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Scarborough Downs to Cease Harness Racing Operation on Saturday What - Scarborough Downs will host its final live harness racing card after 70 years of operation. Where - Scarborough Downs, Payne Rd, Scarborough, Maine When - Saturday November 28, 2020 with first post time scheduled for 12:15 PM Why - Scarborough Downs first opened as a thoroughbred racetrack in 1950 and operated continuously for 70 seasons. Both thoroughbred and harness racing cards were hosted from 1969 through 1971 with harness racing taking over entirely from 1972 onward. Reasons for the closure include; decreases in revenues which occurred with the advent of the opening of the Oxford Casino in 2012; ongoing development of track property following its sale in 2018; operational and financial challenges faced through Covid-19 protocols this season; and the desire of the harness racing industry to transition toward a more modern facility, a desire which the Downs cannot accommodate at this point in time. Scarborough Downs will remain open for simulcast wagering through the remainder of 2020 and has been granted a license by the Maine Harness Racing Commission to begin operations as an Off Track Betting facility beginning in January of 2021. Mike Sweeney

Beset by financial hardship in recent years, Scarborough Downs will bring down the curtain on 70 years of horse racing later this month. The racetrack, located just south of Portland, Maine, will conduct its final racing program next Saturday (Nov. 28) after opening in 1950 and having conducted harness racing since the 1970s. After riding the wave of harness racing's heyday in the 1970s and 1980s, Scarborough Downs largely ended up lost in the shuffle of full-card simulcasting and has suffered financial losses for the better part of the current century. "It's a combination of things," Scarborough downs publicist Mike Sweeney said in a report from the Portland (Maine) Press Herald. "The overriding sense within the industry is that harness racing needs something different, something that Scarborough Downs can't offer." The half-mile track and its cavernous 6,500-seat grandstand — which was sold out many a summer evening in racing's golden decades — were sold in 2018 to real estate developers Crossroads Holdings LLC, along with the 500 acres of land surrounding the track. Crossroads leased the track back to its operators for the past three seasons, but with on-site wagering revenue having stagnated, the arrangement became unsustainable. “We just appreciated the fact that the new owners let us have us of facility as long as possible to ensure the industry could get on secure footing, where we can go on from here,” said Mike Cushing, director of the Maine Harness Horsemen’s Association. “For that we’re grateful.” The track will still offer simulcast wagering through the end of 2020, and will apply to do the same in 2021 after averaging nearly $8 million a year in simulcast handle over the past three years — a much rosier figure than the roughly $810,000 in on-track handle over 72 Scarborough programs in 2019. For the time being, the closure of Scarborough Downs relegates harness racing in the Pine Tree State to Bangor Raceway as well as a storied county fair circuit which, unlike many jurisdictions in the United States, offers pari-mutuel wagering. But despite the final days of one of New England's harness racing jewels of yesteryear being nigh, Cushing feels that brighter days could be ahead with the help of a new venue, which the Press Herald reports is potentially in the works. "I think this means a new beginning for harness racing in Maine," Cushing concluded. (with files from the Portland (Maine) Press Herald)

Scarborough, ME  - As of this date it appears the Kentucky Derby will not be simulcast at Scarborough Downs this year or at any other venues in Maine. Despite repeated requests from Scarborough Downs, Churchill Downs has declined to make the race available to us and our fans. We understand Churchill Downs has also denied requests from Maine's OTB parlors, Hollywood Casino in Bangor and the on-line advanced-deposit-wagering site created by the Maine Legislature and the Gambling Control Board. We are disappointed with the decision of Churchill Downs and continue to renew our requests, hoping for a more reasoned approach that treats Maine racing fans fairly. We understand that Churchill Downs and Oxford Casino, which Churchill controls, were disappointed that the Gambling Control Board did not pick a Churchill affiliate to operate Maine's new advanced deposit wagering system. The Downs supported allowing Oxford Casino to operate an advance deposit wagering system, and we have long contended that laws that discriminate against venues are mistaken, including the laws that have prevented the Downs from competing with Oxford Casino. But as much as we have