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DAYTON, OH. - Hollywood Dayton Raceway is pleased to report a whopping 52% increase in total all-source wagering on its recently-concluded 2017 live harness racing meeting.   Because there were 76 days in the track's fourth annual meet, six more than in 2016, the average daily increase was 42% in a year-over-year comparison.   The numbers are particularly impressive in light of the recent industry report that total wagering on United States harness racing fell by 4.4% in 2017. That same report indicated that total purses across the country were up 2.35% last year.   Total purses at Hollywood Dayton's 2017 meet exceeded $8.5 million, for an average of $112,000 per program, an 18% increase over 2016.   Highlight of the meet were the Grand Circuit races in September, the $167,000 Dayton Trotting Derby and the $140,000 Dayton Pacing Derby.   Pasithea Face S (Tim Tetrick) set a new 1:53 track record for trotting mares when she bested males Crazy Wow and JL Cruze in the feature trot.   Rockin Ron (Matt Kakaley) bested Dealt A Winner and Missile J to cop the pace in 1:50.2.   Hollywood Dayton looks forward to the 2018 meet which opens on September 10, with both the Dayton Trotting and Pacing Derbies featured on Friday, September 28.   Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - Manhattan Beach won the $18,500 Open Pace; Kayne Kauffman and Jeff Brewer were crowned leading driver and leading trainer; and starter Mike Woebkenberg was presented with an appreciation blanket for his yeoman efforts promoting harness racing--all as the curtain dropped on Hollywood Dayton Raceway's fourth meet, its most successful to date. Driver Trace Tetrick got Manhattan Beach on the muscle early and was determined to make the balance of the full field play catch-me-if-you-can.  After posting a :27.1 first quarter despite single digit temperatures, Tetrick throttled the eventual winner to a :56 halfway point.  Forced to speed up by the first-over attack of Starlite Kid (Trevor Smith), Manhattan Beach tripped the three-quarters beam in 1:23.4 and then scooted home a clear winner in 1:52.3.  Heavy favorite Enoch (Chris Page) enjoyed a pocket ride throughout but could never really threaten, settling for runnerup honors.  Starlite Kid held for third. Manhattan Beach is a 4-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere owned by John McGill and Brian Carsey and trained by Walter Haynes Jr.  It was the sixth seasonal win from 24 2017 starts and left the winner less than $1000 shy of a $100,000 year. Kayne Kauffman won his first Hollywood Dayton dash title, although he has previously won meets at nearby Miami Valley Raceway and the old Lebanon Raceway.  The 39-year-old reinsman won 120 races during the 76 day meet, good for purse earnings of over $850,000.  Career-wise, Kauffman is nearing 3000 wins and eclipsed the $17 million earnings plateau on closing night. Jeff Brewer notched his second Hollywood Dayton training title by sending out 41 winners in 210 starts during the recently concluded meet.  Brewer is closing in rapidly on the $10 million earnings achievement and has accumulated 1,921 lifetime training wins.  2017 was his first million dollar season with $1,119,366 deposited into his stable owners' coffers. Starter Mike Woebkenberg was surprised with a handmade commemorative blanket to thank him for his tireless efforts to promote harness racing.  Fans Ann and Ray Lufkin presented the blanket with the aid of special guest Roger Huston, Deb Noble and members of the local drivers colony. Hollywood Dayton enjoyed competitive racing with full fields, excellent track conditions, several new track records and an impressive increase in average daily handle during 2017.  The management at Hollywood Dayton wants to thank all the owners, trainers, drivers and caretakers who participated in the racing program this season.  We look forward to September, 2018, when our fifth season of live racing gets underway. Gregg Keidel    

DAYTON, OH. - Juslikeaqueen continued her every-other-week winning tradition on Friday night (Dec. 29) during Hollywood Dayton Raceway's penultimate program of their 2017 harness racing  meet. The 3-year-old Palone Ranger-sired filly captured the $18,500 Fillies and Mares Open Pace following an hour-long delay to grade snow off the racing surface. Jerseylicious (Tyler Smith), making her 100th career start with $775,540 banked, was first to spring off the gate taking the field to the first quarter in :27.1. Driver Jeremy Smith tucked Juslikeaqueen into the garden spot followed by Amazing Arya (Kayne Kauffman) and Safe From Terror (Chris Page), the diminutive mare trying for her 23rd win of the season which would have given her the distinction as the