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CHESTER, PA - A pair of Hall of Fame harness racing drivers divided up the Liberty Bell stakes series action for three-year-old males on Wednesday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia - David Miller took both $31,300 sections of the pacing event, while Tim Tetrick won in both $37,300 trotting sections. Both of them raced their charges just off the pace, and both of them defeated the race favorite late. Miller started things off by guiding the Sweet Lou gelding Tru Lou to a 1:49.1 mark. The sophomore was able to race in the pocket behind pacesetting Manticore - certainly a better journey than he had having to pace his middle half in :52.3 to get the lead before tiring at Lexington in his last start. He went inside the leader in the lane, then held off the late burst of heavy favorite Allywag Hanover, coming from second-over, by a neck, with Manticore another length back in third. Ron Burke trains the winner for Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Knox Services Inc., and Slaughter Racing Stable LLC.   In the other pacing section, Miller won with another Sweet Lou gelding, Tito Rocks, who has now taken two straight after a 1:50.3 victory. Tito Rocks raced hard to get the early lead, yielded to the prohibitive chalk Patriot Nation to sit in the golden seat, then worked up the inside to pass the favorite by three-quarters of a length at the finish. Robert Cleary trains the winner, who went over $100,000 in career earnings with the victory, for Royal Wire Products Inc. On the trotting side, Tetrick's first stakes visit to Victory Lane came behind the Explosive Matter colt Overserved in a career best 1:53.1. Favored Paulie Walnuts set the pace in this race, with Town Victor angling out from the pocket for the drive and Overserved, who had tucked third, fanning out even wider. Overserved proved to have the most late, going by to win by 1¼ lengths, with Town Victor photoing Paulie Walnuts for the deuce. The winner, who won the Pennsylvania Stallion Series Championship last month, also reached six figures in his career bankroll with his success for trainer George Ducharme and the partnership of William Donovan, Stephen Michaels, Joe Sbrocco, and Jim Winske. The other section yielded a classic "pocketsitter passes pacesetter late" scenario, as Tetrick raced into the early pocket with the Andover Hall gelding Loyal Fox Hanover after the former occupant of that spot made a break, waited behind pacesetting chalk Shinkansen, then came out entering the stretch and trotted past for a three-quarter length lifetime mark of 1:54. Ron Coyne Jr. now has a stakes win with the youngster he has had for only three starts for the ownership of Vogel & Wags Nags LLC, Team Rice Racing LLC, and Adelphia Bloodstock Inc. In a $14,400 handicap pace for distaff pacers, the Mach Three mare Machnhope was assigned the outside post eight after winning easily last week, and here the outer starting berth proved no hindrance at all as the winner rolled to a new mark of 1:50. Machnhope jumped over $300,000 in lifetime earnings with the win for driver Andrew McCarthy and trainer Noel Daley, the latter co-owner with Deo Volente Farms LLC, Thomas Pontone, and L A Express Stable LLC. From the PHHA / Harrah's Philadelphia

HARRINGTON, DE - George and Tina Dennis' Faithfulandtrue ($4.40, Mike Cole) was a 1:55.2 winner in the featured $15,000 conditioned harness racing trot Wednesday at Harrington Raceway, highlighting a 3-win night for trainer Joe Columbo and Cole. Faithfulandtrue set all the fractions in his open length win over Jammin Jack and Fun Time Charlie. The race featured all Delaware-owned and bred horses and was sponsored by the Delaware Harness Racing Commission.   Cole and Columbo teamed up for 3 wins on the card, also winning with He Refuses To Lose ($3.80) and Teton Sunset ($4.20). Harrington's 74th season of live racing wraps up next week with racing October 19-21. by Matt Sparacino, for Harrington Raceway    

