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

Whether you are a devoted harness racing fan, a purist of the Standardbred sport, a gambler or just someone who likes to watch a great event, then look no further than the Meadowlands Racetrack this Saturday, November 30. It’s a once in a lifetime match-up as Captaintreacherous, the three-year-old pacing machine, looks to close out his 2013 race season going against nine of the best older pacers in harness racing in the $512,000 final of the TVG Series. Voted the 2012 Pacer of the Year by the United States Harness Writers Association (USHWA), Captaintreacherous has lived up to those standards again in 2013. He has competed in 15 races this season, won 13 of them and lost the other two in photo finishes. He has a record at a mile of 1:47.1 and earnings this year of $2,055,033. Trained by Tony Alagna and owned by the Captaintreacherous Racing Stable out of Versailles, KY, the son of Somebeachsomewhere was a yearling purchase for $250,000 and worth every penny and then some as he now sports career earnings of $2,973,286. Now on Saturday he will be all out to prove once again he is the best pacer in the world for the second straight year. But it will not be an easy task as he faces nine opponents, many of whom have years of experience and tons of speed. Leading the way is Foiled Again, the richest pacer in the history of harness racing with more than $5.7 million in earnings. With a victory he will be challenging Captaintreacherous for the votes in the Pacer of the Year balloting in December by the membership of USHWA and the race secretaries. For three straight years world champion Foiled Again has earned over $1 million for trainer and co-owner Ron Burke. The nine-year-old gelded son of Dragon Again never seems to know where the finish line is. He continues races first-up on the outside and if he can’t get to the lead he just grinds it out against opponents with great success. Also in the race is Pet Rock, whose displays of raw unbridled speed saw him score world records on two different sized tracks in 2013, the fastest a dazzling 1:47 mile. Other standouts in the race include the 2011 Two-Year-Old Pacer of the Year, Sweet Lou, Warrawee Needy, Golden Receiver, Bolt The Duer, Modern Legend, Dynamic Youth and Bettor’s Edge. “Of course we would be happier with post four than post eight,” said Myron Bell, spokesman for Captaintreacherous Racing. “But the racing gods of the post position draw did not hear me. I promise everyone that Captaintreacherous will be heard from in this race. Our goals this year were to win the Meadowlands Pace, win the North America Cup and win the Breeders Crown so we could get an invitation to race in the TVG Final. Now it is up to Captaintreacherous and our driver Tim Tetrick to put the icing on the cake with a win this Saturday. “I am looking to have a great night on Saturday, win or lose,” Bell said. “He’s (Captaintreacherous) record speaks for himself. Of course I think he can beat these horses and I know he could lose too. But I am also happy because this race is for the fans. Anyone who loves a good horse race has to come to the Meadowlands on Saturday.” In addition to the TVG Pace Final, the 13-race program also features the $500,000 TVG Final for trotters headlined by Market Share, Arch Madness and Wishing Stone. There is the $534,500 final of the Governors Cup for two-year-old pacing colts, the $494,750 final of the Valley Victory for two-year-old trotters, the $465,150 final of the Goldsmith Maid for two-year-old trotting fillies, $394,950 Final of the Three Diamonds for two-year-old pacing fillies and the $167,700 Nadia Lobell Pace for three-year-old fillies. By Steve Wolf for Harnesslink.com  

