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Matt Kakaley saw many of McWicked's victories during the horse's Dan Patch Award-winning campaign in 2014, but not from a favorable vantage point. Kakaley drove horses that lost nine times to McWicked that season, which culminated with McWicked being named harness racing's best 3-year-old male pacer. Last weekend McWicked won again, but this time Kakaley was much happier with the view. Kakaley began driving McWicked three weeks ago in the George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series and the two teamed to advance to Saturday's $529,000 championship at Yonkers Raceway by getting last week's crucial triumph following two second-place finishes. "It's cool how it's worked out where I finally get to drive him," Kakaley said. "I raced against him many, many times and he usually beat me every time I raced him. I think I got the better of him once or twice. "This has worked out good. He's getting sharp at the right time. He was super the other night."McWicked will start Saturday's Levy final from post No. 1 and is the 3-1 second choice on the morning line behind favorite Somewhere In L A, who enters the race off back-to-back victories. Missile J, the only three-time winner in the event's five preliminary rounds, is 4-1 while defending champion Bit Of A Legend N is 5-1. "It's going to be a good race," Kakaley said. "It's a good group of horses. Missile J is the one to beat, but Somewhere In L A has been racing good, Bit Of A Legend has been racing good. I don't think any one horse lays over (the field). There are probably four or five that have a really big shot." McWicked, owned by Ed James and trained since last year by Steve Elliott, was stymied at ages 4 and 5 by throat issues that resulted in two surgeries. This year, the 6-year-old son of McArdle-Western Sahara has won three of seven races and earned $71,000 to push his career purses to $1.83 million. Kakaley and McWicked needed last Saturday's win to secure a place in the Levy final. A week after losing by a nose to Clear Vision in a gate-to-wire attempt, McWicked rallied from four-lengths back at the half to win by three-quarters of a length over Caviart Luca. "He's been getting better and better each start," Kakaley said. "The (previous) start, when I had him on the front, he was just kind of waiting on a horse and Clear Vision got him. I asked Steve to make a little bridle change and he was sharp. He was super. "He's getting right at the right time for this series and the rail always helps at Yonkers. He's just a pleasure to drive. He'll do anything you want. He's all professional. Steve has got him really good right now. Hopefully I can work out a good trip and give him a big chance to get the job done." Two races prior to the Levy championship, Kakaley will drive Medusa in the $310,600 Blue Chip Matchmaker Series final. Medusa, who had one win in the five preliminary rounds for trainer Andrew Federico Jr. and owners Randy Bendis and Tom Pollack, is 20-1 on the morning line from post six. Mach It A Par, who shared the points lead in the prelims with Shesjustadelight N, is the 2-1 choice from post three. Regil Elektra, a three-time winner in the series, is 5-2 from post five and Shesjustadelight N is 4-1 from post two. "I wasn't too thrilled about the draw," Kakaley said. "She drew outside a couple of the main contenders. But she's been really good. She was really sharp when she won and she was really good last week, I just didn't really have much room up the passing lane. But she finished with a good amount of steam. "I was really looking forward to her being a live shot in there. Hopefully things will work out because she's been good. I think she still has a shot; she just needs the race to set up for her." Complete entries for the Saturday races at Yonkers can be found by clicking on this link. Ken Weingartner Media Relations Manager

DOVER, Del.--- McArdles Lightning came up big in the $30,000 Preferred Handicap as John Campbell reined a 1:50.2 harness racing triumph at Dover Downs on Thursday, March 2. With six of the seven starters in the week's top pace owning career records lower than 1:50 and three of his rivals fresh from victories in their most recent outings, McArdles Lightning came to the outside and rushed up the backstretch to challenge front-pacing Always At My Place (Yannick Gingras) around the final turn and then pull away with Wakizashi Hanover (Tim Tetrick) and Missle J (Jonathan Roberts) right behind and closing fast, but not quick enough to catch McArdles Lightning and Campbell in 1:50.3. The feature-race win was the first in two starts this year for McArdles Lightning, a five-year-old trained by Steve Elliott for owner Lightning Stable. It was the McArdle-Winning Venture ridgling's 17th career win and $374,426 bankroll. Wakizashi Hanover edged Missile J for second money ending a four-race win streak by Missile J. In the $27,500 Delaware Special Handicap, Emeritus Maximus has emerged as the biggest surprise of the meet. Yannick Gingras took to the outside after the half and rolled from mid-pack to overtake leader Seventh Secret (George Dennis) reaching the final turn and then pulled away to an impressive 1:50.3 victory. Captive Audience (Tetrick) was runner-up with Mustang Art (Campbell) the show horse. Emeritus Maximus, a son of Rocknroll Hanover-Eternity's Delight, was claimed in mid-January for $15,000 and since has won four times stepping up the ladder to the Delaware Special ranks. He has won for his new owners $46,895 in purses including a 1:50 win last week. This was his 20th in his career and brings the seven-year-old to $456,375 lifetime. Delaware-bred Remember Me VK was the longshot in the $20,000 Open pace. The Art Director-All Memory gelding owned by Sharon Wyatt, breeders Robin West and Ron Barton was a 13-1 shot but moving from an outside post to post 2 was helpful. Montrell Teague zoomed Remember Me VK three wide after the three-quarters to snatch the lead and then had just enough to nip fast-finishing Nike Franco N (Tetrick) by a nose in 1:51.3. The loss was the first in the U.S. for the New Zealand standout who had won all four of her starts on this side of the Pacific. Star Messenger (Art Stafford Jr.) continues to impress. Claimed in late December for $20,000 by trainer Gary Ewing, the three-time 2017 wining gelding was a strong third. In other undercard happening, Mildred Ventriglio's Major Uptrend made it two wins-in-a-row scoring a 1:50.1 decision for Tony Morgan, racing for $15,500. --- Brit Evans' Denslow Hanover gave Allan Davis a double in 1:52 in another $15,500 event --- Bret Brittingham drove Betty Brittingham's Tip It On Back to his third victory in his last four starts in a $15,000 pace. A tote delay in mid program took more than a half-hour before being rectified. Corey Callahan, Vic Kirby, Allan Davis and trainer Dylan Davis had two wins apiece. Monday through Thursday post time is 4:30 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are dark days. Parking and admission at Dover Downs is free. Reservations are suggested for the popular Winner's Circle Restaurant and its acclaimed Buffet. . For reservations, call 302-674-4600. Simulcasting of top harness and thoroughbred racing is available in the Dover Downs Racing and Sports Book, from 12 Noon to 12 Midnight daily. Marv Bachrad  

