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Three divisions of $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings highlighted the 14-race harness racing card at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, May 28 and the sophomore colts opened their series in impressive fashion. Matrix of Luck, the Hoosier state's two-year-old pacing colt champion, returned to his winnings ways to score in 1:50.3, the fastest division of the evening. With Mike Peterson at the lines, Matrix of Luck protected his rail position and was sent away from the gate firing through an opening panel in :27. Mgsperkg Bluegrass and Tyler Smith grabbed a pocket seat while Downthehighwy and Jason Dillander were next in line third. Matrix of Luck went uncontested through splits of :55.1 and 1:23.1 but saved his best for last. As the field turned for home, Uncmprmising Z Tam and LeWayne Miller were the first to commit to the outer flow and taking aim at the leader. Mgsperkg Bluegrass tipped from the pocket but Matrix of Luck was too strong. Using a :27.2 final quarter, Matrix of Luck finished four lengths to the good over Mgsperkg Bluegrass and Uncmprmsing Z Tam. Owned by Brian Carsey, John McGill, and Debbie Cullipher, Matrix of Luck scored the first win of his three-year-old season from two starts and eighth lifetime win. Trained by Roger Cullipher, the son of Rockin Image-My Taylor's Maid also established a new lifetime mark with the win. In the next division, Bourbon Chase recorded his first stakes victory to remain perfect in three starts this season, scoring tonight in 1:51.2. Driven and trained by Dan Shetler, Bourbon Chase made his game winning move down the backside and used a :27.2 final quarter to secure the win over Shocking Image and Trace Tetrick. The homebred son of Palone Ranger-Stonebridge Beauty was unraced at two but has won all three of his lifetime outings at three. Owned by Dan Shelter and Kristin Shetler, Bourbon Chase has now earned $20,500 lifetime. Ville Valo and Ricky Macomber Jr. turned in a gritty, front-running effort to take the third split of the stakes action in 1:51.2. It was the second consecutive victory for the Ron Burke trainee who also established a new lifetime mark with the win. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, and P. Collura, Ville Valo has now won three of seven seasonal starts while bankrolling $22,310 in 2016. The gelded son of Real Desire-Pleasantville has now won six of 17 career outings. Each of the divisional winners from the three Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations earned a spot in the first of five $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings slated for June 4 at Hoosier Park. The 2016 Indiana Sires Stakes program will feature five legs throughout the season, and from each leg, the top 20 horses will return to compete in a final and consolation. The stakes program will culminate with the top ten horses from each of the previous finals returning to compete in a $200,000 Super Final on October 15 at Hoosier Park. Live racing will return to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, May 31 with a 14-race card. The 160-day, all harness racing meet will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:45 p.m. Emily Gaskin

