Day At The Track
Bronson Xerri

Xerri's family in drugs investigation

The Australian Anti-Doping Authority has taken an interest in the family of Bronson Xerri and its colourful history as it investigates criminal links around the supply of anabolic steroids following the Cronulla teenager’s positive drugs test. Xerri, 19, has been provisionally stood down and is facing a suspension of up to four years after returning a positive A-sample to the banned substances exogenous testosterone, androsterone, etiocholanolone and 5b-androstane-3a,17b-diol when target tested following a tip-off last November. While the doping violation is yet to be confirmed with a B sample, the attention of ASADA investigators is now very much on trying to establish whether there are criminal links to the distribution of the substances found in Xerri’s system. It was a year-long Australian Crime Commission investigation into sports, prohibited substances and organised crime that preceded the Cronulla and Essendon doping scandals in the last decade. According to a source with knowledge of ASADA's Xerri probe, there is a particular interest in the player's family. The Herald can reveal the Sharks youngster’s 28-year-old brother Troy was sentenced to an aggregate term of five years imprisonment in 2014 over drugs charges. Troy was initially one of eight men, including two teenagers, who were charged over drugs supply in south-west Sydney eight years ago. An array of illegal substances from prescription drugs including steroids, valium and xanax, ammunition and a bayonet knife were seized during raids on premises in Merrylands, Greystanes, Ermington and Granville. Police also found more than $50,000 in cash. It resulted in Troy Xerri facing Parramatta Local Court on charges of supplying a commercial quantity of a prohibited drug and take part in supply of a prohibited drug. His jail term included a non-parole period of two years and six months. ASADA investigators seized Bronson Xerri’s phone briefly this week to download data from it. A call to the Xerri home on Friday went unanswered. Xerri has previously spoken of the importance of his family, which has connections to the harness racing industry, during his rapid rugby league rise. His other older brother Dylan presented him with his maiden first-grade jersey before his NRL debut last year. To read the full article in The Sydney Morning Herald click on this link.

Orlando Vici, harness racing

Orlando Vici strongly represented in Elitloppet

The French stallion Orlando Vici, a winner of nine Group races and now a leading sire in France and Sweden, has the joint highest entry with three harness racing runners in this year’s Elitloppet, to be contested at Solvalla, Sweden on Sunday night (May 31). Orlando Vici’s three contestants in the ‘Sprint World Championship of Trotting’ are Chief Orlando, a seven-year-old Norwegian bred gelding, the brilliant Norwegian bred, Danish owned seven-year-old gelding Looking Superb, and the fast Swedish seven-year-old entire Racing Mange. Chief Orlando (barrier 5) and Looking Superb (7) will contest the first heat, while Racing Mange will start from the No. 6 gate in the second elimination. The three are all expected to be well in line for a Grand Final berth. Looking Superb captured the Prix Tenor de Baune in 2018 and the Prix de L’Atlantique in 2019 and finished runner-up to Belina Josselyn in the 2019 Grand Prix d’Amerique; Racing Mange has won Group races in Sweden, Denmark and Finland and is the fastest trotter in Sweden this year, while Chief Orlando has won at Group level in Finland and was narrowly beaten in last year’s Sweden Cup. Racing Mange is the fastest trotter in Sweden this year Besides his successes at the stud in Europe, Orlando Vici has made a spectacular start as a sire in Australia. In his first season he left 11 foals – now four-year-olds - and all 11 have raced, and 10 are winners.  They include the NSW Trotters Derby winner Xebec (Tr 1:58), Beau Garcon, winner of the Breeders Crown 2YO Silver), Deneuve Star (Tr 1:56.6), Just Believe Tr 1:59 (Vicbred 3YO Silver), Belltopperboy (Tr 1:59.2), the Melton winners Montpellier (Tr 1:59.8) and Brandlo Prince, and Orlando Storm (Maryborough Oaks). Orlando Vici’s frozen semen is available to breeders in Australia and New Zealand from Haras Des Trotteurs, where Love You, Quaker Jet and Volstead head a select sire list. By Peter Wharton

Dadndave,Harness racing

Dadndave on a path to NZ Cup

Tim Trathen knows Dadndave isn’t your usual New Zealand Cup horse. But that won’t stop him dreaming the dream of the second Tuesday in November after the four-year-old’s brave comeback win at Addington on Friday night. The little pacer with the big heart combined gate speed and tenacity in the hands of Bob Butt to take out the feature pace of harness racing’s return weekend, beating favourite Nandolo for speed up the passing lane after sitting on him in the trail. It was Dadndave’s seventh career win and while he will now continue down the unusual winter path we have all be sent on by Covid-19, trainer and co-owner Trathen has THAT race in the back of his mind. “We’d like to think we could get him to the Cup,” says Trathen. “He is a good stayer who likes it the further the races are and he is good from a standing start. “So we might give him two or three more starts this time in, a short spell and set him down a Cup path.” Dadndave winning at Addington Trathen might only train eight horses, a number that close to doubles when he takes on other trainer’s young ones to break in or pre-train, but he knows a good horse and doesn’t aim his stable star at the Cup naively. “I know how hard it will be but you don’t often get a horse good enough to start in the Cup. “As everybody knows Dave McHugh from the Yaldy (Hotel) is in him and he would love to have a horse in the Cup and so would I. “The only sad part would be Dad not be here to enjoy it.” Trathen’s father John passed away in February, so his mother Sue has now taken over that share in Dadndave. While he was the pacing star of the night the trotting highlight came from a wildly different shaped horse in Matua Tana. The big horse with the short attention span outlasted another quality animal in Cracker Hill in the main trot but considering the three-year-old gave his conqueror a 10m start the honours were probably shared. Matua Tana has the motor to be an open class force and he suggested just that when he won at Addington last September by over seven lengths. But trainers Greg and Nina has had their troubles with him since and all the way up the Addington straight punters who took the $6 about him would have been holding their breath. He was aided by driver Gerard O’Reilly sitting quiet as a mouse in the sulky and while wouldn’t want your last dollar on him any time soon, if Matau Tana can continue to gain confidence he could join Dadndave in a mid-November group one of a different gait.   Michael Guerin

