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Pompano Beach, FL...December 2, 2019...Pompano Park played host to the best of the best on Sunday (December 1) with $414,000 up for grabs as the FSBOA presented the 2019 edition of Super Night, a showcase of the top tharness racing wo and three year-olds in Florida. On the equine side of the ledger, the grand three year-old filly Natasha won her 15th straight in the $55,325 Breeders Stake for Wally Hennessey and Zaza Boy took top honors in the $54,090 companion pace for the boys. A complete wrap follows: $55,325 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD PACING FILLIES (NB) The splendid Six of Diamonds filly Natasha took home the top prize for driver Wally Hennessey, stopping the timer in a lifetime best 1:53. Trained by Kim Sears for owner-husband Jay, Natasha survived the outside post and a sizzling opening panel of :26.2 before subsequent fractions of :57 and 1:24.3 precluded a :28.2 finale to hit the wire two lengths clear of Prairie Cougar (Peter Wrenn) with Prairie Westerngal (Kevin Wallis) next. Caleb's Diamond T, closing fastest of all, finished fourth while Rockin Ellie picked up the final award in this classy septet of fillies. Said Hennessey after the race, "I have always said this filly is a 'freak' and she really proved her merit tonight after facing tough rivals like this, the outside post and a trying first quarter." Natasha Is now 7-for-7 this semester with her career earnings vaulting to $129,956. Interesting to note that the first three finishers all had drivers with more than 10,000 wins each with the total number of driving wins for all seven drivers totaled 46,502. $52,075 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD TROTTING COLTS/GELDINGS (NB) In a race where the final chart looked like a "tic-tac-toe" board with all the "x's," Rhinestone Cowboy, handled by Mike Micallef, rallied from a miscue of his own on the backstretch to win in a lifetime best 2:01.2. The son of Proud Bushy, trained by KIm Sears for owners Jay Sears and John Campagnuolo, came from 10 lengths out of it around the final bend to, first, collar the leading Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham) and, then, hold off the surging Prairie Gold Mine (Wally Hennessey) to score by three-parts-of-a-length over the latter with Prairie Romeo next. Prairie Tornado and YD Dream Machine completed the order of finish. As the wings folded, Prairie Romeo used his inside post to perfection and roared through an opening panel of :28.1 while building a five length lead over YD Dream Machine. That's when things began to get interesting as YD Dream Machine made a miscue bothering Prairie Gold Mine with Rhinestone Cowboy taking up the chase in second but four lengths away halfway through in :59 with Prairie Tornado improving his position two spots to third. On the backside, Rhinestone Cowboy made a break and found himself 10 lengths away around the final bend. But, after regaining his composure, Rhinestone Cowboy kept churning along, collaring the leader at mid-stretch and then holding off a furious late surge by Prairie Gold Mine. A smiling Micallef said after the race, "This proves the old adage 'you never give up!' When he made that jump on the backside, I thought we were out of the ballgame but you never know. He caught pretty quickly and raced very well after that...and that's what really counted here." Rhinestone Cowboy now has a 2-2-3 scorecard in seven starts with earnings of $444,481. $52,500 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD PACING FILLIES (NB) Laurie Lee, driven by Wally Hennessey, led every long stride of her mile to score a handy win in 1:56.4--this after carving up panels of :28.1, :58.2 and 1:27.3 along the way. The daughter of Royel Millennium hit the line 3 1/2 lengths clear over the pocket-sitting Pocahontas Cam (Kevin Wallis) with Prairie Fashion (Dave Ingraham) next. Alil Touch Of Pink and Gold Star Igotdis followed. Trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, Laurie Lee, named after one of the more prominent breeders in Florida, scored her fourth win of the year in nine starts, pushing her earnings just under the $50,000 plateau--$49,975 to be precise. $51,540 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD TROTTING FILLIES (NB) Prairie Delight, driven by Wally Hennessey, stalked the pacesetter until the final bend before tilting out and overtaking the leader turning for home and on to a 3 1/4 length score in 2:03.4. Trained by Jim McDonald, who co-owns with wife Dona and Bill Bigler, this daughter of Shibboleth Hanover allowed Callin On Sunday, handled by Mike Simons, cut the mustard through panels of :29.1, :59.3 and 1:30.2 before swooping by to the handy score--her sixth of the year in seven starts. Whitney Annette (Dave Ingraham) was next while Proud Money and Brasen Bo completed the field. Prairie Delight now sports earnings of $54,091. $50,750 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD TROTTING GELDINGS (NB) Pacing Pretty Stables' Damien Hall, with Wally Hennessey handling the lines for trainer Jim McDonald, led gate-to-wire to keep his 2019 season unblemished--now six-for-six--with a lifetime best 1:58 performance. This altered son of Cash Hall, once again, led at every pole through panels of :29.1, :59.4 and 1:284 before a :29.1 finale sealed the deal over Savin Park (MIke Micallef), Prairie Gem (Peter Wrenn) was next, followed by McGoldrick. Damien Hall shows all "1's" in his 30 charted points of call and has banked $53,024 lifetime--$42,631 this semester. $49,250 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD TROTTING FILLIES (NB) Proud Sophie, with Dave Ingraham in the bike, used her individual final half in :57.4 to squeak by a stubborn Kerry B (Wally Hennessey) in 2:00.4. Pocket-sitting Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn) finished third in this trio. The winner, a daughter of Proud Bushy, was away last allowing Kerry B the advantage of carding soft panels of :30.2 and 1:02.2. On the backside, the pace quickened as Proud Sophie tilted out and began gnawing forward, drawing on even terms with Kerry B around the final bend with three-quarters clocked in 1:31.2. From there, it was a war all the way home as Proud Sophie edged by once they straightened away and gutted out the game win on the wire. Trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and Dr. David Fishman, Proud Sophie has never been worse than second in her 12 lifetime starts (seven wins) and now sports bounty of $108,740. $49,380 BREEDERS STAKE FOR TWO YEAR-OLD PACING COLTS/GELDINGS (NB) In a war that lasted just about the entire mile, Hurrikaanekingjames, with Carl Garofalo in his sulky, held off the furious late binge of Repeal Or Replace (Andy Santeramo) to win in 1:53.4, a new lifetime best. Shuldahadahunemoon (Mike Simons) was third in this trio. At the outset, both Hurrikanekingjames and Repeal Or Replace went in search of the lead and, at the opener in :27.1, the latter stuck his head in front but was forced back in the pocked as he couldn't clear. On they flew through fractions of :55.4 and 1:24.3 with Hurrikanekingjames now encountered by Repeal Or Replace turning for home. They went tooth and nail right to the wire with Hurricanekingjames surviving the onslaught to prevail by a half length. John McDermott, Jr. trains the son of So Surreal for Jonathan Klee Racing, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investment Group and George Vierno with the winner now showing earnings of $103,780. Driver Carl Garofalo, by the way, drove in six races since Pompano Park opened one month ago and has won all six! $54,090 BREEDERS STAKE FOR THREE YEAR-OLD PACING COLTS/GELDINGS Zaza Boy, with Mike Micallef handling the lines, stalked the pacesetting Mister Marvalous (Wally Hennessey) and went on to score a handy win in 1:53.4 over the late charging Gold Star Yoder (James Yoder). JB's Boomerang (Bryce Fenn) was