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May 14, 2011 - 12:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Here's a press release from Batavia Downs:

Congratulations goes out to Heidi Rosario of Buffalo who won Friday night's (May13) Western OTB/NHHC handicapping contest qualifier, in the clubhouse at Batavia Downs Casino.

Rosario bested leader Hyland Clark in the final contest race.

She’ll represent Western OTB in the $50,000 National Harness Handicapping Championship to be held at the Meadowland Racetrack on July 9th. Best of Luck to Heidi and many thanks to everyone that participated.

Later this year Western OTB and Batavia Downs Casino will host a qualifier for the 2012 Horse Players World Series. Details will be announced soon. Check out www.westernotb.com <http://www.westernotb.com>  for more information.

March 19, 2011 - 6:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, business.

For the 38th time, the Batavia Jaycees are hosting its annual Home Show. This year, it is once again at Batavia Downs. 

The show is open Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. A couple dozen vendors are on hand to help owners explore options for home improvement.

January 22, 2011 - 8:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, Genesee Cancer Assistance.

gencancer_downs01.jpg

Genesee Cancer Assistance held one of its biggest annual fundraisers this evening at Batavia Downs. It featured a full buffet-style dinner, hosted bar, basket raffles, auction and music from The Trolls.

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Above, John Gerace, his wife Rhonda and children Taylor, 16, and Jackson, 13. John, a member of Rotary, is the son of Joe Gerace, one of the founders Genesee Cancer Assistance and also a member of Rotary. Rhonda, too, is a member of Rotary (There, that should be worth some fines.)

January 9, 2011 - 12:02pm
posted by Melissa George in batavia, Batavia Downs, jaycees, Home Show.
Event Date and Time: 
March 19, 2011 - 10:00am to March 20, 2011 - 5:00pm
November 29, 2010 - 2:08pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing, fred haslip.

This information comes from a news release written by Tim Bojarski, for the Western New York Chapter of the U.S. Harness Writers' Association.

The Upstate New York Chapter of the U.S. Harness Writers’ Association has announced that longtime trainer-driver Fred Haslip will receive its 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award.

It will be presented to him in the Winner’s Circle during the Upstate Harness Writers' Association's “Night of Distinction,” which will be held at Batavia Downs Casino on Saturday, Dec. 4.

Haslip was one of the most sought after catch-drivers in Western New York during the 1970s and '80s, and was responsible for teaming some of the best horses to race on that circuit during that time.

The lifelong resident of Basom started driving at fairs in 1959 and scored his first pari-mutuel win in 1960.

During his 51-year career he posted 2,585 lifetime driving wins and banked $6 million dollars in purse money -- doing it the hard way, mostly in overnight events in an era where purses were not what they are today.

The list of horses that Haslip has teamed over the years is long and includes names such as: Diamond Sparkler, p, 9, Q1:56.3 ($328,737); Happy Sparkler, p, 9, 1:58.2h ($156,756); Handsome Boy, 5, 2:00.2h ($142,048); Keystone Astro, p, 7, 2:01.1h ($136,204); and Kay El, Jack the Baron, Coaltown Smoke, Flawless Sparkler, Little Commish, Princess Dee Dee, Tarvon, Red Almond, BBQ, Paige Man and Cheryl Grattan.

But Haslip is probably most noted for developing the former double-gaited record holder, Excalibur.

Excalibur, who was purchased as a 4-year-old for the paltry sum of $3,500, in 1972, would go on to bank just under $200,000 in his career. In 1977, Excalibur set the North American record for a double-gaited gelding when he trotted a mile in 2:03.3. That time equaled his pacing record, set in 1974, and those times combined were 4:07.1, which broke a record set in 1939.

Excalibur raced until he was 14, retiring in 1982. In 169 lifetime starts, on both gaits combined, he posted 50 wins -- 12 on the trot and 38 on the pace. The horse was such a versatile athlete that from 1975 to 1977 Haslip raced him on both gaits, switching him back and forth during the year.

