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This Week: The 2019 Grand Circuit season has come to a close. The 2020 schedule will be released in January. Last time: After working to catch cover up the far side, Shake That House ($20.20) vaulted three-wide off the final turn to collar Captain Crunch in the $335,000 Hap Hansen Progress Pace final for 3-year-old colts and geldings on Wednesday night (Nov. 27) at Dover Downs. Shake That House tracked down Captain Crunch to prevail by a widening neck in 1:50.1. Fotowon photo. The sophomore son of American Ideal landed in sixth early while 3-5 favorite Captain Crunch (Yannick Gingras) worked to clear American Mercury (Tyler Buter) through a :26 first quarter. As Captain Crunch, who won the elimination heat, sped along through a :53.4 half, Tim Tetrick angled Shake That House third-over - but the pair lost their cover upon reaching the backstretch. While the first-over Dancin Lou (Andy McCarthy) sustained gradual headway up the far side, the second-over Semi Tough (David Miller) angled back to the pegs upon straightening, forcing Shake That House to close a three-length gap in the outer tier into a 1:21 third split. Despite the extra work he endured, Shake That House had ample energy to swing three-wide around a stalled Dancin Lou well above the eighth pole and tracked down Captain Crunch to prevail by a widening neck in 1:50.1. U S Captain (Dexter Dunn), who was locked in from mid-division, rallied up the open stretch to take third. Shake That House, who also won the Max Hempt Memorial at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in June, eclipsed the $500,000 mark in seasonal earnings with the 10th victory of his career. Chris Oakes trains Shake That House for Crawford Farms Racing, Alan Johnston and the Northfork Racing Stable. Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2019, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2019 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the final leaders. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 1,416.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 1,373; 3. Dexter Dunn - 1,054; 4. David Miller - 960; 5. Andrew McCarthy - 828. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,322; 2. Tony Alagna - 892; 3. Nancy Johansson - 727; 4. Ake Svanstedt - 677; 5. Marcus Melander - 628. Owners: 1. Courant Inc. - 289.5; 2. Brad Grant - 273; 3. Burke Racing Stable - 242.5; 4. Robert Key - 226; 5. Fashion Farms - 224.5. Looking ahead: The 2020 Grand Circuit schedule will be released in January. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

Cream Ridge, NJ - 12/3/19 - See who the 377 harness racing trotters and pacers under the Standardbred Retirement Foundation's, (SRF) expense and care today that are in need of your generosity on #Giving Tuesday, AdoptaHorse.org.   An anonymous donor will match every dollar donated up to $12,500, giving $25,000 to these horses that she, you, and so many others have given so much.   These are the horses with have earnings of over $10,000,000. but, not for them. As of this morning SRF has received $5,250 of the $12,500 match gift offer leaving $7,250 in donations so desperately in need. Please make your day of giving one that will help a horse in need at SRF; the whinnies will resonate with thanks.   Gifts, and sponsorship of a horse may be made through SRF's website at Adoptahorse.org or directly by contacting Tammy at 609-738-3255. For questions by email at SRFHorsesandKids@gmail.com. Thank you so very much for your support. Donate to SRF Today   From the Standardbred Retirement Foundation    

