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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - The end of the calendar year is less than two months away, and harness racing's biggest equine prize, Horse of the Year, is still up for grabs. Shartin N got nosed out by Mcwicked for the honor a year ago, and Joann Looney-King, who along with her husband Jim King, Jr., trains the 6-year-old daughter of Tintin In America-Bagdarin, is hoping to end the season on a high note at the Meadowlands on Nov. 23 and take home the trophy. "We plan on being there for the TVG Mare Pace," said Joann. "We are going to prep at Dover on Nov. 13 if the race fills. I want (Horse of the Year) so bad, but she has to win. That's what the voters want." Shartin N's main HOTY foe is the talented sophomore trotting colt Greenshoe, who, like Shartin N, tasted Breeders Crown defeat. Will Greenshoe be there on TVG Night? It doesn't look that way. "He probably won't race anymore," said trainer Marcus Melander. "He will go to Hanover now to stand stud." Breeders Crown winners Warrawee Ubeat and Manchego (who will be at the Big M Nov. 8), as well as Bettor's Wish, who leads all harness horses in 2019 earnings with just over $1.4 million, may have a puncher's chance at HOTY. It was announced yesterday by trainer Chris Ryder that Bettor's Wish will be back on the track next year at age 4. THE GREAT EIGHT: There will be eight huge stakes events at the Meadowlands on TVG/Fall Final 4 Night on Nov. 23. Two-year-olds will be in the spotlight in the $470,000 Goldsmith Maid (filly trot), $400,000 Three Diamonds (filly pace), $400,000 Valley Victory (colt trot) and $490,000 Governor's Cup (colt pace) before some of the biggest equine stars in the game will be in action in the TVG Mare Trot (for a purse of $175,000), TVG Mare Pace ($175,000), TVG Open Trot ($350,000) and TVG Open Pace ($350,000). SATURDAY NIGHT'S ALL RIGHT: The action on the track was hot last Saturday at the Big M, as El Ideal (male trot, 1:53.1), Senorita Rita (filly trot, 1:53.2), Marloe Hanover (filly pace, 1:50.3) and Force N Fury (male pace, 1:50.2) were the winners in the four Kindergarten Classic Finals for 2-year-olds. It was also a big night at the windows, as a meet bests were reached in total handle ($2,730,886) as well as the 50-cent Pick-4 pool total ($93,922). A carryover of $19,326 led to a total pool of $127,120 in the 50-cent Pick-5. As always, free program pages for this weekend's $50,000 guaranteed 50-cent Pick-4 are available at playmeadowlands.com and ustrotting.com. The wager has a low 15 percent takeout. HAPPY DAYS: Not only are things well at the Meadowlands, but in the entire harness racing industry as well: The Big M is enjoying the benefits of a purse supplement with increased handle A huge Hambletonian Day, where all-source wagering topped $8 million Two weeks ago, Breeders Crown weekend at Woodbine Mohawk Park saw wagering that exceeded $6.6 million The Standardbred Horse Sale (at Harrisburg, PA) saw two yearlings go for $1 million, and the opening session (on Nov. 4) set a record for average price and saw its gross increase by more then $3 million as compared to last year. AT THE TRACK: DerbyWars will host regular online qualifiers for the World Harness Handicapping Championship every Saturday night. Players can qualify for as little as $22. Complete information is available at DerbyWars.com. ... Every week, card players can get in on the action on "Free Poker Fridays" in the Gallery. Games begin at 7 p.m. ... "Hockey Night" is this Saturday (Nov. 9). Come on out and get an autograph and take photos (starting at 6:30 p.m.) with former players Brian Propp (of the Philadelphia Flyers), Bruce Driver (New Jersey Devils) and Nick Fotiu (New York Rangers). In addition, you could walk away with some great memorabilia. From the Meadowlands Media Department    

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands will present the $1 million TVG Free For All Championships as part of a $2.5 million harness racing card that will include the Fall Freshman Final Four on Saturday, November 23.   Saturday's Breeders Crown brought the TVG legs to their conclusion and the series standings may be accessed via the Meadowlands website.   The TVG series was designed as a year end championship which would provide an opportunity for 3-year-olds to take on older foes, much like the Breeders Cup Classic. This has come to pass in each of the past two seasons with both What The Hill and Tactical Landing adding to their legacy by defeating the best older trotters in the TVG.   This season promises to provide a stage for several accomplished sophomores to engage older foes. The connections of both Greenshoe (Kentucky Futurity) and Warrawee Ubeaut (Breeders Crown) have made it known that they are seriously considering accepting the invitation to challenge their elder rivals.   All of the Breeders Crown winners may be invited to race in the TVG, as well as the winners of the Hambletonian and Oaks and the major 3-year-old Red Mile stakes. This includes stars of the older divisions like Manchego and Caviart Ally whose Breeders Crown wins may result in an invitation to race in the Open division.   Top sophomores Bettor's Wish (Tattersalls), Dancin Lou (Breeders Crown), Best In Show (Meadowlands Pace), Tall Drink Hanover (Mistletoe Shalee), Forbiden Trade (Hambletonian), Gimpanzee (Breeders Crown), When Doves Cry (Hambletonian Oaks), Winndevie (Breeders Crown) and Beautiful Sin (Filly Futurity) have all won qualifying stakes in 2019.   The maximum number of horses accepted to race in the TVG Championship is ten with a possible exception of the acceptance of an invitation by a "foreign-based horse" which would result in eleven horses with one trailer raced at one and one eighth miles.   That invitation was indeed offered to the connections of Bold Eagle after his thrilling success in the Breeders Crown Open Trot. Unfortunately they were unable to accept that offer with Bold Eagle's fall and winter schedule already set for a campaign across Europe.   The conditions "Eligible For Final" section lists the order of eligibility in the event that more than the maximum declare for any TVG Championship.   Nominated horses that start in no fewer than half of the six preliminary legs are guaranteed a final berth, subject to the point standings if more than ten declare.   Next in order, providing there are fewer than ten declared that meet the minimum starts requirement, are the winners of the below stakes who may be extended invitations in the following order of preference until the maximum is met:   TVG OPEN TVG MARES 1. Breeders Crown 3 Year Old Colt Final 1. Breeders Crown Aged Mare Final 2. Breeders Crown Open Final 2. Breeders Crown 3 Year Old Filly Final 3. Hambletonian or Meadowlands Pace 3. Hambletonian Oaks or Mistletoe Shalee 4. Breeders Crown Aged Mare Final 4. Kentucky Filly Futurity/Garnsey Pace 5. Kentucky Futurity Final/Tattersalls Pace   If after these conditions are met there remain open positions in the Final, horses with fewer than the required number of series starts will be accepted in the order of point standings until the field has reached the maximum number of starters allowed.   