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Tioga Downs ran three divisions of the New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) for harness racing 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Sunday (June 16). Hickfromfrenchlick (Mark MacDonald) won the first division ($38,900). Hickfromfrenchlick ($3.60) led to a first quarter in :27.2. Magic Joe Lindy (Scott Zeron) took over as they went by the stands for the first time leading to the half in :56.0. Hickfromfrenchlick, who is owned by trainer Ray Schnittker with Nolamaura Racing and Thomas Spatorico, made his move before hitting three quarters in 1:21.1. As they reached the stretch second place finisher, Respect Our Flag (Tyler Buter) and third place finisher, Major Blake (Jason Bartlett) gave chase but Hickfromfrenchlick was too strong and won in 1:51.3. It equaled his career best time. Hickfromfrenchlick is a 3-year-old colt by So Surreal. It was his third win this season. He now has seven career victories. Buddy Hill (Jason Bartlett) was an easy winner in the the second division ($38,200). Live Lucky (Wally Hennessey) led the group to a first quarter of :26.3. Buddy Hill would then take over leading to the half in :54.4 and three-quarters in 1:22.3. Buddy Hill, who is owned by Tom Hill and trained by Marcus Melander, was in total control as they reached the stretch. Artie's Ideal (Marcus Miller) came charging late but settled for second as Buddy Hill won in a lifetime best of 1:52.0. Live Lucky finished third. Buddy Hill is a 3-year-old colt by Roll With Joe. It was his first win as a sophomore. He now has two career victories. Major March (Jason Bartlett) captures the third division ($38,900). Major March ($15.40) led to the first quarter in :27.0. Big favorite, American History (Tyler Buter) took over with one lap to go. He led to the half in :54.3 and three-quarters in 1:23.0. Major March, who is owned by Bay Pond Racing Stable and trained by Linda Toscano, followed in the pocket. As they reached the stretch he would fly out of the pocket and go right by to win in 1:52.3. Rollwithpapajoe (Wally Hennessey) came up to finish second with American History holding on for third. Major March is a 3-year-old colt by Art Major. It was his third trip to the winner's circle this season. He now has four career wins. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (June 21) witha 10 race card starting at 6:15p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com. John Horne for Tioga Downs        

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. - The New York Sire Stakes County Fair Series is set to begin Thursday, June 20, at the Chenango County Fair in Afton. The County Fair Harness Racing Finals, scheduled for September 5 at Monticello Raceway, will be contested for $10,000 purses in each of the eight divisions. The full schedule of race dates can be viewed here. Horsemen should note that declarations close for Afton on Saturday, June 15, at 10 a.m. Entries for all NYSS County Fair Events will now be made through the NY County Fair Entry Hotline at 518-388-0964 or online through the USTA. If you are entering online, be sure to add the fair tracks to your account in advance. Entries for ALL OVERNIGHT events, including at Afton, should be made by calling the fair race secretary directly. This number is included with information on each fair in the NYSS 2019 County Fair Schedule Book. Horsemen should also note that the draw schedule for the season will follow a new four-day box, as opposed to the historical three-day box. Careful attention should be paid to draw dates. The New York Sire Stakes County Fair Series consists of 20 non-pari-mutuel harness racing events open to eligible 2- and 3-year-old New York-bred Standardbreds. The events provide young horses with the opportunity to earn as they learn, while bringing the community together for a series of races. "I am excited to kick off this year's New York Sire Stakes County Fair Season at Afton next week and see the debut of many of our young New York-bred horses. We look forward to this time of year each summer and are so proud to partner with the individual county fairs to bring these events to their towns," said M. Kelly Young, executive director, Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund. "We love having the opportunity to introduce harness racing to new audiences at the fairs and hopefully spark an interest in the sport for years to come." Select County Fair Series race dates will also include Racing Under Saddle (RUS) exhibitions. RUS is a hybrid between harness and Thoroughbred racing where riders race atop Standardbreds at a trot. RUS NY was formed in 2014 to increase interest in the sport and showcase the versatility of the Standardbred breed. About the Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund:  The Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund is a public benefit corporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the state. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes races, Excelsior/State Fair Series races, and County Fair Races. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- The New York Sire Stakes for the harness racing 3-year-old colt and gelding trotters will take center stage at Buffalo Raceway on Wednesday night (June 12) with two divisions each worth $58,000 (approx.) being up for grabs. Post time for the 13-race card is 5 p.m.   The first race finds fourth of the six entrants all finishing in the money this year in Sire Stakes competition but none able to reach the winner's circle. The other division has two participants with a victory including the red-hot Mr Vicktor who arrives with a pair of scores in the NYSS and a second place finish the $215,200 Empire Breeders Crown race.   The boys will be chasing the Buffalo Raceway track records of 1:56.1 established by Gural Hanover for the geldings in 2014 and the colt mark of 1:56.2 set in 2016 by Purpose Blue Chip.   