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Yonkers, NY---After finishing third in a Billings trot this afternoon at Monticello Raceway Monica Banca then traveled 90 miles to compete in a NAADA trot at Yonkers Raceway which proved fruitful for the talented trans- planted Norwegian when she guided Master of Excuses to a gate-to-wire 1:59.3 triumph over the Hilltop oval. In a field reduced to just five, Banca who started from the coveted pole position, sent her charge to the lead and had command in the :28.4 first quarter. Once clearly on top Banca tapped the brakes and eased her trotter past the halfway point in :59.3. Bob Davis, who also competed in the Billings at Monticello earlier in the day, was the first to challenge Banca and her charge when he moved Gianni off the pylons before the three quarters but Master Of Excuses wasn't having any part of it as the venerable trotter put together a :29.2 third quarter and opened up a three -length lead when the field rounded the final turn. As they headed for paydirt, Uriel and Annie Stoebe who were second with a covered trip, began to fade as the trailers moved forward. When the field straightened in the lane however, Master of Excuses was still three -lengths in front lead as Gianni and Davis were applying the pressure but they ran out of racetrack and had to settle for second money when Master Of Excuses tripped the final timer in 1:59.3 Third place went to Baltimor AS, driven by Bobby Ciavardini. Banca co-owns the winner with Rick Dane. Although it was only Banca's third winner this year, her eight seconds and four thirds in 23 starts boosted her seasonal UDR to .387. And it was the 25th winning drive for Ms Banca since she joined the amateur movement in 2013.. by John Manzi, for the NAADA Series

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, October 9, 2018- Draw the $1 million Yonkers International Trot by day, offer up the season-high exacta by night. When a third-over, 31-1 Prejudice (Jim Marohn Jr., $65) rolled past a first-up, 49-1 Big Turn On (Troy Beyer) in Tuesday's (Oct. 9th) $14,750, sixth-race pace, it blew up the tote board ( tote boards were actually harmed at the conclusion of this race). The result was a $2,143 exacta, Yonkers Raceway's highest of the season. Throw in 38-1 Mach On (Joe Bongiorno) and the triple returned $4,695, a neck separating the first three finishers. Prejudice, who entered all of 1-for-24 this season, turned in a season's-best 1:55 effort. The 5-year-old Western Terror gelding is Delaware co-owned by William Sartin & Mark Salerno and trained by Joe DeCarlo. Tonight at Yonkers Raceway the French-American Friendship Races began and will be followed by events at Monticello Raceway tomorrow (Wednesday) and at the Meadowlands on Friday. At the Hilltop oval it was Ladies Night in the first America v France Friendship Race when the USA's Monica Banca scored a one-length triumph with Life Well Lived in 1:58.3 while second place went to Delcrest Massey ,driven by France's Sandrine Oyer, and the ladies had bragging rights after they finished one-two. When the starter said go France's Jerome Malliard sent Ladys Big Stormont to the lead and they were quickly joined by the USA's Joe Faraldo with Tough Get Going and the two trotters raced side by side past the quarter in :28.3 and by the half in :57.4. But when they headed up the backside both horses showed the fatigue of the swift early fractions. It was there that Monica Banca moved Life Well Lived off the pylons and they trotted around Tough Get Going and up alongside Ladys Big Stormont and the two raced head to head past the third stanza in 1:28.1 and around the final turn before Life Well Lived cleared. Then as the leader headed for paydirt France's Sandrine Oyer had Delcrest Massey on Banca's back but that was as far as fthey could go and they had to settle for second money of the $17,500 purse. Third place went to Drazzmatazz, driven by France's Jean Marc Freyssenge. The race tonight certainly showed off the talents of the two ladies who were among the eight drivers who participated in the first Friendship event on American soil. Life Well Lived is owned by Bob Burgess and trained by Carmine Auciello. The 4-year-old Muscle Mass gelding paid $16.40. With four races still to go France leads the USA 22-20 by Frank Drucker and John Manzi, for Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY- The $15,000 final event of the 10-leg North American Amateur Drivers Association Trotting Series (NAADA) was raced at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday evening, May 24, and when the well-contested race was over Monica Banca walked away with all the marbles. The talented lady reined Master of Excuses to a 1-1/2 length triumph in a time of 1:58.1. It was the Scandinavian-native's first win in the series although her total of 36 points in the preliminaries was fourth best. In a race that was dominated by quick early speed the eventual winner picked up cover after the half and the kept moving forward. After the race began Wygant Prince (Paul Minore) was locked in an early sped duel with Soul Train (Joe Lee) and they were head-to-head when they passed the first stanza in a swift :27.3. No sooner had Wygant Prince cleared to the lead Dr John Kokinos moved Here Comes Numbers out to challenge and they were one-two as the timer flashed :58. After the half a host of trotters were on the move including Master of Excuses who got first call at the three quarters despite being three-deep. He was closely followed by Ladys Big Stormont with Alan Schwartz at the controls while Tomy Ciuffelli was looking for daylight with Someway Same Hall. But when the field came off the final turn Monica Banca and Master of Excuses had opened up a three length lead l and as they raced for the finish Ms Banca's charge hung tough and went on to victory. Ciuffetelli's trotter rallied to be second while Schwartz and the series point winner, Ladys Big Stormont, held on for the show dough. "This was a heck of a series" stated NAADA President Joe Faraldo. "We had 10 very competitive legs at both Yonkers and Monticello and the series was great for the amateur movement." On June 7th NAADA will sponsor summer trotting series with races at both Yonkers and Monticello Raceway weekly culminating in a $15,000 finale on August 16. by John Manzi for NAADA

