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Plainville, MA --- The Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta at Plainridge Park has not been hit since September and the carryover has been growing exponentially. With that pool now standing at $47,420 and the meet ending on Friday (Nov. 27), Plainridge has announced that Friday's Hi-5 wager in race six will carry a guaranteed $75,000 pool with a mandatory payout. If there is no unique winning harness racing combination purchased, the track will pay out on the closest winning combination(s) wagered. "Plainridge Park is very excited to offer this pool on Friday and excited for our fans to have the opportunity for a big payoff," said Jay Savastano, Mutuels Manager/Assistant Director of Racing Services at Plainridge Park. "Despite the challenges we have all faced in 2020, we had a very solid meet and our customers supported us all year. This guaranteed pool is a great way for us to end the year." The Wicked Hi-5 on Friday will be part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering program and as such, a free program page for the race will be available on the USTA's website (ustrotting.com) under the "Handicapping Tab" or by clicking here. (https://legacy.trackmaster.com/usta/prc1127x.pdf) The $75,000 guaranteed pool is the largest ever offered in the 21-year history of Plainridge Park. Plainridge Park will be dark on Thursday (Nov. 26) in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Post time for the first race on Friday is 1 p.m. The $75,000 guaranteed Hi-5 sixth race is slated to go off at 2:40 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Plainridge Park

Plainville, MA --- Eurobond took a while to grab the lead but when he did, it was for good and it paid off handsomely for his harness racing connections as he won the $25,000 Winners-Over trot at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (Nov. 23). Eurobond (Bruce Ranger) chased Make It A Double (Matty Athearn) to the quarter in :27.3 before taking over the lead past that station and calling the shots from there. Eurobond trotted away, opening up a two length lead at the half and extending it to three by three-quarters in 1:24.3, with the rest of the field in two rows experiencing futile pursuit. At the top of the stretch the leader had opened up by five but started to look vulnerable as Manny L (Shawn Gray) was flying late and making up considerable ground. But Eurobond found the wire first by 2-1/4 lengths in 1:55.4.   It was the fourth win of the year for Eurobond ($3.20) who has now earned $43,965 for owner Lindy Farms of Connecticut and Robert Rudolf. Domenico Cecere is the trainer. Cecere and Ranger also teamed up to win the $18,000 conditioned undercard trot with Sweet Shirley Mae ($2.10) who led with fractions of :28.3, :58.1 and 1:27.2 before turning for home, opening up six lengths and winning in 1:56.2. Sweet Shirley Mae is owned by Moni Market Breeders. Ranger also won with Brookroadgeorge (1:58.3, $9.20) and Gracie Under Fire (1:59.2, $16.00) on Monday to claim a driving Grand Slam on the card. Live racing will resume at Plainridge Park on Wednesday (Nov. 25) instead of Thursday (Nov. 26) due to the Thanksgiving holiday. And the final day of racing for the 2020 season will be held on Friday (Nov. 27). Post time for both days will be 1 p.m. Friday will feature a $47,420 carry over and a $75,000 guaranteed pool in the Wicked Hi-5 wager in the sixth race. The pool is part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering Program and as such, a free program page for the race will be available on the USTA's website (ustrotting.com) under the Handicapping tab on Wednesday afternoon (Nov. 25). The Wicked Hi-5 on Friday carries a mandatory payout so if there is no unique winning combination purchased, the track will pay out on the closest winning combination(s). The $75,000 guaranteed pool on Friday is the largest ever offered in the 21-year history of Plainridge Park. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA --- The Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta wager has been one of the most popular bets offered at Plainridge Park since its introduction and also one of the toughest to hit. Since the last winning ticket was cashed here back in September, the carryover pool has now grown to $47,420 after the ninth race on Friday (Nov. 21). Now with the meet heading into the final week, the pool must be paid out. Whereas the track has been offering the wager twice on each live racing day, this week the Wicked Hi-5 will be suspended from the wagering menu all week until Friday (Nov. 27) when it will be offered only one time in race six with a mandatory payout and guaranteed pool of $75,000. If there is no unique winning combination purchased, the track will pay out on the closest winning combination(s) wagered. The Wicked Hi-5 on Friday will be part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering program and as such, a free program page for the race will be available on the USTA's website (ustrotting.com) under the "Handicapping" tab on Tuesday afternoon. The $75,000 guaranteed pool is the largest ever offered in the 21-year history of Plainridge Park. With the Thanksgiving holiday coming up on Thursday (Nov. 26), there will be no live racing held at Plainridge. However that card of racing will be conducted on Wednesday (Nov. 25) instead. Post time for the final three days of racing at Plainridge Park is 1 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts    

Batavia, NY --- Harness racing driver Jim Morrill Jr. hit another milestone in his illustrious career after he steered Love The Dragon ($3.00) to victory in the third race at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 21) to reach 7,500 wins lifetime. In his typical style, Morrill went right to the front, rated a perfect mile and was a wrapped-up winner in 1:58.3. To date, Jim Morrill Jr. now has 40,273 starts with 7,500 wins, 6,220 seconds and 5,152 thirds with $108,289,933 in earnings. Morrill currently sits 13th in North America for UDR with a mark of .380. At the current Batavia Downs meet, Morrill is the leading driver with 86 wins, $426,956 in purse money and a UDR of .381. Morrill made his first start driving for his father at Foxboro Park in 1984. The family's operation eventually moved to Rosecroft Raceway where Morrill started getting many catch drives and soon found himself in high demand. In 1990 Morrill went to New York and started driving for Ray Schnittker and George Anthony at Yonkers Raceway and with much success achieved there, decided that move would be long term. During his time competing at the New York/New Jersey circuit Morrill recalled his most memorable race as being the 2004 Meadowlands Pace where Holborn Hanover was a 58-1 upset winner in 1:49 to equal the stake mark. After 15 years of driving at the highest level, Morrill left the metropolitan area in 2005 and relocated his family and business to western New York and since arriving has not only been at the very top of the driver colony on that circuit, but also an annual dominant force in the New York Sire Stakes. In 2006 at Batavia Downs, Morrill set the all-time driving standard for the track with 177 wins and a UDR of .537 for one meet. Long Train Runnin showed a lot of heart and determination as he snatched victory from the jaws of defeat in the $8,500 Open I Handicap pace at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 21).  Long Train Runnin (Shawn McDonough) got away third as Stratosphere (Drew Monti) took the scratch-shortened, single-file field to the half in :58. As they passed that station, Long Train Runnin was already out first-over and moving fast towards the leader as they proceeded into the clubhouse turn.  Moving towards three-quarters, Stratosphere and Long Train Runnin were pacing side-by-side and had broken away from the pack by three lengths on the strength of a :27.3 third panel. As they were rounding the final bend, Stratosphere pulled clear and opened up a length advantage heading into the stretch. But the relentless urging of McDonough reinvigorated Long Train Runnin who found another gear and caught Stratosphere at the wire by a head in 1:54.2. It was the fifth win of the year for Long Train Runnin ($6.10) who has now earned $32,552 this year for owner WIlliam Emmons. Jim Clouser Jr. does the training. Emmons and Clouser teamed up again in the very next race to capture the $7,500 Open II Handicap with McSpidey (Jim Morrill Jr.) who went wire to wire by 2-¼ lengths in 1:54.4. It was also the fifth win for McSpidey ($2.40) who is now over $343,000 in lifetime bank.  Shawn McDonough had a huge night at Batavia on Saturday, driving four winners and sending two for pictures that he trained. McDonough steered the aforementioned Long Train Runnin, Are You In (1:58.2, $22.40), Santana Beach (1:56, $25.80) and Nesh Cruiser (1:58.1, $27.40), who he also trained along with PL Lester (1:54.3, $10.20).  Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 25) with post time at 5 p.m. and there will be a guaranteed pool of $3,000 for the Pick-5 on Wednesday. The pool is part of the United States Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program and as such, free program pages for races one through five will be available on the USTA and Batavia Downs websites early next week. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Plainville, MA --- Shipping in fresh off a win at Yonkers Raceway last week, Betterlatethnnever moved up in class and showed his as he beat a stellar field of pacers in the $17,500 Winners-Over feature race at Plainridge Park on Friday afternoon (Nov. 20). Betterlatethnnever (Kevin Switzer Jr.) got away seventh off the gate while the heavily favored Hudson Phil (Jay Randall) marched off a stiff :26.1 first quarter before getting to the half in :54. JK Will Power (Mitchell Cushing) and Paternity Suit A (Drew Monti) came in the outer flow past that station but Hudson Phil was still clear on the lead. At the three quarters Betterlatethnnever was locked in sixth on the pylons while horses tipped three-deep around the last turn, trying to catch Hudson Phil who had opened up 3-3/4 lengths. But as the horses fanned heading down the stretch, Switzer found an opening and unleashed a torrid stretch drive by Betterlatethnnever who split horses in deep stretch and hit the wire first by a head in 1:51. It was the second win in a row and sixth win of the year for Betterlatethnnever ($16.60) and it pushed his earnings to $57,567 for owners Nickerson Racing and David Glazer. Driver Kevin Switzer Jr. ended the day with two wins on the card along with Mitchell Cushing and Matty Athearn. Gretchen Athearn led all trainers with two wins as well. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (Nov. 23), kicking off the final week of the live harness meet. And due to the Thanksgiving holiday, Plainridge will be dark on Thursday (Nov. 26). However that card of racing will be conducted on Wednesday (Nov. 25) instead. Closing day is Friday (Nov. 27). Post time for all three days is 1 p.m.    By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Plainville, MA --- Rock Diamonds N made an early second-over move behind live outer cover and turned it into a harness racing victory in the $17,500 District 9 Gronk Series at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon (Nov. 19). Avatartist (Bruce Ranger) got away sharp and was two on top at the quarter in :26.4. Shortly after that station, Bet You (Kevin Switzer Jr.) pulled first into the breeze while Rock Diamonds N (Ron Cushing) followed willingly. The field was in two rows heading up the backside with three in and three out when Bet You drew alongside Avatartist at three-quarters. That challenge faltered coming out of the last turn where Cushing tipped Rock Diamonds N three deep and started to drive hard down the lane. Avatartist was game and held his ground but Rock Diamonds N had a head of steam and rolled past him at the wire to win by 1/4 length in 1:53.   It was the fourth win of the year for Rock Diamonds N ($11.40) who now has earned $189,945 on the strength of 15 wins since coming to the Northern Hemisphere last year. The 7-year-old son of Rocknroll Hanover-Dancing Diamonds is owned by Kevin Sywyk, his driver Ron Cushing and Frank Ranaldi. Heidi Gibbs does the training. The team of Cushing, Sywyk, Ranaldi and Gibbs also doubled up, sending Mach Doro A ($8.40) to a six-length win in the day's final race. In the other $15,000 Gronk division, Quick Shot (Bruce Ranger) scored his second consecutive victory after pulling at the three-eighths to take the overland route to the top of the stretch where he grabbed the lead and then held off Cherokee Hiflyzane (Mitchell Cushing) by a neck at the wire in 1:53.3. Quick Shot ($5.60) is owned by Kathleen Brewer and is trained by Artie Brewer. Bruce Ranger was the top driver on Thursday, scoring a hat trick on the 10-race card. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (Nov. 20) with post time at 1 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Batavia, NY --- It's the same old story, same old song and dance for Il Mago, who has been seemingly unbeatable of late at Batavia Downs. And there was no page turned as he took yet another $8,500 Open I Handicap harness racing  trot in Genesee County on Wednesday night (Nov. 18) over an off track that saw snow flurries earlier in the day. Jim Morrill Jr. took his usual spot on the point with Il Mago off the gate and cut fractions of :28.2 and :57.2 without any early challenges. But past the half, Cr Blazin Beauty (Dave McNeight III) came calling and would accompany the leader all the way to the wire. Cr Blazin Beauty trotted towards Il Mago up the backside and around the final turn and by the top of the stretch, the leader was in her sights. As the finish drew near it was clear Il Mago needed the line as Cr Blazin Beauty had now trotted alongside. But the 11-year-old Il Mago knows how to close the deal and he did once again, winning by a neck in 1:57.3. It was the third straight win and fifth in the last seven for Il Mago ($5.20) who is owned by Mike Torcello and trained by Gerry Sarama. The Morrill, Torcello and Sarama team collectively had the Hat Trick on Wednesday as Toothofthedragon (1:58, $4.20) and Concertina's Image (1:58.4, $6.80) also registered wins. In the undercard $7,500 Open II pace for fillies and mares, Wonderful World (Billy Davis Jr.) tripped-out behind Yankee Secret (Dave McNeight III) until the stretch where she pulled and paced away to a 1-3/4 length win in 1:56.4. Wonderful World ($11.00) is owned by Mike Carrubba and her trainer, Sabrina Shaw. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday (Nov. 21) with post time at 5 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Batavia, NY --- Percy's Z Tam fought off a pair of challenges in the mile en route to winning the $8,500 Open I Handicap harness racing pace at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 14). When the gate released race, no one left and they headed around the first turn in post position order. Seeing the opportunity, Jim Morrill Jr. tipped Percy's Z Tam from third and took the front by the quarter in :28 and from there, he controlled the remainder of the contest. After coasting to the half at his own pace, the competition then headed his way as Tullow N (Ray FIsher Jr.) and Stratosphere (Drew Monti) came in the outer flow in the third turn in pursuit of the leader. Heading towards three-quarters, Percy's Z Tam turned back the outside threat but Long Train Runnin (Shawn McDonough) who was tripping out to this point, was poised to take his best shot. That came at the top of the stretch where McDonough pulled Long Train Runnin and started to drive hard. He made up ground all the way to the wire but he could not get by Percy's Z Tam, who hung on by a neck to win in 1:54.1. It was the seventh victory of the year for Percy's Z Tam ($6.50) and it pushed his earnings to $59,235 for owner Mike Torcello. Gerry Sarama trains the winner. In the $7,500 Open II pace, Thor De Vie (Dave McNeight III) grabbed the lead at the quarter, turned back a strong third quarter challenge from Barry Hanover (Kyle Cummings) and then out-paced the pocket sitting McSpidey (Jim Morrill Jr.) down the lane to capture his sixth win of the year in 1:55.2. Thor De Vie ($3.10) is owned by his trainer Jim Graham along with Lee Winters, Paul Tandlmayer and Giuseppe Micchia. Dave McNeight III had three other winners on the card giving him the driving Grand Slam. Besides Thor De Vie, he also won with Myell's Rockstar (1:55.3, $10.20), Falcon's Luke (1:59.3, $12.00) and Charmbo Orbit (1:55.4, $41.20). Another winning combination was driver Jim Morrill Jr., trainer Gerry Sarama and owner Mike Torcello who sent three winners to post Saturday night. Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 18) with post time at 5 p.m. And since there was no Pick-5 winner on Saturday, there is a carry over of $1,157 and a guaranteed pool of $5,000 for the Pick-5 on Wednesday. The pool is part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering Program and as such, free program pages for races one through five will be available on the USTA and Batavia Downs websites early next week. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Plainville, MA --- The Fun Marshall has certainly had a good time since coming to Plainridge Park. After getting her first win of the year at the Meadowlands on October 2nd, she is now four-for-four at The Ridge after taking the $12,000 fillies and mares harness racing feature pace on a very inclement Friday afternoon (Nov. 13). Best Honey Hanover (Kevin Switzer Jr.) took the lead with The Fun Marshall right behind, and went to the quarter in :26.3. Positions remained unchanged to the half where Odds On Algorithm (Shawn Gray) motored up the outside to challenge the leader. The three horses broke away from the pack up the backstretch and got to three-quarters in 1:24.1. Halfway through the last turn, Best Honey Hanover started to fade and The Fun Marshall tipped three-deep around her. It turned into a match race down the lane as The Fun Marshall and Best Honey Hanover traded strides all the way to the wire where The Fun Marshall just got up to win in 1:53.1.   Still perfect in Massachusetts, The Fun Marshall ($5.20) is also perfect for her owners Jim Winske, David Winske and Stephen Michaels. Melissa Beckwith trains the winner. Beckwith also trains Mach Me Onemore (1:54, $2.60) and Rural Art (1:53.2, $7.20) who both won, giving her a training triple. Drivers Bruce Ranger and Shawn Gray each had two wins to lead all drivers on Friday. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (Nov. 16) with post time at 1 p.m. There are only six racing days left in the 2020 live racing meet which concludes on Friday (Nov. 27). By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA --- JK Will Power took the overland route to an impressive harness racing victory in the $17,500 Winners-Over pace at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon (Nov. 12). Mitchell Cushing seated JK Will Power third off the car while Paternity Suit A (Drew Monti) took the lead at the quarter. Just past that station Major Leaguer (Nick Graffam) popped the pocket and grabbed the front as they hit the half in :56.1. At that point JK Will Power was already out and wheeling with Hudson Phil (Jay Randall) on his back heading to three-quarters. With the field now three in and three out, Major Leaguer continued to lead past the three-quarters and through the last turn, but started to falter at the head of the stretch. JK Will Power took the lead there while Hudson Phil tipped three deep and Paternity Suit A found room along the pylons. And although the two chasers made up ground to the wire, JK Will Power stayed on task to finish the job and win by 1/2 length in 1:52.1.   It was the seventh win of the year for JK Will Power ($12.00) and it pushed his earnings to $68,280 for owner Michael Goldberg Racing. Jeff Lieberman is the trainer. In the co-featured $17,500 District 9 "Gronk" series, Beachchip Hanover (Shawn Gray) sat a perfect pocket trip behind Avatartist (Bruce Ranger) the entire race until the stretch where he pulled and kicked home to a 1-1/2 length in 1:51.3 victory. Beachchip Hanover ($7.20) is owned by Jeffrey Epstein and Steven Gondelman and is trained by Jamie Gerard. In a true rarity, 10 different drivers and 10 different trainers accounted for the day's 10 winners at The Ridge on Thursday. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (Nov. 13) with post time at 1 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Batavia, NY --- The Wednesday evening (Nov. 11) racing menu at Batavia Downs featured a pair of $8,500 Open I handicap harness racing events that produced definitive winners on both the pace and the trot and also saw the meet's second winningest driver, Billy Davis Jr., win five races on the card. In the handicap pace for fillies and mares, Protect Blue Chip (Billy Davis Jr.) took the lead and was pushed through blistering early fractions of :27 and :55.4 by Tellawoman (Dave McNeight III). But the feverish tempo to the half only gave way to a fantastic finish by Protect Blue Chip, who kicked away by three lengths around the last turn and stretched that out to five at the wire where she won handily in 1:55.3. It was the fifth win of the year for Protect Blue chip ($4.10) who is owned by Vogel and Wags Nags Stable, Team rice Racing and Adelphi Bloodstock and is trained by Maria Rice. Later in the handicap trot, Il Mago (Jim Morrill Jr.) bolted to a 3-1/2 length advantage at the quarter, extended that to five open at the half and stretched it out to six at the head of the stretch. From there he closed out the mile on top by three in 1:57. For Il Mago ($7.70) it was the seventh win of the year and 53rd lifetime and the winner's share of the purse pushed his career earnings in excess of $891,000. Mike Torcello owns the Gerry Sarama trained son of Kadabra-Northern Style. Billy Davis Jr. had a monster night, winning five races on the card including a natural Hat Trick in races one through three. Besides the already mentioned Protect Blue Chip, Davis scored with Hey Sweetie (1:56.3, $14.00), Babylon's Bridge (1:59.4, $4.00), Aunt Betty (1:58.3, $7.30) and Kredit Karma (2:00.2, $12.80). Three of Davis's winners were trained by Maria Rice and she led all conditioners on Wednesday as a result. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday (Nov. 14) with post time at 5 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Plainville, MA --- After a successful stint at Yonkers Raceway, Nows The Moment returned to Plainridge Park and reclaimed top honors after dominating in the $17,500 Winners-Over harness racing trot on Monday afternoon (Nov. 9). Nows The Moment (Mike Stevenson) left three-deep into the first turn and took the lead before the quarter in a blistering :26.2. Mister Muscle (Bruce Ranger), who was tracking right behind him, then grabbed the front right after he cleared as they passed by the stands. Not content with the trip, Nows The Moment once again pulled to retake and did so before the half in :54.3. An eighth of a mile later, Eurobond (Drew Monti) was out and rolling towards the two-move leader to press the issue further. They trotted past three-quarters in 1:23.1 and tangled into the stretch when Nows The Moment started to kick away and opened up a two length advantage. With Stevenson keeping him on task, Nows The Moment maintained his lead to the wire over a late closing If Not Why Not (Kevin Switzer) and won in 1:53.2.   