Brett Gray,Harness racing

Gray team hit with tricky draws

By Jonny Turner, NZ Harness News Desk    Trainer Brett Gray’s team look ready to make an impact on Southland’s harness racing return at Ascot Park on Saturday, if they can overcome a run of tricky draws. New Zealand’s racing landscape and the wider world may never be the same since the Covid19 pandemic hit, but for Gray some things have stayed same. When several of the Ryal Bush trainer’s horses drew awkward spots on the inside and the outside of the second row it was hardly a surprise. “It is the story of my life, really” Gray quipped. On a more serious note, Gray said he was just happy his team could resume racing again. “It’s great to be back going again, I am really looking forward to it.” Honour Before Glory is one of several horses across the country that have emerged looking refreshed and revitalised from the national lockdown. The 4yr-old looked ready to put a patchy run of form behind her when winning nicely at last week’s Ascot Park trials. “She has just taken a wee bit to come around, but I think the lockdown has done her good,” Gray said.  “If she goes like she does at the trials the other day she would be a great chance.” In The Groove will be the first of Gray’s horses to step out on Saturday when he resumes in race 3. The 3yr-old will be out to turn the tables on race rival, Madrik, who had his measure when the pair filled the quinella at last week’s trials. “He is a pretty nice horse Madrik, so it was no disgrace running second to him.” “My fella did need that run and he has improved from it.” “But, we might be running for second behind Madrik.” Gray has a two pronged attack on Saturday’s feature trot, race 10, with Richard The Third and Full Noise. Neither horse has trialled publicly ahead of their resumption, which is of no concern to the trainer. “It’s not a worry at all really, we have taken them in to the track for runs and some of them have been better than having a trial, really,” Gray said. Richard The Third will start from the front line in the 2200m event, 25m in front of his stablemate. “Richard The Third has been coming up really nice and so has Full Noise.” “But, for Full Noise a 25m handicap over 2200m can be very tough.” Rydgemont Son looks the horse to beat in race 10 following his impressive trial win at Oamaru, last weekend. Stratofortress and Hazer’s starting spots for race 7 sum up Gray’s run with draws at Ascot Park on Saturday. Stratofartress starts from barrier one on the second row, with Hazer on the extreme outside in barrier 14. American Eyretime also starts from barrier 1 on the second line in race 8. “There are some nice maidens in that race, but if she were to get a suck along in the trail or three back she would be a chance,” Gray said. “She is a not the worst in there, the draw could work out good or really bad.” Nota Bene Denario completes Gray’s day in race 11. The 5yr-old has been brilliantly consistent this season and looks set to continue that. Like so many of his runners, Gray has concerns about where the horse, who is best driven for one late run, may settle from barrier 7. “He always goes an honest race, but he is drawn a little bit wide, he usually likes to be on the rails.” Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

MILTON, May 29, 2020 - Hall of Fame trainer Bob McIntosh came ready to play for Friday's qualifying session at Woodbine Mohawk Park, sending out four impressive harness racing winners. The McIntosh quartet was headlined by the four-year-old season debut from star Sunny Dee. The O'Brien Award winner clashed with her rival and Ontario Sires Stakes champion Bodicea in the tenth-qualifier of the session. Boadicea and driver Doug McNair shot out to grab early control, posting fractions of :27.4, :56.3 and 1:25.3. Sunny Dee and driver Trevor Henry stalked their rival from the two-hole throughout, which set up a stretch showdown. Sunny Dee angled out with an eighth of a mile to go and would reach up in the final stride for a photo finish, prevailing by a small nose in 1:53. Sunny Dee's final-quarter was charted in :27, while Boadicea was home in :27.2 for a solid performance in her season debut. A daughter of Sunshine Beach, Sunny Dee's award-winning three-year-old campaign saw her post 13 wins, 21 top-three finishes and $601,617 earned in 23 starts. She capped off her season with strong performances in Grand Circuit contests, including a victory in the USS Indianapolis Memorial and a runner-up finish in the Matron. Sunny Dee is owned by Robert McIntosh Stables Inc, C S X Stables and Al McIntosh Holdings. Boadicea heads into her four-year-old season off a tremendous 2019. The Bill Budd trainee won eight of 14 starts and earned $417,652. She posted several sub-1:50 miles, holding a mark of 1:49 for owners C E Lawrence Stable Inc and G A Lawrence Stable Inc. Sunny Dee's victory capped off four consecutive wins for McIntosh on the morning, as a trio of his three-year-old pacing fillies also impressed. Bettors Delight filly Sex Appeal took the morning's seventh-qualifier in 1:55.3, shooting to the front for driver Henry and pacing home in :27.4. She won two of nine starts as a rookie with both wins coming in preliminary legs of the Ontario Sired Harvest Series. The next qualifiers saw So Delightful and Henry take the same route to victory. The daughter of Bettors Delight fronted the field to a 1:53.4 score, pacing her final-quarter in :27.4. She won two of 10 as a rookie and was the runner-up in the OSS Grassroots Championship. McIntosh's third sophomore to taste victory could be poised for a big season in Grand Circuit action. Somebeachsomewhere filly Perfect Storm did the heavy-lifting to post a 1:53.3 victory with Henry in the sulky. She capped off her mile in :27.4 to just miss her career-best by a fifth of a second. Perfect Storm posted two wins and five top-three finishes in eight starts as a rookie. Her best performance at two was a runner-up finish in the Matron Stakes, which was her first taste of stakes action. Here is a breakdown of the other winners on Friday morning. Q1: Southwind Maritime (1:58)...this Jim Ritchie trained three-year-old filly, who was one for five as a rookie, got to the lead early from an outside starting spot and never looked back. The daughter of Sportswriter and driver Doug McNair ramped up the tempo in the back-half, posting splits of :28.4 and :27.4 to win easily. Q2: Highland Salsa (1:56.4)...saw a big lead shrink late, but just held on for a narrow victory with driver Sylvain Filion. The Amanda Fine trainee opened up a big lead on the far turn with a :28.1 third-quarter, before pacing home in :29.3 to win. The daughter of Sportswriter just held off Marcel Barrieau trainee Preeminence and Ritchie trainee Zephyr Seelster. Q3: Watchful Eye (1:56.1)...shot up the inside in the final-eighth to power by leader Temagami Seelster for a well-calculated score. The Tony Alagna trained daughter of Hes Watching followed from second throughout, before pacing home in :28.1 with McNair for the win. She was winless in eight starts at two. Q4: Queso Relleno (1:57)...called all the shots for a confident looking win. The Blake MacIntosh trainee and driver Jody Jamieson paced home in :27.4 for the win. A daughter of Betterthancheddar, Queso Relleno capped off her rookie season (4 for 9) with a victory in the OSS Grassroots Final. Q5: Martinis Place (1:58.1)...circled to the top for driver McNair after the opening-quarter and never looked back. The Scott McEneny trainee paced her final-quarter in :28.4. The daughter of Betterthancheddar was one for nine as a rookie. Q6: Dreamadreamforme (1:56.4)...paced out strong to the lead and never surrendered the top spot for driver Jamieson and trainer Jack Darling. Daughter of Betterthancheddar, who was two for seven last season, paced home in :28.1. Q11: Swifty Ally (1:53.2)...shot by rivals in the stretch after a trip in fifth for a victory in her season debut. The Greg McNair trained four-year-old mare was guided by Doug McNair and capped off her mile with a :27.2 kicker. Swift Ally won nine of 16 last season, including multiple OSS Grassroots events. Qualifiers are set to resume on Monday morning at Woodbine Mohawk Park. A total of 11-races will be contested with three-year-old trotting fillies primarily in the spotlight. Post time is 9:30 a.m. To watch all the qualifiers click on this link. For full results of todays qualifiers click here. Entries due Monday for Mohawk Park qualifiers MILTON, May 29, 2020 – Woodbine Mohawk Park’s Race Office would like to remind all horsepeople that the entry box for qualifiers on Thursday, June 4 and Friday, June 5 will close on Monday (June 1) at 10:30 a.m. Preference will be given to Ontario sired three-year-olds and horses needing a charted line for eligibility to race. Mark McKelvie    

