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WASHINGTON, PA, Sept. 1, 2018 -- De Los Cielos Deo and Prospect Hill rolled through their respective Pennsylvania Sires Stakes divisions and were looking to complete sweeps in Saturday's $253,000 championships at The Meadows. Instead of coronation, they got comeuppance, upset by Proof in the colt and gelding pacers division and Osterc in the colt and gelding trotting division. The Meadows hosted all four PASS $253,000 freshman championships, with the distaff titles going to Sylph Hanover and Windy Corner. The exciting card turned into a celebration of long shots, as the favorites went 0-8 in the championships and $50,000 consolations. De Los Cielos Deo had been the most impressive PASS performer, winning his preliminary legs by a combined 9 lengths en route to a five-race career unbeaten streak. When he powered past the 16-1 Proof at the quarter and held that lead turning for home, it appeared he would pad his streak. But Proof, a Diamond Creek Racing homebred son of A Rocknroll Dance-Ginger And Fred, is no slouch, finishing first or second in his first five starts. He kicked by De Los Cielos Deo for Scott Zeron and downed him by 1/2 length in a career-best 1:51, with Semi Tough third. "I didn't expect to get that good a trip from post 7," said winning trainer Brian Brown. "We were the only one who really left. It turned out perfect for us. That's why Scott is driving. I wasn't at all confident in the stretch. That's an awfully good horse you're trying to get around. My horse today was just better." Brown said Proof, who soared over $200,000 in career earnings, likely would be pointed to the Metro Pace. Osterc entered the championship in fine form, with three straight PASS victories, but his chances appeared limited from post 9. Indeed, when Prospect Hill was stalking from the pocket into the final turn, it appeared only a matter of time before he gobbled up the leader. But the favorite made an unforced break, and Osterc and Yannick Gingras were able to hold off White Tiger by a head in 1:56.4 to claim the crown. Demon Onthe Hill completed the ticket. "I've felt him better than I did in the warm-up today. He got a little bumpy a few times, but his attitude is just phenomenal," said Jimmy Takter, who conditions the son of Cantab Hall-Oh Oh Hereshoecomes, who now boasts a bankroll of $226,401. "That's why he keeps winning. These 2-year-olds -- they keep on surprising me all the time." Christina Takter and Goran Falk own Osterc, who was named for Thomaz Osterc, a member of Takter's staff who, Takter says, was treated for, and recovered from, a serious illness and is now back performing his duties. Takter said he hasn't decided on the colt's next race. In the other championships: $253,000 PASS Championship -- 2-Year-Old Filly Pacers. Warrawee Ubeaut and Treacherous Reign dominated the preliminaries; when they sat 1-2 at the three-quarters, it looked as if the titans would duel once again. But 13-1 Sylph Hanover sustained a long first-over bid for Matt Kakaley and edged the rallying Philly Hanover by a neck in 1:51.4. Warrawee Ubeaut saved show. "We changed her style a little bit to race from the back," said Ron Burke, who trains Sylph Hanover and Warrawee Beaut. "I think today that was the move because the front end's not holding, so you're racing against a variance on the lead. She came first in a long way two starts ago here and won, so she has it in her. The owners did a good job with her. They picked her out; we just bought into her." Burke Racing Stable, William Switala, James Martin and Joseph Critelli campaign the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-She's A Fan, who's eligible for the She's A Great Lady and the Kentucky Standardbred and now has earned $207,072 $253,000 PASS Championship -- 2-Year-Old Filly Trotters At 12-1, Windy Corner made her first-over move stand up, triumphing in 1:55.3 for Marcus Miller, trainer Erv Miller and owners Tony Holmes and Walter Zent. Magical Beliefs closed well for second, beaten a neck, with Fate Smiled third. The daughter of Yankee Glide-Wind Stroll was winless in PASS preliminary legs, but Marcus Miller said she had shown him that she could compete at that level. "I wouldn't say I was surprised, although the way the race set up definitely surprised me," he said. "I always knew she had go, and she's been getting better all the time. Early on, we were real conservative with her, teaching her the right way to race. I think it set her up to be able to make that move down the backside today and carry it. The last sixteenth or so was anxious, but she was very game." Her bankroll now stands at $173,389. PASS CHAMPIONSHIP NOTES: The consolations went to 9-5E Mass Fortune K (colt and gelding trot), 9-2 Art Lecture (filly pace), 28-1 Fade Into You (filly trot) and 5-1 Captain Malicious (colt and gelding pace) . . . Saturday's upset bug also bit Windsong Leo who was seeking his eighth straight win in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap Pace but finished fourth after a rough trip from post 8. The victory in 1:50.3 went to Phoenix Warrior N for Jim Pantaleano, trainer Scott Betts and owners Timothy Betts, Nicholas Catalano and Steven Moss. by Evan Pattak, for The Meadows

MEADVILLE, PA - The Pennsylvania fair circuit checked into the Crawford County Fair in the northwestern part of the state for two days of racing on Wednesday and Thursday. Each day there was a free-for all event honoring the late local legend Walter "Boots" Dunn in addition to the state Fair Sire Stakes. Boots's longtime friendly rival Roger Hammer swept the two divisions of the FFA pace, both in 2:02: with the Nuclear Breeze gelding R N Nate, a horse which he bred, owns, trains, and drove, and with Mcjaggersonthemove, who was claimed for $7000 by owner/trainer Ryan Shafer and has now three for five for his new connections. Both horses overcame the outside post six. The FFA trot was won by a Lucky Chucky horse with an even-better recent win ratio: Thanks For Playin came to town having won his last four starts at Ocean Downs, and he gave new owner-trainer-driver Lester Mullet a quick return with a 2:06 tally. In the Fair Sire Stakes, last year's terror Venier Hanover is quickly becoming this year's terror Venier Hanover, as the Well Said gelding, who set eight divisional track records at the fairs this year including the local freshman standard, strung together his fourth straight victory after a slow start to his campaign. He won in 2:01.2, fastest of the meet, over Cirrus De Vie, who has a 9-7-2-0 fair record, the two losses to Venier the last two times