Day At The Track

It appears Lazarus can not only walk the walk but talk the talk. The Kiwi pacing hero faces one of the toughest challenges of his North American career when he starts from a daunting wide draw in the US$250,000 Dan Rooney Pace (one mile) at Yonkers, New York tomorrow morning (10am NZ time). On the tight Yonkers track Lazarus needs to get handy or more ideally lead inside the first 600m to give himself the best chance of a revenge victory over arch rival McWicked, who beat him in the second fastest race mile in history in Kentucky last week.  As was the case when he was trained in New Zealand, Lazarus has thrived on hard racing and is showing no signs of lightening off in condition, looking muscled and with a stunning summer sheen on his coat at trainer Jimmy Takter’s New Jersey property this week. “I think the hard racing has really brought him on,” says Takter. “He felt very good in his work on Wednesday and he will be hard to beat this Saturday even though he has a tough draw.” But Lazarus’s work on Takter’s straight sand track track on Wednesday wasn’t the only reason the Hall Of Fame trainer was smiling afterward. He was shaking his head in amazement at a story from Kentucky last Saturday relayed to him by fellow top trainer Ross Croghan. Croghan is the trainer of Lazarus’s former stablemate Heaven Rocks and the pair raced each other for the first time in the United States last Saturday. “Ross told me the most amazing story,” says Takter. “He said when Lazarus walked into the barn last week he stopped dead in his tracks when he saw Heaven Rocks, who apparently he used to travel with Down Under, and started yelling out to him. “It wasn’t a stallion thing because the other horse is a gelding but Lazarus started yelling at Heaven Rocks like he was an old friend and Heaven Rocks starts calling back to him. “It was like too old friends seeing each other and Ross said it was incredible to see and there was no doubt they were happy to see each other. “When I heard that story it made the hairs on my arms stand up. I know this horse is smart but they really are incredible animals.” Coming from a small-time trainer who spends all his time with the one horse that might sounds cooky, hearing it was Takter and Croghan is a magical equine moment. But Takter isn’t finished. “I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised because one of the first things I loved about this horse was he is always talking to the other horses. “When you are out there working him he is making noises at them, again not as a stallion but just cause he likes his job. The top horses always have charisma, he has a lot of it.” It is the same at Takter’s stables where Lazarus has become protective of the juvenile trotting filly he is stabled next too, not in an amorous way but as the big brother. “Any time we do anything with her he comes over to make sure she is all right and he gets really annoyed when we take her away. He misses her,” said Lazarus’s main handler Helen Engblom. It seems regardless of what happens at Yonkers tomorrow Lazarus is making a big impression in North America, on and off the track. Michael Guerin

WASHINGTON, PA, Oct. 11, 2018 -- Delcrest Magicstar let Expose Yourself do the heavy lifting, then blew by her in the Lightning Lane to pull off the 12-1 upset in Thursday's $18,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Trot at The Meadows. A recent acquisition by Tom Pollack, Reed Broadway and Randy Bendis, who also trains, Delcrest Magicstar stretched out Expose Yourself on the "good" surface before yielding to the pocket. She poured through the Lightning Lane for Aaron Merriman to defeat Expose Yourself by 1-1/4 lengths while Glidinthruparadise also shot the Lightning Lane for show. The 4-year-old daughter of Majestic Son-Star's Balance boosted her lifetime bankroll to $189,669. Tony Hall piloted three winners on the 13-race card. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows

ANDERSON, IN - October 11, 2018- Sending six horses into a $2 million dollar night of racing could cause nervousness for some trainers, but to Roger Welch, it's treated like just another night. The Illinois native, who has amassed $18 million in career earnings as a trainer, says this is what he aims for. "You coach the team, you've made it to the Super Bowl, and now you play in it," Welch noted. "We've done our job; now it's racing luck." Welch was born and raised into the harness racing industry. His father, grandfather and great-grandfather raised horses, so this is all that he's ever known. Now in 2018, his barn continues to operate as a family business as he works with his wife, Amy, and his son, Ryan. Welch has 34 training wins at Hoosier Park this season and his stable has amassed $540,410 in purse earnings through 138 nights of racing. Welch is looking to increase those numbers in the Indiana Sires Stakes Super Finals on Friday, October 12, as he sends six of his top horses behind the gate with the hope of meeting them in the winner's circle: Queen Lagertha, Bridge To Jesse's, Tatiana Romanova, Voom Or Bang, Gate Speed and Always A Vavoom. Bridge To Jesse's, a five-year-old trotting gelding, is no stranger to the Indiana Sires Stakes stage. With 65 of his 66 lifetime starts at Hoosier Park resulting in 33 lifetime victories, he's a multiple Indiana Sires Stakes champion, winning his respective Indiana Sires Stakes final at ages two and four. The son of Jailhouse Jesse-Bridge To Nowhere has bankrolled $768,055 in lifetime purse earnings for his connections W. De Long, W. De Long, R. Welch and R. De Long. "He's a barn favorite and a people's favorite. He's a defending champion, and a champion in our eyes," Welch noted. "He's only ever had to race in Indiana until a few weeks ago. We try to keep him fresh and he also gets every winter off." Another rising star in the Welch barn is two-year-old pacing filly, Queen Lagertha. Once Welch starts talking about the filly, it's clear she's one of the favorite in this trainer's heart. "She has been a sweetheart from the first time I set eyes on her at the farm," Welch laughed when asked about her. "I bought her as an anniversary present to my wife, but a week or so we sold half of her to some partners." The two-year-old pacing fillies have been competitive this year, but Queen Lagertha is not one that should be overlooked. She's named after a character in The History Channel's "The Vikings," due to her resemblance to the beautiful, tough queen. Queen Lagertha, the two-year-old pacing filly, has earned $55,786 this season while winning three of 13 starts. The daughter of Always A Virgin-Wondering Heart has drawn the coveted rail position with David Miller enlisted to drive in the $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Final for two-year-old pacing fillies. "I'm having a good time watching her race, and you always have to cheer for your wife's horse." According to Welch, the best quality a trainer can possess is patience. While he's careful not to reveal his hand, he says it's important for the horses to be as fresh at the end of the season as they are at the start. "That's the important thing. That's how you know you've been successful with a horse." "I love racing at Hoosier Park," Welch noted. "I love racing in these races. This is what we work for every year, and this week is no different than a few weeks ago." Friday's first race will line-up behind the gate at 6:30 p.m. With purses in excess of $2 million, the Indiana Sires Stakes Super night will be the richest night offered in the Indiana Sires Stakes program this season featuring eight $220,000 finals on the evening's 14-race card. Friday's stakes filled card is part of Hoosier Park's 2018 Championship Meet, which features a $5 million stakes schedule. The twelve-week championship stretch, which kicked off on Friday, August 10 with the $325,000 Dan Patch Stakes, will offer an unparalleled series of high caliber stakes races. Friday will also feature a $5,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Handicapping Contest with a top prize of $2,500. To view all of the entries for Friday's 14-race card, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Rose Flood, for Hoosier Park  

Yonkers, NY--The proliferation of amateur driving organizations has been a boon to harness racing with active clubs in New York, New England, New Jersey, Ohio and Florida, And that's not counting the granddaddy of them all, the CKG Billings Harness Driving Series as well as the Hall of Fame Amateurs. Horses in races in the aforementioned not only abet the local racetracks betting cards but give true sportsmen(and women) an opportunity to enjoy the sport of driving a spirited steed. Arguably the busiest of all the driving organizations currently is the North American Amateur Drivers Association. They have hosted three European clubs and are currently in the process of hosting a fourth, the French. Add to that three local NAADA 10-race series--a fourth currently in the works-- and hardly a week goes by without races for theirr membership. Yesterday NAADA had two races against the French in a Friendship Competition at Monticello Raceway after an event at Yonkers on Tuesday. And perhaps all the action available is a reason why the NAADA Trot tonight (Thursday) at Yonkers only had five declared entrants and when the gate for their race sprung only three competed. In that contest Paul Minore sent his old veteran Wygant Prince to the lead from the three-hole and played catch me if you can, and nobody could. Minore and his charge got by the first stanza in :29.3 and the half in 1:01. Marching along in second place was Keenan and driver John Calabrese and third at that point was Gianni and Matt Zuccarello. Up the backside Wygant Prince seemed to put the pedal to the metal and he opened up a three-length lead as he passed the three quarters in 1:30.2 and the margin was opened to six at the wire as the timer flashed 2:00.1. Gianni trotted by Keenan in the stretch for second money. Minore owns the winner and has owned him since he began racing. The 11-year-old altered son of S Js Photo has amassed almost $430,000 in his illustrious career and earned a lifetime mark of 1:56.3 Minore, a former high school track coach entrusts the training duties to Taylor Gower. It was the 38th career victory for Wygant Prince. And for Minore it was his 100th win in the USA to go along with four wins against his counterparts in Europe. by John Manzi, for NAADA  

MANALAPAN, NJ -- October 11, 2018 -- The following message is from Mark Ford, President of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey.  "Contrary to our ongoing dialogue with the Meadowlands, we were not given any notice and were as much surprised as anyone to read their release indicating that they were putting in for a 68 day meet with a significant reduction of added-money events. We found this particularly disappointing in that we have been working very hard with various legislators and did feel that we had made progress in getting some assistance from the state. That said, a 68 day meet at the Meadowlands in 2019, which does violate their contract with the SBOA regarding a minimum amount of days, is clearly unacceptable and we will address that immediately." by Courtney Stafford, for the SBOANJ   

