Thursday, September 30, 2010

Simpson Freshman Stakes at Vernon Downs

The John Simpson Memorial Stakes for two-year-olds are scheduled for next Thursday and Friday at Vernon Downs.

Purses for each sex and gait are estimated at $35,000 divided and the draw schedule is as follows:

2FT to race on Thursday, October 7 with the entry box to close at 9:00AM on Saturday, October 2.

2CT - 2CP - 2FP all to race on Friday, October 8 with the entry box to close at 9:00AM on Tuesday, October 5.

Phone entries call (315) 829-6825.

The condition sheet will be available here soon.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

15th Track Record Falls in Saturday Night Racing

The speedy River Shark chalked up the 15th track record performance of the season at Vernon Downs with a 1:50.3 mile in Saturday night’s (Sept. 25) $8,000 eighth event.

Third at the quarter, timed in :27.1, River Shark ($4.10) was sent to the front by driver Jack Rice and continued on through splits of :55.2 and 1:22.2 to win the week’s Miracle Mile-2 contest by 3-1/2 lengths and establish a fresh Vernon standard for 4-year-old pacing geldings.

Saturday’s sizzler marked the first Vernon victory, the fifth season’s score and the 13th lifetime tally for the bay son of Four Starzzz Shark-Riverview Diamond, who equaled his lifetime speed mark.

Mark Ford trains the career winner of more than $506,000 for the VIP Internet Stable, El Lobo, LLC and Aaron Waxman.

One race later, Winbak Dimensions ($3.70) became a repeat winner in Vernon’s $11,000 MM-1 class, closing from second in the stretch to post a head decision over Mata Harry.

The 1:53 effort marked the fifth season’s score and 31st lifetime tally for the 7-year-old son of Village Jove-Exact Dimensions, who hiked his career bankroll to more than $510,000.

Defending dash champ Jimmy Whittemore did the teaming for trainer Jim Perry and owners William and Jack Heinz.

Whittemore and Ruel “Dude” Goodblood, Jr. each hung up driving doubles during the 10-race card.

Prior to Saturday’s pari-mutuel program, non-betting divisions in Vernon’s second leg of the C. K. G. Billings Series for amateur drivers of trotters were won by Laura Mac Namara (driving Anahar Charlie) in 1:59.1, and Mitchell Walker (Rush N Supreme) in 1:57.1.

Mac Namara is the owner of Anahar Charlie (trained by John Mc Dermott), while Walker is the owner and trainer of Rush N Supreme.

DOWNS DOINGS—On The Way Again (in 2002) and Golden Receiver (2009) had previously shared the Vernon record for 4-year-old altered pacers…Saturday’s new speed standard marks the 15th record that has been re-written or tied during the track’s 57th season…Vernon will offer live racing Thursday-Saturday next week, first post at 6:55 p.m.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Manofmanymissions, Seducedbychocolate Capture Kindergarten Classic Finals in Track Record Times

Seducedbychocolate, Manofmanymissions and Winning Mister all produced track record performances during Friday night’s (Sept. 24) 12-race program at Vernon Downs.

Seducedbychocolate’s 1:56.4 record for 2-year-old filly trotters came in the $134,000 final of the Kindergarten Classic Series, Manofmanymissions rewrote the colt mark for freshman high-steppers with his 1:55.2 triumph in the $162,500 KCS male clash, while Winning Mister authored a 1:54 standard for 4-year-old trotting horses with his win in the week’s Miracle Mile-1 contest.

Seducedbychocolate ($14.40) took charge of the ninth race after the opening quarter and trotted on to a two-length tally over Sacred Saint.

David Miller drove for trainer Jonas Czernyson as the bay daughter of Chocolatier-Seducer Hall turned in a career-best mile, improved her summary line to 3-3-2 after nine trips to the track and her earnings to nearly $100,000 for the Maximum Force, Inc.

It was her second local series score.

Manofmanymissions ($2.70) also lowered his personal speed badge and secured his second series win in Friday’s 10th test.

