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Five $20,000 divisions of the first leg of the Pennsylvania Stallion Series for harness racing three-year-old pacing colts and geldings were featured Monday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, and the fastest winner was I'm Some Graduate, a royally-bred colt whom at one point last year many thought might one of Pennsylvania's overall best, winning his seasonal debut in 1:51.3.   When you have a $4.5M world champion pedigree (Somebeachsomewhere, $3.2m / world champion out of Western Graduate, $1.3m / world champion), you start life with advantages, and I'm Some Graduate showed those advantages last year: he began his career with two wins, stepped up to the Sire Stakes level and was second (the horse giving him his first loss was named Check Six - has he done anything lately?), then won a Sire Stake and the Sire Stakes Consolation, the latter with two moves in 1:50.3. He was odds-on in two Grand Circuit events at The Red Mile Grand Circuit, but caught off tracks both weeks and was off the board twice, and then he had been laid off until tonight's (Tuesday's) race.   I'm Some Graduate, driven by Tim Tetrick for trainer Thomas Cancelliere and owner John Cancelliere, came home in 27 flat on the engine to take his 2016 debut, but he didn't have it easy by any means - a Dragon Again gelding, sold for $14,000 as a yearling and still eligible to "nw2," named Doubleshottahott lived up to his moniker tonight, coming out of the pocket to extend I'm Some Graduate fully to win by a head. Still, a win is a win, and a good building block to start the season for a horse who seems to have a world of potential.   Driver Andrew McCarthy captured two of the Sire Stakes divisions, and after four non-favorites started off the features (even I'm Some Graduate was an 8-5 second choice), he got a chalk home in the final division in the form of Duke Of Delray, a Yankee Cruiser colt who rallied up the famed Pocono Pike to catch pacesetting Don McWhite by a neck in 1:53, with Chris Ryder handling the training for owner/co-breeder Shelby Novick.   McCarthy's other Stallion Series win was a bit easier, as he put the Well Said gelding Senator Charlie on the lead in front of the stands for the first time, and the sophomore took it from there, stepping home in 1:53 - 27.3 to be 1¼ lengths clear of Good Living on the money for trainer Mark Harder and owner/breeder Fox Hollow Farm.   Driver Jim Morand, one of only 18 sulkysitters to have 9000 or more career victories, got his first winning drive at Pocono in over 18 years (the previous one was 6-14-97 behind the Bucky Waugh-trained filly Dragon So in a Miss Pocono elimination) when he steered the Les Givens trainee Power Of A Cruiser to a 1:53 head victory over Littleoffthetop (handled by Clyde Francis of Wiggle It Jiggleit fame). Morand's stepfather Gerry Bookmyer would have approved of his stepson's handling of the Yankee Cruiser gelding, as Jim waited patiently inside until he could move out behind the cover of Littleoffthetop, then ran that talented foe down in the shadow of the wire for owner/breeder Michael Horsey.   Morand hadn't won at Pocono in over 18 years; the driver of the other Stallion Series winner hadn't won at the mountain oval in ... 54 minutes. George Napolitano Jr., the track's all-time leading driver, won Tuesday's curtainraiser and then came back three races later to guide Stone Fire Hanover to a new mark of 1:52.3, using the Pocono Pike to win by a half-length in a contest that saw the top six finishers bunched within a length at the finish. The Dragon Again gelding came crossstate from The Meadows to win for trainer Randy Bendis, who shares ownership in the sophomore with Thomas Pollack.   At press time, George had three winners on the Monday card, giving him 11 at Pocono for the Saturday-Monday period and 18 when adding in his results for Philly on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.   PHHA / Pocono

