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I went four for eight last week, some of my favorite horses got beat, which is bound to happen every now and then. I actually won $.90 (based on $2 win bet each race). We are still in the minus earning column at -$36.30 going into this weekend and we will try once again to bring that number down more. We start off the weekend at the Meadowlands Saturday will a great final stakes program of the season headed by seven major events including the TVG Series Finals and then on Sunday it's the Progress Pace final at Dover Downs. It promises to be a great weekend of racing action! $456,150 Final GoldSmith Maid 2YO Filly Trot 2nd race Saturday, Meadowlands - This race could well wrap-up year-end honors in this division as Shake It Cerry has been super throughout the season for the Jimmy Takter Stable. She should be 1/9 and rightfully so having won her last four-starts and is 7 for 10 on the year with earnings of nearly $600,000. She is a trotting machine and has beaten everyone in this field from on and off the pace. $167,500 Nadia Lobell 3YO Filly Pace 3rd race Saturday, Meadowlands - With I Luv The Nitelife out for the season with a fractured knee this race becomes a two-horse match-up with Shebestingin taking on Charisma Hanover. Both are superb fillies in their own right. Charisma Hanover come in on a five-race win streak with 13 wins this year. But I am going with Shebestingin. She has 11 wins this year, won in Lexington at a mile in world record time of 1:47 and if need be can grind it out on the outside. Will be a classic match-up! $494,750 Valley Victory Final 2YO Colt Trot 4th race Saturday, Meadowlands - With Father Patrick turned out for the season this race should belong to Nuncio. This colt has great speed, first or second in all of his nine starts this year and does not like to be passed. Look for him to get to the front and never look back and has trotting master John Campbell in the sulky too! $500,000 TVG Series Final Open Trot 6th race Saturday, Meadowlands - You can just about make a case for any of the seven horses in this field being able to win. Wishing Stone returned to his winning ways last week in the snow, Mister Herbie was super impressive in his qualifying race, Market Share is total class but I am once again going with Arch Madness. Classy "old man" in the field still has plenty of trot, has beaten this competition before and as long as Trond gets him geared up on the outside by the three-quarters he can grind it out for an upset score. $534,500 Governor's Cup Final 2YO Colt Pace 8th race Saturday, Meadowlands - This will be a very competitive race and I am looking at somewhat of a newcomer grabbing the winner's share of the purse. JK Endofanera showed a :25.4 final quarter mile in a nose lost in a Meadowlands qualifying race, his second nose defeat. Prior to that he shows winning in 1:51.4, has gate speed to insure good position to strike from and has yet to finish worse than second in six lifetime starts. $394,950 Three Diamonds Final 2YO Filly Pace 9th race Saturday, Meadowlands - I think this is a two-horse race between JK Molly and Ali Blue. JK Molly prepped for this final with two sharp qualifying races at the Meadowlands and figures to try and lead all the way in here. But I am going with Ali Blue. She needs mainly to watch her manners and stay on stride but when she is right, which she has been in her last two starts she has the speed to beat JK Molly. $512,000 TVG Free For All Final Open Pace 10th race Saturday, Meadowlands - This is the race many of us have been hoping for all season long. Captaintreacherous, king of the three-year-olds, taking on Foiled Again, Pet Rock and some of the best older pacers in the sport. A lot is riding on this race as Pet Rock and Foiled Again can claim Older Pacer of the Year honors by winning. Foiled Again can even look at possible Pacer of the Year honors with a victory, but both of these game performers have to do one thing first, beat Captaintreacherous. Even with drawing the outside post eight, I think Captaintreacherous has been pointed and primed for this race and that he can beat his older rivals. I don't think he will ever see the lead until mid to late stretch, but if he gets any live cover he will be in position to grind a victory. And when he wins he can claim not only Pacer of the Year honors for the second straight year but also have a shot at Horse of the Year honors. $253,000 Moni Maker 3YO Filly Trot 11th race Saturday, Meadowlands - What can you say about perfection? Bee A Magician looks to close out her superb three-year-old season unbeaten as she goes for her 17th straight win. She has beaten everyone she has faced and done so impressively all season long. Another strong showing in her final race of the year should all but nail down Horse of the Year honors for her...unless the "Captain" can win his race, in which it will be a nail-biter decision that won't be announced until February 23. Either way Bee A Magician has giving us her best week in week out all season long and I can't wait for her to return next year. $284,160 Progress Pace Final 3YO Colts 10th race Sunday, Dover Downs - With Vegas Vacation turned out for the year, the elimination race last week was Sunshine Beach's to win or lose and he lost! Twilight Bonfire turned the tables on Sunshine Beach with an upset win at odds of 20-1. I don't see that happening again today. Sunshine Beach may have it rough at first, having to start from the outside in post eight, but I think that John Campbell will be on the lookout and will rate his colt the best he can and still have something left for the final quarter mile.