third over Mister Marvalous while Gold Star Hefner earned the minor award in a field scratched down to five. Zaza Boy and Mister Marvalous went warring as the gate sprung clear with the latter taking command just short of the opener in a hot :26.2. Hennessey then got a bit of a breather as he reached the half in :56.3. On the backside, the pace began to quicken with Mister Marvalous still in front past the third station in 1:25.1 with Zaza Boy now looming boldly along side. Once they straightened away, Zaza Boy opened daylight and was never in danger as Gold Star Yoder closed with sharp pace to finish 1 1/2 lengths away. Micallef had high praise for the winner saying, "Michile and Rod (Lorenzo) have had him sharp for a good, long time and he was become very handy to handle--not headstrong. I think the fact that he's learned to relax has helped his game immensely." Rod Lorenzo owns Zaza Boy in partnership with Souren Hovsepian. The sophomore gelded son of Rockingcam now has $68,530 in 2019 and $93,707 lifetime. As the 2 to 1 second choice, Zaza Boy paid $6.20 to win. Driver Wally Hennessey had a six-pack on Super Night while Kim Sears had a grand slam on the training side of the ledger. Racing continues Monday with first post set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry, for the FSBOA and Pompano Park                      

Pompano Beach, Florida...November 27, 2019...Literally 1/1000th of a second decided the winner of Pompano Park's harness racing feature trot on Tuesday night as Muscles For Life, driven by Wally Hennessey, eked out the photo finish win over The Lionking AS, with Kevin Wallis in the bike. Both trotters were timed in 1:53.4 with Muscles For Life timed exactly in 1:53.807 and Thelionking AS clocked in 1:53.808 according to the American Teletimer photo watch. Joey Pro was third for Corey Braden, four lengths away, while Railee Workable and Stache earned the final awards in the field of nine. At the outset, both The Lionking AS (post 5) and Muscles For Life (post 9) went in search of the lead with the latter out-muscling the former to a :27.4 opener. Once on top, Hennessey was able to rate a second quarter, reaching the half in :57.4. On the backside, the pace quickened noticeably with Muscles For Life and The Lionking AS remaining one-two past the third bend in 1:25.4 Turning for home, the two grand trotters went on an all out war to the finish with Muscles For Life still fighting hard and The Lionking AS gnawing away right to the wire. Lamenting about the event, Hennessey said, "It was a classic dog fight, wasn't it? My horse trotted his last half in :56, so I know he wasn't quitting an Kevin' horse was as game as they come. To tell you the truth, I wasn't sure if he got me or not...it was that close!" Muscles For Life is a six year-old son of Muscle Mass trained by Steve Oldford for owner Jarold Hawks with the win being his 13th of the year vaulting his 2019 bankroll over the $100,000 plateau--$101,930 to be precise. Lifetime, Muscles For Life has won 25 of his 75 career starts, good for $290,590. As the 1 to 5 tote-board favorite, Muscles For Life paid $2.40 to his multitude of faithful. Racing continues Wednesday with a Super Hi-5 Jackpot not standing at $22,635.12. Post time is set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park        

Pompano Beach, FL...November 25, 2019...The FSBOA sponsored  harness racing stakes honoring the memory of two giants of Florida--Dr. Melvyn Aylor and Tom Audley--were held on Sunday night with the highlight being the grand filly Natasha extending her winning streak to 14, ironically achieved over the past 14 months, in the Audley Memorial for three year-old pacing fillies. The splendid three year-old daughter of Six Of Diamonds overcame her toughest competition to date, being bothered early on and the outside nine post to out-game a very game Prairie Cougar in 1:54.3 Wally Hennessey was in the bike for owner Jay Sears and trainer Kim Sears for the win while Peter Wrenn was in the Mike Deters sulky back of Prairie Cougar in a classic duel between two drivers that have combined wins totaling well over 20,000 in their respective great careers. Favored Prairie Western Gal, with Kevin Wallis (also more than 10,000 driving wins) handling her lines, was next followed by Caleb's Diamond T and Lime Twist in the field of nine. At the outset, Natasha, usually early footed, was forced to avoid the confusion early with a couple of breakers and the lively footed Prairie Westerngal on her scooter early, posting an opener of :27.2. Prairie Cougar, leaving from post eight, was also grinding forward and she took command three-eighths in and rolled to the half in :57.2. On the backside, Natasha began gnawing away from five lengths away and hooked up with Prairie Westerngal as both reached the third station in 1:26.2. From there, it was a fight to the finish with neither willing to give an inch until Natasha earning the photo finish nod. After the event, Hennessey remarked, "this was not an easy trip for her. She had to overcome lots of situations and she, again, proved her merit. She is some filly!" Natasha is now 6-for-6 this semester and sports a 16-14-0-1 scorecard with the win nudging her over the $100,000 mark in career earnings--$102,344 to be precise. Off as second choice in the betting at 3 to 2, Natasha paid $5.00 to win. Here are the other stakes results from Sunday night at the Pomp. AUDLEY MEMORIAL--THREE YEAR-OLD COLTS/GELDING PACE Mr. Marvalous, last year's two year-old champion, earned his first win of the year in five starts by taking top honors in the Audley for sophomore pacing colts and geldings. An altered son of Delmarvalous, trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, got picture perfect handling by Wally Hennessey to score in a lifetime best 1:54.4 over the fast closing JB's Boomerang (Bryce Fenn). Zaza Boy (Mike Micallef) was third followed by Gold Star Yoder and Gold Star Hefner. The winner, away with his usual alacrity, yielded to Zaza Boy early, letting the latter post all the panels of :28.2, :58.3 and 1:26.4 before finding a seam turning for home and mowing down the leader by mid-stretch and then handily holding off the "Boomerang" in deep stretch. Mr. Marvalous now is 8-for-17 lifetime with earnings of $58,502. He paid $5.00 to win as second choice in the betting. AUDLEY MEMORIAL--THREE YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT it was a "stroll in the park"--Pompano Park--for Damien Hall as this three year-old gelded son of Cash Hall coasted through fractions of :30.1, :59.4 and 1:29.4 before an effortless :30.3 finale left him 23 lengths ahead of his nearest rival, Savin Park, with John Campagnuolo in the bike, Prairie Gem (Mike Deters) was third in this trio after suffering some miscues through the mile. Trained by Jim McDonald for the Pacing Pretty Stable, Damien Hall kept his 2019 record unscathed in winning his fifth straight win, sending his bankroll career-wise to $27,651. AUDLEY MEMORIAL--THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT Proud Sophie, with Dave Ingraham driving, annihilated her former race record of 2:02.4 with a 1:58.1 win for owners Jay Sears and Dr. David Fishman. The Kim Sears trainee defeated Kerry B (Wally Hennessey) with pacesetting Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn) third. Proud Sophie, a daughter of Proud Bushy, away in good order, found the garden spot early as Crown Bushy put up lively numbers of :28.3 and :58.4. Three-eighths from home, Proud Sophie zipped to the lead and went by the third station in 1:28 as Kerry B took up the chase. In the lane, Proud Sophie and Kerry B went to war with the latter gnawing away but falling just a bit shy at the wire. The lightly raced Proud Sophie now had six wins and five seconds in 11 career starts with earnings of $84,128. AYLOR MEMORIAL--TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE Laurie Lee, trained by Kim Sears for husband Jay