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As we really started to get into the Group 1 races today at the harness racing meeting at Tabcorp Park Melton, the Kiwis were off to a great start, winning the first two with a bit in reserve. Speeding Spur was a warm favourite in the $56,000 Woodlands Stud Colts/Geldings final on the back of his outstanding Victoria Derby win, even though he had drawn out in the carpark at barrier 13.   Driver Josh Dickie was lucky to duck a couple of early breakers in front of him with Speeding Spur but as soon as the speed buttoned off near the mile, Josh was off on Speeding Spur, circling the field to lead with just under 1400 metres to run.   Josh held Speeding Spur back to the field down the back straight until Illawong Armstrong who had broke badly early looped the field and took the race to the Kiwi star going past the 500 metres mark.   These two star three year olds drew clear on the corner and settled down to fight it out but Speeding Spur held Illawong Armstrong by a length.   Cold Crusher ran on well for third ahead of Kyvalley Boomerang but the first two were a class above their rivals.   Speeding Spur trotted the 2240 metres in a smart 2:48.4, a mile rate of 2:1 with closing sectionals of 58.8 and 30.   It was the son of Pegasus Spur's 14 win at start 22 and took his earnings to $331,031.   Josh Dickie was relieved more than anything post race.   " He was a bit off today and I think he is feeling the effects of a long season."   " But he is great trier and thats what got him home today.   " Dad said to me that he was looking for the paddock and that is where he is heading now."   " It is great to come over here and win a Group 1 on their big day so I am rapt, Josh said.   Speeding Spur     Harnesslink Media

Sunday is shaping up as a definitive day for All Black halfback Andy Ellis. Ellis is part of a harness racing syndicate who race duel Group I winner Speeding Spur, a $1.30 favourite with the New Zealand TAB to win the Group I Breeders Crown final for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings at Melton on Sunday. The John and Josh Dickie trained Speeding Spur has not been helped by a tricky second row draw for the 2240m race, but his overwhelming favouritism suggests he should be good enough to overcome that. The Speeding Spur camp will be looking for redemption after the son of Pegasus Spur made an uncharacteristic break which ended his winning chances at the Harness Jewels at Ashburton in late May.  Ellis was on track to watch the disappointing result and will be looking for redemption of his own around three hours after Speeding Spur's race which starts at 3.09pm NZT. At 6.30pm the All Blacks squad for the Rugby World Cup will be announced. Fellow Speeding Spur owner Kieran Read is a certainty but Ellis' chances of playing in back-to-back World Cups appear to be dwindling. With Aaron Smith and TJ Perenara seemingly assured of their spots, Ellis also has to battle with a now fully fit Tawera Kerr-Barlow. And coach Steve Hansen has also hinted at only taking two halfbacks. If Ellis does miss out on what would be his final World Cup chance, he should hopefully be able to call himself a Breeders Crown winner. A Speeding Spur win looks a much better bet than an All Black call up on paper. Ellis and Read were invited into harness racing ownership by Woodlands Stud and have never looked back after first tasting success with Betters Delight pacer Victors Delight. Also in the Speeding Spur ownership is Crusaders forwards coach Dave Hewett and Commonwealth gold medallist Dick Tayler. A World Cup winner in 2011, Ellis makes no secret of his love of harness racing. New Zealand trained runners hold favouritism in seven of the eight Breeders Crown Group I events. Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen's 2-year-old trotting filly High Gait is a $1.20 favourite from the ace, as is stablemate Our Waikiki Beach who starts from the outside of the front row in the 2-year-old colts and geldings pacers final. Fellow All Stars pacers Our Dream About Me ($1.40) and Follow The Stars ($1.70) hold favouritism in the 2-year-old fillies and 3-year-old colts and geldings final. Our Dream About Me will have to come from barrier 12 but Follow The Stars has drawn four and inside main rival Menin Gate. The Bunty Hughes-trained The Orange Agent is at $1.50 to win the 3-year-old fillies pacing final from the second line and Paul Nairn's Conon Bridge is a $1.30 shot to win the 2-year-old trot for colts and geldings on the back of drawing the ace. The 3-year-old trotting final for fillies is the only race the Kiwis do not hold favouritism but Barry Purdon's Alannah Hall is a $14 chance from the outside of the front line. Mat Kermeen Reproduced with permission of Stuff NZ   -  Check site here