winningest horse in North America in 2017. Juslikeaqueen moved to the front before the :56.4 half and was able to remain there at the 1:25.2 third stanza and the 1:54.3 finish line. It was the winner's fourth victory in her last eight starts with the triumphs coming on alternating starts. Juslikeaqueen was claimed for $21,250 early in the Hollywood Dayton season, which commenced in September and has won seven starts for new owner Antonia Storer in 3-1/2 months. With her 11th seasonal score, Juslikeaqueen's bounty this season grew to $98,120 after a lackluster freshman season with just four starts, no wins and $4200 in earnings. She is trained by Daniel Maier. Jerseylicious held for second with Diamondtequilashot (John DeLong) garnering the show dough. The final program of the Hollywood Dayton race meet is Saturday night (Dec. 30) with a 6:15 post time. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - Night Pro, one of the Midwest's most stellar harness racing open ranks performers over the past four years, reached the winner's circle again Saturday night (Dec. 23) at Hollywood Dayton Raceway. The 7-year-old Pro Bono Best stud captured the $18,500 Open Handicap Pace for his 12th seasonal win and 53rd from 107 starts in his career. He has raced his entire life for owner-trainer Dale Decker, who has now banked $834,647 due to Night Pro's efforts. Driver Chris Page took advantage of one of Night Pro's best recent post positions (3-hole) to sprint immediately to the front of the field. Finding no challengers in the early going, Page throttled the 3-5 favorite back through a pair of pedestrian fractions. Following :28 and :56.2 clockings, however, Page pushed the pedal to the metal and Night Pro responded with a :55 back half to stop the final timer in 1:51.2 on a 32-degree evening. Starlite Kid (Trevor Smith) benefitted from a second-over trip behind first up Boys Round Here (Kayne Kauffman) to rally for a runnerup finish, but never really threatened the winner. A fast-closing Manhattan Beach (Trace Tetrick) came from sixth at the half to garner the show dough. Driver Jason Brewer scored a "Grand Slam" on his final program for 2017. The red and black clad reinsman triumphed with four horses from his father Jeff's red-hot stable. The Brewer's winners were CC's Desire (1:53.2, $5.60 to win), Lyons Jimmydean (1:52.2, $7.00), Hezabluechipboy N (1:52.2, $10.60) and J J M Jet Set (1:53.3, $12.20). The Brewer clan will be closing out the year enjoying a well-deserved week vacation in Aruba. Hollywood Dayton's final week of the meet will feature a Tuesday matinee at 2:15 and 6:15 evening programs on Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. Gregg Keidel    

DAYTON, OH. - Nine-year-old Cantab Lindy captured the $18,500 Open Trot at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Thursday night (Dec. 21), winning for the 41st time and inching closer to $500,000 in harness racing career earnings. What is unique about this story is that the son of Cantab Hall did not race at two, only made a handful of starts at three, and has never raced in a stakes race in his life. Additionally, he has made all 172 of his lifetime starts for owner-trainer Brent Davis of Zanesville, Ohio, who purchased him (with a bad ankle) after he failed to make it to the races as a freshman. "He's done it the hard way," exclaimed Davis. "I've never made a stakes payment on him because he was still a maiden until early in his 4-year-old season. He blossomed quickly from there, though, as he rose through the ranks from a maiden to an open trotter in a four-month span back in 2012. He's raced in opens or very high conditions most of the time since then." Davis, who is currently maintaining a five horse stable with the help of his dad Mac, has had other good horses through the years, but none quite this good. He trained an Amish reclamation project called Dino Trevor years back, a trotter who banked over $300,000. But Cantab Lindy now has earned $484,357 for Davis and is still going strong. In the latest victory, driver Tyler Smith left quickly from the 8-hole, relenting only to Another Breath (Randy Tharps) who tripped the first quarter mile beam in :28.1. After Another Breath reach the half of top in :57, Cantab Lindy was out and rolling to stick his head in front at the 1:25.1 three-quarter station. A :29.2 final panel was plenty good enough to hold off Mugshot Man (Kyle Ater) and Another Breath when he reached the wire in 1:54.3. Because he hadn't won in his previous five starts, the winner was dispatched at 12-1 odds and returned $27.60 to his faithful. Those that solved the exacta received $131.80 for $2, while 50-cent trifecta players got a healthy $436.70 return. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - Enoch made the most of his second start at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Saturday (Dec. 16), cruising to a harness racing victory in the $18,500 Open Handicap Pace in 1:51.1. Driver Chris Page fired the 4-year-old son of Panspacificflight from the gate and other than momentarily relenting to My Hero Ron (Tyler Smith) nearing the :27 quarter mile mark controlled the pace the rest of the way. Posting subsequent fractions of :56.1 and 1:23.2 before tacking on the :27.4 final split, Enoch held My Hero Ron at bay while Starlite Kid (Trevor Smith) and Night Pro (Dale Decker) dead-heated for third in the weekly feature race. Dispatched at 8-5 odds, Enoch paid $5.20 to win with the exacta returning $41.80. Enoch now has 15 career wins and $166,590 in earnings. He is trained by Ron Burke for Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, P Collura and Frank Baldachino. Page had three earlier winners on the Saturday program, including Burke stablemate Endeavors Pride who captured a $20,000 claimer in 1:52.2. His other trips to the winner's circle were with Rolling Going Gone for trainer Doug Hinklin and Vandy's Magic from the Steve Carter barn. Gregg Keidel  

DAYTON, OH. - Colorful Sky gave Aaron Merriman, America's leading harness racing dash driver, his fourth win of the night at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Friday (Dec. 15) capturing the $18,500 Mares Open Pace in 1:52.1. It was the seventh win on the season for the daughter of Skydancer Hanover, increasing her 2017 earnings to $69,262 for owner Grant Wilfong. Merriman took no chances in this race, putting Colorful Sky on the lead for the first time in her last eight starts. She seemed comfortable throughout posting fractions of :27.3, :56.3 and 1:23.3 before sealing the deal with a :28.3 final panel, holding off last week's feature winner Juslikeaqueen (Jeremy Smith), who raced first-over the entire second lap, and fast-closing Amazing Arya (Kayne Kauffman). Colorful Sky paid $7.20 to win with the exacta returning $36.80. Merriman swept the daily double to open the card, winning with trotter Mickey's House (1:57.4, $5.20) from the innermost post position and pacer Boots Off (1:56.2, $6.40) from the outermost post. His other victory came behind favored $20,000 claiming pacer P L Fighter (1:52.1, $4.20) a race before Colorful Sky's impressive triumph. Driver Jason Brewer notched a hat trick on the program, winning with a trio of horses from his father Jeff Brewer's stable. The Brew Crew scored with Lyons Jimmydean, owned by Chupp Racing, Pan Luis Obispo, owned by Jamie Cornett, and Kaitlyn Akeeper for the partnership of Chris Choros, Eleven Star Stables and Leander Schwartz. Gregg Keidel  

DAYTON, OH. - It had been three weeks since Churita last raced, but the layoff didn't seem to bother her a bit. Churita, a lightly raced harness racing 5-year-old Airzoom Lindy mare, bested the best male trotters in southern Ohio for the second straight time at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Thursday night (Dec. 14). In just her 20th start of the year, Churita trotted past a full field of open trotters for trainer-driver Matt Rheinheimer to garner her half of the $18,500 purse with a winning 1:55.3 mile. Rheinheimer ducked his prize mare off the gate, getting away last from the outermost post position. He probably felt his goose was cooked when he saw pedestrian fractions of :28.2 and :58 put up by pacesetter Fantasy League (Tyler Smith), who eventually finished third. Churita was at the back of the double-tiered field at the half, but swung three-wide and was moved up to fifth at the 1:26.2 three quarter mile marker. With the quickest final split of all, however, she picked up adversaries one at a time through the stretch to prevail. Dispatched at 9-2 odds, Churita returned $11.60 to her backers while the exacta with runnerup Mugshot Man (Kyle Ater) kicked back $66.60. It was the ninth victory of the season for Churita and raised her 2017 bankroll to $148,518. Career-wise the winner has earned $771,710 in just 66 starts, a very impressive $11,693 lifetime average per start. She Is owned by Porterproffesionalservice of Michigan. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - Guatemala native Edgar Herrera fell in love with race horses shortly after his family moved to Illinois when he was 14 years old. His father found regular work on the backstretches of Chicago's tracks and it wasn't long before Edgar started cleaning stalls and gradually learning the harness racing ropes too. When the affable 27-year-old got an opportunity to move to Ohio with trainer Bob Phillips two years ago, he was anxious to spread his wings. In addition to his normal caretaker barn duties, Herrera serves as Phillips' second trainer and shipper as well. While Edgar appreciates his regularly weekly stipend for all his hard work, he is especially grateful for the chance Phillips gave him to drive enough qualifying races to earn his provisional drivers license last April. While being a full-time catch-driver is not on his bucket list, finding his way to the winner's circle at least once has been a goal he has dreamed about often. The dream came true on Monday afternoon (Dec. 11) at Hollywood Dayton Raceway when Herrera guided the trotter Donnas Dream to a 1:57.3 gate-to-wire triumph in a $10,000 condition/claiming event. The 3-year-old filly from the Philllips Stable was sent directly to the front from the innermost post position and held off Bosston Tahoe (Jason Brewer) and Speed N Home (Kyle Wilfong) in the stretch, prompting a wide grin on Herrera's face that was still evident an hour later. "I may just retire from driving now," joked Edgar, "because I don't want this feeling to ever go away. I can't believe it!" It took Herrera 52 drives to get his initial score, but the wait was well worth it. "I'm glad my parents moved us here. I love America! You can find work doing something you like, and make your dreams come true." For Donnas Dream, it was her sixth lifetime victory and boosted her career earnings to $123,853. The daughter of Power Play is owned by the Blackfoot Farms of Illinois. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. – Despite a furious late rally by the Hoosier’s Sam Widger, who captured the final three heats of the six-race “Hoosiers vs. Buckeyes Driving Challenge”, the harness racing Buckeyes eeked out a 351-333 victory on Saturday night (Dec. 9) at Hollywood Dayton Raceway.   The Ohioans now enjoy a 2-1 edge, and ‘bragging rights’ for the next 12 months, after the third year of the annual contest.  Kayne Kauffman scored wins in the initial two legs and Dan Noble was victorious in the third division for the Buckeyes. Five of Hoosier Park’s top reinsmen and the top five dash winners in the current meet at Hollywood Dayton squared off in 10-horse fields.  The scoring system used was 30 points for a win, then 24-18-14-11-8-5-3-1-0 for second through tenth place finishes.  In addition to Widger, the Hoosiers were represented by Trace Tetrick, John DeLong, Ricky Macomber and Brandon Bates.  Kauffman was joined on the Buckeye squad by Josh Sutton, Dan Noble, Tyler Smith and Kyle Ater. Widger’s 122 point total was the best individual score, followed by Kauffman (115), Bates (69), Noble (63), Sutton and Smith (60 each), Tetrick 57,  Macomber and Ater (53 each) and DeLong (32). The competition produced a mix of favorites and longshots with the outcome hanging in the balance until the final strides of the final race.  Winning horses were Eight Seconds (1:55, $23.80), Brookstone (1:53.3, $XXXXX), Mike’s Hope (1:53.2, $8.80),  E R Rudy (1:53, $XXX), Ideal Kiss (1:53.3, $6.80) and Boys Round Here (1:51.4, $14.80). Hollywood Gaming provided $2500 in prize money for the Challenge with the Ohio Harness Horsemens Association chipping in $500.  For the third consecutive year the drivers on both squads agreed to donate the entire $3000 prize pool to worthwhile charities.  2017 recipients of $1500 each were Dayton Firefighters Local 136, who provides toys for needy children at Christmas; and Saint John The Baptist Church, who provides warm clothing to needy adults during the winter months. Gregg Keidel   

DAYTON, OH. - The $17,500 Open Distaff Pace at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Friday night (Dec. 8) proved to be a buzz-kill for those who say young horses can't compete with seasoned harness racing veterans. Two of the three 3-year-old fillies in the full 10-horse field of southwest Ohio's finest mares finished 1-2 in the 1:53 mile on a cool (26 degree) evening. The betting public apparently didn't like the youngsters chances either as the 6-1 winner Juslikeaqueen (Jeremy Smith) paid $14 and coupled with 17-1 runnerup Firstup (Kyle Ater) the exacta kicked back $151. Favored American Girl (Trace Tetrick) rallied for third to round out a $674.80 $2 trifecta. Ellies Jet N (Chris Page) worked hard to get the first call at the :26.4 quarter-mile mark, followed by Rock Me Baby (Josh Sutton) and Firstup. Addy's Way (Dan Noble) launched a first-over bid before the :56.2 half-mile station with Juslikeaqueen in tow in the outer flow. Ellies Jet N stayed game through the 1:24.1 three quarters, but the :27.4 third panel left her helpless in the stretch. Addys Way did get a brief moment in front but was swallowed up by the first three finishers through the lane. Juslikeaqueen now sports ten wins in her sophomore season, including three in the open ranks from her last five tries. The daughter of Palone Ranger