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Saturday, July 05, 2014 (Scarborough, Maine) - Maine Sire Stakes action returned to Scarborough Downs on Saturday (7/5) as the harness racing 3-year-old filly pacers took center stage in three splits for total purses in excess of $30,000. Shurfine BabyCate (Michael Cushing) posted a minor upset of sorts to kick stakes competition off on Saturday as she managed to secure the lead past the quarter mile marker after a total of three fillies jockeyed for early position through a series of retake maneuvers. From that point, she never looked back as the daughter of Fast Company coasted to the win en route to breaking her maiden in a fleet 2:00.4. Shurfine BabyCate is owned in partnership by Donald Tranten and Michael Cushing. Cheryl Leigh (David Ingraham) was second; On Wings Of Silver (Wallace Watson) was third. Princess Wave (Kevin Switzer, Jr.) withstood a judges' inquiry in the second division after a brief misstep at the 3/8th-pole raised the question of the possibility of a breaking rule violation. When the judges completed their review, however, she was found to be in compliance, thereby securing her second straight win and remaining undefeated on the year. The daughter of Armbro Wave, owned by Tony Dearborn of Exeter, Maine, paced the mile in 2:02.1. Danvile Sweetheart (Eddie Davis, Jr.) was placed second after the original runner up, Big Bad Rose, was convicted of a pylon-rule violation. Shady Touch (Michael Cushing) was elevated to the third place showing. Making her first start from the powerful Bo Sowers stable, LP's Shyla, mounted a strong rally effort to crash the board at 50-1 odds, keying huge mutuels, featuring a $518 exacta and a $1,380 trifecta. The daughter of SouthwindMountain is owned by her former trainer, David Miller, and broke her maiden on Saturday in an extremely brisk 2:00.3. Mary Rose Of Topaz (Kevin Switzer, Jr.) was second; while Your Special (Drew Campbell) faded to third. In other news: Drew Campbell maintained his dominance over an extremely deep drivers' colony, scoring four wins on the twelve-race program helping to cement his lead in the Scarborough drivers' standings. Maine Sire Stakes action returns to The Downs on Sunday (7/6) at 1:05 pm and features the 3-year old colt pacers, with an extended card featuring the 3-year-old colt and filly trotters. By Michael Sweeney

East Rutherford, NJ - Saturday night brings one of the most anticipated Grand Circuit cards of the season to The Meadowlands. The racing centers around a pair of $50,000 eliminations for The Meadowlands Pace and the inaugural $484,500 Hambletonian Maturity four year old trot. The Pace elims are carded as races six and seven with the top five finishers from each to return for the $776,000 final next Saturday. North America Cup winner JK Endofanera is the 6/5 choice in the first elim for Meadowlands leading trainer Ron Burke for owners the 3 Brothers Stable. NA Cup second place finisher Tellitlikeitis, trained by Jimmy Takter for the Lothlorien stable, and He's Watching, third in the 'Cup, lead the charge in the seventh. He's Watching was last year's divisional Dan Patch champ and is looking for his best form for trainer David Menary who owns him in partnership with Brad Gray, Michael Guerriero and the Muscara Racing Trust. The Hambletonian Maturity, raced at a mile and one eighth, is a new concept designed to provide a stake restricted to four year olds as they transition into the aged ranks. The race has attracted both 2013 Hambletonian and Oaks winners Royalty For Life and Bee A Magician. It will be the first foray for 2013 Horse of the Year Bee A Magician against males, a task made more difficult by the fact that she drew post 13 in the bulky fourteen horse field. Brian Sears, who drove both last season, has opted for "Queen Bee", conditioned by Nifty Norman for Hartman, Liverman and Mc Duffee. Royalty For Life races out of the George Ducharme barn and will be making his first seasonal start from post six with new driver David Miller (who will be inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame on Sunday). His ownership consists of New Englanders Alfred Ross, Ray Campbell, Jr and Paul Fontaine. Rounding out the stakes is a single $25,000 elimination for the $212,000 Mistletoe Shalee three year old filly pace where ten fillies race to eliminate three. Those seven will meet the three fillies (Rock N Roll Xample Uffizi Hanover and Weeper) that were granted a bye into next Saturday's final. The WR Haughton Memorial FFA pace required no eliminations and the ten high powered pacers entered will go right through to next Saturday's $463,000 final. Also on the program is the second leg of the two year New Jersey Sires Stakes with the pacing fillies going as a single ten and the colt pacers split into a pair of eights. There is a special post time of 6:30pm on Saturday with a stunning fireworks display set to thrill onlookers after the races are completed. Reservations may be made for both this Saturday and next week's star studded extravaganza by calling 201-THE-BIGM. Further information is available by visiting The Meadowlands website. From Meadowlands Media Relations  

