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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - If excelling with trotters was a course one could take in school, there's little doubt Ake Svanstedt would get straight 'A's. Saturday night at the Meadowlands, Svanstedt - serving as both harness racing trainer and driver - won both divisions of the first leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-olds on the trot with Six Pack and Muscle M Up. In the first division, the look of the race changed with the scratch of 2018 Hambletonian champion Atlanta, but that appeared to suit Six Pack just fine. The son of Muscle Mass-Pleasing Lady was on the move from the start and moved to the lead while parked past the quarter in :27.2, putting 3-5 favorite Fiftydallarbill in the pocket. A :30.3 sleepwalk of a second quarter followed as the top two betting choices raced 1-2 all the way to the wire. Fiftydallarbill rallied some in deep stretch but was no threat to Six Pack, who held on by a half-length in 1:53.1 in his 2019 debut. As the 6-5 second choice, Six Pack returned $4.40 to his backers while winning for the 16th time from 24 career starts, good for earnings of $1,383,290. A year ago, his major wins included the Kentucky Futurity and Yonkers Trot. While Six Pack has a monster resume, stablemate Muscle M Up does not, but that did not stop the son of Muscle Hill-Fashion Athena from taking the other Graduate division in a sizzling lifetime best of 1:51.2. Svanstedt once again asked his horse for early speed and got it, racing on the lead at the quarter in :27.2 before yielding to 3-5 chalk Mission Accepted. Crystal Fashion raced first-over to go after the leader around the far turn with Muscle M Up waiting for some space to race. He found it by swerving out to the four path for the stretch drive once there was enough clearance to do so and cruised past the field to record a half-length win over Crystal Fashion. Mission Accepted was third. The winner returned $17.60 to his backers as the third choice in the wagering and won for the seventh time in 14 lifetime starts. His earnings stand at $87,972. A LITTLE MORE: Tim Tetrick drove four winners on the card, while Andy McCarthy had two to run his total to nine over the last three programs. ... Betting on the 50-Cent Pick-4 was vigorous as a total of $111,102 was poured into the pot. Those sharp enough to have the sequence with winner's odds of 4-1, 7-1, 7-2 and 11-1 hit for $1,182.15. ... Conditions were ideal as of the 11 pacing events on the card, seven went in under 1:50. ... All-source wagering was just short of the $3 million mark, as $2,947,166 was pushed through the windows. ... Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. Gabe Prewitt will make his return to the Meadowlands' TV team and serve as co-host of the live in-house simulcast show.   By Dave Little Meadowlands Media Relations

Fans got their first look at Swedish-bred trotter Darling Mearas during Saturday's (May 11) qualifiers at The Meadowlands Racetrack, but they will have to wait a little longer than anticipated to see the 6-year-old mare in her first race in North America. Darling Mearas, who earned $750,199 in Europe and counted the 2016 Swedish Trotting Oaks and 2018 European Championship for harness racing mares among her wins, posted a 1:56.1 victory in her Big M qualifier for trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. But Svanstedt was not completely happy with the performance, so he plans to delay Darling Mearas' debut, which was expected to come in Monday's (May 20) first round of the Miss Versatility Series at Woodbine Mohawk Park. "She trained back good but when she qualified, I was not a hundred percent satisfied with her," said Svanstedt, who took over the training of Darling Mearas following her arrival in the U.S. earlier this spring. "We're not going to race her yet. We're going to wait a couple of weeks. Her gait was not perfect in the last turn. She must feel a little bit better." Darling Mearas, a daughter of Cantab Hall out of the Muscles Yankee mare Khao Manee, won 12 of 29 races in Europe for trainer Stefan Persson and breeder-owner Snogarps GÃ¥rd, a farm run by the Wihlborg family. The family might be best known to North American racing fans as the owner of 2014 Breeders Crown champion Commander Crowe, who earned $5.09 million worldwide in his career. Calle Wihlborg told Sweden's Sulky Sport magazine the decision to send Darling Mearas to North America was made in part because she would have more opportunities to race in stakes events restricted to mares. Svanstedt was selected as the trainer because "purely historically, he has been very good at getting older horses to take another step." Darling Mearas is staked to a number of Grand Circuit events this season, including the Breeders Crown, Armbro Flight, Dr. John R. Steele Memorial, and the TVG Championship. "The plan is to race her here this summer and then breed her with a top stallion here in America next spring," Svanstedt said. "She is a good horse. She was one of the best mares and she was a good horse in the stakes races when she was young. She has a lot of power and she wants to do the job. She is always nice to drive and if you ask her, she does the job."   Ken Weingartner Media Relations Manager U.S. Trotting Association www.ustrotting.com

CHESTER PA – The stars of the day Friday at Harrah’s Philadelphia, where three-year-old trotting fillies contested their first preliminary harness racing round in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes and Pennsylvania Stallion Series, were driver Yannick Gingras, sire Cantab Hall – and a $200,000 yearling, never on the board in seven previous career starts, winning a Sire Stakes section and paying $100.80, or more than the other thirteen winners on the card combined. The longshot special was Hallintheclouds, who wasn’t a longshot on pedigree – sired by Cantab Hall, who added three Stallion Series credits, and out of the Yankee Glide mare Headintheclouds, the dam of the $870G+ winner Barn Girl. And she wasn’t a longshot in the mind of trainer/driver Åke Svanstedt, who sent her to the lead just after a :28 opener, then brought her back uncovered after two horses had passed her to the :57.2 half. Hallintheclouds went right up to favored Magical Beliefs, looked her in the eye to the 1:26.1 three-quarters, and went right on by headstretch, trotting out a 2 1/2 length winner over Firedbylindie, also used early and late, in a new mark of 1:55.4 for Åke Svanstedt Inc., Little E LLC, Fayette AB, and Gabriella’s LLC. Gingras had four trips to the Philly winners circle Friday, including one in the Stallion Series and two in the Sire Stakes. The fastest mile among the sophomore misses was the 1:54 posted in the Sires by the Muscle Hill filly Asiago (also a $200,000 yearling, with My MVP close-up on her dam’s side). Gingras guided her to the early lead, set fractions of :27.3, :57, and 1:24.3, then coasted home four lengths to the good of Matter Of Fact for trainer Per Engblom, and the ownership of Marvin Katz, Sam Goldband, Al Libfeld, and Black Horse Racing. Another Sire Stakes winner for Gingras was the Muscle Massive miss Sonnet Grace, who made her 2019 debut a successful one. The well-bred filly (CR Kay Suzie is her granddam) set fractions of :27.4, :57, and 1:25, then held off the late rush of longshot Personal Pride (Svanstedt -- a foreshadowing of the next division?) by a nose for trainer Ron Burke and the Sonnet Grace Stable. The Possess The Will filly Millies Possesion, unraced at two, is undefeated in two career starts after setting an individual standard of 1:54.4 in the other Sires section. Dexter Dunn patiently worked up to the lead with “Millie” past a :28 opener, then put up middle splits of :57.2 and 1:25.3, after which she still had plenty to be three lengths clear of Jezzys Legacy on the wire for trainer Jim Campbell and Fashion Farms LLC. All five Stallion Series