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YONKERS, NY, Friday, April 15, 2016-Yonkers Raceway's Blue Chip Matchmaker continued Friday night, with a pair $40,000 divisions comprising the fifth and final preliminary round. The evening began with Krispy Apple (Jason Bartlett, $7), eschewing an early pocket, then lasting on the lead. From post position No. 2, she was immediately seated early by Cinamony (Yannick Gingras), but wanted nothing to do with that. She then took over before completed her rounds (:27.4, :56.3, 1:24.2, 1:52.2) for a second consecutive series Sell a Bit N (Jordan Stratton), as the 3-2 favorite, had left into a three-hole. She elected not to move first-up, then found herself wedged behind a tiring Cinamony. Sell a Bit N did get the passing lane, but not nearly in time to track down Krispy Apple, who-as the second choice-prevailed by three-quarters of a length. Carolsideal (Dan Dube), a uncovered winner a week ago, was an uncovered third here. For Krispy Apple, an 8-year-old Western Ideal ma'am co-owned by Bamond Racing and Joseph Davino and trained by Jeffrey Bamond Jr., she's now 2-for-6 this season (2-for-5 in series) after her 42st career victory. The exacta paid $20.80, with the triple returning $62.50. The second event saw a repeating Yagonnakissmeornot (Dube, $5.20) pick off a badly-drifting Mach it a Par (George Brennan). The latter, victimized by a horrid shuffle-out last week, had no one to blame but herself in this one. From post No. 2, the 13-10 fave worked around "Yagonnakissme" and set tepid intervals (:28.1, :58, 1:26). Mach it a Par opened a couple of lengths entering the lane, but her desire to meet the crowd was about to cost her. Yagonnakissmeornot, as the second choice, stayed on the straight and narrow to win by a length in 1:53.2. Skippin' By (Gingras) was a three-hole third. For Yagonnakissmeornot, a 7-year-old daughter of The Panderosa co-owned (as Allard Racing) by (trainer) Rene Allard, Yves Sarazain and Kapildeo Singh, she's now 3-for-6 this season (3-for-5 in series) The exacta paid $10.80, with the triple returning $57.50. Note that series points leader (entering this round) Al Raza N was AWOL for the last leg. Saturday night's card brings the fifth (final) round of the George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series. Three, $50,000 divisions (races 5 through 7) comprise this last incarnation. Both series finals (and their respective consolations) are set for next Saturday night, Apr. 23. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

Let go at a juicy 25-1, Stirling Euphoria moved powerfully first over to score the upset in Monday's opening leg of the Do Me Honor Pace at The Meadows. Lenore Karidian took the other $17,500 opening-leg division in the event for harness racing 3-year-old fillies. The series is named for Do Me Honor, a fast-class pacer who has banked more than $682,000 and is currently racing for owner/trainer Bill Bercury. A lightly raced filly making only her fifth career start, Stirling Euphoria responded like a seasoned veteran when Dave Palone sent her first over -- in the slop -- after the leader, Wasaga Beach. She spurted clear and scored in a career-best 1:56, surviving an inquiry for a possible pylon violation. Terror Grin rallied for second, 1-1/4 lengths back, with Hooves On First third. Ben Davis trains the daughter of Western Ideal-Chattanooga for Brent Hopper, S&S Racing Stable and Kenneth York. In the $22,500 Filly & Mare Not Listed Preferred/Preferred Handicap Pace, Spreester moved second over to victory for Aaron Merriman, trainer Bercury and owner Renee Bercury. The 5-year-old daughter of American ideal-Rodeo Spree, who now boasts $431,271 in career earnings, triumphed in 1:53.3, 1/2 length better than Show Runner. Set Me Up was third. The day's honoree, Do Me Honor, competed in the event and finished fifth. Jim Pantaleano piloted six winners -- including a pair for his wife, trainer Christen Pantaleano -- while Palone fashioned a triple on the 15-race card. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

It looked like In The Clear was all but beat at the three-quarter marker in Buffalo Raceway's $8,600 featured pace on Saturday night (April 2). That wasn't the case however as the 5-year harness racing gelding came from absolutely nowhere and nipped Western Alumni by a nose in 1:56.4 over the good track.   Sitting sixth and trailing by 4-1/4 lengths with a final panel to go, In The Clear (Ron Beback Jr.) fanned out five-wide in the stretch and roared past the shocked Western Alumni (Jim McNeight) in the photo. Beach Hero (Shawn McDonough) was third as the top five finishers were less than a length apart at the wire.   Owned by Michael Torcello and trained by Gerry Sarama, In The Clear (Western Ideal-Orchid Island) has found the winner's circle three times in 10 starts this season. The victory moved his 2016 earnings to $14,352 and $149,707 lifetime.   Todd Cummings scored a four-bagger in the sulky while Drew Monti tripled. Sarama led the conditioners with a pair of victories.   Racing will resume on Wednesday night at 5 p.m. with an 11-race program. The Pick-5, which starts in the fifth race, has a carryover of $2,795.   For more information including the latest news, results, race replays and upcoming promotions, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