Friday night at Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment revived memories of years past with multiple lead changes, horses rallying from well back to win and Mr. Meadowlands stealing the spotlight. All time Meadowlands leading driver John Campbell used the live flow to collect four winners on the night, employing the patented Campbell cover trip style on most. In fact, none of his four wins came with a horse that was on the lead turning for home. Campbell steered Solid Queen to a grinding first over 1:53.4 score in an 8-1 upset for trainer Mike Russo and owner Scott Irwin in the fifth race. He tripped out the very next race with M&M Harness Racing's new purchase Sweet Justice in a career best 1:54- for trainer Bruce Saunders at 2 ½ - 1. Campbell's mount in the eighth was the favored Best Boss, a catch drive for her regular pilot and trainer Pat Lachance. Kept well off the pace, she swept by the field with authority to win in 1:52-. Lachance shares ownership with long time patrons M&M Harness Racing and Ira Rosenblum. The Triple Lindy rallied from well back to take race nine in a personal best equaling 1:54.1 under a Campbell steer. The talented five-year-old was winning for the ninth time this season for trainer Paul Kelley, who shares ownership with all of his friends; Stephen Michaels, Jim Winske, and Bill Weaver. In addition, Corey Callahan, who had his coming out party this year at The Meadowlands this year won three races himself. Tonight's card was the first Friday night of racing in the month of November conducted at The Meadowlands since November of 2010. But the results showed more promise for the new facility. Most significantly, the live handle showed an increase of 50-percent from the comparable November night in 2010. In addition, the total handle yielded a 56-percent increase over that same evening. Tomorrow night's card is one for the ages, with eight stakes on the program worth over $3.4 million. It is the first time The Meadowlands has hosted the "Fall Final Four" since the early winter of 2010. Featured will be the marquee match-up in the $512,000 TVG FFA Pace with sophomore Captaintreacherous facing the finest older pacers on the continent including the sport's richest, the $5.7 million winner Foiled Again. Combined earnings for that race's ten contestants are just shy of the $20 million mark. Hambletonian winner Market Share headlines the $500,000 TVG FFA Trot, while Bee A Magician looks to wrap up an undefeated season in the $253,000 Moni Maker. Get all the info at The Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment website. Rachel Ryan                

Charisma Hanover has charmed driver Yannick Gingras with her recent form as he gets ready to race the 3-year-old filly pacer in Saturday’s $167,500 Nadia Lobell Stakes at Meadowlands Racetrack. Gingras and Charisma Hanover will leave from post seven in the field of eight 3-year-old fillies, which also includes world-record-holder Shebestingin from the stable of trainer Joe Holloway. Charisma Hanover has won 13 of 19 races this season, including seven of her last eight starts. Saturday’s stakes-filled card at the Meadowlands also includes the $534,500 Governor’s Cup for 2-year-old male pacers, $494,750 Valley Victory for 2-year-old male trotters, $456,150 Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, and $394,950 Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers. Also in action is 3-year-old colt Captaintreacherous, who takes on older foes including Foiled Again and Pet Rock in the $512,000 TVG Free For All Series Championship for pacers, and 3-year-old filly trotter Bee A Magician, who looks to complete a perfect season in the $253,000 Moni Maker Stakes. There also is the $500,000 TVG Free For All Series Championship for older trotters. Charisma Hanover enters the Nadia Lobell off a 1:51.4 win in the 3-year-old open Nov. 23 at the Meadowlands. In her previous start, she beat I Luv The Nitelife by a head to capture the American-National Stakes at Balmoral Park. I Luv The Nitelife, the richest filly pacer in harness racing history, was expected to compete in the Nadia Lobell, but will miss the race because of a knee injury that will require surgery. “I think she’s gotten better as the season has gone on, but she’s raced really well all year,” Gingras said about Charisma Hanover, who is trained by Ron Burke and has earned $555,729 this season. “We’ve been racing her a little differently than early in the year. She would get a little too fired up early in the year.” Charisma Hanover got a little fired up in the Valley Forge Stakes at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in August, finishing seventh, but has been simply on fire in her eight starts since then. Her wins included the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship, the Lady Maud and American-National in a stakes- and track-record 1:49. Her only loss during that span came when she suffered broken equipment and was pulled up in a Keystone Classic division at The Meadows in September. “She got the right trip behind I Luv The Nitelife in the American-National, but she never saw the rail either,” Gingras said. “She’s a very good horse herself, really a top horse in my mind.” Charisma Hanover, owned by Burke Racing and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, is a daughter of stallion Dragon Again out of the mare Caught The Bouquet. She is a half-sister to 2004 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes champion Runover Feeling, who finished third in the 2005 North America Cup and has earned nearly $900,000 in his career. The Nadia Lobell field, in addition to Charisma Hanover and Shebestingin, includes UF Dragon’s Queen, Mattie Terror Girl, Aunt Caroline, Jerseylicious, Somwherovrarainbow and Authorize. Shebestingin is the fastest female pacer in history thanks to her 1:47 win in a division of the Glen Garnsey at The Red Mile in October. “There are some good fillies in there that can go real fast as well,” Gingras said. “It should be a great race.” by Ken Weingartner for HRC

