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WASHINGTON, PA, July 23, 2016 -- Pure Country continued her relentless march to a second straight harness racing divisional title, capturing her fifth consecutive victory in Saturday's Pennsylvania Sires Stake action at The Meadows, part of the Adios eliminations card. Shesasmokinlady took the other division in the $159,350 event for 3-year-old filly pacers known as the Romola Hanover. Pure Country won all 10 starts at 2 en route to her Dan Patch Award. While she's lost three of nine outings this year, the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Western Montana appears to have elevated her game to a new level, with victories in the finals of the Fan Hanover and the Lynch and two straight PASS splits. "I've never driven a filly like her," winning driver Brett Miller said. "I don't know if I've ever driven a colt like her. She might be the best horse I've ever driven. To race at the top level like this every week and be that good -- it's amazing. She's one of the smartest fillies I've ever sat behind, and she has the heart of a champion. The couple times I got beat with her, it was probably my fault." In the Romola Hanover, Pure Country grabbed the lead with a quarter-pole move, easily thwarted the first-over challenge of I Said Diamonds and defeated the pocket-sitting Darlinonthebeach by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:50. Shezarealdeal earned show. Jimmy Takter trains Pure Country, who now boasts $1,276,610 in career earnings, for Diamond Creek Racing. Shesasmokinlady also made the front past the quarter for trainer/driver Ray Paver and owner/breeder Iris Horowitz and had just enough in the tank to hold off Newborn Sassy by a nose in 1:50.4. Call Me Queen Be completed the ticket. "I figured if I got away third today, I wasn't sitting," said Paver of Shesasmokinlady, who now has $144,795 in her bankroll. "She usually doesn't get tired, but she looks for a horse to race. A horse never really got to her until late." Although she may reach the PASS final or consolation leg, Paver said a stakes payments snafu has left Shesasmokinlady with only one definite stake engagement -- the Keystone Classic at The Meadows. $100,000 PA Stallion Series -- 3-Year-Old Filly Pacers Saturday's program also featured five divisions of this event; as with the other stakes on the card, this one became "Miller Time." Miller won two splits, giving him four stakes victories on the day, while trainer Michael Hall enjoyed a stake double. The highlight for Miller and Hall was the 1:51.1 win by Dismissal, which lowered the stake record of 1:51.3 previously held by Icommandmyspirt and matched earlier in the day by A List Hanover. Hall owns Dismissal, a daughter of Western Terror-Her Mattjesty. The other three splits went to Terror at Night, Kryptos and Square Dancer. A List Hanover saw her stake record fall, but she turned in a huge performance, challenging first over for longer that winning driver Dan Rawlings intended. "The more I grabbed her, the more her gait became less than perfect," Rawlings said. "So I let her go as fast and as far as she could." Gingertreescarlett finished second, 3 lengths back, with Nip's Beach Girl third. Hall trains and leases A List Hanover, a daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Allamerican Nadia. Terror At Night also converted a first-over trip to victory, edging by early leader Hug A Dragoness by 1/2 length in 1:51.4, a lifetime mark. Donna's Beach completed the ticket. "She's one of the laziest fillies I've ever driven," Miller said. "You have to make her do her work. When she made the front, she thought the race was over. If you're on the front, it's not as bad, but if you're passing somebody, she pulls up as soon as she gets by." The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

There were three divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes races for harness racing 2-year-old filly pacers on Thursday afternoon (July 21) at Harrah's Philadelphia, each going for a purse of just over $61,000. In the first division, it was Dylan Davis trainee Gigi From Fiji (Corey Callahan) picking up the win. The daughter of Ponder drafted patiently in the 3-hole before launching her bid. She hooked up in a stretch duel with Somesleazetoplease (Brett Miller), and was able to get the nose in front, stopping the clock in 1:54. It was her second win of her career out of three starts. She is owned by Robert Cooper, J & T Silva Stables, and driver Corey Callahan. She paid $17.80 to win. In the second division, it was Bettor's Up closing fast up the inside for the score. The daughter of Bettor's Delight was shuffled back, but was able to find room late to out close the pocket sitting Idyllic Beach (Yannick Gingras) to win in a time of 1:53.3 for the connections of Bradley Grant and Michelle McEneny. Scott McEneny is the trainer. It was her third victory in four career starts, and one of five driving wins on the afternoon for driver Dave Miller. She paid $5.80 to win. The third and final division was won by the pocket-sitting Agent Q (Dave Miller). The daughter of Western Terror got to the front, but yielded to the brushing Caviart Ally (Andrew McCarthy) past the quarter pole. She closed in a stout :27.4 to get the job done, winning by three lengths in 1:53.3. It was the first career win for the Aaron Lambert trainee, who is owned by the team of Scharf, Rochetti, Rochetti Jr. and Muscara. She paid $3.60 to win. Michael Bozich

