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YONKERS, NY, Friday, July 13, 2018-Odds-on Newborn Sassy (Jordan Stratton, $3.80) was rebuffed early and rallied late Friday night (July 13th), winning Yonkers Raceway's non-superstitious $44,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. Alertly away from post position No. 4, Newborn Sassy sat an early pocket behind Medusa (Dan Dube). The fave tried to move past, but Medusa wasn't up for such largesse. That one laid down the legwork (:26.4, :56) before Magic Forces (George Brennan) made her second move. The rock-solid lass, who made a three-hole from her assigned eight-hole, did not offer her usual oomph and soon backed away. Medusa maintained her advantage in and out of a 1:23.3 three-quarters, owning a length-and-a-half lead in the lane. Newborn Sassy, though, never out of reach, edged out and edged by. She whipped a second-over Tequila Monday (Eric Goodell) by a diminishing head in 1:51.3. Medusa did hold third, with Freakonomics (Mark MacDonald) and Lispatty (Joe Bongiorno) settling for the minors. Magic Forces wound up last among the octet. For Newborn Sassy, a 5-year-old daughter of Western Ideal owned by Jo Ann Looney-King & CC Racing and trained by Jim King Jr, it was her fifth win in in 21 seasonal start (career earnings now over $917,000). The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $10, the triple returned $36.80 and the superfecta paid $212. Saturday night's (July 14th) feature is the $100,000 Lawrence B. Sheppard Pace, the Raceway's premier 'open' event for 2-year-old colts and geldings. by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway

Columbus, OH - It was Queen Of The Pride who turned in the fastest (1:54) of a quartet of $40,000 Ohio Sires Stakes for 2-year-old harness racing pacing fillies, on a cool July 6 evening at Scioto Downs. Driven by Tony Hall for trainer Kevin Lare and owner Frank Chick of Harrington, DE, the McArdle lass was never headed throughout the one-mile test, and upped her career earnings to $26,500 with her second career triumph. Rose Run Uptowngal, at 3-5, was second for Chris Page, while Sugar And Spite, an 85-1 longshot, finished third in rein to Ronnie Wrenn, Jr., in the fourth OSS division. Sent off at odds of 7-2, Queen Of The Pride had previously won a $13,000 baby race at Pocono Downs in 1:56 on June 26. Bred by Brad Wallace, this speedy lass is the fourth foal out of the Western Ideal mare Lionness Hanover p, 2, 1:53M ($21,280), and has half-siblings in Roaring To Go (by Art Major) p, 2, 1:50.4 ($421,999); Well Lets See (by Well Said) p, 4, 1:54.4h ($88,782) and Well Excuuuse Me (by Well Said) p,4,1:53f ($76,035). In the third OSS division, Twinsburg used similar tactics as Queen Of The Pride to prevail for Anthony MacDonald in 1:54.4 as the public's even-money favorite, over 6-1 rival Pappy Rocks (Chris Lems). Mach The Rock with Jeremy Smith aboard finished third at 9-1. A daughter of McArdle, Twinsburg is trained by Jason McGinnis for Brock Obrien, and now has $21,260 in her coffers. She won a Woodbine qualifier on June 9 in 2:00.4 before finishing third in 1:54.4 in a $10,500 Woodbine baby race on June 25. Twinsburg is out of the Life Sign mare Fastidious Hanover p, 4, 1:54M ($24,286) and is a half-sister to Right Right (by Cole Muffler) p,3, 1:52.4 ($497,370); Sunken Treasure (by Somebeachsomewhere) p, 3, 1:52f ($121,330) and Someonesomewhere (by Somebeachsomewhere) p, 3, 1:56.4h ($11,538). Bred by Steve Stewart and John Carver, Twinsburg was a $12,000 purchase at the Ohio Select Yearling Sale last fall. Lofty Beach captured the first OSS test in a snappy 1:55 for driver Aaron Merriman. The 4-5 favorite was a wire-to-wire winner for her driver and trainer Scott McEney, and an enthusiastic crowd greeted them in the Scioto Downs winners circle, for owner Bradley Grant, of Ontario, Canada. Mi Nina Bonita and Ronnie Wrenn, Jr., were second at 9-1, while Pink Dragon, at 7-1 was third for Dan Noble. Lofty Beach is the seventh foal out of the Western Hanover mare Lofty Yankee (p, $920), making her a half-sister to: Shadow Moon (by Shadow Play) 2, 1:51.4s ($165,444); and Ontario Blue Chip (by Shadow Play) p,4,1:56.4h ($34,977), among others. Finally, in the second OSS division, Carmen Ohio overcame the dreaded eight-hole to win handily in 1:55.2. Steered by Ryan Stahl for trainer Brian Brown, the daughter by The Panderosa went off at 3-1 odds, besting 9-2 High Reward (Ronnie Wrenn, Jr.) in another gate-to-wire effort by a length, with Bad Sammie (Chris Page) back in third. Owned by Milton Leeman (also the breeder), along with S. Manning, B. Meizlish and W. Calvert, Carmen Ohio is out of the unraced Dragon Again mare Hufflepuff, and on June 27 won a Scioto Downs maiden in a front-stepping 1:57.1. She is a full sister to Slick Mick p,3,1:51.4f ($106,040) and has half-siblings in: Hannah Abbott (by Dave Panlone) p,3, 1:53s ($86,502); Buckeye Battle Cry (by Woodstock) 3, 1:56f ($23,297) and Olympe Maxime (by Real Desire) p,4,1:56f ($ Ohio Sires Stakes action continues tonight at Northfield Park with 3-year-old colt pacers going postward in a pair of races featuring purses of $50,000 each. by Kimberly Rinker, OSDF Administrator

