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Freehold, NJ --- Harness racing driver Tim Tetrick knows Huntsville will face challenges in Saturday’s C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup. His goal is to make the race even more challenging for those that oppose him. “It’s like a chess match,” said Tetrick, who will drive 8-5 morning line favorite Huntsville in the season’s first major open stakes event for 3-year-old male pacers. “I try to drive three or four horses in a race all the time. I know where everyone is, and where I can put them. I always try to put them where they don’t want to be. That’s the name of catch driving. “And you’ve got to think about speed and time and who’s leaving and who you want to follow. You’re looking for a little bit of an edge, where you can get a jump on somebody or keep them locked in.” Huntsville is trying to become the fifth horse this century to receive a Dan Patch Award at age 2 and capture the North America Cup the following year. He would join Captaintreacherous, Sportswriter, Somebeachsomewhere and Bettor's Delight. All but Sportswriter, who retired midseason because of injury, went on to claim a Dan Patch Award at 3. The 35-year-old Tetrick won the North America Cup with Captaintreacherous in 2013 and Wakizashi Hanover in 2015. In addition to the 34th edition of the North America Cup, Saturday’s card at Mohawk Racetrack includes the C$440,000 Fan Hanover Stakes for 3-year-old female pacers, C$365,000 Roses Are Red Stakes for older female pacers, C$253,000 Armbro Flight Stakes for older female trotters, and C$251,000 Goodtimes Stakes for 3-year-old male trotters. Post time for the first of the 15 races Saturday is 6:30 p.m. Huntsville, a son of  Somebeachsomewhere out of the mare Wild West Show, has won 10 of 15 career races and never finished worse than second. Last year he enjoyed a six-race win streak that included victories in the Breeders Crown, divisions of the Bluegrass and International Stallion Stakes, and Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship. His 1:49 mile in the International Stallion equaled the world record for a 2-year-old pacer. He is trained by Ray Schnittker, who bred the colt with Charlie Iannazzo and owns the horse with Iannazzo, Ted Gewertz, and Steven Arnold. Huntsville has earned $764,093 in his career. Last week Huntsville won his North America Cup elimination by 4-1/4 lengths over Classic Pro in 1:49.1. Fear The Dragon, the 2-1 second choice, won his elim by 1-1/2 lengths over Filibuster Hanover in 1:50 and Downbytheseaside, who is 3-1, won his elim by two lengths over Western Hill in 1:50.4. Four of Huntsville’s second-place finishes have come to either Fear The Dragon or Downbytheseaside. The other, in his first career start, was to Filibuster Hanover. In fact, three of Huntsville’s five lifetime runner-up finishes came in his first four races. “I think I’ve got one of the best horses, if not the best,” Tetrick said. “I’m very confident. He was super last week and I think I’ve got a great shot. When he’s on his game he’s very hard to catch. “He’s a big strong horse and he can take air and he’s very, very fast. He’s had some (steering) issues, but other than that he’s got all the attributes of a great horse. He’s got tons of speed. I’ve never gotten him tired. He’s been beaten, but never tired. Once you get him in high gear he can carry his speed a long way.” Huntsville will start the North America Cup from post No. 3, with Fear The Dragon and driver David Miller in post four and Downbytheseaside and driver Brian Sears in post two. Fear The Dragon and Downbytheseaside are trained by Brian Brown. Jimmy Takter’s Ocean Colony, with driver Yannick Gingras, in post No. 1 completes the list of horses with inside starting positions. “It’s all going to play out there in the first eighth (of a mile) or first quarter and we’ll see what happens,” Tetrick said. “I think the best four horses are 1-2-3-4. I’m sure someone on the outside is going to take a flyer. “Mohawk is a very fair track; you can win both ways (from the front and from behind). But I’m just really super happy with my colt. It should be a great race.” Following is the field for the Pepsi North America Cup. The race, scheduled for 10:40 p.m., will be part of a live broadcast from 10-11 p.m. on TSN3 and TSN5. PP-Horse-Sire-Driver-Trainer-Line 1 - Ocean Colony - Somebeacsomewhere - Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-10/1 2 - Downbytheseaside - Somebeacsomewhere - Brian Sears-Brian Brown-3/1 3 - Huntsville - Somebeacsomewhere - Tim Tetrick-Ray Schnittker-8/5 4 - Fear The Dragon - Dragon Again - David Miller-Brian Brown-2/1 5 - Sports Column - Sportswriter - Chris Christoforou-Blake MacIntosh-25/1 6 - Classic Pro - Shadow Play - Trevor Henry-Ian Moore-20/1 7 - Ozone Blue Chip - Bettor's Delight - Brett Miller-Ron Coyne Jr.-25/1 8 - Filibuster Hanover - Somebeacsomewhere - Louis-Philippe Roy-Ron Burke-15/1 9 - Western Hill - Western Ideal - Doug McNair-Tony Alagna-20/1 10  - Miso Fast - Roll With Joe - Matt Kakaley-Ron Burke-20/1 by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 15 - Harness racing trainer Tony Alagna is set to make his fifth appearance in the $1,000,000 Pepsi North America Cup on Saturday, June 17 when he sends Western Hill, a Western Ideal gelding from the Art Major mare Cosmo Blue Chip, from post nine with Doug McNair driving the 20-1 morning-line shot. In 2013, Alagna won with, the favorite, Captaintreacherous and was third with stable mate Wake Up Peter. He is aiming for his second win in "The Cup", trying with Artspeak (who was fifth in the 2015 edition) and Racing Hill (second in 2016). "We tend to choose specific families of horses when we go to purchase yearlings,"Alagna said regarding his capability to send contenders into The Cup year in and year out. "If you follow the families of horses I've had in the North America Cup, they all usually come from great maternal pedigrees, so I feel that contributes greatly to get horses to the North America Cup for us." Going for a one-million dollar prize, Alagna does not have a ritualistic routine to ready his contenders for the race. "They kind of tell you going into the race what they're looking for," Alagna said. "[Western Hill] raced well in his start before [The Cup] eliminations, so he didn't require a lot of work. He pretty much had a couple of [training] trips before each race and has seemed to respond well." Leading up to The Cup, Western Hill, who is owned by Tom Hill, only raced twice, off a two-year-old campaign consisting of four wins in 10 starts. In his first start of the year, he lagged off the gate but sprinted home to finish seventh and followed that effort with a 1:51.4 victory against overnight stock at Mohawk. He's entering The Cup off his fastest mile to date, a 1:51.1 runner-up off-the-pace finish to elimination winner Downbytheseaside. "We had this horse last year but we didn't get him ready this winter," Alagna said. "Another trainer got the horse ready and qualified him, then we got the horse back after that. We made a few adjustments and got him back on the routine we had him on the year before and that's why the horse has responded as well as he has." Racing from far off the pace, on the front, and mid-pack, Western Hill has displayed a versatile racing style, though Western Hill's fastest race came off a trip. "Against these kind of horses, he's definitely better off a trip," Alagna said. "He likes to run horses down; he likes a target. Some of the races he was in last year he had to be forwardly placed just because I thought he was good enough to win either way and we couldn't take any chances of getting him into a traffic jam coming from off the pace." Alagna's past contenders, Captaintreacherous, Artspeak, and Racing Hill, entered The Cup as favorites or as major contenders. Western Hill approaches the event as a longer shot needing the correct circumstances to propel him to victory. "When you have a longer shot, you have less pressure, but you still want to see the horse continue to improve," Alagna said. "That's what we're looking for, especially with post position nine it makes [winning] a little bit tougher. We're going to need some speed up front; we're going to need a decent pace to be able to get money from the nine-hole. But we have a horse that was 15, 20-to-one in his elimination, so you hope the horse improves and then move onto the next stakes race and hope for a better post position." Alagna