they have met. Here Dave Brickell got a 28.1 individual last quarter out of Venier Hanover to catch Cirrus De Vie by two lengths for trainer/driver Brickell, also co-owner with Mitchell York. Hammer's Cirrus De Vie may be feeling the wrath of the rejuvenated Venier, but the veteran horseman won the other section of the "A" colt pace in 2:02.2 with Marvalous Falcon, again in a breeder/owner/trainer/driver capacity. Almost as quick as Venier Hanover (just a tick behind in final time) was the Somebeachsomewhere sophomore sidewheeling filly Keystone Diamond, who has now won her last three fair outings for trainer/driver Todd Schadel, who shares ownership with Dr. John Egloff. On the trotting side, the fillies went faster than the colts among both the sophomores (Thursday) and freshmen (Wednesday). Swiftest was another Todd Schadel pupil, Critical Hanover, a daughter of Crazed who is owned by his wife Christine and his son Cody. Todd guided her to a 2:03.4 ¾-length victory over Blow Back (Hammer), and these two are marvels of consistency: Critical Hanover is now 8-5-3-0 at the fairs, Blow Back 9-5-4-0. Honors among the freshmen were won by the Muscle Massive - R T Sun Poco miss RT Gloria De Dios, now unbeaten in three fair starts with a 2:06.2 score for driver Kyle Bolon, trainer Bob Rougeaux III, and the Brocious Racing Stable Inc. (RT Sun Poco may have been the top performer in the last few years of the old Quaker State series.) The freshman pacing filly Crew Sock Hanover has now won five straight at the fairs after Well Said - Chantal Hall baby stepped home first in 2:03.1 for Team Venier Hanover, Dave Brickell and Mitchell York. Fastest of all the freshmen was yet another Todd Schadelite, the gelding Motive Hanover, also by Well Said and out of Maeve Hanover, who has now taken three straight after a 2:02.3 tour of the double oval for Todd and co-owner/son Cody. The Pennsylvania fair circuit again "splits" this coming week, with racing at Indiana on Monday and Tuesday and Wattsburg (Erie County) on Tuesday and Wednesday. From the Pennsylvania Fair Harness Horsemen's Association

CHESTER, PA - Hall of Famer David Miller guided two-year-old pacing fillies May Bride Hanover and Skater Chick to their third Pennsylvania Stallion Series victories on Thursday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia, each their third straight triumph after skipping the first leg, and he may have a hard decision to make as to which filly to guide in the group's Championship race here on Labor Day Monday. Skater Chick, a daughter of Sweet Lou - Ram Rocker, had to do some fancy skating down the backstretch for Miller during her win. She was positioned second-over behind Serena Said, who had had steering issues throughout, and when that filly bore out a path just past the 5/8, Miller guided his filly right through two-wide to go up and tackle the pacesetting Unspoken Promise. From there, Skater Chick had relatively clear sailing, finishing 1 3/4 lengths ahead of Alkippe, who came up the inside to catch Unspoken Promise for second, in 1:54.2. Skater Chick is trained by Mark Harder for Donald Lindsey, Paul Kleinpaste, and Garth Bechtel. In no way did the Captaintreacherous - Musicale Hanover filly May Bride Hanover have it easy in taking her third straight Stallion Series contest. Miller took a 4-tuck early with his charge, then grinded up uncovered and was able to seize a small lead on the far turn, which she extended into the stretch. That jump was good enough to keep her clear of Michelon's Filly, who had been hampered by dull cover but came flying late to reduce the winner's advantage to a half-length at the end of the 1:53.1 mile. Nifty Norman conditions the streaking freshman, who had the fastest mile in StS prelim competition with a 1:52.3 win at The Meadows, for the Pinske Stables and David Hoese. Trillions Hanover, a daughter of Somebeachsomewhere - Tulu Hanover, went straight to the lead in her Stallion Series cut, got to the half in a relatively slow 57.4 half-mile under Brett Miller's guidance, then scurried home in 55 - 27 to winning by an easy 4½ lengths in 1:52.4, fastest of all the Thursday divisions and a personal best. Trillions Hanover became a winner in an StS contest for the second straight time for trainer Tom Fanning and the ownership of Fanning Racing LLC, VIP Internet Stables LLC, and the J L Benson Stable Inc. The Somebeachsomewhere - Foxy Lady miss What A Fox benefited from the red-hot hands of driver Andrew McCarthy to post an upset in her division, holding off 1-5 favorite Darn Tootn Hanover by a neck to take a maiden mark of 1:54.4. McCarthy sent his filly first-over down the backstretch, grinded to the lead shortly after turning for home, then held off the steady late rush of the favorite, who came from sixth at the ¾ pole, to triumph for trainer Brett Pelling and owner David McDuffee. The Harness Bureau of the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission is the official keeper of PA-sired competition points, but an unofficial tally of the standings after the races yielded these horses as the leading pointwinners (ties broken by money won): 1. (tie) May Bride Hanover and Skater Chick, 3, Trillions Hanover, 4. Rock N McRoll, 5. Sweet Cherry, 6. Margret Hill, 7. Unspoken Promise, 8. Michelon's Filly, 9. Able Hanover, 10. Another Beach Day. Sire Stakes two-year-old pacing fillies go in two divisions of their finally preliminary round on Friday's card at Philly. Double winners Warrawee Ubeaut and Treacherous Reign drew into separate divisions, and seem likely to be the crowd's choices as they go postward. From the PHHA Harrah's Philadelphia

