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Today’s Quinte+ race of the day was the Prix de Senlis (purse 45,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 16 starters) at Paris-Vincennes. The 4.4/1 third choice Cidjie de Guez (7f Pomerol de Laumac-Prima du Guez) scored timed in 1.11.9kr for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and Ecurie Vautors. It was her 12th career victory in 45 starts now for 166,780€ earned. The 3.1/1 Caresse (7f Ready Cash-Stefani Hanover) was next for David Thomain and trainer Bjorn Goop. Third was 4.3/1 Celestial Light (8f Love You-Celebrate Light) fir trainer/driver Gerhard Biendl and owner Thomas Kestel. 29/1 Bona Fide (8f Kesaco Phedo) and 13/1 Merles Simone completed the top five. The 2€ exact order Quinte+ payoff was 18,546.20 and the Q+ pool was 3,286,255€. Lightly raced three year olds fillies contested the Prix d’Oloron (purse 38,000€, 200 meters, 11 starters) this day with the 1.16kr timed victory earned by 18/1 Gazelle du Corta (3f Love You-L’Aunou du Fier) with Mathieu Mottier up. The 2.1/1 Goldy Mary (3f Ready Cash-Bloody Mary) was a four length back second for trainer/driver Matthieu Abrivard, and third was 2.1/1 Gloranie des Noes (3f Uniclove) with Thierry Duvaldestin aboard. Yesterday at Krieau (Austria) their featured Prix Jean Pierre Vidal (purse 5,000€, 3100 meters autostart, seven starters) produced a three horse exciting finish timed in 1.1.4kr by the winning 1.6/1 Cashback Pellini (6g Ready Cash-Gulietta Broline) with trainer Gerhard Mayr aboard for Stall Antonshof. The even-money favorite Lord Brodde (8g Mr Pine Chip) took second for trainer/driver Christoph Fischer, and third was 5.1/1 Global Player (12g Ditka Hanover), ahead of 10/1 Sammi Ms (8g Chrome Dei) and 27/1 Vrai Lord (10m Meaulnes du Corta). Also on Sunday was trotting action on the mixed card at Madinina Martinique where the Prix des Tulips (purse 5,000€, 3800 meters distance handicap, six starters) went to Usly de Visais (11g Defi d’Aunou-Pristina Jet). Clocked in 1.20kr on the turf, he was reined by Alexandre Faive for owner/trainer Corinne Gleize, and increased his career earnings to 154,150€, Ussein Royal (11g Ilium Madrik) was second for driver J.F. Gate and Bonheur Toujour (8g Pablo) took third for driver Manuel Dupelin. The Prix des Begonias (purse 5,000€, 3800 meters distance handicap) went to Boycott (8g Goetmals Wood-Mine d’Or) that battled back along the inside to win for owner/trainer/driver Christine Lebreton clocked in 1.20.1kr. Boycott earned his eighth career victory and now sports life earnings of 49,060€. Avis Contraire (9g Infant du Bossis) was second with owner/trainer Alexandre Faive at the lines. Third was Argan de Vandel (9g Look de Star) that Miguel Dupelin piloted. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Readly Express (7m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream), off at 1.2/1, was a decisive front end winner of today’s Grand Prix de France (Gr. I International, purse 350,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 11 starters) timed in 1.10.3kr and reined by Bjorn Goop. On the lead early, pilot Goop set a quick pace, eased the middle speed and jetted away in the lane for victory, the fourth for Readly Express in eight starts in France, now with life earnings of 2,125,324€. Timo Nurmos trains Readly Express for owner Bro Byggnads AB. Fractions were 1.06kr at the 1500 meters remaining point; 1.10.1kr at the 1000; 1.11.2kr with 500 to go.  The 37/1 longshot Uza Joselyn (8f Love You-Teza Joselyn) sat the pocket and remained there to the line, three lengths back, for Gabriele Gelormini, Rene Aebischer and Ecurie Rhythm and Blues. The 2.3/1 Bold Eagle (8m Ready Cash-Reethi Rah Jet) was away fourth on the pegs before moving first over in the late stages, but under the urging of Franck Nivard he could not threaten the winner and ended third, a long neck behind Uza Josselyn. The 79/1 Dijon (6m Ganymede) was fourth for Romain Derieux and 153/1 Billie de Montfort was fifth for Eric Raffin. The 240/1 Hard Times was a distant sixth. There were many miscue dq’s and all the Bazire trainees were affected – Belina Josselyn, Traders, Valko Jenilat, Davidson du Pont and Looking Superb. The Gr. III Prix Chambord (purse 80,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters) began today’s groupe action. This winner was the 7/10 favorite Dreambreaker (6g Offshore Dream-Brooke Boko) handled by the trainer Jean Michel Bazire for Stall Oberkracher. The 1.11.9kr timed winner now shows six wins in 12 outings in France for 257,168€ in life earnings. The 11/1 Divine Mesloise (6f The Best Madrik) was second with Alexandre Abrivard driving for Pierre Belloche and Ecurie Bois Doufray. Generaal Bianco (6f Ufo Kievitshof was third at 7.8/1 odds with Franck Nivard up for trainer Peter Untersteiner. Braquo (8g Ludo de Castelle-Reuve de Presse) took today’s Quinte+ Prix des Vosges (“Chia”) at Vincennes, where 18 starters contested the 2850 meter event for a purse of 48,000€. Antoine Dabouis teamed the nine time winner in 58 career starts that was timed in 1.15.2kr for trainer Michel Dabouis and owner Tanguy Bernier. The 16/1 Beach Julry (8f Hulk des Champs) was second for breeder/trainer/driver Jean Paul Gauvin. 