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The Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA) announces that, effective immediately, the Elimination Guidelines have been updated and will now be ONLY AVAILABLE online. Moving forward, the Elimination Guidelines will be updated on an "as needed" basis. For each future update, the CPMA will send out an Industry Notice to those subscribed to the Email Subscription Service. The printed Elimination Guidelines booklet is now obsolete. Changes in this new online edition include changes to clenbuterol testing as well as the addition of five new drugs, as described below: Guidance for clenbuterol use has been extended from 7 days to 28 days. The new testing will be effective on May 1st, 2020. Addition of new guidelines for the following five drugs: Cetirizine (for example Reactine) Clodronate (for example Osphos) Fluticasone (for example Flovent) Fluticasone / Salmeterol (for example Advair) Ipratropium bromide (for example Atrovent) The CPMA strongly recommends that you consult your veterinarian on any decision to administer any supplement or medication to a racehorse. If you have any questions, please contact the CPMA at 1-800-268-8835 or at aafc.cpmawebacpm.aac@canada.ca. ________________________________________________________________________________________________ Addition of Altrenogest, Grapiprant, and Lubabegron to the Schedule of Prohibited Drugs in the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations (March 18, 2020) In consultation with its Drug Advisory Committee, the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA) has officially added the following drugs to section 1 of the Schedule to the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations: Altrenogest, Grapiprant and Lubabegron. Altrenogest is an oral hormone that is used to keep female horses from coming into heat, and to suppress unwanted behaviours associated with heat cycles. It is also used to modify behaviour in male horses. Use in females is a legitimate therapeutic use. Use in males is not, and this use is prohibited by many jurisdictions internationally. In alignment with other jurisdictions, and through a policy decision, the CPMA will only prohibit this drug's use in male horses. Veterinarians and trainers may continue to use Altrenogest in female horses. Grapiprant is a drug used to treat arthritis pain and inflammation in dogs. This drug is not recognized for use in horses. Lubabegron is a drug used in cattle to reduce ammonia gas emissions. This drug is not recognized for use in horses. Therefore, any detection of the above drugs, with the exception of Altrenogest in female horses, may result in a positive test. The CPMA strongly recommends consulting a veterinarian on any decision to administer supplements or medications to a racehorse. Testing for these drugs will begin on May 1, 2020.  

Trois-Rivieres, QC - The second nomination payment of $1,000 is due for the 2020 $200,000 Prix d'Ete for four-year-old pacers at the Hippodrome 3R. The race takes place on Sunday, August 23, 2020. The second payment must be post marked by Wednesday, April 15. There were 30 horses nominated to the first payment. All nominations payments must be made in order to remain eligible. There are no supplemental payments allowed for the Prix D'Ete. For the first time there will also be a $50,000 consolation race on the same day for those horses that do not make it to the final. The final will feature the eight-top money-winning nominees during the 2020 season. Horses that finish sixth thru eighth place in the final will each receive $1,000. To make the second sustaining nomination payment, owners/trainers can click here or go on www.hippodrome3r.ca to get the necessary payment/nomination forms. From the Quebec Jockey Club Listing of the 30 horses that made the first payment. AIR FORCE HANOVER AMERICAN MERCURY ANGERS BAYAMA BEST IN SHOW BLLACK HOLE BLOOD MONEY BRANQUINHO BRONX SEELSTER CAPTAIN MALICIOUS CAPTAIN TREVOR CAPTAIN VICTORIOUS CAVIART ROCKLAND CAVIART STETSON CENTURY FARROH COVERED BRIDGE DANCIN LOU FLAMEPROOF HANOVER HICKFROMFRENCHLICK HIGHLANDBEACHLOVER LEGION SEELSTER MILITARY SECRET OLLIES ZTAM PROOF RESPECT OUR FLAG ROCKIE GOT FRAMED ROLLWITHPAPAJOE SEMI TOUGH TYGA HANOVER U S CAPTAIN WILD WILD WESTERN    

