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CHESTER, PA - Over $190,000 in stakes purses were on the line as three-year-old fillies of both gaits each contested three division of John Simpson Sr. series stakes action on Wednesday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia. Trotters were first to the track on the Wednesday card, and the Lucky Chucky filly Lucky Ava was first to the finish line, posting splits of 27.3, 56.4, and 1:26.2 en route to a 1¾ length wire-to-wire victory in a lifetime best of 1:55.1. Trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt, straight off a monumental Sunday at Lexington which may be part of a Trainer of the Year title possibility, was in the sulky for Ake Svanstedt Inc., Little E LLC, and the Van Camp Trotting Corporation, whose trotter has now won $382,264. Driver Scott Zeron tucked the Chapter Seven filly Lima Novelty fourth early, then saw that become a 3-tuck as a rival broke, and was content to chase longshot Winbak Noelle, who set good fractions of 27.1 and 55.4. Lima Novelty moved down the backstretch, got to the lead by the 1:24.4 3/4s, then went on strongly through the stretch to have a 2½ length advantage at the end of a 1:54.1 mile. Linda Toscano trains the winner of $278,964 for owner Ken Jacobs. Zeron and Toscano came right back to take the final trot division with another daughter of Chapter Seven, Repentance, who crossed the wire 2 1/4 lengths to the good in 1:54.4. Once again first-over proved the winning route, as Hey Judy Judy, second choice to the victress, set fractions of 28.1, 57.2, and 1:26.1, but could not hold on against the winner the last 1/8 and faded. The winner, who lost a three-race win streak with an "untimely break" in her NYSS final (but what's "a timely break," anyway?), started a new winning streak while raising her bankroll to $247,327 for Diamond Creek Racing. On the sidewheeling side, Scuola Hanover looked the part of a 1-5 favorite, moving after a 26.2 opener to command, putting up middle numbers of 55.1 and 1:22.4, and then staying clear by 2¼ lengths at the end of a mile in a lifetime best of 1:50.4, which was only 3/5 of a second off Put On A Show's 2010 divisional standard for Philly. David Miller handled sulky chores behind the daughter of A Rocknroll Dance, who now has a bankroll of $207,298 for trainer Andrew Stafford, co-owner with Arthur Stafford and Thomas Ireland. The American Ideal filly Solitary, right back on the track after winning at Freehold on Saturday, was out most of a 25.4 quarter for driver Brett Miller before getting the lead in her section. Aldine Hanover, who forced that rough quarter, came back to take command and went middle splits of 54.4 and 1:22.4, with Solitary waiting in the two-hole and favored E Dees Well Said swinging wide into the lane. Through the stretch the battle was inside (Solitary) and outside (E Dees Well Said), with Solitary taking a neck decision while reducing her mark to 1:51.2. The winner went 17 starts in 2018 before getting to the winners circle, but now she has won three of her last four for trainer Nick Surick and the partnership of William Daggett Jr., Lawrence Vukovic, and the J L Benson Stables Inc. while raising her bank account to $199,097. In the final pacing cut, Alexis Faith got a tick closer to the local track record than did Scuola Hanover, as she lowered her mark to 1:50.3 while looking like a 1-20 shot should. Driver David Miller, taking two of the three pacing stakes divisions on the afternoon, kept her fourth in a five-horse field until the 5/8, then charged up raw and came a 54.2 back half with the filly to be 3¼ lengths clear on the money. Speaking of money, Alexis Faith gave both her sire American Ideal and her dam Cannae Cammie a new $500,000 credit as she pushed her earnings lifetime to $502,001 for trainer Casie Coleman and the ownership quartet of West Wins Stable, Jim Fielding, J. Robert Darrow, and Kevin McKinlay. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The two-year-old American Ideal - Shake That Junk colt Shake That House might well have earned himself a spot in his division's Breeders Crown elimination ten days hence at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, coming within 3/5 of a second of his divisional world record by winning a $15,000 pace Tuesday in 1:50.2 over the mountain oval. The winner, a ¾ brother to 2017 Breeders Crown champion Split The House, quarter-moved from third for driver George Napolitano Jr. after another well-bred horse, the sophomore Captain Deo (a Somebeachsomewhere colt out of the $1.9M-winning Worldly Beauty), smoked the opening panel in 25.3 in the "nw 4 races" event. Shake That House went on to post midsplits of 54.3 and 1:22.1, then held off the stretch charge of Captain Deo by a half-length. It was the seventh lifetime start and third win for Shake That House, who was coming off a 3-3 finish in the Metro elims and final, and who previously had won in 1:52.2 at Vernon. Chris Oakes, the trainer of not only Split The House but also the new world's fastest trotter Homicide Hunter, conditions the rapidly-developing freshman for Crawford Farms Racing, Alan Johnston, and Norfolk Racing Stables. The 1:50.2 clocking was just short of the 1:49.4 world record of Somestarsomewhere set, appropriately enough, in a 2013 Breeders Crown elimination right here at Pocono. Earlier, Napolitano did something he does not do regularly - drive a horse who paid $50.80 to win. Revelry, who had only one show finish in seven career starts despite often showing good early speed, used off-the-pace tactics on Tuesday to give "George Nap" his third $50+ horse of the meet. Trainer/driver Fern Paquet Jr. also got in on the Tuesday longshot fun by handling Embassy Seelster as she came home first to the tune of $53.60, giving Pocono its tenth card of the meet during which two winners paid $50+. Napolitano, the track's leading driver both all-time and this season, had five winners on the Tuesday Pocono card, and his brother Anthony visited Victory Lane three times. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE, PA - Mike Simons stands on the doorstep of the milestone of 4000 career driving victories, as he won three races on Monday, including two at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. In the 15,840 feet his horses covered in those three winning miles for Simons, the aggregate margin of victory was about 40 inches - and with each race, the margin drew tighter. Mike won in the afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia with trotter D'Dream for trainer Neal Ehrhart, going by by a neck. At Pocono Monday night, Simons bookended the card with a pair of "Tom-trained horses," taking the first with the Tom Gummerson-conditioned trotter El Pescadoro by a head, and then the last with pacer Griffon Hanover for trainer Tom Fanning by - you guessed it, a nose. (Maybe Simons will dead-heat for win for #4000.) The 57-year-old Simons, a resident of nearby Nazareth PA, has won 100 or more races every year since 2002 in a sulky career that started in the early eighties. Mike led the driver win standings at Pocono in 2002, and in fact was only the second driver to win 200 races in a single season at Pocono, behind Walter Case Jr. His best year statistically came in 2007, when he won a total of 274 races and $2.9 million. Simons is known as "The Trot Man" because he seems to have a special affinity for getting success out of horses of the gait, and sometimes at large mutuels. Unfortunately from the standpoint of Pocono, his "base track" for many years, when Simons gets win #4000, it won't be at the mountain oval, as The Downs will not be back in action until Saturday. Simons has a drive with Ask Queenie, a 9-2 proposition, in the F&M pacing feature at Monticello this afternoon, and then at Yonkers tonight he has five horses listed, the one with the best chance of winning being the trotter Eldorado Of Gold S, listed at 7-2 in the fourth race. His next slated action beyond Tuesday is Thursday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

CHESTER, PA - A special Monday afternoon card at Harrah's Philadelphia featured $200,000 worth of stakes action in John Simpson Sr. events for three-year-old colts, with horses of both gaits contesting three divisions. First to the track were the pacers, with the Somebeachsomewhere gelding No Easy Day finding the race living up to his name but still prevailing in 1:51.1. Driver David Miller quarter-moved with the winner past early leader Lyons Steel going to the 26.3 opener, then got a rest on the lead to a 56 half. Soon afterwards Shadow Cat began a long grinding challenge that lasted past the 1:22.4 3/4s and all the way to the wire, with Lyons Steel coming up the inside to threaten, but No Easy Day held his ground gamely, a half length to the good of Lyons Steel and ¾ of a length ahead of the resilient Shadow Cat, in winning for trainer Ron Burke and owner Thomas Dillon. Driver Miller and trainer Burke reteamed successfully in the second Simpson stakes section with another altered son of Somebeachsomewhere, Wheels On Fire, who won for the ninth time in 15 seasonal starts for owner W.J. Donovan. Miller put Wheels On Fire behind Canadian invader Talbotcreekwhiskey, who