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GOSHEN, NY - Mark Hall, the U.S. Trotting Association photographer who holds the modern record for citations for excellence in his field, and Dave Little, who has successfully worked in such journalistic areas as writing, editing, handicapping, race announcing, and television commentary, have been announced as new members of the Communicators Hall of Fame in recent balloting conducted by the U.S. Harness Writers Association (USHWA), the sport's leading media group. To determine the Communicators Hall of Famers, chapter nominees were whittled down to five finalists by a blue-ribbon panel of USHWAns, and then the organization's directors selected two of that quintet for placement on the summer election ballot. They were elected by winning 75%+ of the "yes-no" ballots returned in a midsummer balloting, with all Active members of USHWA eligible to vote, held in conjunction with the Hall of Fame voting. Mark Hall has worked in the photography department of the U.S. Trotting Association for over 35 years, teaming with two members of the Communicators Hall of Fame, George Smallsreed and Ed Keys. It is after the flamboyant Smallsreed that the annual USHWA photography awards are named, and Hall has done his former mentor proud by winning six Smallsreed awards, the most of any photographer, with his work spanning the Standardbred spectrum from racing to foals in the field to conformation photos to "beauty shots" involving the sport. Dave Little joined the team in publicity and TV functions at the mighty Meadowlands racetrack in New Jersey after working 24 years as the Racing Editor of the New York Daily News. Dave once "swept" a nine-race card at Roosevelt with his top selections, and also knows his way around a thoroughbred program as well. He has announced at several racetracks, including Historic Track in Goshen NY, and he is a longtime director of USHWA, as is his wife Debbie, who handicaps for the cross-city Post and is president of USHWA's New York City chapter. Hall and Little will first be publicly honored at the USHWA Dan Patch Banquet, to be held on Sunday, February 24, 2019 at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando FL, where the Halls of Famers will take their first ensemble bow during the banquet honoring the top humans and equines of the previous year's racing. Then comes the July 7 formal induction to the Halls of Fame, at a dinner set just outside the building in which their likeness will be placed to immortalize their selection as harness racing's best of the best. From the United States Harness Writers Association

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - A big Hambletonian Day crowd of better than 18,000 was on hand Saturday (Aug. 4) at the Meadowlands and what they witnessed were several pieces of harness racing history to go along with plenty of upsets along the way. Team Zeron - trainer-dad Rick and driver-son Scott - combined to take the 93rd Hambo with superfilly Atlanta, who became the first female to take harness racing's most-storied event since Continentalvictory in 1996. On his final Hambletonian Day before retirement, trainer Jimmy Takter maintained his stranglehold on the Hambo's sister event, the Hambletonian Oaks for fillies. Manchego gave Takter and his go-to driver Yannick Gingras five straight Oaks victories as Takter extended his record for all-time Oaks wins to eight. Of the 16 races on Hambo Day, eight had odds-on favorites, with only one of those (Shartin N in the Lady Liberty) managing to hit the finish line first. Among the prohibitive choices to taste defeat were Kissin In The Sand (Shady Daisy), Hannelore Hanover (John Cashman Memorial), Ariana G (Dr. John R. Steele Memorial) and Meadowlands Pace winner Courtly Choice (Cane Pace). BETTING WITH BOTH HANDS: The upsets did not deter the betting public one bit. On-track wagering on the Hambo Day card was just shy of $1.1 million, with live, export and separate pool wagering totaling a little more than $7 million. The breakdown: a. Live: $1,084,762 b. Export: $4,582,957 c. Total: $5,667,720 (Commingled Pools) d. Separate Pool Wagering Totals: $1,366,727 e. Total live, export and separate pool: $7,034,447 In fact, during a meeting where the race office battled week in and week out to fill race cards, the Meadowlands - by far the harness racing industry's handle leader despite numbers that were down from last year - was the only North American track to surpass the $3 million (three times), $4 million (Meadowlands Pace) and $5 million (Hambletonian Day) single-card handle plateaus during 2018. The only other track to reach the $3 million mark was Woodbine Mohawk Park, where $3.9 million was wagered on North America Cup Night. "Despite many challenges, such as a seemingly endless cold winter and an entry box that many times lacked support, we had a decent meeting nonetheless," said Jason Settlemoir, the track's chief operating officer and general manager. "Our loyal fan base stayed with us throughout the meeting, and for that, all of us at the Meadowlands are very appreciative. The meeting not only saw great racing, but the opening of our Fanduel SportsBook @ Victory Sports Bar on Meadowlands Pace Night, and it has been a big hit with our fans. We are cautiously optimistic about the future here at the Meadowlands Racetrack." MAROHN, BURKE TOP DASH-WINNERS: Jim Marohn Jr. finished the 2017-18 Big M season as the top dash-winning driver with 94 trips to victory lane. Gingras, whose 76 wins were good for second-best, was the top money-earning driver with $2.9 million, almost double that of runner-up Scott Zeron ($1.5 million). Ron Burke led the way in training wins (69) and was second in money earned ($2.1 million) while Takter was second in wins (39) and tops in money ($2.8 million). NEXT UP, THE RUNNERS: Monmouth Park will conduct the end of its meeting at the Meadowlands when thoroughbred racing comes to the mile oval. The dates for the brief six-card meeting of racing over the Big M grass course are Sept. 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 and 29. Post time is 7 p.m. HARNESS RETURNS OCT. 12: The 2018-2019 Meadowlands harness meeting kicks off on Friday, Oct. 12. Racing will be conducted on a Friday-Saturday basis through the end of November. During December, there will be racing Thursday-Saturday, with one exception. There will be no racing on Saturday, Dec. 15. Post time will be the usual 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - A pair of talented trotters hit the winner's circle in two divisions of the Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old colts and geldings on the trot at the Meadowlands Saturday night. In the first division of the final Hambletonian prep, Met's Hall was bet down to 3-5 and made the quarter on the point in a leisurely :28. Another rated fraction followed and Met's Hall was cruising past the half in :57.3. Hockey Hanover, the only non-Hambo eligible in the field of nine, then shocked the favorite (not to mention the bettors), using an authoritative brush to grab the lead, hitting three-quarters two lengths to the good in 1:25.4 at odds of 49-1. But despite closing in :27.2, Hockey Hanover couldn't complete the job. Met's Hall had a burst of speed left in his arsenal, and he used