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It's an exciting time of the year for harness racing fans at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. We're less than a month from our 50th Anniversary celebration week, which will include some amazing promotions and culminate in Super Stakes Saturday on August 22. Meanwhile this past week of racing action was contested under the hottest temperatures of the season and featured blistering times, wild finishes, and plenty of upsets. Let's take a look back at this crazy week by handing out the Weekly Awards.   PACER OF THE WEEK: CAPTIVE AUDIENCE This 5-year-old stallion from the barn of trainer Douglas Berkeley spent the first half of 2015 facing up against tough customers in Canada, winning just once in ten tries. When he arrived to take part in the eliminations for the Ben Franklin Pace in late June he seemed hopelessly overmatched against some of the best older pacers in the world. But he snuck into the final with a surprising third in the elimination, and then acquitted himself well in the final by finishing just 1 ½ lengths back of winner Luck Be Withyou. Instead of returning to Canada, he decided to stick around and test his mettle in the Pocono condition wars. His first attempt was a ringing success, as he handled a field of non-winners of $25,000 in the last five races in a career-best 1:48:4. He actually dropped down in class for his start Saturday night against the non-winners of $18,000 in the last five, but it may have been a tougher test because he was saddled with the outside #9 post. Instead of getting to the lead on the front stretch as he had in his previous victory, Captive Audience had to sit back early in fifth. He then was forced to go three-wide around tiring cover on the back stretch. Yet with the steady guidance of driver Andrew McCarthy, he overcame those obstacles, took the lead late, and came up for the win in 1:49:3. This stallion clearly likes it here at Pocono, and it should be fun to see just what he can do if he sticks around. Other top pacers this week include: American Truth (Matt Romano, Scott DiDomenico), a three-year-old filly who captured her second straight condition victory and third in her last four on Wednesday night, this one coming in a career-best 1:15:3. Priceless Edition (Anthony Napolitano, Pierre Paradis), who stayed as hot as the weather on Friday night with his fourth straight claiming handicap victory in 1:53:1. Versado (George Napolitano Jr., Nick Surick), whose condition win on Friday night in 1:52:1 gave him two wins in just five nights.   TROTTER OF THE WEEK: DEMONS N DIAMONDS Here is another case of a horse arriving at Pocono and taking an immediate liking to his new surroundings. Demons N Diamonds, a three-year-old filly trained by John McDermott, was winless in her first seven starts of the year when she came to Pocono on July 12 to face other distaff trotters in a non-winners of one condition. She won that race in gate-to-wire fashion, then really impressed the following week against the non-winners of two with a victory in a rapid 1:54, a new career-best. If you guessed that she moved up to the non-winners of three condition on Tuesday night, you've clearly been paying attention. She went off as the 3-1 second choice, as bettors made Meadowlands shipper Cutup Hanover the favorite. But it was Demons N Diamonds who hustled to the front end early. And it was Demons N Diamonds who was well-rated by driver Simon Allard, particularly during a :30:1 second quarter. Cutup Hanover ended up going off stride in her pursuit, while Demons N Diamonds held off a game charge from Celebrity Artemis by a half-length to win in 1:55:3. That's three in a row, all while moving up the ladder. Let's watch how high on that ladder she manages to ascend now that's she's found a favorable home base. Honorable mention on the trotting side includes: Smoother Ride (George Napolitano Jr., John McDermott), who easily won his second straight condition win on Tuesday night in 1:53:4. Proud Moment (Simon Allard, Rene Allard), the 10-year-old whose win against a competitive condition group on Saturday night came in 1:52:3. the fastest trotting time of the week at Pocono. Canadian Wildcat (Mike Simons, Dawn Dellaporte), who battled his way to his second straight condition win on Wednesday night, scoring this time in 1:54.   LONG SHOT OF THE WEEK: ENVIOUS HANOVER In Friday night's featured Open Handicap pace for mares, Marcus Miller rallied this former claimer to a win at 33-1, paying off $68.40 on a $2 win ticket.   DRIVER OF THE WEEK: KEVIN WALLIS The veteran driver continued his fine work with the long shots at Pocono, scoring a double on Friday night with both of his winning horses going off at 10-1.   TRAINER OF THE WEEK: NICK SURICK With a training double on Friday night and a single win on Sunday night, it was one of the finest weeks so far in 2015 at Pocono for the always-prolific Surick barn. That will do it for this week, but we'll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at Jim Beviglia

Hannah Miller has taken amateur harness racing by storm. The 24 year old miss scored her 19th victory in 58 seasonal starts when she guided Rise Above It to a 1:57.3 victory in their division of the Catskill Amateur Club's spring pacing series at Monticello Raceway on July 2. And that "Hurricane Hannah" is carrying a lofty .485 UDR one can easily understand the betting public's faith in her abilities. Sent off as odds-on favorite in her race Miller left softly with Rise Above It and when the field settled she moved first-up as the field headed to the half. "He's not a horse that can leave real hard and I knew Matt (Zuccerello with Minnesota Hanover) would be pushing off from the rail so I let everyone settle and then moved first over," Miller explained. Up the backside Rise Above it charged to the front and on the final turn he had five lengths on the field. From there he cruised home an easy winner over CC's Lover and Alan Schwartz. Third place went to Logan's Dragon driven by Dr. Jennifer Lowrey. "He raced