The 68-year-old Haslip cut back on his drives substantially in the mid 1990s and for the last 10 years has started less than 50 times a year. He still trains a four-horse stable of his own on his farm, but elects to appoint catch-drivers to do the teaming.

November 28, 2010 - 1:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

News release from Batavia Downs:

The dynamic duo of  driver Ken and trainer Sherri Holliday had a huge Saturday night at Batavia Downs Casino when they made five winner circle appearances, including winning the featured $9,000 Open with the rages to riches pacer Sand Forever.
 
Just a $2500 claimer at Running Aces Park earlier this season, Sand Forever  made the transition to the Open ranks a winning one when he flew down the stretch to nail the front running Most Happy Rider (Kevin Cummings) by a head in 1:57.3 in the weekly pacing feature. Zackor (Ron Beback, Jr.) checked in third.
 
The win was Sand Forever’s 15th of the 2010 campaign and 25th of his career in 80 lifetime starts. He’s a 5-year-old Stand Forever gelding. He returned $5.80 win, being sent off as the lukewarm favorite.
 
The Holliday’s other winners were Scudder ($10.00), Bruener ($5.50 - - now three for three in Western New York), Masteroftheclass ($2.60) and Nifty Prescott ($18.60).   
 
Last year’s Downs leading conditioner Sherri Holliday began the evening in a tie with Ron Beback, Jr. in the race for top trainer honors. With only two more nights left in the 2010 season her five win lead would now seem insurmountable.
 
Dave McNeight III, a 20-year-old provisional reinsman, had a night he soon won’t forget when he scored the first hat trick of his career. In 24 lifetime drives he’s won six of them and definitely looks like a young man with a bright future.  
 
Another provisional reinsman, Denny Bucceri, had a big weekend going two for two. He’s now won five times in 29 starts this year.
 
Kevin Cummings heads into closing weekend with a five win cushion over Jack Flanigen in his bid to defend his dash driving title. Both were winless on the Saturday program.
 
Racing fans are reminded there will be no live racing next Wednesday; the final two nights of the 2010 season will be Friday and Saturday.  Post time is 6:40 pm.

 

November 28, 2010 - 1:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

News release from Batavia Downs:

Owner-trainer Ronald Stebbins Fifty Two Finn solidified his stock for being named Batavia Downs Casino trotter of the year when he went wire-to wire to notch his 6th win of the summer-fall meet, in the featured $8,880 Open trot, on Friday night (Nov.26).
 
John Cummings, Jr., who had four wins on the program, guided the classy 10-year-old Movie Mogul gelding to his 46th lifetime win, holding off a closing Justine Colleen (Jack Flanigen) by a head in 2:00.4, over a racetrack covered in snow.
 
Fifty Two Finn, who made his most recent start at Vernon Downs, was claimed for $15,000 back on September 10 at Tioga Downs. He’s over $60,000 in seasonal earnings and his lifetime bankroll is more than $440,000. He returned $4.90 to win going off as the public choice.
 
Artistry in Rhythm wins Mare Open
Betty Taubers Artistry in Rhythm ($6.40) held off The Grey Filly (Ron Beback, Jr.) in deep stretch to win the co-featured $8,500 Filly and Mares Open pace by a neck in 1:59.2.
 
The 8-year-old Real Desire mare won for the 11th time this season and raised her 2010 earnings to more than $82,000. Ken Holliday was in the bike for his wife Sherri.
 
Trainer Title to Close to Call
After 69 racing programs the battle for the 2010 Downs training title couldn’t be any closer. Sherri Holliday, last years Downs leading conditioner, doubled up on the Friday evening program to tie Ron Beback, Jr. with 57 wins each. In fact there win percentages are identical at 23%.
 
With only three more racing night left in the 2010 campaign, Kevin Cummings maintains a five win lead over Jack Flanigen in the race for dash driving honors. Cummings last years Downs top driver and Flanigen, recently named Upstate New York Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association Western New York Driver of the Year, each drove a pair of winners on Friday program.