Art History ($3.60) has been on a tear of late, reeling off three straight wins over increasingly difficult competition. His most recent triumph came on Saturday (March 19) evening's featured $20,000 top-level pace at The Meadowlands, giving harness racing driver Scott Zeron one of his four wins on the 12-race program.   Art History controlled most of the terms in the featured sixth event and held sway from a hard-closing K-Lees Shakenbake, employing a :26.1 last quarter to prevail over top-level company in 1:51.2 over fast going. Scott Zeron used the 5-year-old Western Ideal gelding to seize the lead after a :27.4 first quarter, working clear of Sweet Rock (Corey Callahan) upon reaching the backstretch.   Following a well-rated :57.2 middle half, Art History accelerated clear of his eight foes in mid-stretch--but remained under pursuit from the first-over Ashley's Husband (Vinny Ginsburg) and K-Lees Shakenbake (Brett Miller), who vaulted off cover to chase via a :25.3 closing split. Art History had just enough to prevail, a neck better than K-Lees Shakenbake in the end. Ashley's Husband stayed on for third, while Sweet Rock tired a bit amid his chase, finishing fourth.   Steve Elliott trains 13-time winner Art History for Kenneth Klein and the Old Block Stables.   For Zeron, the win with Art History began a natural hat trick, and was one of his four on the night. The 26-year-old driver also teamed up with Mel Mara ($7.40, 1:49.1) in race 7, McArdles Lightning ($3.40, 1:50.4) in race 8, and Hope for Badlands ($3.80, 1:52.4) in race 11.   Total handle for the 12-race program was $2,926,995, marking an increase of $324,605 over the corresponding Saturday night program in 2015.   Live racing returns to the Meadowlands on Friday, March 25, with first post at 7:15 p.m. EDT. Over a quarter million dollars will await punters in the form of carryovers and guaranteed pools, as carryovers of $9210 and $148,441 await 20¢ Jackpot High 5 players in the fifth and final races respectively, and the evening's Pick 4 and Pick 5 wagers offer $105,000 in combined guaranteed pools.   by James Witherite, Meadowlands Media Relations

My Buddy Ninkster, a winner in his first start at Miami Valley Raceway four weeks ago, returned to the spotlight on Saturday (March 19) by winning the $20,000 Open Pace in 1:51.3. With the victory the four-year-old altered son of Dali becomes the third repeat winner of the weekly feature race during the current winter meet. Astreo's Love, who finished third this week, has won the Open I on four of the eleven occasions the $20,000 Open I has been presented since opening night on January 9. Mykindachip has also captured a pair of harness racing victories; while the other winners have been Talk Strategy, Fancy Creek Elusiv and Ice Scraper. Driver Kayne Kauffman gave My Buddy Ninkster a textbook drive in his most recent success, sitting chilly behind notorious frontrunner Turbo Mach through fractions of :27.4, :55.4 and 1:23.3 before angling out at the head of the stretch to pass the leader and then hold off Nitro (Chris Page) and Astreo's Love (LeWayne Miller). John and Mary Krasnican own the winner, who now has $133,825 in career bounty ($36,000 of it already this season). It was the 16th win of the current meet for trainer Chris Short. A $15,000 Open II pace was captured by Sports Sinner (John DeLong) in 1:51.2, a tick faster than the Open I. Steve Perkins owns and trains the five-year-old son of Western Ideal, who now has three wins in 2016 but this the first against open competition. King Otra (Randy Tharps) was a lapped-on second place finisher with E R Rudy (LeWayne Miller), who cut the quick early fractions in this mile, fading to third in the lane. Sports Sinner now sports 18 lifetime wins and bounty of $123,366. Favorites prevailed in a pair of divisions of the George Williams Memorial late-closing series for non-winners of four pari-mutuel races or $30,000 lifetime. Startin Something (John DeLong) topped Joel's Legacy (Josh Sutton) and Artistic Blue (Ken Holliday) in the first split, clocked in 1:52.4. Prohibitive favorite Undertaker (LeWayne Miller) dominated American Paradise (Chris Page) and Goodtime Matt (Trace Tetrick) in the second section, returning a meet-low $2.10 payoff for win. The top nine money-winners in the series will line up for a $20,000 championship race next Saturday (March 26). Kayne Kauffman had a handful of wins on the program, two days after returning from several days of rest and relaxation on a New Orleans vacation. His triumphs, in addition to the open with My Buddy Ninkster, came behind Kiasma in a $10,000 claimer, Tyber Tyke in a high condition pace, Cosmicpedia in a $20,000 claimer and Fancy Creek Elusiv in the top condition pace. In addition to Startin Something and Sports Sinner, John DeLong also guided Franzo and Electric Lad to the winner's circle, giving the 27-year-old reinsman a grand slam. Gregg Keidel  