real well and was looking for company at the wire," Miller added." Owned by Melvin Fink and Clifford Grundy Rise Above it paid $2.70 for win. He's trained by Nick Surick who had thanks for the owners when he said; "I just want to thank my owners Mel and Cliff for letting Hannah use their horse in series and supporting her and it paid off for them today with a win in the series finale." In the NAADA Series driver Joe Pennacchio made it two in- a -row in with Sir Winston when he guided the veteran gelding to a 2:01 victory over Superiorcourt and driver Bob Krivelin. Third place went to Alan Schwartz with Chuckie B. After a 2:00.1 victory last week while racing on the front end Pennacchio Sir Winston duplicated that effort and once again raced on the lead. "I said last week if he doesn't bleed he'd win and he didn't and we won," Pennacchio said. "He didn't bleed and this week either and he won again." When two horses broke at the start Pennacchio and Sir Winston raced unhurriedly on the lead and got away with easy fractions for the classy old veteran. After a soft half Pennacchio parked all comers and Sir Winston finished strong for a 1-1/2 length triumph. Despite a victory last week and starting from the pole position today the betting crowd didn't have much faith and sent Sir Winston off at odds of over 7-1. Owned by Joe P Racing and trained by Dan Altman he paid $16.40. By John Manzi for NAADA and the Catskill Club

The second matinee harness racing program at Goshen's Historic Track was well attended and those who stayed until the final race on the eight- race card saw the veteran trotter Rev It Now win the race under saddle.On that card there were four races for 2 year-olds, a race for three year olds, two open events-one for trotters and one for pacers- and the trotting race under saddle which saw the veteran trotter Rev It Now win easily in a time of 2:07.4. Rev It Now, a 9-year-old altered son of Revenue S, who has won six races this year hooked to a sulky, was ridden to an 18- length triumph by Helene Gregory. A week prior (June 8) at the Gaitway Farms matinee program, in his initial attempt at under saddle racing, Rev It Now was a 4-1/2 length winner in a time of 2:00.4 over that mile oval again with and Helene Gregory up. "I have always thought that "Rev" would be good under saddle ever since we have had him and I put a saddle on him and rode him myself a few times just going slow," said Hannah Miller, co-owner and the trotter's regular harness driver. "He was super so we decided to give it a shot and qualify him. He qualified excellent at Gaitway under saddle. I think he enjoys this new job and it's a way to mix up his routine and keep him fresh." This year Rev It Now, a career winner of over $258,000 has been a scourge in the Billings and NAADA amateur trots with Miller at the controls. Besides his six victories Rev It Now also has two seconds and three thirds in his 19 seasonal starts and has earned over $26,000 pulling a sulky. Since she gets along so well with the veteran trotter Hannah Miller was asked why she didn't ride him in his two races under saddle. "I haven't had enough practice yet to ride him in a race. I'm working on that but it is difficult and Helene is an excellent rider and has had plenty of experience in these types of races," Miller explained "I plan on continuing to learn and practice and hopefully I will be able to ride him myself in a race one day. "We will be bringing him back to Goshen on July 5th and plan on racing him under saddle at other NY fairs, Vernon, The Red Mile, and hopefully they will have a race at the Meadowlands." Miller shares ownership of Rev It Now with the Nick Surick and the Erv Miller stables. Nick Surick is also the horse's trainer. Also of note on Goshen's Sunday matinee card was the second consecutive victory by No Shame Blue Chip. Fresh off his 2:01.1 seasonal mark ( for a freshman pacing gelding on a half mile track) here last week the altered son of American Ideal was driven to a 2:02: 2 victory by Brian Connor. Peter Gerry recently purchased No Shame Blue Chip. He's trained by Janice Connor. The last of three seasonal matinee programs at the world's oldest harness track will be presented next Sunday, June 21. Then on Thursday, July 2 Historic Track's 107th Grand Circuit meeting will get underway. By John Manzi for Goshen Historic Track

Hannah Miller, the 23-year old miss who has been the scourge of the harness racing amateur ranks, added yet another victory to her fledgling resume when she guided Rev It Now to a come from behind 2:01.4 triumph in the seventh leg of the North American Amateur Drivers Series held at Freehold Raceway on Saturday, April 25. And that accomplishment came on the heels of her win in the final event in the USA-French Friendship Competition the night before at the Meadowlands which vaulted the American team to victory over the French squad. Like she has done in all of her races, the daughter of top trainer Erv Miller, again remained undaunted while competing against her male counterparts. In Freehold's third race on the betting card Hannah started slowly with her trotter and got away sixth at the first stanza, some 12 lengths behind of the early speed duel between Blazing Delores (Jim Marshall IV) and Wygant Prince (Paul Minore). After the :28.3 first quarter Miller waited until the field headed for the halfway point before moving he trotter off the pylons. Still sixth at the half, but now nine lengths behind Wygant Prince's lead, Miller began to urge her trotter up the backside and at the three quarters the crowd could anticipate what was going to happen. On the final turn Rev It Now circled the leaders and took command in the homestretch and trotted away to a solid one-length victory over a fast closing 36-1 shot, Bellagio Hanover, driven by Steve Oldford. Wygant Prince held on for the show dough. The winner is owned by her driver, her dad Erv Miller, and her boyfriend, Nick Surick who is also the horse's trainer. Rev It Now paid $5.80 for win. With her victory Ms. Miller is tops in points in the NAADA trotting series. With just two legs remaining her 59 points is seven better than Alan Schwartz's 52. Rounding out the top five are;Bob Hechkoff (40),Tony Verruso (35) and Paul Minore (22). It's just a shame that the mainstream media doesn't pick up this story of a young woman defeating her male colleges in a sport completely dominated by men. Her triumph at Freehold was her seventh in 22 starts this season and the talented lady has been first or second twelve times driving along with a .460 average. By John Manzi for NAADA

