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East Rutherford, NJ - The Saturday night harness racing feature at The Meadowlands is the seventh race, a conditioned pace for a purse of $15,000. The field consists of eight veterans, including the coupled entry of City Hall and Iwillmakeyousaywow who are both owned in part by Gene Oldford and trained by Amber and Todd Buter respectively. Both horses relish the mile track and have enjoyed their best successes here at The Meadowlands.   The competition is diverse with familiar faces like the $1.95 million winner Bettor's Edge (Vic Kirby) who needs no introduction, the well-traveled Calvin B (Jon Roberts) also seems to do his best work over the mile, Saratoga shipper Titus Seelster (Eric Abbatiello) who's been having his way with the top class at The Spa and the former "King of Maine" Seely Man (Christian Lind), undefeated in the "Pine Tree" state at two and three but still looking for his first win elsewhere getting significant class relief on Saturday.   There is certain to be a considerable pari-mutuel reward for the punter that solves that puzzle.   Return of Brett Pelling   An interesting aside to Saturday's races is that Brett Pelling is listed as trainer on Roll N Catch in the third race. The seven-time Meadowlands trainer of the year and the track's all time leading money winner when he left town was last seen in these parts back on December 30, 2005.   Off the track   The attractions are many, led by a 30 & Under free handicapping challenge, $10,000 in college scholarship giveaways and the Summer Wine Festival on what is being billed as Millennial Night at the races.   Post time is 7:15 p.m. Nick Salvi

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Barn Bella returns to Buffalo Raceway on Sunday afternoon (June 25) in the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old filly trotters and she'll be seeking redemption at the half-mile harness racing oval.   Last year's 2-year-old Sire Stakes champion, Barn Bella broke stride turning for home at Buffalo Raceway and finished out of the money. a rare occurrence in her brief 15-race career. But it's been more feast than famine for Barn Bella as she has won 12 times. In her other three attempts, she has been totally off the board.   "This will be her toughest race of the year on Sunday with the tight turns," Barn Bella's co-owner and trainer Steven Pratt of Corfu, N.Y. said. "Buffalo Raceway is my home track and I support them. I've adjusted a few things on her for a half mile track and don't anticipate any problems come Sunday."   Drawing the four hole, Barn Bella (Conway Hall-Bravissima) is tabbed as the heavy 3-to-5 morning line pick in the first division worth $58,000. Jeff Gregory, a native of nearby Churchville, N.Y., will handle the driving duties. It is scheduled as the fifth on the 10-race card that begins at 12:30 p.m.   Barn Bella, a winner of $350,005 lifetime, arrives on a 10-race win streak including a 1:51.3 mile victory in the $228,250 Empire Breeders Classic at Vernon Downs last week. That mark tied the track record set by Check Me Out.   "She had a brutal race last week at Vernon," Pratt said. "She got parked in 26.1 to the first quarter but still trotted home in 27.0. I would say 99 percent of other horses couldn't have done that."   The bad news for others is the fact Pratt believes she'll only get better. "She's just a monster. She's as game as any that I've had including Barn Doll. There's no bottom on her. (Drivers) Jeff Gregory and Jimmy Taggart Jr. each said after Barn Bella's last races that 'there is still plenty left in the tank.'"   With the impressive credentials thus far, Pratt said he along with co-owners Nancy Pratt and The Purple Haze Stables have been offered 'big money' for Barn Bella but there's currently a 'not for sale' sign on her.   "I am content with her and I am enjoying this. She's so easy going, quiet and relaxed." He added, "Barn Bella doesn't train, she just jogs. She knows what to do when she gets behind that starting gate though. It's all business with her."   Pratt stated that Barn Bella will stay on the New York Sire Stakes circuit for the rest of the year but they might supplement her in the Breeder's Crown in October. "That's a pretty big nut to supplement her into that but I truly believe she's one of the top three filly trotters in the country."   The rest of the field trying to spoil the homecoming of Barn Bella includes Maewegonow (Charlie Norris), Mamora Bay (Sam Schillaci), Reverend Nanny (John Cummings Jr.) and Mighty Surf (Jim Morrill Jr.).   The second division, slated as the seventh race, will carry a purse of $59,100. It appears to be a wide-open event with Amber Ella (Jason Bartlett) getting the slight nod off the rail at 2-to-1.   Amber Ella (Chapter Seven-Blushed) finished a distant fourth behind Barn Bella in the Empire Breeder's Classic last week at Vernon Downs. She did win four races in eight tries in 2016, piling up $139,193 in earnings. Amber Ella has yet to find the winner's circle in three chances this year, but does have a pair of second place finishes.   Billie Blue (Conway Hall-Lightfoot) starts from the six spot and is a 3-to-1 pick on the morning line with driver Chris Lems. She's won twice in five appearances thus far in 2017 including a 1:55.4 effort last week at Vernon Downs.   Others ready to do battle in the leg are Deli-Delite (Drew Monti), Scarey Karie (Phil Fleut), Chapter Too (Jeff Gregory) and Heels On Wheels (Morrill Jr.).   The card will also have a pair of $15,000 Excelsior A Series races and a $6,600 Excelsior B Series contest.   For more information including the latest news, race replays, results and upcoming promotions, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

