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WILKES-BARRE PA - Sweet Rock, who was victorious the last time he was able to work out a two-hole trip, again proved his talent as a "pocket rocket" when he won the $20,000 harness racing pacing feature Saturday evening at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in 1:50.   Jim Marohn Jr. hustled the Rocknroll Hanover gelding away to sit right behind pacesetter Parnu Hanover, who put up splits of 26.1, 54.2, and 1:22.1 without getting much of a breather on the engine. Horses in the two-, three-wide, and four-wide tiers couldn't make too much of an impression in the last quarter, but the famed Pocono Pike was just the ticket for Sweet Rock, who won by a length over Allbeef N Nobull, just decisioning Parnu Hanover for the deuce.   Wayne Givens conditions the winner, now a winner of $536,392, for the ownership of Legacy Racing of DE Inc., Reggie Hazzard II, and Gary Calloway.   PHHA / Pocono

Long Live Rock (Rocknroll Hanover) prevailed in Saturday night's Open Pace at Saratoga Casino Hotel. A field of just five started in the $14,000 feature after a late scratch...but what a five it was. Reigning Pacer of the Year Artful Way and invader Luck Be Withyou served as formidable foes for the Rene Allard-trained Long Live Rock who wound up going off as the public's even money favorite. Luck Be Withyou (Jim Devaux) powered out to the early lead and put up sizzling lap-one fractions of 26.2 and 55.1. His first challenge came from Long Live Rock who drew even with him around the final turn before the Allard trainee surged past to win in 1:51.1. Luck Be Withyou was the runner-up while Artful Way (Frank Coppola Jr) earned the show spot. The win was one of three on the night for driver Wally Hennessey who has been on a tear since returning to town this spring. Live racing continues on Sunday afternoon with a matinee beginning at 12:15pm. Mike Sardella

Oh My Joepa takes the harness racing featured pace ($7,500) on Tuesday night (July 4) at Vernon Downs. Before the feature started the big favorite Golden Gun (Justin Huckabone) went off stride. Oh My Joepa (John MacDonald) would take full advantage and charge, out to the lead. The 9 year-old gelding by Rocknroll Hanover would put up all the fractions :27.4, :57.0, 1:24.1, 1:52.0 Rock N Row (Truman Gale),who was the longest shot in the field followed the winner for the entire race. Oh My Joepa ($10.80) who is also owned trained by MacDonald would win for the eighth time this season and the 39th time in 180 starts. Rock N Row would make a late charge but finish second by a length. Modern Gesture (Jimmy Wittemore) would finish third. MacDonald would also capture the nightcap steering Cam's Lucky Sam (Camluck) to a win in 1:51.0. Life Up Front (Chris Lems) would finish second with Skip Jive (Jimmy Whittemore) finishing third. Cam's Lucky Sam would pay $4.90 for the victory Jimmy Whittemore and Josh Kinney had driving doubles as well. Whittemore won with Apollo Seelster ($6.10) and Captain Dragon ($32.00). Kinney went to the winner's circle with Samson J ($4.80) and Allamerican Improv ($8.60). Vernon Downs returns to live action on Thursday with a nine race card starting at 6:45p.m. For more information please go to www.vernondowns.com John Horne for Vernon Downs.

YONKERS, NY, Friday, June 30, 2017 - Locally-debuting Blue Moon Stride (Brian Sears, $5.80) handled the Westchester harness racing crowd with few issues Friday night (June 30th), winning Yonkers Raceway's $55,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. The field, thorough first-half-mile raindrops, was pared to half-dozen after Call Me Queen Be (ill) and Sell a Bit N (late for Lasix) were both withdrawn. In play from position No. 4 (in once notch due to one of those defections), Blue Moon Stride worked around She'sjusadelight N (Ron Cushing), taking the lead right at a :27.1 opening quarter-mile. It was a 56-second intermission before last week's victress, Freeze Out (George Brennan), moved from fifth. That one, as the 13-10 fave, challenged the leader in and out of a 1:23.3 three-quarters before being put away. Blue Moon Stride opened couple of lengths entering lane before widening her stride to win by 3½ lengths in 1:52.2. She'sjustadelight N chased with no shot, while Freeze Out tired to third. I Deal in Kisses (Dan Dube) and Venus Delight (Brent Holland) came away with the minors, while Jewel Leigh A (Mark MacDonald) was always outrun. For second choice Blue Moon Stride, a 4-year-old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover Aussie co-owned by Emilio & Marie Rosati and trained by Mark Harder, it was her first win in 16 seasonal starts (career earnings over $760,000). The exacta paid $15.20, the triple returned $30.40 and the superfecta was refunded due to insufficient starters. A reminder regarding Saturday's (July 1st) simulcast of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby from the Curragh. Races 3 thru 8 shall be imported, with the Derby going as the 7th race (approx. post 12:20 PM ). Mutuel windows (fourth floor only) have an early 10 AM opening. Frank Drucker