This Week: Meadowlands fall stakes finals, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Progress Pace final, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: Meadowlands Racetrack will feature eight stakes on the Saturday night (Nov. 30) card led by the $512,000 TVG FFA Series final for older pacers and the $500,000 TVG FFA Series final for older trotters. Also on tap will be the $534,500 Governor's Cup for 2-year-old male pacers, the $494,750 Valley Victory for 2-year-old male trotters, the $456,150 Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, the $394,950 Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers, the $253,000 Moni Maker for 3-year-old filly trotters and the $167,500 Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers. On Sunday night (Dec 1), Dover Downs will feature the $284,160 Progress Pace final for 3-year-old male pacers. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Meadowlands Racetrack's new season got underway this past Saturday night, with many of the top free for all trotters and pacers in the sport competing in the TVG FFA Series. The team of trainer Ron Burke and driver Yannick Gingras swept both contests as Wishing Stone captured the trot and Foiled Again the pace. In the $50,000 final preliminary leg of the TVG FFA Trotting Series, Wishing Stone and Yannick Gingras led at every quarter, hitting the first quarter in :28.3, stalked by Arch Madness (Trond Smedshammer) and Uncle Peter (David Miller). That trio stayed in the same order through the :56 half and 1:24.4 three-quarters. With about an eighth of a mile to go, Market Share was out and moving, but could not overtake the late leaders, Arch Madness, who came off the rail to challenge and the winner in 1:54 by 1-1/4 lengths, Wishing Stone. Arch Madness was second and Market Share was third. Wishing Stone is trained by Ron Burke for owners Cowboyland Aalborg, TLP Stable, J & T Silva Stables and Deo Volente Farms. "Foiled Again will not be passed." Announcer Ken Warkentin summed up the mile as Foiled Again won the $50,000 TVG FFA Pace at the Meadowlands in 1:49.3. The last chance to gain points for this week's final saw Golden Receiver (Corey Callahan) first on the lead at the opening quarter in :27.1, only to be overtaken by Sweet Lou and David Miller, who held the lead to the :53.4 half. Just past the half, Yannick Gingras had Foiled Again out and poised to advance on the stubborn Sweet Lou, who was still on the lead at the 1:22 three-quarters. As the field paced down the stretch, the advancing duo of Warrawee Needy (Tim Tetrick) and Foiled Again wore down Sweet Lou, and the battle was on between those two. Foiled Again inched ahead and would not yield to Warrawee Needy to win by a neck in 1:49.3. Modern Legend (John Campbell) was third and Sweet Lou was fourth. Foiled Again is trained by Ron Burke and co-owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi and JJK Stables. The $35,000 Progress Pace elimination for 3-year-old males was held on Sunday night at Dover Downs and 20-1 Twilight Bonfire got his picture taken. In a two-colt battle down the lane, Twilight Bonfire finally passed the favorite, Sunshine Beach, in the final strides to win by a head. Dedi's Dragon closed to finish third. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2013, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Hanover Shoe Farms is the sponsor for the 2013 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,827; 2. Tim Tetrick - 1,580; 3. David Miller - 1,143; 4. Brian Sears - 726.5; and 5. Ron Pierce - 692.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,751.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,166.5; 3. Linda Toscano - 495.5; 4. Jonas Czernyson - 472.5; and 5. Tony Alagna - 471. Owners: 1. Burke Racing - 396.8; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 367.35; 3. Frank Bellino - 268.5; 4. Brittany Farms - 263.05; and 5. WJ Donovan - 242.75. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will once again take place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack. The Meadowlands will host W.N. Reynolds Memorial contests for 3-year-old colt and filly pacers.   by Paul Ramlow for the Grand Circuit  

Sixteen down, one to go. Bee A Magician will try to complete a perfect season Saturday night when she faces nine foes in the $253,000 Moni Maker Stakes for 3-year-old filly trotters at Meadowlands Racetrack. Ranked No. 1 in the sport's current Top 10 poll, Bee A Magician is 16-for-16 this year, with $1.42 million in earnings. She will start the Moni Maker from post eight for trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman and driver Brian Sears. "I am feeling a bit of pressure, yeah," Norman said. "I wasn't feeling any until now, because you're so close. We're a few days away from it being over. "But it's exciting. The other thing is you could be not racing. Two weeks from now when she's not racing and she's out in the paddock I'm going to miss her, that's for sure." Bee A Magician will try to join Muscle Hill, Syrinx Hanover and A Worthy Lad as the only trotters to go undefeated at age 3 and earn year-end honors dating back to 1975. Muscle Hill, a colt, won all 12 of his races in 2009 and was named Horse of the Year in both the U.S. and Canada. Syrinx Hanover, a filly, went 12-for-12 in 2001 and was named Trotter of the Year in the U.S. (losing Horse of the Year to filly pacer Bunny Lake). A Worthy Lad, a colt, was perfect in 13 starts in 1990 and received the O'Brien Award as Canada's best 3-year-old male trotter. "It's just a dream," said Mel Hartman, who owns Bee A Magician with David McDuffee and Herb Liverman. "At times she's done it so easy it's scary. I've had some great horses, but if you have a horse that's being considered for Horse of the Year they have to be super special. I would say she's super special. It's been a hell of a ride." Bee A Magician's wins this year include the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, in a stakes-record 1:51.4, and the $500,000 Breeders Crown, in a stakes-record 1:52.4. She also captured the Elegantimage Stakes, the Delvin Miller Memorial in a world-record 1:51, and the Ontario Sire Stakes championship. For her career, Bee A Magician has won 26 of 29 races and earned $2.18 million. Her earnings are the record for any filly, trotter or pacer, at ages 2 and 3 combined. She is coming off a victory in the American-National Stakes on Nov. 9 at Balmoral Park in Chicago. "She's had three weeks since her last race, so she's not right on top of her game, I wouldn't say," Norman said. "But we trained today (Tuesday) so she's going to be very close." There is no precipitation in the forecast for Saturday, but it will be cold. The high temperature is projected at 38 degrees and the low at 32. "I'm nervous racing this late in the year," Hartman said. "My experience is that fillies and mares are not too crazy about racing in the cold. It seems harder on them than the (male) horses. I just hope we haven't made a mistake." The Moni Maker field includes Sheena's Shadow, Handover Belle, Ma Chere Hall, Andie Sophia, Little Bitty Lies, Southwind Cocoa and Time To Kill lining up inside Bee A Magician, with Mistery Woman and Deja Vu Too to her outside on the starting gate. "I didn't expect anything like this," Norman said about Bee A Magician's campaign. "You don't expect that from any horse. It is a long year; the horse has been in work since February and we're almost to December. It's 10 months of hard work and a lot of starts. "It's just tough for them to keep going and be good the whole time. It's amazing that she has been, really. That's why it's such a big achievement, I guess. "She's a great horse. I hope she finishes it off." by Ken Weingartner for Harness Racing Communications  