When Maurice Chevalier sang "thank heaven for little girls for they grow bigger every day"; little did NAADA president Joe Faraldo know how true those words were until the USA-French Friendship Competition was completed at The Meadowlands on Friday night (April 24) when America's Hannah Miller won the final leg of the event which vaulted the USA team to a harness racing victory 107-96. Miller reined Jacks to Open to a 1:57.1 triumph which was the second conquest by a girl in the four -race competition. The USA's Monica Banca had won the first leg at Yonkers Raceway last Tuesday (April 21). The girls really came through for us," Faraldo admitted, and then added that winning or losing never really comes into play because amateur racing is a good excuse for human relations. But don't get me wrong, winning is still preferred." After the French team was licensed in New Jersey they had a tour of the new Meadowlands grandstand before they put on their battle gear and readied for the competition in the first race on the betting card. Going into the race it appeared the USA team had the stronger steeds in the 10-race contest and although Hannah Miller's horse got the late money and was sent away as the favorite it took a confident drive by the young lady to get him to the winners circle. When the wings of the staggered starting gate folded Bob Hechkoff gunned his Bambino Hall to the lead from the 10-hole and they had control in a :28.2 opening stanza. Meanwhile Miller and Jacks To Open found a position along the pylons in the back of the field. Hechkoff was forced to keep after his trotter because Picture Perfect (Steve Oldford) was getting plenty of fresh air challenging while on the limb. Smartly, Ms Miller moved Jacks To Open second-up a behind cover supplied by Picture Perfect at the halfway point as the timer flashed :56.4. Oldford's trotter kept going forward which also moved Jacks To Open closer to the lead as the field passed the three quarters. On the final turn Miller moved her charge three-deep and they trotted around Picture Perfect and then took aim at Bambino Hall who had scooted away to a four-length lead at the top of the long homestretch. Perhaps it was the quick pace in the early going that took a toll on the Hechkoff's trotter but as they headed for paydirt Jacks To Open ranged alongside the leader and then spurted away to score a one length triumph over Bambino Hall. Third place was garnered by 55-1 long shot Bloomfieldcantifly, driven by yet another girl, France's Sophie Blanchetiere. The winner, owned by KDM Stables and trained by Nick Surick, paid $4.40 for win. Hannah Miller continues to ride her amazing hot streak. Her record this season now stands at six wins in 21 starts with 12 of those 21 races resulting in an in-the-money finish. In her fledgling career, Miller has won 15 of 41 starts. After her victory which gave the USA the upper hand against their French counterparts Hannah was asked how she felt. "I feel great now but I was a little worried before the race because Perfect Picture won in (1):55.2 last week", she said. "But the race set-up right for me. When he (Perfect Picture) got hung out I saw an opportunity and took advantage of it by moving second-up at the half and then following cover all the way to the top of the stretch. In the lane my horse was the strongest and at the finish we were the best." Now that the competition is over, on Saturday night (April 25) NAADA will treat their guests to a boat ride around the Statue of Liberty on the World Yacht. Then on Sunday the French amateurs will head for home. by John Manzi for NAADA

DOVER, Del.--- Odds On Alpha beats the harness racing odds-on-favorite McArma to win her third straight in $14,000 4&5-Year-Old Mares Winners-Over pace, Monday, Feb. 9 at Dover Downs. Vic Kirby left quickly from post 8 with Odds On Alpha. After taking the lead the Somebeachsomewhere - Odds On Arttoheart five-year-old set all the fractions on the way to her third consecutive triumph. Ross Wolfenden pulled race-favorite McArma out of fourth and began his challenge as the field turned for home. McArma moved up as close as half-a-length but Odds On Alpha was not to be beaten. Megan Rogers Racing owns the winner, trained by Nick Surick, who is now three-for-four in 2015 with a third. McArma was second with Romanascape (Jim Morand) getting up for third. Seawind Ginger led off the card with a 1:54.2 triumph in another $14,000 pace for young mares. Brit Evans and Foulk Stables own the four-year-old daughter of Mach Three - Seawind Gabriella. Annabeth (George Dennis) and Rachelle's Beat (Ron Pierce) finished second and third respectively. Velocity Sonja also recorded her third consecutive win and sixth in her last seven outings, turning in a 1:53.2 score in a $13,000 34&5-Year-Old Mares pace. Megan Deering owns the Art's Chip - Trelise Hanover four-year-old trained by Dylan Davis. Fashion Showdown (Callahan) was second best. Hidden Land (Roger Plante) finished third. The win was the second for driver Allan Davis. John McGill's Star Keeper and Alexachase put a head-to-head stretch battle in an $11,500 female pace with Corey Callahan and Star Keeper, also conditioned by Surick, holding on for a 1:55 victory. Alexachase (Ron Pierce) was a close second with Taylor Rei (Montrell Teague) getting third money. Callahan added four more wins to his meet leading total. Pierce, Kirby, George Dennis and trainer Surick had two wins each. JUST BETTOR LEADS NINE IN DOVER $20,000-$25,000 CLAIMER For the first time, after four straight starts from post 8 