She may just be 15, but Gracie Mae Barr has always had a thing for the horses. This young Thamesford, Ontario miss grew up watching both of her parents, Scott and Bethany, work in the business of harness racing. “There is no chance that I wasn’t going to be into the horses,” states Barr. “My parents are into harness racing - my Dad trained full time and my Mom works the London Selected Yearling Sale… The day I was born (March 8, 2005) my Dad raced two horses, Coyote Sam and Future Honey, at Western Fair Raceway and they both won! For me - I think it’s just meant to be… ” Though it’s been a lifetime of horses, for Barr, it’s only been over the last few seasons that she’s been attending the races in London. “My first actual memory of the Raceway was when my Dad took me in to see a ‘mini pony race’. We went to watch and cheer on our friend Travis Moore who was racing his pony Wally,” she says. “And now I enjoy watching and cheering on many who race in London… Sue McNeight and the Horner Stable, Lorne House, Paul Chapman, Brent Belore, the Reibeling’s and there’s lots more - pretty much anyone than can get me to the track on race days - I’ll cheer them on too…” So being this young lady, relatively new to the backstretch, we asked if there was a horsewoman that Barr has noticed and now looks up to on race nights… “It’s Teesha Symes - no question,” she says. “From watching her I can tell she’s a hard worker and I can see that she cares a lot for her horses too… She’s always smiling so she must love what she does and her horses always look great when they walk into the race paddock - everything just looks so professional…” Barr’s favourite racehorse, this meet in London, has been Hidden Potential - a former top class pacer who found his form with the ‘seniors pace’ events. “He’s a really nice horse, to be around, except in the winner’s circle,” notes Barr. “He has knocked me over, in there, but other than that - as long as he has his chew chain and carrots - he’s a happy boy.” Another Raceway fave for Barr, this racing season, would be her victory with Family First. “He was my first win, paddocking by myself, for trainer John Pentland,” she says “John is a family friend that we’ve known for years. I started going to his barn with my Dad on the weekends and now, with school shut down, I’ve been busy working at his stable… My parents are OK with it as long as my grades don’t suffer.” And in her spare time Gracie Mae - like so many others in the business - has a retired racehorse to ride…”His racing name was Nospeednofeed, but I call him ‘Buddy’. My Dad used to race his mother Tenacious Dream.” Another connection for Barr and Pentland has been the impressive filly Lauras Love - they share ownership on this lightly raced daughter of Betterthancheddar. “She didn’t race as a two-year-old, because she was a little on the immature side and John wanted to take things slow with her,” she explains. “That way she could maybe have a strong three-year-old season and so far she has.”  Indeed she has… Lauras Love would debut at Woodbine Mohawk Park, on January 23 of this year - finishing sixth, but her strong 26.3 final quarter would indicate that she may be good to go next time out. And just one week later - that she was… “When she won that night - as she crossed the finish line - there may have been a few tears, not only because it was my first win as an owner, but because it was our first win together. I’ll also never forget Ken Middleton giving me the shout-out in the winners circle - it was just a real special night!”  Now a winner of 4 from 5 career starts - Lauras Love gets some down time to freshen up as Ontario - and the rest of North America - awaits the return of harness racing. “I’m just beyond proud of what she has accomplished,” says Barr. “I knew last year that she had some talent, but I had no idea she would go out and win four in a row. She’s the first horse that I’ve officially owned and there’s no other horse I’d rather own than her. She’s super goofy - with a lot of personality, but she’s just meant for me…” And the future plans for Lauras Love - is there any chance that we’ll see her at The Raceway going forward? “I’m not sure where else she’ll race - other than at Woodbine Mohawk Park,” reports Barr. “It’s completely up to her trainer to decide… And I’ll trust that he’ll do what’s best for her - he’s been right so far!” Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Track Announcer - The Raceway  

Mississauga, ON — Sunday evening (April 5) saw another Central Ontario Standardbred Association TV episode featuring host Greg Blanchard and three of this generation’s most accomplished and respected hartness racing catch drivers — Yannick Gingras, Matt Kakaley and Tim Tetrick. The interview was streamed on COSA TV’s Facebook Page and was produced by Curtis MacDonald’s CUJO Entertainment. The trio of drivers answered questions from fans, revisited memorable moments and filled the harness racing world in on what they are doing during dark days of racing as racing continues to be suspended across North America due to the COVID-19 outbreak. To read more and watch the episode, click here. From Standardbred Canada

Larry Resnitzky and Nicole MacLeod MacPherson of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, have established the website worldharnessracing.com to help draw attention to the many positives of the great harness racing industry worldwide. We’ve now completed a test run of 52 podcasts and are ready to embark on a new phase, with more participation worldwide. On April 7, 2020 we will release a special radio talk show with the legendary Joe O’Brien on worldharnessracing.com. The show aired in 1983, one year before Joe’s passing. It will be available with an interactive component that will see one person chosen at random on May 4 to receive a new copy of the now out-of-print book  THE HORSEMAN FROM ALBERTON The Story of Harness Racing Driver Joe O’Brien by Marie Hill. Contact:  larry@retromedia.ca

Michigan’s David Omicioli, owner of the good harness racing mare Turbo Diva, reached out to us recently after reading up on some people stories at The Raceway. “We’re also on lockdown,” reports Omicioli. “Hopefully we see a vaccine developed soon for this coronavirus… I miss my horses and I miss hanging out at the racetracks…” Turbo Diva raced in London for trainer Tim Myers and now finds herself stabled in Hamburg, New York. “She was able to race one time at Buffalo Raceway (a fourth-best finish on March 11) before that track closed,” says Omicioli. “My cousin (Frank Mahiques) is now training her there. She’s enjoying her life in Buffalo… There’s a pool, a walker and a ten-acre paddock at the farm - plus she also has a new best friend in Mya - my cousin’s nine-year-old granddaughter… Buffalo is scheduled to re-open May 2, but I think that could be just a mark on the wall.”   Omicioli has raced pacers Qarma Blue Chip and Surf Report (both trained by Myers) at The Raceway, over the last few seasons, and he’s also enjoyed watching and cheering on Reel - a Preferred class pacer conditioned by Myers. “I really like that big horse… He rarely seems to get an easy trip, but he’s always a contender whenever he races.” Trainer Myers now co-owns a two-year-old, with Omicioli, that was purchased at the London Selected Yearling Sale last Fall. “There’s a funny story how I bought him,” he chuckles. “My oldest son Nick, Tim and I were at the sale and we weren’t having any luck buying a yearling on that final Sunday, but we liked a few horses that were going to sell late. So getting a bit restless Tim says ‘Let’s go look at those yearlings we picked out.’… Then after looking over those potential stars again - for a third or fourth time - we returned to the sales arena. We chose a spot up high in the bleachers. Tim, Nick and I had just sat down when we saw that a yearling was stuck on a price of $3,000… Now I just knew it was a ‘Control The Moment’ (yearling) and I didn’t even have my catalog open, but Nick did, so I turned to Nick and asked ‘Do you think the horse is worth $4,000?’… Nick replied ‘I think so!’… So I raised my hand and I got the horse for $4,000.” “I was thinking, at the time, even if he didn’t make it as a racehorse - I’d get my $4,000 back… Nick said ‘You should have seen Tim’s face!’… Tim was a little upset, with me, because we didn’t even go look at the horse beforehand and I remember as we walked down the bleacher stairs, to go sign the sales slip, Tim asked me if it was a colt or a filly… I turned to him and said ‘Hell, I don’t even know!’… Nick and I laughed about it all the way back to Michigan…” Trainer Jim Jarvis and his son Dillon had been with the three gentlemen, at the sale, earlier on the weekend. “They were with us, but they had to leave because Dillon had hockey,” says Omicioli. “Dillon told me on the way out that he wanted in, if I bought anything, so now Dillon and Tim are going to be added to the ownership line with me. It should be fun!”  And the yearling sale story doesn’t quite end there… “Nick had suggested a name change to ‘Just Trust Me Tim’, but I’ve come to like his registered name ‘of Thatmomentinlife’… Anyhow the colt is doing well and he paces right along free-legged. We have him paid up for the Ontario Sire Stakes and hopefully we’ll be talking about his sale story and some racing stories - in the years to come!” Thatmomentinlife - most appropriately named considering how the hammer dropped on this hip #251 at the London Selected Yearling Sale of 2019… Good luck guys! Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Track Announcer - The Raceway sdoyle@westernfairdistrict.com

