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(Berlin, MD) - Hyway Marcus leads a quartet of harness racing trotters in the $4,000 season opener of RUS MidAtlantic's 2018 Trotting Series at Ocean Downs on Sunday, July 15, one of several events taking place as part of Ocean Down's celebration of National I Love Horses Day. This will be the fifth year RUS (Riding Under Saddle) makes a stop at the resort track and has been well-received by race fans. Marcus, the 7 year old son of Gut Instinct has found a second life under saddle, sweeping the RUS MidAtlantic series last year, ridden by owner/trainer Sasha Moczulski who will be in the saddle Sunday. Last year the RUS specialist took the Ocean Downs leg in 2:02.1 and draws post four for this year's edition. Were this to be a wagering race, there's no doubt Hyway Marcus would be the overwhelming favorite, but the race needs to be run before the purse money is paid out as the possibility of an upset exists. Rider Hillary Harnett hopes to avenge One True Friend's defeat to Hyway Marcus last year at Rosecroft. The 11 year old mare by Dream Vacation is co-owned by Harnett and trainer Wesley Miller and is making her second purse start of the season, going off-stride at Historic Track on July 1. If the mare stays on-stride she will be a factor in this race. One True Friend drew post position 2 in Sunday's race. Starting from the rail, 10 year old Traverse Seelster (pp 1) comes into the race after a win last year in the Miller Memorial at Monticello Raceway, his only purse start in RUS events thus far. His last start on July 8, was in sulky at Saratoga Raceway where he finished third timed in 1:57.4 in a mid-level conditioned race. If he can flash some of his speed under saddle, Traverse Seelster may be a threat at the wire. Owner/Trainer Ashley Eldred rides the altered son of Angus Hall. Flowing James (pp 3) is well prepped for this race, competing at Historic track racing in three matinee races and one purse start where he finished second to Armbro Hall. The 13 year old gelding by Ilooklikemymother completed his preparations for the RUS MidAtlantic race with a victory at the fair track in Afton, New York. The last time Traverse Seelster raced at Ocean Downs was in 2015 when he finished second to Hyway Marcus. Flowing James is being ridden by his lessee/trainer Vanessa Karlewicz. Previous winners of RUS races at Ocean Downs are: 2014 - Truth In Action, ridden by Karen Isbell; 2015 - Hyway Marcus, Maria Buchanan; 2016 - Mr Protab, Stephanie Jacobs; 2017 - Hyway Marcus, Sasha Moczulski. Should Hyway Marcus be victorious, it will be a hat-trick in RUS racing at Ocean Downs. The non-wagering RUS event is scheduled for 8:55 PM, immediately after the sixth race on the wagering card. First race on Sunday is scheduled for 7:05 PM. There will be a meet and greet before and after the race. From the RUS MidAtlantic Chapter  

Talented trotter Releven Dream posted another harness racing track record yesterday (Tuesday) at Albion Park. The Dream Vacation gelding led throughout in the SKY Racing Mobile Trot over 2138m while posting a mile rate of 1:57.3, easily eclipsing the previous record of 1:58.6 which was held by Our Overanova when successful on August 15, 2015. Releven Dream scored easily defeating Master Hugh and Justabitcoco. The sectionals of the final mile were covered in 29.6, 30.4, 28.6 and 29.2 seconds. It was a welcome return to form for Releven Dream who has proven costly in his past two starts owing to breaks. Releven Dream is raced by Daren Garrard and prepared for him by Vicki Rasmussen while Shane Graham took the winning drive. Since being under the care of Rasmussen, Releven Dream has won 4 of his 7 starts. “He’s a very gifted trotter when he’s right and his speed is amazing, he felt great throughout and never gave his rivals a chance and possibly could’ve gone a little quicker if I wanted. It was a hot day and conditions were ripe for fast times.” Graham said. It is the second track at Albion Park to fall his way after claiming the 2647m stand-start record back on September 22, 2015. Amazingly, between Releven Dream and Our Overanova, the two talented trotters hold four Albion Park track records. Our Overanova holds the record for the 1660m mobile (1:56.2) and the 2138m stand-start (1:59.0). At this stage, there are no immediate plans for Releven Dream and he will continue to race at Albion Park although a trip to Sydney in the future could be considered. Chris Barsby

