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In 2016 the publisher of Roosevelt Raceway Where It All Began, Meadow Skipper The Untold Story, Murray Brown Book Full and Closed, and Rose Runners the Chronicles of the Kentucky Derby Winners, closed their doors and went out business. Due to their business practices on May 4, 2017 this publisher was arrested for multiple felonies and on December 18, 2018 they plea-bargained and plead guilty to 38 felonies. There was a record of over 2,200 criminal complaints filed against them with the Oklahoma State Attorney Generals office. During this time the above mentioned books were all in limbo, still showing on Amazon but all out of print. With the combined efforts of Bob Marks, Vicki Howard, Murray Brown, Billy Haughton and Freddie Hudson the books were able to be republished through Freddie Hudson's Amazon Author account. The newly republished books (Murray Brown, Roosevelt Raceway and Meadow Skipper) have all made it to Amazons best sellers list in the category of Horse Racing. We expect Rose Runners to be on that list shorty, it;s release date was today. All of the books can be viewed and redirected to their Amazon pages at the link below. https://rrtrotting.com/books   From the United States Harness Racing Alumni Association

CHESTER PA - Photobombr Hanover never looked back from his outside post six in taking the final harness racing event in the John Simpson Sr. stakes series, the $74,000 two-year-old colt pace, on Sunday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia, winning in a lifetime best 1:52.4.   Hall of Fame driver David Miller hustled the freshman to the top in 27, then took a 30 second breather in the second quarter. Photobombr had to step it back up to 27.3 down the back to hold off a huge rush by first-over Point Somewherelse, did so successfully, and then kept pocketsitting Maconupwiththedragon at bay by 1¼ lengths through the lane with a final split of 28.1, with Pointsomewherelse another length back in third. Tom Fanning trains the four-time seasonal winner, bred by Hanover Shoe Farms (which Simpson Sr. helped grow and prosper for so many years), who increased his earnings just over the $80,000 mark, for owners Howard Taylor and Susan Kajfasz. The son of Somebeachsomewhere-Pilgrim's Witchie has a pedigree to show even more improvement, as his dam was one of four to win $200,000 out of six foals by his second dam Witchtree (who herself won $199,000+), and his fourth dam is the double-gaited world champion Countess Adios , whose brother has also had some impact on the breed - Meadow Skipper.   Pennsylvania Harness Horsemen's Association

Boca Raton, FL - Meadow Skipper will be at the Harrisburg, PA Standardbred Yearling Sales starting on Sunday, November 1. At least in spirit and bloodlines he will be! Meadow Skipper, the untold story, written by Victoria Howard and Bob Marks, is an unofficial biography of the world champion harness racing horse, who singlehandedly changed the direction of an entire breed of animal. Every pacing horse sold at the upcoming sale can trace their bloodlines to Meadow Skipper, who passed away in 1982. The book will be available at the table area throughout the sale in Harrisburg and co-author Bob Marks will be there to autograph copies. Meadow Skipper, the untold story, is an unforgettable saga of an equine Rocky Balboa, who overcame insurmountable odds to emerge as harness racing's greatest progenitor since Adam. This story is relayed in a unique way to authors Howard and Marks -- straight from the horse's mouth as only he could tell it. "The book is not just for equine lovers," said author Victoria M. Howard, "but also for sports enthusiasts and those who cherish the rags-to-riches underdogs who overcome challenges at any cost. It reads like a breathtaking feel-good roller-coaster ride, and in the end, you too will believe!" Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, from the publisher at www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore, or by visiting barnesandnoble.com or amazon.com. "I encourage everyone coming to the Harrisburg sale to stop by and see me," Marks said, "We can talk about the book and about Meadow Skipper as I saw him race throughout most of his career. The book will make the perfect holiday present for the equine lover in your family." By Steve Wolf

Boca Raton, Fla. - Authors Victoria M. Howard and Bob Marks have announced that their recently released book, Meadow Skipper, the untold story, has been released nationwide. The book is an unofficial biography of a champion Standardbred race horse, who singlehandedly changed the direction of an entire breed of animal. Meadow Skipper, the untold story, is an unforgettable saga of an equine Rocky Balboa, who overcame insurmountable odds to emerge as harness racing's greatest progenitor since Adam. This story is relayed in a unique way to authors Howard and Marks -- straight from the horse's mouth as only he could tell it. "The book is not just for equine lovers," said author Victoria M. Howard, "but also for sports enthusiasts and those who cherish the rags-to-riches underdogs who overcome challenges at any cost. It reads like a breathtaking feel-good roller-coaster ride, and in the end, you too will believe!" Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, from the publisher at www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore, or by visiting barnesandnoble.com or amazon.com. "We just found out that our book is currently ranked the #2 featured book at Tate Publishing this season," Howard said. "I think it would make a great holiday present for any equine, animal or sports enthusiast." Howard is an internationally published author. Her book, Why Women Love Bad Boys, is now sold in 15 countries. Howard, who has trained and raced Standardbred horses, is the co-author of Roosevelt Raceway: Where It All Began and 12 other books. She also writes a relationship column called Dear Victoria in a South Florida paper. In 2011, she was awarded VIP Woman of the Year by Who's Who Women Worldwide. She lives in Boca Raton, Florida, with her dog, Max. Marks, who was recently inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame, has been a long time racing handicapper, pedigree expert and writer. He has also bred and merchandised thousands of Standardbred horses throughout his career. He is also a published poet, lyricist and broadcaster. By Steve Wolf

Lexington, KY - While the first 108 yearling buyers at the upcoming Lexington Select Yearling Sale may not be able to purchase a son or daughter of the world champion stallion Meadow Skipper, they will get the next best thing. A copy of the newly released book, Meadow Skipper, The Untold Story. The unofficial autobiography on the great Meadow Skipper, written by Victoria M. Howard and Bob Marks, will be given to the first 108 yearling buyers at the prestigious sale, compliments of the Lexington Select Yearling Sale Company. The sale begins Monday, October 5 at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion in Lexington. Authors Howard and Marks will be at the sale the entire week starting Sunday at the sale preview day. Their booth will be located next to the Hunterdon Farms consignment and they will autograph each yearling buyers copy. "This is a great thing that the co-sales managers, David Reid and Randy Manges are doing," said co-author Bob Marks. "Both Victoria and I will be at the sale starting this Sunday and signing the books for everyone that gets one." Meadow Skipper, The Untold Story, is an unofficial autobiography of the historical life story of the Standardbred world champion pacer, Meadow Skipper, as told in a unique fashion with commentary by the horse himself. The book features many action photographs of Meadow Skipper during his racing career and his life as the most prominent stallion in the history of the sport since Rysdyk's Hambletonian back in the 1850's. Tate Publishing has issued Meadow Skipper, The Untold Story, and the book can be purchased on their website at https://www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w=978-1-68187-954-3. The actual Lexington Yearling Sales catalog has been mailed, and it's available for download on the Equineline app and website, and videos have been posted. For more information or interview requests please contact Steven Wolf, publicist, at (954) 654-3757 or send an email to stevenwolf1956@gmail.com. by Steven Wolf  

