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TORONTO, December 20 - Over a track rated 'sloppy,' Avatartist and driver/co-owner Mike Saftic took the lone $15,000 division of the second leg of the Valedictory series on Friday at Woodbine. With the victory, the son of Rocknroll Hanover stamped his way into the rich $33,900 final on Boxing Day (December 26), which holds a special 1:00 p.m. first-race post time. The field was narrowed down from 12 to eight starters due to weather and track conditions. Saftic urged Avatartist off the gate and quickly gained command well before the opening quarter in :26.3. Longshot Trys Little Prince (Anthony Macdonald) was In The Pocket with Mr Why (Wayne Mac Lean) sitting third. Avatartist continued to lead past the half in :56.4 and three-quarters in 1:26. Turning for home, Trys Little Prince edged to the outside, but couldn't match strides with Avatartist as he went on to score the win in 1:54.2. Trys Little Prince stayed for second, while race favourite Americhi (Mike Vanderkemp) came from off-the-pace to finish third. William Hill, Peter Harrison and James Walker are also involved in the ownership on the pacer. Trained by Garth Gordon, Avatartist celebrated his seventh career tally as his bankroll now sits at 79,220. He paid $7.50 to win. The series is for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings that are non-winners of $50,000 lifetime as of midnight, October 31, 2013. Greg Gangle  

Santanna Blue Chip was a household harness racing name back five years ago in 2008 when the excellent son of Art Major won $1.6 million. He raced successfully in his three-year-old season against none other than Somebeachsomewhere, Art Official, Shadow Play and Dali. Well, he’s back and back winning again too! Returned to racing after a four year stint as a stallion, Santanna Blue Chip rewarded his backers in his third start, winning the fourth race $16,000 n /w pace and at a price of 9-1! In his first two start, and now he is eight years old, Santanna Blue Chip, driven by Billy Davis, Jr., enjoyed a third-over trip behind Real Rocker (Randy Waples) who was following the first-over Lennon Blue Chip (Jonathan Drury) as they were coming on to challenge pacesetter Kindly Poet (Sylvain Filion) with My Man Charley (Anthony Macdonald) sitting the two-hole trip. At the three-quarters in 1:24.4, Davis sent Santannta Blue Chip three-wide and he looped the field and then held on in the stretch to win by a half length in 1:53 over late closing The Ladies Man (Mike Saftic) and Lennon Blue Chip.  He is trained and owned by Jeff Gillis of Hillsburgh, Ontario and paid a generous $18.90 to win. As a stallion he bred 123 mares last year in New Zealand. Click here for a recent article on Santanna Blue Chip on Harnesslink. Videos of all races are attached. by Steve Wolf for 

TORONTO, December 13 - The $15,000 opening round of the Valedictory Series highlighted the Friday card at Woodbine with J C Onthebeach capturing the fastest of two divisions. Driven by Jonathan Drury, J C Onthebeach earned himself a new lifetime best as he got under the wire first in 1:52.2. The gelded son of Somebeachsomewhere was first to the front at the opening station in :27, but allowed a parked-out Tauranga (Chris Christoforou) to clear to the position of command heading to the half. Drury quickly regained the front, but was in the pocket once again as heavily-favoured Americhi (Jody Jamieson) took control past the half in :56. Americhi would continue to lead past three-quarters in 1:23.4 and into the stretch, but couldn't fend off a late challenge from J C Onthebeach in deep stretch. Yucatan (Randy Waples) finished third. Trained by Therese Vrablic for owner Bruce Soulsby, J C Onthebeach is a perfect two-for-two since arriving in the Vrablic barn. The pacing sophomore celebrated his seventh career tally as his bankroll now sits at $45,034. He paid $10.80 to win. In the other split, favoured Alexas Jackpot and Jody Jamieson stopped the timer in 1:53.3. Jamieson put Alexas Jackpot in the three-hole in the early stages as Avatartist (Mike Saftic) wanted command from the post one to lead past the opening quarter in :27.3. Saftic and Avatartist would continue to lead past the half in :56.3, before Alexas Jackpot began the first-over journey. Avatartist marched past three-quarters in 1:25.1, but Alexas Jackpot was hot on his heels down the stretch and eventually wore down the tempo-setter en route to victory. Hes A Sensation (Phil Hudon) came from off-the-pace to finish second, with Pappys Pal (Keith Oliver) finishing third. Trained and co-owned by Marty Fine along with Highland Thoroughbred Frm, Alexas Jackpot enjoyed his fifth career score as his bankroll climbed to $56,700. The son of Million Dollar Cam now has a 5-3-2 record from 16 starts this season. He paid $3.60 to win. The Valedictory Series is for three-year-old colts and geldings, who are non-winners of $50,000 lifetime as of October 31. The second $15,000 leg will go postward on Friday, December 20. The $30,000 (added) final will take place on Boxing Day (December 26), which holds a special 1:00 p.m. first-race post time. Videos of all races attached. Greg Gangle  