has in mind what he expects to see from Western Hill in the North America Cup final, but admits he doesn't get in his driver's ear and knows things don't always go as planned. "I'd probably say he's going to come from off the pace, but one thing about me is I never tell anybody that drives for me what to do," Alagna also said. "Things change too quickly--we had She's Watching in a [Fan Hanover] elimination and the plan was to come from off the pace because she has such a big last quarter in her, but nobody was on the gate so [Scott Zeron] left off the gate and got her in third. "So many things can happen once the gate folds and drivers have to make the split-second decisions they are paid to make." Here is the field for the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup. 1. Ocean Colony (Yannick Gingras/Jimmy Takter) 10-1 2. Downbytheseaside (Brian Sears/Brian Brown) 3-1 3. Huntsville (Tim Tetrick/Ray Schnittker) 8/5 4. Fear The Dragon (David Miller/Brian Brown) 2-1 5. Sports Column (Chris Christoforou/Blake MacIntosh) 25-1 6. Classic Pro (Trevor Henry/Dr. Ian Moore) 20-1 7. Ozone Blue Chip (Brett Miller/Ron Coyne) 25-1 8. Filibuster Hanover (Louis Philippe Roy/Ron Burke) 15-1 9. Western Hill (Doug McNair/Tony Alagna) 20-1 10. Miso Fast (Matt Kakaley/Ron Burke) 20-1 Ray Cotolo for WEG Communications

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 15 - Mohawk Racetrack has released admission, entrance and harness racing event details for Saturday's $1 million Pepsi North America Cup. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for kids (ages 12-17) and children under 12 are free. Tickets will be on-sale beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and doors will open at 4 p.m. Tickets will be available for purchase at the Main Entrance and East Gate Entrance using cash, credit or debit. To avoid line-ups, fans are urged to purchase their tickets in advance through TicketMaster. A Will-Call table will be set up outside the Main Entrance for guests with reservations in the Terrace Dining Room and Lounge. Signage will be posted to direct guests with reservations to Will-Call. The pre-race concert with Kira Isabella begins at 5 p.m. The rising country star will also be performing the national anthems at 6:15 p.m. Jojo Mason will take the stage at approximately 7 p.m. and will be performing between races. Post time for Saturday's 15-race card is 6:30 p.m. There will also be several special food and drink options for fans to enjoy. A beer tent will be set up in the concert area (at the East End), while Woodbine's brand-new Food Truck will also be on-site The popular "First Bet on Us" promotion is back and the first 2,500 fans to sign up will receive a 2017 Pepsi North America Cup hat. The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup is carded as Race 12 and will go postward at approximately 10:40 p.m. The $100,000 All-Stakes Pick-4 starts in Race 9 and features the Fan Hanover, Goodtimes, Roses Are Red and Pepsi North America Cup. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.NorthAmericaCup.com   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, Ont. — Brian Brown isn't the least bit concerned about not having the harness racing favourite for the $1-million Pepsi North America Cup. Brown will have two horses — Fear The Dragon and Downbytheseaside — in Canada's richest harness event at Mohawk Racetrack. Although both are coming off impressive wins in their respective elimination races last weekend, the horse to beat Saturday night will be Huntsville, the early 8-5 favourite. Huntsville posted the fastest time in the three elimination races. The son of 2008 Cup winner Somebeachsomewhere earned a 4 1/4-length victory in one minute 49.1 seconds, the third in four starts this season for U.S. racing's top two-year-old pacing colt last year. "I thought (Huntsville) should've been the favourite as good as he raced the other day," Brown said Tuesday after the race draw at Mohawk Racetrack. "I'm not a gambler of any type, I couldn't even tell you what three-to-five pays. "I'd like to be the favourite in every race I was ever in but in the end, to me, the odds don't mean anything. You just go out and race and hope everything works with no one getting into any trouble and everyone has a clean race." Fear The Dragon and Downbytheseaside aren't exactly chopped liver either. Both are undefeated this season, with Fear The Dragon winning all five starts in 2017 while Downbytheseaside has won four straight.  David Miller drove both American-owned and bred horses to their elimination wins, leaving him with a tough decision regarding which one he'd take Saturday night. Brown said Miller will drive Fear The Dragon in the Cup with fellow American Brian Sears replacing Miller with Downbytheseaside. While Brown handles preparations for the horses to race, he'll leave the driving to Miller and Sears on Saturday night. Miller won last year's Cup with Betting Line. "When I give the lines to David and Brian, I shut up," Brown said. "I don't want any opinions in their head but their own. "I expect other horses from the outside will be leaving hard for position. I think when the dust settles into the quarter, two or three of us will be moving on, trying to get to the front. I just hope I'm in a good spot by the half with both horses." Huntsville, trained by Ray Schnittker and driven by Tim Tetrick, will go from post No. 3, flanked by Downbytheseaside (No. 2) and Fear The Dragon (No. 4). Fear The Dragon gave Brown some anxious moments in his elimination win. Leading in the deep stretch, Fear The Dragon jumped over a fallen racing head number and broke stride. Miller managed to get Fear The Dragon pacing again just steps before crossing the wire. "He was going right over it, he saw it and just stepped over it and got tangled up and made a break," Brown said. "Thankfully he recovered." Fortunately, Brown said the horse is none the worse for wear. "When we took his bandages off, there were no marks, no swelling," he said. "We jogged him (Monday) and today he seems like himself, everything looks fine." Despite Downbytheseaside's winning ways, the horse also has his issues. Brown said the richest horse in Saturday's field ($848,616) sometimes has difficulty running with the lead. "He just waits on the other horses when he gets away from them," Brown said. "But in this race, they're all going to be together and whoever is on the front, somebody is going to be right at their throat the whole step. "I feel good but I'm not overly confident. I feel I should get good money if I don't win but the object is to come here to win. I saw that Cup 20 years ago when I was up here and I've been eyeing it ever since." The remainder of the 10-horse field, with post, driver, (and hometown if Canadian), includes: 1) Ocean Colony, Yannick Gingras of Sorel, Que.; 5) Sports Column, Chris Christoforou of Campbellville, Ont.; 6) Classic Pro, Trevor Henry of Arthur, Ont.; 7) Ozone Blue Chip, Brett Miller; 8) Filibuster Hanover, Matt Kakaley; 9) Western Hill, Doug McNair of Guelph, Ont.; 10) Miso Fast, Matt Kakaley. Dan Ralph, The Canadian Press Reprinted with permission of the Nanaimo News Now

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 10 - Harness racing's finest three-year-old pacing colts and geldings faced off Saturday at Mohawk to contest three $50,000 eliminations to determine the starters for the $1-million Pepsi North America Cup on June 17. Winning was a breeze for Downbytheseaside and driver David Miller in the first elimination. Downbytheseaside got away fifth as Sports Column marched his way to the early lead, pacing past the first quarter in :27. Into the backstretch, Lawrencetown Beach, who was fourth on the rail, was first to make a bid for the front. Downbytheseaside followed. Lawrencetown Beach took command before the midway point, but a looming Downbytheseaside snatched the lead at the half in :54.4. Once the Brian Brown trainee cleared, he started to pull away from his seven rivals. Ultimately, no one could catch the 1-9 favourite. He cruised by the three-quarter pole in 1:21.4 and crossed the wire first by two lengths in 1:50.4. Western Hill and Sports Column rallied for second and third respectively. "I don't think he was at his best tonight for whatever reason. I've seen him better," said Miller. "[The wind] could be playing a factor. You're leaving into it and you're finishing into it and it might have something to do with it. "He was a pretty