This Week: Blue Chip Matchmaker and George Morton Levy series finals and consolations, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Courageous Lady, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; W.N. Reynolds Memorial, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; and Dexter Cup elimination, Freehold Raceway, Freehold, N.J. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Yonkers this week features the $567,000 final and the $100,000 consolation of the George Morton Levy series for open pacers, as well as the $371,400 final and $75,000 consolation in the Blue Chip Matchmaker series for open pacing mares. All four races will take place on Saturday (April 26). Northfield Park on Friday night (April 25) will hold the $110,000 Courageous Lady for 3-year-old filly pacers. A field of six ladies will go to the post in the track’s 11th race. Meadowlands Racetrack’s first Grand Circuit event of the season will take place on Saturday night (April 26) with the $49,015 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers. Freehold Raceway will host on Saturday afternoon (April 26) a single $38,460 elimination for the Dexter Cup for 3-year-old open trotters. The $115,370 Dexter Cup final will be held on Saturday (May 3). Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Yonkers Raceway hosted the fifth and final preliminary round of the Blue Chip Matchmaker and George Morton Levy Series this past weekend. A pair of $40,000 Matchmaker divisions went postward. Series points leader Yagonnakissmeornot (Daniel Dube) did nothing to diminish her reputation, winning the opening event with a solid, two-move effort. She tackled Scandalous Hanover just past the 1:25 three-quarters, taking a short lead into the lane. Yagonnakissmeornot never relinquished the baton, winning by a length in 1:53.2. Camille closed inside for second, with Ramalama third. Monkey On My Wheel (Yannick Gingras) authored the 13-1 upset in the second Matchmaker split, going by a tiring favorite Somwherovrarainbow in mid-stretch. Monkey On My Wheel then held off 75-1 rank outsider Summertime Lea by a head in 1:53.2. Somwherovrarainbow had to settle for third, beaten three-quarters of a length. Foiled Again, harness racing’s richest-ever pacer, added nothing to his $6.1 million bankroll, winding up a non-factor sixth in the third and final $50,000 division of the George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series this past Saturday. Starting outside his six rivals, he and driver Yannick Gingras had Mach It So leave directly inside of him. Foiled Again -- his place in this week’s final already secure -- took back to last and never reached contention. Meanwhile, stablemate Easy Again (George Brennan) won by a couple of lengths. Mach It So was a solid, first-up second, with Mr Hasani N third. The evening’s other two Levy events were won by P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett) and Dancin Yankee (Ron Pierce). The former, from post No. 6, left for a seat, wound up in a three-hole, then angled wide in and out of the final turn. He picked a dueling Clear Vision and Apprentice Hanover for the victory. The final margin was a length over Clear Vision in a life best-matching 1:51.1. As for Dancin Yankee, he negated his outside seven-hole at the start, rebuffed a quarter-move from Bettor’s Edge and finished it off in 1:51, matching Foiled Again’s effort a week ago as the fastest mile of the series. The margin was 1-1/4 lengths, with Bettor’s Edge second and Texican N third. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2014, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2014 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend at Yonkers: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras – 136; 2. George Brennan – 119.5; 3. Tim Tetrick – 85; 4. Daniel Dube – 50; 5. Brian Sears- 45. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke – 240.5; 2. PJ Fraley – 108; 3. Rene Allard – 50; 4. Joe Holloway – 27; 5. Josh Green – 22. Owners: 1. Bamond Racing – 93.5; 2t. Burke Racing - 61.75; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi – 61.75; 4. Brad Grant – 22.5; 5. M1 Stable – 22.1. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next weekend at Freehold Raceway, Meadowlands Racetrack and Miami Valley Raceway. Freehold has the Lady Suffolk for 3-year-old filly trotters on Friday (May 2) and the Dexter Cup for 3-year-old open trotters on Saturday (May 3). Meadowlands Racetrack will host the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old filly pacers on Friday (May 2) and the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old colt pacers on Saturday (May 3). The first ever Grand Circuit races at Miami Valley Raceway, the Chip Noble Memorial for older pacing mares and the Miami Valley Distaff for older trotting mares, will take place on Sunday (May 4). by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit
Cranbury, NJ... March sustaining and nominating payments for Hambletonian Society stake events are due Saturday, March 15 and per USTA Rule 12 section 4, must be postmarked by midnight on Monday, March 17. Changes to the March 15 payment schedule include an increase in the Breeders Crown future eligibility payment from $350 to $500 and the first of three payments for a pair of $100,000 (est.) open events for both gaits at Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway. The Hambletonian Society services 137 of harness racing's richest and most prestigious events and provides one-stop shopping for your staking needs. The website Hambletonian.org contains all the tools and information necessary to stake your horse yourself. All forms are available on the web site and are PDF fillable. Race conditions, payment forms and much more information are now available online, as well as eligibility lists for races that had a final payment on Feb. 15, 2014. For additional information call the Society offices at 609-371-2211. Listed below are the stakes with payments for all ages due March 15. Delvin Miller Adios (and Adioo Volo Filly Division) Arden Downs Stakes Ben Franklin Breeders Crown Cane Pace (and Shady Daisy) Carl Erskine (was Oliver Trot) 3-year-olds Centaur Trotting Classic FFA (was Pride in Progress) Circle City 3-year-olds Cleveland Classic (and Courageous Lady) Currier & Ives Trot (and Filly Trot) Dayton Derby 4 & Older Dexter Cup (and Lady Suffolk Trot) Earl Beal Jr Memorial Trot The Elevation 2-year-old Pacing Colts Fox Stake Hambletonian (and Hambletonian Oaks) Max Hempt Memorial (and James M. Lynch Filly Division) Historic Series Hoosier Park Pacing Derby FFA ( was Indiana Pacing) Hoosier Stakes The Horseman Ralph Wilfong (for 2YO Trotters) Kentuckiana Stallion Mgt. Filly Pace & Trot (for 2YO Fillies) Keystone Classics 2-year-olds Keystone Classics 3-year-olds Landmark Stakes Madison County 2-year-olds (was Circle City) Matron Series (3YOs) Matron Series (2YOs) Messenger Stake (and Lady Maud) Carl Milstein Memorial 3-year-olds Miami Valley Distaff 4 & Older Monument Circle 3-year-olds PA All Stars 2 & 3-year-olds Progress Pace W. N. Reynolds Memorial Stakes Art Rooney Pace (and Lismore Filly Division) John Simpson Memorial Colt & Filly Stakes Tompkins Memorial & Geers Stakes Yonkers Trot Yonkers Trot by Moira Fanning, for the Hambletonian Society
Consistent Univers de Pan (6m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudere) led virtually all the way to win today's 200,000e UET Masters Series Gr. I Grand Criterium de Vitesse at Cagnes sur mer by a comfortable three lengths. Trainer/driver Philippe Daugeard teamed the favored (1.9/1 odds) winner alertly off the gate and secured the top spot when well supported Triode de Felliere went off stride in battling for the lead shortly after the start. Once on the lead Daugeard rated the pace and his 13 other rivals were unable to serve a strong challenge. Univers de Pan was timed in 1.10kr over the 1609 meter autostart course (one mile in 1:52.63). That time equaled the third fasted in race history (Varenne 1.09.6kr in 2002; Kesaco Phedo 1.09.9kr in 2004 and 1.10kr by Santa Rosa France in 2012). Italy's Pascia'Lest, with Andrea Guzzinati aboard, took the pocket and eventually ended second when he out battled the game mare Vanika du Ruel, who survived an outside journey for Franck Anne to hold third. Italy's Nesta Effe was never in the hunt and finished unplaced. Univers de Pan's victory was his 17th in a solid career and put his earnings at 1,037,530 euros. He's owned by Olivier Horvath and today secured his first Gr. I score. Univers de Pan enjoyed a good winter meet at Paris-Vincennes where he was second in the Grand Prix de France, Prix de la Marne and Prix de Belgique. He was also fifth in the Prix de Selection. Being age six, look for this one to be a factor in future Gr. I races in France and throughout Europe. He proved today that he can leave, rate and sprint home in sprinter distance contests. His pedigree is 73% French trotteur, 27% Standardbred and with a 3.8% inbreeding coefficient. March 9, 2014 Cagnes sur mer, Grand Criterium de Vitesse de la Cote d'Azur (Grand Criterium Nice-Martin), 1609 meters autostart, 14 starters, purse 200,000e, Gr. I International UET Masters Series 1.10kr (1:52.63) 1st Univers de Pan (6m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudere), Philippe Daugeard trainer/driver for owner Olivier Horvath, 1.9/1 odds, his 17th career win 2nd Pascia'Lest (5m Varenne-Superiors Sun-Diamond Way), Andrea Guzzinati up for trainer Thierry Duvaldestin and owner Samuele Querci, 18/1, (Italy) 