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Vernon, NY - Vernon Downs will implement an innovative new concept of classifying the overnight harness racing horses beginning with next week's draw.   David Siegel, President of Trackmaster known for their horse racing past performance products and handicapping aids, has developed a process where all horses racing on the continent are assigned a figure akin to the speed figures used by horseplayers to handicap races.   The assigned figure is based on a number of factors compiled by software that is dedicated to the process. The races are then comprised of those horses with comparable figures, theoretically creating races based on each horse's ability rather than the amount of money made in the last few starts.   Hoosier Park's Scott Peine has been using the assigned ratings for nearly two months and Ocean Downs implemented the ratings to classify their races when their meet began in early June. Both report positive results with even fields and odds boards for the races.   Hambletonian President John Campbell presented the idea at last December's Racing Secretary meetings and had this to say regarding the possibilities of the initiative;   "I believe the Trackmaster rating system of classifying horses has the potential to be far superior in matching fields of horses together and will offer our horse players more value across the tote board. The initial results at Hoosier Park and Ocean Downs from a wagering standpoint have been very positive."   Vernon Racing Secretary Scott Warren has spent the past few weeks observing and comparing the conventional money classification system with the assigned figure formula to get an idea if it worked for his horse population. He was impressed enough to put it to use.   "One of the more positive results from this manner of classifying will allow for horses to return to a class where they can be competitive more quickly after moving up to a level beyond their ability after a win while the money conditions could keep them over classified for a month or more. As a result the races should be more even and horses should be overmatched and at long odds far less often," was Warren's observation.   Classes will be listed on the condition sheet as AA, A, B, C & D. The ratings figure for horses that have been racing at Vernon will be available in the race office and on the Vernon Downs website.   Trackmaster automatically produces a figure for every horse racing in North America. This change will begin with the weekend of July 13 & 14. Please call the Racing Office at (315) 829-6825 with questions.   by Nick Salvi, for Vernon Downs

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Harness racing's pot of gold has been building for some time now, and the next player to cash in will walk away with more than a quarter-of-a-million dollars. The carryover for the Meadowlands' Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five now stands at $258,907, and the next time bettors can take a swing will be in Friday night's ninth and final race. To rake the pot, one must be the only holder of a ticket bearing the winning combination of the official top five finishers. The jackpot has not been hit in quite some time. The last time the pool was paid out was on July 29, 2017, when there was a mandatory payout. The current pot has been building since September 8th of last year. But that will not be the only mega-carryover up for grabs at the Big M. While the Big M's JSH5 carryover is the harness game's biggest, the carryover for Gulfstream Park's Rainbow Pick-6 is now $637,676, while another thoroughbred track, Belmont Park, had a Pick-6 pot that stood at $235,671 entering Wednesday's races before failing to get hit. There are a pair of harness tracks who also have noteworthy carryovers to shoot for: Pocono Downs' Rainbow Pick-5 ($107,831) and Hawthorne Racecourse's Jackpot High-Five ($81,573). All of the action from Gulfstream, Belmont, Pocono and Hawthorne will be simulcast to the Big M, as well as many other tracks that are up "on the bird". Of course, the Big M's popular 50-Cent Pick-4, which usually has a pool in the $80,000 range, will be available, with its low 15 percent takeout. Free program pages for the Meadowlands Pick-4, courtesy of Track Master, are available on the Meadowlands' website (www.playmeadowlands.com) and on the handicapping section at www.ustrotting.com. SPECTACULAR SATURDAY SIMULCAST: In addition to a live 11-race program that gets underway at 7:15 p.m., the Big M will have Pocono Downs as the featured simulcast harness track on Saturday evening (post time, 7 p.m.). The Pocono program is a true gem as eliminations for stakes events that line the 14-race card will serve as a prelude to some huge Meadowlands races that take place on July 14. The Max Hempt for 3-year-old pacers will serve as the final prep before the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace while the Ben Franklin for free-for-all pacers is a prelude to the William Haughton. The James Lynch for 3-year-old pacing fillies tees up the Big M's Mistletoe Shalee while the Earl Beal for 3-year-old trotters preps horses who are entering the Stanley Dancer, and, of course, the Hambletonian a little further down the road. DON'T WHINE, COME TO THE BIG M: The Meadowlands' Summer Wine Festival takes place Saturday with local wineries from New York and New Jersey participating. They'll be more than 25 total producers - wineries. For complete information, go to www.playmeadowlands.com. Still to come.... JUNE 30: College students can enter to win one of ten $1,000 college scholarships sponsored by Jeff and Paula Gural's Allerage Farm. Those showing a valid college ID will receive a voucher good for a $5 wager as well as a free program. They'll also a be a handicapping contest that night for those 18-30 years of age and the guaranteed prize pool of $5,000 is also being sponsored by the Gurals. JULY 7: It's Fan Appreciation Night, and it's also wiener take all, as the Big M hosts its 1st annual Wiener Dog Races. For those who own a dachshund and want to enter, go to http://playmeadowlands.com/uploadedFiles/wiener_racing_sign-up_sheet.pdf. At the conclusion of the races, stay for a fantastic fireworks display. They'll be beer and food specials all night long. There is a special early post time of 6:35 p.m. The featured event are the eliminations for the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. JULY 14: The Meadowlands' signature event, the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace, takes center stage. Post time is 6:35 p.m. AUGUST 4: Harness racing's signature event, the $1 million Hambletonian, brings the best 3-year-old trotters to not only the Big M, but to a national television audience (on the CBS Sports Network). Post time is noon for harness racing's biggest day. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands    