solid horse last year and got better as the year went on, which is unusual," Miller said. "He came back this year and we can't be happier with him. Just tonight, I wouldn't say he was at his best." Downbytheseaside remains unbeaten as a three-year-old with four victories from four outings. He notched his 12th lifetime victory in 17 starts. With the win, the son of Somebeachsomewhere and Sprig Hanover lifts his career earnings to $858,616 for owners Country Club Acres Inc, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo and Diamond Creek Racing. Downbytheseaside paid $2.10 to win and place, combining with Western Hill ($8.40) for a $19.80 (4-3) exactor. A 4-3-7 (Sports Column) triactor was worth $254.60, while a $1 superfecta [4-3-7-5 (Some Attitude)] returned $670.55. There was no show wagering. Downbytheseaside Huntsville, who has never been worse than second in his career, added another victory to his record with a 1:49.1 score in the second North America Cup elimination. Huntsville and driver Tim Tetrick dropped into fourth as Classic Pro, Ozone Blue Chip and NormandyBeach battled three-wide into the first turn. Ozone Blue Chip drop back to third while Normandy Beach drove on for the lead, leaving Classic Pro to take the pocket spot. Just after Normandy Beach posted the opening quarter in :26.3, Huntsville was on the move first up. The 1-9 favourite brushed to the front and held command past the half in :55.2 and three-quarters in 1:22.1. Into the stretch, Huntsville was untouchable adding distance between himself and the rest of the field. The sophomore scored by four and a quarter lengths en route to the winner's circle. Classic Pro surged to finish second and Ozone Blue Chip was third. "It looked like it was easy enough and he caught a nice division and he raced really well," said trainer Ray Schnittker. "It was a good mile. Probably in the afternoon or something like that it would be a [1]:48 and a piece mile, I would think. "He's a very fast colt," he added. "He's a great big colt so hopefully he just keeps getting better as the year goes on. You never know though." Huntsville scored his third triumph of the season from four outings and 10th career victory. With the win, the son of Somebeachsomewhere and Wild West Show increases his career earnings to $801,263 for trainer Ray Schnittker, who shares ownership with Theodore Gewertz, Charles Iannazzo, and Steven Arnold. Huntsville paid $2.10 to win and place, combining with Classic Pro ($11.50) for a $39.70 (2-4) exactor. A 2-4-5 (Ozone Blue Chip) triactor was worth $214, while a $1 superfecta [2-4-5-8 (Miso Fast)] returned $951.20. There was no show wagering. Huntsville Driver Dave Miller and trainer Brain Brown teamed up to win their second 'Cup' tilt in the third and final elimination. Fear The Dragon, who is now five-for-five this season, overcame a break in stride to scorch his foes in 1:50. When the gate wings folded, Miller pointed Fear The Dragon towards the three-hole while Ocean Colony was taken to the front and Hurricane Beach took the two-hole spot. After Ocean Colony posted a :27.2 opening panel, Fear The Dragon was given the signal it was time to make a move. Launching a first-over attack on the leader, Fear The Dragon surged to the lead before the half. The 1-5 bettor's choice held command past the mid-way point in :55, which is when an eager Ocean Colony made his bid for the front. The 9-2 third choice couldn't catch up to his front-stepping foe but added pressure as they passed the three-quarters in 1:22. In deep stretch, Fear The Dragon opened up on pack, but the colt jumped over a fallen head number and broke stride. Miller was able to get Fear The Dragon pacing again just steps before crossing the wire. Filibuster Hanover rallied for second and Ocean Colon dropped back to third. "If you watch leaving the gate, Yannick's horse (Ocean Colony) lost his head number as he was crossing over," said Miller. "I didn't even think of it. My horse stepped over it." "I was real happy with him," he added. "He was just cruising along there. I asked him a little bit. He is a little lazy at times. I was real happy with him. He was real comfortable." With the win, the son of Dragon Again and Armbro Cinnamon is captured his 10th career victory and lifts his career earnings to $325,844 for Emerald Highlands Farm. Fear The Dragon paid $2.70 and $2,10, combining with Filibuster Hanover ($5.80) for a $21.70 (7-3) exactor. A 7-3-6 (Ocean Colony) triactor was worth $44.50, while a $1 superfecta [7-3-6-2 (Miso Fast)] returned $56.10. There was no show wagering. Fear The Dragon The top three finishers from each elimination along with Miso Fast, who was the fourth-place finisher to draw into the final, will compete in the $1 million final on Saturday, June 17 at Mohawk. The connections of the elimination winner may select their post positions for the final, which will take place at a press conference held on Tuesday, June 13 at Mohawk. Toronto Maple Leafs winger Matt Martin will be the guest drawmaster for Canada's richest Standardbred race.   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 8 - Nine years after coming together to win the Pepsi North America Cup with the great Somebeachsomewhere, the Schooner Stables and harness racing driver Paul MacDonell team up again with Lawrencetown Beach, a lightly raced son Somebeachsomewhere, in Saturday's (June 10) Cup eliminations. Unraced at two, Lawrencetown Beach qualified for the first-time back in February and made his pari-mutuel debut in March with eyes set on a solid three-year-old season and potential North America Cup appearance. Over the course of four-months, the bay gelding has competed mainly in overnight events at Woodbine and Mohawk, picking up two victories and $39,040 earned over eight starts. "He had some chips that were bothering him as a two-year-old," trainer-driver Paul MacDonell said. "Originally, the vets thought that he would be fine with them still in, but they just plagued him through the season. It got to a point where he couldn't go with them so we laid him off and they were removed. Missing his entire two-year-old season came with pros and cons for Lawrencetown Beach. "He might be a bit fresher than most of the others, but he's not as experienced," MacDonell said. "The two-year-olds that raced definitely have a touch of experience over him, but there are advantages both ways I suppose. It kind of evens itself out--would you want a horse entering fresh or a horse with experience? It's six of one, half a dozen of the other; really depends on the horse." Lawrencetown Beach scored the first win of his career in his fifth outing, beating maiden company at Mohawk in 1:53.1. He followed that effort with a nine-length romp against non-winners of two in a lifetime-best mile of 1:52.2. "When the owners made a payment on the North America Cup, I thought that was an extreme long shot," MacDonell said. "But here we are--he has just improved week after week; every time he raced he seemed to be better. Confidence seems to be coming to him, too. He's right on schedule. He grew to be a muscular colt and he has all the tools he needs." Competing in a division of the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes a week ago, Lawrencetown Beach rallied to finish second after being caught first over for most of the mile. "I knew he was coming up to a big race, and I still think he's coming up to some big races," MacDonell noted. "The colt has shown me progression or else we wouldn't be where we are. He's been drawing really well--there're a lot of things going his way right now. He has some kind of touch that's been helping him along as he goes." LawrencetownBeach will start from post one in the first of three $50,000 eliminations for the Pepsi North America Cup, drawing in against world-champion Downbytheseaside. "He definitely has the potential to make the final," MacDonell said. "There are probably three or four horses that are probably above everybody else [in the division]. And then there's the next group of colts, which he probably fits into. "I think you're going to see Huntsville and [Downbythe]seaside and Fear The Dragon and maybe another one that are just a touch better than the rest. But he's definitely in the mix. While reaching his full potential in time for the Pepsi North America Cup might be a stretch, MacDonell thinks the future is very bright for Lawrencetown Beach. "I think you'll see a nicer horse later on," MacDonell said. "By this time next year, he should be an even stronger colt. He may not be right at his peak yet, but when he is, he'll be a top horse I believe." Ray Cotolo for WEG Communications

