May 20, 2013
Lislea Moran And Classical Man Win Northfield Park Features
Lislea Moran was first across the wire in the $6,000 Open Pace in Northfield Park’s opening race on Monday, May 20, 2013. Thomas O’Donnell of Berlin Center, Ohio owns the seven-year-old pacer. Trainer Andy Rickert called upon Northfield Park Wall of Famer, Greg Grismore, to drive the gelding. Lislea Moran (Lislea-L’etoile-Praised Dignity) started from post-one and sat the pocket through fractions of 27.3, 56 and 1:24.1. Grismore pulled into the passing lane in the stretch and bettered his competition by ¾-length, completing the mile in 1:54. Finishing behind Lislea Moran were Traczar, State Of The Union, Beans And Weenies, Lite Me Up and Windy City Ron.
Monday’s triumph increased Lislea Moran’s lifetime wins tally to 25 and his career earnings to $248,467. He was an upset winner and returned $29.20 to win.
Classical Man took the $6,000 Open Trot for owner/trainer William Bercury of Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania in the evening’s eighth race. Classical Man (Malabar Man-Classical Motion-Crowning Point) started from post eight and fired out of the gate to make the early lead and never looked back. Driver Aaron Merriman posted fractions of 27.4, 57, 1:26.3 and 1:57. Several were challenging near the finish but Classical Man’s class showed when he dug in and maintained a ½-length margin of victory. Completing the race were Talladega Hanover, BV’s Sister, Freedom Ridge, South Jersey Honey, Lima Apollo, Lady Rev and Rose Run Jeriah.
Twelve- year-old Classical Man now has 39 career wins and earnings of $587,6356. He paid $7.40 to win.
May 17, 2013
Northfield Park Adds $30,000 Guaranteed Pick-5 Total Pool To Monday’s Card
Northfield Park is announcing the addition of a $30,000 Pick-5 total pool guarantee to Monday’s (May 20) program.
Beginning in Race 3, the $30,000 Pick-5 guaranteed total pool includes a carryover of $5,140.50.
Northfield’s Pick 5, Pick 4 and the Pick 3’s offer a reduced takeout rate of just 14 percent.
Monday’s post time is 6:30 p.m.
May 15, 2013
High Stakes Banker Scores Third Straight Win At Northfield Park
High Stakes Banker trotted home for his third straight win Wednesday (May 15) in Northfield Park’s opening race. The five-year old is owned by Larry Dampier of Akron, Ohio. Trainer John Williams has called upon David Majeski to pilot the gelding for all three of his consecutive trio of victories.
High Stakes Banker started from post-five and sat fourth through an opening fraction of 29.1. Majeski pulled the trotter and he remained first-over through middle fractions of 58.4 and 1:28.3. High Stakes Banker took the lead approaching the wire and stopped the clock in 1:59.4. He finished a neck in front of his closest competitor, Wyatt (Frank Harris).
Wednesday’s triumph increased High Stakes Banker’s (Here Comes Herbie-Banker’s Princess-Malabar Man) lifetime wins tally to nine and his career earnings to $68,868. He returned $7.40 to win.
May 15, 2013
Northfield Park Adds $7,500 Guaranteed Pick-5 Total Pool To Friday’s Card
Northfield Park is announcing the addition of a $7,500 Pick-5 total pool guarantee to Friday’s (May 17) program. Beginning in Race 3, the $7,500 Pick-5 guaranteed total pool includes a carryover of $1,481.19.
Northfield’s Pick 5, Pick 4 and the Pick 3 offers a reduced takeout rate of just 14 percent. Friday’s post time is 6:30 p.m.
May 14, 2013
Will Orb Win The Triple Crown’s Second Jewel?
Watch and Wager at Northfield Park!
This Saturday, May 18, marks the 138th running of the Preakness Stakes live from Pimlico Racecourse. Doors open early at 10 am and first post at Pimlico is set for 10:45 am. Early bird wagering on the Preakness will be available. In addition, 40 other tracks from the U.S., Canada and Australia will beam their signals in for simulcast wagering.
If you arrive early, join us for a special morning snack of two donuts and a coffee. The $1.00 special begins at 10 am and will be served in the Racebook while supplies last. Don’t miss out on reserving a private seating carrel and television for your viewing pleasure. Carrel seats are currently on sale at the grandstand center program stand.
Visit Northeast Ohio Food Trucks outside on the trackside apron to satisfy your hunger. Seti’s Polish Boys, The Nosh Box and So Yummy will be on-site from 12-7 pm cooking delicious gourmet food items while you listen to live music by Unknown Reason. Plus, ESPN Cleveland’s Kenny Roda will be broadcasting live from 2-5 pm. Stop by the ESPN Cleveland/WKNR table and play Preakness Plinko for a chance to win prizes!
Players Club members can enter the $1,200 Pimlico Handicapping Contest beginning with race four. Top prize is $500 cash! If you’re not a Players Club member, simply join that day to play instantly! Northfield Park will also offer prize drawings throughout the day. Just fill out the entry blank that you receive when you enter and deposit it in one of the contest bins located near the two entrances. Names will be drawn randomly throughout the day for Cleveland sporting tickets, gift certificates and the grand prize of $1,000!
Pimlico will also offer Pick 4 and Pick 5 wagers. The Preakness Day early Pick 4, races 5-8, has a guaranteed gross pool of $350,000. The later Pick 4, races 9-12, comes with a guaranteed gross pool of $1,500,000!
The Pick 5 is a jackpot wager that pays the carryover to a single unique winning ticket.
FREE admission and FREE parking on Preakness Day at Northfield Park.
May 13, 2013
Beans And Weenies and Lima Apollo Win Northfield Features
Beans And Weenies took the $6,000 Open Pace in the opening race at Northfield Park on Monday (May 13). Wind River Standardbreds of Radnor, Ohio owns the pacer and Calvin “Buck” Hollar is his conditioner. Beans And Weenies (Full Of Fun-Phyllis’s Candy-Artie’s Dream) started from post four and was fourth through a testy 26.4 opening fraction. He made a sweeping three-wide move at the half and took control of the race in the third quarter. Beans And Weenies maintained a ½-length margin of victory with a winning time of 1:54.3. Dan Noble piloted the eight year-old. Completing the race were Traczar, Northern Art, Grandkids Attack, Windy City Ron and Green Olives.
Beans And Weenies now has five wins in 2013 and 20 career successes. Monday’s victory pushed his career bankroll to $56,277. He returned $8.20 to win.
Lima Apollo took the $6,000 Open Trot in the evening’s fifth race for owner David Addy of Norwich, Ohio and trainer Ryan Angus. Lima Apollo (Jailhouse Jesse-Alota Iliad-Armbro Iliad) started from post one and sat the pocket through fractions of 27.3, 57.3 and 1:26.4. He made his move in the stretch and finished a neck in front of the pace setter, posting a winning time of 1:57.2. Tyler Smith drove the six year-old. Completing the race were Freedom Ridge, Sure Thing, Calling A Victory, Flowing James, Rose Run Jeriah and South Jersey Honey.
Lima Apollo now has 12 career victories and a bankroll of $132,858. He was an upset winner and returned $26.60 to win.
May 10, 2013
Northfield Park Adds $7,500 Guaranteed Pick-3 Total Pool To Monday’s Card
Northfield Park is announcing the addition of a $7,500 Pick-3 total pool guarantee to Monday’s (May 13) program. Beginning in Race 6, the $7,500 Pick-3 guaranteed total pool includes a carryover of $1,768.88.
Northfield’s Pick 5, Pick 4 and the Pick 3’s offer a reduced takeout rate of just 14 percent. Monday’s post time is 6:30 p.m.
May 10, 2013
69-1 Winner Sparks Healthy Payoffs at Northfield Park
Carmelita’s Girl was an upset winner in Northfield Park’s 10th race on Friday (May 10). Frank Harris capably piloted the mare for owner and trainer Kyle Ladd of Grover Hill, Ohio.
Carmelita’s Girl (Blissfull Hall-Anais Hanover-No Nukes) started from post-8 and trailed the field through fractions of 27.4, 57 and 1:27.1 over a sloppy surface. Harris moved her four wide approaching the top of the stretch, circled the field and stopped the clock at 1:58.3. She was ¼-length in front of her closest competitor at the wire. Friday’s triumph increased Carmelita’s Girl’s lifetime wins tally to five and her career earnings to $29,881.
The favorite finished off the board as (8) Carmelita’s Girl (69-1) was followed across the wire by (9) Doowrah Silver (2-1), (1) Cute And Cruising (10-1) and (5) My Sweet Lorelei (11-1).
Carmelita’s Girl returned $140.60 to win; the 8-9 Exacta paid $504.60; the 8-9-1 Trifecta returned $4,251.20 and the 8-9-1-5 $1.00 Superfecta paid $8,209.91.
May 8, 2013
Fox Valley Armor Scores 50th Career Win
Fox Valley Armor paced home for his 50th career victory on Wednesday (May 8) in Northfield Park’s fourth race. The 11-year old has 236 career starts, winning 50 times, and finishing second and third 33 and 29 times respectively. Fox Valley Armor (Sportsmaster-Sew With Silk-Timujin) has career earnings of $548,663 and a lifetime mark of 1:51 taken at The Meadows at age eight. The pacer’s richest win was for a purse of $50,000 in a stakes race at Harrahs Chester in 2007.
Fox Valley Armor left from post-8 and sat the pocket through fractions of 28.3, 59, and 1:28. He tipped out in the lane and stopped the clock in 1:57.4, finishing ¼-length in front of his closest competitor, Pandapocket (Ryan Stahl). He returned $4.00 to win.
Andy Rickert of Fredonia, Pennsylvania owns and trains Fox Valley Armor. Jason Merriman drove him to this milestone triumph.
May 8, 2013
Power Everywhere Does It Again; Six In A Row At Northfield Park
Power Everywhere paced home for her sixth straight win Wednesday (May 8) in Northfield Park’s sixth race. The four-year old was bred and is owned by Edwin Harwood of Monroe, Michigan. Trainer Calvin “Buck” Hollar has called upon Robin Miller to pilot the mare for all six of her consecutive sextuplet of victories.
Power Everywhere started from post-five and led at every call through leisurely fractions of 29, 59, 1:29.1 and 1:57.4. She finished two lengths in front of her closest competitor, Majestic Duke (Ryan Stahl).
Wednesday’s triumph increased Power Everywhere’s (Kilowatt-Imagine Anywhere-Camluck) lifetime wins tally to 10 and her career earnings to $16,048. She was the overwhelming favorite and returned $2.10 to win.
May 7, 2013
Northfield Park Announces Second Purse Increase of 2013
Northfield, OH—For the second time in the 2013 season, Northfield Park will increase overnight purses. Beginning with the condition sheet that spans racing from May 10 through May 15, overall purses will go up around ten percent from the previous week. A similar increase took place on March 1.
Northfield’s purses will experience a much larger boost when the Hard Rock Rocksino at Northfield Park, which is currently under construction, is officially open for business. The Rocksino, which is on schedule for a December opening, is a $265 million gaming and entertainment facility being built adjacent to Northfield Park racetrack.
“Rather than just having one large increase when the Rocksino opens, we have chosen to raise purses gradually as the new facility is built” said Dave Bianconi, Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting. “This will benefit our local horsemen who have supported our racing program for years in the pre-VLT era.”
Northfield races over 200 cards per season, with a current live schedule of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday nights – post time 6:30 PM (Eastern).
April 26, 2013
Charisma Hanover Wins The Courageous Lady
The first Grand Circuit event of the season for three year-old filly pacers was a wire to wire victory for the Burke Racing Stable and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, when their filly, Charisma Hanover, won the $84,000 Courageous Lady at Northfield Park.
Trained by Ron Burke and driven by Dave Palone, Charisma Hanover was 1 1/4-lengths in front at the finish and returned $3.40 to win. Despite being hung for most of the first quarter in 27.1, she cruised through fractions of 56.1, 1:25.1 and 1:53.
“She is quite a nice filly,” said driver Dave Palone, “She is easy to drive and steers with two fingers. I know the Burke’s are very high on her.”
Completing the field were Champagne Tonight, Carols Desire, Miss Madi M, Whetstone Hanover, Cams Macharena and Diligent Prospect.
Charisma Hanover, a daughter of Dragon Again remains undefeated through two races in 2013. Friday’s victory increased her career bankroll to $94,902 and the 1:53 clocking was just one-fifth of a second off of her lifetime mark on 1:52:4.
Dave Palone, harness racing’s winningest driver now has three Courageous Lady victories. He won in 2004 with Pantidepressant and in 2011 with Some Girls Do.
April 23, 2013
FIELD SET FOR FRIDAY’S COURAGEOUS LADY AT NORTHFIELD PARK
The $84,000 Courageous Lady has drawn an impressive field of seven and goes postward this Friday evening, April 26, as Northfield Park’s 11th race with an approximate post time of 10:30 p.m. An open stakes event for North America’s top three-year-old-filly pacers, it is the first national stakes of 2013 and has been added to the roster of Grand Circuit events. The Courageous Lady will be the final leg of the evening’s Pick-4 which carries a guaranteed pool of $10,000 and a reduced take-out rate of just 14 percent.
Trainer Ron Burke, who is no stranger to winning major events at Northfield Park or on the national stage, will start two of his talented fillies in the Courageous Lady. Burke trains the morning line favorite, Charisma Hanover (5-2), and the highly regarded Carols Desire (4-1).
Locally based and Northfield Park Wall Of Fame trainer Clair Umholtz makes his first Courageous Lady attempt. Umholtz will start Champagne Tonight who has the fastest mark and highest earnings of this year’s equine athletes.
Meet The Field:
#1 – Miss Madi M is a five-time winner in 12 career starts. This daughter of Real Artist has a 1:53.1 mark at Pocono Downs and has earned $98,872. She is owned by Jennifer Brown and Cameron McCown and is trained by Brian Brown. In 2013, Miss Madi M has been first and second in two starts. She is a 9-2 morning line shot and scheduled to receive the driving services of Northfield regular Ryan Stahl.
#2 – Diligent Prospect is the only maiden in the field but finished second six times in 12 lifetime starts and has bankrolled $97,601. She has two prep races this year at Pocono Downs, pacing in 1:54.1 in her most recent effort. Diligent Prospect is owned by James McLaughlin, Lynne Foley, Gabe Prewitt and Shane Foley. She is trained by Peter Foley who won the Cleveland Classic in December with Bolt The Duer. Dan Noble’s purple and white colors will be in her sulky and she carries a 10-1 morning line.
#3 – Champagne Tonight has prepared for this race by qualifying three times, the most recent being a 1:55.4 win on April 18 here at Northfield Park. She is a daughter of Western Terror, and was a winner in six of eight starts last year, taking a mark of 1:51.3 at The Meadows and earning $202,316. Champagne Tonight is owned by Umholtz Racing Stable, Ngaire Umholtz and Kennedy Sports Corporation and is trained by Northfield Park Wall of Famer Clair Umholtz. She carries a morning line of 7-2 and is scheduled to have the driving services of Brett Miller.
#4 – Carols Desire is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Randy Ringer and Phillip Collura. She is one of two fillies in the race trained by Ron Burke. She had one win in 2012 and has been successful in both qualifiers and the only race she has competed in this season. She was a 5 1/2-length winner on April, 15 at The Meadows in 1:55.3. This daughter of Real Desire has earnings of $104,519 and a mark of 1:53.3 at Indiana Downs. Ronnie Wrenn Jr. picks up the driving assignment aboard this 4-1 morning line starter.
#5 – Charisma Hanover a daughter of Dragon Again, won three of eight races last year and is the winner of three of her qualifiers and her only race in 2013. She has taken 1:52.4 mark last year at Mohawk and again this year at The Meadows and has bankrolled $52,902. She is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC and is the second filly trained by Ron Burke in this race. Charisma Hanover has been impressive in her preps for this race and was made the 5-2 morning line favorite by Northfield Park Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting, Dave Bianconi. Burke enlists the driving services of Dave Palone.
#6 – Whetstone Hanover has three career victories in 11 starts including a win in 2013. She is trained by Daniel Altmeyer who co-owns with Richard Kelson, Jack Piatt and Jeffery Altmeyer. In addition to her three victories, this Somebeachsomewhere filly has banked $34,215 and has a 1:55.1 mark, paced at The Meadows. Pennsylvania regular Mike Wilder has been named to pilot this filly that carries a morning line of 12-1.
#7 – Cams Macharena is owned by Chris Arnold, Kenneth Kohut and Michael Drury and trained by Tony O’Sullivan. Cams Macharena has earnings of $93,470 and has a mark of 1:54.2, paced last year at Rideau Carleton. This filly has won four of her lifetime starts and has two races under her belt in 2013. In her most recent showing, Cams Macharena finished third while having broken equipment in a $17,820 race at Woodbine Harness. Tyler Smith has been named to drive and she carries a morning line of 8-1.
