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Today’s Ulf Thoresen Grand International (purse to winner 250,000Nok, 2100 meters autostart, 10 starters) at Jarlsberg, Travbane in Norway, went to the impressive Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers-Moorea-Baccarat du Pont) timed in 1.11.9kr and reined by Vidar Hop. The Frode Hamre trainee is owned in France by J.M. Rancoule and was developed by J.M. Bazire, and the win was his third in 2020 and 23 in his 74 race career. His earnings are now 9.966,344Nok. He was off at 4.35/1 odds. Ble du Gers made a three wide rush to the lead with about 400 meters remaining and it was no contest thereafter. Varenne FAS (5m Varenne-Miss Muscle FAS-Muscles Yankee) followed the winner with Tom Erik Solberg aboard for trainer Jerry Riordan. Third home was Floris Baldwin (8g Passing Renka-Tanja de Bruin-Dante Buitenzorg) with Kristian Malmin the pilot. Ferrari BR and Lionel finished fourth and fifth. Ble du Gers   Replay -https://www.rikstoto.no/Videoarkiv/Siste?type=RaceVideo&play=JA_NR_2020-07-05%239 The winner’s pedigree follows.   Earlier in the day the Stayerlopp (100,000Nok to the winner, 3100 meters voltstart, 15 starters) was won by Etna Sisu (6f From Above-Swift Lady Cash-Cash Hall) with Anders Andersen driving. Noble Superb was second despite a 60 meter handicap. Etna Sisu Also, the Anders Jahres (100,000Nor first money, 2100 meters autostart) was on the card and Kick Off Classic (7m Quite Easy-Kicking Promessa-Chergon) scored for Kristian Malmin. Kickoff Classic Jarlsberg Travbane, Maharajah, ATG files/photos by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

June 13, 2020 - The Saturday harness racing card at Bjerke on Grand Prix Day included many interesting races. The Energima Trot was one of these (purse to winner 50,000Nkr, 1609 meters autostart, 12 starters) and 14/1 Tayni Destrier (5g Un Mec d’Heripre-Eva Leba Palema-Deliberate Speed) scored in 1.11.0kr (mile rate 1:54.2). Per Ivar Bendiksen was the pilot as he won for the seventh time in only 14 career starts. The victory raised his life earnings to 183,000Nkr. Shapes (4g Classic Photo) was second for Bjorn Goop and Staro On The Rocks (3m Conway Hall) was third for trainer/driver Frode Hamre/ Teyno Destrier The Gjensidge Finale (purse to winner 100,000Nkr, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) produced and exciting score for Gogo Hall (5m Googoo Gaagaa-Valentine Queen-Andover Hall) clocked in 1.12.2kr and off at 6.2/1 odds. Adrian Solberg Akselsen teamed this Frode Hamre trainee that won for the third time in eight 2020 starts. Calina (6f Archipelago-Caltina Hall-Banker Hall) was second for trainer/driver Frode Hamre and Kicking Classic (8m Quite Easy) was home third. Googoo Gaagaa is proving to be an exciting stallion in Scandanavian trotting. Gogo Hall The always important Kingsrod Tradings Monte (purse to winner 50,000Nkr, 1609 meters autostart) also sparked my interest. This year it was an easy score for 1.8/1 favorite Innovation Love (5g Love You-Adena Boko-Pearsall Hanover) in rein to jockey Michelle Monster for trainer Paul Hagoort. Innovation Love won for the first time in four outings this year. Ready Eddie (10g From Above) and Lighthouse West (8g Offshore Dream) were second and third. Finishing fifth was Ja El Tomcat (11m Chocolatier), a half brother to the USA free for all trotter JL Cruze.  Innovation Love Innovation Love was timed in 1.11.8kr (mile time 1:55.5), well off the 2012 stake record of 1.10.9kr set by Prince de Montfort.   Thomas H. Hicks    

Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers-Moorea-Baccarat du Pont), off at 10/1 odds, rallied off a fast pace to reel in the harness racing leaders to win the Tipster Oslo Grand Prix (purse to winner 350,000Nkr, 2100 meters autostart, eight starters) timed in a lightning quick 1.10.0kr (actual time 2:27.0), a new stake record (Nuncio established the previous 1.10.5kr record in 2016). Owned in France by Ecurie J.M. Rancoule (trained there by Jean Michel Bazire) he was handled today by Per Oleg Midtfjeld and trained by Frode Hamre. Ble du Gers won for the 22nd time in his 72 race career now for 9,500,188Nkr. He was away third and gapped off an early match race between Elian Web and last year’s winner Vitruvio (6m Adrian Chip-Tigre OM-Zebu) as their pilots Jorma Kontio and Bjorn Goop engaged in a death match. Vitruvio held on for a distant third at 2.7/1. Second was the rallying Tsunami Diamant (6m Gustav Diamant-Glide Chip-Yankee Glide) off at 22.5/1 and reined by Jorgen Sjunnesson for trainer Paul Hagoort. Elian Web was unplaced at 3.4/1 odds. Ble du Gers                                                                                  - Per Oleg Midtfjeld ATG, Bjerke, Maharajah files/photos Thomas H. Hicks  