Beckhams Z Tam is the type of horse that likes to have fun. But when it comes time to work, the colt is all business. And after watching Beckhams Z Tam take care of business in his most recent start, his harness racing connections are ready to send the Indiana-bred pacer on a business trip --- to the Pepsi North America Cup at Ontario's Mohawk Racetrack. Beckhams Z Tam was among 25 horses entered in the North America Cup, which is for 3-year-old pacers and features a C$1 million final on June 17. The 25 horses were divided into three eliminations, to be contested Saturday, with the top three finishers from each division plus one fourth-place finisher drawn by lot advancing to the final. The connections of elimination winners earn the right to select their post position for the final. Post time is 7:30 p.m. for Saturday's card. Beckhams Z Tam is in the second of the three North America Cup eliminations. The division also includes returning Dan Patch Award winner Huntsville and Metro Pace winner Beyond Delight. Beckhams Z Tam will start from post three with driver Ricky Macomber Jr., who is making his first appearance in the North America Cup. Jamie Macomber, Ricky's wife, trains Beckhams Z Tam, who is 4-for-4 this year but will be stepping up in competition at Mohawk. All of the colt's wins have been against conditioned-level horses at Hoosier Park, but Beckhams Z Tam's most recent triumph in 1:51 is tied for the 12th fastest win time of the season by a 3-year-old pacer. The victory followed a nearly one-month layoff because of sickness. Following the win, the Macombers consulted with owner Bill Matz of Z Tam Stables and Beckhams Z Tam's former trainer Wilbur Eash regarding the trip to the North America Cup. "Ricky said when he came off the track after his last start that he thought we should enter him," Jamie Macomber said. "I asked Mr. Matz what he was leaning toward and he said he was always game to take a shot. We have nothing to lose. He's not going to miss any racing in Indiana if we're fortunate enough to be up there for two weeks. "Wilbur said all along this is a nice colt. When it came to staking him this winter, we all talked and came up with a little schedule for him. Wilbur made a comment earlier this season that he'd been waiting on a horse like this for 40 years. Wilbur knew he was special." Macomber is in her first year of running her own stable after spending the past 10 years handling trainer Ron Burke's Indiana-stabled horses. She received support, as well as horses, from the 61-year-old Eash, who was looking to slow down with an eye toward retirement. Macomber took over the training of Beckhams Z Tam in March. "He's a really nice colt," Macomber said. "Unfortunately he hasn't faced the competition that the others we're racing against have faced. So far he's done everything we've asked of him." Last year, Beckhams Z Tam was winless in six races, but finished second on three occasions. Two of his runner-up finishes came in $75,000 Indiana Sire Stakes finals at Hoosier Park. Macomber was able to bring the horse along slowly this year because he fit in low-level conditioned races. The horse romped in his four victories, with no margin of triumph less than 1-1/2 lengths. "He's matured a lot," Macomber said. "Ricky likes him and has confidence in him, so that's a good thing. "Off the track, I love his personality. He's always happy. In the barn he acts like a good horse; he rests a lot, he eats well and he loves to play. He's a ham. He's always got his head out the gate when he's awake. On the track, he's fun and playful when we first go out, but when it's time to go to work he gets down to business. There's really nothing to dislike about him." Beckhams Z Tam is a son of stallion Always A Virgin out of the mare Sara's Lucky Charm. His second dam is Modern Bobbi, who is the mother of last season's Indiana Sire Stakes 2-year-old male pacing champion On The Virg. Interestingly, On The Virg and Beckhams Z Tam finished 1-2 in one of the $75,000 finals at Hoosier last year. In addition to being staked to the North America Cup, Beckhams Z Tam is eligible to the Breeders Crown, which will be held at Hoosier Park in October, as well as the Jenna's Beach Boy and Monument Circle stakes. Beckhams Z Tam hopes to follow in the hoof prints of Indiana-bred horses that have enjoyed success on the Grand Circuit in recent years, including the past two Horse of the Year Award winners, Always B Miki and Wiggle It Jiggleit. "They've really stepped up a lot in the last few years, so that's very encouraging," Macomber said. "It's fun to think we could possibly have a good one on our hands." For more information on the Pepsi North America Cup and all the festivities, visit www.NorthAmericaCup.com Here are the full fields for the Pepsi North America Cup eliminations. Elimination 1 (Race 3) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Lawrencetown Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Paul MacDonell 2 – Ideal Wheel – American Ideal - Louis-Philippe Roy 3 – Western Hill – Western Ideal - Doug McNair 4 – Downbytheseaside – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 5 – Some Attitude – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 6 – Eddard Hanover – Dragon Again - Matt Kakaley 7 – Sports Column – Sportswriter - Chris Christoforou 8 – Stealth Bomber – Rocknroll Hanover - Brett Miller Elimination 2 (Race 8) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Arsenal Seelster – Artistic Fella - Jonathan Drury 2 – Huntsville – Somebeachsomewhere - Tim Tetrick 3 – Beckhams Z Tam – Always A Virgin - Richard Macomber 4 – Classic Pro – Shadow Play - Trevor Henry 5 – Ozone Blue Chip – Bettor's Delight - Tim Tetrick 6 – Normandy Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 7 – Beyond Delight – Bettor's Delight - Sylvain Filion 8 – Miso Fast – Roll With Joe - Matt Kakaley 9 – Richard Hill – Mach Three - Doug McNair Elimination 3 (Race 9) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Mac's Jackpot – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 2 – Hurricane Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Louis-Philippe Roy 3 – Filibuster Hanover – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 4 – Mc Mach – Mach Three - Paul MacDonell 5 – Darling's Dragon – Dragon Again - Donald Dupont 6 – Ocean Colony – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 7 – Fear The Dragon – Dragon Again - David Miller 8 – Streakavana – Big Jim - Sylvain Filion Ken Weingartner

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 6 - The Pepsi North America Cup eliminations may snag most of the headlines, but Friday and Saturday's cards of harness racing are flooded with stars of the sport competing in a variety of elimination races. Saturday evening's card features the eliminations for the Fan Hanover Stakes and Roses Are Red. A total of 19 three-year-old pacing fillies have been split into two $35,000 eliminations for the Fan Hanover. Idyllic Beach (PP7, Yannick Gingras), who won last year's Shes A Great Lady Stakes, will look to create more magic at Mohawk in the first elimination. The Jimmy Takter trained daughter of Somebeachsomewhere won eight of 14 starts as a rookie and is one for one to start her three-year-old campaign. The second elimination will see Tequila Monday (PP6, Brian Sears) make her Mohawk debut. The Chris Oakes trainee is coming into the Fan Hanover off victories in the $140,770 Lismore at Yonkers and a division of the New York Sires Stakes at Saratoga. The daughter of American Ideal won four of five starts as a rookie and has a career record of six wins in nine starts. A field of nine will battle in the first elimination (Race 5), while ten pacing fillies will compete in the second split (Race 7). The top-five finishers from each elimination will advance to the $440,000 Fan Hanover final. The Roses Are Red Stakes will require three $35,000 eliminations for the second year in a row, as 23 of the finest older pacing mares will display their talents at Mohawk. Four-year-old Pure Country (PP7, Brett Miller) will look to continue her success at Mohawk and pick up her first victory of the season in the first elimination. The Takter trainee won the Fan Hanover final and the Simcoe Stakes last season at Mohawk. The second elimination will see local star