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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - After a nine-week hiatus that began at the conclusion of a highly successful Hambletonian Day, live harness racing returns to the Meadowlands on Friday night (Oct. 11). During October and November, live action will be conducted on Fridays and Saturdays. December will see Thursdays added to the schedule. All live harness programs will have a post time of 7:15 p.m. There will be special racing "doubleheaders" during October as Monmouth Park will conduct turf racing on the Meadowlands' grass course. Racing fans can make it a full day at the Big M on October 11, 12, 18, 25 and 26, as the thoroughbreds will be in action with a 12:30 p.m. post before harness racing in the evening. JUICY STAKES: They'll be plenty of stakes action during the Big M's 2019 Fall Meeting as 2-year-olds will be in action in the Kindergarten Series. Preliminaries are slated for the first three weekends of the meet before four big-money finals - with purses totaling more than $700,000 - take place on Nov. 2. The action then heats up even more on Nov. 16, with eliminations for the Goldsmith Maid (2-year-old filly trot), Three Diamonds (2-year-old filly pace), Valley Victory (2-year-old colt trot) and Governor's Cup (2-year-old colt pace) before the biggest night of the fall takes place one week later with the finals for those four events - with purses in excess of $1.75 million - as well as the finals for four other huge contests, featuring some of the biggest equine stars in the game. The TVG Mare Trot (for a purse of $175,000), TVG Mare Pace ($175,000), TVG Open Trot ($350,000) and TVG Open Pace ($350,000) will also be offered on "Fall Final Four" Night on Nov. 23. Racing fans may recall the 2018 TVG Open Pace, which resulted in a dominant 1:48 score by McWicked to lock up Horse of the Year honors. SUPER SIMULCAST: The stars of every division will be on display at Woodbine at Mohawk Park as the 2019 Breeders Crown will be contested at Canada's top harness track. All Crown events will be simulcast to the Meadowlands. Eliminations will take place on Oct. 18 and 19 with the finals slated for Oct. 25 and 26. FREE POKER FRIDAY: Not only is live racing back, so are "Free Poker Fridays" at the Meadowlands. For those 21 years of age and older, free Texas Hold'em tournaments will be conducted in the Gallery, hosted by World Free Poker. Players can pre-register or walk-up. Games begin at 7 p.m. BET THE NFL, MLB PLAYOFFS: Bet all of the National Football League games as well as the Major League Baseball playoffs at the Big M in the FanDuel Sportsbook. Sit comfortably and watch all the action in the book or head over to Victory Sports Bar, where there are many places to watch the games while taking advantage of the many available drinking and dining options. From the Meadowlands Media Department  

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands will kick off the 2019 Fall Meet on Friday, October 11 with live harness racing on Friday and Saturday nights at 7:15 pm.   The Kindergarten series will resume with leg #4 on Friday with legs on the following two Fridays, leading up to the November 2 finals.   The double draw condition sheet for the weekend is available online and the box will close on Tuesday, October 8 at 9:00 am.   A new racing application is required to race the fall meet. They can be downloaded here, signed and faxed to (201) 460-4042.   Horsemen are encouraged to sign up for the Meadowlands text service to receive all current info on draws, important racing updates and special announcements.   Next qualifiers are Saturday, October 12. Those will be drawn on Wednesday, October 9 with a box close of 10:00 am.   You may reach the Racing office at (877) 782-2537.   From the Meadowlands Media Department      

Tioga Downs played host to the third leg of the Kindergarten Series Classic for 2-year-old harness racing pacers and trotters on Friday (September 13). All races were for a purse of $10,000. Captain Barbosa (Andrew McCarthy) cruises to victory in the Kindergarten race for pacing colts & geldings. Keystone Dash (Wally Hennessey) led to the first quarter in :27.0. Play The Ponies (David Miller) took control before hitting the half in :57.2. Captain Barbosa made his move on the backstretch and led to three-quarters in 1:24.1. Captain Barbosa, who is trained by Tony Alagna for owners Robert Leblanc, David Anderson, and Alagnafrankinthegym Stable, led by four lengths as they made the turn for home. He easily won in 1:52.2. Blank Stare (Jim Taggert Jr.) finished second with Ideal Perception (Matt Kakaley) getting third money. Captain Barbosa is a 2-year-old colt by Captaintreacherous-Swinging Beauty. It was his first career victory. All Rise (Fern Paquet Jr.) takes a victory in the Kindergarten series for trotting colts & geldings. Coventry Hall (Wally Hennessey) put up all the early fractions (:28.3, :59.0, 1:27.3). All Rise, who is trained by Homer Hochstetler for owners Connie Hochstetler, Robert Buddig and Allen Schwartz, took over as they made the turn for home. He would have to hold off the late charge of second place finisher Oversized (Matt Kakaley) to win in 1:57.3. Coventry Hall held on for third. All Rise is a 2-year-old colt by Conway Hall-Berdine Hanover. It was his second career win in eight starts. Winter Olympics (Wally Hennessy) is much the best in the Kindergarten series race for trotting fillies. Winter Olympics flew out of the gate and led to the first quarter in :28.2. She used a :30.2 second quarter to lead to the half in :58.4. She they hit three-quarters in 1:27.2. Winter Olympics , who is owned and trained by Ake Svanstedt, got slight pressure by second place finisher Allswell Hanover (Matt Kakaley) as they went around the final turn. Winter Olympics had plenty left in the tank as they reached the stretch. She won in a lifetime best of 1:56.2. Ready To Rock (David Miller) finished third. Winter Olympics is a 2-year-old filly Muscle Mass-Olympic Dreams. It was her second win in four lifetime starts. Anthem (David Miller) comes flying late to win the Kindergarten race for pacing fillies. JK Finendandy (Matt Kakaley) put up all the