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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – Fire Start Hanover, Commanding Officer and Summa Cum Laude all remained perfect through two harness racing legs of the Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-olds at The Meadowlands Friday night. Fire Start Hanover had an easy time of it in the first race filly pace, sailing down the road in a lifetime-best 1:52.1 to win by 1¾ lengths with driver Victor Kirby calling the shots. The daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Fit To Frame, who is trained by Nifty Norman, paid $3.20 to win as the 3-5 favorite and ran her overall winning streak to three. Commanding Officer completed an all-chalk Early Daily Double for trainer Tony Alagna and driver Scott Zeron. The 2-5 favorite cleared to the lead before the three-eighths on the way to a 1½-length romp in 1:52.1 in a division for colt and gelding pacers. The son of Captaintreacherous-Turnoffthelights returned $2.80 to win. Summa Cum Laude stayed unbeaten in taking another division for male pacers in race nine. Driven by Simon Allard for trainer Ron Burke, Summa Cum Laude took over the lead after Bettor Not Talk went off stride while racing on the point on the way to the half. The winner, a son of Somebeachsomewhere-Western Graduate, scored by a length in 1:52.2 and returned $4.00 as the even-money post-time choice. A LITTLE MORE: Allard was the top driver of the night. Currently fifth in the standings at Pocono Downs, Allard won three races on the night, two of them for Burke. … Kirby guided a pair of winner’s circle visitors for Norman. … Mark MacDonald and Zeron also steered two to victory lane. … Big M TV personality Jessica Otten correctly selected the $267.40 Early 50-cent Pick-4. She also gave out best bet Mazzarati, who returned $9.80 to win. … Despite the 4-5 favorite scoring easily, the 13th race Pentafecta failed to yield a winning ticket. The next Late 10-cent Pentafecta will start out with a carryover of $14,331. … All-source wagering totaled $1,878,489. … Racing resumes Saturday at 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – We’ve seen this before. And before the year is out, it’s almost a certainty we’ll see it again. Allywag Hanover, a close-up third in The Meadowlands Pace two months ago, ended a personal three-race losing streak with authority Saturday night at The Meadowlands, exploding home in the final eighth of a mile to take a high-end conditioned harness racing pace in 1:49.2. “We’ve seen him get airborne before,” said trainer Brett Pelling. “He gets going faster than most horses go.” Heading into the ninth race, it was difficult to know which Allywag Hanover would show up, given his disappointing fourth-place finish in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Championship as the 3-5 favorite at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Sept. 6. “When he came back from Canada [after finishing sixth in the North America Cup on Aug. 29], he coughed a little on the Monday before the Sire Stakes,” said Pelling. “He had some clear mucus, and he had the same thing Friday, which was very acceptable. But at Philadelphia, he came up sick, so that was pretty devastating.” After taking antibiotics and getting some rest, Allywag Hanover was ready to go Saturday after taking 12 days off. Rodeo Rock, a veteran hard-hitter with a lifetime bankroll of over $723,000, grabbed the lead at the half after brushing from an early three-hole and the 6-5 second choice had things his own way after getting clear of the field through a third fraction of :27.1 saw him reach three-quarters in 1:22.3. At the head of the stretch, Rodeo Rock was sailing along on a 2½-length advantage while Allywag Hanover was a non-threatening fourth racing with cover with plenty to do. But then he did it. At the eighth pole, Rodeo Rock still looked like the winner, but Allywag Hanover, much like he did on July 4 when he kicked home in :25.3 to win in 1:48, found another gear to nail Rodeo Rock at the finish by a neck after pacing a final quarter in :26. Like Clockwork was third. “It looked to me like he moved twice,” said Pelling. “[Driver Tim] Tetrick said the same thing. He was going, then it looked like he spotted [Rodeo Rock] and started going again.” In upping his lifetime stats to eight wins from 19 career starts, Allywag Hanover returned $3.60 to his backers as