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The 2020 harness racing season opening of "On The Deck" will officially take place at Sunshine Meadows Equestrian Village in Delray Beach, Florida on Saturday, January 4. That's when editor Jeffrey Bell says the 2020 Roster Book will be ready for distribution and all two and three-year-old's in training will be wearing their saddle pad numbers. The 2020 Roster Book was first done by Bell last year and enables viewers to see the horses in training and be able to look them up to see their pedigree, trainer and owners. "You do not have to wait until mid-February for pitchers and catchers to report to get a little excited," Bell said. "Come this Saturday, January 4, it's Opening Day at On The Deck at Sunshine Meadows. Everyone is invited to come and see the finest two and three-year-old pacers and trotters in their winter training for the upcoming 2020 racing season. "You will be able to see and identify any horse jogging/training six days a week by viewing the 2020 edition of champions and future champions in training," Bell added. This is volume number two of the special Sunshine Meadows Stable Roster and it is provided free of charge courtesy of Jeffrey Bell. On The Deck was developed by the Lindy Farms Stable, Tony Alagna Stable and Myron Bell. Every Saturday the public is invited free of charge to come to the Sunshine Meadows Equestrian Village where the On The Deck deck is located right on the finish line of the one-mile track and watch the horses train. In edition to the free Stable Roster Book, there is always bagels, cream cheese, coffee and tea offered for free. For more information or directions to Sunshine Meadows, go to https://www.sunshinemeadowsdelray.com/sunshine-meadows Horses are usually on the track for training between 7:00 am to noon. The deck is furnished with comfortable deck chairs and couches and there is also a small bleacher area and plenty of grass for lawn chairs. By Steve Wolf, for On The Deck      

Elkton, MD - Post Time with Mike and Mike presented by BetAmerica, is excited to announce their line-up for Thursday morning (November 8th) at 10:30 a.m. They will be joined by prominent horse owner Myron Bell; trainer and owner Julie Miller; and 2019 hall of fame entrant Linda Toscano. Bell, owner and operator of Riverview Racing LLC, will talk about Harrisburg yearling sale purchases Honorat Hanover ($400K) and In Reality Hanover ($350K). Trainer Linda Toscano will also chime in on the ongoing Harrisburg Sale. Part of the 2019 Hall of Fame class, Toscano will be the trainer of day two sales topper Rodeo Blue Chip, who was purchased for $250,000 by Ken Jacobs. Trainer Julie Miller will also offer her views on her Harrisburg purchases. Along with Brixton Medical, Marvin Katz, and Bud Hatfield; Miller spent $250,000 on a Muscle Hill sired trotting filly Hilly Holbrook. Post Time with Mike and Mike presented by BetAmerica can be heard live every Thursday at 10:30 a.m. via their website www.posttimewithmikeandmike.com or on the archive at www.betamerica.com/BARN. By Michael Carter, for Post Time with Mike and Mike      

Tammy McNiven, proprietor of Twinbrook Farm in Embro, Ontario with her husband, Rob, had small dreams for a pacing filly they raised and sold on Wednesday at the Standardbred Horse Sale in Harrisburg, PA. But when hip number #917, Twin B Babe, Wednesday's sales topper at $100,000, attracted a steady stream of lookers, they thought perhaps their estimates might be exceeded. "We bought the mare pregnant with this filly for $6 or $7,000, she was from the He's Watching family and he was good that year," she said. "We thought if we got $15,000 for the first foal, if it was a nice one, that would be great, but never dreamed of this. "She was very busy with people looking at her. Casie Coleman was the underbidder and she doesn't usually pay that kind of money, so you know how good she is. She is pretty. Her name suits her, she's real babe. "She has an impeccable pedigree," said Myron Bell, who signed the $100,000 ticket as Captain's Court. "She looks just like her sire, Artiscape, spitting image. [Trainer] Tony Alagna is going to take her to Florida and hopefully she'll make the races and do some good, get a record and maybe make a few dollars. In two years, she's in the Captain's court, she'll be bred to Captaintreacherous. She has her partnership already, it's Mike Gulotta, myself, Tony Alagna and Joe DiScala, a good friend of ours." A little earlier in the sale, Twinbrook also sold the $90,000 trotting colt Twin B Argo, a son of Chapter Seven and Anklets Aweigh to Mike Kimelman. The new connections of Lovin A Player, hip #687 at Wednesday's Standardbred Horse sale in Harrisburg, PA never had a doubt her was the horse for them. . "We loved him," said Toscano who signed the $92,000 sales ticket on the Roll With Joe - Lovin A Fool colt, whose video can be seen here. "Wanda (Polisseni, of Purple Haze Stable) and I looked at him the first day and we loved him from the minute we saw him. "We hoped that he'd go cheaper, but unfortunately that was not to be. He's a beautiful colt. Mike Kimelman told me he looked as much like Roll With Joe as any colt he's seen. He has a beautiful head and just enough "boy" in him, which I like and stood real correct. He's just a very, very nice looking horse, pretty colt. "He will be going to Pinehurst, I'm training down there this year. After three winters in the cold, we decided it was time." Opulent Blue Chip, hip # 763, was among the highest selling yearlings of the day. The Art Major filly out of the Bettor's Delight mare Haze's Zure Bet was sold for $67,000 to Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, Ontario. Her Shadow Play brother, Nvestment Blue Chip (1:51.1), is a winner of over $280,000, won a division of the Champlain Stakes, three Ontario-sired events and was third in the Breeders Crown. ""She was a beautiful filly and with the colt out there, she's got tons behind her," said Jean Brown of Blue Chip. "We're very excited about her. She was good sized (born February 1), beautiful filly, got a great home with Mark Steacy and wish them a lot of luck." "I went to the annual Blue Chip Open House and she was probably my pick of them all that day," says Steacy. "I liked her conformation. She just had that racey look to her. I also have been racing against Nvestment Blue Chip, I've seen the wrong end of him a few times and I knew the family could produce a good horse like that; she looked the part and hopefully she's a sound filly. She was eye catching I thought. She's very athletic, she moved nice on the video." Through three days of yearlings sold, a total of 1,010, the cumulative average is $30,835 and a gross of $31,143,500. In 2014, there were 1,089 sold for an average of $32,903 and a gross of $35,831,500. Russell Williams, chairman of the Standardbred Sales Company, said, at the close of the day, "Those who brought a commercially attractive product to market were well rewarded. Therefore, this sale was like every other sale. I will say that the Pennsylvania yearlings were exceptionally low on average, I was surprised by that." Asked if he thought that low average was due to the current difficulties in structuring an adequate operating budget for the Pennsylvania Racing Commission and the looming possibility of a racing shutdown, he said, "I think we're going to find out if that is the cause. The facts will develop." by Ellen Harvey, for Harness Racing Communications

