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This Week: Messenger eliminations, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Nassagaweya, Eternal Camnation, Casual Breeze and Maple Leaf Trot eliminations, Woodbine Mohawk Park, Milton, Ontario; and W.N. Reynolds Memorial divisions, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y. Schedule of events: This Saturday (Aug. 25), Yonkers Raceway will host a pair of $40,000 eliminations in the Messenger Stakes for sophomore pacers, the second leg of the sport's pacing Triple Crown. The top four horses in each elimination will return for the $500,000 final on Sept. 1. Also on Saturday, Grand Circuit action at Woodbine Mohawk Park will feature three divisions in the C$276,381 Nassagaweya for 2-year-old pacing colts, three divisions in the C$251,347 Eternal Camnation for 2-year-old pacing fillies and a pair of C$40,000 eliminations in the Maple Leaf Trot for older trotters. On Friday (Aug. 24) Woodbine Mohawk will host a single C$136,000 division in the Casual Breeze for 3-year-old filly trotters. On Sunday (Aug. 26), Tioga Downs will card four sets of W.N. Reynolds Memorial events for freshman pacers and trotters of both sexes. Complete entries for the races at the U.S. tracks are available at this link. Entries for the Woodbine Mohawk races are available at this link. Last time: Met's Hall (Andy Miller) won an exciting $350,000 Dr. Harry M. Zweig Memorial Trot for 3-year-olds at Vernon Downs on Friday (Aug. 17). Met's Hall won by a nose in a personal best time of 1:52. Met's Hall ($27.60) went straight to the lead from the eight hole. He took the first quarter in :26.4. Six Pack (Ake Svanstedt) followed in the pocket with Manchego (Yannick Gingras) following along in third. Andy Miller slowed the second quarter to a crawl of :30.1 as Met's Hall hit the half in :57. Six Pack would pull the pocket just before the half. The two would then battle nose to nose and wheel to wheel all around the final turn. Neither horse would give an inch as they hit three-quarters in 1:25.2. Manchego, who was the only filly in the race, sat in third watching the other two battle it out around the turn. She then went three-wide at the top of the stretch. In an amazing stretch drive, Met's Hall would dig in and get ready for the late charge from Manchego. In the end Met's Hall would win by a nose in a personal best time of 1:52. Magnificent as she was, Manchego had to settle for second best. The gutsy Six Pack would finish third. Met's Hall is a 3-year-old colt by Cantab Hall. Trained by Julie Miller for owners Stroy Inc. and Andy Miller Stable Inc., it was his second win in six starts this season. He now owns seven career victories. Super Girl Riley (Marcus Miller) shocked the field in the $180,000 Zweig Memorial for 3-year-old trotting fillies. The big favorite Plunge Blue Chip (Ake Svanstedt) carved out all the early fractions (:28, :57.2, 1:26.3). Basquiat (Yannick Gingras) followed in the pocket before going on a break at the three-quarter pole. Perfect Summer K (David Miller) would then inherit second. Super Girl Riley ($17.20) came first-over from third in the stretch. She ran down Plunge Blue Chip to win in a career best of 1:54.3. Plunge Blue Chip had to settle for second money. Perfect Summer K finished third. Owned by Paymaq Racing, George Golemes, and Harvey Eisman and trained by Erv Miller, the 3-year-old filly by Muscle Mass won for the second time in 2018. It was her sixth career victory. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 703.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 693.5; 3. David Miller - 374.5; 4. Jordan Stratton - 288; 5. Corey Callahan - 273.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 660.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 504; 3. Tony Alagna - 271; 4. Erv Miller - 220; 5. Jim Campbell - 216. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 144.9; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 139.9; 3. Fashion Farms - 129; 4. Vonknoblauch Stable - 117; 5. Robert Key - 115. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Yonkers Raceway and Woodbine Mohawk Park. Yonkers will feature the Yonkers Trot, Messenger Stakes, Hudson Filly Trot and Lady Maud. Woodbine Mohawk will offer the Canadian Pacing Derby and Maple Leaf Trot, as well as Simcoe Stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters and Champlain Stakes for 2-year-old colt and filly trotters. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

This Week: Zweig Memorial and Zweig Memorial filly trot, Vernon Downs, Vernon, N.Y.; Gold Cup and Saucer final, Red Shores Racetrack & Casino, Charlottetown, PEI; Artiscape, Roll With Joe, and Miss Versatility, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y.; and Prix d'Ete, Hippodrome 3R, Trois Rivieres, Quebec. Schedule of events: A busy week of Grand Circuit action kicks off on Friday (Aug. 17) at Vernon Downs with the $350,000 Zweig Memorial for 3-year-old open trotters and the $178,000 Zweig Filly Trot for 3-year-old filly trotters. There will also be an $80,000 consolation in the open division. Saturday's (Aug. 18) Grand Circuit action will be featured by Red Shores Racetrack & Casino, which will host the C$60,000 Gold Cup and Saucer final for older pacers. On Sunday (Aug. 19), Grand Circuit racing will be contested at Tioga Downs with the $175,000 (est.) Artiscape for older pacing mares, the $175,000 (est.) Roll With Joe for older pacing males, and a $40,000 (est.) leg of the Miss Versatility for older trotting mares. Also on Sunday, Hippodrome 3R will contest the C$200,000 Prix d'Ete for 4-year-old pacers. Complete entries for the races at the U.S. tracks are available at this link. Entries for the Canadian tracks are available at this link. Last time: On a gorgeous Friday evening (Aug. 10) in which it appeared a presence from above intervened to provide perfect conditions, Lazarus N, the Wonder from Down Under, anointed himself as a true superstar with an impressive 1:48.4 performance in the $325,000 Dan Patch Stakes at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino before a legion of admirers in his first pari-mutuel engagement in the U.S. Lazarus N anointed himself as a true superstar with an impressive 1:48.4 performance in the $325,000 Dan Patch Stakes at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. He also owns the distinction of being the only horse to pace sub-1:50 miles in two different hemispheres. "One of the reasons I decided to buy this horse with my brothers was because we are devoutly Catholic," said Duncan Taylor, whose Taylor Made Farms owns the 6-year-old stallion. "First of all his name is Lazarus which represents a miracle, and his dam's name is Bethany, which is the location where the resurrection took place. Then Bethany's sire is Christian Cullen. These factors made it appear as if (purchasing the horse) was meant to be a gift from God." Guided by Yannick Gingras and conditioned by Hall of Famer Jimmy Takter, Lazarus N, a son of Bettor's Delight, left alertly from post position nine to settle into second behind fellow New Zealand-bred Bit Of A Legend N before the teletimer posted the first quarter-mile split of :26.1. Shortly after the two frontrunners glided around the first turn, Gingras brushed the stallion to the lead and the duo hit the half-mile marker in a measured :54.2. As Lazarus N continued to lead the field of nine to the three-quarter pole in 1:22.4, he placed a bit of separation between himself and his rivals. As he rounded the final turn, it seemed the horse would pull away in the stretch to post a facile victory. Halfway down the lane, however, Breeders Crown victor Split The House (Brett Miller) mounted a furious rally which drew him nearly alongside Lazarus N. Proving he already has established a passionate fan base, those in attendance were cheering so loudly for Lazarus N to hit the wire first the words of announcer Steve Cross could scarcely be heard. As the noise of the crowd drowned out all sound, Gingras asked his horse for more. He responded in kind to spurt away from Split The House, as well as a closing McWicked (Brian Sears), to stop the clock in 1:48.4. The stallion paced his last quarter-mile in a stellar :26. "Yannick said this horse only does what you ask of him," Taylor said. "In Thoroughbred racing we would refer to it as not getting to the bottom of them, but in Lazarus' case he is just a very relaxed horse. Jimmy (Takter) keeps telling us how intelligent he is and that characteristic definitely is a part of why he is a special horse. All I know is he is a blessing." After his first U.S. victory, Lazarus N, New Zealand's defending Horse of the Year and that nation's Pacer of the Year in 2015, 2016 and 2017, now improves his record to 36 wins from 46 starts. The stallion has now earned more than $2.8 million. As the 1-2 favorite, Lazarus N provided his backers with $3 for their support. Split The House paid $7.20 at odds of 19-1 for his second place finish while McWicked offered his supporters $2.20 for third. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 681.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 668.5; 3. David Miller - 364.5; 4. Jordan Stratton - 288; 5. Corey Callahan - 273.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 655.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 484; 3. Tony Alagna - 266; 4. Jim Campbell - 216; 5. Erv Miller -200. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 143.6; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 138.6; 3. Fashion Farms - 129; 4. Vonknoblauch Stable - 117; 5. Robert Key - 110. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Yonkers Raceway, Woodbine Mohawk Park, and Tioga Downs. Yonkers will contest eliminations for the Messengers Stakes and Yonkers Trot, the second legs of the Pacing and Trotting Triple Crown, along with eliminations in the companion Lady Maud and Hudson Filly Trot. Woodbine Mohawk Park will contest the Nassagaweya and Eternal Camnation for 2-year-old pacers, along with eliminations in the Canadian Pacing Derby for older pacers and the Maple Leaf Trot for older trotters. Tioga Downs will offer Reynolds Memorial divisions for 2-year-olds. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand CIrcuit  