winners lowered their marks in victory. The three daughters of Cantab Hall who won were Cant Touch It, a 1:55.3 winner in her seasonal debut while a neck to the good of Swizzle Sticks for driver Scott Zeron, trainer Nancy Johansson, and the partnership of Christina Takter, John Fielding, and Stephen Gordon; Altercation, who withstood Lindy Misssunshine by a neck in 1:56.3 for driver Marcus Miller, trainer Jenny Melander, and the ownership of Melander Racing Inc. Noonan Harness Racing LLC, Clark Stables LLC, and John Devito; and Keystone Abbey, a half length winner over Giant Possession in 1:56.4 for driver George Napolitano Jr. and trainer Chris Beaver, the latter co-owner with Donald Robertson, Martin Yoder, and R.B.H. Ventures Inc. The Donato Hanover filly American Kronos was sharp in her 2019 bow, winning by three lengths over Matterlei in 1:54.3, fastest of all Stallion Series divisions, and quicker than three of the four Sire Stakes cuts. Yannick Gingras drove for trainer Julie Miller and owners Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld, and David Goodrow. The final Stallion Series victress was the Explosive Matter miss Spring In Paris, now five-for-six in 2019 after downing Fashion Rachel by a three length margin in 1:55.1 for driver Andrew McCarthy, trainer Steve LeBlanc, and Leblanc Racing Inc., Glenn Dyke, and Douglas Johnson. PHHA / Harrah's Philadelphia Jerry Connors

The finish of the August 5, 2017 $1 million Hambletonian, was the subject of two judge's inquiries, and resulted in the winner of the richest race for sophomore trotters being disqualified and placed out of the money for the first time in Hambletonian history. The appeal of that judge's decision has been finalized and purse monies from the event held 18 months ago were recently order disbursed by the NJ Racing Commission. What The Hill, driven by Dave Miller and trained by Ron Burke, was fourth in his Hambletonian elimination heat, but came roaring back in the final heat of the Hambletonian to win in 1:52.3. The inquiry light was flashed and after reviewing the race for two incidents - International Moni's break in the first turn and Guardian Angel AS going off stride in the stretch - both were deemed interference breaks, and What The Hill was placed ninth behind Guardian Angel AS, who galloped when the wheel of What The Hill's sulky struck his hoof. Second-place finisher Perfect Spirit, driven and trained by Ake Svanstedt, was placed first, his owners SRF Stable entered the winner circle and accepted the Hambletonian trophy, and they will now receive the disputed part of the purse totaling $275,000 as well. The judge's ruling, which also suspended David Miller for three days for careless driving, was appealed and eventually heard by the Office of Administrative Law as a contested case. In a ruling dated March 26, 2019, the NJ Racing Commission adopted the decision of the Administrative Law Judge, which confirmed the initial judge's ruling and ordered the purse money held in escrow be paid. The earnings of the participants and the race history will now officially reflect the following in finish order: Perfect Spirit receives difference between 2nd and 1st place money: $275,000.00 Devious Man receives the difference between 3rd and 2nd place money: $117,000.00 Enterprise receives the difference between 4th and 3rd place money: $36,000.00 Bills Man receives the difference between 5th and 4th place money: $27,000.00 Victor Gio T receives the difference between 5th and 6th place money. $35,000.00. The remaining 6-10 finishers, including What The Hill who was placed 9th, received the $10,000 starter's share of the purse.   What The Hill went on to win the Canadian Trotting Classic and Breeders Crown as well as the TVG against older trotters, and was voted Dan Patch honoree for his division. Now standing at Hickory Lane Farm in Ohio, he attracted 140 mares in his first year at stud and will welcome his first foal crop this year. Perfect Spirit continues to race as 5-year-old in Sweden and has earned over $1 million.   Moira Fanning

Dover, DE — A pair of long shots in This Is The Plan and The Downtown Bus stole the show in the $193,750 Matron Stakes for 3-year-old harness racing pacing colts and geldings on Thursday (Nov. 15) at Dover Downs, tag-teaming in deep stretch to nose out Jimmy Freight in a 1:49.1 dead heat. While Jimmy Freight and local favorite Lather Up tasted defeat in their Matron split, divisional standouts Six Pack and Youaremycandygirl refused to disappoint in their respective events. $210,150 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trot (race four) In a meeting of the millionaires, dual classic winner Six Pack ($3.00) made easy work of the first-over Met’s Hall en route to a 1:54.1 score over sloppy going in his Matron Stakes division. Trainer-driver Åke Svanstedt sent the son of Muscle Mass to the front immediately from post five, and the pair floated clear of Fashionwoodchopper (Yannick Gingras) midway on the first turn before rating early splits of :28.1 and :57.3. Up the backstretch, Met’s Hall (Andy Miller) sustained a first-over ascent out of third to within half a length of the lead, but Six Pack shrugged off his rival under minimal hand urging through the final turn. With Met’s Hall no longer a threat past three-quarters in 1:26, Six Pack accelerated away from Fashionwoodchopper to take his 15th career win by four lengths. Mississippi Storm (Andy McCarthy) saved ground after gapping cover to just collar the weakening Met’s Hall for third. Svanstedt co-owns Six Pack with Little E LLC, Stall Kalmar FF, and Lars Berg. $183,900 3-Year-Old Filly Trot (race six) Indiana standout Custom Cantab ($17.80) had something left in the stretch after winning a cutthroat first-quarter duel, as she was able to turn aside Plunge Blue Chip not once, but twice en route to a 1:53.1 Matron score. David Miller put the Mr Cantab filly in play from the outset, but the pair faced immediate resistance from Supergirl Riley (Tony Morgan) on approach to the first turn. After pressing in the two-path through a :26.4 first quarter, Custom Cantab accelerated to the fore with a circuit to go, but shortly thereafter faced pressure from the emerging Plunge Blue Chip (Åke Svanstedt) nearing a :55.2 half. Custom Cantab asserted up the backstretch, but had to dig in again a quarter from home to fend off the resurgent Plunge Blue Chip a second time on the final turn. Not only did she have enough to parry her outside rival, but she also kept a second push from Supergirl Riley — who emerged up the open stretch in the final sixteenth — a head short. Plunge Blue Chip’s third-place finish, 1-3/4 lengths behind, was enough to push her past the million-dollar mark in career earnings, while Breeders Crown winner Lily Stride (Tim Tetrick) failed to threaten from second-over and finished last. Trainer Chris Beaver co-owns 15-time winner Custom Cantab with Donald Robinson and RBH Ventures Inc. $159,350 3-Year-Old Filly Pace (race 10) Youaremycandygirl ($2.40) strode strongly to the front and never looked back, avenging Breeders Crown defeat to stablemate Percy Bluechip with a 1:51.3 win in their Matron event. Entering off a resounding 9-3/4 length win in the $113,000 USS Indy at Hoosier Park, Youaremycandygirl and driver Yannick Gingras out-sprinted Percy Bluechip (Matt Kakaley) and Solitary (Andy Miller) through a :27.2 first quarter before pulling the pace back. With a circuit to go, Dance Blue (Andy McCarthy) commenced a first-over bid from fifth and advanced steadily as the pace slackened through a :56.2 half. Up the backstretch, Youaremycandygirl’s lead was cut to a length and a quarter by Dance Blue, but was never in jeopardy. The daughter of American Ideal coasted through a :27.1 third quarter to evade Dance Blue and kept the pocket-sitting Percy Bluechip 1-1/4 lengths at bay in 1:51.3. Alexa’s Power (Tim Tetrick) chased evenly for third after being hemmed in until the top of the