it, battling back along the inside, closing in :26.4, to record a neck win over a fast-closing Fashionwoodchopper. Hockey Hanover held third. With the Hambletonian just a week away, the timing was ideal for Met's Hall (Cantab Hall-Met's Inn) to record his first win of the year in just his third start. The heavy favorite, who was driven by Andy Miller and trained by Julie Miller, completed the mile in 1:53 and paid $3.40 in winning for the sixth time in 14 lifetime outings. Beal Memorial champion Crystal Fashion was a dominant winner of the second Reynolds division. Tim Tetrick had the gelded Cantab Hall-Window Willow product sitting an unhurried sixth in the early going before opting to race in a third-over flow down the backstretch. With an eighth of a mile to go, Crystal Fashion was tipped off his cover and stormed home to record a 1-length victory over Hat Trick Habit in 1:52.4. For A Dreamer was third. As the 1-5 public choice, Crystal Fashion returned $2.60 to win, scoring for the ninth time in 20 lifetime outings while upping his lifetime bankroll to just over $523,000. JL AND JOE CRUZE TO VICTORY: JL Cruze went right to the top and never looked back in the overnight co-feature, the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for trotters. The 7-year-old gelded son of Crazed-Topcat Hall stopped the clock in 1:51.2 and paid $11.40 as the fourth choice in the wagering. Western Joe sat off a speed duel where Miso Fast and Highalator went toe-to-toe to three-quarters in 1:20.3, then used a final quarter of :26.3 to win the $20,000 Preferred for pacers in a sizzling 1:47.3. In lowering his previous lifetime best by two seconds, Western Joe (Western Ideal-Ante Fay) paid $12.60 as the fourth betting choice. A LITTLE MORE: All-source wagering on the 12-race program totaled $2,335,364. ... Next weekend marks the final two race cards of the 2017-18 Meadowlands meeting. Friday's first race gets underway at 7:15 p.m. Hambletonian Day, Saturday, Aug. 4, has a special early post time of noon. ... Go to the Meadowlands Facebook page and check out the Hambletonian post position draw live at 2 p.m. Tuesday. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The two eliminations for the Jim Doherty Memorial for 2-year-old fillies on the trot were not safe for chalk players Friday night at the Meadowlands. Over a sloppy track that was battered by rain all night long, the first elim saw the top two betting choices go off stride as Susy (9-5) faltered around the first turn and Speed Titan (5-2) on the final turn. That left the door open for the tote board to light up. Special Honor, driven by Andy Miller and trained by Andy's wife Julie, was actually not even in play in the early stages of the race. In fact, at three-quarters she was in front of but one horse (Susy), but the daughter of Father Patrick-Honor Thy Daughter started to gather momentum heading into the stretch, swerved to the two path mid-lane and then found a seam in deep stretch to gun down the fast-closing The Ice Dutchess by a nose in a lifetime-best 1:55.1. Special Honor returned $38.60 to win. The exacta, comprised of an 18-1 shot over a 17-1 chance, returned $434.40. Hanna Dreamgirl, Hanovers Best and Jezzys Legacy were the third-, fourth- and fifth-place finishers, respectively, and earned a berth in next week's $357,450 Doherty Final. The second elim was contested in a deluge, and after 6-1 shot Starita yielded the early lead to 3-5 chalk Beautiful Sin, this result did not appear to be in doubt. The field raced well away from the rail as the rains continued to fall and Beautiful Sin turned for home on a safe 1½-length lead. Or so it appeared. In deep stretch, Beautiful Sin got leg weary and drifted away from the rail. That's when David Miller asked Starita for trot, and she gave him just enough to nip the favorite at the wire by a nose racing along the inside. Starita, a daughter of Trixton-Morningstar, paid $14.00 to win after completing the mile in a lifetime-best 1:55.2. The third- through fifth-place finishers earning a spot in the final were Fate Smiled, Swizzle Sticks and Whispering Oaks. A LITTLE MORE: One astute player in Ontario was the only bettor to survive seven legs of the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 and walked away with $15,469. ... David Miller drove three winners on the program, while Brett Miller, Corey Callahan and Andy McCarthy had two apiece. ... All-source wagering on the card totaled $1,621,378. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday at 7:15 p.m. Atop the marquee sit a pair of Hambletonian Oaks eliminations, featuring Manchego, Hey Blondie, Phaetosive and the fastest-ever 3-year-old trotter regardless of sex, Plunge Blue Chip (1:49.4). by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands   

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Helpisontheway looked like a seat-filler in the Saturday night feature at the Meadowlands, the $61,900 Arthur Tompkins Memorial for 3-year-old colts and geldings on the trot. The Linda Toscano trainee was sent to the gate at odds of 9-1 and was one of only two horses in the field of eight who are not eligible to the Hambletonian. He may not have looked like much on paper, but he sure did on the track. Tim Tetrick used a little of the colt's speed to grab the three hole early, before brushing to the top just before the half. Racing on the rim, here came 8-5 second choice Zephyr Kronos, inching closer as the pair passed three-quarters. In mid-stretch, it appeared Zephyr Kronos would go by easily, as driver Jimmy Takter wasn't getting after his Hambo hopeful, who is a son of Ready Cash-Orange Kronos. In deep stretch, Tetrick energetically asked Helpisontheway for more, and he responded as Takter took that cue and got after his colt, but at the conclusion of the three-sixteenths of a mile duel, it was Helpisontheway prevailing by a hard-fought neck in 1:53.2. Met's Hall finished third. Evaluate, the 3-2 favorite, went off stride at the start. Helpisontheway, a son of Chapter Seven-Porque who won twice earlier this year on the New York Sire Stakes circuit, now has three wins in seven starts this season and earnings of just over $94,000. He paid $20.60 to win. In the Arthur Tompkins for sophomore trotting females, Hey Blondie lived up to her 4-5 promise, racing parked for the final half-mile yet still scoring easily by a length over Bill's Lady in 1:54.3. Hey Blondie, a daughter of Cantab Hall-Winbak Blondie who is Hambletonian Oaks eligible, was driven by Andy McCarthy and trained by Chuck Sylvester. She returned $3.60 to her backers. A LITTLE MORE: The Early 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five resulted in a single-ticket winner. That Oregon Express player, who held the ticket with the 5-1-3-6-9 combination in race nine, walked away with $20,039. ... It was a double jackpot night, as the Late JSH5 was also hit, by a player in Ontario. That bettor with the ticket reading 9-6-5-3-1 in race 12 was paid $13,401. ... The 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 also had only one winner. That lucky Twin Spires player survived eight legs of the wager and cashed in for $11,109. ... The 50-Cent Pick-4 pool went past the $90,000 mark for a sixth straight time, as $90,308 was poured into the pot. ... All-source wagering totaled $1,942,079. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Friday at 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Trainers Jimmy Takter and Tony Alagna had the hot horses Friday night at the Meadowlands, as each conditioner sent three pupils apiece to the winner's circle. Takter swept the Early Daily Double not only as trainer, but driver as well. Susy took a division of the Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-old trotting fillies in 1:55.1. The 2-5 favorite is a daughter of Father Patrick. Tactical Landing, the 1-2 public choice, completed a $4, all-Takter double in a non-winners of two event. The Hambletonian hopeful, a son of Muscle Hill, hit the wire in 1:52.3. Takter's three-bagger was complete after 1-9 choice Beautiful Sin won a Kindergarten for 2-year-old trotting fillies in 1:55.1 in the sixth race. The daughter of Muscle Hill made it two wins in as many parimutuel starts. Alagna sent out a pair of winners in the Kindergarten for 2-year-old colts and geldings on the pace. The first was in race five, when Major Deception (a Captaintreacherous colt) scored in 1:53.3 as the 3-5 favorite. The other was with Captain Ahab (another Captaintreacherous colt), who scored as the 4-5 choice in a sizzling 1:51.1 in race nine. Tony's trifecta was capped in the 11th race when 5-1 chance (the longest shot of the night) Key West scored in a Kindergarten for 2-year-old pacing fillies in a remarkable 1:51.1. Making her second career start, the daughter of Captaintreacherous paced her final quarter in :25.4. A LITTLE MORE: Tim Tetrick drove three winners on the card, while Takter, Yannick Gingras and Andy McCarthy had two apiece. ... Marcus Melander trained a pair of winners on the program. ... Seven favorites scored on the 11-race card, with the longest two prices of the night (5-2 and 5-1) coming in the last two races to create a Late Double that came back $68.00. ... The Pick-4 pool $100,000 streak ended at four, but betting was still brisk at $90,497. ... Total handle on the card was $1,978,174. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday with a special post time of 8 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It was a big night on many fronts last Saturday (July 14) at the Meadowlands, as the $4 million plateau was reached in total handle, the track's sparkling new Fanduel Sports Book @ Victory Sports Bar was opened for wagering on professional sports and Hall of Fame driver David Miller won the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace for the first time in his 19th try. Total handle on the program was a meet-high $4,083,401 (an increase of approximately $250,000 over last year's Pace Night) as six stakes races on the program saw pools in excess of $300,000, with the Pace leading that parade, with $536,305 being put in play. "All of us at the Meadowlands are so pleased that our fans supported the Pace card like they did," said track Chief Operating Officer and General Manager Jason Settlemoir. "It just goes to show you with quality purses we attract quality horses and the public responds by betting with both fists." On the morning of Pace Night, the sports book opened to a big crowd anxious to place wagers on Major League Baseball, the World Cup Final and many other future bets. The hours of the sports book are as follows: Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m.-1 a.m.; Friday 10 a.m.-2 a.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.-2 a.m. and Sunday 9 a.m.-1 a.m. Finally, the 53-year-old Miller broke his Pace maiden by guiding 6-5 favorite Courtly Choice to a 1¼-length win over 57-1 shot Dorsoduro Hanover in 1:47.1. Horses driven by Miller have earned at least $10 million 15 times over the last 17 years and "The Buckeye" sports lifetime earnings of nearly $226 million. Miller will be the guest Friday night on "In the Sulky", the Big M's interview segment on its live simulcast presentation. It will be seen at approximately 7:35 p.m. POST TIME CHANGE: This Friday and Saturday, post time for the first live race at the Meadowlands will be 8 p.m. JUMP INTO THE POOL: After failing to reach six figures for two months, Saturday night marked the fourth consecutive race card where the 50-Cent Pick-4 pool reached $100,000, as a meet-high $142,198 was pushed through the windows. ... On Friday night, the Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five had a mandatory payout, and after "new" money pushed the total pool well past the $500,000 mark, those holding winning tickets cashed in for $76,472. HAMBO COUNTDOWN: It's just three Saturdays until this year's edition of the Hambletonian. Here is the track's schedule for its stretch run: July 20 and 21, post time 8 p.m.; July 27, 28 and Aug. 3, 7:15 p.m. On Hambletonian Day, Saturday, Aug. 4, post time is noon. On the card, more than $3 million in purse money will be up for grabs. HAVE A SPA DAY: Thoroughbred racing's most popular meeting starts on Friday as the Big M will feature racing from Saratoga on its daily simulcast menu. Every Saturday, there will be at least one $500,000 event on the Spa card, with the marquee event, the $1.25 Travers Stakes, slated for Saturday, August 25. Saratoga races every day except Tuesday through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 3. Post time is 1 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - With a pair of wagers sporting carryovers that promise to offer huge pools and likely payoffs to match, a signature stakes event that offers a purse of $701,830 and the long-awaited birth of the sports betting era, this weekend will be one to remember at the Meadowlands. First up is Friday, which has a first-race post time of 7:15 p.m. For just the second time in 2018, the 50-Cent Pick-5 sports a carryover ($28,976), which is significant, because the last carryover - one that was nearly identical to the current one - served as the catalyst for a final pool of over $250,000. Track management has put a guarantee on the pool of $100,000, but the final tally figures to be far more than that. The wager offers a low 15 percent takeout and will be offered on races three through seven. Based on last weekend, the track's signature 50-Cent Pick-4 (races eight through 11) is likely to have an overflow pool once again, one that far exceeds the guarantee of $50,000. Last Friday (July 6) and Saturday (July 7), the pools surpassed the $100,000 mark for the first time since mid-May, averaging just a tad more than $110,000. The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five pool, which should push past the seven-figure mark given the carryover of $276,939, will be available on the 13th and final race of the evening. Instead of one needing to be the only holder of a winning ticket to take down the jackpot, the wager has a mandatory payout Friday, meaning that all of those with winning combinations will take home a slice of the pie. And that slice figures to be a hefty one. In the event the final pool is $1 million, it breaks down this way:  Carryover -- $276,939  New money -- $723,061 15 percent takeout on new money -- $108,459  Total payout -- $891,541 Surplus to winners -- $168,480 Thus, a final pool of $1 million creates an enormous windfall for those who cash winning JSH5 tickets, giving them a 23 percent advantage. The