The big harness racing day at Maryborough today with its sole focus on the straight out trotter is akin to the holy grail for followers of the squaregaiter. The jewel in the crown today was the $75,000 Victoria Trotting Derby which drew together the best Australian three year old trotters with the undisputed New Zealand champion three year old Speeding Spur. Speeding Spur's main problem was that he drew barrier 13 which was the outside of the second line in the ten horse field. Due to scratchings there was only four runners on the front line and Josh Dickie, the driver of Speeding Spur took advantage of the small front line and sent the son of Pegasus Spur forward from the start and grabbed the lead within the first 200 metres. Blue Sky Commander settled into the trail behind Speeding Spur with My Arya facing the breeze. Second favourite Illawong Armstrong circled the field mid-race to sit outside Speeding Spur but he really latched on and as a result there was no let up in the hot speed as he pulled himself into the ground. Turning for home Speeding Spur still held the front but was being attacked on all sides. Blue Sky Commander and Kerryn Manning were issuing a challenge up the passing lane after their soft trip while Amarula and John Caldow were finishing on stoutly centre track. However as he has done all season in New Zealand, Speeding Spur kicked bigtime when he was challenged and was drawing away again at the line with Josh Dickie giving a little victory salute as he hit the line. Blue Sky Commander ran into second with Amarula battling the last bit to run third. Amarula's run was full of merit as she did have a short gallop in the score up but was with the field at dispatch. Speeding Spur trotted the 2690 metres in 3:21.8, a mile rate of 2:00.7 which was a new track record. Trained by Josh and John Dickie at Clevedon in South Auckland, todays win by Speeding Spur was his 11th from 14th starts as a three year old and took his seasonal earnings over the $250,000 mark. His win today from barrier 13 after being attacked savagely mid race in track record time is further proof if any was needed that he is a superstar in the making. New Zealand breeders would have had a big smile on their faces post race as the first three home were all bred in New Zealand and that carried on the great record that New Zealand bred trotters have in Australian age group classics. Harnesslink Media    

Daylon Miracle (Pegasus Spur) trotted the fastest time of the year at  the harness racing meeting at Saratoga Casino and Raceway on Sunday afternoon as the Rene Allard-trained mare cruised to victory in the $18,000 Open Trot in 1:54.3. Overcoming their assigned outside post in the early going, Daylon Miracle and driver Billy Dobson charged out to the lead in 27.4 and after covering the first half in 56.3 trotted away in the stretch for the convincing Sunday score. The lone mare bested the boys for her ninth victory in sixteen seasonal tries. Allard and Dobson also teamed up for Saturday night's Open winner as pacer Crombie A scored for the first time in the local feature. Daylon Miracle's win time was a fifth of a second faster than the mark set by Slugfest in May as the fastest of the season by a local trotter. Slugfest (Jay Randall) was the runner up to Daylon Miracle on Sunday while longshot Pop I (Harry Landy) closed to finish third. The race's 1-5 favorite in the wagering, Daylon Miracle has now prevailed in both of her starts in the Sunday trotting feature as she registered a convincing victory in June in what was a $19,500 Open. Live racing resumes on Thursday at Saratoga with a first post time set for 4:00pm. Melissa Simser  