Monticello, NY--It was Ladies Day in the harness racing Amateur contests at Monticello Raceway on Thursday (Oct. 5) when two of three races were won by members of the gentle sex. Jennifer Lappe won the Catskill Club's Pace and Monica Banca copped the second leg of the NAADA trots. Only a victory by Dave Yarock in the first NAADA Trot saved face for the boys. Lappe, who had harnessed 63 winners as a trainer thus far this season enjoyed her third driving victory of the year when she guided Lightning Strike to a 1:57.2 triumph finishing a head better than Fox Valley Leo, driven by Monica Banca Lappe and her pacer started from the pole position and enjoyed two hole journey behind Fox Valley Leo until overtaking him in the deep stretch. "It always helps when you have the rail because you have lots of options,"Lappe said after her victory."I sat patiently and it all worked out." Bob Davis took home the show dough in that contest with Sand Benelli. Lightning Strike is owned and trained by Bill Mintz. The veteran 9-year-old Cam Terrific gelding paid $12.20. Sent off as the odds-on favorite in their NAADA Trot Banca once again used the front-end route with Brandos Muscle Man but this time Banca's charge didn't falter in the lane and went on to a solid one length triumph in 2:00 over Tim Lizzi. Although driver Joe Lee and Tim Lizzi stalked the leader throughout the mile they didn't have enough in the tank to overtake the leader. "He's a tough old horse ",Banca said with a smile in the paddock after the race was completed."He just wants to go and I just kept feeding him his head and when he was challenged in the stretch he dug in and would let Tim Lizzi pass him." Peter Kleinhans finished third with Toss Cartwright. Banca co-owns the winner with the Rock & Roll Stable. With his victory the 9-year-old Muscles Yankee gelding raised his career earnings to over $480,000. He's trained by Rick Dane, Jr. It was Banca's eighth driving victory this year. Although both Lappe and Banca had a mount in the first NAADA Trot the girls couldn't deny Dave Yarock his day in the sun as both finished out of the money in that event. When the gate sprung Yarock set sails with Mr Ridgetaker and they made every pole a winning one en route to a 1:59.2 victory. Despite being stalked by Ladys Big Stormont and driver Alan Schwartz ,Yarock wasn't going to be denied. "He's really a handful and he's not the best gaited trotter around, either. I had to hold him together right from the start and keep from fighting him so he wouldn't make a break,"Yarock explained. "He's a fast horse but not an easy one to manage." Schwartz's trotter finished a length behind the winner in second place while Sam's Honeybee rallied from far back to garner the show dough. Yarock owns Mr Ridgetaker who's trained by Dawn Devaux. He returned a $13.20 mutuel. by John Manzi for NAADA & CADC