November 25, 2013 – While Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment had a stellar opening, the same cannot be said of the handicappers in this past week’s racing action in HANA Harness’ 2013 Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge sponsored by the Hambletonian Society, Chicago Harness, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs.  The ‘top’ handicapper was overall leader Richard Scott who had a net loss of only $14.50 for the two races on this past week’s slate.  Rusty Nash and Anne Stepien are the only other two handicappers who cashed any tickets.  Overall contest leader, Richard Scott remains on top with a net profit of $33.60, $670.45 ahead of second place handicapper Earl Paulson.   After this week, there are only three races remaining in the contest which concludes December 15, 2013. Here are the contest standings at the conclusion of action on November 23, 2013. As of November 23, 2013 Pos Handicapper Week Gain Net Profit Behind Last Pos Days Missed 1st Richard Scott ($14.50) $33.60 $0.00 1st 6 2nd Earl Paulson ($60.00) ($636.85) ($670.45) 2nd 7 3rd Rusty Nash ($36.60) ($776.87) ($810.47) 3rd 4 4th Ann Stepien ($57.90) ($924.90) ($958.50) 5th 1 5th Dennis O'Hara ($60.00) ($1,060.45) ($1,094.05) 4th 2 6th Garnet Barnsdale ($60.00) ($1,187.74) ($1,221.34) 6th 9 7th Mark McKelvie ($60.00) ($2,139.79) ($2,173.39) 7th 8 8th Gordon Waterstone ($60.00) ($2,233.60) ($2,267.20) 8th 4 9th Sally Hinckley ($60.00) ($2,785.50) ($2,819.10) 9th 0 10th Ray Garnett ($60.00) ($3,429.03) ($3,462.63) 10th 3 Ten grace days permitted.  After ten days, there is a penalty of $30 per race. Contest Schedule This Week Saturday, November 30, 2013 – Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment - $500,000 TVG FFA Series Trot Final; $500,000 TVG FFA Series Pace Final, $534,500 Governors Cup (2yo Open Pace), $394,950 Three Diamonds (2yo Filly Pace), $494,750 Valley Victory (2yo Open Trot), $456,150 Goldsmith Maid (2yo Filly Trot), $172,500(Est.) Nadia Lobell (3yo Filly Pace), $253,000(Est.) Moni Maker (3yo Filly Trot) Sunday, December 1, 2013 – Dover Downs - $330,000(Est.) Progress Pace (3yo Open Pace) by Allan Schott for HANA  

This Week: TVG FFA Series legs, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Progress Pace elimination, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: Meadowlands Racetrack will unveil their new grandstand this Saturday with a card featuring the final preliminary legs of the TVG series for older pacers and trotters. Eliminations were also scheduled in the Governor's Cup for 2-year-old colt pacers, the Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers, the Valley Victory for 2-year-old colt trotters and the Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, but will not be required. Those races will go directly to their lucrative finals on Nov. 30. On Sunday night (Nov. 24), Dover Downs will feature a $35,000 elimination in the Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers. The top eight pacers in the nine horse elimination will advance to the $330,000 (est.) Progress Pace final on Dec. 1. Last time: Eight Matron Stakes finals were featured on the Sunday (Nov. 17) program at Dover Downs. The biggest night in Delaware harness racing history featured multiple track records in the Matron events with more than $1.32 million in purses at stake. [cid:image002.jpg@01CEE5D8.AE518DC0] Among the horses setting a track record was 3-year-old filly pacer Shebestingin, who scored in 1:49.1, besting Ms Caila J Fra (Andy Miller) to the wire in a final quarter of :27.4. Joe Holloway trains the Bettor's Delight-Armbro Tussle filly for Ted Gewertz, L&L DeVisser and Val D'or Farms. She won for the 11th time this season and has earned $554,876. Matt Kakaley moved All Bets Off into the lead after a :26.1 opening quarter and was never headed, collecting a 1:50 triumph in the $154,575 Matron 2-year-old colt pace final, breaking the former track mark of 1:50.4 shared by Heston Blue Chip and If I Can Dream. Ron Burke trains the winner for Frank Baldachino, Rosemary Shelswell, The Panhellenic Stable and Burke Racing Stable. Nuncio knocked two seconds off Explosive Matter's freshman track mark of 1:55 with a powerful 1:53 decision in the $166,650 2-year-old male trot. John Campbell was at the controls as the Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle youngster record his fifth victory in nine starts. Scott Andrews conditions the winner for Stall TZ Inc. Maywood Park hosted four Grand Circuit stakes on their Friday night (Nov. 15) card and Word Power did all the talking in the Windy City Pace, coming up the inside lane to capture Maywood's premiere event in 1:51.4. Scott Zeron steered the 3-year-old son of Western Ideal-Lush Limbaugh for trainer Larry Remmen and owner Brad Grant. Unraced at 2, Word Power pushed his career earnings to $375,804 in securing his seventh lifetime victory in 17 trips postward. Lucan Hanover picked up second-place money, while Apprentice Hanover held on for show honors. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2013, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Hanover Shoe Farms is the sponsor for the 2013 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,772; 2. Tim Tetrick - 1,523; 3. David Miller - 1,123; 4. Brian Sears - 701.5; and 5. Ron Pierce - 672.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,706.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,131.5; 3. Linda Toscano - 493.5; 4. Tony Alagna - 466; and 5. Jonas Czernyson - 447.5. Owners: 1. Burke Racing - 388.5; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 364.05; 3. Frank Bellino - 268.5; 4. Brittany Farms - 263.05; and 5. WJ Donovan - 242.75. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will once again take place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack and Dover Downs. The Meadowlands will host eight stakes, the TVG FFA Series finals for trotters and pacers; the Governor's Cup, Valley Victory, Three Diamonds and Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-olds; the Moni Maker for 3-year-old filly trotters; and the Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers. Dover will host the final in the Progress Pace for 3-year-old pacing colts. by Paul Ramlow for the Grand Circuit  

