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Columbus, MN - The Tuesday night (Aug. 6) harness racing program at Running Aces featured the $16,000 Mares Open Pace, with a nice field of nine top level distaffers squaring off behind the gate. Delightfully Wild was a slight favorite in the wagering at 5-2, while last week's winner PV Miracle Mary was sent off at 3-1, and Pull The Shade was well supported at 7-2. Nick Roland sent Delightfully Wild right to the front from post five, flashing her customary early speed and posting a quick opening panel of :27.2, while Brady Jenson put Pull The Shade into play immediately and grabbed the pocket position. PV Miracle Mary (Rick Magee) left for position from post nine and was able to secure the fourth spot early. Delightfully Wild ($7.20) was able to control the tempo of the race, posting very solid middle fractions of :56, and 1:23.4 to keep her rivals in chase mode. PV Miracle Mary tried hard to get past the leader from first-over, but Delightfully Wild continued to pace strong on the lead, and dug in gamely when confronted late by pocket-sitter Pull The Shade who posted a strong inside charge to the line.  Delightfully Wild hit the wire first by a neck in a very sharp 1:52.2 mile, for her 30th career tally, and her sixth win of the season. Pull The Shade just missed the top prize, and PV Miracle Mary checked home in third. The winner is a 6 year old daughter of Bettor's Delight, she is owned by Richard Morita and David Yamada, and trained by Jessie Pacheco. A pair of two year old Open events were also featured on Tuesday's program, with Teachmehowtotory picking up her third career win in five starts in the $10,000 two year old Open Trot in 2:01.3 for owner Set The Pace Racing, and trainer/driver Nick Roland, and Bunkerhill Phil picking up his sixth win in a row in the $10,000 two year old Open Pace in 1:59 with Don Harmon in the bike for owner/trainer Gene Miller. Driver Nick Roland led the night with three winners, while Don Harmon and Steve Wiseman both picked up driving doubles on the Tuesday card. Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday, August 10 with first post at 6:00 pm (CT). By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces      

Columbus, MN - The Tuesday evening (July 17) Harness Racing card at Running Aces featured the weekly Mares $12,000 Open Handicap Pace, and Delightfully Wild remained razor sharp by delivering a gate-to-wire winning performance in 1:53.4 for her 10th victory of the season. Delightfully Wild was sent off as race favorite, as part of a 2 horse entry and she drew the outside seven post in the talented field of 7 distaffers. Driver Lemoyne "Mooney" Svendsen sent her charging hard from the gate, engaging in an early battle with last week's winner Kiss On The Lips (Nick Roland). Delightfully Wild was able to establish command quickly and remained on top throughout the fractions of 27.1 and 57.2 before facing strong pressure from her stablemate Bettor Lady (Dean Magee) as they rounded the final bend and registered 1:26.2 at the ¾ pole. Delightfully Wild still had command turning in, but Kiss On The Lips was ready to pounce from the pocket, and Whatitdo Babyboo (Steve Wiseman) had followed the outer flow and tipped three-wide coming for home, she took a split-second lead with 70 yards to the wire but Delightfully Wild would not relent and Kiss On The Lips was surging along the inside. It was a 3 horse battle to the line, and Delightfully Wild ($4.60) kept her neck in front at the wire, with Kiss On The Lips checking in second, just in front of Whatitdo Babyboo. The winner is a 5 year old by Bettor's Delight, owned by Richard Morita and David Yamada, and trained by Jessie Pacheco. The two year olds invaded the track on Tuesday night at Running Aces, kicking things off with Burning Blaze delivering on his promise showed in two sharp qualifying wins. The impressive gelding by Wind Me Up turned in an eye opening gate to wire tally in 1:57.3, in his $8,500 Minnesota-Sired event, checking in over 6 lengths ahead of his rivals. Burning Blaze ($2.40) is owned by Alan and Cheryl Sandbulte and Edward Gutin and