On Monday (July 13), 40 key harness racing industry stakeholders met in Columbus, Ohio, to exchange dozens of ideas on how to address the problem of declining foal crops and the challenge of attracting new owners to harness racing at a summit organized by the U.S. Trotting Association. Many of the participants commented throughout the day on the value of the gathering and the need to leave the meeting with an action plan and agenda. "It went well and there were a lot of interesting ideas discussed," said USTA President Phil Langley. "Obviously, we had a group that wanted to work together to get things done. Now we have to find out what we can do to execute what everyone agreed on." A number of the participants emphasized the need for owners, breeders, horsemen and racetracks to work together on these important initiatives and the importance of making the racetrack experience a good one to attract potential new owners. A major initiative that was unanimously agreed upon was the reallocation of purses to increase money for maiden and non-winners races. Tom Luchento (SBOA of NJ), Myron Bell (Brittany Farms) and Tom Grossman (Blue Chip Farms), as well as USTA directors Nick Salvi and Jim Reynolds, all spoke on the need to create better economic opportunities for owners of younger horses. Other owner-related topics agreed to pursue are: cooperation from the tracks and horsemen to work together and with the USTA to better educate the public on benefits of horse ownership. * Through new owners' seminars * Working to improve web presence of horse ownership information * Utilizing racetrack and racino contact lists to distribute horse ownership information to potential new owners *development and distribution of videos highlighting the excitement of horse ownership * As well as providing additional free ownership benefits including automatic notification of horses entered, free program pages for races entered from TrackMaster and free replays of those races. In addition, Myron Bell from Brittany Farms explained his Grand Slams of trotting and pacing concept. Both series, one for each gait, would involve seven or eight major races to include bonuses for the winning horses with an additional bonus for a sweep. At the conclusion of the all-day summit, USTA Chairman of the Board Ivan Axelrod informed the participants that the USTA would be sending each of them a summary of the meeting next week, so that an action plan could be developed. Following were the attendees at the USTA Summit: Myron Bell - Brittany Farms                                           Bob Boni - Northwood Bloodstock Agency Murray Brown - Hanover Shoe Farms                        Bob Carson - Writer Tom Charters - Hambletonian Society                        Eric Cherry - Owner Mike Freibert - Bluegrass Staking                                Teena Freibert - Bluegrass Staking John Gallinger - Standardbred Canada                      Kevin Greenfield - Ohio Harness Horsemen's Asoc  Tom Grossman - Blue Chip Farms                               Ellen Harvey - Harness Racing Communications Rob Key - Converseon social media agency            Milt Leeman - Owner Mark Loewe - Penn National Gaming                         Tom Luchento - St-bred Breeders & Owners of NJ  Joe McLead - Sugar Valley Farm                                 Dot Morgan - New Vocations Virgil Morgan Jr. -- Trainer                                             David Reid - Preferred Equine Marketing Robert Schmitz - Ohio State Racing Commission     David Siegel - TrackMaster Steve Stewart - Hunterton Farm & Sales Agency      Ann Straatman - Seelster Farms Janet Terhune - Harness Racing Hall of Fame         Joe Thomson - Winbak Farm                                                                                                                                                                                           Ken Weingartner           

Illinios native Tony Alanga has come a long way in the world of harness racing in the last few years with a string of headline horses. Since tying up with Myron Bell of Brittany Farms, the Alanga barn has stamped its mark on age group racing in North America. The first horse to really make his mark from the partnership between Alanga and Bell was the brilliant son of Somebeachsomewhere in Captaintreacherous who was a star from the time he hit the track as a two year old. Capotaintreacherous won eight of ten at two on the way to earning $911,277 and earned pacer of the year honours. He came back even better at three winning thirteen of sixteen for $2,065,533 while taking a mark of 1:47.1 and was again horse of the year at three. Now retired and standing at Hanover Shoe Farms at a fee of $15,000, Captaintreacherous could rightly be said as the horse that really put Tony Alanga on the map. Just to prove that they weren't a one horse partnership, Tony and Myron combined once again to produce last season's outstanding two year old Artspeak. Artspeak, a son of Western Ideal  produced a two year old record very similiar to Captaintreacherous in that he won eight of ten starts for $805,727 while taking a record of 1:50.2. Artspeak has come out at three in dominant form and is two from two at this early stage of the season and has lowered his best time to 1:48.4. Recently Tony Alanga spoke to In The Sulky and we post that video below. Harnesslink Media  

Harrisburg, PA --- Buying a yearling is just one step in the process of getting a racehorse, or perhaps more accurately getting a horse to the races, as trainer Jonas Czernyson is well aware. Czernyson, acting on behalf of Swedish interests, bought colt trotter Brooklyn Hill for a sales-topping $390,000 at the opening day of the Standardbred Horse Sale on Monday. Brooklyn Hill, by 2009 Horse of the Year Muscle Hill, is the first foal out of the stakes-winning mare Brooklyn, and his family includes past standouts Pizza Dolce and Creamy Mimi. "Now I just have to make sure he can perform," Czernyson said with a laugh. "Now I've got my hands full. We've just got to hope for the best now. But he's a very nice looking colt. I think we should be OK." Brooklyn Hill was one of two yearlings to sell for at least $300,000 and among five horses to sell for at least $200,000. Colt pacer Stepenwolf Hanover, a son of 2008 Horse of the Year Somebeachsomewhere out of the stakes-winning mare So Perfect, sold for $300,000 to a group led by Myron Bell. Last year's first day sales-topper sold for $355,000. A total of 221 yearlings were sold Monday, with 41 horses - 18.5 percent - reaching at least $100,000, a slight increase compared to last year when 39 of 218 horses - 17.8 percent - hit that level. Overall numbers, though, dropped slightly. This year's first day averaged $60,955, a decrease of 6.5 percent compared to the $65,239 average in 2013. This year's numbers, however, were 13.5 percent better than the $53,684 opening-day average in 2012. In September, the first night of the Lexington Selected Sale saw 97 yearlings sell for an average of a single-session record $104,959, a 21.6 percent increase over 2013. "We were down a little bit over last year," Standardbred Horse Sales Company President Pete Spears said. "Unlike Lexington, we don't necessarily stack our Monday as heavily. Whether this represents a real shortfall, or whether this means people are going to pay more (Tuesday), I can't really tell. "We do have consignors who would rather sell on Tuesday, or even on Wednesday and Thursday, and we usually go along with their wishes. Overall, I think the figures look a little light, but I think we'll have a better idea where we are later in the week." Spears said the first day's outcome didn't mirror traffic for the sale. "When I talked to the consignors they said the traffic at their farms was as heavy as it's been in many years," Spears said. "Traffic at the sale has been huge. Yesterday morning at 8 a.m. people were inspecting horses. They were here at 6 o'clock last night and even later inspecting horses. This morning I was here at 8 a.m. and the place had more people inspecting horses than I've seen in years at that time. "I think people looked, they just didn't necessarily spend. We'll see whether they have money in their pockets tomorrow." Trotting colts led the way Monday in Harrisburg, with 58 selling for an average of $70,440, good for an increase of 9.8 percent. Last year, that group sold for an average of $64,119. Filly trotters - who led the way on Monday in 2013 - saw a dip of 28.3 percent, from $74,129 to $53,128. Pacing fillies saw a slight increase, 2.4 percent, up to $51,542. Last year the same group enjoyed a 42 percent increase in average sales price. Colt pacers averaged $64,919 this year, a decrease of 11.5 percent from the mark of $73,375 in 2013. Czernyson didn't expect Brooklyn Hill to sell for as much as $390,000. "I guess somebody wanted him as much as we wanted him," Czernyson said. "You always like to buy what you want, if you have the opportunity to do that. That's nice. "I really like the horse, and (the owner) really liked him. That's why we went for him, and we got him. To us, he had everything we wanted." Bell, who will share ownership of Stepenwolf Hanover with Brittany Farms, John Cancelliere, and Marvin Katz, expected to bid in the range of $300,000 for the colt. He opened the bidding at $200,000 for Stepenwolf Hanover, whose family includes stakes-winners Perfectionist, Lifetime Member and Copywriter as well as millionaires Tell All and Image Of Dawn. Tony Alagna will train the colt. "You've got to show people you mean business," Bell said. "I was there to buy the horse, not be an underbidder. "He was one of the best looking horses in the sale. Great pedigree, great maternal family." Jeff Snyder bought colt pacer Twice On The Pipes for $240,000. The colt is by Somebeachsomewhere, out of the stakes-winning mare Knock Three Times. His family includes Doo Wop Hanover. "He's a perfect, great-looking colt," Snyder said, adding he was uncertain who would train the horse. "I saw him turned out in the field, and he was great there, a great-moving colt. There was nothing not to like about him. He had a brother (Maxi Bon) that had some speed, won in (1):49 and a piece, and he's out of a champion mare. "Look, it's a crapshoot. We thought he was the best Somebeach in the sale. The mare is 2-for-2; she's a young mare. He's a beautiful colt. I expected him to go for more than $240,000; I thought he'd go for ($300,000) something." Celebrity Farms' Sam Stathis bought colt trotter D Man Hanover, a full brother to 2007 Horse of the Year and Hambletonian winner Donato Hanover, for $200,000. The colt is by Andover Hall, out of D Train. Stathis hopes for his own trip to the Hambletonian winner's circle with Donato Hanover's brother. "A couple years ago I said I guarantee Maserati to win the Hambletonian, now we have to work on the next one," Stathis said, referring to Celebrity Maserati, who finished sixth in his Hambletonian elimination in 2013 and failed to advance to the final. "If lightning doesn't strike, we want to go all the way. That's why we spend that kind of money. We've got big dreams. I figured if we're going to take a chance, let's go all the way." DAY 1 - TOP 15 Hip-Sex-Gait-Name-Sire-Dam-Buyer-Price 139-C-T-Brooklyn Hill-Muscle Hill-Brooklyn-Jonas Czernyson, agent-$390,000 135-C-P-Stepenwolf Hanover-Somebeachsomewhere-So Perfect-Myron Bell, agent-$300,000 51-C-P-Twice On The Pipes-Somebeachsomewhere-Knock Three Times-Jeff Snyder-$240,000 89-C-T-Mr Montgomery-Donato Hanover-Munis Blue Chip-Determination-$200,000 109-C-T-D Man Hanover-Andover Hall-D Train-Celebrity Farms-$200,000 4-F-T-Open Access-Credit Winner-Armbro Déjà Vu-Alan Ritchie-$190,000 226-C-T-Revenger-Muscle Hill-Cocktail Hour-Jimmy Takter-$190,000 141-F-T-Selfie Hanover-Kadabra-Star Hanover-Jimmy Takter-$180,000 124-C-T-Warlocks Den-Muscle Hiill-Sabrina Hall-Courant AB-$170,000 90-C-T-Mosconi Hanover-Donato Hanover-Muscaloosa-Jimmy Takter-$165,000 144-F-T-Emoticon Hanover-Kadabra-Emmylou Who-Determination-$165,000 87-F-P-Malwhere-Somebeachsomewhere-Ms Malicious-Three Brothers Stable-$160,000 130-F-P-Nachomama Bluechip-Rock N Roll Heaven-Shot Togo Bluechip-Tony O'Sullivan, agent-$160,000 200-C-P-Must Be Heaven-Rock N Roll Heaven-Must See-Ken Jacobs-$155,000 96-F-P-A List Hanover-Somebeachsomewhere-Allamerican Nadia-Andy Miller Stable, agent-$145,000 by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications  

