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MILTON, ON - June 16, 2018 - Hannelore Hanover captured her third consecutive Armbro Flight Stakes on Saturday's Pepsi North America Cup undercard at Woodbine Mohawk Park. The reigning Canadian and American Horse of the Year was untouchable in the $250,000 event for trotting mares, as she completed a front-end mission with a :27.2 final-quarter to win by three and three-quarter lengths in 1:52. "Right now she couldn't be any better," said driver Yannick Gingras following Hannelore Hanover's victory. "She's sound, she's happy, I didn't even kick the plugs the last couple of weeks, she's doing it on her own." A six-year-old daughter of Swan For All, Hannelore Hanover left hard from post-five to secure the lead and proceeded to post fractions of :27, :56.1 and 1:24.3. Emoticon Hanover tracked Hannelore Hanover's every move from the two-hole, but couldn't touch the defending champion, who recorded her 40th career victory. Emoticon Hanover held second, while Caprice Hill and Dream Together rounded out the Superfecta. Trained by Ron Burke, Hannelore Hanover is now perfect in four starts this season. Her three-peat in the Armbro Flight increases her career earnings to over $2.8 million for owners Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Frank Baldachino and J And T Silva Stables LLC. Hannelore Hanover has defeated male rivals on multiple occasions, including last season's Maple Leaf Trot. Gingras noted how important the easy victory was for the big plans her connections have in mind. "The more easy miles we can put on her now, we have some big races later on and maybe even some big plans over the winter." A $2 win ticket on Hannelore Hanover returned $2.20. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications

The 2016 Armbro Flight Stakes can be looked upon as Hannelore Hanover's coming-out party, and in the two years that followed she went from an intriguing newcomer among older female trotters to the sport's reigning queen. Hannelore Hanover was a star on the Indiana circuit at ages 2 and 3, but eight races into her 4-year-old campaign made her presence felt on the Grand Circuit by winning the Armbro Flight by 6-1/2 lengths in 1:51, still the fastest mile ever by a female trotter in Canada. The next week she made her first appearance in harness racing's weekly Top 10 poll and has remained a fixture in the rankings ever since. Last year, Hannelore Hanover captured Horse of the Year honors in both the U.S. and Canada. On Saturday, she goes for an unprecedented third consecutive win in the Armbo Flight when she faces nine rivals in the C$250,000 race for older female trotters at Woodbine Mohawk Park. The 6-year-old mare, unbeaten in three starts this season, is the 2-5 morning-line favorite. Since the beginning of her 4-year-old season, the Ron Burke-trained Hannelore Hanover has won 30 of 40 races and finished worse than second only three times. "She just shows up every week and puts in a great effort," said Frank Baldachino, who owns Hannelore Hanover with the Burke Racing Stable, the Weaver Bruscemi partnership, and J&T Silva Stables. "You kind of get spoiled after a while. She's just all racehorse; all business when she goes on the track. Hopefully this week she'll be all business again." Named in honor of renowned German amateur driver Hannelore Würzinger, Hannelore Hanover is a daughter of Swan For All out of High Sobriety. She was purchased for $32,000 at the 2013 Standardbred Horse Sale and has subsequently earned $2.58 million on the racetrack. Her family includes Mack Lobell, who is joined by Moni Maker as the only two-time Dan Patch Award Horse of the Year honorees in the past 35 years. Hannelore Hanover, who was the first trotting mare since Moni Maker in 1999 to receive Horse of the Year honors in the U.S., will have the chance to duplicate their accomplishment this year. "Buying her as a baby we had limited expectations, hoping we had a nice Indiana Sire Stakes horse," Baldachino said. "For her to achieve the success she's had over the last two years is pretty amazing. You never think about that. Then when you get to this level everybody is gunning for you now, trying to knock you off that level, but she just keeps maintaining it. That's what is pretty special." Hannelore Hanover and driver Yannick Gingras defeated male rivals multiple times last year, most notably in the finals of the Breeders Crown Open Trot and Maple Leaf Trot, as well as in the Allerage Farms Open Trot. She became the fastest female trotter in history when she won the Allerage in 1:49.2 at Lexington's Red Mile and was the first mare to beat the boys in the Breeders Crown Open Trot since Moni Maker in 1998. She finished last season with a win in the TVG Series championship for trotting mares and brings a six-race win streak to Saturday's Armbro Flight. Hannelore Hanover's victories this season include the Cutler Memorial at the Meadowlands, a track-record-equaling triumph in a division of the Great Northeast Open Series at Harrah's Philadelphia, and a 5-1/2 length win in 1:52 in her Armbro Flight elimination. "It's been awesome; I couldn't be happier," Baldachino said about the start of the season, which has seen Hannelore Hanover push her career record to 39 wins in 61 races. "She looks great, she's got a great way of going, Yannick's happy with her, Ronnie's happy with her -- we're all happy with her." Hannelore Hanover and Gingras start the Armbro Flight from post No. 5. The field also includes Emoticon Hanover, who also won an Armbro Flight elimination and handed Hannelore Hanover one of her losses in 2017 with a world-record mile in the Joie De Vie Stakes at Tioga Downs, and stakes-winners Celebrity Ruth, Caprice Hill, Dream Together, and Ice Attraction. Emoticon Hanover and Dream Together are both trained by Luc Blais. "(Hannelore Hanover) looks great, but Emoticon Hanover is a great horse, too, and there are other nice horses in there," Baldachino said. "All her main competitors are inside of her. I don't think they're just going to let her waltz to the lead and cut her own fractions. There's an entry in there and there could be some horses mixing it up early, so we'll see. Hopefully Yannick gets her in the right spot. We leave it up to him." The Armbro Flight is part of a stakes-rich card at Woodbine Mohawk Park that also includes the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old male pacers. The North America Cup is scheduled for 10:40 p.m. (EDT) and will be broadcast live from 10-11 p.m. on TSN2. First race post time is 6:30 p.m. for the 15-race card. The Armbro Flight is race three. Following is the field for the Armbro Flight Stakes. For complete entries for Saturday, click here. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer-Morning Line 1-Caprice Hill-Doug McNair-Tony Alagna-12/1 2-Celebrity Ruth-David Miller-Trond Smedshammer-3/1 3-Dream Together-James MacDonald-Luc Blais-12/1 4-Emoticon Hanover-Bob McClure-Luc Blais-7/2 5-Hannelore Hanover-Yannick Gingras-Ron Burke-2/5 6-Checkmate Time-Donald Dupont-Marie Dupont-20/1 7-Southwind Tesla-Phil Hudon-Rene Dion-15/1 8-Majestic Presence-Chris Christoforou-Dagfin Henriksen-20/1 9-Ice Attraction-Jody Jamieson-Ake Svanstedt-20/1 10-P L Jill-Corey Callahan-Renaldo Morales-15/1 by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