This Week: Dan Patch Invitational, Hoosier Park, Anderson, Ind.; Carl Milstein Memorial, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; Fox Stake, the Ralph Wilfong, the Horseman Stakes and the Hoosier Stakes, Indiana State Fair, Indianapolis, Ind.; Crawford Farm Trot, Joie De Vie and Tompkins-Geers Stakes, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y.; and Gold Cup and Saucer trials, Red Shores Racetrack & Casino, Charlottetown, PEI. Schedule of events: An extremely busy week of Grand Circuit action kicks off this Wednesday (Aug. 8) as the Indiana State Fair will host one day of Grand Circuit racing with the feature being the $44,868 Fox Stake for 2-year-old colt pacers. The co-featured event is the $28,032 Ralph Wilfong for 2-year-old colt trotters. The Hoosier Stakes for 2-year-olds will see two divisions each in the $23,492 2-year-old filly pace, the $22,908 2-year-old colt pace, the $21,698 2-year-old colt trot and the $21,126 2-year-old filly trot. The Horseman Stakes for 3-year-olds features two divisions in the $31,704 3-year-old filly pace and single divisions in the $37,333 3-year-old colt trot, the $35,574 3-year-old filly trot, and the $28,120 3-year-old colt pace. Friday night (Aug. 10) at Hoosier Park will feature the $325,000 Dan Patch for older pacing horses. Also on Friday, Tioga Downs will host four sets of Tompkins-Geers stakes for 2-year-old pacers and trotters. There will be two divisions each in the $59,500 2-year-old filly pace, $58,000 2-year-old filly trot, $57,800 2-year-old colt trot and $50,400 2-year-old colt pace. On Saturday (Aug. 11), Northfield Park will host the $400,000 Carl Milstein Memorial for 3-year-old pacers. Also on Saturday, Red Shores Racetrack & Casino will host one of two trials for the Gold Cup and Saucer for older pacers. The second trial will be held on Monday (Aug. 13). The week's action will continue on Sunday (Aug. 12) at Tioga Downs with the $175,000 (est.) Crawford Farm Trot for older open trotters and the $175,000 (est.) Joie De Vie for older trotting mares. Complete entries for the U.S. races are available at this link. Entries for the Red Shores Racetrack & Casino races are available at this link. Last time: Meadowlands Racetrack closed out their Championship Meet this past Saturday with several lucrative Grand Circuit races led by the $1.2 million Hambletonian, the first leg of trotting's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds. Rick Zeron, an admitted crier, had reason to well up Saturday after the 93rd Hambletonian. Not only had the veteran horseman won the trotting classic in his first try, but his son Scott was in the sulky to make it a family affair, and the high point of a 43-year-old career. Atlanta won the Hambletonian final in a time of 1:50.4 for driver Scott Zeron. And he got the job done with a filly, the very determined Atlanta. "This is a dream come true," said Rick Zeron. "That's my specialty, trotters. I live and breathe to train a trotter, especially a filly. It's more satisfying for me to train a filly to get where I am today, to win what I did today, than with a colt. It's a bigger challenge." Atlanta won the $1 million Hambletonian final on Saturday, becoming the 14th filly to capture the famed trotting race for 3-year-olds. It was an emotional victory for the father-son team from Oakville, Ontario. The filly won the Hambletonian the hard way, setting the pace and holding on gamely in the lane. Scott Zeron employed those tactics earlier in the day in the first of two eliminations, and got Atlanta beat after setting a wicked pace. Remarkably, Atlanta regrouped quickly after the punishing mile. "I spoke to my assistant trainer Ernie Henry who has looked after her since she was 18 months old," said Rick Zeron. "He said it took her about seven to 10 minutes longer than usual to get her wind back. After that, she was absolutely perfect. He said we were good to go." That was an understatement. In the final, Atlanta was again on the lead. This time, Zeron did a better job of rationing her speed. Atlanta responded by kicking away from challenger Tactical Landing at the top of the stretch to open a three length advantage. She trotted strongly to the wire, winning by one length over 29-1 shot Met's Hall. "I've said it to a few people close to me," said Scott Zeron. "She's the best horse I ever drove. Everything is so fluid and effortless. The mile (in the elimination) just got away from me. I was mad at myself. That's not how I wanted to head into the final. If she was a champion, she would bounce back and she did." The time was 1:50.4 for the mile. It was the second Hambletonian victory for Scott Zeron. He was at the lines when Marion Marauder won in 2016. The win in the final was worth $500,000 for the ownership team of Rick Zeron, Crawford Farms, Holland Racing, Howard Taylor and Brad Grant. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 648.5; 2. Tim Tetrick - 624; 3. David Miller - 294.5; 4. Scott Zeron - 270; 5. Jordan Stratton - 268. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 625.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 444; 3. Tony Alagna - 246; 4. Jim Campbell - 196; 5. Jim King Jr. - 191. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 136.1; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 131.1; 3. Fashion Farms - 129; 4. Vonknoblauch Stable - 117; 5. Bill Donovan - 93.8. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Vernon Downs, Tioga Downs, Red Shores Racetrack & Casino and Hippodrome 3R. Vernon will kick off the week as host of the Zweig Memorial races for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters. Tioga Downs will feature the Roll With Joe for open pacers, Artiscape for older pacing mares, and a leg of the Miss Versatilty for trotting mares. Red Shores Racetrack & Casino has the Gold Cup and Saucer final and Hippodrome 3R will contest the Prix d'Ete for 4-year-old pacers. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