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, December 3, 2019-- Every racetrack has them, folks whose names don't appear in the program, but without whom the harness racing program doesn't come close to getting off the ground. Yonkers Raceway is no exception. The joint doesn't conduct 230-odd cards a year with very few hitches without them. Do not refer to them as innominate. Do refer to them as invaluable. Arthur Webb is one such person. To friends, of which he counts many, he's just 'Zeke,' and Zeke the caretaker is retiring after 50 years when Yonkers' 2019 season ends Tuesday night, Dec. 17th. "It's time," Zeke said. "At least that what my wife (Mary) told me." It seems Zeke, a 67-year-old native North Carolinian ('Running Rapids, near the Virginia line'), had no choice but to end up with horses. His grandparents worked with them, while his two sisters and seven brothers--all older--were part of the Roosevelt and Yonkers Raceways circuit. As for Zeke, who still resides in dearly-departed Roosevelt's Long Island locale of Westbury, his half-century of keeping the trotters and pacers healthy and racing began with Frank Popfinger. After Popfinger ("I took care of his first 2:00 pacer, Goodnuff"), it was John Paton ("26-27 years"), then Mike Sorentino Jr. and, eventually, Don Sider. Ask Zeke what's changed in the industry and he mentions the sort of horses now filling the entry box. "It's a lot of claimers now," he said. "When I first started, there were the ('letter-classified') horses. Trainers had them longer. Now, so many more claimers and we don't have a bonding with them the way we used to. It's lost some of the sport." Then, there's the equipment. "Everything was so much heavier then," he said. "The hopples, the bike, everything. Now, with the quick hitch and the other improvements, it's so much easier for the horse, especially young ones. "They're able to be 'broken' quicker so they don't have to think as much. They get more confident, and I really think they sense if you like them." It's the affection that Zeke made a point of reinforcing to his inquisitor. "You have to love the animal," he said. "I didn't choose to do this for the money. For me, happiness is more important than money." (For his part, Zeke, along with late brother, Van (Sylvanious), enjoyed modest ownership success with the pacer Redd Fox during the last half of the pacer's decade-long [1997-2007] career.) "He even won a (Yonkers) race on my 50th birthday, Sept. 26, 2002. Ask Zeke what he's going to miss and "It just being here. We're going to the Carolinas to be with our daughter, Yolanda, but when the weather warms up, I'm going to come back Ask Zeke if he'd choose this work all over again, he politely offers a correction. "I haven't been working," Arthur Webb said, "I've been enjoying myself." One last question before we go..."Zeke?" "I was growing up and there was an older guy, Zeke Butler, who ran a tobacco tractor. He didn't move too fast and everyone said I was as slow as old Zeke Butler. "I didn't much care for the nickname at first, but since everyone starting calling me Zeke, I sort of went along with it." Alrighty then. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway  

DAYTON, OH. - Driver Josh Sutton slugged a 'Grand Slam' at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Monday afternoon (Dec. 2), scoring with three harness racing favorites and polishing things off by guiding a longshot to the winner's circle in the nightcap of the 14-race matinee.   Sutton started his strong day steering Rockaholic to a 1:55.4 score in a minimum claiming event for trainer A. J. Carlo, kicking back $5.60 to his mutuel backers. Next up was a 1:54.1 tally with Always A Fighter ($4.40) for owner-trainer Clint Binkley; followed by a winning 1:55.2 clocking with Overlord ($3.20) in a mid-range condition-claiming event for conditioner Jeff Cullipher.   Not content with a hat trick, Sutton surprised with a $36.60 winner in the 1:56.2 finale for bottom claimers. It was just the second seasonal triumph in 28 starts for Krusty The Clown, trained by Jeff Brewer.   Sutton was recently named to Team Hollywood Dayton, a quintet of local top drivers who will face off against Northfield Park's best on Friday, December 13 in the 'Buckeye Battle', an eight-race contest to benefit the Greater Dayton Disaster Relief Fund and determine bragging rights for 2019 between northern Ohio and southern Ohio's best drivers.   The Ohio Harness Horsemens Association and Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway have put up $3000 in prize money for the contest, which all ten competitors from both sides have agreed to donate to the Relief Fund, which has been busy rebuilding neighborhoods following catastrophic tornados that ravished parts of Dayton in May; and aiding families affected by the horrific mass shooting in the Oregon District of the city in August.   From Hollywood Dayton Raceway  