Pompano Beach, FL…February 12, 2017…The highly anticipated 2017 harness racing debut of McWicked proved to be highly successful as the now six year-old son of McArdle scored a 1:50.4 win in Pompano Park’s $12,000 Open Handicap Pace “Romp at the Pomp” Pace on Sunday night (February 12). David Miller, also making his 2017 driving debut, was in the bike for the victory, the 12,027th of his Hall of Fame career. Facing a stout field of competitors including the highly vaunted Panocchio, McWicked took command three-eighths into the mile and went on to score by three-parts-of-a-length over that main rival with Rocky’s Z Tam just another neck back in third. Drachan Hanover finished fourth while Uncmprmising Z Tam finished fifth—those next four less than two lengths off the winner in the classy sextet. As the outset, Rocky’s Z Tam, with Ricky Macomber, Jr. in the bike, pushed the Hummer Starting Gate’s wings out of the way with Panocchio, starting from the outside six post with driver Wally Hennessey, surging right alongside and into the lead heading into the initial turn and proceeding to an opener in a hot :26.3 with McWicked settling into third—but not for long. Once they straightened away in the lane for the first time, Miller sent McWicked in search of the lead, taking command under the line the first time and then going on to post a half in :54.4 and three-quarters in 1:23.2 with Panocchio sitting chilly and Rocky’s Z Tam outside and charging. In the lane, Rocky’s Z Tam got within a long neck of McWicked and Panocchio snuck through along the pylons but neither could seriously threaten the leader to the wire as he sealed the deal with a :27.2 finale. In a post-race interview, driver David Miller related, “I thought he raced very well for his first time back. I was fortunate enough to drive him as a three year-old and he put in some awesome miles back then, especially when he went that mile in 1:47.3 with a last half in :52.3. He was great all the way to December when he won the Progress Pace (Dover Downs) in (1):48.4. “Tonight, he didn’t have any breathing situations that had bothered him the past couple of seasons and he was solid all the way through. It was a very good effort, especially for his first start back!” Owned by the S S G Stables’ Ed James, McWicked won for the first time since that aforementioned Progress Pace on December 7, 2014 and Mr. James was elated with the win saying, “I have been in this business for over 60 years and the thrill of reaching the winner’s circle never gets old. I am sure glad I was here at Pompano to see this win.” Trainer Jim McDonald was also elated with the victory saying, “This horse may have been the favorite on the tote-board here tonight but he sure was a long-shot to regain his winning ways. “He developed a breathing problem and it took some time to address the problem and then cure it. He seems like his old self again and we hope the progress continues. McWicked now sports a lifetime bankroll of $1,767,487. As the 2 to 5 post-time favorite, McWicked paid $2.80 to his multitude of followers. The $10,000 Open 2 Pace went to Rockntouch, skillfully handled by Mickey McNichol. The five year-old gelded son of Rock N Roll Heaven, in the garden spot as Fritzie Pic Up Man (Kevin Wallis) spun through panels of :26.2, :55.2 and 1:22.3 and sitting chilly a Grande Seelster challenged around the final bend, found some room in deep stretch to, first, get by the leader and, then, hold off the late surge of King Of The Crop (Dave Ingraham) to score by a head in a lifetime best 1:51.2. Fritzie Pic Up Man did finish third, a half length away, while Dee's Rocketman finished fourth, The favorite, Bluehourpower, picked up the nickel in an "even-steven" effort after a three week respite due to injury. Owned by Fred Monteleone Stable along with Salvatore Promuto, Rockntouch scored his second win of this semester and 15th success lifetime. He's now banked $119,595 career-wise--$13,175 this young season. As the 4 to 1 second choice, Rockntouch paid $10.40 to win. Though McWicked and David Miller were in the spotlight with his "Romp at the Pomp" win, the driving star of the night was Wally Hennessey, who drove six winners on the Sunday night program. The Hall of Fame Driver scored with Tick Tok Tag ($3.60), Tony Cheesecake ($6.60), Officernagentleman ($2.80) Whogoesfirst ($6.60), B Evas Lucky Lad ($6.20) and Del Rio Seelster ($3.60). The latter won the Super Hi-5 final, which had multiple winners, now sports a carryover of $70,526 going into Monday night's program. That card also features a $10,000 guaranteed pool for the Pick-4, conducted on races 6 through 9. Post time set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park

