Friday, October 28, 2011
RD Blues took advantage of the pylon path to post a 1:58.1 victory in Thursday night's $4,300 feature for female pacers at Vernon Downs.
With Jack Rice doing the teaming, RD Blues ($6.10) drafted along in the pocket behind the pace-setting Won Night Stand until the stretch drive, then slipped through along the inside and eked out a neck tally on a "sloppy" track.
Thursday's tally was the first locally, the fourth this season and 12th all-time for the 5-year-old daughter of Park Place-Rainy Day Blues.
Maria Rice (Jack's wife) conditions the career winner of more than $110,000 for the Rice Racing Stable and the Brothers IV Stable.
Rick Plano delivered three winners during Thursday's nine-race card, earning his eighth Vernon hat-trick this year and increasing his win total to 78 and taking over second-place in the track's driver standing from Frank Milby, who has 76.
Jimmy Whittemore is the current leader with 98.
DOWNS DOINGS - Provisional driver Mickey Holiday earned his first local victory behind Ashley Holiday's pacer Lyonsmontanajune, trained by Sherri Holiday, in Thursday's second race. It was his third career victory... Malevich Hanover and Enlightened each recorded their fifth Vernon victories on Thursday, one behind the current trotting win-leaders Canouan and DL Cruiser... The pacers Hay Goodlooking and Rosa Villa are the co-winningest equines at the 82-program meeting with seven scores apiece... Friday night's 10-race card will include the $200,500 Kindergarten Classic final for 2-year-old male trotters in race five, the $182,500 KC championship contest for filly trotters in race seven and a $10,000 Open trot in race eight... Only eight more live programs remain in the track's 58th season... The Downs will now switch to a Friday-Saturday schedule only, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Nine freshman trotting colts and nine freshman trotting fillies will look to add a serious chunk of change to their 2011 bankrolls on Friday night at Vernon Downs in the Kindergarten Classic Finals.
Andy and Julie Miller will send out a pair of trotting colts in the $200,500 Kindergarten Classic Final for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters with Southwind Austin and Vic Smith.
Both freshman trotters have already banked over $100,000 each and have combined for 10 victories on the year.
Andy will drive Vic Smith, who has been no worse than third in eight seasonal starts this year for the Andy Miller Stable and Baron Racing, while Steve Smith will drive the other Julie Miller entry, Southwind Austin, whose worst finish in 10 starts has also been a third.
The entry has been listed as the 9-5 morning line favorite for race number five and will go head-to-head with Frank Antonacci and Noel Daley's three-horse entry.
In the $182,500 final for 2-year-old trotting fillies, Maven, has been installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite drawing post position number nine.
Jonas Czernyson trains the daughter of Glidemaster–M Stewart for W J Donovan, who has piled up seven wins in 10 seasonal outings, good for more than $140,000 in seasonal earnings.
Her main pilot this season has been Yannick Gingras, who will make the trip to Vernon, New York to guide the filly in race number seven.
The fields are below for the Kindergarten Classic Finals:
$200,500 Kindergarten Classic Final
2-year-old colt and gelding trotters
# PP HORSE DRIVER TRAINER
1 1 Gym Tan Laundry Brian Sears Noel Daley
1A 7 World Cup Frank Antonacci Frank Antonacci
1B 8 Blazed Tim Tetrick Frank Antonacci
2 3 Southwind Austin Steve Smith Julie Miller
2A 6 Vic Smith Andy Miller Julie Miller
3 2 Catman Dude Chris Lems Larry Rathbone
4 4 Kingapore Ray Schnittker Ray Schnittker
5 5 A Penny Earned Jim Morrill Jr. George Ducharme
6 9 Highland Yankee Frank Milby Bruce Saunders
$182,500 Kindergarten Classic Final
2-year-old filly trotters
# PP HORSE DRIVER TRAINER
1 1 All In The Muscles Andy Miller Julie Miller
2 2 Pretend To Be Nice Jack Rice Kimberlie Miller
3 3 American Saint Rick Plano Charlie Norris
4 4 Can't Have My Moni Tim Tetrick Frank Antonacci
5 5 Lady Andi Brian Sears Larry Rathbone
6 6 Aldebaran Malibu Frank Milby Jonas Czernyson
7 7 Sterling Volo Jan Johnson Jan Johnson
8 8 Bridge The Way Wim Paal Henrik Lundell
9 9 Maven Yannick Gingras Jonas Czernyson
Vernon Downs kicks off its three-day race weekend on Thursday night, followed by live racing on Friday and Saturday, all with a post time of 6:55 pm.