 

November 20, 2010 - 2:10pm
posted by Daniel Crofts in Batavia Downs, photos, Holidays, Craft Show.

Alicia Lurye of AK Entertainment is happy to be hosting the "Winter Wonderland of Arts, Crafts & Gifts" this weekend at Batavia Downs Casino. She said this is the first Christmas show at the Downs for many years.

"They just haven't found anyone willing to do it," she said. "And look at the turnout."

A lot of people came to browse and buy what 40 crafters and vendors had to offer:

Tami Burbules of East Pembroke offered free samples of her bread dips. She is selling them in addition to desserts, veggie dips and other treats from Gourmet Creations.

October 11, 2010 - 6:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

The "Comeback Kid," Two Twentytwo, prepping for next week’s $40,000 Robert J. Kane Memorial Pace, once again made it look easy when he notched his fifth win of the summer-fall meet in the $9,000 Preferred Handicap, Saturday night (Oct.9), at Batavia Downs Casino.

Sent off as the prohibitive 1-4 betting favorite, reinsman Jack Flanigen (recovered from his recent tumble) fired the 6-year-old Blissful Hall gelding right to the top and they made every pole a winning one cruising to an underwraps 1:54.2 score. Track announcer Joe Zambito called it a “jogburger.”
 
Compass Connection (Jim McNeight) finished 1-1/2 lengths behind in second, while Oh Gee Whiz (Ray Fisher Jr.) forced to go wide for the second week in a row behind stalled cover wound up third.
 
“He raced really well,” Downs dashing leading driver Jack Flanigen said. “It was a pretty easy win, our game plan was to try and save as much as we could for next week's Kane, and we definitely did that.”
 
“He’s the favorite for Horse of the Year, no doubt about that,” said Mike Kane, vice president of Live Racing. “We wish him well next week.”
 
Two Twentytwo ($2.70) is owned by Dominic Colarusso Jr. and trained by Richie Mays. Saturday night's win was his ninth of season in only 15 starts; he’s earned more than $225,000 lifetime.
 
Two Twentytwo was one of the top-rated 3-year-old pacers before an injury sidelined him for more than a year.
 
Rockin Ronny was Rockin
Two Twentytwo wasn’t the only one that had a big Saturday night. Veteran reinsman Ron Beback Jr. was red-hot, guiding home five winners on the 12-program including four from his own barn. Beback is currently second in the trainer standings before Sherri Holliday.
 
Kevin Cummings well on his way to 3,000 career wins scored a hat trick while Ray Fisher Jr. notched a double. Trainer Jim Graham conditioned a pair of winners.
 
Bring on the Cannolis
A Columbus Day tradition returned to Batavia Downs on Monday afternoon, the annual Italian/American drivers' race. The Downs regularly raced on Columbus Day but Monday will be the first Columbus Day program held since Western OTB purchased the historic track in 1998.
 
Carded as race seven, Tom Agosti drove favored Encil from the rail; however, Mike Caprio, a three-time winner of his event, was one to watch.

October 8, 2010 - 3:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

The in-house simulcast of race cards for the remainder of the 2010 Batavia Downs Casino harness meet in the Buffalo viewing area have been canceled.

The announcement was made Tuesday by Michael D. Kane, vice president, Operations and Live Racing.

“Due to unforeseen contractual obligations, WGRZ/Universal Sports/Buffalo was unable to carry the required number of Batavia Downs Casino live racing simulcasts," Kane said in a news release.

"We have, therefore, canceled our agreement with WGRZ in the Buffalo viewing area for the balance of the 2010 harness racing schedule. Live racing from Batavia will continue in the Rochester market."

The Batavia races will continue to be featured on Channel 98 on Time-Warner’s basic digital package in the Rochester market. The coverage area includes all or parts of Genesee, Orleans, Monroe, Livingston, Wayne, Ontario, Seneca, Yates and Steuben counties.

