Online News. Community Views.

>> Download <<
The Batavian Mobile
Droid | iPhone

Recent comments

Community Sponsors

harness racing

September 26, 2016 - 2:02pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

In the featured $10,000 Open pace at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 24), the only race was for second as the heavily favored invader, Scott Rocks led at all stations en route to registering the fastest pacing mile of the year at the Genesee County oval.

John Cummings Jr. left with Scott Rocks and after easing him through a brutally sunlit first turn, got his horse in gear on the back straight and took the lead by the quarter in :27.4. As soon as he crossed over to the pylons, Cummings popped the plugs and took a reclined posture in the bike as he became a passenger for the rest of his ride.

Scott Rocks was up by one and one-half lengths at the half in :56.2 and by two at three-quarters in 1:23.4. With the rest of the field scrambling to keep up at that point, the leader opened up three lengths under mild urging from Cummings and won wrapped-up in 1:52.

China Dream (Shawn Gray) closed strong to catch second and Heaven Rocks (Kevin Cummings), who followed the winner the entire mile, hung on for third.

It was the ninth win of the year, including three straight most recently for Scott Rocks ($2.50) and the purse increased his 2016 bank to $133,374 for owners Susan Oakes and Chuck Pompey. The 6-year-old gelded son of Rocknroll Hanover is trained by Chris Oakes.

John Cummings Jr. had a driving grand slam on Saturday winning with Scott Rocks ($2.50, 1:52), Keystone Dalton ($3.10, 1:55), Foreign Officer ($4.30, 1:54.1) and Untouchable One ($3.40, 1:56).

Drew Monti had a driving triple while Ray Fisher Jr. doubled up. 

Trainer JD Perrin conditioned three winning horses on the night.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 28) with the first post at 6:15.

September 24, 2016 - 2:46pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of Snapshot Springs with driver Drew Monti.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Fresh off a solid win in Open II company last week, Snapshot Springs moved to the top class for resident trotters and took a new lifetime mark in winning the $10,500 Open at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 23).

With three horses leaving off the gate, it took until the quarter for the favored Kahoku (Kevin Cummings) to clear in :28.1. He then proceeded to lead the pack in single-file order to the half in :57.4. At that station, Snapshot Springs (Drew Monti) pulled first-over from fourth and motored up on the outside.

Up the backside, Snapshot Springs pulled even with Kahoku and at that point, Monti popped the plugs before they hit the three-quarters in 1:27.1. From there he cleared and opened up a two-length lead around the last turn. Then with mild urging from Monti down the lane, Snapshot Springs coasted home to a fairly easy two-length win in 1:57.

It was the seventh win of the year for Snapshot Springs ($8.40) and it enriched his 2016 earnings to $41,085 for owner/trainer Allan McCarty.

Bob Davis won both $5,000 divisions of the C.K.G. Billings races. In the trotting leg he scored a wire to wire win with V I P ($15.80) and in the pacing division he went from worst to first with Helena’s Hope ($7).

John Cummings Jr. had a driving triple while Drew Monti and Shawn Gray scored doubles. Trainers Edgar Clarke and Jeff Amann both sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 24) with a 6:15 post time.

September 23, 2016 - 1:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

When racing resumes at Batavia Downs tonight (Sept. 23), the early Pick-5 pool will be guaranteed at $2,500. The early Pick-5 wager runs from race one through race five and is a 50-cent base wager.

America’s oldest lighted harness racetrack currently races every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night with post time for the first race set at 6:15. The 2016 season continues through Dec. 10.

 
September 22, 2016 - 3:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.
(Photo of Susie's Delight with driver Ray Fisher Jr.)
 
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
 
Susie's Delight proved patience is a virtue as she laid in wait before pouncing on her foes in the $9,500 mares Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 21).
 
Kaitlyn Akeeper (Jim Morrill Jr.) set the pace as the heavy post time favorite All Charged Up (John Macdonald) couldn't get the front and didn't find a hole. That was the start of a long journey for her as she was parked the rest of the way. So with Memumsnotnice (Kevin Cummings) sitting second and All Charged Up hung out like laundry, Kaitlyn Akeeper cut fractions of :27.1, :56.3 and 1:25.2.
 