strung the field out with early numbers of 26.4 and 54.1 then battled with first-up Wild Bill to a 1:22 ¾. Through the stretch the main battle came down to Wheels On Fire and Macadoodledoo, a fellow 8-5 choice who went wide from second-over, with the winner getting a neck decision in 1:50.4. Somebeachsomewhere's completed a siring sweep of the Simpson pacing action when the gelding Terror Atthe Beach got a nifty steer by driver George Napolitano Jr. to win the third cut in 1:51. Sitting third-inside while Winston set fractions of 26.4 and 55 and then was joined by first-over favorite Rockapelo down the back, Terror Atthe Beach was able to slip out third-over behind JK Wildfire as the pocket horse collapsed to the 1:23.1 ¾, then kept digging in through the lane, just nailing Rockapelo on the line by a nose, with JK Wildfire in third and Winston in fourth within a length on the money. Trainer Chris Oakes, fresh off making a place in history with Homicide Hunter on Saturday at Lexington, conditions the winner of $110,335 for Chuck Pompey, Howard Taylor (also a big winner at Lexington), and Edwin Gold. On the trot, Mississippi Storm was the first feature horse to Harrah's winners circle, taking a new mark of 1:53.2 while winning in stakes company for the third straight time. The Cantab Hall gelding was limbed most of the 27.2 quarter to gain control for driver Andrew McCarthy, strolled to a 57.1 half, shook off outside pressure past the 1:24.2 quarter, then stayed in command against late inside closers to win by 1 1/2 lengths over Lindy's Big Bang, who photoed Scirocco Rob for the deuce. Tom Fanning conditions the winner of $171,946 for owner Joseph Smith. Driver Eric Carlson continued his amazing streak of bringing in longshot winners, especially trotters, when he roared through the stretch with Chucky De Vie as the Charlie De Vie colt took a new mark of 1:55. Carlson worked out a second-over trip from last, tipped wide at headstretch, and came his last quarter in 28 to win a four-across-the-track finish by a half length for trainer Hermann Heitmann (the original developer of Foiled Again) and the ownership of Joie De Vie Farm LLC and Paul Nigito. Carlson has now had five of the last eleven $50+ winners at Philly (all but one trotters) and three of the last four, and he began his current defy-the-tote-board run by guiding trotters Bold Goddess ($116.20) and Rentier ($81.00) home in successive races on September 5. The third division went to New York Sire Stakes champion Helpisontheway, who engaged in a long and bitter struggle with pacesetting Rich And Miserable before emerging a neck the better in 1:53.1. Tim Tetrick moved the victorious son of Chapter Seven uncovered from midpack at the 3/8 and reached the leader after he had notched early fractions of 27.1 and 57.1. The battle was on through a pair of 28 quarters the rest of the way, with Helpisontheway going by late to run his 2018 record to 14-8-4-0-$485,808 and his lifetime bankroll to $522,194 for trainer Linda Toscano and the ownership of the Camelot Stable Inc., The Bay's Stable LLC, and Little E LLC (the last-named of which perhaps not needing a plane after his day to remember on Sunday at Lexington). From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The five-year-old Mister Big gelding Just Toyin With Ya tried new tactics in the $13,000 featured harness racing pace at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Monday night - go fast, then go even faster, then go faster yet - and they worked to perfection, as the pacer stormed to a 1:49.4 victory, lowering his mark by over two seconds. Driver Eric Carlson had the pedal to the metal early with Just Toyin With Ya and laid down winners-over-type fractions of 26.2, 54.2, and 1:21.2, opening a four length lead going around the final turn and carrying his speed to the wire for a 6 1/2 length tally over You Got Trumped, as the winner certainly lived up to his name in the estimation of those trailing him across the wire. Unraced at both two and three and with only one show in two starts at age four, Just Toyin With Ya seems ready to make up for the lost time with this breakthrough tally. Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC own the winning pacer, who likely won't be racing for an $18,000 tag next time behind the gate. From PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE, PA - Two AM won his second consecutive race at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Sunday evening, overcoming the outside post eight to capture the $21,500 featured trot on the card in 1:52.4. Driver Tim Buter tucked in midpack early with the altered son of Muscle Massive, then raced the last half with second-over cover. Two AM then put in a big late surge to defeat favored Prairie Fortune, who was coming on from the pocket, by ¾ of a length, with ABC Muscles Boy another neck back after a third-inside trip. Two AM, who made an early name for himself by winning his PA Stallion Series Championship in 2016 in a still-record 1:55.3, boosted his lifetime bankroll to $287,936 with Sunday's triumph. Todd Buter conditions the winner for the Gene Oldford Farms LLC, Lynette Buter, William Fuhs, and Carol Fuhs. Driver Jim Taggart Jr. claimed possession of the outright lead in both categories of the "Leading Longshot Driver at Pocono" chase by reining Raising Kerckhaert to victory in the sophomore's 23rd lifetime start while paying $101.40 for a $2 win ticket. Taggart, who was Pocono's overall winningest driver during the 2001 season, now has six winners at the 2018 meet who have paid $50+, and a pair who topped the $100 figure. Raising Kerckhaert's trainer/owner Austin Brubacker also has his claim to $100 winner fame - in 2016 at Harrah's, his trainee Marion Coca paid over triple figures to win three times during the year, including in successive weeks in late summer. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

CHESTER, PA - On a special Friday night card of racing at Harrah's Philadelphia, the Shadow Play mare Skippin By was used hard to get the early lead, but she showed in the last quarter she had ample energy in reserve, taking the $18,000 featured pace for distaffs in 1:50.1. Skippin By was hustled out of the gate by driver George Napolitano Jr., as both Monica Gallagher and Hold It Hanover also left the switch with alacrity. After "Hold It" backed off to a 3-tuck at the 1/8, Skippin By pressed her case and got the lead after working to the quarter in 27. But after midsplits of 55.3 and 1:23, Skippin By powered off from her rivals with a 27.1 kicker, winning by 2 3/4 lengths over Monica Gallagher and raising her lifetime tally to $868,409 for trainer Nick Surick and Cornerstone Stock Farm. The eight-year-old mare Regil Elektra recorded her 48th lifetime victory, sending her earnings to $1,073,923, with a victory in 1:52.1, last half 55.3, in the $14,500 distaff pace co-feature. Driver Tony Morgan moved from the pocket with the victorious daughter of Mach Three in front of the stands, getting around early leader Future Headlines easily, then dashed home from there to be a 1 1/2 length winner over that rival for trainer Keith Armer and the Fred Monteleone Estate. Regil Elektra was also the fifth in a consecutive line of horses who paid $6.00 or less - without being the favorite! Harrah's will pick up the action again on Sunday at 2:05 p.m., with a $25,000 winners-over pace for females heading a strong card (that might complement the Futurity Day card at Lexington nicely for simulcast fans). There will also be a special live offering of racing on Columbus Day Monday at 12:25 p.m., with over $200,000 on the line for John Simpson Sr. stakes series three-year-old colts of both gaits. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER, PA - Deep Impact and Impacter, half-brothers out of the Yankee Glide mare Glide Power, may have close genetic backgrounds, but the routes they took in winning the twin $14,500 featured trots at Harrah's Philadelphia Thursday couldn't have been more different. The Donato Hanover five-year-old gelding Deep Impact was first to race, and driver George Napolitano Jr. pointed the classdropper right to the front, getting the quarter in 27.3, then resting to a 58.2 half before reigniting the speed. Deep Impact reached the ¾ in 1:26.1 en route to a 1:55 victory, three lengths clear at the finish, for trainer Ãke Svanstedt and the Van Camp Trotting Corporation. A year younger than his half-brother, Impacter had no straight shot on the lead to Victory Lane. Trainer/driver Vince Copeland tucked the altered son of Muscle Hill third in a 27 opener, kept him in past a 56.2 half, then backed him out to third-over position well before the 1:25.2 ¾ clocking. When the horses in front of him didn't gain quickly through the turn, Copeland sent Impacter four-wide into the lane, and he got to the wire first in 1:55.4, ¾ of a length ahead of Shady Mccoy, for owner David D. Miller. The Friday card at Philly will be an evening one, starting at 6:30 p.m. After the usual Sunday action beginning at 2:05 p.m., there will be a special live card on Columbus Day, Monday, October 8 at 12:25 p.m., with over $200,000 in stakes action in the John Simpson Sr. series, with three-year-old colts of both gaits each contesting three divisions. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER, PA - The Somebeachsomewhere mare Dr J's Kiss, sixth at the ¾ pole, swung four-wide at the head of the stretch and went right on by in taking the $17,000 featured distaff pace on Wednesday at Harrah's Philadelphia in 1:52.4. Driver Simon Allard, guiding the Joe Pavia Jr. trainee for the first time, followed third-over in a 27.1 backstretch flow that took its toll on both pacesetting favorite Jewels Forreal and first-over Dolphin Island, then swung three-wide behind second-over Rob Them Blind in the middle of the far turn and wider yet off the final curve. Rob Them Blind made the lead in the stretch but couldn't withstand the late rush of Dr J's Kiss, as she won by a length while breaking the six-figure barrier in lifetime earnings for co-owners Pavia, Steven Held, and Dr. Bridgette Jablonsky. The Muscle Mass sophomore gelding Yuge, three-wide most of the first bend and not on top until coming off that bend, maintained control through the rest of the mile to win the day's $16,000 top trot in 1:55.3. Yuge raised his lifetime bankroll to $127,969 for trainer Ed Lohmeyer, co-owner with Ed Lohmeyer Jr. and Dr. Patty Hogan, completing a win for veterinarians in both the Wednesday Philly features. As for driver George Napolitano Jr., the win was one of three on the day for him, including the card's only two favorites - in the first race and the last race. Racing resumes tomorrow at 12:25 p.m., but Philly's Friday card will begin at 6:30 p.m. After the usual Sunday action beginning at 2:05 p.m., there will be a special live card on Columbus Day, Monday, October 8 at 12:25 p.m., with over $200,000 in stakes action in the John Simpson Sr. series, with three-year-old colts of both gaits each contesting three divisions. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia  

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The meet's leading driver, George Napolitano Jr. , ended a highly successful September with six victories on the Sunday night card at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Four of the wins came with horses from the Chris Oakes stable, including a 1:51.2 triumph with Rockstar Angel A in the $21,500 distaff feature pace. The early pace in the top event was creaking, as Great Northeast Series champion Bettorhaveanother zipped away from the outside post seven, got to the lead in 28.4, and then reached the half in 57.3 (about average for "nw3" trotters here). The tempo picked up dramatically at that point, though, as favored Penpal, who paced her own third quarter in 26.2 while winning last week, came up with a roar uncovered and was quickly on top just past the midpoint, scorching to the ¾ in 1:23.4 - a third split in 26.1. Rockstar Angel A and "George Nap" pulled from third on the far turn, with countrymate Don't Think Twice A, making her U.S. debut, moving out behind her, while Bettorhaveanother went to the Pocono Pike to challenge Penpal. The quarter of mares went at each other through the stretch, with Bettorhaveanother gaining a short lead midstretch, only to see Rockstar Angel A go by with 100 feet to go, then hold off Dont Think Twice A (who paced her own last half in 52.4) by a neck. Bettorhaveanother was third, another neck back; Penpal fading to fourth. Rockstar Angel A, a daughter of Rocknroll Hanover owned by the Northfolk Racing Stable, was imported from Down Under this year, and now has seven wins in her 2018 campaign, with $196,002 in career earnings. Napolitano just missed a seventh win in the $17,500 co-feature trot, as Elysium Lindy, who was racing second behind favorite Dream Baby Dream, inherited the lead on the last bend when that one went offstride, but Tyson, following the top two horses, had enough punch in the stretch to get a head decision in 1:53.4. Eric Carlson had sulky duties behind the Donato Hanover gelding, who is trained by Ed Gannon Jr., co-owner with Frank Canzone, and Tyson raised his career share of the purse to $200,300. George Napolitano Jr. had three wins earlier in the day at Harrah's Philadelphia, overhauling previous meet leader Tim Tetrick in that track's victory column, and thus combined with his six wins at Pocono had nine visits to Victory Lane on the day. "George Nap" had 90 triumphs during the month of September, with 2/3 of those coming at the mountain oval and the other 1/3 at the other end of the Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