The Todd Rattray-trained Harjeet led throughout to win the $40,000 Group 3 Globe Derby Stakes for harness racing three-year-old colts and geldings at  Launceston, Tasmania on Friday night. Harjeet ($2.80) began brilliantly from gate two to lead while the favourite Rocknroll Turbo ($2.20) was caught three-wide until driver Rohan Hillier urged him forward to face the breeze while the other main contender Usain Jolt was dragged back to last from his outside front-row draw, Duggan made his move 700 metres out but that's when Hillier called on the favourite to stake his claim and he moved a half-length clear of Harjeet but Rattray's horse refused to wilt. Harjeet regained the lead and went on to defeat Rocknroll Turbo by 9.5 metres with Usain Jolt a game third almost two metres away. It was Harjeet's third win from only six starts and while he is still very immature Rattray is quietly confident he has a bright future. "My horse hung out and then hung in so once he learns to go straight he's going to be a very good horse," Rattray said. Harjeet a Rocknroll Hanover gelding was bred by the Rattray family and Wayne McLaughlin who was thrilled with the win. "I started this breeding program with the Rattray family about 10 years ago and this is the first one we've been able to get to the races so hopefully he can go right on with it," McLaughlin said. Peter Staples

Plainville, MA---Once, twice, three times Beautiful Lady was used. But fighting back from every challenge, she captured the $12,000 fillies and mares Open Handicap pacing harness racing feature at Plainridge Park on Tuesday afternoon (May 23). Golden Idol (Eddie Davis Jr.) and Beautiful Lady (Bruce Aldrich Jr.) both left and neither would concede the lead. From the pylons, Golden Idol played hardball with Beautiful Lady to the tune of :26.4 and :54.2 before Aldrich gave in and took a seat. When he did, Davis stepped on the gas and opened up a four-length lead by the time they hit the three-quarters in 1:22.1. Around the last turn, Elm Grove Inarush (Greg Merton) made her way up to third and then moved into second in front of Beautiful Lady, but those two were still three lengths behind the leader. However prompting each other along, they caught up to the tiring Golden Idol and then flanked her; Elm Grove Inarush outside and Beautiful Lady by the markers. They paced closely, three-abreast down the lane when Beautiful Lady swelled up and paced by the other two to win by a length in 1:51.3. It was the second win of the year for Beautiful Lady ($3.40) and the time was a new seasonal mark for the mare. The 6-year-old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover is owned by Lester Gelardi Jr. and Anthony Passafaro and is trained by Monique Cohen. It's not too often you see fan-favorite Eddie Davis Jr. go off at odds of 49-1. But that is what happened in the sixth race, where he swung three-deep from eighth onto Highway 495 with Very Well Pretty before driving her down the center of the track to win by a length in 1:54.2. Very Well Pretty set a new lifetime mark in her first-ever visit to the Ridge and rewarded her scant backers with a $101.00 win mutual. Kevin Switzer Jr. and Greg Merton each tallied two winning drives on the afternoon. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Thursday (May 25) with the first post set at 4 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

HARRINGTON, Del. - Bill Sartin and Mark Salerno's Special T Rocks ($11, Jim Morand) was a repeat winner in Monday's $17,500 Open at Harrington Raceway in 1:50.2 over a sloppy harness racing racetrack. Special T Rocks seized the lead from Im Supersonic A at the quarter mile in 27.4 seconds. Arque Hanover, who was parked the mile, applied pressure through the half-mile in 55.1 before yielding to three-quarters in 1:23.1. Poisonous forged a three-wide move but stalled and could not reel in Special T Rocks, who was three lengths the best. Arque Hanover was second with Poisonous third. It was the 46th career win for Special T Rocks, a 9-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding trained by Joe Hundertpfund Jr. It was also the fastest mile of the Harrington meet thus far this year. Art Stafford Jr. had three wins on the program. Matthew Sparacino  

