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Kentucky Futurity Day showcased North America’s monte racing as six harness racing entrants contested the $10,000 exhibition event Sunday. Therese Lindgren piloted In Nomine Patri to victory with a rallying 2:00.3 win, last quarter in a sharp :27.2. The winner, a six year-old gelded son of Credit Winner-Blue Skies Hanover-Donerail, is trained by Liisa Vatanen, co-owner with American Dream Racing Stable. Pacesetter Chinese Cuisine was a solid second for Tina Duer with Flowing James home third for Tara Hynes. In Nomine Patri Ontario monte action also continued with Western Fair’s pari-mutuel test on October 3rd. The $3,000 purse event went to Lexus Hawkeye (5g Amigo Hall-Lexus Lulu-Angus Hall) and N. Elliott. Radical Dreamer (Marit Valstad)  and Twin B Excalibur (E. Harms) trailed the 2:04.3h winner. Next up in Ontario monte action is October 12 at Leamington. monteamerica.com Thomas H. Hicks

Monte performers were in action Friday evening with the Vernon Downs Monte Series Final contested by seven starters for a purse of $5,700. The race was non-wagering. Tymal Oh So Nice took the lead at the 5/8 mile post and drew off for an easy 13-length score in 2:04s for Heather Reese. The winner, a five year-old gelded son of Striking Sahbra-Tymal Abracadabra-Kadabra is trained by Ronald MacDonald who co-owns with Valeria Blackmore. The victory was his second in six 2014 starts under saddle. Tara Hynes teamed John-michael to be second ahead of My Irish Molly with Jocelyn Lavigne aboard. At Mohawk a $5,000 non-wagering monte event was held with eight contestants. Radical Dreamer with Marit Valstad up and Tragically Shipp with Natalie Elliot in the irons hit the wire together in a dead-heat for win. Radical Dreamer, a solid monte performer this season, is owned by Millard and trainer Ronald O'Neill of Cambridge. Tragically Shipp is trained by Lee Watson for Lynne and David Magee. The next scheduled monte events in Ontario listed below: 9/13 Mohawk 9/20 Flamboro 10/1 Western Fair by Thomas H. Hicks, for MonteAmerica  

John-Michael (6g Dream Vacation-Imatagtoo-Tagliabue) won Tuesday's $2,000 NY State Monte Fair Final at Trumansburg. Reined by Tara Hynes for trainer Michael Miller and owner Terry Miller, John-Michael scored in 2:09.1h over the Karen Isbell trained and ridden Truth In Action with My Irish Molly third for Jocelyn Lavigne in the field of six. At Georgian Downs, their pari-mutuel monte contest for C$3,200 went to a previous monte winner Radical Dreamer (5f Majestic Son-Paidindreams-Royal Strength) with Marit Valstad aboard for trainer and co-owner Ron O'Neill of Cambridge. Well-known breeder/owner Doug Millard of Woodstock is the other co-owner. Radical Dreamer scored in 2:00.4f by a head over Hettie's Honey with Tymal Oh So Nice home third in the nine horse field. C$9,540 was wagered on the monte contest including exactor, superfecta and triactor wagers. by Thomas H. Hicks  