Trois-Rivieres, QC - Harness racing horse people and fans will be able to have live harness racing at the Hippodrome 3R this season and a date will soon be announced according to the Quebec Jockey Club. Talks are nearly completed between the Government of Quebec, the RACJ (Liquor Control, Racing and Gaming) and H3R on approvals of all Covid-19 protocols to allow the racetrack to reopen with 'fanless" racing. "We can now say that our approaches with the Quebec government have been successful," Explained Claude Levesque, Chairman of the Board of the Quebec Jockey Club. "We now have the ear of the decision makers and they know our concerns in re-opening the racetrack is imminent," Levesque added. "We need everyone to please remain attentive. The good news is coming very soon." Murielle Thomassin, Director of Racing at H3R stated the following message, "Everyone should know that when we have the OK, it will take about two weeks before the start of the racing season. It is a requirement of the CMPA (Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency) that they have to make sure that their employees are safe, that the sanitary measures are well implemented, that everything is finally in place. For our part, there will obviously also be stages to be crossed such as making the racetrack available to horse people for training, then a calendar for qualifying races. Then the season can start. "When we get the green light," Thomassin added, "in addition to putting all the sanitary measures in place, we will have to review the calendar among other things and make sure that we will properly adapt our schedule for the race season." The Quebec Jockey Club wanted to remind everyone that its primary mission is the racing Standardbred horses. If other activities, as was always the case, can be held without disturbing the race calendar, without altering our image of the racetrack, without breaking our infrastructure, then these activities can be held, and only under these conditions. Track management has been working with outside professionals in finding other uses for the facility on non-race days. Levesque added: "Let people be reassured. The Quebec Jockey Club's mission is always to race at H3R and this objective remains clear to all members. It is our brand image and we want to keep it." From the Quebec Jockey Club    

East Rutherford, NJ - Over the past few days there have been conflicting messages on just what the protocols will be for Saturday's harness racing qualifiers and beyond at The Meadowlands. The situation has been fluid and things have evolved. These are the current details.   Testing for the COVID-19 is currently not mandatory but is strongly recommended by the Governor and the CDC.   Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is required, face covering mandatory at all times when in the paddock area, gloves are recommended when touching common equipment and maintain the accepted social distance of six feet. The number of people in the paddock and contact with others must be kept to the absolute minimum.   Qualifiers will be held on Saturday, May 30 the time TBA after the draw. The box for those will close at 10:00AM on Friday, May 28.   Horses may be warmed up one trip only. The caretakers must not gather in a group trackside when waiting for their horses to come off the track or at any other time. This is very important.   The state requirement to practice social distancing will reduce the capacity available for stabling thus restricting the number of entries we are able to accept.   If you are stabled in New Jersey and have the opportunity to qualify at a training center please do so at the request of The Meadowlands and the SBOA of NJ to allow others that do not have that option to get their horses qualified at The Meadowlands.   If preference becomes necessary, as will likely be the case, first preference will be horses that are eligible to stakes at The Meadowlands, Tioga & Vernon Downs followed by those trainers who have consistently raced at The Meadowlands.   The qualifying overnight sheet will designate where each horse will be stabled until they race either from the paddock or another designated area. Please do not bring horses other than those who are in to qualify as there will be no training permitted on May 30.   The current plan has the track open to accommodate training on Thursday, June 4.   All horse people and track employees will be required to download and submit a completed questionnaire and consent to having their temperature checked with a no touch thermometer before entering the paddock gate.   VERY IMPORTANT This questionnaire must be printed out and completed so we have a hard copy. Having it on your phone or other device is not acceptable.   Please try to have this completed and ready to hand over to the guards when you arrive to avoid slowing entry through the gate.   If deemed a health risk you will be turned away. It is advised that everyone's temperature is checked to be within the normal range before you ship in to the track to avoid being refused entry. Pertinent information on protocols the state will require from horse persons to participate will be made available on the track website. Trainers are asked to have themselves and their employees familiar with those requirements and come prepared to follow the protocol as it is stated.   Only those essential to racing the horses will be granted admittance to the paddock. No others, including owners, will be admitted into the paddock or grandstand to watch the qualifiers or the live races when they begin.   The qualifiers will be available via streaming at The Meadowlands website on Saturday.   Catch-Drivers must remain outside the paddock, isolated in their vehicles and will pick up their mount as the horses exit the paddock on the way to the track then return to their car after the race. Trainers driving horses from their stable may participate in the preparation of and drive only their own horses. The locker room will be unavailable.   We ask that you explicitly follow the directions of those officials maintaining the protocol while in the paddock and on the grounds.