For more information on Vernon Downs please visit us online at www.vernondowns.com.
Monday, October 24, 2011
Maryann Plano's veteran pacer Hay Goodlooking used a bold backstretch speed-brush to become a contender, and then continued on to secure a 1:53 victory in Saturday night's $10,000 featured ninth race at Vernon Downs.
With husband Rick at the controls, Hay Goodlooking ($13.40) got away last in the six horse Open field, before accelerating from fourth to second around the final turn.
After a brief battle with the pace-setting favorite, Diamond Stick Pin, entering the homestretch, the gritty gelding drew off to a half-length triumph over the on-coming Thanks For Stoppin.
The second wagering choice, Samandar, finished third.
The energetic effort by Hay Goodlooking gives him seven scores at the 81-program meeting, tying him with fellow pacer Rosa Villa for most equine tallies at the Downs thus far in 2011.
It was the eighth season's score and 24th lifetime win for the bay son of Art Major-Monique's Legacy, who raised his career earnings to more than $400,000.
Hay Goodlooking's first-place finish gave Rick Plano his seventh three-win outing at the meet.
He also won with Maryann's trotter Damian Carlos N (1:57.2), and Real Sparks (1:54.1), a pacer he conditions for Dan and Jacalyn Boddie.
In a non-betting division of the C.K.G. Billings contest for amateur drivers of trotters prior to Vernon's 12-race pari-mutuel program, Anthony Verruso closed from fourth in the final quarter behind Sam's Honeybee to post a 1:59.2 triumph over the nearest of their nine rivals.
Carl Gillespie conditions the 5-year-old mare for owner Verruso.
Leading driver Jimmy Whittemore and driver/trainer Roman Lopez each chalked up twin tallies during the wagering program.
DOWNS DOINGS - Provisional driver Josh Kinney earned his sixth win at the meet after a 1:55.4 effort by the pacer Joey P in Saturday's second race... With Frank Milby doing the steering, the pacer Excellence In Arts collected his third victory in a row for owner/trainer Ron Miller and his partner, Leo Lashomb, with a career-best 1:55.4 showing in the evening's last race... The Downs will present Thursday-Saturday night racing for the final time in 2011 next week, before switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Here's a look at the updated Driver/Trainer Standings:
Jimmy Whittemore 98
Frank Milby 76
Rick Plano 75
Chris Lems 62
Claude Huckabone, III 37
Howard Okusko, Jr. 35
Frank Davis 32
Roman Lopez 30
Jack Rice 28
Brian Connor 27
Leon Bailey 26
Tracy Brainard 51
Rick Plano 47
Dave Dewhurst 29
Jessica Okusko 29
Dennis Whittemore 27
Roman Lopez 23
Dan Daley 21
Gym Tan Laundry turned in a track record performance, while Vic Smith, Maven, American Saint and Bridge The Way continued to pay dividends to their owners during Friday night's $50,000 leg of the Kindergarten Classic (KC) Series for 2-year-old trotters at Vernon Downs.
Gym Tan Laundry lopped one-fifth-of-a-second off the previous track standard for freshman trotting geldings with his 1:57.1 score in Friday's second male division, while the colt Vic Smith continued his consistent ways with a 1:56.2 tally in the first male KC clash.
Maven produced the fastest filly score of the KC's fourth leg, a 157.4 triumph in the middle distaff division, while American Saint earned a 1:58.2 win record in the sixth race, and Bridge The Way lowered her speed standard to 1:58.4 in Friday's first flight.
Gym Tan Laundry turned a two-hole trip into a career-best score, while improving his overall record to 3-2-1 after six starts in Friday's fifth event.
James Rattray did the steering for trainer Noel Daley and the Adam Victor and Son Stable as the bay son of Yankee Glide-Fresh Face improved on the Vernon mark for his age, sex and gait that had been established by Classic Conway on Sept. 24 of this year.
Vic Smith closed from third in the stretch to earn his sixth score in eight official appearances in Friday's second race.
Andy Miller drove the bay son of Yankee Glide-PJ Naomi for trainer Julie Miller and the Andy Miller Stable/Baron Racing Stable partnership.
The capable colt also sports a second-place finish and a third this season.
Maven's come-from-behind triumph in race three improved her summary line to 7-1-1 following 10 trips to the track.
Frank Milby did the teaming for trainer Jonas Czernyson as the bay daughter of Glidemaster-M Stewart hiked her winnings to more than $140,900 for owner W. J. Donovan.