WILKES-BARRE PA - Manchego kept her place in the spotlight intact Tuesday night in one of four $30,000 divisions of the Pennsylvania All-Stars event for three-year-old trotting fillies at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, overcoming the tuck-then-first-over trip to post a 1:52.4 victory. The undefeated daughter of Muscle Hill found herself in the middle of a quintet of strong leavers, and Yannick Gingras backed the winner of $917,188 into a midpack tuck, then started first-over on the second turn after Nixie Volo, who had been responsible for the early numbers of 27.1 and 56.3. Manchego started to gain the advantage at the 1:24.4 3/4s, but for a second the upset-minded had a thrill as Nixie Volo kept the champion out on the turn. But Manchego simply increased her distance consumption in her effortless way, coming home two lengths to the good of late-closing Top Expectations, with Nixie Volo another 1¼ lengths back in third. Manchego's 1:52.4 equaled her personal mark, achieved last year at both Mohawk and Lexington. Jimmy Takter had the filly in top shape after a 22-day racetrack layoff, getting her 14th win in succession without much of a sweat for owners Black Horse Racing, John Fielding, and Herb Liverman. Manchego commanded so much of the crowd's respect, she drew almost $19,000 of the $22,000+ win/place/show pool, and the Exacta she headed with 43-1 Top Expectations second returned only $15.20 (the second choice was 23-1 behind the 1-9 shot). Then, the most marked of mutuel contrasts followed 18 minutes later, as the Explosive Matter filly Highland Dynamite made the most of a pocket trip behind pacesetter Bill's Lady, going up the Pocono Pike to catch that foe in 1:53.1 while returning $250.80 to win and combining with Bill's Lady, the 5-2 second choice, for a $4878.80 exacta. Simon Allard guided the Pierre Paradis-trained shocker, who reduced her mark 5 2/5 seconds while gaining into a 55.2 back half for the Highland Thoroughbred Farm. (The other galloping reference of the night came in race four, where the winner was named Justified.) Southwind Angelica came out before the ¾ to challenge pacesetting favorite Basquiat and wore her down late in their division, posting a neck victory while taking a new mark of 1:54.2. Another daughter of Muscle Hill, the winner stepped her own back fractions in 55.4 - 27.4 in taking the decision for driver Andrew McCarthy, trainer Jonas Czernyson, and owner Thomas Dillon. The final All-Stars contest was taken by the Donato Hanover filly Live Laugh Love, who gained solidly from third midrace to take the lead in early stretch and win by herself in 1:54.3. The Nifty Norman trainee, a Sire Stakes winner and then second to Manchego in her two previous starts, ran her record to 4-for-5 in 2018, with earnings of $117,227 lifetime for Melvin Hartman, David Mc Duffee, and Diamond Creek Racing. *************** In other important news, George Napolitano Jr., the all-time leading horseman in Pocono Downs history, goes so fast that a mere pencil cannot stay with him - it took a check of the USTA computer to show that in Monday's 12th race, his victory with Myidealson N was the 9000th of his top-notch career. "George Nap" becomes the 21st North American-based driver to get to 9000 wins, and ranks #12 among active drivers. The leading driver in North America in 2010 with 753 visits to Victory Lane, Napolitano has won a mind-boggling 29 titles at Pocono - 11 driving win titles (including the last six, and he leads the colony right now), 9 UDR championships (including the last five), and five training win titles. He has also won nine titles "down the Turnpike" at Harrah's Philadelphia - six for sulky victories and three for UDR. George will have his entire family to the track on Saturday night, where he will join with them to be honored in the Hanover Shoe Farms Winners Circle for this milestone triumph. From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

Wolfgang will try to continue his rise among Hambletonian Stakes contenders when he faces nine rivals in Saturday's C$266,000 Goodtimes Stakes at Woodbine Mohawk Park. The Goodtimes is one of the stakes stops on the road to August's $1.2 million Hambletonian, which is the sport's premier race for 3-year-old trotters. Two of the past four winners of the Goodtimes have gone on to capture the Hambletonian, Marion Marauder in 2016 and Trixton in 2014. In addition, last year's winner International Moni won an elimination of the Hambletonian. Saturday's Goodtimes is part of a stakes-filled card at Woodbine Mohawk Park, headlined by the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old male pacers. The night also includes the Armbro Flight for older female trotters, Roses Are Red for older female pacers, and Fan Hanover for 3-year-old female pacers. Wolfgang, who was ranked No. 9 in last week's Road to the Hambletonian, compiled by Meadowlands Racetrack announcer and analyst Ken Warkentin, is among seven Hambletonian-eligible trotters in the Goodtimes. The others are Alarm Detector, Cruising In Style, Hat Trick Habit, Hill Street, Lawmaker, and Missle Hill. Alarm Detector, who was No. 3 in last week's Hambletonian rankings, and Wolfgang each won his Goodtimes elimination. Wolfgang, making his first start of the season, captured his division by 2-3/4 lengths over Lawmaker in a career-best 1:52.2. "I'm very happy with the way he went last week," said Yannick Gingras, who drives Wolfgang for trainer Jimmy Takter. "It was his first time out and he was loaded with trot. I think he did it the right way and I think he's got a big chance." Last year, Wolfgang won three of 10 races and earned $316,275, which ranked fifth among 2-year-old male trotters. The colt's victories included the Matron Stakes and he finished second in the Kentucky Sire Stakes championship and season-ending Valley Victory Stakes. Fourth Dimension, who was last year's Dan Patch Award winner for 2-year-old male trotters and was No. 1 in last week's Road to the Hambletonian, won the Valley Victory. Fourth Dimension is yet to race this year. "I think if I got loose a little earlier in the Valley Victory I could have given Fourth Dimension all he wanted," said Gingras, who has driven Wolfgang in his past four starts. "Even before that, I watched him race and he looked like a horse that could go a long ways. "I thought coming into the year he was probably the best trotter I had to drive for the Hambletonian. Jimmy said all along he was coming back strong. We couldn't be any happier with where he's at right now." Wolfgang, who hails from a family with chef-inspired names, is a son of My MVP out of Summer Savory. He was purchased for $60,000 at the 2016 Lexington Selected Sale and is owned by Brixton Medical Inc., Goran Falk, Hatfield Stables, and breeder Fair Island Farm. Alarm Detector, who was the O'Brien Award winner for best 2-year-old male trotter in Canada, won his Goodtimes elimination by three-quarters of a length over Breeders Crown champion Fiftydallarbill in 1:53.1. Alarm Detector also was making his seasonal debut. "I was okay with it, mile in (1):53, it's getting a little cooler right now at this time and you can train them as much as you want, but it's not like racing," trainer Ben Baillargeon said after the win. "He was ready and up to the task." Alarm Detector, a son of Chapter Seven out of Final Countdown, has won seven of eight career races and earned $237,032. His victories last year included the William Wellwood Memorial at Woodbine Mohawk Park. He was purchased for $110,000 at the 2016 Standardbred Horse Sale and his family includes Dan Patch and O'Brien awards winner Ken Warkentin, who was named in honor of the Meadowlands' announcer. The colt is owned by Thomas Rankin, Elizabeth Rankin, Claude Hamel, and Santo Vena. Following is the field for the Goodtimes Stakes. The connections of Wolfgang and Alarm Detector, as elimination winners, selected their respective post positions. PP-Horse-Driver-Trainer 1-Stormont Ventnor-Phil Hudon-Kevin Benn 2-Hill Street-Jimmy Takter-Jimmy Takter 3-Alarm Detector-Trevor Henry-Benoit Baillargeon 4-Wolfgang-Yannick Gingras-Jimmy Takter 5-Lawmaker-Anthony MacDonald-Jason McGinnis 6-Hat Trick Habit-David Miller-Domenico Cecere 7-Fiftydallarbill-Trace Tetrick-William Crone 8-Run Director-Sylvain Filion-Benoit Baillargeon 9-Missle Hill-Doug McNair-Tony Alagna 10-Cruising In Style-James MacDonald-Kevin McMaster by Ken Weingartner, for the USTA  

