets Off at the top of the stretch. He then outpaced the 1-5 favorite to the wire to win by a half-length. The 16-1 shot was overlooked last week but certainly won't be in here. Capital Account is trained by Hall of Famer Jimmy Takter and will start from post three for leading NYSS driver Jim Morrill Jr. The second $39,200 division is headed by Canadian conditioner Cassie Coleman's Twin B Tenacious. After getting 2014 off to an inauspicious start, Twin B Tenacious has now strung together four straight wins (the last a NYSS event at Yonkers) and registered a 1:50.3 lifetime mark at the Meadowlands in the process. Steve Smith, who has been at the helm for all four victories, will once again be in the bike and start from post four. Forty Five Red, who is another entry from the powerful Burke stable, comes in off two consecutive wins at Yonkers Raceway which includes his seasonal mark of 1:52.3 in his last outing. Although he hasn't missed a check all year, his most recent outings have probably been his best to date and indicate he will be a legitimate threat to the favorite. The third division is worth $38,500 and looks to be a wide-open affair. Stay Up Late has been made the morning line favorite but has yet to win in stake action at three. He has gone off the favorite in his last three starts but his sole victory this year came in an overnight event at Yonkers Raceway on July 8 in 1:53.3. He gets Jim Morrill Jr. up for the first time this year and starts from post four Neat draws the rail for trainer Erv Miller and is coming in off three very impressive starts. After just getting beat in 1:53.4 in a NYSS race at Buffalo on June 27, Neat finished second in an overnight at Pocono Downs in 1:50.1 over a sloppy track the following week. He was then back in Sire Stake action at Yonkers his last start where he got away sixth and chased a :56 flat last half parked out to finish third in 1:52.3. Neat is rated at 5-2 for driver Brent Holland. 3-1 third choice Sir Sam's Z Tam has the fastest seasonal mark and the most money earned of any other horse in this race, but also has the only NYSS victory this year. After hitting the board four consecutive times, he found himself parked out in a fast last half at Yonkers before finishing fifth. Sam's Z Tam will start from post three for trainer/driver the Pat Lachance. The undercard features two divisions of the Excelsior series and they are slated to go as race seven and ten. The first split goes for $12,600 and has two horses that have dominated the class; Cabbie's Delight and Murder He Wrote. 8-5 favorite Cabbie's Delight has not been worse than second in six Excelsior starts. In fact he is the point's leader to date in the series. He won four straight out of the gate before finishing two close seconds in his most recent starts. Trainer Sam Serianni has Jason Bartlett in the bike this week as he looks to get back in the winner's circle. 9-5 co-favorite Murder He Wrote has won his last two starts, including a NYSS event at Buffalo Raceway where he blew up the tote board at 45-1. The roan gelding drew immediate respect after that when he went off the prohibitive favorite the following week at Yonkers where he won wire to wire in 1:54.1. Jim Morrill Jr. will drive Murder He Wrote and starts from post five for conditioner Linda Toscano. The final $12,600 Excelsior contest is headlined by 2-1 choice Believeinthespirit. After having negligible success in four straight NYSS races, trainer Ed Lohmeyer reclassified his charge to the Excelsior and the change has proven fruitful. Believeinthespirit has won his last two starts in convincing fashion and looks to continue the streak from post two. 5-2 second choice Archetto Hanover is the second highest point getter in the Excelsior series behind Cabbie's Delight and has three wins and two seconds to show for his efforts. Trainer Erv Miller has Brent Holland up for this trip and will depart from post five. Post time for the first race is 1:15. For more racing information or to watch race replays as soon as they are declared official, logon to www.bataviadonwsgaming.com. Or if you would like to bet online and watch live streaming coverage of the races as they occur, logon to www.bataviabets.com and open an account. by Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, July 24, 2014-Yonkers Raceway Thursday night hosted the $217,000 New York Sire Stakes $217,000 Michael Sorentino Trot for 3-year-old colts and geldings. A total of 11 entered a pair of six-figure divisions. The first ($107,500) grouping saw last season's frosh statebred champion Flyhawk El Durado (Mark MacDonald, $6.30) finish what he started (:28.1, :57.4, 1:26.3, 1:55.3). What started out of as a quintet quickly become a foursome when 7-5 favorite Expressive Action (Mike Simons) broke leaving in the first turn. Later on, a three-hole-sitting Lukas Hall (Jason Bartlett) also danced. "El Durado," meanwhile, could not shake a pesky Zoey De Vie (Jim Morrill Jr.), though he did eventually whip that one by a length-and-a-half. Daley Lovin (Dan Daley) was third. For third choice Flyhawk El Durado, a son of Conway Hall trained by Mark Ford for owner Martin Scharf, it