The inaugural event for 2016 New York Sire Stakes took place at Monticello Raceway on Monday May 23. 6 NYSS events were contested, two races for each category, the Excelsior A's, and Excelsior B's and the upper echelon Sire Stake fields. The front end ruled, as eight of the harness racing cards eleven races where won wire to wire. Starting off the action in the second race was the first heat of the B division, it was almost too much action, as Sultry Susan made a nasty break in the first turn and went to her knees, scattering the entire field behind her. Dw'sblissfulthinn capitalized on the miscue and made the most of it, scoring a wire to wire win for trainer Debra Miller, and driver Jim Marohn Jr. in 2:00:1 for owner Donald La Page, The 2nd heat of the B class was the following race, I Got The Life, (Roll With Joe) benefited from a conservative drive by Mark Macdonald. She settled in 5th, and used the passing lane to score in a photo for a lifetime best 1:59:1. Jim Graham co owns the filly with Ronald Viola. Race 4, was the first division of the open class of fillies, Jim Morrill Jr. aboard Soft Ideal showed the field through fractions of 28:0, 56:4, 1:26:0 was stalked the entire mile by the Burke entry of Mother of Art and Art Critic, the filly labored in deep stretch but hung on for the win 1:55:2. She returned a $3.60 Already with 11 starts under his belt and tight, he seasoned Erv Miller trainee Rolling Going Gone (Roll With Joe) won on the front end in 1:57:2 for driver Marcus Miller and owner Ross Bonafield. Milky Way Rae (American Ideal) was under wraps and raging with pace for driver Jim Morrill Jr, scoring well in hand in 1:55:2, pacing the fastest LQ of the day of 28:2 in the afternoons final Excelsior event, the win gave Morrill a driving double on the card. The final NY Bred race of the came in race 8, Andy Miller brought his American Ideal filly, American Ivy to the fray, the tender footed filly started from Post 5, took the lead before the ¼ from Vino and Formaggio and showed the way, ranging into contention at the ¾ came Time on My Hand, but American Ivy rebuffed the challenge, prevailing in the afternoons fastest race 1:54:3, for owner Joe P Racing LLC of Delray Beach, Fl. American Ideal had three daughters enter the winners circle, followed closely by his Blue Chip Farm stable mate, Roll with Joe who had two winners on the afternoon. By Shawn Wiles

David Banks and Layfield Horses' Getifoffyourchest ($3.60, Ross Wolfenden) was a dominant winner in achieving his third straight harness racing victory in 1:51.1 Monday at Harrington Raceway in the featured $16,000 Open. Getitoffyourchest left the gate from post three and set fractions 27.1, 56.1 and 1:24.1 with little opposition and cruised to a two length score in 1:51.1 over Coaster and Sentencing Memo. Trained by Richard Lewis, it was the 14th career win for Getitoffyourchest, a 6-year-old Tell All stallion. The combination of Lewis and Wolfenden teamed up again in the eighth race as Options Are A Dream ($4.60) prevailed for his 10th win in 13 career starts in 1:53.3. Wolfenden had three wins on the program. Earlier on the card, Next Success ($5.40, Art Stafford Jr.) notched his fifth straight win for trainer Les Givens with a 1:54.1 score. Matthew Sparacino  

As the second full weekend of harness racing wrapped up at Hawthorne Race Course, the temperatures warmed and a couple of drivers heated up. Leading driver Casey Leonard had a big weekend in the bike as he guided home 13 winners over the four day racing week. Leonard opened the racing week with a three bagger on Thursday. On Friday evening, Leonard guided home five winners, some at big prices. Leonard won the fourth race with Little Miss Torie ($57.20), followed by favored Financial Effort two races later. In the ninth race Leonard was back in the winner's circle with the longest shot on the board as Dali Treasure ($51.00) rallied late. The following race Leonard drove home Sure You Are ($33.20) and closed out the evening with favorite Jiggles the Clown in the finale. Leonard won three more times on Saturday, including another impressive score by Ontario Success (1:51) in the Saturday feature. He closed the 13 win weekend with a pair of victories on Sunday evening. Driver Todd Warren also had a fine weekend, winning seven races over the four day span. Warren opened the week winning a pair on Thursday night. After going winless Friday, he came back with a trio of scores Saturday, driving home both Old Man River and KC Rambunctious Boy to their second wins each on the meet. On Sunday, Warren won twice more as John Jay and It'saswan both continued their fine Hawthorne form. Capping the Sunday card was a first for driver Juan Franco as he recorded the first pari-mutuel victory of his career in the Sunday finale. Franco drove 25-1 shot Parklane Dragon to a 2¼ length score for trainer Nelson Willis in Sunday's tenth race. Stakes Nominations for Two-Year-Old Races Posted The nominees for the four two-year-old stakes races have been posted on the Hawthorne website. Two-year-old filly trotters will compete in the Fox Valley Flan stakes as 31 fillies were nominated. The Kadabra Stakes for two-year-old colt trotters closed with 30 nominations. In the Incredible Tillie Stakes for two-year-old filly pacers, 72 were nominated. The Incredible Finale Stakes for two-year-old colt pacers ended up with 61 nominees. To view the full list of all stakes nominations, visit the Hawthorne website at and click on the "Horsemen" tab. ABOUT HAWTHORNE RACE COURSE Founded in 1891, Hawthorne Race Course is the 4th oldest racetrack in the nation and the oldest sporting venue in Illinois. Located in Stickney, Illinois on the edge of Chicago's city limits, the 125 year old facility hosts thoroughbred racing in the Spring and Fall/Winter, and standardbred harness racing in January and the Summer. The family-owned and operated business has been an innovator in horseracing for more than 100 years and features the nation's most rewarding players program. For additional information: | | @ClubHawthorne. Jim Miller