April 2, 2013
Northfield Park Hosts First and Last Nationally Open Three Year-Old Stakes Races in 2013
April begins a full slate of stakes action at Northfield Park. The $87,000 (est.) Courageous Lady will go to post on Friday, April 26. This race for North America’s top three year-old filly pacers kicks off the 2013 stakes calendar.
Among the 20 fillies nominated to the Courageous Lady are last year’s two year-old standouts Cam’s Macharena (1:54.2 f, $89,194), Carols Desire (1:53.3 m, $99,269), Champagne Tonight (1:51.3 f, $202,316) and Miss Madi M (1:53.1 f, $90,247).
The $130,000 (est.) Cleveland Classic is the final open stakes event this year. North America’s top three year-old pacing colts compete for the Classic Crown on Saturday, December 14.
There are 31 colts nominated to the Cleveland Classic, including 2012 standouts Apprentice Hanover (1:49.4 s, $266,998), Dedi’s Dragon (1:52.2 f, $231,617), Good Day Mate (1:52.2 f, $223,633), Mach Pride (1:51.4 s, $433,438), Odds On Equuleus (1:50 m, $417,534) and Twilight Bonfire (1:51 f, $257,848).
In other racing news at Northfield Park, the $100,000 (gtd.) Battle Of Lake Erie is set for Saturday, July 20 and has 30 nominees that have combined career earnings approaching $28 million. The nominated list includes defending champion Classic Rock Nroll (1:50.1 s, $633,408) and two-time Battle of Lake Erie champion Foiled Again (1:48.1 s, $4,638,484).
Battle nominees also include an impressive host of millionaire performers: Annieswesterncard (1:49.3 f, $1,207,436), Aracache Hanover (1:48.1 f, $1,458,949), A Rocknroll Dance (1:48.1 f, $1,931,704), Bolt The Duer (1:47.4 f, $1,116,668), Clear Vision (1:48.2, $1,160,475), Michael’s Power (1:48.1 s, $1,478716), Pet Rock (1:50 s, $1,011,384), Thinking Out Loud (1:47.4 s, $1,265,312) and We Will See (1:47.2 m, $2,548,159).
Northfield Park 2013 Stakes Schedule
Friday, April 26 Courageous Lady
Wednesday, July 3 Ohio Sires Stakes
(two year-old colt pace and trot)
Friday, July 19 Ohio Sires Stakes
(two year-old filly pace and trot)
Saturday, July 20 Battle of Lake Erie
Ohio Sires Stakes
(three year-old colt pace and trot)
Saturday, July 27 Summit County Fair Stakes
Friday, August 16 Ohio Sires Stakes
(three year-old filly pace and trot)
Friday, August 30 Ohio Sires Stakes
(two year-old filly pace and trot)
Saturday, December 14 Cleveland Classic
Weekly Sunday Contest Returns With Aqueduct This Sunday
A new Sunday handicapping contest begins April 7. The free-to-enter $900 weekly contest continues every Sunday through August and features NYRA tracks including Aqueduct, Belmont and Saratoga. The top four finishers every Sunday automatically qualify for the $5,000 Final on Sunday, September 1. The contest is for Players Club members only; new members may sign up that day and enter. Entry forms may be picked up beginning at 11 a.m. and must be returned five minutes prior to first post.
$5 Match Play Every Thursday in April
Visit Northfield Park every Thursday in April to receive a free $5 Match Play from 1-3 p.m. The Match Play promotion is for Players Club members only; new members may sign up that day and receive the Match Play bet. Northfield Park is open Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 12 Noon for early simulcasting. Free admission and free parking daily.
February 21, 2013
Northfield Park Announces 10% Purse Increase
Northfield, OH – In what is anticipated to be the first step in an ongoing upward trend, Northfield Park has announced that purses will increase 10 percent starting Friday night, March 1, 2013.
Although the Hard Rock Rocksino at Northfield Park is still in the early stages of construction, track management is implementing an increase, which is expected to be just the first in a series of increases as the impact of gaming in Ohio, and specifically the $265 million gaming and entertainment facility being built at Northfield Park, is fully realized.
“The best days for horse racing in Ohio lie ahead, and we look forward to opening the Hard Rock Rocksino later this year," said Brock Milstein, Chairman of Northfield Park.
“This only adds to the anticipation felt by everyone at Northfield as we await the opening of the Rocksino,” said Dave Bianconi, Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting. “Our horsemen and fans have supported our racing for years despite a low purse structure compared to tracks in jurisdictions that have additional gaming. The purse increases that will take place here over the next few years will improve our product significantly.”
Northfield races over 200 cards per season, with a current live schedule of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday nights – post time 6:30 PM.
February 5, 2013
2013 USTA World Harness Handicapping Series Includes Northfield
Friday, February 8, 2013, Northfield Park will be hosting the seventh leg of the 2013 World Harness Handicapping Series. The series, featuring10 different tracks is free to enter. The winner earns an entry ($1,000 value) into the USTA $100,000 World Harness Handicapping Championship final at the Meadowlands, to be held Saturday, April 13, 2013.
Contestants who would like to register for the World Harness Handicapping Series, sponsored by the United States Trotting Association, can do so at www.horsetourneys.com. Entries for this on-line contest are limited to the first 1,250 handicappers on a first-come-first-serve basis and are available now.
For Friday’s Northfield contest, each handicapper will select one horse (and an alternate in case of a late scratch) for a $2 win and $2 place wager on each race. All on-line selections need to be submitted prior to post time of the first race.
Northfield has fifteen (15) filly and mare pacing events scheduled for the Friday night program with first race post time of 6:30 pm. Contestants receive Free TrackMaster Platinum Past Performances of the entire Northfield card at www.ustrotting.com. Handicappers seeking further insight are encouraged to read the Ayers Above Handicapping Selections by visiting www.northfieldpark.com.
January 30, 2013
Instant Glide Wins Fourth Straight
Instant Glide, trotted home for her fourth straight win Wednesday (January 30) in Northfield Park’s ninth race. The five-year old is owned and trained by Deborah DeWolfe of Richwood, Ohio. Robert Dinning has been aboard Instant Glide for the last three victories and driver JD Wengerd started the mare on her win streak.
Wednesday’s triumph in 2:01.4, increased Instant Glide’s (Master Glide-Impact Red-SJ’s Photo) lifetime wins tally to 11 and her earnings to $15,830.
Her 2013 undefeated season is back on the line as she drew post three in Northfield Park’s opening race on Monday, February 4.
January 23, 2013
Broodmare My Moira had two daughters win over Northfield’s Flying Turns on Friday (January 18). Moira’s Bliss won the fourth race in 1:58.2, while Moira’s Intended won race seven in 1:58.4. My Moira has eight foals; six have taken marks for combined earnings of $329,000.
One lucky bettor had to be smiling when the horses crossed the finish line in Friday’s (January 18) 15th race. My Sweet Lorelei (38-1) won, Sweetie Sue Cam (48-1) finished second and Its A Sham (90-1) showed. The 4-7-8 combination returned $14,583.60 for the $1.00 Trifecta wager.
Local trainers Scott Cox and Martin Wollam accepted awards at the annual Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association banquet on Saturday, January 19, 2013.
Scott Cox’s Rose Run Nellie (Trainforthefuture – Lilyad – Armbro Iliad) was Ohio’s Three-Year-Old Filly Trotter of the year for 2012. Rose Run Nellie won nine of 23 races last year. Her victories included Ohio’s Triple Crown races: the $21,900 Ohio State Fair Stake at Scioto Downs, $100,000 Ohio Sires Stakes Championship, again at Scioto, and $28,804 Ohio Breeders’ Championship at Delaware. Rose Run Nellie trotted her lifetime mark of 1:56 at The Meadows and has bankrolled $138,122.
Northfield Park Wall of Famer Martin Wollam accepted the award for 2012 Two-Year-Old Filly Trotter of the year for Contessa Leigh (Full Count – Howl – Overcomer). Contessa Leigh won five of seven starts in 2012. Three of her five wins included winning the Ohio Triple Crown. Contessa Leigh trotted her fastest mile of 1:58.4 at Scioto Downs and earned $93,616 for the yea
January 4, 2013
Merriman Wins Driving Title; Loney Tops Trainers
Aaron Merriman topped the Northfield Park 2012 leading driver standings, winning 315 races over the Flying Turns. His nearest competitor, Ryan Stahl, drove 258 winners. Tyler Smith (204), Kurt Sugg (179) and Ronnie Wrenn Jr. (165) completed the top five reinsmen.
The 34-year-old Merriman, a resident of Northfield, Ohio, has eight driving titles under his belt. He has won three driving titles at Raceway Park in Toledo and four previous titles at Northfield Park between 2006 and 2009. Injuries sidelined Merriman for parts of 2010 and 2011, but a healthy 2012 propelled him to his fifth title. He split his driving time among several different places, but he has been a regular at Northfield Park and The Meadows.
Merriman garnered a total of 608 wins this past year, ranking him 5th nationally. David Palone (675), Tim Tetrick (670), George Napolitano Jr (645) and George Brennan (622) compiled more victories this year.
Merriman began driving in 1997 and has won 5,562 races and purses of $26,795,202. Merriman remembers his first win aboard a pacing mare named Albert’s Filly at Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio. “All the wins feel the same,” explained Merriman. “The winner’s circle is always happy and you never get tired of making people happy.” Merriman’s richest win came in a $300,000 Kentucky Sire Stakes Final aboard Palazzo Princess, and his fastest win was timed in 1:50.0.
Northfield Park trainer Harla “Renae” Loney captured the top training honor for 2012, garnering 115 local victories. Larry Clabaugh finished second with 85 wins. Calvin Hollar (68), Kevin Ehrhardt (61) and Don Pfister (61) rounded out the top five conditioners’ list.
Renae, originally from Martin, Kentucky, recently purchased a home with her husband Brian and relocated to Northfield, Ohio. They have three children: 12 year-old son Gannun, 8 year-old son Payton and 3 year-old daughter Polly.
Renae is a graduate of Morehead State University, where she competed in the equestrian program. After graduation she taught elementary school in Floyd County, Kentucky for two years before pursuing her passion in horse racing. Loney, 36, said horses are in her blood. “My grandpa and dad both had horses and I guess I was just brought up in it.”
Loney currently trains a stable of 27 horses and has garnered 259 career victories and purse earnings of $482,288. She emphasized her love of horses and working with them on a daily basis. “My favorite thing, however, is getting to the winner’s circle.”
December 8, 2012
Bolt The Duer Wins The 2012 Cleveland Classic
Bolt The Duer, owned by All Star Racing Inc. and trained by Peter Foley, won the $130,000 Cleveland Classic for 3 year-old pacing colts in 1:51 at Northfield Park Saturday night.
Bolt The Duer briefly led through the first 1/8 of the mile before releasing Pet Rock (Douglas McNair) to the front through an opening fraction of 27.2. Pet Rock yielded to Thinking Out Loud (David Miller) through a half in 54.4. Thinking out Loud led through three-quarters at 1:22.1 before tiring in the stretch. Driver Mark MacDonald tipped Bolt The Duer around the last turn and got up to win by ¾ of a length over Pet Rock. Also completing this year’s Classic the field were Rockin Finish, Mortal Zin and A Rocknroll Dance.
“He’s got great tactical speed,” said MacDonald, “He’s a great horse and he dug in down the stretch and got the job done. He just never stops coming.” The win came just three days after the passing of one of Bolt The Duer’s owners. John M. Como Sr. died Wednesday at the age of 88. “Mr. Como was a gentleman to be around,” commented MacDonald. “He loved this horse and he loved racing.”
It was the 15 career victory for Bolt The Duer and increased his bankroll to $1,116,668. This son of Ponder, out of the Artsplace mare, Wonderbolt has a lifetime mark of 1:47.4.
“I am just delighted to end the season like this,” said Foley. “Although this was the last race for this year, he will be back in 2013. He is a beautiful horse and I am sure he will get even better. We look forward to racing him next year.”
Bolt The Duer paid $10.00, $4.60 and $2.20. Pet Rock, paid $5.60 and $2.20 to place and Thinking Out Loud paid $2.10 to show.
December 5, 2012
Field Set for 2012 Cleveland Classic
The $130,000 Cleveland Classic, one of Northfield Park’s premier races, is set for Saturday, December 8, 2012. The final open stakes event on this year’s national harness racing calendar, the Classic always draws an impressive slate of equine athletes as well as North America’s top drivers. This year is no exception.
Thinking Out Loud has drawn the rail and has been named the 2-1 morning line favorite. He goes to post for owners Robert McIntosh Stables of LaSalle, Ontario, CXS Stables of Liberty Center, Ohio and Al McIntosh Holdings of Leamington, Ontario. Thinking Out Loud has bankrolled an impressive $1,249,712. He boasts ten career victories including his triumph in the $1,470,000 North America Cup at Mohawk Raceway, when he paced his career-best time of 1:47.4. Trainer Robert McIntosh brings Buckeye native David Miller in to steer.
Pet Rock carries a 4-1 morning line and starts from post two. He is a son of Rocknroll Hanover, with earnings just shy of $1,000,000. Among his 10 lifetime wins is a victory scored earlier this month in the $215,000 Windy City Pace at Maywood. He paced a 1:50 career best at Woodbine Racetrack for owner Frank Bellino of Bronxville, NY. Pet Rock is one of two horses that will start for trainer Virgil Morgan, Jr. Morgan has called on Douglas McNair to drive.
Bolt The Duer drew post-position three and has morning line odds of 7-2. He starts already having won fourteen races in his career, including this year’s $415,820 Messenger at Yonkers Raceway. The son of Ponder is owned by All Star Racing, Inc., of Towaco, NJ and trained by Peter Foley. Bolt The Duer has bankrolled $1,051,668 and took a lifetime mark of 1:47.4 at The Meadows. Foley has secured Mark McDonald to be in the sulky.
Rockin Finish is 12-1 and is the second starter being prepped by trainer Virgil Morgan. Jr. Rockin Finish is the only horse in the field to have started over Northfield Park’s Flying Turns, where he posted a 1:55.4 victory in October. The son of Rocknroll Hanover is owned by Gerrie Tucker of Montreal, Quebec. Rockin Finish has garnered six career victories and earnings of $117,192. His 1:51.3 lifetime best was paced at Woodbine Racetrack. Young local driving talent Tyler Smith has been named to drive and will start from post four.
Mortal Zin goes to post for trainer Ronald Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable of Fredricktown, PA, Weaver Bruscemi of Canonsburg, PA, Slaughter Racing Stable of Prospect, KY and Lawrence Karr of Randolph, NJ. This is one of four sons of Rocknroll Hanover in this year’s Classic field. Matt Kakaley has been named to drive and will score from post-position five. Mortal Zin has eight career victories under his belt and comes with a lifetime mark of 1:51.1 taken at Harrah’s Philadelphia. Mortal Zin looks to add to his $154,115 bankroll, but at morning line odds of 15-1, he is the field’s longshot.
A Rocknroll Dance racing out of post-position six, at morning line odds of 6-1, is approaching $2,000,000 in career earnings. The Ohio-based son of Rocknroll Hanover is owned by A RockNRoll Dance Stable of Wauseon, Ohio and trained by Ohio-based trainer James Mulinix. The horse has garnered eleven lifetime wins, including this year’s $600,000 Meadowlands Pace. A Rocknroll Dance paced his career best of 1:48.3 at Harrah’s Philadelphia. Peter Wrenn has been named to drive the top earner in the field.
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The $130,000 Cleveland Classic has been slated as Saturday’s eleventh race and has an approximate post time of 10:50 p.m. The stakes event will be the fourth leg of the Pick-4 with a guaranteed pool of $10,000 and a reduced takeout rate of just 14%.
The 2012 $130,000 Cleveland Classic Field:
Post Horse Trainer Driver M/L
1 Thinking Out Loud Robert McIntosh David Miller 2-1
2 Pet Rock Virgil Morgan, Jr. Douglas McNair 4-1
3 Bolt The Duer Peter Foley Mark McDonald 7-2
4 Rockin Finish Virgil Morgan, Jr. Tyler Smith 12-1
5 Mortal Zin Ron Burke Matt Kakaley 15-1
6 A Rocknroll Dance Jim Mulinix Peter Wrenn 6-1
November 20, 2012
Sophomore Superstars Among Horses Eligible to Cleveland Classic
Northfield Park’s $140,000 (est.) Cleveland Classic is the final open stakes event on this year’s national harness racing calendar. North America’s top three year-old pacing colts will take the stage to compete for this year’s Classic crown on Saturday, December 8. Among the 38 horses eligible, five of this year’s top sophomore standouts are probable.
A Rocknroll Dance is approaching $2,000,000 in career earnings. The son of Rocknroll Hanover is owned by A RockNRoll Dance Stable of Wauseon, Ohio and trained by Ohio-based trainer James Mulinix. The horse has garnered eleven lifetime wins, including this year’s $600,000 Meadowlands Pace. A Rocknroll Dance paced his career best of 1:48.3 at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
Bolt The Duer already has won fourteen races in his career, including this year’s $415,820 Messenger at Yonkers Raceway. The son of Ponder is owned by All Star Racing, Inc., of Towaco, NJ and trained by Peter Foley. Bolt The Duer has bankrolled $1,036,063 and took a lifetime mark of 1:47.4 at The Meadows.