Harness racing trainer Jerry Riordan enjoyed quite a day in Norway. First in the Finntacks Europamatch (purse to winner 150,000Nkr, 1609 meters autostart, eight starters), the former Orsi Mangelli winner Zarenne FAS (5m Varenne-Miss Muscle Fas-Muscles Yankee) scored in 1.09.8kr (mile 1:52.3) for driver Tom Erik Solberg, owner Francesco Gragnaniello and of course trainer Riordan. Zarenne FAS was off at 2.1/1 odds as he won for the first time in five 2020 starts. His life earnings are now 4,430,317Nkr from nine wins in 36 appearances. Zarenne FAS lowered the previous stake record established in 2018 by Generaal Bianco at 1.11.8kr. Riordan commented post race that he does well in Norway – must be the non-whip rule. M.S. Triple J. (5m Cantab Hall-Maritas Victory-Valley Victory) was second for Svein Ove Wassberg and third went to Max Brady (5m Cantab Hall-Hope Brady-Ganymede) for Magnus Tein Gundersen.   Zarenne FAS Jerry Riordan In the Avarn Securitys Stayerlop (purse to winner 100,000Nkr, 3140 meters voltstart distance handicap, 15 starters) Riordan was again victorious as his new trainee Tessy d’Ete (8f Ganymede-Love Me Tender-Supergill) rallied from far back off her 40 meter handicap to score in 1.13.1kr at 3/1 odds. Tom Erik Solberg was again at the lines as Tessy took her second 2020 win in seven outings. This, her 16th career win in 66 starts, advanced her life earnings to 5,998,240Nkr. As Riordan commented, she was 12th with 300 meters to go – the late rally was sensational. Scuderia Eurocolor Srl owns this fine mare. Etenclin (6m Jag de Bellouet) was second for Robin Bakker and trainer Paul Hagoort, this one also handicapped 40 meters. Unoicsdue Gnafa (7m Goetmals Wood) was third for reinsman Lars Anvar Kolle. Tessy d’Ete Early on today’s card was the Support Justice (purse to winner 200,000Nkr, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) that saw Supercute (3f Muscle Hill-Bold and Fresh-SJs Caviar) score in 1.15.0kr with Bjorn Goop at the lines for trainer Ola Samuelsson and owner SRF Stable. This was her second career victory in five starts for the daughter of Hambletonian Oaks winner Bold and Fresh, a Doug Miller trainee in the USA. Second today was L.A.’s I Feel Good (3m Andover Hall-Pine Princess L-Pine Chip) with Jomar Blekkan up. Third home was Thai Targaryan (3m Muscle Hill-Bether Always-Conway Hall) with Asbjern Tengsareid up. Supercute ATG, Bjerke, Maharajah files/photos Thomas H. Hicks

Italy’s Vitruvio (5m Adrian Chip-Tigre OM-Zebu) took today’s Oslo Grand Prix (purse 2,830,000Nokr, 2100 meters autostart, nine starters after Looking Superb was scratched.   Jorma Kontio teamed the winner to a rallying score for harnes racing trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro, Vitruvio’s third 2019 win in four starts and 16th in his career that spans 36 appearances.   His life earnings are now 9,987,837Nokr. Bahia Quesnot was a game second for trainer/driver Junior Guelpa after racing first over and putting away the breaking pacesetter Ringostarr Treb at the end of the final bend.   Valokaja Hindo rallied for third with Christophe Martens teaming for trainer Jean-Michel Bazire. Former Hambletonian winner Perfect Spirit was also a miscue dq for his break into the first turn.   Vitruvio                                 --Bjerke Travbane, ATG, Rikstoto files/photos   Race time was 1.11.6kr for the 7.1/1 odds winner. The undercard action at Bjerke was excellent.   The 555,000Nokr total purse Energima Cup Final went to 1.11.3kr timed Gigant Invalley (Gigant Neo) with Gunnar Austevoll up. This one was third in his elimination. The two elimination winners were Une Etoile Gar (Varenne) clocked in 1.11.2kr and Donatomite (Donato Hanover-Malvictorian) in 1.12kr.   The Finn Tack Europamatch (565,000Nokr purse, 2100 meters autostart) went to 1.12.9kr timed Heart of Steel (Cantab Hall) with Peter Untersteiner up. Gina Shermer (Varenne) took the Akershus Tracktors for Mares with a 410,000Nokr purse, clocked in 1.11.8kr over the 1609 meters autostart course.   The YesBox Trot (255,000Nokr purse, 1609 meters autostart) saw Reigning Moni (Donato Hanover) score in 1.11.6kr with Orjan Kihlstrom driving for trainer Daniel Reden.   Early in the program was the Kingsrod Trading Monte (195,000Nokr purse, 1609 meters autostart) and Be Mine de Houelle (Scipion du Goutier) scored for jockey Maria Bacsich timed in 1.11.6kr. Franck Leblanc trains this one that was recently third in Solvalla’s Monte Elite, a race she won in 2018.     Thomas H. Hicks

