The late season surge of Amy Giberson, Stephanie Winship, Carl Lacy and Monty Thompson’s Silver Devil continued on Friday, Nov. 22nd as the handsome roan gelding completely dismantled five other Illinois conceived and foaled three-year-old pacing colts in a 6 ¼ length romp while taking the $15,000 Cole Muffler Stake at Maywood Park. The final time was 1:54.0. Taking full advantage of a nice inside draw and the defection of his main rival, Mystical Walter who was a “Judges Scratch”, the altered son of Duneside Perch—Armbro Wahine swept from third to first after watching Golden Nugget (Jason Brewer) and Fox Valley Norman (John Roberts) battle through an opening quarter in 27.4. In command of the proceedings the rest of the way the Nick Giberson trained sophomore rattled off middle splits of 56.4 & 1:25.4 while putting daylight between himself and his competition. Leaving his rivals in his wake on the final turn Silver Devil sealed the deal with a 28.1 final quarter to post his 11th win in 26 starts this season. Monopoly Man (John De Long) rallied to be second while Colechester (Sam Widger) finished a distant third. Unraced as a two-year-old, the 1-5 favorite of the betting public returned $2.40, $2.10 & $2.10 while upping his record to 11-2-1 in 26 lifetime starts with earnings of $84,614. The .10 cent Pick 6 wager went unclaimed for a third straight racing card on Friday night so there will be a carryover of $15,026 for the Friday, Nov. 29th program at Maywood Park. There is no racing on Thursday, Nov. 28th because of the Thanksgiving holiday. With the three card buildup in the Pick 6 Maywood Park will offer a guaranteed Pick 6 pool of $50,000 on Friday, November 29th. That should provide some lucky “player” with plenty of extra “shopping” money for the Holiday season! Once again the Pick 6 can be played for as little as a .10 cent investment giving all gamblers, regardless of the size of the their bankrolls, a chance to play for a nice payday next Friday night. Post time for the opener on Friday, Nov. 29th at Maywood Park is 7:10 p.m. (central) and the fifth race, which kicks off the guaranteed pool action, is expected to go sometime around 8:30 p.m. (central). by Tom Kelley for Maywood Park
Maywood Park will offer a guaranteed Pick 6 pool of $10,000 onFriday, Nov. 22nd. Becausethe .10 cent minimum wager was not hit last Friday, Nov. 15th and againon Thursday, Nov. 21st, a nice carryover of $5,047 will be added to Friday’swagering pool. The popular Pick 6 wager is offered on races 5 thru 10on Friday’s card. Once again the Pick 6 can be played for as little as a .10 centinvestment giving all gamblers, regardless of the size of the their bankrolls,a chance to play for a nice payday on Friday night. As is always the case on Friday’s at Maywood Park there will alsobe a $10,000 guaranteed pool on the $1 Pick 4 which encompasses the final fourraces of the night (11-14). Handicappers across North America can get a head start on theircompetition with free 12 line program pages for the guaranteed pools courtesyof the USTA Strategic Wagering Initiative and Track Master on the handicappingsection at www.ustrotting.com. Post time for the opener on Friday night at Maywood Park is 7:10 p.m.(central) and the fifth race, which kicks off the guaranteed pool action, expectedto go sometime around 8:30 p.m. (central). by Tom Kelley for Maywood Park
This Week: TVG FFA Series legs, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Progress Pace elimination, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: Meadowlands Racetrack will unveil their new grandstand this Saturday with a card featuring the final preliminary legs of the TVG series for older pacers and trotters. Eliminations were also scheduled in the Governor's Cup for 2-year-old colt pacers, the Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers, the Valley Victory for 2-year-old colt trotters and the Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, but will not be required. Those races will go directly to their lucrative finals on Nov. 30. On Sunday night (Nov. 24), Dover Downs will feature a $35,000 elimination in the Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers. The top eight pacers in the nine horse elimination will advance to the $330,000 (est.) Progress Pace final on Dec. 1. Last time: Eight Matron Stakes finals were featured on the Sunday (Nov. 17) program at Dover Downs. The biggest night in Delaware harness racing history featured multiple track records in the Matron events with more than $1.32 million in purses at stake. [cid:image002.jpg@01CEE5D8.AE518DC0] Among the horses setting a track record was 3-year-old filly pacer Shebestingin, who scored in 1:49.1, besting Ms Caila J Fra (Andy Miller) to the wire in a final quarter of :27.4. Joe Holloway trains the Bettor's Delight-Armbro Tussle filly for Ted Gewertz, L&L DeVisser and Val D'or Farms. She won for the 11th time this season and has earned $554,876. Matt Kakaley moved All Bets Off into the lead after a :26.1 opening quarter and was never headed, collecting a 1:50 triumph in the $154,575 Matron 2-year-old colt pace