Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Cutler Memorial on Roosevelt Legacy Night at The Meadowlands

By Press Release

Richard Gutnick looked at the field for the Arthur J. Cutler Memorial at Meadowlands Racetrack and reached a conclusion that might be bad for an owner, but good for a fan.

Gutnick, fortunately, is both.

“It’s not going to be an easy race, but it’s going to be a good race,” said Gutnick, who co-owns two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Market Share.

“It’s like a who’s who of harness racing. To me, these are the (races) you’re waiting for. Races like this where you’re racing against the best, you can’t take anything for granted.

“I’m excited about the year. There are a lot of tough horses out there, especially when you add in the 4-year-olds that are coming back, and it’s going to be a tough year. But that’s what racing is all about. I like when we go against the best. It’s how you find out how good you are.”

Market Share was among 15 horses entered in the Cutler, so two $40,000 eliminations will be held Saturday night at the Big M. The top five finishers from each division will return for the $180,000 estimated final on May 17.

The first elim in post order is Sebastian K, Sweet Justice, DW’s NY Yank, Intimidate, Archangel, Modern Family, Americash Express, and Upfront Billy. The second elim in post order is Sevruga, Market Share, Daylon Magician, Possessed Fashion, Quick Deal, Undercover Strike, and Arch Madness.

Market Share, a 5-year-old who has won 21 of 39 career races and $3.11 million, is making his 2014 debut. Trained by Linda Toscano and driven by Tim Tetrick, Market Share’s top wins include the 2012 Hambletonian and Canadian Trotting Classic and the 2013 Breeders Crown, Maple Leaf Trot, and TVG Free For All Series Championship.

He received the 2012 Dan Patch Award for best 3-year-old male trotter and the 2013 Dan Patch Award for best older male trotter.

Market Share prepped for the Cutler with two qualifiers at the Meadowlands, winning the second on May 3 in 1:52.4 with a :54.4 final half-mile.

“I was very happy with his qualifiers,” said Gutnick, who owns Market Share with TLP Stable and Bill Augustine. “Last week he did the second half under a hold, at least toward the end he was not being asked (to go). It’s nice when you have a horse that can leave fast and close fast. He can do both.”

Sebastian K, an 8-year-old, will be making his North American debut with trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt. Sebastian K, who was Sweden’s Horse of the Year in 2012, has won 26 of 63 career races and the equivalent of $2.29 million in U.S. dollars. He finished last season by winning the Group 1 Aby Stora Pris for the second consecutive year.

Intimidate won the 2012 Breeders Crown for 3-year-old male trotters and has captured 21 of 30 career starts and $605,293. Archangel was the 2012 Yonkers Trot winner and spent 2013 in the stallion shed. He has won 14 of 32 races and $906,579 lifetime. Modern Family and Sweet Justice are among three trotters sharing this season’s fastest mile to date, 1:51.1.

Sevruga is the defending Cutler champion and has won 28 of 64 races and $913,566 in his career. Arch Madness, who won the Cutler in 2010, has won 34 of 108 starts and $4.14 million lifetime. Other top wins for Arch Madness include the 2007 Breeders Crown for 3-year-old males, the 2008 Maple Leaf Trot, and 2011 Oslo Grand Prix.

* * *

Saturday’s card also features the opening round of the TVG Free For All Series for older male pacers. The field in post order is Modern Legend, Thinking Out Loud, Foiled Again, Word Power, Sweet Lou, Bolt The Duer, Warrawee Needy, Dovuto Hanover, Bettor’s Edge, and Golden Receiver.

Written by John Pricci of Harness Racing Update

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Sunday, May 04, 2014

Milestones Set at The Meaodwlands

By Press Release

With over 12,000 people attending the Kentucky Derby festivities throughout the day, The Meadowlands inherited a huge crowd remaining from the Derby day afternoon's business and they were witness to two milestones on the program.

It's not every day that a world record mile occurs in a C-1 Pace, but that happened tonight at The Meadowlands in the 11th race as Mighty Young Joe lowered his lifetime mark again at age 11, to 1:49.3 for trainer/driver Stacy Chiodo.

That mark is the fastest mile ever for a female driver and the first sub-1:50 mile by a female driver, and Chiodo clearly knew it as she waived her whip in triumph when she crossed the wire and saw the teletimer. For Mighty Young Joe, this marked the 30th victory in his career, with earnings approaching $500,000.

On the heels of that milestone came another, as Dave Miller guided Dull Roar to a 1:50.3 victory in the 12th race C-2 Pace for the 11,000th win of his driving career. Miller will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this summer.

The Saturday night feature saw ten sophomore colt pacers assemble in the $47,253 “Albatross” John Simpson Memorial, a Grand Circuit stake. JK Endofanera made his sophomore debut a winning one via a long uncovered move in 1:49.4 for Yannick Gingras.