MILTON, ON June 8, 2018 - The return of the reigning Canadian and American Horse of the Year highlighted stakes elimination action Friday at Woodbine Mohawk Park. The Armbro Flight for trotting mares and Goodtimes for three-year-old trotting fillies both required two eliminations Friday to kick off a busy stakes weekend. Hannelore Hanover, last year's O'Brien and Dan Patch Award champion, returned to Woodbine Mohawk Park looking to give herself a chance at her third consecutive Armbro Flight title. The six-year-old superstar and driver Yannick Gingras were successful in the opening $35,000 elimination, defeating six rivals in an easy 1:52. 'Hannelore' left from post-six and was parked by the opening-quarter in :27 before clearing to command. The Ron Burke trainee proceeded to reach the half in :56.1 and three-quarters in 1:24.2 before making her :27.3 final-quarter look effortless to win by five and a half lengths. Southwind Tesla finished second, while Caprice Hill and Dream Together rounded out the Superfecta. Checkmate Time was fifth to grab the final spot in next week's final. Hannelore Hanover was two for two on the season going into Friday's elimination. "That's probably the easiest race I'll win all year," said Gingras following the race. "She was wrapped up and did it very easy. She's so solid right now there is no worries, knock on wood, but she's something else." Now a 39-time winner with over $2.7 million earned, Hannelore Hanover is owned by Burke Racing LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Frank Baldachino and J And T Silva Stables LLC. The daughter of Swan For All will be looking for the Armbro Flight three-peat in next Saturday's (June 16) $250,000 final. 'Hannelore' won the 2016 edition in an Canadian Record 1:51 and last year's edition in 1:51.4. As expected, Hannelore Hanover paid $2.10 to win. The second elimination saw another superstar trotting mare find the winner's circle. Emoticon Hanover and Bob McClure was a coast-to-coast front-end winner in 1:52.4. The Luc Blais trainee posted fractions of :27.1, :55.4 and 1:24.1 before trotting home in :28.3 to win by three and a half lengths. Friday's start was the first-time McClure sat behind 'Emoticon' in a race. The young reinsman has been driving this season for Blais and did have his choice of stablemates Emoticon Hanover and Dream Together in the May 21 Miss Versatility Stakes. "I had the option last week and I took (Dream Together), but I knew (Emoticon Hanover) was probably the better of the two," said McClure. "The other mare was race-tight, but this mare is all-class," said McClure is confident in his mare heading into next week's final. "Hannelore is going to be tons the best in there, but my mare did beat her last year, so it is a horse race." Celebrity Ruth, who was the 1/2 favourite, finished second, while Ice Attraction came up the rail to finish third. The final two spots in the Armbro Flight final were secured by Majestic Presence and Barn Bella. A five-year-old daughter of Kadabra, Emoticon Hanover hasn't impressed many during her four qualifiers this season, but she's turned it on when it counts with now two wins in two starts. Owned by Determination, Emoticon Hanover now has 18 career wins and earnings of over $1.3 million. Emoticon Hanover paid $7.70 to win. The Goodtimes for three-year-old trotters featured two $30,000 eliminations and just like the Armbro Flight, driver Gingras was back in the winner's circle following the first elimination. Jimmy Takter trainee Wolfgang was ready to go in his first start of the season, front-stepping to a career-best 1:52.2 victory. Wolfgang and Gingras left hard to claim the lead, posting a :27.2 opener. The son of My Mvp hung up fractions of :56.1 and 1:2 to lead into the lane. Hat Trick Habit, the _ favourite, came first-up from third on the far turn, while Lawmaker tracked in the two-hole. Wolfgang did not give his rivals any chance in the lane and trotted off in _ to win by _ lengths. Lawmaker finished second at 40-1, while Run Director was third. Hat Trick Habit and Stormont Ventnor rounded out the top-five to advance to the June 16 final. "Jimmy told me he trained really good at the farm and I know he didn't show a (1):52 mile, but the day he qualified at The Meadowlands it was a real good mile," said Gingras post-race. "I liked the colt. I raced him a few times last fall and I thought he was a top horse and he showed it tonight." Wolfgang won three of 10 starts last season, banking $316,275 for owners Brixton Medical Inc, Goran Falk, Hatfield Stables and Fair Island Farm Inc. A $2 win ticket on Wolfgang returned $6.20. The second elimination featured a showdown between O'Brien Award winner Alarm Detector and Breeders Crown champion Fiftydallarbill. The two stars finished one-two with Alarm Detector taking the victory in his three-year-old debut. Driven by Trevor Henry, Alarm Detector left strong to grab the lead and that was the winning move. Henry got a soft :29.1 second-quarter to lead by the half in :57.1, while Fiftydallarbill had to angle out first-up from fourth. Alarm Detector trotted a solid :28 third-quarter before finishing up strong in :27.4 to claim the victory. Fiftydallarbill turned in a game effort, closing in on the wrapped up leader at the wire to finish second by three-quarters of a length. Cruising In Style finished third, while Hill Street was fourth. The final qualifier for next week's final was Missle Hill. Trainer Ben Baillargeon has mapped out a plan for Alarm Detector this season and was very pleased with the Chapter Seven colt's season debut. "I was okay with it, mile in (1):53, it's getting a little cooler right now at this time and you can train them as much as you want, but it's not like racing," said Baillargeon. "He was ready and up to the task." Owned by Tom & Elizabeth Rankin, Claude Hamel and Santo Vena, Alarm Detector went six for seven during his rookie season and banked $276,870. Baillargeon hasn't been shy in pointing out what his main focus is for the season. "The game plan is the Hambletonian and hopefully we will get there, but the Hambletonian will be his number six race, so four more starts after (the Goodtimes)." Alarm Detector paid $3.30 to win. Friday's elimination winners earned the right to select their post for their respective finals. Here are the post positions for next Saturday's $250,000 Armbro Flight and $266,000 Goodtimes finals. $250,000 Armbro Flight 1. Caprice Hill 2. Celebrity Ruth 3. Dream Together 4. Emoticon Hanover 5. Hannelore Hanover 6. Checkmate Time 7. Southwind Tesla 8. Majestic Presence 9. Ice Attraction 10. Barn Bella AE: P L Jill $266,000 Goodtimes 1. Stormont Ventnor 2. Hill Street 3. Alarm Detector 4. Wolfgang 5. Lawmaker 6. Hat Trick Habit 7. Fiftydallarbill 8. Run Director 9. Missle Hill 10. Cruising In Style AE: Jula Downton by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications  