Dynamic Youth, winner of this year’s $322,716 Cane Pace, has earnings of $676,007. This son of Bettor’s Delight is trained by Aaron Lambert and owned by J&T Silva Stables of Long Beach, NY, Kenneth Tucci of Wood Ridge, NJ and C&G Racing Stable of Roslyn Heights, NY. His 1:48.3 lifetime mark was paced at Tioga Downs.
Pet Rock is a son of Rocknroll Hanover with earnings just shy of $1,000,000. Among his 10 lifetime wins is a victory scored earlier this month in the $215,000 Windy City Pace. Pet Rock paced a 1:50 career best at Woodbine Racetrack for trainer Virgil Morgan, Jr. and owner Frank Bellino of Bronxville, NY.
Thinking Out Loud has banked $1,190,825 for owners Robert McIntosh Stables of LaSalle, Ontario, CXS Stables of Liberty Center, Ohio and Al McIntosh Holdings of Leamington, Ontario. He is trained by part-owner Robert McIntosh. The most notable of his nine career victories was his triumph in the $1,470,000 North America Cup at Mohawk Raceway, when he paced his career-best time of 1:47.4.
November 13, 2012
Page and Merriman Share Weekend Spotlight
Drivers Chris Page and Aaron Merriman each dominated a weekend night to win five races over Northfield Park’s Flying Turns. Page won five on Friday (November 9) and Merriman won his quintuplet of races on Saturday (November 10).
Page drove McArdle Direct ($2.60), The Sweet Dion ($4.40), Ayla Hanover ($5.60), Emma Rose Ben ($12.60) and Royal Fortune ($3.00) to victory. Friday’s wins represent five of Page’s 1,683 career driving victories. The Mt. Vernon native started driving in 2000 and has since garnered $6,518,844 in purse earnings.
On Saturday Aaron Merriman drove Mystical Sam ($10.20), High Heels N Spurs ($5.20), Masteroftheclass ($5.20), Richie The Clown (3.20) and Mainline Hall ($16.40) to victory. Merriman leads the 2012 Northfield Park driver standings. He has notched 5,455 career wins with $26,274,372 in purse earnings.
Richie The Clown Continues to Have Career Year
Northfield Park stalwart Richie The Clown posted his 18th win of 2012 on Saturday, ranking him the 4th winningest horse in North America this year. Only CMR Maybe Loaded (20 at Rideau Carleton), Albion (19 at Cal Expo and Harrah’s Philadelphia) and Hidden Hall (19 at Georgian Downs and Sudbury Downs) have more wins than Richie The Clown.
The six-year-old son of Riches Hanover and Giggles The Clown is owned by Rhonda Conn and trained by Harla Loney. Richie The Clown has 29 career victories and lifetime earnings of $121,419.
Hatfield Wins Billings Midwest Final
Bud Hatfield was victorious in the $6,000 Billings Midwest regional final at Northfield Park on Saturday. Hatfield steered Wolf’s Jann in the gate-to-tire victory, stopping the timer in 2:00.
The Billings $25,000 Delvin Miller Memorial Gold Cup, $15,000 Silver Cup and $7,500 Bronze Cup championships are set for Sunday, November 18 at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
October 10, 2012
New Post Time on Mondays and Tuesdays
Northfield Park is announcing a 6:30 p.m. post-time on Mondays and Tuesdays beginning Monday, October 15. “The new early post time will allow for 15-race programs in order to accommodate our abundant horse population,” commented Executive Vice President of Racing/Simulcasting Dave Bianconi.
Monday and Tuesdays will continue to offer a $10,000 guaranteed pick-4 pool, which starts in race 8. Friday and Saturday night racing continues with a regular post time of 7:00 p.m.
FREE Admission and Free Parking Every Day
Beginning Saturday, October 13, Northfield Park will offer guests FREE Admission to the grandstand and clubhouse as well as FREE Parking everyday all day.
September 26, 2012
Merriman Takes Lead in Northfield Park Driver Standings
Aaron Merriman has been feverishly winning races and has taken the lead in the 2012 Driver Standings. Merriman has 223 victories over Northfield’s Flying Turns so far this year. Ryan Stahl (218), Kurt Sugg (134), Wyatt Irvine (124) and Robin Miller (123) round out the top five reinsmen.
The 34-year-old Merriman is a resident of Northfield, Ohio and is in search of his eighth career driving title. Aaron won three driving titles at Raceway Park in Toledo and four previous titles at Northfield Park.
Like many local drivers, Aaron Merriman has been splitting his driving among several different places. Merriman has been a regular at Northfield Park and The Meadows. He has also been to various other racing surfaces to drive in stakes races.
Aaron’s 2012 total victory tally is 427, which ranks him 5th nationally for the most wins. Only David Palone (543), Tim Tetrick (528), George Napolitano Jr (467) and George Brennan (466) have won more races this year.
Merriman began driving in 1997 and has won 5,378 races and purses of $25,751,643. Merriman remembers his first win aboard a pacing mare named Albert’s Filly at Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio. Although there are over 5,000 to choose from, Merriman says that he has no favorite win. “They all feel the same,” explained Merriman. “The winner’s circle is always happy and you never get tired of making people happy.”
Merriman’s richest win ever came in a $300,000 Kentucky Sire Stakes Final aboard Palazzo Princess. His fastest win was race timed in 1:50.0. He rates the toughest horse he has ever driven as Midnight Jewel.
New Faces at Northfield
Several new faces who have shown up to drive over Northfield Park’s Flying Turns are making a quick impact. Michiganders Ronnie Wrenn Jr. and Jason Merriman have begun piloting at Northfield. Robert Dinning now calls Cleveland home, while Greg Grismore has returned to drive on Saturdays. In addition, Tyler Smith, in an interview during Little Brown Jug week in Delaware, Ohio stated that he will return to Northfield Park to compete this winter.
Northfield Park continues to offer promotions to spark fan interest in receiving the biggest bang for their handicapping bucks.
- The Belmont Park Handicapping Contest continues every Sunday thru October 21. The contest is free to enter and offers $900 in weekly cash prizes. The $5,000 Championship Final is scheduled for Sunday, October 28.
- Every Monday and Tuesday Northfield offers a $10,000 guaranteed Pick-4 pool.
- Every Tuesday, beginning October 9, all Players Club Members will receive a free $5 Match Play from 1-3 pm. In addition, Northfield will open at 12 noon for simulcast action each and every Tuesday for the remainder of 2012.
- Every Thursday beginning October 4, it’s Free Voucher Thursdays. Players Club Members can register for the chance to win a $25 voucher. Drawings will be held every 15 minutes from 1 to 4 pm.
- Every Friday in October is Freebie Friday. All guests receive Free Admission and Free Parking all day and night, as well as $1 Live Programs and $1 12 oz. drafts.
- Don’t miss the special Ohio Lottery Spin and Win promotion on Friday, October 5. All guests between 6 and 8 pm receive one free Ohio Lottery envelope. Inside each envelope is an Ohio Lottery coupon good for an Ohio Lottery Instant Ticket. Northfield Park is fast becoming the lucky place for Ohio Lottery winners. On Saturday, September 15, a $ 1,000,000 Powerball ticket was sold at Northfield Park, joining a previous $10,000,000 winning Super Lotto ticket sold at the track in 1998.
- Northfield’s Pick-3, Pick-4 and Pick-5 offer a reduced takeout rate of 14%, the lowest in harness racing.
August 31, 2012
Ohio Sires Stakes Freshman Filly Results
Ohio Sires Stakes racing highlighted Northfield Park’s Friday (August 31) program where two-year-old filly pacers and trotters squared off. The fillies raced in their final leg of the 2012 juvenile match-ups, presenting their last chance to earn points for the Ohio Sires Stakes Championships. The championships will be held at Scioto Downs in Columbus on Saturday, September 8.
The trotters took to the stage in Race 1 for the $17,000 first division. Contessa Leigh (Full Count-Howl-Overcomer) posted a gate-to-wire performance to win by 1¼ length. The partnership of G&B Racing of New Wilmington, Pennsylvania and Patricia Wollam of Vienna, Ohio are the owners. Northfield Park Wall of Fame inductee, Marty Wollam, trains and drove the filly through quarters of 29.1, 1:01.1, 1:30.2 and 2:00. The victory was the third win in five starts for Contessa Leigh, who now has career earning of $29,824. Finishing behind the winner were Royal Fricassee, Diplomats Mistress, Ima Count and Whizzy Izzy. Contessa Leigh returned her backers $3.00 for a $2.00 win wager.
Trainer Marty Wollam’s barn struck again in Race 3, when Sheza Lavec (Master Lavec-Balmira CC-King Pine) took the $17,000 second division for two-year old filly Ohio-bred trotters. Sheza Lavec started from post-two and led her rivals from start to finish through fractions of 29.4, 1:01.2, 1:31.2 and 2:02.2. Kurt Sugg drove for owner Bob Troyer of Middlefield, Ohio. Sheza Lavec has six prior starts but was winless entering tonight’s event. Tonight’s victory raises her earnings to $16,533. Completing the race were Look At Count, TT’s Megapixel, Trainer Dunn, Tiffany’s Victory and Pinehall Lady. Sheza Lavec paid $27.20 to win.
The final Ohio Sires Stake of the evening, Race 10, was the $25,000 4th leg for two year-old filly pacers. Igottafeelinfran (Feelin Friskie-Fran Anna-Expensive Scooter) sat chilly through early fractional times of 29 and 58.1, before coming first over and brushing to the front. Igottafeelinfran tripped the ¾ beam in 1:25.4 and held on to win by a neck in 1:56.3. Dan Noble drove Igottafeelingfran for owners Jerry Zosel of Columbus, Ohio, Kathy Ratcliff of Orient, Ohio and Kimberly Dailey of Mechanicsburg, Ohio. Jim Dailey trains Igottafeelingfran, who now has three career victories in seven lifetime starts and earnings of $40,200. Crossing the line after her was a hard-charging Cating Around, One Naughty Lady, Norma Jean, Cosswind Colleen, Always D Lady, Melissa L and Happy N Memphis. Pink Camo was scratched. Igottafeelinfran returned $3.80 to win.
August 31, 2012
Northfield Park to Host Freshman Colt and Gelding Ohio Sires Stakes on Saturday
Ohio Sires Stakes action will top Northfield Park’s Saturday (September 1) program, when two-year-old colt and gelding pacers and trotters are featured. They race in the fourth and last preliminary leg of the 2012 Ohio Sires Stakes, their last chance to earn points to be eligible to the OSS Finals. Those championships will be held at Scioto Downs in Columbus on Saturday, September 8, 2012.
The trotters lead off in the evening’s fifth race and vie for a purse of $25,000. Undefeated Heza Rube (Master Lavec-Rubicella-Awesome Goal) is the overwhelming 3-5 morning-line favorite for owner Bob Troyer of Middlefield, Ohio. Northfield Park Wall of Fame inductee, Marty Wollam, trains the gelding and has called upon regular driver Kurt Sugg to steer. Heza Rube, making his sixth start, has already posted earnings of $47,585. He has a lifetime mark of 1:59.2, which makes him the only starter in the race to have earned a mark under 2:00. Heza Rube will leave the gate from post three. Completing the field are Flashy Cash, Neely Spring, Masterdream Chaser, Final Breath, Chet N Spanky and Master Miracle.
Freshman colt and gelding pacers get their chance in Race 9, which also goes for a $25,000 pot. That Friske Feelin (Feelin Friskie-Marquee Event-Mark Johnathan) is the 1A and the stronger part of a coupled entry that also has stablemate Phantom Flasher competing. That Friske Feelin is owned by partners Howard Taylor and Edwin Gold of Pennsylvania and Richard Lombardo of Solon, Ohio. Kyle Ater has been named to drive by trainer Jim Arledge Jr. That Friske Feelin is undefeated in his five career starts, sports earnings of $42,158 and posted a 1:53.4 career best at Scioto Downs. Despite being plagued with the eight hole, that Friske Feelin and entry-mate Phantom Flasher (post position one) have been installed as 5-2 morning line favorites in a field of nine. They’ll face Feelin Lika Winner, Sectionline Road, My Myster E, Hanky L, Retrieve Forever, Forever Kissed, and My Last Chance.
Saturday’s first race post time is 7:00 p.m.
August 30, 2012
Northfield Park to Host Freshman Filly Ohio Sires Stakes
Ohio Sires Stakes racing will highlight Northfield Park’s Friday (August 31) program when two-year-old filly pacers and trotters square off. The fillies are racing in the fourth and final leg of their 2012 juvenile match-ups, their last chance to earn points to be eligible to the Ohio Sires Stakes Championships. They will be held at Scioto Downs in Columbus on Saturday, September 8.
The trotters will start Friday’s show in Race 1 for the $17,000 first split. Royal Fricassee (Royal Strength-Fricassee-Lucky Almahurst) is the 8-5 morning-line favorite for owners Suanne Kochilla of North Royalton, Ohio, June Crawford of Parma, Ohio, Ray Crawford of Northfield, Ohio and Ray Hann of Chagrin Falls, Ohio. Co-owner Ray Crawford is also the filly’s trainer. He has called upon regular driver Robin Miller to steer. Royal Fricassee makes her seventh lifetime start, having already posted four victories, including both of her most recent starts. Royal Fricassee has a lifetime mark of 2:01.4, taken at Toledo’s Raceway Park, and has earned $33,922 so far this season. She will start from post four. Also completing the first division will be Diplomats Mistress, Contessa Leigh, Whizzy Izzy, and Ima Count.
Race 3 will be the $17,000 second division for two-year old filly Ohio-bred trotters. Trainer Thomas Daumit will start Trainer Dunn (Neely Dunn-Personal Trainer-Muscles Yankee) as the 9-5 morning-line favorite. She starts from post one and faces five other rivals. Tony Hall is scheduled to drive for owner Raneri Farms LLC of Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Neely Dunn enters off a 2:03.2 maiden-breaking score at Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio. Trainer Dunn has five starts this season and has earned $16,528. Sheza Lavec, Pinehill Lady, Look At Count, Tiffany’s Victory and TT’s Megapixel complete the line-up.
Freshman filly pacers will take to the stage in Race 10, the $25,000 fourth leg of the Ohio Sires Stakes. Buckeye sensation Pink Camo (Pine Valley-CG’s Gem-Shady Character) is the 2-1 morning-line favorite for owners Burke Racing Stable of Fredericktown, Pennsylvania, Weaver Bruscemi LLC of Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, Jason Melillo of Powell, Ohio and Richard Suda of Darien, Illinois. Tony Hall has been named to drive by trainer Ron Burke. Pink Camo has six career starts and is on a four-race win streak. She sports earnings of $46,445 and posted a career best 1:52.3 at Scioto Downs in her most recent effort. Pink Camo starts from post seven in a field that consists of Crosswind Colleen, Igottafeelinfran, One Naughty Lady, Norma Jean, Melissa L, Always D Lady and Happy N Memphis.
Friday’s first race post time is 7:00 p.m.
August 27, 2012
Northfield Park News and Notes
Every Day Match Play Continues: Patrons continue to cash in on Northfield Park’s newest promotion. Each and every day patrons receive a free $5.00 match play. The promotional times to receive your free $5.00 are Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday from 5:00 until 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 2:00 p.m. Match Play runs through Sunday, September 2.
Upcoming Stakes Action: Ohio Sires Stakes racing will highlight Labor Day weekend beginning Friday, August 31 when two-year-old filly pacers and trotters square off. Then on Saturday, September 1, the freshmen colt and gelding pacers and trotters take center stage.
Both fillies and colts are racing in their fourth and final leg of the 2012 Ohio Sires Stakes, their last chance to earn points to be eligible to the Ohio Sires Stakes Championships. They will be held at Scioto Downs in Columbus on Saturday, September 8, 2012.
Labor Day Happenings: There will be no live racing on Northfield’s half-mile oval on Labor Day (September 3), but both day and night simulcasting action will be in full swing. Northfield Park opens at noon on Labor Day for patrons to wager on all of the top harness and thoroughbred racetracks.
Labor Day is also Dollar Day at Northfield. Patrons can choose from hot dogs, soft drinks, Miller Lite 12 oz. draft beers and much more on the dollar menu. Guests will also enjoy free parking, admission and private TV carrels all day and night.
August 21, 2012
MERRIMAN’S BIG NIGHT: Aaron Merriman drove five winners on Saturday (August 18). Merriman piloted Noble Trick ($5.40) to a 1:54.2 victory in the $16,500 second division of the Ohio Sires Stakes for three-year old colt and gelding pacers. Merriman’s other winners included Beau Jet ($3.80), Tylers Rendevous ($7.00), Left’em Standing ($3.20) and Play Right ($14.20).
Thirty-four-year-old Merrman started driving in 1997 and has since garnered 5,322 career victories and $25,293,034 in purse earnings.