Monica Banca doesn't drive often but when she does she's a force to be reckoned with. Today, (Thurs. Sept 21) in a division of the NAADA Trotting Series at Monticello Raceway Ms. Banca went to post for the 13th time this season and logged her seventh harness racing seasonal driving victory when she scored a 1:59.4 triumph with Brandos Muscle Man. After settling in the three hole after the wings of the mobile gate folded Banca, was content to follow the leaders until Joe Lee, who was traveling along near the back of the pack moved Tim Lizzi off the pylons as the field headed to the halfway point. That challenge precipitated a move from Banca who was moved her trotter out to challenge the pacesetter Ladys Big Stormont (Alan Schwartz). When they rounded the clubhouse turn for the final time Brandos Muscle Man had command and braced for Wygant Prince and driver Paul Minore who moved out from behind Schwartz's trotter and ranged alongside Brandos Muscle Man. as they headed for the three quarters. They raced one-two around the final turn and in the lane it appeared Wygant Prince would trot by the leader but that was not to happen as Brandos Muscle Man Dug in and rebuffed Wygant Prince to score a neck victory. Three lengths farther back was Tim Lizzie in third place. "My horse raced real good last week when we finished second beaten by just a head," Banca said after the race "Today I moved earlier than I wanted to so I wouldn't get locked in, but Brandos was strong and trotted to the lead. When we headed for home Wygant Prince began gaining ground but my horse dug in and wouldn't let him pass." Banca co-owns the Muscles Yankee 9-year old gelding with the Rock and Roll Stable. Trained by Rick Dane, Jr. Bandos Muscle Man paid $7.50. In the other NAADA split Dave Yarock used the front-end route for a trip to the winners circle with Mr Ridgetaker. After starting from the two-hole Yarock got away with a fairly soft :29.2 first quarter and had his sights set on racing on the front-end which could easily be determined when Alan Schwartz and Grand Vision).came alongside near the quarter pole and he kept them on the limb They raced one-two to the halfway point with the order remaining the same as they trotted by the three quarters in 1:30.3. When the field came off the final turn Mr Ridgetaker had three lengths on field and cruised home an easy winner "He raced good last week when we finished fourth (by length and a half) but today he was at the top of his game,"Yarock said referring to Mr Ridgetaker. "We had a better post this week and he was strong the whole mile." Sam's Honeybee with Tony Verruso aboard, snuck up the passing lane late to garner second money while Jennifer Lappe finished third with Fox Valley Steffen. Mr Ridgetaker, also owned by Yarock, is trained by Dawn Devaux. He returned a $10.20 mutuel. John Manzi

Score one for the president... the Billings president, that is. At Monticello Raceway on the ides of June Billings Series president, Tony "the Capo" Verruso. took no prisoners en route to a gate to wire 2:00.2 victory with Flirting Duezy in an east region haarness racing Billings trot. When the starter said 'go' Verruso hustled the 8-year-old Victory Sam mare to the lead and kept moving to allow the trailing horses to find a spot along the pylons. After leading the field by the first quarter in:29:2 Verruso let his mare have her head and she trotted the next quarter in 31 seconds which kept anyone from moving out to challenge her lead. They had two lengths on the field as Flirting Duezy trotted by the third stanza in 1:30.2 and when the field headed for home she was still the strong horse and rebuffed a late charge by The Franchise and driver Bob "the Headhunter" Hechkoff. She's All Muscles finished third for "Buffalo Bob" Davis. "Knowing that my mare is quick off the gate I sent her to the front and tried to get the trailing horses in line behind us. And it worked out just like I planned. She's game on the lead. Back in mid-May, while on the engine, she won handily in 1:58.3", Verruso said after race. Owned by Betsy Phillips and Carl Gillespie and trained by Gillespie, Flirting Duezy was dismissed by the betting public and paid $22.60 for win. For the current Billings president it was his 67th career driving victory. Also on the June 15th card, another talented female driver, Monica Banca, bided her time and then rallied Fox Valley Leo to a 1:58.3 victory in the Catskill Amateur Club Pace. "I had a good trip," Banca said when she returned to the paddock after her victory. She gunned her pacer to the lead from the five-hole and then allowed Joe Lee and TKR'S Metro Specs to take command before the first quarter timer flashed :28.3. With Lee's pacer showing the way and Banca's pacer snug in the two hole ,they raced one-two until the final strides in the deep stretch when Fox Valley Leo rallied down the passing lane to a head triumph over TKR's Metro Specs. Kennanskingwilliam was third for Jerry Fielding. "I was glad to let Joe's horse take the lead and sit behind him," Banca added. "And I think because I had cover my horse was the strongest at the end of the mile." Fox Valley Leo is owned and trained by Rick Dane. The 7-year-old Yankee Skyscraper gelding paid $12.60 for win. And for the Norwegian-born Banca it was her third driving victory in just four seasonal starts by John Manzi for the Billings Series and the Catskill Amateur Club's race