Odds On Osiris will try to repeat as an Indiana Sire Stakes harness racing champion Friday at Harrah's Hoosier Park, where success could propel him to the Breeders Crown a week later when the event returns to Hoosier for the second time in four years.There is more than $2 million in purses Friday evening. A multiple Grand Circuit stakes winner in his career, Odds On Osiris topped this season's Indiana Sire Stakes standings for 3-year-old male pacers thanks to three wins and two seconds in the series. He heads to the final off back-to-back ISS victories, including a career-best 1:49.3 score last week at Hoosier. It was his first race since Sept. 18. "I thought he felt pretty good," driver Peter Wrenn said. "He handled that pretty easily. But it's racing and (Friday) is not going to be easy. Hopefully, the end result is good. He's a very nice horse. If everything goes right, he's got this week and if he comes out of it all right, we've got the Breeders Crown. "The only problem is I don't have enough of them (like him)," he added, laughing. "Other than that, everything is perfect." Odds On Osiris has won four of eight races this year and earned $249,780. He won the Carl Milstein Memorial in August and has been off the board only once, when started in the second tier and was fourth in the North America Cup final despite a :26.3 final quarter that was at least four-fifths of a second faster than the horses that finished ahead of him. "I thought he raced really well up there," said Wrenn, who watched Sylvain Filion drive the gelding in Canada because of international travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. "He was charging at the end. That's just part of racing." For his career, Odds On Osiris has won 11 of 18 races and $593,675. He is trained by Wrenn's wife, Melanie. "It's quite a transition from (age) 2 to 3 and not all horses step up to the plate," Peter Wrenn said. "He did. I couldn't be any happier with him." Another horse looking to repeat as an Indiana Sire Stakes champion is 3-year-old female trotter Rock Swan. The Erv Miller-trained filly has won five of 10 races this season and hit the board in every start despite battling foot issues. She competed in all seven preliminary legs of the sire stakes, posting four victories and three seconds. For her career, she has won 14 of 21 races and been worse than second only once. "We've been playing with her shoes to get her a little better and hopefully she'll be on key," Miller said. "She trained really nice (Tuesday) morning. Hopefully, she'll be good to go on Friday night and then move on to the Breeders Crown. She's got May Baby to beat and she hasn't beaten her in their last couple starts. Hopefully, she'll be a little better Friday." May Baby, a Breeders Crown finalist in 2019 after finishing second to Rock Swan in the Indiana championship, has won six of nine races this year and brings a three-race win streak to Friday's start. She equaled the Hoosier Park track record for a 3-year-old trotting filly, 1:52.2, in her most recent triumph. "She's in top form," said James Yoder, who trains and drives the filly. "Hopefully, she will stay like that for the next several weeks. Three more weeks like that would be OK with me. "I've been pretty happy with her year. We had some foot issues (in August) and it took a few weeks to figure it out. It's been smooth sailing since then." Yoder also hopes to send Katkin American, an Indiana Sire Stakes finalist in the event for older male trotters, to the Breeders Crown. The 5-year-old gelding, a Hoosier track-record-setter at 3 who missed his entire 4-year-old season, has been lightly raced due to injuries. He has 11 wins and eight seconds in 20 career starts. "We've been aiming him for October," Yoder said. "We've been aiming for it all year." Miller, too, has additional Breeders Crown hopefuls, including Swift Swanda. She has won five of nine races this year and topped the ISS standings for 2-year-old female trotters. "She's a big, strong filly," Miller said. "She's just a little immature still this year. She just needs to mature. I think she'll make a great 3-year-old." Other Indiana Sire Stakes finalists eligible to the Breeders Crown include 2-year-old male pacers JK Going West, Brookview Bullet, and Virgo; 2-year-old female pacer Somethingbeautiful; 2-year-old male trotter Brookview Bolt; 3-year-old female pacer Priceless; 3-year-old male trotters Swan In Motion and Emma Town Bud; older female trotters Compelling, Custom Cantab, and Grand Swan; older female pacer Rockin Nola; older male trotters Bridge To Jesse's, Fiftydallarbill, and It's A Herbie; and older male pacer Little Rocket Man. Fiftydallarbill was a Breeders Crown champion at age 2, in 2017 at Hoosier Park. He was one of three Indiana stars, with Hannelore Hanover and Beckhams Z Tam, to win a Breeders Crown that year at Hoosier. This year's Breeders Crown eliminations will be Oct. 23 and Oct. 24. The finals for 2-year-olds will be Oct. 30 and the remaining finals will be Oct. 31. "I think there will be a lot more local trainers enter this year than the first time (the Breeders Crown) was here," Yoder said. "I think a lot of them noticed how good the Indiana-breds did the first time and I think a lot more nominated into it this year knowing it was going to be at Hoosier again." Racing begins at 6:30 p.m. (EDT) at Hoosier Park. For Friday's complete entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

