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The intermittent rain showers on Thursday afternoon, August 21 didn't deter Market Rally and Avalicious from their main objectives as each won their respective $60,200 divisions of 3-year-old trotting fillies in New York Sire Stakes at Monticello Raceway. Both fillies, from the powerful Ron Burke stable, were driven to victory by Jimmy Morrill, Jr.. The two trotting events were the last of the NYSS preliminary legs prior to the top point earners in the summer-long series convening at Yonkers Raceway on September 13 to compete in their $225,000 Division Final. With her victory in a time of 1:57.3 Market Rally finished with 325 points which will undoubtedly make her the favorite in her rich NYSS finale. Avalicious, on the other hand, was victorious in 1:57.4 and finished with 175 points as second best. There's no argument that Market Rally has been the best NYSS sophomore trotting filly this year and her 9-length victory over Gammy's Girl (Mark MacDonald) and Cutup Hanover (Jeff Gregory) only emphasized it. With her triumph on Thursday the daughter of Cash Hall-Supreme Dish has run her seasonal bankroll to over $262,000 on the strength of six wins and one second in nine starts. Sent off the1-9 favorite from the pole position Morrill hustled Market Rally to the lead as Gates Brunet and Driving Miss Crazy left strong from the six hole. The two fillies were wide open on the first turn but unfortunately for Driving Miss Crazy's connections she went off-stride and Market Rally was alone on the front-end when she tripped the first quarter timer in :28.2 Two lengths in front as she passed the half in :57 Morrill was looking to give his filly a breather. When she passed the third stanza in 1:27 Market Rally had a five length lead which she opened to nine at the wire. "We were getting out of there pretty quickly and I got my filly wound up, and because of that we got to the half faster than I wanted to, "Morrill related. But from there she was on cruise-control the rest of the way." Owned by the Burke Stable, Weaver-Buscemi, Our Cents Stable and the Panhellenic Stable, Market rally paid $2.30 for win. In the other NYSS split Morrill eased Avalicious away from the gate slowly and at the first quarter they were in sixth position, some nine lengths off the leader. Morrill bided his time in the early going and at the half he moved the filly out behind cover and it up the backside and into the final turn before he gave Avalicious her head. And when he did the daughter of RC Royalty-Say Your Prayers rallied to a three length victory, her fifth of the year. Asked why Avalious was four, or so, lengths off the gate at the start of the race Morrill explained; "I wanted to ease her away so she'd stay trotting. She gets a little anxious behind the gate but once she gets away (on the trot) she's usually steady the rest of the mile." Avalicious, owned by M.C. Crawford, A.C. Crawford and P.D. Crawford, was sent off as the 3-10 betting favorite and returned a $2.60 win mutuel. Three Excelsior Series trots bolstered the undercard with the locally owned Dreamsteeler the most impressive. (Local) owner Andy Herzog was on hand to watch his Cash Hall-Dream Street filly maul her competition with Jimmy Morrill, Jr. at the lines. It was Dreamsteeler's seventh win in eight seasonal starts after going 10 for 10 last year. Sent off five cents on a dollar, Dreamsteeler was victorious in a time of 2:01 and paid $2.10 for win. After the photo was taken in the winners circle Herzog was asked why Dreamsteeler doesn't race in the sire stakes. "I bought her in mid-June and she wasn't eligible to them (the NYSS), only to the Excelsior Series. But she's already won my money back and I got a pretty nice filly trotter to boot." Other Excelsior winners were Ski To The Max (Gates Brunet) in 2:02.1 and Slice Slice Baby (Charlei Norris) in 2:00.2. by John Manzi, for Monticello Raceway

Batavia, NY--- $110,000 is up for grabs in two divisions of New York Sire Stake action for freshman trotting colts and geldings on Wednesday night (Aug. 20) at Batavia Downs. The fourth race has seven horses going postward in the first division for $54,500 in purse money. Royal Deceptor (RC Royalty-Art Of Deception) went wire to wire in his career debut at Buffalo Raceway in a sparkling time of 1:59.3, which set a new track record. That win at Buffalo makes him one of only two horses in the race to be victorious over a half-mile track. He then won at Tioga before finishing third at Yonkers. After being scratched sick on August 2, Driver Michael Mc Givern elected to race the colt from behind rather than on the point like had all year. Assuming he needed that start after his 17 day layoff, Royal Deceptor has a great chance to rebound here with his early speed from post five for trainer Cheryl Mc Givern. Wings Of Royalty (RC Royalty-Sparkling Cider) has been spectacular on bigger tracks this year for trainer George Ducharme, but has had his challenges over the half-mile ovals. In his last four starts he has set two consecutive lifetime marks at Tioga Downs (1:57.4) and Vernon Downs (1:56) but in between has made breaks off the gate at Yonkers and Monticello Raceway. Regular driver Chris Lems will try to make him behave from the rail to get his third victory of the year. Pier Ho Exotic (Conway Hall-Rose Run Exotic) has had just the opposite history. He made breaks at Tioga and Vernon but has a win at Buffalo Raceway in 2:01, a second at Yonkers and a fifth at Monticello after being parked out most of the mile. Pier Ho Exotic is the other horse in the race to win over a half-mile track and John Cummings Jr. will once again be on board from post two for trainer Megan Wilson. The second $55,500 division is carded as race eight and has eight starters. It also features a battle between the top point's leaders for this sex and gait. Gabe The Bear Dean (Lucky Chucky-Madam Hooch) had a flawless performance last week at Monticello Raceway when he went gate to wire in 1:58.4. The four and three-quarter length victory was his fourth in six starts and boosted his earnings to $74,119 for the year. Trainer/driver Ray Schnittker will have to overcome post six in the full field of eight but has the gate speed to do it. Mambo Blue Chip (Lucky Chucky-Flirty Two) has been nearly flawless for trainer Linda Toscano his last four starts, winning three and finishing second by only half a length. Those victories helped bank his $68,169 for the year and leave him tied with Gabe The Bear Dean atop the NYSS leaderboard for 2-year-old trotting colts with 183 points. Mambo Blue Chip has Jeff Gregory aboard from the rail and that puts him in the perfect spot for his stalking style. Insomniac (Crazed-Catch Some Z's) has a win and two seconds since coming into the Paul Kelley stable on July 19 and that includes a 1:56.4 lifetime mark at Vernon Downs. In his other two starts he was narrowly defeated by today's favorites, Gabe The Bear Dean at Yonkers in 1:58.3 and Mambo Blue Chip at Monticello in 1:59.3. Jason Bartlett who has driven Insomniac for most of the year is aboard again, looking to avenge those defeats. There are also three divisions of the Excelsior series on the card with total purses amounting to $38,000. The most closely contested of those is the tenth race where Crashana (Crazed-Keystone Shana) is coming off back-to-back three length victories and is set to go against Lucky Budd (Lucky Chucky-Britt's Spirit) who also has back-to-back victories going into tonight. Both horses scored their wins on the same nights at the same tracks, but raced in different divisions. They also both sport 1:57.3 lifetime marks at Vernon Downs. Looking to play spoiler is Titanium (Conway Hall-Classic Yankee) who dropped into Excelsior action from the NYSS last week to collar his first win of the year at Monticello in 2:01.2, the same night Crashana and Lucky Budd raced and won. Facing these two for the first time and drawing inside them, Titanium will look to become the dominant trotter in this series tonight. Post time for the first race is 6:35. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Barn Doll got off to a slow start but she finished first and fastest of four divisions of New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old trotting fillies on Sunday (Aug. 17) at Batavia Downs. After getting away a gapped fourth, Barn Doll (Conway Hall-Headintheclouds) and driver Jeff Gregory watched as Jim Morrill Jr.'s Pig Hunt cut out speedy fractions of :29 and :59.3, while pulling just before that second station. After starting the outer flow, Barn Doll slowly advance towards the leader as they hit the three-quarters in 1:30 flat. Once being eased around the last turn, Gregory got the filly in gear and she simply out-motored the rest to win in an impressive 1:59.4. Summers Windsong (Ray Schnittker) who followed Pig Hunt the whole race was second and My Lucky Word (Mark MacDonald) closed outside to be third. The winner paid $4.70. This was the fifth win in seven starts for the Steve Pratt trained Barn Doll who has now earned $70,712 on the year for owners Steve and Nancy Pratt and the Purple Haze Stable. She is the current point's leader in the NYSS standings for her gait and sex. Nunkeri (Lucky Chucky-Laverne Lavec) won the second fastest division, going wire-to-wire in 2:01. After leaving hard to grab the lead, Mark MacDonald then grabbed leather to perfectly rate the game trotter through fractions of :30.1, 1:01.1, 1:31.4 before flying home in a brisk :29.1 to register the win. Betcha (Dan Daley) was second and Northern Obsession (Ray Schnittker) was third. Nunkeri paid $3.50. Nunkeri is owned by Millstream Inc. and the Nunkeri Stable and is trained by Jonas Czernyson. This was her second win in five starts in 2014 and brings her bank up to $49,825. Kaliska (Credit Winner-Armbro Vivian) also won her division in 2:01 but had to do it amidst an overabundance of road trouble. At the start of the race, Duolectra (Mark MacDonald) made a break which allowed Kaliska to inherit a quick lead. That lead was subsequently challenged by Summer Scent (Dan Daley) to the quarter in :30.2. Once she cleared, Kaliska and Ray Schnittker followed close behind while watching Concentration (Chris Lems), Frou Frou (Jim Morrill Jr.) and Spell That (Sam Schillaci) make breaks at various points of the mile. Once pulled, Kaliska out-dueled Summer Scent to the wire to win by almost two lengths. Kaliska returned $15.00 to win. The victory was the second of the year for Kaliska and pushed her earnings to $44,957 for owners Tom Spatorico, the Pepin Stable, Farm Alber Horse Racing LLC and Ray Schnittker, who is also her trainer. In the fourth split, Zanna Blu (RC Royalty-Zann's Fan) proved dominant in what became a very short field very fast. With an early scratch and Miss B'ville J (Jim Morrill Jr.) and Hot Start (Mark MacDonald) making breaks before the eighth pole, Zanna Blu found herself with a commanding lead and only three contenders behind her. Driver Gates Brunet took her through fractions of :30.3, 1:01.2 and 1:31.1 with a five-length lead, before shutting her down with a line-drive to a length and three-quarter win in 2:01.1. She returned $6.90 to her backers. This was the third win in six starts for Zanna Blu and her owners Albert Crawford, Michelle Crawford and James Crawford. The winners share pushed the Gates Brunet trained filly's cash total to $47,176 for 2014. There were also two divisions of the Excelsior series on the card. Meshugana Miss (Crazed-Darling Marissa) who was driven by Mark MacDonald won the first $12,600 division in 2:00.4 for owner/trainer Janice Conner. Long Summer (Prayer I Am-Summer Ran) driven by Jeff Gregory won the second $12,700 split in 2:04.2 for owner Roy Dobbins and trainer Andrew Byler. And Barn Girl (Cash Hall-Turquoise Sweetie) was driven by Mark MacDonald and won the last $12,700 session in 2:02.4 for owners Steve and Nancy Pratt. Barn Girl is trained by Howard Okusko. Driver Jim Morrill Jr. registered his 6,000 career driving victory in a non-betting Excelsior B race with Ron's Coren in 2:04.1. Along with the wins, Morrill has pocketed purses totaling $87,659,175 during his career and annually remains one of the highest UDR reinsmen in the sport. Drivers Jeff Gregory and Mark MacDonald both scored driving triples on the card. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Aug. 20) with post time at 6:35. The card features two divisions of the $110,000 New York Sires Stakes for 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

On what turned into a rainy, sloppy night at Vernon Downs, Royalist was a front-running winner in Leg 2 of the Racing Under Saddle Series. Royalist (RC Royalty-Chocolatto Chip) was sent right to the front from the outside post by Michelle Crawford and the colt never looked back.   He led through fractions of 29.1 for the quarter, 1:02 for the half, and 1:33.1 for three-quarters. A challenge did materialize from Blue Boy Yankee (Kristina Smith), who pestered the leader throughout the final quarter mile, but could never quite get by. The final time for the mile was 2:04.3.   The complete order of finish was: Royalist, Blue Boy Yankee, John-Michael, Vassar Hall, My Irish Molly, and Kash Now. Royalist is owned by Raymond W.J. Campbell Jr. of Belchertown, Massachusetts and trained by George Ducharme.   The top point getters from the first two legs of the Racing Under Saddle Series at Vernon Downs will return for the $5,000 Final on August 29.   The featured pari-mutuel race of the Saturday evening at Vernon Downs was the $6,500 seventh race. The winner was Moonlight Ransom (Artiscape-Windsun Caprice), driven by John Macdonald. This was the second win in a week for Moonlight Ransom. In similar fashion to the win on August 9, Moonlight Ransom was a gate-to-wire winner. He led through snappy fractions over a sloppy track of 26.2 for the quarter, 56 seconds for the half, and 1:25.1 for three-quarters.   The final time was 1:53. Market Force (Jimmy Whittemore) was forced four-wide at the top of the stretch and still managed to charge through the lane and win a close photo for second place. Oh My Joepa (Claude Huckabone III) finished third.   The complete order of finish was: Moonlight Ransom, Market Force, Oh My Joepa, Whitemountainpower, You Bet Your Glass, A Fool For Mark, Axiom Hanover, and Dutch Richman.   Live racing returns to Vernon Downs with an 11-race program on Thursday night. Post time will be 6:45pm.   by Michael Chamberlain, for Vernon Downs