Hopefully, by early June the harness racing scene will be back in action. Red Shores has allotted time slots for trainers to get their work done while adhering to social distancing and other strict health measures.  The breeding season is now upon us and broodmare owners are carefully selecting stallions for their mares.  I talked to Ian Moore when he was here a few weeks ago and he told me he has two Arthur Blue Chips in training and they are impressive. One is a colt and the other a filly. Arthur Blue Chip is standing his first season at Bruce Wood’s Woodmere Farms and the Shadow Play stallion is a gorgeous looking individual.  Woodmere also stands Rollwithitharry, whose first crop in 2019 produced the Atlantic Breeders crown two-year-old winner, and another great looker in Stonebridge Terror, a high-percentage sire who has to his credit the top two-year-old Half Cut. The Bettors Delight horse Malicious led Canada and North America three-year-olds in four categories, including percentage of three-year-olds to the races and percentage of three-year-olds with sub 2:00 records. He’s standing at Windemere Farms along with Articulator, sire of such standouts as Atlantic sire champions Ramblinglily and Woodmere Oleksiak. Jamie MacKinley’s J J Farms in Cornwall has a couple of interesting studs in Hilarious Halo p, 1:48:3 ($475,000), the fastest stallion in the region and whose first crop will race this summer, plus Tobago Cays (Rocknroll Hanover, $800,000) who had two stakes winners from a small test crop of three last summer in Delaware. Tobago is out of the great Bunny Lake, which is interesting indeed. Next week, I’ll look at HowMac Farms star Source of Pride, Robin Burke’s highly regarded Shanghai Phil and the Ron Gass Farm in Cornwall plus other stallions. In closing, here’s a funny story. I asked taximan George Larter how his three-year-old The Fox was training under the care of Brendon Curran. “The colt looks good, but they’re trying to convert me into a Tory,” laughed George.  Good luck with that one!  By Fred MacDonald Reprinted with permission of The Journal Pioneer  

Charlottetown, PE - Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park is pleased to launch a new live harness racing racetrack cam to allow owners and horse lovers to enjoy the daily training routines of the equine athletes from the comfort of their home during the COVID - 19 Health crisis. The cameras will stream daily from 7am - 5pm from the Red Shores web site. Guests can go to redshores.ca and click on the live racing page. The live track cam will allow you to view the virtual training center. Lee Drake