November 15, 2016 - Tuesday’s Grand Prix Dynavera Maisagri (purse €40,000, 2550 meters, 12 European starters) at Beaumont de Lomagne went to 2/5 favorite Buzz Mearas (5g Dream Vacation-Dance Of Joy) timed in 1.14.7kr. Harness racing driver Bjorn Goop teamed Buzz Mearas for owner Pierre Pilarski and trainer Vincent Lacroix. 7.8/1 Victoria du Viaduc (7f Canada-Luna du Viaduc) was second for J.A. Eliphe, ahead of 74/1 Uricano (8g Esotico Star-Kaline de Nuit) for trainer/driver J.P. Lecourt. At Reims was the Grand Prix de Reims (purse €32,000, 2550 meters, 16 starters)  and 1.4/1 Tiger Feat (9g Niky-Milady d’Heripre) was victorious clocked in 1.16.56kr for Franck Nivard. 3.1/1 Violet (7m Love You-La Rouge) with Pierre Vercruysse aboard for owner J.G.H. De Jong. Ecurie D bred this one. 4/1 Vemax (7g Nice Love-LaFolly d’Ar) was third for trainer/driver Romain Derieux. On the evening program at Paris-Vincennes was the Prix Laetitia (purse €70,000, 2850 meters, 13 starters) and 2.8/1 Cathy A Quira (4f Password-Quira des Jacquets) scored in 1.14.6kr. Gabriel Gelormini was the pilot of the Jorma Niskanen trainee that Etienne Desmet owns. 19/1 Calencia (4f Quaker Jet-Olencia) was next for Eric Raffin, ahead of 6/1 Class de Loriol (4f Ready Cash-Oraqeuse de Maryon) with Anthony Barrier at the lines. Citizen Kane (4g Orlando Vici-Queen Of Viking) with Thomas Levesque driving, won the Prix Mebsuta (purse €70,000, 2850 meters, 11 starters) clocked in 1.14.9kr for owner/breeder Pierre Levesque. Thomas Levesque is the trainer. 5.8/1 Clarck Sotho (4g Oiseau de Feux-Mocanda) was second for Anthony Barrier with third to 35/1 Curly Light (4m Redlight Jet-Orphea de Mouci) and pilot J.Ph. Monclin. Two year-olds contested the Prix Gyptis (purse €42,000, 2200 meters, 10 starters) at Vincennes, with victory to 27/1 Elite du Ruel (2f Timoko-Romance du Ruel) for trainer/driver Franck Anne. The 1.16.7kr clocked winner bested 2.9/1 Ere Nouvelle (2f Love You-Kidea) that Gabriel Gelormini teamed to best third finishing 32/1 Ecume des Louanges (2f Gazouillis-Jolie Lily) with Franck Ouvrie up. On November 14 action at LeCroise Laroche featured the Grand Prix du Nord des 4 Ans (purse €40,000, 2800 meters, 11 starters). 58/1 Caline de Chahains (4f Rolling d’Heripre-Nuit de Plainville) was victorious timed in 1.15.7kr, defeating 2..1/1 Cobra Bleu (4m Fortuna Fant-Nuit Irisee), the favorite, with trainer Pierre Vercruysse driving for breeder/owner Nathalie Chapdelaine. 5.1/1 Choicolat du Bourg (4m Nahar de Beval-Malouvia) was third for J.G. Van Eeckhaute aboard. And in Spain At Son Pardo (Spain) was the Criterium 2 Year-Olds Spain (purse €15,000, 1650 meters autostart, 14 starters). 2.6/1 Es Gonyador de Fon (2m SJ’s Photo-Dalia de Kit) scored in 1.18.1kr for J.A. Riera.Cuadras Morro bred and trains the winner. 4.9/1 Espiga des Liorer (2f JackThe Ripper-Ohlala Tirety) took second and 15/1 Enigma de Ladil (2f Petit Poucet-Tota de Ladil) landed third. Thomas H. Hicks  