After seeing Wild Bill suffer an injury at age 2 and from bleeding issues this year at 3, trainer Ray Schnittker hopes his colt is ready to turn the corner beginning in Saturday's eliminations for the Messenger Stakes at Yonkers Raceway. Wild Bill, a full brother to Dan Patch Award-winner Huntsville, adds Lasix for his upcoming race following off-the-board finishes in his past two starts. For his career, he has won three of eight races and earned $58,391 for Schnittker, who bred Wild Bill with the late Charlie Iannazzo and remains the owner of the colt. "He hadn't been racing that well," Schnittker said. "We scoped him and he was bleeding pretty badly so we put him on Lasix. I think it's going to make a big difference. He trained very well on it and I think it'll be a factor. It seems like it really made a difference, but we're going to find out quickly on Saturday." The Messenger Stakes is the second jewel in the Pacing Triple Crown. Stay Hungry won the first jewel, the Cane Pace, on Aug. 4 at The Meadowlands. The final jewel, the Little Brown Jug, is Sept. 20. Stay Hungry and Wild Bill were among 11 horses entered in the Messenger. The top-four finishers from each of Saturday's two $40,000 eliminations advance to the $500,000 final on Sept. 1 at Yonkers. Racing begins at 6:50 p.m. (EDT), with the Messenger eliminations as races five and six. Wild Bill won the first two races of his career -- including a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes division that included future open-stakes-winners Nutcracker Sweet, Hayden Hanover, and Dorsoduro Hanover -- before consecutive fifth-place finishes that proved to be his final starts of the season. "He got a leg injury so we had to quit with him," Schnittker said. "He came back a hundred percent on that." Wild Bill is a son of Somebeachsomewhere out of Schnittker's mare Wild West Show, who has produced stakes-winners Stevensville, Cowboy Terrier, Beachesofcheyenne, and Huntsville. In 2016, Huntsville paced a world-record-equaling 1:49 mile and was named best 2-year-old male pacer. In 2017, he won the Meadowlands Pace and Cane Pace before retiring in October because of injury. His best win time of the season, 1:47.4, led all 3-year-old pacers. "He's definitely not Huntsville, but he's a pretty nice colt," Schnittker said about Wild Bill. "He's a lot smaller horse, but he's the same type of horse -- he wants to go. He's just nice to drive, two fingers and does everything right. He's a little smarter horse probably than Huntsville. I don't know if he's as fast. I think I'd rather have fast than smart." Wild Bill has a full stakes schedule ahead of him and Schnittker hopes the issues that have hampered the colt are things of the past. "If he can put it together here a little bit, I'd be tickled to death if he could hit the board in the final, we'll see what happens," said Schnittker, who will drive Wild Bill on Saturday. "I'd be surprised if he's not kind of right there. I'm looking for a strong second half of the year." Following are the fields for the eliminations of the Messenger. Jimmy Freight was supplemented for $30,000. First elimination: 1. Babes Dig Me, George Brennan, Tony Alagna, 3-1; 2. Wild Bill, Ray Schnittker, Ray Schnittker, 12-1; 3. JK Wildfire, Jason Bartlett, Brett Pelling, 7-2; 4. Topville Olympian, Brian Sears, Chris Oakes, 3-1; 5. Nutcracker Sweet, Jordan Stratton, Jimmy Takter, 3-2. Second elimination: 1. Springsteen, Brian Sears, Rene Allard, 5-2; 2. Winston, Corey Callahan, John Butenschoen, 8-1; 3. Decoy, Mark MacDonald, Jimmy Takter, 9-1; 4. Jimmy Freight, Louis Roy, Andrew Harris, 9-5; 5. Stay Hungry, Doug McNair, Tony Alagna, 2-1; 6. Kwik Talkin, Jordan Stratton, Rob Harmon, 20-1. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA 

Lexington, KY - The Kentucky Sires Stakes (KYSS) for freshman pacers comprised the first five races on Saturday night at The Red Mile. Each division, three for the boys and a pair for the girls went for a purse of $30,000. Local horseman Jim Avritt of Lebanon, KY was on hand to watch his pair of talented homebred fillies sweep both divisions of the first leg for the father son trainer-driver team of Gregg and Doug McNair. Mr. Averitt's wondrous evening began with the Somebeachsomewhere first foal from his World Champion multiple Grand Circuit stakes winning mare Precocious Beauty, Beauthonthebeach win the opener in 1:53 in a forwardly placed effort. After unpressed early fractions, a threat came in the form of the previously unbeaten Margret Hill (David Miller) who rolled up on Beautyonthebeach around the final bend but was rebuffed with a 26.4 final stanza by the winner. The team came right back with Prescient Beauty, an Art Major full sister to the aforementioned Precocious Beauty going virtually the same trip and taking the same 1:53 record. Comfortable throughout, Prescient Beauty warded off the strong close of another unbeaten Brian Brown pupil in Edge Of Eternity (D. Miller) with minimal urging through the 27.1 end of the mile while winning for the third time in four outings. Captain Trevor (Andy McCarthy) became another stakes winning credit for Captaintreacherous who is enjoying a remarkable start to his career as a sire with a 20-1 upset score in 1:51.2 in the first colt split for trainer Tony Alagna. McCarthy set the colt up beautifully with a quick start, securing a pocket trip behind honest fractions set by Yacht Week who dueled with Blacklight around the second turn then drifted off the rail allowing a clear path for Captain Trevor who held off the furious rally of Magic Joe Lindy (Scott Zeron) through the 27.1 final quarter. Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Brad Grant and Captain Trevor Racing own the winner, a $75,000 Harrisburg purchase from breeders Bay's Stable and Riverview Racing. Blood Money (Jordan Stratton), a son of another exciting first crop sire in Sweet Lou, won the second colt split in 1:51.3. Stratton worked out a lovely second over ride then fanned off the cover with plenty through the 26.3 final quarter to get by Egomania (D. Miller) and US Captain (McNair). It is the third win in four outings for owner/breeder Adam Bowden's Diamond Creek Racing. Jimmy Takter trains the winner. Hall of Fame driver David Miller broke through in the last colt division to win the fastest of the night's stakes with Can't Beach That in 1:50.4. Miller moved the Somebeachsomewhere colt to the front just past the 55.2 half, survived last turn pressure from Major Deception (Zeron) then just lasted over the late-flying Hurrikane Emperor (Stratton) who simply ran out of racetrack. The winner is trained in the Nifty Norman barn for Pinske Stables, Mel Segal and Kentuckiana Racing Stable. Bred by Mr. Segal, the colt is an $80,000 Lexington Selected Sale graduate. Racing resumes tomorrow night at 7:00 pm with seven divisions of the 3-year-old KYSS Leg #1 featuring Hambletonian heat winner Tactical Landing and Milstein Pace winner Thinkbig Dreambig. by Nick Salvi, for The Red Mile