Odds-on choice Rockeyed Optimist rolled to the front and never looked back en route to his third consecutive win in Saturday (March 12) night's $25,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadowlands, and handle exceeded $3 million for the 12th time in the last 13 harness racing cards at the North Jersey harness track.   In the featured $25,000 Open Handicap Pace, Rockeyed Optimist ($3.60) sprinted off from his five rivals after using the first three-eighths of the mile to work clear, earning his third consecutive win and second at the Open level. Tim Tetrick spotted the 5-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding second-over on the first turn, tracking Bettor's Edge (Joe Bongiorno) through a :27.1 quarter before losing cover and subsequently working clear on the backstretch. Once assuming the lead, Rockeyed Optimist faced no pressure, edging clear off the far turn and powering home in 1:49, using a :26 last quarter burst to evade his foes. Rockeyed Optimist ultimately prevailed by two lengths over Bettor's Edge, while Sunfire Blue Chip (John Campbell) stayed on for third from his stalking trip.   Steve Elliott trains the 18-time winner for the partnership of Perretti, Berkner, the A & B Stable, and Battaglia. For Elliott, it was a sweep of the evening's featured events, as another trainee of his--Art History ($8.20)--captured the night's sub-featured $16,000 upper-level conditioned pace earlier in the program. The 5-year-old Western Ideal gelding sustained a first-over push through the far turn, overtaking 2014 Little Brown Jug winner Limelight Beach in mid-stretch and subsequently staving off a late rally from K-Lees Shakenbake. Scott Zeron drove 12-time winner Art History to his 1:50 triumph.   Anthony Napolitano led all drivers with a grand slam, teaming up with Honey I'm Home ($2.80, 1:51.4), Hoboken Hanover ($7.40, 1:52.2), Last Dragon ($18.00, 1:50.2), and Major War ($4.60, 1:50.3). Tetrick and Bongiorno drove three winners apiece on the 13-race card.   Total betting turnover exceeded $3 million for the 12th time in the last 13 cards at The Meadowlands, with punters wagering $3,088,696 on the Saturday program--$423,919 more than the corresponding Saturday card in 2015.   Racing returns to The Meadowlands on Friday (March 18) evening, with post time at 7:15 p.m. EDT, $105,000 in guaranteed Pick 4 and Pick 5 pools, and a last-race 20¢ Jackpot High 5 carryover of $135,800.   by James Witherite, Meadowlands Media Relations

Wanda Bayama turned in a career best effort to the win the $20,000 second leg of the HPIBET.com Friday night at Woodbine Racetrack. A big field of 11 harness racing four-year-old pacing mares squared off Friday, but the clear horse to beat was Rick Zeron trainee Our Hot Majorette. The Zeron trainee captured one of two first leg divisions and with Much Adoo, the other first leg winner, skipping leg two, Friday's second leg looked like Our Hot Majorette's for the taking. Aniston Seelster flashed early speed to grab command, but Zeron pushed the 3/5 favourite off the wings to get away second. After an opening-quarter of :27, Zeron circled around Aniston Seelster to put Our Hot Majorette on top. The public's choice put up solid middle-fractions of :56 and 1:24.2. Meanwhile, Sylvain Filion sent Wanda Bayama first up from fifth around the final turn and pulled to within a couple lengths of the leader turning for home. In the stretch, Our Hot Majorette was all out trying to hold off her rival, but Wanda Bayama showed plenty of grit and surged by to win in 1:51.4. Yes You Can, who paced along third the for the majority of the mile, finished up strong to take second away from the favourite, while Aniston Seelster finished fourth. A daughter of Western Ideal, Wanda Bayama is trained by Stephane Larocque for owners Bayama Farms Inc. The four-year-old old finished second in a round one division last week. Friday's victory gives Wanda Bayama her first win in two starts this year and eight career victories overall. The Larocque trainee increased her earnings to over $87,000 with the win. A $2 win ticket on Wanda Bayama returned $6.50. In order to be eligible to the HPIBET.com, the four-year-old pacing mares had to be non-winners of $100,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2015. The $54,400 final of the HPIBET.com will take place next Saturday, March 19. Mark McKelvie

