Day At The Track
Search Results
1 to 16 of 261
1 2 3 4 5 Next »

MONTICELLO, NY- When the gate sprung in the North American Amateur Drivers Association's (NAADA) trot at Monticello Raceway on the pleasant afternoon of July 19, little was left for the imagination after "Yankee Joe" Lee gunned Soul Train to the lead and played catch me if you can, and nobody could, as Lee's trotter circled the Mighty M double-oval in a time of 1:58.2 to finish five lengths in front of six others in the sixth leg of the 10-race harness racing trotting series. "I had been racing him (Soul Train) from behind but he didn't seem to like passing horses when moved him so I figured I'd try to race him in front and it seems that's just what the old guy likes," Lee said while hanging up the line in the race paddock after the contest. "This is the third time we won on the engine." When the starter said "go" Lee hustled Soul Train to the lead and opened daylight on the field as a few got tangled on the first turn. But once in front it seemed like the farther the veteran trotter went the more his lead seemed impossible to overcome. Soul Train, sent off as the odds-on favorite in the race, trotted by the first quarter in :28.1 and Lee kept the pedal to the metal as they passed the halfway point in :57.4 with Paul Minore and Wygant Prince tight on his back. But that didn't last long when they headed up the backside as Soul Train widened to a three-length lead by the third stanza and then increased to five lengths as the field headed for home. With Lee swinging on him, Soul Train cruised home an easy winner. Keenan rallied to be second for John Calabrese as Wygant Prince faded and finished third. For Lee, who was last season's National Amateur Driver of the Year, it marked his sixth driving victory this year and his win today places him atop the NAADA Summer Series leaderboard With his triumph Soul Train, a 7-year-old Trainforthefuture gelding, raised his career earnings to over $383,000. He is co-owned by Lee , the Blindwitch Stable, Good Friends Racing, and Santo Farina, and trained by Jose Godinez. He paid $3.30. NAADA members are getting ready to entertain their counterparts from Italy in early August for another Friendship competition, the third time this season that the longstanding international amateur organization will be hosting amateur drivers from Europe. by John Manzi, for NAADA

MONTICELLO, NY--Amateur driver, Joe Lee, proved that when a horse is the best in a race send him to the lead and if he gets beat on the front-end then he wasn't the best when he started. But fear not Joe, your calculations were precise in the sixth race at Monticello Raceway on Thursday afternoon, June 28. When he drove Soul Train in the third leg of the NAADA trotting series he sent his charge to the front and not only did Soul Train win, but he made a laugh-er out of the contest scoring an 11-length triumph over seven others in a race timed in 1:59.1. "When I drove him here (at Monticello) two weeks ago we were comfortable on the lead and had three lengths on the field as we headed for home but in mid-stretch it felt like someone cut the lines and Soul Train 'caved-in'. But after the race we found out the reason he stopped (and finished a well-beaten fourth) was because he bled," Lee said. "We treated him and he raced like a champ this week. In today's contest Lee gunned Soul Train to the lead from the five-hole and the veteran pacer had command in a :28.2 first quarter. The lead then opened to two lengths as they passed the halfway point and when Soul Train headed up the backside he began to put distance between himself and the remainder of the field. The farther he went the bigger the lead became. It was eight lengths at the three quarters; nine lengths at the top of the stretch and 11-lengths at the finish. " I knew we were going to win it but I was surprised to find that there were no horses even close as we headed for home," Lee added. "It felt kinda strange to win by so many(11) lengths and a margin of victory of that magnitude doesn't happen often." The race turned out to be for second place when Woody and driver Bob Krivelin came from the back of the pack to finish second at odds of 33-1. Third place went to Keenan (John Calabrese) who was just a neck off Woody at the wire. Soul Train, a 7-year-old Trainforthefuture gelding, is owned by Blindswitch Racing, Good Friends Stable, Santo Farina and Joe Lee. Sent off as the slight favorite in the race he returned a $4.70 win payoff. For Lee, who was the Amateur Driver of the Year last season, it marked his 5th victory thus far in 2018. by John Manzi, for NAADA                  