the 4-5 public choice. His earnings now stand at $234,163 for owners Allywag Stable. Pelling revealed what the plan is for his prized 3-year-old colt, who is a product of Captaintreacherous-Anderosa Hanover. “He’s going to Hoosier Park Friday for the Jenna’s Beach Boy Stakes,” said Pelling. “And he has other races, too. He’s Breeders Crown eligible. Beyond that, I’m pretty sure he’ll race beyond this year, but it hasn’t been spoken about yet.” A LITTLE MORE: Todd McCarthy continued to make a big impression at The Meadowlands, driving three winners on the program. Andy McCarthy’s 27-year-old little brother has now won nine races over the last three Big M programs. … All-source handle on the 13-race card was $2,448,703, capping a second straight weekend where wagering exceeded the $5-million mark. … Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – Marcus Melander shined brightest at The Meadowlands Friday night, as his trainees scored three times among the 10 harness racing divisions of the first leg of the Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gait. Moonstone S was the first winner of the night for Melander in the third race colts and geldings trot. The son of Muscle Hill-Moonlight Kronos, who finished second in the Aug. 8 Peter Haughton Memorial, pulled the pocket after the half and sailed off to an easy 2½-length score as the 6-5 favorite with Tim Tetrick driving. He recorded his first win in five lifetime starts after stopping the clock in 1:55. Melander and Brian Sears teamed up to take the fourth race filly trot with Ineffable, a daughter of Cantab Hall-Jolene Jolene, who won for the second time in five lifetime tries. The 6-5 public choice, who was third in the Aug. 8 Jim Doherty Memorial, emerged from the pocket to win by a half-length in 1:56.2. In race seven, Melander completed his three-bagger with a second score in a colts and geldings trot as his Sonofamistery, with Sears driving, rolled to an easy 1¾-length win in 1:56.1 after racing parked out for the final half mile. The son of Muscle Hill-Mistery Woman, who broke in each of his first two seasonal starts, paid $3.00 after being sent off as the heavy 1-2 favorite. He’s now won twice from four outings. BIG ACTION: Betting was vigorous in the two multi-leg wagers that offered carryovers. The Late 20-cent Pick-5, which had $21,811 in the hat to start, attracted $123,810 in “new money” for a total pool of $145,621. Those who had tickets with the combination of 5-8-6-6-5 cashed in for $414.64. The Late 20-cent Pick-4 sported a total pool of $172,828 after $134,438 was added to the $38,390 carryover. Tickets reading 8-6-6-5 returned $344.30. … All-source wagering totaled $2,618,071. A LITTLE MORE: Lindysmusclemania stayed perfect in three starts after taking a Kindergarten division for trotting colts and geldings. The Ake Svanstedt-trained son of Muscle Hill-Possessed By Lindy hit the wire in a lifetime-best 1:54.4, 3½ lengths to the good with Andy Miller driving the 6-5 favorite. … Speaking of favorites, they scored in nine straight races beginning in race two. By night’s end, 10 post-time choices had visited the winner’s circle from 13 races. … Live racing resumes Saturday at 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - McCarthy, McCarthy, McCarthy, McCarthy! No, not Andy of Hambletonian fame, but little brother Todd, who stole the show at The Meadowlands Saturday night. The recent Australian invader won four times on the 13-race card to record his first harness racing victories at the mile oval. There figure to be many more to come. McCarthy, 27, arrived from Down Under at the end of August and has made an immediate impact racing in the States, winning 11 times from 87 starts entering action Saturday. "Australia was good to me. It's been great for years," said McCarthy. "I was the top driver at Menangle Racetrack in Sydney for the last five years. The timing was tricky [to come to the States] the way things are in the world right now, but it was a good time to come over and give it a go. The racing here is definitely faster and a little more aggressive, but so far it's been great and I'm really enjoying it." So did those who bet him Saturday night. McCarthy got the ball rolling in the third race, finishing first in a dead heat. Guiding A Major Omen, he managed to catch Griffon Hanover at the wire to record his first career Big M win in 1:52.2 in a low-end conditioned