Lightly raced seven-year-old gelding Allies Mate delivered a Group 3 harness racing triumph to his connections, trainer Alan Donohoe and reinsman Chris Alford at Tabcorp Park Melton on Saturday night. The son of McArdle out of Fake Left mare Mon Repos scored a neck victory in the Gordon Rothacker Memorial Championship Final with a 1:54.2 run. There were great scenes trackside as Allies Mate's connections celebrated the win enthusiastically.  From gate five in the 1720-metre dash Alford had Allies Mate one-by-one at the 1200m mark after Zermanion ran by early leader Bazzas Art to get the top and Egodan whipped to the chair  from his back-row draw. When Im Lonely took off three-wide down the back stretch Alford stayed in and held the back of Egodan, who hit the front for Rod Petroff at the quarter pole, allowing Alford room to swing three-deep on the home corner. Once Egodan and Allies Mate hit top gear for the final fight to the wire it was Allies Mate who out-sprinted his rival, the last quarter 27.3 and last half 55.7 as Allies Mate notched his seventh career win and took his stake earnings in excess of $50,000. Egodan was game in second, with Im Lonely third for Greg Sugars and consistent Hollys Miss Molly fourth for Robbie Walters. Earlier on the card Metro Mike (Metropolitan-Tuscan Skies) took out the Pridemore Electrics Sokyola Sprint over 1720m in 1:53.9 courtesy of a 26.5 last quarter (55.1 last half). Major Secret initially led from barrier three, but Metro Mike and driver Jason Lee came around early and dashed to the front from his back-row draw, giving the Emma Stewart-trained stablemates the lead and box-seat positions. Once in front, Metro Mike dictated and ripped up the lane to hold off an audacious  Im Corzin Terror, whose run was super in second, and Major Secret, who couldn’t come on to challenge the leader once he’d surrendered the front. Veteran Smudge Bromac was fourth. Metro Mike’s win gave Lee a double in the cart, as he also drove Desdon Murruffy (Mordern Art-Spellmaker) to an all-the-way win in the Cogs Services Pace for trainer Matthew Craven, which also gave Craven a winning double after he trained and drove El Paco (Yankee Paco-Kellybrooke) to take out the Aldebaran Park Chris Howe Trotters Cup over 2240m in 1:58.2. Long odds-on favourite Maori Time dropped out sharply to only beat the ill-behaved My Tribeca over the line and the vet will check the Brent Lilley star mare to ensure all is well moving forward. The Boss Man finished second for Scott Dyer and Ellen Tormey in the Trotters Cup, producing a brave performance to only just get pipped at the post, with Hinault – a stablemate of the winner – finishing third. Metro Mike’s win also gave trainer Emma Stewart a winning double at Melton because her five-year-old Mach Three-Star Chaser mare Our Star Dust won the DNR Logistics Pace for Chris Alford. That win was the first leg of a winning double for Alford, too, given his later success with Allies Mate. Another driver in great form is Greg Sugars, who also walked away with a winning double courtesy of six-year-old Modern Art-Bella Aurora gelding Heza Modern Guy winning the HERO Life After Racing Pace for trainer Kari Males, and Fairest Fella (Artistic Fella-Mirra Mirra) winning the Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Country Series E Final for trainer Michael Hughes from barrier 13. Other winners were five-year-old Elsu-Fluffy Handcuffs gelding Feel The Buzz for Maro Stella and Brad Chisholm in the Pace Final, flying mare Zibibbo (Shadow Play-Karamea Dreaming) in the Allied Express Transport 4YO Pace for Kerryn Manning, and unbeaten three-year-old Star Of Memphis (Rock N Roll Heaven-Star Of Venus) for Andy and Kate Gath in the SBG Accountants Pace to finish the night. Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

DOVER, Del.---Nike Franco N and Lightning Mach N, a pair of New Zealand ex-patriots, turned in impressive harness racing victories in feature paces while driver Yannick Gingras, trainer Josh Green teamed for four victories with owner Rich Lombardo joining them in the winner's circle three times each to highlight Tuesday, Nov. 1 racing at Dover Downs. Tim Tetrick bidded his time driving Nike Franco N in the $20,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap pace before taking the American-sired McArdle-Nearea Franco six-year-old to the outside from sixth and overpowered her seven rivals for a 1:51.2 score in the feature for trainer Jim King and owner Rich Pollucci. Empress Deo (Allan Davis) got up for second in front of Nat A Virgin (Corey Callahan). The win is the second since crossing the Pacific. On both continents, the high-class mare has earned $110,429 this year and $340,243 lifetime. Lightning Mach N was equally impressive driven by Yannick Gingras in her 1:51.1 conquest in a $13,500 3,4&5-Year-Old Filly and Mare pace. Enhance Your Mind O (Vic Kirby) was runner-up with Art Of Dancing (Art Stafford Jr.) third. Tony Morgan guided Dave Banks and Layfield Horses' OnYour Six to her third win in four starts recording a 1:52 lifetime best in the $15,500 event for young females. Richard Lewis conditions the sophomore daughter of Yankee Cruiser-Armbro Winter to her fourth win of the season. Terror At Night (Jim Morand) led early and finished second. Girlofyourdreams (Tetrick) was third. Sayulita was a 13-1 winner for Corey Callahan. The Somebeachsomewhere three-year-old was the first of two wins for trainer Lewis and owners Banks and Layfield Horses. Hostess Lisa (Morgan) and Annabeth (Stafford Jr.) finished second and third respectively. In a $10,500 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund freshman preview, Logan's Girl won in personal best time of 1:54.4 for driver Vic Kirby, trainer Jim King and owner JoAnn Looney King. It was the Roddy's Bags Again-All Italian filly's fifth win in six starts. She's No Spinster (A.Davis) was second. Westwind Roddylee (Morgan) third. Allan Davis had a driving triple. Wednesday is trot day at Dover Downs. Maestro Blue Chip and Theresademoninme drew outside posts in the $20,000 Open Handicap trot feature. Four lucrative Matron two-year-old finals head Thursday racing. Weekday post time for Monday through Thursday racing is 4:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday are dark days. Sundays in November, racing begins a 5:30 p.m. Parking and admission are free. Reservations are suggested for the Winner's Circle Restaurant acclaimed Buffet and for the 4-star Dover Downs Hotel. Call 302-674-4600. Marv Bachrad