Talented trotter Relven Dream has featured in a harness racing stable switch. And it comes on the eve of the upcoming Gr.2 $40,000 Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Championship series at Albion Park next month. The Dream Vacation – Ten To One gelding has joined the leading stables of Vicki Rasmussen and Shane Graham after being transferred from the stables of Daren Garrard. “It came as a bit of a shock because he’s a really nice trotter, Daren asked if we interested and we didn’t need to think twice about taking him on board. Obviously the DJA series will be the main priority and hopefully we can have him fit and firing for it.” Graham said. The former New Zealand eight-year-old originally entered the stables of Peter Walsh at Menangle upon arrival on Australian soil and went winless in 10 starts before relocating to Queensland. Joining the stables of Daren Garrard, Releven Dream struck instantly winning his first two starts at Albion Park, the latter victory coming in track record time. Releven Dream smashed the 2647m stand-start record when rating 2:00.8. But soon after, the wins dried up and the talented trotter has gone winless in his next 10 starts. Often he cost himself owing to his ordinary manners and waywardness. Sent to the spelling paddock following his latest unplaced run on June 18, Releven Dream is back and ready to kick-start his latest campaign. “He will trial on Tuesday at this stage, we’re happy with the way he’s going and trial will tell us a lot more about him so hopefully everything works out for the better. “Daren did all the foundation work with him, he did all the jog work with following his spell and gave all him a solid base for this campaign, hopefully we can get him back to the form like he showed when setting the track record last year. This series next month looks like being pretty strong with the locals and several trotters from Sydney being earmarked, if we can get him going like Daren did, we’re a chance.” Releven Dream lacks nothing as far as his pedigree is concerned; he ranks as a half-brother to the likes of Ten Too, Habibti, Lothario, Habibti Ivy and Habibti Inta. by Chris Barsby

Millionaire trotter Stent’s outstanding international sire Dream Vacation will be again available to New Zealand breeders this harness racing season but through Haras des Trotteurs who have acquired the Australasian rights. Dream Vacation has been available by frozen semen to Australasian breeders for more than a decade and has excelled at stud in both countries. In New Zealand Dream Vacation has only 88 registered foals, three- year-old or older and no less than 60  are winners which is 68% of his live foals  for stakes of  $3.4M in New Zealand. Winners include such stars as Stent $1,156,000, Cyclone U Bolt $240,000, Leighton Hest $205,000, Boizel $198,578, Real Deal Yankee $175,000, Dream Merchant $159,000, and Great Getaway $117,000 and Torbjorn $103,433. In Australia he has just 39 foals three years or older for 27 winners of $1.5M  including such handy trotters such as Glenferrie Dreamer $158,706, King Kong Cooma $140,228, Lord Liam $113,942, Likeaplayboy $96,000, Purplepeopleater $92,063 and Dougie $89,000. Based in Sweden where he has been in their top ten stallions the past three years, Dream Vacation is available to New Zealand breeders only,at the same fee as last season, $6000 + GST, payable on live foal. There are unfortunately no straws left available in Australia. Dream Vacation joins a stellar cast of European stallions at Haras des Trotteurs headed by the world’s leading sire by earnings Love You and other French heavyweight sires including his best son Quaker Jet,  his full brother Repeat Love and  Sam Bourbon, all group winning sires. Dave Sanders

Illawong Armstrong produced an extraordinary run in last year’s Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series three-year-old final for harness racing trotting colts and geldings. Twelve months have passed since the son of Dream Vacation/Figment blew the start and was tailed off in the Vicbred final before making enormous ground late to finish third, and trainer-driver Jodi Quinlan has the gelding absolutely flying. Illawong Armstrong, a member of owner Dr Martin Hartnett’s ‘Illawong squad’, romped home in his Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series heat at Maryborough yesterday, defeating runner-up Belts by 23.5m in a mile rate of 2:04.5. And the news only got better for the Illawong team tonight with Armstrong drawing the pole for next Friday night’s Final. He has to be hard to beat from there. In driving rain yesterday Illawong Armstrong looked every bit the professional, Quinlan going easy on the prodigious talent who, but for his poor manners last season, arguably could already boast two Group 1 wins – producing two of the biggest runs you’ll ever see in defeat in the Vicbred and Breeders Crown finals. “He had a good run. His manners were really good,” Quinlan said of his most recent outing. “He got a lovely, easy trip out front and I expect him to do that, he is an above-average horse. “He’s probably the best horse I have put a bridle on. Unfortunately it hasn’t been an ideal preparation because he got really sick, but we have made the most of the time we have had.” Quinlan said Illawong Armstrong’s Maryborough win will have him peaked fitness-wise for next Friday night’s Group 1 final. “He really needed the (heat) run,” she said. “He’s not really a natural leader, and has an exceptional sprint, but if he draws to run at the front then he can do that.” John Meade-trained Sparkling Success won the other Vicbred four-year-old trotting males’ heat, defeating fast-finishing Kyvalley Boomerang by a short half-head. Sparkling Success (Great Success/Diamond Insitu) has drawn right alongside the expected favourite in gate two. Driven by Gavin Lang, Sparkling Success enjoyed the perfect run behind leader Eljaykay Phoenix and got the better of that horse when it galloped halfway up the straight. Kyvalley Boomerang flashed home late, while Save Our Pennys picked up third from last year’s Vicbred two-year-old reigning champion Eljaykay Phoenix.   Draw for Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series 4YO Entires/Geldings Final 1: Illawong Armstrong 2: Sparkling Success 3: Wake Up Wilbur 4: Eljaykay Phoenix 5: Akotiri 6: Save Our Pennys 7: Kyvalley Boomerang 8: Well Deserved 9: The Third Son 10: Spud 11: Belts 12: Bring The Action (ODM) 13: Fabrication (ODM) EM Cody Winnell