The clouds hung ominously over the Philadelphia skies on Sunday, but the rain did hold off, ensuring dry conditions for the harness racing at Harrah's Philadelphia. The competitive Sunday tilt featured a winner's over $25,000 lifetime pace (purse $25,000) and two divisions of a non-winner's of $15,000 in their last 5 starts (purse $15,000). In the winners-over event, it was millionaire pacer Mach It So (Tim Tetrick) scoring an impressive front-end victory. Coming off of 3 wins in the preliminary rounds of the George Mortin Levy at Yonkers, Mach It So drew post 7 for the final, and ultimately had no chance the way the race shaped up. Today, the 6-year-old gelded son of Mach Three brushed powerfully to the front, stopping the clock in a stellar 1:50.2 (season's mark). It was the 29th career win for the Jeffrey Bamond trainee, and his 4th of the season. Steve Elliot trainee Rockeyed Optimist (Brett Miller) had a tough hill to climb, starting from post 8 in the event, but was able to establish early pylon position coming away 5th. He had no choice but to come first-over however, after Mach It So cleared the lead. It was a big effort for the gelded son of Rocknroll Hanover, as he gamely fought for second. Rockeyed Optimist continues to be a model of consistency for the owning conglomerate of Perretti, Berkner, Battaglia, and the A&B Stables. He has only been worse than third 3 times in the last 2 seasons. In the first division of the non-winner's of $15,000 last 5, it was Dedi's Dragon (Napolitano Jr.) overcoming post 8 to get the job done. The 6-year-old son of Dragon Again ended up with the pocket seat behind Bettorever (Tim Tetrick), and was able to outclose him in the passing lane, stopping the timer in 1:52.1. It was the 22nd career win for the Paul Holzman trainee, with earnings now just under $800,000. Division two went to Richard Poilucci's Starsky's Dream N (Yannick Gingras). The 6-year-old gelded son of Mach Three made the front end, and stayed on nicely, stopping the clock in 1:51.3. It was the 13th win for the Kelvin Harrison trainee, and his 3rd win of the year. Driver Tim Tetrick led the day with 4 wins. George Napolitano Jr. had 3 wins on the program. There is no live racing at Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday (May 25th). There is live racing on Memorial Day (Monday, May 30th) with a post time of 12:40 PM. Live racing resumes Thursday, post time 12:40 PM. Mike Bozich

Yonkers Raceway's Tuesday afternoon (May 24) "French" trots feature the usual bigger fields and longer distances, but one more ingredient gets added into the mix... ...bigger pots. Beginning with Tuesday's last five races (7 through 11), commingling of the win and show pools between the North American and French-hubbed audiences takes place for all of Yonkers' overseas-exported events throughout the season. "We're extremely pleased and grateful for all the work that was put in to make this happen," Raceway COO Bob Galterio said. "We appreciate everyone's support and invite fans to play into what are now going to be significantly larger pools." After Tuesday, the next scheduled "French" program is June 21 (Yonkers has its live racing hiatus from June 1-12, inclusive). Frank Drucker