final, breaking the former track mark of 1:50.4 shared by Heston Blue Chip and If I Can Dream. Ron Burke trains the winner for Frank Baldachino, Rosemary Shelswell, The Panhellenic Stable and Burke Racing Stable. Nuncio knocked two seconds off Explosive Matter's freshman track mark of 1:55 with a powerful 1:53 decision in the $166,650 2-year-old male trot. John Campbell was at the controls as the Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle youngster record his fifth victory in nine starts. Scott Andrews conditions the winner for Stall TZ Inc. Maywood Park hosted four Grand Circuit stakes on their Friday night (Nov. 15) card and Word Power did all the talking in the Windy City Pace, coming up the inside lane to capture Maywood's premiere event in 1:51.4. Scott Zeron steered the 3-year-old son of Western Ideal-Lush Limbaugh for trainer Larry Remmen and owner Brad Grant. Unraced at 2, Word Power pushed his career earnings to $375,804 in securing his seventh lifetime victory in 17 trips postward. Lucan Hanover picked up second-place money, while Apprentice Hanover held on for show honors. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2013, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will 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). Hanover Shoe Farms is the sponsor for the 2013 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,772; 2. Tim Tetrick - 1,523; 3. David Miller - 1,123; 4. Brian Sears - 701.5; and 5. Ron Pierce - 672.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,706.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,131.5; 3. Linda Toscano - 493.5; 4. Tony Alagna - 466; and 5. Jonas Czernyson - 447.5. Owners: 1. Burke Racing - 388.5; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 364.05; 3. Frank Bellino - 268.5; 4. Brittany Farms - 263.05; and 5. WJ Donovan - 242.75. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will once again take place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack and Dover Downs. The Meadowlands will host eight stakes, the TVG FFA Series finals for trotters and pacers; the Governor's Cup, Valley Victory, Three Diamonds and Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-olds; the Moni Maker for 3-year-old filly trotters; and the Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers. Dover will host the final in the Progress Pace for 3-year-old pacing colts. by Paul Ramlow for the Grand Circuit
November 18, 2013 – Handicapper Anne Stepien took top honors this past week in HANA Harness’ 2013 Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge sponsored by the Hambletonian Society, Chicago Harness, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs by scoring a net profit of $151.10 for the week which included races from Maywood Park on Friday and the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs on Sunday. Stepien is the only handicapper to score a net gain for the week as she moves closer to one of the payoff positions in the standings. Despite losing ground this week, overall leader Richard Scott remains in front with a net profit of $48.10; $624.95 ahead of second place handicapper Earl Paulson. With a month remaining in the contest, it seemingly will take a huge effort to unseat Scott from the top of the standings. Overall contest leader, Richard Scott remains on top despite his losing performance this week, showing an overall net profit of $106.75, leading the pack by $574.10. As we see from McKelvie’s performance this week, no position is solidified with seven contest dates remaining. Here are the contest standings at the conclusion of action on November 17, 2013. Pos Handicapper Week Gain Net Profit Behind Last Pos Days Missed 1st Richard Scott ($58.65) $48.10 1st 6 2nd Earl Paulson ($109.50) ($576.85) ($624.95) 2nd 7 3rd Rusty Nash ($123.50) ($740.27) ($788.37) 3rd 4 4th Ann Stepien $151.10 ($867.00) ($915.10) 5th 1 5th Dennis O'Hara ($27.50) ($1,000.45) ($1,048.55) 4th 2 6th Garnet Barnsdale ($91.50) ($1,127.74) ($1,175.84) 6th 9 7th Mark McKelvie ($360.00) ($2,079.79) ($2,127.89) 7th 8 8th Gordon Waterstone ($109.80) ($2,173.60) ($2,221.70) 8th 4 9th Sally Hinckley ($207.90) ($2,725.50) ($2,773.60) 9th 0 10th Ray Garnett ($270.10) ($3,369.03) ($3,417.13) 10th 3 Key Hits Garnet Barnsdale – $15 Trifecta Key ($30 Total) paid $223.50; Dennis O’Hara - $4 Exacta Box ($24) on the Galt Trot paid $118.40, $5 Trifecta Key ($30) on the Matron 2yo Filly Trot paid $55.00, $5 Trifecta Key ($30) on the Matron 3yo Colt Trot paid $99.50; Earl Paulson - $15 Exacta Box ($30) on the Matron 2yo Colt Pace paid $147.00; Richard Scott - $.50 Trifecta Key ($24) on the Galt Trot paid $67.25; Anne Stepien - $1 Trifecta Box ($24) on the Cinderella Pace paid $91.80, $2 Trifecta Key ($20) on the Windy City Pace paid $130.80, $5 Exacta Box ($10) on the Windy City Pace paid $99.50; Gordon Waterstone - $3 Exacta Part Wheel ($9) on the Abe Lincoln Pace paid $55.20 Contest Schedule This Week Saturday, November 23, 2013 – Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment - $50,000 TVG FFA Series Trot; $50,000 TVG FFA Series Pace by Allan Schott for HANA .