Milby earned a double during the evening after piloting American Saint to her initial pari-mutual win.
The bay daughter of Like A Prayer-Baby American has also produced three seconds and two thirds in nine outings for trainer Charlie Norris and owner Robert J. Key.
With Wim Paal sulky-sitting for trainer Henrik Lundell, Bridge The Way raced like she was the best, and proved it with a front-striding, maiden-breaking tally.
The bay daughter of Conway Hall-Bridget Blue Chip-Credit Winner has also chalked up a second-place finish and a pair of thirds after six showings.
Red Light became a two-time winner at the 80-program meeting following a 1:55.3 victory in Friday's $10,000 ninth event, the week's Open trotting contest.
Claude Huckabone, III did the chauffeuring for top trainer Tracy Brainard and her partner, Andrew Herzog.
It marked the fourth current tally and 11th lifetime win for the 4-year-old son of S J's Photo-Miss Lovely, who increased his career bankroll to $170,141.
DOWNS DOINGS - Driver Leon Bailey won with the Dan Daley-trained trotters Hallin' Cash and Tap Tap Dance during Friday's 11-race card... Saturday's 12-race pari-mutual program will be preceded by a non-betting leg of the C.K.G. Billings Series for amateur drivers of trotters at 6:30 p.m... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Harlem Rockturne regained her title as Queen of the Pacing Hill at Vernon Downs following a 1:54.1 victory in Thursday night's $10,000 featured 10th event.
Leading dash-winner Jimmy Whittemore did the teaming for his father, trainer/owner Dennis Whittemore, as Harlem Rockturne ($4.60) raced aggressively throughout the mile contest, closing from second in the stretch to defeat the favorite, All About Kisses, by nearly two lengths.
Thursday's tally was the sixth in the last eight outings for Harlem Rockturne and her fourth in the track's female Open pace.
The 4-year-old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover-Capericorn has collected five of her nine season's scores over Vernon's 7/8ths-mile oval, raising her career total to 10.
She's now a lifetime winner of more than $82,000.
Canouan's 1:58 triumph in Thursday's $5,500 first race was his sixth of the season locally; tying him with DL Cruiser for most trotting tallies after 79 of this year's scheduled 90 programs.
Frank Milby drove for owner/trainer Laurie Stark and her partner, Thomas Eichas.
The pacer Rosa Villa currently leads in equine wins at the meet with seven.
Rick Plano picked up four driving victories on Thursday, raising his win total for the meet to 71, two shy of Milby's second-place total.
Chris Lems logged three driving and two training wins during Thursday's 12-race card.
DOWNS DOINGS - Two-time defending champ Whittemore leads in driving victories with 96... Gus and Alan Johnston's freshman pacing colt Moonlight Ranson earned his first trip to the winner's circle after a 1:57.2 mile with Plano piloting for trainer Ray Van Dreason in Thursday's third event... Friday's 11-race card includes five divisions (three for fillies) in the $50,000 fourth preliminary round of the Kindergarten Classic Series for 2-year-old trotters, plus the week's $10,000 Open contest for square-gaiters. First post will be at 6:55 p.m... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Vernon Downs horseman Dan Daley knows all about success at the Breeders Crown. He captured the 2-year-old colt trot with champion Master Lavec in 1999 and finished second a year later with CJ's Secret.
Daley held another strong hand five years later with the super fast RC Royalty, but blames himself for the colt's fifth place finish at the Meadowlands.
"I choked him way down and let a horse go that I shouldn't have," said Daley. "But that's the way it goes sometime."
Daley will seek redemption at Woodbine Racetrack with the best colt in RC Royalty's 17-foal first crop, Royal Shyster.
The New York Sire Stakes champion has nine wins and three seconds from 12 freshman starts with earnings of more than $225,000, not bad for a colt Daley plucked out of the 2010 Morrisville College Yearling Sale for a mere $14,000.
"His dad was a really good horse, but he's actually more manageable and he's going to go on and be a top, top horse," said Daley. "There aren't too many two-year olds that can just trot a quarter in 27 seconds at the drop of a hat. He's a good horse and wants to be a great horse."
Royal Shyster scored the easiest of wins in the $175,000 New York Sire Stakes Final at Saratoga on October 1, stretching his winning streak to seven.
The streak came to a surprising halt last Friday with a runner-up finish in a division of the Simpson Stakes at Vernon Downs. Daley said the colt emerged from the race a little sick, but will be ready for the Breeders Crown.
"I don't usually go to the Breeders Crown unless I've got a legitimate shot and I think he does so we're going to race him."