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 18, 2018-Tepid choice Somewhere in L A (Jason Bartlett, $6.10) finished what he started Saturday night (Aug. 19th), winning Yonkers Raceway's $44,000 Open Handicap Pace. Somewhere in L A-from post position No. 5-threw down intervals of :26.2; 55.4; 1:23 and 1:51.4. He whipped a pocketed McErlean (Brent Holland) by a length, with Theartofconfusion A (Mark MacDonald), Techtor Hanover (Dan Dube) and Always at My Place (George Brennan) rounding out the payees. For Somewhere in L A, a 7-year-old Somebeachsomewhere gelding co-owned by D'Elegance Stable IX, Carmen Iannacone, T L P & Gandolfo Stables and trained by Richard Banca, it was his eighth win in 20 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $32.20, the triple returned $102 and the superfecta paid $397. It was one of Bartlett's six wins during the dozen-race card. Sears won thrice, while New Zealand driving champion Dexter Dunn began his stateside odyssey with a pair of drives. Dunn finished third as an odds-on favorite and seventh with an outsider. Sunday's (Aug. 19th) matinee has a first post of 12:35 PM, with races 1 through 4 of 'French' theme, two at the mile-and-a-quarter and two at the mile-and-a-half distance. The 'New York, New York Double' is comprised of Saratoga's first race and Yonkers' third. Post times are 1 PM and 1:35 PM, respectively. A friendly reminder from Yonkers Raceway that Sunday afternoon’s (Aug. 19th) Pick 5 wager starts with a carryover of $4,390.53 and a $15,000 guaranteed pool. The guarantee is in conjunction with the U.S. Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program. The Pick 5 is a 50-cent base wager comprising races 7 through 11 (if 11 or less races, the gimmick is the last five races on the card). It has no consolation payoff, meaning if no one selects all five winners (as was the case Saturday night), the entire pool (minus takeout) moves to the next racing program. Sunday‘s program may be downloaded at http://www.empirecitycasino.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/sun_program.pdf First post Sunday is 12:35 PM. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

WASHINGTON, PA, July 28, 2018 - Victimized by brutal trips in his last two starts, Dorsoduro Hanover finally got the journey he needed and pounced on the opportunity to win Saturday's $400,000 harness racing final of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids in 1:50.1 at The Meadows.   American History, who won an elimination of the 52nd edition of the Adios, raced well first over to finish second, 1-1/4 lengths back, while Hitman Hill, the other elimination winner, could not improve position in the Lightning Lane and settled for show.   Dorsoduro Hanover gave The Meadows-based trainer Ron Burke, perennially the sport's leading conditioner, his first blanket of Adios orchids as the head of his stable, although he was assistant for his father, Mickey, when their horse, May June Character, won the 2007 Adios.   A Somebeachsomewhere-Deer Valley Miss gelding who cost $100,000 as a yearling, Dorsoduro Hanover was roughed up from post 10 in the Meadowlands Pace final and again in is Adios elimination but still managed to finish second each time.   It seemed likely that he was only a good trip away from a signature victory . . . and Matt Kakaley provided it for him giving him a 28.3 second-panel refresher after a 26.3 opening-quarter burst to the lead.   "We got a big breather there in the second quarter," Kakaley said. "I knew he would be tough off that . . . if he didn't win with that trip, something was wrong. I'm happy for the horse. He's showing everybody that he's a top colt."   American History took up the chase before the half and pursued the winner gamely but was all out late to preserve his place finish.   "He raced phenomenal. I couldn't be more happy with how he raced," said his trainer, Tony Alagna. "We knew Matt had the fractions his way, but even around the last turn, we had a shot to win the whole thing. He hung tough to be second."   Once Dorsoduro Hanover crossed the wire, a jubilant Burke and members of his staff sprinted from the paddock to the winners' circle, eschewing the golf cart that customarily provides transport. Burke, however, indicated the wins in 2007 and 2018 were equally important to him.   "We have a big crew, and to me, that's what it's about: doing it together," Burke said. "We probably spent about $10 million chasing this, and we finally got one. It's a great feeling to enjoy it with our staff and our core group."   In that core group are the owners of Dorsoduro Hanover, who now has earned $575,803 for them: Burke Racing Stable; Silva, Purnell & Libby; Weaver Bruscemi LLC, and Wingfield Five.   Burke said Dorsoduro Hanover will be pointed to the Carl Milstein at Northfield.   ADIOS NOTES: Burke entered 26 horses on the 16-race Adios Day card, not a record for him but still a heckuva lot better than average. Burke ended the day with seven wins — also a heckuva lot better than average — including four by Kakaley, two by Yannick Gingras and one by Dave Palone. . . For the second straight year, James Witherite – who also works as a race analyst, race charter, copy editor and jazz organist – found time to entertain the crowd as Adios Day bugler.   by Evan Pattak, for The Meadows

East Rutherford, NJ - This Breakfast With The Babies (BWTB) sponsored by Fashion Farms, final edition, got off with a bang this morning with the Father Patrick filly Sister's Promise coming from mid-pack to win in 1:58.1 / 27.4 for Tim Tetrick. Biding their time as Amazato (Trond Smedshammer) led the field by the half in 1:00.2 and 1:30.2 three panels, when Tetrick fanned Sister's Promise wide in the stretch she sailed by under her own power to win by 3½ lengths over that rival, her last quarter timed in 27.2. Linda Toscano trains the winner for Brittany Farms who paid $120,000 for her at Harrisburg and Fred Hertrich, III is the breeder. Aldebaranwalkabout (Andy Miller) survived the furious close of White Tiger (Anthony McDonald) to win the third in 1:56.2. Left with a long lead after a few broke behind him, the winner passed the three quarters alone in 1:28 while White Tiger was maneuvered around traffic, trotting an individual 27.1 home to just miss. Aldebaran Park bred and owns the winning son of Muscle Hill. The enigmatic Greenshoe made another strong impression this morning with an absolutely effortless 1:55.1 jaunt for Brian Sears, trotting home alone in 27 flat with the driver motionless. With Peter Haughton Memorial eliminations unnecessary, this served as a prep for the $422,350 stake on Hambletonian Day. The Father Patrick colt, a $330,000 Lexington Select buy for Anders Strom as Courant, INC was bred by Al Libfeld and Marvin Katz. Donald DuPont won with Roy Dobbins homebred Muscle Hill filly Misscheckmatehill in 2:00. 