The countdown is on. In just a few days, horses and riders will be competing to capture the first title of the New York Racing Under Saddle Fair Series. The seven race series, which featured six race legs that were held at county fairs across the state, will culminate in a championship final race at Tompkins County Fair in Trumansburg. The series ran throughout the months of July and August, giving participants the opportunity to earn points towards the final. In order to be eligible for the final, horses needed to compete and finish in any two of the six legs. Eleven horses participated in the series with seven qualifying to race in the final. Six of those will be racing for the championship. Entries are as follows and are based on points earned: Vassar Hall to be ridden by Michelle Crawford Kash Now to be ridden by Michelle Miller Truth In Action to be ridden by Karen Isbell My Irish Molly to be ridden by Jocelyn Lavigne John-Michael to be ridden by Tara Hynes Lemon Pepper to be ridden by Jennifer Lowrey Vassar Hall leads the group going into the final race with 75 points. The 10-year-old mare trained by Brett Crawford has won every leg she has participated in. Her first victory of the series was on July 10 at Afton Fair in a time of 2:11.4. She then defended her title at the Otsego County Fair in Morris on July 29. Crawford then continued her winning streak with Vassar Hall at the Chenango County Fair in Norwich on Aug. 5. There, she won the second RUS division, crossing the finish line in 2:07.4. Kash Now is sitting in second on the point list with 51 points. Michelle Miller has ridden the 10-year-old mare to one victory this season, winning in 2:12 at the Seneca County Fair on July 14 in Waterloo. Kash Now, trained by Michael Miller and owned by Lance Diehl, has also taken a second and three thirds in the series.  Truth In Action was ridden to victory by owner and trainer Karen Isbell during the first leg of the series on July 3 at Goshen Historic Track. The 8-year-old gelding took second to Vassar Hall in the second division of the Norwich race. Although Truth In Action only raced in two races, he has earned 35 points and sits third on the point list. My Irish Molly got a late start in the series, but it was a great one. Jocelyn Lavigne rode her to a victory in the first division of the Norwich race. Although the mare only raced in one race, she earned a point and qualification into the final for showing up at Steuben County Fair in Bath, which was cancelled due to rain. Horses that showed up and checked in earned a point and eligibility for the final race.  John-Michael, owned by Terry Miller and trained by Michael Miller, has earned 21 points. The 6-year-old gelding raced in Afton and Norwich, taking second in both with Tara Hynes aboard. He also earned a point for showing up for the race in Bath. Lemon Pepper has also only raced in two legs of the series and has earned five points. The 15-year-old gelding is owned, trained and ridden by Jennifer Lowrey and received one point for finishing in the first leg, three points for placing fourth in the second division in Norwich and one point for showing up at Bath. The RUS NY 2014 Fair Series has a final race purse of $2,000 along with more than $1,500 in prizes from sponsors. In addition to series sponsors Draper Therapies and Horse Quencher, Hawthorne Products donated a gift basket and NY Equine Fitness Center at Cleremont Farms is donating a Race & Recovery package valued at more than $1,250. The R&R package includes three treatments in their equine salt water spa and their hyperbaric chamber -- the only hyperbaric chamber in all of New England. Riders in the final race will also receive gift bags from the sponsors in addition to a pair of riding gloves donated by Big D’s. There will also be a High Point Rider Award presented at the final to the rider who has earned the most points, regardless of horse(s) ridden throughout the series, with points earned for their finish in the final race as well. The current standings of qualified riders are as follows: Michelle Crawford–75, Michelle Miller–50, Karen Isbell-35, Jennifer Lowrey–25 and Tara Hynes–25. Many other sponsors also contributed services and financial support to the series. The series was made possible thanks to the following sponsors: Flagship Sponsor: New York Sire Stakes; Marketing Sponsor: Horsefly Group; Series Sponsors: Draper Therapies, Horse Quencher, Crawford Farms, Hawthorne Products, and Eric Abbatiello Racing. Race sponsors included Barb and Rick Bateman and T&K Harrington, LLC. by C J Millar, for RUS NY

