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Northern Dali (Corey Braden) is victorious in fillies and mares featured pace ($9,000) at Tioga Downs on Friday (August 24). Milky Way Rae (Aaron Byron) went to the front and carved out all the early fractions (:27.1, :57.0, 1:24.4) Northern Dali ($12.40) who is owned by JP Houle Stables and trained by Gaston Lareau, took the lead in mid-stretch and held off a late charge by second place finisher Oneida Blue Chip (Mike Simons), to win in 1:53.2. A Wish For Wings (Fern Paquet Jr.) got third money. Northern Dali is a 6-year-old mare by Dali. It was her seventh win this season. She now owns 37 career victories Andy Santeramo won four races on the night. He got his wins with Talkoholic ($4.10), Court's N Session $7.60), Metro Glide ($7.30), and Lugar ($46.60). The driver wins title remains wide open. Jim Taggart Jr. now leads with 51 wins. Mike Merton, Jim Meittinis, and Aaron Byron are all tied for second with 49 victories. Santeramo finds himself in fifth with 44 wins. Live racing returns to Tioga Downs on Saturday (August 25) with a 12 race card starting at 6:15. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

BJ Lorado (Andy Santeramo) took the featured trot ($9,000) at Tioga Downs on Saturday (August 18). BJ Lorado ($9.90) went to the front and led to a first quarter of :28.0 and the half of :57.2. Freddie Mac (Mike Merton) would go first over and claim the lead at the three-quarter mark of 1:25.4. The two horses would then battle their way around the final turn together. BJ Lorado would dig down deep and re-claim the lead in the stretch to win in 1:55.0. Rose Run Rudi (Aaron Byron) came up to finish second. Freddie Mac settled for third. BJ Lorado is a 4-year-old gelding by Bo W. It was his sixth win of the season and it was career victory number 10. Trained by Marc Major for two of the the nicest owners you would ever want to meet in Diane and Michael Norcross. The lovely couple can be seen here almost every night at the finish line rooting their horses on. Mike Merton and Jim Taggart Jr. each won three races on the night. Merton got his wins with Gifted George ($6.30), Vicki All ($9.50), and Mr Carrotts ($6.10). Taggart Jr, won with Pinstripe Pride ($13.80), Celebrity Lover ($15.80), and Master Of Puppets ($5.30). Uriel (Annie Stoebe) wins the Billings Amateur race ($6,000). Uriel ($13.80) charged to the front and went gate-to-wire (:28.1, :59.3, 1:27.3, 1:56.4). Owned and trained by Stoebe, he had to hold off the late rush of second place finisher Celebrity Bluechip (Jennifer Lappe). Connie Keeper (Bob Davis) was third best. Uriel is a 7-year-old gelding by Explosive Matter. It was his fourth win this season and career victory number 27. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Sunday (August 19) with their biggest card of the year. Sunday will feature Empires Breeders Classic (EBC) final for 3-year-old pacing fillies ($270,425) and the EBC Classic Final for 3-year-old colts and geldings ($272,025). Also on the card is the Roll WIth Joe Open Pace ($143,000) and the Artiscape Open Mares Pace ($161,000). As well as 2 divisions of the Ms Versatility for Open Mares trotters (leg 3). The 13 race card starts at 1 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Dee's Rocketman (Andy Santeramo) takes the Open Pace ($11,000) at Tioga Downs on Sunday (August 5). Dee's Rocketman ($9.70) went right to the front and hit the first quarter in :28.3. Dreams Beachboy (Gates Brunet) took over as they went by the stands the first time. He led to the half in :56.4 and three-quarters in 1:23.1. Dee's Rocketman was patient in the loose pocket. Owned by Joe Martinelli Sr. and trained by Mickey Mc Nichol, he flew down the stretch to win in 1:50.4, equaling his lifetime best. Dreams Beachboy held for second with Dash Of Danger (Corey Braden) getting third money. Dee's Rocketman is a 6-year-old ridgling by Rock N Roll Heaven. It was his 10th win this season and career victory number 21. Trainer Mike Deters wins four races on the day Deters got three wins with driver Jim Meittinis, Ideal Feeling ($3.60), Doo Wop Hanover ($6.00), and Winyard Hanover ($4.20). His fourth win was with Hurricane Howard ($25.00) and driver Mike Merton. The drivers win title continues to be wide open. Jim Meittinis leads all driver with 44 wins this season. Mike Merton is second with 42 wins. Aaron Byron is third with 40 wins. Jim Taggart Jr. is fourth with 39 wins. Andy Santeramo occupies the fifth spot with 33 wins. Gary Messenger leads all trainers with 28 wins so far this season. His top rival is defending champion Mike Deters with 26 victories. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (August 10) featuring the Tompkins Geers racing series for freshman trotters and pacers. Post time is 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Dee's Rocketman (Andy Santeramo) won the Sunday matinee (July 8) Open Pace ($11,000) at Tioga Downs. Chumlee A (Larry Staubaum) covered all the early fractions (:27.1, :55.3, 1:23.3) Dee's Rocketman ($18.40) went first over resembling his name, looking like a rocket in the stretch. Owned by Joe Martinelli Sr. and trained by Mickey McNichol, he won in 1:52.0. Owosso Flash (Fern Paquet Jr.) charged late to get second money. Time Out I'm Tired (Aaron Byron) was third. Dee's Rocketman is a 6-year-old ridgling by Rock N Roll Heaven. It was his ninth win in 2018 and his 20th career victory. Bruce Clark gets a double double with training and driving wins with Niall Hanover ($9.20) and Heartbeat Hill ($3.00). Jim Taggart Jr. had a driving double with Bettorsluckystreak ($17.20) and Tarport Andy ($15.80) The driving title for 2018 continues to be wide open. Jim Meittinis and Aaron Byron are tied for the lead with 31 wins each. Mike Merton and Jim Taggart Jr. are tied for third with 29 tallies. Andy Sateramo is fifth with 20 wins. Gary Messenger continues to lead trainers in wins. He has won 22 races so far. Mike Deters is second with 18 victories. Joe Skowyra (13), Bruce Clarke (12) and Mark Major (10) round out the top five. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (July 13) starting at 6:10 p.m. For more information got to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Pompano Beach, FL...April 3, 2018...Galarina, patiently driven by Andy Santeramo, took top honors in Pompano Park's $13,200 Open pacing feature for harness racing mares on Monday night, slipping through along the pylons late to score in 1:53. The seven year-old daughter of Dali pinned a defeat measuring a half-length on the pacesetting Freakonomica, handled by Jim Meittinis, with Roll With Faith, teamed up with Dave Ingraham, next, 1 1/4 lengths away. Strings finished fourth while Bring Me Diamonds picked up the nickel in the classy sextet. As the wings folded, Freakonomics, leaving from the outside, was on the engine along with Galarina, post five, with the former taking charge into the initial turn and the latter settling in the garden spot. Through an opener of :27.1, Meittinis was in the process of rating his charge when Dave Ingraham sent Roll With Faith up to challenge half way through in :57. On the backside, Freakonomics and Roll With Faith were in a war with Santeramo sitting chilly along the inside with Galarina, hoping for a seam once they completed three-quarters in a picked up 1:25.1. Once they straightened away, that seam--though small--opened up and Santeramo pinched on through with Galarina to hit the wire in 1:53--her official last quarter :27.3. In a post race interview, Santeramo related, "Galarina has such a great attitude. You know, mares can be a little, shall we say, unpredictable at times but she's got such a great attitude. She doesn't get rattled at anything and, when she goes behind the starting gate, she's all business. "I wasn't really sure that she could beat the caliber of mare that Freakonomics is but she probably needed a start to tighten up, so I think we were fortunate in that respect. Both of our mares sure raced good, though." Galarina earned her ninth win of the year on Monday night--tied for most in North America with Regil Tiger--in 13 starts with her earnings ballooning to $48,826, more than $10,000 more than her entire 2017 total in 40 starts. Since her claim for $8,000 last November 6, Galarina has won 13 times and banked $63,923 for the M T Pockets Stables. As for Santeramo, he is the second leading percentage driver at Pompano Park--winning at a 24% clip--and, as of this date, the leading UTRS trainer in North America this year with a "batting average" of .581. In the "better for the bettor" department, Pompano Park's Super Hi-5 was solved on Monday night with one 20 cent ticket having the 6-2-10-5-3 combination worth $17,338.12. Racing continues on Tuesday night with a "million dollar" field assembled in an "Over-The-Hill Gang" trot, as well as special five-eighths mile dash featuring world record holder Sooo Handsome, who will be facing Foundonabeach, Thundercrest and William Star, among others, all winners at the distance. Post time is set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park      

Pompano Beach, FL...March 20, 2018...Galarina, getting "picture" perfect handling by Andy Santeramo, poked her nose in front right at the wire in taking top harness racing honors in Pompano Park's $15,000 pacing feature for mares on Monday night, stopping the timer in 1:52.3. The seven year-old daughter of "Dali" eked by All Charged Up, driven by John MacDonald, right on the wire after a garden trip, which included her final half in :54.4. Bring Me Diamonds, with Wally Hennessey in her sulky, finished third while Ubettorbeturlife finished fourth. Swinging Cami picked up the minor award in the classy sextet. At the outset, Galarina left with her usual alertness and quickly yielded to All Charged Up with the latter reaching the opening station in :27.3 before "lolly-gagging" through a well rated second panel of :30, reaching the half in :57.3. The pace noticeably quickened on the backside as All Charged Up looked to sprint away from her foes during a :26.4 third quarter, reaching that marker in 1:24.2. At the head of the lane, Santeramo left the coziness of the pocket and began gnawing away at the leader and just did get by the final stride. After the race, Santeramo said, "Well, to tell you the truth, I was very concerned at the half because you can't let a great mare (All Charged Up) like John's get away with a breather like that. I had my hands full keeping up on the backside and, when I tipped her, it was just a case of whether she could get there. Well, she did and I am very proud of her. (I) have to give her all the credit. All I did was give her the chance." Also trained by Santeramo for M T Pockets Stables, the ultra-consistent mare now has a 7-2-1 scorecard in 11 starts, good for $37,475. Lifetime, it was her 26th win with this one pushing her career bankroll to $161,026. As third choice in the betting at 4 to 1, Galarina paid $10.20 to