3, holding Bride (DR Ackerman) at bay through the stretch. Another impressive homebred kicked off the pacing races as the 3 Brothers Stable's JK Mardi Says zipped around the oval all by herself in 1:55.2 for Scott Zeron. Left to a long lead throughout the 1:00.1 half and 1:28.1 three panels, the Somebeachsomewhere filly sprinted home in 27.1 on her own. Nancy Johansson trains her. In the season finale for BWTB the Sweet Lou half-brother to Vintage Master and Great Vintage Division Bell (Josert Fonseca) took a 1:53.4 record for owner/breeders Christina Takter and John Fielding. Jimmy Takter is, of course, the trainer. The day closed with Pure Country, the "Grande Dame" of Adam Bowden's Diamond Creek Farms zooming around the course in 1:51.3 / 26.1 for Brian Sears as she prepares for the Lady Liberty and the second half of the 2018 campaign. It was just a year ago that trainer Jimmy Takter qualified her in an amazing 1:48 flat which launched the now 5-year-old champion into another Dan Patch award winning season, making her the only female in Standardbred history to win that prestigious award at ages 2,3 and 4. It looks like she's raced herself back into contention for one more shot at the title. Live racing returns tonight when the Hambletonian Oaks eliminations highlight the 12 race card. It's also Seafood Fest with a variety of purveyors offering their culinary delights for you dining pleasure. Post time is 7:15 pm. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The first four of five divisions of the first leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for two-year-old pacing colts on Saturday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono were conducted in lovely weather, with a slight stretch headbreeze, but there was a 180-degree shift in the direction and intensity of the wind, and the addition of rain from the heavens, when the "featured division" of the Sires, containing three of the five winners in recent PA All-Stars action here, went postward. And the adverse weather seemed to have absolutely no effect on the prohibitive favorite De Los Cielos Deo ("from the heavens of God"), a Captaintreacherous - Lisjune colt who won by 3¾ lengths in 1:52.4. The unfolding of the race was interesting. Four of the seven contestants left quickly into a headwind, with the Ron Burke trainee De Los Cielos Deo pacing three-wide to the 1/8 under the guidance of Dave Palone, then moving to the top just past the 27.3 quarter. He was quickly confronted by his stablemate No Mas Amor, who seemed fated to racing first-over if he didn't make something happen, and driver Anthony Napolitano did, going around his stablemate before a 54.3 half - coming his own second panel in the vicinity of 26.3 with the tailwind. No Mas Amor backed things off into the now-headwind to reach the ¾ in 1:24, but De Los Cielos Deo was right on his back then out on the far turn, and despite bearing out slightly at headstretch, the winner finished powerfully in drawing off. Ehrmantraut stayed close most of the way and was second, 2¼ lengths clear of Duddie's Lot, who photoed No Mas Amor for third. But they were all way behind De Los Cielos Deo, undefeated in two purse starts and four trips gateward, who has as good a right as anyone to consider himself numero uno among the babies right now for Burke Racing Stable LLC, Lawrence Karr, J&T Silva - Purnel & Libby, and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Trainer Brian Brown started a consecutive stakes double with the Sombeachsomewhere - Allamerican Cognac colt Air Force Hanover, recording a personal best of 1:52, a season's record for all freshmen on 5/8-mile ovals. Air Force Hanover, an even-money favorite to main foe Captain Malicious at 7-5, actually outleft his lefthand rival, but Captain Malicious came blasting through from the inner spot, forcing tucks in a monstrous opening quarter of 25.3, with the winner into the two-hole, where he stayed during moderated middle splits of 54.3 and 1:23.1. Driver Simon Allard tipped Air Force Hanover out at headstretch, and while the pacesetter held gamely, the pocket rocket had enough firepower to get a head up on the money. He is owned by Country Club Acres Inc., Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, and William Donovan. Proof remained undefeated - in two purse races and four lines overall - with a well-earned victory in 1:52.2, a new mark and a season's record for about 18 minutes until his Team Brown stablemate broke it. Driver Jim Morrill Jr. had to go the overland route from midpack with the son of A Rocknroll Dance - Ginger And Fred at the 5/8, but the pair made the lead in the lane and dug in to withstand Bring The Thunder, who followed tightly on his back, by a half-length. Diamond Creek Racing owns the successful favorite. After opening his career with three straight "2"s on his charted lines, Captain Victorious was finally able to make the breakthrough in his Sire Stakes division with a 1:53 victory. Marcus Miller hustled the son of Captaintreacherous - Belclaire right to the top despite the outside post seven, then yielded to favored Blood Money at the 26.4 quarter. Captain Victorious sat behind a long battle between the leader and first-over Semi Tough in a 56.2 back half, went to the Pocono Pike, and rallied for a length victory over the tough Semi Tough, who photoed the previously-unbeaten Blood Money for second. Julie Miller conditions the victorious freshman for the Andy Miller Stable Inc., Jean Goehlen, and Caroll Huffman. Two longshot colts were separated by a nose at the end of their division, and their names are as related as their proximity at the finish, as Pyro edged Aflame Hanover to take a mark of 1:54. Pyro was still sixth and inside early in the stretch, but as the front horses softened a bit, Pat Berry was able to circle his live horse out to four-wide and just caught Aflame Hanover in the shadow of the wire; favored Lyons Night Hawk, after a troubled trip, was another ¾ of a length back in third. Pyro is a Sweet Lou colt out of Whetstone Hanover who started a Sires double for trainer Ron Burke, and he is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Lawrence Karr, Phillip Collura, and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