is trained by Justin Anfinson. MD Magic ($9.80) converted a pocket trip into a debut victory in the $14,000 Minnesota-Sired 2 year old Trot, trotting home in 30.2 to stop the timer in 2:04 for trainer/driver Nick Roland and owners Set The Pace Racing, LLC. MD Magic is a gelding by Braggart. Lone Pine Shuzy (James Yoder) was a very sharp second, after setting the fractions. WindmeupNwatchmego (Dean Magee) closed from off the pace, posting a sharp 28.0 final quarter to capture the win in the $8,500 Two year old filly pace, in 1:59.4, with Trinitysfancyfilly (Brian Detgen) posting a strong second, beaten just a half-length. The winning filly is by Wind Me Up and is owned by Richard Davelaar and trained by Gordon Graham. This coming weekend at Running Aces is Dan Patch weekend, with The Dan Patch Historical Society on-site on Saturday, July 21, and also featuring a Horse & Driver bobble-head giveaway and Live Music. Saturday's featured races are the $25,000 Minnesota-Preferred Trot and $25,000 Minnesota Preferred Pace. Sunday (July 22) is a huge day for Minnesota Harness Racing, featuring the $50,000 Dan Patch Free-For-All Final and also featuring a Live broadcast by NAHUpicks.com and a day full of fan giveaways with a Grand Prize of a Trip for Two to the 2018 Hambletonian Stakes at The Meadowlands. by Darin Gagne', for Running Aces

Columbus, MN - The Tuesday night (July 3) card of Harness Racing at Running Aces was loaded with exciting and competitive races, and the $11,000 Mares Open Handicap Pace was no exception.   A talented field of 6 went to battle for weekly top honors. The talk of the tote-board was Whatitdo BabyBoo (Steve Wiseman), who was sent of as 3/2 favorite, after an impressive season debut 3rd last week at this top level. Second choice at 2/1 was Kiss On The Lips (Nick Roland), who has already recorded two wins at the current meet, and also heavily backed was Delightfully Wild (Lemoyne Svendsen) at 5/2.   Nick Roland fired up Kiss On The Lips to be fast off the gate and charging hard from her outside six post, but Delightfully Wild was also pacing strong in the opening stages, and Kiss On The Lips would have to settle for the pocket. Abbijade Hanover (Rick Magee) floated out in fourth position on the outside but could not find a seat at the pylons, and was forced to press the pace and try to clear the leader, that resulted in a very fast 26.4 opening fraction.   The battle at the top continued for more than half a mile, (55.4 and 1:24.2) and eventually took its toll on the first-over challenger. The leader, however, appeared to get stronger as the race got longer, and widened her lead around the final bend. Whatitdo Babyboo had rallied three-wide into the final turn to take over second and Kiss On The Lips was third along the pylons.   Delightfully Wild ($7.20) paced strong in the lane to keep everyone at bay and record a solid two length tally in 1:52. She is owned by Richard Morita and David Yamada and trained by Jessie Pacheco. tonight's victory was the 9th win in 19 starts for the 5 year old daughter of Bettor's Delight.   The $12,500 Top-Level Claiming Handicap pace ($12,500 - $15,000 tags) went to Hard Cold Cash (Dean Magee) once again for three wins in a row, the last two both in 1:52.2, and both in gate-to-wire fashion. Hard Cold Cash ($3.20) is a talented 6 year old stallion by Dali, he is owned by Antonia Storer and trained by Denise Maier.   Drivers Nick Roland and Lemoyne (Mooney) Svendsen both picked up driving doubles on the card.   The 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot has a carryover of $2,380.42 for Saturday night (July 7). Coming up on Sunday (July 8) we will host the eliminations for the $95,000 (total) Dan Patch Free-For-All Pacing series sponsored by Watch and Wager. The top 5 finishers in each elimination will advance to the Dan Patch Preview Pace (July 15) and the $50,000 Dan Patch FFA Final (July 22).   by Darin Gagne', for Running Aces