Like so many others, involved in harness racing, horseman Lorne House was born and raised into the business as well… “Indeed I grew up in it,” he says. “My Dad, Mike House, had horses and my Grandfather, Alf Smith, he raced horses too.” It’s now been about 20 years in the business, for House, as a licensed harness trainer and driver in Ontario. His first career training win would come in London, with Fluid Drive, on November 4, 1999… “He was the first horse I ever owned too,” says House. “Don McElroy would have drove him and many others for me back then. I just didn’t have the itch to drive at that time…” That itch would indeed come along, a few years later, when House would get in the majority of his qualifying drives, at The Raceway, during the Spring of 2001. It’d be Sarnia, in September of that year, where he’d guide Tinkers Magic to an off-the-pace win for his first career driving victory. And then it would be Fantastic Lil giving Lorne his first London driving win in early 2003. The pair would double up, next start at Flamboro, before that same mare would get claimed. “The guy that claimed her - well I guess he didn’t like her… He called me to see if I wanted her back, not long after, but I turned him down.” And so it goes - Fanstastic Lil would retire with just two career victories. A few favourite horses, for House, over the years at The Raceway… “Grogan was a nice, nice trotter I trained and drove… I still remember the day he won an O.S.S. Grassroots in London (June 19, 2007)… The track was sloppy and we won by 11 in 2:00 flat! If the track would have been fast, that day, we’d have broke the track record I’m sure,” states House. “He’s retired now and I believe he’s breeding Dutch Warmblood mares in Indiana.” “Kendal Gustav was another great horse to drive,” offers House. “I had lots of thrills aboard him. He was just so consistent and when it was time to go - it’s like he just knew and he’d show up… I could always count on ‘Gus’.   A very interesting question came up, recently, during a COSA TV special featuring driving legends Ron Waples, John Campbell and Bill ODonnell. Broadcast host Greg Blanchard would ask the gentlemen if there was ever a horse they never had a chance to drive, but wish they could have… Well they all quickly agreed on Niatross as that one horse they wished they could have drove in a big race. So I then asked House that same question and his answer may surprise some… “The Beach (Somebeachsomewhere) would be the dream horse and an obvious choice for many, I’m sure, but I’ve always liked the hard knocking older horses - the blue-collar types, so Admirals Express would likely be that one horse for me.” Outside of harness racing House says he’s a big Toronto Blue Jays fan and he loves to fish as well. “I do miss seeing the Jays play and my boy (Luc) loves the baseball too, but he’s not a Jays fan just yet though,” he laughs. “The fishing I picked up from my Grandfather years ago - we’d get out lots… And now it’s been Luc and I getting out.” Lorne’s son Luc, at just 8 years of age, would come up big, recently, on the Niagara River around Queenston. “We’d never fished there before, but away we went last Friday (March 27),” says House. “We weren’t there 15 minutes and Luc hooked on to a 12-pound rainbow (trout)… And he wouldn’t need any help, from me, though he was getting tired into the stretch, but he dug in and landed him,” House chuckled. “It was a very proud moment for us both and he was grinning from ear to ear… We’d end up catching 13 that day and he’d catch 8 of them… I always loved fishing with my Dad and Grandpa, so my boy Luc - I guess he gets it honest enough!” “We weren’t there 15 minutes and Luc hooked on to a 12-pound rainbow (trout) And like his Dad - Luc enjoys the horses too… Sitting alongside Lorne, at The Raceway in 2017, Luc would guide Ping to an exhibition pony race victory… “Now that was fun! Just for him alone - he was ecstatic… And we still have Ping too - she looks after the yearlings on the farm.” Final words go to House on this current downtime for horse racing… “We’ve been quite busy training and I look after the track at Dorchester Downs,” he says. “Angela (Clark) has been training Munndutch back under saddle, but we’ll have him back in the bike when racing returns… We’re just hoping to get back to racing soon and preferably in London. There’s no doubt we’ll be ready to race when and where the tracks are open.”    Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Track Announcer - The Raceway sdoyle@westernfairdistrict.com

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Looking at a list of colts and fillies sired by Western Paradise is like a who’s who of Atlantic Harness racing, so it comes as no surprise he was named the stallion of the past decade. In a poll of local harness racing participants, Western Paradise was the heavy favourite for top stallion of 2010-2019. Western Paradise was acquired by Tony Zuethoff of Pictonian Farms in Pictou, N.S., for the 2004 breeding season and was an instant success. And that trend followed season after season. At one point, he even commanded a $1,600 stud fee. The past decade saw a number of top Western Paradise offspring, headlined by the richest Maritime-bred ever, The Rev. The Rev boasts more than $606,000 in career earnings and is still racing on the top circuit in Canada at age 10. Second on Western Paradise’s list is daughter Lovineveryminute, who was recently named the Atlantic-bred pacing female of the decade with $551,000 in earnings to show for herself. The fastest Maritime-bred ever is another Western Paradise son. Rancousy was a winner in 1:49.1 over Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Other top Western Paradise offspring in the past decade include Maritime-record holding two-year-old filly Saulsbrook Alana ($174,000 earned), Inverness, N.S., track record holder Oceanview Magnum ($145,000), and Maritime champions like Elektra Express ($127,000), Heart And Soul ($99,000), Junebugs Baby ($126,000) and Forever Paradise ($177,000). Another star pupil is Malabrigo ($143,000), who won 16 straight races in an undefeated three-year-old campaign in 2012. Western Paradise spent most of his career at Pictonian Farms but had a stay at Woodmere Farms in Marshfield for the last four years of his duties. His last active year was in 2017 when he bred 17 mares and produced nine foals, with those horses currently training to hopefully race in the 2020 season. After the death of Drop Off in the previous decade, there is no doubt Western Paradise is his successor in siring horses good enough to leave the region and race the top ranks at any racetrack in North America. What they said Here’s what harness racing officials had to say about Western Paradise: “A great sire, his offspring usually go and race at the higher levels throughout North America. He makes them pretty tough, too.” Driver Marc Campbell “Western Paradise has been an extraordinary pacing sire in the Maritimes. Not only did he produce early speed but also many hard-hitting, big-money racehorses, who have competed against the best in North America.” Breeder William Andrew "Top sire for many years. Trained babies by him that were very talented from the get-go.” Driver Adam Merner        “When you look at the stakes results, you’re sure to find this guy’s name. Puts serious speed in his offspring.” Driver Corey MacPherson “Has produced a legacy of champions that will leave a lasting impact on our sport.” Lee Drake, Red Shores manager of marketing and brands Top Five A look at horses who received the most votes for stallion of the decade. 1. Western Paradise 2. Proven Lover 3. Ameripan Gigolo 4. Articulator 5. Armbro Barrister Nicholas Oakes' column appears in The Guardian each Friday. He can be reached at nicholasoakes@hotmail.com. Reprinted with permission of The Guardian