MONTICELLO,NY- There's an old adage that states "good things come to those who wait" and that expression fits John Calabrese's trotting victory today (Thursday, June 21) at Monticello Raceway to a tee. "I got away fourth along the pylons and just bided my time," Calabrese said after he reined Keenan to a come-from-behind 2:00.2 triumph in the second leg of the NAADA Trotting Series at the Sullivan County oval."As the race progressed I kept moving up after the horses in front of me kept pulling (moving to the outside) and in the stretch my horse was full of trot." When the gate sprung Alan Schwartz hustled Tim Lizzi to the lead from the two-hole as Joe Faraldo found room behind the leader with Tough Get Going after a quick start from post position six. They were one-two as the field passed the first stanza in a soft :29.4 and remained that way past the half in 1:01.2 and by the three quarters in 1:30.4. Meanwhile, Calabrese and Keenan were viewing the front-end action while still some four lengths of the leader. Then midway around the final turn Faraldo moved Tough Get Going to the outside and they raced head-to-head with Tim Lizzi. However, unbeknownst to the leaders Calabrese's trotter kept moving up and was just lengths off Tim Lizzi as the field rounded the final turn. In the lane Tough Get Going was stronger than Tim Lizzi but Keenan was the strongest of all and rallied in the passing lane to a solid one-length triumph in a time of 2:00.3. "When I reached the passing lane I felt confident that Keenan could pass the leaders because he was still strong, even with his left knee-boot down around his hoof ," Calabrese said."But the classy old veteran trotter didn't flinch a bit and just kept to his work." Later Calabrese explained that Keenan's knee boot slipped down the horse's left front leg as they sometimes do. However, when something like that happens a trotter usually goes off-stride but the 10 year old Credit Winner gelding and lifetime winner of over $564,000, shrugged it off and didn't miss a beat and kept going forward as Tough Get Going headed Tim Lizzi for second money. Calabrese owns and trains the winner who paid $47.00 for win. And the trifecta of 6-7-2 returned a whopping $2221.00. by John Manzi, for NAADA

MONTICELLO, NY - Over the lengthy existence of the North American Amateur Drivers Association the organization has donated tens of thousands of dollars to worthwhile industry causes and worthwhile charities. Recently NAADA has donated $500 to both the Harness Horse Youth Foundation and to New Vocations. "These are two very worthwhile charities doing very great work in our industry and for the Pro-Am event coming at Scioto Downs on Tuesday(June 19), noted NAADA president, Joe Faraldo. "The special race card that day provides a great opportunity for our amateur drivers to drive some of the industry's greatest drivers , Aaron Merriman, Dan Noble and Tim and Trace Tetrick." This racing card will feature various amateurs racing alongside the aforementioned professionals with monies raised to be donated to deserving charities. The Pro-Am events will be showcased in races two, four, five and seven with race 10 strictly for members of the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series. by John Manzi, for NAADA

YONKERS, NY- The $15,000 final event of the 10-leg North American Amateur Drivers Association Trotting Series (NAADA) was raced at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday evening, May 24, and when the well-contested race was over Monica Banca walked away with all the marbles. The talented lady reined Master of Excuses to a 1-1/2 length triumph in a time of 1:58.1. It was the Scandinavian-native's first win in the series although her total of 36 points in the preliminaries was fourth best. In a race that was dominated by quick early speed the eventual winner picked up cover after the half and the kept moving forward. After the race began Wygant Prince (Paul Minore) was locked in an early sped duel with Soul Train (Joe Lee) and they were head-to-head when they passed the first stanza in a swift :27.3. No sooner had Wygant Prince cleared to the lead Dr John Kokinos moved Here Comes Numbers out to challenge and they were one-two as the timer flashed :58. After the half a host of trotters were on the move including Master of Excuses who got first call at the three quarters despite being three-deep. He was closely followed by Ladys Big Stormont with Alan Schwartz at the controls while Tomy Ciuffelli was looking for daylight with Someway Same Hall. But when the field came off the final turn Monica Banca and Master of Excuses had opened up a three length lead l and as they raced for the finish Ms Banca's charge hung tough and went on to victory. Ciuffetelli's trotter rallied to be second while Schwartz and the series point winner, Ladys Big Stormont, held on for the show dough. "This was a heck of a series" stated NAADA President Joe Faraldo. "We had 10 very competitive legs at both Yonkers and Monticello and the series was great for the amateur movement." On June 7th NAADA will sponsor summer trotting series with races at both Yonkers and Monticello Raceway weekly culminating in a $15,000 finale on August 16. by John Manzi for NAADA