disagreed with Legislative choices, we have always tried to work with the entire racing and gaming community for the good of Maine residents and the industry. We hope Churchill Downs and the Oxford Casino will likewise consider the interests of Maine fans as we work together to make the best of these difficult and challenging times. Scarborough Downs features live harness racing on a Tuesday and Saturday schedule with post time slated at 1:30 PM (EDT). In addition to the live on-track experience, people may also watch and wager on Scarborough Downs races at Maine's OTB parlors, and online at (Maine residents must wager at For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine ... The state of Maine continues through a phased re-opening from Covid-19 shutdown and as part of that reopening, the office of Governor Janet T. Mills has granted approval for Scarborough Downs to launch its delayed 2020 harness racing meet. The Downs will kick off their 70th season on Wednesday June 3rd on a spectator-less basis and will continue to race on a three day per week schedule (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) with post time slated at 1:00 PM (EDT). While fans will not be able to attend the races during the initial startup period, the races will be available for watching and out-of-state wagering on the Day at the Track wagering platform ( and/or and on the newly created state of Maine Advanced Deposit Wagering platform ( "We are excited to work in partnership to lead the state of Maine harness racing industry into the 2020 season" said Denise Terry of Scarborough Downs, "It's been a rough few months for the entire nation but in true American fashion we have rolled up our sleeves and done what was necessary to pull through. Maine harness racing has been granted a great chance today and we are determined to do everything necessary to repay the state's vote of confidence." Maine's horsemen and women along with the industry in general have survived this arduous period and are now anxious to get back to work. Racing will be conducted under strict protocols designed by industry leaders that will ensure the safety of all participants and the greater community. This includes enforcement of the governor's 14-day quarantine period for non-residents entering the state. These protocols will necessarily be enforced to the letter and will be available for review at beginning on Monday (6-1). "It's hard to believe that it has been six months since horses have gone behind the gate" said Mike Cushing, president of the Maine Harness Horsemen's Association, "We have been given a great opportunity to get back to doing what we do, and I urge all participants to familiarize themselves with the plan of operation and adhere to it." "The approved risk mitigation plan contains strict safety protocol designed for racing at Scarborough Downs without fans. Please remember that if you are not allowed access to the paddock, you should not come to the track on race days until a plan for spectators is reviewed and approved by the governor." Scarborough's first condition sheet will be published on Friday afternoon with a double draw for Wednesday's and Friday's card to be conducted on Sunday morning (5-31). The box for both days will close at 9:00 AM. Please contact Mike Sweeney (207-252-8873) for further information

Scarborough, Maine - August 3, 2019 ... The three-year-old pacing divisions of the Maine Sire Stakes program concluded a month-long residency at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (8/3) as the sophomore steeds made their fourth consecutive appearance at the seaside oval, split into twin five horse fields of fillies and a mirror image arrangement of colts. Moonlightandroses claimed her third sire stakes victory of the year in the afternoon's first $9717 filly split, pouncing out of the pocket late while charting a brand new career pacing mark of 1:59.3 with customary driver Heath Campbell calling the shots. The reigning freshman champion, a daughter of Deuce Seelster-Guard The Rose, is trained by Valerie Grondin for owner Clark Bustard and has now finished either first or second in all of her 13 career starts. MaydayMaverickHope (S. Wilson) lead throughout before settling for the runner-up placing. GailsGirlInMotion (M. Athearn) rode the pylons for the show. The second $9717 filly division was won by another daughter of Deuce Seelster as JustCallMeBets struck the pike route while holding off a determined bunch at the wire to secure a brand new lifetime clocking of 2:00.3 with driver Matthew Athearn in the bike. Out of the broodmare JustCallMeRosie, the filly claimed her eighth career win for trainer Gretchen Athearn and owner William Phipps in the process. Wicked Wanda (D. Ingraham) launched a game rally from far back to earn the bridesmaid share. CominRightAtYou (R. Cushing) ended her two race win streak while settling