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MANALAPAN, NJ - November 19, 2015 - New Jersey's two harness tracks - the Meadowlands and Freehold Raceway - have been awarded a combined 200 racing dates for 2016. The dates were approved at the New Jersey Racing Commission, meeting on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 in Trenton, NJ. Mark Ford, attending his first Commission meeting as president of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey, advised the Commission that the SBOANJ was reluctantly accepting the Meadowlands dates as an experiment for 2016. "We are concerned about losing dates in January and February and replacing them with September and October dates," Ford said. The Meadowlands requested 90 dates, Fridays and Saturdays only [plus Sunday, May 8], from January 2 through August 6 and from September 9 through December 31 [dark on Saturday, December 24]. Post time is 7 p.m. Freehold received 110 dates, racing January 1 through May 21 plus August 26 and 27, and September 2 through December 10. Racing days will be Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays plus three holiday Mondays - January 18, February 15 and September 5. Dark days are September 1 and November 24. Post time is 12:30 p.m. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - November 17, 2015 - The Board of Directors of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey elected Mark Ford as its president at a reorganization meeting held on Monday, November 16, 2015 at the Association's offices in Manalapan, NJ. Ford, one of the leading trainers in Meadowlands history, owns and operates the Mark Ford Training Center. He fills the position occupied for more than a dozen years by Thomas Luchento. "We made tremendous gains while Tom was president," said Ford. "And we will redouble our efforts to expand racing opportunities in New Jersey, pushing ahead with plans for an expanded gaming referendum in 2016. We thank Tom Luchento for his leadership and know he will continue to contribute as a member of the Board of Directors." In the election of other officers, Mark Mullen was named first vice president, Robert Boni as second vice president, Chris Ryder as third vice president, Alfred Ochsner Jr. as treasurer and Anthony Romano as secretary. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ      

MANALAPAN, NJ - November 3, 2015 - It is rewarding to breed in the Garden State thanks to the newly approved Renaissance Incentive issued by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Effective with the 2016 breeding season, breeders will be incentivized to stand stallions and foal their mares in New Jersey with reimbursements and bonuses. "We are enhancing the mare residency program and adding trotting stallions along with pacing stallions to the successful program we introduced last year," said SBOANJ President Tom Luchento. "These programs will help to bridge the gap until we start to see the potential revenue from expanded gaming. We have every expectation that racetrack-based casinos will be a referendum question in November of 2016." The mare residency program requires that the mare reside in New Jersey for 150 days, be veterinarian-certified as fit for breeding and the foal be made eligible for the New Jersey Sire Stakes or New Jersey Standardbred Development Fund. Payments of up to $500 per mare will be issued to the registered owner after verification of breeding and residency, but not prior to August 1, 2016. The maximum pool for payments is $150,000. The foals of mares bred to New Jersey-based pacing and trotting stallions will be eligible to a 25 percent refund of the paid stud fee, up to a maximum of $1,500, for breedings in 2016. The incentive rebate will be issued on or about August 1, 2017, and the stud fee must be paid by the registered owner prior to that date. It is required that the participating stallions be enrolled in the USTA's STARS Program and the resulting foals be nominated to the New Jersey Sire Stakes. A maximum of $100,000 per gait will be paid out. Among the participating stallions are the trio of Trixton, Rock N Roll Heaven and Lis Mara, all of whom stand at Deo Volente Farms in Flemington, NJ, and Philos Hanover, a son of Cam's Card Shark, who stands at Last Cance Farm in Chesterfield, NJ. The program is also available to any other New Jersey stallions that meet the eligibility requirements. "The Breeders Committee and the SBOANJ has approved what I believe to be a truly forward looking and innovative program to create excitement around the breeding and racing industry in New jersey, said Michael Gulotta, chairman of the Breeders Committee and president of Deo Volente Farms. "The cash breeding incentives will make standing stallions in New Jersey