WALES, UK - The annual Brightwells Mixed Standardbred Sale set records on Monday with a total of £254,940. This was significantly more than the £164,700 spent in 2015, with the top 10 yearlings on Monday averaging £17,900. The sale topper and rightly so was the dark bay colt, Matticulous. This son of Hasty Hall topped the sale at Brightwells with a winning bid of £32,000. Matticulous is the full brother of champion pacer Titanium and a half-brother to champion Miraculous. He was purchased by the BKB Racing Syndicate of Wales, UK. It was Derek and James Delaney's Oakwood Stud's Oakwood Playboy who created a great deal of interest and was the second highest priced yearling at £30,000.. This yearling by McArdle was snapped up by Joel Richard's Wye Stud Farm in Herefordshire. "I think that the sale was of a very high standard across the board." Said Oakwood Stud's Derek Delaney. "The quality of yearlings was the best I have seen for sale in the UK. The market for well-bred yearlings is on the up. I will definitely be bringing some fantastic prospects to Brightwells in 2017". Oakwood Stud's four yearlings was the best average of the breeding farms this year at £13,475. Rhyds Farm was second with seven selling for and average of £11,385 while the average total yearling price this year at Brightwells was £7,541. The Rhyds Farm yearlings, as ever, were very popular and Rhyds Shoofly was the top sell filly at £19,000. She is sired by Hasty Hall and is a half-sister to last year's sales topper and champion two-year-old this season, Rhyds Ideal. Rhyds Shoofly was purchased by William Flanagan from the Meadowbranch Stud Farm in Ireland. To view the sales results go to By Steven Wolf, for Harnesslink

Derek and James Delaney’s Oakwood Stud is ready for next week’s Brightwells Mixed Sale at Royal Welsh Showground in Builth, Wales with five top yearlings going into the auction ring.The sale takes place Monday, October 24 at 11:00 am. “This is just the beginning for us at Oakwood Stud,” said Derek Delaney. “We have five well-bred and great looking yearlings ready for the sale and by next year we will have maybe a dozen or so, many sired by our own Foreclosure N. It’s been a few years in developing but James and I are very proud of where Oakwood Stud is going.” The first Oakwood Stud yearling to head to the ring is Lot 50, Oakwood Playboy, a brown colt by McArdle from The Panderosa mare, Only Gossip. Oakwood Playboy is a full brother to McCedes p, 1:49.3 ($1.3 million); McCito p,1:52 ($125,000) and a full sister to the fastest mare in all of North America last year, Hot List p,1:48.2 ($405,000). Here is video of Oakwood Playboy Next up is Lot 51, Oakwood Writeontime, a brown colt by Sportwriter from The Panderosa mare, Abbey Won. This mare has already produced nearly $2 million in winning foals including Bettors Glass, p,1:48.4 ($489,000); On The Glass p,1:49 ($757,000); Art Glass p,1:51.4 ($257,000) and Glass In The Sand p,1:53.4 ($54,000).  Abbey Won is also a full or half-sister to pacing greats Mystical Mike p,1:51.2; Manvers Short Cut p,1:51.3; Cut Throat p,1:51.3, Artistry p,1:53.1 and Major Glass p,1:53.4. Here is video on Oakwood Writeontime Next up for Oakwood Stud in the sale is Lot 65, Oakwood Ideal, a bay colt by Western Ideal from the Jenna’s Beach Boy mare, Dreamlands Hardie. Oakwood Ideal is a full or half-brother to top performers Livestrong p,1:50.4 ($572,000); Mylivmylife p,1:50.4 ($450,000); Dreamlands Latte p,1:52.3 ($226,000). Of Dreamlands Hardie’s last 11 foals, 8 have all been winners at age 2. Here is video on Oakwood Ideal Lot 66 features Oakwood Spur, who is a bay colt sired by Share The Delight from the Life Sign mare, Olympic Sign, whose dam was none other than the great world champion mare, Nadia Lobell p3,1:53.4 and over $1 million in earnings. Oakwood Spur is a brother to Brooklyn’s Best p,1:52.4 ($150,000) and Signs of Terror p,1:57.3. Here is video on Oakwood Spur The last of the Oakwood Stud consignment is Lot 67 and the lone filly of the group, Oakwood Delight. This bay filly is sired by Share The Delight from the Four Starzzz Shark mare Oakwood Alanah. This is only the second foal from Oakwood Alanah, whose damn, Eternal Prophecy is a full sister to Immortality p,1:51.2 ($1.6 million) and the dam of top foals Captain Mo p,1:51.2 ($500,000) and McGwire p,1:53.2 ($250,000). Here is video of Oakwood Delight It should be noted that all Oakwood yearlings bred by USA stallions have been staked well in North America. Just a reminder for those of you that cannot be at the sale that you can bid by telephone or by leaving a commission. For more information email to welsh@brightwells.com “After the great results at the York Raceway Sale two weeks ago,” Delaney said, “We feel that Brightwells will be very strong. And with so many additional racing opportunities and raised purses for young horses next year, we think the yearlings this season could break all the sales records.” By Steve Wolf, for Oakwood Stud

HARRINGTON, Del. - Richard Polluci's Nike Franco N ($4, Tim Tetrick) won her North American harness racing debut Tuesday with a 1:53 effort in the featured $17,700 Fillies and Mares Open at Harrington Raceway. The 6-year-old McArdle mare came to the states with an impressive resume “down under” and did not disappoint in her local debut with a powerful second-over surge that saw her grab the lead near the top of the stretch and draw off from her rivals. Miss Me Yet was second, while Mcarma finished third. The winner was trained by Jo Ann Looney-King, who was in the winner's circle approximately an hour earlier for the exploits of another mare in her stable. After the third race, King's Purrfect Bags was awarded Horse of the Meet by the United States Harness Writers Association's Delaware Valley Chapter. The Roddy's Bags Again mare is trained by the husband/wife team of Jim King Jr. and Looney-King and was the highest overnight money earner at the Harrington meet with nearly $65,000. She won six races at the meet. King also won the ninth race with End To End Hanover ($4) in 1:54.2. In the third and fourth races, trainer and co-owner Vincent Bradley had consecutive mares win while establishing new lifetime marks. In The Shadows ($3, Tony Morgan, 1:53.3) and Matinee Dragon ($6, Allan Davis, 1:52.1) both authored new personal bests for Bradley and co-owner Louis Catana. Matthew Sparacino