WASHINGTON, PA, July 20, 2016 -- Fear The Dragon captured his second straight Pennsylvania Sires Stake win Wednesday at The Meadows when he scorched a mile in 1:50.3, matching the track record for harness racing freshman pacing colts. The $190,272 event for 2-year-old colt and gelding pacers, known as the Albatross, was contested over four divisions with Western Joe, Downbytheseaside and Normandy Beach taking the other splits. Yannick Gingras won a pair of divisions with Western Joe and Normandy Beach while David Miller and trainer Brian Brown teamed to take the other two splits. Fear The Dragon dropped into the pocket from the gate, but Miller had him out and moving before the half. Emerald Highlands Farm's son of Dragon Again-Armbro Cinnamon had little trouble defeating the rallying Boogie Shuffle by 2 lengths, with RJP third. "I could have sat in the two hole," Miller said, "but he was the heavy favorite, and I thought I'd go ahead and move him back to the front in case somebody came at us real hard. He gets over the ground real easy." The time matched I'm Some Graduate's track record established last year and shattered the stake mark of 1:51.1 set last year by Manhattan Beach. It's the fastest mile this year by a 2-year-old colt pacer on a five-eighths-mile track. Miller and Brown were at it again with Downbytheseaside, who zipped to the lead from post 6 and triumphed in 1:51, 1-1/2 lengths better than Huntsville. Bettor's Pick completed the ticket. "He was a little keyed up behind the gate," Miller reported. "He was hitting the bike a little bit behind the gate; that made it worse. He relaxed once he got to the lead." Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco and Richard Lombardo campaign Downbytheseaside, a son of Somebeachsomewhere-Sprig Hanover. Western Joe quarter-poled to the top and drew off to prevail by 4 lengths in 1:53 for trainer Christopher Choate and owner Anthony Ruggeri. Emptythetill was second while Southwind Jenson earned show. "I wanted to control it with easy fractions," Gingras said of the son of Western Ideal-Ante Fay. "I figured I'd take my chances from there. He was really strong finishing. In the last eighth, he really exploded home." In the $20,000 Winners Over 10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, Tall Cotton parried the first-over bid of his stablemate, See The Wind, and defeated him by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:53.1. Tamarind was third. Gingras drove for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Edwin Gold and Howard Taylor. The 10-year-old Revenue S-B Cor Peatra gelding pushed his career bankroll to $757,541. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

WILKES-BARRE PA - Five divisions of the harness racing Pennsylvania Sire Stakes two-year-old trotting fillies were featured in their second preliminary round Tuesday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, with all five cuts producing new lifetime marks, and the division pitting three of the first round winners providing the fastest victory, a 1:54.4 by That's All Moni.   The victorious daughter of Cantab Hall had to grind uncovered against favored Fine Tuned Lady, but she came her last quarter in 27.4 to overhaul the chalk, who had made the lead in front of the stands, by a neck on the money. Yannick Gingras again successfully teamed with Hall of Fame trainer Jimmy Takter to keep That's All Moni undefeated after a pair of starts for the ownership of Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, and Al Libfeld.   The other repeat winner was also a daughter of Cantab Hall, Dangle Then Deke, who swung three-wide headstretch under the guidance of Tim Tetrick and stormed her own last split in 28.1 to win by 1¾ lengths over Voxy, who rallied from the pocket. The 6-5 favorite kept her record unblemished after three starts for trainer Dirk Simpson and owner James Bafia.   Sire Explosive Matter also had two progeny among the quintet of Pocono feature winners Tuesday. The first was Chezatter, who was a pocket rocket with a 56.2 last half in her to get a neck up on pacesetting Sienna Hanover in 1:55.2. David Miller handled the winner for trainer Trond Smedshammer and the Purple Haze Stable LLC.   Also an Explosive Matter-sired winner was Yooper, who went her second half in 57 while uncovered to stop the clock in 1:56, 1½ lengths ahead on the horse on her back the last half, Donato Fashion. Matt Kakaley got the driving call from trainer Dean Eckley for owner/breeder Clifford Grundy.   The only other favorite besides Dangle To Deke to win in the event (though's Yooper's $8.20 was the biggest price of the bunch) was the horse to follow "Deke" into the winners circle, the Muscle Massive filly Treviso, who was parked past the ¼ for command, then put in a 28.2 last quarter to win in 1:56.3, extended to win by a nose over the game first-over Princess Aurora. Treviso is trained and driven by Charlie Norris for owners Carrie Norris and Klis Brothers Stable.   FINISHING LINES - Driver Anthony Napolitano, sidelined through injury since a May 31 far turn racing mishap at The Downs, is back and ready for sulky duty, scheduled to drive in qualifiers here tomorrow (Wednesday) and during the next purse card here, scheduled for Saturday. Anthony was second in the Pocono dashwinning derby behind his brother George at the time of the accident, and he was also doing well in expanding his regular sulkysitting to The Meadowlands and Yonkers.   PHHA / Pocono