ANDERSON, Ind.-May 29, 2015 - Allie Labrook and harness racing driver, trainer Dan Shetler found the winner's circle for the second consecutive time at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino after turning in a sharp effort to capture the $21,000 Invitational Trot on Friday, May 29. Using her customary late-surging tactics, Allie Labrook rallied gamely in the stretch to stop the timer in 1:52.3. The 1:52.3 clocking was just a few ticks off the overall trotting track record at Hoosier Park, a 1:52 mark she established in her last outing. Leaving from post seven, Allie Labrook was unhurried from the gate and settled along the rail in seventh while Darrell Wright sent last week's winner, Penn, away from the gate firing. Penn reached the front through a brisk opening quarter in :27.3 but was quickly joined on the outside by Natural Herbie and Verlin Yoder who were unable to find a spot along the rail. The vigorous pace continued as Penn reluctantly yielded the lead to Natural Herbie at the second station in :55.3. Unable to wait any longer, Shetler tipped Allie Labrook to the outside to begin their first-over journey approaching the final turn. Natural Herbie continued to call the shots through the three-quarter clocking in 1:24 and looked strong on the front as the field turned for home. Natural Herbie was able to fend off the pocket-sitting Penn but Allie Labrook was looming large in the background. Using a :28 final quarter, Allie Labrook dug in gamely to track down the leaders and finish two lengths in front of Penn. Natural Herbie held on for the third place finish. Sent off as the public's third choice, Allie Labrook returned $6.60 at the betting window. "She gives 100% every time she's on the track," Shetler noted after the victory. "She's getting better with every start and I still think there is some room for improvement with her. She's staked all over the country and we'll take it race by race to decide her schedule. She's just the nicest mare to drive and to be around." The five-year-old daughter of Here Comes Herbie-Allie Jane was making just her fourth start of the season after a stellar campaign in 2014 where she bankrolled $119, 157 and won 13 of 17 starts. Owned by Sawgrass Farms, Allie Labrook has now won 18 of 28 outings while amassing $165,984 lifetime. Allie Labrook has been staked outside of Indiana for her five-year-old campaign and will be pointed to the Miss Versatility Series for her next stakes engagement. On the pacing side of things, Montenegro and Jason Dillander used a front-running effort to score a decisive 1:51.2 victory in the Fillies and Mares Invitational Pace. Montenegro was able to hold off the heavy betting favorite, Color's A Virgin and Trace Tetrick, late in the lane to score her third win of the season. Trained by Jeff Cullipher, the seven-year-old Camluck mare has now won 31 of 146 lifetime outings and established a new seasonal mark with the win. Owned by Randall Bendis and Thomas Pollack, Montenegro has earned $55,635 this season and sports a lifetime bankroll of $551,164. Live racing continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, May 30 with a stakes filled 14-race card. Saturday's program will feature the first round of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for the three-year-old competitors. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., the live racing schedule at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 14. Emily Gaskin

ANDERSON, Ind.-May 9, 2015 - Allie Labrook, with harness racing trainer, driver Dan Shetler at the lines, re-established the track record for older trotting mares at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, May 9 when she powered home a winner in 1:52 in the featured event of the evening. Notching her first win of the season, Allie Labrook broke her previous record of 1:53.1, a mark she established on October 18, 2014. The 1:52 victory marks the first track record that has been lowered over Hoosier Park's seven-eighths mile oval in 2015. Leaving from post five in a talented group of nine, Allie Labrook left just enough to get early position along the rail in fifth while Darrell Wright sent last week's winner, Penn, away from the gate firing from post nine. Penn reached the front through a brisk opening quarter in :26.4 but was quickly joined on the outside by Lady Blitz and Verlin Yoder who were unable to find a spot along the rail. Lady Blitz continued to apply pressure to the outside and had reached the leader's wheel at the second station in :55.4. Captain John Henry and Ross Leonard benefitted from a pocket trip while Allie Labrook sat patiently next along the pylons in fourth. As the field approached the final turn, Shelter was unable to wait any longer and tipped Allie Labrook to the outside grabbing a second over spot behind Lady Blitz. With the top pair still battling, Shetler tipped Allie Labrook three-wide around a tiring Lady Blitz at the three-quarter clocking in 1:24.3. As the field turned for home, Allie Labrook and Penn were stride for stride and the race to the wire was on. Penn continued to rally but Allie Labrook wasn't finished. Shetler asked his mare for mare and she used a :27.1 final panel to finish a length in front of Penn. Captain John Henry used a ground saving trip to hold on for third place honors. As the 8-5 favorite, Allie Labrook returned $5.40 at the window. "I knew I wanted to be closer to the pace this week," Shetler noted after the victory. "She was loaded with trot when I tipped her three-wide and I knew turning for home she was going to be good. She's as nice of a mare as anyone could have. I've always known she could trot that kind of speed." The five-year-old daughter of Here Comes Herbie-Allie Jane was making just her third start of the season after a stellar campaign in 2014 where she bankrolled $119, 157 and won 13 of 17 starts. Owned by Sawgrass Farms, Allie Labrook has now won 17 of 27 outings while amassing $155, 487 lifetime. Allie Labrook will be pointed to the Miss Versatility Series at Mohawk Raceway for her next engagement. Live racing will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, May 12 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., the live racing schedule will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 14, 2015. Emily Gaskin Racing Commentator, Publicist and Marketing Specialist