Perfect Spirit, the 2017 Hambletonian winner, will have his first race in an International open race in the Oslo Grand Prix at Bjerke Sunday (June 9) afternoon. After his entrance at the Swedish trotting scene, last year Perfect Spirit was campaigned against other 4-year old trotters, but this year his trainer, Daniel Redén, has matched him against elder trotters. Perfect Spirit won his first two races this year – best timed in 1.52.4 – but third time out he made a break and was disqualified. In the Oslo Grand Prix, Perfect Spirit with regular driver Ôrjan Kihlström, will be among the favorites to win the event which has a purse of $175,000. Perfect Spirit will leave from post position two in the 1-5-16 mile event. Here are the post positions: 1. Slide So Easy (DK) – sired by Quite Easy (U.S.) 2. Perfect Spirit (US) – sired by Andover Hall (U.S.) 3. Ringostarr Treb (IT) – sired by Classic Photo (U.S.) 4. Vitruvio (IT) – sired by Adrian Chip (U.S.) 5. Bahia Quesnot (FR) sired by Scipion du Goutier (FR) 6. Gretzky BR (NO) – sired by Quite Easy (U.S.) 7. Valokaja Hindø (DK) – sired by Great Challenger (U.S.) 8. Uza Josselyn (DK) – sired by Love You (FR) 9. Nadal Broline (SE) -sired by Yankee Glide (U.S.) 10. Looking Superb (NO) – Scratched by Karsten Bønsdorf, USTA Senior Newsroom Correspondent

An excellent V75 card was the menu Saturday at Bjerke (NO) included the Big Noon (Gold division, 200,000 NOkr to the winner, 2100 meters autostart). The 1.9/1 Global Trustworthy (5m Muscle Hill-Trophy Stand-Garland Lobell) scored for driver Jorma Kontio and trainer Timo Nurmos. Race time was 1.11.7kr as the winner bested internationally respected and 2.3/1 Lionel (8m Look de Star-Aurora Sign-Smok’n Lantern) that owner Goran Antonsen drove for trainer Daniel Reden. The 57.8/1 Deep Sea Dream (10g Offshore Dream-Nightlight-Super News) was third for Tom Erik Solberg. Probo OK was seventh and Donatomite and Spitcam Jubb were dq’s. On the undercard was the V7 Silver Flaata Elendom As (purse to the winner 150,000Nokr, 2100 meters autostart) with that victory to The Last Ticket (7m Thai Tanic-One Way Ticket-Diamond Way) handled by Dag-Sveinung Dalen. Race time was 1.12.5kr. Vasterbo Exact (7g Racer Bourbon) was second for Thomas Uhrberg and third went to Gigant Invalley (8m Gigant Neo-Fachi-JR Broline). The four year olds mares contested the Axel Jensens Minelop (150,000NOkr to the winner, 2100 meters autostart) with the 1.13.3kr timed victory earned by Denmark’s 3.1/1 Carna Sensei (4f Prodigious-Line Sensei-Mr. Flirt) with Thomas Uhrberg aboard for trainer Steen Juel. The 6.5/1 Normandie Royal (4f Orlando Vici-Lamitech Monique-Sugarcane Hanover) took second for trainer/driver Frode Hamre, and third was 4.1/1 Tropicana As (4f Manofmanymissions-Tropical Breeze As-Striking Sahbra) that was steered by Carl Johan Jepsopn for trainer Jerry Riordan. The race record for this stake was set in 2016 by the Jerry Riordan trained and Christoffer Eriksson reined Treasure Kronos at 1.11.7kr. The day’s featured event was the Axel Jensens Minnelop (300,000NIOkr to the winner, 1609 meters autostart, ten starters), a race that began in 1944 and has been raced annually ever since exceot for 1994 and 1996. The stake record was set in 2015 by Buzz Mearas at 1.11.5kr with Adrian Kolgjini up. Ferrari BR won last year’s edition in 1.11kr for Per Oleg Midtfjeld. This year the winner was 3/1 Vainqueur RP (4m Infinitif-Global Affair-Broadway Hall) with Ulf Ohlsson up for trainer Frode Hamre. He defeated 5.3/1 Enterprise (4m Chapter Seven-Shes Gone Again-SJs Caviar) that was piloted by Carl Johan Jepson for Courant AB and trainer Stefan Melander. 6.1/1 Giveitgasandgo (4g Yabkee Glide-Mazda Hanover-Andiver Hall) was third for driver Kevin Oscarsson and trainer Hamre. 13/1 Snowstorn Hanover finished fourth. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