Charlie Iannazzo is optimistic about the future of his 2-year-old male pacer Huntsville, but knows that success at the harness racing division's top level won't come easily. "So far, this guy looks like a monster," said Iannazzo, who bred Huntsville with trainer Ray Schnittker and owns the colt with Schnittker, Ted Gewertz, and Steve Arnold. "He just looks like the real deal. "But there are a lot of good horses with a lot of good trainers out there. It's a very tough division. He's going to be in a tough race every race. That's why we're taking it one race at a time." Huntsville's next race is Wednesday in a $47,468 division of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes at The Meadows. And it looks like a tough race. Five of the six horses in the field already have won a race and as a group the six horses have combined to finish first or second in nine of 11 starts. Tim Tetrick will drive Huntsville for Schnittker. Huntsville, who debuted with a second-place finish by a length to Filibuster Hanover in a division of the Pennsylvania All-Stars and then won by a neck over Downbytheseaside in 1:51.4 in a sire stakes split at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, is the 5-2 morning line favorite. Jimmy Takter-trained Blood Line, this season's fastest 2-year-old with a mark of 1:51.3, is the 3-1 second choice followed by Brian Brown's Downbytheseaside at 7-2 and Ron Burke's Filibuster Hanover at 4-1. Huntsville is a son of Somebeachsomewhere out of the mare Wild West Show. He is a full brother to stakes-winners Cowboy Terrier and Stevensville. The family also includes stakes-winner Northern Luck. "He's big and strong," Iannazzo said of Hunstville, whose training regimen, like other Schnittker horses, includes swimming. "In his last start, Timmy took him off the gate and then with a big brush circled the field (on his way to a :27 third quarter). He looked like a freight train because of his size. "He's just a tremendously well-built and conformed colt. He's racing like he looks the part. I'm very encouraged." Huntsville's stakes schedule includes the Bluegrass, Breeders Crown, Governor's Cup, International Stallion, and Keystone Classic. He was eligible to last weekend's Sheppard Pace at Yonkers, but Iannazzo said the colt was not entered to focus on his upcoming sire stakes slate. As it turned out, another horse from the Schnittker Stable, Summer Side, won the Sheppard. Wednesday's four Pennsylvania Sire Stakes divisions also feature early-season speedsters The Wall (mark of 1:51.4), Fear The Dragon (1:52.2), and Beach House (1:52.4). The Wall, another Takter trainee, is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the fourth division, where Rich Gillock's Beach House is the 7-2 second choice. Brown's Fear The Dragon is the 2-1 pick in the second division while Christopher Choate's Western Joe is the 5-2 favorite in the opening division. "With the talent of the 2-year-old pacing colts in Pennsylvania, it's going to take an exceptional horse to outperform them," Iannazzo said. "Right now, we're very positive. I'm looking forward to Wednesday. The next few races will tell us a lot. But we're looking forward to something special." For a look at Wednesday's complete card at The Meadows, which begins at 1 p.m., click here. Ken Weingartner Media Relations Manager Harness Racing Communications

DAYTON PA - One track record was broken on sophomore Fair Sire Stakes day Sunday at the Dayton (PA) 2-day Sires event, but the harness racing record book just missed quite an onslaught - three marks, including the all-age track record for both the trot and the pace, survived by a single fifth of a second, and two were missed by two ticks.   It didn't take long past the 1 p.m. first post time before an alteration was needed in the Dayton records, as in the day's first race Waterview Hanover put up fractions of 30.2, 59.4, and 1:30.2 en route to a 2:01 final time, lowering the 2:02.4 standard for three-year-old trotting fillies set by Bessie in 2014, and also just missing Redder Than Red's all-age track trotting mark of 2:00.4 set in 2012. The daughter of Explosive Matter, a winner in her Fair Championship event at The Meadows last year, was driven by Steve Schoeffel for trainer Bill Daugherty Jr. and owner Susan Daugherty.   The track trot mark, and the record for sophomore colts (since that was Redder The Red's status in his 2012 record mile), came under joint assault later in the card, with another of Explosive Matter's offspring, the gelding Major Matter, trotting in 2:01.1, missing both the division and all-age marks by two-fifths of a second. Trainer/driver Rick Beinhauer shares with his wife Regina the ownership of Major Matter, who had already equaled the 2:04 all-age trot standard at Wattsburg.   The all-age pacing mark and the Dayton record for three-year-old colts also "stood the test of time," but just barely, as the Art Official colt Dragon Strikes blasted home in 27.4 to freeze the stopwatch at 1:58, just a shade shy J T Arturo's 1:57.4 mark, set in the distant past of 2002. Brady Brown handled the Mike Gillock trainee as Dragon Strikes is now unbeaten in two fair starts for owner Robert Key, handling Star Of Terror by four lengths - and all Star Of Terror has done recently is equal the Butler all-age mark of 2:00.2, then last week pace the fastest mile of the PA fair season at Gratz, 1:57.1.   Shawn Johnston added another winner Sunday to his career-highlight quintuple on Saturday to be the meet's leading driver, while Rick Beinhauer harnessed a pair of Victory Lane visitors each day to take the training title for the two-day stint.   Next stop of the PA Fair Circuit is at the Lycoming County oval in Hughesville, not far from Williamsport of Little League World Series fame, with action slated for Wednesday and Thursday of this week.   Publicity Office, Pennsylvania Fair Harness Horsemen's Association    