Away mid-pack as Allstar Partner rolled off fractions of 26.3, 55-, and 1:23.2 Gingras edged JK Endofanera into a first over position attacking the leader until he succumbed to the winner's unrelenting presence. Jet Airway was a fast closing second and Ideal Cowboy third.

The Art Major colt is trained by Ronnie Burke for the 3 Brothers Stable of New York who are both owner and breeder.

As April turns to May a number of three year olds are starting to show up in preparation for stakes engagements and trainer Tony Alagna sent out a pair of impressive Somebeachsomewhere colts making their 2014 debuts.

Maxi Bon (Knock Three Times) set a hot pace then drew away from a Non Winners of two in 1:49.4 with a 27.4 close. He is owned by Carver Stables, Dave Prushnok, Joe Sbrocco and Eagle Soar Partners.

A few races later in another division of the same class, That’s My Opinion (Boldnbrash Hanover) moved to the lead going to the half through slower splits and broke his maiden in 1:50.3. He is owned by the partnership of Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and Jeff Gural’s Little E LLC. Scott Zeron drove both colts.

Tony also sent out Odds On Equuleus for his four year old debut in a B-2 overnight and the 2013 Meadowlands Pace runner up won his first race since September of 2012 in a career best 1:49.1. He was driven by Tim Tetrick and is owned by Odds On Racing of Ft Lauderdale.

B-1/A-2 pacers raced for $22,500 in race two with Rockin Amadeus winning for the second time in three 2014 starts, this one in a new personal record of 1:49.1. Corey Callahan sent him right to the front and rated even numbers before sprinting home in 26.3 to close the deal. Frankie’s Dragon was a very game first over and went right to the wire with the winner.

Rockin Amadeus is owned by Lothlorien of Ontario, Canada and hails from the Takter barn.

Total handle for The Meadowlands Saturday card was $3,287,734.

Written by John Pricci of Harness Racing Update

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Sunday, April 27, 2014

“Cam” Is Super As Foiled Again Fades to Third in Levy Final

Even the great ones have off nights. Despite getting a perfect trip, Foiled Again came up empty in the stretch last night at Yonkers in the $567,000 Levy final, which set the stage for a mini-upset by the P.J. Fraley-trained P H Supercam.

The former claimer benefitted from a perfect drive by Jason Bartlett, snuck through in the passing lane in the stretch and prevailed by a neck over Apprentice Hanover. Foiled Again led until mid-stretch but faded late to finish third, losing by three-quarters of a length.

P H Supercam is a consistent and game horse but he had already lost twice during the series to Foiled Again. That seemed to make his assignment a tough one last night and it became all that much tougher as Foiled Again and Yannick Gingras were able to get a dream trip.

Long shot Sapphire City left from the one post but Gingras was aggressive and had his 10-year-old superstar on the lead by the time the field rounded the first turn. They got to the first quarter in 27.2 and the half in 56.2, the type of pace that made it look like Foiled Again would be impossible to run down.

Better yet for the Ron Burke-trainee, stablemate Bettor's Edge and driver George Brennan were doing their part to get the sport's richest pacer to the winner's circle.

Brennan pulled with Bettor's Edge and then put on the brakes. Anyone who wanted to go after Foiled Again was going to have to go around his dawdling stablemate.

"I thought it was over at the half, that Foiled Again had it won, with that half in 56.2," Fraley said. "He even walked the third quarter, in 1:24.4, and George was on the outside. I didn’t think we would be able to make up a lot of ground."

Bartlett drove a smart race. Rather than trying to make a wide move, he stayed along the pylons and waited to make one dash down the passing lane. The strategy worked perfectly.

"The half was in 56 and I knew that was kind of soft for Foiled Again. but I knew my horse had not been used yet and I knew that he can sprint with a anybody for an eighth of a mile," Bartlett said. "I thought I just needed some daylight and I could be right there with them."

That P H Supercam won was not a huge surprise. That Foiled Again came up short after such an easy trip was.

"I have no idea what went wrong," Gingras said. "No idea at all. He didn't disappoint me. It's just that something went wrong. It's not like he sulked and decided not to race tonight. He's a horse that shows up every single time. Obviously, they'll figure out tomorrow or Monday what went wrong with him. You can't be disappointed. He tried his best and got beat less than a length for the whole thing."

The Levy final has now tripped up Foiled Again four straight years. He won it in 2009 and 2010 and since has been third, second, second and third.

“It’s a horse race that’s why we came here to race,” Bartlett said. “I guess everybody just thought they were going to give Foiled Again the money but we had to race and he’s an animal. They all get beat at some point.”

Written by Bill Finley of Harness Racing Update

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