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DAYTON, OH. - Two elimination heats went postward at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Thursday night to determine the field for next week's "Stars of the Future" mini-series championship. The trotters that answered the starter's call in the pair of $4000 eliminations were all non-winners of a pari-mutuel race; however two emerged as winners and earned roles as likely favorites for the $8000 final next Thursday. Jailhouse Hooch (Dan Noble) captured the first split in 1:59.1 to top Hey Pancho (Kayne Kauffman) and Autumn Estelle (Hugh Beatty). The winner, a lightly raced five-year-old son of Jailhouse Jesse, broke his maiden in just his 19th lifetime start for owners Cynthia and Nancy Zirkle and trainer David Myers. In addition to the place and show finishers, Timeflies So Do I (Josh Sutton) and Big Emotions (Greg Grismore), who was the fastest fifth place finisher in the two heats, advanced to the championship. Nanohio (driver-trainer Tom Moore Jr.) won the second division in 2:01.1, reaching the wire ahead of Dunn Dealin (Ryan Holton), Kasi (Kayne Kauffman) and Miko Begonia (Jason Haynes), who will join the first elimination survivors in the final. The winning son of Chip Chip Hooray had triumphed in a pair of earlier county fair races, but visited a commercial track winner's circle for the first time for owners Arthur Erford and Kenneth Phillips on Thursday night. Through the first 18 nights of live racing at the new Dayton Raceway, Chris Page sat atop the driver's standings with 34 victories. Dan Noble and Josh Sutton were tied for second with 25 triumphs apiece. Randy Tharps and Greg Grismore were deadlocked for fourth with 20 each, followed by Jeremy Smith 19, Kayne Kauffman and Jason Brewer 17, and Kyle Ater 13. Hollywood Dayton Raceway presents live programs every Monday and Wednesday through Saturday at 6:30 p.m. From the press box at Dayton Raceway

VERNON, NY – Vernon Downs is getting into the Halloween spirit by hosting a race exclusively for grey horses on Halloween Night, Friday, October 31. The race has drawn a field of seven including local favorite The Grey Bullet. The excitement will happen in Race 8 on the 11-race program that begins at 6:45 p.m. “Fewer than one percent of the Standardbred racehorse population is grey so we had to work hard to find enough horses to put this race together, but we think it will be exciting for the fans and so perfect on Halloween night to see the grey horses racing through the stretch at Vernon Downs,” said Scott Warren, Director of Racing. Earlier in the evening, one of the area’s favorite grey horses of all-time, named Four One One, will officially retire in a winner’s circle ceremony. The 12-year-old, owned by Robert Siemski of Utica, raced 135 times at Vernon Downs over an eight-year period. He won 16 races at Vernon Downs including his last career start this past May. Closing Night of the 2014 Vernon Downs racing season is Saturday (November 1) with a special post time of 6:00 p.m. The 11-race card begins with a long-sleeve t-shirt giveaway, free while supplies last, and concludes with a spectacular fireworks display following the last race of the season. Vernon Downs features free admission and free general parking. For more information, visit www.vernondowns.com. by Justin Horowitz, for Vernon Downs

This is a reminder to all horsemen that beginning with the November 14th racing program, any New Jersey Sired horse entered in a race with a condition of non-winners of one, two, three or four pari-mutuel races will race for 60-percent more than the listed purse. The bonus program encompasses both sexes of horse as well as gait. The Meadowlands wanted to issue this reminder prior to the Harrisburg Mixed Sale as there will be lucrative opportunities for New Jersey Sired horses selling at Harrisburg at the upcoming Meadowlands meet. The purse structure will be as follows: Non-winners of one: $10,000 (plus $6,000 for NJ sired horses) Non-winners of two: $12,500 (plus $7,500 for NJ sired horses) Non-winners of three: $15,000 (plus $9,000 for NJ sired horses) Non-winners of four: $17,500 (plus $10,500 for NJ sired horses) In addition, all races with a condition of non-winners of one, two, three or four pari-mutuel races will be written with first preference for all horses that are New Jersey Sired, to ensure that New Jersey sired horses have the most opportunity to compete for this bonus program. Regarding the recent announcement of trainers who have achieved entry into the trainers rewards program, The Meadowlands would like to reiterate that the program does not include races classified B-1 or higher, nor does it include stakes, late closer or early closer events. In addition, the program is limited to the period of November 14, 2014 through February 28, 2015 to ensure our most loyal trainers are able to get their horses raced when The Meadowlands entry box is in its highest demand. The program was designed in conjunction with the SBOANJ with the sole purpose of rewarding those trainers who supported The Meadowlands during the period of time that it proves most difficult to fill the entry box. Any horsemen with questions, comments or concerns should contact either The Meadowlands Race Office or the SBOANJ as any input is valued and appreciated. by Darin Zoccali, for the Meadowlands  