WASHINGTON, PA, Dec. 2, 2019 -- Icanflylikeanangel relentlessly pressured the harness racing leader, Final Breath, passed him in mid-stretch and went on to capture Monday's $20,000 Open Handicap Trot at The Meadows. Icanflylikeanangel was fifth past the half when Mike Wilder sent him first up. Despite having to negotiate a "good" surface, the 5-year-old Archangel-Fox Valley London gelding wore down Final Breath and prevailed in 1:54, matching his career best. Whats The Word shot the Lightning Lane for second, 1-1/4 lengths back, while Final Breath saved show. Randy Bendis trains Icanflylikeanangel, who extended his career bankroll to $291,776, and owns with Pollack Racing LLC. Tony Hall and Wilder each piloted four winners on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Tuesday when the program features a $68,077.56 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

YONKERS, NY, Monday, December 2, 2019--With inclement weather around the New York metropolitan area, Yonkers Raceway has cancelled its live harness racing program for Monday evening (Dec. 2nd). It's the fifth cancellation of 2019. Evening simulcasting has also been scrapped (afternoon simulcasting was not scheduled). Live racing is set to resume Tuesday evening (Dec. 3rd), with the usual first post of 6:50 PM. Horsemen note that the double-draw for Friday and Saturday (Dec. 6th and 7th) continues as scheduled, with the entry box closing at 3:30 PM. With Monday evening’s (Dec. 2nd) card a casualty of the weather, Yonkers Raceway’s Tuesday night (Dec. 3rd) Pick 5 wager now starts with a carryover of $3,942.61 and a $15,000 guaranteed pool. The guarantee has been approved by the New York State Gaming Commission and is in conjunction with the U.S. Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program. The Pick 5 is a 50-cent base wager comprising races 7 through 11 Tuesday night. It has no consolation payoff, meaning if no one selects all five winners (as was the case Saturday evening), the entire pool (minus takeout) moves to the next racing program. For more information, please contact the race office at (914) 457-2627. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway    