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Harness racing is getting back underway in more jurisdictions every week after a complete shutdown two months ago at tracks across North America due to the coronavirus (COVID-19 strain) pandemic. New Brunswick has announced its first card of the season will be June 6 at Exhibition Park Raceway in Saint John, while Nova Scotia indicated this week that racing will return to its three tracks in June with final details being ironed out. In the U.S., Illinois received the green light to go, and New Jersey will hold qualifiers this week while awaiting confirmation on when live racing may resume. While live racing is back, there is not a single jurisdiction allowing fans back at the track for at least the time being. The first qualifiers of the season were held Saturday afternoon at Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park with more than 60 horses entered in nine dashes in front of an empty grandstand. Race fans caught the action live at from the comfort of their own homes. More qualifiers were scheduled for Thursday evening at the capital oval followed by afternoon cards Saturday and Sunday at 12:30 p.m. leading up to the first card of live racing on Thursday, June 4. Mixed into the qualifying crowd are some new names to East Coast racing. Vegas Rich (24 wins, $121,499 earned, mark of 1:53.1 at Kawartha Downs) qualified Saturday for trainer Jansen Sweet and owner Frank Sweet of Knutsford. The Million Dollar Cam nine-year-old had been racing the $7,000 claiming ranks at Rideau Carleton Raceway outside Ottawa. Much Adoo (26 wins, $401,347, 1:49.4 at Mohawk) is now part of the Ron Matheson stable and is owned by Bruce Wood’s Rollwithitharry Racing of Marshfield. The Classic Card Shark eight-year-old pacing mare was claimed for $7,500 from Dover Downs in Delaware. Miss Kabana (nine wins, $59,181, 1:54 at Mohawk) is now owned by Gary Poulton, Gail MacDonald and Trevor Warren of Charlottetown. A five-year-old daughter of Mach Three, Miss Kabana has been racing the $15,000 claimer at Woodbine Mohawk Park in Ontario, pacing in 1:55.4 in her latest start in March. There have also been some additions to the top pacing ranks on the East Coast with more sure to come. Lisburn, a finalist in 2019 in The Guardian Gold Cup and Saucer, is back on the East Coast in the Kenny Arsenault stable for owner Kevin Harvey of Hammonds Plains, N.S. The five-year-old pacer was a force in the preferred ranks in the fall before moving back to Ontario for the winter meet at Mohawk. Avatar J, a third-place finisher in last year’s James (Roach) MacGregor Gold Cup and Saucer consolation, has been placed in the Danny MacDonald stable of Charlottetown by owners Jody Sanderson of Cornwall and Dean Larkin of Edwards, Ont. The six-year-old American Ideal pacer was racing the Ontario circuit for trainer Ron MacDonald and was a winner in 1:52.2 in March at Mohawk. Nicholas Oakes' column appears in The Guardian each Friday. He can be reached at Reprinted with permission of The Journal Pioneer  

May 26, 2020 - Fleche Bourbon (5f Saxo de Vandel-Uzara Josselyn) won today’s Prix Victor Cavey (Gr. II harness racing monte, purse 85,000€, 2950 meters, five-year olds) held at La Mans in France.  Race time was 1.13.8kr and Alexandre Abrivard was the jockey for trainer Sebastien Guarato and owner Ecurie du Haras des Saint Martin.  The winner, off as the 6/10 odds favorite and racing barefoot, recorded her 14th career victory now for 587,300€ earned and this was her second straight monte victory.  25/1 Fille Vauloger (5g Vaillant Cash-Onda Vauloger) was a fast closing second for Adrien Lamy, ahead of third finishing 59/1 Fable du Plessis (5f Neutron du Cebe) with P.Ph.  Ploquin in the irons. Fleche Bourbon The top weekend action in FR begins Friday at Laval that hosts the Prix Lavater (Gr. II monte, 85,000€ purse, 2875 meters, four-year olds) and the Prix Pythia (purse 56,000€, 2850 meters, European eligibles). Thomas H. Hicks  

Penny A Packet was in fine fettle in taking out the M & M Office National Tamworth Pace on Thursday afternoon at the Tamworth harness racing meeting. And for hobby trainer Russell Murray he was both happy and relieved to see the seven-year-old mare back to her best form in having a half neck win over Cronin (Maddison Simon) and Just Tommy (Sam Ison), who was 1.4 metres away third. "It is over two years since she had a win, that's a long time" Murray, who trains for his wife Rachael, stated with a confident grin. "She strained a tendon so she had twelve months off," he added. Penny A Packet picked up her last win back in June 2017 at the Tamworth Paceway and with only the one horse in his stables Murray has nursed his pride and joy back to the winner's circle. "It is something to get me out of bed of a morning - I will be 74 in November and I started in harness racing back in 1964," he reflected. "Sometimes it is a long time between wins but you just have to keep battling on." Since her third placing at Tamworth back on May 17, Penny A Packet has been displaying some good track work on her home track at the Tamworth Paceway. "She had every chance last start - they were just too good on the day but she has improved out of sight, she showed me that in her track work through the week," added Murray. "I wasn't that confident today because of the draw but everything turned out really good so I am really pleased." "She is starting to get back into gear but twelve months off is a long time. She is very consistent and she will keep that up if she can just have a little bit of luck in her races." From the seven barrier Penny A Packet was placed back on the inside running line while Commanche (Scotty-Jon Welsh) and Just Tommy (Sam Ison) headed the field into the final lap of the 1980 metre race. "I thought she would be stuck on the fence but Blake (reinsman Blake Hughes) managed to get her out at the 400 and she sprinted really well," Murray said.  All smiles: A very happy trainer Russell Murray with reinsman Blake Hughes. Photo: Julie Maughan   The inform reinsman was happy with the mares' racing performance. "She was pretty good and had a good run through and finished the race off well," said Hughes, who had to switch Penny A Packet five wide around the final turn for a sprint home to grab the race on the line. "I was three back on the pegs and got out on the turn. She is a pretty good horse to drive and she is going good." "She let down pretty good so I felt confident on the line - she did it easy." After commencing his winning streak at the meeting with Penny A Packet, Hughes went on to produce three winners for the meeting with I'm So Better for the Tony Missen stables taking out the Multiquip Transport Pace and Max Power the Furney's Stock Feeds Tamworth Pace for trainer Clayton Harmey. Julie Maughan Reprinted with permission of The Northern Daily Leader

Daily Star Chief Photographer Julie Lewis is the winner of two awards in the 2019 New York Associated Press Association Better Newspapers Contest. Competing in Division 1, among New York newspapers with weekly circulation of up to 75,000 papers, Lewis won first place in the Sports Photo category for "Sweet Chariot," a photo of harness racing taken on July 30, 2019 during the New York Sire Stakes at the Otsego County Fair in Morris. Lewis also won second place in the spot news category for an April 2019 photo of murder suspect Gabriel Truitt being captured by police in Oneonta. “The intensity of the harness racing was perfectly captured in the first-place sports photo,” Daily Star Editor Denielle Cazzolla said. “And it was Julie’s news-hound ear, as well as her eye for a well-composed photo that helped earn her the award for her photo of Gabriel Truitt’s arrest.” It was Lewis who heard police chatter on the scanner of a perimeter being set up downtown. She grabbed her camera an went to the scene, capturing the arrest. After confirming with Oneonta Police that it was Truitt, she called in the information to the newsroom, which posted the news on The Daily Star’s website and social media channels, breaking the news of the arrest of the man who was wanted in the arson death of former Oneonta firefighter John Heller several months earlier. First place finisher Flow With Joe, driven by Jody Weidman of New Berlin, is ahead of Steuben Savage, driven by Dustin Miller, as they round a turn during the sixth race of the New York Sire Stakes on Tuesday at the Otsego County Fair in Morris Julie Lewis | The Daily Star Photo “We are so happy for Julie to receive these well-deserved awards,” Cazzolla said. The first place sports photo may be seen online at The second place spot news photo may be seen at By Robert Cairns Reprinted with permission of The Daily Star

