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YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 18, 2019--They were lacking in quantity, but there was some quality to be found Saturday night (May 18th) during the harness racing eliminations for winning Yonkers Raceway's Art Rooney and Lismore Paces. The 29th Rooney began with two, six-horse $40,000 elims for the 3-year-old colts and geldings. Odds-on Air Force Hanover (Dave Miller, $2.20) won the first elimination, though with few style points. Away from post position No. 2, he controlled (:27.4, :56.2, 1:24.2, 1:52.4) after taking over from Captain Malicious (Mark MacDonald). Air Force Hanover did have to hold off a long, first-up Buddy Hill (Brian Sears). The 2½-length lead in and out of the final turn was a diminishing neck, with Price Hanover (Dan Dube) third and Captain Malicious fourth. Goldberg (Montrell Teague) was an unlucky fifth, sitting a trapped three-hole behind a tiring pocket-sitter and a gapping second-over number...both of whom beat him to the line. For Air Force Hanover, a son of Somebeachsomewhere co-owned by County Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo & W. J. Donovan and trained by Brian Brown, it was his second win and three seasonal starts. The exacta paid $26.40, the triple returned $127 and the superfecta paid $343.50. The second elim for the Rooney saw Bettor's Wish (Dexter Dunn, $5) stuff 3-4 favorite Blood Money (Scott Zeron) in behind, then go the distance. From post No. 3, he laid down intervals of :28, :57.2, 1:26.1 and 1:53.2, easily handling his pocketed rival by a length-and-a-quarter. Rollwithpapajoe (Joe Bongiorno) sat a three-hole and photoed a first-up Branquinho (Tyler Buter) for third For second choice Bettor's Wish, a Bettor's Delight colt co-owned by (trainer) Chris Ryder, Bella Racing, Fair Island Farm and Kenneth Solomon, he's won both of his '19 tries. The exacta paid $9.30, the triple returned $14.80 and the superfecta paid $33.80. Bettor's Wish                                --Mike Lizzi photo The companion event, the 15th Lismore for soph fillies, offered two, $20,000 eliminations race, though the first of those didn't eliminated anyone. A quartet of lasses (after a defection) had Annie Hill (Sears, $2.90) move from last, then pick off pace-setting As Time Goes By (Jordan Stratton) by a neck in 1:55.4. Privacy Hanover (Jason Bartlett) was third and Mi Nina Bonita (Brent Holland) fourth. The second elim was won by Queen of the Pride (Stratton, $2.40)--from post No. 2--assuming the lead early and going the route (:27.2, :56, 1:24.4, 1:53.2). Bestseller Hanover (Bartlett) moved from third and was a solid second, beaten three-quarters of a length. Rockn' Philly (Victor Kirby) was a belated third and Rock N McRoll (Dube) snapping Blue Ivy (Sears) for fourth. The open draws for both the Lismore ($109,234) and Rooney ($300,000) take place Monday afternoon (May 20th) in ad advance of the Saturday, May 25th, finals. Saturday night's pair of $44,000 Open Handicaps were won by... --Trot--Swansea (Bongiorno, $8.20) in 1:56, --Pace--Mac's Jackpot (Dunn, $5.40) in 1:52.   BY FRANK DRUCKER  Publicity Director

Bay Rum (John MacDonald) wins the featured harness racing pace ($6,000) at Vernon Downs on Saturday (May 18). Electrofire (Jennifer Lappe) charged to the front and put up all the early numbers (:27.1, :57.2, 1:26.1). Bay Rum ($5.40) , who is owned by Glasser Racing LLC. and trained by Homer Hochstetler, sat in the pocket until he reached the stretch. He would go right by to win in a seasonal best time of 1:53.2. Electrofire hung on for second with Skip Jive (Jimmy Whittemore) earning third place money. Bay Rum is a 6-year-old gelding by Real Desire. It was his fourth win this season. He has 15 career victories. John MacDonald had four wins on the card. His other wins came with Haulin Oats ($7.10), Leviathan ($7.30), and Western Toro ($4.80). Claude Huckabone III trained and drove three winners on the night. His wins came with Gaius Crastinus ($5.80), Passa-Grille Beach ($35.60), and Redhot Romeo ($12.20). Vernon Downs returns to live racing on Friday (May 24) with a post time of 6:10 p.m. For more information go to   John Horne for Vernon Downs