The first leg has One White Knight (Crazed-Psychotherapist) as the morning line favorite at 2-1 as he'll score from the two post for Jim Morrill Jr. With three consecutive second place finishes including one on June 3 in the NYSS at Monticello Raceway, Our White Knight did take third in the Night Of Champions in the 2-year-old finale last season. Trained by Edwin Gannon Jr., he is the top money earner entered this week with a lifetime bankroll of $160,514.   Livinonthedash (Muscle Mass-Sunshine Glide) drew the six post and will get the services of Tyler Buter. Sitting out as a 2-year-old old, Livinonthedash has four victories in seven tries in his rookie season and is the 3-1 second choice.   The remainder of the first division includes Horns For Three (Kevin Cummings), Powerscourt (Michael McGivern), Lights Come On (Billy Davis Jr.) and Chip Chip Conway (Jimmy Taggart Jr),   All eyes will be on the 8-5 favorite Mr Vicktor in the second division, scheduled as the fifth race. Drawing the rail with Buter in the bike, the front-stepping Mr Vicktor (RC Royalty-Hawaiian Vicky) has four wins in five tries this season including two victories on the NYSS circuit. His last start was a wire-to-wire job in 1:57.1 at Monticello. The Jennifer Lappe-trainee has already amassed $113,632 in earnings this year.   Travel Winner hits the Buffalo Raceway track fresh off a NYSS win in 1:58.2 at Monticello Raceway on June 3. Travis Henry gets the driving assignment for trainer R. Nifty Norman. Travel Winner (Credit Winner-Travelin Supergirl) starts from the two post and is the second choice at 3-1.   Rounding out the field will be Big Money Honey (Mike Simons), Quiksilvr Bluechip (Davis Jr.), Captain Krupnik (Cummings), Kredit Karma (Morrill Jr.) and JNR Express (Drew Monti).   Besides Sire Stakes action, there will be two $15,000 Excelsior Series A races and a pair of $6,600 Excelsior B Series events.   There's a $1,744 carryover in the Pick-5 which begins in the second race.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, results, entries, upcoming promotions and simulcast schedule, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

Tioga Downs played host to two divisions of the New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) for harness racing 3-year-old pacing fillies on Monday (June 10). DD Delicious (Jim Morrill Jr) came flying late to capture the first division with a stake of $57,600. So Awesome (Tim Tetrick) was the big favorite and went to the front and led the group to a first quarter of 28.1. She controlled the pace as they hit the half in :57.1. JK American Beauty (Scott Zeron) would make the first move. She came first-over from third and started to pressure So Awesome as they headed for the last turn . So Awesome maintained a short lead as they hit three-quarters in 1:25.0. The two fillies remained side by side all around the final turn. DD Delicious ($13.40), who is owned by Fiddler's Creek Stables and trained by Travis Alexander, followed in the pocket the whole trip. In mid-stretch she found an opening on the inside and turned on the after burners to slip by and pick up the win in 1:54.1. So Awesome had to settle for second with the late charging Hurrikane Norakane (David Miller) getting third. DD Delicious is a 3-year-old filly by Art Major. It was her third win in five starts this season. She did not race as a freshman. Zero Tolerance (David Miller) cruises to easy win in NYSS second division ($56,500). Brooklyn Lilacs (Joe Bongiorno) set the pace and carved out all the early fractions (:27.3, :56.2, 1:24.0). Zero Tolerance ($2.10), who is trained by Joe Holloway for owners Val D'Or Farms and Theodore Gewertz, patiently followed in second. She took over around the final turn. As she hit the stretch, the filly found another gear and won by over 10 lengths in 1:53.2. My Lady Dude (Scott Zeron) came up to finish second. Brooklyn Lilacs had to settle for third. Zero Tolerance is a 3-year-old filly by Heston Blue Chip. It was her third win as a sophomore. She now owns 10 career victories. Zero Tolerance Scot Zeron drove three winners on the day. He got his wins with Haydens Little Man ($4.40), American Sombrero ($6.50), and Chase You ($3.80). Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (June 14). Post time is 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com John Horne for Tioga Downs              

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -Participants in the New York Sire Stakes County Fair Series will experience several changes this year, including new procedures for entering horses. These are outlined in the NYSS County Fair Book which was mailed to participants last week and is available online at www.nysirestakes.com. Entries for NYSS County Fair Events will now be made through a single NY County Fair Entry Hotline at 518-388-0964 or online through the USTA. Horsemen planning to enter online should be sure to add the fair tracks to their account in advance. There are two exceptions for the entry hotline. Entries for Goshen racing on July 4 and Erie County Fair/Buffalo racing on July 10 will be taken online or by the tracks directly: Goshen: 845-294-5333; Erie County/Buffalo Raceway: 716-649-1280 x6235 Entries for ALL OVERNIGHT events at the fairs should be made by calling the fair race secretary directly. These numbers are included with information on each fair in the NYSS 2019 County Fair Schedule Book. This new entry system will allow all NYSS County Fair division post positions to be done by USTA's electronic draw system. Additionally, horsemen should note that all fair events will be drawn with a 4-Day Box (excluding Sundays). Participants are reminded to be sure to pay attention to the draw schedule, which can be found online here. In regards to the conditions, rules for awarding points in the event of a