The year 1981 was in the hey-days of harness racing at Sportsman’s Park, the center-piece track of the Chicago circuit. There were a number of “firsts” taking place during that summer at the five-eighths mile track in Cicero, Illinois, The first $2 million handle on a single Illinois harness racing card was recorded on July 11 when 20,047 patrons, the largest crowd of the 1981 Chicago harness racing season, wagered $2,069,079 on track on a 10-race program. That evening was also the first time that all 10 races on a Chicago circuit card were timed in 2:00 or faster highlighted by Osborne’s First and Doug Hamilton teaming up for a world record mile of 1:55.2 for an aged pacer on a five-eighths track in that night’s Free For All.. The first Sunday program in Sportsman’s Park history was held on May 17 with Artie’s Dream (Shelly Goudreau) taking the $70,000 American National 3-Year-Old Pace in 1:58. Opening Night, eight days earlier, saw Burgomeister (see photo) and his National Hall of Fame trainer-driver Billy Haughton, follow his victory in the prestigious Hambletonian, with a one and ½ length triumph in the $61,510 American National Maturity Trot with a 2:03.3 mile. Also in the summer of 1981 Banker Barker (Mike Zeller) would come on with a mighty rush to take the American National 3-Year-Old Trot in 2:00.3. The $100,450 American National Maturity Pace was annexed by Bandelier and driver Walter Paisley in 1:56.3. Eugene Waszak’s Madame Butterfilly, the second longest shot on the board, won that season’s $56,750 Violet Stakes. The Roger Davino Stable’s Whizzer R White, driven by Dave Magee, set a track record for a 2-year-old pacer with a 1:59.1 clocking in the July 21 Poplar Byrd stake, The 3-year-old ICF star that summer was the Dan Shetler Stable’s Coffee Dan, a son of Egyptian Dancer who went unraced as a freshman. Coffee Dan went 9-for-12 in his first season of racing for his then Illinois owners George Barounes, Robert Parrish, 809 Corporation and Shetler. Coffee Dan captured the $77,500 Cardinal Final and later the $120,800 Langley on July 3 (see picture) where he defeated Foolish Eyes (Jim Curran) with in 1:58 flat. Coffee Dan would earn $158,349 that year. Shetler also drove the winner of the $60,000 Midwest Derby Final when Tarport Boss uncorked a big move in the stretch. Meanwhile Royce lived up to his billing by winning the $60,000 U.S. Pacing Championship Final in mid-August. Wieker’s Del, driven by Delvin Insko, took advantage of a great trip and notched the $200,000 Orange and Blue Stake, at that time the richest race for 2-year-old ICF pacers. Sportsman’s on-track attendance and handle figures for the summer of 1981were extraordinary, to say the least. The average nightly attendance was 13,196 while the handle nightly averaged a robust $1,627,058. Sadly those glory days of Illinois harness racing are long-gone. By Mike Paradise The Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association