The 2.3/1 Diamanten (5m Adrian Chip-Iata Kill-Ata Star L) easily took today’s Gr. I Ulf Thoresens Grand International at Jarlsberg, Norway with Erik Adielsson aboard for trainer Stig H. Johansson and owner Lars Otten Froode. Race time was 1.11kr over 2100 meters autostart with 10 contestants vying for the 157,388 euro total purse. The 26/1 Trendy OK (6f Varenne-Annette Hanover-Sierra Kosmos) closed rapidly for second handled by trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro. 17/1 Rajesh Face (5m Raja Mirchi-Nippy Girl-Ginger Somolli) was third for Adrian Kolgjini and trainer Lutfi Kolgjini. 28/1 Coquin Bebe and 3/1 Twister Bi ended fourth and fifth respectively, the latter after a miscue at the start. The Jarlsberg undercard was an interesting one showing high speed and vibrant pedigrees. Uni Lest (5m Varenne-Superiors Sun) took the Prix Onyx Noir (purse 20,440 euro, 3100 meters, 15 starters) at 6.6/1 odds and timed in 1.15.6kr. This winner, owned by Stall Festa di Trotto, is a brother to international performer Pascia’Lest. Vincent (4m Classic Photo-Olga LP) at 9/1 took the Prix Grenat (13,798 euro total purse, 1609 meters autostart, 12 starters) clocked in 1.11.7kr. Eric Hoitomt teamed the winner that defeated a third finishing favorite (1/2 odds) Forever Peace (5m Muscle Hill-Peaceful Way). Second was MS Triple J (3m Cantab Hall-Marita’s Victory-Valley Victory), his dam a Hambletonian Oaks winner, US$160,000 yearling and dam of Quite Easy (winner of Champlain and International Stallion Stake), From Above and Stick Man Moe from nine foals. Gina Schermer (5f Varenne-Ellymay) was the 1.10.9kr timed winner of the Prix Malachite (total purse 20,440 euro, 1609 meters autostart, 12 starters) with Rick Ebbinge driving for trainer J.W. Engwerda. Laser Tile (5g Cantab Hall-Vicky Diablo) was the 1.12kr winner of the Prix Tourmaline (16,383 euro total purse, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) as the 2/1 favorite. The day’s speed monster was in the Prix Oeil de Tigre (purse 21,054 euro, 1609 meters autostart, 12 starters) with victory to 7/2 odds Waffle Cone (4f Muscle Hill-Sugar Cone) timed in 1.09.8kr (1:52.3) for Erik Adielsson, driving for trainer Frode Hamre. Giant Invalley and Shadow Gar trailed the winner home. The Jarlsberg undercard’s top event was the Prix Turquoise (40,880 euro total purse, 2100 meters autostart, 10 starters) with victory to 2/1 Coktail Fortuna (9g Love You-Dalloah No-Diamond Way) handled by trainer Robert Bergh.10/1 Ubertino Grif (5m Libeccio Grif-Nebraska Grif-Varenne) was second for trainer/driver Alessandro Gocciadoro with third to 41.1 Photo Lavec (6m SJs Photo-Joyful Lavec-Enjoy Lavec) with Tom Erik Solberg driving. Trinity Lux was scratched. Race time was 1.12.4kr. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink      

July 7, 2017 - Friday’s Grand Prix Champion Jarlsberg was raced in two eliminations and a final for Norway’s best harness racing four year-old trotters. The eliminations and final were raced over 1609 meters autostart (one mile) with the elims carrying a purse of 65,000NOk (30,000NOk to the winner. Purse for the final was 600,000NOk (300,000NOk to the winner). In the final 3.8/1 Phantasm SOA (4m Cromwell-Uiver H-Uxer LM), off at 3.8/1 second choice, raced third over for driver Asbjorn Tengsareid before starting a three wide move midway on the backside of the second lap. In the lane the winner surged forward to score by a length timed in a record 1.09.8kr (1:52.31 mile rate). Phantasm finished second in elim one to 1.10.5kr timed Cokstile (4m Quite Easy-Joystile-Coktail Jet) driven by Kars Anvar Kolle, the horse that was second, as the 2/1 favorite, in the final. Shotproof (4m Yankee Glide-Shadowshot-Malabar Man) was third in the final for driver Flemming Jensen, after winning elim two clocked in 1.11.5kr. In elim one Forever Peace (4m Muscle Hill-Peaceful Way-Angus Hall) finished third for Erlend Rennesvik. In elim two Always On Time (4m Revenue-Pimafarina-Windsongs Legacy) was second and third went to Chief Orlando (4m Orlando Vici-Muito Bonita-Felix Santana) driven by Frode Hamre that was off as 2.6/1 favorite. Interestingly, the winning sire (Cromwell) has NY roots, being by Credit Winner-Skeptical Miss-Sir Taurus-Gilina-Speedy Somolli). This 2002 foal won the Zweig Memorial at age three, was exported and finished third in the Orsi Mangelli before competing in upper classes in Europe through age seven earning about US$500,000. He was a sharp individual with a slick gait that Phantasm reminds me of. Thomas H. Hicks