With the start of the harness racing season delayed indefinitely due to the Covid-19 pandemic, supporters and participants of the sport have turned their attention instead to raising money to support NHS Charities via a series of fantasy harness races. Back in April, Northern Harness Racing co-founder Julie Park launched the concept of a virtual 'race night' using old footage of harness races from across the UK. The initial plan was to stage 8 races with 10 horses in each race, with those wishing to take part purchasing a horse for £10 each and choosing a name for their horse, the theme being names associated with the current situation. Businesses and individuals were also invited to sponsor each of the 8 races for £50 to generate additional funds. The aim of the fundraiser was to raise £1200 for the NHS Charities, however it became apparent very quickly that this target was going to be surpassed as owners, trainers, drivers, grooms and avid followers of the sport jumped on the bandwagon. Before long the list of race sponsors had reached 18, made up of businesses, individuals and organisations associated with the sport of harness racing and the total number of horses sold was 138. Once the footage had been collated for the races, renowned Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing commentator and British Harness Racing Club Chairman, Darren Owen, recorded fresh commentary using the names submitted by those who had purchased horses. On Saturday 2nd May the fantasy racing series was launched via the Northern Harness Racing Facebook page and the British Harness Racing Club YouTube channel (, with two races per night being released for viewing. The series culminated on Saturday 9th May with the two 'finals' (horses who had finished in the first two in earlier races in the week 'raced' again on Finals Night) and the Champion of Champions Pace, which featured the top 10 UK and Irish Standardbred racehorses of all time as voted for by the general public - with the finishing order reflecting the number of votes each horse received during the nomination and voting process. Julie Park explained the inspiration behind the idea: "I came up with the idea as lots of people were posting old harness racing videos on Facebook and it was clear everybody was missing live racing. I was blown away by the bravery of the NHS staff who were continuing to work as I had only spent a short time in school without PPE or procedures before the schools were closed and it was a scary time. The final straw that pushed me to do something to raise money was that a friend of mine who I know through volunteering at Appleby Harness Races, her daughter who is also an ex-student of mine, was already working in a northern hospital and volunteered to work with coronavirus victims in the Nightingale Hospital in London. I just felt I had to do something." In addition to the 17 races, a fantasy trainer's table was created, won by Teresa Haythornthwaite, and a fantasy tipster competition ran concurrently to the series with the prize of a £50 bet from Avalon Bookmakers awarded to the winning tipster, Jessica Dyer (a young harness racing driver from Cardiff) for use when the racing season can begin again. In total, just under £2500 was raised and donated to the NHS Charities Together. Everyone involved in harness racing would like to thank all NHS staff and key workers for their dedication and bravery during these difficult times. All BHRC NHS Fundraiser fantasy races can be viewed on the British Harness Racing Club YouTube channel. by Sarah Thomas, for Harnesslink