This Week: Hambletonian, Hambletonian Oaks, John Cashman Memorial, Sam McKee Memorial, Lady Liberty, Dr. John Steele Memorial, Cane Pace, Shady Daisy, Peter Haughton Memorial, and Jim Doherty Memorial, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action takes place this Saturday (Aug. 4) at Meadowlands Racetrack with one of the biggest Grand Circuit cards of the season. The afternoon program is led by the $1.2 million Hambletonian, the first leg of trotting's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds. Other major stakes races to be contested that day are the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old filly trotters, the $286,650 John Cashman Memorial for older trotters, the $260,100 Sam McKee Memorial for older pacers, the $197,400 Lady Liberty for older pacing mares, the $154,800 Dr. John Steele Memorial for older trotting mares, the $281,000 Cane Pace, the first leg of Pacing's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds, the $96,600 Shady Daisy for 3-year-old pacing fillies, the $422,350 Peter Haughton Memorial for 2-year-old colt trotters, and the $357,450 Jim Doherty Memorial for 2-year-old filly trotters. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Victimized by brutal trips in his last two starts, Dorsoduro Hanover finally got the journey he needed and pounced on the opportunity to win Saturday's (July 28) $400,000 final of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids in 1:50.1 at The Meadows. American History, who won an elimination of the 52nd edition of the Adios, raced well first over to finish second, 1-1/4 lengths back, while Hitman Hill, the other elimination winner, could not improve position in the Lightning Lane and settled for show. Dorsoduro Hanover won Saturday's $400,000 final of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids in 1:50.1 at The Meadows. Dorsoduro Hanover gave The Meadows-based trainer Ron Burke, perennially the sport's leading conditioner, his first blanket of Adios orchids as the head of his stable, although he was assistant for his father, Mickey, when their horse, May June Character, won the 2007 Adios. A Somebeachsomewhere-Deer Valley Miss gelding who cost $100,000 as a yearling, Dorsoduro Hanover was roughed up from post 10 in the Meadowlands Pace final and again in his Adios elimination but still managed to finish second each time. It seemed likely that he was only a good trip away from a signature victory and Matt Kakaley provided it for him giving him a :28.3 second-panel refresher after a :26.3 opening-quarter burst to the lead. American History took up the chase before the half and pursued the winner gamely but was all out late to preserve his place finish. Once Dorsoduro Hanover crossed the wire, a jubilant Burke and members of his staff sprinted from the paddock to the winner's circle, eschewing the golf cart that customarily provides transport. Burke, however, indicated the wins in 2007 and 2018 were equally important to him. "We have a big crew, and to me, that's what it's about: doing it together," Burke said. "We probably spent about $10 million chasing this, and we finally got one. It's a great feeling to enjoy it with our staff and our core group." In that core group are the owners of Dorsoduro Hanover, who now has earned $575,603 for them: Burke Racing Stable, Silva, Purnell & Libby, Weaver Bruscemi and Wingfield Five. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 569; 2. Yannick Gingras - 568.5; 3. David Miller - 272.5; 4. Jordan Stratton - 268; 5. Corey Callahan - 228.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 595.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 339; 3. Tony Alagna - 216; 4. John Butenschoen - 172; 5. Jim King Jr. - 171. Owners: 1. Burke Racing Stable - 133.5; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 128.5; 3. Vonknoblauch Stable - 117; 4. Fashion Farms - 102; 5. Crawford Farms Racing - 85. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Northfield Park with the Carl Milstein Memorial for 3-year-old pacers; at Hoosier Park with the Dan Patch for free for all pacers; at the Indiana State Fair with the Fox Stakes highlighting 10 stakes; and at Tioga Downs with the Crawford Farm and Joie De Vie for older trotters and Tompkins-Geers races for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

This Week: Delvin Miller Adios final, Adioo Volo and Arden Downs, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; Hambletonian Oaks and Jim Doherty Memorial eliminations and Reynolds Memorial, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action kicks off this Friday (July 27) at The Meadows as the track will feature three divisions in the $60,800 Arden Downs for 2-year-old filly trotters and two divisions in the $40,400 Arden Downs for 2-year-old colt trotters. The Saturday (July 28) card at The Meadows features the $400,000 Delvin Miller Adios final for 3-year-old colt pacers, three divisions in the $121,000 Adioo Volo for 3-year-old filly pacers, two divisions in the $56,440 Arden Downs for 3-year-old filly trotters, two divisions in the $51,914 Arden Downs for 3-year-old colt trotters, two divisions in the $47,634 Arden Downs for 2-year-old filly pacers and two divisions in the $47,634 Arden Downs for 2-year-old colt pacers. Meadowlands Racetrack will offer two sets of elimination races this week, with both finals slated for the Hambletonian card of Saturday (Aug. 4). On Friday, the Meadowlands will host two $20,000 eliminations in the Jim Doherty Memorial for 2-year-old filly trotters. On Saturday the program will feature two $50,000 eliminations in the Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old filly trotters as well as two $46,600 W.N. Reynolds Memorial divisions for 3-year-old male trotters. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Heading into Saturday night (July 21), in two of the previous five installments of the $260,000 Joe Gerrity Jr. Memorial Pace at Saratoga Casino Hotel, the track record has been set. A standard was not established in this edition, but Evenin Of Pleasure did pace the third fastest time (1:49.2) in track history. The winner of the 2017 Gerrity, Bit Of A Legend N (Jordan Stratton), was back to defend his crown and was a 2-1 co-second choice in the wagering on a beautiful night for racing in the Spa City. Bit Of A Legend N sat the pocket behind the favored Rockin Ron (Yannick Gingras), who was hounded while on the engine, having to endure first half fractions of :26.2 and :53.4 before seeing rival Evenin Of Pleasure (Joe Bongiorno) fly past him heading towards three-quarters. Evenin Of Pleasure took over and took off, pacing away from his rivals before stopping the timer in 1:49.2, the third fastest time for any horse in track history. Evenin Of Pleasure's romp came by a margin of 5-1/2 lengths. Bit Of A Legend N now has a win and two seconds in the Gerrity as he was the runner-up while Rockin Ron earned the show spot. With the win, the 8-year-old Evenin Of Pleasure went over the $1 million mark in career earnings. A force at Yonkers this spring and summer, Evenin Of Pleasure is trained by Jenn Bongiorno for owner Gestion J Y Blais Inc. of Montreal. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 507; 2. Yannick Gingras - 468.5; 3. Jordan Stratton - 268; 4. David Miller - 237.5; 5. Scott Zeron - 195. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 438.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 319; 3. Tony Alagna - 196; 4. Jim King Jr. - 171; 5. Peter Tritton - 132. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 117; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 102.8; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 102.8; 4. Crawford Farms Racing - 85; 5. Marvin Katz - 77.2. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at Meadowlands Racetrack. The track will host ten Grand Circuit events, led by the $1 million Hambletonian, the first leg of Trotting's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds, and the $300,000 Cane Pace, the first leg of Pacing's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

This Week: Joe Gerrity Memorial, Saratoga Casino Hotel, Saratoga Springs, N.Y.; Delvin Miller Adios eliminations, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; and Tompkins-Geers and Kindergarten Series, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action will be held this weekend at three different racetracks. Action begins on Friday (July 20) at Meadowlands Racetrack with the second leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. There will be three $10,000 divisions of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old trotting fillies, two $10,000 divisions of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old pacing colts and trotting colts and a single $10,000 division of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old pacing fillies. On Saturday (July 21), the Meadowlands card will offer the $68,600 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old trotting fillies and the $61,900 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old trotting colts. Also on Saturday, Saratoga will host their marquee event, the $260,000 Joe Gerrity Memorial for older pacers. Finally, The Meadows on Saturday will offer a pair of $25,000 eliminations for the Devlin Miller Adios for 3-year-old colt pacers. The $400,000 (est.) Adios final the following Saturday afternoon anchors a blockbuster card that features six Grand Circuit stakes. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: David Miller flashed a wide smile as he guided Courtly Choice to the winner's circle after winning the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. The monkey was off the Hall of Famer's back. After 18 failed efforts, Miller finally owned a victory in the Meadowlands Racetrack's signature event for 3-year-olds. Courtly Choice rallied to win the Pace by 1-1/4 lengths on Saturday night (July 14). "That was sweet," Miller said. "Really sweet." The Pace was an obvious omission on Miller's glittering resume. "The Buckeye" is second on the sport's all-time money list with $222 million in the bank. His best previous Pace finish was a second with Always B Miki in 2014. The sweetness of the moment spread in many directions, including trainer Blake MacIntosh, who also savored the victory in his Pace debut. "I believed in this horse," said MacIntosh, the former assistant to Casie Coleman. "He just had some back luck earlier in the year." And it was a winning gamble for the ownership group that ponied up $61,690 to enter the eliminations. The faith of Hutt Racing Stable, Mac And Heim Stables, Daniel Plouffe and Touch Stone Farms was rewarded with the $333,370 first-place check. Most importantly, it was a moment of redemption for Courtly Choice, who failed to make the finals in the North America Cup and the Max Hempt Memorial. The colt served notice his moment was at hand with a sharp first-up victory in his Pace elimination. And then he finally put it all together for the richest victory of his career. The race seemed primed for a 57-1 upset when a dead-game Dorsoduro Hanover, handled by Matt Kakaley, battled his way to the front at the top of the lane. But Courtly Choice was tracking his every move and angled wide under Miller's urging to score the victory. "The trip worked out good," Miller said. "The couple of horses I thought would leave from the outside left. I was able to get Matt in front of me and nobody else moved. On the last turn, I was real happy with my spot." The time was 1:47.1 on the warm evening. Courtly Choice paid $4.40 as the 6-5 favorite. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 452; 2. Yannick Gingras - 430; 3. Jordan Stratton - 256; 4. David Miller - 226.5; 5. Scott Zeron - 178. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 428.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 280; 3. Jim King Jr. - 171; 4. Tony Alagna - 142; 5. Peter Tritton - 122. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 100.2; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 100.2; 4. Crawford Farms Racing - 80; 5. Fashion Farms - 72. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at The Meadows and Meadowlands Racetrack. The Meadows will host eight Grand Circuit events, led by the final of the Delvin Miller Adios for 3-year-old pacing colts. Meadowlands Racetrack will host eliminations for three lucrative stakes, led by the Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old filly trotters, as well as the Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old colt trotters. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