and Richard Dunmire, scorched the Pompano Park oval in a lifetime best 1:56.3, reducing her former mark by 2 3/5 seconds. Wally Hennessey was in the juvenile's sulky as she led every long stride of her journey, carding panels of :29, :58.4 and 1:27.2 along the way. Pocahontas Cam (Kevin Wallis) was second after enjoying a trip in the garden spot all the way, while Prairie Fashion (Dave Ingraham) was next. Gold Star Igotdis and Alil Touch of Pink completed the field. The daughter of Royal Millennium took home the major share of the $15,000 purse, sending her earnings to $23,725 in eight starts. AYLOR MEMORIAL--TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT Rhinestone Cowboy, with Mike Micallef in the sulky, took top honors in the Aylor Memorial two year-old colt/gelding trot with a maiden win in 2:02.2. Trained by Kim Sears for Jay Sears and John Campagnuolo, Rhinestone Cowboy was perfectly mannered in his conquest of the previously undefeated Prairie Gold Mine (Wally Hennessey) and Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham). YD Dream Machine and Prairie Tornado completed the order of finish. A son of Proud Bushy, Rhinestone Cowboy earned his maiden win after several attempts chasing Prairie Gold Mine. In a post race interview, the clever Micallef began with a riddle of his own, "what's the difference between the letters 'n' and 't?' Answer: maNNers, maTTers! And that was the difference today. My colt kept his cool and kept his mind on the business of trotting while the others suffered some mishaps along the way. "He's got talent and rarely makes a break and that's very beneficial in these two year-old events!" The maiden win sent the Cowboy's earnings to $18,454. AYLOR MEMORIAL--TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT Prairie Delight avenged her only loss by out-gaming the pacesetter Callin On Sunday by a head in a lifetime best 2:03.3. Wally Hennessey was subbing in the bike for trainer Jim McDonald and, for the initial time in six starts, was reserved off the early pace as Callin On Sunday (Mike Simons) out up the number of :30.2, 1:01.4 and 1:32.1 before Prairie Delight wore down the leader right at the wire. Brasen Bo (Mickey McNichol) was third while Whitney Annette was next in this quartet. A daughter of Shibboleth Hanover, Prairie Delight is owned by trainer McDonald along with wife, Dona, and Bill Bigler. The win vaulted Prairie Delight's earnings over the $27,000 mark in her six starts. AYLOR MEMORIAL--TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/EGLDING PACE Hurrikanekingjames, driven by Carl Garofalo, had all he could handle in scoring his fifth straight win in Florida stakes company with a hard-earned 1:54.4 lifetime mark win over a stubborn Repeal Or Replace (Andy Santeramo). Shuldahadahunemoon (Mike Simons) completed the order in this one. Hurrikanekingjames, a son of So Surreal, let Repeal and Replace do all the heavy lifting while putting up numbers of :28.2, :57.2 and 1:26.2 before hooking up with him in a memorable duel throughout the entire stretch. In keeping his fall driving record perfect at 5-for-5, Garofalo said, "It sure wasn't a cakewalk--that's for sure. Andy's (Santeramo) horse (Repeal Or Replace) gave my horse all he could handle." With the win, Hurrikanekingjames earnings moved to $74,152 to go along with his new lifetime mark. Combining his three Sunday night stakes wins, Hennessey wound up with seven wins for the night--four more on the betting card. Racing continues on Monday night with the Super Hi-5 Jackpot now standing $20,237.13. Post time is set for 7:20 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park an the FSBOA            

Pompano Beach, FL...November 4, 2019...Heavy weather dampened the racetrack in South Florida on Sunday night--but the weather couldn't dampen an excellent opening night of harness racing at Pompano Park. With winds swirling and downpours continuing throughout the opening night festivities, track record holder Panocchio stole the show, winning his 67th career race--his 43rd win at Pompano Park. The now nine year old conquered stiff competition and a track rated "sloppy" to score the win in 1:52.2--the fastest mile of the night. Handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Jim Mattison, who co-owns with Emile Johnson, Jr., Panocchio out-punched favorite War-N-Munn, handled by Kevin Wallis, and proceeded through panels of :27, :55.3 and 1:24 before a :28.2 finale shut the door by a half length over War-N-Munn. Hot Art, with Rick Plano in the bike, finished third while Fritzie Pick Up Man and Harry Terror earned the finals awards in the classy field. Panocchio, the brilliant and rugged son of No Pan Intended, now has a lifetime scorecard of 67-48-18 in 195 starts, good for $613,388--$49,050 this semester--to go along with his track record mark of 1:48.3 set in 2015. Panocchio was second choice in the wagering and returned $6.40 to win. After the race, Hennessey remarked, "This is one amazing horse. He has such a great attitude and desire to win and, yes, he might have lost a step from his track record days, but he has a rare fight that makes him very special." Minutes before, Mattison sent his other stable star, Century Endeavor, to the gate and he proceeded to win in 1:53 for Wally Hennessey in a wire-to-wire effort featuring panels of :27.3, :57 and 1:25.4 before slamming on a very stubborn Skyful of Lighters, with Dave Ingraham in his bike. Four Socks, in the garden spot most of the way, was third for Kevin Wallis while Sporty Redhot and Pointsman finished four-five in that mile. Century Endeavor is a four year-old gelded son of Shadow Play, co-owned by the trainer Mattison, along with Emile Johnson, Jr. and Vicki Mattison. The win was the 10th of the year for Century Endeavor and pushed his seasonal bankroll to $84,895 and $133,097 lifetime. At 3 to 5 on the tote-board, Century Endeavor paid $3.20 to his multitude of backers. Also on the card were four $12,000 finals of the Sunshine State Stakes for two year-olds with Hurricanekingjames, Prairie Delight, Gold Star Igotdis and Prairie Gold Mine reaching the winner's circle. Hurrikanekingjames, driven by Carl Garofalo, brought back memories of the great thoroughbred, Secretariat, as this son of So Surreal scored a win in the slop measuring an astounding 82 1/2 lengths over Shuldahadahunemoon (Nick Coblentz), who, obviously, didn't like the g""ooo"ing. Owned by Jonathan Klee Racing, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investment Group and George Vierno, Hurricanekingjames swept through the three legs and final of this series like a hurricane in stretching his winning streak to four. MIchile Lorenzo trains the colt, who now has a bankroll exceeding $65,000 this year. Prairie Delight, with trainer Jim McDonald in her sulky, took top honors in the juvenile trot for the fillies, extending her winning streak to four to remain perfect in her young career. Proud Money Wally Hennessey was second while Whitney Annette, handled by Dave Ingraham was third. The early leader, Brasen Bo, was first off the wings but made a miscue three-eighths into the mile dashing her chances for an upset. Trainer McDonald owns Prairie Delight, a young daughter of Shibboleth Hanover, along with wife Dona and Bill Bigler. Both of the aforementioned events were off the betting card. On the card, Gold Star Igotdis, a daughter of Rock On, driven by Corey Braden, proved that last week's win was no fluke as she came from last in her quintet through the opening half-mile and paced her final half in :58 to pull off a 4 to 1 upset in 1:59 over the 1 to 5 favorite Laurie Lee (Wally Hennessey).Pocahontas Cam, handled by MIke Micallef, was third over Prairie Fashion and A Lil Touch of Pink. After the race, a humble Braden said, "Maggie (trainer Audley) said she's got a lot of talent and she's full of pep and vigor. Boy, was she right. When I moved her on the backside, she just vaulted me around the rest of the way. Very impressive!" Second choice in the betting, Gold Star Igotdis paid $10,00 to win and lowered her lifetime mark by two seconds, despite the sloppy going. Finally, Prairie Gold Mine, handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Mike Deters, cruised around the oval in a lifetime best 2:02.4--her margin of victory 1 1/2 lengths over Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham) with Rhinestone Cowboy (Mike Micallef). YD Dream Machine and Prairie Tornado completed the order of finish. Prairie Gold Mine is now three-for-three for Deters, who co-owns with Laurie Poulin, Fritz Racing and Fred Morosini. Off officially at 1 to 20, Prairie Gold Mine paid $2.10 to win. Racing continues on Monday with a fourth race pentafecta carryover of $945.53 and a Super Hi-5 jackpot of 563.07. Post time is 7:20 p.m.  by John Berry for Pompano Park and the FSBOA        