Western Toro (Jimmy Whittemore) captured the Vernon Downs featured pace ($3,500) on Wednesday (July 4). Gingertreefinnegan (John MacDonald) took over just before the first quarter and controlled all the early fractions (:26.4, :56.2, 1:25.4). Western Toro ($20.00) made his move going first-over from third place heading for the three-quarter pole. Owned and trained by Robert Gale, he hit another gear and blew right by to easily win in 1:53.4. Release The Terror (Roman Lopez) fired late to finish second. Prince Aland (Truman Gale) was third best. Western Toro is a 9-year-old gelding by Western Ideal. It was his first win this season and career victory number 15. Dan Daley won a driving double with Muscle Up Hazel ($5.80) and Pegasus Point ($7.80). Driver John MacDonald and trainer Misty Carey combined to win a double as well. They got their wins with Sharkbite Mike ($3.10) and Big Game ($3.00). The large crowd was entertained to a large display of fireworks after racing. Vernon Downs returns to live racing on Friday (July 6) with a nine race card starting at 6:10 p.m. For more information go to www.vernondowns.com by John Horne, for Vernon Downs  

Western Redhot (Leon Bailey) fired late to take the Vernon Downs featured pace ($6,000) on Saturday (June 23). Bailey and John MacDonald each won four races on the night. Dark Prince (Adam Capizzano) put up the first two fractions (:26.2, :56.2). Prince Aland (Truman Gale) took over leading the group to three-quarters in 1:25.1. Western Redhot ($22.80) , who is owned and trained by Dustin Ingraham, flew down the stretch and blew right by to win easily in 1:54.0. Prince Aland was second with Gingertreefinnegan (John MacDonald) finishing third. Western Redhot is a 5-year-old gelding by Western Ideal. It was his second win this season and his seventh career victory. Bailey also had wins with Credit List ($6.90), Royal Bahama ($8.20), and Sports Vision ($23.00). John MacDonald had wins with Dunks Brother ($24.00), Mac's Black Hat ($7.90), Maradona ($4.60), and Sapient Hanover ($2.20) A correction from Friday's racing. MacDonald had five wins instead of four. His last win last night came with Jaclyn Hanover ($2.20). That makes nine wins for MacDonald the weekend at Vernon Downs. Maradona (John MacDonald) holds off Prince Pinang to win the Vernon Downs featured pace ($6,000) on Saturday (June 23).  MacDonald and Leon Bailey each won four races on the night. Golden Brit (Adam Capizzano) led to the first quarter in :27.2. Maradona ($4.60) who is owned by Victor Finnocchiaro and trained by MacDonald , took control after the first quarter putting up the rest of the fractions (:57.1, 1:25.2, 1:53.2).  He would battle second place finisher, Prince Pinang (Artie Dick) all the way down the stretch.  Finishing third was Golden Brit.     Maradona is an 8-year-old gelding by Western Terror.  It was his fourth win this season and career win number 22.   MacDonald had his other wins with Dunks Brother ($24.00), Mac's Black Hat ($7.90), and Sapient Hanover ($2.20)   A correction from Friday's racing.  MacDonald had five wins instead of four.  His last win last night came with Jaclyn Hanover ($2.20).  That makes nine wins for MacDonald the weekend at Vernon Downs.    Bailey had wins with Credit List ($6.90), Royal Bahama ($8.20), Western Redhot ($22.80) and Sports Vision ($23.00).   Vernon Downs returns to live racing on Friday (6-29) starting at 6:10 p.m. For more information go to www.vernondowns.com by John Horne, for Vernon Downs

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It wasn't your typical Saturday night at the Meadowlands. In addition to the usual competitive 11-race program and simulcast of the C$1 million North America Cup from Woodbine Mohawk Park, the mile oval hosted something a bit unusual. The seventh-annual editions of the Ostrich Derby and Cameltonian were contested, much to the delight of the huge crowd that gathered on a beautiful evening. In the Ostrich Derby, Olive Petal had a strong late rally to record the win, Geisha had good foot from between rivals to get second, with Smooty's Poof settling for third. The Cameltonian saw I Got Patience get away well at the start and go on to an easy victory over Military Catman, Lord Clairol and Old Man Dan, who had a rough go of it at the start. WESTERN FAME TAKES FEATURE: After finishing second a week ago behind All Bets Off, who was establishing a national-season's record of 1:48, Western Fame appeared more than ready to win the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacers, which he did, in 1:49.1. Driver Andy McCarthy put the 5-year-old son of Western Ideal on the point just after the quarter and was then permitted to rate the middle half in :55.3 before sprinting home in :26.1 to win for trainer Jimmy Takter. Emeritus Maximus was a length back in second. Bettor's Edge finished third. As the 4-5 favorite, Western Fame paid $3.80 to win. A LITTLE MORE: One lucky player wagering into the Oregon hub was the only holder of a winning 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 ticket, and for surviving all 10 legs of the wager, he or she walked away with $13,953. ... McCarthy won three races on the program, while Vinny Ginsburg, Jim Marohn Jr. and Eric Abbatiello won two apiece. ... All-source wagering on the 11-race card totaled $1,764,225. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, upping the carryover to $258,907. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Friday at 7:15 p.m. by Dave Little, for the Meadowlands  

