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Trainer Richard Westerink's Timoko, a winner of over €2.68 million, leads Sunday's Gr. I Gran Prix de Wallonie field at Mons Ghlin. Bjorn Goop will team this favorite in the €180,000 purse UET Masters Series event. Uhlan du Val, Roi du Lupin and Pascia'Lest are the likely closest rivals. August 10, 2014 Mons Ghlin (BE), Gran Prix de Wallonie, Gr. I International UET Masters Series, €180,000 purse, 2300 meters autostart, 9 starters Horse in post-position order, driver/trainer, career earnings in euros, country Olmo Holz, Christophe Martens, Vincent Martens, 524,696, Italy Pascia'Lest, Roberto Andreghetti, Thierry Duvaldestin, 983,772, Italy Paladin Bleu, Bernard Piton, Lois Thieulent, 769,610, FR Roi du Lupin, Anthony Barrier, J-P Marmion, 1,708,845, FR Timoko, Bjorn Goop, Richard Westerink, 2,689,690, FR Uhlan du Val, Cedrik Megissier driver/trainer, 837,890, FR Deuxieme Picsous, Jos. Verbeeck, F. Lejon, 618,469, SWE Onyx d'Em, Rik Dupuydt, Mme. C. DeSoete, 706,121, FR Oibambam Effe, Salvatore Carre trainer/driver, 337,542, Italy Separately, following a poor effort under saddle this week at Enghien, it was announced that former great international speedster Rapide Lebel will likely be retired. Both trainer Guarato and driver Eric Raffin reportedly stated that his career should end, albeit final decision rests with the owner. The nine year-old gelded son of Ginger Somolli earned €1,816,922 with three Gr. I career victories and a speed record of 1.09.4kr. Thomas H. Hicks  