In A Single Bound (Roll With Joe) won his first local Open Pace last month at Saratoga Casino Hotel and the Monica Krist harness racing trainee has become a staple in the feature ever since. On Saturday night, the five year old started from post position one and wound up getting a pocket trip behind Mar Nien A (Greg Merton), the race's other 8-5 co-favorite. After checking in at three quarters in 1:23.2, Mar Nien A still appeared strong but was met with a late challenge from In A Single Bound who came flying up the passing lane. Those two hit the wire noses apart but it was the Krist-trained pacer who prevailed, stopping the timer in 1:51.3 for his fourth victory of the year and second in the $15,000 Saturday night Open Pace. Mar Nien A had to settle for second while Carolina Beach (Mark Beckwith) earned the show spot. The win was the 20th in the career of In A Single Bound in just 48 lifetime starts. The exacta comprised of the pair of 8-5 shots paid $23.00 while the triple returned $47.80. Leading driver Billy Dobson, who celebrated his birthday on Saturday, piloted the Open winner as well as another for Krist on the card. Their Half A Billion (Sportswriter) set a lifetime mark in a $10,000 event for pacers, going coast-to-coast in 1:51.3, the same final time as his stablemate In A Single Bound scored in in the evening's feature. Live racing continues on Sunday afternoon at Saratoga with a 12:00 Noon first post.   Mike Sardella

Roundtown Rocker (Jim Taggart Jr.) charges late to take the Tioga Downs featured harness racing pace ($9,000) on Saturday (May 18). Meadowbranch Ricky put up all the early fractions (:27.4, :57.0, 1:25.2). Roundtown Rocker ($14.20), who is trained by Rick Dane for owners Scott Dane and the Rock&Roll Stable, was third after three-quarters. He went flying in the stretch and wore down second place finisher Meadowbranch Ricky to win in a seasonal best time of 1:55.3. Jack Rules (Andy Santeramo) came up late to finish third. Roundtown Rocker is a 6-year-old gelding by Hard Rock N Roll. It was his second win this season. He now has 33 career victories. Jim Taggart Jr. had two more wins on the night. His other wins came with Soho Hanover ($9.00) and Six Bax ($6.00). Live racing returns to Tioga Downs with a 13 race card on Sunday (May 19) starting at 1 p.m. For more information go to   John Horne for Tioga Downs

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Beachy Dream ($12.80) put in a gutsy effort and notched the harness racing victory in Buffalo Raceway's $12,500 Class AA Open Handicap Pace on Saturday night (May 18)..   The tempo-setting Beachy Dream found plenty of challengers in the stretch but had just enough to hold off the serious late bids of Rose Run Ranger and Heaven Rocks who finished second and third respectively.   Putting up splits of :27.3, :56.3 and 1:26.1, Beachy Dream braced himself for the expected charge to the finish line and the closers didn't disappoint.   Rose Run Ranger (Ray Fisher Jr.) took dead aim on Beachy Dream on the outside while Heaven Rocks (Drew Monti) mounted his bid through the passing lane. But those attempts were thwarted as driver Cummings kept Beachy Dream on task and posted the narrow win in 1:55.0.   Owned by Mike Torcello and trained by Gerry Sarama, it was the fifth win in 14 outings for the 8-year-old gelded Beachy Dream (If I Can Dream-Beachy Girl). The victory improved his 2019 earnings to $38,295 and $218,435 in his career.   In the $11,500 Class AA Open Handicap Pace, Upfront Countryboy (Fisher Jr.) went from last to first and turned back Charmbo Orbit (David McNeight III) by a half length in 1:54.4.   After watching Charmbo Orbit set the splits of :28.4, :58.1 and 1:26.4, Upfront Countryboy ($11.80) sat last but began to gobble up ground just past the half.   Reaching the lead, it appeared Upfront Countryboy was about to drop anchor at the top of the stretch but Fisher Jr. re-rallied the 10-year gelding and took the win. Charmbo Orbit held on for second with Andy's Ideal (Mike Caprio) finishing in third.   Trained by James Clouser Jr. and owned by William Emmons, it was the fourth win in 15 attempts for Upfront Countryboy (Dragon Again-Cambloid). The win sent his earnings to $37,845 this year and $477,265 lifetime.   A F F Bigdaddy (David McNeight III) collected the $4.90 decision in the $10,000 Class A pace with a two length nod over Focus Power in 1:55.2.   It was the fourth victory in 10 tries for A F F Bigdaddy who is owned by Rose Campbell and trained by Steve Kiblin. The triumph moved his seasonal winnings to $22,440 and $101,465 lifetime.   Shawn McDonough and Fisher Jr. had driving doubles while Clouser Jr. collected three training wins and McDonough two.   Racing will resume on Wednesday evening with a nine race program set for 5 p.m.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, results, upcoming promotions and simulcast schedule, go to     by Brian J. Mazurek for Buffalo Raceway