Sandbetweenurtoes (PP3, Doug McNair) attempt to protect her home track. The Richard Moreau trained six-year-old has won eight of 16 starts this season and has racked up the dollars in the WEG Mares Preferred. Sandbetweenurtoes has banked over $150,000 this season for owner Brad Grant and is less than $70,000 away from reaching $1 million in career earnings. Division leader Lady Shadow (PP5, Yannick Gingras) highlights the third elimination. The Ron Adams trained five-year-old has picked right up where she left off at the end of last season, with victories in the Chip Noble Memorial and Betsy Ross to sit two for two entering the Roses Are Red eliminations. Lady Shadow won 12 of 20 starts last season and banked over $900,000. Her career earnings currently sit at $1.9 million. The top-three finishers, plus a fourth-place finisher drawn by lot, will advance to the $365,000 Roses Are Red final. The eliminations are carded as Races 2, 6 and 10. The stakes action isn't limited to Saturday night this weekend at Mohawk, as Friday evening's card will also have plenty of eliminations for Pepsi North America Cup night stakes. The Armbro Flight for trotting mares and Goodtimes for three-year-old trotters will each have two eliminations on Friday evening. Superstar trotter Hannelore Hanover is back to defend her Armbro Flight crown in the first of two $35,000 seven-horse eliminations. The Ron Burke trainee is one for two this season after winning 17 of 20 and banking over $1.1 million last season. Hannelore Hanover's most recent start was an easy-looking victory in a division of the Miss Versatility on May 22. The second split features last season's top-two three-year-old trotting fillies, as Broadway Donna (PP1, David Miller) and Caprice Hill (PP2, Doug McNair) will clash for the first-time in the older ranks. Broadway Donna, a winner of over $1.2 million, finished third against male counterparts in a division of the Graduate on Saturday at Mohawk, while Caprice Hill is coming in off a victory in her four-year-old debut last Friday at Mohawk. The top-five finishers from each Armbro Flight split will advance to the $253,000 final on Saturday, June 17. A group of 17 three-year-old trotters have been divided into two $30,000 Goodtimes eliminations. Wellwood Memorial winner Seven And Seven (PP4, Tom Durand) will make his three-year-old debut in the nine-horse opening split. The son of Chapter Seven won four of eight starts and banked $226,768 last season. Snowstorm Hanover (PP3, Matt Kakaley), who won last year's Valley Victory at Woodbine, will hope a return to Canadian soil will help him get back into the winner's circle, as the Burke trainee is winless in three starts this season. The second elimination, which has a field of eight, is headlined by Ontario Sires Stakes Super Final champ Mass Production (PP3, Rick Zeron). The gelded son of Muscle Mass made a break in his only start this season after winning five of nine and banking $285,673 as a rookie. The top-five finishers from each elimination will advance to the $251,000 Goodtimes final on Saturday, June 17. The eliminations are carded as Races 5 and 8 on Friday. Post time on Friday and Saturday night is 7:30 p.m. The finals of all the stakes eliminations being contested this weekend will take place on the Pepsi North America Cup card on Saturday, June 17. Total purses for Pepsi North America Cup night will exceed $2.4 million. Tickets are currently available for the Pepsi North America Cup and can be purchased by clicking here. Below are the full fields for the eliminations of the Armbro Flight, Goodtimes, Roses Are Red and Fan Hanover.   Friday, June 9 Armbro Flight - Sire - Elimination #1 (Race 3) 1. Hannelore Hanover - Swan For All - (Yannick Gingras - Ron Burke) 2. Emoticon Hanover - Kadabra - (Sylvain Filion - Luc Blais) 3. Non Stick - Lucky Chucky - (Chris Christoforou - Ake Svanstedt) 4. Oho Diamond - Ken Warkentin - (Chris Christoforou - Renaldo Morales III) 5. Ready Any Time - Kadabra - (Jack Moiseyev - Dagfin Henriksen) 6. Kestrel - Triumphant Caviar - (Trevor Henry - Chris Beaver) 7. Renegade Magic - Kadabra - (Trevor Henry - Jeffrey Thomson)   Armbro Flight - Elimination #2 (Race 6) 1. Broadway Donna - Donato Hanover - (David Miller - Jim Campbell) 2. Caprice Hill - Kadaba - (Doug McNair - Tony Alagna) 3. Lady Ping - Muscle Mass - (Jack Moiseyev - Dagfin Henriksen) 4. Flowers N Songs - Deweycheatumnhowe - (Randy Waples - Paul Reid) 5. Charmed Life - Majestic Son - (Louis Philippe Roy - Rene Allard) 6. Pink Pistol - Cantab Hall - (Tim Tetrick - Peter Shody) 7. Majestic Presence - Majestic Son - (Chris Christoforou - Dagfin Henriksen)   Goodtimes - Elimination #1 (Race 5) 1. Ice Hockey Hanover - Donato Hanover - (Paul MacDonell - Mike Keeling) 2. Jake - Muscle Hill - (Sylvain Filion - Luc Blais) 3. Snowstorm Hanover - Muscle Massive - (Matt Kakaley - Ron Burke) 4. Seven And Seven - Chapter Seven - (Tom Durand - Tom Durand) 5. Guardian Angel As - Archangel - (Tim Tetrick - Anette Lorentzon) 6. Scene A Magician - Daylon Magician (Jack Moiseyev - Jennifer Pinkerton) 7. Southwind Woody - Muscle Hill - (Yannick Gingras - Ron Burke) 8. Dunbar Hall - Deweycheatumnhowe - (Jody Jamieson - Carl Jamieson) 9. International Moni - Love You - (Scott Zeron - Frank Antonacci)   Goodtimes - Elimination #2 (Race 8) 1. Shake It Off Lindy - Crazed - (Brett Miller - Frank Antonacci) 2. Manssive -  Muscle Mass - (Jody Jamieson - Howard Okusko Jr) 3. Mass Production - Muscle Mass - (Rick Zeron - Rick Zeron) 4. Resita - Manofmanymission - (Randy Waples - Per Henriksen) 5. Enterprise - Chapter Seven - (Tim Tetrick - Marcus Melander) 6. Awol Hanover - Donato Hanover - (TBA - Luc Blais) 7. Dancer Hall - Deweycheatumnhowe - (Sylvain Filion - Paul Reid) 8. Southwind Cobra - Muscle Hill - (Yannick Gingras - Ron Burke)   Saturday, June 10 Roses Are Red - Elimination #1 (Race 2) 1. Witch Dali - Dali - (Doug McNair - Richard Moreau) 2. Blue Moon Stride - Rocknroll Hanover - (Andrew McCarthy - Mark Harder) 3. Bernadette - Big Jim - (Yannick Gingras - Ron Adams) 4. Darlinonthebeach - Somebeachsomewhere - (David Miller - Nancy Johansson) 5. Lakeisha Hall - Third Straight - (Matt Kakaley - Ron Burke) 6. Frost Damage Blues - Western Ideal - (Brett Miller - Tom Fanning) 7. Pure Country - Somebeachsomewhere - (Brett Miller - Jimmy Takter)   Roses Are Red - Elimination #2 (Race 6) 1. Penpal - American Ideal - (Pat Lachance - Pat Lachance) 2. Call Me Queen Be - Somebeachsomewhere - (Scott Zeron - Tony O'Sullivan) 3. Sandbetweenurtoes - Somebeachsomewhere - (Doug McNair - Richard Moreau) 4. Windsun Glory - Mach Three - (Matt Kakaley - Ron Burke) 5. Nike Franco N - McArdle - (Tim Tetrick - Joann Looney King) 6. Solar Sister - Mach Three - (Brian Sears - Gregg McNair) 7. Bedroomconfessions - American Ideal - (Scott Zeron - Tony Alagna) 8. Lyons River Pride - Somebeachsomewhere - (Jody Jamieson - Bruce Goit)   Roses Are Red - Elimination #3 (Race 10) 1. Wrangler Magic - Mach Three - (Louis Philippe Roy - Rene Allard) 2. Sassa Hanover - Rock N Roll Heaven - (Matt Kakaley - Ron Burke) 3. Seventimesavirgin - Always A Virgin - (John De Long - John De Long) 4. Waasmula - Million Dollar Cam - (Trevor Henry - Bruce Goit) 5. Lady Shadow - Shadow Play - (Yannick Gingras - Ron Adams) 6. Lay Lady Lay - Up The Credit - (Trevor Henry - Chris Matthews) 7. Prairie Sweetheart - Royal Milennium - (Matt Kakaley - Tony O'Sullivan) 8. Ms Mac N Cheese - Badlands Hanover - (Sylvain Filion - Richard Moreau)   Fan Hanover - Elimination #1 (Race 5) 1. Al Mar Got A Fever - Third Straight - (Brian Sears - Mike Weller) 2. Roaring To Go - Art Major - (Brett Miller - Kevin Lare) 3. Soiree Seelster - Big Jim - (Sylvain Filion - Tony O'Sullivan) 4. Jayes A Lady - McArdle - (Brett Miller - Nancy Johansson) 5. Dancing Shadows K - Shadow Play - (Yannick Gingras - Rod Boyd) 6. Future Headlines - Sportswriter - (Jonathan Drury - Colin Johnson) 7. Idyllic Beach - Somebeachsomewhere - (Yannick Gingras - Jimmy Takter) 8. Blameitonthenight  - Mach Three - (Jonathan Drury - Tony Alagna) 9. Roselily - Big Jim - (Travis Cullen - Richard Moreau)   Fan Hanover - Elimination #2 (Race 7) 1. Agent Q - Western Terror - (David Miller - Aaron Lambert) 2. Obvious Blue Chip - Roll With Joe - (James MacDonald - Mark Steacy) 3. Action Majesty - Royal Mattjesty - (Brian Sears - Gregg McNair) 4. Dudesalady - Shadow Play - (TBA - Howard Okusko Jr) 5. American Sara - American Ideal - (Sylvain Filion - Murray Brethour) 6. Tequila Monday - American Ideal - (Brian Sears - Chris Oakes) 7. Shes Watching - Rocknroll Hanover - (Scott Zeron - Tony Alagna) 8. Bettors Up - Bettor's Delight - (Doug McNair - Scott McEneny) 9. Someomensomewhere - Somebeachsomewhere - (Tim Tetrick - Jimmy Takter) 10. Aint Three Ok - Mach Three - (Trevor Henry - Mike Weller) Mark McKelvie