Word Power did all the talking in the Windy City Pace, coming up the inside passsing lane to capture Maywood Park’s premiere event in 1:51.4 on Friday night. Scott Zeron steered the 3-year-old son of Western Ideal-Lush Limbaugh for trainer Larry Remmen and owner Bradley J. Grant of Milton, Ontario. Sent off at odds of 7-1, Word Power paid $15.80 to win in an upset. Word Power had gotten the lead from the onset of the $176,000 one mile test, but was overtaken by Apprentic Hanover (Jody Jamieson)at the :27.2 first quarter. The favorite Lucan Hanover and driver David Miller then came first over and took the lead inthe middle of the second turn and led the field through the :54.3 half and the1:23.1 three-quarters. He appeared to bea sure winner until the last sixteenth of a mile, when Word Power came surging through on the rail to prevail by a length. “The race didn’t unfold the way I expected,” said winning driver Scott Zeron. “I got lucky that I was able to get up the passing lane. He’s amazing to leave that fast and then come home that fast. He’s superversatile. It’s really tough in that he’s gotten used hard off the gate several times and still has that fortitude to come home that strong.” Unraced at two, Word Power pushed his career earnings to $375,804 in securing his seventh lifetime victory in 17 trips postward. Lucan Hanover picked up second-place money,while Apprentice Hanover held on for show honors. by Kimbery Rinker for Maywood Park
Archetto Hanover captured the $87,000 Abe Lincoln Stake in 1:55.2 after a brutal stretch duel that necessitated a photo to decide the winner in the one mile test for freshman pacing colts and geldings. The freshman son of Bettor’s Delight picked up his maiden victory in his 18th try for driver Lewayne Miller and trainer Erv Miller and pushed his career earnings to $137,076. “He’s been a real nice horse all along and last week he was sick but tonight he was ready to go,” said the winning driver. “I knew it was a soft bunch other than Odds On Rhodonite and I knew I had enough horse to get by him in the late going. I was very confident in the stretch.” Total Sin (John DeLong) took the early lead to the :28.2 first quarter, before Odds On Rhodonite (Corey Callahan) took over, leading the field to a :56.4 half and to the 1:26 three-quarter marker. Archetto Hanover then challenged on the outside and around the final turn pushed his nose in front and appeared to be an easy winner going into the stretch. However Odds On Rhodonite wouldn’t go away, and Total Sin found another gear and came up the inside lane, but at the wire Archetto Hanover keep his whiskers in front, winning by a head over Total Sin, while Odds On Rhodonite nabbed third. Archetto Hanover is owned by Paymaq Racing of Illinois,Greg Gillis of Ontario and Louis Willinger of Kentucky. by Kimberly A. Rinker for Maywood Park
Rossini and driver Peter Wrenn cruised to a 1:55.3 victory in the $110,000 Galt Stake for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings on Friday night, Nov. 15 at Maywood Park. The son of Classic Photo-Beverly Crusher is trained by Jim Raymer for the Harbor Racing Stable, LLC of Houston, Texas, and picked up his tenth win of the season in 22 starts. His seasonal earnings now stand at $213,250 and his career bankroll at $231,843. “It was a pretty easy task once we got out of the gate,”said winning driver Peter Wrenn. “I was a little concerned up the backside as I thought I might get bottled out, but this horse is really tough and I don’t think he’s gone too many poor races. Jim (trainer Raymer) is a great horse trainer and this horse is very tough and he handles the turns really well and that’s a bonus. This horse just isn’t going to quit.” Rossini finished half a length in front of Dewycolorintheline (Corey Callahan), with Pine Credit (Lewayne Miller) notching third-place money. Dewycolorintheline took the early lead to the :28.3 firstquarter and to the :58 half, before the hard-trying Lindy’s Tru Grit pulled first over, challenging the leader at the 1:26.4 three-quarter marker. Creampuff Macdaddy (Jody Jamieson) then wen tthree-wide around the final turn, while Rossini went past the tiring Lindy’sTru Grit to prevail by half a length. by Kimberly A. Rinker for Maywood Park
Fort Silky and driver Casey Leonard went wire-to-wire to capture the $30,000 Lester McKeever Stake in 1:53.3 on Nov. 15 at Maywood Park. The 7-year-old son of Ft. Apache Hanover is trained byTerry Leonard for owners John Prentice and Neve Jan Ikeler of Illinois. After sweeping through fractions of :28.1, :57.2 and 1:25.4, Fort Silky held off second-place finisher Uncle Smoothie (Matt Krueger)by three-quarters of a length. Mystical Walter (Lewayne Miller) finished third. Fort Silky added the $15,000 winner’s share to his seasonal bankroll of $237,795. “This race worked out exactly the way we wanted it to,”Leonard said. “My horse left well as I had him pretty reved up and I was a little surprised nobody left. Going into the last turn my horse felt really good. He doesn’t finish as well here as he does at Balmoral, but he was good enough to get the job done. I love horses that just get it, like he does. Sometimes the fastest horse doesn’t always win the race—sometimes it’s just the horse that keeps on trying.” Fort Silky scored his fourth consecutive victory andpushed his career earnings to $551,935. by Kimberly A. Rinker for Maywood Park