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 27, 2015--If your favorite harness racing driver is Dan Dube and your favorite number is four, congratulations and go collect. Dube went "four-th" Saturday night, winning both halves of Yonkers Raceway's soggy $42,000 co-featured Open Handicaps. Great Vintage ($6.20) had nary an anxious moment in the weekly pacing feature, working around a returning P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett) and strolling through fractions of :27.4, :57.1, 1:25.2 and 1:53.2. Great Vintage whipped 19-10 choice P H Supercam--out four weeks prior to this start--by a couple of lengths. Texican N (Eric Carlson) was a three-hole third, with Rock on Moe (Jordan Stratton) and a tough-trip All Bets Off (George Brennan) settling for the remainder. For second choice Great Vintage, a 7-year-old son of American Ideal trained by Jimmy Takter for co-owners his wife, Christina, John Fielding and a pair of Gorans (Anderberg and Falk) it was his third win in five seasonal starts. The exacta paid $19, with the triple returning $62.50. The week's marquee trot saw 11-10 choice Daylon Miracle--in one notch after an inside scratch--duplicate the down-the-road (:28.3, :58.2, 1:27, 1:56.4) MO of Great Vintage. Daylon Miracle held off a second move of outside assignee Luminosity (Brennan) by a length-and-a-half, with Backstreet Hanover (Tyler Buter), Rock of Cashel (Eric Goodell) and Lorenzo Dream (Carlson) rounding out the payees. For Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur owned (as Allard Racing) and trained by Rene Allard, it was her eighth win in 14 '15 tries. The exacta (two wagering favorites) paid $11.20, the triple returned $47.80 and the superfecta paid $165.50. The Raceway's live season continues Monday night (7:10 PM), Tuesday matinee (1 PM), then Thursday through Saturday (all at 7:10 PM). Note Sunday matinees are done until November. Evening simulcasting accompanies all night programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

Daylon Miracle (Pegasus Spur) became the second consecutive mare to win the Open Trot at Saratoga Casino and Raceway as she outclosed her harness racing rivals on Sunday in her local debut. The six year old mare got a second over trip and powered into the lead in the stretch before stopping the timer in 1:55.1. Fellow Pocono Downs invader Zooming (Wally Hennessey) held strong for second despite a first over journey while the race's frontrunner Zoey De Vie (Jim Devaux) had to settle for third. Daylon Miracle, who scored her seventh win in 13 seasonal tries, became the fourth different Rene Allard trainee to earn a victory in the local Open this year. The race's 2-1 public choice was driven to victory by Billy Dobson in the $19,500 Sunday feature. Daylon Miracle became the second mare in as many weeks to prevail in the Open Trot after Chris Marino's Tweet Me won her first local feature last Sunday. Live racing resumes at Saratoga on Thursday with three year old filly pacers featured as part of the New York Sire Stakes. First post time is set for 4:00pm Mike Sardella

It is quickly coming around to that point of the New Zealand harness racing season where we start to hand out the gongs for best performed in each age group and gait divisions. Harnesslink thought we would do a review of each of the categories with our view on where the contenders sit. This is a review of the 3 year old trotting colts / geldings division. 1) Speeding Spur - 2015 Season:  11 starts,    9 wins,    1 seconds, 0 thirds,  Lt $211,296 Hard to know where to start with Speeding Spur. Not only was the son of Pegasus Spur a dominant performer all season but it was in a year where there was great depth to the three year old trotting ranks. His two defeats both came at Ashburton but he went super on both occasions and lost nothing in defeat either time. The rest of the season was nine starts for nine wins, both Derbies and the Sires Stakes and several track and New Zealand records in the process. Should be a unanimous choice in this division. 2) Monbet - 2015 Season:    10 starts,    4 wins,    3 seconds,    0 thirds,    Lt $68,114 One of those horses who never seems to get the rub of the green on raceday. Drew poorly and outside of Speeding Spur in most of their clashes but pushed him close a couple of times after doing plenty of work. The son of Love You was never really driven aggressively in his races as he is such a big young immature horse and that should pay off in the long term for the connections. 3) Prince Fearless -  2015 Season: 9 starts,  2 wins,    2 seconds,    2 thirds,   Lt $66,262 Has one string to his bow and that is he did beat Speeding Spur once on his merits which is something no other horse in this division can say. Another very immature looking horse still and did well to be so competitive for suck a gangly looking youngster. The son of Majestic Son has all the attributes of a top horse but just needs to strengthen up and he will more than a match for those above him. Selection With a record of nine wins and a second from eleven starts there can no doubt that Speeding Spur had a huge season and should be a unanimous choice in this division. Harnesslink Media