There are quite a few new stallions with their first crops gracing the harness racing two year old ranks in New Zealand this season and one of those is the son of Western Ideal in Big Jim 1:49.2 ($1,541,924). Several of the Big Jims having been showing up at trials lately with Jimmie 1:56.3 and Terracotta 1:59.1 both looking very promising types who won't be long winning races and at todays trials at Rangiora another son of Big Jim really took the eye with an impressive qualifying performance that stamped him as a well above average juvenile. Named Gotta Go Ya Hu, the two year old gelding is trained at Yaldhurst by Steve Dolan and was only having his second run away from home today when he comprehensively beat a couple of the All Stars barn runners who have both been performing well at workouts and trials. Away well from barrier two for Dexter Dunn, Gotta Go Ya Hu settled into the trail after 200 metres behind El Gran Senor and Ross Houghton who kept the tempo fairly solid in front. When the All Star runner Vincent with Mark Purdon in the bike moved up at the 400 metres mark, Dexter quickly had Gotta Go Ya Hu out and running and he proved too strong in the run home, comfortably holding his more experienced rival at bay. Gotta Go Ya Hu cut out the 2000 metres in 2:30.4, a mile rate of 2:00.9 with closing sectionals of 57.2 and 28.4 and the manner in which he did it suggested there was plenty left in the tank. Gotta Go Ya Hu is a lovely type in the flesh and comes from a strong maternal family that has produced plenty of age group winners in the past. His dam Hu Hu is a Christian Cullen daughter of the smart racemare Perfect Paua ($122,944) who left six winners including the talented Min Min Lights 1:56 ($177,380) Hu Hu's first two foals are both winners with the smart Jeremes Jet filly Hu R U 1:57.1 having won seven from ten to date in Australia and New Zealand the better of the pair. Steve Dolan is no stranger to having a top class youngster in his barn so all the ingredients seem to be there for Gotta Go Ya Hu to make a big impact when he lines up at the races in the not to distant future. Harnesslink Media

Lucan Hanover made it two-in-row in the $30,000 Preferred pace on a balmy Monday, Feb. 29, on the Leap Year edition of Dover Downs harness racing. Unlike last week when Lucan Hanover enjoyed a 2-hole trip to score a nose victory, this week after overtaking Mustang Art with Sean Bier after a :26 opening quarter, Corey Callahan took over guiding Lucan Hanover, a six-year-old Western Ideal-Lauren Order gelding, the rest of the way in front and then pulling away with a: 27.1 final panel to a decisive 1:49 conquest over some of the sport's top-class pacers now racing. Tony Morgan and Doctor Butch closed along the passing lane to nip Mustang Art for second. The win was the 20th of his career for the $825,626 lifetime winner. Blazing Bobby Sox, owned by Art Stafford and trainer-driver Art Stafford Jr., won for the fourth time this year notching a career fastest 1:50.2 triumph in a $15,500 4&5-Year-Old Winners-Over Male pace. Sectionline Rock (Tim Tetrick) closed well to pick up second money. Apollo Seelster (Yannick Gingras) was the show finisher. It was the 12 lifetime win for Blazing Bobby Sox, a The Panderosa-Liamatters five-year-old gelding. Robert Cooper Stables' Go Collect N was an impressive 1:51.2 winner in another pace for young horses winning the $13,500 event for his third win in five races since arriving from New Zealand. Corey Callahan steered the winner for trainer Dylan Davis. Since arriving in North America, the Gotta Go Collect-No Parking N gelding has in addition to three wins, three seconds in his seven starts. Swappertunity (Jim Morand) finished second for the second straight time. Rednickyachtclub (Allan Davis) was third. In another $13,500 division Yannick Gingras drove JT to a 1:52.2 score for trainer Ron Burke and owners Weaver Brucsemi and Burke Racing Stable. An altered son of Badlands Hanover-Snowhite Beach, it was his second straight win in five races. Ima Rebel (Morgan) closed swiftly along the passing lane for second. Roll Big (Callahan) was the third finisher. Local favorite Just A Jolt made it to the winner's circle for the first time in 2016 in his seventh start as Tim Tetrick got the Village Jolt-Just Wait Kate gelding away quickly and never looked back for a 1:50.3 victory to win a $12,500 Mile pace. Four Staces (Callahan) finished second with Papa Ray (Allan Davis) going a tough trip for third. Meet leading driver Corey Callahan and leading trainer Dylan Davis had three wins each, Tim Tetrick, Art Stafford Jr. and trainer Eric Ell had two wins apiece. FASHION SHOWDOWN VERSUS SEVEN IN $20,000 MARES OPEN Fashion Showdown, an impressive 1:51.1 winner in last week’s $20,000 Mares Open Handicap faces seven rivals on Tuesday, March 1 at Dover Downs. Post time is 4:30 p m. Corey Callahan will drive Chris White’s Fashion Showdown, a winner of three Opens already in 2016. Among her opponents, Jeff Clark’s Springforth, with George Dennis driving, has been right there in recent starts with a win, three seconds and a third in her last six starts. Another competitor in top form is Lou Catana and Vince Bradley’s Matinee Dragon handled by Jonathan Roberts. Not to be overlooked are Sage N, a two-time winner in her last three races, and Tim Tetrick piloting from the outside for C.V Iannazzo, JFE Enterprises and Triple D Stables, Bob Bailey’s sharp Duneside Chella with Tony Morgan, John McGill’s hard-hitting No Respect, and from the rail, B Stern and Vic Kirby stepping up in class for owners Steve Moss, Hal and Helene Solomon and trainer Leigh Raymer. A $15,500, a $15,000, a $14,000 and $12,000 distaff paces for 4&5-year-olds, top a strong undercard. Dover Downs races Monday through Thursday starting at 4:30 p.m. No Live racing on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.  Watch the races and enjoy dining in the Winners Circle Restaurant. Call 302-674-4600 for reservations. Simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred racing is available daily from 12 Noon until 12 Midnight at Dover Downs where there is no charge for parking and admission. Reservations are suggested for the Winner’s Circle Restaurant and for those planning to stay at the 4-star Dover Downs Hotel. Call 302-674-4600. Marv Bachrad