for third. Deuce Seelster then completed a "parenting Trifecta" of sorts as another of his get, Bait A Hook, grabbed top honors in the first $9722 colt split of the afternoon. With driver David Ingraham at the helm, the win, timed in a seasonal best 1:58, was the third of the season for last year's freshman champion. Co-parented by the broodmare, Josie Plumstead, Bait A Hook gave trainer Valerie Grondin and owner Clark Bustard their second sire stakes score of the day. LucksRealDeal (M. Athearn) tracked throughout to place second while LittleBitShady (D. Campbell) was third. Inches separated the field at the wire in the second $9723 colt division as driver Gary Mosher popped CBF Bantam from the pocket in deep stretch to overtake the front running Maverick Art at the wire. Trained by David Crochere for co-owners Glen Harris and Marion Phelps, the son of Baron Biltmore-Cohenucopia secured his second consecutive Maine Sire Stakes win, this one timed in 1:59.2. Maverick Art (B. Ranger) continued his sizzling sophomore season by finishing second while Touch Of Character (S. Wilson) rallied strongly for third. The popular Sunday matinee will go to post at a special 1:00 pm post time tomorrow (8/4) as the Downs plays host to their 15th annual Family Fun Day Festival. Live harness racing will continue next week with twilight cards scheduled for 4:30 PM (EDT) on Thursday and Friday while the Downs will be dark on Saturday (8/10) as an accommodation to the Topsham Fair. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Mike Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - November 25, 2018 .... Due to the effects of this weekend's winter storm, Sunday's (11/25) harness racing card and Standardbred Retirement Ceremony were canceled at Scarborough Downs. Racing is scheduled to resume on Thursday with a 12:15 pm (EST) post time. A decision will be forthcoming regarding rescheduling the Retirement Ceremony. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - October 11, 2018 .... The Maine Sire Stakes Championship round takes center stage during Festival of Champions Day on Saturday (10/13) at Scarborough Downs, and with over $600,000 in purse money on the line, this will be the richest day in Maine Harness Racing history. Eight Maine Sire Stakes Championship races will anchor the eleven race program which is slated to get underway at 1:30 p.m. (EDT) while a festival atmosphere overtakes the historic grandstand at the southern Maine racing venue. Fans will be welcomed at a special trackside tented pavilion area that has been created specifically for the event. Country Roads, one of Maine's premier country music bands will perform in between races, local food trucks will provide tantalizingly delicious food offerings, and a trackside beer garden will be featured. Local radio station WPOR will be broadcasting live from the Downs throughout the afternoon, registering attendees for a grand prize flyaway trip for two to the CMA Awards Show in Nashville (provided by EMI Records - Nashville). The only place to register for the trip will be at Scarborough Downs on Saturday and the winner will be drawn trackside at 4:30 pm. Admission and programs are free on Festival of Champions Day, and fans will also have the opportunity to enter to win a $1000 Cash Giveaway. Face painting and trackside games will delight the kids on Saturday while everyone will enjoy meeting Luigi, the ice cream eating horse, as he joins the festivities in his trackside pen. "This is the harness racing party they'll be talking about for years to come" said Wendy Ireland, president of the Maine Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association. "We wanted to create a festive atmosphere to help showcase these championship races, and with the help of the Downs, I think we've come up with the perfect mix." Scarborough Downs features live harness racing every Saturday and Sunday at 1:30 pm (EDT) through December 9th. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - September 6, 2018 .... Maine Sire Stakes action returned to Scarborough Downs on Thursday (9/6) as the three year old filly pacing division took center stage. Split into twin 6-horse fields for purses of $11,606 and $11,605 respectively, the sophomore stakes stars anchored the twilight program. Shes A Maverick fired the opening sire stakes salvo on Thursday as driver John Nason rifled his charge off the gate, gained the lead before reaching the 1/8th mile marker, and from there enjoyed an advantage which the tandem never relinquished. The filly survived a determined first-over, mid-mile attempt from the eventual third place finishing Perfect Maverick (Ron Cushing), only to drift wide into the stretch where she held off (by a matter of whiskers) a fast closing, inside bid from the post time favorite, Gonna Hear Me Rohr (Drew Campbell). Trained by John Nason for owner Carolyn Corso, the win was