In the early 1980's when the CKG Billing Harness Driving Series was instituted and abetted by the North American Amateur Drivers Association little did the founders of each realize that amateur racing would become such an integral part of the industry and spur on many amateur clubs in harness racing. And when the realization that amateur racing could be wagered on there is hardly a racetrack in the Northeast that doesn't rely on carding races for amateur drivers to supplement their wagering cards. However, with the proliferation of clubs and organizations that cater to amateur drivers so many local clubs have sprung up in recent years that the Billings Series, the granddaddy of all amateur organizations, has found that finding drivers to travel to various racetracks in the US and Canada has taken a hit since many participants opt to compete in local clubs and forsake the traveling. However, tonight (May 11), over the one-mile oval at the Meadowlands the first race on the betting card was relegated to the recreational participants in the eastern region of the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series. In that contest eight amateur drivers lined-up behind the starting gate for a wagering event and when the judges posted the official sign Jennifer "Lady J" Lappe emerged victorious with her veteran trotter, FoxValley Steffen in a very creditable time of 1:55.1. Overlooked and sent off at odds of over 6-1, "Lady J" angled her charge to the pylons as the wings of the mobile gate folded and was content to travel along in fifth position. When the field headed to the third stanza Ms Lappe rallied her trotter and by the time they rounded the final turn they were third on the outside behind pace-setter Danish Durango (Bob "the Headhunter" Hechkoff) and Shady McCoy in rein to Dave "the Rave" Offenberg. When the field headed down the long homestretch the three aforementioned were across the racetrack but as they approached the finish line Fox Valley Steffen proved too tough for the others and went on to a two length triumph. Shady Mccoy finished second a long neck in front of Danish Durango. Each of the drivers of the top three finishers are also members of other amateur clubs. In fact every driver in the race belongs to a multitude of amateur organizations. It was the second consecutive victory and 35th of his illustrious career for Fox Valley Steffen who with this riumph has raised his lifetime earnings to nearly $400,000. He paid $15.40; $8.00 and $4.00. Next up in Billings action will be a midwest region contest at Sciota Downs on May 18. by John Manzi for the CKG Billings Harness Drivers Series