Saturday, June 11, was Ladies Night at Tioga Downs in the CKG Billings Amateur Driving series when the ladies finished one-two in the $6000 trotting event, Monica "the Norwegian Flash" Banca won the contest with Brandos Muscle Man and "Hurricane Hannah" Miller was the runner-up with Shanghai Jack in the 1:57.1 trotted mile. "It was so much fun" Banca related after her three- length triumph. "We claimed him (Brandos Muscle Man) at Yonkers (Raceway) a while back but this was the first time I had the pleasure of driving him. He's such a classy old guy and the best horse I have ever driven." And drive him she did. When the wings of the gate folded Banca sent her charge to the lead from the five- hole and they gained command in the 28-second first quarter with "Hurricane Hannah" and Shanghai Jack tucked in neatly in the two-hole as they passed that stanza. From there, the ladies traveled one-two around the Tioga Downs five-eighths mile oval with Brandos Muscle Man showing the way and Shanghai Jack tight on Banca's back. But as the leaders straightened for home Banca's trotter opened daylight on her immediate challenger and drew off to a three-length victory. "I thought it was kind of strange that we were sent off as the 1-9 favorite when we weren't even the morning line favorite in the race," Banca related. "But my horse was so good that all I had to do was sit still and he did the rest. Brandos Muscle Man is such a classy old veteran that my 14-year old son sat up behind him and trained him last week." After finishing second "Hurricane Hannah" Miller told Banca that she wished the ladies could be one-two every week. Third place in the Saturday night Billings contest went to Buck ID driven by John J "Jersey Boy" Turok. Banca co-owns the Brandos Muscle Man with the Rock And Roll Stable. He's trained by Rick Dane, Jr. and the veteran trotter paid just $2.30 for win. For the former Norwegian miss it was her third seasonal triumph and 14th since she started driving in the U.S. in 2013. John Manzi

YONKERS, NY, Wednesday, October 28, 2015 -- This past weekend, Yonkers Raceway's horsemen, as well as others from the harness racing community, went "Racing for a Cure"...and everybody won. The initiative, led by trainer Monica Banca and Kristen (Mrs. Jason) Bartlett, raised nearly $19,000 ($18,910, to be precise) for October's Breast Cancer Awareness Month. That figured included a $3,000 donation made by the North American Amateur Drivers Association. Last Saturday evening (Oct. 24th), "Racing for a Cure" found any number of Yonkers' trainers and drivers--along with other prominent members and businesses involved in the harness industry--joining forces, with all funds raised benefitting the Frisco, TX, based National Breast Cancer Foundation ( To the surprise of no one, paddock participation was solid. Raffle tickets were been sold for the past month, with the big number--a pink Gorilla sulky donated by Chad Foulk--won by Maine-based trainer Lisa Watson. Second- and third-prize winners (Jennifer Sabot and Shane Taggart) each took home (or to the barn) a complete Walsh harness set, donated by Barbara Boese. All winning horses that night earned spiffy pink blankets, underwritten by any number of benefactors, while the pink whips carried by the drivers last Saturday were donated by Karin Karlsson of Divine Equine. "Monica and I are so appreciative of all the support," Kristen Bartlett said. "We even received donations from Canada. It's such a worthwhile cause, and we're happy to do anything we can do to help." Those requesting additional information are encouraged to e-mail either Ms. Banca ( or Mrs. Bartlett ( About NBCF... The National Breast Cancer Foundation was founded in 1991 by breast cancer survivor Janelle Hail as a commitment to help women around the world by educating them about breast cancer and the importance of early detection. NBCF's home on the web is located at Frank Drucker

