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Pennsylvania's Walter Christman dies

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Walter L. Christman, 74, of Washington, Pa., died Tuesday (Jan. 3) from complications of diabetes. Mr. Christman owned Standardbreds that raced at The Meadows for many years, and his son, Mark, trains and owns horses that race at the track.   Born in Washington, Pa., where he was raised by his grandparents, Mr. Christman was a 1955 graduate of Washington High School...
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Gural named Horseperson of the Year

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Voting for the Railbird Recognition Awards ended on New Year’s Eve and the voice of the fans of harness racing have been heard. After nearly 8,000 votes were cast, Jeff Gural was named the 2011 Horseperson of the Year and Big Bad John’s Little Brown Jug win was tabbed as the most memorable Racing Moment of 2011.   Gural, who owns and operates Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs in New York St...
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Yonkers returning to one-mile racing

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
When Yonkers Raceway returns for 2012, flat-mile racing does, too. The Raceway has announced that all races--overnights, series and stakes--shall be contested at the traditional one-mile distance. Yonkers had offered mile and one-sixteenth overnight events exclusively since last February.   Any distance exceptions would be indicated on the weekly condition sheet.   Speaking of said s...
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NY Gov makes gaming part of plans for 2012

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has made building the largest convention center in the nation at Aqueduct Racetrack one of his major economic initiatives. In his 2012 State of the State speech on Wednesday, Cuomo noted that the Jacob Javits Convention Center on Manhattan’s West Side is only 12th in the nation in size, and thus not competitive.   Cuomo said the state is pursuing a joint venture...
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Woodbine, Mohawk live handle up 14% in 2012

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) announced its 2011 live Standardbred racing season, conducted at Woodbine and Mohawk, saw a sharp increase in handle over the previous year.   The 223-date campaign, which concluded Dec. 31, produced an "all-sources" total of $298,979,830 wagered, a 4.57 per cent overall increase from the $285,904,240 mark recorded from 243 dates offered last year. ...
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Maxwell hopes to look smart in Willowdale Series

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Twenty-six-year-old Ryan Maxwell will be busy Saturday night at Woodbine as he sends out a pair of entries in the first leg of the Willowdale Pacing Series. Maxwell, who currently trains 21 horses at Mohawk, will send Hare Craft and Reckless Ric postward in their respective $30,000 divisions.   Hare Craft, the top Ohio Sire Stakes 3-year-old pacing colt in 2011, has banked $213,642 in his...
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Northern Kid to stand at Walnut Hall Stock Farm

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Northern Kid 2, 1:58.3; 3, 1:57.1, whose first crop includes the 2011 Illinois stakes-winning filly Maevey Gravy 2, 1:58.2, will be standing at stud at Walnut Hall Stock Farm in Lexington, Ky., for the 2012 breeding season. Northern Kid has only one small crop of racing age and already has three sub-2:00 performers. The Northern Kid Partners group, which includes Walnut Hall Stock Farm’s Dr. Ja...
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Dan Patch award puts Sommer on "cloud nine"

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Action-Broadway, who was named the Dan Patch Award winner as best trotting mare by the U.S. Harness Writers Association, brought breeder/owner Ken Sommer to new heights. “I’m going to be 90 in May and that (Dan Patch news) sure as heck put me up on cloud nine,” said Sommer, who lives in Sheffield, Ohio. “I take my hat off to the writers, the number that voted for her. I felt her perfo...
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Valentowner uses late brush to nail Preferred

on 01/04/2012 12:00 AM
Valentowner made a triumphant return to The Meadows’ pacing elite Wednesday when he brushed wide and late to capture the $22,500 Preferred Pace. Greg Grismore drove Valentowner for trainer Norm Parker and owner/breeder Bob Key. Valentowner now boasts career earnings of $472,279.   A fixture in the track’s top pace for years, Valentowner had retreated in recent months to conditioned...
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Snowshoe Series gets underway at Woodbine

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Thirty-three pacing colts and geldings lined up behind the starting gate Monday evening to contest four $20,000 Snowshoe Pacing Series divisions. Wizard Of Art, Cobalt Man, Big League and X found the winner’s circle for their connections. The series is for colts and geldings who are 3 and 4 year olds in 2012 and are non-winners of two races or $20,000 lifetime as of midnight, Oct. 31, 2011. &...
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Case will face extra scrutiny to receive license

