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March 10, 2019 - Today’s Gr. I UET Master Series Grand Criterium de Vitesse Nice-Matin (purse 170,000€, 1609 meters autostart, nine harness racing International starters) went to late rallying Readly Express (7m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream) with Bjorn Goop aboard for trainer Timo Nurmos and owner Bro Byggnads AB.  The grand champion tied the race record of 1.08.90kr set a year ago by Bold Eagle, and increased his career earnings to 2,201,824€. Goop and Ready Express were away from the gate sixth as Romain Derieux put Dijon (6m Ganymede-Sonate d’Aunou) on the lead with Uza Josselyn (8f Love You-Teza Josselyn) in the pocket for Gabriele Gelormini. Bold Eagle (8m Ready Cash-Reethi Rah Jet) fired off the gate from past seven and engaged Dijon, but Derieux did not take back. Dijon parked the Eagle around the first turn and into the backside when Bold Eagle showed weakness. He was being followed by Bahia Quesnot (8g Scipion du Goutier-Queen Ines) and her pilot Junior Guelpa took up the challenge to Dijon as they battled into the long lane when Dijon looked a winner until Readly Express caught him nearing the official finish post at Cagnes sur Mer and moved ahead by half-length at the extra 1609 meter finish line. Dijon and Bahia Quesnot, both timed in 1.09kr, gamely held second and third with Uza Josselyn fourth clocked at 1.09.2kr. Billie de Montfort (8f Jasmin de Flore-Quismy de Montfort) was away fifth and finished fifth timed in 1.09.3kr and trying to follow Readly Express. Unique Juni and Bold Eagle was dq’s, the latter pacing in the lane after fading badly. Click here for a video replay   Thomas H. Hicks

Readly Express (6m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos) took Aby’s featured V75-7 Svenskt Masters (Gr.II National, 500,000SEK to the winner, 2640 meters autostart) timed in 1.11.9kr and reined by Bjorn Goop for trainer Timo Nurmos. This classy trotter now has 23 career wins in 30 starters for 18,283,709SEK earned. Pacesetter Cyber Lane (5g Raja Mirchi-Sybaris Hanover-Cantab Hall) held second for driver Christoffer Eriksson and trainer Johan Untersteiner. Third was Racing Mange (5m Orlando Vici-Kara Kickan-Alf Palema) and trainer/driver Joakim Lovgren. Carabanieri (7m Wellino Boko-Dew Princess-JR Broline) held fourth for trainer/driver Peter Untersteiner after making a bold bid with 500 meters remaining. On the undercard was the Gr. II National for Mares (500,000SEWK to the winner, 2140 meters autostart). Cash Crowe (5f ready Cash-Giant Crowe-Gigant Neo) scored for Christoffer Eriksson and owner/trainer Petri Puro. She recorded victory number 11 in 14 career starts now for 4,444,885SEK earned. Dear Friend (5f Orlando Vici-Juventas Broline-Pine Chip-Warrawee Anika-Balanced Image) was second for Erik Adielsson and trainer Johan Untersteiner. In Toto Sund for Orjan Kihlstrom and Darling Mearas with Stefan Persson up completed the top four finishers. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

January 28, 2018 - The Timo Nurmos trained, Bjorn Goop driven and Bro Byggnads AB owned and 2.2/1 second choice Readly Express (6m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream) raced perfectly second over in tier two around the final bend and then surged to the front on then leading Bird Parker and gamely held off 2.1/1 harness racing  favorite, defending and two time champion, Bold Eagle (7m Ready Cash-Reethi Rah Jet) and Franck Nivard to win the winter classic timed in 1.11.2kr. The 97th edition of the Prix d'Amerique is raced over the grande piste at 2700 meters for a purse of €1,000,000 and had 18 of the world’s best at the start, that took the judges several attempts to get the field underway. Fractions were steady (1.12.6kr at the 1500 meters to go mark; 1.11.6kr at the 1000 and 1.11.7kr at 500 remaining). Propulsion (7m Muscle Hill-Danae) at 4.2/1 rallied for third driven by Orjan Kihlstrom after being the second leader when he took over from Oasis Bi. Belina Josselyn (7f Love You-Lezire Josselyn) also rallied nicely for J-M Bazire at 6.8/1  to capture fourth ahead of 72/1 Briac Dark (7m Prince Gede) and driver Matthieu Abrivard. Leader Bird Parker (7m Ready Cash) and Italy’s Ringostarr Treb (8m Classic Photo earned the final checks. The exact order Quinte+ payoff was €993. Follow You Wins Gr. III Prix Leopold Veroken The Prix Leopold Veroken (Gr. III, purse €80,000, 2100 meters autostart) produced an impressive victory this evening at Vincennes for Follow You (3m Ready Cash-Mara Bourbon) timed in 1.14.4kr and driven by Franck Nivard for trainer Sebastien Guarato for Stall Bivans Srl. Jean-Pierre Dubois’ Ecurie Dream With Me bred the youngster now with four wins in six career starts. Ziosauro Jet (3m Maharajah-Liberte) was second for Vincenzo d’Alessandro Jr.Third was Fiorella de Ted (3f Up And Quick-Ravissante Jo) for Anthony Barrier. Dubois was the interviewing star in the winners’ circle. The winners’ dam Mara Bourbon (And Arifant-Etta Extra) was a winner of €1,657,405) with a speed record of 1.10.7kr. Her last win was in 2006 at Cagnes sur Mer in the Gr. II Grand Prix du Conseil General Alpes Maritimes and just prior she won the Oslo Grand Prix with Jean Pierre Dubois up. Watch for the colt Follow You, he could be special. Ebella Aimef Wins Prix Meadowlands at Vincennes Ebella Aimef (4f Kiwi-Harmonie du Fosse) took this evenings’ Prix Meadowlands (purse €50,000, 2850 meters petite piste) as the rains began to fall at Vincennes. Eric Raffin teamed the 1.7/1 odds winner timed in 1.14.9kr for trainer J.L. Bigeon. Elena Princesse (4f Timoko-Quatinka) was second for J-M Bazire at 7.2/1and Ecurie le Tremont while third went to Eclipse Danica (4f Hasting-Carine Romanie) at 8.8/1 with trainer Pierre Vercruysse up for owner Comte de Senneville. The US Hambletonian Society Management (John Campbell and wife, Moira Fanning and former CEO Tom Charters) presented the trophy. Thomas H. Hicks