World champion three-year-old pacing filly, I Luv The Nitelife, is done racing for the 2013 season and was not entered in the Nadia Lobell Pace this Saturday at the Meadowlands. Trainer Chris Ryder was very upset over the incident. “She has a slab fracture of her right knee,” Ryder said. “We are mortified. We do not know how this happened. She has been a great filly and it has been an unbelievable season. According to co-owner Joanne Young, “I Luv The Nitelife jogged early this morning and was fine. Then later in her stall her groom saw that she was lame and got a hold of Chris who called in the veterinarian. “She qualified last week and was perfect,” Young said. “It’s so sad that she cannot make her final race this Saturday, but better this happened now then maybe in the race on Saturday. We will explore the options of surgery and see if she can come back and race next year.” For the 2013 season, I Luv The Nitelife, sired by Rocknroll Hanover, raced 15 times with 13 wins, one second and one third place finish. She won $1,253,757 in purses and took a lifetime mark of 1:48.3. Lifetime she has 17 wins in 25 starts with earnings of $1,943,287 for owners Richard and Joanne Young of Coconut Creek, FL. Her major stakes victories include the Breeders Crown, Jugette, Simcoe, Valley Forge, Miss New Jersey, Mistletoe Shalee, James Lynch and the Fan Hanover. “What a sensational season we had with her.” Young added. “We had the same situation happen with Put On A Show and after a year’s rest she came back to race again. “And if it is not in the cards for Nitelife to race again, then we will be very happy to have her make babies for us to race.” By Steve Wolf for Harnesslink.com

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

Once again Foiled Again showed his heels to his much younger rivals, coming first-over for driver Yannick Gingras, wearing down pacesetter Sweet Lou and then holding off Warrawee Needy to win the $50,000 TVG Series Pace final leg at the Meadowlands Saturday. Bolt The Duer (Mark Macdonald) and Golden Receiver (Corey Callahan) battled early for control of the lead with Golden Receiver winning out by the opening quarter mile in :27.1. Then Sweet Lou (David Miller) came first up and cleared to the lead in the backstretch by the half mile in :53.4. It was then that Gingras started up first-over with Foiled Again from fifth place and they started working their way towards the leaders. Past the three-quarters in 1:22, Foiled Again was poised to confront Sweet Lou with Warrawee Needy (Tim Tetrick) gobbling up the second-over trip. As they started down the stretch Foiled Again collared Sweet Lou to take the lead and then with a true grit effort, dug in and held off Warrawee Needy to win by a neck in 1:49.3. Modern Legend (John Campbell) closed well to be third. Now the richest pacer in the history of harness racing, Foiled Again posted his tenth win on the year. The nine-year-old gelded son of Dragon Again sports 75 wins during his career with lifetime earnings of $5,774,968, $1,148,984 of that total earning just this year. It is his third straight year of winning more than $1 in a single season. Foiled Again is trained by Ron Burke and is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and the JJK Stable. Sent off as the 3/2 betting favorite, Foiled Again paid $5.00 to win. “For me it was a Catch-22,” Burke said. “In the backstretch I got Sweet Lou on the front end and I have Foiled coming and I want them to dig in and hang on but Foiled Again is a bit tougher and I knew he would wear him down late. This horse races good in the fall, good in the spring, good in the winter. Just because he does not only win in the summer people count him out but he is so good.  He is not super fast but goes the same mile week in week out.” Burke also stated that Sweet Lou would return and race next year. But he felt that after tonight’s race, Fred And Ginger may call it a career and head to stallion duty. Fred And Ginger did not finish the race tonight and Burke said he has had some heart issues that is ending his career. Charisma Hanover hangs on in Nadia Lobell Preview Charisma Hanover was bearing out badly in the stretch but still able to hold on over a determined Aunt Caroline in capturing the $25,000 Nadia Lobell Preview for three-year-old pacing fillies. The race started off with UF Dragon’s Queen (Tim Tetrick) taking the early lead with Parlee Beach (Mark Macdonald) leaving hard from post ten to grab the two-hole spot. Going around the first turn saw Charisma Hanover, the 1/5 favorite, coming first over and clearing to the lead after the opening quarter mile in :27.2. Going down the backstretch, Charisma Hanover and driver Yannick Gingras settled into the lead at the half in :55.3. Then Aunt Caroline (Scott Zeron) came first-over with Mattie Terror Girl (David Miller) grabbing the second-over cover. Past the three-quarters in 1:23.3, Charisma Hanover still looked comfortable on the lead. As they started down the stretch, Charisma Hanover began to bear out and half way down the stretch Aunt Caroline moved to the inside with a burst of speed and nearly collared Charisma Hanover as she continued to bear to the outside but was game enough to hold on and win by neck over Aunt Caroline in 1:51.4. UF Dragon’s Queen was third. It was the fifth straight win and 13th victory on the year for Charisma Hanover, who is sired by Dragon Again. She is trained by Ron Burke and is owned by the Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi, both of Pennsylvania. Charisma Hanover paid $2.40 to win. Next week at the Meadowlands Charisma Hanover will once again meet with world champion I Luv The Nitelife in the $200,000 final of the Nadia Lobell Pace. By Steve Wolf for Harnesslink.com

Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment presented nine preview qualifying races at 6:00pm on Monday evening looking toward Saturday’s Grand Opening and the last few races showcased several of harness racing’s top performers.   A few of the season’s fastest freshman pacing colts used tonight as a tightner for next Saturday’s $534,500 Governor’s Cup stake. A pair of Ron Burke trainees hit the wire together with Somestarsomewhere hanging on by a short nose over JK Endofanera in 1:51.4 with a wicked 26- final quarter after setting all the pace for Yannick Gingras. Burke Racing owns this son of Somebeachsomewhere, who set the freshman track record of 1:49.2 at The Red Mile this fall and won his Breeders Crown elim in a world record 1:49.4 at Pocono, with Weaver Bruscemi, Yanek & Carr.     The seventh race, three year old pacing fillies prepping for the Nadia Lobell, pitted this year’s top sophomore I Luv The Nitelife against last’s season division leader Somewherovrarainbow, who was making her first start out of the Joe Holloway barn. They went around the oval in that order through 27.2 / 55.4 / 1:23.3 fractions and flew home in 26.3 for a time of 1:50.1 with “Nitelife” a length and a half winner. Tim Tetrick was behind the filly, as he has been in all of her starts and she looked as sharp as she has at any point this season. Chris Ryder conditions the Rocknroll Hanover filly for Richard and Joanne Young.   The most exciting news of the fall season is that top three year old pacing colt Captaintreacherous is slated to face older horses in the $500,000 TVG FFA Final on November 30, a feat that hasn’t been attempted in decades. The “Captain” used tonight’s qualifier to hone to a razor’s edge with a 1:49.3 waltz around the racetrack. Tetrick guided him through even fractions with a 27- kicker on the end.   Captaintreacherous has also held his form remarkably over the long and taxing summer and was turned out beautifully for tonight’s race by trainer Tony Alagna and his team. All that remains is for the connections, ownership group Captaintreacherous Racing headed by Myron Bell, and Tony to deem him fit for the race and we’ll get to see the match-up that we’d like.   The last race saw Pet Rock getting some work in toward that same TVG Final goal, where he will certainly be a main contender. Dave Miller put him right on the lead through soft numbers then sprinted home in 26.1 to win in 1:50.4. Trainer Virgil Morgan has Frank Bellino’s Rocknroll Hanover stud dead sharp for the last start of his career next Saturday before he heads off to Midland Farms in Ohio to embark on his new career.   Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment General Manager and CEO Jason Settlemoir observed, “Having the two preview nights to allow the servers and food prep the opportunity to get familiar with their jobs in the new space has been invaluable. Thanks to the horsemen for supporting it with their participation and to all of our employees for their hard work and dedication as we prepare for Saturday’s Grand Opening.”   Check The Meadowlands website for more information on tonight and Saturday’s races.   by Nick Salvi for the Meadowlands