Meadow Skipper "The Untold Story" by Victoria M. Howard and Bob Marks is presented as an unofficial autobiography--as told to the two authors. That's right: Skipper himself gives us his first person perspective on the highs and lows of being an excellent pacer and the most influential sire in the modern era. The authors have steered clear of the traditional narrative style employed by Don Evans in Big Bum, Nevele Pride Speed N Spirit and Super Bird; and Marie Hill in her biography of Adios and Ron Bisman in his chronicle of the life and exploits of Cardigan Bay. All of these books were published forty or more years ago: Marks and Howard chose to add an anthropomorphic twist. The breadth of information imparted on Skipper's racing and breeding career, as well as the contributions, or lack thereof, of all of his prominent heirs is leaps and bounds ahead of what has been given in other equine biographies, yet, the literary devices employed throughout the book make all that data very easy to digest. There's all the inside baseball the seasoned fan would want, but the sport's arcane lexicon that might leave general readers flummoxed is either avoided entirely or explained away. Skipper is presented throughout as a kind of Rocky Balboa figure. He was an awkward, lazy colt who came very close to being gelded. A confirmed mama's boy, he didn't take kindly to being separated from Countess Vivian. Nor was he pleased about being rigged and asked for speed. He spends a good part of the book trying to rationalize away his reputation as a sulker. The iconic stallion played second fiddle to the great Overtrick on the racetrack, and it took breeders several years to realize Skipper was a sire worthy of quality mares, or, any mares at all, for that matter. It was a long, arduous journey to the top of the heap. Meadow Skipper dedicates the book to three men: Joe Lighthill, who first used his whip to wake him out of his race day lethargy; Norman Woolworth, who showed $150,000 worth of faith in the unproven colt; and Earle Avery, who never saw a ground saving rail trip he liked. The first thirteen chapters detail Skipper's racing career; the next five examine his sixteen year stint at stud, as well as the contributions of his offspring; and the final chapter is a flashback on his life, delivered as he crosses over to the other side after suffering a heart attack in his paddock at Stoner Creek Stud. The authors state at the outset that the book is a mix of fiction and nonfiction. Magic realism marries harness racing. The first thing that came to mind was Marks' Race of the Decade series that was published in Hub Rail during the 1970's. Skipper's primary rival throughout the racing chapters is Overtrick, who fell to our hero in the Cane, but beat Skipper more often than not, including in the Messenger and Jug. Marks was present for many of these races and is able to provide an informed firsthand account, buttressed by the omnipresent wry commentary of Meadow Skipper himself. Walter R Brooks, who created Mister Ed and other talking animals in a series of short stories he penned seventy-five years ago, has nothing on Howard and Marks: That Skipper is a funny fella. Skipper's "love interest" throughout is Laughing Girl, the dam of his near clone and premier siring son, Most Happy Fella. She passed after a pasture accident at age nine, and our boy is devastated when he gets the word. Marks knows the sons and daughters of Meadow Skipper better than anyone; he knows which ones were producers, and to what level, and which ones failed to live up to their lineage and race records. These chapters are crack for pedigree junkies, as sons, grandsons and great grandsons are examined and graded one at a time, in detail. From modern day progenitors, like No Nukes and Cam Fella, to the wildly successful Albatross, who failed to extend, to abject failures like Ralph Hanover, Computer, Genghis Khan and Jade Prince; it's all there. The same sort of care goes into examining Meadow Skipper's impact on the breed from a bottom line perspective. Marks views Matt's Scooter and Call For Rain as Skipper's finest credits as a broodmare sire. The former is characterized as a successful, though not great, sire, while the double Breeders Crown winner by Storm Damage is labeled an abject failure at stud. Detailed accounts of the influence of Meadow Skipper on the pedigrees of present day stars the likes of McWicked, Artspeak, Colors A Virgin, JK She'saldy, Sweet Lou, Anndrovette and Foiled Again follows. We learn that Meadow Skipper is the only Standardbred ever embalmed in Kentucky, and that Skipper rests between Count Fleet, Crown Champ and the headstone of Rodney. The physical Skipper, that is. His spirit is frolicking on the other side with Laughing Girl. Howard knows plenty about harness racing and Marks is a skilled writer, who has always lived outside the box with his annual yearling prognostications and the like. It's impossible to figure out just who is responsible for what in Meadow Skipper "The Untold Story," but it's the best book about the sport I've ever read. The book is currently only available from the publisher in paperback or ereader form by clicking here.  Joe FitzGerald has been an avid harness racing fan and historian for the last half-century. He writes a weekly blog for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/.

Boca Raton, FL - August 27, 2015 - Meadow Skipper, The Untold Story, written by equine professionals Victoria M. Howard and Bob Marks, has been pre-released. Meadow Skipper, The Untold Story, is an unofficial autobiography of the historical life story of the Standardbred world champion pacer, Meadow Skipper, as told in a unique fashion with commentary by the horse himself. The book features many action photographs of Meadow Skipper during his racing career and his life as the most prominent stallion in the history of the sport since Rysdyk's Hambletonian back in the 1850's. The novel follows Meadow Skipper from his birth in 1960 through his intense racing career with trainer/driver Earle Avery. Meadow Skipper was a world or seasonal champion during each year that he raced. Once retired to stud duty, he went on to sired more than 1,700 progeny and as a stud, his progeny earned more than $66 million. Some of his world champion foals include Albatross, Most Happy Fella, Ralph Hanover, Handle With Care, Naughty But Nice, Genghis Khan, Chairmanoftheboard and Governor Skipper, just to name a few of the nearly countless top horses he bred. Published by Tate Publishing, the book is now available only through the publisher at https://www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w=978-1-68187-954-3. It will be sold throughout bookstores nationwide beginning in September. Victoria M. Howard has raised, bred and raced harness horses for over 40 years. Howard has published 12 books. Her prior equine novels include Roosevelt Raceway; Where it all began and a children's book, The Adventures of Max & Molly. Bob Marks is a longtime marketing head of Perretti Farms in New Jersey and a noted equine writer, Standardbred pedigree expert and professional handicapper. He was recently inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in July, 2015. This is his first novel. A book signing tour is set to begin on Sunday, October 4 at the Lexington Select Yearling Sales in Lexington, KY. For more information or interview requests please contact Steven Wolf, publicist, at (954) 654-3757 or send an email to stevenwolf1956@gmail.com. by Steven Wolf