the second consecutive score for Shes A Maverick, who put an end to the imposing five-race win streak of Gonna Hear Me Rohr with her effort. In the day's second division, Saratoga Liz blew up the tote board, scoring an imposing win at 11-1 odds, as catch driver Matthew Athearn put the sophomore lass on the lead for the first time this season. From that coveted perch, the duo repelled all challengers en route to securing the second lifetime win for the daughter of Western Maverick-Laughs Last, in a career best 2:00.2 clocking. Tip Em Off (Dan Deslandes) rode the outer rim throughout, yet still held firm for the runner-up placing, while Luck Of The Deal (Eddie Davis, Jr) rallied from last to third to secure the show dough. Maine Sire Stakes racing returns to Scarborough Downs on Saturday (9/9) as the three year old colt pacing division will anchor the twilight program. The three year old trotters invade the Seaside Oval on Sunday. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing during the coming week on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. Closing Day of the summer meet is slated for September 15th. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs  

Scarborough, ME - September 1, 2018 ... The two-year-old harness racing filly pacing division of the Maine Sire Stakes program made its first appearance of the 2018 season at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (9-1), with twelve entries divided into twin $11,327 splits. The occasion marked the fourth time that the divisional battle call had sounded this year, as the freshmen gals reached the midway point of their sire stakes season. ComingRightAtYou took top honors in the first split, throwing in a steady effort in juxtaposition to some recent appearances, in which the filly had twice failed to maintain stride before and/or after the start. Driver Ron Cushing confidently steered the daughter of Western Maverick-Express Ball N swiftly off the car on Saturday though, putting the competition quickly in line and securing a rather unhurried journey. The strategy enabled them to hold a determined field at bay as they marched through a nifty 59.4 back-half, ultimately reaching the wire under wraps, timed in 2:01.4 for the mile. Trained by Heidi Gibbs for the ownership partnership of Kevin Sywyk and Ron Cushing, the win marked the third career victory lap for the Maine-bred lass. MoonlightAndRoses (David Ingraham) steered an overland course to grab runner-up honors, while Wicked Wanda (Gary Mosher) drafted second-up for the show - both fillies beaten a well-measured half-length by the ultimate victor. The second Sire Stakes division of the day saw JustCallMeBets looking every bit the 1-9 shot that she was sent to post at, as the ferocious freshman dominated the competition while securing her fifth career victory from six lifetime starts. Driver Mark Athearn sent his charge merrily on her way from the get go, gliding to an opening quarter timed in a leisurely 31.4, before sealing the deal at the half as the tele-timer announced a demoralizing 1:03 clocking. The competition chased in vain from that point on as the daughter of Deuce Seelster-JustCallMeRosie coasted toward a 2:03.2 jaunt in the park sort of effort, finishing well in-hand and under wraps, much to the delight of the wagering public and to the chagrin of her co-combatants. The precocious youngster, ever popular at the mutuel windows, is trained by Gretchen Athearn for owner William Phipps. Ms Downeast (Gary Mosher) sat second throughout the mile, ultimately finishing in that position, while we Love Western (John Nason) raced third best. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing during the coming week on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. Maine Sire Stakes racing will be showcased on all three of those days as the three-year-old divisions revisit the raceway. Closing Day of the summer meet is slated for September 15th. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. By Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - August 11, 2018 ... A large crowd witnessed the return of Maine Sire Stakes action to Scarborough Downs on Saturday (8/11), bolstered by legions of tourists who flocked from the beaches on the overcast weekend afternoon, as they cheered on twin splits of the sophomore colt pacing division of the state-bred program. ThankYouAllMyFans revved up his engines from the get go in the $10,611 first division, as driver Eddie Davis, Jr attempted to secure the customary front end seat for his home-bred steed, a pacer who had been sent merrily down the highway in each of his last five starts. The Ron Cushing piloted Hoppi would eventually thwart that endeavor though, as the pair of speedball sophomores jockeyed for early position to the quarter, at which point it was ordained that Hoppi would lead the charge from that pole onward, with