Lyons Snyder, beaten favorite in the recent rich Pennsylvania Classic Final at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, showed his bounceback abilities on Sunday night at The Downs, taking his $54,787 division of the first leg of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for harness racing three-year-old pacing colts and geldings in an impressive 1:49.4 over "sloppy" going while taking a new mark.   Scott Zeron, handling the son of Well Said for trainer Mark Silva, sent his colt to the front past the 27 quarter and past early pacesetter Adrian Hanover. Zeron and "Snyder" then carried on to middle splits of 55.2 and 1:22.3, then got a major passing late foe late in the upstart Adrian Hanover, who only five days ago had triumphed in a "nw3" pace locally. Adrian Hanover even put a nose to a head up approaching deep stretch, but Lyons Snyder dug deep and found more to give, taking back a nose advantage on the money, with Settlemoir third just ahead of favored JK Will Power, second in the Classic Final. Lyons Snyder is now 3 for 5 on the season for owners Jeffrey Snyder and Geoffrey Lyons Mound.   The Ron Burke stable, which had finished 1-2-3 in the Pennsylvania Classic Final, won the other two divisions, including a $54,387 cut with Classic winner Check Six in 1:52.3. Check Six, a Somewheresomebeach colt driven by Yannick Gingras, went around early leader Sapient Hanover before a 28 quarter, then saw his Burkemate Manhattan Beach brush to the lead in front of the stands and hit the middle poles in a relatively soft 56.3 and 1:24.1. Check Six vacated the pocket on the far turn, and then sailed by in the stretch, with a four-way battle for second showing Arthur Pendragon, the longest shot in the race, ahead of Manahttan Beach for the place. But Check Six retained his spot in the sophomore spotlight, undefeated in four 2016 starts and now a winner of $328,443 this year and $443,332 lifetime for Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, William Switala and James Martin.   Burke charges were 1-2 in the other $54,787 Sires cut, but it was the lesser-fancied one who wound up in Victory Lane, as Fernando Hanover nipped his favored stablemate Big Top Hanover by a head while taking a new personal best of 1:51.2 despite the slop. Matt Kakaley positioned the Dragon Again gelding, directly behind Big Top Hanover, and the pair swung wide in the lane to try to catch pacesetting Another Daily Copy, doing so only in the last few strides, with Big Top Hanover never in front as Fernando Hanover had the strongest steps late. The famous Burke / Weaver-Bruscemi team owns this new member of the $100,000 Club with Frank Baldachino and the JJK Stables LLC. For the night, Team Burke went 6-2-1-1-1-$81,929 in the Sire Stakes Sunday.   In a $18,000 supporting trot, Armor Hanover overcame post nine to win his fourth starts in five outings since being claimed by trainer Doug and co-owner Leslie Berkeley, winning easily in 1:54.3. His driver was not one you normally link with $97.60 win prices - Yannick Gingras, although remember Gingras is a primary driver for Ron Burke, who currently leads the Pocono training colony in $50+ scores this year.   FINISHING LINES - After four scores at Philly and five at Pocono Saturday, George Napolitano Jr. took those nine victories and added six more on Sunday, equally split between the two eastern Pennsylvania tracks....Five $20,000 divisions of the PA Stallion Series event for the sophomore colt pacers will be featured on the Monday night card.   PHHA / Pocono

Northern Companion, handled by harness racing driver Dave Ingraham, took top honors in Pompano Park's $10,000 Open Handicap Pace on Sunday night (May 22), scoring a photo finish victory over Rockntouch (Mickey McNichol) and Here Comes William (Donald Dupont) in 1:51.4. The eight year-old gelded son of Cambest, trained by Howard Klohr for owner Dorothy Zarza, brushed up first over on the backside to engage the leading Here Comes William around the final turn, edged by turning for home and then held off the furious late bid of Rockntouch to score by a head. Here Comes William was a half-length off the winner while Abreathofreshart and Goldstar Raider had to be content with the minors this night. The victory by Northern Companion was all the more impressive because Here Comes William was able to put up "soft" fractions of :27.4 and :56.4 while Northern Companion was forced to join the fray through an officially timed third quarter of :27.4 with his individual effort being right around :27. A :27.1 finale by Northern Companion sealed the deal with his individual effort showed he paced his final half in :54.1 and last three-quarters in 1:22.4. After the event, driver Dave Ingraham related with a question, "Want to know the definition of a racehorse? Northern Companion is that definition. "He just tries so hard every time he races. He likes to brush and he's tough as nails when it counts. "He went a huge mile tonight, but that's nothing new for him!" In winning for the 48th time career-wise, Northern Companion won for the 39th time at Pompano Park. His 4-1-2 scorecard this semester in 15 starts brings his earnings to $27,109. Lifetime, he's banked $311,451. As the slight favorite at 3 to 2, Northern Companion paid $5.00 to his multitude of faithful. The Florida Amateur Driving Club was represented in two events on Sunday night with PC's Wildcard, the popular winner in the opener for Joe Pennacchio while Yakekty Hanover took the nightcap for Fred Cohen. PC's Wildcard, a seven year-old altered son of Sand Chaser, got picture perfect rating from Pennacchio, holding off the late surging Magic Cheque (Leon Cable) by a half-length in 1:59. Thekeptman (Fred Cohen) was third, 3¼ lengths away while Columbia Lion and Engagedatlexington completed the order of finish in the quintet. Pennacchio sent PC's Wildcard right to the front from his coveted post five and carded panels of :29.1 and 1:00.3 before stepping up the tempo on the backside thwarting any serious bids past the third station in 1:30. Off those panels, PC's Wildcard had plenty left and closed the mile with a :29 finale. Trained by Mike Sweeney for owner Jeff Lemmer, PC's Wildcard won for only the second time this year-26th time career-wise-to send his yearly bankroll to an "aces and eights" $11,188. Lifetime, the gelding has $97,157. As the 3 to 5 tote-board favorite, PC's Wildcard paid $3.40 to win. Pennacchio, by the way, now has 153 amateur driving wins. Yakekty Hanover, handled this night by trainer Fred Cohen for owner Brian Calvert, was forced to achieve his victory from the outside six post in his event, taking on Showing Off (John Campagnuolo, post 5) through a lively opener of :28.2 before assuming control right at that opening marker. From there, the five year-old daughter of Andover Hall carded fractions of :57.3 and 1:27.3 in route to a final time of 1:58.2, a seasonal best, over Showing Off with Zeitgeist (Dein Spriggs) third. Sky Crest and Total Freedom finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the sextet. Yakekty Hanover won for the second time this year in eight starts with the win sending his career bounty over the $50,000 mark--$52,148 to be precise. The winner paid $5.60 as the second choice and gave driver Fred Cohen his 184th career driving win. Also of note on the Sunday night card, the 10 year-old warrior A Fool For Mark, driven by Dave Ingraham for owner Dustin Ingraham, scored his 50th career win. The gelded son of Western Ideal toughed out a game first-over win in 1:53.4 to reach the milestone in his 246th lifetime start. A Fool For Mark, who sports a mark of 1:49.3 over the Vernon Downs oval, has banked $212,419. As the 4 to 1 third choice, A Fool For Mark paid $10.00 to win. Racing resumes Tuesday night with first post set at 7:30 p.m. John Berry for Pompano Park