There is just one more leg of the 2014 New York Fair series until the final. The excitement and participation is getting greater as the season nears an end. After a short break, the series picked back up with Michelle Crawford defending her title at the Otsego County Fair in Morris, New York, on July 29. She rode her 10-year-old mare Vassar Hall (the same horse she won with a year ago) to victory in 2:13. Michelle Miller, riding Kash Now, set the pace until about the 3/4 pole and placed second. Jennifer Lowrey and Striking Mystery came across the finish line third. Crawford then continued her winning streak with Vassar Hall at the Chenango County Fair in Norwich, New York. on August. 5. Crawford was coming off a huge a victory at the Meadowlands winning the biggest RUS series in America - The Hambletonian. There, she won the final atop A Penny Earned in 1:57.2. There was so much interest in the Norwich race that horses were split into two RUS divisions. There were four finishers in each race. Crawford won the second NY Fair Series division with Vassar Hall in a time of 2:07.4. Karen Isbell came in behind her on her own Truth in Action. Jocelyn Lavigne took the first division in 2:13.4 with My Irish Molly. Both rider and horse were first-time participants in the series. The horse will need to race in the last leg of the series to qualify for the final. There was a nose-to-nose fight between Tara Hynes on John-Michael and Michelle Miller on Kash Now to see who would take second place in the first Norwich race. The final leg of the series will be held at the Steuben County Fair in Bath, New York on Tuesday, Aug 12.  There will be two RUS divisions thanks to the support of the fair itself putting up purse money. The final will be held at Tompkins County Fair in Trumansburg, New York on August 19.Horses must compete and finish in any two of the six RUS 2014 Series Fair legs to be eligible for the RUS NY 2014 Fair Series Final. Entries for the final race are to be selected based on points earned for finishes in the series qualifying races. Points earned are accrued by horse, regardless of rider in each race. Up to six qualifiers will be eligible for the final race. A High Point Rider Award and a Series Champion Horse will receive gifts from Hawthorne Products in addition to the other national series sponsors. Current Series Points Standings are as follows: Horse Points:     •       Vassar Hall – 75*     •       Kash Now – 50*     •       Truth In Action – 35*     •       My Irish Molly – 25     •       Striking Mystery – 21*     •       John-Michael – 20*     •       Admirable Hanover – 10     •       Lemon Pepper – 5*     •       Magic Cheque – 5     •       E R Anna – 3     •       Conway Cruiser – 2 *Indicates horse has finished in two races, required to be qualified for the final Rider Points:     •       Michelle Crawford – 75*     •       Michelle Miller – 50*     •       Karen Isbell – 35*     •       Jennifer Lowrey – 25*     •       Tara Hynes – 25*     •       Jocelyn Lavigne – 25     •       Vanessa Karlewicz – 10     •       Mary Lu Dolce Conti – 3     •       Brian Connor – 2 *Indicates rider has finished in two races, required to be qualified for high point ride. CJ Millar, Horsefly Group  

Two divisions of the NY RUS Series took place this week at Norwich, NY with the first $500 division going to My Irish Molly with Jocelyn Lavigne in the irons. Trained by Truman Gale, the winner, a nine year-old mare by Psychic Spirit-Fox Valley Blondie-Armbro Charger, scored in 2:13.4h for owner Donn Lewandrowski over John-michael (Tara Hynes up) and Kash Now (Michelle Miller), both of these trained by Michael Miller. The second division went to Vassar Hall in 2:07.4h for Michelle Crawford. This pair covered the last half in 1:02.4 for trainer Brett Crawford, co-owner with Len Wojdyla. The ten year-old mare by Striking Sahbra-Vera Hall-Conway Hall defeated Truth In Action (Karen Isbell) and Magic Cheque (Tara Hynes). Separately, plans moved forward for a monte event at Rosecroft Raceway on October 18. A fund-raising effort is underway spearheaded by rider Tara Hynes. Supporter financial participation is welcome by going to http://www.gofundme.com/c8yw14. All monies raised will go to the purse for the Rosecroft race. Thomas H. Hicks           Renaissance Partners LLC   Thomas H. Hicks, Managing Partner   3508 Sahara Springs Blvd.   Pompano Beach, FL 33069   www.renaissancelc.com   renparlc@gate.net   954-971-3555 Tel FL Office   704-844-0600 Tel NC Office   954-415-6369 Cel   704-845-1176 Fax           Experience > Value, Integrity, Performance       The information above and attached, if any, may contain privileged and confidential information intended only for the use of the person(s) named above. If you are not the intended recipient you are hereby notified that any review, dissemination, distribution and duplication of this communication is strictly prohibited. Please notify the sender by email and destroy all copies of the original message. Thank you.      

