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Chester, PA -- A mere three weeks away from mandatory retirement, Foiled Again ($2.20) withstood three strong challenges en route to a gritty 1:54.2 win -- the 108th of his career -- in Sunday's (Dec. 9) $10,000 Foiled Again Farewell Tour Invitational at Harrah's Philadelphia.   The richest pacer of all time and usual driver Yannick Gingras were tested from the outset by Cabbie's Delight (George Napolitano Jr.), but held their ground through a :27.4 first-quarter duel. After rating a comfortable :57 half, the 14-year-old son of Dragon Again faced first-over pressure from Machtu N (Brett Miller) up the far side of the course. Machtu N worked to within half a length of the lead past three-quarters in 1:25.4 before dismissing that challenger, only for Cabbie's Delight to re-emerge up the open stretch.   Driven out to the winning post, Foiled Again refused to lose, parrying Cabbie's Delight's inside challenge by a quarter length for his tenth seasonal score. Hypothetical (Tony Morgan) made late inroads to take third.   "There's tears every time I get to sit behind him, and it gets harder every time," said an emotional Gingras after the win over the same racetrack Foiled Again made a name for himself in 2008 with ten wins, eight of them against open competition.   "There's no doubt that he's helped me to get to where I'm at."   Trainer Ron Burke expressed similar sentiments of the veteran, whose farewell tour will wrap up on Dec. 31 at The Meadows.   It's really energized us as a barn and made us enjoy everything," Burke said about the tour before reminiscing about his star pacer's legacy.   "Probably at seven, he was better than everyone out there. All of a sudden, there wasn't anyone better, and he went for two or three years where he was the best horse in the country." In his 2011 campaign, Foiled Again won six $100,000 events en route to amassing well over $7.6 million in career earnings.   The Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and JJK Stables own Foiled Again, and have have campaigned him since acquiring him in July of 2008.   Live racing resumes at Harrah's Philadelphia on Wednesday (Dec. 12); first post is slated for 12:25 p.m.   by James Witherite, for Harrah's Philadelphia

A simple act of kindness by 29-year-old Watson Harrop Jnr from Durham in The North of England has become a major hit on harness racing social media both in the UK, Ireland and is spreading across the globe.   Harrop who is strongly involved in harness racing was passing the Food Bank in his local Tesco store.   "I noticed that the food bank never seemed to have a lot in it so off I went filled a trolley and saw it as a chance to do something for those less well off than myself," Harrop said.   "I knew the generosity of those involved in harness racing so I stuck up the video on Facebook nominating others to do the same . At first I thought it might get a few responses but to be honest it has ballooned and gone world wide.   "Harness Racing may be a minority sport here in the UK but people have connections worldwide and the biggest names in the sport on both sides of the Atlantic have got involved" added Harrop.   In the UK all the "faces" in the sport have come on board from top trainer Alexis Laidler to bookmaker Barry "Pinno"Pinnington, promoter Anthony Fettah and Mr Tir Prince Eric Witherspoon. ll The project has swept across the Irish Sea with leading reinsmen John "JR" Richardson ,Simon Duggan and Noel Ryan doing the challege along with Alan Wallace of the Newtown Stud and Derek Delaney from the Oakwood Stud. Leading Irish bookmaker Dan Carlin set a trend with a video well worth a view.   Next stop was the USA and Yannick Gringras Chris Oakes and Sean Bier were quickly off the mark to help.   It is hoped that the nominations will continue up to Christmas.   It is hoped that everyone will visit #foodbanknomination or Watson Harrop Jnr pages on Facebook and do a little to help those in need at Christmas.   by TIm Kelleher

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Saturday night, the place to be for an end of the year stakes-season sendoff spectacular card of harness racing is at the showcase of the sport, the Meadowlands. Speaking of sendoffs, Big M enthusiasts will also get to say goodbye to an all-time great as Foiled Again appears on the track one last time at the mile oval before meeting and greeting his faithful fans. Horse of the Year front-runner McWicked (TVG open pace) and the still-in-the-hunt Shartin N (TVG female pace) are the marquee names in two of six stakes events on the 13-race program, which gets underway at 7:15 p.m. Defending Horse of the Year Hannelore Hanover takes on Breeders Crown champion Emoticon Hanover in the TVG female trot while 3-year-olds Tactical Landing and Six Pack duke it out for divisional honors as they face off with older foes Marion Marauder and Cruzado Dela Noche in the TVG open trot. They'll also be 2-year-olds in action in the Three Diamonds for filly pacers (featuring Breeders Crown winner Warrawee Ubeaut), the Goldsmith Maid for filly trotters, the Governor's Cup for pacing colts and geldings (with BC champ Captain Crunch) and the Valley Victory for colt and gelding trotters. Harness insiders talk Foiled Again With the Meadowlands celebrating the five-year anniversary of the opening of its new grandstand, the great pacer Foiled Again, he of 106 career wins and $7.6 million in earnings, will be on the scene. Having won the much-hyped 2013 TVG open pace, he might be wondering why he isn't in Saturday night's TVG, but he will be racing on the card, leaving from post seven in the "Auld Land Syne", which is the third race on the program. After he cools down, racing fans are encouraged to come back to the Big M's 'Backyard' and meet Foiled, and to take pictures with a horse that history is sure to recognize as one of the greatest of all-time. There is also a commemorative Foiled Again poster giveaway, available at the Players Club Desk beginning at 6 p.m. The Meadowlands caught up with some harness racing experts, and this what they had to say about Foiled Again: Yannick Gingras, driver, Foiled Again: Foiled Again's and my careers took off at the same time and I can't help but think he was a huge part in taking me to the next level as a catch driver. His longevity, toughness, will to win and forgiveness of a tough trip is what made him so special. He was not the fastest horse I've ever driven but he will for sure be the toughest, gamest horse I will ever drive. The TVG meant so much that year with Captain(treacherous) being in it and all the hype around him plus Pet Rock, Sweet Lou and others. He was the old guy against a bunch of much-younger horses trying to take his spot. But in his true self, Foiled Again refused to lose and took it to all of them. (He held off Golden Receiver by a neck in 1:49.2.) His BC win that year to me is my favorite and is the perfect race to describe Foiled as he was sooooo game that night and he fought horses coming from everywhere, but the TVG is a very close second and it's a race I'll never forget (like many other of his races). I will be forever thankful for him and what he has done for my family but also to the sport in general. He was a breath of fresh air and the 'people's horse' in a sport that need many more feel-good stories like Foiled Again's. A true champion I will miss but never forget. Bob "Hollywood" Heyden, Meadowlands TV personality, handicapper and historian: I remember the 2013 TVG Pace well, the (new grandstand) had just opened. Foiled Again, whose 47 starts at the Meadowlands are the most he has at any one track, dug in as was his style, and held off a grandiose field. (Keep in mind that Sweet Lou came back in 2014 to dominate this event by a city block and then retired.) An amazingly durable horse was Foiled Again at the top level, which is unheard of. I recall this horse made $57,000 at 2 and 3 COMBINED! He had three straight $1 million seasons - when he 7, 8 and 9-years-old - and is $1,120 in front of McWicked going into this weekend as the richest 7-year-old in the history of the game as a pacer. I loved this horse, knowing how he gave his all each and every time and it didn't seem to matter where he was or who he was in with. The modern-day Rambling Willie, he ignored the calendar and has earned $7.6 million. For the last 75 months, he has been the richest pacer in harness history. The numbers could fill up a couple more pages. What a way to kick off the TVG than with Foiled Again in 2013! John Campbell, President and CEO, The Hambletonian Society: I was in the 2013 TVG (driving Modern Legend, who finished fifth), and Foiled Again was a very difficult horse to race against because he was so tough. That was a great race. There was a lot of build up with Captaintreacherous going in. It was one of many great races Foiled went. I think what's astounding is how he raced at that top level and won major free-for-all stakes for I don't know how many years. He's going to be in the conversation with almost everybody when we talk about our all-time greats because of his longevity and the level that he raced at. Moira Fanning, Director of Publicity and COO, The Hambletonian Society: To me, Foiled Again epitomizes harness racing. He wasn't a flashy 2- or 3-year-old but he kept going out on the track and grinding out wins and money. He rose to the highest echelon in racing and stayed there far longer than expected. He wouldn't stand out in a crowd and was just another bay Standardbred - until he hit the racetrack, where his workmanlike attitude meant he raced about every two weeks, year after year, and suddenly was inching past all hoses for money earned - $4 million, $5 million, $6 million - finally coming to rest at the legal age of retirement, 14, with $7.6 million banked. He was always kind of standoffish, too, didn't seek attention and didn't even like being turned out with other horses - Foiled Again is no herd animal, but he ended up being the leader of the pack. His personality seems changed a bit as well, to where he relishes the pictures, is cool with all the hoopla and puts his head down to be petted by the fans who drive from near and far to see him. Now that's a true-blue collar hero! Jeff Gural, Chairman and CEO, The Meadowlands: He was obviously a great horse and I am glad he chose this Saturday to make an appearance. He won so many races it is hard to remember any specific one! Debbie Little, harness racing writer/handicapper, New York Post: To be at the top of his game for as many years as he was, racing against the best in the business, is just extraordinary. He was great to watch when he won as the favorite but much more fun when he won as a long shot like in the 2012 Canadian Pacing Derby beating Betterthancheddar by a neck at 14-1. I remember the Niatross tour in 1996 and it was such a great thing for the fans and I think it's amazing that the connections of Foiled Again were willing to take this on. People need heroes in this sport that don't disappear after competing for just a year or two. Thank you to Foiled Again for always giving us his best and for doing it for as long as he has. He will be missed. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations    