July 9, 2017 - Today’s Jarlsberg feature event was the Gr. I Ulf Thoresen Grand International (2100 meters autostart, 750,000NOk to the winner). Twister Bi (5m Varenne-Lorraine Bi) was placed directly on the lead from post two by driver Christoffer Eriksson, rated comfortably, and drew off with 500 meters remaining to secure a five length victory for trainer Jerry Riordan, timed in 1.10.4kr. Twister Bi recorded his fourth win in eight 2017 starts, now for 4,907,005NOk earned in a successful and emerging career. An elated Riordan stated on post race interview that his charge is a happy horse that was just rolling along in the final 400. Oasis Bi (9m Toss Out-Up Front JM) sat the pocket for driver Erik Adielsson but lost the second spot to fast closing Lionel (7m Look de Star-Aurora Sign) and driver/owner Goran Antonsen for trainer Daniel Reden. The secondary feature this day was the Anders Jahres (2100 meters autostart, 200,000SEK to the winner) and the 1.11.2kr timed winner was Djali Boko (7m Ready Cash-Lucky Lavec) that moved decisively in the final bend and jetted off to an easy score for reinsman Adrian Kolgjini and trainer Lutfi Kolgjini. Nappa Scar (5m Scarlet Knight-Butterfly Player) was the second horse home for trainer/driver Per Lennartson. Bjorn Goop piloted the Jerry Riordan trainee Tango Negro (5m Infinitif-Lisetta Real) to a third place finish. Also on the undercard was the Felleokjopets (2100 meters autostart, 75,000NOk to winner) with victory going to Ferrari BR (4m Muscles Yankee-Bauxite) timed in 1.13.2kr for trainer/driver Per Oleg Midtfjeld, who campaigned Cromwell (sire of Phantasm SOA) throughout most of his European racing career. Second in this event was the Jerry Riordan trainee Umberto Axe (4m Love You-Ira Furiosa Spin) driven by Tom Eric Solberg. Defy Anything (5f Cantab Hall-Flirtin Victory) took third for driver Erik Adielsson and trainer Flemming Jensen. Thomas H. Hicks