The growth, generosity and well wishes continue to rise as horsemen and women throughout the harness racing community and outside the Standardbred industry are coming forth with donations towards the Anthony Coletta Fund. Coletta, who was critically injured in a driving accident at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Sunday, November 17 suffered head trauma and multiple fractions that required emergency surgery. He is figthing for his life at the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Reports said he is still breathing on his own, and tomorrow he will have multiple surgeries to work on fixing his broken pelvis, hip and elbow. Horsemen and women and racetracks across the United States are rallying to help raise funds for Coletta’s massive medical expenses. Thursday there will be a special days at tracks throughout the nation as many drivers, trainers and owners are donating and matching fees to help the cause. Joanne and Richard Young, owners of the world champion pacing filly, I Luv The Nitelife, said today they will donate 10% of their filly’s earnings from her next race, which is the $200,000 Nadia Lobell Pace at the Meadowlands on November 30. If she continues her winning ways that could amount to $9,000. Driver Yannick Gingras announced earlier this week that his is donating his driving fees to the Coletta Fund on Thursday and already more than ten owners and drivers have said they would match whatever he raises. Coletta’s best friend, trainer Anthony “Pork Chop” Defrancesco, III, has visited Coletta every day in the hospital and has set up a Facebook page, “Thoughts and Prayers for Anthony Coletta,” that already has more than 4,000 likes. Defrancesco has arranged for the purchase of 6,000 wrist bands that he will have ready by Monday. “I hope 6,000 will be enough.” Defrancesco said. He is also arranging with a local bank to set up a permanent fund for his friend. “Anyone wishing to make donations can write out a check to Anthony Coletta and send it to Defrancesco at 2551 South Mildred Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148. “ Defrancesco said. “To order wrist bands or to assist in our fundraising efforts please call 215-385-6732. “We have even heard from some groups outside our industry who are sponsoring trail rides to help raise money for the family too,” Defrancesco said. “This is really great.” Tracks and organizations where fund raising efforts are taking place include Dover Downs (DE), Freehold Raceway (NJ), Harrah's Philadelphia (PA), the Meadows (PA), Lebonon Raceway (OH), Pocono Downs (PA), Yonkers Raceway (NY), The SOA/NY, Crawford Farm and many indiviual grooms, trainers, drivers and owners too. By Steve Wolf for Harnesslink.com

East Rutherford, NJ - In preparation for what is likely to be the final starts of their season, Captaintreacherous and I Luv The Nitelife will qualify Thursday night at Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment. I Luv The Nitelife will make what is expected to be her final 2013 start the following Saturday, November 30th in The Nadia Lobell. Her owner Richard Young has nothing but praise for his superstar filly. "Nitelife has raced her heart out all year," said Young. "She raced in the Jugette, and we expected to have an elimination for The Breeders Crown, but instead had to qualify her. Then with one start in seven weeks she raced her heart out and got beat a neck at Balmoral. Maybe a qualifier would have helped, so we are getting her one prior to the Nadia Lobell." Captaintreacherous is gearing up for a new challenge. Captaintreacherous Racing spokesman Myron Bell talked about his star colt. "We are extremely pleased with the year he has had," said Bell. "There was no shame getting beat a nose in a tough trip in a world record mile. The other loss, the Captain was a bit sick. It happens. Our concern wasn't going undefeated, it was racing well and keeping his form and he has done that. Right now, he is 100-percent. If he comes out of this qualifier good, he has earned the right to race in the TVG Free For All Championship. It is an honor that Captaintreacherous is the three year old to take on this challenge and we feel very privileged to be competing in what will be a historic event for the sport of harness racing." The historic event that Bell is speaking of is that for the first time in a generation, the best three year old pacing colt will challenge the best Free For All Pacers in the world. "I don't think this has happened in over thirty years," Bell stated. "We are really behind this and I want to thank Tony Alagna and Tim Tetrick for doing such a great job with him all year and getting him to this race 100-percent fit and sound." The qualifiers will begin at 6:00 P.M. Thursday evening as part of a "Preview Night" for horsemen. In addition those horsemen attending will enjoy a complimentary dinner in "Pink," Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment tiered dining room. The Grand Opening will include a 13-race program Saturday Night, November 23rd featuring the Final Preliminary Legs of the TVG Free For All Championships. by Rachel Ryan for the Meadowlands  

