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Both Tall Dark Stranger and Party Girl Hill were impressive 1:47.2 winners in their respective Tattersalls Pace divisions at The Red Mile on Sunday. Those two would get all 35 first-place votes with Tall Dark Stranger emerging on top with 21 votes to 14 for Party Girl Hill. Ramona Hill, who made a break in the Kentucky Filly Futurity, dropped to the #3 spot. Perfect Sting moved from #9 to #6 and both Bettor's Wish (#9) and Test Of Faith (#10) made it to the top ten list this week.  Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown Standardbred Poll: Week 14 – 10/13/2020 Rank   Name (First Place Votes)   Age/Gait/Sex   Record   Earnings   Points   Pvs   1   Tall Dark Stranger (21)   3pc   11-10-0-0   $1,177,681   335   1   2   Party Girl Hill (14)   3pf   13-13-0-0   $736,620   325   3   3   Ramona Hill   3tf   9-6-1-1   $915,615   255   2   4   Atlanta   5tm   10-5-3-0   $613,814   228   5   5   Gimpanzee   4th   9-6-1-1   $718,464   147   4   6   Perfect Sting   2pc   8-8-0-0   $304,300   139   9   7   Shartin N   7pm   7-5-2-0   $326,269   120   6   8   Kissin In The Sand   5pm   9-5-1-0   $257,484   104   10   9   Bettor’s Wish   4ph   9-4-1-2   $372,232   73   --   10   Test Of Faith   2pf   9-8-1-0   $500,000   50   --   ALSO: Sorella 49; Amigo Volo 19; Ready For Moni 15; Action Uncle, Tattoo Artist 11; Manchego 9; Donna Soprano 7; Charlie May 5; Southwind Gendry 4; Venerate 3; Cattlewash, Hypnotic AM, Peaky Sneaky, Reflect With Me, Southwind Tyrion, Warrawee Vital 2; Captain Corey, Cuatro De Julio, Love A Good Story, Pemberton 1.

LEXINGTON, KY--The Bettor's Delight-Precocious Beauty colt Tall Dark Stranger demonstrated his dominance over the harness racing glamour boy division again, winning the first of two divisions for the $479,000 Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace on Sunday (Oct. 11) at The Red Mile. Cattlewash crossed to the lead from post 9 before the first turn while Tall Dark Stranger pushed towards the front passing a :27.1 opening quarter. Into the backside Tall Dark Stranger strode uncontested by a :54.1 half and maintained his speed to three-quarters in 1:21.1 as Warrawee Vital ranged first over from third. Warrawee Vital inched closer to Tall Dark Stranger in the stretch but began to bear inside while giving pursuit to the 3-5 favorite, settling for second while Catch The Fire shook loose from a pylon trip for third and Captain Kirk closed for fourth. "Its actually a really nice group of three-year-olds this year so obviously nothing's going to be given to him for free," trainer Nancy Takter said after the race. "I think he makes us think he's working a little bit harder than he actually is for sure. He's just a super-nice colt. I'm actually running out of good things to say about him." Winning his 10th race from 11 starts this season and his 18th from 20 overall, Tall Dark Stranger has amassed $1,895,195 for owners Crawford Farms Racing, Marvin Katz, Caviart Farms and Howard Taylor. James Avritt, Sr. drove the $3.20 winner. Party Girl Hill stepped up to the challenge against the boys and bested her competition to win the second division of the Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace in 1:47.2. No Lou Zing led the field by the quarter in :27 with Party Girl Hill sitting in the pocket. Into the backstretch driver Dexter Dunn pulled Party Girl Hill wide into the backstretch to circle to the lead and eventually cleared No Lou Zing through an accelerated pace to a :53.4 half. From there the Captaintreacherous filly gained separation from her rivals, hitting three-quarters in 1:21. No Lou Zing and Capt Midnight began to roll into the stretch and cut into Party Girl Hill's buffer, but the Chris Ryder trainee kept the late foes at bay to win by a length. Nou Lou Zing finished second with Capt Midnight third and Save Me A Dance well behind in fourth. "Today was the day because it was a mile and we didn't have much to lose," Ryder said after the race on his decision to move Party Girl Hill into open company. "Now we can go against the fillies in the Breeders Crown and just stay with the fillies. It was the last chance we had--we thought she could do it. She is just what she is... she just showed us that she's just a class of her own, and its just an honor to be out with her." Undefeated from 13 starts, Party Girl Hill has accrued $736,620 for owner-breeder Tom Hill. Off the 2-5 favorite, she returned $2.80 to win. By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

The "Big Three" in harness racing's Top 10 poll -- Tall Dark Stranger, Ramona Hill, and Party Girl Hill -- will be in action Sunday (Oct. 11) at The Red Mile, with each looking to add a big win to their  resume. Tall Dark Stranger and Party Girl Hill will compete in separate $239,500 divisions of the Tattersalls Pace for 3-year-olds, with Party Girl Hill attempting to become only the second female pacer in 30 years to beat male foes in a race worth more than $100,000. Ramona Hill, who earlier this season bested the trotting boys in the Hambletonian, faces 11 rivals in the $255,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity for 3-year-old female trotters. Sunday's card also includes the $444,000 Kentucky Futurity, with a field of a dozen 3-year-old male trotters led by morning-line favorite Ready For Moni, two divisions of the Glen Garnsey for 3-year-old filly pacers, and Allerage Farm stakes for older pacers and trotters. Tall Dark Stranger is the 9-5 favorite in the first of the two Tattersalls divisions and will have Yannick Gingras in the sulky. The son of Bettor's Delight-Precocious Beauty has won nine of 10 races this season and $1.05 million for trainer Nancy Takter. His victories include the Meadowlands Pace, North America Cup, and Cane Pace. In his two most recent races, both at Red Mile, he won a division of the Bluegrass Stakes by a half-length over Little Brown Jug winner Captain Barbossa and the Kentucky Sire Stakes championship by a neck over Fortify. Tall Dark Stranger, who has won 17 of 19 career races and $1.77 million, is owned by Crawford Farms Racing, Marvin Katz, Caviart Farms, and Howard Taylor. "He's never one that's going to win by five (lengths), but he just keeps winning," Gingras said. "What else can you ask? You can't ask anymore from that horse. He just goes on the track and does his job. He's not flashy, he's a fighter; he just wants to beat them. He's just a tremendous racehorse. It's going to be hard to find another one like him." Tall Dark Stranger leads the Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown poll with 18 first-place votes and 329 points. Party Girl Hill has the second-most first-place votes, 10, but trails Ramona Hill, who received the remaining seven first-place votes, by two points, 302-300. It is the first time in at least a decade that three horses received at least 300 points. Party Girl Hill, who was unraced at 2, is undefeated in 12 races this year with earnings of $616,870 for breeder/owner Tom Hill and trainer Chris Ryder. Only one 3-year-old filly pacer who was unraced at 2 ever banked more, Yellow Diamond, with $1.31 million in 2009. A daughter of Captaintreacherous-Look Cheap, Party Girl Hill enters her Tattersalls split off a Bluegrass division win by 3-1/4 lengths over Lyons Sentinel in 1:48. She is the 5-2 favorite, with Dexter Dunn driving, from post one. Her other victories this year include the Jugette, where she won her elimination with a 1:49.3 world record for a 3-year-old filly pacer on a half-mile track, as well as the Fan Hanover Stakes and the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship. See You At Peelers is the only pacing filly in the last 30 years to defeat male rivals in a race worth six figures. She won the 2011 Art Rooney Pace. "People have been talking about us (taking on the boys) for a while; I just thought it was the right time to try it," Ryder said. "It'll be on a mile (track) and, obviously, she's done good enough to give it a shot. That kind of goes without saying. She's thriving, she's doing as good as a horse can do. So, now's the time. "She seems to be getting better and better. The Jugette was good and she was tremendous last week. So, here we are." Ramona Hill has won six of eight races this year and earned $915,615. In addition to her stakes-record-equaling 1:50.1 Hambletonian win, her triumphs this season include the Elegantimage Stakes, Del Miller Memorial, and Zweig Memorial for fillies. She has won 12 of 15 career races and $1.32 million. A daughter of Muscle Hill-Lock Down Lindy, she is owned by Brad Grant, breeder Crawford Farms, Robert LeBlanc, and In The Gym Partners. She is trained by Tony Alagna and driven by Andy McCarthy. Ramona Hill enters the Kentucky Filly Futurity off a second-place finish to Ab'sattitudexpress in a Bluegrass division last week. She is the 7-2 second choice behind 3-1 favorite Sorella. Ramona Hill drew post three, Sorella post four. "I know she wasn't quite herself last week, I think she was a little sick, and I'm expecting a much better effort this week," McCarthy said. "In mid-stretch, I could tell she was getting