The first crop from the talented A Rocknroll Dance are hitting the track in full force. This month, his 2-year-olds got off to a strong start, hitting the baby races like harness racing seasoned pros.   Many of them show the promise and potential of their sire, even in their first starts.     Here are a couple of names to keep an eye on:   Cuts Like A Knife, filly out of Whetstone Hanover who won her qualifier at Harrah's in 1:55.2.   Yankee Will Dance, a filly out of Bootleg Yankee, a baby race winner and was a strong 2nd in her 1st lifetime start in 1:53.4.   Grand Teton, the half brother to Pure Country, who won his qualifier the other day.   Aldine Hanover, filly out of Armbro Amoretto, another strong qualifier winner.   Davids Coming Home, colt out of Arterra who has put on consistent performances in his baby races this month. ................................................................................ Diamond Creek Farm threw its third annual open house on June 3, at their Wellsville, Pa., location.  “The Open House is a way for us to welcome the community and all the fans to our farm,” said Diamond Creek’s Adam Bowden. “Many people never get a chance to see what happens behind the scenes at a breeding farm, or they are curious about what goes on here when they see all the fences and barns from the road.” The day was a huge success with well over 400 attendees, largely from the community, and with some visitors from as far as North Carolina.  Visitors were able to get up close and personal to stallions such as Southwind Frank, as well as watch two different breeding demonstrations, in which Always B Mike and Sweet Lou were artificially collected. They were then welcomed into the lab, as the farm’s resident vet, Dr. Courtney Pink, processed the semen and answered questions from the group. Down in the mare barn, visitors were welcome to walk around on their own or take a hayride tour around the farm. They had a chance to submit names for a new foal, as well as pet a few, and feed some carrots to some very willing mares. The “guess the weight” game proved to be popular, with guesses to win a t-shirt ranging from 100 pounds to 700. In the end, the colt weighed 500 pounds on the dot. Guests also got to meet Sweet Karen, the Harness Horse Youth Foundation’s outreach ambassador, and learn more about the program from director Ellen Taylor and her group of volunteers, as well as spin their wheel to answer some harness related questions for some of the new 2017 HHYF Harness Hero cards. Pacing For The Cure, represented by the founders, Jeff and Janine Gesek, were present as well, speaking about their work for MS research and raffling off some really great baskets, as well as a trip to the 2017 Hambletonian. With great weather, the farm served close to 600 hamburgers and hot dogs, and Bootleg Creamery gave out more than 400 bowls of ice cream. “We look forward to doing this event every year,” said Rachel Keeney, Diamond Creek’s Administrator Director. “We are already planning on how to make it bigger and better in 2018.” Meet The Staff Working on a breeding farm isn’t all just horses and barn work.  It takes a lot of different people, doing a variety of different tasks to make everything run smoothly.  One of the very important people in this puzzle is Jake Ziegler, our maintenance manager of 3 years.  Jake helps keep the farm in good shape.  He handles everything from snow removal and landscaping, to vehicle repair, to even large building projects on the farm, such as remodeling the breeding shed to redoing the office front porch.  (Jake built the porch of the old farm house, which was built in 1807, as well as repointed and restored the outside of the building)  Jake is local to Pennsylvania, growing up close to the farm in nearby Carlisle.   He first got involved with Diamond Creek in the summer of 2012, when he helped to tear down all the old barns to make way for the new ones.  Jake’s favorite part of the job is the diversity, there is no such thing as a typical day.  He hopes the younger generation gets more involved and keeps growing the sport, as it is a fun and exciting industry to be part of.   (Wishing well built to cover old well, stone is from the original barns and wood is old fence boards) If Jake could time travel he would end back in his hometown of Carlisle, 100 years ago.  The weirdest job he ever had was spent catching pigeons, and he has a secret talent for trivia games.  Included on his bucket list is skydiving and not included is eating squid.   Jake has 2 dogs, Remey and Axel, and some cows on his farm in Carlisle.  And the one thing he can’t live without? His wife, Jen. Shuttle Stallion Series As many already know, Sweet Lou, A Rocknroll Dance, and Always B Miki are getting ready to pack up their bags and head Down Under!    Ever wondered what exactly goes into the making of a "shuttle stallion"? What is life like for them on the farms Down Under?   The next few editions of this newsletter will try and answer some of these questions, pulling in information from some of the many people involved in the entire process, from deciding to send a stallion, to all the paperwork, to life Down Under.    Stay tuned!   Diamond Creek Farm 151 Warrington Street, Wellsville PA 17365 Phone: 717-638-7100 | Fax: 717-638-7111 email: diamondcreek2@gmail.com  