He is the 12th foal out of a 100 percent producer, but his harness racing owner and conditioner feel that Armbro Nectarine might very well have saved her best genetic contribution for last when it comes to 2015 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes champion Ideal Jimmy. “Every foal she had was a winner,” said D R Van Witzenburg, the 3-year-old gelding’s owner/breeder. “They all could pace and this one is an absolute runt. He’s the smallest foal from her, but he has the heart. You can’t breed or train that into them. He is all desire and he just wants to win.” The son of Western Ideal is a full sibling to Enhance The Night ($561,117), Ideal Nectarine ($607,445), Ideal Danny ($424,998), Ideal Ike ($129,143), Ideal Ginny ($135,809) and Ideal Helen ($194,060). He is also a half-brother to Tommy’s Luck (Camluck, $200,125). Conditioned by Erv Miller, who also trained his older sisters Ideal Nectarine, Ideal Ginny and Ideal Helen, Ideal Jimmy demonstrated he was just as talented as the rest of the family by capturing his debut in a $30,000 Pennsylvania All-Stars contest at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on July 3. In his next two events, which were in Pennsylvania Sire Stakes company, the gelding came home fourth, before the hitting the winner’s circle in a $23,990 division of the Arden Downs on Aug. 1 at The Meadows and in a $28,942 division of the Tompkins-Geers at Tioga Downs on Aug. 9. Ideal Jimmy was second at Harrah’s Philadelphia in PASS company on Aug. 20 and had his picture taken in a $71,114 Sire Stake at The Meadows on Sept. 1. That race proved to be the perfect prep for the $350,000 final which the gelding annexed very impressively on Sept. 11. After a trip where regular pilot Marcus Miller encountered all kinds of traffic, Ideal Jimmy looked to have no chance at the top of the lane, but with a very powerful turn of foot he reeled in world champion Spider Man Hanover with the greatest of ease. “He’s so little that when he won that $71,000 Sire Stake at the Meadows I thought he had broke,” Van Witzenburg said. “We took the hood on and off him throughout the season and there were times we did that and that was the result. I thought since I couldn’t see him coming around the last turn he was far back, but then all of a sudden I saw him spurt out to the lead and he just kept going. I thought to myself, ‘That little horse just went and won himself a nice race.’” Miller had his doubts about how Ideal Jimmy would perform while he was training down. “He really does not have much size to him at all,” he said. “He just looked so different from the rest of them, as this mare always had foals with some scope and range. When we got him down to about 2:01 though we knew we had one on our hands with ability. He’s tiny but he has a long, gliding, beautiful stride to him and he has so much heart. He’s so willing and you can do anything with him. He is a very good racehorse.” Ideal Jimmy finished his freshman campaign with a second in a $35,000 division of the Liberty Bell at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Sept. 24 and a third in a $36,400 division of the Keystone Classic at The Meadows on Oct. 2. He is currently back in training and is being aimed toward another season in Pennsylvania. “We did not really know what to think of him at the beginning of the year, so we really did not stake him to hardly anything,” Miller said. “That’s why we just stopped on him for the rest of the year and gave him some time to grow. He’s training great right now and although he has not grown taller, he has gotten stouter. We are looking forward to racing him this year and seeing how well he does.” Witzenburg has been in the business for five decades and considers himself very fortunate with the horses he has owned. “The first horse I bought in on, Real Speed, won more than $400,000 and we got to travel all over the country with him,” he said. “The next horse I got was Cumberland and he wasn’t a stakes horse, but I felt like a champion just watching him win at the fairs. After those two I was hooked. “I was so lucky to get this mare (Armbro Nectarine). In fact, when I went to pick her up at Hanover Shoe Farm I couldn’t take her because she started foaling right when we were getting ready to load her in the truck. They allowed me to just board her there. “Jimmy has already won (nearly) $300,000 and we think he has more to show us. There’s not a lot of people that have been as lucky as I have.” Despite the goal being to defend his Sire Stakes crown, Miller does not rule out other stakes appearances for Ideal Jimmy. “Pennsylvania is definitely our focus,” he said. “But I would not rule out supplementing him to a race like the Breeders Crown if the horse is doing well and does all season. He will have to earn it, but I think he’s capable of doing that. He is better than his older sisters, not that they were not talented, but he has such a terrific attitude and always has. That is what sets him apart from the rest of the family. He may be small, but that heart makes up for his lack of size.” by Kimberly French, USTA Web Newsroom Senior Correspondent