In the Buffalo area, the races had been carried on Channel 114 on Time-Warner (Channel 111 in Olean), WGRZ Digital Channel 2-2 and Verizon Fios Channel 460. The coverage area included all or parts of Erie, Niagara, Genesee, Wyoming, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany counties.

Kane reminds harness fans that race replays are available on the OTB website (www.westernotb.com <http://www.westernotb.com>) and OTB provides telephone betting through its Dial-A-Bet service. Patrons may phone 1-800-724-4000 to establish an account.

Batavia Downs Casino is owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. In addition to being America’s oldest lighted harness track, the facility at 8315 Park Road is home to over 600 of the most popular slots and Grandstands Bar & Grille.

October 6, 2010 - 1:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, Western Regional OTB.

An attempt to fill a long-vacant executive position at Western Regional OTB with a Monroe County politician with some baggage is meeting resistance locally.

Genesee County's representative on the OTB board, Richard Siebert, told the Democrat & Chronicle that Monroe County officials are trying to make the appointment without going through proper procedures.

James Smith is a former deputy executive for Monroe County who was charged -- and later acquitted -- of misdemeanors related to alleged misuse of county workers for non-county work.

Smith's nomination is supported by Dennis Bassett, who is Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy’s appointee to the board.

According to Siebert, there's been no interview process and no other candidates considered.

One subcommittee vote was a tie, effectively killing Smith's application.

However, Bassett is now reportedly trying to bring a vote on Smith to the entire board.

A meeting with this single item on the agenda is scheduled for Oct. 11.

From the D&C:

Siebert said Smith supporters are trying to push the appointment through without advertising the job. Smith lacks gaming experience and, while Smith was acquitted of criminal charges, the accusations against him did raise questions about his managerial work, Siebert said.

“They’re ramming it down our throats,” Siebert said.

September 30, 2010 - 11:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

mug-jack_flannigan.jpgA popular Batavia Downs driver is expected to return to action in about a week after getting thrown from his seat in the clubhouse turn during a race last night and suffering a concussion.

Veteran Jack Flanigen, who missed the entire 2008 season because of an injury, came into the season with 188 career wins.

Driving Anabelle Jo, the 44-year-old reinsman said he wasn't really sure what happened.

“I sent her out of there and she just collapsed and we went down.”

Flanigen was transported to United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia where he received stitches for a facial cut.

Full press release after the jump:

September 28, 2010 - 10:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press Release:

Batavia, NY --- The comeback Kid, Two Twentytwo, made it look easy when he notched his fourth win of the summer-fall meet in the $9,000 Preferred Handicap, Saturday night (Aug-25), at Batavia Downs Casino.

Leaving from post-position four with new pilot Jack Flanigen in the sulky, the 6-year-old chestnut son of Blissful Hall put up all the numbers, :27.4-:56.4-125.3 en route to a much the best two-length score in 1:53.4.

Pro Kid (Ray Fisher, Jr.), leaving from then rail got away second and finished second while former Downs track record holder Michael Scores (Tom Agosti), got away third and finished third.

“He’s a great horse to drive,” reinsman Jack Flanigen commented. “When I asked him for speed he exploded, I felt like I could have gone a lot more if I needed too.”

Two Twentytwo ($2.60) is owned by Dominic Colarusso, Jr. and trained by Richie Mays. Saturday nights win was his 8th of season in only 14 starts; he’s earned over $220,000 lifetime.

Two Twentytwo was a multiple Stakes winning freshman pacer before an injury sidelined him for more than a year.

Kevin Cummings is quickly approaching milestone win 2,000. The 40-year-old Cummings begins the new race week with 1989 career wins. The red-hot catch driver has driven home 11 winners the last four racing nights.

The 64th season of live harness racing at America’s oldest lighted harness track resumes on Tuesday. Post time is 6:40pm.

September 27, 2010 - 2:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Ken “Doc” Holliday drove the 5,000th winner of his career on Wednesday night (Sept. 22) when he guided CC Dreamer to a nose victory in race 12 at Batavia Downs Casino.
 