December 24, 2017 - Seventeen trotteurs entered by prestigious Criterium Continental today at Paris Vincennes, the harness racing Gr. I Epique contest (2100 meters autostart, total purse €240,000) for four year olds with the winner obtaining an Amerique ticket at end of January. Five mares were entered and they took the top three finishing spots. 16/1 Doria Desbois (4f In Love With You-Ivaniez) scored for Matthieu Abrivard, owner/trainer Christophe Feyte and E.A.R.L. Guitet-Debois bred the winner. Race time was a quick 1.10.7kr with a furious kick home after fast fractions (1.05.3kr at 1500 remaining; 1.08.1kr at the 1000; 1.09.9kr with 500 to go). Doria Desbois now has nine career wins in 22 outings for €325,710 earned. She raced third in the third tier before an explosive late move. 6.9/1 Draft Life (4f Ubriaco-Maflymede) was a solid second for Eric Raffin driving for breeder/owner/trainer Louis Baudron. 18/1 Delia du Pommereux (4f Niky-Nounes du Pommereux) finished third for trainer/driver Sylvain Roger and breeder/owner Noel Lolic. 2.7/1 Django Riff and 30/1 Dragon des Racques were the next pair to the line. Urlo dei Venti was scratched. Readily Express wins Prix Tenor de Baune Many awaited his arrival at Vincennes and a presumed battle with Twister Bi. Readly Express (13) did not disappoint and easily won his ticket to America as the Gr. II Prix Tenor de Baune (total purse €120,000) champion at Paris-Vincennes, after racing on the lead much of the way, using a slow pace directed by Bjorn Goop. Distant in his wake after a perfect pocket journey, Treasure Kronos (8) held second, in front of Charly du Noyer (11). Fractions were as follows over the classic 2700 meter distance (1.12.9kr with 1500 to go; 1.14.1kr at the 1000; 1.14kr with 500 remaining; 1.12.9kr finish). Readly Express (5m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream) was off as 1.3/1 favorite for driver Bjorn Goop, trainer Timo Nurmos and BRO Byggnads AB, the owner. His career earnings are now €1,063,424. 29/1 Treasure Kronos (5f Raja Mirchi-Glide About) was second driven by Gabriele Gelormini for trainer Jerry Riordan and Aeto & Dios AB. 23/1 Charly du Noyer (5m Ready Cash-Ornella Jet) handled by Yoann Lebourgeois was third for trainer Philippe Allaire and Ecurie Normandy Spirit. 4.3/1 Carat Williams (5m Prodigious-Miss Williams) was fourth for David Thomain and 2.6/1 Twister Bi (5m Varenne-Lorraine Bi) rallied late to be fifth for Alexandre Abrivard, trainer Riordan and Pasquale Ciccarelli. Caid Griff and Coup Droit earned the sixth and seventh paychecks. Wild Honey was scratched and Cobra Bleu was a misque dq in the lane. Dexter Fromentro and Eveil du Chatelet win Groupe Monte tests Today’s Paris-Vincennes card was far more than Criterium Continental and Prix Tenor de Baune. Two monte groupe events also highlighted the program. The Gr. II Prix Emile Riotteau (purse €120,000, monte, 2700 meters, nine starters) went to 1.7/1 Dexter Fromentro (4m Qwerty-Princesse d’Ombree) clocked in 1.14.5kr with Camille Levesque in the irons as he increased career earnings to €183,870 with his fourth lifetime victory. Thomas Levesque trains the winner, up in the final strides, for owner Pierre Levesque and he was bred by Francoise Meslin. 10/1 Derby du Dollar (4m Rodrigo Jet-Magalie du Dollar) was second with Matthieu Abrivard up for trainer Sylvain Roger and third was 25/1 Dragon d’Avril (4m Thorens Vedaquais-Sirence d’Avril) for Adrien Lamy and breeder/owner Sebastien  Houyvet. 3.3/1 Dawana was sixth Next up was the €240,000 classic Prix de Vincennes (Gr.I, monte, 2700 meters, 14 starters, three year olds). 73/1 Eveil du Chatelet (3m Very Look-Uranie du Chatelet) scored with J-Y Ricart in the irons. J-M Bazire trains the winner, that recorded his second career win in 11 starts, now for €150,180 earned. Today he more than tripled career bank account. 7/10 favorite Evidence Roc (3f Paris-Haufor-Misfase du Boulay) took second for trainer/jockey Emilie LeBeller and Ecurie d’Embeli, just missing with a game challenge. Third was 5.2/1 Elladora de Forgan (3f Gazouillis-Hamina) with Franck Nivard up for trainer Franck Leblanc. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from France. Thomas H. Hicks  