Pertty Music used a three-wide move around Maywood’s final turn to win the $73,000 Cinderella Stake for freshman pacing fillies in 1:53.2. John DeLong piloted the Tom Harmer trained, owned and bred daughter of Jereme’s Jet-My Metallica to her fifth win of the season and sixth career victory She went off at odds of 8-1 and paid $19.40 to win.. “I got away fourth but didn’t want to be first over against Always About Katey,” said DeLong. “I raced her over here a couple of weeks ago but she bled pretty bad, but she was much better tonight and this is her home turf. She had the nine-hole in the American National and the field was a bit softer this week. She’s a very nice filly. I was a little nervous for a few seconds in the stretch but she’s a professional and got the job done tonight.” Pertty Music sat in the middle of the field of seven fillies while Always About Katey (Todd Warren) led the field through fractions of :27.2 and :56. Auniqueaquisition (Mike Oosting) pulled first over with a mild bid but failed to gain ground as thef ield went by the 1:24.2 three-quarter marker. Pertty Music then stormed to the outside around the final turn and stormed by her rivals, winning by half a length over Always About Katey, with State Street Liz (Robert Smolin). The victory pushed Pertty Music’s seasonal earnings to$110,236 and her career earnings to $134,292. by Kimberly Rinkler for Maywood Park
Lucan Hanover appears poised to capture the $176,000 Windy City Pace at Maywood Park on Friday night. The gutsy son of Western Ideal battled outside the winning Captaintreacherous all the way through the lengthy Balmoral Park stretch last Saturday night, finishing second by half a length in 1:49 in the $256,000 American National 3-Year-Old Colt Pace in rein to David Miller. Miller, 48, who is set to enter Harness Racing’s Hall of Fame in 2014, has won more than 10,865 races and sports career earnings in excess of $175 million, ranking him fourth on the all-time earnings list among harness drivers. He was voted 2003 Driver of the Year and has won 11 Triple Crown events and 12 Breeders Crown trophies. “I like this horse a lot; he’s raced very tough and he really fits my style of driving,” Miller admitted. “I’m really happy that he’s raced so well and has kind of come into himself here late in the season.” “He doesn’t give up, he’s wicked fast and he’s always showed me his talent from day one,” trainer Casie Coleman agreed. “He’s just finally proving it on the racetrack. I think my owners might have thought I was crazy when I told them how nice a horse he was and now he’s starting to prove it.” Coleman, 33, is a British Columbia native who has been honored as Canada’s Trainer of the Year five times in the past eight seasons, including in 2012. Coleman purchased Lucan Hanover for $47,000 at the 2011 Standardbred Horse Sale at Harrisburg. He is the second foal out of the Dragon Again mare Lauren Order, p, 2,1:54s ($78,968) and is a half-brother to Lawgiver Hanover (by Art Major) p, 3, 1:52.2H, a winner of ten races and $306,937. Bred by Hanover Shoe Farms, the bay gelding is owned by Ross Warriner’s West Wins Stable of Cambridge, ON and Christine Calhoun of Chatham, ON. Racing just four times as a freshman, Lucan Hanover did score a 1:53.1 victory at Mohawk in the $29,700 Dream Make Stake on July 19, 2012, pacing wire-to-wire for driver Scott Zeron. Earning $17,365 last year, he’s more than made up for that this season, with 2013 earnings of $466,044. Prior to shipping to Chicago, Lucan Hanover finished fourth in the $450,000 Messenger Final on Nov. 2 at Yonkers, timed in 1:52, after winning his $40,000 elimination at the New York half-miler handily in 1:52.2. “He won his elimination very easily,” Miller stressed. “But then he got the eight-hole in the final, and on a half-mile track, that’s just a bit too much to overcome. He’s in great shape coming into the Windy City, and the two-hole will be a super sweet spot for him. Having an inside post on the smaller track is a definite advantage.” Lucan Hanover finished third by half a length in 1:49.2. to Captaintreacherous in the $500,000 Breeders Crown on Oct. 19 at Pocono Downs, having won his $25,000 elim in a career best 1:48 the week before for Miller. That time set the world record for a 3-year-old pacing gelding on a five-eighths-mile oval and equaled Foiled Again’s mark for the fastest time ever by a gelding pacer of any age. He finished third in the $265,224 Little Brown Jug Final on Sept. 19 at Delaware to stablemate Vegas Vacation after winning his $58,939 elim that same afternoon with Miller in the sulky. “In the Jug final he had some interference in the last turn,” Coleman said. “I think he would’ve been second and maybe given Vegas a run if that didn’t happen.” Lucan Hanover won the $250,000 New Jersey Classic on Aug. 3 at The Meadowlands after having won two legs and the $49,590 final of the Summertime Pacing Series at Mohawk. “He wasn’t racing very well early in the season at the Meadowlands so I brought him back to Toronto and put him in against cheaper horses than what he’d been facing and he got a few wins under his belt,” Coleman explained. “Once he got to beat up on them and win a few races, he got his confidence up. I thought he was going to put in a real big effort on Hambletonian Day (Aug. 3) and that’s exactly what he did. I was real happy with him.” Lucan Hanover had suffered from a pair of unusual splints prior his Mohawk series starts. “He was running out really bad going into the first turn at the