Holliday’s special evening started early in the program when he set a new track record for older mares with Artistry In Rhythm in the featured $9,000 Mares Open.
 
The 46-year-old Holliday began his driving career in 1982 when he won three times in 46 starts. His best season came in 1998 when he made 466 winner's circle visits. His drives have earned over $20 million in purses throughout his career.
 
Holliday’s milestone win was decided after a long photo finish. He was surrounded by family and friends in the winner's circle.
 
“It’s a great accomplishment,” Holliday said. “I was hoping to hit it quicker but I’ve been banged up the last couple years. I’m happy it came with one of the horses my wife trains. It also helps to have a great set of owners.”
 
Career win 4,999 came in the very first race with the razor-sharp mare Artistry In Rhythm.
 
The 8-year-old Real Artist-Romantic Music distaffer would establish the new mark when she paced to a powerful 1:54 score, lowering the previous record of 1:54.4 set in 2005 by Magic Sugar and equaled by Rakalees N in 2008.
 
Heavy favorite Allamerican Tout was sent right to the front by Kevin Cummings, rolling along to fractions of :27.3, :56.4 and 1:25. But “Doc” Holliday was able to make another house call, as Artistry In Rhythm paced right on by down the stretch to pull the 28-1 upset for trainer Sherri Holliday and owner Betty Tauber.
 
The win puts Artistry In Rhythm just shy of $70,000 in seasonal earnings; she's approaching $300,000 in lifetime earnings.
 
“We got down to the half quick and I got a really good trip, she’s just a really good mare, Sherri’s done a great good job with her. I’m happy we set the record with one of Mrs. Tauber's horses,” Holliday commented about the new track record holder.

September 27, 2010 - 2:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Here's a news release from Todd Haight at Batavia Downs.

"The Comeback Kid" -- Two Twentytwo --  made it look easy when he notched his fourth win of the summer-fall meet in the $9,000 Preferred Handicap, Saturday night (Sept. 25), at Batavia Downs Casino.

Leaving from post-position four with new pilot Jack Flanigen in the sulky, the 6-year-old chestnut son of Blissful Hall put up all the numbers, :27.4-:56.4-125.3 en route to a much the best two-length score in 1:53.4.

Pro Kid (Ray Fisher Jr.), leaving from then rail got away second and finished second while former Down' track-record holder Michael Scores (Tom Agosti), got away third and finished third.

“He’s a great horse to drive,” reinsman Flanigen commented. “When I asked him for speed he exploded, I felt like I could have gone a lot more if I needed to.”

Two Twentytwo ($2.60) is owned by Dominic Colarusso Jr. and trained by Richie Mays. Saturday nights win was his 8th of season in only 14 starts; he’s earned over $220,000 lifetime.

Two Twentytwo was a multiple Stakes winning freshman pacer before an injury sidelined him for more than a year.

In other harness racing news, Kevin Cummings is quickly approaching milestone win 2,000. The 40-year-old Cummings begins the new race week with 1,989 career wins. The red-hot catch driver has driven home 11 winners the last four racing nights.

The 64th season of live harness racing at America’s oldest lighted harness track resumes on Tuesday. Post time is 6:40 p.m.

September 27, 2010 - 1:53pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Here's a news release from Todd Haight at Batavia Downs Casino.

Scorpion Moon made his return to Batavia Downs Casino a winning one when he scored a hard-fought victory in the featured $9,000 Preferred trot, Friday night (Sept. 24), at Batavia Downs Casino.
 
Sent off as a prohibitive 1-2 betting favorite, Scorpion Moon, with Josh Marks in town to drive left from his assigned outside post, was able to find the pylons getting away third.
 
Rounding the clubhouse turn on the payoff half, Marks pulled the classy son of Armbro Scorpion first over and they were quickly up to challenge the front running Hello Carlo and Downs' dashing leading reinsman Jack Flanigen.
 
Around the final turn the weekly trotting feature became a match race as Hello Carlo and Scorpion Moon separated themselves from the rest of the field.
 