WILKES-BARRE PA - Allbeef N Nobull and Bourbon Bay, which sounds like a very good dinner, were the winners of the $15,500 featured harness racing events on the pace and trot, respectively, on Saturday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Allbeef N Nobull swung four-wide headstretch from third-over and, still some 3 1/2 lengths out approaching midstretch, took advantage of a big late kick and a helping tailwind to run down YS Lotus in the final strides to post a neck tally in 1:51.2. The son of McArdle showed precociousness since his earliest racetrack days, where on July 9 of his freshman year he debuted with a 1:59.2 - 28.4 win at the Martinville IL Fair, and he has continued that ability to run his bankroll to $288,872 one start shy of his fiftieth race, winning tonight for driver Mike Simons, trainer Ron Burke, and the partnership of Burke Racing Stable LLC, Donald Eamon, Howard Taylor, and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. In contrast to the hard late charge Allbeef N Nobull put in to gain his victory, the Sand Vic gelding Bourbon Bay had an easier time in taking his feature, leaving in 27 to discourage any early challengers, continuing on quickly and hitting the wire in the clear while posting a time of 1:52.3. Anthony Napolitano had sulky duty behind the winner of $238,048 for trainer Ake Svanstedt, who assumed the trotter's training four starts back and already has rung up two wins and a third with him for Our Horse Cents Stables, JT45, J&T Silva Stables LLC, and Rossie Smith. FINISHING LINES - Pocono's and Philadelphia's strength were evident through the Grand Circuit card at Lexington's Red Mile on Saturday. Huntsville and Downbytheseaside, respectively 1-2 in the recent Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Championship and both by Somebeachsomewhere, both equaled the world record for two-year-olds of 1:49 first set by Pocono's co-track recordholder Sweet Lou; in another division of this two-year-old colt pacing stake, the Dragon Again gelding Dragnet Alert, trained by Oakes, set a divisional world record of 1:49.2. The other division of this stakes was won by Chip Walther, trained by Erv Miller and driven by his son Marcus, King of the Pocono Longshots - who paid $84.80, or less than half of what baby filly Zane Hanover paid ($189.80) for Miller and Miller in a division of the filly stake one race before Chip Walther won! The Napolitano brothers were dominant at Pocono Saturday, with Anthony recording five victories and George Jr., one ahead of his brother atop the local driving standings, visiting Victory Lane four times. Jim Marohn Jr. continued a hot recent hand with three scores; the evening's other two winners were driven by Mike Simons and Eric Carlson, and the way the aforementioned trio were going, it may not be surprising to learn that Carlson and Simons handled the two longest-priced horses of the night. PHHA / Pocono      

The two major Standardbred Yearling Sales in the UK and Ireland will take place in October and buyers will be pleased to know that their purchases will be racing for the richest stakes purses ever in 2017. Depending on what stakes races each yearling has been nominated to or will be eligible for nomination, racing opportunities for two-year-old’s next season will be on the rise. The first sale takes place at York Harness Raceway on Saturday, October 8 and the Camden Stud Sale will feature mainly yearlings and some older horses going under the hammer starting at 11:00 am. There will also be a race meet at York that afternoon. The sale includes yearlings by notable sires which include Bettors Delight, Mypanmar, Hasty Hall, and the first crop from the exciting prospect Art Professor.  A number of Trotteur Francais are also available, eligible for both the British and Irish Le Trot Series’. Sale catalogues can be purchased from Sarah Thomas in person at Tir Prince Raceway (Saturday 24th September), Corbiewood Stadium (Sunday 25th September), York Harness Raceway (Saturday 1st October), or from Sue Young at Almeley (Sunday 25th September).  Alternatively, catalogues can be posted to residents within the UK and also Ireland. The second sale is the Brightwells Standardbred Sale taking place on Monday, October 24. This sale will feature not just yearlings, but also broodmares and horses in and out of training. There is still time for late entries (October 19) to be made. The Brightwells Sale has featured the highest priced yearlings in the history of Ireland and the UK the last two years. This year’s sale is headed by yearlings sired by world champion stallions Art Major, Bettors Delight, McArdle, Share The Delight, Rock N Roll Heaven, Hasty Hall, Sportswriter, Western Ideal, Roll With Joe and many more. For more information click here.   All yearlings would be eligible to the Vincent Delaney Memorial (VDM), which is the richest stakes event in all of Ireland and the UK. This past year was the first time that the VDM featured both a colt and filly division. With new sponsor Hanover Shoe Farms for the colts and Diamond Creek Farm sponsoring the filly division for the second straight year, those two finals will each go for €20,000 in 2017 and each elimination division will race for €2,000. Also the Alabar-Oakwood 3YO Derby has also increased and for the first time, with sponsorship from Alabar Stud down under, will now feature separate finals for both colts and filly’s. Foals will also be eligible for the Irish Sire Stakes, which is being sponsored again by Brian Doyle Air Cargo for the third straight year, the Breeders Crown UK & Ireland, which president David Wilson said will also see increased purses in 2017 in all divisions, the British Harness Racing Club Sire Stakes and other special stakes events throughout the UK. by Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink

WILKES-BARRE PA - It may not be the optimal way to get tight - making two moves in a Sire Stakes race against Valley Forge harness racing winner Darlinonthebeach - but the McArdle filly Lispatty was certainly ready in her next start, the $15,500 featured distaff pace on Tuesday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, quarter-moving to the lead and then winning by five lengths in 1:50, knocking over two seconds off her lifetime mark.   Envious Hanover and Single Me were a distant next-closest at the wire to Lispatty, who was driven by Anthony Napolitano for trainer Gilbert Garcia-Herrera, who was completing a training double, with his winning chargers driven by different Napolitano brothers - George had guided the early winner. Lispatty, who has an outside chance to make her Sire Stakes final and a very good chance to make her Sires consolation, is owned by Garcia-Herrera's son Gilbert Garcia-Owen, who got his trainer's license recently and is doing well guiding the fortunes of the Garcia-Herrera string at Philadelphia.   The 1:50 clocking of Lispatty was bettered in a $14,000 conditioned pace for females, as Gallie Bythe Beach posted her second straight victory, with her Tuesday time of 1:49.1 just a tick off her lifetime mark. Mike Simons moved the impeccably-bred (Somebeachsomewhere-Galleria) mare to the lead past the quarter, and Gallie Bythe Beach took it from there, storming home in 54.2 to win by six lengths for trainer John Campbell and Fashion Farms LLC, who saw their mare come within an eyelash of the $750,000 career earnings plateau ($749,898 is now her actual number).   PHHA / Pocono      