WILKES-BARRE PA - Undefeated trotting filly sensation Manchego returns to The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono this coming Tuesday night (June 12), racing in one of four $30,000 divisions of a Pennsylvania All-Stars series event. Manchego, a daughter of Muscle Hill trained by Jimmy Takter for owners Black Horse Racing, John Fielding, and Herb Liverman, went 12-for-12 during her freshman campaign, of course earning divisional honors and bankrolling $873,948. Manchego made her 2018 bow at Pocono on May 21, winning a division of a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes contest in hand, and she is again expected to be the overwhelming favorite from post seven for driver Yannick Gingras. Nixie Volo, recent winner of a Currier and Ives Filly division and a PA Sires contest on the same card as Manchego, draws in against her here, but is stuck with the outside post nine for driver Corey Callahan. The filly who gave Manchego her hardest battle in 2017, the Explosive Matter miss Phaetosive, may be the choice in another division despite also having to overcome the outside nine-hole. Trained and driven by Trond Smedshammer for Purple Haze Stables LLC, Phaetosive was second, beaten only ¾ of a length in the Peaceful Way final last year at Mohawk, and in her 2018 bow she came her back fractions in 54.1 - 26.2 while coming from eighth to miss only two lengths at The Meadowlands. Two Pennsylvania Sires winners, What A Knockout (post one, driver Tim Tetrick) and Piranha Fury (post two, David Miller) will square off in another All-Stars section against Bill's Lady (post six, Corey Callahan), coming off a win in a Currier and Ives Filly division. The other division of Tuesday's stake is headlined by two recent PA Stallion Series winners, Perfect Image (post five, Charlie Norris) and Pembroke Mystery (post seven, Tim Tetrick). From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

The 2017 2-year-old filly pacer of the year, Youaremycandygirl (Yannick Gingras), rebounded from a sixth place finish in her 2018 debut last week to win a leg of the New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) for 3-year-old pacing fillies at Tioga Downs on Sunday (June 3). She won the third division of three divisions that ran Sunday afternoon. All three divisions competed for a purse of $40,600. Youaremycandygirl ($2.90) controlled the race from the start. She went to the first quarter in :27.4. Painted Lady (Scott Zeron) was content to follow her with a pocket trip. Youaremycandygirl led them to the half in :57.0 and three-quarters in 1:23.4. Painted Lady popped the pocket at the top of the stretch and pressured the leader. Gingras asked Youaremycandygirl for more in the stretch and she responded to win in 1:51.1. Painted Lady settled for second. Solitary (Marcus Miller) finished third. Youaremycandygirl is a 3-year-old filly by American Ideal. She is owned by W J Donovan and trained by Ron Burke. She is now one for two as a sophomore filly. She now has 10 wins in her career in just 13 starts. Tell Me A Joke (Jim Morrill Jr.) held on to win the the first division of the NYSS. Tell Me A Joke ($12.80) went right to the lead. The betting favorite I'm Trigger Happy (Scott Zeron) tried to challenge for the lead but backed off and settle for the pocket trip. Tell Me A Joke controlled all the fractions (:28.0, :57.1, 1:24.3, 1:53.2). As they reached the end of the backstretch Newsday (Jim Marohn Jr.) pressured Tell Me A Joke all the way around the final turn. As they reached the stretch I'm Trigger Happy was trapped in the pocket. She squeezed into an opening on the inside but it was too late and she had to settle for second. Jewels Forreal (Matt Kakaley) charged late and fininished third. Tell Me A Joke is a 3-year-old filly by Art Major. She is owned by H A Taylor, S J Taylor and Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc. Trained by Gareth Dowse, it was her third career win. All her wins have come as a 3-year-old. Ubettergo Go (Mark MacDonald) very impressive in the second division of the NYSS. Ubettergo Go ($4.90) took the sophomore fillies in to the first quarter in :26.4. Hurrikane Shorty (Jim Marohn Jr.) followed in the pocket. After hitting the half in :55.1. Pelican Blue Chip (Jim Morrill Jr.) took up the chase first over and was second after Ubettergo Go hit three-quarters in 1:22.0. As they hit the top of the stretch it looked like the only one with a chance to beat Ubettergo Go was Wisdom Tree (Scott Zeron). MacDonald said go and Ubettergo Go simply flew in the stretch winning going away in an eye-popping career best time of 1:50.0. Wisdom Tree was second and Pelican Blue Chip held on for third. Ubettergo Go is a 3-year-old filly by Art Major. Owned Tony Basile, Reginald Pettipas, Ozzie Mackay and trainer Blake Macintosh, it was her second win this year and career victory number five. Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Friday (June 8) starting at 6:15 p.m. For more information go to www.tiogadowns.com John Horne, for Tioga Downs