ANDERSON, Ind.-June 28, 2014 - Four divisions of the $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes for harness racing three-year-old pacing colts and geldings highlighted the 14-race card at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, June 28. It was a night for favorites, as all four of the divisions were won by the odds-on favorite. Slingshot Shooter and Mike Peterson set the tone for the evening as they delivered as the heavy favorite in the opening round of the stakes action in 1:51.1. It was the fourth win of the season and a lifetime best performance for the Gary Hayes trainee. Leaving from post five, Slingshot Shooter landed along the rail in fourth while Sand Gunner and Lewayne Miller got the first call through an opening quarter in :26.2. Peterson wouldn't wait long as he sent Slingshot Shooter to the front. The son of Sand Shooter-Make It Cozy rattled off fractions of :53.3 and 1:22.2 before turning back the pocket-sitting Tyler's Z Tam and Trace Tetrick late in the lane. Slingshot Shooter finished three lengths to the good and returned $3.00 at the betting window. Owned by Gary Hayes, Slingshot Shooter has now won four of seven seasonal starts while amassing $91,176 lifetime. Slingshot Shooter has finished on the board in five of seven starts while earning $49,125 throughout his sophomore campaign. In the very next race, Speed Trap looked every bit the part of a 4-5 favorite as he staged a big rally late in the lane to put a nose in front of Next Thing Smoke'n in 1:52. Driven by regular driver Ricky Macomber Jr., it was the second consecutive win for Speed Trap and second seasonal win from six starts. As the heavy betting favorite, Speed Trap returned $3.60 to his backers at the window. Leaving from the outside post nine, Speed Trap was uninvolved in the early stages of the race while Next Thing Smoke'n and Peter Wrenn carved out fractions of :27.1, :55.4, and 1:24. As the field turned for home, Speed Trap was well placed in the outer flow but would have his work cut out for him. Using a :26.4 final panel, Speed Trap powered home to put a nose in front of Next Thing Smoke'N at the wire. Trained by Ron Burke, Speed Trap has now won eight of 15 lifetime starts while amassing $94,175 lifetime. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino and Larry Karr, the son of United Ace-Cyber Cities has now won two of six seasonal starts. In the third split of the stakes action, If I Lose and Trace Tetrick used a sharp, front-running effort to score in their division in 1:51.3. It was the first win of the season for If I Lose and lifetime best performance. Leaving from the coveted rail position, If I Lose was sent firing from the gate but Mystical Shooter and Lewayne Miller also left alertly to get the first call in :27.1. Tetrick gave If I Lose the green light and the duo rattled off middle fractions of :55.4 and 1:24 before ever feeling a threat. As the field turned for home, If I Lose found another gear and used a :27.3 final quarter to win by eight lengths. As the publics' choice, If I Lose returned $4.80 at the windows. Trained by Brett Selby, who also co-owns the gelding with Lidia Zych, If I Lose has now won five of 20 lifetime outings while earning $60,645 lifetime. The gelded son of Geartogear-Western Starlight notched the first win of the season from seven seasonal outings. In the final division of the stakes action, Bluehourpower returned to his winning ways to score in 1:51.3. Suffering his first loss of the season last week, Bluehourpower used his customary late charging tactics to score his third win of the season. Driven by Sam Widger, Bluehourpower kicked home with a :26.4 last quarter to hit the wire a length in front of the front-running Always At My Place and Brad Hanners. Bluehourpower was able to overcome a tough, first over trip to get the job done. Trained and owned by Wilbur Eash, Bluehourpower has now won 7 of 15 lifetime starts and three of four seasonal starts. The son of Sand Shooter-Blue Hour has now amassed $296,094 and three Indiana Sires Stakes finals to his credit. Each of the divisional winners from the four Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations earned a spot in the second of five $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings slated for July 5 at Hoosier Park. Live racing will return to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, July 1 with a 14-race card. The 160-day, all harness racing meet will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:15 p.m. Emily Gaskin Racing Commentator, Publicist and Marketing Specialist  

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- An inside starting position, a new front-running style and a sloppy harness racing  track. Salazar faced those new challenges in the $10,500 Open Pace at Buffalo Raceway on Saturday night (June 28) and passed with flying colors.   After starting his last seven races from the five post or out and over a fast tracks, Salazar got the rail, a sloppy track and tossed out his late-closing style.   Battling Western Alumni to the quarter marker in 29.4, the pace-setting Salazar (Ron Beback Jr.) was the one to catch down the stretch. Western Alumni, who sat the pocket the entire mile, failed to produce a late charge thanks to the 28.3 last panel put up by Salazar ($4.90). Western Alumni finished three lengths behind on second while Best Ears (Jack Flanigen) took the show spot.   Owned by Lisa Denison and trained by Lisa Lederhouse, the 8-year-old Salazar (McArdle-January Spur) now has won four times in 22 starts in 2014, earning $45,872 and upping his career total to $264,456.   Racing continues on Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. at Buffalo Raceway with a 13-race program scheduled. The New York Sire Stakes will be in town with the 3-year-old colt and gelding trotters taking the spotlight.   For more information on Buffalo Raceway including the latest news, race replays, upcoming promotions and news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

