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The rise of Red Hot Tooth continues. The four-year-old harness racing mare stunned a field of older, more experienced rivals to take out last night’s Haras Des Trotteurs Australasian Trotting Championship at Tabcorp Park Melton. Trainer Kari Males has had confidence in Red Hot Tooth the whole way through, nominating the daughter of Yankee Paco-Karaka Tooth for a potential Pryde’s Easifeed Great Southern Star berth over summer. Last night, with regular driver Zac Phillips in the gig, Red Hot Tooth produced a faultless display from the standing start conditions to rate 2:01.0 for a comfortable 6.2m win over fellow mares Sky Petite (five-year-old) and Illawong Helios (six) in the $50,000 Group 1 over 2760m. The win was Phillips’ third Group 1 triumph in the last month. WATCH RED HOT TOOTH'S GROUP 1 WIN AT MELTON “It’s funny how it works. It takes a long time to get one and then I get three in a few weeks,” Phillips said. “She’s such a great trier. I was talking to Paul (Males) during the week and he said ‘if she trots to the front just go fast enough that they can’t go near you’. “The art of training is setting horses for races like this and Paul and Kari have done a great job with that over the years. No one works harder than them.” Red Hot Tooth booted well clear at the home bend and produced final splits of 28.8 and 28.4. She completed the marathon trip in 3mins 27.5secs. Race favourite On Thunder Road finished 10th, while two other horses well in commission that finished back in the field were Sunny Ruby (eighth) and Cruisin Around (11th). “I just can’t speak highly enough of her… she’s just a little superstar,” a clearly elated Kari Males said post-race. The win was Males’ 250th career victory. Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

A magical 35 minutes for Melton harness racing driver Zac Phillips also produced a mighty thrill for trainer Kari Males and owner Graham Bullock when Red Hot Tooth captured Group 1 glory at Tabcorp Park Melton tonight. Phillips first Group 1 triumph on Une Belle Allure was followed quickly by his second when he found the front mid-race and Red Hot Tooth put in a searing performance to win the $50,000 Lyn McPherson Memorial Breed For Speed Gold Series Final. “Unreal, words can’t describe how this feels right now,” Phillips said. “It’s a little bit surreal, I think I’m going to have to get back into the drivers' rooms and pinch myself. Massive thrill.” They are the high emotions that were shared by Males, who was full of pride for her Yankee Paco four-year-old mare. “She’s an absolute little superstar, I just love her,” Males said. “She’s very casual, she’s like a kids pony half the time, she just plods around half asleep, but when she gets on the track she just does the job.” Nica Macdonon initially held High Gait and Red Hot Tooth at bay, with High Gait directed into the chair while Phillips waited and then had a second crack at the lead when Charming Lavra loomed up on his outside at the bell. “It definitely surprised me the one (Nica Macdonon) holding up early,” Phillips said. “I knew it got out of the gate good, but when Ants came (on Charming Lavra) I was confident (Nica Macdonon) would be happy to sit on me once it had done that little bit of work early. “Once (Red Hot Tooth) found the front she was travelling so good, when Jason (Lee on Heavenly Sister) got up outside her she was just on the bit. She just felt like she was never going to get beat.” After a 58.8s first half she peeled off a 28.7 third quarter and in the final straight she looked a class above, winning by 1.6m to Heavenly Sister with Illawong Helios 10.2m back in third. “She’s just a great little trier,” Phillips said. “When she’s in front she’s hard to get past. “Paul and Kari have been massive support for my career and this horse is unreal. She means the world to me. She was my first winner at Menangle, my first Group winner and my second Group 1 winner. “She’s a different horse as a four-year-old. It was always a worry whether she’d improve from a three-year-old and take the next step, but I definitely think she’s proven this time in that she’s done that.” Michael Howard (HRV Media/Communications Co-Ordinator)