win. Also on Monday night, the $18,000 Pop-Up final for pacers was contested at the lengthy distance of 1 1/4 miles and the Aussie bred Dynamite Dude, driven by Mike Simons, showed speed at both ends of the marathon to score by 1 1/2 lengths in 2:24. The 10 year-old gelded son of The Wrath of Pan pinned the defeat on yet another 10 year-old, Arsenal, driven by Dave Ingraham. F Twenty Two, handled by Wally Hennessey, finished third, just another neck away, while Surge Seelster and River Rising picked up minor awards in the rugged septet. Simons also trains the veteran and co-owns with Albert Abdala III. With only three starts under his girth this semester, Dynamite Dude won for the initial time this year sending his career bankroll to $214,701, with the $9,000 earned in this event the biggest of his career. Off as the fourth choice at 4 to 1, Dynamite Dude A returned a $10.40 mutual. The win was one of three for Simons--a consecutive triple, in fact--who also scored Dontcloseyoureyes ($17.00) and Amateur Hour ($3.40). Tuesday's program features World Record holder Sooo Handsome in a five-eighths mile "Dash-For-The-Cash." The five year-old gelded son of Cash Hall set his world record of 1:09 and looks for his second straight win against the likes of Legend Field, Prayer Session, Thundercrest, William Star, BJAnthony and Foundonabech. Pompano Park's Super Hi-5 carryover now stands at $38,448.53 and is offered as the finale on the 10 race program. Post time is 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park        

Pompano Beach, FL...March 12, 2018...Dee's Rocketman, smartly driven by Andy Santeramo, pulled off a 13 to 1 upset harness racing victory in the $30,000 final of the Fred Monteleone Memorial held at Pompano Park on Sunday night (March 11.)   The six year-old ridgeling son of Rock N Roll Heaven covered the extended distance in 2:21.3, pinning a defeat measuring 3 1/4 lengths on track record holder Panocchio, handled by Wally Hennessey. Doo Wop Hanover, with Tony Kerwood in the bike, finished third while Hollywood Sign A finished fourth. Drachan Hanover was fifth while earning the final award in the very classy octet.   The task appeared to be a steep one for Dee's Rocketman going in because, first, the draw put him in the outside post position in a field of stellar performers whose career bankrolls exceeded $3,000,000 and, second, Dee's Rocketman was the "poorest" one coming in with $143,997.   That didn't matter to the confident Santeramo, who came into the action as the second leading winning percentage driver at Pompano Park with 54 wins in 227 starts.   As he said prior to the race, "You never know, in this game, what is going to transpire on the track. When that gate opens, you have to make decisions and, with the outside post, my decision will depend on what the others do. I'm certainly not going to bang heads early with them in a longer race. So, we'll see what happens!"   From the opening bell, the action was swift as Rocky's Z Tam left alertly from the rail, Hollywood Sign was on the engine from post five and Uncomprmising Z Tam was eager leaving, as well, leaving favored Panocchio fourth--but not for long.   After an opening panel in :27.3, Panocchio went in search of the top spot and, after a half in :57.1, secured--again, but not for long.   The pace quickened on the backside as Hollywood Sign A went on a second speed binge, taking command past the third station in a picked up 1:24.4.   Through all of this, Santeramo played the waiting game early before catching live cover, first, third over, them second over around the final bend with the mile timed in 1:52.2.   Tipping three wide turning for home, Dee's Rocketman was in the highest of gears, mowing down his foes one-by-one and then drawing clear in the final stages.   After the race, Santeramo said, "Like I said, you never know what is going to happen on the track. They were all banging heads early, I caught live cover, the flow brought us into contention and, because Mickey (trainer McNichol) has this horse so sharp, he saved the best for last. When I tipped him, he responded and I thought to myself, 'it's all over.' That's how strong he felt when I tipped him. To beat a field like this is, well, it's unbelievable, because this was a very classy group."   For Dee's Rocketman, it was his sixth win in nine starts this year, good for $39,735. And, although he's still the "poorest" of his group in lifetime earnings--now at $158,997--he's the richest of the group this semester for owner Joseph Martinelli, Sr.   Off as fifth choice in the wagering, Dee's Rocketman paid $29.40 to win.   The $15,000 Open II, carded at the same distance of 1 1/4 miles, went to The Onlyest One, driven by Wally Hennessey, in 2:22.3.   American Hustle, teamed up with Bryce Fenn. was second, three-parts-of-a-length away, while Rebellious, driven by Scott Zeron, was next after a sweeping move from sixth to the lead during the mid-portion of the race. Dakota Jack and Bestinthebusiness earned the minors.   Racing continues on Monday night with the Super Hi-5 jackpot ballooning to $18,213.   Post time is set for 7:20 p.m.   by John Berry for Pompano Park      