MANALAPAN, NJ - June 27, 2014 - French Laundry took the rest of the field to the cleaners, coasting to a five and three-quarter length victory in the $39,000 opening round of the New Jersey Sires Stakes for two-year-old harness racing trotting colts and geldings, the first race on Friday, June 27, 2014 at the Meadowlands. The Muscles Yankee colt, out of the Hambletonian Oaks winner Creamy Mimi, trotted the mile in 1:56 flat, equaling the stakes record set by Yankee Glide in 1996. The 3-5 favorite, under a confident hand-drive by Yannick Gingras, won his pari-mutuel debut, paying $3.20, following up on a two-for-two record in baby races. The Jimmy Takter trainee was a $115,000 Lexington Selected Sale purchase by Christina Takter of East Windsor, NJ and Ontario-based John Fielding, Jim Fielding, Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. In the battle for second, True Blue [Muscle Hill], with Tim Tetrick driving, got up and Broken Record [Muscles Yankee], with Ron Pierce, held on for third by nine lengths. Saturday Mornings, driven by David Miller, collected top money in the $38,500 New Jersey Sire Stakes for two-year-old trotting fillies in the fifth race. It was a wire-to-wire effort for 6/5 Saturday Mornings [$4.40] who trotted the mile in 1:57.2, finishing a length and three-quarters ahead of Demons N Diamonds. Southwind Cartier was third by two and three-quarter lengths. Trained by Joe Holloway, Saturday Mornings was a $32,000 Lexington Selected Sale yearling purchase for Bluestone Farms of Hopewell, NJ. Mission Brief, the 4/5 favorite broke early and finished last. All seven of the starters were daughters of Muscle Hill NJSS PACING DIVISIONS TO STACIA HANOVER, DEALT A WINNER, CASHAWAY & WEAPONS DEALER Stacia Hanover by Western Ideal popped out of the pocket in the stretch and out-sprinted the pacesetter The Show Returns for a half- length victory in the $25,500 first division of the New Jersey Sire Stakes for two-year-old pacing fillies in the third race. Driven by Scott Zeron and trained by Steve Elliott, Stacia Hanover paced the mile in 1:59.1, with a last quarter in 25.4 seconds, after The Show Returns [Rocknroll Hanover], with Brian Sears driving, cut slow, unpressured fractions. Rocknroll Allnight [Rocknroll Hanover], rough in the stretch, survived an inquiry, finishing third by nine lengths. Stacia Hanover, sent off at 3-5, paid $3.20. She was a $35,000 Harrisburg Sale purchase for David Van Duse of Madison, OH and Michael Cimaglio of Lyndhurst, OH. In the second $25,500 filly pacing division, the 11th race, 3-5 Cashaway [$3.40] held off challenges from Ideal Nuggets [Western Ideal] and Smart Zone [Rocknroll Hanover] to win in 1:55 flat. Tim Tetrick guided Cashaway, a daughter of Western Ideal out of the proven producer CPA, to the neck victory with a half-length to Smart Zone in third. The Tony Alagna trainee was a $105,000 Lexington Selected Sale purchase. She is owned by her co-breeder, Brittany Farms of Versailles, KY, in partnership with Marvin Katz of Toronto, Ontario. Dealt A Winner [$8.20} paced a New Jersey Sire Stakes record for two-year-old geldings when he stopped the clock in 1:52.4 in the ninth race, the $27,000 first division for pacing colts and geldings. David Miller brushed the Cam's Card Shark gelding from sixth to the lead down the backstretch, taking command from Western Pioneer, the 4/5 favorite, and would not be caught, winning by a length and a quarter. Hurrikane Ali gained ground in the stretch to finish second while Ticket To Roll was three and a half lengths back in third. Both are sons of Rocknroll Hanover. Dealt A Winner, trained by Edward Hart and owned by Jeff Snyder of New York City, was a $35,000 Harrisburg Sale yearling purchase. The 1:52.4 mile eclipsed the gelding mark of 1:53 shared by Fancy Creek Storm [1997] and Western Ace [2005]. In the 12th race, the $27,000 second division for pacing colts and geldings, Weapons Dealer by Western Ideal had the ammunition in the stretch to post a length and a half victory over Too Darn Hot [Rocknroll Hanover] in 1:54.2. Mr Censi [Cam's Card Shark] was four and a half lengths back in third. Brett Miller was in the sulky for the victory. Isaac Waxman trains for Brenda Waxman of Dundas, Ontario and Aaron Waxman of Burlington, Ontario, who acquired the White Birch Farm-bred colt for $10,000 at the Harrisburg Sale. By Carol Hodes, SBOANJ and Darin Zoccali  