stretch. Ron Burke trains 18-time winner Youaremycandygirl for William Donovan. $193,750 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace (race 12) After Ontario standout Jimmy Freight was tasked with the heavy lifting through strenuous fractions and sternly dismissed the challenge of 4-5 local favorite Lather Up, This Is The Plan ($17.00, Tim Tetrick) and The Downtown Bus ($20.60, Corey Callahan) emerged in the final stride to simultaneously nose out Jimmy Freight in a dead heat in the glamour boys’ division of the Matron. Jimmy Freight and driver Scott Zeron let This Is The Plan clear before taking charge midway on the first turn and reeling off a :25.3 initial quarter. A determined advance from Lather Up (Montrell Teague) out of fourth with a circuit to go kept the pace hot through a :54.4 half, but Jimmy Freight remained undeterred with three-eighths to go and shrugged off that rival. Meanwhile, This Is The Plan remained close from the pocket and The Downtown Bus followed the three-wide cover of Breeders Crown winner Dorsoduro Hanover (Matt Kakaley) past three-quarters in 1:22.1. Turning for home, Dorsoduro Hanover stalled and Jimmy Freight was driven out to maintain a two-length lead, but it began to shrink in the final sixteenth. This Is The Plan lunged up the open stretch and The Downtown Bus surged widest of all, and they both reached the winning post simultaneously in 1:49.1, a nose better than Jimmy Freight. Ron Burke trains This Is The Plan, a six-time winner by Somebeachsomewhere, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Silva Purnel & Libby, and Larry Karr. Trainer Jeff Gillis co-owns 11-time winner The Downtown Bus with Ellen Ott. From the USTA Commincations Department

After driving Plunge Blue Chip to victory in her Breeders Crown elimination last weekend, and then watching rival Atlanta win hers, Ake Svanstedt seemed as intrigued as anyone by the possibilities in Saturday's $500,000 championship for 3-year-old female trotters at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. "She won easy," Svanstedt said about Plunge Blue Chip, then added with a smile, "but Atlanta won easy also. "We'll see how it goes in the final." All 12 Breeders Crown finals, with $6.4 million in total purses, will be raced Saturday at Pocono. Post time is 5:30 p.m. (EDT) for the first race. Svanstedt has top contenders in each the 3-year-old filly trot and $500,000 final for 3-year-old male trotters. Plunge Blue Chip is 4-1 on the morning line, the third choice behind 5-2 favorite Atlanta and 3-1 returning champion Manchego while colt Six Pack is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in his event. Plunge Blue Chip won her elimination by 3-1/4 lengths over Impinktoo in 1:53.3 over a sloppy rain-soaked track. The win came on the heels of her two-heat performance in the Kentucky Filly Futurity on Oct. 7, when she won her elimination in a world-record equaling 1:49.4 but went off stride in the same-day final, which was won by Atlanta. "She was dehydrated," Svanstedt said about the miscue. "But (Saturday) she was OK again, normal." Plunge Blue Chip has won eight of 14 races and $521,601 this year for Svanstedt, who owns the filly with breeder Blue Chip Bloodstock, Tomas Andersson, and Rick Zeron Stables. Rick Zeron co-owns, and trains, two other 3-year-old filly trot finalists in Atlanta and Courtney Hanover. Zeron will drive Courtney Hanover, a 20-1 shot, in the final while his son Scott will be behind Atlanta. Atlanta, who has won eight of 13 races this year including the Hambletonian Stakes against the boys and banked $902,278, captured her Breeders Crown elimination gate-to-wire by three-quarters of a length over Lily Stride in 1:53.1. "I was not surprised how easy I got away," Scott Zeron said. "I'm sure Yannick (Gingras with Manchego) was being a little conservative and at the same time I wanted to be conservative as well just to make sure my filly bounced back after the double heats in the (Filly) Futurity. I was able to command the lead early...and from there on when there was nobody power moving, I didn't think there would, I was able to control the race even more. "It worried me about bouncing back after the two heats because she didn't bounce back after the Hambletonian and it took her a little bit to get back into form. It's nice to see her come :27 on the end (Saturday)." Manchego finished third in her elimination, won by Atlanta. The Hambletonian Oaks champ has won seven of 13 races and $658,994 this year for trainer Jimmy Takter, driver Yannick Gingras, and owners Black Horse Racing, John Fielding, and Herb Liverman. In her start prior to the Crown elim, Manchego finished third in the first heat of the Kentucky Filly Futurity and was scratched from the final. "In her last start I was very concerned because she really didn't have any kick at all," Takter said. "Her blood work was (no good). Her blood work is on the way up and I needed this start in her. "Yannick said he had plenty of horse, but on this track here she had a little problem finding her gear really. They were going plenty, the last half in :55.2, so how are you going to make up ground? You don't make up ground on that. I've got a week to figure her out. But I was happy." Phaetosive, who topped Atlanta and Manchego in the Elegantimage Stakes, finished fourth in Atlanta's Breeders Crown elimination and is 5-1 on the morning line. The filly has won seven of 10 races and $564,764 this year for owner Purple Haze Stables. She has been driven throughout her career by trainer Trond Smedshammer, but George Brennan will be in the sulky Saturday. "I'm just trying to mix things up a little bit," Smedshammer said. "It's the last race of the year, so I figured it was time to try something. George is more aggressive than me (and) he is 40 to 45 pounds lighter than me, which I think could be a factor also on a muddy off-track. I think Atlanta is going to try to do the same thing this week that she did last week. That's what we've got to try to stop. "This track favors certain horses over others and I think Atlanta has a bit of an advantage because of her style of racing on that type of track. Hopefully she won't have it as easy this week as last week." On the colt side, Six Pack enters the Breeders Crown final with a five-race win streak including the Kentucky Futurity and Yonkers Trot. He won the Futurity final in 1:49.1, the fastest mile ever by a 3-year-old trotter. Six Pack has won 10 of 13 races and $970,573 this year for owners Svanstedt, Little E, Stall Kalmar FF, and Lars Berg. Six Pack won his Breeders Crown elimination by three-quarters of a length over returning champion Fiftydallarbill in 1:53.3. "He was good, but he is so lazy," Svanstedt said. "He slows down and takes it easy and I must push him. If I relax, he can feel everything, and he takes his chance to be lazy. He can also feel when I'm serious, and then he is a different horse. He is a smart horse. He is a nice horse." Tactical Landing, with Brian Sears driving for trainer Takter, won the other elimination by 4-3/4 lengths over Met's Hall in 1:52.2. He is the 3-1 second choice on the morning line. The colt has won seven of 12 races and $392,800 for owner The Tactical Landing Stable. "He's got a hell of a set of lungs and he covers a lot of ground," Takter said. "He's a fantastic horse." Canadian Trotting Classic winner Crystal Fashion is 4-1 and Fiftydallarbill is 5-1. For Saturday's complete entries, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the Breeders Crown  