was his third win in nine seasonal starts. The exacta paid $15, and there was no triple wagering. "He can leave the gate and just about always trots four turns," MacDonald said. "Last week (NYSS at Monticello), he did make a break but I think it was some sort of an equipment malfunction. "Tonight, he was on his game. Obviously, the other horse (Expressive Action) was one of the ones to beat, and when he made a break, it made my job easier...but (Flyhawk El Durado) went a real good mile and beat another good horse (Zoey De Vie)." The second ($109,500) sire stakes event saw odds-on choice Gural Hanover (Morrill Jr., $2.30) put up cheapy intervals of :28.1, :58.1, 1:27.3 and 1:56.1 en route to a length-and-a-quarter victory. Leaving outside his five foes, he worked around second choice Cash Me Out (Mickey McGivern), then watched as that one tested him early from the pocket. Royal Max (Bartlett) was third. For Gural Hanover, a Crazed gelding co-owner (as Burke Racing) by (trainer) Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi and Little E and Panhellenic Stables, it was his fifth win (fourth consecutive) in seven '14 tries. The exacta paid $3.30, with the triple (three wagering favorites in order) returning $11.20. "He's just two fingers (to drive). You can do anything you want," Morrill-his escort over the past four races-said. New York Sire Stakes continue Friday night, with the $197,500 Milt Taylor Trot for 2-year-old colts/geldings. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

Market Rally broke the track record for three year old trotting fillies on Wednesday night at Saratoga Casino and Raceway. Having emerged as the top sophomore trotter amongst NY fillies in the past month, Market Rally (Cash Hall) came into Wednesday's $91,500 Sire Stake on a three race win streak since the addition of lasix. The Ron Burke-trained filly made an early move to the lead for driver Jim Morrill Jr and the race's 1-9 betting favorite would never look back. Market Rally drew away from her competition to win in 1:55.4 over a track labeled 'good'. The win time set a new track record for three year old fillies breaking the mark set by Munis Blue Chip (Ray Schnittker) in August of 2012. The other $91,550 Sire Stakes on the card was won by Driving Miss Crazy and trainer-driver Gates Brunet. Driving Miss Crazy (Crazed) went wire-to-wire, hanging on to prevail in 1:57.2 at odds of 9-2. New York Sire Stakes action will return to Saratoga next Wednesday night when two year old filly pacers square off at the Spa. Live racing continues on Thursday night at Saratoga with a first post time set for 7:05pm. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- "I think we had a good meet with some excellent racing," Buffalo Raceway's Chief Operating Officer Jim Mango said as he reflected back on the now completed 2014 season.   "I seen a lot of positives that have occurred here and I am encouraged about the 2015 season," Mango added.   The first eight weeks of the season, which started on January 8, were hampered by an unusually harsh winter locally and throughout the Northeast which forced postponements of seven cards. "Once the winter weather cleared and spring came, we did alright," Mango said.   Jon Cramer, Buffalo Raceway's Director of Operations said, "I think we've held our own compared to others. We've had another nice increase in our simulcast handle again. Our nightly pools were up 10 percent this year."   On the track, Kevin Cummings took his first driving title at Buffalo Raceway since 2008 with 171 victories, easily beating out Ron Beback Jr. who had 117.   Cummings finished with a UDR of .341 and earnings of $838,902. Cummings also won the crown in 2004, 2005 and 2008.   Beback Jr. finished with a UDR of .267 and $602,109 in purse earnings while Jack Flanigen rounded out the top three with 97 wins, a .277 UDR and $522,675 in winnings.   The all-time track record of 214 wins in a season set by Jim Morrill Jr. in 2006 will remain for another year.   A total of 59 different drivers made a trip to the winner's circle.   JD Perrin continues to be a model of consistency with his second straight training title. Perrin, who won in 2013 with 78 victories, put up 76 wins this year with a .372 UTR and $346,637 in purse earnings.   Ryan Swift took second place with 44 wins, having a UTR of .282 and bankrolled $208,673. John Mungillo completed the top three with 43 wins and $238,074 in purse earnings.   The track record for wins in a season by a trainer is still Sherri Holliday who conditioned 122 in 2011.   A total of 100 different trainers had at least two victories during the campaign.   The horses were definitely in high gear over th half-mile track at the Fairgrounds in Hamburg. There were a total of seven track records either broken or tied during the season.   Leading the record breakers were 3-year-old trotting colt Gural Hanover. He set his division mark and also took down the Buffalo Raceway all-aged trotting record when he covered the mile in 1:56.1 in the New York Sires Stakes on June 29th.   The 2-year-old colt trotting mark was re-established by Royal Deceptor who went 1:59.3 while 3-year-old filly trotter Glowngold got her name with the record book with a 1:59.0 time.   