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

For the eleventh time this year, Shebestingin made it look easy in getting to the winner’s circle and on Sunday at Dover Downs she set a track record in winning the $130,650 Matron Stakes for three-year-old pacing fillies in 1:49.1. Ms Caila J Fra (Andy Miller) left from the rail to take the early lead with Summertime Lea (Yannick Gringras) on their backs. After the opening quarter in :25.4 was when driver David Miller came charging on the outside with the 1/5 favorite, Shebestingin and they easily took command before the half mile pole in :53.4. Racing up the backstretch, Shebestingin held the field at bay as Jerseylicious (Corey Callahan) was caught on the outside since the start and could not catch up to the race leaders. Despite no pressure on the outside, Shebestingin still led the field past the three-quarters in 1:21.2 and then held the field at bay coming down the stretch and winning by three easy lengths. Ms Caila J Fra was second with UF Dragon’s Queen (Tim Tetrick) finished third. Sired by Bettor’s Delight, Shebestingin surpassed the prior track record of 1:49.2 that was set by Show Her The Money. She is trained by Joe Holloway and is co-owned by Val D’or Farms, Ted Gewertz and L 7 L Devisser. Shebestingin paid $2.40 to win. “She is very good,” Holloway said. “She was good last week. Hopefully she will mature and will round into form for next year. When my filly is on her game she is as good as anybody. She had a little problem with the starts, some issues with herself. “She was lightly raced last year,” Hollowed explained, “and she will get more mature as she goes along. We thought she was something special when we baby raced her last year. She has gone some good miles and then got hurt so we put her away for the year. She will race once more in the Nadia Lobell at the Meadowlands and that will be it for her for the year. We will race her next year as well.” By Steve Wolf for Harnesslink.com  

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

Robbie Siegelman does not make many trips to Dover Downs. In fact, when Cheyenne Miriam won the open handicap for fillies and mares there on Nov. 4, it was the first time Siegelman raced a horse at Dover Downs since 2008. And over the last 15 years, the New Jersey-based New Yorker has competed at Dover just 20 times. So when Cheyenne Miriam returns to Dover Downs for Sunday's eliminations for the Matron Stakes for 3-year-old filly pacers, Siegelman is hoping it's worth the trip. It was worth it in 2002, when Cheyenne Rei upset a field that included the favored entry of Art Major and McArdle to win the Matron Stakes for 3-year-old male pacers. "I don't race there often, but I've always gone there with a quality horse," Siegelman said. "We've always done well at Dover. I like going there." Cheyenne Miriam heads to her Matron elimination off her head victory over 8-year-old Monochromatic, who has earned nearly three-quarters of a million dollars lifetime, in her last start. Cheyenne Miriam has won 11 of 22 races this year, missing the board only twice, and earned $289,807. The Matron will be her first test in open stakes company; she won three times on the New York Sire Stakes circuit and finished second to Casie Coleman's Social Scene in the $225,000 final. "I think based on her consistency and how she seems to stay fresh, she deserves a chance to race in it," Siegelman said. "She showed it (Monday) night; she beat a tough aged mare first up. It was very impressive." Cheyenne Miriam was bred by G.R.J. Partners - Barry Rubenstein, Gordon Freeman and Jeff Rubinstein - and is raced by lessee The Cheyenne Gang, which includes G.R.J. Partners, Larry Altman and Eli Oxenhorn. She is a daughter of Bettor's Delight out of the mare Alibecca and her third dam is millionaire Nadia Lobell. Alibecca's half-sister Falconstor produced former Cheyenne Gang star Cheyenne Trish. Cheyenne Miriam was limited to two starts last season because of soreness. She finished fifth in her first start this year, then won six of her next seven races in conditioned classes. She has not missed the board in 12 starts since being sixth-placed-seventh after going off stride in a race at Yonkers in May. "We didn't know she was going to be a stakes horse because she didn't really race at (age) 2," Siegelman said. "We raced her twice, she came up real sore behind, so we shut her down. "I think her best asset is her consistency. I just hope we can keep it going. She's been amazingly consistent. (Driver) Simon Allard said those two (off-the-board finishes) were his fault. One time she hit a wheel; she was locked in and loaded. The other was the first start of the year, where she was locked in. She's legit, just a really nice filly." Cheyenne Miriam is the 3-1 second choice in her Matron elimination, with Andy Miller listed to drive. Somwherovrarainbow, who was the Dan Patch Award winner for best 2-year-old filly pacer in 2012, is the 2-1 favorite for trainer George Teague Jr. and driver Montrell Teague. World champion Shebestingin, driven by David Miller for trainer Joe Holloway, is the 2-5 morning line favorite in the second elimination. Regardless of what happens in the Matron, Siegelman is looking forward to seeing what Cheyenne Miriam can do in the future. "It looks like we're probably going to keep racing her," Siegelman said. "My guys are in the racing game. There was some talk about selling her, but hopefully we can just enjoy her. "Hopefully she stays healthy. To possibly have one of those aged mares to race, they're so hard to find; the tough, rugged aged mares. That's what I'm hoping for her." by Ken Weingartner for Harness Racing Communications  