Batavia, NY - The stars of tomorrow will be on display Sunday (Aug. 17) in four divisions of the $110,000 New York Sire Stake 2-year-old filly trot at Batavia Downs. The first $27,250 NYSS division is programed as race two. Concentration (Conway Hall-Super Starlet) has five NYSS starts to date with two wins and two seconds. Her only miss was at Buffalo when she made a break off the gate from post eight and never got involved. Concentration's seasonal mark is 1:58.2 at Vernon Downs and she is currently second in points on the leader board for this series. She draws post three in here for driver Chris Lems and trainer George Ducharme. Summer Scent (Malabar Man-Summer Hit) is coming off her fastest race time of the year but was also unable to take advantage of a pocket trip to get a victory like she did the week before. She is a very capable trotter over the small track and her 2:00.3 victory at Yonkers is evidence of that. Summer Scent hasn't missed a check in sire stake action and that has put $31,464 in her bank. Driver Dan Daley can use his fillies closing ability to track what looks to be some fast early fractions. Frou Frou (Conway Hall-Nowerland Hana) has four lifetime starts and all four were in NYSS action. After winning the first at Vernon Downs in 1:58.1, she finished a fast closing second in her last two. The Tony Alagna trained trotter has gone off the prohibitive favorite in all of her starts and will look to return to that early winning form in this latest attempt for leading NYSS driver Jim Morrill Jr. Race four is the second division and they will vie for $27,750. Betcha (Cash Hall-Sienna) has been showing good form for trainer/driver Dan Daley all year. She has two wins and a second in five NYSS efforts with a lifetime mark of 1:59.4 at Tioga Downs. Her good work has put $41,393 on her card as well. She is third overall in points and has proven she can win both in front and from behind and can handle any size track. She once again draws an inside post (2) and looks to be a solid contender. Nunkeri (Lucky Chucky-Lavern Lavec) won her first lifetime start in NYSS action at Tioga Downs in 1:59.4 and subsequently has three consecutive second place finishes for her efforts. But two of those were in this series and she came up short to the top two points' leaders respectively in each start. Like Betcha, Nunkeri is a handy horse and can race from any spot in the field. Mark MacDonald, who sat behind her in her lone victory and who had a big day at Batavia on August 1, will be in the bike for trainer Jonas Czernyson this week. Dancewithme Chuck (Lucky Chucky-Vail) and Counsellor AS (Conway Hall-Cordele AS) are both coming off NYSS victories last week at Saratoga Raceway and will be looking to further develop that success. The third leg goes for $27,250 and is carded as race six. Miss B'Ville (RC Royalty-South Jersey Angel) is a bit of an enigma, but a formidable force none the less. She trotted the best race of her life in NYSS action last week at Saratoga, winning wire-to-wire in 1:59.2 from the rail. The start before that, she made a break at Yonkers leaving from the same post. She also has a score at Buffalo Raceway in July and those victories bulked her earnings to $31,749 this year. The formidable training/driving team of Tracy Brainard and Jim Morrill Jr. will bring Miss B'Ville to the gate looking to notch win number three. Hot Start (Lucky Chucky-Mallelujah) raced against world record holder Mission Brief at the Meadowlands in an elimination of the Merrie Annabelle stake on July 25. That race went in 1:53.2 and Hot Start was obviously not ready for that kind of speed at this point of her career. However she did trot in 1:57 herself in that race and knocked over a second off her previous start over the same track. In her only half mile track encounter, Hot Start made a break in the first turn at Saratoga as she seemed to over-trot herself. How she handles the half at Batavia this week remains to be seen. The trainer/driver team of Czernyson and MacDonald send Hot Start to post. The fourth and final NYSS split goes for $27,750 and is listed as the eighth race. The prohibitive morning line favorite at 8-5 is Barn Doll (Conway Hall-Headintheclouds) and she was given that designation for good reason. She had strung four straight wins before last week, with her best effort a 1:59.1 victory at Yonkers. She is the top point getter in the sire stakes this year for her sex and gait for trainer Steve Pratt. Last week she made an uncharacteristic break in the first turn at Saratoga as the heavy 1-9 favorite and that took her completely out of contention. This week she draws the rail and driver Jeff Gregory will look to make amends for the only start she didn't hit the board all year. Pig Hunt (Conway Hall-Chippewa Street) has been red hot lately, scoring back-to-back round trip victories for trainer Janice Conner. Her 1:59.4 seasonal mark was also at Yonkers and her $45,981 earned is second best in this field. Although she drew post seven and lost Brennan for this start, there will be no lack of talent behind her in the bike as she picks up Jim Morrill Jr. There are also three divisions of the Excelsior Series worth a total of $38,000 on the twelve race card that features a trot in every event. Post time for Sunday's races is 1:15. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs  

The weather was far from perfect for the Batavia Downs leg of the New York Sire Stake 3-year-old trotting fillies on Wednesday (Aug. 13) as premature autumnal conditions presented cold temperatures, rain and a track rated as "good". But the tough got going and in one race, a major upset was the result. In the first $59,100 NYSS division, Avalicious (RC Royalty-Say Your Prayers) was sent off as the even-money favorite and proved her backers correct as she made a big move at the half and cruised home victorious. Off the gate, L Dees Scripture (Chris Lems) left for the lead and quickly faced a strong challenge from Oh Sweet Penelope (Dan Daley) up the backside. But just before the quarter that challenger made a break so Lems then guided L Dees Scripture unabated to the half in 1:01. At that point Avalicious was out and rolling from fourth with Jim Morrill Jr. at the lines to push the issue before swooping by the leader to take command at the three-quarters in 1:30.3. Once they cleared, Morrill gave the filly her head and she trotted away in easy fashion to win in 2:00.4. Beauty Of Gray (Jim Meittinis) shook loose for second and Lindys Crazy Dolly (Jeff Gregory) who was aired out hung on for third. Avalicious paid $4.30 to win for owners Michelle Crawford, Albert Crawford and Patricia Crawford. This was her fourth win in 11 starts this year and it pushed her earnings to $148,640 for trainer Ron Burke. The second $59,100 split saw a major upset occur when 1-9 favorite Market Rally made a break attempting to take an early lead. When the car pulled away to start the race, Driving Miss Crazy (Gates Brunet) and Gammy's Girl (Jim Meittinis) both left and got away 1-2 as they straightened out up the backstretch. Market Rally (Jim Morrill Jr.) had tucked fourth off the wings to let the field settle, but then was pulled and started rolling past the eighth pole. As they passed the quarter in :30 flat, Market Rally got ahead of the front runner to take the lead. But just as soon as she crossed over she made a break and ended up last, spotting the new leader about 10 lengths. That leader (Driving Miss Crazy) tended to her task, carrying the field to the half in 1:01.1 and the three-quarters in 1:30.4. After a dull outer-flow offered no challenge through the middle fractions, Annie's List (Tyler Buter) managed to overtake second and a still last Market Rally then tipped three-high around fading horses to start making up ground. As they straightened out for the stretch drive, Brunet was working Driving Miss Crazy to stay alert on the lead, Buter was urging Annie's List to catch her and Morrill was working Market Rally to make up lost ground. After a good stretch drive, the trio hit the wire a length apart from each other with Driving Miss Crazy victorious in 2:00.4. In a tight photo for place, Market Rally did in fact rally for second