CHESTER, PA - Over $190,000 in stakes purses were on the line as three-year-old fillies of both gaits each contested three division of John Simpson Sr. series stakes action on Wednesday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia. Trotters were first to the track on the Wednesday card, and the Lucky Chucky filly Lucky Ava was first to the finish line, posting splits of 27.3, 56.4, and 1:26.2 en route to a 1¾ length wire-to-wire victory in a lifetime best of 1:55.1. Trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt, straight off a monumental Sunday at Lexington which may be part of a Trainer of the Year title possibility, was in the sulky for Ake Svanstedt Inc., Little E LLC, and the Van Camp Trotting Corporation, whose trotter has now won $382,264. Driver Scott Zeron tucked the Chapter Seven filly Lima Novelty fourth early, then saw that become a 3-tuck as a rival broke, and was content to chase longshot Winbak Noelle, who set good fractions of 27.1 and 55.4. Lima Novelty moved down the backstretch, got to the lead by the 1:24.4 3/4s, then went on strongly through the stretch to have a 2½ length advantage at the end of a 1:54.1 mile. Linda Toscano trains the winner of $278,964 for owner Ken Jacobs. Zeron and Toscano came right back to take the final trot division with another daughter of Chapter Seven, Repentance, who crossed the wire 2 1/4 lengths to the good in 1:54.4. Once again first-over proved the winning route, as Hey Judy Judy, second choice to the victress, set fractions of 28.1, 57.2, and 1:26.1, but could not hold on against the winner the last 1/8 and faded. The winner, who lost a three-race win streak with an "untimely break" in her NYSS final (but what's "a timely break," anyway?), started a new winning streak while raising her bankroll to $247,327 for Diamond Creek Racing. On the sidewheeling side, Scuola Hanover looked the part of a 1-5 favorite, moving after a 26.2 opener to command, putting up middle numbers of 55.1 and 1:22.4, and then staying clear by 2¼ lengths at the end of a mile in a lifetime best of 1:50.4, which was only 3/5 of a second off Put On A Show's 2010 divisional standard for Philly. David Miller handled sulky chores behind the daughter of A Rocknroll Dance, who now has a bankroll of $207,298 for trainer Andrew Stafford, co-owner with Arthur Stafford and Thomas Ireland. The American Ideal filly Solitary, right back on the track after winning at Freehold on Saturday, was out most of a 25.4 quarter for driver Brett Miller before getting the lead in her section. Aldine Hanover, who forced that rough quarter, came back to take command and went middle splits of 54.4 and 1:22.4, with Solitary waiting in the two-hole and favored E Dees Well Said swinging wide into the lane. Through the stretch the battle was inside (Solitary) and outside (E Dees Well Said), with Solitary taking a neck decision while reducing her mark to 1:51.2. The winner went 17 starts in 2018 before getting to the winners circle, but now she has won three of her last four for trainer Nick Surick and the partnership of William Daggett Jr., Lawrence Vukovic, and the J L Benson Stables Inc. while raising her bank account to $199,097. In the final pacing cut, Alexis Faith got a tick closer to the local track record than did Scuola Hanover, as she lowered her mark to 1:50.3 while looking like a 1-20 shot should. Driver David Miller, taking two of the three pacing stakes divisions on the afternoon, kept her fourth in a five-horse field until the 5/8, then charged up raw and came a 54.2 back half with the filly to be 3¼ lengths clear on the money. Speaking of money, Alexis Faith gave both her sire American Ideal and her dam Cannae Cammie a new $500,000 credit as she pushed her earnings lifetime to $502,001 for trainer Casie Coleman and the ownership quartet of West Wins Stable, Jim Fielding, J. Robert Darrow, and Kevin McKinlay. From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

LEXINGTON, KY--The Ake Svanstedt-trained Muscle Hill mare Ice Attraction reeled into a fast pace late in the mile and slid clear of competition in progress to a 1:50.1 harness racing world-record victory in the $72,000 Libfeld & Katz Breeding Partnership Allerage Farms Mare Trot, sponsored by Al Libfeld & Marvin Katz, on Sunday, Oct. 7 at The Red Mile. Positioned sixth to the quarter, Ice Attraction sat off a :27.2 opening quarter set by Royal Witch asserting herself to the lead over Checkmate Time showing speed but settling into second. Broadway Donna, the 4-5 favorite, pulled from third entering the backstretch and circled to the top heading to a :55 half. Caprice Hill, from fourth, tipped first over heading into the far turn carrying Dream Baby Dream second over and Charmed Life third over. Dream Baby Dream broke stride, placing Charmed Life second over and Ice Attraction, shuffled to last in the pack, had room to angle third over. Caprice Hill and Broadway Donna drew away from the field to three-quarters as they matched strides in 1:23. Svanstedt fired Ice Attraction to the center of the track turning into the stretch. Caprice Hill continued to dig into Broadway Donna and inherited the lead midstretch when the favorite began to gallop. Ice Attraction continued to roll widest of all and swept to the front late in the mile to win. Caprice Hill held second from Charmed Life closing for third. Broadway Donna, finishing fourth, was disqualified to sixth for violating the breaking rule, placing Royal Witch fourth. "Last year [winning the Kentucky Filly Futurity] was a real shock. This year was just a nice suprirse," co-owner Jeff Gural said. "She's been racing good but she's had bad luck--she's just been shuffled too far back. And of course with a seven-horse race and a horse breaking that makes it a lot easier." Winning her second race in 13 starts this season and her 11th in 42 overall, Ice Attraction has accrued $613,500 for owners Ake Svanstedt, Douglas Sipple, Mal & Janet Burroughs and Little E LLC. She paid $22.80 to win. The 1:50.1 mile lowers the previous world record for four-year-old trotting mares on a mile track of 1:50.2 set by Ariana G at the Meadowlands this year. By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile          

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, September 11, 2018-Yonkers Trot winner Six Pack returned to the scene of his handiwork Tuesday night (Sept. 11th), dominating a division of Yonkers Raceway's $172,000 New York Sire Stakes Milt Taylor Trot for 3-year-old colts and geldings. Six Pack (Ake Svanstedt, $2.10) found himself parimutuelly partnered with Trot runner-up Helpisontheway (Jim Morrill Jr.) in the second ($86,750) statebred soiree. The pole-sitting latter stung Six Pack-from post position No 3-through a 27.1 opening quarter-mile. Six pack then rated a 30-second next subsection (:57.1 half), before finishing it off (1:25.4, 1:54.3). The widening margin, four lengths in and out of the final turn, cosmetically closed to a length-and-a-half at the tape. Helpisontheway barely held second, with I'm the Muscle (Jason Bartlett) third. The Veteran (Jordan Stratton) and Winning Shadow (Mike Simons) came away with the remainder. For Six Pack, a Muscle Mass colt co-owned by his trainer/driver, Little E LLC, Stall Kaimer and Lars Berg, it was his seventh win in 10 seasonal starts. The exacta (two wagering favorites) paid an even-money $7.50 and the triple returned $17. Superfecta wagering was not offered. Tuesday night's opening ($85,250) sire stakes event saw Perlucky (Trond Smedshammer, $32.20) roll pace-setting Clive Bigsby (Bartlett) from second-over. Away a bit tardy from post position No. 2, Perlucky watched as pole-sitting 'Clive' seated Purpose Blue Chip (Dan Daley) and Lindsey's Pride (Brent Holland) jumped it off. After early intervals of :28.1 and :58.1, Perlucky hitched a ride behind Don (Stratton) going toward a 1:26.4 three-quarters. Clive Bigsby owned a length-and-a-half lead into the lane, but Perlucky was poised. With minimal urging, he went by, winning by a length in a life-best 1:56.1. Clive Bigsby saved second over a needing-room Purpose Blue Chip, with 13-10 choice Cruising in Style (Morrill Jr.) a belated fourth. For sixth choice Perlucky, a son of Lucky Chucky trained by his driver for owner Purple Haze Stables, it was his second win in 10 '18 tries. The exacta paid $99, the triple returned $348 and the superfecta paid $1,209. Ironically, both of Perlucky's wins have come at odds of 15-1. New York Sire Stakes downstate prelims conclude-the 16th of 16 legs-with Friday night's (Sept. 14th) $156,200 Lew Barasch Trot for 2-year-old colts/geldings. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