tired and that's not her at all. Usually, that's when she's getting ready to take off. Turn the page on that one. "When she won the Elegantimage, I think she felt as good as she's ever felt. I've got a good draw (Sunday) and I definitely think I've got the best horse in the race, so I've just got to figure it out." Gingras will drive the morning-line favorites in both the Kentucky Filly Futurity and Kentucky Futurity. The Takter-trained Sorella captured a Bluegrass division last week, beating Spoiled Princess and Hypnotic AM both by a nose, and has won seven of 10 races this season with $485,424 in purses. She is ranked No. 7 in the Top 10. "She was really good last week," Gingras said. "It was three tough fillies at the wire and we were lucky to come out on top. It was real close, I had no idea who won the race. "Ramona Hill is the one to beat, for sure, but I think mine is coming into the race good and we're going to go from there. She's got a good post and I think she'll definitely give a good account of herself." Ready For Moni, also trained by Takter, will start the Kentucky Futurity from the second tier's post 11 and is 5-2 on the morning line. Marion Marauder won the 2016 Kentucky Futurity from post 11 to complete a sweep of the Triple Crown. "Of course, you would always rather have your nose on the gate, but it's not the worst spot in the world," Gingras said. "I think we'll get away fairly close and take a shot from there after that. I'd rather have (post) 11 than the outside with the way the race shook out." Ready For Moni has won five of seven races this year and $575,670. He finished second in the Hambletonian but came back to win the Zweig Memorial for colts and geldings and both his elimination and final of the Goodtimes Stakes. A break in the Canadian Trotting Classic halted his win streak. He is ranked No. 8 in the Top 10. "He made a break his last start, so that's not ideal, but before that he was super sharp," Gingras said. "From what I heard, they did a little bit of work on him, changed his shoes and he's really good now. I'll find out on Sunday. I think when he's on his game, he's as good as anybody." Gimpanzee and Atlanta, ranked No. 4 and No. 5, respectively, in the Top 10, meet in the $148,500 Allerage Farms Open Trot. Gimpanzee is 9-5 on the morning line and Atlanta is 2-1. One other horse in the Top 10, Kissin In The Sand, will be in action Sunday at Red Mile. She is the 3-2 favorite in the $72,000 Allerage Farms Mare Pace. Racing begins at 1 p.m. (EDT) Sunday at Red Mile. For complete entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

LEXINGTON, KY--Chris Ryder harness racing trainee Bettor's Wish ground first over into the final turn and withstood a late rush from pocket-popper Captain Crunch to take the second of two divisions of the $540,000 Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace--sponsored by Michelle and Albert Crawford--on Sunday, Oct. 6 at The Red Mile. Captain Crunch led the field to a :26.3 first quarter but settled for the pocket moving up the backstretch as American Mercury brushed from third to the lead past a :55 half. Bettor's Wish, racing fifth, followed that move but raced uncovered upon the lead change into the final turn. The son of Bettor's Delight pressed forward through three-quarters in 1:21.3 and put away American Mercury straightening for the finish. Captain Crunch vacated pocket and rallied inside of Bettor's Wish late but only gave chase from second. Air Force Hanover took third. "I was concerned about Captain Crunch," Chris Ryder said after the race. "He was second last week but he raced well. He made us go, so it was a little anxious absolutely. But we held on. There's really not much to say. [Bettor's Wish] was a nice two-year-old and he's just improved. The time off or whatever from two to three--he's just a faster animal." Co-owned by Chris Ryder with Bella Racing, Fair Island Farm and Bettors Wish Partners, Bettor's Wish won his 16th race from 27 starts, earning $1,561,000. Dexter Dunn, who became the leading driver of the Grand Circuit meeting, piloted the $2.60 winner. Dexter Dunn                               --Lisa photo Dancin Lou lunged inside of 1-9 favorite Southwind Ozzi late in the stretch to take the other division of the Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace. Driver Dexter Dunn dashed Dancin Lou to the lead while U S Captain settled for the pocket moving to a :27 first quarter. Southwind Ozzi, sitting third, soon tipped wide and brushed to the top entering the backside, leading the field past the half in :54.3. Can't Beach That flushed first over from fourth moving into the final turn, tracked by Shake That House, but stalled past three-quarters in 1:23. Southwind Ozzi clung to command as he floated off the pegs through the stretch. Dancin Lou darted through the late opening and slid past the Little Brown Jug winner to stop the clock in 1:49.4. Shake That House kicked off cover for third. "This is a dream come true I just can't believe it," said winning trainer Tahnee Camilleri, an Australian native in her first year training stateside. "I'm in shock--I'm shaking. You normally don't find me tongue tied but, oh my God. I'm just thankful [my owners] decided to give an Aussie girl chasing the American dream a shot. "He really likes the big track and I think he likes the clay surface," Camilleri also said. "He stays like a mother in law so the big track suits him." Bred by Anvil & Lace Farm and owned by David Kryway and 1362313 Ontario Ltd., Dancin Lou won his 10th race from 26 starts, earning $265,859. The Sweet Lou colt bound for the Breeders Crown paid $20.40 to win.   By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY-- With 12 dropping in the entry box Thursday morning, the harness racing draw for the $450,000 Kentucky Futurity Final was conducted during the Thursday (Oct. 3) card at The Red Mile. Off a 1:49.4 mile under wraps in his Bluegrass division, Greenshoe fronts the field of 12. The Father Patrick colt recently surpassed $1 million in earnings for owners Courant Inc., Hans Backe, Lars Granqvist and Morten Langli. He leads a Melander triage into the 127th renewal of the trotting triple crown classic with stablemates Gimpanzee and Green Manalishi S also entering. The draw for the 54th Kentucky Filly Futurity was also conducted. A total of 11 fillies dropped into the box with Hambletonian Oaks winner When Dovescry back to rematch Millies Posession. Below are the fields for the Kentucky Futurity and the Filly Futurity: Race 8 | $450,000 127th Kentucky Futurity Post-Name-Trainer 1-Chin Chin Hall-Richard "Nifty" Norman 2-Marseille-Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt 3-Super Schissel-Per Engblom 4-Greenshoe-Marcus Melander 5-Don't Let'em-Nancy Johansson 6-Gimpanzee-Marcus Melander 7-Mass Fortune K-Norm Parker 8-Green Manalishi S-Marcus Melander 9-Pilot Discretion-Tony Alagna 10-Soul Strong-Ake Svanstedt 11-Goes Down Smooth-Ron Burke 12-Union Forces-Julie Miller Race 6 | $267,000 54th Kentucky Filly Futurity Post-Name-Trainer 1-Weslynn Quest-Christopher Beaver 2-The Ice Dutchess-Nancy Johansson 3-Millies Posession-Jim Campbell 4-When Dovescry-Rene Allard 5-Starita-Joe Holloway 6-Seaside Bliss-Paul Kelley 7-Miss Trixton-Marcus Melander 8-Princess Deo-Lucas Wallin 9-Beautiful Sin-Ake Svanstedt 10-Golden Tricks-Ake Svanstedt 11-Asiago-Per Engblom An eight-race card caps the Grand Circuit fortnight at The Red Mile and also features the Tattersalls Pace and the mare divisions of the Allerage Farms. The closing-day card gets underway with first-race post at 1:00 p.m. (EDT). By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile    

LEXINGTON, KY--Driver Andrew McCarthy sat patiently with Grand Teton while This Is The Plan blazed around The Red Mile and surged by all his competitors in the stretch to take the second of two harness racing divisions for the $225,000 Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace, sponsored by Al & Michelle Crawford, in 1:48.1 on Sunday, Oct. 7. Ideal Feeling circled past This Is The Plan to lead heading through a :26 opening quarter but soon lost the lead as This Is The Plan sprinted back to the top heading to a :53.2 half mile. This Is The Plan widened his lead circling the final turn as Ideal Feeling chased from second and Dorsoduro Hanover advanced gradually from first over into third. Past three-quarters in 1:20.1, This Is The Plan slowed into the stretch and lost the lead to Dorsoduro Hanover sliding by first over. Grand Teton, from third over, came charging through the center of the course after Dorsoduro Hanover and eased past nearing the wire. Odds On Lauderdale, from last, rushed for third while This Is The Plan held fourth. A colt by A Rocknroll Dance, Grand Teton won his third race from 16 starts and his eighth from 28 overall, earning $454,152 for owner Diamond Creek Racing. Jimmy Takter trains the $9.60 winner. American History vaulted off cover and seized victory at the wire to take the other division of the Tattersalls in 1:48.3. Thinkbig Dreambig took the lead with Hayden Hanover in second and Done Well third. Past the quarter in :27.1, Thinkbig Dreambig continued his speed to the half in :54.4 while Courtly Choice, from fourth, tipped first over and supplied cover to Stay Hungry heading into the final turn. Courtly Choice drew closer passing three-quarters in 1:21.2 but stalled into the stretch while Thinkbig Dreambig dashed towards the finish. Stay Hungry moved three wide and American History four wide while Done Well weaved through competition and into contention late. American History had the most speed late to get a neck up on Stay Hungry in second while Done Well edged out Thinkbig Dreambig for third. Returning $17.40 to win, American History won his eighth race from 17 starts this season and his 11th from 21 overall, earning $592,065 for owners Brittany Farms LLC, Marvin Katz and American History Racing. Andrew McCarthy drove the Tony Alagna trainee. By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile  