YONKERS, N.Y. – Although Montrell Teague has established himself as one of the top drivers on the Delaware circuit and became a household name after pairing with Wiggle It Jiggleit on a conquest of the Grand Circuit from 2014 to 2016, the young reinsman desired to have more skin in the game than just being a catch driver. Inspired by his father George and driven away from the sales due to rising prices, Teague turned to breeding his own racehorses. “I’ve got about five broodmares now. I bought two for myself and I bought three off of dad,” Teague said. “I’m getting into that a little more, just trying to own a couple more to make more money than just the five percent from driving.” Teague’s foray into breeding began with multiple stakes-winning mare Ella Fitz Hanover. A freshman standout in 2004, Ella Fitz Hanover earned a special place in Teague’s heart. However, after the mare failed to produce a star of her own, Teague sought to expand his fledgling broodmare band. “I fell in love with (Ella Fitz Hanover), so he just gave her to me to breed,” Teague said. “’Ella Fitz’ was the lone broodmare I had, so I went on and saw Chausettes Blanche. I raced against her with one of dad’s horses; she was an open mare,” Teague recalled. Chausettes Blanche, a 32-time winner and earner of $329,250, came with a catch, however. After multiple seasons of trying, the mare’s previous owners were unable to get her in foal. Listed for just $1,000, Teague decided to take a chance on her.  “Dad said, ‘you might as well just try it. We’ve got a bunch of broodmares already, what’s one more,’ ” Teague said. “Out in the field, dad has about 40 broodmares already, so to throw another one out there doesn’t make a whole lot of difference.” Teague bought the Christian Cullen daughter and immediately took her to Tommy Cugle’s farm with the intent to live-breed her to Mr. Wiggles. About a week later, Teague was stunned when he came off the track at Harrington. “I just came off a horse that won and dad said, ‘congratulations, I’ve got better news, your horse just got in foal,’ ” Teague remembered. “I just couldn’t believe it because they tried two or three years and couldn’t get her in foal. That made my day way more than winning that race.” Chausettes Blanche produced Goldberg, a bay colt. Although he failed to make an impression early in the breaking process, Goldberg soon stood out from the pack for his desire to work. “Once we brought him in and started hooking him up, we started noticing that he had more energy than the other ones. Once we got him ready to go out, we couldn’t really put the bridle on him because he would rear up and he wanted to be the first one out of the stall,” Teague explained. “It didn’t tell you that he was going to be a good one, but it just reassured you that he actually loved doing what he did.” By the time Goldberg was training down at 2, Teague knew he had a budding star in his stable. However, an extra boost of confidence from his father provided the encouragement needed to aggressively stake the colt. “I had been going with him the majority of the time. Dad always knew he was one of the better ones, so we just set him up to sit on the outside and brush right on by and he would always win the training miles,” Teague remembered. “Finally, dad sat behind him and said, ‘you’ve got a great one here. I’ve trained a lot of good horses, but he ranks right up there with them.’ That made staking him up a whole lot easier. “He’s sat behind a bunch of great ones, Rainbow Blue, Wiggles, I can’t even name them all, but to come by after a training mile and say ‘woah, he’s special,’ it just reassures you that we definitely should take a chance staking him up.” After an impressive qualifying mile in 1:51.3 at the Meadowlands last July, Goldberg won his debut as a 1-20 shot and placed in two stakes before finishing third in an elimination of the Metro Pace. Goldberg’s manners on the racetrack impressed his owner and driver. “He feels like a classy horse. He’s very playful when he trains down and when he’s jogging, but when he steps out onto the track and he knows he’s suited up to race, he’s all class and he wants to race,” Teague said. “He’s two fingers, he doesn’t really go on any lines. He loves what he does, which is definitely a plus. He definitely reminds me of some of the better horses I’ve driven.” However, when Teague saw Goldberg in the paddock before the Metro Pace Final, he sensed something was amiss. The energetic colt who dazzled in his training miles and qualifiers appeared to be a shell of his former self. “He had his head down in the crossties and he just looked like he wasn’t even there. Something was wrong with him,” Teague remembered. Goldberg scratched sick out of the $685,000 stakes with a fever of 103 degrees and spent the next eight days recovering at Guelph University. After finally shipping home, Teague turned the colt out and shut him down for the year.  Teague was relieved when Goldberg felt like his old self training back at 3. The colt qualified a winner at Dover Downs February 21 and finished third in an overnight at the Meadowlands from post 10 on debut before taking on the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund eliminations. Goldberg took the first elimination in 1:53.2 March 21 and finished second to Chillaxin Away a week later in the second leg. Goldberg returned to capture the $100,000 final in gate-to-wire fashion in 1:51.2 March 4.  “I’ve won the Delaware stakes a couple times, but never with a horse that I own myself. It was going through the wire getting $50,000 instead of $5,000,” Teague said. “In the final, he just put everything together. He was strong out there, he left really strong and carried me through the whole mile. Once I popped the earplugs, he felt like he was supposed to, like he did last year. “It just puts everything into perspective of how much work we do put into these horses,” Teague continued. “Seeing him born, to breaking him as a yearling, to training him down as a 2-year-old, and finally bringing him back for 3-year-old stakes and you have to pay a lot in entry fees to stake him. You definitely see where your money is going and it’s definitely gratifying when you win a $100,000 race and he pays you back for all the work. It made everything perfect.” Off a pair of third place finishes at the Swamp that boosted his earnings to $101,150, Goldberg will set his sights on the $300,000 Art Rooney Pace at Yonkers Raceway May 25. Goldberg drew post one in the first $40,000 elimination Saturday night (May 18) and is the 5-2 second choice on the morning line. Brian Brown’s Air Force Hanover is 7-5 off a 1:50.1 victory in the Pennsylvania All Stars Series while Captain Malicious is 3-1 from post three. Buddy Hill, Price Hanover, and Melanie’s Teddy complete the sextet.  “It looks like it sets up pretty good,” Teague said. “You can’t beat drawing the rail at Yonkers. It’s definitely a perfect position. Couldn’t be more happy with him. I put him in at the Meadowlands and he raced good twice and I’ve been giving him a week off between every race, so he should be good. “Definitely when you have the rail, you have to protect position and be as close as you can. But you only have to beat two horses to get into the final, so that’s definitely going to be the number one thing.” If Goldberg wins the Rooney Final, it would be a meaningful win for Teague. After Chausettes Blanche tragically passed away with her second foal, Teague hopes Goldberg will honor her memory. “He’s definitely a very, very special colt to me. The bad thing is that when I bred her back, I lost her baby and I lost her,” Teague said. “Everything was great, and everything was gone, just that fast. One year, you got him, and he looks to be one of the better ones I’ve ever had. You bred her right back to Mr. Wiggles hoping for the same thing, but the next time, she was gone. “He’s the one and only one. He’s the only one I’ve got. I hope that he lives up to his potential and does her proud.” In addition to the regular $44,000 Open Handicap Pace and Trot, Saturday’s card features two $40,000 eliminations of the Art Rooney Pace and two $20,000 eliminations of the Lismore Pace.  First post time is 6:50 p.m. Yonkers Raceway features live harness racing Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. For entries to the races, click here.    By Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