Horsemen are urged to consider the opportunity to race their eligible stakes winners in the TVG Championship and may contact Racing Secretary Scott Warren (201) 842-5130 with any questions. The Racing Office will be reaching out to those trainers with eligible horses in an attempt to sort out the various possibilities.   The TVG conditions may be accessed on ustrotting.com.   From the Meadowlands Media Department  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - After a nine-week hiatus that began at the conclusion of a highly successful Hambletonian Day, live harness racing returns to the Meadowlands on Friday night (Oct. 11). During October and November, live action will be conducted on Fridays and Saturdays. December will see Thursdays added to the schedule. All live harness programs will have a post time of 7:15 p.m. There will be special racing "doubleheaders" during October as Monmouth Park will conduct turf racing on the Meadowlands' grass course. Racing fans can make it a full day at the Big M on October 11, 12, 18, 25 and 26, as the thoroughbreds will be in action with a 12:30 p.m. post before harness racing in the evening. JUICY STAKES: They'll be plenty of stakes action during the Big M's 2019 Fall Meeting as 2-year-olds will be in action in the Kindergarten Series. Preliminaries are slated for the first three weekends of the meet before four big-money finals - with purses totaling more than $700,000 - take place on Nov. 2. The action then heats up even more on Nov. 16, with eliminations for the Goldsmith Maid (2-year-old filly trot), Three Diamonds (2-year-old filly pace), Valley Victory (2-year-old colt trot) and Governor's Cup (2-year-old colt pace) before the biggest night of the fall takes place one week later with the finals for those four events - with purses in excess of $1.75 million - as well as the finals for four other huge contests, featuring some of the biggest equine stars in the game. The TVG Mare Trot (for a purse of $175,000), TVG Mare Pace ($175,000), TVG Open Trot ($350,000) and TVG Open Pace ($350,000) will also be offered on "Fall Final Four" Night on Nov. 23. Racing fans may recall the 2018 TVG Open Pace, which resulted in a dominant 1:48 score by McWicked to lock up Horse of the Year honors. SUPER SIMULCAST: The stars of every division will be on display at Woodbine at Mohawk Park as the 2019 Breeders Crown will be contested at Canada's top harness track. All Crown events will be simulcast to the Meadowlands. Eliminations will take place on Oct. 18 and 19 with the finals slated for Oct. 25 and 26. FREE POKER FRIDAY: Not only is live racing back, so are "Free Poker Fridays" at the Meadowlands. For those 21 years of age and older, free Texas Hold'em tournaments will be conducted in the Gallery, hosted by World Free Poker. Players can pre-register or walk-up. Games begin at 7 p.m. BET THE NFL, MLB PLAYOFFS: Bet all of the National Football League games as well as the Major League Baseball playoffs at the Big M in the FanDuel Sportsbook. Sit comfortably and watch all the action in the book or head over to Victory Sports Bar, where there are many places to watch the games while taking advantage of the many available drinking and dining options. From the Meadowlands Media Department  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - She's done all she can do. Now, she hopes the Horse of the Year voters are in her corner. Shartin N became the first older pacing female to earn $1 million in a single season by taking the $175,000 TVG Mares Pace in 1:50.3 in a dominant performance over a sloppy track at the Meadowlands Saturday night on the biggest night of racing on the fall calendar, as four TVG Finals as well as the Fall Final Four for 2-year-olds were contested. The 5-year-old daughter of Tintin In America-Bagdarin was used hard into the first turn by driver Tim Tetrick, putting 2-1 second choice Caviart Ally in the pocket. Shartin N was permitted to rate the second fraction in :29.2 as Blue Moon Stride made progress racing first-over, getting within a neck of the eventual winner nearing three-quarters, which was timed in 1:23.2. The 4-5 favorite then turned it on, sprinting clear of Caviart Ally as Blue Moon Stride faded. At the wire, Shartin N was 1¾ lengths clear of a fast-closing Apple Bottom Jeans, who was 55-1 on the tote board. Pure Country was third. "She's been great. It's been a great trip with her," said Richard Poillucci, who owns the horse with Jo Ann Looney-King, wife of trainer Jim King Jr. "It was a little tough in the beginning with (her going off stride) when we got her here but she's just been an incredible mare." "McWicked has been a tremendous horse," said Poillucci when the subject of Horse of the Year was brought up. "I'm just happy that she's done what she's done." Shartin N, who won the Breeders Crown four weeks ago, paid $3.60 as the 4-5 public choice and has won 19-of-24 starts this year, good for earnings of $1,053,236. Earlier in the evening, in the $175,000 TVG Mares Trot, Breeders Crown champion Emoticon Hanover sealed up divisional honors by holding off the late-charging Hannelore Hanover by a neck in 1:52.4. Celebrity Ruth was third. Driver Daniel Dube hustled Emoticon Hanover to the lead in the abbreviated five-horse field with Hannelore Hanover racing right behind. Over a track rated 'good' as heavy rains fell, the moderate fractions of :28, :56.3 and 1:25.4 set the stage for a sprint to the wire. "Everything went well with those fractions," said Dube in the winner's circle. "But I was not sure I had it won because (Hannelore Hanover) is a great horse, but my horse was good to the wire." Emoticon Hanover trotted her final quarter in :27, and it was just enough, as Hannelore Hanover - who started the year six-for-six but is now six-for-13 - was in tight quarters in mid stretch. Nearing the wire, Ice Attraction started to flatten a bit after grinding toward the leader during the final half-mile, allowing Hannelore enough room for one final surge. But she would come up just short. Trained by Luc Blais, Emoticon Hanover, a 5-year-old daughter of Kadabra-Emmylou Who, returned $4.00 as the even-money favorite. She has now won 22-of-53 lifetime starts and earned $1,454,576 for owners Determination of Montreal. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations    