in 2015, Just Bettor drew post 6 in the $20,000-$25,000 4&5-Year-Old Claiming Handicap pace, Tuesday Feb. 10 at Dover Downs. Post time is 4:30 p.m. Ken Wood, Bill Ditmar and Steve Iaquinta own Just Bettor, trained by Eric Ell. Last week, the five-year-old, driven by Vic Kirby, led until the final steps of a 1:52.4 mile but had to settle for a third-place finish missing by a neck. In the blanket finish. Wade Wyatt’s Swift As A Shadow, was second by a nose; Jonathan Roberts will drive, and Bettor And Bold, owned by Tim Tetrick and CR Racing was a neck back in fourth. The rest of the field includes Allan Davis driving Reg Hazzard and Legacy Racing’s UF Dragons Cruiser, Harvey Eisman’s Touchdown Mindale, with Corey Callahan, Middle Aged Crazy, racing for O’Tool, McCaffrey and the Somones, handled by Ross Wolfenden. Jim Jacobs’ Button Fly is in the hands of Jason Lynch,  Wayne King’s LA Camcharger piloted by Tony Morgan and LA Express Stables’ Brees Creek and George Dennis. Monday through Thursday racing starts at 4:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday are "dark" days. Sunday post time is 5:30 p.m. Simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred racing is available daily from 12 Noon until 12 Midnight. There is no charge for parking and admission. Reservations are suggested for the Winner's Circle Restaurant and for those planning to stay at Dover Downs Hotel. Call 302-674-4600. Marv Bachrad

DOVER, Del.---.Touchdown Mindale made it two straight harness racing victories romping to a 1:52.1 triumph in the $20,000-$25,000 4&5-Year-Old Claiming Handicap on Tuesday, Jan. 20, at Dover Downs. Meet leading driver Corey Callahan raked up five wins, Ross Wolfenden had four. Callahan guided Touchdown Mindale to his 13th career win and $112,820 earnings. Nick Surick conditions the Always A Virgin-Happy To Be Best gelding for owner Harvey Eisman. Just Bettor (Vic Kirby) closed strongly to finish second with Swift As A Shadow (Allan Davis) third. On the undercard, Christmas spirit remains for pacer Jingle Bell Rocker who won for the sixth straight time. Trace Tetrick piloted the Rocknroll Hanover-Blissard Of Oz gelding trained by Les Givens for owner Tina Clark, all at the $7,500 claiming level. Eddie Davis Jr. drove the longshot winner on the card, Diana Stevenson and Janice Watkinson's Red Skull, at 64-1 odds paying $130.40 for a $2-dollar win bet. Corey Callahan with five wins, Ross Wolfenden with four, dominated the driving stats. Fitness Craze, Tirade Hanover, Tough Mac and Deadliest Catch, all winners last start, tangle in the $18,000 Open trot, the Wednesday feature race. STREAKING FITNESS CRAZE HEADS $18,000 OPEN TROT WEDNESDAY DOVER, Del. ---- Fitness Craze, Tirade Hanover, Deadliest Catch and Tough Mac are all winners last time out and meet in the $18,000 Open/Handicap trot, Wednesday, Jan. 21 at Dover Downs. First post is 4:30 p.m. Rich Lombardo and Howard Taylor's Fitness Craze piloted by Daryl Bier, has won his last three races in-a-row and puts his win streak on the line in the week's top trot. After a week off, Steve Ross, the Solomons and trainer Leigh Raymer's Tirade Hanover, with Vic Kirby driving, returns to action. Other winners seeking to keep win streaks on the line include Mike Casalino'sTough Mac, an impressive winner for Corey Callahan last Wednesday and John Duer drove L&L DeVisser and Peninsula Farm's Deadliest Catch to paydirt. The rest of the strong field includes Tina Clark and Joe Clark's fast finishing Baximum, driven by Allan Davis, Powerful Charger, owned by Tim Tetrick and trainer Jim King moves from the outside to post 2 with Trace Tetrick.I Like My Boss leaves from the rail with Jonathan Roberts for the Parsons and trainer Bob Shahan and hard-hitting I'm So Striking with Eddie Dennis makes his first start since mid-November. Monday through Thursday post time is 4:30 p.m. There is no live racing Fridays and Saturdays. Sunday post time is 5:30 p.m. Marv Bachrad

MANALAPAN, NJ – December 13, 2014 – Eric Abbatiello captured his fifth driving title and Nick Surick claimed his first training title when the 2014 racing season concluded at Freehold Raceway on Saturday, December 13, 2014. Abbatiello completed the 2014 meet with 190 wins, 185 seconds and 134 thirds from 995 starts and earnings of $719,339.  “It’s been a pleasure to compete at Freehold Raceway and win the driving title the last five years,” Abbatiello said. “A special thanks to all the trainers, owners and grooms who have given me a chance to compete with their horses.” Abbatiello, 46, from East Windsor, NJ, has 1,647 career victories and nearly $11 million in earnings.  The runners-up in the driving competition at Freehold were James Marshall III with 148 wins, Stephen Smith with 127 and Vincent Ginsburg with 117. Surick collected 54 training wins during the meet toward his career total of 466. His stable also lead the way with earnings of $199,465.  “Freehold Raceway is synonymous with harness racing, and Freehold is my hometown,” said Surick, 26, from Freehold, NJ. “There is no higher honor than one being bestowed on you in your hometown. Winning the training title at Freehold Raceway was once a dream; now it’s a reality.” Vincent Fusco with 41 wins, Karen Garland with 33 wins and Julius Czermann Jr. with 31 wins were his closest challengers in the trainers’ race.  The end of the meet also marked the end of the racing career of Newsam, a 14-year-old gelding, who was honored in the winner’s circle after he won the second race. He retires with 63 victories, 49 second and 49 thirds from 313 starts, and earnings of $393,732.  He has spent most of his racing career with owner Robin Hess of Burlington, NJ and trainer Ken Hess. His final campaign also produced his most wins in a year – 10.  