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Muscle Diamond and Pure Country lived up to their billing as post-time favorites in taking the co-features at the Meadowlands Friday night. Driver Andy McCarthy, whose three winners on the night upped his meet-leading total to 17, guided Muscle Diamond to victory in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for trotters. The trip wasn't an easy one, but the Brett Bittle trainee was up for the challenge. Racing sixth past the quarter, McCarthy tipped the 6-year-old son of Muscle Hill-Windylane Hanover to the outside as they began their march toward the leader, who was 2015 Hambletonian champion (and 5-2 second choice) Pinkman. Muscle Diamond chipped away at the leader's edge around the far turn and was on even terms with that foe with an eighth of a mile to go before drawing clear to a three-quarter length win in 1:52.4. Will Take Charge rallied to gun down Pinkman for the place spot. As the 3-5 public choice, Muscle Diamond returned $3.20 to his backers in winning his fourth straight. Pure Country, the winner of the 2017 TVG Mare Pace, gave notice that a repeat might be coming next week as she won the co-featured $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacing fillies and mares in 1:51. Monica Gallagher was second with her entry mate, Windsun Glory, third. The Jimmy Takter-trained Pure Country was put in the four hole early by driver Yannick Gingras and opted to stay there until swinging to the outside at the five-eighths. Shortly thereafter, Monica Gallagher popped out of the two hole, providing live - albeit short-lived - cover for the eventual winner. Through the stretch, Monica Gallagher was determined, but so was the even-money public choice Pure Country, who gunned down that foe nearing the wire, notching a pulse-pounding head score. Pure Country, a 5-year-old daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Western Montana, returned $4.20 to win. She has now won 27 of 62 lifetime starts and earned $2,418,249. A LITTLE MORE: One lucky simulcast player wagering into the Oregon hub was the only bettor to last six races - and was the lone winner - in the 20-Cent Survivor Pick-10 and walked away with $12,326. ... The 50-Cent Pick-5 came back $1,174, a healthy payout when you consider the odds of the winning horses in the sequence were 2-1, 5-2, 3-1, 3-5 and 18-1. The 18-1 shot was listed at 4-1 on the morning line. ... All-source handle on the 11-race card was $1,966,181. ... Racing resumes Saturday night at 7:15 p.m. Horse of the Year favorite McWicked will prep for next week's TVG Open Pace by racing in the $20,000 Preferred Handicap. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The prolific pair of driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke were up to their old tricks Saturday night at the Meadowlands, combining to win four times on the 12-race program. Windsong Jack got the dynamic duo off to a good start in the second race harness racing pace, the $17,500 Dash For The "G" Notes final, as the 8-year-old gelded son of Santanna Blue Chip-Milliondollarsmile, who won his preliminary a week ago by 8¾ lengths in 1:51.1, was up for what was almost a repeat performance. The result was never in doubt as the 1-9 public choice cut out all of the fractions before hitting the wire 6½ lengths in front of Joe's Bid in a season's-best equaling 1:51.1. He paid $2.20 to win. But Gingras and Burke were just getting started. Rockn Motion, a regular earlier this season on the Kentucky Sire Stakes circuit, beat a solid field of conditioned pacers in race five. The son of Pet Rock-Graceful Motion, who was unraced at 2, was the only 3-year-old in the field, but held sway through the stretch despite getting steppy with an eighth of a mile to go to hold off even-money choice Ocean Colony by a head. As the 8-5 second choice, Rockn Motion paid $5.20 after completing the mile in 1:52.1. The Burke-Gingras pairing struck again in the seventh, scoring with another 3-year-old - Dragon Time - who was good enough to beat older foes in a high-range conditioned pace in 1:51.3. The gelded son of Bettor's Delight-Little Miss Dragon slipped out of the three hole at three-quarters before angling through the stretch with steady pace to gun down the pacesetting - and eventual third-place finisher - Geez Joe. Dragon Time hit the wire three-quarters of a length in front of Burkentine Hanover and paid $14.00 as the third choice in the wagering. Veteran Bettor's Edge was sent to the gate as the 3-5 choice, but after working out a perfect pocket trip came up empty at crunch time. Burke and Gingras completed their four-bagger with Magnum Mike, a 10-year-old son of Magical Mike-Dare To Dream, in the 10th race claiming handicap pace. Racing out of the Burke barn for the first time, Magnum Mike was sent to the gate as the 2-1 favorite and delivered on that promise after following perfect cover while second over. He paid $6.40 after pacing his mile in 1:52.2, a lifetime best. It 3½ lengths back to second-place finisher Glass Prince. A LITTLE MORE: Andy McCarthy won the third race to up his meet-leading driver win total to 14. ... Kyle Husted got his first training and driving winner of the meet, steering 3-2 favorite Terror Of The Nite to victory lane in the sixth. ... All-source wagering totaled $2,077,898. ... Racing resumes Friday at 7:15 p.m. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