CHESTER, PA - Two-year-old colts were featured in over $190,000 of John Simpson Sr. stakes action at Harrah's Philadelphia, with Yonkers' leading driver, Jason Bartlett, taking a rare excursion to metro Philly and winning the first division of the colt action on both the trot and the pace. Captain Malicious dominated his division of the pacing contests, going right to the front for Bartlett and posting fractions of 27.4, 57.2, and 1:25.4 en route to a ¾ length victory over pocketsitting Meetmeatthedance in 1:53.4. A winner of his Pennsylvania Sire Stakes consolation event, the victorious son of Captaintreacherous - Silky is trained by Ray Schnittker, who is also co-owner with Dr. John Egloff, John Frisch, and Max Hempt. Speaking of leading drivers - George Napolitano Jr. tied Tim Tetrick at the top of the Philly drivers standings with his 175th win of the local season, going wire-to-wire in the second division of pacing colts with Hervey Hanover in 1:53. After early fractions of 27.2 and 56.2, the Somebeachsomewhere - Here Music Rocks blitzed a 27.2 third quarter to open up a good distance on favored Southwind Ozzi, then held off that one's steady late charge by a head. Andrew Harris handles conditioning duties for owner Brad Gray. The Russell Hanover - Applique Hanover gelding Aflame Hanover was the fastest two-year-old on the Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes circuit this summer by virtue of a track record 1:56.4 win at Gratz, and today he showed he could translate his top form to pari-mutuel stakes conditions, heading right down the road and storming home in 55.2 to reduce his mark to 1:52.2 while defeating favored Jo Jo's Place by 1¾ lengths. The baby's next start for driver Tony Schadel and trainer/wife Linda, who are also his co-owners, should also be at a pari-mutuel oval - his Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes Championship on Saturday afternoon, October 6 at The Meadows. Prior to his trotting event the Crazed - Pyschotherapist gelding Our White Knight had had six seconds and three thirds in nine career starts while earning $119,079, including a third in the New York Sire Stakes final, but Bartlett was finally able to deliver him to the winners circle, using wire-to-wire tactics in setting fractions of 28.4, 59.4, and 1:29, then withstanding potential pocket rocket Jason's Camden by 1¼ lengths in 1:58. John Butenschoen is the trainer of Our White Knight, and David Arrenholz is the owner. The Cantab Hall - Upside Hanover colt Klutzy became the only horse to win in the Liberty Bell stakes series last week and then come back with a Simpson victory this afternoon when he set fractions of 29, 58.4, and 1:28 on a clear lead for driver Eric Carlson, then won handily in 1:57.1. Julie Miller is the conditioner of the sharp colt for Stroy Inc. That victory completed all of today's stakes winners using the engine as a means to victory. FINISHING LINES - Driver Eric Carlson had earlier solidified his position as Philly's leading longshot handler, winning the eighth race with Hold It Hanover while paying $51.40 for his fifth $50+ winner of the meet, putting him one ahead of Brett Miller. Carlson is also tied for the distinction of having the most $100+ victories in 2018 at Philly: between him and Miller, they have piloted four of the six triple-figure win horses at the riverside oval.  

CHESTER, PA - The John Simpson Sr. stakes series, honoring the late Hall of Fame horseman and executive, got underway at Harrah's Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon with two-year-old harness racing filly action, with over $190,000 in combined purses for three divisions of pacers and two of trotters. In the first pace, the Well Said- Lady's Portrait filly Renaissance Lady K was sent to the front by driver George Napolitano Jr. before the 27.3 quarter, then the pair got to the half in 56.3. Favored Philly Hanover launched uncovered from fourth at that point, and made some headway before the leader got to the ¾ in 1:24.1; the chalk then continued to reduce the margin through the stretch, but Renaissance Lady K held gamely to post a neck decision while lowering her mark four seconds to 1:52.1. Norm Parker trains the winner for veteran owner Robert Key. In the other sidewheeling division, Rockn Philly, who did not have a good outing upon returning to her "home track" for a Liberty Bell contest last week, definitely brought her "A" game today while winning in 1:53.4. Victor Kirby sent the daughter of A Rocknroll Dance - Philadelphia to the lead after the 27.4, rested to the half in 57.2, and then powered home in 56.2 - 27.4 while unthreatened, boosting her earnings to $118.038 for trainer Jim King Jr. and the ownership of CC Racing LLC and Jo Ann Looney-King. Turning to the trotters: The "Trot Man," driver Mike Simons, showed he knows 5/8-mile track geometry in the first section, going out from the rail with Pilgrims Lass against two outside leavers, forcing one to tuck before letting favored Navarone Hanover go past the 28.2 quarter, and then racing in the golden seat through middle splits of 58.3 and 1:27.4. As first-over Big Weezy grinded to a short lead headstretch, Simons ducked to the inside, and gradually his Muscle Mass - Goodtimesstarthere filly erased Big Weezy's narrow advantage and got to the wire a neck to the good in a personal best of 1:57.1. Pilgrims Lass has now won two straight for trainer Scott Andrews and owner Edward Andrews. The Donato Hanover - Glide About miss American Kosmos, 3-for-4 lifetime and the 1-9 favorite of the crowd, found herself having to take a two-hole trip behind determined 38-1 shot Sigilwig, who set fractions of 28.4, 58.3, and 1:27.3 in their cut. At the ¾ pole driver George Brennan eased American Kosmos to the outside, and she trotted nicely down the center of the track to win in 1:57.1, at the wire a length ahead of Meadowbranch Vicki, with the gallant Sigilwig holding for third. Julie Miller trains the quick filly, whose only loss came when she made a break, for owners Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld, and Dr. David Goodrow. Stella Jane, looped early and out well past the 28.2 quarter before getting the lead, went on with fractions of 58.4 and 1:27.3, then had enough to withstand the horse that parked her early, Southwind Percy, by a neck in 1:57 after a stretch battle in the last division. George Napolitano Jr., getting a stakes win on both gaits, guided the daughter of Crazed - Naughty Nana for trainer John Butenschoen and owners Crawford Farms Racing. FINISHING LINES - With a carryover from yesterday in the Pick 4 pool, this afternoon's quad-win bet drew a lot of attention, with its 50-cent minimum and 15% takeout. Horses paying $7.60, $13.00, and $2.20 in the first three legs didn't really hint at a mega-payoff, but when $64.60 winner Inner Peace nosed out favorite He's Gone in the bet's final contest, a 50-cent ticket was worth $7441.90. (Had the favorite held, the payoff still would have been a generous $676.50.) From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER, PA - Trotter Century Empress and pacer Uffizi emerged victorious in the $16,000 featured events on the Wednesday afternoon harness racing card at Harrah's Philadelphia and New Zealander Dexter Dunn had the hots hands with four driving winners. The Donato Hanover sophomore filly Century Empress took a new mark of 1:55.4 in the spotlight trotting event. Trainer/driver Jeff Gregory had her in perfect stalking position behind the first-over Muscle Fashion, then caught that foe by a half-length for the ownership of Jeff Gregory Inc., Dumain Haven Farm, and Carlo Lattinelli. Uffizi, a son of American Ideal, opened up a big lead down the backstretch and through the far turn in the pacing contest, and although favored Torrin Hanover methodically reduced the margin in the stretch, Uffizi was still clear by 1 3/4 lengths at the finish in 1:51.2 for trainer Chris Ryder and owners Robert Mondillo and Craig Henderson. Uffizi was guided by New Zealand sensation Dexter Dunn, who wound up his afternoon with four driving triumphs. Dunn has already worked his way up to 14th in wins for the yearlong driving statistics at Philly, and his local UDR is hovering in the .300 range - and may go even higher as local trainers grow to appreciative his aggressive style and impressive results. The next two days, Harrah's Philadelphia welcomes two-year-olds contesting their action in the John Simpson Sr. stakes series, honoring the late Hall of Fame horseman and Hanover Shoe Farms executive. Fillies will be in the spotlight on Thursday, with colts featured on Friday; both days will have action on both gaits. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The Mach Three mare Monica Gallagher, who was away from the races for three months in spring and early summer, has worked her way back to top form, as she showed on Tuesday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono by winning the $17,500 featured distaff pace, her first visit to Victory Lane since April 26. Matt Kakaley got Monica Gallagher away quickly, making the lead after the quick 26.2 opener on a "good +1" track, then yielded to race favorite Skippin By near the 55.2 half to sit a pocket journey. Truth And Liberty, second-over past the 1:22.4 ¾ pole, made it a three-horse chase to the finish, with Monica Gallagher having the most late to win in 1:51.3 by a head, with the same margin separating Truth And Liberty in second and Skippin By in third. Monica Gallagher has shown herself to be usually right around the big money in her brief career: in 16 starts this year she has a 7-5-0 record, and in double the starts lifetime she has a 12-9-3 scorecard, good for $124,631. Ron Burke conditions the four-year-old for Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Earlier, some confusion around the far turn led to a longshot bonanza. 