DOVER, Del. --- The 18th renewal of the $400,000 (est) Progress Pace at Dover Downs is the highlight of the first full month of the track's 45th season. The Progress Pace is the signature event of the 2013 Dover Downs' "Novemberfest of Racing." The Progress Pace features the sport's leading three-year-olds in training in a two-week event. First, a $35,000 elimination division on Nov. 10 with the top eight finishers return for a $284,160 final on Nov. 17. Vegas Vacation, driven by Brian Sears, scored a 1:48.3 victory in this year's Matron Final. The gelding was favorite for the Progress Pace elim., but did not come out of the Matron, "100 percent," thus was scratched. Twilight Bonfire, a 20-1 longshot from post 8 with Tim Tetrick driving, pulled a major surprise in the $35,000 elim by nipping Sunshine Beach by half a neck. The Progress Pace Final on Dec. 1 is the richest race in Delaware harness racing this year. Progress Pace history The Progress Pace was created by Dover Downs' CEO Denis McGlynn in the fashion of a former state of Delaware sports' tradition - The Battle of the Brandywine - formerly the showcase event of ill-fated Brandywine Raceway. Over the years, Most of the sports leading drivers, owners and stables have participated in the Progress Pace. Hall of Fame drivers include three-time winners John Campbell and Ron Pierce, Mike Lachance, Cat Manzi, Dave Palone and David Miller. Luc Ouellette also drove three winners while Bret Pelling trained three Progress Pace champions. Sampson Street Stable has shared in three Progress Pace champions, Newman Racing is the only other with more than one winner. The first Progress Pace was carded in 1996 with a $100,000 final. The winner was Armbro Operative, owned by Tom Walsh, Jr. and Dave McDuffy, driven by Mike Lachance. It was the first of three Progress Pace winners conditioned by Brett Pelling. Pelling also trained the winners of the next two winners of the event, when Dream Away, owned by Canadian horsemen Marvin Katz, Sam Goldband and Al Libfeld won the 1997 edition and Crown Jewel Stable's Browning Blue Chip took 1998 laurels. Both winners were driven by John Campbell. Luc Ouellette drove Jeff Snyder's Royalflush Hanover to his first Progress Pace titles. The gelding overtook Grinfromeartoear on the backstretch and pulled off to win the 1999 title. The following season, Ouellette came back to drive 2000 winner Powerful Toy, owned by Newman Racing Stable, Sampson Street and Dodge A Bullet stables. Ron Pierce made the winner's circle in the 2001 event driving Peruvian Hanover for owners Sidney Korn and Alvin Jacobson. Art Major beat stablemate McArdle to win the 2002 edition. Owned by Deena Frost, Jerry Silva, Sampson Street and TLP stables, Art Major was the third Progress Pace champion driven by John Campbell, In 2003, for the second straight year and third time in Progress Pace history, Radar Sign, a colt owned in part by Sampson Street Stable and Newman Racing Stable, driven by Ouellette, won the final. The 2004 winner was longshot Holborn Hanover, with George Brennan driving for trainer Mark Harder and owners John Fielding and Canamerica Capital Corp. Holborn Hanover became the first sub-150 Progress Pace winner posting a come-from-behind 1:49.3f victory. In 2005, Gryffindor, became the first Delaware-owned and trained winner. After being purchased by Three Point Acres in time to win the Messenger Stake at Harrington Raceway, the sophomore won the 10th Progress Pace wire-to-wire in 1:50 with David Miller in the sulky. The purse was the event's all-time highest, $394,120. Another Delaware owned and conditioned colt, Total Truth, was the 2006 Progress Pace champion. The colt owned by Only Money and Teague Inc., the first of two straight for Hall of Fame driver Ron Pierce. Pierce returned to take 2007 Progress Pace in upset fashion. Trained by Robby Siegelman for The Cheyenne Gang, Ghee House rolled down the lane for a 1:50.4 upset victory to take the 12th edition. In November 2008, overlooked at 32-1, Cat Manzi drove Bettor Sweet to a surprise 1:52.1f victory, the second richest Progress Pace boasting a $390,000 purse. Two locally owned horses Rudy Rednose and Badlands Nitro, both trained by George Teague, finished second and third respectively. Vertical