TORONTO, November 29 – Woodbine Racetrack was the host of four Autumn Series finals on Friday evening, featuring sophomores of both gaits and sexes. In the $34,700 glamour boy final, Thorn In Your Side and Anthony Macdonald got the jump on their rivals down the stretch to score in a career-best clocking of 1:51. MacDonald and Thorn In Your Side were the first leaders, but allowed Grantor Hanover (Randy Waples) to command at the quarter in a quick :26. The lead wouldn’t last long as Thorn In Your Side quickly retook command and laid down middle-half speed of :55 and 1:22. Turning for home, MacDonald and Thorn In Your Side appeared to get the jump on co-favourite Alexas Jackpot (Jody Jamieson), who had stalled cover from the half on. Down the stretch, MacDonald was in an all-out drive on Thorn In Your Side as he got the jump on his rivals to win for the tenth time on the year. Alexas Jackpot closed well to finish second, with Sea Harrier (James MacDonald) finishing third. Trained by Carmen Auciello for owner High Stakes Stable Inc, Thorn In Your Side earned his sixth win in seven starts as he increased his lifetime earnings to $98,327. Thorn In Your Side finished first and second in both preliminary rounds. The son of Mach Three paid $4.60 to win. Be Winnin, driven by Chris Christoforou, posted the 35-1 upset as she defeated heavily-favoured Samira Hanover in the final strides to take the $33,600 final for sophomore trotting fillies. The daughter of Angus Hall sat In The Pocket throughout the mile as Samira Hanover laid down panels of :27.4, :58.2 and 1:27.3, before Be Winnin angled out to wear down the tempo-setter to score in 1:55.4 - a new stakes record. Fathers Amiga (Mike Saftic) finished third. Trained by Glenn Lalonde for owner/breeder Bob Key, Be Winnin increased her bankroll to $55,448 as she celebrated her fourth career tally. The trotting lass enjoyed a new career best in the process before returning $61.80 to her backers. In the $33,600 trotting colts and geldings division, Popeda and Sylvain Filion provided the 5-1 minor upset in 1:55.3. Popeda was in no hurry off the start as heavily-favoured Doubledown Gass (Reg Gassien) was the first leader through the opening quarter in a quick :26.4. Doubledown Gass continued to lead past the mid-way point in :56.4, before Popeda angled out of fourth and began the first over attack around the final turn. Doubledown Gass continued to lead past three-quarters in 1:27, but Popeda quickly surged to command down the stretch and held off a late challenge from Lets Leavem (Chris Christoforou), who enjoyed a pocket trip throughout the mile. Doubledown Gass stayed for third. Owned by Overseas Farms Ltd and trained by Richard Moreau, Popeda enjoyed his fourth career victory as his lifetime earning now sit at $58,676. The son of Ken Warkentin celebrated a new lifetime best as he returned $13.60. Machnbyrd Princess and Hall of Fame driver Steve Condren clicked in the $35,300 pacing filly final in 1:53.1. Putmeintogo (Roger Mayotte) was the leader throughout most of the mile as she laid down panels of :27.2, :56.3 and 1:25.2. Condren used first-over tactics with Machnbyrd Princess around the final turn and was within striking range of the tempo-setter turning for home. Down the stretch, Machnbyrd Princess, Putmeintogo and Lyonssweetie (Randy Waples), who enjoyed a pocket trip, were all heads apart with Machnbyrd Princess getting the upper hand on her rivals in the final strides. Post time favourite Lyonssweetie finished second, with Putmeintogo completing the triactor. Shawn Robinson trains the six-time winner for owner Canamerica Capital Corp and Hyatt Holdings. The daughter of Mach Three increased her bankroll to $91,360. She paid $9.50 to win as the third choice. Videos of all races are attached. Greg Gangle WEG Communications 