The prestigious American National Stakes returned to Balmoral Park on Wednesday night with a pair of trotting events for two-year-olds sharing top billing on the nine-race program. The ladies opened the action with a compact field of six diagonally gaited specialists battling for a purse of $57,200. Returning to the scene of her lone victory to date was just what the doctor ordered for Homer Hochstetler and Robert Buddig's Persuasive Look as the filly reported home with a half-length victory in a career best of 1:58.0 for driver Casey Leonard. Content to sit near the back of the pack in fifth as heavy favorite Fox Valley Yoko (John De Long) cruised through splits of 29.2, 58.3 & 1:28.3 Leonard finally put the daughter of Powerful Emotion--Black N Bluegenes into contention as the field neared the top of the stretch. "They were going fast enough for my liking so I wasn't concerned about being back there," said the patient Leonard. "I had plenty of horse left and I managed to pick up some very good cover to bring us to the top of the lane so it worked out perfectly." Gradually starting to reel in a leg weary Fox Valley Yoko and the pocket sitting Jazzie Mermaid (Dave Magee) with a sixteenth of a mile to go, the Homer Hochstetler trained miss trotted by that pair in the closing yards in what looked like a replay of her big Fox Valley Flan Stake win here in late July. Jazzie Mermaid turned in a solid effort to finish second while Fox Valley Yoko held on for third. Sent off as the third choice in the wagering Persuasive Look returned $10.20, $5.20 & $2.20 while running her career slate to 2-2-3 in 7 seven starts with earnings of $66,374. Next up were the colts and geldings as a field of eight youngsters faced the starting gate with a purse of $73,000 on the line. Despite an eventful journey K R Breeding & Robert Rudolph's Iron prevailed by a hard fought head in 1:58.1 for driver Domenico Cecere. Hustled to the front from post four by Cecere the royally bred son of Cantab Hall-Ivory Lindy strolled through an opening quarter in 29.3. After allowing a hard charging SS Poseidon (Dan Shetler) to grab command on the backside a headstrong Iron was nearly climbing into the bike with Shetler as the field reached the half-mile mark in 59.0. "Things just kind of came to a very quick stop out there," said a relieved Cecere. "We were very lucky that my horse didn't run or worse yet have an accident." Things straightened themselves out heading around the far turn with SS Poseidon proceeding to lead the field past the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:29.1. Through the lane SS Poseidon continued to show the way as Cecere swung to the outside with Iron. That allowed a locked a loaded KY Lucky (John De Long) to move through in the passing lane, making for a thrilling three-horse stretch duel. With the three trotters spread out across the track Iron regained his best stride in the closing yards getting up the final strides to get his first win in his second career start. KY Lucky and SS Poseidon wound up in a dead-heat for second behind the victor. After the win a very happy Cecere explained his strategy in the lane. "My horse is still very green but he's a very talented horse as well," he said. "He's never been in the passing lane so I didn't want to take a chance at going down there with him which is why I swung outside. It took him a little bit to get his momentum going again but I didn't really urge him until the very end and he was just super tonight." After a third place finish in his division of the Kindergarten Stake at the Red Mile Iron was a bit overlooked in the wagering returning $13.00, $4.80 & $4.00 while moving his bankroll to $36,240. by Tom Kelley, for Balmoral Park  

Hall of Famer Dave Magee, the 60-year-old reinsman joined some very elite company on Saturday night, eclipsing the $100,000,000 million mark in career earnings. The Big Rock, Illinois native who has more than 11,700 victories, achieved the milestone with a third place finish behind Real Or Magic in Saturday's $15,000 Invitational-Handicap, making him only the 17th driver in the history of the sport to reach the $100,000,000 mark. The 2014 Hanover Stakes season kicked off on Saturday, June 7th at BalmoralPark as a pair of events for diagonally gaited sophomores shared top billing on the 13-race program.   A full field of 10 three-year-old trotting colts started the action in race four as they battled for a purse of $25,900. Fresh off back to back stakes scores over state-bred competition here at Balmoral, Mike Brink and Loren Tournear's Tour Hall made it three in a row as he powered to a four-length victory in a career best of 1:56.0 for driver Dave Magee.   Pointed right for the front from post position four, the altered son of American Native--Broadway And Fifth grabbed command of the proceedings midway around the first turn leading the field through an opening quarter in 29.4.   Pressure came on the backside as Mac Kemp (Dean Magee) rolled up first over battling the pace-setter through middle splits of 59.3 & 1:28.2.   After putting away that bid the Mike Brink trainee kept the remainder of the field at bay with a sharp 27.3 final panel to notch his eighth lifetime victory. Another Illinois bred, Fox Valley Veto (John De Long) rallied from far back to get the runner-up check while Red Solo Cup (Robert Smolin) finished third.   With the win, Tour Hall who returned $8.40, $4.00 & $2.80, now boasts a record of eight wins, four seconds and one third in 18 career starts with earnings of $122,801.   Another full field was sent postward in race six as 10 fillies slugged it out for a purse of $24,400. This time it was an Indiana invader who toted home top honors as Dan & Jo Anne Shetler's homebred DiamondPeak posted a 2 ¾ length victory in wire to wire fashion for her co-owner, trainer and driver Dan Shetler.   Working hard to get to the front in 28.3 from post position five, the daughter of Yankee Glide--Minibar was then able to catch a breather as Shetler guided her through leisurely middle splits of 58.2 & 1:27.3.   The lightly raced bay was never seriously threatened the rest of the way as she trotted home in 28.1 to secure her second win in just five lifetime starts. Pray With Me (Dale Hiteman) overcame a tough first over journey from post 10 to be the bridesmaid while Bailey's Wish (Dave Magee) wound up third after a pocket sitting journey.   Despite the lack of experience DiamondPeak drew plenty of attention for the betting public returning just $4.00, $2.80 & $3.00 while upping her bankroll to $15,559.   by Tom Kelley, for Balmoral Park        