Villiam, a 3-year-old Swedish colt sired by Muscle Hill, won the Kriterium, raced over the 1-5/8th mile distance at Solvalla, Sunday afternoon (Oct. 1) in a harness racing world record of 1:55.4f (mile rate), driven by Jorma Kontio. The Kriterium is the biggest race in Sweden for 3-year-old trotters and carried a purse for the winner of $244,000. However, in Sweden an owner can choose between a premium of $2,400, when his youngster qualifies, or double the prize money in some future big stakes races such as the Kriterium. The owner, breeder and trainer of Villiam, Timo Nurmos, forfeited the premium and therefore got twice the prize money -- $488,000. Add in a breeder’s premium of 30 percent ($146,000) and Nurmos' total winnings this Sunday was $634,000. Nurmos also owned and trained the dam of Villiam, Gold Strike, she by Striking Sahbra. Gold Strike took a mark of 1:54f and earned $236,000. Villiam, who is named after Nurmos' grandfather, is the first foal out of Gold Strike to hit the track. Villiam has raced seven times and won six races and has one second. The Oaks, with a purse for the winner of $171,000, was won by Candy la Marc, driven by Erik Adielsson. Candy La Marc enjoyed a pocket trip behind the favorite Dibaba, driven by Ôrjan Kihlström, and found racing room just 100 yards before the finish line. She won the 1-5/16th mile event in 1:56.3f. Candy la Marc was bred, raised and is trained by Lars Marcussen from Denmark, who took the premium out for Candy la Marc when she was a 2-year-old. Candy la Marc is sired by Scarlet Knight and out of Oiseau, she by Andover Hall. Oiseau was bred by Russell C. Williams and is a full sister to Clerk Magistrate, who has been at stud in Sweden. by Karsten Bønsdorf, USTA Newsroom Senior Correspondent 

September 30, 2017 - Jorma Kontio confidently steered 1/5 favorite Readly Express (5m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos) to victory in today’s  Gr. I European Championship for harness racing five year-olds at Solvalla, raced over 2140 meters autostart with 500,000SEK to the winner.  Total purse in euro was €101,888. Bro Byggnads AB owns this Timo Nurmos trainee. 8.9/1 Treasure Kronos (5f Raja Mirchi-Glide About-Yankee Glide) sat fifth on the pegs and escaped to rally strongly for second driven by Christoffer Eriksson for trainer Jerry Riordan. Third was early pacesetter 43/1 Nappa Scar (5m Scarlet Knight-Butterfly Player) for trainer/driver Per Lennartson that eventually sat the pocket behind the race winner. Race time was 1.12.kr with quick final fractions. Earlier in the week (Sept.27) was the 10th leg of the Gr. III Grand National du Trot at Lisieux (purse €90,000, 2725 meters) and Cantin de l’éclair (5g Jet Furtuna-Noce Joyeuse) scored for Tony LeBeller timed in 1.14.5kr. The 25 meter handicapped Vulcania de Godrel (8f Memphis du Rib) was second for driver Anthony Barrier and third was 25 meter penalized Unero Mobtaval (9g Nem) handled by Eric Raffin. Venus de Baily finished fourth. Other interesting winners this week included 8.7/1 Desir Castelets (4m Quaker Jet-Ophelie Jet) in the September 26 Paris-Vincennes Prix Valleda (purse €68,000, 2850 meters, 13 starters) timed in 1.14.3kr and reined by Franck Ouvrie.13/1 Dusty Wood (4m Goetmals Wood) was second ahead of 23/1 Defi Pierji (4g Roc Meslois). Thomas H. Hicks    

July 22, 2017 - Today, Readly Express (5m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos-Fatima Lavec), at 2/5 odds, and driven by Jorma Kontio, took the V75 Gold (150,000SEK to the winner, 2640 meters autostart) at Axevalla. The Timo Nurmos trainee is two for two in 2017 and has 16 career wins in 19 starts, now for 7,857,660SEK earned. On Track Piraten (9g Kool du Caux-Monrovia-Rite On Line) was next for driver Johnny Takter with third to Anna Mix (7f Ludo de Castelle-Ires-Tenor de Baune) driven by Kim Eriksson for trainer Sofia Aronsson. Reckless was fourth for Bjorn Goop. Race time was 1.11.7kr. The undercard included the Jonssons Mekaniskas (100,000SEK to winner 2140 meters voltstart) and the 1.13.5kr timed winner was 3.8/1 Trecciadoro Rex (5f Cantab Hall-Freedream Rex-CR Trackmaster) reined by Mika Forss for trainer Veijo Heiskanen. Sangria Knight (5f Scarlet Knight-Yahaa Brodda-Varenne) was next for trainer/driver Peter Untersteiner. Third finishing was Helena KJlipp (5f Explosive Matter-Larissa Klipp-Super Arnie) and trainer/driver Robert Bergh. Thomas H. Hicks

Readly Express and In Vain Sund took Grand Prix de l’UET elims this evening at Solvalla to round out the field for the October 14 harness racing Gr. I €400,000 European Derby at Paris-Vincennes (below) Caly Loulou - Matthieu Abrivard  Readly Express - Timo Nurmos  In Vain Sund – Daniel Redén Toseland Kyu – Vitale Ciotola Nappa Scar – Per Lennartsson Tobin Kronos – Daniel Redén Bryssel – Björn Goop Cahal de Rioults – Philippe Allaire Cuisse la Motte – Cédric Herserant Breidabliks Nubbe – Conrad Lugauer Clif du Pommeraux – Sylvain Roger The Solvalla elims, each raced over 2140 meters for a purse of 301,500SEK, went first to Readly Express (4m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream) timed in 1.12.5kr for driver Jorma Kontio and trainer Timo Nurmos. Tobin Kronos (4m Muscle Hill-Zamia FC) was second a length back for Bjorn Goop and trainer Daniel Reden with third to Copimade (4m Ganymede-Copigirl) driven by Erik Adielsson for trainer Jorgen Westholm. The second elim produced victory for In Vain Sund (4m Revenue-Staro Yasmine) with Kenneth Haugstad up for trainer Reden clocked in 1.12.2kr in the length score. Nappa Scar (4m Scarlet Knight-Butterfly Player) took second for trainer/driver Per Lennartsson ahead of Bryssel (4m Ready Cash-Spacelane) with trainer/driver Bjorn Goop teaming. Thomas H. Hicks