Coral Springs, FL – Harness racing driver Bruce Ranger was once the King of the Pompano Park track in south Florida and before that was the top driver in Maine for years. During his illustrious career he competed in nearly 50,000 races with 8,916 wins and purses won at $36,453,179. Then on June 27, 2015 after he finished fourth in the last race with Master Of Puppets at Pompano Park, Bruce Ranger walked away from harness racing. “I was beat back then,” Ranger explained. “Too many accidents, too many mornings jogging or training 15 to 20 horses, then driving in ten or more races at night. My back especially was so sore that I knew it was time to stop.” Ranger returned to his home state of Maine and began rehabilitation, living in Lewiston. He rested up, started to heal and even got married on September 23, 2016 to Mary Beth Beauregard. Now enters Joe Morris in the picture. “My cousin Joe Morris is the one who owns the starting gates up here and it was him that helped get me to get my license and get the job starting the races on the Maine Fair Circuit,” Ranger added. “If It was anyone else other than him I would have said no thank you,” Ranger said. “If anything, it gave me a reason to see him more often. He is my favorite cousin since I was a kid and has helped me in the past.” Now, gone from competing in harness racing for more than three years, Bruce Ranger is returning to the races once again as a driver. His first appearance will be aboard Miss American Bi in the fourth race trot at Scarborough Downs in Maine on Saturday. It’s the $56,437 Maine Standardbred Breeders Stakes for two-year-old trotting fillies. He has one other drive on card in the sixth race, with Saratoga Liz (post two) in the $89,311 Maine Standardbred Breeders Stake for three-year-old pacing fillies. Both horses are trained by Kim Ireland. “Here comes cousin Joe Morris again,” Ranger said. “He owns Saratoga Liz and put me down to drive and I also got another one of Kim’s (Ireland) horses.” After being away from racing for more than three years, Ranger is making his comeback with a bang in a couple of major stakes races.  “I got the itch,” Ranger said. “I was very fortunate to get the chance to learn and become a starting judge and then was able to get hired as the starter for the Maine Fair Circuit this summer. “I really enjoyed being the starter for the Maine Fair Circuit,” Ranger added. “It peaked my interest to get back on a sulky and drive. But, first I had to get back in shape again. I ate too much of that great Fair food every weekend.” Getting back in shape for Ranger has been enjoyable. “During the winters I do a lot of skiing,” Ranger said. “And when not working during the summer I love to go biking. It has really helped me get back into shape and both the skiing and biking is great fun. “I had really missed the changing of the seasons and wintertime,” Ranger said. “I’d rather be working a snow blower than jogging horses. So, what are Bruce Ranger’s plans for his return to driving? “Since I got the itch,” Ranger said. “I’ve been considering driving at Plainridge. They have some green now and their purses are much better than what is available in Maine. “Why not go down there and race for real money,” Ranger added. “I’ve been there before when they did not have any decent purses. It’s not that far away that I can make the trip. “I have to see how things go on Saturday,” Ranger said. “I could get behind a horse and right afterwards say “no more” and walk away again. I could also love it and want to do more. We’ll know after Saturday for sure.” When asked about returning to Pompano Park in Florida where Ranger won more than half of his 8,916 career wins, Ranger said “No thank you. I don’t want to race in the heat ever again. I was born and raised up here in New England and want to say around here.” By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink

With the 2018 race meet starting to wrap up at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino in Anderson, the Indiana Standardbred Breed Development Advisory Committee, Indiana Standardbred Advisory Board and interested horsemen met on October 10 to look ahead to 2019. At the top of everyone's list for 2019 was to look at the signature Indiana Sires Stakes program and how to make improvements to this already lucrative series. Attendees discussed the current structure and agreed it was no longer meeting the needs of program participants. After much discussion, the Breed Development Advisory Committee approved a modification to the structure of the Indiana Sires Stakes program for 2019. Members of the Standardbred Advisory Board present also supported this modification. The new structure will be included in the Breed Development's annual recommendation to the Indiana Horse Racing Commission, and will feature: Six legs for 2-Year-Olds leading up to a $250,000 Super Final Eight legs for 3-Year-Olds leading up to a $250,000 Super Final Super Final participants finishing 6th through 10th will receive a $4,000 purse payout each for earning their way into the Super Finals. The revamped Sire Stakes program is estimated to pay out $8.5 million in purses during 2019, in comparison to $7.8 million distributed during 2018. When combined with additional opportunities for Indiana Sired and/or Bred horses, such as Late Closers, Indiana Sired Overnights, Fair Stakes and the Mini Series, the 2019 Standardbred Breed Development Program will offer more than $13.6 million in purses and incentives for program participants. "At the end of the day, this has a lot of upside," says horseman and committee member Joe Putnam. "The board knew that something needed to change to help our breeders and horsemen participating in the Indiana Sire Stakes program," says Jessica Barnes, Director of Racing and Breed Development for the Indiana Horse Racing Commission. "The discussion was very helpful, and we appreciated hearing from the horsemen in attendance. We are excited to see how these proposed changes will help the program continue to flourish in the coming years." The 2018 edition of the Indiana Sire Stakes Super Finals night commences Friday, October 12 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, with the y state's top bred Standardbreds competing for more than $2 million in purses. For more information on the Indiana Sire Stakes or harness racing in Indiana, reach out to the IHRC at 317-232-2897 or by emailing Standardbred@hrc.in.gov. by Megan Arszman, for the Indiana Horse Racing Commission  