Anna Sewell’s 1877 novel Black Beauty is one of the most popular books of all time. The modern day film adaptations were also wildly successful. Aside from energizing the animal welfare movement in nineteenth century England, the story inspired worldwide love for a black stallion. In the Standardbred world, where folks often split hairs when it comes to distinguishing colors, black is an outlier. Blacks don’t represent a large percentage of trotters and pacers, but have played a key role in the development of the breed, nonetheless. The most important sire of the modern era is Meadow Skipper. He was brown, but his daddy, Hall of Famer Dale Frost, was black. He won the Geers and Meadow Lands Farm Stake at two and earned more than $200,000. But this black stallion, who was handled by Delvin Miller and Jimmy Arthur, made himself an immortal by siring Meadow Skipper. Other productive sons were Fulla Napoleon, Mountain Skipper and Goodnuff. Tar Heel, a jet black stallion, came along three years earlier than Dale Frost. Lawrence Sheppard paid a record $125,000 for the Little Brown Jug winner as a three year-old. And unlike Dale Frost, who passed after breaking his leg at age 17, and left behind a small number of offspring, Tar Heel was a siring machine: Hanover got 27 crops out of him. Many of his get were homely as sin and sour as a lemon, but they knew how to win races. His sons did not sire on; he had no Skipper. However, his legacy on the track is deep. Horse of the Year at two, three and four, Laverne Hanover, won the Fox, Little Brown Jug and Tattersalls Pace. He won 61 of 98 starts. The full brothers, Nansemond and Isle Of Wight, beat the mighty Albatross a combined eight times. And the former won the Jug. Keystone Pat, Otaro Hanover, Tar Boy and Sunnie Tar are a few of the others. And the coal black giant, Tarquinius, who took over the FFA division for a stretch in 1964, was another standout. The Tar Heels changed over time; there’s a striking difference between Tarquinius, who was out of a Corporal Lee mare, and Laverne and Nansemond, both of whom were out of Adios mares. Bob Marks points out that the son of Billy Direct got a steady diet of trotting mares prior to the success of Steady Beau and Sly Yankee, while the Adios mares that followed gave him smaller, better gaited individuals. Tar Heel’s daughters were responsible for the Triple Crown winner, Ralph Hanover, as well as Praised Dignity, In The Pocket, Colt Fortysix and Forrest Skipper. Tar Heel mares produced the top performer for most of the sires they were bred to. Adios’s top son, Bret Hanover; Dancer Hanover’s best, Romeo Hanover; and Columbia George’s best, Le Baron Rouge, are three examples. Widower Creed was a top notch black FFA pacer for Howard Beissinger in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The son of Jimmy Creed did not distinguish himself as a sire, but he did produce Miss Creedabelle, the dam of Bret’s nemesis, Adios Vic. Continentalvictory, the brilliant daughter of Valley Victory, who passed three months ago at age 22, was another black star. The last filly to win the Hambletonian, the Hall of Famer, earned $1.6 million, and took the Yonkers Trot and World Trotting Derby. Scotland, the progenitor of Muscle Hill, via Rodney, Speedy Scot, Speedy Crown etc., was a black horse. As was his son Hoot Mon and that one’s daughter Hoot Song, the filly who beat the boys in the 1957 Yonkers Trot and finished second behind Hickory Smoke in the Hambletonian. Caleb, a black son of Hoot Mon, was second in the 1961 Hambletonian. Hoot Mon, who is one of three black horses to win the Hambletonian—Park Avenue Joe and Continentalvictory being the others—was the sire of Hambletonian winners AC’s Viking and Blaze Hanover, as well as Capetown, the sire of Overcall, and Thankful, the dam of Nevele Pride. Earl Laird, Jimmy Cruise’s FFA project, who was chronically lame and didn’t race until age six, was black. The brave trotter won the Maple Leaf Classic, United Nations Trot and the American Classic. Flak Bait, a high-end son of Speedy Somolli, who took the 1985 Kentucky Futurity, was black. And Natural Herbie, who surprised everyone in last year’s International Trot Preview, and also won the Vincennes and Chip Noble, is also black. The 1953 Horse of the Year, world record holder Hi Los Forbes, was black. As is Rock n Roll Heaven’s sophomore filly, Band Of Angels. There are only three mainstream black sires in North America: hitting the reset button in Ontario, after an unsuccessful run in New York as a four year-old, Archangel, sold out right away up North. Shadow Play was very successful in the Ontario Sire Stakes with his first crop, but ran up against Sportswriter last year; and Winning Mister stood in PA in 2013, made a four race comeback in the fall of that year, and is now apparently permanently retired to stud. The first two will certainly spread that black around. Our world gets more bay and brown every day. We need more ebony, more onyx, and more black beauty. (Joe FitzGerald has been an avid harness racing fan and historian for the last half-century. He writes a weekly blog for  http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/. Joe’s commentary reflects his own views and not that of Harnesslink)

Cardigan Bay was harness racing’s first superstar pacer to come to North American from New Zealand, where he was beloved in the early 1960s. Among his major victories 'Down Under' are the 1963 New Zealand Cup when he started 54 yards behind the field and the Auckland Cup where he was given a 78 yard handicap. The same year he also captured Australia’s Inter Dominion Pacing Championship. One of the gelding's most memorable wins was in a major race at Addington Raceway in Christchurch, New Zealand while the grandstand as on fire. A photo of that race is considered to be one of the great iconic images of horse racing. Cardigan Bay came to the United States at the advanced age of eight on a "racing lease" and joined the stable of National Hall of Famer Stanley Dancer for a payment of $125,000, despite the fact he had only $US137,000 in earnings. Cardigan Bay was also "down on the hip" from a severe injury he suffered earlier in New Zealand. Cardigan Bay would be dominant in the U.S.A. for three years, beating the absolute best pacers in the country on a regular basis. He became the only horse to have defeated the three future Hall of Fame horses of that era— Bret Hanover, Overtrick and Meadow Skipper. In 1964, Overtick and Cardigan Bay tangled in the Dan Patch Pace and the Dan Patch Encore. Cardigan Bay prevailed by the shortest of noses in the Dan Patch, but Overtrick got his revenge in the Encore. Cardy’s most famous victory in the US came in the Pace of the Century against the great Bret Hanover in 1966. Cardigan Bay and Dancer proved best before a jammed-pack Yonkers crowd of 45,000. Bret Hanover would avenge that setback when the two great pacers met again in the "Revenge Pace."  In 1968 at the age of 12, Cardy, near the end of his career, needed about $85,000 in his quest to become the first Standardbred to win $1million - a feat he accomplished at Freehold in his last start. A month after he had reached the million dollar mark, the horse was honored at Yonkers on Cardigan Bay Day. The next evening he walked a long red carpet with Dancer and made his appearance on the old popular Ed Sullivan TV show. Dancer then retired possibly the most well-known racehorse ever to come from New Zealand. Cardigan Bay finished his racing career with 80 victories, 25 seconds and 22 thirds from 154 starts and was named the U.S. Pacer of the Year in 1965 and 1968. He was then returned to New Zealand with great fanfare and lived his retirement in luxury for nearly 20 years until his death at age 32. When Cardy passed away Dancer reflected on the horse’s final year of racing and said: “At the end he was going on heart alone . . . what a mighty heart in must have been.” In 1970 the New Zealand Post Office issued a postage stamp to recognize the achievements of Cardinal Bay. 1968 Provincial Cup _ Windsor Raceway It's two straight for Dancer and Cardigan Bay, harness racing's first $1 million earning horse. The victory allows Cardigan Bay to break Bret Hanover's record for career earnings. Jesta Hill is second, the highest finish in Cup history by a mare and Dancing David, original winner of the Cup, is third. By Mike Paradise