Sunday’s Grand Prix SVA Jean Roze at Vitre saw 18 starters in the €45,000 purse, 3225 meters event on the turf. 5.9/1 Uniflosa Bella (8f Jag de Bellouet-Koctiflosa Gede) earned the win timed in 1.16.2kr for Antoine Wiels driving for owner/trainer J-P Marmion. 57/1 Uni de Travouille (8g If Only-Unika du Septel) was a solid second for owner/trainer/driver J, Dubreil with third  to 82/1 Tresor des hayes (9g Islero de Bellouet-Eluka) with driver/trainer/owner M.G. Baroy in the sulky. Ah Quel Micha (6m Rocklyn-Oceane du Phase) won the May 6th Prix Bettina at Paris-Vincennes, the Q+ race of the day. The purse was €48,000 in this 2100 meters autostart event with 18 European entrants. Jean-Philippe Dubois teamed the winner for his Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin, clocked in 1.11.7kr. 99/1 Yankee’s Photo (8m SJ’s Photo-Yankee Tracer) was second for Franck Ouvrie with a strong stretch kick for Norway’s Bjorn Gulbrunsen. 9.5/1 Pancottina Bar (7f Varenne-Valuta Lavec) held the third spot for Roberto Andreghetti, trainer Catello Savarese and Scuderia Stecca STR. 2.6/1` Ah Mon Idylle (6f Meaulnes du Corta-Idylle du Bouquet) eas foruth for Matthieu Mottier ahead of 9.3/1 Namale Kronos )9g Ken Warkentin-Zamia FC) reined by Pierre Vercruysse for owner Stall Courant AB. On May 7 action at Orebro SWE was excellent also. The Gr. Orebro International  Stayerlopp over 3140 meters distance handicapped (400,000SEK to the winner) went to Mellby Viking (8m Viking Kronos-Naumi de Lou-Extreme Dream) for driver Jorman Kontio and trainer Timo Nurmos. This one overcame a 40 meter penalty to score in 1.13.4kr at 2.2/1 odds. 48/1 Reckless (6m Ready Cash-Haven-Supergill) was next for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop, also penalized 40 meters, and third was 20 meter handicapped 62/1 odds Coco de Vie (5f Chocolatier-Bliss-Angus Hall) for reinsman Torbjorn Jansson. The winner was making his initial 2016 start and the victory was his third straight and 10th lifetime in 33 outings. The same card’s Prix Glauke (purse €48,000, 2100 meters autostart, 14 entrants) went to 1.13.2kr timed, 1.6/1 odds Classic Way (4m Prodigious-Pole Position) driven by Eric Raffin. Sebastien Guarato trains this one for Pierre Pilarski. 6.8/1 Cerenzo Turbo (4m Ganymede-Poesie de Vigne) ended second with a strong rally for trainer/driver Gabriel-Angel Pou Pou. 4.7/`1 Calin de Glassnet (4m Orlando Vici-Mallory de Glasnet) was third for trainer/driver Romain Derieux. The programs’ V75 Gold Division for 150,000SEK to the winner of the 1609 meter autostart contest went to 1.1/1 Allaballakaitoz 98G Credit Winner-Southwind Sweetbay-Valley Victory) with trainer Peter Untersteiner up, timed in a sharp 1.11.1kr. 33/1 Kash’s Cantab (8m Cantab Hall-O’Cala Kash-Overcomer) was second for trainer/driver Joakim Lovgren with third erned by 114/1 Nato Dream (7m Donato Hanover-Nugget Dream-Pine Chip) with Per Lennartsson driving for Stefan Lemander. Spring Erom, Cool Keeper and Smilin Eli were next across the line with Magic Tonight and Quid Pro Quo unplaced. Mares contested the Enoch Karlssons Lopp for 100,000SEK forst prize over the 2100 meter autostart course. 2.7/1 Bethel Hanover (6f Donato Hanover-Beignet Hanover-Malabar Man) scored in 1.12.6kr for driver Johynny Takter and trainer Per Hedberg. 20/1 Blue Martini As (6f Allstar Hann-True Blue Victory-Valley Victory) was second for Orjan Kihlstrom and trainer Roger Walmann. 7/10 favporite Windy Ways (6f Conway Hall-Southwind Flanders-Lindy Lane) landed third for Erik Adielsson and treainer Daniel Reden. Finally the V75 Silver (125,000SEK to the winner, 2100 meters autostart) on the fine card went to 9/2 odds Global Patriot (6m Dream Vacation-I Dream The Dream-Victory Dream) and trainer/driver Magnus Jakobsson. He  bested 9/1 Al’s Winnermede (5m Olimede-Memory-Supergill) for trainer/driver Svante Ericsson. 1.1/1 favorite Coldtown (7g Cantab Hall-Brylin Starlet-Balanced Image) garnered the third spot with Jorma Kontio up for Timo Nurmos. Timos also trains fourth finishing Sir Ratzeputz 96m Love You-Celebrate-Lindy’s Crown) that Goop teamed at 8/1 odds. Thomas H. Hicks