Harness Racing This Week: Meadowlands Pace, Hambletonian Maturity, W.R. Haughton Memorial, Mistletoe Shalee, Stanley Dancer Memorial, Delvin Miller Memorial, Golden Girls, Miss Versatility and Kindergarten Series, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; and Lawrence B. Sheppard Memorial, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit week begins on Friday (July 13) at Meadowlands Racetrack with two $10,000 divisions in the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old colt trotters and a pair of $10,000 divisions in the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old filly trotters. The stakes heavy Saturday (July 14) Grand Circuit card at The Meadowlands features the $701,830 Meadowlands Pace for 3-year-olds, the $471,100 W.R. Haughton Memorial for free for all pacers, the $405,850 Hambletonian Maturity for 4-year-old trotters, two divisions in the $362,000 Stanley Dancer Memorial for 3-year-old male trotters, two divisions in the $257,000 Delvin Miller Memorial for 3-year-old filly trotters, the $191,800 Mistletoe Shalee for 3-year-old filly pacers, the $189,750 Golden Girls for older pacing mares, and a pair of $30,000 divisions of the Miss Versatility for older trotting mares. Saturday Grand Circuit action also includes the $100,000 Lawrence B. Sheppard for 2-year-old colt pacers at Yonkers Raceway. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Ariana G bested the boys with a world-record performance to win Saturday's (July 7) $250,000 Graduate Series championship for 4-year-old trotters at The Meadowlands, defeating Moonshiner Hanover by 3-3/4 lengths in 1:50.2. Sortie finished third. The time was the fastest ever by a 4-year-old female trotter on a mile track. Ariana G, a Dan Patch Award winner at ages 2 and 3, also surpassed $2 million in career purses with the triumph. Owned by breeders Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, the mare has won 23 of 30 lifetime races and earned $2.01 million. It was her second victory in four starts this year and came in her second race since returning from illness in June. "She was awesome tonight," winning trainer Jimmy Takter said. "I'm so glad she's where she belongs. She went up to Canada (in June) and her blood work was wrong and she scoped bad and I had to give her a little time to rebound from that. She had a good winter, so I knew she was in top-level form, it's just those things happen when they get sick." Ariana G, a daughter of Muscle Hill out of Cantab It All, paid $5.00 to win. Donttellmeagain is known as a little horse among his connections but he came up big to win Saturday's (July 7) $250,000 Graduate Series final for 4-year-old pacers by a neck over Miso Fast in a career-best 1:47.2 at the Meadowlands Racetrack. Western Joe finished third. It was the 15th career victory in 26 races for Donttellmeagain, who has finished worse than third only twice. Donttellmeagain won for the first time since capturing his seasonal debut in a preliminary round of the Graduate at 1-1/8 miles at the Meadowlands on May 5. He held his own, though, against older horses in the Ben Franklin Pace, finishing second in his elimination and fourth in the final. Donttellmeagain, a gelded son of Dragon Again out of Donttellmewhattodo, is owned by Paton Racing Stables. He has won two of six starts this season and pushed his lifetime earnings to $426,460. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 442; 2. Yannick Gingras - 340; 3. Jordan Stratton - 256; 4. David Miller - 177.5; 5. Jason Bartlett - 164. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 383.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 203; 3. Jim King Jr. - 171; 4. Tony Alagna - 132; 5. Peter Tritton - 122. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 91.4; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 91.4; 4. Crawford Farms Racing - 66.7; 5. Richard Poillucci - 66. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at Saratoga Casino Hotel, The Meadows and The Meadowlands. Saratoga will have the Joe Gerrity for older pacers; The Meadows will have eliminations for the Adios for 3-year-old colt pacers; and The Meadowlands will host the second leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old colt and filly pacers and trotters and Tompkins-Geers events for 3-year-old colt and filly trotters. by Paul Ramlow, publicity director, the Grand Circuit

This Week: Nadia Lobell, Hoosier Park, Anderson, Ind.; Graduate Series finals, Meadowlands Pace eliminations, W. N. Reynolds Memorial, and Kindergarten Series, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: This week's Grand Circuit action opens on Friday (July 6) as Hoosier Park will host the $142,000 Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Grand Circuit races will be contested this Friday (July 6) and Saturday (July 7) at the Meadowlands. On Friday the Meadowlands will host two $10,000 divisions in the first leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old colt pacers and two $10,000 divisions in the first leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old filly pacers. The stakes heavy Saturday card features the $250,000 Graduate Series finals for 4-year-old pacers and trotters; a pair of $50,000 Meadowlands Pace eliminations for 3-year-olds; and the $66,200 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old filly trotters. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: This past weekend's Grand Circuit action was highlighted by the Sun Stakes Saturday (June 30) program at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Crystal Fashion won Saturday's $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial for 3-year-old trotters, following a battle between Manchego and leader Six Pack before getting room in the stretch to power to a half-length victory over Six Pack in 1:51.4. Lawmaker finished third. Manchego, the lone filly in the race and 3-5 favorite, went off stride coming around the final turn and finished ninth. It was her first loss in 16 career starts. Six Pack was three-wide around the first turn, a head back in third place, as the field reached the first quarter in :26.2. He grabbed the lead soon thereafter and hit the half in :55.4. Manchego, who was on the outside from the start, worked her way first-over to alongside the leader by three-quarters in 1:23.1, but was unable to get in front. Crystal Fashion was third coming around the final turn, but moved to the outside in the stretch after Manchego went off stride. Crystal Fashion, a son of Cantab Hall out of Window Willow owned by Fashion Farms, has won three of six races this year and seven of 18 in his career. The gelding, who is eligible to August's $1.2 million Hambletonian, has earned $471,537. Sent off at odds of 9-2, Crystal Fashion paid $11.40 to win. Springsteen rocked to a 15-1 upset in Saturday's $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers, where favorite Lather Up went off stride and suffered his first loss in eight starts this year. Springsteen and driver Simon Allard used a three-wide move at three-quarters and overcame Nutcracker Sweet by a head to win in 1:48.3. Hitman Hill finished third. Stay Hungry led the field to the first quarter in :26 before giving the top spot to Dorsoduro Hanover by the half-mile point, which was reached in :53.1. Lather Up, the North America Cup champion, made a first-over move on the backstretch but was unable to get to the front, leaving Springsteen to make a three-wide move as the group hit three-quarters in 1:20.2. In the stretch, Nutcracker Sweet moved to the inside and got the lead, but was unable to hold off Springsteen. Lather Up, who got roughly gaited going around the first turn, went off stride as he came off the final turn and was seventh-placed-eighth in the field of nine. Springsteen is a son of Rock N Roll Heaven out of American Charm. He has won two of five races this year and five of 19 in his career, good for earnings of $479,423. The colt is owned by Allard Racing, Bruce Soulsby, Alan Weisenberg, and Kapildeo Singh. Springsteen paid $32.60 to win. McWicked, perfectly-placed second-over, swung three-wide late on the far turn and had an overwhelming late kick to come up a 1:49.3 winner while taking the $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace final. The Ron Burke-trained threesome of Filibuster Hanover, Rockin Ron, and All Bets Off got away 1-2-3 by the :26.2 first panel, with McWicked fourth early. As the outer tier formed early, it looked like McWicked and driver Brian Sears might have to come first-over, but past the three-eighths All Bets Off pulled from third, giving cover which helped McWicked's chances. The middle splits were pedestrian, :55 and 1:22.2, with All Bets Off continuing his grind against pacesetting Filibuster Hanover, and McWicked readying to mount a wide charge. That charge commenced near the top of the stretch, and when McWicked started his kick, the only thing in doubt was the winning margin, which was 1-1/2 lengths over Rockin Ron, who parlayed prime pocket position for place; 99-1 Mac's Jackpot also used an inside trip to get a high finish, coming home third, just nipped for second. In a career of continuing stardom, McWicked, now seven, boosted his earnings to $2,646,362 in only 80 career starts. The Franklin champion is owned by the S S G Stables of North Boston, N.Y. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 422; 2. Yannick Gingras - 301; 3. Jordan Stratton - 234; 4. Jason Bartlett - 164; 5. David Miller - 155.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 367.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 174; 3. Jim King Jr. - 151; 4. Peter Tritton - 122; 5. Rene Allard - 100. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 87.3; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 87.3; 4. Crawford Farms Racing - 66.7; 5. Richard Poillucci - 66. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at The Meadowlands and Yonkers Raceway. The July 13 Meadowlands program will feature the opening leg of the Kindergarten Series for freshman trotters, while the massive July 14 Meadowlands card will offer the Meadowlands Pace final, the William Haughton Memorial, the Hambletonian Maturity, the Stanley Dancer Trot, the Del Miller Memorial, the Mistletoe Shalee, the Golden Girls and a leg of the Miss Versatilty. Yonkers will host the Lawrence B. Sheppard for 2-year-old pacing colts, also on July 14. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