even more attractive. As the odds of a November 2016 referendum for casino gaming in Northern New Jersey are improving by the day, it is highly likely that we will see larger purses in the future for New Jersey-sired horses. Given the circumstances it is both logical and advantageous to be breeding to a New Jersey sire now." Trixton, the 2014 Hambletonian winner, was bred to 140 mares in North America and 120 in Europe during his first season, 2015. The son of Muscle Hill stands for a fee of $12,000 Rock N Roll Heaven, the 2010 Horse of the Year and a son of the late Rocknroll Hanover, has been relocated to New Jersey for a fee of $6,500 and will join Breeders Crown winner Lis Mara, a son of Cambest, who stands for $2,500, as the pacing stallions at Deo Volente. Philos Hanover, the foundation horse of the farm and racing operations of John and Tom Cancelliere, competed from 2006 to 2011, finishing in-the-money in 64 of 110 starts for earnings of $523,246. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 24, 2015 - In a battle to the wire, 2-1 Katies Rocker slipped up the harness racing pylons to nip 1-2 Ideal Rocky in the $30,000 New Jersey Futurity for two-year-old pacers, the featured sixth race at Freehold on Saturday, October 24, 2015. Ideal Rocky, winner of the Lou Babic at Freehold and a division of the International Stallion Stakes at the Red Mile, took the lead from Katies Rocker before the half and was leading well into the stretch. But then Jim Marohn Jr. moved the pocket-sitting Katies Rocker up the pylons to win the tight photo finish by a nose. It was a length and a quarter back to Don'tcallmefrancis in third. The time of the race was 1:55.3. The top three finishers are all sons of the late Rocknroll Hanover. Katies Rocker [$6.80], trained by Jim Campbell, posted his fifth win with two seconds in 10 starts. A winner of divisions of the Reynolds and Bluegrass, he is owned by his breeder, Fashion Farms LLC of New Hope, PA. The victory lifted his earnings to $134,348. The New Jersey Futurity is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 23, 2015 - Demons N Diamonds held off SS Poseidon to win the $25,000 New Jersey Futurity for harness racing three-year-old trotters on Friday, October 23, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. One of two fillies in the field of five in the non-wagering race, Demons N Diamonds [Muscle Hill] was a three-quarter length winner over the colt SS Poseidon [Muscle Hill], trotting the mile in 1:58.2. Switchblade Hall [Muscles Yankee] was 18¼ lengths back in third. Daniel Dube was the winning driver for trainer John McDermott Jr. Demons N Diamonds races in the name of Jonathan Klee Racing of Mineola, NY; Domenic Costanzo of Westbury, NY and Kuhen Racing LLC of Yardley, PA. She was bred by the TLP Stable of Kearny, NJ This year, the filly has six wins, two seconds and two thirds from 20 starts for earnings of $60,080. Lifetime, she has finished in-the-money in 17 of 34 starts, banking $112,619. At two, she won the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final and was second in the NJ Futurity. The New Jersey Futurity is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 22, 2015 - Ideal Rocky, winner of the Lou Babic and a division of the International Stallion Stakes, will face five others in a $30,000 New Jersey Futurity for harness racing two-year-old pacers while Green Acres champion SS Poseidon takes on four in the $25,000 New Jersey Futurity for three-year-old trotters this weekend at Freehold Raceway, site of a "Racing for a Cure" fundraiser. The three-year-old trotters will meet in a non-wagering event at 12:10 p.m. on Friday, October 23, 2015 while the two-year-old pacers have been slotted as race six on Saturday, October 24, 2015. The New Jersey Futurities are sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey and are the final New Jersey-sired stakes of the year. On Saturday, October 24, 2015, Freehold's horsemen will observe Breast Cancer Awareness Month, spearheaded by Lori Urbanski, with donations plus the presentation of blankets for each race. The white and pink coolers, prepared by tack man Lenny Ferrara, were sponsored by: Dennis Watson Stable, Eric Abbatiello Stable, Vinnie Ginsburg Stable, T.K. Racing Stable, Steve Smith Stable, Vinnie Fusco Jr. Stable, Nick Surick Stable, Ivan Llopez Stable, Jim Marshall Stable, Mike Fiumenero Stable, Kerin Warner Stable, Irish Joe Hanney Stable, Theo's Kitchen and The Tack Man. The field for the $25,000 New Jersey Futurity for three-year-old trotters, from the rail out with sire, driver and trainer: SS Poseidon [Muscle Hill], Steve Smith, Erv Miller; Switchblade Hall [Muscles Yankee], Vincent Ginsburg, Ray Schnittker; Demons N Diamonds [Muscle Hill], Daniel Dube, John