The bottom line on stallion ads is to drum up business, of course, but what qualities and accomplishments a given farm highlights or ignores in these ads is always of interest. What they choose to say and not say tells the tale. Norman Woolworth and David Johnston’s Stoner Creek Stud always embraced the understated approach. In 1971 ads for Meadow Skipper, they simply noted that Most Happy Fella, from his first crop, had been voted Pacer of the Year while two-year-old Albatross had won his division. Skipper stood for $5,000 at that time. Eight years later, when it was obvious that he was the King and he was standing for $30,000, they simply printed “The Ultimate Sire” over Meadow Skipper’s name. A similar approach was taken by JEFs Standardbred Country Club  when they stood grandson Cam Fella in New Jersey for $25,000 16 years later. “The Pacing Machine” said it all. A more hyperbolic approach was taken by Team Finder/Guida with Niatross. In a 1987 ad the former was described in bold type as “The most prolific pacing stallion in the world today.” Prolific in this case describes numbers of 2:00 and 1:53 or faster performers from the first three crops of the great pacer. The ad goes on to state that “Niatross is the superior stallion of all time.” He was standing for $40,000. Unfortunately, like too many from that line, he started off good but fell off sharply after the first few crops. Nihilator, Semalu Damour, Pershing Square, Smartest Remark, Barberry Spur and Caressable all came early, but pretty soon the well went dry. Barberry Spur stood at Stoner Creek for $10,000. Ouch! By 1990 Niatross was standing for $7,500 in New Jersey; four years later his fee had dropped to $5,000; five years later he was dead. The superior stallion of all time? I don’t think so. The Finder/Guida syndicate also marketed the Albatross stallion Merger as “the fastest two-year-old pacer in history.” True enough, but another dud. Nihilator, who was syndicated for more than $19 million, was also hyped beyond the realm of possibility. He started out serving a large book of mares at Almahurst for $40,000 a pop and proved to be a disaster. Ted Gewertz was quoted as saying the worst mistake he ever made was breeding to Nihilator. His fee dropped to $35,000, then $25,000. He only sired five full crops before passing prematurely. Bret Hanover was better than any pacer that preceded him. For that reason his first crop sons, none of whom were worth a damn as stallions, were marketed very aggressively. Almahurst advertised High Ideal anywhere and everywhere as the “greatest son of Bret Hanover.” At that point that wasn’t saying much and High Ideal, despite all the support, proved to be a mistake. Flying Bret was another from that first crop who was touted in the pages of every magazine but never amounted to anything. Golden Money Maker was also a failed stallion—in this case by Tar Heel—who was a darling of those selling ad space. Green Speed, who won the 1977 Hambletonian and Yonkers Trot, was touted by Pine Hollow Stud (Finder again) as a horse “Considered by many to be the greatest trotter to ever look through a bridle.” Trainer/driver Bill Haughton is quoted as saying Green Speed was “the greatest trotter I have ever seen.” The son of Speedy Rodney was standing for $5,000, a veritable bargain for the greatest ever. He sired one good horse, the filly Duenna, who won the Hambletonian for Stanley Dancer. Not quite the greatest ever? Later on Haughton was quoted in an ad for Burgomeister as saying, “he could have been the best trotter around.” But he wasn’t and he failed as a stallion. Pine Hollow also screamed that Sonsam’s world record 1:53.2 mile in the Meadowlands Pace was “the greatest performance ever.” Like his paternal brothers, he was good at the beginning but hit the wall early. Lana Lobell’s Alan Leavitt, a novelist in his spare time,  favored long essays that emphasized his personal experience choosing stallions and matching them up with mares. In some cases a full page ad never mentioned the farm’s stallions. In one he proudly proclaimed experience to be superior to a computer program when it comes to assigning mares to stallions. After reading five paragraphs on Icarus Lobell you thought he was talking about Meadow Skipper. Although in the case of Speedy Crown, who was a game changer, ads full of numbers did appear. Fair Winds Farm also took the long-winded approach to advertising stallions like McKinzie Almahurst. Sometimes it’s best to avoid focusing on the stallion being advertised. A case in point is the advertising put forth on behalf of Deweycheatumnhowe. Walnut Hall had a full page ad in a recent edition of Horseman And Fair World with Master Of Law in bold print and a picture of that one winning the Centaur. Dewey, who has bounced from Kentucky to Ontario to New York, is mentioned once in the small print. Ads for track stars that are struggling as stallions, like Art Official, Shark Gesture and Mister Big, are long on racing accomplishments by the stallion and short on details about his progeny. There is a time limit on that: at some point it gets a little weird. Breeding can be a point of emphasis. Shirley’s Beau, the best son of the Hoot Mon stallion Overcall, was advertised as one that “could be the outcross stallion needed in harness breeding.” He wasn’t. Keystone Ore was touted as the “greatest son of Bye Bye Byrd.” He did sire It’s Fritz, one of those fastest that never won anything types. Speaking of pure speed, one obscure stallion was touted as the only son of Steady Star standing in Illinois. Still one too many. Unraced Cobra Almahurst, a $385,000 yearling, was produced by “The Magic of Meadow Skipper.” “He was meant to be a great one and everyone knew it.” All this for $1,000 in Illinois. Lime Time was marketed on the basis of his 95% conception rate. They were slow as can be, but they were a sure bet to pop out. Sundance Skipper, the sire of Carl’s Bird, was “the overnight sensation.” Not exactly. Ideal Society was “The only 2-year-old to beat all multimillion dollar syndicated 2-year-olds in 1981.” Say what? Lew Williams’ speedball Whata Baron did much of his best work in New Jersey and he was widely advertised when he entered the stallion ranks. He may have executed seven sub-1:55 winning miles in less than three months, but he was no sire. The Armstrong Brothers boldly stated and underlined that Armbro Omaha’s “First Crop Defies Comparison.” Even by OSS standards in the late 1970’s that was kind of strong. The son of Airliner was better on the track than he was in the shed. Good ads can give a stallion a boost, but when looked back at from a distance they may raise an eyebrow or two. by Joe FitzGerald for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