This Week: Ben Franklin Pace, Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, Max C. Hempt Memorial and James M. Lynch Memorial finals, The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; Cleveland Trotting Classic, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; Tompkins-Geers, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y.; and Landmark Stakes, Historic Track, Goshen, N.Y. Schedule of events: The harness racing Grand Circuit spotlight will once again be on The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono this Saturday night (June 30) as the track will host four lucrative Sun Stakes finals in the $500,000 Ben Franklin for older pacers, the $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial for 3-year-old trotters, the $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers and the $300,000 James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers. Also on Saturday, Northfield Park will host the $175,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic for older trotters. On Friday (June 29), Tioga Downs will host three divisions in the $75,200 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old male pacers and three divisions in the $70,500 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old filly pacers. Also on Friday, Historic Track will card eight Landmark Stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. Purses range from $6,125 to $14,350 for the Landmark Stakes. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Manchego, McWicked, and Lather Up were impressive in victories in the Sun Stakes eliminations Saturday (June 23) at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Manchego kept her career record perfect after 15 starts, but in taking on the boys in her $25,000 Beal Trot elimination she was extended further than she had ever been before, holding off a game Crystal Fashion by a nose while equaling her career best of 1:52.4. Yannick Gingras kept the filly in mid-pack until traffic settled late on the first turn, then got her in gear before the :26.4 quarter, brushed to the lead, and got relatively soft middle fractions of :56 and 1:24.4. But through the stretch Crystal Fashion, who had ducked inside from second-over an eighth of a mile out, gained steadily, with Gingras chasing after the super filly late to maintain the victory in only her third race of the year. Jimmy Takter trains the winning daughter of Muscle Hill, who now has earnings of $929,688 for the ownership of Black Horse Racing, John Fielding and Herb Liverman. McWicked made winning look easy despite a first-over journey, winning handily for driver Brian Sears in 1:48.3. Mach It So set the early pace of :26 and :54.2, then had to contend with the winner. McWicked took the lead shortly after the 1:21.2 three-quarters, then finished out in :27.1, by 2-3/4 lengths ahead of Rockin Ron, who split horses late to just get second over longshot Mac's Jackpot, who nipped Mach It So for advancement to next week's championship. Casie Coleman conditions the veteran son of McArdle, who now is at $2,396,362 in career earnings, for S S G Stables. They saved the best for last on Sun Stakes Saturday elimination night, as the I'm Gorgeous colt Lather Up made the lead past the quarter, then came home in :53.1 in hand late for driver Montrell Teague to freeze the timer in 1:49 in his $25,000 Hempt elimination. After the :26.2 opener put down by Nutcracker Sweet, Lather Up, three-wide just past the eighth pole, raced up to grab command, got a huge breather with a :55.4 half, and then asserted his divisional dominance with the brilliant last half, winning by 2-1/4 lengths over Nutcracker Sweet, with Wes Delight edging Done Well to move on to the final. But someone will have to go a big mile in the final to defeat Lather Up, trained by Clyde Francis and moving his bankroll to $544,765 for owners Gary and Barbara Iles, who saw their pride and joy remain undefeated in seven seasonal starts. Complete recaps of the weekend races, including the other Pocono stakes eliminations, are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 392; 2. Yannick Gingras - 291; 3. Jordan Stratton - 154; 4. Jason Bartlett - 139; 5. David Miller - 130.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 315; 2. Jim King Jr. - 151; 3. Jimmy Takter - 129; 4. Peter Tritton - 122; 5. Rene Allard - 80. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 74.8; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 74.8; 4. Richard Poillucci - 66; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 60. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next week at Meadowlands Racetrack, Hoosier Park and Yonkers Raceway. The Meadowlands will host the Graduate Series finals for 4-year-old pacers and trotters, Meadowlands Pace eliminations for 3-year-olds, a Reynolds division for 3-year-old filly trotters, and the first leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-old colt and filly pacers. Hoosier Park will card the Nadia Lobell for 3-year-old filly pacers and Yonkers features Lawrence Sheppard eliminations for 2-year-old pacers. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

This Week: Ben Franklin Pace, Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, Max C. Hempt Memorial and James M. Lynch Memorial eliminations, The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Schedule of events: The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono will host four sets of stakes eliminations on Saturday (June 23). There will be three $35,000 eliminations in the Ben Franklin for older pacers; a trio of $25,000 eliminations in the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial for 3-year-old trotters and the Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old pacers; and two $20,000 eliminations in the James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers. Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Last weekend's Grand Circuit action was highlighted by the $760,000 Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old pacers on Saturday (June 16) at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Lather Up captured the Pepsi North America Cup in a time of 1:48.1. Trained by Clyde Francis, Lather Up and driver Montrell Teague powered forward from the beginning and took no prisoners en route to a four length score in 1:48.1. "It's a sensational feeling," said co-owner and breeder Gary Iles. "To come away with a win, it doesn't get any better than this." The win was sweet redemption for trainer Francis and driver Teague after they came up just short in the 2015 edition with Wiggle It Jiggleit. Lather Up fired from post four to the early lead, but was overtaken at the opening quarter (:26.3) by Done Well and driver Tim Tetrick. Teague wasted little time retaking the lead in the second quarter and had his charge showing the way through a :54.1 opening half. "I definitely wanted to retake," said Teague. "(Tetrick) could have went on and taken a bigger fraction for the half but I was trying to go back to the front and back the half down as much as I could." Nutcracker Sweet and driver David Miller were first-up rounding the far turn, supplying cover for a perfectly placed second-over Stay Hungry and driver Doug McNair. Lather Up reached three-quarters in a sizzling 1:21.3 to lead into the lane. Two-hole sitter Done Well and an off-cover Stay Hungry fired their best shot in the stretch, but were no match for the 3-5 mutuel favorite. Lather Up powered home in :26.3 for his biggest victory and sixth win in as many starts this season. Done Well finished second, while Lost In Time and driver Scott Zeron rallied from eighth, placed fourth-over at three-quarters, to grab third. Stay Hungry finished fourth. Owned and bred by Gary and Barbara Iles, Lather Up now holds a career record of 10 wins in 13 starts. The victory increased his seasonal earnings to $458,165 and career earnings to $532,265. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 368; 2. Yannick Gingras - 266; 3. Jordan Stratton - 154; 4. Jason Bartlett - 139; 5. David Miller - 104.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 270; 2. Jim King Jr. - 146; 3. Peter Tritton - 122; 4. Jimmy Takter - 112; 5. Richard Banca - 75. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2. Richard Poillucci - 66; 3t. Burke Racing Stable - 65.9; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 65.9; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 60. Looking ahead: Next weekend Grand Circuit action will be taking place at four different tracks. Pocono will have the finals for the Ben Franklin (older pacers), Earl Beal Memorial (3-year-old trotters), Max Hempt Memorial (3-year-old pacers) and James Lynch (3-year-old filly pacers); Northfield Park will host the Cleveland Trotting Classic for older trotters; Tioga Downs will offer Tompkins-Geers stakes for 3-year-old colt and filly pacers; and Historic Track will feature Landmark Stakes for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