Horizon and Jim Morrill Jr. were the winning 1:50.4 team, for the 2009 edition. In 2010, Yannick Gingras guided Rockin Image to an impressive 1:50.3 victory. The 2011 winner was Westwardho Hanover, a 1:49.1 performance piloted by Dave Palone. Heston Blue Chip completed an outstanding Fall campaign to win the 2012 Progress Pace with Tim Tetrick in the bike, in event winning time of 1:49. Progress Pace Champions Year Purse Winner (Driver) Win Time 1996 $100,000 Armbro Operative (Mike Lachance) 1:53f 1997 $100,000 Dream Away (John Campbell) 1:54f 1998 $225,000 Browning Blue Chip (John Campbell)1:51.2f 1999 $225,000 Royalflush Hanover (Luc Ouellette) 1:51.2f 2000 $228,000 Powerful Toy (Luc Ouellette) 1:52.1f 2001 $337,100 Peruvian Hanover (Ron Pierce) 1:52.3f 2002 $335,000 Art Major (John Campbell) 1:51f 2003 $350,060 Radar Sign (Luc Ouellette) 1:51.4f 2004 $345,900 Holborn Hanover (George Brennan) 1:49.3f 2005 $394,120 Gryffindor (David Miller) 1:50f 2006 $348,900 Total Truth (Ron Pierce) 1:52.2f 2007 $350,900 Ghee House (Ron Pierce) 1:50.4f 2008 $390,000 Bettor Sweet (Cat Manzi) 1:51.2f 2009 $350,000 Vertical Horizon (Jim Morrill Jr.) 1:50.4f 2010 $320,000 Rockin Image (Yannick Gingras) 1:50.3f 2011 $330,000 Westwardho Hanover (Dave Palone) 1:49.1f 2012 $270,000 Heston Blue Chip (Tim Tetrick) 1:49f - event record by Marv Bachrad for Dover Downs
Delaware, OH --- All roads led to Ohio as owners and trainers from 29 states, Canada, and Europe flocked to the Delaware County Fairgrounds for the 66th annual Fall Blooded Horse Sale. Opening day featured nearly 25% of Ohio’s total yearling crop, along with over 100 Indiana-breds and a large number of Pennsylvania, Ontario, and New York breds. The strong catalogue of slots enhanced sire stakes eligibles drove prices to a record high. The next three days contained 198 2-year-olds, 297 3-year-olds, 87 weanlings and hundreds of raceway horses and broodmares. The top priced yearling and ultimate sale topper was an Always A Virgin sister to Indiana champion Color’s A Virgin. Brown Color was purchased from the Emerald Highlands consignment by Dan Shetler for $43,000. Next in line was an Ohio-bred Feelin Friskie colt from the Midland Acres consignment purchased by Burke Racing Stable LLC for $42,000. Spring Haven Farm sold a Total Truth brother to top Indiana colt Totally Kissed for $37,000 and Walnut Hall Ltd sold an Ontario bred Deweycheatumnhowe filly for $32,000. Broodmares were led by the young Andover Hall prospect, Ladyfinger 3,1:59.2f, that was purchased by Black Creek Farm in Indiana for $28,000 from Marty Wollam. Hoosier Standardbred Farm stepped up at $15,000 for Sexpot Hall in foal to Deweycheatunmhowe from the Walnut Hall Ltd consignment. That farm also provided the top weanlings, a Conway Hall filly from the family of two $1 million earners and a Groton Hall half-brother to two 1:54 trotters, that each brought $20,000. Competitive racehorses are always in demand and five of them shared the spotlight at $20,000 each. Nidaros, a Muscle Yankee non-winners of two consigned by Kjell Magne Andersen, was purchased by Jeff Clark of Maryland. Indiana Sires competitor, Fancy Colt, left Emerald Highlands Farm on a bid from Red Shaw in Ohio. Competitive $20,000 claimer Darth Quaider was purchased by Steve Richard of Massachusetts. The rugged raceway mare Athleticlyinclined, with $278,575 lifetime earnings, was picked up by John Mungillo of New York from Burke Racing Stable LLC. And Dan Kennedy added the Open pacer Lost Jewels to his racehorses in preparation for the December opening of Hard Rock Racino Northfield Park. Complete sale results are available at www.bloodedhorse.com. The Blooded Horse Sale Company holds quarterly mixed sales at the home of the Little Brown Jug in Delaware, Ohio The next sale is February 10-11, 2014. Entries close around January 10. by Dot Morgan for Blooded Horse Sale