At three-quarters, All Charged Up was making her way to the rear and that freed Susie's Delight (Ray Fisher Jr.) from her encumbered position in fourth and she began a run up to the leader. Coming out of the turn, Susie's Delight drew even with Kaitlyn Akeeper and the mares battled into the stretch. Fisher began bouncing in the bike like he was sitting on a trampoline, urging his mare ahead. And ahead she forged to a half-length victory in 1:54.2. 
 
It was the fourth win of the year for the 6-year-old daughter of Bettor's Delight ($13) and the time of 1:54.2 was a new seasonal mark for the winner. Susie's Delight is owned by the Swift Racing Stable and trained by Ryan Swift. 
 
Drew Monti, Dave McNeight III and Ray Fisher Jr. all scored driving triples on the night while John Mungillo, Bradley Jackson and Dave McNeight Jr. conditioned two winners apiece. 
 
Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 23) with post time for the first race set at 6:15.
September 18, 2016 - 2:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in harness racing, sports, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of China Dream.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Track conditions were sloppy at best after torrential downpours swept through Genesee County, but China Dream didn’t seem to mind the mud as he came first-over and put in a gutsy effort while winning the $10,000 Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 17).

From the pylons, Heaven Rocks (Kevin Cummings) took the lead by default as no one else in the field left. From there Cummings proceeded to cut pedestrian fractions for the class of :29.1 to the quarter and :59.1 to the half with his competitors following in post position order. 

Shortly past that station, China Dream (Shawn Gray) pulled first-up and drew alongside Heaven Rocks. The two matched strides up the backside and around the last turn. At the head of the lane, China Dream wore down Heaven Rocks, but met another challenge from Foreign Officer (John Cummings Jr.) who had tipped three wide and was driving. But China Dream was the better horse this night and held all comers at bay to win by length in 1:56.2.

It was the ninth win of the year for China Dream ($10.80) and it raised his annual income to $65,055 for owners Jack and Maria Rice. China Dream is trained by Maria Rice.

Shawn Gray posted four driving victories on the night while Ray Fisher Jr. won two. Trainers Maria Rice, Angelo Nappo and Richard Lareau all sent two winners postward.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Monday afternoon at 4:30 for the final twilight card of the year.

September 17, 2016 - 12:33pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The last time BZ Glide visited the winner’s circle was on May 27 of this year, but that absence was quelled when he got up late to win the $10,000 Open trotting feature at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 16).

As the race got underway, habitual leaver Kahoku (Kevin Cummings) took a stay-at-home approach and let Studio City (Dave McNeight III), Noble Legend (Jack Flanigen) and Serendipitious (Ray Fisher Jr.) all go for the top. Those three battled three-wide to the quarter in :27.4 before Noble Legend finally cleared and then Serendipitious overtook from him. But the action was far from over before they reached the half as Studio City pulled first over with Kahoku shadowing the move.

The field was in two rows at three-quarters in 1:27.3 when Cummings pulled Kahoku three-high around the far turn. Not to be outdone, Mike Caprio pulled BZ Glide from the back of the pack and swung four-wide at the head of the lane. With horses coming from everywhere, four had a shot in mid-stretch. But it was BZ Glide who brushed the best to win by a neck in 1:58.1.

It was the second win of the year for BZ Glide ($4.30) who is just rounding into form after being off two months over the summer. So far in 2016, he has earned $18,625 for owner Caprio Stable LLC. BZ Glide is trained by Alana Caprio.

The Downs leading driver, Kevin Cummings and Drew Monti both had triples on the card while Mike Caprio checked in with two winners.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 17) with the first post set at 6:15.

September 16, 2016 - 2:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs 

Batavia, NY---The draw for Wednesday (Sept. 21) which was originally scheduled for today (Sept. 16) has been postponed until Saturday morning (Sept. 17).

The box remains open for all classes until tomorrow at 9 a.m. and if you have already entered, you do not need to re-enter.

If you have any questions, please contact the race office at 585-344-6161.

September 15, 2016 - 12:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

(Zack’s Zoomer with driver Marcus Miller.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings who came to Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 14) to compete in the $107,000 New York Sires Stakes (NYSS) put on quite a show, but none more than Zack’s Zoomer, who set a new track record for age, gender and gait.

Zack’s Zoomer (Deweycheatumnhowe-Passageway) had finished second to division leaders Devious Man and Money Macintosh racing from off the pace his last two starts, but tonight driver Marcus Miller took no prisoners and sent Zack’s Zoomer right to the front along with Neon Lights (Chris Lems) and Money Macintosh (Andy Miller) in the first $53,500 division. As they headed into the first turn, favorite Money Macintosh made a break and left Zack’s Zoomer to dictate the fractions with Neon Lights parked out right next to him.