At this point many two-year-olds have a couple of starts in them, so it’s time to marry personal observations with wild speculation and project which ones will be stepping up to win the Cup, Jug and Hambletonion next year. This is by no means a definitive list of the best of the best; as a matter of fact I’m going out of my way to include some by off-brand stallions. That being said, here are a few early standouts. Artspeak is a Western ideal colt out of the Artsplace mare, The Art Museum. The Western Ideals have fallen on hard times at the sales of late, relatively speaking, but Brittany threw $100,000 at this guy, which matched the top price for any of his paternal brothers in North America. He has won both of his NJSS starts for Scott Zeron and trainer Tony Alagna, in dominant fashion. On Pace Day he came first over to win in 1:52.3 at odds of 3/5 at the Meadowlands. Western Ideal has given us the outstanding performers and game changing sires Rocknroll Hanover and American Ideal, as well as Always A Virgin and Big Jim. His 2013 crop moves on to the slugfest that is the PASS next year. Stacia Hanover, the winner of the $100,000 NJSS final for freshman pacing fillies, is also by Western Ideal. The $35,000 Harness Breeders purchase is trained by veteran Steve Elliott and, like Artspeak, driven by Scott Zeron. She has two other wins in the restricted class, aside from the high-dollar final which she won in 1:53.4 at odds of 3/5. Yankee Bounty is a two-year-old gelding by the enigmatic Artiscape stallion, Yankee Cruiser. His dam is the Allamerican Native mare Yankee Bootleg. This isn’t a combination that screams early speed. Yes, Yankee Cruiser did give is the current king of the pacing ranks, Sweet Lou, who held world records at two and three, as well as the rejuvenated speed demon Dancin Yankee, but for the most part this stallion was up against it in Pennsylvania. Yankee Bounty, a $21,000 Harness Breeders purchase, has won both of his starts in impressive fashion. He won splits of the Pennsylvania All Stars and the Albatross for Corey Callahan and trainer Kevin Lane. Yankee Cruiser stands his first year in Ohio in 2014. Bob Ben And John is one of the wave of impressive colts from the first crop of 2009 two-year-old division champ Sportswriter. Casie Coleman, who trained the son of Artsplace, and has been the leading cheerleader for his initial offering, plucked him from the Lexington sale for a modest $17,000. His dam is the Cambest mare, My Best Girl. This colt made his first pari-mutuel start last week in a $70,000 OSS-Gold leg at Mohawk. He was an easy winner by three in 1:53 at odds of 2/1 for Chris Christoforou. Sportswriter is absolutely killing it in the freshman pacing division of the Ontario Sire Stakes; he’s taking all the air; none of the others are on the same planet. SBSW shook the Pennsylvania program to its foundation with his first crop, but what’s happening with Sportswriter in his restricted program may be more dramatic. Shadow Play impressed us last year with his first crop, but he hasn’t gone on to be a factor in the open realm with his sophomores. We’ll wait and see if Sporty, a key player from the stressed Adios line, makes his presence felt outside of Ontario. Sassa Hanover is a filly from the first crop of Rock N Roll Heaven. Ron Burke bought her at Lexington for $50,000. Sassa’s dam, Sayo Hanover, is half to the very fast Shadyshark Hanover. Jim Morrill drover her to an easy two length win in a NYSS race at Monticello on the July 4. She won in 1:56.3 with plenty to spare. And two of her paternal sisters—She’s Heavenly and Band Of Angels—also won top dollar splits of the sire stakes that day. Heaven was held in high esteem at the sales, and thus far he is fulfilling his promise.   Dragon Eddy is a two-year-old gelding—aren’t they all—by Dragon Again, a stallion known more for throwing rugged long lasting types like Foiled Again, Atochia and Aracache Hanover than he is as a sire of early speed. My Little Dragon won her division at two, but she was an exception. Well, Eddy is something of an outlier himself. He brought $42,000 at Lexington, which is on the pricey side for Dragon Again, who now stands in Ohio. John Buttenschoen trains and Mike Simons drives. At the end of June Eddy won a split of the Pennsylvania All Starts in 1:54.3 at Pocono, and he went on to win a division of the Albatross in an eye opening 1:52.4 at odds of 2/5 at the Meadows on July 8. Mission Brief is a brown Muscle Hill filly who opened a lot of eyes when she took her $100,000 final of the NJSS by 13 lengths in 1:53.3 for Yanick Gingras and Ron Burke. This was an improvement on her previous start, where she only won by ten. Her dam Southwind Serena is by the great trotter Varenne. Mission Brief was a $150,000 Lexington purchase. Look out! The Bank is a Donato Hanover colt out of 2008 three-year-old division winner, Lantern Kronos. He won a split of the Pennsylvania All Stars for Jimmy Takter on July 4th and broke stride while leading on the last turn as the 1/9 favorite in a division of the Hickory Pride at The Meadows this week. Again, Takter drove. Uncle Lasse, a full brother to Shake It Cerry and Solvato, is another very promising Donato colt in the Takter Barn. He also won on July 4. Yesterday he was beaten in a quick 1:56.3 split of the Hickory Pride by the Cantab Hall colt Billy Flynn, driven to perfection by Brett Miller. Possess The Will and Your So Vain notwithstanding, Donato has pretty much been all filly no colt to this point. If this pair is turned over to Gingras or Pierce they could change that in a hurry. Honor And Serve, a Donato colt out of 2008 freshman division winner and world record holder Honorable Daughter, is another who might turn the tide. He just took a split of the Hickory Pride for Dave Palone and Jim Campbell. Royal Deceptor is one of numerous offspring of the New York stallion RC Royalty that sold at the Morrisville sale. The success of last year’s Hambletonion winner, Royalty For Life, inspired many to look favorably upon the eleven-year-old siring son of Credit Winner. Cheryl and Michael McGivern took this brown colt home for $11,000. Royal Deceptor won all three of his qualifiers, then went out and won a split of the NYSS in a track record 1:59.3 at Buffalo Raceway for Michael McGivern. Gatka is a big, rugged filly from the first crop of seven-year-old Hambletonion winner Muscle Massive, whose big brother Muscle Mass met with success in Ontario and has since been relocated to New York. Gatka is a sister to Ake Svanstedt’s Muscle Hill filly Heaven’s Door, who won the $100,000 NJSS sophomore final and finished second behind Shake It Cerry in the Del Miller. She won a division of the PA All Stars at The Meadows in 1:56 at 2/5 and last week she took a split of the Meadow Gladys with ease in 1:57.1 at 1/5.  Billy Flynn, a $120,000 Lexington purchase by Steffan Lind, is by Cantab Hall, arguably the best trotting stallion in North America. Another brown colt—there seems to be a run on them—he is out of the Enjoy Lavec mare Zeta Jones and was bred by Brittany farms. Billy took a split of the PA All Stars by six lengths in 1:57.2 at Pocono earlier this month and he beat the highly regarded Centurion ATM and Uncle Lasse in a division of the Hickory Pride. Brett Miller drives. Wild Honey is proving to be a $35,000 bargain for Jimmy Takter. The daughter of Cantab Hall was a close second to Gatka Hanover in that one’s first start and, like Gatka, won a split of the Meadow Gladys at The Meadows, for Yanick Gingras. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