cancellation were also updated for 2019. If a fair event is canceled, each horse on the grounds for the uncontested event at the time of declaring off will be awarded 10 points. If the entire card is canceled, all horses must be on the grounds by post time of the first race. Previously, points were prorated. Money and starts will continue to be awarded as they have been. Horsemen should make sure to check in with the race secretary and the NYSS County Fair Inspector to ensure your horse is recorded in attendance. For more information, see County Fair Condition #25 on Page 28 of the County Fair Schedule Book. "These changes were made with the goal of providing better service to our participants and to streamline the entry process for our County Fair Series," said M. Kelly Young, executive director of the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. "We hope to see you at the fairs this summer for another exciting season with the opportunity to introduce harness racing to new audiences." Any questions can be directed to Fund at 518-388-0178 or by emailing info@nysirestakes.com. About the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund: The Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund is a public benefit corporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the state. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes Program. Additionally, the Fund provides assistance to county agriculture societies and contributes to the statewide 4-H program and to the Harry M. Zweig Fund for Equine Research. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations

Tioga Downs welcomes two divisions of the New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) for harness racing 3-year-old pacing fillies on Monday (June 10). So Awesome (Tim Tetrick) is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the first division. The 3-year-old filly by So Surreal is owned by William Hartt and trained by Scott Di Domenico. In her four starts as a sophomore she has two seconds and a third. She has four career victories. DD Delicious (Matt Kakaley) is the second choice at 5-2. The 3-year-old filly by Art Major is trained by Travis Alexander for the Fiddler Creek Stables. Not raced as a freshman she has two wins in four starts this season. In the second Division Zero Tolerance (David Miller) is the 2-1 morning line choice. She has already captured two legs of the NYSS this season with wins at Yonkers Raceway and Vernon Downs. The 3-year-filly by Heston Blue Chip is owned by Val D'Or Farms and trained by Joe Halloway. She is after career win number 10. Brooklyn Lilacs (Joe Bongiorno) is the second morning line choice at 7-2. The sophomore filly by Rock N Roll Heaven is owned by Crawford Farms Racing and trained by Jennifer Bongiorno. She captured a leg of the NYSS at Yonkers Raceway. The 14 race card is set to get underway at 1 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com John Horne for Tioga Downs

On Monday afternoon June 3, Mr. Victor and Cavill Hanover highlight the New York Sire Stakes for 3 Year Old Trotting Colts. The entire nine race card is dedicated to Sire Stakes, three divisions of Sire Stakes will each race for a purse of $38,200, three heats of Excelsior A's vying for a purse of $15,000 and three heats of Excelsior B, racing for $6,600. The first race is the first heat of the regular Sire Stakes with 5 horse's going to post, the fastest of the lot is Winnerup, the son of Credit Winner is trained and driven by Trond Smedshammer for patron Purple Haze Stable. He earned his lifetime mark of 1:53.1 at Vernon in overnight company. Horns For Three will start from the rail, a winner his last start in 1:55.4, Jason Bartlett will drive the son of Credit Winner for trainer Jeff Cullipher. Mr Vicktor (Tyler Buter) has drawn the rail in his dash (Race 6) and has been installed the morning line favorite, Mr Vicktor, has a new trainer this start as Jennifer Lappe has assumed training the RC Royalty colt for new owners R. Santagata, J. Lappe, Diamond Pride and Joe Lee. A model of consistency, in 6 lifetime starts he has a tally of 4 wins, 1 second and 1 third place finish. His last start in Vernon Downs he finished second to last year's 2 Year Old Trotting Colt of the year Gimpanzee in the Empire Breeders Classic Final. In his prior start he won a NYSS event at Vernon Downs in 1:55.1, as a 2 year old he won an Excelsior stakes at Monticello Raceway. Local favorite Chip Chip Conway (PP4), the son of Conway Hall is trained by Gary Messenger with regular driver Jim Taggart Jr. In the sulky. Travel Winner (PP4) the son of Credit Winner has 3 wins in 9 starts this season for trainer R. Nifty Norman, last start out he finished 3rd in the Empire Breeders Classic, Tyler Buter will drive. Cavill Hanover is the handicappers 2nd choice drive, the son of Muscle Mass is trained by Ake Svanstedt, in 3 starts this season he was second in the Dexter Cup Elims and finished 4th in the final, and 4th in the Empire Breeders Classic. Post time for the 9 race Sire Stakes laden card is 12:50pm. By: Shawn Wiles