Charlottetown, PE - The Prince Edward Island Harness Racing Industry Association, Prince Edward Island Standardbred Horse Owners Association and the Prince County Horsemen's Club, in conjunction with Red Shores, have announced that due to COVID-19, the live harness racing schedule for May has been cancelled. A tentative start date for live harness racing has been set for June 4th, pending further updates from the Chief Public Health Officer. The Ruby Chappell and Bob Dewar stake events scheduled for Red Shores Summerside will be rescheduled to a later date. More information regarding the harness racing season will be released on May 1st. Blaine MacPherson Chairman, PEI Harness Racing Industry Association Blainemacpherson55@gmail.com 902.393.0950             This E-mail message (including attachments, if any) is intended for the use of the individual or entity to which it is addressed and may contain information that is privileged, proprietary, confidential and exempt from disclosure. If you are not the intended recipient, you are notified that any dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this communication in error, please notify the sender and erase this E-mail message immediately. Le présent message électronique (y compris les pièces qui y sont annexées, le cas échéant) s'adresse au destinataire indiqué et peut contenir des renseignements de caractère privé ou confidentiel. Si vous n'êtes pas le destinataire de ce document, nous vous signalons qu'il est strictement interdit de le diffuser, de le distribuer ou de le reproduire. Si ce message vous a été transmis par erreur, veuillez en informer l'expéditeur et le supprimer immédiatement.  

“We’re still quite busy, with a stable of 15 horses,” says young harness racing owner Cassidy Schneider. “The only thing, that’s really changed, is the fact that we don’t race now… We still jog and train them… We’re still doing our thing week in and week out.” Schneider, at just 18 years of age, can almost remember becoming a racehorse owner back in 2007… “I do know it was Arizona Gem,” she says. “He was the first horse in my name, because (at that time) I wasn’t allowed in the paddock - so my dad bought him and put him in my name… From that point on I could go into any paddock - because I was an owner. I still have a win photo, of that horse, with my dad driving and I was sitting on the race bike in the winner’s circle… So that is what I remember about him.” A midget hockey league player, with the Grand River Mustangs, Schneider has always enjoyed the competition on the ice, but it’s safe to say, now, she’ll pass on any hockey game to race her horses. “I remember when I first signed up for hockey and went to my first practice… My Dad had to race that same night at Grand River and our horse, Count Strike, would end up getting claimed that night… Another time, I missed the races, was when I went to play hockey in Guelph and ended up breaking my arm during the game. Well my Dad raced and came straight to the hospital, to see me, on his way home, but I knew then - after those two experiences - that I’d not be missing any more races for a hockey game.”  Cassidy Schneider At least a fourth-generation harness racer from Arthur, Ontario - Schneider gets her love for the sport honestly… “My Dad (Colonel Schneider Jr.) had a stable long before I came along,” she says. “He was also born and raised into the business. His Dad and my Grandpa (Colonel Schneider) had horses and before that his Dad and my Great Grandpa raced horses too. I can remember jogging my first horse at the age of 8 - it was PL Dangerous and I’ve had this love for the horses ever since.” Looking back to her earliest memory of a race night, at The Raceway, Schneider recalls paddocking Emerald Rihanna with her Dad. “I didn’t know it, at the time, but my Dad had made a deal with Ricky Moffat on a grey horse named Hudd,” she explains. “We stopped on our way home from the races and picked up Hudd… I was asleep, in the passenger seat, so I wasn’t even aware we had stopped and put him on the trailer. When we got home - I helped unload and it was only then that I discovered we had another horse - this big grey horse and we still have him to this day.” Reb The Raider, Maddys Credit, Kinmundys Stryker and their most recent addition, Foxton Road, are just some of the horses that have campaigned, in London, for the Schneider’s in recent years. Cassidy mentions that she does get attached to the horses that come and go from their barn, but when it comes to a favourite she’s very quick to admit that it’s Reb The Raider. “He’s my all-time fave!” she says proudly. “We bought ‘Reb’ almost six years ago. We raced him for a while and then he got claimed, but we claimed him right back for the same price of $5,000 (March of 2015)… It was then that he won 4 in a row - from London to Woodbine to Flamboro to Mohawk - there was even a Preferred win in there too and we’ve had him ever since.” Cassidy Schneider ‘Reb’ would also provide Schneider with a few more memorable victories during his racing career and her favourite driver, for this particular horse, would be aboard for those wins.… “The first time Natasha Day drove, for us, was at Hanover in 2017 and she won - she won with Reb! It had been almost 2 years since he’d won a race - so that was very special for me - Nat would be his driver from then on… She was on ‘Reb’ for my all-time favorite win, at The Raceway, too - a Preferred 3 win (January 29, 2018) - the last time we made it to the winner’s circle with him. He’s just been an all-around nice horse on and off the track - we’re happy to still have him with us!” We saw last week, through horse owner Kelley McNiven, that the standardbreds are pretty keen to go on under saddle and the same deal goes for Schneider… “I have - pretty much - the majority of my race horses broke to ride, but ‘Reb’ has been my favourite for that as well. I wasn’t surprised that he took to it so quickly and enjoyed it - again he’s just an all-around nice horse.”  And Schneider - on this current downtime away from the racing action… “I’ve missed being able to socialize and see my friends at the races. Hopefully we can all get back to doing what we love sooner - rather than later.” Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Announcer – The Raceway  