The Sunday night May 21 Running Aces harness racing card featured the return of local favorite Roland N Rock to the Minnesota oval to headline the $11,000 Open Handicap pace. He did not disappoint his loyal fans and pari-mutuel backers as he turned in a dazzling performance as expected. Assigned the outside post in the 8 horse field, driver Nick Roland sent “Rocky” out quickly in search of the lead, but found plenty of competition for the top spot, and opted to float back into the four hole as they checked in at the quarter in a swift 26.4. From there the duo sat patiently through the half in 56.1 before launching their attack, first with a second over position nearing three-quarters (1:24) and then a quick 3 wide brush to take command turning for home, pacing away from the field to score by 2¼ lengths in 1:52.2 with a 28.0 final quarter and a final half in 55.3 SF Donttellonme (J. Casagranda) rounded out the exacta off of an early pocket trip, while pace-setter Easy Again (R.Magee) checked in third. Roland N Rock (by Rocknroll Hanover) returned $3.60 for a $2 mutuel, after posting his 3rd win of the season and boosting his seasonal bankroll to $117,450 for Owners Duane and Connie Roland. Firedrake ($5.20) did not disappoint in his 2017 debut as well, delivering as co-favorite in a nice $6,400 conditioned pacing event. Firedrake and trainer/driver Nick Roland secured a pocket trip behind Bo Master and found his way up the inside of the track late to score a nice win by 2¼ lengths in 1:56.1 Firedrake is owned by Jessica Johnson, and the 4 year old gelding by Dragon Again now sports 7 wins in 16 lifetime tries. The win also completed the back-to-back double for Roland. Steve Wiseman posted a Grand Slam with 4 wins on the Sunday night card, Wiseman fans were rewarded in the opener as he scored aboard Art Genta paying $3.40, race 3 ($2.60) with Muscle Beach, race 4 steering Cenalta Diesel ($7.60) and race 10 with a $4.80 mutuel aboard Magnifique. Wiseman had a triple on the opening night card, and jumps out to the early lead in the driver standings. Lemoyne “Mooney” Svendsen picked up his second driving double in a row with the two biggest prices of the night, Losira in race 5 ($18.60) and Hi Ho’s Little Rev ($21.00) in race 9. Live Racing returns to Running Aces this coming Tuesday, May 23 with a first post of 7:00 pm CDT. By Darin Gagne, Running Aces Track Announcer

HARRINGTON, Del. - Special T Rocks ($7, Ross Wolfenden) returned home a winner Monday in the $17,500 Open pace with a 1:52 harness racing victory. McKenry marched to the early lead at odds of 9/2, setting fractions of 27.3 and 56.1 before Wick N applied serious pressure to three-quarters in 1:24, while Special T Rocks gathered three-wide momentum. McKenry led the field of seven at the top of the stretch but was reeled in by Special T Rocks in deep stretch for the win. Wakizashi Hanover, the race favorite, was a belated second and McKenry held third. Owned by William Sartin and Mark Salerno, it was the fourth win of the year for Special T Rocks, a 9-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding whose previous 2017 wins came at the Meadowlands, where he spent the previous few months. Trained by Joe Hundertpfund Jr., Special T Rocks padded his lifetime earnings to nearly $625,000. It was one of three wins on the program for Wolfenden, who also won with Hey Dali ($8) and Gimmethreestepsmr ($4). Tony Morgan, won the first three races on the program, including both halves of the daily double. In the first race, Ron Davis' Mister Virgin ($3, Morgan) was a dominant nine-length winner in 1:52 for trainer Brooks Gray. The $10,000-claimer set all the fractions from the rail in achieving his 20th career win and tied a personal season's best. Meanwhile, Joan Dalphon and Elanor Laws' Don't Ya Know ($3.40, Morgan) had no trouble in prevailing for the fourth time this season for trainer Jason Skinner to complete the daily double sequence, with a 1:53.3 triumph. Morgan had the race favorite, Rangers Sureshot, in the fourth race but finished third as Classiesistar N ($10.60, Montrell Teague) prevailed in 1:52.4 in a sub-featured $11,000 pace. Matthew Sparacino

