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WILKES-BARRE, PA - Real Fine and Zuluwarriorhanover took their second wins in Pennsylvania Stallion Series competition for three-year-old pacing fillies during their third preliminary at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Sunday, but it was the other divisional winner - first-time StS starter Attention Hanover - who dew most of the attention. The daughte of Somebeachsomewhere, trained by Steve Salerno and co-owned by Salerno in partnership with Dean Casaday, had been entered in the first StS prelim but was scratched sick, and since then had stuck to working her way up the conditioned ranks, taking four of her previous five starts. She then showed she was ready for the Stallion Series group, being backed out of the pocket by driver Eric Carlson to follow Sandy's Beach as that one cleared at the ¾, then outpaced her home by 1½ lengths. The victory helped Attention Hanover's chances towards making her Stallion Series Championship, but it in no way assured it, as Attention Hanover is tied for 13th according to unofficial standings compiled at the end of the stakes racing (the Harness Bureau of the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission is the official keeper of PA-sired competition points). Real Fine and Zuluwarriorhanover now each have two wins and a second in three Stallion Series starts and all but cannot be dislodged from a spot in the Championship. First of the pair to win Sunday was the Bettor's Delight filly Real Fine, who set the pace, got a very stiff challenge from Dark Force on the turn, but regathered in the stretch to post a half-length triumph in 1:53.3 for driver Matt Kakaley, trainer Ron Burke, and Burke Racing Stable LLC, Knox Services Inc, Slaughter Racing Stable LLC, and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Zuluwarriorhanover, another Somebeachsomewhere filly, allowed early traffic to settle then was brushed to the lead by driver Tim Tetrick coming off the first turn and stayed in control from there. At the wire pocketsitter Danikova was 1½ lengths behind the 1:53.2 winner, who is trained by Tom Fanning for owner David Van Wert. A pair of $21,500 events matched fast trotters in the first conducted and classy pacing mares in the second. On the trot, Boffin was forwardly-paced throughout by driver Tim Tetrick after an attempt off the pace snapped a three-race winning streak last time, moved to leading favorite Moonshiner Hanover in the stretch, and proved the better by 1½ lengths while crossing the wire first in 1:53.1. The altered son of Donato Hanover, now a winner of $517,487, is trained by Anette Lorentzon, who is also c-owner with ACL Stuteri AB and Kjell Johansson. Second-over Agent Q had the fractions in her favor (54.2 first half vs. 57.2 back half) in the mares pace, and her sweeping move on the far turn carried her to a stretch lead she would not surrender in the 1:51.4 mile, with Skippin By doing very well late but coming up a half-length shy. The Western Terror mare Agent Q, now an earner of $1,208,870, came out of the box smokin' in 2018, fell off-form and was given a brief respite, and now has come back to win two of her last three for trainer Chris Oakes and owners Crawford Farms LLC, Rochetti Cassar Racing, and Robert Muscara. FINISHING LINES - The largest extant carryover pool in North America horse racing was taken down Saturday night at The Downs, as the Rainbow Pick 5 rewarded the one successful bettor with $321,175.78. The imaginative player had in his ticket two horses paying over $100, Riproy ($117.00) and P L Hercules ($102.00), along with a $35.00 horse in the last race of the bet driven by the six-time defending driving champion at the mountain oval, George Napolitano Jr. With two scratches attached to the winning favorite in the first leg, the official ticket read (1,6,8)/5/2/9/7. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

WILKES-BARRE PA - The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, the newly-announced official name of the northeast Pennsylvania oval known in the industry as Pocono Downs, kicked off its 50th anniversary year of harness racing on Saturday night, with three $15,000 divisions of the Bobby Weiss Series for developing male pacers all going against the form as far as the race winners.   The biggest upset was produced in the first division, with Shadow Margeaux (Larry Stalbaum), who had three third-place finishes in this series last year, benefitting from an overcooked pace over the "good" surface to rally from last at the stretch call and tally in 1:52.4. The Shadow Play gelding, trained by many-time Downs champion Steve Salerno for himself, Bruce Potter, and Edward Bardowski, paid $77.00 to win as the longest shot on the board - with second-longest shot Kolt Power second and third-longest shot Red Pine third.   The second Weiss cut saw the second choice win, but it was a $15.60 second choice, as the Well Said gelding Mojito Hanover (Marcus Miller) was a pocket rocket in a 1:53.1 tally, with the 2-5 Burke Stable entry settling for a 3-5 finish. Jim Campbell harnesses "Mojito" for Fred and Shirley Schwartz, Onda Racing Stable LLC, and Shore Thing Stables LLC.   A two-ply Burke force got some measure of revenge in the third division, but Victory At Last (Matt Kakaley), who held off the first-over YS Lotus in 1:52.4, was in an entry that was not the favorite - he paid $4.00 to win, while YS Lotus was 3-5. Victory At Last, an altered son of Quik Pulse Mindale, is owned by the leading combine in the sport, Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.   The Weiss Series will feature pacing females and trotting males in first division action on Tuesday, while trotting fillies will be in the spotlight Wednesday, as Pocono opens on a three-night-a-week schedule. The top competitors after four preliminary legs come back for a $30,000 divisional Championship.   The feature for overnight horses, a $22,000 pace, rang true to form as the Cambest gelding Blatantly Best (Jim Morrill Jr., $3.80) rallied from second-over to be clear late in 1:51.3. Larry Remmen trains the winner for owner Bradley Grant.   However, Shadow Margeaux was the first of many longshots to report home first on Saturday - races 11-13 consecutively saw One More Miracle ($41.40), Salevster Stallion ($34.40) and Feels Like Magic N ($48.40) handsomely reward their scattered backers.   George Napolitano Jr., going for his fourth straight dash driving title and record ninth local crown, guided home four winners on the opener, with Matt Kakaley, the last horseman other than "George Nap" to be on top here (2011), had three. Two-time defending North American dash champion Ron Wrenn Jr., in his first-ever night of racing at Pocono, had a respectable 10-1-3-1-.300 sulky tally, despite being named on only one horse at the time of the draw.   Jerry Connors

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