Foiled Again! He may not have won the 2014 edition of the Molson Pace, at The Raceway, but he would certainly live up to the hype for and in that race - my first harness racing ‘big race’ call in Ontario - after moving from Alberta during the Fall of 2013… This particular race call was going to be a HUGE deal for this small-town guy from P.E.I.! I can remember being very nervous, beforehand, on the day of May 30, 2014. Some big name horses were coming to London - Foiled Again, Apprentice Hanover and State Treasurer - among others… And then the list of drivers, for the big race, was very impressive - Chris Christoforou, Jody Jamieson, Yannick Gingras, Brett Miller, Trevor Henry, Sylvain Filion, Jason Bartlett and Mark MacDonald - most I’d only seen racing via simulcast prior to this day.   When I had heard Foiled Again was with us and in the paddock on this day - long before the crowd began to show up - I made my way there for a face-to-face visit… It was only then when I began to feel my nervous butterflies fly away… The old saying goes “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.” - Winston Churchill… Now I’ve always been in a firm believer in this quote and the moment I came face-to-face with Foiled Again - was the moment a calmness came over me. He was so calm and cool - like it was just another day at the races - for one of harness racing’s greatest ever. My meet and greet with this ‘people’s champ’ was just what I needed and from that point on - I’d be good to go! There’s always some prep work involved for calling the horses and sometimes the biggest races may get a little more attention than the others… We can go over a race - dozens of times beforehand and try to guess what ‘may happen’ for pace and trip scenarios, but for the 2014 Molson Pace - nobody could have predicted the start for race favourite State Treasurer and nobody could have imagined that he’d overcome it… The only thing I had ‘scripted’ - for this particular race - would be my ‘salute call’ for Foiled Again as they turned for home… “This is Foiled Again being awesome - it’s awesome being Foiled Again!”… I was lucky to not have any other ‘crib note calls’ at the ready for this one - they’d have been no good to me anyway and likely would have made for a messed up call in the end… In the end - I think the call worked out well - the race itself came out even better! 2014 Molson Pace - www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=6&v=NvQJGFg-R4g&feature=emb_title Had a chance recently to watch, listen and reminisce about - some great race calls from back in the day on a race callers roundtable… For me Tom Durkin has my favourite race call ever! It’s for the 1989 Breeders Cup with Sunday Silence winning over easy Goer… His adjectives used to describe the action, the rise in his booming voice for the stretch drive and then - when it’s over - you can really appreciate the fact in knowing that he gave it everything he had… A great job by the ‘roundtable’ host Greg Blachard and fun catching up with fellow race caller Ken Middleton. To watch last Wednesday’s COSA TV: ‘Race Callers Roundtable’ click on this link https://standardbredcanada.ca/news/3-25-20/live-interview-middleton-doyl… *I did have a Raceway fan/player lined up for today’s blog feature, but he was busy celebrating the birth of a new grandson - born this past weekend… Congratulations Jim Brewer and Family! Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Announcer - The Raceway