While the heavily favored Ake Svanstedt stable harness racing entry was defeated in the first of the two New York Sire Stakes races at Saratoga Casino Hotel on Friday night, the second of the big stakes events went the way of Ake's stable star Plunge Blue Chip (Muscle Mass-Dunk The Donato-Donato Hanover). Plunge Blue Chip came to town fresh off her victory in the $129,014 Hudson Trot Final at Yonkers when she scored a 1:53.1 win for Svanstedt. On Friday night, she and entry-mate Natalie Hanover (Dan Dube) went off at odds of 1-9 and lived up to the hype. Plunge Blue Chip made an easy lead and cruised to victory in 1:55.3 in her $89,950 division of the NY Sire Stakes for three year old trotting fillies. Tribute To Seven (Wally Hennessey) closed sharply to finish second and breakup what would have been a one-two finish for the Svanstedt trainees as Natalie Hanover ended up settling for third on Friday. The win was the 14thin 20 career starts for Plunge Blue Chip who now has career earnings of more than $750,000 as her standout sophomore campaign continues. The $91,350 division of the NYSS on Friday went to Linda Toscano's Repentance (Chapter Seven-Swan Hot Mama-Donato Hanover). Svanstedt featured another coupled entry of talented fillies as Fury Road and Lucky Ava went off at odds of 1-2, but It was Jim Morrill Jr. and Repentance that would steal the show, going coast to coast with relative ease as the sophomore filly recorded her fifth win in ten seasonal starts. A Gift For You (Marcus Miller) closed quickly to finish second while stablemates Lucky Ava (Ake Svanstedt) and Fury Road (Dan Dube) had to settle for third and fourth, respectively. Repentance stopped the timer in 1:57 for the third win in her last four starts in New York Sire Stakes competition. Repentance went off at odds of 9-5. Live racing continues on Saturday night at Saratoga with a first post time of 6:45pm. by Mike Sardella, for Saratoga Raceway

Dream Together (Rick Zeron) will lead a field of seven in Leg Four of The Miss Versatility ($40,000) at Tioga Downs on Friday (September 7). The last time Dream Together (Muscle Hill) raced at Tioga Downs it was the Joie De Vie ($141,000). The race was promoted as the first matchup between trotting heavyweights,Hannelore Hanover and Ariana G. Owned by Determination and trained by Luc Blais, Dream Together charged late down the stretch and stole the show to win in 1:53.1. he 4-year-old mare is the 5-2 morning line favuld be the second morning line choice, the Ake Svanstedt trained Ice Attraction (Simon Allard) at 7-2. Owned by Little E LLC., Svanstedt, Douglass Sipple, Mal & Janet Burroughs, she won the third leg of the Miss Versatility at Tioga Downs (August 1). The 4-year-old mare by Muscle Hill has 10 career victories. The rest of the field includes Celebrity Ruth (Jim Meittinis) at 4-1, NF Happenstance (Jack Parker Jr.) at 9-2. Millionaire, Caprice Hill (Mike Simons) is the fifth morning line choice at 5-1. The two longshots are Pink Pistol (Aaron Byron) at 8-1 and The Erm (Charlie Norris) at 10-1. The 13 race card on Friday (September 7) starts at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com. by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Stay Hungry has now won two of the three jewels of harness racing’s Triple Crown for pacers and Six Pack won the Triple Crown jewel, the Yonkers Trot, to headline an actioned packed card at Yonkers Raceway. In the seventh race $500,000 Messenger Stakes for three-year-old pacers it was Babes Dig Me and driver George Brennan getting the early lead, but driver Doug McNair had Stay Hungry on the move and they took command by the opening quarter mile in :27.1. Coming around the second turn, driver Louis Philippe Roy came first-over from fourth place with Jimmy Freight and took off after Stay Hungry and that became a dogfight going to the half mile in :55.3 as McNair would not let Roy get by him. Those two continued their battle down the backstretch to the three-quarters in 1:23 and in the stretch Jimmy Freight tried but could not catch Stay Hungry who went on to win by a neck over Jimmy Freight in 1:52.1. Topville Olympian (Jim Morrill, Jr.) was third. It was the fourth win in ten starts for Stay Hungry, a son of Somebeachsomewhere, trained by Tony Alagna and owned by Bradly Grant of Milton, ON and the Estate of Irwin Samelman of Las Vegas, NV. He paid $7.80 to win. “The front end is usually not his forte,” Doug McNair said of Stay Hungry. “But he did it tonight. He’s very relaxed, you can drive him with two fingers. Tony (Alagna) does such a great job training him. “The last 16th we were both tired,” McNair said. “We had gone head and head for a half mile or so and in that last 16th my horse was lucky to hold on.” “It may not be his forte to go on the front end,” Alagna said. “But I knew he (Stay Hungry) could handle a half mile.  After he won the Cane Pace it was a no-brainer that we were going after the Triple Crown, that’s why we brought him here tonight. “Cat Manzi, who works for me,” Alagna explained,” brought him here a week before the eliminations and trained him so we had his gear set to go. He did a great job helping me get him ready.” Alagna said they would discuss whether to take Stay Hungry up north to Toronto for the Simcoe Stake next week or just give him a rest before going for the final jewel of the pacing triple crown, the Little Brown Jug in Delaware, Ohio on Thursday, September 20. Stay Hungry Stay Hungry Interview Six Pack easy winner in $500,000 Yonkers Trot Six Pack and trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt were able to score a seven and three-quarters length romp in capturing the 64th edition of the Yonkers Trot, the second leg of harness racing’s Trotting Triple Crown, Saturday at Yonkers Raceway. The purse was $500,000. It was Lindsey’s Pride and driver Marcus Miller who shot out to the early lead and parked out Six Pack and Svanstedt to the opening quarter mile in :28.4. Once on the lead, Six Pack was on cruise control for Svanstedt, holding the field at bay past the half mile in :58.1. Heading to the backstretch, Helpisontheway (Jim Morrill, Jr.) came first-over with Maxus (Mark MacDonald) second over. In the backstretch, Svanstedt opened up on the field with Six Pack at the three-quarters in 1:26.3 and they went on to win with ease in 1:54. Helpisontheway was second with Lindsey’s Pride third. The time of the race was the fastest Yonkers Trot ever at the track. It was the sixth win in nine starts this year for Six Pack, who paid just $2.50 to win. The son of Muscle Mass is co-owned by Ake Svanstedt with Little E LLC of NY, Stall Kalmar of Sweden and Lars Berg of DE. “The good horses (Six Pack) are good at age 2 and get better at age 3.” Svanstedt said. “The horse to beat was #1 (Helpisontheway). I was not worried about the horse in front of me early. “Now we (Six Pack) have two New York Sire Stakes to race in to make the final,” Svanstedt said. “Then we will supplement to the Kentucky Futurity at the Red Mile.” Six Pack World Record tied in $129,014 Hudson Filly Trot   The fourth race Hudson Filly Trot Final for three-year-old’s saw Plunge Blue Chip, the 1/5 betting favorite and trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt barely hold off Supergirl Riley (Marcus Miller) by a long nose in 1:53.1. The clocking was not only the all age track record at Yonkers, but it also tied the world record set in 2013 by Frau Blucher. The previous all age track record at Yonkers was set by Quick Deal at 1:53.2 in 2013. Svanstedt left quickly from post one with Plunge Blue Chip and held the field at bay through quarters of :27.3; :55.3 and 1:23.2 before Miller was able to catch up with