Meadowlands,” Coleman said. “He had a couple outside splints that were really bothering him. They were close to his knees so I couldn’t do much vet work until we had a break in his schedule. Now he’s steering straight.” Lucan Hanover has indeed been straight as an arrow for Coleman ever since, winning nine races, with two seconds and four thirds in 19 starts this season. Lifetime he’s amassed $483,409 with a 10-2-4 record from 23 career trips behind the gate. Miller credits Coleman’s insights into the bay gelding’s psyche as one reason for the pacer’s success. “Earlier in the year he got a bit too rambunctious, and when he does that, he has a tendency to flip his palate (and shut off his air),” Miller acknowledged. “Casie (trainer Coleman) made some rigging adjustments which helped tremendously. She put an open bridle on him, and ever since he’s been much more manageable and agreeable and has started racing a lot better as a result. “Before, he was a little too much up on the bit all the time—even scoring down in the post parade,” Miller offered. “Now he’s more relaxed all the way around and is a pleasure to drive, and can use all of that energy and aggressiveness in the race.” by Kimberly Rinker for Maywood Park
Lindys Tru Grit will be seeking his second consecutive victory on a Chicago oval when he steps behind the gate in Friday’s $110,000 Galt Stake for sophomore trotting colts. Last week the son of Cantab Hall took a career record of 1:53.3 en route to capturing the $235,000 American National Three-Year-Old Colt Trot at Balmoral Park. Tim Tetrick steered the brown colt to his fifth seasonal victory for trainer Frank Antonacci, who conditions the youngster for his family’s Lindy Racing stable of Enfield, CT. “That was my first American National win and very exciting,” said Antonacci. “We love racing in Chicago and I think it’s a great test for a horse to go to different venues, different sized racetracks and do well. It’s a good opportunity for us this late in the year.” A winner of $291,924 in his career, Lindys Tru Grit came out of his American National victory in fine shape, Antonacci acknowledged. “He seemed fine after the win,” Antonacci confirmed. “There’s only six days in between starts and he’s plenty fit, so all week we’ve just concentrated on keeping him happy and jogging.” Lindys Tru Grit made only one start at two, but did take a qualifying mark of 2, Q2:00.1 in Lexington in late fall with his trainer at the lines. “Last year he was always battling bad allergies,” Antonacci explained. “He had terrible skin allergies and then would get sick. He battled back and forth with this problem all year long and it was a real struggle to keep him healthy. When he was feeling okay, he would show quarters in :28, and those sparks of speed were enough for us to keep him over the winter and try him again this year as a three-year-old.” In the end, Antonacci used an aggressive treatment to “de-sensitize him to his allergies.” “Him getting better could just be a natural function of the aging process, too,” Antonacci admitted. “It’s hard to say. But it was really a troublesome issue to deal with.” With his allergy problem behind him now, this year Lindys Tru Grit has secured victories in the $121,737 Simcoe Stakes at Mohawk; in the $75,000 Zweig at Vernon; and in a pair of Pennsylvania overnights—one at Pocono Downs and the other at Harrah’s Philadelphia — in addition to his Am-Nat triumph last week. “He’s great gaited, doesn’t wear (trotting) hobbles, and goes with a low head,” Antonacci said. “He’s got a little attitude — but just the kind that you like to see a horse have. He’s a very comfortable horse to be around and to have around in the barn.” Antonacci said he focused on getting Lindys Tru Grit confidence up early in the season, before sending him in against better horses. “For a horse like him that didn’t race at two, I look at the first half of this season like I would a horse’s freshman season,” he stated. “I let him run through the ranks at Pocono and let him progress there. It wasn’t until the third or fourth leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes that we started to get serious with him and he started to get confidence under his belt. He was also just a touch below the top horses but now is really coming into himself. He’s pretty fresh, especially for this late in the season. Lindys Tru Grit has drawn post six for the Galt Stake, but Antonacci thinks his versatile sophomore will be able to handle the task over the twice-a-rounder. “He’s got plenty of gate speed or can race off the pace,” Antonacci stressed. “I think whatever David (driver Miller) wants to do with him, he‘ll be able to with him. He can win on the front, be first-over, or race from off the pace. If he’s good, he’ll do it anyway he can.” Antonacci, 30, has conditioned 307 winners to $7,233,078 in earnings, and driven 100 winners to $906,022. His family’s name is synonymous with the trotting gait, as they have owned some of harness racing’s finest diagonally-gaited specialists, including Speedy Crown, Lindys Pride and $5.5 million dollar earner Moni Maker, to name just a few. A Boston College graduate, Antonacci first stepped into the spotlight in 2008 with the world champion Crazed, who earned more than $1 million at age three and won a Hambletonian elimination and finished second in the final. His other noteworthy trotters include Peter Haughton Memorial winner The Lindy Reserve and world champion filly Highscore Kemp. His father “Sonny” Antonacci established Lindy’s Farm in 1965, and to date the Antonacci family has assembled one of the finest trotting broodmare bands in North America. by Kimberly Rinker for Maywood Park