East Rutherford, NJ - No fewer than seven major Grand Circuit stakes will populate the Saturday night card at The Meadowlands, led by the track's signature race, The Meadowlands Pace.   The all-star lineup begins with a pair of high-stakes preps for trotting's top prizes, the August 2 Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks.   Race four is the $317,000 Stanley Dancer Memorial three-year-old colt trot which will be the stage for last year's top freshman Father Patrick to battle Trixton who has emerged as a worthy adversary this season. It is the first time these two have met, the occasion made even more intriguing by the fact that both are trained in the Jimmy Takter stable.   Oddsmaker Darin Zoccali has Father Patrick (Yannick Gingras) listed as a strong morning line favorite at 4/5 from post nine, while Trixton is at 3/1 from post twelve in the second tier with trainer Takter aboard.   The $213,500 Delvin Miller Memorial for sophomore trotting fillies also pits last year's finest against emerging talent. Shake It Cerry was clearly the best of a very talented crop last season, easily winning year end awards for the Takter stable and regular driver Ron Pierce. She has transitioned successfully to sophomore status winning four of five starts this season and is the 9/5 choice from post seven.   Her only loss required the world record 1:51.3 effort by Designed To Be at Pocono last month. It was the second time Designed To Be has assaulted the record books, having taken the two-year-old title with her 1:52.2 mile last fall in Lexington. She will have Brian Sears aboard for trainer Julie Miller on Saturday.   The remarkably fast Cooler Schooner is the fastest freshman trotter ever, regardless of sex by virtue of her amazing 1:51.3 win last summer at Pocono. She is sometimes guilty of self-sabotage but can never be dismissed. The Campbell brothers, John and Jim will conspire to manage that wicked speed toward its best use.   The new shooter in this division is Heaven's Door another who demonstrated great talent at two for Ross Croghan but it took until this year for her mind to catch up to her speed. She was sold over the winter and moved into the Ake Svanstedt barn where she has flourished. She won last month's NJSS final in a stakes record 1:52 with great ease and is facing the division's best now for her new connections and adds another element of suspense.   Next up (race six) will be the $212,500 Mistletoe Shalee for sophomore pacing fillies, another contentious contest. Sandbetweenurtoes raced but once at two for Tony Alagna but showed such promise in her first few starts at three that the brothers Remmen, Ray and Larry, bought her for John Grant and she hasn't lost since. She was the winner of last week's elimination in 1:49.1 with Brett Miller aboard and will likely be the post time fave off a 5/2 morning line.   Precocious Beauty was the divisional leader last year for the McNair barn and has yet to find that form thus far at three, though last week's race was encouraging. Takter's Uffizi Hanover won the 2013 Breeders Crown and the Fan Hanover this year for her regular pilot, newly minted Hall of Famer David Miller.   The older dames race on the pace for $178,450 in the cleverly named Golden Girls stake in the seventh race. Joe Holloway has always had a way with the ladies, training several distaff champions over the years and has a formidable pair in this one. Somwherovarainbow has well over a million in career earnings and has been in deadly form for Joe since early spring with six wins from ten starts, among those the Bluechip Matchmaker final. Brian Sears drives.   Her stable mate Shebestingin is the fastest female Standardbred ever, having seared The Red Mile clay in an eye-popping 1:47 flat last fall. She has yet to beat the best of this division since graduating into the open ranks but her speed make her a danger for David Miller.   The race favorite at 2/1 is the iron-tough race mare Androvette. Her story has been told many times but never gets old, particularly for her connections. She vaults over $3million lifetime with a win in this stake for trainer PJ Fraley and her constant racing companion Tim Tetrick.   Just when you think, "Well, this just can't get any better," you come to the meat of the card. Race 8 contains the finest Free For All pacers in the land racing for $463,300 in the WR Haughton Memorial, one of the biggest events of their season. The lifetime earnings for these ten horses are just north of the $20 million mark.   Captaintreacherous is the two time defending Pacer of the Year and a winner of over $3million in his racing career for trainer Tony Alagna. He's developed into a fan favorite with his gritty, never give up style and he'll need every bit of that heart, a large dose of speed and another clever steer from Tetrick on Saturday. He's drawn a favorable post starting just inside the 8/5 favorite, Sweet Lou.   Sweet Lou has flashed brilliance from the start for his connections and still holds the freshman pacing world speed record. Now five year of age, he's in the best form of his career and has been invincible since paired with driver Ron Pierce in May. Together they are five for five, all in 1:48.3 or faster culminating with a world record 1:47 the hard way at Pocono in the Franklin, the fastest mile on a five-eighths track in history.   Sweet Lou is one of a formidable four horse armada sent out in the Haughton by Meadowlands and national leading trainer Ron Burke. The four Burke horses alone have amassed a staggering $12million in career earnings led by the richest pacer in history, ageless wonder Foiled Again at $6.3 million. Foiled will have to overcome the extreme outside post for his regular driver Yannick Gingras in this battle.   The $776,000 Meadowlands Pace is race nine on the star studded extravaganza and has been well covered in many arenas, so for our purposes let's just say it shapes up to be a very exciting and contentious race, as is usually the case in the absence of a clear division leader.   Among the deepest and most contentious divisions this season is the older trotting mares. The returning Horse of the Year Bee A Magician, last year's division leader Maven and pair of four year old mares that have blossomed into trotting divas, Perfect Alliance and Classic Martine will all meet among a field of eight in the $40,000 Miss Versatility in race ten.   It's one for the ages this Saturday night at The Meadowlands with over $2.5 million in purses offered over the 13 race card, including four $100,000 finals for state bred freshmen. Post time is 6:30pm and it's going to be well attended, so if you're thinking of coming out make your reservations now. If not, the Haughton and Pace will be carried live on the CBS Sports Network and the TVG Racing network.   From the Meadowlands Media Relations Office