East Rutherford, NJ  - The 2018 edition of Breakfast With The Babies (BWTB), sponsored by Jules Siegel's Fashion Farms, kicked off on a perfect Saturday morning at The Meadowlands. The skies were clear, the breeze slight and the temperature a comfortable 75 degrees. As has been the case since BWTB began, Hall of Fame trainer Jimmy Takter sent out the first winner of the season. This year it was the highest priced yearling of the 2017 sales season at $480,000 (Lex Select), Beautiful Sin. In a short field of four, Yannick Gingras settled Beautiful Sin in second early as Isolde (Mattias Melander) took the field by the quarter in 29, then brushed her to the front by the 58.4 half. After a rated 30 second third split Gingras let the filly roll a bit through a 28.3 final quarter and she widened out to win by more than six lengths in 1:57.2. Lennart Agren's SRF Stable owns Beautiful Sin (by Muscle Hill from Sina, bred by The Moon Goddesses, Paula Gural and Monica Bencal) and if this morning's performance is any indication, she was a bargain. The Takter / Gingras duo came right back in race 2 with Whispering Oaks and the filly becomes the very first winner for first crop sire Father Patrick. She led all the way, closing out her 1:58 mile with a 29 flat final quarter and won well within herself over Starita (David Miller), by another eagerly anticipated first crop sire in Trixton, who broke early and recovered nicely to be second. Brixton Medical, Herb Liverman and RAW Equine, Inc paid $100,000 (Lex Select) to breeders Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld and Sam Goldband for Whispering Oaks last fall. When Greenshoe, the $330,000 (Lex Select) Father Patrick colt from world champion Designed To Be, cruised around the oval in 1:55 / 27.3 looking like he was jogging and eliciting "Wows" from the veteran observers and various experts in attendance this morning the young sire's legend was begun. Trainer / driver Marcus Melander let Greenshoe go right to the top from post four though even fractions with Hudson River (another Father Patrick colt driven by Takter) following closely by the 1:27.2 three panels. When Melander gave his colt the "green light" he accelerated while continuing to move easily and put some air between himself and his closest rival. It was a very good 1:55. Anders Strom owns Greenshoe via his nom de course of Courant, Inc and was bred by Katz and Libfeld. This year's freshman trotters are a particularly precocious lot as in the very next race Jimmy Takter exposed a lovely Muscle Hill colt named Don't Let Him with a start to finish 1:55 mile, home in 27.4. He was tracked throughout by Gimpanzee (Melander) who made a menacing move in the stretch but could not head Takter's colt. Don't Let Him is a Brittany bred, was sold for $80,000 (Lex Select) and is owned by that nursery along with Christina Takter, John Fielding and Herb Liverman. The highest priced yearling ever sold in Sweden at $325,000 (USD) is here in the US racing for Courant, Inc and the Muscle Hill colt Green Manalishi S was a winner at first asking for Mattias Melander in 1:57. Taking the lead just past the quarter, Green Manalishi cruised through easy numbers then dug in nicely when Gerris Trix (Takter) ranged up alongside mid-stretch with a28.4 end to the mile. Colt pacers took the stage with the sixth race with first crop sires Captaintreacherous and Sweet Lou both represented. Ray Schnittker put his "Captain" colt Latissimus Hanover on the lead and set a fair pace through a 1:26.2 three quarters. Following in the pocket was Jimmy Takter (who else) with his Sweet Lou x Blood Diamond colt Blood Money, fanning out as they straightened up and ground past by a length through the 27.2 end to the 1:53.4 mile. Zero Tolerance (D. Miller) split that pair to be second. Adam Bowden's Diamond Creek Farm bred and owns the colt as Diamond Creek Racing. Diamond Creek came right back with another imposing homebred in Blacklight, trained by Takter and driven by Gingras who was a 1:56.2 winner. He's a big colt by Somebeachsomewhere from the champion mare I Luv The Nitelife and handled the assignment like a veteran. Qualifying pacers picked up with the eighth race where a very good older horse, Delta Winner, held off a very good 3 year-old in Stay Hungry. In what amounted to a match race, Brett Miller cut the mile with Delta Winner while Doug McNair sat pocketed with Stay Hungry and when they crossed the wire in 1:49.1 after a 26.3 stretch duel it was Delta the winner. Mark Silva trains for Jeff Snyder. Fourth Dimension is right at the top of the Road To The Hambletonian and he looked the part today, winning a hard fought stretch battle over the good 4 year-old mare Dream Baby Dream (David Miller) in 1:53.3 / 27.1 for Brian Sears. Fourth Dimension closed out a nice day for the Melander barn and moves on to the sophomore classics for owner Courant, Inc. Charts are available on the Meadowlands website. Live racing tonight at The Meadowlands begins at 7:15pm with the Jerseyfest Food Truck Mash-up leading the promotions. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands Saturday night card features three series finals and the great Foiled Again's quest to reach 100 career wins. The $47,000 "Escort" final (race 6) pits eight 3-year-old colts & geldings with the very fast but green Thinkbig Dreambig the 9-5 choice on Dave Brower's morning line in just his second career start. Sent away as the 3-5 choice in his maiden voyage last week, Thinkbig Dreambig was ranging up toward the leader in mid-stretch but doing so somewhat erratically then suffered interference in an eventual 4th placed third finish. Trainer Jimmy Takter will take the lines tonight for owners Brixton Medical, Fielding, Anderberg and Falk. KJ's Justine has come to hand in the Rainbow Blue series for sophomore pacing fillies and is the favorite for the $42,500 final (race 7), having swept the two preliminary legs including a 1:52.1 lifetime record last week. She races out of the Linda Toscano barn for owner Ken Jacobs and Eric Abbatiello drives tonight from post 3. The $32,500 Hot Lead final (race 8) for older pacing horses and geldings could be a dogfight and Ballerat Boomerang comes into it off a crushing 5 ¾ length win over the field in leg two. Driver Vinnie Ginsburg put up a perfect steer last week, providing a cover trip and when tipped, the "Boomerang" took flight by the field. He'll begin from post position 8 tonight for Nick Surick who trains for Engel Stable of Illinois and JL Benson Stable. The ageless war-horse Foiled Again has certainly had a storybook career for trainer Ron Burke and partners Weaver Bruscemi and the JJK Stables. Now facing mandatory retirement after this season at age 14, he is the richest Standardbred in history with a career bankroll of $7,573,178. It has taken 309 starts to get there with his win total stuck on 99 since January, so after a few sub-par efforts Burke prescribed a freshening of four months leading up to tonight's return. He'll face a field of six rivals in the fifth race from post two with Jim Pantaleano becoming the 36th driver over his 309 start career. All of the guaranteed wagers are in place for the card and the last race Super Hi-5 Jackpot carry-over has eclipsed $236,000. You may download free program pages here. Post time is 7:15 pm. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands  