I went a disappointing three for ten last week, some of my favorite horses got beat, which is bound to happen every now and then. I actually lost $10 (based on $2 win bet each race). We are still in the minus earning column at -$34.80 going into this weekend and we will try once again to bring that number down more. We start off the weekend at Maywood Park in Chicago Friday for the Windy City Pace and Galt Stakes, then take a break on Saturday and come back Sunday with the eight Matron Stakes finals at Dover Downs. Should be some great racing. $110,000 Galt Stakes 3YO Colt Trot 7th race Friday, Maywood Park – Very tough call here. Lindy’s True Grit is coming off a big score in his last start and Yonkers Trot winner Dewycolorintheline shows he can win on a half mile track but I am going with a mild long shot here. King Mufasa has had an incredible season with $233,000 bankrolled and 14 wins in 17 starts, all in the midwest. He broke two starts back at Maywood and still rallied for second. I can see him going to the front and not being caught. $176,000 the Windy City Pace 3YO Colts 9th race Friday, Maywood Park – No question that Lucan Hanover is the horse to beat in here. Three starts back he won a division of the Messenger at Yonkers in 1:52.3 and a repeat effort like that should enable him to lead from start to finish for Casie Coleman Stable. $164,250 Matron Stakes Final 3YO Filly Trot 1st race Sunday, Dover Downs – After returning to her winning ways last week with an easy 1:54 triumph in the Matron Preview, Ma Chere Hall should have little trouble beating this same group again. She has a better inside post and should wire the field with ease. $154,575 Matron Stakes Final 2YO Colt Pace 2nd race Sunday, Dover Downs – Very well matched race here. Can make a case for half the starters having a shot in winning. McWicked may have been second last week to All Bets Off, but the winner drew the outside post so I see McWicked turning the tables in his favor for the big money. $166,650 Matron Stakes Final 2YO Colt Trot 3rd race Sunday, Dover Downs – Last week Nuncio won his elimination division in 1:55.2, just as Well Built did, but he just looked so much stronger and faster despite identical times. Has the gate speed to leave right on and either cut the mile or get great cover to score from again. $132,525 Matron Stakes Final 2YO Filly Pace 5th race Sunday, Dover Downs – Once again another well matched field that is making it tough to pick a winner. Decided to go with Ali Blue despite her outside post. She may have won in a photo last week but did show true grit in holding on to the lead down the stretch. $140,100 Matron Stakes Final 2YO Filly Trot 9th race Sunday, Dover Downs – We may just be watching the leading contender to be the freshman filly trotter of the year. Shake It Cerry was hot earlier this season and has now returned with a flury. She wired the field with ease last week, is going for her fourth straight win and looks to be the chalk play of the night. $160,388 Matron Stakes Final 3YO Colt Pace 10th race Sunday, Dover Downs – After a much needed rest, Vegas Vacation should be primed for a big effort in here. And with Sunshine Beach having to start outside of him, I think that Vegas Vacation can return to his winning ways from back in September. $130,650 Matron Stakes Final 3YO Filly Pace 11th race Sunday, Dover Downs – Now a winner in 10 of her 17 starts this year, Shebestingin gave notice last week that she was primed and in tip top shape with her 1:51.2 victory. Provided she minds her manner behind the starting gate she should have no trouble beating this group again. $153,225 Matron Stakes Final 3YO Colt Trot 13th race Sunday, Dover Downs – It was great to see Smilin Eli back to winning form last week with his 1:53.1 victory in the Matron Preview. He draws the same post three again and I expect he will just go right out to the lead like last week and wire the field.
When trainer-driver Tom Harmer speaks of his homebred filly Pertty Music, he does so with the beaming pride of a proud parent. And with good reason. Harmer not only bred, trains and owns the 3-year-old brown lass, but he also owned, trained, and drove the filly’s parents, Jereme’s Jet and My Metallica. Harmer conditioned and drove Jereme’s Jet to earn $1,519,321 from 35 starts, with 16 wins, five seconds and one third. The bay stallion took a time trial mark of 1:47 at Lexington’s Red Mile on Sept. 9, 2007. Harmer also bred, trained and owns My Metallica, a daughter of Partyatartsplace who earned $287,851 from 13 wins, ten seconds and nine thirds in 60 career starts. She took a mark of p, 3, 1:51.1 en route to winning a $40,000 Hanover Stake by nearly nine lengths on Aug. 2, 2006. Even more unique is the story behind the pairing of Jereme’s Jet and My Metallica that produced Pertty Music, who’ll go postward in Friday’s $73,000 Cinderella Stake for sophomore pacing fillies. On Sept. 17, 2005, My Metallica entered the Balmoral Park winner’s circle after capturing the $260,000 Orange & Blue Filly Stake in 1:52.3 for driver Tony Morgan. The celebrating Harmer just happened to glance up at a TV at that precise moment, and saw his other charge, Jereme’s Jet, leaving the Mohawk winner’s circle in