With a very light schedule of harness racing taking place throughout the world, right now, it was easy to catch up with lifelong harness racing fan and bettor Melissa Keith. A recent winner of the 2019 John Hervey Award (for feature writing) at the Annual Dan Patch Awards - Keith, of Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia, had been a recent addition to the Bettors’ Corner - featured on the Ontario Racing website. Keith’s Friday night in-depth analysis, for The Raceway, was just starting to heat up - when all of a sudden - Ontario harness racing came to a halt due to the corona-virus. “My favourite win of the season was Rubber Knows beating Dan Dar Mal on that final Friday night card (March 13). She was my Ontario Racing ‘Spot Play’ of the night on the Bettors’ Corner and she’d return $50.90 to win!” Keith’s interest in harness racing goes back to the days of Sackville Downs, in Halifax, N.S., attending the races with her Dad and brothers. “I can remember my elementary school class getting a tour of the backstretch, back in the day, as well. I became fascinated by these amazing animals and the unique world of the racetrack.” “Sackville Downs had incredible crowds and handle - up until it closed in the 1980’s, so simply attending the races was enough to cultivate a strong interest in harness racing. There were several stars, at the time, who captured everyone’s imagination: Winners Accolade, Waveore and Angels Shadow were the ‘big three’. When my Dad signed me up for riding lessons, naturally I was paired up with a retired standardbred pacer (Starshot Lobell). I took some heat for occasionally letting him pace fast under saddle on the farm’s training track!” After many years of watching and wagering on the horses around the Maritimes – Keith was bound to find a few favourites along the way… “My favourite racehorses, past & present, is a long list! The first horse that I really followed closely was a pacer who came to Sackville Downs, from Sudbury Downs, in the 1980’s - a good-looking pacing stallion named Syd Grattan. Carl Jamieson trained and drove him - many years later I learned Syd Grattan was the horse Carl credited with really getting his career moving forward. There was also a trotting stallion by the name of Sunbound who was driven and also trained, I believe, by Ken Arsenault (not the Kenny Arsenault still active in P.E.I.). I cheered for him trackside every race and he was the first horse I ever got out for a winner’s circle photo with. They weren’t the winningest or fastest horses, at Sackville Downs, but they were charismatic and exciting to watch. My Dad’s friend Charlie Piper bought a grey gelding by Smog - named Irish Fog and I became a fan of this pacer as well.”  It’s years later now and after learning to play the horses, growing up around Sackville Downs, we asked - when was it that Keith would actually stumble upon The Raceway as a betting option? “My earliest memory of The Raceway is watching and wagering, with my Dad, at the Sackville Superbowl OTB and finding out that it was a tough track to handicap! And then I wasn’t following racing so much, during my university years, because there was no track around and no online wagering yet, but I got drawn back into it immediately in the Moni Maker era. I remember going to Champions OTB on Bloor Street, on a Sunday morning, to watch her in the Prix d’Amerique. She was one of a kind!” “This year is tough - with horses sidelined now - right as the Grand Circuit races were scheduled to start with the MGM Borgata (formerly George Morton Levy) and Blue Chip Matchmakers Series at Yonkers. It was disappointing, but understandable when The Raceway closed as a corona-virus precaution back on March 19… So my favourite ‘active’ horses, right now, are hopefully going to come back strong: Gimpanzee, Shartin N and hopefully Bold Eagle makes it back to North America.”  Looking back on some favourites, at The Raceway, Keith says she really enjoyed the 2014 edition of the Molson Pace. “That race featured such a gutsy effort by State Treasurer. He had a rough start and had to close from last for a three-horse photo finish with Foiled Again and Apprentice Hanover. He got there just in time! Scott Coulter is probably my favourite driver at The Raceway; he seems to get the best from any horse and rates horses so well on the front end. From past Western Fair drivers - Dave Wall & Trevor Ritchie both obviously went on to have great careers with great trotters… I associate them with Goodtimes and Peaceful Way - two of the best trotters I’ve ever seen race.” “Past performers Button Up and Lady Latte were a couple of my Raceway favourites as well. Before the COVID-19 hiatus, I was enjoying the emerging rivalry among Windsong Ophelia, Warrawee Usain and Super T - three talented young trotters who were ready to duke it out again on March 20 - which ended up being cancelled. Talbot Eh Plus has probably been my favourite horse this season. She’s won half her starts, racing respectably at Woodbine Mohawk Park and dominating at the mile distance on a half.” And one last bit from Keith on handicapping The Raceway… “Handicapping The Raceway, for Ontario Racing, has really highlighted the quality winter racing at Western Fair. Wagering is up - which reflects that as well. Favourites often win, but there is value to be found and that last turn is always full of suspense. I’ll be looking forward to another Camluck Classic, but more than that, I’ll be looking forward to the return of the regular London races that keep the sport rolling.”  *To read Melissa’s two-part award-winning story from 2019 - click on the following Harness Racing Update links… Part 1) The tragic and mysterious death of a harness horseman https://harnessracingupdate.com/2019/04/14/the-tragic-and-mysterious-dea… Part 2) A wanderer with an incredible heart https://harnessracingupdate.com/2019/05/24/a-wanderer-with-an-incredible… Shannon ‘Sugar’ Doyle Announcer - The Raceway