BATTLE OF LAKE ERIE CHAMPION SCORES BIG AGAIN: Classic Rock Nroll, the 2012 Battle of Lake Erie Champion, scored another big win in the $122,500 Gerrity Memorial on Saturday, August 18 at Saratoga Raceway in New York. Dan Noble, who piloted Classic Rock Nroll to his Battle win, went to Saratoga to drive him again. Noble steered the horse to a perfect trip and won the race in 1:51.4.
Classic Rock Nroll (Rocknroll Hanover-Classic Wish-Armbro Emerson) now has career earnings of $566,300 and a lifetime mark of 1:50.3, taken over Northfield Park’s Flying Turns in his Battle of Lake Erie victory.
JIMMY SMITH SCORES RECENT MILESTONE: Driver Jimmy Smith recently drove his 1,000th driving victory at the Richland County Fair in Mansfield, Ohio on Monday, August 6, 2012 aboard two-year-old colt trotter Sundaysacoming.
Smith, a forty-three year-old Massillon, Ohio resident, has been driving since 1986 and now has 1,005 career victories and purse earnings in excess of $4 million.
EVERYDAY IS A MATCH PLAY DAY: Northfield Park’s newest promotion is sure to have a lot of fans smiling. Each and every day, starting Wednesday, August 22, patrons receive a free $5.00 match play wager. The promotional times to receive your free $5.00 are Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday from 5:00 till 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday from noon till 2:00 p.m. The match play promotion runs through Sunday, September 2.
RUA LOOKER GETS CAREER WIN 50: RUA Looker trotted home for his 50th career victory on Monday (August 20) at Northfield Park. The ten-year old has 225 career starts, winning 50 times, and finishing second and third 25 and 24 times respectively. RUA Looker (Ilooklikemymom-Carry Marge-Carry The Message) has career earnings of $188,322 and a lifetime mark of 1:56.1 taken at Balmoral Park at age five. The trotter’s richest win was the $30,900 Ohio State Fair Race for three-year old colt and gelding trotters at Scioto Downs in 2005.
Kurt Sugg, of Polk, Ohio, trains, drives and co-owns RUA Looker with Paul Troyer, of Millersburg, Ohio.
August 18, 2012
Sophomore Colt and Gelding Ohio Sires Stake Recaps
On Saturday, August 18 Northfield Park hosted four divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes racing action as part of the 13-race program. Three-year-old colt and gelding trotters and pacers each competed in two divisions.
The night’s first race was the $16,500 first pacing division. Mr I Am (Western Spirit-Swift Passion-Towner’s Big Guy) used the inside post draw to secure the early lead and defended that lead against all challengers through fractional times of 27.3, 57.1, 1:26.1 and 1:55. The win represents Mr I Am’s 11th victory of 2012, 17th of his career and pushed his earning in excess of $50,000. The 1:55 clocking is a new lifetime mark for the colt. Thomas Phillips of Michigan owns Mr I Am. Robert Dinning drove the colt for trainer Tricia Shepard. Finishing behind Mr I Am were Feelin Cornered, Lol Ken Win, Tatas Flash and Jetstream Friskie. Mr I Am returned $4.80 to win.
In Race 2 Count Me In (Full Count-Howl-Overcomer) took the $18,000 first division for three-year old colt and gelding Ohio-bred trotters for Northfield Park Wall of Fame trainer Marty Wollam. Count Me In started from post-one and led at every call while being pressured through fractions of 27.3, 56.2, 1:27.2 and 1:59.3. Driven by Sam “Chip” Noble III it was his 5,001st driving win. Count Me In is owned by Patricia Wollam of Vienna, Ohio and Acadia Farms Inc. of Canfield, Ohio. This victory was the 10th career win for Count Me In and pushes his earnings to nearly $120,000. Also completing the race were Countmymuscles, Master’s Fly Trap, Rockin H Cheery O, Jailbird Jesse, Willie Bay and Blazing Future. Count Me In was the favorite and paid $3.00 to win.
The pacers returned in the third race, with Noble Trick winning the $16,500 second division. Aaron Merriman drove the colt for trainer Ron Steck, who also co-owns with Michael Claussen of Macedonia, Ohio, Darlene Hawkins of Centerburg, Ohio and Julie Hawkins of Fredricktown, Ohio. Noble Trick (Nobleland Sam-Tricky Trippy-Towner’s Big Guy) led his rivals from start to finish throughout quarters times of 27.2, 57.2, 1:25.3 and 1:54.2. This victory represents Noble Trick’s 8th career win and pushes his earning to nearly $80,000. Finishing in succession after the winner were Man He Can Skoot, Friskies Cheatsuit, Duke Uh Brava, Larry’s Dream and Gun Show. Noble Trick returned $5.40 to win.
The final Ohio Sires Stake of the evening, Race 9, was the $18,000 second division for three year-old colt and gelding trotters. We Belong Together was the beneficiary of a ground saving effort, riding the rail and exploding up the passing lane to win in 1:58.3. David Myers drove We Belong Together (Jailhouse Jesse-Sugar Chip-Pine Chip) for owner/trainer Theodore Gawron of Florida. The win is the 6th career victory for the colt and pushed his earnings to nearly $50,000. Crossing the line after We Belong Together were Rock N Jessie, Its Jesse Time, Captain Jesse, Al Brown, Jesse’s Touch, Rose Run Nolan and Cody Coy. We Belong Together returned $58.20 to win.
August 17, 2012
Sophomore Filly Ohio Sires Stake Recaps from Northfield Park
On Friday, August 17 Northfield Park hosted four divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes racing action as part of the 13-race program. Three-year-old filly trotters and pacers each competed in two divisions.
The trotters took to the stage first in Race 1 and provided a thrilling dead-heat finish between Rose Run Nellie and Tesla. Rose Run Nellie led throughout with Tesla sitting the pocket and closing up the passing lane. Scott Cox Stables, LLC of Streetsboro, Ohio owns Rose Run Nellie. Scott Cox trains and drove the filly through quarters of 28.3, 58.2, 1:27.4 and 1:58.4. Tesla is owned by Myron Brown of Arcanum, Ohio and Beth Simons of Russia, Ohio. Wyatt Irvine drove. The clocking represents a lifetime mark for Tesla. Finishing behind the dead-heated winners were Cinca De Miya, Yankee’s Victory, Jessica Rayne and Bosco’s Angel. Rose Run Nellie returned $3.00 to win while Tesla returned her backers $9.40 for a $2.00 win wager.
In Race 3 Standing Danette took the $17,200 first division for three-year old filly Ohio-bred pacers for trainer Jim Arledge, Jr. The Stand Forever filly from the Threefold mare Emkea started from the rail and sustained a successful first-over bid to easily overhaul Wind River Cat, who set soft early fractions of 28.1, 58.2 and 1:27. Dan Noble drove for owner Sharon Edelman of Gahanna, Ohio. It was the 10th career victory for Standing Danette, who paced home in 28.4, stopping the clock at 1:55.4. Completing the race were Wind River Cat, Buckeye Beauty, Forever Lover, Friskie Beauty and Let’sgoalltheway. Standing Danette was the overwhelming favorite and paid $2.80 to win.
The trotters returned in the fifth race, with Easter Rosetta winning the $17,100 second division. Elliott Deaton drove the filly for trainer Rickie Williams and owners Ray Williams of Woodsfield, Ohio and Robert Burkhart of Sycamore Valley, Ohio. The daughter of Trainforthefuture from the Armbro Laser mare KW’s Lasermachine had a perfect garden trip through solid early fractions of 27.4 and 57.3. Deaton tipped the filly just past the half and Easter Rosetta tripped the remaining fractional times of 1:27.4 and 2:00.1. The victory represents Easter Rosetta’s 6th career win. Finishing in succession after the winner were Wardon’s Daughter, TT’s Taterchip, Annie’s Master, Rose Run Natassia and Lady At Bat. Sandy’s Star was scratched sick. Easter Rosetta returned $14.60 to win.
The final Ohio Sires Stake of the evening, Race 8, was the $17,200 second division for three year-old filly pacers. Royalness was the beneficiary of fast early fractions, circling the field to win in 1:56.2. Chris Page drove Royalness (Mantacular-Queensplace-Artsplace) for owner Melissa LeVan of Woodstock, Ohio and trainer Herb LeVan. Page sat the filly in the back through opening quarters of 27, 57 and 1:26.1 before swinging her three wide and passing the entire field. Crossing the line after Royalness was Special Lady D, Feelin Rosie, Little Friskie, Kates Beer Bunny, B Moble and Kennon’s Flash. Royalness was an upset winner returning $34.40 to win.
August 17, 2012
Sires Stakes Sophomore Colts and Geldings on Saturday
Saturday concludes consecutive days of Ohio Sires Stakes racing at Northfield Park. Following sophomore filly pacers and trotters on Friday (August 17), both three-year old colt and gelding pacers and trotters will compete on Saturday.
The action begins in Race 1 in a $16,500 pace division. Jetstream Friskie (Feelin Friskie-Isn’t She Cute-Beach Towel) is the 2-1 morning-line favorite for owner James Wampler of London, Ohio. The colt’s trainer, Joe Essig, has enlisted Kayne Kauffman to drive. Jetstream Friskie makes his 11th start of 2012. He has seven career victories and earnings of nearly $50,000. He just posted his lifetime mark of 1:52.3 at Scioto Downs in his most recent race. Jetstream Friskie will start from post four. Also entered in the first division are Mr I Am, Tatas Flash, Feelin Cornered and Lol Ken Win.
Race 2 will be the $18,000 first division for three-year old Ohio-bred colt and gelding trotters. Northfield Park Wall of Fame trainer Marty Wollam will start Count Me In (Full Count-Howl-Overcomer) as the 5-2 morning-line favorite. Count Me In starts from post one with Sam “Chip” Noble III scheduled to drive for owners Patricia Wollam of Vienna, Ohio and Acadia Farms, Inc. of Canfield, Ohio. Count Me In has twenty career starts and is looking for his 10th victory. His career earnings of $110,218 include a 1:56.1 win at Scioto Downs. Count Me In’s six rivals will be Willie Bay, Countmymuscles, Blazing Future, Master’s Fly Trap, Rockin H Cheery O and Jailbird Jesse.
Sophomore colt and gelding pacers return to the stage to compete in Race 3 for the $16,500 second division of the Ohio Sire Stakes. Gun Show (Feelin Friskie-Cagey Myrt-Set The Style) is the 5-2 morning-line favorite for owners Milton Leeman of Blacklick, Ohio and Dustin Arledge of Orient, Ohio. Ryan Stahl has been named to drive by trainer Jim Arledge Jr. With 7 career victories, a lifetime mark of 1:52.4 and earnings of $106,826, the favored gelding scores from the rail in his 16th career start. He faces Larry’s Dream, Noble Trick, Friskies Cheapsuit, Duke Uh Brava and Man He Can Scoot.
Race 9 is the final Ohio Sires Stake race of the evening, featuring the $18,000 second division for three year-old colt and gelding trotters. Rock N Jesse (Jailhouse Jesse-Just Plain Denise-Overcomer) ships in for trainer Ron Burke and will start as the 2-1 morning line favorite. Burke has named Tony Hall to drive for owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and Howard Taylor of Pennsylvania, and Slaughter Racing Stable of Kentucky. This gelding has four career victories and earnings of $86,919. Rock N Jesse starts from post five in a talented field of rivals consisting of Captain Jesse, Cody Coy, We Belong Together, Its Jesse Time, Jesse’s Touch, Rose Run Nolan and Al Brown.
Saturday’s 1st race post time is 7:00 p.m.
August 16, 2012
Sires Stake Sophomore Fillies Take the Stage Friday
Sophomore filly trotters will lead off Friday’s show in a $17,100 Ohio Sires Stakes division. Rose Run Nellie (Trainforthefuture-Lilyad-Armbro Iliad) is the morning-line favorite in the opener for owner Scott Cox Stable of Streetsboro, Ohio. Scott Cox is also the filly’s trainer and driver. Rose Run Nellie makes her 13th start of 2012. She has 9 career victories and earnings of nearly $50,000. Rose Run Nellie will start from post three. Also entered in the first division are Bosco’s Angel, Yankee’s Victory, Cinca De Miya, Jessica Rayne and Tesla.
Race 3 will be the $17,200 first division for three-year old Ohio-bred filly pacers. Trainer Jim Arledge Jr. will start Standing Danette, a Stand Forever filly, as the 2-1 morning-line favorite. Standing Danette starts from post one with Dan Noble scheduled to drive for owner Sharon Edelman of Gahanna, Ohio. Standing Danette’s five rivals will be Friskie Beauty, Buckeye Beauty, Wind River Cat, Let’sgoalltheway and Forever Lover.
Sophomore filly trotters return to the stage to compete in Race 5 for the $17,100 second division of the Ohio Sire Stakes. The Jailhouse Jesse filly, Wardon’s Daughter, is the 2-1 morning-line favorite for owners Ryan Stahl and Richard Smith, both of Republic, Ohio. Stahl also drives Warden’s Daughter for trainer Nichole Gagnon. With 6 career victories, a lifetime mark of 1:57.4 and earnings of $66,121, the favored filly scores from the rail in her 18th career start. She faces Lady At Bat, Rose Run Natassia, Annie’s Master, Easter Rosetta, Sandy’s Star and TT’s Tater Chip.
Race 8 is the final Ohio Sires Stake race of the evening, featuring the $17,200 second division for three year-old filly pacers. Special Lady D, by Stand Forever, ships in for trainer Brian Brown. Brown has named Ryan Stahl to drive for owner William Robinson of Findlay, Ohio. This filly has three straight victories and career winnings of nearly $100,000. Special Lady D starts from post four in a talented field of rivals consisting of B Mobile, Kannon’s Flash, Little Friskie, Kates Beer Bunny, Royalness and Feelin Rosie.
Friday’s 1st race post time is 7:00 p.m.
August 7, 2012
NEW LEADER HAS EMERGED IN NORTHFIELD’S TIGHT TRAINER STANDING
The 2012 race for Northfield Park’s leading trainer has been tight from the start, with Kevin Ehrhardt leading most of the year. However Harla “Renae” Loney has recently emerged at the top of the list. Loney has posted 44 victories over Northfield Park’s Flying Turns in 2012. Don Pfister (41), Larry Clabaugh (40), Kevin Ehrhardt (40) and Darrell Rideout (36) complete the top five.
Harla Renae Loney is originally from Martin, Kentucky. She and her husband Brian recently purchased a home to relocate in Northfield, Ohio. They have three children: 12 year-old son Gannun, 7 year-old son Payton and 3 year-old daughter Polly.
Loney, 36, said horses are in her blood: “My grandpa and dad both had horses and I guess I was just brought up in it.” However, before becoming a trainer in 2002, Loney had started another career. Renae is a graduate of Morehead State University, competing in their equestrian program, and became a teacher. She taught elementary school in Floyd County, Kentucky for two years before pursuing her passion in horse racing.
Loney currently trains a stable of 19 horses. She has garnered 186 career victories and purse earnings of $352,696. Her favorite horse was a pacing gelding she trained named Bomb Squad.
Loney emphasized that she loves horses and loves working with them. Her favorite part of the sport, she said, is “getting to the winner’s circle.”
July 24, 2012
Northfield Park to Host Summit County Fair Races
This Saturday (July 28) Northfield Park will host the 2012 Summit County Fair Stakes. Buckeye-bred youngsters will compete for total purses estimated at $100,000. In addition to the live racing action, Northfield will open for full-card simulcasting beginning at 12 noon. Over 40 tracks including Saratoga’s world-class thoroughbred meet, are on tap.
Summit County Fair Day not only offers great racing action, but also holds activities for the entire family. Lady Luck’s clubhouse features a $14.99 buffet, while the trackside apron will be the place to relax for outdoor activities. Food trucks will return as Seti’s Polish Boys and The Nosh Box offer up their tempting food creations. So Yummy will be here, too, serving their cool and icy summertime treats. Enjoy beer specials and live music by “Unknown Reason” on the outdoor Trackside patio from 5-9 pm. Also, kids can check out the children’s activity area from 5 to 7 pm.
Summit County Fair Day is not only fun, but it is a real bargain, too. Guests can enjoy free carrel seating all day long. Plus free admission and free parking! Post Time 7 pm.
July 21, 2012
Classic Rock Nroll Upsets Battle of Lake Field
Dan Noble piloted Classic Rock Nroll ($25.40) to victory in the 27th Annual $111,500 Battle of Lake Erie at Northfield Park upsetting two time champion Foiled Again. Classic Rock Nroll pushed Foiled Again before releasing him to a quarter of 26.4. After taking the lead, Foiled Again was challenged by Aracache Hanover to a half in 55 and three-quarters in 1:22.3. Noble popped Classic Rock Nroll into the passing lane and passed Foiled Again by half a length, stopping the timer in 1:50.3.
“That was the plan from the start,” said Noble, “His (Classic Rock Nroll’s) trainer told me to push them to the quarter and he would have a big kick coming home.”