Charlottetown, PE - He is the man on the move. Corey MacPherson has been winning multiple races since his return to the track in November and takes over the top spot in the driver standings at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park with 13 victories. The legendary harness racing oval has 13 races on Saturday. Post time is 12:30pm. "I'm feeling really good right now and my confidence is up because I'm driving better horses too," said MacPherson. "It really comes down to the horses but I'm driving with a bit more patience and I try to put each horse in a position to win." One of those horses is Idealic Life. The 12 year-old son of Western Ideal is trained by Trevor Hicken and goes for his seventh straight score Saturday in race 12. MacPherson said he's a pleasure to drive. "You can hold him with two fingers in the post parade but once you turn him behind the gate he's like a race car. He likes the front but he can come off a helmet and once I move him he delivers such a burst of speed. He's a nice horse." Best Risque goes after her fifth in a row on the open mares handicapped for MacPherson and trainer Brian Ladner. "I got into a little trouble with her last week and had to go three high to the opening quarter but she proved how tough she is. That was a big win." The roster also includes A Fiesty X Ample off the rail for driver Stephen Quinn and conditioner Nickolas Oakes. Quinn is third in the standings with 4 winners in the first month of 2016 three behind Marc Campbell who sits in second with seven. Campbell only needs one more trip to victory lane to notch 1,500 in his career. A familiar name returns to Charlottetown. Smokin Bear, who appeared in the 2013 Gold Cup & Saucer, is entered to compete in race 10 for driver Mike McGuigan, trainer Kenneth Wilkie and owner Jamie Whelan. Customers still have a chance to purchase tickets on a Gold Cup & Saucer and Governor's Plate prize package in the Classy Lane fundraiser. Tickets are $10 dollars and are available at the Rewards Club in Charlottetown and Summerside. The last chance to buy tickets will be January 30th. The harness racing fan choice awards ballot will be in the race program on Saturday. Fans will have an opportunity to select their favorites and be entered for a chance to win a Red Shores prize package. For entries, race programs or live broadcast go to www.redshores.ca Lee Drake

One of the oldest lines used by harness racing breeding students worldwide up till the last few years was never write off a stallion's chances even if it is dead. It was not uncommon prior to the widespread use of frozen semen for a young stallions progeny to fire up on the track as soon the stallion died in the early stages of their siring career. These days breeders have the luxury of having access to the frozen semen of a number of the stallions that die prematurely and the biggest example in the last few years has been Rocknroll Hanover 1:48.6 ($2,754,038) The son of Western Ideal was a star on the track and took that straight to the siring barn where he was an instant success. Just when he was establishing himself as an elite sire, he ruptured his stomach at age eleven and had to be euthanized in March 2013, his premature death sending a shock through the breeding business worldwide. Fortunately, he had plenty of his frozen semen stored and he has continued to produce foals in the years after his death. The success of Rocknroll Hanover's crop of two year olds in Australia last season where he was a close third behind Bettor's Delight on the sires list was a timely reminder of his quality in the siring barn. This year Rocknroll Hanover has seventeen yearlings in the two major sales in New Zealand with his ten offerings at Karaka all having plenty to recommend them on the pedigree page Lot 113 at the Australasian Classic Yearling sale on February 22nd at Karaka is typical of the quality that is being offered. A colt named King Of Swing, he is the first foal of the former top Artsplace three year old filly in Twist And Twirl 1:56.8 ($283,258) who won both the Great Northern Oaks and the New Zealand Sires Stakes Three Year Old final as well as running second in both the New Zealand Oaks and the Australasian Breeders Crown Three Year Old Fillies Final. The second dam Giveitawhirlgirl 2:00.4 has been doing a great job at stud having already produced Feels Like Magic 1:52.2 ($217,783) and Bettor Give It 1:57.4 ($138,061) as well as Twist And Twirl while the third dam is the former top class filly Impish 1:54.9 (6 wins) who is now the dam of The Fascinator 1:53.9 ($155,162) and the grand-dam of smart West Australian mare Opulent 1:54.9 ($249,085) The fourth dam is the former star New Zealand mare in Smarty Pants (10 wins) so the maternal family has strength going back generations while still churning out star performers today. King Of Swing looks to have all the bases covered for those looking for a Rocknroll Hanover yearling. To view the catalogue for the Australasian Classic Yearling sale click here. Harnesslink Media