The two colts continued to battle; one in, one out, through fractions of :29, :58.2 and 1:28.4 before Neon Lights tired and Zack’s Zoomer found additional momentum. Rounding the final turn, Marcus Miller was just line driving his horse as they sped away and opened up a three length lead by mid-stretch. At the wire, Zack’s Zoomer was a wrapped-up winner in 1:58.1 by a comfortable two-lengths.  

The time of 1:58.1 was a new lifetime mark for Zack’s Zoomer ($5.40) as well as a new track record for 2-year-old trotting colts at Batavia Downs. The old record of 1:58.4 was set by Dejarmbro in 2010.

“He has been drawing poorly, but he’s just been getting better and better. So when he got the rail, this is pretty much what I had planned tonight” said Marcus Miller. “I think he’s a very nice horse.”

This was also the second track record Marcus Miller has set at Batavia Downs in just over a week. On Saturday (Sept. 3), Miller drove Pointomygranson to a five-length, 1:53.2 win to set a new standard for 2-year-old pacing geldings.

This win was the second in six starts for Zack’s Zoomer and it pushed his earnings for the year to $71,265. The 50 points earned for the win, moved him up to fifth in the NYSS standings (155) and solidified his spot in the $1.8 million Night of Champions at Yonkers Raceway on Saturday (Sept. 24). 

Zack’s Zoomer is owned by Ervin Miller Stable Inc. and Harvey Elsman and is trained by Erv Miller.

In the first $53,500 split, Devious Man (Credit Winner-Miss Garland) displayed why he was sent off 2-5 as he overpowered the field from post six.

Stick With Me Kid (Chris Lems), Volare (Mark Macdonald) and Devious Man (Andy Miller) all left the gate. Volare tucked in second behind the front running Stick With Me Kid while Devious Man floated in fourth. Just past the eighth pole, Stick With Me Kid made a break and simultaneously, Devious Man pulled and proceeded towards the front. That march was completed by the top of the far turn and from there, he took total control.

(Devious Man with driver Andy Miller.)

Devious Man led the field to the half in 1:01.1 and then proceeded to close out the race. He opened up and immediate three-length lead and with Miller sitting chilly, hit the three-quarters in 1:31 before trotting home in :28.4 to be a gapped winner in 1:59.4.

“I was a little worried about the six hole, but he just cruised around there; it didn’t really seem to matter,” Andy Miller said. “After that horse made a break and he cleared the front, he was pretty much on his own from there.”

It was the fifth win of the year for Devious Man ($2.90) and the fourth in a row during his current streak. The purse enhanced his coffers to $167,733, making him the richest 2-year-old trotting colt in the NYSS this year. The 50 points gained for the win also made him the highest point-earner (287) for his category.

Devious Man, who is a three-quarter brother to 2005 Hambletonian winner Vivid Photo, is owned by Story Inc. and is trained by Julie Miller.

There were also three divisions of the $15,000 Excelsior A series on the card.

The first $15,000 division was won by American Cheque (Conway Hall-Cheque Lavec) who was driven by John Campbell in 2:00.3. American Cheque ($3.30) is trained by Linda Toscano for owner Michael Keeling.

The second $15,000 leg went to Top Flight Angel (Archangel-Top Photo) who was driven by John Cummings Jr. in 1:58.4. Top Flight Angel ($8.60) is trained by Megan Wilson for Legendary Standardbred Farm.

The final $15,000 split was won by Barn Winner (Credit Winner-Hallmarker) who was driven by Jim Morrill Jr. Barn Winner ($4.50) is trained by Steve Pratt who also owns him along with Nancy Pratt and the Out In The Country Stable.

Several horsemen had outstanding performances on Wednesday. John Cummings Jr. scored a driving triple while John Campbell, Marcus Miller and Jim Morrill Jr. all had doubles. Trainers Erv Miller and Jim Graham each sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure for portraits.

September 13, 2016 - 2:18pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of Devious Man with unidentified driver.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

As the 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings mark the final New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) stop of the year at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 14), some of the entrants will be looking to solidify their spot in the $1.8 million Night of Champions at Yonkers Raceway on Saturday (Sept. 24). But stablemates Devious Man and Money Macintosh from the Julie Miller stable have already advanced as the top two point-earners in the series and can concentrate solely on the $107,000 in purse money available this week.