and Annie's List was third. In the shadow of the overwhelming favorite, Driving Miss Crazy was let go at 10-1 and paid $22.60 to those who supported her. This was the sixth win in 13 starts for Driving Miss Crazy (Crazed-Schare Hall) who has now earned $124,017 in 2014 for trainer Gates Brunet and owners Theodore Gewertz, Y Jean Brunet and Deborah Brunet. There were also two divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card and chalk bettors were in heaven as favorites dominated both races. Right after the $12,600 first division started, Little Baby Peanut (Jeff Gregory) and Twist Of Faith (Tyler Buter) both made breaks as the group motored into the first turn. That left Classic Belisima (Gates Brunet) on a loose lead with Do You Believe (Jim Morrill Jr.) getting the trip as the group went single-file to the quarter in :30.4 and the half in 1:02.2. Past the five-eighths Morrill pulled the pocket sitter and drew even with Classic Belisima and the two went stride for stride around the entire last turn. When they straightened out, Do You Believe proved to be the better horse as she pulled away to a two-length victory in 2:01.4. Classic Belisima hung on for second and Ginny And Tonic (Ray Fisher Jr.) got up for third. Do You Believe paid $2.30 as the heavy favorite for owners Brian Doolittle and Leigh Raymer, who also trains the filly. In the second $12,700 division, Dreamsteeler (Cash Hall-Dream Street) turned in the fastest time of any of the stake races during the night, be they NYSS or Excelsior, in a dominating performance for trainer Tracy Brainard. Driver Jim Morrill Jr. eased Dreamsteeler out of the gate and took his time getting to the front. But once they got there the filly was brave and Morrill had his hands full rating the mile. However he did a perfect job as they scooted through even fractions of :30, 1:00 and 1:30. Down the lane, Morrill sat chilly as Dreamsteeler just jogged home in 1.59.4. How Bout Cash (Chris Lems) and Slice Slice Baby (Tyler Buter) completed the top three finishers in that order. Dreamsteeler went off 1-9 and paid $2.20 to win. It was her sixth win in seven starts and brought the 2014 Excelsior points leading filly's coffers up to $34,950. Driver Jim Morrill Jr. brought home four winners on the night and Gates Brunet and Tyler Buter both piloted doubles. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday (Aug. 15) with a 6:35 pm post. by Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- The $118,200 New York Sire Stake for 3-year-old trotting fillies invades Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Aug. 13) and features the top series performer of the year so far for her sex and gait. Market Rally (Cash Hall-Supreme Dish) enters the night riding a five race winning streak, all in NYSS competition. Her dominance of this group is reflected in the combined 21 length total margin of victory over the course of those races. To date, Market Rally is currently the top point-getter in her division of the NYSS, doubling her nearest competitor. She has won purses amounting to $218,025 and has taken a lifetime mark of 1:54.4 at Tioga Downs for trainer Ron Burke. That $218,025 purse total ranks her fourth in North America for purses won by 3-year-old trotting fillies and eighth for earnings by 3-year-old trotters of either sex. In her last two starts at Yonkers and Saratoga Raceway, Market Rally's win times were 1:56.4 and 1:55.4 respectively. The Batavia Downs track record for 3-year-old trotting fillies is 1:57.2 set by Cowgirl Hall in 2012 and then equalled by Bouncing Bax in 2013. So the track record has a very good chance of being reset on Wednesday night. Market Rally will be driven by leading NYSS reinsman Jim Morrill Jr. and has been installed as the track handicapper's prohibitive morning-line favorite at 1-5. Annies List (Conway Hall-Lasting Forever) is the second highest money-earner in this race ($126,273) but has a penchant for finishing second (6 out of 9 starts). She likes to race from off the pace and has solid final quarter speed. Starting in this short field and having Market Rally to give her live cover in an outer flow, Annies List is a definite threat for trainer Amber Buter and driver Tyler Buter. Driving Miss Crazy (Crazed-Schare Hall) has been racing sharp of late for trainer-driver Gates Brunet. She won at Saratoga in 1:57.2 two starts back and tried to out-foot Market Rally last week as she cut the mile at Yonkers. A similar pattern looks to be taking shape here and her success seems dependenton how fast the fractions go. The first $59,100 division is a wide open affair that has 8-5 Avalicious co-favored with 9-5 Beauty Of Gray. Avalicious (RC Royalty-Say Your Prayers) won an elimination of the Empire Breeders Classic and finished second in the $217,725 final at Vernon Downs in June. Since that start the filly has encountered some breaking issues in two of her last five starts. Road trouble in her last two further cost her success. Beauty Of Gray (Conway Hall-Armbro Sparkle) has raced well but has not been able to get across first at all in 2014. She has four seconds on her card in her last five outings and has earned just under $100,000 for the year. Jim Meittinis has driven Beauty Of Gray in every start this year and will try to garner her first win of the season for trainer Tommy Anderson. Trainer Julie Miller has a stable entry in the race and that two-for-one offering has been made a 2-1 morning selection. L Dees Scripture (Credit Winner-Graceful Way) and Maud Blue Chip (Credit Winner-Queen Of The Moor) will start from posts one and five respectively and have some of the faster race times on their card in recent outings. L Dees Scripture has only one win this year and that was over a sloppy track at Yonkers on July 14. She has faced Market Rally in four of her last five starts and is getting some definite post relief this week as well and that may be all she needs to score win number two. Maud Blue Chip made her first start for the Miller Stable just three starts ago and has finished third on all three occasions. However she was raced timed faster in each start and should be in a decent stalking position at the end of the mile. There are also two divisions of the Excelsior A Series on the card going for a total of $25,300. In the first division Leigh Raymer's Do You Believe (Crazed-Believe Hanover) has been made the 8-5 morning line choice and in the second split, 8-5 early favorite Dreamsteeler (Cash Hall-Dream Street) brings her three race winning streak to town for trainer Tracy Brainard. Both horses will be driven by Jim Morrill Jr. Racing fans unable to attend the races Wednesday night can watch the entire NYSS filled program on Time Warner Cable channel 98, in Rochester and the surrounding counties. Post time for the 12 race card is 6:35. By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs  