Pompano Beach, FL...October 31, 2019...Pompano Park opens its 126 night 2019-2020 harness racing season on Sunday, November 3, with track record holder Panocchio in action and driver Rick Plano just one win away from a milestone--his 7,000th career driving win. The gallant nine year-old Panocchio now has 66 career wins with 42 of those victories achieved over Pompano Park's five-eighths mile oval. Trained by Jim Mattison, who co-owns with Emile Johnson, Jr., Panocchio, now nine, still has that same will to win since his very first trip to the Pompano winner's circle six years ago. Mattison said, "He may have lost a step of two on the track but he sure hasn't lost a desire to win. Vicky (Jim's wife) takes such tender loving care of him and, really, he's our boy! "He sure loves this track and he loves the warm weather and I don't think there will ever be another one like him for us." Panocchio has drawn post six on Sunday night and Hall of Fame driver Wally Hennessey will be in his sulky. He's listed as second choice at 5 to 2 on the morning line behind the new arrival to Pompano Park, War-N-Munn, owned trained and driven by Kevin Wallis and listed at 9 to 5 in the program. Hennessey and Wallis both have over 10,000 career driving wins in their respective driving careers. Rick Plano comes into the action with 6,999 career driving win and is one of an elite group of trainer-drivers who have combined wins in both categories totaling over 10,000 with over $50,000,000 in purse earnings. Said Plano about his success spanning five decades, "It's been a great ride and I hope I can get 1,000 more. I have been lucky enough to have a great wife of 42 years and some exceptional help that have been dedicated to the health of our horses. I just hope that good health will allow me to continue competitively for years to come." Prior to the pari-mutuel card, a pair of $12,000 FSBOA sponsored Sunshine State Stakes finals will be contested. A pair of winning streaks are on the line in those events as Hurrikanekingjames and Prairie Delight will attempt to stretch their skeins to four straight. Post time for the nine race program is 7:20 p.m. by John Berry, for Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...Oct. 26, 2019...Amid intermittent sprinkles and strong winds, the outstanding Six of Diamonds filly Natasha extended her winning streak to 11 dating back over the last 13 months with a handy 1:56 win over a Pompano Park track labeled “good” dulled a bit by the aforementioned rain. The win came during the eight race Sunshine State Stakes for Florida eligible two and three year-old sponsored by the FSBOA--Natasha’s win in the division for three year-old pacing fillies. Handled again by Wally Hennessey for trainer Kim Sears and owner Jay Sears, Natasha brushed to the lead around the opening bend and carded fractions of :27.4, :58.3 and 1:27 before a final panel of :29 sealed the deal over a game Gold Star Stormie (Corey Braden) with Lime Twist (Mike Micallef) a late charging third. The win pushed Natasha’s career bounty close to $75,000 with the bulk of the lucrative Florida stakes season looming ahead in the next few weeks. In admiring the talent of Natasha, Hennessey related, “She does everything right. She knows how to leave and, when she make the top, she knows how to relax and she knows how to fight when the competition starts to throw their punches.” It was one of four wins for Hennessey on the non-betting stakes program with the Hall of Fame driver also scoring with Prairie Gold Mine in the two year-old trot for the boys, Kerry B in the sophomore filly trot and Damien Hall in the three year-old trot featuring a quartet of geldings. Hennessey’s scorecard reads 13-4-2 in his 20 starts during this early stakes season. Here is a recap of the Saturday third leg action of the Sunshine State Stakes: TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT--PRAIRIE DELIGHT Prairie Delight kept her lifetime record unblemished with her third straight career victory, scoring for trainer-driver Jim McDonald in a lifetime best 2:06.1. The daughter of Shibboleth Hanover survived a skittish moment while making a quarter move to the top and went on to sore a win measuring a neck over the late surging Brasen Bo (Mickey McNichol). Whitney Annette (Dave Ingraham) finished third in her quintet, well back of the top two. After the event, driver McDonald explained, “when I made that move for the lead around Mickey’s filly, my filly shied away from Mickey’s whip and she went way wide. She kept her composure, though, made the lead and dug in late. She gave me all she had and that’s all I expect from my young horses.” Co-owned by McDonald along with wife Dona and Bill Bigler, Prairie Delight is yet another strong youngster bred by Laurie Poulin. TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT--PRAIRIE GOLD MINE Prairie Gold Mine, handled by Wally Hennessey, extended his unbeaten streak to two with a solid 2:04.3 win--his margin two lengths over Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham) with Rhinestone Cowboy (Mike Micallef) third after recovering from an early miscue. Prairie Gold Mine, a gelded son of Diamond Goal, took charge early on and carved out fractions of :31.1, 1:03.3 and 1:34.3 before holding off a brief bid from the runner-up with a :30 closer. Prairie Gold Mine is co-owned by breeder Laurie Poulin along with Fred Morosini, Fritz Racing and trainer Mike Deters. TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE--GOLD STAR IGOTDIS Gold Star Igotdis, gave driver Walter Ross, Jr. all he could handle during a vastly improved 2:01 win, featuring an individual :58.2 final half by the winner, including a :28.3 finale. The young lass by Rock On was away third allowing Pocahontas Cam (Mike Micallef) to set the pace of :30, 1:02 and 1:31.4 with Alil Touch of Pink in the garden spot before she tilted out with 5/16ths remaining, wearing down the leader in the final 16th and drawing away late while racing in the center of the track. Trained by Maggie Audley for the Gold Star Farm, it was the first success in three life starts for Gold Star Igotdis prompting trainer Audley to remark, “We absolutely couldn’t have done this without the great horsemanship of Wally Ross, Jr. “He always said this filly had some potential and, after her first two starts, we were beginning to have our doubts but Wally said ‘I’m tellin’ ya, she’s gonna be all right. Let’s just let her get over her growing pains and she’s gonna be a real good filly! “Like I said, ‘we couldn’t have done this without Wally. He is just a great horseman!” Prairie Fashion (Dave Ingraham) finished third in this quartet of fillies. TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING PACE--HURRIKANE KINGJAMES Hurrikanekingjames, driven this time around by Carl Garofalo, controlled the festivities from his rail post position and led every stride of his mile, hitting the wire in 2:00.2. This son of So Surreal, trained by Michile Lorenzo for the Jonathan Klee Stable, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investment