Lindys Tru Grit will be seeking his second consecutive victory on a Chicago oval when he steps behind the gate in Friday’s $110,000 Galt Stake for sophomore trotting colts. Last week the son of Cantab Hall took a career record of 1:53.3 en route to capturing the $235,000 American National Three-Year-Old Colt Trot at Balmoral Park. Tim Tetrick steered the brown colt to his fifth seasonal victory for trainer Frank Antonacci, who conditions the youngster for his family’s Lindy Racing stable of Enfield, CT. “That was my first American National win and very exciting,” said Antonacci. “We love racing in Chicago and I think it’s a great test for a horse to go to different venues, different sized racetracks and do well. It’s a good opportunity for us this late in the year.” A winner of $291,924 in his career, Lindys Tru Grit came out of his American National victory in fine shape, Antonacci acknowledged. “He seemed fine after the win,” Antonacci confirmed. “There’s only six days in between starts and he’s plenty fit, so all week we’ve just concentrated on keeping him happy and jogging.” Lindys Tru Grit made only one start at two, but did take a qualifying mark of 2, Q2:00.1 in Lexington in late fall with his trainer at the lines. “Last year he was always battling bad allergies,” Antonacci explained. “He had terrible skin allergies and then would get sick. He battled back and forth with this problem all year long and it was a real struggle to keep him healthy. When he was feeling okay, he would show quarters in :28, and those sparks of speed were enough for us to keep him over the winter and try him again this year as a three-year-old.” In the end, Antonacci used an aggressive treatment to “de-sensitize him to his allergies.” “Him getting better could just be a natural function of the aging process, too,” Antonacci admitted. “It’s hard to say. But it was really a troublesome issue to deal with.” With his allergy problem behind him now, this year Lindys Tru Grit has secured victories in the $121,737 Simcoe Stakes at Mohawk; in the $75,000 Zweig at Vernon; and in a pair of Pennsylvania overnights—one at Pocono Downs and the other at Harrah’s Philadelphia — in addition to his Am-Nat triumph last week. “He’s great gaited, doesn’t wear (trotting) hobbles, and goes with a low head,” Antonacci said. “He’s got a little attitude — but just the kind that you like to see a horse have. He’s a very comfortable horse to be around and to have around in the barn.” Antonacci said he focused on getting Lindys Tru Grit confidence up early in the season, before sending him in against better horses. “For a horse like him that didn’t race at two, I look at the first half of this season like I would a horse’s freshman season,” he stated. “I let him run through the ranks at Pocono and let him progress there. It wasn’t until the third or fourth leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes that we started to get serious with him and he started to get confidence under his belt. He was also just a touch below the top horses but now is really coming into himself. He’s pretty fresh, especially for this late in the season. Lindys Tru Grit has drawn post six for the Galt Stake, but Antonacci thinks his versatile sophomore will be able to handle the task over the twice-a-rounder. “He’s got plenty of gate speed or can race off the pace,” Antonacci stressed. “I think whatever David (driver Miller) wants to do with him, he‘ll be able to with him. He can win on the front, be first-over, or race from off the pace. If he’s good, he’ll do it anyway he can.” Antonacci, 30, has conditioned 307 winners to $7,233,078 in earnings, and driven 100 winners to $906,022. His family’s name is synonymous with the trotting gait, as they have owned some of harness racing’s finest diagonally-gaited specialists, including Speedy Crown, Lindys Pride and $5.5 million dollar earner Moni Maker, to name just a few. A Boston College graduate, Antonacci first stepped into the spotlight in 2008 with the world champion Crazed, who earned more than $1 million at age three and won a Hambletonian elimination and finished second in the final. His other noteworthy trotters include Peter Haughton Memorial winner The Lindy Reserve and world champion filly Highscore Kemp. His father “Sonny” Antonacci established Lindy’s Farm in 1965, and to date the Antonacci family has assembled one of the finest trotting broodmare bands in North America. by Kimberly Rinker for Maywood Park