The two year olds were back at Ocean Downs for the Maryland Standardbred Fund races on a beautiful Sunday night with the super moon coming up over the backstreatch. The first of 7 stakes races on the card produced a new stakes and track record for 2 YO trotting fillies when Stories To Tell(RC Royalty) charged out of the gate and never looked back stopping the timer in 2:00.2 for driver and trainer Truman Gale. George Ducharme, Robert Guerrini and Paul Fontaine are the owners. Sign And Drive(Cr Commando) driven by Vic Kirby got up for place.   The first division of 2 YO pacing fillies was up next. Corey Callahan picked up the drive on Smart Zone (Rocknroll Hanover) an Erv Miller trainee and he did not disappoint the crowd. Smart Zone left quickly from post six getting to the top and let everyone else eat her dust stopping the clock in 1:57.1 for owners Paymaq Racing and D & M Trading. Hillbillysweetshrk(Cam's Card Shark) finished second for Hillbilly Haven Farm.   Maryland sired Toms Tornado (Cam's Rocket) and KJ Ben (Riggins) had a rematch in the first division of colt/gelding pacers and this time Toms Tornado came away the winner in 1:56, with Quick Art (Artzina) hanging on for second and KJ Ben crossing the wire in third. Roger Hans trains for owner Thomas Cooke and Jonathan Roberts was the reinsman.   Broken Record(Muscles Yankee) a half brother to the great Vivid Photo remains undefeated in his two starts in the Maryland Standardbred Fund stakes for 2 YO trotting colts and geldings. With regular driver Ray Schnittker unable to be here, Corey Callahan picked up the drive and the win with a mile in 2:00.1. Ray Schnittker co-owns the colt with Theodore Gewertz. Maryland sired Doggone Slots (Doggone Yankee) was second.   Driver Vic Kirby pulled Rumor Mill (The Panderosa) just passed the half, catching the leader Ideal Wedding (American Ideal) at the head of the stretch in the second division of 2 YO pacing fillies. Time for the mile was 1:59.2, Andi's Peanut (Bettor's Delight) got up for second. Jim King Jr. is the trainer for CC Racing and Joann Looney-King.   In second division of 2 YO trotting fillies driver Tyler Raymer took Sherbert (Lucky Chucky) to the front when several of the young ladies misbehaved early in the race. Miss Jocelyn (Impel Hanover) also cleared the breakers getting away second but she was never able to catch the leader. Leigh Raymer owns and trains Sherbert. Time for the mile was 2:03.   The final stake race of the night was the second division of 2 YO colt/gelding pacers. Toms Typhoon by Maryland sire Cam's Rocket remained undefeated winning his 4th start in 1:56 for owner Thomas Cooke, trainer Roger Hans and driver Jim Morand. Nuclear Dragon (Nuclear Breeze) finished second.   By Cheri Stambaugh

Monticello Raceway will offer over $165,000 to 2 year old trotting colts and geldings in the harness racing New York Sire Stakes and Excelsior Series on Monday afternoon, August 11. There will be three splits each in the NYSS and the Excelsior A and B Series. In years past there was hardly a 2-year old trotter who could even approach 2:00 on a double-oval much less win in that time or faster. But those days are long gone. At the Mighty M on Monday in NYSS action there are already three freshman colt trotters that own records of 2:00 or faster and none of those racing in the events have had more than four or five lifetime starts at this time. The second $35,867 division, race 5 on the card, appears to be the most competitive and features Royal Deceptor who won a NYSS trot at Yonkers Raceway on July 25 in 1:58.2. Mickey McGivern will handle the RC Royalty-Art Of Deception colt when they leave from the six hole. However, they'll have to contend with Ray Schnittker's Gabe The Bear Dean who also won an NYSS event at Yonkers but just a tick slower in 1:58.3. They'll start inside Royal Deceptor in the four-hole. And with the Chris Lems-driven, Wings of Royalty , a 1:56 winner in his last start over Tioga Downs 5/8th mile oval in post three, this heat figures to be a barn burner. Mambo Blue Chip, an even 2:00 winner at Yonkers on July 25, is the early line favorite in third $35,867 NYSS division, race 8. Jeff Gregory will handle the son of Lucky Chucky-Flirty Two when they leave from post three. The afternoon card will kick-off with the first $35,867 NYSS split. Pier Ho Exotic, from the pylon position, figures to be the favorite at post time. John Cummings, Jr. owns and will drive the Conway Hall-Rose Run Exotic gelding from the pole position. Pier Ho Exotic sports a 2:01.2 record in an NYSS division over Buffalo Raceway's double oval on July 9. The undercard will feature three trots in the Excelsior Series Division "A" and three in the Excelsior Series Division "B" Series. Purists will be in their glory on the 13-race card of August 11. With four overnight races joining the nine NYSS trots, the betting card that day will feature 11 races for trotters and only two for pacers. First race post time set at 12:50pm. John Manzi

There were longshots galore in the New York Sire Stakes on Wednesday night at Saratoga Casino and Raceway. Two year old filly trotters were in town and comprised five divisions of the $32,700 Sire Stakes for freshman highsteppers. There was only one favorite who prevailed among stakes fillies on Wednesday as Pig Hunt (Conway Hall) scored a convincing win for driver George Brennan in 2:01.1 at odds of 1-5. The fastest winner of the night for the freshman fillies was Miss B’ville J (Rc Royalty) who wired the field for Jim Morrill Jr in 1:59.2. It was the second victory on the season and easily a new lifetime mark for the Tracy Brainard-trained filly. Miss B’ville J went off at odds of 5-1. Three longshots won the remaining three stakes races as Concentration (Conway Hall) upset for driver Chris Lems at 16-1, Counsellor As (Conway Hall) prevailed for reinsman Marcus Johansson at 17-1 and Dancewithme Chuck (Lucky Chucky) scored at odds of 19-1 with Charlie Norris in the sulky. The New York Sire Stakes return to Saratoga on Saturday August 16th, the same night that the Joe Gerrity Jr. Memorial Free-For-All Pace will take place. Live racing continues on Thursday night at Saratoga with a first post time set for 7:05pm.   Mike Sardella

Three separate divisions of the New York Sire Stakes produced plenty of fireworks at Vernon Downs on Saturday night. The biggest performance was a new track record for 2-year-old trotters of 1:54 for Crazy Wow in the third and final division with a purse of $36,566. Crazy Wow (Crazed-No Pan No Gain) went right to the front at the outset and cruised through fractions of 27.2 for a quarter and 58.1 for the half. Crazy Wow (Dan Rawlings) was actually headed by Eskimo Joe (Ray Schnittker) as the field approached the final turn, but quickly dispatched that challenge to retake the lead through three-quarters in 1:25.3. Crazy Wow stormed home to win by nine impressive lengths in that track record final time of 1:54. Drinksforthehouse (Chris Lems) finished second after Pier Ho Exotic (John Cummings Jr.) broke stride in the stretch. Eskimo Joe had to settle for the third spot. Crazy Wow is owned by Joseph Hess of New Milford, New Jersey and trained by Dan O'Mara. The 1:54 final time eclipses the previous mark of 1:54.3 by Nuncio, set in 2013. Nuncio very nearly made his own headlines on Saturday since he ended up as the runner-up in the 2014 Hambletonian Final at The Meadowlands.   The $37,266 first division was a story of survival for Insomniac (Crazed-Catch Some Zs). Insomniac (Mark Macdonald) took the lead immediately from the outside post position and led through a quarter of 28.4, a half of 59.1, and three-quarters in 1:29. The less than even-money favorite, Mambo Blue Chip (Jeff Gregory), attacked the longtime leader in the stretch, but could never get by Insomniac, who had plenty left in the tank after those conservative early fractions. Commentary (Mike Simons) rolled up strongly in the final strides to finish third at 32-1. Insomniac is owned by Paul Kelley of Gansevoort, New York and William Weaver III of Freehold, New Jersey. Paul Kelley is also the trainer.   