ANDERSON, Ind.--May 12, 2017 -- Rock N' Roll World, with harness racing driver John DeLong in the bike, made an emphatic debut at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, May 12 winning the featured event of the evening, a $21,000 Invitational Pace, and in doing so, recorded the nation's fastest mile of the young 2017 season. The 1:48.3 final time established a national season's record for aged pacers on any size track and also marked the fastest mile over the Hoosier Park oval in 2017 through 28 days of live racing. After fetching a cool $165,000 final bid at the Tattersalls 2017 Spring Mixed Sale at The Meadowlands just five days ago, Rock N' Roll World is making good on the investment for new owners Tom Pollack and Jeff Cullipher. Leaving from post seven, DeLong sent Rock N' Roll World away from the gate firing to grab a pocket seat behind the overwhelming favorite, Night Pro and Sam Widger. Night Pro dictated fractions of :26 and :54.2 while the field remained in single file line down the backside. New Talent and Todd Warren were the first to commit to the outer flow as the field approached the final turn. Night Pro continued to call the shots through the three-quarter clocking in 1:22.1 but Rock N' Roll World loomed large in the pocket. Utilizing a :26 final quarter, Rock N' Roll World exploded past Night Pro late in the lane to win by two and three-quarter lengths. Night Pro maintained his position to secure second place honors while Gerries Sport and Trace Tetrick rallied gamely to round out the trifecta. Slightly dismissed at the betting windows, Rock N' Roll World returned $16.60 to his backers at the betting window. "That one had me shaking a little bit," trainer Jeff Cullipher noted in the winner's circle. "He's a very nice horse, I don't know if I expected that much out of him in his first start for us but he's staked to quite a bit of things this year so we're really excited about him." A regally-bred five-year-old son of Rocknroll Hanover - Worldly Beauty, Rock N' Roll World recorded his fourth consecutive victory and has now won five of six seasonal starts. With the 1:48.3 victory, Rock N' Roll World shaved two seconds off his lifetime record while pushing his lifetime bankroll to $583,160. The win was also one of two wins for driver John DeLong and trainer Jeff Cullipher. The DeLong-Cullipher combination also found the winner's circle just a few races later with Shooter's Dream in 1:50 in a conditioned pacing event. Hoosier Park's reining leading driver, Trace Tetrick had five winners on the evening's 14-race card. Tetrick leads all drivers with 77 wins on the 2017 season. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Saturday, May 13 with a 12-race card. With a daily post time of 6:30 p.m., live racing at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 17. The season is highlighted by the 34th edition of the Breeders Crown, harness racing's championship event valued at $6 million, on Friday, Oct. 27 and Saturday, Oct. 28. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com Emily Gaskin Race Marketing Manager, Commentator & Publicist Hoosier Park Racing & Casino

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (April 15, 2017) - Since adding Lasix on April 1, Rodeo Romeo has taken his already considerable talent to a harness racing career-best level. The 5-year-old Rocknroll Hanover stallion won for the second time in three starts since adding Lasix, this time holding off the late charge of Special T Rocks to win the $18,000 pacing feature in a career-best 1:50. Andrew McCarthy moved Rodeo Romeo to the front past an opening quarter in :27. From there, the Chris Ryder-trainee controlled the action and had just enough late to hold off Special T Rocks, who got clear too late and missed by a head. Rodeo Romeo won for the ninth time in 29 career starts and has career earnings of $169,999. He is shared in ownership by Oompa's Farm and Robert Mondillo. In Round 2 action in the Dash For The G-Notes series, Iwillmakeyousaynow won the fastest split in a lifetime-best 1:50.3 over fellow Round 1 winners Downthehighwy and So Take That. Iwillmakeyousaywow is trained by Todd Buter and driven by Tyler Buter. Alex Bullville and P L Idaho won the other divisions. The top point earners are scheduled to return next Saturday in the $17,500 final. Corey Callahan was the driving star of the night with five wins, including a natural hat trick in Races 7-9. Dave Miller won a pair of races while Chris Ryder and Mike Russo each had two training wins. Total handle was $2,040,489 for the 11-race card. Racing resumes next Friday. Post time is 7:15 p.m. For more information, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz

Sheer Rocknroll, a wonderfully consistent four-year-old, should boost her earnings past the $200,000 mark by winning the $25,000 International Animal Health Products Westbred final for harness racing four and five-year-old mares at Gloucester Park on Thursday night. The Rocknroll Hanover mare warmed up for this assignment in eye-catching style last Friday night when she began from the back line and raced in fourth place on the pegs for most of the way before sprinting home strongly to finish second to talented six-year-old gelding Eyre Crusher. The final sections were run in 27.9sec. and 28.2sec. and Sheer Rocknroll finished ahead of several smart performers, including Foxy Dame and Bungalow Bill.   Sheer Rocknroll, trained by Ross Olivieri and driven by Chris Lewis, is handily drawn at barrier four on the front line and she should carry too many guns for the opposition, none of whom has anywhere near the record of Sheer Rocknroll, who has amassed $194,902 from 18 wins and ten placings from 44 starts. Sheer Rocknroll is the first foal out of former star mare Sheer Royalty, who raced only 33 times for nine wins, seven placings and $248,904 in prizemoney. Her victories included three feature events for three-year-old fillies in 2009 --- the group 1 double of the WA Oaks and State Sires Series and the group 3 Daintys Daughter Classic. The three mares drawn inside of Sheer Rocknroll have place prospects as does last-start winner Falling Starzzz (barrier two on the back line) and Lovers Prayer (barrier No. 5), a winner three starts ago. Drawn on the inside of Sheer Rocknroll are Nowuseemegirl (Aiden de Campo), Sea Cider (Michael Grantham) and Kathleen Betty (Shannon Suvaljko). Nowuseemegirl has been driven to victory at all her seven wins by de Campo, but she has been unplaced at her past seven starts since winning at Bunbury last September. She led and faded to fifth behind Lovers Prayer at Gloucester Park at her most recent outing. She is capable of improvement. Sea Cider showed a welcome return to form and ended a losing sequence of 16 when she led and won from Bettor Bling over 1780m at Northam on Thursday March 30. Kathleen Betty rises in class after a last-start fifth behind Alfs Odyssey at Bunbury last Saturday night. She won three in a row (one at Bunbury and two in Albany) in February and March. Ken Casellas

Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin completed the Victorian three-year-old harness racing classic double last night at Tabcorp Park Melton with Miss Graceland powering home in the Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks Final. Having won the Victoria Derby in February with Our Little General, the Smythes Creek power partnership’s stake winnings for the season surpassed the million-dollar mark courtesy of last night’s success with their star filly. It is the sixth season in a row – and seventh time overall – Stewart has hit seven figures in stakes. Miss Graceland, the headline act among a Stewart winning treble last night, is by Rocknroll Hanover out of Amarillen. She cleared out for a 10.5-metre win over race favourite Petacular, with Sheza Sharpie 18m behind the winner in third place. “The filly really deserved to get a good win and we’re rapt,” Tonkin said. “She’s on the way up. She had a couple of easy kills in the country and then last week she put the score on the board and this week she’s really come on.” From barrier seven, driver Chris Alford steered Miss Graceland into the running line back in the field early and was soon trailing Petacular. With about a mile to run Alford made his move three-wide, Petacular’s Michael Stanley tagging the second-favourite to move into the action. Petacular got to the breeze for the last lap, with Miss Graceland again trailing the race favourite one-one. At the home bend Stanley and Petacular had put the leaders away and raced to the front. Shezallapples was the first horse beaten after going too hard early. Miss Graceland got to the outside and the race became almost a carbon copy of the heat a week prior but with one fairly important difference: The placings were reversed. This time Miss Graceland got the better of a typically gutsy Petacular, careering clear over the concluding stages. RE-LIVE MISS GRACELAND'S NEVELE R STUD VICTORIA OAKS TRIUMPH “The Vicbred is about six weeks away. She’ll have a quiet week then she’ll tick along going towards that,” Tonkin said when asked about plans for Miss Graceland. Stewart is now on 98 winners for the season from 280 starts. Miss Graceland's owner, Akram Younan, dedicated the win to his filly's breeders, Tasmanian stalwarts the late Rick Hinds and his wife, Naomi. “Rick passed away and this win was in honour of him and his wife, Naomi,” Younan said. Younan, who also races thoroughbreds, said he was “proud” of Miss Graceland and very thankful for the training performance of the Stewart camp and Alford’s drive. OAKS FINISHING ORDER 1st - Miss Graceland: Brilliant drive and was strong at the line. She's on the up. 2nd - Petacular: Typically brave. She's destined to draw a good barrier in a G1 soon! 3rd - Sheza Sharpie: Almost last at the furlong, went widest & charged late. Nice run! 4th - Flying Moth: Ripper filly. Very consistent & was another big run here. 5th - Angel In White: Was right in the race for 3rd at any old odds. Finished off well enough. 6th - Keyang Secret: Had to burn early & lost momentum before turn behind tiring leader. Good run. 7th - Sanna Cruza: Hit line hard and ran into some dead ends. Forgive. 8th - Our Lady Madonna: Came from last. She'll improve. 9th - Beach Garden: Didn't hit the line as hard as some thought she would.  10th - Shezallapples: Used up petrol early. Powering along in front didn't seem her go.  11th - Nomi Malone: Probably just a bit outclassed against some of these.   12th - Anybeach Anywhere: Pulled hard in the run, which didn't help.   Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