LEXINGTON, KY -- The final day in the harness racing Grand Circuit meeting at The Red Mile drew 12 sophomore colts to compete in two six-horse eliminations for the $620,000 Kentucky Futurity on Sunday, Oct. 7 while 16 fillies dropped into two eight-horse eliminations for the $320,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity. Elimination one gathers Crystal Fashion, who set a world record winning his Hambletonian elimination, against Tactical Landing, entering off a 1:51.1 lifetime-best performance when winning his division of the Bluegrass Stakes. Crystal Fashion, a Jim Campbell-trained gelding by Cantab Hall, has won nine races from 13 starts this season, including the $253,000 Pennsylvania Sires Stakes championship and the $512,050 Canadian Trotting Classic. Also finishing fourth in the $1,000,000 Hambletonian, the newly-minted millionaire will have Tim Tetrick in the bike from post two for owner Fashion Farms LLC. Tactical Landing, third in the Hambletonian, starts from post six with trainer Jimmy Takter at the reins. The Muscle Hill colt has won five races from nine starts this season, including an elimination for the Hambletonian, and earned $313,600 for The Tactical Landing Stable. Six Pack, the Ake Svanstedt-trained world champion by Muscle Mass, starts from post one in the second Futurity elimination. Owned by Ake Svanstedt inc., Little E LLC, Stall Kalmar Ff and Lars Berg, Six Pack, as well as post-six starter Fiftydallarbill, supplemented into the race for $63,700. Ake Svanstedt will drive the earner of nearly $900,000 as he makes his first start since winning an $86,750 division of New York Sires Stakes (NYSS) on Sept. 11. Fiftydallarbill, trained by William Crone for owner John Barnard, finished third in the Canadian Trotting Classic two starts ago. A Breeders Crown winner at two, he's collected 14 victories in 29 outings and approaches $700,000 in career earnings. Brett Miller gets the drive. Met's Hall, also in the second elimination, starts from post three off a 1:51.2 victory in his Bluegrass split. Also second in the Canadian Trotting Classic and the Hambletonian, the Zweig champion has nine wins from 20 starts and $964,754 in earnings. Andy Miller will sit behind the Cantab Hall colt for trainer Julie Miller and owners Stroy Inc. and Andy Miller Stable Inc. Supergirl Riley leads the first elimination for the Filly Futurity from post four with Marcus Miller driving. The Erv Miller-trained Muscle Mass filly enters on a three-race win streak, most recently taking her Bluegrass division in 1:52.2. A winner of nine races from 23 starts, she's earned $375,763 for owners Paymaq Racing, George Golemes and Harvey Eisman. Elimination two features a matchup between Atlanta, Plunge Blue Chip and Manchego. Atlanta, beating the boys in the Hambletonian, has since been toppled by Manchego (in the $103,360 Casual Breeze) and by Phaetosive (in the $261,800 Elegantimage). The Rick Zeron-trained Chapter Seven filly has won 10 races from 20 starts, earning $889,189 for owners Rick Zeron, Crawford Farms, Holland Racing Stable, Howard Taylor and Brad Grant. Scott Zeron will steer from post three. Plunge Blue Chip, the fastest three-year-old trotter ever with a 1:49.4 win in the Del Miller Memorial, competes from post six with trainer Ake Svanstedt driving. A winner of 15 races from 21 starts, she enters off a seven-length victory in the $225,000 NYSS championship. She has amassed $889,791 in earnings for owners Ake Svanstedt, Blue Chip Bloodstock, Tomas Andersson and Rick Zeron Stables. Accruing over $1.5 million on her card, Manchego enters off a three-length victory in the $172,000 Moni Maker at Hoosier Park. The Jimmy Takter-trained filly by Muscle Hill has won 19 times in 23 tries, including a 1:50 stakes-record performance in the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, and starts from post eight with Yannick Gingras driving for owners Black Horse Racing, John Fielding and Herb Liverman. The top five finishers from each elimination of the filly futurity advance to the $224,000 final while the top five from each elimination for the futurity advance to the $434,000 final. The 53rd renewal of the Filly Futurity is sponsored by the Father Patrick Syndicate and Diamond Creek Farms while the 126th Kentucky Futurity is sponsored by Hunterton Farms, Stoner Manor Inc. and Menhammer Stuteri Ab. Sophomore pacing colts compete on the program in two divisions of the $450,000 Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace, sponsored by Al and Michelle Crawford. Courtly Choice, off a 1:49.4 neck victory in the $436,560 Little Brown Jug final, contests millionaire Stay Hungry in the first division. The Blake MacIntosh-trained Art Major colt has 12 wins from 26 starts and is approaching one-million dollars in earnings. David Miller drives the Meadowlands Pace champ from post three for owners Hutt Racing Stable, Mac & Heim Stables, Daniel Plouffe and Touch Stone Farms. A Breeders Crown winner at two, Stay Hungry starts from post five off a 1:48.2 win in his Bluegrass division. The Tony Alagna-trained Somebeachsomewhere colt has earned $1,239,459 and won 12 races from 22 starts for owners Brad Grant and the Irwin Samelman Estate. Doug McNair will sit in the bike. Adios winner and Jug runner-up Dorsoduro Hanover fronts the second Tattersalls split. The Ron Burke-trained Somebeachsomewhere gelding is nearing one-million dollars in earnings for owners Burke Racing Stable, Jerry and Theresa Silva, Purnel & Libby, Weaver Bruscemi and Wingfield Five. Matt Kakaley drives the winner of 10 races out of 29 starts from post four. The $72,000 Libfeld & Katz Breeding Partnership Allerage Farms Mare Trot, sponsored by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, opens the closing-day card. Broadway Donna, off a victory in the $107,000 Miss Versatility, the Jim Campbell-trained five-year-old mare by Donato Hanover has 22 wins from 43 starts and $1,430,985 in earnings for owner Fashion Farms LLC. David Miller pilots from post four. Winning 15 races from 20 starts this season, Jim King Jr. trainee Shartin N heads the $98,500 Fear The Dragon Allerage Farms Mares Pace, sponsored by Midland Acres. The Kiwi import, with 22 wins total from 33 starts and $847,728 on her card, has bested the mare-pacing division this season including in the $281,200 Roses Are Red, $197,400 Lady Liberty and $161,000 Artiscape Pace. Regular-driver Tim Tetrick will sit at the helms. Caviart Ally, off a 1:51.2 victory in the $196,350 Milton Stakes, races to Shartin N's left flank in post four. The Noel Daley-trained Bettor's Delight mare recently passed the million-dollar plateau for owner Caviart Farms and will have Andrew McCarthy driving. Racing gets underway on closing day with first-race post time slated for 1:00 p.m. (EDT). By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY-- Fear The Dragon stormed down the center of the track to take the second of two harness racing divisions of the $406,000 American Ideal Tattersalls Pace, sponsored by Brittany Stallion Management, in 1:51.2 on Sunday, October 8 at The Red Mile. Positioned fifth, Fear The Dragon sat off a :28.1 quarter set by Art Scene before flushing out cover with Blood Line prior to a :56.1. Filibuster Hanover, sitting the pocket, tipped out of the pocket moving around the final turn, taking over the front from Art Scene at three-quarters in 1:23.3. Filibuster Hanover held command through the stretch. Mac's Jackpot, off a rail trip, circumvented Art Scene as he faltered to rush into contention towards the rail, while Fear The Dragon gained ground widest of all, sprinting by late leader Mac's Jackpot to win. Filibuster Hanover, the 4-5 favorite, held third. Winning his 17th race in 26 starts, Fear The Dragon, by Dragon Again from the Western Ideal mare Armbro Cinnamon, has earned $1,492,782 for owner Emerald Highlands Farm. The Brian Brown trainee, driven by David Miller, returned $4.40 to win. Mike's Z Tam rallied down the center of the track to take the first division of the Tattersalls in 1:52.4. Downbytheseaside, the 3-5 favorite, circled by Ocean Colony to take the lead after a :29.2 opening quarter, progressing to a :57 half before being pressured by stable-mate Mcthriller from first over into the turn. Off