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - McWicked completely dominated his foes for a third straight stakes start, and in the process, likely wrapped up Horse of the Year honors Saturday night at the Meadowlands after taking the $350,000 TVG Open Pace by 2 lengths over Dealt A Winner in 1:48 over a sloppy track. Filibuster Hanover was third. "He was absolutely awesome," said winning trainer Casie Coleman. "He's been awesome all season long. I was a little worried when Filibuster got to the front and nobody was coming, I thought we might go a little bit slow fractions up front, but he kept rolling along and it set up great." She needn't have been concerned. Sent to the gate as the 1-9 public choice with the heavy rains from earlier in the evening having diminished to a steady drizzle, McWicked, who was an easy winner in the Dan Rooney on Oct. 13 before following that up with a crushing Breeders Crown score two weeks later, was away in third as Filibuster Hanover reached the quarter in :27 and the half in :54.2. Driver Brian Sears activated McWicked, a 7-year-old son of McArdle-Western Sahara, with about three-eighths of a mile to go, moving quickly after the leader, and was just a length to the bad at three-quarters in 1:21.2. McWicked then powerfully, methodically wore down Filibuster Hanover and went on to an easy victory, his 12th in 19 starts this year. His earnings for 2018 stand at $1,575,364, while his lifetime bank account is a gaudy $3,896,876. He's won 34 of 93 starts over his career. As the heavy favorite, McWicked returned $2.20 to his backers. He is owned by the S S G Stables. Coleman explained after McWicked's win in a Big M overnight event last week that the horse will return for his 8-year-old season. "We've had a lot of offers to go to stud, but his owner, Ed James, is loving this and he said McWicked is racing next year." Will McWicked be chosen as Horse of the Year? "I sure hope so," said Coleman. "We'll see what the voters think, so hopefully." In the $350,000 TVG Open Trot, Tactical Landing completed a marvelous 3-year-old season by besting rival sophomore Six Pack as the pair finished 1-2 facing seven older foes. "He's really, really special. I'm so proud of this horse," said winning trainer Jimmy Takter. "I can't praise a horse more than I praise this guy. He's one of a kind." Strong words. But deserving ones. Six Pack, the 8-5 second choice, was away third in the early going before driver Ake Svanstedt brushed the Yonkers Trot and Kentucky Futurity winner to the top at the three-eighths. Sears was patient with 7-5 public choice Tactical Landing, moving the son of Muscle Hill-Southwind Serena off the rail from fifth at the half. Tactical Landing chipped away at Six Pack's lead until the duo were on even terms at three-quarters. They went at it nose-to-nose from there until Tactical Landing powered clear inside the eighth pole, going on to a 2½-length score in 1:51.4. Will Take Charge finished third. "In the beginning, he was a real project," said Takter of Tactical Landing, an $800,000 Lexington Select Sale purchase who earned only $1,500 as a 2-year-old. "He did not have confidence in himself." That would come when Tactical Landing, who paid $4.80 to win, moved into Takter's barn at the start of this year, one during which his prized pupil has won nine-of-14 starts and bankrolled $810,800 for owners The Tactical Landing Stable. Alluding to his impending retirement at the end of the year, Takter wasn't sure what lies ahead for the horse. "It's something we have to decide. I'm going to be out of the picture for most of it. I don't know." A LITTLE MORE: One astute player betting at Pompano (Fla.) Park was the lone winner of the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 and took home $15,488 for surviving nine legs. ... The great Foiled Again finished fourth in his Meadowlands finale. ... All-source handle on the 13-race card was a meet-high $2,764,913. ... Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

Harness racing's top-ranked horses, No. 1 McWicked and No. 2 Shartin N, head to their respective TVG Series championships Saturday at The Meadowlands Racetrack looking to bolster their Horse of the Year credentials while closing out historic seasons. The Meadowlands hosts four TVG Series finals Saturday, with events also for male and female trotters, and four stakes races for 2-year-olds - the Governor's Cup for colt and gelding pacers, Valley Victory for colt and gelding trotters, Three Diamonds for filly pacers, and Goldsmith Maid for filly trotters. McWicked faces six foes in the $350,000 TVG Series final for male pacers. He starts from post one with Brian Sears driving for trainer Casie Coleman. Shartin N meets seven rivals in the $175,000 TVG Series final for female pacers. She also starts from post one, with Tim Tetrick at the lines for trainer Jim King Jr. Shartin N, who has won 18 of 23 races this year, has already set the record for single-season earnings by an older female pacer, with $968,361, and is attempting to become the first pacing mare to reach $1 million. The New Zealand-bred 5-year-old is owned by Richard Poillucci and Jo Ann Looney-King. McWicked has won 11 of 18 races and earned $1.40 million in 2018. The 7-year-old stallion leads all horses in North America in purses and will be the first horse older than the age of 5 to finish atop the annual money standings since 7-year-old trotter Savoir in 1975. He is owned by Ed James' S S G Stables. Last week, McWicked won the five-horse preferred handicap at The Meadowlands by 2-1/4 lengths over Filibuster Hanover in 1:47.3. He brings a four-race win streak to his TVG final. "I couldn't be any happier," Coleman said. "He was off for three weeks and when we drew the five hole in a five-horse field I expected they would go slow fractions trying to get away on him late. When they hit the half in :53.4 I was pretty happy. I wasn't expecting that fast a mile out of him, but he did it real easy. "He came out of it really good. He was feeling good the next day. Everything seems good. Hopefully we can have a little bit of luck with him on Saturday." McWicked, who was a Dan Patch Award-winner at the age of 3, counts the Breeders Crown Open Pace, Ben Franklin Pace, William R. Haughton Memorial, Canadian Pacing Derby, Dan Rooney Invitational, and Allerage Open Pace among his wins this year. Two fourth-place finishes are his only off-the-board results in his 18 starts. If he were named Horse of the Year, McWicked would be the oldest pacer to ever receive the honor. "To think he was going to do what he did this year would be impossible," Coleman said. "I felt confident he would have a big season, but he's made almost $1.5 million and barely missed the top three. In the starts he got beat, he only got beat from the way the trip went. I've never seen anybody as consistent as he's been week in and week out. "It's not like he has easy miles and he's been at the top of his game since the time he started the season. The horse is 7 years old and racing against the best of the best in the open (class) every week. It's fun every time he goes to the gate. As long as he's healthy and sound we're definitely planning to race him next year." Shartin N prepped for her TVG final with a 1:52.2 win in a qualifier Nov. 14 at Dover Downs. She last raced Oct. 27, winning the Breeders Crown Mare Pace. She also brings a four-race win streak to her TVG event. "She qualified really good the other day, very pleasing," King said. "She doesn't seem to mind the time between races. I think she's OK." In addition to the Breeders Crown, Shartin N's victories this year include the Blue Chip Matchmaker Series championship, Roses Are Red, Lady Liberty, Artiscape, Betsy Ross Invitational, Chip Noble Memorial, and Allerage Farms Mare Pace. If she were named Horse of the Year, Shartin N would be the first pacing mare to ever receive the honor. "I think that's a pretty tall order; McWicked is so sharp right now," King said. "A few weeks ago, I thought it was going to be all about (3-year-old trotting filly) Atlanta, but people have short memories. It's really something just to be even considered, to be in the running. She's gone all year since the Matchmaker (beginning in March) and she hasn't missed yet where she didn't have an excuse or real good reason. Every time she didn't win, something went wrong. "There are so few things through the year that didn't make me smile. It's just a thrill to be around one like her and to think you were a part of it. I'd really love to get over that million-dollar mark; that would be something. You never want to see a year like this end, but she's had quite a year. She's just a horse of a different color. She's pretty damn special." For Saturday's complete Meadowlands entries, click here. First-race post time is 7:15 p.m. (EST). by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