A banner day for the sport of amateur harness racing climaxed when "Lady Monica" Banca and Bob "the Headhunter" Hechkoff each won their respective $6000 divisions of the CKG Billings Amateur Driving Series at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday night (May 28). Banca won on the betting card while Hechkoff's triumph came in a non-wagering trot. Earlier in the day at, Monticello Raceway, "Hot-Handed Hannah" Miller won two amateur events, a NAADA trot and a Catskill Amateur Series pace, marking the first time that amateur drivers--and there were four-- did double duty racing at one track in the afternoon and at another in the evening. Once again Banca's victory was on the betting card at Yonkers Raceway and it came with the same horse (Meadowview Arny) that she used to defeat a team of visiting French amateurs in an international competition a month ago. As she did against the visiting French, Banca wasn't content to follow anyone and moved her horse to the lead after getting looped on the first turn. Once on the engine she kept up the strong pace and she and Meadowview Arny trotted through fractions of :29, :58.4 and 1:28.2 before going on to a length victory over Wygant Prince and driver "Coach Paul" Minore. Third place went to Rev It Now driven by Hannah Miller who was looking for a perfect day of three wins in three drives that day. Banca, Norwegian by birth, notched her second driving victory in five seasonal starts. The winner is owned by Joe Faraldo and Chris Wittstruck and trained by Richard Banca. He paid $3.40 for win. In the non-wagering split Hechkoff, as he usually does, sent his trotter, No Recess, to the lead from the seven hole and they had two lengths on the field as they passed the first stanza. Hechkoff seemed comfortable on the lead but as the field headed to the halfway point David "Proud Poppa" Glasser pulled the three hole with Csi What's My Name when he heard Dave "Steady As" Yarock coming with Rompaway Alvin. Glasser's trotter and No Recess and side by side around the paddock turn and up the backside and they were still one-two heading for home. But No Recess proved stronger and turned back Csi What's My Name for a one length victory in a 2:01.1 clocking. Mark "Shoprite" Schullstrom picked up the show dough with Catalyst. Hechkoff's RBH Veentures owns the winner whose trained by Kyle Spagnola.For Hechkoff it marked his seventh winning drive of the season and 61st of his 15 year amateur driving career. by John Manzi for the Billings Series  

When Maurice Chevalier sang "thank heaven for little girls for they grow bigger every day"; little did NAADA president Joe Faraldo know how true those words were until the USA-French Friendship Competition was completed at The Meadowlands on Friday night (April 24) when America's Hannah Miller won the final leg of the event which vaulted the USA team to a harness racing victory 107-96. Miller reined Jacks to Open to a 1:57.1 triumph which was the second conquest by a girl in the four -race competition. The USA's Monica Banca had won the first leg at Yonkers Raceway last Tuesday (April 21). The girls really came through for us," Faraldo admitted, and then added that winning or losing never really comes into play because amateur racing is a good excuse for human relations. But don't get me wrong, winning is still preferred." After the French team was licensed in New Jersey they had a tour of the new Meadowlands grandstand before they put on their battle gear and readied for the competition in the first race on the betting card. Going into the race it appeared the USA team had the stronger steeds in the 10-race contest and although Hannah Miller's horse got the late money and was sent away as the favorite it took a confident drive by the young lady to get him to the winners circle. When the wings of the staggered starting gate folded Bob Hechkoff gunned his Bambino Hall to the lead from the 10-hole and they had control in a :28.2 opening stanza. Meanwhile Miller and Jacks To Open found a position along the pylons in the back of the field. Hechkoff was forced to keep after his trotter because Picture Perfect (Steve Oldford) was getting plenty of fresh air challenging while on the limb. Smartly, Ms Miller moved Jacks To Open second-up a behind cover supplied by Picture Perfect at the halfway point as the timer flashed :56.4. Oldford's trotter kept going forward which also moved Jacks To Open closer to the lead as the field passed the three quarters. On the final turn Miller moved her charge three-deep and they trotted around Picture Perfect and then took aim at Bambino Hall who had scooted away to a four-length lead at the top of the long homestretch. Perhaps it was the quick pace in the early going that took a toll on the Hechkoff's trotter but as they headed for paydirt Jacks To Open ranged alongside the leader and then spurted away to score a one length triumph over Bambino Hall. Third place was garnered by 55-1 long shot Bloomfieldcantifly, driven by yet another girl, France's Sophie Blanchetiere. The winner, owned by KDM Stables and trained by Nick Surick, paid $4.40 for win. Hannah Miller continues to ride her amazing hot streak. Her record this season now stands at six wins in 21 starts with 12 of those 21 races resulting in an in-the-money finish. In her fledgling career, Miller has won 15 of 41 starts. After her victory which gave the USA the upper hand against their French counterparts Hannah was asked how she felt. "I feel great now but I was a little worried before the race because Perfect Picture won in (1):55.2 last week", she said. "But the race set-up right for me. When he (Perfect Picture) got hung out I saw an opportunity and took advantage of it by moving second-up at the half and then following cover all the way to the top of the stretch. In the lane my horse was the strongest and at the finish we were the best." Now that the competition is over, on Saturday night (April 25) NAADA will treat their guests to a boat ride around the Statue of Liberty on the World Yacht. Then on Sunday the French amateurs will head for home. by John Manzi for NAADA