I Luv The Nitelife heads into Saturday’s American National 3-year-old filly pace fresh off her stunning victory in the $500,000 Breeders Crown sophomore distaff pace on Oct. 19 at Pocono Downs. The venerable daughter of Rocknroll Hanover trounced her competition soundly in 1:50 by nearly four lengths. “She’s been at Odds On Acres since last Wednesday and she’s just jogged lightly all week,” said her trainer Chris Ryder. “She came out of her Breeders Crown win in really fine shape, and just seems to enjoy life.” Harnessed by Ryder for owners Richard and Joanne Young of Florida, I Luv The Nitelife has been driven by Tim Tetrick in all of her pari-mutuel starts this season. This familiar scenario follows closely on the heels of 2010 champion Put On A Show—who had these same connections and credentials. I Luv The Nitelife—with her Breeders Crown victory—erased her stablemate’s combined record earnings from her freshman and sophomore season($1,893,475), with her $1,907,867 totals. On Monday of this week, the Young’s cleverly challenged the connections of North America’s top male pacer, Captaintreacherous, to a match race on The Meadowlands’ opening night, on Nov. 23 at the East Rutherford, NJ one mile oval. All of the money from the race would go to charity,with the winning horse’s charity receiving 60% of the purse. “It’s a great idea the Young’s have come up with, and it’s for charity,” Ryder said. “It’s a great opportunity for both of these outstanding 3-year-olds, and a fantastic promotion for harness racing. It’s a win-win situation overall.” I Luv The Nitelife had a 31-day layoff and a pair of qualifiers between her double-heat Jugette victory at the Delaware County Fairgrounds in Ohio on Sept.18 and her Breeders Crown victory, and now has had 21 days since that last triumph at Pocono Downs. “She wasn’t eligible to anything at Lexington, and our main goal was to win the Jug and the Breeders Crown,” said Ryder. I Luv The Nitelife posted back-to-back miles of 1:51 and 1:51.2 in the Jugette, setting a world record of 3:42.2 for a combined two heats. “I wasn’t concerned about her racing the two heats; I was confident she could handle that,” Ryder noted. If she wins on Saturday night, I Luv The Nitelife has a chance to become just the fourth 3-year-old pacing filly in harness racing history to be honored with a Horse of the Year trophy, joining Rainbow Blue (2004), Bunny Lake (2001) and Fan Hanover (1981). A $60,000 yearling purchase by the Young’s at the 2011 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale, I Luv The Nitelife now has 12 consecutive victories to her credit this year, with one third place finish in 13 trips postward this season. Her lone loss came at The Meadowlands on June 1 in a $150,000 New Jersey Sire Stake. Since then, her career has been a dream-come-true for her connections. “She’s a great horse, and great horses do great things,” said trainer Chris Ryder after her Breeders Crown victory. “Yes, there was a longtime in between races, but we just couldn’t find any suitable ones for her, so we qualified her.” This year I Luv The Nitelife also won the $205,608 Simcoe Stakesat Mohawk in 1:50, the $350,000 Valley Forge at Pocono in a career best 1:48.4,the $125,000 Miss New Jersey final (in 1:49) and elimination (in 1:50.3), the $184,250 Mistletoe Shallee (in 1:50), the $300,000 Lynch elimination (in1:50.1) and final (in 1:50) at Pocono, and the $384,044 Fan Hanover elim (in1:50.4) and final (in 1:49.1) in early June. No slouch as a freshman, I Luv The Nitelife earned $689,530 from four wins, four seconds and one third in ten 2-year-old starts, and was named Canada’s top freshman pacing filly, honored with that nation’s prestigious O’Brien Award. She’s slated to start in the Nadia Lobell after her start in the American National. Ryder said the star distaff takes all the traveling and racing in stride. “She sleeps a lot and is just kind of a plain-jane filly,” he stressed. “She’s never any trouble; in fact, you’d never know she was in the barn.” I Luv The Nitelife is the second daughter out of the $67,482-winning Camluck mare Lisjune, an 11-race winner who took a mark of1:50.4 at age four. Her granddam is the Abercrombie mare Lisheen p,3,1:52.3 ($518,405), who also produced Lisjune’s half-sister, the worldchampion Lis Mara (by Cambest) p,4,1:47.3 ($2,141,661); Lisagain (by DragonAgain) p, 4, 1:49.1F ($635,218); Lis Deo (by The Panderosa) p,2,1:50.2($353,755); Mr Dennis (by Dragon Again) p,3,1:51.1 ($152,410); Odds On Santi (by Jate Lobell) p,4,1:54.2 ($56,049); and Lislea  (by Cam Fella) p,Q1:52.3($28,849), etc. by Kimberly Rinker for Balmoral Park  

