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This Week: Yonkers International Trot, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Courageous Lady, Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio; John Simpson Stakes, Harrah's Philadelphia, Chester, Pa.; and Kindergarten Series, The Meadowlands, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: This week's marquee event on the Grand Circuit is the $1 million Yonkers International Trot at Empire City Casino, which will be held on Saturday (Oct. 13) at Yonkers Raceway. A field of 10 top trotters will head to the gate in the Yonkers International. Also on Saturday, Northfield Park will host the $125,000 Courageous Lady for 3-year-old filly pacers. Grand Circuit action this week begins on Wednesday (Oct. 10) at Harrah's Philadelphia with three divisions in the $100,002 John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old filly trotters and three divisions in the $92,002 John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old filly pacers. On Friday (Oct. 12) The Meadowlands will host the fourth leg of The Kindergarten for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. There will be three divisions for the freshman colt trotters, two divisions each for the filly trotters and filly pacers and a single division for the colt pacers. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: Setting the world record for 3-year-old trotting colts of 1:50 when winning at the Meadowlands earlier this year, Six Pack lowered his mark with a 1:49.1 performance and swept the 126th Kentucky Futurity, sponsored by Hunterton Farms, Stoner Manor Inc. and Menhammer Stuteri Ab, on Sunday (Oct. 7) at Red Mile. Six Pack won the Kentucky Futurity with a world record 1:49.1 performance. Trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt got off the gate third behind Crystal Fashion leading the field and Met's Hall occupying the pocket. Svanstedt tipped the Muscle Mass colt off the rail past a :27.1 opening quarter, cleared control, and kept the pace hot through a :54.4 half. Six Pack's margin grew moving around the final turn as he passed three-quarters in 1:21.2 ahead of Crystal Fashion and Met's Hall chasing behind. Svanstedt urged his colt through the stretch and darted to the finish while Crystal Fashion narrowed on the leader a touch towards the outside in second. Met's Hall settled for third ahead of You Know You Do fourth. Winning his ninth race from 12 starts this season and his 13th from 20 overall, Six Pack exceeded $1 million in career earnings for owners Ake Svanstedt Inc., Little E LLC, Stall Kalmar FF and Lars Berg. He paid $4.80 to win. Six Pack also won his Futurity elimination after plowing past Met's Hall in the stretch and holding off a late charge from Fiftydallarbill to win in 1:50.2. Unhurried off the gate, Tactical Landing cruised to the lead heading to the half and coasted to a 1:50.2 win in the other elimination for the Kentucky Futurity. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Yannick Gingras - 1,260; 2. Tim Tetrick - 1,165.5; 3. David Miller - 961.5; 4. Scott Zeron - 564; 5. Andrew McCarthy - 438.5. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 972.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 969; 3. Tony Alagna - 563.5; 4. Jim Campbell - 406; 5. Julie Miller - 355. Owners: 1. Fashion Farms - 299; 2. Burke Racing Stable - 217.4; 3. Weaver Bruscemi - 200.9; 4. Marvin Katz - 196; 5. Robert Key - 182. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next weekend at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono with 12 Breeders Crown eliminations (if necessary) set to take place on Friday (Oct. 19) and Saturday (Oct. 20). Hoosier Park will host The Pegasus for 3-year-olds of both sexes and gaits and The Meadowlands has the fifth leg of the Kindergarten for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

New York, NY --- Marion Marauder, who finished second in last year's $1 million Yonkers International Trot, is the 3-1 morning-line favorite in Saturday's (Oct. 13) 40th edition of the invitational, which will be raced at 1-1/4 miles at Empire City Casino's Yonkers Raceway. The 5-year-old stallion, representing Canada, was made the top choice after getting post No. 1 on Tuesday at the event's draw and press conference at Manhattan's 21 Club. Scott Zeron will drive Marion Marauder for trainer Paula Wellwood. Marion Marauder has won six of 10 races this year and finished no worse than second in any start. He heads to the International Trot off a win in the Caesars Trotting Classic on Sept. 21 at Hoosier Park. Other victories in 2018 include the John Cashman Memorial and Cleveland Trotting Classic. He was second in the Maple Leaf Trot and Maxie Lee Memorial Invitational. "It beats the heck out of the seven or eight hole, that's for sure," said Mike Keeling, who shares the training duties on Marion Marauder with his wife, Paula Wellwood, about drawing the rail. "At least we won't be parked. "He loves three weeks between races and this works out perfectly from his last start. I think he's probably a touch better than he was for the Hoosier race. We're really pleased with him right now. As long as he's in good shape and the race sets up for him, we'll be fine. "I follow the Europeans a little bit. I know Lionel, I know Ringostarr Treb. The other horses I'm not so familiar with. We'll look at the program pages. We can only do what we can do, it's up to Scott to figure out the rest." For his career, Marion Marauder has won 20 of 48 races and earned $3.08 million for owners Jean Wellwood and Devin Keeling. He was the 2016 Trotter of the Year after winning the Trotting Triple Crown and captured another Dan Patch Award in 2017 as best older male trotter. Marion Marauder has enjoyed success at Yonkers, with three wins and two seconds in five career starts. One of the victories came in the Yonkers Trot on his way to the Triple Crown. Ariana G, the U.S. representative and lone mare in the field of 10, drew post three and is 5-1 on the morning line. The International Trot has been won by a mare 11 times, most recently by Peace Corps in 1991. The International Trot was contested from 1959 through 1995 before being resurrected in 2015. A Dan Patch Award divisional champion at ages 2 and 3, the 4-year-old Ariana G has won five of 11 races this year and heads to the International Trot off a win over male rivals in the Dayton Trotting Derby on Sept. 28. Other victories this season include the Hambletonian Maturity and Graduate Series championship. She also won her elimination for the Maple Leaf Trot and finished third in the final. For her career, Ariana G has won 26 of 37 races and earned $2.36 million for owners Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Yannick Gingras will drive the mare for trainer Jimmy Takter. "You have to be happy with the draw," said Gingras. "But I think most of the good horses got good spots too. It will be a tactical race, but we can't complain about where we'll start. "I think she's super sharp. She raced really good in Ohio in her last start. Jimmy skipped Lexington pointing toward this race. I think it was a smart move, no doubt. I think she's got as good a shot as anybody." Will Take Charge, a second Canadian representative as a late replacement for the Netherlands' Dreammoko, drew post seven and is 6-1. The Jeff Gillis-trained 5-year-old gelding, who will have Tim