The 2014 Hambletonian Monte lineup is set for the Friday evening Meadowlands finale. Ten competitive trotters and riders will face the starter for $27,500 with a 7:35 estimated off-time. Winners in 2014 under saddle include Truth In Action, Tymal Oh So Nice, O U Gus, Take My Picture and Flowing James. Here is the field in post position order: 1. Chinese Cuisine, Tina Duer/Brett Biddle 2. Truth In Action, Karen Isbell/also trainer 3. Bambino Hall, Stephanie Jacobs/Julie Miller 4. Tymal Oh So Nice, Jenny Melander/Ronald MacDonald 5. A Penny Earned, Michelle Crawford/George Ducharme 6. O U Gus, Stephanie Werder/Whitney Richards 7. Take My Picture, Therese Lindgren/Nikolas Drennan 8. Flowing James, Tara Hynes/also trainer 9.Master Pine, Helene Gregory/Julie Miller 10. Blue Boy Yankee, Kristina Smith/Randal Smith Earlier in the week the Morris, NY Fair hosted the fourth leg of the RUS NY Series. Vassar Hall (10m Striking Sahbra-Vera Hall-Conway Hall) took this test in 2:13.4h for Michelle Crawford, trainer and co-owner Brett Crawford along with Len Woydyla. Kash Now (Michelle Miller) and Striking Mystery (Jennifer Lowry) chased the winner home by Thomas H. Hicks, for Monte America