ThankYouAllMyFans' nose glued right to Cushing's helmet. A rousing, yet strategic game of catch-me-if-you-can then ensued, until the battle was re-joined at the top of the lane. ThankYouAllMyFans pulled to the outside of Hoppi at that point in the mile, as the tandem quite literally matched strides to the wire, before eventually dead-heating for the win in a sizzling 1:57 clocking; a brand new lifetime mark for both. Hoppi, while making his first start of the 2018 season, extended his undefeated streak to a perfect 10 for 10 on his career. The son of Western Hanover-Barbra Ann is trained by Heidi Gibbs for the ownership group of KDK Standardbreds and Florence O'Keefe. ThankYouAllMyFans secured his first win of the 2018 season and has now hit the board in 17 of 19 career starts. The son of Baron Biltmore-Holme In A Moment is trained by Eddie Davis, Jr for the ownership consortium of Janet and Eddie Davis, Jr and Janice Watkinson. Pembroke Pharoah's (Heath Campbell) settled for third best in the contest, as his three-race win streak came to an end. Long shot fever then struck at the Downs in the $10,610 second division as the 14-1 shot, StormyWeatherAhead and driver Matty Athearn wore down the front running combination of Eddie Davis, Jr and the pacer Twelve, in an epic display of strength and stamina. Guided to the outside just past the 3/8th's pole, StormyWeatherAhead appeared to be in uncharted territory as he began his assault on the streaking Twelve, who to that point had not tasted defeat in five consecutive appearances. Stride for stride they duked it out all the way to the wire, with Twelve appearing to hold the upper hand, until a desperate late burst of speed propelled StormyWeatherAhead past his foe at the wire, with mere whiskers separating the two at the finish. StormyWeatherAhead, a son of Luckcamotion-Wolf Creek Cupid, owned by Leighton Property and trained by Marc Tardif, stopped the clock in a career best 1:57.2, while returning a hefty $31.20 for a $2 win ticket. Twelve finished a dead-game runner-up while MyLastDime (David Ingraham) rallied for the show. Maine Sire Stakes action now heads out on its weeklong Skowhegan Fair swing before returning to the Downs in one week's time on Sunday August 19th. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing throughout the summer season on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs         #       Virus-free.

Scarborough, Maine - July 26, 2018 ... The Gretchen Athearn roster ran roughshod over Maine Sire Stakes competition at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (7/28) as the Cumberland Fairgrounds-based, family staffed outfit, sent three stakes winners down Victory Lane; two in the very same race! The dominant stable performance was highlighted by a dead heat finish in a $10,589 split of the sophomore filly trotting division, in which ShesAHarleyGirl (Matthew Athearn) doggedly tracked down her stable-mate, DualPatWitchyWoman (Eddie Davis, Jr.) at the wire, to stop the clock in 2:05; establishing brand new lifetime speed records for both. ShesAHarleyGirl, a daughter of Noble Venture-Dynamic Kid is owned in partnership by Joan Harmon, Normand St. Clair and Gretchen Athearn. Not to be denied her fair share of winners circle glory, DualPatWitchyWoman, a daughter of Boy Band-Hs Hallsdeckedout is owned by the tandem of Linwood Higgins and Dual-Pats Farm. American Flambé (Ron Cushing) finished third. The Athearn stable magic worked equally well on both genders of Standardbreds on Saturday as Mouthpiece, another enrollee in the Athearn honors program, continued to state his case for prized student of his class in the three-year-old colt division, which went post-ward for the purse of $10,657. The son of Noble Venture-Beluga who is owned by William Phipps, threw in a strong rally bid en route to securing his fourth win of the season with driver Matthew Athearn guiding the gelding to a steady 2:00.3 clocking, effectively setting the table for the ultimate Gretchen Athearn hat trick. Cinamatic Venture (Gary Mosher) charged hard late to gain the bridesmaid share while Pembroke Boss Man (Nick Graffam) overcame an early misstep to finish third best in the split. Just to spread some of the success beyond the boundaries of the Athearn barn, earlier in the day, June Carter Cash continued to prove an unstoppable force in Maine Sire Stakes action as the push-button filly strode to her fifth win in a row while keeping her seasonal undefeated record intact, in a $10,589 non-betting split of the filly trotting ranks. Driver Gary Mosher never felt pressure as he hustled the sophomore daughter of Current Cast-Celebrity Image confidently off the car, ultimately extending to a 13-length margin at the wire, timed in a career best 2:01.1. June Carter Cast was trained to her 9th career victory by Hall of Fame conditioner Donald Richards for the perennially powerful partnership pair of Thomas Dillon and Walter Hight. Sweet Amy O (John Beckwith) just got up at the wire to secure runner-up honors in the non-betting dash, while Sister Longwood (Heath Campbell) rode the pylons to third. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing throughout the summer season on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - July 26, 2018 ... Some things just were made to stand the test of time, and after 25 years of being held as the gold standard, Hot Rod Falcon's track record of 1:52.4 was beginning to seem like it would never be supplanted. Many horses came - good horses came - tasked with the purpose of etching a new benchmark into the Scarborough Downs record books, but year after year, time after time, all challengers fell short of the goal, as the near-mythical speed legend of Walter Case, Jr and the handsome, white-footed chestnut, refused to be toppled. But then JJs Jet touched down in Saturday's (7/28) $25,000 Mid-Summer Classic and the saga of a new legendary pairing was born. Riding a three-race win streak and fresh off a determined score in Bangor Raceway's Paul Bunyan Invitational, driver Drew Campbell scalded JJs Jet smartly off the car to claim first blood, hitting the 1/4-pole timed in a smart 27.4 before catching a breather to a half timed in a more moderate 57.1. "I wasn't going for a track record today" Drew Campbell explained, "Especially after stealing the first half, my aim was entirely on winning this big $25,000 race. But with my brother (Heath Campbell) and StarzNHeaven breathing right down my neck, I knew it was going to be time to boogie pretty soon." And boogie they did as the pacesetting duo sped through a closing half of 55.2 while furiously driving through a final panel of 27.4 to hold off the stern sibling challenge, en route to establishing the brand new track record by a glorious 1/5th of a second - A tick of the clock that had eluded so many over a span of 25 years. "We've raced JJs Jet for five years now and he always seems to get extremely sharp this time of year" Campbell continued, "He's everything you'd want in a good horse. He can leave, he can close, he loves first up - And for such a big horse, he absolutely thrives on the half-mile tracks here in Maine." "It's a shame there aren't more top class horses here in Maine because we'd love to race him more often in front of the local fans. Thanks go out to the Downs for putting the Mid-Summer Classic back on the calendar this year and thanks also go out to Jody Arnold and the track crew for creating such a great surface for us to race over. The whole day was one big success." JJs Jet, a 9-year-old son of Jereme's Jet-Northern Desire is trained by James Dunn for owner Bruce Maxwell of Saint John, NB, Canada. Saturday's win marked his 49th career winners circle appearance and pushed his lifetime bankroll over the quarter-million-dollar mark. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing throughout the summer season on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs  

Scarborough, Maine - July 22, 2018 ... Maine Sire Stakes action made its third consecutive appearance at Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/22) as the three-year-old colt pacing division took center stage. In stunning deja vu fashion, everything old was reminiscently new once again on Sunday with two stakes divisions generating the exact same winners from just the week prior. It seems that Pembroke Pharoah has found winning races to his liking. It was only last week that the Baron Biltmore-Migrane colt tasted the sweet nectar of success for the very first time in his career. Apparently he found the experience so pleasing that he came back for a second serving in his very next start, and has now earned the status of "flavor of the month" in Maine Sire Stakes circles. Driver Heath Campbell was once again able to negotiate a prime second-over journey for the up-and-coming sophomore this week, sliding in behind the twice favored My Last Dime (David Ingraham) as the field approached the midway point. Ever game, My Last Dime persistently tracked down the front-running ThankYouAllMyFans (Eddie Davis, Jr), ultimately overtaking his prey at the top of the lane, but equally determined, Pembroke Pharoah once again ascended over his rival at the wire, with the margin of victory not measured in cubits but rather in mere whiskers. Pembroke Pharoah is trained by Valerie Grondin for the ownership consortium of William Varney and Heath Campbell. He claimed top honors in his $10,606 stakes split while stopping the tele-timer in 1:58.4. My Last Dime was vanquished to second best for the second week in a row, while ThankYouAllMyFans held steady for third. A horse named Twelve secured his fourth consecutive Sire Stakes score in the $10,605 second division on Sunday as driver/trainer Eddie Davis, Jr deftly steered his charge on toward an early lead. From that perspective they toyed with the field through moderate fractions, gaining an advantage which they would ultimately never relinquish. Owned by Dean Malin, the Shady Character-Sabine Hanover gelding paced the mile in a leisurely 1:59.3 to score the seventh top tally of his career while simultaneously delivering the 4999th career tally for driver Eddie Davis, Jr. StormyWeatherAhead (Matthew Athearn) rode the perfect pocket trip to earn the bridesmaid share while Just One More Time (Michael Stevenson) sat the pylons to finish third. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - July 21, 2018 ... Two-year-old stakes racing made its seasonal debut at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (7/21) as a group of 7 Maine-bred pacing colts, freshmen all, gathered to contest a $10,635 premier of this Maine Sire Stakes division. In imposing fashion, LucksRealDeal gave notice to the competition that he might well be the "real deal" of this class this season as he threw in an uber impressive pari-mutuel debut, following a pair of rather rocky, yet intriguingly promising prep miles. The two-year-old son of Luckcamotion-Deal With Life had made breaks before the start in both his Baby Race appearances, only to rally smartly after resetting himself, while claiming back-to-back runner-up placings. Needing a flat line to qualify for his upcoming stakes engagements though, trainer Marc Tardif trucked his protege up to Bangor Raceway where the gelding proceeded to demoralize his competition, cutting the mile while pacing a back-half of 1:00.2, en route to a 39-1/4 length margin of victory. That sturdy QueenCity form certainly carried over into Saturday's stakes event as driver Matty Athearn gunned his charge explosively off the car, through an opening panel of 28 seconds flat, gaining an easy early lead which they would never relinquish. Owned in partnership by Marc Tardif and Lesley Leighton, the home-bred claimed a maiden speed record of 2:00.1 while cruising to 6-1/2 length margin at the wire. Victoria's Maverick (Heath Campbell) racing as part of a mutuel entry, threw in a strong rally bid to secure runner-up honors, while Heza Deuce (Mark Athearn) raced in second position throughout the mile before settling for third best at the wire. Maine Sire Stakes racing resumes at Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/22) as the three-year-old pacing colts will take center stage, helping to anchor a strong 10-race program which will feature the 2nd annual Battle of the Ages driving challenge. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Mike Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs  

Scarborough, Maine - July 19, 2018 ... The Maine Sire Stakes opened a weekend long engagement at Scarborough Downs on Thursday (7/19) as the three-year-old filly pacing division, divided into twin splits, anchored a well received 8-race harness racing twilight program. The opening stakes division saw Little Honey Badger bolting alertly off the car in a valiant attempt at gaining early supremacy. The David Ingraham piloted entry was immediately met with substantial gate speed to her inside though which forced her driver to abort the early takeoff maneuver and rein the filly back to third. And third they sat as the favored Pembroke Passionly (Heath Campbell) cut the mile with the well regarded JustCallMeDee (Mark Athearn) claiming the pocket seat, and single file style these three raced past the quarter pole marker. As they turned for home though, the battle that was aborted at the start of the race was renewed with great vigor, and the three principles fanned across the raceway as the finish line came into view. Little Honey Badger deftly snuck off the pylon path as she vaulted past her early vanquishers, gliding to a hand-driven lifetime best 2:01.1 speed record in only the second winner's circle appearance of her career. The sophomore daughter of Cheyenne Hollywood-Terri I Fra, owned and trained by Michael Graffam of Falmouth, Maine, claimed the lion's share of the $10,831 purse while returning a generous $27.40 win price to the fans. JustCallMeDee held steady at the wire to secure the brides-mare share while Pembroke Passionly faded back to third. The $10,830 second division featured a rematch between a pair of fillies who had finished first and second to each other in two of their 2018 sire stakes appearances. Cab Bearnaise (Mitchell Cushing), a two-time stakes winner this season had bested Shes A Maverick (John Nason) in her sophomore debut, only to experience the taste of defeat, courtesy of her rival, in their very next match-up. Living up to expectations, the battle was joined immediately, with the gloves coming off as soon as the starter released the field. Cab Bearnaise, holding the inside edge over her rival, was hustled on to the early lead only to be hounded to the quarter mile marker