McDermott Jr.; Shesoneinamillion [Muscles Yankee], Oyvind Hegdal, Oyvind Hegdal, and Mountain Top [Muscle Hill], Irish Joe Hanney, Noel Daley. The co-ed event features three colts and two fillies. The $30,000 New Jersey Futurity for two-year-old pacers, from the rail out with sire, driver, trainer and morning line: Uncle Nicky [Philos Hanover], Jeff Gregory, Thomas Cancelliere, 7-1; Lissilas [Rocknroll Hanover], Jim Marshall III, Larry Remmen, 15-1; Don'tcallmefrancis [Rocknroll Hanover], Irish Joe Haney, Nifty Norman, 3-1; LL Jackpot [Philos Hanover], Ivan Llopez, 5-1; Katies Rocker [Rocknroll Hanover], Jim Marohn Jr., Jim Campbell, 3-1, and Ideal Rocky [Rocknroll Hanover], Marcus Miller, John Butenschoen, 2-1. LL Jackpot is the lone filly in the field. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 20, 2015 - Tom Luchento and Chris Ryder were elected to the Board of Directors of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Ballots were returned by 438 of the 789 members and counted on Monday, October 19, 2015 by the accounting firm of Drucker, Math & Whitman, certified public accountants in North Brunswick, NJ. In the only contested category - driver/trainer - Luchento was re-elected and Ryder was a winning challenger. Incumbent Kelvin Harrison and challenger Nancy Johansson were the others on the ballot. In uncontested categories, Thomas Pontone [owner], Michael Gulotta [breeder] and Dr. Richard Meirs [breeder] were re-elected. "I am grateful for the opportunity to continue on the Board of Directors," said Luchento, who has a dozen years of experience and is the incumbent president and chief executive officer of the SBOANJ. "Both 2015 and 2016 are pivotal years in our efforts to revitalize harness racing in New Jersey. This Board has a full agenda of challenges. "This is no slam dunk, but we are hopeful to get expanded gaming - casinos - at our racetracks to make our purses on par with any in the country," Luchento added. "We continue to work for sports wagering, historic racing and other alternate gaming options just as long as our purses are the beneficiaries." This was Chris Ryder's first bid for a seat on the SBOANJ Board of Directors. "I had been thinking about [running for the Board] for 10 or 12 years, but with my two boys off to college now, I had more time available," said Ryder, 60, who maintains a stable of 25 at Winners in Chesterfield, NJ. "My main concerns are insurance [for horsemen] and the New Jersey-owned and bred races," noted Ryder, a New Jersey resident and horseman since 1989. "I want to listen and be independent, and make the best decisions I can" Ryder added. "I intend to represent the grassroots. I've been there; I'm still there. I want to represent all horsemen. I thank everyone for their support." The Board will hold its re-organization meeting on November 9, 2015. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 16, 2015 - Steed captured the $16,000 New Jersey Futurity for harness racing two-year-old trotting colts and geldings, setting a track record 1:58.4, on Friday, October 16, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. Steed's time for a two-year-old gelded trotter eclipsed the 1:59.2 track record he established on September 17 when he won the Harold Dancer Trot. The Futurity and Dancer are sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Steed, the 5-1 third choice in the featured third race, cut the fractions of 29.1, 59 and 1:28.2, romping to a 12¾-length victory. The 5-2 second choice, Stayin Strong [Muscles Yankee], broke stride on the final turn. Southwind Flash [Muscle Hill], the 1-2 favorite, miscued in the first turn. Driven by Daniel Dube and trained by Richard Johnson, Steed is a son of Muscle Hill - Armbro Emma. He has two wins and three seconds in 10 starts. Bred by Flintlock Farm, he was a $50,000 Harrisburg Sale purchase. He races for TLP Stables of Kearny, NJ; D'Elegance Stable IX of Florham Park, NJ; Vito Cucci of Belmar, NJ and Carmen Iannacone of Lyndhurst, NJ. Steed returned $12.40 to win. The gelding's bankroll grew to $39,657. Threeupthreedown [Muscle Hill] was second with Inukchuk Chuck [Muscles Yankee] third by 13 lengths. Prior to the betting card, Coco Truffles [Muscle Hill] was a two-length winner over Cree [Muscle Hill] in the $15,000 New Jersey Futurity division for two-year-old trotting fillies. It was five and a quarter lengths to Casino Cutie It [Muscles Yankee] in third. Coco Truffles was driven to victory by David Miller for trainer Chuck Sylvester. She covered the mile in 2:01.2, improving her record to two wins, four seconds and two thirds from 11 starts. She has earned $33,673 for the ownership of Four Aces With A Kicker from Williamstown, NJ; Pinstripe Stable of Ponte Vedra, FL; Anthony Perretti of Asbury Park, NJ and Myron Finkelstein of Mountain Lakes, NJ. Ross Stables LLC bred the daughter of Muscle Hill - Pilgrims Truffles. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ    