pace, paying $7.20 to win. Both horses went off at odds of 6-1. Somebodyitreasure and McCarthy hooked up to destroy their foes in a non-winners of two pace by 5¾ lengths in 1:49.4 as the 6-5 favorite in race four before Flyingevenbettor N gave McCarthy his third win of the night in the sixth race non-winners of four pace in 1:51.2 as the 1-2 public choice. Completing McCarthy's grand slam was 7-1 chance The Bettormack N, who got the better of 3-5 favorite Ocean Colony nearing the finish of race seven. The time for the mile in the mid-range conditioned pace was 1:50. "I've had a good night," the understated McCarthy said. "With a lot of help from some good horses and some good trainers. I've been a lot busier than I thought I'd have been. I think for anyone in the harness racing industry, you look at America, The Meadowlands is the pinnacle. To crack one tonight and then to get a few more after that, it was pretty awesome." Big brother Andy has been in his corner. "Andy's been a key factor in throwing a lot of work my way," said Todd. "The fact that he's been away [racing in Canada] has been a help. He's told some of the trainers, 'I'm away, you can throw my brother down on something'." McCarthy said he plans to race at Philadelphia, Pocono Downs and The Meadowlands in the coming months. "I've enjoyed every track I've raced at," said McCarthy. It shows. BOMBS AWAY! Driver Pat Berry, aka "The Blueberry Bomber", was up to his old tricks again, guiding three winners on the card, none close to being the post-time public choice. Berry scored with Always The Sun ($15.20 to win) in the first race and Imageofarocker ($12.00) in the fifth before saving his best for last, winning with 33-1 shot Harambe Deo ($68.40) in the 10th. On March 7, the last night of racing before the coronavirus shutdown, Berry swept the late double that paid $2,700.40 with horses who went off at 47-1 and 27-1. A LITTLE MORE: With a carryover of $37,159 serving as the catalyst, Early 20-cent Pick-5 players got to shoot for a total pool of $188,387. Those correctly selecting five winners cashed in for $271.46. ... With Harambe Deo providing the big upset, neither the Late 50-cent Pick-4 nor the Late 20-cent Pick-5 were hit. When racing resumes, the Late Pick-4 will have a carryover of $38,390 while the Late Pick-5 will start out with $21,811 in the hat. ... All-source wagering on the 13-race card totaled $2,744,326. ... The Big M's next live racing program is Friday. Post time is 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – Over the past two years, Highalator has impressed time and again at The Meadowlands, and Saturday night at the mile oval, he brought his ‘A’ game once again in defeating a talented harness racing field in the featured $18,500 high-end conditioned pace. Unlike his Big M score on June 6 at odds of 42-1 from post 10 from off the pace, driver Ricky Still had the 6-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere-Higher And Higher on the go early from post 8, following 6-5 favorite Angers Bayama around the first turn. Angers Bayama – seeking his fourth straight win – led at the quarter in :26.2, but Highalator surged to the top shortly thereafter, securing the lead at the three-eighths before being permitted to rate the half in :54.4. Donttellmeagain was now on the move as Tim Tetrick asked that one for pace, and the pair made up ground racing on the rim down the backside and around the far turn, and were just off the leader’s flank at the head of the stretch. But just as he did while sweeping the 2019 Golden Receiver Series at The Big M, Highalator found more. Through the stretch, Highalator had to contend with a pesky Donttellmeagain to his outside and Angers Bayama to his inside. But Highalator was up to the task, fending off that two-pronged attack to score by a safe head after pacing his final quarter in :26.4. Angers Bayama finished second with Donttellmeagain third. The Jenny Bier trainee, who paid $11.00 to win as the third choice, stopped the clock in 1:49 and now has 36 wins from 80 lifetime starts for owners Jenny Bier, Joann Dombeck and Midsize Construction Inc. His earnings are now just shy of $600,000. A LITTLE MORE: Hambletonian champion Ramona Hill qualified Saturday morning, winning from off the pace in 1:53.1. … The program marked the start of The Big M’s new 10-cent Pentafectas. The fifth race combination of 9-3-4-10-1 was good for a payoff of $689.34, while the 13th race paid $132.07 for a ticket bearing the combination 3-8-5-2-4. The second and third choices finished in the top two in both races. … Wagering on the 13-race program totaled $2,594,313. … Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