The win pushes Classic Rock N Roll’s earnings just shy of $500,000. Classic Rock Nroll is owned by Frank Bellino of Bronxville, NY and trained by Tony O’Sullivan and tonight’s winning time of 1:50.3 represents a lifetime mark for the five year-old.
The final order of finish after Classic Rock Nroll was Foiled Again, Aracache Hanover, Flipper J, Trick Man, Valentino and Something For Doc.
July 21, 2012
Freshman Colts Highlight Northfield’s Battle of Lake Erie Undercard
On Saturday, July 21 Northfield Park hosted four divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes racing action as highlights to the evening’s Battle of Lake Erie program. Two-year-old colt trotters and pacers each competed in two divisions.
On the trotting side, Neely Spring went gate to wire to win the $16,300 first division. The race was Neely Spring’s second victory in three lifetime starts. The colt was victorious at the Hilliard fair on July 14. Dan Noble piloted the colt for owner Fred Polk and Trainer Eric Nesselroad. Noble steered Neely Spring through fractional times of 30.2, 1:03, 134 and 2:04. The clocking represents a lifetime mark for the Neely Dunn colt. Finishing behind Neely spring was Master Miracle, Flashy Cash, Chet N Spanky and Sundaysacoming. Neely Spring returned $2.80 for the win.
Heza Rube took the $16,300 second division for two-year old colt and gelding Ohio-breds for Northfield Park Wall of Fame trainer Marty Wollam. The Master Lavec gelding started from post five and sustained a successful bid to easily overhaul Masterdream Chaser. Kurt Sugg drove for owner Bob Troyer. It was his second career start and the youngster remains undefeated, winning his first race on July 4 at Scioto Downs. Third behind Masterdream Chaser was Clipper Power followed by Final Breath, Sammy Sammy Sammy and Trottin On Over. Heza Rube paid $4.00 to win.
Feelin Lika Winner was impressive winning the $17,200 first pacing division. Kayne Kauffman drove the gelding for trainer Scot Mogan and owners Diamond Chip Stable, AWS Stable, C. Guiler and S. Mogan. The son of Feelin Friskie sat third, watching rivals Friskie By Design and Phantom duel through opening fractions of 27.2 and 56.3. Kauffman brushed the Feelin Lika Winner at the half, took the lead and never looked back. Feelin Lika Winner tripped the three-quarters in 1:27.1 and finishedthe mile in 1:56.3. This was first victory in two starts. Finishing in succession after the winner were Outdoor Fever, Phantom Flasher, Chief Friskie, Friskie By Design and Back Mount. Feelin Lika Winner returned $2.60 to win.
The final Ohio Sires Stake race of the evening was the $17,200 second division for two year-old colt and gelding pacers. That Friske Feelin was the benefactor of soft fractions to remain undefeated in three races. Driver Kyle Ater had That Friske Feelin, a son of Friske Feelin, in front through virtually the entire mile. They set fractions of 29.1, 1:00, 1:29.3 and 1:57.4. Jim Arledge Jr trains this gelding for owners Howard Taylor, Edwin Gold and Richard Lombardo. Completing the event was My Last Chance, Forever Kissed, Dusto, Sectionline Road and River Valley Pearl. Friske Feelin paid $2.20 to win as the 1-9 favorite.
July 18, 2012
Foiled Again Favored to win Saturday’s Battle of Lake Erie
Foiled Again drew post 5 and has been named the 2-1 morning-line favorite in Saturday’s (July 21) $111,500 Battle of Lake Erie by Northfield Park Executive VP/Director of Racing Dave Bianconi. Saturday’s eleventh race will reveal if Foiled Again is successful in becoming the first horse in Northfield Park history to win the Battle of Lake Erie three times.
The eight-year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice.
Age does not seem to be slowing Foiled Again. He has paced his last four races in under 1:50. Foiled Again is trained by Ronald Burke and has garnered 62 career victories and earned $3,892,989. Those career earnings rank him as the 4th richest pacer in history.
The 2012 Battle of Lake Erie field:
Horse Driver Trainer M/L
1-Flipper J TBA Kevin McDermott 8-1
2-Trick Man Ray Paver Ray Paver 20-1
3-Classic Rock Nroll Dan Noble Tony O’ Sullivan 9-2
4-Valentino Pat Berry Nicholas Surick 10-1
5-Foiled Again Yannick Gingras Ron Burke 2-1
6-Aracache Hanover Aaron Merriman Gregg McNair 7-2
7-Something For Doc Ryan Stahl Ron Burke 12-1
Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip, Maltese Artist and Foiled Again.
An impressive undercard featuring two $17,200 divisions of Ohio Sires Stakes two year-old colt pacers and two $16,300 divisions of two-year old colt trotters will support this year’s Battle of Lake Erie program.
Superfecta wagering has been added to Saturday’s eleventh race as well as a $10,000 guaranteed Pick-4 pool. Saturday’s Pick-4 will conclude with the Battle of Lake Erie. Post time is 7:00 p.m.
July 17, 2012
FOILED AGAIN EXPECTED TO HIGHLIGHT BATTLE OF LAKE ERIE
Foiled Again is expected to enter this Saturday’s (July 21) Battle of Lake Erie and will try to become the first horse in Northfield Park history to win the event three times. The eight-year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice.
Age does not seem to be slowing Foiled Again. He has paced all of his last four races under 1:50. Foiled Again is trained by Ronald Burke and has so far garnered 62 career victories and earned $3,892,989.
Other top Battle of Lake Erie nominees include:
Horse Owner(s) Trainer
Aracache Hanover William Switala and James Martin R Gregg McNair
Classic Rock Nroll Frank Bellino Tony O’Sullivan
Clear Vision Burke Racing Stbl, Weaver Bruscemi, Ron Burke
Eighteen Dr. Ian Moore, RG McGroup, etc. Dr. Ian Moore
Flipper J Francis Azur Kevin McDermott
Razzle Dazzle Ira Kristel Richard Silverman
Something For Doc Country Club Acres, William Robinson Brian Brown
Stonebridge Tonic Leonard Gamble and R. Gregg McNair Mark Ford
Trick Man Carolyn Brechler, Douglas Brechler Ray Paver
Valentino KDM Stables Nicholas Surick
Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip, Maltese Artist and Foiled Again.
An impressive undercard featuring Ohio Sires Stakes for two year-old colt trotters and pacers will support this year’s Battle of Lake Erie.
In addition, Battle night will also offer guests a sumptuous dinner buffet in Lady Luck’s clubhouse. The special Battle of Lake Erie Buffet is just $14.99 and includes admission and a program for each guest. Guests who want to be down close to all of the racing action can stop by the grandstand apron to sample two of northeast Ohio’s most popular food trucks: Seti’s Polish Boys (as seen on the Food network’s “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”) and Sweet The Mobile Cupcakery and all of their delicious dessert treats.
Post time is 7:00 p.m.
July 10, 2012
BACK TO THE TRACK NIGHT SET FOR JULY 14
“Back to the Track" returns to Northfield Park Saturday (July 14). Northfield Park and the United States Trotting Association have joined forces once again to present this annual promotion of racing.
The United States Trotting Association has coordinated "Back to the Track" with racetracks across the United States to make it a national event. “Back to the Track” is designed to promote harness racing and encourage occasional or former race fans to come “back to the track” for an exciting night of entertainment.
“Back to the Track” at Northfield Park will provide patrons with free parking and admission. Guests can also enjoy dollar programs, hot dogs, soft drinks, snacks, $3.00 beer specials and a chance to win Northfield Park’s Back to the Track Ultimate Prize Package: Dinner for 4 in Lady Luck’s Clubhouse, free programs, parking and admission, four Northfield Park fleece jackets, a race sponsorship with a commemorative Winner’s Circle photo, and $2.00 win tickets on every horse in every live race!
“Back to the Track” Saturday night has a regular 1st race post time of 7:00 p.m.
July 3, 2012
Freshman Fillies On Display in the Ohio Sires Stakes
On Tuesday, July 3 Northfield Park hosted four divisions of Ohio Sires Stake racing action as part of the Tuesday 12-race program. Two-year-old filly trotters and pacers competed in two divisions.
The trotters took to the stage first and Diplomats Mistress went virtually gate to wire to win the $16,900 first division. The race was Diplomats Mistress’ second start and she remains undefeated. The filly was victorious at Circleville on June 17. David Myers piloted the filly for owner/trainer Mike Sowers of Mc Arthur, Ohio. Myers steered Diplomats Mistress through fractional times of 30.2, 1:03, 133.3 and 2:04.4. The clocking represents a lifetime mark for the Master Lavec filly and the Carry The Message mare Diplomatic Pouch. Finishing behind Diplomats Mistress was Look At Count, Trainer Dunn, MJ’s Victory Wish and Mamie’snightmare. Contessa Leigh was scratched. Diplomats Mistress returned $7.00 for the win.
Royal Fricassee took the $16,900 second division for two-year old filly Ohio-breds for local trainer Ray Crawford. The Royal Strength filly from the Lucky Almahurst mare Fricassee started from post six and sustained successful first-over bid to overhaul Whizzy Izzy in the final quarter. Robin Miller drove for owners S. Kochilla, J. Crawford, R Crawford and R Hann. It was the first career start for Royal Fricassee and she trotted in 2:03.4. Completing the race was Whizzy Izzy, Pinehille Lady, Lindas Diamond Lil, Lady’s Starlett and Sheza Lavec. Royal Fricassee paid $4.80 to win.
The pacers were up next and Igottafeelinfran was as impressive as they come winning the $18,500 first division. Dan Noble drove the filly for trainer Jim Dailey and owners Jerry Zossell, Kathy Ratcliff and Kimberly Dailey. The daughter of Feelin Friskie from the Expensive Scooter mare Fran Anna was used hard in the first quarter making the lead in 28.2. She proceeded to lead trough fractions of 57.2, 1:25.4 and a final time of 1:55.2 and held off a hard charging Cating Around, who put in a formidable bid in the third quarter. The mile was Igottafeelinfran’s first race, although showing two successful qualifiers at Scioto Downs. Finishing in succession after the winner was Cating Around, Pink Camo, One Naughty Lady, Hawk’s Cry Believe, Two Friskie, Happy N Memphis, Cheat Sheet and Friskie Town. Igottafeelinfran returned $6.20 to win.
The final Ohio Sires Stake race of the evening was the $18,500 second division for two year-old filly pacers and it was raced under different conditions as a thunderstorm with heavy rains downgraded the track to sloppy. Always D Lady was the benefactor of a duel to capture the sires stake in 2:00.1. Driver Chris Page had Always D Lady (Stand Forever-Grey Lady D-Cam’s Magic Trick) perfectly placed in the garden spot behind Forever La Nigh and CG’s Serious. When clearance surfaced, Page tipped the filly from the pocket and she impressively passed and held off her rivals to capture the victory. Always D Lady is trained by Brian Brown for owners County Club Acres, Daniel Wozniak and AWS Stables. Following Always D Lady were Norma Jean, Sassy Two Sox, Ideal Summer, Forever La Nigh, Stylish Dapper, CG’s Serious and Lovintouchinfeelin. Always D Lady paid $7.80 to win.
July 2, 2012
Northfield Park to Host Ohio Sires Stake Freshman Fillies on July 3
On Tuesday, July 3 Northfield Park offers guests the opportunity to start their holiday off right with stakes racing action on the track and concession specials trackside. Fans will see four divisions of Ohio Sires Stake racing action as part of Tuesday’s 12-race program.
Freshman filly trotters will start Tuesday’s show in Race 1 for the $16,900 first division. Contessa Leigh (Full Count-Howl-Overcomer) is the morning-line favorite for owners G&B Racing and Patricia Wollam. Northfield Park Wall of Fame inductee Marty Wollam is the filly’s trainer and driver. Contessa Leigh makes her first lifetime start, but shows two qualifying efforts at The Meadows, the fastest being timed in 2:00.4. Contessa Leigh will start from post one. Completing the first division will be Diplomats Mistress, Trainer Dunn, MJ’s Victory Wish, Mamie’snightmare and Look At Count.
Race 3 will be the $16,900 second division for two-year old filly Ohio-bred trotters. Local trainer Ray Crawford will start, Royal Fricassee (Royal Strength-Fricassee-Lucky Almahurst) as the luke warm morning-line favorite. Royal Fricassee starts from post six and faces five other rivals, all of which are making their first lifetime starts. Robin Miller is scheduled to drive for owners S. Kochilla, J. Crawford, R Crawford and R Hann. Lady’s Starlett, Whizzy Izzy, Lindas Diamond Lil, Pinehill Lady and Sheza Lavec complete the line-up.
Freshman filly pacers will take to stage in Race 7 in the $18,500 first division Ohio Sire Stakes. Cating Around (Feelin Friskie-Little Star-Cam’s Magic Trick) is the morning-line favorite for owners Jennifer Brown, Gary Cook and Timothy Lane. Chris Page has been named to drive by trainer Brian Brown. Cating Around has two qualifying lines from Scioto Downs, both sub two-minute miles with last quarters in 27 seconds. Cating around starts from post-six in a field that consists of Two Friskie, One Naughty Lady, Igottafeelinfran, Happy N Memphis, Pink Camo, Hawk’s Cry Believe, Friskie Town and Cheat Sheet.
Race 9 will host the final Ohio Sires Stake race of the evening with the $18,500 second division for two year-old filly pacers. CG’s Serious (Pine Valley-CG Fire-Cambest) ships in from Chicago with trainer/driver John Roberts. This filly has raced one time, finishing second beaten by a head, at Chicago’s Balmoral Park. CG’s Serious starts from post-3 in a talented field of eight rivals consisting of Lovintouchinfeelin, Sassy Two Sox, Forever La Nigh, Always D Lady, Stylish Dapper, Ideal Summer and Norma Jean.
For delicious holiday food fare, enjoy the concession specials offered trackside. Guests can choose among a barbecued pork sandwich, super dog or a Guinness Brat. Each $4 selection comes with a complimentary 20 oz. Pepsi. Or try one of our Miller or Labatt beer specials for $3. Post time is 7:00 p.m.
June 26, 2012
Northfield Park Racing Action Heats Up in July
BATTLE OF LAKE ERIE:
Saturday, July 21, 2012 Northfield Park will host the 27th annual $100,000 Battle of Lake Erie. Since its inception in 1986, the Battle of Lake Erie has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip, Maltese Artist and Foiled Again.
This year, Foiled Again could become the first horse in Northfield Park history to win the Battle of Lake Erie three times. The eight-year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won the event in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice.
Currently twenty horses have sustained to the 2012 Battle of Lake Erie and boast combined earnings of more than $12,500,000, having won almost 300 races. Two millionaires, Aracache Hanover and Foiled Again, are among the eligibles.
In addition, Battle night will also offer guests a spectacular dinner buffet in Lady Luck’s clubhouse. The special Battle of Lake Erie Buffet will be 2 for $29.99 and include admission and a program for each guest. Guests who want to be down close to all of the racing action can stop by the outdoor apron to sample three of northeast Ohio’s most popular food trucks. Seti’s Polish Boys (as seen on the Food network’s “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”) and StrEat Mobile Bistro (winner of the 2012 Fan Favorite at the Northfield Park Kentucky Derby Day Food Truck Festival) will be serving up their special fare. And for dessert don’t miss out on Sweet The Mobile Cupcakery and all of their delicious sweets.
OHIO SIRES STAKES:
July also features two nights of Ohio Sires Stakes racing action over Northfield’s Flying Turns. On Tuesday, July 3, Ohio sired two year-old filly pacers and trotters will be the main attraction on the holiday race card. To start your holiday off right, enjoy the concession specials offered trackside. Guests can choose among a barbecued pork sandwich, Super Dog or a Guinness Brat with a Pepsi for $4. Or try one of our Miller or Labatt beer specials for $3.
The month’s second Ohio Sires Stakes, for two year-old colt trotters and pacers, will be contested on the Battle of Lake Erie undercard.
SUMMIT COUNTY FAIR:
On Saturday, July 28 Northfield Park hosts the 2012 Summit County Fair Stakes. Buckeye-bred youngsters will compete for total purses estimated at $100,000. In addition to the live racing action, Northfield will open for full-card simulcasting beginning at 12 noon. Over 40 tracks including Saratoga’s world-class thoroughbred meet, are on tap.
Fair Day offers plenty of activities for the whole family. Lady Luck’s clubhouse features a special 2 for $29.99 buffet, while the trackside apron will be the place to relax for the outdoor activities. The food trucks return as Seti’s Polish Boys and StrEat Mobile Bistro are joined by the Nosh Box in offering up their tempting food creations. So Yummy will be here, too, serving their cool and icy summertime treats. Enjoy beer specials and live music at the outdoor Trackside patio. Nearby kids can enjoy the children’s activity area from 5 to 7 pm.
Summit County Fair Day is also a real bargain: fans receive free admission and parking, free carrel seating and $1 live programs.
June 19, 2012
Ehrhardt Leads Trainer Race; Stahl Leads Drivers
Kevin Ehrhardt continues to maintain a slim lead in the 2012 Trainer Standings. A pair of wins on Saturday (June 16) increased Ehrhardt’s tally to 34 victories this year. Completing the top 5 conditioners are Don Pfister (30), Darrell Rideout (27), Calvin Hollar (26) and Larry Clabaugh (26).