MANALAPAN, NJ - October 29, 2014 - Angels Ransom not only won the $25,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes - Green Acres Final for three-year-old trotters but did so in stakes record time on Thursday, October 29, 2014 at Freehold Raceway. The autumn air must agree with the gelded son of Revenue - Queen of Angels, who now has two straight wins to improve his 2014 record to five wins, three seconds and two thirds in 16 starts. George Brennan was at the lines of Angels Ransom, who crossed the wire in 1:56.4, with a last quarter in 28.3 seconds. It was five and a quarter lengths back to Choco Sun [Chocolatier] in second and Holiday Spirit [Chocolatier] in third. Angels Ransom, trained by Roland Mallar, eclipsed the Green Acres record for three-year-old gelded trotters of 1:58 set by Spat One [Malabar Man] in 2002 and bested the colt mark of 1:57 established by Watch Out [Malabar Man] in 2004. Bred and owned by Michael Andrew of Gorham, ME, Angels Ransom has banked $58,150 this year and $70,760 lifetime. The Green Acres Final was contested as a non-wagering event prior to the card. By Carol Hodes, for the SBOANJ

As the races for divisional honors head toward the finish line, trainer Ron Burke is hoping for continued strong performances from his horses down the stretch. Burke sends 18 horses into Friday's stakes action at Hoosier Park, not to mention five more to Vernon Downs for stakes engagements on Saturday. Among Burke's top contenders at Hoosier are 3-year-old male pacers JK Endofanera and Limelight Beach in the $275,000 Monument Circle, older male pacers Clear Vision, Foiled Again and Sweet Lou in the $211,500 Hoosier Park Pacing Derby, and 3-year-old female trotter Market Rally in the $193,000 Moni Maker Stakes. "There is still money left out there, so you want to finish up strong with some of these," Burke said. "We usually tend to do good in races at the end of the year. We've always done that. It's been more of a tradition that we tend to start poorly and do better late. Hopefully it will continue." Burke's stable already has earned a record $23.75 million this year and is nearing 1,000 wins for the second consecutive season. His earnings are the most for any trainer in horse racing, more than $3.70 million ahead of Thoroughbred leader Todd Pletcher. Last year, Burke's horses won 262 races over the final three months of the campaign. Only three other trainers won more races - in the entire year. This season, Burke has 109 victories in October, including 25 in stakes events. JK Endofanera is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the Monument Circle, a race won by Burke two of the past three years. JK Endofanera brings a four-race win streak to the race, including victories in the American-National Stakes and a division of the Tattersalls Pace. Last week he won a division of the Circle City at Hoosier. For the year, the son of Art Major-Presidential Lady has won 10 of 15 races and $936,145 for breeder/owner 3 Brothers Stables. Joe Holloway-trained Always B Miki, who also won a Tattersalls division and has captured seven of his last eight starts, is the 5-2 second choice, followed by Limelight Beach at 3-1. Limelight Beach has won four of his last five races, including the Little Brown Jug. The gelded son of Somebeachsomewhere-Benear has banked $539,118 this season. He is owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, M1 Stable, and Wingfield Brothers. "All my 3-year-olds have been real good recently," said Burke, who also has At Press Time, Forty Five Red, and Big Boy Dreams entered in the Monument Circle. "They're finishing up the year strong. I'm glad about that. "The Monument Circle is our best two shots (Friday) with JK (Endofanera) and Limelight Beach. We'll see how that works. They've got to beat Always B Miki." McWicked leads all 3-year-old male pacers in purses, with $1.01 million, followed by JK Endofanera, All Bets Off, He's Watching, Always B Miki, and Limelight Beach. "There are three or four horses (that could win divisional honors); whoever wins the Breeders Crown is probably the 3-year-old of the year," Burke said. "It's going to be exciting. It's not like last year, where it already was all decided (with Captaintreacherous). Coming into the Breeders Crown this year, there's still a lot up for grabs." Clear Vision is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the Hoosier Park Pacing Derby, followed by Foiled Again at 5-2 and Sweet Lou at 7-2. Burke-trained Bettor's Edge and Easy Again also are part of the 10-horse field. Foiled Again won the Hoosier Park Pacing Derby - then named the Indiana Pacing Derby and raced at Indiana Downs - in 2011 and 2012. Clear Vision is coming off a win last week in the Dayton Pacing Derby, where he edged Foiled Again by a nose. Sweet Lou won 10 consecutive races during the summer, and has earned $958,558 this year, but heads to the Pacing Derby trying to snap a three-race losing streak. "Lou trained great this week," Burke said. "I went out and trained him myself on Tuesday and I was very happy with him. I think he'll be back to himself. "Bettor's Edge and Clear Vision drew great spots and Foiled is still Foiled. Hopefully we should do alright. They've stayed sound all year, all of them, and raced great. I could see them finishing up the year great too." Burke's Rose Run Parker is the 4-1 second choice in the $230,000 Carl Erskine Trot for 3-year-old male trotters. Multiple-stakes-winner Father Patrick, from the stable of Jimmy Takter, is the 3-5 morning line favorite. Takter also has the top choices in the Moni Maker - Shake It Cerry and Lifetime Pursuit - followed by Burke's Market Rally, who is a two-time New York Sire Stakes champion trying open stakes company for only the third time in her career. "She's in very tough, against very good horses," Burke said. "But I've always wanted to see what Market Rally would do against top horses, so I'm excited to see what she'll do there." by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications

Fresh from making six appearances in the Cal Expo winners circle last Saturday night, including five of his own trainees, Steve Wiseman comes into this weeks action atop both the driver and trainer standings. "I had a lot of horses in the right spots, so I thought it was going to be a good night, Wiseman related. "As far as being the leading driver and trainer, that was the goal coming into the meet. Ive never won the training title before, so that would be nice, and Ive got a great crew to help me." Wild About Eagle overcame the tough No. 9 post to get the job done last weekend while carrying the banner of Kathy Plested and Mark Benvenga. Shes awfully sharp right now and on top of her game, her mentor said. I think she had an advantage these first few weeks because shed been racing while some of the others took the summer off. Another Wiseman trainee who got his picture taken last Saturday was the trotter Jimmy Shin, who sat a perfect pocket trip and won going away. The 10-year-old is now at the $384,000 earnings plateau. "I claimed him here at the last meet with the idea of racing him in Minnesota. He did pretty well until the end of the meet, when I probably had him a couple of classes too high." Wiseman said. Jimmy Shin had to settle for a second in his first appearance at this stand after coming from far back and getting a less than ideal journey. He had a poor cover flow that night and would have won if I could have had him just a little closer. As bad as that trip was, everything worked out perfectly last time. El Azteca getting the marquee treatment El Azteca, perfect in two starts at this meet and victorious in 15 of his last 25 trips to the post, looks to keep the momentum going in Saturday nights Open II Trot. An 11-race program is on tap with first post set for 6:15 p.m. Racing is now being conducted on Saturday and Sunday nights, with first post on Sunday at 4:45 p.m. Plans call for a three-night-a week schedule starting on December 26, with Friday racing being added to the mix. El Azteca is a 5-year-old son of Panama Hanover who is owned, trained and was bred by Marco Rios and he will once again have the services of James Kennedy. El Azteca comes into this assignment with $120,000 in his bank account and a 1:54 3/5 career standard that was established at Hoosier Park in early June. He went to the sidelines with an issue following that score, and has returned to capture both of his appearances at this meeting. The hard-hitting California-bred got a second-over journey in his October 18 tally here while hanging a head decision on Franks Best, then did the work in first-over fashion lat week while once again prevailing by a head over Franks Best in an ultra-game decision for Rios and Kennedy. Franks Best is another outstanding state-bred trotter who is just shy of the $200,000 earnings plateau with a 1:56 2/5 mark. The 7-year-old Armbro Scribe offspring is owned, trained and was bred by Bob Johnson and Mooney Svendsen will once again be in the sulky. In his three starts at this meet, Franks Best has two seconds and a third, beaten by a grand total of a half-length in those three outings. The co-feature on the evening is an Open II Pace that finds Del Rio Seelster heading the cast while doing his work from the outside slot. By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness

Jason Settlemoir will be honored at the upcoming Awards Banquet of the Monticello Goshen Chapter USHWA on November 16. A man who wears and has worn many hats in the harness racing industry will be the recipient of the chapter's Good Guy Award. At age 37 Settlemoir is already accomplished but his star continues to rise and it seems that there is nothing in the Standardbred sport that he can't do. His list of accomplishments is amazing. However, much of his fortune was dictated by fate. First his association with trainer/driver Terry Holton and then later with a meeting with Dave Stoltz. When Jason was a youngster in Newark, Ohio he found out that Terry Holton moved and was on his paper route and it was his association with Holton that helped direct Settlemoir's future. "When Terry found out I was interested in harness racing he took me under his wing. He was like a dad to me and took me with him when he raced around the fairs and raceways and taught me all about racing. Terry had wanted me to be a catch-driver but I refused to clean stalls," Settlemoir remembered. "When we traveled I'd practice calling races in the car and I enjoyed it. So instead Terry helped me to call races at some of the fairs. I got to call my first race at the Hartford (Ohio) Independent Fair." But vivid in his memory is the time Terry helped him to get me the announcer's job at the West Virginia State Fair. "I was only 13 years old at the time so I had to get my mother and grandmother to drive me there, " he laughed. Settlemoir graduated high school in 1995 then matriculated at Ohio State University and then at Mount Vernon Nazarene University. In 1995 he went to work at Scioto Downs for Bob Steele and Jerry Kalb and he was there for nearly 10 years where there wasn't anything there that he didn't do, or learn to do. "I was the simulcast program manager, worked in the money room, worked in admissions and programs, assistant race secretary, track announcer, you name it I did it," Settlemoir said. Two mottos that Settlemoir said he learned and lives by are; "I will never ask someone to do something that I wouldn't do or have not done and the other is 'an ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of gold'. In 2005 he worked for a while at the USTA as director of advertising and it was there that he had a conversation with a customer he met at Scioto Downs Dave Stoltz; a meeting that would forever change Settlemoir's life. "Dave asked me how would I like to work for a good friend of his who had two race tracks in New York. He gave me his number and told me to call him. I did. It was Jeff Gural and he asked me if I'd like to join his organization. Unfortunately it was at a time when I had many personal problems; my granddad had recently passed away and Terry Holton had advanced pancreatic cancer, I thanked Mr Gural and told him at this time I can't." However it wasn't too long after that initial phone call that Settlemoir again heard from Gural. This time Gural called him and this time they connected. "I asked Mr. Gural about a contract and he told me he doesn't do contracts. He told me to shake his hand and we'll have an agreement," Settlemoir explained. "I guess you could say I'm a pretty lucky guy that I got an opportunity to work for him. He's a man of his word." Initially Jason was heavily involved with both Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs but when Gural and his company started the New Meadowlands Settlemoir had more on his plate. And he responded to his new duties magnificently. In 2006 he was awarded the U.S. Harness Writers Association's Lew Barasch Breakthrough Award for his work in opening up Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs and was inducted into the Upstate New York Chapter of USHWA's Hall of Fame in 2011. Settlemoir is also simulcast director for the Little Brown Jug in Delaware, Ohio as well as the second announcer at the legendary racetrack. He is vice president of Harness Tracks of America; and past president of the U.S. Harness Writers Association and sits on the board of directors for the United States Trotting Association, and in September of this year Settlemoir was elected to the prestigious Little Brown Jug Society. He is also active in the sport as a Standardbred owner and he was appointed to the Board of Directors for American Racing and Entertainment in September 2011. Also in 2011, he received the Tioga County United Way Appreciation Award. Jason sat on the board of directors for the Tioga County Chamber of Commerce, the Southern Tier Red Cross and the Tioga County United Way, where he was chair for the annual campaign drive before making his move east. Currently he is the CEO/GM of New Meadowlands Racetrack and Winners OTW at Bayonne, N.J., and is vice president of racing, simulcast and sponsorship for American Racing and Entertainment (Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs). He and his wife, Lori, reside in Cream Ridge, New Jersey, with their sons Jeffrey and Travis. Born in the Buckeye State, Settlemoir is an avid fan of Ohio State sports and Cleveland Browns football. He likes spending time at home with the family. by John Manzi, for Monticello-Goshen Chapter USHWA