Windsun Galaxie put his class and speed on display last week at Cal Expo when he proved a punctual favorite in a conditioned trotting event, giving young trainer Jessie Pacheco his second of three victories on the card. An 11-year-old son of Kadabra owned by Ronald Rettig-Zucchi, the win by Windsun Galaxie was third from his last six starts and put his career bank close to the $480,000 plateau with a 1:52 4/5 mark that was established six years ago. Windsun Galaxie has been unbeatable of late when getting away from the top trotters on the grounds and joining forces with veteran Chip Lackey. They waltzed home by 14 lengths on April 6, then got away from the razor-sharp Pridecrest for his most recent assignment and made every pole a winning one with five lengths to spare. As mentioned earlier, it the middle of a hat track for trainer Pacehco, who has really made a name for himself at this meet with a steady stream of visits to the local winner’s circle. Jessie is the 25-year-old son of conditioner Lino Pacheco and has apparently learned his lessons very well. “Everything I know about this sport I learned from my dad,” he said. “I also want to thank the owners, who have been very supportive.”   Delightfully Wild gets marquee treatment Delightfully Wild, fresh from a victory in last week’s Kirk Breed Pace, aims for her eighth win on the season in Friday night’s featured $5,500 Filly and Mare Open. A nine-race card is on tap under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 6:40 p.m. There will also be six California Sire Stakes events decided as non-betting events prior to the regular card. Delightfully Wild is a 5-year-old daughter of Bettor’s Delight out of the Western Ideal mare Wild Ride Hanover who races for Richard Morita and David Yamada with Lino Pacheco training and James Kennedy at the helm. The bay mare set a new lifetime mark when he captured the March 16 Open, rattling off a 1:53 2/5 mile that evening en route to a length and a half score. Sent off the 3-5 choice in last week’s Kirk Breed Pace, Delightfully Wild did not disappoint her many backers as she came first-over to get the job done over Kiss On The Lips in another solid performance. Delightfully Wild will leave from the assigned outside slot and taking her on are the aforementioned Kiss On The Lips, Bettor Lady, Moonshinenmonkeys and Shark Festival. With Saturday being closing night of the meet, there will be mandatory payouts in all wagers. Going into the final weekend of racing here, Luke Plano will be the leading driver with Steve Wiseman completing the exacta, while Kathie Plested will be a comfortable winner of the trainer’s race.   Mark Ratzky Cal Expo Harness

After spending several years under the tutelage of his father Lino, 25-year-old Jessie Pacheco is making a name for himself here at Cal Expo, including a four-bagger on last Saturday night's harness racing program. Among the performers in Jessie's barn is the hard-hitting 8-year-old I'm An Athlete, who races for Ronald Rettig-Zucchi and has several wins in the Open Pace to his credit at this meeting, with last week's top dance among his triumphs. Jessie was born in California, but after an accident at age 1, he went to Mexico to live with his mother. While visiting his father at age 9, he was exposed to harness racing and upon his return to the States at 18 he set out to make it his life's work. "In Mexico I rode quarter horses, but I knew I wanted to come back here and work with my dad and the harness horses," he explained. It was two years ago that Pacheco took out his trainer's license and he has been making a steady stream of visits to the winner's circle at this meeting. "Everything I know about this sport I learned from my dad. I also want to thank the owners who have been very supportive." In addition to training, Jessie is slowly segueing into driving with a few evening ventures to his credit at this meeting. "I definitely need to get more experience with the driving," he noted. "Right now, I'm concentrating on the training." Talkin Tootsie, Silverlode headline main event Talkin Tootsie, who has won three of her last five starts including an upset over division leader Pridecrest two weeks ago; and the hard-hitting Silverlode loom the top combatants in Friday night's $5,500 Open II Trot. There will be 12 races on the Watch and Wager LLC program with the headliner