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, April 21, 2015--She was a late replacement, but harness racing driver  Monica Banca was more than on time when it counted. Filling in for originally-scheduled participant Robert Krivelin, Ms. Banca handily defended the honor of both country and gender, guiding Meadowview Arny ($7.40) to a decisive Tuesday afternoon win in Yonkers Raceway's French-American Friendship Competition. Leading at every pylon in the mile-and-one-quarter, $15,200 event, pole-sitting "Arny" threw down intervals of :31.2, 1:02.1, 1:33.1 and 2:03, before finishing his work day 3¼ lengths in front of 9-10 favorite Amalfi Coast (Peter Kleinhans), who closed from ninth in the 10-horse field. The mile-and-quarter went in 2:32.2. French drivers Romain Poree (Sun of a Victory), Christophe Roszak (Prince Lauxmont) and Michel Poirier (He'sgotlegs) finished third, fourth and fifth, respectively. France's Sophie Blanchetiere, the other woman in this competition, finished seventh with 87-1 outsider Mr. Invincible. For second choice Meadowview Arny, a 7-year-old Ken Warkentin gelding trained by Ms. Banca's partner, Rick Dane Jr., for owner Stephanie Mitchell, it was his fourth win in 11 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $15.80, with the triple returning $66. The competition was the last of five races during the French-centric matinee program, which again featured overflow trotting fields at the added, 1¼-mile distance. "It was my plan to try and be in front," Banca said. "He's such a big, strong horse and doesn't mind the distance races. I'm just so excited." Ms. Banca, a native of Norway, won her 10th career race as a driver. Ms. Banca, it should be noted, is one of the mover and shakers for the Raceway's initiatives in the fight again breast cancer. Last fall, she organized pink blanket sponsorships for winning horses, along with pink whips carried by drivers. Frank Drucker

The sixth and final leg of the North American Amateur Drivers Association Trotting Series was presented at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday April 17 and when the non-wagering contests were finished Bobby Krivelin and Dave Yarock emerged victorious in their respective splits; Krivelin with Current Crisis in 1:59.1 and Yarock with Nowerland Nathan in 2:00.1. Krivelin's win was his third in the trotting events and for Yarock it was his second. In his $6000 contest Krivelin settled his trotter in along the pylons in the early going and then used the overland route to wear down the leader Get Packin (Bob Hechkoff) as the field rounded the final turn. From there Current Crisis then rolled on to a four-length victory over Northemedo Wine Guy, driven by Tony Verruso. Get Packin held on for third money. Yarock's victory was somewhat similar to Krivelin's in that he raced along the pylons until the field headed for the half and with a move to the outside Nowerland Nathan and Yarock wore down the pace-setter Whatnblazes (Dave Offenberg) and gained command by the three quarters. Then, as the field headed for home only Nowerland Nathan's margin of victory was in doubt as Yarock's trotter finished three lengths ahead of Offenberg's. Krivelin was the series point champion with 47 while Yarock was second best with 36. Trailing Krivelin and Yarock in points and now eligible to the final are; David Glasser (30), Bob Hechkoff (29), Joe Faraldo (26), Tony Verruso (25); Bob Davis (23) and Paul MInore (20). However, should any of the top eight in points fail to enter the final then the remaining driver(s) with the highest point totals---Dave Offenberg (18), Monica Banca (17) and Alan Charles (10)--- are next in line to participate. The $14,000 NAADA Trotting Series Final will be contest on Thursday, April 24 again at Yonkers Raceway. by John Manzi, for NAADA