Yonkers, NY ---The North American Amateur Drivers Association has been busy of late and it probably will be for the next four months or so, not only offering weekly driving contests at Yonkers Raceway and Monticello Raceway but also hosting their European counterparts in International harness racing driving competitions. With the current NAADA trotting Series continuing and with a recently completed international driving competition against the Hungarian amateurs, tonight at Yonkers Raceway began the first of a two-track international driving competition, this time with the Spaniards from Palma de Mallorca. And what now seems to be the norm, the visiting amateurs competed on the betting card against NAADA in two races at the Hilltop oval and when the dust had settled the Spaniards humbled the USA squad winning both events. The first was captured by Pau Moll with a 44-1 shot Swift As A Shadow in 1:56 and returned a whopping $90.50; $31,00 and $11.40. Not to be outdone fellow Spaniard, Jaime Riera, hustled Showmeyourguns ($4.10) home first in 1:57.3. Two things of note in the two race competition tonight was that Pau Moll drove a pacer for the first time since they only race trotters in Europe. And Jaime Riera gained the drive behind Showmeyourguns because the horse that he was scheduled to drive was scratched and NAADA's vp Alan Schwartz graciously gave his mount to visiting Riera. In his contest Pau Moll left cautiously from the six-hole and was content to trail the field to the half and then consistently moved forward and in the final strides his Swift As Shadow collared Sammy The Bull N, driven by fellow countryman Francisco Ramis. NAADA's Joe Lee was third with Golden Gesture. "They told me I had the worst horse in the race but he went good for me and I was surprised when my horse was stronger than Francisco's at the finish," Moll said, then hesitated for a moment and emphatically added," I like driving the pacer." Swift As A Shadow is owned by Christopher Temming and trained by Michael Temming. Up behind the betting favorite in the second contest event Jaime Riera started from the pole position with Showmeyourguns and was content to allow NAADA's Monica Banca to cut swift early fractions :27.4 and :56.3 with Cresurrey before steadily closing a 10-length gap. By the time the field passed the third stanza Cresurrey's lead was three lengths and closed to two at the top of the stretch. In the lane Banca's trotter's strides weakened and with mild urging Riera got his charge up in time for a neck triumph. Third place went to Winning Princess in to NAADA's Jennifer Lappe. "Alan (Schwartz) gave me a good horse and he went a strong race," Riera said. "But I wasn't sure that we won it and when the judges posted my horse's number as the winner I felt real good." Showmeyourguns is owned and trained by Tom Milici. On Thursday, May 10, the final two races in the Spain vs USA Friendship Competition will be contested at Monticello Raceway. They'll be joined on the nine-race card by the ninth leg of the current NAADA Trotting Series. by John Manzi, for NAADA  

Right on the heels of hosting the Hungarian amateurs the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) is preparing for a visit from the Spanish harness racing amateur drivers beginning next week. "The Spaniards, from Palma de Mallorca, will be with us from Monday, May 7 through Sunday, May13 and we are preparing to entertain them with races, sightseeing and good food and we'll continue the great camaraderie started many years ago," noted Alicia Schwartz, NAADA's event planner. During the week races are planned at Yonkers Raceway, Monticello Raceway and Tioga Downs as well as a visit to "Trot Town USA" ,better known nowadays as Goshen, NY, where the visitors will tour both Historic Track and the Harness Racing Museum. Along the way the Spaniards will be treated to good food and wine and will spend a couple of nights enjoying "the Big Apple" (New York City) before returning home. During the competitions drivers for the visiting Spaniards will remain the same at each venue. They include club president Jaume Bassa Riera, Guillermo Busquets Liull, Francisco Liabres Ramis, Pau Roig Moll and Santi Roig Moll. However, at each event the hometowners will field a different team. Tentatively slated to drive for NAADA at Yonkers on Tuesday (May8) are Alan Schwartz, Joe Lee, Peter Kleinhans and Monica Banca. At Monticello on Thursday (May 10) the USA team will consist of Bob Davis, Tony Ciuffitelli, Paul Minore nd Alan Schwartz. The NAADA team at Tioga Downs on Saturday (May 12) is yet to be announced. "It's a lot of work putting these competitions together and we're always happy to host our foreign friends. Everyone knows that winning is not the primary reason for the international events... and that's a good thing because it seems that everybody wins against us,"Mrs. Schwartz added with a chuckle. Just a couple of weeks ago, at the end of April, amateur drivers from Hungary were here for an international competition and after the Spaniards contests are completed NAADA will entertain amateurs from Italy and France later this year. by John Manzi, for NAADA        