Amal Hall (Jason Bartlett) and Quincy Blue Chip (Jim Morrill Jr.) won their Empire Breeders Classic (EBC) trotting fillies elimination races at Vernon Downs on Friday (May 17). Both races were for a purse of $12,500. In the first harness racing division Amal Hall ($4.30) went to the front and led to a first quarter of :27.2. Conway Kellyanne (Charlie Norris) then took over control and led to a half of :58.1 and to three-quarters in 1:27.2. Amal Hall, who is trained by Julie Miller for owners GTY Stable, Andy Miller Stable, and Dumain Heaven Farm, popped out of the pocket in the stretch and blew by to win in 1:56.4. Conway Kellyanne hung on for second. Pilgrims Lass (Mike Simons) finished third. Amal Hall is a three-year-old filly by Credit Winner. It was her first win in 2019. She now owns four career victories. In the second division, With Out A Doubt (Tyler Buter) charged out to the lead and led the way to a first quarter of :28.3. Quincy Blue Chip ($5.70), who is owned by Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc. and trained by Gareth Dowse, took over the lead on the back stretch. She led them to the half in :58.0. As she hit the three-quarter mark in 1:26.2, she would be joined by Winndevie (Trond Smedshammer) as they made the turn for home. Quincy Blue Chip shook lose in mid-stretch and held off a late charge by second place finisher Sweet Chapter (Matt Kakaley) to win in 1:54.3. Winndevie held on for third. Quincy Blue Chip                                   -- Fotowon photo   Quincy Blue Chip is a 3-year-old filly by Chapter Seven. It was her second win in 2019. She now has reached the winner's circle six times in her career. Here are the qualifiers for the EBC Final for 3-year-old trotting fillies on Memorial Day (May 27): Amal Hall, Conway Kellyanne, Pilgrims Lass, Sensibility, Quincy Blue Chip, Sweet Chapter, Winndevie, With Out A Doubt, and Gobi Princess. The alternate is Hanna Dreamgirl. The field is set for EBC final for 3-year-old colts and geldings. Post-Horse-Driver 1. Gettin Serious 2. Star Track Hanover 3. Skyway Kon Man 4. Whimzical Chapter 5. Gimpanzee 6. Mr Vicktor 7. Travel Winner 8. Cavill Hanover 9. Big Money Honey   Live racing returns to Vernon Downs with a 13 race card starting at 6:10 p.m. For more information go to   John Horne for Vernon Downs.