East Rutherford, N.J. - Friday night at the Meadowlands celebrated the remarkable career of Cat Manzi with that Hall Of Famer meeting fans then joining friends and family for a night at the races. On the track, the night featured the eliminations for the top freshman trotting stakes of the 2014 Championship Meet, the Peter Haughton Memorial colt stake and the Merrie Annabelle for the fairer sex. The Peter Haughton required a single elimination of ten colts after three of the top seasonal earners accepted a bye into next week's $355,500 final. The first seven in the official order of finish would move on. Centurion ATM was the 1:54.2 winner here for trainer driver Ake Svanstedt. The SJ's Caviar colt settled in fourth early as his stable-mate Amicus and The Bank took turns on the lead through early splits of 28.2 and 57.2. Ake steered Centurion ATM over into the passing lane as the field trotted 'round the final bend and as he headed The Bank, that one went offstride, leaving the winner to an open length lead. At the wire it was Centurion ATM trotting home in :28 flat to be clear by three and a half lengths over Uncle Lasse with Cruzado Dela Noche third. The winner is co-owned by European interests Courant AB and Knutsson Trotting. Trainer / driver Svanstedt has had a clear impact on the scene this summer, his first in the US after moving his entire operation from Sweden. With his experience in Europe primarily training older horses, Ake has adjusted quickly to the American emphasis on early speed and clearly will be a player throughout the stakes season. The eliminated horses were The Bank, Broken Record and True Blue Stride. Joining the qualifiers for next Saturday's Hambletonian Day final will be Canepa Hanover, Guess Who's Back and Honor And Serve. Lock Down Lindy won the first of two Merrie Annabelle eliminations for the potent Tony Alagna / Scott Zeron combination in a personal best of 1:55. Zeron held the first crop Lucky Chucky filly behind cover from the three eighths forward as race favorite Gatka Hanover cut the mile after working hard to get the lead. Fanning wide in the drive, Lock Down Lindy went by willingly as Zeron rode along confidently through her personal sub 28 final quarter for the half-length score. Gatka Hanover held the place with Love Me Madly third. Lilu Hanover and Wordie Hanover took the final spots for next Saturday's $352,500 final. The winner is owned by Mystical Marker Farms, Crawford Partners, Joe Sbrocco and In The Gym Partners who bought the filly from Love Lockdown for $60,000 last fall in Lexington. The wickedly fast Mission Brief won the second elim in the dominant, front end style she has displayed for the past few weeks, this time in a track record 1:53.2. The Muscle Hill filly has a remarkable turn of foot and can carry that high speed, tacking a 27.3 final stanza on the record mile and was five lengths clear of the field at the wire with driver Gingras saying whoa the whole way. Jolene Jolene was second and Onda Di Mare third while Livininthefastlane and Sarcy both moved up a position into the final by the disqualification of Flirting Filly from fourth for a pylon violation. Mission Brief's dam is Breeders Crown winner Southwind Serena. Trainer Ron Burke as Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, J&T Silva and Our Horse Cents Stables were compelled to pay $150,000 for the filly as a yearling last fall in Kentucky. She certainly looks like a bargain at this point. Yannick reported post-race, "She was much more rateable this week. She's figuring things out and I'm figuring her out. She's got it all." The twelfth race was the $20,000 second leg of the Ima Lula series for mare trotters aged four years and Classic Martine was a courageous winner in 1:51.2. Bee A Magician asserted herself from rail position and insisted on the lead early for Brian Sears, forcing leavers NF Happenstance and Classic Martine to take a tuck toward the 26.4 quarter. Sears was able to give his charge a nice breather in the middle half as Tim Tetrick moved Classic Martine to the outside for a long, uncovered grind. When the two met in mid-stretch, it was Classic Martine with more and she edged clear late, tacking a 26.4 final quarter on the mile, which was a mere fifth of a second from Bee A Magician's world record of a fortnight ago. The winner has now won six of eight starts for earnings of $195,732 and has the five-eighths mile world record of 1:51.2 on her resume this season. She is trained in the Chris Oakes stable for Hauser Bros Racing, Susan Oakes, Conrad Zurich and Ed Gold. The night began with the well-bred three year old trotting colt Royal Ice taking advantage of an absolutely delightful evening to break maiden in a dazzling 1:51.3. Only Hollywood Heyden might be able to intelligently address the topic, but it's fairly safe to say that was the fastest any trotter has ever left the maiden ranks. The meet's leading driver Yannick Gingras was aboard for the first time on the son of Muscle Hill from The Ice Queen and he just went to the front and improved his position to an eventual eight length victory. Trond Smedshammer trains the colt (who may have just become an instant Hambletonian contender) for Marc Goldberg. An added bonus after race two was the second leg of the Racing Under Saddle series with seven trotters facing starter Danny Dale for a $10,000 purse. Stephanie Werder has come from her native Sweden to compete in the series, which culminates with a $28,000 final next Friday and she rode her mount O U Gus to a 1:59.4 win in tonight's race. Stephanie sat just behind the lead of Chinese Cuisine and Tina Duer and was patient when one of last week's winners, Flowing James and Tara Hynes moved swiftly toward the lead and sat quietly until an opening appeared mid-stretch for the win. Live racing resumes tomorrow night at 7:15 with the John Cashman Memorial FFA trot eliminations headlining the card. Find tomorrow's entries, tonight's results and video replays by visiting The Meadowlands website. Darin Zoccali Director of Racing Operations

A competitive group of seven will start Friday in the $10,000 non-wagering second leg of the Hambletonian Monte Series. The race will follow race two on the regular Meadowlands program. 2014 monte winners Flowing James (Tara Hynes), Tymal Oh So Nice (Heather Reese) and Truth In Action (Karen Isbell) lead the lineup. The final is slated for Friday evening of Hambletonian weekend with an estimated purse is $30,000. Flowing James, a nine year-old gelded son of Ilooklikemymom-Flowing Jody-Rule The Wind, took a division of last week's first leg in 2:00, defeating Bambino Hall and Tymal So Nice. Truth In Action finished fourth a week ago, timed in 2:00.4, to another division winner, Take My Picture, that scored in 1:58.1. www.monteamerica.com by Thomas H. Hicks, for Monte America  

