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November 24, 2015 - The final opportunity for major movement in the standings occurred last week in the 2015 HANA Harness Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge presented by the Bellino Stables, DRF Harness, Green Acquisition Corporation, Hambletonian Society, Isle of Capri Pompano Park, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Northfield Park, Tioga Downs, and Vernon Downs. The team was tasked with four races from The New Meadowlands on Friday and six on Saturday. Friday evening saw three favorites and a single winner at 4-1 in Double Exposure. That meant another low scoring night and little movement. Anne Stepien and Gordon Waterstone each tabbed three of four races for 93 points each. Neither had a tie breaker in the money so Friday night was declared a dead heat. Four handicappers were able to come up with Double Exposure. They were Earl Paulson, JoniJosi Verlingieri, Derick Giwner and Mark Dezii. Derick Giwner had the best tiebreaker and finished the night with 64 points while Mark Dezii had 62. There were some longshots that got close. Bobby Zanakis had both Haughty and Blue Moon Stride who both finished second at big prices. It could have been an exciting night had the chalk not been so strong again. Saturday night was the last time the handicappers had an opportunity to land a big multiplier as there were six races on tap. Four races again featured low price winners. A dead took away a nice opportunity when the favorite chopped at 7-1 price down to 2-1. Two players were able to string together five winners. Mark Dezii has been red hot lately and simply crushed the field when he landed Bettor's Edge at $40. With four of the other five other winners he totaled an impressive 496 points for the night! Contest leader Sally Hinckley landed the first five winners for a total of 213 points. For the week Mark Dezii earned top honors with 524 total points. Sally Hinckley put a virtual lock on the win by scoring 262 points. Most of the team went in search of prices and were disappointed. Completing our weekly pentafecta were Earl Paulson (134), Anne Stepien (130) and Gordon Waterstone (123). Sally Hinckley padded her lead by more than 200 points extending it to an unprecedented 567. The real competition next week will be for some of the smaller prizes for our very deserving horse rescues. Dennis O'Hara leads in the race for "Best of the Rest" by 137 points over Anne Stepien, 242 over Gordon Waterstone and 252 over Mark McKelvie. Pos Handicapper Total Points Prior Week Points Earned This Week Overall Total Points Position Last Week Points Back   1st Sally Hinckley 4,785.80 262.80 5,048.60 1st             -     2nd Dennis O'Hara  4,431.80 49.20 4,481.00 2nd       567.60   3rd Anne Stepien 4,212.70 130.60 4,343.30 4th       705.30   4th Gordon Waterstone 4,115.70 123.00 4,238.70 6th       809.90   5th Mark McKelvie 4,179.80 49.00 4,228.80 5th       819.80   6th Josi Verlingieri 4,045.50 62.00 4,107.50 3rd       941.10   7th Rusty Nash 3,865.70 8.80 3,874.50 7th    1,174.10   8th Derick Giwner 3,672.20 97.80 3,770.00 9th    1,278.60   9th Bob Zanakis 3,673.10 80.00 3,753.10 8th    1,295.50   10th Earl Paulson 3,524.00 134.20 3,658.20 11th    1,390.40   11th Bryan Owen 3,542.00 11.20 3,553.20 10th    1,495.40   12th Mark Dezii 2,884.70 524.20 3,408.90 14th    1,639.70   13th Jay Hochstetler  3,300.20 90.20 3,390.40 12th    1,658.20   14th Ray Garnett 3,178.30 36.60 3,214.90 13th    1,833.70   15th Garnet Barnsdale 2,690.50 0.00 2,690.50 15th    2,358.10   16th Michael Carter  2,676.90 0.00 2,676.90 16th    2,371.70   17th Ray Cotolo 2,128.70 0.00 2,128.70 17th    2,919.90   18th Brandon Valvo 1,886.20 49.80 1,936.00 19th    3,112.60   19th Mark Deutsch 1,197.10 0.00 1,197.10 18th    3,851.50   The HANA handicappers will be back in action for the final time this year with The Courageous Lady and The Progress Pace.  We will formally crown our champion and runners up and the winning horse rescues.  For everyone here at HANA Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge we wish you all a great Thanksgiving holiday. by Rusty Nash for HANA Harness