WASHINGTON, PA, July 15, 2016 -- Snowstorm Hanover matched the stake record when he stormed through the slop and scored in 1:56 in Friday's Pennsylvania Sires Stake action at The Meadows. The $192,004 event for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters, known as the Hickory Pride, was contested over six divisions, with Affair Of Honor, Dover Dan, Don Dream, Lucky Matter and Moonshiner Hanover also taking splits. Trainer Chris Beaver (Lucky Matter, Moonshiner Hanover) enjoyed a stake double while Corey Callahan, trainer John Butenschoen and owners William Wiswell, Jean Goehlen and Eugene Schick (Affair Of Honor, Dover Dan) teamed for a pair of Hickory Pride victories. Snowstorm Hanover had little trouble with the off going, zipping to the front for Dave Palone and defeating Stealth Hanover by 3-1/2 lengths, with Andy M third. The time equaled Stormin Normand's Hickory Pride record established in 2011. Palone, who previously piloted the son of Muscle Massive-Snow Angel Hanover in two qualifying wins, said the big performance was no surprise to him. "He's acted like a really good colt all along," Palone said. "There's no bottom to him. Today over that racetrack, that's an incredible mile." Ron Burke trains Snowstorm Hanover for Burke Racing Stable, Frank Baldachino, Phillip Collura and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. A full brother to millionaire and top stallion Explosive Matter, Affair Of Honor raced greenly through the stretch but still held off Box Of Luck by a head in 1:58. Muscle Ville earned show. "He kind of ran out a little bit, looked a little bit lost, but he's starting to figure it out," said assistant trainer Tyler Butenschoen of the son of Cantab Hall-Fireworks Hanover, a $90,000 yearling acquisition. "He has a bunch of ability and speed, but he might be one who takes a little longer to put everything together." Dover Dan saved ground for most of the mile, then exploded out of the final turn and downed You Can't Habit by 1/2 length in 1:58.3. Muay Hanover completed the ticket. "I had to just get him through the turn at the half," Callahan said. "If I could have been first up, I think he'd have won a lot easier. But I didn't want to move with him in either turn. He's still trying to find his gait." In the $20,000 Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Pace, Foiled Again, richest horse in harness racing history, showed he still has plenty of pop at age 12 when he cruised to a front-end victory in 1:51.4, 2-3/4 lengths better than the pocket-sitting Techtor Hanover. Aimo Hanover earned show. The Dragon Again-In A Safe Place gelding soared over $7.4 million in career earnings for trainer Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and JJK Stables. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

There were two divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes races on Thursday afternoon (July 14) at Harrah's Philadelphia for 3-year-old filly pacers, each going for a purse of approximately $80,000. The first division saw 2015 Breeder's Crown champion filly Pure Country (Brett Miller) go off as the heavy favorite (1/9) on the tote board. The daughter of Somebeachsomewhere was undefeated as a 2-year-old, going 10 for 10, winning close to $700,000. After a bit of a slow beginning due to sickness in 2016, she has found her form, with wins in the Fan Hanover and the Lynch in two of her last three starts. She had little difficulty on Thursday, winning under-wraps in a time of 1:51.1. It was her fifth win of the season in eight starts, with career earnings now above $1.2 million. She is owned by Diamond Creek Farms and trained by Jimmy Takter. In the second division, it was Cc Racing and Jo Ann Looney-King's Newborn Sassy (Tim Tetrick) getting the job done. The daughter of Western Ideal was used twice from post 7, brushing to the top after being parked the first quarter. She then yielded the lead to favorite Call Me Queen Be (Scott Zeron). Newborn Sassy hit the passing line in the stretch, to win by 1/2 length, stopping the clock in 1:51.4. It was her tenth career win, and her second win of the season. She paid $11.40. by Michael Bozich, for Harrah's Philadelphia