Pompano Beach, FL...February 19, 2018...Dee's Rocketman, confidently driven by Andy Santeramo, took top harness racing honors in Pompano Park's $11,000 Open Pace on Sunday, pinning a 1:50.4 defeat on Hollywood Sign A handled by Matt Krueger, Sing For Me George, with Mickey McNichol in his bike, finished third while Pointsman and pacesetting Fritzie Pic Up Man were next in a very classy sextet. The six year-old son of Rock N Roll Heaven scored by a length-and-a-quarter after a first up backside bid grinding forward from third to take take command turning for home. It was Fritzie Pic Up Man who left with alacrity from his one post to clip off an opening panel in a hot :26.4 with the Aussie bred Hollywood Sign also on the engine off the wings to find a comfortable spot in the garden seat and Dee's Rocketman sitting chilly in third. With a half in :55, the pace began to heat up again on the backside as Santeramo sent Dee's Rocketman charging hard and engaging in war with the leader through an official third panel in :27-3--his :27 flat. Turning for home, Dee's Rocketman forged to the lead and never relented as his :28 final quarter sealed the deal. In a post race interview, Santeramo said, "I had a couple of wins with this horse recently and Mickey (trainer McNichol) asked me to handle him again since he had another one in there (Sing For Me George). I have to give Mickey a lot of credit because he had this horse ready to race. He's not afraid to take some air so the first up bid on the backside was not a concern to me at all. He's as game as they come and gives his all every start." When asked if the 1:50.4 mile was his fastest ever, Santeramo quipped, "Well, to tell you the truth, I don't really know because I don't keep track of that sort of thing. To tell you a lie, I think I had one go in (1):46 or (1):47 once!" Dee's Rocketman now has four wins in six starts this young season with earnings of $17,525 for owner Joseph Martinelli, Sr. Lifetime, Dee's Rocketman has won 15 times to go along with his brand new mark of 1:50.4 on this night. Off as second choice at 8 to 5, Dee's Rocketman paid $5.20 to win. In the $10,000 Open 2 Pace, The Onlyest One, driven by George Napolitano, Jr., won a hard fought duel with Lyons Johnny, driven by John MacDonald, to score in 1:51.1--his wire-to-wire margin 1 3/4 lengths off of sizzling splits of :26.4, :54.3 and 1:23. Dakota Jack, with Dave Ingraham driving, was third while American Hustle was next. Team Captain picked up the nickel in the sharp septet. The Onlyest One, a nine year-old gelded son of Bettor's Delight, sent his 2018 scorecard to 3-3-0 in six starts, good for $22,000. The win was a milestone of sorts as this was the 25th win of his career measuring 158 starts. Joe Pavia, Jr. trains the winner for John Whiting, MIchael Rich and Lawrence Chimerine, who now has lifetime bounty of $267,790. As second choice in the betting at 7 to 2, The Onlyest One paid $9.00 to win. Also on the Sunday card, driver Joe Sanzeri celebrated his birthday with one of Pompano Park's historical favorites, Northern Companion. Sanzeri found a seam turning for home and mowed his competitors down with a late surge to score in 1:54.1. It was the first win of the year for the 10 year-old altered son of Cambest and 52nd win lifetime--42 of which have been at Pompano Park. His lifetime earnings are now $337,038. Trained by Howard Klohr for the Delray Duo, Northern Companion, despite beginning from the rail, went off as the longest proposition on the board at 26 to 1 and paid $55.20 to his remaining faithful. Racing continues on Monday night with a very competitive card offering a Pick-6 holdover and a season high carryover in the Super Hi-5 vaulting to a season high $220,368. Post time is set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...June 27, 2015...Raji's Blue Line, handled by harness racing driver Andy Santeramo, dug in late to score a courageous win in Pompano Park's $9,000 Winner's Over feature pace on Saturday night (June 27). The seven year-old son of Artsplace, owned by Souren Hovsepian along with trainer Rod Lorenzo, had to survive four separate incidents during the mile before stopping the timer in 1:51.2. Abreathofreshart (Wally Ross, Jr.) was second in the mile while Northern Companion (Tom Sells) finished third. Who's Your Maddy and Histoire Eternelle were next in the sextet while Freeneasy Hanover was doomed at the start after a miscue leaving. When the gate sprung, Histoire Eternelle (Post 5) was on the engine along with Raji's Blue Line (Post 6) with the former battling the latter through a demanding opener of :26.3 before Raji's Blue Line took over a few strides later. That was the first incident. Incident number two was that there was not much of a let-up going to the half, with the mid-mile timed in a harsh :54.4 with Histoire Eternelle not in the garden spot...but not for long. Heading to turn three, Histoire Eternelle was out moving and putting the pressure on the leader past the third station in 1:23.1. In the lane, Raji's Blue Line put away the challenge of Histoire Eternelle but Abreathofreshart found some room in the lane to close in on the leader during the final stages of the mile--that was incident number four. But Raji's Blue Line was up to the task and responded with a :28.1 finale to hit the wire a half length to the good. In a post race interview, driver Andy Santeramo said, "They threw everything but the kitchen sink at him tonight but he just kept digging and digging all the way home. He was very brave tonight." In achieving his fourth win of the year in 22 starts, Raji's Blue Line sent his seasonal bounty to $41,166 and $215,866 lifetime to go along with a Pompano Park mark of 1:51. Pompano Park returns on October 4, 2015 with a 126 day meeting. Complete details of exact dates will be forthcoming in future press releases. by John Berry for Pompano Park