Devious Man (Credit Winner-Miss Garland) has won three consecutive NYSS events after making a break in the $294,450 Peter Haughton Memorial at the Meadowlands on August 6. He won in the mud at both Yonkers Raceway and Tioga Downs, the latter setting his lifetime mark of 1:55.3. And then the following week won again back at Yonkers in 1:58.3. He’s a very handy horse winning from both the front end and from behind.

In all, Devious Man has four wins this year, all in NYSS action and $140,983 in earnings. $125,397 of that total was made in the NYSS and makes him the highest money earner for his age, gait and gender. He is also the second highest point-earner (237) for his category.

Andy Miller will make an infrequent stop at the Genesee County oval to drive Devious Man for his wife Julie Miller from post 6 and has been made the prohibitive morning line favorite at 1-1 in the first $53,500 division.

Stick With Me Kid (Deweycheatumnhowe-Chelsea Hall) has only one win to his credit this year, but it was an impressive outing in the NYSS at Vernon Downs on July 21. He pulled from off the pace and trotted away to victory in 1:56.2, which was his career best. Chris Lems sat behind him for that start and trainer George Ducharme has him up again here.

Looking to add to his $64,051 in earnings and points to his total for the final, Stick With Me Kid has drawn post one, is the second choice at 7-2 and looks to be the stiffest competition for the favorite.

In the second $53,500 split, Julie Miller’s Money Macintosh (Credit Winner-Apple Plush) is almost a mirror image of Devious Man. He is coming in off two straight wins at Tioga and Yonkers and has four victories on the year, all in NYSS races. His lifetime mark of 1:56.2 was taken at Tioga Downs and he hasn’t missed the board all year.

Money Macintosh has won $122,829 in 2016, all of which was made in NYSS races. That puts him second in that category behind Devious Man, although he tops the list for points earned (262) in his category.

Andy Miller will also team Money Macintosh from post six and has been made the early choice at 2-1.

Such An Angel (Credit Winner-Michelle’s Angel) sits third in points for the final and will no doubt use this start as a tune up. After winning three-straight NYSS events at Vernon Downs, Saratoga Raceway and Yonkers, Such An Angel encountered some road trouble in his last two and finished off the board. With an inside draw and his gate speed, this is a good spot for the colt to rebound.

Trainer Paul Kelley again has the services of Hall of Fame driver John Campbell and will see Such An Angel depart from post three at 5-2.

Zack’s Zoomer (Deweycheatumnhowe-Passageway) currently sits seventh in points and needs a good outing to seal the deal. Although he has only won one NYSS event this year, he has finished a solid second in his last two outings from post four and looks to be rounding into form at just the right time.

Marcus Miller will steer Zack’s Zoomer for trainer Erv Miller and leave from post one at 3-1.

There are also three $15,000 divisions of the Excel A series on the card that is slated to begin at 6:15 p.m.

September 12, 2016 - 12:52pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, batavia.

(Milky Way on the rail, pulling ahead, with driver Jim Morrill Jr.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Horses trained by Tracy Brainard and driven by Jim Morrill Jr. have been tough to beat over the years and Saturday night (Sept. 10) at Batavia Downs was no exception. That dynamic duo swept both 3-year-old pacing filly divisions of the New York Sires Stakes and claimed the winner’s share of $119,300 in purses.

In the first $60,200 division, Milky Way Rae (American Ideal-Aurora Borealus) was used early and late before grinding out a victory down the lane.

Milky Way Rae left for the lead but was pursued from the outside by American Ivy (Dan Daley) through a :27.3 quarter. By the three-eighths America Ivy had taken a seat third allowing the leader a breather and a :56 half. But before Milky Way Rae could get too comfortable, No Clouds Bluechip (Kevin Cummings) had pulled from fourth with Dime A Dance (Drew Monti) right behind her.

As the trio paced by three-quarters in 1:25, No Clouds Bluechip stalled and Dime A Dance went three-wide around her in the last turn. Starting with a two-length deficit at the top of the stretch, Dime A Dance put on a ferocious drive and took it to the leader, but Milky Way Rae fended off the challenge to win by a nose in 1:54.4.

“The race shaped up good for her because she likes to rock on the front” said Morrill. “I thought she could go in 1:52 tonight on this track but it didn’t come to that.”