Supergirl Riley in the two-hole. Supergirl Riley made it a horse race down the stretch but Plunge Blue Chip had just enough left to win it at the wire. Lucky Ave (Daniel Dube) was third. It was the fourth win in nine starts this year for Plunge Blue Chip, a daughter of Muscle Mass. She is co-owned by Svanstedt of Wrightowns, NJ, Blue Chip Bloodstock, NY, Tomas Anderson, Sweden and Rick Zeron of ON. She paid $2.50 to win. “She had been pulling too much the first half,” Svanstedt said. “So, we made some changes. She is very well gaited so that is why she does so well on smaller tracks. She is very good now.” Favorite wins $112,904 Lady Maud Pace The fifth race Lady Maud Final for three-year-old pacing fillies started out with Better Than Happy and driver Joe Bongiorno taking the early lead from the rail with 1/5 favorite Alexis Faith (Jim Morrill, Jr,) sitting right on their backs to the opening quarter mile in :27.4. They raced Indian-style to the half mile in :57.1 when Jewels Forreal and driver George Brennan started up first-over with Majorette Angie (Brian Sears) following second-over. Once in the backstretch, Morrill pulled from the pocket and barely got out in front of Jewels Forreal and Alexis Faith cleared to the lead past the three-quarters in 1:25.3. Opening up two lengths on the field, Alexis Faith and Morrill cruised to the wire, holding off a late charge by Solitary (Jim Marohn, Jr.) to win by a half length in 1:53.4. Jewels Forreal was third. Sired by American Ideal, Alexis Faith is trained by Casie Coleman and owned by the West Wins Stable and Jim Fielding of ON, J Robert Darrow of OH and Kevin McKinlay of ON. She paid $2.60 to win. By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink

YONKERS, NY, Monday, August 20, 2018-Yonkers Raceway's entry box Monday afternoon (Aug. 20th) offered up 3-year-olds-four colts and four geldings-for the 64th Yonkers Trot. The entry box also found 11 3-year-olds-eight colts and three-geldings-for Messenger Stakes No. 63. Thus, the second jewels of their respective Triple Crown find the Trot as a 'one-dash-for-the-cash' event, while the Messenger has a pair of $40,000 eliminations races this Saturday night (Aug. 25th). Alphabetically, here are the entrants for Yonkers Trot No. 64... Helpisontheway (s) Lindsey's Pride (g) Lindy's Big Bang (g) Maxus Mississippi Storm (g) Six Pack The Veteran Tito The Messenger's elims go as the fifth and sixth races Saturday night, having drawn as such... First elim-1-Babes Dig Me (Jordan Stratton), 2-Wild Bill (Ray Schnittker), 3-JK Wildfire (g, Stratton also listed), 4-Topville Olympian (g, Brian Sears), 5-Nutcracker Sweet (Stratton also listed). Second elim-1-Springsteen (Dave Miller), 2- Winston (g, Corey Callahan), 3-Decoy (Mark MacDonald), 4-Jimmy Freight (s, Louis-Philippe Roy), 5-Stay Hungry (Doug McNair), 6-Kwik Talkin' (Stratton). Note 'g' signifies gelding, while 's' is a $30,000 supplemental entrant. Both finals--$500,000 each-are scheduled for a week from Saturday night, Sept. 1st. They are accompanied by the companion events, the $129,014 Hudson Filly Trot (six entrants) and the $112,904 Lady Maud Pace (eight entrants). By Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The night before the 93rd Hambletonian it was bombs away at the Meadowlands Friday, as a track that had seen 29 favorites score in its previous 60 races (48 percent) became the land of long shots. Five times on the 12-race harness racing card the winner's odds were 16-1 or higher, and even though the 50-Cent Pick-5 saw a 2-5 shot win leg four, the payout was still a hefty $12,016.25. The non-chalk parade began in the opening race when amateur driver Roberto Michelotto guided Cheeky Little Minx ($48.60) to victory in an event for Hambletonian Amateur Drivers. The second amateur drivers race saw Jennifer Lappe guide Fox Valley Steffen ($69.80) to victory lane in race five. Ake Svanstedt, who has a big chance to win both the Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks Saturday, took race seven with Can't Afford It ($35.80) before Sprinter N ($69.80) rocked the clock to the tune of 1:48.3 in the eighth. The ninth race saw Steve Smith score with Atlas Alliance N ($49.60) to complete a Pick-3 that returned a whopping $6,797.00, while the 50-Cent Pick-4 (races eight through 11) came back $6,128.50 - despite being anchored by 3-1 and 3-5 winners - given the big prices that started the sequence in the eighth and ninth. A LITTLE MORE: Brett Miller, Andy Miller and Andy McCarthy all recorded driving doubles. ... All-source handle totaled $2,332,354. HAMBO DAY! The 93rd edition of the Hambletonian is the centerpiece for Saturday's 16-race, stakes-laden card at the Big M. Doors open at 10 a.m. Post time for the first race is noon. Post time for the Hambletonian is 5:14 p.m. If you can't make it to the track, the Hambo can be seen live on the CBS Sports Network. The 90-minute broadcast begins at 4 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

Six Pack has a tendency to keep Ake Svanstedt guessing. The colt, who is the 2-1 morning-line favorite in the second of Saturday's two Hambletonian eliminations at The Meadowlands Racetrack, tends to get lazy when in the lead, waiting for other horses to join him. And that can lead to anxious moments for Svanstedt, who trains and drives the horse. "You never know if he's tired, or if he's lazy," Svanstedt said. "Sometimes he feels tired, but he's not tired. He's just waiting for someone and you get afraid. I always have that feeling in the stretch with him. Then someone comes and he picks it up again. But how should I know that? You don't know until it happens." Six Pack heads to the Hambletonian, the sport's premier event for 3-year-old trotters, with eight wins in his past nine races dating to last September. His only setback was a second-place finish to Crystal Fashion in the final of the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial, which was only the third time in his career he was passed in the stretch when holding the lead. For his career, Six Pack has won nine of 14 races and earned $557,840 for owners Ake Svanstedt Inc., Jeff Gural's Little E LLC, Tomas Olofsson's Stall Kalmar FF, and Lars Berg. The colt enters the Hambletonian off a 1:50 win in his division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial on July 14 at the Meadowlands. The time is the fastest ever by a 3-year-old male trotter. He will start his Hambletonian elimination from post No. 9 in a nine-horse field. "He has raced better and better for every race this year," Svanstedt said. "He is going up the whole time. He's an all-around horse. The good horses are all around. He's nice to handle and nice gaited and can leave fast. I think he can go faster (than 1:50). He was not tired the last time. He was just lazy, so I must push him." The stakes-filled Hambletonian Day card begins at 12 noon. The Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks will be featured on a live 90-minute broadcast on CBS Sports Network from 4-5:30 p.m. (EDT). Wolfgang, from the stable of four-time Hambletonian-winning trainer Jimmy Takter, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in the first Hambletonian elimination, which also includes the lone female in the race, Atlanta. The filly, trained by Rick Zeron, is 3-1. She is attempting to become the first filly to win the Hambletonian since Continentalvictory in 1996. The top-five finishers from each $100,000 elimination return for the $1 million final later Saturday afternoon. Starting from post nine with Six Pack is similar to Svanstedt's situation in 2017 when Perfect Spirit left from post 10 in his elimination. Svanstedt got away fourth after a three-wide push on the first turn. He made a first-over move at the half, took the lead briefly in the stretch and finished third to advance to the final. His drive was inspired by a conversation with Hall of Fame driver John Campbell. "I left fast with (Perfect Spirit)," Svanstedt