It is quickly coming around to that point of the New Zealand harness racing season where we start to hand out the gongs for best performed in each age group and gait divisions. Harnesslink thought we would do a review of each of the categories with our view on where the contenders sit. This is the Harnesslink review of the two year old trotting fillies 1) High Gait - 2015 Season:    6 starts,    5 wins,    1 seconds,    0 thirds,    Lt $61,941 The daughter of Muscles Yankee was just a natural two year old trotter who was outstanding throughout the season. Beaten in the Harness Jewels but the result had a lot to do with her drawing barrier twelve on the big day. Her win prior to the Harness Jewels at Addington was outstanding and probably the run of the season in the two year old trots. High Gait won the most races and the most money in the two year old division and it is hard to see how she doesn't win the gong for best two year old trotting filly.  2) Missandei - 2015 Season:    4 starts,    1 wins,    1 seconds,    1 thirds,    Lt $60,085 Smart Angus Hall filly who was a late arrival to the competition but capped it off with a tenacious win in the Harness Jewels. Drew beautifully at barrier two in the Harness Jewels which helped bigtime when her main danger drew poorly on the second line but still got the job done. If the season had gone on for another couple of months, Missandei may have showed that wasn't a one off but that is not how the system works. High Gait does hold a two - one advantage over Missandei on raceday. 3) Wilma's Mate - 2015 Season:    8 starts,    2 wins,    2 seconds,    2 thirds,  Lt $30,036 High speed daughter of Pegasus Spur who was not far away from the two above. Threw the toys out once or twice but very competitive in the main and looks to have a big future. Never got the rub of the green in a lot of her races and unlucky not to have won more than two races during the season. Selection Has to be High Gait with five wins from six starts and beaten into second by a half head in the other. The most wins and the most money should cement it for her. Harnesslink Media

Daylon Miracle wore down the stubborn Cowgirl Hall and captured Wednesday's $22,500 Filly & Mare Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot at the harness racing meeting at The Meadows. Cowgirl Hall got the early lead but had to endure a 27.1 first quarter to do so. When Daylon Miracle challenged first over from third for Aaron Merriman, the mares dueled for the rest of the mile, with Daylon Miracle 1-1/4 lengths ahead at the wire in 1:54.1. Anaffairtoremember, the winner's stablemate, finished third. Bill Bercury trains and owns Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur-Daylon Marvel who now boasts $498,937 in career earnings. Tony Hall, Dave Palone and Merriman each fashioned a triple on the 14-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Thursday, when the program features a $100,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series stake for 3-year-old colt and gelding trotters. First post is 12:55 PM. Evan Pattak The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