WILKES-BARRE PA - Four $15,000 events for the "rising younger set" were the features on a Tuesday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Both of the pacing events were restricted to males. In the first, Pembroke Joey proved most photogenic in a three-way picture as he lowered his mark to 1:53. Driver Tyler Buter got the Roll With Joe gelding into the pocket, then sat a two-hole trip behind pacesetting His Excellence. In a long stretch battle, Pembroke Joey used the Pocono Pike and got a nose up very late; the same margin separated second-place His Excellence over David Himself, who gained ground inside the winner and just missed taking it all deep in the Pike. Mark Ford conditions the winner and co-owns him with Bill Varney. The second pacing event's contentiousness was reflected in the fact that the favorite in the eight-horse field was 7-2, and the finish was also close, with three in the picture at the wire. Taking the major portion of the purse was the Western Ideal gelding Winston, equaling his mark of 1:52.1 for driver Tom Jackson, trainer John Butenschoen and Crawford Farms Racing. Jackson worked out a pocket trip with the winner, took the lead in the Pocono Pike midstretch, then withstood a hard-charging Terror Atthe Beach by a nose, with first-over Instructor only a neck off the top two. One of the trotting headliners saw the Federal Flex mare Passthecrownaround go a big mile on the engine after two early moves, ringing up a new mark of 1:55.4. George Napolitano Jr. kept his charge on the bit throughout, and the pair was 1¾ lengths clear on the money for trainer Mike Watson and owner Clifford Grundy. In the second trot, sister-in-law and brother-in-law trainers were 1-2, as the Cantab Hall gelding Haveitalltogether, trained by Julie Miller, caught the Erv Miller pupil Keystone Apache to win going away while tying his lifetime best of 1:55.1. Driver Eric Carlson, who had three wins on the night, kept Haveitalltogether well-placed throughout the mile, and he was strongest to the line for the Pinske Stable, the Andy Miller Stable Inc., Kentuckiana Racing Stable, and Eddie Gran. Top event for the older set was a $14,000 pace for mares, taken by the Always A Virgin mare Itty Bitty, who equaled her lifetime mark of 1:51.1. Driver Simon Allard got the winner of $126,367 away nicely from post eight to tuck third, pulled her out at headstretch, and took the measure of pacesetting Juxta Cowgirl by a neck for trainer Andrew Harris and owners Evan Katz, J. Robert Darrow, and A Harris Racing LLC. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

The Living Horse Hall of Fame nominating committee of the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame has announced the results of recent balloting to determine the 2018 inductees into the Harness Racing Living Horse Hall of Fame. Annual members voted for the two horses they felt best exemplified greatness. Their choices are stallions Cantab Hall and Western Ideal. The other nominees were Chapter Seven, Mister Big and Presidential Ball. Cantab Hall and Western Ideal will be inducted on Hall of Fame Day, Sunday, July 1st, 2018. The ceremonies honoring these extraordinary Standardbred horses will take place during the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame's annual dinner. For information on the Hall of Fame weekend and other festivities surrounding this important occasion visit www.harnessmuseum.com from April 2018 onward or call or write the Museum at 240 Main Street, Goshen, NY 10924. Phone: 845-294-6330. Standardbreds are only eligible for nomination to harness racing's highest accolade if they comply with the following strict criteria: They must be retired from racing for five years and had a drug-free career. In addition, racehorses must have won 75% of their lifetime starts, or gone undefeated in a single season campaign of 12 or more races, or been the winner of $3 million lifetime or named Harness Horse of the Year (US and/or Canada). Stallions must rank among the 10 all-time leading money-winning sires at their gait or have sired at least 100 $200,000 winners or been a leading money-winning sire at his gait in three or more seasons. Broodmares are no longer automatically elected. CANTAB HALL (Nominated as Stallion) 3,1:54 ($1,442,303) Bay Horse, 2001 (Self Possessed - Canland Hall - Garland Lobell) As a two-year-old in 2003, Cantab Hall won all 10 of his starts, earning $461,337, and was voted Dan Patch Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year and Trotter of the Year. Major victories included the Breeders Crown, American-National, International Stallion Stakes and the Bluegrass. In his sophomore season, Cantab Hall finished on the board in 11 of 13 starts while earning $980,966. His major victory came in his second American-National win. As a stallion, Cantab Hall was the leading sire at his gait for 3 consecutive years (2012-2014), as well as in 2016 and 2017. He has sired winners of over $73 million to date, including 8 millionaires, with 204 $100,000 winners and 138 in 1:55. His most successful offspring include 2013 Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old and 2014 Dan Patch Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year, world champion Father Patrick 3,1:50.2f ($2,558,133), winner of the 2013 Breeders Crown, Wellwood Memorial and Peter Haughton Memorial, and the 2014 Canadian Trotting Classic, Breeders Crown, Beal Memorial, Zweig Memorial and Stanley Dancer Memorial; world champion Wild Honey 3,1:50.4 ($1,589,235), winner of the 2015 Breeders Crown, Hambletonian Oaks, PA Sire Stakes Final and Kentucky Filly Futurity; and world champion Explosive Matter 3,1:52.3 ($1,510,542), winner of the 2008 Matron Stakes and the 2009 Colonial and Bluegrass. As a broodmare sire, Cantab Hall has sired the dams of winners of over $15 million to date, with two millionaires, Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year and world champion, Southwind Frank 3,1:52.1 ($1,950,887), winner of the 2015 Breeders Crown, Peter Haughton Memorial and William Wellwood Memorial, and the 2016 Colonial and Earl Beal Jr. Memorial; and 2016 Dan Patch and O'Brien Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year Ariana G 3,1:51.1 ($1,867,657), winner of the 2016 and 2017 Breeders Crown and 2017 Hambletonian Oaks. WESTERN IDEAL (Nominated as Stallion) p,5,1:48 ($1,455,422) Bay Horse, 1995 (Western Hanover - Leah Almahurst - Abercrombie) World champion pacer Western Ideal raced in 1997, 1999 and 2000. As a five-year-old in 2000, Western Ideal had his career season, winning the Breeders Crown, William R. Haughton Memorial, Canadian Pacing Derby and the Graduate Series. In his Breeders Crown victory, Western Ideal set a new world record 1:48 for five-year-old and older Standardbreds on a mile track. He was voted 2000 Dan Patch Older Pacing Horse of the Year. As a stallion, Western Ideal has sired winners of over $121 million, with 187 $200,000 winners and 12 millionaires to date. They include 2005 Horse of the Year and Hall of Fame Immortal Rocknroll Hanover p,3,1:48.3 ($2,754,038); 2009 Adios winner and world champion Vintage Master p,4,1:48.1f ($2,160,953); 2010 Matron Stakes winner and world champion Krispy Apple p,6,1:48.4f ($1,905,676); 2005 Woodrow Wilson winner Western Ace p,4,1:48.4 ($1,891,133); New Jersey Sire Stakes star Dial Or Nodial p,5,1:48.3f ($1,752,815); 2014 Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year Artspeak p,3,1:47.4 ($1,625,869); and 2010 Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year and world champion Big Jim p,2,1:49.1s ($1,541,924). As a broodmare sire, Western Ideal has sired the dams of winners of over $54 million to date, with 5 millionaires: 2014 Dan Patch and O'Brien Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year, world champion McWicked p,3,1:47.3f ($2,235,762); 2015 Canadian Pacing Derby winner, O'Brien Horse of the Year and world champion State Treasurer p,6,1:47 ($1,908,424); 2010 Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year, 2011 Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year and world champion See You At Peelers p,3,1:49.2f ($1,573,260); 2017 North America Cup winner Fear The Dragon p,3,1:48.4s ($1,492,782); and 2015 O'Brien Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year Solar Sister p,4,1:49.4f ($1,012,209). Janet Terhune