The all-aged filly and mare pacing record were set twice as Majic Laughter and Cased Solved each registered a 1:54.2 clocking. Sweetnsinful also produced a new standard in her division as the 3-year-old filly pacer won in a sizzling 1:54.1.   Ophiuchus N led the way in victories on the season with 12 during the meet and had the second most earnings with $47,026. Twilight Jack and Western each were victorious nine times on the pacing side.   The top trotters were Lutetium and Kely Jo Wiz as each put up eight wins.   But it was Lutetium who was nothing less than brilliant in winning the Open Trots. He was able to overcome the assigned outside posts time after time, going gate-to-wire to record the victories.   The top money earner among the local horses was Ugly Betty who took in $49,183 thanks to seven wins in 22 starts, Most of her income came in the Fillies and Mares Open Pace.   Buffalo Raceway's post time favorites scored a 43.62 rate.   Looking ahead to 2015, Mango said, "We'll be racing 92 days next season and we'll go three times week from January through May. We'll add the fourth racing day in June and July. The purse structure isn't set yet but I can tell you for sure it won't go down from the 2014 levels."   The main off-season upgrade will be the track itself. "Starting on October 20th, we will be having a major track renovation," Mango disclosed. "In cooperation with the Western New York Harness Horsemen's Association, we will be re-banking the turns, fix drainage issues, especially by the finish line, and putting down 5,000 tons of material. We are looking forward to that work being done. It's a major expense. Hopefully once this is done, it will take some of the pressure off that first turn."   Mango went on to say, "Tom Agosti will be back again in 2015 as Race Secretary. He did a great job in the month he was on the job and I look forward for him to be here the entire year and really put his mark on the race office."   The Niatross and Spring Break Claiming Series look to be back on the agenda for 2015. Mango stated, "The horsemen love it." Asked if the Claiming Series might expand to trotters, Mango quickly added, "That's up to Tommy and the racing office."   Cramer said of 2015 outlook, "We'll be sitting down and looking at promotions, what worked and didn't work. We will have the $5,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 coming back along with 'Back To The Track' and Father's Day events for sure."   Mango said in closing, "We are looking forward to 2015. We will be continuing to make some general improvements, nothing major besides the track. But we do continue to get a tremendous response from a lot of people, especially from the Sire Stakes people who've come in, how pleased they are with the backstretch and barn areas. They rave about it."   And if Mother Nature can cooperate just a little more in the early part of the next season, sunny days could be ahead for Buffalo Raceway as they embark on another year in 2015.   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway      

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- It was closing day at Buffalo Raceway Sunday afternoon (July 20) and the 2-year-old filly trotters in the New York Sire Stakes tried but couldn't beat their divisional track record of 2:00.2 held by Munis Blue Chip from 2009.   So while the standard still stands tall, there were some good efforts with the fastest times of the four $27,251 divisions going to Betcha and Barn Doll who covered the mile over the fast track in 2:01.2. The other winners were Cherry Crown Jewel (2:02.2) and Miss B'Ville J (2:02.0).   In the opening division, Cherry Crown Jewel inherited the lead after Counselor AS (Jeff Gregory) broke stride around the second turn and was never threatened the rest of the way.   "I really didn't want Jeff's horse (Counselor AS) to get the lead but when they broke, we got back on top and it was nice and easy then," winning driver/trainer Dan Daley said. "She's a nice filly and could do well in the Sire Stakes."   Cherry Crown Jewel ($11.40) was easily able to hold off the mild rally mounted by second place finisher Dancewithme Chuck (Charlie Norris), who finished 1-1/2 lengths back, while Stories To Tell (Chris Lems) trotted into third.   The winning time was 2:02.2 and it was the first win in three starts for Cherry Crown Jewel (RC Royalty-Nowerland Kristen).   Daley made it two straight in the Sire Stakes when he guided Betcha ($4.40) to an convincing 3/4 length triumph over Stirling Debutant (Rick Zeron) in 2:01.2 in the second leg. It was the second straight Sire Stakes win for Betcha.   It was a perfectly rated journey for Betcha (Cash Hall-Sienna) as she followed the live cover of Stirling Debutant and exploded three-wide through the stretch to score the victory by 3/4 expanding lengths in 2:01.2.   Daley said of Betcha, "We didn't think she'd be anything special but she keeps chugging along and wants to be a race horse."   