Melton trainer/driver Lance Justice’s 7-Y-0 Christian Cullen/Flying Flo gelding Alchemy showed vast improvement to land the Graeme Lang Free For All for C7 or better class over 2240 metres at Tabcorp Park Melton on Thursday November 21. One of four runners from the Justice stable – the others being Dominus Vobiscum, The Smiler and Because I Can, Alchemy which had been racing in much weaker grade over the past few weeks was sent forward to cross the pole marker Giveusagrim shortly after the start. With a number of more fancied runners making forward moves including Jaccka Clive, Youranut, Mustang Mach and Broadways Best prior to the bell with Youranut first up since July occupying the breeze for the final circuit, leaving Mustang Mach on a limb three wide with Broadways Best on his back and Jaccka Clive one/one after surprisingly handing over the death-seat. Tackled strongly by Youranut on straightening, Alchemy ($16.80) fought back like a caged tiger to gain the day by a head after being momentarily headed in a rate of 1-57 (last half 56.2 – quarter 27.2), with Broadways Best third after peeling wide halfway up the running. Brother John Justice was also a winner on the program, snaring the Reg Cooper Claiming Pace over 2240 metres with $56.80 chance Whodareswins, a 7-Y-0 daughter of Presidential Ball and Mumtaz Mahal who registered her first success since July 2012 when successful at Spreyton (Tasmania). Given a sweet passage from the pole trailing the pacemaker Astral Flight after leading out, Whodareswins in a punishing finish prevailed by half head in 1-58.8 after using the sprint lane to defeat Astral Flight trained by sister Joanne Justice with Brian Gath in the sulky, with Run Forrest close up in third place after racing in the open from the bell. Bendigo’s Matt Gath was in the winners stall when promising Yankee Spider/Kingsford Ado 4-Y-0 mare Ifu Seek Flight greeted the judge in the Gus Underwood Trotters Mobile for T1 & T2 class over 1720 metres in a rate of 2-03.2. Enjoying an easy trip from the pole following the pacemaker Marios Dream, Gath angled Ifu Seek Flight away from the inside on straightening and she finished best to score by 2 metres in advance of Mallee Trapper which raced wide from the bell. Drop Us A Line ran her usual honest race to finish third after trailing the winner and using the sprint lane. Raced by Michael Taranto of Seelite Windows & Doors fame, Ifu Seek Flight has raced 12 times for 4 wins. Rochester trainer Mark Thompson has an impeccable record when taking a horse to the races and landed the Rob Merola 3-Y-0 Pace over 2240 metres with Total Truth/Karamea Toastime filly Lies. With stable reinsperson Ellen Tormey in the sulky, Lies raced by Mark and wife Sue having her first outing since July, led throughout from the pole, defeating Geoff Webster’s Tuscan Breeze which shadowed her and Phoebe Jack (three back the markers) in a rate of 2-01.5. Parwan part-owner/trainer Jaime Madruga combined with Gavin Lang to snare the Gunbower Cup Sunday Pace for C3 & C4 class over 2240 metres with 5-Y-0 D M Dilinger/Jaja gelding Amazing Kano who can put a run in every so often. Despite racing in the open from gate five outside Discrimination, Amazing Kano surged clear on turning to win by 6.4 metres in 2-00 even over Nimble Jack off a three wide trail last lap on the back of the third placegetter Jasmine Sheffield. Gisborne’s Brendan Said provided a shock winner in 6-Y-0 Jaguar Cam/Meadow Glory mare Dainty Cloud who took out the Lisa Miles Pace for C2 class over 1720 metres in a rate of 1-57.4. Taking advantage of a mares concession, Dainty Cloud was given every opportunity one/one from gate two, with Lance Justice’s Medonc crossing This Is Your Life shortly after the start leaving Our Miss Vivienne in the breeze. Taken into the clear halfway up the running, Dainty Cloud ($42.80) finished too well for a game Our Miss Vivienne, scoring by 1.1 metres, with Medonc third. Geoff Webster and Emmett Brosnan combined to land the Harness Breeders (Vic) Pace for C1 class over 1720 metres with ultra consistent 4-Y-0 Bettors Delight/Big Time Babe mare Bit Of A Babe, leading all of the way from gate four in accounting for Union Belle (one/two) and Lady Suffragette which raced in the open from the bell. The mile rate 1-57.5. By Len Baker
