Day At The Track
Search Results
1 to 16 of 113
1 2 3 4 5 Next »

Allmyx'sliventexas, a winner of 10 of his 11 starts at this meet, looms the overwhelming favorite in Saturday night's featured $10,000 Donald Arnstine Pace at Cal Expo Harness. Watch and Wager LLC will present 12 races beginning at 5:20 and the main event will go as the eighth event of the evening. The Arnstine is limited to performers who are Diamond Horse Alliance eligible. Allmyx'sliventexas is an 8-year-old homebred son of Hi Ho Silverheel's and the Distinguishedbaron mare Annie Get Your Gun who carries the banner of Wayne and Rod Knittel, takes his lesson from Bob Johnson and will have have Nick Roland guiding from the rail slot. He comes into this assignment with 49 wins from his 144 lifetime trips to the post and sports a 1:50 career standard that was established three years ago at Hoosier Park. Allmyx'sliventexas is eyeing his sixth straight victory in the Arnstine, with the last pair coming from the demanding No. 10 position. He was parked a long way to the lead in the most recent excursion from the stranded slot and prevailed by a measured head at the 3-5 favorite. Taking him on this weekend are Hi Ho Julio, Frewil Dakota Sven, Contemporay Legend, Its Pointless and Mystery Dragon. Race honors memory of Donald Arnstine Saturday's feature is named for longtime owner and industry activist Donald Arnstine, who passed away last September at age 85. He and his wife Barbara were involved in harness racing for five decades, claiming their first horse, Big Time, in 1973 with the Desomer Stable. Over the next several years they campaigned many stars from that barn, including Quaker Byrd. During the late 1970s and early 1980s, Donald Arnstine was active in the Western Standardbred Association, now known as the California Harness Horsemen's Association. He served as president of the organization in 1978, overseeing the legislation that created the state's sire stakes program, and he also helped negotiate horsemen's agreements with Los Alamitos, Hollywood Park, Bay Meadows and Cal Expo. After a hiatus, the Arnstines joined the Gilbert Herrera stable in a highly successful partnership that eventually expanded to the East Coast and included such top performers as Little Walter, Giveittomestraight, Fortunista and Yonkers track record holder Theartofconfusion A. After Herrera relocated, the Arnstines joined the Steve Wiseman/Kathie Plested stable and raced the likes of Party Hangover Two, Nutmegs Desire and state champion King of The Crop. Barbara Arnstine continues to campaign performers with the Plested barn. While Donald Arnstine had a full and successful life in academia, including a long and accomplished university teaching career and author, his passion was always his wife of 56 years, his children, his grandchildren and harness racing. By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness

Giggle Monster, victorious in seven of his nine trips to the post this harness racing season, will attempt to overcome the daunting No. 10 post as he heads the cast for Sunday night's pacing main event at Cal Expo Harness. There will be 12 races presented under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 4:50 p.m. Giggle Monster is a 6-year-old son of Wind Me Up who races for Set The Pace Racing LLC and is reined and trained by Nick Roland. He is 26-for-90 in his career and his most recent score two weeks ago lowered his lifetime mark to 1:52 3/5. Sent off the 9-5 choice in that February 28 contest, Giggle Monster was unhurried early, made a huge move off the final turn to sweep to command in the drive and went on to three-quarter lengths decision over Sin Machqueen, who will again be among his rivals on Sunday.   The latter is also having a strong year with four trips to the winner's circle from his eight appearances. Jacob Cutting drives and trains the 10-year-old Mach Three gelding, who is owned by Darryl Mason. His most recent trip to the charmed enclosure came on February 21, when he looped the field to pull off a 7-1 upset with Cutting. He established his 1:53 2/5 career standard over this strip earlier in the session. A reminder there are three wagers offered each night that come with a reduced 16 percent takeout rate - the 20-cent early and late Pick 5 and the 20-cent Pick 4, with the latter featuring a $25,000-guaranteed gross pool. Queenace Blue Chip Is Jack to his family Queenace Blue Chip made a game return to the races two weeks ago in his first start of the year, ending up on the right end of a photo to kick off 2021 in style with Mooney Svendsen. The 5-year-old is by Art Major out of the Cam's Card Shark mare Blackjack Princess, is co-owned by Barbara Arnstine, Steve Chambers and trainer Kathie Plested and sports a 1:52 1/5 mark that was set last season at Running Aces in Minnesota. "Our friend and trainer, Gilbert Herrera, sent Queenace Blue Chip to us because he simply wasn't ready for the stress of Yonkers and Pocono as a 3-year-old," Arnstine related. "Over the last year he's matured into a good horse for the Plested/Wiseman barn and that first race here showed his talent." Barbara revealed there is also another contribution she believes made his growth possible, one that is not so obvious. "He got a much better name," she explained. "His barn name is Blackjack, or Jack for short, and it's obvious he's enjoying this much more than Queen. For this owner, his success is a joy, but also why owning a race horse is a very humbling experience. "Much as you would like to be cool and smart when you arrive at the shedrow with carrots and congratulations, finding your horse without help can be difficult. That's because many of those horses have barn names, and since these come with care and affection, they are usually what they respond to, instead of the names they race under. "The horses in the Plested barn also move around a lot of take advantage of the sun and shade and horse friendships, and most of them are brown. So an owner finds themselves looking at a lot of brown horses in different locations with names that aren't in the program." Arnstine sums it up this way. "It's a lesson in humility, and a reminder that success rests on the work of others. He may be Queenace Blue Chip in the program, but he wins because his family calls him Jack." By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness

Allmyx'sliventexas, victorious in seven of his eight starts at this harness racing meet, is once again the horse to beat in Sunday night's $7,200 Open Pace at Cal Expo Harness. The headliner will go as the eighth on a 12-race card presented by Watch and Wager LLC and things get under way at 4:50 p.m. Allmyx'sliventexas is an 8-year-old Hi Ho Silverheel's homebred who races for Wayne and Rod Knittel, hails from the Bob Johnson shedrow and will be guided by Nick Roland from the outside post in the field of seven. The Knittel charge has accounted for 46 of his 141 lifetime appearances, he's looking to add to a $260,000 bankroll and set his 1:50 career mark at Hoosier Park three years ago. Allmyx'sliventexas kicked off this meeting with five straight trips to the charmed enclosure, with the richest of those scores coming in the December 11 Dave Goldschmidt Pace. He suffered his only setback at the stand when he was hung the mile on January 31 and tired. He has returned to prove best in his last two trips to the post, including the most recent when he withstood a strong challenge turning for home and then came home in smart fashion to secure the length and a quarter decision in a powerful 1:51 1/5 tour. Taking him on, from the rail out: Bngs Express with Tony Kerwood; Contemporary Legend, Mooney Svendsen; Super Pac Hanover for Cordarius Stewart; Hoo Nien, Gerry Longo; Buddy's Hope with Jake Cutting and Ponda's Prospect for Luke Plano. Second time around for Corbin in California Robert Corbin is enjoying his second winter at Cal Expo while sending his share of performers to the winner's circle. "The weather is great and we had such a good time last year we decided to come back," explained the 61-year-old Chicago native. While Robert got his first taste of the sport in his teens through his parents, it wasn't until six years ago that he really got involved in the game. "My mother passed away and we wanted to have something for my father to look forward to, so we ended up buying a broodmare and eventually purchased some race horses as well." At this time, Corbin owned a trucking company and was just a casual player, but what started out as something to help occupy Robert Sr's time ended up being a real passion for his son, who continued to build the stable following his father's passing two and a half years ago. "I worked with a trainer for about a year and then took out my license in 2017," Corbin explained. By the way, that first broodmare he purchased with his dad was an Artsplace mare named Symphony Bay, and her first foal was Marys Pretty Girl, who has been a regular in the Filly and Mare Open Pace here. When this session ended in April, the Corbin shedrow will return to points East to compete at Hawthorne and Hoosier Park. By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness              

Ponda's Prospect, fresh from a smashing coast-to-coast score at the top rung, and the classy Allmyx'sliventexas get another chance to settle the score in Saturday night's co-featured $7,200 Open Pace at Cal Expo Harness. The outstanding program will also see track record holder Pridecrest and Silverhill Volo squaring off the in the $7,400 Open Trot, while Velocity McSweets set her sights on a third straight victory in the $7,200 Filly and Mare Open Pace. A 7-year-old son of Shadyshank Hanover, Ponda's Prospect Dandy Farms Racing, Kouchis and Leonard with Luke Plano reining and training. Nick Roland has been in the sulky for the last two outings for the Plano trainee, crushing a softer group two weeks ago as the odds-on choice and then coming back last time to put a similar beat on the best pacers on the grounds. Sent off the 3-1 second choice in that affair, Ponda's Prospect took immediate control of the contest, carved out the fractions without challenge and came home in :27 2/5 to seal the deal in a 1:52 2/5 tour that saw him prevailing by four and a half lengths. Allmyx'sliventexas will be gunning for some revenge after suffering his first loss in six appearances at this meeting while being parked the mile from his outside post and paying the price in the lane. The 8-year-old Hi Ho Silverheel's homebred carries the banner of Wayne and Rod Knittel with Bob Johnson the conditioner and Jacob Cutting will handle the lines from the outside post in the field of seven. Allmyx'sliventexas kicked off this meet with five straight trips to the winner's circle, including a clear-cut victory in the December 11 Dave Goldschmidt Pace. In three of those scores, he was leaving from the demanding No. 10 post position. Cordarius Stewart frequent visitor to circle Cordarius Stewart is one of the new names on the program here and has made a nice impression with his drives, including back-to-back victories behind Velocity McSweets at the head of the filly and mare pacing ranks. The 26-year-old explained that he actually drove his first winner at the tender age of 13 at the fair tracks in his native Mississippi. "You could say I was born into the sport through my father," Stewart related. "There was a point where I would go to school and then head to the track to train and drive my horses." Cordarius eventually worked his way to Chicago when he was 19, recording his first recognized win when he guided Chili Beach to victory at Balmoral Park. "I'll never forget that night, because it was 5 degrees." Stewart was actually away from the sport from 2013 until 2017, when he returned to action on the Illinois circuit. He was competing at Hawthorne this winter when racing secretary Robin Schadt suggested he give California a try. "I made the trip out here in my car not knowing what to expect, but it's worked out pretty well so far and I plan to stay through the end of the meet and then go back to Hawthorne, which opens in early May." Stewart has been teaming extremely well with the classy mare Velocity McSweets, who has roared from behind to account for the last two Distaff Opens. "If you look, you'll see I actually win most of my races from the off the pace, so I love driving this mare." by Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness    