Barn Doll (Gregory) was much the best in the third division as smartly trotted past Kaliska (Ray Schnittker) under little urging and posted the two length decision in 2:01.2. Zanna Blu (Gates Brunet) rolled into the show position.   "She's a very well-mannered filly," Gregory said of Barn Doll. "She's done everything they've asked of her. They (owners Purple Haze Stables and Steven and Nancy Pratt) are going to make a lot of money with her."   It was the third victory in four career starts for Barn Doll (Conway Hall-Headintheclouds) and increased her seasonal earnings to $36,357.   The final division saw Miss B'Ville J (Jim Morrill Jr.) use the 'lightning lane' and beat the front-stepping Northern Obession (Schnittker) by a neck in 2:02.   Northern Obession set the tempo with times of 30.3, 1:01.4 and 1:32.2 but had Miss B'Ville J ($4.70) breathing down her neck the entire mile. In the lane, Morrill Jr. dropped Miss B'Ville inside and she responded to post the neck victory.   Owned by KJ Stables and trained by Tracy Brainard, it was the first trip to the winner's circle in three tries for Miss B'Ville J (RC Royalty-South Jersey Angel).   In the $12,600 Excelsior Class A races, Define Royalty (Chris Lems) took the first division in 2:04 and returned $4.20. Barn Girl (Greogry) won the second leg in 2:02.1 and paid $4.60 while in the last leg, The Cuse pulled the surprise ($13.20) as John Stark Jr. sent the winner wire-to-wire in 2:03.2.   The $6,700 Excelsior B series race was won by Untangled Cash (Gregory) and took the victory in 2:05.1 and paid $4.10.   The live racing schedule is now completed for the 2014 season. Simulcasting will continue throughout the remainder of the year at Buffalo Raceway with live racing expected resume in January of 2015.   For simulcast schedule, race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

Three-year-old pacing fillies were featured on Saturday night at Saratoga Casino and Raceway as part of the New York Sire Stakes. Locally-based Spreester (American Ideal) scored a victory in her division of the $59,100 Sire Stakes behind a late surge with driver Jim Morrill Jr in the sulky. Spreester continued her terrific stakes season behind the 1:53.2 seasonal best victory on Saturday night. The fastest winner of the three "big time" Sire Stakes races was Major Dancer (Art Major). Making her NY debut, the Casie Coleman-trained pacer came charging hard late before drawing away to win in 1:53.1 with Hall of Famer Wally Hennessey in the sulky. The upset of the three stakes races came when Ken Doll J (Bettor's Delight) survived a first over journey to prevail in 1:55.2 with Jimmy Whittemore in the bike. Ken Doll J was dismissed at odds of 9-1 for her first win of 2014. Sire Stakes action returns to the Spa on Wednesday evening when three year old trotting fillies take center stage. Live racing resumes on Tuesday night at Saratoga with first post time set for 7:05pm. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- The 2014 Buffalo Raceway live racing season comes to an end on Sunday afternoon but the track will close with a bang as the New York State Sire Stakes for 2-year-old trotting fillies highlight the final card of the year.   There will be four $27,251 divisions of the Sire Stakes along a trio of $12,600 Excelsior A Series races and a $6,700 Excelsior B race in the 11-race program that is set for 1:05 p.m.   And while there be some talented filly trotters taking to the track, it's like a 'who's who' that will be driving them. Former Western New York regulars Jeff Gregory, Ray Schnittker, Jim Morrill Jr., John Stark Jr., Phil Fluet, Sam Schillaci and John Cummings Jr. all will be returning to Western New York for day. They'll be joined by others including Dan Daley, Chuck Connors Jr., Charlie Norris, Chris Lems, Gates Brunet, Jim Meittinis, Rick Zeron, Robert Shepherd, Jim Marohn Jr. and Tyler Raymer.   The Sire Stakes will be contested in the first, third, sixth and seventh races.   The first leg features Counsellor AS (Gregory) who has a 1-1/2 length win in the Excelsior A Series at Vernon Downs on June 26 in 2:00.1. Counsellor As (Conway Hall-Cordele AS) broke stride in her last appearance at Tioga Downs on July 11. She'll look to rebound starting from the three post as the 3-1 morning line choice.   Her main threat should come from 4-1 second choice Meshugana Miss (Crazed-Daring Marisa) who start from the four post. She has a pair of second place finishes in both of her pari-mutuel starts and will be handled by Connor Jr.   The second division has Betcha (Betcha-Ruccoucou) as the 3-1 choice with Daley in the bike. Betcha cruised to an easy two length decision in the $27,250 Sire Stakes at Tioga Downs in 1:59.4 on July 11. She may play 'catch-me-if-you can' from the four spot.   The toughest leg could be the third which will go as the sixth race. It finds My Twisted Sister (Lucky Chucky-Pretzel Hanover) and Barn Doll (Conway Hall-Headintheclouds) ready to battle it out.   My Twisted Sister (Morrill Jr.) showed plenty of heart in posting a neck victory in the $27,750 Sire Stakes at Tioga Downs in 2:00 on July 11. She'll get the inside post and should get a perfect trip.   