It was announced today via Harness Racing Update, that Artspeak will not race in the Breeders Crown and is done for the 2014 race according to spokesman Myron Bell for Brittany Farms. Before the Governor’s Cup, Harnesslink interviewed trainer Tony Alagna, who explained that they did not know why Artspeak made breaks in his prior two starts but that he was ready to go in the Governor’s Cup and that he has traveled up to Woodbine early just to train the colt himself and to make sure he was 100% ready to race. Alagna said he would not speculate before the race what the plans were for Artspeak after the Governor’s Cup. Artspeak was at his best and put in a tremendous effort in the Governor’s Cup. But right after the race, Alagna was off to Harrisburg to inspect yearlings for the upcoming sales and would not return any phone calls about the future of Artspeak. Now Myron Bell is stating that “The horse is weak in his stifles and that's why he made two breaks. He has already raced 10 times this year and we don't believe in racing two-year-olds more than 10 times. "That's what Captaintreacherous did. We want a 3-year-old and the best way to do that is to not burn them out as 2-year-olds.” Repeated attempts to reach Tony Alagna for more details have gone unanswered to both Harnesslink and Harness Racing Update. So now with Artspeak put out to pasture for the rest of the 2014 season, that leaves an opening for In The Arsenal to step up and steal some of Artspeaks “thunder” by sweeping the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs and then the Breeders Crown at the Meadowlands. It’s sort of the same route that Heston Blue Chip took in defeating Michael’s Power for three-year-old honors in 2012. Sired by American Ideal, In The Arsenal has won his last three starts and has five wins in his eight starts this season for trainer Kelvin Harrison. One of those wins was against undefeated Artspeak and ended his seven-race winning streak in the International Stallion Stake at Lexington’s Red Mile. Then in his next start, In The Arsenal brought an end to undefeated Yankee Bounty’s eight-race winning streak in the Historic Series Goshen Cup at Harrah’s Philadelphia. “Since his last win at Harrah’s,” said trainer Kelvin Harrison, “He (In The Arsenal) has been really feeling good. We are looking forward to racing in the Matron at Dover Downs next week and if all goes well then we will go next in the Breeders Crown.” By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink.com

Jim Simpson, the president of Hanover Shoe Farms and the members of the the Captaintreacherous racing group have announced that The Captain will be officially retired at Lexington's famed Red Mile during the races on Thursday October 2. Tony Alagna, the colt's trainer said "Captain just hasn't been himself for the last several weeks. He's been fighting a low respiratory bug and we just haven't been able to overcome it. Rather than take the chance of doing irreparable harm to this great horse, I think it would be wise for everybody concerned to have him retired at Hanover Shoe Farms. I have no doubts that he is destined to become a great sire. I very much look forward to the day when I will be looking at, buying and training his babies". Jim Simpson said that he looks forward to having the greatest son of the sport's supersire Somebeachsomewhere stand at Hanover. "Captaintreacherous was one of the greatest two and three year old pacers in the sport's history. It's now time for him to excel in the next stage of his remarkable career." Myron Bell, the colt's racing manager throughout his career said "I've been involved in Harness Racing for half a century. I've seen all of the greats during that time. Captaintreacherous has to rank right up there among the very best. In my entire career in the sport I've only predicted two horses as being "can't miss" sires. Those two were Artsplace and Western Ideal. The one quality that all three horses share is extreme courage. I have no doubt whatever that Captaintreacherous will follow in their footsteps in the stallion ranks. I look forward to buying and training a large number of his yearlings". Captaintreacherous was voted "Pacer of the Year" at both two and three. At 2, he won 8 of 10 starts and earned $918,253. At 3, he won 13 of 16 starts and earned $2,055,033 winning almost all of the Classic events including the three richest, the North American Cup, the Meadowlands Pace and the Breeders Crown. Captaintreacherous retires with earnings of $3,148,657. Dr. Bridgette Jablonsky in whose hands the Captain will be literally be in at Hanover can't wait until the horse gets to his next home. "I don't think I've ever been more excited about an incoming stallion. The Captain has it all, great performance on the racetrack, great courage, a fantastic pedigree and perhaps most important of all, he's drop dead gorgeous and correct, something that I'm certain he will transmit to his foals." Captaintreacherous will begin his stallion career in February of 2015. Captaintreacherous 2013 Captaintreacherous (Tim Tetrick) fighting the bit to win the Crown Murray Brown Hanover Shoe Farms, Inc.