Take My Picture (7g Classic Photo-Habits Lady-Muscles Yankee) with Therese Lindgren in the irons for trainer Nikolas Drennan captured the second division of the first leg of the Hambletonian Monte Series at the new Meadowlands in a hotly contested affair. Bred by Status Stables and owned by Joseph and Laurie Davino, the winner scored in a sharp 1:58.1 (last quarter :27.4) to defeat Vernon open trotter A Penny Earned and Michelle Crawford with pacesetter, veteran Master Pine and Helene Gregory home third. Master Pine holds the North American monte record of 1:57.1 taken August 4, 2012. Take My Picture is a career earner of $836,916 with 23 victories in 109 starts (both sulky and monte). The first division went to Flowing James (8g Ilooklikemymom-Flowing Jody-Rule The Wind) and trainer Tara Hynes. This pair scored in 2:00 over Bambino Hall, Stephanie Jacobs aboard, with Tymal So Nice and Heather Reese finishing third. Each division carried a purse of $5,000 and were conducted as non-wagering races after the second and fourth races on the regular card. The Hambletonian Monte Series Final will take place the evening prior to the Hambletonian and will carry an estimated purse of $30,000. by Thomas H. Hicks, for MonteAmerica

The much anticipated first leg of the Hambletonian Monte Series drew 11 entrants and has been split into two divisions, each for a $5,000 purse. The races will be contested as non-wagering events after the second and fourth races on the regular harness racing card. The lineups are shown below (horse, rider, trainer): Division 1 Tymal Oh So Nice, Heather Reese/R. Macdonald Chinese Cuisine, Tina Duer/B. Bittle Flowing James, Tara Hynes also trainer Bambino Hall, Stephanie Jacobs/Julie Miller OU Gus, Whitney Richards also trainer CJ's Crown, Caroline Green/J. Haigh-Bivona Division 2 Blue Boy Yankee, Kristina Smith/R. Smith Take My Picture, Therese Lindgren/N. Drennan Truth In Action, Karen Isbell also trainer Master Pine, Helene Gregory/J. Miller A Penny Earned, Heather Reese/G. Ducharme Be there for the RUS action at the New Meadowlands. monteamerica.com Thomas H. Hicks  

July 14, 2014, Waterloo, NY – The inaugural RUS New York 2014 Fair Series is now well underway with three of the six legs completed. The series kicked off at Goshen Historic Track on July 3, followed by the second leg July 10 at Afton Fair. Seneca County Fair in Waterloo held the third leg on July 14. So far, all the races have been met with enthusiasm from the spectators and fellow horsemen, with many thanks to the support of the New York Sire Stakes and all of the fairs’ race committees and staff members. The race in Afton had 4 finishers and went in a time of 2:11.4, won by Michelle Crawford on Vassar Hall. Second went to John Michael with rider Tara Hynes aboard, followed by Kash Now ridden by Michelle Miller and Striking Mystery with Jennifer Lowrey. The race was also the Frank Tingley Memorial, with a cooler donated to the winner from his family who was in attendance in the winner’s circle to present the prize, alongside CJ Millar of RUS New York, who had prizes from series sponsors Horse Quencher and Draper Therapies. Frank was a huge supporter of RUS, with his wife Lia a regular for RUS exhibitions at Afton fair since 2001 (pictured at left). The Seneca County Fair race meet was Monday, July 14 in Waterloo, New York. The race had 2 starters and went in a time of 2:12.0 with winner Michelle Miller on Kash Now. This officially puts both Michelle and the horse in the lead for horse and rider points, as we gear up for the second half of the series races. Thanks to the addition of some new sponsors, a few purses will be increasing and RUS New York has announced the High Point Rider Award for the rider earning the most points during the season, regardless of the horse or horses they race. Both the High Point Rider Award and the Series Champion Horse will receive gifts from Hawthorne Products in addition to the other national series sponsors. The next race will be held at Otsego County Fair, Morris, NY on Tuesday, July 29. Points earned by finishers count towards their qualification for the final race, as well as for the High Point Rider Award, to be held at Tompkins County Fair in Trumansburg, New York on August 19. For full race conditions and current standings, please visit the RUS New York website (http://rus-newyork.com/2014-fair-series/). by CJ Millar, for RUS NY