Barn Doll drew a tough post, the seventh spot, but can overcome it after posting a pair of big victories of more than three lengths in her last two starts, including 1:59.1 decision at Tioga on July 11 in the Sire Stakes. Barn Doll gets Jeff Gregory as her pilot.   The final division has Spell That (Conway Hall-Mouche Hanover) the 3-1 early choice with Sam Schillaci in the sulky. She was last seen on June 26 at Vernon Downs where she suffered a narrow neck defeat in the Sire Stakes. She'll start out of the six post.   The main threat could come from Northern Obsession (Conway Hall-Northernpossession). This 2-year-old has a pair of competitive third place finishes in two Sire Stakes starts and gets trainer-driver Ray Schnittker on the reins. They'll score from the three post.   For more information including simulcast schedule, race replays, results and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway      

YONKERS, NY, Monday, July 14, 2014-Driver Jim Morrill Jr., Scotchgarded colors and all, won both halves of Yonkers Raceway's $225,000 New York Sire Stakes Mike Cipriani Trot Monday night. Morrill won the first ($111,500) very wet event for 3-year-old fillies with defending statebred champ Market Rally ($2.20). The odds-on favorite had to work first-up to dispose of pace-setting Lady with Credit (Trond Smedshammer) before opening up down the backside. Market Rally opened five lengths into the lane before whipping Glowngold (Brian Sears) by 2½ lengths in 1:59.4. Third went to 59-1 outsider Cutup Hanover (Jeff Gregory). Market Rally, a daughter of Cash Hall, is 3-for-5 this season (3-for-3 since adding Lasix) for co-owners (trainer) Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi and Panhellenic Stable. The exacta (two wagering favorites) paid $6, with the triple returning $84. Morrill and 17-1 L Dee's Scripture ($37.20) avoided all the happenstance in the equally-moist second ($113,500) event. The pair sat pocketed to Driving Miss Crazy (Gates Brunet) in what turned out to be a two-speed, outside-post number. L Dee's Scripture eased past "Miss Crazy," winning by three-quarters of a length in 1:59.1. Maud Blue Chip (Sears) was third, back another two lengths. Four of the five remaining lasses-including 9-10 fave Avalicious (Yannick Gingras)-either broke or caused a rival to do the same. Fifth choice L Dee's Scripture, a Credit Winner lass co-owned by Lawrence Dumain & Carlo Lattinelli and trained by Julie Miller, is off the '14 schneid (1-for-5). The exacta paid $845, with the triple returning $3,885. New York Sire Stakes continue Thursday night, with the $221,000 NYSS Armand Palatucci Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. A trio of groupings-purses of $72,800, $74,100 and $74,100-go as races 1,4 and 9. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, NY, Sunday, July 13, 2014-Statebred as well are open stakes are in Yonkers Raceway's display window the week. Monday night, the $225,000 New York Sire Stakes Mike Cipriani Trot finds a pair of rich divisions ($111,500 and $113,500, respectively) for 3-year-old fillies going as races 5 and 6. The first event sees defending NYSS champ Market Rally (Jim Morrill Jr., post 4) as a very probable short-priced number. The daughter of Cash Hall is 2-for-2 since adding Lasix, sire stakes wins at Buffalo at Vernon. The lass, purchased after her frosh season, is co-owned by (trainer) Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi and Panhellenic Stable. Glownngold (Brian Sears, post 3), unraced at 2, has hit the board in eight of her 12 tries this season. Gammy's Girl (Dave Miller, post 1) is looking to regain her six-figure form of a season ago. The second Cipriani event figures the more competitive, with last-out NYSS winner Avalicious (Yannick Gingras, post 2) and Empire Breeders Classic victress Crediama (Trond Smedshammer) among the leading lasses. Thursday night, the $221,000 NYSS Armand Palatucci Pace brings the 3-year-old colts and geldings back downstate. A trio of groupings-purses of $72,800, $74,100 and $74,100-goes as races 1,4 and 9. The second event is the one above the marquee. It offer the local return of Art Rooney Pace winner All Bets Off (Matt Kakaley, post 5), part of the a Burke co-owned/trained entry. The Bettor's Delight colt is 5-for-7 this season ($273,050). Saturday night, it's the $125,000 final of the Lawrence B. Sheppard Pace for 2-year-old colts and geldings. Leading the octet into are this past weekend's elimination winners In the Arsenal (Eric Goodell, 1:56.2) and Cartoon Daddy (George Brennan, 1:56.1). The winners, trained by Kelvin Harrison and Burke, respectively, are joined by Byby Landon, Mystical Pacer, Rock N' Roll World, Lone Survivor, Perfect Eagle and Parklane Eagle. The open draw for the Sheppard is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Mother Nature definitely was a major factor in Sunday afternoon's New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old filly pacers but the heavy rains didn't stop Our Hot Majorette, Bin N Heaven and Bossers Joy from registering victories over the sloppy track.   