Readly Express (4m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos) with Jorma Kontio up for trainer Timo Nurmos, took todays Avelshimngsten The Bank Svensk Derby at Jagersro. The 2640 meter autostart Gr. I National harness racing event returned 2SEK million to the winning horse. Race time was 1.12.7kr for Readly Express, now with a 12-3-0 career slate in 15 starts and 5-1-0 this year in six outings. Branke AB and Bro Byggnads own the winner of now 5.6SEK million, off as the 1.3/1 favorite. Heavy Sound (4g Ken Warkentin-Illustre November-Viking Kronos) was second for Kenneth Haugstad and third going to Day Or Night In (4m Muscle Hill-Ellie America-Buvetier d’Aunou) with trainer Johan Untersteiner aboard. The Broline Filly Derby (Gr. I National, 2140 meters autostart, 1SEK million to the winner) went to 5.4/1 Otrobanda (4f Celebrity Secret-Greenhills Beauty-Comets Tail) clocked in 1.12.9kr for trainer/driver Peter Untersteiner. Swemas Holdings SAB own this winner, now with a slate of 4-3-0 in 11 starts. Kryssa Futura (4f Saxo de Vandel-Simb Regatta-Turbo Thrust) was second for Christoffer Eriksson and trainer Tomas Malmqvist. Third went to Tunika (4f  Zola Boko-Verona du Ling-Super Arnie) with Ulf Ohlsson up. Earlier on the program the Final Breeders Course for two year-olds went to Current Affair (2f Love You-Global Future-Lindys Crown) timed in 1.15kr for driver Bjorn Goop and trainer Tomas Malmqvist. This Gr. II International contest was raced over 1640 meters autostart with 350,000SEK to the winner, in this case the winner remains undefeated in three starts. Panamara Racing own Current Affair, that bested Summer Wein (2m Weingartner-Angel Nicole-Dahir de Prelong) driven by Erik Adielsson for trainer Malmqvist and third finishing McArthur (2m Infinitif-Millet LB-Donerail) with Michael Nimczyk up. Other interesting winners on the Jagersro card were Target Kronos (4g Raja Mirchi-Ebony Kronos-Pine Chip) in the Takter Tribute timed in 1.10.1kr for Lutfi Kolgjini over 1640 meters autostart. The ICA Malmborg Stayer over 3140 meters voltstart went to Reckless (6m Ready Cash-Hava-Supergill) that overcame a 60 meter handicap to score in 1.14.2kr for Bjorn Goop to earn 100,000SEK. The Good As Gold Minne for 100,000SEK to the winner went to Fire To the Rain (5g Yankee Glide-Adelaide Hall-Conway Hall) for Ulf Ohlsson. He was timed in 1.12.4kr over 2140 meters. Thomas H. Hicks

Well-regarded 1/10 favorite Readly Express (4m Ready Cash-Caddie Dream-Viking Kronos) took this days’ Breeders Crown V75 event for four year-olds at Kalmar, Sweden, timed in 1.12.4kr for Bjorn Goop and trainer Timo Nurmos. This event raced over 2140 meters autostart produced 70,000SEK to the winner and Readly Express now has an 8-3-0 slate in 11 career starts. The 40/1 Sugarmakesmecrazy (4g Crazed-Maple Frosting-Valley Victory) was second for Per Lennartsson and trainer Svante Bath. He one now is 4-1-2 in ten starts after not competing in 2015. He showed some good form at age two in the USA for Ake Svanstedt. 50/1 Cupido Sisu (4g Judge Joe-Dream Hanover-Pine Chip) took third for Ulf Ohlsson. Four year-old mares competed in another Breeders Crown test over 2140 meters for 70,000SEK to the winner. 3/2 favorite Spoil Me (4f Going Kronos-Mystical Ann-Kadabra) scored here in 1.13.7kr with Kenneth Haugstad up for Roger Walmann. The 13/1 Magnesia (4f Magnetic Power-Martansla-Super Arnie) ended second for Oskar J. Andersson and trainer Jorgen Westholm. 5/1 Galactica (4f Super Photo Kosmos-Hurrla Laday-Buzzin Brian) closed third for Lars Ake Soderholm. Three year-olds were next up and the Breeders Crown fillies (also 70,000SEK, 2140 meters autostart) contest went to 12.3/1 Rio Rita Face (3f Joke Face-Musclesonbroadway-Muscles Yankee) for Ulf Ohlsson and trainer Reljo Liljendahl, her second win in 2016 to go with a second in just three starts. The 2/1 favorite Ready For Money (3f Ready Cash-Savaflickan-Lord Of All) was second for Troels Andersen in this race clocked in 1.14.1kr. Third went to 10.2/1 Flight Plan (3f Scarlet Knight-Danba di Ala-Supergill) driven by Torbjorn Jansson for trainer Stefan Melander. The colt three year-olds battled over the same distance and for 70,000SEK first money and the undefeated (in seven start, four in 2016 and three last year) 2.28/1 odds Diamanten (3m Adrian Chip-Iata Kall-Ata Star L) scored in 1.13.6kr for trainer/driver Robert Bergh. The 3/2 favorite Gareth Boko (3m Make It Happen-Vanilla Boko-Pine Chip) was second for Per Lennartsson, also trainer. Third was 8.7/1 Mellby Emeralds (3g Muscle Hill-Mellby Rubin-Pine Chip) with Ulf Ohlsson up for trainer Liljendahl. Older campaigners contested the Mid-Sommers (100,000SEK first money, 2140 meters autostart) and 1/10 favorite On Track Piraten (8g Kool du Caux-Minrovia-Rite On Line) took the 1.12.6kr timed victory for driver Johnny Takter. The H.R. Stronborg trainee bested 7.4/1 Luckycharm Hanover (8m Andover Hall-Lady Luck Hanover-Donerail) reined by Orjan Kihlstom for Daniel Reden/Stall Zet. Third was 11/1 Opitqergium (8m Pine Chip-Jovelinotte-Passionnant) handled by trainer Robert Bergh. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink

September 6, 2015 - Conlight As (4m Conway Hall-Delight As-Strking Sahbra) driven by Erik Adielsson for trainer Svante Bath won today’s Gr. I National Krafft Swedish Trotting Derby (2SEK million to winner(US$236,000), 2640 meters autostart) timed in 1.13.6kr.  The winner recorded his sixth career victory in 16 starts, now for 2,783,100SEK earned, for owners Olof Brodin AB and Snogarps Gard AB. Conlight As got into the contest after 2000 meters and closed stoutly to win. Vasterbo Éclair (4m Echo-Vasterbo Flash-Spotlite Lobell) was second for Joakim Lovgren and Flex Lane (4m Federal Flex-Margo Hall-Like A Prayer) closed for third handled by Johnny Takter. From Dust To Dawn (4m From Above-Emotional Dust-Banker Hall) held gamely for fourth driven by Torbjorn Jansson, after racing in the death seat for much of contest. Serious Try was the early leader for Henrik Svensson and landed in the pocket before going inside pylons in late stretch and making a disqualifying miscue. The race fractions were as follows (1.09.5kr after 500 meters; 1.12.9kr after 1000; 1.13.8kr after 1500 and 1.14.2kr at the 2000 meter mark). Conlight As The Gr. I National Krafft Mares Swedish Derby (1SEK million to the winner (US$118,000), 2140 meters autostart) was taken by Evin Boko (4f Viking Kronos-Welat Boko-Garland Lobell) driven by Jorma Kontio for trainer Timo Nurmos. She was clocked in 1.13.1kr after making a three wide sweep after the 1500 meter mark to gain advantage from early leader Evelina Palema (4f Symphonic Hanover-Harmony Heart-Mack Lobell) that held for third driven by Erik Adielsson. Diamond River (4f Ready Cash-First Out-Lemon Dra) closed for second driven by Stefan Soderkvist with Olympia Gold and Nancy America (4f Revenue-Camargue-Supergill) were home fourth and fifth. The winner secured her sixth career victory in 13 starts and fourth win in six 2015 appearances. The winner’s second dam is Desooner Dabetter (Meadow Road-Armbro Brilliance), the family of Armbro Regina and Armbro Flight, and dam of Big Blue Kitten by Pine Chip, she the dam of Yarrah Boko 1:52.1 ($1,408,457) and Zola Boko 1:55.1 ($245,826). Stall BSM owns Evin Boko. Earlier in the card the Ahlsell Derby Classic (75,000SEK to winner, 2140 meters autostart) garnered much attention as the teamsters were former Swedish Derby winning drivers. Scellino Luis scored in this one timed in 1.13kr for Erik Adielsson, and trainer Stig H, Johansson, by a length over good finishing Lohman driven by Anders Lindqvist for trainer Robert Bergh. Steen Juul piloted T.Rx D.K. to third ahead of Spirit Real and driver Geir Vegard Gundersen for trainer Jerry Riordan. Thomas H. Hicks

It was announced over the weekend that American trotting star Corky will stay in Sweden for a couple of months. Today it was decided that Uncle Peter will also remain in Scandinavia. Uncle Peter has earned 7.8 million SEK during his career and is one of the top horses in the USA. In Scandinavia he hasn't showed full potential, finishing fifth place in the Copenhagen Cup and tiring in his Elitloppet elimination to fail qualifying for the final. Uncle Peter hopes to obtain a start in the Oslo Grand Prix. Uncle Peter will join Corky at Daniel Reden's Stable Zet where they will be trained by Tobias J. Gustafsson. Backfire (4f by Offshore Dream) and Poochai (4m Make It Happen) took tonight’s companion Gr. I International events at Aby. Gothenburg, the Drottning Silvias Pokal for four year-old mares and the Konung Gustaf V’s Pokal for four year-old males. Both carried a purse of €199,930 with the winners’ share being €99,970. Backfire scored in 1.12.6kr over 2140 meters autostart, driven by Johnny Takter for a two length victory from Air Frame and Bjorn Goop. Heavily supported D’One (4f Donato Hanover-Giant Diablo-Supergill) came from far back to be third. Summary and video replay link are shown below with official program that follows: http://abytravet.se/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/140528_aby_Web.pdf May 28, 2014 Aby Gothenburg Sweden, Drottning Silvia Pokal, Gr. I International, four year-old mares, 2140 meters autostart, 12 starters, 1.12.6kr, purse €199,939 with €99,970 to winner 1st Backfire (4f Offshore Dream-Fashion Brodde-SJ’s Caviar), Johnny Takter, owner Linne Trav AB, 11/1 odds, her eighth win in 21 starts now for earnings of 2,384,350SEK 2nd Air Frame (4f Scarlet Knight-Sunset Kosmos-SJ’s Photo), Bjorn Goop up for trainer owner Stefan Melander and Stall TZ 3rd D’One (4f Donato Hanover-Giant Diablo-Supergill), Orjan Kihlstrom for Stall Kennys and trainer Roger Wahlman The four year-old males contest ended with 6.6/1 Poochai  scoring for Erik Adielsson in 1.11.9kr over 2140 meters autostart. The son of Make It Happen (son of Conway Hall that successfully raced in the USA) rallied in the lighting lane for the win over Sir Ratzeputz and teamster Jorma Kontio. Poochai was first to lead and then settled in the pocket behind Boys Going In with Amazing Man in the death seat. Sir Ratzeputz was first to advance three wide. Poochai waited for the inside passing lane and rallied to victory. Rolex Bigi, and reinsman Anders Svanstedt, was third over and empty in the drive, ending eighth. May 28, 2014 Aby Gothenburg Sweden, Konung Gustaf V’s Pokal, Gr. I International, 2140 meters autostart, 12 starters, purse €199,939 with €99.970 to winner (six places paid), 1.11.9kr 1st Poochai (4m Make It Happen-In Vino Veritas-Express Ride), Erik Adielson for trainer Svante Bath, owner Roxy Horses KB, 6.6/1 odds, his sixth win in 19 starts for earnings of 1,911,460SEK 2nd Sir Ratzeputz (4m Love You-Celebrate-Lindy’s Crown), Jorma Kontio up for Timo Nurmos trainer and owner Thors Trading AB 3rd Boys Going In (4m Going Kronos-Namura-Buvetier d’Aunou), Fredrik Persson trainer/driver The fast class event for older trotters was the Algot Scotts Minne. Magic Tonight set the track record of 1.09.3kr for Orjan Kihlstrom, taking advantage of the early fast pace set by I’m The Answer. Favored Solvato made a miscue early. May 28, 2014 Aby Gothenburg Sweden, Algot Scotts Minne, purse €21,762, distance 1640 meters autostart, 10 starters, 1.09.3kr a track record 1st Magic Tonight (5m Andover Hall-Miss Possessed-Self Possessed), Orjan Kihlstrom up for trainer Roger Wahlman, owner 2nd AB Svensk Reklamfinans, his 13th victory in 42 starts for 4,767,831SEK earned, off at 1.8/1 odds 3rd Obi Wan (8g Ganymede-Hejsa Reerstrup-Speedy Herve), Flemming Jensen trainer/driver 4th Nouvelle Pelle (11g Juliano Star-Nouvelle Isabell-Messerschmitt), Jorgen Sjunnesson up for Flemming Jensen trainer I’m The Answer was the rapid pacesetter and faded to fifth, Solvato was offstride early and was last. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com    