Truth In Action (8g Cantab Hall-Cressida Hanover-Mr. Lavec), owned, trained and ridden by Karen Isbell, scored a decisive victory in tonight's $6,000 monte test at Ocean Downs, his second under-saddle win in as many starts. The event took place after the fourth race on the regular card and was sponsored by friends of the Maryland Standardbreds and the Maryland Horse Industry Board. Truth In Action was a winner in 2:04.4h defeating CJ's Crown and Caroline Green by six lengths with Flowing James home third with Tara Hynes aboard. Truth In Action is from the Mr. Lavec mare Cressida Hanover, she dam of three $100,000 plus winners from nine foals, six of those with records of 1:57.4 or better including Hambletonian winner Glidemaster 3, 1:51.1 ($1,968,023), Truth In Action 7, 1:54.4f ($320,810 total of sulky and monte), Global Desire 2, 1:57.1 ($131,287) and the excellent 2014 two year-old Canepa Hanover 2, q1:56.1 ($25,000). www.monteamerica.com by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

On Saturday July 12, at new Meadowlands, Orange Bigi (6f SJ's Caviar-Emerald City-Donerail) qualified in 2:01 for Sofia Fredlund and trainer Joe Hanney. The same day, at Saratoga Harness, a monte/RUS exhibition was staged that drew an eight horse field. The top two finishers were a nose apart in the 2:04.4h contest with Jessie Say More (4g Jailhouse Jessie-Need We Say More-Super Ben Joe) securing the victory for Michelle Crawford and trainer Frank Davis. Tymal Oh So Nice with Heather Reese aboard was second with Admirable Hanover and Jennifer Conner third, ten lengths back. Action continues Sunday July 13th at Ocean Downs with a three horse field battling for a $6,000 purse. The field consists of CJ's Crown (Caroline Green), Flowing James (Tara Hynes) and Truth In Action (Karen Isbell). In Ontario, at Clinton Raceway, their monte event is the first on the regular card with pari-mutuel wagering. Five trotters will contest this event for a purse of $2,200 and it's race #2 on the afternoon program. The field includes Charlie Tuna (B. Kennedy), Twin B Excalibur (E. Harms), Dayplanner (M. Valstad), Radical Dreamer (S. Town) and Shipps Xceptional (J. Fenwick). On Monday July 14 the NY RUS Series continues at Waterloo. Race #5 is a three-horse monte event for a purse of $530 with the field consisting of Kash Now (Michelle Miller), Striking Mystery (Jennifer Lowrey) and John-michael (tba). Rapid Strategy (9g King Conch-Rapid Sahbra-Master Willie) with owner/trainer Lindsey Blackler aboard in this 2:08k score July 5 at Goshen Historic Track on Hall of Fame day. Admirable Hanover and Jennifer Conner finished second. www.monteamerica.com by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com  