East Rutherford, NJ - As Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment prepares for its grand opening, a look back on the final season raced in the original grandstand reveals inspiring results. The Meadowlands raced 72 days from December 27, 2012 through Hambletonian Day, August 3, 2013 and The Meadowlands can proudly announce that total handle for the 72 days surpassed $204 Million. The average handle per night was $2,843,203. “After receiving the final numbers, seeing our handle exceeded $200 Million is something all of harness racing can be proud of,” said Director of Racing Operations Darin Zoccali. “This past season was a transition year for us and to have had the type of success we had is extremely promising. On the heels of one of best racing seasons at The Meadowlands in years, we are obviously all extremely excited to see what 2014 and the new Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment will bring.” Compared to 2012, the total handle, despite racing six less days, yielded an increase of over $44 Million, or 28-percent. The average daily handle of $2,843,203 was an increase of more than $700,000 over the average daily handle in 2012, or 33-percent. “We did a lot of things differently this past year,” said General Manager Jason Settlemoir. “We got rid of the notion that change cannot be positive because the way things have always been done takes precedent. From changes to our wagering format, to pursuing bigger bettors, making an integrity-driven product our top priority, dramatically increasing event marketing and providing outstanding customer service, this past season has provided a template for our future success. Now, adding all of that to a brand new, state of the art facility, we cannot wait to see what 2014 will bring.” Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment has its Grand Opening on Saturday November 23rd, with first post time at 7:15 P.M. The opening night program features eliminations for the Fall Final Four and the final preliminary legs of the TVG Free For All Championships. Thanksgiving weekend features cards on both Friday November 29th and Saturday November 30th. The November 30th card will be one of the best of the year for the sport of harness racing with Finals of the Nadia Lobell, Moni Maker, Fall Final Four and TVG Free For All Championships. Purses for the evening will surpass $3 Million. In addition, Horse of the Year will be on the line as Bee A Magician looks to put a bow on an undefeated season, while Captaintreacherous hopes to defeat the best Free For All Pacers in the world. It will be a night to remember. Visit www.PlayMeadowlands.com for details. by Rachel Ryan for the Meadowlands  

WILKES-BARRE PA -- Bee A Magician ($2.20) extended her unbeaten 2013 campaign to fifteen straight victories and put on display her credentials for Harness Horse of the Year Saturday night at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs with an effortless victory in the $500,000 three-year-old filly trot Breeders Crown championship, her 1:52.4 winning time the fastest Crown triumph in her division ever despite sloppy going. Driver Brian Sears let his rivals battle to a 27 first quarter, with Frau Blucher and Ma Chere Hall taking the 1-2 early spots, before moving Bee A Magician to the lead well before the 55.2 half split (Ma Chere Hall eliminated herself at this point with a break). The daughter of Kadabra needed only the magic of her athletic superiority to be in control from there, with a clocking of 1:24 with a quarter-mile left to go preceding a powerful, drawing-away triumph in the record time. White Birch Farm is the breeder of the newly-minted $2,000,000 winner, with the beneficiaries of this largesse being owners Melvin Hartman, Herb Liverman, and David McDuffee. Frau Blucher could not stay with the champion winner through the lane, but held the place, 4 1/2 lengths behind and 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Southwind Cocoa, who shot the passing lane for the last board spot; Thistle Dhu and Coffecake Hanover were next in line at the wire. Sears, who has won a Crown event for 11 consecutive years, the longest active streak, says, "She gets over the ground so easily -- 55.2 was a little bit faster to the half than I might have liked, but you'd hardly know she's going that fast, she covers ground so effortlessly." Trainer "Nifty" Norman gave out a bit of interesting news when he said that Bee A Magician was being pointed to face older mares in the Moni Maker Trot at The Meadowlands on November 30. "She's a fantastic horse," Norman enthused. "The best thing about her is her attitude -- she just wants to win more than the other horses." FINISHING LINES -- Sears won the evening's ninth Crown event; four drivers -- Yannick Gingras, Tim Tetrick, Ron Pierce, and David Miller -- each had two wins before Sears. Video attached by Jerry Connors for Harnesslink.com

Bee A Magician to race at 4 & 5!