Plainville, MA---It's the same old story, but one his connections won't soon tire of. Mambo Lindy spotted the field seven lengths before roaring back to notch another harness racing victory at Plainridge Park as he won the $17,000 Open Handicap on Thursday (June 22). Mambo Lindy (Greg Merton) got away last in the field of seven as Mistress Valentine (Mark Eaton) rolled down the road in :27 and :55.2 with her followers strung out behind. At that station, Tag Up And Go (Chris Long) pulled first-over and Mambo Lindy followed in step. Halfway up the backstretch Mistress Valentine got foul-gaited and broke stride, leaving the pocket-sitting Guiltywithanexcuse (Jim Hardy) with the lead. Outside of him, the tiring Tag Up And Go had enough forcing Mambo Lindy to tip three-deep. When Merton made that move, Mambo Lindy was flying and took that momentum down the stretch. As Merton had already tucked the whip, Mambo Lindy cleared and drew off by three to the easiest kind of win in 1:53.3. It was the fourth straight feature trot win for Mambo Lindy ($3.40) at Plainridge Park and it expanded his bank account for the year to $32,000. The 6-year-old gelded son of Donato Hanover is owned by Greathorse of Hampden, Massachusetts and is trained by Frank Antonacci. Mambo Lindy is eligible to the $250,000 Spirit of Massachusetts Trot at Plainridge Park on Friday (July 28) and would certainly have the home field advantage in that race as a starter. Mambo Lindy was only one highlight of Merton and Antonacci's day as both horsemen put up lofty numbers on the afternoon. Greg Merton posted another six-win day, extending his dash driving lead over Kevin Switzer to 31. Merton finished first with Only Passing Thru ($2.40, 1:55.4), World Of Lindy ($4.60, 2:00), Mambo Lindy ($3.40, 1:53.3), Northern Nandi ($9.40, 1:58.1), City Pie ($3.40, 1:53.2) and Waiting On A Woman ($4.60, 1:56). His 1:55.4 win with Only Passing Thru in the second race tied the track record for 3-year-old trotting colts set by Backstage Pass (Eddie Davis Jr.) on May 4 of this year. Merton now boasts a gaudy 86 wins for this meet, 31 ahead of his 2016 total to this point when he won a track record 229 times. If he were to keep up this pace he would end up with 314 wins at this session. Frank Antonacci started three of his Lindy Farm trainees (Only Passing Thru, World Of Lindy and Mambo Lindy) and watched as all of them bested their fields. Antonacci now has 18 training wins out of 26 starts this meet, giving him a 65% win percentage. Other horsemen with notable performances were Chris Long with a driving double and Kyle Spagnola that had a training pair of wins. Live racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (June 23) at 4 p.m. The Wicked Hi-5 pentafecta carryover for Friday is $2,265.42 and that wager is available only in the sixth race.   By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts  

It was only one start but for Francesco Laosa a chance to drive a pacer proved fruitful when the Sicilian professional harness racing finished second in the one race that he drove at Monticello Raceway on Thursday, June 22. According to his friend Marco Barone who doubled as his interpreter, the Italian speaking professional driver and his wife Carola are celebrating their honeymoon with a two week holiday in North America. And through some help from friends LaRosa made a connection with Monticello trainer Dan Gill who offered him a drive behind one of his pupils, Park it Park It, a 4-year-old altered son of Big Bad John. Sent off at odds of 8-1 from the three hole in race five LaRosa allowed John DeSimone and Eye Candy to take the lead and then was comfortable with a two-hole trip all the way. However, in the lane Park It Park It flattened out and couldn't gain on the pace-setter and finished second a length behind Eye Candy in the 1:57paced mile. Asked how it felt to drive a pacer LaRosa replied through his translator, Barone:" It was smooth and steady," and then added "the pacer was easier to handle than a trotter." A winner of a few hundred races in his homeland the opportunity to drive a pacer was special to the 30 year LaRosa since only trotters are raced in Italy, and for that matter all though continental Europe. LaRosa and his dad handle a considerable stable based in Palermo, Sicily. Their horses compete at racetracks in Palermo, Siracusa, Garigliano and Naples as well as various racetracks in southern Italy. After the Monticello race Francesco and Carola, along with Mario Barone and his son Rylee, were headed to the Big Apple . After a short stay in New York City the LaRosa's will be on to California and then to Cancun, Mexico before returning home to Sicily The Barones will leave NYC and head back to their home in the upper peninsula of Michigan. By John Manzi