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Validus Deo let Sgt Molly Pitcher do the heavy lifting in Buffalo Raceway's harness racing featured $8,400 pace on Wednesday night (May 9) but when it counted the most, Validus Deo proved to be the strongest in the end.   Following the pace-setting Sgt Molly Pitcher, Validus Deo (Kevin Cummings) popped the pocket in the lane and took a 3/4-length decision in 1:55.0 over the fast track to pull off the $16.00 surprise.   Sgt Molly Pitcher (Jim Morrill Jr.) had things her own way through fractions of :28.4, :57.4 and 1:27.0. Validus Deo, the lone male in the race, was anxious to make a move around the final turn and couldn't wait any longer.   Tipping to the outside, Validus Deo slowly but surely was able to wear down Sgt Molly Pitcher in the lane to score his fourth win in 13 tries in 2018. Rock My World (John Cummings Jr.) used a pylon-skimming trip to take third.   Co-owned by Cummings, Matthew Rosiek and Robert Johnson, the 8-year-old gelding (Lis Mara-Madam Countess) has now put $17,748 in the bank this season and $523,169 lifetime.   Ray Fisher Jr. completed the evening with a driving triple while Billy Davis Jr. and Cummings doubled.   Racing will return on Saturday night at 6 p.m. with a 13-race scheduled.   For more information including the latest news, simulcast schedule, upcoming promotions, race replays, results and entries, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

DAYTON, OH. - Its been a very exciting week for harness racing driver Travis Seekman, to say the least. His wife Desiree presented the 27-year-old reinsman with their first child, a healthy 8 pound 1 ounce baby girl they've named Raegyn, on Thursday morning; and Saturday night (Nov. 18) he won the $18,500 Open Handicap Pace with Let's Drink On It at Hollywood Dayton Raceway. Despite persistent night-long rainfall and strong gusting winds, the 6-year-old son of Art Official, trained by "Grandpa" Joe Seekman and taken care of by "Grandma" Tina Seekman, overcame the dreaded 9-hole and swept to a convincing 2-1/4 length 1:54.1 score over the sloppy surface. Go Daddy Go (Randy Tharps) and Dreamfair Mesa (Josh Sutton) battled through the first quarter in :28 and the half in :56.3 before Dalhousie Dave (Kyle Ater) ranged up to challenge the leaders at the 1:25.2 three-quarters with Let's Drink On It in tow in the outer flow. It was at that point that "Daddy" Seekman swung his charge three-wide and got the response he hoped for. "That wind was brutal on the last turn and I was out three wide, but Let's Drink On It raced big tonight and went a big mile," beamed Travis. "I'll have enough for my first load of diapers now," he laughed. Prince Bayard (Kayne Kauffman) and Dont Say Goodby (Trace Tetrick) were also near the back of the pack in the early going, but also responded well throughout the second half to garner runnerup and show finishes, respectively. Let's Drink On It has now scored 33 triumphs and pushed his lifetime earnings past $850,000 with the win. Gregg Keidel

Friday night featured the first harness racing installment of the New York Sire Stakes of the year at Saratoga Casino Hotel. The fourteen race card was comprised of solely lady pacers including four divisions of the $44,000+ Sire Stakes for sophomore fillies. Tequila Monday (American Ideal-Margarita Monday-Ponder) began her title defense as the Chris Oakes-trained filly was the two year old Sire Stakes champion last year. With earnings of just shy of $190,000 as a freshman, Tequila Monday came into Friday's stakes try off a career-best victory at Yonkers in which she stopped the timer in 1:52.2. Brian Sears piloted the sensational sophomore on Friday who after moving out to the early lead never looked back before scoring in 1:52.4, the fastest time of the night for all the Sire Stakes races. Roaring To Go (Brett Miller) who was the runner-up to Tequila Monday on the Night of Champions in 2016 came up second best to her once again on Friday despite a strong showing of her own. Daughters of Roll With Joe, Obvious Blue Chip (Scott Zeron) and Playing Favorites (Billy Dobson) each recorded stakes scores on Friday as did Artrageous (Art Major- In Deep Thought-Ponder) who went wire-to-wire with Brett Miller in the sulky. The next installment of the New York Sire Stakes at Saratoga won't take place until July 20th when three year old trotting fillies are featured. Live racing continues on Saturday night at the Spa with a 6:45pm first post. Mike Sardella