When harness racing driver Yannick Gingras heard about the upcoming Trotting 4 Charity event, he knew immediately he wanted to participate. Gingras' brother-in-law, Brian Michonski, lost a battle with pancreatic cancer in 2014 and Gingras will drive in Brian's memory to raise money for the National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation. Trotting 4 Charity, organized by TrotCast's Ryan Macedonio, will be held May 18-20 at racetracks throughout North America. Participating drivers and trainers will wear a custom-made replica jersey of their own colors, with their selected charity logo displayed on the jersey. During the weekend, drivers will race in their jersey. After the event, auctions will be held for fans to bid on the jerseys and all proceeds from winning bids will be donated to the corresponding charities. The mission of the National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation is to deliver unwavering support for patients and families fighting pancreatic cancer. It was founded in 2009. Michonski, a Maine resident who was 50 when he passed away, worked in his family's masonry business and was active in sports and the community throughout his life. He played baseball and ice hockey and coached both sports at the youth level. He also was an avid fisherman and outdoorsman and loved to travel with his family. "This is always a charity that is important to me," Gingras, who is among 40 horsemen and horsewomen participating in the event, said about the National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation. "I'm always willing to help out and when I heard about (Trotting 4 Charity) I thought it was a great idea and wanted to get involved. "This brings attention to these charities and the work they do, which is very important. It also brings attention to harness racing. It's just a good thing for everyone." Following is a list of drivers and trainers participating in Trotting 4 Charity, with their corresponding charities. Allan Davis - Nemours Children's Hospital Andrew Harris - The Breast Cancer Research Foundation Andy McCarthy - St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - Science and Medicine Andy Miller - Pacing For The Cure Bob McClure - Children's Wish Foundation of Canada Brady Galliers - Ronald McDonald House Charities Brian Burton - Potomac Valley Boxing Association Chris Page - Jimmy V Foundation Colin Kelly - Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation Corey Callahan - Harness Horse Youth Foundation Declan Donoway - St. Jude Children's Hospital Dolores Basilone Case - American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Doug McNair - Autism Speaks Emily Hay - Leukemia Research Foundation Frank Milby - Talbot Special Riders, Inc. J Bradley Harris - Breast Cancer Research Foundation James MacDonald - Canadian Cancer Society Jim Morrill - Wounded Warrior Project Julie Miller - Pacing For The Cure Louis-Philippe Roy - Fondation Rêves d'enfants, Québec - Children's Wish Foundation, Quebec Marc Campbell - IWK Foundation Marcus Miller - Dogs For Better Lives Matt Kakaley - Marley's Mission Montrell Teague - St. Jude Pat Berry - St. Jude Robert Shepherd - Autsim Speaks Roger Plante - Ronald McDonald House Russell Foster - Freedom Hill Horse Rescue Ryan Macedonio - Big Brothers Big Sisters Scott Young - Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Scott Zeron - Standardbred Retirement Foundation - Adoptahorse.org Sean Bier - Cardiac Kids Simon Allard - Wigs For Kids Timmy Offutt - Maryland International Harvest Foundation Tom Jackson - Lung Cancer Research Foundation Travis Henry - Breast Cancer Research Foundation Trevor Henry - The War Amps Tyler Buter - Wounded Warriors Tyler Smith - St. Jude Yannick Gingras - National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation Pictures of each jersey will be available at trotting4charity.com or trotcast.com. Ken Weingartner

CHESTER PA - Windsun Glory, a mare looking to be on her way to better things, posted her second straight victory at Harrah's Philadelphia on Friday afternoon, posting a clear victory in the $18,000 distaff pacing mares feature at the riverside oval. Driver Yannick Gingras moved the Mach Three mare to the lead in front of the stands and held sway from there, stepping home in 55.2 to equal her 1:51.3 winning clocking of last week. Princess Fabulosa, beset by almost every form of bad racing luck known to man and horse - a second-tier draw, early interference, a shuffling to last, a three-wide move most of the backstretch continuing to two-wide on the turn - still came on to be a very good second, 2¼ lengths behind the winner. Ron Burke, the leading trainer at the young meet, conditions the winner of $260,665 for Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, J&T Silva Stables LLC, and Lawrence Karr. Windsun Glory went over the quarter-million dollar plateau winning last week; the Camluck mare Cousin Mary did it today ($250,240) in the $14,500 distaff subfeature, and she went even faster than "Glory," taking a new mark of 1:51. Corey Callahan, who like Tim Tetrick had three sulky successes on the day, reserved Cousin Mary off a contested pace, made one decisive backstretch brush to the lead, and then left the field in her wake for trainer Andrew Harris and owner Jeffrey Williamson. A special Kentucky Derby Saturday card will be featured at Harrah's tomorrow at 12:40, with the inaugural events of the summerlong $1.8 million Great Northeast Open Series headlining - a $30,000 trot with the likes of Rock Of Cashel, Opulent Yankee, and Melady's Monet, and a $30,000 mares pace including Nike Franco N, Lispatty, and Darlinonthebeach.   Jerry Connors