On Thursday June 23, with the sun bright in the blue summer sky and the temperature hovering around 80-degrees, two amateur races dotted the 11-race harness racing card at Monticello Raceway and when the judges hung the official signs, Alan Schwartz emerged victorious in the NAADA trot with Ladys Big Stormont in a 1:58.4 clocking while Joe Lee was the first home in the Catskill Club pace with TKR's Metro Specs in 1:59.1 In his contest Schwartz hustled his trotter for the lead but they had to go a steppy :27.4 in order to rest command from Highest Hill and driver Rich Gayton. But once Ladys Big Stormont cleared and settled down along the pylons Schwartz tried to give his charge a breather but as they trotted to the halfway point Bob Hechkoff was out and moving with The Franchise and they ranged alongside the leader as the timer flashed :58.1. The two leaders raced head-to-head up the backside but Ladys Big Stormont was strong enough to rebuff his challenger. When the field headed for home Ladys Big Stormont opened up two lengths and he needed every bit of that to turn back a late charge by Hannah Miller with Rev It Now. "My horse went a tough mile especially being parked to the(first) quarter in 27:4 and then having to fight head to head with Hechkoff's horse," Schwartz said after the race. "We did draw clear as we headed for home but my guy was understandably tiring and all I could think of in the deep stretch was 'where the heck is the wire'" When the photo-finish camera snapped Ladys Big Stormont was a head better than Rev It Now . A short length farther back in third place was The Franchise. Schwartz owns the winner whose trained by Raheim Strong. Sent off as the even-money favorite Ladys Big Stormont paid $4.00 for win. Schwartz has been participating in amateur races since the 1980's and now has 585 driving victories to his credit. A long time participant at Monticello Raceway against professionals he also serves as president of the local horseman's organization. In the other amateur driving contest New York Yankees assistant locker room manager, Joe Lee once again proved he knows his was around the racetrack after scoring is eighth seasonal driving victory this time with the Woody Hoblitzell-owned TKRs Metro Specs. Sent off as the hot favorite from the pole position Lee naturally sent his pacer to the lead and once on top they commanded the race and kept Monica Banca's Fox Valley Leo, who won this event last week, on the limb. After a :28.3 first quarter Lee slowed the pace and his horse was steadfastly in charge as they led the field by the half in:59.2 and the three quarters in 1:29.2 As they rounded the final turn TKRs Metro Specs had a two length lead which was slowly diminishing as they headed for paydirt. Kennanskingwilliam was enjoying a two-hole trip and driver Gerry Fielding used the passing lane to put serious pressure on the leader. However, at the wire TKR Metro Specs held tough for a head triumph in the 1:59.1 mile. Third place went to Murphy's Ideal, driven by Dr. Jennifer Lowrey. "We had clear sailing all the way until the final strides when my pacer began to get a little leg-weary," driver Joe Lee noted "Although Fielding's horse was coming at us my horse was strong enough to get home with the victory. Trained by Bruce Aldrich, Sr., TKR's Metro Specs won for the third time this season and returned a $4.20 win mutuel. By John Manzi for both NAADA and the Catskill Club  

Five years ago when Dave Palone became the leading driver in career wins in North American harness racing history, he looked to the man he surpassed with respect and awe. “When I was a kid,” Palone said, “Herve was my idol. In soccer, there’s Pele. In harness racing, there’s Herve. When you say ‘Herve’ everyone knows who that is. “I don’t think I could ever replace Herve as the legend that he is.” Herve Filion, a Hall of Famer in the U.S. and Canada who retired in 2013 with 15,179 career wins, passed away Thursday at the age of 77. Filion, a native of Quebec, was North America’s leading driver in wins 16 times, earning his first title in 1968 and final crown in 1990. The Filion family at midday Thursday posted on Facebook: “God saw you getting tired and a cure not meant to be. So he put his arms around you and whispered ‘come to me.’ Our dad, Herve Filion, crossed the finish line like the champion he is and became our angel today. “A true champion he will always be – doctors have told us this is one for the books for sure! We appreciate all the well wishes and the memories that have been shared these past few weeks. We thank you for giving us our privacy during this heartbreaking time.” Filion first came to the U.S. in 1961. At 21 he was racing at Vernon Downs before migrating to the Delaware Valley circuit, where he rewrote the books at both Brandywine and Liberty Bell while also establishing himself as a power at Freehold. When Filion left to go to New York in 1970, he became a fulltime doubleheader driver, racing at Freehold in the afternoon and the metropolitan New York tracks at night. A teenage Palone watched in 1979 when Filion drove Hot Hitter to victory in the Adios at Palone’s hometown track, The Meadows in western Pennsylvania. When he was in his 20s, Palone got to meet his idol while participating in a driving competition at Freehold. “He was just like people always said he was, bubbly and positive,” Palone said today. “He treated me just like he treated all the other drivers and it meant a lot to me. He told me, ‘All you need is power, kid.’ That’s what he would always tell me. I’ll just always remember the way he treated me. He always had a smile on his face.” Filion’s roots in racing traced back to his childhood in Angers, Quebec, a remote farming community. “We had work horses and road horses because we didn’t have a car,” Filion once said. “In those days my father would do anything to make a buck, to raise 10 kids – eight boys and two girls. My father started racing as a hobby in 1949. I raced for the first time when I was 12, and finished second. At 13, I won my first race, with Guy Grattan, at Rigaud, Quebec.” Record numbers of wins followed. In 1968, Filion became the first driver to surpass 400 wins in a year, recording 407 victories en route to his first North American title. He continued to raise the bar from there, with 486 wins in 1970, then 543 in 1971, 605 in 1972 and 637 in 1974. When Mike Lachance broke Filion’s record with 770 wins in 1986, Filion reclaimed the mark with 798 triumphs in 1988. He pushed the record to 814 wins a year later. “He was one of the greatest drivers our sport has ever had,” Palone said. “No one was smoother with a horse. I think horses felt that and responded to him. He could keep a horse going forever.” Palone became the winningest driver in North American harness racing history on July 5, 2012 at The Meadows. Filion was in attendance. “Having him there meant so much to me,” Palone said. “He was so supportive and so encouraging when I was getting near the record. He kept telling me I was going to do it. I thought it was cool to have him in my corner. He hugged me when I broke the record and I could feel he was as happy for me as I was. “To this day it doesn’t seem right to me that I have the record. There’s only one Herve.” In addition to his years as the sport’s leading driver in wins, Filion topped the purse standings seven times. He finished his career with $88.4 million in earnings. Top horses driven by Filion included Grades Singing, who won the 1986 Maple Leaf Trot, American Trotting Championship and Breeders Crown Mare Trot with Filion in the sulky. Filion was a two-time winner of the Little Brown Jug, with Nansemond in 1971 and Hot Hitter in 1979, and enjoyed multiple stakes victories with millionaire Dorunrun Bluegrass. In addition to winning a Breeders Crown with Grades Singing, he won a trophy with Caressable in 1985. Filion, who won the inaugural World Driving Championship in 1970, was the youngest person ever elected to harness racing’s Living Hall of Fame, when he was inducted at the age of 35 in 1975. (John Campbell was also inducted at age 35 in 1990.) In 1976, Filion became the youngest driver inducted into Canada’s Horse Racing Hall of Fame. Other awards for Filion included the Lou Marsh trophy as Canada’s leading professional athlete; the Hickok Professional Athlete of the Month Award (the only individual in harness racing ever so honored); and the 1973 Proximity Award. “This is a sad day for harness racing,” Palone said. “There will never be another one like him.” Additional obituary information and information regarding services will be published when available. Ken Weingartner