Unbeaten two-year-old pacing colt, Artspeak, stamped himself as the top freshman colt in harness racing as he strolled to a five length triumph in capturing the $667,000 final of the Metro Pace at Mohawk Raceway Saturday. The race began with Lone Survivor (David Miller) left from post nine and was able to get to the lead with Lyons Again (Yannick Gingras) also leaving from post eight and getting the two-hole trip as they went to the opening quarter mile in :26.3. They raced that way to the half mile marker in :55.3 and that was when the action began to heat up as John Campbell came first-over with Go Daddy Go and following their outside cover was the 1/9 race favorite Artspeak and driver Scott Zeron. To the three-quarters in 1:23.3 Lone Survivor was still in command but coming off the final turn, Zeron tipped three-wide with Artspeak and without raising his whip nor lifting his lines for encouragement, Artspeak took off and left the field in his wake, winning in a romp in 1:50.2. Lyons Levi Lewis (Sylvain Filion) was second with Lyons Again third. “When we had Captaintreacherous and his career and he was such an amazing horse and to come back right after that with this colt is amazing,” said winning trainer Tony Alagna. “I talked to Scott (Zeron) last fall and talked with him about making the change and coming to the United States to drive. I told him if he was willing to come down and drive that I was willing to give him a shot. He’s made the commitment. He comes to the farm to train, baby racing and training before qualifiers and he deserved this win.” Sired by Western Ideal, bred and co-owned by Brittany Farms with Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and The Gym Partners, it was the sixth straight win for Artspeak. He paid $2.30 to win. “The primary ownership group for this horse is the same as Captaintreacherous,” said co-owner Marvin Katz, who has won the Metro final three times now, “Tony had trained the mare (The Art Museum, dam of Artspeak) and he loved the family and thought the mare would throw a good one. He selected the colt in Lexington and we put together the same partnership as Captaintreacherous. This never gets old I was telling Tony (Alagna). When you can win these types of races, this is a thrill and to be enjoyed.” “I really stuck my neck out going all by myself to New Jersey,” said winning driver Scott Zeron, “I worked as hard as I could this year. It’s Tony Alagna and Myron Bell. The two of them together made it happen. They helped me with the move. And this is reason I did it. To come back home and win a race like this with a great horse like this. This is once in a lifetime. “To be second over was a perfect trip for this horse,” Zeron said. “He follows horses so well. I have always had to put him on the front because he is 1/9. Today I was able to trip him out behind this really good horse of John’s (Campbell) and coming down the lane he was game. He is a freak of nature. He probably came home in :26.2 and I didn’t even chirp to him.” By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink.com

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 29 - Lifetime Pursuit continued her incredible hot streak Friday night at Mohawk by winning a division of the Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies. 13 three-year-old trotting fillies were split into two Simcoe Stakes divisions worth more than $103,000. Lifetime Pursuit picked up her fourth win in a row in the second $105,344 division. Leaving from post six with driver Brett Miller, Lifetime Pursuit was parked fourth around the first turn and followed Cantabs Fortune to the front in the second quarter. As soon as Cantabs Fortune touched down on the front, Lifetime Pursuit cleared to take control at the half-mile pole in :56. Lifetime Pursuit trotted by the three-quarter pole in 1:24.4 and turned for home without much challenge from her six other rivals. In the stretch, the daughter of Cantab Hall - Queen Of Grace never allowed her rivals to get any closer than a few lengths and strolled home to win by 2 ¼ lengths in 1:53.4. Sweetie Hearts finished second, while Chivaree Hanover was third and My Inspiration was fourth. Lifetime Pursuit is trained by Jimmy Takter for the Brittany Farms. Following the race, Myron Bell, the racing manager for Brittany Farms, noted that Lifetime Pursuit is a third generation filly for the farm. "We bought a daughter of Me Maggie back about 20 years ago and her name was Prime Mistress and she won about $20,000 on the racetrack and had a record of about :58," said Bell. "Her daughter is the dam of this filly and three generations later it's paid off." Lifetime Pursuit has now won four stake races in a row dating back to the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks on August 2. The Simcoe Stakes victory was her sixth win in 11 starts this year, the 12th win of her career and pushes her career earnings over $760,000. She paid $2.10 to win. In the first $103,845 Simcoe Stakes division, Designed To Be broke her streak of three second place finishes to win in a stakes record equaling time of 1:52.3. Scream And Shout was sent hard to the lead by Brett Miller and posted an opening quarter of :27.1, while Designed To Be and Sylvain Filion followed along in fourth. Miller didn't slow down the tempo in the middle half as Scream And Shout opened up a good sized lead on the field trotting by the half in :56.1 and the three-quarter pole in 1:24.2. In the third quarter, Filion right lined Designed To Be to the outside and she began the first over journey. Designed To Be would erase Scream And Shout's sizeable lead and trot by her half way down the lane to win by 3¼ lengths. Muscle Babe finished third, while Tosca was fourth. "Brett (Miller) was trying to give us the slip, but we caught him in the nick of time," said Designed To Be's trainer Julie Miller in the winner's circle. "The way the races are setting up she needs a target and she's willing to follow and attack." Miller trains the daughter of Donato Hanover - Sheer Soul Be for owners Al Libfeld and Marvin Katz. The Simcoe Stakes victory was Designed To Be's third win in seven starts this season and the eighth win of her career. She now has career earnings of more than $500,000. Designed To Be paid $2.10 to win. The three-year-old trotting fillies will be back in action next Friday at Mohawk for the eliminations of the $365,000 Elegantimage Stakes. Also on Friday night, two divisions were contested of the Champlain Stakes for two-year-old trotters. Habitat and Sylvain Filion took the first $124,621 Champlain division. A son of Conway Hall - Habits Best, Habitat, who was the 3/5 favourite, was put right on the front by Filion and set fractions of :27.4, :58. and 1:26.3. After opening up a sizable lead on the final turn, Habitat strolled home under wraps in :28.2 to win by 2 ½ lengths in 1:55. Muscle Diamond and Rick Zeron trotted a big last quarter of :27. to come from seventh to finish second. Aldebaran Eagle finish third, while Jetpedia rounded out the Superfecta. "He's not very big, but he's very powerful," said Filion following the race. "Turning for him he kind of got a little lost out there on the front end on a big track like this and I could hear Ricky (Zeron) coming at me, so I just asked him a bit and he took off right away." Trained by Ron Burke, Habitat is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Our Horse Cents Stables and Weaver Bruscemi. Habitat was a $50,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase. He has now won three times in five career starts and has earnings exceeding $94,000. Habitat paid $3.40 to win. In the second $124,621 division, another heavy favourite came through as French Laundry and Brett Miller won in 1:55.4. Sent off as the 3/5 favourite, French Laundry got away in fourth as the field made their way by the opening quarter marker. In the second quarter, French Laundry followed Lookslikeachipndale, who made a first up move to the lead, right to front to take control at the half in :57.4. After trotting by the three-quarter pole in 1:27.2, French Laundry quickly opened up a couple lengths at the top of the lane and trotted home under a confident hand drive from Miller to win by 2 ¾ lengths. Don't Rush, who was first over around the final turn, trotted a good final clip to finish second, while Lookslikeachipndale and Southwind Stryker were third and fourth respectively. "I've raced against him (French Laudnry) many times and he looks like a Cadillac to drive and he is," Miller said following the race. "I just kind of waited for the dust to settle and moved him to the front and he was very good." A son of Muscles Yankee - Creamy Mimi, French Laundry is conditioned by Jimmy Takter for owners Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. A $115,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase, French Laundry has now won four time in his six career starts. The Champlain Stakes victory pushes his earnings over the $100,000 mark. He paid $3.40 to win. Next up for the two-year-old trotters is the eliminations for the $365,000 William Wellwood Memorial next Friday. Grand Circuit action continues tomorrow night with the $634,000 Canadian Pacing Derby, the $667,000 Metro Pace, the $480,000 She's A Great Lady Stakes, the $207,000 Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old pacing fillies and the $218,000 Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotters. Post time is 7:25 p.m. by Mark McKelvie, for WEG  