CHESTER, PA -Jack Vernon had to overcome the tough first-over journey in the $18,000 featured trot at Harrah's Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, but the fast Muscle Hill gelding not only did so, but came within a fifth of his lifetime best in stopping the timer in 1:53.2. Race favorite Tyson took command early, then submitted to a brushing move to control the pace by New Jersey Viking past the 27.3 opener. The new leader got a breather to the half in 57, but then Jack Vernon got underway under Andy Miller's handling, getting even with the pacesetter near the 1:24.4 ¾ pole, edging away on the turn, then withstanding the late comeback bid of Tyson by a half length. The victory was the third in a row for the Julie Miller trainee, who now has earnings of $191,248 for the Andy Miller Stable Inc. A pair of $14,500 diamondgaited events were also conducted on the "Trottin' Thursday" card at Philly. In the first, the Andover Hall mare Casa Palmera regained her winning ways, able to outclose Zlatan and Band's Houdini to win in 1:54 for her sixth win in 15 starts during 2018. George Napolitano Jr. handled sulky duties for trainer Ed Lohmeyer, who shares ownership with Dr. Patricia Hogan. Napolitano's trip in the other $14,500 event was much more adventurous -- you don't see a line like this too often: PP2 / x2oo / 3o / 2o / 2|1 / 4|2T. But such was the fate of the Napolitano-driven favorite Yuge, who broke on the lead late on the first turn, then recovered and pressured pacesetting second choice Crazy About Pat, who refused to surrender the lead under Eric Carlson's handling en route to a 1:55.1 triumph. Gilbert Garcia-Herrera trains and owns the veteran Crazed gelding, who in winning for the 36th time in his career boosted his earnings to $818,510. Tim Tetrick drove four winners on the Thursday card, cutting Napolitano's lead to 192-184 at the top of the Harrah's driver standings. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

Scarborough, Maine - October 11, 2018 .... The Maine Sire Stakes Championship round takes center stage during Festival of Champions Day on Saturday (10/13) at Scarborough Downs, and with over $600,000 in purse money on the line, this will be the richest day in Maine Harness Racing history. Eight Maine Sire Stakes Championship races will anchor the eleven race program which is slated to get underway at 1:30 p.m. (EDT) while a festival atmosphere overtakes the historic grandstand at the southern Maine racing venue. Fans will be welcomed at a special trackside tented pavilion area that has been created specifically for the event. Country Roads, one of Maine's premier country music bands will perform in between races, local food trucks will provide tantalizingly delicious food offerings, and a trackside beer garden will be featured. Local radio station WPOR will be broadcasting live from the Downs throughout the afternoon, registering attendees for a grand prize flyaway trip for two to the CMA Awards Show in Nashville (provided by EMI Records - Nashville). The only place to register for the trip will be at Scarborough Downs on Saturday and the winner will be drawn trackside at 4:30 pm. Admission and programs are free on Festival of Champions Day, and fans will also have the opportunity to enter to win a $1000 Cash Giveaway. Face painting and trackside games will delight the kids on Saturday while everyone will enjoy meeting Luigi, the ice cream eating horse, as he joins the festivities in his trackside pen. "This is the harness racing party they'll be talking about for years to come" said Wendy Ireland, president of the Maine Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association. "We wanted to create a festive atmosphere to help showcase these championship races, and with the help of the Downs, I think we've come up with the perfect mix." Scarborough Downs features live harness racing every Saturday and Sunday at 1:30 pm (EDT) through December 9th. For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs

North American drivers participating in Saturday's (Oct. 13) $1 million Yonkers International Trot face several challenges as they prepare for the event, most notably learning about their rivals -- and in some cases their own horse -- in addition to contemplating the best path to victory in a 10-horse field going 1-1/4 miles. "My deal is to know the competition the best I can and make decisions as it plays out," said Brian Sears, who is driving in the International Trot for the third time since its renewal in 2015 at Empire City Casino's Yonkers Raceway. Sears will be behind Cruzado Dela Noche, starting from post six, on Saturday. "My job is to learn some of these horses, which is what makes this race so difficult to win. You don't really know the competition as well as you'd like. As the race unfolds, you'll see things happen and you try to make decisions to put your horse in the best spot. But I think you have to be aggressive. You have to be as aggressive as you can get away with." Winners of the three most recent International Trots each accomplished the feat in different ways -- one of which no longer exists. In 2015, Norway's Papagayo E got a ground-saving trip behind leader Creatine and used the passing lane to earn the victory. The passing lane has since been eliminated at Yonkers. In 2016, U.S. representative Resolve led virtually from start to finish en route to his triumph. Last year, Italy's Twister Bi raced on the outside and methodically chased down leader Resolve before powering away to win by 5-1/2 lengths. Marion Marauder, who is the 3-1 morning-line favorite in Saturday's race, finished second last year. He started from post No. 1 and got away in seventh place around the first turn. He will start again from post one on Saturday. "When I had the rail last year it was a learning experience," said Scott Zeron, who drives Marion Marauder. "I pushed him off the wings enough to get him well situated, but I had to have a lot of luck on my side as well with not being able to pull the right line and go to the outer flow. "It could end up like that again this year, but I know I have a horse that's capable of winning this race. I let him leave at his own comfort. It will be playing it by ear when I go off the wings. We'll see two steps off the gate where I'm going to get situated. Hopefully I have an opportunity to race him." Trotting races at the distance of 1-1/4 miles are nothing new at Yonkers and looking back at 37 such races on Sundays in July to September shows horses that were no worse than third at the half-mile point won nearly 84 percent of the time. Horses that led at the half won 18 times while horses that were second won seven and horses third won six. Posts one and six produced the most winners, with seven each, followed by post five with six. "It's a benefit," Zeron said about the extra experience of racing 1-1/4 miles at Yonkers. "The difference with this race compared to a regular Sunday is having 10 horses that all can win. There are no long shots. These are the best of the best." Jason Bartlett, who has won seven driving titles at Yonkers including the past four, is making his first appearance in the International Trot. He will drive France's Up And Quick, who counts the 2015 Prix d'Amerique among five career Group 1 wins in Europe. Up And Quick will start from post two. "I thought the draw was very good," Bartlett said. "It gives me options. I don't really know the horse, but I'll do a little homework on him and go from there. I've talked to Bjorn Goop who drove him three starts ago. I'll watch some replays on him. That's all I can really do. I'll get a feel for him going into the turn when I score him down and that's it. "I think the biggest part I've got to learn is a little bit about the competition, each horse in the race. It's the best trotters in the world, the best drivers; you can't really go in with a game plan. "For me, it's my first time in this race. Winning it would be very special to me being that it's my home track. I'm just thankful to have the opportunity. It's going to be an interesting race." Sears will be driving Sweden's Cruzado Dela Noche for the first time. Cruzado Dela Noche raced in the U.S. at ages 2 and 3, winning a division of the International Stallion Stakes and finishing third in the Peter Haughton Memorial. In Europe, his victories include the Group 1 Copenhagen Cup. "I just hope that he's on his toes and puts up a good race," Sears said. "(To win) would be a feather in your cap. It's one of the biggest races and it's very hard to get done. To be able to accomplish that would be quite a victory, no doubt." Yannick Gingras, with Ariana G, and Tim Tetrick, with Will Take Charge, are both making their second appearances in the International Trot and enter with horses they drive regularly. It will be the first time on a half-mile track for Ariana G, a two-time Dan Patch Award-winner who is the lone mare in the race. "She's very square gaited, she's two fingers to drive, so I don't see (the half) being any problem at all," Gingras said. "I think if anything it will work in her favor. She's got it all, honestly. She's got the speed, you can stop-and-go anytime you want, and she's great gaited. I keep saying about her being great gaited, I hope I don't jinx her. "She's just so smart," he added. "Maybe that's her best attribute. I think I've got as good a shot as anybody." Racing at Yonkers begins at 1 p.m. (EDT) Saturday. The International Trot is race No. 8 on the card and scheduled for 3:40 p.m. The day also includes the $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot, featuring the fastest trotter in history, Homicide Hunter, plus the $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace, featuring the continued rivalry between McWicked and New Zealand-bred Lazarus. Following is the field in post-position order for the $1 million Yonkers International Trot. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Marion Marauder-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-3/1 2-Up And Quick-Jason Bartlett-Antoine Lherete-10/1 3-Ariana G-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/1 4-Ringostarr Treb-Wim Paal-Jerry Riordan-4/1 5-Pastore Bob-Johan Untersteiner-Johan Untersteiner-8/1 6-Cruzado Dela Noche-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-12/1 7-Will Take Charge-Tim Tetrick-Jeff Gillis-6/1 8-Arazi Boko-Alessandro Gocciadoro-Alessandro Gocciadoro-15/1 9-Lionel-Goran Antonsen-Daniel Reden-10/1 10-Slide So Easy-Flemming Jensen-Flemming Jensen-15/1 * Lionel and Slide So Easy start from the second tier. For more information, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) and Yonkers Raceway at Empire City Casino will partner to offer horseplayers a special all-stakes thoroughbred/standardbred Pick 4 on Saturday, October 13. The latest in NYRA's fall series of special Pick 4 Wagers, the Belmont-Yonkers Pick 4 includes the $1 Million Yonkers International Trot and the $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational from Empire City Casino along with the $200,000 Pebbles and $100,000 Floral Park Stakes from Belmont Park. "NYRA's continued partnership with Yonkers Raceway results in unique wagering opportunities for New York horseplayers," said Will Alempijevic, NYRA Director of Business Development. "For the second consecutive year, we're thrilled to have successfully paired two great stakes races from Belmont with the best and richest day of harness racing in New York." "Yonkers International Trot Day offers our best racing program of the season, featuring world-class trotters and pacers," Raceway COO Bob Galterio said. "For the International and the Harry Harvey Trot to be included in a special Pick 4 with two of Belmont's stakes races allows us to showcase our events to NYRA's audience, and we encourage them to enjoy the best harness racing anywhere. As always, we couldn't do it without the cooperation of the New York State Gaming Commission and both horsemen's associations." Past performances for the Yonkers International Trot and Harry Harvey Invitational will be included in the Saturday, October 13 Post Parade program, while past performances for the Floral Park and Pebbles Stakes will be found in Yonkers' Saturday program. The Belmont-Yonkers Pick 4, to be hosted by NYRA with a $0.50 minimum wager and 24 percent takeout, will be available on-track, to members of NYRA Bets and Empire City Bets as well as in simulcast facilities across the country. For more information on the Belmont-Yonkers Pick 4 please visit https://www.nyra.com/belmont/racing/wagering-promotions. The Belmont-Yonkers Pick 4 Race 1: $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot (Yonkers Race 7 at 3:00 p.m.) Race 2: $1 Million Yonkers International Trot (Yonkers Race 8 at 3:20 p.m.) Race 3: $100,000 Floral Park (Belmont Race 8 at 4:43 p.m.) Race 4: $200,000 Pebbles (Belmont Race 9 at 5:18 p.m.) by Najja Thompson, for the NYRA