TORONTO, January 2 – The Mohawk Race Office would like to offer horsepeople an update on training and live racing at Woodbine Racetrack. The racing surface and paddock at Woodbine will not be available for training this Tuesday (January 3), but instead will be open on Wednesday (January 4) from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Live racing resumes at Woodbine this Saturday (January 7).  The Mohawk Race Office will reopen on Tuesday morning and the draw for Saturday will be held on Wednesday. Entry box closes at 10:30 a.m. by Mark McKelvie, for WEG

The two semi-finals of the Sky Racing Southern Cross for harness racing two-year-old colts & geldings (1800m) has set the stage for a rematch between two exciting pacers Globe Derby Park. Emain Macha (Safari), with his semi-final win, became Australia’s most winning two-year-old taking his number of victories this season to seven, one ahead of a group on six. However, he has tasted defeat once, at the hooves of Deeceeten, which was a brilliant winner of the other semi-final meaning the barrier draw will be of big significance on Tuesday. Backed from $2 into $1.60 favourite, Deeceeten showed in his semi-final that he is not a once dimensional pacer. Nykea Courage ($2.20 to $3.50), a stablemate of Emain Macha, drove through from gate two to hold out the David Jack trained-and-driven Deeceeten which began well from barrier six. At his debut run, Deeceeten had led and run along, but on Saturday night, Jack opted to drop in behind Nykea Courage and take a trail and the big horse settled well. The Jill Neilson-trained Opinionated made a lightning move around the outside to sit outside the leader and driver Dani Hill put the pressure on and went clear coming off the back allowing Jack to bring Deeceeten off the inside and come wide. Glenrae Hanover, trained and driven by Dale Afford, sprinted very quickly past the 300m mark and looked likely to swoop to the lead but Opinionated responded, then Deeceeten wound up and dashed through. On the line, Deeceeten had six metres to spare from Opinionated ($17.40) with Glenrae Hanover ($8.90) four metres away third. Jack was delighted with the further improvement by Deeceeten and very happy the colt had shown he could settle back in a field. Emain Macha was an unbackable $1 money back favourite in the second semi-final of the Sky Racing Southern Cross but didn’t have everything his own way with the Ray Holberton-trained Stars Of Courage proving again he is a racehorse with plenty of ability. Stars Of Courage has shown ability but is still learning about racing and can get fired up which doesn’t help his winning prospects. Emain Macha, trained by Greg Scholefield at Naracoorte and driven by Jock Dunlop, led from gate two but Dani Hill had Stars Of Courage ($13.80) away quickly from barrier four and had a dip for the lead but the favourite was keen to stay in control. Stars Of Courage again raced quite keenly but the pair raced side by side for the rest of the race. With quarters of 30.9 and 31.7 early the race was set for a sprint home and so it proved with 29.3 and 28.0 final quarters and Emain Macha prevailed by 1-1/2 metres but the third horse Aquaflight ($11.80) was 18 metres away third. While Emain Macha will be further improved by the run and will go into the final at peak fitness, Deeceeten and Stars Of Courage showed enough that the final should provide an exciting contest. by Graham Fischer Race programme for Globe Derby Park, Saturday 30 July 2016

The Atlantic Sires Stakes two-year-old pacing colts tackled the oval at Truro Raceway on Thursday evening, as part of Atlantic Grand Circuit Week harness racing action. Colin N Down (Articulator) and Gilles Barrieau captured the first of four $6100 'A' division events in a time of 2:00 for the Downey Stables of Quispamsis, NB. The second 'A' division event went to Mighty Cowboy and driver Darren Crowe in 2:00.1. The Bandon's Cowboy colt is owned by David MacDonald of Halifax, NS. Rinaldo 'Neldie' MacDonald and his two-year-old colt Jigtime Jones (Western Paradise) crossed the finish in 2:00 in their division. MacDonald of Antigonish, NS, shares ownership on the colt with Ian Tate of St. Andrews, NS. The final 'A' division event on the card went to Tobinator (Coastocoast Yankee) and driver Ryan Ellis. The duo came home in an impressive 1:58 for owners Robin Burke, Luke Burke, Perry Burke and Kent Livingstone. Two $2500 'B' division events rounded out the card going to IC A Free Spirit and Matts Tuition. Atlantic Sires Stakes racing action resumes on Saturday evening at Truro Raceway when the three-year-old pacing colts roll into town. First race post time on Saturday is 7 pm. Lynne MacLennan