It was the fifth win of the year for Milky Way Rae ($13.20) and it boosted her 2016 earnings to $86,674 for owner Fortunate One LLC.

 

(Wishy Washy Girl (#5) with driver Jim Morrill Jr.)

The second $59,100 leg saw Wishy Washy Girl (Roll With Joe-Wish All you Want) trip-out for the win and give the Morrill/Brainard team their second winner's circle presentation.

Wishy Washy Girl left and dropped in second behind Time On My Hands (Ray Fisher Jr.) who was rolling from the pylons. But despite the two being ahead of the field by a good ten lengths, Morrill pulled and tried to go to the front, cutting the quarter in :27. However Fisher would have none of that and he pushed his filly on and made Morrill see-saw his back into the hole.

Between the half in :55.2 and three-quarters in 1:24.4, Art Critic (Drew Monti) pulled and drew alongside Wishy Washy Girl. At the same time, Fisher was highly animated in urging on the front-running Time On My Hands who was clearly running out of gas. This locked in Wishy Washy Girl who was raging with pace until the top of the lane. When the passing lane finally opened up, Morrill popped Wishy Washy Girl through the opening and sped to an instant two-length lead and won in 1:54.4.

“She was good but she would have been a lot better if they went 1:22 to three-quarters” Morrill explained. “That’s why I came out of the two-hole at the quarter, because when they go too slow she’s tough to hold. She was crawling over that horse around the last turn; she was very good.”

The win gave Wishy Washy Girl three for the year and the purse enriched her bank account to $82,328 for owners Michael Cimaglio and Stephen Demeter.

There were also two divisions of the $15,000 Excelsior A series on the card.

Ghost Runner (Art Major-Spirit Of The West) was an easy wire to wire winner in 1:54.1 for Jim Morrill Jr. and trainer Erv Miller. Ghost runner ($2.30) is owned by Dr. Scott Leaf, Deborah Mackenzie, Gerald Fielding and Tom Jackson.

The Morrill/Miller combo also took the second division with Rolling Going Gone (Roll With Joe-Long Gone) in 1:58, and once again wire to wire. Rolling Going Gone ($2.30) is owned by Ross Bonafield.

Driver Jim Morrill Jr. ended the night winning five races.

September 10, 2016 - 1:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

(Photo of Kahoku with driver Kevin Cummings.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

In Hawaiian, Kahoku means “star” and Friday night (Sept. 9) at Batavia Downs, Kahoku ($4.30) lived up to his name as he shown bright on the front end in the $10,500 Open trotting feature.

Driver Kevin Cummings left from post four with Kahoku and out-tussled Noble Legend (Jack Flanigen) for the lead past the quarter timed in :28.3. That would be the last lead change of the race. Kahoku trotted with a gapped lead and went to the half in :59.2 and three-quarters in 1:28.3. With the field unable to catch him up to that point, Kahoku strode away to an easy two-length victory in 1:58. 

Noble Legend followed him to the wire for second and B Z Glide (Mike Caprio) closed the best for show.

It was the tenth win in 28 starts for Kahoku and it bumped his earnings up to $59,358 for the year. The 8-year-old altered son of SJ’s Caviar is owned by Colleen Girdlestone and Michael Gentner and is trained by Mark Laidlaw.

In the co-featured $8,500 Open II trot, The Bronx Bumper ($7.60) stepped up from the claiming ranks to dominate some top-flight condition horses when he came from off the pace to win in 1:58.3. Dave McNeight III drove the winner to his fourth win of the year for trainer Gerry Sarama and owner Mike Torcello.

Three drivers won 90 percent of the card on Friday as Kevin Cummings, John Cummings Jr. and Dave McNeight III all scored driving triples.

Racing resumes on Saturday night (Sept. 10) at Batavia Downs with the first post set for 6:15.

September 9, 2016 - 2:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

(Photo of No Clouds Bluechip; driver unidentified.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The seventh of eight sessions of the New York Sires Stakes (NYSS) stops at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 10) and this week it will be the 3-year-old pacing fillies who will participate in two divisions, going for $119,300 in available purses.

This will be the last stop for the second-year distaff side-wheelers who are trying to position themselves for the NYSS Night of Champions finals at Yonkers Raceway on September 24.

The first $60,200 division features No Clouds Bluechip (Roll With Joe-B J’s Sunshine) who comes in fresh off a big win in the $239,225 Empire Breeders Classic (EBC) at Tioga Downs. After winning her elimination in 1:53 wire to wire, No Clouds Bluechip came from off the pace in the final to annihilate her competition, winning in 1:50.1 by five lengths.