United States Trotting Association will partner with the Big M on all guaranteed pool totals. A little less than 12 hours after Friday's last race, an historic Saturday gets underway at the mile oval. At 11 a.m., bettors will be able to place Las Vegas-style wagers on professional sports events. Action on Major League Baseball, World Cup Soccer, the National Football League, college football, etc. will be offered. If one was accustomed to betting on those events on the Vegas Strip, they will be able to now bet them at the Big M. "This promises to be one of the most exciting weekends ever for our fans," said Big M chief operating officer and general manager Jason Settlemoir. "In addition to a star-studded Saturday stakes card that includes our signature event, the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace, the ability to offer our patrons the chance to also bet on professional sports is a game-changer. All of us at the Meadowlands are extremely excited and hope all of our patrons take at least a few minutes to visit our new Fanduel Sports Book @ Victory Sports Bar." Saturday evening's live card of harness racing gets underway at 6:35 p.m. and offers a Murderer's Row of stakes events: The $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace for 3-year-old open pacers, $405,850 Hambletonian Maturity for 4-year-old open trotters, $191,800 Mistletoe Shalee for 3-year-old fillies on the pace, $189,750 Golden Girls for filly and mare pacers 3-years-old-and-up, $257,000 Del Miller Memorial for 3-year-old fillies on the trot (divisions), $362,000 Stanley Dancer Memorial for 3-year-old open trotters (divisions) and $471,100 William Haughton Memorial for open pacers 3-years-old-and-up. On what promises to be the biggest night of the year in terms of handle, two treats for players await: the 50-Cent Pick-5 (races three through seven) will have a guaranteed pool of $40,000 while the 50-Cent Pick-4 (races eight through 11) has a $75,000 guarantee. Both bets are likely to have pools that double (and possibly more) the promised amounts. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Stay Hungry and Courtly Choice were the harness racing winners of the $50,000 eliminations for next week's Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace Saturday night at the Meadowlands. "(The trip) worked out great and he got the job done," said Doug McNair, who guided Stay Hungry to victory in the first elim. "The trips have not worked out 100 percent for him." Until Saturday night, that is. McNair was content to race Stay Hungry from off the pace, sitting fifth at the quarter before picking up live cover from 37-1 shot Ideal Feeling after the half, where even-money favorite Nutcracker Sweet had the lead in :55.1. Ideal Feeling continued to make progress on the rim passing three-quarters. After the field straightened away in the stretch, McNair tipped the son of Somebeachsomewhere off his cover, and Stay Hungry did the rest. He cruised to the wire, a three-quarter length winner over the pocket-sitting Hayden Hanover. Thinkbig Dreambig closed well for third, while Nutcracker Sweet and This Is The Plan finished fourth and fifth, respectively, to qualify for next week's $701,830 final. "He's come back well," said trainer Tony Alagna of Stay Hungry. "The five-eighths mile racing is really not his forte (he finished fourth at Pocono in the Hempt). Everything came together tonight." As the 2-1 second choice, Stay Hungry paid $6.40 to win. He competed the mile in a lifetime-best 1:49. Two races later, Courtly Choice, supplemented to the event by his connections for $61,690, sat third as 4-5 favorite Jimmy Freight (the other supplemental entrant) cut out fractions of :27, :54.2 and 1:22.2. David Miller moved his horse off the rail at the five-eighths and inched closer to the leader around the far turn and still had work to do at the head of the stretch. But he was up to the task. Courtly Choice eased past Jimmy Freight in deep stretch and had more than enough to hold off the late rally of the pocket-sitting American History, who finished three-quarters of a length back in second. Jimmy Freight and Dorsoduro Hanover finished in a dead-heat for third while Babes Dig Me claimed the last spot in the final by finishing fifth. "I actually got away where I expected to," said David Miller. "He felt really strong. I asked him and he paced really hard. He's got big lungs and can carry his speed." "From last year to this year, he's really matured," said winning trainer Blake MacIntosh. "He loves to race now." As the 2-1 second choice in the wagering, Courtly Choice returned $6.00 to his backers. The son of Art Major hit the wire in a lifetime-best 1:48.2. A LITTLE MORE:  No one hit the 50-Cent Pick-5, meaning that for the first time since January, the wager will have a carryover. The last time there was a Pick-5 carryover, the pool total exceeded $250,000. … Speaking of carryovers, the Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $276,939. This Friday, July 13, the JSH5 will have a mandatory payout, meaning that to cash, one does not have to hold the only ticket with the winning combination. … For the second consecutive race card after a nearly two-month drought, the 50-Cent Pick-4 pool went past the $100,000 mark, as a total of $108,123 was poured into the pot. … The 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 was tough, with three early races going to a pair of 16-1 shots and a 26-1 chance. In the end, only one player survived six legs, and he or she cashed in for $12,491. … All-source wagering on the 12-race card totaled $2,513,366. … Racing resumes Friday at the Big M at 7:15 p.m. … Next Saturday has an early post time of 6:35 p.m. The featured event is the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. That morning, at 11 a.m., a new era in Big M history will be ushered in as sports betting will be available. The field for the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace, an open event for 3-year-olds, with post position, horse (driver, trainer) and morning-line odds. The Pace takes place on Saturday, July 14 and has an approximate post time of 9:45 p.m. PP HORSE (DRIVER, TRAINER), ODDS 1. Stay Hungry by Somebeachsomewhere - (Doug McNair, Tony Alagna), 3-1 2. This Is The Plan by Somebeachsomewhere - (Tim Tetrick, Chris Ryder), 15-1 3. American History by American Ideal (Yannick Gingras, Tony Alagna), 5-1 4. Jimmy Freight by Sportswriter - (Louis-Philippe Roy, Andrew Harris), 9-2 5. Courtly Choice by Art Major - (David Miller, Blake MacIntosh), 5-2 6. Nutcracker Sweet by Bettor's Delight - (No Driver, Jimmy Takter), 15-1 7. Hayden Hanover by Somebeachsomewhere - (Andy Miller, Julie Miller), 8-1 8. Thinkbig Dreambig by Bettor's Delight - (Jordan Stratton, Jimmy Takter), 12-1 9. Babes Dig Me by Somebeachsomewhere - (Brett Miller, Tony Alagna), 30-1 10. Dorsoduro Hanover by Somebeachsomewhere - (Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke), 15-1 by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands    