three-quarters in 1:25.1, Downbytheseaside began to drift off the rail, while Mike's Z Tam and Miso Fast fanned towards the center of the track to reel in the pacesetter. Mike's Z Tam surged to the front within the final sixteenth, holding off Miso Fast in the final strides while Downbytheseaside chased in third. A three-year-old gelding by Bettor's Delight, from the Western Ideal mare Ideal Observation, Mike's Z Tam, owned by trainer-driver Patrick Lachance along with Z Tam Stables, M&M Harness Racing, and Royal Flush Stables, won his ninth race in 29 starts, collecting $243,656 in earnings. He returned $12.60 to win. Grinding first over, Idyllic Beach powered to a 1:52.2 victory in the $234,000 Glen Garnsey Memorial, sponsored by Diamond Creek Farms. With even-money favorite Blazin Britches breaking before the start, Caviart Ally brushed to the top after a :28.1 quarter, and was later relegated to the pocket after Tequila Monday moved from fourth to take the lead following the half, timed in :55.1. Idyllic Beach, racing from fifth, angled first over moving into the far turn, advancing uncovered towards Tequila Monday through a 1:22.3 third-quarter. Caviart Ally had room to tip off the rail in the stretch, shooting by Tequila Monday as she drifted off the rail. Room opened for Jaye's A Lady to pace up the pylons, and she took a narrow lead before Idyllic Beach slid by to win. Caviart Ally, between horses, finished third, while Blazin Britches recovered from her break to take fourth. Owned by Christina Takter, John Fielding, Brixton Medical Inc., and Marvin Katz, Idyllic Beach, by Somebeachsomewhere from the American Ideal mare Idyllic, won her 12th race in 28 starts, surpassing the $1-million mark in career earnings. Trained by Jimmy Takter and driven by Yannick Gingras, she paid $22.60 to win.   By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY-- Closing day at The Red Mile, headlined by the $600,000 125th renewal of the Kentucky Futurity, features other harness racing sophomore stars competing in two heats of the $240,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity, two divisions of the $406,000 American Ideal Tattersalls Pace, and the $234,000 Glen Garnsey Memorial, as well as older competitors going in the $67,000 Crawford Farms Allerage Farms Mare Trot and the $105,000 Four Roses Allerage Farms Mare Pace, on Sunday, October 8. Elimination one for the Kentucky Futurity, sponsored by Hunterton Farms, Stoner Manor Inc., and Menhammer Stuteri, draws Perfect Spirit, the de facto winner of the 2017 Hambletonian, starting from post eight with trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt at the helms for owner Srf Stable. With $653,919 in earnings and seven wins to his 17-race resume, the Andover Hall colt, from the Kadabra mare Good Common Cents, has raced once since the Hambletonian, finishing second in a $30,000 Simpson Memorial split at Harrah's Philadelphia to Stealth Hanover, who starts from post one in the same elim. What The Hill, disqualified from first in the Hambletonian, goes from post eight in the second elimination with David Miller in the bike for trainer Ron Burke. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Our Horse Cents Stable, Jerry and Theresa Silva Stables, and Deo Volente Farms, the Muscle Hill colt, from the Angus Hall mare K T Cha Cha, exits a sixth-place finish in the Bluegrass after attempting to set a hot pace. He has eight wins on his 25-race record, and $719,612 in earnings, including wins in the Canadian Trotting Classic and Peter Haughton Memorial. Opting to race against the fillies, Ariana G starts from post four in the opening elimination for the Filly Futurity, sponsored by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Winning her Bluegrass division by four-and-a-quarter lengths in 1:52.2, the Muscle Hill filly, out of the Cantab Hall mare Cantab It All, added a 19th win to her 23-start career, earning over $1.5-million for owner-breeders Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Yannick Gingras steers the Jimmy Takter trainee. Takter also sends Thats All Moni, exiting a 1:52.2 win in the Bluegrass, from post one in the second elimination. Winning nine of her 21 starts, the Cantab Hall filly, out of the Pine Chip mare Mom's Millionaire, has accrued $455,914 in earnings for owners Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, and Al Libfeld. Tim Tetrick will drive. After finishing fifth in the second heat of the Little Brown Jug, Downbytheseaside returns to the track in the first division of the Tattersalls Pace, sponsored by Brittany Stallion Management, starting from post one against frosh-champ Huntsville, himself entering from a defeat. Downbytheseaside, a Somebeachsomewhere colt out of the Allamerican Native mare Sprig Hanover, has won 17 races in 28 starts, including the Messenger Stakes and Carl Milstein Memorial, earning over $1.6-million for owners Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, and Diamond Creek Racing. Brian Sears drives from trainer Brian Brown. Huntsville, second to Little Brown Jug-winner Filibuster Hanover in 1:48.4 in a Bluegrass split last week, matches with Downbytheseaside for the first time since the Cane Pace. A winner of 15 races in 25 starts, Huntsville, by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Western Hanover mare Wild West Show, has earned over $1.7-million for owners Ted Gewertz, Steven Arnold, Crawford Farms Racing, and trainer Ray Schnittker. Tim Tetrick will drive from post three. North America Cup and Adios-winner Fear The Dragon neighbors Filibuster Hanover in the second division of the Tattersalls. Owned by Emerald Highlands Farms, the Brian Brown-trained colt by Dragon Again, from the Western Ideal mare Armbro Cinnamon, has won 16 races in 25 starts, amassing over $1.3-million in earnings. Off a fourth-place finish in the Little Brown Jug, David Miller drives from post two. Filibuster Hanover, starting from the rail, scored his sixth win in 28 starts, taking his Bluegrass division in a career-best clocking. The gelding by Somebeachsomewhere, out of the Western Hanover mare Fashion Ecstasy, has earned $669,958 for owners Burke Racing Stable, Joe Di Scala Jr., Jerry and Theresa Silva Stables, and Weaver Bruscemi. Yannick Gingras drives for trainer Ron Burke. Entering off three-consecutive victories, Caviart Ally goes from post nine in the Glen Garnsey Memorial, sponsored by Diamond Creek Farms. By Bettor's Delight out of the No Nukes mare Allamerican Cool, Caviart Ally, a winner of nine races in 30 starts, earning $629,625 for owner Caviart Farms, won her division of the Bluegrass last week as the odds-on favorite in 1:51, which followed her 1:51.3 victory in the Jugette, besting Blazin Britches, who starts from post two. Andrew McCarthy will be in the bike for trainer Noel Daley. Pasithea Face S draws the outermost post in the Allerage Mare Trot, sponsored by Michelle and Albert Crawford, going from post five with Tim Tetrick piloting the Jimmy Takter trainee. Owned by Courant Inc., the five-year-old Muscle Hill mare, out of the Passionnant mare Jovelinotte, has 12 wins to her credit in 38 starts, including wins in the John Steele Memorial and Dayton Trotting Derby, earning $562,815. World-champion Emoticon Hanover competes against Pasithea Face S, going from post three. Exiting an open-length victory in the Ms Versatility, Emoticon Hanover, by Kadabra from the Ken Warkentin mare Emmylou Who, has won 14 races in 35 starts, compiling $873,802 in earnings for owner Determination Inc. Daniel Dube will drive for conditioner Luc Blais. Milton Stakes-winner Blue Moon Stride, off a second-place effort in an Open at The Red Mile last week, starts from post two in the Allerage Mare Pace, presented by Four Roses Bourbon. The four-year-old Rocknroll Hanover mare, from the Cam's Card Shark mare Classic Star, has earned nearly $1-million over 44 starts, winning 14. She is trained by Mark Harder and will be driven by David Miller. Also entered in the Mare Pace are millionaires Lady Shadow, the nearly $2-million earner starting from post one for trainer Ron Adams and driver Yannick Gingras, Sassa Hanover, going from post seven with Matt Kakaley driving for trainer Ron Burke, and Pure Country, the $2-million earner trained by Jimmy Takter with Mark MacDonald driving from post 10. First-race post for closing day at The Red Mile is set for 1:00 p.m. EDT. By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile        