Summerside, PE - Casimir Luciano rolled out of post five and paced to a harness racing victory Sunday in the feature race at Red Shores Summerside in 1:58.1. Driven by Marc Campbell, Casimir Luciano has been one of the hottest horses on the grounds winning nine of his last 12 starts for owner-trainer Ralph Sweet. Motorino (Terry Gallant) finished second after a pocket ride while Carnivore edged his way through traffic to complete the triactor for catch-driver Dale Spence. The winner returned $5.20. There were no tickets sold on the 5-6-7 combination so the triactor paid out on 5-6-all for $55.20. Rash B Behavior (Campbell) turned in the fastest performance of the afternoon tripping the timer in 1:57.4 for trainer-owner Michael Peters, Emyvale, PE. It was a Murphy driving triple with Ken parading Machinthesand and Sandhill Star to victory lane. His bother Steven scored with Rymar Rodeo in 2:00.3. For complete results go to www.redshores.ca By Lee Drake

Tonight’s Solvalla feature was The Onions worth 80,000SEK to the winner of this 1640 meter autostart contest with ten starters, and, as expected, the 1.1/1 favorite Nuncio (5m Andover Hall-Nicole Isabelle-Lindy Lane) recorded the win for Stefan Melander and his Stall TZ. Nuncio now has two wins in two 2016 starts and a slate of 28-12-2 in 42 career starts good for 18,292,726SEK earned. Timed in 1.10.7kr, same as his prior current year winning time, Nuncio defeated the same timed Food Money (8g Andover Hall-Windylane Hanover-Lindy Lane) for Jennifer Tillman, off at 5.8/1, and third finishing Nothing But Class (7m Andover Hall-Bold Dreamer-Donerail) with trainer Peter Untersteiner up. Smilin Eli was fourth for Erik Adielson and the Reden/Stall Zet team. Russell Williams bred the winner. In undercard action at Solvalla, Moni To Spare (5g Chocolatier-Live Moni-Conway Hall-Moni Maker) took his second 2016 win in as many starts for driver Kenneth Haugstad and owner/trainer Nicklas Johannson. This one now shows a slate of 7-1-0 in nine career outings for earnings of 249,300SEK including today’s 40,000SEK first money for the 1.13.6kr timed verdict over 2140 meters autostart. Moni To Spare was bred in the USA by Moni Market Stable and was unraced as a two and three year-old. Lady Lee takes SebNor Recycling Mares Trot at Bergsaker Today’s Bergsaker SWE feature was the SebNor Recycling Mares Trot for 100,000SEK to the winner over 2140 meters autostart. The 40/1 outsider Lady Lee (7f Ride The Night-Princess Fri-Probe) rallied late for a long neck victory timed in 1.13.5kr. Kirsten Hell piloted the winner for owner Jan Hagg to her 11th career win in 105 starts. 86/1 Rondine d’Asolo (6f Varenne-Valdagna Ons-Park Avenue Joe) was second for Hanna Olofsson after circling the field to gain advantage around the final bend before facing the winner late. Third was 38/1 Elles W.Phedo (10f Kesaco Phedo-Elles W.Lolota-Rapido) for driver Ove Lindqvist. The 1.38/1 favorite Wild Honey (4f Cantab Hall-U Wanna Lindy-SJ’s Photo) was away comfortably along the pegs and remained there until past the 1000 meter mark when driver Orjan Kihlstrom hustled that one to the front. Then the US import began rough gaited in the final bend and went offstride. Early leaders Cantabs Fortune and Ninepoints Lucy faded late with Cantabs Fortune also going offstride for trainer/driver Daniel Reden. Another US import, Bostonz Credit, stayed along the pegs and finished fourth for Ulf Eriksson and trainer Daniel Reden. On the Bergsaker undercard the US import Fighting Bax (4m Muscle Massive-Bax Machine-Earl) scored in 1.14.7kr for Orjan Kihlstrom, Stall Zet and trainer Daniel Reden. Bred by Pete Spears’ Windsong Stable, the winner now has three wins in five 2016 starts. The victory tonight added 60,000SEK to his scorecard. Tommaso America (4m Muscle Hill-Onda Degli Dei-Windsong’s Legacy) was second. The Bergsaker’s finale was theForsakringskonsult for 40,000SEK to the winner of this 2140 meter autostart event. 22/1 Bourne Identity (5m Sugar Trader-Santana-Super Arnie) scored in 1.14.1kr for Martin Akerlund, his eighth career victory in 24 outings. US import Stand Bayou (5m Donato Hanover-Roux Hanover-Mr. Lavec) was second at 2.3/1 for Orjan Kihlstrom and the Daniel Reden/Stall Zet team, timed same as the winner (this one also bred by Spears’ Windsong Stable. Voulez Vous was third for Ove Lindqvist. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink  