said. "John Campbell said one thing. He said they don't race the Hambletonian tomorrow, and not next week, the Hambletonian is today. You have to leave and give him a chance. I did that." Six Pack is a son of Muscle Mass out of Pleasing Lady. He was purchased for $30,000 at the 2016 Lexington Selected Sale. Svanstedt's familiarity with Six Pack's family goes back to Merger Blue Chip, who was out of Six Pack's third dam, Caviar Please, and was raced by former Svanstedt assistant Bjorn "Bernie" Noren before being sent to Europe. Svanstedt raced Six Pack's half-brother Limerence. "We have a very good mare in Sweden, Merger Blue Chip," Svanstedt said. "We bought her here and she raced here for Bernie. Then we took her to Sweden and she was one of the best mares when she was a 5-year-old. Then we bought Limerence. I looked at the pedigree and saw it was the same family as Merger Blue Chip. Limerence was an OK horse. "That's how I found Six Pack because he was a half-brother to Limerence. And Six Pack was a good-looking horse. He is a good-looking horse. He has very good conformation." Svanstedt won the 2017 Hambletonian with Perfect Spirit, who was elevated from second to first when What The Hill was disqualified for interference in the stretch. He is not thinking of winning a second trophy. "It's a big thing, of course, but you can never say something before (the race)," Svanstedt said. "You must race and see what happens. But I have a good horse and I'm happy that I have such a good horse. That is the first step. I don't think the heat racing will bother him. He is big and strong so he should be OK." * * * * * * * Alarm Detector, the 2017 O'Brien Award winner for Canada's best 2-year-old male trotter, is in the same elimination as Six Pack, where he will start from post No. 4 with driver Trevor Henry. Trainer Ben Baillargeon, who is making his Hambletonian debut, hoped his colt would have five starts this year heading into the race, but will enter with four because Alarm Detector made an uncharacteristic break in his elimination of the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial and failed to advance to the final. Since then, Alarm Detector finished third in his division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial, which was Six Pack's world-record mile, and won a qualifier in 1:54 at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Earlier this year, in June, he finished third in the Goodtimes Stakes, but after the race was discovered to be sick. "I thought he raced tremendous (in the Dancer)," Baillargeon said. "It was a very costly first quarter (:26.2) for a trotter at the Meadowlands. He was parked three deep and two deep the first quarter (before getting the lead). They went very big fractions and he raced real good. I have no complaints about the horse. "I just qualified him in (1):54 on Friday. We had a very big headwind down the lane and Trevor just let him roll the third quarter in :26.4. He did it pretty much under wraps. He's going into the race in great shape. He's as best as he's been all year. He's trotting perfect. All we need is a little luck. That day everything has to be perfect. If everything is perfect for us, we'll be right there at the wire. If not, well, some other time." As for the break at Pocono, the trainer said, "For some reason he got on the right line in the second turn and just dove right in, tried to cut the corner too quick. Trevor had to grab him or he was going to knock somebody down. They all have their bad days at one time or another. We have to forget about it and move on." Alarm Detector won all but one of his seven races last year, capping his abbreviated campaign with a victory in the William Wellwood Memorial. He did not race again in 2017 because of a bruise on the right hind cannon bone. He was given four months to recover. The colt is a son of Chapter Seven out of Final Countdown. His family includes Dan Patch and O'Brien awards-winner Ken Warkentin, who was named in honor of the Meadowlands Racetrack announcer and voice of the Hambletonian, as well as stakes-winner Holiday Road. Alarm Detector was purchased for $110,000 and is owned by Thomas Rankin, Elizabeth Rankin, Claude Hamel, and Santo Vena. "I was in Harrisburg (for the Standardbred Horse Sale) with Santo Vena," Baillargeon said. "(Agent) Brian Montgomery said I should take a look at this horse. We took a look at him and we just fell in love. He was strong and built for the hard work. I liked the breeding page, you can't ask for anything better. There is enough pedigree in him. I said I have to bring him home. He's turned out to be a nice horse." * * * * * * * Expect trainer Dewayne Minor to be watching the weather reports leading up to Saturday's Hambletonian. Why? His Shoshie Deo, the New Jersey Sire Stakes champion, is fond of dry conditions. His most recent two races were on a sloppy track and he finished no better than fourth in either. "The last two performances, you really can't tell much because he raced in the rain and he really doesn't like the rain," Minor said. "So that didn't give us a real true indication of going in here, but with his attitude, he's got such a positive attitude, we'll give it a try. We're just hoping for a good track and that it doesn't rain on us and maybe we can do some good here." Shoshie Deo is a son of Wishing Stone out of Fortune Dream. Minor also trained Wishing Stone, who finished third in the 2010 Hambletonian with George Brennan in the sulky. Brennan will drive Shoshie Deo, who has won seven of 17 career races and earned $151,040 for owner Annemette Minor. "He's got a big sweeping gait like a French horse," Minor said. "He's out of a French mare and he's got the gait like them. If he can use his gait the right way and get good live cover in here he'll be close. We're just hoping for the best. "He's paid his way. He's made enough to go in, win, lose or draw." Following are the fields for the Hambletonian eliminations. Hambletonian Elimination One PP-Driver -Trainer-Morning Line 1-Shoshie Deo-George Brennan-Dewayne Minor-10/1 2-Evaluate-Orjan Kihlstrom-Marcus Melander-15/1 3-Met's Hall-Andy Miller-Julie Miller-10/1 4-Lawmaker-David Miller-Andrew Harris-8/1 5-Wolfgang-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/2 6-Crystal Fashion-Tim Tetrick-Jim Campbell-7/2 7-Atlanta-Scott Zeron-Rick Zeron-3/1 8-Hat Trick Habit-Andy Miller-Scott DiDomenico-12/1 9-Zephyr Kronos-Jimmy Takter-Jimmy Takter-10/1 Hambletonian Elimination Two PP-Driver -Trainer-Morning Line 1-Fashionwoodchopper-David Miller-Jim Campbell-10/1 2-Patent Leather-David Miller-Jim Campbell-15/1 3-Classichap-Trond Smedshammer-Trond Smedshammer-6/1 4-Alarm Detector-Trevor Henry-Benoit Baillargeon-10/1 5-Fourth Dimension-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-10/1 6-Southwind Chrome-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-5/1 7-Tactical Landing-Jimmy Takter-Jimmy Takter-4/1 8-You Know You Do-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-8/1 9-Six Pack-Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt-2/1  by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA   