Guelph, ON Mar. 30, 2020 - Equine Guelph has opened a FREE offering of their online Sickness Prevention in Horses course ($85 value - free with coupon code) in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.   TheHosePortal.ca course is based on the Canadian standard for equine biosecurity.  While many are at home for the next few weeks, this is an ideal time to learn online and develop your own action plan and backup arrangements.   Maintaining health is everyone’s responsibility. Biosecurity is a word and practice not well understood by an unsettling number of public riding facilities.   How many people wipe down the chains and snaps on cross-ties with disinfectant because they understand this is one of many practices that can reduce the risk of disease spread?  This is just one of the simple take-aways from Equine Guelph’s free Biosecurity Calculator online healthcare tool.   Other agricultural industries such as poultry and dairy follow strict protocols to ensure the health of their animals.  Every person entering a facility has to log in and out.  They follow the rules of National Codes of Practice and Biosecurity.  The horse industry also has a National Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Equines and a National Farm and Facility Level Biosecurity standard for the Equine Sector.      Those who have read and follow those guidelines may well lament over the number of facilities that immediately introduce an unknown horse into it’s herd with complete optimism that nothing will go wrong.  In this time of heightened alert, all reliable sources of education to prevent sickness are our salvation.  We all can and must take steps to safeguard health of both humans and animals.   Just what do you say to someone who comes back from their boarding barn search with the complaint, “Oh, it’s a lovely facility but they want to quarantine my horse for the first month - that will be inconvenient and I want my horse to have group turn-out.”?  The COVID-19 outbreak has made us all keenly aware of the importance of physical distancing as a crucial way to prevent the spread of disease.  Asymptomatic (no evidence of symptoms) does not equate to no health risk to others.   Our minds should instantly become more at ease when a facility has a quarantine protocol, wants to see vaccination records or even wants to see results from a strangles swab.  Horses are social, herd animals and being with their herd mates is an important component of their welfare but there is also an important balance to strike in safeguarding herd health.    If a horse enters a stable (perhaps travelling from a ‘hot spot’ – e.g. auction or yearling sale to name but two) asymptomatic upon arrival but they happen to be carrying a transmittable disease – what then?  They can pass the disease on to the entire herd.  That is inconvenient, costly and in the worst-case scenarios deadly. It is also a preventable welfare issue for the horses that suffer from the disease.   In this unprecedented time of social distancing, people are becoming acutely aware of the importance of carefully monitoring health and following quarantine protocols.   Monitoring for fever, cough and signs of sickness is daily news at the moment.   In a recent  article run by the Toronto Star regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, Amy Greer, Canada research chair in population disease modelling at the University of Guelph  was quoted “It’s possible that Ontario will never experience the level of community transmission that the model estimates — just as it’s also possible that the province is on the cusp of a wider outbreak.  From a public health perspective, that’s always the challenge,” said Greer,  “If we do a really good job, people say, ‘Well you were overreacting, because nothing happened.’”   Well-run equestrian facilities and well informed horse owners closely monitor horses that have recently traveled.  Temperatures are taken daily along with a thorough horse health check.  Feed buckets, water buckets, tack, stall-cleaning equipment are not shared.  Hoses are never allowed to touch down into the buckets when they are refilled.  New arrivals may be able to see but not touch other horses.  Ideally, a separate quarantine barn is utilized.   For existing residents, such as horses returning home from being on the show circuit (higher risk location) best practices are to turn them out together but separate from the herd that does not travel.     Dr. Scott Weese, infection control expert at the University of Guelph has been very busy with his Worms and Germs blog as of late, providing advice for the FAQ’s coming in from animal owners. Weese was recently interviewed by TVO What we know — and don’t know — about how COVID-19 affects animals.  Weese is also featured in many resources in Equine Guelph’s biosecurity resources.   Maintaining health is the responsibility of everyone.   Arm yourself with scientifically proven information.  Ensure you have a written plan in case you get sick or injured to ensure ongoing care for your horses.   Stay safe everyone during this COVID-19 pandemic.  When it is all over may we all emerge strong, informed and vigilant in biosecurity best practices.    Equine Guelph’s Resources for Equine Health & Biosecurity: Equine Guelph’s Biosecurity Calculator - free online healthcare tool Equine Guelph’s Sickness Prevention online short course - Special FREE offering! Equine Guelph’s Health & Disease 12-week online course   Equine Guelph HEALTHflash Alert – COVID-19 - Caring for your horse during a pandemic    COVID-19 resources helpful for horse owners and caretakers     Notes to Editor: Equine Guelph is the horse owners' and care givers' Centre at the University of Guelph in Canada. It is a unique partnership dedicated to the health and well-being of horses, supported and overseen by equine industry groups. Equine Guelph is the epicentre for academia, industry and government - for the good of the equine industry as a whole. For further information, visit www.equineguelph.ca.   Story by: Jackie Bellamy-Zions - Equine Guelph   Photos:  (images available upon request)    Photo Caption: Have you created an action plan to care for your animals?   Web Link(s):  Story web link: https://thehorseportal.ca/2020/03/protect-your-herd-equine-guelph-announces-a-free-offering-of-online-sickness-prevention-course/   Other web links:   FREE offering of Equine Guelph's Online Sickness Prevention in Horses course https://thehorseportal.ca/course/sickness-prevention-in-horses-s20/   National Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Equines https://equineguelph.ca/pdf/tools/codeofpractice/equine_code_of_practice%20(1).pdf   National Farm and Facility Level Biosecurity Standard for the Equine Sector  https://www.equineguelph.ca/pdf/tools/CFIA_ACIA-7979460-v1-Equine-Standard-English-PDF-Final.pdf    Toronto Star article: https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/03/10/social-distancing-could-go-a-long-way-toward-slowing-down-covid-19-researchers-say.html?fbclid=IwAR29CXayus3I2LUofg6A7Xg-Z8520SicukLH-0moAC8KM5RmG9J87W__UQ4   Worms and germs blog by infection control expert, Dr. Scott Weese https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/   TVO story with Dr. Weese: https://www.tvo.org/article/what-we-know-and-dont-know-about-how-covid-19-affects-animals   Equine Guelph HEALTHflash Alert – COVID-19 - Caring for your horse during a pandemic   https://www.equineguelph.ca/news/index.php?content=666   COVID-19 resources helpful for horse owners and caretakers https://thehorseportal.ca/covid-19-updates-resources/   Equine Guelph’s Biosecurity Calculator https://www.equineguelph.ca/Tools/biosecurity.php   Equine Guelph’s Sickness Prevention online short course https://thehorseportal.ca/course/equine-biosecurity-standard/   Equine Guelph’s Health & Disease 12-week online course https://courses.opened.uoguelph.ca/search/publicCourseSearchDetails.do?method=load&courseId=17916       Jackie Bellamy-Zions Communications Equine Guelph Guelph, ON  N1G 2W1 519.824.4120 ext. 54756 jbellamy@uoguelph.ca  

Saturday March 28, 2020 - Charlottetown, PE - Members and stakeholders of the Prince Edward Island harness racing community combined forces and talents to launch a new program during the COVID - 19 pandemic. The Virtual Tack Room, created by former Standardbred Canada director Kent Oakes, features race videos, a photo parade and special guests sharing memories and stories on the Universum Media Facebook page. The concept was to continue to bring the harness racing community together through technology while practicing social distancing and self-isolation. Co-creators and Red Shores hosts Lee Drake and Peter MacPhee along with race historian Jerry McCabe assist in anchoring the broadcast. Scott MacLean, owner of UMI Sports, handles the production duties. This weeks edition with the 1993 Dairy Queen final with guest Garry MacDonald while Mike Campbell speaks about the Clipper Seelster miracle mile at Fredericton Raceway. The segment also has Winner's Accolade smashing the 2:00 barrier at Summerside Raceway in 1984. The final set highlights pacer of the decade Sock It Away. Lee Drake  

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