Bin N Heaven posted the fastest time of the three $36,566 divisions with a 1:59.4 time. Our Hot Majorette and Bossers Joy each lit up the tote board in the other two legs. Mike Saftic managed to hang on at the wire to score a $23.60 win while Bossers Joy and Brent Holland took the final division and returned $80.00 for the victory.   The heavy rain made the track a sloppy mess but Bin N Heaven, entering her race a perfect 2-for-2 in qualifiers including 1:56.3 at Mohawk, found the wet going to her liking. Taking over the lead just before the three-quarter marker, Bin N Heaven (Rock N Roll Heaven-Binions) paced away from the field and beat Mosquito Blue Chip (Jim Morrill Jr.) by 2-1/4 lengths while Fan Mail (Mark MacDonald) finished in third.   "There we no problems at all," McNail said of Bin N Heaven's trip. "She was push button. She went when we needed to go. Those were great fractions considering the weather."   Owned by Frank Bellino and trained by Tony O-Sullivan, it was the first pari-mutuel win in Bin N Heaven's first start.   Our Hot Majorette (Art Major-She's So Hot) showed plenty of heart in the lane and took the opening leg with a head victory over Amertime (MacDonald) in what can only be described as a monsoon rainstorm. Ameritime cut the mile with 31., 1:03 and 1:34.3 but stop Our Hot Majorette in a ding-dong battle down the lane. The heavily-favored Sheeztoughenough (Morrill Jr.) took the show position.   "Wow," was the first comment of driver Mike Saftic when he returned to the winner's circle. "That was a great trip for her in here. I really couldn't see too much though. That was sure an adventurous trip."   Our Hot Majorette is owned Miller Farms and is trained by Eric Adams.   Bossers Joy (Art Major-Esther's Joy) enjoyed the frolic in the wet going and rallied for an impressive head victory over Crucial Moment (Jimmy Whittemore) in the final division. Mydelight Bluechip (Chris Lems) rounded out the top three.   Hitting the half-mile 11-1/4 lengths behind the leaders, Bossers Joy used a slow and steady journey on the outside to snatch the win, getting up in the shadow of the wire for the upset victory.   "She really whipped around the track," Holland said of the last half mile by Bossers Joy. "There were no issues. She raced well." Holland, who tripled on the card, added with a laugh, "We finally got the lead when we wanted it...at the wire."   Bossers Joy is owned by Francis Azur and is conditioned by Kevin McDermott.   In the $12,700 Excelsior A Series, Holland took two divisions with by steering Bugatti Beauty ($24.00) to a 2:03.2 decision and Jag Out ($3.00) to a 2:02.3 win. Hey Kobe ($6.50) won the other leg for driver John Plutino in 2:02.3.   The Excelsior B Series, worth $6,600, went to Delightful Plan ($4.80) with Jeff Gregory in the sulky. They covered the mile in 2:05.2.   The final week of racing for the 2014 season begins on Wednesday night with a 10-race card program set for 5 p.m.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, results and upcoming promotions, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway      

The state's top two year old pacing colts and geldings were in town on Saturday night on Back to the Track night at Saratoga Casino and Raceway. The fifth annual Back to the Track night brought fans out in full force to enjoy a race card that featured NY Sire Stakes action throughout the night. As is usually the case when he comes to town, driver Jim Morrill Jr dominated the action. The 49-year-old reinsman piled up six wins on the card including one that matched the track record for two-year-old pacers. Freedomformysoul (If I Can Dream) scored an impressive victory in 1:53.3 on Saturday to match the mark set by Heston Blue Chip on the Night of Champions in 2011. Freedomformysoul finished second in his lifetime debut last week at the Meadowlands pacing in 1:52.4 and broke his maiden at the Spa in his first try in the New York Sire Stakes. Morrill, who has only driven at Saratoga a couple of times since racing here full time in March, still is among the top ten in the driver standings as he has won at a percentage of over sixty when he has come to town. Other winners in the $32,700 and above Sire Stakes races were K-Rock (Rock N Roll Heaven), Rockntouch (Rock N Roll Heaven), Oneisalonelynumber (Bettor's Delight) and Aimo Hanover (Artiscape). Live racing continues on Sunday afternoon at Saratoga with a matinee beginning at 12:45pm. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoa Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- There's plenty to see and do at Buffalo Raceway Sunday afternoon (July 13) when the popular 'Back To The Track' promotion takes place along with a 13-race program featuring the New York Sire Stakes for the 2-year-old pacing fillies. The action gets underway at 1:05 p.m.   The 'Back To The Track' day, in conjunction with the United States Trotting Association and Buffalo Raceway, features harness racing bingo, free programs, sno-cones, cotton candy, pony rides and t-shirts. It's a great day of activities for those of all ages.   There will be plenty of action on the Hamburg half-mile oval as well with three $36,566 divisions of the New York Sire Stakes, slated as the second, fourth and sixth races, along with three $12,700 legs of the Excelsior Class A series.   