After a stint in the breeding shed, 7-year-old trotter Wishing Stone is ready to make his 2014 harness racing debut in a conditioned handicap Friday at the Meadowlands. Wishing Stone received post 10 in the race and is 9-2 on the morning line. He enters the race off one qualifier, a 1:55.2 effort on June 20 with Yannick Gingras driving for trainer Ron Burke. Undercover Strike is the 3-1 favorite, followed by Mistery Woman at 7-2 and Spider Blue Chip at 4-1. Wishing Stone stood as a stallion at Deo Volente Farms in New Jersey. He fulfilled contracts for 331 doses of frozen semen overseas as well as being bred to some 30 mares in North America. Although it is common for trotters overseas to breed and race in the same season, that is not the case in North America. Some well-known successes abroad include Ready Cash, who is France's richest trotter in history in addition to being a popular sire, and Coktail Jet and Mack Lobell, who both won the prestigious Elitloppet after performing stud duties. "It's a fun experiment and I think it's going to work," said Mike Gulotta, the CEO of Deo Volente Farms and head of the Wishing Stone Syndicate ownership group. "Actually, the first part of it has worked. We're excited." Gulotta hopes to see Wishing Stone get a boost as a stallion thanks to a new bonus program at the Meadowlands for New Jersey-sired horses. "I think now that people see that things will be changing in New Jersey, there will be a lot more interest in him and other Jersey stallions next year," Gulotta said. "Sometimes people need to see that something is actually happening in order to commit." Wishing Stone is well known in Europe, having competed there at ages 4 and 5. In 2011, he won the French trotting race Grand Prix du Sud Ouest at 1-5/16 mile and also the King's Trophy in Sweden. He was second in the Gran Premio Continentale in Italy. A year later, he captured the Copenhagen Cup in Denmark at a distance of 1-1/4 mile. He finished his European campaign with a second-place finish in the Jubilee Trophy for 5-year-old trotters in Sweden. He returned to the U.S. in August 2012 to continue his career in North America. Lifetime, Wishing Stone has won 21 of 69 races and earned $2.23 million, making him the richest offspring of sire Conway Hall. He has won multiple stakes in the U.S., including the 2010 Kentucky Futurity in straight heats at Lexington's Red Mile. "We'll see now how he races," Gulotta said. "He looks good. I think he's gained weight and grown up a little, actually, which may be helpful to him. We're happy." To read a Hoof Beats magazine story about Wishing Stone's double duty, click here. * * * JK Endofanera, the No. 1-ranked horse on the Road to the Meadowlands Pace, is entered in Friday's qualifiers at the Meadowlands. The colt, which captured the North America Cup on June 21, has won eight of 12 career races and never finished worse than third. The Ron Burke-trainee has earned $913,517 for owner 3 Brothers Stable. He is not the only Meadowlands Pace eligible in the qualifier. He is joined by Jimmy Takter-trained Lyonssomewhere, who was fifth in the North America Cup, as well as Joe Holloway's Always B Miki, Tracy Brainard's Big Boy Dreams, and Ron Coyne Jr.'s National Debt. Lyonssomewhere is No. 4 and Always B Miki is No. 7 in the Meadowlands Pace rankings. Big Boy Dreams, who was second to He's Watching in last year's New York Sire Stakes championship, has not raced in 2014. Eliminations for the Meadowlands Pace will be held July 5 and the $650,000 final is July 12. Elsewhere, Boomboom Ballykeel, who won last year's Metro Pace, is in the first of three divisions of the Ontario Sire Stakes Gold at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday. Boomboom Ballykeel has one win, which came in the sire stakes in May, in three starts this season. He is trained by Richard Moreau. The second division includes Meadowlands Pace eligibles Bugger Bruiser, trained by Carmen Auciello, and Erv Miller's Jet Airway while the third division has Ian Moore's Play It Again Sam. Three horses eligible to the Meadowlands Pace are competing in the same New York Sire Stakes division Friday at Buffalo Raceway - Patrick Lachance's Sir Sam's Z Tam, Mark Ford's Twin B Speedo, and P.J. Fraley's Ideal Cowboy. * * * In addition to the previously mentioned horses qualifying Friday at the Meadowlands, Bee A Magician, Royalty For Life, Shebestingin, and Cee Bee Yes will be among others in action. Bee A Magician, the 2013 Horse of the Year, is winless in three starts this season and coming off a ninth-place finish in the Armbro Flight Stakes on June 14 at Mohawk. Trainer Nifty Norman told Trot Insider the mare scoped sick following the Armbro Flight and would start next against her male counterparts in the $400,000 Hambletonian Maturity for 4-year-old trotters on July 5 at the Meadowlands. Last year, Bee A Magician's wins included the Hambletonian Oaks. Also being pointed to the Hambletonian Maturity is 2013 Hambletonian winner Royalty For Life. * * Levy Memorial Series champion P H Supercam will look to snap a four-race losing streak in Saturday's open handicap at Yonkers Raceway. The race also includes Heston Blue Chip and last week's winner Digital Z Tam. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications U.S. Trotting Association

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Thus far in 2014, two different divisions of the harness racing New York Sire Stakes have visited Buffalo Raceway and left town with two track records.   On Friday night, the 3-year-old colt and gelding pacers will have their work cut out for them if they want to set a new mark in their division.   The 3-year-old mark is also the same as the all-aged time of 1:52.3 set by Steelhead Hanover in 2012. But the way records have been falling at the Hamburg half-mile oval, with a fast track and warm weather expected, boys will be boys and anything can happen.   Earlier this season in the Sire Stakes, Sweetnsinful went 1:54.1 to establish a new mark standard for the 3-year-old pacing fillies while Glowngold notched a 1:59.0 mile to etch her name in the record book for 3-year-old filly trotters.   The first $60,200 division will go off as the fifth race on Buffalo Raceway's 13-race card which starts at 6:40 p.m. The Ron Burke-trained entry features Forty Five Red (If I Can Dream-Sakura Hanover) and Keystone Hanover (Bettor's Delight-Heavenly Killean). Forty Five Red won $167,554 last season and finished fifth in an elimination the Art Rooney at Yonkers back on May 24.   Keystone Hanover (Kevin Cummings) has started in three NYSS events this year with two third place finishes. The Burke entry is listed as the 3-1 morning line choice.   Ari Allstar has faced some rugged tests in his career. He was a finalist in the $534,500 Govenor's Cup at The Meadowlands in November, finishing eighth and was fourth in the $500,000 Breeder's Crown final at Pocono Downs in October. It looks like he's rounding into form for trainer Mark Ford as he posted a 1-1/4 length victory in a $15,640 conditioned pace on June 16 in 1:53 at Mohawk. Mark McDonald is the scheduled driver.   The remainder of the field includes Murder He Wrote (Jeff Gregory), Neat (Brent Holland), Believeinthespirit (Ray Fisher Jr.) and Moliere Hanover (Jim Morrill Jr.)   The second division could be considered the stronger one with the likes of Archetto Hanover, Twin B Speedo and Ideal Cowboy.   Archetto Hanover is trained by Erv Miller and comes in with $157,026 in lifetime earnings, $137,076 of which came in 2013. He posted a 1:53.2 clocking in his last appearance at Yonkers and will score from the three post for Cummings.   June has been a great month for Twin B Speedo (3-1) with a win at Tioga Downs, a second place at Yonkers and a third at Vernon Downs in Sire Stakes competition. He's been in the money in all six starts in 2014 and has bankrolled $57,172 and $142,433 lifetime. He'll start from the five hole for McDonald and trainer Mark Ford.   Ideal Cowboy (4-1) is definitely classy with a win on June 19 in the $74,000 Sire Stakes at Yonkers Raceway in 1:52.4. Trained by PJ Frawley, Ideal Cowboy competed in the $920,000 North American Cup at Mohawk on June 14 but finished ninth. Jim Morrill Jr. must navigate him from the six post.   The rest of the field includes I'm All Heart (Matt Kakaley), Sir Sam's Z Tam (Jack Flanigen), Western Conquest (Brent Holland) and El Bloombito (Jeff Gregory).   There will also be two $12,500 Excelsior A races for the 3-year-old colt and gelding pacers along with a pair of $6,500 Excelsior B races. The $10,500 Open Trot is also featured with local favorite Lutetium returning to battle five other foes.   For more information including race replays, results, upcoming promotions and the latest news, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway    