WASHINGTON, PA, July 12, 2016 -- Fine Tuned Lady zipped to the front at the quarter and blew away the field, scoring in a stake-record 1:55.1 in Tuesday's Pennsylvania Sires Stake at The Meadows. The mile is the fastest this year by a freshman filly trotter on a five-eighths-mile track. The $195,560 event, known as the Meadow Gladys, was contested over five divisions, with Dangle Then Deke, Broadway Idole, Thats All Moni and Sianna Hanover taking the other splits. Yannick Gingras enjoyed a stake double behind Thats All Moni and Sianna Hanover. Fine Tuned Lady was away second before Corey Callahan moved her to the point. She widened her lead from there, defeating the rallying Treviso by 7-1/2 lengths, with Star's Edge third. The time lowered the stake mark of Lifetime Pursuit by a tick. Asked to list her strengths, Tyler Butenschoen, assistant to winning trainer John Butenschoen, could only beam. "Her strengths? Everything," he said of the daughter of Cantab Hall-Poster Princess, who's campaigned by William Wiswell and M&L of Delaware. "She's great to drive. You just feel like you're floating out there. If you don't have a watch, you don't know how fast you're going." James Bafia, a Chicago Blackhawks fan who owns Dangle And Deke, named her for hockey maneuvers that involve deception. Yet there was nothing tricky about the win of Dangle Then Deke. She powered to the front at the quarter for Tem Tetrick, prevailing in 1:57.3 and remaining undefeated after two starts. Nicole Matters was second, 1/2 length back, while Tanya's Dance earned show. "She's taken a liking to the five-eighths, and she likes to race," said Dirk Simpson, who conditions the daughter of Cantab Hall-Love My Muscles, a $28,000 yearling acquisition. "She's a nice, honest filly." When Sianna Hanover was parked through the opening panel, Gingras passed up an opportunity for a seat. "Had there been nobody outside me, I might have (taken a seat)," he said. "But there were already horses making moves from the back, so I didn't want to do it at that point. She doesn't mind that kind of trip. She's a top-class filly." It proved the winning decision, as Sianna Hanover rolled to a 2-3/4-length victory over French Press in 1:57.1. Princess Aurora completed the ticket. Ron Burke trains the daughter of Donato Hanover-Simplicity for Burke Racing Stable, Our Horse Cents Stables and J&T Silva Stables. In the $20,000 Filly & Mare Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, 15-1 outsider She Wore Red moved second over for Callahan, trainer John Melsheimer and owner Joyce McClelland to triumph in a career-best 1:54.1, 2-3/4 lengths better than Princess Pablano. Barn Girl was third. The 4-year-old daughter of Yankee Glide-Tori Ann extended her lifetime bankroll to $145,575. Brian Zendt collected three wins on the 14-race card. Wednesday's program at The Meadows features a $120,000 PA Stallion Series stake for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters. First post is 1 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

WASHINGTON, PA, July 9, 2016 -- Glassine Hanover powered to the lead at the quarter and continued to pour it on, winning her division of a $190,036 Pennsylvania Sires Stake at The Meadows in a stake-record 1:52. Saturday's event for freshman pacing fillies, known as the Sand Tart, was contested over four divisions, with Idyllic Beach, Watch What You Say and Keystone Rampage also taking $47,509 splits. Although Glassine Hanover launched her career with a 1:52.4 score on the bigger track at Hoosier Park, she had little trouble adjusting to The Meadows' five-eighths-mile oval. Once Trace Tetrick sent her to the front, she brooked no serious challenge, downing Bettor's Up by 3/4 lengths. Caviart Ally earned show. The time knocked a tick from the previous stake mark held jointly by Podges Lady and Call Me Queen Be. It also is the fastest this year by a freshman filly pacer on a five-eighths-mile track. Tetrick indicated that at this point in her career, Glassine Hanover is more advanced than any other freshman filly he's driven. "She's got the right tools," he said. "She's very willing and wants to do it. It's just about management now." Trent Stohler trains the daughter of Dragon Again-Gifted Yankee, a $27,000 yearling acquisition, for Trent Stohler Stable, Benjamin Graber, Tim Graber and Dolne Farm Services. Idyllic Beach vacated the pocket before the quarter, made an easy lead and cruised home for Yannick Gingras in 1:53, remaining undefeated in her two-race career. The first-over Agent Q was 3 lengths back in second in her career debut while Inverse Hanover recovered from an early break to complete the ticket. "There's a bunch of good 2-year-olds out there, but she's definitely one of them," Gingras said. "She did it really easy today, all on her own. I would have been happy to follow cover if it worked out that way. She's all-around nice." Jimmy Takter conditions Idyllic Beach, a daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Idyllic, for Christina Takter, John Fielding, Brixton Medical and Marvin Katz. Coming off a maiden-breaking score in a PA All Stars division, Watch What You Say got just the trip winning driver Brett Miller didn't want for her: out most of the opening quarter, chasing the leader, Someomensomewhere, first up. But the daughter of Well Said-Bettor Beware overcame the arduous journey, holding off Someomensomewhere by 3/4 lengths in 1:54. Sapphire Breeze Finished third. "If she'd lost today, it would have been my fault, and I almost got her beat," Miller said. "That was definitely not the trip I was looking to give her. She actually wasn't getting over the track that good. Right past the half I almost lost here. She almost made a break at the top of the backstretch. From then on, I never could turn her loose. Good thing she's a really good filly." Michael Hall trains Watch What You Say for CTC Stable, Bradley Grant and Howard Taylor. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday when the card features six divisions of a $120,000 PA Stallion Series event for 2-year-old filly trotters. First post is 1 PM. by Even Pattak, for the Meadows