Nows The Moment ($7.20) has now earned $86,700 on the strength of six wins this year for owner Sonya McDonald. L Alex MacDonald is the trainer. In the secondary featured $15,000 conditioned trot, two-time Massachusetts Sire Stake champion Without A Warning (Shawn Gray) extended her winning streak to six in a row after she took the lead past the quarter, fought off a challenge from Dazzling Lindy (Drew Monti) at three-quarters and trotted away down the lane to a wrapped-up 1-1/2 length win over Southwind Frost (Mitchell Cushing) in 1:54.3. Without A Warning ($2.40) is a 3-year-old filly who swept the MASS for two consecutive years and now boasts $424,822 in lifetime earnings on the strength of 12 wins in only 26 career starts for breeder/owner Ray Campbell Jr. George Ducharme trains the winner. Shawn Gray, Nick Graffam and Mike Stevenson all had two driving wins on Monday while Mike Graffam led all trainers with two wins as well. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Thursday (Nov. 12) with post time at 1 p.m. by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

Batavia, NY --- Fresh off a late closing victory in the top pace at Batavia Downs last week, Mr. Euroman N found himself right back in the winner's circle once again after capturing the $8,500 Open I Handicap pace at the Downs on Saturday afternoon (Nov. 7). M. Euroman N (Billy Davis Jr.) got away fourth as Tullow N (Ray Fisher Jr.) took the lead by the quarter and then paced smartly to the half in :57. At that point Davis had Mr. Euroman N out and moving first-over into the third turn and drew alongside Tullow N by the three-quarters. Davis and Fisher then commenced rocking and knocking around the far turn with Mr. Euroman N getting an advantage heading down the lane that he would keep all the way to the line where he won by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:54.3. It was the third Open I win in the last four stars for Mr. Euroman N ($4.80) and owners Vogel and Wags Nags Stable, Team Rice Racing and Adelphi Bloodstock. Maria Rice trains the winner. The $7,500 Open II pace went to Stratosphere (Drew Monti) who dropped down from Open I company this week and led throughout the entire mile before holding off the tripped-out Percy's Z Tam (Jim Morrill Jr.) at the light to win by a neck in 1:54.1. It was the sixth win of the year for Stratosphere ($5.80) who is owned by his driver and trained by Darrin Monti. Billy Davis Jr., Drew Monti and Jim Morrill Jr. all had three driving wins on Saturday while trainers Darrin Monti, Jerry Nugent Jr., Gerry Sarama and Lee Dahn all had two wins apiece. When racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 11) there will be a guaranteed pool of $3,000 for the Pick-5 wager that day. The pool is part of the United States Trotting Association's Strategic Wagering Program and as such, free program pages will be available courtesy of Trackmaster on both the USTA and Batavia Downs website early next week. Post time for Wednesday is set at 5 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Plainville, MA --- Coming off a heavy slate of stake action in Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Indiana, Gai Waterhouse drew into a $12,000 overnight conditioned harness racing event at Plainridge Park on Friday afternoon (Nov. 6) and paced away with her first win of 2020. Watchful Eye (Shawn Gray) took the early lead before Gai Waterhouse (Drew Monti) grabbed the top spot in front of the stands. Positions changed again when Watchful Eye retook once more as the pair do-si-doed by the half. The two top horses remained in one-two order to the three-quarters and around the last turn, but when they approached the head of the stretch Monti tipped Gai Waterhouse and the filly went right past Watchful Eye. She then paced strong to the wire one length ahead of the late closing Scotlynn Seelster (Mitchell Cushing) to win in 1:54.2, which was a new seasonal mark.   Gai Waterhouse ($2.10), who was the Kentucky Sire Stake 2-year-old pacing filly champion last year, has now earned $220,367 in only 18 lifetime starts for owner Great horse and trainer Domenico Cecere. Driver Matty "Ice" Athearn was at it again at Plainridge. On Monday he won with 60-1 shot Stihl N and returned $133.40, which was the largest win payoff of the season. On Friday Athearn left from post one with 69-1 shot Easteriffic and followed the heavily favored Gottalovemyshadow (Shawn Gray) to the top of the stretch where he pulled and blew right by to win by 2-1/2 lengths and pay $141.00. Joan Harmon, Normand St. Clair and Mike Foley own the Gretchen Athearn trained filly who now holds the distinction of paying the highest win mutuel of the meet. Bruce Ranger was the top driver on Friday, winning four races during the afternoon while Melissa Beckwith was the winningest trainer with three scores. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Monday (Nov. 9) with post time at 1 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts      