Group and George Vierno, sawed through panels 30.2, 1:01.1 and 1:30.3 before a :29.4 jaunt home sealed the affair easily over Shuldahadahunemoon (Nick Coblentz) by 10 3/4 lengths. This two year-old races like a seasoned veteran with 4-0-2 scorecard in 12 lifetime starts and earnings approaching $59,000 to go along with a sharp Saratoga mark of 1:55.1. THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT-KERRY B Kerry B proved, once again, that she loves her Florida surroundings as this daughter of Muscle Mass toured Pompano Park’s “good” oval in 2:04.1, dodging raindrops along the way. Handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Kim Sears and owner-husband Jay Sears, Kerry B had an open lead all the way around while posting panels of :30.3, 1:02.2 and 1:33.1 before coasting home to hit the line in 2:04. Proud Sophie (Dave Ingraham) was second, a nose better than Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn)--both 7 1/2 lengths away. Kerry B is perfect at Pompano this fall semester with her lifetime earnings around $58,000. THREE YEARA-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT--DAMIAN HALL Damien Hall, handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Jim McDonald and the Pacing Pretty Stable, cruised around the Pompano Park oval in a lifetime best 2:00.1, a new lifetime mark. The altered son of Cash Hall, using the rail post position to perfection, churned through panels of :29.2, 1:01.1 and 1:31.2 before shutting the door on his opposition with a sharp :28.4 finale. McGoldrick (Dave Ingraham) tried to stay with the leader but made a miscue in the lane and finished 10 3/4 lengths away. Savin Park (John Campagnuolo) was third in the quartet. The win kept Daamian Hall’s record unblemished this year at 3-for-3 and left McDonald’s training scorecard during this early stakes season at a perfect 5-for-5. THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE--NATASHA Natasha pushed her winning streak to 11 stretching back to September 15, 2018 with a sharp 1:56 performance for Wally Hennessey, who was in the bike for trainer Kim Sears and owner Jay Sears, The outstanding daughter of Six of Diamonds took charge from Gold Star Stormie shortly after the start and put up numbers of :27.4, a well rated :58.2 and a picked up 1:27 before stretching her lead with every stride during a :29 final quarter. Gold Star Stormie (Corey Braden) did finish second while Lime Twist (Mike Micallef) was a very fast closing third. Natasha, last year’s Super Night champion in her juvenile division for pacing fillies, now is undefeated in three starts this year with her lifetime bounty approaching $75,000. Said Hennessey after the win, “What can I say that hasn’t been said already. She does this all on her own...like a guy in the cockpit on automatic pilot.” THREE YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING PACE--JB’S BOOMERANG JB’S Boomerang, a gelded son of Royel Millennium, finally got his first lifetime win with a furious closing kick to win in 1:57 for driver-trainer Bryce Fenn. After just missing last week, JB’s Boomerand rallied way wide at the top of the lane as the field stretched four across the track in the final 16th and just did nose out Mister Marvalous (Wally Hennessey), who found his best stride late while saving ground along the pylons. The official margin was a neck. Gold Star Hefner (Corey Braden) was hung out to dry like wet laundry through panels of : 29.4, :59.3 and 1:28, actually stuck his nose in front just yards from the wire, and finished a very game third. Bryce is part-owner of the winner along with Marah Lee and, after the race, said, “well, we finally got there. He’s been racing so well--as have the others--and today was no different. He always gives his all and, today, that proved to be enough. It’s a very well matched division.” Pompano Park’s pari-mutuel season begins next Sunday, November 3. by John Berry, for the FSBOA and Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...Oct. 19, 2019...Sunshine State Stakes continued at Pompano Park on Saturday with Wally Hennessey winning five of his seven harness racing drives during the eight non-wagering events for two and three year-olds.   The Hall of Famer started his win rampage with the first time starter Prairie Gold Mine in the two year-old trot for colts and geldings and then continued his winning ways with Laurie Lee in the juvenile filly pace, Kerry B in the three year-old filly trot, Damien Hall in the sophomore trot for the three geldings entered and the outstanding Natasha in the three year-old filly pace.    Mike Micallef had a driving double on the card with Hurrikanekingjames in the two year-old event for colts and geldings and Zaza Boy winning a thriller in the pace consisting of a sextet of soph geldings. Jim McDonald kept his winning streak in the bike going with a win back of Prairie Delight in the trot for two year-old fillies.   On the training side of the ledger, Kim Sears had a triple, Jim McDonald and Michile Lorenzo had training doubles and Mike Deters returned to the Pomp with a training win, as well.   Here is a recap of the Saturday action.   TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT--PRAIRIE DELIGHT   Prairie Delight, a two year-old daughter of Shibboleth Hanover, led every stride of her mile from her outside post and scored a handy win for co-owner-trainer-driver Jim McDonald in 2:07.3. Proud Money (Wally Hennessey) was 4 1/2 lengths away in second as the winner built an insurmountable lead through panels of :31.2, 1:03.3 and 1:35.1 before coasting home unscathed. Brasen Bo (Mickey McNichol) rallied to be second. Prairie Delight is undefeated in her two lifetime starts.   McDonald owns in partnership with Dona McDonald and Bill Bigler.   TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT--PRAIRIE GOLD MINE   Prairie Gold Mine, making his first purse start after two qualifying events up north, made a quarter move to the top and went on to score a handy three length win for Wally Hennessey, who was in the bike for owners Laurie Poulin, Fred Morosini, Fritz Racing and trainer Mike Deters.   Carving out panels of 32.3, 1:04.2 and 1:35.3, this gelded son of Diamond Goal sprinted his final quarter in :29.4 to seal the deal over Rhinestone Cowboy (Mike Micallef) with Prairie Romeo (Dave Ingraham) next in the field of six.   After the event, Hennessey remarked, “he’s got a lot of speed alright and he could be a big factor if he minds his manners along the way. He was very sharp, especially once he got to the front!”   TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE--LAURIE LEE   Laurie Lee, with Wally Hennessey in her sulky driving for trainer Kim Sears and owners Jay Sears and Richard Dunmire, scored a two length win over the late charging Pocahontas Cam (Mike Micallef) with Alil Touch of Pink (Marc Major) next, 4 1/4 lengths away.    The daughter of Royel MIllennium showed speed leaving from post four, took the field through a :29.1 opener and loafed to a 1:01.1 half before beginning her half-mile sprint home with a :29.2 third panel and :28.3 final, hitting the wire in 1:59.1.   It was her second consecutive win in Sunshine State Stakes action prompting Hennessey to briefly remark, “Pretty impressive...she might just be the real deal going down the line!”   TWO YEAR-OLD COLT-GELDING PACE--HURRIKANEKINGJAMES   In a similar situation to last week, Hurrikanekingjames, driven by Mike Micallef, coasted around the Pompano Park oval in an effortless 2:00 off of fractions of :31, 1:01 and 1:30.2.   The son of So Surreal, trained by Michile Lorenzo for Jonathan Klee Racing, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investments and George Vierno, took advantage of rail post position in this “match race” or sorts and led at every pole, scoring a win measuring close to 10 lengths over Shuldahadahunemoon (Nick Cobelntz).   The “seasoned” Hurrikanekingjames now has three wins in 11 starts as a juvenile with earnings of over $56,000.   THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT--KERRY B   Kerry B, confidently handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Kim Sears and owner -husband Jay, scored a handy win over her only opponent, Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn) in the three year-old filly trot, stopping the timer in 2:01. The daughter of Muscle Mass, drawing the “outside” post in her event, allowed Crown Bushy to take advantage of the draw early before making a quarter (:30.2) to the top and posting subsequent panels of 1:01 and 1:31.1 before striding home in :29.2, reporting to the wire by 1 1/4 lengths.   Obviously enjoying her Pompano Park surroundings, Kerry B pushed her bankroll to $56,067 mark--$47,095 of that earned in South Florida.   THREE YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT--DAMIEN HALL   Pacing Pretty Stable’s Damien Hall took top honors in the Sunshine State Stake for three year-old trotting geldings with a gate-to-wire win in 2:00.2--a new lifetime mark--for Wally Hennessey, in the bike this week for trainer Jim McDonald.   The sophomore son of Cash Hall out-brushed his rivals from his outside post and posted fractions of :29.3, 1:01.2 and 1:31.4 before a :28.3 final sprint home left him 2 1/4 lengths ahead of the much improved McGoldrick (Dave Ingraham) with Savin Park (John Campagnuolo) completing the order.   It was the second straight win for Damien Hall, who scored with McDonald in the sulky last week. In explaining the switch to Hennessey this time around, McDonald said, “It’s simple logic. Wally cannot beat me if he’s on my horse!”   THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY PAVE--NATASHA   Natasha, described as a “freak” by driver Wally Hennessey, extended her winning streak to 11 stretching back to last season with a very handy 1:56 win for the Kim Sears trainee.   Owned by Jay Sears, the daughter of Six of Diamonds let Gold Star Stormie (Walter Ross, Jr.) take the field through an opener of :28.1 before a sharp and confident quarter move to the top precluded subsequent panels of :57.3 and 1:27.2 before charging home in :28.3 to seal the deal over Gold Star Stormie and Rockin Ellie (Dave Ingraham).   After the opening panel, the only minor challenge came from Lime Twist, who brushed up on the backside to engage the leader around the final bend.   After the event, driver Hennessey remarked, “She s a ‘freak. That’s all there is to it. She just knows and does what she’s supposed to do...and without much effort.”   THREE YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING PACE--ZAZA BOY   Zaza Boy, driven by Mike Micallef, eked out a nostril decision over the late charging JB’s Boomerang (Bryce Fenn) in a lifetime best 1:54.4.   The altered son of Rockincam, trainer by Michile Lorenzo for owners Souren Hovsepian and Rod Lorenzo lowered his mark of 1:56.1 established last week, fending off the :27.4 closing kick of JB’s Boomerang prompting driver Micallef to say, “It was nip and tuck all the way home. Zaza (Boy) kept fighting all the way and, to tell you the truth, I didn’t know if he got there or not...but he fought all the way!”   Mister Marvalous (Wally Hennessey) was third over O’Brockoli and Gold Star Yoder in the talented sextet.   Zaza Boy led gate-to-wire (as he did last week) and carded panels of ;27.4, :57.2 and 1:26.1 and needed every ounce of his :28.3 finale to win it.   Sunshine State Stakes action continues with the third leg next Saturday with post time set for 11:00 a.m. after qualifiers.   by John Berry for the FSBOA and Pompano Park

Pompano Beach, FL...Oct. 12, 2019...Pompano Park kicked off their Florida Stakes season with an eight race non-wagering program sponsored by the FSBOA on Saturday morning and, apropos during the baseball playoffs, a driving “grand slam” and two “doubles” highlighted the card. Hall of Fame driver Wally Hennessey had the grand slam pushing his lifetime win total to 10,292 while Jim McDonald and Carl Garofalo had the driving doubles. Hennessey reached the winner’s circle with Dave in the two year-old colt/gelding trot, Laurie Lee in the juvenile filly pace, Kerry B in the three year-old filly trot and Natasha in the sophomore filly pace. McDonald kicked off the festivities by Prairie Delight to a win in the filly trot for two yearolds and guided Damian Hall to a handy win in the three year-old trot featuring a trio of geldings. Garofalo guided Hurrikanekingjames to the winner’s circle in the two year-old colt/ gelding pace and then capped off the program with a sharp looking Zaza Boy in the three year-old pace featuring a sextet of geldings. Here is a complete recap of the eight race Sunshine State Stakes program: TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT-PRAIRIE DELIGHT Prairie Delight, perfectly handled by trainer Jim McDonald, led every step of her mile, kicking off her racing career with a 2:07 performance--her margin of victory just short of 20 lengths. The daughter of Shibboleth Hanover, owned in part by McDonald, along with Dona McDonald and Bill Bigler, carved up panels of :32, 1:02.3 and 1:34.3 along the way. Proud Money (Wally Hennessey) was second followed by Whitney Annette (Jay Sears) and Brasen Bo. TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING TROT-DAVE Dave, a son of Proud Bushy, overcame a miscue early and then benefitted from others miscues during the first three-eights of the mile to inherit the lead and went on to score an 18 1/2 length win in 2:11.1 for Wally Hennessey. Trained by Kim Sears for owners Dr. David Fishman and Jay Sears built an insurmountable lead half way through the mile and left YD Dream Machine (Marc Major), Rhinstone Cowboy (Jay Sears) and Lincoln J in his wake to make his racing debut a winning one. Speaking of the win, Hennessey said, “this is one instance where time means nothing as long as you get to the winner’s circle.” TWO YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE-LAURIE LEE Laurie Lee, named after one of Florida’s most successful breeders, made a sharp quarter (:30) move to the top under the guidance of Wally Hennessey and went on to post panels of 1:00.3 and 1:30.4 before romping home in :28.2 to break her maiden in 1:59.1--her margin 3 1/4 lengths over Alil Touch of Pink (Marc Major) and Pocahontas Cam (Bryce Fenn) just another nose back in third. Gold Star Igotdis made a miscue three-eighths from home but did pick up the final check in this quartet. This daughter of Royal Millenium is trained by Kim Sears for Richard Dunmire and Jay Sears and registered her initial win in four career starts. TWO YEAR-OLD COLT/GELDING PACE-HURRIKANEKINGJAMES Hurrikanekingjames, already the author of a 1:55.1 over the Saratoga half-miler, had an easy task for Carl Garofalo, scoring by 15 1/2 lengths over Shuldahadahunemonn (Nick Coblentz). The slick So Surreal colt, owned by Jonathan Klee Racing, Kuhen Racing, Pegasis Investment Group and George Vierno, repelled a quarter bid (:30) with a :28.1 second panel and then coasted rest of the journey to a 1:58.2 win. Now in the Lorenzo Stable and trained by Michile Lorenzo, Hurrikanekingjames now has a bankroll of over $53,000 in his 10 lifetime starts. THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY TROT-KERRY B Kerry B, handled by Wally Hennessey, stalked her only rival, Crown Bushy (Bryce Fenn), through panels of :30.2, 1:01 and 1:31 before tilting out of her cozy pocket turning for home and went on to score her first win of the year in 2:00.3. The daughter of Muscle Mass, trained by Kim Sears for husband Jay, was clocked in : 29.2 coming home to push her lifetime bounty over $53,000. After the event, Hennessey remarked, “She seems to like her surroundings here at Pompano Park much better than up north. She was relaxed all the way and strong when I asked.” THREE YEAR-OLD TROTTING COLTS/GELDINGS-DAMIEN HALL With a trio of geldings going post-ward back of the