YONKERS, NY, Friday, May 17, 2019--Feelin' Red Hot (George Brennan, $8.30) prevailed from the pocket Friday night (May 17th), winning Yonkers Raceway's $44,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. It was a two-speed number as 7-5 choice Twinkle (Brent Holland) stuffed Feelin' Red Hot in behind before a :27.1 opening quarter-mile. The leader remained so through a :56.4 intermission and 1:25 three-quarters, with token pressure from Delightfulmemphisn (Jim Marohn Jr.). The early foot--from post position No. 7--would serve the pursuer well. Twinkle owned a length-and-a-quarter lead in and out of the final turn, but Feelin' Red Hot edged out and edged by. The lass, who was quite good in the preliminary rounds of the Blue Chip Matchmaker before a poor effort in the final, prevailed by three-quarters of a length in 1:52.3. Delightfulmemphisn continued well for third, with a closing Lispatty (Mark MacDonald) and Glenferrie Blade A (Jordan Stratton) settling for the minors. For third choice Feelin' Red Hot, a 6-year-old daughter of Feelin' Friskie co-owned (as Burke Racing) by (trainer) Ron Burke and Weaver Bruscemi, it was her sixth win in 15 seasonal starts (career 25-for-90). The exacta paid $23.20, the triple returned $64.50 and the superfecta paid $403. It was one of Brennan's five winners during the dozen-race program. Yonkers' mutuel windows open at 10 AM Saturday (May 18th) in advance of Pimlico's Preakness Day first post of 10:30 AM.   Frank Drucker Director of Publicity

Tay Tay M (Renaldo Morales III) wins the featured Fillies & Mares Open 1 Pace ($12,000) on Friday (May 17) at Tioga Downs. HP Sissy (Jim Meittinis) put up all the early numbers (:28.0, :56.4, 1:24.2) Tay Tay M ($20.60), who is trained by Kim Sears for owners Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, rode in the pocket all the way to the stretch. She would go to the front and hold off the late charge by second place finisher, Velocity McSweets (Mike Merton) to win in a lifetime best of 1:53.0. Northern Daily (Wally Hennesey) was third best. Tay Tay M is a 5-year-old mare by Six Of Diamonds. It was her third win this season. She now has 11 career victories. Mike Merton had three winners on the night. He got the wins with Lotus Seelster ($15.40), Gold Star Mysti ($9.30), and Marvelous Jet ($7.70). Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Saturday (May 18) with an eight race card starting at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to   John Horne for Tioga Downs.

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- "I got a great trip," winning driver Shawn McDonough said after guiding Labatt Hanover ($12.40) to a head victory over Barn Winner in the $10,000 Class A-B Handicap Trot on Friday night (May 17).   Drafting behind Barn Winner (Ray Fisher Jr.) until the top of the stretch, Labatt Hanover was sent into the passing lane where he chugged along until finally inching by in the shadow of the wire to collect the win. Empire Earl N (Drew Monti) was third.   While Labatt Hanover was first to cross the finish line, there were still some anxious moments for McDonough as he had to wait out an inquiry for a possible pylon violation.   "It had me a little worried," McDonough said of the inquiry. "I was close to clipping it but it worked out."   Labatt Hanover, giving Barn Winner a slight tussle for early command, dropped into second place and enjoyed the pocket trip through splits of :28.4, :58.0 and 1:28.3. It was a ploy that worked out well as Labatt Hanover went a seasonal best 1:58.3 over the fast track.   "I was happy sitting second," McDonough said in relinquishing the lead. "We were following a good horse in Barn Winner so I knew we'd get a good trip."   Owned by Cynthia and Gary Saj and trained by McDonough, Labatt Hanover (Muscle Hill-La Boheme) is a 6-year-old gelding that has now produced $20,190 in earnings this season and $114,708 lifetime.   David McNeight III and Monti finished the evening with driving doubles.   Racing will continue on Saturday evening with a 10-race card set. There's a special 7:15 p.m. post time in order to accommodate the running of the Preakness Stakes. Also, there's a $2,096 carryover in the Pick-5 that begins in the second race.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, results, entries, upcoming promotions and simulcast schedule, go to   by Brian J. Mazurek for Buffalo Raceway