East Rutherford, NJ - A field of seven pacing fillies including the darling of the morning trials Rainbow Room, comprise the first harness racing two-year-old race of the 2017 season as race three on Friday at The Meadowlands.   Rainbow Room has impressed onlookers and delighted her connections with a pair of effortless wins in Meadowlands Baby Races. Her first appearance was on June 3 where she toured the oval in the day's fastest of 1:55 and social media lit up with superlatives. She returned Saturday past with a similar effort, closing out the 1:55.2 win with a 26.4 final quarter under no encouragement from driver David Miller.   By Somebeachsomewhere from Rainbow Blue, both World Champions and Horse of the Year following their respective three-year-old season, Rainbow Room clearly possesses the championship gene. She was bred by Vieux Carre Farms and Steve Jones and was a $100,000 purchase from the 2016 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale by Crawford Farms, Val D'Or Farms and Ted Gewertz who placed her with trainer Joe Holloway.   Holloway has trained plenty of champions including some of the sport's best filly pacers including the fastest ever in Shebestingin. Joe recognized early on that Rainbow Room had the potential to follow in that tradition and now sets her on that course.   The competition includes several others who have impressed in morning trials including KJ'S Bekah who was a good second to Rainbow Room on June 17 and has gone well in both of her qualifiers. The American Ideal lass was plucked from the Lexington sale by Kenny Jacobs for $140,000 and is trained by Linda Toscano. Tim Tetrick has the drive.   All On Top Hanover is from the first crop of Betterthancheddar and has been an easy winner in her pair of qualifying efforts for trainer Erv Miller and driver Marcus Miller. She was a bargain buy from last year's Goshen Yearling Sale, costing Erv and partners Ron Michelon & GT Golemes a mere $14,000.   It's a ten race program that gets underway at 7:15 p.m.   Nick Salvi    

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (June 22, 2017) - The Meadowlands Racetrack will honor Hall of Famer John Campbell and celebrate his five-decade career with a series of events and tributes on Friday, June 30, the final night of his driving career. The 62-year-old is harness racing's most decorated and accomplished driver with career earnings just under $300 million. He has won a record six Hambletonians, seven Meadowlands Paces, and 48 Breeders Crowns. He was elected to the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 1990 at age 35, the youngest person ever to receive that honor. The celebration of Campbell's five decades in the sport will include a video tribute played throughout the evening and a series of interviews with some of Campbell's closest friends and competitors over the years that will be in attendance. There will also be an autograph signing with Campbell from 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m., a commemorative poster giveaway (while supplies last), and a series of contest giveaways featuring signed Campbell memorabilia. A special Campbell retirement cake will also be on display and fans in attendance can enjoy a piece of the cake beginning at 8:00 p.m. in the clubhouse lobby. "John Campbell is truly the Michael Jordan, Babe Ruth, and Wayne Gretzky of harness racing all wrapped up into one," said Meadowlands GM/COO Jason Settlemoir. "Nobody has revolutionized our sport or more importantly, been a better ambassador and promoter of our industry. We hope the night can be a fitting celebration of a true giant in our sport." Upon Campbell's official retirement from driving, he will compete in a pair of exhibition races, one at the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in Goshen, NY on July 2 and the other at Clinton Raceway in Ontario on July 30 where Campbell got his start as a driver. While Campbell will no longer compete on the track, he will still be involved with the sport. Beginning July 1, he will take over as president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Hambletonian Society, a not-for-profit organization which supports and encourages the breeding of Standardbred horses by sponsoring and administering stakes and other special events in harness racing. Fans are encouraged to RSVP to the event on the official Meadowlands Facebook page. Live racing begins at 7:15 p.m. For more information and complete schedule of events, visit www.playmeadowlands.com. Justin Horowitz