early numbers (:27.4, :57.2, 1:25.2). Love For Sail (Andrew McCarthy) took control as they reached the stretch. Anthem, who is owned by Cool Cat Racing and trained by R. Nifty Norman, was third in the three horse field. She went flying down the stretch and went by them both to win in a lifetime best of 1:54.4. Love For Sail was second best. Anthem is a 2-year-old filly by Sweet Low-Monkeys Can Sing. It was her second career win in seven lifetime starts. Truth And Liberty (Mike Simons) is a gate-to-wire winner in the $11,000 fillies & mares open 1. Truth And Liberty ($8.10) got the lead just before hitting the first quarter in :26.2. She was still the best hitting the half in :56.3 and three-quarters in 1:24.2. Truth And Liberty, who is trained by Simons and owned by Fairy Horsemother Stables, held off a late charge by second place finisher Gold Star Mysti to win in 1:53.0. Gigi From Fiji (Wally Hennessey) was third best. Truth And Liberty is a 7-year-old mare by Total Truth. It was her ninth win this season. She now has 44 career victories. Wally Hennessey drove four winners on the night. He picked up wins with Move Over Sis ($3.10), Starcasim ($8.70), Prairie Easter ($2.90), and Crius N Rock ($11.00). Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Saturday (September 14) with a 13 race card starting at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs    

Tioga Downs plays host to a leg of the Kindergarten Classic on Friday (September 13). They will feature freshmen harness racing pacers and trotters in four non-betting races. Each will race for a purse of $10,000. The first of the Kindergarten races features 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Trainer Tony Alagna will send two time winner Ideal Perception (Matt Kakaley) as well as Captain Barbosa (Andrew McCarthy) to the starting gate. Ideal Perception (American Ideal-Southwind Siren) has won two New York Excelsior A series races in his six lifetime starts. Captain Barbossa is a colt by Captaintreacherous-Swinging Beauty. He has won over $45,000 in his career with four seconds and a third in eight career starts. The second Kindergarten race is for freshmen trotting colts and geldings. The John Butenschoen trained Swipe Right (Mike Simons) has won two races in seven starts in 2019. He is a colt by Explosive Matter-Online Exclusive. Overised (Matt Kakaley) is the other two time winner in the field. Trained by George Ducharme, he is a colt by Explosive Matter-Afterimage. He is going for his third straight victory. The third Kindergarten race features 2-year-old trotting fillies. Winter Olympics (Wally Hennessey) looks to be the horse to beat. The filly by Muscle Mass-Olympic Dreams won a leg of the Ontario Sire Stakes at Woodbine Mohawk Park on August 9th. Trained by Ake Svanstedt, she also has a second place finish in just three lifetime starts. Her lifetime earnings are over $35,000. The last of four Kindergarten races features freshmen pacing fillies. The three horse field includes the Nancy Johansson trained Love For Sail (Captaintreacherous-West Side Glory) and JK Finendandy (American Ideal-JK Fine). Love For Sail (Andrew McCarthy) has a win, a second, and a third in four lifetime starts. JL Finendandy (Matt Kakaley) has two seconds in four career starts. They will take on the R. Nifty Norman trained Anthem (David Miller). The filly by Sweet Lou-Monkeys Can Sing has a win, two seconds, and a third in just six starts. The four non-betting races will be mixed in with the 13 pari-mutuel races on Friday. The Kindergarten 2 year old colt pace will take place in between pari-mutuel races one and two. The Kindergarten colt trot will be between pari-mutuel races two and three. The Kindergarten filly trot will run in between pari-mutuel races three and four. The Kindergarten filly pace will take place between pari-mutuel races four and five. Post time for this exciting card is 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com. by John Horne, for Tioga Downs                          

Tioga Downs will hold a double draw for this weekend on Tuesday, Sept 10 with a box close of 9:00am.   The third leg of the Kindergarten series will be raced on Friday and will be drawn tomorrow.   The condition sheet is available here   http://horsemen.ustrotting.com/conditionsheet.cfm?condition_sheet_id=73444   The Racing Office may be reached at 607-699-7688.   From Tioga Downs  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The early returns are in, and so far - as the Meadowlands harness racing driver colony is concerned - it's been all Andrew McCarthy, all the time. The 32-year-old native of Australia has 14 wins in just 50 starts through the first five weeks of the 2018-2019 Big M meeting. A pair of not-so-familiar-names - Dexter Dunn and Michael Merton - sit tied in the second spot with nine victories apiece. "The trainers that I drive for," said McCarthy as to why he's done so well to this point. "I've had some nice horses to drive. They make it a heck of a lot easier when you've got the best horse in the race." McCarthy has driven some of the stronger stock at the meeting thus far. He guided Muscle Diamond in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for trotters to a 1:52.2 score on Nov. 2, Escapetothebeach to victory in the $173,800 Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Nov. 3 in 1:51.3 and Caviart Ally to the winner's circle on Nov. 9 in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacing fillies and mares in 1:50.2. "Caviart Ally is really good right now," said McCarthy. "She's at the top of her game heading into the (Nov. 24) TVG final." McCarthy is listed to drive more talented stock during the upcoming race week at the Big M. He will team up once again with Muscle Diamond in Friday night's Preferred Handicap for trotters and will guide New York Sire Stakes champion Reigning Deo in an elimination for the Governor's Cup for 2-year-old colt pacers Saturday. As usual, racing will be conducted on Friday and Saturday with a first race post time of 7:15 p.m. JUMP IN THE POOL: The track's signature wager, the 50-Cent Pick-4, took plenty of green into its pools last weekend (Nov. 9-10). On Friday night, $67,610 was poured into the pot, while