Delaware, OH --- All roads led to Ohio as owners and trainers from 29 states, Canada, and Europe flocked to the Delaware County Fairgrounds for the 66th annual Fall Blooded Horse Sale.  Opening day featured nearly 25% of Ohio’s total yearling crop, along with over 100 Indiana-breds and a large number of Pennsylvania, Ontario, and New York breds. The strong catalogue of slots enhanced sire stakes eligibles drove prices to a record high. The next three days contained 198 2-year-olds, 297 3-year-olds, 87 weanlings and hundreds of raceway horses and broodmares.       The top priced yearling and ultimate sale topper was an Always A Virgin sister to Indiana champion Color’s A Virgin. Brown Color was purchased from the Emerald Highlands consignment by Dan Shetler for $43,000.   Next in line was an Ohio-bred Feelin Friskie colt from the Midland Acres consignment purchased by Burke Racing Stable LLC for $42,000.  Spring Haven Farm sold a Total Truth brother to top Indiana colt Totally Kissed for $37,000 and Walnut Hall Ltd sold an Ontario bred Deweycheatumnhowe filly for $32,000. Broodmares were led by the young Andover Hall prospect, Ladyfinger 3,1:59.2f, that was purchased by Black Creek Farm in Indiana for $28,000 from Marty Wollam. Hoosier Standardbred Farm stepped up at $15,000 for Sexpot Hall in foal to Deweycheatunmhowe from the Walnut Hall Ltd consignment.  That farm also provided the top weanlings, a Conway Hall filly from the family of two $1 million earners and a Groton Hall half-brother to two 1:54 trotters, that each brought $20,000. Competitive racehorses are always in demand and five of them shared the spotlight at $20,000 each.  Nidaros, a Muscle Yankee non-winners of two consigned by Kjell Magne Andersen, was purchased by Jeff Clark of Maryland. Indiana Sires competitor, Fancy Colt, left Emerald Highlands Farm on a bid from Red Shaw in Ohio. Competitive $20,000 claimer Darth Quaider was purchased by Steve Richard of Massachusetts. The rugged raceway mare Athleticlyinclined, with $278,575 lifetime earnings, was picked up by John Mungillo of New York from Burke Racing Stable LLC. And Dan Kennedy added the Open pacer Lost Jewels to his racehorses in preparation for the December opening of Hard Rock Racino Northfield Park. Complete sale results are available at www.bloodedhorse.com.  The Blooded Horse Sale Company holds quarterly mixed sales at the home of the Little Brown Jug in Delaware, Ohio The next sale is February 10-11, 2014.  Entries close around January 10. by Dot Morgan for Blooded Horse Sale