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Trainer Tony Alagna is undoubtedly hoping he can carry his momentum from one night to the next. Alagna, who has a total of five horses in the two Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace eliminations Saturday night, started his weekend in a big way, winning four times on the Friday program at the Meadowlands. The trainer got things going in the first race with Mollydooker ($4.20 to win as the second choice, Brett Miller driving) in a division of the New Jersey Sire Stakes for 2-year-old pacing fillies. The daughter of Great Vintage completed the mile in 1:55.1. Treacherous Reign ($4.60 as the second choice, Andy McCarthy) took race four, a division of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old fillies on the pace. The time for the mile was 1:53.1 for the daughter of Captaintreacherous. Odds On Boca Raton ($9.00 as the second choice, Scott Zeron) won the sixth race, a Kindergarten for 2-year-old colts and geldings on the pace. The Captaintreacherous product stopped the clock in 1:53.4. Alagna's four-bagger was completed in race 13, as Captain Ahab ($5.40 as the third choice, McCarthy), won another Kindergarten for juvenile male pacers. Sired by Captaintreacherous, Captain Ahab hit the wire in 1:52.2. A LITTLE MORE: The Big M's signature 50-Cent Pick-4 was extremely popular, as the pool reached the $100,000 mark for the first time since May 19. A total of $112,478 was poured into pot, and the odds of the winners in the sequence were 2-1, 3-1, 6-5 and even-money, leading to a payoff of $73.10. ... McCarthy guided Mother Bonnie to a 12-1 upset in the 12th race for NJSS 2-year-old filly trotters, giving him career win 2,000. ... A pair of lucky players went 10-for-10 in the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 and cashed in for $6,989. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, upping the carryover to $273,937. In the event no one hits the jackpot Saturday, the wager will have a mandatory payout on Friday, July 13. ... All-source wagering on the card was $2,318,503. ... Racing resumes Saturday at the Big M with a special post time of 6:35 p.m. Food and drink specials, the 1st annual Wiener Dog Derby, a fabulous fireworks show and eliminations for the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace will all be a part of what promises to be a big night. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - This Friday and Saturday signals the start of a five-weekend stretch at the Meadowlands during which many of the stars of the sport will be competing at the mile oval as the Meadowlands Pace kicks things off before the stakes-frenzy concludes on Hambletonian Day. After a 14-race Friday card (post time, 7:15 p.m.) that features many 2-year-olds, the Saturday program (post time, 6:35 p.m.) has a pair of eliminations - for the first time since 2015 - for the $701,830 Meadowlands Pace for 3-year-olds in the spotlight. In the first elim (Race 6), the field includes Nutcracker Sweet, who missed by just a head when second in the Hempt; Stay Hungry, fourth in both the North America Cup and Hempt; and Thinkbig Dreambig, who was interfered with in his first career start earlier this season before reeling off four straight victories. The second elim (Race 8) looks a bit stronger than the first, and features American History, who paced the fastest mile of the year in the sport last week when he won in 1:47 at the Big M. In addition, two talented colts have supplemented to the Pace for $61,690, and each has a big shot at winning the whole thing. First up is Courtly Choice, who is off a blowout 12½-length win in the Hempt Consolation in 1:48.4. Next is Jimmy Freight, who lost his seasonal debut by a nose. His only other loss this year in seven starts came at the hands of older standouts Sintra and McWicked in a 1:48 mile. A pair of Graduate Finals for 4-year-olds are also on the Saturday card, and each carries a purse of $250,000. In the fifth race for trotters, Ariana G will look to get back on track after losing two in a row for the first time in her career. She'll face Dunbar Hall and Moonshiner Hanover, each of whom was victorious in their respective most recent Graduate preliminaries. Miso Fast won preliminary legs at Woodbine Mohawk Park and Tioga Downs last month and will be one of the favorites in the 10th race for pacers. Early-season sensation Filibuster Hanover won a Graduate prelim at Tioga three starts back before a second and a fifth, respectively, in the Ben Franklin, which were his first two losses of the season. SUPER HIGH CARRYOVER: On Friday night, bettors will have a good reason to wait around for the 14th and final race. The carryover for the Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five stands at $272,052. Speaking of the JSH5, in the event the jackpot is not hit this weekend, there will be a mandatory payout of the carryover and any new money wagered on Friday, July 13. WIENER TAKE ALL: Saturday is Fan Appreciation Night as the Big M hosts its 1st annual Wiener Dog Races. For those who own a dachshund and want to enter, go to At the conclusion of the races, stay for a fantastic fireworks display. They'll be beer and food specials all night long. Remember, there is a special early post time of 6:35 p.m. this Saturday. STILL TO COME..... JULY 14: History will be made both on and off the track, as the Meadowlands' signature event, the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace for 3-year-olds, takes center stage, while a new era will be ushered in for Meadowlands' fans as Las Vegas-style sports betting will be offered for the first time. Patrons will not only be able to wager on live Meadowlands and simulcast horse and harness races but also on Major League Baseball games and future bets on National Football League games and prop bets, as well as many other professional sports events. The live racing program, which gets underway at 6:35 p.m., will offer other major stakes as well: The $400,000E Hambletonian Maturity for 4-year-old open trotters, $187,000E Mistletoe Shalee for 3-year-old fillies on the pace, $190,000E Golden Girls for filly and mare pacers 3-years-old-and-up, $250,000E Del Miller Memorial for 3-year-old fillies on the trot (divisions), $350,000E Stanley Dancer Memorial for 3-year-old open trotters (divisions) and $467,000E William Haughton Memorial for open pacers 3-years-old-and-up. (E-estimated purse. Exact purse becomes available when field size is determined at the entry box.) AUGUST 4: Harness racing's signature event, the $1 million Hambletonian, brings the best 3-year-old trotters to not only the Big M, but to a national television audience (on the CBS Sports Network). Post time is noon for harness racing's biggest day. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands    