LEXINGTON, KY-- Stolen Glimpse surged down the center of the track and by Western Fame battling at the pylons to upset in the first of two harness racing divisions for the $416,000 Tattersalls in 1:49.2 at The Red Mile. Check Six took control through a :26.4 opening quarter, soon losing it to Western Fame down the backstretch. Western Fame led through a :54.1 half before being challenged by Dr J Hanover into the far turn. Past three-quarters in 1:22.2, Dr J Hanover took a short lead from Western Fame, who fought back to take the lead midway through the stretch. Ambushed by Lindy Beach from second over, Dr J Hanover, Check Six, and Stolen Glimpse, Western Fame maintained control up until the wire, when Stolen Glimpse got his neck in front on the grandstand side. Earning $228,695 for owners Burke Racing Stable, Stable 45, Jerry & Theresa Silva Stables and Weaver Bruscemi, Stolen Glimpse, by Art Major out of the Jate Lobell mare Jated Love, won his third race in 19 starts. Trained by Ron Burke and driven by Brian Sears, he returned $41.40 to win. "We played a little game today," Mickey Burke Jr. said, "we pulled his back shoes and the horse seemed to really respond to it, plus Brian [Sears] drove him perfectly." "I think Brian just drove a perfect race," co-owner Jerry Silva said. "I didn't expect him to do as well as he did. But Ronnie [Burke] expected him to be a top horse at the beginning of the year, but then he sort of became an average horse, but today he showed he's much better than an average horse." Stolen Glimpse Racing Hill took control at the quarter and held onto command to win the other division of the Tattersalls in 1:49.4. He set fractions of :26.4, :55, and 1:23.2 before being confronted by Big Top Hanover from first over. Lyons Snyder chased the two battling through the stretch from third while American Passport drifted towards the center of the track attempting to sweep by Racing Hill. Big Top Hanover cut into Racing Hill's lead through the stretch, but managed only for second. By Roll With Joe out of the American Ideal mare Chasing Ideals, Racing Hill won his 11th race in 23 starts, amassing $1,462,876 for owner Tom Hill. Trained by Tony Alagna and driven by Brett Milller, he paid $3.80 to win. "This is a tremendous colt, but to be honest, I have to start racing him a different way," Brett Miller said. "I've been racing him very aggressively all year and the colt's just getting tired of doing all the work. I was kind of planning on not leaving today, but he drug me out of there and we ended up on the front. I just have to start taking better care of him. I have to start racing him from off the pace." Racing Hill By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

Sunday’s Tattersalls Pace at The Red Mile will have two $208,000 splits of nine, with Check Six in the first and Racing Hill in the second. Word was that Betting Line’s connections planned to supplement him to the race, but that hasn’t happened. The $45,000 supplemental fee for the two division format apparently didn’t make sense to them.  The Tattersalls began 13 years after the Triple Crown was established around the three half-mile track races—the Jug, Cane and Messenger—and, despite its noble heritage, doesn’t have the cachet of the Meadowlands Pace or North America Cup, the two races proponents of a newly constituted Triple Crown always bring up. An obvious tell on the lack of stature accorded the Tattersalls Pace was when in June of last year Marvin Bell, a prominent player on several fronts, proposed a revamped Triple Crown that would consist of five races: Meadowlands Pace, NA Cup, Jug, Breeders Crown and “a new race to be held at Lexington.” The inaugural Tattersalls Pace was won by Laverne Hanover in 1969. Bill Haughton’s diminutive Tar Heel colt had won 22 of 23 starts at two and was the first two-minute two-year-old on a half. Laverne won the Tattersalls in straight heats of 1:57 and 1:57.2 against a field of thirteen. Super Wave finished second in both heats. A single win gets it done today, but that’s the norm. The following year Columbia George won both heats in a world record 1:56 for Roland Beaulieu. The 1971 edition was when the Tattersalls generated headlines as Albatross, who needed to be nursed through both heats by Stanley Dancer, thanks to a sudden fear of autumn leaves, became the fastest pacer in the history of the sport thanks to a pair of 1:54.4 miles, the first from the second tier 12 post. Even when he earned the rail in the second heat, Albatross fell behind the field at the start when he broke stride. In the 47 editions of the race, ten starters, or 21%, have also won the Jug. In the 39 since the Pace came into being, nine, or 23%, have also won that stake. And in the 32 years since the NA Cup started, six, or 19%, have won both. Rocknroll Hanover, who won a split in 2005, won the Cup and Pace, in addition to the Tattersalls. Rocknroll drew off in 1:50.3 in his division for Brian Sears and Brett Pelling. Sears and Pelling also won a split the previous year with Bulletproof’s Western Terror in a lifetime best 1:48.3. Bettor’s Delight, who beat rival Real Desire in 1:49.4 in 2001, giving him a 7 to 1 advantage over Life Sign’s pride and joy, also won the Cup and the Jug. Gallo Blue Chip, the 2000 winner, added the Cup and the Pace. Nick’s Fantasy, who won a split in 1995, also won the Jug. And Carlsbad Cam, the third of four winners by Cam Fella, also took the Pace in 1992. In 1990 Beach Towel won in 1:51.3 and 1:51.1, with the latter setting a world record for a second heat. The winner of the Pace and Jug also set a single season earnings record in the Tattersalls; he topped $2 million that year. Nihilator, who had won the Pace and Jug, had been stymied by Mother Nature in his attempt to break daddy’s all-time 1:49.1 TT mark in Springfield, and was slated to skip the second heat of the Tattersalls and take a shot at the record. That didn’t work out, but he won the race in a tepid—for him—1:51.2. Ralph Hanover won the Pace and Jug, in addition to the Tattersalls. And 1978 winner Falcon Almahurst, who had taken the Pace, beat Flight Director in three heats for Bill Haughton. He bested the son of Flying Bret by two in 1:55.2 in the first; lost a head to that one in 1:57.2 in the second; and waited until the end to come out and nip Flight Director in 2:00.2 in the race-off. The 1976 winner Keystone Ore also won the Jug for Stanley Dancer, as did 1972 winner Strike Out for Keith Waples. And Nero won the previous year in straight heats of 2:00.3 and 2:00 over an off track. In 2014 He’s Watching was supplemented to the race for $45,000, despite losing three in a row prior to that. He had the misfortune to draw in against 1/5 Always B Miki, who beat Capital Account in 1:49.3. He’s Watching, who finished 66  lengths back, was diagnosed with a heart condition. JK Endofanera won the other division in 1:49.1 for Yannick Gingras and Ron Burke. 76/1 Winds Of Change finished second. In 2013 Captaintreacherous, who won the Pace and the Cup, made it 10 wins in 11 starts as the 1/5 favorite beat Vegas Vacation in 1:47.2. In 2012 Sweet Lou, who had disappointed after a terrific freshman campaign, winning eliminations of the Cup, Pace and Jug, but faltering in the finals, beat stablemate Hillbilly Hanover in 48.1 in the $510,300 Tattersalls Pace for Dave Palone and Ron Burke. He’d apparently been dogged by allergy issues all year and responded positively to the clean fall air in Lexington. The Panderosa gelding Alsace Hanover, who had won the Adios, caught a break when Roll With Joe got sick and couldn’t go in 2011. Alsace took a split in 1:50 over Westwardho Hanover for Ron Pierce and Tony O’Sullivan. Hugadragon won the other one for Gingras in the same time. Rock N Roll Heaven won the $604,000 edition in 2010 in 1:48.1 at 2/5 over One More Laugh for Dan Dube and Bruce Saunders. Well Said was upset by If I Can Dream with Tim Tetrick in one division the previous year, while 2/5 Vintage Master scored an easy wire to wire win in 1:51.2 in the other for Dan Dube. In 2008 Somebeachsomewhere and Art Official won the two divisions of the Tattersalls. The former in 1:47.4 and the latter in 1:48.3 for Ron Pierce and Joe Seekman. This was a week after SBSW set his 1:46.4 world record in the Bluegrass for Paul MacDonnell and Brent MacGrath. Erv Miller won a split in 2007 with Yankee Skyscraper, when Tell All and Won The West also won, and another the previous year with Shark Gesture. Aside from Rocknroll Hanover winning a division in 2005, American Ideal. who was supplemented to the race for $35,000 by Casie Coleman, did what SBSW would repeat three years later; he set a 1:47.4 world record for a three-year-old pacing colt in the Bluegrass, then came back and won the Tattersalls the following week in 1:49.2, both for Mark MacDonald.  So, two of the premier pacing sires of the modern era, both by Western Ideal, won the race that year. One of the greatest editions of the Tattersalls involved the 1987 battle between Laag and Jaguar Spur. The latter won the first heat in a photo and the pair finished the second in a world record 1:51.2 dead heat. There are 56 colts eligible to next week’s 49th edition of the Tattersalls. Some like Control The Moment are retired or unable to race for one reason or another, and many more are just not good enough. Last year 12 started in a single dash for $450,000, with 11 and 12 starting from the second tier. Division leaders Wiggle It Jiggleit, Wakizashi Hanover and Freaky Feet Pete did not enter. Artspeak won from the two post in 1:47.4 for Scott Zeron and Tony Alagna. Joe FitzGerald has been an avid harness racing fan and historian for the last half-century. He writes a weekly blog for  http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/.  Joe’s commentary reflects his own views and not that of Harnesslink.