Hi Ho Julio, fresh from a dominating harness racing victory with similar company, figures to have plenty of backers in Friday night's main event at Cal Expo Harness. Watch and Wager LLC will present 11 races with first post set for 6:00 p.m. and the headliner is the fourth event on the evening. Hi Ho Julio is a 5-year-old son of Hi Ho Silverheel's who is owned and trained by Bob Johnson and will once again have Nick Roland giving directions. He established his 1:53 2/5 career standard here last season. He started the year with back-to-back wins, then was no factor in his next pair before returning to winning form in last week's assignment. Roland left hard into an eventual pocket spot, regained the lead early in the drive and went on to a four a quarter length decision while returning $13.40 to his backers. Looking ahead to the Saturday program, the best trotters and pacers on the grounds will be in action with an Open Pace, an Open Trot and a Distaff Open Pace in the spotlight. The Open Pace is headed by last week's smashing winner Ponda's Prospect and Allmyx'sliventexas, who had his winning streak snapped at five after having a rough journey. Pridecrest and Silverhill Volo get another chance to settle the score in the Open Trot, while Velocity McSweets eyes her third straight victory at the head of the distaff class in the Filly and Mare Open Pace. A reminder there are three wagers offered each night that come with a reduced 16 percent takeout rate - the 20-cent early and late Pick 5 and the 20-cent Pick 4, with the latter featuring a $25,000-guaranteed gross pool. Marc Mellow, Magic give Clements barn a boost The latter part of last Sunday's program was a good one for owner/trainer Robin Clements, as she watched her full-brother pacers Marc Mellow Man and Marced Magic account for two of the last three events on the evening. Marc Mellow Man overcame the outside post in a field of nine to come from last and post an 8-1 upset with Nick Roland at the controls, while Marced Magic was a prompt 3-5 favorite in the nightcap with Luke Plano in the sulky. "I was especially happy with Marc Mellow Man, because he hadn't been racing well," Clements noted. "I had given him a couple of weeks off before his last start, so I knew he would need a tightener, and he did get a class break last week even though he had the nine hole. "Nick gets along well with Marshmellow, as we call him, and I was lucky he was available. He gave him a great drive and it was a nice boost for the stable." Everybody and his cousin expected Marced Magic to win, thus his 3-5 odds, and he didn't disappoint with a three and three-quarter length romp for Plano while shaving a tick off his lifetime standard with the 1:52 3/5 clocking. "I talked to Luke before the race and mentioned that even though Magic has won on the front end before, he does prefer to come from behind and has a huge kick coming home. He is also very versatile and can take the air. He's my favorite in the barn because there is no cheat in this horse and he will give you 200% ever time." Robin pointed out the one thing full brothers Marc Mellow Man and Merced Magic have in common is that neither horse will pee in the best barn. "We always laugh because the testers know they won't pee and always comment how lucky they were to get the horse for the test!" Clements wanted to give a shout out to groom Irma Delacruz, who puts in long hours giving these horses tender loving care and usually gets stuck for an extra hour and a half in the test barn with this pair; and Tien Desomer, who handles the workout miles. By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness                  

Columbus, MN - The featured event on the Tuesday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces was the Minnesota-Sired freshman pace with three divisions and a total purse of $23,000.   The $8,625 Colts and Geldings division was headlined by heavy favorite Twilight Sunset (Rick Magee, 1-5) who was trying to maintain unbeaten status - in search of his fifth consecutive win in as many career starts. The clear second choice in the seven horse contest was Alilthundadownunda (Nick Roland, 3-1).   Rick Magee fired fastest of all off of the gate from post seven with the favorite, quickly establishing the lead over longshot SD Watch Me Now (Brian Detgen) and Marc In The Box (Duane Roland). Nick Roland took back to fourth from post one with Alilthundadownunda and sat patiently through early fractions of :28 and :58.3.   Marc In The Box pulled first-up down the backside and applied moderate pressure to the leader before dropping back midway through the last turn, while Alilthundadownunda tipped three-wide with plenty of pace as they rounded for home.   Twilight Sunset dug in gamely but was unable to fend off Alilthundadownunda ($8.60) who got a neck in front on the line in 1:56.3 for his first career win.       The winner is a gelded son of Malak Uswaad N, owned by Set The Pace Racing LLC and trained by Jessica Johnson.   The $8,625 "A" spilt of the freshman filly pacers went to She's A Showstopper (Jacob Cutting, $13.40) in 1:58.2 for her third career win. The It's That Time filly is owned by Van Otterloo Stables and trained by Gordon Graham.   Of Great Worth (Dean Magee) was home second, just ahead of race favorite May Day Maggie (Mooney Svendsen).   The $5,750 "B" split went to Muffin Top (Braxten Boyd, $3.60) who rallied from off the pace and drew away late to post her first career win by 2-1/4 lengths in 1:59.1. The daughter of Vlos is owned and trained by her breeder Wendy Haberberg.   Tootsie'sonaterror (Brian Detgen) was second and JK Saving Grace (Tim Maier) was third.   Driver Jacob Cutting led the program with two wins, registering his third consecutive driving double.   The 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot Carryover is now at $13,809.00   Live Racing continues at Running Aces through October 4, with action four days a week at 1:00 pm CDT.   By Darin Gagne for Running Aces   