This Week: North America Cup, Fan Hanover, Roses Are Red, Goodtimes and Armbro Flight finals, Woodbine Mohawk Park, Milton, Ontario. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit spotlight will be on Woodbine Mohawk Park this weekend as the Ontario oval hosts five lucrative stakes finals on Saturday night (June 16) led by the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old colt pacers. Also on the card will be the C$415,000 Fan Hanover for 3-year-old filly pacers, the C$370,000 Roses Are Red for older mare pacers, the C$266,000 Goodtimes for 3-year-old colt trotters and the C$250,000 Armbro Flight for older mare trotters. Complete entries for the Mohawk races can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Homicide Hunter and driver Aaron Merriman moved to the lead following the halfway point of Saturday's (June 9) Charlie Hill Memorial and never looked back, winning the $200,000 event for older trotters by 4-1/2 lengths over In Secret in 1:50.3 on a track labeled good at Eldorado Scioto Downs. Charmed Life finished third. Homicide Hunter was a 1:50.3 winner in the Charlie Hill Memorial. The winning time equaled the world record for an older gelding trotter on a five-eighths-mile track and was a stakes and track record. Defending champion Crazy Wow and two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Marion Marauder were scratched sick, reducing the field to seven horses. Race favorite Will Take Charge went off stride at the start and finished sixth. I Know My Chip took the early lead in a :26.3 opening quarter-mile before seeing Smalltownthrowdown get the top spot prior to the half-mile point. Driver Sam Widger moved I Know My Chip back to the lead at the half, reached in :54.2, but faced pressure from Homicide Hunter, who was in front by the time he reached three-quarters in 1:22. Homicide Hunter is a 6-year-old gelding by Mr Cantab out of Evening Prayer. He is owned by Crawford Farms Racing of New York and trained by Chris Oakes. The horse was bred by Patrick Graham. For the year, Homicide Hunter has won two of three races and earned $116,500. For his career, he has won 32 of 65 starts and banked $1.22 million. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 311; 2. Yannick Gingras - 211; 3. Jordan Stratton - 154; 4. Jason Bartlett - 139; 5. David Miller - 82.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 238; 2. Peter Tritton - 122; 3. Jim King Jr. - 121; 4. Jimmy Takter - 85; 5. Richard Banca - 75. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 57.9; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 57.9; 4. Richard Poillucci - 56; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 50. Looking ahead: Next weekend will see Grand Circuit action taking place at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, with eliminations for the Ben Franklin (older pacers), Earl Beal Memorial (3-year-old colt trotters), Max Hempt Memorial (3-year-old colt pacers) and James Lynch (3-year-old filly pacers) on Saturday (June 23). by Paul Ramlow, publicity director  

This Week: Currier & Ives, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; Armbro Flight, Goodtimes, Pepsi North America Cup, Fan Hanover and Roses Are Red eliminations, Woodbine Mohawk Park, Milton, Ontario; Charlie Hill Memorial, Scioto Downs, Columbus, Ohio; and Graduate Series third leg, Tioga Downs, Nichols, N.Y. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action this week began on Tuesday (June 5) at The Meadows with three divisions in the $73,835 Currier & Ives for 3-year-old filly trotters. Looking For Zelda rolled home in a stakes record 1:54.1 in her division, while Nixie Volo and Bill's Lady captured the other splits. On Wednesday (June 6) The Meadows will offer two divisions in the $110,260 Currier & Ives for 3-year-old male trotters. Action resumes on Friday (June 8) at Woodbine Mohawk Park with two C$35,000 eliminations in the Armbro Flight for trotting mares and two C$30,000 eliminations in the Goodtimes for 3-year-old trotting colts. The Saturday (June 9) card at Mohawk features a trio of C$50,000 eliminations for the Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old pacing colts, two C$35,000 eliminations in the Roses Are Red for pacing mares and two C$35,000 eliminations in the Fan Hanover for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Scioto Downs will also host Grand Circuit racing on Saturday as the central Ohio oval features the $200,000 Charlie Hill Memorial for older trotters. Tioga Downs will round out a busy Grand Circuit week on Sunday (June 10) with $75,000 (est.) third leg contests in the Graduate Series for 4-year-old open pacers and trotters. Complete entries for the U.S. races can be found by clicking on this link. Mohawk entries can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: The road to the Pepsi North America Cup made a final stop on Saturday (June 2) at Woodbine Mohawk Park for the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes. A group of 28 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings competed over three $46,200 divisions with 19 of the 28 competitors eligible to the Pepsi North America Cup. Burning Midnight paced home in :27 to hit the wire first in 1:50.4. The first division saw Burning Midnight and driver Trevor Henry pull off a 28-1 stunner in a wild finish that had six horses across the track. Nutcracker Sweet, the 6-5 favorite, cleared early-leader Hidden Delight entering the backstretch and led the field through middle-half fractions of :54.2 and 1 22.1. The speedy Summer Travel left from post 10 and was parked the entire mile, grinding away first-over, while eventual winner Burning Midnight was in that outside flow sitting ninth and fourth-over turning for home. In the stretch, Hidden Delight popped from the two-hole and took the lead, but couldn't hold off rivals on his outside. Simple Kinda Man angled from a buried spot and came flying, but the fastest of them all was Burning Midnight, who paced home in :27 to hit the wire first in 1:50.4. Simple Kinda Man was second, while Grand Teton got third despite a quick mid-stretch break. Hidden Delight settled for fourth. A gelded son of Mach Three, Burning Midnight came into Saturday's contest off a third-place finish in an Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event for his season's debut. The Corey Giles trainee went three-for-eight during his rookie campaign, posting a mark of 1:51.3. The Somebeachsomewhere victory gives Giles his first career Grand Circuit score. Burning Midnight now has $107,292 in career earnings for owners Brad Gray and Denise Guerriero, who will be making the starting fee payment this Saturday to take a shot at the Pepsi North America Cup. Lather Up remained undefeated in 2018 with an easy victory in the second Somebeachsomewhere division. Driven by Montrell Teague, Lather Up got 1-9 favorite respect and called all the shots. The son of I'm Gorgeous posted fractions of :27, :55.4 and 1:23.4, before pacing off on his rivals and winning in 1:50.3. St Lads Neptune delivered a strong final quarter charge to finish second, beaten 1-1/4 lengths, while Scouts Report and Stock were six-plus lengths back rounding out the top four. Trained by Clyde Francis, Lather Up is now four-for-four as a 3-year-old and eight-for-11 overall in his career. Saturday's score increased his career earnings to $133,015 for owners Gary and Barbara Iles. The final division was captured by Jimmy Freight. Driven by Louis Philippe Roy, Jimmy Freight was fired out to the lead and never looked back. The Richard Moreau trainee posted fractions of :26, :55.2 and 1:22.4, before pacing home in :27.3 to win by 4-1/2 lengths in 1:50.2. Metro Pace champion Lost In Time was forced to come first-up and struggled on the far turn. The Jimmy Takter trainee lost significant ground on the leader, but kept battling in the lane and fought off rivals to finish second. When You Dance finished third, Chocolate Swirl was fourth. Owned by Adriano Sorella, Jimmy Freight is now three-for-four this season with all three wins by more than three lengths. The son of Sportswriter was not paid into the Pepsi North America Cup. Jimmy Freight now has 10 wins and a career bankroll of $211,524. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 269; 2. Yannick Gingras - 184; 3. Jordan Stratton - 154; 4. Jason Bartlett - 139; 5. Daniel Dube - 75. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 213; 2. Peter Tritton - 122; 3. Jim King Jr. - 119; 4. Richard Banca - 75; 5t. Jimmy Takter - 70; 5t. Rene Allard - 70. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2. Richard Poillucci - 54; 3t. Burke Racing Stable - 52.9; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 52.9; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 50. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will again take place at Mohawk next weekend as the track will host its five stakes finals, led by the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup, on Saturday night (June 16). by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit    