Brownlee Starting Gate, Damien Hall trainer Jim McDonald got in the bike for the Pacing PrettyStable and guided the son of Cash Hall to a wire-to-wire win in a lifetime best 2:00.4--:28.4, eclipsing his former mark set last year by more than four seconds. Carding panels of :30, 1:01.2 and 1:32, Damien Hall left the pocket-sitter, Savin Park (Wally Hennessey) almost four lengths back at the wire. McGoldrick, with Ted Rau making his first purse start in the sulky since 2002, finished third and trotted his fastest career mile in doing so. THREE YEAR-OLD FILLY PACE-NATASHA Last years Super Night Champion, Natasha, driven by Wally Hennessey, made her first start as a sophomore and took charge an eighth into the mile, carded comfortable panels of :29.2, 58.4 and 1:28.2, and then sprinted home in :27.4 to score a handy win for trainer Kim Sears and owner Jay Sears in 1:56.1. The daughter of Six Of Diamonds scored by 3 1/2 lengths over the late charging Rockin Ellie (Bryce Fenn) with Gold Star Stormie (Walter Ross, Jr.) edging by Lime Twist for show honors. Natasha now has a lifetime scorecard reading 11-9-0-1, good for $70,675. “I let her do everything herself,” said Hennessey, “She was very, very sharp and I hope that bodes well for the rest of the season for her!” THREE YEAR-OLD COLT-GELDING PACE-ZAZA BOY Zaza Boy, driven by Carl Garofalo for trainer Michile Lorenzo, led every long stride of his mile and stopped the timer in a lifetime best 1:56.1--capped by a :28.2 finale. The gelded son of Rockincam popped off panels of:29, :59 and 1:27.4 before his romp home, defeating the late charging JB’s Boomerang (Bryce Fenn) by 1 1/2 lengths. Mister Marvalous (Wally Hennessey) in the pocket throughout the journey, was another neck back in third. The win gave Garofalo his driving double and provided trainer Michile Lorenzo with a similar accolade. Zaza Boy is owned by Souren Hovsepian along with Rod Lorenzo.  FSBOA’s Sunshine State Stakes resumes next Saturday morning. by John Berry, for Pompano Park and the FSBOA

Miss Flora (Corey Braden) takes the featured $11,000 open trot on closing night (September 21) at Tioga Downs. Beguin Dugoutier F (FernPaquet Jr.) was first to the first quarter in :27.2. Prarie Fortune (Jim Meittinis) took over and led to the half in :55.4. Campbellini (Wally Hennessey) was next to the front leading to three-quarters in 1:25.0. BJ Lorado (Michael Merton) had the lead at the top of the stretch. Miss Flora ($17.20), who is owned and trained by Mario Dessureault, blew right by to win in 1:54.4. Beguin Dugoutier F finished second. BJ Lorado was third best. Miss Flora is a 7-year-old mare by SJ's Caviar. It was her seventh win this season. She now has 28 career victories. Aaron Byron drove four winners on closing night. He combined for three of those wins with trainer Jeff Byron. They got wins with Big Bad Bill (17.40), Neat ($6.60), and Andreios Kardia ($17.40). His other win came with Jett Star ($3.10). Wally Hennessey is top driver of 2019 with 136 wins. Mike Merton was second best with 77 trips to the winner's circle. Mike Simons (54), Jim Taggart Jr. (44), and Fern Paquet Jr. (43), round out the top five.                                                                                                     --Fred Brown photo Mike Deters wins the training title with 42 victories. Joe Skowyra was second with 37 tallies. Patti Harmon used 34 wins to be third. Rick Dane Jr. (28) was fourth with Gary Messenger (27) was fifth best. Prairie Fortune is top trotter with six wins in 13 starts at Tioga. The 7-year-old gelding by Arapa Victory is owned by trainer Mike Deters and Laurie Poulin. Top pacer honors went to Americanprimetime with five wins in 12 starts at Tioga. The 7-year-old horse by American Ideal is owned by Rock And Roll Stable Inc, and trained by Rick Dane Jr. Truth And Liberty is the top mare pacer with nine wins in 15 starts at Tioga. The 7-year-old mare by Total Truth is owned by Fairy Horsemother Stables and trained by Mike Simons Kim Wahila wins the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback in the horseplay car giveaway. Tioga Downs wants to thank all horsemen and fans on a very successful season. Fireworks followed the last night of racing. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Truth And Liberty (Mike Simons) captured the $11,000 featured fillies & mares harness racing open pace at Tioga Downs on Friday (September 20). It was also another great night for driver Wally Hennessey, who led all drivers with five winners on the night. Truth And Liberty ($3.80) went to the front and led to the first quarter in :26.4. She put up a :28.4 second quarter to hit the half in :55.3. She continued to control the pace as they hit three quarters in 1:23.4. Truth And Liberty, who is owned by Fairy Horsemother and trained by Mike Simons, led by three lengths as they made the turn for home. Gigi From Figi (Wally Hennessey) tried to come late but Truth And Liberty was too strong and won in 1:52.3. Gigi From Figi had to settle for second with K J's Caroline (Jim Taggert Jr.) getting third money. Truth And Liberty is a 7-year-old mare by Total Truth. It was her 10th win this season. She now owns 45 career victories. Leading driver Wally Hennessey continued his dream season with five wins on the evening. He got his wins with Unimpeachable ($12.80), Cinnabar Hall ($6.40), The Big Muscle ($4.00), Rollingndiamonds ($4.10), and Here We Go Again ($4.50). Mike Simons drove three winners on the evening. He got his other victories with Meadowbranch Vicki ($2.60), and Soho Hanover ($2.70). It will be closing night at Tioga Downs on Saturday (September 21) with an 11 race card starting at 6:15 p.m. Fireworks follows live racing. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com. by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

It is no surprise to find Wally Hennessey winning a high rate of races in upstate New York during the summer. The Hall of Fame driver, who spends the non-summer months at Florida's Pompano Park, has enjoyed countless years of success at Saratoga's harness racing track going back to the late 1980s. This year, though, Hennessey has spent the summer competing at Tioga Downs. He decided the change would benefit the handful of trotters in his stable, the majority of which he thought would perform better on Tioga's five-eighths-mile oval compared to Saratoga's half-mile circuit. As it turned out, Hennessey's horses did not thrive at Tioga. But Hennessey did. With two nights of racing remaining in the 58-day Tioga Downs meet, Hennessey sits comfortably atop the driver standings with 131 wins. The total is a record for the track, which opened in 2006, shattering the previous high of 91 shared by Jim Marohn Jr. (2014) and Howard Parker (2007). Hennessey's win rate at Tioga is nearly 28 percent. "My main reason for going wasn't that I was thinking I was going to be the leading driver," Hennessey said. "My reason was because of my stable. As it turned out, I didn't do as well as I expected to do with my own stable and I did way better than I expected to do driving. So, you never know." Over the past 10 years, Hennessey won nearly 900 races during his summer sojourns in Saratoga, so it was not an easy decision to change his routine. "I love Saratoga, I love the town, I love the people there," said Hennessey, who turns 63 on Oct. 4. "I've seen kids raised and families and I've known people a long time. But this is a business, and this was a business decision. It wasn't something I was doing with my heart. I was doing it with my head. "When you're making a change, especially at my age, the older you get, the harder it is to do. There is always that unknown. But it couldn't have worked any better. I met so many nice people, and I think in life that's quite a thing too, that you're able to meet new people. "The people were so friendly and respectful. That's kind of the way I was raised on Prince Edward Island. They remind me of the same type people. I enjoyed it. I don't know where I'm going next year, but if that's my choice, I wouldn't be second-guessing it." Hennessey, whose decision to race at Tioga was made easier knowing that a number of horsemen from Pompano spent the summer there, graded his experience an "A-plus." He will drive the final two nights at Tioga Downs and then return to Florida and get ready for the Pompano Park meet, which begins Nov. 3. He will use October to get his stable ready for action after turning out his trotters three weeks ago. "My horses were just fair," said Hennessey, who has won the past four driving titles at Pompano. "Good isn't good enough for me, I have high expectations. My horses didn't race that great. I'm not sugar-coating nothing. They were not near as good as I thought they should be. I shut them down to refresh them for Pompano. "I won't be doing any driving (until Pompano resumes), and I need that as well, mentally and physically," he added. "But I'm very happy." by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA     