Saturday saw $76,382 in action. One Big M wager that continues to pay off well week in and week out is the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10, which returned $4,810 (8 of 10) on Friday and $4,451 (6 of 10) Saturday. Both bets feature low 15 percent take outs. Free track program pages are available at both www.playmeadowlands.com and www.ustrotting.com. FOILED AGAIN COMING TO BIG M: On Saturday, Nov. 24, Foiled Again, the richest Standardbred of all time, will be at the Meadowlands, but instead of racing, he'll be visiting with all of his fans. The veteran superstar will be posing for selfies in the Backyard during the live card. In addition, there will also be a special commemorative Foiled Again poster giveaway to all guests, which is available at the Players Club Desk beginning at 6 p.m. Foiled Again's visit comes on a huge night of racing, as the Big M will host both the Fall Final Four and TVG finals that evening. TWO PAIR A STRONG HAND: Last Saturday, driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke teamed up to win four times on the program while McCarthy made four winner's circle visits over the course of the weekend. From the Meadowlands Media Department

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Corey Callahan was a major player in the two Kindergarten Classic trotting events at the Meadowlands Saturday night, an evening that saw four Kindergarten finals for 2-year-olds with total purses at more than $780,000. 'The Captain' drove 1-9 favorite Seven Hills in the $221,540 colt and gelding trot, but after beginning his career with four powerful wins, the son of Muscle Hill-Southwind Maywood went off stride in the first turn, losing all chance. "He's still really immature," said Callahan. "Vinny (Ginsburg, driving Lucky Weekend) kind of crossed over on me and I had to grab hold of him a little bit and he made a break." That opened the door for 7-1 second-choice Reign Of Honor to break his maiden at a most opportune time. David Miller kept the gelded son of Father Patrick-Margarita Momma in a live cover flow, came alongside leader Divine Spirit at the top of the stretch, before powering past that foe to go on to a convincing 5¼-length score in 1:55.3. Memo was second with Reve Toujours third. "It definitely opened the race up," said Miller of the early break by the favorite. "And around the first turn I wasn't real happy with my spot. But I got cover past the half." Reign Of Honor, trained by Nifty Norman, returned $17.60 to his backers for owners Deo Valente Farms, Jennifer Dalton Stable and Tom Pontone. Callahan guided an upset winner in the $236,060 filly trot, steering 17-1 shot Stella Jane to victory lane in 1:54.4. Tim Tetrick blasted Sister's Promise away from the gate from post 10 and Callahan went with him from the eight hole. After making the lead at the quarter, Stella Jane yielded to Sister's Promise and the duo raced 1-2 around the track. Stella Jane vacated the pocket in mid-stretch and rolled to 2¾-length score in 1:54.4. Princess Deo rallied for second with Sister's Promise holding third. Global Pageant, the 9-5 favorite, went a tough first-over trip, wilted and finished eighth. Stella Jane, trained by John Butenschoen, returned $36.20 for owner Crawford Farms Racing. "She really has been good all year," said Callahan. "She's been handy, so we just shot out of there and everything worked out well. I had a lot of trot in the last turn." It was a case of too close to call in the Kindergarten Classic for filly pacers on a card that featured four Kindergarten finals for 2-year-olds at the Meadowlands Saturday night. Odds On St Lucie and Michelon's Filly finished in a dead heat in the $148,700 event in a mile that went in 1:52. Alkippe was a head back in third. Brett Miller sent 6-1 shot Odds On St Lucie to the top in search of her third straight series win. She would never relinquish the top. Even-money favorite Michelon's Filly started to inch her way toward the leader after popping out of the four hole at the half. Three-quarters was reached in 1:24.2 as Michelon's Filly and Marcus Miller continued to march closer while racing uncovered. Through the stretch, Michelon's Filly bravely continued on, and at the wire, the photo finish cameras could not separate the pair. Odds On St Lucie, a daughter of Sweet Lou-Shes Some Treasure, paid $5.20 to win for trainer Tony Alagna and owner Odds On Racing. She's now five-for-10 lifetime and has earnings of over $100,000. The Erv Miller-trained Michelon's Filly returned $2.60 for owners Ronald Michelon and Michael Anderson and now has six wins in 13 starts and also a bankroll that just breaks the six-figure barrier. "I thought I was out there way too long," said Marcus Miller of Michelon's Filly. "She paid me back for taking care of her in her last few starts. She was as game as possible. They were both digging right to the wire." Escapetothebeach went a perfect trip on the way to taking the $173,800 colts and geldings pace in 1:51.3. It was three-quarters of a length back to Mac's Power. Waterway was third while 8-5 favorite Southwind Ozzi finished last in the field of 10. Waterway and Brett Miller fired right to the top and cut out all of the fractions as Andy McCarthy sat right behind with Escapetothebeach. In deep stretch, Waterway bore out while weakening on the lead, allowing Escapetothebeach a pathway to victory. "He raced really good tonight," said McCarthy. "I got him to hustle out of there pretty good and I got the trip I wanted. He had a lot of pace. I was quite confident if I got out, I was the winner. I kept edging to the outside (in deep stretch) hoping I'd get room, but it wasn't coming, so I looked and it looked like it was starting to open up to the inside, so I switched him back there and he went right through." A son of Somebeachsomewhere-Shelliscape, Escapetothebeach returned $16.00 to his backers for trainer Alagna and owners Alagna & Inthegym, J. Sbrocco, R. Leblanc and W. Donovan, and now has three wins in 12 lifetime starts and earnings of $124,728. A LITTLE MORE: One lucky player became the second in as many nights to walk away with a $10,000 score in the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10. Friday night, the winner had to go 10-for-10 but on Saturday, all it took was five out of 10 to hit big. ... Yannick Gingras drove three winners on the card while Corey Callahan, Brett Miller and David Miller had two apiece. ... All-source wagering on the 11-race program reached a meet-best $2,539,969. ... Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

