For Opinion, click here for View from the Racetrack Grandstand

Friday, March 24, 2017

Action All Day at The Meadowlands

East Rutherford, NJ - The Meadowlands has a long day in store for horseplayers on Saturday with the $30 million Dubai World Cup card simulcast from half-way around the world opening the doors at 8:30 in the morning, an important handicapping contest all afternoon and a dozen live races covering the evening hours.

The live races are a mixed bag with competitive fields and guaranteed horizontal wagers to hold the interest of the wagering faithful. 

Pacing horses square off in the featured seventh for a purse of $18,000 where Millenium Wheel seeks his third straight since being shipped to The Meadowlands by trainer Joe Hundertpfund, Jr. Driver Andy Miller has worked out up close trips for Millenium Wheel in both prior Meadowlands scores and is back in the sulky from post eight for owners William Sartin and Mark Salerno on Saturday.

The competition is deep with Chevals Clivesdale who was third beaten just a neck in the class last week offering a price from post one, The Rock fits well against these, Winwood Mac is making his seasonal bow and brings a strong stakes resume from the mid-west and the accomplished New Zealand invader Our Sky Major makes his Meadowlands debut from the outside.

Throughout the day, Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment will provide horseplayers with one of their first opportunities to qualify for the 2018 NTRA National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) presented by Racetrack Television Network, STATS Race Lens and Treasure Island with a qualifying event. The Meadowlands qualifier will offer three guaranteed seats to the NHC .

You may enter for a shot at the 60 Second Wagering Spree by signing up at the Players Club.

Post time for the live is 7:15 p.m.


YONKERS’ FRIDAY PICK 5 FEATURES $4,400 CARRYOVER

BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, March 23, 2017—A friendly reminder from Yonkers Raceway that Friday evening’s (March 24th) Pick 5 wager starts with a carryover of $4,467.45.  


The Pick 5 is a 50-cent base wager comprising races 7 through 11 (for programs with at least 11 races…if not, then it goes as races 6 through 10).  It has no consolation payoff, meaning if no one selects all five winners (as was the case Thursday night), the entire pool (minus takeout) moves to the next racing program. 

UPCOMING YONKERS’ WEEK LED BY FINALS OF PETTICOAT, SAGAMORE HILL SERIES

BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Friday, March 24, 2017—A pair of series finals share next week’s marquee, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $61,000 Petticoat (Monday night, March 27) and $61,800 Sagamore Hill (Tuesday night, March 28).

The series were open to 3- and 4-year-old pacers who are/were non-winners of four races or $40,000 through last Dec. 1.

As luck—and the open draw—would have it, Cousin Mary (Jordan Stratton) partakes of the pylons as she goes after Petticoat series sweep in Monday’s eighth race. The 4-year-old daughter of Camluck, Ontario-owned by Jeffrey Richardson and trained by Andrew Harris, was a sharp, two-move winner a week ago (series- and life-best 1:54.1) after a pair of solid, open-length winners.

“She knows where the wire is,” Stratton said of the lass who’s 6-for-8 this season “She’s surprised, me, but in a good way.”

Northern Soiree (Matt Kakaley, post 8) was the only other multiple-prelim winner, though she obviously needed better help with the pills. The 4-year-old Western Ideal miss, with four wins in eight seasonal starts, is owned by Seth Rosenberg Racing and trained by Scott Blackler.

A Crafty Lady (Dan Dube, post 7), after missing the opening round of this series, drilled her foes last week. The 4-year-old Mach Three miss is owned by Bob Hamather and trained by Rene Allard.

Angels Rockn Pink (Mark MacDonald, post 2), Vintage Babe (Yannick Gingras, post 3), Real Diva (George Brennan, post 4), Rei’s Star Cross (Jim Marohn Jr., post 5) and St. Kitts (Jason Bartlett, post 6)  round out the field.

Tuesday night’s finale of the Sagamore Hill, going as the sixth race, is a showdown among the troika of Prejudice (Stratton, post 1), Never Say Never N (Bartlett, post 2) and Awesomeness (Scott Zeron, post 5).

            While each swept their pair of series legs (one round was snowed out), Awesomeness may have been a bit more visually impressive than the other pair. The 4-year-old Mach Three gelding, owned by Martin Scharf and trained by Aaron Lambert, wired his foes (at 1-20) to begin this series, then won first-up a week ago in (1:53.3)   

            “He’s apparently been good from Day One,” Zeron said. “There’s no bottom to him, he seems to get over the track well and he’s very simple to drive.” Awesomeness enters Tuesday with six consecutive wins (all at odds-on), including a sweep of Woodbine’s Snowshoe Series.