Breeding authority Peter Wharton presents all the harness racing news on breeding from Australia, New Zealand and North America every Friday brought to you by Garrard’s Horse & Hound. Riverina Championship winner Rocky Creed, who won the $100,000 Riverina Region Championship Final at Wagga, is a Pet Rock gelding from the same family as that which produced a top Victorian youngster in Sky Strike. Rocky Creed, a four-year-old gelding, was a winner at two and posted three wins as a three-year-old last season. By American-bred Pet Rock, a Rocknroll Hanover horse, he is out of Miss Toolern Vale (1:57.2), by Bettor’s Delight from Armbro Sunshine, by Armbro Operative from the Good Humor Man mare Sunshine Blue, a half-sister to the talented Riverina juvenile Solarious. Miss Toolern Vale, who won six races in Victoria, is also the dam of recent Wagga two-year-old winner Stravinsky (1:57). She is a half-sister to a smart juvenile in Cullen’s Crown, winner of the Victoria Sapling Stakes and MIA Breeders Plate, True Happiness 1:57.1 (SA Breeders Plate) and the Melton winner Lucky Metro (1:57.4). Other ‘black type’ performers further back in this pedigree have been Banjo Miss (Vicbred 4YO Final and Queen Of The Pacific), Bellair Park, Starzzz Of Icon and Truscott Flyer and the top trotters Truscott Steel and Bad Boy Truscott.   By He’s Watching Runner-up in the Diamond Classic as a two-year-old last season, Blockjorg downed the top three-year-olds in the Diamond Classic at Gloucester Park last Friday, including a top ranking filly in Double Expresso. Blockjorg                                                    -- Jodie Hallows photo   It was Blockjorg’s fifth success for the season and she has a bankroll of $78,621. Blockjorg has not enjoyed the best of luck during her career, but has proved herself a young pacer of great ability. By He’s Watching, and one of the first crop of the American horse to race in Australia, Blockjorg is out of Toobee Three, by Legacy Of Power (son of No Nukes) from Ozzi Miss (2:02.1), by Lucky Cam from the Maple Lanes Strike mare Niugini Gold. He’s Watching, the sire of Blockjorg, has left several smart types from his first crops in Australia and NZ. They include Private Eye, winner of the George Croxford Tribute, the metropolitan winners Born To Be Watched, Raksjameson and Experia and the Breeders Crown finalist Star Hunter.   Wolf Stride is Inter Dominion material Wolf Stride, who won the $100,000 Metropolitan Region Championship Final at Menangle and is regarded as Inter Dominion material of the highest order, is a four-year-old entire by Rock N Roll Heaven from Lilac Stride, a top racemare who took a record of 1:54.4 and earned $276,140. He is a member of an old time NZ family, which was represented by the winners of this year’s WA Derby and Oaks in Patronus Star and Sports Package respectively. Lilac Stride was an Art Major mare from Labretta Franco NZ (1:58.5), a Fairfield Golden Easter Egg winner by Falcon Seelster from Looks The Part, a noted producer by Nero’s B B. Lilac Stride was a sister to the good Menangle winner Gypsy Stride (1:54.9), dam of the Newcastle Oaks winner Olive Stride, and a half-sister to Mister Cool Stride (1:57.2) and Miss Labretta, dam of Four Starz Pride (1:54.4). Wolf Stride ranks as a three-quarter brother to Cherry Stride (1:51.2), $128,370, who won nine races including the NSW Go Girlfriend Series. Both were bred by prominent Sydney identity Emilio Rosati.   Leading sire’s absence a loss Racing at the Qbred feature meeting at Albion Park further demonstrated the loss of Hurrikane Kingcole to breeders. With only a few representatives racing, he sired the quinella pair in the Breeders Classic for two-year-old fillies in Vanish Hanover and Talent To Spare; Tancaltra Lis, winner of the Breeders Classic Consolation for two-year-old fillies; Left A Hurrikane, who finished third in the Triad Consolation for three-year-old colts and geldings and Wannago, the third placegetter in the two-year-old fillies’ Breeders Classic Consolation. Fearless Faith, a winner of three races at Albion Park, Youaremy Sunshine, winner of the VHRC 3YO Classic at Melton, Venus Jujon (1:52.4), Sugarkane and Left A Hurrikane have been other recent winners from Hurrikane Kingcole’s first crops.   NSW Group 1 winner has strong bloodlines A bright future is being predicted for the Rock N Roll Heaven four-year-old Kanye Crusader, whose success in the $100,000 Hunter Region Championship Final at Newcastle was his fourth this season. Kanye Crusader, who was bred and is trained by Clayton Harmey, has a good deal in his favour on the score of blood. Apart from being by Rock N Roll Heaven, and one of his fourth crop, Kanye Crusader is out of the Fake Left mare Khloe (1:59.2), a capable racemare who was very successful broodmare leaving four winners – all inside 1:58 – from foal foals. Khloe, who won 16 races and $58,141, was out of Concise Lass (2:02.5), by Golden Fulla from Concise, by Real Light (Light Brigade-Reality-U Scott) from Meadow Stream, by Chamfer from the Medoro mare Medopark. This family has produced some useful pacers over the years. They include cup class pacers in Medowie Prince and Just Jasper, the top racemare Rocknroll Angel, Fastnfurious (1:54.7), River Wild and others.   Up and coming youngsters Two smart young horses to win at the Qbred feature meeting at Albion Park were the three-year-old Fond Memories and the two-year-old Captains Pick, both bred and raced by Kevin Seymour and both from the same maternal family. Fond Memories, who took out the $50,660 Qbred Triad Final, is a filly by Mach Three from a fine racemare in Forever After 1:56.2 ($172,808), a winner of 20 races including the Qbred Triad 4YO Final. She ranks as a half-sister to the Qbred Triad and Breeders Classic 3YO winner Guitarzan 1:56.9 ($216,956), being by Presidential Ball from the top racemare Girl From Ipanema (1:57.6), by Vanston Hanover from the Oaks winner Goldrush Girl TT1:55.3 ($151,619), by Transport Chip from Call Girl. Captains Pick, who won the Breeders Classic Consolation, is a colt by Captaintreacherous from the dual Qbred Triad winner Charming Allie 1:53.9 ($266,329) and the first of her produce to race. By Mr Feelgood, Charming Allie is a half-sister to the champion Colt Thirty One 1:51.3 ($834,246), being out of Charm Personified, by Perfect Art from the Vanston Hanover mare Charming Reminder, a half-sister to Goldrush Girl, the third dam of Fond Memories. This family traces back to the foundation mare Lady Antrim, dam of the NZ Derby winner Croughton. Other classic winners belonging to this noted family include  Good Lookin Girl, the dual Oaks winner Cherry Cheer, Rhapsody In Red, Get In The Groove and more recently,  Fame Assured and boom four-year-old Leos Best.   Arden Voyager in top form One of the most capable young pacers racing in Victoria at present is Arden Voyager, who has quickly won his way through the classes. Arden Voyager                                                   --Stuart McCormick photo Arden Voyager has a wealth of blood to back up his claims to further promotion, being by Somebeachsomewhere from a fine racemare in Arden’s Darlin 1:57.2 ($245,829), by Bettor’s Delight from Achieve A Dream (2:01.5), by In The Pocket from the Son Of Afella mare Arden’s Dream (2:00.5), and tracing to the taproot Moonbeam (by Rothschild). Arden’s Darlin, a winner of five races and the top ranking two-year-old filly of her year, is also the dam of Celestial Arden 1:51.4 ($176,466), a prolific winner at Menangle and now competing successfully in America. The third dam, Arden’s Dream, left nine winners – including five in 2:00 - and really established the Moonbeam to some purpose. She was also the dam of the NZ Sires Stakes 2YO champion Arden Banner 1:58.4 ($114,572), the cups winners Arden’s Legacy (1:56.1) and Arden Tetrick and the exported Fantastic Dream 1:53.2 ($213,285) and Arden’s Heritage (1:52.2).   Brothers win at Bendigo It was no mean feat for the full brothers Kyvalley Senator and Kyvalley Chief to win the two trotters’ races at the Bendigo club’s recent meeting.   Both are by the Muscles Yankee horse Muscle Hill (a top sire of straight out trotters). Love Ya Doosie, the dam of Kyvalley Senator and Kyvalley Chief, was out of a capable trotter in Sheezadoosie, who took a record of 2:04.2 over 2600 metres. Besides Love Ya Doosie, she was also the dam of the champion I Can Doos It Tr 1:55.5 ($1.4 million), who won 18 races on end at one stage, and the Group winner Sno’s Big Boy Tr 1:58.4 ($215,308). Sheezadoosie was out of the American-bred mare Becalm Lobell (Tr 2:06.3), the dam of a smart trotter in Golden Blend Tr 1:55 ($305,911), Dipendra (Tr 1:58.8) and the Dream Vacation mare Big O E, who, in turn, left the Breeders Crown champion Aldebaran Ay M (Tr 1:58.8) and Aldebaran Southland (Tr 2:00.1), runner-up in the NSW Trotters Derby.   Maori Time in foal Maori Time, Australasia’s fastest ever trotting mare, has returned a positive test to the Prix d’Amerique winner and European champion Readly Express. Maori Time                                                  --Stuart McCormick photo The winner of 24 races and $420,000 in stakes, Maori Time competed in the 2018 Elitloppet in Sweden and has remained in the care of the famed Menhammar Stuteri stud since she finished racing. Maori Time won 12 times at Group level including the Bill Collins Mile in three consecutive years and took her record of 1:51.5 winning the NSW Trotters Cup in 2018.   Auckland Reactor to NSW The Mach Three horse Auckland Reactor, who had previously stood stud at Alabar Bloodstock, has been relocated to Tony Peacock’s Moama property. Auckland Reactor’s oldest stock are five-year-olds and among them are some really smart types. Chase Auckland, winner of the NZ Free-for-all, Great Northern Derby and Sires Stakes Championship, is one of this number, as is Soho Burning Love, winner of the Victoria Silver Chalice and Blossom Lady, and the highly touted three-year-old Willie Go West. Chase Auckland                                                                 --Harnesslink photo Reactor Now, joint holder of the Kilmore track record and rated one of the best young sprinters in Victoria, Delightfulreaction, a multiple Group 1 placegetter in WA, the good Melton winner Shining Oro, Gold Reactor and Gobsmacked (1:52.5) have been other Australian winners by Auckland Reactor from his first crops. Auckland Reactor has sired 67 individual winners in Australia to date this season for more than $930,000 in stakes, while in New Zealand, he is currently ranked fifth on the All Aged List and third on the five-years-old and older table.  Auckland Reactor proved himself a brilliant pacer on his day, taking a mile record of 1:52.9 and winning 32 races and $1.7 million in stakes.   by Peter Wharton  