Lightly raced four year old Yankee Paco/Maybe Hall gelding Maybetothemax was a most impressive victor of the Bendigo Party Hire Trotters Mobile (1st Heat) for T1 & T2 class over 2150 metres at Lord’s Raceway Bendigo on Tuesday July 14. Trained at Kyabram by Graham Lyon who loves the squaregaiters, Maybetothemax coming off an excellent second to Im Stately in the Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Sires Series Final at Tabcorp Park Melton eleven days earlier and making his 21st race appearance, possied one/one from gate five with the well supported Pipe Me Home shadowing the poleline pacemaker Law Legend. The short priced favourite Gus An Maori (gate four) missed away hopelessly. Vacating the prime spot shortly after the start to race in the open, Nathan Jack was able to dictate the terms of the race to suit and Maybetothemax raced past the leader prior to the home turn under a tight hold. Although Lightning Calder (three wide last lap from last) tried hard on turning, Maybetothemax bounded clear halfway up the running to record a 7.6 metre victory over Lightning Calder, with rank outsider Illawong Sunny 1.8 metres away in third place. The mile rate  was 2-02.5 on the rain effected track Graham Lyon enjoyed plenty of success in the eighties with a horse by the name of Northsea Rover and at one stage had champion mare Claudys Princess under his care, winning the Two Year Old Vicbred Super Series Final. Heat two will be held at Ballarat this Saturday, with the $8505 Final at Tabcorp Park Melton on July 26. Echuca trainer/driver Steven Lindberg provided a shock result to the Dunlop & Pitson Earthmoving Pace for C2 class over 2150 metres, when speedy seven year old Christian Cullen/Time’s On My Side gelding Bon Jovi saluted the judge at $18.50. Crossing the long odds-on poleline favourite Padrisimo at the start from gate five,  Bon Jovi led all of the way and although headed by Mrs Devine in the shadows of the post after racing outside him, came again to gain the day by a head in 2-01.9.  Padrisimo was quite disappointing in finishing third after having the entire length of the sprint lane, going down by 1.6 metres.  It was Bon Jovi’s first victory since November 2013. Hopetoun Park father and son – Ross and Greg Sugars snared the Santons Of Bendigo Claiming Pace over 1650 metres with P B Bullville/Pleasant Speed seven year old gelding Rumsron in a rate of 1-57.6 in driving rain, much to the delight of Bacchus Marsh part-owner Denis Grieve. Spearing away from gate five, Rumsron led throughout to account for Our Mels Dream (three wide last lap) and Our Horizon which faced the breeze from outside the front line. Long Forest duo Andy & Kate Gath appeared set on paper to have a great night, but only snared only one winner – smart Majestic Son/Starcus Me filly Naked Majesty in the Aldebaran Park Trotters Mobile for T0 & T1 class over 2150 metres. Beginning smoothly from the extreme draw to lob three back in the moving lane, Kate wasted no time in sending the filly forward to park outside Miss Cosmos. Travelling sweetly, Naked Majesty put pay to her rivals on turning to record a 3.1 metre margin on the wire over Mont Morley (three wide home turn after trailing the leader), with Miss Cosmos holding down third. Seymour’s Billy Morgan combined with Gavin Lang to land the Yorkshire Park Standardbreds Pace for C0 class over 2150 metres with four year old Pay Me Christian/Arma Class gelding Arma Augustus. Given a sweet passage one/one from gate three, Arma Augustus after being eased three wide on the final bend, prevailed in the last bound to nose out the leader Nikita Maguire in 2-00.5, with Three Mugs In (one/two) running his usual honest race to finish third after making the home turn four wide. Kiwi bred Bettor’s Delight/Millwood Touche filly Millwood Brandy at start number eleven, snared the Bush’s Produce 3-Y-0 Pace over 2150 metres for Melton duo Maree and John Caldow, leading all of the way from the pole to just last by a nose from Shakahari along the sprint lane from three back the markers which would have given Bill Morgan a double. Abetta Tiny Dancer was 2.5 metres away in third place after racing uncovered from the bell. The mile rate was 2-00.4.   Woorinen (Swan Hill) trainer Joe Costa has enjoyed a most fruitful season with his small but select team, taking out the Amadee Park Vineyard Pace for C3 & C4 class over 1650 metres with ultra-consistent 3-Y-0 Million Dollar Cam/What About Now gelding Riley James in a slick 1-57.2. Driven by Ararat freelance Michael Bellman who hardly ever misses a meeting throughout the state, Riley James led throughout from the pole to score by 1.7 metres in advance of Givemeaspell which trailed and a death-seating Time Capsule. On a night when leading was the place to be, Heathcote trainer Jason Tyack made a welcome return to the winners list when Courage Under Fire/Realy Dry 5-Y-0 gelding Realy Under Fire with Scott Rains in the sulky, led throughout from gate four to blitz his rivals in the Samios Plumbing Supplies Pace for C1 class over 1650 metres, scoring by 6.6 metres in 1-58.9 metres from the favourite Our Danger Mouse which raced outside him for the final circuit. Olivia Rockstar (four wide home turn from last) was 6.2 metres away in third place. Len Baker