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 14, 2015 - Stayin Strong, winner of three straight, has been installed as the 8-5 morning line favorite in the third race, the second of two divisions of the New Jersey Futurity for harness racing two-year-old trotters on Friday, October 16, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. Seven colts and geldings will vie for $16,000 on the betting program while five fillies will face off in a $15,000 non-wagering event. The New Jersey Futurity is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Stayin Strong drew outside post seven with Julie Miller turning over the lines to Eric Abbatiello. The son of Muscles Yankee has four wins, a second and two thirds in 10 starts, banking $39,964 for Jason and Douglas Allen of Vincentown, NJ. His four wins came in a sweep of the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres. Taking on Stayin Strong will be Southwind Flash [Muscle Hill], George Brennan, Ron Burke, 5-1; Steed [Muscle Hill], Daniel Dube, Richard Johnson, 9-2; Threeupthreedown [Muscle Hill], Steve Smith, Erv Miller, 7-2; Luv At First Site [Muscles Yankee], Kyle DiBenedetto, Ron Coyne Jr., 12-1; Sigmund [Muscles Yankee], Don Swick, Don Swick, 30-1 and Inukchuk Chuck [Muscles Yankee], Julie Miller, Julie Miller, 5-1. In the filly division, with 12:10 post time, the field includes Casino Cutie It [Muscles Yankee], Vincent Ginsburg, Ray Schnittker; Coco Truffles [Muscle Hill], David Miller, Chuck Sylvester; Cree [Muscle Hill], George Brennan, Trond Smedshammer; HS Baby Grace [Muscle Hill], Ladarrius Whitaker, Ladarrius Whitaker, and Peg O My Heart [Muscle Hill], Christopher Freck, Christopher Freck. Freehold will also host four $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Finals this week. Four three-year-old trotting colts and geldings will go postward prior to the betting card on Thursday. The finalists are: SS Poseidon [Muscle Hill], Steve Smith, Erv Miller; Switchblade Hall [Muscles Yankee], Vincent Ginsburg, Ray Schnittker; Firestop [Muscles Yankee], Syl King Jr., Syl King Jr. and Mountain Top [Muscle Hill], Eric Abbatiello, Noel Daley. Saturday's card features three finals: three-year-old pacing colts and geldings [third race], three-year-old pacing fillies [fifth race] and two-year-old pacing colts and geldings [sixth race]. Prior to driver changes and morning lines, the entrants for the three-year-old colt pace are: Artsmah [Western Ideal], Roland N Rock [Rocknroll Hanover], Edward Teach [Rocknroll Hanover], Devils Cut [Western Ideal] and Rock Of The Ages. The three-year-old pacing fillies are: Crescent City [Rocknroll Hanover], Smart Zone [Rocknroll Hanover], Strut My Stuff [Western Ideal], Quick Aint Fair [Rocknroll Hanover], Lissan [Rocknroll Hanover], Cheyenne Robin [Rocknroll Hanover] and Callacam [Cam's Card Shark]. The two-year-old pacing colt finalists are: Rock N Roll Style [Rocknroll Hanover], Lissilas [Rocknroll Hanover], Perchance To Dream [If I Can Dream], Cedar Hall Dream [If I Can Dream], Nullity [If I Can Dream] and Don'tcallmefrancis [Rocknroll Hanover]. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 17, 2015 - An Ake Svanstedt trainee won the $50,500 Charles I. Smith Trot for three-year-olds, but it was not 2-5 favorite Southwind Mozart, who finished second, but rather 2-1 Crescent Fashion, who scored a length and three-quarters victory in the featured third race on Thursday, September 17, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. In the $35,000 Harold Dancer for two-year-olds, contested prior to the betting card, the Richard Johnson-trained Steed won with Daniel Dube driving. The Smith and the Dancer are both restricted to New Jersey-sired trotters and are sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Crescent Fashion [$6.20], driven by Scott Zeron, rallied first over to pass the fraction-cutting Mountain Top, who hung on for third by seven and a half lengths, and out- brushed Southwind Mozart for his third win in 10 starts this year. All three top finishers are sons of Muscle Hill. The mile was clocked in 1:56.4. Svanstedt's third entrant, Natural Kemp, was fifth. Crescent Fashion has finished in-the-money in six of 13 career starts and banked $88,198 for owners Laura K. Noren of Eastampton, NJ; Order by Stable of Boras, Sweden and Howard Taylor of Philadelphia. PA. Steed, by Muscle Hill, was on the lead from gate-to-wire in the Harold Dancer, crossing the wire a half-length in front in 1:59.2, only two-fifths of a second off the stakes record of 1:59 established in 2010 by Chapter Seven. A pair of Julie Miller trainees battled for second and third with Inukchuck Chuck, driven by Julie Miller, finishing ahead of Stayin Strong, with Eric Abbatiello in the sulky. Both are sons of Muscles Yankee. Steed is owned by the partnership of TLP Stable of Florham Park, NJ; D'Elegance Stable IX of Florham Park, NJ; Vito Cucci of Belmar, NJ and Carmen Iannacone of Lyndhurst, NJ. The gelding picked up his first win in his sixth career outing, with two seconds to his credit, for earnings of $26,347. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ  