YONKERS, N.Y. – Last summer, talented harness racing pacer Western Hill showed promise of becoming a top stakes 3-year-old. The Tony Alagna trainee finished second in his North American Cup elimination June 10 and fifth in the final the following week. After failing to make the Meadowlands Pace Final, the son of Western Ideal again finished second in an elimination of the Adios and earned a fourth-place check in the final. Despite the potential he showed, Western Hill fell out of form in the fall and began to toil in the conditions at Yonkers. After two seventh-place finishes at the non-winners of 8 level in November, owner and breeder Tom Hill called trainer Andrew Harris. “When I worked for Casie Coleman back in the day, Tom had a lot of horses with Casie and so obviously I had known him well through them because I took care of Western Silk on and off when she had her,” Harris said. “Over the years, we’ve talked on many occasions and it seemed like they were going to give me an opportunity here or there, but nothing ever came to fruition until all the sudden this horse. They said, ‘we want to continue on as a 4-year-old with him, we just want to give him a shot.’ Who’s going to turn down a shot on a horse like that?” When Western Hill arrived, Harris saw a sharp-looking, speedy individual. However, it soon became clear the gelding had lost his confidence amid the string of losses and tough trips, which saw him try to close from well off the pace on Yonkers’ half-mile oval. “When I first got him, the first thing I noticed was, even though he was in a brand-new barn that he had never seen before, he got in the stall and put his head in the corner,” Harris recalled. “He was a little pouty and he just wasn’t happy. “We turned him out in the field every day with other horses and let him go out and be a horse a little bit,” he continued. “I know that Alagna likes to train a little bit harder than some, so I backed off on his training and didn’t train him as hard and just tried to freshen him up that way. Not that that would work on every horse, but it seemed to happen to work on this horse.” In his first start for Harris November 27, Western Hill drew post three and picked up top driver Yannick Gingras. After a pocket trip, Western Hill finished second by a nose in the $22,000 overnight. The following week, Gingras put Western Hill on the lead and the gelding scored a 1-length win in 1:53.2. “I think Yannick was a huge factor in bringing that confidence back because he put him onto the lead and he liked it,” Harris explained. “When you lose form, drivers don’t put them in play.” With his confidence and attitude improving off two good races, Harris took Western Hill to Harrah’s Philadelphia December 17, and the gelding posted a blowout win. He again set the pace and opened a 6¼-length advantage in the stretch in a 1:51.3 mile. “When he went to Chester he was just in total command and looked like his old self where he was wanting to be a big horse. He’s not a big horse, but he wants to be a big horse,” Harris said. Off his impressive performances, Western Hill will get a shot against Open pacers tonight at Yonkers Raceway. An 8-1 longshot in the field of six, Western Hill will make his 4-year-old debut against the likes of 2-1 favorite Gokudo Hanover, who ended his 2017 season with a win in the local Open, as well as the runner-up and third-place finishers from that race, Killer Martini and Thisjetsabookin. Take It Back Terry, who won the Preferred Pace to close the season, returns in the Open as the 3-1 second choice and Shane Adam completes the lineup. The $40,000 feature is slated as race 6 on the 12-race program. “The group that he’s in with, I actually like this spot,” Harris said of the step up. “The horse on the rail of Scotty Di’s is a really nice horse (Gokudo Hanover). Hopefully we’ll sit close to that one and hopefully get a shot at him down the lane. He fits with that group.” Despite fitting the non-winners of $30,000 condition, Harris entered the Open ranks in hopes of facing his age group. With the 4-year-old Open failing to fill at this early point in the season, Harris was happy to take a shot in the aged ranks. “I did enter for the 4-year-old Open because I was hoping he could race against horses his own age. I thought that I’d have a clear advantage over them with how sharp he is right now,” Harris said. “The non-winners of 30, I think that’s as tough as the Open anyway. I knew he probably wouldn’t get handicapped the outside in the Open, he’d probably have a better shot at the inside where the non-winners of 30 is an open draw and he could have gotten the eight-hole.” Like his five rivals, Western Hill enters tonight’s Open Pace off a month layoff. Harris feels the time away from racing helped Western Hill’s soundness. “I didn’t really let him down. We jogged him all the way through and trained him up all the way through,” Harris said. “He’s fairly sound right now, so I think that way it helped him out a lot.” First post time at Yonkers is 6:50 p.m. To view entries for the races, click here. By Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