Canada, after just winning the $840,000 Metro Stake with driver Paul MacDonell in 1:50.4. “I didn’t think about breeding them to each other at that moment, but then later when I thought about, I thought about how cool it was that one was coming in the winner’s circle and the other was leaving at the same time and I told (my wife) Debbie that we just had to breed them someday,” Harmer explained. Another coincidence: Pertty Music is from Jereme’s Jet second crop, and she is also My Metallica’s second foal. “Jereme’s Jet was a trainer’s dream,” Harmer acknowledged. “I don’t think anybody could have messed him up, he was a no brainer. I qualified him and drove him in his first start. He was absolutely gorgeous, and all of his babies are gorgeous, and they’re all good gaited, smart, and pleasant. None of them are mean.” Pertty Music raced ten times as a freshman, earning $24,056. She took a mark of p, 2, 1:56.2 on Aug. 5, 2012 en route to winning a Balmoral overnight for driver Todd Warren. “She was a perfect filly to train down; the kind of filly you dream about. She did everything you asked her to do,” Harmer recalled. “I qualified her at Maywood as a freshman, and then sent her up to Canada to trainer Greg McNair.” Pertty Music began her sophomore campaign by qualifying at Maywood on April 4, winning in 1:57 for driver John DeLong. She won her first two starts in Balmoral overnighters with DeLong at the lines—in 1:53.12 (on April 20) and in a career best 1:52.1 (on April 27), before heading to Canada. “She qualified well and had a couple of good wins before I sent her north to Greg (trainer McNair),” Harmer said. “She won her first start up there for him in 1:53, but after that really didn’t race was well as I was hoping. She’s never had a lameness problem of any kind, but just hasn’t been as good as I thought she’d be.” Pertty Music has won four starts this season in 19 tries, with two seconds and two thirds, with $72,736 added to her coffers this season. Prior to finishing sixth in last Saturday’s $161,000 American National 3-Year-Old Filly Pace at Balmoral, she scored a 1:54 triumph for DeLong at the Crete one-miler in a conditioned test. Lifetime she’s amassed $97,792 from 29 starts. “It’s really exceptional when you’ve raced both the parents of a youngster, and then you get the thrill of being the breeder, because you figured out the right combination,” Harmer admitted. “They, it becomes double-special when they turn out to be something that you’ve trained and driven, and gotten to the races. It’s just a great feeling.” by Kimbery Rinker for Maywood Park
It’s not often that the “star” of your team retires and the squad doesn’t miss a beat. But that’s the case for “Team Leonard” as Fort Silky looks to post his 16th win of the season and lock up a $20,000 bonus when he takes on seven other state-bred pacers in Friday’s (Nov. 15) $30,000 Lester McKeever Stake at Maywood Park. . Fresh off three straight victories against “open” company in the Invitational ranks at Balmoral Park the seven-year-old son of Ft. Apache Hanover enters the McKeever Stake in peak form for trainer Terry Leonard. “I think he’s as good as he’s been at any point in the year,” said driver Casey Leonard who has been the gelding’s regular pilot all year long. “He’s had a couple of weeks off in a few different spots this year and that has really helped to keep him fresh all season long.” Sent to the Leonard barn to start the season by owners John Prentice and Neva Jane Ikeler Fort Silky, who had banked nearly $300,000 going into 2013 season, immediately began to flourish under the care of the Leonard operation. “We knew he was a very good horse from competing against him for the past few years while we had Well To Do Guru racing,” explained Leonard. “From day one he took to our program and he’s only become more and more comfortable with it. He’s a heck of a good eater, he learned to swim and now he’s actually very fond of that and he’s been a good trainer when it comes time to hit the track. He’s as relaxed as can be and he’s just fit in perfectly with us.” Fort Silky enters Friday’s battle sporting an impressive record of 15-11-2 in 31 starts this season with earnings of $239,795. Despite the gaudy totals driver Casey Leonard believes the career winner of $536,939 could have even more money on his card this season if not for some tough racing luck in several starts. “He’s was stuck in the second tier in the Cook County Stake (Leg 1 of this series) and wound up finishing second,” said Leonard who is having the best year of his career with 344 victories through Nov. 13th. “Then in the Egyptian (Leg 2) he wound up on the outside in the 8-hole and I had to blast him out of there. We also had a pretty tough trip while under constant pressure on Super Night and still managed to finish second. Still the numbers he’s put up are pretty impressive.” After taking this series the past three years with their great home-bred Well To Do Guru who was retired earlier this season, the Leonard’s will have a chance pull off the four-peat with Fort Silky who will leave from post position four in Friday’s battle. “I certainly didn’t foresee being in this position after we retired “Guru” earlier this year,” said Leonard. “He was the star of our stable for so long that it’s almost surreal to have this chance again. The year that Fort Silky has put together has been incredible. He’s been a pleasure to drive and to train and to be able to do this for such respected people like Neva and John makes it that much better.” The $20,000 owner’s bonus goes to the horse who accumulates the most points in the three-race series. Here are the current standings heading into Friday’s McKeever Stake. Maywood Park's Illinois Bred Championship Series Point Totals Fort Silky 50 Uncle Smoothie 50 Fox Valley Yukon 50 NJ's Big Deal 20 Sports Fanatic 20 Whirlwind Diplomacy 10 Tom Kelley