Batavia, NY --- Batavia Downs has announced that they have retained the services of Heather Wilder and Peter Kleinhans as their on-air personalities for the broadcast of the $1.8 million New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) Night of Champions which will be held at the track on Saturday (Sept. 14). Wilder will be doing pre and post-race interviews and Kleinhans will provide analysis and handicapping insight. Heather Wilder grew up with solid roots in harness racing being the daughter of Dan and Ruth Altmeyer and later marrying Meadows leading driver Mike Wilder. Her knowledge of every aspect of the sport is extensive as is her relationships with all its participants. Besides being actively involved in racing everyday, Wilder currently handles talent management for the Delaware County Fair during the live TV broadcast of the Little Brown Jug. She has also been a regular part of the United States Harness Writers Association's (USHWA) Dan Patch Awards Banquet both as an onstage host and Facebook live interviewer and producer for many years. While she worked as public relations and marketing director for the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA) she became a pioneer of reporting on racing on Facebook Live and coordinated the promotion of countless on-track events. In recognition of her fine work she was the recipient of USHWA's Lew Barasch Memorial Breakthrough Award for industry career achievements in 2013. Wilder's lifelong involvement with the sport and its players will make for interesting trackside and winner's circle interviews throughout the night. Peter Kleinhans started going to Roosevelt Raceway as a teenager and his passion for the sport grew from there. Eventually he started training and driving his own stable and reached the top of the game. Peter Kleinhans            --photo Meadowlands Kleinhans was training a stable of 20 horses led by Enough Talk who was the first trotter in the world to break the 1:50 barrier when he won by over eight lengths in 1:49.3 at Colonial Downs in 2008. Enough Talk also won the Breeders Crown in 2010 and received the Dan Patch older trotter of the year trophy from USHWA in each of those two seasons. Although he still competes as an amateur driver, Kleinhans has expanded his role in the sport to announcer, analyst and host and has recently filled in at the Meadowlands in those capacities. His knowledge and expertise of the sport and articulate delivery of same will provide an informative and entertaining look at the night's races for all who are watching. "We are very excited to add such accomplished and professional talents to our production of the Night of Champions" said Todd Haight, Director/General Manager of Live Racing at Batavia Downs. "Heather and Peter have performed at the highest levels of the sport both on and off the track and will bring a unique perspective to the show for our fans." The Batavia Downs live racing meet kicks off on Wednesday (July 24) and runs through Saturday (Dec. 14). For more information on the upcoming racing season log on to www.bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing.   By Tim Bojarski  for Batavia Downs  

YONKERS, NY, Friday, May 3, 2019 - New York Sire Stakes season gets underway Tuesday night (May 7th), with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $163,499 Joe Goldstein Trot for harness racing 3-year-old fillies. With 17 lasses in to go, the event offers two six-horse fields--purses $54,833 each-and a five-horse event at $1,000 less. Defending statebred champion Winndevie makes her seasonal debut in the final event, leaving from post position No. 5 in the seventh race. Trond Smedshammer trains and drives the daughter of Credit Winner for Purple Haze Stables. As a frosh, Winndevie offered up six wins and a second in seven starts ($227,878), wrapped by a 1:58 mark taken here in September's $225,000 final of the sire stakes. Quincy Blue Chip (Jim Morrill Jr., post 3) socked away $181,962 at 2, doing so with four wins, three seconds and a third in eight tries. After ending 2018 with a second-place finish in the finale of the statebreds, the Blue Chip Bloodstock homebred daughter of Chapter Seven began this season with a (Pocono) win and a second in two tries. Amal Hall (Andy Miller, post 6), herself a six-figure lass ($124,102) last season, also used Westchester for her life-best (1:58.4) effort. Julie Miller trains this season-debuting Credit Winner miss for her husband the chauffeur, GTY Stable and Dumain Haven Farm. Tuesday night's first-event quintet (second race) finds Hanna Dreamgirl (Brian Sears, post 3) and Stella Jane (Jason Bartlett, post 4) alongside one another, each coming off solid first seasons. The former, a Chapter Seven miss owned by Ken Jacobs and trained by George Ducharme, won twice in 15 '18 tries ($115,204). The latter, a Crawford Farms homebred daughter of Crazed trained by John Butenschoen, was 3-for-14 a season ago, the highlight a win in the $236,060 final of the Kindergarten at the Meadowlands (life-best 1:54.4). She tries it this season sans the trotting hopples. The evening's second grouping (third race) is led by Conway Kellyanne (Charlie Norris, post 3), having earned $127,996 in her freshman (freshwoman?) season. After her statebred obligations, the Conway Hall miss finished second in a pair of Red Mile open stakes tries. Total purses for the 2019 New York-bred program are estimated at $14 million. For more information, please visit www.nysirestakes.com. Frank Drucker

The New York Sire Stakes has announced a change of date to a previously scheduled race day for the upcoming season. The fourth leg for 2-Year-old Filly Pacers, originally scheduled for Friday, July 26 at Tioga Downs, has been moved to Monday, July 22, 2019. This change applies to both New York Sire Stakes and Excelsior events. Participants are urged to update their records. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations O: 518.426.4099 | M: 845.913.6394 jason@bakerpublicrelations.com www.bakerpublicrelations.com  