3-1 third choice Lounatic pulled the pocket from behind pacesetting Michelle's Pride late in the backstretch, but then went erratically around the far turn, first squeezing Actress Hanover inside, then, while trying to correct, bearing out into the path of the second- and third-over, Linda Lace Hanover (8-5 favorite) and Under The Hood (9-5) respectively, shoving them wide and effectively taking them out of contention. Actress Hanover, at 69-1, went up into the pocket, then to the Pocono Pike and charged to the lead - returning a $140.20 win mutuel. Pacesetting Michelle's Pride was 42-1, and she was just edged for second by an unaffected horse, 10-1 Typhoon, resulting in $2-equivalent gimmick payoffs of $1219.20 for the 4-7 Exacta, $2111.40 for a 4-7-ALL Trifecta, and a 4-7-ALL-ALL Superfecta of $18281.60 - on which there were two fortunate 10-cent ticketholders. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The Mach Three mare Intoview recorded her third straight victory for owner/trainer Gilbert Garcia-Owen while winning the $14,000 distaff claiming handicap pacing feature in 1:52.4 on Tuesday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. On a night where nine of fourteen chalks prevailed, Intoview and driver George Napolitano Jr. were not the crowd's favorite - at 9-5, they were held slightly behind 7-5 LK's Nancy Lee, handled by George's brother Anthony. LK's Nancy Lee challenged early leader Rosy Outlook after the 27.2 quarter, reaching the half in 56.2 and then bracing for the first-over move from Intoview. Intoview got to within a head of the leader by the 1:24.1 clocking with a quarter to go, then continued the attack through the lane, with pocketsitting Rosy Outlook making it a three-horse contest to the wire. Intoview proved most photogenic, a head ahead of LK's Nancy Lee, who held that same margin over Rosy Outlook. The victorious sharp mare now has earnings of $150,301. In a $13,000 co-feature, the Well Said gelding Well Played Out followed advancing cover, then paced his own last quarter in 27.2 to catch that cover, Bag Pipe Major, by ¾ of a length while lowering his mark a full second to 1:53.1. Tyler Buter guided the winner, whose $15.40 mutuel was the longest of the night, for trainer Alex Kavoleff and owners Douglas Alexander and Bruce Areman. George Napolitano Jr. won five races on the Tuesday card, including four of the final five, giving him 70 victories to date in the month of May: 47 of them at Pocono and the other 23 at Philly. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE, PA - In a six-horse featured trot where four of the contestants were with a head at the wire, the Donato Hall gelding Boffin proved most photogenic to take the $21,500 Sunday headliner at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in 1:53.4. Anthony Napolitano sent Crazshana around Elysium Lindy and driver Matt Kakaley before the 26.4 quarter, then got a breather to the 56.3 as Anthony's brother George started up uncovered with Boffin. Boffin and Crazshana, both 7-5 choices under the guidance of the Napolitanos, were virtually inseparable from the 5/8 on, through and past the 1:24.2 ¾ into the stretch, where they were joined by Elysium Lindy and third-in ABC Muscles Boy, both hustling up the inside. At the finish Boffin got a head up on the next threesome, who were noses apart and gave the judges some work before declaring Elysium Lindy second, Crazshana third, and ABC Muscles Boy fourth. For Boffin, the win drove his victory rate to 50% for 12 starts this year and gave him his 46th lifetime victory, with career earnings of $532,237. Anette Lorentzon conditions the game trotter, and she co-owns him with ACL Stuteri AB and Kjell Johansson. (And the other two starters? Tyson was second-over, gapped his cover a bit, then closed to be a half-length off at the wire for fifth; Deep Impact, who got away sixth from the outside post and was last at every call, was beaten two lengths, timed in 1:54.1 - and despite that was no richer re-entering the paddock than when he left it.) From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

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