Victorian-bred harness racing gelding Im Rockaria has overcome a worrying setback and is poised for a bold showing in the $200,000 Sky Racing WA Derby at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He has recovered fully from an infection under a cavity in a tooth which caused him to race erratically and finish a distant last in a field of 11 at his latest appearance, in a Derby prelude three Fridays ago. Trainer and part-owner Michael Brennan is bubbling with confidence after Im Rockaria finished a head second to experienced stablemate Naughty Maravu in a 2185m trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning when he dashed over the final 800m in 56sec. Im Rockaria’s prospects soared after he drew the prized No. 1 barrier on the front line in the 2536m Derby and champion reinsman Gary Hall jun. signified his confidence in the gelding when he chose to drive him ahead of highly-promising three-year-olds El Barcelona and Herrick Roosevelt, who are prepared by his father Gary Hall sen. Brennan, who purchased the son of Rocknroll Hanover for just $16,000 at the Victorian yearling sales, has had only one previous runner in a WA Derby --- Im Victorious, who started from the No. 1 barrier and was driven to an all-the-way victory by Justin Prentice five years ago. “This year the barrier draw is a big help, we’ve got the right driver and the horse has got over the little issue we had with his mouth,” Brennan said. “Im Rockaria is ready to go and he has all the qualities needed to win a Derby. He’s strong and he’s fast and I think he is 100 per cent spot on. He loves leading and has never been beaten when he has led. The distance is no problem at all. He’s a really good stayer and he’s got super high speed to go with it. “Obviously, Mitch Maguire is going to be very hard to beat, Herrick Roosevelt has been super impressive and Runrunjimmydunn was most impressive in winning last Friday night. It is by no means a one or two-horse race. There is a lot of quality and this is one of the more even Derbies in recent years.” In his trial on Sunday morning Im Rockaria was driven by Nathan Turvey and he raced three back on the fence before finishing strongly to be second, a head behind Naughty Maravu, an M3-class pacer who set the pace with Brennan in the sulky. “At his most recent start, in a Derby prelude, Im Rockaria tracked up three wide (from the 1100m to be fifth at the bell) and hung in really badly,” Brennan said. “Later we discovered that he had an infection under cavity in a tooth and Gary couldn’t steer him. “This problem is the reason why he hasn’t been able to race over the past three weeks. We had to treat him quite heavily with anti-biotics and we’ve tried a bit of different gear to take the pressure off the jaw. “His win two starts ago, in the Battle of Bunbury, was super.” In that event Im Rockaria enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, before starting a three-wide move 800m from home. He surged to the front at the 500m mark and went on to win by more than three lengths from Rock Diamonds.” Im Rockaria, who has earned $137,275 from ten wins and three seconds from 18 starts, has already won a group 1 feature event, having been successful as a two-year-old in the Pearl Classic at Gloucester Park last June. He is owned by Brennan and his wife Lara, Cam Byers and Dave Skelton (who were part-owners of Im Victorious), Michael Maxwell and Cameron Maggs, who broke in Im Rockaria in Victoria. Im Rockaria is the ninth foal out of Vitness, whose second foal Twelve Paces earned $263,058 from 27 wins and 20 placings from 68 starts. Twelve Paces won a heat of the Victoria Derby at Shepparton in January 2007, beating Triple Vance and Lombo Pocket Watch. He then finished fifth behind Lombo Pocket Watch in the final at Moonee Valley. Mitch Maguire, prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, is handily drawn at barrier three on the front line and looks set to fight out the finish. His form is outstanding, having won at ten of his past 11 starts in a glittering career of 18 starts for 12 wins and two placings for stakes of $197,373. He completed his Derby preparation with an all-the-way win from barrier one in the 2536m group 2 Western Gateway Classic last Friday week. He was favourite at 10/1 on and after a third quarter of the final mile in 28.4sec., he just held on in a final section of 29.3sec. to beat the fast-finishing Maczaffair by a half-head at a 1.57.3 rate. “He overraced and that probably took the sting out of him,” said reinsman Ryan Warwick. “People shouldn’t want to measure him on that performance. Mitch Maguire beat Im Rockaria at Pinjarra four starts ago (when Mitch Maguire worked hard in the breeze). “I’m confident in the horse and the 2536m won’t worry him. I keep going back to his Pinjarra run three starts ago (when he galloped in a stand and made up a huge amount of lost ground to win easily). It was a phenomenal performance and I rate the horse highly. His record is hard to fault and I can’t see any reason to discount him.” Herrick Roosevelt, who has drawn poorly on the outside of the front line, will be driven by Kim Prentice and Chris Voak has been engaged to handle El Barcelona from the outside of the back line. Herrick Roosevelt has raced only four times for two wins, a second to Mitch Maguire (from the breeze) and a last-start third from the breeze behind Mitch Maguire and Maczaffair. “He’s going super,” Prentice said. “I have sat behind him once, in a trial a couple of weeks ago. It was only a jump out, but I love the horse. The biggest problem on Friday night will be holding him out of the mobile because he is inclined to get keen. We will be trying to slot in somewhere.” El Barcelona won for the fifth time from 12 starts when he led from the No. 1 barrier and held on to defeat Handsandwheels and Heza Head Honcho last Friday night. Handsandwheels, to be driven by Aiden de Campo, is nicely drawn on the inside of the back line and certainly has sound place prospects. Clint Hall will drive Runrunjimmydunn, who was produced in fine fettle for a first-up victory in WA last Friday night. The gelding is awkwardly drawn at barrier six, but will have many admirers after his runaway seven-length victory over In Nyrobi, rating 1.56.4 over 2130m last Friday night. “He’s a pretty good horse and I’ll be putting him into the race at some stage,” Hall said. The Mike Reed-trained Maczaffair is a talented performer who has won at eight of her 18 starts and impressed last Friday week when she was tenth at the 600m and seventh with 250m to travel before flying home to be a half-head second to Mitch Maguire last Friday week. The WA Derby was first run in 1917 and a filly has been successful only six times, with those winners being Hilda Grattan (1948), Happy Mint (1950), Swahili (1962), Hill Oro (1969), Via Vista (1981) and Whitbys Miss Penny (1991). Champion reinsman Chris Lewis will be seeking his sixth win in the classic, after victories behind Trunkey Maseratti (1994), Saab (1998), Talladega (2000), Argent Treasure (2008) and In The Force (2009). He will drive the Ross Olivieri-trained Lord Willoughby from barrier No. 2. Lord Willoughby is improving steadily, but has won only three times from 17 starts.  Ken Casellas