Tetrick in the sulky, has won nine of 21 races this year, including the Crawford Farms Open Trot and Maxie Lee Memorial, for owner Mac Nichol. For his career, he has won 21 of 71 starts and $848,116. Elitloppet winner Ringostarr Treb, one of two horses representing Italy, leads the international contingent. The 8-year-old stallion is trained by New England native Jerry Riordan, who conditioned last year's International Trot champion Twister Bi. Ringostarr Treb, who has won 30 of 86 career races and $1.57 million, will start from post four with driver Wilhelm "Wim" Paal and is 4-1. The stallion is owned by E.V.A.M. Racing. "I'm very happy about the post," Paal said. "It keeps me a little bit out of the traffic in the first turn. I can choose my own race. I think there are four or five horses that have a good shot in this race --- Marion Marauder, Up And Quick, Ariana G. For me, Lionel is a horse you should not underestimate because he shows his best at a mile-and-a-quarter and he is a classy horse. "I think the small track gives a big opportunity to the four (inside) horses. They are all good horses and were lucky in the draw." Up And Quick, who won the 2015 Prix d'Amerique, drew post two and is 10-1 with top Yonkers driver Jason Bartlett in the sulky for trainer Antoine Lherete. The 10-year-old stallion, representing France, has won 16 of 74 career races and $2.81 million. He is owned by Ecurie Quick Star. Lionel, representing Norway, drew post nine in the second tier and is 10-1 with owner Goran Antonsen set to drive. The 8-year-old stallion, trained by Daniel Reden, won his Elitloppet elimination and finished fifth in the final. He has won 23 of 69 races and $1.67 million. The remaining International Trot participants are Italy's Arazi Boko, Sweden's Cruzado Dela Noche and Pastore Bob, and Denmark's Slide So Easy. For video of the post draw click here. Racing begins at 1 p.m. Saturday. The International Trot is race No. 8 on the card and scheduled for 3:40 p.m. Following is the field in post-position order for the $1 million Yonkers International Trot. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Marion Marauder-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-3/1 2-Up And Quick-Antoine Lherete-Jason Bartlett-10/1 3-Ariana G-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/1 4-Ringostarr Treb-Wilhelm Paal-Jerry Riordan-4/1 5-Pastore Bob-Johan Untersteiner-Johan Untersteiner-8/1 6-Cruzado Dela Noche-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-12/1 7-Will Take Charge-Tim Tetrick-Jeff Gillis-6/1 8-Arazi Boko-Alessandro Gocciadoro-Alessandro Gocciadoro-15/1 9-Lionel-Goran Antonsen-Daniel Reden-10/1 10-Slide So Easy-Flemming Jensen-Flemming Jensen-15/1 For more information, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

The New York State Gaming Commission announced today the implementation of enhanced security and drug testing protocols for the International Trot. These protocols will require out of competition testing of all horses. In addition to enhanced security measures, the protocols require out of competition testing of all horses participating. The process will be coordinated and supervised by Dr. Scott E. Palmer, the Gaming Commission's Equine Medical Director and Daniel Haughney, the Gaming Commission's Director of Investigations. The protocols will provide additional safeguards to protect the integrity of the sport and the welfare of the horses. In 2015 the Commission implemented the security and drug testing measures for Thoroughbred Grade 1 races with purses of at least $1 million. In addition to fostering transparency and accountability in high-profile races, the measures ensure compliance among horsepersons and veterinarians who travel to New York from across the world to compete. The security protocols in effect for the Yonkers International Trot include the following: Horses racing in the Yonkers International Trot must be on the grounds by 1 p.m. on Friday, October 12, 2018. The horses will be subject to a continuous 24-hour dedicated watch by security personnel leading to post time. During a dedicated watch, a security guard or Gaming Commission investigator will keep the horses under constant surveillance. Anyone (i.e., veterinarians) entering a stall or otherwise having physical contact with a horse under watch will be directly observed by an investigator. Unless exempted by the Presiding Judge, no horse entered in the Yonkers International Trot may be treated after 1 p.m. on October 12, unless a Commission security person is present. Security personnel will monitor all treatments performed by veterinarians. All syringes and containers for administered medication will be retained by the Commission for possible testing. The Commission is taking out-of-competition blood samples from participating horses well in advance of the race and sending them to the New York State Equine Drug Testing and Research Program at Morrisville State College for immediate testing. The Commission will coordinate with other jurisdictions to obtain out-of-competition samples from horses that are not stabled in New York. No harness bags or containers will be allowed in the paddock. From the NY Gaming Commission

YONKERS, NY, Monday, October 8, 2018-It wasn't quite the same as Christopher Columbus landing in the new world, but right around 9:30 Monday morning (Oct. 8th), an oversized horse trailer discovered Yonkers Raceway. The contents of said trailer were six overseas trotters set to compete in Saturday afternoon's (Oct. 13th) $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino. The three stallions-Lionel (Norway), Ringostarr Treb (Italy) and Up and Quick (France)-set up shop in the Raceway's Old Glory Building-getting the lay of the land. Video can be seen at... https://www.dropbox.com/sh/p8opx31ub8zsm2w/AAB3SLVB3MkRZIxXn7ChuvHDa?dl=0 The three geldings-Arazi Boko (Italy), Pastore Bob (Sweden) and Slide So Easy (Denmark)-said good-bye to their friends and were headed to New Jersey farms. All 10 of the participants in the 40th International-the others being Ariana G (United States), Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden), Marion Marauder (Canada) and Will Take Charge (Canada)-are due at the Raceway by 9 AM Friday (Oct. 12th) The mile-and-a-quarter trotting classic is augmented by a pair of $250,000 Invitationals, giveaways, contests, international-themed food and drink, live music, etc. There's also a special all-stakes Pick 4 wager with Yonkers (races 7 and 8) and Belmont (Pebbles and Floral Park). Note the change from the original race layout, with the Dan Rooney Invitational---led by Bit of a Legend N, Lazarus N and McWicked-moved from the sixth race to race 11. None of the previously-sent post times have changed... Race 1 - 1 PM Race 2 - 1:20 PM Race 3 - 1:40 PM Race 4 - 2 PM Race 5 - 2:20 PM Race 6 - 2:40 PM Race 7 - 3:10 PM $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot (1¼ miles) Race 8 - 3:40 PM $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino (1¼ miles) Race 9 - 4:10 PM Open (Handicap?) Trot Race 10 - 4:40 PM Trot Race 11 - 5 PM $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace Race 12 - 5:20 PM The Saturday card shall be drawn Monday afternoon, save for the International, which is to be drawn Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 9th) at a midtown luncheon. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