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands will apply for 68 live racing dates for the 2019 season by the October 15, request for dates deadline of the NJ Racing Commission. The main factor in forcing us to reduce dates is the failure to obtain a purse subsidy that would enable us to compete with the Pennsylvania tracks when they open in late March. By reducing dates we believe it would help to be able to attract enough horses to race during that period and we are quite certain that without the subsidy racing more than 68 days would be impossible. The thoroughbreds have also advised us that they would like to race in the fall and they have the legal right to do that but we believe that if we were able to get the subsidy, which is split between the standardbreds and thoroughbreds, we might be able to work out a schedule that would be beneficial to both breeds. This will unfortunately force The Meadowlands to drop the fall stakes program. The Fall Final Four and possibly the TVG Championships will have to be relocated or cancelled along with The Kindergarten series. The purse account deficit is another issue as without any subsidy the funds available limiting the daily average to approximately $110,000 which is not enough to attract enough horses to fill Meadowlands cards when the PA tracks open. Fewer dates will permit an increase as we attempt to field races that will be attractive to the horseplayers. As it stands with Monmouth racing in the fall and the purse revenue status quo, the schedule will be Friday & Saturday from January 4 through Hambletonian Day August 3 then Thursday - Saturday the last two weeks of December. We hope in the next few weeks that the legislature will act on the purse subsidy legislation in which case we would revisit this with the expectation that we could increase the race dates including a modified fall schedule. by Rachel Ryan, for the Meadowlands  

The Ohio Sires Stakes Consolations for 2- and 3-year-old trotters and pacers of both genders will be contested this Saturday evening, Oct. 13, at Northfield Park. First race post time is 6 pm, ET. The day features a full realm of Buckeye State racing, with Thoroughbreds spotlighted at nearby Jack Thistledown, as they break from the Cleveland gait in five $150,000 stakes for Ohio-bred runners. Freshmen and sophomore Standardbreds not eligible to the $275,000 OSS Championships on Sept. 7 at Scioto Downs, have a chance to redeem themselves via these eight $60,000 OSS Consolations. These youngsters may have captured an OSS leg during the past season but failed to garner enough points to enter the rich Championships. Thus, by virtue of their points earned, the remaining top eight horses will now vie in the final OSS contests of the 2018 season. Bella's Rose Power is one such filly. This Chris Beaver trainee garnered checks in three of her four OSS legs for owners Beaer, Gallagher, Beachy and Zeehandelar. The Triumphant Caviar lass comes into the 2-year-old filly trot (Race 1) with $50,135 in her coffers and a mark of 1:58 taken in an overnight score at Scioto Downs on Sept. 5. TC's Best and Ilooklikeanallstar both won an OSS leg early in the season. These two are the standouts in the 2-year-old colt trot (Race 3). TC's Best won his first leg for trainer and co-owner Chris Beaver, but was less successful the remainder of the season, earning $29,043. Ilooklikeanallstar, won his OSS second leg in 1:58.1 at Scioto in his only check-earning effort of the series for trainer Kim Dailey and owner Virginia Powell. This son of Ilooklikemymom has earnings of $34,286 from two wins in nine starts. Dragonfly, a Dragon Again filly, was fourth and fifth in the first two OSS legs in her division, then didn't start in the last two legs. Trained by Chris McGuire, Dragonfly comes into the 2-year-old filly pace (Race 4) with a five-race win streak intact and $38,535 in her coffers. Likewise, Officially My Way is riding a four-race win streak as she paces into this consolation for trainer/owner Ron Randall. This Art Official distaff has $43,263 in earnings from 10 wins in 16 starts, and although she failed to win an OSS leg, did garner third, fourth and fifth-place checks in the three legs in which she participated. Yankee Boots finished a solid second in the fourth OSS leg for 2-year-old pacing colts, then promptly won his last three events, including the $40,000 Buckeye Stallion Series Final (BSS) one week ago. This Yankee Cruiser gelding starts from post three (Race 6) for trainer Steve Carter. He has nine wins in 14 starts and $93,010 for owners Carter, Grubbs, Carter and Whitacre. To Russia notched checks in all four of her OSS starts for trainer Scott Cox, and just missed getting into the Championship. However, she did win a series of Ohio Fair Stakes, earning $66,302 this year to date. The daughter of Manofmanymissions heads up the 3-year-old filly consolation (Race 5). Infrontandforgetit finished third in her lone OSS start, and since captured a $15,000 BSS division and the $40,000 BSS Final at Northfield last week for trainer Jim Arledge, Jr. This winner of $65,726 lifetime starts from the rail in this same event. The 3-year-old colt and gelding trot (Race 7) appears to be a wide-open race, with the Hugh Beatty-trained and driven Secret Bro garnering the slight nod. This Dejarmbro gelding was unraced as a freshman and was fourth and third in his first two OSS legs before opting out of the last two contests. He scored in a $15,000 BSS leg and was third in the BSS Final. Secret Bro is owned by Stephen Sexton and has $38,855 in his bankroll from three wins, two seconds and four thirds in 16 starts this year. Sweetnfamous hails from post two for trainer Virgil Morgan in the 3-year-old filly pace (Race 8). This Yankee Cruiser sophomore skipped her first OSS leg, then was third, fourth and second in the remaining legs for the Let It Ride Stables of Boca Raton, Fl. Though she's had only four wins in 17 starts this season, Sweetnfamous sports a healthy bankroll of $87,651 for her connections. Trainer Ronnie Burke sends out a one-two punch in the 3-year-old colt and gelding pace (Race 9) with Super Pac Hanover and Dragonology. The former gets the benefit of the rail, while the latter has drawn the six-hole. Super Pac Hanover is a $42,550-earning gelding, while Dragonology has $128,167 earned lifetime-both by the ill-fated Dragon Again. Another son of Dragon Again, the Kimberly Dailey-conditioned Drew The Dragon, also is worth watching in here. The winner of $70,338 comes into this race fresh off a win in a Dayton overnight on Oct. 4 in 1:52.2. by Kimberly Rinker, OSDF Administrator             Kimberly Rinker   OSDF Administrator   Ohio State Racing Commission   77 South High Sreet, 18th Floor   Columbus, Ohio 43215   614-779-0269   Kim.rinker@racing.ohio.gov      