Harness racing owner-trainer Mike Sinclair's Heavenly Bet ($4.60, part of entry) overcame post 8 and controlled the terms through the middle of the race en route to a 1:55 score over her stablemate Winners Over in the $23,700 Gail's Diner Series Final on Sunday (May 22) afternoon at Tioga Downs.   While Winners Over (Dan Clements) was away most sharply in the field of eight, Scott Coulter gradually worked Heavenly Bet forward through a :27.3 first quarter mile before clearing with just over a circuit to go. The two would continue at the head of the field throughout, with Heavenly Bet spared of pressure due to a failed first-over bid by Ghost Runner (Tom Jackson). After intermediate fractions of :56.4 and 1:24.4 over good going, the 3-year-old Bettor's Delight filly faced a challenge from her stablemate on the far turn. Heavenly Bet proved superior of the Sinclair pair, holding sway by 3/4 length. Well Shaded (Fern Paquet, Jr.) emerged out of traffic to take third, while Shesgotthebeat--a winner in both her preliminary events--only could manage a fourth-place finish after she was compromised by badly stalling cover on the far turn.   The afternoon's other three featured events--an $11,000 Open Pace and two $7,500 second-round divisions of the Nichols True Value Series--all went to driver Tom Jackson, who led all drivers on the 13-race program with that natural hat trick. Meadows invader Nitro Seelster ($4.40) sustained a first-over push to reel in Believe This Bob for a 1:52 Open win, while Fresh Cut ($44.80, 1:54.2) and Le Gambe ($4.30, 1:54.1) prevailed in their respective Nichols True Value splits.   No one hit the 50¢ Pick 5, resulting in a $208.67 carryover to Friday (May 27) evening's program.   Tioga Downs offers four programs next week, with a 6:30 p.m. EDT first post on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and a 1:30 p.m. EDT Memorial Day card on Monday.   by James Witherite, Tioga Downs

Cash Poor (Cash Hall) scored in Sunday's $15,000 Open Trot at Saratoga. Harness racing driver Jim Devaux piloted the Harry Reddick Jr. trainee and moved the speedy highstepper first over just past the half. Cash Poor powered past the race's leader before drawing off to win in 2:03 in the 1 1/16 mile feature. Boli (Wally Hennessey) closed sharply for second in his local debut while veteran Slugfest (Jay Randall) earned the show spot. It was the fourth victory on the season for the eight year old Cash Poor who is owned by Traylor Racing, LLC. He returned $9.30 to win and started an exacta and triple that paid $68.50 and $209, respectively. Live racing resumes at Saratoga on Thursday with a first post time of 4:00pm. Mike Sardella

