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Saturday, November 30, 2013

CalX1 - Half-brothers dead-heat at Cal Expo

      By Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness

A racing oddity occurred in Friday night’s co-featured Invitational Trot at Cal Expo Friday night, as half-brothers Franks Best and Inside Broadway dead-heated for the victory. Both are owned and trained by Bob Johnson.

Franks Best is a 6-year-old son of Armbro Scribe out of the American Winner mare Inside Edition, while Inside Broadway is a 4-year-old by Broadway Hall out of that fine mare. Mooney Svendsen handled Franks Best while James Kennedy was in the sulky behind Inside Broadway..

Franks Best has a slew of Sire Stakes trophies on his mantle with $181,000 in the bank and a 1:56 2/5 lifetime standard that was established last season at Running Aces. He sports three victories from six appearances at this session. Inside Broadway has posed for pictures following three of his last four trips to the post at the current stand and the Johnson performer was a 1:55 3/5 victor at Harrah’s Philadelphia last season.

M1 - Campbell Runs The Show at The Big M

Friday night at Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment revived memories of years past with multiple lead changes,  horses rallying from well back to win and Mr. Meadowlands stealing the spotlight.
All time Meadowlands leading driver John Campbell used the live flow to collect four winners on the night, employing the patented Campbell cover trip style on most.  In fact, none of his four wins came with a horse that was on the lead turning for home.

Campbell steered Solid Queen to a grinding first over 1:53.4 score in an 8-1 upset for trainer Mike Russo and owner Scott Irwin in the fifth race. He tripped out the very next race with M&M Harness Racing’s new purchase Sweet Justice in a career best 1:54- for trainer Bruce Saunders at 2 ½ - 1. 
Campbell’s mount in the eighth was the favored Best Boss, a catch drive for her regular pilot and trainer Pat Lachance. Kept well off the pace, she swept by the field with authority to win in 1:52-. Lachance shares ownership with long time patrons M&M Harness Racing and Ira Rosenblum.
The Triple Lindy rallied from well back to take race nine in a personal best equaling 1:54.1 under a Campbell steer. The talented five-year-old was winning for the ninth time this season for trainer Paul Kelley, who shares ownership with all of his friends; Stephen Michaels, Jim Winske, and Bill Weaver. 

In addition, Corey Callahan, who had his coming out party this year at The Meadowlands this year won three races himself.

Friday’s card was the first Friday night of racing in the month of November conducted at The Meadowlands since November of 2010.  But the results showed more promise for the new facility.  Most significantly, the live handle showed an increase of 50-percent from the comparable November night in 2010.  In addition, the total handle yielded a 56-percent increase over that same evening.

Tonight’s card is one for the ages, with eight stakes on the program worth over $3.4 million. It is the first time The Meadowlands has hosted the “Fall Final Four” since the early winter of 2010.  Featured will be the marquee match-up in the $512,000 TVG FFA Pace with sophomore Captaintreacherous facing the finest older pacers on the continent including the sport’s richest, the $5.7 million winner Foiled Again. Combined earnings for that race’s ten contestants are just shy of the $20 million mark.  Hambletonian winner Market Share headlines the $500,000 TVG FFA Trot, while Bee A Magician looks to wrap up an undefeated season in the $253,000 Moni Maker.  Get all the info at The Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment website.


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

               YONKERS, NY, Friday, November 29, 2013--Yonkers Raceway's Black Friday night $37,000 co-featured Open Handicaps--Pace for the ladies and Trot for anyone duly deputized--were won by a perfectly-pocketed Handsoffmycookie (Dan Dube, $6.70) and a second-up Super Manning (Matt Kakaley, $4.40).

            Leaving  from post position No. 4, "Cookie" was in play early, making the first lead. She then gave it up to 8-5 choice Feeling You (Jason Bartlett), who worked her way from an eight-hole impost right at the :26.4 opening quarter-mile.

Moving toward the :56.3 intermission, some unwanted company arrived in the form of Hot List (George Brennan). That one had body--but not bike--in front as Feeling You maintained her slim lead through a cut-throat 1:25.1 three-quarters. It was Marty Party (Eric Carlson) second-over, while "Cookie" was all dressed up and waiting for someplace to go.

            She found that place in the presence of the passing lane, edging clear by a length-and-a-half in 1:54.3. Second went to Marty Party, with Hot List, Royal Cee Cee N (Brian Sears) and Feeling You rounding out the payees.

            For second choice Handsoffmycookie, a 4-year-old millionairess daughter of Art Major owned by JFE
Enterprises and trained by Scott DiDomenico, it was her eighth win in 30 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $76, with the triple returning $362.50.