** A video replay of Royal Shyster's win in the New York Sire Stakes is available by clicking the following link: NYSS Final
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Heston Blue Chip, Forever Just, Blackjack Princess and Up Front Sharon were each divisional winners in Saturday's $62,534 John Simpson, Sr. Memorial Stake for 2-year-old pacers, while Tim Tetrick teamed five first-place finishers during a raw and rainy fall evening at Vernon Downs.
The Linda Toscano trainees Heston Blue Chip (1:54.4) and Forever Just (1:55) won segments of the $31,924 Simpson contest for male members of the lateral gait, while the Mark Ford conditioned youngsters Blackjack Princess (1:55.4) and Up Front Sharon (1:55.4) posted their victories in the event's $30,610 filly flights.
Heston Blue Chip (American Ideal-Shot Togo Bluechip), the track's season's speed leader for freshman colt side-wheelers on the basis of his 1:52.4 New York Sires Stakes score here on Sept. 24, extended his winning streak to six with a bold-going effort over a "sloppy" track in the 10th of 12 pari-mutual races.
The solid score, which provided Tetrick with his fifth win, improved the gifted colt's summery line to 10 wins and a second-place finish in 11 starts for local owner Ken Jacobs.
The career-winner of more than $273,900 is the 2011 NYSS champion for his class as the result of a 1:53.3 victory in his previous start at Saratoga on Oct. 1.
Forever Just (Bettor's Delight-Forever Cam) improved his summary line to 7-4-1 following 12 official trips to the track after Tetrick steered him to a fast-closing 1:55 triumph in Saturday's fifth event.
Fred Wallace and the Stake Your Claim Stable hold the registration papers on the capable colt, who now sports a $188,689 bankroll.
Tetrick was also at the controls behind Blackjack Princess (Cam's Card Shark-Happy Doris) in the sixth event as the frisky filly converted a draft-along trip into a tight tally over Arodasi.
It marked her fourth official win in succession and gave the bay side-wheeler a 5-4-2 performance line after 12 appearances.
Robert O. Di Nozzi owns the career winner of $102,750.
Up Front Sharon (American Ideal-Jeff Diamond) earned her front-ending, 4-3/4 length tally in a non-betting contest between the second and third pari-mutuel races.
Jim Morrill, Jr. did the sulky-sitting for owner-trainer Ford and his partner, C. Ed Mulinax, as the steady-going filly advanced her record to 3-3-1 and winnings to more than $78,000 after eight starts.
Tetrick also finished first with the pacer Dot's Bigboy (1:56.3) and Open pace winner Diamond Stick pin (1:54) to tie Frank Milby, Chris Lems and Rick Plano for most Vernon victories on a single season's program after 78 racing cards.
Ford ended the evening with three training tallies, while Toscano, drivers Morrill, Jr., Milby and Brian Sears were each two-time Saturday winners.
DOWNS DOINGS - There are now just 12 programs remaining during Vernon's 58th season... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Classic Conway, Quit Smoking Now, Cowgirl Hall, Exercise To Go and Autumn Escapade all performed with distinction during a rainy, blustery Friday evening at Vernon Downs.
Classic Conway and Quit Smoking Now were each divisional winners in Friday's $63,734 John Simpson, Sr. Memorial Stake (JSSMS) for 2-year-old colt & gelding trotters, while Cowgirl Hall and Exercise To Go each captured filly trotting flights.
Autumn Escapade, one of the sport's top older mare trotters, earned her second local score with a 1:55.2 effort in Friday's $10,000 Open trot.
The brilliant 6-year-old daughter of Victory Sam-Winning Colors K followed up a 1:53.2 victory in Vernon's $25,000 leg of the Miss Versatility series on Sept. 9 with a 1:54.4 score in the barn-storming event's $90,000 championship clash at Delaware, OH on Sept. 22.
David Miller did the teaming for trainer Jonas Czernyson as the current career winner of $778,652 secured her 26th all-time tally for David and Misty Miller with a front-striding, 1:55.2 outing over a "sloppy" track in Friday's 10th event.
Classic Conway (Conway Hall-Classic Yankee), Vernon's season's speed leader for 2-year-old trotting geldings on the basis of a 1:57.2 track record triumph back on Sept. 24, became a two-time winner at the meeting with a fast-closing 1:58.4 mile in the first (Super Bowl) segment of the $31,024 JSSMS for male proponents of the diagonal gait.
Stephane Bouchard did the steering for trainer Janice Connor and area owners Albert C. and Michelle C. Crawford.