Harness racing trainer Doug McIntosh, developer of Hambletonian winner Yankee Paco and countless other stakes stars, is retiring from training to concentrate his time on his McIntosh Pro Line, his business which markets all-natural products for horses, pets, and people. "We started this business in the mid-1990s and it's been rewarding," said McIntosh. "My father was always involved in producing horse supplements dating back to the 1950s, so it was natural for me to pursue this interest. I enjoy working with clients who have all breeds of horses. " The highly-respected trainer never hesitates to credit his father Jack for schooling him and his brother Bob in the fundamentals of horsemanship. The horses Doug currently has in training will be turned over to his brother Bob to train. He thanked his longtime patron and partner Dr. Tom Ivey for his steadfast support over many years. McIntosh was one of the first horsemen to recognize the importance of communication with owners and the media. He started a Doug McIntosh Stables newsletter decades ago that reached more than 400 readers. In the late 1980s, he worked with internet guru Jim Gillies to create stable web site for this stable. "We had a domain name for the Doug McIntosh Stables three years before Standardbred Canada had a domain name," notes McIntosh. In addition to Yankee Paco, McIntosh trained such Grand Circuit stakes winners as Image ofa Clear Day (Breeders Crown winner), Molly Can Doit, Jodys Cam, Sand Chaser, Desert Ivey, and Strong Tea. Earlier in his career, he had the standout pacer Stapleton Place, a winner of $328,544 in the 1970s, in partnership with his childhood friend Fred Drouillard. McIntosh also trained Honest Chance, one of the pioneer sub-1:55 pacers when he took his 1:54.1 mark in 1976. It is, of course, Yankee Paco that gave McIntosh his greatest thrill when he overcame a parked out trip to win the 2000 Hambletonian for owner Dr. Tom Ivey and Harry Ivey. The son of Balanced Image earned $1,361,421 that season while earning honors as the champion 3-year-old trotter. Younger brother Bob McIntosh worked for Doug when beginning his career and Doug says, "I'm very proud of all the success that my brother has achieved." McIntosh has also been active in many industry groups, including serving as a director of Standardbred Canada and a Vice-President of the Ontario Harness Horsemen's Association. Also served on the board of directors at Windsor Raceway under owner Tom Joy. McIntosh says he is saddened by the Ontario Liberal government's decision to end the slots at tracks program. He pointed out that horse racing in Ontario fed many families and provided thousands of jobs. "I'm proud of where I came from, and proud of what I have accomplished," says McIntosh. "I still follow the big races on TV. I won't miss a single stakes race. But I also have a son who is in high school and I've supported his interests in hockey, soccer, and baseball. McIntosh says, "I want to thank all my connections over the years. It is one large fraternity of the greatest people in the world."        

 Russell Williams, vice-president of the famous nursery Hanover Shoe Farms and a director on the boards of many of harness racing's top organizations, and Charles Keller III, who carried on the tradition of his father's famous Yankeeland Farm and also continues to serve the sport on many of its top organizations' boards, have been announced as the finalists for the 2014 Stan Bergstein-Proximity Award, it has been announced by the United States Harness Writers Association (USHWA). After the various chapters of USHWA submitted nominations for the award, the highest honor USHWA bestows based on voting only by its members and given for outstanding achievement in/service to the sport, the nominees were sent to the Association's directors, who voted to winnow down the candidates to the top two. Williams and Keller will now be voted on by the entirety of USHWA during the annual Dan Patch Awards balloting honoring the year's stars, both equine and human; that balloting will be conducted in early December. Williams, the grandson of Hanover's founder Lawrence Sheppard, plays a major part in the operation of the world's leading Standardbred-producing farm, where he keeps his own small but select band of broodmares (he is the breeder of the million-dollar-winning top three-year-old colt Nuncio). He is also vice chairman of the U.S. Trotting Association, the sport's supervisory organization, and a trustee of the American Horse Council and the Harness Racing Museum. Williams is also a noted "equine philanthropist," financing the possibility of many Standardbreds being able to live out their lives with dignity, including retired Hanover broodmares. Keller, the son of noted Yankees baseball player "King Kong" Keller, took over operation of Yankeeland Farms, which his father established, in 1990 until the farm's closing in 2006. The farm bred two Hambletonian winners, Muscles Yankee (1998) and Yankee Paco (2000), and it also bred Yankee Blondie, the dam of 2009 winner Muscle Hill, along with countless other divisional champions. It has produced the outstanding sires Yankee Glide and Yankee Cruiser, and has been the cradle of four Breeders Crown winners Keller is the chairman of the executive committee of the Hambletonian Society, a trustee of the Harness Racing Museum, and a former director of the U. S. Trotting Association. The Bergstein/Proximity winner, along with the awards for the best of 2014, will be given at USHWA's annual Dan Patch Awards dinner on Sunday, February 22, 2015, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Orlando at SeaWorld; more details, including on accommodations, will be forthcoming soon. USHWA