The remainder of the Tribute to Teddy Roosevelt includes Sure Fired Bet (Gingras, post 3), Ideal Son (Brennan, post 4), Wishawasagigolo (Dube, post 6, coupled with Prejudice), Artmagic (Brent Holland, post 7) and Stirling Escort (Kakaley, post 8).

Each series also includes its respective $30,000 consolation.  

HANNAH MILLER; BOB KRIVELIN; NAADA WINNERS AT YONKERS RACEWAY

     By john manzi for NAADA

After the first leg of the long standing NAADA Trotting Series was snowed-out last Thursday at Monticello Raceway the 2017 edition got underway with two divisions at Yonkers on March 23 and when the dust had settled  Hannah Miller and Bob Krivelin each emerged victorious in their respective $6000 splits.

Off her award winning 2016 season “Hurricane Hannah” showed that she knows where the winners circle is by reining the Chris Marino-trained Winwood Scout to a gate-to-wire 2:00.1 victory in her division.

That victory came on the heels of Hannah’s stunning 1:52.4 triumph last week at the Meadowlands which established a new world standard for the fastest mile ever driven by an amateur driver.

In tonight’s contest Ms. Miller took no prisoners and set sails for the lead from the pole position. She and Linwood Scout were alone on the front-end in a :29.1 clocked first quarter and from there it was catch me of you can. And not surprisingly, nobody could as Winwood Scout  rambled on to a 2-1/2 length victory in a  2:00.1 clocking over Dr. John Kokinos’s Sim Brown. Bob Hechkoff took home the show dough with The Franchise.

“Tonight was the second time that I drove Winwood Scout for Chris (Marino). Last year at Saratoga I finished second with him and tonight we got away with reasonable fractions and he was strong throughout the mile and we won rather handily,“  Hannah said via telephone after her driving victory. “He’s a real nice horse to drive.”

The winner is owned by Howard Jacobs and for “Hurricane Hannah” it was her second driving victory of the fledgling season and her 75th in just 256 lifetime starts,

The other division  was also a wire to wire victory for Permanent Joy and driver Bob Krivelin. After stealing a 1:01 first half Peter Kleinhans and Toss Cartwright kept the pressure on Permanent Joy but they fell a neck short at the wire and finished second in the 2:00.2 mile. Tropical Storm Bi  was two lengths behind the leaders at the wire and finished third.


Permanent Joy is owned by Krivelin’s Hero Stables and trained by Krivelin. For the food purveyor it marked his 204th career driving victory.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Cal Expo Saturday Advance

Barbarian has 10 post for Open Pace
By Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness

Barbarian, in razor-sharp form with a hat trick in tow, will now be asked to do his work from the assigned No. 10 post position in Saturday night’s Open Pace at Cal Expo.

There will be 12 races decided under the Watch and Wager LLC banner and things will get underway at 6:15 p.m.  The Open Pace occupies the eighth-race slot on the card and there will also be a pair of California Sire Stakes for 3-year-old pacers going as non-betting contests before the regular card.

Barbarian is a 6-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere out of the Western Ideal mare Rightous Renee who carries the banner of Robert Orr, is conditioned by Sparky Clarke and will once again have Luke Plano at the controls.

The hard-hitting performer was 7-2 when he made every pole a winning one in the February 24 Open as Plano was able to carve out the fractions without challenge and came to the line with four and a half-lengths on his nearest rival in a sparkling 1:52 4/5 mile.

In his March 10 tally, Barbarian left from the outside slot in a field of seven and was dispatched as the 6-5 favorite. Once again they were able to set the tune up front, this time with fairly modest splits, and held safe by a neck over a fast-finishing Doc’s Deal that evening.

In his most recent appearance, the Clarke colorbearer was dispatched as the even-money choice and once again did no disappoint as he made every pole a winning one in a 1:53 2/5 mile. It will be interesting to see how things shake out now that he has the testing No. 10 slot.

Taking him on this weekend are Allymx’sliventexas from the Bob Johnson barn, the Chip Lackey-trained pair of Why Ask Why and Doc’s Deal; Lodi Machette Man from the Kathleen Plested barn; and the Lino Pacheco-conditioned Bettormeboy.

Reduced takeout wagers offer great value

There are two bets here each night that come with a reduced 16 percent takeout rate – the 50-cent Pick 5 on the first five events and the 20-cent Pick 4 on the penultimate four races on the program. The latter also features a $40,000 guaranteed gross pool.

Last Friday night, despite the Pick 4 kicking off with Barbarian proving a punctual even-money favorite in the Open Pace, three nice-priced winners followed and the 20-cent ticket returned a whopping $32,756.

To put things in perspective, using the normal takeout rate, the Pick 4 would have returned $29,246, a difference of a cool $3,510. Now that’s value.

Driver Chip Lackey had a lot to do with that healthy payoff, as he piloted Cenalta Diesel ($29) and Cantholdmebackmack ($17) for trainers Edwin Quevedo and Lino Pacheco, respectively in the two middle races.