A nice crowd was on hand for the Preakness Stakes simulcast on Saturday, and they were treated to some fantastic live harness racing to compliment the triple crown action. Flameon kicked off the harness action in race 1 , trotting to a big win in 1:56.2 with Dean Magee aboard for Mark Anderson. It was a big night for Rick Magee, who posted a driving triple on the 8 race card, and delivered with his mare Trot Fudge Sundae ( 1:58.2 ) in race 4 for his owner James Bafia of Illinois. Mr Jackpot made his 2016 debut in race 5 for 3 year old Trotters with big expectations, and he did take control of the race at the 3/8 pole but was out-trotted after the three-quarters by the sharp mare Margins Echo, another Rick Magee charge for owner Mikaela Delgiudice of Minn. And Whatevershesgot rallied past for 2nd in the 2:01.2 mile.  The final race of the night looked on paper to be a face-off between Track record holder Linkjack Hanover (Rick Magee) from the rail, and seasoned gelding Stonebridge Lyric (Nick Roland) from post 8, who opened the Running Aces season with a 1:53 romp on Tuesday night, and Stonebridge Lyric powered away from post 8 to beat Rickybrnthegaragdwn to the lead, and he never looked back from there in a 1:53.4 score. Cantholdmebackmack ( G.Longo ) made a late charge to nose out Restless Yankee ( J.Marino) for 2nd, while Linkjack Hanover ( R.Magee ) made a move at the leader at the top of the lane but was out-kicked home tonight, taking fourth. By Darin Gagne, Running Aces Track Announcer

Harrah's Philadelphia will be host to a power-packed harness racing program on Sunday, May 29th, with a post time of 12:40 PM. There will be three invitationals, each going for a purse of $200,000, as well as an open pace going for $50,000, and two winner's over events (one for trotters and the other for filly & mare pacers) going for a purse of $25,000. The race office will be drawing post positions for all events on Tuesday (May 24th). The Maxie Lee Memorial Trot is named after long-time horsemen Maxie Lee. A native of North Carolina, Lee made a name for himself as a trainer and driver in the Philadelphia area at Liberty Bell and Brandywine. He had back-to-back Delaware Valley Harness Horse of the Year winners in the mid-1970s with Black Gamecock and Valley Ken. In 1990, Lee became the first African-American with a starter in the Hambletonian, with the Peter Haughton winner Backstreet Guy. Last year's Maxie Lee was won by Father Patrick, who was a Dan Patch and O'Brien award winner. The Betsy Ross is an invitational event for filly and mare pacers. The Philadelphia seamstress is widely credited with making the first American Flag in 1776. Last year's Betsy Ross was the stage for a tremendous stretch duel between winner Radar Contact and one of the richest pacing mares of all time Anndrovette, who has won the race in the past. The Dorothy Mullin Invitational for colt and gelding pacers is named after the long-time employee at Liberty Bell's Pennsylvania Harness Racing Commission office. Working there for its entire 1963-1985 lifetime, Mullin was a stalwart during many changes at the northeast Philadelphia track, which was one of the nation's outstanding raceways during the 1960s and 1970s. Serving as an executive assistant and secretary, she made many friends through the years, and was one of the last devotees to using the art of shorthand in her work. The free-for-all event will have a new name each year, changing to honor outstanding contributors and noteworthy figures from the history of harness racing in the greater Delaware Valley area, especially those who were of primary importance in the era of Liberty Bell and/or Brandywine. Among the pacing and trotting superstars expected to be present for this big day of racing include Wiggle It Jiggleit, Rockin Ron, J L Cruze, Bit Of A Legend N, and many more. The Riverview Terrace will be open for lunch between 12:00 PM and 4:00 PM. There will also be a face painter, a balloon artist, prize giveaways, and many other family friendly activities. There will also be a $10,000 guaranteed pick 4 with a .50 cent minimum and 15% takeout starting with race nine. Michael Bozich