The last yearling sale of the season drew a record crowd for the first day of the 66th Annual Fall Blooded Horse Sale.  Monday featured 346 yearlings including nearly 25% of the Ohio crop and 120 Indiana breds. There were also large numbers of Ontario, Pennsylvania, and New York breds along with a handful of very scarce Kentucky breds. The strong catalogue of slots enhanced sires stakes eligibles drove prices to a record high. An Always A Virgin filly, Brown Color, topped the day at $43,000.  Consigned by Emerald Highlands Farm the full sister to 2013 Indiana Champion Color’s A Virgin was purchased by Dan Shetler. Midland Acres brought a large consignment of Ohio breds by the leading sires Feelin Friskie and Chip Chip Hooray.  Among those, Over Friskie, was purchased by Burke Racing Stable LLC for $42,000, Ed Telle signed the ticket on Feelin Shady for 34,000, and Lantern’s Chip went to Rich Lombardo for $32,000.  The Spring Haven Farm consignment was led by a Total Truth brother to the top Indiana colt Totally Kissed at $37,000 and the Feelin Friskie filly Friskie Buckeye at $36,000, purchased by Kirk Nichols and Bruce Soulsby, respectively. Charisma Hall, a gorgeous Deweycheatumnhowe filly, was purchased by Michael Andrew of Maine from the Walnut Hall Ltd consignment for $32,000. The Walnut Hall Ltd reduction also features a large, attractive group of weanlings and in foal mares on Wednesday. The Blooded Horse Sale continues Tuesday through Thursday with over 1100 horses, including 198 two year olds, 297 three year olds, 87 weanlings and hundreds of raceway horses and broodmares. The catalogue and sale results are available online at www.bloodedhorse.com. by Jerry Haws for Blooded Horse Sale  

ANDERSON, Ind.-October 11, 2013-Mystical Victress made her Hoosier Park debut a winning one as she took top honors and produced a slight upset in the featured event, a $32,000 Invitational pace for fillies and mares, at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, October 11. Shipping in from Balmoral Park, Mystical Victress, with Lewayne Miller at the lines, used a sharp front running effort to score her ninth win of the season with a final time of 1:51.4. As the gate closed, Sam Widger and American Girl made a quick jump on their rivals leaving alertly from post four and grabbed the early lead through the opening quarter in :26.3. Montenegro and Ricky Macomber Jr. found a spot along the rail in second while Mystical Victress was unable to find position along the rail and pressed on for the front. Betterluvnexttime and Tyler Smith were also caught on the outside and pressed on for a better position. Mystical Victress cleared to the front through the half mile time in :55.2 but was quickly challenged on the outside by Betterluvnexttime. The top pair continued to battle it out through the three-quarter clocking in 1:23.3 as the rest of the field closed in. Mystical Victress battled gamely to put away Betterluvnexttime and was able to hold off a late charge from Radar Contact and Dan Shetler late in the lane to score the victory. Radar Contact got up for the second place finish while Montenegro rounded out the trifecta. Mystical Victress pulled the slight upset and returned $13.20 to her backers at the windows. Trained by Erv Miller, Mystical Victress scored her ninth win from 27 seasonal outings as she pushed her seasonal bankroll over the $150,000 mark for her connections of Mystical Marker Farms and Peggy Hood. The six-year-old daughter of Sportsmaster is approaching the $1 million mark as she sports a career bankroll of $818,373. It was a four win night for driver Lewayne Miller on the 14-race card. He teamed up with trainer Erv Miller to find the winner's circle three other times on the evening and was also victorious with Walter Haynes' I'm Gracies Wigwam in Indiana Silver Sire Stakes action earlier on the card. Live racing continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, October 12 at its' regularly scheduled post time of 5:30 p.m. The 160 day, all harness racing meet with follow a Tuesday-Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 9. Emily Gaskin