The Lexington Selected Yearling Sale was held this past week in Lexington Kentucky and set all-time new records grossing nearly $40 million for 702 yearlings sold - an increase of 9.2% over last year. Leading the charge on the pacing side were the father-son team Somebeachsomewhere and Captaintreacherous. “The Beach” was once again the number one pacing sire with 26 yearlings sold for a total of $2,763,000 and an incredible average of $106,269. “The Captain” had a phenomenal sale and was second behind his sire with total sales of $5,042,000 for 58 yearlings sold averaging $86,931. The highest priced pacing yearling of the was Treasure Trove by Somebeacsomewhere. Treasure Trove, the full brother to Captaintreacherous, provided some spirited bidding with the hammer being knocked down at $360,000 and was undoubtedly the highlight of the sale. Two Captaintreacherous yearling colts sold for $300,000 Hip# 41 Das Deo and Hip# 54 Force N Fury. Das Deo, is a full brother to the brilliant two-year-old De Los Cielos Deo p,2,1:51.3f-’18, winner of 5 races and $194,210 in stakes earnings this season. Hip # 54 Force N Fury was also sold for $300,000 and purchased by Tony Alanga – the trainer of Captaintreacherous. Force N Fury is a half-brother to the $500,000 Messenger Stakes & $281,000 Cane Pace Champion Stay Hungary p,3,1:47.3 ($1,295,709) by Somebeachsomewhere. Captaintreacherous also sold a filly, Hip #19 Emissary, for $225,000, two colts for $200,000 and 20 yearlings for $100,000+. Captaintreacherous leads all sires on the North American 2YO Money Winning Sires List from his first crop to race with 113 foals, 83 starters, 35 in 1:55 or faster and earnings of $2,587,674 to date.   TOP FIVE LEXINGTON PACING SIRE AVERAGES                 STALLION                                          SOLD                                        AVERAGE   Somebeachsomewhere                        26                                           $106,269   Captaintreacherous                              58                                           $  86,931   Bettor's Delight                                     21                                           $  70,095   American Ideal                                      30                                           $  49,933   Sweet Lou                                              26                                           $  49,462 Harnesslink Media