November 10, 2013 – Mark McKelvie, winner of the 2012 handicapping contest has been quiet for a while in HANA Harness’ 2013 Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge sponsored by the Hambletonian Society, Chicago Harness, IHHA, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs showed triple digit profits at Hoosier Park and Vernon Downs on Friday evening, but when he wakes up, he wakes up as McKelvie scored an eye opening net profit of $1,000.40 on the American National card at Balmoral Park Saturday evening (November 9). (Editor’s Note: The contest uses USTA-posted prices. If using out of state prices, McKelvie would have had a net profit of $1,011.30). As a result of his performance, McKelvie moves into 7th place. Overall contest leader, Richard Scott remains on top despite his losing performance this week, showing an overall net profit of $106.75, leading the pack by $574.10. As we see from McKelvie’s performance this week, no position is solidified with seven contest dates remaining. Here are the contest standings at the conclusion of action on November 9, 2013. Pos Handicapper Week Gain Net Profit Behind Last Pos Days Missed 1st Richard Scott ($186.00) $106.75 1st 6 2nd Earl Paulson $28.50 ($467.35) ($574.10) 3rd 7 3rd Rusty Nash ($166.40) ($616.77) ($723.52) 2nd 4 4th Dennis O'Hara $52.50 ($972.95) ($1,079.70) 6th 2 5th Ann Stepien ($23.50) ($1,018.10) ($1,124.85) 5th 1 6th Garnet Barnsdale ($240.00) ($1,036.24) ($1,142.99) 4th 9 7th Mark McKelvie $1,000.40 ($1,719.79) ($1,826.54) 9th 8 8th Gordon Waterstone ($92.00) ($2,063.80) ($2,170.55) 7th 4 9th Sally Hinckley ($151.90) ($2,517.60) ($2,624.35) 8th 0 10th Ray Garnett ($240.00) ($3,098.93) ($3,205.68) 10th 3 Ten grace days permitted. After ten days, there is a penalty of $30 per race. Key Hits Mark McKelvie - $30 Win wager in the American-National for 2yo pacing colts paid $237.00, $15 Exacta Partial Wheel ($30 total) in the American-Nation for 3yo trotting colts paid $843.00, $30 Win ticket in the American-National for 3yo pacing fillies paid $117.00; Dennis O’Hara - $15 Trifecta Partial Wheel ($30) in the American-National for 3yo pacing colts paid $250.50; Earl Paulson - $15 Exacta Box ($30) in the American-National for 3yo pacing fillies paid $142.50, $15 Exacta Box ($30) in the American National pace for 4yos & up paid $126.00; Anne Stepien - $15 Exacta Box ($30) in the American-National pace for 4yos & up paid $126.00. Contest Schedule This Week Friday, November 15, 2013 – Maywood Park - $180,000(Est.) Windy City Pace - 3yo Open; $73,000(Est.) The Cinderella – 3yo fillies pacers; $110,000(Est.) The Galt – 3yo Open Trot; $89,000(Est.) The Abe Lincoln – 2yo Open Trot Sunday, November 17, 2013 – Dover Downs - $165,000(Est.) The Matron – 2yo colt and gelding pace; $149,000(Est.) The Matron – 3yo filly trot; $140,000(Est.) The Matron - 3yo colt and gelding trot; $173,000(Est.) The Matron – 3yo colt and gelding pace; $124,000(Est.) The Matron – 2yo filly trot; $160,000(Est.) The Matron – 2yo filly pace; $159,000(Est.) The Matron – 2yo colt and gelding trot; $123,000(Est.) The Matron – 3yo filly pace by Allan Schott for HANA
Thursday’s $12,000 Life’s A Holiday Stake at Maywood Stake turned into quite a nail biter for chalk players as the heavily favored entry of Skyline Road and King Mufasa both made breaks during the mile. The 1-9 favorites still made good on their favored status though with Skyline Road prevailing by 3 ¼ lengths in 2:00.4 over a sloppy track. After speeding to the top from post position eight King Mufasa (Mike Oosting) appeared to take a bad step just after leading the field through an opening quarter in 28.0. After making a nasty break, Oosting did a magnificent job of gathering up the division leader on the turn but not before they had dropped all the way back to seventh as Riet’s Kid (Dean Magee) led the field through a half in 59.2. Circling around rivals as the field moved onto the backstretch the Mike Brink trainee, who had won 14 of 15 starts this season, was back in front as the field hit the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:30.2. Meanwhile, entry mate Skyline Road and driver Casey Leonard, who made a break early in the race and was last at the opening call, was circling up from th eback of the pack picking off one rival after another as he moved up to challenge as the field moved into the final turn. In full flight as the diagonally gaited sophomores moved around the final turn Skyline Road trotted right by his entrymate as the field straightened for the money, eventually drawing away for his fourth win of the season. King Mufasa turned in an unbelievable effort to finish in the runner-up role while Mack’s Gold Band (John De Long) was third. Sent off at odds of 1-9 the overwhelming favorites returned $2.20 & $2.10. There was no show wagering on the race. With the win Skyline Road now sports a record of 4-3-2 in 17 starts this season with earnings of $54,775 for “Bill” Wright, Geis Enterprise and the Ervin Miller Stable. by Tom Kelley for Maywood Park