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, March 18, 2017-Yonkers Raceway's George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series for Free-For-Allers began Saturday night, with a quartet of $50,000 divisions over a 'sloppy' surface. The opening event saw 3-2 choice Missile J (Tim Tetrick, $5) charge from sixth in the lane to win going away in 1:54.1. Unhurried from post position No. 2, he rolled late, whipping a pocketed Blood Brother (Jason Bartlett) by a length-and-a-half. Third went to a rallying Guantanamo Bay (Scott Zeron), with 78-1 Burning N (Ron Cushing) and a pace-setting Keystone Velocity (Dan Dube) settling for the remainder. For Missile J, a 4-year-old American Ideal gelding trained by Scott DiDomenico for Hoosierland co-owners John McGill and Brian Carsey, it was his fifth win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $22, with the triple returning $76.50. Saturday night's second Levy grouping saw Long Live Rock (Dube, $38.60) author a decisive, first-over upset. Moving from fourth (from post No. 2), he dismissed 1-2 favorite McWicked (Zeron), then drew off to win by three lengths in 1:54.1. Season-debuting All Bets Off (Matt Kakaley) couldn't match the winner's tow but finished second, with 62-1 shot Mattamerican (Mark MacDonald) third. Santa Fe Beachboy (Jordan Stratton) and Melmerby Beach (Tetrick) grabbed the minors. McWicked, caught three-deep early, wound up a badly-beaten seventh. For fifth choice Long Live Rock, an 8-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding owned and trained by Rene Allard, it was his first win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $232, with the triple returning $3,014. The evening's third series soiree has Provocativeprincen (Stratton, $5.70)-from post No. 2-prevail in a blanket finish. Away third, he engaged Bettor's Edge (Brett Miller), then outgamed a pocketed, 8-5 fave Rockin' Ron (Yannick Gingras) by a head in 1:54.2. Mach it So (Tetrick) in his first seasonal start, was third, beaten a neck, with Bettor's Edge and 77-1 Texas Terror N (MacDonald) earning the lesser loot. For second choice Provocativeprincen, an 8-year-old Down Under Grinfromeartoear gelding owned by Harry von Knoblauch and trained by Peter Tritton, he's now 4-for-4 to begin the season. The exacta paid $16.60, with the triple returning $62.50. "He's done nothing wrong since I've sat behind him," Stratton said,. The first round's final foray offered the fastest feet as Soto (Kakaley, $14) from the pocket was able to get 'first run' against defending series champion Bit of a Legend N (Stratton). The former, from post No. 3, whipped the latter by a half-length in 1:53.3. Bit of a Legend N, as the 2-5 choice, was second-up and may have waited a tad too long. Pace-setting Somewhere in L A (Bartlett), Wakizashi Hanover (Tetrick) and a Always at My Place (Gingras) rounded out the payees. For third choice Soto, a 5-year-old son of Rock N Roll Heaven trained by Eric Ell for co-owners Kenneth Wood, William Dittmar Jr. and Stephen Iaquinta, it was his fifth win in nine '17 starts. The exacta paid $23, the triple returned $55 and the superfecta paid $198. "He's just a versatile horse," Kakaley said. "I would have been happy either cutting the mile or sitting second. It may have been different had Bit of a Legend N been first-up, but my horse was very good." The Saturday night Pick 5, buoyed by a carryover in excess of $3,100, was taken down by one bettor. A winning combination of 2/3/8/7/3 returned $13,468.25 for that 50-cent wager. Reminder that Sunday's live all-trot 'French' card begins at 12:30 PM, the final Sunday card until the end of May. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