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It what was the most thrilling finish of the year at the Meadowlands, Highalator outlasted a stubborn Bettor's Edge by the smallest of noses in the Saturday night feature, the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacers. Western Joe was third. Driver Eric Abbatiello asked Highalator for early speed, and the Jenny Bier trainee responded big time, reaching the quarter in :26.2 while parked out. As the cadence slowed, Jennifer Lappe put Bettor's Edge in play, moving the veteran three wide at three-eighths to go up after the leader, who hit the half in :55.2. The battle was now on. Highalator was at the rail with Bettor's Edge right alongside as the duo dueled nose-to-nose past the five-eighths and three-quarters (1:21.3) before Highalator gained a length lead at the head of the stretch. The pair continued to go at it as Bettor's Edge inched closer through the lane and when he took one last lunge at the wire, it appeared he may have gotten there in time. But he just missed. Apparently, Abbatiello thought he got caught. He had taken Highalator back to the paddock and had to be summoned to the winner's circle after his number was posted after the judges took several minutes to examine the photo. The winning time of 1:48 was a lifetime best for Highalator, a 4-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere, who won at the Big M on June 2 in 1:48.1. He's now won seven-of-17 starts this year and 19-of-38 overall. He has lifetime earnings of $233,218 for owners Jenny Bier, Joann Dombeck and Midsize Construction. As the 4-5 favorite, Highalator paid $3.80 to win. MONEY MAKIN' MILLENNIALS: New Jersey residents Aaron Staluzzi of Wayne ($2,500), Dennis J. McKeon III ($1,500) of Keansburg and Eric Pollari of Morris Plains ($1,000) were the big winners in the Big M's free-to-enter handicapping contest for patrons 18-30 years of age. The $5,000 in prize money was sponsored by Jeff and Paula Gural's Allerage Farms. A LITTLE MORE: Andy Miller drove four winners on the card while Abbatiello had three. ... The hot temperatures led to a lightning-fast track that produced eight lifetime-best miles and one lifetime-best equaling effort. ... One lucky player was sharp enough to survive eight legs of the 20-Cent Survivor Pick 10 and collected $10,813. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $272,052. ... All-source wagering on the 12-race card totaled $1,975,759. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Friday at 7:15 p.m. ... Saturday's card gets underway at 6:35 p.m. and features eliminations for the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands

Dorsoduro Hanover took the top spot back in Dave Little's Road to the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace off a win in one of three eliminations for the Hempt at Pocono Downs (the final is Saturday night). The next challenge for Dorsoduro and seven others: Defeating North America Cup champion Lather Up, whose connections are still kicking around the idea of supplementing to The Pace. Rank Horse Driver, Trainer, Owner(s) Dave Little’s Comments   1 Dorsoduro Hanover ($172,668 – 1:49.4) M. Kakaley, R. Burke Burke Racing, Silva, Purnel & Libby, Weaver Bruscemi, Wingfield Five Takes the top spot back off a lifetime-best win in his Hempt Elimination. The only blemish on his five-start 2018 resume is a tough-trip seventh in his NA Cup Elim. Burke: “He was good in his elimination but will need to step it up more in the final.” He’s drawn post 4 for the $500,000 Hempt Saturday night. Is there a way to beat 2-1 morning-line choice Lather Up (post 7)? Burke: “I haven’t figured that out yet.” Last Race: 6/23 – PcD – Hempt Elim – 1st (1:49.4) 2 Stay Hungry ($619,384 – 1:50)   D. McNair, T. Alagna B. Grant, I. Samelman   Finished a tough-trip third (missing a half-length) in his Hempt Elim and has drawn post 5 for the final. Alagna: “He raced terrific. A horse went off stride in front of him and he came to a halt. I thought it was one of his best races ever. He’s drawn a good post but beating Lather Up, that’s a tough assignment right now.” Last Race: 6/23 – PcD – Hempt Elim – 3rd (1:49.3) 3 Lost In Time ($718,723 – 1:50.1) S. Zeron, J. Takter Diamond Creek Racing, J&T Silva, W. Rufenacht, Ric Flair Stable Took the Hempt off to prepare for the Pace. Takter noted the grueling schedule for the 3-year-old pacing colts, where the NA Cup, Hempt and Meadowlands Pace require a horse to race for six straight weeks if they want to go in all three. “When you look at the schedule, it’s kind of insane. I don’t think this horse is suited for that. Horses are not machines. I think Lost In Time will be much better in the Pace than he was in the Cup.” Last Race: 6/16 – Wbsb – NA Cup Final – 3rd (1:48.4) 4 This Is The Plan ($243,372 – 1:50.2) T. Tetrick, C. Ryder C. Ryder, R. Mondillo Finished third in his Hempt elim after a four-week layoff but a luckless pill drop has left him with post 9 for the final. Ryder: “I’d have been happier had he finished second, but this week, we are adding Lasix after some minor bleeding. Some horses improve a lot on Lasix, some don’t at all.” Last Race: 6/23 – PcD – Hempt Elim – 3rd (1:49.4) 5 Thinkbig Dreambig ($38,500 – 1:49.2) Y. Gingras, J. Takter Brixton Medical Inc., J. Fielding, G. Anderberg, G. Falk   Since taking the Escort at the Meadowlands, this son of Bettor’s Delight has won two in a row in Pennsylvania with ease. Takter: “I’m going to race him at Tioga Friday (race 8, post 7). I want him to go a really strong mile. He’s so professional. We are still strongly considering going to the Pace.” Last Race: 6/20 – Phl – NW3 – 1st (1:52.2) 6 Nutcracker Sweet ($196,832 – 1:50.2) D. Miller, J. Takter H. Taylor, Order By Stable, R. Lombardo   Continues to prove he belongs with this division’s best while having yet to win this year. Finished second in his elim to Lather Up and has drawn post 1 for the final. Takter: “I thought he raced tremendous, Lather Up was just so freaking Good! Right now, he might be unbeatable.” Is Nutcracker sweet on The Pace? “Not sure if he’s going,” said Takter. “We still have a ton of races coming up.” Last Race: 6/23 – PcD – Hempt Elim – 2nd (1:49.2) 7 Babes Dig Me ($122,947 – 1:52.3Q) B. Miller, T. Alagna B.J. Grant, J. Sbrocco, J. Leblanc, In The Gym Partners   Went a rail trip to grab a fifth-place check in his Hempt Elim. Alagna: “He was in the toughest division, but once he got loose, he had pace in the lane. I am going to give him this week off.” Last Race: 6/23 – PcD – Hempt Elim – 5th (1:50.1) 8 American History ($94,243 – 1:49.1) Y. Gingras, T. Alagna Brittany Farms, M. Katz, American History Racing   Took the Hempt off after a 10th-place finish in the Cup. Will take on older foes Friday at the Meadowlands in a NW3. Alagna: “Coming off a bad start I thought I was better off giving him the week off to get ready for The Pace. He’s in Friday and trained great.” Last Race: 6/16 – Wbsb – NA Cup Final – 10th (1:50.3) 9 Captain Deo ($28,867 – 1:50.2) D. McNair, T. Alagna Alagna Racing, J. Sbrocco, In The Gym Partners, Captain Deo Partners   Kicked home in :26.2 to grab a fifth-place check in the Cup Consolation before taking the Hempt off. Alagna: “He’s been very good but hasn’t had a lot of luck. He’s been too far back coming into fast fractions.” He’s in the same Meadowlands race as stablemate American History Friday night. Last Race: 6/16 – Wbsb – NA Cup Consolation – 5th (1:50.3) 10 Odds On Lauderdale ($51,059 – 1:49.1) V. Ginsburg, T Alagna Odds On Racing   Breaks into the Top 10 after winning his second straight a week ago. The victory came from an impossible spot after being trapped until the final eighth of a mile. Is this a possible Pace upsetter? Alagna: “He’s a little bit of a sleeper. He showed a lot of ability last year. He wasn’t himself earlier in the year so we made some adjustments. As far as the Pace goes, we are on the bubble.” Last Race: 6/23 – M1 – NW2/3 – 1st (1:49.1)   KEY PREP RACES MEADOWLANDS PACE ELIGIBLES IN CAPS – Supplements