Toronto, November 1 - Round two of the Autumn Series continued Friday evening at Woodbine Racetrack with five divisions contested. Divisions were held for rookie colts and geldings of both gaits. Aventure will look for the series sweep after an impressive 1:57.3 victory to start the 13-race programme. The trotting son of Muscle Mass sat third in the early going past the opening quarter in :29.2. From there, driver Sylvain Filion pulled on the right line and marched the three-time winner to the front at the half in :59.1. The Bill Budd trainee led his six rivals past three quarters in 1:28.2, before edging away from his rivals in deep stretch to score the victory. Longshot Theresademoninme (Steve Condren) finished second with Kremlin (Riina Rekila) third. Owned by Orville Rursch, Aventure increased his bankroll to $24,250. He paid $7 to win. In the other trotting split, Hitchin A Ride and Jack Moiseyev got under the wire first as the heavy 1/9 favourite. Moiseyev guided the son of Angus Hall into the pocket spot before the opening station in :28.2, before pocket-pulling the three-time winner at the half in :58.2. Moiseyev and Hitchin A Ride continued to lead five rivals past three-quarters in 1:27.4 and never looked back en route to a 1:58.2 victory. Wire Me Cash (Anthony Macdonald) finished second with Yoooukilis (Paul Macdonell) finishing third. Trained by Tom Durand for his wife, June, along with Allan Smith and Catherine and Lynn Baker, Hitchin A Ride increased his rookie earnings to $33,428. He paid $2.30 to win. Major Starlight, driven by Paul Macdonell, pulled off the 7/2 minor upset in the first of three pacing divisions. The son of Major In Art enjoyed a three-hole trip through panels of :26.4, :55.4 and 1:25.2, before MacDonell was able to find racing room late in the mile to win in 1:54.3. Vegas Rich (Sylvain Filion) finished second with even-money favourite Pop Pop Joe (Chris Christoforou) settling for third. Trained and co-owned by Allen Tomlinson along with Thomas Phillips, Major Starlight earned his second career victory. The brown gelding increased his bankroll to $19,155 and paid $9.70 to win. In the next division, Allstar Seelster and Mike Saftic prevailed as the heavy favourite in 1:54.1. The four-time winner was first to the front well before the opening station in :28, before releasing a parked-out Brodys Scrapper (Randy Waples). Saftic and Allstar Seelster quickly regained the lead and marched past the half in :57 and three-quarters in 1:25.2, before edging away from his rivals in deep stretch to win by one and three quarter lengths. Brodys Scrapper stayed for second over Royal Ashton (James MacDonald). Trained and owned by Jack Darling, Allstar Seelster now has three straight wins and will look for the series sweep next Friday evening at Woodbine. The talented youngster increased his bankroll to $43,443. He paid $3.70 to win. In the final division, heavily-favoured Prince Clyde found the wire first in 1:53 for driver Keith Oliver. The son of Camluck overtook command past the opening station in :27, before allowing Shadios (Billy Davis, Jr.) to command. Prince Clyde sat In The Pocket as Shadios controlled the pace past the half in :56.2 and three-quarters in 1:24.2. Oliver angled Prince Clyde off the pylons before the top of the stretch and the four-time winner cruised to an effortless victory. King Royalty (Randy Waples) came from well off-the-pace to finish second, over Shadios. Trained by Tony Montini for his wife, Albina, and Holland Racing Stable, Prince Clyde increased his bankroll to $38,038. He paid $3.30 to win. All four $25,000E Autumns Stakes finals for two-year-olds of both gaits and sexes will take place next Friday evening at Woodbine Racetrack. Due to the Breeders Cup, tomorrow night's 12-race programme will have a special 7:55 p.m. post time. Videos of all races attached Greg Gangle