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 2 - Seven three-year-old trotters were entered Tuesday morning for the $682,000 Canadian Trotting Classic on Saturday, September 13. With only seven horses entered, eliminations are not required for this year's edition of the 'Trotting Classic.' Headlining the group of seven is the Jimmy Takter trained duo of Father Patrick and Trixton. Father Patrick is coming into the Canadian Trotting Classic off a victory last Friday night in the $340,000 Zweig Memorial at Vernon Downs. A son of Cantab Hall - Gala Dream, Father Patrick has won 17 of his 20 career starts, including capturing last year's William Wellwood Memorial at Mohawk in a Track and Canadian record time of 1:53.4. Father Patrick was named last year's Two-year-old Trotting Colt of the Year on both sides of the border and has earned $1,452,396 in his career. The other half of the Takter duo, Trixton, most recently won the $218,076 Simcoe Stakes last Saturday night at Mohawk. A son of Muscle Hill - Emilie Cas El, Trixton won this year's $1 million Hambletonian at the Meadowlands on August 2. He also found success earlier this season at Mohawk when he won the $272,100 Goodtimes Stakes on June 14 in a Track and Canadian record clocking of 1:51.3. Trixton has 12 victories in 18 career starts for earnings of more than $960,000. Also joining the Takter duo in the rich final is Ontario Sires Stakes star Harper Blue Chip. Trained by Mark Steacy, Harper Blue Chip won this year's Canadian Breeders Championship and finished third in the Hambletonian. A son of Canadian Trotting Classic winner Majestic Son, Harper Blue Chip has visited the winner's circle eight times in his career for earnings of more than $547,000. The other four horses in this year's Canadian Trotting Classic field are Damfoolrmillionair, E L Titan, Il Sogno Dream and Muscle Matters. Established in 1976, the Canadian Trotting Classic has been won by many great trotters including, Joie de Vie, Giant Victory, Yankee Paco, Kadabra, Mr Muscleman, Windsongs Legacy, Donato Hanover, Deweycheatumnhowe and Muscle Hill. Also on Tuesday morning, 11 three-year-old trotting fillies were entered for this year's Elegantimage Stakes. Those 11 fillies will go directly to the $409,000 final on Canadian Trotting Classic night (September 13). Leading the group of fillies is Shake It Cerry, a winner of more than $1.2 million, from the Jimmy Takter barn. A daughter of Donato Hanover - Solveig, Shake It Cerry is coming off a victory in the $150,000 filly edition of the Zweig Memorial last Friday at Vernon Downs. Shake It Cerry has won 16 of 21 career starts and has won many notable stakes events, including the Del Miller Memorial back in July and last year's two-year-old filly trot Breeders Crown. Also highlighting the group of 11 is the Julie Miller trained Designed To Be. The daughter of Donato Hanover - Sheer Soul won a division of the $103,845 Simcoe Stakes last Friday night at Mohawk. Designed To Be has won three times and has never been worst than third in seven starts this season. She has seven career victories for earnings of more than $593,000 and has only missed board once in 15 career starts. Muscle Babe and Riveting Rosie are two of four Ontario sired fillies in the field. Trained by Dave Menary, Muscle Babe has won four times in 10 starts this season, including the $178,287 SBOA Stakes on May 31 at Mohawk. She has six wins in 18 career starts and career earnings exceeding $248,000. Riveting Rosie was last year's Two-year-old Filly Trotter of the Year in Canada. She only lost twice last season in eight starts and captured $374,000 Peaceful Way Stakes at Mohawk. Trained by John Bax, Riveting Rosie has not had nearly as much success this season, but recently picked up her first win of 2014 in a $105,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event at Grand River Raceway on August 13. Riveting Rosie has won seven times in 18 career starts for earnings of more than $550,000. Here is the full field for the $409,000 Elegantimage Stakes on Saturday, September 13. Chivaree Hanover Demanding Sam Designed To Be Heavens Door Muscle Babe Riveting Rosie Scream And Shout Shake It Cerry Sweetie Hearts Tosca Vanity Matters Along with the Canadian Trotting Classic and Elegantimage Stakes finals on September 13, Mohawk will also have the finals for the $390,000 William Wellwood Memorial and the $385,000 Peaceful Way. Also on that evening, Mohawk will be hosting customer appreciation night. Visit www.MohawkRacetrack.com for more details in the coming days. by Mark McKelvie, for WEG  