STICKNEY, IL - Beginning with the Thursday, June 22 harness racing card and moving forward, Hawthorne Race Course and the United States Trotting Association will be teaming up to offer guaranteed pools on the late pick 4 wager nightly at Hawthorne. Through the USTA Strategic Wagering Program, past performances for each guaranteed pool will be made available for free to handicappers. Players can find the past performances in the "Handicapping" section at www.Ustrotting.com. The late pick 4 at Hawthorne has a $.50 base minimum wager and a 15% takeout rate. The wager will cover the final four races on the Hawthorne card each night. The guaranteed pools will be $10,000 on Thursday evening, $15,000 on Friday and Saturday evening and $20,000 on Sunday evening. Additionally, for tonight's Hawthorne card, the pick 5, beginning with race one, has a $2,959 carryover and will have a $10,000 guaranteed pool. Jim Miller

The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono's Rainbow Pick 5 carryover is now at $31,281.89 going into the harness racing Sun Stakes Saturday eliminations night, June 24th. The wager is 20 cents, and is on races 10 through 14, which includes eliminations for the James Lynch Memorial; Max Hempt Memorial; Ben Franklin Free-For-All; and the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial Trot. Saturday's Post Time is 6:30PM. Sun Stakes Saturday, with $2 million in purses, is July 1st. Jennifer Starr Racing Marketing Manager Racing Operations

HARRINGTON, Del. - Ben Brooks' Master Clave ($2.40, Ross Wolfenden) continued his dominance among the Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund 3-year-old colts and geldings division with a 1:59 triumph Wednesday in one four $20,000 harness racing eliminations at Harrington Raceway. The Master Lavec gelding surged by Moonshine Lavec in the final strides for his 10th career win for trainer John Wilkerson. Command The Fire was third. Stephen Moss and Harold and Helane Solomon's Luv Is Blind ($5.80, Victor Kirby) prevailed in the first filly division with a 1:59.2 win, a new lifetime best. A Chorus Line was second with Spoonful third. Luv Is Blind is sired by Keystone Activator and trained by her driver. The win was part of another successful night for Kirby, who had five wins on the program. He also won five races on Monday and had three wins Tuesday. Don Marine's Political Energy ($2.60, Kirby) completed a sweep of her eliminations for trainer William Wyatt with a 2:02.1 win over Irish Blessings and Willow Mill Anna. A daughter of Political Briefing, "Energy" has now won two straight after being winless in the first 16 starts of her career. The final division was won by heavy favorite Master Kingpin ($2.10, Art Stafford Jr.) in 2:02 for trainer /owner Thomas Lail over Yagot A Winner and No Left Turns. The Master Lavec gelding recorded his third career win. Two Harness Horse Youth Foundation exhibition races were held among the seven children who have been at Harrington Raceway since Sunday June 18 participating in an industry youth camp. Zoe Probert and Vince Copeland drove I Want Another to victory in the first exhibition while Pokie's Topshot won the second with Sundene Lodge and Art Stafford Jr. For more information on HHYF, visit www.hhyf.org. Matthew Sparacino