WASHINGTON, PA, April 25, 2015 -- Daylon Miracle stalked 2014 Trotter of the Year Shake It Cerry from the pocket, then blew by the harness racing champ in the Lightning Lane to pull off a 5-1 upset in Friday's inaugural edition of the $51,100 The Meadows Maturity for mare trotters 4 and older. In the first start of her 4-year-old campaign, Shake It Cerry led the field through a snappy 1:24.3 three-quarters but tired late and faded to fourth, beaten 5 lengths. Classic Martine, the 2014 Mare Trotter of the Year, was buried from post 9 and never got involved, finishing sixth. Daylon Miracle triumphed in 1:53.3, 4 lengths better than Cowgirl Hall, with the winner's stablemate, Anaffairtoremember, third. That gave locally based horses a sweep and provided a bonanza for bettors who backed them to show. With Shake It Cerry off the ticket, the show payoffs for the top three were $9.40, $19.00 and $22.40, respectively. Dave Palone, who piloted Shake It Cerry, said there were no obvious problems with her as she suffered only the sixth loss in her 29-race career. "She felt great," Palone said. "I really got left alone the second quarter and got a nice breather up the backside. She probably just needed the work. She'll be just fine." Winning driver Aaron Merriman, on the other hand, was sitting with a handful of live horse and knew it. "Anywhere down the backside, I felt like I could have pulled at any time. She was that good," Merriman said of the 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur-Daylon Marvel, who now has banked $474,907 in her career. "But I was following a great horse and a great driver. David made my decision (to stay in the pocket) for me. His horse didn't look as sharp, and I thought he carried her a lot farther than she would have gone with somebody else." Bill Bercury, who owns and trains Daylon Miracle and Anaffairtoremember, called it the biggest win of his career. He had spoken of a 1-2 finish for his mares days before the race. It was a bold vision, and Bercury's mares nearly pulled it off with their 1-3 result. "We beat the two best mares in the country from last year," he said. "I'm very excited about that. I had a lot of confidence in both my mares. They both have a lot of heart. They both really like racing, and that means so much. I love them." He said his mares are headed to a May 3 stake at Miami Valley, where they expect to take on the best in their division again. "You have to remember -- this was the first start for the two mares we beat today," he said. "Next week will be a little tougher. At least now we feel we belong there." The Meadows Maturity for stallions and geldings 4 and older is set for Saturday, May 2 as part of the track's special Kentucky Derby Day program. $33,700 Do Me Honor Pace Friday's card also featured the $33,700 championship of the Do Me Honor Pace for sophomore fillies, which was taken by Dobre Povedane in 1:54.2. The daughter of Well Said-Vysoke Tatry sat patiently in the pocket for Mike Wilder before exploding in the stretch to down the early leader, Somewhere Fameous, by 1-1/4 lengths. One Over Par overcame traffic problems to earn show. Dobre Povedane crossed the wire first in the series opening leg but broke stride in the Lightning Lane after wrestling with Wilder and was disqualified. Following that episode, trainer Tim Twaddle made some rigging changes that Wilder said helped considerably. "Tim made a couple adjustments," Wilder said. "It's tough with a green horse, going from track to track, never been here. In the first leg, it was kind of my fault. She wasn't steering the best, and I kind of chased her off her feet. "Tonight, she felt super behind the gate, and I thought I'd give her a chance. She fell in a good spot and raced great." David Prushnok and John Prushnok campaign Dobre Povedane. Tony Hall drove five winners on the 12-race card while trainer Randy Bendis fashioned a triple. The pair teamed to capture the $22,500 Filly & Mare Not Listed Preferred/Preferred Handicap Pace with Certified Ideal, who poured through the Lightning Lane to prevail in 1:52.2 and extend her career bankroll to $321,972 for owners Mike Novosel, Jr., Tom Pollack, James Walton and Bendis. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

The first of the Group 1 races at tonights big harness racing meeting at Alexandra Park was the $80,000 Northern Trotting Derby which looked a two horse race on paper and for once that's how it played out. Habibti Ivy and Blair Orange led early as expected before handing up to the warm favourite, Speeding Spur with co-trainer Joshua Dickie in the bike. The main danger to Speeding Spur in Monbet with Ricky May in the bike settled into the one by one early on the back of the smart Prince Fearless and that was the running order up front for the first lap. With just over a lap to go Arya and Mark Purdon worked around to the death seat, forcing Monbet back a further place to three back in the running line. Speeding Spur really upped the ante down the back and the first horse to feel the pinch was Prince Fearless who started to struggle to hold Arya's back which forced Monbet and Ricky May to come out three wide. Speeding Spur really upped the ante on the corner and straightened four lengths clear with Monbet and Arya still finishing on. Late in the piece Monbet took a lot of ground off Speeding Spur but the son of Pegasus Spur was never in any danger of being beaten. Arya never gave up and stuck on well for third in front of Prince Fearless who kept whacking away to finish fourth. Speeding Spur trotted the 2700 metres in 3:25.4, a mile rate of 2:02.4 with closing sectionals of 56.3 and 27.7  Joshua Dickie was in awe of the performance of Speeding Spur. " I knew he would better than last week but he just felt super tonight" " His work during during the week had been great and we were pretty confident tonight." "Dad has done a great job of having him peak for the Derbies and a lot of the credit must go to him," Joshua said. Trainer John Dickie was all smiles post race. " We had him a bit short last week but this week he was right on the mark. "I was really confident going into the race and he didn't let us down," John said. The plans for Speeding Spur for the rest of the season are already set. " He will go to the $75,000 sales race at Addington on May 15th and then to the Harness Jewels two weeks later, " John said. Monbet put in another huge run for second, making up a lot of ground on the leader off a 56.3 last 800 metres while the run of Arya was much more in keeping with her ability. Harnesslink Media  