Harness racing trainer Joakim Lovgren teamed 5/2 favorite Alfas da Vinci (8g Orlando Vici-Hillary Clinton-And Arifant) to victory in today’s V75 Gold at Kalmar. Raced over 2140 meters autostart for 150,000SEK first prize, the winner defeated 5.9/1 Spring Erom (11m Gentle Star-Springflickan-Prince Mystic) with Erik Adielsson up. Third was 14/1 Riff Kronos (6m Dream Vacation-Elaine Kronos-Viking Kronos) for Peter Ingves. Robert Bergh’s veteran Love You gelding, Nahar, off at 4.1/1, was disqualified. The V75 Silver this day over 2140 meters went to 3/2 favorite Buzz Mearas (5g Dream Vacation-Dance of Joy-Malabar Man) with Adrian Kolgjini aboard. 5/1 Mr. Chicago (7g Cantab Hall-Zeta Jones-Enjoy Lavec), bred by Brittany Farms USA, was second for Veljo Heiskanen with third to 85/1 Quel Bourbon (7g Infinitif-Qualita Bourbon-Love You), bred by Jean-Pierre Dubois, and driven by Thomas Dalborg for owner/trainer Ely Iverson. Thomas H. Hicks

December 19, 2015 – Palermo Italy - Saturday’s Prix Mediterraneo (purse €45,100, 1600 meters autostart for three year-olds) at Palermo Italy went to Thor di Girifalco (3m Dream Vacation-Iduna November-Coktail Jet) that scored in 1.12.4kr, two tenths off the record, for teamster Davide Di Stefano, his 11th victory in 27 outings good for career earnings in excess of €130,000. Timed identical to the winner was second finishing Tioss Mede SM (3f Ganymede-Ioss Court SM-Toss Out) for Antonio Di Nardo. This one’s second dam is Croquet Court (Baltic Speed-Grassbed). A length off the top two was third finishing Teodora Caf (3f Cantab Hall-Fantastica Star-Lemon Dra).   Thomas H. Hicks  