Freehold, NJ --- As a man from Freehold once said, "it's been a long time coming, but now it's here". Idle since March 7, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and their typical summer break, Freehold Raceway is back in action this Friday (August 28), with a 10-race program. The harness racing card is highlighted by the first division of the New Jersey Sire Stakes- Standardbred Development Fund for 3-year-old filly trotters. The likely favorite in the field of eight is Tricky Sister, for trainer Andrew Harris and driver Pat Berry. She's been keeping good company this year, most recently finishing third in the Zweig at Vernon Downs, ahead of Hambletonian Oaks winner Sorella, and behind Ramona Hill and Hypnotic AM. Last year, she won the NJSS-SDF Final for 2-year-old trotting fillies over this track, and followed it up with a score in the New Jersey Futurity. She'll leave from post position eight on Saturday. That race will go as the seventh race, with a scheduled post time of 2:30 PM EDT. In addition, the card also features the Preferred Handicap trot, scheduled as the eighth race. A pair of Yonkers Raceway invaders headline the field: Melady's Monet and Stormy Kromer. The former is coming off a win in the Preferred at Yonkers, where he trotted a mile in a season's best 1:53.3. He's got post seven for Hermann Heitmann and George Brennan. The latter won four in a row earlier in the year before fading after a wide trip last out. Daniel Dube drives from post position eight, for trainer Paul Stafford. First post time on Friday at Freehold is 12:30 PM EDT.     Publicity Freehold Raceway

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Southwind Tyrion continued his impressive winning ways Friday night at The Meadowlands, upping his lifetime record to three wins in as many starts after taking the $60,000 Garden State - sponsored by the Standardbred Owners and Breeders of New Jersey - for 2-year-old colts and geldings on the trot in 1:54.3 over a track labeled 'good'. The popular 1-9 favorite swung wide off the far turn and sprinted past his foes through the stretch to record a safe 1-length win for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. Cricket Fashion was second with Red Redemption third. Two weeks ago, Southwind Tyrion took the New Jersey Sire Stakes Final in a lifetime-best 1:54. He now has earnings of $122,500 for owners S R F Stable, Ake Svanstedt, Knutsson Trotting and Brittany Farms.   In the first of two Garden State divisions for 2-year-old fillies on the trot, Lindys Dollywood, the 4-1 third choice in the wagering, came from off the pace to nail Beautiful Game at the wire. The George Ducharme-trained, Scott Zeron-driven daughter of Muscle Hill-Lindys Crazy won for the first time in three career starts after stopping the clock in 1:54. The Svanstedt-trained Presto made it two wins in three lifetime outings in the second division, hitting the wire in a lifetime-best 1:56.2. Yannick Gingras guided the product of Trixton-Susie's Magic to an easy score as the 1-5 favorite. Dune Hill ran her winning streak to four in the Continentalvictory for 3-year-old filly trotters, holding off Ms Savannah Belle by a nose in 1:53.4 in winning for the sixth time in 16 starts for trainer Ron Burke with Gingras in the bike. The daughter of Muscle Hill-Quite Possible paid $9.20 as the third choice in the betting. Hillexotic, a Muscle Hill-Exotic Destination colt trained and driven by Trond Smedshammer held off the late-charging 3-5 favorite Play Trix On Me in the Muscle Hill for 3-year-old colts and geldings on the trot. The winner, who was sent to the gate as the fourth choice in the betting at odds of 6-1, won for the first time in four career starts, hitting the wire in 1:53. A LITTLE MORE: Gingras recorded three wins on the program while Dexter Dunn had one. Heading into the last day of the meeting, Dunn leads Gingras 83-82 in the driver standings. ... All-source wagering totaled $2,377,908. ... Racing resumes Saturday, Hambletonian Day, at a special early post time of noon. ... There will be a 60-minute Hambletonian show telecast on tape delay on the CBS Sports