The bay son of Yankee Glide-Armbro Vanquish trotted on or near the lead throughout, winning by five lengths over Whit.

Andy Miller did the teaming for trainer Erv Miller.

John Carver, M Biasuzzi Stable and Mystical Marker Farms own the winner of $86,750.

Former Downs driving champion Brian Sears did the steering for veteran Vernon trainer Ray Van Dreason as Winning Mister ($4.50) turned a pocket trip into a head victory over Airzoom Lindy in Friday’s top Miracle Mile trotting match-up.

The time trimmed three-fifths of a second off his record and one tick of the timer off the previous mark for his age, sex and gait, set by Airzoom Lindy back on July 23.

Robert J. Key owns the homebred black son of Angus Hall-Winning Missbrenda, who has earned nearly $385,000 during his productive career.

Divisions of Friday’s $53,100 New York-bred late-closer for 3-year-old filly trotters were won by Platinumatic, in 1:55.4 for the Purple Haze Stables; South Jersey Honey, in 1:56 for owner, trainer and driver Steve Reisenweaver; Jetties, in 1:56.1 for owner Roy Dobbins, and L Dee’s Maggie, in 1:56.3 for owners Lawrence Dumain and Carlo Lattinelli.

Celebrity Obsesions 1:57.4 performance in Friday’s $10,000 KCS consolation contest (race eight) for frosh fillies on the diagonal gait was just four-fifth of a second off the then track standard for her class, while Highscore Kemp’s 1:53.4 tally in race 11 (Miracle Mile-2) missed the track mark for 4-year-old trotting mares by just four-fifths of a second.

Tim Tetrick turned in a driving triple for the third time at the meet, while Sears, Howard Okusko, Jr. and trainer Jessica Okusko were each credited with two wins during the track’s 68th program.

DOWNS DOINGS—Vernon’s 1:57 previous 2-year-old filly trotting mark (Some Girls) and its 1:55.3 former colt trotting standard (Dejarmbro) were both established earlier in the meet…Saturday’s 10-race pari-mutuel program, which features the week’s top Miracle Mile pace, begins at 6:55 p.m. Non-betting divisions in the C.K.G. Series for amateur drivers of trotters will be held prior to the program, one at 6:10 p.m. and the other at 6:20 p.m.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Lucky Jim Breaks Track Record in Winning $195,000 Credit Winner

The sensational Lucky Jim produced the fastest trotting mile in the 57-year history of Vernon Downs while winning the 4th-annual Credit Winner Open in 1:52 on Friday night.

Competing against six swift rivals in the $195,000 eighth event, Lucky Jim ($4.90) rallied three wide off the final bend and came a last quarter in :27.4 to earn a one length victory over track record-holder Buck I St Pat (1:54.3 for aged mares).

Hot Shot Blue Chip was another half-length back in third.

Friday’s thrilling effort resulted in the 24th lifetime score for the 6-year-old gelded son of S J’s Photo-Hawaiian Sierra, who improved his season’s slate to 5-4-0 after 11 appearances.

Andy Miller drove the career winner of $1.5 million for trainer Julie Miller and owners David and John Prushnok and William Gregg.

Lucky Jim’s clocking clipped one-fifth of a second off the previous all-time Vernon trotting standard, set by the older gelding Vivid Photo while winning this same event in 2007.

The gifted Frosty Flirt improved her season’s summary line to 10-1-1 after 14 starts with a personal best 1:55.1 triumph in a division of Friday’s $149,416 New York Sires Stakes contest for 3-year-old trotting fillies.

David Miller did the teaming for owner and trainer Tracy Brainard.

Friday’s other NYSS divisional winners were Wolf’s Jann (Tetrick driving for trainer Jeffrey Morris and the Leo Wolf & Son stable) in 1:56.2, Tuesdays With Mom (Claude Huckabone, Jr. steering for owner and trainer Peter Arrigenna) in 1:55.2 and Viva Las Lindy (Tetrick sitting in for trainer Frank Antonacci and the Adam Victor & Son stable) in 1:57.1.