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. - The Agriculture & New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund has published its Stallion Directory for this year's New York Sire Stakes racing program. The Directory includes the pedigrees, career statistics, earnings and stud fees of 42 registered, Standardbred stallions. Eight horses are new to the directory this year. The full directory and a list of eligible stallions are available online at www.nysirstakes.com. The new stallions in 2019 are: Boston Red Rocks Celebrity Maserati Crazy Wow In The Arsenal Met's Hall Perfect Road Trip Sign Of Lightning Whitesands Macgyver Eligible stallions are those stallions that are (1) owned by a resident of New York State and standing the entire stud season in New York State, or (2) owned by a resident of a state other than New York but standing the entire stud season in New York State and leased by a resident of New York State for a term of not less than one year, or (3) owned jointly by a resident or residents of a state other than New York State together with a resident or residents of New York State and standing the entire stud season in New York State with the same leasing requirements as (2). "It's hard to imagine a more outstanding showing by New York-bred horses last year and we expect this amazing group of stallions to give New York Sire Stakes participants every chance to build on that success," said M. Kelly Young, executive director, Agriculture & New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. "New York breeders know they have the backing of a strong state-bred program when marketing their yearlings, and those with resident mares have the potential to earn Breeders Award earnings at the finish of the season." Hard copies of the Stallion Directory are available through the Fund upon request. Those interested are asked to contact the office at 518-388-0178 or info@nysirestakes.com. The racing schedule and updated conditions for the 2019 New York Sire Stakes racing season are available at www.nysirestakes.com. The NYSS "Night of Champions" will be held Saturday, Sept. 14, at Batavia Downs About the Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund: The Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund is a public benefit corporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the state. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes races, Excelsior/State Fair Series races, and County Fair Races. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations O: 518.426.4099 | M: 845.913.6394 jason@bakerpublicrelations.com www.bakerpublicrelations.com

SCHECNECTADY, N.Y. - The harness racing schedule and updated conditions for the 2019 New York Sire Stakes racing season were approved Monday at a meeting of the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund Board of Trustees. New York Sire Stakes and Excelsior Series racing will kick off Tuesday, May 7, at Yonkers featuring the 3-year-old filly trotters. The sophomore colt trotters will start on Friday, May 10, at Vernon Downs in preparation for the Empire Breeders Classic Eliminations and Finals for trotters there on May 12 and 27. As previously announced, the NYSS "Night of Champions" will be held Saturday, Sept. 14, at Batavia Downs. The NYSS Consolations will be at Vernon Downs the following day. The Excelsior Finals are scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 21, at Saratoga Casino Hotel. Dates for the County Fair Racing Series will be announced in the coming weeks. An update to the County Fair Conditions for 2019 is the change from a three-day to a four-day box. Declarations will now be required by 10 a.m. four days prior to the race. In addition, the County Fair conditions were changed so that in the event of a race cancellation, all horses on the grounds will receive a flat 10 points. The full updated conditions for the Excelsior Series and County Fair Series in 2019 can be found at the New York Sire Stakes website, along with the conditions for NYSS #60 for foals of 2018. The Board approved more than $13.3 million in added purse money for the season, which with starting fees will mean total estimated purses of $14 million. This includes the $1.8 million for the "Night of Champions," The Board also approved $1 million in Breeders Awards to be handed out in 2019 to the owners of resident broodmares. A total of $150,000 has also been made available for next year's grant program. An application will be available in early 2019 encouraging certified 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations to apply for consideration. Organizations are asked to review the Fund's Grants Policy to determine their eligibility before applying. "The New York Sire Stakes featured more than its share of extraordinary talent this past year as we saw historic performances and new records set," said M. Kelly Young, executive director, Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund. "It promises to be another exciting season as champions return, and the offspring of past champions hit the track for the first time." Race replays, point totals, and news updates will be available throughout the season at nysirestakes.com and the official NYSS Facebook and Twitter accounts. About the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund: The Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund is a public benefit corporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the state. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes Program. Additionally, the Fund provides assistance to county agriculture societies and contributes to the statewide 4-H program and to the Harry M. Zweig Fund for Equine Research. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. - The New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) hosted its Annual Awards Banquet December 2 at Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel, honoring the top horses, trainers, drivers, owners and breeders of the 2018 harness racing season. Awards were given to the 2 and 3-year old champions across the three racings series: the New York Sire Stakes, the Excelsior Series and the County Fair Series. This season's NYSS "Night of Champions" was held at the Yonkers Raceway on September 22. Taking home a combined $1.8 million in purses were champions Winndevie (Credit Winner-Vida De Vie), Gimpanzee (Chapter Seven-Steamy Windows), Money Shot Hanover (Art Major-Marinade Hanover), Reigning Deo (Rock N Roll Heaven-Little Miss K), Plunge Blue Chip (Muscle Mass-Dunk The Donato), Helpisontheway (Chapter Seven-Porque), Wisdom Tree (Betterthancheddar-Wisdom), and Rockapelo (Rock N Roll Heaven-Capelo Rose). The title of Leading Breeder went to Winbak Farm, Linda Toscano took home Leading Trainer and Jim Morrill Jr. was honored with Leading Driver of 2018. The 2019 Night of Champions' date was unveiled during the awards banquet. New York's richest night of racing will be held on Saturday, September 14, 2019 at Batavia Downs. The evening honored the NYSS Excelsior Champions, who took home $55,000 each at Saratoga Casino Hotel on September 23. The 2018 champions are Lifetime Credit (Credit Winner-Mariah De Vie), Labadee As (Conway Hall-Smith Hall), Heavens Challenge (Rock N Roll Heaven-Challenge Accepted), Cal (American Ideal-Hula's Z Tam), Michando (Muscle Mass-Haul'n Fanny), Nows The Moment (Credit Winner-Glide By), Special Kay Deo (American Ideal-Little Miss K), and Thor De Vie (So Surreal-Pebblebeach De Vie). The evening also celebrated the NYSS County Fair Champions, crowned at Monticello Raceway on September 6, following two months of racing at 20 county fairs across New York State. Each final carried a purse of $10,000, collected by Golden Gypsy (Ulay Boko-Uffra Girl), Hereyago (Muscle Mass-End of Innocence), Lily Hammer (So Surreal-Jens Underdog), Cal (Roll With Joe-Crystal De Vie), Good Luck Ginny (Lucky Chucky-Classical Ginny), Royal Bahama (RC Royalty - Becca J), Heaven's Diva (Rock N Roll Heaven-Village Bolero), and Super Roll (Roll With Joe-Calista). Joseph Chinado Sr. took home Leading Trainer, and his son, Joseph Chindano Jr. took home the title of Leading Driver of 2018. "It's always a special evening to be able to reflect on the past season and relive so many of the impressive moments from the New York Sire Stakes," said M. Kelly Young, executive director, Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. "We want to thank Batavia Downs for their incredible hospitality and we look forward to being back here next fall for the 2019 Night of Champions." The USTA District 8 Champions recognized at the banquet included Winndevie, Thunder (Conway Hall-Cr Oh Suzanna), Brooklyn Lilacs (Rock N Roll Heaven-Sombodythatiustono), Hickfromfrenchlick (So Surreal-My Girl's A Star), Atlanta (Chapter Seven-Hemi Blue Chip), Perlucky (Lucky Chucky-Paper Girl), Alexis Faith (American Ideal-Cannae Cammie), and Trump Nation (Betterthancheddar-Late Flyin N). Atlanta took home the coveted title of Horse of the Year, while Toscano was named as Trainer of the Year, Morrill Jr. as Pari-Mutuel Driver of the Year and Chindano Jr. as County Fair Driver of The Year. The Bruce Hamilton Memorial Medal was awarded to longtime NYSS supporter and Standardbred owner, Kenneth Jacobs. The medal is presented annually by Harness Horse Breeders of New York State in recognition of outstanding contributions to harness horse racing and the improvement of breeding Standardbred horses in New York. About the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund: The Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund (the Fund) is a public benefit corporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the state. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes races, Excelsior/State Fair Series races, and County Fair Races. Jason Politi | Baker Public Relations

A reminder that today (Nov. 21) is the deadline to RSVP for the New York Sire Stakes & US Trotting Association District 8 (Upstate New York) Annual Awards Banquet. Please RSVP via phone or email to Judy Spadaro at 518-694-5002 or jspadaro@caphill.com. The banquet will be held Sunday, Dec. 2 at Batavia Downs Gaming and Hotel. The cocktail reception will begin at 6:30 p.m., hosted by USTA District 8 Tracks. The awards banquet will follow immediately at 7:30 p.m. in the Grandstands Banquet Room. Tickets are $35. Payment should be made out and sent to: Agriculture & NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund C/O CHMS 230 Washington Avenue Extension, Suite 201 Albany, NY 12203 A special room rate of $99 has been arranged for all banquet attendees at the Hotel at Batavia Downs. Reservations can be made online by using Code NYSS2, or by calling 585-815-7000. Tell the desk you are making a reservation for the New York Sire Stakes banquet to receive the discounted rate. Thank you for your support and we look forward to seeing you at the banquet. From the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund  

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. - The New York Sire Stakes has announced annual Breeders Awards for the 2018 racing season, totaling $1,000,000. Payment packages will be mailed to the recipients over the coming days. The full list of awards can be found at the New York Sire Stakes website. The Breeders Awards program provides rewards for each level of New York Sire Stakes racing: Sire Stakes, Excelsior Series and County Fairs. The awards are residency based, rewarding breeders who keep their mares in New York State for at least 180 days during the year of conception, thereby contributing to the agricultural economy. The program is designed to stimulate New York State's agriculture sector and support New York farms. Top award winners in 2018, with key earners in parenthesis, include: Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc. - $165,587.44 (Plunge Blue Chip, Quincy Blue Chip), Winbak Farm - $87,405.15 (Courtly Choice, My Delight), Crawford Farms LLC - $58,525.64 (St Somewhere), Richard Balog - $44,833.48 (Helpisontheway), and Steve Jones - $43,541.87 (Hickfromfrenchlick). "Breeders are the foundation of the harness racing industry. We are proud to support the investment they make in maintaining exceptional broodmares right here in the Empire State when breeding to New York-registered stallions," said M. Kelly Young, executive director, Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. "As the demand and quality of