The third time's a charm for The Art Museum. At least that's how it's shaping up for the harness racing pacing broodmare. Her third foal is Artspeak, who has started his career with three consecutive wins, including the New Jersey Sire Stakes championship. Artspeak, a son of stallion Western Ideal, races in the third of three Nassagaweya Stakes divisions for 2-year-old pacers Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack in Ontario. He heads to Canada off a 2-1/2 length win in 1:50.4 in a conditioned race Aug. 1 at the Meadowlands. No 2-year-old pacer has gone faster this season. "The mare's been knocking on the door and maybe this is the one that's going to make her a little more prolific," said Tony Alagna, who trains Artspeak. "It's too early to tell, but he's done everything we asked him to do so far. Now he'll go from the Jersey breds to open company, but he was very good in his last start at the Meadowlands. Saturday night we'll know more." Alagna is quite familiar with The Art Museum and her racing-aged offspring. The Art Museum was in the stable of trainer Erv Miller, where Alagna worked prior to starting his own barn, but never made it to the races because of an injury. Yet she made an impression. "She was a great gaited mare with a great pedigree and I had a feeling at some point she was going to throw something decent," Alagna said. "The first two foals were close, but not what this one has been. He seems like he'll be the best one the mare's had so far." The Art Museum's first foal, the filly Acquavella, at age 2 won a division of the New Jersey Sire Stakes and finished second in a division of the Reynolds Memorial, but struggled with health issues. Her second foal, the now 3-year-old colt Fort Knox, last season finished second to Luck Be Withyou in a Champlain Stakes division and has earned $65,241. "Acquavella was meant to be a top filly," Alagna said. "She had some health problems and never reached her full potential. I thought she was meant to be a really good filly, so I went back the next year and bought Fort Knox. He's a nice horse, but just couldn't go to the next level. Artspeak looks like he's got all the tools to be a top horse." Purchased for $100,000 at the 2013 Lexington Selected Sale, Artspeak's family also includes 2007 Meadowlands Pace winner Southwind Lynx. Artspeak is owned by co-breeder Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco, and In The Gym Partners. Artspeak is the 4-5 morning line favorite in his division of the Nassagaweya, starting from post eight with driver Scott Zeron. His division includes Battle of Waterloo runner-up Sporting The Look, plus Some Power, Read The Proposal, and Pierce Hanover. Some Power sold for $270,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale under the name Way Bay Hanover. His family includes Dan Patch Award winner Popcorn Penny and he is a half-brother to stakes-winners Westwardho Hanover and Woodstock Hanover. Read The Proposal is a full brother to stakes-winners Lucky Bettor, Bettor B Lucky, and Bet On Luck. Pierce Hanover is a full brother to stakes-winner Passmaster Hanover and top open performer Philos Hanover in addition to being a half-brother to stakes-winner Panther Hanover. Artspeak is among four horses from Alagna's stable competing in the Nassagaweya divisions. Edison -- whose family includes millionaires Delinquent Account, Artiscape, and Western Shore -- is in the first division while Trading Up and Rock On The Hill are in the second split. For many of the horses in the Nassagaweya, it is either a final prep for the upcoming Metro Pace at Mohawk, or an audition. "Myron Bell picked (Edison) out of the catalog because he's got a phenomenal pedigree and he's really started to come into himself his last couple starts," Alagna said, referring to co-owner Brittany Farms' racing manager. "Rock On The Hill was much improved his last start. I want to give him a shot to see if he's ready to go in the Metro, and if he's not, we'll skip it. But he's a horse on the improve. Trading Up was very sick his last start at The Meadows. He was loaded with mucous. We'll see if he fits in, as well. "It's a lot better to spend the $1,500 starting fee in the Nassagaweya to see how you fit compared to the starting fee in the Metro." The first Nassagaweya division also features Dream Maker Series champion The Wayfaring Man, as well as Late Night, who is a half-brother to millionaire Real Nice, and Asap Hanover, whose family includes multiple Dan Patch Award winner Eternal Camnation. Mohawk hosts a stakes event in Eternal Camnation's honor earlier on Saturday's card. Battle of Waterloo winner Go Daddy Go is in the second division, which also includes Badix Hanover, who is a full brother to millionaire Big Jim. Alagna also has three horses in Saturday's Eternal Camnation divisions for 2-year-old female pacers - Bedroomconfessions, Cashaway, and A Plus. In addition, two-time defending Pacer of the Year Captaintreacherous is in the preferred pace. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications

East Rutherford, NJ - The $257,700 United States Pacing Championship (USPC) will provide the stage for nine of the finest in the aged pacing division to do battle on Hambletonian Day at The Meadowlands. A testament to the quality of the group is the fact that the combined career earnings of these nine pacers is in excess of $20 million. Among the chief contenders in Saturday's race is Captaintreacherous who dominated his division and was subsequently named "Pacer of the Year" as a freshman and sophomore, a distinction he shares with only the immortal Niatross. Faced this season at age four with graduation into the open ranks to battle the best of the older set was expected to be a daunting task and the competition has been fierce. Captaintreacherous was born to be a star with the pedigree and presence to demand $250,000 at the 2011 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale. He came from the greatly anticipated first crop of champion racehorse Somebeachsomewhere and boasts a very accomplished maternal line. White Birch Farm bred and raised the colt and when Myron Bell and Tony Alagna saw him during their annual farm canvass they agreed he was priority one. The winning bid was made by Bell on behalf of a partnership that included George Segal's Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and Myron and Stephanie Bell's Riverview Farm. White Birch proprietor Michael Parisi was offered a stake and remained a partner on the horse as well. They would choose the nom de course Captaintreacherous Racing for this endeavor. Myron Bell has been the racing manager for George Segal's Brittany Farms for more than thirty years. Throughout their relationship many of the sport's stars both on the track and in the breeding shed have campaigned under the Brittany banner. Over the past decade, Myron has managed a number of partnerships that include several high-profile Standardbred owners and breeders with remarkable results. Captaintreacherous represents the culmination of a lifetime spent breeding, buying and racing the best. "My groups, such as Captaintreacherous Racing, are looking for that top horse that we can race successfully at the highest level and then hopefully have a future in the breeding shed. I could not do any of this without their confidence and support," said Bell. "We bought just one colt from Somebeachsomewhere's first crop and our aim was to buy the best one. "Captaintreacherous was the number one colt from that crop, in our opinion. He showed beautifully and offered the best pedigree that I'd seen for years. He had all of the attributes that we seek; conformation, attitude, ability...and he had no weaknesses." Things began well for Captaintreacherous. He seared through his two-year-old campaign with Tim Tetrick joining the team as his regular driver, listing the Wilson and Metro among eight wins in ten starts for over $900,000 and his first "Pacer of the Year" title. Brought back at three with great expectations, "The Captain" exceeded even those lofty ambitions and ran the table with the North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace and Breeders Crown among his thirteen triumphs and $2 million in seasonal earnings. Along the way Captaintreacherous captured the hearts of racing fans with his grit and determination, often appearing on the brink of defeat only to battle back and get to the wire first. His talent and will; coupled with his breeding and imposing presence, drew the attention of several suitors for his services as a stallion. Ultimately it would be industry leader Hanover Shoe Farms whose participation in a syndication agreement led to a decision to stand Captaintreacherous at their Pennsylvania nursery when he goes to stud in 2015. "It is absolutely imperative that you have a strong syndicate when the horse goes to stud," Bell opined. "You need breeders with the right mares to want the horse to succeed and support him with those mares. If they are shareholders they are enhancing their own interests as well as that of the horse. After the first two seasons in the shed, when a new star retires to stud, if you don't have that support, interest wanes and you have a few down years even if the horse hits. "We sold a few shares of the horse to serious breeders after his freshman season to establish value. There was understandably great interest in "Captain" last year and by Lexington we had a few serious offers to stand him. Hanover bought a significant interest in him and they have the type of mares we seek to give him a chance to be his best. We will syndicate him further at the end of this racing season and he will go to stud at Hanover." For his career, Captaintreacherous has won 22 of 31 starts and over $3.1 million, averaging a remarkable $100,000 per start. He won the Meadowlands Maturity his first race this season, but is winless in his last four starts. In Saturday's USPC as "The Captain" looks to move forward off a wicked tune-up in last week's prep, he finds himself starting from post eight, just outside Sweet Lou who has won seven straight and been the star of this division thus far in 2014. "We had no illusions that he was going to go through this season against these types of horses without getting beat. I think he has raced well in each of his starts this year and was fantastic last week, pacing his last half in :52 flat. Sweet Lou has been very good, but I don't fear him. My feeling is that "Captain" is improving in each race and will continue to improve. He needs to get lucky at the draw and you always need racing luck, that's a given. "Tony Alagna and Tim Tetrick have done a marvelous job racing Captaintreacherous. To campaign a horse at that level over three seasons, keep him fit, healthy and sound is a testament to Tony and his crew. Tim handles the pressure that comes with the job beautifully and deserves tremendous credit for his body of work driving "Captain". It truly "takes a village" to campaign a horse like this and I really feel that we have yet to see his best. "One of the most gratifying elements of this ride has been the response to Captaintreacherous by the harness community and particularly the racing fans," Myron said in closing. "He has given the ownership group many thrills and the enthusiasm shown by his fans is right at the top of that list." The complete field: UNITED STATES PACING CHAMPIONSHIP - $257,700 1. GOLDEN RECEIVER CoCallahan JaHuff 2. STATE TREASURER DaMiller IaMoore 3. THINKING OUT LOUD JCampbell RoMcintosh 4. SUNFIRE BLUE CHIP ScZeron JiTakter 5. FOILED AGAIN YaGingras RoBurke 6. BETTOR'S EDGE MaKakaley RoBurke 7. SWEET LOU RoPierce RoBurke 8. CAPTAINTREACHEROUS TiTetrick ToAlagna 9. CLEAR VISION BrAMiller RoBurke   The US Pacing Championship is race five on Saturday's All-Star Hambletonian card and clearly one of the most anticipated races of the day. The fifteen-race program begins at noon, gates open at 10:00am with the annual Hambo hat giveaway. The Hambletonian may be viewed on CBS Sports Network from 4:00 to 5:30pm. Find more information including access to a free Hambo Day program by visiting The Meadowlands website. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands  

The annual Tattersalls Summer Mixed Sale at The Meadowlands witnessed hot and fast bidding that resulted in a 34.7% increase in average per horse sale price from the previous year.   Of the 123 racehorses that sold for a gross of $2,544,200, the average reached $20,685. The main attraction of the well-attended Harness Horse auction was the "drop-in-the-box" nature of the 30 horses that raced in the two days prior to the sale, and over 100 that raced in the last week.   The highlight of the sale was the offering of World Champion trotter Sevruga 1:50.3 who was a $160,000 post-sale purchase. A winner of over $1 million lifetime, he will start in the $300,000 John Cashman, Jr Memorial on Hambo Day for new owners Scott and Joe Pennacchio.   Long-time horse owner, amateur driver, and current president of the Florida Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association, Joe Pennacchio noted that Sevruga "was one of the rare, great trotters around, and may be in just a little over his head in Grand Circuit stakes company. We look forward to racing him in Open and Late Closing events."   Consigned by Northwood Bloodstock Agency, Sevruga was one of nearly 50 horses represented by Bob Boni. Following the sale, Boni noted pleasure with the day's events and stated that "it was a very strong horse sale. Good horses sold well, as they usually do."   The annual racehorse reduction of Jules Siegel's Fashion Farm was particularly well-received, bolstered by several high-priced youngsters. Topping the overall 2-year-old sales was the PA eligible Broadway Hall gelding On The Sly, who showed consistently flat lines around 1:58 and fetched $51,000 from Barbara Boese of Milton, DE.   Preferred Equine Marketing represented another well-placed $75,000 Fashion Farm sale with the American Ideal colt, Ideal Fashion p,3,1:52.1f--`14. Kyle Spagnola signed for the 3-year-old NY eligible colt who had just won his last start at Yonkers in 1:53.4h.   Toward the end of the sale, prospective purchasers not willing to go home empty handed saw stars with Moonliteonthebeach p,4,1:51--`14, who was consigned by Preferred Equine Marketing for Scott Kimelman and the Blue Chip Bloodstock Partners. The bidding was fierce and competitive for the handsome 4-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere who just paced in 1:49.3 finishing second at Pocono just 12 hours before the sale. When the dust settled, Andrew Harris signed the winning $85,000 ticket for trainer P.J. Fraley and owner Jeff Bamond.   Lynch winning 3-year-old pacing filly Fancy Desire p,3,1:49 was the anticipated sale topper, and was hammered down for $195,000, however failed to reach the required reserve price.   Tattersalls sales manager David Reid was happy with the overall results of the sale, and was optimistic about the health of the industry. "Sales have been good. This was a very active group of racehorses, which always translates into active bidding. My only disappointment was the relative absence of Canadian buyers. It serves as a true indicator of the importance of the slots programs in these regional markets. Having said that, with an eye on the future, bring on the Hambletonian." by Chris Tully, for Tattersalls  