DOVER, Del. ---- The top 2015 Delaware-sired two-year-old filly trotter will be decided in the $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) championship while $2-million winning Wiggle It Jiggleit seeks his 21st triumph of the season in the Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination on a big Monday program, Nov. 23 at Dover Downs. Epic Smash looks for a duplication of last month's $100,000 Harrington final in the Dover Downs' $100,000 DSBF Final. A winner of four straight, Epic Smash leaves from post 1 for driver Pat Berry, trainer Traci Berry and owners Craparolla and Berry Racing. Her major rival is Jane Dunavant's Ciccada's Song, winner of the Virginia Stakes, driven by trainer Carlo Poliseno. She has won six of her seven races. Her only loss came when she broke stride early in the Harrington final, when odds-on favorite. Donald Marine's Miss Baltimore with driver Tony Morgan. And Iron Mine Branch's Chestnut Chic, piloted by Jim Morand have upset credentials. World champion sophomore gelding George Teague Inc.'s Wiggle It Jiggleit, reined by Montrell Teague, is one of three Delaware-owned starters in a one-race $35,000 elimination for next Monday's $300,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace. The other First Staters are fast finishing Dude's The Man (Corey Callahan) racing for M&L Of Delaware, the nom de course of Ralph, Roz and Doug Paul, and their partner Victoria Dickinson. The third is Delaware-sired Remember Me VK , driven by Vic Kirby, for Robin West, Ron Benton and Sharon Wyatt, who recently scored an impressive 1:50.2 win. Early this month, Wiggle It Jiggleit romped to victory in the $201,900 Matron Stake at Dover Downs. Among his fast challengers are Jeff Snyder's Dealt A Winner (David Miller), second in the Matron Final. Duane and Connie Roland start Roland N Rock (Jim Morand), an eight-time winner this year. Arque Hanover (Tim Tetrick) has the rail for Howard Taylor, Abe Basen, Tom Lazzaro and Robert Cooper Stables. The sharp Badix Hanover (John Campbell) owned by Richard and Dale Julich, Rodeo Romeo (Andy Miller), racing for Bob Mondillo, Mike Day and Oompa's Farm, and Rock&Roll Stable's Americanprimetime (Tony Morgan) complete the lineup. Monday through Thursday racing begins at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday are dark days. A $5,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 Pool is now featured daily. The Monday Line-Ups at Dover Downs 8th Race -2YO Filly DSBF $100,000 Trot 1. Epic Smash Pat Berry 5-2 2. Princess Politics Wayne Long 25-1 3. Triple Bottom Line Jeff Fout 4-1 4. Miss Baltimore Tony Morgan 9-2 5. Press Corp Art Stafford Jr 20-1 6. Chestnut Chic Jim Morand 30-1 7. Unique Rosa Lene Corey Callahan 30-1 8. Cicada's Song Carlo Poliseno 7-5 -------------------------------------- 10th Race Hap Hansen Progress $35,000 Pace 1. Arque Hanover Tim Tetrick) 6-1 2. Remember Me VK Eric Goodell 8-1 3. Dealt A Winner David Miller 7-2 4. Dude's The Man Corey Callahan 5-1 5. Wiggle It Jiggleit Montrell Teague 8-5 6. Rodeo Romeo Andy Miller 15-1 7. Roland N Rock Jim Morand 25-1 8. Americanprimetime Tony Morgan 20-1 9. Badix Hanover John Campbell 8-1 Marv Bachrad

DOVER, Del. ----Epic Smash, drew the rail, Cicada's Song, outside post 8 in the $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF)Two-Year-Old Filly Trot Final and Wiggle It Jiggleit heads a nine-horse field in the Hap Hansen Progress Pace elimination on Monday, Nov. 23 at Dover Downs. In the $100,000 DSBF Final, Epic Smash, winner of last month's $100,000 Harrington final brings a four-race win streak and leaves from the rail for driver Pat Berry, trainer Traci Berry and owners Craparolla and Berry Racing. Jane Dunavant's Ciccada's Song also boast impressive past performances. She won last week wire-to-wire and seeks to revenge her performance in the Harrington final when she broke stride and finished out-of-the-money, as odds-on favorite. Trainer Carlo Poliseno drives the six-race winner of seven career starts. Miss Baltimore cannot be overlooked. Owned by Donald Marine with Tony Morgan. Iron Mine Branch's Chestnut Chic is the other prelim winner. Jim Morand will drive for trainer Greg Haverstick. Three of the starters show three straight second place finishes: Winbak Farms' Triple Bottom Line with Jeff Fout driving, Stacy Stafford's Press Corp with Art Stafford Jr. in the bike, and Princess Politics racing for trainer-driver Wayne Long and Wyatt Long. Corey Callahan will drive Ron Silletto and Joe Benedetti's Unique Rosa Lene, who has consecutive third-place finishes. Unshakeable Peace (Eddie Dennis), owned by Kathleen Hayes, Wayne Whitson and E&K Stables, and Jane Dunavant's Devlin (Poliseno) lead the $20,000 DSBF Consolation. Nine fast three-year-olds vie in the $35,000 elimination for the eight starting positions in next Monday's $300,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace. Heading the impressive list is $2-million winner, world champion George Teague Inc.'s Wiggle It Jiggleit (Montrell Teague), who won the recent $201,900 Matron Stake at Dover Downs. Among challengers are Delaware-sired Remember Me VK (Vic Kirby), a recent 1:50.2 winner for Robin West, Ron Benton and Sharon Wyatt. Another First State-owned contender is the fast Dude's The Man (Corey Callahan) racing for M&L Of Delaware