Victorian gelding Cant Refuse has managed just one win from 15 starts, but he looks certain to start harness racing favourite after drawing favourably in the $50,000 Slater Gartrell Sports Western Gateway Pace over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will start from barrier three on the front line in the group 3 feature for three-year-olds and has bright prospects of turning the tables on the brilliant Chicago Bull, a stylish winner at each of his past four starts (all at Gloucester Park). Chicago Bull, prepared by champion West Australian trainer Gary Hall sen., will start from the No. 5 barrier with star reinsman Gary Hall jun. in the sulky. Chicago Bull and Cant Refuse, geldings by super sire Bettor’s Delight, clashed for the first time when they met in a 2130m WA Derby Prelude on Thursday of last week when Chicago Bull started from barrier three, took the lead after 500m and went on to win by one metre from Cant Refuse, who revealed abundant gate speed from barrier four and was smartest into stride. However, Cant Refuse was unable to muster sufficient speed to cross the polemarker El Hombre and was left in the breeze when Hall dashed Chicago Bull to the front. Chicago Bull sped over the final quarters in 27.8sec. and 27.6sec. and held on to score narrowly at a 1.54.8 rate. Cant Refuse looked well and truly beaten at the 400m mark, but he impressed when he fought on with great determination. This was Cant Refuse’s first start since he raced without cover and fought on with wonderful tenacity to finish a 2m second to the unbeaten champion Our Waikiki Beach in the 2400m New South Wales Derby at Menangle mon February 28. Hall jun. has not conceded defeat and still considers Chicago Bull, a winner at seven of his 14 starts, a strong winning chance. “Over the 2536m I’ll go back with Chicago Bull and sit him up,” he said. “He goes best driven that way. Last week he kicked clear comfortably on the home bend, but he took his foot off the gas a little bit and I had to wake him up late.” Chicago Bull showed his class as a sit-sprinter the previous week when he raced in last position in a field of six before bursting to the front 600m from home and racing away to win by four lengths from Just Bet On Black. There is certainly no guarantee that Cant Refuse will be able to take full advantage of his gate speed and charge to an early lead. Smart beginners and proven frontrunners Sprinter and The Art Form are drawn on his inside and this could result in a hectic battle for early ascendancy. The Mike Reed-trained The Art Form will start from the No. 2 barrier and the high-priced New Zealand colt began speedily and gave a bold frontrunning display to score an easy three-length win over the talented El Jacko in a 2185m Byford trial last Sunday week. But The Art Form, at his Australian debut, at Gloucester Park on Thursday of last week, drew out wide at barrier six and was restrained to the rear. He was sixth, one-out and two-back at the bell and did not threaten danger in finishing a well-beaten fifth behind Chicago Bull. The polemarker is Sprinter, a richly-talented and versatile Mach Three gelding who has won ten times from only 16 starts for Pinjarra trainer Gary Elson. Sprinter, to be handled by his regular reinsman Nathan Turvey, has led in three of his victories and also has impressed with his powerful finishing bursts. Sprinter has taken no harm from a solid campaign in the Eastern States when he won a heat of the Victoria Derby at Ballarat and finished fourth in a heat of the NSW Derby. He started from barrier six in the Victoria Derby final at Melton and had no luck, covering plenty of extra ground and finishing eighth behind the brilliant Lazarus.           He drew wide at No. 8 in the final of the NSW Derby at Menangle and was a $94 outsider who settled six back on the pegs and was eighth in the one-wide line at the bell before finishing with a late flourish to be a splendid fifth behind Our Waikiki Beach. Wide draws will provide very tough challenges for in-form geldings Vanquished, Johnny Disco, Questionable Gesture and King Lebron. King Lebron, a newcomer to the powerful Hall stable, faces a stern test from the No. 9 barrier at his first outing in Australia. He began out wide at barrier seven at his most recent appearance, in a $40,000 listed event over 1950m at Addington on February 12 and impressed with his close third behind Nek Time. He settled in seventh spot and was sixth on the home turn before finishing with a powerful burst. The final 800m was covered on 54.5sec. and the last 400m whizzed by in 27.6sec. At his previous start he led from barrier one and sprinted over the final quarter in 27.5sec. to win, unextended. Touch of Success is another New Zealand-bred colt who will be having his first start in Australia when he behind form the No. 4 barrier with Stuart McDonald in the sulky for Busselton trainer Matt White. He has won three times and has finished three seconds from his ten starts in New Zealand. Ken Casellas