Chris Lakata hopes it's best to be "Lucky" this weekend at The Meadowlands. Lucky Weekend, trained by Lakata, starts from post eight with driver Vincent Ginsburg in Saturday's $221,540 Kindergarten Classic Series championship for 2-year-old male harness racing trotters at the Big M. The gelding, purchased last month by Richard Mishkin for $45,000 at the inaugural Lexington Selected Mixed Sale, has won five of nine races and is among the season's 10 fastest 2-year-old male trotters, with a mark of 1:54.2. He went off stride in his first start for his new connections on Oct. 12, but rebounded with a Kindergarten win a week later. He was scratched last week because of sickness. "There are a lot of horses that are sick now; it seems to be going around," Lakata said about Lucky Weekend, a son of Lucky Chucky-Weekend Vacation who was trained previously by Chuck Sylvester. "He seems to be better now. "He seems like a nice solid horse. He's got a great attitude and is a very happy horse. I really like everything about him. He was already on his way to looking good before we got him. He made a break the first week we raced him so we changed a couple things and he was really good his last start." The Meadowlands hosts four Kindergarten championships on Saturday. In addition to the final for 2-year-old male trotters there is the $236,060 final for 2-year-old female trotters, $173,800 final for 2-year-old male pacers, and $148,700 final for 2-year-old female pacers. Post time is 7:15 p.m. (EDT) for the program's first race. Lakata, a former longtime assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Ron Gurfein, is in his fourth year operating his own stable. His barn at Joie De Vie Farm in New Jersey typically numbers five to 10 horses. Lucky Weekend's appearance in the Kindergarten championship is Lakata's first trip to a Grand Circuit final with his own stable. "Some weeks are great, and some are not so great," said a laughing Lakata, who grew up near Saratoga and began working with horses there after graduating from high school. "Sometimes you think you're a genius, and other times you look in the mirror and ask yourself if you know what you're doing. I've been doing it all my life, so I'm used to it. "I don't think I could work indoors in an office. As soon as I started (with the horses) I liked it. You're around all kind of people and they all blend together. It's a lot of fun." Lucky Weekend faces a field that includes 4-for-4 Seven Hills, trained by John Butenschoen, and Divine Spirit, trained by Brett Pelling. The horses, which were tied atop the Kindergarten standings, both enter the final off back-to-back wins in the series. This will be Lucky Weekend's final start of the year. "I think (Lucky Weekend) is as good as the others in there," Lakata said. "We'll find out. I hope he's as good this week as he was in his last start. He should be OK." For Saturday's complete entries, click here. For the Kindergarten standings, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The first weekend of November at the Meadowlands brings the first stakes finals action of the 2018-2019 meeting, and in addition, simulcast players will get to watch and wager on the Breeders' Cup World Championships, which will be held at Louisville's storied Churchill Downs. On Friday, Churchill's 10-race program gets underway at 12:55 p.m., with the first of five Breeders' Cup races slated to go off at 3:21 p.m. The final BC event of the day - the $2 million Juvenile - finds trainer Bob Baffert with the one to beat, 8-5 early favorite Game Winner. Post time is 6:05 p.m. Just 70 minutes later, the live 10-race harness card gets underway, featuring Pappy Go Go shooting for his third win in a row taking on some tough customers in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for trotters in the third race. Saturday morning at 10:45 a.m., a spectacular 12-race program at Churchill kicks off, featuring nine Breeders' Cup events, the first of which has a post time of noon. The biggest race of the weekend - the $6 million Breeders' Cup Classic - has a post time of 5:44 p.m. Accelerate, off three straight romps against Grade 1 stock, is the morning-line 5-2 choice. That evening, the 11-race harness program begins at 7:15 p.m. and features four finals of the Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-olds, with purses that total almost $900,000. As always, the Big M will offer it's 50-Cent Pick-5 (which has a guaranteed pool of $25,000) as well as the track's signature 50-Cent Pick-4 ($50,000 promise). Both bets have a low 15 percent takeout. Free Program pages are available on the handicapping tab at ustrotting.com as well as at playmeadowlands.com. McWICKED GOOD NEWS: Trainer Casie Coleman has announced on Facebook that Breeders Crown champion and Horse of the Year favorite McWicked will be returning for his 8-year-old season in 2019 despite interest from multiple breeding farms. He'll conclude his 2018 campaign in the TVG Final at the Meadowlands on November 24. THE 'DUNN' UNDER WONDER: Australia native Dexter Dunn has been killing it of late, driving three winners not only last Saturday night but on the previous Saturday evening as well. ... Over the same span, Monticello regular Mike Merton has guided five horses to victory lane. ... A pair of trainers had triples last weekend: Tony Alagna on Friday and Bob Lounsbury on Saturday. PARTY ON: November marks the five-year anniversary of the opening of the new Meadowlands $100 million state-of-the-art grandstand. Patrons will get to join in on the fun as the track will offer specials all month long. WHHC QUALIFIER SATURDAY: The first of six Meadowlands qualifiers for the World Harness Handicapping Championship presented by DerbyWars.com is this Saturday night. The qualifier has a $200 total fee ($100 entry plus a $100 real-money bankroll). The format requires players to bet a minimum of $10 win wagers on 10 Meadowlands races (Players can bet more than 10 races). The top two finishers will earn spots in the WHHC with prize money to be paid out to the top 10 finishers. Players can register on-site Saturday up until 7:15 p.m. From the Meadowlands Media Department  