This Week: Battle of Lake Erie, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; and Graduate Series second leg and Somebeachsomewhere, Woodbine Mohawk Park, Milton, Ontario. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action will take place on Saturday (June 2) at two venues. Northfield Park will host the $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie for open pacers and Woodbine Mohawk Park will feature three C$60,000 divisions in the Somebeachsomewhere for 3-year-old pacing colts, a pair of C$63,500 second leg divisions in the Graduate Series for 4-year-old pacers and a single C$95,250 race in the second leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-old trotters. Complete entries for the Northfield Park race can be found by clicking on this link. Mohawk entries can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: The polls have closed and it's officially Trump Nation. The colt by that very same name proved quite the best Saturday night (May 26), winning Yonkers Raceway's $300,000 Art Rooney Pace. The 28th Rooney saw six 3-year-old colts and two geldings start, but seven ended up chasing in vain. Trump Nation captured the $300,000 Art Rooney Pace. From post position four, Trump Nation (Jason Bartlett, $6.80) was forwardly-placed, as was Babes Dig Me (Brett Miller). The latter made the first lead, before the former played leapfrog. Trump Nation seized the day (night?) just after a :27.3 opening quarter-mile. Trump Nation, who won the second of last week's two elimination races, then rated a :29 next subsection (:56.3 half), which would serve him well. Along came 3-5 favorite Springsteen (Brian Sears), first-up from fifth, and the race was underway in earnest. Kwik Talkin (George Brennan) slipped out to race second-over, but gapped badly. Meanwhile, the leader and his 'prompter' rolled through a :26.4 third quarter (1:23.2), with the people's preference packing it in readily. Trump Nation owned a 1-3/4 length lead in and out of the final turn. Babes Dig Me edged from the pocket, while Minnie Vinnie had room after sitting third. However, Trump Nation was up to the challenge, defeating Minnie Vinnie by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:51.3 -- a life-best by a good number. Babes Dig Me was clearly third, with 124-1 rank outsider Major Authority (Mark MacDonald) and Decoy (Dave Miller) rounding out the payees. Kwik Talkin, Springsteen and Jimtastic (Eric Goodell) completed the order. For second choice Trump Nation, a statebred son of Betterthancheddar co-owned by Evan Katz and Crawford Farms Racing and trained by Chris Oakes, it was his third win in four seasonal starts. "I couldn't have asked for the race to work out any better," Bartlett said. "I was able to back down the half and pick it up when Springsteen came at me. I thought the two outside horses (Babes Dig Me and Decoy) had to leave, and when I saw Brett (Miller, Babes Dig Me), I let him go and retook. "I have to say that (former trainer) Andrew (Harris) really did the right thing with him last season, wanting to race him from off the pace. He deserves a lot of credit." As does the chauffeur, who won his first Rooney Pace in his 11th try. "It took me long enough," Bartlett said. Complete recaps of all the weekend races, including the Camluck Classic at The Raceway at Western Fair District and a trio of $150,000 invitational events at Harrah's Philadelphia, are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 209; 2. Yannick Gingras - 149; 3. Jason Bartlett - 139; 4. Jordan Stratton - 134; 5. Daniel Dube - 75. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 158; 2. Peter Tritton - 102; 3. Jim King Jr. - 99; 4. Richard Banca - 75; 5. Rene Allard - 70. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 87; 2. Richard Poillucci - 44; 3t. Burke Racing Stable - 40.3; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 40.3; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 40. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next week at The Meadows, Scioto Downs, Woodbine Mohawk Park, and Tioga Downs. The Meadows will card the Currier & Ives for 3-year-old trotters of both sexes, Scioto will host the Charlie Hill for open trotters, Mohawk will feature five stakes eliminations, led by the North America Cup for 3-year-old male pacers, and Tioga Downs will offer the third leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-old pacers and trotters. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

This Week: Camluck Classic, The Raceway at Western Fair District, London, Ontario; Art Rooney and Lismore, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; and Maxie Lee Memorial, Commodore Barry and Betsy Ross, Harrah's Philadelphia, Chester, Pa. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit will take place at three locations this weekend. Action begins on Saturday (May 26) at The Raceway at Western Fair District with the C$150,000 Camluck Classic for free for all pacers. Also on Saturday, Yonkers Raceway will host the $300,000 final of the Art Rooney Pace (3-year-old colts/geldings) and the $111,444 Lismore Pace (3-year-old fillies). Harrah's Philadelphia will host three Invitational events on Sunday (May 27), each with a purse of $150,000, in the Maxie Lee Memorial for older trotters, the Commodore Barry for older pacing males and the Betsy Ross for older mare pacers. Complete entries for the Yonkers and Harrah's Philadelphia races can be found by clicking on this link. Western Fair entries can be found by clicking on this link. Last time: Yonkers Raceway's foggy Saturday night (May 19) featured eliminations for both the Art Rooney and Lismore Paces. With 10 3-year-old boys entering the Rooney and nine sophomore girls in the Lismore, it was three games of 'musical chairs' to determine next week's finalists. Odds-on favorite Decoy (David Miller, $2.20) made short work of his four foes in the first $40,000 elimination for the Rooney. Unhurried from post position three, he rolled to the lead past the half, then rolled away. The final margin over a 'good' surface was 8-1/2 lengths in 1:54. Minnie Vinnie (Brett Miller) closed for second as the 32-1 rank outsider, with Major Authority (Brian Sears) third and early leader Jimtastic (Jason Bartlett) fourth. Matinee Fashion (George Brennan) eliminated himself with a break down the backside the second time. For Decoy, a son of Somebeachsomewhere co-owned by Brixton Medical Inc., R A W Equine and Joe Sbrocco and trained by Jimmy Takter, it was his second win in three seasonal starts. Saturday's other 40-large elim for the Rooney saw Trump Nation (Bartlett, $9) hold off both 4-5 choice Springsteen (Sears) and Babes Dig Me (Brett Miller) by a head and a neck, respectively. Pole-sitting Trump Nation took over from early leader -- and subsequent breaker -- Handsoffmychips (Brennan), then finished it off in 1:53.3, his fastest purse mile of the season. Kwik Talkin (Jordan Stratton) wound up fourth. Third choice Trump Nation, a statebred son of Betterthancheddar co-owned by trainer Andrew Harris and Evan Katz, is now two-for-three this season. The evening's lone $20,000 elimination for the Lismore was won by Jewels Forreal (Dan Dube, $5.20, part of entry) in a life-best 1:55.1. Pocketed from post four, Jewels Forreal was able to get out when entrymate Python Blue Chip (Brennan) made a bad, first-over break in the final turn. Pass Line Bluechip (Bartlett) cut the mile but could not last, beaten a head. Checkered Past (Mark MacDonald) was third, with Solitary (Brent Holland), Alexa's Power (Stratton), Believe In Me (Sears), Reign On Me (Brett Miller) and a recovering Python Blue Chip also qualifying for the final. Krushed Apple (David Miller) was outrun. For second choice (part of three-headed entry) Jewels Forreal, a daughter of So Surreal co-owned as Burke Racing by trainer Ron Burke and Weaver Bruscemi, it was her first win in seven 2018 tries. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 179; 2. Yannick Gingras - 149; 3. Jordan Stratton - 134; 4. Jason Bartlett - 109; 5. Daniel Dube - 75. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 138; 2. Peter Tritton - 102; 3. Jim King Jr. - 99; 4. Richard Banca - 75; 5. Rene Allard - 70. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 87; 2. Richard Poillucci - 44; 3. Jo Ann Looney-King - 40; 4t. Burke Racing Stable - 35.3; 4t. Weaver Bruscemi - 35.3. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place at Northfield Park and Mohawk next weekend. Northfield will host the Battle of Lake Erie for open pacers and Mohawk will feature the Somebeachsomewhere for 3-year-old colt pacers and the second leg of the Graduate for 4-year-old open pacers and trotters. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand CIrcuit  