Charlottetown, PE - Idealic Life has been established as the morning line favorite in the Saturday afternoon top class at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. The race is in honour of Mr Salming, a former Maritime bred record holder on a half mile racetrack when he scorched Yonkers Raceway in 1:52 flat. Post time for the 14 dash card is 12:30pm. Idealic Life, who is riding a four win race streak, is trained by Trevor Hicken and will be driven by Corey MacPherson. This trainer-driver combination is one of the hottest on the Island. The 12 year-old son of Western Ideal is coming off a 1:56.3 score and leaves from post 6 in race 13. The other triactor candidates include DBS Rosco (Kenny Arsenault) who has hit the board in his last six starts for owners Wendell and Robbie Shaw of Summerside and Derek Folland, Kensington while Putmans Power (Walter Cheverie) has shot in the top three from post 5. The talented field also includes The Big Bite (Shane Bernard), Painted Desert (Mark Bradley) and Likely To Win (Ken Murphy). The program will also pay tribute to Mr Domi, the first Maritime bred sub 1:50 performer who stopped the clock in 1:49.4 over Woodbine Racetrack. Breeder Eldred Nicholson will be trackside with the cooler presentation as Tempo Seelster (Vince Poulton) and Smiley Bayama (Ron Gass) go after the top prize. The power packed line up has Rash B Havior (Walter Cheverie), Eagle Jolt (Marc Campbell), Fightmaster (Michael McGuigan) and My Lucky Killean (Ken Murphy). Driver Marc Campbell is only five victories away from career win 1,500. Campbell is booked on eight horses Saturday. The Island harness racing community is coming together to launch a fundraiser for the Classy Lane training center in Ontario after a tragic fire on Monday night. Customers will have a chance to purchase tickets on a Gold Cup & Saucer and Governor's Plate prize package. Tickets are $10 dollars and will be available at the Rewards Club in Charlottetown and Summerside. For entries, race programs or live broadcast go to www.redshores.ca By Lee Drake

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - The driving title at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park will be tight going into the final harness racing card of the calendar year on New Year's Eve. Jason Hughes went into Saturday afternoon's card with a one-race advantage over Marc Campbell and scored wins with Stayoutofmyaffair and Timely Finesse but then Campbell came back swinging in the next race. He scored a win with Casimir Luciano in race 8, then came back to the winner's circle in race 11 with Rash B Havior in a blistering 1:57.1 victory over the off track, before finishing off his driving triple with Eagle Jolt in 1:58.4. Hughes and Campbell tied for the dash title in 2014 and will go into Thursday evening's card tied at 111 wins each. Idealic Life remained perfect off the claim in the Saturday afternoon top class. The 11-year-old son of Western Ideal now has three victories since being claimed by owners Perry, Luke and Robin Burke and Kent Livingston. Corey MacPherson engineered the winning trip in 1:58.1 behind the Trevor Hicken trainee, with Lucky Encounter (Walter Cheverie) finishing second and Likely To Win (Ron Matheson) third. MacPherson had a total of five wins on the 15-dash card including wins with Spectacular Future, Hurricane Hill, and Cloudy Bay. The 26-year-old driver captured his other victory in the $2,350 Open Mares Pace in 2:01 with Best Risque for co-owner and trainer Brian Ladner and co-owners Lillian and Kevin Ladner, all of Charlottetown. Whitesand Artist (Gary Chappell) came up large to finish second while Outrageous Spirit (Gordie Hennessey) got the show prize. Chappell won the Open Trot class with Holy Molie Maggie in an eight-length romp in 2:02.1 over Pleasure Girls (Ron Gass) and Caliban Hanover (Cheverie). Holy Molie Maggie is owned and trained by Jeff Holmes of Orwell. It was one of three wins on the program for Chappell. By Nicholas Oakes for Red Shores

