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WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 20, 2019 -- Delcrest Holiday stalked the race leader from the pocket, then poured through the Lightning Lane to capture his second straight harness racing victory in Wednesday's feature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Conditioned Trot. Delcrest Holiday grabbed the early lead for Dave Palone but released Rising MVP in favor of the pocket. When Palone pointed him inside, Delcrest Holiday surged past Rising MVP to down him by 1/2 length in 1:54.4, with Deweyknowigotit third. Ron Burke trains the winner, a 4-year-old Holiday Road-Northern Kitti gelding who extended his lifetime bankroll to $118,707, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. Aaron Merriman and trainer Trent Stohler teamed for a pair of victories on the 12-race card while Dan Rawlings, Mike Wilder and Palone each enjoyed a double. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday, when the program features a $46,535.23 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. by Evan Pattak, for the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Date, 2019 -- The Meadows will offer six harness racing Holiday Claiming Series in December, each with two preliminary legs and championships worth an estimated $15,000-$20,000. The series are: Filly & Mare $10,000 Claiming Pace; Filly & Mare $20,000 Claiming Pace; $10,000 Claiming Trot; $20,000 Claiming Trot; Horse & Gelding $10,000 Claiming Pace; Horse & Gelding $20,000 Claiming Pace. Each series begins the week of Dec. 9, with all finals contested on Monday, Dec. 30. Nominations close Friday, Nov. 22. (Nominations postmarked Nov. 22 will be accepted.) Nomination forms are available on the Website of the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association, www.themsoa.com. For more information, contact the Race Office, 724.225.9897. The Super Hi-5 jackpot at The Meadows has grown again. Wednesday’s card features a Super Hi-5 jackpot of $44,179.75 as well as a $912.18 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). The Super Hi-5 is offered on the final race of each live card. First post for Wednesday’s 12-race program is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 19, 2019 -- Already harness racing's "winningest" driver, Dave Palone took another historic step into uncharted territory Tuesday at The Meadows when he collected career victory 19,000. The milestone mile came with Southwind Warsaw in race 10. By way of comparison, Russell Baze, the all-time wins leader in Thoroughbred racing, notched 12,842 victories. Palone was met in the winners' circle by his mother, Jean; his wife, Bethann; his daughters Hanna, Alana and Sophie; his brother Mike Palone, a longtime Meadows-based trainer who, appropriately enough, was the conditioner of Southwind Warsaw; Kim Hankins, executive director of the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA), and other family, friends and fans. As the historic event neared, Palone indicated he could feel his emotions rising. "It really hasn't hit me yet," he said. "Everybody's been getting excited about it, and that's getting me kind of excited. It's been fun." Palone, who began driving in 1982, has achieved a career full of highlights that have rewritten the sport's record books. On July 5, 2012, he scored career win 15,181 to break Herve Filion's longstanding North American record -- and was greeted in the winners' circle by the gracious Filion. On Nov. 14, 2014, he became the "winningest" driver on the planet when career victory 16,754 vaulted him past Germany's Heinz Wewering, who sent a pre-recorded congratulatory message. He was inducted into the Harness Hall of Fame on July 4, 2010. If he wraps up the 2019 driving title at The Meadows -- he's comfortably ahead -- it will be his 30th consecutive season as the track's top dog. At 57, Palone has begun to cut back some. Of his more than 73,000 career starts, 2,827 came in 2008, his most prolific season. (That year also marked his highest single-season UDR, .446). In 2019, he's logged 1,614 starts as of mid-November. "I don't envy those guys who bounce around two tracks every day," he says. "I'm enjoying things a lot more not driving full cards. It's more important for me right now to be at my kids' events. There comes a time when you have to decide which way you want to go. When you get to my point in life, family is more important." Earlier in his career, Palone dabbled in training; he has 34 wins in 100 training starts, but his most recent start as a trainer occurred in 2000. He doesn't see himself transitioning to full-time training but can envision a day where he's involved. "At some point, I'd like to help a trainer by working with babies. Trainers work way too hard for me. They're working with their horses seven days a week; I'm putting in two minutes. For all the work trainers are putting in, they deserve my best effort." For now, he plans to enjoy following the career of Hanna, who works as a caretaker for Ron Burke -- "it's special seeing her passion for horses" -- and drive for as long as he can. "I keep driving, I show up