Warrawee Ubeaut and driver Yannick Gingras held off last second chargers to win the $600,000 Breeders Crown for Two-Year-Old pacing fillies on Saturday night at The Meadowlands. On the sloppy track, the leader at the first quarter was Queen of the Pride (Tony Hall) at :26.2 who was soon overtaken by St Somewhere (Matt Kakaley) and then by Warrawee Ubeaut at the :54.2 half. Gingras kept the daughter of Sweet Lou on the lead through the 1:22.4 three-quarters and was on the lead in deep stretch when she was threatened by encroaching Prescient Beauty (Doug McNair) on the inside and Zero Tolerance (David Miller) on the outside. The margin of victory was a half-length, Zero Tolerance was second and Prescient Beauty third. The winner returned $4.00, $3.00, and $2.40. Warrawee Ubeaut is trained by Ron Burke for owners Burke Racing, Phil Collura, J. and T. Silva, Purnell and Libby, and Weaver Bruscemi. "Last week I drove her about as bad as a horse could be driven," said Gingras. "I told the girl who looks after her I'll get the job done this week. I was very confident. The race didn't play out the way I thought it would, but we just moved with the flow. It's unfortunate [the bad weather], but it is what it is, we're all racing in the same conditions and usually the cream rises to the top." by Ellen Harvey, for the Breeders Crown

North American drivers participating in Saturday's (Oct. 13) $1 million Yonkers International Trot face several challenges as they prepare for the event, most notably learning about their rivals -- and in some cases their own horse -- in addition to contemplating the best path to victory in a 10-horse field going 1-1/4 miles. "My deal is to know the competition the best I can and make decisions as it plays out," said Brian Sears, who is driving in the International Trot for the third time since its renewal in 2015 at Empire City Casino's Yonkers Raceway. Sears will be behind Cruzado Dela Noche, starting from post six, on Saturday. "My job is to learn some of these horses, which is what makes this race so difficult to win. You don't really know the competition as well as you'd like. As the race unfolds, you'll see things happen and you try to make decisions to put your horse in the best spot. But I think you have to be aggressive. You have to be as aggressive as you can get away with." Winners of the three most recent International Trots each accomplished the feat in different ways -- one of which no longer exists. In 2015, Norway's Papagayo E got a ground-saving trip behind leader Creatine and used the passing lane to earn the victory. The passing lane has since been eliminated at Yonkers. In 2016, U.S. representative Resolve led virtually from start to finish en route to his triumph. Last year, Italy's Twister Bi raced on the outside and methodically chased down leader Resolve before powering away to win by 5-1/2 lengths. Marion Marauder, who is the 3-1 morning-line favorite in Saturday's race, finished second last year. He started from post No. 1 and got away in seventh place around the first turn. He will start again from post one on Saturday. "When I had the rail last year it was a learning experience," said Scott Zeron, who drives Marion Marauder. "I pushed him off the wings enough to get him well situated, but I had to have a lot of luck on my side as well with not being able to pull the right line and go to the outer flow. "It could end up like that again this year, but I know I have a horse that's capable of winning this race. I let him leave at his own comfort. It will be playing it by ear when I go off the wings. We'll see two steps off the gate where I'm going to get situated. Hopefully I have an opportunity to race him." Trotting races at the distance of 1-1/4 miles are nothing new at Yonkers and looking back at 37 such races on Sundays in July to September shows horses that were no worse than third at the half-mile point won nearly 84 percent of the time. Horses that led at the half won 18 times while horses that were second won seven and horses third won six. Posts one and six produced the most winners, with seven each, followed by post five with six. "It's a benefit," Zeron said about the extra experience of racing 1-1/4 miles at Yonkers. "The difference with this race compared to a regular Sunday is having 10 horses that all can win. There are no long shots. These are the best of the best." Jason Bartlett, who has won seven driving titles at Yonkers including the past four, is making his first appearance in the International Trot. He will drive France's Up And Quick, who counts the 2015 Prix d'Amerique among five career Group 1 wins in Europe. Up And Quick will start from post two. "I thought the draw was very good," Bartlett said. "It gives me options. I don't really know the horse, but I'll do a little homework on him and go from there. I've talked to Bjorn Goop who drove him three starts ago. I'll watch some replays on him. That's all I can really do. I'll get a feel for him going into the turn when I score him down and that's it. "I think the biggest part I've got to learn is a little bit about the competition, each horse in the race. It's the best trotters in the world, the best drivers; you can't really go in with a game plan. "For me, it's my first time in this race. Winning it would be very special to me being that it's my home track. I'm just thankful to have the opportunity. It's going to be an interesting race." Sears will be driving Sweden's Cruzado Dela Noche for the first time. Cruzado Dela Noche raced in the U.S. at ages 2 and 3, winning a division of the International Stallion Stakes and finishing third in the Peter Haughton Memorial. In Europe, his victories include the Group 1 Copenhagen Cup. "I just hope that he's on his toes and puts up a good race," Sears said. "(To win) would be a feather in your cap. It's one of the biggest races and it's very hard to get done. To be able to accomplish that would be quite a victory, no doubt." Yannick Gingras, with Ariana G, and Tim Tetrick, with Will Take Charge, are both making their second appearances in the International Trot and enter with horses they drive regularly. It will be the first time on a half-mile track for Ariana G, a two-time Dan Patch Award-winner who is the lone mare in the race. "She's very square gaited, she's two fingers to drive, so I don't see (the half) being any problem at all," Gingras said. "I think if anything it will work in her favor. She's got it all, honestly. She's got the speed, you can stop-and-go anytime you want, and she's great gaited. I keep saying about her being great gaited, I hope I don't jinx her. "She's just so smart," he added. "Maybe that's her best attribute. I think I've got as good a shot as anybody." Racing at Yonkers begins at 1 p.m. (EDT) Saturday. The International Trot is race No. 8 on the card and scheduled for 3:40 p.m. The day also includes the $250,000 Harry Harvey Invitational Trot, featuring the fastest trotter in history, Homicide Hunter, plus the $250,000 Dan Rooney Invitational Pace, featuring the continued rivalry between McWicked and New Zealand-bred Lazarus. Following is the field in post-position order for the $1 million Yonkers International Trot. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Marion Marauder-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-3/1 2-Up And Quick-Jason Bartlett-Antoine Lherete-10/1 3-Ariana G-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/1 4-Ringostarr Treb-Wim Paal-Jerry Riordan-4/1 5-Pastore Bob-Johan Untersteiner-Johan Untersteiner-8/1 6-Cruzado Dela Noche-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-12/1 7-Will Take Charge-Tim Tetrick-Jeff Gillis-6/1 8-Arazi Boko-Alessandro Gocciadoro-Alessandro Gocciadoro-15/1 9-Lionel-Goran Antonsen-Daniel Reden-10/1 10-Slide So Easy-Flemming Jensen-Flemming Jensen-15/1 * Lionel and Slide So Easy start from the second tier. For more information, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