Columbus, MN - The featured event on the Wednesday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces was the $9,000 Open Handicap Trot, headlined by heavy 2-5 favorite Mandeville (Nick Roland) who was looking to extend a two race winning streak and was returning to action off of 22 days rest.   After two scratches reduced the field to five, Mandeville got to move in two spots on the gate and was fastest off the car from the outside spot. Justlikehim (Jacob Cutting) also left alertly from post four and got away second, but after sensing the slow early tempo (:29 and :58.3) went on the attack before the half mile.   Justlikehim was parked and pressuring the leader all the way to deep stretch, but Mandeville ($2.80) was able to fend him off and post a gate-to-wire victory by one length in 1:55.3 with Magic Mvp (Chris Scicluna) getting up right at the wire to snag second away from Justlikehim.       Mandeville now has seven wins in twelve outings this year. He eclipsed the quarter-million dollar mark in career earnings ($254,169) with today's victory. Gerald Longo is the winning owner and trainer.   Trainer Alexia Kehl swept both divisions of the two year old Open Trot, scoring in the first $4,500 division with filly Sunny P (Dean Magee, $8.40) in 2:08.2 for her first lifetime win for owners Neil Goldstein and Mercedes Cabrera.   In the second $4,500 division, Kehl was victorious with her own gelding Oh Danny Boy (Darrell Wright, $9.80) who also picked up his first lifetime win with a one length tally in 2:03.2.   Driver Nick Roland led the Wednesday program with three winners and Dean Magee registered a driving double.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday (September 19) with first post at 1:00 pm CDT and will feature a carryover in the 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot wager of $10,993.47.   By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces

Columbus, MN - The featured event on the Wednesday afternoon (September 9) harness racing program at Running Aces was the $11,500 Minnesota-Sired freshman colt & geldings trot with a field of seven square-gaited rivals lining up behind the gate.   The overwhelming 1-9 favorite in the race was a Rush To The Bank (Nick Roland) who was coming into the event with two wins in a row, and five wins in ten career outings.   Driver Nick Roland sent the favorite straight to the front and dominated the affair with moderate fractions of :30.1, 1:02 and 1:32.2 over the rain-soaked oval, which was rated as good.   There was never an anxious moment for Rush To The Bank ($2.10) as he kept his rivals well behind throughout the mile, and kicked home in :30.2 to check in 7-3/4 lengths ahead in 2:02.4.       Half-brother Hide Your Banker (Brandon Jenson) got up for second over Oh Danny Boy (Darrell Wright) to complete the Banker Volo-sired Exacta that returned a handsome $71.40.   The winner is a gelding out of the Valley Victor mare Vacation Valley, owned by Jeralene Roland and Vikki Rush and trained by Dan Roland.   Trotstyle Takeover (Mooney Svendsen, $13.60) scored her first career win in the $11,500 freshman filly trot in 2:07 - closing late to just get up over the Banker Volo filly It's So Fluffy (Dean Magee) by a nose. Sunny P (Darrell Wright) was home third.   The winning filly is by Braggart and is owned by trainer Brett Ballinger, along with Darren and Suzanne Taylor and Benvenga Racing.   PH Kenny (Darrell Wright, $7.20) extended his winning streak to five in a row in a $12,000 claiming pace with another sharp mile in 1:55.4 over the surface that had been down-graded to sloppy. Gerald Longo is the winning owner and trainer, having claimed the horse last time out. Previous connections Jose Cervantes and Edward Hernandez claimed the 8 year old Lis Mara gelding back today.   Driver Mooney Svendsen led the program with his second consecutive Hat-Trick day, and owner Benvenga Racing had two winners on the program.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday, September 12 with first post at 1:00 pm (CDT) and will feature two carryover pools - $7,374.18 for the Pick-5 Jackpot, and $1,458.55 for the Early Pick-4.   By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces 