for work every day, and I'm grateful for the opportunity. I enjoy racing horses as much as I ever did and want to keep at it, but Father Time is undefeated." Make it 17 wins this year for Touchamatic Touchamatic collected her 17th win this year when she outkicked Camera Lady and captured Tuesday’s $20,000 Filly & Mare Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Touchamatic stalked Camera Lady from the pocket, and when Aaron Merriman angled her outside for the drive, she was the stronger mare, downing Camera Lady by a neck in 1:52.3. Dark Force finished third. Bill Bercury trains Touchamatic, a 5-year-old daughter of American Ideal-Perfect Touch who now boasts $417,622 in career earnings, for Renee Bercury. It was one of three wins for Merriman on the 13-race card. Dave Palone also enjoyed a triple, including career win 19,000. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday, when the program features a $44,179.75 carryover in the final-race Super Hi 5 as well as a $912.18 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). First post for the 12-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association                  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 18, 2019 -- Dave Palone drove a single winner Monday at The Meadows to lift his career total to 18,998. He'll have plenty of chances to reach the 19,000 milestone Tuesday, with 12 assignments scheduled on the 13-race card. Meanwhile, the jackpot for the Super Hi-5 grew to $40,921.13. The wager is offered on the final race of each live card. Tuesday's program also features a $5,000 total-pool guarantee in the Pick 4 (races 3-6). Nearly lost in the excitement over Palone's quest and the Super Hi-5 was the big day achieved by Jim Pantaleano, who collected five wins on the program. In Monday's feature, a $20,000 Open Handicap Trot, Final Breath attacked the leader, Donatover, down the backside and passed him into the final turn, downing him by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:53.4. Early leader Supergirl Riley finished third. Tony Hall piloted Final Breath, a 9-year-old Victory Sam-First Breath gelding who now boasts $569,098 in career earnings, for trainer Norm Parker and owner Duane Lowe. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 17, 2019 -- Dave Palone, harness racing's "winningest" driver, is approaching another historic milestone as the race week begins at The Meadows. With 18,997 career victories, he needs three wins to reach 19,000 -- heady territory, indeed. By way of comparison, Russell Baze, the all-time wins leader in Thoroughbred racing, notched 12,842 victories. Palone is scheduled for nine drives on the 13-race card, which begins at 1:05 PM. Palone, 57, began driving in 1982 and has amassed a number of unique accomplishments. Among his career highlights: He was inducted into the Harness Hall of Fame on July 4, 2010. On July 5, 2012, he scored career win 15,181 to break Herve Filion's longstanding North American record. On Nov. 14, 2014, he became the "winningest" driver on the planet when career victory 16,754 vaulted him past Germany's Heinz Wewering. If he wraps up the 2019 driving title at The Meadows -- he's comfortably ahead -- it will be his 30th consecutive season as the track's top dog. Along the way, Palone has earned more than $144 million in purses. Meanwhile, Monday's program also will provide plenty of excitement on the wagering front, as the jackpot in the final-race Super Hi-5 has grown to $37,849.43. For the Super Hi-5, which is offered with every live card, the jackpot is paid only if there is a sole correct ticket. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 15, 2019 -- When You Dance relentlessly wore down the harness racing leader, Bettor Than Spring, and edged him at the wire to pull off an 11-1 upset in Friday's $18,000 Open Handicap Pace at The Meadows. When You Dance was fourth down the backside when Jim Pantaleano sent him first over. When You Dance and Bettor Than Spring dueled through the stretch before When You Dance surged late to score the head victory in 1:52.2. Real Peace shot the Lightning Lane for show. Christen Pantaleano owns and trains the winner, a 4-year-old Mach Three-Armbro Dancer gelding who pushed his career bankroll to $172,047. Dave Palone collected four wins on the 13-race card while Jim Pantaleano, Mike Wilder and trainer Ron Burke each enjoyed a triple. With his haul, Palone lifted his career victory total to 18,997. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday when the program features a $37,849.43 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 13, 2019 -- An Original Dragon stalked the leader from the pocket, then blew by in the Lightning Lane to snare her second straight harness racing victory in Wednesday's feature at The Meadows, a $12,400 Filly & Mare Conditioned Pace. An Original Dragon grabbed the early lead but released Sweet Rockin Gia at the quarter, waiting patiently for her shot. Tony Hall gave it to her in the Lightning Lane, where she poured through to down Sweet Rockin Gia by a head in 1:55.3. E Dee's Well Said finished third. Andy Rickert owns and trains the winner, a 4-year-old daughter of Dragon Again-An Original. It was one of three wins for Hall on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday, when the program features a $34,612.67 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association                                