The first of the group races on tonights big night of harness racing at Alexandra Park was the $55,000 Lone Star Riccarton Sires Stakes Championship and it  looked to be a two horse battle once the draw came out with Speeding Spur drawing beautifully at three with arch rival Prince Fearless at four. However all that changed 100 metres after the start when Prince Fearless went into a wild gallop losing all chance. Josh Dickie worked the Pegasus Spur colt  to the front after 300 metres from Habibti Ivy and Blair Orange who settled into the trail on the favourites back The rest of the field were in Indian file apart from Monbet and Ricky May who slowly worked their way forward to sit on the wheel of Speeding Spur with 800 metres to go.  Josh upped the tempo with Speeding Spur down the back the last time but Monbet stuck with him and was still on his wheel as they turned for home. All the way up the straight Monbet slowly took ground off Speeding Spur but come the finishing line was still a nose back with Habibti Ivy making ground up the passing lane to be only a 1/2 neck away in third. Josh was happy to have won the $55,000 feature but thought Speeding Spur wasn't 100% on his game tonight. " He didn't really switch on tonight like he can and was gawking about down the back straight." " With so many big races coming up we haven't done that much with him and didn't take him to the trials last Saturday so he will improve on tonight's run next week." " They were getting really close late but his way of racing with his neck stuck out helped in the end," Josh said. Monbet went huge in second and is a live chance next week to reverse the result if he can just for once draw inside Speeding Spur and Prince Fearless. Harnesslink Media  

WASHINGTON, PA, April 6, 2015 -- Flying Muscles and Chef Lee, the 1-9 and 1-5 favorites, respectively, justified harness racing bettors' faith in them Monday at The Meadows, as each captured a $17,500 opening-leg division of the Tamarind Trot. The series for 3-year-old colts and geldings honors Tamarind, one of the track's top active trotters, who is owned and trained by Bill Bercury. Flying Muscles acquitted himself well in the recent Ken Weaver Memorial Trot for 3- and 4-year-olds, finishing second in the championship. Without older competitors to face, he was even more impressive, claiming the lead for Dave Palone past the quarter and prevailing geared down in 1:58.4. Early leader Only The Brave was 2 lengths back in second, with Knucklebiter third. Todd Rooney trains the Muscle Massive-Maker A Laker gelding and owns with David Lee and Eldon Thompson. Chef Lee, who broke his maiden last time out in his 11th try, trotted like a polished pro for Mike Wilder, moving to the front at the quarter pole and scoring in 2:00.1, 4 lengths better than Bettin Bruce. Stage Hand K completed the ticket. Norm Parker owns and trains the Cantab Hall-Summer Savory gelding. In the $20,000 Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, Daylon Miracle did what she does best -- show up the boys. The lone mare in the field triumphed on the front end for Aaron Merriman and owner/trainer Bercury in 1:54.1. The pocket-sitting Tall Cotton saved place, 2 lengths in arrears, while Big And Little earned show. Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur-Daylon Marvel who now boasts $444,357 in career earnings, has faced colts, stallions and geldings in five of her last six outings, collecting three wins and two thirds. Merriman piloted five winners on the 14-race card while Palone and Wilder each enjoyed a triple. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

WASHINGTON, PA, March 31, 2015 -- After more than holding her own against the track's top male trotters, Daylon Miracle relished her return to the harness racing distaff ranks, easily capturing Tuesday's $18,000 Filly & Mare Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot at The Meadows. Daylon Miracle faced all comers in her four most recent outings, collecting two wins and a pair of show finishes. In Tuesday's event, however, she was dominant, quarter-poling to the front for Aaron Merriman and scoring in 1:54.1. Early leader Whata Donato was second, 2-3/4 lengths back, with Unefoisdansmavie a rallying third. Bill Bercury owns and trains Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur - Daylon Marvel who boosted her career bankroll to $434,357. Eric Goodell, who recently collected career victory 5,000, drove six winners on the 14-race card, including a pair for trainer Paul Kennedy. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