Monticello, NY--Few harness racing horse breeders have made a larger multi-media splash this year than Crawford Farms of Durhamville, New York.   From the second-story Crawford Farms mural at The Meadowlands to the Red Mile Grand Circuit meet where the water trucks proudly displayed the farm’s iconic insignia, racing fans are constantly reminded of the dynamic duo’s substantial commitment to the sport.  Evident across multiple digital platforms, the Crawford’s are very active on social media and have produced and broadcast several TV commercials during key, nationally televised harness races, including the Hambletonian.   Driven by a passion for the sport, and a desire to help harness racing prosper, the Crawford’s have sponsored this season’s Meadowlands Pace, Kindergarten Classic, Crawford Farms Trot and the Red Mile Grand Circuit meet.  In addition to vast purse support, they have recently completed a state-of-the-art equine therapeutic spa, 40-stall barn, and an 8-stall horse exerciser at their central New York breeding & racing operation.   For their considerable investment in the future of the Standardbred and support of harness racing and breeding in the state of New York, the Monticello-Goshen Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association has awarded Crawford Farms their annual Excelsior Award.   The award will be presented on Nov. 16 at the chapter’s 56th annual awards banquet.  Somewhat surprised when they learned of the award, Michelle and Albert Crawford were humbled by the honor.   “We love this business, and we are very pleased that someone has noticed and appreciated our efforts” noted Albert, son of the late Jim Crawford who was the affable former president of the Harness Horse Breeders of New York State.    “My wife and I are committed to breeding top horses in New York State and supporting the industry in the process.  We know that it is a considerable challenge, but we are rolling up our sleeves and eager to do the work!”   Michelle, the spark that energizes much of the daily operations added, “Every day that I am on our farm I am amazed at the work ethic and dedication that our staff contribute to our vision.  Whether we are breeding, foaling, weaning or performing racehorse rehab, they always give 110%, and for that I am very grateful.”   The farm, which was founded in 1966 by Jim and Patricia Crawford, continues to be a family affair.  The 100-acre nursery has continued to expand not only their footprint, but also their broodmare band.  Their yearling consignments to Lexington and Morrisville have continued to improve in scope and scale.   When they are not raising future harness racing stars, Michelle and Al own and operate one of the most successful healthcare lending institutions in the nation, Bankers Healthcare Group.  In fact, BHG was ranked as the 5th Fastest Growing Private Company by Inc.   Formed in 1992 from a modest group of four finance experts, BHG now employs close to 200 business professionals.   From the Monticello-Goshen Chapter USHWA  

Quaid Racing's Jake Quaider continued his late season surge as he knocked off six other Illinois conceived and foaled two-year-old trotting colts by one and one-half lengts in Wedneday's $40,200 Cardinal Stake at Balmoral Park. The final time was 1:58.2. Confidently handled by leading driver Casey Leonard the altered son of Photo Color--Grace Elizabeth was placed in mid-pack while Powerful Above All (Todd Warren) led the field through splits of 29.2 & 59.1. Getting underway while following live cover from his main rival RT Habanero (Dave Magee) as the field moved around the final bend, Leonard was able to drop in right behind that colt as the pair quickly swallowed up a tiring Powerful Above All while rolling by the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:29.1. Through the lane Jake Quaider effortlessly began to reel in RT Habanero, cruising right by that one while under very minimal urging from Leonard for his third win in eight trips postward. RT Habanero was forced to settle for the runner-up role while Captain Greedy (JD Finn) was a distant third, 5 ¼ lengths behind the winner. Now under the guidance of veteran conditioner Nelson Willis after starting his career in the barn of Ervin Miller, Jake Quaider boasts a record of 3-2-2 in 8 starts with earnings of $51,560. Bet as though defeat was out of the question Jake Quaider returned $2.60, $2.10 and $2.10. The 10-cent Hi-Five was not hit on the night's final race so there will be a carryover of more than $9,600 added to Saturday's Hi-Five wager at Balmoral Park. The Hi-Five, the "ultimate get-out" wager will be held on Race 13 on Saturday's Balmoral Park card. Casey Leonard and Jake Quaider made it look easy in Wednesday's $40,200 Cardinal Stake for 2yo trotting colts. by Tom Kelley, for Balmoral Park  