Anne Stepien and Russ Adams surged from mid-pack to move into second and third place respectively in week nine of the 2016 harness racing Hambletonian Society Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge sponsored by DRF Harness, Green Acquisition Corporation, The Hambletonian Society, Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Northfield Park, The Raceway at Western Fair District, Red Shores Charlottetown Driving Park, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs. Stepien was the top handicapper for the week, earning 101.55 (339.15 total) points while Adams was just off the pace, finishing second with 94.25 (320.85) points. Jay Hochstetler remains the overall leader with 339.15 points, his lead shrinking slightly to 92.6 points. This makes it nine weeks straight with Hochstetler in the lead. Stepien managed to win three of the four races for the evening, winning the first division of the Graduate Trot with Crazshana ($17.20), the Graduate Pace with Artistic Major ($20.40), and Wiggle It Jiggleit ($3.00) in the Battle of Lake Erie; her only miss was in the second division of the Graduate Trot when Pinkman finished third. Adams also had Crazshana and Artistic Major but his selection of Crescent Fashion finished second in the second division of the Graduate Trot while Foiled Again ran out of the money in the Battle of Lake Erie. It was far back to Dennis O'Hara who finished third for the week with 50.08 points. Following Saturday night’s action, the standings are as follows: May 21, 2016 - Leg #15 Pos Handicapper Total Points Prior Week Points Earned This Week Overall Total Points Position Last Week Points Back 1st Jay Hochstetler 420.05 11.70 431.75 1st             -   2nd Anne Stepien 237.60 101.55 339.15 10th        92.60 3rd Russ Adams 226.60 94.25 320.85 11th       110.90 4th Matt Rose 302.13 17.90 320.03 3rd       111.73 5th Dennis O'Hara 269.28 50.08 319.35 6th       112.40 6th Mark Deutsch 311.75 4.20 315.95 2nd       115.80 7th Adam Friedland 242.03 42.10 284.13 9th       147.63 8th Ray Cotolo 284.08 0.00 284.08 4th       147.68 9th Gordon Waterstone 249.13 14.10 263.23 7th       168.53 10th Rusty Nash 251.43 11.70 263.13 5th       168.63 11th Ray Garnett 242.83 6.30 249.13 8th       182.63 12th Michael Carter 195.10 25.20 220.30 14th       211.45 13th Joe Bengston 188.10 29.40 217.50 15th       214.25 14th Sally Hinckley 197.08 14.10 211.18 13th       220.58 15th Bryan Owen 199.75 8.70 208.45 12th       223.30 This week is a busy week for the handicapping team.  The week begins Monday, with two divisions of the Miss Versatility Trot at Mohawk Raceway.  The the Memorial Day weekend is busy with the Molson Pace on Friday, May 27 at The Raceway at Western Fair District followed by Saturday, May 28’s Art Rooney and Lismore stakes at Yonkers Raceway.   The contest weekend concludes on Sunday, May 28 with a trio of races, the Betsy Ross Mares Invitational, Dorothy Mullen Invitational, and Maxie Lee Memorial at Harrah’s Philadelphia.  As a reminder, visit, where you can find the handicappers’ selections and results, updated standings, as well as see what upcoming stakes are coming up. Allan Schott HANA Harness Racing Coordinator

Harness racing's greatest traveling road show, the CKG Billings Amateur Driving Series, moved back to Freehold Raceway for two trots in the eastern division of the series and when the judges hung the official signs Tony "the Capo" Verruso and Bob "the Headhunter" Hechkoff each emerged victorious in their respective splits. Verruso scored with Sam's Honeybee in 1:59.4 while Hechkoff won with The Franchise in 2:01. No trotter has recently been more prolific in the Billings than Sam's Honeybee, a 10-year old daughter of Victory Sam. Beside her victory on Saturday night, her fifth of the season, Sam's Honeybee has had two wins and a second in her last three starts and has vaulted Verruso near the top of the Billings leaderboard thus far this year. After getting away softly from post five Verruso decided to go first-up with Sam's Honeybee as the field approached the halfway point which proved to be a winning move when favored Shanghai Jack made a break while traveling along the pylons which caused some confusion and allowed Verruso and his charge to gain command as the field headed for the three quarters. Once clear on the lead Sam's Honeybee opened daylight on the field and she cruised home an easy six-length winner over 24-1 shot High Flying, driven by James "Jimmy Boy" Marshall IV. Blazin Delores, in rein to "Mighty Matt" Zuccarello, took home the show dough. "She's been real good and the light rain made the track very much to her liking," Veruso said after his driving victory. "I knew there was a lot of speed so I just sat back and came first up and she was so up in the riggin' I just gave her a tap and she went by and took off." After being sent off as a longshot in her last three starts today Sam's Honeybee wore the favorites crown and returned a $3.60 win mutuel. She's owned by her driver and is trained by Carl Gillespie. Sent off as second choice in his split Hechkoff gave The Franchise a perfect journey. When "Bullet Bob" Davis gunned Wygant Prince to the lead from the three-hole Hechkoff left the gate swiftly with his trotter and fell into the two- hole behind Davis.Wygant Prince then cut the fractions and when the field approached the halfway point they rebuffed a challenge by Maurel N Hardy who was driven by "Hurricane Hannah" Miller. Davis then proceeded to keep Miller on the limb as the field approached the three quarters. Meanwhile Hechkoff, cruising along in the two-hole, bided his time and followed the leaders and when the field rounded the final turn Miller's trotter showed signs of tiring which allowed Hechkoff to rally The Franchise in the lane and collar Wygant Prince and go on to a length triumph. Maurel N Hardy finished third. Owned by his driver and trained by Kyle Spagnola The Franchise paid $7.00 for win.. Billings action continues with a western region trot on Wednesday, May 25, at Northfield Park followed by two non-wagering eastern region contests on Thursday, May 26 at Yonkers Raceway. John Manzi