Swan In A Million (Andy Miller handling the lines for trainer Erv Miller and the Diamond Creek Farm, Mary Jane Anderson, Mystical Marker Farm and John Carver ownership contingent) remained unbeaten after three starts with a 1:57.4 tally in a male division of Friday’s $40,000 Kindergarten Classic for 2-year-olds on the diagonal gait.

The other colt/gelding clash was won in 1:58.4 by Evil Urges (trainer Homer Hochstetler driving for Connie Hochstetler and Robert Buddig), who also secured his third season’s score.

The female Kindergarten Classic flights were captured by Taya’s Photo (Andy Miller teaming for trainer Erv Miller, Peggy C. Hood and the Mystical Marker Farm) in 2:00, and Hot Off The Press (part-owner Jacqueline Ingrassia piloting for trainer Frank Ingrassia and her fellow owners Martha Brown and the Arden Homestead Stable) in 1:57.4.

Tetrick, Andy Miller and Brainard each posted three wins during the track’s 65th program.

DOWNS DOINGS—Lucky Jim’s record for aged trotting geldings marks the 11th track standard that has been broken or tied during the 2010 meeting…Saturday’s 12-race all pacing line-up that includes six Miracle Mile clashes, will begin at 6:55 p.m.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Vernon Downs Teams Up with Facebook for Exclusive Hotel Offer

The Hotel at Vernon Downs Casino is offering its Facebook fans an exclusive hotel offer.

Fans can print off a coupon available exclusively on Facebook good for a $49 room rate from Sunday through Thursday nights.

Visit to become a fan today.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Conway Hall Trot and Top 5 Races of the Year Highlights Season Finale of "Inside Harness Racing"

Yursa Hanover’s upset of champion Buck I St Pat in the Conway Hall Trot plus closing night festivities and the Top 5 Races of the Year highlight the season finale of the “Inside Harness Racing” television show. The 30-minute episode debuts on Time Warner Cable Sports throughout New York tonight at 6:00 PM and is also available online at the Tioga Downs YouTube site (

This week’s episode also includes an all-access look inside the starting gate and a feature on a Tioga Downs farrier. Plus, leading driver Jim Marohn, Junior flips the script and interviews Jason Settlemoir about his career in track management. Also, see as some of Upstate New York’s biggest stars are inducted into the Upstate New York Harness Racing Hall of fame as the inaugural class.

“Inside Harness Racing” debuted on June 23rd and aired each Wednesday at 6:00 PM throughout the live racing season. Every episode is archived on YouTube. “Inside Harness Racing” is hosted and produced by Justin Horowitz and features Jason Settlemoir and Wendy Ross as field reporters while Jim Rotundo handles videography and production.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Track Record Falls During Sire Stakes at Vernon Downs

The exceptional youngster Fashion Delight turned in the fastest divisional clocking, but Townslight Hanover established a track record during Saturday night’s $135,200 New York Sires Stakes feature for 2-year-old male pacers at Vernon Downs.

Fashion Delight delivered his fourth straight score with a 1:51.4 performance in Saturday’s first race, before Townslight Hanover hustled to a 1:53.1 victory in the third race that chopped a full second off the previous track record for freshman geldings on the lateral gait.

Sir Ziggy’s Z Tam won Saturday’s final NYSS flight after a career-fastest 1:52.1 mile in the fifth event.

Fresh off first-place finishes in the prestigious Niatross and Woodrow Wilson events, respectively, at The Meadowlands, Fashion Delight flashed to the front after the opening quarter and never looked back en route to a half-length triumph, his fourth in six starts.

The bay son of Bettor’s Delight-B J’s Sunshine missed the track’s colt mark by 4/5ths of a second, while hiking his purse winnings to more than $298,000.

David Miller did the catch driving for trainer Jim Miller and the Fashion Farms.

Townslight Hanover, a bay son of Bettor’s Delight-Towner’s Image, took command after the half and then raced on to a nose victory that earned him a fresh speed standard and his second score in seven starts for owner Kenneth Tucci.