LEXINGTON, KY -- After yielding to Split The House at the quarter, Tony Alagna-trainee Artspeak sat patiently in the pocket before pulling out at the three-quarter pole and rallying to the wire whilst holding off the bid of Lost For Words in his 1:47.4 triumph in the harness racing $450,000 Tattersalls Pace on Saturday, Oct. 10 at The Red Mile.   Scott Zeron sent Artspeak to the top heading to the opening quarter, passing it in :27. Split The House soon tipped first over and cleared the lead before the half, timed in :53. Enjoying no pressure on the lead, Artspeak generated a challenge that created a 1:20.1 third-quarter, and was soon alongside the pacesetter. Lost For Words, tracking Artspeak into the stretch, fanned wide and accelerated towards Artspeak, but Artspeak dug in and fought off Lost For Words, hitting the wire in 1:47.4. Rock N' Roll World was third, and In The Arsenal was fourth.   Sired by Western Ideal from the Artsplace mare The Art Museum, Artspeak collected his fifth win in 15 starts this year, paying $8.20 to win. He races for the interests of Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco, and In The Gym Partners.   "I really respect Split The House," Scott Zeron said. "He beat me one day when he followed me [in the New Jersey Classic at the Meadowlands], so I knew we were following a great horse there. I've always wanted my horse to be in a spot like that with fractions [like that], and he delivered."   "I was pretty enthused in the post parade just by the way he felt," Zeron also said. "To come back off of two heats [in the Little Brown Jug] and to be that strong and aggressive, and to go a lifetime mark of 1:47[.4], is impressive."   "We've had a great meet," Tony Alagna said. "We've had a lot of horses step up. Our two two-year-olds yesterday were fantastic [American Passport and Racing Hill]. We brought this horse down here hoping we could get the mark he deserved and it worked out tonight; he got his [1]:47-and-change mark. We couldn't be more pleased with him."   "He came down here, he was undefeated, and when I warmed him up the second week, the track was wet," Alagna also said regarding bringing Artspeak to Lexington last year. "It [the track] was real punchy underneath, and, of course, hindsight's never wrong: I should've pulled his back shoes that day because he had stifled joints and cords were getting to him late in the mile; that's why he got rough. Today was a nice redemption for the horse because he deserves it. I've been telling people all year that this horse is racing a lot better than people realize, and he showed that today."   "With the support of my customers, we bought some really nice stuff [yearlings] this year. I've got a great staff. They give me the ability to go out and look at horses and do what I need to do. They do a great job for me here at The Red Mile when I'm out doing what I need to do in the days and the nights. It's been a great meet."     By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY-- The final program of the season at The Red Mile contains a slew of harness racing stakes action, consisting of the $79,000 Allerage Mare Pace, $66,000 Allerage Mare Trot, $134,000 Allerage Trot, $148,000 Allerage Open, two divisions of the $232,000 Glen Garnsey Memorial, $262,500 Kentucky Filly Futurity, $450,000 Tattersalls Pace, and the $527,000 Kentucky Futurity, set to go on Saturday, Oct. 10.   The Allerage Mare Pace gathers a field of four, who are Skippin By, Show Runner, Color's A Virgin, and Inittowinafortune. Color's A Virgin, a daughter of Always A Virgin out of the Allamerican Ingot mare Full Color, is the most distinguished in the group, earning $853,598 in her career as well as winning 24 in 43 starts. She's shipping in from Hoosier Park off a 1:52.1 win in an Indiana Sires Stakes elimination. She's conditioned by Brian Brown for the interests of Emerald Highlands Farms.   European sensation D'one makes her return in the Allerage Mare Trot after breaking in a Maple Leaf Trot elimination on Sept. 12. While campaigning in the United States, she has won two races, the $181,450 Fresh Yankee on Aug. 8 at the Meadowlands and the $177,000 Muscle Hill on Aug. 21 at Vernon Downs. The mare by Donato Hanover out of the Supergill mare Giant Diablo is owned by Stall Kenny 23 and conditioned by Roger Walmann. An earner of $1,060,355, D'one enters off of a 1:55 qualifier on Oct. 2 at The Red Mile.   The Allerage Trot attracts D'one's stablemate Magic Tonight, who qualified in 1:55.4 on Oct. 2 at Lexington. Since shipping to America, the Andover Hall trotter, out of the Self Possessed mare Miss Possessed, owned by Srf Stable is winless in three starts, yet has 20 wins in 58 tries on his resume and $1,362,296 in earnings.   Against Magic Tonight are Il Sogno Dream, who won the $137,500 Dayton Trotting Derby on Oct. 2, and Obrigado, who scratched sick from the Dayton Trotting Derby. Il Sogno Dream, a Cantab Hall trotter, out of the Fill V mare Le Rev, trained by Christopher Beaver for connections Bill and Dan Manes and Leonard and Randy Christopher, has four wins this season and a mark of 1:52.2 taken at Scioto Downs. Obrigado, a gelding by Boy Band out of Malimony by Malabar Man and is conditioned by Paul Kelly for owners Paul Kelly Racing Stable, L. Higgins, W. Weaver, and Stable 45, has three wins this season, one of them being in the $200,000 Crawford Farms Trot.   Pacing sensation State Treasurer faces nine foes in the Allerage Pace. A winner of 30 races in 87 starts, the Real Desire pacer foaled by the Western Ideal mare Ideal Treasure has $1,796,214 to his credit, as well as wins in the $138,500 Dayton Pacing Derby, $513,750 Canadian Pacing Derby, and the $150,000 Roll With Joe. Doo Wop Hanover, one of the few pacers to beat him this season, draws better than the horse trained by Dr. Ian Moore for owners Sally and Paul Macdonald.   The first of two splits for the Glen Garnsey Memorial features the return of Bluegrass-division winner Wicked Little Minx. She meets up once more with Bettor Be Steppin, whom she defeated in the Bluegrass on Oct. 3. Owned by Courant A B and trained by Nancy Johansson, Wicked Little Minx, a filly by Rocknroll Hanover out of the Jenna's Beach Boy mare Beachy Lady, will start from post six. Bettor Be Steppin, racing for the interests Val D'Or Farms, Rojan Stables, and Ted Gewertz and trainer Joe Holloway, will start from post one. She's by Bettor's Delight out of Two Steppin' Sally by Western Hanover.   The latter division matches up the other Bluegrass-split winners Divine Caroline and Bedroomconfessions, trained by Joe Holloway and Tony Alagna respectively. Also entered is Devil Child, who makes her first start for her new interests of Susan Oakes and Crawford Farms, as well as for trainer Chris Oakes. The American Ideal filly out of the Astreos mare Kattimon finished second to Bedroomconfessions, owned by Riverview Racing and Alagna Racing, in her 1:54.1 win. Divine Caroline, winning her Bluegrass division in 1:53.2, is owned by Val D'Or Farms, Ted Gewertz, Rojan Stables, and Michael Ouriel.   The Kentucky Filly Futurity highlights a matchup between Mission Brief and Wild Honey, both of whom were Bluegrass winners on Oct. 3. Mission Brief, a Muscle Hill daughter out of the Varenne mare Southwind Serena owned by Burke Racing Stables, Our Horse Cents Stables, Jerry and Theresa Silva Stables, and Weaver Bruscemi, has won eight in 10 starts this season, taking a mark of 1:51.3 at the Meadowlands in her Hambletonian elimination. Wild Honey, the winner of the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, is owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, and Herby Liverman and trained by Jimmy Takter. She has won five races in 12 starts this year, with her mark being 1:52.2 in the Hambletonian Oaks.   The Tattersalls gathers a field of 12 to compete, including Artspeak, Lost For Words, and In The Arsenal. Artspeak, finishing fifth in the final of the Little Brown Jug, competes for Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco, and In The Gym Partners. He has only won four races in 14 starts this year, but has a mark of 1:48.2 taken at Mohawk in a division of the Simcoe Stakes. Lost For Words, who was second in the Little Brown Jug, is a Well Said colt out of the Real Desire mare Thou Shalt Not owned by Country Club Acres, W. Robinson, Richard Lombardo, and Strollin Stable. In The Arsenal, returning off a 1:52.3 win in the Bluegrass, is owned by White Birch Farms and In The Arsenal Racing. Kelvin Harrison trains the American Ideal colt out of the On The Road Again mare Ladyotra.   The finale on the program is the Kentucky Futurity, which will be raced in one heat. Hambletonian winner Pinkman headlines the bunch, shipping in from a 1:53.3 win in the $532,000 Canadian Trotting Classic on Sept. 19 at Mohawk Racetrack. The Jimmy Takter-trained son of Explosive Matter from the Angus Hall mare Margie Seelster has 10 wins in 14 starts this season and $1,486,965 in earnings. In his career, he has won 16 of 22 starts and earned $2,053,925. He's owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, Herb Liverman, and John Mc Clelland.   Trainer Jimmy Takter has four other entrants, being French Laundry, The Bank, Uncle Lasse, and Canepa Hanover. Crazy Wow, winner of a Bluegrass division and is trained by Ron Burke, supplemented into this event. He's owned by Our Horse Cents Stables, Jt45, Jerry and Theresa Silva Stables, and Deo Volente Farms.   By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