Six $18,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots dashes for harness racing rookie trotting colts and geldings were the marquee events on Saturday night (August 16) at Georgian Downs. The first three races on the card were all Grassroots races, and driver Trevor Henry won all of them to get his night started off on the right foot. Henry won the opener with Kadabrasnewrecruit in 2:01.4. Racing over a surface left sloppy and two seconds off due to rain, Kadabrasnewrecruit came from well off-the-pace to gain the lead in the stretch and then stepped away to win by two and a half lengths over Angels Kid (Keith Oliver). Muscles All Over (Eddie Green) finished third. Trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor, Ont. owns Kadabrasnewrecruit, a gelded son of Kadabra. Kadabrasnewrecruit, who was bred by Tymal Farms, broke his maiden in his second attempt, and he has now earned $13,500. He’s the fifth foal out of the Mr Lavec mare Keystone Alberta, who was third in the $100,000 Grassroots final when she was a two-year-old. Olympic Son then gave Henry the double, leading through panels of :30, 1:01.2, and 1:32.1 on his way to a four and three-quarter length victory in 2:02.1. Parkhill Lancelot (Steve Byron) crossed the finish line in second, but was off-stride in doing so, and following a judges’ inquiry, he was moved back to third, elevating original third-place finisher Covert Operative (Per Henriksen) to runner-up status. Paul Reid trains Olympic Son, a colt by Majestic Son, for owner/breeder Bob Key of Leechburg, Pennsylvania. Olympic Son picked up his first win from three attempts and he has now put away $13,320. The winner is the second foal out of the Yankee Glide mare Graceful Sister ($104,714). Snapshot Springs overcame post nine to give Henry the hat trick. Snapshot Springs had command through splits of :29.4, 1:01.4, and 1:33.1 en route to a 2:03.1 triumph. Numbers Game (Kevin Sizer) came in second, beaten a length and a half by the winner, and Jayport All Muscle (Keith Oliver) nabbed third. The Striking Sahbra-Spring Photo gelding is owned and bred by trainer Richard and Regina Beinhauer of Venetia, Pennsylvania. The win was his second (consecutive) in five starts and lifted his earnings to $22,500. In other action, Mandeville now leads the Grassroots point standings for the group after a 2:01.3 tally in the fifth Grassroots flight with Scott Coulter driving. He also went all the way on the lead, clicking off fractions of :30.4, 1:02, and 1:31 before he trotting a :30.3 final kicker to prevail by one and a quarter lengths over Stormont Wizard (Oliver). Top Dollar (Byron) collected third. Trainer Wayne Langille of Harley, Ont. also co-owns the victorious Majestic Son gelding with Brett Burleigh of Paris, Ont. Mandeville, who has won three times in Grassroots competition and banked $31,500, was bred by Dr. John Brown of Granton, Ont. and was purchased for $10,000 at last year’s Canadian Yearling Sale. Mandeville is the fifth foal out of the Yankee Paco mare My Charmer, making him a half-brother to Grassroots winner Momentous (Mr Lavec). Coulter also clicked in the Grassroots nightcap with Call Me Richard. Call Me Richard circled from third to first after the :30-second opening quarter, and after he reached the half in :59.1 and the three-quarters in 1:30.3, he romped to a 12 length decision in 2:01.3. Ontheroad De Vie (Robby Robinson) was next, followed by Concept (Oliver). Call Me Richard, who picked up his other career win in Grassroots action on July 12 at Georgian Downs, is trained by Clare Bradshaw. Andrea Arthur of Scotland, Ont. owns Call Me Richard, whose dam is Andover Hall mare Olympic Dreams. Call Me Richard, now an earner of $23,940, was bred by Tri Star Farms Ltd. of Brantford, Ont. and was hammered down for $11,500 at last year’s Canadian Yearling Sale. The other Grassroots winner was El Diablo Hall and Keith Oliver, who led at the :29.4 opening quarter, the 1:00.2 half, and the 1:31 three-quarters in the fourth Grassroots race. He had a stern challenge from pocket-sitter Freddie (Trevor Henry) through the lane, but El Diablo Hall held sway, prevailing by a head in 2:00.4. Now Thats Scary (Wayne Henry) finished third. Tony Montini trains the winner, a Windsong Espoir gelding, for Ontario owners Albina Montini of Acton, Paul Giammichele of Burlington, and Rick Podolinsky of Alvinston. Dale Hunter of London, Ont., the former head coach of the National Hockey League’s Washington Capitals, also co-owns El Diablo Hall, who has now won six times from seven tries and banked $26,000. He’s the third foal out of the Andover Image mare EL Mistress Chesea, meaning he’s a half-brother to multi-time Grassroots winner Erin Hall. The next Grassroots event for two-year-old colt and gelding trotters will take place on September 6 at Hanover Raceway. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

The three-year-old trotting fillies of the Ontario Sires Stakes are back in harness racing action in both Gold and Grassroots action over the next two days. Six $18,000 Grassroots divisions highlight tonight's night’s card at Mohawk Racetrack. The following evening two $105,000 Gold divisions will be part of Grand River’s Wednesday night program. Making her OSS debut tonight at Mohawk is Acapulco Hall, a daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe who has post five in race five. A winner in her only lifetime start, on July 29 at Pocono Downs, in 1:57.4 for former trainer Fred Grant, the filly has been transferred to the Rick Zeron barn for her Ontario stay. What makes her appearance notable is the fact that she’s a half-sister to 2003 Hambletonian winner Amigo Hall, the second Ontario-sired horse to ever win the coveted event. Ontario trainer Blair Burgess orchestrated that Balanced Image horse’s career which saw him earn in excess of $1 million lifetime. In addition to being a top Grand Circuit performer, Amigo Hall was also dominant in the Ontario Sires Stakes program during his sophomore season, earning over $270,000 from just five starts. Amigo Hall’s baby sister Acapulco Hall is owned by breeder Walnut Hall Limited of Kentucky. She is the 11th foal from the Meadow Road daughter Alis Cat. Amigo Hall stood stud at Tara Hills Stud in Port Perry. He has one starter in the Grassroots event in Valencia Sol who has post one in race 11. Another filly with a brother who was very successful in the Hambletonian is Tosca who has post four in the first of the two Gold splits at Grand River Wednesday. Trainer Per Henriksen of Norwood, Ontario, trains the Muscle Mass daughter he co-owns with Steve Organ of Aurora, Ontario. Tosca’s half-brother Guccio came within a whisker of winning the 2012 Hambletonian, finishing a neck back in second to winner Market Share. Ironically their dam, Southern Senorita, is sired by Yankee Paco, who was the first Ontario-sired horse to win the Hambletonian. He accomplished the feat in 2000 for trainer Doug McIntosh. Both Amigo Hall and Yankee Paco, the only two Ontario-sired colts to capture the Hambletonian to date, were sired by the late, great Balanced Image, a member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. Tomorrow’s divisions at Mohawk Racetrack go postward as races two, three, five, six, 10 and 11 while the two Gold divisions at Grand River on Wednesday are in races one and three. The programs for each may be viewed through these links.  Mohawk Entries - August 12.  Grand River Entries - August 13. Ontario Sire Stakes