YONKERS, N.Y. – Training wrapped up on a hot and humid morning Sunday at the Red Mile. There were few clouds to provide cover from the beaming sunshine; the old barns and trees in the backstretch providing a reprieve from the sweltering conditions.  Jimmy Takter brought a horse in off the track and returned to his barn around 10 a.m. Relaxed a day after sending Lazarus to a second-place finish in the Allerage Farms Open Pace and the morning before starting Manchego and Tactical Landing on the Kentucky Futurity Card, Takter joined assistant Per Engblom at a table on the patio at the end of his barn facing the racetrack.  Still in his black, white, and green driving colors, Takter sat back. Legs crossed and comfortable in the shade, he pulled up a replay on his phone of Great Vintage’s second-place effort in the $44,000 Open Handicap Pace at Yonkers the night before and smiled as he watched the 10-year-old battle with Bit Of A Legend in the stretch while pacing a 1:51.1 mile. “This is one of my favorite horses,” Takter said, his eyes glued to the screen. “To do what he’s done and still be going at 10 years old is amazing.” Although Takter’s Hall of Fame resume includes four Hambletonians, six Hambletonian Oaks, 33 Breeders Crowns, an Elitlopp and a Prix d’Amérique just to name a few, Takter still has items on his bucket list as the Grand Circuit season winds down in his final year of training. Namely, he has never won the International Trot. It’s a race he’s dreamed of winning since he started his career in Sweden.  “It was a race that I saw a lot before I even came here. The French horses came over and won. This was a classic, classic race. I’m really glad they brought it back. People love it,” Takter said. “This was long before I came over here that I knew about the race and then it unfortunately disappeared for a while and wasn’t on the radar. Now of course, we just have two $1 million races in the sport, the Hambletonian and this one. “It would mean a lot. I would be really, really excited,” he continued. “This is my last year of training and to end up winning, that’s another stripe on my shoulder. It would be something.” Takter has competed in the International Trot twice before. He trained and drove Whiteland Image to a sixth-place finish in the 1995 edition, the last before the race would be revived in 2015. Takter started Creatine in the Yonkers International Trot’s reappearance; the Andover Hall stallion returned from a European campaign to represent the United States, finishing third after setting the tempo. “Long, long time ago. I don’t even remember it to be honest with you. I don’t think my horse was any good that day. They used me in the last spot, they had an opening or whatever,” Takter said of his International debut with Whiteland Image. “That was the year Melander won, His Majesty. Then I raced Creatine three years ago. He was third, so it’s time to do it now.” This year, Takter will start Ariana G in the $1 million stakes. The 4-year-old mare will represent the United States for owners Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. One of the last of the 10 competitors to be announced, Takter accepted the invitation from Yonkers Raceway race secretary Steve Starr just after her win in the Dayton Trotting Derby September 28. “I had it in the back of my head that it would be interesting to race her there,” Takter said. “I know she’s only 4 and you never know, but she showed she could compete against the aged horses. Especially now that she won at Dayton, I feel very good about it. “I talked to Steve before Dayton and I told him, I don’t want to go unless the filly is good,” Takter continued. “He actually called and invited me for the $250,000 (Harry Harvey Invitational), and I told him I’m not going to jeopardize the Breeders Crown for that race, but I’d do it for the International Trot. I waited to see how she raced at Dayton and when she won there, then I knew.” Ariana G entered the Dayton Trotting Derby off a third in the Maple Leaf Trot September 1 and a sixth in the Preferred at Mohawk September 11. She tipped three-wide off the turn in the $150,000 stakes, grinding down Guardian Angel AS and holding off Warrawee Roo to post a 1:52.1 victory and establish a new track record. “I thought she was going to race good, but we were a little bit nervous because we had sick horses up in Canada and she hadn’t raced good the start before, so we were really a little bit worried going into it that she wouldn’t be herself,” Takter admitted. “I think she was 90 percent and I think with this start in her, I think we’re going to be good.” Ariana G’s off-the-pace win in the Dayton Trotting Classic is the 26th of her 37-race career. Victories in the Doherty Memorial, Peaceful Way, Hambletonian Oaks, Elegant Image, the Breeders Crown at 2 and 3, the Graduate Final, and Hambletonian Maturity contributed to her $2.3 million bankroll.   “She’s been a World Champion from 2 years old and she’s just been phenomenal,” Takter remarked. “Every year, she just gets a little bit more mature. Now she’s a 4-year-old, she’s starting to look more professional, but she’s been a class horse from day one.” Despite her impressive record, Ariana G has never raced on a half-mile track and has never raced further than 9 furlongs. She will have to navigate the turns of Yonkers’ half-mile oval five times in the 1 ¼-mile International Trot.  Ariana G will face nine rivals in the Yonkers International Trot: Arazi Boko (Italy), Cruzado Dela Noche (Sweden), Lionel (Norway), Marion Marauder (Canada), Pastore Bob (Sweden), Ringostarr Treb (Italy), Slide So Easy (Denmark), Up And Quick (France), and Will Take Charge (Canada). She drew post four and is a 5-1 morning line with Yannick Gingras in the sulky. “She’s never raced on a half-mile, but I don’t think it’s going to be an issue. She’s pretty handy,” Takter said. “I really don’t know the European horses too much. There’s a couple of horses who can really bust out of the gate good and I don’t know if they have the stamina. I think the two horses that are big contenders are ‘Ariana’ and Marion Marauder. Whoever gets the best trip is going to be close there. “I don’t think I want to see her do the dirty work too much,” he continued. “It’s a mile-and-a-quarter. If she’s sitting fourth or fifth with decent horses in front of her, maybe working out a second-over trip the last lap, would be the dream spot.” The $1 million Yonkers International Trot is slated for Saturday, October 13 at Yonkers Raceway. The card will also feature a pair of $250,000 invitationals, the Harry Harvey Trot and Dan Rooney Pace. For more information on the event and its participants, click here. By Brandon Valvo, for the SOA of NY