Seaford, DE --- In late January, Delaware harness racing trainer Kyle Moore picked out a $15,000 claimer for his grandfather. A month later, that one-time claimer won the $27,500 Delaware Special at Dover Downs in an eye-catching 1:50. The pacer now boasts three wins in a row against some of the First State’s best horses. While the move to the top might seem sudden, it’s a return to former glory for 7-year-old pacing stallion Emeritus Maximus. The one time Little Brown Jug contender and Tattersalls January Select Mixed Sale topper has now won seven out of 10 starts in 2017. “He’ll probably be the nicest horse I’ll ever have,” Moore said. Moore, 29, trains Emeritus Maximus for his grandfather, Donald Marine, and Brent Hall. When Marine told Moore to find him a horse at Dover early this year, it was Emeritus Maximus (Rocknroll Hanover-Eternity's Delight) that caught the trainer’s eye. “I remembered him from when he was a 2- and 3-year-old,” Moore said. In those days, Emeritus Maximus, who sold for $20,000 as a yearling, traveled the stakes circuit, competing against the likes of Captaintreacherous, Vegas Vacation and Sunshine Beach. At the start of his 4-year-old season, Emeritus Maximus made headlines when he sold for $248,000 at the Tattersalls January Select Mixed Sale. While he went on to make $107,200 as a 4-year-old, taking a record of 1:49.3 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Emeritus Maximus raced just three times as a 5-year-old and just 13 times as a 6-year-old. He won two races during that time. Nevertheless, Moore knew the pacer represented class when he saw him among the $10,000 claiming ranks at Dover. When Emeritus Maximus made it to the winner’s circle with a come-from-behind victory in 1:52.3, Moore knew he wanted him. Marine, undeterred by an increased $15,000 price tag the following week, claimed Emeritus Maximus on Thursday (Jan. 19). “I gave him off Friday and jogged him Saturday. I was expecting him to be lame,” Moore said, pointing out a scar on the pacer’s knee and recalling rumors of a broken coffin bone. “It turns out he’s the soundest horse in the barn.” Whatever injuries the horse may have sustained in the past, Moore says they’re not bothering him now. Opting not to put Emeritus Maximus back in a claimer, Moore moved him to a non-winners class at Dover in late January. After a third place finish in his first start for the Moore stable, Emeritus Maximus made it to the winner’s circle on Feb. 2 when Yannick Gingras steered him to a 1:52.3 win. He followed that up with an impressive first-over victory in 1:51.4 the next week. Moore says the pacer’s confidence has increased each week. In his first appearance in the Delaware Special, Emeritus Maximus cut the mile but got edged out in the final strides, finishing second to Sweet Rock. The following week, Gingras opted to return to the first-over move the horse handled so well two weeks prior. As Mustang Art cut the mile, hitting fractions of :26.1, :54.2 and 1:21.3, Emeritus Maximus gradually made up ground along the outside. He won the race by a half-length in 1:50. Moore was ecstatic, particularly once he realized the win had been shared on YouTube. "After he won in 1:50, I said I don't care if he wins another race," Moore said. Of course he wasn't complaining when Emeritus Maximus overcame the eight hole and made it back to the winner's circle after another first-over mile, this time reaching the wire in 1:50.3, on March 2. The pacer made it three in a row with a 1:49.3 win last week. In his most recent victory Emeritus Maximus, again assigned the eight hole, left hard. Gingras, not content to settle in third, pushed the horse on, making the lead just after a :25.4 first quarter. Emeritus Maximus went on to set fractions of :54 and 1:21.2 before crossing the wire first in 1:49.3. "I think he's better first-up but last week he was gung-ho the whole mile," Moore said. "He never got a breather." While he admires the horse's talent, it's not the only aspect of Emeritus Maximus that Moore appreciates. Though the stud can be a handful during his daily jog -- kicking sporadically and coming to a halt abruptly whenever the mood strikes him -- Moore enjoys the playful personality the stud brings to the barn. "He's honestly like a big kid," Moore said. "He'll try biting but he's had plenty of opportunities to bite a finger off and never has." Emeritus Maximus will finish out the spring meet at Dover Downs but Moore hasn't yet decided what track he'll visit next. While he hopes the pacer's success on the racetrack will continue, he says Emeritus Maximus has already secured a future on the family farm. Marine, who has several broodmares of his own, plans to stand the horse at stud when his racing days are over. "He's got a home for life," Moore said. by Charlene Sharpe, USTA Web Newsroom Senior Correspondent 

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