After a pair of romping wins in downstate harness racing fair events, Donald Huddleston's Macie Rae returned to Balmoral Park on Sunday night looking to avenge her only loss of the year which came in the Violet Stake here back on May 25th.   The speedy filly did just that as she shot right to the front and proceeded to make every call a winning one in an easy 1 ½ length victory over seven other ICF three-year-old trotting fillies in the $10,000 Betzotic Stake. The final time of 1:55.3 shaved nearly three seconds off her previous career mark.   Taking full advantage of an inside starting spot driver Ryan Anderson hustled the daughter of Powerful Emotion--Fox Valley Poetry away from post two and quickly settled into a familiar position on the front end while leading the field through splits of 28.2, 58.4 & 1:27.4.   With the Violet Stake winner Bailey's Wish (Dave Magee) sitting right on their backs, Anderson and the Michael Rogers trainee were never seriously threatened on their march to victory lane Sunday night, sealing the deal with a sharp 27.4 final panel while effortlessly keeping their chief rival at bay. Bailey's Wish was forced to settle for the bridesmaid role on this night while Say No Mo (John De Long) finished a distant third, five lengths behind the winner.   With Sunday's victory Macie Rae, who was hammered at the betting windows returned $4.00, $2.80 & $2.60 while running her career record to 13-3-4 in 25 starts with earnings of $48,907 for her Palmer, Illinois based owner.   Live racing continues at Balmoral Park on Wednesday, June 25th, win a nine-card card getting underway at 7:10 pm (central). The Wednesday Pick 4 will have a $10,000 guaranteed pool and will entail races six through nine. Past performances for the Pick 4 races, courtesy of Trackmaster and the U.S.T.A. can be found at www.ustrotting.com.   Tom Kelley  

June 22, 2014 - A trio of handicappers highlighted this weekend's action in HANA Harness' Grand Circuit Handicapping Shoot-Out Contest sponsored by the Hambletonian Society, DRF Harness, Meadowlands Racing & Gaming, Northfield Park, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs thanks to the appearance of Sebastian K in the TVG FFA Series by earning triple digit gains for the week. Meanwhile, Mark McKelvie took on a $200 loss to back up towards the field as the leader now has a slim $14.50 lead over second place handicapper Brandon Valvo. The trio, which had the best performance of the fifteen handicappers, was Ray Garnett, profit of $247.50; Gordon Waterstone, $150; Bob Zanakis, $125. Three additional handicappers showed smaller profits for the week. Friday night's big winners were Ray Garnett's $50 exacta partial wheel of three horses ($150 cost) which paid $375; Rusty Nash's 4 horses $20 partial exacta wheel ($80) paying $150; Ann Stepien's $75 win ticket paying $120; Gordon Waterstone's $250 win wager paying $400; Bob Zanakis' $50 two horse exacta partial wheel ($100) paying $375. Standings as of June 20, 2014 - Leg 14 Pos Handicapper Week Gain Net Profit Behind 1st Mark McKelvie ($200.00) $1,318.00   2nd Brandon Valvo $0.00 $1,303.50 $14.50 3rd Derick Giwner ($24.43) $710.57 $607.43 4th Bob Zanakis $125.00 $65.50 $1,252.50 5th Earl Paulson ($150.00) ($80.50) $1,398.50 6th Brian McEvoy $12.50 ($302.50) $1,620.50 7th Ray Garnett $247.50 ($360.95) $1,678.95 8th Josi Verlingieri ($85.30) ($518.75) $1,836.75 9th Sally Hinckley $0.00 ($689.80) $2,007.80 10th Gordon Waterstone $150.00 ($703.20) $2,021.20 11th Dennis O'Hara ($240.00) ($1,177.60) $2,495.60 12th Ann Stepien $69.20 ($1,258.90) $2,576.90 13th Garnet Barnsdale ($250.00) ($1,538.00) $2,856.00 14th Rusty Nash $50.00 ($1,592.40) $2,910.40 15th Ray Cotolo ($250.00) ($2,722.00) $4,040.00   This week, the handicapping Shoot-Out moves to Pocono Downs for Saturday’s stakes-laden card including the $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial (3yo Open Pace), $300,000 James M Lynch Memorial (3yo Filly Pace), $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial (3yo Open Trot) and $500,000 Ben Franklin (FFA Pace) in addition to any possible consolations which may be carded.  For further information regarding the Handicapping Shoot-Out, you may visit the contest website http://hanaharnesscontest.blogspot.com. Allan Schott HANA Harness Coordinator allan@hanaweb.org Visit our blog at HANA Harness Blog. Keep up with the latest HANA Harness Handicapping Contest.