Campbellville, ON --- Mohawk Racetrack has announced that 25 sophomore pacing colts and geldings have been entered in this year’s $1 million Pepsi North America Cup. The entry box for the Pepsi North America Cup closed this morning at 10:30 a.m.  The 25 pacers will be drawn into three eliminations, to be contested this Saturday (June 10). The top three finishers plus a fourth-place finisher drawn by lot will advance to the $1 million final on Saturday (June 17). The entry total of 25 is the largest number of entries received for the Pepsi North America Cup since 2010 when 30 were entered. Below are the fields: Elimination 1 (Race 3) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Lawrencetown Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Paul MacDonell 2 – Ideal Wheel – American Ideal - Louis-Philippe Roy 3 – Western Hill – Western Ideal - Doug McNair 4 – Downbytheseaside – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 5 – Some Attitude – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 6 – Eddard Hanover – Dragon Again - Matt Kakaley 7 – Sports Column – Sportswriter - Chris Christoforou 8 – Stealth Bomber – Rocknroll Hanover - Brett Miller Elimination 2 (Race 8) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Arsenal Seelster – Artistic Fella - Jonathan Drury 2 – Huntsville – Somebeachsomewhere - Tim Tetrick 3 – Beckhams Z Tam – Always A Virgin - Richard Macomber 4 – Classic Pro – Shadow Play - Trevor Henry 5 – Ozone Blue Chip – Bettor's Delight - Tim Tetrick 6 – Normandy Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 7 – Beyond Delight – Bettor's Delight - Sylvain Filion 8 – Miso Fast – Roll With Joe - Matt Kakaley 9 – Richard Hill – Mach Three - Doug McNair Elimination 3 (Race 9) (Post – Horse – Sire - Listed Driver) 1 – Mac's Jackpot – Somebeachsomewhere - David Miller 2 – Hurricane Beach – Somebeachsomewhere - Louis-Philippe Roy 3 – Filibuster Hanover – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 4 – Mc Mach – Mach Three - Paul MacDonell 5 – Darling's Dragon – Dragon Again - Donald Dupont 6 – Ocean Colony – Somebeachsomewhere - Yannick Gingras 7 – Fear The Dragon – Dragon Again - David Miller 8 – Streakavana – Big Jim - Sylvain Filion  

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 2 - Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) today announced that Matt Martin, left-winger for the Toronto Maple Leafs, will be the guest drawmaster for the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup. The Pepsi North America Cup draw will take place on Tuesday, June 13 at Mohawk Racetrack and Martin, 28, will be on hand to assist with the festivities. The draw and press conference will begin at noon. A native of Windsor, Ontario, Martin recently concluded his seventh season in the National Hockey League (NHL) and first with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The tough winger played in all 82 regular season games and provided a physical presence in the young Maple Leafs lineup. Martin signed a four-year $10 million contract with the Maple Leafs in the summer of 2016 after spending seven seasons in the New York Islanders organization. The 6'3 left-winger played his junior hockey with the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League and was drafted in the fifth round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft by the Islanders. Martin's career numbers currently sit at 47 goals, 50 assists, 97 points and 803 penalty minutes in 520 NHL regular season games played. Martin is active on social media and can be found on Twitter and Instagram (@mattymarts17), The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup will take place on Saturday, June 17. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, May 23 - Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) today announced that 44 harness racing three-year-old pacers will be eligible to enter this year's Pepsi North America Cup. The final sustaining payment for Canada's richest harness race was due May 15 and the connections of 44 three-year-old pacing colts and geldings selected to make the final payment. The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup will take place on Saturday, June 17 at Mohawk Racetrack. The eliminations will take place a week prior on Saturday, June 10. A total of 53 three-year-olds were eligible heading into the May 15 payment. Originally, 60 horses were nominated in February to this year's Pepsi North America Cup. The list of 44 eligible three-year-olds is headlined by Downbytheseaside and Huntsville. The top two pacing colts heading into the season have both made noise early on in their three-year-old campaigns. Brian Brown's Downbytheseaside is two for two to start the season with comfortable victories in a Pennsylvania Sires Stakes (PASS) division and the elimination of the Art Rooney. Huntsville, who won last year's Dan Patch Award for his division, has also made two starts this season. The Ray Schnittker trainee won his three-year-old debut by a stunning ten lengths in a PASS division on May 6, before finishing second to Brown trainee and Cup eligible Fear The Dragon on May 21. The list of eligible three-year-olds also includes Metro Pace winner Beyond Delight, Champlain division winner Ideal Wheel, New York Sires Stakes standout Miso Fast and Battle of Waterloo winner Sports Column. This year's Pepsi North America Cup will be the 34th edition and it promises to be the biggest. Admission to the Pepsi North America Cup, including concert featuring country star Kira Isabella, is $10 and tickets can be purchased here. Below is the full list of eligible three-year-olds to this year's Pepsi North America Cup. AIR STRIKE - Always A Virgin AMERICAN SPORTSMAN - Somebeachsomewhere ARSENAL SEELSTER - Artistic Fella BEACH HOUSE - Somebeachsomewhere BECKHAMS Z TAM - Always A Virgin BETTOR'S WESTERN - Bettor's Delight BEYOND DELIGHT - Bettor's Delight BLOOD LINE - Somebeachsomewhere CALVIN K - Classic Card Shark CLASSIC PRO - Shadow Play DARLING'S DRAGON - Dragon Again DIAL THE BOSSMAN - Artistic Fella DOWNBYTHESEASIDE - Somebeachsomewhere DRAGNET ALERT - Dragon Again EDDARD HANOVER - Dragon Again FEAR THE DRAGON - Dragon Again FILIBUSTER HANOVER - Somebeachsomewhere HENRY THE DRAGON - Custard The Dragon HUNTSVILLE - Somebeachsomewhere HURRICANEBEACH - Somebeachsomewhere IDEAL WHEEL - American Ideal LAWRENCETOWN BEACH - Somebeachsomewhere MAC ATTACK - Somebeachsomewhere MAC'S JACKPOT - Somebeachsomewhere MAJOR MOE - Art Major MC MACH - Mach Three MISO FAST - Roll With Joe NORMANDY BEACH - Somebeachsomewhere OCEAN COLONY - Somebeachsomewhere ODDS ON DELRAY - Somebeachsomewhere OZONE BLUE CHIP - Bettor's Delight PERFECTLY CLOSE - Ponder PHOTOBOMBR HANOVER - Somebeachsomewhere R J P - Somebeachsomewhere RICHARD HILL - Mach Three SANTAFE'S COACH - Bettor's Delight SOME ATTITUDE - Somebeachsomewhere SPORTS COLUMN - Sportswriter STEALTH BOMBER - Rocknroll Hanover STREAKAVANA - Big Jim THREE MORE SMILES - Mach Three TWIN B COWBOY - Roll With Joe  WESTERN HILL - Western Ideal WHO SAID NOT TO - Well Said Number of eligible horses: 44 Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, May 8 - With the Pepsi North America Cup 40 days away, 11 eligible harness racing three-year-old pacing colts and geldings made a stop by Mohawk Racetrack to qualify on Monday morning. The Pepsi North America Cup eligible horses competed over the course of three different qualifying races on Monday. The qualifiers were raced under sunny skies, but a stiff wind and 'Good' racing surface still recovering from multiple days of rain allowed for a two-second variant. The first qualifier of the morning saw Cup eligible Ideal Wheel turn in the fastest mile of the day, with a 1:53.4 victory. The Casie Coleman trainee got away fourth with driver Jonathan Drury and sat there until the far turn before getting involved. Cup eligible Mc Mach set solid fractions on the lead and led the field by three-quarters in 1:24.3. Ideal Wheel, who was third and a few lengths from the leader turning for home, was able to track down Mc Mach in the lane and surged by with a final-quarter of :28.1 to score a four-length victory. Bob