Pompano Beach, FL...October 29, 2014...Andover America, the ultra-game warrior owned by Mc Trade Enterprises, kept his record unblemished at Pompano Park for the new season by scoring his Third Straight win in the $10,000 Open Handicap Trot on Wednesday night. The nine year-old altered son of Andover Hall stopped the timer in 1:56.3 for Bruce Ranger, eking out a narrow win from the late charging Its Payday Friday, driven by Dan Clements--the winning margin a neck. Gale Warning, with Mike Micallef handling the lines, finished third while Majestic Won was next with Naughty Not Nice earning the final award in the sextet. Andover America, who had shown nothing but "1's" on his past performance lines in his first two wins, tried to repeat that strategy this night by blasting out of the gate and taking the field to the opener in :28.3. Right at that first station, driver Mike Micallef sent his own warrior, Gale Warning, on the prowl and took over the lead three-eighths into the mile and got over to the half in :57.1 and continued to lead the way past the 3/4s in 1:26.3. Turning for home, Ranger yanked on the right line, engaged Gale Warning in a duel, gamely outfought that one and then held off the furious late surge of Its Payday Friday to score in the photo finish. The latter, incidentally, made a bobble leaving and spotted the field up to 10 lengths before regaining his composure while almost pulling off the upset. In a post race interview, Ranger said, "Andover (America) is just a wonderful racehorse...a dream racehorse. Yes, he might be a step or two slower than his peak days a couple of years ago, but he sure knows how to win." When asked about whether he was worried about the late rally of Its Payday Friday, Ranger admitted, "I never saw him. When he made that jump at the start, I thought, 'well, that's one less than I have to worry about.' Let's just say the wire came at the right time. The victory sent Andover America's lifetime earnings to $780,890. At 1 to 5 on the tote-board, the winner paid $2.60 to his loyal followers. Racing continues on Saturday night with a key matchup featuring Panocchio and Prairie Jaguar. Duc Dorleans looks to spoil the party for the highly regarded aforementioned, coming into the action with the richest scorecard in the field--$385,356 to go along with a mark of 1:49.2. Post time is 7:30 p.m. by John Berry, for Isle Pompano Park

It was a dark and grey night - literally - at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, as eight grey and roan horses went behind the gate for the annual Grey Ghost and Poltergeist Pace on Wednesday night. On a cool night and a track listed as sloppy after rain throughout the day, the Invitational Race, the fourth on the card, got underway at 7:25pm. Six Gun, trained by Nick Sodano and driven by Anthony Napolitano, shot out of the gate quickly, followed by the Tyler Buter-driven Jonsie Jones, the powerhouse mare shipping in from Yonkers, and Delco Rocknroll, another Yonkers shipper with Andrew McCarthy in the bike, and Gotta Love Him, last year's winner of this race, settled into fourth, with Pocono's leading driver George Napolitano Jr. in the bike. Waltzacrossthewire took a bad step early and was way back. Fractions were quick,and Delco Rocknroll took over at the half in 54.4, leading the ghostly greys. Putnams Storm with Pat Berry in the bike shot past and stole the lead at the ¾ pole, but I'm Blue Too, racing for the new barn of Rene Allard and driven by Simon Allard, sailed past to win by 4 lengths. Delco Rocknroll finished third. Final time was 1:51.4 I'm Blue Too (General Aidid - Broadway Melody) now has 8 wins from 18 starts for the season. Pocono Downs Week In Review The race was sponsored by the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame in Goshen, NY, who were on hand with an exhibit honoring the great trotter Greyhound. The night was also a fundraiser for the trotter's exhibit at the museum, and commemorative wristbands were sold. The Winner's Circle was filled with children of Pocono horsemen, in costume, and representatives of the Harness Racing Museum. The adage says that speed kills, and nowhere is that more accurate than in the sport of harness racing. Sometimes it pays to be patient and wait for an opportunity to rally in a race, but the most surefire way for a horse to take all the variables out of the equation is to head straight for the front end of the field and go as hard as it can, trusting in its ability to get home above all else. Our top two award winners displayed some serious top-end speed this week. Let’s take a look at their exploits and hand out the Weekly Awards. PACER OF THE WEEK: SPEED AGAIN It’s always fun to watch a horse improve within the course of a season. When last we saw Speed Again, the 5-year-old gelding from the Ron Burke barn put together an outstanding performance on August 9, scorching a mid-priced condition field in a career-best 1:48:2. Propelled by that big mile, he moved up to face tougher competition in his stint at Harrah’s at Philadelphia. First he performed well in a trio of races against the winners of over $25,000 grouping at Harrah’s, hitting the board twice and winning once. In his final start there, he stepped up to an Open Handicap group and rolled on the front end to win by two lengths in 1:50:4. His return to Pocono on Saturday would also come in the Open group, against a field that included P H Supercam, a powerhouse who had captured three straight Open Handicaps at Yonkers. None of that mattered to Speed Again and driver Anthony Napolitano when they powered to the front end right from the first few steps of the race. P H Supercam lurked behind him in the pocket for the whole mile, but Speed Again had an answer for him in the front stretch, holding him off to score by a neck in 1:49. Considering he’s already beating Open fields with consistency, any more improvement by Speed Again would almost be unfair. Other top pacers include: Lark Seelster (Anthony Napolitano, Luis Collazo), a mare who moved up in class on Tuesday night and scored her second consecutive condition win, this one coming in 1:52:1; McBoogie (George Napolitano Jr., Dean Eckley), who moved up in class and switched barns but still tore up a $15,000 claiming group on Saturday night in 1:52:1 for his third straight win; and I’m Blue Too (Simon Allard, Rene Allard), who rallied for a victory in a career-best 1:51:4 in Wednesday night’s Grey Ghost & Poltergeist Pace, Pocono’s annual Halloween-themed race featuring only grey and roan pacers. TROTTER OF THE WEEK: HEZATRAIN This 5-year-old gelding from the barn of trainer Allan Johnson hit a bit of a bumpy stretch in his season in September and October. After winning five out of seven races to start his campaign, he suffered a streak of four straight races both at Pocono and Saratoga without even hitting the board. He returned to MSPD on October 21 and found his stride against our lowest condition group, rolling to a romping win in a new career-best time of 1:53:3. Feeling confident once again following that win, Hezatrain moved back up on Tuesday into a condition for non-winners of $8,000 in the last five starts. Once again driver George Napolitano Jr. was determined to hustle the gelding to the front end, but on his effort to get there he encountered some traffic on the first turn and was forced to make an early three-wide move. Even though Hezatrain reached the lead before the front stretch ended, such a tough journey to get there threatened to make him vulnerable. Those concerns were doused as the race progressed. Hezatrain easily fended off any pressure, lengthening the lead until he was comfortably out in front of the rest. He was able to gear down in the final strides and still beat the rest of the field by a solid four lengths with a winning time of 1:54:3. That’s two straight romps for Hezatrain, a trotter who’s back to his winning ways as the season winds to a close. Honorable mention on the trotting side includes: Rossini (Howard Parker, Jim Raymer), who dominated a condition field on Saturday night in 1:52:2, a new career-best which matched the fastest of the week at MSPD; Proud Moment (Ron Pierce, Rene Allard), who went a career-best mile of 1:52:2, tied for the fastest trot of the week, to win Tuesday night’s featured claiming handicap trot; and Four Starz Speed (Ron Pierce, Rene Allard), who made it two in a row and three of his last four with a claiming handicap victory on Wednesday night in 1:55. LONG SHOT OF THE WEEK: LINDY’S FIREWORKS On a wild Tuesday night full of upsets, this trotting filly topped them all, winning a condition easily with Anthony Napolitano in the bike at 85-1, paying off $172.40 on a $2 win ticket. DRIVER OF THE WEEK: ANTHONY NAPOLITANO Anthony’s finest year at Pocono continued with a –win week, including victories on Saturday with 24-1 shot Salevster Stallion and on Tuesday with 85-1 bomber Lindy’s Fireworks. TRAINER OF THE WEEK: MIKE WATSON Watson has been threatening to crack the Top 10 of the Pocono training standings all year long, and his pair of victories on Saturday night will certainly help his cause. That will do it for this week, but we’ll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at jbeviglia@mohegansunpocono.com. by Jennifer Starr and Jim Beviglia, for Pocono Downs  