and Victoria Dickinson. Jeff Snyder's Dealt A Winner (David Miller) finished second in the Matron Final. Duane and Connie Roland start Roland N Rock (John Campbell), an eight-time winner this season. Arque Hanover (Brett Miller) has the rail for Howard Taylor, Abe Basen, Tom Lazzaro and Robert Cooper Stables. The sharp Badix Hanover (Andy Miller) owned by Richard and Dale Julich, Rodeo Romeo (Scott Zeron), racing for Bob Mondillo, Mike Day and Oompa's Farm, and Rock&Roll Stable's Americanprimetime (Tony Morfgan) complete the lineup. Canadian speedster and local standout head a field of nine in the $21,000 Filly and Mare Winners-Over pace, the Tuesday feature race. Monday through Thursday racing begins at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday are dark days. A $5,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 Pool is now featured daily. Marv Bachrad  

DOVER, Del. --- It has been 20 years since the rejuvenation of Major League harness racing at Dover Downs. Its signature even, The Progress Pace now has a new name. It is the Hap Hansen Pace, named for the late Dover Downs and Brandywine Raceway executive who passed away last year. This year's event will be the 20th renewal of the largest-purse race in Delaware harness racing. The $400,000 (est) Hap Hansen is the highlight of the first full month of the track's 47th season and highlight event of its 2015 "Novemberfest of Racing." The Hap Hansen features the sport's leading three-year-olds in the sport expected to be led by the top two sophomore pacers Wiggle It Jiggleit and Wakizashi Hanover. The top eight money-winning sophomores meet in in the $300,000 estimated final on Monday, Nov. 30. Progress Pace history The Progress Pace was created by Dover Downs' CEO Denis McGlynn in the fashion of a former state of Delaware sports' tradition - The Battle of the Brandywine - formerly the showcase of ill-fated Brandywine Raceway. Last year,Canadian champion McWicked, driven by David Miller, notched the fastest win of the event's history, scoring in 1:48.4. Over the years, Most of the sports leading drivers, owners and stables have participated in the Progress Pace. Hall of Fame drivers include four-time winner John Campbell and three-times winners Ron Pierce and Luc Ouellette. Bret Pelling has trained three Progress Pace champions. Sampson Street Stable has shared in three Progress Pace champions with Newman Racing, two, the only other with more than one winner. The first Progress Pace was carded in 1996 with a $100,000 final. The winner was Armbro Operative, owned by Tom Walsh, Jr. and Dave McDuffy, driven by Mike Lachance. It was the first of three Progress Pace winners conditioned by Brett Pelling. Marv Bachrad

DOVER, Del. ---- Only six of the eight who started in last week's Progress Pace Prevue answered the call for Sunday's $301,650 Progress Pace Final. Also on the top Dec. 7 card is the $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) Male Pace Final. Post time is 5:30 for the 15-race program In the big one, McWicked, thanks to payment of a $25,000 supplement by Ed James' SSG Stable, scored an impressive 1:48.4 wire-to-wire victory with fellow millionaire JK Endofanera second and Matron upset winner Big Boy Dreams third in the Prevue. All three return going for $201,650 meeting fast rivals All Bets Off, Somewhere In LA and National Debt. Hall of Famer David Miller drove Breeders Crown winner McWicked, conditioned by Casie Coleman, one of Canada's leading trainer, to victory in a 1:48.4 victory in a wire-to-wire victory in the Progress Pace Prevue, a week after winning the Yannick Gingras will be in the bike behind 3 Brother Stable's JK Endofanera for the sport's leading trainer, Ron Burke. Big Boy Dreams, owned by Dominick Rosato, was the longshot winner of November's recent $186,550 Matron Final driven by another Hall of Famer, Ron Pierce. All Bets Off, an 11-time winner this year for the ownership of Baldachino, Shelswell, Panhellenic and Burke Racing stable, has impressive credentials, winning the $500,000 Messenger Stake, $400,000 Milstein at Northfield and the New York Sire Stakes championship, will be in the hands of Matt Kakaley. The other upset minded participants are J&T Silva, TLP stables and Deo Volente Farms' Somewhere In LA, with Tim Tetrick driving for trainer Jimmy Takter with driver Tim Tetrick and National Debt, owned by Blair and Emma Corbeil, Kelly Hoerdt and J&T Silva Stables' National Debt trained by Ron Coyne with Corey Callahan in the driver's seat. . In the $100,000 DSBF freshman pace final, Remember Me VK (Montrell Teague), fresh from a decisive 1:51.4 victory prelim win, the all-time fastest win in the DSBF program. Bobby Wyatt trains for owners Ron Benton and Sharon Wyatt. Last week, Sonofa