F.E.G.A.T. presented its annual European Ladies Amateur Drivers Championship this weekend, raced at Mons Ghlin and Waregen tracks in Belgium on Saturday and Sunday. The home country prevailed as Suzy Jans-Lavigne was victorious with 22 points. Pernille Rasmussen from Denmark was second with 20 points followed closely by Liss Karin Sandvik with 19. 13 women participated representing most of the 15 F.E.G.A.T. member nations. Final point totals are listed below.   FINAL CLASSIFICATION COUNTRY DRIVER POINTS BELGIUM SUZY JANS LAVIGNE 22 DENMARK PERNILLE RASMUSSEN 20 NORWAY LISS KARIN SANDVIK 19 GERMANY SARAH KUBE 18 THE NETHERLANDS HILTJE TJALSMA 17 SPAIN ANTONIA VAQUER STASCHEL 17 FINLAND LAURILA MERVI 13 ITALY ELENA VILLANI ORLANDO 13 SWITZERLAND PATRICIA FELBER 12 HUNGARY BERNADETT BALOGH 11 RUSSIA MARIA KHOREVA 9 SWEDEN EVA LUNDAHL 9 AUSTRIA SABINE KLETTENHOFER 5     by Thomas H. Hicks,for Harnesslink.com

After day one, on June 13, of the F.E.G.A.T. ladies championship competition at Mons in Belgium, local driver Suzane Jans Lavigne leads her rivals with 22 points after finishing first, second and third in her three races. Norwegian Liss Karin Sandvik is second after winning the last of four races in the day's competition. The other winners this day were Netherlands' Hiltje Tjalsma and Spain's Antonia Vaquer. Belgium, Norway, Germany, Finland, Hungary and Austria have finished the competition. The championship will be completed on Sunday. CLASSIFICATION AFTER DAY 1 COUNTRY DRIVER POINTS BELGIUM SUZY JANS LAVIGNE 22 NORWAY LISS KARIN SANDVIK 19 GERMANY SARAH KUBE 18 SPAIN ANTONIA VAQUER STASCHEL 13 FINLAND LAURILA MERVI 13 HUNGARY BERNADETT BALOGH 11 THE NETHERLANDS HILTJE TJALSMA 11 DENMARK PERNILLE RASMUSSEN 11 ITALY ELENA VILLANI ORLANDO 10 SWEDEN EVA LUNDAHL 8 SWITZERLAND PATRICIA FELBER 7 AUSTRIA SABINE KLETTENHOFER 5 RUSSIA MARIA KHOREVA 2 Points system: 9-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 disq 1 non-runner 5 by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

The fields are out for the 2014 Harness Jewels to be run at Cambridge on May 31st and the barrier draws look to have added plenty of spice to the $1.2 million-dollar raceday. Favoured runners that have drawn on the second-line include ,Venus Serena, Sky Major, Elios, Franco Nelson, Sheemon, and $1.25 favourite Follow The Stars, who will have to loop the whole field after drawing the outside of the second-line. However, the other hot favourite for Jewels Day, Adore Me, looks set to lead and win after drawing well in barrier five. To view the fields for the 2014 Harness Jewels click here.