By Jonny Turner, Harness News Desk   Sioux Princess has emerged from lockdown with a Forrest Gump style attitude and she showed it off with a stylish win at Addington on Thursday. Like the character from the hit 1994 movie, the Mark Jones trained trotter simply wants to run. And fast. Sioux Princess came in to Thursday’s rating 40-51 event after running her rivals ragged to score at last week’s Addington trials. The 5yr-old then put in an almost identical performance to win when racing resumed at Addington on Thursday. Jones said he puts Sioux Princess’s new attitude down to her recharging during lockdown. “She has had quite a bit of hard racing, so I just think the freshen up has probably done her good.” Before her trial and race wins, strong front-running performances were never a strong point for Sioux Princess. “It is funny because in a race down south one day she got to the front and then stopped to a walk,” Jones said. There was no walking for Sioux Princess in Thursday’s 2600m event. Once driver Samantha Ottley took the mare to the front with just under two laps to go her rivals never got a look in. Sioux Princess should be a regular at Addington through the winter. Jones plans to race the mare week to week now that harness racing is back up and running. The trainer’s stable star, Stylish Memphis, is set to rejoin his Burnham barn in the coming weeks. The New South Wales Oaks winning 3yr-old is currently jogging with owner, Wayne Higgs. Stylish Memphis was to campaign in Queensland during the winter, but her trip was cancelled after changes were made to the races she was to contest. Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

MILTON, May 28, 2020 - The first of several upcoming qualifying session at Woodbine Mohawk Park took place Thursday, as a total of 11-races were contested. All of Thursday's action saw male pacers primarily in the spotlight with trainer Blake MacIntosh's students grabbing most of the glory. MacIntosh sent out four sophomore winners during the session, with two of his winners eligible to the Pepsi North America Cup eligible. On the heels of a standout rookie campaign, Groovy Joe delivered a strong 2020 debut with a 1:53 victory in the seventh-qualifiers for the duo of MacIntosh and driver James MacDonald. The son of Roll With Joe circled to the lead heading to the half and proceeded to finish off his mile with a :26.2 final-quarter (:54.4 back-half) to win. Groovy Joe had a tremendous rookie season, racing primarily in the New York Sires Stakes program. The MacIntosh student won seven of 10 starts and never finished outside the top-two. His final start of the season was a runner-up finish in the NYSS Championship to complete his campaign with $230,845 earned. He is eligible to the Pepsi North America Cup. The other 'Cup' eligible of MacIntosh's to win was Beach Blanket Book, who successfully converted off a two-hole trip from driver Doug McNair to win in 1:52.3. The son of Sportswriter was charted with a :26 final-quarter. Beach Blanklet Book won two of 12 starts as a rookie, including a leg of the Ontario Sires Stakes Gold division. He also won an elimination of the Battle of Waterloo and competed in the final of the $750,000 Metro Pace, earning $116,028 on the season. MacIntosh's quickest win of the morning came from three-year-old colt A Positive Hanover, who stopped the clock in 1:51.4. The son of Captaintreacherous and reinsman MacDonald were coast-to-coast winners, posting a :54.3 back-half and :27.1 final-quarter. A Positive Hanover went two for eight last season, testing the Grand Circuit waters at the end of the year, which included finishing third in a division of the Bluegrass at The Red Mile. He made $25,334. Not to be left out, Bettors Delight colt Sixfingerfreddie won the first qualifier of the day for McNair and MacIntosh. The sophomore colt won convincingly by over seven-lengths in 1:56.2 (final-quarter :27.3). The season debut is a strong start following a winless rookie campaign, in which he earned $16,714 in 11 starts. Here is a breakdown of the other winners on Thursday morning. Q2: Day Delight (1:55)...three-year-old son of Bettors Delight was a coast-to-coast winner for driver Trevor Henry and trainer Victor Puddy, just holding off a late-push by Rob Fellows trainee Lous Delight. Q3: Unique Beach (1:55.4)...three-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere brushed to the lead in the second-quarter and left his rivals behind to win confidently for driver Chris Christoforou and trainer Tony O'Sullivan. Q4: Better Take It (1:54.4)...the best finish of the morning saw Bob McIntosh trained three-year-old Better Take move to the outside from sixth at the half, grind up on the far turn and dig in down the lane for driver Henry to muscle by multiple rivals. Matt Dupuis trainee Poseidon Seelster just missed pulling off the wire-to-wire score, finishing second by a neck. The top-five were separated by just under two-lengths. Q5: Captivate Hanover (1:54.3)...the Shawn Steacy trained three-year-old posted a strong :26.3 final-quarter to come from third at the head of the lane for a narrow victory over McIntosh trainee Sundown Kid. MacDonald guided the winner. Q9: Beaumond Hanover (1:54.1)...last year's Harvest Series winner delivered a strong three-year-old debut by going coast-to-coast on top for a two-length score over OSS Gold winner Aneto. Jack Darling trains Beaumond Hanover, who was four for five as a rookie. He delivered an easy-looking :26.2 final-quarter for driver Jody Jamieson. Q10: Muscle Mach A (1:51.4)...the new Carmen Auciello student and driver Jonathan Drury posted a 10-length score in his North America debut. The seven-year-old gelding last raced in mid-February in Australia. Q11: Uptown Funk (1:52.4)...another Auciello trainee to post a 10-length score. The five-year-old gelding and Drury took off on rivals early, opening up a 20-length lead and pacing :26.4 third-quarter before coming home in :30. Qualifiers continue Friday morning at Woodbine Mohawk Park with three-year-old pacing fillies and older pacing mares in taking over. Post time is 9:30 a.m. The qualifiers can be streamed live on Mark McKelvie          