Artful Impulse and Count Speed reined supreme in their respective co-featured events at the harness racing meeting at Pompano Park on Wednesday night. Artful Impulse, off at 9 to 1 and patiently handled by Andy Santeramo, kicked things off in the $8,500 "Winners Over Handicap" for pacing mares by shocking the 1 to 20 favorite, Senorita Santanna, driven by Wally Hennessey, in 1:52.4. Winbak Heavenly, with Tom Sells in the bike, finished third while the only other starter in the event, Mach Me Not, finished fourth. Cheap N Easy was a late scratch in the opener, reducing the field to four. As the Hummer wings opened, Artful Impulse and Senorita Santanna left together and engaged in a duel for the first eighth before "Impulse" yielded to the "Senorita," the latter taking the field to an opening quarter in :26.4 with Winbak Heavenly content to stay in third and Mach Me Not already about five lengths away as the trailer. Positions remained stagnant through a half in :56.2 with Senorita Santanna picking up the pace a bit on the backside. reaching the third station in 1:24.4 and with a clear lead turning for home. Once they straightened away, Artful Impulse left the coziness of her pocket and began gnawing away at the leader, drawing on even terms a sixteenth out and edging to the lead near the wire--the winning margin a half length. In a post race interview, driver Andy Santeramo said, "Jimmy (trainer Mc Donald) said she had gate speed and I figured the only way I had a chance of upsetting Wally's (Hennessey) mare (Senorita Santanna) was to leave with mine and try to take a little sting out of her early. " "I thought Wally got away from us a little bit on the far turn but my mare responded very nicely when it counted. She must've come her last quarter under :28--(actually :27.4). Big mile." For Artful Impulse, a four year-old daughter of Artistic Fella owned by Twenty Four Carrot Racing, it was her third win of the year in 17 starts, good for $22,900 this semester. She's banked $113,145 lifetime. As third choice in the betting, Artful Impulse returned $20.20 to win. Count Speed never had an anxious moment as Wally Hennessey guided this six year-old Majestic Son gelding to a handy win--his fifth in a row--over stablemate Verdi, driven by Walter Ross, Jr., in 1:54.4 in the $8,500 "Winners Over" Handicap Trot. My Revenuer, with Tom Sells in the bike, used his typical late rally to finish third while Jailhouse Jessica finished fourth. Adenium picked up the nickel in the sextet. It was Count Speed flashing his usual alacrity as the gate sprung and, after a brief battle with Adenium, took command and led through opening panels of :28 and :57.3. Just short of that second marker, Jailhouse Jessica, fifth early on, began her sprint forward as did Verdi, away last in the early going but now following "Jessica's" live cover. With the pace beginning to pick up three-eighths out, Count Speed maintained a clear lead with Jailhouse Jessica a bit more than a length away, Adenium holding the third spot near the pylons and Verdi fanning widest of all through three-quarters in 1:26.2. In the lane, Hennessey sat confidently as Count Speed gave him a :28.2 sprint to the wire, stopping the clock in that aforementioned 1:54.4. After the race, Hennessey said, "this horse is very sharp right now...super sharp." "He just seems to do what he has to do to get to the wire first." "I was a little surprised to see his stablemate (Verdi) charging into second as he was stepping up to the big time for the first time." Both Count Speed and Verdi are trained by Dan Hennessey for owners Paul and Patricia O'Neil. Count Speed now owns a 5-0-1 scorecard in seven starts with earnings of $21,470. He's won 24 times during his career with a bankroll of $219,870. As the "talk of the tote-board" at 3 to 5, Count Speed returned $3.20 to his many faithful. Finally, in Wednesday's Super Hi-5, the 5-6-8-4-7 winning combo produced 22 winning 20 cent tickets pushing the carryover for Saturday night over $197,000. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Reported by John Berry for Pompano Park    

Pompano Beach, FL...May 24, 2014...The Isle Casino Racing Pompano Park concluded its 2013-2014 season on Saturday night with a strong 11 race program highlighted by a trio of feature events, including two late closing finals. The first feature was the $8,000 Late Closing Final of the Florida Amateur Driving Club Claiming Trot and that went, in an upset, to the 13 year-old warhorse Speedy Samadhi, driven by John Campagnuolo for owner trainer Earlon Eugley in 1:58.3.. Making his 248 lifetime start, Speedy Samadhi, the rugged son of Pine Chip, off at 14 to 1, somehow found a small seam of opportunity turning for home to slingshot widest of all in the lane to snare victory from Herecopmesthechief (Dein Spriggs) with Whispur (Leon Cable) third in this action packed event. Muscles To Spare recovered from an early miscue to finish fourth while Pacific Cyclone picked up the nickel in the octet. When the gate sprang open, Now Virginia and Roger Goldstein left alertly for the lead along with VT's Gold Key, handled by Maurice Brooks, Jr. with the latter assuming control at the opening marker in a snappy :27.4 with Speedy Samadhi tucked in third and Peaceful Prince fourth on the outside and grinding forward. Pacific Cyclone was content to hug the pylons around the second turn with an impatient Whispur sent on