are permitted per the conditions of the race Date Stakes Site Winner Trainer Driver 2nd Horse 3rd Horse Time                   5/5 PA Sire Stakes   Mea   THIS IS THE PLAN C. Ryder D. Palone BABES DIG ME Record Machine 1:53   PA Sire Stakes   Mea   DORSODURO HANOVER R. Burke J. Pantaleano Wes Delight CAPTAIN DEO 1:50.3                   5/19 PA Sire Stakes PcD I’M A BIG DEAL C. Ryder G. Napolitano Jr. GRAND TETON Whos Better 1:50.2   PA Sire Stakes PcD DORSODURO HANOVER R. Burke M. Kakaley THIS IS THE PLAN PRO BEACH 1:50.1   PA Sire Stakes PcD   Wes Delight M. Harder C. Callahan LOST IN TIME STAY HUNGRY 1:50.4 5/20 OnSS Gold Flm Backstreet Shadow R. McNair D. McNair St Lads Neptune Wind Blast 1:52.3   OnSS Gold Flm Western Passage C. Coleman D. McNair Levis Day SHADOW MOON 1:53.4 5/26 Art Rooney Final YR Trump Nation C. Oakes J. Bartlett Minnie Vinnie BABES DIG ME 1:51.3 5/28 NYSS VD 1 Courtly Choice B. MacIntosh D. Miller Hitman Hill Real Surreal 1:48.4   NYSS VD AMERICAN HISTORY T. Alagna Y. Gingras Rock Lights Heavenly Sound 1:49.1   NYSS VD My Delight H. Hochstetler M. Miller Lyons Steel Ostro Hanover 1:49.4 6/1 NJSS Final M1 Melanie’s Fran K. Mc Dermott D. Miller Hypnotico - 1:56.3 6/2 Somebeachsmwhere Moh Burning Midnight C. Giles T. Henry Simple Kinda Man GRAND TETON 1:50.4   Somebeachsmwhere Moh Lather Up C. Francis M. Teague St Lads Neptune Scouts Report 1:50.3   Somebeachsmwhere Moh Jimmy Freight R. Moreau L. Roy LOST IN TIME When You Dance 1:50.2 6/9 NA Cup Elim Moh STAY HUNGRY T. Alagna D. McNair Done Well HAYDEN HANOVER 1:50   NA Cup Elim Moh Wes Delight M. Harder C. Callahan NUTCRACKER SWEET AMERICAN HISTORY 1:50.2   NA Cup Elim Moh Lather Up C. Francis M. Teague St Lads Neptune Hitman Hill 1:49.2 6/10 NYSS Tioga Springsteen R. Allard D. Miller Real Surreal I Soar Him First 1:51   NYSS Tioga Heavenly Sound B. Saunders A. McCarthy Ideal Feeling Trump Nation 1:50.4   NYSS Tioga Keystone Tenacious P. Kelley M. MacDonald My Delight TWIN B TUFFENUFF 1:52.1 6/16 NA Cup Final Moh Lather Up C. Francis M. Teague Done Well LOST IN TIME 1:48.1 6/18 NYSS MR TOPVILLE OLYMPIAN D. Menary J. Stratton Mr Profeta TWIN B TUFFENUFF 1:55   NYSS MR Ghost Dance E. Adams S. Zeron Rockapelo Ostro Hanover 1:54.4   NYSS MR Rootin Tootin B. MacIntosh M. MacDonald Handsoffmychips My Delight 1:53.4 6/23 OnSS Gold Moh Sharp Action Money M. Brethour S. Filion Sports Legend Taste Of History 1:50.4   OnSS Gold Moh Jimmy Freight R. Moreau L. Roy St Lads Neptune Levis Day 1:49.2 6/23 Hempt Elim PcD DORSODURO HANOVER R. Burke M. Kakaley Springsteen THIS IS THE PLAN 1:49.4   Hempt Elim PcD Hitman Hill C. Oakes B. Miller Shnitzledosomethin STAY HUNGRY 1:49.3   Hempt Elim PcD Lather Up C. Francis M. Teague NUTCRACKER SWEET Wes Delight 1:49  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - This weekend, faithful Meadowlands fans will get 24 live races on which to wager, and in addition, will have a string of stakes races offered via simulcast. The Big M will have 12-race live programs on both Friday and Saturday, with each getting underway at the usual 7:15 p.m. Friday night will feature an appearance by the defending Dan Patch Horse of the Year, Hannelore Hanover. "Hannelore needs a race and this is the track that suits her best," said trainer Ron Burke. "I'm just keeping her fit." Currently at the top of the Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown weekly poll, Hannelore Hanover will face six accomplished rivals in the seventh race, a $20,000 Preferred Trot. The Meadowlands will present a glimpse into the future on Friday night with the first leg of the 2018 New Jersey Sires Stakes (NJSS) for 2-year-old trotters and pacers. While the Jersey-bred pacers are still few in number, the colts off the card at 6:15 with a field of three and the fillies a single division of six in the second race each for a purse of $15,000, the trotters are fortified by the progeny of two exciting first crop sires in Father Patrick and Trixton. The fourteen trotting colts split evenly into a pair of sevens, going as races 4 and 6 on the bill for a purse of $20,000. Trixton enjoys an advantage in numbers with a 10 to 4 edge among the entrants. Greenshoe is the 2-1 morning line choice in race 4 off a pair of dazzling morning trials. The $330,000 Lexington yearling purchase by Anders Strom as Courant, Inc sports a purple pedigree. The colt is by Father Patrick who is enjoying a remarkable start to his career as a sire and is the first foal from world champion mare Designed To Be. Greenshoe wowed the crowd in his first start on June 2 with a ridiculously easy 1:55 win for trainer Marcus Melander then returned two weeks later to win in a measured 1:56.1 for Brian Sears, who has the assignment on the colt from post 6 on Friday. Trixton is well represented by his blazingly fast son Battenberg in division two. Three qualifiers, including a 1:55.4 win, have Battenberg sharp and ready to race for trainer Joe Holloway and driver Dave Miller. The colt has displayed an affinity for the lead and the stamina to make it last thus far, he’ll begin from post six for owners Crawford Farms and Val D’Or Farms who spent $210,000 for the first foal of the dam Coffeecake Hanover at Harrisburg last fall. The filly division drew two equal fields of nine and they go as races 9 and 11, also for a $20,000 purse. Special Honor has a pair of baby race wins under her belt for Andy and Julie Miller. She converted perfect pocket steers by Andy each time for 1:58 wins with strong final quarters. Special Honor is a Father Patrick homebred, retained by Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Whispering Oaks has been tabbed as the 5-2 ML favorite in the very contentious second division. An impressive winner in two morning trials, Whispering Oaks then disappointed the pari-mutuel crowd in her first try at night, going off-stride as the 2-5 favorite. Her connections, driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Jimmy Takter are well versed in the merits of her sire Father Patrick as they campaigned that champion throughout his career. Brixton Medical, Herb Liverman and R A W Equine bought her from the Lexington Yearling Sale at a price of $100,000. Those who stick around until the 12th and final will be rewarded by seeing three legitimate Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace contenders in Captain Deo, American History and Hayden Hanover looking for a fine edge going into next week’s eliminations. In addition to the live Big M races on Saturday, many a watchful eye will be on simulcast screens tuned to racing at Pennsylvania's Pocono Downs (post time 7 p.m.), where the five-eighths mile track will serve up a powerhouse four-pack of stakes on Races 9-12, with each serving as a final prep before major events that will be contested at the Big M on Meadowlands Pace Night. The $300,000 James Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old fillies on the pace kicks off the stakes superfecta, followed by the $500,000 Max Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old pacers, $500,000 Ben Franklin for free-for-all pacers and $500,000 Earl Beal Memorial for 3-year-old trotters. The Lynch serves as a prelude to the Big M's Mistletoe Shalee, the Hempt to the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace, the Franklin