The post positions for the $1 million Yonkers International Trot will be drawn Tuesday October 9 at noon at the famed 21 Club in New York City. The Standardbred Owners Association of New York will be streaming the draw live on their facebook page www.facebook.com/soaofny. Tuesday's activities are scheduled to begin at 12 noon. Fans can expect the live draw on Facebook to start as soon as all of the drivers, trainers and owners have assembled. This year marks the 40th edition of the International Trot and Yonkers will be hosting the historic trotting championship on Saturday, October 13. Ten trotters will be racing and representing seven different countries: Arazi Boko - Italy Ariana G - USA Cruzado Dela Noche - Sweden Lionel - Norway Marion Marauder - Canada Pastore Bob - Sweden Ringostarr Treb - Italy Slide So Easy - Denmark Up And Quick - France Will Take Charge - Canada The Yonkers International Trot will have a 3:40pm post as race eight on a 12 race card. First post is at 1pm. From the SOA of NY

YONKERS, NY, Friday, October 5, 2018-Six overseas trotters have arrived in New York in advance of next Saturday afternoon's (Oct. 13th) $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino. The half-dozen, who flew from Belgium, found their way to John F. Kennedy International Airport and the ARK's on-site quarantine facilities. No worse for wear are Arazi Boko (Italy), Lionel (Norway), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Ringostarr Treb (Italy). Slide So Easy (Denmark) and Up and Quick (France). Some, if not all, of the six are expected at the Raceway early Monday morning (Oct. 8th) to begin their training for the 40th International. The mile-and-a-quarter trotting classic is augmented by a pair of $250,000 Invitationals, giveaways, contests, international-themed food and drink, live music, etc. There's also a special all-stakes Pick 4 wager with Yonkers and Belmont. Further details and photo/video shall be sent when available. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, N.Y. – Winning the Elitlopp this year with Ringostarr Treb was surreal for Jerry Riordan, but the trainer quickly realized the experience wasn’t for the claustrophobic. Just after the race, Riordan and driver Wim Paal led Ringostarr Treb up the track along the outside rail. The track apron at Solvalla is elevated from the racing surface and the thousands of fans along the fence leaned over and reached out. Their extended arms hung over the trainer, driver, and horse, enclosing them in a tunnel of humanity. The newly crowned Elitlopp winner took it all in stride. “If you have a horse that can deal with it, it’s always nice to bring them over to the public,” Riordan said. “The horse, he’s such a cool horse, an easy-going kind of a guy. At one point, there was an old lady in a wheelchair that reached up and grabbed his shadow roll and was pulling him over so she could pet him and he didn’t care. We had taken the sulky off, we were just letting him walk along. “I was with the horse and we have this entourage behind us and we were only going to do it for a little bit, but as we were going up the fence, there were people waiting for him,” Riordan continued. “That’s my biggest memory of the post-race celebrating on the track. The people here are so enthusiastic, and they’ve been watching races all their lives. It was just a real pleasure to be able to have that fun and have so many people patting me and Paal on the back and rubbing the horse between his ears. He was loving it, he was fantastic.” Riordan’s journey with Ringostarr Treb began after owners E.V.A.M. Racing transferred the trotter to his care from former conditioner Holger Ehlert. Although he was a claimer at 2 and 3, Ringostarr Treb won the Group 2 Sweden Cup for Ehlert before coming to Riordan. When the son of Classic Photo showed up in the barn, Riordan realized he knew little about the horse he’d been competing against for years before. “When I saw him, I had the wrong impression of the horse completely from racing against him. I just thought he was a horse that leaves fast and finishes really strong, and when he came to the barn, I went around the corner and saw him in his stall and he was this beautiful horse,” Riordan recalled. “He’s not very big, but he’s gorgeous, beautiful head, really intelligent looking. “For all the horse owners out there, they should always have hope. This horse was racing in a 10-claimer when he was 3 years old. Nobody claimed him,” Riordan said. “It just goes to show, once in a while, it happens.” Riordan stripped most of Ringostarr Treb’s equipment off and changed the horse’s racing style. Instead of gunning the lead in every start, Riordan raced Ringostarr Treb from behind. The changes worked. Ringostarr Treb won a Gulddivisionen trot in his debut for Riordan, finished second in the 2017 edition of the Group 1 Hugo Åbergs Memorial, and won the Group 1 Sundsvall Open Trot.  Despite Riordan’s early success with Ringostarr Treb, the stallion didn’t reach his full potential until after a bout in France competing at the prestigious winter meet at Hippodrome de Vincennes. Although he was only third in the Group 2 Grand Prix du Bourbonnais and was off the board in his next three starts, including a seventh in the Group 1 Grand Prix d’Amérique, Ringostarr Treb blossomed physically racing in the long distances of the French classics. “The biggest thing, when I saw the horse really improve was after that winter meet in Paris. The horse just came out of it like a bull,” Riordan said. “He had terrible luck, he was interfered with in the Prix d’Amérique. But the real positive was, after the winter meet down there, he just got so much stronger. Going those type of speeds over the long distance just really seemed to bring him to another level because this spring he was just really, really good.” Ringostarr Treb returned to Sweden a winner, taking the Group 1 Olympitravet in track record time April 28. He followed it up with his two-heat Elitlopp score, improving his record to 30 wins in 86 starts with 12.9 million Swedish krona earned.  Although Ringostarr Treb’s Elitlopp victory on the last Sunday in May was impressive – he beat Propulsion by a length in 1:51 – the star wouldn’t return to the races until the fall. He scratched out of the Oslo Grand Prix June 16 after getting an infection in a joint, which was initially only made worse with treatment. “He had an infection. The doctor injected an ankle and there was a reaction to it,” Riordan said. “It shouldn’t have been that big of a deal, but the clinic overreacted. It created a worse problem than the actual infection. That was what knocked him out for the whole summer, the reaction to the reaction.” Although Riordan won last year’s Yonkers International Trot with Twister Bi, with that trotter moved to a new stable by his owners and with Ringostarr Treb on the sidelines, the conditioner didn’t think he’d make it back to New York for this year’s renewal of the $1 million stakes. “Honestly, I never thought I’d be back with him,” Riordan said. “We never had any particular objective, but we knew it was possible to make Yonkers. We were ready.” With an International Trot invitation accepted, but without a race since May 27, Riordan entered Ringostarr Treb in a 1,640-meter overnight for winners of at least 475,001 Swedish krona at Solvalla September 26. Ringostarr Treb raced at the back of the pack early with Torbjörn Jansson