Columbus, MN - The Saturday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces offered a pair of featured events.   The $11,500 Minnesota-Sired sophomore filly pace drew a field of six and was headlined by heavy favorite It's Pacific Time who was sent off as the 1-9 favorite from post six.   Driver Rick Magee sent It's Pacific Time ($2.10) quickly off the gate and surged to an immediate lead, putting two lengths on pocket-sitter Huftalookatdatfany (Nick Roland) as they registered the first quarter in a quick :27.3.   Magee orchestrated a middle-half breather of :59.2 before pacing home in :28.2 to widen the margin to 3-3/4 lengths at the wire over Huftalookatdatfany and Scarlett Ruby (Dean Magee) in 1:55.2.       The winning filly is by It's That Time and is trained by Joel Mc Danel for owner John Hendricks. She has now won eight of eleven starts this year.   Heza Real Diamond (Nick Roland) dominated the Open Handicap Pace for horses and geldings for the second straight week, and for three wins in a row - posting a sharp 3-1/4 length score in 1:52.3 for his tenth win in eighteen starts this year.   After working hard to get to the front from post seven in a :27 second first stanza, Heza Real Diamond ($4.20) was never in doubt once on the lead, and also benefitted from a textbook middle-half breather of :58.4 worked out by Roland.   Stuckey Dote (Darrell Wright) rallied for second and Prologue (Tim Maier) was home third.       The winner is owned by Orlando Nevarez and trained by Edwin Quevedo.   Drivers Rick Magee and Jacob Cutting dominated the Saturday program with three wins each.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Sunday (September 6) with first post at 1: 00 pm CDT and will feature a carryover in the 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot wager of $4,988.21.   by Darin Gagne, for Running Aces  

Columbus, MN - The Saturday afternoon (August 29) harness racing program at Running Aces featured the $9,500 Open Handicap Pace for horses and geldings, and the betting public quickly zeroed in on last week's winner Heza Real Diamond as the overwhelming 1-5 favorite.   Driver Nick Roland floated away from the gate in fourth with Heza Real Diamond while Elusive Image (Rick Magee) was quickest off the car and Stuckey Dote (Darrell Wright) surged toward the front early. As they approached the 3/8 marker Roland got moving with the favorite and began a first-over attack that would persist for more than half a mile - gradually wearing down the front runner as they turned for home.   As they straightened for the wire, Heza Real Diamond ($2.60) drew away from his rivals with authority and the battle was on for second - with Hoo Nien A (Chris Scicluna) rallying from well off the pace to just beat Elusive Image at the line for second, 2-1/2 lengths behind the winner in the 1:52.2 mile.       Heza Real Diamond now shows 9 wins in 17 starts this year, and has banked $41,698 on the season. The impressive four year old gelded son of Allamerican Native is owned by Orlando Nevarez and trained by Edwin Quevedo.   Driver Braxten Boyd led the Saturday program with a double on the card, and trainers Tim Maier and Edwin Quevedo each registered doubles on the day.   Live Racing continues at Running Aces every Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday, and beginning on September 9, Wednesday racing will also be offered. All post times are at 1:00 pm (CDT). The 2020 meet will conclude on Sunday, October 4.   By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces

Columbus, MN - The featured event on the Tuesday (August 11) harness racing program at Running Aces was the $9,500 Open Handicap Trot - with a field of eight talented square-gaiters going into battle.   The talk of the tote-board was Bordogna, who was looking to extend an eight-race winning streak and was sent off at 4-5 from the outside post.   Mandeville (Nick Roland) fired fast from the gate from post seven, and Bordogna (Rick Magee) fired even faster from post eight - surging to the lead well before the quarter and seating Mandeville into the pocket with a sharp opening stanza of :27.1, while Banker Volo (Tim Maier) also showed early speed to sit third.   Bordogna trotted strong on the lead and was not pressured through the middle stages, posting :56.1 and 1:24.3 for a middle half in :57.2. Mandeville enjoyed the garden seat throughout while Pridecrest (Mooney Svendsen) came first-over. As they straightened for home Mandeville shook free from the pocket with plenty of trot and was able to surge past Bordogna for a 1-1/4 length tally in a career best winning time of 1:54, which was just one-fifth of a second off of the overall track trotting record. Pridecrest, (the record holder) edged out Banker Volo for the third spot.   Mandeville ($6.40) is an 8 year old gelding by Majestic Son and has now won 27 career races, while bankrolling $244,919. The winning owner/trainer is Gerald Longo.   The Tuesday program also featured the Minnesota-Sired two year old events for both trotters and pacers.   The $9,200 "B" division of the freshman pacers went to Doubleontherocks (Nick Roland, $4.40) who scored a 1-1/4 length victory on career debut with a mile in 1:58.1 over She's A Showstopper (Jacob Cutting) and Twisted Bliss (Brandon Jenson). The winner is a filly by Lettherockbegin, owned by Nikki Hudson and trained by Jessica Johnson.   The $15,000 freshman trot went to The Royal Queen (Rick Magee, $5.60) for her fourth straight win, with a new career mark in 2:01.2 over Rush To The Bank (Nick Roland) and It's So Fluffy (Dean Magee). The winner is a filly by Tom Ridge, owned and trained by Justin Anfinson.   The $13,800 freshman "A" pace went to Twilight Sunset (Rick Magee, $3.40) for his second straight win in two career starts. The colt by Twilight Bonfire edged by Mayday Maggie (Mooney Svendsen) late for a 1:56 win, with Mibwest Kid (Dean Magee) home in third. The winner is owned by Janna Lee Rucker and trained by Brady Jenson.   Driver Nick Roland led the program with a Grand Slam of four winners, while Rick Magee, Darrell Wright and Dean Magee each scored driving doubles. Trainers Jessica Johnson and Edward Hernandez each registered a double on the day.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday, August 15 with first post at 1:00 pm (CDT).   by Darin Gagne, for Running Aces