Mellby Viking (6m Viking Kronos-Neomi de Lou-Extreme Dream) won today's Gr. II International UET Masters Series Harper Hanovers at Solvalla. This co-feature event was raced over the stayer distance of 3140 meters (just short of two miles) turning start, distance handicapped, for a purse to the winner of 500,000SEK ($68,000 US). Jorma Kontio drove the winner for trainer Timo Nurmos in a Swedish record time of 1.12.5kr for the distance. Mellby Viking won for the third straight time in 2014, in his only starts, and for the 15th time in a career of 24 outings for earnings now of 1,627,000SEK. Mellby Gard AB of Malmo owns Mellby Viking. Time Machine (5m Super Arnie-Union Highness-Pythagoras) was second for trainer/driver Jorgen Westholm. The race has a storied history from its 1968 beginning. Past winners include Yarrah Boko. Etain Royal, Queen L, Tibur, Wiretapper (Soren Nordin aboard) and Kentucky Fibber. The race record prior to today was 1.13.4kr in 2007 by the Thierry Duvaldestin steered Milord de Melleray. Today's replay can be seen using link below Other winners on the last part of the Solvalla card today included: Ni Talar Bra Latin (4g Kiss Francis-Fattiga Lisa-Supergill), 1.11.7kr for Peter Ingves over2140 meters autostart, his sixth win in nine career starts Kiss Me Kemp (5f Striking Sahbra-Badabingbadaboo-Yankee Glide), 1.12.8kr for Orjan Kihlstrom over 2140 meters voltstart Olympic Kronos (6m Viking Kronos-Ebony Kronos-Pine Chip), 1.11.5kr for trainer/driver Lutfi Kolgjini as he continued a great day for Stable Kolgjini (four wins), his 16th career victory in 38 starts for 1,648,385SEK earned as he defeated a pair of US breds, Mr. Chicago (by Cantab Hall) and Magiccarpetride (by Angus Hall) Delphine Flevo (4f Sugar Trader-Volga River-Yankee Mustang), 1.12.6kr over 2140 meters autostart for Rick Ebbinge on dq of race winner Rumba Jet (4f Naglo-Ticket to Ride-Nevele Pride) and Pietro Gubellini. The winner has hit the board in all nine career starts with four victories. Shes So Lovely (5f Andover Hall-Lovely-Yankee Glide), Mika Forss up in 1.14.2kr over 2140 meters autostart, her eighth career win in 34 starts Action on Elitloppet 2014 day starts at 10:20am local time in Stockholm with the drivers challenge match. First elim of the Elitloppet is set for 2:55pm local off time with the final at 5:35pm. (11:35am USA eastern time). by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