The final edition of Breakfast With The Babies for the 2014 season began with Hambletonian favorite Father Patrick getting in some prep work in advance of next Saturday's big dance. His performance did nothing to encourage any Hambo fence-riders that may have been considering buying a $15,000 ticket to that dance. Yannick Gingras gave him a tour of the oval in 1:52 flat, back half in :54.4, last quarter :26.2 about as easy as it could be done. It looks like "All systems go" for team Father Patrick. Last year's champion three year old filly pacer I Luv The Nitelife made her return to the races this morning in winning fashion for owners Richard and Joanne Young. She has been nursed back to the races by trainer Chris Ryder after her season ending injury last fall and she looked sound and happy in her 2014 debut. Driver Tim Tetrick settled the mare in third through a slow 57.2 half, moved her on the last turn to a stretch lead then flashed her grit by refusing to yield to the late challenge of Bakersfield with a 27.1 close to the 1:53.2 mile. A pair of Meadowlands Pace finalists teed it up in the last race of the day and Lyonssomewhere got the best of JK Endofanera here by sprinting home in 26.2 on the end of a 1:51.1 mile. Trainer Jimmy Takter put the speedy colt on the lead through friendly fractions and had enough to rebuff JK Endofanera's close. So far as the freshmen, Habitat, a speedy Conway Hall colt that had made a pair of breaks in NYSS action recently, impressed with an effortless 1:55.3 / 27.1 win with Yannick Gingras aboard. Ron Burke trains colt for himself and partners Weaver Bruscemi and Our Horse Cents Stable. The group paid $50,000 for Habitat at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale last fall. Trond Smedshammer won a couple this morning, the first with a nice Yankee Glide out of Calchips Finisher named Finish Line. He sat a pocket to first timer Sugarmakesmecrazy and Ake Svanstedt, nailing that one in the final strides of the 1:58.1 / 28.1 mile.He was a $50,000 Lexington buy for Trond's American Viking Stable, Diane Giuliano and Purple Haze. Trond came right back with the Andover Hall x Chez Belle filly Chezando, closing ground into a 28.4 final quarter for the 2:00.4 score. She cost Purple Haze and Michael Parisi $70,000 at Lexington last fall. The last of the baby trots fittingly saw Jimmy Takter win in 2:00.1 with French Laundry, a good Muscles Yankee colt who won a NJSS event in 1:56 a few weeks ago. He just held off the impressive closing rush of the $175,000 Cantab Hall colt Colbert who was making his very first start for Svanstedt. Pacers came around in the tenth race and ASAP Hanover won for the third time in morning trials, this one in 1:52.4 with Tim Tetrick driving. Linda Toscano trains the $150,000 Lexington sale colt by Somebeachsomewhere from Allamerican Coed for John Mehlenbacher. He has impressed and improved in each of his three outings. This time Tetrick put him on the lead and sprinted home in 26.4 in hand. Penji Hanover paced home hard to be second. Trainer Tony Alagna had a good day beginning with the eleventh where a pair of his pacing fillies went to the wire together with Cashaway tracking down Martinique in the final strides to get the 1:54.1 win. Cashaway was second in the recently contested NJSS final for Tim Tetrick, who drove the Western Ideal x CPA $105,000 Lexington sale grad today for owners Brittany Farms and Marvin Katz. New Jersey Sires Stakes champion Artspeak got some work in this morning, leading all the way and drawing off late in 1:53.2 over the pocket sitting Stover. The winner also hails from the Alagna barn with Scott Zeron doing the driving for owners Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and In The Gym Partners (John Fodera and Steve Wienick). Racing manager Myron Bell bought the Western Ideal colt from The Art Museum for $100,000 in Lexington on their behalf and it certainly looks as though they've got a good one here. A Plus completed the Alagna natural hat trick by winning in 1:54.1 / 27.3 with Zeron aboard. She's an American Ideal filly out of the Brittany broodmare Has An Attitude that Tony bought for himself with partners In The Gym, Massey and Sbrocco for $60,000 in Kentucky. Better Said was a good second here with a late move for Toscano and Tetrick. Ed Hart's nice Cam's card Shark colt Dealt A Winner prevented an Alagna-slam when he held safe over Tony's closing Rock On The Hill in 1:54.2 for Brian Sears. Jeff Snyder owns the winner, a $35,000 Harrisburg bargain buy last fall. Live racing resumes at 7:15 this evening with the John Cashman Memorial eliminations headlining the thirteen race card. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands

Three trotters from the sophomore class of 2010 have come online with their initial crops this year; Muscle Massive is standing at Hanover, Lucky Chucky at Winbak in New York and Holiday Road in Ontario. Pilgrim’s Taj is a fourth, but he only spent one year in Canada, after which he was relocated to Ohio and ultimately exported to Finland. That being the case, we’ll look at the first three. To this point restricted races have provided the only basis for judging them, but the open portion of the season commences this week with elimination rounds for the Peter Haughton and Merrie Annabelle at the Meadowlands as well as several splits of the Arden at The Meadows. Much of the focus has been on Muscle Massive and Lucky Chucky, beneficiaries of generous state bred programs who finished one-two in the Hambletonion. The former was a $450,000 yearling who was lightly raced at two but managed to win the Hambletonion as well as the Dancer at three, while Chucky was a precocious freshman, showing wins in the Valley Victory, Matron, ISS and Bluegrass. He was the 3/2 favorite in the Hambletonion and appeared on his way to victory when 6/1 Muscle Massive, piloted by Ron Pierce, ruined his day. Regardless, Chucky did win the Canadian Trotting Classic and Colonial at three, and he earned more money than Muscle Massive both years. Both sold close to seventy yearlings last year, with Chucky’s brood averaging quite a bit more. Both have seen their stud fees fluctuate before their first crops hit the track. Muscle Massive started at $10,000, only to have his fee cut to $7,500 and $6,000 in successive years. Cantab Hall, Donato Hanover, Andover Hall and Explosive Matter all command higher fees than their younger stablemate at Hanover. Chucky, on the other hand, started at $7,500 in New York, was dropped to $5,000 during a year spent in Pennsylvania, and came back up to $7,500 when he returned to Winbak, where nineteen-year-old Muscles Yankee stands for $2,500 more. Muscle Massive has benefited from the success of his older brother, Muscle Mass, sire of O’Brien winner Riveting Rosie and the successful OSS colt Muscle Matters. Thus far Muscle Massive has given us some outstanding fillies. Gatka Hanover, a big rugged gal out of the Conway Hall mare Girlie Tough, from the Ron Burke barn, has left many wondering where her ceiling is. Gatka rolled through a couple of baby races and has now chalked up three wins in the PA Sire Stakes, one each at The Meadows, Pocono and Harrah’s. Matt Kakaley steered her to an effortless four length win in 1:57 in her latest. She leaves from the five for Matt K in Friday’s first Merrie Annabelle elimination. Gatka takes on Lucky Chucky’s daughter, Lock Down Lindy, who drew plenty of attention with a very strong first over win in a Merrie Annabelle Prep at the Meadowlands Friday for Scott Zeron and Tony Alagna. Another Muscle Massive star in the making is Jimmy Takter’s Speak To Me, an $80,000 Harness Breeders purchase by Myron Bell. She is also three-for three in the PA Sire Stakes and has trotted in 1:55. Last time out, in a $57,000 sire stakes division at Harrah’s, Speak To Me gapped the field by ten on her way to an easy win at a stingy 1/5 price. Unfortunately this filly was not staked to the Merrie Annabelle and will be missing from the fray on Friday night. Blessings Counted is another talented filly by Muscle Massive. She was second to Speak To Me in a PASS race at The Meadows a couple of weeks ago and won a $57,000 race at Harrah’s in her latest start. She is not eligible to the Merrie Annabelle but is entered in a split of the Arden at The Meadows on Friday. Missive and Youth Gone Wild, both winners in the Stallion Series, will also race in the Arden. Jersey Strong, a talented filly with a win in the PA All Stars and a second in the PASS, isn’t entered at The Meadowlands or The Meadows on Friday. The top colt by Muscle Massive is Ake Svanstedt’s Lima Pride, who beat Jimmy Takter’s 1/9 favorite The Bank in a split of the Hickory Pride when The Bank went on a run at the three-quarters. Lima Pride, a $25,000 yearling purchase, was not nominated to the Peter Haughton. The priciest freshman trotter by any first crop stallion is Mr Lucky Luke, a $450,000 Lucky Chucky half- brother to Muscle Massive, Muscle Mass and 2010 Merrie Annabelle winner, Thatsnotmyname. The Cancelliere brothers, of Detour Hanover fame, purchased him at Lexington in the fall. He has yet to make a pari-mutuel start; let’s hope he generates a better ROI than Detour has. As for the Lucky Chucky colts and fillies that have raced, there is no eye popping Gatka Hanover out there, but there are plenty of good ones. I already mentioned Merrie Annabelle candidate Lock Down Lindy, who possesses the same rugged demeanor as Gatka. She is a half-sister to 2006 HOY in Canada, Majestic Son. He has sired Harper Blue Chip, Murmur Hanover and Charmed Life. Ray Schnittker has Gabe The Bear Dean, a $105,000 Harness Breeders buy, who has an impressive wire-to wire five length win in the NYSS at Buffalo. Jonas Czernyson has a few Lucky Chucky youngsters in his barn and he’s high on all of them. At the end of June Hot Start, a half-sister to Religulous, won a $27,000 NYSS split at Vernon Downs for Corey Callahan. Next time out, at Tioga, she cut most of the mile from the outside post only to lose to paternal sister My Twisted Sister, from the Paul Kelley barn. Hot Start is entered in the second Merrie Annabelle elimination on Friday. Nunkeri is another very promising Lucky Chucky filly from the Czernyson barn. She finished second to the Muscle Hill filly Josie’s Joy at the Meadowlands the other night, race timed in 1:57.2 as the second choice. Nunkeri won her start previous to that one, a $28,000 NYSS division at Tioga. George Ducharme’s sharp looking Conway Hall filly, Concentration, pressured her all the way home in a 1:59.3 mile. On the male side Mal and Janet Burroughs’ Mambo Blue Chip, a $40,000 Harness Breeders buy, won a $28,000 split of the NYSS in 1:57.2 at Tioga last time out. Holiday Road, a $115,000 yearling who is a full brother to Ken Warkentin, was lightly raced, making only ten lifetime stars. While staying on the track was an issue, speed wasn’t; he won the Peter Haughton at two and a split of the Dancer at three. He opened his stallion career for $4,500 at Seelster Farms and now stands for $3,500. This week the Holiday Roads started to turn heads and earn respect at Mohawk as they performed admirably on the various OSS platforms. John Bax’s Hemi Seelster was long and tough winning a Grassroots division in 1:58.4 at 2/1. It was noteworthy that the gelding engaged in a head to head battle the length of the stretch with Pilgrim’s Joy, a son of first crop stallion Pilgrim’s Taj. Tony Alagna’s filly Gee O’Keeffe logged a very strong second in a $53,000 OSS Gold leg at Mohawk for Jody Jamieson, losing a length to the highly regarded Kadabra filly Juanita’s Fury. And Keith Jones’ gelding, It’s Huw You Know, was an upset Grassroots winner in 2:00.3 on Monday at 75/1, paying $159.60. And Ontheroad De Vie made a very impressive brush on the back as he came from the 10 post to finish second for Rick Zeron in a Grassroots leg. The Holiday Roads are looking good. Rock N Roll Heaven and Sportswriter are lighting it up in the freshman pacing division, but it’s expected that the trotters will take a little longer to get their bearings and hit their stride. Muscle Massive, Lucky Chucky and Holiday Road will all be prospering when they do. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