Wiggle It Jiggleit has traveled to Northfield Park's Flying Turns on two occasions and has two harness racing track records to prove it. Winner of the 2015 Carl Milstein Memorial in 1:49.3, the fasted mile paced at Northfield Park by a three year-old gelding, Wiggle It Jiggleit is now also the fastest four year-old gelding on the half-mile oval by virtue of his easy victory in Saturday's (May 21) $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie. Wiggle It Jiggleit (Mr Wiggles-Mozzi Hanover-Jenna's Beach Boy) is owned by the partnership of George Teague Jr. Inc. and Teague Racing Partnership. He is trained by Clyde Francis. Montrell Teague had the winning drive. Entering the Battle off two runner-up finishes, many analysts were not eyeing Wiggle It Jiggleit, but rather (#5) Freaky Feet Pete as their selection. Freaky Feet Pete entered the event off a nine-race win streak. "Almost every print I looked in has us picked for second, some even for third," said owner George Teague. "I wondered if I was looking at the same program as them, but it even had me doubting our chances in here." As the gate pulled away from the stellar Battle field, Wiggle It Jiggle left no doubt who would reign supreme. He led his rivals from start to finish. Wiggle It Jiggleit started from the rail and led his competition every step of the way through fractions of :28, :55.4, 1:23 and 1:49.4, besting his rivals by 4-1/4 lengths. Pacing an initial quarter in a leisurely :28, and sprinting his final quarter in :26.4, there was no catching Wiggle It Jiggleit. "My horse was unbelievably grabby and ready to roll," explained Montrell Teague. "Although we went slow early, no one would have had a chance to get the lead anyway." Saturday's win marks the 28th score for Wiggle It Jiggleit in 35 career races and increases his bankroll to $2,478,260. Ayers Ratliff

Yonkers Raceway's Saturday night $45,000 co-featured harness racing Open Handicaps were brought to us by the letter B. Ladies First, with Bee a Magician (Brian Sears, $3.50), who took a overnight rest stop and toyed with her six marquee trot rivals. From post No. 6 (in one notch after the inside number was scratched-sick), Bee a Magician paid a :27.4 price to secure the lead. One she paid that toll, the rest of the road was essentially a freebie (:57.4; 1:26.4; 1:54.1). Major Athens (Tyler Buter) pulled pocket early against the Queen, and all that did was cost him second. That went to Allerage Star (Dan Dube), with Major Athens, Luminosity (George Brennan) and Crazy About Pat (Jordan Stratton) grabbing the minor awards. Buen Camino (Jason Bartlett) was outrun in a mile that ended up being a track record for aged mares. For $3.8 million ma'am Bee a Magician, a 6-year-old daughter of Kadabra trained by Nifty Norman for co-owners Mel Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee, it was his third win in as many seasonal starts (lifetime 44-for-68) The exacta paid $19.80, with the triple returning $64.50. Bee a Magician Then, there was Bit of a Legend N (Stratton, $3.50), who prevailed from an impossible locale in the weekly pacing feature. Last among the seven in a pokey race, he saw Great Vintage (Mark MacDonald) seemingly dawdle (:27, :56.2, 1:24.4) with Outrageous Art (Bartlett) engaging first-up. Great Vintage owned a length lead into the lane, then began to get steppy and tire. In the interim, Bit of a Legend N was winding up front last and rallying down the middle of the oval. Sixth turning for home, he was a going-away winner, defeating Outrageous Art by a length-and-a-quarter in 1:52.1. Take it Back Terry (Brennan), Great Vintage and Moonliteonthebeach (Brent Holland) earned the smaller portions. For Levy champ Bit of a Legend N, a 7-year-old Down Under son of Bettor's Delight owned by Harry von Knoblauch and trained by Peter Tritton, he's now 9-for-12 this season. The exacta paid $26.80, with the triple returning $84. Saturday's card also included a $40,000 elimination for the Art Rooney Pace for 3-year-olds. Missile J (Sears, $2.10, part of entry) won the game of musical chairs--nine to eliminate one--in 1:53.2. The American Ideal gelding defeated Rodeo Rock (Dube) by a length-and-three-quarters, with the winner's entrymate, Artmagic (Brennan) third. Joining those three in next week's $300,000 final of the 26th Rooney are Manny, Yankee Artillery, No Shame Blue Chip, Tailgunner Hanover and Tap into Power. Autotune Hanover, last season's winner of the Lawrence B. Sheppard Pace here, was devoid of pace this night and finished ninth. Next Saturday's Rooney is accompanied by the $100,000 Lismore Pace, which attracted six 3-year-old fillies. Both open draws take place Tuesday morning. Frank Drucker

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