June 11, 2017, Bjerke -   Italy’s Twister Bi (5m Varenne-Lorraine Bi-Lemon Dra) rallied off cover three wide in the final bend for driver Christoffer Eriksson and ran down then leading Lionel (7m Look de Star-Aurora Sign-Smok’n Lantern) and owner/driver Goran Antonsen to win the Gr I UET Masters Series VG Oslo Grand Prix at Bjerke. Raced in the fog and rain the Jerry Riordan trainee, owned by Pasuquale Ciccarelli, earned 1.5NOK million for the win, his 19th in 45 career starts. Total purse was 2,770,000NOK. Timed in 1.12.6kr the winner bested a game Lionel, trained by Daniel Reden, that raced in the death seat through much of the 2100 meter autostart event, Third was Aubrion du Gers (7g Memphis du Rib-J’Arrive du Gers-Baccarat du Pont) with Joseph Verbeeck catch-driving for trainer Jean-Michel Bazire. Takethem and DD’s Hitman ended fourth and fifth. Photos below – finish, stretch drive, happy trainer and driver. Pacesetter Dante Boko and well-regarded Volstead, BBS Sugarlight, Your Highness and Cruzado Dela Noche were among the also-rans today. Winning trainer Jerry Riordan, always a great post-race interview, commented that his horse raced today for the first time in an American sulky and with pull out ear-plugs, and like Varenne, is always a tough competitor, who can beat anybody with a good trip. Today he got that good trip. The undercard included the Energima Cup (final with 300,000NOK to the winner and 100,000NOK for winners of the two eliminations) with the elims and final raced over 1609 meters autostart. The final, pictured below, went to Italy’s Turno di Assiurra (5m Love You-Foga di Aziurra-Lemon Dra) in rein to Orjan Kihlstrom for trainer Erik Bondo, and timed in 1.11.5kr. He won his elimination timed in 1.11.8kr in a dead-heat with Thai Broadway (8m Broadway Hall-Isabella Knick-Tap In) reined by trainer Bjorn Goop. Thai Broadway was second in the final.  The other elim was won by Donatomite (5g Donato Hanover-Malvictorian-Malabar Man) for trainer/drive Frode Hamre timed in 1.10.9kr with victory over Victory Bonsai (6m Kadabra-Victory Bouquet-Balanced Image) with Mika Forss driving the Heikki Korhonen trainee. Bonsai was third in the final.  Canari Match and Phantasm SOA Win at Bjerke June 11, 2017 - Today’s Oslo Grand Prix day of racing showcased top flight three, four and five year-old trotters plus open class mares. Starting in reverse order with the Finn Tack Europamatch (purse to winner 300,000NOK, 2100 meters autostart) for the five year-olds, the winner was 1.12.9kr clocked Canari Match (5m Extreme Aunou-Ruelle d’Ostal-Joe l’Amoroso) for Orjan Kihlstrom. Daniel Reden trains this one. Second was the Jerry Riordan trainee Tango Negro (5m Infinitif-Lisetta Real-Lemon Dra), with third to the mare Trendy OK (5f Varenne-Annette Hanover-Sierra Kosmos) handled by Alessandro Gocciadoro. She was one of only two females in this event. French Laundry was fourth in the nine horse field. The four year-olds contested the Gjensidige (purse to winner 200,000NOK, 1609 meters autostart) and that fine group was vanquished by Phantasm SOA (4m Cromwell-Uiver H-Uxer LB) driven by Bjorn Goop for trainer Olivier Raffin. This Norway  bred colt now has two 2017 wins in three outings and nine career victories in 16 starts. Off at 5/2 odds, Phantasm SOA scored in 1.12kr over Makethemark (4m Maharajah-Global Naughty-Conway Hall) reined by Ulf Ohlsson. Third was Dominion Beach (4m Muscle Hill-Windylane Hanover-Lindy Lane) driven by Orjan Kihlstrom and is Stefan Melander trained.  Three year-olds battled in the Support Justice (200,000NOK to the winner, 2100 meters autostart). That event was won by Black Talisman (3m Sam Bourbon-Netherlee Way-Muscles Yankee) driven by trainer Magnus Teien Gundersen. Second was Championchip (3m Pine Chip-Madam Lavec-Egon Lavec) for Per Oleg Midtfjeld. Third was Robin GT (3m Broadway Hall-Linderchip GT-Enjiy Lavec) for Asbjern Tengsareid in the 1.15.1kr timed contest. Earlier was the Stayerloop (200,000NOK to the winner, 2140 meters voltstart, distance handicapped). One of non-penalized horses was the winner, Titanium Gar (5g Daguet Rapide-Lady Killer Gar-Varenne), with Hugo Landgweg Jr. the pilot and timed in 1.15.6kr. Totem d’Azur (10m Joao Panca-Heidi l’Indienne-Butin du Vivier) was second at 21/1 for trainer/driver Junior Guelpa, overcoming a 40 meter penalty. Third was another 40 meter handicapped entry, Reckless (7m Ready Cash-Haver-Supergill) driven by trainer Bjorn Goop. The aged mares battled in the Flaata Eiendom (200,000NOK first money, 1609 meters autostart) and it produced a quick 1.11.7kr victory by Italy’s Shadow Gar (6f Pine Chip-Lady Killer Gar-Varenne) for Erik Adielsson and trainer Erik Bondo. This one is a half-sister to the above described Stayerlopp winner Titanium Gar. Shadow Gar, pictured below, now has four wins in 2017 from eight outings. Second this day was Indoor Voices (6f Yankee Glide-Celebrity Whisper-SJs Caviar) handled by Orjan Kihlstrom, ahead of Alwaysinblackpedia (6f Muscle Hill-Baker Black Jet-Supergill) driven by trainer Frode Hamre.  One cannot complete the program coverage without mentioning the Kingsrod Trading Monte (100,000NOK to winner, 1609 meters autostart). Sofia Adolfsson was in the irons on Nantucket (11m Viking Kronos-Malabar Lady-Valley Victory), shown below, as that one scored quick timed in 1.11.6kr. Tosca Victory (7m Up di Poggio-Tootsie Rich-Super Arnie) was second for Henriette Larsen, and third went to Quality QC (6g Going Kronos-Tina QC-Quadrophenio) and jockey Christina A. Hande. Well-regarded Tsar de Houelle, Call Me Hanover and O’Grady were back of these.  Thomas H. Hicks