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 12, 2019 -- Hammered down to 1-9 in the wagering, Blue Ivy was as powerful as the odds suggested, pouring through the sloppy Lightning Lane to capture her third straight in Tuesday's fharness racing eature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Filly & Mare Conditioned Pace. Blue Ivy was content to stalk Sandy Win from the pocket. But when Aaron Merriman pointed her to the Lightning Lane, she blew past the leader and defeated her by a widening 2-1/4 lengths in 1:54.3. Art Of Norma rallied for show. Bill Bercury trains Blue Ivy, a 3-year-old daughter of Captaintreacherous-All Blue who now boasts $179,085 in career earnings, for Renee Bercury. Merriman piloted four winners on the 13-race card while Brady Brown fashioned a triple. Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday, when the program features a $31,771.56 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5 as well as an $877.02 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association    

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 11, 2019 -- Barn Girl rolled to her 11th harness racing win this year -- and 24th over the past two seasons -- with a front-end victory in Monday's $20,000 Open 1 Handicap Trot at The Meadows. The only mare in the field -- as she often is -- Barn Girl forged three wide to the lead for Aaron Merriman and blunted the backside bid of Whats The Word. The 7-year-old daughter of Cash Hall Turquoise Sweetie held off the Lightning Lane charge of Pass The Vape by a head to score in 1:54.2. Donatover, parked the entire mile, was a game third. Bill Bercury trains Barn Girl, who extended her lifetime bankroll to $858,878, for Renee Bercury. Tony Hall collected four wins and Dave Palone three on the 13-race program. Live racing at The Meadows continues Tuesday when the card features a $29,563.70 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5.. First post is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 8, 2019 -- Windsong Leo continued his domination of The Meadows elite harness racing pacers with a front-end victory -- his second in a row and 12th this year -- in Friday's $18,000 Open Handicap Pace. Windsong Leo sprang to the lead from post 6 for Dave Palone. Despite a demanding 26.3 opening quarter, the 7-year-old Jereme's Jet-Windsong Goldie gelding had little trouble scoring in 1:50.1, 1-1/2 lengths ahead of than Bettor Than Spring. K Ryan Bluechiip completed the ticket. Ron Burke train's Windsong Leo, who triumphed for the 32nd time over the past two seasons and lifted his career bankroll to $549,860, for Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Phillip Collura. Trainer Ron Burke fashioned a five-bagger on the 13-race card while Mike Wilder and Palone each piloted four winners. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday, when the program offers a trio of rich wagering opportunities: a $27,532.80 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5; a $5,000 total-pool guarantee in the Pick 4 (races 3-6); a $767.78 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). The Veterans Day card also features a tribute to America's servicemen and servicewomen highlighted by a match race pitting veterans of the U.S. Army, the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Coast Guard. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 7, 2019 -- When it's Army vs. Navy in football, it's a spectacle. Monday at The Meadows will be as spectacular as it will feature Army vs. Navy vs. Air Force vs. Coast Guard in a special match race that will highlight the Veterans Day tribute and celebration presented by the track and the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA). Veterans of those four military branches, each paired with a Meadows driver, will compete in the match race. Actually, the Army will have two representatives in the five-veteran field. Participants, along with their ranks when active, are: Sue Bales, Sergeant, U.S. Army; Suzanne Hicks, Specialist (E-4), U.S. Army; Brian Judy, Petty Officer First Class, U.S. Navy; Michael Lutz, Tactical Aircraft Maintenance Specialist, U.S. Air Force; David Polofcha, Petty Officer Second Class (E-5), U.S. Coast Guard. As part of the tribute, The Meadows will offer a complimentary buffet lunch in the Carvery restaurant to active military and veterans while the MSOA will provide them with free t-shirts, programs and wagering vouchers. Veterans and active military also may enjoy paddock tours and starting gate rides courtesy the MSOA. First post for Monday's live card is 1:05 PM, with the time of the match race to be determined. The jackpot for the Super Hi-5 at The Meadows has jumped again. The carryover for Friday's Super Hi-5 is $24,811.20. The wager is offered on the final race of each live card. First post for Friday's 13-race program is 1:05 PM. For more information or to register for any of the day's events or giveaways, please contact the MSOA's Dawnelle Mock, 724.470.8303, dawnellemock@gmail.com -- and be sure to visit the MSOA table in the Racebook on Nov. 11. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 6, 2019 -- Casey T pulled off a 7-1 upset when she used the Lightning Lane to outkick Kenziesky Hanover and capture Wednesday's harness racing feature at The Meadows, an $11,500 Filly & Mare Conditioned Trot. Casey T and Dan Rawlings grabbed the early lead but released Kenziesky Hanover to take advantage of the pocket trip. Casey T was strongest in the lane, downing the rallying Rose Run Reanna by 1/2 length in a career-best 1:55.4. Kenziesky Hanover saved show. Tyler Stillings trains Casey T, a 6-year-old daughter of Madison River-Gia who boosted her career bankroll to $157,629, for Rags To Riches Of PA. Stillings and Rags To Riches teamed for three victories on the 13-race card while Stillings added to his big day with a driving win. In Wednesday's subfeature, an $11,200 Filly & Mare Conditioned Pace, Blue Ivy turned in a sparkling performance for owner Renee Bercury and trainer Bill Bercury, winning in a swift 1:51.3. Blue Ivy was hammered down to 1-9 in the wagering and responded with a 7-1/4-length victory. Aaron Merriman piloted the 3-year-old filly, who now boasts $172,335 in lifetime earnings. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday when the program features a $24,811.20 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 1:05 PM.   By Evan Pattak for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 4, 2019 -- Brian Zendt collected harness racing career win #3,000 when he drove Saratoga Gia to victory in Monday's ninth race at The Meadows. "It's a good accomplishment for me because I don't drive every race," he said. "It seems a long time since I got 2,000." He took the first step towards his next milestone by bringing Cupcake Boss home -- at 23-1 -- in race 11. Zendt, 43, who began driving in 1995, also has 249 career training wins. He currently operates a stable typically numbering three to five head but can see a day when he expands. "I like to drive now, but I'd be lying if I said I like to drive all winter," he said. "Right now, the kids are into barrel racing and school stuff, but when they're older, it might be fun to take them to Florida in the winters." Zendt is part of a storied harness racing family. His dad, Bill, has been a leading trainer at The Meadows for decades and remains active and successful. Bill's late father, Wilbur, was a prominent trainer/driver. Brian's brother, Phillip, is a trainer based at The Meadows, and their sister, Bethann, is a longtime Standardbred owner and the wife of Dave Palone, harness racing's "winningest" driver all time. For all that, there was a time when he pondered a different career. "I attended Slippery Rock University majoring in finance; I thought education would be a good back-up for me," he said. "I had another year to go, but it was too much fun coming here and driving horses like Prescott Hanover on weekends. I thought that was pretty cool. I wish I would have finished school, but it's no big deal now. I have a lot of friends who got their degrees and had trouble finding jobs." Among his favorite horses are a handful he's driven for his father and the late trainer Walter "Boots" Dunn and Dunn Stable: Cam Mikey, whom he piloted to a third-place finish in the final of the 2014 Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids; the ill-fated Hidden Viggorish, a multiple track record holder at The Meadows who died as a result of foaling complications; the top trotter Sir Caviar, a win machine at The Meadows; Always Cam, who won the 2004 Breeders Crown Mare Pace with David Miller in the sulky. Perhaps his most memorable trip came Feb. 3, 2016 at The Meadows with Dunn Stable's fast-class trotter Trustworthy Kid. Zendt piloted the homebred to an improbable victory -- just hours after Dunn's death. "That was pretty special," he said. "He won against all odds, coming five wide and just swooping everybody. You could hear a pin drop after that race." OPEN TROT TO WHATS THE WORD Whats The Word roared from the pocket past the three-quarters and overpowered the leader, Donatover, en route to victory in Monday’s $18,000 Open 1 Handicap Trot at The Meadows. Sensing that Donatover was vulnerable after a demanding opening quarter, Jim Pantaleano moved the winner from the pocket early. Whats The Word responded by scoring in 1:54.1, 3/4 lengths better than Pass The Vape. Donatover saved show. Scott Betts trains Whats The Word, a 4-year-old son of Donato Hanover-Your Word Is Good who extended his career bankroll to $318,307, for Timothy Betts, Nicholas Catalano, Stephen Moss and Keith Pippi. Dave Palone and Pantaleano each piloted three winners on the 13-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Tuesday when the program features a $20,573.33 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5.. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 2, 2019 -- "It's been enjoyable; a new direction coming up for yours truly. Thank you so very much. Adios from The Meadows." With those words, Roger Huston brought down the curtain on his 44 harness racing years as "The Voice" of The Meadows. He's called more than 188,000 races in his career, but at 77, he's cutting back. He'll continue to call the Little Brown Jug, which he's done since 1968, and he'll announce at a number of county fairs. Huston has accepted a position as ambassador for the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association. In a ceremony before the races, speakers from The Meadows Racetrack & Casino and the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA) cited Huston's passion for harness racing, a trait that made him a uniquely effective ambassador and champion for the sport. "One of the things you've always said is 'Be There!'" said Tony Frabbiele, vice president and general manager of The Meadows. "You've always been there for us. On behalf of all the employees at The Meadows, thank you for being there." Kim Hankins, MSOA executive director, thanked Huston for becoming a member of the horsemen's family and presented him with a plaque. It was Kevin Brogan, vice president of marketing for The Meadows, who perhaps best captured the Hall of Famer when he recalled the first time he heard a Roger Huston call -- when Brogan was breaking in as a dishwasher at a Meadows off-track facility. "I hear this guy, he's going nuts during the race," Brogan said. "It's Monday. It's January. There's six inches of snow outside. It's 22 degrees, and there are 14 people watching this race. But what I came to understand when Roger shared it with me is that this race might be someone's first and only win, and it really should be special to them." The Meadows presented Huston with a crystal vase. On the racing front, Windsong Leo made it look easy once more in the $20,000 Roger Huston Farewell Open Handicap Pace, jogging to a 2-1/2-length victory in 1:49.3 for Dave Palone, trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Phillip Collura. Bettor Than Spring and K Ryan Bluechip rounded out the ticket. The 7-year-old Jereme's Jet-Windsong Goldie won for the 31st time over the past two seasons and extended his career bankroll to $540,860. In an emotional moment, as he crossed the wire, Palone raised the lines looked up at the announcer's booth in apparent tribute to Huston. Jim Pantaleano collected three wins on the 12-race card. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Monday, when the program features a $16,660.61 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post for the 13-race card is 1:05 PM. 'by Evan Pattak, for the MSOA

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 1, 2019 -- Front-ending You're Majestic, the only mare in the harness racing field, repelled the first-over bid of Delcrest Holiday and went on to capture Friday's feature at The Meadows, a $13,500 Conditioned Trot. You're Majestic was hard pressed by Delcrest Holiday, but when trainer/driver Doug Snyder put her to her task, she responded by widening late and downing the game challenger by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:55.3. Lucky Matter finished third. Frank Poerio, Jr. campaigns You're Majestic, a 7-year-old daughter of Majestic Son-You're Adorable who lifted her career bankroll to $582,117. Dave Palone piloted four winners on the 12-race card. Live racing at The Meadows continues Saturday, when the program features a pair of rich wagering opportunities: a $15,025.63 carryover in the Super Hi-5 (race 12) and a $1,774.03 carryover in the Pick 5 (races 2-6). First post is 1:05 PM. The program will mark the final call at The Meadows for Roger Huston, who has been "The Voice" of the track for the last 44 years. He has accepted a position as ambassador for the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association and will continue calling the Little Brown Jug. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 1, 2019 -- An era will end Saturday when Roger Huston, "The Voice" of The Meadows for the last 44 years, calls his final harness racing card at the track (first post 1:05 PM). At 77, Huston is cutting back his workload. He'll still call the Little Brown Jug, which he's done since 1968, and he'll announce races at a number of county fairs. But his day-to-day presence will be reduced. And what a presence it has been. Not only has Huston called more than 188,000 races in his career, but he's also been an effective ambassador and champion for harness racing, attracting many new fans to the sport through his distinctive calls and enthusiasm. Fittingly, the Hall of Famer has accepted a position as ambassador for the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association, returning to his Ohio roots. He seldom refuses an assignment, calling races throughout North America and journeying to Dublin each year to announce Ireland's premier event, the Vincent Delaney Memorial. But a race needn't be high profile to lure him; he once called a homespun Pittsburgh affair known as "The Undie 500," which featured humans, possibly inebriated, racing in their skivvies. That one may not make his career highlights list, but all who heard his call remember it. Huston is prolific to