McIntosh trainee Mc Mach, who was the only other Cup eligible in the field, held on for second. A son of American Ideal, Ideal Wheel was qualifying for the first time as a three-year-old after winning three of six and banking $157,505 as a rookie. The ninth qualifier of the morning saw five Cup eligible three-year-olds competing. Blake MacIntosh trainee Sports Column was a little hesitant moving into the first turn for driver Chris Christoforou, but once he cleared to command entering the backstretch, it was game over. The son of Sportswriter posted fractions of :58 and 1:27, before firing home in :28.2 to score a comfortable three-length victory in 1:55.2. Cup eligible Streakavana, who was the leader at the opening-quarter, held his position to finish second for trainer Scott McEneny. Patrick Shepherd trainee Western Hill, who is also eligible to the Cup, rounded out the top three finishers. Tony O'Sullivan trainee Calvin K was fifth, while McEneny's Bettors Dream was seventh to round out the Cup eligible three-year-olds in the field. Sports Column's two-year-old season was brief, but the Ontario sired colt made an impact. The MacIntosh trainee won four of six starts, including the Battle of Waterloo, for earnings of $222,000. The 11th qualifier featured the final four Cup eligible three-year-olds of the day. Metro Pace champion Beyond Delight fought off fellow-Cup eligible Some Attitude to win by a head in 1:56. Sylvain Filion drove the Tony O'Sullivan trainee to victory. Beyond Delight capitalized off a two-hole trip to score the victory by angling out at the top of the stretch and pacing a final-quarter of :29.3. McIntosh trainee Some Attitude rallied with a :28.4 final-quarter to come up just short. The other two Cup horses in the field, Bill Robinson's Three More Smiles and Shepherd's Richard Hill, finished fifth and sixth, respectively. A son of Bettor's Delight, Beyond Delight won three of 11 starts as a rookie, including the Metro Pace and Champlain Stakes, for earnings of over $400,000. The O'Sullivan trainee was making his first qualifying appearance of the season Monday. Almost all of the 53 Pepsi North America Cup eligible three-year-olds have now qualified this season and connections have until May 15 to make a decision on submitting the final sustaining payment. Also on Monday, older pacing star Shamballa won a qualifier by more than eight-lengths in 1:55.1 for trainer/driver Rick Zeron. The seven-year-old, who's won more than $900,000 in his career, has now qualified twice this season. Zeron's barn also sent out three-year-old trotting gelding Mass Production and last year's Ontario Sires Stakes Super Final champion went gate-to-wire for a 1:57.2 score. Other winner's from Monday's 14-race qualifying session included, Preferred trotter Lookslikeachpndale, OSS standout Tycoon Seelster and Breeders Crown finalist Cameron Hill. Live racing resumes Monday night at Mohawk. Post time for the 10-race card is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie - WEG Communications  

CAMPBELLVILLE, April 25 - The Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) today released the latest update of eligible harness racing horses for this year's Pepsi North America Cup. Following the April 15 sustaining payment, 53 three-year-old pacers remain eligible to the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup, to be raced on Saturday, June 17 at Mohawk Racetrack. Eliminations will take place on Saturday, June 10. The latest sustaining payment saw just three horses drop out after 56 three-year-olds were kept eligible following the first sustaining payment. Originally, 60 three-year-old pacers were nominated to this year's race. The list of 53 eligible pacers is led by last year's rookie sensations Downbytheseaside and Huntsville. Downbytheseaside, who is trained by Brian Brown, qualified for the first time this season on April 19 at Miami Valley Racing in Ohio and won in 1:53.4. The son of Somebeachsomewhere is entered to qualify again at Miami Valley on Wednesday afternoon. Huntsville, the 2016 Dan Patch Award winner, turned in his first qualifying mile of the season on April 22 at The Meadowlands. The Ray Schnittker trainee paced a :26.2 final-quarter to power by a pair of rivals in the stretch for a 1:53.2 victory. With many of the Pepsi North America Cup eligibles starting to appear on the racetrack, the connections of the 53 three-year-olds will have charted performances to assess in advance of the final Pepsi North America Cup sustaining payment, which is due on May 15. Below is the up to date list of eligible horses to this year's Pepsi North America Cup. AIR STRIKE - Always A Virgin AMERICAN SPORTSMAN - Somebeachsomewhere ARSENAL SEELSTER - Artistic Fella ART SCENE - American Ideal BEACH HOUSE - Somebeachsomewhere BECKHAMS Z TAM - Always A Virgin BETTORS DREAM - Bettor's Delight BETTOR'S WESTERN - Bettor's Delight BEYOND DELIGHT - Bettor's Delight BLOOD LINE - Somebeachsomewhere CALVIN K - Classic Card Shark CLASSIC PRO - Shadow Play DARLING'S DRAGON - Dragon Again DIAL THE BOSSMAN - Artistic Fella DOWNBYTHESEASIDE - Somebeachsomewhere DRAGNET ALERT - Dragon Again EDDARD HANOVER - Dragon Again FEAR THE DRAGON - Dragon Again FILIBUSTER HANOVER - Somebeachsomewhere HENRY THE DRAGON - Custard The Dragon HUNTSVILLE - Somebeachsomewhere HURRICANEBEACH - Somebeachsomewhere IDEAL WHEEL - American Ideal LAWRENCETOWNBEACH - Somebeachsomewhere LINDYTHEFOURTEENTH - Somebeachsomewhere MAC ATTACK - Somebeachsomewhere MAC'S JACKPOT - Somebeachsomewhere MAJOR MOE - Art Major MC MACH - Mach Three MISO FAST - Roll With Joe MR VARSITY - Roll With Joe NORMANDYBEACH - Somebeachsomewhere OCEAN COLONY - Somebeachsomewhere ODDS ON DELRAY - Somebeachsomewhere OZONE BLUE CHIP - Bettor's Delight PERFECTLY CLOSE - Ponder PHOTOBOMBR HANOVER - Somebeachsomewhere R J P - Somebeachsomewhere RICHARD HILL - Mach Three ROCK IT SCOTT - Roll With Joe ROCK THIS WAY - Rocknroll Hanover SANTAFE'S COACH - Bettor's Delight SOME ATTITUDE - Somebeachsomewhere SPORTS COLUMN - Sportswriter STEALTH BOMBER - Rocknroll Hanover STREAKAVANA - Big Jim TALBOT ROMEO - Roll With Joe  THREE MORE SMILES - Mach Three TWIN B COWBOY - Roll With Joe  WESTERN HILL - Western Ideal WHO SAID NOT TO - Well Said WINDSONG NAPOLEON - Art Major YOUNG DRUNK PUNK - Bettor's Delight   Sustaining Payment #2 - 53 horses Sustaining Payment #1 - 56 horses Nominated - 60 horses   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, March 23 - The connections of 56 harness racing three-year-old pacers have made the first sustaining payment to remain eligible to the 34th Pepsi North America Cup. The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup is Canada's richest harness race and will take place on Saturday, June 17 at Mohawk Racetrack. A total of 60 three-year-olds were originally nominated and all but four have been kept eligible through the first sustaining payment. Ray Schnittker trainee Huntsville and Brian Brown trainee Downbytheseaside headline the group of eligible three-year-olds. Both colts are sired by 2008 Pepsi North America Cup champion Somebeachsomewhere and both set World Records during their rookie campaigns. 2016 Metro Pace winner Beyond Delight, who is trained by Tony O'Sullivan, is another notable pacer on the list eligible three-year-olds. The son of Bettors Delight won the O'Brien Award as Canada's top two-year-old pacing colt in 2016. The eliminations for this year's Pepsi North America Cup will take place on Saturday, June 10. The $1 million final will take place the following week. The next sustaining payment for the Pepsi North America Cup is due April 15. The fee is $1,000 CAD or $715 USD. Below is the list of current eligible three-year-old pacers to the 2017 Pepsi North America Cup. AIR STRIKE by Always A Virgin AMERICAN SPORTSMAN by Somebeachsomewhere ARSENAL SEELSTER by Artistic Fella ART SCENE by American Ideal BEACH HOUSE by Somebeachsomewhere BECKHAMS Z TAM by Always A Virgin BETTORS DREAM by Bettor's Delight BETTOR'S WESTERN by Bettor's Delight BEYOND DELIGHT by Bettor's Delight BLOOD LINE by Somebeachsomewhere CALVIN K by Classic Card Shark CLASSIC PRO by Shadow Play CLOUSEAU HANOVER by Western Ideal DARLING'S DRAGON by Dragon Again DIAL THE BOSSMAN by Artistic Fella DOWNBYTHESEASIDE by Somebeachsomewhere DRAGNET ALERT by Dragon Again EDDARD HANOVER by Dragon Again FEAR THE DRAGON by Dragon Again FILIBUSTER HANOVER by Somebeachsomewhere HENRY THE DRAGON by Custard The Dragon