Wings of Royalty (Rc Royalty-Sparkling Cider) was the winner of the $37,266 second division. Wings Of Royalty (Chris Lems) made a strong close through the stretch while three-wide to pass the pacesetting pair of Gabe The Bear Dean (Ray Schnittker) and Credit Creation (Jim Morrill Jr.) for a victory in 1:56. Credit Creation had taken the lead from the start and led most of the way around the racetrack, only being passed by Gabe The Bear Dean for just a quick moment before reassuming the advantage. His early fractions of 28.1 for the quarter, 58.3 for the half, and 1:27.4 for three-quarters were solid enough. Gabe The Bear Dean did get past Credit Creation for the second placing in the stretch, forcing Credit Creation to settle for third. Wings Of Royalty is owned by Raymond W.J. Campbell of Belchertown, Massachusetts and trained by George Ducharme.   Live racing will return to Vernon Downs with a 14-race program on Thursday night when the 2-year-old pacing fillies take their turn at center stage in the New York Sire Stakes. Post time for the Thursday program is 6:45pm.   Sophie Norton wins HHYF race on Hambletonian Day Sophie Norton of New Hartford, NY won the Harness Horse Youth Foundation race Saturday at Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, NJ. One kid was selected from Vernon Downs, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, and Harrington Raceway to represent each track on Saturday. Hall of Fame driver Ron Pierce was the co-pilot in the two seat jog cart with Sophie Norton. It was second consecutive year that the representative from Vernon Downs won the HHYF race at The Meadowlands. This year the HHYF was at Vernon Downs July 14-18. The five day camp gave youngsters hands on experience with horses, opportunity to work with local horsemen at Vernon, and the thrill of a lifetime competing in an actual race. Harness Horse Association of Central New York sponsors each kid that participates in the camp. For more information about HHYF and having your kid participate in the 2015 camp visit www.hhyf.org by Michael Chamberlain, Vernon Downs Publicity

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- It was closing day at Buffalo Raceway Sunday afternoon (July 20) and the 2-year-old filly trotters in the New York Sire Stakes tried but couldn't beat their divisional track record of 2:00.2 held by Munis Blue Chip from 2009.   So while the standard still stands tall, there were some good efforts with the fastest times of the four $27,251 divisions going to Betcha and Barn Doll who covered the mile over the fast track in 2:01.2. The other winners were Cherry Crown Jewel (2:02.2) and Miss B'Ville J (2:02.0).   In the opening division, Cherry Crown Jewel inherited the lead after Counselor AS (Jeff Gregory) broke stride around the second turn and was never threatened the rest of the way.   "I really didn't want Jeff's horse (Counselor AS) to get the lead but when they broke, we got back on top and it was nice and easy then," winning driver/trainer Dan Daley said. "She's a nice filly and could do well in the Sire Stakes."   Cherry Crown Jewel ($11.40) was easily able to hold off the mild rally mounted by second place finisher Dancewithme Chuck (Charlie Norris), who finished 1-1/2 lengths back, while Stories To Tell (Chris Lems) trotted into third.   The winning time was 2:02.2 and it was the first win in three starts for Cherry Crown Jewel (RC Royalty-Nowerland Kristen).   Daley made it two straight in the Sire Stakes when he guided Betcha ($4.40) to an convincing 3/4 length triumph over Stirling Debutant (Rick Zeron) in 2:01.2 in the second leg. It was the second straight Sire Stakes win for Betcha.   It was a perfectly rated journey for Betcha (Cash Hall-Sienna) as she followed the live cover of Stirling Debutant and exploded three-wide through the stretch to score the victory by 3/4 expanding lengths in 2:01.2.   Daley said of Betcha, "We didn't think she'd be anything special but she keeps chugging along and wants to be a race horse."   Barn Doll (Gregory) was much the best in the third division as smartly trotted past Kaliska (Ray Schnittker) under little urging and posted the two length decision in 2:01.2. Zanna Blu (Gates Brunet) rolled into the show position.   "She's a very well-mannered filly," Gregory said of Barn Doll. "She's done everything they've asked of her. They (owners Purple Haze Stables and Steven and Nancy Pratt) are going to make a lot of money with her."   It was the third victory in four career starts for Barn Doll (Conway Hall-Headintheclouds) and increased her seasonal earnings to $36,357.   The final division saw Miss B'Ville J (Jim Morrill Jr.) use the 'lightning lane' and beat the front-stepping Northern Obession (Schnittker) by a neck in 2:02.   Northern Obession set the tempo with times of 30.3, 1:01.4 and 1:32.2 but had Miss B'Ville J ($4.70) breathing down her neck the entire mile. In the lane, Morrill Jr. dropped Miss B'Ville inside and she responded to post the neck victory.   Owned by KJ Stables and trained by Tracy Brainard, it was the first trip to the winner's circle in three tries for Miss B'Ville J (RC Royalty-South Jersey Angel).   In the $12,600 Excelsior Class A races, Define Royalty (Chris Lems) took the first division in 2:04 and returned $4.20. Barn Girl (Greogry) won the second leg in 2:02.1 and paid $4.60 while in the last leg, The Cuse pulled the surprise ($13.20) as John Stark Jr. sent the winner wire-to-wire in 2:03.2.   The $6,700 Excelsior B series race was won by Untangled Cash (Gregory) and took the victory in 2:05.1 and paid $4.10.   The live racing schedule is now completed for the 2014 season. Simulcasting will continue throughout the remainder of the year at Buffalo Raceway with live racing expected resume in January of 2015.   For simulcast schedule, race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

Of four New York Sire Stakes events held at Tioga Downs on Friday (July 18) evening, two-year-old sons of top trotting sire RC Royalty proved victorious in three of them.   The first division, carded as the $28,250 third race, saw Royal Lad (RC Royalty-Hostesswithmostess) kick cover off the far turn, rallying for a half-length win in 1:59.4 over Drinksforthehouse and Crazy Levi. Mike Simons drove Royal Lad in the 11-1 upset win for trainer Roman Lopez.   In the following race, Royal Deceptor (RC Royalty-Art of Deception) made an aggressive brush to the lead with a circuit to go, widening his lead through the final three-eighths of the mile en route to a 7-3/4 length win over a late rallying Elusive Action and the first-over Commentary. Royal Deceptor, an easy winner at Buffalo in his career debut, returned a scant $2.70 to win with his effortless 1:58.2 performance. Michael McGivern handled the driving duties for trainer Cheryl McGivern.   The sixth race, devoid of RC Royalty progeny, was the next Sire Stakes event on the evening, with Mambo Blue Chip (Lucky Chucky-Flirty Two) prevailing after a slingshot move on the far turn propelled him to the lead off the far turn. He held on for a narrow 1:57.2 victory, digging in to just stave off 3-2 favorite Habitat, who was mounting a massive late rally after an early break. Jeff Gregory drove the 9-1 Mambo Blue Chip for trainer Linda Toscano.   George Ducharme trainee Wings of Royalty (RC Royalty-Sparkling Cider) wrapped up the New York Sire Stakes portion of the program in the seventh race, edging clear for a three-length win in rein to Chris Lems. He held clear of Credit Creation and Azucar in a 1:57.4 mile, prevailing as the lukewarm 5-2 favorite.   Racing resumes at Tioga Downs on Saturday (July 19) evening, with a 13-race card set to kick off at 6:15 p.m. EDT.   by James Witherite, for Tioga Downs