Trot Insider has learned that O'Brien Award winning driver Trevor Ritchie, one of the most respected and accomplished drivers in Canadian harness racing, is handing over the reins and retiring from active competition. Ritchie, who cut his teeth driving at Western Fair before moving to the Ontario Jockey Club, has won both the prestigious North America Cup (Quite A Sensation, 1986) and Hambletonian (Yankee Paco, 2000) in his long and illustrious driving career. "Driving horses gave me the opportunity to meet a lot of wonderful people and go to a lot of places that I would not have otherwise visited and I consider myself lucky," Ritchie told Trot Insider on Monday. "I have been very fortunate in my career to have driven some great horses and I would like to thank all the trainers and owners that trusted me to drive for them. I would also like to thank all the caretakers who as we all know were a very important part in any success I've had." To view the rest of this story click here.

Outstanding Kiwi bred Elsu / Make It Hot four year old harness racing gelding Chilli Palmer was a brilliant victor of the $30,505 Corio Waste Management Geelong Cup for M0 or better class over 2570 metres at Beckley Park on Saturday.   A small but select field contested the event – the biggest in Geelong each season, with multi millionaire and crowd favourite Smoken Up (gate three) and Chilli Palmer (gate five) appearing to be the main chances and that’s the way the race panned out.   Our Blackbird from the pole was the best to begin, with Lance Justice and Smoken Up ambling to the front shortly after the start, multiple cups winner Arber three back the markers being followed by Magical Telf, Chilli Palmer, Smudge Bromac and Savesomtimetodream all in indian file behind him.   Magical Telf was taken away from the markers by Alex Ashwood within a lap to race in the open, with Chris Alford immediately following to possie Chilli Palmer one/one and Smudge Bromac also following to be three back in the moving line.   In quarters of 30.5 and 30.9 for the first half of the last mile, Smoken Up was expected to break the clock for the last half after such an easy time as Lance Justice started to up the tempo.   Easing three wide approaching the final bend, Chilli Palmer sprinted like a gazelle in the straight to overtake Smoken Up and register a 3.8 metre untouched margin over Smoken Up who wouldn’t shirk the issue being the champion that he is, with Our Blackbird holding his ground to finish .7 metres away in third place.   In a last half of 56 seconds (28.5 & 27.5), Chilli Palmer returned a mile rate of 1-59.7 for the journey which was nothing special when you take in the quality of the field.   Trained at Lara by Dean Braun who continues to provide winner after winner with ex-Kiwi talent, Chilli Palmer has recorded 10 wins from only 14 race appearances and without doubt is one of harness racing’s future stars.    Kyneton trainer Joe Attard has Yankee Paco / Kellybrooke five year old gelding El Paco absolutely flying at present, chalking up his 11th victory (4 this season) by taking out the prestigious $10,505 James & Son McNamara Memorial Trotters Cup for T5 or better class over 2570 metres on the Geelong program. . Driven by brother Julian as Joe had family commitments in Adelaide, El Paco flew away from the 10 metre mark to lead and rated to perfection, just held on to score by a half head in a thrilling finish over Duke Of The Moment (three wide home turn) from a 20 metre handicap, with the well backed pole marker Quite A Moment coming from last at the bell to finish third after throwing away her chances by galloping shortly after the start. The mile rate 2-06.5.   Bred by Greg Clark who races the horse in partnership with Joe, El Paco is an owners dream, always finishing close up in his races. Len Baker Harness Racing Victoria    

It was a narrow but successful raid on the Wangaratta Stock Foods & Food Supplies 2014 Pacing Cup for Tim Bolitho and Arber. Sitting parked for much of the race from barrier four, the seven-year-old gelding was made to work in the early stages before being guided through opening fractions of 31.1secs and 31.3secs to open the final mile. Driven by Greg Sugars, Arber found the top with a lap to go and wound up with a 30.1sec third quarter before rattling home in 27.9secs as he held second favourite Smudge Bromac at bay by 1.6 metres with all I can by a further eight metres in third. The overall mile rate for the race was 1:59.5 with the winner breaking through for his 16th victory in 71 starts. The Frank Dimentz Jewellers Wangaratta Trotters Cup went to El Paco for Joe Attard. In another heart-stopping finish, the five-year-old proved too good for more the more highly rated pair Tsonga and Theywannacallmesue in a mile rate of 2:07.9. Racing to his 10th overall success, the son of Yankee Paco scored his third win of the calendar year after a pair of victories in early January. Videos of both races attached by Blake Redden Harness Racing Victoria