No Clouds Bluechip is a four-time winner this year and has amassed $233,208 in earnings for her efforts and currently sits sixth in points for the final.

Trainer John Berger has tabbed Batavia’s leading driver, Kevin Cummings to steer and has been named the 2-1 morning line favorite from post two.

The race’s second choice, Dime A Dance (Roll With Joe-Hat Dance Hanover) raced at Batavia Downs on one other occasion. Just short of a year ago, the filly scorched the Genesee County oval in 1:52.4 and set a new track and world record for 2-year-old pacing fillies over a half-mile track.

This year, Dime A Dance has matched her wins from 2015 but not her mark or earnings. Most recently she won two straight NYSS events before qualifying for the EBC final at Tioga. Unfortunately in that race, she drew post nine and made an untimely break at the quarter and was never in contention after that.

Dime A Dance has four wins on the year and $166,210 in the bank. She is also the top point-earning filly in her division and is a lock for the NYSS final.

Dime A Dance drew post five and has been made 7-2 on the early line. Trainer Ron Burke has called upon Drew Monti to sit in the bike for this event.

In the second $59,100 split, Time On My Hands (American Ideal-Bewitching Jewell) looks like the one to beat on the strength of her body of work. She’s a three-time NYSS winner and took her lifetime mark of 1:53.2 in a leg at Saratoga Raceway.

Her most recent outing was in the $109,050 Lady Maud at Yonkers where she got away last and was chasing a :56.2 closing half. She did finish fifth and paced home in a snappy :27.4 final quarter.

In 2016, Time On My Hands has four wins and $146,893 in assets. She is currently second in points and has qualified for the final as well.

Time On My Hands has drawn post one and will team with Ray Fisher Jr. for trainer Chris Ryder.

Wishy Washy Girl (Roll With Joe-Wish All You Want) cut blazing fractions in the EBC but paid the price in the end. She finished sixth, but it was not unexpected with a 1:21.3 three-quarters. Prior to that under more moderate rating, she has been a handy filly since entering the Brainard stable.

Although her lifetime mark is 1:54.1 at Pocono Downs, she just missed going wire to wire in 1:51.3 in the EBC elimination two starts back where she finished third by a half-length.

Wishy Washy Girl has won two races this year but neither were in Sire Stake action.

Jim Morrill Jr. picks up the lines for the fourth straight time behind Wishy Washy Girl as assigned by trainer Tracy Brainard and the pair will depart from post five listed at 7-2.

There are also two divisions of the $15,000 Excelsior Series A races on the card that will go postward at 6:15 p.m.

September 8, 2016 - 4:21pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of All Charged Up and her trainer/driver John MacDonald.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Vernon Downs invaders All Charged Up and her trainer/driver John MacDonald have made Batavia Downs their second home now that they’ve won their second straight $10,000 fillies and mares Open pace on Wednesday night (Sept. 7).

MacDonald fired right to the front when the gate released the field and All Charged Up took complete control of the race. With the field in single file behind her and no one pulling the right line, MacDonald was on top grabbing both as he slowed the pace to 1:00.1 at the half. From there the race was over.

The Filly Princess (Kevin Cummings) eventually did come first over past the half and brought My Tallia Ideal (Dave McNeight III) with her in tow. They advanced towards the leader who had sped the third panel up to :28.1, but All Charged Up was steady and paced away in a :28 flat closing quarter to win by almost three lengths in 1:56.2.  

It was the tenth win of the year for All Charged Up ($4.30) and it padded her already stout bankroll to $79,144 for owner J P Stables.

Mark Whitcroft won three races on the card while Chris Lems and Truman Gale won two apiece. Trainer Sally Cartier also sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 9) with the first post set for 6:15.

September 7, 2016 - 12:46pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

With the county fair racing now wrapped up in the Empire State, the top point-getters from each age, gait and gender group will converge on Batavia Downs on tonight (Sept. 7) to compete in the eight $10,000 finals.

After racing was scheduled at 22 stops around New York from July 1 through Aug. 25, it has come down to 53 horses spread across eight finals on one night. Those events have been carded as races one through eight with the first post time set for 6:15 p.m.

Here is a list of the top point leaders from each group.