Jim Morrill, Jr. drove the winner of $73,552 for trainer Aaron Lambert.

Trainer and part-owner Pat Lachance guided Sir Ziggy’s Z Tam to bold-going 2-1/4-length score that earned the bay son of Art Major-So Far Away four first-place finishes (all in NYSS action) in seven appearances.

He’s now a winner of nearly $94,000 for Lachance and his partners, the Z Tam Stables and Ira Rosenblum.

Elliot Misshula’s Mata Harry became a two-time winner at the meet after a 1:52.1 tally in the $9,000 ninth race, the weekend’s top Miracle Mile pacing event.

Jimmy Whittemore did the steering for trainer Kevin Gould.

Leading driver Josh Marks earned his 11th triple of Vernon’s 63-card campaign during Saturday’s 12-race card, while Whittemore and Jim Morrill, Jr. each posted a pair of first-place finishes.

DOWNS DOINGS—Three Card Monte (1998) and Four Starz Louie (2007) had previously shared the track’s 1:54.1 standard for 2-year-old pacing geldings…Vernon will present live programs at 6:55 Thursday-Saturday nights next weekend…The track’s $200,000 (est.) Credit Winner open trot is slated for next Friday evening (Sept. 17).

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Yursa Hanover Leads All the Way to Win $150,000 Conway Hall Trot

Yursa Hanover blew away six standout rivals while breezing to a 1:54.2 triumph in Friday night’s $150,000 Conway Hall open mare trotting contest at Vernon Downs.

Second choice to Windsong Soprano in the sixth race wagering, Yursa Hanover ($6.90) went right to the lead from post four and led through splits of :27.3, :57-flat and 1:26 en route to a 1-1/2 length verdict over the crown-wagering choice.

Autumn Escapade finished another half-length back in third, while Buck I St. Pat, racing for purse money only due to a scratch of stable mate Southwind Wasabi, finished fourth.

Daniel Dube did the driving for trainer Benoit Baillargeon as the 4-year-old daughter of Windsong’s Legacy-Yankee Topaz earned her third season’s score and 12th lifetime tally.

Richard Berthiaume owns the career-winner of $820,835, who posted her 1:52.3 record earlier in the campaign.

Tracy Brainard’s Scorpion Moon secured her third straight score with a 1:55.1 victory in Friday’s $15,000 Miracle Mile-1 trot, while the Brainard-trained newcomer Slimsplace, owned by Jeffrey Gillis and Ellen Ott, turned in a 1:52.1 career-best mile while winning the week’s top Miracle Mile class for female pacers.

Tim Tetrick, who chalked up five victories during Friday’s 13-race program, drove both of those first-place finishers.

Divisions of Friday’s $30,000 Kindergarten Classic clashes for 2-year-old male trotters went to Swan In A Million (1:57), Manofmanymissions (1:56.3) and High Pan Tolerance (1:58), while the filly flights were won by Centrifical Force (1:59.1), Seducedbychocolate (1:57.4) and Beatgoeson Hanover (1:57.4).

In addition to Tetrick’s fine performance, and Brainard’s three conditioning credits, drivers Andy Miller, David Miller and Daniel Harvey, as well as trainers Erv Miller and Maurice Bazinet were each two-time winners during the track’s 62nd program.

After Friday’s eighth event, Vernon’s all-time driving champion Jack Bailey (16 titles), along with driver Brian Sears, owner Ken Jacobs and announcer Jim Moran were recognized as Vernon’s representatives into the Upstate New York Chapter of the U. S. Harness Writers Association initial Hall-of-Fame class, that also includes Clint Galbraith, Buddy Gilmour, Jeff Gregory, Jeff Gural, Guy Howard, Gerry Sarama, Ray Schnittker, John Schroeder and Dave Vance.