Freehold, NJ --- A field of seven 2-year-old pacers are set to square off in the $56,000  New Jersey Sire Stakes- Standardbred Development Fund Final at Freehold Raceway this Saturday (October 17). Some are looking to build off big efforts, others are seeking redemption.   Renaissance winner King James Express was heavily bet in each of the first two legs, going off at 1/5 in leg 1, and 2/5 in leg 2. Unfortunately for him, he made breaks both times, and lost all chance. When he won the Renaissance, he made an early miscue, but managed to stay pacing the rest of the way. To win this one, he'll have to keep the breaks to a minimum. Jason Bartlett is in the bike from post position seven, for trainer Mark Harder.   The winners of each leg will face off here as well. Captain Fancy lost the Renaissance by a head, then went on to win the first leg, in a sharp 1:58. Trainer Bill MacKenzie elected to bypass the second leg last week, to keep him fresh for the final. Daniel Dube keeps the drive, from post position four.   Not Today won the second leg in gate-to-wire style, setting a cozy pace and cruising to the wire in 1:59.4. Marcus Miller will likely send him to the lead again, from post position three, for trainer Erv Miller.   Cheese Omelet, Imaginary Line, Hurrikane Georgie, and Solid Alibi round out the field. The race is scheduled as the third race, with a listed post time of 1:10 PM.   Post time for the first race on Saturday is scheduled for 12:30 PM.   From Freehold Raceway    

Springfield, OH — The sixth annual Buckeye Classic Yearling Sale is now complete. The harness racing sale, held Tuesday (Oct. 13) at the Champions Center Expo in Springfield, Ohio, featured a catalog of 212 yearlings. A total of 195 babies were sold, grossing just over $2.51 million and averaging $12,904, up from $8,435 last year. Hoosier Classic Sale Company would like to thank the consignors, bidders and buyers for their support in making this year’s sale a success. To view the complete results of the sale, click here. From the Hoosier Classic Sale Company

Harness Racing This Week: John Simpson Stakes, Harrah's Philadelphia, Chester, Pa.; W.N. Reynolds Memorial, The Meadowlands, East Rutherford, N.J.; and Courageous Lady, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action this week commences on Friday afternoon (Oct. 16) at Harrah's Philadelphia with two divisions in the $112,400 John Simpson Stakes for 2-year-old filly trotters and three divisions in the $93,602 John Simpson Stakes for 2-year-old filly pacers. The Meadowlands on Friday will host the W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 2-year-old trotters. There will be one $61,500 division for 2-year-old colt trotters and one $55,600 division in the 2-year-old filly trot. On Saturday (Oct. 17), Northfield Park will feature the $120,000 Courageous Lady for 3-year-old filly pacers. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Driver Dexter Dunn secured a pocket seat for Amigo Volo and with several horses making breaks over the "good" surface, had open road to pop and power to a 1:51 victory in the $444,000 128th Kentucky Futurity on Sunday (Oct. 11) at The Red Mile. Amigo Volo posted a 1:51 victory in the $444,000 128th Kentucky Futurity. USTA/Mark Hall photo. Ready For Moni, the 3-1 second choice, lagged from his second-tier starting spot while Amigo Volo pushed for position to the inside. Beads, launching from post 10, swept to the lead before a :27 opening quarter while Amigo Volo settled into second with EL Ideal third and 4-5 favorite Back Of The Neck fourth. Back Of The Neck made his move after the leader passing a :54.2 half and drew closer to the pacesetter into the final turn. Moving towards three-quarters in 1:22.3, Back Of The Neck broke stride, giving Amigo Volo room to tip out of the pocket straightening for the finish. Beads began to gallop while EL Ideal chased Amigo Volo through the stretch, settling for second. Third Shift ripped from the backfield to take third while Chestnut Hill weaved through traffic for fourth. "He was really good here last week -- he was probably just a little bit short," Dunn said after the race of the Father Patrick-Margarita Momma gelding's second-place finish in the Bluegrass. "Nifty knew he was going to be better today and he was. Last year he used to shake his head bad and it cost him a couple of times. He didn't have as good of form when he came back as a 3-year-old -- he was a bit average. We were probably looking after him a little too much -- he just likes to race. You get off the gate hard, that's when he gets excited and puts in good performances. "I did attempt to go (for the lead) -- I came out for a little bit when we hit the back straight, but Beads was a little aggressive and took off so I ducked back into the two-hole there. Back Of The Neck came up outside of us around the last turn, and I was sort of 50-50 (on) whether I'd come out or stay in. And he ran, so that was probably a lucky trip in the last turn to get out, but the horse did a great job." Surpassing $1 million in earnings with the victory, Amigo Volo has won six races from 12 starts this season and 12 from 24 overall, banking $1,206,369 for owners Pinske Stables and David J. Miller. Richard "Nifty" Norman trains the gelding bred by Kentuckiana Farms LLC and Jorgen Jahre Jr. He paid $10.00 to win. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2020, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2020 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following this past weekend: Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 915; 2. Dexter Dunn - 648; 3. Tim Tetrick - 526.5; 4. Andrew McCarthy - 484; 5. David Miller - 478. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 833; 2. Nancy Takter - 811.5; 3. Tony Alagna - 622; 4. Ake Svanstedt - 514; 5. Marcus Melander - 383. Owners: 1. Determination - 200; 2. Caviart Farms - 193.8; 3. Brad Grant - 192.3; 4. Burke Racing Stable - 178.7; 5. Courant Inc. - 154.5. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next week at Harrah's Philadelphia, Harrah's Hoosier Park and The Meadowlands. Harrah's Philadelphia will host the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old filly pacers and trotters; Harrah's Hoosier Park will have The Circle City for 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits; and The Meadowlands will feature the third leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. by Paul Ramlow, for The Grand Circuit