9/1 Croma du Guibel (7f Infant du Bossis) took third with Franck Nivard up, ahead of 4./1 Bleu Ciel and 3.9/1 Cyriel d’Atom. The Q+ exact order 2€ ticket paid 84,679€ and the Quinte pool reached 6,118,124€ today. Monte performers battled in the Prix de Centaures (Gr. I, purse 200,000€, nine starters) and the 1.11.5kr timed victory went to 3.9/1 Evangelina Blue (5f Speedy Blue-Happy Blue) with jockey Mathieu Mottier aboard. J.Ph. Mary trains and owns this now six time winner in 19 starts for 310,800€ in career earnings. The 4/5 favorite Fado du Chene (4m Singalo-Star du Chene) was second handled by P.Ph. Ploquin for trainer Julien LeMer and owner Claude Guedj. 7.4/1 Feeling Cash (4m Ready Cash-Royale Star) took third with Eric Raffin in the irons. In the Gr. II Prix Jean le Gonidec (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, 12 starters five year olds) was raced in pouring rain and it resulted in a dramatic late winning surge by 21/1 Eclipse Danica (5f Hasting-Odyssee du Ravary) timed in 1.13.9kr and teamed by her trainer Pierre Vercruysse. Comte Paul de Senneville owns this mare. He previously owned Amiral Mauzon that won an Elitloppet. Eclipse Danica was away quickly and obtained the pocket. She was subsequently shuffled far back and emerged between horses off the final find, then sweeping to the far outside for the winning move. The final 500 was quick (1.07.2kr) for the winner (1.12.4kr at the 1500 meters to go mark; 1.13.7kr at the 1000 and 1.15kr with 500 remaining). Eclipse Danica won for the eighth time in 21 career starts for 275,960€ earned. The 5.3/1 Estola (5f Nectar-Nika) was second for Yoann Lebourgeois, trainer Emmanuel Ruault and owner Ecurie Comte Pierre de Montesson. Third was 22/1 Extra Light (5f Village Mystic-Ulotis du Goutier) with David Thomain up. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

December 23, 2018 - Eridan (4m Ready Cash-Topaze d’Atout), off at 13/1 odds, rallied late to win the Gr. I Criterium Continental (purse 240,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 18 starters all harness racing four-year olds, the Quinte+ race of the day) at Paris-Vincennes, and with the victory came an auto-invite to the Prix d’Amerique. David Thomain teamed the Sebastien Guarato trainee that was off at 13/1 odds and is owned by Philippe Dewulf. Eridan now has eight career wins in 25 starts for 562,950€ earned. Race time was a quick 1.10.3kr (mile rate 1:53.11 over the 1.305 miles distance) off fast fractions (1.05.1kr with 1500 to go; 1.09.2kr at the 1000 meters remaining mark and 1.10.3kr at the 500). The 3.4/1 Italy invader Vitruvio (4m Adrian Chip-Tigre OM) was second for trainer/driver Alessandro Gocciadoro and 4.3/1 Earl Simon (4m Prodigious-Tindrana) was third for Franck Ouvrie and trainer Jarmo Niskanen. 89/1 Estola was fourth for Alexandre Abrivard and 101/1 Eros du Chene was fifth with Gabriele Gelormini aboard. 2/1 favorite Erming d’Oliverie was a dq, as was Vamp Kronos. In the last 14 years there have been three Criterium Continental winners that moved on to win the Prix d’Amerique, two of them, Bold Eagle and Offshore Dream, won the big race twice, Next up for the classics is December 30 when the Grand Prix de Bourgogne will be raced and January 20th is the Prix de Cornulier for the monte stars. Thomas H. Hicks    

December 21, 2018 - Gotland (2m Ready Cash-Sanawa) remained unbeaten in five starts winning today’s Gr. II Prix Emmanuel Margouty (purse 120,000€, 2175 meters, eight starters all two-year old colts) at Vincennes clocked in 1.14.9kr and with harness racing driver Eric Raffin up. This 7/10 favorite is owned and trained by Philippe Allaire and was bred by J-P Guay. He now has earnings of 161,100€. 5.8/1 General du Parc (2m Lajacque l’Houlbec-Amazone du Parc) was a gaining second for Alexandre Abrivard and trainer Frederic Pratt. The race winner’s stablemates followed, with third to 4.9/1 Gatsby Perrine (2m Bird Parker-Unabella Perrine) with Anthony Barrier up for trainer Allaire and breeder/owner J-F Mary; and fourth to 8.8/1 Get Happy (2m Bird Parker-Rasta Perrine) that J.Ph. Monclin reined for Allaire and owner Elisabeth Allaire. J-F Mary bred this one as well. Thomas H. Hicks