ANDERSON, Ind.—August 10, 2013—Hoosier Park’s track surface continues to sizzle as track records continue to fall this season. The 14-race card on Saturday, August 10 was highlighted by two track record performances in the second round of the $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire Stakes action. For the third time in one week, the track record was lowered over Hoosier Park’s seven-eighths mile oval, marking the eleventh track record that has been re-established this season. Night Pro became Indiana’s newest sub 1:50 pacer and Hoosier Park’s newest track record holder after he powered home a winner in 1:49 in the second round of the $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire Stakes for three-year-old pacing colts and gelding. With Pete Wrenn at the lines, Night Pro used a perfect pocket trip to establish a new lifetime best mark and lower the track record by a full second. The previous track record for three-year-old pacing colts was 1:50.0, a mark set by Custard The Dragon and driver Montrell Teague in the Hoosier Cup on June 25, 2011. Using a :26.2 final quarter, Night Pro was able to wear down the tiring leader, Sweet Talkin Satin, late in the stretch to finish a nose in front. Right Touch and Ray Paver also staged a big rally late in the lane but only managed to finish second while Sweet Talkin Satin and Trace Tetrick held on for third.  As the heavy betting favorite, Night Pro returned $3.60 at the window. Scoring his eleventh win of the season, the sophomore colt was also victorious in the $200,000 Indiana Sire Stakes championship at Hoosier Park on Saturday, July 20. Unraced at two, Night Pro is trained and owned by Dale Decker of Temperance, MI. A $14,000 yearling purchase, the son of Pro Bono Best is the first foal from World Champion, Midnight Jewel. Night Pro has now won 11 of 14 lifetime starts while amassing over $180,000. Lady Blitz followed suit in her division of the $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies when she stormed home a winner in 1:54.2. With Verlin Yoder at the lines, Lady Blitz used a sharp, front running score to establish a new lifetime best mark and notch her sixth win of the season. Using a :28.3 final panel, Lady Blitz was able to hold off a late surge from the pocket sitting Playful Innocence to win by four lengths. Playful Innocence and Dan Shetler finished second while Express Justice rallied gamely to round out the trifecta. The previous track record of 1:55.2 was established by Playful Innocence and Dan Shetler just one month ago in the first round of the Indiana Gold Sire Stakes action for three-year-old trotting fillies. Trained, owned and driven by Verlin Yoder, Lady Blitz has now won six of ten lifetime starts while bankrolling over $150,000. Sired by Keystone Blitz, the sophomore filly has won seven of 22 lifetime outings. Live racing resumes at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, August 13 with a daily post time of 5:30 p.m. Live racing will follow a Tuesday-Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 9.