TORONTO, December 26 - The 2015 harness racing season wrapped up Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack with the annual Boxing Day matinee card. The 221st and final racing day was action-packed with series finals, milestones and meet titles all being handed out. The feature race of the day was the $34,600 Valedictory Series final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Mohawk Warrior, who was aiming for a series sweep, led a trio of starters sent out by trainer Richard Moreau in the eight-horse contest. Rockinonby, Moreau's newest recruit, sprinted off the gate to the front and posted a sizzling opening-quarter of :25.2. Mohawk Warrior and Cajon Lightning lined up in behind their stablemate to situate the Moreau trainees in the top-three spots entering the backstretch. Mohawk Warrior made a backstretch move to take the lead at the half in :53.3, but Cajon Lightning quickly overtook his stablemate and carried the lead into the final turn. Shades Of Bay, who was pacing fifth, was angled out in the final turn by driver Phil Hudon and was first-up in fourth. After a three-quarter time of 1:22, Cajon Lightning led the field into the lane, while Shades Of Bay grinded towards the leader on the outside and Mohawk Warrior looked for room up the rail. Shades Of Bay had the most to offer in the lane and powered by the leader in deep stretch to score a 5/1 upset by a length in 1:50.3. The Moreau trainees rounded out the top-three, as Cajon Lightning held on for second ahead of Mohawk Warrior. A son of Art Major, Shades Of Bay came into the Valedictory final off a victory Monday night in an overnight event. The Sean Mehlenbacher trainee finished third in the opening leg of the series on December 12. Shades Of Bay now has three wins in four starts since being purchased by Timothy Kim of Toronto in November. The sophomore pacing colt was winless in three starts as a rookie, but now has four wins in 11 starts this season for earnings of over $51,000. The clocking of 1:50.3 established a new Valedictory Series record, breaking Lucky Terror's mark of 1:51 set in 2010. Shades Of Bay paid $13.60 to win. Shades Of Bay In the Niagara Series final, Wanda Bayama completed the series sweep with a dominating victory in the $33,400 contest. A field of ten three-year-old pacing fillies lined up, but all eyes were on Wanda Bayama, the 1/5 favourite. The public's choice paced out comfortably into second, but driver Sylvain Filion quickly right-lined and circled the filly to the lead in the second-quarter. After posting fractions of :56 and 1:25.1, Wanda Bayama waved goodbye to her rivals and opened up more than nine-lengths of separation in the stretch. The Stephane Larocque trainee cruised home under wraps to win by 7¼ lengths in 1:53. Pinky Tuscadero finished second, while Amazing Control was third. A daughter of Western Ideal, Wanda Bayama swept the Niagara Series with a trio of impressive victories. Owned by Bayama Farms Inc, the sophomore pacing filly now has seven wins and over $72,000 earned this season. Wanda Bayama paid $2.70 to win. Wanda Bayama In order to be eligible to the Valedictory and Niagara Series, the three-year-old pacers had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2015. Also on Saturday's card, Sylvain Filion and Richard Moreau completed their impressive seasons by capturing the driving and training titles for the 2015 season. Filion led all drivers on the WEG circuit in 2015 with 320 victories, 101 more wins than Doug McNair in second-place. He capped off his season with a three win performance Saturday afternoon. Richard Moreau was also a run-away winner in the trainer category, as he led all conditioners with 149 victories in 2015. Filion and Moreau will be recognized for capturing the WEG driving and training titles on Saturday, January 4. The busy Saturday also included milestone victories for a pair of veteran trainers. Ben Baillargeon celebrated his 2,000th career training victory Saturday, while Dustin Jones recorded his 1,000th training victory. Trotter Musical Rhythm went gate-to-wire in the sixth-race to record the milestone victory for Baillargeon. Baillargeon, 57, finished third this season in the WEG Trainer Standings with 73 victories. The veteran trainer has sent out the winners of over $1.8 million in 2015. Over the course of his career, Baillargeon's horses have won over $32 million. Four-year-old pacing mare Nat A Virgin captured the afternoon's eleventh-race to give Jones his 1,000th training victory. Jones, 54, has won 39 races and sent out the winners of over $1 million this season. His 39 victories is his highest win total since a 43 win season in 2007, while 2015 marks the fifth-time Jones has topped the $1 million mark in seasonal earnings. The Standardbreds will now take a short-break, but live racing resumes with the first card of 2016 next Saturday, January 2. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

TORONTO, December 18 - A week after a 6-1 harness racing victory, Wanda Bayama was back in the winner's circle Friday night at Woodbine Racetrack. The three-year-old Stephane Larocque trainee defeated nine rivals in the $18,000 second leg of the Niagara Series. Driven by Sylvain Filion, Wanda Bayama, the 6/5 favourite, got away seventh in the early stages and sat along the pylons until the midway point. Much Adoo, the 2-1 second choice, made a second-quarter brush from third to take command at the half in :57.1. Around the final turn, Wanda Bayama got into the outer flow and sat third-over at the three-quarter pole. In the stretch, Filion brought his filly to the far outside and she surged by Much Adoo in the final-eighth to win by 2½ lengths in 1:54. Much Adoo held on for second, while Amazing Control finished third just ahead of Pinky Tuscadero. A daughter of Western Ideal, Wanda Bayama now has back-to-back victories and six overall in 2015. The sophomore pacing filly increased her career earnings to over $55,000 for owners Bayama Farms Inc. Wanda Bayama paid $4.70 to win. Wanda Bayama In order to be eligible to the Niagara Series, the three-year-old fillies had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2015. Wanda Bayama will now look for the series sweep in the $33,400 series final on Boxing Day. The Niagara Series final will be joined by the Valedictory Series final on the matinee Boxing Day card. Post time December 26 is 1 p.m. Mark McKelvie

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