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East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands will host 26 qualifying races on Saturday morning at 10:00AM. The program pages will be available for download when they are complete. There will be warm up breaks after races 5 - 10 - 15 & 20. Harness racing horses are permitted one warm up each.   The paddock gate will open at 7:00AM for horsemen to enter. Only those persons that are essential to the care and racing of the horses will be allowed entry. The grandstand will be closed. There will be no spectators permitted in any part of the facility.   A COVID-19 questionnaire must be completed and turned in as you pass through the gate. Those questionnaires in a web fillable format are available for download on the website.   These forms must be presented as hard copy, printed out and handed to the guard when you pass through the gate. Having it on your phone or any device is not acceptable.   Each person entering the property must have their individual forms completed and signed. It will expedite the process if you can have them completed when you arrive.   Each person must submit to a no touch temperature check before entering. Anyone who does not complete a form or whose temperature is over 100.4f will not be admitted.   All stalls are being assigned by state reps to try and execute proper social distance. Those stall assignments will be posted when they are complete. This could be much later so they will also be handed out at the gate. Trainers with multiple horse will be stabled in one area rather than the normal separation by races as much as possible.   Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is required, face covering mandatory at all times when in the paddock area, gloves are recommended when touching common equipment and maintain the accepted social distance of six feet. The number of people in the paddock and contact with others must be kept to the absolute minimum.   The caretakers must not gather in a group trackside when waiting for their horses to come off the track or at any other time. This is very important.          
HAMBURG, N.Y. --- After getting clearance from the New York State Gaming Commission, Buffalo Raceway will resume live harness racing on Wednesday evening (June 3) with post time set for 6 p.m. Wednesday racing, which usually has a 5 p.m. start, was shifted to 6 p.m. for the remainder of the schedule.   The half-mile oval, located at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg, will have racing on Wednesday and Saturday nights at 6 p.m. until the conclusion of the campaign on Saturday, July 18.   The first night of racing on Wednesday will have a $5,000 guarantee in the Pick 5 which begins in the second race.   The draw for Wednesday's card will be on Monday (June 1) with the box closing at 9 a.m. The draws will then be on Wednesday for Saturday cards and on Saturday for the Wednesday programs. Condition sheets for the week can be found under the horsemen's tab at   The public or individual horsemen shall not be allowed in the grandstand, clubhouse, apron or general seating areas. There will be no viewing of races from any vehicle or in any building or parking lot on the facility grounds.   Wagering on Buffalo Raceway will be available at various Advance Deposit Wagering (ADW) and simulcast outlets throughout North America.   "We look forward to get back to racing," said Buffalo Raceway Director of Operations Jon Cramer said. "Everyone is anxious to get started again. We want to give everyone an opportunity to race and stay safe."   There is a pre-approved list for people entering the backstretch and paddock area and all will have their temperature checked as well. People should give themselves plenty of time in arriving to the track.   A health screening assessment including temperature check shall be performed on all horse people, track employees and commission employees off McKinley Parkway before entering the stable area.   Each and every participant will be asked if he or she has been sick (i.e. fever above 100.0, cough, fatigue) for the last 14 days. If there is a yes or a participant's temperature is above 100.0, they will not be admitted and will be required to leave the Buffalo Raceway premises. In order to return, written medical clearance must be presented.   Masks must be worn at all times and hand sanitizers will be placed throughout the backside. Trainers must provide masks and gloves for their employees. The track will have people helping the horsemen, enforcing policies and sanitizing areas.   Guests, visitors, owners, children or any individuals not directly associated with conducting live racing will not be admitted to the stable area or paddock at Buffalo Raceway on any day.   Note on the post time schedule, there will be more time allocated between races four and five and races eight and nine. This will provide sufficient time for the horses to enter the paddock and warm up for the next set of four races and to reasonably sanitize 'high touch' areas.   Buffalo Raceway will conform to all governmental policies and guidelines for personal protection efforts.   There is also a ship-in limitation of 75 miles and no horses from Canada or out of state will be allowed.   Buffalo Raceway has also relinquished their New York Sire Stakes dates for the 2020 season.   "We need and anticipate everyone's cooperation," Cramer said of the guidelines set down by New York State and Buffalo Raceway.   For complete information including all the policies and procedures, go to   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway  
East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands is pleased to announce that Governor Murphy has granted harness racing the opportunity to resume in the state of New Jersey. Our thanks go out to the Governor for allowing all of us to get back to business.   Live racing will return to The Meadowlands next weekend Friday, June 5 and Saturday, June 6 at 7:15 PM with no live attendance. We ask that our fans and those involved with the horses as owners and in any capacity other than those essential to the function of racing be patient as we are hopeful that with careful management and Jersey remaining healthy we will be able to open the grandstand before too long.   Qualifiers will be held on Saturday morning. Pertinent information was released earlier today on important practices and protocols for racing. Further details including the draw for Saturday's qualifying races will be released as they become know later today.   With the green light to race we may now release the live racing calendar for the balance of 2020 which may be found on The Meadowlands website later this afternoon.   Also posted will be the revised stakes schedule which will remain virtually in tact. The stakes will begin with the New Jersey Sires Stakes (NJSS) for 3-year-olds on and the first leg of the Miss Versatility on Friday, June 19. The calendar may still be fluid as changes are made at other tracks regarding their intentions but any move would likely be only from Friday to Saturday.   While we are all pleased and grateful to be back racing, we must remain vigilant so far as following the protocols required of us all as long as they are in place.   Good luck and good racing to everyone.   Nick Salvi
HARRINGTON, Del. - The first qualifying races of the harness racing season at Harrington Raceway will take place June 9 and 10 with a new qualifying time of 9 a.m. In order to be in compliance with COVID-19 related state guidelines, a maximum of nine races will be carded. The June 10 qualifiers will be restricted to Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) eligible 3-year-olds. If space allows for the June 10 qualifying draw, overnight horses may be permitted to qualify. There will be a double draw for both qualifying days on June 8 with the entry box closing at noon. The Delaware Harness Racing Commission has waived the 60-day qualifying rule due to the lapse in racing from the mandated COVID-19 related closures. Any horse who has a clean charted line since February 1 will not need to qualify. Due to spacing restrictions, only horses that need to qualify may be permitted and will have preference. Also in light of spacing/capacity restrictions, horses trained by individuals who have not raced at Harrington Raceway in 2019 may not be permitted to qualify and/or race. Paddock protocol for all horsemen, including a temperature checkpoint upon entry is required. Horsemen are strongly urged to view the protocol in advance here. All horsemen are required to read, sign and abide by the protocol or risk losing racing privileges. Live racing will commence on June 15 without spectators on a Monday through Wednesday schedule until July 15. An updated racing calendar can be found here. There will be no racing on July 30 during the Delaware State Fair. The summer/fall schedule will resume August 17. Post time nightly is 4:30 p.m. Matt Sparacino

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