New York horses continues to be strong, so will the economic and agricultural benefits that the Standardbred breeding and racing industries provide to the State of New York." This year, the equivalent of nearly 20 percent of a 2-year-old's earnings were returned to their breeder and more than 15 percent of a 3-year-old's earnings were returned to their breeder. This calculation is made each year depending on the pool of resident mares and the Sire Stakes program earnings of the resulting foals. In addition, 12 breeders earned more than $15,000 in Breeders Awards and 161 different entities will receive funds in 2018. The largest single Breeders Award earner this year was Helpisontheway (Chapter Seven), the 3-year-old trotting filly who won on the Night of Champions and earned $262,000 of her $485,000 in purses this season in the New York Sire Stakes program. Her performance alone returned $40,846.43 to breeder Richard Balog. The top Breeders Awards earners over their 2- and 3-year-old seasons combined were all fillies. Pacer Alexis Faith earned $54,230.79 for breeder Melvin Segal during her Sire Stakes career. Close behind were trotters Lucky Ava, who earned $52,803.99 over two years for breeder Little E LLC, and Plunge Blue Chip, who scored $49,300.05 for breeder Blue Chip Bloodstock. The New York Sire Stakes is the state's premier harness racing program for 2- and 3-year-old Standardbreds designed to stimulate the breeding, buying and racing of Standardbred horses in New York State. It is the nation's oldest harness racing program of its kind has served as a model for state-bred racing programs. About the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund: The Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund (the Fund) is a public benefitcorporation established in 1965 by the Laverne Law (Laws of New York, Chapter 567 of the Laws of 1965). The mission of the Fund is to promote agriculture through the breeding of Standardbred horses and the conduct of equine research within the State. To carry out its legislative mission, the Fund administers the New York Sire Stakes races, Excelsior/State Fair Series races, and County Fair Races. Additionally, the Fund provides assistance to county agriculture societies and contributes to the statewide 4-H program and to the Harry M. Zweig Fund for Equine Research. From the New York Sire Stakes

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, September 22, 2018-What did we learn Saturday (Sept. 22nd) during Yonkers Raceway's hosting of the Empire State's richest night of racing, the 29th New York Night of Champions? The $1.8 million event-eight, $225,000 sire stakes finals for freshmen and sophomores of both sexes and gaits-produced the expected, the unexpected and the 'it's a good thing no one was hurt." ACT I-The Expected Odds-on numbers Winndevie (Trond Smedshammer, $2.30), Gimpanzee (Brian Sears, $2.30), Plunge Blue Chip (Ake Svanstedt, $2.20), Wisdom Tree (Tim Tetrick, $2.50) and Helpisontheway (Jim Morrill Jr., $3.50) delivered their short parimutuel promises. Winndevie grinded by leader Quincy Blue Chip (Morrill Jr.), winning the Crawford Farms 2-Year-Old Filly Trot in 1:59. The latter led through intervals of :28.2, :59 and 1:27.4, but couldn't stall the first-over (from post position No. 2) foe, who prevailed by three-quarters of a length. Sensibility (Jordan Stratton) was third, with Amal Hall (Andy Miller) fourth. The daughter of Credit Winner, trained by her driver for owner Purple Haze Stables, is now 6-for-7 this season (3-for-3 here), with earnings of $227,858. The exacta paid $8.50, the triple returned $42.40 and the superfecta paid $108.50. Despite the win, Winndevie's 'date' did not seem impressed. "She wasn't at her best," Smedshammer said. "She's much better in the turns than she was tonight. Very bumpy. She won because no one else was there with her." Smedshammer said Winndevie was eligible to the Breeders Crown, but '"the way she was tonight, she's better off out in the field." Gimpanzee made it 7-for-7, winning the Agriculture and NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund 2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Trot in 1:56.3...a track record for his weight class. From post No. 5, he was third at the :28.2 quarter-mile, then made the lead before a :58.2 intermission. He then finished it off, getting a 1:27.1 three-quarters before that new track standard. Gimpanzee defeated Thunder (Jason Bartlett) by a half-length, his narrowest margin of victory this season. Our White Knight (Miller) was third-some dozen lengths behind-with Horns for Three (Jim Maroon Jr.) fourth. Gimpanzee, a son of Chapter Seven, saw the bankroll improve to $278,858 for co-owners Courant Inc. and S R F Stable. The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $3.40, the triple returned $11.40 and the superfecta paid $94. "Very professional, very mature," Sears said, "He knows what he has to do and goes out there and does it." "I knew all along he'd be a good one, from when he was training down," trainer Marcus Melander said. "Just a good horse to be around." All-age track record-holder Plunge Blue Chip had nary more than a qualifier for money in the Allerage Farm 3-Year-Old Filly Trot. From post No. 2-and one Svanstedt's five entrants in the race-she strolled early and lost 'em late (:29.2, :58.1, 1:26.3, 1:55.3). Plunge Blue Chip avenged last season's poor sire stakes finale effort, rolling home by seven lengths. Lima Novelty (Morrill Jr.) was the best of the rest, with Ciao Dolce (Miller) and Fury Road (Dan Dube) rounding out the gimmick finishers. Plunge Blue Chip, a Muscle Mass lass, has six wins, three seconds and thirds in 11 '18 tries ($485,101). She is co-owned by her driver/trainer Blue Chip Bloodstock, Little E LLC, Tomas Andersson and Rick Zeron Stables. Wisdom Tree was the best in her division coming in and coming out, easily