by Shes A Maverick who paced through a torrid 28.1 panel while aired to quarter. Despite a perfunctory challenge up the backstretch and an attempt to rally through the lane, Cab Bearnaise's fate was sealed after that opening salvo as Shes A Maverick stepped off to a lifetime equaling 1:59 clocking, en route to a 2-1/2 length margin of victory. Shes A Maverick, a daughter of Western Maverick-Fiber Art, is trained by John Nason for owner Carolyn Corso of Henderson, Nevada. Cab Bearnaise, by finishing second, continued her mastery of the pari-mutuels with her 4th on the board placing this season. Where Does Time Go (David Ingraham) rode the pylons to grab the show dough. Maine Sire Stakes action will be featured all weekend long at Scarborough Downs with the 2-year-old colt pacing division gracing the seaside oval on Saturday, one day before their sophomore older brothers take over center stage on Sunday. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

Scarborough, Maine - July 1, 2018 ... The three-year-old trotting divisions of the Maine Sire Stakes program made their initial appearance of the 2018 season at Scarborough Downs on Sunday (7/1), sporting twin 6-horse splits of fillies contesting purses of $10,589 apiece while the boys were grouped together in one 8-horse bunch, vying for their share of the $11,107 prize. The first filly brigade changed complexion even before the starting gate released the field as last season's freshman champion and this week's 4-5 favorite, Pembroke Dancer, rolled off stride for the first time in her career. Taking advantage of circumstances, driver Drew Campbell sent Sweet Amy O smartly to the lead while walking the field to the half timed in 1:03.3. Sensing the lack of pace, Ron Cushing sent American Flambe to battle in first over fashion, with these two trotter's matching strides through an accelerated 30.1 third panel, before the front-runner succumbed to the persistent pressure and rolled off stride midway through the final turn. Loose on the lead now, American Flambe appeared home free, but then a late burst of speed from Peregrine Elanas and driver David Ingraham changed the complexion of this race once again, as the duo raced wide into the stretch to reach the wire, ultimately 1-1/2 lengths the best. Trained by Eric Bickmore for owner Kemit Allen, Peregrine Elanas, a daughter of Lord Valentine-Elanas, stopped the clock in a maiden establishing 2:04.3. American Flambe's game bid resulted in runner-up honors while Pembroke Dancer (N. Graffam) recovered from her early misfortunes to rally for third. The second filly division began with some level of uncertainty too, as the heavily favored June Carter Cast made a not so rare break before the start, spotting the field an advantage of multiple lengths in the early going, as she was left in their wake attempting to regain a confident stride. Once back in gear though, she and driver Gary Mosher wasted precious time establishing a dominant position as they hustled to the lead while approaching the quarter mile marker. Once on the point, Mosher throttled down his charge, coasting to an unhurried 9-1/4 length margin of victory, timed in a career best 2:03 flat. The daughter of Current Cast-Celebrity Image is trained by Hall of Fame conditioner, Donald Richards for noted state of Maine owners Thomas Dillon and Walter Hight. DualPatWitchyWoman was second at every pole en route to securing the runner-up placing while Lilly Longwood overcame an early misstep to rally for third. The colt division saw a powerful mutuel entry sent to post by the Gretchen Athearn Stable, with the combination of He'sALittleBitNoble and Mouthpiece being backed to the tune of 1-5 odds by the patrons assembled. The patrons were forgiven for uttering an early startled gasp though as He'sALittleBitNoble rolled madly off stride while Mouthpiece scored multiple lengths off the gate before the word go was even given. Never one to disappoint the fans though, driver Matt Athearn quickly regrouped, shifting Mouthpiece into gear, and steering him into a first-over assault through torrid fractions of .30/1:00.1/1:29.3 before gaining the pylons entering the final turn. The son of Noble Venture-Beluga then coasted through the lane to stop the tele-timer in a lifetime best 1:59.3 for owner William Phipps. Pembroke Boss Man (N. Graffam) drafted in second-over position to rally for the runner-up honors while Myreh's God Son (R. Cushing) saved ground to grab the show dough. The sophomore Stakes Stars will be absent from Scarborough Downs for a two week period, but the Downs is pleased to present a program of Maine Sire Stakes Preview races for two-year-old state-bred hopefuls on Sunday July 8th. Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit or visit our Facebook page. by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

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