It’s beginning to look like Ake Svanstedt’s trotter Sebastian is so superior to the competition that he’s racing only against the clock. There was a time when time was privileged over purse money in the pursuit of assessing a stallion or mare’s suitability for the breeding ranks, but those days are long gone. Bob Marks never had much use for them, although he says he did “use them occasionally to get marks on horses that could never accomplish much in actual races.” Flip through the latest edition of the Breeder’s Book and you’ll find a couple of pacers with time trial marks—Jereme’s Jet and 26-year-old Cambest—and the Indiana stallion Jailhouse Jesse on the diagonal side. How sweet it would be to see Sebastian take to the track during the Red Mile meet with a pair of t-breds or pacers behind him and a jacked-up crowd cheering him home. He’d surely rid us of the 1:50 burden as well as Enough Said and his Colonial Downs asterisk. Fifty years ago just about every premium stallion and mare was measured against the clock at some point. Rodney, Fancy Crown, Most Happy Fella, Scotland, Yankee Lass, Bullet Hanover, Bye Bye Byrd, Dancer Hanover, Cheer Honey, Dayan, Hickory Pride, Elma, Isle Of Wight, Steady Beau and Sampson Direct all carry time trial marks. Some drivers specialized in handling the time trialing horses, while others were good with the prompters. When Adios Butler knocked two ticks off Billy Direct’s 22-year-old mark, which was set the day before Greyhound’s at The Red Mile on October 4, 1960, owner Paige West drove the 4-year-old while Del Miller and trainer/driver Eddie Cobb drove the t-bred prompters. When the 4-year-old Cash Hall went after Pine Chip’s 1:54 world record at Delaware in 2006, John Campbell drove the son of Self Possessed while Dave Palone chased after him with the Real Artist mare, Valentine. Cash Hall annihilated the mark with a 1:51.1 mile. On the trotting side, Greyhound’s TT1:55 ¼ mark, set on September 29, 1938 for Sep Palin, held fast for 31 years, until Nevele Pride dropped it to TT1:54.4 for Stanley Dancer at Indianapolis on Sunday August 31, 1969. Twelve thousand enthusiastic fans were in attendance that day. Coincidentally enough, a longstanding pacing mark of 1:55 was also set at that same Lexington meet in 1938: Billy Direct time trialed free-legged in 1:55 for Vic Fleming on September 28, 1938. That mark remained untouched during the 1940s. Frank Ervin put a 1:57.1 mark on 5-year-old Adios in a time trial when he was offered $500 to break the track record, and four years later another great progenitor, Gene Abbe, time trialed in 2:00.3, also at age five. But it took a race mark of 1:55 from Adios Harry in the American Pacing Derby at Vernon Downs on July 16, 1955, with the owner’s son Luther Lyons in the bike, to match Billy Direct’s mark. Adios Butler undercut the 1:55 standard five years later in the time trial referenced above. That 1:55 barrier was finally shattered. The great Speedy Crown didn’t break any records when he time trialed in 2:01.2 as a freshman in 1970, but after winning just four of eight starts and earning a paltry $2,000, he did prove that good things were on the way. Actually the first significant time trial for trotters in the 1970s came from Arnie Almahurst, a crazy fast son of Speedy Scot, who pretty much won every start he didn’t break stride in. He had little in common with his paternal brother, Speedy Crown, who never broke stride—not ever. Arnie time trialed in 1:57.2 at The Red Mile for Joe O’Brien and became the sixth fastest trotter behind Super Bowl, Nevele Pride, Ayres, Speedy Scot and Speedy Crown. Nine years later his 3-year-old son Arndon trotted the fastest mile ever by a trotter when he hit the wire in TT1:54 for Del Miller at The Red Mile. And twelve years after that Arndon’s 4-year-old son Pine Chip became the world record holder when he time trialed in 1:51 for John Campbell at Lexington. Arndon and his dad both retired as the fastest ever. Another important trotting time trial in the ‘70s was ABC Freight’s TT1:57.1 as a 2-year-old for Joe O’Brien at Hollywood Park in 1976. The sire of Garland Lobell topped Nevele Pride’s 1:58.2 freshman mark and became the fastest 2-year-old trotter ever. ABC set his lifetime mark of 1:56.3 the following year in a time trial. The market for blockbuster trotting time trials pretty much dried up after that, although Cash Hall did crush the half-mile mark with that 1:51.1 mile for John Campbell at Delaware in 2006 that was referenced above. The time trials involving Standardbred trotters under saddle has been less prevalent, nonetheless, it has played a prominent role due to the horses and people involved. In 1940 Greyhound ended his racing career under saddle at Lexington. Frances Dodge rode him to a world record of 2:01 ¾. That mark stood for 54-years, until Preferential and Brooke Nickells broke it in 1994 with a 1:58.2 mile. And six years later the mighty Moni Maker, like Greyhound, ended her career under saddle at The Red Mile. Jockey Julie Krone, with Jimmy Takter and Wally Hennessey following with prompters, trotted in an incredible 1:54.1. In the pacing camp it was up to Bret Hanover to continue the assault on the longstanding 1:55 standard that his paternal brother, Adios Butler, had begun. In early September of 1966, 4-year-old Bret, who was within a few months of being retired, time trialed in 1:54 at Vernon Downs for Frank Ervin with a single prompter chasing him. Five weeks later in Lexington Ervin put the TT1:53.3 mark on the big guy that would serve as his lifetime mark. Dancer preferred to put race marks on Albatross so there are no flashy time trials on Super Bird’s resume. He did become the fastest ever in a race when he won both heats of the Tattersalls Pace at The Red Mile in 1:54.4, topping Adios Harry’s race mark, which Bret had matched. He also won in 1:55.3 at Delaware, matching Adios Butler’s time trial mark and eclipsing Bret’s 1:57 half-mile track race mark. Steady Star, a free-legged son of Steady Beau,  who was a year older than Albatross, cornered the time trial market in that era. At three he circled The Red Mile in 1:54 for Joe O’Brien and the following year, on October 1, 1971, he time trialed in a head turning 1:52. Later on, in 1976, 4-year-old Nero time trialed in 1:55.1 and the following year Warm Breeze was race timed in 1:53.1 at Golden Bear in Sacramento. Two years later Meadow Skipper’s son Falcon Almahurst became the fastest 3-year-old pacer ever with a 1:52.2 time trial at Lexington for Bill Haughton. Only Steady Star had gone faster. Then came the game changer: 3-year-old Niatross’s TT1:49.1 at The Red Mile on Oct 1, 1980. It was the sport’s first sub-1:50 mile and, while it parallels Adios Butler’s breach of the 1:50 point, it was so much more. The closest thing to it was Steady Star going 1:52, but the sleek son of Steady Beau didn’t win a single open stakes race during his career—not so for Niatross. His son Nihilator was later positioned to outdo dad in a time trial at Springfield but the weather didn’t cooperate and he was unable to lower his 1:49.3 race mark in a time trial at DuQuoin.  Matt’s Scooter went after the 1:49.1 mark at The Red Mile in 1988 and knocked four ticks off of it. His 1:48.2 time trial for Mike Lachance established a new world record. Matt’s Scooter beat Niatross’s mark but 5-year-old Cambest blew it out of the water with his 1:46.1 time trial at Springfield. The problem was that he wasn’t tested afterwards and not long after that his 1:52.1 win in the Senior Jug was disqualified due to elevated bicarbonate levels. Cambest was slated to stand at Hanover Shoe Farms but in light of the controversial final chapter of his career they passed. So stick Jimmy Takter and Bernie Noren behind a couple of fast pacers and let’s see if Ake can wheel Sebastian around The Red Mile in a time that will cause the crowd to gasp the way they did for Steady Star’s 1:52 mile and Niatross’s 1:49.1. Speed has always sold in this game; time to pump it up via the time trial. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