at the helm. When he pulled three wide around the final turn and began to advance, Ringostarr Treb made a break in stride, finishing sixth. “When I raced him the other night, a lot of things combined to create the situation. The regular driver was suspended, it rained like hell and they put sand on the track. He’s a horse that will make a break every now and then if you don’t know him,” Riordan said. “When he tipped him out, he was really hanging onto him and he didn’t want him to go too fast, he was on the bit pretty good and he was going to win. He was three-wide and he touched himself and lost it.” Despite the break, Riordan was pleased with the effort. He saw an explosive move on the turn before Ringostarr Treb galloped and knew the horse still had his desire to win. However, once Riordan realized Ringostarr Treb would need a clean line to compete at Yonkers, he plotted his next move. He entered his star in a qualifier at Hamburg Trabrennbahn Wednesday (October 3). With Wim Paal back at the controls, Ringostarr Treb breezed around the track, putting down a clean line and getting another tightener over the 2,200-meter distance. “Probably it’s exactly what he needs, another start in the sulky. It’s like we went 6 furlongs with him last Saturday and now we’re going to give him a little longer workout. I think he’ll be coming to New York just right,” Riordan said. “We’ll put a good, clean line on him and it will pick him up a little more too, so everybody will be in a good mood when we put him on the plane to send him over.” Ringostarr Treb will face nine rivals in the Yonkers International Trot: Arazi Boko (Italy), Ariana G (United States), Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden), Lionel (Norway), Marion Marauder (Canada), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Slide So Easy (Denmark), Up And Quick (France), and Will Take Charge (Canada). Riordan thinks the mare is the one to beat. “If Ariana G can get around the turns and can handle that extra quarter mile, it could be interesting with her in there,” he said. “It’s a nice field, it’s a balanced field. I’d like to think that ‘Ringo,’ if he’s in as good a shape as I hope he’ll be, can beat these. I think that Ariana G, with her speed and her form, she could be very dangerous.” The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is slated for Saturday, October 13 at Yonkers Raceway. The card will also feature a pair of $250,000 invitationals, the Harry Harvey Trot and Dan Rooney Pace. For more information on the event and its participants, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Brandon Valvo, for the SOA of NY

Yonkers, NY --The $1 Million Yonkers International Trot at Empire City Casino will be contested on Saturday afternoon,October 13, at Yonkers Raceway when 10 of the world's elite trotters converge on the historic harness oval for the 40th edition of the 1¼- mile global classic.   It will be the fourth straight year that the purse is the richest in the history of New York State harness racing, since Empire City president and CEO, Timothy J. Rooney, brought back the International in 2015 after a 20-year hiatus.   The 2018 Yonkers International Trot has attracted the world's best from seven countries: Canada, Italy, and Sweden with two entrants apiece, and the United States, Norway, Denmark, and France with single entrants.   First post time is at 1:00 p.m., and post time for the Yonkers International is at 3:40 p.m. for the spectacular card that also includes a pair of $250,000 Invitational races: the Harry Harvey Trot [10 starters, 1¼ miles, post time 2:40 p.m.] and the Dan Rooney Pace[8 starters, 1 mile, post time 3:10 p.m.].   The hopes of the U.S.A. rest on the shoulders of the only mare in the race, Ariana G., as she tries to become the ninth lady in history to accomplish the feat. Delmonica Hanover, Une de Mai and Roquepine each won a pair, and Classical Way, Armbro Flight, Fresh Yankee, Kit Lobell, and Peace Corps round out the exclusive distaff octet.   Ariana G. has 26 career victories in 37 starts, good for a 70 % win percentage. Owned by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, the homebred daughter of Muscle Hill comes off a track-record (1:52.1) effort in the Dayton Trotting Derby, beating the boys, on September 27th with catch-driver Brian Sears in the bike for trainer Jimmy Takter. It was her fifth win in 11 seasonal starts to boost her career earnings to a lofty $2,367,709.   New England-born trainer Jerry Riordan, now an expatriate racing out of Sweden by way of Italy, will attempt a rare feat as he tries to win back-to-back Internationals with a different horse. Riordan conditioned last year's champ, the Italian Whirlwind Twister Bi, and will trigger the highly-regarded Ringostarr Treb postward this year.   In 1978 and 1979, the immortal Billy Haughton trained back-to-back United States flag-carriers in Cold Comfort and Doublemint, both driven by his son Peter. Ironically the senior Haughton, one of the sport's great sulky stars, never drove an International winner.   A decade prior, Frenchman Jean-Rene Gougeon trained and reined consecutive International champs in the aforementioned French mares Roquepine and Une De Mai in 1968 and 1969, respectively. Ringostarr won both his elimination and the final of the prestigious Elitloppet at Solvalla Racecourse in Sweden earlier this year, the time for the final was a flashy 1:51. Ringostarr Treb has 30 wins in 85 career starts.   Canada's Marion Marauder returns seeking International glory after a second-place finish last year. Now a five-year-old, Marion Marauder won the Yonkers Trot at Yonkers as a three-year-old en route to the Trotting Triple Crown, so he has an affinity for the sharp turns of the half-mile oval.   The five-year-old son of Muscle Hill is Canada-driven with Scott Zeron in the sulky, Canada co-owned (Marion Wellwood and grandson Devin Keeling) and Canada co-trained (Devin's parents, Mike Keeling and Paula Wellwood, with Paula listed as stateside trainer).   Marion Marauder has made his $3,080,380 in only 48 career starts (20 wins, 15 seconds, 5 thirds), with six of those wins and four seconds this season ($544,680). His Yonkers resume reads three wins--including the 2016 Yonkers Trot en route to the Trotting Triple Crown--and a pair of seconds in five starts.   The field for the $1-Million Yonkers International Trot at Empire City Casino includes:   Arazi Boko (Italy) Ariana G (United States) Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden) Lionel (Norway) Marion Marauder (Canada) Pastore Bob (Sweden) Ringostarr Treb (Italy) Slide So Easy (Denmark) Up and Quick (France) Will Take Charge (Canada)   International History: The International Trot was launched in 1959 at now-defunct Roosevelt Raceway with the artichoke-eating French standout Jamin capturing the premiere. Tim Rooney brought the race to his historic half-mile oval in Westchester as host site in 1988 with the closing of Roosevelt, with that edition taken by the U.S.A.'s Mack Lobell.   In 2015, the 37th edition of the Yonkers International Trot marked the revitalization of the worldwide showcase after a 20-year absence, thanks again to Rooney's efforts. Papagayo E. became Norway's first International winner in taking the return. Yonkers' famous harness oval had last hosted the spectacle in 1995, when it was captured by Sweden's His Majesty.   