Network at 6 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – It was a Meadowlands Pace harness racing rematch, where third-place finisher Allywag Hanover was looking for some revenge against Pace champion Tall Dark Stranger. But Captain Kirk did not get the memo that said one of the two favorites would emerge victorious. A son of Captaintreacherous-Aria Hanover, Captain Kirk went directly to the top from post 8 before going directly down the road in the $84,800 Tompkins Geers for 3-year-old colts and geldings on the pace at The Meadowlands Saturday night. Driver Joe Bongiorno was aggressive with the Tony Alagna trainee, and while he never had a moment’s peace, Captain Kirk recorded a determined three-quarter-length win nonetheless in a lifetime-best 1:48.3. Allywag Hanover (the 3-2 second choice) was second, Sandbetweenmytoes third and Tall Dark Stranger fourth. Sent off as the 16-1 third choice in the betting, Captain Kirk led at the quarter in :26.4 while taking bitter pressure from 131-1 chance Rogerthat Bluechip. The duo continued to trade blows to the half as Rogerthat Bluechip had a nose up in :54.2. Rogerthat Bluechip was done soon thereafter, and it was now Allywag Hanover’s turn to turn up the heat on the outside, but Captain Kirk kept on rolling, hitting three-quarters in 1:22.1, before extending his edge to two lengths for the sprint home. It was no problem from there. Captain Kirk ($35.60 to win), who finished seventh in The Pace, still had enough gas in the tank to pace his final quarter in :26.2 to get his second lifetime win in 13 starts. Tall Dark Stranger, the 3-5 favorite, had things go anything but smoothly from post 10, and did not fire after going a second-over trip. In the $53,100 Tompkins Geers split for 3-year-old fillies on the pace, Rocknificent sat in the pocket behind dueling leaders Peaky Sneaky and Alexis’s Beach before swinging three-wide on the far turn. The Scott Zeron-driven, Linda Toscano-trained daughter of Captaintreacherous-Rocklamation, who returned $4.80 as the 7-5 public choice, had to contend with a fast-closing Lady Lou along the rail, and just got up to record a head win in a lifetime-best 1:49.1. Peaky Sneaky was third. The fourth leg of the $40,000 Miss Versatility for open mare trotters went to 2-5 favorite Plunge Blue Chip (Muscle Mass-Dunk The Donato), who needed every inch of the stretch while racing extremely wide to record a nose win over Kenziesky Hanover in 1:52.2 for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. The 5-year-old lifted her lifetime earnings to $1.267 million. A LITTLE MORE: Three of the Big M’s most popular puzzles took big action, as the 20-cent Pick-5 ($106,654), 50-cent Early Pick-4 ($95,893) and 50-cent Late Pick-4 ($97,996) accounted for a total of $300,543 worth of wagers. … Betting blew past the $3-million mark for a second straight card and ninth time this year, as $3,242,000 was pushed through the windows. … Alagna finished the night with three winners, including American History, who took the Open for pacers in 1:47.1, just a fifth of a second off the national season’s record. … Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. … Saturday’s (August 8) huge Hambletonian Day card gets underway at noon.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - They might have taken different paths to get there, but Altar and Southwind Tyrion both found their way to the harness racing winner's circle in a pair of $160,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes finals at The Meadowlands Friday night. Altar, a daughter of Muscle Hill-Swan Hot Mama, led at every call in taking the 2-year-old filly trot for driver Dave Miller and trainer Per Engblom. After heading to the gate as the 4-5 public choice, Miller urged Altar to the top and never surrendered the lead in a thoroughly dominant performance, hitting the wire 2¾ lengths in front of Material Girl in a lifetime-best equaling 1:54.4. Presto finished third. "I actually wanted to get out of there and get on Yannick's [Gingras, driving Presto] back," said Miller. "I thought that would be better. She finished real strong." After hitting the half in a rated :58, Altar accelerated and opened up 2½ on the field at three-quarters and had no anxious moments from there. "Not particularly," said Miller when asked if he intentionally sped clear of the field. "She was so relaxed, I did chirp to her on the far turn, and she did everything on her own from there."   