Scotch McEwan romped to victory in the third leg of the harness racing Ohio Sires Stakes action on August 16 for driver Josh Sutton and trainer Bill Dailey, pacing in 1:53.2, just slightly slower than the 1:52.3 track record he had set on July 28.   A total of nine $40,000 Ohio Sire Stakes divisions for 2-year-old trotting and pacing colts were contested at the five-eighth's mile oval on a rainy and steamy Tuesday afternoon.   The bay gelding's 1:52.3 clocking and this latest sizzler didn't come as a surprise to breeders Brad Wallace or Kevin Greenfield, who own and operate Hickory Lane Farm in Findlay, Ohio, where the colt was born and raised.   "Rebecca Ewing, who bred Scotch McEwan is the wife of Leonard Buckner, who owns Hickory Lane in partnership with us," Kevin explained. "We're not surprised at this colt as he just doesn't seem to know how fast he is yet. In his last start he was parked out the entire mile and staved off three challenges. Josh (driver Sutton) said the colt wasn't really even paying attention at the end of the mile, either, or he might have gone faster."   Brad agreed.   "When this colt was in the yearling sale, a lot of trainers passed him up, and didn't seem to like him for whatever reason," Brad admitted. "Kevin and I were both kind of surprised because we really felt he was something special from day one."   Scotch McEwan brought a final bid of $30,000 at the 2015 Ohio Select Yearling Sale.   "We raised and raced his dam, Forever Ivy," Brad noted. "She was a gutsy, tough race mare who took a mark of 1:50.3f as a 5-year-old and earned $355,291. So we're not really surprised that this youngster would be fast as well."   Scotch McEwan is the first foal out of Forever Ivy and is from the first Ohio crop by McArdle, who stands at Hickory Lane Farm. Forever Ivy is by Stand Forever and is out of the Ruffstuff Baker broodmare She's A Ruff One p, 4, 1:53f ($137,549).   Interestingly enough, Forever Ivy is also a half-sister the 2-year-old pacing filly Lorenna's Ruffian (also by McArdle), who captured a Leg 1 Ohio Sires Stakes on July 3 at Northfield Park in 1:56.2.   Scotch McEwan now has $60,800 in his career bankroll from three wins and one third in five starts. He had captured Leg 1 of this series on July 4 at Scioto Downs in 1:55.2 by nearly five lengths, then finished third in Leg 2 at Northfield Park on July 11, timed in 1:54.1, before winning that Ohio Fair Stake at Scioto on July 28.   The 2-year-old trotting colt Buckeye Boss and the freshman pacing youngster Drunk On Your Love both continued their sweep of the series by winning their third OSS legs Tuesday at Scioto.   Buckeye Boss, a Chris Beaver trainee, romped to a 1:58.2 victory for Aaron Merriman. The son of Triumphant Caviar had prevailed in Leg 1 on July 4 at Scioto in 1:59 and on July 12 in Leg 2 at Northfield in 1:57 by nearly seven lengths. He then won an Ohio Fair Stake at Scioto on July 28 in 1:56.2. The winner of $82,750 is owned by Beaver along with Ohio-based breeder Marion Beachy and Synerco Ventures of Ontario.   Drunk On Your Love is a Foreclosure N colt who notched career win three in 1:55. Trained by Bill Dailey for Richard Lombardo, Carl & Melanie Atley and Josh Green, Drunk On Your Love won OSS Leg 1 at Scioto on July 4 in 1:54.3 and Leg 2 at Northfield on July 11 in 1:56.1. All of this youngster's triumphs have come in front-stepping fashion.   Ohio Sires Stakes return to Scioto Downs on Friday night, August 19, featuring 3-year-old filly trotters vying in Leg 4 of this series.   by Kimberly Rinker, OSDF Administrator

The multiply Group One winning mare Nike Franco, has been sold to North American interests for a substantial sum and has already arrived into the stable of high profile American harness racing trainer Jo Ann Looney-King in Delaware, Maryland. Trained by Victorian Dean Braun Nike Franco has raced in 18 Group races to-date. Her record stands at 33 starts for 18 wins and 11 placings for $392,000 in earnings. Nike Franco by McArdle is sensationally bred and is the first foal from the $439,376 Group One winning Badlands Hanover mare Nearea Franco who was the 2007/2008 4yo “Pacing Mare of the Year” and the 2008/2009 “Older Pacing Mare of the Year” in New Zealand. A yearling half-sister by Mach Three to Nike Franco sold for $70,000 at this year’s yearling sale in Christchurch. Nike Franco is closely related to world champion and “Horse of the Year” Beach Towel ($2,570,357). Nearea Franco, the dam of Nike Franco, is from the Abercrombie mare No Papa who is a half-sister to Beach Towel. There has probably never been a better performed mare than Nike Franco that has gone to North America, from Australia, or New Zealand for that matter, at such a young age with still so much to offer. At her last start Nike Franco won the Group One $100,000 Queen of Pacific Stakes over 2700 meters in a track record, beating the best mares in Australasia.  Four starts back she beat a field of top class boys in the Warragul Cup in a track record again and beat them fair and square. That field included Glenferrie Hood who went on to beat the best FFA horses in Australasia including Christen Me 1:49.1 ($2,390,000). Nike Franco won the $125,000 Group 1 Mares Classic at Gloucester Park on a half mile track beating all the best mares Down Under over 2130 meters in a 1:55 mile rate over the distance, at the last Inter Dominions. In her lead up to that race North American champion driver Tim Tetrick drove Nike Franco to win at Pinjarra, while he was in Australia for the Inter-Dominions. He was very impressed with her win. Other New Zealand mares that have been sold to North American interests in recent times and that have performed very well are;  Royal Cee Cee  NZ record,  11 starts for 4 wins $73,000 - USA  40 wins 21 seconds and 14 thirds for $1,149,752. Sell A Bit  NZ record,  34 starts for 9 wins $66,000 - USA  since August 2015, 19 wins 14 seconds and 9 thirds for $426,000. Al Raza NZ record,  25 starts 9 wins $69,000 - USA since September 2015, 17 wins 10 seconds 7 thirds for $323,000. If there was ever a mare to represent Australia and New Zealand in North America then this mare Nike Franco has the best chance to do exactly that. It is quite conceivable to see her winning a million dollars plus in North America if all goes well. Nike Franco was purchased by the well known racing identity Richard Poillucci of Boston who also bought Hambletonian Day winner Barimah (1:50.3) from Australia. Barimah was having only his third start in the USA. Harnesslink Media