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, June 19, 2014--Yonkers Raceway Thursday night hosted its first New York Sire Stakes harness racing event of the season, the $221,000 Hugh Grant Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. Three divisions went for $72,800, $74,100) and $74,100, respectively. The opening event saws odds-on (Marcus Miller, $2.70) take no prisoners from the pole. After a :26.4 opening quarter-mile, he rebuffed the advances of second choice Ideal Fashion (Dave Miller) through a :54.2 intermission. From there, a 1:23.4 three-quarters gave him a length lead into the lane. Western Conquest finished it off by three-quarters of a length over pocket-sitting Moliere Hanover (catch-driver Jason Bartlett) in 1:52.3. Third went to Keystone Honor (Matt Kakaley). For Western Conquest, a homebred son of American Ideal owned by Tanah Merah Farms and trained by Erv Miller, it was his second win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $17.20, with the triple returning $70.50. "He's handy and he's smart," Marcus Miller said of Western Conquest. "Last week (NYSS at Vernon), I was stuck in the two-hole and he paced a terrific (:25.4) last quarter, but they went too slow early. I wasn't going to sit behind anyone tonight." The second sire stakes event saw Jeneral Patton (Tim Tetrick, $3) prevail from the pocket that Western Conquest wanted no part off. "Jeneral"--from post position No. 3--sat behind second choice Sire Sam's Z Tam (Pat Lachance) through intervals of :28.1, :57.3 and 1:25.4, before diving inside. He went on to win by a length-and-a-half in 1:53. ""Sam" was a safe second, with Forty Five Red (Yannick Gingras) a best-of-the-rest third. For Jeneral Patton, an Art Major colt owned by Ken Jacobs and trained by Linda Toscano, he's now 3-for-5 this season. The exacta paid $6.40, with the triple returning $24.40. In the winner's circle, Tetrick offered his escort was "on a line" but "very talented." "We didn't race him at 2 after he hurt himself, so he's learning," Jacobs said. "We started with him a bit late this season and staked him late, but I expect him to be a good one." The evening's final statebred soiree found a first-up Ideal Cowboy (catch-driver Bartlett, $13.80) getting the eight furlongs in 1:52.4. Unhurried from post No. 6, he watched as 6-5 fave Twin B Speedo (Mark MacDonald) set early fractions of 27.1 and :57.1. Ideal Cowboy lassoed the leader in and out of a 1:24.4 three-quarters, widening to 2½ lengths into the lane. However, "Speedo" found renewed life in the lane, closing the margin only to miss a half-length. Capital Account (Gingras). For fourth choice Ideal Cowboy, an American Ideal gelding trained by PJ Fraley for co-owners Bamond Racing and J&T Silva Stables, it was his second win in seven '14 tries. The exacta paid $31.20, with the triple returning $108. "He was chasing the best colts (in the North America Cup)," Bartlett said. "Tonight, we were able to get to the leader easily because they weren't going much early. Then, he just dug in." Note that since no one took down the Thursday night Pick 5, Friday's gimmick offers a $10,0000 guaranteed poll with a carryover of $2,972.95. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule is back in business, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon. Frank Drucker

As the 2013 harness racing season came to an end, the most anticipated race of the year featured the sport's most recent Pacer of the Year Award winners - Captaintreacherous and Foiled Again. On Saturday, the two stars will renew their acquaintance in the first of two eliminations for the $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace for older pacers at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. Foiled Again, a 10-year-old who is the richest harness racing horse in North American history, won their first encounter in November's $512,000 TVG Free For All Series championship. Captaintreacherous, who was trying to become the first 3-year-old to defeat older stakes rivals since Niatross in 1980, finished sixth. Now at the age of 4, Captaintreacherous will face older rivals on a regular basis. And it begins Saturday. "I felt good with the way he ended up last year," trainer Tony Alagna said about Captaintreacherous. "He finished sixth, but he was only beaten two lengths by the best aged horses out there. That showed a lot, with as tough of a 3-year-old campaign that he had. I think he's definitely going to be a force in the open division." Saturday's two Ben Franklin Pace eliminations are part of a card that also includes two eliminations for the $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial Stakes for 3-year-old trotters, three eliminations for the $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old pacers, and three eliminations for the $300,000 James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old female pacers. Captaintreacherous, who was named the Dan Patch Award-winning Pacer of the Year in 2012 and 2013, has won 22 of 27 career races and earned $3.02 million for the Captaintreacherous Racing ownership group. He won his 2014 debut last Friday at the Meadowlands, beating a field of 4-year-olds in the $100,000 Meadowlands Maturity, which pushed him past Presidential Ball to No. 13 in purses among all pacers in history. Captaintreacherous started the Maturity from post 10 and took the lead on the backstretch on his way to a 1:49.2 triumph. "I was very happy with his first start," Alagna said. "There's always concern, first start coming back, drawing the 10 hole against horses that already had some starts under their belts, but off three qualifiers - especially the last one - we thought he was ready to go. He raced very well." Captaintreacherous and driver Tim Tetrick used a :27 move during the Maturity's second quarter to take the lead. They settled into a :28.2 third quarter before coming home in :27. "I liked the way he moved up the backside," Alagna said. "He really went to the backside strong, which is good because he's going to have to learn a little bit more maneuverability this year against those types of horses. Like always, he came right back to Timmy and was very quiet in the third quarter and when he called on him at the head of the lane he sprinted off. "He was doing his best pacing at the wire, so I was very happy about that." Captaintreacherous won five of six starts at Pocono Downs last year. He won the Breeders Crown in October, two months after suffering his only setback at the northeast Pennsylvania oval, losing the Battle of the Brandywine by a nose to Sunshine Beach in a world-record 1:47.4. "We raced him at Pocono as a 3-year-old and he was very good over the track," Alagna said. "Of course, it's a different group of horses, but we think he's ready to go." Foiled Again has won 80 of 207 races and earned $6.25 million. He has won four of nine races this year and only once finished worse than third. He comes into the Franklin elim off a second-place finish in last weekend's $92,000 Mohawk Gold Cup Invitational. The top four finishers from each of the two Franklin eliminations advance to the final on June 28. Also advancing will be the fastest fifth-place finisher. In the first elim, the field in post order is Domethatagain, Bettor's Edge, Sunfire Blue Chip, Captaintreacherous, Foiled Again, Sunshine Beach, and Beach Memories. The second elim is Captive Audience, Modern Legend, Sweet Lou, Allstar Legend, Clear Vision, Rockin Amadeus, and Bolt The Duer. Saturday's Earl Beal Jr. Memorial elims feature Father Patrick, who was the 2013 Dan Patch Award winner for best 2-year-old male trotter. Father Patrick is 3-for-3 this season and has won 13 of 14 lifetime races. Uffizi Hanover, who won last weekend's Fan Hanover Stakes, is among the 3-year-old filly hopefuls in the Lynch Memorial while Art Rooney Pace winner All Bets Off is among the 3-year-old male pacers in the Hempt. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications U.S. Trotting Association