HUNTSVILLE by Somebeachsomewhere HURRICANEBEACH by Somebeachsomewhere IDEAL WHEEL by American Ideal LAWRENCETOWNBEACH by Somebeachsomewhere LINDYTHEFOURTEENTH by Somebeachsomewhere LYONS WELSH PRIDE by Roll With Joe LYONS WILLIAM by Big Jim MAC ATTACK by Somebeachsomewhere MAC'S JACKPOT by Somebeachsomewhere MAJOR MOE by Art Major MC MACH by Mach Three MISO FAST by Roll With Joe MR VARSITY by Roll With Joe NORMANDYBEACH by Somebeachsomewhere OCEAN COLONY by Somebeachsomewhere ODDS ON DELRAY by Somebeachsomewhere OZONE BLUE CHIP by Bettor's Delight PERFECTLY CLOSE by Ponder PHOTOBOMBR HANOVER by Somebeachsomewhere R J P by Somebeachsomewhere RICHARD HILL by Mach Three ROCK IT SCOTT by Roll With Joe ROCK THIS WAY by Rocknroll Hanover SANTAFE'S COACH by Bettor's Delight SOME ATTITUDE by Somebeachsomewhere SPORTS COLUMN by Sportswriter STEALTH BOMBER by Rocknroll Hanover STREAKAVANA by Big Jim TALBOT ROMEO by Roll With Joe THREE MORE SMILES by Mach Three TWIN B COWBOY by Roll With Joe WESTERN HILL by Western Ideal WHO SAID NOT TO by Well Said WINDSONG NAPOLEON by Art Major YOUNG DRUNK PUNK by Bettor's Delight   Sustain 1 Payment - 56 horses   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, March 3 - Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) today announced that 60 harness racing three-year-old pacers have been nominated to the 34th edition of the Pepsi North America Cup. The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup, Canada's richest harness race, will take place on Saturday, June 17 at Mohawk Racetrack. The eliminations will be held a week prior. Headlining the group of 60 eligible three-year-olds is Ray Schnittker trainee Huntsville and Brian Brown trainee Downbytheseaside. A fantastic rivalry developed over the course of 2016 between Huntsville and Downbytheseaside. The Schnittker trainee held a slight advantage in earnings and awards, but the Brown trainee got the last laugh on the racetrack with a dominant victory over his rival in the $520,000 Governor's Cup at Woodbine. Huntsville finished his rookie campaign with seven wins and four runner-up finishes in 11 starts for earnings of $720,234. The Schnittker trained colt's list of accomplishments includes the Pennsylvania Sires Stakes (PASS) Championship, Breeders Crown final and the Dan Patch Award as U.S Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year. Downbytheseaside made 13 starts in his two-year-old season and finished with eight wins, three seconds and a pair of third-place finishes for earnings of $644,706. The Brown trained colt won multiple Grand Circuit events, including the Governor's Cup, and finished second in both the PASS Championship and Breeders Crown. Huntsville and Downbytheseaside are both sired by 2008 Pepsi North America Cup champion Somebeachsomewhere and both left their mark on the World Record book as two-year-olds. Downbytheseaside set a World Record of 1:50 over the half-mile track at the Delaware County Fairgrounds in September, while also equaling the mile-track World Record of 1:49 in October at The Red Mile. On the same day Downbytheseaside blazed around the famed red clay oval, Huntsville also turned in a World Record equaling performance of 1:49 at the Lexington track. Huntsville won three of the five meetings against his rival during 2016, while Downbytheseaside won the other two. Metro Pace champion Beyond Delight is also on the list of eligible three-year-olds to this year's Pepsi North America Cup. The Tony O'Sullivan trainee won three of 11 starts last season and earned $423,305. Beyond Delight picked up all three of his rookie victories in consecutive weeks by sweeping the Metro Pace and capturing a division of the Champlain Stakes. The last Metro Pace winner to also win the Pepsi North America Cup was Captaintreacherous in 2013. Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Super Final champion Arsenal Seelster and OSS standout Streakavana are two of 11 Ontario sired three-year-old pacers eligible to this year's Cup. Nominations to the 2017 Pepsi North America Cup were up over last year's nomination total of 58. A total of three sustaining payments are required to remain eligible to the Pepsi North America Cup. The first sustaining payment ($1,000 - $715 USD) is due Wednesday, March 15. The final two payments are due April 15 and May 15. Below is the full list of eligible three-year-old pacers to this year's Pepsi North America Cup. AIR STRIKE AMERICAM NATION AMERICAN SPORTSMAN ARSENAL SEELSTER ART SCENE BEACH HOUSE BECKHAMS Z TAM BETTORS DREAM BETTOR'S WESTERN BEYOND DELIGHT BLOOD LINE CALVIN K CLASSIC PRO CLOUSEAU HANOVER DARLING'S DRAGON DIAL THE BOSSMAN DOWNBYTHESEASIDE DRAGNET ALERT EDDARD HANOVER FEAR THE DRAGON FILIBUSTER HANOVER HENRY THE DRAGON HUNTSVILLE HURRICANEBEACH IDEAL WHEEL LAWRENCETOWNBEACH LINDYTHEFOURTEENTH LYONS WELSH PRIDE LYONS WILLIAM MAC ATTACK MACS JACKPOT MAJOR MOE MC MACH MISO FAST MR VARSITY NORMANDYBEACH OCEAN COLONY ODDS ON DELRAY OFFDAHOOK BLUECHIP OZONE BLUE CHIP PASSPORT TO ART PERFECTLY CLOSE PHOTOBOMBR HANOVER R J P RICHARD HILL ROCK IT SCOTT ROCK THIS WAY SANTAFE'S COACH SHADOW ROUGE SOME ATTITUDE SPORTS COLUMN STEALTH BOMBER STREAKAVANA TALBOT ROMEO THREE MORE SMILES TWIN B COWBOY WESTERN HILL WHO SAID NOT TO WINDSONG NAPOLEON YOUNG DRUNK PUNK   Total horses nominated - 60   Mark McKelvie

FORT WASHINGTON, MD – Wakizashi Hanover reached the pinnacle of the harness racing world when he pulled off an upset victory over odds-on favorite Wiggle It Jiggleit in the $1 million North America Cup at Mohawk Raceway in June 2015. The pacing son of Dragon Again subsequently faded from the Standardbred spotlight and was sidelined due to a breathing problem that required two surgeries. The 4-year-old gelding, though, is on the comeback trail and may be ready to return to the spotlight in Tuesday evening’s $100,000 Potomac Pace at Rosecroft Raceway. A winner of $1.1 million in 2015 and named Canada’s champion 3-year-old pacing colt or gelding, Wakizashi Hanover became hampered by a paralyzed flap in his airway the end of the 2015 season and he underwent tie-back surgery in April. Winless in four starts after returning to action in July, the Pennsylvania-bred pacer underwent a second surgery in August that appears to have breathed new life into his racing career. “He had two different surgeries. The first was OK, but it wasn’t sufficient. He had another surgery and, since the second surgery, everything seems much closer to where he’s supposed to be,” said Jim King Jr., who trains Wakizashi Hanover in a partnership with his wife Joann Looney-King. In his two official starts since returning to action in November, both at Dover Downs in Delaware, Wakizashi Hanover lost a photo finish while finishing second and, most recently, closed from far back to capture an open handicap by a nose in 1:49.2. “He paced his last half in 53-and-3 (seconds) – that’s pretty good. I don’t care if you’re at the Meadowlands, 53-and-3 is pretty good,” said the 64-year-old trainer, who is based in his native Delaware. Wakizashi Hanover had demonstrated a strong late kick in the North America Cup, in which he defeated Wiggle It Jiggleit by three-quarters of a length in 1:48 for driver Tim Tetrick. “We were pretty confident going in, even knowing that Wiggle It Jiggleit was in the race. I had never seen a horse like Wiggle It Jiggleit before,” King said. “My horse was all about himself at that time. In the elimination, he was super-outstanding. His last quarter was 25-and-2 (seconds) against a good bunch of horses. The next week, he tripped out and did what he needed. He followed Wiggle It Jiggleit around there and, when the time came, he accelerated.” A similar performance would make Wakizashi Hanover mighty tough to beat in the Potomac Pace, which drew a field of eight, including Shamballa, who became the only horse to beat Wiggle It Jiggleit and Always B Miki in the same race while registering a career mark of 1:47.1 at Meadowlands in August. “I think that’s a tall order, but I think he can compete with the horses he’s in with (Tuesday). I saw a lot in the last two weeks that wasn’t there earlier, so I think he’s on the comeback trail,” said King, who will hand the reins to Trace Tetrick, Tim Tetrick’s younger brother. “I kinda wish he had one more start under him, but you go when the opportunity is there. I’m not going to be astonished if he wins. I think he has a real chance.” David Joseph

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