The icing on the cake came when David Siegel guided V Mack to a $46 upset for trainer George Reider in the final leg, also triggering a large exacta, trifecta and superfecta in the process.

Whether favorites, longshots or a mix of those complete the Pick 4 and Pick 5, you are assured of getting maximum value with that reduced takeout in place.

Jump right in, the pool is fine.






YONKERS, EMPIRE CITY BETS TO OFFER DUBAI WORLD CUP ADVANCE WAGERING

BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, March 23, 2017—Yonkers Raceway and its ADW portal, Empire City Bets, are offering advance wagering for Saturday’s (March 25) Dubai World Cup program.

Beginning Friday (March 24), the Raceway shall accept wagers for the last four races (see schedule below) of the World Cup program. Those same four races, culminated by the $10 million Cup (featuring Arrogate), are available for in-house wagering Saturday, with selected mutuel windows opening at 10 AM (and free coffee).

Empire City Bets is offering advance wagering for the entire World Cup program, again beginning Friday. Please visit www.empirecitybets.com for details.     

The entire roster of races includes…



Race
Post Time Dubai
Post Time UK
Post Time ET
Race 1
Godolphin Mile (Group 1)
3:45pm
11:45am
7:45am
Race 2
Kahayla Classic (Group 1 Arabian)
4:15pm
12:15pm
8:15am
Race 3
Dubai Gold Cup (Group 1)
4:50pm
12:50pm
8:50am
Race 4
UAE Derby (Group 2)
5:25pm
1:25pm
9:25am
Race 5
Al Quoz Sprint (Group 1)
6:00pm
2:00pm
10:00am
Race 6
Dubai Golden Shaheen (Group 1)
6:35pm
2:35pm
10:35am
Race 7
Dubai Turf (Group 1)
7:30pm
3:30pm
11:30am
Race 8
Dubai Sheema Classic (Group 1)
8:05pm
4:05pm
12:05pm
Race 9
Dubai World Cup (Group 1)
8:45pm
4:45pm
12:45pm
 
-30-


Icommandmyspirit Leads Meadowlands Friday Feature

East Rutherford, NJ - Live racing returns to The Meadowlands on a Friday evening card composed of eleven races.

Pacing mares populate the featured seventh race where reigning queen of the class Icommandmyspirit faces several Yonkers shippers who seek to dethrone her.

Icommandmyspirit made a rapid ascent up the Meadowlands class ladder, having won three of her last four starts beginning with a NW $5,000 Last 5 win on February 17 through a win against this NW $15,000 Last 5 class on March 10. Jimmy Maron, Jr has steered her in each of those wins and drives for trainer John Bavosi and owner Cheryl Costello from post six on Friday.

The competition is led by I Know It All who shows competitive lines against the Yonkers Open types along with Abbijade Hanover and Mystical Nectar, both winners in their last at Ol' Hilltop.

Free program pages for the Late Pick 4 are just a click away, compliments of The Meadowlands and Trackmaster.

Off the track,  March Madness continues in Victory Sports Bar for the next few weekends. 

Post time is 7:15 p.m.


Sandy De Vie, Deliciouslynaughty Share Buffalo Spotlight

by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway

HAMBURG, N.Y. --- Sandy De Vie made it three straight victories while a stubborn Deliciouslynaughty was just good all around as the pair shared top honors in the co-featured $8,200 paces for the mares at Buffalo Raceway on Wednesday night (March 22).

Sandy De Vie ($5.80) was the quickest of the two main events, going 1:57.1 over the fast track while Deliciouslynaughty ($14.20) went gate-to-wire in 1:58.1.

It was also an impressive night for drivers Jim Morrill Jr., Larry Stalbaum and trainer Kim Asher. Morrill Jr. finished with five victories, Stalbaum had four wins while Asher had four go to the winner's circle.

In the opener on the 12-race program, Deliciouslynaughty paced straight to the lead, using fractions of 29.1, 58.4 and 1:28.4. 

While enjoying the front end trip, Deliciouslynaughty (Larry Stalbaum) knew there were going to be challengers in the drive to the finish. 

Dontch Remember, who was hung out to dry most of the mile, tried in vain to collar the determined Deliciouslynaughty (Jim Morrill Jr.) but couldn't get any closer than 1-1/2 lengths and had to settle for second. Scarlet N Silk (David McNeight III) took third.

Owned by Stalbaum and trained by Asher, Deliciouslynaughty (Mach Three-Naught Enough Hare) has now posted three wins in 11 starts in 2017, earning $19,822 and $434,367 lifetime.

Sandy De Vie used a first over trip and turned back Who Says That (John Cummings Jr.) by 3/4 lengths.