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Questions about the possible licensing of Walter Case Jr. so he can resume driving horses have recently surfaced, but racing commission staff in at least a couple of states said Case will have to do more than simply file an application for a license. The U.S. Trotting Association has received his application for membership, but he must be licensed by individual states in order to drive. &nbs...
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Florida stakes schedule for 2012 announced

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
The  Florida Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association (FSBOA) has announced its 2012 stakes schedule for 2 and 3-year-olds.   The schedule, which begins in June, includes additional racing opportunities for 3-year-olds compared to prior years including the previously announced FSBOA Stake #1 (early closer with nominations due February 15, 2012). Each of the FL-sired stakes hav...
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Hagmann has two contenders in Lifetime Dream

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
As Woodbine’s winter stakes events get under way, trainers are hoping to start the 2012 racing season off on the right hoof. And with a pair of newly minted 4-year-old mares, Torgeir Hagmann will look to capture two of three divisions of the first leg of the Lifetime Dream Trotting Series on Thursday at the Toronto oval.   Nordic De Vie and Marys Out Cruisin will make their first starts...
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Yonkers condition sheet, series forms online

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Yonkers Raceway has put out its condition sheet for the first two days of the 2012 racing season. The sheet for Friday-Saturday, Jan. 13-14, is now available on-line (www.yonkersraceway.com, then go to "racing "icon), with the sheet for the first full week of racing (beginning Monday, Jan. 16) available shortly.   Nomination blanks for Yonkers' early 2012 series, the Petticoat and Saga...
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Washington set to seek fourth King Pace title

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
When Monticello Raceway presents its 12th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Pace, a race which will feature the talents of African-American drivers on Tuesday afternoon, Jan. 17, last year’s champ, Cedric Washington, will be back to defend his title.   On Jan. 7, 2011 the Mighty M reinsman scored his third victory in the Dr. King Pace when he reined Blissfull Doll to a 2:02...
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KY offering free surgeries for gelding horses

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
For the benefit of Kentucky's horses, free gelding surgeries will be offered at the Kentucky Horse Park on Saturday, March 10, 2012. This free clinic is being provided by the Kentucky Horse Park in partnership with the Kentucky Horse Council's Save Our Horses fund and the American Horse Council's Unwanted Horse Coalition.   The free gelding surgeries are open to any equine owner w...
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12-race card, new food & beverage vendor at Big M

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Nearly 200 horses flooded the entry box for opening night of the 2012 Meadowlands harness meet. The season will kick off Friday, Jan. 6, with a 12-race card that features the third annual We're Not So Young Anymore for pacers 10 years old and up.   The We're Not So Young Anymore field includes Meadowlands open regular Silent Swing, gritty veteran Image Of Dawn, who won the inaugural ed...
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Big Bad John to race at Pompano Saturday

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
The 2011 Little Brown Jug winner, Big Bad John, could be facing the starting gate for the final time in his career if he comes up a winner again at Pompano Park on the Saturday (Jan. 7) program. He'll again start outside in a field of seven horses in the $12,000 Open Handicap Pace.   A win this time out will push his earnings past $1 million lifetime as he now stands at $994,559. Last ...
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Anastasia Whinnie upsets at 30-1 at Meadows

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Anastasia Whinnie followed live cover down the backside, then knifed through an icy wind in the stretch to pull off a 30-1 shocker in Tuesday’s $22,500 Filly and Mare Preferred Handicap Trot at The Meadows.   Opening day for the 2012 season at The Meadows brought snow squalls, single-digit wind chills, and a cold shoulder from bettors for Anastasia Whinnie, who was making a double-cl...
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Omen Hanover wires mare field at Dover

on 01/03/2012 12:00 AM
Omen Hanover continued her recent winning ways by scoring a 1:53.1 wire-to-wire victory in the $23,000 Open Handicap Pace for mares on Tuesday (Jan. 3) at Dover Downs.   Driver Andy Miller and Omen Hanover teamed for the third time in the mare's last three starts to cap off a New Year’s opening race. For the Western Hanover-Ooh’s ‘n Aah’s 8-year-old, it was her f...
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