Columbus, MN - The Sunday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces featured three divisions of three year old trotters, with a total purse of $23,000.   The $11,500 "A" division had a field of eight lining up behind the gate and the talk of the tote-board was Teachmehowtotory at 1-2 in the wagering from post four with driver Nick Roland in the bike, and fresh off a last out win at the same level.   Trotterlicious (Rick Bertrand) fired fastest off the gate from post two and SB Madame Secretary also left sharply from the outside eight post to set up a front-end battle that lasted from just past the 3/8 marker to the far turn, where SB Madame Secretary finally cleared the lead. They set torrid fractions up front (:28.3, :56.3 and 1:26.3) while Teachmehowtotory benefitted from the intense battle from the garden seat in third, then angled out of the pocket at just the right moment to get rolling as they rounded for home.   Teachmehowtotory ($3.00) was full steam ahead as they straightened away and easily drew away from the competition to score a 3-1/4 length tally in a sharp mile of 1:57 for a new career mark, while Passion In Paris (Jacob Cutting) closed late to pick up the pieces for second just ahead of SD Eliminator (Brian Detgen) in a tight place photo.   Teachmehowtotory now has three wins on the season and six career tallies for owners Set The Pace Racing LLC and trainer Jessica Johnson. The sharp Braggart filly has now bankrolled $57,497 to date. The 1:57 clocking was just one-fifth of a second off of the track record for three year old trotting fillies.   The $6,900 "B" division went to Hearduwhispermynam (Brian Detgen, $3.00) also delivering as the 1-2 favorite as part of the Jenni King owned entry. Hearduwhispermynam took control just past the quarter and was never in doubt with a solid 1-3/4 length tally in 1:57.4 for a new lifetime mark.   The $4,600 "C" division went to Al Mar Why Not (Rick Magee, $3.20) who was also the public choice and scored a convincing gate-to-wire victory by three lengths in 2:00.1 for a new career mark, and first pari-mutuel win. Bryce Jenson is the winning owner and the winning trainer is Brandon Jenson.   Driver Braxten Boyd led the Sunday program with three winners on the day, including a sharp 1:52.2 score with Bestinthebusiness ($3.60) in a nice $6,700 conditioned pace for owner Brett Boyd Racing and trainer Gene Miller.   Driver Nick Roland added two wins on Sunday, while trainer Jessica Johnson also picked up two wins.   A track record $2 exacta payout was registered on Sunday when Queen of Marcs (Darrel Wright, 23-1) combined with Pathologist (Michael Magee, 50-1) in the fifth race of the day to return a whopping $1,892.60 for the biggest exacta return ever at Running Aces.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Tuesday, July 28 with first post at 1:00 pm (CDT) and will feature a Carryover in the 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot wager of $15,760.48.   By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces

Columbus, MN - Harness racing driver Nick Roland was on fire at Running Aces on Tuesday (July 14) adding 6 winners to his already impressive win total (now 34) from 116 drives across the first twelve programs of the 2020 meet.   The numbers that Roland currently shows are nothing short of incredible. He is winning races at just shy of a thirty percent pace (29.31%), hitting the trifecta at over sixty-eight percent, carrying a UDRS of .475 and is on pace to re-write the track record for most wins in a single season by a single driver - (his own record) of 112 from 2016. He is also on pace to eclipse his career best mark of 140 wins in a single year (2012).   Horses from his own stable, trained by longtime girlfriend Jessica Johnson, are also posting incredible numbers - Johnson is the current leading trainer with a leading margin of 5 wins (16), winning at nearly thirty-one percent (30.77%), and Johnson currently carries a UTRS of .520 and a top-three percentage of over sixty-nine (69.32%).   Roland won the first two races of the day, each of them $11,500 events for two year old Minnesota-sired horses, kicking off his stellar day with a 2:06.2 score in the first aboard trotter Rush To The Bank ($5.20) for trainer Dan Roland. In the second he piloted Rockin Louie ($3.60) to a sharp win in 2:00.3 for trainer Duane Roland.   After going 4th, 2nd, 3rd and second in the next four events, Roland reeled off four winners in a row starting with Hottieonthehorizon ($3.80) in 1:56 for trainer Jessica Johnson, then Pull The Shade ($8.20) in 1:53.4 in the Mares Open Pace for trainer Tim Maier. Next up was another sharp win - and 4 in a row for Twilight Tinker ($5.20) in 1:58.4 also trained by Jessica Johnson. Roland then steered Brian's Magic Girl ($4.20) from last-to-first in 1:57.1 for trainer John Rogers.   Roland was third the final two races of the day, to complete a summary of 12 starts, 6 wins, 2 seconds and 3 thirds, while only missing the top three once - a fourth place finish aboard two year old trotter Rockin The Rails (18-1) who made a break due to broken equipment in his race.   As the track's all time leading driver, Roland recently drove his 800th Running Aces winner on June 30 and has a 150 win lead over Rick Magee on the track's all time list. Those two are also the current leaders for 2020.   Bordogna (Rick Magee) remained undefeated in six outings in 2020 after capturing the $10,000 Open Handicap Trot with a gutsy effort to hold off a strong late rally by Mandeville (Nick Roland) - just a neck separated those two at the wire in 1:56.1. Bordogna ($5.60) is trained by Justin Anfinson for owners Cathy Dessert and Ken Stauffer. The 4 year old Trixton stallion has now won seven races in a row going back to last fall, and has bankrolled $73,075 with nineteen wins from 35 starts.   Pull The Shade (Nick Roland, $8.20) captured the $9,000 Mares Open Pace by converting the perfect pocket trip into a 1-3/4 length tally in 1:53.4 for her first win of the season. The winning owner is Ferrell York and the winning trainer is Tim Maier.   Rick Magee also had a big day on Tuesday, piloting 3 winners on the card for a driving Hat-Trick. Trainers Justin Anfinson and Jessica Johnson led with two winners each.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday, July 18 with first post at 1:00 pm (CDT) and features a pair of Carryovers - $9,796.21 in the 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot, and $1,032.05 in the 50 cent Hi-5 wager.   By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces   