Down the lane Hello Carlo was gamely digging in but a relentless Scorpion Moon was able to edge on by late to score his 14th win of the season, by a half-length, in 1:57.4. It was 6-lengths back to the third place finisher Fifty Two Finn.
 
The win put the 9-year-old gelding over the $211,000 mark in seasonal earnings for owners Andrew Herzog and Tracy Brainard, who also trains.
 
Stephen Oldford wins Billings
The Billings amateur driving series returned to America’s oldest lighted harness racetrack on Friday night and it Steve “You’re Never Too” Oldford who guided Another Traveller to victory.
 
Oldford sent Another Traveller right to the lead when the gates opened and they never had an anxious moment, scoring by 6-lengths over Guest Host with Anthony “the Capo” Verruso, while Rock Hard Ten with “Gentleman Jamie” Marra wound up a fast-closing third.
 
Two Billings trots are slated as non-wagering events at Vernon Downs on Saturday night and will be contested at 6:10 p.m. prior to the betting card getting under way.
 
Racing resumes on Saturday night post time is 6:40pm. The Downs will simulcast the rich New York Night of Champions from Yonkers Raceway. Yonkers programs will be free.
 
Batavia Downs is currently racing Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights. The 64th racing season concludes on Dec. 4. For more information please visit <http://www.bataviadownscasino.com/>.

September 19, 2010 - 2:21pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Here's a news release from Todd Haight at Batavia Downs.

Congratulations to Florence Ferrando, of Churchville, the winner of the Sept. 18 Batavia Downs Casino $1,000 Handicapping Contest.

She bested 312 other contestants with a top score of 47 points to claim the $500 top prize.

Frank Camiola, of East Rochester, took home $250 for finishing second via the tiebreaker over Dan Dickens, of Batavia. Each finished with 46 points but Camiola’s tiebreaker total of $92.40 was well ahead of Dickens, who received $125.

Six contestants finished with 44 points. Once again the tiebreaker -- $2 to win on every winner selected -- helped vault Jeff Grabowski into the fourth place and William Park into fifth. Grabowski’s tiebreaker total of $32.30 was good enough to win $75 while Park’s $27.30 tiebreaker total earned him $50.

All prize money can be picked up beginning at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 22 at Players Club. The final free handicapping contest of the season takes place Oct. 9.

September 19, 2010 - 2:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Here's a news release from Todd Haight at Batavia Downs.

The 2010 New York Sire Stakes season ended with a bang on Saturday night with a pair of track records set and another impressive appearance by Jezzy, now a perfect 10 for 10 lifetime.

The evening featured four divisions of 3-year-old colt and gelding trotters and three events for 2-year-old trotting fillies. More than $275,000 in stakes money was offered.

The Credit Winner colt, Stimulus, started the fireworks when he trotted to a new track record for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings in the very first race.

Leaving from the rail, Stimulus with Marcus Johansson in the bike, sat the two-hole until the top of the stretch and roared out of the pocket to a 1:57.3 score, lowering Russell Hill’s record, set last season, by a fifth of a second.

Stimulus is owned by the contingent of Christina Takter, John Fielding and Falkbolagen Ab. Jimmy Takter is the conditioner.

However Stimulus’s name didn’t stay in the record books long, as another son of Credit Winner, Whata Winner, would annihilate that standard later in the evening.

Leaving from the rail with Hall of Famer Jim Doherty in the sulky, Whata Winner was sent right to the front and never looked back, turning back heavily favored Blacktuxwhitesox’s (Jeff Gregory) stretch bid to notch his name in the record books with a 1:56.2 clocking.

His time was just two-fifths of a second off Earl’s all-age record. The fractions were :28-:58-1:26.2. Whata Winner is trained and co-owned by Jim Doherty along with Thomas Dillon and Terrax, Inc. Whata Winner scored his eight win of the campaign and raised his 2010 earnings to more $247,000.