MANALAPAN, NJ - September 11, 2015 - Riley's Dream took advantage of an early miscue by Rules Of The Road to win the $30,000 Helen Smith Trot by half a length on Friday, September 11, 2015 at Freehold Raceway. With only four three-year-old New Jersey-sired trotting fillies entered, the race was contested prior to the betting card. The Helen Smith is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey. Riley's Dream [Muscle Hill], driven by Steve Smith and trained by Julie Miller, trotted the mile in 2:00.3. Rules Of The Road [Muscle Hill], with earnings over $200,000 and the runner-up in the Hambletonian Oaks, broke stride at the start and spotted the field more than five lengths but closed well for second. It was a length and a half to Blue Muse [Muscles Yankee] in third and four and a half lengths to Southwind Cartier [Muscle Hill] in fourth. Riley's Dream, unraced at two, has two wins, seven seconds and two thirds in 15 starts this year for earnings of $85,151. His owner-breeders are Jason Allen and Douglas Allen of Vincentown, NJ, and Ronald Allen of Southampton, NJ. The Helen Smith stakes record of 1:56.2 is shared by Marla Bar [2002], Silver Credit [2013] and Cee Bee Yes [2014]. The team of driver Steve Smith and trainer Julie Miller were back in the winner's circle in the eighth race as Southwind Hope won a $7,000 first leg of the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres for two-year-old trotting fillies. Southwind Hope, a daughter of Muscle Hill- Honey Pie, scored a two length victory over Cree [Muscle Hill]. It was 11¼ lengths to Peg O My Heart in third. She trotted the mile in 2:01.2 for her first win with two thirds in five starts. The $52,000 Lexington Selected Sale purchase has banked $9,100. Southwind Hope, bred by Southwind Farm of Pennington, NJ, races for the partnership of the Andy Miller Stable of Millstone, NJ; Little E LLC of New York, NY and Lawrence Dumain of Pine Bush, NY. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

MANALAPAN, NJ – September 11, 2015 – The Bellino Family weighed the risks with the potential rewards and decided to relocate their eight-year-old stallion, Rock N Roll Heaven, to Deo Volente Farm in Flemington, NJ. The 2010 Horse of the Year, owned by Joe and Frank Bellino, stood at Blue Chip Farms in New York for the past four seasons. “The Bellinos want to help New Jersey because they see that New Jersey is working to help itself,” said Michael J. Gulotta, chief executive officer of Deo Volente Farm.  “I told them all the negatives but also the potential upside.  “Forces are moving in the right direction, and there is a great chance at revitalization in New Jersey,” noted Gulotta, who chairs the Breeders Committee of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey [SBOANJ].  “Like the gentrification of Jersey City, where they took advantage of the natural resources, I think the same thing applies to horse breeding in this state.  I believe that taking the risk associated with being in the business will pay off.  And the greatest returns go to the greatest risk takers.  I think it is a risk but not without its merits.” Gulotta noted that the SBOANJ’s New Jersey Pacing Stallion Breeding Incentive Program played a role in the Bellinos decision.  For the 2015 breeding season, the incentive program offers a rebate of the full advertised stallion fee [up to $2,500 maximum] for New Jersey resident mares and 50 percent of the stallion fee [up to a $1,250 maximum] for non-resident mares. “I’m hopeful that program will be extended and attract more mares to New Jersey,” said Gulotta.  “We need to attract stallions to have a New Jersey program.  If there is no program, we won’t need New Jersey farms.” Joe Bellino and his father, Frank, announced their decision on Thursday after considering several options for moving their stallion "We've been disappointed in his last couple of breeding books,” Joe Bellino told  "Blue Chip tried their best with him, and I know they wanted to keep him, even until the end.” Bellino said that regardless of the money or other issues, he wanted to step up and help New Jersey racing and breeding. “Instead of everybody running away, maybe some people should run to help,” Bellino noted.  “Let's do the right thing.” “Now it is my obligation to make sure the horse’s career is a success,” said Gulotta, whose Deo Volente Farm was honored as New Jersey’s Breeder of the Year in 2014.  “I’ll do everything in my power from marketing to legislation to innovative programs.  I’ve been asked to run for state senate, but I’m having too much fun doing what I’m doing. “Our farm manager, Fidencio Cervantez, has handled some of the top stallions in our industry, including Rock N Roll Heaven's own sire Rocknroll Hanover, in addition to Muscles Yankee, Matt’s Scooter, Artiscape, and others.  And I have Bob Marks to market this horse,” Gulotta added.  “We have a solid team.” Deo Volente’s New Jersey farm stands the trotters Trixton and Wishing Stone along with the pacers World of Rocknroll, Lis Mara and If I Can Dream. Rock N Roll Heaven’s first foals are three year olds this year, led by the fillies Sassa Hanover p, 1:49.4 ($704,002), Band Of Angels p, 1:50 ($350,245) and Divine Caroline p, 1:49.4f ($344,333). For all the latest updates on Rock N Roll Heaven as at the 1st of September 2015 go to Rock N Roll Heaven’s 2016 stud fee will be announced soon. By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

Rules Of The Road, runner up to Wild Honey in the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, faces three rivals in the $30,000 Helen Smith Trot on Friday, September 11, 2015 at the harness racing meeting at Freehold Raceway. With only four entrants, the Helen Smith for New Jersey-sired three-year-old trotting fillies, sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey, will be contested prior to the betting card with a post time of 12:10 p.m. Facing Rules Of The Road, driven by Jason Bartlett for trainer Janice Connor, will be Southwind Cartier [trained and driven by DR Ackerman], Blue Muse [trained and driven by Ake Svanstedt], and Riley's Dream [driven by Steve Smith for trainer Julie Miller]. Blue Muse is by Muscles Yankee and the other three are by Muscle Hill. Rules Of The Road, owned by Arden Homestead of Delhi, NY and Janice Connor of Goshen, NY, has five wins, four seconds and two thirds in 18 starts this year for earnings of $211,235 toward a career total of $244,285. Her wins this year include a division of the Tompkins Stakes at Tioga Downs on August 16 The Helen Smith stakes record of 1:56.2 is shared by Marla Bar [2002], Silver Credit [2013] and Cee Bee Yes [2014]. On the betting card, eight two-year-old trotting fillies, four by Muscles Yankee and four by Muscle Hill, are scheduled in a $7,000 first leg of the New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres. Installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite in the field of eight is Jazebel De Vie by Muscles Yankee. She is set to leave from post two with driver-trainer Chris Ryder. The eighth-race field, from the rail out with driver, trainer and morning line odds: Southwind Hope, Steve Smith, Julie Miller, 9-2; Jazebel De Vie, Chris Ryder, Chris Ryder, 5-2; American Spa, Jim Marshall III, Rick Gillock, 30-1; Cree, Trond Smedshammer, Trond Smedshammer, 3-1; Casino Cutie It, Vincent Ginsburg, Ray Schnittker, 9-2; Peg O My Heart, Christopher Freck, Christopher Freck, 30-1; Energy Bar, Eric Abbatiello, Jonas Czernyson, 4-1 and Heal The World, Marcus Johansson, Nancy Johansson, 30-1. Carol Hodes

Assemblymen Ron Dancer and Rob Clifton are leading an effort to save Showplace Farms, which announced it will be closing on October 1. The facility covers over 150 acres in Millstone Township, and includes racetracks, a therapy swimming pool, paddocks and a blacksmith shop. Showcase Farms opened in 1979 and has been the venue for many of the nation’s most successful race horses and trainers. Dancer and Clifton both represent Millstone Township. "Ron Dancer and I began discussing the future of Showplace Farms as soon as word came out that it would be closing," said Tom Luchento, president of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey, which represents New Jersey’s standardbred horsemen. “We have been exploring a variety of options, with the objective of maintaining the training center, which provides critical stabling and jobs for New Jersey’s horsemen. The loss of Showplace Farms would be a setback to those of us in racing but also to the rural character of Millstone Township and the surrounding community. The SBOANJ will do whatever it can to assist Assemblymen Dancer and Clifton, Howard Schoor and all the others working to preserve Showplace. “Every effort must be made to preserve Showplace Farms for open space and maintain its beautiful landscape,” said Dancer. “We are not only losing over 100 jobs with the Farms closing and the relocation of over 400 horses to