Freehold’s live racing season resumes on January 2, 2015 with a 110-date meet. The first qualifiers will be held on Friday, January 2 before switching to Thursday mornings. Post time for qualifiers is 9:30 a.m. by Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 18, 2014 - George "The Minister of Speed" Brennan pressed Cut A Deal in a move to the lead on the final turn and drew away for a nine and three-quarter length victory in the $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final for three-year-old pacing fillies, the third race on Saturday, October 18, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. Cut A Deal [$8.20] followed 1-5 favorite Fanticipation before pulling away for the victory, crossing the wire in 1:54.2, tossing in a last quarter of 28.4. Both are daughters of Rocknroll Hanover. Ideal Helen [Western Ideal] was third by 13 1/4 lengths. Cut A Deal, trained by Nick Surick, improved her record to four wins, two seconds and six thirds in 24 starts this year and has finished in-the-money in 20 of 36 career outings. The victory pushed her career bankroll to $106,295 for the JL Benson Stables Inc. of Fort Lauderdale, FL. Cut A Deal The Green Acres program has two more events in 2014 - both for three-year-old colt and gelding trotters - the third leg on October 23 and the $25,000 final on October 30. The last of the New Jersey Futurity divisions for two-year-old pacers is set for October 25, also at Freehold. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

YONKERS, NY, Wednesday, October 8, 2014--Yonkers Raceway has a simple four-word, 15-letter request for everyone attending the sixth annual harness racing Fall Harvest Festival, set for this Saturday night (Oct. 11). "Have Fun. Wear Pink." All the popular Festival sights, sounds and tastes are back... music, pony rides, New York State craft beers, exciting harness racing (including the Legislators' Challenge), face painting, a pumpkin patch and so much more in a fun, family atmosphere. Now, the reason for the request. Empire City, Yonkers Raceway, its horsemen and the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) have once again joined in the fight against breast cancer. A donation of $10 shall be made (with a maximum gift of $15,000) to the Susan G. Komen Greater NYC Chapter for every Fall Harvest Festival guest who wears the color du jour. In keeping with the theme, pink horseshoes shall be given away on the apron (while supplies last), all the drivers that evening are carrying pink whips and the winning horses receive pink blankets, sponsored (alphabetically) by Team Allard, Richard Banca, Amber Buter, Rick Dane Jr., Scott DiDomenico, Mark Ford, Allan Johnson, Peter Pellegrino, Jody Riedel, Brittany Robertson, Nick Surick and Anita Vallee. Representatives from the Komen organization are also going to be on hand to answer questions, provide informational materials and accept an oversized donation check in the winner's circle at 6:30 PM. Need some extra incentive to help a worthy cause? The first 1,500 Empire Club members who visit a promotions booth that day receive a free, $2 exacta box ticket on one of that evening's live races. The Fall Harvest Festival takes place trackside from 4 PM-8 PM, with the first Legislators' Challenge races set for 5:30 PM. Post time for the live racing card is the usual 7:10 PM. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

If you like trotters then Mohawk Racetrack was the place to be Tuesday evening, as the Campbellville, Ontario oval hosted five OSS Grassroots divisions for three-year-old fillies of the square-gaited variety. Quadrophenia prevailed in the first division, though things didn’t look pretty for the Dave Menary trainee at the head of the lane. James MacDonald treated the even-money favourite to a two-hole trip behind Diamonds For Life who threw down panels of :28, :57.2 and 1:27.1 before coughing up the lead to Suegrabbitnrun. Quadrophenia was double up in the two-hole looking for room, and she was fortune to get it in deep stretch. She then used a :29.4 closing quarter to win by a length over Suegrabbitnrun, with Northern Secret a well-beaten third. Kjell Magne Andersen of Slependen, Norway owns the youngster who improved her 2014 record to 4-2-0 from nine starts with the win. Despite being unraced as a rookie, the filly has stashed away $37,900 to date. Mystical Wishes had a rough trip at Rideau Carleton Raceway in her latest, but she bounced back and won as she pleased in the second division. Doug McNair rallied the 1-5 favourite to the three-length score over Flexible Woman in 1:57.1. Taking home the show dough was Carefulwhatyouwish. Tony Alagna trains the homebred daughter of Muscle Mass for Indiana partners, Mystical Marker Farms LLC of Dyer and Peggy Hood of Valparaiso. The filly was winless in four starts last season, but she’s now 6-for-11 this year. She’s managed to bank over $48,000 to date. Dream Act destroyed the field she faced in the third division. Mario Baillargeon powered to the lead with the daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe-Dream Of Becca, and she successfully whacked out panels of :28, :56.4 and 1:25.2 en route to the eight-length triumph over Aphrodity in 1:55.2. Missys Ga Ga rounded out the top three finishers. Andy Miller Stable Inc, Nick Surick and Hannah Miller share ownership on the Ben Baillargeon trainee who won for the first time in six starts this season. The $9,000 payday lifted her lifetime loot to $34,320. Serendipitious forced a recall in the fourth division when she broke behind the gate and had her overcheck pop off, but she had a flawless start the second go around and went on to post a victory for driver Chris Christoforou. The Daughter of Majestic Son-Royal B G survived a first-over trip en route to posting the 1:58.2 win over Doweypuffandhow and Capturethememory. Guy Polillo of Brantford, Ontario owns the filly who is now 2-for-2 since relocating to the stable of trainer John Mungillo. The three-time winner bumped her lifetime bankroll to $28,772 with the win. Torches Star extended her OSS winning streak to three-in-a-row thanks to a career-best clocking of 1:57.2 in the final division. Steve Condren brushed the Ben Wallace trainee to the lead in the backstretch, and after doling out middle splits of :58 and 1:28 she was able to generate a :29.2 closing quarter which was good enough to earn her the score by three-quarters of a length over Chelseas Chance. Taking home the show dough was K D Bella. Brad Grant of Milton, Ontario owns the filly who improved this year’s record to 4-0-2 from 11 starts with the win. She’s banked in excess of $40,000 this year and more than $88,000 to date.   