CHESTER, PA - Destiny Hanover, holding on bravely after having to come first-over, just withstood the inside charge of Belle's Delight to be victorious in the $16,000 distaff pacing feature Friday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia. Driver Tim Tetrick started his Somebeachsomewhere sophomore filly on the first-over route nearing the half and gained on Dolphin Island, who had rushed to the lead nearing the 26.3 opener then had gotten a breather to the 55.4 half. Destiny Hanover had gained ground but still had not caught up with Dolphin Island, who passed the ¾ pole in 1:23.3, nor would she until nearing midstretch, when the pacesetting favorite tired some. But Destiny Hanover then had to stay game to hold off the passing lane move of Belle's Delight, doing so by a nose in 1:53.2. Jake Leamon guides the winning filly, whose career started but two months ago but has seen her amass four victories in seven starts including a Pennsylvania All-Stars victory, for David Van Dusen, Michael Cimaglio, and Stephen Demeter. There were also a pair of $14,500 pacing events for seasoned fast-class distaffs. In the first, the occasionally-difficult Nerida Franco N had both her best manners and best speed, rolling on the engine in 26.3, 55, and 1:22.2, then holding off a late charge from On Your Six by a neck in 1:51. Allan Davis was behind the Lis Mara mare, now a winner of $185,405 for trainer Michael Hall, who is also the co-owner with David Hamm. After the second co-feature, Tim Tetrick had as many wins on the afternoon (four, in ten drives for 40%) as did the trailing post nine for the meet (four, in 103 starts, 4%) when he guided the Roll With Joe mare Obvious Blue Chip off cover from the treacherous trailing spot for her to get home in 1:51. Tetrick managed to get to third-over, saw the two horses in front of him get to the rail by midturn as the pacesetter fell back, then paced down the center of the track to catch Valuable Art, who had cleared on her raw bid, by a half-length. Hot trainer Gareth Dowse conditions the winner of $430,659 for the NLG Racing Stable and Stephen Klunowski. The wagering public was not fooled by the challenging starting spot, as they sent off Obvious Blue Chip as the even money favorite. Tetrick wound up the day with five sulky successes. In the last ten cards during which he has participated at Philly, he has won 29 races in 148 starts (20%), including four triples, two quadruples, and Friday's quintuple. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER PA - Featured at the start of the racing week at Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon were a pair of $16,000 conditioned events, one on each gait. The pacers were up first, and their race was taken by the Somebeachsomewhere sophomore colt I'm A Big Deal in 1:51.3. A Pennsylvania Sire Stakes winner in 1:50.2 on May 19, I'm A Big Deal was sent right to the front by driver George Napolitano Jr. and held sway the rest of the way, with No Easy Day making it no easy day for the winner of $119,594 in the stretch, but the "Big Deal" still had enough to tally by 1¼ lengths. Chris Ryder trains the colt, and he co-owns him with Craig Henderson and Robert Mondillo. On the trotting side, Scirocco Rob, third in the recent Beal Consolation, enjoyed the downturn in opposition, posting a new mark of 1:53 for driver Corey Callahan and trainer John Butenschoen. The altered son of Explosive Matter, coming first-over, was resisted the length of the 27.3 third quarter by pacesetting Im Your Captain, but through the last quarter the winner of $158,210 asserted his superiority, clear by 6½ lengths over Im Your Captain at the wire. Kathleen and Lewis Whitaker Jr. are the owners of the talented sophomore. Leading driver Tim Tetrick continued his recent hot form, bringing four horses home first in the Wednesday afternoon sunshine. From PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Stay Hungry and Courtly Choice were the harness racing winners of the $50,000 eliminations for next week's Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace Saturday night at the Meadowlands. "(The trip) worked out great and he got the job done," said Doug McNair, who guided Stay Hungry to victory in the first elim. "The trips have not worked out 100 percent for him." Until Saturday night, that is. McNair was content to race Stay Hungry from off the pace, sitting fifth at the quarter before picking up live cover from 37-1 shot Ideal Feeling after the half, where even-money favorite Nutcracker Sweet had the lead in :55.1. Ideal Feeling continued to make progress on the rim passing three-quarters. After the field straightened away in the stretch, McNair tipped the son of Somebeachsomewhere off his cover, and Stay Hungry did the rest. He cruised to the wire, a three-quarter length winner over the pocket-sitting Hayden Hanover. Thinkbig Dreambig closed well for third, while Nutcracker Sweet and This Is The Plan finished fourth and fifth, respectively, to qualify for next week's $701,830 final. "He's come back well," said trainer Tony Alagna of Stay Hungry. "The five-eighths mile racing is really not his forte (he finished fourth at Pocono in the Hempt). Everything came together tonight." As the 2-1 second choice, Stay Hungry paid $6.40 to win. He competed the mile in a lifetime-best 1:49. Two races later, Courtly Choice, supplemented to the event by his connections for $61,690, sat third as 4-5 favorite Jimmy Freight (the other supplemental entrant) cut out fractions of :27, :54.2 and 1:22.2. David Miller moved his horse off the rail at the five-eighths and inched closer to the leader around the far turn and still had work to do at the head of the stretch. But he was up to the task. Courtly Choice eased past Jimmy Freight in deep stretch and had more than enough to hold off the late rally of the pocket-sitting American History, who finished three-quarters of a length back in second. Jimmy Freight and Dorsoduro Hanover finished in a dead-heat for third while Babes Dig Me claimed the last spot in the final by finishing fifth. "I actually got away where I expected to," said David Miller. "He felt really strong. I asked him and he paced really hard. He's got big lungs and can carry his speed." "From last year to this year, he's really matured," said winning trainer Blake MacIntosh. "He loves to race now." As the 2-1 second choice in the wagering, Courtly Choice returned $6.00 to his backers. The son of Art Major hit the wire in a lifetime-best 1:48.2. A LITTLE MORE:  No one hit the 50-Cent Pick-5, meaning that for the first time since January, the wager will have a carryover. The last time there was a Pick-5 carryover, the pool total exceeded $250,000. … Speaking of carryovers, the Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $276,939. This Friday, July 13, the JSH5 will have a mandatory payout, meaning that to cash, one does not have to hold the only ticket with the winning combination. … For the second consecutive race card after a nearly two-month drought, the 50-Cent Pick-4 pool went past the $100,000 mark, as a total of $108,123 was poured into the pot. … The 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 was tough, with three early races going to a pair of 16-1 shots and a 26-1 chance. In the end, only one player survived six legs, and he or she cashed in for $12,491. … All-source wagering on the 12-race card totaled $2,513,366. … Racing resumes Friday at the Big M at 7:15 p.m. … Next Saturday has an early post time of 6:35 p.m. The featured event is the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. That morning, at 11 a.m., a new era in Big M history will be ushered in as sports betting will be available. The field for the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace, an open event for 3-year-olds, with post position, horse (driver, trainer) and morning-line odds. The Pace takes place on Saturday, July 14 and has an approximate post time of 9:45 p.m. PP HORSE (DRIVER, TRAINER), ODDS 1. Stay Hungry by Somebeachsomewhere - (Doug McNair, Tony Alagna), 3-1 2. This Is The Plan by Somebeachsomewhere - (Tim Tetrick, Chris Ryder), 15-1 3. American History by American Ideal (Yannick Gingras, Tony Alagna), 5-1 4. Jimmy Freight by Sportswriter - (Louis-Philippe Roy, Andrew Harris), 9-2 5. Courtly Choice by Art Major - (David Miller, Blake MacIntosh), 5-2 6. Nutcracker Sweet by Bettor's Delight - (No Driver, Jimmy Takter), 15-1 7. Hayden Hanover by Somebeachsomewhere - (Andy Miller, Julie Miller), 8-1 8. Thinkbig Dreambig by Bettor's Delight - (Jordan Stratton, Jimmy Takter), 12-1 9. Babes Dig Me by Somebeachsomewhere - (Brett Miller, Tony Alagna), 30-1 10. Dorsoduro Hanover by Somebeachsomewhere - (Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke), 15-1 by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands    

WASHINGTON, PA, July 7, 2018 -- Bestseller Hanover and Warrawee Ubeaut each stopped the timer in 1:52.4 -- fastest miles this year by harness racing freshman filly pacers on a five-eighths-mile track -- to highlight Saturday's $182,962 Pennsylvania Sires Stake at The Meadows. The event, known as the Sand Tart, was contested over three divisions, with She's Allright taking the other split. Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke teamed for a Sand Tart double with Warrawee Ubeaut and She's Allright. A $130,000 yearling acquisition, Bestseller Hanover launched her career with a front-end 1:53.1 victory at Woodbine Mohawk, but that was only a warm-up for Saturday's performance. She vaulted to the lead from post 7 for Dave Palone and jogged home, defeating Art Lecture by 2-1/4 lengths. Louphoria earned show. "She's done everything right from the start," said Eric Adams, who trains the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Bittorsweet Terror for Miller Farms. "She was a little quirky at first, throwing her head a lot. She was a little bit hesitant when we started with her, but once she got the hang of it, it was two fingers all the time. She has all the big stake races in Canada and whatever we can get to down here." Warrawee Ubeaut was just as impressive, quarter-poling to the lead in her career debut and downing her stablemate, Sylph Hanover, by 3 lengths. Philly Hanover rallied for show. "She can get a little warm here and there, so we just wanted to make sure she'd keep her head on straight," Gingras said. "She was perfectly behaved today. She has a wealth of ability. She could be a real top horse." Burke Racing Stable, Phillip Collura, J&T Silva, Purnell&Libby and Weaver Bruscemi, LLC campaign Warrawee Ubeaut, a daughter of Sweet Lou-Great Memories. She's Allright was more than all right in her initial career start, scoring on the front end in 1:53. Rockn Philly was second, 3-1/4 lengths back, while Sweet Chrome completed the ticket. "She's out of a very good family," Burke said of the homebred daughter of Sweet Lou-Atsallrite Hanover. "Those are the kind that you expect sometimes will step it up. She's good gaited and an honest little horse." She's Allright races for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Michelle Yanek and Collura. In the $18,000 Preferred Handicap Pace, Phoenix Warrior N made it two straight with a facile front-end triumph in 1:50.1 for Jim Pantaleano, trainer Scott Betts and owners Timothy Betts, Nicholas Catalano and Stephen Moss. The first-over Reggiano was second, beaten 2 lengths, with Stride Of Pride third. The 8-year-old Jereme's Jet-Never Walk Alone gelding lifted his lifetime bankroll to $298,913. Aaron Merriman and Palone each collected three wins on the 13-race card. by Evan Pattak, for The Meadows        

When a teenage John Fodera began owning racehorses 57 years ago, he had no idea where it would lead him. But over the ensuing years, his involvement has brought him to the winner's circle in many of harness racing's great events, including the Breeders Crown, North America Cup, Little Brown Jug and Metro Pace. He will try again this year to add the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace to the list. Fodera, a Staten Island resident who has attended races at the Meadowlands since opening night in 1976, is a partner on three horses in Saturday's eliminations for the Meadowlands Pace. All three -- American History, Babes Dig Me and Captain Deo -- are trained by Tony Alagna. Those three horses are among five Alagna hopefuls in the elims, with O'Brien Award-winner Stay Hungry and Odds On Lauderdale joining the group. The eliminations for the Meadowlands Pace, which is for 3-year-old pacers, are part of a Saturday card at the Big M that includes the $250,000 finals of the Graduate Series for 4-year-old pacers and trotters. Racing begins at 6:35 p.m. (EDT). The Meadowlands Pace eliminations are races six and eight. The Graduate Series finals are races five and 10. "I've been in the business since I was 16 years old," the 73-year-old Fodera said. "It goes back a long, long time. The majority of years I was in the claiming business, and I did well. I prided myself on watching all the races. I didn't even know what the yearling business was all about back then. "Little by little I got involved (with yearlings) and this is where we are now. It's been fun in the game. It's been really good; I can't complain at all." Fodera got started owning horses with a $2,500 claimer named Sir Carlith that he bought with his cousin, Jim McGovern. He developed friendships with a number of owners over the years at the Meadowlands, including Brittany Farms' George Segal and Myron Bell, who helped get Fodera started with yearlings and stakes races. Since then, Fodera has been a partner on numerous stakes-winners including Luckyisasluckydoes, Yankee Skyscaper, Boulder Creek, Mr Feelgood, Tell All, Shake It Cerry, and Artspeak. Tell All was Canada's Horse of the Year in 2007 as well as a Dan Patch Award winner. Shake It Cerry was Trotter of the Year in 2014 while Boulder Creek and Artspeak were divisional champions. As