LONDON, ON - Ontario's exciting three-year-old trotters and pacers opened up two nights of Grassroots Consolation action at The Raceway at Western Fair District on Monday evening. The Grassroots events followed on the heels of the Gold Series Consolations at Grand River Raceway and driver Doug McNair added two more wins to the three he posted on Sunday. The 23-year-old reinsman made his first appearance in the London winner's circle following the fifth race, guiding three-year-old trotting colt Cabertoss to a half-length victory in a personal best 1:59. McNair engineered the victory for trainer and breeder William Murray and owner William Murray Jr. of Mountain, ON. The lightly rated son of Muscle Mass, who went into the race ranked fifteenth in the Grassroots point standings, bested Next To Go and Sir William. Teaming up with three-year-old pacing gelding Ja El Pocketrocket in the tenth race, McNair once again employed a come-from-behind strategy and the fans' second choice rocketed home to a six and three-quarter length victory in a personal best 1:54. Maddysonofagun followed the winner up the outside into second and Southwind Amazon rounded out the top three. Favourite and early leader OK Fabulous settled for fourth. Leonard Gamble of Etobicoke, ON owns Ja El Pocketrocket and Barry Treen conditions the son of Santanna Blue Chip, who finished the regular season eighteenth in the point standings. The other sophomore trotting colt Consolation was captured by Doubledown Gass and trainer-driver Reg Gassien in 1:59 and the other pacing colt contest went to The Real One and driver Scott Coulter in 1:55. Driver Mike Saftic also garnered two Grassroots Consolation wins, starting with a commanding victory by fan favourite Cardio Pump in the second three-year-old trotting filly battle. Cardio Pump grabbed control going by the three-quarters and accelerated away from the field to a nine and one-quarter length triumph in 1:59.4. Oaklea Veronica and Speedy Kim Mindale trotted into second and third. Saftic piloted Cardio Pump to her first Ontario Sires Stakes victory for trainer Mark Steacy and owner Hutt Racing Stable of Paoli, PA. The Angus Hall daughter finished second in both of her regular season Grassroots appearances, putting her twenty-fourth in the point standings. The veteran reinsman's second victory came in the next race with sophomore pacing filly Foolish Mind, who led from start to finish, hanging on for a nose victory in 1:56.2. Fan favourite Burlesque finished second but was placed back to eighth for a pylon violation, promoting Panstakingly and Hippie Chic into second and third. Sue Marie Gangell of Simcoe, ON trains Foolish Mind for her partner Barry Charles of New Rochelle, NY. The I Am A Fool filly was a two-time Grassroots winner during the regular season and finished fifth in the point standings. The other pacing filly trophy went home with Mark Steacy trainee Shanghai Mimi, who was piloted to a 1:57.1 win by Chris Christoforou. The first trotting filly division was captured by Standing My Ground and Sylvain Filion in 1:58.3. Grassroots Consolation action resumes at The Raceway on Tuesday evening with eight $20,000 battles for Ontario's exciting two-year-old trotters and pacers. The first race gets under way at 4:05 pm. For complete results Sandra Snyder  