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 TORONTO, February 13 – Harness racing’s social media hottest news, Sydney Weaver,  was reunited with Sydney Seelster – A Valentine’s Day giftial media community erupted on Sunday Feb. 9 following the $6,250 claim of Sydney Seelster at Flamboro Downs. Horses are claimed every day in the harness racing world, but this particular claim upset many fans of the sport. To some, the horse might be just a $4,500 claimer (plus allowances), but for owner Sydney Weaver the pacing mare was worth a lot more. In 2012, Weaver, a thirteen-year-old girl with cerebral palsy, received the best Christmas gift any child could receive – a racehorse named Sydney Seelster, hand delivered by longtime owner Cesar Kowalski. Since then, Weaver and her namesake horse have been inseparable. On race day, the Weaver family can always be spotted wearing pink in light of Sydney Seelster’s nickname, ‘Pinky’. Weaver, of Acton, Ont., has a deep passion for the sport and is often found trackside at Mohawk throughout the summer. In addition to being a harness racing super fan, Weaver is also an ambassador for the sport as an award-winning writer, public speaker and inspirational leader. With the help of her father, Don, Weaver also founded Friends Of We Care – a charity designed to send special needs kids to summer camps. Needless to say, Weaver has certainly accomplished a lot at a young age. This past Sunday, Weaver was heartbroken Sydney Seelster was claimed by Guy Gagnon of Gatineau, Quebec. The standardbred racing community was taken aback by the news of Weaver losing her most prized possession.  Fans immediately took to Facebook and Twitter to offer their thoughts and support, demonstrating how the standardbred racing community can quickly band together. “At first, I couldn’t believe it. I actually thought it was a joke,” Weaver said. “Then it hit me and it wasn’t a very pleasant night. It was just an awful feeling to lose something or someone so close. We barely slept.” Though it may have seemed impossible to some supporters that Gagnon wouldn’t know the relationship Weaver had with Sydney Seelster, it turns out that the Quebec resident simply is not a participant on social media sites where Weaver’s story is prominent. “I honestly had absolutely no idea about the story behind Sydney Weaver and her horse,” Gagnon said. “I feel terrible for putting the claim in and certainly never would do that to the little girl and her horse. “My wife is a school teacher and deals with kids every day,” Gagnon continued. “I coach kids hockey and I’m very involved with children. We wouldn’t like it if something like that happened to us. I wish this never happened, but we are doing what is right and giving the horse back. It’s the right thing to do. I would like to meet Sydney and her family in the future and offer my sincere apologies in person.” Gagnon also offered his thought process behind seeking Sydney Seelster. “I had a horse claimed on me last week and wanted to fill the stall. I searched a bunch of cheaper horses at Western Fair and Flamboro and noticed Sydney Seelster.” Weaver is thankful that Sydney Seelster will be returning home. “I’m just happy to be getting ‘Pinky’ back,” Weaver said. “She’s a part of our family and we’re thankful to have so many caring friends.” Weaver’s mother, Lisa, is also appreciative for Gagnon’s efforts. “We thought it would be possible for him not to know the story and that turned out to be the case,” she said. “We’re very thankful for Mr. Gagnon’s understanding and doing what we felt was right. Mr. Gagnon was very apologetic and sincere throughout this entire process and we thank him for that. Something that started out awful has turned out for the better and we are very lucky to have so many caring friends in this sport. “We know horses are claimed everyday,” she continued. “We understand the business and logic of the sport. We just didn’t think in a million years that she would leave Sydney.” Sydney Seelster was entered into a $7,500 claimer (plus allowances) on Wednesday, February 12 at Flamboro Downs, in which the Weaver family claimed their loved one back. Gagnon also arranged to pay the difference in the claiming price ($3,125) as Sydney Seelster was raised in class and Gagnon offered the Weaver’s any prize money that the 22-time winner earns. Sydney Seelster finished third in the $5,000 event, earning $600 for the Weaver family. A simple misunderstanding has been rectified in lieu of one of harness racing’s most beloved owners. So is it a coincidence that Sydney Seelster is being re-united with Weaver two days before Valentine’s Day?  Maybe…maybe not, but it’s certainly a perfect time to mend a broken heart. by Greg Gangle for WEG

The list of stallions registered with the Ontario Standardbred Improvement Program for the 2014 breeding season is now available. The list can be found on the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) website. Progeny from these stallions will be eligible to compete in Ontario Sired restricted races, receive Ontario Sired Rewards and participate in the OSS Program. Demonstrating continued confidence in the Program, the owners of 85 per cent of the top breeding stallions in Ontario in 2013 committed to standing their stallions in Ontario in 2014. These stallions represent those with the highest service fees, indicating that Ontario breeders will continue to produce a quality horse supply and an attractive racing product. “Ontario has always had an enviable sires stakes program,” says Ann Straatman of Seelster Farms and a member of the Standardbred Improvement Program’s Advisory Group. “Fortunately, our OSS program continues to be very competitive in terms of purses, Ontario Sired and Ontario Bred Rewards and racing opportunities.” Owners of stallions not currently in the program can late register their stallions after the January 15 deadline and the program administration will post updated lists as required. For more information on Ontario’s Horse Improvement Programs, visit the Program pages at ontarioracingcommission.ca or contact the Program Administrator at 416-213-0520. From the Ontario Sire Stakes Program