Always B Miki and driver David Miller brushed first-over at the half mile marker and blew away the field in capturing the $218,300 first division of the Tattersalls Pace for three-year-old pacing colts at the Red Mile Saturday. It was He’s Watching and driver Tim Tetrick who took the early lead away from Capital Account (Brett Miller) at the opening quarter mile in :27.4. Then David Miller came charging on the outside with Always B Miki and rolled on by He’s Watching and opened up to the five length lead on the field. He’s Watching then spit out the bit and began to fade badly as the rest of the field raced around him and tried to catch up to Always B Miki. Past the three-quarters in 1:22.3, Always B Miki still held the field at bay and did so down the stretch to win in 1:49.3 by two open lengths. Capital Account held for second place with Caviart Luca (Brian Sears). “He (He’s Watching) looked fine leaving to take the lead,” said David Miller, “The quarter I thought was pretty soft at :27.4. It really did not feel like we were picking up any speed when I made my move. I knew I could not let them get a half in :56.4 and then have to try and run him down. “I went and took a shot and moved him (Always B Miki) around him (He’s Watching),” Miller said, “and my horse did the rest. When I come at them (He’s Watching) he (Tim Tetrick) was just starting his horse up and he wasn’t going to park me, he was going to cut me loose. I don’t know what happened to them after that. My horse finished up good. He seemed good gaited. He does get on a line now and then.” Always B Miki is sired by Always A Virgin and trained by Joe Holloway for the Bluewood Stable, Val D’Or Farms and the Roll The Dice Stable. It was his ninth win in 16 starts this year. He paid $2.40 to win. He’s Watching did finish the race but was in last place. Always B Miki In the second $218,300 division of the Tattersalls Pace, JK Endofanera and driver Yannick Gingras were able to get to the front and just held on at the wire for a 1:49.1 triumph. It was Melmerby Beach (Paul MacDonell) shooting to the early lead with Stevensville (Mark MacDonald) getting the two-hole trip to the opening quarter in :26.4 but the lead was short lived as Gringras send JK Endofanera first-over and they cleared by the half mile marker in :54.2. Let’s Drink On It with Brian Sears then came first-over and they gave outside cover to Winds Of Change (Brett Miller) as they sped by the three-quarters in 1:22.2. Then the action really heated up for JK Endofanera as Sears was coming on with Let’s Drink On It and Winds Of Change was also on the move on the outside and he closed fastest of all and nearly caught JK Endofanera, who held on for the win by a neck. Somesizesomestyle (Matt Kakaley) closed well to be third. “He (JK Endofanera) is probably not at this best on the front,” Gingras said. “I didn’t want to give Brian (Let’s Drink On It) the good cover so we went to the lead. I figured my horse is good enough to win it on the front.” It was win number seven on the season for JK Endofanera, who is sired by Art Major. He is trained by Ron Burke and owned and bred by the 3 Brothers Stables of New York. JK Endofanera paid $3.20 to win. JK Endofanera By Steven Wolf, for Harnesslink.com  

Always B Miki and He's Watching on Saturday will appear in the same race for the first time since the Meadowlands Pace in July, and Joe Hurley is looking forward to their next round. Hurley bred and co-owns Always B Miki, who finished second to He's Watching in the Meadowlands Pace despite starting from post nine and racing on the outside - three to four wide at times - the entire way. He's Watching won the race with a world-record-equaling 1:46.4 performance. The two horses meet Saturday in the first of two $218,300 Tattersalls Pace divisions for 3-year-old male pacers at The Red Mile in Lexington. Always B Miki, trained by Joe Holloway, starts from post No. 1 with driver David Miller. He's Watching, trained by Dave Menary, starts from post four with Tim Tetrick at the lines. "I've already got it planned out in my mind, but Dave Miller will probably do something entirely different than what I would do," Hurley said. "They'll be 1-2 going to the top of the stretch, and then we'll see. Miki's on top, Tetrick's in the two hole. Then we'll see who can turn it on, and Miki never stops." Always B Miki, named after Hurley's wife, comes into the Tattersalls off a career-best 1:47.4 win last weekend in his division of the Bluegrass Stakes at The Red Mile. He won by 6-1/4 lengths over Melmerby Beach, pulling away thanks to a :25.3 final quarter-mile. No horse came home faster that day. "I thought it was consistent with everything he's done that nobody's noticed because it's in Indiana," Hurley said, referring to Always B Miki having spent the time since the Meadowlands Pace at Hoosier Park. "He's been racing there in hand. He's a monster." Always B Miki has won eight of 15 races this year and finished worse than second only three times. He has earned $432,332 for Hurley and fellow owners Bluewood Stable and Val D'Or Farms. Since the Meadowlands Pace, the colt has raced six times, winning five. In those victories, no horse was nearer than 4-1/2 lengths of Always B Miki at the wire. Hurley, who races as Roll The Dice Stable, bred Always B Miki's father and mother. His sire, Always A Virgin, won more than $1 million in his career for Hurley, Bluewood Stable and Val D'Or Farms. His dam, Artstopper, was unraced but is a half-sister to stakes-winner Cheyenne Rei and also produced $714,154-earner Yagonnakissmeornot. The family also includes stakes-winners Ain't No Stopn Him and Lon Todd Hanover. "Virgin was terrific, but Miki is incredibly terrific fantastic," Hurley said. "He's absolutely the best horse I've had. I think everybody (in the ownership group) agrees this is the best ever. "His stride is just incredible. He's had very bad luck with some things that have happened, either by nature or by fate. Now he's getting a chance to show himself and he's just absolutely fantastic." Always B Miki's schedule following the Tattersalls includes the Indiana Sire Stakes championship and the Circle City at Hoosier Park. He could be supplemented to the Matron Stakes and is likely to be supplemented to the Breeders Crown. "I'm looking forward to taking on the best and proving that he is the best," Hurley said. "Hopefully we end up on top at the end of the year." In the Tattersalls Pace second division, North America Cup winner JK Endofanera, who handed Always B Miki his only loss in his last six starts, takes on a field that includes Little Brown Jug runner-up Let's Drink On It. There also are two divisions of the Glen Garnsey Memorial for 3-year-old female pacers. The first division is headlined by stakes-winners Uffizi Hanover and Gettingreadytoroll, both from the stable of Jimmy Takter, and New York Sire Stakes champion It Was Fascination. In the second division, the top five finishers in a Bluegrass Stakes division last week - Gallie Bythe Beach, Act Now, Beach Gal, Ali Blue, and Allstar Rating - meet again. Action for 2-year-olds includes four divisions of the International Stallion Stakes for male pacers, where Artspeak puts his perfect 7-for-7 record on the line in the third of the splits. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications  