New York, NY --- Marion Marauder, who finished second in last year's $1 million Yonkers International Trot, is the 3-1 morning-line favorite in Saturday's (Oct. 13) 40th edition of the invitational, which will be raced at 1-1/4 miles at Empire City Casino's Yonkers Raceway. The 5-year-old stallion, representing Canada, was made the top choice after getting post No. 1 on Tuesday at the event's draw and press conference at Manhattan's 21 Club. Scott Zeron will drive Marion Marauder for trainer Paula Wellwood. Marion Marauder has won six of 10 races this year and finished no worse than second in any start. He heads to the International Trot off a win in the Caesars Trotting Classic on Sept. 21 at Hoosier Park. Other victories in 2018 include the John Cashman Memorial and Cleveland Trotting Classic. He was second in the Maple Leaf Trot and Maxie Lee Memorial Invitational. "It beats the heck out of the seven or eight hole, that's for sure," said Mike Keeling, who shares the training duties on Marion Marauder with his wife, Paula Wellwood, about drawing the rail. "At least we won't be parked. "He loves three weeks between races and this works out perfectly from his last start. I think he's probably a touch better than he was for the Hoosier race. We're really pleased with him right now. As long as he's in good shape and the race sets up for him, we'll be fine. "I follow the Europeans a little bit. I know Lionel, I know Ringostarr Treb. The other horses I'm not so familiar with. We'll look at the program pages. We can only do what we can do, it's up to Scott to figure out the rest." For his career, Marion Marauder has won 20 of 48 races and earned $3.08 million for owners Jean Wellwood and Devin Keeling. He was the 2016 Trotter of the Year after winning the Trotting Triple Crown and captured another Dan Patch Award in 2017 as best older male trotter. Marion Marauder has enjoyed success at Yonkers, with three wins and two seconds in five career starts. One of the victories came in the Yonkers Trot on his way to the Triple Crown. Ariana G, the U.S. representative and lone mare in the field of 10, drew post three and is 5-1 on the morning line. The International Trot has been won by a mare 11 times, most recently by Peace Corps in 1991. The International Trot was contested from 1959 through 1995 before being resurrected in 2015. A Dan Patch Award divisional champion at ages 2 and 3, the 4-year-old Ariana G has won five of 11 races this year and heads to the International Trot off a win over male rivals in the Dayton Trotting Derby on Sept. 28. Other victories this season include the Hambletonian Maturity and Graduate Series championship. She also won her elimination for the Maple Leaf Trot and finished third in the final. For her career, Ariana G has won 26 of 37 races and earned $2.36 million for owners Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Yannick Gingras will drive the mare for trainer Jimmy Takter. "You have to be happy with the draw," said Gingras. "But I think most of the good horses got good spots too. It will be a tactical race, but we can't complain about where we'll start. "I think she's super sharp. She raced really good in Ohio in her last start. Jimmy skipped Lexington pointing toward this race. I think it was a smart move, no doubt. I think she's got as good a shot as anybody." Will Take Charge, a second Canadian representative as a late replacement for the Netherlands' Dreammoko, drew post seven and is 6-1. The Jeff Gillis-trained 5-year-old gelding, who will have Tim Tetrick in the sulky, has won nine of 21 races this year, including the Crawford Farms Open Trot and Maxie Lee Memorial, for owner Mac Nichol. For his career, he has won 21 of 71 starts and $848,116. Elitloppet winner Ringostarr Treb, one of two horses representing Italy, leads the international contingent. The 8-year-old stallion is trained by New England native Jerry Riordan, who conditioned last year's International Trot champion Twister Bi. Ringostarr Treb, who has won 30 of 86 career races and $1.57 million, will start from post four with driver Wilhelm "Wim" Paal and is 4-1. The stallion is owned by E.V.A.M. Racing. "I'm very happy about the post," Paal said. "It keeps me a little bit out of the traffic in the first turn. I can choose my own race. I think there are four or five horses that have a good shot in this race --- Marion Marauder, Up And Quick, Ariana G. For me, Lionel is a horse you should not underestimate because he shows his best at a mile-and-a-quarter and he is a classy horse. "I think the small track gives a big opportunity to the four (inside) horses. They are all good horses and were lucky in the draw." Up And Quick, who won the 2015 Prix d'Amerique, drew post two and is 10-1 with top Yonkers driver Jason Bartlett in the sulky for trainer Antoine Lherete. The 10-year-old stallion, representing France, has won 16 of 74 career races and $2.81 million. He is owned by Ecurie Quick Star. Lionel, representing Norway, drew post nine in the second tier and is 10-1 with owner Goran Antonsen set to drive. The 8-year-old stallion, trained by Daniel Reden, won his Elitloppet elimination and finished fifth in the final. He has won 23 of 69 races and $1.67 million. The remaining International Trot participants are Italy's Arazi Boko, Sweden's Cruzado Dela Noche and Pastore Bob, and Denmark's Slide So Easy. For video of the post draw click here. Racing begins at 1 p.m. Saturday. The International Trot is race No. 8 on the card and scheduled for 3:40 p.m. Following is the field in post-position order for the $1 million Yonkers International Trot. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Marion Marauder-Scott Zeron-Paula Wellwood-3/1 2-Up And Quick-Antoine Lherete-Jason Bartlett-10/1 3-Ariana G-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter-5/1 4-Ringostarr Treb-Wilhelm Paal-Jerry Riordan-4/1 5-Pastore Bob-Johan Untersteiner-Johan Untersteiner-8/1 6-Cruzado Dela Noche-Brian Sears-Marcus Melander-12/1 7-Will Take Charge-Tim Tetrick-Jeff Gillis-6/1 8-Arazi Boko-Alessandro Gocciadoro-Alessandro Gocciadoro-15/1 9-Lionel-Goran Antonsen-Daniel Reden-10/1 10-Slide So Easy-Flemming Jensen-Flemming Jensen-15/1 For more information, visit www.internationaltrot.com. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