Sizzle, owned by Mike White and trained by Gary Green, was a strong second. Hall of Famer David Miller will be in the bike. Howard Taylor's Smoking Joey brings a three-race win streak with Corey Callahan at the controls for meet leading trainer Doug Lewis. Art Stafford Jr. will pilot Scott Woogen's homebred KJ Ben who along with Dashboard racing for trainer Rich Ringler and owners Joann King and Maria Ringler are the only other starters to win a prelim. Dover Downs Extra Led by the only two $1-million winning three-year-old male pacers this season, McWicked, fresh from Breeders Crown and Progress Pace Prevue wins, and JK Endofanera, lead a select field of six in the $301,650 Progress Pace. McWicked won the Prevue with the fastest clocking at the track this meet, 1:48.4. ----------------------------------------------- The Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) two-year-old program for two-year-olds comes to a close with the last two $100,000 finals Sunday and Monday. After two weeks of $20,000 preliminaries, the top eight point-getters among male pacers take part in the $100,000 final Sunday. Next the fillies, led by unbeaten Purrfect Bags and the fast Totally Rusty, meet on Monday in a $100,000 final ------------------------------------------------- The Delaware harness racing community was saddened this week by the passing of Robert "Bobby" Botch, one of its most popular horsemen. Botch was one of the most "unforgettable characters" for his wit, storytelling and sociability. Botch, who trained horses which raced at Dover Downs, Harrington and the old Georgetown raceway and all Maryland harness tracks. holds the distinction of being the trainer of the first horse to win the feature race on opening day of the first though bred meet in 1968 and a few months late, the first harness feature race. Condolences to his wife and sons, Gary and Rodger, both harness horsemen. ----------------------------------------------- Ross Wolfenden had a banner week. Along with driving Penny Paratrooper to victory in the $100,000 DSBF frosh filly final, Wolfenden then became a member of the 6,000-win club on Tuesday, a three-win day. ----------------------------------------------- A change in post position made a big difference in the Thursday feature $25,000 Delaware Special. Drawing the rail after being on the outside the week before, Believe This Bob closed between horses to win the feature race with Brett Brittingham at the controls. --------------------------------------------- With six wins on Thursday, Corley Callahan lengthened his big lead in the early weeks of the 2014-2015 seasons. Callahan, who is seeking his sixth straight track title, now has 66 wins and a UDRS or batting average of .389. Allan Davis is second in the standing with 50. Ross Wolfenden had another big week and is third with 37. Vic Kirby hold fourth- place with 34 wins. Tony Morgan completes the top five with 30 winners. ----------------------------------------------------- Doug Lewis with 20 wins and Wayne Givens, 19, are in a dog-fight for leading trainer honors. Jim King is third with 14 wins. Nick Surick is in third place with nine wins. Joe Hundertpfund, fourth, with eight wins. Dylan Davis, Nick Surick and Joe Hundertpfund are tied for fifth with 11 wins apiece. ------------------------------------------------------ The long eight-race win-streak of Willow Mill Faith came to a close on Monday, in a Delaware $7,500-$10,000 Claiming Handicap. Quick Pulse Daisy moved past on the backstretch on the way to a 1:55 victory. ------------------------------------------------- Dover Downs races Sundays at 5:30 p.m. and weekdays, Monday through Thursday beginning at 4:30 p.m. It is suggested that those who would enjoy watching races from the Winners Circle restaurant should call for reservations, phone 302-674-4600. There is no charge for parking or admission at Dover Downs. Daily simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred racing daily begins 12 Noon until 12 Midnight. For those planning to watch racing and dine in the Winner's Circle Restaurant, reservations are suggested. Call 302-674-4600. The DSBF two-year-old $100,000 championship heads the Monday card. An $18,000 Open trot is the feature on the regular card. Dover Downs races Monday through Thursday beginning at 4:30 p.m. and Sundays at 5:30 p.m. All eight Matron Stakes will head the Thursday, Nov. 6 program. There is no charge for parking or admission at Dover Downs. Daily simulcasting of harness and thoroughbred racing daily begins 12 Noon until 12 Midnight. For those planning to watch racing and dine in the Winner's Circle Restaurant, reservations are suggested. Call 302-674-4600. Marv Bachrad

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