CBS Philly News has reported that Anthony Coletta's Family lawyer, Michael Barrett, says a judge Thursday gave his firm until February 21, 2014 to inspect the track. He says Harrah’s Philadelphia did not object to the motion. PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 30, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Attorneys from Saltz, Mongeluzzi, Barrett, & Bendesky, P.C., representing critically injured harness racing driver Anthony Coletta, are seeking a court order to force the owners of Harrah's Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack to permit a forensic investigation of the controversial track surface which has been linked to the horrific November 17, 2013 accident that nearly claimed the life of Mr. Coletta. Mr. Coletta's parents-guardians, Alfred and Rosemary Coletta, of Hammonton, New Jersey, turned to the Firm on behalf of their son to use all legal means necessary to determine what caused the accident, hold those responsible fully accountable for their actions, and ensure that no other drivers and their horses are put at risk. The Pennsylvania Harness Racing Commission last week temporarily suspended racing at the track due to concerns over the track surface – including its composition and maintenance - and Harrah's alleged failure to cooperate with the state's investigation. Attorneys Robert Mongeluzzi, Michael Barrett, and Joseph DeAngelo, of SMBB, are asking a Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas judge to order Harrah's to permit their requested investigation of the track surface to proceed. A hearing on their request is scheduled for today, January 30, in City Hall. Harrah's lawyers have denied the inspection request to date. In addition, the filed Motion to Compel (January Term : 002714) seeks to compel Harrah's (actual defendants named in the Motion and Writ of Summons are: Chester Downs and Marina, LLC D/B/A Harrah's Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack Inc., and Harrah's Chester Downs Management Co, LLC) to preserve all documents and physical evidence that could prove critical in their investigation on behalf of Mr. Coletta. The 31-year-old driver, engaged to be married later this year, suffered numerous fractures, brain and skull injuries as a direct result of being thrown from his sulky and then trampled. He remains hospitalized following several operations and is fully dependent on others for all forms of life care. He had been living in Hudson City, New Jersey. "Based on our preliminary investigation, including the Commonwealth's actions against the racetrack, we are very concerned about the potential destruction of evidence and, therefore, ask the Court to order our team of experts to conduct a complete on-site investigation by no later than February 7th," said Mr. Mongeluzzi. "If Harrah's is truly concerned about the welfare of the drivers and horses, and wishes to regain its suspended racing license, it should have no issues with our request." The track's racing season is scheduled to begin March 8th and the attorneys contend that economic motives on the part of the track operator are in conflict with the need to conduct a thorough investigation. Harrah's is a subsidiary of Las Vegas-headquartered Caesars Entertainment Corporation. "We need to know if the track was being maintained following best industry practices, because its troubled history would indicate otherwise," said Mr. Barrett. "If this was an accident waiting to happen, then Mr. Coletta, his family, and every other driver deserve to know why they've been put in harms way." Mr. DeAngelo noted that the Motion is supported by public statements of "several veteran harness drivers" to the effect that "the racetrack was defective in the area where the horse (in front of Mr. Coletta's) fell, and that Defendants were aware of the racetrack's condition and failed to remedy the condition despite requests from the harness drivers and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania."  

Hey, Meadowlands bettors – yeah, both you “What Exit?” Jersey localites, and you who bet on The Meadowlands races all around the harness world. Take a look at the picture of this guy with the story. Nice-looking guy, huh? And a nice person, too. Cooperative with the press in interviews once you get him going. He’s won 3,000 races in his career, more than 200 in three different seasons, and over $22 million lifetime, which includes two $2 million years. So why do you avoid him in the betting? During the 2012-2013 meet, he came out first start with the trotter All About Justice, and boom – the tote board lights up to $107.40. Then, on February 21, up behind pacer Joyful Years – well, he added a joyful night to his scattered backers to the tune of $142.60 to win. For this meet, he tallied before the New Year with trotter Dough Dough at $18.40. Then, on January 10 and 17, the trotter (I see a pattern) Twin B Spike Man first conquers a B-2 field at a $50.00 mutuel, and just seven days later, up only a half-notch (B1-B2 hcp), he wins again –and this time it’s worth $65.60 for a deuce! And his other drives add value to gimmick tickets too – he shows finishing second with a 25-1 shot, and third at 18-1, 23-1, and 87-1. 135% profit to win on his Meadowlands drives last meet; 119% profit so far this meet. Get to know this guy – Mike Simons. It’s simple – you make money with him. by Jerry Connors for Harnesslink.com

BEDFORD PA, Sat. Jan. 18 – The U.S. Trotting Association’s meeting for District 7 (Pennsylvania) membership, annually held in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Fair Horsemen’s Awards Banquet, took place tonight at the local Omni Bedford Springs Resort. Longtime horseman and USTA Director Sam Beegle has deep roots in this town, for whose high school he wrestled in the State Championship and whose local paper, the Gazette, has Joseph Beegle as its publisher, and when Sam succeeded longtime District Chairman Walter “Boots Dunn,” he decided to treat his fellow Keystoners with some “home cookin’,” and the site, meetings, and dinner were acclaimed by all. At the USTA meeting, Beegle and Dunn, along with fellow Director Barry Brown, went over the proposed USTA rule changes and conducted other necessary business of the association. During the cocktail hour preceding dinner, a demonstration of the soon-to-be-implemented USTA “enter horses by computer” system was shown to an interested gathering. At the awards banquet, honored were both the champion pointwinners during the 21 stops along the fair circuit, along with those horses who won their divisional Championship race at The Meadows on October 5. In 2013, a record four horses, all pacers, recorded triumphs in both events – to show how hard this achievement is, only three horses had been able to win the “double” in the previous four years. The four double champions were: 2YO pacing colt – Mister Chaos, trained by Bob Rougeaux III for first-time owners D&P Racing LLC; 2YO pacing filly – La Fiesta, owned by Mason Shaw (who is not yet two years of age) and trained by his father Jason; 3YO pacing colt – Jungle Of Terror, the leading pointwinner among all competitors at the fairs this year, trained by Steve Schoeffel and owned by Virginia and Kathy Schoeffel in partnership with Steven Lander; 3YO pacing filly – Have More Wine, also a Schoeffel trainee and also owned by the Schoeffel ladies in partnership with James Reuther and James Nelson – her 1:53 1/5 Championship win was the fastest Fair Final ever. Only the trotting side, winners were: 2YO trotting colts – (points) Mr. Weaver, (Champ.) Fly Past Hanover; 2YO trotting fillies – (points) Bella Palazzo, (Champ.) Glide By Shooting (both from the Dunn Stable); 3YO trotting colts – (points) BSMaximumMoonbeam, (Champ.) Rusty Ruddy; 3YO trotting fillies – (points) Monroe County, (Champ.) Homepage. The large gathering was entertained both by a replay of all eight Fair Championships and the large amount of door prizes garnered by Beegle and his co-workers, with the grand prize, a Spyder race sulky, won by Jason Shaw. “My brother Chris (Mason’s uncle) has been doing the driving for our stable, but now maybe I’m start driving some,” Jason – a big fellow -- quipped after winning the big prize.  by Jerry Connors