Altar returned $3.60 to her backers, and now has two wins in three lifetime starts, good for earnings of $92,500 for owners Diamond Creek Racing. In the 2-year-old colt and gelding trot, the Ake Svanstedt trained and driven Southwind Tyrion stayed perfect in two lifetime outings after scoring in a lifetime-best 1:54 coming from off the pace. The son of Muscle Hill-Taylor Jean was pushed wide into the first turn and took back to mid-pack before emerging from the five-hole approaching the half, flushing cover from Mon Amour, who was looking for a three-race Sire Stakes sweep. Miller and Heartbreak Hill were sailing along on the lead at three-quarters but brought little from there. After tipping off his cover, Southwind Tyrion exploded home in :27 to record a 3-length win over Locatelli, who did well from post 10 as the 2-1 favorite. Spy Booth grabbed the show dough. Southwind Tyrion, who returned $16.40 as the fifth choice in the wagering, now has earnings of $92,500 for owners S R F Stable and Ake Svanstedt Inc. STAYING PERFECT: A pair of $96,000 NJSS Finals for 2-year-old pacers were contested before the betting card, with both winners completing three-race sweeps after taking both of their respective preliminary legs. First up was Anna Jeans (Great Vintage-Early Go Hanover), who won the filly event in 2:05.2 for driver Jason Thompson and trainer John Urbanski. Fika Time (a Sunfire Blue Chip-Raiders Favorite gelding) stopped the clock in a lifetime-best 1:55.4 in the division for colts and geldings for Tim Tetrick and Chase Vandervort. There were also a pair of New Jersey Breeders Maturity events for 4-year-old pacers, the first of which - for horses and geldings - went to Hurrikane Emperor in 1:50. The son of Hurrikane Kingcole-Hurrikane Schmumma, the fastest horse in the sport this year by virtue of his 1:47 clocking in the Graduate on July 11, was piloted by Mark MacDonald for John McDermott. A Beach Cowgirl (Somebeachsomewhere-Limestone Cowgirl) established her lifetime best of 1:50 in holding off JK American Beauty by a half-length for Dexter Dunn and Annie Stoebe in the division for mares. A LITTLE MORE: 2016 Hambletonian champion Marion Marauder won the overnight feature - a high-end conditioned trot - in a lifetime-best 1:50.2. ... Miller led all drivers with four wins on the card. ... Betting surpassed the $2.5-million mark for the 29th time in 35 Big M programs this year, as a total of $2,759,620 was pushed through the windows, including $100,394 of action in the 50-cent Late Pick-4. ... Racing resumes Saturday at 7:15 p.m.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Gusting winds and drenching rains from Tropical Storm Fay could not extinguish the harness racing fire that is super mare Atlanta at The Meadowlands Friday night. Facing an easier task than in her first two starts of the season not having to face arch-rival Manchego, the Ron Burke-trained Atlanta had an easy time of it in the $40,000 second leg of the Miss Versatility for open mare trotters over a sloppy track. Driver Yannick Gingras kept Atlanta off the early action, sitting fifth past the quarter and half. He then got the 5-year-old daughter of Chapter Seven-Hemi Blue Chip in gear after leader Kenziesky Hanover. With Atlanta gaining quickly, Plunge Blue Chip swerved out of the three-hole, which provided a live tow for the eventual winner. Plunge Blue Chip was just off the leader's flank at three-quarters, and out of the turn, Gingras swung Atlanta three-wide for the drive and easily coasted by Plunge Blue Chip to record a 3¼-length score in 1:51.2. Plunge Blue Chip, the 5-1 second choice, completed the $5.20 exacta. Felicityshagwell S was third. "I wasn't concerned about the sloppy track because I knew Yannick would adjust to the conditions," said Burke. "The truth is, she prefers to get the kind of trip she got tonight. I wanted to follow Plunge Blue Chip, and as long as we could outkick her, we'd be alright. I am going to give Atlanta next week off. I don't want to over-race her. She's more thoroughbred than standardbred. She'll go next in two weeks in the Spirit of Massachusetts at Plainridge." Atlanta has now won 22 of 42 lifetime outings, good for earnings of $2,026,089 for owners Crawford Farms Racing, Brad Grant and Howard Taylor. NJSS ROUNDUP: The New Jersey Sire Stakes for 2-year-olds kicked off Friday with its opening