All Speed Hanover 3, 1:49.4 ($819,712), one of Cam's Card Shark's most outstanding juvenile performers and winner of the USA 2YO Breeders Crown in 2009, is to do stud duty at Graham and Janine Taylor's Stonegate Farm at Nathalia, 45 kilometres north of Shepparton, Australia. He is at present doing quarantine in Kentucky and is expected to arrive in Australia in mid-August. His service fee for his first season will be $2,500 including GST with discounts for multiple mares and generous breeding packages. All Speed Hanover was unquestionably one of the best two-year-olds of his crop. From seven starts at that age he posted five wins and a placing, amassing $486,950 in stakes. Undoubtedly the highlight of his freshman campaign was his success in the $700,000 Breeders Crown at Woodbine, in which he edged out 2YO of the Year Sportswriter after a titanic stretch duel in 1:52. All Speed Hanover also won a $139,800 division of the Bluegrass Stake and a  $119,350 division of the International Stallion Stake, both in 1:50.6 at Lexington's mile track. He took his record of 1:49.4 at three years, winning an elimination of the North America Cup at Mohawk, while he also captured a heat of the New Jersey Classic before finishing a nose second in the $500,000 Final in 1:49.2. All Speed Hanover added over $160,000 to his bankroll as an aged performer, retiring with $819,712 in career earnings and being race-timed in sub 1:50 on nine occasions. Noel Daley, who trained All Speed Hanover most of his career, said: "At this stage he's the most exciting young pacer I've trained. He had versatility and a great gait. I will certainly be breeding to him 'Down Under'". Meanwhile, Luke McCarthy, who drove on several occasions when based in America, said: "He's the most gifted two-year-old I have driven." An upstanding bay, All Speed Hanover has the breeding background to compliment his obvious racetrack ability. Cam's Card Shark, champion sire in America, where he has sired winners of almost $133 million and has 58 in the 1:50 list, has also made an impact through his sons as sires in Australia and New Zealand. Not only is All Speed Hanover a youthful son of Cam's Card Shark - he was foaled in 2007 - but on his distaff side he can claim equal distinctions. Allamerican Cool (1:54.8), the Stakes-winning dam of All Speed Hanover, has a 100 percent record at stud with nine foals for nine winners including five in 1:55 and three $100,000 winners. They have amassed more than $1.3million in progeny earnings. Furthermore, Allamerican Cool ranks as a half-sister to one of the greatest racemares of all-time in Eternal Camnation 1:49.4, the winner of 47 races, a record $3,748,574 in stakes and a member of the Canadian Hall of Fame. Trilogy Lobell, the third dam of All Speed Hanover, was a half-sister to the Little Brown Jug winner and champion sire Life Sign 1:50.6 ($1.9million) and to the dam of leading sire American Ideal (1:47.8), their dam being Three Diamonds (1:53.2), the USA 2YO and 3YO Filly of the Year and a Hall of Fame immortal. All Speed Hanover is a Most Happy Fella line horse - that which produced Bettor's Delight - from one of the top maternal families in the world, and boasts six strong crosses of the blood of Meadow Skipper. He should prove an ideal outcross to mares boasting Abercrombie, Western Hanover and Direct Scooter blood. By Peter Wharton