TORONTO, December 4 - Brinkers Dream and Aniston Seelster won their respective harness racing Autumn Series Finals Friday night at Woodbine Racetrack. The $36,800 three-year-old filly trot and $37,800 three-year-old filly pace Autumn Series Finals highlighted Friday's 11-race card. A pair of scratches, including leg one and two winner The Murmuring Pan, left a field of eight for the filly trot final and Brinkers Dream seized the opportunity at 24/1. Driven by Paul MacDonell, Brinkers Dream trotted out strong to take the lead and post an opening-quarter of :28.2. Tymal Fireitup, a leg two division winner, was sent off as the heavy 1/5 favourite and got away fourth in the early stages. Brinkers Dream got her own way in the second-quarter and took the field by the half in :58. Around the final turn, MacDonell opened up a sizeable lead with Brinkers Dream and the leader stormed the third-quarter in :27.4 to hold a six length lead turning for home over a first over Tymal Fireitup. Brinkers Dream strides shortened in deep stretch, but her big lead was too much for her rivals to overcome, as she scored a 1¾ length victory in 1:56.1. Aspen California rallied from the back to nose out Tymal Fireitup for second. A daughter of Taurus Dream, Brinkers Dream entered the Autumn Series Final off a fifth and a second in the preliminary legs. She is trained by John Bax and owned by Bax Stable and Dave Hudson. The Autumn Series victory is the second win in 23 starts this season for Brinkers Dream. Her career earnings now sit at over $55,000 and the clocking of 1:56.2 knocked a fifth of a second off her previous career-mark. A $2 win ticket on Brinkers Dream returned $51.10. Brinkers Dream Aniston Seelster had to work for the lead early, but that was the spot to be in the $37,800 pacing filly final. Driven by Doug McNair, Aniston Seelster, the 6/5 favourite, sprinted off the wings of the gate with Much Adoo, the second-choice at 2/1, matching each stride to her inside. The two favourites went toe-to-toe for the length of the stretch, before Aniston Seelster edged by to take command at the opening-quarter. Aniston Seelster had to pace a :25.4 first-quarter to get the lead, but that turned out to be the winning move. McNair was able to get middle-fractions of :56.2 and 1:27.2 to set up a final-quarter sprint. In the stretch, Aniston Seelster powered home in :28.3 and was able to hold off Much Adoo from the two-hole and a late surge from Pinky Tuscadero up the rail for a three-quarter length victory in 1:56. Pinky Tuscadero, who was eighth turning for home, charged up the rail to nose out Much Adoo for second. A daughter of Mach Three, Aniston Seelster is trained by Gregg McNair for owners Lindsey and Connie Rankin. The sophomore pacing filly finished first and second in the Autumn Series preliminary legs. Aniston Seelster now has seven wins in 21 starts this season after going winless in five starts as a rookie. The Autumn Series final victory pushes the Rankin's filly over the $100,000 earnings mark to $107,840. The McNair trainee paid $4.50 to win. Aniston Seelster In order to be eligible to the Autumn Series, the Ontario sired three-year-old fillies had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime or $30,000 in 2015 as of September 30, 2015. Mark McKelvie