December 16, 2018 - The sensational Face Time Bourbon (3m Ready Cash-Vita Bourbon-Love You) easily won today’s harness racing Gr. I Criterium des 3Ans at Paris-Vincennes (purse 240,000€, 2700 meters, 15 starters). Bjorn Goop was the pilot of this Sebastien Guarato trainee that is owned by Scuderia Bivans Srl and was bred by SARL Haras Saint Martin. Race time was 1.14.4kr off relaxed fractions (a quick last 500 after the 500 to go time of 1.15.2kr). Face Time Bourbon now has nine wins in 10 career starts, the last six in a row, now good for 317,150€ earned. The lightly rigged, unchecked colt, off today as the 2/5 favorite, appears to be on route to a superb career with his superb gait and manners. 32/1 Favorite Fligny (3f Rockefeller Center-Africa Fligny) was second driven by Sylvain Deudonne for trainer Gregory Thorel and Ecurie le Pinsonniere. Third was 51/1 Fanina des Racques (3f Ready Cash) with Franck Nivard up, and ahead of 75/1 Fakir du Lorault (3m Vaillant Cash) and 66/1 Fighter Smart (3m Uniclove). The well-regarded Fly With Us and Faithful were dq’s. The undercard’s top race was the Gr. III Prix Jean Dumouch (purse 115,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap, 11 European starters) with victory to the rallying 29/1 Balbir (7g Ganymede-Manzir) that was reined by trainer Mickael Cormy for Ecurie du Vieux Chene. Race time was 1.14kr. The winning Balbir took his second straight victory and the 27th in his career, good now for 605,290 earned. The 48/1 Bolide Jenilou (7g Kesaco Phedo) was second for Anthony Barrier and trainer Gregory Thorel. The 2/1 favorite Carabinieri (7m Wellino Boko) was third for Franck Nivard and fourth was 13/1 Valko Jenilat (9m Kepler) with Eric Raffin up and this one faced a 25 meter handicap. Thomas H. Hicks

November 30, 2018 - Gotland (2m Ready Cash-Sanawa) won tonight’s Gr. III Prix Ourasi, purse 80,000€, 2200 meters for harness racing two year olds at Paris-Vincennes. This 5/10 favorite was reined by Eric Raffin for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire, and he remains undefeated in four starts now for 107,100€ earned. J.P. Guay bred this fine colt. Race time was 1.16.9kr off slow fractions (1.18.9kr with 1000 meters remaining; 1.18.3kr at the 500 to go mark). 9/1 odds Gatsby Perrine (2m Bird Parker-Unabella Perrine) was a rallying just-beaten second for driver Anthony Barrier, trainer Allaire and breeder/owner J.F. Mary. 8.6/1 General du Parc (2m Lajacque d’Houlbec-Smazone du Parc) was a good third with Alexandre Abrivard up for trainer Frederic Prat. Guerrier Royal (2m Very Nice - Marceaux) at 31/1 was fourth and 46/1 Orkar Von Harth (2m Rise and Shine) was fifth, this one driven by legendary Heinz Wewering for trainer Holger Neumann. The Q+ was also at Paris-Vincennes this evening in the Prix Pomona (purse 38,000€, 2850 meters, 16 starters). The victory was earned by the 2/5 favorite Drexel (5g Phlegyas-Liessel) with Matthieu Abrivard up for owner/trainer Jerome Dubreil. The winner was bred by Comte de Belaigue and he now has five career wins for 92,845€n earned. 36/1 Djohn (5g Jag de Bellouet) was second for Franck Ouvrie and third was 8.9/1 Don Salluste (5g Un Amour d’Haufor) for Francois Lagadeuc. 17/1 Darwin Star (5g Look de Star) and 3.9/1 Diamond Charm (5g Prodigious) completed the top five and led to an exact order Q+ payoff of 51,268.60€ for a winning 2€ ticket. Thomas H. Hicks

The opener on the excellent Paris-Vincennes Saturday card was the Prix de Quimper (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters, 11 European starters) and it was a superb strategic race that the 1.1/1 odds favorite Coach Franbleu (6g Prince d’Espace-Olydra) eventually secured as he and driver Yoann Lebourgeois found room to emerge at top of stretch. They prevailed timed in 1.13.9kr to score for owner/trainer Franck Nivard for the tenth career victory for Coach Franbleu, now for 366,520€ earned. 55/1 Cicero Noa (6g Mandarino Blue-Ma Belle Reine) with Pierre Vercruysse up followed the winner and rallied for second money for breeder/owner/trainer Jan Vanhoucke. The 6.6/1 Cocktail Juliano (6g Pagalor) was third for Matthieu Abrivard held third ahead of 4.3/1 Platon Face handled by Adrian Kolgjini and fifth finishing 8/1 Copernic de Play for driver Franck Blandin. The Gr. II Prix Annick Dreux (purse 130,000€, 2700 meters, nine three year old female starters) saw 1.1/1 favorite Fly With Us (3f Ready Cash-Nariane Marceaux) narrowly prevail for driver Yoann Lebourgeois and trainer Philippe Allaire. The property of Ecurie Normandy Spirit recorded her ninth career victory in 16 starts now for 344,700€ earned. Race time was 1.15.5kr off a pedestrian pace. 3.2/1 Fashion Que en (3f Ready Cash-Usenza) was a short nose beaten second with Eric Raffin up for trainer Allaire and owner J.M. Tessier. Third was 16/1 Folelli (3f Timoko-Andra d’Ecajuel) Fend la Bise and driver Franck Anne was fourth ahead of Fable du Plessis with P.Ph. Ploquin