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Buffalo hosts NYSS

June 07, 2007

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The New York Sire Stakes will make its first stop at Buffalo Raceway this Friday and Saturday evenings and feature $260,025 in total purses for the 3-year-old pacing colts and fillies. On Saturday night patrons who attend the racing will also receive a free New York Sire Stakes T-shirt while supplies last.


The Saturday program is highlighted by five divisions of the sophomore pacing colts, each carrying a $25,845 purse.


Among the starters is Western New York-based Ben Bono. This Pro Bono Best gelding is owned by trainer Judy Blaun and John Sixt. He competed well on the New York Sire Stakes circuit last year to score $63,807 in purses.


This year Ben Bono qualified at Buffalo Raceway and then headed East to compete in overnight events at Vernon Downs in preparation for the $133,000 Empire Breeders Classic at that track. The gelding earned his way into the final, but after a first-over trip finished out of the money and is looking for a better result this weekend.


Locally-owned and trained stablemates Hollywood King and Forte Blue Chip will start in the fourth and tenth races, respectively. KMS Stables of Eden, N.Y., owns the pair trained by Buffalo Raceway-based Megan Wilson. Hollywood King, who was unraced as a 2 year old, has already turned in two victories at Buffalo this year and Forte Blue Chip won his last time out in a career mark 2:00.


Also competing are early-season money earners The Best and Joey Rico, who drew into the same eighth race division. The Best has already earned $30,750 this year for owner Rocco Manzi, largely in stakes action at Tioga Downs in Nichols, N.Y. The Pro Bono Best colt has the post position advantage over his foe and will be starting behind the three while Joey Rico starts from the outside post seven.


Joey Rico was a game second in the Empire Breeders Classic final at Tioga, where The Best finished fourth. A son of Bettor’s Delight, Joey Rico is owned by Arabest Racing Stables out of Syracuse, N.Y., and has now accumulated $48,406 just this year.


Missing in this division is defending New York Sire Stakes champion Kenneth J, who will be competing in an elimination for the North America Cup at Mohawk Racetrack on the same night. He is expected to return to New York for the next Sire Stakes leg on June 23 at Vernon Downs. Kenneth J’s owner Ken Jacobs, however, will be watching via simulcast to catch his Pro Bono Best colt Kollateral Damage, who is starting in the second race at Buffalo.


The female set will descend on Hamburg’s half-mile oval on Friday night with four divisions of the fillies, each worth $32,700.


Among the competitors is La Diavla, a winner of more than $100,000 last year. For her efforts on the track, the John Navelli-owned filly, earned the award of 2-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year from U.S. Trotting Association District 8.


The Riverboat King filly starts from post three in the second race and is looking for her first win of the year with trainer-driver John Stark Jr.


Patrons who attend live racing on Saturday night will receive a special edition New York Sire Stakes T-shirt complimentary of Buffalo Raceway, the Western New York Harness Horsemen’s Association and the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund, which sponsors the New York Sire Stakes program.


Fans who return to Buffalo Raceway on Saturday, June 16, wearing their T-shirt may enter a drawing for a betting voucher worth $25 or $50 to wager on the next live race at Buffalo Raceway. The racing program that night will feature New York Sire Stakes divisions for 3-year-old trotting colts.


Post time each night is 6:30 p.m. (HHBNY)

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