With the North American breeding season well underway we will continue with our "A Stallion Review" series highlighting the stallions that are making an impact on the harness racing breeding scene. Today we have produced an in depth review for the outstanding racehorse Artistic Fella who had his first crop race as two-year-olds in 2013 in Canada and in Australia. His second crop of two-year-olds are now racing in Australia. Enjoy the read. BREEDING Artistic Fella is a son of the Cam Fella stallion Pacific Fella who earned $1,064,631 on the racetrack and took a best time of 1:48.4. He has been a successful sire in both North America and Australia with his stock having earned $20,727,656 in North America with three millionaires including No Pan Intended $1,613,180 and Romona Disomma $1,033,475. Pacific Fella is already a sire of sires with No Pan Intended already having passed the $28 million mark in earnings at stud. In Australia Pacific Fella made his mark with stake earnings of $8,100,881 (especially with his fillies) including such smart horses as Ima Spicey Lombo $483,686, Ruby Dazzler $350,767 and That's Mister Ali $312,662. Artistic Fella is from an unraced daughter of Artsplace in Everything's Easy, who has had 13 foals for six winners with four in 1:53 headed by Artistic Fella. Other notable winners include Melissa's Fancy 1:52f, ($473,313) and Easy Big Fella 1:50.4 ($246,764) The grand dam is the very smart No Nukes racemare called Everything Goes who took a record of 1:53 on her way to earning $342,033. She left 12 foals for seven winners with one in 1:53 and two in 1:55 including the talented Everything's Great 1:52.1f ($240,391) who is a full sister to Everything's Easy. The third dam is the Meadow Skipper mare in Easy To Love who left 12 foals for 10 winners with four in 1;53 including the smart Wear My Ring 1:52.4f ($284,258). Easy To Love is a three quarter sister to the great racemare Halcyon ($855,588) and a half sister to two sires who stood down under in Present Laughter ($509,912) and Paulsboro ($231,561). What makes Easy To Love so interesting is not only is she the third dam of Artistic Fella but she is also the second dam of his sire, Pacific Fella. So Artistic Fella is 3x3 to Easy To Love. A half sister to Easy To Love in Expressive Moves was imported into New Zealand and left the very smart race mare in That's Life Lavra ($191,346) who has two foals old enough to race for two very good winners in Neffeli Lavra 1:53.9 (Australia) and the 3yo Bio Marinus 1:58.3 mile rate with six wins from just the 16 starts to date. RACE RECORD Lightly raced at two, Artistic Fella faced the starter just four times at that age for three wins including two heats of the New Jersey Sires Stakes on his way to earning $51,250 and taking a mark of 1:53.3.  At three he faced the starter 18 times for 11 wins and $941,558 in stakes with a best winning time of 1:48.4. His biggest win was undoubtedly in the $1,000,000 Meadowlands Pace. That day he won in 1:48.4 beating a top line up including My Boy David ($1,339,281), Shark Gesture ($2,890,594), Total Truth ($2,105,122) and Western Ace ($1,924,290). Another top effort was his win in the $225,000 Berrys Creek final at The Meadowlands in 1:50.3 running his last quarter in 25.4. At four he raced a further 16 times for 7 wins 2 seconds and 3 thirds for $702,107 in stakes with a record of 1:48.4. His wins included the $540,000 Breeders Crown Final in 1:49.2 and the $200,000 Dan Patch final in 1:49.2. The Breeders Crown that year was an outstanding group of great horses. They included Mister Big, Lis Mara, Boulder Creek, Total Truth, Western Shore and Mypanmar. The nine starters had average earnings of $2,201,344 (can you believe that?) Total stakes earned by this group is a staggering $19,812,103. It was a great, great group!  Stepping out again at five, Artistic Fella raced 14 times for 5 wins, 7 seconds and 1 third for earnings of $945,617 and an improved record of 1:48 flat. He took his record in the $500,000 Ben Franklin Final at Chester. With just a little bit of luck he could have doubled his earnings as he ran second in the $702,000 Canadian Pacing Derby (to Mister Big), the $600,000 Haughton final (to Mister Big), the $532,000 Breeders Crown final (to Mister Big) and the $332,000 US Pacing Championships (to Mister Big). Retired at the end of his five year old campaign, he went to stud with a race record of 52 starts for 26 wins and 14 placings for stakes totaling $2,604,532. He took a best time of 1:48 and broke the 1:50 barrier 21 times during his career. NORTH AMERICAN STUD RECORD Artistic Fella stood in Canada and has made a good start to his siring career with his first crop of two year olds racing in the 2013 season. He made it on to the top twenty list of two year old sires in North America and with the hugely reduced stake money on offer in Canada this has been a good start. He was third on the Canadian based sires list behind Shadow Play and Mach Three and you would expect that like his sire, his progeny would improve markedly at three. His best two performers to date are the fillies Porsche Seelster ($107,647) and Regil Meg ($75,748). Others showing up are Allstar Seelster ($43,433), Concert Artist ($42,852), Titus Seelster ($40,125) while Can Art and Western Fella have looked progressive types.   With just the one crop racing in Canada, Artistic Fella has 98 old enough to race (2yo olds in 2013) for 47 starters, 25 race winners, 1 in 1:53, total stakes to date of $599,900. AUSTRALIAN STUD RECORD Artistic Fella's first crop raced as two year olds in the 2012/2013 season and really made a statement. From a foal crop of 80 he produced the best two year old filly in Australia in Mindarie Priddy, now the best three-year-old in Australia p3.1:53.8 ($226,560) as well as Kimba Bay 1:57.5 ($100,273), Artistic Copper ($87,815) Majestic Amy 1:59.4 ($87,390) and Paua Fella 1:58.8 ($37,849). It was a great debut season and his second crop of just 56 foals has started in the same vein with the outstanding two-year-old colt Artistic Flite winning in sensational fashion the Bathurst Gold Final last week already confirming Artistic Flite as the best two-year-old in Australia this season. All up Artistic Fella has had 15 winners from 35 starters in Australia to date for $709,636 in total stakes. POSITIVES His stock are in the main like their sire, displaying both speed and grit. They are good gaited and his fillies seem as good as his colts. They should continue to improve as they mature as both their sire Artistic Fella and grand sire, Pacific Fella did. Has already shown that he has the ability to leave stock that can race and win at the elite level. NEGATIVES The only knock on him so far in North America is the low money his progeny will race for in Canada where he stands as the program there has almost disappeared. Although he has good size crops in Canada it will be difficult for his progeny to make any money of note and this will be a handicap as a stallion in the eyes of the breeding world.. Down under his problem will be the small crops over the next few seasons of just 67 and 42. He did breed big numbers this year at 220 mares. OVERVIEW A very good start to his siring career especially down under. He has a special three-year-old filly in Mindarie Priddy and a special two-year-old colt in Artistic Flite that could carry him through to when his big crop that has just been bred, starts to race. His fillies run as well as his colts which is a big plus but he does need to improve his overall percentages to cement his spot in the stallion market. It is early in his career and if age does help his stock as many predict, then those percentages may improve to the same level achieved by his competitors. OVER ALL RATING  5.5 out of 10 JC  

I realize that many believe ten-year-old Foiled Again is hands down the greatest harness racing greybeard pacer ever, but that simply isn’t true. Yes, Foiled Again has won more money than any Standardbred ever in North America, but another aging gelding, one who used to hold that title, was better—Cardigan  Bay. Stanley Dancer leased him from Down Under for $100,000 in the winter of 1964, when he was eight. The horse had come close to being destroyed two years earlier when he sustained a serious hip injury. The Hal Tryax gelding had won more than thirty stakes races in his home country, often handicapped as much as 132 yards at the start. His earnings stood at $156,000. He made his first start at Yonkers Raceway in May of that year. It was a winning effort and the following week he faced the great Overtrick in the mile and a half International Pace, losing a neck. Two weeks later he was the 1/2 favorite in the mile and a quarter Good Time Pace and had no trouble beating the likes of Meadow Skipper, Henry T Adios, Rusty Range, Adora’s Dream, Irvin Paul and Country Don. There aren’t any fields of FFA pacers like that today. He then beat the same bunch in the two mile National Championship. Cardigan Bay and Overtrick then traded narrow wins in a pair of match races. In 1965, as a nine-year-old, Cardigan Bay popped splints in his front legs and had surgery on one of those legs. When he got back in early June he crushed a FFA field which included Fly Fly Byrd and Bengazi Hanover, from the outside post. He then won the $50,000 Dan Patch Pace at a mile and a half over Oreti, Cold Front and Fly Fly Byrd. In September he won the $50,000 Bye Bye Byrd at a mile and a half, paying 2.80. Cardigan Bay won three more at Yonkers before going to California where he beat giant slayer Adios Vic in three of four races, after which he returned to New York and won the NPD and the Nassau. Foiled Again has won an impressive 39% of his lifetime starts. Cardigan Bay won 52% of his in North America and Down Under. Each of them are credited with 20 stakes wins in North America, and Foiled Again is still racing. Again, Cardigan Bay also won more than thirty stakes before he was imported. At age ten Cardy started the season with a win at Liberty Bell, and then moved on to Yonkers where he won seven stakes races, including the $100,000 mile and a half International Pace, where he created the largest minus pool ever--$33,000. $143,435 of the $151,750 bet to show was on him. They then barred him from betting in the mile and a quarter Good Time, which he also won over Adora’s Dream and Orbiter N. Adios Vic was then favored in the $50,000 National Pace, only because there was no betting on Cardy. He made three moves and pulled away from Vic in the last quarter. Bret Hanover had never been beaten on a half when Cardy did it in the Pace of the Century at Yonkers. Bret returned the favor a week later at Roosevelt. Cardy capped that season with a win in the $50,000 Nassau Pace at a mile and a half . He paid $3.60. In 1967, when Cardigan Bay was eleven, he started the season by equaling the track record at Windsor in the Provincial Cup—this is in March. Fearing minus pools tracks refused to give him a race. Finally Roosevelt relented and the grizzled gelding crushed Orbiter and Tactile, paying 2.40. He’d been handicapped with the outside post, but the track insisted that from that point on he would also be handicapped by yardage, something that was unheard of in North America. Dancer balked and sat the next one out. Every year there was a new wave of stars graduating to the FFA ranks: Romeo Hanover, True Duane, Bret Hanover and Romulus Hanover. Cardy was showing his age, but was still a formidable opponent, with early season wins in the Valley Forge, provincial Cup and Clark. In May, when he beat True Duane in the Adios Butler at Roosevelt, he paid $10.60, which was the highest payoff on Cardigan Bay to that point in North America. Dancer’s goal was that he become the first ever million dollar winning Standardbred, which he did by winning a $15,000 Pace at Freehold in the fall over little Robin Dundee and Jerry Gauman. This put him in the company of the eight thoroughbreds who had become millionaires. He was retired at Yonkers Raceway on October 12. Cardigan Bay certainly gets extra points for dominating at all distances, from a mile to two-miles. On the other hand, Foiled Again doesn’t have that opportunity so you can’t hold that against him. Cardy was more of a consistent big time player than Foiled Again has been; yes, those were significant triumphs in the TVG and BC last year, but there are too many wins in the Quillen, Molson, IPD, Battle of Lake Erie and Levy, and not enough of the top tier FFA stakes. Cardy won the Good Time twice, the National Championship twice, the Nassau twice, the Provincial Cup twice, the International, the Pace of the Century, the Clark, Dan Patch ….And the fact that he had never paid off at higher than 4/1 during his first four years racing in North America is noteworthy. Foiled has gone off at double digits many times. Cardy was a preeminent force at ten and eleven. We’ll see if Foiled Again also rules in his old age. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