Before the pari-mutuel card got underway at Mohawk tonight, the $18,000 Grassroots final division for 3yo filly trotters that was rained out last night was held as a non-wagering event prior to Tuesday evening’s 12-race card. Jack Litten shot to the top from Post 8 for driver Doug McNair, and after slicing out splits of :27.4, :57.2 and 1:26.4 he fired home in :29.4 to win by 2-3/4 lengths over Class Me Nice in 1:56.3. Taking home third prize was Massive Pockets. Gregg McNair trains the son of Muscle Mass-PJ Naomi for Jarold Hawks of Jeddo, Michigan, and together they watched the gelding improve this year’s record to 2-1-3 from 11 starts with the win. The $9,000 payday bumped his overall earnings to $38,962. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

HONESDALE PA, Wed., Aug. 6 - Come tomorrow morning, Jeff Firmstone, racing secretary at the Wayne County Fair in Honesdale PA, may have a painting chore to perform - but it'll be one he'd be happy to do. Today is the first day of the Honesdale Fair's racing program under the "Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes 2-Day Meet" banner, sponsored by the local Jaycees, and Firmstone has two fields set to go in a $2200 free-for-all pace. With good weather and good luck, Jeff thinks his fields have a chance to rewrite the all-time local pacing record of 1:56.2, set by Alastor Hanover in 2010 - and if that happens, on Thursday Firmstone and buckets and brushes will be whitewashing and then repainting, and happily. One of the horses who seems to have a good chance is trained and will be driven by the man who holds the current Honesdale standards on both the trot and the pace - Roger Hammer (who set the track trot mark of 2:02 with the renown Vivid Photo during the same week as "Alastor"'s pacing record). He'll be guiding Rockabella, who will start from post two in the second division. Rockabella won over the Philadelphia oval in 1:52f two starts ago, and he has a positional edge on his main paper foe, Only The Lonely (outside post four, driver Hannah Miller, trainer Nick Surick), who has also won in 1:52 this year, was racetimed in 1:50.4 at The Meadowlands in his last start, and shows half-mile track ability with a win at Monticello earlier this campaign. The Miller/Surick team will also start Esprit De Kayjay A from post three in the first FFA division - this one has a lifetime mark of 1:51.3, and in 2014 won a qualifier over the half-mile track at Freehold in 1:55.4h. Just to "Esprit"'s outside is the ageless Tarver Hanover - perhaps not quite the 1:49.2 pacer of yesteryear, nor the 1:52.3h winner at Harrington a couple of campaigns back, but the 13YO from the Dinges barn has been consistently pacing sub-1:55 miles at Pocono and Tioga in recent starts. FINISHING LINES - Hannah Miller, from the Erv/Marcus line of Millers (not the David/Brett line), has a lifetime UDR of .556 in the first eight driving starts of her career. She may improve on that figure with some luck today, when racing begins at Honesdale at 4 p.m. From the Pennsylvania Fair Harness Horsemen's Association  

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 31, 2014 - If the pieces all fall into place, the connections of Western Vintage could be sipping champagne on Saturday. the son of Western Ideal is making his return to the races, after being sidelined since late June, in the $225,000 Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic, the fourth of 15 races on the Hambletonian Day program on Saturday, August 2, 2014 at the Meadowlands. The New Jersey Classic and its filly companion event, the $100,000 Thomas D'Altrui Miss New Jersey for fillies, are restricted to New Jersey-sired three-year-old pacers. Both events are sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. In a well-balanced field, Western Vintage is rated the 5-2 second choice [Doo Wop Hanover is 9-5] and will leave from post two with Brian Sears at the lines. Last season, Western Vintage won five of eight races and earned $316,838. His victories included the $150,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes Championship for two-year-old pacing colts and a division of the Bluegrass Stakes at the Red Mile. He finished second in the $648,850 Metro Pace at Mohawk. This all marked the bargain colt - he cost only $7,000 at the 2012 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale - as a potential divisional star at three. Health issues, however, detoured Western Vintage after four starts this spring. "We gave him a break after the Hempt [on June 21] for a couple of reasons," said Perry Soderberg, the colt's co-owner. "One, because he had some really tough races up to that point, and two, his blood work wasn't perfect so we needed some time to improve that. It is a long year and another year after this one, so we want to take care of the horse." Western Vintage opened his 2014 campaign with a New Jersey Sire Stakes win in 1:49.4 on May 17 at the Meadowlands and a week later was second to Doo Wop Hanover in the $100,000 final. Then it was on the road to Mohawk Raceway for the North America Cup elims [he finished fourth] and to Pocono for the Hempt [he was eighth]. Trainer Nancy Johansson qualified Western Vintage twice in July, including a 1:50.3 clocking and five and a half length victory on July 19 in the hands of new pilot Brian Sears. "Well, Yannick [Gingras, who previously drove the colt] has been great, but he has [Jimmy] Takter's and [Ron] Burke's horses to choose from down the road, and they have been better than mine so far this year," Soderberg explained. "I know Brian has JK Endofanera and other options as well, but I am thankful that he wants to drive him now. "All in all, I thought it was time to get the horse used to different drivers," he added. "He has been a