Sweden provides an opportunity for stayers to gain valuable UET Masters Series points at Orebro on Saturday night, also doubling as the last leg of the V75. Swedish Masterskap winner On Track Piraten off a 40 metre handicap to the front runners is the class runner in the race. The altered son of French stallion Kool du Caux, is a group one winner over a staying distance having won Germany's top race last year, the Grosser Preis Von Deutschland, at Hamburg over the 2720m distance. Hans R Stromberg's gelding is also the winner of the CL Mullers Memorial over 2640m at Jagersro and the Masterskap or Swedish Championships at Aby over the same distance, both races carrying group two status. His sire Kool de Caux was second in the Prix d'Amerique (2700m) but also had a good turn of speed with victories in the Group one Copenhagen Cup (2011m) and the Prix de France (2100m) in a stellar career in which he won 1.5 million euro and took a record of 1.09.8 (1.52.2MR). "The Pirate's" major opposition will come from the likes of last year's winner New Line a Danish-bred son of King Conch who was trained in the victory by Ake Svanstedt, who of course is now resident in the United States but has transferred the horse to son Anders' stable. New Line has true staying credentials, not only winning this event last year but placing in the Harper Hanovers Lopp, the staying test on Elitloppet weekend, and the Malmo Stads Pris, another 3km marathon. Another with claims is Mellby Viking, the royally bred son of Viking Kronos, who relishes the longer distance. He has a super French pedigree, being from the family of Romee, the foundation mare for a family which includes Prix du Cornulier winner Dream With Me, Indy de Vive, the sire of Ready Cash, Italian Derby winner Daguet Rapide - another highly successful sire - Lazio du Bourg, who won the Criterium des 3 Ans, and Giesolo de Lou, who won just shy of 2 million euro to name but a few. Mellby VIking is very lightly raced, with just 22 starts for 13 wins and two placings, but 3 of the wins are at this distance, and one suspects trainer Timo Nurmos has some choice French missions ahead for the six-year-old stayer who is off the 20m handicap. Porthos Amok is also one who could figure prominently. He is a son of Orlando Vici, a French sire whose son Un Mec D'Heripre is one of the rising stars in his native land. Orlando Vici has also Great Success in Sweden, with Pato a TravKriterium and TravDerby winner while Porthos Amok, himself, was second in last year's Swedish TravDerby. Another Swedish Travderby winner Beau Mec is actually in the race. Robert Bergh's a son of Jag de Bellouet, one of the true greats of the French scene, winning 4.4million euros on the back of victories in both the Prix d'Amerique and Prix Cornulier, the top races in France in harness and under saddle, and each race of the French triple crown. Beau Mec has won twice in France but apart from his Group one Travderby success, has largely been a bit part player since that win as a 4YO. OREBRO INTERNATIONAL 03/05/14 SE Group II Int UET Masters Series 3140 all 91 000 1 Kemas Magic (h Kadabra - Gold Dust) Dr: Fredrik Persson Tr: Fredrik Persson 3140 2 Super Photogenic (g Super Photo Kosmos - Foreign Fortune) Dr: Niclas Stenqvist Tr: Bo Hellkvist 3140 3 Diamond of Ace (h Turbo Sund - Catch the Moment) Dr: Leif Witasp Tr: Leif Witasp 3140 4 Corleone Shark (g Capetown Hall - Charlatan Shark) Dr: Pekka Korpi Tr: Risto Airaksinen 3140 5 Ciske de Rat (g Castleton Bass - Keetje Tippel) Dr: Björn Goop Tr: Bas Crebas 3140 6 Bar Plombier (g Tony Oaks - Francine Bar) Dr: Torbjörn Jansson Tr: Eric Martinsson 3140 7 Jupiter Rodney (h Skogans Orlov - Judy Rodney) Dr: Palle Günther Tr: Bo Örberg 3140 8 On Hold (g Valley Victor - Kill Time) Dr: Erik Adielsson Tr: Berne Gustafsson 3160 9 Narold Vox (g Orlando Vici - Bonnie Vox) Dr: Ulf Ohlsson Tr: Krister Jakobsson 3160 10 Sem Jafet (g S J's Photo - Persilja) Dr: Peter Untersteiner Tr: Peter Untersteiner 3160 11 Mellby Viking (h Viking Kronos - Naomi de Lou) Dr: Jorma Kontio Tr: Timo Nurmos 3160 12 On Track Piraten (g Kool du Caux - Monrovia) Dr: Hans R Strömberg Tr: Hans R Strömberg 3180 13 Beau Mec (h Jag de Bellouet - Extreme Lady) Dr: Robert Bergh Tr: Robert Bergh 3180 14 New Line (g King Conch - På'en Igen Frökjär) Dr: Anders Svanstedt Tr: Anders Svanstedt 3180 15 Porthos Amok (h Orlando Vici - Baroness Amok) Dr: Örjan Kihlström Tr: Stefan Melander 3180 by David Sanders, for Harnesslink.com