With Letsgosomewhere setting the early tempo, Morrill Jr. started his march with Sandy De Vie to the lead just before the half mile marker.

Enjoying a two length advantage at the top of the stretch, Sandy De Vie had no issues in the lane as Who Says That took place position while Looney Dune (Ben McNeil) found the show spot.

Co-owned by Michael Torcello and Samuel Smith and trained by Gerry Sarama, Sandy De Vie (Mach Three-On The Beach) is a 4-year-old mare that has won $10,944 this season and $41,921 in her young career.

Also on the card, trainer Bo Sowers registered a double.

Racing will continue on Friday night at 5 p.m. with 10 races scheduled to go to the post.


For more information including the latest news, upcoming promotions, race replays and results, go to www.buffaloraceway.com

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Cal Expo Friday Advance

Kickinitwithkohler saves her best for last
By Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness

Trainer Kennedy Lindsey compares his 5-year-old trotting mare Kickinitwithkohler to a locomotive when saying, ”She doesn’t have any gate speed, but she just keeps on building and building up as the races goes on and then comes at the end.”

The Illinois-bred daughter of Southwind Breeze races for Tonight’s The Night and has been under Lindsey’s care since he purchased her two years ago.

She’s earned over $40,000 in the interim and will be doing her work for the second straight time in the Open ranks on Friday while racing against a familiar rival in . Silverlode.

“She’s got a big heart,” Lindsey related. “Let’s just say her heart is bigger than her talent at this point. But don’t get me wrong, if she ever learned to trot straight, she’d really be something.”

With James Kennedy at the controls, Kickinitwithkohler recorded back-to-back conditioned scores in February, on both occasions coming from well back to win going away.

She is coming off a pair of thirds at the head of the class versus the aforementioned Silverlode and in between those two miles was the runner-up behind Lodi Dorian Blues in a solid March 3 contest.

“If they go quick early, you know she’s going to be pretty far back,” her mentor noted. “But you also know she’s going to be coming at the end.”

Open Trot brings out streaking Silverlode

Silverlode, who has rattled off four straight wins at the head of the class with the last pair coming from the demanding No. 10 slot, once again has that assigned post as she heads the cast for Friday night’s featured Open Trot.

Watch and Wager LLC will present a 12-race program with a first post of 6:15 p.m. The headliner will go as the third event on the evening. There will also be a California Sire Stakes for 3-year-olds to be decided as a non-betting race prior to the regular card.

Silverlode is an 8-year-old homebred daughter of British Sterling out of the Website mare Charlotte’s Web who is owned by Desomer Stables Inc, trained by Vickie Desomer and will have Luke Plano handling the lines.

Silverlode comes into this assignment with $155,000 in earnings and a 1:55 1/5 mark that was established over this track last season. She is undefeated this year with Plano handling the lines on each of those occasions.

The Desomer colorbearer left into a pocket journey in the January 13 Open and overpowered favored arch-rival Flameon that evening. She has been odds-on in her last three outings without that foe in the line-up and has not disappointed her many backers.

Silverlode looped the field to prevail by four and a half-lengths on February 11, then captured the February 24 Open while doing her work from this assigned No. 10 post position in game fashion. She changed tactics last week and made every pole a winning one, putting her versatility on display from the tough slot.

Completing the cast are Agrestores Comet with Mooney Svendsen; Fort Valley As, David Siegel; Kickinitwithkohler, James Kennedy; and Lodi Dorian Blues, who will have the services of Steve Wiseman.



MOMMY’S ‘DAILY DOUBLE’ RARE INDEED

BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, March 21, 2017—Mothers love all their children (in theory), but Tuesday night’s happiest mom had to be Cheyenne Adrienne.

Suffice to say no other two- or four-legged mommy had their offspring find Yonkers Raceway’s winner’s circle not once, but twice.

Throw in the fun factoid they’re full brothers, and you certainly have some dinner-table conversation.

Boogiewoogiebrian (Jordan Stratton, $10) won a blanket photo, first-up by a head in the $14,500, third-race pace (1:55) for a first win of the season. The 7-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding in owned by Eric Prevost and trained by Rob Harmon.

Not to be outdone, big brother (by one year) Yo Cheyenne Rocky (Stratton, $12) won the $14,500 eight race, also first-up (1:55.4), also by a head. It was also ‘Rocky’s’ first win of the season for the Robbie Siegelman- trained, Barry Rubinstein Farms-owned homebred.

            Cheyenne Adrienne couldn’t quite complete the always-tricky maternal hat trick however, as half-brother (and 4-5 favorite) Cheyenne Jeffrey (Jason Bartlett) faded to third in the $16,500, 11th-race finale. ‘Jeffrey’ is a 9-year-old Bettor’s Delight gelding for Siegelman/Rubenstein.