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Obvious Blue Chip and Clear Idea took advantage of the long home stretch at Buffalo Raceway on Wednesday night (June 21) and rallied with impressive harness racing victories in the New York Sire Stakes for the 3-year-old filly pacers.   The quickest time of the two divisions each worth over $60,000 went to Obvious Blue Chip who covered the mile in 1:54.4 while Clear Idea won her leg with a 1:55.1. Both were well short of the Buffalo Raceway standard of 1:53.3 established in 2015 by Mosquito Blue Chip.   It took a great charge in the stretch by Clear Idea (Mark MacDonald) to help post the $12.80 surprise.   Planet Rock (Scott Zeron) set the fractions of 28.0, 56.4 and 1:26.0 and appeared home free turning for the finish line. Trailing by 3-1/4 lengths, Clear Idea (American Ideal-Glass Maker) uncorked a 28.4 final panel to register the come from behind victory. Planet Rock held on for second with Ann Hill (Larry Stalbaum) taking the show spot.   MacDonald said, "Clear Idea was real sharp. After awaiting the confusion to clear on the final turn, I pulled her out and she dug in to get the win."   Co-owned by trainer Blake MacIntosh and the Hutt Racing Stable, Clear Idea has been in the money in all 10 of her starts this season. With her fourth win of the campaign, Clear Idea has now won $87,759 in 2017 and $102,709 lifetime.   Obvious Blue Chip (Jason Bartlett) didn't need as big of rally to get the job done but hit the finish line in impressive fashion.   Sitting fourth with a quarter mile to pace, Obvious Blue Chip ($2.70) tipped three-wide and buried the field in the lane, winning by three lengths. The pace-setting Studio One (Kevin Cummings) took second and Word Apart (Zeron) finished third.   Bartlett stated of the winning journey, "I let them (Studio One and Artrageous) carry us through the first half mile and once we got through the first turn on the second circuit, I cut her loose down the back stretch. She's a nice filly, really sharp."   Co-owned by the NLG Racing Stable and Stephen Klunowski, Obvious Blue Chip (Roll With Joe-Put On A Clinic) is trained by Mark Steacy. It was the third victory in four starts in 2017 for Obvious Blue, a winner of $58,827 this year and $94,306 lifetime.   Robin J ($3.20) was the fastest in the three $15,000 Excelsior A Series races with a 1:54.4 time for driver Scott Zeron. Takeyourbreathaway (MacDonald) lit up the tote board with a $45.80 win in 1:56.4 while Bestgirlfriendever ($12.20) tripped the timer in 1:57.1 for Bartlett.   In the lone $6,700 Excelsior B Series race, Miss Roll Joe ($6.00) got the decision for Jim Morrill Jr. and local trainer Jim Graham in 1:58.4.   Morrill Jr. finished the night with a driving triple while Bartlett, MacDonald and Ray Fisher Jr. all doubled.   Racing will resume on Friday night with an 11-race program set for 5 p.m. The action will continue on Saturday with 11 races slated for 6 p.m. and on Sunday afternoon beginning at 12:30 p.m. The Sunday matinee will feature the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old filly trotters with Barn Bella scheduled to compete in the fifth race.   For more information including the latest news, upcoming promotions, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com   by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway  

WASHINGTON, PA, June 21, 2017 -- Call For Justice, who hadn't won in five starts since leaving The Meadows, made a triumphant return home Wednesday with a front-end harness racing victory in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap Trot. A 5-year-old son of Justice Hall-Mika's Mazurka, Call For Justice opened the year with five straight victories at The Meadows before shifting to Hoosier Park to face the trotting elite there. He hit the board in all five Indiana outings but couldn't reach the winners' circle. He ended that frustrating streak when he made the front past the quarter for Dave Palone and held off the pocket-sitting Classicality by a neck in 1:53.2, with Boy Meets Girl K third. Ron Burke trains Call For Justice, who now boasts a lifetime bankroll of $358,167, for Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC. In Wednesday's companion feature, the $18,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Trot, 1-2 favorite Barn Girl withstood the first-over challenge of Dirty Secret and prevailed by 1/2 length in 1:54.3. Bessie rallied for second while Dirty Secret held show. Aaron Merriman drove the 5-year-old daughter of Cash Hall-Turquoise Sweetie, who extended her career bankroll to $480,268, for trainer Bill Bercury and owner Renee Bercury. Elsewhere on the card, Kristy'sgingergal became harness racing's fastest freshman filly trotter on a five-eighths-mile track when she won at first asking for trainer/driver Tyler Stillings and owner Baby Horses LLC. The daughter of Pilgrims Chuckie-Outback Kristy scored in 1:59.1. Stillings enjoyed another victory with a debuting 2-year-old filly from his stable when Swan Mama (Swan For All-Little Rigs) broke her maiden in 2:00.1. Live racing at The Meadows resumes Friday with a special twilight program, first post 5 PM. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