November 21, 2015 - Adrian Kolgjini piloted the Lutfi Kolgjini trained Buzz Mearas (4g Dream Vacation-Dance Of Joy-Malabar Man) to victory in today’s Axel Jensens at Bjerke, with 300,000NOK to the winner of this 1609 meter autostart contest. The winner scored easily timed in 1.10.4kr (1:53.2 mile rate) to defeat Explosive De Vie (4g Explosive Matter-Ava-Pine Chip) driven by trainer Jim Oscarsson with third to Daley Lovin (4m Conway Hall-Dreamsmadeofthis-Dream Vacation) handled by trainer Daniel Reden. Exodus Hanover and Royal Ice took the next two spots. All of the top five, except the winner, were bred and registered in the US. On the Bjerke card was the Kai Eriksens Gold Division and the winner was Denmark’s Tycoon Conway Hall (5m Conway Hall-Golden Sunday-Supergill) for trainer/driver Steen Juul. The winner earned 150,000NOK in victory over the 1609 meters autostart course. Timed in 1.11kr (mile rate 1:54.3) Tycoon Conway Hall defeated Magiccarpetride (9m Angus Hall-Meadowbranch Magic-Valley Victory) reined by Orjan Kihlstrom and third finishing Chatain (6g Love You-C’est Bon-Bosphorus) from Denmark and piloted by Erlend Rennesvik. Remee La Marc (7g Andover Hall-Loving Her Is Easy-Valley Victory) and Vidar Hop was fourth ahead of Art On Line (8g Rite On Line-Lass Fleur-Backstreet Guy) and Johnny Takter. Bjerke’s Silver Division Flaata Eiendom for 125,000NOK to the winner over 1609 meters autostart went to US-bred Call Me Hanover (6g Kadabra-Chiptease-Pine Chip) driven by Eriend Rennesvik. Timed in 1.11.2kr (mile rate 1:54.6) the winner vanquished Denmark’s Punk (6m Angus Hall-Primavera-SJ’s Photo) driven by Tom Erik Solberg with third to Tripolini VP (5g Archduke Kemp-Lady Magic-Shane Scottseth) and teamster Jeppe Juel. Highspeed Call, by From Above, was fourth with Ja El Tomcat, by Chocolatier, fifth, that one from the dam of JL Cruze, Topcat Hall by Conway Hall.  Earlier in the week at Aby SWE (November 18), the Jerry Riordan trained, Lisa Riordan owned, Radysin America won an event worth 70,000SEK to the winner. Radysin America (5f Donato Hanover-Zagabria Dei-Victory Dream) was driven by Peter Ingves and scored in 1.13.1kr for her third 2015 victory and 12th career win in 40 starts. Radysin was bred by the late Lou Guida and is a half-sister to the great European mare Lisa America, bred in Italy. Thomas H. Hicks

Veterinary treatment for a virus has ruled Releven Dream out of the Group 1 Statewide Group Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Championship which commences at Albion Park on Friday night. Releven Dream was one of the more fancied candidates for the three-race Championship which commences with the first of two rounds of heats this week and culminates with the $50,000 Final at Albion Park on Saturday night 17 October. Burpengary trainer Daren Garrard said that Releven Dream had a high temperature this morning and has begun treatment. His scratching takes him out of the Championship as trotters must contest both this week and next week’s heats to be eligible for the final. “This was the race we had him set for and his last win was so good, he was going to be a big show in the series ,”Garrard said. “He will probably be right in a week but right now he is not so it’s a lost opportunity for us.” Releven Dream burst into contention for the Darrell Alexander Memorial with blockbusting 32 metre and 21 metre victories at its most recent Albion Park starts. Releven Dream posted a new track record for 2647 metres from a standing start when he powered away to an easy win at Albion Park last week. The Dream Vacation gelding’s scratching  will make the task of Queensland’s star trotter Our Overanova, chasing its first Group 1 victory, a little easier. The Grant Dixon trained Our Overanova has won its last four straight at Albion Park since resuming after a southern campaign which resulted in two wins at Melton. With 25 victories from 46 starts Our Overanova has earned his back mark of 40 metres for the 2647 metre Championship heat. Former New Zealander Saratoga has been racing well in Victoria in recent months and will make its Queensland debut for trainer/driver Adam Sanderson in this heat. Saratoga will start from the front mark.  New South Wales trainer Alex Alchin has another former New Zealander Cyclone Lucky Seven to go from the front mark. Alchin has engaged local star Shane Graham to drive the Majestic Son five-year-old which has posted victories at Bendigo (Vic)  and Menangle (NSW) in recent months. Blake Fitzpatrick has also made the trip from New South Wales with 5yo Majestic Son mare My Valerie, a former 2 & 3yo star which posted two victories at Menangle in August. My Valerie will start off a 10 metre handicap. In the second heat of the Darrell Alexander Championship, trainer Vicki Rasmussen and driver Adam Sanderson team up with back marker and likely race favourite, Goldstar Invasion. The Armbro Invasion 10yo has been handicapped on 30 metres for the Championship. A winner at Albion Park in September, Goldstar Invasion has been beaten by Our Overanova at its past two starts. In this race Goldstar Invasion will have to contend with Overanova’s stablemate Sharons Millicent. The grey mare has posted an impressive record since joining Dixon’s stable. The Monkey Bones mare has won 13 races and beat Goldstar Invasion home when runner up to Our Overanova at Albion Park two starts back. Sharons Millicent is handicapped on 10 metres. by David Aldred Related Links Fields for Gold Coast at Albion Park, Friday 02 October 2015 Form guide for Gold Coast at Albion Park, Friday 02 October 2015