The young ladies will be gunning for the divisional track record of 1:56.3 set by Silk Purse (2011) and Summertime Lea (2012). A total of six track marks have been either broken or tied at Buffalo Raceway this season so hang onto your hats.   The first division of the Sire Stakes features Sheeztoughenough (Art Dealer-Sheezadiamondealer) who'll score from the two post with Jim Morrill Jr. Installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite, Sheeztoughenough's last outing was a beauty with a 1:55 win at Mohawk in a $11,280 conditioned pace.   The main threat should come from Ameritime (American Ideal-L'Charm) who enters with two straight victories. She scored in a Excelsior A Class race with a 1:58 mark at Monticello and captured a fillies and mares maiden conditioned race at Tioga in 1:58. Mark MacDonald will get the call on the 7-2 second choice.   The remainder of the field includes My Little Delight (Jeff Gregory), Mo Molly Blue Chip (Kevin Cummings), Our Hot Majorette (Mike Saftic) and Heavens Legacy (Brent Holland).   The inside posts are the place to look in the second division as favorites will start from there. Mosquito Blue Chip gets the two hole for Morrill Jr. and is the 2-1 favorite. She comes to town after finishing a solid second at Monticello on July 4 in a $27,750 Sires Stakes race.   Lurking on the rail is Bin N Heaven (Rock N Roll Heaven-Binions) with Doug McNair in the bike. She was won both her qualifiers including a 1:56.3 at Mohawk Raceway back on June 29 and is the 3-1 second pick.   Others in the division include Amazing Phrasing (Jim Mettinis), Float On By (Saftic), Fan Mail (MacDonald) and Devil Child (Jimmy Whittemore).   The final leg has Neverhaditsogood (Art Major-Indulge Me) who finished second behind Bettor N Bettor in the Sire Stakes at Monticello on July 4. She finished 2-3/4 lengths back. McNair will be at the controls for Neverhaditsogood, who'll score from the four post.   The main threat could come from the rail-sitting Bullville Maggie with MacDonald set to go in the sulky. Bullville Maggie finished third in a $27,250 at Monticello on July 4 and was 6-1/2 lengths. She was straddled with the seven post, however, so the inside draw here could make a huge difference.   Also in the race as Mydelight Bluechip (Chirs Lems), Crucial Moment (Whittemore), Bachata Hanover (Morrill Jr.), Bussers Joy (Holland) and Yes You Can (Saftic).   After Sunday, it will be closing week at Buffalo Raceway with just four cards remaining. The racing schedule shows a 5 p.m. post on Wednesday while Friday and Saturdays will start at 6:40 p.m. Next Sunday is closing day with a 1:05 p.m. matinee slated.   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. --- Royal Deceptor set sail from the rail and kept right on going into the Buffalo Raceway record book Wednesday evening (July 9) with a stunning 1:59.3 time over the fast track to highlight the action in the New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters.   The time absolutely shattered the previous mark of 2:01.2 set by Timothy Patrick in 2012 and tied by The Lindy Treaty in 2013. It was the sixth track record either broken or tied at Buffalo Raceway during the 2014 season.   Others registering wins in the $27,250 divisions of the Sire Stakes were Stoneham, Gabe The Bear Dean and Pier Ho Exotic.   But the star of night was Royal Deceptor (RC Royalty-Art Of Deception), an $11,000 purchase at the Morrisville Sale.   Winning driver Michael McGivern said of the gate-to-wire victory by Royal Deceptor ($7.10), "I was holding my breath going into that first turn because we were going so fast. After that, he really settled down and I never pulled the plugs."   Majority owner Chip Foster said, "That race was beyond our wildest dreams. I was thinking we might have a chance for a track record, maybe going 2:01 but 1:59.3. Wow. The last quarter was 28.4. I think we are going to have a target on our back now, but it's a good target to have." Mike Sentiwany Jr. and MJ James also have a share in Royal Deceptor, who set the record in his first pari-mutuel start.   Insomniac (Jason Bartlett) finished in second, 3-1/4 lengths behind while Wings Of Royalty (Chris Lems) took the show spot.   The first division was a survival of the fittest. Stoneham (Riina Rekila) was a beneficiary of a breaking pace-setting Eskimo Joe in the stretch and managed to score the $17.80 victory in 2:04.4.   A total of four trotters went off stride as the gate swung open, leaving Stoneham, Curly's Son and Eskimo Joe (Ray Schnittker) as the trio alive for the win. Eskimo Joe set the fractions of 31.2, 1:03 and 1:34.2 and looked home free in the stretch but jumped it off and finished in third. The unfortunate miscue allowed Stoneham (Lucky Chucky-Toss Up) to cruise on by for the victory while Curly's Son (Dan Daley) took second place.   Stoneham is owned by Overseas Farms LTD and is trained by Rekila.   The third division saw former Buffalo Raceway regular Ray Schnittker zoom wire-to-wire with Gabe The Bear Dean ($6.00).   Setting the fractions of 31.4, 1:03.1 and 1:33.4, Gabe The Bear Dean had no trouble in trotting away from the field of seven in 2:03.3, easily beating Tango Pirate (Truman Gale) by 8-3/4 lengths while Crazy Levi (Jeff Gregory) was third.   