            The week's marquee trot saw 6-5 favorite Super Manning--like "Cookie" a four-hole beginner--patiently waiting his turn.

            Brando's Muscle Man (Eric Goodell) and Lorenzo Dream (Brent Holland) were the early newsmakers
through intervals of :28.1 and 59 seconds flat. Melady's Monet (Dube) then started the train, with Super Manning
towed in behind. The night was just about over for "Brando" before a 1:27.1 three-quarters, with "Melady" opening a couple of lengths in and out of the final turn.

            However, Super Manning was about to get the memo. He had the leader in his sights at mid-stretch, drawing away late to win by a length in 1:55.3. A shuffled Lorenzo Dream rallied for third, with Brando's Muscle Man and Calchip's Brute (Bartlett) settling for the remainder.

            For Super Manning, a homebred 5-year-old Diamond Goal gelding owned by Joseph Pennacchio and trained by Kevin Carr, he's now 6-for-27 this season. The exacta paid $53, the triple returned $282.50 and the superfecta paid $783.

            Yonkers welcomed Cat Manzi back in the bike Friday night, as he finished sixth with his lone drive. 

            Friday's Pick 5 wager was not hit, meaning Saturday night's wager--complete with a $2,688.93 carryover—now offers a $10,000 guaranteed pool. The Pick 5 is a 50-cent base wager on races 5 though 9 offered every racing night.

            The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting now available daily.



MANALAPAN, NJ – November 29, 2013 – With his fifth drive of the day, Cat Manzi reached the winner’s circle at Freehold Raceway on Friday, November 29, 2013.

It marked the return of the Hall of Fame driver who was sidelined since September 6 when he suffered multiple pelvic fractures in a racing accident at Freehold.

For Manzi, the victory was 14,790th of his career.  He is third highest all time winningest driver in harness racing history.

The 63-year-old Freehold resident was a three and three-quarter length winner with Scoots West in the tenth race.  He also finished second twice among his seven drives on the program. 

Manzi donated his Friday earnings to benefit another injured driver, Anthony Coletta, who was in a racing accident on November 17, 2013 at Harrah’s Philadelphia.

--Submitted by Carol Hodes for SBOANJ

M1 - Meadowlands Announces Details for “Trotters”

East Rutherford, NJ - There were many aspects of Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment that left those in attendance for the grand opening of the new $88 Million facility in awe.  Perhaps none more so than “Trotters,” a combination of owners boxes with elegant dining in the warm ambiance of the atmosphere of a private club.  Filled with fireplaces, plush seating, wood-finish and decorated with the memories of great stars of the sport, Trotters had those enjoying their evening in one of the jewels of The Meadowlands buzzing.
Trotters will be open during every live racing night as well as Kentucky Derby Day.  Those who own a membership to Trotters will always have first priority for seating.  In the event that space is available, New Jersey licensed owners, trainers and drivers can reserve a spot for any racing night other than the blackout dates listed below:

                Saturday, November 30, 2013 – TVG FFA Championships / Fall Final Four
                Saturday, May 3, 2014 – Kentucky Derby Day
                Saturday, July 12, 2014 – Meadowlands Pace Night
                Saturday, July 26, 2014 – Hambletonian Oaks Elimination Night
                Saturday, August 2, 2014 – Hambletonian Day

These “blackout dates” are members-only and there will be no charge for food for members on these dates.  On all other racing nights, when space is available, a New Jersey licensed owner, trainer or driver can reserve a spot at Trotters, including up to 3 guests.  The price structure per-person for non-members in Trotters is as follows for the buffet.

                Thursday Night - $19.95
                Friday Night - $29.95
                Saturday Night - $39.95
Those that are members of Trotters receive a $5.00 discount on all nights for all in their party, up to 3 guests.
In addition, all Trotters customers will be given a free program upon arrival and owners that are spending their evening in Trotters and have purchased a buffet when their horse wins will be offered a free buffet for two in Trotters for their next visit.
This venue was designed specifically to encourage owners of horses to come to The Meadowlands to watch their horses race.  “I am hopeful that providing our owners with an opportunity to spend their evening in a venue like Trotters will give them an incentive to come and watch their horse race,” said Meadowlands Chairman Jeff Gural.  “Trotters provides the perfect atmosphere for owners to enjoy watching their horse race with family members and friends.”
Non-members are encouraged to see the hostess of Trotters to inquire about availability while members can contact Marianne Rotella at (201) 842-5059 to reserve their priority seating.  Walk-ins are welcome, but reservations are preferred.