ANDERSON, Ind.-June 11, 2014 - Sam Widger notched the 5,000th win of his career after he piloted Brooklyn's Z Tam to victory in a condition pace at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Wednesday, June 11. The 1:56.2 victory marked a lifetime best performance for the four-year-old daughter of Electric Yankee-Slick Fit and a career milestone for the 50-year-old reinsman. Trained by Mike Murphy, Brooklyn's Z Tam was able to take advantage of a perfect second-over trip to record the first win of her 4-year-old campaign. Owned by Connie Blakeman, Brooklyn's Z Tam now sports a career bankroll of $24,870. Hoosier Park's Vice President and General Manager, Rick Moore, along with Widger's friends and fellow drivers were in the winner's circle to congratulate and acknowledge his accomplishment. "On behalf of Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, I'd like to congratulate Sam on win number 5,000," Moore noted. "Through his professionalism and attitude, Sam is a great ambassador for our sport. We wish Sam continued success for the remainder of this season and throughout his career. We look forward to watching him win many more races at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino." Now in his 28th season as a driver, Widger completed his ninth season with purse earnings surpassing the $2.5 million mark in 2013. The veteran reinsman has gone over the $3 million mark in purse earnings four times in the last eight years and has finished among the top ten drivers at Hoosier Park every season he has competed. Widger also received a spot in the Hoosier Park history books when he guided Bolt The Duer to victory in the 2013 installment of Hoosier Park's most prestigious race, the $250,000 Dan Patch Invitational. Widger, who has a farm in Beecher, IL that he shares with his wife, Nancy, and his five children, loves to hunt, fish and also enjoys helping out on the family farm in his spare time. Widger remains humble when considering his career and accredits much of his success to hard work, determination and perseverance. "God willing, trainers willing, and owners willing, we'll just keep on going," Widger said after his win. "I count my blessings every day, not only with the harness racing, but with family as well. I'm as rich as anybody could be when it comes to family." Widger is currently third on the 2014 leading driver standings at Hoosier Park with 65 trips to the winner's circle and over $640,000 in purse earnings. Trace Tetrick leads all drivers with 97 victories while Tyler Smith is just behind him in second with 92 wins. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Thursday, June 12 with a 14-race card highlighted by the $17,500 Fillies and Mares Preferred trot. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule through November 15. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park

JK Endofanera solidified his spot atop the Road to The Meadowlands Pace, with another impressive win, this time in the Somebeachsomewhere at Mohawk. He has been perfect so far this harness racing season and the top spot is now his to lose. He headlines one of three North America Cup Eliminations Saturday at Mohawk. Meanwhile, He's Watching made a statement that his performance at Yonkers was nothing more than a aberration as he dominated his Somebeachsomewhere division at Mohawk as well. He moved right back toward the top of the leader board, now listed at No. 2 on this week's Road to the Pace. The biggest mover in the top-10 was Always B Miki, who appears to be getting better and better. He was a solid winner at Mohawk as well Saturday and moved up five spots from No. 9 to No. 4. Doo Wop Hanover makes his first appearance in the top-10 at No. 9 following his New Jersey Sire Stakes win over No. 3 ranked Western Vintage. Somestarsomewhere dropped to the bottom of the top-10 following a disappointing effort at Mohawk and now has to hold off the red-hot Lyonssomewhere who has looked like a serious contender in his last two wins at The Meadowlands and has moved up to No. 11. That's My Opinion has fallen out of the top-10 after making a break in the Somebeachsomewhere. He will skip The North America Cup this week and point to The Meadowlands Pace. The week 9 edition of the Road to the Meadowlands Pace can be found here. Darin Zoccali    