winning the Cameo Hills Farm 3-Year-Old Filly Pace. From post No. 4, she worked around Newsday (Stratton), then had few issues (:27.4, :57.1, 1:25.2, 1:53.2). Wisdom Tree defeated Newsday by a length-and-a-half, with a first-up Alexis Faith (Morrill Jr.) third and Checkered Past (Bartlett) fourth. It was the 11th win in 14 seasonal starts ($387,351) for Wisdom Tree, a daughter of Betterthancheddar co-owned by Thomas Pollack & Jeff Cullipher and trained by Ed Hart. The exacta paid $9.10, the triple returned $22.40 and the superfecta paid $63.50. "I'm glad it's over," Hart said. "She's been racing on the front every start, probably because she's the best in there. We haven't put her in a lot of the open stakes since we wanted to stay in the sires, but she's eligible to one at Indiana (Hoosier), Northfield and the Matron (Dover), so she's not done yet." As for Helpisontheway, he was certainly helped by Yonkers Trot winner Six Pack being ineligible to the final (not enough prelim starts). So, after finished second to that in the Trot and a statebred event here, Helpisontheway had his way in the Morrisville College Equine Institute 3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Trot). Away fourth from post No. 4, he watched Winning Shadow (Mike Simons) lead (:28, 57, 1:25.3) before that one was put away by 50-1 Purpose Blue Chip (Dan Daley). Helpisontheway was towed behind that live longshot, widening to win by 2¼ lengths. An out-the-mile The Veteran (Stratton) was second, with Purpose Blue Chip, who outraced hid odds, and Winning Shadow were respectively third and fourth. Helpisontheway, a Chapter Seven colt trained by Linda Toscano for co-owners Camelot & Bay's Stable and Little E LLC, has seven wins and four seconds in his 13 '18 tries ($467,775). The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $15.40, the triple returned $188 and the superfecta paid $568. "Versatility," Toscano said. "He can leave and sit back the way he raced tonight. "Last season (1-for-8), he was immature. Some 2-year-olds just don't get it. The ability was there. He just needed to figure it out." ACT II-The Unexpected Reigning Deo (Morrill Jr., $42.20) closed from third-over, winning the Agriculture and NYS Horse Breeding Development Fund 2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Pace in 1:54.4. From post No. 4, he watched as Hickfromfrenchlick (Tetrick) led through intervals of :28, :57.1 and 1:25.1. The Sheppard winner slugged it out with Melodie's Magic (Tyler Buter), who surprisingly did not leave from the pole. Deepest of all arrived Reigning Deo, who whipped 'Melodie' by a length-and-a-half. Artie's Ideal (Marcus Miller) was a pocket third, with Hickfromfenchlick fading to fourth. For fifth choice Reigning Deo, a son of Rock N Roll Heaven co-owned by (breeder) Deo Volente Farms, (trainer) Brett Pelling and Brian Gordon, it was his third win in seven first-season starts ($193,712). The exacta paid $89, the triple returned $661 and the superfecta paid $2,355. "We wanted to go through the (sire stakes) program with him," Pelling said. "I mean, he's always carried himself well. We weren't planning to race him at Batavia (10 nights ago), but he was seventh in points, so we figured we needed to." They were correct, and rewarded. Moneyshot Hanover (Buter, $10) 'won the bob' over So Awesome (Tetrick) in the Winbak Farm 2-Year-Old Filly Pace. So Awesome was the first leader before giving up to St. Somewhere (George Brennan), That one laid down the law (:27.4, :56) before making an ugly break down the backside the second time. So Awesome then inherited the front of the fray, getting three-quarters in 1:24.4. She owned a length lead into the lane, but Moneyshot Hanover was able to tag her at the line. Third went to JK American Beauty (Sears), with Hurrikane Norakane (Dube) fourth. For third choice Moneyshot Hanover, a daughter of Art Major co-owned by (trainer) Mark Harder, Rick Phillips and Deena Frost, she now 3-for-8 ($203,408) this season. The exacta paid $25.20, the triple returned $151.50 and the superfecta paid $750. "She's two fingers to drive," Buter said. "She was bumpy around the last turn, but she dug in ACT III-The 'It's a Good Thing No One Was Hurt' The outset of the night's final statebred event, the Blue Chip Farms 3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Pace, was the sort of stuff one can't unsee. Pole-sitting 6-5 favorite Springsteen (Sears) was off the gate at the start, then hung a dead right, perhaps the victim of some equipment issue. Equipment or not, he impeded those who did not leave, including Heavenly Sound (Marohn Jr.), Rootin' Tootin' (Mark MacDonald) and Twin B Tuffenuff (Brennan). Getting the worst of it was Ghost Dance (Morrill Jr.), who ended up locking wheels with Springsteen as both found their way to the back fence. That left three horses in contention, with Rockapelo (Bartlett, $11.40) moving from third down the backside the second time and taking over the lead. From post No. 4, he won by 4½ lengths in 1:53.1. My Delight (Brent Holland) was second, with Ostro Hanover (Dube) third and Heavenly Sound fourth. Neither two- nor four-legged creature involved in the incident seemed any worse for wear. For third choice Rockapelo, a Rock N Roll Heaven gelding trained by Toscano for owner Enviro Stables, it was his third win in 13 seasonal starts ($203,5452) and pushed Bartlett over the $100 million career earnings plateau. The exacta paid $82.50, the triple returned $482 and the superfecta paid $1,943. "I didn't see what happened, but I heard yelling and I know when you the inside and you go right, it's not a good thing," Bartlett said. Saturday night's $44,000 Open Handicap Pace and Trot were won by Great Vintage (MacDonald, $45.80) in 1:52.2, and Yes Mickey (Bartlett, $5.60) in 1:54.2. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

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