CAMPBELLVILLE, ON — During the winter of 2010-11 long time Boston Bruins fans Joe MacIsaac was watching his team play the Toronto Maple Leafs while thinking up names for the latest foal from partner Carolyn Williston’s broodmare Chelemark Gizmo. As the Boston faithful chanted ‘Thank You Kessel’ — referencing the 2009 trade deal that sent Phil Kessel to the Leafs in exchange for draft picks that would become Boston stars Tyler Seguin and Dougie Hamilton — MacIsaac thought, ‘Why not?’ and weeks later the name Thankyoukessel was approved by Standardbred Canada. Thankyoukessel made his racing debut in the summer of 2012 and over the past two years has amassed a consistent record of seven wins, two seconds and three thirds in 19 starts for earnings of $212,445. Competing at the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Gold Series level this season the gelding has posted two wins, two thirds and one fifth, ranking him second in the point standings heading into Saturday night’s $200,000 Super Final at Mohawk Racetrack. “He started off the year good with a win down in London and he really, really didn’t give us a bad race all year,” says Moffat resident MacIsaac. “He doesn’t do a whole lot wrong; he’s a pretty nice boy.” In addition to his successes in the Gold Series, Thankyoukessel also captured the Canadian Breeders Championship at Mohawk on July 20 in a personal best 1:54.2 and his sophomore debut in a May 2 overnight event at Woodbine Racetrack. The Ken Warkentin gelding has surpassed the standard set by his full-sister Witch Way, who was a Gold Final winner and earned $170,833 in her career. “The best thing about that mare, all her foals have been good gaited,” says MacIsaac, who raced a two-year-old Federal Flex half-brother to Thankyoukessel this summer and will start training a yearling Federal Flex brother this fall. “That makes it a lot easier to get them to the races.” Thankyoukessel and driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville will make their run at the OSS division title from Post 3 in Saturday’s seventh race and MacIsaac is expecting another exciting show from the talented Ontario-sired colts. Point leader Buddy Hally will start from Post 4, Goodtimes and Mid-Summer Challenge winner Flanagan Memory gets Post 7, and Yonkers Trot Elimination winner and reigning Super Final champion Creampuff Macdaddy will start from Post 9. “I don’t know how it will end up shaping up,” notes the trainer, “But Flanagan Memory looks like the horse to beat.” Thankyoukessel finished third to Flanagan Memory in the Sept. 20 Gold Series event at Mohawk Racetrack, a mile timed in 1:53.3, and MacIsaac is not sure the gelding can alter that result on Saturday. However, whether Thankyoukessel finishes off his sophomore stakes campaign with a win or a loss, MacIsaac and Williston will head home just as happy with the trotter’s efforts as Boston fans have been with the Kessel trade. “We’re just looking forward to tomorrow (Saturday). I hope things work out for him and he gets a piece of it, but regardless, it’s been a great year for us,” MacIsaac explains. “Anything he gets will be a bonus for us right now. We’re going to enjoy it any way.” Post time for Mohawk Racetrack’s Saturday, Sept, 28 program is 7:25 pm, with the Ontario Sires Stakes Super Finals featured in Races 2 through 5 and 7 through 10. For complete entries please go to Ontario Sires Stakes

INNISFIL, ON - Mark Steacy trainees captured the first two $18,000 Grassroots divisions at Georgian Downs on Tuesday, Aug. 27. Sophomore trotting filly Juliet kicked off the evening's festivities with a gate-to-wire score in 1:56.3. The Majestic Son daughter hit the wire one-half length ahead of Moms Apple Pie and fan favourite Legzy to record her first Ontario Sires Stakes victory. Mike Saftic crafted the win for Juliet's owners Landmark V Racing Stable of Kingston, David Reid of Glenburnie, A K Malik Stable of Ottawa and Salt Hill Farm Ltd. of Pine Bush, NY. The win gave the filly a sophomore record of two wins, two seconds and one third in 10 starts for earnings of $25,701. One race later Steacy trainee Swishnflick and driver Chris Christoforou also opted for front-end tactics, battling to a 1:56.4 one-half length victory over division point leader Muscle Magic and fan favourite I Like My Kaddy. Steacy conditions Swishnflick for Landmark V Racing Stable, Diane Bertrand of Edmonton, AB, Richard Karper of Saint-Laurent, QC and Conrad Leber of Montreal, QC. The win was Swishnflick's second in two Grassroots starts and bumped the Kadabra daughter into eighth spot in the race for one of 10 berths in the season ending Grassroots Championship. Christoforou picked up a second Grassroots victory in the fourth division, piloting Fathers Amiga to a three and one-half length upset over Ms Warkentin and Atalanta. The 1:57.2 score was the Amigo Hall daughter's first. Edward Peconi Jr. trains the filly for Patricia Wall of Omemee and James Patrick Wall of Youngs Point. Grassroots favourites did not fare well at Georgian Downs on Tuesday, as all five went down in defeat over a sloppy oval rated one second slower than normal. The other upset winners were Wind Stroll in 1:58 and Eloise Eden in 1:56.3. The three-year-old trotting fillies make their sixth and final regular season Grassroots start at Grand River Raceway on Sept. 6. Tuesday's contest completed Georgian Downs' 2013 Ontario Sires Stakes season, which saw all eight provincial divisions compete over the Innisfil oval. For complete results. For up to date point standings, race replays, and more. Sandra Snyder  