aboard. Today’s Q+ was the Prix de Bagnoles de l’Orne (purse 82,000€, 2700 meters, 18 starters) that was taken by 2.4/1 odds Vertige de Chenu (9g Lynx deBellouet-Negede Chenu) with Eriuc Raffin driving for owner/trainer J-M Baudouin. This one recorded his 17th career win in 124 starts for 403,380€ earned. The 11/1 Aldu d’Argentra (8m Qualimo de Vandel) was second in this 1.13.3kr timed contest for Adrien Lamy and third went to 6.1/1 Ange de Lune (8g Laetenter Diem) with matthieu Abrivard up. 105/1 Best du Hauty and 9/1 Auch completed the top five. The exact order 2€ quinte+ ticket paid 31,571.60€. The Gr. II Prix Jacques de Vauloge (purse 120,000€, 2700 meters, 13 starters) went to the 5/2 odds Feliciano (3m Ready Cash-Ravenella) timed in 1.15.2kr and reined by Eric Raffin for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Ecurie des Charmes. He scored for the fifth time in 16 career starts now for 207,390€ earned. The 1/1 odds Feeling Cash (3m Ready Cash-Royale Star) was second for trainer Allaire, driver Yoann Lebourgeois and owner Carlos Lerner. Ecurie des Charmes bred this one. 17/1 Falcao de Laurma (3m Uniclove-Rangoon) took third for driver Anthony Barrier and trainer Thierry Duvaldestin. The 3/2 favorite Fabulous Wood was a dq. The Prix de Chenonceaux (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, 13 European starters) clolsed out the top class events on the Saturday card. 7.3/1 Mondyouvalue WF (5g Hovding Lavic-Mind Your Manners) scored impressively on the front end for Yoann Lebourgeois, trainer Robert Bergh and owner Christer Englund. The winner increased his career earnings to 392,733€ with this 1.12.6kr timed victory. 20/1 Urtsa Caf (5f Explot Caf-Crisman) was second for drover Matthieu Abrivard, and third was 20/1 Doberman (5m Prodigious) for trainer/driver Frabck Nivard. 5.8/1 Direct Way was placed fourth and Elite du Ruel was placed fifth following the inquity dq of the 2/5 favorite and fourth to the line Dorgos de Guez. On Friday evening the Paris-Vincennes feature was the Prix Arietis (Quinte+ event, purse 55,000€, 2850 meters) and 8/1 Destin Carisaie (5g Uniclove-Quiss Me Carisaie) scored timed in 1.12.8kr for driver Eric Raffin and owner/trainer/breeder Jacques Etienne Thuet. The winner recorded his ninth career victory now for 175,900€ earned. 11/1 Dimo d’Occagnes (5g Timoko) was second for Franck Ouvrie and third was 78/1 Defi Calendes (5g Sam Bourbon) with J.Ph. Monclin up. The 3.2/1 Duel du Gers and 9/1 Dreana Guy) completed the top five and the Q+ exact order ticket paid 110,246.80€ for a 2€ wager. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Great Monday action at Paris-Vincennes included groupe action for top level younger trotteurs. It all started with the monte Prix Louis Tillaye (Gr. II, purse 120,000€, 2700 meters, nine starters). Even-money favorite Feeling Cash (3m Ready Cash-Royale Star) scored easily timed in 1.14.5kr with Yoann Lebourgeois in the irons for owner Carlos Lerner and trainer Philippe Allaire. Ecurie des Charmes bred this winner that defeated 27/1 Fiore de Janeiro (3f Vanishing Point) with Anthony Barrier up for owner/trainer Franck Blandin. 1.9/1 Ferreteria (3f Goetmals Wood-Avenue Victoria) was third for Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Yves Boireau and owner Jean Pierre Dubois. 5.4/1 Full Of Charm (3m Texas Charm) was fourth for Eric Raffin and trainer/owner Julien Dubois. The Gr. III Prix du Langueduc (purse 95,000€, 2850 meters, 13 starters) saw 14/1 Cavalleria (6f Prodigious-Janga) score for trainer/driver Nicolas Ensch timed in 1.13.2kr. Ecurie Castagniccia owns the winner that now has 14 career wins in 51 starts for 570,820€ earned. 3/5 favorite Ble du Gers (7g Quinoa du Gers) was second for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and 4.1/1 Carabinieri (7m Wellino Boko) landed third for Franck Nivard, ahead of Bolide Jenilou and Sharon Gar. The Gr. II Prix Abel Bassigny (purse 120,000€, 2175 meters, 11 starters) saw the 3/10 favored Face Time Bourbon (3m Ready Cash-Vita Bourbon) score impressively in 1.13.5kr with Bjorn Goop aboard for trainer Sebastien Guarato and Scuderia Bivans SRL. SARL Haras Saint Martin bred this now eight-time winner in nine career starts, for 219,150€ earned. 12/1 Feliciano (3m Ready Cash-Ravenella) took second for Eric Raffin, trainer Philippe Allaire and Ecurie des Charmes. Fric du Chene (3m Nobody du Chene) took third for Gabriele Gelormini and Faithful (3, Village Mystic) was fourth for Alexandre Abrivard, The Prix du Corta (Gr. II, purse 120,000€, 2175 meters, 10 starters) saw 3/1 odds Fly With Us (3f Ready Cash-Nariane Marceaux) score timed in 1.12.9kr with Yoann Lebourgeois driving for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Ecurie Normandy Spirit. The Olivier Henri Thomas bred filly recorded her eighth career win in 15 starts for 286,200€ earned. 13/1 Fanina des Racques (3f Ready Cash-Nina des Racques) was second for Franck Nivard and owner/trainer Alexandre Buisson. The 3.6/1 Fend la Bise (3f Prince Gede) finished third for trainer/driver Franck Anne and breeder/owner Ecurie AB Trot, ahead of the 3/2 favorite Fashion Queen (3f Ready Cash-Usenze) that Ericne Raffin teamed for trainer Allaire and owner J.M. Tessier. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