This Week: Fall Four and TVG finals, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. and Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit returns to Dover Downs this Wednesday (Nov. 21) for a $35,000 elimination in the Hap Hansen Progress Pace for 3-year-old open pacers. A field of 10 will compete for eight spots in the final slated for Nov. 29. On Saturday night (Nov. 24) Meadowlands Racetrack will host finals in each of the Fall Four events for freshman pacers and trotters and the TVG series for open pacers and trotters. The Fall Four features the 435,900 Valley Victory for 2-year-old male trotters, the $490,000 Goldsmith Maid for 2-year-old filly trotters, the $469,300 Governor's Cup for 2-year-old male pacers and the $391,250 Three Diamonds for 2-year-old filly pacers. The TVG finals consist of the $350,000 Open Pace, the $350,000 Open Trot, $175,000 Mare Pace and the $175,000 Mare Trot. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: A pair of longshots in This Is The Plan and The Downtown Bus stole the show in the $193,750 Matron Stakes for 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Thursday (Nov. 15) at Dover Downs, tag-teaming in deep stretch to nose out Jimmy Freight in a 1:49.1 dead heat. This Is The Plan and The Downtown Bus emerged in the final stride to simultaneously nose out Jimmy Freight in a dead heat. Fotowon photo. After Ontario standout Jimmy Freight was tasked with the heavy lifting through strenuous fractions and sternly dismissed the challenge of 4-5 local favorite Lather Up, This Is The Plan ($17.00, Tim Tetrick) and The Downtown Bus ($20.60, Corey Callahan) emerged in the final stride to simultaneously nose out Jimmy Freight in a dead heat in the glamour boys' division of the Matron. Jimmy Freight and driver Scott Zeron let This Is The Plan clear before taking charge midway on the first turn and reeling off a :25.3 initial quarter. A determined advance from Lather Up (Montrell Teague) out of fourth with a circuit to go kept the pace hot through a :54.4 half, but Jimmy Freight remained undeterred with three-eighths to go and shrugged off that rival. Meanwhile, This Is The Plan remained close from the pocket and The Downtown Bus followed the three-wide cover of Breeders Crown winner Dorsoduro Hanover (Matt Kakaley) past three-quarters in 1:22.1. Turning for home, Dorsoduro Hanover stalled and Jimmy Freight was driven out to maintain a two length lead, but it began to shrink in the final sixteenth. This Is The Plan lunged up the open stretch and The Downtown Bus surged widest of all, and they both reached the winning post simultaneously in 1:49.1, a nose better than Jimmy Freight. Dorsoduro Hanover found more in the stretch, but missed by a neck to finish fourth. Ron Burke trains This Is The Plan, a six-time winner by Somebeachsomewhere, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Silva Purnel & Libby, and Larry Karr. Trainer Jeff Gillis co-owns 11-time winner The Downtown Bus with Ellen Ott. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 1,487.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 1,480; 3. David Miller - 1,209.5; 4. Scott Zeron - 724; 5. Andrew McCarthy - 658.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,399.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,170; 3. Tony Alagna - 726.5; 4. Julie Miller - 481; 5. Jim Campbell - 442. Owners: 1. Fashion Farms - 325; 2. Diamond Creek Racing - 294.6; 3. Burke Racing Stable - 293.1; 4. Weaver Bruscemi - 271.6; 5. Bill Donovan - 241.2. Looking ahead: The 2018 Grand Circuit season comes to a close on Nov. 29. Dover Downs will host the final stake of the season in the $260,000 (est.) Hap Hansen Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers. by Paul Ramlow, for The Grand Circuit  

East Rutherford, NJ - On Saturday night The Meadowlands will host the final Grand Circuit races of their 2018 season. The finals for both the TVG Championship and Freshman Fall Final Four will be raced on a card that will boast nearly $3 million in purses.   The $1 million TVG Series was launched in the hope that it would mirror the Breeders Cup Classic where the season's top 3-year-old performers would face older rivals in the season ending battle. The Open Trot Championship will see that concept come to fruition and in a year filled with great performances promises to be the race of the season for the trotting set.   Six Pack and Tactical Landing are the consensus top contenders for year end honors in the sophomore colt trot division and both have been declared for the TVG final, which could well also determine the outcome of that poll.   Six Pace drew an invitation via his world record Kentucky Futurity win for Ake Svanstedt who trains and drives the colt and owns him in partnership with Jeff Gural's Little E; LLC, Stall Kalmer and Lars Berg. He is the fastest 3-year-old trotter in harness racing history via his 1:49.1 Futurity victory and has earned over $1 million on the season.   Tactical Landing (Brian Sears) has lived up to his potential with a magical second half of the season in the Jimmy Takter barn highlighted by an imposing Breeders Crown win for the Tactical Landing Stable which resulted in his TVG invitation. He won his Kentucky Futurity split in his personal best time of 150.2 and has earned more that $600,000.   The TVG will serve as the "rubber match" between the pair as Tactical Landing prevailed in a Hambletonian elimination while Six Pack took the Futurity final over his rival.   Just last season What The Hill used a TVG Championship win to seal the deal for year end honors for the sophomore trotting colt division.   Their assignment is certainly not an easy one as the Championship also contains Yonkers International Trot winner Cruzado Dela Noche and TVG point leader Will Take Charge among a very accomplished field of nine.   Also, in the TVG Mare Pace Championship upset Breeders Crown winner Percy Blue Chip (Matt Kakaley) represent the sophomore ladies after trainer Ron Burke accepted the invitation for his interest as Burke Racing along with partners Weaver Bruscemi, Purnell & Libby and Don Emond. Percy Blue Chip has returned dividends of more than $400,000 since her September purchase for the group.   