East Rutherford, NJ --- Eighteen 3-year-old trotters entered Saturday's 93rd Hambletonian Stakes at the Meadowlands Racetrack, requiring two eliminations to trim the field to 10 for the $1 million final later that afternoon. Wolfgang is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in the first elimination and Six Pack is the 2-1 favorite in the second. Atlanta, the lone filly taking on the boys, is the 3-1 second choice in the first elimination. The draws for the Hambletonian and companion Hambletonian Oaks, which is restricted to 3-year-old female trotters, were held Tuesday at the Meadowlands. Wolfgang drew post No. 5 in his elimination and Six Pack drew post No. 9. Atlanta will start from post No. 7. The top-five finishers from each $100,000 elimination return for the final. Manchego, who won one of last Saturday's two eliminations for the Hambletonian Oaks, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in the $500,000 final. Phaetosive, the other elimination winner, is the 3-1 second choice. As elimination winners, Manchego and Phaetosive drew for spots in posts one through five, with Manchego getting post four and Phaetosive getting post five. The stakes-filled Hambletonian Day card begins at noon. The Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks will be featured on a live 90-minute broadcast on CBS Sports Network from 4-5:30 p.m. (EDT). Atlanta is attempting to become the first filly to win the Hambletonian since Continentalvictory in 1996. In the previous 92 years, 161 fillies entered the race, with 13 winning the sport's most prestigious event for 3-year-old trotters. Atlanta is the 22nd filly to enter the race since the start of the Hambletonian Oaks in 1971. The two most recent fillies to enter the Hambletonian, Pampered Princess in 2007 and Mission Brief in 2015, both won eliminations. Pampered Princess was seventh-placed-sixth in her final, won by Donato Hanover, and Mission Brief finished second to Pinkman in her final. Atlanta is undefeated in five races this year. She trotted the fastest mile in the history of Vernon Downs, 1:50.3, in winning the Empire Breeders Classic for 3-year-old filly trotters on May 28 and heads to the Hambletonian off a 1:53.4 victory at Vernon Downs in a July 19 division of the New York Sire Stakes. For her career, Atlanta has won nine of 15 races and $301,645. "I have a horse that I think can win the Hambletonian, that's exciting in itself, just having a player," said Scott Zeron, who will drive Atlanta for his father, trainer Rick Zeron. "(The draw) was fine by me. My dad wanted to be in the first heat, so we got lucky with that. We drew the seven; it's not the rail, but it's not too bad. I don't mind it. We'll make it work. It will give me the option to kind of look over and see what everyone is doing. We'll play it by ear." Rick Zeron co-owns Atlanta, by Chapter Seven out of Hemi Blue Chip, with Michelle and Al Crawford's Crawford Farms, William Holland's Holland Racing Stable, Howard Taylor, and Brad Grant. Scott Zeron captured the 2016 Hambletonian with eventual Trotting Triple Crown winner Marion Marauder. "For me, this is a different scenario, having the family horse," Zeron said. "I was in Florida all winter long with all the horses, so this one feels a little different having my father involved and being more involved with the barn. (Atlanta) is a super horse and I really hope she can deliver. I have no regrets about the decision." Zeron's win with Marion Marauder was for trainer Paula Wellwood, who will send out Southwind Chrome in Saturday's second Hambletonian elimination. Zeron is listed to drive that horse as well. "I have two competitive horses," Zeron said. "One is 3-1 and the other is 5-1. That's nice." Wolfgang is undefeated in three races this year, with his victories including the Goodtimes Stakes and a division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial. He has won six of 13 lifetime starts and $516,690 for Charles Goodwin's Brixton Medical Inc., Goran Falk, Bud Hatfield's Hatfield Stables, and Art Zubrod's and Leah Cheverie's Fair Island Farm. Four-time Hambletonian winner Jimmy Takter trains Wolfgang, who is one of four horses Takter is sending into the race. The others are You Know You Do, Tactical Landing, and Zephyr Kronos. With a win, Takter would tie Billy Haughton, Stanley Dancer, and Ben White for the most victories in Hambletonian history. Yannick Gingras drives Wolfgang. "He's very good," Takter said. "I trained him a (1):56 mile here last Friday with a good last half and he felt awesome. You try to peak them as best you can. He's been very good every start. He's so professional. He's most likely the most reliable horse I have in the Hambletonian this year." Six Pack is the fastest 3-year-old male trotter in history thanks to his 1:50 win in a division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial on July 14 at the Meadowlands. He has won five of six races this year, with his lone setback a second-place finish to Crystal Fashion in the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial. For his career, Six Pack has won nine of 14 races and $557,840. Ake Svanstedt trains and drives Six Pack. Svanstedt won the 2017 Hambletonian with Perfect Spirit, who was elevated from second to first when What The Hill was disqualified for interference in the stretch. Six Pack, by Muscle Mass out of Pleasing Lady, is owned by Ake Svanstedt Inc., Jeff Gural's Little E LLC, Tomas Olofsson's Stall Kalmar FF, and Lars Berg. "He has raced better and better for every race this year," Svanstedt said. "He is going up the whole time. He's an all-around horse. He's nice to handle and nice gaited and can leave fast. I think he can go faster (than 1:50). He was not tired the last time. He was just lazy, so I must push him." Another highly regarded contender is Crystal Fashion, who is 7-2 in the first elimination. He has won five of eight races this year and finished second in the remaining three. For his career, the son of Cantab Hall out of Window Willow has won nine of 20 races and $523,252. He is trained by Jim Campbell, who won the 1995 Hambletonian with Tagliabue, for owner Jules Siegel's Fashion Farms. Siegel was inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame on July 1, the day after Crystal Fashion's win in the Beal. In the Hambletonian Oaks, Takter and Gingras team up with favorite Manchego as they attempt to win the race for the fifth consecutive year. Takter holds the record for Oaks wins with seven. Manchego has won 16 of 18 career races and $986,170 for owners Barry Guariglia's Black Horse Racing, John Fielding, and Herb Liverman. Phaetosive, trained and driven by Trond Smedshammer, has won seven of 11 career races and $377,358. Smedshammer trained 2008 Hambletonian Oaks winner Creamy Mimi and was the trainer and driver of 2004 Hambletonian winner Windsong's Legacy. Phaetosive is owned by Wanda Polisseni's Purple Haze Stables. Following are the fields for the Hambletonian eliminations and the Hambletonian Oaks final. Hambletonian Elimination 1 PP-Driver -Trainer-Morning Line 1-Shoshie Deo-George Brennan-Dewayne Minor-10/1 2-Evaluate-Orjan Kihlstrom-Marcus Melander-15/1 3-Met's Hall-Andy Miller-Julie Miller-10/1 4-Lawmaker-David Miller-Andrew Harris-8/1 5-Wolfgang-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/2 6-Crystal Fashion-Tim Tetrick-Jim Campbell-7/2 7-Atlanta-Scott Zeron-Rick Zeron-3/1 8-Hat Trick Habit-Andy Miller-Scott DiDomenico-12/1 9-Zephyr Kronos-Jimmy Takter-Jimmy Takter-10/1 Hambletonian Elimination 2 PP-Driver -Trainer-Morning Line 1-Fashionwoodchopper-David Miller-Jim Campbell-10/1 2-Patent Leather-David Miller-Jim Campbell-15/1 3-Classichap-Trond Smedshammer-Trond Smedshammer-6/1 4-Alarm Detector-Trevor Henry-Benoit Baillargeon-10/1 5-Fourth Dimension-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-10/1 6-Southwind Chrome-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-5/1 7-Tactical Landing-Jimmy Takter-Jimmy Takter-4/1 8-You Know You Do-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-8/1 9-Six Pack-Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt-2/1 Hambletonian Oaks Final PP-Driver -Trainer-Morning Line 1-Plunge Blue Chip-Ake Svanstedt-Ake Svanstedt-4/1 2-What A Knockout-David Miller-Marcus Melander-20/1 3-Seviyorum-Andy Miller-Julie Miller-15/1 4-Manchego-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/2 5-Phaetosive-Trond Smedshammer-Trond Smedshammer-3/1 6-Hey Blondie-Andy McCarthy-Chuck Sylvester-6/1 7-Live Laugh Love-David Miller-R. Nifty Norman-8/1 8-Lily Stride-Tim Tetrick-Mark Harder-10/1 9-Blonde Magic-Tom Durand-Tom Durand-20/1 10-Nixie Volo-Corey Callahan-John Butenschoen-20/1 by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

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