leg, and in the filly pace, the John Urbanski-trained and driven Anna Jeans, a product of Great Vintage-Early Go Hanover, won in a "walkover" (a one-horse race) in 2:15.2 over the sloppy surface in a race conducted before the betting card. In another early non-bettor, Fika Time took the colt and gelding pace for driver Tim Tetrick and trainer Chase Vandervort. The gelded son of Sunfire Blue Chip-Raiders Favorite stopped the clock in 2:01.1. In the first of three colt and gelding trots on the betting card, Southwind Tyrion, a son of Muscle Hill-Taylor Jean, came from off the pace to score as the 4-5 favorite for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt in 1:56.1. The Dexter Dunn-driven, Per Engblom-trained Mon Amour, a colt by Muscle Hill-Mind Meld, went wire-to-wire in 1:56.4 as the 3-1 second choice in division two before Beyond The Hill took advantage of a late break by leader Sonofamistery to score in the final division in 1:59.1. Driven by Dave Miller and trained by Jim Campbell, the son of Muscle Hill-Beyond Blue paid off at odds of 10-1. The filly trotters had two divisions, and taking the first was Hot As Hill, who won from off the pace for driver Joe Bongiorno and Burke. The daughter of Muscle Hill-Smarty Pants went off at odds of 17-1 and went the mile in 1:58.3. The second division gave Svanstedt a trainer-driver NJSS double as another longshot, 39-1 chance Presto, upset the apple cart in 1:57 from off the pace. The winner is a daughter of Trixton-Susie's Magic. A LITTLE MORE: Melissa Arbia, who guided Take It Back Terry to victory in the first race GSY Series pace for amateur drivers, combined with Bongiorno to complete a rare husband-wife driving double on the card. The last to do it were Ake and Sarah Svanstedt. ... Despite the bad weather and multiple 2-year-old races, wagering on the 13-race card totaled $2,373,660. ... Racing resumes Saturday at 7:15 p.m. The Meadowlands Pace Elimination and a pair of $250,000 Graduate Finals highlight the program.   By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 22 -- Magical Acres will host harness racing qualifiers on Tuesday, June 23rd, post time 9:00 A.M. Click the link here for a free printable program. Watch the live stream of the qualifiers at this link here Courtney Stafford

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 21, 2020 -- Watch Gaitway qualifiers live and view free harness racing program. To watch Gaitway Farm Live Stream click here  For the Gaitway Farm Program click here Courtney Stafford

Former Aussie harness racing team Shane and Lauren Tritton have kicked off a new chapter with the best possible start to their USA move. The couple has a team of 18 in work, and took their first runner to the famed Meadowlands circuit, near New York City, early today Australian time. My Ruebe Star (Falcon Seelster-Zenola Star (New York Motoring) didn't disappoint, scoring a comfortable win for reinsman Jordan Stratton. A relieved Shane Tritton described the win as "pretty surreal" but the couple was thrilled to get "the monkey off their back" in the best possible way. "I'm not sure if its relief or what it is, but it was just unbelievable to get the win," he said. "I think the greater relief was actually to get one to the races - we have been under a lot of pressure being away from home and away from our friends. It was a big move and it is a relief to finally be underway." Shane said he was pleased his dad, trainer Peter who moved to the US 20 years ago, was able to be trackside for the win. "Dad's been showing us the ropes, so it was fantastic to have him there. I think he was relieved as well, because I think he was worried we might blame him if things didn't work out as we hoped!" Shane laughed. "It's just so exciting. We've been talking to family and friends back home and you just have to pinch yourself that it's happened." My Ruebe Star was a winner of 10 races in Australia and was among a dozen horses that relocated to the Northern Hemisphere with Team Tritton. "We're so proud of her. She had to do it a bit tough early and we were wondering if we'd had to use her up a bit much. But Jordan said she felt fantastic right from the start, and first up, we just couldn't have asked for any more. "We always liked her back home but she was coming up against he best mares in NSW towards the end. We always thought she just needed to mature a bit and she would take that next step." The couple will follow up with another ex-pat Aussie, again at the Meadowlands, on Saturday night (Sunday morning Australian time) in eight-times Australian winner Gods Spirit (Tintin in America - Cathar). "Gods Spirit is in a similar type of race but we're definitely not getting ahead of ourselves. As long as he runs up to his ability, we'll be happy." Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