Talented trotter Rainbow Jay Jay ran one of the quickest last halves seen at Tabcorp Park Menangle for his gait when winning there earlier today but that might not be enough to secure a Glenferrie Farm Challenge invite.   It is what the Rickie Alchin-trained gelding did at that beginning of the race that may cost him a start in the $200,000 Group One on Inter Dominion Grand Final Day on March 2.   After galloping at the start and losing plenty of ground, Rainbow Jay Jay made amends circling the field to beat Neville Vaughan and overcoming the last two quarters of 27.6 and 28.3 seconds. However, stewards saw this through different eyes and stood down the son of Yankee Paco one trial.   Subsequently, Rainbow Jay Jay might be overlooked by selectors who are looking to fill the final two spots of the Australian Team for the Glenferrie Farm Challenge.   The three already confirmed for Team Australia are My High Expectations, Blitzthemcalder and defending champion Keystone Del.   Others in contention of earning an invite include Cold Sister, Elegant Image and Kyvalley Blur.   The Australian Team will be finalised this Saturday night.   Harness Racing New Souh Wales

Long Forest husband and wife Andy & Kate Gath back home after a week in Christchurch with Caribbean Blaster competing at the New Zealand Cup Carnival, took the honours at the Shepparton meeting held on Tuesday November 19 with a stable double – Jeremes Jet/Millpac Maid colt Gowan Brae taking the Elite Horse Transport 3-Y-0 Pace over 2190 metres and 6-Y-0 Yankee Paco/Katie Daley mare Jumeirah Jane the Hunter Home Hardware Trotters Handicap for T0 class over the same journey. Gowan Brae raced by Greg Brodie of Courage Under Fire fame, was first up since April and led throughout from the pole to easily account for the first starter Major Crocker off a three wide trail from near last in the final circuit on the back of the third placegetter Provocatator (one/one) in the last lap. The mile rate 1-59.3. Much improved mare Jumeirah Jane raced by Bullengarook’s Wendy Harrison in partnership with mother Jean Johnstone, was probably the most popular winner on the night when making her 16th appearance at the races. Starting from barrier three, Jumeirah Jane crossed Giacomo inside her shortly after the start and was always travelling boldly under a tight rein. Showing no signs of stopping, Jumeirah Jane scored by 7.7 metres in a rate of 2-06.1 over Thumbs Up Jerry (three back the markers) and the roughie Unsolved Mystery from last. The Goulburn Valley, Bendigo and Echuca areas provided five winners on the program. Moama breeder/owner/trainer/driver Mal Whiteford’s 4-Y-0 Artesian/Kamwood Toy mare Kamwood Dawn snared the Quest Shepparton Pace for C0 class over 1690 metres in a rate of 1-57.8. Given the run of the race from gate three trailing the pacemaker Art De Triumph (gate five), Kamwood Dawn was taken away from the markers on straightening and finished best to score by a half neck from the leader, with Rosemary Lane third after following the pair. Shepparton’s Patrick Ryan combined with Chris Alford to land the Neatline Homes Pace (first division) for C0 class over 1690 metres with 4-Y-0 Rollon Bigred/Chocaholic entire Turnoffate, Raced by Kevin Riseley’s Sheron Park Pty Ltd, Turnoffate despite racing in the open, prevailed by a half head in 1-57.6 in defeating Lets Go Rabbitoh which followed him all of the way. Tuxedo Toff (one/two) finished third after joining the leaders approaching the home turn. Goornong trainer Peter Salathiel joined forces with daughter Katrina to capture the Grenada Park Standardbreds Pacers Handicap for C1 or better class over 2190 metres with 4-Y-0 Courage Under Fire/Be All Dilinger mare Cheval Charette which did her early racing in King Island. Jumping straight to the front from the pole as the tapes released, Cheval Charette was rated to perfection, running out an easy 8 metre victor in 2-02.3 from a death-seating Illawong Bill and Junie Jasper which trailed the winner. Popular local trainer Geoff (Marto) Martin took advantage of a concession for Bolinda’s Josh Duggan to land the Ausure Insurance Brokers Pace for C1 class over 1690 metres with ex-NSW Real Desire/Nepeans Last Bird 5-Y-0 gelding Mister Desirable, leading for the majority of the journey to gain the day in advance of Saint Liliana (one/one) which joined the winner on the home turn, with Tom Grainger third. The mile rate 1-59.8. Kyabram trainer Greg Caldwell’s honest 4-Y-0 Union Guy/Orta Be Ruthless gelding Ortabe Good saluted the judge in the Neatline Homes Pace (second division) with Tooleen reinsman Nigel Milne in the sulky. Given a cosy trip three back in the moving line from gate three with the polemarker Kentucky Sands leading, Ortabe Good ran home strongly off a three wide trail last lap to gain the day by 4 metres in advance of Donated which raced in the open from the bell, with The Muse (one/one) third. The mile rate 1-58.9. Other winners on the nine event card were : Jingling Silver (Paul Davies – Baddaginnie) with Daryl Douglas in the sulky and Our Warwick Lad (David Aiken – Avenel) and Nathan Jack. Len Baker