The powerful, French flag-carrier Ideal du Gazeau, with his white blaze and an amazing burst of speed, was the only three-time International champion under the reins of Eugene Lefevre. Holding his head high in a unique and exciting trotting style, Ideal du Gazeau pulled off the Pat Riley-esque "three-peat" consecutively in 1981, '82 and '83, after finishing second to the American mareClassical Way (John Simpson, Jr.) in his debut in 1980.   Race Day Festivities:   The Trackside Beer Garden features 16 specialty craft beers and international concessions such as beer bratwurst and Bavarian pretzels. Food & drink tickets are available for purchase at the event, starting at 10 tickets for $10, with a beer sampling wristband available for $50, plus tax. For guests looking for a more traditional racing experience, the Empire Terrace restaurant, which overlooks the racetrack, will also be open starting at 12:00 p.m. with an a la carte menu available (reservations are encouraged: 914-968-4200 ext. 649) Throughout the event, enjoy a trackside performance by The Nerds, the New Jersey-based Rock & Roll fun-omenon band, presented by iHeartRadio. Q104.3, New York's Classic Rock radio station, will also be on-site with giveaways and promotions. Before the horses take off, Empire Club Members should be sure to visit a Promotions Booth between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to receive one free paper entry for the International Trot Cash Giveaway, featuring over $10,000 in cash prizes. The first 4,000 Empire Club Members to visit a Promotions Booth will receive a free commemorative International Trot hat. Guests can become a member of the free Empire Club by visiting any Promotions Booth on the casino floor.The 2018 Yonkers International Trot is free to attend and open to all ages. For additional information on each of the participating horses, visit www.InternationalTrot.com. by John Cirillo, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, NY, Friday, October 5, 2018-If the best trotters in the world competing for a boatload of money doesn't quite do it for you, let's talk food and drink. The menu for Yonkers Raceway's International Trot program Saturday afternoon, Oct. 13th, offers something for everyone. It begins with a beer garden at the track apron, as in 16 specialty craft lagers celebrating the international flavor of the event, not to mention Oktoberfest. The beer garden's array of edibles include everything from burgers to chicken wings to bier bratwurst and Bavarian jumbo pretzels. All apron food/drink purchases are made via prepaid tickets, purchased at the site. Tickets are priced at 10 for $10, 20 for $18 and 25 for $20 (tax included for each package). Unlimited beer samplings are $50, plus taxes and fees. The Nerds are also on hand, performing at 12 Noon-4 PM The Empire Terrace is open for lunch, starting at 12 Noon. Reservations are required and may be made at (914) 457-2457. Saturday's race schedule is as such... Race 1 - 1 PM Race 2 - 1:20 PM Race 3 - 1:40 PM Race 4 - 2 PM Race 5 - 2:20 PM Race 6 - 2:40 PM $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace Race 7 - 3:10 PM $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot (1¼ miles) Race 8 - 3:40 PM $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino (1¼ miles) Race 9 - 4:10 PM Open (Handicap?) Trot Race 10 - 4:40 PM Trot Race 11 - 5 PM Race 12 - 5:20 PM Note that races 7 and 8 are included in a special Pick 4 with Belmont Park, and post tines for the those stakes ($200,000 Pebbles and $100,000 Floral Park) and program pages shall be sent when available. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, October 4, 2018- The fact that Marion Marauder found himself invited to participate in the 40th International Trot was unrelated to any new North American harness racing trade agreement. He's just pretty good. Three million dollars takes care of a lot of tariffs on any side of the border. The million-dollar Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino goes Saturday afternoon, Oct. 13th (first post 1 PM), and you couldn't legally assemble a field of 10 world-class trotters without including Marion Marauder. "He's made that money for a reason," driver Scott Zeron said. Actually, any number of reasons. "He's always resilient, has never thrown out a bad race, does his job, can take air and knows where the finish line is." The Great White North won three of the first dozen Internationals (Tie Silk-1962, mares Armbro Flight-1966 and Fresh Yankee-1970), but it's been a long time waiting for a fourth. "I wasn't even born when those happened," the 29-year-old Zeron said (Some of us were. Just sayin'). (Author's aside...The late addition of Will Take Charge gives Canada two legitimate chances in this International) Marion Marauder, a 5-year-old son of Muscle Hill, is Canada-driven, Canada co-owned (Marion Wellwood & grandson Devin Keeling) and Canada co-trained (Devin's parents, Mike Keeling & Paula Wellwood, with Paula listed as stateside trainer). "I have a great rapport with Paula and Mike," Zeron said. "They're laid back and love their animals." Despite bleeding all that Canadian, Marion Marauder had not once been in the penalty box. "I've never had to use him hard, go down to the half in 54 seconds or some crazy number," Zeron "His schedule (the International is just Marion Marauder's 11th race of the season) has always been planned to give him time off between starts," Zeron said. "He purposely skipped (the) Dayton (Trotting Derby) and didn't go to Lexington because Paula and Mike were hoping Yonkers would invite him. In fact, Marion Marauder has made his $3,080,380 in only 48 career starts (20 wins, 15 seconds, 5 thirds), with six of those wins and four seconds this season ($544,680). His Westchester resume reads three wins-including the 2016 Yonkers Trot en route to the Trotting Triple Crown-and a pair of seconds in five starts. He's come away with a pay envelope in 45 of those 48 starts. Marion Marauder enters the International 22 days between races, the last a come-from-behind win in Hoosier's $200,000 Caesars Trotting Classic. A year ago, Marion Marauder was runner-up in the International, some 5½ lengths behind stakes- and world-record-setting Twister Bi's 2:22.1 frolic for the mile-and-a-quarter distance. "He (Marion Marauder) was very good, but the winner was amazing," Zeron said. Last season's race did provide some teachable moments for Zeron. "I've driven a lot of the added-distance overnight races here (Yonkers), but that race was completely different," Zeron said. "In the overnights, guys want to find the pylons as quickly as possible to save ground. In the International, with the best trotters coming over, those drivers aren't looking for any shortcuts. They don't mind sitting outside. They won't leave anything to chance as far as getting locked in. "Honestly, if Marion Marauder wins (the International), it wouldn't mean as much to me personally as it would for people to say he's the best trotter in the world. Not bad for the one originally named Marion Monopoly, who sold for $37,000 at Lexington (2014) and, according to Zeron, "was so mentally not there when he started out, he'd get to the gate and try to bite the horse next to him. "Then, he figured it out. "The horse deserves all the credit," Zeron said. "Me, Mike and Paula, we're just along for the ride." by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, October 4, 2018-Yonkers Raceway has announced post times for Saturday, Oct. 13th, International Trot program. Race 1 - 1 PM Race 2 - 1:20 PM Race 3 - 1:40 PM Race 4 - 2 PM Race 5 - 2:20 PM Race 6 - 2:40 PM $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace Race 7 - 3:10 PM $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot (1¼ miles) Race 8 - 3:40 PM $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino (1¼ miles) Race 9 - 4:10 PM Open (Handicap?) Trot Race 10 - 4:40 PM Trot Race 11 - 5 PM Race 12 - 5:20 PM Note that races 7 and 8 are included in a special Pick 4 with Belmont Park, and post tines for the their stakes ($200,000 Pebbles and $100,000 Floral Park) shall be sent when available. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Friday, October 5, 2018- Those who wager through Empire City Bets are going to pleasantly rewarded for International Trot Day. With the approval of the New York State Gaming Commission, Empire City Bets shall offer a-wait for it-15 percent rebate for all wagers (save for place and show) made during the entire Yonkers Raceway card of Saturday afternoon, Oct. 13th. "It is our goal to showcase this day to everyone," Raceway COO Bob Galterio said. "Empire City Bets already offers the best rebates for our faithful Yonkers handicappers, so this is a way to reward them even more and invite all horseplayers to take a look at our terrific afternoon of racing." Please visit www.empirecitybets.com to sign up and for more information. The International Trot Day race schedule is as such... Race 1 - 1 PM Race 2 - 1:20 PM Race 3 - 1:40 PM Race 4 - 2 PM Race 5 - 2:20 PM Race 6 - 2:40 PM $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace Race 7 - 3:10 PM $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot (1¼ miles) Race 8 - 3:40 PM $1 million Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino (1¼ miles) Race 9 - 4:10 PM Open (Handicap?) Trot Race 10 - 4:40 PM Trot Race 11 - 5 PM Race 12 - 5:20 PM Note that races 7 and 8 are included in a special Pick 4 with Belmont Park, and post tines for the those stakes ($200,000 Pebbles and $100,000 Floral Park) and program pages shall be sent when available. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Wednesday, October 3, 2018-There has been a change in the cast of characters for the million-dollar Yonkers International Trot @ Empire City Casino. Dreammoko, who was to represent the Netherlands, has been sidelined with a sore throat and won't make the trip. In his stead, the fleet Canadian Will Take Charge has been chosen. For Will Take Charge, it's the culmination of a career season. The 5-year-old Kadabra gelding, owned by Mac Nichol of Burlington, Ontario, and trained by Jeff Gillis of Mississauga, Ont., has won nine of his 20 starts and $409,965. His 1:53.2 Yonkers win in mid-September matched the Raceway's track record for an aged trotting gelding, while his life-best 1:50.3 was taken on late May's $150,000 Maxie Lee Memorial Invitational at Harrah's Philly. "I spoke with Jeff (Gillis) and he was tickled to death," race secretary Steve Starr said. "The horse showed his guts when he won here, and we're happy he's coming back for this race." Canada now has a pair of entrants in the International, with Will Take Charge joining last season's runner-up, triple-millionaire Marion Marauder. The 10 world-class trotters set to contest the mile-and-a-quarter 40th International are... Arazi Boko (Italy) Ariana G (United States) Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden) Lionel (Norway) Marion Marauder (Canada) Pastore Bob (Sweden) Ringostarr Treb (Italy) Slide So Easy (Denmark) Up and Quick (France) Will Take Charge (Canada) First post for the special matinee program-which also includes the $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot and $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace-is 1 PM. For more information, please visit the International Trot's dedicated site, www.internationaltrot.com. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

YONKERS, N.Y. – The prestige and rich harness racing history of the International Trot can rear its head in many places. For Anders Ström, the race’s lineage materialized before him as he studied the yearling catalog of the recently concluded Arqana Trot Select Yearling Sale. Ström paused on hip no. 47, a colt out of Sirene de Mai, whose great, great, great grand dam, Une de Mai, along with her countless European feats, won the International Trot in 1969 and 1971.  “The race has seen many great winners, and I actually watched the 1969 edition on YouTube recently,” Ström said. “It was when French super mare Une de Mai beat Nevele Pride, as I was in the process of buying a Ready Cash yearling colt in Deauville from the Une de Mai maternal line.” Ström bought the colt for €170,000 and he will have a chance to make history of his own in this year’s renewal of the Yonkers International Trot. His stable, Stall Courant AB, will start Cruzado Dela Noche as a representative of Sweden in the $1 million stakes. “It would be (my) biggest win so far. Only Elitloppet, Prix d’Amérique, Hambletonian and the Swedish 4-year-old Derby can match it, in my book,” Ström said. “But this horse’s character makes it extra special. As he already has qualified as a sire in the Swedish system with high grades, a win here would boost his credentials for that as well. That would be very nice.” Ström bought Cruzado Dela Noche sight unseen out of the 2013 Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $28,000. The Pennsylvania-bred son of Muscle Massive out of the Credit Winner mare Alidade, then known by the name Arusa Hanover, looked the part, but it was something intangible that piqued Ström’s interest.  “I wasn’t at the sale because of business in Australia, but ‘Cruzado’ was one of five lower-priced yearlings that I bought on the back of advice from friends and agents who were at the sale inspecting horses,” Ström explained. “Cruzado was the one that had the extra special attitude which is why I renamed him with a name I had kept for a really good horse. The name comes from the Spiderman movie, when Peter Parker comes up with the idea for his suit.” Despite his early promise and standout spirit, Cruzado Dela Noche struggled to stay trotting in his 2- and 3-year-old campaigns; he made breaks in stride in 10 of his 28 races and qualifiers. Despite those setbacks, Cruzado Dela Noche finished third in the Peter Haughton Memorial and posted wins in a division of the International Stallion Stakes and a leg of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes as a freshman in Nancy Johansson’s stable. “He was slightly immature and whimsy to begin with, but tremendously talented,” Ström said. “We felt that he would mature over time, so we weren’t especially worried. Nancy and Marcus Johansson took good care of him in the early days which we are thankful for now that the horse is sound and makes a good career as an older trotter.” After a 3-year-old campaign that produced just two wins in 11 starts, Ström sent Cruzado Dela Noche across the Atlantic to trainer Stefan Melander and Courant Managing Director Sabine Kagebrant. The calculated move would allow Cruzado Dela Noche to take advantage of the 4-year-old stakes in Sweden and give him time to develop.  “We stake all our U.S. purchases to the rich 4-year-old program in Europe. It doesn’t cost much and they add a lot of purse money, so it is an easy business decision,” Ström explained. “Stefan Melander also has a great track record when it comes to the older American horse. “Melander’s training regime suits him perfect. He also has an ‘extra groom’ in Sabine Kagebrant, who has great experience with older star trotters, having worked with Stefan Melander, Björn Goop and Jörgen Westholm horses all over Europe,” Ström continued. “When Sabine is out of the office, she spends a lot of time with ‘Noche,’ makes him feel special and that works well for him.” At 4, Cruzado Dela Noche won the Group 1 Grosser Preis Von Deutschland and the Group 2 Norrlands Grand Prix. He also placed third in the Group 1 Sprinter Mästaren Final. At 5, Cruzado Dela Noche captured the Group 1 Copenhagen Cup. “He always does his best, I can think of only one or two races when he failed and there were good excuses,” Ström said. “One was in Elitloppet 2017, when he made a break at the gate in the elimination which otherwise likely would have given him the same trip as Resolve, who eventually was second in the final.  “That was hard to take. I think he could have matched Timoko on the day, he was in such good shape,” he continued. “But overall this horse gives us tremendous joy, just to see his attitude makes me wonder sometimes. He is so much more than just the average good racehorse.” Now a 6-year-old Cruzado Dela Noche has been lightly raced this season. The stallion was sixth in the Group 1 Olympiatravet Final April 28, third in the Copenhagen Cup May 13, scored his lone win this year in the listed Gösta Bergengrens Minneslopp May 30 before finishing fifth in the Group 1 Oslo Grand Prix. His short campaign was by design as Cruzado Dela Noche returned to the United States early to settle into a new chapter of his career. “We got invited in May and then we decided to give the horse the best preparation possible, with proper quarantine so he could get acclimatized to his new-old life in the U.S. Our dream race to target this season is the International Trot so we didn’t want to leave anything to chance,” Ström said.  “European races are run in a different way which isn’t ideal for ‘Cruzado.’ He likes the high, even pace better, which is why we staked him for the fall season in the U.S.A. just in case,” he continued. “Any which way, he raced really good in the spring, so we felt he was going upwards in form all the time.” Cruzado Dela Noche reemerged in a qualifier at Pocono Downs September 12 for trainer Marcus Melander. He led wire-to-wire in 1:55.2. The stallion got another trial under his belt at the same venue September 26, crossing the wire first in 1:54.2. “He has done quarantine, then two light qualifiers at Pocono, which he made look very easy,” Ström said. “He likes his life at Marcus Melander’s farm and he will get another sharper workout, like an ‘eye-opener,’ a few days before the race which I believe will be enough to take him to top form.” Cruzado Dela Noche, who will pair with driver Brian Sears for the first time in the International, will face nine rivals: Arazi Boko (Italy), Ariana G (United States), Dreammoko (Netherlands), Lionel (Norway), Marion Marauder (Canada), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Ringostarr Treb (Italy), Slide So Easy (Denmark), and Up And Quick (France). Although the field is one of the deepest in recent memory, Ström likes his chances. “I think this year’s field is absolutely fantastic, given the challenge with trans-Atlantic transport of international horses. All races in this class are tough. But ‘Noche’ has beaten Twister Bi, last year’s winner, fair and square before, from second-over in a Swedish record time over the same distance as the International Trot, on a slow five-eighths-mile track. That says he can compete with anyone on the day,” Ström said. “Now I hope Brian Sears up first time will give him an extra gear as well. From posts one to five he is a real contender, otherwise a decent chance to show anyway. I respect the competition and I believe the winner will be the horse that is best on the day and has racing luck.” The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is slated for Saturday, October 13 at Yonkers Raceway. The card will also feature a pair of $250,000 invitationals, the Harry Harvey Trot and Dan Rooney Pace. For more information on the event and its participants, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Brandon Valvo, for the SOA of NY

The ladies have been champions of women's rights to win in the famed International Trot, indelibly etching their names among the greatest performers in the history of the global classic.   The American standouts, two-time winner Delmonica Hanover and Classical Way; and the French flag-carriers Une de Mai and Roquepine, both two-time titlists. The names ring true to rank among the greatest of International Trot champions. Canadian stalwarts Armbro Flight and Fresh Yankee, are part of that history, too. These mares dominated the boys, an assault on the best male trotters in the world by winning six in a row and eight of nine International titles from 1966-74, before the six-year gap to Classical Way in 1980. Upon the move of the International to Yonkers Raceway in 1988, Kit Lobell (1989) and Peace Corps (1991) added their signatures to the ladies tour de force. This sets the stage for this year's United States flag-carrier Ariana G., the four-year-old mare who shoulders the hopes of America in the $1 million Yonkers International Trot on Saturday afternoon, October 13th. The millionaire twice-over has 26 career victories in 37 starts, good for a 70 % win percentage. Owned by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, the homebred daughter of Muscles Yankee and grand-daughter of Muscles Yankee comes off a track-record (1:52.1) effort in the Dayton Trotting Derby, beating the boys, on September 27th with catch-driver Brian Sears in the bike for trainer Jimmy Takter. It was her fifth win in 11 seasonal starts to boost her career earnings to a loft $2,367.709. Empire City Casino's historic oval at Yonkers Raceway becomes the 11th venue where Ariana G has raced, but her first attempt on the half-miler. She's a two-time Breeders Crown champ, two-time Dan Patch Award recipient, and a Hambletonian Oaks victory leading her gaudy resume. Now, she prepares to meet the elite trotters in the world. As Sinatra musically put it: "That's why the lady is a champ," and "luck be a lady, tonight." Ariana G. will try to beat the boys again while carrying the U.S.A. flag on October 13th. Most recently, since the return of the Yonkers International following a 20-year hiatus, the mares Hannelore Hanover (2016) and Bee A Magician (2015) were both thwarted in their attempts to join the ladies brigade of champions. More history: The powerful, French flag-carrier Ideal du Gazeau, with his white blaze and an amazing burst of speed, was the only three-time International champion under the reins of Eugene Lefevre. Holding his head high in a unique and exciting trotting style, Ideal du Gazeau pulled off the Pat Riley-esque "Three-peat" consecutively in 1981, '82 and '83, after finishing second to the American mare Classical Way (John Simpson, Jr.) in his debut in 1980. Legendary U.S.A. standard-bearers, the gelding Su Mac Lad (1961 and '63/Stanley Dancer) and the Del Miller-trained mare Delmonica Hanover (1973-74/Johnny Chapman), and the French champions Roquepine (1967-68) and Un de Mai (1969 and '71), both mares from France driven by JeanRene Gougeon, were the quartet of two-time International titlists during the late sixties and early seventies. Mares won six in a row and eight of nine International titles from 1967-74. Speedy Crown, driven by Howard Beissinger, interrupted the distaff dominance in 1972. The alphabetical field for the mile-and-a-quarter International Trot, with country of representation... Arazi Boko (Italy) Ariana G (United States) Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden) Dreammoko (Netherlands) Lionel (Norway) Marion Marauder (Canada) Pastore Bob (Sweden) Ringostarr Treb (Italy) Slide So Easy (Denmark) Up and Quick (France) By John Cirillo, for Yonkers International Trot