LEXINGTON, KY--The Ron Burke-trained Sweet Lou filly Warrawee Ubeaut decimated the world-record mark for two-year-old pacing fillies when winning the $61,250 Roll With Joe division of the International Stallion Stakes (ISS), all sponsored by Blue Chip Stallions, on Friday, Oct. 5 at The Red Mile, pacing to the mile in 1:48.3. Her stablemate Youaremycandygirl held the previous mark of 1:50 set at The Red Mile last year. Beautyonthebeach seized control from post seven and fronted the field to a :27 opening quarter with Queen Of The Pride in second and Zero Tolerance in third. Yannick Gingras positioned Warrawee Ubeaut fifth and began her brush for the lead in the backstretch, clearing command following a :55.1 half. Warrawee Ubeaut kept her speed rolling to three-quarters as she passed three-quarters in 1:22. Queen Of The Pride paced into second as Zero Tolerance angled off the rail and also gave chase in third. Warrawee Ubeaut held firmly to the line and won by two-and-three-quarter lengths in the end. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Phillip Collura, Jerry & Thersa Silva, Purnel & Libby and Weaver Bruscemi, Warrawee Ubeaut won her sixth race from nine starts, earning $300,393. She paid $3.60 to win. Burke came back to win when St Somewhere posted a 1:50.4 victory in the $61,250 Shadow Play ISS division. Art Lecture left for the lead from post seven while Margret Hill took the pocket and St Somewhere pushed into third. Gingras slid off the rail and sent St Somewhere for the lead past the :28.1 opening quarter, clearing after a :55.4 half. The field tightened when St Somewhere cleared the lead. Margret Hill, from third, broke stride as Treacherous Reign and Prescient Beauty moved off the rail in pursuit of the pacesetter. St Somewhere remained in front as Treacherous Reign pressured her through three-quarters in 1:23.4 before parking into the stretch. Art Lecture shot through the pylons into second as St Somewhere paced steadfast on the lead. Prescient Beauty tipped off cover to take third while Treacherous Reign faded to fourth. Winning her fourth race in 11 starts, St Somewhere, a Ron Burke-trained filly by American Ideal, competes for Burke Racing Stable, Philip Collura, Jerry & Theresa Silva Stable, Purnel & Libby and Weaver Bruscemi. The earner of $168,768 returned $8.20 to win. Tall Drink Hanover took the top past the quarter and strolled to a 1:50 victory in the $61,250 Bettor's Delight ISS split. The Tony Alagna-trained Captaintreacherous filly marched towards early leader Sylph Hanover heading to the quarter. Timed in :28, Tall Drink Hanover swiftly slid to the lead and maintained her speed through the half in :55. Undefiable, positioned fourth, pulled first over moving into the final turn. She paced up to the leader's wheel by three-quarters in 1:23.1 but was turned away into the lane as Tall Drink Hanover sped into the stretch under a hand drive. Undefiable took second from Sylph Hanover in third while She's Allright, riding the rail, held fourth. Winning her sixth race from nine starts, Tall Drink Hanover has earned $343,914 for owners Alagna Racing LLC, Marvin Katz and Riverview Racing LLC. Andrew McCarthy drove the $3.20 winner. With 6-5 favorite Louphoria losing stride around the first turn, Annie Hill took control, yielded for the pocket and crept through the pylons late to win the $61,250 American Ideal ISS split in 1:51.4. Annie Hill took the lead before the quarter with Louphoria pacing in third before going on a gallop and Renaissance Lady K in fourth. By the opening panel in :27.2, Annie Hill soon backed for the pocket as Renaissance Lady K marched for command in the backstretch and cleared the top prior to a :55.3 half. Bestseller Hanover angled first over heading into the far turn and progressed into third by three-quarters in 1:24.1. Renaissance Lady K clung to the lead in the stretch as Annie Hill, locked in the pocket, waited for a seam to the inside of Bestseller Hanover. With a slight opening, Annie Hill inched through the inside and past Renaissance Lady K to claim victory. Cruise, trailing throughout, launched through the center of the track for third while Bestseller Hanover faded to fourth. Owned by Tom Hill, Annie Hill won her fourth race from seven starts, earning $64,919. Andrew McCarthy piloted the Captaintreacherous filly for trainer Chris Oakes and returned $6.80 to win. Grand Circuit action continues at The Red Mile on Saturday, Oct. 6 with Lazarus N headlining the program in the $179,000 Mister Big Allerage Farms Pace sponsored by Muscara Standardbreds. Five divisions of the $312,000 Captaintreacherous ISS Two-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace, sponsored by the Captaintreacherous Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms, along with two divisions of the $225,000 Glen Garnsey Memorial sponsored by Diamond Creek Farm and the $145,000 What The Hill Allerage Farms Trot sponsored by Jeff & Paula Gural, are also slated on the program. Racing gets underway for the 11-race matinee with first-race post time scheduled for 1:00 p.m. (EDT). By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile

LEXINGTON, KY--Sent the 6-5 second choice, Cantab Fashion got the jump on 3-5 favorite Green Manlishi S and outsprinted his competition to take the third of three divisions of the $275,600 Trixton International Stallion Stakes, sponsored by the Trixton Syndicate, on Thursday, Oct. 4 at The Red Mile in 1:51.4 to collect his fifth-consecutive victory. The Jim Campbell-trained colt by Cantab Hall trotted into third while Battenberg swooped to the lead ahead of Union Forces getting the pocket. By the first quarter in :28.1, Cantab Fashion tipped off the rail and rushed to the front before accelerating the tempo to a :55.2 half. Green Manalishi S moved first over heading into the final turn and marched towards the leader's wheel heading to three-quarters. Past that marker in 1:24, Green Manalishi S continued to dig into Cantab Fashion in the stretch before the eventual winner entered another gear and edged to a length and a half victory at the wire. Union Forces held third from Battenberg fourth. Surpassing $100,000 in career earnings, Cantab Fashion competes for owner-breeder Fashion Farms LLC. David Miller drove the $4.60 winner. Pulling pocket past the quarter, the Domenico Cecere-trained Muscle Hill colt Kings County trotted fast fractions in progress to a 1:52.3 victory in the first division of the ISS. Hudson River took the lead towards the inside with Kings County tucking into second and Trix And Stones third. Following a :27.4 opening quarter driver David Miller angled Kings County off the cones and circled to the lead in the backstretch. Gaining separation and speeding clear, Kings County led Hudson River through a :55.2 half. Slowing the tempo to three-quarters, Kings County still held control as Hudson River gradually reeled in the leader and readied to pull off the rail passing three-quarters, timed in 1:24. Kings County turned into the stretch and remained extended to the line as Trix And Stones rallied three wide to take second ahead of Chin Chin Hall, off a rail trip, closing through the center for third. Kings County, competing for Lindy Farms of Connecticut, won his fourth race from nine starts, propelling his bankroll to $142,782. Sent the 3-2 favorite, he paid $5.00 to win. Super Schissel circled to the lead past the quarter and held command under a tight hold from driver Yannick Gingras to win the second ISS division in 1:54.3. The Jimmy Takter-trained colt by Uncle Peter moved for the lead through a :28.2 opening quarter and pocketed early pacesetter Brady Bunch heading into the backstretch. Odds-on favorite Demon Onthe Hill, racing fifth, pulled first over passing the half in :56.4 before flushing cover from Sheena's Boy heading into the final turn. Passing three-quarters in 1:26.4, Sheena's Boy went on a gallop and interfered with second-over Demon Onthe Hill turning into the stretch and left Super Schissel with an uncontested lead. Brady Bunch edged off the rail and gave pursuit along with Lindy's Crazy Hall towards the pylons and Demon Onthe Hill recouping ground towards the center. Super Schissel finished about a half length ahead of Brady Bunch cutting into his margin at the wire while Demon Onthe Hill edged Lindy's Crazy Hall in the photo for third. Owned by Al Libfeld and Perry Soderberg, Super Schissel won his third race from eight starts, collecting $107,500 in earnings. Jimmy Takter trains the $13.00 winner. Grand Circuit action continues at The Red Mile Friday, Oct. 5 with freshman pacing fillies competing in four divisions of the $245,000 ISS, all sponsored by Blue Chip Stallions, while freshman filly trotters race in five divisions of the $324,500 ISS, three of which are named for Walner and sponsored by the Walner Syndicate and two of which named for Muscle Hill and sponsored by Southwind Farms. The 12-race matinee gets underway with first-race post at 1:00 p.m. (EDT). By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile  