2013 leading Monte America (RUS) performers in the United States (horses, riders and trainers based on earnings) are shown below.  Congratulations to all for making the monte season memorable and for setting the stage for future years. The equine leaders were Flex The Muscle and Vassar Hall with three wins each. Ray Schnittker posted three riding wins versus two each for Michelle Crawford and Helene Gregory. Schnittker and Brett Crawford earned three training victories. Horses: Flex The Muscle led the US equine monte competitors with three wins in five starts earning $19,750. Vassar Hall recorded three wins but did not hit the top five money earnings that also included single dash winners Chinese Cuisine ($14,420), Master Pine ($9.250), A Penney Earned ($6,500) and the consistent non-winner Muscolo ($7,004). Other monte winners during the season included Andover America, Admirable Hanover, John-Michael, Motown Dream Girl, First Tail U See, Pointe Of Honour, Fort Valley As, and Sundance Bayama. Riders: Ray Schnittker earned three wins with his trainee Flex The Muscle for earnings of $19,750. Helene Gregory recorded two wins for $14,250 with the other top five money winners being Tina Duer (one win for $14,420), Jenny Melander (one win for $8,520) and Karen Isbell ($7,250 earned with one victory). Other winners included two-time dash winner Michelle Crawford and single dash winners Heather Reese, Tara Hynes, Jennifer Lowery, Ashley Eldred, Jennifer Connor, Therese Lindgren, Melinda Giroso and Mary Dolce-Conti. Trainers: Schnittker also led the trainer category in 2013 with three wins and $19,750. Brett Bittle’s charges earned $11,300 with one win followed by Julie Miller ($9,250, one win), Paul Kelley ($7.004 without a win) and George Ducharme ($6,500, one victory). Other dash winning monte trainers not in the top five money winners were Brett Crawford (3 wins) and single dash winners Henrik Lundell, Jennifer Sabot, Frank Scamporino Jr., Robert Bresnahan, Robert Lounsbury, Daryl Bier, Janice Connor, Ashley Eldred and James Doherty Jr. Our Canadian monte colleagues are listed below based on wins and all events were exhibitions without purses. Horses: Harlequin led the 2013 equine monte performers with three wins and a second in four starts. Other single dash winners were I’ll Be There, Katla, Lady Is A Pirate, Sixth Man and Speedy Desperado. Riders: Riina Rekila posted a category leading four victories in six starts steering Harlequin and Katla to wins. Evelyn Harms, Maggie Jones, Sharleen MacDonald and Emma Jayne Wilson scored one win each. Trainers: Geoff Maltby led the way with three wins in eight starts for a UTRS of .444. Maggie Jones, Doug McIntosh, Anthony Montini, Riina Rekila and Julie Walker recorded one training win each. Thanks to all participants, owners, sponsors and track operators for making 2013 a successful monte campaign and in heightening interest in racing under saddle in North America. Special thanks to USTA’s David Carr for being the diligent scorekeeper and to racetrack photographers for recording the racing action. www.monteamerica.com by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Firing off a fast pace, veteran Flex The Muscle (6m Muscles Yankee-Alix Hall-Conway Hall) with trainer Ray Schnittker aboard stormed home to easily take the $32,800 Hambletonian Monte Final in 1:59.2. The winning stallion is owned by Schnittker, J&T Silva Stable LLC and Arden Homestead Stable and was bred in Indiana by Silver Linden Farms. Now a career winner of over $847,000 and a 27 time winner in 114 total starts, Flex The Muscle was ten lengths back of early pacesetter Point Of Honour ridden by Tara Hynes as she rolled to the half in :57 and three-quarters in 1:28.1. Chinese Cuisine (5g Revenue-Missymandarine-Malabar Man) then closed in and took the lead for Tina Duer before Flex The Muscle rolled by to score by four lengths with Flowing James (8g Ilooklikemymom-Flowing Jody-Rule The Wind) closing for third with Emma Pettersson. The fourth and fifth checks went to Muscolo with Michelle Crawford up and Waldorf Hall handled by Jenny Melander. Flex The Muscle and Ray Schnittker Twelve horses and riders faced starter Danny Dale's starting gate in what was to-date the richest and most prestigious monte event in North America. Thanks to the Meadowlands, the Hambletonian Society and the sponsors (Jeff Gural, William Weaver's Valley High Stable, Ron Burke Racing Stable, Back On Track, White Birch Farm, Blue Chip Farm and Global Graphics) and supporters that made the Hambletonian Monte Series successful. www.monteamerica.com Thomas H. Hicks  

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