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, March 6, 2017—After 308 career starts and more than $7.5 million in earnings. Foiled Again is taking the fifth. It’s not that he’s suddenly clamming up. Rather, the sport’s richest-ever equine is taking his fifth shot at a milestone 100th career victory. Foiled Again won the automated draw ahead of a Thursday evening (March 8th) Yonkers Raceway return in the $20,000, eighth race. Yannick Gingras is reunited with one of his more popular dates as the 14-year-old Dragon Again gelding goes after triple figures in the win column. The pacer, fresh off his starring role in a well-received—and oft-repeated—local news (WCBS-TV) feature, wound up in a dead-heat for fourth in his latest effort two weeks removed from this upcoming start. He’s raced the same class level (non-winners of $20,000 in last five starts) in all five seasonal tries, including a successful 2018 debut with George Brennan driving.  Foiled Again’s last dance with Gingras saw the duo just falter after the cutting the mile over a ‘good’ surface. Ironically, his last three starts have come over off tracks, and if the weatherman is correct, the remnants of a late-season snowstorm could have the going a bit moist Thursday night as well.   Despite outdrawing his seven rivals, Foiled Again shall have to earn it in a race with some class-dippers as well as those exiting high-price claimers.   Frank Drucker

Orlando, FL --- The connections of Hannelore Hanover need to make room for several more trophies. Hannelore Hanover, who last year at age 5 produced the fastest mile in history by a female trotter and defeated male rivals in both the Breeders Crown and Maple Leaf Trot, received three Dan Patch Awards on Sunday, including the night’s grand prize, Horse of the Year. In addition to being named Horse of the Year by the U.S. Harness Writers Association, Hannelore Hanover got trophies for Trotter of the Year and best older female trotter during the Dan Patch Awards banquet at Rosen Shingle Creek resort. Hannelore Hanover was named Horse of the Year on 95 ballots, outdistancing 3-year-old filly trotter Ariana G, with 15 votes, and 2-year-old filly trotter Manchego, with 12. Downbytheseaside, a 3-year-old colt who was named Pacer of the Year, had eight votes for Horse of the Year. In balloting for Trotter of the Year, Hannelore Hanover had 100 votes, while Ariana G had 16 and Manchego 15. Earlier this month, Hannelore Hanover received the O’Brien Award for Canada’s Horse of the Year in addition to getting her second consecutive award as best trotting mare. Hannelore Hanover is the first trotting mare to be named the Dan Patch Award Horse of the Year since Moni Maker in 1999. She is the first Horse of the Year Award winner for trainer Ron Burke and the Burke Brigade. “Since 1954, I’ve been walking around picking up papers, trying to find something,” an emotional Mickey Burke Sr., the patriarch of the Burke Stable, told the crowd at the awards banquet. “I found it. The winner for the fastest trotting mare that ever lived. I’m so proud of her. “She’s just a dream horse.” Hannelore Hanover, a daughter of Swan For All out of the mare High Sobriety, won 10 of 17 races last season and earned $1.04 million. She became the fastest female trotter in history when she won the Allerage Farms Open Trot in 1:49.2 at Lexington’s Red Mile and was the first mare to beat the boys in the Breeders Crown Open Trot since Moni Maker in 1998. Other wins included the Maple Leaf Trot and Armbro Flight Stakes. She is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, the partnership of Mark Weaver and Mike Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino, and J&T Silva Stables. Yannick Gingras was her regular driver. “She’s just an amazing mare,” Mickey Burke Jr. said. “You don’t get many of these.” Downbytheseaside was named Pacer of the Year with 93 votes. Youaremycandygirl, a filly who was a 2-year-old last year, finished second with 23 votes while 3-year-old colt Fear The Dragon was third with seven. A total of eight pacers received at least one vote. Retired to stallion duty at the end of last season, Downbytheseaside finished his 3-year-old campaign with a four-race win streak on his way to leading the sport with $1.60 million in purses. The colt’s victories included the Messenger Stakes, Progress Pace, Carl Milstein Memorial, and Art Rooney Pace. He was trained by Brian Brown and owned by Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo, and Diamond Creek Racing. Chris Page, Brian Sears, and David Miller all guided the horse to stakes wins. “We loved this horse as a 2-year-old,” Brown said. “When he got to race and we really started to find out what he was, for him to come back this year and prove it again, and overcome all the adversity he went through was special. “And for all the owners, it was so much fun when this horse did well. His last race, he won, but you’re kind of disappointed it’s all over. After his last race we sat and reminisced about the whole year. It’s so good that all those owners got to experience this.” Other honorees Sunday included Brown, for Trainer of the Year and Good Guy Award winner; Gingras for Driver of the Year; Bruce Trogdon’s Emerald Highlands Farm for Owner of the Year; and Hanover Shoe Farms for Breeder of the Year. Horses recognized in addition to Hannelore Hanover and Downbytheseaside were divisional champions Manchego, 2-year-old female trotter; Fourth Dimension, 2-year-old male trotter; Ariana G, 3-year-old female trotter; What The Hill, 3-year-old male trotter; Marion Marauder, older male trotter; Youaremycandygirl, 2-year-old female pacer; Lost In Time, 2-year-old male pacer; Blazin Britches, 3-year-old female pacer; Pure Country, older female pacer; and Keystone Velocity, older male pacer. For additional information about the divisional champions, click here.   Ken Weingartner Media Relations Manager U.S. Trotting Association