Meadowlands Pace day provided another perfect morning for Breakfast With The Babies with comfortable temperatures and little to no wind. The two-year-old trotting star of the morning was 1:57.2 winner Lock Down Lindy, a filly from the first crop of Lucky Chucky from Love Lockdown. She led through a comfortable 1:01.2 half before Scott Zeron gave her the green light resulting in a 56 flat final half with a 27.2 closing quarter. Tony Alagna conditions the $40,000 Lexington buy for the partnership of Mystical Marker Farms, Crawford Farms, Joe Sbrocco and In The Gym Partners. Alagna and Zeron came right back to win the very next race with Michelle Crawford's homebred Conway Hall x Classic Yankee colt Titanium. He left for position from his outside post then cruised through an open rail into a 28.3 final quarter to take the 2:01 record. On the pacing side, Tony also sent out the sharp looking Somebeachsomewhere colt Dreams Beachboy for his second outing, this one an effortless 1:54.4 / 27 win with Zeron aboard. Dreams Beachboy was a $150,000 Harrisburg purchase by Myron Bell for Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz and Stillwater Partners. Ake Svanstedt continued to expose his freshmen, sending out three more colt winners this morning starting in the opener with Curfew, a Muscle Hill x After Midnight $75,000 Lexington yearling making his debut. He moved to the front past the quarter and ended the 1:59.2 mile with a 29.2 final quarter. He is owned by the Top Ten Racing Stable. Canappealformore was the next Svanstedt winner. This one is a Brittany bred by Cantab Hall from Appeal To Reason, haltered at Harrisburg for $60,000 by LGJ Invest. Ake held him in a loose pocket then wore down the leader with a 29.4 end to a 2:00.2 mile. A bit later, One Direction was a 1:59.2 front end winner for Svanstedt and owner / breeder Ernst Gerbaulet of Germany. He's a Deweycheatumnhowe from Angelina Chip. Tangerine Bi looked strong for Jimmy Takter, closing considerable ground into a 27.3 last quarter for a 2:00.1 win. She's a Yankee Glide that cost Takter, Katz, Fielding & Fielding $70,000 last fall in Lexington. John Campbell directed a pair of winners. On the trot it was the Donato Hanover filly Love Her Madly he steered though a quick 27.4 end to a successful 2:00.1 mile for Ross Croghan. She belongs to Let It Ride Stables, RBH Ventures and Joseph Myers who spent $65,000 on her at Harrisburg. Campbell later scored with the pacing filly Game Theory, a $75,000 Rock N Roll Heaven first cropper from Best Laid Plans for the Cancelliere brothers with a sharp 27.2 end to a 1:55.3 mile while holding off the good looking Sportswriter filly Capela. Owner / trainer Troyce Thomas drove his own Village Jolt filly Fie Fy Fo to a 1:56 flat win. She cost just $9,000 at Harrrisburg. The pacing colts sprinted some fast halves in their trials. Asap Hanover was a winner in his very first try for Toscano and Tetrick with a 56.1 back half, 26.2 quarter on the end of a 1:56.4 mile. He's a $150,000 Lexington Somebeachsomewhere colt owned by John Mehlenbacher of Ontario. Two fast and expensive Somebeach colts hooked up through a vicious 54.4 last half of a 1:57.1 mile with the $100,000 buy Southwind Torque holding off the $215,000 bonus baby Mohegan Blue Chip. Dave Miller handled the winner for Chris Ryder and owners Bob Mondillo and Craig Handerson. Qualifiers closed out the day with the speedy but erratic Master Of Law making his debut for the Takter barn. He wowed the crowd of veteran onlookers with a wicked close from well back into a :55.3 on the board final half of a 1:52.3 mile to get by Spider Blue Chip in the last few strides. Master Of Law was well back at the 57 half, he must've trotted his last half in the :53 range for Takter. Frank Antonacci of Lindy Farms declared post-race that, "Nobody has a faster horse than Master Of Law. He needed a change of scenery, a fresh approach so we took him to Jimmy. Look out Sebastian K, we're comin' for ya!" Tonight's races begin at 6:30 and will be one of the best offerings of the season. Watch the WR Haughton FFA final and Meadowlands Pace on CBS Sports Network from 9:00 to 10:00pm. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands    

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