3-year-old pacing colts and geldings          Midnight Pass (Kenneth J-The Company Store)         362 points

3-year-old trotting colt and geldings           Steuben Bentley (Crazed-Be A Babe)                         333 points

3-year-old pacing fillies                              Sea’s Ideal (American Ideal-A B Sea)                          483 points       

3-year-old trotting fillies                              Linda’s Choice (Conway Hall-Howard’s Sister)            358 points       

2-year-old pacing colts and geldings         Sea Rocky Roll (Rock N Roll Heaven-A B Seascape)  311 points

2-year-old trotting colt and geldings           Steuben Surfs Up (Conway Hall-Pana Colada)            255 points

2-year-old pacing fillies                              Math Writer (Riverboat King-Mathamomics)                 383 points

2-year-old trotting fillies                              Too Cool To Fool (Conway Hall-Travelin Deal)             300 points

A complete list of county fair points broken down by category can be viewed by clicking on this link. (http://www.nysirestakes.com/backend/News/news_upload/county_fair_schedule__105.pdf )

September 5, 2016 - 12:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Driver Marcus Miller with Pointomygranson.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Two divisions of the New York Sire Stakes for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings went postward at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 3) to compete for their share of the $110,000 purses up for grabs and one of the winners made track history.

Pointomygranson (American Ideal-Sangaal) went to the front and took a lead he would never relinquish en route to a five-length victory in 1:53.2 in his $55,500 division. That time was a new track record for 2-year-old pacing geldings.

Marcus Miller rushed Pointomygranson off the gate and set unchallenged fractional times of :28.2 and :58. At that point, Jim Morrill Jr. had the heavily favored Funknwaffles rolling up on the outside trying to catch the leader. But when Miller saw him coming past five-eighths, he asked his horse for more and then hung on as Pointomygranson accelerated.

Pointomygranson would not let the challenger get anywhere close to him up the backside and when they hit the stretch, he was pulling away with every stride and Miller was sitting chilly behind him. He paced his last quarter in :27 flat under wraps.

“He was real strong in the race, I couldn’t have been happier with him” said Marcus Miller. “It was the first time I drove him but they told me he would be good tonight and he was!”

It was the second NYSS win of the year for Pointomygranson ($7.00) and it pushed his earnings to $63,229 for owner Gold Standard Equine, LLC. The winner is trained by Chris Ryder.

(Driver Drew Monti with Americanfirewater.)

It was bombs away in the first $55,500 split when 30-1 Americanfirewater (American Ideal-Lucky Turn) pulled a major upset.

1-4 favorite Miso Fast (Jim Morrill Jr.) had things his own way on the front end with the field in single-file behind him, cutting even fractions of :28.2, :58.1 and 1:27.3. But just when things were looking anticlimactic, Drew Monti pulled Americanfirewater from the three hole and shot up alongside the leader in quick fashion.

Miso Fast and Americanfirewater then tore around the far turn, matching strides as they went. At the top of the lane it was anyone’s race and after both colts were driven hard to the wire, Americanfirewater wanted it more and won by a length in 1:56.2, which was a new lifetime mark.

“When he came out of the hole, I knew he had a real shot. He was super aggressive today and you could tell right away” said Drew Monti.

It was the first lifetime win for Americanfirewater ($62.50) and the winner’s share boosted his annual income to $54,739 for owner Rock & Roll Stable, Inc. Americanfirewater is trained by Rick Dane Jr.

There were also two $15,000 divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card.

In the first division, Rollin About (Roll With Joe-Flitabout) was a wire to wire winner for driver Marcus Miller in 1:56.4 for owners Anthony Lombardi, D Van Witzenburg and George Golemes. The winner paid $8.20.

The second division went to Percy’s Z Tam and Pat Lachance in 1:56.2 on the strength of a three-wide move at three-quarters. Percy’s Z Tam ($9.70) is owned by Z Tam Stable, LLC, M & M Harness Racing, LLC, Royal Flush Stable, LLC, and Pat LaChance, who also trains him.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs this afternoon (Sept. 5) with a special Labor Day matinee card featuring the annual Drivers' Bike Race, which will be held after the seventh race. 

September 3, 2016 - 11:31am
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of Winky’s Pride (#4) and driver Drew Monti.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Drew Monti put on a driving clinic at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 2) winning five races on the card that included both top trots of the week. 