Quit Smoking Now (Donato Hanover-Smokeslikeachimney) nailed down his third current victory (first locally) and snapped New York Sires Stakes champion Royal Shyster's seven-straight winning streak with a determined 1:57.1 achievement in the second colt/gelding clash.
David Miller drove for noted trainer Cassie Coleman and the Norman Smiley, Gerald Smiley, Theresa Gentry Silver and TLP Stable ownership contingent.
Competing for purse money only (due to a scratch of entry-mate Silica), Cowgirl Hall (Cash Hall-Centerfold Hall) closed from fifth in a :28-second final quarter to defeat the favorite, Maven, in the second session of the $32,710 JSSMS for female high-steppers.
Former three-time Downs driving kingpin Brian Sears did the sulky-sitting for trainer Gates Brunet and the Deborah Brunet (Gate’s wife), Theodore Gewertz, Michael Rosenthal and Jean Brunet ownership group.
It was the second local tally and fourth season's score for the present winner of more than $52,800.
Exercise To Go (Muscles Yankee-Lhasa Lhasa Lhasa) came from off the pace and earned her first career victory with a 2:01.2 outing in the other Davidia Hanover division, with Miller sitting in for trainer Czernyson and owner Thomas Dillon.
Miller collected three driving victories during Friday's 12-race card, while Sears, driver Jim Morrill, Jr. Czernyson and trainer Brunet each posted a pair of first-place finishes during the track's 77th program.
DOWNS DOINGS - Leading Vernon driver Jimmy Whittemore celebrated his 29th birthday with a 1:59.1 triumph behind his dad's (trainer Dennis Whittemore) trotter Saver in Friday's 11th event... Saturday's 13-race slate includes four divisions of a $62,534 JSSMS for 2-year-old pacers, plus the week's $10,000 Open test for local proponents of the lateral gait. First post will be at 6:55 p.m... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Friday, October 14, 2011
Ocean's Motion went from last to first before recording a 1:51.3 victory in Thursday night's $10,000 featured first race at Vernon Downs.
Competing against five quick-footed foes in the week's Open contest for female pacers, Ocean's Motion ($4.10) was last at the quarter, fifth at the half and fourth entering the final two furlongs.
The 4-year-old daughter of Camotion-CR Charisma powered up in the stretch and drew off to win by more than six lengths.
Veteran teamster Chuck Connor, Sr. did the steering for his wife, trainer Janice Connor, and owner Robert J. Lovett as the career-winner of more than $126,000 secured her second local score, sixth season's tally and 13th lifetime victory.
Ocean's Motion's time bettered her previous win-mark by 2/5ths-of-a-second and was just one-and-2/5ths seconds off the track record for her age, sex and gait, set by Armbro Dancer in 2007.
Greig Watson's Play Right and Canouan, shared in ownership by Thomas Eichas and trainer Laurie Stark, each recorded their fifth current Vernon victories during Thursday's 11-race program, and are now just one tally shy of the meet's trotting leader, DL Cruiser, with 14 programs remaining in the track's 90-card campaign.
Leading driver Jimmy Whittemore and, runner-up Frank Milby, each recorded a pair of first-place finishes during Thursday's card; while top provisional driver Truman Gale chalked up his 18th win at the meet.
DOWNS DOINGS - Play Right and the pacer Southwind Trini, owned by Maryann Plano and Paul Bulinski, each extended their current winning streaks to three during Thursday's card... Southwind Trini also became a five-time winner at the meet... Becoming two-time winners at the Downs this season were the pacers Ocean's Motion, Lover's Delight, Emma's Lily, Works For Me, Mc Tbone Ida and the trotter Pa John... Friday's 12-race card, which begins at 6:55 p.m., will feature four divisions of a $63,734 John Simpson, Sr. Memorial Stake for freshman trotters (two for each sex), plus the week's $10,000 Open trot... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending its 58th campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Thursday, October 13, 2011
Vernon Downs kicks off its three-day race weekend tonight (Thursday, October 13) at 6:55 pm leading into its stakes filled weekend featuring the 2-year olds in the John Simpson Stakes on Friday and Saturday night.
Friday night plays host to the freshman trotters led by NYSS champion Royal Shyster for the colts.
Dan Daley brings Royal Shyster into Friday night looking to work on his seven-race win streak that he has compiled since the beginning of August.
In their last out, the 2-year-old son of RC Royalty–Spin The Planet left aggressively in the $175,000 New York Sire Stakes Final and never relinquished the lead winning by more than two lengths.