a double bubble binge halfway through the mile in :58 followed by Herecomesthechief. On the backside, Whispur surged up to take command and opened up some daylight past the third station in 1:28.3 with Herecomesthechief On The Attack with Speedy Samadhi still locked up and looking for that seam of hope. Turning for home, Whispur was all out and couldn't stall Herecomesthechief who surged on by but couldn't hold off Speedy Samadhi who, somehow, shook loose to close widest of all for the win. In a post race interview, driver John Campagnuolo said, "I was very fortunate to wend my way out as the leaders began to tire and Speedy (Samadhi) acted like be was the pebble inside a slingshot and, 'zing,' he was on his way." Driver Dein Spriggs (Herecomesthechief) aded, "I thought I had a chance to hit the wire first but, man, that horse of John's was very impressive tonight. Both Campagnuolo and Spriggs commended the Pompano race office and management for "carding our events on a regular basis so we could continue our mission to help worthwhile charitable causes. The Club has donated in excess of $125,000 from driver's fees on their races. For Speedy Samadhi, it was his 59th lifetime victory with his lifetime earnings vaulting over the $250,000 mark--$251,033 to be precise. As sixth choice among the punters, Speedy Samadhi paid $31.20 to win while the exacta, with the 16 to 1 outsider Herecomesthechief second, paid $493.80. With Whispur third, the 2-7-4 trifecta came back $1,605.20. The $8,000 Late Closing Final for Condition Claiming Fillies and Mares went to the 3 to 5 favorite Goldstar Rockette, handled by Mickey McNichol for owner-trainer Louis Ginesi. The four year-old daughter of Rock On led at every station, carding panels of :27.2, :57.4 and 1:26.1 before sealing the deal with a :29 finale to stop the timer in 1:55.1. I C U Misty, handled by Dave Ingraham and the longest proposition in the sextet at 19 to 1, finished second, 3 3/4 lengths away while the garden sitting Racin For Gold (Andy Santeramo) finished third. Regal Magic and Foxy Ginger also earned awards. For Goldstar Rockette, the win sent her 2014 scorecard to 5-3-2 in 13 starts, good for $17,824 this year--almost three times the amount she earned last season in 17 starts. She's now banked $27,999 lifetime. She paid $3.20 to win. Finally, in the $10,000 Open Pace, S S G Stables Cartoonist, driven by Dave Ingraham for trainer Jim McDonald, ground out a game, first over, photo finish win in 1:52.4, nailing the pacesetting Flight Exec (Kevin Wallis) in the final strides for the victory measuring a neck. Who's Your Maddy (Walter Ross, Jr.) finished third while Rick's Sign picked up the fourth place award. Avantage was fifth in the quintette. For Cartoonist, a consistent four year-old son of Modern Art, it was his fifth win of the year in 18 starts, sending his 2014 bankroll to $36,760, by far his most successful season of his young career. As second choice on the tote-board, Cartoonist paid $8.80 to win. by John Berry, for Isle Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...May 21, 2014...Tug River Dylan, handled by Dave Ingraham, wore down pacesetting Illusionsndreams, driven by Andy Santeramo turning for home and went on to score a victory measuring 1 1/4 lengths in Pompano Park's $10,000 Open Trot on Wednesday night. Andover America, with Tom Sells handling the lines, rallied in the lane to get up for a dead-heat with Illusionsndreams for second with Lugar and Celebrity Legacy completing the quintette. The victory by the eight year-old son of Cr Commando extended his winner's streak to three for owner-trainer Bob Dutilly and pushed his seasonal bounty to $33,315, just a shade off of "Dylan's" earnings for all of 2013. He's banked $131,771 lifetime. It was Illusionsndreams cutting all of the panels in this one, stopping the timer at :29 for the opener with subsequent panels of :58.1 and 1:27 with Celebrity Legacy in the garden spot half way through the mile and Tug River Dylan next but on the move three-eights out to put pressure on the leader at station number three. In the lane, Tug River forged to the lead with the issue never in doubt from the eighth pole on home. In a post race interview, driver Dave Ingraham said, "...he's such a handy thing. You can send him...you can rate him...he can brush hard and quickly and Bob (Dutilly) has him very sharp right now. With Sells' horse (Andover America) and Simard's horse (Lugar) not leaving, it left me in a great, close-up spot. Heck, if those two had left, I would have been that much further out of it early, so it worked out great!" As second choice in the betting, Tug River Dylan paid $7.20 to win. Kevin Wallis scored a grand slam on the card, including the $7,500 final of Isle Casino Racing's Late Closing Final for Claiming Pacers with Knight Of My Life. This six year-old son of Life Sign, owned and trained by Linda Wallis, wired his foes on fractions of :27.2, :57.2 and 1:26.1 before sealing the issue with a :28 second final quarter--his margin of victory two lengths over stablemate Your My Boy Blue, driven by Mickey McNichol. Dynamic Rayzer (Dave Ingraham) rallied for third with Black Magic Racing's duo of Wake and Kennairemachmagic finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the field of six. For Knight of My Life, it was his six win in 14 starts this year, good for earnings of $16,180, this after earning the grand sum of $78 during his five start campaign last year. As the overwhelming 1 to 20 favorite, Knight Of My Life paid $2.10 to win. Wallis' other winners on the program were Take Heart ($4.80) in the $6,000 Open 3 Trot for owner-trainer Linda Wallis, Undercover Bro ($3.80) in the $7,000 Open 2 Trot trainer Gaston Lareau and the JP Houle Stable and Scirocco Sarah ($9.40), who broke her maiden for trainer Peter Blood, who co-owns with Lew Whitaker. by John Berry, for Harnesslink.com