DOWNS DOINGS—The times turned in by Seducedbychocolate and Beatgoeson Hanover were just 4/5ths-of-a-second off the track’s record for frosh female high-steppers…Saturday’s 12-race program, that includes several Miracle Mile pacing divisions and three flights of a New York Sires Stake for 2-year-old male side-wheelers, will begin at 6:55 p.m.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Buck I St Pat leads eight in $150,000 Conway Hall at Vernon Downs

World Champion Buck I St Pat will lead eight rivals into battle on Friday night at Vernon Downs in the $150,000 Conway Hall.

The 7-year old trotting sensation will look to repeat in the Conway Hall as she captured the 2009 edition in track record time for aged trotting mares in 1:54.3.

Campaigned from the mighty Burke Stable, Buck I St Pat will be part of an entry that shares the betting with Southwind Wasabi who captured the third leg of the Miss Versatility Trotting Series at Vernon on September 2nd in track record time for 4-year old trotting mares in 1:53.

Trainer Ron Burke has listed usual pilot Tim Tetrick on Buck I St Pat, and will turn back over the lines to Josh Marks who steered Southwind Wasabi to her last win at Vernon Downs.

The duo has been listed as the 7-5 morning line choice, but also drew the seven and eight hole in a field of eight.

The $150,000 Conway Hall has been slated for race number six on Friday night’s card that kicks off at 6:55 pm.

The field is listed below:

Conway Hall Trot: Open Mares Friday, September 8th
Race 6: Purse: $150,000
# PP Horse Driver Trainer
1 7 Southwind Wasabi Josh Marks Ron Burke
1A 8 Buck I St Pat Tim Tetrick Ron Burke
2 1 Broadway Paige Jimmy Whittemore Angus McDonald
3 2 Windsong Soprano Andy Miller Robert Mcintosh
4 3 Elusive Desire Trond Smedshammer Michael Keeling
5 4 Yursa Hanover Daniel Dube Benoit Baillargeon
6 5 Autumn Escapade David Miller Jonas Czernyson
7 6 Highscore Kemp Frank Antonacci Frank Antonacci

Also featured on Friday night’s undercard will be six divisions of the Kindergarten Classic Trot, three for colts and geldings, and three for fillies.

Leading the way in the colt division is Swan In A Million from super producer broodmare Swan Lake for trainer Erv Miller.

In the Miracle Mile 1 top trotting test, World Champion Enough Talk will make his return to the racetrack for trainer-driver Peter Kleinhans coming off of a break in the Ricci Memorial on August 14th.

Don’t miss out on some of the weekends best racing action with world class trotters on Friday night at Vernon Downs, post time 6:55 pm.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Anndrovette Leads Sire Stakes Action on Labor Day

The nifty filly Anndrovette continued her winning ways with a career-best 1:52.1 performance in the opening division of Labor Day’s $146,073 New York Sires Stakes headliner for 3-year-old pacing distaffers at Vernon Downs.

Taking on five formidable rivals in Monday afternoon’s third event, Anndrovette called all the shots en route to a five-length tally over Crown Lady. She paid $2.20 for finishing first.

The route-going effort marked the third NYSS score in succession for the bay daughter of Riverboat King-Easy Miss, who is owned by trainer Mark Kesmodel, along with Joseph Devino and Jeffrey Bamond.

Jason Bartlett drove the career winner of more than $181,000 to her sixth lifetime triumph.

Bartlett also guided Enduring Delight ($3.60) to a 1:53.1 decision over Love And Honor in Monday’s second NYSS flight; race six on the 12-event program.

It was the fourth career win (all this season) for the bay daughter of Bettor’s Delight-Enduring Dream, who equaled her lifetime speed mark.

She has returned more than $133,900 in 17 starts to owner-trainer Ron Coyne, Jr. and the Two Ninjas Stable.

In Monday’s final NYSS flight, race nine, the sensational Hula’s Z Tam ($2.10) improved her overall record to 12 victories in 16 lifetime starts with a 1:52.4 verdict over Buy Art.