Norway’s Tekno Odin (8m Moe Odin-Lyana-Spring Best) took the featured Unionskampan (purse to winner 300,000SEK, 2140 meters autostart) for coldbloods timed in 1.19.1kr, his fourth straight victory and now with a 11-2-2 slate in 19 starts this year. The brave campaigner now sports 63 wins in 102 career starts for earnings of 9,630,801SEK. Oystein Tjomsland is driver/trainer of the winner that defeated Tekno Jerken and third finishing Solor Stegg. The top standardbred affair this day was the V75 Gold (150,000SEK to the winner, 2140 meters autostart) and the length winner was 1.12.3kr timed Vasterbo Highflyer (8g Look de Star-Vasterbo Highclass-Pine Chip) for trainer Daniel Reden, Stall Zet and driver Johan Untersteiner. The winner is now 3-3-2 in 13 starts this season. Thai Broadway (7m Broadway Hall-Isabella Knick-Tap In) was second for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop and third went to Food Money (8g Andover Hall-Windylane Hanover-Lindy Lane) with Jennifer Tillman up. The V75 Silver for 125,000SEK to the winner over 2140 meters autostart, went to 1.12.3kr timed Slide So Easy (7g Quite Easy-Elegante Frokjar-Smokin Yankee) with trainer Flemming Jensen driving. The victory was his fifth straight and seventh this year in 13 outings. Pepe di Jesolo (7g Ganymede-Zanna di Jesolo-Baltic Speed) took second for Thomas Uhrberg and trainer Edvin Ceka, with third to King City (5m Muscle Hill-Creamy Mimi-Conway Hall) handled by Orjan Kihlstrom for trainer Roger Walmann. The V75 Bronze with 110,000SEK to the winner was raced over 2140 meters autostart. Global Republic (5m Muscle Hill-Serene Yankee-Conway Hall) was the winner timed in 1.12.3kr for Thor Borg and trainer Trond Thorseth. Mellby Collector (5g Going Kronos-Merit Lane-Lindy Lane) was second for the Kihlstrom/Walmann team with third was Sylvester D.K. (7g Hovding Lavec-Happy CN-Ride the Wave) for Peter H. Sjoberg. Other winners on the program were Hades Haleryd (5g Olimede-All American Chill-Giant Chill) timed in 1.11.2kr over 1640 meters autostart in a Klass I event worth 100,000SEK to the winner that Erik Adielsson teamed. Heartbreaker V.S. took a 3140 meter distance handicapped stayer contest timed in 1.14.1kr to earn 100,000SEK. Bjorn Goop trains and drove this one. Monte players battled over 2140 meters autostart for a 50,000SEK first prize and Brasil Boko (6m Love You-Harpune-Speedy Soma) prevailed for Beata Persson. This 1.13.6kr winner is a Veijo Heiskanen trainee. Thomas H. Hicks  

The 3/10 favorite Nuncio (5m Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle) took todays Gr. I UET Masters Finale (purse €399,908, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) by two lengths clocked in 1.10.66kr. Orjan Kihlstrom teamed the Stefan Melander trained and owned harness racing champion. 9/1 Oasis Bi (8m Toss Out-Up Front JM) took second for Erik Adielsson, trainer Stefan Pettersson and Ecurie Frackstad Lantbruks AB. Third was 16/1 Mosaique Face (7m Classic Photo-Iona LB) with Adrian Kolgjini up for Tommy Nilsson Holding AB and trainer Lutfi Kolgjini. Spring Erom and Explosive De Vie were fourth and fifth. Nuncio (Ö.Kihlström/S.Melander) G1 UET Masters Final 18/09/2016 Finale U.E.T Trotting Masters NUNCIO On the Bjerke program was also the VG Norsk Derby (purse €226,922, 2600 meters autostart, 12 starters) with victory to 1.9/1 El Diablo BR (4m Muscle Hill-Fiery Chip) for trainer/driver Frode Hamre. The winner was clocked in 1.13.42kr and is owned by Brinvest Danmark APS. 5/1 Cash Okay (4m Ready Cash-Tresokay) was second for G.V. Gundersen with third earned by 5/1 Ultimate Photo (4m SJ’s Photo-Madam Lavec) and Bjorn Goop. Fourth was the Jeppe Juel driven and trained Akermann (4g Crazed-Ta Ta Hall). The Finn Tack Norsk Criterium (purse €175,325, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) produced a 1.12.71kr timed winner in 14.3/1 Shocking Superman (3m Orlando Vici-Bernadette’s Cat). Bjorn Goop is trainer/driver of this Tar Stable KB owned performer. 19.5/1 Mini Viking (3m Maharajah-Jeunesse Defee) was second for trainer/driver Frode Hamre and third was 15/1 Evil Enok ME (3m Magnetic Power-Topaz Dragon) for trainer/driver N.P. Braekken. Thomas H. Hicks