Pompano Beach, FL...May 17, 2014...Flight Exec, Who's Your Maddy and Nearly Uncle captured the trio of feature events highlighting the Saturday night card at Isle Casino Racing Pompano Park. Flight Exec, driven by Kevin Wallis for owner-trainer-wife Linda Wallis, took honors in the $10,000 Open. This five year-old son of Western Ideal garnered his second straight success in the top company and third win of the year. A strategic quarter move to the top was the key to victory and, after a :28.1 opener, Flight Exec proceeded on to post "soft" fractions of :57 and 1:25.4 en route to a two length win in 1:53.3 over Neptune Blue Chip (Andy Santeramo) and Cartoonist (Dave Ingraham) with Shamderock fourth and Avantage picking up the nickel in the five horse affair. Said Wallis after the event, "Whenever you can get a horse the caliber of Flight Exec on the front end of things to a half in :57, your chances are always pretty decent. Dave's (Ingraham) horse (Cartoonist) was brushing strongly on the backside but, when my horse heard him, he kinda pricked his ears back and put it in another gear. He was sharp tonight." Flight Exec now has three wins in five starts since his return to the racing wars just a month ago and the win pushed his lifetime bounty to $142,395--$17,358 this year in but seven starts. As the overwhelming favorite at 2 to 5, Flight Exec paid $2.80 to win. The $7,500 Open 2 Pace went to Who's Your Maddy, also superbly handled by Kevin Wallis. The five year-old son of Artiscape was away in good order--third in his quintette--but made a sharp move prior to the opening panel and securing the top spot just past that pole in :28.4. After lolly-gagging to the half in :58.4 and strolling even a tad slower than that on the backside, Who's Your Maddy met a strong challenge from Melvyn (Mickey McNichol), brushing from last to take a short lead past the third station in 1:29.1. Turning for home, Who's Your Maddy understandably had tons left in the tank and fought back sprinting home in :27.3--last eighth :13.1--to score the win measuring three-parts of a length over a very game Melvyn with millionaire pacer Hyperion Hanover (Andy Santeramo) third in the mile timed in 1:56.4. Maxine's Menace and Casey's Lil Harry completed the run-down. For Who's Your Maddy, trained by Jim McDonald for Dan MacIsaac and Twenty Four Carrot Racing, it was his third success of the year in 17 starts, sending his 2014 bankroll to $23,925 and $118,319 lifetime. As the 4 to 5 public choice, Who's Your Maddy paid $3.80 to win. The $8,500 Final of the Isle Casino Racing Late Closer for Claiming Trotters went to Nearly Uncle for Mickey McNichol in 1:59. Owned and trained by Ted Berry, Nearly Uncle was the longest proposition on the tote-board in his quartette at 9 to 2 and scored a decisive win measuring 4 3/4 lengths over the late charging Anton K (Dave Ingraham). Miss Janine (Kevin Wallis) was third while Majestic Valley finished fourth. The winner was well off the pace as the even money favorite, Miss Janine, sizzled opening panels of :28 and :56.1 with Majestic Valley, Nearly Uncle and Anton K strung out behind.. On the backside, Miss Janine began to feel the effects of her hard labor and the field began closing in with Majestic Valley leaving the pocked at the third station timed in 1:27.2 with Nearly Uncle double-bubbled and charging. Turning for home, Nearly Uncle swept into the lead with authority and widened the advantage to the wire with Anton K edging past Miss Janine a couple of strides from the line for the second spot. In a post race interview, driver Mickey McNichol said, "In a four horse field, I really thought that the fractions would be a lot slower, but the :56.1 half kind of played right into my horse's hands--I mean hooves. When the speed came back to us, he just went on by pretty easily." It was only the second win of the year for Nearly Uncle and biggest payday since an Open win at Saratoga in August of 2012. He now has $130,851 lifetime--$9,943 this year. He paid $11.40 to win. by John Berry, for the Isle Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...May 7, 2014...Andover America, the ultra-game nine year-old Andover Hall gelding, returned from a two month vacation Wednesday night at Pompano Park and promptly took top honors in the $10,000 Open Handicap Trot.   Owned by Mc Trade Enterprises and trained by Stewart Nemiro, Andover America was driven by Bruce Ranger and stopped the clock in 1:57 in defeating Illusionsndreams (Andy Santeramo) by a neck. Permanent Joy (Dave Ingraham) was third followed by Lugar and Cathy's Princess, who went off at 1 to 2 on the board on the strength of three straight impressive wins, all wire-to-wire with "1's" at every call during those events.   Indeed, it was Cathy's Princess who left quickest of all from the coveted five post cutting panels of :28, :57 and 1:27.1 with Illusionsndreams in the garden spot and Andover America third.   Around the final turn, Santeramo left the pocket and quickly disposed of Cathy's Princess by the top of the lane with Andover America now in hot pursuit.   