ANDERSON, IN  - With the Championship Season well under way, Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino is preparing for the $250,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Finals on Friday, October 16. Heralded as Hoosier Champions Night, the super finals are the culmination of the Indiana Sires Stakes season, where the top ten point earners of each division will compete for the highest honors in Indiana harness racing. Each season brings a variety of spectacles from division to division. Fans see the excitement of new two-year-olds, see which three-year-old rivalries are still sharp as well as see how those in the aged ranks make their transition and compete against some more seasoned company. Some of Indiana's biggest names grabbed Super Final wins, with Freaky Feet Pete and Hannelore Hanover as examples. One freshman that has caught the crowd's eye, the betting public's eye at least, sent off as the post time favorite in seven of eight starts, is two-year-old pacing filly Somethingbeautiful. The daughter of Always A Virgin-Summer N Sand as amassed a bankroll of $179,750 in only eight starts. Her win record may be more impressive, though, as she is undefeated in Indiana Sires Stakes action and only holds one second-place finish in the $200,000 Kentuckiana Stallion Management. Somethingbeautiful is trained by Delaware native Dylan Davis, who has already earned over $1 million in purses this year. Regular pilot LeWayne Miller is one of the top ten drivers at Harrah's Hoosier Park. Not only is Somethingbeautiful the division's points leader, she is the only Indiana Sires Stakes competitor entering the Super Finals undefeated in stakes action. For the freshmen colts, son of JK Endofanera-Kats Treasure, What's Your Beef, is dominating the standings with a 62 point lead. Kicking off his two-year-old campaign with four straight victories, two of those being sires stakes, he has never finished off the board. He boasts a lifetime bankroll of $113,315, the highest bankroll of the division. The colt's regular pilot Trace Tetrick has held the leading driver spot at Harrah's Hoosier Park for the past six straight years. Brian Brown of Ohio trains What's Your Beef for owners W J Donovan, Joe Sbrocco, Kirk Nichols and JAF Racing. Even with the win streak broken, the pacer still boasts a record of 9-6-1-2. With a lifetime mark of 1:51:3, he also competes as one of the fastest in his division. On the trotting side, two-year-old Breckenridge leads the ranks, the runner-up's score over 60 points behind. Bred by Dan Shelter and Sawgrass Farms, Shetler owns, trains and drives the gelding, steering him to the winner's circle for five of his eight starts. Breckenridge not only recently surpassed $100,000 in earnings as a freshman, but holds the highest bankroll for his division at $105,882. Breckenridge recently added another win to his current streak, now holding a four race win streak, all four wins in Indiana Sires Stakes. He's lowered his lifetime mark in each of his last five starts, the current clocking at 1:55:2. Breckenridge enters the Super Final with a win record 8-5-1-0 for owners Dan Shetler and Dojea Stables. Three-year-old pacing gelding Odds On Osiris looks to claim back-to-back Super Final wins after a dominant freshman career. Grabbing wins in The Fox Stake and The Madison County at two, the Wrenn team of driver Peter and trainer Melanie kicked off his sophomore career with sights set beyond Indiana. He was victorious in the $250,000 Milstein Memorial at Northfield Park. North of the border, Odds on Osiris was second in the elimination for the $760,000 North American Cup and finished fourth in the final. Back in action on his home turf, Odds On Osiris immediately picked up a win in the sixth round of stakes action for three-year-old pacing geldings. He holds the highest bankroll for the division by a margin of over $200,000 and has won three of seven of his sophomore starts. Along with earning that impressive $593,675 bankroll for owner Odds On Racing, Odds On Osiris currently holds the two-year-old pacing gelding Harrah's Hoosier Park track record at 1:53:3. Bred by Merlie Schwartz, the son of Rockin Image-Antigua Hanover shows a lifetime record of 18-11-3-2. Hoosier Champions is set for Friday, October 16 at Harrah's Hoosier Park. With $2 million in purses, it will serve as the richest night the Indiana program this season. With a daily post time of 6:30 p.m. Harrah's Hoosier Park races on a Tuesday through Saturday schedule. The 2020 season will be highlighted by the return of the Breeders Crown, slated for Friday, October 30 and Saturday, October 31. For more information, please visit by Rose Flood, for Harrah's Hoosier Park