DOVER, Del. --- The final major three-year-old stakes event of the harness racing season has a new name: the $300,00 Hap Hansen Progress Pace. Since 1996, and for its first 20 years, the Dover Downs signature event has been called the Progress Pace. Upon his passing, a year ago, the race has been renamed, the Hap Hansen Progress Pace to honor one of the sports finest administrators, a Dover Downs and Brandywine Raceway executive, and Harness Tracks of America (HTA) official, Wilmer E. Hap Hansen.. This year's event will again offer the largest-purse race in Delaware harness racing. The $300,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace is the highlight of the track's 47th season and is the spotlight event of its 2015 "Novemberfest of Racing." This year's Hap Hansen Progress Pace features the some of the sport's leading three-year-olds led by the top sophomore pacer and leading candidate for Horse of the Year honors, Delaware-based Wiggle It Jiggleit,a 1:49 winner of last week's elimination. The History of the Progress Pace The Progress Pace was created by Dover Downs' CEO Denis McGlynn in the fashion of a former state of Delaware sports' tradition - The Battle of the Brandywine - formerly the showcase of ill-fated Brandywine Raceway. Last season, Canadian champion McWicked, driven by David Miller, notched the fastest win in event history, scoring in 1:48.4 in the 2014 edition. Over the years, Most of the sports leading drivers, owners and stables have participated in the Progress Pace. Hall of Fame drivers include four-time winner John Campbell and three-times winners Ron Pierce and Luc Ouellette. Bret Pelling has trained three Progress Pace champions. Sampson Street Stable has shared in three Progress Pace champions with Newman Racing, two, the only other with more than one winner. The first Progress Pace was carded in 1996 with a $100,000 final. The winner was Armbro Operative, owned by Tom Walsh, Jr. and Dave McDuffy, driven by Mike Lachance. It was the first of three Progress Pace winners conditioned by Brett Pelling. Pelling also trained the winners of the next two winners of the event Dream Away, owned by Canadian horsemen Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld and Sam Goldband, won the 1997 event. Crown Jewel Stable's Browning Blue Chip took 1998 laurels. Both winners were driven by John Campbell. Luc Ouellette drove Jeff Snyder's Royalflush Hanover to his first Progress Pace win. The gelding overtook Grinfromeartoear on the backstretch and pulled off for the 1999 title. The following season, Ouellette came back to drive 2000 winner-Powerful Toy, owned by Newman Racing Stable, Sampson Street and Dodge A Bullet stables. Ron Pierce made the winner's circle in the 2001 event driving Peruvian Hanover for owners Sidney Korn and Alvin Jacobson. Art Major beat stablemate McArdle to win the 2002 edition. Owned by Deena Frost, Jerry Silva, Sampson Street and TLP stables, Art Major was the third Progress Pace champion driven by John Campbell, In 2003, for the second straight year and third time in Progress Pace history, a colt co-owned by Sampson Street Stable, Radar Sign, won the final. And in 2004, for the second time in four years, another colt co-owned by Sampson Street and Newman Racing stables, Powerful Toy, made the winner's circle. Longshot Holborn Hanover, with George Brennan driving for trainer Mark Harder and owners John Fielding and Canamerica Capital Corp., became the first sub-1:50 Progress Pace winner posting a come-from-behind 1:49.3f victory. In 2005, Gryffindor, became the first Delaware-owned and trained winner. After being purchased by Three Point Acres in time to win the Messenger Stake at Harrington Raceway, the sophomore won the 10th Progress Pace wire-to-wire in 1:50 with David Miller in the sulky for conditioner Chuck Crissman. The purse was the event's all-time highest, $394,120. Another Delaware owned and conditioned colt, Total Truth, was the 2006 Progress Pace champion. Trained by George Teague for owners Only Money and Teague Inc., the victory marked the first of two straight for Hall of Fame driver Ron Pierce. Pierce returned to take the 2007 Progress Pace in upset fashion. Trained by Robby Siegelman for The Cheyenne Gang, Ghee House rolled down the lane for a 1:50.4 upset victory to take the 12th edition. In November 2008, overlooked at 32-1, Cat Manzi guided the Joe Poliseon-trained Bettor Sweet to a surprise 1:52.1 victory, the second-richest Progress Pace boasting a $390,000 purse. Two locally owned horses, Rudy Rednose and Badlands Nitro, both trained by George Teague, finished second and third respectively. Vertical Horizon and Jim Morrill Jr., were the winning team for the 2009 edition, with a 1:50.4 triumph. In 2010, Yannick Gingras guided Rockin Image to an impressive 1.50.3 victory. The 2011 winner was Westwardho Hanover piloted by the world's winningest driver, Dave Palone. Heston Blue Chip completed an outstanding Fall campaign to win the 2012 Progress Pace with Tim Tetrick in the bike recording a then 1:49 event record. John Campbell drove his fourth Progress Pace champion in 2013, guiding Sunshine Beach to victory in 1:50.3. And in 2014, Casie Coleman-trained McWicked scored the fastest victory recording a 1:48.4 clocking. Progress Pace Champions Year Purse Winner (Driver) Win Time 1996 $100,000 Armbro Operative (Mike Lachance) 1:53f 1997 $100,000 Dream Away (John Campbell) 1:54f 1998 $225,000 Browning Blue Chip (John Campbell) 1:51.2f 1999 $225,000 Royalflush Hanover (Luc Ouellette) 1:51.2f 2000 $228,000 Powerful Toy (Luc Ouellette) 1:52.1f 2001 $337,100 Peruvian Hanover (Ron Pierce) 1:52.3f 2002 $335,000 Art Major (John Campbell) 1:51f 2003 $350,060 Radar Sign (Luc Ouellette) 1:51.4f 2004 $345,900 Holborn Hanover (George Brennan) 1:49.3f* 2005 $394,120 Gryffindor (David Miller) 1:50f 2006 $348,900 Total Truth (Ron Pierce) 1:52.2f 2007 $350,900 Ghee House (Ron Pierce) 1:50.4f 2008 $390,000 Bettor Sweet (Cat Manzi) 1:51.2f 2009 $350,000 Vertical Horizon (Jim Morrill Jr.) 1:50.4f 2010 $320,000 Rockin Image (Yannick Gingras) 1:50.3f 2011 $330,000 Westwardho Hanover (Dave Palone) 1:49.1f 2012 $270,000 Heston Blue Chip (Tim Tetrick) 1:49f 2013 $284,160 Sunshine Beach (john Campbell) 1:50.3f 2014 $301,560 McWicked (David Miller) *1:48.4f 2015 *- event record Marv Bachrad  