At this point many two-year-olds have a couple of starts in them, so it’s time to marry personal observations with wild speculation and project which ones will be stepping up to win the Cup, Jug and Hambletonion next year. This is by no means a definitive list of the best of the best; as a matter of fact I’m going out of my way to include some by off-brand stallions. That being said, here are a few early standouts. Artspeak is a Western ideal colt out of the Artsplace mare, The Art Museum. The Western Ideals have fallen on hard times at the sales of late, relatively speaking, but Brittany threw $100,000 at this guy, which matched the top price for any of his paternal brothers in North America. He has won both of his NJSS starts for Scott Zeron and trainer Tony Alagna, in dominant fashion. On Pace Day he came first over to win in 1:52.3 at odds of 3/5 at the Meadowlands. Western Ideal has given us the outstanding performers and game changing sires Rocknroll Hanover and American Ideal, as well as Always A Virgin and Big Jim. His 2013 crop moves on to the slugfest that is the PASS next year. Stacia Hanover, the winner of the $100,000 NJSS final for freshman pacing fillies, is also by Western Ideal. The $35,000 Harness Breeders purchase is trained by veteran Steve Elliott and, like Artspeak, driven by Scott Zeron. She has two other wins in the restricted class, aside from the high-dollar final which she won in 1:53.4 at odds of 3/5. Yankee Bounty is a two-year-old gelding by the enigmatic Artiscape stallion, Yankee Cruiser. His dam is the Allamerican Native mare Yankee Bootleg. This isn’t a combination that screams early speed. Yes, Yankee Cruiser did give is the current king of the pacing ranks, Sweet Lou, who held world records at two and three, as well as the rejuvenated speed demon Dancin Yankee, but for the most part this stallion was up against it in Pennsylvania. Yankee Bounty, a $21,000 Harness Breeders purchase, has won both of his starts in impressive fashion. He won splits of the Pennsylvania All Stars and the Albatross for Corey Callahan and trainer Kevin Lane. Yankee Cruiser stands his first year in Ohio in 2014. Bob Ben And John is one of the wave of impressive colts from the first crop of 2009 two-year-old division champ Sportswriter. Casie Coleman, who trained the son of Artsplace, and has been the leading cheerleader for his initial offering, plucked him from the Lexington sale for a modest $17,000. His dam is the Cambest mare, My Best Girl. This colt made his first pari-mutuel start last week in a $70,000 OSS-Gold leg at Mohawk. He was an easy winner by three in 1:53 at odds of 2/1 for Chris Christoforou. Sportswriter is absolutely killing it in the freshman pacing division of the Ontario Sire Stakes; he’s taking all the air; none of the others are on the same planet. SBSW shook the Pennsylvania program to its foundation with his first crop, but what’s happening with Sportswriter in his restricted program may be more dramatic. Shadow Play impressed us last year with his first crop, but he hasn’t gone on to be a factor in the open realm with his sophomores. We’ll wait and see if Sporty, a key player from the stressed Adios line, makes his presence felt outside of Ontario. Sassa Hanover is a filly from the first crop of Rock N Roll Heaven. Ron Burke bought her at Lexington for $50,000. Sassa’s dam, Sayo Hanover, is half to the very fast Shadyshark Hanover. Jim Morrill drover her to an easy two length win in a NYSS race at Monticello on the July 4. She won in 1:56.3 with plenty to spare. And two of her paternal sisters—She’s Heavenly and Band Of Angels—also won top dollar splits of the sire stakes that day. Heaven was held in high esteem at the sales, and thus far he is fulfilling his promise.   Dragon Eddy is a two-year-old gelding—aren’t they all—by Dragon Again, a stallion known more for throwing rugged long lasting types like Foiled Again, Atochia and Aracache Hanover than he is as a sire of early speed. My Little Dragon won her division at two, but she was an exception. Well, Eddy is something of an outlier himself. He brought $42,000 at Lexington, which is on the pricey side for Dragon Again, who now stands in Ohio. John Buttenschoen trains and Mike Simons drives. At the end of June Eddy won a split of the Pennsylvania All Starts in 1:54.3 at Pocono, and he went on to win a division of the Albatross in an eye opening 1:52.4 at odds of 2/5 at the Meadows on July 8. Mission Brief is a brown Muscle Hill filly who opened a lot of eyes when she took her $100,000 final of the NJSS by 13 lengths in 1:53.3 for Yanick Gingras and Ron Burke. This was an improvement on her previous start, where she only won by ten. Her dam Southwind Serena is by the great trotter Varenne. Mission Brief was a $150,000 Lexington purchase. Look out! The Bank is a Donato Hanover colt out of 2008 three-year-old division winner, Lantern Kronos. He won a split of the Pennsylvania All Stars for Jimmy Takter on July 4th and broke stride while leading on the last turn as the 1/9 favorite in a division of the Hickory Pride at The Meadows this week. Again, Takter drove. Uncle Lasse, a full brother to Shake It Cerry and Solvato, is another very promising Donato colt in the Takter Barn. He also won on July 4. Yesterday he was beaten in a quick 1:56.3 split of the Hickory Pride by the Cantab Hall colt Billy Flynn, driven to perfection by Brett Miller. Possess The Will and Your So Vain notwithstanding, Donato has pretty much been all filly no colt to this point. If this pair is turned over to Gingras or Pierce they could change that in a hurry. Honor And Serve, a Donato colt out of 2008 freshman division winner and world record holder Honorable Daughter, is another who might turn the tide. He just took a split of the Hickory Pride for Dave Palone and Jim Campbell. Royal Deceptor is one of numerous offspring of the New York stallion RC Royalty that sold at the Morrisville sale. The success of last year’s Hambletonion winner, Royalty For Life, inspired many to look favorably upon the eleven-year-old siring son of Credit Winner. Cheryl and Michael McGivern took this brown colt home for $11,000. Royal Deceptor won all three of his qualifiers, then went out and won a split of the NYSS in a track record 1:59.3 at Buffalo Raceway for Michael McGivern. Gatka is a big, rugged filly from the first crop of seven-year-old Hambletonion winner Muscle Massive, whose big brother Muscle Mass met with success in Ontario and has since been relocated to New York. Gatka is a sister to Ake Svanstedt’s Muscle Hill filly Heaven’s Door, who won the $100,000 NJSS sophomore final and finished second behind Shake It Cerry in the Del Miller. She won a division of the PA All Stars at The Meadows in 1:56 at 2/5 and last week she took a split of the Meadow Gladys with ease in 1:57.1 at 1/5.  Billy Flynn, a $120,000 Lexington purchase by Steffan Lind, is by Cantab Hall, arguably the best trotting stallion in North America. Another brown colt—there seems to be a run on them—he is out of the Enjoy Lavec mare Zeta Jones and was bred by Brittany farms. Billy took a split of the PA All Stars by six lengths in 1:57.2 at Pocono earlier this month and he beat the highly regarded Centurion ATM and Uncle Lasse in a division of the Hickory Pride. Brett Miller drives. Wild Honey is proving to be a $35,000 bargain for Jimmy Takter. The daughter of Cantab Hall was a close second to Gatka Hanover in that one’s first start and, like Gatka, won a split of the Meadow Gladys at The Meadows, for Yanick Gingras. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Royal Deceptor set sail from the rail and kept right on going into the Buffalo Raceway record book Wednesday evening (July 9) with a stunning 1:59.3 time over the fast track to highlight the action in the New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters.   The time absolutely shattered the previous mark of 2:01.2 set by Timothy Patrick in 2012 and tied by The Lindy Treaty in 2013. It was the sixth track record either broken or tied at Buffalo Raceway during the 2014 season.   Others registering wins in the $27,250 divisions of the Sire Stakes were Stoneham, Gabe The Bear Dean and Pier Ho Exotic.   But the star of night was Royal Deceptor (RC Royalty-Art Of Deception), an $11,000 purchase at the Morrisville Sale.   Winning driver Michael McGivern said of the gate-to-wire victory by Royal Deceptor ($7.10), "I was holding my breath going into that first turn because we were going so fast. After that, he really settled down and I never pulled the plugs."   Majority owner Chip Foster said, "That race was beyond our wildest dreams. I was thinking we might have a chance for a track record, maybe going 2:01 but 1:59.3. Wow. The last quarter was 28.4. I think we are going to have a target on our back now, but it's a good target to have." Mike Sentiwany Jr. and MJ James also have a share in Royal Deceptor, who set the record in his first pari-mutuel start.   Insomniac (Jason Bartlett) finished in second, 3-1/4 lengths behind while Wings Of Royalty (Chris Lems) took the show spot.   The first division was a survival of the fittest. Stoneham (Riina Rekila) was a beneficiary of a breaking pace-setting Eskimo Joe in the stretch and managed to score the $17.80 victory in 2:04.4.   A total of four trotters went off stride as the gate swung open, leaving Stoneham, Curly's Son and Eskimo Joe (Ray Schnittker) as the trio alive for the win. Eskimo Joe set the fractions of 31.2, 1:03 and 1:34.2 and looked home free in the stretch but jumped it off and finished in third. The unfortunate miscue allowed Stoneham (Lucky Chucky-Toss Up) to cruise on by for the victory while Curly's Son (Dan Daley) took second place.   Stoneham is owned by Overseas Farms LTD and is trained by Rekila.   The third division saw former Buffalo Raceway regular Ray Schnittker zoom wire-to-wire with Gabe The Bear Dean ($6.00).   Setting the fractions of 31.4, 1:03.1 and 1:33.4, Gabe The Bear Dean had no trouble in trotting away from the field of seven in 2:03.3, easily beating Tango Pirate (Truman Gale) by 8-3/4 lengths while Crazy Levi (Jeff Gregory) was third.   Gabe The Bear Dean (Lucky Chucky-Madam Hooch) is owned by Schnittker and the Minix Stables.   John Cummings Jr. also returned to Buffalo Raceway and used a first over brush with Pier Ho Exotic ($17.80) and claim the final leg in a solid 2:01.3, the second fastest time of the night in the Sire Stakes.   Pier Ho Exotic (Conway Hall-Rose Run Exotic) took the lead past the three-quarter marker and cruised past a stubborn Redneck Royalty (Howard Okusko Jr.) and won by a length. Luck Of Macrea (Ray Fisher Jr.) took the show position.   Megan Wilson trains Pier Ho Exotic for owner Cummings Jr.   In the Excelsior Class A races, both worth $12,500, Guilty Man ($11.40) took the first division in 2:03 for driver Dan Daley and Progession ($13.80) went the mile in 2:05.4 for Tyler Raymer in the second leg,   The $6,500 non-betting Excelsior B race went to Global Revolution in 2:05.1 for Daley.   The weekly $10,500 Open Pace for Fillies and Mares saw Ugly Betty (Bartlett) use a strong stretch drive and collar the front-stepping Case Solved (Jim Morrill Jr.) by a half length in 1:54.4. CS Kentucky (Kevin Cummings) finished in third.   Owned by Margaret Payne and Jennifer Falcone, the Dennis Dylo-trained Ugly Betty has now won seven times in 21 starts in 2014 and has earned $48,423.   Racing will continue on Friday night with 13 races on tap. Post time will be 6:40 p.m.   For more information including race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- There's another bull's eye on a Buffalo Raceway track record on Wednesday night when the New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters take dead aim at the 2:01.2 mark set by Timothy Patrick (2012) and The Lindy Treaty (2013).   With this classification's time either broke or tied the past two seasons, a new mark could easily be established. There's been a total of five standards either tied or broken at Buffalo Raceway this season. There's total of 30 talented freshmen trotters that are entered in the the four $27,250 division, all ready to take their best shot. For most, this will be their first 'real' start.   Lucky Chucky has sired eight of the entrants while Conway Hall is next with seven, RC Royalty six, Crazed five, Credit Winner three and Cash Hall one.   The first division will go off as the second race with Royal Conway (RC Royalty-Miss Conway) scoring from the two post as the 5-2 favorite with Gates Brunet in the sulky. Royal Conway registered a 1:58.2 qualifier at Vernon Downs on June 27.   The main threat could come from Lucky Ten K (Lucky Chucky-Promising Deal) who gets the services of Chris Lems out of the six spot. Lucky Ten K has a 2:00 and a 2:00.3 qualifier under his belt at Vernon and is the 3-1 second choice.   In the second division, set as the third race, Azucar (Crazed-Lindy Loves Candy) has a pari-mutual win already after scoring a two-length victory at Vernon Downs in 1:58.1. He'll start from the six post for Brunet and open at 3-1 odds.   The morning line favorite, however, is Wings Of Royalty (RC Royalty-Sparkling Cider) at 5-2. He gets the seven post for Lems. Wings Of Royalty opened with a 2:02.2 qualifier then sprung a 1:59.1 time over the Vernon Downs surface.   It could be a battle from the inside posts in the third leg, scheduled as the fifth race. Drinksforthehouse (Conway Hall-Pacific Photo) gets the garden spot and Lems. He enters as the 5-2 morning line choice thanks to a 1:58.4 qualifier at Vernon Downs.   He'll be challenged from the inside by Four Buck Chuck (Lucky Chucky-Bama Hall) who has Doug McNair in the bike. Four Buck Chuck has a 2:03.4 clocking in a qualifier over the 7/8-mile Mohawk Raceway Track. He's listed at 3-1.   Habitat (Conway Hall-Habit's Best) has been sensational over the Gaitway Farm's mile track, producing times of 1:58.1 and 1:59.4, winning his two qualifiers by a combined 33 lengths. He'll have Jim Morrill Jr. at the controls and is the 5-2 morning line selection.   Mambo Blue Chip (Lucky Chucky-Flirty Two) arrives from the Meadowlands with miles of 2:01 and 2:03. He'll begin out of the four post at 3-1 for Jeff Gregory.   While Morrill Jr. is listed on just one favorite in the four Sires Stakes races, be very aware of him. He's been in 40 races thus far in the Sire Stakes with 15 victories. He's been in the money another 14 times and has earned $463,493, far and away the best among all drivers.   Looking at his Excelsior Series statistics, Morrill Jr. has been in 64 races and has won 18 of them and has been in the money 27 other times.   His seasonal totals at Buffalo Raceway are astounding as well with 66 starts, 25 victories and has been in the money 71 percent of the time with $257,463 in winnings.   There will be a non-betting $6,300 Excelsior Series B races at 4:40 p.m. while a pair of $12,500 Excelsior Series A races will be sprinkled in the regular 12-race card that gets underway at 5 p.m.   For more information, including upcoming promotions, news, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

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