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Driver Vinny Ginsburg and trainer Tony Alagna were the big stars at the Meadowlands Friday night, as each scored three times on the 10-race program. The potent pair teamed up to win twice on the card, first with Odds On Stephanie in a conditioned event for filly and mare pacers. The 3-year-old by Somebeachsomewhere-Worldly Treasure scored as the 1-5 favorite in 1:53.4 in the second race to win for the second time in her career. Ginsburg and Alagna scored again in the ninth race with 5-2 second choice Odds On St Lucie in a division of the Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-old fillies on the pace. The daughter of Sweet Lou-Shes Some Treasure completed the mile in 1:53.2, winning for the third time in eight career starts. Ginsburg's third winner of the night came in race seven behind the Chris Lakata-trained Lucky Weekend, who came back to win despite yielding the lead at the three-eighths. The son of Lucky Chucky-Weekend Vacation hit the wire in 1:56 after going post ward at odds of 5-1 in a Kindergarten division for freshmen colt and gelding trotters. Eric Abbatiello drove Alagna's other winner of the night, Escapetothebeach, in the fifth race Kindergarten for pacing colts and geldings. The son of Somebeachsomewhere-Shelliscape hit the wire in a lifetime-best equaling 1:52.2 after going off at odds of 3-1. A LITTLE MORE: There was one very happy simulcast player in the Buckeye State. Only one ticket - sold in Ohio - had all 10 winners in the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10, and returned $8,444. ... The 50-Cent Pick-4 pool reached a meet-high $76,960. ... All-source wagering on the card totaled $1,340,547. ... Marcus Johansson and Victor Kirby each recorded driving doubles. ... Racing resumes Saturday night at 7:15 p.m. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

Tioga Downs played host to a leg of the Kindergarten Classic for both 2-year-old pacers and trotters on Friday (September 14). All classes raced for a purse of $10,000. Cloud Nine Fashion remains unbeaten with Kindergarten Classic win in the second division for trotting fillies. Amanda Blue Chip (Scott Zeron) led the field to a first quarter in :28.3. Jezzys Legacy (Ray Schnittker) took her turn taking the lead with a lap to go. She led them to the half in 58.4 and three-quarters in 1:26.4. Cloud Nine Fashion ($3.30) went first-over just before the three-quarter mark. Owned by Fashion Farms LLC. and trained by Jim Campbell, she took over in the stretched and won easily in a lifetime best of 1:56.0. Jezzys Legacy held on for second. Amanda Blue Chip was third best. Cloud Nine Fashion is a filly by Muscle Hill-I'm On Cloud Nine. She is now a perfect five for five in her career. Starita (Tim Tetrick) wins first division of the Kindergarten Classic for trotting fillies. Princess Deo (Troy Beyer) led to a first quarter of :28.2 Starita ($3.00) took over with five-eighths of a mile left. Trained by Joe Holloway for owners Val D'Or Farms and Theodore Gewertz, she controlled all the rest of the fractions (:57.4, 1:26.1 1:56.0). Second place finisher Big Weezy (David Miller) and Princess Deo (third) both came at her in the stretch but Starita was too tough. Starita is a filly by Trixton-Morningstar. She captured her third career victory in eight lifetime starts. Cub Fan (Tyler Buter) fires late to win Kindergarten Classic for pacing colts and geldings. Sweet Troy (Atlee Bender) went to the front and led to a first quarter in :28.2. Mountain High (David Miller) took control and led to a half of :58.0 and three-quarters in 1:25.4. Cub Fan ($4.40) was fourth at the top of the stretch. Owned by Michael Anderson and trained by Erv Miller, he came charging down the stretch to win in 1:54.0. Southwind Ozzi (Mike Simons) came up late to finish second. Escapetothebeach (Tim Tetrick) took third money. Cub Fan is a gelding by So Surreal-Pardon. It was his second win in five career starts. Cantab Fashion (Mike Simons) easily wins the Kindergarten Classic for trotting colts and geldings. Sheena's Boy (Ake Svanstedt) took the group to a first quarter in :28.3. Cantab Fashion ($5.80) took over and never looked back putting up all the rest of the fractions (:58.1, 1:26.0, 1:54.2). Battenberg (David Miller) finished second with entry mate Caesars Crazy (Tyler Buter) getting third. Cantab Fashion is a colt by Cantab Hall-Defiant Donato. He now has three wins in four career starts. Trainer Jim Campbell and owner Fashion Farms LLC. teamed up for their second win of the night. Michelon's Filly (Marcus Miller) wins non-betting Kindergarten Classic for pacing fillies. Alkippe (Tim Tetrick) controlled all the early fractions (:27.2, :56.0 1:24.2). Michelon's Filly followed in the pocket all the way until she got to the stretch. Trained by Erv Miller for owners Ronald Michelon and Michael Anderson, she flew by in late stretch to win in a lifetime best of 1:53.0. Alkippie settled for second. Under The Hood (Tyler Buter) was third best. Michelon's Filly is a filly by Captaintreacherous-New Album. It was her third win in seven lifetime starts. Leading driver Mike Merton won four on the night to give him 65 wins on the season. He now leads by eight races with three more cards to go. Tioga Downs returns to live racing with a 13 race card on Saturday (September 15) at 6:15. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Tioga Downs welcomes freshman pacers and trotters for a leg of the Kindergarten Classic on Friday (September 14). All classes will race for a purse of $10,000. A non-betting race for the Kindergarten Classic will feature a field of four pacing fillies. The Linda Toscano trained Alkippe (Tim Tetrick) should be the one to beat. The filly by Sweet Lou-Capelo Rose has two wins in five lifetime starts. Her main rival should be Michelon's Filly (Marcus Miller). Trained by Erv Miller, the filly by Captaintreacherous-New Album is two for six lifetime. Starita (Tim Tetrick) is the 9-5 morning line favorite in the the first of two divisions for trotting fillies. Trained by Joe Holloway, the filly by Trixton-Morning Star was fourth in the Jim Doherty final ($357,450) at the Meadowlands. She won a Reynolds Memorial race ($37,250) at Tioga Downs her last time out. The second morning line choice is the R, Nifty Norman trained entry of Antonia (Mike Simons) and Big Weezy (David Miller) at 2-1. Antonia is a filly by Donato Hanover-Tactical Caviar. She is two for five this season. Big Weezy is a filly by Trixton-Keepsake Hanover. Her only trip to the winner's circle came at Tioga Downs when she won a Tompkins Memorial race ($29,250) The second division for trotting fillies features the Jim Campbell trained duo of Cloud Nine Fashion (Tim Tetrick) and Fashion Rachel (David Miller). Cloud Nine Fashion (Muscle Hill-I'm On Cloud Nine) is a perfect four for four in her career. She captured a Reynolds Memorial race ($37,750) at Tioga Downs her last time out. Fashion Rachel (Possess The Will-Raising Rachel) has won three times and finished second three times in six career races. They are the morning line favorites at 7-5. The second morning line choice at 3-1 is the John Butenschoen trained Stella Jane (Tyler Buter). The filly by Crazed-Naughty Nana won a leg of the Kindergarten Classic at the Meadowlands for her only lifetime win in seven starts. In the Kindergaton Classic race for pacing colts & geldings, the 8-5 morning line choice is a trio trained by Erv Miller. Cub Fan (Tyler Buter) is a gelding by So Surreal-Pardon. He is one for four in his career. Sweet Troy (Atlee Bender) is a gelding by Sweet Lou-Magestic Blue Chip. He has three seconds and two thirds in six lifetime starts. Cole On The Beach (Marcus Miller) is a colt by Somebeachsomewhere-Talkative. He will make his first career start on Friday. The seocnd choice at 5-2 is Escapetothebeach (Tim Tetrick). Tony Alagna trains the colt by Somebeachsomewhere-Shelliscape. He has two seconds and a third in six lifetime starts. The morning line favorite for the Kindergarten Classic featuring trotting colts & geldings is the entry of Battenberg (Marcus Miller) and Caesars Crazy (Tyler Buter). Battenberg (Trixton-Coffeecake Hanover) is trained by Joe Holloway. He has a win and a second in three starts. Caesars Crazy (Muscle Hill-Crazy Grigio) is trained by John Butenschoen. He is one for one is his young career. The second choice at 3-1 is the Ron Burke trained Cheap Tricks (Mike Merton). The gelding by Trixton-Maud Blue Chip has two seconds and a third in five lifetime starts. The Firday (September 14) card starts with the non-betting race at 6p.m. The 13 race card to follows starting at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs    

This Week: Joe Gerrity Memorial, Saratoga Casino Hotel, Saratoga Springs, N.Y.; Delvin Miller Adios eliminations, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; and Tompkins-Geers and Kindergarten Series, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J. Schedule of events: Grand Circuit action will be held this weekend at three different racetracks. Action begins on Friday (July 20) at Meadowlands Racetrack with the second leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits. There will be three $10,000 divisions of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old trotting fillies, two $10,000 divisions of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old pacing colts and trotting colts and a single $10,000 division of the Kindergarten for 2-year-old pacing fillies. On Saturday (July 21), the Meadowlands card will offer the $68,600 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old trotting fillies and the $61,900 Tompkins-Geers for 3-year-old trotting colts. Also on Saturday, Saratoga will host their marquee event, the $260,000 Joe Gerrity Memorial for older pacers. Finally, The Meadows on Saturday will offer a pair of $25,000 eliminations for the Devlin Miller Adios for 3-year-old colt pacers. The $400,000 (est.) Adios final the following Saturday afternoon anchors a blockbuster card that features six Grand Circuit stakes. Complete entries for the races are available at this link. Last time: David Miller flashed a wide smile as he guided Courtly Choice to the winner's circle after winning the $701,830 Crawford Farms Meadowlands Pace. The monkey was off the Hall of Famer's back. After 18 failed efforts, Miller finally owned a victory in the Meadowlands Racetrack's signature event for 3-year-olds. Courtly Choice rallied to win the Pace by 1-1/4 lengths on Saturday night (July 14). "That was sweet," Miller said. "Really sweet." The Pace was an obvious omission on Miller's glittering resume. "The Buckeye" is second on the sport's all-time money list with $222 million in the bank. His best previous Pace finish was a second with Always B Miki in 2014. The sweetness of the moment spread in many directions, including trainer Blake MacIntosh, who also savored the victory in his Pace debut. "I believed in this horse," said MacIntosh, the former assistant to Casie Coleman. "He just had some back luck earlier in the year." And it was a winning gamble for the ownership group that ponied up $61,690 to enter the eliminations. The faith of Hutt Racing Stable, Mac And Heim Stables, Daniel Plouffe and Touch Stone Farms was rewarded with the $333,370 first-place check. Most importantly, it was a moment of redemption for Courtly Choice, who failed to make the finals in the North America Cup and the Max Hempt Memorial. The colt served notice his moment was at hand with a sharp first-up victory in his Pace elimination. And then he finally put it all together for the richest victory of his career. The race seemed primed for a 57-1 upset when a dead-game Dorsoduro Hanover, handled by Matt Kakaley, battled his way to the front at the top of the lane. But Courtly Choice was tracking his every move and angled wide under Miller's urging to score the victory. "The trip worked out good," Miller said. "The couple of horses I thought would leave from the outside left. I was able to get Matt in front of me and nobody else moved. On the last turn, I was real happy with my spot." The time was 1:47.1 on the warm evening. Courtly Choice paid $4.40 as the 6-5 favorite. Complete recaps of all the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website. Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards. Here are the leaders following the past weekend. Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 452; 2. Yannick Gingras - 430; 3. Jordan Stratton - 256; 4. David Miller - 226.5; 5. Scott Zeron - 178. Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 428.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 280; 3. Jim King Jr. - 171; 4. Tony Alagna - 142; 5. Peter Tritton - 122. Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable - 100.2; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 100.2; 4. Crawford Farms Racing - 80; 5. Fashion Farms - 72. Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will be taking place next weekend at The Meadows and Meadowlands Racetrack. The Meadows will host eight Grand Circuit events, led by the final of the Delvin Miller Adios for 3-year-old pacing colts. Meadowlands Racetrack will host eliminations for three lucrative stakes, led by the Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old filly trotters, as well as the Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old colt trotters. by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit  

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (November 4, 2017) - When you're hot, you're hot, and nobody cut through the chilly 40-degree November air like harness racing driver Andrew McCarthy on Saturday night at the Meadowlands. McCarthy won three of the four Kindergarten Classic Finals on the opening night of the Fall/Winter Meet at the Big M. McCarthy kicked off his streak in the $198,000 filly trot by changing tactics with Hey Blondie, who had not shown any gate speed in her previous races, including a fifth-place finish in the Breeders Crown Final last week at Hoosier Park. "I post paraded her tonight and she felt great so I thought I would take a shot and leave out of there with her," explained McCarthy. "I didn't want a slow middle half and have to come first over so I just decided to take a shot and race her from the front. She has always been strong at the end of the mile." Hey Blondie held off favored Basquiat to win in 1:53.4 with Dab Hanover third. Hey Blondie McCarthy struck again in the $214,900 Colt Trot with 7/5 favorite Tito. The Erv Miller-trainee battled some sickness in July, but has rounded back in to form and scored the richest win of his young career in 1:55. Tito will next be pointed to the Valley Victory, part of the Fall Final Four at the Meadowlands with finals on November 25. Tito The most drama of the night came in the $150,000 final for the pacing colts and geldings. Points North, a Pinske Stables homebred by Somebeachsomewhere out of the family's Northwest Hanover, held off the late kick of longshot Fashiononthebeach to win in a lifetime-best 1:51.1. "He's really good in the stretch," said McCarthy. "He'll keep fighting when you're driving on him. He started a little slow and he has matured as the season has gone on. I figured there would be a big first eighth of a mile. I had to pull him and in the stretch he dug in." Points North The most impressive performance of the night came in the filly pace where Kissin in the Sand made up for her disappointing Breeders Crown elimination with an eye-popping score in her $140,550 final. Kissin in the Sand and Yannick Gingras parked out second-choice I'm Trigger Happy through matching opening quarters of :27.1. I'm Trigger Happy wilted from that taxing half mile while Kissin in the Sand continued on her speed mission. She polished off a lifetime-best 1:50.3 effort with a :27.3 last quarter to hold safe from runner-up Reign on Me. It was 1/5 of a second off the track record set by JK She'salady, the 2014 Horse of the Year, trained by Nancy Johansson. "She's a little more high strung and difficult, but they're both fast," said Johansson when asked to compare the two fillies. "She's been very special from the beginning. Training down she showed a lot of speed but she was always quirky, but the first time we brought her to the Meadowlands she was professional and handled her business. She was very impressive and I don't think it took anything out of her." Kissin in the Sand The highly-anticipated Pick 10 Survivor made its debut on Saturday and handled $11,600. With a tricky early sequence of winners, 33 tickets survived through the first four races and received a payout of $298.66. Live racing resumes next Saturday with a 7:15 p.m. post time. For more information, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz

If all goes well, Points North could be pointed toward a nice 3-year-old campaign for Pinske Stables, but the harness racing gelding still has work to complete this season. Points North is the 7-2 second choice on the morning line in Saturday's $150,000 Kindergarten Series championship for 2-year-old male pacers at the Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, N.J. He will start from post six with Andy McCarthy driving for trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman. Grand Teton, from the stable of trainer Jimmy Takter, is the 3-1 favorite from post nine with driver Yannick Gingras. Stakes-winner I'm A Big Deal, trained by Chris Ryder, is 9-2 from post two with Joe Bongiorno. Saturday's card at The Big M, which begins at 7:15 p.m. (EDT), also includes Kindergarten finals for 2-year-old female pacers, 2-year-old female trotters and 2-year-old male trotters. Points North heads to his Kindergarten championship off a win in the fifth-and-final preliminary round of the series on Oct. 26 at Vernon Downs. Points North had a total of three wins in the series and was the points leader at the conclusion of the preliminary legs. For the year, Points North has won six of 11 races and earned $82,930 for owner Pinske Stables, which bred the horse with John Carver. All of his victories, including a division of the Bluegrass Stakes, came in his past seven starts. He was discovered to be sick following his only loss during that span. Points North, a June 2015 foal, needed time to