After joint consultation Jim Simpson, President of Hanover Shoe Farms and majority owner Jeff Snyder have decided to retire Cam's Card Shark from active stallion duty at Hanover. "The horse has been good to everybody associated with him from the day he was foaled" Simpson said. "He has now reached the stage in life where it is both difficult and dangerous for him and those around him to mount the phantom mare or even to be collected using a live mare". Cam's Card Shark is a foal of 1991. As a two year old he was lightly campaigned under the guidance of trainer Micky McGivern. His wins at two included the Lou Babic Memorial and two New Jersey Sires Stakes. At 3, he was transferred to the Bill Robinson Stable. He was voted "Horse of the Year 1994". In addition he garnered both O'Brien and Nova awards for Horse of the Year. His wins at three include the $1,000,000 Meadowlands Pace, The North America Cup,  the Art Rooney Memorial, the Adios, the Messenger, the New Jersey Classic and the Miller Memorial. He was syndicated at the end of 1994 and retired with two and three year old earnings of $2,498,204.. He entered the stallion ranks at Hanover's New Jersey Farm in 1995. His stallion accomplishments are many and varied He has sired ten millionaires including five who have earned in excess of two million dollars. He is credited with three Little Brown Jug winners and two winners of The Meadowlands Pace.His most renowned performers have been Shark Gesture, Bettors Delight, Four Starzzz Shark, Royalflush Hanover, Holborn Hanover, Roll With Joe, Village Jolt and Million Dollar Cam. Of special note is that his son Bettors Delight is the fifth great stallion from a paternal line that follows from Meadow Skipper, through Most Happy Fella, to Cam Fella, to Cams Card Shark and now Bettors Delight. This is a feat unprecedented in both Standardbred and Thoroughbred breeding. Its quite possible that the line will be extended through his grandson Betterthancheddar. Snyder said that Cams Card Shark will live out his remaining days "which I hope will be many" at Hanover Shoe Farms. From Hanover Shoe Farms        

North America's top percentage harness racing driver in 2013 has been named the inaugural winner of the Earl Avery Award. Gilles Barrieau, the perennial New Brunswick driving champion and leading UDRS driver in North America last year with a phenomenal .420 average, edged out Woodstock, N.B. native Ivan Davies in voting for the award by industry leaders in New Brunswick. Janet Stevenson Davis, Dale Spence, Chris Davies and his horse, Dusty Lane Oscar, and Philip 'Bo' Sowers were also nominated. "I'm really honoured to win this award," said Barrieau, who maintains a large stable at Exhibition Park Raceway in Saint John, N.B. "Earl Avery was an outstanding horseman and just to hear that I was nominated had already been a special moment for me. My father [Alfred] actually worked for him when he was racing in the United States so I thought that was interesting connection. "This award is a fitting tribute to Earl Avery himself and a great addition for the harness racing industry in New Brunswick." Earl Avery was a native of Knowlesville, N.B. who later moved to Woodstock to begin a legendary career in the sport back in the early 1920’s. He was the first member of the harness racing fraternity to be inducted into the New Brunswick Sports Hall of Fame in 1976; the normal five-year waiting period after retirement being waived for the much-respected Avery. Avery is the only horseman from New Brunswick to ever be elected to Horse Racing Hall of Fames in both Canada and the United States. He was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 1977 and later the same year became the 25th person to be elected to the Living Hall of Fame of the Trotters in Goshen, New York. It was a fitting culmination of a career that saw him win more than 4,000 races and $3.5 million in career earnings and establishing nine world records. During his career, Avery became associated with arguably the greatest pacing horse in the history of harness racing when he convinced owner Norman Woolworth to purchase Meadow Skipper 50 years ago. Meadow Skipper went on to become a world champion race horse for Avery, pacing Lexington, Kentucky’s famed Red Mile in 1:55.1 in October 1963. He later developed into one of the most prolific stallions of the 20th century and his influences on breeding continue to be felt today. “This new award creates an opportunity to bring recognition to outstanding harness racing achievements in New Brunswick while also honouring an industry pioneer,” said Brent Briggs, administrator of the Earl Avery Award. “Besides being an outstanding horseman, Earl Avery was also a great ambassador of the New Brunswick industry for over 50 years. "I think the voting panel made an excellent choice in Gilles Barrieau as he has always been an outstanding representative of New Brunswick harness racing, not just this year but throughout his career. He is widely recognized for his training and driving talents; a complete horseman and gentleman, much like Earl Avery was himself." Barrieau will receive a cheque for $1,000 in the name of a recognized charity that he has chosen and will have an opportunity to present it to that charity on behalf of all horse people in the province during the upcoming horse racing season. The creation of the Earl Avery Award and the prize is a collaboration between Horse Racing New Brunswick and the Horseman’s Associations in Woodstock, Fredericton, Saint John and Moncton. Submitted from Earl Avery Awards

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