With trainer Pat Lachance at the controls, the productive bay daughter of Bettor’s Delight-Tsunami Hanover earned her second straight NYSS win, improved her season’s summary line to 6-2-1 after nine outings and increased her all-time bankroll to $559,100 for Lachance and partners Margaret Dey and the Z Tam Stables, LLC.

The veteran speedster You Bet Your Glass ($11.40) responded eagerly to the commands of catch-driver Claude Huckabone, Jr. while posting a 1:51.4 victory in Monday’s $10,000 10th event, the week’s top Miracle Mile pacing contest.

It was the fifth win at the meet for the gritty gelding, who is registered to trainer Arnie Marks and William Williams, Jr.

In addition to Bartlett’s double, drivers Rick Plano, Josh Marks, as well as trainers Marks and Howard Okusko, Jr., each secured a pair of wins during the track’s 61st program.

DOWNS DOINGS—Provisional pilot Truman Gale authored his fourth victory at the meet following a 1:55.3 outing behind the pacer Printing A Place in the day’s last race…Due to the Labor Day matinee, there will be no live racing here this Thursday (Sept. 9). Live competition will resume on Friday (Sept. 10) with the $200,000 (est.) Conway Hall Open mare trot, and a leg of the Kindergarten Series for freshman trotters.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Pair of Track Records Fall on Thursday Night Card

Southwind Wasabi and Dejarmbro each crafted track record performances during Thursday night’s 10-race program at Vernon Downs.

While turning in the second fastest trotting mile in the track’s 57-year history, Southwind Wasabi produced a 1:53 Downs standard for 4-year-old mares on the diagonal gait with her solid two-length score in Vernon’s $25,000 leg of the Miss Versatility Series for older mare trotters.

The favorite Dejarmbro delivered a personal-best 1:55.3 victory in the opening division of Thursday’s $133,708 New York Sires Stake for 2-year-old male trotters that chopped 4/5ths-of-a-second off the previous mark for freshman colt high-steppers, set by Blacktuxwhitesocks last season.

As the crowd’s fourth wagering choice, Southwind Wasabee paid $25.20 after collecting her third season’s score for the Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Howard Taylor and James Koran ownership contingent.

Vernon’s leading driver Josh Marks did the teaming for trainer Ron Burke.

With Jeff Gregory steering for trainer Jessica Okusko and Wanda Polisseni’s Purple Haze Stables, Dejarmbro converted a pocket trip into his third straight score and fourth tally in six lifetime starts. He paid $3.40.

Thursday’s other NYSS colt/gelding divisional winners were I’m The Answer (Gregory driving for trainer Okusko and the Purple Haze Stables) in 1:56.4, Tiger’s Too Good (Wally Hennessey steering for trainer Joe Holloway, a part owner along with Hugh Grant, Jr., L & L Devisser LLC, and the Val D’Or Farms) in 1:57.2, and the dead-heat first place finishers Keenan (Jim Morrill, Jr. piloting for trainer Larry Remmen and owners John Lichtenberger and Ray Remmen) and Neal (David Miller sitting in for trainer Jim Campbell and the Fashion Farms) in 1:57.3.

Off The Grid (Morrill, Jr. teaming for owner-trainer Jody Weidman) earned a 1:57.4 speed mark and his fourth season’s score while posting the fastest divisional triumph in Thursday’s $39,500 NYSS late-closing contest for 3-year-old male trotters.

The evening’s other late-closing flights went to Black Licorice (Brian Mattison handling the lines for trainer Paul Kelley and the East Pond Stable) in 1:58.1, and Signal Hill Ginger (Gregory getting the call from trainer Tim Lanpher and owner Wesley Chandler) in 2:00.

Gregory chalked up four wins during the track’s 58th program, while Okusko, the track’s defending conditioning champ, was credited with three tallies.

DOWNS DOINGS—Vivid Photo is still the track’s fastest trotter of all time on the basis of a 1:52.1 mile in 2007…Morrill, Jr. visited Vernon’s winner’s circle twice during Thursday’s program…The Keenan-Neal tie marked the first dead-heat for win at the meet…Friday night’s 10-race card will begin at 6:55 p.m.