Royal Shyster sports a record of nine wins and two seconds in 11 seasonal outings for more than $224,000 in earnings.
In the filly division, Maven headlines the second division for driver David Miller and trainer Jonas Czernyson.
The 2-year-old daughter of Glidemaster–M Stewart is coming off back-to-back wins at Lexington, including her last out in a $109,100 division of the Bluegrass Stakes in 1:56.3.
Maven has found the winner's circle on six of eight occasions in 2011 good for earnings of more than $131,000.
Saturday switches gaits and welcomes the freshman pacers looking for late season glory in the Simpson Stakes.
New York sensation and 2011 Sire Stakes champion, Heston Blue Chip, headlines for the colts coming off of an impressive first over romp in the Sire Stakes Final two weeks ago.
Linda Toscano trains the 2-year-old son of American Ideal–Shot Togo Bluechip for owner Ken Jacobs, and regular driver Tim Tetrick will be in town to do the driving.
Two divisions for 2-year-old pacing fillies will be contested Saturday night, one slated for race six, while the other will be raced as a non-wagering event after race number two.
Post time for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday is 6:55 pm.
For more information on Vernon Downs please visit us online at www.vernondowns.com.
Monday, October 10, 2011
With 75 of 90 racing days completed, defending driving champion Jimmy Whittemore looks well on his way to repeating. Meanwhile, defending training champion Tracy Brainard continues to top the standings, but Rick Plano is making a furious bid to take over the top spot. Plano arrived at Vernon Downs well after the start of the season following the end of the season at Cal Expo. Here are the driver and trainer standings through the end of racing on October 8th.
1. Jimmy Whittemore 92 wins
2. Frank Milby 68 wins
3. Rick Plano 66 wins
4. Chris Lems 58 wins
5. Claude Huckabone, III 35 wins
6. Howard Okusko, Jr 33 wins
7. Frank Davis 32 wins
8. Jack Rice 27 wins
8. Roman Lopez 27 wins
10. Brian Connor 25 wins
1. Tracy Brainard 49 wins
2. Rick Plano 42 wins
3. Dave Dewhurst 27 wins
4. Jessica Okusko 26 wins
5. Dennis Whittemore 25 wins
6. Roman Lopez 20 wins
7. Howard Okusko, Sr. 19 wins
8. Chris Lems 17 wins
8. Dan Daley 17 wins
The favorite Mata Harry rewarded his backers with a 1:54 victory in Saturday night's $10,000 Open-1 pacing feature at Vernon Downs.
With leading driver Jimmy Whittemore doing the urging in the evening's ninth event, Mata Harry ($3.90) raced on the lead through splits of :26, :55.4 and 1:25.1 en route to a neck decision over the fast-closing Mackenzie's Bliss.
Saturday's score was the sixth at the 75-program meeting for the bay son of Armbro Operative-Down East Lady, one less that the current equine race-winning pacesetter Rosa Villa.
It was the 37th lifetime triumph for the career-winner of $439,220, who is trained by Dennis Whittemore (Jimmy's father) and owned by Elliot Misshula.
Driver Rick Plano continued his hot hand, piloting four first-place finishers during Saturday's 10-race card and raised his win total for the weekend to 10.
The talented 59-year-old horseman won with the pacers Dot's Big Boy (1:53.4), Lucky Land (1:52.1), Bigtown Hero (1:51.1) and Most Happy Lavros (1:53.1) to obtain his second four-win outing of the meet and raising his current driving victory total here to 66, third to Whittemore's pace-setting total of 92, and two behind Frank Milby's second-place total of 68.
He also advanced his training total to 42, seven behind the current conditioning leader Tracy Brainard with 15 programs remaining in the track's 58th season.
DOWNS DOINGS - Bigtown Hero's career-fastest win was his third in succession and the fastest mile of the evening. His time was just 4/5ths-of-a-second off the track record for 3-year-old gelding pacers, set earlier this season by Fantaddy. The promising bay son of American Ideal has now recorded five wins in 10 career starts... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending this year's 90-card campaign on Nov. 19. First post each night will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Saturday, October 8, 2011
The trotter Yankee Manny continued to display winning form in a 1:55.1 performance during Friday night's $10,000 featured seventh race at Vernon Downs.
Trainer Frank Davis was at the controls as the favorite Yankee Manny ($3.20) flashed to the front early in the week's Open-1 contest for square-gaiters and maintained his advantage to the finish, holding off the surging Mr. Avalanche by one-half of a length.