bit tricky to drive, but he better get used to different drivers; that's how this business works." Swedish-born Soderberg, who has been evaluating horses since 1986, usually picks out yearlings for others, primarily trainer Jimmy Takter and his owners. But when no one wanted Western Vintage, he purchased the colt for himself for $7,000. Marvin Katz of Toronto bought an interest last October. With $53,890 earned this year, Western Vintage now has a bankroll of $370,728. "Western Vintage is coming in to this race in good shape," said Soderberg. "He qualified well, and I think he is the type of horse that can race good after a break." Post time on Saturday, August 2, 2014 is 12 noon with gates opening at 10 a.m. Admission is $5. The $1 million Hambletonian [Race 13] and $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks [Race 12] and the $300,650 John Cashman Jr. Memorial Trot will be featured on the live television broadcast from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on CBS Sports Network [for Channel Finder -]. The program will be hosted by Gary Seibel, Dave Brower and Justin Horowitz. The fields for the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey with post, horse, sire, driver, trainer and morning line odds: Race 4 - $225,000 ANTHONY ABBATIELLO NEW JERSEY CLASSIC 1-Doo Wop Hanover - Rocknroll Hanover - Yannick Gingras - Steve Elliott - 9-5 2-Western Vintage - Western Ideal - Brian Sears - Nancy Johansson - 5-2 3-Rockeyed Optimist - Rocknroll Hanover - Matt Kakaley - Steve Elliott - 20-1 4-Buckwacker - Rocknroll Hanover - David Miller - Chris Ryder - 9-2 5-Sweet Rock - Rocknroll Hanover - Brett Miller - Wayne Given - 20-1 6-Dancin Hill - Rocknroll Hanover - Scott Zeron - Tony Alagna - 10-1 7-Rock Out - Rocknroll Hanover - Tim Tetrick - Steve Elliott - 15-1 8-Card Shock- Cam's Card Shark - George Brennan - Mark Silva - 20-1 9-Beat The Drum - Tell All - Ron Pierce - Staffan Lind - 6-1 10-Rocknroll Reality - Rocknroll Hanover - Corey Callahan - John Butenschoen - 12-1 Race 3 - $100,000 THOMAS D'ALTRUI MISS NEW JERSEY 1-Ideal Helen - Western Ideal - Marcus Miller - Erv Miller - 10-1 2-Act Now - Western Ideal - Brian Sears - Nikolas Drennan - 3-1 3-Gettingreadytoroll - Rocknroll Hanover - Yannick Gingras - Jimmy Takter - 2-1 4-My Lady Day - Western Ideal - David Miller - Joe Holloway - 15-1 5-Surfside Sexy - Rocknroll Hanover - Ron Pierce - Ron Burke - 20-1 6-Cut A Deal - Rocknroll Hanover - George Brennan - Nick Surick - 20-1 7-Blixtra - Rocknroll Hanover - Ake Svanstedt - Ake Svandstedt - 9-2 8-Highland Rockstar - Rocknroll Hanover - Mike Lachance - Buzzy Sholty - 20-1 9-Rockingcam Park - Rocknroll Hanover - Tim Tetrick - Ron Coyne Jr. - 8-1 10- Kate Can't Wait - Rocknroll Hanover - Corey Callahan - Ross Croghan - 6-1 By Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ  

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 30, 2014 - Saturday's Hambletonian Day 15-race card at the Meadowlands is loaded with rich stakes worth nearly $3.6 million in purse money, including the $225,000 Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic and its filly companion race, the $100,000 Thomas D'Altrui Miss New Jersey. The two stakes for New Jersey-sired three-year-old pacers are early in the card - the third race for the Miss New Jersey and the fourth race for the New Jersey Classic - and have the possibility of being two of the most contentious and bettor-friendly events, with no prohibitive favorites. Racing conditions for the two stakes were amended to eliminate eliminations. The finals are limited to the 10 highest lifetime money-winning horses in the entry box. To further sweeten the pot, even those who do not share in the top five purse distribution will not go home empty-handed. The connections of the New Jersey Classic colts finishing sixth through 10 will receive $1,500 each while the connections of the Miss New Jersey fillies will receive $1,000 each. "We are very pleased that we have full and competitive fields for both stakes, in fact, 11 entered in each with 10 going postward," said Tom Luchento, president of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey [SBOANJ], which sponsors the two races. "We feel stallions will return to New Jersey once we have casino-infused purses, a likelihood in the next few years, but for now we are trying our best to make it worthwhile for breeders to support our program and owners to buy New Jersey-sired offspring with the opportunity to compete in such events as the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey," Luchento added. Post time on Saturday, August 2, 2014 is 12 noon with gates opening at 10 a.m. Admission is $5. The $1 million Hambletonian [Race 13] and $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks [Race 12] and the $300,650 John Cashman Jr. Memorial Trot will be featured on the live television broadcast from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on CBS Sports Network [for Channel Finder -]. The program will be hosted by Gary Seibel, Dave Brower and Justin Horowitz. The fields for the New Jersey Classic and Miss New Jersey with post, horse, sire, driver, trainer and morning line odds: Race 4 - $225,000 ANTHONY ABBATIELLO NEW JERSEY CLASSIC 1-Doo Wop Hanover - Rocknroll Hanover - Yannick Gingras - Steve Elliott - 9-5 2-Western Vintage - Western Ideal - Brian Sears - Nancy Johansson - 5-2 3-Rockeyed Optimist - Rocknroll Hanover - Matt Kakaley - Steve Elliott - 20-1 4-Buckwacker - Rocknroll Hanover - David Miller - Chris Ryder - 9-2 5-Sweet Rock - Rocknroll Hanover - Brett Miller - Wayne Given - 20-1 6-Dancin Hill - Rocknroll Hanover - Scott Zeron - Tony Alagna - 10-1 7-Rock Out - Rocknroll Hanover - Tim Tetrick - Steve Elliott - 15-1 8-Card Shock- Cam's Card Shark - George Brennan - Mark Silva - 20-1 9-Beat The Drum - Tell All - Ron Pierce - Staffan Lind - 6-1 10-Rocknroll Reality - Rocknroll Hanover - Corey Callahan - John Butenschoen - 12-1   Race 3 - $100,000 THOMAS D'ALTRUI MISS NEW JERSEY 1-Ideal Helen - Western Ideal - Marcus Miller - Erv Miller - 10-1 2-Act Now - Western