Despite the fact that NAADA is preparing to host a contingent of their counterparts from Spain next week the beat goes on for the harness racing members of the North American Amateur Drivers Association. Tonight at Yonkers Raceway, two short divisions in the eighth leg of the current NAADA trotting series went to post and when the judges declared them official both Alan Schwartz and Dr. John Kokinos each emerged victorious in their respective splits which went postward prior to the betting card getting underway. Schwartz had an eyeopening triumph with his own Ladys Big Stornont in a 1:57.3 clocking while Doctor John scored comfortably in 1:59.2 with Here Comes Numbers. Both were convincing winners. Schwartz started from the four-hole and settled in fourth position and was there until the field headed to the halfway point where he moved first-up. They trotted around Wygant Prince (Paul Minore) and when Ladys Big Stormont passed the three quarter pole they had a length lead which was opened to two lengths at the wire. Soul Train in rein to Joe Lee, rallied to be second with Fox Valley Steffen and Jennifer Lappe captured the show dough. "He went a monster trip tonight," a jubulent Schwartz said after the race. "He's a nice horse with a big motor and tonight's race was his best thus far this year." Doctor John is enjoying one of his best seasons in the sulky notching his third win in the current trotting series and his 5th in just nine seasonal starts. In his split Kokinos sent Here Comes Numbers to the lead from the three hole and it was catch me if you can and nobody could as Here Comes Numbers trotted home a two length winner over Tough Get Going, driven by NAADA president, Joe Faraldo. Far back in third was Bob Davis with The Royal Harry. "Again, I had a good horse and was merely little more than a passenger," said Kokinos. "I'm learning good lessons driving these classy old veterans. by John Manzi, for NAADA

MONTICELLO,NY - Less than a week after the North American Amateur Drivers Association completed their Friendship Challenge against the visiting Hungarians it was back to two trots in the seventh leg of the NAADA spring trotting series at Monticello Raceway. And when the judges declared the races official, Paul Minore and Alan Schwartz each reined a winner in their respective splits on the nine race harness racing betting card. Minore won the sixth race with Stayin Strong in 2:01.2 while Schwartz copped the ninth and final race of the afternoon with with Ladys Big Stormont in the identical time of 2:01.2. In his division Minore notched is 100th career victory with a come-from-behind triumph to score a head victory over a stubborn Fox Valley Steffen, driven by Jennifer Lappe. Tony Verruso garnered the show dough with Flirting Duezy, who was another half length back in third. "After starting from the seven-hole and sitting in sixth position some 10 lengths off the lead, I knew with the quick early fractions of :28.2 and :58.1 that they (the leaders) would be coming back to me late in the mile," Minore said after the race. "And that's just what happened. "When we headed for the three quarters I moved my trotter to the outside and we began picking up horses. Although I was still fifth on the final turn the front-end horses began to tire and I was able to get the lead just before the wire." It was the first time Minore drove Stayin Strong, who was win-less in 12 previous starts. The 5-year-old Muscles Yankee gelding is owned by Adam Friedland and trained by Craig Mosher. He paid $15.80; $6.10 and $4.20 across the board. In the second split -race nine- Minore was up behind Wygant Prince who was 2:00.3 winner in his last start but a third place finish was all the veteran gelding could muster in an action packed event dotted with breaking horses. When the starter said "go" Schwartz hustled his charge to the lead with Monica Banca and Brandos Muscle Man on the limb challenging. As the two approached the first stanza Schwartz grabbed leather and allowed Banca to take command and then immediately retook the lead. The two trotters raced one-two past the half after Eyore Hanover (David Glasser) Tim Lizzi (Bob Davis) and Here Comes Numbers (Jennifer Lappe) all went off-stride. As the leaders headed into the final turn Tony Verruso, who was saving all the ground while traveling along the pylons with Gifted Way, decided to move for the lead on the turn but unfortunately his charge went off-stride which undoubtedly cost them the race. Although the aforementioned happened behind Schwartz who was cutting the mile, he remained undeterred and kept urging his trotter all the way to the wire. At the finish, Ladys Big Stormont was one-length winner over Brandos Muscle Man. And as stated earlier Wygant Prince took home he show dough. "After the race I was told that I had a lucky break when Gifted Way went off-stride, and maybe I did. But when it was all over my horse got the biggest share of the purse," Schwartz related. :He's (my horse) not one to ever count out. After all, he won 12 races last season and now has three wins already this year." The betting crowd was certainly in Schwartz's corner as they sent Ladys Big Stormont off as the odds-on favorite in the race. He is owned and trained by his driver and paid just $3.30 for win. On Friday, May 3 the eighth leg of the NAADA series will again be contested at Yonkers Raceway by John Manzi for NAADA