WILKES-BARRE PA - The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono produced fireworks on the racetrack for the fourth of July, as five divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for harness racing two-year-old pacing colts raced their first preliminary leg - and each of the races was a fast or faster than any division before it. And as much as the racing babies, sire Somebeachsomewhere was a star in the stakes sections, siring four of the five winners.   Hall of Fame driver David Miller captured the first two divisions, first parading back to Victory Lane with Beach House, who made a second move in front of the grandstand to control the pace, stepping home in 55.4 - 27.2 to complete a 1:52.4 victory for trainer Rich Gillock and owner Harry Locke. Beach House was the only one among Monday's successful quintet with a previous purse victory, a 1:54.1 win at The Meadows.   Miller came right back to win with the only non-SBSW colt, Fear The Dragon, a Dragon Again colt who spent much of the mile stalking 1-5 favorite Filibuster Hanover. Despite that freshman throwing back numbers of 54.4 - 26.4 on the lead, Filibuster Hanover was still able to rally for a head tally in 1:52.2 for trainer Brian Brown and Emerald Highlands Farm.   Brown's favored Downbytheseaside followed Huntsville down the backside in the next division until that one cleared to the top in third quarter, and Huntsville went on with a 55 back half and a 27.2 last panel to stay neck ahead of the chalk in 1:51.4 for driver Tim Tetrick. Trainer Ray Schnittker co-owns the precocious youngster with Ted Gewertz, Charles Ianazzo, and Steve Arnold.   Hall of Fame trainer Jimmy Takter, who had a victory at Pocono a couple of nights ago with a pretty good pacer named Always B Miki, then was the conditioner for the final two Sire Stakes winners, with the first, The Wall, surrendering the early advantage down the backstretch, then being a real Fourth of July pocket rocket, also notching a final clocking of 1:51.4. Brett Miller guided The Wall for the ownership of Christina Takter, John Fielding, Brixton Medical Inc., and Hatfield Stables.   And just when you were breathless from the speedshow the first four babies put on, the fifth one goes faster! Blood Line -- with a name like that, you have to look up the pedigree, and sure enough dam Blood Diamond is a three-quarter sister to millionaires If I Can Dream and Western Terror -- did triumph as the favorite in 1:51.3, but 33-1 shot Summer Side (whom you can add to your "Horses Named After Racetracks" list) pushed him hard in the 27.2 last quarter, but wound up a half-length short on the money. Yannick Gingras handled sulky duties for Diamond Creek Racing (who teamed with Takter for a weekend triumph here with a nice filly named Pure Country).   FINISHING LINES - It wasn't quite The Spirit of 1776 on the Fourth of July at Pocono, but longshots JK Allnitelong ($34.00) and Cheap N Easy ($56.20) did combine to form a $776.20 Daily Double ... More two-year-old stakes colts on Tuesday at The Downs, these of the trotting variety, in five $30,000 divisions of a Pennsylvania All-Stars contest.   PHHA / Pocono

There were three divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes races for 3-year-old filly trotters on tap for Thursday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia, each going for a purse of $53,411.   In the fastest of the three divisions (1:54.3), Al Libfeld and Marvin Katz's Womans Will (Marcus Miller) scored the minor upset over Pennsylvania State Champion and heavy favorite Broadway Donna (Dave Miller). The daughter of Donato Hanover got to the front end, but yielded to the favorite just beyond the quarter.   She maintained her pocket position until the top of the stretch, when she tipped wide and won the sprint home by a head. Kathy Parker (Yannick Gingras) was third. It was the sixth win for Womans Will (first of the season). The victory put her over the $450,000 mark in career earnings. She is trained by Julie Miller.   In the first division (Race 3), it was Hot Curry (Tim Tetrick) getting the job done. The daughter of Muscle Massive came from off the trot today, using a strong first-over brush to overpower the leader before three quarters. She won going away. It was the fifth victory of the season for the Ron Burke trainee, who is also owned by Crawford Farms, Weaver Bruscemi, and Lawrence Karr. Sunset Glider (Yannick Gingras) finished second, while Pink Pistol (Jim Marohn Jr) rallied strong for third. 1:56.1 was the clocking.   The third and final division was taken by Double Exposure (Tim Tetrick). The daughter of Donato Hanover used a live outer flow to her advantage, drafting behind the first-over Windowshopper (Ake Svanstedt), who faded to finish fifth. Double Exposure won her division by one length, stopping the clock in 1:55.4. Miss Tezsla (Brett Miller) was second, while Ultimate Shopper (George Brennan) finished third. It was the Tony Alagna trainee's fifth win in seven career starts, and her first of the season. She is owned by Brittany Farms and Melvin Hartman.   Harrah's Philadelphia will race live on Monday, July 4th, with a first post of 12:40 PM.   by Mike Bozich, for Harrah's Philadelphia  