The 46-year-old Ehrhardt is a resident of Stow. If he maintains his lead through December 2012, it would be the first training title to his credit. In 2011, Ehrhardt had the highest UTRS (Universal Trainer Rating System) of the Northfield trainers, but he has never been the leading trainer with the most victories.
Ehrhardt has been training horses since 1994 and has earned 926 training successes and purses of nearly $3,000,000. His current stable has ten horses. He credits the best horse he has ever trained as being Coastal Wind.
Kevin has been married for 21 years to his wife, Carla Ehrhardt, who works as the Senior Administrative Assistant to the Vice-President of King’s Medical Group in Hudson, Ohio. Kevin and Carla have two sons, Zack and Ryan. Zack is a sophomore at Walsh University on a baseball scholarship and Ryan is a junior at Stow-Munroe Falls High School.
Ehrhardt has set a goal to earn his first training title this year. “I have never really had enough horses to produce the starts to be able to have the most wins,” commented Ehrhardt. “I am in a spot now that I have a real shot. It is absolutely my goal to be the leading trainer. I have terrific owners.”
Ryan Stahl has widened his lead in the 2012 Driver Standings. He has 184 victories over Northfield’s Flying Turns so far this year. Aaron Merriman (124), Tyler Smith (118), Kurt Sugg (92) and Dan Noble (81) round out the top-five reinsman.
The 34-year-old Stahl is a native of Republic, Ohio and is in search of his first career driving title. Stahl finished second in the 2011 Northfield Driving Standings and was the runner-up three times at Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio.
Ryan’s 2012 tally ranks him 20th nationally. Stahl began driving in 1994 and has since won 2,871 races and purses approaching $9,000,000.
June 4, 2012
Triple Crown Fever at Northfield Park
This Saturday at Northfield Park you can watch and wager on the 144th running of the Belmont Stakes. Does Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I’ll Have Another have what it takes to become the 12th winner of Thoroughbred Racing’s Triple Crown?
Doors open early at 10:30 am on Belmont Day with the first race on the Belmont undercard scheduled for 11:35 am. Advance wagering on the Belmont will be available, and the simulcast signals from over 40 other tracks will be offered for wagering.
The fun all starts at 12 noon when the Northfield Park Food Truck Festival opens for business on the outside apron. Food Truck participants include Fired Up Tacos, The Nosh Box, So Yummy! and Seti’s Polish Boys. While enjoying the delicious gourmet offerings, be sure to enjoy ice-cold Pepsi, Labatt and Miller products and listen to the musical entertainment of Unknown Reason. The four-man band will appear live on the outdoor apron from 2-6 pm. Stop by the WMJI booth from 2 to 4 pm and spin the Majic Prize Wheels for a chance at some great prizes. WMJI morning show member Chip Kullik will be on hand to greet fans and give out his selections for the Belmont.
Are you looking for that special Triple Crown souvenir? There will be a limited number of I’ll Have Another hats and t-shirts as well as Belmont Stakes glasses available for purchase. Northfield will be offering a special Long Island Iced Tea in souvenir Belmont Stakes glasses while supplies last.
Still more special events are on tap for the third leg of the Triple Crown. Prize giveaways will be held throughout Belmont Day. Simply fill out your entry blank that you will receive when you enter, and deposit it in the contest bins located throughout the track. Names will be drawn randomly throughout the day for cash, gift cards, Belmont Stakes merchandise, Cleveland sporting tickets, and much more.
And be sure to visit the ESPN Cleveland WKNR booth from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm and hang out with Kenny Roda and the WKNR Street Team. Try your luck at the ESPN Plinko game where you could win tokens for the debut of the ESPN Cleveland slot machine. The slot machine payouts translate into great prizes like Cleveland sporting tickets, ESPN merchandise, gift certificates and much more! Plus one lucky winner will go home with a brand new IPOD.
FREE admission and FREE parking on Belmont Day at Northfield Park.
BIO LINK HAS THREE STRAIGHT WINS UNDER HER BELT
AND IS LOOKING FOR THE FOURTH
When the eight-year-old pacing mare Bio Link walked into David Grisenthwaite’s barn just seven starts ago, he never thought she would become the fastest horse he has ever trained. “She was kind of a joke at first,” said Grisenthwaite. “We were pleasantly surprised when she starting winning for us.”
Bio Link has scored three wins in a row for her new trainer, breaking her lifetime mark and swiftly moving up the condition ladder in the process.
Grisenthwaite would love to figure out what the reason for Bio Link’s improvement is, but for now he thinks it was the small changes. “I changed her hopples a little bit and moved her to Billy Larimer for blacksmithing. You sure can’t do well without a good blacksmith.” Grisenthwaite further explained: “Ryan Stahl and Wyatt Irvine have been driving her for me, and when these guys get confidence in your horse they are as good as it gets. She would not be racing the way she is now without them.” “I don’t know how long she can keep doing what she is doing,” offered Grisenthwaite. “She is eight-years old and a wonderful horse to work around. In fact, my daughter, Brittany Miller, does everything for her except training miles.”
Her 1:54.1 win on May 11, which represents Bio Link’s lifetime mark, prompted Grisenthwaite to move her from $3,000 claimers to the top conditioned races offered at Northfield Park. “It just looked like she could deal with them,” commented Grisenthwaite, “So after that step up, I asked Ryan how the new competition was and he replied, “She won, didn’t she?”
Bio Link, a pacing mare by Village Jiffy from the Run The Table mare Quicklink, has five wins in 2012, 38 career wins and earnings of $129,579. Brian Lloyd of Garfield Heights, Ohio owns Bio Link.
“She has been turned out a lot this week and is up to her belly in grass just running, playing and having fun,” stated Grisenthwaite.
Bio Link is entered to race on Friday (June 1) and drew post seven in Northfield Park’s eleventh race. When asked about her chances, Grisenthwaite said, “I don’t want to jinx her.”
For Immediate Release firstname.lastname@example.org
May 22, 2012
Stiletto is Looking to be a Millionaire
Northfield Park’s first race on May 15, 2012 marked the 46th and most recent win of the twelve-year-old trotter Stiletto. It also bumped his career earnings to $999,173. Stiletto is scheduled to compete in his next race on May 25 at The Meadows.
Stiletto looked promising right from the start. His racing career began in June 2003 and he won all of his first three races in sub-two-minute miles at Pocono Downs. His richest win was at Rideau Carleton Raceway in the 2006 edition of the $165,150 Frank Ryan Trot. Also in 2006, Stiletto was the runner-up to Peaceful Way in the $789,750 Maple Leaf Trot at Mohawk Racetrack. Mohawk is also where Stiletto took his 1:53.1 lifetime best.
Stiletto is a son Mr Vic from the Speedy Crown mare Armbro Natural and has been owned by Trudy Hite and trained by Wayne Hite since October 2010. Throughout his racing career, driving greats such as Herve Filion, Ron Pierce, Jack Moiseyev, Luc Ouellette, Brian Sears, Mike Lachance, Richard Zeron and Paul MacDonell have piloted the talented trotter.
Stiletto has faced some of the best that the sport has had to offer an impressive 222 times. In addition to his 46 victories, he has 29 second- place finishes and 19 third-place efforts.
May 14, 2012
NORTHFIELD PARK: HOME OF WINNERS ON DERBY DAY
The festive crowd on Kentucky Derby Day not only bet big, but it also won big. While wagering $677,141 on the day (up 16.5% over last year’s Derby), fans at Northfield cashed wagering tickets worth $780,441, a healthy 15.3% return on their investments.
The most notable winners were two Northeast Ohioans, one from Lyndhurst and one from Shaker Heights, who each held a $1.00 Kentucky Derby superfecta ticket that paid $48,046.40.
Of Ohio’s eight venues which simulcast the Derby, only one other, Northfield Park’s Cedar Downs OTB facility in Sandusky, hosted patrons who made a profit. Thanks to multiple successful trifecta wagers on the Derby race, Cedar fans had a net positive return of $37,022 off total wagering of $129,628.
William Henry of Strongsville was also a lucky winner, pocketing $5,000 in Northfield Park’s Kentucky Derby Race of the Day promotion. Henry selected a sealed envelope that contained the name of eventual Derby winner I’ll Have Another and then, along with 19 other entrants who also randomly drew Derby starters, waited out the finish. All 20 finalists shared in the Run for the Roses fun, with second, third and fourth place finishers winning $200, $100 and $50, respectively. All other contestants were awarded $25 each.
Now It’s On To The Preakness…
This Saturday, May 19, marks the 137th running of the Preakness Stakes live from Pimlico Racecourse.
Doors open extra early at 9:45 am on Preakness Day, and the action gets going soon after as first post at Pimlico is set for 10:45 am. Early bird wagering on the Preakness will be available. There will be over 40 other tracks from the U.S., Canada and Australia looking for your simulcast wagering dollars.
If you are arriving early, join us for a special morning snack of two donuts and a coffee for $1.00 in the Racebook from 9:45 to 11:30 am. Don’t miss out on reserving a private seating carrel and television for your viewing pleasure. Carrel seats are currently on sale at the grandstand center program stand on the ground floor.
Grab a bite to eat at Northfield Park’s food station near the Trackside Lounge. Specials include pulled pork sandwiches, Italian sausage sandwiches with peppers and onions, and ham or turkey and Swiss subs, all served with chips for $4. We also will offer a cabbage and noodles dish for $2. The food station is open from 11:30 am until 6:30 pm.
Other menu options will be available at the ground floor main concession stand and The Grille in the grandstand mezzanine. In addition, quench your thirst with $3 Labatt and Miller Lite specials and soda and water specials for $2 located throughout the facility.
Be sure to try your luck on the FREE Preakness Stakes Handicapping Challenge. All guests 18 and over will receive one entry (from 9:45 am until 5:45 pm) for their shot at selecting the top four finishers in the Preakness Stakes. The guest who selects the most correct finishers (based on points) wins $1,000 cash. Prizes for second, third and fourth place are $300, $200 and $100, respectively.
Northfield also has a number of prize drawings planned for Preakness Day. The giveaways will take place all afternoon. Simply fill out the entry blank that you receive when you enter and deposit it in one of the contest bins located throughout the track. Names will be drawn randomly throughout the day for cash vouchers, merchandise, Cleveland sporting tickets, and more.
Stop by the WKRK 92.3 The Fan booth from 1 to 4 pm and spin and win for your chance at Cleveland sporting tickets, special WKRK merchandise and more! Afternoon hosts Adam “The Bull” and Dustin Fox will be on hand from 2 to 4 pm to talk with fans and give out their selections for the Preakness Stakes.
FREE admission and FREE parking on Preakness Day at Northfield Park.
May 8, 2012
Twenty Remain Staked to this Year’s Battle of Lake Erie
The $100,000 (est.) Battle Of Lake Erie is set for Saturday, July 21. Since its inception in 1986, it has drawn the best veteran pacers the sport has to offer. Past Battle Champions include racing greats Falcon Seelster, Quite A Sensation, Jaguar Spur, Dorunrun Bluegrass, Cambest, Riyadh, Gallo Blue Chip, Maltese Artist and Foiled Again.
Foiled Again could become the first horse in Northfield Park history to win the Battle of Lake Erie three times. The eight-year-old son of Dragon Again (2000 Battle Champion) won the event in 2009 and 2011, joining Jaguar Spur (winner in 1988-89), Peruvian Hanover (winner in 2002-03) and Maltese Artist (winner in 2005 and 2007) as the only four horses to win the Battle of Lake Erie twice.
The twenty horses sustained to the 2012 Battle of Lake Erie have combined earnings of more than $12,500,000, winning 290 races. Two millionaires, Aracache Hanover and Foiled Again, are among the eligibles.
Complete list of horses nominated to the 2012 Battle of Lake Erie:
Horse Owner(s) Trainer
Aracache Hanover William Switala and James Martin R Gregg McNair
Betterthancheddar Steve Calhoun and West Wins Stable Casie Coleman
Classic Rock Nroll Frank Bellino Tony O’Sullivan
Clear Vision Burk Racing Stbl, Weaver Bruscemi, etc. Ron Burke
Dana’s Sharp Smart Stanley Kaufman Kevin Hough
Eighteen Dr. Ian Moore, RG McGroup, etc. Dr. Ian Moore
Flipper J Francis Azur Kevin McDermott
Foiled Again Burke Racing Stbl, Weaver Bruscemi, etc. Ron Burke
Hugadragon Burke Racing Stable Ron Burke
Nathan Feelsgood Patricia Mulder and Gerald Mulder Mark Ford
Picture Me Robert Key Walter Carroll
Powerful Mist Legacy Racing, Niel Gargiulo, etc. Melvin Givens
Prodigal Seelster Larry Menary, Denis Breton, etc. David Menary
Razzle Dazzle Ira Kristel Richard Silverman
Shark’s Legacy Joseph Smith Thomas Fanning
Something For Doc Country Club Acres, William Robinson, etc. Brian Brown
Stonebridge Tonic Leonard Gamble and R Gregg McNair Mark Ford
Trick Man Carolyn Brechler, Douglas Brechler, etc. Ray Paver
Valentino KDM Stables Nicholas Surick
Warning Zone VIP Internet Stable Boyd Hudson Jr.
May 1, 2012
One Lucky Fan to Win $5,000 on Kentucky Derby Day
Northfield Park will once again offer all the Triple Crown races kicking off with the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 5.
Doors open extra early at 9:30 am on Kentucky Derby Day and the action gets going right away as first post at Churchill Downs is set for 10:30 am. Advance wagering on the Derby will be available. Plus, there will be over 40 other tracks from all over the world looking for your wagering dollar.
Hungry? Then check out the Northfield Park Food Truck Festival on the outside apron. Six of Cleveland’s top food trucks will be selling their specialties from 12 noon until 6 pm. Food Truck participants include StrEat Mobile Bistro (American style dishes), Zydeco Bistro (Gourmet Creole and Cajun Cuisine), Umami Moto (Asian Infused), Seti’s Polish Boys (As seen on the Food Networks “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”), JiBARO Gourmet (Caribbean Cuisine) and Motormouth Food Truck (Globally Inspired Street Food). While enjoying the delicious gourmet offerings, listen to the music of Unknown Reason live on the outdoor apron from 1-5 pm and be sure to stop by the WGAR booth and scan your loyal listener card for a chance at some great prizes.
If you are arriving early join us for a special morning snack of 2 donuts and a coffee for $1.00 in the Racebook, plus don’t miss out on a perennial Kentucky Derby favorite the mint julep served in a souvenir Derby glass.
Northfield has a number of special events planned for the Run for the Roses. Prize giveaways will be held throughout Derby Day. Simply fill out your entry blank that you will receive when you enter, and deposit it in the contest bins located throughout the track. Names will be drawn randomly throughout the day for Kentucky Derby merchandise, Cleveland sporting tickets, and much more. Names will also be drawn to represent each of the twenty horses in the Kentucky Derby. If your horse wins the Kentucky Derby then you win the top prize of $5,000 cash! If your horse doesn’t win, don’t worry, because the nineteen runners-up each win a prize!
Stop by the ESPN Cleveland WKNR booth from 3:00 pm until 7:00 pm and take your chance at the Plinko game where you could win an HD Flat Screen Television or other great prizes like Cleveland sporting tickets, ESPN merchandise, gift certificates and much more!
FREE admission and FREE parking on Kentucky Derby Day at Northfield Park.
April 28, 2012
Podges Lady Wins the Courageous Lady
Sawgrass Farms’ Podges Lady made the last call a winning one as she out sprinted Destiny’s Chance to the finish line in the $86,000 Courageous Lady pace at Northfield Park Saturday night. Destiny’s Chance led throughout posting soft fractions of 27.4, 57.1 and 1:25.3. Podges Lady had a perfect trip tracking the leader, pulled into the passing lane and won by a neck.
The three-year-old daughter of The Panderosa out of the Cam’s Card Shark mare Four Starzzzz Hope made her seasonal debut a winning one in 1:54:2. Driven by Ryan Stahl she increased her lifetime bankroll to over $257,000. “Being from Ohio, I've won several Ohio Sires Stakes Finals, but this win ranks right up there with the best of them, " commented Stahl. "When we came to the passing lane she really responded."
Podges Lady paid $12.80, $4.40 and 3.20 to win, Destiny’s Chance finished second and paid $2.20, 2.10 and Princess Cruiser paid $4.20 to show.
April 25, 2012
FULL FIELD SET FOR COURAGEOUS LADY
The $86,000 Courageous Lady has drawn an impressive field of nine and goes postward this Saturday evening, April 28 as Northfield Park’s eleventh race. Approximate post time is 10:50 p.m. The race is an open event for North America’s top three-year-old-filly pacers and is the first national stake of 2012.
Trainer Ron Burke, who won both the Battle of Lake Erie and the Cleveland Classic in 2011, will start four of this year’s talented fillies. Burke trains the morning line favorite, Destiny’s Chance (2-1), and the second morning line favorite, Frontierpan (4-1).