Pompano Beach, FL...December 2, 2019...Pompano Park played host to the best of the best on Sunday (December 1) with $414,000 up for grabs as the FSBOA presented the 2019 edition of Super Night, a showcase of the top tharness racing wo and three year-olds in Florida. On the equine side of the ledger, the grand three year-old filly Natasha won her 15th straight in the $55,325 Breeders Stake for Wally Hennessey and Zaza Boy took top honors in the $54,090 companion pace for the boys. A complete wrap follows: $55,325 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD PACING FILLIES (NB) The splendid Six of Diamonds filly Natasha took home the top prize for driver Wally Hennessey, stopping the timer in a lifetime best 1:53. Trained by Kim Sears for owner-husband Jay, Natasha survived the outside post and a sizzling opening panel of :26.2 before subsequent fractions of :57 and 1:24.3 precluded a :28.2 finale to hit the wire two lengths clear of Prairie Cougar (Peter Wrenn) with Prairie Westerngal (Kevin Wallis) next. Caleb's Diamond T, closing fastest of all, finished fourth while Rockin Ellie picked up the final award in this classy septet of fillies. Said Hennessey after the race, "I have always said this filly is a 'freak' and she really proved her merit tonight after facing tough rivals like this, the outside post and a trying first quarter." Natasha Is now 7-for-7 this semester with her career earnings vaulting to $129,956. Interesting to note that the first three finishers all had drivers with more than 10,000 wins each with the total number of driving wins for all seven drivers totaled 46,502. $52,075 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD TROTTING COLTS/GELDINGS (NB) In a race where the final chart looked like a "tic-tac-toe" board with all the "x's," Rhinestone Cowboy, handled by Mike Micallef, rallied from a miscue of his own on the backstretch to win in a lifetime best 2:01.2. The son of Proud Bushy, trained by KIm Sears for owners Jay Sears and John Campagnuolo, came from 10 lengths out of it around the final bend to, first, collar the leading Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham) and, then, hold off the surging Prairie Gold Mine (Wally Hennessey) to score by three-parts-of-a-length over the latter with Prairie Romeo next. Prairie Tornado and YD Dream Machine completed the order of finish. As the wings folded, Prairie Romeo used his inside post to perfection and roared through an opening panel of :28.1 while building a five length lead over YD Dream Machine. That's when things began to get interesting as YD Dream Machine made a miscue bothering Prairie Gold Mine with Rhinestone Cowboy taking up the chase in second but four lengths away halfway through in :59 with Prairie Tornado improving his position two spots to third. On the backside, Rhinestone Cowboy made a break and found himself 10 lengths away around the final bend. But, after regaining his composure, Rhinestone Cowboy kept churning along, collaring the leader at mid-stretch and then holding off a furious late surge by Prairie Gold Mine. A smiling Micallef said after the race, "This proves the old adage 'you never give up!' When he made that jump on the backside, I thought we were out of the ballgame but you never know. He caught pretty quickly and raced very well after that...and that's what really counted here." Rhinestone Cowboy now has a 2-2-3 scorecard in seven starts with earnings of $444,481. $52,500 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD PACING FILLIES (NB) Laurie Lee, driven by Wally Hennessey, led every long stride of her mile to score a handy win in 1:56.4--this after carving up panels of :28.1, :58.2 and 1:27.3 along the way. The daughter of Royel Millennium hit the line 3 1/2 lengths clear over the pocket-sitting Pocahontas Cam (Kevin Wallis) with Prairie Fashion (Dave Ingraham) next. Alil Touch Of Pink and Gold Star Igotdis followed. Trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, Laurie Lee, named after one of the more prominent breeders in Florida, scored her fourth win of the year in nine starts, pushing her earnings just under the $50,000 plateau--$49,975 to be precise. $51,540 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD TROTTING FILLIES (NB) Prairie Delight, driven by Wally Hennessey, stalked the pacesetter until the final bend before tilting out and overtaking the leader turning for home and on to a 3 1/4 length score in 2:03.4. Trained by Jim McDonald, who co-owns with wife Dona and Bill Bigler, this daughter of Shibboleth Hanover allowed Callin On Sunday, handled by Mike Simons, cut the mustard through panels of :29.1, :59.3 and 