WILKES-BARRE PA - Broadway Donna, last year's Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year, made her harness racing three-year-old debut a successful one Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, winning a division of the second preliminary leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies in 1:54.1.   Despite not having raced in eight months and three days, since she suffered her only loss when making a break on the lead in her Breeders Crown elimination, the Pocono faithful backed the daughter of Donato Hanover to the tune of 3-5, and she rewarded their confidence. Driver David Miller sent the ten-time winner to lead after the 28 quarter, tripped the beam in 57.2 and 1:26.3 midrace, then sprinted home in 27.3 to win by 1¾ lengths over early leader Spicedbourbongirl. Kathy Parker was third, two lengths behind Spicedbourbongirl and an equal distance ahead of second choice Double Exposure, who went first-over here but had to settle for fourth in her first start since winning the Goldsmith Maid Final last November. Jim Campbell trains the winner of $558,392 for owner/breeder Fashion Farms LLC.   Ginny Weasley upheld the quickly(in No.Am.)-established fact that Ãke Svanstedt trainees are race-ready no matter how long a layoff, rallying into a 56 last half to overhaul pacesetter Sunset Glider by 1¾ lengths and take a new mark of 1:55 in another division. The Andover Hanover filly had not raced since May 17, but she was certainly ready to run her Sire Stakes record in 2016 to 2-for-2, with Lucas Wallin handling sulky duties for Svanstedt and owners Torp Trotting Inc.   In the third division, Ultimate Shopper kept her 2016 tally undefeated after a pair of starts, taking the lead off the first turn, pushing favorite Woman's Will hard before surrendering the lead to her, then moving again in the stretch and running down that foe to post a two length win in 1:54.3. Tim Tetrick was the pilot for the daughter of Yankee Glide, whom trainer Anette Loretzon co-owns with ACL Stuteri AB and Kjell Johansson.   Rose Run Parker, still the fastest trotter of 2016 by virtue of his Meadowlands victory in 1:50.4 one month minus one day ago, worked his way past favored JL Cruze in front of the stands, got a relative middle half breather of 57.3 despite a parked rival on his shoulder, then motored home in 28, with JL Cruze unable to make up stretch ground, in winning the $25.000 winners-over trot in 1:53. The altered son of Jailhouse Jesse, now with a 67% win percentage in 2016 (6-for-9) and a 68% win percentage lifetime (34-for-50), tallied Sunday night for driver Yannick Gingras, trainer Ron Burke, and the ownership of Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.   Tomorrow will be a very big day at The Downs, both in the race office and on the racetrack. The eliminations for this coming Saturday's eliminations for the $2M+ Sun Stakes Saturday to be held on July 2 will be DRAWN MONDAY MORNING AT 9 A.M. (horsemen please note), with a release previewing their races going out midafternoon. At night, five divisions of PA Stallion Series sophomore trotting fillies will be in the feature spotlight.   PHHA / Pocono

There were 3 divisions of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes events (PASS) from Harrah's Philadelphia on Friday afternoon (June 18) each going for a purse of $54,386. The races featured harness racing 3-year-old colt and gelding pacers. In the first division, it was 3 Brother's Stable JK Will Power (Dave Miller) crossing the line first. The son of Somebeachsomewhere was able to secure the pocket ride behind race-favorite Adrian Hanover (George Naploitano Jr.) to score the win up the passing lane in 1:53. Ideal Jimmy (Marcus Miller) finished third. It was the fifth career win for the Ron Burke charge, and his third win of the season in six starts. He paid $7.40. In division two, Driver Dave Miller struck gold again, this time with Brittany Farm's Western Fame. The son of Western Ideal used a backside brush to overpower leader (and eventual second place finisher) Good Living (Corey Callahan) to win in a time of 1:50.4, easily a lifetime best. Blake North (Brett Miller) was third. It was the third career win for Western Fame ($3.40) all coming this season. He is trained by Jimmy Takter. Division three saw Ron Burke trainee Check Six (Yannick Gingras) storm right to the front and never look back. The son of Somebeachsomewhere was able to hold off the passing lane bid of Another Daily Copy, to win in a clocking of 1:51.1. It was the ninth win of his career, five of which have come this season. The win puts him just under $500,000 in career earnings. Western Dynasty (Tim Tetrick) finished third. Check Six ($3.40) is owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, Bill Switala, and Jamie Martin. Michael Bozich