TROIS-RIVIERES, January 16, 2014 – The Quebec Jockey Club (QJC) is pleased to announce the revival of the Prix d’Ete as a race for 4-year-old pacers, to be contested Sunday September 21st at Hippodrome 3R in Trois-Rivieres. With a guaranteed purse of $200,000, the race marks the return of a great tradition and reflects the intention of the Quebec Jockey Club to have the province’s harness racing industry return, progressively, to a prominent place within the North American scene. Initially known as the Prix d’Automne and won by older horses such as the three-time Horse of the Year Bret Hanover, the marquee event at Blue Bonnets racetrack in Montreal was converted into a race for 3-year-old pacers in 1970 and remained one of the major North American stakes in the division until its last running in 1992. Past winners included Cam Fella, Niatross, Albatross, Strike Out, Abercrombie, Matts Scooter and Beach Towel. To encourage a recent industry trend to have the top 3-year-olds of 2013 remain in competition at age 4, the QJC will offer them a quality race on a quality half-mile venue on the 2014 calendar. “We invite participants to enjoy the warmth of a Quebecois welcome with the excitement and delights of our culture and our long tradition of quality harness racing,” said QJC chairman Tony Infilise. “This special event will be a weekend celebration of harness racing in collaboration with the city of Trois-Rivières, about 1.5 hours from Montreal. Harness racing is deeply rooted in Quebec as demonstrated by the Grand Circuit success of drivers, trainers, and owners from our province. It is an industry which has refused to die in this province despite the brutal years since 2008.” $200,000 will be the highest purse in North America for 4-year-old pacers exclusively. “Accordingly, we hope and expect to attract most of, if not all, the best 4-year-olds,” Infilise said. The format calls for the top 8 purse earners of 2014 who declare into the event to race in the final and the next 8 who declare to go in a consolation for $50,000. “It should be an event not to be missed and a gathering of those who love our sport,” Infilise said. “The Quebec Jockey Club is pleased to respond to a need for such races for 4 year olds. We will endeavor to find the funding to conduct an equivalent trotting race in the future.” The QJC is a not-for-profit entity, led by seven (7) passionate businessmen who serve the industry as volunteer directors, dedicated to re-launching a professional harness racing and breeding industry in Quebec. It began operations in March, 2010, after the bankruptcy of private racetrack operator Attractions Hippiques, and in 2012 purchased Hippodrome 3R. It also supports a regional circuit of 12 fair tracks throughout the province and oversees a network of 10 teletheatres. Submitted by the Quebec Jockey Club

Billy Davis Jr. put on a driving clinic during Monday’s 12-race card at The Raceway at Western Fair District thanks to his five-win performance. Davis went wire-to-wire with Delta Grace Tone (2:03) in Race 3 before racking up four straight wins beginning in Race 8 with Katherine B (1:59). He came back to take Race 9 – the $6,500 Preferred 3 – with Hoboken Hanover (1:56.2), Race 10 with Woodmere Sandrop (1:59.2) and Race 11 with Taylorlane Fancy (1:58.1). The 2013 season marks the third consecutive season the young reinsman has registered more than 400 wins. The career winner of 1,566 races and purses of $13,510,268 is quickly closing in on $4 million in seasonal purse earnings. A change of scenery certainly suited Twin B Legend, who dug in late to win the $10,000 Preferred 2 in 1:57.2 for the tandem of driver Doug McNair and trainer Ron Adams. The five-year-old son of Mach Three-What An Attitude, who’d missed cheques in his two previous outings at Woodbine, took over command at the three-quarter pole and fended off a late-rushing Royal Outlook by a neck in a time of 1:57.2. Race favourite Monster In Law finished third. VIP Internet Stable LLC, David Rovine Stable LLC, Seafood Delight Stable and Keith Pippi share ownership on the 10-time winner who boosted his lifetime bankroll to $353,863 with the victory. Heres The Magic survived a first-over trip and won the $6,800 Preferred 3 for driver Alfie Carroll. The Victor Puddy trainee wore down the tempo-setting Cimeronken, who sliced out panels of :29, 1:00 and 1:29.1, en route to the 1:59.3 score. Cimeronken was second best, with Euro Man taking home the show dough. Keith Cassell of Smiths Falls, Ontario owns the four-year-old son of Kadabra-Blackberry Hanover who is now 4-for-34 this season after going 0-for-21 last year. The gelding has stashed away more than $270,000 to date. To view results for Monday's card of harness racing, click the following link: Monday Results – The Raceway at Western Fair District. Reprinted with permission by www.standardbredcanada.com 