When 3-year-old filly harness racing pacers Kissin In The Sand, Youaremycandygirl, and Alexa's Power get together, the race has the potential to be memorable. And twice already this season, they've fulfilled that potential. The three fillies have met three times this year and finished 1-2-3 in each race. Their first encounter resulted in Kissin In The Sand's gutsy parked-out victory by a neck over Youaremycandygirl in the James M. Lynch Memorial at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono. The next was Kissin In The Sand's win by three lengths over Youaremycandygirl in the Mistletoe Shalee, at 1-1/8 miles, at The Meadowlands. Most recently, on the Aug. 4 Hambletonian Day card at the Big M, they finished three across the wire separated by a neck in the Shady Daisy Stakes at The Meadowlands. Youaremycandygirl won that encounter by a nose over Kissin In The Sand in a stakes- and track-record 1:48.2. Round four is Saturday at Lexington's Red Mile in the second of two divisions of the Glen Garnsey Stakes. "They're three exceptional fillies," said Jim Campbell, who trains Alexa's Power. "We're going to need our 'A' game. It's a very tough division, but at this time of the year you're going to race tough. It's just part of the game. She's an honest filly and she gives us a great effort every time we put her out there." Kissin In The Sand drew post No. 6 in the eight-horse field and is the 9-5 morning-line favorite. Youaremycandygirl will start from post four and is the 2-1 second choice while Alexa's Power will start from post seven and is 3-1. "It's going to be an interesting matchup with me getting the middle of the three on the gate," said Scott Zeron, who drives Kissin In The Sand. "It's up to me because Kissin In The Sand is definitely as good as she's been all year. It will be interesting to see how it shapes up. We're in Lexington with a mile track and we're all going to get a fair shot." Kissin In The Sand leads all 3-year-old female pacers in purses with $673,620 thanks to nine wins and four second-place finishes in 13 starts. The Nancy Johansson-trained filly, owned by Marvin Katz and Hatfield Stables, has won five of her past six races, including the Bluegrass Stakes last weekend at Red Mile and over older foes in the fillies-and-mares preferred Sept. 22 at Woodbine Mohawk Park. "She's gotten better every start this year," Zeron said. "It's pretty exciting. A few of the times she's done it the hard way, too. It's not like everyone lays down for us and we go slow fractions and then take off late. Even beating the open mares was impressive. Everything is pointing toward a good weekend." Alexa's Power is the second-richest 3-year-old filly pacer this season, with $429,891. She has won nine of 16 races for owners Jeff Snyder and Michael Snyder and finished off the board only once. Since the Shady Daisy, she has won four of five starts, including the Jugette in her most recent outing Sept. 19 at the Delaware County Fair in Ohio. Tim Tetrick will drive the filly Saturday, as he has for all but one of her races this season. "She came out of the Jugette really good and she acts good," Campbell said. Youaremycandygirl, the 2017 Dan Patch Award-winner for best 2-year-old female pacer, has won six of 12 races this season and earned $367,921 for owner Bill Donovan. She won five times and finished second twice during a seven-race span from mid-June to mid-August. She heads to the Garnsey after going off stride in the Jugette. "We just had a bad thing at the Jugette, but everything will be all right with her," trainer Ron Burke said. "She had a little tie-up incident, that's all it was. We knew exactly what was wrong with her. I thought I had gotten through it, but I didn't. You try to do the best you can, but sometimes it doesn't work out. "She's seems like she's gotten herself turned around now." Last year at Red Mile, Youaremycandygirl became the fastest 2-year-old filly pacer in history with a 1:50 win in a division of the International Stallion Stakes. In the first Garnsey division, New York Sire Stakes champion Wisdom Tree is the 8-5 morning-line favorite. Saturday's card also includes the Allerage Farms Open Pace, which features another clash between New Zealand-bred star Lazarus, the 2-1 morning-line favorite, and McWicked (5-2) as well as Dayton Pacing Derby champ Donttellmeagain (4-1); the Allerage Farms Open Trot, with International Trot-bound Will Take Charge as the 2-1 choice; and five divisions of the International Stallion Stakes for 2-year-old male pacers. For Saturday's complete entries at Red Mile, click here. by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA

MIILTON, ON - September 25, 2018 - Hambletonian champion Atlanta battled heavy rain and older rivals to finish second in Tuesday's $34,000 Preferred at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Four-year-old trotting mare Royal Witch delivered a top-notch effort in the rain to pull off a 12-1 upset victory in 1:56.1 for driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ben Baillargeon. Dunbar Hall fronted the field of six into the backstretch after being parked through a :28.4 opening-quarter, leading to the half in :58.4. Royal Witch came first-up from third for Gingras on the far turn and trotted around Dunbar Hall, who made a break strides before the three-quarter pole. Atlanta and trainer/driver Rick Zeron got away fourth and stayed inside on the far turn to sit fifth and just over three-lengths from the lead. After reaching three-quarters in 1:27.2, Royal Witch was able to seal the deal with a :28.4 final-quarter for her eighth win of the season. Atlanta and Zeron finished up well, making up ground in the lane and splitting late to edge B Yoyo for second. The margin of victory was a length and a quarter. A daughter of Kadabra, Royal Witch has now earned $109,300 in 17 starts this season and her 11th career victory pushes her to $224,793 in lifetime earnings for owners Tom and Elizabeth Rankin. Royal Witch's first-career Preferred victory saw her return $27.80 for a $2 win ticket. Hambletonian champion Atlanta was making her first start since finishing third in the $340,000 Elegantimage on September 15. The Zeron trained daughter of Chapter Seven is being towards the Kentucky Filly Futurity on October 7 at The Red Mile for her next start. Atlanta, who has won six of 10 starts this season, increased her seasonal earnings to $784,902 with her 10th 'on the board' finish of the season. Her career earnings currently sit at $919,977 for owners Zeron, Crawford Farms, Holland Racing Stable, Howard Taylor and Brad Grant. Live racing resumes Thursday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Post time is 7:10 p.m. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications

The man with the best seat in the house says Lazraus can get better even after he downed many of North America’s best pacers again over the weekend. The former Kiwi pacing hero led throughout in the Hoosier Park Pacing Derby to hold out his new arch rival McWicked in the Indiana race on Saturday afternoon (NZ time). In a near replay of his US debut four starts ago, Lazraus showed blistering gate speed and led and while he didn’t have much in reserve at the line he had done all the work early and into a strong wind down the back straight to stop the clock at 1:48.8 That victory takes Lazarus’s record to two wins and two seconds in four North American starts and while he is already beating the best free-for-allers up there, driver Yannick Gingras says Lazarus can go faster. And will need to. “After having a virus a few weeks ago I am sure he is still getting back to his best,” said Gingras. “He felt good but he can feel better still. He really is a very, very good horse.  “He looks like having some pretty regular racing coming up in the next six weeks and that should see him improve even more.”
 Lazarus is now being aimed at the US$150,000 Dayton Pacing Derby in Ohio on Friday night (Saturday NZ time), although Gingras was not sure whether a start there was certain.  But the six-year-old has already been transferred to Kentucky where he will be based not only for the Dayton Derby but the feature open class mile at the lightning fast Red Mile track on October 6.  While Lazarus was embellishing his reputation in the US the last horse to nearly beat him in New Zealand, Dream About Me, made a long-overdue return to the winner’s circle in the Hannon Memorial at Oamaru yesterday.  Former stablemate Dream About Me, who pushed Lazarus to a half neck in the Ashburton Flying Stakes last October, made the most of a lucky break turning for home in yesterday’s $30,000 free-for-all to grab leader A G’s White Socks right on the line.  Dream About Me hadn’t won a race since the Auckland Cup 21 months ago and those who took the $1.80 yesterday wouldn’t have been feeling comfortable when she was parked early.  But after securing the one-one at the bell she was able to dive into the trail at the top of the straight when the trailer stopped, gifting her the passing lane run and the win in the latest step toward the New Zealand Cup on November 13.   Michael Guerin