Campbellville, ON - The Racing Under Saddle (RUS) Ontario series makes a stop at Mohawk on Saturday, September 28 as part of the OSS Super Finals card. Emma-Jayne Wilson, a Sovereign and Eclipse Award-winning jockey, will join a group of talented riders accompanied by trotters traditionally seen in harness racing, showcasing the versatility and speed of the standardbred. In 2007, Wilson became the first female rider to win the historic Queen's Plate when she guided Mike Fox to a memorable victory. With more than 1 100 career wins to her name as a thoroughbred jockey, Wilson will be seeking her first score with a standardbred in Saturday's exhibition. "I'm so excited for this event. I definitely plan on winning!" said Wilson. The studious Wilson is preparing for Saturday's race by watching video of one of her idols, jockey Julie Krone, guiding Moni Maker to a world record for trotting under saddle in a 2000 event held at The Red Mile. "I looked up the video of Julie Krone breaking the world record on Moni Maker just so I could see her ride this trotter and it was very informative," said Wilson. "I know what I want to do and how I want to feel on a horse because of what I do here at Woodbine on a daily basis, but I wasn't sure how it would translate to riding a standardbred." Wilson has also spent time on the RUS website (www.RUSontario.com) checking out her competition and she's hopeful her thoroughbred experience will give her an advantage. "I plan on riding as close to how I usually ride as I possibly can," said Wilson. "What really helped me was watching Julie ride Moni Maker. She rode tight and really low and she held the horse together." As an avid advocate of the sport of horse racing, Wilson will take to Twitter (@EJWilson81), where she boasts more than 1600 followers, to provide fans an inside look at her foray into standardbred racing. "Although thoroughbred and standardbred racing are two very different sports, we are in the same industry and face the same challenges," said Wilson. "By building off the potential of the RUS events, even if it's just a novelty to get people to the track and show them what a good time it is, I think we need to take full advantage of all opportunities to promote racing." Wilson will be challenged on Saturday by Riina Rekila, who already boasts four wins in the 2013 RUS Series. In 2010, the Finnish-born trainer-driver was the first-ever female nominee for the prestigious O'Brien Award Of Horsemanship. The RUS exhibition, a one-mile dash around the Mohawk oval, will take place after Saturday night's second race which goes to post 7:45 p.m. ET. First post time on Saturday at Mohawk is 7:25 p.m. For more information about RUS Ontario, please visit: www.RUSontario.com and follow @RUS_Ontario on Twitter. FIELD FOR THE RUS ONTARIO EXHIBITION POST / HORSE / RIDER / TRAINER 1 / Leonardo Da Lindy / M Brooking / M Brooking 2 / Ill Be There / E Wilson / A Montini / A Montini 3 / Snoops Sourceress / S Town / P Henriksen 4 / Wedgewood / T Enberg / G Maltby 5 / Hetties Honey / A Humphries / M Macri 6 / Sixth Man / S Macdonald / J Walker 7 / Charlie Tuna / B Kennedy / J Yake 8 / Loco Caballo / L Lindstrom / B Burgess 9 / Harlequin / R Rekila / G Maltby by Greg Gangle For WEG  

Yohan Lebourgeois, the leading monte jockey in France in 2012, today steered Valdice de Mars (4f Lynx de Bellouet-Tiphanie) to victory in the Gr. II Monte Prix Ceneri Forcinal (120,000 euro purse, 2175 meters) at Paris-Vincennes. Off at 2.6/1 the winner defeated Viva Forest (4f Mickael de Vonnas-Java de Bazeille), with Anthony Barrier aboard, timed in 1.13.1kr, with third going to Vic du Boisnant (4m Gazoullis-Ode du Boisnant), Alexandre Abrivard in the irons. Three year-old monte performers Saturday contested the Prix de Basly, (Gr. II, 120,000 euro purse, 2175 meters). Alexiandu Cherisay (3f The Big Boss-Precious Thing) scored in 1.14.1kr with Pierre-Yves Verva up at odds of 21/1. Antara Buissonay (3f La Retour-Jadelle Buissonay), P-Edouard Mary aboard, was second with third to Asana Trembladaise (3f Kuadro Wild-Passion d’Alban), Anthony Barrier up. Also, from the weekend, it was reported today that Ready Cash (8m Indy de Vive-Kidea-Extreme Dream) decisive victory in the UET Masters Series Finale ( purse 500,000 euro), raised his lifetime earnings to 4,239,300 euro, inching past retired French trotting icon Jag de Bellouet with 4,223,699. Converted to US dollars the Ready Cash bankroll is about $5.7 million, now above Varenne $5.63 million, Jag de Bellouet $5.6 million and Moni Maker with $5.58 million. Ready Cash’ sire is a son of Vikings Way by Bonefish while his dam is by a son of Florestan from a daughter of Workaholic. His inbreeding coefficient is 5.2%. The Criterium des 5 Ans winner Up And Quick (5m Buvetier d’Aunou-Fichtre- Quiton du Coral) smashed that event’s speed record with his 1.11.5kr win over 2700 meters. In 2010 Scoop d’Yuel set the previous mark of 1.12.7kr for this race. Royal Dream won the 2013 Prix d’Amerique in 1.11.9kr that had been the previous standard for the 2700 meter distance, turning start. Up And Quick’s sire is a son of Royal Prestige from the great mare Nesmile while the winners’ dam is by a son of Chambon P. His inbreeding coefficient is 1.7%. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