1:30.2 before swooping by to the handy score--her sixth of the year in seven starts. Whitney Annette (Dave Ingraham) was next while Proud Money and Brasen Bo completed the field. Prairie Delight now sports earnings of $54,091. $50,750 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD TROTTING GELDINGS (NB) Pacing Pretty Stables' Damien Hall, with Wally Hennessey handling the lines for trainer Jim McDonald, led gate-to-wire to keep his 2019 season unblemished--now six-for-six--with a lifetime best 1:58 performance. This altered son of Cash Hall, once again, led at every pole through panels of :29.1, :59.4 and 1:284 before a :29.1 finale sealed the deal over Savin Park (MIke Micallef), Prairie Gem (Peter Wrenn) was next, followed by McGoldrick. Damien Hall shows all "1's" in his 30 charted points of call and has banked $53,024 lifetime--$42,631 this semester. $49,250 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD TROTTING FILLIES (NB) Proud Sophie, with Dave Ingraham in the bike, used her individual final half in :57.4 to squeak by a stubborn Kerry B (Wally Hennessey) in 2:00.4. Pocket-sitting Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn) finished third in this trio. The winner, a daughter of Proud Bushy, was away last allowing Kerry B the advantage of carding soft panels of :30.2 and 1:02.2. On the backside, the pace quickened as Proud Sophie tilted out and began gnawing forward, drawing on even terms with Kerry B around the final bend with three-quarters clocked in 1:31.2. From there, it was a war all the way home as Proud Sophie edged by once they straightened away and gutted out the game win on the wire. Trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and Dr. David Fishman, Proud Sophie has never been worse than second in her 12 lifetime starts (seven wins) and now sports bounty of $108,740. $49,380 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD PACING COLTS/GELDINGS (NB) In a war that lasted just about the entire mile, Hurrikaanekingjames, with Carl Garofalo in his sulky, held off the furious late binge of Repeal Or Replace (Andy Santeramo) to win in 1:53.4, a new lifetime best. Shuldahadahunemoon (Mike Simons) was third in this trio. At the outset, both Hurrikanekingjames and Repeal Or Replace went in search of the lead and, at the opener in :27.1, the latter stuck his head in front but was forced back in the pocked as he couldn't clear. On they flew through fractions of :55.4 and 1:24.3 with Hurrikanekingjames now encountered by Repeal Or Replace turning for home. They went tooth and nail right to the wire with Hurricanekingjames surviving the onslaught to prevail by a half length. John McDermott, Jr. trains the son of So Surreal for Jonathan Klee Racing, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investment Group and George Vierno with the winner now showing earnings of $103,780. Driver Carl Garofalo, by the way, drove in six races since Pompano Park opened one month ago and has won all six! $54,090 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD PACING COLTS/GELDINGS Zaza Boy, with Mike Micallef handling the lines, stalked the pacesetting Mister Marvalous (Wally Hennessey) and went on to score a handy win in 1:53.4 over the late charging Gold Star Yoder (James Yoder). JB's Boomerang (Bryce Fenn) was third over Mister Marvalous while Gold Star Hefner earned the minor award in a field scratched down to five. Zaza Boy and Mister Marvalous went warring as the gate sprung clear with the latter taking command just short of the opener in a hot :26.2. Hennessey then got a bit of a breather as he reached the half in :56.3. On the backside, the pace began to quicken with Mister Marvalous still in front past the third station in 1:25.1 with Zaza Boy now looming boldly along side. Once they straightened away, Zaza Boy opened daylight and was never in danger as Gold Star Yoder closed with sharp pace to finish 1 1/2 lengths away. Micallef had high praise for the winner saying, "Michile and Rod (Lorenzo) have had him sharp for a good, long time and he was become very handy to handle--not headstrong. I think the fact that he's learned to relax has helped his game immensely." Rod Lorenzo owns Zaza Boy in partnership with Souren Hovsepian. The sophomore gelded son of Rockingcam now has $68,530 in 2019 and $93,707 lifetime. As the 2 to 1 second choice, Zaza Boy paid $6.20 to win. Driver Wally Hennessey had a six-pack on Super Night while Kim Sears had a grand slam on the training side of the ledger. Racing continues Monday with first post set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry, for the FSBOA and Pompano Park                      