ELORA, ON - Fans may not have sent Thankyoukessel off as their top choice in the second Gold Series division at Grand River Raceway on Friday night, but driver Mike Saftic was confident in his mount's abilities. Starting from Post 6, Saftic put Thankyoukessel on the rail in fourth while last year's Grassroots champ Buddy Hally rolled through fractions of :29.2, :58.4 and 1:27.2. Heading for the three-quarter marker Saftic tipped Thankyoukessel out behind fan favourite Gotta Secret and waited until the stretch to shift the gelding into top gear. Once he hit his stride Canadian Breeders champ Thankyoukessel reeled in the leaders and hit the wire one-quarter length on top in a track record 1:57.1. Buddy Hally settled for second and Gotta Secret was relegated to third. The win was the second in Gold Series action this season for Thankyoukessel, who is trained by Joe MacIsaac for owner-breeder Carolyn Williston of Moffat. The win vaulted the Ken Warkentin son to the top of the three-year-old trotting colt point standings with 112. After starting his season at the Grassroots level, last year's Super Final champion Creampuff Macdaddy made a successful leap up to the top tier with a gate-to-wire 1:59.1 score in the first $105,000 division. Another son of Ken Warkentin, Creampuff Macdaddy is trained by Brad Maxwell for Howard Taylor of Philadelphia, PA, Theodore Gewertz of New York, NY, Edwin Gold of Phoenixville, PA and Judith Taylor of Bala Cynwyd, PA. Randy Waples crafted the colt's third sophomore victory. The three-year-old trotting colts make their last regular season Gold Series start at Mohawk Racetrack on Sept. 20. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Grand River Raceway on Monday, Aug. 26 with the fourth Gold Series leg for the three-year-old pacing fillies. For complete results For up to date point standings, race replays, and more. Sandra Snyder  

Diamonds For Life sharp in second Grassroots win CAMPBELLVILLE, ON - The second showdown between two-year-old trottingfillies Chelseas Chance and Diamonds For Life resulted in the fastest of five Grassroots divisions at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday, July 29. After finishing one-two in the July 6 season opener at Kawartha Downs, the fillies squared up for their second battle in Race 9 and engaged in an early tussle for the lead with Diamonds For Life reaching the quarter in :29.1 and Chelseas Chance taking over before the :58.4 half. Fan favourites Chelseas Chance and driver Steve Condren of Milton sailed on to a 1:29 three-quarters and were more than one length ahead when they hit the stretch, but reinsman Trevor Ritchie and Diamonds For Life were sitting on a little extra speed. When Acton resident Ritchie asked his filly for one last charge, Diamonds For Life powered by Chelseas Chance to score a one and one-quarter length victory in 1:59.2, matching the personal best they recorded in the July 13 Grassroots event at Georgian Downs. Ritchie engineered the Angus Hall filly's second straight victory for trainer Mark Steacy and owners Frank Spagnolo and Frank Schimizzi of Ottawa. Diamonds For Life and Chelseas Chance are now tied for second in the point standings, trailing Muscle Girl, who picked up her Third Straight Grassroots win in the sixth race. Driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville guided the filly to a 1:59.3 win off a front-end trip for Ray Paquette of Port Hope, who bred, owns and trains the Muscle Mass daughter. Valencia Sol recorded her first lifetime win in the first $18,000 division, circling out three-wide to grab the 2:01.4 victory. Greg Dustin of Strathroy trains and drives the Amigo Hall miss for Jackie Drysdale of Orangeville and Darlene Hayes of Carlisle. The other Grassroots divisions were captured by Bit A Magic (2:00.4) and Wawona (2:00.4). The two-year-old trotting fillies make their fourth Grassroots start at Georgian Downs on Aug. 6. On Monday, Aug. 5 Mohawk Racetrack will host the second Mid-Summer Challenge of the 2013 Ontario Sires Stakes season, welcoming the top 20 two-year-old trotting colts and fillies from the Gold Series division.  For complete results.                   For up to date point standings, race replays, and more. Sandra Snyder  