going as the fourth event on the evening. A pair of $6,500 California Sire Stakes will be decided as non-betting events prior to the regular card. Talkin Tootsie is a 5-year-old daughter of Cantab Hall from the Westgate Crown mare Minnesota Carol who carries the banner of Martin Garey and Henry Wieseneck, takes her lessons from Bob Johnson and will once again have Mooney Svendsen giving directions. Two weeks ago in the Open Trot, Talkin Tootsie was patient early, began to pick up momentum turning for home and hung a neck decision on the 1-5 Pridecrest in a 1:57 2/5 performance. In last week's clash at the head of the trotting class, Pridecrest returning to his winning ways with a coast-to-coast score, while Talkin Tootsie sat the pocket and had to settle for third that evening. Silverlode was up to nail her for the place money in that affair and like Talkin Tootsie will appreciate getting away from Pridecrest. She is a 9-year-old British Sterling homebred who races for the Desomer Stables with Vickie Desomer conditioning and Steve Wiseman in the sulky. Completing the field are Silverhill Volo, The Evictor, Franks Best, Windsun Galaxie and Dougs Hobby Horse. By Mark Ratzky, publicity - Cal Expo Harness

Harness racing trainer Jessie Pacheco had a night to remember at Cal Expo last Saturday, as he sent out the winners of the Lonnie Beck Final and the Open Pace, with those horses returning $55 and $28, respectively. Cantholdmebackmack got the ball rolling in the Beck Final with William Hernandez at the controls. He looped the field to be up by a half-length in a 1:53 1/5 tour of the Cal Expo oval. A couple of hours later, the Pacheco-trained I'm An Athlete was posing for pictures after his upset score in the Open Pace with James Kennedy at the helm, igniting when it counted to win going away by a length and a half in a 1:52 3/5 mile. Cantholdmebackmack is owned and trained by Pacheco and was returning to the sharp form that saw him capturing an opening leg of the Shelly Goudreau earlier in the meet, while I'm An Athlete has been a major player around these parts for several years while carrying the banner of Ronald Rettig-Zucchi. Hernandez, by the way, added another lighting up of the toteboard a bit later in the evening when he posted a $52 score with Lucky Jewel in a conditioned affair for trainer Junior Wilkinson. That kind of thing will definitely make you the delight of the longshot players. *** The guaranteed gross pool for the 20-cent Pick 4 has now been raised to $40,000. Both the Pick 4 and the 50-cent Pick 5 here at Cal Expo offer a reduced 16 percent takeout rate. I'm An Athlete seeks Open Pace encore I'm An Athlete, fresh from an upset at the head of the class, looks for a repeat mile in Saturday night's featured $6,000 Open Pace. A 12-race program is on tap under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 6:10 p.m. The main event will go as the third event on the evening. I'm An Athlete is an 8-year-old son of Art Major out of the Cam's Card Shark mare Female Champs who races for Ronand Rettig-Zucchi, is conditioned by Jessie Pacheco and will be handled by James Kennedy. In last week's top dance while leaving from the demanding outside post in the field of nine, the veteran left into a mid-pack spot, tracked the swift fractions to the stretch and came home smartly to seal the deal by a length and a half in a 1:52 3/5 performance. Completing the exacta in that affair behind the 13-1 I'm An Athlete was the 15-1 Almost Cut My Hair. This 4-year-old goes about his business for owner Hank Wieseneck, trainer Bob Johnson and driver Nick Roland and has posed for snapshots following two of his last five outings. Last of the nine in the early stages of last week's top dance which saw blazing fractions of :26, 55 1/5 and 1:24, Almost Cut My Hair put in a strong late move to be up the place spot. Rounding out the cast are Ragin's Flight with Steve Wiseman; Cantholdbackthemack with William Hernandez; Eastender for Luke Plano; and Jazzmanian Devil, who will have the services of Mooney Svendsen. By Mark Ratzky, publicity - Cal Expo Harness

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