ANDERSON, Ind.-July 20, 2013-Hoosier Park Racing & Casino highlighted their 20th season of live Standardbred racing with the annual Hoosier Champions night in front of a packed house on Saturday, July 20. Four new Indiana Sire Stakes champions were crowned on the evening that featured a 14-race card boasting purses over the $1 million mark. The Anderson track played host to four $200,000 Indiana Sire Stakes finals for three-year-old trotters and pacers, all of which produced blanket finishes. It was Night Pro and Jason Dillander who stole the show in a track record equaling performance in the $200,000 Indiana Sire Stakes final for three-year-old colt pacers with a final time of 1:50. As the heavy betting favorite, Night Pro left the gate alertly from post seven and made every call a winning one. Sweet Talkin Satin and Trace Tetrick would make Night Pro work for his position as they also left alertly before settling along the rail in second. Using a :27.3 final panel, Night Pro powered home to finish a length in front of a hard charging Right Touch and Ray Paver. Sweet Talkin Satin held on gamely for the third place finish. Trained by Dale Decker, Night Pro notched the tenth win of his sophomore season from 12 seasonal outings. Unraced at two, the three-year-old colt established a new lifetime best while sending his career bankroll over the $175,000 mark for owner Dale Decker. The million dollar night opened with the first $200,000 final for three-year-old trotting fillies and it was Playful Innocence and driver Dan Shetler who were victorious in 1:56.1. Playful Innocence was able to find late racing room in the homestretch to notch her second consecutive victory in six seasonal outings. Jessie E and driver Tyler Smith staged a big rally late in the lane and turned in a game performance to finish second. The bettors' choice, Jesse Lane, was used hard in the early stages of the mile but held on gamely to finish third. Owned, bred, and trained by Dan Shetler, Playful Innocence has now earned over $160,000 from 15 lifetime outings. Sired by Justice Hall, Playful Innocence established her lifetime best mark of 1:55.2 in her previous outing amongst Indiana Gold Sire Stakes company, also a track record setting mile. The three-year-old trotting colts were up next and it was Only Just A Dream and Trace Tetrick who rallied from well off the pace to find the winner's circle in 1:55. Unhurried from the gate, Only Just A Dream settled along the rail in third while the battle took place on the front. Red Hot Herbie and Derek Hooley set fractions of :27.1 and :57.1 before feeling a threat on the outside by Natural Herbie and Verlin Yoder around the final turn. As the horses began tiring on the front, Tetrick found just enough racing room up the rail to send Only Just A Dream and he went by the tiring leaders willingly with a :28.1 final panel. Scoring his fourth win of the season, Only Just A Dream has now earned over $176,000 for his connections of P. Carter, R. Reid, S. Hummel, and Great Am Stables. Trained by Steve Carter, the three-year-old son of Justice Hall established a new lifetime best mark with the 1:55 victory. Mandy's Mattjesty and Sam Widger closed out the million dollar night with an impressive 1:52.2 romp in the $200,000 Indiana Sire Stakes final for three-year-old pacing fillies in gate to wire fashion. As part of a four-horse Ron Burke trained entry, Mandy's Mattjesty powered away from the gate to dictate fractions of :27.0, :55.1, and 1:23.1 before ever feeling a threat from the rest of the field. Always About Katey was the first to take aim at leader from the pocket but was no match for Mandy's Mattjesty who saved her best for last. Always About Katey settled for second while Harmony Oaks Quike, as part of the Burke entry, finished third. Sired by His Mattjesty, Mandy's Mattjesty notched the fifth win from eight seasonal outings while pushing her bankroll over $130,000. Also making a special appearance on the evening were 6 celebrity guests as they raced for charity in the Celebrity Exhibition race that kicked off the evening's activities. The local celebrities climbed aboard double seated jog carts to raise money for each of the Celebrity Standardbred Driver's charities. It was radio personality, Gunner from Q95, assisted by Ed Hensley, who won the seven-eighths mile dash for the Shriner's Hospital for Children and Alternatives Inc.  Live racing continues at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, July 23 with a daily post time of 5:30 p.m. The 160-day, all harness racing meet began on April 2 and will be conducted through November 9. Hoosier Park Offers Racing Fans $20,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 Pool The buzz and excitement of live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino continues with the announcement of an increase to this week’s guaranteed Pick-4 pool on Tuesday, July 23 to $20,000. In a partnership with the United States Trotting Association Strategic Wagering program and the Indiana Standardbred Association, Hoosier Park will offer this $20,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 Pool on the 14-race card slated for Tuesday, July 23 only. Two long-shot winners in the Saturday Pick-4 sequence at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino sparked a carryover in excess of $8,747 and fueled the increase to $20,000. The Pick-4, which offers a 50-cent minimum wager, begins in the third race and will continue through the sixth race. Approximate post time for the first leg of the wager, the third race, is 6:10 p.m. (est.). Free past performances for the Pick 4 races will be available on the USTA website. Expert selections and handicapping tools are also available on Hoosier Park’s website. The Pick-4 wager will offer a carryover if no one correctly selects four of four winners on Tuesday. “We are very excited for the increase,” Hoosier Park’s vice president and general manager of racing, Rick Moore noted. “We want to thank our partners, The Indiana Standardbred Association and The United States Trotting Association, for their continued support and willingness to increase the guarantee this week. The pick-4 has now become the in-wager as far as the racing industry is concerned and we’re proud of its’ success here at Hoosier Park.” Live racing at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday-Saturday schedule, with a daily post time of 5:30 p.m. The 160-day, all harness racing meet will be conducted through November 9. Emily Gaskin  

Hazel Park, MI - Longwell and harness racing breeder/owner/trainer/driver Dan Shetler were able to grind out an impressive first-over victory against pacesetter Sir James (Mark Headworth) in capturing the $100,000 William C. Connors Memorial Saturday at Hazel Park.

Six 3-year-old trotters will go postward in Friday night's (July 12) $100,000 William Connors Memorial at Hazel Park Raceway, with the compact field having met last weekend in a prep race won by Sir James.

In just the fifth start of her sophomore season, Playful Innocence used a sharp, front running effort to notch her first win of the season and lower the Hoosier Park track record for three-year-old trotting fillies in the process on Wednesday, July 10 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino.

Thunder Rises, with harness racing driver Dan Shetler at the lines, shattered a 16-year-old record for the seventh-eighths mile dash on the pace when he powered home a winner in 1:49.2 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, July 9.

Indianapolis-based harness racing driver-trainer Dan Shetler scored twice in the second round of the $10,000 Indiana Silver Sire Stakes action on Tuesday (May 22) at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino.

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