Gigi From Fiji easily captures the $11,000 fillies & mares open 1 at Tioga Downs on Friday (August 30). K J's Caroline (Jim Taggart Jr.) led to the first quarter in :26.3. Gigi From Fiji ($4.10) took control as they went by the stands for the first time. She led to the half in :55.2 and to three-quarters in 1:22.4. Gigi From Fiji, driven by Wally Hennessey, is owned by trainer Mike Deters along with L Barnett, J Warner, and J Spindler, found another gear as they reached the stretch. She would win going away with a seasonal best time of 1:51.1. Persistent Better (Jim Meittinis) came up to finish second. K J's Caroline was third best. Gigi From Fiji is a 5-year-old mare by Ponder. It was her eighth win this season. She now owns 17 career victories. Wally Hennessey drove four winners on the night. His other wins came with Check Mach ($3.10), Odds On Cheddar ($5.10), and Tap Tap Tap ($4.90). Hennessey has a commanding lead for the 2019 top driver at Tioga Downs. With just eight live racing dates left he has 112 wins. Last year's drivers champion Mike Merton is second with 66 tallies. Mike Simons is in third with 40 wins. Fern Paquet Jr is fourth with 33 trips to the winner's circle. The trainers title is still wide open. Mike Deters leads with 36 victories. Joe Skowyra is right on his heels with 34 wins. Patti Harmon is in third with 30 triumphs so far this season. Rick Dane Jr (27) and Jim McDonald (23) round out the top five. There will be no live racing on Saturday (August 31) due to the Smash Mouth concert. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Sunday (September 1) with an 11 race card starting at 1 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns .com . by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Wally Hennessey driove five harness racing winners including the $12,000 Open Handicap Pace at Tioga Downs on Sunday (August 4). In the feature, Rebellious (Mike Merton) went to the front and put in a fast first quarter of :25.4. Americanprimetime ($5.10) followed in second with Funknwaffles (Gates Brunet) in the third position. Rebellious slowed things down a little with a :28.3 second quarter hitting the half in :53.4. Americanprimetime would make his move going first-over with three-eighths of a mile left. Rebellious still led to three-quarters in 1:21.2. Americanprimetime, who is owned by Rock&Roll Stable Inc. and trained by Rick Dane Jr., charged to the front as they reached the stretch. Americanprimetime found another gear and breezed in the stretch to equal his seasonal best in 1:50.0. Rebellious held on for second. Funknwaffles finished third. Americanprimetime is a 7-year-old horse by American Ideal. It was his eighth win this season. He now has won 36 times in his career. Hennessey's other wins came with Thatsjusthowiroll ($7.90), Lily Hammer ($6.10), Miss Real Deal ($5.90), and Hugh Hefner N ($3.20). Joe Skowyra trained four winners on the day. He combined with Hennessey to win with Hugh Hefner N. His other wins came with Mr Big Bucks ($2.30), Freak On A Leash ($4.20), and The Spy ($15.40). Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (August 9) with an 11 race card starting at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com by John Horne, for Tioga Downs

Rebellious (Tyler Buter) captures the featured harness racing Open Handicap Pace ($12,000) at Tioga Downs on Sunday (June 2). Rebellious ($4.90) took the lead before hitting the first quarter in :26.3.  He continued to control the pace hitting the half in :55.2 and three-quarters in 1:23.3. Rebellious, who is owned by Joel Warner and trainer Mike Deters, was joined in the stretch by Ideal Feeling (Wally Hennessey).  The two would battle all the way down the stretch.  Ideal Feeling came hard but Rebellious dug in and held on to win in 1:52.1.  Ideal Feeling had to settle for second.  Rockntouch (Mike Simons) finished third. Rebellious is a 5-year-old gelding by Mach Three.  It was his fourth win of 2019.  He now has 23 career victories. Tyler Buter drove three winners on the day.  He teamed up again with trainer Mike Deters getting a win with Hulking ($18.60).  His other win came with Tangled Mind ($28.60). There is no racing at Tioga Downs on Friday (June 7) because of the Chubby Checker concert.  Live racing returns on Saturday (June 8) starting at 6:15 p.m.  There will be afternoon racing on both Sunday (June 9) and Monday (June 10) with a post time of 1 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com.   John Horne for Tioga Downs.

Americanprimetime (Drew Monti) charges late to capture the featured harness racing Open Handicap Pace ($12,000) on Sunday (May 26). Dakota Jack (Mike Simons) went to lead just before hitting the first quarter in :26.3. Ideal Feeling (Wally Hennessey) took over as they went by the stands for the first time and led to the half of :54.4. and three-quarters in 1:22.1. Americanprimetime ($16.60), who is owned by the Rock&Roll Stable and trained by Rick Dane, went second-over on the back stretch. He then made a three-wide move going around the final turn. He took over in mid-stretch and survived a late rush by second place finisher Prairie Panther (Jim Taggart Jr.) to win in a seasonal best of 1:50.2. Ideal Feeling held for third. Americanprimetime is a 7-year-old horse by American Ideal. It was his fourth win this season. He now owns 32 career victories. Drew Monti and Andy Santeramo each drove three winners on the day. Monti got his others wins with Weekend Atnannies ($9.30) and Freak On A Leash ($7.60). Santeramo reached the winner's circle with Stick With Cramer ($16.60), Rozewood ($12.80), and Rock Icon ($5.20). Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (May 31) with a post time of 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com   John Horne for Tioga Downs.

Wally Hennessey drives five winners at Tioga Downs on Saturday (May 25). Hennessey got his wins with Groovey Kid ($4.90), Crazy Every Time ($2.60), Itsnoproblemman ($2.10), Soho Hanover ($3.90), and Music Is Art ($2.30). Freddie Mac (Mike Merton) wins featured trot ($12,000). Dragin The Wagon (Aaron Byron) carved out all the early fractions (:27.1, :56.3, 1:24.4). Freddie Mac ($5.20), who is trained by Patti Harmon for the ADV Racing Stable LLC., sat in the pocket all the way until the stretch. He would pop out and go right by to win in 1:54.0. Dragin The Wagon held on for second. Boli (Wally Hennesey) finished third. Freddie Mac is a 5-year-old horse by Cornaro Dasolo. It was win number four in 2019. He now has 14 career victories. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Sunday (May 26) with a 10 race card starting at a special post time of 6:15 p.m. There is an umbrella giveaway while supplies last. Fireworks follows live racing. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com   John Horne for Tioga Downs.

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