It’s beginning to look like Ake Svanstedt’s trotter Sebastian is so superior to the competition that he’s racing only against the clock. There was a time when time was privileged over purse money in the pursuit of assessing a stallion or mare’s suitability for the breeding ranks, but those days are long gone. Bob Marks never had much use for them, although he says he did “use them occasionally to get marks on horses that could never accomplish much in actual races.” Flip through the latest edition of the Breeder’s Book and you’ll find a couple of pacers with time trial marks—Jereme’s Jet and 26-year-old Cambest—and the Indiana stallion Jailhouse Jesse on the diagonal side. How sweet it would be to see Sebastian take to the track during the Red Mile meet with a pair of t-breds or pacers behind him and a jacked-up crowd cheering him home. He’d surely rid us of the 1:50 burden as well as Enough Said and his Colonial Downs asterisk. Fifty years ago just about every premium stallion and mare was measured against the clock at some point. Rodney, Fancy Crown, Most Happy Fella, Scotland, Yankee Lass, Bullet Hanover, Bye Bye Byrd, Dancer Hanover, Cheer Honey, Dayan, Hickory Pride, Elma, Isle Of Wight, Steady Beau and Sampson Direct all carry time trial marks. Some drivers specialized in handling the time trialing horses, while others were good with the prompters. When Adios Butler knocked two ticks off Billy Direct’s 22-year-old mark, which was set the day before Greyhound’s at The Red Mile on October 4, 1960, owner Paige West drove the 4-year-old while Del Miller and trainer/driver Eddie Cobb drove the t-bred prompters. When the 4-year-old Cash Hall went after Pine Chip’s 1:54 world record at Delaware in 2006, John Campbell drove the son of Self Possessed while Dave Palone chased after him with the Real Artist mare, Valentine. Cash Hall annihilated the mark with a 1:51.1 mile. On the trotting side, Greyhound’s TT1:55 ¼ mark, set on September 29, 1938 for Sep Palin, held fast for 31 years, until Nevele Pride dropped it to TT1:54.4 for Stanley Dancer at Indianapolis on Sunday August 31, 1969. Twelve thousand enthusiastic fans were in attendance that day. Coincidentally enough, a longstanding pacing mark of 1:55 was also set at that same Lexington meet in 1938: Billy Direct time trialed free-legged in 1:55 for Vic Fleming on September 28, 1938. That mark remained untouched during the 1940s. Frank Ervin put a 1:57.1 mark on 5-year-old Adios in a time trial when he was offered $500 to break the track record, and four years later another great progenitor, Gene Abbe, time trialed in 2:00.3, also at age five. But it took a race mark of 1:55 from Adios Harry in the American Pacing Derby at Vernon Downs on July 16, 1955, with the owner’s son Luther Lyons in the bike, to match Billy Direct’s mark. Adios Butler undercut the 1:55 standard five years later in the time trial referenced above. That 1:55 barrier was finally shattered. The great Speedy Crown didn’t break any records when he time trialed in 2:01.2 as a freshman in 1970, but after winning just four of eight starts and earning a paltry $2,000, he did prove that good things were on the way. Actually the first significant time trial for trotters in the 1970s came from Arnie Almahurst, a crazy fast son of Speedy Scot, who pretty much won every start he didn’t break stride in. He had little in common with his paternal brother, Speedy Crown, who never broke stride—not ever. Arnie time trialed in 1:57.2 at The Red Mile for Joe O’Brien and became the sixth fastest trotter behind Super Bowl, Nevele Pride, Ayres, Speedy Scot and Speedy Crown. Nine years later his 3-year-old son Arndon trotted the fastest mile ever by a trotter when he hit the wire in TT1:54 for Del Miller at The Red Mile. And twelve years after that Arndon’s 4-year-old son Pine Chip became the world record holder when he time trialed in 1:51 for John Campbell at Lexington. Arndon and his dad both retired as the fastest ever. Another important trotting time trial in the ‘70s was ABC Freight’s TT1:57.1 as a 2-year-old for Joe O’Brien at Hollywood Park in 1976. The sire of Garland Lobell topped Nevele Pride’s 1:58.2 freshman mark and became the fastest 2-year-old trotter ever. ABC set his lifetime mark of 1:56.3 the following year in a time trial. The market for blockbuster trotting time trials pretty much dried up after that, although Cash Hall did crush the half-mile mark with that 1:51.1 mile for John Campbell at Delaware in 2006 that was referenced above. The time trials involving Standardbred trotters under saddle has been less prevalent, nonetheless, it has played a prominent role due to the horses and people involved. In 1940 Greyhound ended his racing career under saddle at Lexington. Frances Dodge rode him to a world record of 2:01 ¾. That mark stood for 54-years, until Preferential and Brooke Nickells broke it in 1994 with a 1:58.2 mile. And six years later the mighty Moni Maker, like Greyhound, ended her career under saddle at The Red Mile. Jockey Julie Krone, with Jimmy Takter and Wally Hennessey following with prompters, trotted in an incredible 1:54.1. In the pacing camp it was up to Bret Hanover to continue the assault on the longstanding 1:55 standard that his paternal brother, Adios Butler, had begun. In early September of 1966, 4-year-old Bret, who was within a few months of being retired, time trialed in 1:54 at Vernon Downs for Frank Ervin with a single prompter chasing him. Five weeks later in Lexington Ervin put the TT1:53.3 mark on the big guy that would serve as his lifetime mark. Dancer preferred to put race marks on Albatross so there are no flashy time trials on Super Bird’s resume. He did become the fastest ever in a race when he won both heats of the Tattersalls Pace at The Red Mile in 1:54.4, topping Adios Harry’s race mark, which Bret had matched. He also won in 1:55.3 at Delaware, matching Adios Butler’s time trial mark and eclipsing Bret’s 1:57 half-mile track race mark. Steady Star, a free-legged son of Steady Beau,  who was a year older than Albatross, cornered the time trial market in that era. At three he circled The Red Mile in 1:54 for Joe O’Brien and the following year, on October 1, 1971, he time trialed in a head turning 1:52. Later on, in 1976, 4-year-old Nero time trialed in 1:55.1 and the following year Warm Breeze was race timed in 1:53.1 at Golden Bear in Sacramento. Two years later Meadow Skipper’s son Falcon Almahurst became the fastest 3-year-old pacer ever with a 1:52.2 time trial at Lexington for Bill Haughton. Only Steady Star had gone faster. Then came the game changer: 3-year-old Niatross’s TT1:49.1 at The Red Mile on Oct 1, 1980. It was the sport’s first sub-1:50 mile and, while it parallels Adios Butler’s breach of the 1:50 point, it was so much more. The closest thing to it was Steady Star going 1:52, but the sleek son of Steady Beau didn’t win a single open stakes race during his career—not so for Niatross. His son Nihilator was later positioned to outdo dad in a time trial at Springfield but the weather didn’t cooperate and he was unable to lower his 1:49.3 race mark in a time trial at DuQuoin.  Matt’s Scooter went after the 1:49.1 mark at The Red Mile in 1988 and knocked four ticks off of it. His 1:48.2 time trial for Mike Lachance established a new world record. Matt’s Scooter beat Niatross’s mark but 5-year-old Cambest blew it out of the water with his 1:46.1 time trial at Springfield. The problem was that he wasn’t tested afterwards and not long after that his 1:52.1 win in the Senior Jug was disqualified due to elevated bicarbonate levels. Cambest was slated to stand at Hanover Shoe Farms but in light of the controversial final chapter of his career they passed. So stick Jimmy Takter and Bernie Noren behind a couple of fast pacers and let’s see if Ake can wheel Sebastian around The Red Mile in a time that will cause the crowd to gasp the way they did for Steady Star’s 1:52 mile and Niatross’s 1:49.1. Speed has always sold in this game; time to pump it up via the time trial. by Joe FitzGerald, for http://viewfromthegrandstand.blogspot.com/

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