Nine trotters faced the starting gate in Monday’s featured Preferred 2 at The Raceway at Western Fair District, and Amigo Loco was a wire-to-wire winner in the $10,500 tilt. Rob Sparling, Jr. hustled Amigo Loco to the lead from Post 1 and the six-year-old son of Amigo Hall-Fathers Daughters chopped out panels of :30.3, 1:00.3 and 1:30.1 en route to a three-length score in 2:00.4. Thundering Ovation tagged along in the two-hole and finished second, while Long Ago rallied from just off the lead to be third. Andy Hardy trains the gelding for owner Tim Varney of London, Ontario, and together they’ve watched the OSS graduate stash away more than $143,000 in career earnings. The victory was his ninth of the season and the 15th of his career. Sparling also guided Rubber Belly to a winning effort in the $6,000 Fillies & Mares Preferred 3. The four-year-old daughter of L H Stryker-Rubber Head powered off cover in the backstretch and motored to an impressive winin 1:58.2. It was 1-1/4 lengths back to runner-up Cards That Count, with Royal Cover Up nabbing the show dough. Trainer Randy Parish co-owns the mare, who was sent off at odds of 11-1, with James Parish of Elmwood and Brent Parish of Chesley, Ontario. The 12-time winner now boasts an 8-9-1 record from 38 trips to the track this season. She’s stashed away more than $57,000 to date. A set of $6,500 Preferred 3 events were also contested on Monday’s card, with Monster In Law and Zorgwijk Nova taking home top honours in their respective assignments. Monster In Law extended his winning streak to two-in-a-row for trainer Don Beatson thanks to his 1:56.3 tally. Trevor Henry took over the lead with the gelding shortly past the quarter pole and he never looked back en route to the comfortable triumph over Western Captive and Lawmen Reign. Don Beatson, Ken Beatson along with Sandra & Ralph Pitt share ownership on the 33-time winner, who upped his lifetime earnings to $412,976 with the win. Zorgwijk Nova capitalized on some class relief in her trotting affair for the tandem of driver James MacDonald and trainer Ronnie MacLean. MacDonald hustled the three-year-old daughter of Armbro Ricochet-Zorgwijk Amarillis to the lead from Post 7 and she successfully chopped out splits of :29.1, :59.3 and 1:29.2 en route to the three-length decision in 1:59.4. Thunderaway was next best, with Jetcrest taking home the show dough. Sent off as the 3-2 favourite, Zorgwijk Nova improved this year’s record to 5-for-19 for MacLean and partners Zorgwijk Stables Ltd, Happy Trails Stables and Murray Neilson. Her share of the loot lifted her lifetime cashstash to $176,949. To view results for Monday's card of harness racing, click the following link: Monday Results – The Raceway at Western Fair District. Reprinted with permission by www.standardbredcanada.ca. 

HRSA are delighted to announce that Tattsbet will be offering a weekly fixed price wagering service on South Australian Harness Racing commencing on Saturday 7 December at Betezy Park Globe Derby. HRSA CEO, John Lewis stated "that this is a significant announcement for the harness racing industry in South Australia, which will create significant wagering interest, and be a great fillip for our code." Mr Lewis also stated that "this is one of the most exciting and positive wagering announcements for many years, and follows considerable lobbying by HRSA over many years to secure an enhanced fixed price wagering service". "In particular, we are also extremely appreciative of the commitment to this initiative from Tattsbet management including Tattsbet CEO, Robbie Cooke, who is clearly demonstrating an increased commitment to generating wagering growth." Mr Lewis further stated that 'the timing of this announcement was ideal leading into the "Summer of Racing" for harness racing in South Australia, including the $125,000 Betezy SA Cup to be held on Saturday 11 January 2014." Tattsbet have also advised that they intend to expand the fixed price wagering service to include Friday night Harness Racing by March 2014, with further possible expansion to occur later in 2014. More Information: John Lewis, HRSA CEO - Ph 0417 855 300 Email: jlewis@saharness.org.au     Gary Newton   sportspac21@yahoo.com.au  

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