To say that Monday (April 13) was a horrible day for harness racing at Monticello Raceway would be a gross understatement. With the falling rain, the near freezing temperatures, and the muddy race track, it was a tough day for all the participants. And it just so happened that was the first day of the Hungary vs. USA international driving competition with contests to follow at Yonkers Raceway on Tuesday and at Saratoga Raceway on Thursday. But despite the adverse conditions all went well with both Hungary and the USA each winning a race. With the USA team being complimented with members of the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) the first event saw NAADA's Paul Minore set sail from post three with 16-1 shot, Lightning Madison, and not only easily grab the front-end but in the process go wire to wire making every pole a winning one en route to a four length triumph over Sureimalynn, handled by Hungary's, Kriztian Fazekas. And the final time of 2:08.2 was indicative of the track condition.The USA's Monica Banca took home the show dough with Jaybeebullville. "I got to the lead real easily so I just kept going on and not looking for cover," Minore related in the paddock after the race was completed. "In spite of the inclement weather it was fun. Of course, winning is always fun." Sent off at odds of 16-1 Lightning Madison paid $34.00; $7.20; and $8.30 across the board. The 11-year-old Pro Bono Best mare is owned by Ruth Ingham and trained by Vernon James. In conversation after the race Minore told how he has been fortunate when racing against European amateurs abroad. " I have been lucky to win three times in Europe on different occasions," he said. "I won last September against the Hungarians in Budapeste and in previous years I won a race at Vienna, Austria and at Solvalla in Stockholm, Sweden." Minore, a retired physical education teacher and high school coach, is proud of having world champion and Olympic multi-Gold Medal winner, Carl Lewis, begin his fabulous career under his tutelage. The second USA v Hungary contest was won by Andrea Fazekas who showed real talent in keeping her pacer,Rosie Rozzo, alive in the final quarter after being collared by Diamondsforember ( Alan Schwartz-USA) on the final turn and then go on to a length triumph in 2:04 over her challenger. Monica Banca, also representing the home team, finished third again, this time with Check My Pulse. In the post race interview Ms Fazekas was assisted by her hubby and professional driver Tamas Keleman who is fluent in English. Through Tamas, Andrea related that she listened to instructions given to her prior to the race where she was told to go to the lead. Then in her broken English she said she felt the nose of a horse that was breathing on her back on the final turn but concentrated on Alan Schwartz who was challenging with Diamondsforember. However in the deep stretch Ms Fazekas and Rosie Rozzo went on to a one length triumph. Sent off as the favorite in the race the winner paid $3.90; $3.00 and $2.30. The Yankee Cruise 5-year-old mare is owned and trained by Jody Weidman. Two things of note in the final USA-Hungary competition today are that Ms Fazekas was challenged, but to avail, by her mother, Andrea Nagyvary, who finished sixth in the race with Fly To The Angels. And after the last race in the competition at Saratoga on Thursday Andrea Fazekas and her hubby will celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary with a trip to the Dominican Republic. The USA-Hungary competition moves to Yonkers Raceway tomorrow night with two races on the betting card. The Hungarian team will remain the same but driving there for the NAADA team will be Joe Faraldo, Jennifer Lappe, Alan Schwartz and Joe Lee. by John Manzi for NAADA

