Day At The Track
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Plainville, MA --- After having minimal success at harness racing in Ohio as a 2 and 3-year-old, Mad Dog has turned his fortunes around as an aged horse in Massachusetts. On Friday (Aug. 16) at Plainridge Park, he set the bar for himself once again after he won the $12,000 5-year-old and under conditioned trotting feature with a personal best effort. Post eight wasn't and issue for Mad Dog (John Beckwith) as he left the gate strong and rolled up to the lead by the quarter in :27.3. As the race moved to the half, he was unchallenged and set his own pace until the five-eighths pole when Simple Kaos (Shawn Gray) and Chav Hanover (Steve Nason) came in the outer tier. Simple Kaos engaged Mad Dog at the three-quarters and the two tangled around the final bend and into the stretch just a neck apart. Trotting down the lane, Simple Kaos was joined by Hs Marcia (Drew Campbell) in pursuit of Mad Dog and they both inched closer as the wire approached. Mad Dog continued to fight and held his advantage through the beam to win by a nose in 1:55.1, which was a new lifetime mark. Mad Dog ($14.00) has now won four races this year and has hit the board 13 out of 18 starts. As a result he has earned $40,010 for his owners Michele Nelson and Jeffrey Nelson. Joe Nelson does the training. Also on the card were a pair of $10,000 condition races -- one on each gait -- that saw their winners both take marks in victory. In the pace, Western Thunder (Drew Campbell) pulled first-over at the half and overtook the front-running Rock The Heavens (Matt Athearn) in deep stretch to win by 1-3/4 lengths in 1:54.3, which was a new lifetime mark. It was the fourth seasonal win for Western Thunder ($4.40) who is owned by Kathleen Brewer and trained by Timmie Griffith. Then in the trot, Whiskey Lindy (Drew Monti) left like a rocket in :27.1, opened up five-lengths and then never looked back. Basically unchallenged during the mile, Whiskey Lindy turned for home with a length lead and held off a late charge by a fast closing Box Of Gifts (Shawn Gray) to win in 1:56.1, which was a new seasonal mark. Whiskey Lindy ($4.00) is owned by Greathorse and trained by Domenico Cecere. Drew Campbell led all drivers on Friday with three wins while Mike Stevenson was right behind him with two. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (Aug. 19) with post time at 4 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA --- Making a second-over trip work to perfection, Nick Graffam guided Only Passing Thru to a strong come from behind harness racing victory to capture the $16,000 Open Handicap trot at Plainridge Park on Friday afternoon (May 17). Joey Bats (John Beckwith) and Namesmuscle (Matt Athearn) argued heartily for the lead before Joey Bats took it over at the quarter. As the field moved towards the half an outer flow began to form with Northern Skyway (Bruce Aldrich Jr.), Only Passing Thru and Nows The Moment (Mike Stevenson) marching forward in that order. The race stayed the same up the backside until Joey Bats hit three-quarters in 1:24.4 and started to fade, leaving Northern Skyway on top in the middle with Only Passing Thru tipping three-deep for the stretch drive. When Only Passing Through hit the straight he swelled up and trotted right on down the road and to the wire leaving his competition behind him to win by a length and one-half in 1:54.3. It was the fourth win in 13 starts this year for Only Passing Thru ($6.60) and owner Diane Whittemore. Marissa Chadbourne trains the winner. In the $12,000 co-featured conditioned trot, Lindy The Great got his season off and rolling with his first win of the year as the prohibitive 1-9 favorite. Lindy The Great (Patrizio Ancora) took a leisurely outside stroll to the front and cleared past the quarter in :28.4. Ancora kept him motoring along unimpeded for the next half mile until Sortie Hanover (Drew Campbell) snuck up the rim and the pocket-sitting Front Street (Jay Randall) mounted a mild bid from the three-quarters until they hit the stretch. But Lindy The Great was unfazed and trotted home methodically to win easily and wrapped up in 1:55.2. Lindy The Great                                  --Tom Melanson photo Lindy The Great ($2.20) has now earned $413,810 lifetime in only 32 starts for owners K R Breeding LLC and Robert Rudolf. Domenico Cecere does the training. Last year Lindy The Great faced the likes of Homicide Hunter, Pinkman and Guardian Angel AS. This year he may meet some of them again as he is eligible to the $250,000 Spirit of Massachusetts Trot that will be held at Plainridge Park on Sunday (July 28). Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (May 20) with post time at 4 p.m.   By Tim Bojarski for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Scarborough, Maine (August 28, 2015) - The weekend's action got off to a blistering start at Scarborough Downs as record breaking speed was generated, in long shot fashion, in just the second event of the Friday (8-28) harness racing twilight card. Bryan's Angel impressively became the fastest winning four-year-old mare in the 65 year history of the Downs after driver John Beckwith aggressively sent the striking miss to an early lead after stacking the field three-deep to a quarter timed in a moderate 29.1. The tempo picked up from that point though as the daughter of Cash Hall-Paradise Quickie soon opened up what would prove to be an insurmountable advantage to stop the clock in 1:58.3 while coasting to a six-length margin of victory. The zippy effort supplanted the previous divisional benchmark of 1:59.4 which had been set by Orderingin and Heath Campbell in 2014. Bryan's Angel is owned by Danbry Racing Inc. of Allentown, NJ and is trained by Shannon Watson and returned a hefty $43.60 to win. Live racing is proudly featured at Scarborough Downs on Friday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT). The Sunday matinee gets underway at 1:30. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs

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