Goshen, NY - When the Monticello-Goshen Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association holds their 61st annual Awards Banquet, on Sunday, December 15, 2019, Dave Brower will receive the Phil Pines Award for his outstanding media coverage of the sport of Harness Racing. No stranger to the bright lights of Metropolitan area Standardbred sport, Dave Brower has been a fan of harness racing since childhood when his dad would bring him to the original "new" Big M back in the late 1970s. Growing up in nearby Passaic, New Jersey, just five minutes from the Meadowlands Racetrack, the ace handicapper and television personality has always had his finger on the pulse of the industry. While attending classes at St. John's University he also rubbed horses on the backstretch for Rick Farrington, John Conte and Randy Perry during the late 80s and early 90s along with working as an intern in the publicity department under Ellen Harvey. After graduating with a degree in journalism in 1991 he has held many positions in and around the top floor of the Meadowlands. "I operated the teletimer, was a chart caller for Sport's Eye and then became the morning line odds maker and program comments producer...all while sitting two seats to the left of Ray Brienza in the press box," Brower recalls with pride. "There was a lot of action in the press box in those days." As the in-house television and simulcast broadcasts grew, Brower got more opportunities to work in front of the camera. Brower, along with Gary Seibel, were the first hosts of TVG's Drive Time at the Meadowlands. Focusing on racing at the East Rutherford mecca, the duo provided on-site analysis and interviews during the Campbell-O'Donnell era. That experience proved to be serendipitous as the pair now team up annually for CBS Sports Net to host the live Hambletonian Day television coverage. "Live broadcasts are a true test of your abilities. You have to have faith in yourself, you gotta get it right. It's quite an adrenaline rush," Brower exclaims. "It is one of my favorite parts of the job." Dave Brower is good at it too! In fact, the right people have taken notice. He also anchors the Jug Week simulcast show and was brought in to provide color at the Red Mile this past season. But Brower is quick to give credit to his colleagues for planning and executing the broadcasts. "The TV department develops replays, we have voice checks, camera checks, the announcer adapts the content into the program sequence and preview highlights, and so on. There are hours, sometimes days, of advance notes and preparations." To this day, aside from his current handicapping duties he still anchors the Racing from the Meadowlands broadcast. His past and present colleagues read like a who's who in harness communicators: Sam McKee, Hollywood Heyden, Ken Warkentin, Dave Little, Gabe Prewitt, etc. Also very active on social media, many folks get their first breaking news about the night's racing card from Brower's Twitter and Facebook feed. Drivers changes, scratches, special guests...Dave sees it all first and then informs the public. But it's all in a day's work and the harness racing lifer takes it all in stride. "A lot has changed since we opened the Star Ledger to see what Ray Brienza had to say." In addition to the year-end awards for horses and horse people from the local tracks, the Monticello-Goshen chapter will also honor Mickey Burke (Lifetime Achievement Award); Noelle Duspiva (Excelsior Award); Barbara Martinez (Amy Bull Crist Distinguished Service Award); Larry Lederman (John Gilmour Good Guy Award); Purple Haze Stable (Cradle of the Trotter Breeders Award); Tony Verruso (Amateur Driver); Joe Chindano, Jr. (Rising Star), etc. Tickets for the gala event at The Fountains at Wallkill Golf Club, Middletown, NY, can be reserved by contacting Shawn Wiles at (845) 794-4100 extension 458 or Email: swiles@empireresorts.com. To place a congratulatory ad in the souvenir journal, please contact Chris Tully at (845) 807-7538 or Email: tullytrot@yahoo.com. by Chris Tully, for the Monticello-Goshen Chapter of USHWA  