Trainer Noel Daley is hoping for a pleasant year from Delightful Dragon. A 3-year-old filly pacer, Delightful Dragon was slow to make it to the races last season because of issues with her knees but finished the campaign by winning the $394,950 Three Diamonds Stakes on Nov. 30 at Meadowlands Racetrack. Overall, the homebred daughter of Bettor’s Delight-Little Miss Dragon won three of eight starts and earned $227,329 for owner Adam Victor & Son Stable. “She’s come back very sound,” Daley said. “She can go right with the top ones, I think. She’s a big strong filly. She’s got the will and the desire. She didn’t have a tough year by any means. A few of the speedy ones last year had a lot of racing; it’s always interesting to see what comes back.” Delightful Dragon made her first start on Aug. 19, winning a conditioned race at Yonkers in 1:56.2. She was off the board in her next five appearances, but suffered in part from tough draws. She got post 10 in her division of the Bluegrass Stakes, where she finished fourth, and post nine in her elimination for the Breeders Crown, where she finished eighth. “We always liked her; we always thought she had a lot of ability,” Daley said. “She had no luck a few times. She drew outside in the Bluegrass and (driver) Mike Lachance said afterward that she was the best 90-1 shot he’d ever driven. She drew the outside in her elimination for the Breeders Crown, which was a death sentence. After that, we tried to set her up for the Three Diamonds.” Delightful Dragon won a conditioned race at Yonkers in early November and then qualified twice to prep for the Three Diamonds, which she captured by a neck over Act Now in 1:52.4 at odds of 9-1. “It worked out,” Daley said. “She got a good trip, but she deserved to win that race. She was definitely good enough; it wasn’t a shock to us at all.” Delightful Dragon’s mom, Little Miss Dragon, was a multiple-stakes winner during her racing days. Her first foal was a colt, but he lacked, in Daley’s words, “ambition.” “She’s the opposite,” Daley said. “She’s very nice to deal with, lovely to be around, wants to do it. Everything about her is good.” In addition to Delightful Dragon, Daley is getting a number of other horses ready to return to action. Here is a synopsis of three others to keep an eye on. Demoiselle Hanover: A 3-year-old half-sister to 2007 Horse of the Year Donato Hanover, she was winless in four starts last season. The trotter is by stallion Muscle Hill out of the mare D Train and is owned by Timo Nurmos’ Timot Stable. “She only had a couple races; she had a bunch of issues,” Daley said. “She’s got enough ability to go with them if she behaves herself. If (last year’s division leaders) come back and improve, they’re obviously going to be very good. But you can’t worry about anyone else’s horses. I’m happy with the way she’s been and she’s definitely got enough go if she can step it up a little.” Outburst: A 3-year-old male trotter, he won five of 10 races last season and finished worse than third only once. He trotted a world-record 1:53.1 in winning his division of the Bluegrass Stakes. He is owned by Daley, Adam Victor & Son Stable, Kemppi Stables, and Mirva Bogucki. “He’s a nice horse,” Daley said. “I don’t think he’s a top three or four horse, but I think he’s a top 10 horse if he comes back as good as he was. If you can be a top 10 horse you can make a lot of money if you pick your spots and get lucky now and then. There’s so much money out there and the good ones can’t be in all of them. If you can win one decent one, you can do alright there.” Cedar Dove: She was the Dan Patch Award winner for best 3-year-old filly trotter in 2011. She has won 14 of 50 lifetime races and earned $1.17 million. Last year, she won a division of the Miss Versatility (in a dead heat with Maven) and finished second in the Breeders Crown and Armbro Flight. She is owned by Bill Weaver. “So far she’s been really good,” Daley said. “I just have to make sure I don’t have her ready too early because she seems to fade away as the year goes on. Keeping weight on her is her biggest issue. But so far so good; I’m real happy with her. She won’t race in too much else other than those (major stakes) races. Canada seems to wipe her out, so I’ll probably do the Armbro Flight but won’t go for the early Miss Versatility this year. She could qualify in probably a week or two.” by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications

The honeymoon is not over for Bill Mack when it comes to harness racing. Mack, a breeder/owner in central New Jersey, sends 3-year-old filly trotter Sally Savannah into Wednesday's third round of the Bobby Weiss Series at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. Sally Savannah finished second in her Weiss division last week and was third in the opening round. Driven by George Napolitano Jr. for trainer Neal Ehrhart, the filly is 9-2 on the morning line. The 71-year-old Mack has owned horses since retiring from his job as a criminal court administrator for the state of New Jersey. Most of his horses have "Savannah" in their names, which is a nod to the city where Mack and his wife Lorraine spent their honeymoon. "(Sally Savannah) is racing very well," Mack said. "I like her determination; she just seems to like to race. I'm hoping to have a nice year with her." A homebred daughter by stallion Equinox Bi out of Mack's mare Sassy Savannah, Sally Savannah won two of nine races last year and earned $42,512. She won a division of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Stallion Series, finished second to world champion Designed To Be in a division of the Pennsylvania All Stars and capped her 2-year-old season by finishing third in her division of the Keystone Classic. "She finished last year well and she's back where she left off," Ehrhart said. "We toyed around with the idea of putting her in the regular sire stakes last year, but thought it might be pushing it. It worked out because she did well in the Stallion Series. "I don't know yet where we'll put her this year. I'd rather be a star in the Stallion Series than put her in over her head. A lot of the top 3-year-old (trotting) fillies are going to come out of Pennsylvania. Maybe she'll get there, but she'll let us know." Sally Savannah, who was named by one of Mack's granddaughters because she was naming all her dolls "Sally" at that time, also is eligible to the Arden Downs Stakes and Currier & Ives this year. "This series should be a good prep for the sire stakes," Ehrhart said. "She's been facing a lot of 4-year-olds (in the Weiss) and that's what has impressed me. "This horse is a lot like her mother, and that's a good thing," the trainer added. "George Napolitano said (Sally Savannah) is a very smart horse. She can size up a race and know where she needs to be." Sassy Savannah was a rare yearling purchase for Mack. He bought her for $6,000 under the name Strapless at the 2002 Standardbred Horse Sale. Sassy Savannah won a division of the Arden Downs as a 2-year-old and a Landmark Stakes at age 3, finishing her career with $101,242. "She was sick as a dog at the sale," Ehrhart said. "That might have hurt her (price in the auction), but it didn't hurt her down the road." Mack and Ehrhart have been a team for nearly 15 years. Mack found Ehrhart through an advertisement in Hoof Beats magazine. "He's a nice person," Mack said. "He's easy to deal with. He's done I think as well as could be expected with my horses." Said Ehrhart of Mack, "He's the epitome of what a good racehorse owner should be. He cares about the horses and is patient and never puts them in positions they shouldn't be in. We have a trust and he has confidence in me. He leaves me to do my thing and we've held our own." The two hope to continue the success with Sally Savannah. She faces six rivals Wednesday in the Weiss Series, which is for 3- and 4-year-old female trotters that entered 2014 with fewer than three career wins or $40,000 in lifetime purses. Clementine Dream, who finished second in the Super Bowl Series final in January, is the 5-2 favorite. Connie Keeper, who has finished second in both her Weiss races, is the 2-1 choice in the first division. Perfect Alliance and Take The Money, both undefeated this year out of the stable of trainer Julie Miller, are skipping this week's races after winning their starts in the previous two rounds. "It's a lot stronger series than I had anticipated," Mack said. "I think she'd have to hit the board (Wednesday) and next week to make the final. But I always have high hopes for my horses. Hopefully she'll do alright." by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications

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