Gabe The Bear Dean (Lucky Chucky-Madam Hooch) is owned by Schnittker and the Minix Stables.   John Cummings Jr. also returned to Buffalo Raceway and used a first over brush with Pier Ho Exotic ($17.80) and claim the final leg in a solid 2:01.3, the second fastest time of the night in the Sire Stakes.   Pier Ho Exotic (Conway Hall-Rose Run Exotic) took the lead past the three-quarter marker and cruised past a stubborn Redneck Royalty (Howard Okusko Jr.) and won by a length. Luck Of Macrea (Ray Fisher Jr.) took the show position.   Megan Wilson trains Pier Ho Exotic for owner Cummings Jr.   In the Excelsior Class A races, both worth $12,500, Guilty Man ($11.40) took the first division in 2:03 for driver Dan Daley and Progession ($13.80) went the mile in 2:05.4 for Tyler Raymer in the second leg,   The $6,500 non-betting Excelsior B race went to Global Revolution in 2:05.1 for Daley.   The weekly $10,500 Open Pace for Fillies and Mares saw Ugly Betty (Bartlett) use a strong stretch drive and collar the front-stepping Case Solved (Jim Morrill Jr.) by a half length in 1:54.4. CS Kentucky (Kevin Cummings) finished in third.   Owned by Margaret Payne and Jennifer Falcone, the Dennis Dylo-trained Ugly Betty has now won seven times in 21 starts in 2014 and has earned $48,423.   Racing will continue on Friday night with 13 races on tap. Post time will be 6:40 p.m.   For more information including race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- There's another bull's eye on a Buffalo Raceway track record on Wednesday night when the New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters take dead aim at the 2:01.2 mark set by Timothy Patrick (2012) and The Lindy Treaty (2013).   With this classification's time either broke or tied the past two seasons, a new mark could easily be established. There's been a total of five standards either tied or broken at Buffalo Raceway this season. There's total of 30 talented freshmen trotters that are entered in the the four $27,250 division, all ready to take their best shot. For most, this will be their first 'real' start.   Lucky Chucky has sired eight of the entrants while Conway Hall is next with seven, RC Royalty six, Crazed five, Credit Winner three and Cash Hall one.   The first division will go off as the second race with Royal Conway (RC Royalty-Miss Conway) scoring from the two post as the 5-2 favorite with Gates Brunet in the sulky. Royal Conway registered a 1:58.2 qualifier at Vernon Downs on June 27.   The main threat could come from Lucky Ten K (Lucky Chucky-Promising Deal) who gets the services of Chris Lems out of the six spot. Lucky Ten K has a 2:00 and a 2:00.3 qualifier under his belt at Vernon and is the 3-1 second choice.   In the second division, set as the third race, Azucar (Crazed-Lindy Loves Candy) has a pari-mutual win already after scoring a two-length victory at Vernon Downs in 1:58.1. He'll start from the six post for Brunet and open at 3-1 odds.   The morning line favorite, however, is Wings Of Royalty (RC Royalty-Sparkling Cider) at 5-2. He gets the seven post for Lems. Wings Of Royalty opened with a 2:02.2 qualifier then sprung a 1:59.1 time over the Vernon Downs surface.   It could be a battle from the inside posts in the third leg, scheduled as the fifth race. Drinksforthehouse (Conway Hall-Pacific Photo) gets the garden spot and Lems. He enters as the 5-2 morning line choice thanks to a 1:58.4 qualifier at Vernon Downs.   He'll be challenged from the inside by Four Buck Chuck (Lucky Chucky-Bama Hall) who has Doug McNair in the bike. Four Buck Chuck has a 2:03.4 clocking in a qualifier over the 7/8-mile Mohawk Raceway Track. He's listed at 3-1.   Habitat (Conway Hall-Habit's Best) has been sensational over the Gaitway Farm's mile track, producing times of 1:58.1 and 1:59.4, winning his two qualifiers by a combined 33 lengths. He'll have Jim Morrill Jr. at the controls and is the 5-2 morning line selection.   Mambo Blue Chip (Lucky Chucky-Flirty Two) arrives from the Meadowlands with miles of 2:01 and 2:03. He'll begin out of the four post at 3-1 for Jeff Gregory.   While Morrill Jr. is listed on just one favorite in the four Sires Stakes races, be very aware of him. He's been in 40 races thus far in the Sire Stakes with 15 victories. He's been in the money another 14 times and has earned $463,493, far and away the best among all drivers.   Looking at his Excelsior Series statistics, Morrill Jr. has been in 64 races and has won 18 of them and has been in the money 27 other times.   His seasonal totals at Buffalo Raceway are astounding as well with 66 starts, 25 victories and has been in the money 71 percent of the time with $257,463 in winnings.   There will be a non-betting $6,300 Excelsior Series B races at 4:40 p.m. while a pair of $12,500 Excelsior Series A races will be sprinkled in the regular 12-race card that gets underway at 5 p.m.   For more information, including upcoming promotions, news, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

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