The French trotter Ready Cash is now the richest horse in harness racing history, with $5.71 million in purses when converted to U.S. dollars. The 8-year-old Ready Cash won the final of the European Trotting Masters at Vincennes last weekend to push his lifetime earnings past retired trotters Varenne and Moni Maker on the all-time money list. Varenne earned $5.63 million in his career while Moni Maker banked $5.58 million. Foiled Again is the richest pacer on the list, with $5.30 million. The 9-year-old Foiled Again on Monday night won his elimination for the Bobby Quillen Memorial at Harrington Raceway. He drew post eight in the eight-horse $223,500 final on Sept. 16. Ready Cash, a son of Indy De Vive-Kidea, has won 40 of 63 career races, including four of six this season. He won the prestigious Prix D'Amerique in 2011 and 2012 and finished second this year. He also is a two-time winner of the Group I Prix De France. He should not be confused with the North American pacer Ready Cash, who retired last year at the age of 14 with career earnings of $458,747. The trotter Ready Cash, who has never raced in North America, and Foiled Again both had their first million-dollar season in 2011; Ready Cash at the age of 6 and Foiled Again at the age of 7. Ready Cash earned a career-best $1.39 million last year and has topped $1.17 million this season. Foiled Again has earned $678,234 this year, making him the season's richest older pacer, and collected $1.20 million last season. He is the oldest pacer in history to have a million-dollar campaign. DRIVERS AND TRAINERS APPROACHING MILESTONES In the list below are drivers approaching wins or earnings milestones. Below that is a list of trainers who may be approaching win milestones. If you have any questions regarding this information, please email stats@ustrotting.com or call toll free 877-800-8782 ext. 4, Mon-Fri 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. .   Driver Wins               First Middle Last Name Suffix LTD Wins LTD Earnings Last Track Last Start Eric S Ledford   4997 $56,821,083 Mea 9/7/2013 Howard G Parker   4988 $45,525,303 PcD 9/7/2013 Norman Chris Boring   3979 $19,828,659 RP 7/6/2013 Howard E Davis Jr 3976 $30,468,483 Har 9/5/2013 Timothy W Curtin   2985 $20,936,317 May 6/6/2013 Patrick D Berry   2980 $27,305,541 TgDn 9/8/2013 David Floyd Carey   2974 $2,433,817 Truro 9/8/2013 Ronald L Cushing   1997 $7,456,820 Scar 9/8/2013 Steven C Wiseman   1996 $7,552,141 Aces 8/31/2013 Ron Paul Wrenn   1995 $6,069,816 HoP 9/4/2013 Robert H Shepherd   1993 $14,667,726 GRvr 9/6/2013 Rodney J Bolon   1992 $9,376,910 Mea 9/7/2013 Simon   Allard   1988 $15,314,242 TrRvs 9/8/2013 John Paul Cummings Jr 1983 $8,719,838 Btva 9/7/2013 Jerry G E Landess   1980 $2,037,837 Green 8/23/2013 Kelly R Sheppard   1971 $9,404,905 GRvr 8/28/2013 Charles M Conrad   998 $5,783,003 HoP 9/7/2013 Vaughan A Doyle   998 $781,064 Summ 9/8/2013 James R Mc Donald   997 $2,949,812 PPk 7/27/2013 DANIEL R                             OBRIAN        992 $2,122,046 GeoD 8/27/2013 Stephen K O'Toole   986 $2,423,974 PRc 9/3/2012 Robert                        L                             Sparling                                Jr 986 $5,216,173 Sar 9/7/2013 Clayton   Faurot Jr 981 $2,456,655 Mea 9/7/2013 Joseph   Ricco Jr 978 $3,727,744 MR 8/28/2013 Wilbur L Yoder   978 $6,379,122 Mea 9/7/2013 GORDEN A MCKNIGHT   977 $2,885,426 Sar 9/7/2013 John D Finn   975 $3,612,590 BmlP 9/8/2013 Darren R Crowe   975 $1,450,736 Invrn 9/8/2013 RONALD I MATHESON   972 $1,034,786 Summ 9/8/2013 Jeffrey A Smith   971 $2,730,304 Lex 9/7/2013 Rocky Joe Loney   971 $2,401,644 Lex 9/5/2013 Steven B Norris   970 $2,548,111 RidC 8/29/2013                 Driver earnings in U.S. dollars             First Middle Last Name Suffix LTD Wins LTD Earnings Last Track Last Start Luc R Ouellette   8535 $129,537,307 Moh 9/7/2013 Peter M Wrenn   9107 $59,838,946 HoP 9/7/2013 Paul G                             MacKenzie        7772 $39,945,820 GRvr 9/6/2013 James R Pantaleano   6128 $39,818,968 YR 9/7/2013 Raymond W Schnittker   2634 $39,747,717 TgDn 9/8/2013 Aaron Edward Merriman   5952 $29,761,193 ScD 9/7/2013 Michael A Forte   3263 $19,923,592 MR 6/3/2013 Norman Chris Boring   3979 $19,828,659 RP 7/6/2013 Jimmy W Takter   711 $19,811,728 VD 9/6/2013 Thomas D Strauss   2552 $19,687,609 GeoD 8/31/2013 Darrell L Coville   6565 $19,546,479 RidC 9/5/2013 Richard Lee Farrington   1250 $9,967,377 HoP 9/4/2013 Below that are trainers who may be approaching win milestones. USTA started tracking trainer statistics in 1991, so the trainers listed in green may have had training starts and wins prior to 1991, so the Life Wins column for those trainers may not be accurate. Trainer Approaching Wins Milestones   First Middle Last Name suffix Life Wins Life Earnings Last Track Last Start DOB John G Kina   1986 $5,999,288.00 RP 9/8/2013 3/1/1969 Jeffrey R Gillis   994 $19,698,203.00 Clntn 9/8/2013 10/1/1977 Roger S Welch   991 $13,043,343.00 BmlP 9/7/2013 9/22/1963 Matias S Ruiz   991 $3,713,760.00 PcD 9/7/2013 2/24/1958 Jeffery Lynn Cox   987 $6,286,877.00 ScD 9/6/2013 2/18/1955 Edgar R Clarke   983 $5,300,957.00 Stga 9/8/2013 12/6/1955 Guy   Gagnon   979 $4,999,278.00 RidC 9/5/2013 12/20/1968 James R Mc Donald   974 $4,558,300.00 PPk 7/27/2013 10/12/1955 by Ken Weingartner for USTA  

International column by Jerry Connors

The 2012 Championship Meet at the Meadowlands Racetrack will end with a bang - literally - on Friday, August 17. Fireworks, live music, eight stakes races, the Vernon/Meadowlands Drivers' Championship and unbelievable prize drawings are in store at the track's Summer Finale.

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