Christmas came early for Kilmore based mother and daughter Rita and Monique Burnett at Yarra Valley on Monday October 14, when they snared the quinella in the aptly named Christmas Parties Trotters Handicap for T0 or better class over 2150 metres aboard the Bill Millner (Kilmore) trained stablemates My Archie Way and Wortherly. Stepping swiftly from the 10 metre mark to lead, My Archie Way (Monique) was content to allow Wortherly (Rita) off the same mark to take over shortly after the start, with the pair controlling the race. After a cosy trip, My Archie Way was eased away from the markers to issue a challenge on straightening and with the race to themselves, My Archie Way ($8.20) prevailed by 2.2 metres in a rate of 2-06.5, with the heavily supported favourite Did I Imagine It 1.7 metres away in third place after racing in the open for most of the journey also from 10 metres. A six year old gelding by Yankee Paco from Auravalley bred and raced by Bill Millner, My Archie Way has fronted the starter on 47 occasions, winning four times. Beautifully bred five year old Mach Three/Out Swing N gelding Machin Out is getting better with every outing and after coming off a great third at Tabcorp Park Melton on Friday, scored an easy victory in the United Petroleum Pace for C4 & C5 class over 2150 metres. Trained at Melton by Lance Justice, Machin Out taking a concession for competent teenager Zac Phillips began with a rush from outside the front line to lead with ease and after being allowed to dictate terms to suit, coasted to the wire untouched to register a 4.7 metre victory over the Jayne Davies stablemates Golden Grinder out wide from four back the markers and polemarker Mister Clooney which trailed the winner. The mile rate 2-02.3.  It was Machin Out's 11th victory in 79 outings. Former Kiwi 6-Y-0 In The Pocket/Lite Jade mare Lite Jagermeister made it two wins from three Australian outings when successful in the De Bortoli Pace for C2 & C3 class for Coimadai duo Adam Kelly and Gavin Lang. Despite racing in the open from gate three shadowing the polemarker Amazing Kano, Lite Jagermeister travelled smoothly all through the 2150 metre journey, winning by 3.7 metres from Magical Molly which trailed her in a rate of 1-59. Amazing Kano held down third 15.2 metres away. Melton owner/trainer/driver Jason Hackett was victorious with 4-Y-0 Armbro Operative/Heartlite mare Open Heart in the Oaks Day Pace for C0 class (mares) over 1650 metres. Fronting up from a fourth at Bendigo the previous Thursday, Open Heart was restrained from inside the second line to settle at the tail of the field, with Isntshesomething speeding across from gate three to assume control.  Sent forward three wide racing for the bell, Open Heart sustained a long run to record a 9.2 metre margin in advance of Dancinwithjodi (three back the markers), with Isntshesomething weakening to finish third. Bred and raised in the deep south of the Shaky Isles, Jason Hackett is stable foreman for Lance Justice. The old stagers stepped out in the Cox Plate Day Claiming Pace over 2150 metres, with victory going the way of the Ross Sugars (Melton) trained 8-Y-0 I Am A Fool/Sheza Fake gelding Cowboy Cadillac who chalked up his 19th victory when making his 144th appearance at the races, while also giving Zac Phillips a driving double for the afternoon. Starting from inside the second line, Cowboy Cadillac raced by Denis Grieve and partners was quickly away from the markers to settle four back in the moving line, with the 14-Y-0 Mister Douglas leading out from the pole, before surrendering shortly after to Dartmoor. Once the speed slackened, Cowboy Cadillac was off and running to park in the open, with Phillips dictating the terms of the race. Taking care of the leader prior to the home turn, Cowboy Cadillac defied all challengers to score from the fast finishing Flyin Interstate from last, with Mister Douglas and Takeiteasyonme dead-heating for third. The mile rate 2-00.9. Len Baker

Talented trotter Rainbow Jay Jay will be set for the Franco Trotters Series at Tabcorp Park Menangle later in the year after winning his past three starts in New South Wales.  The five year old is being trained by Menangle Park horseman Rickie Alchin and he believes the son of Yankee Paco has the ability to go to the next level.   “He definitely has the speed to be a top trotter but only time will tell if he is ready to take that next step, his main aim will be the Franco series in November but I’m seriously contemplating a trip to Queensland with him to see if he can qualify for the Great Southern Star,” Alchin said.   “On ability I think he can be the best in New South Wales and he would really be suited by having a couple of runs in the one day, his owner Brad Watts had him here in Sydney as a young horse but he thought he was struggling to compete with Amore Stride so he went to Victoria but he has strengthened up since then.” In Rainbow Jay Jay’s latest victory, the final 800 metres was run in 56.8 seconds. “He is a very fast horse, we haven’t let him go off the gate since he’s been back but once he is up and trotting he is very quick.” “His last two runs in Victoria were very good too before he arrived and he was racing some nice horses in those events, he ended up winning seven races last season so he did a very good job.” While Alchin drove Rainbow Jay Jay at his first start back in New South Wales, Kerry Ann Turner has driven the gelding at his past two starts. “I’m very happy with how Kerry Ann is going with him so I’m happy to leave her on to do the driving, she gets on very well with him, he can be a tricky horse around the stables but once he is out on the track he switches on.” Alchin is currently working a team of 22 horses with the majority of those two year olds.  Courtesy of Harness Racing New Zealand

With high-level harness racing two-year-old credentials to build on, Murmur Hanover has license to be a serious Hambletonian contender for Quebec-based brothers, Claude Bardier, 48, and Normand Bardier, Jr., 50.

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