The $120,000 Courageous Lady goes postward this Saturday (October 13) at MGM Northfield Park. The Grand Circuit race is an open harness racing event for North America's top 3-year-old filly pacers and has attracted a very competitive slate of foes vying to become this year's champion. The race highlights an impressive card offering over $780,000 in purses. Perfect Storm will start from post three and has been installed as the 3-1 luke-warm favorite. The Robert McIntosh trainee has been a solid player in this year's sophomore pacing filly stakes scene and that has earnings of six figures this season. David Miller has been given the driving assignment. The morning line second choice, Dance Club, has drawn the rail for trainer Ron Burke. She enters off two consecutive victories, including the $30,000 Liberty Bell at Harrah's Philadelphia. Chris Page has been named to pilot. Ron Burke and Brian Brown each have entered two fillies in Saturday's featured event. Burke will also start Drama Act, the 9-2 third-choice contender from post-8 with Matt Kakaley. Brown will harness Pettycoat Business, the lone supplement to this year's Courageous Lady, a 6-1 shot from post-6 with Dexter Dunn driving and Blazin Grace, a 15-1 longshot from the seven-hole. Below is the complete 2020 $120,000 Courageous Lady field: PP Horse Trainer Driver Morning Line 1 Dance Club Ron Burke Chris Page 7-2 2 Keystone Eureka Ryan Miller Aaron Merriman 6-1 3 Perfect Storm Robert McIntosh David Miller 3-1 4 Ellagator Chris Mc Guire Ronnie Wrenn Jr. 20-1 5 JK Finendandy Jennifer Bongiorno Joe Bongiorno 10-1 6 Pettycoat Business Brian Brown Dexter Dunn 6-1 7 Blazin Grace Brian Brown TBA 15-1 8 Drama Act Ron Burke Matt Kakaley 9-2 *Final drivers are due 9 PM on Tuesday. This year's Courageous Lady has been slated as race 12 on a 16-race program. A $10,000 guaranteed Pick-4 pool has been added to the night. The guaranteed Pick-4 will begin in race 11. The undercard will feature eight $75,000 Ohio Sires Stakes Consolations and Northfield's annual Lady Drivers Challenge featuring all female drivers. MGM Northfield Park reminds horsemen of four upcoming fall late closers.  Draws for these late closers start tomorrow (October 13) for racing on Sunday.  All late closers carry a condition of: Non-winners of Two Pari-Mutuel Races (Ohio Sired N/W Three) or Non-Winners of $20,000 Lifetime (Through 9/30/2020). There is no pre-nomination necessary for any of the late closers, which all consist of four preliminary legs ($7,500 Purse) plus an $18,000 final.  Horsemen can simply enter on the scheduled draw date for a specific late closer and pay the entry fee the night of the horse’s scheduled start. A one-time entry of $300 covers the entire series and a horse does not have to race in every leg to be eligible for the final.  Call Northfield’s race office at 330.467.4101 ext. 52300 with any questions. by Ayers Ratliff, for Northfield Park

HARRINGTON, DE - It was quite a successful harness racing night for horsemen whose initials are CC Tuesday at Harrington Raceway. Driver Corey Callahan (4 wins) and trainer Chuck Crissman (3 wins) had the hot hand on the 12-race program. Callahan and Crissman teamed up with Bret Sliwka's Shezallapples A ($48.40), who was an upset winner in the $18,000 Fillies and Mares Open in 1:53.4. The 7-year-old Sportswriter mare surged off cover in deep stretch for a one length win over Artful Dancer and Lil O'Reilly. It was her 6th win of the year for the Crissman trainee. Race favorite Artrageous led the field through fractions of 27.2 and 56.4 before receiving heavy pressure from Abuelita Hanover to three-quarters in 1:24.4.   Meanwhile, Shezallapples A gathered momentum third over on the outside and fanned wide at the top of the stretch before drawing clear by a length at the wire. Montrell Teague also had a driving double. by Matt Sparacino, for Harrington Raceway