YONKERS, NY, Friday September 8, 2017- Odds-on Newborn Sassy (Jordan Stratton, $3.70) overcame seven harness racing rivals and a scattering Friday night (Sept. 8th), winning Yonkers Raceway's $50,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. Away fourth from post position No. 5, 'Sassy' watched as Jag Out (George Brennan) leave around Lovineveryminute (Brent Holland), paying a :26.4, first-quarter privilege for the lead. In the second turn, the latter was attempting to leapfrog past the former when the pair locked wheels. That unscheduled bit of loveliness caused all the ladies in behind to alter their routes, with any number either breaking and/or going wide and 59-1 longshot trailer Betabcool N (Greg Merton) leaving the course. After the discourse, Newborn Sassy-one of the those breakers-righted the ship and moved to the lead, with Betabcool N taking the very abbreviated way back to the oval and into the pocket. The half was a an incident-slowed :58.1, after which 'Sassy' finished it off (1:26.1, 1:54.3). The margin was a length-and-a-half into the lane and a length-and-three-quarters at the wire. Betabcool N was second, with Princess Fabulosa (Eric Goodell), HP Sissy (Brian Sears) and Acefourtyfour Alex (Joe Bongiorno) settling for the remainder. After a lengthy inquiry, the judges made no placements, deeming Betabcool N should not be penalized for shortening her trip to avoid the impediments in front of her. For Newborn Sassy, a 4-year-old daughter of Western Ideal co-owned by (trainer) Jim King Jr. CC Racing LLC, it was her sixth win in 10 seasonal starts (career 4-for-5 here, including last season's Lady Maud). The exacta paid $199, the triple returned $807 and the superfecta paid $17,433 (base $2 payout). Frank Drucker

TROIS RIVIERES, QUEBEC - Trevor Henry is a quick study, and that fact was the primary reason why he and the Western Ideal stallion Western Fame emerged victorious in the $200,000 Prix d'Ete for four-year-old pacers, the signature race at Hippodrome Trois-Rivieres (3R) in Quebec on Sunday. Henry said during the card that he had driven at 3R "only once before, years and years ago," but after the race he noted "I had been watching the starts here today, and the way the car goes it looked like a good spot for me to be leaving, from post five (the stats back his thinking up - 3R is a half-mile track, but posts four and five account for 39% of the winners). So I was thinking about leaving fast from the very start." Western Fame was of the same mind, and he and Henry made the lead before getting into the first turn. Awesomeness defended the pocket, so Roll Away Joe, looped leaving, was stuck outside nearing the 1/4, with Jody Jamieson, behind 1-5 favorite Sintra and starting from the rail (10% winners at 3R), doing his best to extricate himself from a tough situation by giving a tuck to "Joe," then backing out behind the still-parked-from-PP8 Dr J Hanover, just ahead of Lyons Snyder, just past the 27.1 quarter. Since a parked horse was "leading" the outer tier and not belligerently battling for command, Western Fame got a breather on the lead, reaching the half in a very pedestrian 56.3. With Sintra moving three-wide but failing to gain quickly, and Awesomeness in the pocket doing all he could to stay close, Western Fame was required to pace only a pair of 28.2 quarters home to stop the timer in 1:53.2, leaving Awesomeness 1 1/4 lengths behind and Roll Away Joe a further ¾ of a length back in third. Lyons Snyder had to rally four-deep to be along for fifth, ahead of final checkgetter Sintra, who just did not have his "A" game today. Western Fame, who has been there or thereabouts in many of the top races of his division at both three and four, is owned and was bred by the legendary Brittany Farms LLC, and is trained by Jimmy Takter, allowing Takter to combine with Ron Burke for a stranglehold on the Prix d'Ete trophy - Takter won the race that marked the revival of the stake in 2014, and Burke then took it the next two years. (More on this idea at the bottom.) "I wasn't sure how good a spot I was in coming off the third turn, because I knew Sintra would be coming up three-wide to challenge," Henry recounted. "But when we were heading towards the last turn and he was still out three-wide, I started to feel better about my chances." And Trevor Henry and Western Fame felt better and better about those chances the nearer they got to the wire. ****** There were $7500 divisions of Quebec-bred "Coupe de l'Avenir" contests for two-year-old pacers, colts and fillies each going in two sections - the babies' last chance to qualify for September 3's $480,000 day of Q-bred Championships for the eight divisions of two- and three-year-olds. The "Stock market" is certainly bullish at 3R right now, as the Sportsmaker colt Stock again turned in a dominant performance while winning in 1:55.4 as a shower started to pass quickly through. Stock opened his career with an Ontario Roots win, took a division of the opening leg of the Q series, then tried his luck at the Battle Of Waterloo, where he won an elimination before being undone by PP8 in the final. But he certainly bounced back with authority on Sunday, with only G A Speed Sammy able to stay anywhere close to the talented winner, who carried 77% of the win pool and 96% of the place pool. Stock is trained by Dany Fontaine for owner Sotirios Anastaspoulos and Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc. and 3R's leading driver, Stephane Brosseau. Driver Louis Philippe Roy can seemingly do no wrong at 3R - even when it looks like he may have, as it did at the half in the other colt section. Roy kept the pocket shut early with El Muchacho behind a speed duel, then was locked in when the outer tier formed nearing the half, with odds-on favorite Power Fog second-over and looking like a possible sweeper. But the horse who had been two-wide in the speed duel, Determinant, bore out going to the third turn and severely cramped the chances of the outer tier while also giving a clear road to El Muchacho and Louis Phillippe. The Goliath Bayama colt, given this second life, moved to the lead before the ¾ and won nicely for trainer Maguire and the owning partnership of the driver and Ecuries Maguire Inc. Their main concern, in relation to the Championship, was framed by the timer, which stopped at 2:01.1 - a new mark for El Muchacho, now a two-time series winner, but five seconds slower than the clocking posted by Stock. Hall of Famer Mike Lachance was the grand marshal for Prix d'Ete Day, so it seemed appropriate that his buddy from the "French Connection" days of success in the mid-Atlantic area in the 70s, Yves Filion, would be a winners circle visitor in a division of the filly competition, as he overcame post eight with Katniss S BG to win handily in 2:03.2. The daughter of Mach Three, out of a full sister to Wakizashi Hanover, certainly looked like a warrior leader on Sunday, limbed out to a 29.4 quarter on a wet track before taking the lead, rating the middle half as she pleased and then striding home much the best. Filion is the trainer/driver of the two-time series winner for owners Sylvain Descheneaux and Gaston Bibeau. (This race lost some luster when DGs Shadowbell, the only baby of either sex going 2 for 2 to start the series, was scratched; she now has two weeks to get back to her best for the Championship.) In the second cut for the misses, first-time Q-Series winner Lit De Rose thrust herself squarely into the main frame of Championship possibles with a victory in 1:59.1, a personal best. The daughter of Leader Bayama paid a very high price for the lead, being parked in 28.1 before getting the top, then had to keep the speed going - middle fractions of 57.1 and 1:27.1 were required to keep favored La Balafre hung out to dry, driver Dan Dube (a four-time winner on the day) determining that he wanted the front end with his filly. His strategy worked as the hot fractions burned everybody else out, and his filly could coast home well ahead of the opposition for trainer Maxime Velaye and breeder/owner Guy Corbeil. A pair of $8000 Invitationals was also scheduled on the big card, with the trot reuniting driver Louis Philippe Roy, trainer Kevin Maguire, and the winners circle via the twelve-year-old Conway Hall gelding Four Starz Speed, who was parked to a 28.2 quarter to get the lead but turned back all challenges from there in his 1:59 victory. The win was the 52nd of Four Starz Speed's career, which has seen him run up winnings of $831,887. Ecuries Maguire Inc. own the spry graybeard, who is indeed the horse who won his New York Sire Stakes final - in 2008, when he was three. On the pacing side, the day's popular theme of "take the punishment you must to the quarter, as long as you then can control the pace" (see d'Ete, Prix) was again played out, as Louis Philippe Roy reported home first for the fourth time on the day after he and Ufdragons Rocket came home all alone in 1:54.1. The favored Dragon Again gelding was out to a 27.3 quarter, then parked major danger Bali through middle splits of 56.3 and 1:25.2; from there, he could pull away for his 11th victory of the campaign. The winner of $336,513 is trained by Yves Tessier for owner Francois Morin. FINISHING LINES - The sire of Roll Away Joe, third in the Prix d'Ete, is Roll With Joe, whose name is on a FFA pace held annually at New York's Tioga Downs. This race was held a few hours before the Prix, and was won by Dealt A Winner - the only reason we mention it here is that the 2-3-4 finishers in the race were Rockin Ron, Sunfire Blue Chip, and All Bets Off, who won the 2016, 2014, and 2015 Prix d'Etes, respectively! ... Also, because Dealt A Winner, the longest shot on the board at Tioga, paid $72.50 - and it took Hippodrome 3R, with 11 favorites successful on its 15-race card, until the very last race to have its win mutuels combined reach that figure! (The biggest contributor? Western Fame at $14.80.) From the Quebec Jockey Club