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – As Bill Belichick and Tom Brady prepare for their big game on Sunday, another dynamic duo was at work Saturday night at the Meadowlands, as the team of harness racing driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke scored in the track’s $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacers with Starznheaven by a nose over Bettor’s Edge in 1:50.2 in 28-degree cold that included a minus one-second track variant. Gingras, who also won the Friday night feature with trotter Theresademoninme, was ultra-patient with Starznheaven, who was sent off by the Big M faithful at a big 22-1 on the tote board, sitting fifth to the half as Western Joe and Bettor’s Edge exchanged stints on the front end. The Ross Croghan-trained Hug The Wind N, made the 2-1 betting choice off a lone North American win one week ago with far lesser foes, was moving first-over past the five-eighths as Starznheaven picked up cover. Bettor’s Edge and Hug The Wind N were on even terms at the head of the stretch, but the backfield was very much in motion. Gingras tipped Starznheaven off his cover in mid-stretch, Bettor’s Edge dug in dead game, Hug The Wind N was crisp between rivals while Endeavor and Awesomeness were flying on the outside. At the wire, it Starznheaven prevailing over Bettor’s Edge and Hug The Wind N with Endeavor and Awesomeness cashing the final two checks. The quintet were within three-quarters-of-a-length of each other at the wire. Starznheaven returned $47.80 as the sixth choice in the wagering in the eight-horse field and now has 24 wins in 113 lifetime starts for owners Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, Emond and Karr. WEEKEND WARRIORS: Gingras won eight races over the two weekend racing programs, teaming up to win six of those with Burke. … Jim Marohn Jr. had a three-bagger on the Saturday card. … Favorites won 11 of the 26 weekend races (42.3 percent). A LITTLE MORE: For the second straight night, the 20-Cent Survivor Pick 10 sported a total pool of over $20,000 and a payoff of over $17,000. … The Pick 4 saw $85,779 in wagers and a payoff of $1,351.30. … The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, bloating the carryover to $92,461. … All-source wagering was $2,757,068. … Racing resumes at the Big M Friday night at 6:35 p.m. ANOTHER STORY OF SURVIVAL AT BIG M AS PICK 10 RETURNS 17K AGAIN The 20-Cent Survivor Pick 10 wager appears to have hit its stride as the Meadowlands’ newest bet saw a total pool of over $20,000 for a second straight night.  What it also saw for a second straight night was a big single-ticket winner, as Saturday night’s expert player, wagering into the Oregon Express hub, cashed in for a cool $17,019.78, “settling” for $290 less than Friday night’s winner. By Dave Little, Meadowlands Media Relations

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, January 30, 2018 — “He helped take me to the next level as a harness racing driver.” Such were the words of Yannick Gingras, who takes a seat behind Foiled Again as the sport’s richest-ever equine is invading Yonkers Raceway in search of his 100th career victory. Foiled Again returns to the Westchester wars Thursday night (Feb. 1st), leaving from post position No. 5 in the $20,000, eighth-race pace. The 14-year-old Dragon Again gelding makes the 306th purse start of his $7.5 million career. “I can’t say enough about him,” Gingras said. “There were seven or eight seasons, starting when he as a 4-year-old, when he was among the best in the sport, which to me is amazing. “He’s not the biggest or the fastest, but I’ve never driven one that had his desire…and the way he wins, it’s usually a rough trip. I don’t think he’s ever been second-over. He’d rather grind his way into it and battle. Not to mention he’s smarter than the average bear. “He never exerts himself until he has to,” Gingras said. “If you’d allow it, he’d go a second quarter in 35 seconds, but right around the five-eighths or three-quarters, when he hears or sees someone coming, he picks up the bit and the switch goes on.” Foiled Again won his 99th race here in his mid-January, final-season debut, but his first crack at Century City did not go well, as in a non-factor sixth. George Brennan was the driver for both efforts.  “That’s another thing about him,” Gingras said. “Some horses, if they race poorly, it seem to affect them for a month. ‘Foiled’…nothing seems to bother him. “It would be fitting to do it here (Yonkers). He’s won the (George Morton) Levy Series twice (2009-10) and he always gets around the track well, probably because he rides the left line just enough”. “I can’t lie, I hope I’m the one who gets him to 100,” Gingras said. “I told (co-owner/trainer) Ronnie (Burke) to try and schedule him when I can drive him. “I’m looking forward to seeing him Thursday. He’s just been such a big part of the my career.” Frank Drucker  

Hightstown, NJ --- Yannick Gingras’ focus is on winning races, not harness racing awards, but when you win races like he did in 2017 it’s no surprise when recognition follows. Gingras drove four horses last year that captured Dan Patch Award divisional honors, including the three horses ranked at the top of the season’s final Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown poll: No. 1 Hannelore Hanover, No. 2 Ariana G, and No. 3 Manchego. The remaining Dan Patch winner, Youaremycandygirl, was ranked seventh. He led the sport in purses for the fourth consecutive year, with $12.9 million, and topped the driver standings on the Grand Circuit. His Grand Circuit victories included four Breeders Crown finals, the Hambletonian Oaks (for a record-extending fourth consecutive year), the Maple Leaf Trot, and Little Brown Jug. All totaled, Gingras won 33 races worth at least $100,000 last season and did it with 16 different horses. And when it was all said and done, Gingras received his second Driver of the Year Award from the U.S. Harness Writers Association. His previous honor came in 2014. “It’s always nice, there’s no doubt,” Gingras said about the award. “Going into the year, it’s not what I’m looking to get. I’m trying to win the big races and stay healthy. But it’s nice recognition. It means you had a good year and the horses had a good year. “You go on the track and try to do your job,” he added. “I was lucky this year that the horses I drove stayed healthy. That’s the main thing.” There were numerous memorable moments for Gingras last year. In addition to winning his fourth Hambletonian Oaks, with Ariana G, he guided Hannelore Hanover to the fastest mile by a female trotter in history, 1:49.2 at Lexington’s Red Mile, and piloted Youaremycandygirl to the fastest mile ever by a 2-year-old female pacer, 1:50, also at the Red Mile. Ariana G, Hannelore Hanover, Youaremycandygirl, and Manchego all won their respective Breeders Crown finals, with Manchego becoming the first undefeated Breeders Crown 2-year-old female trotting champion in history. It was a rewarding weekend for Gingras, who said he never felt pressure with Ariana G, Hannelore Hanover, or Manchego other than at the Breeders Crown because he wanted to keep potential Horse of the Year honors alive for all three of the horses. “Going into the Breeders Crown I definitely did feel a little pressure on those three,” Gingras said. “I love all three of them in different ways and all three are special to me. You want all three of them to have the best shot at winning the Horse of the Year. You don’t want to come to a point where you win with two of them and one of them you mess up the drive. “It’s one thing if they get beat because they’re sick or some other horse is better and beats them. But it’s another thing to lose the race and maybe lose a chance for those owners to have a Horse of the Year because of my own mistake. Getting it done with all three of them was definitely very special. They got the job done. They did the work. But I put them in position to win and they all three did it.” As for which of the three should receive Horse of the Year, which will be announced at the Dan Patch Awards banquet Feb. 25 in Orlando, Gingras had a simple solution. “Personally, I hope it’s a triple dead-heat,” he said. “I think all three are very special.” With the horsepower Gingras has returning this year, the 38-year-old Quebec native could be looking forward to another strong season. “I’m really happy with the way (2017) went,” said Gingras, who was the sport’s Rising Star Award winner in 2003 and has won 6,672 races and $157 million in purses lifetime. “Hopefully we have a couple more like that.” by Ken Weingartner, USTA Media Relations Manager 

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