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 31, 2014 - If harness racing driver Tim Tetrick doesn't own the Lismore, he's working on a lease-to-buy arrangement. Tetrick won one Yonkers Raceway's premier events for 3-year-old pacing fillies a fourth time, this latest a Saturday night stakes record behind odds-on choice Tyra ($3.50). Away alertly from post position No. 4, Tyra was relegated to a four-hole seat as Southwind Silence (George Brennan)-an elim winner a week ago, as was Tyra-drove on. Southwind Silence worked around pole-sitting Also Encouraging (Matt Kakaley) before a :27.1 opening quarter-mile. A soft :28.4 next station (:56 half) figured to play into the hands of the leader, but Tyra obviously didn't get the memo. She rolled up and over Southwind Silence right after a 1:24.3 three-quarters, taking a 2½-length lead into lane. From there, she ran up the score, widening to seven length at the wire in 1:52.1. Southwind Silence a safe second, with Also Encouraging third, Palm Beach (Eric Carlson) fifth-placed-fourth and Gentlemen's Delight (Marcus Johansson) fourth-place-fifth (Euro-rail violation). It Was Fascination (Brent Holland), Rusty's Bliss (Jason Bartlett) and Bettor Business (Dan Dube) rounded out the order. For Tyra, a daughter of McArdle owned by CC Racing and trained by Joann Looney-King, it was her second win in four'14 tries. The exacta paid $6.30, with the triple (three wagering choices in order) returning $15.40. "This filly is special to me because my older brother, Tom, broke her," Tetrick said. "Ideally, I wanted get away second, but that didn't work out, but she was comfortable where she was. "She gave me a big turn of foot when I asked her and paced a real good back half." The Tetrick-driven Southwind Tempo (2007) had the old stakes record (1:52.4). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 31, 2014-Odds-on favorite All Bets Off (Matt Kakaley, $2.60) was both anxious and effective Saturday night, winning the $300,000 final of Yonkers Raceway's Art Rooney Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. In play from post position No. 4 as the 3-10 favorite, All Bets Off made the first lead in the 24th Rooney. He then handed the baton to second choice Stevensville (Tim Tetrick) right around a :27.1 opening quarter-mile. The song remained the same at the 55.1 intermission and early in the backstretch the second time. That's when Maxi Bon (Dan Dube) moved from fourth, and he was in a hurry. He disposed of a no-fight Stevensville just after a 1:23.3 three-quarters. Good thing for All Bets Off that nothing was moving behind "Maxi," as he was able to extricate himself. All Bets off collared the new leader early in the lane, then held off a rallying Some Playa (George Brennan) by a length-and-a-half in 1:52.2. Maxi Bon held third, with Unlocked (Brent Holland) closing from last to grab fourth. Bondi Hanover (Jason Bartlett) earned the final pay envelope, with Gold Rocks (Eric Goodell), a tiring Stevensville and Ideal Fashion (Jordan Stratton) rounding out the order. For All Bets Off, a statebred son of Bettor's Delight co-owned (as Burke Racing) by (trainer) Ron Burke, Frank Baldachino, Panhellenic Stables and Rosemary Shelswell, he's now 3-for-4 this season (earnings of $180,250). The exacta paid $15.80, with no triple returning $44.20. "Oh, yeah, I was worried," Kakaley said. "I thought giving up the lead (to Stevensville) was the right thing to do."Then I saw Danny's (Dube, with Max Bon) coming fast and I knew I was in trouble. I was lucky to get out. If I don't, I'm shuffled out, and probably last "He's (All Bets Off) handy enough for the half-mile , but I think he can carry his speed to bigger tracks, too," Kakaley said. "Every start, (All Bets Off) has been on his toes. Give Ronnie (Burke) and his crew an A-plus. I'm just fortunate to have the drive." In the $124,744 Lismore Final for three-year-old pacing fillies, Tyra showed her heels to the field for driver Tim Tetrick, grinding the lead away from Southwind Silence (George Brennan) by the three-quarters and then pulling away from the field to win by seven open lengths in 1:52.1. Southwind Silence was second with Also Encouraging (Matt Kakaley) third. It was the second win in four starts this year for Tyra. the daughter of McArdle is trained by Joann Looney-King and is owned by the CC Racing, Inc. of Mokena, ILL. She paid 43.50 to win as the betting favorite. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

ANDERSON, Ind.-May 29, 2014 -  Rose Run Parker turned in a gritty performance to find the winner's circle Thursday night at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino in the opening round of the $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes action for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings, and extended his win streak to seven in the process. Reaching the wire in 1:54.1, Ron Burke's Rose Run Parker established a new lifetime mark and remains undefeated in his sophomore season. After setting the track record at Hoosier Park for two-year-old trotting geldings with a 1:57 effort in stakes action last year, Rose Run Parker's 1:54.1 effort equaled the track record for three-year-old trotting geldings in just his second start of the season. Gloire Dream, driven by Lewayne Miller, showed early speed off the gate from post seven in the field of ten, clocking a :27.3 opening panel. Unable to find a spot along the rail from post nine, Rose Run Parker pressed on to the front but would yield the lead to the slight betting favorite, Sandy Z Tam and Tyler Smith at the half in :57.4. Sandy Z Tam led the field to the third station in 1:27 and the stage was set for another Hoosier Park stretch battle. Tipping from the pocket around the final turn, Rose Run Parker was able to reach the leader's wheel and the top two began to put their talent on display as they trotted away from the rest of the field. Sandy Z Tam was game on the inside but Rose Run Parker wasn't finished. Using a :26.4 final quarter, Rose Run Parker was able to put a nose in front of Sandy Z Tam to score his seventh consecutive win. Back N The Slammer and Trace Tetrick finished seven lengths behind the top pair to round out the trifecta. As the publics' second choice, Rose Run Parker returned $5.00 to his backers at the window. "I think he is the best young horse we've had since Go On BB," Ron Burke's assistant trainer, Jamie Rucker noted. "He typically likes to chase horses down, but tonight he showed some serious heart by fighting horses off after a tough trip." "That was a nice group of horses and I wasn't sure what to expect with post nine," she continued. "He has never let us down though, he raced great again tonight." The 11-time career winner has now amassed $247,375 for his connections of Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, and W. Haas Jr. Rose Run Parker's seven race win streak includes wins in the $200,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old trotting colts and the $45,250 Madison County Stakes. With the win, the son of Jailhouse Jesse-Centergy has earned his spot in the first of five $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final slated for June 7 at Hoosier Park. Indiana Sires Stakes action continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, May 30 with four divisions of $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes for three-year-old pacing fillies. The live racing schedule at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:15 p.m. Emily Gaskin

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