The last yearling sale of the season drew a record crowd for the first day of the 66th Annual Fall Blooded Horse Sale. Monday featured 346 yearlings including nearly 25% of the Ohio crop and 120 Indiana breds. There were also large numbers of Ontario, Pennsylvania, and New York breds along with a handful of very scarce Kentucky breds. The strong catalogue of slots enhanced sires stakes eligibles drove prices to a record high. An Always A Virgin filly, Brown Color, topped the day at $43,000. Consigned by Emerald Highlands Farm the full sister to 2013 Indiana Champion Color’s A Virgin was purchased by Dan Shetler. Midland Acres brought a large consignment of Ohio breds by the leading sires Feelin Friskie and Chip Chip Hooray. Among those, Over Friskie, was purchased by Burke Racing Stable LLC for $42,000, Ed Telle signed the ticket on Feelin Shady for 34,000, and Lantern’s Chip went to Rich Lombardo for $32,000. The Spring Haven Farm consignment was led by a Total Truth brother to the top Indiana colt Totally Kissed at $37,000 and the Feelin Friskie filly Friskie Buckeye at $36,000, purchased by Kirk Nichols and Bruce Soulsby, respectively. Charisma Hall, a gorgeous Deweycheatumnhowe filly, was purchased by Michael Andrew of Maine from the Walnut Hall Ltd consignment for $32,000. The Walnut Hall Ltd reduction also features a large, attractive group of weanlings and in foal mares on Wednesday. The Blooded Horse Sale continues Tuesday through Thursday with over 1100 horses, including 198 two year olds, 297 three year olds, 87 weanlings and hundreds of raceway horses and broodmares. The catalogue and sale results are available online at www.bloodedhorse.com. by Jerry Haws for Blooded Horse Sale
ANDERSON, Ind.-October 26, 2013-Just one week after hosting the $1 million Hoosier Champions night, Hoosier Park continued the stakes action with an exciting 14-race card on Saturday, October 26. In its' 20th season of live harness racing, Hoosier Park hosted divisions of the Madison County and Circle City Stakes for two and three-year-olds for the first time ever. E L Titan and Riina Rekila kicked off the stakes action with a 1:57.1 score in the opening division of the $44,950 Madison County stakes for two-year-old colt and gelding trotters. Using a sharp, front running effort, the son of Muscle Hill was able to hold off a late charge from Justice Jet and Ed Hensley to score his third win of the season. Owned by Erkki Laakkonen, E L Titan is trained by Riina Rekila and has now amassed $93,139 during his freshman season. The recently crowned Indiana Sire Stakes champion, Rose Run Parker followed suit in the second split of the $45,250 Madison County stakes action for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings with a 1:58.2 victory. With Ricky Macomber Jr. in the bike, Rose Run Parker was able to track down horses late in the lane to win by two lengths. Sired by Jailhouse Jesse, Rose Run Parker extended his win streak to five as he notched his ninth win of the season. Sweetnsinful and Sam Widger scored in the only division of the $83,600 Madison County Stakes for two-year-old pacing fillies in 1:54. Widger sent the American Ideal filly to the front from the start and never looked back. Trained by Homer Hochstetler, Sweetnsinful scored her fourth win in nine starts this season and sent her bankroll over the $200,000 mark. The freshman trotting fillies were up next and Kween Mightus broke her maiden in a big kind of way taking her $42,550 split of the Madison County Stakes. Driven by Hoosier Park's leading driver, Tyler Smith, Kween Mightus was sent to the front and reached the wire in 1:57.3 to finish two lengths in front of the field. Trained by Krista Williams, the two-year-old daughter of Earl of Stormont notched her first win in 11 seasonal outings. Luck is All Ineed and Trace Tetrick took the second split of the stakes action for two-year-old trotting fillies with a 1:58 victory. Trained by Tom Harmer, the Muscle Mass filly benefitted from a pocket trip to score her third win of the season from eight starts. Luck is All Ineed sent her bankroll over $131,178 for her connections, Greg McNair and Tom Harmer. Three splits of the Circle City Stakes for three-year-old trotting colts were contested and it was King Mufasa who reigned supreme with a 1:56.3 romp. With Hall of Famer Dave Palone in the sulky, King Mufasa extended his win streak to five in his Hoosier Park debut. Sired by Powerful Emotion, King Mufasa is trained by Mike Brink and owned by Mystical Marker Farms and H.W. Wright. Punxsutawney and Pete Wrenn turned a sharp, front running effort into a 1:54.4 score in the second