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 7 - Summer Travel became North America's fastest two-year-old of the season with a dominating 1:50.3 harness racing performance in Monday's $39,800 Dream Maker Final at Mohawk Racetrack. The son of Western Ideal improved to three for three by putting on a show against five rivals in the series finale. Driven by Louis Philippe Roy, Summer Travel got away third in the early stages, while Trump That moved up to take the lead away from Albergo Hanover at the opening-quarter in :27.4. Summer Travel got his cue to go entering the backstretch and rushed to the lead, posting a half of :56.1. The Casie Coleman trainee proceeded to pace back-to-back :27.1 quarters to leave his rivals well behind and pull off a sensational 9¾ lengths victory in a stakes record 1:50.3. Trump That finished second, while Albergo Hanover was third. A $35,000 yearling purchase at Harrisburg, Summer Travel appears to be the next big star for his connections of West Wins Stable, Mac Nichol and Calhoun Racing Limited. "He's been impressive since day one," said Coleman. "He's really special. He shows a ton of speed. "I was worried about him, he's got a bit of a high stepping gait to him. I loved him as a yearling, but then when he had his gait I was a little bit worried about that, but it's obviously not slowing him down any." Coleman, who has trained many top colts, had high praise for where Summer Travel ranks at this point. "None of them had done what Summer Travel's done this early and he's doing it so easy, like you could see the plugs were in tonight. I've had a little bit of sickness, allergies that I've been battling with him and he's honestly not even 100 per cent yet, but I'm going to have him 100 per cent when it's time next month." Coleman confirmed that Summer Travel is being pointed towards the Grand Circuit events coming up at Mohawk, including the Nassagaweya, Champlain and Metro. Summer Travel paid $2.70 to win. Summer Travel While the Dream Maker Series concluded Monday, the Pure Ivory Series for two-year-old trotting fillies kicked off with a pair of $14,000 divisions. Conway Hall filly Shazamm was able to power by rivals in the stretch to win the first division in 1:58 for driver Chris Christoforou and trainer Renaldo Morales III. A $12,000 Harrisburg purchase, Shazamm was coming into Monday's start off a victory on July 31 at Ocean Downs in Maryland. The rookie trotting filly now has two wins in three starts and $16,775 earned for owner Dan Clements. Shazamm paid $14.90 to win. Shazamm Rick Zeron trainee Courtney Hanover broke through with a strong 1:56.3 winning performance in the second split. The daughter of Cantab Hall converted off a two-hole trip to break her maiden and post the nation's fastest two-year-old trotting mile of the season. Courtney Hanover, who had been racing in Pennsylvania Sires Stakes recently, was a $47,000 yearling purchase at Harrisburg and is now one for four with $10,500 banked for owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion, Bruno Dipoce and Howard Taylor. She paid $13.10 to win. Courtney Hanover The second leg of the Pure Ivory will take place next Monday (August 14). Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