Due to the forecasted winter weather the Meadowlands Racetrack and Quincy Enunwa have postponed tonight's Toy Collection Drive. The event that benefits Toys for Tots and Harlem Grown will be rescheduled for later this month. Once a date has been determined it will be posted at PlayMeadowlands.com From the Meadowlands Media Department

The agenda and supporting materials for the upcoming ARCI Model Rules Committee meeting are now available. Use the button below to access the committee's website: arcimodelrules.online. The ARCI Model Rules Committee meeting will take place at the Westin LaPaloma Resort, Tucson, Arizona, USA on Thursday, December 12, 2019 at 1:30pm - 5:00pm. If you have yet to register for the meeting, you may do so at no-cost by using the link below. Please note that the meeting agenda is subject to modification. Additional notifications will be made as necessary. ARCI Model Rules Committee Meeting Agenda and Materials REGISTER (no cost) FOR THE MEETING   From the ARCI

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2019 Caretaker of the Year. The award, sponsored by Art Zubrod and Leah Cheverie's Fair Island Farm in conjunction with the United States Harness Writers Association (USHWA), recognizes the unsung heroes of the sport - the caretakers who maintain the health and welfare of the horses on a daily basis. Initially titled Groom of the Year Award when first presented in 1982, the honor was instituted as a result of a suggestion made by Delvin Miller at the annual Harness Tracks of America meeting when he received HTA's Stanley F. Bergstein Messenger Award. Previously sponsored annually by HTA and Hanover Shoe Farms, the tradition lapsed in 2014 but was re-established in 2015 by Hard Rock Northfield Park and USHWA, with Fair Island Farm coming on this year. "We have been presenting trophies to the winning caretakers during the Grand Circuit meet at The Red Mile for a couple of years now, so we are very honored and happy to be able to now recognize the national Caretaker of the Year," said Zubrod. The Fair Island Farm Caretaker of the Year will receive a cash prize of $500, a trophy, and transportation costs to the USHWA Dan Patch Awards banquet in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday evening, Feb. 23, 2020, where he or she will be recognized. The winner will also enjoy a two-night stay at Rosen Shingle Creek, host hotel for the USHWA activities, as well as two complimentary dinner tickets. "Caretakers are the day-to-day unsung heroes of the industry, long before and after the spotlight of the grandstand lights," said USHWA President Shawn Wiles. "This cadre toils in anonymity, not looking for a pat on the back, but always looking out for the best interests of their charges health and welfare. We are fortunate to have many outstanding caretakers in our industry to look after our equine athletes." Any caretaker working for any stable or farm in North America is eligible to be the Fair Island Farm Caretaker of the Year. All that is needed to nominate is a letter or email, 200 words minimum, from an individual or group detailing the skills and special qualities of the caretaker. The winner will be chosen by a seven-person selection committee comprised of USHWA members, all of whom are former caretakers: Tim Bojarski (chair), Tom Charters, Moira Fanning, Dean Hoffman, Rob Pennington, Kim Rinker and Shawn Wiles. All nomination letters and emails must be received and/or postmarked by Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, and sent to chairman Bojarski at a159star@gmail.com or mailed to Tim Bojarski, 7523 Maple Road, Akron, N.Y. 14001. (USHWA) From the United States Harness Writers Association

Washington, PA – December 1, 2019 – The Meadows Racetrack and Casino is happy to announce Jeff Zidek as the new harness racing announcer replacing Roger Huston who resigned in November. Zidek, a native of North Apollo, PA., has been calling races for 32 years as the backup announcer for Huston since 1987 as well as County Fairs in Pennsylvania and Ohio.   Zidek’s racing resume is lengthy, working in all aspects of the sport. He has owned and trained Standardbreds, worked for more than 10 years as a publicist for the Pennsylvania Harness Racing Commission serving the PA Fair circuit, and has worked as a marketing consultant for the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association, as well as a track handicapper at The Meadows.   His professional career outside of harness racing includes stints at Fox Sports Pittsburgh and Fox Sports Radio as an on-air host, and he has spent the past 17 years as the Sports Information Director at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa.   “I’ve had a great career both in and outside of the racing industry, but for me, this is like coming home,” said Zidek.   “The Meadows gave me my first opportunity in broadcasting, and then gave me my first opportunity in public relations and marketing. I built my career off that foundation, and now I get to come back home and serve the racing community on a full-time basis again. I can’t wait to get started.”   “The Meadows is thrilled to have Zidek join the team as the Announcer, his talents are unlimited and we look forward to working together to make The Meadows better than ever”, said Mark Loewe, Vice President of Racing for The Meadows.   Zidek will begin his new position December 6.   by Mark J. Loewe, for The Meadows

Chester, PA --  Harness racing horsemen are advised that this week's qualifiers at Harrah's Philadelphia have been moved from Tuesday (Dec. 3) to Thursday (Dec. 5).   Qualifiers will take place before the pari-mutuel program and will begin at 11:15 a.m. Eastern.   After coming off a second-place finish in his Nov. 10 start and missing his Nov. 16 appointment due to sickness, Nutcracker Sweet ($13.60) bounced back on a rainy Sunday afternoon (Dec. 1) at Harrah's Philadelphia, taking a $14,500 co-featured upper-level conditioned pace in 1:52.4. Andy McCarthy fired Nutcracker Sweet to the fore from the outside part of the gate, and the pair controlled early splits of :28 and :56.2 before facing a mild first-over challenge from odds-on favorite Maroma Beach (Tim Tetrick) up the backstretch. Nutcracker Sweet was nudged along past three-quarters in 1:24.1 before edging away to a two-length lead at the top of the stretch and holding sway from two late-emerging rivals. Glacis (Pat Lachance) shook free in the stretch to halve that lead at the winning post, while Nine Ways (Tony Morgan) held third from the pocket. Nutcracker Sweet keyed a 7-5-3-4-1 combination in the Jackpot Hi-5 which returned $3,768.76. Tom Cancelliere trains the 4-year-old Bettor's Delight entire for John Cancelliere. In a $16,000 co-featured conditioned pace, Machpaperscissors ($5.60) earned his third win in as many starts for trainer Eric Ell and owners Ken Wood, Bill Dittmar Jr., Stephen Iaquinta and Minisink Farms, collaring Odds On Boca Raton from the pocket in 1:53.4. Tim Tetrick drove the 3-year-old Mach Three gelding. Live racing returns to Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon (Dec. 4); first post is 12:25 p.m. Eastern.   by James Witherite, for Harrah's Philadelphia     