out-of-state equine facilities, but we are concerned about the possibility of the grounds being sold for development." "I am encouraged by our initial meeting with the owners representative of Showplace Farms as well as local and state officials to find a way to protect this land. ” The two legislators held an initial meeting last Friday to discuss and formulate an action plan to preserve Showplace Farms’ prime real estate frontage on Route 33 from the threat of development. Dancer and Clifton were joined by Howard Schoor, representing the owners of Showplace Farms, and officials from the state, county and local levels, including: *Patricia Butch (Monmouth County Agricultural Development Committee) *Nancy Grbelja (Monmouth County Save The Horse Committee) *Amanda Brockwell (Monmouth Conservation Foundation). The Monmouth Conservation Foundation, a nonprofit conservation organization, will assist to facilitate the preservation process. “I am encouraged by the support and concern expressed by the stakeholders we met last Friday,” said Clifton. “We all agree that finding a solution that protects the beauty of Showplace Farms and maintains its rural nature is what we’d like to achieve." "Assemblyman Dancer and I understand the importance of this issue to the community and will do everything we can to assist in preserving this as open space.” The stakeholders will meet again this Wednesday, August 19. Ron Dancer

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 29, 2015 - Jacqueline Ingrassia, affectionately known as Lady Jay, is about to break new ground. She and her harness racing and life partner for more than four decades, Frank Ingrassia, will be sending out their first Hambletonian Oaks starter on Saturday night, August 1, 2015 at the Meadowlands Racetrack. Cocoacabana drew post two in the sixth race, the first of two $35,000 elimination races which will whittle down the 16 three-year-old trotting fillies to the 10 finalists who will face off in the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks Final on August 8. "This will be our first Hambletonian Oaks starter," the 68-year-old Allentown, NJ resident explained. "Just to be in it is an honor. To make the final would be icing on the cake." The Ingrassias currently have nine horses in training at White Birch Farm, which is two miles from their home. Three of their trainees, including Cocoacabana, are owned with Peter and Ebby Gerry's Arden Homestead Stable of Delhi, NY; one they own outright and five are for Dr. Donna Franchetti and her husband, Tom Doran. Ingrassia, a member of the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey Board of Directors, is also a District 12 representative of the United States Trotting Association. A versatile horsewoman, she is also involved with the Standardbred Pleasure Horse Organization of New Jersey. Born in Ipswich in Great Britain, she started driving in races in the United States in 1977. She became the first woman driver to win a Triple Crown race when she guided Goalfish to victory in the 2000 Yonkers Trot. She topped the 1,000-victory plateau in 2003. She was a 1999 inductee into the Jersey Shore Sports Hall of Fame. Jacquie Ingrassia will be driving Cocoacabana in the Oaks Elimination if John Campbell opts for the Jimmy Takter-trained Wild Honey, also in the same division. She would be the first woman driver in the Oaks since it debuted in 1971. Cocoacabana is aptly named, being a daughter of Chocolatier-Beachcomber. She has two wins, one second and nine thirds in 21 career starts. This year she has been in-the-money in five of 11 starts, including her first two trips to the winner's circle. She has a bankroll of $40,444 and a mark of 1:53.3, taken in her last start on July 17 at the Meadowlands. Cocoacabana winning at The Meadowlands on the 12th of July "Cocoa had the usual two-year-old issues last year - sickness, sore knees, growth spurts," Ingrassia explained. "We felt she needed time to develop and, hopefully, she is over the worst. She is a Chocolatier and has very pronounced haunches, and also doesn't carry much weight. I'm told this is a trait with them." The Gerrys' Arden Homestead bred the filly in partnership with Tad Egloff's Vieux Carre Farm. "We really liked her at the sale," she said. "I bought her [for $32,000 at Harrisburg], and, subsequently, Peter and Ebby bought 50 percent from me." "We have four nice two-year-old filly trotters, all racing, including Twice a Night [Donato Hanover-Working Girl], whom we co-own with Arden Homestead Stable," Ingrassia noted. "She won a leg of the Stallion Series at Pocono last week and is turning out to be a nice filly. Hopefully, you will see us again in the Oaks next year [with her]. Hope springs eternal!" Following are the elimination