for Fodera's Meadowlands Pace horses, American History heads to his elimination off a 1:47 mile in a conditioned race last week at the Meadowlands. The time was one-fifth of a second off the world record for a 3-year-old pacer. For his career, the son of American Ideal-Perfect Touch has won five of 10 races and earned $100,243 for owners Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz and American History Racing, which includes Fodera. The colt finished last season with a third-place finish behind Lost In Time and Stay Hungry in the Governor's Cup. This year, he was third in his elimination of the North America Cup and 10th in the final. American History, the No. 1-ranked horse in Meadowlands analyst Dave Little's final Road to the Meadowlands Pace, is in the second of the two eliminations, with supplemental entries Courtly Choice and Jimmy Freight plus Fashiononthebeach, Babes Dig Me, Odds On Lauderdale, Grand Teton and Dorsoduro Hanover. American History and driver Yannick Gingras will start from post one. "We were very high on him last year," Fodera said about American History. "Tony took his time with him, that's why he only had five starts. We started real late at the end of the Lexington meet and he showed he had a lot of talent. And it's come to the fore. "I thought he went a giant mile in the North America Cup elim; parked three deep to the quarter in (:26.1), and leading before getting beat by three-quarters of a length. The week after, he was as flat as could be. He couldn't beat anybody. He just didn't go. No excuses. We gave him a week off and he came back and trained great before last Friday. We're confident he will put in a very respectful mile here. I think it's going to be some race." Babes Dig Me, a son of Somebeachsomewhere-Western Babe, has won two of 15 lifetime races and earned $122,974 for owners Brad Grant, Joe Sbrocco, Robert Leblanc and In The Gym Partners, which includes Fodera. The colt was third in the Art Rooney Pace and second to Courtly Choice in the consolation division of the North America Cup. Captain Deo is in the first Meadowlands Pace elimination, with Ideal Feeling, Hayden Hanover, This Is The Plan, Nutcracker Sweet, Stay Hungry, and Thinkbig Dreambig. Captain Deo, a son of Somebeachsomewhere-Worldly Beauty, has won two of 10 career races and $30,307 for owners Alagna Racing, Sbrocco, In The Gym Partners, and Captain Deo Partners. Elimination winners draw for posts one through six for the final. "I think the eliminations will be very exciting," said Fodera, who retired in 2017 as principal at St. Peter's Boys High School on Staten Island and now serves as the school's president. "It will be a great night." For Saturday's complete Meadowlands entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA 

WILKES-BARRE, PA - The Somebeachsomewhere mare Skinny Dipper, who dead-heated for the win in her last harness racing outing, again put the photo-finish camera to work at the end of the $17,500 distaff pacing feature Tuesday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono - and this time the picture showed Skinny Dipper an outright winner by a neck in 1:51. Driver Eric Carlson had secured the lead with Skinny Dipper before the 27.1 quarter, then got a breather to the half in 56.1, with Juxta Cowgirl tucked in just behind the frontstepper. Positions remained unchanged at the 1:23.2 3/4s (favored OK Heavenly couldn't make enough of a dent first-over before fading), and in the stretch Carlson got his mare to finish out her last half in 54.4, holding off the charge of the potential pocket rocket "Cowgirl" in the close finish. This was the third win in the last four starts for Skinny Dipper, despite her stepping up in class with every trip to the gate. She is trained by Ross Croghan for the Let It Ride Stable Inc., and she now has earned $263,344. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

Columbus, MN - The Sunday evening (July 1) harness racing program at Running Aces featured the $13,000 Open handicap Pace for horses & geldings, with a deeply talented field of 8 squaring off behind the gate.   Last week's winner Firedrake (Nick Roland) charged hard from the gate to an early lead, but was quickly confronted by Hawk's Red Chief(Dean Magee), with Bestinthebusiness (James Yoder) dropping in third and Stevensville (Rick Magee) floating away in fourth. Hawk's Red Chief had the call at the 27.1 quarter, but Stevensville got out and rolling just before the 3/8 juncture and quickly paced to the front of affairs, to register the half in 56.4.   Besinthebusiness was sent first-over and created the outer flow down the backside, with Bettor's Promise (Williams Hernandez) second-over and To The Limit (Steve Wiseman) in the third-over position.   Stevensville was never headed after taking command, and the outer flow eventually deteriorated, providing racing room for Firedrake as they straightened for home, Firedrake powered home strong, but was unable to catch Stevensville tonight, as he paced home gamely in 28.0 to stop the timer in 1:52.2.   Stevensville is a 7 year old Stallion by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Western Hanover mare Wild West Show. He is owned by Jana Lee Rucker and trained by Rick Magee. Tonight's tally was the third win of the season in 10 starts for the career winner of $526,179.   Also on Sunday night, we hosted the Minnesota-Sired 3 year old trotters. The $10,200 class-A division went to Bringoverthemoney (Rick Magee) in an ultra-impressive gate-to-wire score by 6 3/4 lengths in a lifetime best 1:57.2 for trainer Brian Detgen and owner Jasmine Horvat.   Bringoverthemoney paid $2.80 as the heavy favorite. The $6,800 class-B division went to SB Fine and Dandy (James Yoder) in 1:59, also a new lifetime mark. SB Fine and dandy is owned by Susan Holm-Johansen and Deborah Hofsaess and trained by Ulf Holm-Johansen.   Also of note on Sunday, the classy 10 year old trotting Stallion Tamarind (Gerald Longo) picked up his first win of the season in 3 starts, in a $5,600 conditioned event as he stopped the timer in 1:56.3 to record his 62nd lifetime victory and push his career earnings to $935,344. Tamarind ($2.40) is owned by Set The Pace Racing, LLc and trained by Jenni King.   Drivers Dean Magee and James Yoder each completed a Hat-Trick on the night, with Rick Magee turning in a driving double.   The Tuesday evening (July 2) Late Pick-4 wager is Guaranteed at $7,500.00, and the 20 cent Pick 5 wager has a carryover of $1,601.03. Post Time on Tuesday is 7:00 pm CDT.   by Darin Gagne', for Running Aces  

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