Locally based Northfield Park Wall Of Famer Tye Loy will attempt to become the first trainer ever to win this event three times. He won in 2009 with Sand E Fiftyfive and again in 2010 with Sand Windsor.
The 2012 Courageous Lady Field
#1 - Podges Lady prepared for this race by qualifying three times, the most recent being a 1:58 win on April 18 at Balmoral Park. She is a daughter of The Panderosa and was a winner in three of thirteen starts last year, taking a mark of 1:52.1 at The Meadows and earning $214,728. Podges Lady is owned by Sawgrass Farms and is trained by Joseph Seekman. She was assigned a morning line of 7-2 and is scheduled to have the driving services of Northfield Park leading driver Ryan Stahl.
#2 - Destiny’s Chance is a daughter of Four Starzzz Shark and won seven of fourteen races last year, taking a 1:52 mark at The Red Mile. She is the richest filly in the race, bankrolling $287,098. Owned by Randy Ringer and trained by Ron Burke, she shows two qualifiers this season, winning handily in both. Her most recent effort was a 1:55 win on April 20 at The Meadows. Northfield Park Executive Vice President of Racing and Simulcasting Dave Bianconi has made Destiny’s Chance the favorite. She is one of two fillies that have listed Dave Palone* to drive.
#3 - Cruzin Tothe Dance is one of three Yankee Cruiser fillies starting in this year’s event. Owned by Carl Howard and trained by Virgil Morgan Jr, Cruzin Tothe Dance’s freshman campaign garnered earnings of $58,891. She took a mark of 1:55.4 at The Meadows. Morgan has not started this filly in 2012 but has raced her in three qualifiers to tighten up for Saturday’s race. She is one of two fillies that Dan Noble* will choose from and carries a morning line of 10-1.
#4 - Princess Cruiser is owned by Miller’s Stable and trained by James Mulinix. She has two starts this year, winning her most recent race on April 20 at Hoosier Park, where she lowered her lifetime mark to 1:55.3. The daughter of Yankee Cruiser has earnings of $69,543 and has won four of twelve career starts. Kayne Kauffman picks up the driving assignment aboard this 8-1 morning line starter.
#5 - Frontierpan made her first start of the year on April 13, finishing third and race-timed in 1:53.1 at The Meadows. Frontierpan is owned by Peter Pan Stables of nearby Pepper Pike, Ohio and is trained by Ron Burke. Her two-year-old season consisted of fourteen starts, of which she won five. This daughter of No Pan Intended has earnings of $136,938 and a lifetime mark of 1:53.3 at Harrah’s Chester. Pennsylvania regular Mike Wilder is listed to drive this 4-1 morning line second favorite.
#6 - Sand Latte’ has already won four races this year and will try to become the third Tye Loy-trained and Bill Sanders-owned filly to win the Courageous Lady. The Loy/Sanders connection won this stakes race in 2009 with Sand E Fiftyfive and again in 2010 with Sand Windsor. Sand Latte’ had two unsuccessful starts as a two-year old, but her three year-old campaign so far shows promise. In addition to four wins, this Real Desire filly has already banked $26,760 this year and has a mark of 1:53.3 at The Meadows. Aaron Merriman has been named to pilot the filly at a morning line of 12-1.
#7 - Darena Hanover was a four-time winner last year in thirteen starts. This daughter of Yankee Cruiser just lowered her mark on April 20 at Harrah’s Chester to 1:52 and has earned $106,214 lifetime. Owned by Burke Racing Stable and trained by Ron Burke, her Harrah’s win was her only start this year. This 6-1 morning line selection is one of two fillies listing Hall of Famer Dave Palone* to drive.
#8 - Blows Me Away will go to post for owners William Heinz of Madison, Ohio and Jack Heinz of Mentor, Ohio. Sam Schillaci trains this New York-bred daughter of American Ideal. She was a six-time winner last year, earning a mark of 1:57.3 at Saratoga and bankrolling $36,485. The Courageous Lady will mark her sophomore debut after starting in three qualifiers to prepare for the event. She is the morning line long shot at 20-1 and is one of two starters with 2011 national driving champion Dan Noble* requested to drive.
#9 - Babe Per View has not raced this year but has three qualifiers under her belt, one being a 1:55.2 winning effort on April 6 at The Meadows. The Perretti Racing Stable owns Babe Per View, a daughter of Rocknroll Hanover, and is conditioned by Ron Burke. Last season, she hit the board six times, winning one of nine starts and earning $29,543. At long odds of 15-1, she starts from the second tier and will be handled by Chris Page.
* Requested by owner/trainer interests to drive. Palone and Noble will decide which horse to drive by 9:00 am Thursday, April
April 23, 2012
STAHL LEADS DRIVER STANDINGS
Ryan Stahl has emerged at the top of the 2012 Driver Standings after stellar performances the last two Fridays. Each Friday night, Stahl won six of the twelve races, placing him sixteen wins ahead of Tyler Smith. Stahl has garnered 131 victories this season, outdistancing Smith (115), Aaron Merriman (77), Kurt Sugg (74) and JD Wengerd (60). Stahl has never won the Northfield driving title but has been the runner-up, most recently in 2011. His win tally for 2012 currently ranks him 17th nationally. Ryan has 2,808 career wins with driver purse earnings in excess of $8,500,000.
Kevin Ehrhardt holds a slim lead in the 2012 Trainer Standings. Ehrhardt has conditioned 23 winners and holds a slim lead over Jim Otto, who has 21. Calvin Hollar (19), Darrell Rideout (18) and Don Pfister (17) complete the top five.
RONALD BURKE TRAINS FIVE FILLIES
STAKED TO THE COURAGEOUS LADY
The ($90,000 est.) Courageous Lady goes postward this Saturday evening, April 28. The race is an open stakes event for North America’s top three-year-old-filly pacers and is the first national stake of 2012. Ronald Burke trains five of the 22 fillies nominated to the Courageous Lady.
Babe Per View has not raced this year but does have two qualifiers under her belt, one being a 1:55.2 winning effort on April 6 at The Meadows. The Perretti Racing Stable owns Babe Per View, a daughter of Rocknroll Hanover. Last season, she hit the board six times, winning one of nine starts and earning $29,543.
Darena Hanover was a four-time winner last year in thirteen starts. This daughter of Yankee Cruiser took her mark at The Meadows in 1:53.3 and earned $98,714. She is owned by Burke Racing Stable and shows one qualifying effort this season, a 1:55.2 winning effort on April 13 at The Meadows.
Destiny’s Chance is a daughter of Four Starzzz Shark and won seven of twelve races last year, taking a 1:52 mark at The Red Mile and bankrolling $287,098. She is owned by Randy Ringer and shows one qualifier this season, a 1:57.2 win on April 13 at The Meadows.
Frontierpan made her first start of the year on April 13, finishing third and race-timed in 1:53.1 at The Meadows. Frontierpan is owned by Peter Pan Stables of nearby Pepper Pike, Ohio. Her two-year-old season consisted of fourteen starts, of which she won five. This daughter of No Pan Intended has earnings of $136,938 and a lifetime mark of 1:53.3 at Harrah’s Chester.
That’s My Girl G is owned by the partnership of Burke Racing Stable, M1 Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and Phillip Collura. This daughter of Mcardle has one win and $28, 569 in earnings in fifteen lifetime starts. She took her mark of 1:56.1 at The Meadows.
April 18, 2012
SUGG REACHES 2,000 CAREER WINS
Kurt Sugg scored the 2,000th win of his driving career while driving RUA Looker in Northfield Park’s 12th race on Tuesday evening. They went off as the 2/5 betting choice and took the lead right off the gate. The pair never had an anxious moment at any point in the mile and won by 1¼ length, stopping the clock in 2:01.4. Sugg also co-owns and trains the ten-year-old son of Ilookelikemymom. This win marks the 6th victory of 2012 and the 49th career victory for RUA Looker.
Sugg’s richest win came in 2006 when he drove Dunkster to victory in the $105,000 Dygert at Hawthorne. Kurt’s fastest win was timed in 1:52.1 aboard Gordie How at The Delaware County Fair.
The 42-year-old Sugg remembers his first win behind Mountain Director at the Hancock County Fair in Findlay, Ohio when he was a mere 16-years old. He started driving in 1986, and the 2,000th win increased his driver purse earnings to in excess of $8,000,000.
After just missing in two other races on the evening, Kurt commented: “I am really happy to have reached 2,000 wins, and it feels really good to have done it with my own horse.”
April 10, 2012
COURAGEOUS LADY SET FOR APRIL 28
The $90,000 est. Courageous Lady, an open event for North America’s top three year-old filly pacers, is the first national stakes race in 2012. The race has 22 fillies nominated, and some of them have been preparing for the event in impressive fashion.
Frontierpan has two winning qualifiers under her belt at The Meadows. The Ronald Burke-trained filly’s latest qualifier was on April 6, where she prevailed by 13 ¼ lengths and stopped the clock in 1:54.4. Frontierpan is owned by Peter Pan Stables of Pepper Pike, Ohio. Her two-year-old season consisted of 14 starts and five wins. The daughter of No Pan Intended has earnings of $136,938 and a lifetime mark of 1:53.3 at Harrah’s Chester.
Sand Latte’ has already won four races this year and will try to become the third Tye Loy-trained and Bill Sanders-owned filly to win the Courageous Lady. The Loy/Sanders connection won this stakes race in 2009 with Sand E Fiftyfive and again in 2010 with Sand Windsor. Sand Latte’ had two unsuccessful starts as a two-year old, but her three year-old campaign so far shows promise. In addition to four wins, this Real Desire filly has already banked $25,760 this year and has a mark of 1:53.3 at The Meadows.
Sectionline Yankee is another filly with solid credentials who is heading into the Courageous Lady. This Yankee Cruiser filly is rich with Buckeye connections. She is trained at the iconic Delaware County Fairgrounds by Michael Conklin and is owned by Harold Lee Bauder and Harold L. Bauder of Delaware and Michael Dixon of Hilliard, Ohio. Sectionline Yankee’s freshman campaign bankrolled $86,345; she earned a mark of 1:54.4 at Delaware. Yet to race at three, Sectionline Yankee qualified at Northfield Park on April 5 in an impressive gate-to-wire effort of 1:58.3.
KANEOKA GETS AN “A”
Local driver Rachel Kaneoka was just upgraded from a “P” (provisional) driver to an “A” license holder. Kaneoka started her driving career in 2011 and has piloted eleven victories while amassing purse earnings of nearly $25,000. Northfield Park Presiding Judge Bud Teeters stated that Rachel is only the second female that he has upgraded to an A driver in the twelve years he has been a Judge.
SOPHIA’S (OFF TRACK) SUCCESSES
Pacing mare Sophia has begun a second career and has already seen success. The Admirals Galley mare has 261 career starts and lifetime earnings of $69,166. Although she is ten-year old, she is not slowing down. In addition to having already raced twelve times this year, she has been training for show competition as a riding horse. Sophia recently performed in her first horse show and was the blue ribbon winner in both the “Ball in a Barrel” and “Pole Bending” classes at the Spinning Wheels Horse Show in Geneva, Ohio. Her rider was none other than her regular driver, Frank Harris. The event represented Frank’s first horse show competition, too.
HARD ROCK INTERNATIONAL ANNOUNCES JOINT VENTURE FOR
HARD ROCK GAMING AND ENTERTAINMENT FACILITY AT NORTHFIELD PARK IN NORTHEAST OHIO
April 5, Northfield, OH. – Hard Rock International, owner of one of the world’s most iconic brands, announced today that it has entered into a joint venture and related agreements to acquire equity in, and to develop and operate a Hard Rock Gaming and Entertainment Facility at Northfield Park racetrack in Northeast Ohio. This proposed project is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, including a successful resolution of the pending litigation in Ohio regarding video lottery terminals (“VLTs”).
The proposed $275 million Hard Rock project would include a Hard Rock-branded gaming center, premium steakhouse, Hard Rock Cafe, ongoing lineup of live music and iconic music memorabilia from Hard Rock’s unmatched collection, as well as a center bar, buffet and conference and meeting space. The development is expected to generate approximately 1,000 permanent jobs, more than 1,000 construction jobs and countless jobs associated with local suppliers and vendors.
The Hard Rock Gaming and Entertainment Facility would be developed as part of the current Northfield Park Racetrack located in Northfield, Ohio. Northfield Park is one of the nation’s premier harness racetracks, and the joint venture with Hard Rock will enable the racetrack to provide additional enhancements to its current programming that features more than 200 live racing events each year.
“We are thrilled to be working with Milstein Entertainment and the Northfield Park team on this project,” said Jim Allen, Chairman of Hard Rock International. “We look forward to bringing the renowned Hard Rock brand to Northfield Park, as the Hard Rock Gaming and Entertainment Facility would be a state-of-the-art venue, providing world-class entertainment experiences that are unique to the region to complement the local community and its surroundings.”
“Being from Northeast Ohio, I take great pride in the region and the partners we choose to bring here,” said Brock Milstein, Chairman and CEO, Northfield Park and Milstein Entertainment. “Given the impressive history of the Hard Rock brand and its reputation for developing fun and unique experiences around the world, we couldn’t have chosen a better global brand to develop and operate this venue.”
Internationally recognized as a world-class entertainment and lifestyle brand, Hard Rock’s current Hotel and Casino properties include two of the most successful resort casinos in the United States, Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood and Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa, both in Florida. Recent expansion has brought the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino brand to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, and additional hotel projects have been announced including Hard Rock Hotel Panama Megapolis and three new all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotels in Mexico. Hard Rock also has Hotel and Casino properties in Macau, Las Vegas and Biloxi, as well as a portfolio of standalone hotels and destination resorts operating throughout North America and Asia.
About Hard Rock International
With a total of 173 venues in 53 countries, including 138 Cafes and 15 Hotels/Casinos, Hard Rock International is one of the world's most globally recognized brands. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. In addition to the two flagship Seminole Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood, Fla., Hard Rock Hotels/Casinos are located in Las Vegas, Biloxi, Orlando, Chicago, San Diego, Pattaya, Bali, Macau, Penang, Singapore and Punta Cana. Additional hotel and casino projects have been announced including Panama Megapolis, scheduled to open in 2012; Cancun and Vallarta scheduled to open in 2012; and Riviera Maya, Hungary, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, scheduled to open in 2013. Hard Rock International is owned by Seminole Hard Rock Entertainment, Inc. For further details on Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos, visit www.hardrockhotels.com. For more information on Hard Rock International, visit www.hardrock.com.
About Northfield Park and Milstein Entertainment LLC
Northfield Park, Ohio’s premier racetrack and one of the nation’s top harness racing facilities, is situated on 115 acres located 15 miles south of Cleveland and 18 miles north of Akron, Ohio. Northfield Park is a year round operation that conducts more than 200 nights of live racing a year and simulcasts both thoroughbred and harness racing 364 days a year. Northfield Park was purchased by the Ohio based Milstein family in 1972. Various Milstein companies have invested in excess of a billion dollars in Ohio business ventures and commercial real estate projects over the past 50 years and the Milstein’s, through Milstein Entertainment LLC, are solidly committed to making Northfield Park one of the top entertainment destinations in the region. For more information on Northfield Park, please visit www.northfieldpark.com.
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April 3, 2012
NORTHFIELD PARK TO HOST FIRST AND LAST NATIONALLY
OPEN STAKES RACES FOR THREE YEAR-OLDS
April begins a full slate of stakes action at Northfield Park. The $90,000 (est.) Courageous Lady will go to post on Saturday, April 28. This race is a nationally open stakes event for North America’s top three year-old filly pacers and is the first national stakes race in 2012.
Among the 22 fillies nominated to the Courageous Lady are last year’s two year-old stand-outs: Class Of O Nine (1:55 H, $237,150), Destiny’s Chance (1:52 M, $287,098), Frontierpan (1:53.3 F, $136,938) and Podges Lady (1:52.1 F, $214,728).
The $140,000 (est.) Cleveland Classic is the final open stakes event this year. North America’s top three year-old pacing colts will take the stage to compete for this year’s Classic crown on Saturday, December 8.
There are 38 colts nominated to the Cleveland Classic, including last year’s stand-outs: A Rocknroll Dance (1:49.1 S, $863,325), Bolt The Duer (1:51 M, $214,058), Caviart Key (1:53.1 M, 191,073), I Found My Beach (1:53.4 H, $197,577), Star Recruit (1:53.1 F, $222,309) and Sweet Lou (1:49 S, $686,647).
In other racing news at Northfield Park, the $100,000 (est.) Battle Of Lake Erie is set for Saturday, July 21 and has 28 nominees that have combined career earnings in excess of $20,000,000. The nominated list includes defending champion Foiled Again (1:48.1 S, $3,431,055), and millionaire performers Aracache Hanover (149.1 F, $1,058,993), Atochia (1:49 S, $1,376,652) and Won the West (1:47 M, $3,928,036).