The North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) will host a contingent of their harness racing counterparts from Hungary in an international Friendship Competition beginning in mid-April. It will be the first of four European amateur organizations that NAADA will host this season. Others who will be hosted by the Americans include include amateur drivers from Spain, Italy and France...... "We (NAADA) raced against our Hungarian friends last year and in 2004 we hosted them in America. However, two years ago when Hungary was the site of the World Cup of Amateur Racing the USA made its best showing in the prestigious competition when Hannah Miller, after leading all the way, was out-pointed in the final race and was relegated to second place finish in the 13-country competition of world class amateurs," noted NAADA president, Joe Faraldo. The visiting Hungarians are slated to arrive in the States on Sunday, April 15 with competitions set at three different US racetracks during the upcoming week. On Monday, April 16 two races are slated at Monticello Raceway and the following day one, maybe two contests, at Yonkers Raceway. The final events of the Friendship Competition will be at Saratoga Raceway on Thursday, April 19. The Hungarians set to compete at the Mighty M this coming Monday (April 16), and throughout the entire competition, include: Andrea Fazekas, Viktoria Kelemen, Ferenc Leanyfalvi, Krisztian Takacs, Andrea Nagyvary, and Tamas Tanczer. However, the hometown Americans will have a different team at each of the three venues. Driving for the USA at Monticello will be Alan Schwartz,Tony Cuiffetelli, Paul Minore and Monica Banca. At Yonkers Raceway the US team will consist of Joe Faraldo, Alan Schwartz, Jennifer Lappe and Joe Lee. The NAADA team at Saratoga Raceway is yet to be finalized On Tuesday(April 17) the visitors will be treated to a tour of the Intrepid Aircraft Museum and a walk through Times Square along with a luncheon sponsored by NAADA member Peter Kleinhans. In the evening the Hungarian and American drivers will battle in a race, or two, at Yonkers Raceway Then on Wednesday (April 18) it'll be off to Trot-Town USA with a visit to the Mark Ford Training Center in the morning and after a fine luncheon the visitors will be afforded a tour of Goshen Historic Track and the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame. On Thursday (April 19) the international rivals will be vanned to Saratoga for a visit of the Historic City of Saratoga Springs before a competition at Saratoga Raceway. On Friday the visitors will return home. by John Manzi for NAADA  

Doctor John the Medicine Man strikes again.... And as in his first driving victory in the NAADA Trotting Series two weeks ago the veterinarian - harness racing horseman and his trusty charge, Here Comes Numbers, were back in the winners circle at Yonkers Raceway after copping the fourth leg of the series for amateur drivers. Two weeks ago Kokinos set sails with his veteran trotter at the Hilltop oval and made every pole a winning one en route to a 1:59.3 triumph. Using similar tactics again tonight the good doctor sent Here Comes Numbers again to the lead and allowed the veteran trotter to do his thing and the 10 year old altered son of Here Comes Herbie proved once again too much for his competition winning by a solid length in a time of 1:59.1 over Traverse Seelster, driven by Tony Ciuffetelli. The victory tonight was two-fifths of a second faster than the horse's triumph on March 22nd ,also at Yonkers Raceway. Last weeks winner in this NAADA Series, Wygant Prince, was driven to a third place finish by Paul Minore, a retired high school track coach whose most prominent student was the Olympic champion, Carl Lewis. But once again tonight belonged to Doctor John who notched his 28th career driving victory. "It's not that hard when you have the best horse in the field," Kokinos said. "You just go down the road, which I did for the second consecutive time with 'Numbers'". The winning horse is co-owned by Patrick Laiso and Jennifer Lappe and trained by Ms Lappe. The non-wagering event went for a purse of $6000 and was presented prior to the betting card getting underway. Next Thursday the NAADA Series returns for another leg at Monticello Raceway. by John Manzi for NAADA    

Over the years the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) has donated to worthy charities and this year will be no exception. "NAADA members have had the pleasure of being able to donate in excess of $100,000 to worthy charities over the many years of our existence and even as the amateur racing season gets underway this season we've already made donations of $500 to both the Make A Wish Foundation and to New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program," noted NAADA president Joe Faraldo who additionally donated to each charity. Those donations were made in late March during participation in the amateur driving series sponsored by the Florida Amateur Club at Pompano Park. According to Faraldo over $13,500 was raised during the Florida Amateur Club's racing series. "Hats off to Dein Spriggs, President of the Florida Amateur Club and its membership for organizing such a worthwhile event. An event that saw David MIller and Tim Tetrick donate their time and talent as leaders of the teams for their respective charities to wow the crowd with their unquestionable talents. The long time efforts by the Florida Club have become the benchmark for other parts of the industry to emulate, both amateur and pro.," Faraldo added. Each year NAADA makes its own substantial donations to charities like Juvenile Diabetes and the Susan B Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, just to mention a few. Monies raised for the donations come from membership and starting fees paid by the clubs participating drivers. Those monies also continue to be used to foster international competitions including organizing World Cup competitions on US soil. Over the seasons NAADA hosts, and is hosted by, various European amateur organizations. Already this year NAADA is preparing to host their counterparts from Hungary in mid-April, Spain in early May, Italy in mid-August and France in mid- October. "It's a ton of work", said Faraldo, "but worth all the effort benefitting the charities , while also supplying a predicate for nurturing good will amongst nations involved in harness racing worldwide".   John Manzi