At the top of the standings for this division is Shartin N (Tim Tetrick) who has dominated the older mare division all season and could become the first older pacing mare to earn over $1 million in a single season in this race for trainer Jim King, Jr and owners Richard Poillucci and Jo Ann Looney-King.   The TVG Open Pacing Championship has SSG Stable's McWicked at the top of the heap points-wise for trainer Casie Coleman and after his scintillating 1:47.3 in the grips win for Sears last Saturday he'll take some beating in the final as he tries to wrap up the Horse of the Year title.   The TVG Open Mare Trot is led by Emoticon Hanover (Dan Dube) in points and performance off her second consecutive Breeders Crown win for trainer Luc Blais and owner Determination. 2017 Horse of the Year Hannelore Hanover makes her return for the Burke barn after a freshening and Ice Attraction is a player for Svanstedt as well.   The $1.8 million Freshman Fall Final Four will send ten to post in each of the four divisions in the final big money Grand Circuit event of the season for the 2-year-olds.   Complete information on the draw will be available later today on The Meadowlands website.   by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The early returns are in, and so far - as the Meadowlands harness racing driver colony is concerned - it's been all Andrew McCarthy, all the time. The 32-year-old native of Australia has 14 wins in just 50 starts through the first five weeks of the 2018-2019 Big M meeting. A pair of not-so-familiar-names - Dexter Dunn and Michael Merton - sit tied in the second spot with nine victories apiece. "The trainers that I drive for," said McCarthy as to why he's done so well to this point. "I've had some nice horses to drive. They make it a heck of a lot easier when you've got the best horse in the race." McCarthy has driven some of the stronger stock at the meeting thus far. He guided Muscle Diamond in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for trotters to a 1:52.2 score on Nov. 2, Escapetothebeach to victory in the $173,800 Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Nov. 3 in 1:51.3 and Caviart Ally to the winner's circle on Nov. 9 in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacing fillies and mares in 1:50.2. "Caviart Ally is really good right now," said McCarthy. "She's at the top of her game heading into the (Nov. 24) TVG final." McCarthy is listed to drive more talented stock during the upcoming race week at the Big M. He will team up once again with Muscle Diamond in Friday night's Preferred Handicap for trotters and will guide New York Sire Stakes champion Reigning Deo in an elimination for the Governor's Cup for 2-year-old colt pacers Saturday. As usual, racing will be conducted on Friday and Saturday with a first race post time of 7:15 p.m. JUMP IN THE POOL: The track's signature wager, the 50-Cent Pick-4, took plenty of green into its pools last weekend (Nov. 9-10). On Friday night, $67,610 was poured into the pot, while Saturday saw $76,382 in action. One Big M wager that continues to pay off well week in and week out is the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10, which returned $4,810 (8 of 10) on Friday and $4,451 (6 of 10) Saturday. Both bets feature low 15 percent take outs. Free track program pages are available at both www.playmeadowlands.com and www.ustrotting.com. FOILED AGAIN COMING TO BIG M: On Saturday, Nov. 24, Foiled Again, the richest Standardbred of all time, will be at the Meadowlands, but instead of racing, he'll be visiting with all of his fans. The veteran superstar will be posing for selfies in the Backyard during the live card. In addition, there will also be a special commemorative Foiled Again poster giveaway to all guests, which is available at the Players Club Desk beginning at 6 p.m. Foiled Again's visit comes on a huge night of racing, as the Big M will host both the Fall Final Four and TVG finals that evening. TWO PAIR A STRONG HAND: Last Saturday, driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke teamed up to win four times on the program while McCarthy made four winner's circle visits over the course of the weekend. From the Meadowlands Media Department

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - For harness racing trainer Ron Burke, nights like these are special. And they tend to happen all the time. This year will mark his ninth consecutive national training title, and on the last big stakes night of racing at the Meadowlands in 2017, Burke took two of the four TVG Finals and added another winner in a Fall Final 4 event (Youaremycandygirl in the Three Diamonds) on Saturday night. Burke got the ball rolling with Hannelore Hanover ($2.40 to win) in the TVG Mares Trot. The 5-year-old daughter of Swan For All went a pocket trip behind Emoticon Hanover and rolled right by that foe to record a 2-length win in 1:52.3, raising the possibility of winning a Horse of the Year trophy at season's end. Emoticon Hanover completed the $3.20 exacta. Caprice Hill was third. Winning driver Yannick Gingras, who also drives HOTY contenders Ariana G and Manchego, wasn't saying who he thought should take home the hardware. "I can't answer that question," said Gingras. "All three of them are really special. I just wanted to do my job. Now it's time for the voters to do their job." What The Hill ($12.80) locked up 3-year-old divisional honors by beating older foes in the TVG Open Trot. David Miller put the son of Muscle Hill in a perfect spot, right behind 4-5 favorite Crazy Wow, and when that one weakened in the stretch, went the inside route to the winner's circle. It was three-quarters-of-a-length back to Dayson. Pinkman was third. The time for the mile was 1:51.4, which equaled his lifetime best. "That was my plan (to sit behind Crazy Wow)," said Miller. "He was very strong through the stretch. I'm very proud of him, stepping up to face older and do this." "When he sits in the two hole," said Burke. "He is good as any horse I have and he was concentrated on the horse's head in front of him." Pure Country sat off blinding fractions set by Darlinonthebeach of :27, :54.1 and 1:21 and flew home after vacating the three hole on the far turn to take the TVG Mares Pace by three-quarters-of-a-length in 1:49. The 4-year-daughter of Somebeachsomewhere, who was driven by Mark MacDonald and trained Jimmy Takter, paid $9.00 to win. Bedroomconfessions was second with Darlinonthebeach holding on for third. "She's really game," said MacDonald. "She digs and fights horses all the way to the wire. I know halfway down the stretch she's going to give me that extra gear." Miller was seen in the winner's circle again in the TVG Open Pace, guiding Mach It So ($5.60) to victory by a half-length over a fast-closing McWicked in 1:49.2. All Bets Off finished third. The 7-year-old gelded son of Mach Three lifted his lifetime earnings to just over $2.4 million for trainer Jeff Bamond. "He makes you look good," said Bamond of his prized pupil. "Once he got to the front (just after the quarter), he looked strong. He's done for the year but you'll see him next year. He earned a little vacation." A LITTLE MORE: All source wagering on the 13-race card totaled $2,482,425. ... Racing resumes at the Meadowlands Friday at 7:15 p.m. Thereafter, the track will race Thursday through Saturday for the month of December. By Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