mature physically. He was gelded after his first qualifier in mid-June this year and made his career debut a month later. "He was a late foal, so we got started a little late," said Karl Pinske, who is joined by his parents, Tim and Marlys, in making up Pinske Stables. "After we gelded him, he started to come around and has been pretty good ever since. He tries hard and is a high-speed horse. It just took a while to put it all together. "I give a lot of credit to Nifty and his patience. Most people wouldn't be that patient." Points North is a son of Somebeachsomewhere out of the mare Northwest Hanover. The Pinske family raced Northwest Hanover, who was a stakes-winner at age 3 in 2010 --- a year when divisional honors went to millionaires Put On A Show (U.S.) and Western Silk (Canada). "She was a good racehorse and that was a tough bunch," Pinske said. "She had a really good attitude and that's passing through (to her foals). I only keep two or three broodmares, so I'm pretty selective. "She was on the small side, so that's why we bred her to 'Beach.' It worked out. (Points North) is a big, good-looking horse." Points North, who was raised at Pinske's farm in Plato, Minn., was named after a resort where Pinske and his son, Carter, stayed during a fishing trip in Saskatchewan. "Carter has talked up this horse from the beginning," Pinske said. "We didn't over-stake him this year because he was late getting started and needed time. But we will stake him more next year. We really like his potential. He has some filling in to do yet. We think he will only get better." The Pinskes have enjoyed a strong year as owners. In addition to Points North, the family has campaigned a group that includes stakes-winners Overdraft Volo (a Kindergarten champ last year), Haveitalltogether, Hayden Hanover, Inverse Hanover and Lucky Rainbow. "It's been a good year," Pinske said. "Hopefully we can finish it off well." Saturday's card also includes the debut of the new Pick 10 Survivor wager at the Meadowlands. Click here for the night's complete card. Ken Weingartner Media Relations Manager

Freehold, NJ --- Harness racing trainer Erv Miller hopes for a strong 1-2 punch in Saturday’s (Nov. 4) $214,900 Kindergarten Series championship for 2-year-old male trotters, especially now that Tito seems to have reached better form after battling sickness. Miller sends out Tito and series-points-leader Farsetti Hanover in Saturday’s 10-horse final at the Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, N.J. Tito and driver Andy McCarthy will start from post five while Farsetti Hanover and driver Marcus Miller will leave from post one. Stakes-winner Seven Iron, from the stable of trainer Linda Toscano, will start from post nine. Among finalists, Seven Iron was second in points while Tito was fourth. Saturday’s card at The Big M, which begins at 7:15 p.m. (EDT), also includes Kindergarten finals for 2-year-old female trotters, 2-year-old male pacers and 2-year-old female pacers. Tito, a son of Muscle Mass out of Stonebridge Encore, has won three of 12 races this year and earned $100,173 for owners Anthony Lombardi, George Golemes and Andy Willinger. His family includes multiple O’Brien and Dan Patch Award-winner Peaceful Way. He heads to the Kindergarten championship off a win in the fifth-and-final preliminary round of the series, a 1:55.2 score Oct. 26 at Vernon Downs. “I’ve liked him all along,” Miller said. “He got sick on us early and didn’t do what he was supposed to do. We kind of lost the middle of the summer there. He’s just kind of rebounded here the last couple of starts.” Tito was winless in his first six starts, but won three of his next six races. He was a two-time winner on the New York Sire Stakes circuit and finished fourth in the New York Sire Stakes championship. He is eligible to the Valley Victory Stakes in late November at the Meadowlands. Farsetti Hanover, who was entered in next week’s Standardbred Horse Sale, has won two of 12 races and earned $98,999 for owners Ervin Miller Stable, Golemes and David Prushnok. His wins came in divisions of the Kindergarten and Reynolds Memorial Stakes.   Lisa photo Farsetti Hanover has won two of 12 races and earned $98,999. A son of Donato Hanover out of the mare Finesse Hanover, Farsetti Hanover heads to the Kindergarten championship off a miscue in the Oct. 26 Kindergarten leg at Vernon. The colt, who was second in a division of the International Stallion Stakes and third in a division of the Bluegrass, went off stride behind the gate. It was the first time he made a break in a race. “It was pretty uncharacteristic for him,” Marcus Miller said. “He’s been super handy. I think I relaxed on him a little too much. They’re still 2-year-old trotters. I’m not really concerned about it. I like him. Hopefully he can come back. I think he fits with that group, especially at this time of year.” Added Erv Miller, “He’s been solid all year. He’s a big, strong colt, so hopefully he’ll come back here.” Miller also will start Aldine Hanover in the $140,550 Kindergarten championship for 2-year-old female pacers. She was third in points in the series, behind finalists I’m Trigger Happy and Reign On Me. Aldine Hanover has won four of 14 races and earned $35,420 for owners Ervin Miller Stable, Glenn Bechtel and Willinger. She is a daughter of A Rocknroll Dance out of O’Brien Award-winning mare Armbro Amoretto. “She’s the same as Tito,” Erv Miller said. “She got sick on us and we’re just getting her going good. She’ll race right through the end of the year; she’s got the Matron and Three Diamonds.” The $150,000 Kindergarten for 2-year-old male pacers features five of the top six horses in the standings, including leader Points North as well as Rockapelo, I’m A Big Deal, Fashiononthebeach and Born To Be Bad. The $198,000 Kindergarten for 2-year-old female trotters includes the top six fillies in points: Dab Hanover, Megadolce, Basquiat, Mooshka Stride, Hey Blondie and Piranha Fury. Saturday’s card also includes the debut of the new Pick 10 Survivor wager at the Meadowlands. Click here for the night’s complete card. by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications

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