On an extremely foggy afternoon with intermittent rain falling in New York's southern Catskill Mountains harness racing driver Paul Minore sat a two-hole trip then rallied his old warhorse, Wygant Prince, to a neck victory in the third leg of the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA) trot at Monticello Raceway on Thursday March 29. After starting from the pole position Minore parked Jennifer Lappe's Here Come Numbers around the first turn then allowed the 10-year-old gelding to take command as the field trotted by the first panel in :29. "I didn't want Here Comes Numbers to take command with ease so I parked him a ways and then let Jennifer have the lead," Minore related in the paddock after the race was over. "I figured I'd get a good two-hole trip behind her because her trotter was the betting favorite and had raced well in his recent starts." Once on top Lappe showed the way by the half in :59.2 with Wygant Prince tucked in tightly behind her trotter. As the seven-horse passed the third stanza in 1:30.1 Here Comes Numbers opened up daylight and he was 2-1/2 lengths in front as they headed for paydirt. "She (Ms Lappe) got away a bit on the final turn but once we straightened for home my horse began to grind away at the leader and in the final strides we got up for a neck victory in 2:00.3. Third place went to Connie Keeper , driven by Tony Verruso. The race winner, an 11 year-old altered son of SJ's Photo, notched his third seasonal victory and the 34th of his illustrious career and leaves him just $93 short of $400,000 in lifetime earnings. He is owned by Minore and trained by Taylor Gower. As for Minore it was his 94th career driving victory in the USA and when one counts Minore's three triumphs in races contested in Europe he now needs just three more for 100 lifetime victories. The NAADA trotting series continues next Thursday at Yonkers Raceway. by John Manzi, for NAADA

The Doctor in... at least he was on Thursday at Yonkers Raceway. On that cool crisp March 22nd evening Dr Kokinos took no prisoners when he sent Here Comes Numbers down the road and made every pole a winning one en route to a solid three- length harness racing victory in the second leg of the NAADA Trotting Series at Yonkers Raceway which was presented before the betting card got underway. Second place went to Tough Get Going driven by Joe Faraldo. Dave Yarock took home the show dough with Hidden Identity who finished some 10 lengths off the winner.. Kokinos and Here Come Numbers took charge when the gate sprung and they had command as they passed by the first stanza in a swift :28.4. Once on top Kokinos kept the pedal to the metal as Here Comes Numbers proved to be too much for his competition and they cruised to an easy 1:59.3 victory. According to Faraldo, who is the president of the North American Amateur Drivers Association (NAADA), he asked Kokinos why he went such a stiff first quarter to which Faraldo said Kokino replied "once I got him in high gear there was no way I'd be able to take him back. And besides, he was comfortable and full of trot". In the NAADA series last week at Monticello Raceway Tony Ciuffetelli's Better To Be Lucky was victorious and Monica Banca's Master Of Excuses was close second but tonight at the Hilltop oval both trotters made breaks during the mile and finished fifth and sixth respectively. Here Comes Numbers, a 10-year-old altered son of Here Comes Herbie, notched his second seasonal triumph and his 30th of his racing career where he massed purses in excess of $352,000. He is currently owned by Patrick Laiso and Jennifer Lappe nd trained by Lappe. The 10-race NAADA series continues next Thursday at Monticello Raceway. by John Manzi for NAADA

1 to 16 of 261
1 2 3 4 5 Next »