The Saturday afternoon harness racing program at Running Aces featured a grand slam performance from all time track leader Nick Roland, who picked up four wins, two seconds and three thirds from eleven trips to the gate, and is quickly approaching his 800th victory at the Minnesota track, no other driver has won more than 600 races here.   The card was also highlighted by two divisions of the sophomore Minnesota-Sired pacers - with seven contenders facing the gate for the 'A' division and vying for a purse of $13,800 and eight contenders lining up for the 'B' grouping with $9,200 at stake.   Bunkerhill Phil (Don Harmon) left alertly from post seven to take the early lead in the 'A' split, with race favorite It's A Marcs World (Nick Roland) yielding for the pocket from post six. Bunkerhill Phil posted very moderate fractions of :28.2, :58.4 and 1:29 and led to the cusp of the stretch before Roland exploded from the pocket with It's A Marcs World and drew away by three lengths in 1:57.1 for his first pari-mutuel win and career best mile, with a sharp final stanza of :27.4.   The gelded son of Marced Card is out of the Life Sign mare Life's Image and is owned by Duane Roland and trained by Jessica Johnson. The smart money poured in on the winner, as he was bet down to even money odds ($4.00) from a lofty morning line of 10-1, while second choice Bunkerhill Phil held second and was well clear of Get My Good Side (Steve Wiseman) who showed in third.   Nothinbutagoodtime (Dean Magee, $21.20) pulled the upset in the 'B' division with an impressive rally from last-to-first to capture his first lifetime win in 1:58. Thegreatestislove (Nick Roland) led most of the way and held a game second, while race-favorite Catchmeinadream (Rick Magee) checked in third. Nothinbutagoodtime is a son of It's That Time and is out of the Cam's Cardshark mare Sweet Repeat. The winning owner is Van Otterloo Stables and the winning trainer is Gordon Graham.   Drivers Rick Magee and Lemoyne "Moonie" Svendsen each completed a double on the card, and trainers Edwin Quevedo and Jessica Johnson also picked up doubles on the afternoon.   Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Sunday, June 28 with first post at 1:00 pm (CDT) and features a pair of carryover pools: $1,986.77 for the 20 cent Pick-5 Jackpot, and $1,010.65 for the 50 cent Hi-5.   Darin Gagne                                                  

Forest Lake, MN - Voting took place at the MHRI Annual meeting and Banquet on Saturday, 22 at Vanelli's by the Lake in Forest Lake, MN and MD Magic was chosen as the 2019 Horse of the Year in the sport of harness racing in Minnesota.   MD Magic also took home the hardware as the Champion sophomore male trotter for 2019. The talented gelded son of Braggart is out of the Striking Sahbra mare Magical Debut, and is owned by Set The Pace Racing LLC and trained and driven by Nick Roland.   After picking up honors as the two year old colt trotter of the year in 2018 with 9 wins in eleven starts and setting a seasonal earnings record in the Minnesota program, MD Magic returned to the races in early May of 2019 with an easy qualifying win in 2:05.1 followed by a 2:01.4 victory in a 3 year old open to get his sophomore season rolling in style.   MD Magic made a habit of turning in dramatic performances throughout his 2019 campaign - winning going away (in 2:00.1) from post 10 in the second tier in a $16,000 3 year old MN event on June 23 was one example, but even more dramatic were 3 occasions (July 28, August 18 and September 8) where MD Magic appeared to be hopelessly blocked with no racing room, yet perfect timing and patient handling from trainer/driver Nick Roland got the dynamic duo to the Winner's Circle time and time again.   MD Magic was unbeatable in July and August in 4 starts, and closed out his Running Aces season strong in September as well with a win and two close seconds from three outings. His final tally for 2019 was 16 starts, 7 wins, 4 seconds and 1 third with a mark of 1:59.2 and earnings of $74,950 - yet another seasonal earnings record for the Minnesota program.   Shortly after the banquet festivities, I caught up with Jessica Johnson, one of the principals of Set The Pace Racing (along with Ken Stauffer) and here's what I learned about her star trotter:   "Magic is probably the star of the barn/stable amongst all of the caretakers/owners and guests, and it's not just because he is talented and successful, it's his personality - he loves people and he loves treats, if you are within his reach he will reach out to you and pull you over to him to give him attention and beg you for carrots or treats" Johnson also stated that he loves his outdoor time in the paddock where he runs and jumps and plays. An additional testament to his docile temperament is the fact that when it comes time to give barn guests/race fans a ride on the track in the two-seater jog cart, it's often Magic that is chosen to do so.   One surprising tidbit that Jessica shared is that they (herself, trainer Nick Roland and staff) were not particularly keen on MD Magic's abilities early on, he just seemed average at best during his early work as a freshman, but she said "that all changed after his first qualifying race where he really showed a hint of his abilities" and he indeed continued to show that throughout his two year old season, racking up nine wins in eleven starts. Johnson also added that MD Magic " doesn't require alot of intense training to stay in top racing form, he mostly puts in lots of slow methodical miles to stay in shape, and he benefits from weekly visits from the chiropractor. "   In addition, Johnson expressed that they are beyond thrilled at the Horse of the Year award and stated "we were not expecting this, but are so honored that our fellow horsemen find him to be as special as we do. "   When I asked what we might expect to see from MD Magic as a 4 year old in 2020 Johnson responded by saying " he owes us nothing, but I do know he loves his job, we are just excited to be a part of the horse he continues to grow to be. "   MD Magic, with his $145,250 in the bank is now the most successful offspring of the sire Braggart ($350,949) who took a 3 year old mark of 1:55f in 2009. Glen Sauder of Withee, Wisconsin is the breeder of record for MD Magic, and is the current owner of his sire Braggart.   By Darin Gagne, for Minnesota Harness Racing