earned just $4200 in three winless starts in her first season at the races, but has banked $84,245 thus far in 2017. She is owned by Antonia Storer and trained by Dan Maier. Saturday night's card at Hollywood Dayton will feature the 3rd annual Hoosiers vs. Buckeyes Driver's Challenge pitting five of Hoosier Park's top reinsmen against Dayton's five leaders in the current meet dash derby. The Buckeyes won the inaugural event in 2015, but the Hoosiers turned the tables and triumphed in 2016. This grudge match will be decided over six races of spirited, instense direct head-to-head competition. The visiting Hoosier squad is comprised of Trace Tetrick, Sam Widger, John DeLong, Ricky Macomber and Brandon Bates. The five Buckeyes trying to defend their home turf will be Josh Sutton, Dan Noble, Kayne Kauffman, Tyler Smith and Kyle Ater. First race post time is 6:15 p.m. The Hoosiers vs. Buckeyes contest races are 2, 4, 6, 7, 9 and 11. Gregg Keidel  

DAYTON, OH. - Milford's Z Tam surged in deep stretch to capture his first harness racing $18,500 Open Handicap Trot at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Thursday night (Dec. 7). Driver Dan Noble floated out from the 8-hole behind the starting car, settling third over in the outer flow when the :28.4 opening split was posted by Jesse's Promise (Kayne Kauffman), with Cantab Lindy (Tyler Smith) and Another Breath (Randy Tharps) in hot pursuit. Another Breath moved first-up prior to the :57.4 halfway point with Impressive Chief (Josh Sutton) right on his back. When Another Breath nudged ahead nearing the three-quarter pole, clocked in 1:26, Impressive Chief swung a lane further out to challenge while favored Gloire Dream (Trace Tetrick) was forced wider yet to make his bid for victory. A four-wide stretch duel ensued with Milford's Z Tam finding the quickest closing step between horses for the 9-1 upset triumph in 1:55.2, despite a 24 degree temperature. The photo finish camera couldn't separate Another Breath and Gloire Dream, who dead-heated for place; while Impressive Chief was a close-up fourth. Z Tam Stables LLC owns the winner, a 4-year-old black gelded son of Swan For All. It was the 11th career win for Milford's Z Tam and boosted his lifetime bounty to $231,724. Jim Arledge Jr. is his trainer. Gregg Keidel        

DAYTON, OH. - The Ohio State Buckeyes won't be crowned national collegiate football champions this season (although they did win the Big Ten title!), but that won't stop the harness racing "Buckeyes" at Hollywood Dayton Raceway from trying to assert their dominance. The field is set for the third annual "Hoosiers vs. Buckeyes" Drivers Challenge to be contested this Saturday night, Dec. 9.  Five of Hoosier Park's leading dash winners will make the trip from Anderson, Indiana to Dayton to face the five winningest drivers at the current Hollywood meet. Representing the Hoosiers, who won last year's second edition of the annual contest to even the score at one win per state, will be Trace Tetrick, Sam Widger, John DeLong, Ricky Macomber and Brandon Bates. The Ohio squad is comprised of Josh Sutton, Dan Noble, Kayne Kauffman, Tyler Smith and Kyle Ater, who edged Chris Page out for the final spot.  Both reinsmen were tied for fifth in the current meet dash derby at the deadline following last Saturday's races with 53 wins and 49 place finishes, thus the tie-breaker became show finishes where Ater prevailed. The contest is comprised of six races in which all the participants will battle head-to-head, with each squad having odd numbered post positions in half the races and even in the others.  Each individual driver's post positions will add up to 33, putting all the participants on approximate equal footing prior to the horses being drawn into the races by the USTA's automated random post positions feature. The scoring system to be used is heavily weighted for on-the-board finishes, but does allow for valuable points based on fourth through ninth place finishes as well.  A winner gets 30 points, followed by 24 for second, 18 for third, then 14-11-8-5-3-1 for the other finishers. A total of $3000 in prize money is being offered by Hollywood Gaming and the Ohio Harness Horsemens Association.  In the first two years, the drivers from both squads agreed to donate the entire pool to charities that provide both warm clothing and Christmas toys to area families in need. Among the 2017 recipients will be Dayton Fire Department Local 136, who provides EMT and ambulance services for every live racing program at Hollywood Dayton, for their Christmas For Kids campaign. Washington Court House, Ohio, native Tyler Smith, who plied his trade at Hoosier Park and was a member of the "Hoosiers" in last season's contest, returned to Ohio in 2017 and is looking forward to being a "Buckeye" this time around.  "I made alot of good friends in Indiana over the last few years, but I've always been a Buckeye at heart," he mused.  "I know all the Hoosier drivers very well and hope they have a good time while here, but I want the 'bragging rights' associated with this challenge staying right here where they belong, in OH-IO." Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - Harness racing driver Kayne Kauffman, who started the day with 77 wins during the first 52 days of the current Hollywood Dayton Raceway meet, strengthened his hold on third place in the local dash derby with a handful (5) of victories on the Monday (Nov. 27) matinee. The 39-year-old red and white clad reinsman was met by five different trainers when he returned to the winner's circle with his winning charges. Kayne captured the lidlifter on the 14-race matinee program with favored Friskie's Angel, who won a $4000 claimer in 1:55 for trainer Chris Short, kicking back $3.80 to her supporters. Two races later, Kauffman guided Knockemstiff Nicki (1:56.2, $5.00) to a score in a non-winners of two condition/claimer for conditioner Steve Carter. Feel The Heat (1:55.1, $30.60), from the Sam Coven barn, upset a field of $5000 claimers for Kauffman's next triumph. Next up in Kauffman's victory string was Onestrong Magarita (1:56.1, $17.60) who topped a field of non-winners of two fillies and mares for trainer Ray Farmer. Jesse's Promise (1:55.4, $13.40) completed the reinsman's big day, trotting past a field of top conditioned horses for trainer Mervin Schmucker. Kauffman now sports 2795 career wins, providing owners of horses he has driven with almost $17 million. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - A grueling first-over trip didn't deter harness racing favored Manhattan Beach from wearing down longshot Dreamfair Mesa in midstretch to capture the featured $18,500 Open Pace at Hollywood Dayton Raceway on Saturday night (Nov. 25). Driver Trace Tetrick floated the 4-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere from the gate, content to ride fifth through the opening quarter in :27.2. Just past that point, however, he sent the Walter Haynes Jr.-trainee on his way. Manhattan Beach obliged by moving up to third on the outside at the :56.1 halfway point, then second and pressuring the leader at the 1:23.4 third split. Although still outside around the final bend, Tetrick's charge had enough pace left in the lane to finally pass pacesetter Dreamfair Mesa (Josh Sutton) and hold off late-charging Dalhousie Dave (Kyle Ater) in 1:51.4. As the odds-on choice, Manhattan Beach paid $3.60. Combined with 23-1 Dreamfair Mesa the exacta kicked back $55.60; while the $2 trifecta including 6-1 Dalhousie Dave was worth $220.80. John McGill and Brian Carsey own the winner, who has faced national free-for-all stars in Grand Circuit stakes much of the season. He now sports ten lifetime wins and a career bankroll of $658,974. Gregg Keidel

DAYTON, OH. - It was obvious the harness racing bettors thought Jerseylicious was the best in Hollywood Dayton's Mares Open Pace on Friday night (Nov.24) when they sent her off at prohibitive 1-9 odds. But no one except driver Tyler Smith, trainer Tim Lane and owner Bruce Trogdon (Emerald Highlands Farm) knew just how much the best! All the 7-year-old daughter of Western Ideal did was break the track record for pacing mares with a 1:49.3 romp, the first sub 1:50 mile by a female in the four year history of the five-eighths mile oval. Only State Treasurer (1:48.4) and Wiggle It Jiggleit (1:49.1), the last two winners of the Grand Circuit Dayton Pacing Derby, have ever traveled faster at Hollywood. "She's a very good horse," exclaimed a jubilant Tyler Smith in an obvious understatement.. After a brief give-and-go maneuver with Stirling Euphoria at the :26.4 quarter, Jerseylicious enjoyed a three to four length advantage over the field through middle fractions of :54.1 and 1:21.3 before cruising home without urging in :28 to establish the new track record. "When I saw the 1:21.3 I figured I'd give a :50 mile a shot," said Smith, "because I know Mr. Trogdon wanted that for breeding purposes. The nice part is she did it on her own, I never even considered pulling her earplugs." Trainer Tim Lane wasn't overly surprised either. "We always knew she had it in her. She has come close to breaking :50 a couple times and is likely headed to the first book of Fear The Dragon in the Spring. An offspring from the mating of these two prized Emerald Highlands possessions should be very, very special." Jerseylicious now sports 27 wins from 97 career starts and has earned $774,540, to go with her new 1:49.3 record. Gregg Keidel  

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