be sure, yet he also brings to his work a Cosellian quality, rare among announcers, that infuses even the most humble event with importance. When he calls a race, it's historic -- and we're thrilled to become part of that history. Now, on the eve of his final call at The Meadows, horsemen are offering tributes and remembrances. Some are veteran Ohio and western Pennsylvania horsemen. Others are winners of the Jug or the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids. A few are both. If you've never been on your feet, you better get up now to join these horsemen in thanking Roger Huston and celebrating his career. * * * * * "We're not just losing a man; we're losing an icon He's the SportsCenter, the Chris Berman of harness racing. His knowledge and dedication to something that he loves are unsurpassed. I've always looked forward to Roger's announcing every day, to his thunder and his fire. The statistics he compiles are instrumental to the game. With today's technology, I hope there's a group that will keep that going." -- Aaron Merriman, four-time national driving champion who's co-located at The Meadows and Ohio tracks * * * * * "He's the reason my dad took me to the races for the 1976 Adios. I had no background in horses, no interest in horses, but when I heard Roger calling the stretch duel between Armbro Ranger and Keystone Ore, I was hooked. I thought, I'd like for that guy to scream my name. He's been my No. 1 supporter, even introducing me at my Hall of Fame induction. When I won the Jug with P-Forty Seven (2005), he was the happiest guy in the winners' circle -- tears running down his face, big hug. That meant a lot. It will be weird driving races and not hearing him." -- Dave Palone, harness racing's all-time "winningest" driver * * * * * "When I was 17, I skipped school to go to the Jug. I had no pass, no parking -- the Jug barn wasn't even built then. So I'm walking up the road, and I hear Roger holler, 'They're going to the gate.' It made my hair stand on end. He makes the whole experience more special. In 2017, I had three horses at The Meadows for Emerald Highlands Farm on Adios Day. We won the Adios with Fear The Dragon, we won an Adioo Volo division, and we won an Arden Downs split. Roger couldn't let that go: 'Three in a row at The Meadows!' That put the cherry on top." -- Brian Brown, Delaware, Ohio-based trainer * * * * * "I've known Roger just about my whole life. I remember first meeting him when I was 8 at the Ashland County Fair and later hearing him call the Jug. He really loves harness racing; you can tell by the way he calls the races. Things won't be the same without him. After I won my first Jug with No Pan Intended (2003), I told Roger, 'I'm glad it was you who called my first Jug win.'" -- Hall of Famer David Miller, five-time Jug winner and former member of The Meadows drivers colony. * * * * * "Roger is Meadows racing as far as I'm concerned, and I'm lucky enough to call him my friend. It's truly a loss for The Meadows. At the same time, I'm happy for him taking on his new role in Ohio. He's had a tremendous impact on the sport and on me personally. When I watch replays and hear him screaming my name, it makes my job fun." -- Mike Wilder, Ohio native and longtime driver at The Meadows * * * * * "On behalf of all our horsemen, I want to thank Roger. He's been harness racing's No. 1 fan, and we really appreciate all his hard work in promoting racing. He's in the Hall of Fame for a reason." -- Kim Hankins, executive director, Meadows Standardbred Owners Association * * * * * "I'm from Ohio, and my first harness racing experience was listening to Roger's calls at the Jug. That was the most exciting thing. We moved to western Pennsylvania even before Roger arrived at The Meadows; I remember having dinner at his house when we were kids. It was great to have an announcer of his stature at The Meadows; just his being here brought us publicity. That's been important for all our careers. What he's brought to our sport is unfathomable." -- Norm Parker, The Meadows-based trainer * * * * * "I've actually been thinking quite a bit about his departure. I'm trying to appreciate hearing him now, because when he's gone, people will really miss him. My father grew up in Pittsburgh and, I assume, went to The Meadows in the '70s. Roger was the announcer then, so to me, he connects my generation to my dad's generation. Something feels good about that, knowing I'm listening to the same announcer. I don't know what it will be like here when he's gone, but it certainly will be different. Roger is as much a part of The Meadows as anyone or anything ever." -- Mark Weaver of Weaver Bruscemi LLC, who treasures Huston's calls of his two Jug wins (Limelight Beach in 2014, Filibuster Hanover in 2017) and his 2018 Adios title with Dorsoduro Hanover. Super Hi-5 Jackpot at $15,025.63 The jackpot for the final-race Super Hi-5 at The Meadows has grown again. Friday's Super Hi-5 offers a carryover of $15,025.63. First post for the 12-race card is 1:05 PM. By Evan Pattak, for The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association

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