Ron Burke will send What The Hill to face older foes in Saturday's $350,000 TVG Series championship for male trotters at the Meadowlands Racetrack and the harness racing trainer is interested to see how the colt responds. What The Hill received an invitation to the TVG finale because of his win in October's Breeders Crown for 3-year-old male trotters at Hoosier Park. He is the third consecutive Breeders Crown 3-year-old champion to try the TVG, following Bar Hopping and The Bank. Bar Hopping finished fifth last year and The Bank was seventh in 2015. Joining What The Hill in this year's race are Lookslikeachpndale, Mambo Lindy, Pinkman, Crazy Wow, and Dayson. Crazy Wow and Dayson also are trained by Burke. According to the U.S. Trotting Association's Information and Research Department, What The Hill is trying to become the first 3-year-old male trotter in recent history to win against older foes in a series final worth at least $100,000 since Before He Cheats captured the $120,000 Chester Late Closing Series in 2007. The only other instance since 1992 of a 3-year-old trotter winning a race worth at least $100,000 against older horses came on the female side, when filly CR Kay Suzie defeated seven mares in the Breeders Crown at the Delaware County Fairgrounds. "I'm excited to try this," Burke said. "(What The Hill) loves the Meadowlands and it's a short field, which gives him options. It's something neat to try to see where he is and how much he has to improve for next year if he races." The Meadowlands on Saturday also hosts TVG Series championships for female trotters, male pacers and female pacers. In addition, the 13-race card includes the "Fall Final Four" stakes for 2-year-old trotters and pacers. Post time is 7:15 p.m. EST for the night's first race. What The Hill has won six times in his career at the Meadowlands. In his most recent appearance at the track, in August, he finished first in the Hambletonian but was disqualified for interfering with another horse in the stretch. On Saturday, the colt starts from post five with driver David Miller. "The best part is that he's very similar to me to Crazy Wow," Burke said. "That's who I most would compare him to; just how they move and their ability levels. I think right at this time they're very similar." What The Hill has won eight of 17 races this year and earned $774,928 for owners Burke Racing, Our Horse Cents Stables, J&T Silva Stables, and Deo Volente Farms. For his career, the son of Muscle Hill out of K T Cha Cha has won 11 of 31 races and $1.09 million. Two other of this year's Breeders Crown champions will meet in the $175,000 TVG Series final for trotting mares: Hannelore Hanover, who defeated male rivals in the Breeders Crown Open Trot, and Emoticon Hanover, who won the Breeders Crown Mare Trot. Completing the four-horse TVG field are Barn Doll and Caprice Hill. Hannelore Hanover, a 5-year-old mare who also beat the boys in the Maple Leaf Trot, has won nine of 16 races this season and earned $952,879. Emoticon Hanover, a 4-year-old, has won five of 12 starts this year and earned $385,666. Both hold world records, with Hannelore Hanover's mark of 1:49.2 the fastest in history for a female trotter and Emoticon Hanover's 1:50.2 the fastest in history for a female trotter on a five-eighths-mile track. "It's a short field but it's good horses," Burke said. "(Hannelore Hanover) will have to be sharp. She trained great last week, so hopefully she will be good." Burke stakes-winners All Bets Off and Check Six are among the seven horses in the $350,000 TVG Series championship for male pacers. Mach It So, who won this year's William R. Haughton Memorial at the Meadowlands, and stakes-winners McWicked and Dealt A Winner also are in the field. "All Bets Off, to me, needs to win this," Burke said. "If he wins it I think he's aged pacer of the year, so it's a big priority to try to win this race." The $175,000 TVG Series championship for female pacers includes 2016 winner Lady Shadow, this year's Breeders Crown Mare Pace winner Pure Country and stakes-winners Nike Franco N, Blue Moon Stride, Darlinonthebeach, and Bedroomconfessions. Burke's night is not limited to TVG action. Among the remaining horses from his stable in action is Breeders Crown 2-year-old pacing filly champion Youaremycandygirl in the $381,200 Three Diamonds. She will start from post 10 with Yannick Gingras in the sulky. "I hate the draw, but she's a great horse," Burke said. "She will put herself in the right position. Yannick will figure something out from out there." For Saturday's complete Meadowlands entries, click here. Ken Weingartner

For those of you who did not get the chance to see it, here is the photo from Saturday night’s $400,000 TVG FFA Trot Final at the Meadowlands. It’s #1 Obrigado by a nose over #2 Crazy Wow with #8 Lookslikeachpndale third by a head, #6 Resolve fourth by a neck, #3 Bar Hopping fifth and #5 Wind Of The North sixth by three-quarters of a length. It is not often that a Free-For-All Pace or Trot has that close a finish. Centurion ATM was last (eighth) by just two lengths! Thank you to the Meadowlands staff for providing the photo finish picture. Harnesslink Staff

East Rutherford, N.J. - Always B Miki ($2.10) will always be remembered as a harness racing champion. The fastest pacer in the history of harness racing capped his career in triumphant fashion, using a sustained first-over bid to overpower All Bets Off and sprint off to a 1:48.2 victory in the $400,000 TVG Free-For-All Pace on Saturday (November 12) evening at The Meadowlands. David Miller moved Always B Miki first-over out of midfield after patiently stalking sizzling fractions of :25.4 and :54.1, making gradual gains into pacesetter All Bets Off (Matt Kakaley) through the far turn. The 5-year-old Always a Virgin entire pushed to the fore in upper stretch, leaving All Bets Off well in his wake and evading eventual runner-up Mach It So (Tim Tetrick) by 4-1/4 lengths. Melmerby Beach (Marcus Miller) benefitted from the outer flow and saved third with a mild stand-side push over the tiring All Bets Off. Miller and trainer Jimmy Takter had nothing but glowing reports of Always B Miki's curtain call. "When I asked him, he took right off," said Miller. "Jimmy [Takter] has done a great job keeping him good all year, and I tell you what, he's good today as he's been all year. He's an incredible horse; he's a true champion." "It's a wonderful feeling standing here at our home track," said Takter. "He's just a wonderful horse to be around. He's so personable, anybody working with this horse just would love him." "It's nice to quit on the top, too," Takter concluded. "This horse has a future ahead of him, and it's going to be very, very exciting to train his offspring." Always B Miki wraps up his racing career with 30 wins in 53 starts--12 of those wins coming this year--as well as $2,719,368 in earnings for the Bluewood Stable, the Roll the Dice Stable, and Christina Takter. by James Witherite, Meadowlands    