David Glasser and Paul Minore were each victorious in the respective divisions of the North American Amateur Drivers Association's (NAADA) Trotting Series at Freehold Raceway on Friday (Apri11).Glasser won with his own Grecale AS in a time of 2:00 and returned a whopping $41.60 win payoff, while Minore scored with his Wygant Prince in 1:58.1. Glasser's trotter went a solid mile after being first-up at the half and then rallying to the lead as the field passed the three quarters. Once on top Grecale AS coasted home an easy two length winner over favored Northmedo Wine Guy and Tony Verruso, giving Glasser his second victory in the series. His 28 points in the series is currently second best behind Bobby Krivelin's 35 but with only one leg remaining at Yonkers on April 17 Glasser is assured eligibility in the $14,000 series finale which will also to be raced at Yonkers Raceway, but on April 24. In his division Minore's Wygant Prince went an eye-opening trip and won in 1:58.1 after a two-hole journey behind Bob Hechkoff with Get Packin. That mile caused a little stir among some of the professionals drivers who were watching that amateur race and one was overheard saying with amazement after the 1:58.1 mile, "that's race horse time!". Minore has driven in only two series legs and with just 16 points he'll need a good showing on Thursday to move up and earn a spot in the series finale. Those drivers with the most points in the six-leg trotting will earn a berth in the $14,000 Final, that is, if they all enter. The current leaderboard is as follows: Bobby Krivelin (35), David Glasser (28), Dave Yarock (24), Bob Hechkoff(24) Bob Davis (21), Joe Faraldo (21) Tony Verruso (18), Monica Banca (17) Paul Minore (16) and Dave Offenberg (11). "I'd like to make it clear that the drivers who are among the top eight in points doesn't assure them a spot in the final unless they enter. So it's a good idea if someone is ninth or tenth in points they still should enter for the final race just in case someone in the top ten (in points) doesn't. And should that happen, the next highest in points gets first call," explained NAAADA president Joe Faraldo. by John Manzi, for NAADA

Dave Yarock and Bob Davis each were victorious in their respective $6000 divisions in the third leg of the North American Amateur Drivers Association's spring trotting series at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday (March 27) night. It was the first win for each driver in the six week series. In his event, Yarock, and his own Nowerland Nathan left softly from the two home and he was content to let Georgie Newell and Swift Kid take command and Bob Heckhoff and Tremendous Hit fall into the two hole in front of him. Yarock sat cool in third position until the backside where he moved his 8-year-old gelding out to challenge and by the time they circled the final turn they had command. In the lane Nowerland Nathan trotted off to a one length victory in a time of 2:01.1 as Currant Crisis and Bobby Krivelin rallied to be second. Monica Banca and Hardrockinjessica took home the show dough while Tremendous Hit and Swift Kid faded and finished fifth and sixth respectively. In the other split Davis' trotter, Rose Run Nash, won more convincingly. After a slow start where the pole horse ,Rose Run Nash, was four lengths off the gate when the starter said "go", Davis and his charge ended-up sixth at the quarter in :29.1. "Trainer Danny Gill told me if I put him (Rose Run Nash) on the gate he might get hot on me so I decided to lay back a bit so he would be calmer," Davis explained about his trotter's slow start. As the field moved toward the halfway point Davis angled his trotter to the outside behind cover supplied by Alan Schwartz, with Bertos Angel and Joe Faraldo, with Rodeo Red. Faraldo moved three deep up the backside and gained the lead at the third stanza in 1:31.2 and although they held their position until the top of the stretch Rodeo Red ran out of gas and faded. David Glasser with Carbon Footprint were on the lead throughout and he was the one who kept the field stacked. But in the lane they trotted by Rodeo Red and earned second money while Faraldo and Rodeo Red finished third in the 2:02.3 clocked mile. "Once we got away he (Rose Run Nash) was a pleasure to drive and he finished real strong," a smiling Bob Davis said after his victory. With a victory in his first start in the event David Glasser now has command of the leaderboard while Davis who made his first start is now one-for-one in the series. For, Yarock, a financial planner from Tenafly, NJ, it was his 44th amateur driving victory while Davis, a self- employed businessman from Saratoga Springs, NY, notched his 13th. by John Manzi, for the North American Amateur Drivers Association