ANDERSON, IN  - It was billed as Round Three of a budding rivalry between two superstar harness racing pacers in Lazarus N (Yannick Gingras) and McWicked (David Miller) and the contest lived up to every bit of the hype, as on Friday (Sept. 21) Lazarus N defeated a hard-charging McWicked by a neck in a scintillating edition of the $177,000 Hoosier Park Pacing Derby at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino in 1:48.4. "He felt very good when I was warming him up so I was confident he would race well tonight," said Jimmy Takter, who conditions Lazarus N for Taylor Made Farm. "We know what a talented horse he is, and he really seems to like it here at Hoosier Park." Unlike his last race at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Sept. 15 where Gingras drove Lazarus N rather conservatively after his second place finish to McWicked in the $462,000 Canadian Pacing Derby on Sept. 1, the 6-year-old stallion was placed right on the lead prior to the first turn. Leading the field of nine through a first quarter in :26 and the half-mile in :55, Lazarus N looked very strong on the lead he maintained over Filibuster Hanover and Split The House. As Lazarus N hit the three-quarter pole in 1:23, McWicked was pacing comfortably in fifth place and when Western Fame moved first-over, he received a perfect second-over trip to commence his bid for victory. Around the final turn, the separation Lazarus N had placed between himself and the rest of the field began to vanish while McWicked swung to the outside to close with his customary power. As the wire loomed ever closer, McWicked was gaining on Lazarus N with every stride, but Lazarus N was determined and held off McWicked by a diminishing neck. Donttellmeagain (Tim Tetrick) used a :24.3 final quarter to finish third. "He felt just like he did the first time we came to Hoosier Park," Gingras said. "He is definitely back to himself." Sent to the gate as the even-money favorite, Lazarus N, a son of Bettor's Delight, rewarded his backers with a payout of $4.40. McWicked, who is trained by Casie Coleman and owned by Ed James, was the public's second selection at odds of 2-1, provided his supporters with $3.40. Donttellmeagain, (10-1) paid $4 for his third place finish. By Kim French, for Hoosier Park Racing & Casino

ANDERSON, IN - Although she did not assume command until the half-mile marker, the result of the $172,000 Moni Maker was never in much doubt as world champion Manchego (Yannick Gingras) collected the 19th victory of her career with ease on Friday (Sept. 21) at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on spectacular stakes-laden car. "This is very meaningful for me as this race is named after one of the most wonderful mares I have trained," said Jimmy Takter, the filly's trainer. "But this filly is quite special too." Leaving from post position 10, Manchego and Gingras settled in fourth place trotting away from the gate and were content to follow Custom Cantab through a first quarter-mile in :27.3. Shortly before the field of 10 hit the half-mile pole, Gingras unleashed Manchego and the daughter of Muscle Hill went straight to the top, while Hey Blondie (Andrew McCarthy) settled into second with Custom Cantab (Peter Wrenn) dropping back to third. After a half-mile in :56.2, Manchego pulled away from her rivals to post a 1:25.2 three-quarter mark, then cruised through the lane to stop the clock in 1:53. Custom Cantab was second and Seviyorum was third. Manchego, who is owned by Black Horse Racing, John Fielding and Herb Liverman, paid $2.20 as the 1-2 favorite. Custom Cantab (14-1) provided her supporters with $5 to place and Seviyorum (25-1) paid (25-1). Proof victorious in The Elevation Scott Zeron placed the 1-9 favorite, Proof, on the lead shortly before the half-mile marker and the 2-year-old son of A Rocknroll Dance-Ginger And Fred paced strongly to the finish to improve his record to a sparkling 7-5-2-0 in the $120,000 Elevation Stakes. Trained by Brian Brown and competing as a homebred for Diamond Creek Racing, Proof ($2.20) tripped the timer in 1:52. Loutenant (Matt Kakaley) was second ($4.80) with Pure Rock (John DeLong, $3.60) third. Warrawee Ubeaut, Woodside Charm Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes winners With Yannick Gingras in the bike, Warrawee Ubeaut returned to the winner's circle after two consecutive losses with a statement triumph in the $207,000 division of the Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes. Trained by Ron Burke, the daughter of Sweet Lou-Great Memories used a pocket trip to pass Zero Tolerance (David Miller) in mid-stretch to boost her resume to 8-5-1-1 in her young career. Zero Tolerance ($2.10) was second and Pace Baby Pace (Matt Kakaley, $6) was third. Warrawee Ubeaut is owned by Burke Racing Stable, Phillip Collura, J&T Silva Stables, Purnell & Libby and Weaver Bruscemi. The final time was 1:51.3. Woodside Charm (Verlin Yoder) remains a perfect five-for-five after a facile victory in her $236,000 division of the Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes in 1:55. Leaving from post position eight, Yoder, who also steered the filly, placed her immediately on the lead. From that juncture, it was clearly obvious the world champion daughter of Chapter Seven-Fireworks Hanover was the one to beat as she lead the field of nine around the Anderson oval with fractions of :27, :58.1 and 1:27.3. Owned by her trainer-driver, Woodside Charm paid $2.40. Special Honor (Andy Miller, $7) came home second, with Starita (David Miller, $2.20) in third. Always A Prince powerful in Jenna's Beach Boy After favorite Jimmy Freight (Louis-Philippe Roy) threw down a sizzling :25.2 first quarter-mile, it left the door wide open for any of his five rivals to spring the upset and track record holder Always A Prince (Trace Tetrick) was the one who proved up to the task in this $155,000 event. Sitting in third for until entering the homestretch, Always A Prince moved powerfully on the outside to reach the wire ahead of Shnitzledosomethin (David Miller) and a valiant Jimmy Freight in 1:48.4, which was the same final time Lazarus N recorded in his win later on the card. Owned by Carl and Melanie Atley, Always a Prince paid $3.80 as the public's second choice while Schnitzeldosomethin provided $8 to those who supported him at the windows. Jimmy Freight paid $2.10. Live racing will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, September 23 with an 11-race card. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 10. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. Kim French, for Hoosier Park Racing & Casino  

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