WILKES-BARRE PA --- Luck Be Withyou has been in love with the red clay surface of The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono for going on four years now, and the harness racing six-year-old son of Western Ideal continues to show no sign of passing ardor, winning Saturday $25,000 winner-over handicap pace in 1:48.4, with the 2015 Franklin Final winner holding off the 2017 Franklin champion Keystone Velocity by a nose. George Napolitano Jr. hustled Luck Be Withyou away quickly from the outermost post seven (he and Keystone Velocity had shaken for the two outside starting spots), and with George's brother Anthony hustling Polak A away at high speed to grab the two-hole, Keystone Velocity was guided into third early by Simon Allard as Luck Be Withyou posted "leisurely" fractions of 26.3 and 55.1. The pace quickened to a 27 rate during quarter three (1:22.1) - then quickened even further in the last panel, with Luck Be Withyou stepping his last fraction in 26.3. Keystone Velocity, three lengths out at the stretch call, flew up the Pocono Pike (a la his win over Mel Mara in this year's Franklin), but this night's rally came up a nose shy, with Polak A a good third. The win was the 16th in the 25-start career of "Luck" at Pocono, which began when he won his Breeders Crown event here at two, and has continued to the point that he has taken his seasonal mark here all five of his racing years, including his 1:47.4 speed badge last year. Trained by Chris Oakes, Luck Be Withyou has now amassed $1,439,791 for owner John Craig, with his Pocono plunder alone approaching three-quarters of a million. You don't often associate North American leading trainer Ron Burke with the word "longshot," but Burke led the local conditioners colony here last year with four $50+ wins, and exactly 4 hours and 45 minutes after his Check Six posted a $77.00 upset in the Sam McKee Pace on Hambletonian Day, Mach On The Beach, another Burke trainee, crossed the wire first at Pocono to return $73.40. Two-year-old colt pacers take to the Downs' oval for the next two nights in the third preliminary leg of the Pennsylvania-sired series, with Stallion Series horses going in five cuts on Sunday and Sire Stakes stock, including the exciting Done Well, in three divisions Sunday. PHHA / Pocono

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - Do Over Hanover was in a league of his own in the Saturday evening harness racing preferred pace at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Mike McGuigan was in the bike for the fastest win of his career as Do Over Hanover controlled the front end at every call through fractions of 27.2, 55.1 and 1:24.1 en route to a 1:53.1 victory by six open lengths in the $2,400 preferred pace. Adkins Hanover (Kenny Arsenault) released Do Over Hanover to the lead past the quarter to sit second and finish second with Elm Grove Kaboom (Earl Smith) completing the healthy $218.20 triactor with race favorite Crombie A finishing seventh. It was the sixth win in a row for Do Over Hanover with Chris MacKay training the four-year-old son of Western Ideal for owners Red Isle Racing of North Granville, Steven MacRae of Vernon Bridge and Allard Racing Inc., of Saint-Esprit, Que. Dixie Lullaby found redemption on her native red soil in the $2,250 Open Mares pace with a 1:57.4 victory with Walter Cheverie in the bike for co-owner and trainer Kyle Fellows of Rockwood, Ont., and co-owner Carl Stafford of Conception Bay South, N.L. Good Luck Kathy (Jason Hughes) was second with Prettyndangerous (Adam Merner) third. Ken Murphy and Adam Merner both had driving triples on the card with Gilles Barrieau and Kenny Arsenault winning two races in the bike and trainer Ron Gass scoring a pair of victories. For complete results go to www.redshores.ca By Nicholas Oakes For Red Shores