Six weeks ago USTA Director Joe Faraldo was leading a contingent to Vincennes Racetrack in Paris, France with the specific intention of sealing an international simulcast agreement between the U.S. Trotting Association and the French Trotting Organization (Le Trot). He was joined on that endeavor by Yonkers Raceway president, Tim Rooney, Alex Dadoyan, the executive director of the Standardbred Owners Association of New York , Mike Kimelman, president of Blue Chip Farms as well as a interested group of SOA of NY members and associates. Last night (March6) at Yonkers Raceway Faraldo won the second division of a trotting series sponsored by the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA). He shared the limelight with David Glasser, a business professional who recently re-joined the amateur driving movement. For both gentlemen drivers their victories were their first of the 2014 season. Faraldo's win came behind his own Rodeo Red in a time of 2:02.4 while Glasser won with JS Miss Linda, a trotting mare that he owns in a 2:03.1 clocking,. In his contest, Faraldo sat back off the early pace and then rallied in the deep stretch to a length victory after trailing the Carbon Footprint (Dave Yarock ) by three lengths as the field headed for home. Yarock's trotter held on for the place money and Tony Verruso took home the show dough with Sam's Honeybee. "When my horse is right he's a nice trotter and he was right tonight," Faraldo said after his victory and then added with tongue in cheek, "Even a blind squirrel gets an acorn every now and then." For Faraldo the victory was the 138th of his amateur driving career. En route to his victory Glasser used a two hole journey with JS Miss linda to overtake the pace-setter Get Packin (Bob Hechkoff) as the field rounded the final turn and then they went on to score a two length triumph in 2:03.1. Get Packin was second best and Hardrockinjessica finished third for Monica Banca. Glasser,47, has been in and around in harness racing his entire life since his parents Arthur and Evelyn Glasser owned and raced standardbreds for decades. It was his 20th career driving victory. Glasser began his amateur career in 1980 and except for a few seasons he never drove more than six races a year. Since 1991 he has driven just 28 times and his last victory came during the 1991campaign. and it was said that he truly celebrated his latest triumph. "I did some celebrating last night since this win was a longtime coming," Glasser said. By John Manzi for the North American Amateur Driving Association  

With the completion of the final two preliminary legs of this year's North American Amateur Drivers Association's Charity Trotting Series held at Yonkers Raceway on December 12th, the field of drivers is now set for the $12,000 finale to be raced at Yonkers Raceway on December 19. Last night (Dec. 12) previous leg winners, Paul Minore and Dr. John Kokinos, each emerged victorious, Kokinos for the fourth time and Minore for the second. Kokinos, with Jennifer Lappe's Impressive Earl, trotted to the front in their $6,000 split and rebuffed all challenges en route to a 1:59.4 victory over Ipo Blue Chip and driver Steve Oldford. Third place went to Bob Davis up behind Ilari. For Doctor John, a veterinarian by trade, his victory added another 11 points to his totals and he finishes with 59 points and the points championship in the seven- leg, three-track trotting series which began on October 17 at Monticello Raceway. Freehold Raceway was also a participant in the series. In his $6,000 split Paul Minore, a retired high school coach who's most famous pupil was Carl Lewis, took no prisoners and went down the road to score a 1:59.3 victory with his own Wygant Prince. Monica Banca with Leave Your Mark finished a length behind the winner in second place while Bob Hechkoff got Tremendous Hit home for third money. As a results of those races the top eight in series points earned a berth in the $12,000 Final. Behind Kokinos and eligible to start if they choose to enter are; Paul Minore (40 points), Monica Banca (34), Bob Davis (24), Dave Offenberg (23), Bob Krivelin , Bob Hechkoff, and Dave Yarock, each with 21 points. If any of the aforementioned don't enter it opens up for those next in line in points totals which includes; Tony Verruso (18), Gerry Fielding (17), Steve Oldford, ( 13), Kelly Walker 12 and Alan Schwartz (11). When the series finale is completed, Joe Faraldo, the president of the North American Amateur Drivers Association, will again make a substantial donation from the organization to a worthwhile charity soon to be announced. By John Manzi  

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