Trenton, NJ — It is safe to say emotions have run the gamut for 18-year-old Zack Gray over the past year. On June 10, 2018, his dad, popular trainer/driver Bobby Gray, passed away at age 56 — shortly before Father’s Day. Flash forward to this past Saturday (May 11) at Saratoga Casino Hotel, the night before Mother’s Day. As sad as things were 11 months earlier, they were that joyous for the family when Zack earned his first harness racing driving win in his 36th start. Making it more special is that he won driving Cool Jack, a pacer that his his mom, Sheryl, co-owns with Joe Facin Jr. and David Faile. “It was pretty good because I figured that’s what (my dad) wanted me to do,” Gray said. “It felt good, but it was a little sad too. I know my mom was pretty happy.” That’s an understatement. “It was the best Mother’s Day present,” Sheryl said. “But it was exciting because it has been Zack’s dream since he was a little boy. Friday was a rough day for us as it was (exactly) 11 months since my husband’s passing. Zack’s Nana Gray and uncle had just drove from Florida and were there for the weekend. Zack is very well-liked and everyone was cheering for him at the home stretch.” Zack nearly got his first win last November with Cool Jack, missing by a neck in a third-place finish. On Saturday, the tandem had to come from behind, with Zack coolly taking advantage of fast early fractions as the leaders reached the opening quarter-mile in :27.1 and the half in :55.1. “I was sitting last at the quarter pole,” Gray said. “I saw the fractions and I thought, this is going to work out good because my horse absolutely flies home. I took the lead around the last turn and I won by three (and a half lengths). I was pretty happy. It was pretty good.” As he crossed the finish line in 1:54.3, Zack looked up and pointed his whip skyward in a salute to his dad who, like his son, was also well-liked and respected. “It took my dad a long time to win his first race and I think he’d be proud of me to accomplish it earlier than he did,” Zack said. “I knew mine would come at some point. You’ve just got to be patient.” Bobby Gray was licensed in 1982 and was a career amateur driver. He competed in the C.K.G. Billings Series and in amateur races predominantly in Maine. He also ran a small stable and amassed 189 wins, 183 seconds and 169 thirds in 1,412 lifetime starts. Those finishes pocketed $564,166 in purses. Perhaps his biggest legacy was doing all he could to care for his horses, and always being there to help his colleagues at the track. He apparently passed that trait on to family members, who were his number-one priority. “He was also well liked in the harness world,” Sheryl said. “Zack sure follows his footsteps in that aspect.” Bobby took his son under his wing and Zack remembers jogging his first horse at age 5. “I loved it right away,” he said. The family sold its stable in 2012 and soon moved from Maine to Saratoga. Bobby went to work for Jimmy Nickerson and Zack tagged along. “I didn’t really start working for somebody until two years ago,” he said. “I always helped my dad. I started working for Dave Spagnola and I worked there for a while.” Bobby became a huge supporter when Zack started driving, and early on some more emotions churned up. “He was always there when I started qualifying,” Gray said. “When I qualified a week after he died, it was kind of different. But I know that’s where he wanted me to be.” Zack Gray earned his first driving win in his 36th start on May 11 with Cool Jack. Melissa Simser-Iovino photo. Zack has driven Cool Jack in all but two of his starts since last November. He is trained by Amanda Facin, Joe’s daughter. “He’s been a good little horse for me; he’s a cool little horse,” Gray said. “And the people who help me out in the barn are just wonderful people. The Facin family helped me out with buying the horse and they’ve been there ever since.” Gray does not do any catch driving, and as far as helping out in stables he said, “I just kind of freelance,” mostly at Saratoga. He is trying to make his way in the business and has full support from Sheryl and sisters Dawn and Mikayla. “My mom is always there to root me on,” Gray said. “Good or bad, she says ‘You did a great job.’ And my two sisters are excellent, they cheer me on and give me support.” As far as driving goes, Zack will continue to do it for now, but has other plans. “If I can get some more wins now driving, I’ll do it,” he said. “But I like training too. I think I could go a little ways as a driver, but I’d like to be a trainer and drive my own stable.” Whatever he decides, his family will be right behind him with support, as will Bobby from up above.   by Rich Fisher USTA Web Newsroom Senior Correspondent

Yonkers, NY- The youngsters showed the way in the $8000 NAADA Trots on Thursday at Yonkers Raceway when 16-year old Brett Beckwith and 21 year old Tyler Miller were each victorious in their respective harness racing divisions. For Brett, son of Mark Beckwith, it was his maiden victory while Tyler, whose dad is Andy Miller, notched his second career triumph. And with their pedigrees one can only assume that winning will become commonplace for them in years to come. Beckwith handled Dark Pool for trainer Paul Fusco and acted like a veteran when he settled in the three hole on the first turn and was third at the quarter as the timer flashed :28.1. Then Beckwith moved first-up and had command at the halfway point in :58.2. "I swooped to the lead and then my horse just kept going," Beckwith said after the race. "Once we were in command I just let him ramble and we began to open daylight on the field." At the three quarters Dark Pool had three lengths on Tough Get Going, who was driven by Joe Faraldo. And in the lane Beckwith's trotter kept the pedal to the metal and cruised home an easy eight-length winner in an incredible 1:56 flat. "He(Dark Pool) was so wound- up that I had a hard time stopping him after the race,"Beckwith admitted. Tough Get Going held on for second money and Wygant Prince trotted home third best for Pearly Allen. The winner is owned by Vinnie Ginsberg. In his contest ,Tyler Miller started from the four-hole with Next Woman Up and angled his trotting mare directly to the pylons and was content to follow Cheeky Little Minx (Joe Pennacchio) past the quarter in :28 and the half in :57.2 , fractions forced by a parked-out Ladys Big Stormont, driven by Alan Schwartz. Pennacchio's charge had a length on her competition at the top of the lane and although the veteran mare was dead-game she couldn't rebuff Miller's Next Woman Up who came charging in the final strides to win in a photo in a time of 1:58.4. Third place went to Master Of Excuses driven by Monica Banca. Next Woman Up is owned by the Second Chance Stable and trained by Nick Surick. Next Thursday the top point-earners in the series will race in a $15,000 Final again at Yonkers Raceway.   by John Manzi for NAADA  