Friday's first-place finish was the third in a row for the 5-year-old son of Yankee Glide-Yankee Minuet, who now sports seven current victories and 18 lifetime tallies.
The career winner of $93,302 is owned by Brian Green.
The final time was 1/5th-of-a-second off the record mile that the bay gelding produced here last Friday.
Salome Marvel converted a pocket-sitting trip into a 1:56.2 triumph in Friday's $6,500 secondary feature, race nine, with Frank Milby doing the teaming for trainer John McNeil, III and owner Ben McNeil.
Rick Plano continued his hot hand, winning with the trotters L’Argent Hall (1:58.4) and Enlightened (1:58.3) to notch his 11th driving double of the meet, his sixth victory of the weekend and his 62nd after 74 current Vernon programs.
Driver Claude Huckabone, III and leading trainer Tracy Brainard also combined for a pair of first-place finishes during Friday's 10-race card.
DOWNS DOINGS - Conrad Zurich's promising sophomore trotter Petraeus earned his initial pari-mutuel victory with Howard Okusko, Jr., sitting in for his wife, trainer Jessica Okusko, guiding the son of Credit Winner-Lorrain Blue Chip to a 2:01.1 tally in Friday's sixth session... Saturday night's 10-race card, which includes the week's $10,000 Open-1 pace in race nine, will begin at 6:55 p.m... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending this year's 90-card campaign on Nov. 19... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Friday, October 7, 2011
Rick Plano began his trek towards a four-win evening with a 1:54.2 effort behind the pacer Southwind Trini in Thursday night's $6,500 featured first race at Vernon Downs.
Competing in the week's top test for female side-wheelers, Southwind Trini ($6.10) challenged for the lead off the starting gate, took command with a two-wide move entering the backstretch, and then continued on to a half-length decision over the pocket-sitting RD Blues.
Thursday's tally was the second in a row and fourth this season for the fleet-footed 3-year-old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover-Tattoo Hanover, who is shared in ownership by Rick's wife, Maryann, and Paul Bulinski.
Plano, currently third in races won at the 73-program meeting and second in training tallies, went on to finish first with Real Sparks (1:53.3) in the second race, New York Scooter (1:56) in the fourth event, and Patty's Courage (1:56) in the final contest to record his initial four-win outing of the current campaign.
He had a five-win night here last Saturday (Oct. 1).
Chris Lems, currently fourth in driving victories here this season, and Joe Nassimos, each posted twin tallies during Thursday's 10-race card.
DOWNS DOINGS - Plano, who didn't arrive from California until after Vernon's 58th season was well underway, currently sports 60 driving wins and 38 training tallies... Friday's 10-race program, which includes the week's $10,000 Open-1 trot in event seven, will begin at 6:55 p.m... The Downs will continue with a Thursday-Saturday night schedule for the remainder of this month, before to switching to a Friday-Saturday slate during the first three weekends in November, ending this year's 90-card campaign on Nov. 19... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Monday, October 3, 2011
Rick Plano put on a driving clinic at Vernon Downs on Saturday, winning five of the evening's 12 races, including the fastest mile during the card with his wife's pacer, Bigtown Hero.
After scoring with Devil's Bargain, CJ's On Target, Hay Goodlooking, and Brilliant Thunder, Plano piloted Bigtown Hero to a convincing 1:53.2 triumph over a rain-soaked, "good" track in Saturday's 10th event.
The 59-year-old horseman urged Maryann Plano's 3-year-old gelding into the lead after the opening quarter and the bay son of American Ideal-Art Account kept charging until he had racked up a solid 15-length victory.
As the favorite, he paid $3.30 for the win, his second at the meet and fourth in nine career outings.
Plano's five wins tied him with Frank Milby and Chris Lems as the only reinsmen to have reached that plateau after 72 current programs.
The win also enabled him to tie Lems at 56 victories for third place on the meet's dash-winning chart.
Lems logged a pair of first-place finishes (with the pacers he trains and drives, Gentlemen Heir and Mackenzie's Bliss) during Saturday's program to keep pace with the surging Plano, who recorded eight victories during the three-night weekend.
DOWNS DOINGS - Plano is currently second in training tallies at the meet with 35, 12 off the pace being set by defending conditioning champ Tracy Brainard... Plano, an area native, didn't arrive from his former home base in California until well after Vernon's 58th campaign was underway... Provisional driver Josh Kinney earned his fifth win at the meet behind the pacer Hobby Art Benka in Saturday's 11th event... The Downs will offer live racing at 6:55 p.m. Thursday-Saturday next week... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Despite a step up in class, Yankee Manny managed to obtain his second straight score in Friday night's $10,000 featured first race at Vernon Downs.