We are talking today with Joe Holloway.  Joe is one harness racing's top trainers.  He has trained many of harness racing's best pacers, including Jennas Beach Boy who's 1:47.3 race record stood for nearly 20 years.  He has also trained two champion fillies,  She's A Great Lady in 1995 and Lady Macbeach in 2000,  They both went onto win divisional honors for pacing fillies.    He recently astonished the harness industry when Shebestingin paced a mile in a world record time of 147, shattering the record for her division by more than one full second.  The mile put the three-year-old filly in historic company as not only the fastest filly, but also within one-fifth of a second of joining Somebeachsomewhere, Holborn Hanover, and Warawee Needy as the fastest Standardbred ever in a race.  This has set up one of the great match-ups in harness racing with Shebestingin and I Luv The Nitelife going head and head in the Breeders Crown final this Saturday.  The harness world is anxiously awaiting this showdown between two of the biggest stars in our sport. This one-on-one interview was done by Harnesslink's Brian McEvoy.   HLINK:  Congratulations on your world record performance by Shebestingin in 1:47 at the Red Mile.  How did she come out of the race, and what have you done to prepare her for the showdown with I Luv The Nitelife in the Breeders Crown final?   JH:  She came out of the race just fine.  We just got to see how things pan out on Saturday.   HLINK:  Let's go back to last year. Shebestingin raced only 3 times last year.  She was shutdown after scratching in the Sweethear Pacet.  She came down with a stress fracture.  Tell us about the injury and her 2-year-old campaign.  Did you know you had something special?   JH:  David Miller drove her in her first few starts and thought very highly of her.  She did really good at Tioga.  We traveled with her to the Sweetheart and we scratched her.  It was the first time I had that injury.  She just needed stall rest to heal the injury.   HLINK:  You brought Shebestingin out early as a 3-year-old.  Was that because she was so inexperienced?   JH:  Yes  I raced her in the Weiss Series at Pocono, and that is why.  It's tough to bring them out later when other horses have more seasoning and horses go so fast now.  That was my intension.   HLINK:  Tell us about her 3-year-old campaign, the ups and downs?   JH: Well she does have that problem with the gate, which caused her to break in the Valley Forge.  I thought she was ready to race super that night, but she didn't go.  In the Empire Breeders she races very well, pacing in 1:49 at Tioga.  She raced really well in Lexington.  It's like any thing else.  When they race great all things are very good and when they don't thinks are not so good.   HLINK:  You have lost three times to I Luv The Nitelife this year, the Lynch, Valley Forge, and Mistletoe Shalee.  You had a classic stretch battle in the Lynch and she broke at the Valley Forge.  Give us some insights into those races.   JH:  In the Lynch, as it turned out, I Luv The Litelife had a bad post.  On the first turn Ms Cailia J Fra made a break.  We ended up getting away decently and had to race first over.   We got beat.  We raced well, but she did beat us their.  In the Mistletoe Shalee she raced a little flat that day.  You can't have any excuses.  The races are what they are.  She's beaten us two times and hopefully we can turn the tables this week-end.   HLINK:  She scratched of of the Jugette.  What happened and were you disappointed?   JH:  I wasn't  disappointed.  