3rd Vanika du Ruel (5f Jardy-Jacarandine-Vroum d'Or), Frank Anne driver/trainer, 8.8/1 odds, earning now â‚¬1,015,350 4th Aisle Stand (7f Scarlet Knight-Twisterella-Super Arnie), 116/1 odds, Jos. Verbeeck up for trainer Ronny Kuiper, (Sweden) 5th Quoumba de Guez (10f Urfist des Pres-Vanina de Mareuil-Neron Grandchamp), J-M Bazire trainer/driver, 14/1 odds, career earnings now â‚¬1,155,569 Note that Pascia'Lest represents significant American pedigree as his dam, Superiors Sun, is a daughter of Superiors Crown (Speedy Crown-Superior Sweep-Hickory Pride). Superior Sweep won the Old Oaken Bucket, the Lady Suffolk and Kentucky Futurity. Replay of today's Gr. I event can be seen using the link below: http://www.harnesslink.com/International/ by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com
Cranbury, NJ... The initial payment deadline for eligibility to more than 137 stake events at 16 different tracks, headlined by the $1 million Hambletonian at The Meadowlands on August 2 and the $5 million Breeders Crown events at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, NJ, on November 21 and 22, is fast approaching. Because of the federal holiday on Monday, payments for all Hambletonian-Society serviced Stakes must be postmarked by midnight on Tuesday, February 18, per USTA rule 12, section 4. A host of new stakes in Ohio will be administered by the Hambletonian Society, including the $400,000 Carl Milstein Memorial at Northfield Park for three-year-old colt pacers, and a pair of open events for both gaits at Miami Valley Gaming & Racing and Hollywood at Dayton Raceway. The inaugural $400,000 Hambletonian Maturity for four-year-old trotters at the Meadowlands is new on the stakes calendar this year and the four Historic races for sophomores are moving to Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. Yonkers Raceway has guaranteed purses of $500,000 each for their Triple Crown events of the Messenger Stakes for 3-year-old colt pacers and the Yonkers Trot for 3-year-old colt trotters. The Hambletonian Society services 137 of harness racing's richest and most prestigious events and provides one-stop shopping for your staking needs. The web site, Hambletonian.org, contains all the tools and information necessary to stake your horse yourself. Race conditions, payment forms and much more information is now available online. For more information call the Society offices at 609-371-2211. Races with February 15 payments due: • Delvin Miller Adios and Adioo Volo Filly • Arden Downs • Ben Franklin Free For All • Breeders Crown • Cane Pace and Shady Daisy • Carl Erskine for 3-year-old trotters (was Oliver Trot) • Centaur Trotting Classic FFA (was Pride in Progress) • Circle City 3-year-olds • Cleveland Classic and Courageous Lady • Currier & Ives Trot and Filly Trot • Dexter Cup and Lady Suffolk Trot • Earl Beal Jr Memorial Trot • Hambletonian & Hambletonian Oaks • Hambletonian Maturity • Max Hempt Memorial & James M. Lynch Filly Division • Historic Series • Hoosier Park Pacing Derby (was Indiana Pacing Derby) • The Horseman • Kentuckiana Stallion Management Pace for 2YO Fillies • Kentuckiana Stallion Management Trot for 2YO Fillies • Keystone Classics 3-year-olds • Landmark Stakes • Matron Series 3-year-olds • Messenger Stake & Lady Maud • Miami Valley Distaff Pace for Mares • Miami Valley Distaff Trot for Mares • Carl Milstein Memorial for 3-year-old colt pacers • Monument Circle 3-year-olds • PA All Stars 3-year-olds • Progress Pace • W. N. Reynolds Memorial Stakes • Art Rooney Pace & Lismore Filly Pace • John Simpson Memorial Colt & Filly Stakes • Tompkins Memorial & Geers Stake • Yonkers Trot & Lady Suffolk Filly Trot by Moira Fanning for Hambletonian Society
Yarrah Boko (9m Coktail Jet-Big Blue Kitten-Pine Chip) scored a rallying victory in today's fourth "B", the 120,000 euro purse Prix de Belgique over 2850 meters turning start, UET Masters Series International, 15 starters. Strategically handled by Pierre Vercruysse, Yarrah Boko scored in 1.14.4kr and repeated his performance of winning this event a year ago. Trond Anderssen trains the winner for owner Jan Erik Anderssen. Holland's Boko Stables bred the winner, now with 36 career wins for earnings in excess of 1.1 million euro. Vercruysse left alertly with Yarrah Boko to take the lead and then yielded to race in third on the inside until top of the long Paris-Vincennes lane. Blocked briefly, the pair escaped and moved three wide to wear down the leaders. Yarrah Boko did not start in the 2013 Prix d'Amerique due to injury and then returned to racing on July 14 with three straight wins. He last raced October 26 at Jagersro finishing third in the C.L. Mullers Memorial Several competitors also raced well today including the six year-old youngster Univers