YONKERS, N.Y. – The sun inched toward the horizon in the western Paris skies around 4:30 p.m. January 25, 2015, casting a soft golden glow over harness racing's Hippodrome de Vincennes. The crystal horse trophy Philippe Delon cradled in his arms captured the rays and it too gleamed in a golden hue as Delon raised it over his head. From atop the podium in the winner’s enclosure, Delon smiled as he looked into the stands at the thousands of fans who cheered, waved flags, and smiled back at him before lowering the prize back into his arms, staring down at it in disbelief.  Moments earlier, Delon watched as his homebred star Up And Quick streaked into the stretch with the lead in the Grand Prix d’Amérique. After grinding leader Mosaique Face into submission, Up And Quick kicked away from late threat Voltigeur de Myrt. Ahead by 3 lengths nearing the finish, driver Jean-Michel Bazire took both lines in his left hand, blew a kiss with his right, and turned to the crowd to give a thumbs up as he and Up And Quick passed the finish. In that moment, Up And Quick rose to the top of the trotting world. The Prix d’Amérique was the third Group 1 win of the Buvetier d'Aunou son’s career after taking the Critérium des Five Ans in 2013 and the Grand Prix de Paris in 2014. The victory improved on Up And Quick’s second-place effort to Maharajah the year before. Nearly four years later, the curtain is about to close on the final act of Up And Quick’s racing career and Delon hopes his trotter can deliver one more thrill on the world’s stage. Up And Quick will reach the mandatory retirement age in France when he turns 11 in 2019 and will no longer be able to target France’s biggest trotting spectacle. Instead, Delon set his sights on New York, sending his star across the Atlantic to compete in the $1 million Yonkers International Trot. The representative of France would be the first Prix d’Amérique winner since Lutin d'Isigny in 1985 to win the International Trot. “He’s given us everything a breeder and an owner can dream of,” Delon said. “We would love to see him finishing his last season with a bang in New York.” Up And Quick’s journey to the Yonkers International Trot has been rife with struggles. Although he scored a fourth Group 1 in the 2015 Grand Prix de Paris, Up And Quick’s attempt to defend his Prix d’Amérique title in 2016 proved disastrous. After finishing fourth in the Prix de Bourgogne and 10th in the Prix de Belgique, Up And Quick was up the track when 14th in the Prix d’Amérique after attending the pace. He pulled up with a fractured ilium, one of three bones that comprise a horse’s hip. "As after every major race, a battery of tests were conducted and now the verdict is in: a fracture of the ilium was detected,” Delon’s Écurie Quick Star posted on it’s website after the race. “It is very surprising that Up And Quick could deliver such a beautiful race. He must be a brave and sacred competitor to trot as he did when he was injured.” Although he did not require surgery, Up And Quick needed months of stall rest and would not compete again until returning a winner in the Grand Prix de Noël at Hippodrome de Wallonie December 29, 2016. He didn’t make it back to the French classics, but Up And Quick proved himself competitive on the track, winning a pair of Group 2 races in 2017, the Critérium de Vitesse de Basse-Normandie at Argentan April 29, 2017 and the Prix de la Communauté de Communes Thiérache du Centre at La Capelle July 9. Soon though, Up And Quick would suffer another setback. “He suffered from a small fracture in July last year and had to stay two months in his (stall). Before that, he’d broken a hip bone and had to stay four months locked in,” Delon said. “It takes a real champion to come back the way he did after that. Jean-Michel Bazire said that’s the true mark of a wonder horse, coming back to do what he does best.” After covering 82 mares in the winter, Up And Quick returned to the track again in March and successfully defended his title in the Critérium de Vitesse de Basse-Normandie, posting a nose win over Un Mec d’Héripré and Ave Avis in a scrambling finish. Although he rides a nine-race losing streak into the Yonkers International Trot, the €2.1-million earner finished third in an elimination of the Elitlopp, second in the Group 1 Hugo Åbergs Memorial, and third in the Group 2 Grand Prix du Département des Alpes-Maritimes.  Up And Quick was fifth last time out in the Group 1 UET Trotting Masters Series Final September 16 after getting pinned inside three back along the pylons in the 12-horse field. Facing a wall of horses in the stretch, Up And Quick finished 3 ¾ lengths behind Propulsion. Delon chalked it up to a tactical mistake; driver Wim Paal chose to follow Pastore Bob and expected a pocket trip behind the speedy rival, but ended up buried at the inside instead. “We chose the wrong leader. Wim Paal and I thought Pastore Bob was the one to follow, but he got us nowhere,” Delon said. “Propulsion was the one to beat and we never had a live chance. Just throw that race away. The horse is absolutely fine. He loves to work and to race. That’s what kept him going all these years despite a few health issues that belong to the past now.” Since the Trotting Masters Final, Up And Quick has prepared for the Yonkers International Trot at Haras De Sassy, about 130 miles west of Paris. His days are easy at the stud farm with trainer Antoine Lhérété. Delon fears the quiet lifestyle can’t be replicated at Yonkers. “He’s out all day in his paddock. He loves it. He works in the pool, too. He only gets in his (stall) at night,” Delon said. “That was a bit of a problem for us because he won’t be able to relax like that while staying at Yonkers. That’s my main concern today. At least he’ll be able to get out twice a day, but that’s not exactly the same. I hope they will lodge him in a good (stall) because like Dreammoko, he’s a stud, full of energy.” Up And Quick will face nine rivals in the International: Arazi Boko (Italy), Ariana G (United States), Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden), Dreammoko (Netherlands), Lionel (Norway), Marion Marauder (Canada), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Ringostarr Treb (Italy), Slide So Easy (Denmark). The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is slated for Saturday, October 13 at Yonkers Raceway. The card will also feature a pair of $250,000 invitationals, the Harry Harvey Trot and Dan Rooney Pace. For more information on the event and its participants, visit www.internationaltrot.com. By Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY with Manu Roussel

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