On the strength of his second consecutive harness racing record-setting year MD Magic grabs the headline heading into this Saturday's (Feb 22) Annual MHRI meeting and Awards Banquet.   MD Magic will pick up the hardware as the 3 year old colt Trotter of the Year for 2019 with seven wins in sixteen starts and a new record of $74,950 earned in a single season in the Minnesota program. He was the first horse to break the $70,000 barrier when he recorded earnings of $70,300 as the freshman champion in 2018. The talented son of Braggart is owned by Set The Pace Racing and trained and driven by Nick Roland. Major Al Mar (G,M & J Wilson/Alexia Kehl) is the runner-up award winner in the category.   Three year old colt Pacer of the year will go to SB Bodacious (Mikaela Del Giudice/Rick Magee) with runner up Burning Blaze (A,C Sandbulte & E Gutin/Justin Anfinson). On the females side of the sophomore awards it will be pacing filly Windmeupnwatchmego (Richard Davelaar/Gordon Graham) for the top award, with Sweet Vivian (Timothy Lems/Robert Lems) as runner-up. Al Mar Humdinger (Aimes Racing/Elvin Zimmerman) and Lone Pine Shuzy (Wendy Haberburg) will share the award as 3 year old trotting filly of the year.   The two year old filly Trotter of the year goes to Double My Dekker (J,B & E De Long/Justin Anfinson) with Susie's Sister (Lynchris, LLC/Don Harmon) as runner-up. Freshman colt trotter of the year is Hearduwhispermynam (Jenni King) and the runner up award goes to Trotterlicious (Rick Bertrand).   Freshman pacing awards will go to fillies Catchmeinadream (Alan & Cheryl Sandbulte/Justin Anfinson) and Huftalookatdatfany (Van Oterloo Stables/Gordon Graham) as runner-up. The winning freshman colts are Bunkerhill Phil (Gene Miller) and Alright Frankie (J J, A P, K M De Long & T J Carrey/Justin Anfinson) is the runner-up.   The 4 year old & up award winners include All Mar Bon Bon (Cara Hauser/Alexia Kehl) as champion trotting mare with Al Mar Reba Babe (Richard Davis) as runner-up, while Bringoverthemoney (Joshua Horvat/David Ginter) scores the win as top aged male trotter over runner-up French Eclipse (Jenni King). Place N First (Jenni King) is the winner for aged pacing mares with Peekaboo Tattoo (Fabiola Quevedo/Edwin Quevedo) as runner-up, and the final divisional category goes to DeweydiddoneGood (Fredi Herrera/Edwin Quevedo) as top aged male pacer with Buzz Light (Cathy & Bill Dessert/Nick Roland) as the runner-up.   Awards will also be presented for the top performers at the Minnesota Fairs in 2019, with Double My Dekker (J, B, E De Long/Justin Anfinson) as the fairs Trotter of the Year and The Boss' Wife (Cathy Dessert, Set The Pace Racing/Nick Roland) picking up the hardware as the 2019 fairs Pacer of the Year. Brian Detgen will take the fairs Driver of the Year award for the second year in a row and Justin Anfinson is the 2019 fairs Trainer of the Year.   The 2019 Minnesota Harness Racing awards will be presented this Saturday (Feb 22) at the MHRI Annual meeting and Banquet, at Vanelli's by the Lake in Forest Lake, Minn. Check in time starts at 1 pm for the Annual meetings, with Cocktail hour begining at 4 pm followed by Dinner and Awards. There will be a traditional Banquet Raffle as well as a Live Stallion Auction. Banquet attendees will get the chance to nominate and vote for 2019 Minnesota Harness Racing Horse of the Year.   by Darin Gagne, for the Minnesota Harness Racing Industry    

1 to 16 of 113
1 2 3 4 5 Next »