Less than a week ago, harness racing trainer Julie Miller was uncertain whether she would send Devious Man to the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial. Devious Man's performance in last Sunday's Empire Breeders Classic made the decision easier. Devious Man won the EBC championship by four lengths over Bill's Man in 1:52.2, prompting Team Miller -- Julie and husband Andy -- to enter the colt in the Beal. The event for 3-year-old trotters attracted 23 horses, including award-winning filly Ariana G, so three eliminations will be contested Saturday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Devious Man is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the second division. Giveitgasandgo, coming off a win in a division of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes, is the 5-2 favorite in the first elimination and New Jersey Sire Stakes filly champion Ariana G is the 2-1 choice in the third. The top three finishers from each elimination advance to the $500,000 final July 1. Eliminations for the Ben Franklin for older male pacers, Max C. Hempt Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers, and James M. Lynch Memorial for 3-year-old female pacers are also on the Saturday card at Pocono. Devious Man, owned by Stroy Inc. and the Andy Miller Stable, is undefeated in three races this year. For his career, he has won 10 of 15 starts and earned $455,393. "We were on the fence about going to the Earl Beal, but that last start solidified that he deserved a chance," Julie Miller said. "We were really happy with that start. You couldn't have mapped it out any better; when Andy (came off cover from second over) he just scooted down the lane. "He didn't have to over-exert himself in his last couple starts, so we should have a nice fresh horse going to the Earl Beal. These starts this year have been confidence boosters. I'm really pleased with that." Of Devious Man's 10 lifetime wins, nine have come in races restricted to New York-bred horses. But the colt did win on the Grand Circuit last season, capturing a division of the International Stallion Stakes in 1:53.2 at Lexington's Red Mile. The clocking was the sixth-fastest win time of 2016 for a 2-year-old trotter. "He was solid last year and he won in Lexington so I thought he could maybe step up to the Grand Circuit level, but you don't want to put that kind of pressure on them," Miller said. "You don't want to over-stake them or over-train them trying to work on a schedule. We pretty much let him decide how he was going. "He trained down good this year. He gave me every indication we could enter him in these kinds of stakes races. I know he's only faced New York company so far this year, but he's raced really well. I think he deserves a chance against open company in the Earl Beal." Devious Man is among a group of 19 Beal participants eligible to the $1 million Hambletonian Stakes on Aug. 5 at the Meadowlands. Devious Man, a son of Credit Winner out of the mare Miss Garland, is a half-brother to 2005 Hambletonian winner Vivid Photo. "If my horse can work it out, that's great for us," Miller said. "I think he's a smart horse and a very versatile horse. No matter the size of the track Andy can drive him the way the race develops for him. We don't always have to be on the front, we don't always have to have cover. "There are three (Beal) divisions, which shows there are a lot of nice horses. No one is bowing out. But I feel confident in our chances. He's given us no reason not to give him a chance." Ariana G, who received the 2016 Dan Patch and O'Brien awards for best 2-year-old female trotter in the U.S. and Canada, is bidding to become the first filly to win the Beal in its seven-year history. She is this year's fastest 3-year-old trotter, with a mark of 1:51.1. Her trainer, Jimmy Takter, has won the Beal three times. For a look at all the entries for Saturday at Pocono, click here. ROAD TO THE HAMBLETONIAN A look at open stakes for 3-year-old male trotters and state-restricted stakes featuring Hambletonian eligibles Date - Track - Event - First - Second - Third May 6 - Freehold - Dexter Cup - Lord Cromwell - Gustavo Fring - Southwind Cobra May 19 - Meadowlands - NJSS - Long Tom - Yes Mickey - Deacon Tony May 19 - Meadowlands - NJSS - What The Hill - Southwind Cobra - New Jersey Viking May 20 - Meadows - PASS - Sortie - Giveitgasandgo - High Glider May 20 - Meadows - PASS - Andy M - Gustavo Fring - Stealth Hanover May 20 - Meadows - PASS - Common Parlance - Brown Bear - Brand New Key May 29 - Vernon - NYSS - Stick With Me Kid - Bill's Man - Top Flight Angel May 29 - Vernon - NYSS - Devious Man - Lord Cromwell - Aces And Eights May 29 - Vernon - NYSS - Enterprise - Swell Chap - Meetmeinthemiddle June 2 - Meadowlands - NJSS Final - Long Tom - King On The Hill - What The Hill June 3 - Meadows - Currier & Ives - Fraser Ridge - Meme Hanover - Muay Hanover June 3 - Meadows - Currier & Ives - Moonshiner Hanover - Giveitgasandgo - Lars Perry June 3 - Meadows - Currier & Ives - Sortie - Dover Dan - Always A Good Time June 9 - Mohawk - Goodtimes Elim - International Moni - Guardian Angel As - Jake June 9 - Mohawk - Goodtimes Elim - Enterprise - AWOL Hanover - Shake It Off Lindy June 9 - Vernon - EBC Elim - Bill's Man - Such An Angel - Stick With Me Kid June 9 - Vernon - EBC Elim - Devious Man - Swell Chap - Lord Cromwell June 10 - Pocono - PASS - Rubio - Muscles Jared - Di Oggi June 10 - Pocono - PASS - Dover Dan - Moonshiner Hanover - Sir John F June 10 - Pocono - PASS - Giveitgasandgo - President Lindy - Andy M June 17 - Mohawk - Goodtimes - International Moni - Mass Production - Seven And Seven June 18 - Vernon - Empire Breeders Classic - Devious Man - Bill's Man - Stick With Me Kid June 24 - Pocono - Earl Beal Jr. Elims - July 1 - Pocono - Earl Beal Jr. Memorial - July 9 - Pocono - PA All Stars - July 15 - Meadowlands - Stanley Dancer Memorial - July 22 - Meadowlands - Tompkins-Geers - July 29 - Meadowlands - Reynolds - Aug. 5 - Meadowlands - Hambletonian - Hambletonian eligible in bold Ken Weingartner

Today the Norwegian Trotting Association published the verdict in the doping case against French harness racing trainer Fabrice Souloy, who had four trotters test positive for Cobalt in June 2016 at Bjerke, Oslo. Souloy was banned from training and driving for 15 years and fined $60,000. The association had wanted Souloy banned for life and fined $25,000. Souloy is still awaiting a verdict from the Swedish Trotting Association regarding a positive test from the Elitlopp 2016 -- also for Cobalt -- and it was thought that the two Scandinavian associations would have published their verdicts together. However, due to vacation the Swedish verdict is first expected to be known around July 5. At present Souloy is serving a one year ban in France after a positive test for Cobalt. by Karsten Bønsdorf, USTA Senior Newsroom Correspondent

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