split of the Circle City stakes action. Sired by Glidemaster, Punxsutawney scored his fourth win of the season from 14 outings. Owned by Jerry Graham, Punxsutawney is trained by John Butenschoen and now sports a seasonal bankroll of $156,988. Pine Credit and Marcus Miller took the final split of the stakes action for three-year-old colt trotters with a 1:55.4 victory. Trained by Erv Miller, the son of Credit Winner was able to find late racing room in the stretch to score his third win of the season. That'll Be The Rei and Mike Micallef extended their win streak to four with a 1:51.3 score in the opening division of the $40,350 Circle City stakes for three-year-old pacing colts. The Michigan champion is trained by Mike Micallef and has won 15 of 22 seasonal starts. Owned by Daniel Courtemanche, That'll Be The Rei has earned $185,242 through two seasons of racing. Silver Devil and Jason Dillander scored a 21-1 upset in the second division of the $40,350 Circle City stakes for three-year-old colt and gelding pacers. Rallying from well off the pace in the stretch, Silver Devil used a :26.0 final panel to score his ninth win of the season in 1:53.1. Trained by Nick Giberson, the sophomore son of Duneside Perch sent his career bankroll over $50,000 with the victory. Totally Kissed and Sam Widger followed suit and pulled a slight upset in the first split of the stakes action for two-year-old pacing colts with a 1:52.1 score. The freshman son of Total Truth got up in the final strides to score his third win of the season in a lifetime best effort. Kingofthejungle continued the upset trend and scored a 14-1 upset in his split of the $49,300 Madison County stakes for two-year-old pacing colts. Driven by Pete Wrenn, Kingofthejungle rallied from well off the pace to score in a lifetime best effort of 1:52.3. Trained by Dirk Simpson, the two-year-old gelding is sired by Well Said has now won 4 of 12 lifetime outings. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday-Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:30 p.m. The 160-day, all harness racing meet began on April 2 and will be conducted through November 9. Emily Gaskin
ANDERSON, Ind.—August 6, 2013—Hoosier Park Racing & Casino played host to a quartet of $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire Stakes on Tuesday, August 6 as the 2013 crop of freshman pacing colts and fillies opened their Indiana Gold Sire Stakes series in impressive fashion. The fastest mile of the night was produced in the opening round of the Indiana Gold Sire Stakes for two-year-old pacing colts as Always B Miki stormed home a winner in 1:53.1, a lifetime best performance. With Pete Wrenn at the lines, Always B Miki was able to overcome a miscue at the start to win by five and a half lengths in front of Next Thing Smoke’n and Tyler Smith. The 1:53.1 score was just one second shy of the Hoosier Park’s track record for two-year-old pacing geldings. Trained by Joe Holloway, Always B Miki notched his second win from three seasonal outings while sending his bankroll over the $20,000 mark for his connections. Doctor Carter followed suit in the second split of the Indiana Sire Stakes action for two-year-old pacing colts and was piloted by Trace Tetrick to a 1:53.4 lifetime best score. Sired by Total Truth, Doctor Carter was able to take advantage of a pocket trip and hold off a late charge from Keiths Studio Art to notch his third victory of the season. As the public’s second choice, Doctor Carter returned $11.60 to his backers at the window. Trained by Steve Carter, Doctor Carter has now won three of four lifetime outings while earning $25,000 lifetime. Indiana’s two-year-old pacing fillies were also out in full force and made a good showing through two $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire Stakes divisions. Always Dee One and Ricky Macomber Jr. rallied from well off the pace to score in the opening division in 1:54.3. Dismissed at 10-1, Always Dee One found her best strides late in the lane to win by two lengths over Victoria Ivy and Jason Dillander. Trained by Ron Burke, the rookie filly notched her maiden breaking win from three seasonal outings. Sired by Always A Virgin, Always Dee One has now earned over $19,000 for her connections of Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, and Frank Baldachino. Color’s A Virgin and Jason Dillander used a sharp, front running score to pull the upset in the final division of the sire stakes action for two-year-old pacing fillies. Trained by Brian Brown, the daughter of Always A Virgin cruised around Hoosier Park’s seven-eighths mile oval in 1:54.4 to score her maiden breaking victory. Using a: 27.3 final panel, Color’s A Virgin held of a late charge from Tough Rose and Sam Widger to finish a length in front of her rivals. The rookie filly has now earned over $18,000 from two starts for her connections at Emerald Highlands Farm. The second leg of the Indiana Gold Sire Stakes for two-year-old pacing fillies will continue on Tuesday, August 20 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. The second division for the two-year-old pacing colts will be the featured attraction on Wednesday, August 21. Both of the four leg series will culminate with a $200,000 final slated for September 11 at Hoosier Park. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Wednesday, August 7 with a 14-race card highlighted by one division of the Indiana Gold Sire Stakes for three-year-old trotting colts. The 160-day all harness racing meet will follow a Tuesday-Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:30 p.m. by Emily Gaskin
Rochester's Mark Thompson has enjoyed a great run with his pacers, especially over the past decade or so and snared a stable double at his local track Echuca on Tuesday July 2, with Lies and Drunken Desire winning their respective races, both handled to perfection by stable reinsperson Ellen Tormey.
Even after all the numerous awards and big stakes races he's won in America, master harness racing trainer George Teague Jr still puts a lot of his success down to luck. The Delaware horseman is also one of the sport's most humble horsemen and is quick to deflect praise.
To say top Canadian race announcer Ken Middleton is passionate about harness racing is like saying the Boston Bruins are an average hockey team. Middleton loves every aspect of harness racing and the 41-year-old believes that deep passion for the sport helps him call races at Woodbine and Mohawk.
A harness racing field field of nine will assemble for the final $500,000-est. Hoosier Cup at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino Saturday, June 25. The race, carded as the 12th on the 14-race program, will have an estimated post time of 9:30 p.m. EST. It will also feature a $20,000 guaranteed Superfecta Pool, adding a spark of excitement to the event. The Hoosier Cup will be discontinued after the 2011 event.
Total Truth, the richest son of former champion pacer Jenna's Beach Boy 1:47.6 and $1.972.172 in stakes, is a harness racing triple Breeders Crown winner and holder of a string of world records, will stand his first season at Stallion Station's Victorian base this spring.
George Teague junior is widely considered one of the best trainers of young stakes horses in North American harness racing and is looking forward to the 2009 season. From meager beginnings, Teague has become the most successful African- American trainer in the sport. He has achieved many great things in almost three decades of training.
The Pennsylvania Racing Commission has confirmed that Total Truth, an entrant in the $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace at Harrah’s Chester Racetrack on June 15, was scratched from the race by the judges after an earlier test for a permissible steroid (Stanazol) revealed the horse to be over the legal limit.
Seventeen of harness racing’s greatest pacing stars – including nine millionaires - have been entered in two $50,000 eliminations for the Ben Franklin stake at Harrah’s Chester Casino and Racetrack on Sunday, June 8. The first four finishers in each elimination will return for the rich $500,000 Franklin final on Sunday, June 15.
Total Truth, who sold at auction for a near-record $900,000 in January, is among the horses eligible to the Classic Series among the male pacers. Total Truth, who won the 2006 North America Cup and was that season's Dan Patch Award winner as the top 3-year-old male pacer, prepped for his return by winning four qualifiers, most recently in 1:52.3 at the Meadowlands.