ANDERSON, IN  - Oct. 10, 2018-The 2018 Indiana Sires Stakes program will culminate at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, Oct. 12 with the $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Finals. The star-studded 14-race card will showcase the best trotters and pacers in the state of Indiana and provide an exciting conclusion to the 2018 Indiana stakes season. With purses in excess of $2 million, the Indiana Sires Stakes Super night will be the richest night offered in the Indiana Sires Stakes program this season featuring eight $220,000 finals. The two and three-year-olds competing in the Super finals have accumulated points throughout the season, based on performance in the previous $75,000 finals, and the top point earners have earned the right to seek glory in the $220,000 finals. Complimenting the program will be four divisions for the aged competitors, each carrying a purse of $50,000. The $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Finals will start in the third race on the program with a field of ten two-year-old pacing fillies. Divisional leader Glorious Virgin and Hoosier Park's leading driver Trace Tetrick have been enlisted as the 8-5 morning line choice and will start from post five. The daughter of Always A Virgin-Bound For Glory is trained by Shane Bowermaster and has won seven of 10 starts while bankrolling $185,250 this season. Driver Yannick Gingras will venture back to Hoosier Park to steer the 4-5 morning line choice, Swandre The Giant, from post eight in the $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Final for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. Now trained by Jimmy Takter, Swandre The Giant remains undefeated in stakes action at Hoosier Park this season and is currently riding a two-race win streak. Swandre The Giant will be one of seven drives on the program for Gingras who is currently the second leading driver in the country based on wins. The $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Final for three-year-old trotting colts will feature an exciting match-up between rookie, divisional leader, Katkin American and the 2017 Breeders Crown Champion, Fiftydallarbill. Fiftydallarbill will play the role of morning line favorite and will start from the coveted rail position with Trace Tetrick in the bike. Katkin American will start from post five with regular pilot James Yoder in the sulky. The sophomore pacing sensation Always A Prince will put his five-race winning streak on the line facing nine other rivals in the $220,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Super Final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Trained by Tyler George and driven by Trace Tetrick, the son of Always A Virgin-Glorious Princess has won 16 of 19 starts this season and will start from the trailing post position ten as the 4-5 morning line choice. In addition to all of the exciting races on the track, there will be a multitude of activities for racing fans to enjoy off the track. Hoosier Park and the Indiana Standardbred Association (ISA) have once again partnered to offer numerous giveaways and live entertainment throughout the evening. A $5,000 Indiana Sires Stakes handicapping contest will be offered for racing fans on-track with a top prize of $2,500. Registration for the handicapping contest is free but limited to the first 300 guests. Registration will begin at 2:00 p.m. The first race will line-up behind the gate at 6:30 p.m. Friday's stakes filled card is part of Hoosier Park's 2018 Championship Meet, which features a $5 million stakes schedule. The twelve-week championship stretch, which kicked off on Friday, August 10 with the $325,000 Dan Patch Stakes, will offer an unparalleled series of high caliber stakes races. To view all of the entries for Friday's 14-race card, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. With a carry-over in excess of $6,500, Hoosier Park Racing & Casino has announced a $20,000 Guaranteed Hoosier High-5 pool for Thursday, October 11. In partnership with the Unites States Trotting Association Strategic Wagering program and the Indiana Standardbred Association, Hoosier Park will offer this signature wager for the action packed 13-race card on Thursday that is set to begin at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday’s 14-race card was primarily ruled by longshots finding the winner’s circle over a sloppy rated track after heavy rains earlier in the day. In the last race of the evening, driver Andy Shetler guided Hypnotic Racer to a $17.80 upset. The Hoosier High-5, also known as the pentafecta, is featured in the last race of every program at Hoosier Park and features a reduced takeout of 12%. The Hoosier High-5 is responsible for the season’s third biggest payout to date this season with a $12,775.94 winning ticket paid out in August. The $20,000 Guaranteed Hoosier High-5 pool will be offered in addition to the regularly scheduled $10,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 in races 3-6. The $10,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 offers a 50-cent minimum wager. Approximate post time for the first leg of the wager, the third race, is 7:06 p.m. (EST.). Free past performances for the sequences will be available on the USTA website. Expert selections and handicapping tools are also available on the handicapping section of Hoosier Park’s website. Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 10. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. by Emily Gaskin, for Hoosier Park

Monticello, NY-- He has been competing with amateur status since he began driving but today (Wed. Oct. 10) at Monticello Raceway Tony Ciuffetelli drove like a professional when he won both divisions of the French v America Friendship competition. The former corrections officer won one race from behind and the other on the front-end. In the third race Ciuffetelli avoided the congestion in front of him and rallied Sams Fortune to a come-from-behind triumph in 2:03.4 over seven rivals and three races later he sent Brandos Music Man to the front and made every pole a winning one en route to a 2:00.4 victory. "This is my first driving double and I'm certainly thrilled" a smiling Ciuffetelli said in the paddock as he handed the reins to the horse's caretaker. Starting from the two-hole with Sams Fortune Ciuffetelli got away slowly as four others sped for the lead. They were in fifth place when the field passed the first quarter as France's Ms Sandrine Oyer was stuck on the limb with Five Star Stud. A the race progressed French driver Jerome Maillard had Tattle Tell Teen on the lead as Frenchman Jean Marc Freyssence and Four Star Lefty were second -over behind Ms Oyer's pacer which sort of made a block for anyone trying to get around. Sensing a problem the USA's Alan Schwartz wheeled Lightning Madison three-deep and they paced by the leaders and opened daylight and were followed by Ciuffetelli and Sams Fortune. At the top of the lane Lightning Madison they had a three -length lead and despite being hung-out the entire way Five Star Stud was still in contention. At that point Sams Fortune was fifth on the far outside still five lengths off the leader. But as the field progressed in the lane Lightning Madison faded to finish third and Sams Fortune rallied to a length victory over Five Star Stud. "I made it through the traffic and when we finally cleared and headed for home my horse was the strong horse and we went on to win it," Ciuffetelli explained. The winner is owned by Pete and Donna Siebert and trained by Siebert, He paid $7.80. After all the road trouble Ciuffetelli had in the first event he hustled the betting favorite Brandos Muscle Man to the lead from the six-hole and played catch me if you can,-.. and nobody could. They chugged along unchallenged for a one-length victory in a time of 2:00.4 as his French rivals finished second and third. With a two-hole trip France's Jerome Malliard was second best with Ralph R and his countryman, Jean Marc Freyssence, third with Bootswiththefur, albeit in a dead-heat with Linda Marie, driven by the USA's Jerry Fielding. "He's a classy old horse," Ciuffetelli said referring to Brandos Muscle Man, "And even though the old veteran knew just what to do I still had to keep after him in the stretch." The winner is owned by Rick Dane and Monica Banca and trained by Dane. He paid $4.80. For Ciuffetelli, who has sights on possibly being the amateur driver of the year, his seasons stats after today's races are: 10-7-6 in 50 starts with a UDR of .318. On Friday, the final race in the America v France Friendship Competition will be at the Meadowlands. by John Manzi, for NAADA