They had 10 horses in one race and i had the seven hole with two trailers.  It was a riduculous race to put her into, so I just didn't go.   HLINK:  Shebestingin has never been sharper in her last two races.  This  has been capped off by the amazing world record performance at the Red Mile.  Did you ever think she could pace in 1:47, and when you looked up at the time were you amazed?   JH:  Surprised, yes because of the 1:47.  I expected her to pace in 1:48.  I really thought she had a shot to pace in 1:48.  I was surprised she went in 1:47.  I know she is very high speed horse.  That she was able to get a world record was not a surprise to me.  The 1:47 was a surprise to me.   HLINK:  What happened when she broke at the start and they had a recall?   JH:  She does have that bad habit.  When she paces fast she is very good gaited.  When she going slow she prefers to canter.  She was just coming or she shied away from something.  They were just turned around and they started again.   HLINK:  This has happened now two times.  Is this a problem with the starting gate or what is the problem?   JH:  It just when they are going slow.  She would prefer to take off.  When they are pacing she is just fine.  She does not run when she's going.   HLINK:  You have trained some amazing horses.  You have had two divisional filly champions in She's A Great Lady and Lady Macbeach.   Is Shebestingin your best filly ever?   JH: It's like picking among your kids.  They are all special for different reasons.  She is a great filly.  It is so tough to compare her to She's A Great Lady because she was so dominate.  We haven't been dominate.  We haven't beat Nitelife.  We have had a great year, but she has beaten us those times.  Tough to say if she is the best horse.  She is a very fast filly and maybe she develops even more next year.  I may change my mind next year.   HLINK:  You have the inside post with Shebestingin drawing the 5 post and I Luv The Nitelife drawing the 7 post.  Pocono Downs is a speed favoring track.  Will you look to be on or near the front?  What is going to be your strategy?    JH:  That is David Miller's job!!  I don't have to figure that out for him.  He has to do something to earn his money.  He will figure that out.   HLINK:  You have had both Brian Sears and David Miller drive Shebestingin.  What are your thoughts about having David drive in the Breeders Crown?   JH:  David drove her in the baby races.  He has always liked and believed in the filly.  I was just a little angry after the Valley Forge race.  That was my fault.  Brian did a good job driving the horse.  He has always been a friend of mine.  I know David believes in the filly, and that goes a long way.   HLINK:  What are your plans for Shebestingin for the rest of the year, next year, and in the future?   JH: Hopefully we will go in the Matron and the Nadia Lobell.  We will shut her down and bring her back next year    by Brian McEvoy for Harnesslink.com  

Golden Receiver stamped himself the one to beat in next week's $110,500 Presidential final with another gate-to-wire score in the second leg of the harness racing series Saturday night at the Meadowlands Racetrack.

'She's just not the same horse.' With that, harness racing trainer Jimmy Takter said he plans to scratch the brilliant See You At Peelers from her scheduled start Monday night (September 19) in a division of Yonkers Raceway's $234,832 New York Sire Stakes Peekskill Pace for 3-year-old fillies.

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