These two--Illusionsndreams and Andover America fought tooth and nail to the wire with the latter edging by in the final few strides.   Ranger, himself, was surprised by the win saying, "I really though he needed a tightener coming into the race but he's just a great horse and knows how to win."   Indeed, he does.   The victory was the 53rd in his grand career--third this year--and vaulted his lifetime earnings over the $760,000 mark, currently at $761,540.   Ranger continued, "...some horses have that great quality of knowing how to win. They just have a will...a desire...to win and seem to know where the wire is. He's got a little age on him now but he still maintains that great will to win. It's what champions are made of, I guess!"   The $7,500 Open "2" Trot went to Tug River Dylan, driven by Dave Ingraham.   This eight year-old son of Cr Commando wired his competition in 1:55, carving fractions of :27.4; :56.3 and 1:25 along the way in pinning a 2 1/4 length defeat on Celebrity Legacy (Bruce Ranger) with Northern Inferno (Andy Santeramo) third. Glittering Muscles and Adenium picked up the final two awards in the field of nine.   Owned and trained by Bob Dutilly, Tug River Dylan won for the fourth time this year in 17 starts pushing his seasonal bounty to $23,315. He has banked $121,771 lifetime to go along with a mark of 1:53.3 achieved just a few starts back at Pompano Park.   After the event, driver Dave Ingraham said, "you know, there's this old joke about the driver who asked his trainer if a horse could leave and the trainer said, 'I don't know, I've only had him a couple of years!' Same story here, I looked at the program and decided to try something different and leave with him. He was very strong leaving and kept it up the whole route. It was a great mile for him!"   As thee slight favorite at 7 to 5 on the tote-board, Tug River Dylan paid $4.80 to win.   by John Berry, for Isle Pompano Park      

Pompano Beach, FL...April 30, 2014...Illusionsndreams stepped on Pompano Park's five-eighths mile "field of dreams" on Wednesday night and handily disposed of six rivals in a seasonal best 1:54.3 for driver-trainer Andy Santeramo.   The eight year-old altered son of Kadabra, co-owned by Santeramo along with Steve Maietta, burst out of the gate to an early lead and yielded three-eighths into the mile before reclaiming command three-eighths from home to score by three lengths over the 8 to 5 favorite Celebrity Legacy (Bruce Ranger). Glittering Muscles (Bryce Fenn) finished third with Adenium next and Tug River Dylan picking up the nickel in the septet.   Clocking an opening panel of :27.2, Illusionsndreams seemed a bit headstrong early before allowing Northern Inferno to assume command and take the field half way home in :56. Midway on the backstretch, Santeramo sent his charge out and winging in a second move and, in just a few long strides, took command and opened daylight on the field past 3/4s in 1:25.3. From there it was a cakewalk home as Illusionsndreams was well in hand during the :29 finale, easily holding off the late rallying Celebrity Legacy, who trotted the fastest final quarter in the race--:28.3--but was no threat to the winner.   In a post race interview, Santeramo said, "...last week, we were chewed up pretty good going :26 and a piece from the seven post before we could take the lead and, after that, we didn't have any offense on the backstretch. This time, we had a great post and we were able to get the lead easily. It made a big difference tonight. Illusions felt strong the entire way and when I asked him on the backside, he really responded. He was well within himself to the wire."   For Illusionsndreams, it was his third success of the year--and 25th lifetime--to send his seasonal bank bankroll to $15,245 and $315,467 lifetime.   by John Berry, for Isle Pompano Park      

Pompano Beach, FL...April 26, 2014...Cartoonist, given a "picture perfect" drive by Kevin Wallis, easily took top honors in Pompano Park's $10,000 Open Pace on Saturday night. The four year-old gelded son of Modern Art stopped the timer in 1:53 after posting front end fractions of :27.4, :57.3 and 1:25.4 along the way--his winning margin just short of three lengths over Rick's Sign, driven by Andy Santeramo. Neptune Blue Chip finished third for Bruce Ranger while McGreat and Shamderock completed the quintet. It was the fourth win in 14 starts for Cartoonist, pushing his seasonal bankroll to $25,560, just a shade below what he earned the entire full season of 2013. In a post race interview, driver Kevin Wallis said, "Since the five post is so advantageous here, I thought it would be good to use this horse's good gate speed and try and control the pace. We got a nice breather during the second quarter so I feelt rather comfortable he could carry his speed the rest of the way...and he did." Indeed, the :55.2 final half mile sealed the deal for the S S G Stables of North Boston, N.Y. Trainer Jim McDonald added, "He's developed into a very solid racehorse over time and he sure is reliable for a :27 and a piece final quarter. He's very consistent and I am hoping the best is yet to come." In somewhat of a betting oddity, the order of finish was exactly as the public predicted with the winner, off at 1 to 2, returning $3.00, the 7 to 2 second choice finishing second, followed by Neptune Blue Chip (6 to 1), McGreat (8.50 to 1) and Shamderock (8.90 to 1). by John Berry, for Isle Pompano Park

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