fields in post order for the Hambletonian Oaks with listed drivers and trainers: 1 - Lady Winona by Credit Winner -Andy Miller-Julie Miller  2 - Cocoacabana by Chocolatier -John Campbell-Frank Ingrassia  3 - Lock Down Lindy by Lucky Chucky -Tim Tetrick-Tony Alagna  4 - Smexi by Explosive Matter -Corey Callahan-Jimmy Takter  5 - Bright Baby Blues by Andover Hall -David Miller-Bob Stewart  6 - Gatka Hanover by Muscle Massive -Yannick Gingras-Ron Burke  7 - Wild Honey by Cantab Hall -John Campbell-Jimmy Takter  8 - Smokinmombo by Explosive Matter -Aaron Merriman-Christopher Beaver  Race 7 1 - Rules Of The Road by Muscle Hill -Corey Callahan-Janice Connor  2 - Sarcy by Donato Hanover -Johnny Takter-Jimmy Takter  3 - Speak To Me by Muscle Massive -Scott Zeron-Jimmy Takter  4 - Magic Marker by Andover Hall -David Miller-R. Nifty Norman  5 - Katniss by Credit Winner -Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt  6 - Livininthefastlane by Donato Hanover -Andy Miller-Julie Miller  7 - Classical Annie by Andover Hall -Aaron Merriman-Jim Arledge Jr.  8 - Spirit To Win by Cantab Hall -Brett Miller-R. Dustin Jones By Carol Hodes for the SBOANJ

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – July 25, 2015 – Split The House gave harness racing trainer James “Friday” Dean his third Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic victory and Wicked Little Minx overcame post 10 and a first-over trip to win the Thomas D’Altrui Miss New Jersey as the spotlight was on New Jersey-sired three-year-old pacers on Saturday night, July 25, 2015 at the Meadowlands. In the hands of Randy Waples, Split The House [$8.60], a son of Rocknroll Hanover – Shake The Junk, got up for a half-length tally over Revenge Shark [Cam’s Card Shark] while 6-5 favorite Artspeak [Western Ideal], the Dan Patch divisional champion at two, was third by a length and a quarter in the 11th race. The $200,000 New Jersey Classic and the $100,000 Miss New Jersey are sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey.  Friday Dean harnessed previous winners Big Jim in 2011 and Panther Hanover in 2012 “He’s a nice horse with all the parts,” said Waples of Split The House.  “His only flaw was that he was silly behind the gate, But he’s turned the corner [after some equipment changes]. “I just wanted to draft as long as I could [behind Artspeak],” Waples added.  “Then he swelled up and dug in.”  Split The House, bred by Fair Winds Farm of Cream Ridge, NJ, paced the mile in 1:48.3 A $60,000 Harrisburg Sale purchase, Split The House was unraced at two and has now won seven of nine starts, including three straight.  He has banked $162,158 for Ontario owners Scott Horner of Toronto, Peter Milligan of Mississauga and James J. Dean of Guelph. Split The House Wicked Little Minx captured the filly companion race, the Miss New Jersey, the seventh race. “She’s like a big diesel truck,” said winning trainer Nancy Johansson of the Rocknroll Hanover – Beachy Lady filly who was driven to her second win of the year by Brett Miller.  She coasted past Stacia Hanover [Western Ideal], who cut most of the mile.  It was two and a half lengths to 6-5 favorite The Show Returns {Rocknroll Hanover], who had limited room trying to slip up the rail and finished third. Wicked Little Minx [$6.60], a $50,000 Harrisburg Sale purchase by Courant AB of Stockholm, Sweden, improved her record to two wins, one second and three thirds from eight starts this year and 10 of 19 in-the-money lifetime.  Her $109,199 earnings this year lifted her total to $157,234.  She was bred by Perretti Farms of Cream Ridge, NJ. Wicked Little Minx In other racing action, Graceful Vision put forth a sparkling debut, winning a maiden event for two year old filly pacers in 1:52.3.  The 1/2 favorite made a backstretch brush to the lead, dueled around the far turn and sprinted away from the competition to score and impressive maiden-breaking score with Steve Smith in the sulky.  She is owned and trained by Erv Miller. Graceful Vision Sayitall BB was a drop and pop winner, scoring an emphatic 1:50 triumph in the upper level condition event for the pacing mares.  On the heels of a troubled trip, the Breeders Crown winning mare earned a nice confidence building win which could set her up nicely for the Lady Liberty on Hambletonian Day, with eliminations (if necessary) next Saturday night.  Sayitall BB was driven by Joe Bongiorno, one of two wins on the program for him and is trained by Ron Burke who co-owns the mare with Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Sayitall BB The Jackpot Super Hi-5 went unclaimed again on Saturday night and that carryover now stands at $219,579 into the Friday, July 31st racing program. Darin Zoccali

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