YONKERS, N.Y. - Ideal Jimmy will continue his comeback in the $35,000 4-Year-Old Open Pace at Yonkers Raceway Saturday night. After making his return to the Hilltop Oval in the same class July 29, harness racing trainer Erv Miller thinks the gelded son of Western Ideal will be competitive in this week’s race. “He had a first start last week. Hopefully he’ll be in a little better shape and ready to go than he was last week, but normally I find at Yonkers it takes them a start or two before they’re really to go,” he said. “It depends on the horse and what he’s done in qualifiers. Normally we’re a little more conservative than we are aggressive the first start or two off the break.” Ideal Jimmy finished seventh in his return, which was his first start since winning a non-winners of eight at Yonkers December 5, 2016. He was beaten just 2 1/2 lengths after racing along the pylons and closing with a :28.1 final quarter. “I thought he raced really good. He just ended up coming up the inside and he wasn’t going to go anywhere because he didn’t get into the race early enough, but first start around there, I thought that was a good starting point,” Miller commented. Ideal Jimmy’s extended break from racing gave the small son of Western Ideal a chance to develop. Miller and owner D. R. Can Witzenburg plotted Ideal Jimmy’s 4-year-old campaign to serve as a transition to bigger targets next year. “We discussed this horse’s future last year to maybe not race him as a 4-year-old this year. I think sometime in March we brought him in,” Miller remembered. “He went through the non-winners of eight and he didn’t fit any more conditions, so we just gave him time to grow up and mature. He’s filled out, grown up. We don’t think he’ll quite compete against the open horses as a 4-year-old, but hopefully as a 5-year-old going forward he will. We’ll see how good he gets and hopefully be in the Levy next year.” Van Witzeburg is a longtime supporter of Miller and has the patience to give his horses time when needed. That makes Miller’s job easier. “I’ve trained for him a long time. He’s a really nice guy. He’s got great patience with horses and he understands the game. He knows they’re not robots and they don’t go when you say, ‘go,’ they go when they’re ready,” Miller said. “He’s been very patient that way with his horses. It’s really nice to have it that way and have it when they understand the horses a little bit.” Ideal Jimmy was a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes champion at 2. He’s 8-for-32 lifetime with another 10 seconds and thirds. He’s earned $443,722 and took a mark of 1:51.0 at the Meadows as a freshman. “He’s just been a really easy horse to get along with all along. He was a really nice 2-year-old. Not very big, just a small horse, which normally doesn’t work for PA because you have to race against the Somebeaches and stuff, but he’s always put his best foot forward and put out a good effort, so we just kept riding with him. He never did take a lot of work or anything. He was always a pretty easy horse to get along with,” Miller described. Ideal Jimmy will start from post position two in Saturday’s 4-Year-Old Open, just to the inside of morning line favorite Western Fame. The eight-horse field also includes 19-time winner St Lads Moonwalk and 10-time winner Blaise MM Hanover. “This week is a little tougher than last week with Western Fame in there,” Miller said. “I think Ideal Jimmy will be quite a bit better than last week just getting a race under his belt. He could be getting a little involved this week and be there at the finish. It helps to have the two hole. “I think it’s great with New York having the opportunities they do on a small track. I think a half-mile track should suit him pretty good,” the trainer continued. “He’ll get some races against 4-year-olds there instead of having to race against older horses. Hopefully he’ll monopolize off of that and have a good last half of the year.” by Brandon Valvo for the SOA of NY

WASHINGTON, PA, July 29, 2017 -- Dismissed at 56-1, Ella Christina poured through the Lightning Lane to pull off a harness racing shocker in Saturday's $125,950 Quinton Patterson Adioo Volo at The Meadows. Blazin Britches captured the other division of the Adioo Volo, a Grand Circuit stake for 3-year-old filly pacers that was part of the Adios Card. Ella Christina hadn't won a stake this year, and driver Jim Pantaleano had little chance to get her into the cover flow. "Going down the backstretch, I thought I might follow one of the favorites, but that spot disappeared and kind of made my decision for me," he said. "They weren't going much on the lead, so I figured they'd be getting home pretty good. I was surprised my filly had as much pace as she did. They were honking home pretty good." The daughter of Western Ideal-Arthroscopic was fourth and apparently going nowhere when the horse immediately in front of her, Glassine Hanover, tipped off the cones for the drive. That was the opportunity Ella Christina needed, and she took full advantage of it, downing Colorful Jasmine by 1/2 length in 1:52.2, matching her career best. Rosemary Rose was third. Nick Surick trains Ella Christina for Nick Surick Stable, J.L. Benson Stables, William Daggett, Jr. and Lawrence Vukovic. Ella Christina The freshman campaign of Blazin Britches was aborted after a single race due to soreness, but she won six of her first seven starts this year, racing primarily at Hoosier Park. Then, trainer Brian Brown thought he noticed something amiss in her recent outings. "We figure she bled her last three starts; luckily, we found it in time," Brown said. "She looked like she would win in 1:50, and she got halfway up the stretch and started to let up. As you saw today, she didn't give up." With the addition of Lasix for the Adioo Volo, Blazin Britches gobbled up the leader, Bettor's Up, with a backside burst and went on to defeat her by 2 lengths in 1:50.1, a career best. Brazuca earned show. Emerald Highlands Farm bred and owns Blazin Britches, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven-Soggy Britches who is eligible for most of the rich year-end stakes. Blazin Britches Other races on Adios day at the Meadows; Whatstroublnurocky by A Rocknroll Dance - Arden Downs 2yo C&G Pacers Broadway Concert by Broadway Hall - Arden Downs 3yo Filly Trotters Disorder by Somebeachsomewhere - Arden Downs 2yo C&G Pacers Snowstorm Hanover by Muscle Massive - Arden Downs 3yo C&G Trotters Reign On Me by Well Said - Arden Downs 2yo Filly Pacers Cult Icon by Bettor's Delight - Arden Downs 2yo Filly Pacers Crann Tara by Donato Hanover - Arden Downs 3yo Filly Trotters Dapper Dude by Ponder - The Meadows Preferred Hcp Pace The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

In The Clear (Chris Lems) rallies to take the Vernon Downs harness racing featured pace ($6,000) on Saturday Night (July 29). The big favorite Dreams Beachboy (John MacDonald) would take the early lead and hit the first quarter in :26.0. Big Game (Josh Kinney) would give a lot of lot of pressure forcing a :53.3 half. After they burned each other out, Skip Jive (Jimmy Whittemore) would take the lead hitting three-quarters in 1:22.0. In The Clear (Western Ideal), who is owned by Victor Finocchiaro and trained by Jordan Hope, would then go on by and take over at the top of the stretch and hold off the late charge of Tundra (Truman Gale) to win in 1:51.1. Tundra (Cam's Card Shark) would have to settle for second best. Skip Jive (Rock N Roll Heaven) was third. In The Clear ($8.90) would win for the fifth time this season and winning for the 17th time in his career with a lifetime best of 1:51.1. Vernon Downs returns to live racing with a nine race card on Thursday (August 3) at 6:45 p.m. For more information please go to www.vernondowns.com John Horne for Vernon Downs

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