Nike Franco’s position among Australia’s elite harness racing mares has been further entrenched with a powerful $100,000 Benstud Queen of the Pacific win at Tabcorp Park Melton. The five-year-old mare (by McArdle out of Nearea Franco) from Dean Braun’s Lara stables upstaged a quality line-up in the Group 1 mares’ classic, including former race winner Gumdrops and millionaire earner Frith. Nike Franco led for the majority of Saturday night’s 2760-metre journey and rated 1:56.5, finishing 1.9m clear of runner-up Milly Perez with third placegetter and race favourite Cyclone Kate 3.1m off the winner. RE-LIVE NIKE FRANCO’S QUEEN OF THE PACIFIC TRIUMPH “This mare’s so exciting,” an elated Braun said. “I’ve had some really good racehorses but this mare’s very special. “I said to Greg Sugars (Driver) that I thought I had her pretty right tonight … he drove her really well.” Nike Franco has won feature races in four Australian states, with two Oaks successes in Queensland – the Gold Coast and the Qld, the Raith Memorial in New South Wales, the rich Mares Classic in Western Australia, and this season’s Warragul Cup and now the Queen of the Pacific in Victoria. “To do what she did tonight was pretty special,” Braun said.   The victory capped a great night for Greg Sugars, who drove a winning treble and dual Group 1 successes after earlier securing the win in the Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Home Grown Classic Final for 2YO Trotting Fillies aboard Illawong Shimmer, trained by Greg’s father Ross. Illawong Shimmer (by Muscle Mass out of Shining Sun) is, as her name suggests, a member of trots owner Dr Martin Hartnett’s clan. “They deserve every win they get for what they put in,” Sugars said post-race of Hartnett and wife Kaye. Illawong Shimmer rated 2:01.2 for the 1720m trip to defeat Yankee Redback (Kerryn Manning) with Sval Queen (Anthony Butt) third. Deltasun won the night’s other Group 1, the colts and geldings’ trotters Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Home Grown Classic. Trained by former jockey Terry Young at Ararat, Deltasun (by Tennotrump out of Deltasu) handled the final corner better than race favourite Illawong Byron (Jodi Quinlan) and held a half-neck advantage over that horse on the line in a rate of 2:01.6, with Kheiron (Peter Lane) third. Sugars and Lang shared driving honours at Melton, each grabbing a treble. In addition to the abovementioned victories Sugars steered Anton Golino-trained Val Gardena (by Kadabra out of Lets Be Happy) to victory in the Haras Des Trotteurs Sweetheart Trot Final, while Lang guided former New South Wales Derby winner Major Secret (Art Major/Secret Life) home in the Best In Town Concreting Pace for Emma Stewart, and Hectorjayjay (Dream Away/Sheer Finesse) to victory in the Group 2 University Meat 4YO and 5YO Championship over 2240m. CHECK OUT ALL THE RESULTS & VIDEO REPLAYS FROM MELTON Other Melton winners were Little Lyn (by Jeremes Jet out of Rappa Scooter), a homebred mare raced and trained by Barry Dunn at Horsham and driven by son Aaron Dunn in the Service Sphere Pace, popular It Is Billy (by It Is I out of Glenlyon Glad) in the Crown Coffee International Golden Reign Free-for-All for trainer Michael Barby and driver Anne-Maree Conroy, Stoned I Am (by Sundon out of Stoned At Midnight) in the Seelite Windows and Doors Coulter Crown for trainer/driver Simone Walker, and in-form eight-year-old Might Be Luck (by Northern Luck out of Marilyns Might) in the Riddell Umpires Association Claiming Pace for trainer Beau Tindale and reinsman Michael Bellman. Victorians shine interstate Another week, another domination from the Emma Stewart stable – this time at Globe Derby, South Australia. The Smythes Creek trainer secured a winning treble on Saturday night at the SA home of metro trots racing, with unbeaten two-year-old filly Our Celebrity (by Mach Three out of Celebrity Ball) winning the Alabar/SA Botra 2YO Fillies Golden Nursery Final, impressive three-year-old Rocknroll Magic (by Rock N Roll Heaven out of All The Magic) taking out the Home Loans-Providing Solutions SA Botra 3YO Fillies Final, and Metro Mike (by Metropolitan out of Tuscan Skies) saluting in the Carbine Chemicals Pacers Dash over 1385m. CHECK OUT ALL THE RESULTS FROM GLOBE DERBY, SA All Stewart’s winners were driven by Mark Billinger, who picked up five winners for the night overall. Meanwhile, at Menangle in New South Wales, classy five-year-old trotting mare Claudys Princess (by Bacardi Lindy out of All Finesse) took out the Rio Meteor Race Sulky La Coocaracha (Group 3) with Darren Hancock in the cart for Kyabram trainer Mick Blackmore, and Golino-trained Pizza Queen (by Credit Winner out of Armbro Domino) won the Garrards Horse and Hound NSW Trotters Oaks for reinsman David Morris, upstaging race favourite High Gait in a thrilling finish. WATCH PIZZA QUEEN'S NSW TROTTERS OAKS SUCCESS Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)  