The 5.1/1 odds Philippe Allaire owned and trained Traders (6m Ready Cash-Graziella) took today’s featured Gr. III Prix des Cevennes (purse 110,000€, 2850 meters) at Vincennes, France with a front-end journey timed in 1.12.6kr off rated fractions. The victory was Trader’s 15th in his career that numbers 40 starts and now shows earnings of 1,121,410€. He will likely prep for a repeat try in the Prix de Cornulier, a classic monte test that he won in January. The 1.6/1 favorite Carat Williams (6m Prodigious-Miss Williams) was a rallying second for David Thomain and trainer Sebastien Guarato. 9/1 Cash Gamble (7m Ready Cash-No Way Back) was third with Franck Nivard up for Stall TJ Gamble. The 22/1 Onzi des Liards was fourth for Romain Derieux and 5.2/1 Uza Josselyn completed the top five, with Alexandre Abrivard up. The Quinte+ exact order ticket paid 458.63€ for a 2€ play. Traders is developing into one of the most versatile and talented aged trotteurs in France, a likely player in the Vincennes classic Winter meet events. The excellent Paris-Vincennes card also included the Prix de Soulac (purse 70,000€, 2700 meters, 18 starters) and its 1.14.1kr timed victory was secured by 4.3/1 odds Abydos du Vivier (8g Diamant Gede-Osmie du Vivier) driven by J-M Bazire. Jean Yves Lucuyer bred this winner now of 13 in a career spanning 57 starts for 331,110€ earned. 3/2 favorite Be Bop Haufor (7g Notre Haufor) was second for breeder/owner/trainer/driver Christian Bigeon. 14/1 Atino de l’Ormerie was third for Franck Nivard. Even-money favorite Full Of Charm (3m Texas Charm-Ushuaia Wood) took the Prix de Bellerive (purse 70,000€, 2700 meters, three year old males, monte) timed in 1.15.7kr and with Eric Raffin in the irons. Julien Dubois owns and trains this winner that Ecurie D bred. 6.6/1 Fix It (3g Prince d’Espace) was a distant second and third went to 2.6/1 Fidji Grace. The Prix du Dorat (purse 85,000€, 2700 meters) went to 1.14kr timed and 14/1 odds Coach Franbleu (6g Prince d’Espace-Ulydna) with Yoann Lebourgeois driving for owner/trainer Franck Leblanc. 2.3/1 favorite Ce Bello Romain (6g Jam Pridem) held second for driver Anthony Barrier and owner/trainer S.G. Dupont. Third was the second wagering choice 2.4/1 Cyniel d’Atom (6g Otello Pierji) handled by Eric Raffin for breeder/owner/trainer Aime De Graeve. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink      

Today, over the 1000-meter track at Firenze, saw two-year-old fillies and colts contest the Premio GP Anact 2018, with both divisions raced for a purse of 110,000€ over 1600 meters autostart. The filly division went to the 1.15.9kr timed Ariala Cash SM (2f Ready Cash-Carol SM-Armbro Goal) driven by Roberto Andreghetti. She was a decisive and powerful winner over Antella CLA (2f Daguet Rapide-Nada mas-Ganymede) handled by Fr. Facci, with third to Artemide de Zack (2f Rotary OK-Lucille Grif-Varenne) The colt contest produced a 1.15.3kr timed victory for Amancio (2m Love You-Mania-Lemon Dra) with Antonio Greppi at the lines. He bested Aurt Mede SM (2m Ganymede-Ioss Court SM-Toss Out) with G.P. Maisto up and third finishing Alchemist Bi (2m Manofmanymissions-Fidji Bi-Lemon Dra) reined by Roberto Andreghetti. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Bold Eagle (7m Ready Cash-Reethi Rah Jet) returned to action today at Feurs in the Grand Prix du Centre-Est (Gr. III International, purse 100,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap) and he overcame a 25 meter handicap to score by a length timed in 1.13.3kr. Franck Nivard piloted the Sebastien Guarato trainee for owner Pierre Pilarski. The victory was Bold Eagle’s 42nd in a stellar career that has spanned 55 outings and his career earnings have now reached 4,311,620€. Jean Etienne Dubois bred Bold Eagle. The 1/5 odds favorite pleased the large and enthusiastic crowd as he defeated 6.7/1 Cavalleria (6f Prodigious-Janga) handled by trainer Nicolas Ensch and 56/1 Baronne de Bapre was third. The Feurs undercard included the Prix Timoko (purse 23,000€, 2850 meters, three year olds – the Open des Regions) and that saw 10/1 Fee de Janeiro (3f Tag Wood-Triskele Janeiro) score for trainer/driver Nicolas Ensch and Ecurie de Tremont, timed in 1.18.1kr. 1.9/1 favorite Fakir de Puch (3g Ganymede) was next for owner/trainer/driver Franck Anne and 52/1 Fraise Blanche (3f Tucson) was third for driver Laurent Lamaziere. The Prix Ready Cash (purse 21,000€, 2050 meters autostart, Open des Regions four year olds) brought 3.4/1 Exaltation Citron (4f Niky-Bara de Pintignies) to victory for Franck Nivard, trainer David Haon and Ecurie HD Trot. J-P Barjon bred this winning mare. Race time was 1.12.2kr. 2.7/1 Etincelle du Parc (4f Redlight Jet) got the second check for owner/trainer/driver Franck Anne, with third to 24/1 Epona de Chenu (4f Vanishing Point) for driver Y-A Briand. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Tonight’s Paris-Vincennes card showcased three Groupe III events and an upper level monte contest. The first of the groupe events was the Gr. III Prix Louis Cauchois (purse 80,000€, 2200 meters, eight two year old starters) with victory timed in 1.15.5kr to 1.3/1 favorite Gotland (2m Ready Cash-Sanawa) with Eric Raffin the pilot for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire. J-P Guay bred the winner that is now unbeaten in three outings for 71,100€ earned. 10/1 Gatsby Perrine (2m Bird Parker-Unabella Perrine) was second for Anthony Barrier, owner J.F. Mary and trainer Allaire. Allaire, as trainer and owner, swept the top three as 5/1 Granon Vedaquais (2m Brillantissime-Sestriere) took third for Yoann Lebourgeois. J-P Guay also bred this colt that was undefeated in three starts before this evening. The monte Prix Ariadne (purse 50,000€, 2850 meters, 11 starters) saw the 1/5 favorite Crossfire (6g Prince de Charme-Katiana) record his ninth straight win, all in 2018, after just one win in two 2017 starts. Yoann Lebourgeois was the jockey this day for trainer Stephanie Lepetit. Crossfire now has 11 career wins in 20 starts for 148,650€ earned.2/1 Charlotte Twin (6f Open Charm) was second for Mlle. Oceane Briand and third was 23/1 Cutty Sark (6g Baccarat du Pont) with Julien Balu in the irons. The Gr. III Prix Pierre Van Tryoen (purse 80,000€, 2850 meters, 12 starters) went to 4.3/1 Dayana Berry (5f Scipion du Goutier-Idec du Corta) with J-M Bazire up, he also the owner/trainer. Michel Aladenise bred the winner that now has six wins in 25 career outings. Race time was 1.14.1kr off rated fractions set by fourth finishing Espella Vedaquais. 8.3/1 Divine Mesloise (5f The Best Madrik) was second for Alexandre Abrivard and third went to the 1.4/1 favorite Eclipse Danica (4f Hasting) that Pierre Vercruysse drove and trains for Cte. Paul de Senneville. The final groupe event was the Gr. III Prix Gisela (purse 70,000€, 2850 meters, 10 starters, three year olds) and the 3/10 favorite Feliciano (3m Ready Cash-Ravanella) scored impressively for Eric Raffin, trainer Philippe Allaire and Ecurie des Charmes. He now has four career victories in 13 outings for 123,350€ earned. Race time was 1.14.6kr off even fractions. 14/1 Faithful (3m Village Mystic-Horsaca) took second in a photo with Alexandre Abrivard up for breeder/owner/trainer Louis Baudron. 27/1 Flambeau Royal (3m Look de Star-Rodea Josselyn) gained the third check for reinsman Gabriele Gelormini.s by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Readly Express (6m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos) took Aby’s featured V75-7 Svenskt Masters (Gr.II National, 500,000SEK to the winner, 2640 meters autostart) timed in 1.11.9kr and reined by Bjorn Goop for trainer Timo Nurmos. This classy trotter now has 23 career wins in 30 starters for 18,283,709SEK earned. Pacesetter Cyber Lane (5g Raja Mirchi-Sybaris Hanover-Cantab Hall) held second for driver Christoffer Eriksson and trainer Johan Untersteiner. Third was Racing Mange (5m Orlando Vici-Kara Kickan-Alf Palema) and trainer/driver Joakim Lovgren. Carabanieri (7m Wellino Boko-Dew Princess-JR Broline) held fourth for trainer/driver Peter Untersteiner after making a bold bid with 500 meters remaining. On the undercard was the Gr. II National for Mares (500,000SEWK to the winner, 2140 meters autostart). Cash Crowe (5f ready Cash-Giant Crowe-Gigant Neo) scored for Christoffer Eriksson and owner/trainer Petri Puro. She recorded victory number 11 in 14 career starts now for 4,444,885SEK earned. Dear Friend (5f Orlando Vici-Juventas Broline-Pine Chip-Warrawee Anika-Balanced Image) was second for Erik Adielsson and trainer Johan Untersteiner. In Toto Sund for Orjan Kihlstrom and Darling Mearas with Stefan Persson up completed the top four finishers. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