WASHINGTON, PA, March 17, 2015 -- Terror Of the Nite rolled to victory in a career-best 1:54.1 to notch his third straight in the Walter Russell Memorial Pace at The Meadows. Heavenly Knox scored in a sizzling 1:52.4 in the other $12,000 split in Tuesday's third leg of the harness racing series for 3- and 4-year-old colts, stallions and geldings. The championship legs of the Walter Russell and three other current series at The Meadows are set for Friday, March 27, first post 6:55 PM. Dave Palone gave Terror Of The Nite -- the 1-9 favorite -- a comfortable 58.2 front half, and when the 4-year-old son of Western Terror-Her Odyssey sprinted home in 55.4, he assured that he would be positioned for a series sweep. The pocket-sitting Native Dude was second, 7-1/2 lengths back, with Hickory Terrific third. Ron Burke trains Terror Of The Nite for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Phillip Collura. It was one of seven wins on the 14-race program for Palone. Tuesday's card also featured a pair of top trots. In the $22,500 Filly & Mare Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap, Cowgirl Hall looked sharp off a three-month layoff, collecting a front-end victory in 1:54.4. Whata Donato, who was used hard early, held on for place, 4-1/4 lengths in arrears, while Anaffairtoremember rallied for show. Palone drove the 6-year-old daughter of Cash Hall - Centerfold Hall, who now boasts $658,993 in lifetime earnings, for Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Jack Piatt III and Michael Rosenthal. In the $18,000 Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap, Daylon Miracle relished her status as the only female in the field -- and the 7-5 favorite -- as she dueled for the early lead before cruising home for Aaron Merriman in 1:55.1, 2-1/4 lengths ahead of TSM Photo Bugger. Tamarind completed the ticket. Bill Bercury owns and trains Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur-Daylon Marvel who extended her career bankroll to $423,197. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino  

Harness racing meetings at Oamaru always seem to bring the best out of horses trained by Margo Nyhan and her partner Peter Davis. Hardly a meeting goes by at the North Otago raceway without the couple registering a win or two and yesterday was no exception with the trainer/driver duo racking up two more wins on what must be fast becoming their favourite track. First up was the maiden trotter The Zigmeister who worked to the front from barrier six for Peter Davis and after being steadied mid race had enough in reserve to hold out the late burst of Trial Separation and clear maidens at just his second lifetime start. The five year old grey son of Monkey Bones ran about in the straight a touch and there appears plenty of scope for improvement with a bit more raceday experience. Peter Davis was not surprised by yesterdays win. " He has always had a lot of ability right from the start but has had more than a few issues." " As a two year old he was going super but curbed a hock so we put him aside." "When we got him back in he was a different horse who couldn't trot a yard." " We brought him back at three but he was still all at sea so in the end we put him out for nearly fifteen months." " This time in he was close to getting the sack but has turned the corner lately and is finally getting back to what he showed us as a two year old." " He qualified at Methven just two weeks ago so he has come a long way in a very short time." " We will take him back to the trials now and try to give him some ringcraft to go with the ability," Peter said. The second winner for the day was the Oamaru track specialist Sarah Palin. The six year old daughter of Pegasus Spur has a real affinity for the North Otago track with her record after yesterday's win standing at eight starts for three wins and three seconds. As with most of the Margo Nyhan trained runners, Sarah Palin has exemplary standing start manners and was first away yesterday for Peter Davis from barrier one but quickly handed up to the free going Bet's Sun after 400 metres.  Given a lovely run in the trail albeit several lengths behind the tearaway leader for the rest of the trip, Sarah Palin used the passing lane to good effect in the straight to hold out a late challenge from Live The Dream by a length and a quarter. It was the mares sixth lifetime win and along with twenty two placings took her earnings over the $62,000 mark. Peter would love a few more as genuine as Sarah Palin. " She is a great horse to have in the stable as she is so genuine" " That was her best performance of her career yesterday as she had to drag the field up to the tearaway leader and 3000 metres has never been her favourite distance so it was a great run under the circumstances." " Every time she goes off the place she gives you 100% so you can't ask for any more than that," Peter said. Punters would be well advised to take note of any runners in the black and white silks from the Nyhan barn at future meetings at Oamaru. Harnesslink Media   

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