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Kaitlyn Rae broke into the win column for the first time this season as she was able to register a half length victory over Sentimental Lady in Buffalo Raceway's featured $8,400 Class B harness racing event for the distaff pacers. She covered the mile in 1:57.1 over the fast track.   After posting 14 victories and putting over $83,000 in the bank in 2018, it's been a tough go for Kaitlyn Rae to reach the winner's circle this year. She notch four second place finishes and a third in 13 tries during the drought but finally got that elusive first win on Wednesday night (May 15).   Cruising along in fourth place as Good Lookin Woman (Jim Morrill Jr.) put up fractions of :29.0, :59,1 and 1:27.4, Kaitlyn Rae (Ray Fisher Jr.) was first over and slowly cut into the lead.   Down the lane, Kaitlyn Rae ($3.30) was able to wear down the pace-setting Good Lookin Woman and hold back the late rushes of Sentimental Lady (Drew Monti) and Carrickmannon N (Kevin Cummings) who were second and third respectively.   Owned and trained by Riley Asher-Stalbaum, Kaitlyn Rae (Cheyenne Rei-I C U Lookin) is a 10-year-old mare that has now won $17,705 this season and $422,494 lifetime. It was also her 63rd career win.   Shawn McDonough completed the night with a driving/training double while Fisher Jr. collected two wins in the bike. Marc Shuttleworth had a pair of training victories.   Racing will continue on Friday night with an eight race card slated for 5 p.m. There's a $752 carryover in the Pick-5 which begins in the second race. There will be a 10-race program on Saturday with a special 7:15 p.m. post time in order to accommodate the running of the Preakness Stakes.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, entries, results, upcoming promotions and simulcast schedule, go to   by Brian J. Mazurek for Buffalo Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Monday, May 13, 2019-Twelve 3-year-old olds-10 colts and two geldings-were entered for Yonkers Raceway's Art Rooney Pace. The 29th Rooney begins with a pair of $40,000 eliminations this Saturday night (May 18th), with the first four finishers in each getting a seat at the table for the $300,000 final Saturday night, May 25th. The elimination go as Saturday night's sixth and ninth race, having drawn of such... First elim---1- Goldberg (Montrell Teague), 2-Air Force Hanover (Dave Miller), 3- Captain Malicious (Mark MacDonald), 4-Buddy Hill (Brian Sears), 5-Price Hanover (Dan Dube), 6- Melanie's Tedy (Jordan Stratton). Second elim-1-Just Plain Loco,g (Miller), 2-Rollwithpapajoe,g (Joe Bongiorno), 3-Bettor's Wish (Dexter Dunn), 4-Lyons Johnny Jnr (Tim Tetrick), 5-Blood Money (Scot Zeron), 6-Branquinho (Tyler Buter). The companion event, the 15th Lismore for sophomore pacing fillies, saw 10 ladies make their intentions known. Two $20,000 elims (races 3 and 5) go this Saturday, with the first quartet in each returning for the $109,000 (est.) final May 25th. First elim-1-Brooklyn Lilacs (Bongiorno) 2- Privacy Hanover (Jason Bartlett), 3- Mi Nina Bonita (Brent Holland), 4-As Time Goes By (Stratton), 5-Annie Hill (Sears). Second elim-1-Bestseller Hanover (Bartlett), 2- Queen of the Pride (Stratton), 3-Rock N McRoll (Dube), 4-Blue Ivy (Sears) Rockn' Philly (Tetrick). Post time for the dozen-race card is the usual 6:50 PM.   Frank Drucker Director of Publicity