Rejuvenated seven-year-old Releven Dream put himself squarely into contention for Queensland's Group 1 DJ Alexander Memorial Trotting Championship with a record breaking victory in today’s 2647 metre Trot handicap at the harness racing meeting at Albion Park. The Daren Garrard trained gelding kept its Albion Park record perfect with a stunning and faultless display to cruise home by 21 metres. From a 10 metre handicap Releven Dream stepped into second spot but driver Matt Neilson wasted little time in taking the short-priced favourite to the front. He trotted faultlessly going through the second quarter of the last mile in 28.7 with Neilson holding him back to the field until he reached the half mile pole. Then he let Releven Dream slide and he put a space of more than 30 metres between him and his nearest rival. Releven Dream went to the post under his own steam and cruised home by 21 metres from Morning Fawlty in a mile rate of 2.00.8 taking .1 second off a six year old track record held by Tony Turpin’s Hi Jinks. The victory puts Releven Dream into the $50,000 DJA (2647m) and his inclusion will added plenty of interest to the race. Under the standing start handicap conditions without any further wins he will start from scratch with the first round of heats scheduled at Albion Park on 2 October. The second round will take place a week later with the Final on 17 October at Albion Park. Releven Dream, a well-travelled former New Zealander, has now raced twice at Albion Park winning both times and took its career tally to five wins from 32 starts. Each of Releven Dream’s victories have been from a standing start on tracks in NZ and Brisbane making him an ideal DJA candidate. The son of Dream Vacation was imported to Australia in late 2013 and spent 2014 in New South Wales before making its Queensland debut this month after an 18 month absence from the racetrack with a 32 metre success. In the DJA heats Releven Dream will be put to the sword with Queensland's current in form trotters Our Overanova, Goldstar Invasion, Sharons Millicent and former Victoria's Redwood Classic winner Daenerys Targaryen and promising trotter Drunken Maniac certain to be among the nominations. Dave Aldred

Last Thursday's dispersal sale of Carl Middleton's racing and breeding stock at the Ashburton Racecourse became a bit emotional when auctioneer Peter Lagan announced at the end of the sale that Carl had passed away while the sale was in progress. The onset of cancer had forced Carl to reluctantly sell his bloodstock but the announcement by Peter Lagan still came as a bit of a shock to everyone there. The sale itself was extremely well attended and most of the nineteen lots that went under the hammer were actively sought. Top price on the day went to the Dream Vacation mare Savona 1:55.4 ($137,675) who was in foal to Love You's full brother Repeat Love. She was purchased by Flora Robson from Australia for $33,000. Next highest priced lot on the day was the three year old Repeat Love gelding named Louis Moss. Qualifying for Carl at two, the impressive looking individual  was purchased by Tim Butt of Premier Stables for $32,000 and looks a nice addition to his barn. The third highest lot on the day was the smart Love You racemare Another Love 2:00.9 ($43,570). A maiden mare, she was sold in foal to Dream Vacation for $30,000 to Aldebaran Park from Australia. These three lots dominated proceedings on the day with the next highest price after that being $10,500 for Bourbon and Dry, a Sam Bourbon gelding that was placed at three last season. Australian buyers purchased four of the nineteen lots on offer with Another Starlet and Sweet Pretense joining Savona and Another Love in now having Australian owners. Overall the nineteen lots sold for $141,150 with an average of $7428 which was an excellent result in the current environment. Check results here Harnesslink Media