The final piece to this year's Molson Pace puzzle has fallen into place with the announcement that $1.7 million career winner McWicked will join seven other outstanding harness racing rivals in the $150,000 event next Friday night at The Raceway in London. The five-year-old son of McArdle, who now hails in the Steve Elliott Stable, will come into the race fresh off a pair of winning qualifiers and one pari-mutuel start this season. He finished just five lengths back of Always B Miki and Mel Mara in last weekend's flashy 1:48.4 mile in the Open Pace at The Meadowlands. McWicked took his 1:47.3 record at age three in winning the $500,000 Hempt Memorial Final at Pocono Downs. That same season, he posted victories in the Adios, Breeders Crown and Progress Pace Final and was voted Three-Year-Old Pacer of the Year in both Canada and the US. He has 15 wins and 35 on-the-board finishes to his credit in 44 career races. Rockin In Heaven, who was a recent fourth-place finisher in the Confederation, will be the 'also eligible' in the field in the event of a scratch. The combined earnings of this year's Molson Pace field is more than $9 million. "We are extremely happy with the field we've assembled considering we are in the midst of a very busy time in the season for older horses," said Racing Manager Greg Blanchard. "There are some familiar faces but some new ones in the mix this year. It's a very talented and well balanced field with plenty of half-mile prowess. It should produce not only a great race but a very enticing wagering proposition." The post position draw will take place this Monday on The Raceway's pre-game show which airs at 5:45 p.m. (E.T.) The Molson Pace undercard is a strong one, featuring four City of London Series Finals, a pair of Alliance Series finals and Gold divisions for three-year-old colt pacers in the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS). Total purses for the night will be more than $500,000. As always, there will be lots happening on track that night including Scratch and Win program prizes, OSS 'Be A Winner Contest', Party On The Patio, Molson VIP Infield event and much more. The wagering menu has been bolstered to include a $5,000 guaranteed early Pick-3, $10,000 guaranteed early Pick-4, $15,000 guaranteed late Pick-4 and the addition of a third Super Hi-5 - all low 15% takeout wagers. For full details, visit Here is this year's Molson Pace field in alphabetical order: All Bets Off Bettor Rock On N Evenin Of Pleasure Machtu N McWicked P H Super Cam State Treasurer Sunfire Blue Chip AE: Rockin In Heaven Greg Blanchard    

The beaten favorite in the recent Miss Pennsylvania Final at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, Darlinonthebeach, got some measure of revenge by winning one of three $30,000 Pennsylvania All-Stars divisions for harness racing three-year-old pacing fillies at The Downs Monday, not letting an unusually-patterned race keep her from a 1:51.3 victory. The other two divisions saw their victresses, I Said Diamonds and Shesasmokinlady, both take new lifetime marks of 1:50.4 in capturing their sections.   Princess Fabulosa outgunned everybody out of the gate in the first division, with 4-5 favorite Darlinonthebeach second but having an early problem, as Newborn Sassy, the 11-10 second choice, and Sail To The Beach were biding their time two-wide just to "Darlin"'s right until the early fireworks settled. Newborn Sassy made the lead at the 27.3 quarter, and here's where the sulky wheels were joined by the drivers' wheels starting to turn.   Sail To The Beach and John Campbell proceeded up towards the lead, but Darlinonthebeach and driver David Miller pulled out right behind them. Tim Tetrick, behind Newport Sassy, quickly did the math that "1+1+1=3=first-over," and since he didn't want to be in that position, he urged his filly on to keep the lead, leaving Sail To The Beach stuck two-wide and Darlinonthebeach temporarily three-wide as Miller did not want to lose momentum, thinking Sail To The Beach would go to the top.   Newborn Sassy retained the top at the half in 55 (27.2 second quarter, faster than the first and against the wind) after that mental sulky chess match, with Princess Fabulosa in the pocket and Darlinonthebeach backing off to second-over, and they went down the backstretch that way to a 1:22.4 3/4s. When left-out-first-over Sail To The Beach gave way on the far turn, Miller again had to go three-wide, while Princess Fabulosa (Jim Marohn Jr.) attacking in the stretch to the left of Newport Sassy. Darlinonthebeach showed grittiness, striding on to outfoot Newport Sassy by a neck, while 20-1 Princess Fabulosa another neck back in third.   The winner is a daughter of Somebeachsomewhere trained by Nancy Johansson for owner White Birch Farm.   The matter was much more tactically simple for second division winner I Said Diamonds. Driver Matt Kakaley fired her up early from the outermost post eight and grabbed the top after the 26.4 opener, posting middle splits of 55.3 and 1:23, then drawing clear on the turn to win by 3¼ lengths over another daughter of Well Said, I Said Please. The winner has never been off the board in nine career starts, and her 2016 record is now 3-2-1-0, the second in finishing behind Pure Country in the Miss Pennsylvania Final, for trainer Matias Ruiz and the ownership of Little Bapa LLC.   Like I Said Diamonds, Shesasmokinlady has now been 1-2-3 in nine career outings, running her record to 2-for-2 this season in taking the third division for trainer/driver Ray Paver (still thought of as "Tommy" or "Junior" to the older among us). The victorious smoke-colored daughter of McArdle was out well past the 26.3 first quarter, made the lead in front of the stands and then yielded to a brushing Eloquent Grace before the 54.2 half. 7-5 chalk Yankee Moonshine attacked first-over to the 1:22.2 3/4s, but when that foe backed off, 8-5 second choice Shesasmokinlady could come to the outside, go past the pacesetter, then hold off the late Pocono Pike thrust of 14-1 early leader Some Fancy Filly by a head. Iris Horowitz owns the late-developing and powerful-looking filly.   Pennsylvania All-Stars action for three-year-olds concludes tomorrow at Pocono, with three $30,000 divisions for trotting fillies the headliners.   PHHA / Pocono

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