Harness Racing This Week: Graduate Series Trot first leg, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; and Art Rooney and Lismore eliminations, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action takes place this Saturday (May 19) at Meadowlands Racetrack with a pair of $50,000 divisions in the first leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-old open trotters. Also on Saturday, Yonkers Raceway will host two $40,000 eliminations in the Art Rooney for 3-year-old open pacers and a single $20,000 elimination in the Lismore for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last Time: The mercurial W.N. Reynolds Memorial found its way to Westchester Saturday night (May 12), with Yonkers Raceway hosting six divisions for 3-year-old pacers of both genders. More than $132,000 was up for grabs in three divisions each for the boys and the girls. The fastest male mile of the $23,066 per race trio was turned in by odds-on Wes Delight (Corey Callahan, $2.70). From post position four, he took over from a 90-1 bombardier and finished the first event from there (:27.3, :56.2, 1:25.1, 1:53.3). Wes Delight defeated Trump Nation (Jason Bartlett) by 2-1/2 lengths, with 129-1 proposition Yupper (Brett Miller) third. For Wes Delight, a son of Bettors Delight co-owned by trainer Mark Harder, Rick Phillips and Deena Frost, it was his second win in three seasonal starts. "A little kid could drive him," Callahan said. "He had the leader stop in front of him (in PA Sire Stakes at the Meadows), so I thought if I could make the front, I'd leave with him. "He does only what's asked of him." The other colt/gelding divisions were won by My Delight (by Betterthancheddar); owner Bay Pond Racing Stable/trainer Homer Hochstetler/driver Brent Holland; 1:55.1/$71 and Mach N Cheese (by Betterthancheddar); owner Save The Day Stable/trainer Rob Harmon/driver Jordan Stratton; 1:54.1/$7.40. Saturday night's trio of Reynolds for the ladies, worth $21,066, $21,066 and $21,566, respectively, were won by Checkered Past (by American Ideal); owner All Star Racing/trainer Peter Foley/driver Mark MacDonald; 1:54.1/$3.40; Presto Blue Chip (by American Ideal); co-owners Howard and Michael Ouriel/trainer Jeff Smith/driver Brett Miller; 1:54.2/$6.50; and Alexa's Power (by Somebeachsomewhere); owner Jeff Snyder/trainer Jim Campbell/driver Tim Tetrick; 1:54.4/$9.30. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 159; 2. Jordan Stratton - 134; 3. Yannick Gingras - 129; 4. Jason Bartlett - 94; 5. Daniel Dube - 65. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 128; 2. Peter Tritton - 102; 3. Jim King Jr. - 79; 4. Richard Banca - 75; 5. Rene Allard - 65. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 87; 2. Richard Poillucci - 34; 3t. Burke Racing Stable - 30.3; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 30.3; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 30. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next week at Mohawk Racetrack (first leg of the Miss Versatility for trotting mares); The Raceway at Western Fair District (Camluck Classic for open pacers); Yonkers Raceway (Art Rooney and Lismore finals for 3-year-old pacers); and Harrah's Philadelphia (Maxie Lee Memorial for open trotters and Betsy Ross for pacing mares). Paul Ramlow

Harness Racing This Week: W.N. Reynolds Memorial, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y. Schedule of events: Yonkers Raceway on Saturday night (May 12) will host three divisions in the $69,200 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers and three divisions in the $63,700 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: She's baaack! And much to the chagrin of the others in the older trotting division, she just might be better than ever. Hannelore Hanover, the defending Dan Patch Horse of the Year, overcame post position 12 in her 2018 debut to win the $182,500 Arthur J. Cutler Memorial at the Meadowlands Saturday night (May 5). The betting public was unafraid despite the second-tier starting spot, sending the Ron Burke trainee to the gate as the 3-5 choice. With the race at a mile and an eighth, the starting gate looked a bit wobbly as they made their way out of the turn heading to the start. "The gate bounced in everybody's face (in the first tier)," said winning driver Yannick Gingras. "So I had to give myself a little room and be a little cautious." At the start, 9-1 chance Will Take Charge was on the go and led at the quarter before yielding the point to 7-2 second choice Crazy Wow, who hit the half in :55.1. Mambo Lindy was making progress racing on the rim while towing Hannelore Hanover closer to the leaders. At the head of the stretch, Mambo Lindy was at Crazy Wow's throat as Hannelore Hanover tipped off cover and started to roll. With a sixteenth to go, Will Take Charge found room after racing in the pocket and was rallying along the inside, but he did not have quite enough to prevent Hannelore Hanover from winning for the 37th time in 59 lifetime starts. "At the top of the stretch, I thought I was going to be an easy winner," said Gingras. "Then I was a little worried, but she kicked in. She's definitely better now than she was at the start of last year. Hopefully, she has as good a year as she had last year. She's just an incredible horse." The 6-year-old daughter of Swan For All finished the 1-1/8 mile distance in 2:06, a neck in front of a stubborn Will Take Charge. Crazy Wow held on for third. The winner, who returned $3.40 to her backers, is owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino and J&T Silva Stables. Her lifetime bankroll now stands at $2,558,677. Lindy's Big Bang and driver David Miller inherited the lead just prior to the three-quarter-mile point from an off stride On The Ropes and remained in front from there to win Saturday's (May 5) $133,800 Dexter Cup for 3-year-old trotters by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:56.1 at Freehold Raceway. Don finished second and Perlucky was third, although both needed to survive inquiries to maintain their spots. Don's inquiry was for possible interference while Perlucky was examined for compliance with the breaking rule after going off stride nearing the finish line. On The Ropes, who was the race's 3-5 favorite, led from the start from post No. 1, with driver Dan Dube posting fractions of :28 for the opening quarter-mile and :58.1 for the half. As the horses made their way up the backstretch heading for the final turn, On The Ropes made a break, leaving Lindy's Big Bang on the lead. Lindy's Big Bang fended off challenges from Don to his outside and Perlucky in the passing lane to earn his second victory in three starts this season. "We got a bit lucky there," winning driver Miller said. "My horse still felt strong when Danny's horse ran; I think we would have given him a run. My horse was good today." Also going off stride in the race was last week's Dexter Cup elimination winner Vic's Winner, who made a break on the final turn while in fourth place. Maxus, who was the field's leading money-winner, was scratched injured. Miller co-owns Lindy's Big Bang with Mel Hartman and David McDuffee. The gelding, a son of Explosive Matter out of Lindy Of My Dreams, is trained by Richard "Nifty" Norman. He has won four of 15 career races and earned $117,233. He was bred by Lindy Farms of Connecticut. Lindy's Big Bang paid $13.00 to win. Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 149; 2. Yannick Gingras - 129; 3. Jordan Stratton - 119; 4. Jason Bartlett - 84; 5. Daniel Dube - 65. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 126; 2. Peter Tritton - 102; 3. Jim King Jr. - 79; 4. Richard Banca - 75; 5. Rene Allard - 65. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 87; 2. Richard Poillucci - 34; 3t. Burke Racing Stable - 30.3; 3t. Weaver Bruscemi - 30.3; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King - 30. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action resumes on May 19 at The Meadowlands with the first leg of the Graduate for 4-year-old open trotters and at Yonkers Raceway with eliminations in the Art Rooney for 3-year-old open pacers and the Lismore for 3-year-old filly pacers. Paul Ramlow

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