Plainville, MA --- The harness racing District 9 event for Plainridge Park based pacers with a Trackmaster of 87 or less known as "The Gronk" continued for a second week with a $17,500 purse on Thursday afternoon (Nov. 5) with Bet You claiming the winner's share of the purse. Driver Kevin Switzer Jr. floated out third to the quarter with Bet You while Waves (Nick Graffam) took the lead. But once Waves settled, Bet You made a brush for the lead in front of the stands and then got to the half in :55. Tisadream N (Drew Monti) pulled first-over at that point and would proceed to push the leader for the rest of the mile. Heading up the backside Tisadream N slowly made up ground despite the :27.1 pace set by Bet You, and by the top of the stretch he was within 1-¼ lengths of the front runner. Heading down the stretch the lead continued to diminish as Tisadream N dug in, but Bet You was tough and closed out the mile on top by three-quarters of a length in 1:51 flat. It was the third win of the year for Bet You ($8.00) who is owned by Scott Dillon. Joe Nelson is the trainer. The track record for 3-year-old pacing colts was tied on Thursday in the $15,000 condition for 5-year-old and under pacers by newcomer Sports Obsession (Drew Monti) who shipped-in to Plainridge from Woodbine/Mohawk Park after a 27 day layoff and overcame post seven to go gate to wire and win by 1-¾ lengths in 1:51.1. The time was also a new lifetime mark for the winner.   Sports Obsession ($5.00) is a son of Sportswriter-Hayworth Blue Chip that is owned by Joseph Trice and trained by Jimmy Nickerson. Monti and Nickerson were a hot tandem on Thursday combining for three wins on the card. Besides Sports Obsession, the pair also sent OK Kudo (1:53.1, $8.60) and Givenupdreaming (1:51.4, $3.00) to the winner's circle. Monti ended up with the driving Grand Slam adding GD Cruise For Gold (1:55.1, $5.00) to his tally for the afternoon. Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (Nov. 6) with post time at 1 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts    

Batavia, NY --- One came from behind and one led all the way, but both were the best in their harness racing class at Batavia Downs on Wednesday evening (Nov. 4). The $8,500 Open I Handicap trot was won by Lougazi (Ray Fisher Jr.) who got away a gapped fifth while Daylon Phantom (Dan Yetman) took an unchallenged lead to the half in :58.2. There, Before I Die (Jim McNeight Jr.) pulled first over with an advancing Lougazi on his tail. Positions remained the same up the backside and around the far turn until Lougazi tipped three-deep at the top of the stretch and the pocket-sitting Majestic Kat (Billy Davis Jr.) found room inside and shot through. Four pylons from the wire, Lougazi and Majestic Kat passed Daylon Phantom and then hit the line together in 1:58.4. After the photo, Lougazi got the nod and came back for his picture.   It was the fourth win of the year for Lougazi ($8.10) who made his first start in almost a month for owner Mary Warriner. Ryan Swift is the trainer. Then in the Open II pace for fillies and mares, Tellawoman (Jim Morrill Jr.) led every step of the mile, tripping the timers in :28.4, :58 and 1:26.3 before turning for home and hitting the line on top by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:55.4. It was the third straight win and fourth out of the last five for Tellawoman ($3.10) who is owned by Rose Campbell and trained by Russell Bratt. Tellawoman winning in 1:55.4 Ray Fisher Jr. led all drivers on Wednesday as he registered a hat trick. Also Jim Morrill Jr., Billy Davis Jr. and Drew Monti, who are currently the top three dash drivers of the meet in that order, all had two wins. On the conditioning side, 12 different trainers accounted for the night’s 12 winners. Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday (Nov. 7) with post time at 1:15 p .m. The early start is due to the Breeders Cup races.   By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

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