Lucan Hanover Sweeps Summertime Pacing Series CAMPBELLVILLE, July 29 – Casie Coleman’s Lucan Hanover completed the Summertime Pacing Series sweep as the swift pacer scored at ease in the $47,000 final, Monday at Mohawk. Sent off as the 1/9 heavy favourite, Lucan Hanover also captured both preliminary legs for owners West Wins Stable and Christine Calhoun. Driven by Scott Zeron, Lucan Hanover settled away in fifth as Ahdoughnolum (Luc Ouellette) blasted to command before the opening panel in :26.3. As the pacing colts and geldings marched towards the half, Zeron made a quick brush to the front with Lucan Hanover before the mid-way point in :55.2. From there, Zeron and the son of Western Ideal cruised past three-quarters in 1:23 en route to an open-length win in 1:50.4. Manchester (Randy Waples) came on to finish second with Avatartist (Mike Saftic) third. “I didn’t want to gun him to the front. I kind of wanted to take my time with him,” Zeron said following the win. “I made the choice to power move him because the pace was slow and he can make that move and he carried his speed right to the wire. He started of at The Meadowlands this year and Casie [Coleman] wanted to bring him up here and braven him up and he’s done that” A $47,000 yearling purchase, Lucan Hanover celebrated his fifth win from nine starts this season along with $94,820 in earnings. He paid $2.20 to win. All videos for tonight's meeting are attached with Lucan Hanover's win race 10. Greg Gangle  

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 15 - Round two of the Town Pro Pacing series continued at Mohawk on Monday evening, featuring sophomore pacing fillies. Two $20,000 divisions took place with Rachel Welch and Request For Parole getting the lion’s share for their respective connections. In the first division, Rachel Welch, driven by Mike Saftic, used a ground saving trip en route to victory in 1:52.3. Saftic settled Rachel Welch away in third in the early going as Douknowwhereurgoin (Sylvain Filion) crossed to command at the quarter in :27.1. Heading towards the mid-way point, I Got To Boogie (Doug McNair) pocket-pulled and regained the lead well before the half in :56.2. Filion elected to move Douknowwhereurgoin out of the two-hole before three-quarters in 1:25.1, which allowed Rachel Welch to continue to save ground up the pylons. Down the stretch, Douknowwhereurgoin and I Got To Boogie were strides apart, but both were tiring as they were used hard in the early stages of the mile. Rachel Welch was able to gather up all the pieces in deep stretch to celebrate her second career win. Solid Queen (Scott Zeron) came from off-the-pace to finish second with I Got To Boogie third. Trained and owned by Jack Darling, Rachel Welch increased her bankroll to $63,520. She paid a handsome $28.30 to win. After finishing second in the first leg last week, Request For Parole redeemed herself with a victory in the latter division. Driven by Randy Waples, the daughter of Badlands Hanover crossed to command at the quarter in :27.1. Heading towards the half, Somewhereinheaven (Jack Moiseyev) angled out from third and took over command to lead past the half in :56 and three-quarters in 1:24.1. Turning for home, Waples was able to evacuate the pocket as he showed Request For Parole open road. The two-time winner responded with a :27.3 final quarter to wear down Somewhereinheaven and fend off all challengers in 1:52. Somewhereinheaven stayed for second, over Graphene (Doug McNair). Trained by Normand Bardier, Jr. for owner Richard Berthiaume, Request For Parole’s bankroll now sits at $23,000. She paid $3.40 to win. The $40,000E final is slated for Thursday, July 25. Greg Gangle  

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 11 - The opening round of the Summertime Pacing Series took place Thursday evening at Mohawk, featuring three $20,000 haness racing divisions for sophomore pacing colts and geldings.

The first leg of the Beat The Heat Pacing Series was contested in three $18,000 divisions on Saturday evening at Mohawk Racetrack. In the final division, The Ladies Man, driven by Mike Saftic, scored an eye-catching 1:49.2 career best as he took the fastest division.

Ok Commander and harness racing driver Mike Saftic teamed up to win in 1:49.4 tonight at Mohawk Racetrack. The six year old son of Art Major took command at the first quarter and never looked back to win by one and a half lengths from State Treasurer and Odysseus Bluechip who ran third.

Armbro Winner eight year old Star Ruffnready won the $20,000 trot at Woodbine tonight Monday the 22nd of April. The red hot favourite won by a half length in 1:53 from Windsong Hercules and Go Go Red Marty who finishe third. Harness racing driver Mike Saftic was in the bike.

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