de Pan, the race favorite, Save The Quick and The Best Madrik both of which finished strongly after overcoming 25 meter handicaps. Vanika du Ruel, the speedy five year-old mare handled by Franck Anne, made a strong push at the leaders around the last bend to get into contention before fading to seventh. A large enthusiastic crowd was on hand for the excellent racing card with the Prix de Belgique being today's Quinte+ race of the day. Dam of the winner, Big Blue Kitten (1997, Pine Chip-Dasooner Dabettor-Meadow Road) took a 3, 2:00.4h record at Freehold and at three won the Lady Suffolk and in Sweden the Elitsto. She was bred by UK and NBA basketball legend Sam Bowie and sold November 10, 2001 to Boko Stables. The $80,000 yearling at Kentucky Select Sale thus disappeared from USTA records. She has produced six foals in Europe, five winners, six money winners including Yarrah Boko, Wolf Boko (by Lemon Dra), Zola Boko (by Goetmals Wood), Aristocrat Boko )by From Above), Boa Boko (by Express It) and Nostradamos Face (by Varenne). January 12, 2014 - Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Belgique, 120,000 euro purse, Gr. II, UET Masters Series International, 15 starters 1.14.4kr Fractions: 1.15.8kr at 1500; 1.15.4kr at 1000, 1.14.6kr at 500, 1.14.4kr finish 1st Yarrah Boko (9m Coktail Jet-Big Blue Kitten-Pine Chip), Pierre Vercruysse up for Trond Anderssen trainer, owner Jan Erik Anderssen and breeder Boko Stables, his 36th career win for earnings in excess of 1.1 million euro, off at 5.8/1, winner of this "B" event last year in 1.13.3kr, injured and non-starter in Prix d'Amerique, returned to racing July 14, 2013 and posted three straight wins, last started October 26 finishing third in C.L. Mullers Memorial at Jagersro 2nd Univers de Pan (6m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudiere), Philippe Daugeard up at 1.8/1 favorite 3rd Soleil du Fosse (8m Jag de Bellouet-Fortune du Posse-Neric Barbes), Thierry Duvaldestin up at 9/1 4th Save The Quick (8f Jasmin de Flore-Heureuse Duchess-Blue Dream), J-M Bazire up at 26/1 for Ecurie Quick and trainer Franck Leblanc, finished well 5th Roxana de Barbray (9f Speed Clayettois-Iriana des Enclos-Vrai Lutin), Eric Raffin up at 14/1 6th The Best Madrik (7m Coktail Jet-Lady Madrik-Biesolo), Jean-Etienne Dubois up, raced superbly overcoming 25 meter handicap by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com
Although she had a little luck in her last start, a victory in a $40,900 division of the Lady Suffolk at Freehold Raceway on May 3, Vida De Vie, unlike four of her opponents, managed to remain flat for the entire mile and improved her harness racing record to 3-1-1-0 with $21,650 in the bank.
Here are the latest standings in the HANA Harness 2013 Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge sponsored by The Hambletonian Society, Chicago Racing, IHHA, Meadowlands, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs after a weekend of harness racing stakes action at Freehold Raceway (Lady Suffolk, Dexter Cup) and the Meadowlands (Simpson Memorial, Meadowlands Maturity).
A pair of harness racing fillies bred and owned by New Jersey's Joie De Vie Farm, both trained by Chris Ryder, swept the split divisions of the Lady Suffolk on Friday, May 3, 2013 at Freehold Raceway.
This Week: The Grand Circuit is off this week. Harness Racing will resume June 2 at Hoosier Park in Indiana. Last time: The 2012 Grand Circuit season opener took place last week at Freehold Raceway with the $138,300 Dexter Cup for 3-year-old colt trotters and two divisions in the $77,700 Lady Suffolk for 3-year-old filly trotters.
Two odds-on favorites - For A Dancer and Cocktail Attire - prevailed in $38,850 split divisions of the Lady Suffolk for harness racing three-year-old trotting fillies on Friday, May 4, 2012 at Freehold Raceway.
The Freehold Raceway, America's oldest pari-mutuel harness racing track, is back in action starting March 1 with the opening of a 90-day spring meet.
Live harness racing returns to Central New Jersey on March 1, 2012 with the opening of the 90-day meet at Freehold Raceway, America's oldest pari-mutuel harness track.
In the first half of the 52nd edition of harness racing's Lady Suffolk Trot, Pacific Splash took full advantage of a break past the half by Cat Manzi with 1/5 favorite Refuse to Lose.
Harness racing this week: Freehold Grand Circuit, Freehold Raceway, Freehold, New Jersey. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit begins its season opening stop at Freehold Raceway this Friday (May 6) with two divisions in the $79,650 Lady Suffolk for 3-year-old filly trotters.
The 52nd edition of the harness racing Lady Suffolk stakes goes in divisions at Freehold on Friday, May 6. The 6th and 8th races each carry a $39,825 purse.