Today’s Gr. I International Ulf Thoresens at Jarlsberg Norway went to 1.1/1 Sauveur (6m Echo-Operah Bob) with harness racing trainer Ake Lindblom driving for owner Hammab AB of Sweden. Timed in 1.11.23kr the winner secured the winners’ share of the €105,300 purse in the 2100 meter autostart event that was part of the V75 wagering card. 9.5/1 Ringostarr Treb (6m Classic Photo-Farsalo Egral) took second for driver Wim Paal and trainer Holger K. Ehlert. Third was the game 18.4/1 Rod Stewart (6m Love You-Valley Lane) for Tom Erik Solberg and trainer Jerry Riordan for Italian owner Cezziano Ceccaroni. 43/1 Repay Merci (8m Offshore Dream-News From Heaven) was fourth for trainer/driver Knud Monster and Denmark owner Stald Repay. Papagayo E and Anna Mix were the next two across the line. The undercard included the Anders Jahres (400,000Nokr to the winner, 2100 meters autostart) and the 1.11.7kr timed winner was Je T’Aime Express (5f Symphonic Hanover-Je T’Aime Marran-Sugarcane Hanover) for driver Peter Untersteiner. Second went to DD’s Hitman (5f Donato Hanover-Deedee’s Destiny-Muscles Yankee) and driver Peter Ingves with third to Spirit Real (5f Supergill-Civetta Real-Park Avenue Joe) handled by Tom Erik Solberg. Thomas H. Hicks

Bjorn Goop enjoyed quite a day at Bjerke (wins with Rod Stewart, Timone EK and Crfzado dela Noce earlier on the harness racing card) and none better than with Oslo Grand Prix winner Your Highness (7f Chocolatier-La Belle Lady-Conway Hall) as this Fabrice Souloy trainee rallied late to nail Nuncio (5m Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle-Lindy Lane) and Orjan Kihlstrom driving for owner/trainer Stefan Melander. The winning mare, off at 1.7/1 on the PMU network, was clocked in 1.10.5kr for this her seventh straight 2016 victory and it raised career earnings to 8,568,228kr. Nuncio was off at 2.8/1 on PMU and favored on the other major European networks, was a game second and now has an impressive 31-14-2 slate in 47 lifetime appearances. 2.2/1 (PMU) Un Mec d’Heripre (8m Orlando Vici-I Love You Darling-Buvetier d’Aunou) was third for Franck Nivard and trainer Souloy. Papagayo E, Support Justice and Lionel were the next three to the line. The Oslo Grand Prix, a Gr. I UET International event with 1,500,000NoKr to the winner (purse in euros €302,212) was contested over 2100 meters autostart (1-5/16 miles). Your Highness Thomas H. Hicks ATG, Fintoto, Rikstoto, PMU files/photos

Top flight harness racing action occurred throughout Oslo Grand Prix day at Bjerke Travbane. Mares ages three to ten battled in a 1609 meters autostart event worth 175,000NoKr to the winner and 6.5/1 Playing Tua (8f Gigant Neo-Sandy Nalan-Lindy’s Crown) came out on top for trainer/driver Thomas Uhrberg. The impressive, gorgeous, long-striding mare now has 17 career wins in 65 starts for earnings in excess of 2,150,000NoKr. Timed in 1.11.1kr she defeated 12.5/1 Diadora BR (5f Ken Warkentin-Bauxite-SJ’s Caviar) with Thor Borg up for trainer Frode Hamre. Third was 2.4/1 Soho (7f Dream Vacation-Hillery Toll-General November) with Jorma Kontio up for trainer Bo Westergaard. The winner recorded her third win in the last four outings. Late stretch leading Radysin America made a miscue under heavy urging from Bjorn Goop and was disqualified. Heaven’s Door finished unplaced. Four year-olds contested an open event worth 200,000NoKr to the winner and Goop teamed front-stepping 1.9/1 Cruzdo dela Noche (4m Muscle Massive-Alidade-Credit Winner) to a 1.10.4kr victory for trainer Stefan Melander. After a recall the winner was all business and defeated Divisionist (4m Andover Hall-Only Lonely-Yankee Paco) with Jorma Konto up for trainer Melander. Third was another Melander trainee French Laundry (4m Muscles Yankee-Creamy Mimi-Conway Hall) with Orjan Kihlstrom aboard. Broadway Appolo and Cahal des Rioults were fourth and fifth. The top group are US registered. Cruzado dela Noche The Euroamatch for four and five year-olds drew a fine field that raced over 2100 meters autostart for 300,000NoKr first prize. The 1.11.6kr timed winner was the 1.6/1 favorite, and Bjorn Goop piloted, Timone EK (4m Mr. Vic-Gemona-Lemon Dra), an Italian campaigner trained in FR by Fabrice Souloy. 42/1 Exodus Hanover (5m Andover Hall-Exotic Destination-Dream Vacation) was second driven by Orjan Kihlstrom for trainer Roger Walmann, and 2.48/1 Buzz Mearas (5g Dream Vacation-Dance Of Joy-Malabar Man) was third with Roberto Andreghetti holding the lines. Buzz Mearas has been racing well going into this contest. As previously reported Goop won the Energima Cup Final and his elimination with the Riordan trained Rod Stewart, that started reinsman Goop’s big day. Thomas H. Hicks PMU, ATG, Rikstoto, Fintoto files

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