Making just his second local appearance, Yankee Manny ($24.20) followed up a 1:56.3 victory against lesser company here last Friday with a career-fastest 1:55 triumph in this week's Open-1 trotting contest.
Trainer Frank Davis did the driving as Yankee Manny rallied from sixth in the early going, overcame a parked-out journey around the final bend, and then zipped home from third in the final furlong (last quarter in :27.4) to finish first by more than two lengths.
It was the sixth season's score and 17th lifetime victory for the 5-year-old son of Yankee Glide-Yankee Minuet, who is owned by Brian Green.
The Pocono Downs ship-in has earned $9,200 in his two Vernon outings, raising his career winnings to more than $88,300.
Driver Frank Milby collected three wins during Friday's 12-race program, including a 1:55.4 triumph behind Dilly Dally Delia in race six, the week's $8,000 Open-2 trotting test.
John Wilkerson conditions the six-time current winner for owner Benjamin Brooks.
DL Cruiser became the winningest trotter at the 71-program meeting following a lifetime-best 1:57 score in Friday's $6,500 seventh session with trainer Joe Nassimos steering for owners Nicholas Angarano and Shawn Ross.
It was the 6-year-old gelding's second win in succession and sixth at the Downs thus far in 2011.
Driver Roman Lopez also logged a pair of first-place finishes during Friday's card.
DOWNS DOINGS - The pacer Rosa Villa is the winningest equine at the meet with seven scores... Kyler's Valentine, a 2-year-old filly pacer shared in ownership by trainer Dave Dewhurst, Anthony R. Farina and Bernard Colonna, earned her initial career victory with Chris Lems guiding her through an impressive 1:56 performance in Friday's 10th event... Saturday's 12-race line-up, which features some of the week's top pacing attractions, will begin at 6:55 p.m... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.
Brookroad Knight returned to his winning ways after posting the fastest clocking in the final division of Thursday night's $37,200 New York Sire Stakes-sponsored late-closing contest for 2-year-old male trotters at Vernon Downs.
Competing over a "sloppy" track in the third and final flight of Thursday's test for freshman representatives of the diagonal gait, Brookroad Knight idled in fourth as Leo Vincent cut a three-quarter-mile split in 1:29.2.
With Dan Cappello, Jr. sitting in for trainer Bruce Borden, the bay son of CR Excalibur-Questionable closed from second at the top of the stretch (final quarter in :29 seconds), and out-hoofed the pocket-sitting Toga Town to the finish by one length.
The fast-closing, lifetime-best 1:58.4 effort resulted in the fourth win in the past five starts for the career-winner of $21,737, who is still owned by breeder John W. O'Connor.
Thursday's other late-closing divisional victors were Hurrikane Brockton (Conway Hall-Global Possession), in 2:00.4 for driver Stephane Bouchard, trainer John Mc Dermott, and the Jeffrey Kuhen, Hurrikane Racing and Jonathan Klee ownership contingent; and New York Attitude (Cash Hall-Four Starz Nanny), in 2:01.3 with Chuck Connor, Jr. teaming for trainer John Hallett, and co-owners Michelle Hallett and L. Michelle Oglesby.
Thursday's career-fastest tally was the third in succession for Hurrikane Brockton, while New York Attitude's maiden-breaking performance improved his summary line to 1-1-3 after six starts.
Connor, Jr. recorded a double during the 12-race program after teaming Ocean's Motion to a career-quickest 1:52 tally in Thursday's $10,000 Open event for female pacers.
It was the first win in two local tries, fifth current victory and 12th all-time score for the 4-year-old daughter of Camotion-CR Charisma, who is trained by Janice Connor (Chuck's wife) and owned by Robert Lovett.
Rick Plano posted two sulky-sitting and training tallies during the track's 70th program, while drivers Jimmy Whittemore and Frank Davis each recorded a pair of first-place finishes.
DOWNS DOINGS - With trainer John Stark, Jr. driving, the promising 2-year-old trotting filly The Sorceress earned her second straight score and a 2:00 win-record in Thursday's $3,000 third race for Stark and his Syracuse-area partners E. Carlyle Smith, David Smith and Jim Giannuzzi... Plano is currently second in training tallies at the meet with 33, 14 behind the leader Tracy Brainard with 20 planned programs remaining during the track's 58th season... Friday's 12-race card, which includes the week's Open-1 and Open-2 trotting tests, will begin at 6:55 p.m... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com, and on Facebook.