Ideal - Brian Sears - Nikolas Drennan - 3-1 3-Gettingreadytoroll - Rocknroll Hanover - Yannick Gingras - Jimmy Takter - 2-1 4-My Lady Day - Western Ideal - David Miller - Joe Holloway - 15-1 5-Surfside Sexy - Rocknroll Hanover - Ron Pierce - Ron Burke - 20-1 6-Cut A Deal - Rocknroll Hanover - George Brennan - Nick Surick - 20-1 7-Blixtra - Rocknroll Hanover - Ake Svanstedt - Ake Svandstedt - 9-2 8-Highland Rockstar - Rocknroll Hanover - Mike Lachance - Buzzy Sholty - 20-1 9-Rockingcam Park - Rocknroll Hanover - Tim Tetrick - Ron Coyne Jr. - 8-1 10- Kate Can't Wait - Rocknroll Hanover - Corey Callahan - Ross Croghan - 6-1 By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 18, 2014 - A late afternoon summer storm failed to dampen the enthusiasm of the 110 golfers who competed at the 19th Annual SBOANJ Golf Outing & Fundraiser on July 14, 2014 at Gambler Ridge Golf Course in Cream Ridge, NJ. A total of 125 golfers and banquet attendees feasted on a prime rib dinner. Numerous door prizes were distributed along with presentations for golfing prowess. Best foursome honors went to Kunz Equine Team of Simon Spicer, Mike Seddon, Shannon Murphy and Johnny Pregman. The "most honest" foursome award went to Jim Hogan, Jesse Johnson, John Hynes and Frank VanWie. Longest drive-prizes went to Hannah Miller, who won Kindle Fire tablet, and Jeff Bamond Jr., who received a Boze Bluetooth speaker Closest to the Pin was Simon Spicer from of the Kunz Equine Team, who won a 32-inch HD TV. Putting contest honors - and $145 - went to Kelly Breen. Frank Lomangino won the drawing for a Track Trainer jog cart, which was donated by Allen Eggert of Pennsbury Enterprises. The 50-50 winner was Garrett Federico, whose share was $895. Sponsorships, key to the fund raising effort which benefits New Jersey's standardbred horsemen in need, were provided at several levels. The overall tournament sponsors were Shay Cowan of Katz/Pierz, and Thomas Cordovano and John Macri of the La Ferla Group. At the Gold Level, the donors were the Meadowlands Racetrack; Drucker, Math & Whitman CPAs; Berman, Gara & Rutsky Group/UBS Financial Services; Joie de Vie Farms and Rollermagic Roller Rinks. At the Silver Level, the donors were Showplace Farms, Gaitway Farms, Federico's Landscape Design, Santoro & Santoro [Dennis Dowd], Valley High Stables, Freehold Raceway, Eposimato Stable, Mark Ford Training Stable, Nick Salenetri, Aetna/Meritain Health, Hambletonian Society and Val D'Or Farms. At the Bronze Level, the donors are Advocacy Management Group, Network Security Group, New Jersey Community Bank, Chris Ryder and Nick Surick. Additional fundraising was accomplished through the donation of goods and services by Bluestone Farms, Deo Volente Farm, Gambler Ridge Golf Club, Ellen Harvey, Meadowbrook Industries, Makefield Highlands Golf Club, Northwood Bloodstock, Pennsbury Enterprises, Reynolds Hay & Straw/Tribute Equine Nutrition, Rick's Saddle Shop/Purina, Baker Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram and Newport Graphics. Dinner, lunch and competition awards were underwritten by Martin Scharf, Deo Volente Farm, Berman, Gara & Rutsky, Electric Battery Company, Network Security Group, Nick Surick, Marc and Marcia Goldberg and Green Acquisition Corp. Hole sponsors were Berman Gara & Rutsky, John and Paula Campbell, Drucker, Math & Whitman, Thomas J. Durkin/ Joseph Spadaro, Green Acquisition Corp, Joie de Vie Farms, Katz/Pierz, La Ferla Group, Meadowlands Racetrack, Andy Miller, Ervin Miller Stable, Network Security Group, Rollermagic Roller Rinks and Suydam Insurance Agency. The SBOANJ golf outing is co-chaired by SBOANJ directors Ed Razzetti and Bob Baggitt Sr. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

It seems like 1:54.3 is a final race time that 4-year-old stallion pacers like to adhere to at Monticello Raceway. On Tuesday (July 8) Only The Lonely joined two others in the Mighty M record books when the son of Western Ideal-Lonesome Day reeled-off a wire to wire triumph in 1:54.3 in his first pari-mutuel start this season. That mile equaled the record held by both All My Life (2005) and Lover Boy (2012). Marcus Miller was in the sulky for trainer Nick Surick and sent Only The Lonely to the lead from the seven-hole and they were in command before the quarter mile was paced in :28.2. From there Miller was just buggy ridding as they passed the half-way point in :57.3 and then they came a final half in :57.0 to win by a one and -a- quarter lengths over Memory Game and by JohnMike Merton. Only The Lonely came into the race off a 1:52.1 qualifier at Gaitway Farm with his trainer at the lines on June 23. Surick watched today and was pleased with his horse's mile. "He won in 1:50 and a piece last year and earned over $96,000 and he went a real good mile here in his first start this year. He We didn't want to face the 'bearcats' in his first start back so I called Eric (Warner Monticello Raceway's director of racing) and he told me he had a race for non-winner of seven races lifetime so we decided to bring him here for his first pari-mutuel start, Surick said and then added,"He (Only The Lonely) went a good mile today on the half-mile track here and he looked like himself. He's a nice horse and we're looking for a year from him." Co-owned by Surick, KDM Stable and the J.L. Benson Stable Only The Lonely paid $3.50 for win. Marcus Miller and Nick Surick teamed- up again in a later race and were victorious with Yanoyanomenow in a time of 1:55.0 However Only The Lonely's 1:54.3 wasn't the fastest mile on the hot and humid afternoon. Trainer Bob Lounsbury's CC Stormy was victorious for Bruce Aldrich, Jr. in 1:54.1. The same combination scored again with Dreamluck in 1:54.4. Also on the card the winningest horse in North America, Diamond Tiara now in a new barn, faced the boys for the first time this year after winning 17 times against her own gender, and she didn't fare well. She finished off the board for the first time in 23 seasonal starts. by John Manzi, for Monticello Raceway

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