Northfield Park’s Stakes for 2012
Saturday, April 28 – Courageous Lady
Tuesday, July 3 – Ohio Sires Stakes (two year-old filly pace and trot)
Saturday, July 21 – Battle Of Lake Erie and Ohio Sires Stakes (two year-old
colt pace and trot)
Saturday, July 28 – Summit County Fair Stakes
Friday, August 17 – Ohio Sires Stakes (three year-old filly pace and trot)
Saturday, August 18 – Ohio Sires Stakes (three year-old colt pace and trot)
Friday, August 31 – Ohio Sires Stakes (two year-old filly pace and trot)
Saturday, September 1 – Ohio Sires Stakes (two year-old colt pace and trot)
Saturday, December 8 – Cleveland Classic
Triple Crown Countdown
Northfield Park will once again offer all the Triple Crown races kicking off with the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 5. Doors open early at 9:30 am with the first post at Churchill Downs set for 10:30 am. Plus, we’ll have simulcasting action from over 40 other tracks around the world. Triple Crown action continues with the Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 19 and the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 9.
Northfield Park Players Club members will receive their spring rewards mailing the week of April 16 with points accumulated through Sunday, April 15…The free-to-enter $900 weekly handicapping contest continues every Sunday through June. The top four finishers every Sunday automatically qualify for the $5,000 Final on Sunday, July 1…The United States Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Initiative continues every Monday and Tuesday at Northfield Park with the Guaranteed $15,000 Pick 4 pool. Plus, don’t forget the low 14% takeout rate on all Northfield Park Pick 3’s, the Pick 4 and the Pick 5, the best wagering bargains in all of harness racing.
February 21, 2012
AARON MERRIMAN REACHES 5,000 CAREER WINS
Aaron Merriman scored the 5,000th win of his driving career while driving Genesis See Yah in Northfield Park’s 9th race on Monday evening. Merriman boldly loomed from mid-pack to quickly pass their competition and drew off to a 10 ¼ length win. Genesis See Yah’s 1:54.3 win marks a new lifetime best for the 6 year-old pacing gelding.
Merriman (33 years old) remembers his first win as being aboard a pacing mare named Albert’s Filly at Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio. Although there are 5,000 to choose from, Merriman says that he has no favorite win. “They all feel the same,” explained Merriman. “The winner’s circle is always happy and you never get tired of making people happy.”
Merriman started driving at the age of 21 and appreciates the successful 12-year career he has experienced: accomplishing the 5,000-win milestone and earning purses exceeding $23,000,000.
“I am just really grateful to have been given the opportunities,” said Merriman. “Considering everything that has happened in my driving career, this really feels good.”
Merriman’s richest win came in a $300,000 Kentucky Sire Stakes Final aboard Palazzo Princess. Aaron’s fastest win was race timed in 1:50.0. He rates the toughest horse he has ever driven as Midnight Jewel.
February 16, 2012
TONY MORGAN RETURNS FOR CAREER MILESTONE
Troy, Ohio native Tony Morgan is traveling back to the Buckeye State in hopes of reaching the 14,000-career win milestone at Northfield Park. Word of Morgan’s appearance quickly spread through the backstretch, and he was named to drive in all 13 of Northfield’s races on Friday, February 17.
The 53 year-old Morgan will be the fourth driver in history to reach 14,000 wins. Herve Filion, 15,180 career wins, Dave Palone 14,929, and Catello Manzi 14,365, are the only members in the prestigious 14,000 win club. Tony’s current win tally is 13,998. He is scheduled to drive Thursday at Dover Downs.
Morgan can count the Jugette, Woodrow Wilson and American National as the biggest races he’s won. His career purse earnings stand at $107,977,462. Morgan has driven horses such as Quick Pulse Mindale, Sannabelle Island, Artistic Vision and Magic Shopper.
He remembers his first win as being aboard a gelding named Peachakona at Ohio’s Mercer County Fair. Although there are nearly 14,000 to choose from, Morgan proclaims that his favorite win “… always the most recent one.”
Morgan appreciates that he has had a long and successful career and says there is nothing left that he really wants to accomplish. “I’ve cut down a lot and I don’t have many more aspirations,” commented Tony. “I like driving everyday and I really enjoy the daily grind.”
“It will be nice to come to Northfield for this win,” explained Morgan. “As far as I know, my mom, dad and nephew are all coming to watch me and there could possibly be some other members of my family present, too.” “I look forward to seeing them and also Flash (Dennis Cheesebrew). He helped a lot in arranging my visit to Northfield,” said Morgan. Morgan will be leaving Dover after the races on Thursday and driving to Cleveland so he can haul his race bike himself. “I like to ride my own bike,” he said. “I don’t have any other way to get it to Cleveland, so I am taking it myself.”
Friday will be the second time that Morgan has journeyed to northeast Ohio to reach a career milestone. In December 2006, he came to Northfield to capture his 1,000th win. He reached that mark on December 29, 2006 aboard the trotting mare Eden Rock and became only the second driver ever to win 1,000 in a year. The first was Walter Case, Jr. Since 2006, Tim Tetrick has been the only other driver to record this achievement.
February 16, 2012
SMITH HOPES TO MAKE HIS PRESENCE FELT
Not long after young southern Ohio driving talent Tyler Smith burst on to the scene as Northfield Park’s leading driver, another southern Ohio driver Jeremy Smith (no relation to Tyler), arrived with lofty ambitions of his own. Jeremy, too hopes to make his presence felt over Northfield’s Flying Turns.
J. Smith has been making the nightly commute to Cleveland from his hometown of Washington Courthouse and plans on continuing to burnish his skills at Northfield Park. “So far I love it,” commented Jeremy. “It has been nice because I live about one mile from Tyler Smith and we can ride together.”
Jeremy has been driving since 2002, primarily at Scioto Downs and Lebanon Raceway, but decided to move for an increase in driving opportunities. The extra-long commute has been paying off; he has earned a UDRS of .296.
Smith has 490 lifetime wins with purse earnings of $1,104,507. He rates BT Attack as the best horse he has ever driven. Smith’s biggest race was an Open Pace at Scioto Downs, where he recorded his fastest win time steering What’s The Hurry in 1:52.0.
Jeremy’s love for harness racing is evident, and he’s hoping to make Northfield home. “I am very excited to be competing at Northfield and I just hope that I keep picking up drives,” stated Smith.
GOLD FEVER STARTS A NEW LIFE
Classy veteran pacer Gold Fever has officially been retired after 323 career starts. The 13 year-old son of Artsplace netted 56 wins, 39 seconds and 51 third place finishes. Gold Fever took his lifetime mark of 1:51.1 as a 3 year-old at Woodbine and earned a career total of $417,258.
Trainer Darrell Rideout, who trained Gold Fever for a little over a year for owner Jim Harrington, had nothing but good things to say about the gelding. “He is a good horse to be around. I had him in the first stall of my barn. Unfortunately he’s getting old and it was time to start thinking about retirement.”
In a touching and warm conclusion, Rideout received a Facebook message from Kyle Bolon. Bolon explained that his family once owned Gold Fever and asked about the possibility of his family taking care of Gold Fever after his retirement. After receiving promises that the horse would be cared for forever and never be raced again, Rideout and Harrington decided that Bolon’s offer was what Gold Fever deserved and that he would spend retirement with Kyle’s mother and niece.
Shortly after Gold Fever’s final race on February 7, 2012, he was transported to Pennsylvania and taken to Bolon’s farm. Gold Fever has now started training for his new career as a riding horse for Bolon’s niece, Caitlyn.
SPIN AND WIN A PRESIDENT
This Presidents’ Day, Monday, February 22, all Players Club members are eligible to test their luck to win cash! From 1 pm to 3 pm members can spin the big red barrel and select an envelope. Inside each envelope is a George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Jackson or Ulysses S. Grant. That’s correct each envelope contains either a $1, $2, $5, $20 or $50 bill.
We are open early (11:30 am Presidents’ Day) for all your afternoon simulcast action. Live racing headlines the Monday evening action beginning at 7:00 pm. Don’t miss out on our President’s Day specials all day and night. The Washington Special ($1 each) includes hot dogs, popcorn, peanuts, small soft drinks and coffee, while the Jefferson Special ($2) is an ice cold, 16-ounce draft beer. If it’s a cheeseburger and potato chips combo you’re looking for, then try the Lincoln Special ($5). For the Jackson Special ($20) stop by the Trackside Lounge for a bucket (6 bottles) of Labatt or Miller beer.
January 26, 2012
RACE MARE TO BROODMARE
HILLCREST CRYSTAL MAKES THE TRANSITION
Seven year-old pacing mare Hillcrest Crystal raced her final race on January 20 and has been officially retired to be a broodmare. Her final start resulted in a runner-up performance. “I was hoping she would win her last one, but she raced so good from the eight-hole, it felt like a win to me,” commented owner Julie Allen.
The second place finish pushed Hillcrest Crystal’s lifetime earnings to just over $30,000. This daughter of I Scoot Hanover has garnered ten lifetime wins. The fastest came at Balmoral Park at the age of three, when she stopped the clock in 1:56.
Allen describes Hillcrest Crystal as “my doll baby,” stating: “My daughter and I are so attached to her and, although she is not a high caliber mare, we will never give her up.”
Hillcrest Crystal is being bred to new Ohio sire and 2011 Brown Jug winner Big Bad John, who carries a stud fee of $4,000 and stands at Midland Acres. “We are hoping something comes up with the slots and then we can have a good young horse to race for the increased purses,” Allen concluded.
HANDICAPPING CONTEST CONTINUES
Don’t forget to take a double shot at the $1,800 weekly Winter Handicapping Challenge. The contest is available every Saturday and Sunday through February. Prize winnings are $500 for 1st place, $250 for 2nd, $100 for 3rd and $50 for 4th each contest day! Plus, if any contestant wins both Saturday and Sunday’s contests, he or she wins an additional Sweep-A-Weekend Jackpot of $2,000. The four top contest finishers also qualify for the $5,000 Championship Final on Sunday, March 5.
THE SUN SHINES IN FLORIDA AND CALIFORNIA
This Saturday is Florida Sunshine Millions Day from Gulfstream Park and Sunshine Millions Day from Santa Anita Park, and Northfield Park has all the great racing action. Don’t miss the $250,000 Guaranteed “Luck” Pick Six starting in Gulfstream’s eighth race. The pick six features three races from each track. Doors open early at 11 AM.
January 11, 2012
BIG BAD TJ OFF TO GOOD START IN 2012
Seven year-old pacer Big Bad TJ has started the new year in impressive style, with a win and a second in his first two outings. On Monday, January 9, he cruised gate to wire to prevail by 3 ¾ lengths in 1:55.4.
Owner/trainer Terry Tackett bought Big Bad TJ as a yearling from the Blooded Horse Sale in Delaware, Ohio for the bargain price of $1,600. “I figured a Western Ideal yearling was worth the risk for that price,” commented Tackett. Shortly after his purchase, Terry’s father, Thurman Tackett, changed the horse’s name to Big Bad TJ, naming him after Terry’s son, TJ.
The father-son team broke Big Bad TJ, but only trained him down and turned him out because he was not ready to race as a two year-old. Big Bad TJ started his racing career at the age of three, winning his first start at Northfield Park in the time of 1:58.3. Since then he has started 129 more times and has won 20 races, taking a mark of 1:53.4 as a five year-old at Scioto Downs.
Terry Tackett, who had only helped his father while holding down a full-time factory job, switched roles with his dad and took over training in 2010 when his father was diagnosed with cancer. Terry lost his help and mentor in November, 2010 when his father passed away. “When dad got sick, I never thought twice about quitting my job but only about keeping going what my dad had started,” recalled Terry.
Terry raced Big Bad TJ until March 2011, when the horse experienced health complications that forced him off the racetrack for what might have been a permanent retirement. “I was so concerned for him, and I was willing to do whatever he needed,” said Terry. His time of rest was not the most restful as Big Bad TJ bred all five of Terry’s mares. “TJ was turned out at my farm and I was feeding him, so I thought I would get the most out of it by breeding my mares to him,” explained Terry. Not only was his rest not restful, it was much shorter than Terry and the vets expected. “TJ is the strongest horse I have ever seen and I thought I would try and bring him back,” said Terry, who began training Big Bad TJ just 60 days after turning him out.
The rest of Big Bad TJ’s story has yet to be written. He continues to win races, and his first foal is set to be born in the near future.
January 4, 2012
2011 LEADING DRIVER HAD MOST WINS IN NORTH AMERICA
Dan Noble topped the Northfield Park 2011 leading drivers by authoritative numbers, winning 436 races over the Flying Turns. His nearest competitor, Ryan Stahl, drove 283 winners. Kurt Sugg (252), Wyatt Irvine (223) and Aaron Merriman (196) completed the topfive.
Winning Northfield’s dash title was not Noble’s only accomplishment. He also claimed the leading driver titles at Scioto Downs, The Red Mile and Lebanon’s spring meet.
Noble’s success made him the winningest driver in North America for 2011. He scored 773 victories, finishing in front of George Brennan who had 754 wins. Tim Tetrick (746), Dave Palone (698) and George Napolitano Jr. (540) followed.
Noble’s busy 2011 season included a lot of traveling, but he says he had the time of his life and is attempting to earn this top honor again in 2012: “It was a long year to pursue this title, and I'm really glad I did it,” Noble commented. “I am ready to go again for 2012. I am going to try and do this again in the New Year even if it means being on the road so much and living out of my truck for another year."
MILLNER TAKES NORTHFIELD TRAINING TITLE AGAIN
Veteran Northfield Park trainer D J Millner holds the top training honor for the second year in a row, garnering 91 local victories. Darrell Rideout finished second with 78 wins. Calvin Hollar (70), Billy Knipper (65) and Kevin Ehrhardt (59) completed the top five conditioners’ list for 2011.
Millner also is among the top trainers at Buffalo Raceway and Batavia Downs. He has 574 career training wins and total purse earnings of $2,180,166.
NORTHFIELD PARK TO OFFER 211 NIGHTS OF RACING IN 2012
Ohio’s leading racetrack by total handle, in both the on-track and export categories, is offering live harness racing four nights a week to start the 2012 racing year. January and February racing is Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Beginning in March Northfield drops Wednesday racing and adds Saturday evening racing. That four-night-a-week schedule stays in place until November when Wednesday is added back in the mix for a five-night schedule during the final two months of the year. Exceptions to the 2012 schedule when no live racing is offered are: Kentucky Derby Day (May 5), Preakness Stakes Day (May 19), Memorial Day (May 28), Belmont Stakes Day (June 9), Labor Day (September 3), Breeders’ Cup Day (November 3), Christmas Eve (December 24), Christmas Day (December 25) and New Year’s Eve (December 31).
Northfield Park’s three marquee racing events are as follows: $100,000 (est.) Courageous Lady Saturday, April 28; the $100,000 (est.) Battle of Lake Erie Saturday, July 21; and the $150,000 (est.) Cleveland Classic Saturday, December 8.
SEASON OF GIVING
The spirit of the holiday season sparks generosity in many. Few show the true spirit of the holidays like 18 year-old Tyler Smith. Smith donated $1,000 to Karen’s Kids, an organization in Southern Ohio, which provides needy children with Christmas gifts they would not otherwise receive. “I just wanted to do something to help,” said Smith.
Tyler is a native of Washington Court House and started and ended 2011 by driving at Northfield Park. In the spring Smith took his talents to Indiana. He was the seventh-leading driver at Indiana Downs and ranked tenth at both Northfield and Hoosier Park. He earned over $1,000,000 in purse earnings in 2011.
HARNESS RACING APPRECIATION NIGHTS
Each and every Saturday evening in January and February Northfield Park is offering Harness Racing Appreciation Nights from 6 pm to 11 pm. All racing programs from the approximately 10 different harness tracks Northfield is simulcasting are just 50 cents each. There will be $1 hot dogs, soft drinks, coffee, popcorn and other specialty items. 12 oz. Miller and Labatt Blue drafts will also be offered for $1 from 6 pm to 11 pm. Simulcasting begins shortly after noon and continues til past midnight every Saturday in January and February.
FRIDAY NIGHT BUFFET SPECIAL RETURNS
The Lady Luck’s Buffet special returns every Friday evening in January and February for the reduced price of 2 for $29.99. Sure to satisfy any appetite, the all-you-can eat selections include Top Round of Beef, chicken and seafood entrees, delectable side dishes, a fresh salad bar and a variety of desserts including a make-your-own ice cream sundae bar.
Reservations include two free clubhouse admissions and live racing programs. For more information, or to make a reservation, please call 330-467-4101 ext. 203.
HANDICAPPING CONTEST RETURNS
Beginning Sunday, January 8, the $1,800 weekly Winter Handicapping Challenge begins. The contest continues every Saturday and Sunday through February. Prize winnings are $500 for 1st place, $250 for 2nd, $100 for 3rd and $50 for 4th each contest day! Plus, if any contestant wins both Saturday and Sunday’s contests, he or she wins an additional Sweep-A-Weekend Jackpot of $2,000. The four top contest finishers also qualify for the $5,000 Championship Final on Sunday, March 5.