YONKERS, N.Y. – The prestige and rich harness racing history of the International Trot can rear its head in many places. For Anders Ström, the race’s lineage materialized before him as he studied the yearling catalog of the recently concluded Arqana Trot Select Yearling Sale. Ström paused on hip no. 47, a colt out of Sirene de Mai, whose great, great, great grand dam, Une de Mai, along with her countless European feats, won the International Trot in 1969 and 1971.  “The race has seen many great winners, and I actually watched the 1969 edition on YouTube recently,” Ström said. “It was when French super mare Une de Mai beat Nevele Pride, as I was in the process of buying a Ready Cash yearling colt in Deauville from the Une de Mai maternal line.” Ström bought the colt for €170,000 and he will have a chance to make history of his own in this year’s renewal of the Yonkers International Trot. His stable, Stall Courant AB, will start Cruzado Dela Noche as a representative of Sweden in the $1 million stakes. “It would be (my) biggest win so far. Only Elitloppet, Prix d’Amérique, Hambletonian and the Swedish 4-year-old Derby can match it, in my book,” Ström said. “But this horse’s character makes it extra special. As he already has qualified as a sire in the Swedish system with high grades, a win here would boost his credentials for that as well. That would be very nice.” Ström bought Cruzado Dela Noche sight unseen out of the 2013 Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $28,000. The Pennsylvania-bred son of Muscle Massive out of the Credit Winner mare Alidade, then known by the name Arusa Hanover, looked the part, but it was something intangible that piqued Ström’s interest.  “I wasn’t at the sale because of business in Australia, but ‘Cruzado’ was one of five lower-priced yearlings that I bought on the back of advice from friends and agents who were at the sale inspecting horses,” Ström explained. “Cruzado was the one that had the extra special attitude which is why I renamed him with a name I had kept for a really good horse. The name comes from the Spiderman movie, when Peter Parker comes up with the idea for his suit.” Despite his early promise and standout spirit, Cruzado Dela Noche struggled to stay trotting in his 2- and 3-year-old campaigns; he made breaks in stride in 10 of his 28 races and qualifiers. Despite those setbacks, Cruzado Dela Noche finished third in the Peter Haughton Memorial and posted wins in a division of the International Stallion Stakes and a leg of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes as a freshman in Nancy Johansson’s stable. “He was slightly immature and whimsy to begin with, but tremendously talented,” Ström said. “We felt that he would mature over time, so we weren’t especially worried. Nancy and Marcus Johansson took good care of him in the early days which we are thankful for now that the horse is sound and makes a good career as an older trotter.” After a 3-year-old campaign that produced just two wins in 11 starts, Ström sent Cruzado Dela Noche across the Atlantic to trainer Stefan Melander and Courant Managing Director Sabine Kagebrant. The calculated move would allow Cruzado Dela Noche to take advantage of the 4-year-old stakes in Sweden and give him time to develop.  “We stake all our U.S. purchases to the rich 4-year-old program in Europe. It doesn’t cost much and they add a lot of purse money, so it is an easy business decision,” Ström explained. “Stefan Melander also has a great track record when it comes to the older American horse. “Melander’s training regime suits him perfect. He also has an ‘extra groom’ in Sabine Kagebrant, who has great experience with older star trotters, having worked with Stefan Melander, Björn Goop and Jörgen Westholm horses all over Europe,” Ström continued. “When Sabine is out of the office, she spends a lot of time with ‘Noche,’ makes him feel special and that works well for him.” At 4, Cruzado Dela Noche won the Group 1 Grosser Preis Von Deutschland and the Group 2 Norrlands Grand Prix. He also placed third in the Group 1 Sprinter Mästaren Final. At 5, Cruzado Dela Noche captured the Group 1 Copenhagen Cup. “He always does his best, I can think of only one or two races when he failed and there were good excuses,” Ström said. “One was in Elitloppet 2017, when he made a break at the gate in the elimination which otherwise likely would have given him the same trip as Resolve, who eventually was second in the final.  “That was hard to take. I think he could have matched Timoko on the day, he was in such good shape,” he continued. “But overall this horse gives us tremendous joy, just to see his attitude makes me wonder sometimes. He is so much more than just the average good racehorse.” Now a 6-year-old Cruzado Dela Noche has been lightly raced this season. The stallion was sixth in the Group 1 Olympiatravet Final April 28, third in the Copenhagen Cup May 13, scored his lone win this year in the listed Gösta Bergengrens Minneslopp May 30 before finishing fifth in the Group 1 Oslo Grand Prix. His short campaign was by design as Cruzado Dela Noche returned to the United States early to settle into a new chapter of his career. “We got invited in May and then we decided to give the horse the best preparation possible, with proper quarantine so he could get acclimatized to his new-old life in the U.S. Our dream race to target this season is the International Trot so we didn’t want to leave anything to chance,” Ström said.  “European races are run in a different way which isn’t ideal for ‘Cruzado.’ He likes the high, even pace better, which is why we staked him for the fall season in the U.S.A. just in case,” he continued. “Any which way, he raced really good in the spring, so we felt he was going upwards in form all the time.” Cruzado Dela Noche reemerged in a qualifier at Pocono Downs September 12 for trainer Marcus Melander. He led wire-to-wire in 1:55.2. The stallion got another trial under his belt at the same venue September 26, crossing the wire first in 1:54.2. “He has done quarantine, then two light qualifiers at Pocono, which he made look very easy,” Ström said. “He likes his life at Marcus Melander’s farm and he will get another sharper workout, like an ‘eye-opener,’ a few days before the race which I believe will be enough to take him to top form.” Cruzado Dela Noche, who will pair with driver Brian Sears for the first time in the International, will face nine rivals: Arazi Boko (Italy), Ariana G (United States), Dreammoko (Netherlands), Lionel (Norway), Marion Marauder (Canada), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Ringostarr Treb (Italy), Slide So Easy (Denmark), and Up And Quick (France). Although the field is one of the deepest in recent memory, Ström likes his chances. “I think this year’s field is absolutely fantastic, given the challenge with trans-Atlantic transport of international horses. All races in this class are tough. But ‘Noche’ has beaten Twister Bi, last year’s winner, fair and square before, from second-over in a Swedish record time over the same distance as the International Trot, on a slow five-eighths-mile track. That says he can compete with anyone on the day,” Ström said. “Now I hope Brian Sears up first time will give him an extra gear as well. From posts one to five he is a real contender, otherwise a decent chance to show anyway. I respect the competition and I believe the winner will be the horse that is best on the day and has racing luck.” The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is slated for Saturday, October 13 at Yonkers Raceway. The card will also feature a pair of $250,000 invitationals, the Harry Harvey Trot and Dan Rooney Pace. For more information on the event and its participants, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Brandon Valvo, for the SOA of NY

Face Time Bourbon (3m Ready Cash-Vita Bourbon-Love You) won for the sixth time in seven career starts today, scoring in the Gr. III Prix Kurse (80,000€ purse, 2100 meters, eight starters) at Vincennes, France. Bjorn Goop teamed this Sebastien Guarato trainee that is owned by Scuderia Bivans SRL. He comes from the maternal family of the successful broodmare Etta Extra. Face Time Bourbon, off as the 3/10 favorite, now has career earnings of 120,150€ and he was timed in 1.12.6kr in this his second groupe level victory. Scuderia Bivans recently bought three of the top 12 yearlings sold at the ITS Select Sale including the 220,000€ sale topper Brother Wise As (by Father Patrick). The 85/1 outsider Zucchero Roc (3m Filipp Roc-Galantine) took second for Scuderia Sant Eusebo SRL, their trainer Fausto Barelli and reinsman Filippo Rocca. 10/1 Falcao de Laurma (3m Uniclove-Rangoon) was third with Anthony Barrier up, ahead of 5.3/1 Ids Boko (3g From Above-Celestial Boko) and 25/1 City Guide (3m Love You-Crys Dream). by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Napoli Agnano in Italy held Derby and Oaks qualification races on Sunday, each for a 22,000€ purse. The colts battled over 2100 meters autostart with victory going to 1.12kr timed Zidane Grif (3m Ready Cash-Tafleta’ Grif-Varenne) driven by Alessandro Gocciadoro. He scored for the third time in only seven career starts and was an impressive winner. Zarenne FAS (3m Varenne-Miss Muscle FAS-Muscles Yankee) took second for Roberto Vecchione ahead of Zelig Jet (3m Ken Warkentin-Fenice Jet-Park Avenue Joe) with Pietro Gubellini at the lines. The Oaks qualifier was raced over the 1600 meter sprinter distance autostart. Timed in 1.11.9kr was the winning Zoe Grif Italia (3f Ready Cash-One Dream Grif-Varenne) reined by Massimo Barbin. This now five time career winner in 17 appearances, defeated Zia Paola Jet (3f Maharajah-Lince Jet-Supergill) with Fed. Esposito up. Third went to Zona OK (3f Varenne-Errueno OK-Supergill) with trainer/driver Gocciadoro up. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

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