Cash Me Out (Cash Hall) is the favorite for the Trotter of the Year award this season at Saratoga Casino Hotel and has a chance to be the Horse of the Year as well. On Sunday afternoon, the millionaire won the Open Trot for the eighth time this season. Brett Crawford sat behind the Kyle Spagnola trainee who cruised to an easy lead to overcome his assigned outside post position. After making it to the top with ease, the eight year old traveled unopposed in a first half that went in 58 seconds. Never facing much of a challenge, Cash Me Out checked in at three quarters in 1:26.4 and began to expand his lead around the final turn. Cartier Volo (Frank Coppola Jr), another nominee for Trotter of the Year this season, sat the pocket to Cash Me Out and finished second in the mile that was clocked in 1:55.4 on a snowy afternoon in upstate New York. Cash Me Out paid $7.90 to win and led an exacta with Cartier Volo second that returned $28.80. Trixie Dust (Alek Chartrand), the runner-up to Cash Me Out last week, finished third on Sunday and completed a triple that came back $116.50. Cash Me Out, who is owned by the Traylor Racing Stable of Ballston Spa, NY, has piled up twelve wins in 2019 and now has 49 victories in his 198 lifetime starts en route to over $1.1 million in earnings. Live racing resumes on Wednesday afternoon with a first post time set for 12 Noon. There will a $1,396 carryover in the Pick Five pool. The Pick Five is a 50 cent minimum wager and starts in the matinee's first race. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway  

Evident Beauty has been selected as the New Jersey Sire Stakes' harness racing Horse of the Year for 2019. The award, which is voted annually by the New Jersey Sire Stakes Board of Trustees, is based solely on performances in races for New Jersey-sired horses, including NJSS-sponsored races and other major stakes for NJ-sired or bred horses. Evident Beauty, by Trixton out of the Explosive Matter mare Struck By Lindy, swept the preliminary legs and final of her division at the Meadowlands. A winner of $535,234 in 2019 the three-year-old filly trotter won eight of her sixteen starts this year. Regular driver Dave Miller handled Evident Beauty in all her races this season. With a record of 1:55.2 which she took in winning the Premier Division final at The Meadowlands, she was also victorious in open company with wins in the $124,000 Del Miller at the Meadowlands, the $282,000 Elegant Image at Woodbine Mohawk, and the $135 ,000 Moni Maker at Hoosier Park. Evident Beauty is owned by Melvin Hartman of Ottawa, Canada, Little E LLC of New York, and RAW Equine of Burlington, Ontario. Richard "Nifty" Norman trained the filly that was bred by White Birch Farm of Allentown, NJ. Evident Beauty's connections will be honored at the 63rd annual Breeder Awards Luncheon on January 26, 2020 at the Hilton Gardens Inn in Hamilton, New Jersey.   Christopher Castens

Due to the severe winter storm impacting the area and hazardous driving conditions for horsemen, patrons and employees, live harness racing and simulcasting is cancelled for Monday December 2.   Thursdays draw will be held on Tuesday, December 3, box closes at 9am.   Live Racing and Simulcasting will resume on Tuesday December 3, - 12:25 Post Time.     Shawn Wiles Director of Racing & Facilities Monticello, NY 12701

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