July 24, 2015 - Derby Week is underway at Berlin-Mariendorf with today’s Vis-à-Vis Champions (€10,000 purse, 2000 meters distance handicap, nineinternational starters) the featured event. Overcoming a 20 meter penalty, along with Abano As, the Josef Franzl trained and reined Dream Magic BE (6m Dream Vacation-Dantesca Cla) gained a good inner position shortly after the start, and circled wide in the final bend to wear down the leaders to score a narrow victory clocked in 1.13.2kr (race time 2:27.8). The winner, owned by Stall AMB, was off at 2.7/1 odds and increased his career earnings to €287,984. Daydream (7f Gigant Neo-Maydream Meter) was second at 18.2/1 for Michael Nimczyk and owner/trainer Charlotte Jung. 25/1 Man In Black (6g Lets Go-Vasterbo Bodyguard) was third for Herbert Strobl, and owner Stall Marcus. Earlier in the card the Die Brandenburds Allemagne (€5,000 purse, 2500 meters, 10 international starters) went to 6.6/1 Venise des Lucas (6f Defi d’Aunou-Gloria Song). Heinz Wewering drove this winner to an impressive score in 1.16.2kr for trainer Henk AJ Grift and owner Jean F. Senet. Tomorrow action continues with three Derby Filly eliminations and the Monte Derby. Sunday the card includes two Derby Open elims and the Charlie Mills Memorial. Cash Hanover and Thorsten Tietz  headline the Derby hopefuls Sunday. Thomas H. Hicks    

Ever since Yonkers Raceway announced plans to bring back the International Trot on October 10, 2015 – with a $1 million purse – interest has been very strong from trotting owners and harness racing trainers around the globe.   The Yonkers Raceway Race Office has been in contact with the connections of top New Zealand trotter Stent. The altered son by Dream Vacation out of Belle Galleon by Chiola Hanover has amassed 28 wins and 17 seconds in 61 lifetime starts with earnings of more than $1.1 million.   Stent is owned by Trevor Casey and co-trained by Colin and Julie DeFilippi and driven by Colin De Filippi. Stent has raced at distances ranging from 1609 meters to 2800 meters in both Grade 1 and Grade 2 races on his home New Zealand soil and in some of Australia’s most prestigious trotting events.   The International Trot will be held at a one mile and one quarter distance at Yonkers Raceway, which is approximately 2000 meters.   Reports are also beginning to surface from Europe on possible participants who are just now leaving the breeding shed to start their traditional mid-July preparations for the upcoming Masters Season. A possible trip to the US for the International Trot and/or the Breeders Crown can still leave time for European trotters to return home and prepare for the Prix d’Amerique in Paris in January.   Yonkers Raceway is planning a week-long celebration for the International Trot, with several New York themed events for invited participants and their guests. Details about on track events for October 10 are still being finalized.   The SOA of NY is working closely with Yonkers track management to help make the return of the International Trot a success. Yonkers Race Secretary Steve Starr will have a large task ahead of him as he sorts through the international contenders and puts together a star studded global field, with a million dollar pot of gold on the line and international bragging rights for one country’s breeding program.  

Tatura trainer David Abrahams combined with leading harness racing reinsman Nathan Jack to take out the three-year-old colts and geldings’ Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series final with Fabrication tonight at Tabcorp Park Melton. The gelding by Dream Vacation out of Figment bolted in by 12.5 metres, well-tried in the betting ring into $4.70 third-favourite behind Valley Ess Jay and Illawong Armstrong. Punters who took the $2.30 about Illawong Armstrong were shattered shortly after the start, the talented squaregaiter jumping out of his gear and losing enormous ground. Amazingly he fought his way back into contention late in the race, charging into third placing for reinswoman Jodi Quinlan, while Valley Ess Jay finished second for Chris Svanosio. But it was all honours with the winner and Jack was full of praise for Fabrication’s trainer. “I’d like to thank David and the Abrahams family, they’ve been good supporters of mine since day dot,” Jack said immediately after the win. “Dave’s doing a great job. There are not many that do a better job than Dave.” Down the back the final time Jack cut loose on Fabrication, darting past leader Valley Ess Jay. It was a winning move, Valley Ess Jay unable to fight back and regain the lead, Fabrication instead drawing well clear in the lane. “Everything went to plan,” Jack said. “Obviously it was going to be a very tactical race. “I was real happy in the run … even happier when Gavin (Lang) went and Ants (Anthony Butt) decided to post him. That played into our hands. Then that one galloped at the bell, which was good as it left a spot for Gavin to get in, where we didn’t have to go four-wide. Everything worked out perfect.” Fabrication rated 2:00.4 in winning. Watch Fabrication take out tonight's Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series Final Cody Winnell

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