Joe Hurley's run with Always B Miki is coming to an end. On Saturday night, Hurley, who at trackside ran down the final portion of the stretch at Lexington as Always B Miki made harness racing history with his 1:46 all-time record mile a month ago, will watch the 5-year-old pacing stallion he bred and co-owns compete for the final time in his career. Always B Miki, the No. 1-ranked horse in harness racing's Top 10 poll, is the 1-5 morning line favorite in Saturday's $400,000 TVG Free For All Series championship at the Meadowlands Racetrack, where regular driver David Miller will be at the lines for trainer Jimmy Takter. The only other horse in single digit odds in the seven-horse field is Shamballa, at 6-1, for the driver-trainer combo of Scott Zeron and Rick Zeron. The TVG was expected to be the final meeting between Always B Miki and No. 2-ranked Wiggle It Jiggleit, but Wiggle It Jiggleit was not entered because of a minor foot bruise and bout of sickness. Always B Miki and Wiggle It Jiggleit met eight times this season, with Always B Miki winning four times and Wiggle It Jiggleit winning three. Shamballa was an upset winner in the remaining race. For the year, Always B Miki has won 11 of 17 races, finished worse than second only once, and earned $1.29 million for Hurley's Roll The Dice Stable, Bluewood Stable, and Christina Takter. For his career, Always B Miki has won 29 of 52 starts, hit the board a total of 45 times, and banked $2.51 million. In addition to becoming the fastest horse in history, Always B Miki shares the world record of 1:47 for the fastest mile by a horse on a five-eighths-mile track. Always B Miki paced 1:47 on a five-eighths oval on three occasions, an unprecedented feat. He also holds the record of 1:47.1 for the fastest mile ever paced in Canada. "I have mixed emotions, for sure," said the 73-year-old Hurley, who is a prominent defense attorney from Delaware. "It's the ride of a lifetime that you can't possibly fathom unless you've been there. A magic carpet ride type thing and you don't want it to end. "When you see the end coming, you push it out of your mind. The highs that you get where you cry, you run, you scream, you yell, you jump --- things that you never thought you would do --- that are all in the past and you know there will never be another one like him. "Even though there are horses in the future, the way I am, I measure everything against the best experience, so it's going to be quite a fall off a cliff. But it's been fantastic." Always B Miki won 12 of 19 races as a 3-year-old, including the Indiana Sire Stakes championship, before being twice sidelined by injuries that required surgeries and forced him to miss nearly a year of action. He returned in October 2015 and won all four of his races, including the Breeders Crown Open Pace, the remainder of the season. He heads to the TVG championship off a second Breeders Crown Open Pace victory, Oct. 28 at the Meadowlands. Always B Miki's other wins this year include the Ben Franklin Pace, William Haughton Memorial, Jim Ewart Memorial, and Hoosier Pacing Derby. But for Hurley, Always B Miki's 1:46 mile in the Allerage Farms Open Pace at Lexington's Red Mile on Oct. 9 was the pacer's most magical moment. The time eclipsed Cambest's mark of 1:46.1, which was set in a time trial at Springfield, Ill., in 1993. No horse had ever paced faster than 1:46.4 in a race. "What I do is stand by myself, because I get so caught up in things, probably about the sixteenth pole and then literally run with him," Hurley said about his race day ritual with Always B Miki. "I can't keep up, but I begin running toward the finish line. "And in Lexington there was this buzz and it got louder and louder. I couldn't see because of the people in between and they were shouting and shouting. I'm running and I still don't know what's going on. And then I hear somebody say 'world record' and I hear somebody else say '1:46' and then it's just --- well, there's no feeling to describe it. I have a pretty wide vocabulary, but there is no word in the vocabulary to describe the feeling." Always B Miki is a son of Hurley's million-dollar-winning Always A Virgin out of the mare Artstopper. Hurley also bred both of Always B Miki's parents. "I don't know that much about breeding; I got lucky," Hurley said. "I'm an unlucky person, I think, so I was blessed. And now I'm cursed. That's the thing, you've never thought in your wildest dreams about something like this. If I won a sire stakes in all these years, you're happy. But not this elation where your body just goes out of control and you find yourself shouting and screaming at the top of your lungs and jumping up and down. "It's like you're not even in control of yourself. It's like somebody is puppeteering you." Hurley added, referring to his wife who named Always B Miki after her nickname, "She's usually not expressive, but she just goes into another dimension. The smile on her face is ear-to-ear. She jumps up and down. There's nothing like it. I can see the joy and happiness in her face." Always B Miki will be retired to stud duty at Diamond Creek Farm in Pennsylvania following Saturday's TVG final. The run will be completed, but the memories will remain. "The bond between me and him is like it's your child," Hurley said. "I don't get any big pleasure from standing in the winner's circle, but the idea of Miki --- there is a word that you attribute to animals, human emotions --- and I have this irrational sense that he knows that he beat Wiggle It Jiggleit and he's a star. "If someone said I could win Powerball for some ridiculous amount of money or have Miki, it wouldn't even be a question. It would be Miki," Hurley said. "This is like Powerball on steroids." TVG Series finals for male and female trotters plus female pacers are also on Saturday's Meadowlands card. Breeders Crown Mare Trot winner Hannelore Hanover is the 7-5 morning line favorite in the $200,000 TVG for trotting mares while defending series champion Resolve is the 7-5 choice in the TVG for male trotters. Breeders Crown Mare Pace winner Lady Shadow gets the 4-5 nod in the $200,000 TVG for female pacers. Complete entries for the Saturday Meadowlands card may be found at this link. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications

For the second consecutive year, harness raciing trainer Jimmy Takter will send a 3-year-old colt to challenge older rivals in the TVG Free For All Series championship for trotters at the Meadowlands Racetrack. Last season, it was The Bank. This time, it is Bar Hopping, who on Saturday will try to become the first 3-year-old male trotter in recent history to win against older foes in a series final worth at least $100,000. The Bank and Bar Hopping received invitations to the TVG championship as Breeders Crown winners. Bar Hopping won his Crown on Oct. 29 with a stakes-record-equaling 1:51.4 mile at the Big M and followed that victory with a track-record 1:53.4 triumph in the Carl Erskine Trot on Nov. 4 at Indiana's Hoosier Park. For the year, Bar Hopping has won nine of 18 races and earned $1.17 million in purses. He has won six of his last seven starts, including the Breeders Crown, Erskine, and Canadian Trotting Classic. His only setback during that span was a third-place finish in the Kentucky Futurity, where he was beaten by a half-length by Trotting Triple Crown winner Marion Marauder. Bar Hopping and driver Tim Tetrick will start the $400,000 TVG championship from post three and are the 4-1 second choice on the morning line. Resolve, the defending TVG champion from the stable of Ake Svanstedt, is the 7-5 favorite. "He's definitely on top of his game," Tetrick said of Bar Hopping. "Really all year he's raced pretty good. He had a couple hiccups here or there, but the horse is sharp right now. He won really good at Hoosier and he was great in the Breeders Crown." According to the U.S. Trotting Association's Information and Research Department, Bar Hopping is seeking to become the first 3-year-old male trotter in recent history to win against older foes in a series final worth at least $100,000 since Before He Cheats captured the $120,000 Chester Late Closing Series in 2007. The only other instance since 1992 of a 3-year-old trotter winning a race worth at least $100,000 against older horses came on the female side, when filly CR Kay Suzie defeated seven mares in the Breeders Crown at the Delaware County Fairgrounds in Ohio. Last year, The Bank finished seventh in the TVG. Joining Bar Hopping and Resolve in this year's TVG final are Obrigado, Centurion ATM, Crazy Wow, Wind Of The North, JL Cruze, and Lookslikeachpndale. Resolve has won five of 12 races this year and earned $1.31 million. He won the Yonkers International Trot and Maple Leaf and finished second in the Breeders Crown Open Trot and Sweden's Elitlopp. Obrigado is a multiple-stakes-winner and JL Cruze, last year's divisional Dan Patch Award winner, was third in the Breeders Crown. "All we can do is hope for a good trip and hope some of those big boys have a day off," Tetrick said of Bar Hopping's challenge. "Maybe we can end the season on a great note." TVG Series finals for older female trotters plus older male and female pacers are also on Saturday's Meadowlands card. Breeders Crown Mare Trot winner Hannelore Hanover is the 7-5 morning line favorite in the TVG for trotting mares. Bee A Magician is the 2-1 second choice. Always B Miki, the Breeders Crown Open Pace champ and the fastest horse in harness racing history with a 1:46 mile record, is the 1-5 choice in the TVG for older male pacers while Breeders Crown Mare Pace winner Lady Shadow gets the 4-5 nod on the distaff side. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications

This Week: Courageous Lady, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio and Hap Hansen Progress Pace, Dover Downs, Dover, Del. Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit heads to Northfield Park and Dover Downs for the final two Grand Circuit races of the 2015 season. On Friday (Nov. 27), Northfield will host the $120,000 Courageous Lady for 3-year-old filly pacers. This year's Jugette winner, Sassa Hanover, will start from post three and has been named the 2-1 early favorite. Then on Monday (Nov. 30), Dover will feature the $300,000 (est.) final of the Hap Hansen Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers. Wiggle It Jiggleit downed eight rivals for his 21st victory of the season in the $35,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination this past Monday. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: This past Saturday (Nov. 21), Resolve won the $400,000 TVG Free For All Trotting Championship at Meadowlands Racetrack in 1:51.4 for driver/trainer Ake Svanstedt. Resolve won the $400,000 TVG Free For All Trotting Championship in 1:51.4 for driver/trainer Ake Svanstedt. In similar fashion to his win in the final preliminary leg the week before, Resolve moved to the lead shortly after the opening quarter, which was reached in :27 by longshot DW's NY Yank. Once on the lead, Resolve was allowed to relax. The same could not be said for E L Titan who got caught in some traffic down the backstretch and ended up three wide, trotting toward the half-mile. Tim Tetrick guided E L Titan to the first over position after racing three wide, crossing in front of Obrigado with The Bank in the outer flow. But Resolve was able to back the field down with a :29.3 second quarter, reaching the half-mile in :56.3. E L Titan, in the final start of his career, was applying pressure, but Svanstedt had plenty of horse in front of him and Resolve began to edge away, trotting past three-quarters in 1:25. The stretch drive was a mere formality as Resolve began to pour it on, winning by three lengths in the end, trotting a final quarter of :26.4 to complete the mile in 1:51.4. Obrigado held the runner-up position while Flanagan Memory rallied from last to be third. The win was the fourth of the season for Resolve. He finishes his 4-year-old campaign with earnings of $700,938. Resolve is owned by Hans Enggren. A field of six contested the $400,000 TVG Pacing Championship. Off the wings of the gate, five of the six free for all pacers tried to leave for position. The only horse content to watch the action early was Bettor's Edge. That strategy by Matt Kakaley turned out to be the winning one as Bettor's Edge stormed down the center of the track, from dead last, to score a 19-1 upset in 1:50. e field turned for home, the free for all pacers spread across the track and all took their shots. Mach It So found room at the pylons, Foiled Again tried to kick off cover, JK Endofanera reached for the wire and Bettor's Edge was rallying down the center of the track. In the end, Bettor's Edge out-sprinted the talented field to win going away in 1:50. Mach It So rallied up the pylons for the runner-up spot while Foiled Again finished third. Trainer Ron Burke confirmed that both Bettor's Edge and Foiled Again will head to North Carolina for the winter and will return for the 2016 racing season. The win was the 26th in the career of Bettor's Edge, sending his lifetime earnings to nearly $1.8 million. The victory in the TVG Pacing Championship was the third stakes win on the night for trainer Burke, who also captured the $144,000 Continentalvictory with Mission Brief and whose Make Or Miss finished in a dead heat for win in the $489,400 Valley Victory. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farm is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past week's action: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,579; 2. David Miller - 1,299.5; 3. Tim Tetrick - 1,205; 4. Brett Miller - 670; 5. Scott Zeron - 586.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,907; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,605; 3. Tony Alagna - 612.5; 4. Ake Svanstedt - 386; 5. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 385. Owners: 1. Burke Racing - 441.3; 2. Weaver Bruscemi - 369.35; 3. Bamond Racing - 320; 4. Christina Takter - 252.1; 5. George Teague Jr. Inc. - 220. Looking ahead: The 2015 Grand Circuit season will conclude after this weekend; the 2016 Grand Circuit schedule will be released early next year. by Paul Ramlow,forThe Grand Circuit

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