TEAM Tritton formally start an exciting new chapter of their career in the US on Saturday morning (NZ time). Husband and wife, Shane and Lauren Tritton, moved to the US a couple of months back and have their first two starters at the famed Meadowlands track in New Jersey. Kiwi-bred pair My Ruebe Star and Gods Spirit fly the stable flag. There will be some familiar faces against them with Dexter Dunn and Aussie Andy McCarthy driving at the meeting. “We’ve got 18 in work, 12 we brought across from Australia and six we’ve picked-up over here,” Tritton said. “It’s great to be having our first runners, but we are taking is nice and steadily over here and think we’ll get better with time. “There are so many different viruses over here, you can’t go anywhere near as hard at the horses in training as we did back home, especially in their first few months here. “We’ve had quite a few qualify and they all get in quite well here under the stakemoney handicapping system.” Tritton expects solid showings from Gods Spirit and My Ruebe Star. “Gods Spirit is probably the best up-and-comer we have here. He qualified well with a second to the star here, Wiggle It Jiggleit,” Tritton said. “Of the horses we’ve got, Gods Spirit is the up-and-comer, but the proven Group 1 horses from back home, headed by Flaming Flutter and Yayas Hot Spot, are working well and should do a good job when they start racing soon. “We’re also looking forward to racing Letsspendanitetogetha. He’s come up really well.” Lauren Tritton has been driving at the qualifiers and won two of them last weekend, but will watch from the sidelines for now. “Lauren’s all set to drive when the time is right, but wants to let the horses have a few runs and watch some of the racing before getting amongst it herself. It might be a few weeks I think,” Shane said. Jordan Stratton, a long-time stable driver for Shane’s father, Peter, will drive Gods Spirit and My Ruebe Star this week. “We’re training from the farm Dad trained at, about a hour north of New York City, and Jordan’s had a long association with Dad. He’s especially good as knowing how to drive these former Down Under horses without gassing them too much in their early runs,” Shane said. Team Tritton will race mainly at the Meadowlands and Yonkers, when it re-opens for racing post-COVID on June 22. “It’s been a bit of a blessing the suspension of racing because of COVID for us. It’s given us extra time to get settled-in and find our way. Now we’re keen to get into it,” Shane said.   Adam Hamilton

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands will open the main track to harness racing training this Saturday, June 13 after the qualifiers which begin at 9:00AM.   The number of horses coming in to train will be limited to 70.   They may not arrive on the grounds before 11:00AM and will be directed to assigned stalls.   The NJ COVID-19 protocol is of course enforced and your cooperation is appreciated.   Call the Racing Office after 3PM on Friday to sign up.   Nick Salvi

The New Jersey Sires Stakes (NJSS) is announcing a date change for the New Jersey Breeders Maturity Pace. The date for this stake is being changed from the previously scheduled dates of elimination races on Saturday, June 20 and the final on Saturday, June 27 to eliminations on Friday, July 24 and the harness racing final on Friday, July 31 at The Meadowlands.    The NJ Breeders Maturity is a new stake funded and serviced by the New Jersey Sires Stakes with separate divisions for 4-year-old horses and mares on both the pace and trot. The trotting races are scheduled for September 11 & 18.   The purse for all Maturity elimination races is $12,500 - $15,000 based on number of entrants. The finals purses will be determined by the number of entries at $40,000 if 8-10 entries, $32,000 if 5-7 entries and $24,000 if less than 5 entries.   Questions should be directed to NJSS:  Lynn Mathews at 609-292-8830     Nick Salvi  

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