ANDERSON, Ind.-October 30, 2014-It is nothing out of the ordinary to see a field of horses line-up behind the Hoosier Park starting gate but racing fans at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, October 30 will have the chance to see something they don't often see. A field of all grey pacers will line up behind the starting gate to battle it out in two divisions of the $10,000 "Grey Ghost Halloween Pacing Derby" at Hoosier Park. Hoosier Park's Racing Secretary, Scott Peine assembled two fields of six "ghostly" pacers in honor of the upcoming Halloween holiday. According to the United States Trotting Association, less than five percent of all harness horses are grey in color. Slated as the fifth and seventh races on the 12-race card, the "Grey Ghost Halloween Pacing Derby" will feature two divisions and are aptly named "The Freddy Krueger" division and "The Jason Vorhees" division. In the opening division, Trace Tetrick has been enlisted to drive the morning line favorite, Maddysonofagun, from post four for trainer Tom T. Tetrick. The four-year-old gelded son of Modern Art will look to score his second victory of the season for owners Mary Alice and Tom D. Tetrick. In the second division, Casey's Lil' Harry will look to score his second win of the season as the 5-2 morning line choice for driver Don Harmon from post five. Trained by Krista Harmon, the grey gelding is sired by Hawaiian Cowboy and owned by John Moody. Just one day later, Hoosier Park will offer arguably the best 14-race card of the 2014 live racing season on Friday, October 31 as Grand Circuit racing action returns to Hoosier Park's seven-eighths mile oval. Hoosier Park will host a standout card that includes the $275,000 Monument Circle Pace for three-year-old pacing colts, the $230,000 Carl Erskine trot, and the $211,500 Hoosier Park Pacing Derby. In conjunction with the Halloween festivities, Hoosier Park will also host the 2014 Monster Bash on Friday, October 31 beginning at 9:00 p.m. in the Terrace level of the grandstand. The 2014 Monster Bash will offer live music, drink specials and a costume contest with a top prize of $1,000 in each of the contest categories. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 29, 2014 -- Lady's Dude, Ohio's champion 3-year-old trotter, showed Wednesday at The Meadows that he doesn't need to take his state with him. He set a track record 1:53.2 while capturing a $12,200 conditioned event for his fourth consecutive victory. The time, a career best, knocked a tick from the previous mark for sophomore gelding trotters jointly held by Rembrandt Spur and Rose Run Mac. Lady's Dude was sitting third for Dave Palone when he launched an overpowering first-over move and rolled home, defeating TSM Photo Bugger by 7-1/4 lengths. Bound For Fame earned show. Ron Burke trains Lady's Dude, a son of Victory Sam-Lady's Star who was unraced at 2 but has banked $162,736 this year, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Johnny Yoder. Palone drove four winners and Jim Pantaleano three on the 14-race card. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