The much heralded trotting sensation Jezzy had no problem remaining unbeaten heading to next Saturday's Yonkers Night of Champion finals for 2-year-old trotting fillies when she cruised to the best 6-1/2 length score in 2:03 for trainer/driver Ray Schnittker. Not that she needed any help, but five early breakers made her appearance basically a training mile.

Ray Schnittker, Jerry Silva, Jeffrey Gural and Theodore Gewertz own the Credit Winner-Ladylind freshman. Gural’s Little E farm bred Jezzy who has earned over $222,000 for her connections.

Dreamy Dawn become the new track record holder for 2-year-old trotting fillies at the Downs when she easily lowered Princess Maddie’s (2:00.4) record by almost two seconds.

Sent right to the top from post-two by reinsman Jeff Gregory, Dreamy Dawn put up all the numbers en route to 4-1/2 length, 1:59 victory to establish the mark. The fractions were :29-:59-1:29. The quickly improving Dream Vacation - Divine Eos juvenile is owned/trained and was bred by Ed Lohmeyer.

“What a fantastic New York Sire Stakes season we’ve had,” Mike Kane, vice president of Live Racing said. “We had six track records set and the fans came out to watch. Our on-track handle was up 16 percent tonight thanks to a great racing card.”
 
The final NYSS late closers of the season take place when racing resumes on Tuesday night. Two-year-old colt and gelding trotters compete in four divisions worth $13,200 each. Two of the late closers will be raced as non-wagering events starting at 6 p.m.
 
Veteran reinsman Ken Holliday starts the new race week just two wins shy of career milestone 5,000. Post time for the first of 12 is 6:40 p.m.

September 12, 2010 - 10:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Downs, sports, education, harness racing.

downsscholar09aa.jpg

A Batavia High student has $3,000 more toward her college education after driving a harness racehorse to victory Saturday night at Batavia Downs.

Kaley Falkowski, paired with professional driver Jim Mulcahy, bested four other high school students racing in Batavia Downs first-ever scholarship challenge. A total of $7,500 was awarded to the students.

Taking second was Eric Harrower (Batavia High School) with Ron Beback Jr., earning $2,000. Tyler Pingrey (Notre Dame High School) with Jim Graham earned a $1,200. Mike Norway (Oakfield-Alabama High School) with Michael Baumeister finished fourth and earned an $800 scholarship, while Emily Sallome (Batavia High School) and Mike Pokornowski finished fifth and will receive a $500 scholarship.

downsscholar10a.jpg

More pictures related to the scholarship race and other scenes on Saturday at Batavia Downs after the jump:

September 9, 2010 - 12:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press Release:

(Batavia NY) --- Most race cards for the remainder of the 2010 Batavia Downs Casino harness meet will now be available to television viewers in both the Rochester and Buffalo regions, it was announced today by Michael D Kane, Vice President, Operations and Live Racing.

In the Rochester area, races will continue to be featured on Channel 98 on Time-Warner’s basic digital package. The coverage area includes all or parts of Genesee, Orleans, Monroe, Livingston, Wayne, Ontario, Seneca, Yates and Steuben Counties.

In the Buffalo area, racing will be carried on Channel 114 on Time-Warner (Channel 111 in Olean), WGRZ Digital Channel 2-2 and Verizon Fios Channel 460. The coverage area includes all or parts of Erie, Niagara, Genesee, Wyoming, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany Counties.

Nightly race programming will begin at 6:30 p.m. and complete at about 10:00 p.m., according to Kane. Racing analyst Todd Haight returns for his 8th year and track announcer Joe Zambito for his 6th as co-hosts of the simulcast show.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for Batavia Downs to showcase its live racing product to our two largest markets. It’s a nice attraction for new customers and provides our long-time racing fans with the nightly races in the comfort of their homes,” Kane said.

Kane reminds harness fans that OTB provides telephone betting through its Dial-A-Bet service. Patrons may phone 1-800-724-4000 to establish an account.

Batavia Downs Casino is owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. In addition to being America’s Oldest Lighted Harness Track, the facility at 8315 Park Road is home to over 600 of the most popular slots and Grandstands Bar & Grille.

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