PACER OF THE WEEK: CLOSING STATEMENT Coming into a $10,000 condition pace on Saturday afternoon, this five-year-old harness racing gelding trained by Randy Bendis had picked up back-to-back victories, one at the Meadows and one at Pocono. Closing Statement was stepping up in class for the race on Saturday. Perhaps that's why he went off at middling odds of 6-1 with the inside post in a field of seven. In the previous two wins, Closing Statement had lived up to his name with come-from-behind efforts. But driver Larry Stalbaum had other ideas on Saturday, sending the gelding to the front and setting nasty fractions. Closing Statement never let up, rolling to a romping victory in 1:49.3, which was a new career-best and the fastest pacing time of the week at Pocono. Honorable Mention R Gauwitz Hanover (Kevin Wallis, Kevin Reynolds Jr.), who picked up his second straight claiming win on Sunday night in 1:53.4. Scootnroll (Tyler Buter, John Hallett), who captured Sunday night's feature condition pace in a career-best 1:51.1, giving him wins in eight of his nine career races. Full View (Tyler Buter, Scott Blackler), who scored his second straight condition win on Tuesday afternoon, getting it done in 1:52.4, which matched his career-best. TROTTER OF THE WEEK: MUSCLE M UP The featured $17,200 condition trot on Saturday afternoon was stacked with top competitors. Even though Muscle M Up, a five-year-old stallion trained by Ake Svanstedt, had won a featured trot in his last start at Pocono, he went off as a 5-2 third choice. Early on he sat third while Explosivebreakaway, the 9-5 favorite, set the pace. On the back stretch, driver Anthony Napolitano sent Muscle M Up first-over after Explosivebreakaway. The two hooked up for a great duel, with Muscle M Up eventually wearing down the favorite and getting the better of it. The stallion trotted away at the end to win by two lengths in 1:52.2, which was the fastest trotting time posted at Pocono this past week. Honorable Mention Sylvesteramericait (Mike Simons, Robert Baggitt Jr.) who came in from Harrah's for a condition victory on Saturday in 1:54.1, his second win in his last three races. Winning Legends (Justin Huckabone driver and trainer), whose win at Pocono in a condition on Saturday came in a career-best 1:53.2. Mighty Surf (Mike Simons, Jake Huff), a mare who handled a $20,000 claiming trotting group on Tuesday in 1:56.2 on an off-track. LONG SHOT OF THE WEEK: MAC ANOVER This one paid a nice price after scoring a condition pacing victory on Saturday with Simon Allard in the bike at 11-1, yielding a $24.80 payback on a $2 win ticket. DRIVER OF THE WEEK: SIMON ALLARD Allard rolled to five wins on Saturday at Pocono, and then arrived late Sunday night to dash off victories in the last three races on the program. TRAINER OF THE WEEK: MARTA PIORTOW The Piotrow barn has been a factor all year long at Pocono, and she continues to roll as the season winds down after earning a training double on Sunday. That will do it for this week at Pocono, but we'll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at by Jim Beviglia, for The Downs                