November 21, 2015 - Favorite Time To Say Goodbye (3m Maximus Lindy-Jungfrau-Valley Guardian) at 1.6/1 odds earned a wire to wire victory in today’s Menesek DIJA (purse 2Huf million, 3160 meters distance handicap) for trainer/driver Lajor Marton and owner AMMA Lovereny Kft. The winner traveled the stated distance to hold off 40 meter penalized Speedy Boy (4g Wall Street Banker-Vas Lady-Endless Sands) handled by Veljko Mazsity, with third to Tornado Cole (3m Incredible Cole-Baby Yankee-Yankee Class) driven by Laszlo Kolozsi. The winner was clocked in 1.21.4kr over the nearly two-mile marathon distance. On the Saturday Kincsem Park card was also the API DIJ (purse 600,000Huf, 1900 meters autostart) and timed in 1.17.6kr it was a victory for No Limit Angel (5f Going Kronos-No Limit Dream-Andover Hall) driven by trainer Zaric Saric for SRB owner Ultra Fight Club. The good-gaited pacesetting winner was off at 9.7/1 and defeated Off Road (7g PS Dimo-Gala Rose-Yankee Yankee) and third finishing Prudy (6f Stallone Jet-Ustione-Sebastian Bob) driven by Vito Sadl for trainer Tibor Hajnal. Two year-olds battled in the Ketevesek Versenye (purse 600,000Huf, 1960 meters distance handicap) with the winner being 2.9/1 Uszorasno (2f Maximus Lindy-Hitelezc-Witsends Speedy) for trainer/droiver Balazs Juhasz and owner Kabela Menes Kft. This was the first start and victory for the 1.22kr winner. Also on the Kincsem Park program the 400,000Huf Viragos DIJ was contested over 1900 meters autostart. The 1.17.4kr winner was 3.2/1 Isetta (5f Tschagga-Rassige-Diamond Way) driven by trainer Valjko Mazsity for owner Hico i. Isetta won for the fifth consecutive time and now has those five wins in six 2015 starts after being six for nine in 2014. Saxicola Jet (4f Naglo-Campala RAL-Toss Out) was second, after three straight wins, for Balazs Juhasz. Scania (3f Lucky Boy-Samonica-Spotlite Lobell) was third for Branislav Mukity after scoring five consecutive wins going into this race. Early in the afternoon program the Nebulo Handicap (360,000Huf, 2560 meters) went to 7.7/1 Alegria Dream (7f Andover Hall-Adri di Jesolo-Donerail) timed in 1.20,3kr. She overcame a 20 meter penalty to win for Zsolt Vereb driving for trainer Csaba Lakatos and Drimwind 2011 Kft. Alegria Dream was bred in Canada by Jean-Pierre Dubois’ Reve Avec Moi Dreamwithme. Thomas H. Hicks  

Restrepo, one of the most brilliant sons of champion sire Art Major, is to stand stud this harness racing season at the Goodtime Lodge stud, of Ian and Judi Slater, at Elliminiyt, near Colac, in Victoria’s western district. He boasts stud credentials second to none. His service fee will be $2,200 including GST. Restrepo was a top flight pacer and a most genuine racehorse winning 18 races with 10 placings from 46 starts, earning $507,018. A champion juvenile at two and three, Restrepo won seven of his first nine starts including the Victoria Sapling Stakes, Shakamaker Classic and a heat of the Victoria Derby. As a four-year-old he won six races including the 4YO Bonanza, defeating Smolda in a career best 1:52.4 over 1720 metres and the Central Victorian Pacing Championship and was placed in the Chariots of Fire and Vicbred Final. The following season as a five-year-old Restrepo really came into his own. He earned $303,531 highlighted by successes in the $175,000 Ballarat Cup, the $100,000 Coca Cola Sprint (in 1:54.5) and the $50,000 Legends (in 1:52.8). He was also placed in the Kilmore and Shepparton Cups and a heat of the Inter Dominion (5th in Final) and qualified for the 2013 Miracle Mile. Despite being hampered by a knee injury, Restrepo resumed racing at six years, winning the Hamilton Cup from a 30 metre handicap at the expense of eventual Hunter Cup winner Arden Rooney. Co-trainer Clayton Tonkin said: “Restrepo had absolute sheer speed and a beautiful gait as a youngster. He is a grand looking individual. I’ll be supporting him with some of our own mares this season.” Blessed with all the attributes necessary for stallion greatness, Restrepo carries an impeccable pedigree made up of champion sires, champion racehorses and champion broodmares. His sire, Art Major 1:48.8, has been the leading sire of two-year-olds for the last four years and his dam’s sire D M Dilinger 1:49.6 is the sire of sensational USA mare Moving Pictures 1:49.6, and the damsire of Breeders Crown champion Major Crocket. Art Major’s sons are breeding on and they include Art Official, sire of Let’s Drink On It 1:48.6, winner of a Little Brown Jug heat, and this year’s NSW Tatlow winner Salty Robyn. Restrepo’s grand-dam Cerebrano (by Lordship) is one of the gems of the Australian trotting stud book. She is the dam of 10 individual winners – three in 2:00 – including a dual Oaks winner and Australian 3YO Filly and Aged Mare of the Year in Innocent Eyes 1:57.6 ($421,875). Tracing to a noted foundation mare in Topsy, Restrepo’s distaff side boasts the blood of  revered sires such as Lordship, Lumber Dream, Out To Win, U Scott and Dillon Hall. By Peter Wharton

HARRINGTON, Del. - Ron Short's Charger ($33.40, Allan Davis) was an upset harness racing winner in achieving his third consecutive win Monday in the $12,500 Open II at Harrington Raceway. The 10-year-old altered son of Stampede Hanover was dismissed at 15-to-1 and set all the fractions in a narrow win over a fast closing Special T Rocks. Shiretown Pitbull was parked the entire mile and finished third. Charger recorded his 46th career win for owner/trainer Short and raised his lifetime bankroll to more than $421,000. It was one of four wins on the program for driver Davis, while Montrell Teague registered a driving triple. Matthew Sparacino

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