to the William Haughton and the Beal to the Stanley Dancer. The four Meadowlands' events take place on July 14. Also on the Saturday simulcast menu is the $175,000 Cleveland Trotting Classic from Northfield Park, which features 2016 Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder. JUMP INTO THE POOL: The Big M's 50-Cent Pick-4 was popular as always last weekend as a total of just over $178,000 was poured into the pools over the two racing programs. Free program pages for the Meadowlands' Pick-4, courtesy of Track Master, are available on the Meadowlands' website ( and on the handicapping section at The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five's carryover has reached new heights. It now stands at $265,472 and is up for grabs in Friday night's finale. Both the Pick-4 and JSH5 offer low 15 percent takeouts. CALLING ALL MILLENNIALS: On Saturday night, college students can enter to win one of ten $1,000 college scholarships sponsored by Jeff and Paula Gural's Allerage Farm. Those showing a valid college ID will receive a voucher good for a $5 wager as well as a free program. They'll also a be a handicapping contest that night for those 18-30 years of age and the guaranteed prize pool of $5,000 is also being sponsored by the Gurals. Coming attractions... JULY 7: It's Fan Appreciation Night, and it's also wiener take all, as the Big M hosts its 1st annual Wiener Dog Races. For those who own a dachshund and want to enter, go to At the conclusion of the races, stay for a fantastic fireworks display. They'll be beer and food specials all night long. There is a special early post time of 6:35 p.m. The featured event are the eliminations for the Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. JULY 14: The Meadowlands' signature event, the $650,000E Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace for 3-year-olds, takes center stage. Post time is 6:35 p.m. Other stakes events on the card include the $400,000E Hambletonian Maturity for 4-year-old open trotters, $165,000E Mistletoe Shalee for 3-year-old fillies on the pace, $200,000E Golden Girls for filly and mare pacers 3-years-old-and-up, $250,000E Del Miller Memorial for 3-year-old fillies on the trot (divisions), $320,000E Stanley Dancer Memorial for 3-year-old open trotters (divisions) and $425,000E William Haughton Memorial for open pacers 3-years-old-and-up. AUGUST 4: Harness racing's signature event, the $1 million Hambletonian, brings the best 3-year-old trotters to not only the Big M, but to a national television audience (on the CBS Sports Network). Post time is noon for harness racing's biggest day. By Dave Little & Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands    

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - After finishing a solid second and third, respectively, in his two preliminaries, Mike's Powerhouse upped his game Saturday night, saving his best effort for the Caramore Series Final, winning the $20,850 harness racing feature at the Meadowlands for non-winners of $20,000 in 2018 on the pace. Driver Vinny Ginsburg, who won three races on the evening, put the 6-year-old gelded son of Camluck on the lead around the first turn from the rail and hit the quarter in :26.2. The eventual winner got a :57.3 breather through the middle half as Rockinwiththebest, the slight 3-2 favorite, popped out the four hole at the three-eighths and inched his way toward the leader on the rim. But Mike's Powerhouse brought just enough through a final quarter of :26.4 to hold off the late-charging Astor, who finished a neck back. Rockinwiththebest held on for third. Byby Landon, the slight 3-2 second choice, was blocked in the pocket and had to settle for fifth. Mike's Powerhouse returned $11.80 to win as the third choice in the wagering and completed the mile in a lifetime-best 1:50.4 for trainer Vincent Fusco Jr. RED MAN, BLACK INK: Driver Eric Abbatiello continued to endear himself to value players Saturday, guiding one 6-1 shot and a 9-2 chance to victory lane. This after his 22-1 score on the Friday card. FAVES NOT FAB: After post-time choices went only 2-for-9 on the Friday program, the chalk players probably felt they were due for a big night Saturday, but it wasn't to be. The first 10 chalks failed before Music Is Art clicked at 4-5 in the finale. For the race week, favorites went 3-for-20 (15 percent). A LITTLE MORE: Wagering was down when compared to the comparable card from a year ago, with short fields the main culprit. During the course of the night, four fields had but six betting interests at post time. On last year's card, the average numbers of starters per race was 8.2. This year, it was 7.2. Last year, the total wagered was $2,229,350. This year, it was $1,878,057, a decrease of 15.8 percent. ... One lucky player betting into the Elite Turf Club hub raked the pot in the Early 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five. He or she who held the only ticket with the winning combination of 1-8-6-2-5 in the ninth race cashed in for $16,154. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $265,472. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Friday at 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It has been a long time between drinks for harness racing's 2015 Hambletonian champion Pinkman, but his extended wait to return to the winner's circle is finally over. The Jimmy Takter trainee, who last won on May 29, 2016 in a stakes event in Sweden, took the featured conditioned trot Friday night at the Meadowlands in 1:52 by a half-length over Misslarose. Opulent Yankee finished third. Prior to his score in Sweden, Pinkman's previous North American victory came in the October 10, 2015 Kentucky Futurity, two months after he hoisted Hambletonian hardware. Friday night, driver Andy McCarthy was in the sulky as Pinkman, who never saw the rail, was in a live second-over flow heading for three-quarters. He tipped off his cover in midstretch and rolled to his 19th career win in 42 starts for owners C. Takter, John and Jim Fielding, J. McClelland and H. Liverman. Lifetime, the 6-year-old gelded son of Explosive Matter has earned $2.65 million. As the 3-1 second choice in the wagering, Pinkman returned $8.00 to win. Lindy The Great, the 3-2 public choice, broke stride before the quarter. HAMBO HOPEFULS: The Paula Wellwood-trained Southwind Chrome crushed an overmatched field in a non-winners of two earlier on the card. The Hambletonian eligible, a son of Chapter Seven, was driven by Scott Zeron and completed the mile in 1:54 as the 1-5 favorite for his first-ever win in his fifth start. Zephyr Kronos, trained and driven by Takter, won a non-winners of three later in the evening. The son of Ready Cash, another Hambo eligible, scored on the front end in 1:53 as the 5-1 third choice in the wagering. A LITTLE MORE: The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, upping the carryover to $262,148. ... One lucky player walked away with $11,470 after being the only bettor to survive eight legs in the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-9. ... All-source wagering on the nine-race card totaled $1,767,338. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday at 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

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