DOVER, Del.--- Long time campaigner Believe This Bob scored the fastest of 11 qualifying races on Wednesday, Oct. 28 morning at Dover Downs. Driven by Ross Wolfenden, Believe This Bob notched a 1:54.2 victory beating Winbak Carl (Tony Morgan) and Feel Like A Fool (Corey Callahan) to the finish line. Sweet Rock, one of three winning drives by Allan Davis won easily in 1:54.4. Other wins were turned in by Jolt Of Fire (1:55.2-George Dennis);Seboomook Fool Yah (1:56.2-Allan Davis); Bobbies Power Play (1:56.2-Bryan Truitt); Framed Art (1:56.2- Art Stafford); Pinearosa (1:57-Eddie Davis Jr.); and Motorino (1:57.1-Allan Davis). Dover Downs re-opens for its 46th season this Sunday, Nov. 2 with a full 15-race program starting at 5:30 p.m. by Marv Bachrad, for Dover Downs

Harrah's Philadelphia will have a special post time on Friday, October 31st of 2:30 PM.   A field of eight mid-level conditioned pacers lined up behind the starter for the Wednesday feature from Harrah's Philadelphia.   The wagering public put their support behind veteran gelding McClelland (Brett Miller). The 8-year-old son of Cam's Card Shark is a 32 time winner, with career earnings of over $435,000.   At the start, it was the classy Southwestern Dream (Yannick Gingras) leaving aggressively from the outside. He was parked to an opening quarter in :27. His lead was short-lived however, as Yonkers invader Ideal Champ (Tim Tetrick) quickly wheeled by just after the quarter pole.   After a half in :55.2 (:28.2), Ideal Champ was challenged by race-favorite McClelland, who drew within a half-length of the leader at three-quarters, which was timed in 1:22.3 (:27.1).   As they turned for home, Ideal Champ kicked away from a stalling McClelland to win by three lengths, stopping the clock in 1:50.4 (:28). Southwestern Dream finished second, while Ooh Bad Boy (David Miller) rallied for third.   The winner paid $11.40, keying an exacta that paid $33.80, and a trifecta worth $279.60. Ideal Champ was one of two winners for owner Francis Azur and trainer Kevin Mc Dermott.   In other news, driver Tim Tetrick had six driving wins on the afternoon, following up Yannick Gingras' six driving wins on Sunday's program. Tim Tetrick is approximately 20 wins behind Geo. Napolitano Jr. in the driving standings, with Yannick Gingras currently third.   Harrah's Philadelphia will have a special post time on Friday, October 31st of 2:30 PM.   by Mike Bozich, for Harrah's Philadelphia

Batavia, NY---For the fourth time this meet, Batavia Downs leading driver Kevin Cummings won five races on one card Wednesday night (Oct. 29) to extend his insurmountable lead there in the dash category. His pentamerous outing included visits to the Purple Haze winners circle with Western Heart ($2.90), Serendipitous ($4.80), Outoftexas ($4.70), Aberarder Smitty ($11.40) and Tymal torch ($6.10). For the current Batavia Downs meet, Cummings has 122 wins, almost double his nearest competitor, along with a gaudy UDR of .386. . For the year he has 298 wins and is currently twelfth in North America for UDR with a .360. His current win total, UDR and just under $1.4 million in earnings are all career bests. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

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