WILKES-BARRE PA - Broadway Donna, the 2YO Trotting Filly of the Year for 2015, makes her 2016 debut on Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, as the second preliminary round of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for harness racing sophomore misses will be conducted over three divisions.   Broadway Donna, a daughter of Donato Hanover - Broadway Schooner trained by Jim Campbell for owner / breeder Fashion Farms LLC of New Hope PA, went undefeated in the first nine starts of her freshman campaign, along the way taking the three preliminary Sire Stakes legs she contested and then the $351,000 Championship event.   In a singular case of bad timing, though, Broadway Donna made a break in her tenth and what would turn out to be last start of 2015, opening up a 3½ length lead after a brush to the ¾ but then losing gait at Mohawk in her Breeders Crown elimination, thus failing to qualify for the next week's Crown Championship. But the quality of her two-year-old campaign in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Kentucky (she was a major stakes winner in all three states) carried her to North American divisional honors.   Broadway Donna comes back to the racing wars off of three straight wins in qualifying events. She will be starting from post two in the fourth race field of nine, with her regular driver, Hall of Famer David Miller, set to pilot her. Her main opposition may come from Spicedbourbongirl, victorious in the first Sire Stakes prelim on May 7 at The Meadows, and 4-for-5 this year for co-owner / trainer / driver Jeff Gregory.   Each of Sunday's three Sire Stakes divisions contains a May 7 Meadows winner from the first prelim. Race 6 will feature Ginny Weasley, a daughter of Andover Hall who overcame post eight in winning in western Pennsylvania. Ginny Weasley will be starting Sunday having been away from the races for 33 days, since a second in a PA All-Stars event at Pocono, but trainer Ãke Svanstedt has become known for sending out a ready-to-win horse when any member of his stable goes behind the gate. Svanstedt's lieutenant Lucas Wallin, who guided her to victory at The Meadows, again will be in the sulky as Ginny Weasley starts from the middle of the nine-horse field.   Fastest of the three winners during the Meadows first preliminary was the Cantab Hall filly Pink Pistol, who closed from sixth at the half to show her heels to the field in 1:55 flat. Trainer Rob Harmon has again tapped driver Jeff Gregory for Sunday's eighth race Sires division, with the pair starting two from the outside in post seven.   Aside from the Sire Stakes fillies, another trotter who will attract his fair share of attention on Sunday is JL Cruze, the Older Trotting Male of the Year in North America in 2015, who has drawn the rail in a field of eight contesting a $25,000 winners-over event in race 10. The Crazed gelding, one of the few trotters in history to possess a sub-1:50 mark which he earned at The Meadowlands by winning in 1:49.4, has won four of six races this season, but in his last start he made a break while on the lead of the Maxie Lee Trot at Harrah's Philadelphia on May 29. Trainer Eric Ell and driver John Campbell will be looking to get the star trotter back on course against a field which includes Rose Run Parker, whose 1:50.4 victory in New Jersey on May 20 still stands as the fastest trotting mile of the season.   On Monday, five divisions of the sophomore trotting fillies will battle it out in the second preliminary round of Pennsylvania Stallion Series action. Much of that night's attention will be on Goodtogo Hanover (race 5, post 5, trainer Bill Zendt, driver Brian Zendt), a first round prelim winner and also a Currier and Ives winner at the Zendts' home track of The Meadows, as she makes her first 2016 start away from her base.   PHHA / Pocono

WILKES-BARRE PA - The chalk went 0-for-3 in the third preliminary leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for three-year-old trotting colts Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, with each of the harness racing trio of winners taking a new lifetime mark.   Love Matters ($6.80 as the second choice) was the first to find the Sire Stakes winners circle, and he had the hardest trip of the three winners, having to go first-over against favored Milligan's School. But the son of Explosive Matter handled the raw journey with aplomb for driver Brett Miller, winning by 2½ lengths for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Christina Takter, Brixton Medical Inc., John Fielding, and Herb Liverman. In a rare occurrence, the judges were directly involved in determining the order of finishers 2 through 7: Taco Tuesday and Desert Runner finished in a dead-heat for second; Milligan's School was just behind them in fourth, in addition to making a brief stretch break, with the judges determining no violation there; and then Stoneridge Combat, who went under the wire fifth, was adjudged guilty of interference and was placed seventh, resulting in Cloud Nine Hanover and Sliding Home moving up a notch in the placings.   Trolley returned $28.20 to win in matching Love Matters' 1:54.4 clocking, despite the fact that he was coming off a stakes win at Pocono. Well ... maybe the fact that that victory was 350 days ago had something to do with the price, but the Donato Hanover colt showed no ill effects after his layoff since June 28 of last year, following his second race, utilizing the Pocono Pike to get by pacesetting Cufflink Hanover and edge first-over Lagerfeld by a neck, with "Cufflink" only another half-length back in third.   Marcus Miller, who had driven four winners earlier in the day at Philly (including a $74.80 winner on a day where longshots ruled in eastern Pennsylvania), was in the sulky for father/trainer Erv and owners Paymaq Racing, Leland Mathias, Greg Gillis, and Louis Willinger.   Despite going off at 5-2 (fourth), 2-5 (third), and even money (second) in his last three starts, Hititoutofthepark was dismissed as a $33.40 shot in the third division, but he posted the fastest winning time of all, 1:54.2, rolling to the top past the quarter and going on to a two length victory over Hollywood Highway. The victorious Yankee Glide ridgling, who was guided by Corey Callahan for trainer John Butenschoen and owners Give It A Shot Stable, Kurt Welling, and the VIP Internet Stable LLC, was also overlooked in his last start at Pocono - a Pennsylvania All-Stars event on Kentucky Derby afternoon, when he won and returned $30.60.   The Cash Hall gelding Cash Me Out is now a winner of two straight (both locally) and six out of his last ten trips behind the gate after taking the $25,000 winners-over trot in 1:54. Andrew McCarthy and Cash Me Out left in 26.4 to ensure prime early position, yielded to Wind Of The North and sat well-placed as that one and first-over favorite Rose Run Parker battled, then shot the Pocono Pike en route to winning for trainer Kyle Spagnola and owner Traylor Racing LLC.   PHHA / Pocono  

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