On Monday May 13, the New York Sire Stakes made their first stop of the year at Monticello Raceway for 3 Year Old Pacing Colts, the conditions were less than ideal as it was a cold, rainy raw day that was reminiscent of a fall day and certainly not the middle of May. Hickfromfrenchlick, the Ray Schnittker trained harness racing son of So Surreal started from post position 4 and went off the 1/5 odds on favorite in the 6 - horse field. Hickfromfrenchlick (Mark Macdonald) lead the pack every step of the way, reeling off even rated fractions of 28.2, 58.1 1:28.1, American Mercury (Tim Tetrick) were the first to move down the backside as the outer flow developed with Stone Hanover right behind him. It looked like Hickfromfrenchlick was going in for an easy layup but American Mecury was not done yet as the duo paced home strong, but Hickfromfrenchlick rebuffed American Mercury by a scant neck to score in 1:55, pacing his last ¼ in 27 in the fastest mile of the afternoon. Stone Hanover finished 3rd, coming home in 26.4. Hickfromfrenchlick is owned by Ray Schnittker, Nolamaura Racing LLC and TC Spatorico. In the second heat of Sire Stakes, it was a race of the Major's, Major Blake left fast from post 4 from the gate but decided to take the 2- hole tuck as Major March from the rail cut the steady fractions of 28.2,58.1 1:26.4, Respect The Flag and Astarie angled out past the ¾ maker in an effort to start tracking down Major Blake, but their efforts were thwarted as he coasted to a 2 length victory in 1:55. Major March is trained by soon to be Hall of Famer Linda Toscano, the Art Major - Mach You And Me colt is owned by Bay Pond Racing Stable of Malvern, PA. Major Blake was 2nd and Astaire finished 3rd Major March                    --Geri  Schwarz photo The highly touted Reigning Deo highlighted the last heat of Sire Stakes in the 6th race, the Rock N Roll Heaven colt started from the rail and was the 3/5 favorite going to post. Dealer's Table (PP4) and Jason Bartlett cut the soft fractions to the ¾ pole 29.3, 59.3 1:28.1. Rollwithpapajoe (T. Buter) was the first to come off the rail approaching the half, he continued the overland route with no cover. Heading for home he rolled to an easy 3 length win over Reigning Deo held on for 2nd place followed by Covered Bridge. Rollwithpapajoe is trained Jenn Bongiorno, The Roll With Joe colt is owned by Barbara Bongiorno, BK Lambos and D. Libertos. The Excelsior A contest's saw Shim (American ideal - Feel Life) leave the gate unhurried to rally over Caviart Cale in 1:58.3 for Trainer - Driver and part owner Pat Lachance, in the second A class Surreal Art (So Surreal - Artcotic) was content to sit the pocket while Shanghai Bobby cut the mile. It was a good battle down the lane between the two but Surreal Art hung on for a neck victory over Shanhai Phil in 1:55.1 Sire Stats for the afternoon showed American Ideal and So Surreal both had 2 winners, Jason Bartlett and Patrick LaChance each had a driving double on the chilly afternoon. $461,000 was wagered on the 8- race card for a per race average of $57,625.   By: Shawn Wiles

Hightstown, NJ — Filly pacer DD Delicious made a good impression on harness racing trainer Travis Alexander last season as a 2-year-old. Unfortunately for Alexander and the horse’s owner, the Mark Wasserman-led Fiddler’s Creek Stables, physical maturity issues prevented her from making an impression beyond the training center at Mark Ford’s farm in upstate New York. But by starting this spring with wins in her first two career races, DD Delicious looks as though she is out to remedy that situation. Her next opportunity to continue making a name for herself comes Tuesday (May 14) when she steps up from conditioned classes to state-bred stakes action as Yonkers Raceway hosts the first round of the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old female pacers. It will not be an easy test. DD Delicious competes in the first of two $85,250 divisions and faces a field that includes Zero Tolerance and St Somewhere, who were both winners on the Grand Circuit in 2018, as well as So Awesome, who lost last year’s New York Sire Stakes final by a nose to Money Shot Hanover. DD Delicious and driver Matt Kakaley are 5-1 on the morning line. Zero Tolerance, with David Miller driving for trainer Joe Holloway, is the 5-2 favorite. In her most recent start, DD Delicious won in 1:54.1 at Yonkers with Scott Zeron in the sulky. The filly won her debut in 1:53.3 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono with Kakaley at the lines. “I’m looking forward to seeing what my filly can do,” Alexander said. “I know Matt thinks a lot of her. She’s been a nice filly all along; I was really high on her last year. She’s not a flashy filly, she just goes about her work. “The best thing about her (previous race) at Yonkers was Scott said she got around the turns as quick as the straightaway. For her, that’s a little bit of an advantage. All the fillies in that race are very nice fillies. If I can get close, I’m not saying I can beat them, but I’ll be happy with a check.” DD Delicious, a daughter of Art Major out of D D Delightful, was bred by Fiddler’s Creek Stables. She impressed Alexander with her speed last year while training down but needed more time to mature physically before she could get to the races. “She had some growing up issues with her knees,” Wasserman said. “We try not to rush our horses. When a horse says they’re ready, then we do it. We turned her out and she came back great. She just needed time to grow up.” In addition to the New York Sire Stakes, DD Delicious is staked lightly on the Grand Circuit. “Sometimes hindsight is 20/20,” Wasserman said. “We didn’t stake her heavy but we’re very happy with where we are. I want to see if we’ve got a nice stakes filly. One step at a time. I’m really excited about (Tuesday). This is her first real challenge. It’s only her third race, but she’s been racing really well. She likes her job. She wants to go; she wants to race.” Said Alexander, “I was very fortunate that Fiddler’s Creek Stables had the patience to wait on her. She’s starting to show what I believed in all along.” Racing begins at 6:50 p.m. Tuesday at Yonkers. The New York Sire Stakes divisions are races nine and 10. Money Shot Hanover, with Tim Tetrick driving for trainer Mark Harder, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in the second division. For complete entries, click here.    by Ken Weingartner USTA Media Relations Manager

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