Trenton, NJ — For the time being, Tyler Angus plans on majoring in engineering while wrestling in college, and hopefully become a part-time harness racing Standardbred driver if he can squeeze it in. There is, however, a disclaimer to that thought process. “If I become the next David Miller or something, I’ll make a career out of it,” the 18-year-old Ohio resident said with a laugh. “But I’ve got a very long road ahead of me before I’m there.” His road was well paved at the start, as Angus drove his first official race Aug. 24 and guided Ruffy’s Desire to victory at the Canfield Fair. After driving four qualifiers at Northfield Park, where his dad Ryan trains, Tyler got his chance thanks to trainer Billy Rhoades. “Him and my dad are pretty good friends,” Angus said. “Billy just saw my dad one day and said, ‘Hey ask your kid if he wants to go up to the fair and drive Ruffy’s Desire; he’s two fingers, he’s safe.’ Dad asked me, Billy and I talked and went to the fair and did what we did.” He did it well, thanks to receiving the sagest advice a trainer can give to a first-time driver. “One thing that really helped is Billy told me there’s no pressure,” Angus said. “He said ‘If you get beat, you get beat, just take it like a man.’ It was actually a lot of pressure off my back.” But a driver wouldn’t be human if they didn’t feel some type of anxiety in their maiden voyage. “I was a little bit nervous,” he said. “You want to look good, show people you’re safe and you can handle a horse.” Angus displayed all of that by getting out quick from post two and never yielding the lead. “The horse didn’t have that much gate speed; so Billy told me to put him right on the front and enjoy the ride and that’s what I did and got the dub (W),” Angus said. As his victory became apparent, Angus began to happily check an item off his bucket list. “I just couldn’t believe it,” he said. “Coming around the last turn, I kept looking back and I opened up and it was just a dream come true, something I’ve been wanting to do my whole life. I got the opportunity and got the job done.” Since then, Angus has driven in some qualifiers and one other race in which he said of himself and the horse, “We both had a rough day.” Since beginning his senior year at Nordonia High School, Angus has been focusing on his studies and playing linebacker for the football team. He will concentrate on his main sport in the winter when they roll out the wrestling mats. Apparently, colliding with other bodies on the gridiron is his way to relax. “Honestly, I just use football to get a break from wrestling,” he said. “I love football; I enjoy it, but I don’t take it as serious as wrestling. It’s just a break for me.” Angus wrestles year-round except for football season; and has been a state and national place-winner in club wrestling. At the prestigious Virginia Beach Dual Meet Tournament, he went 5-1 and beat several state champions. “It was a good experience for me,” said Angus, who will look to wrestle at 152 pounds this year. “I’m hoping to wrestle in college. I’ve got a bunch of Division Two offers and a couple of small D-One schools, but I’m not going to decide until the end of wrestling season.” While sports make it tough for Angus to drive, it doesn’t keep him away from the horses. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, he only attends classes at school two days a week, giving him five days to help his dad. “Working with animals is something I enjoy,” he said. “Just helping them; getting them better, watching them win a race.” Angus caught the bug when he started helping his dad as a pre-teen. When he turned 10, Ryan let him jog his first horse. “I liked it and started jogging more,” Angus said. “He got me into training, I didn’t do so hot training at first. Then I started doing it more; got the hang of it, started cutting miles and babies and all that.” Soon, the undeniable urge to climb in the sulky surfaced. “I asked him, ‘Hey what are the chances you would let me drive?’” Angus said. “He wasn’t all for it at first. He just didn’t want to see me take a chance and get hurt. I understood. I was only 15 at the time. “We started getting more babies, training more miles, training off the gate. I asked him again when I was 16 or 17. He said, ‘If that’s what you want to do, I’m going to support you.’ I got my fair license, passed the test and that’s pretty much it.” Angus hopes to resume driving next spring, after high school wrestling concludes. He has managed to use some grappling experiences to help with driving. “When you’re in the race bike, you just lay back, it feels comfortable to you,” Angus said. “It kind of feels like a position in wrestling, when a kid is on your leg or something. And wrestling helped with my nerves and confidence level in driving.” Whether he is on the mat or in the bike, Angus gets the same rush. “I love competing, that’s just me,” he said. “I think racing and competing in wrestling or football are two of the same things. It’s fun going fast, it’s fun going against another guy in wrestling.” And if he ever gets as good as David Miller, that would be fun too. by Rich Fisher, for the USTA

It is still to be determined whether or not there will be end of the harness racing season awards given out at Saratoga Casino Hotel this year due to the abbreviated season and the major reduction in Opens contested. If there are awards, you can pretty much lock up Filly and Mare Pacer of the Year for Bontz N (American Ideal). The Gary Levine trainee was dynamic earlier in the season, winning four consecutive installments of the Open for distaffers and on Tuesday afternoon (Oct 13), she added another to her tally. Bontz N came into the $9,350 Fillies and Mares Open off a victory but she had dropped in class to secure that win. Leading driver Billy Dobson was back in the bike on Tuesday as the nine year old mare cruised out to early lead in the feature. Clicking off a first quarter in 27.3 before going a half in 57 seconds over a sloppy track, Bontz N was met with her first challenge approaching three quarters. She rebuffed a first-over rival and held strong in the stretch before reporting home a three-quarters of a length winner in 1:55.1.   The race's 3-5 betting favorite, Bontz N recorded her sixth Open victory of the season besting Racine Bell (Jimmy Devaux) and Pasultimatedelite N (Jay Randall) who first second and third, respectively. The exacta and triple with the favorite on top paid $16.20 and $96. Levine holds a small lead in the trainer standings after a pair of Tuesday victories. Bontz N accounted for one of three wins for her connections as Levine and Dobson teamed up with owner of April Aldrich of Greenfield Center, NY for victories with pacers JK Heaven Sent (Rock N Roll Heaven) and Western Beachboy (Somebeachsomewhere). The latter sizzled through the slop winning in a dazzling 1:52.2 with Dobson in the bike. The meet's leading driver piloted four winners on the card. Live racing takes place every Monday and Tuesday afternoon with first post time set for noon. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway

WILKES-BARRE, PA - With a strong uncovered move down the backstretch, the Prayer I Am mare Mighty Surf went to the lead at the ¾ pole and went on to an easy 1:56.2 harness racing victory in the $11,200 claiming trotting feature at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Tuesday afternoon. The favored winner came home in :28.4 over a "good" track on a day with the temperature in the mid-50s. Mighty Surf is now two for four since being claimed by trainer Jake Huff and the Beauty Bridle Racing Stable Inc.; Pocono's "Trot Man," diagonally-gaited sulky specialist Mike Simons, drove the winner.   The well-respected trainer Jenny Melander scored his first career sulky success with the Lionhunter sophomore gelding Hunting AS in a $10,400 contest, rallying from far back to nose out S Class in 1:58. Melander, who has trained the winners of over $5 million, had achieved victories in Racing Under Saddle competition, but this is her first winner to sulky in infrequent career outings. Melander Racing Inc. co-owns the winner with Robert Bernaski. The Napolitano brothers, George Jr. (the track's leading driver) and Anthony, accounted for half of the fourteen winners on the Tuesday card, with George first four times and Anthony three. The triple gave Anthony 13 winners for the second straight three-card Pocono racing week. And on a day where eight of fourteen favorites were successful, both brothers brought home two of the non-chalk, with winners for George including $7.20 and $37.60 successes, and Anthony piloting horses who paid $12.20 and $35.80. From the PHHA / The Downs  

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 13, 2020 -- Truth And Liberty threw down a 26.1 opening panel, then thwarted a host of  harness racing challengers to capture Tuesday's feature at The Meadows, a $10,800 Filly & Mare Conditioned Pace. Nearly every horse in the field came after Truth And Liberty down the backside; they were stacked three wide at the three-quarters. But the 8-year-old daughter of Total Truth-Jazzy Hall responded to Hunter Myers' urging and, despite bearing out in deep stretch, held firm in 1:51.1. Lakeisha Hall finished second, a length back, while Hedges Avenue A shot the Lightning Lane for show.   Lonnie Graber trains Truth And Liberty, who lifted her lifetime bankroll to $546,482, for Fairy Horsemother Stables. Dave Palone piloted three winners on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday when the 13-race program features a $65,540 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5 and a $750.97 carryover in the Pick 5 (race 8). First post is 12:45 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the MSOA      

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

Anderson, IN-- October 13, 2020-- Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino and 2020 Breeders Crown Presenting Sponsor The Libfeld-Katz Breeding Partnership are pleased to announce the results of a special harness racing auction that was held on Tuesday, October 6 at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion as part of the 2020 Breeders Crown Charity Challenge. The auction featured 2021 breedings to Father Patrick, Greenshoe, JK Endofanera, Swan For All, Tall Dark Stranger, and Walner. Exceeding expectations, a total of $105,000 in funds was raised through the auction. The Breeders Crown Charity Challenge would like to extend a sincere thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of the auction including Kountry Lane Standardbreds, Blue Chip Bloodstock, Caviart Farms, Northwood Bloodstock for Richard Fry, Kentuckiana Farms, and The who successfully purchased breedings. "I want to extend my sincere thanks and appreciation to all the industry participants who have once again so generously supported the Breeders Crown Charity Challenge," said Marvin Katz, speaking on behalf of the Libfeld-Katz Breeding Partnership, which is the official presenting sponsor of the Breeders Crown at Harrah's Hoosier Park, Oct. 30 and Oct. 31. "The entire Harrah's Hoosier Park team must be acknowledged, applauded, and thanked for their tireless commitment under today's challenging environment to host this year's Breeders Crown. We all look forward to celebrating Breeders Crown weekend at Hoosier Park. Well done everyone.". The Breeders Crown Charity Challenge launched in September and features four teams consisting of a celebrity, a charity of their choosing, and an award-winning three-year-old pacing colt. In addition to the stallion breeding auction, funds for the Breeders Crown Charity Challenge will also be generated by donations through a Glamour Boy Challenge in the 3-year-old pacing colt division, in which the partnerships will donate 1% of their horse earnings through November 1. Harrah's Hoosier Park and Libfeld-Katz are partnering with the four Indiana celebrities to raise funds for their respective charities, and the challenge will be centered around a Facebook poll and social engagement. Each celebrity's charity will receive a donation, but the celebrity-charity duo with the highest votes on the Facebook poll will receive a majority of the funds raised. To cast your vote, click here. The 2020 Breeders Crown Charity Challenge Lineup is as follows: Celebrity & Charity Teams Indianapolis Colt, Super Bowl Champ, & Pro Bowl Alum, Jeff Saturday - Hoosier Burn Camp - Indiana Lieutenant Governor, Suzanne Crouch - AWS Foundation of Indiana - Former Indiana Basketball Player & Indianapolis Sports Radio Personality Dan Dakich - The Tyler Trent Cancer Research Endowment - WTHR Indianapolis News Anchor, Julia Moffitt - Morning Dove Therapeutic Riding Inc. - by Emily Gaskin, for Harrah's Hoosier Park

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