In the featured $10,000 Open for the diagonal gaited, Winky’s Pride ($14.20) went gate to wire in unfettered style. After leaving from post four, Winky’s Pride was perfectly rated through fractions of :28.2, :58.2 and 1:28.2 when J A T O (Mike Caprio) sidled her at three-quarters. Monti glanced back and popped the plugs right after and the chestnut mare new to turn it up.

After they circled the turn and headed down the lane, J A T O continued his assault from the outside and Studio City (Dave McNeight III) shot through the passing lane in pursuit as well. But Winky’s Pride would not relent and under mild urging, held off all challengers to the wire and won by a long neck in 1:57.4. Studio City was second and J A T O was third.

It was the fifth win of the year for Winky’s Pride and the second consecutive week she beat the boys in the feature. With the winner’s share of the purse, her earnings rose to $46,039 in 2016 for owner-trainer Robert Hummel.

In the co-featured $8,500 Open II trot, Monti scored with El Diablo Hall ($12.20) in his first local start after a private purchase. El Diablo Hall sat second behind BZ Glide (Mike Caprio) for the entire mile, before finding room in the passing lane. From there, he powered up the pylons to a half-length victory in 1:57.4.

El Diablo Hall is owned by James Caradori and is trained by Darrin Monti.

Rounding out Monti’s five winners were Chelsea’s Chance ($8.70), Tenor Duharas ($4.20) and Warhorse ($5.00). His UDR for the night was .593.

There were other outstanding performances by several horsemen on Friday night as well. John Cummings Jr.'s Batavia homecoming saw him win three races during the night as did trainer Darrin Monti. And Kevin Cummings hit the winner’s circle twice along with trainer Mike Carrubba.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 3) with two main events. The New York Sires Stakes for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings rolls into town along with the $7.4 million dollar horse, Foiled Again, who will compete in the overnight featured $10,000 Open pace. Post time for the first race is 6:15 p.m.

September 2, 2016 - 2:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports.

(Above photo of Foiled Again, who has won more than $7.4 million and is the richest standardbred ever of either gaitcourtesy of Ken Weingartner.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Foiled Again, who has won more than $7.4 million and is the richest standardbred ever of either gait, will be at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 3) to compete in the weekly featured $10,000 Open Handicap pace.

Batavia Downs has hosted the elite of the sport over the 70 years it has been in existence including Proximity, Good Time, Bret Hanover, Albatross and Niatross. Foiled Again is in the same league as all those legends but has also surpassed every trotter or pacer that has ever competed in the sport for earnings.

Foiled Again has won countless stakes and has been race-timed in 1:47.1. He has 88 wins, 61 seconds and 40 thirds in 263 lifetime starts and has earned $7,407,758 in purses. The United States Harness Writers Association named him Pacer of the Year in 2011, best older male pacer in three consecutive seasons (2011-2013) and he also was a two-time O'Brien Award winner as top older pacing horse in Canada (2011 and 2013).

Foiled Again has competed at Batavia Downs twice before in his career, both times in the tracks signature race, the Robert J. Kane Memorial Pace. And Foiled Again won both times: in 2009 timed in 1:52.3 with Matt Kakaley driving and in 2013 timed in 1:52 with Brett Miller aboard.

The all-time track record at Batavia Downs is 1:51.1 and that was set by Aracache Hanover in 2011. Given the great weather forecast and how the new racing surface has been setting up, there is a legitimate chance that standard could be in jeopardy.

Saturday night’s card also features two divisions of the $111,000 New York Sires Stakes for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings that will feature the best freshman male pacers in the state.

Post time for the first race is 6:15 p.m.

(Inset photo of Foiled Again courtesy of Batavia Downs.)

September 2, 2016 - 1:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, bike race, Batavia Downs.

(Pictured is Mickey Holliday winning the 2015 drivers' bike race at Batavia Downs.)                      

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

A tradition that started in 1979 continues on Monday (Sept. 5) during the Labor Day matinee extravaganza at Batavia Downs and that is, the annual drivers' bike race. This “friendly” competition between the horsemen features eight local drivers who will line up at the quarter pole and make their way around the far turn and head for the wire.

Last year’s winner was Mickey Holliday who won with a strong stretch drive. Holliday will be back to defend his title against some new faces as well as some cagey veterans. But the best part is the fans get to win the actual brand new bikes used in the race.

You must sign-up in the Paddock Room between noon and 2:45 p.m to be eligible. Each patron can put their entry in one of eight boxes; each coinciding with a driver in the race. Then from the winning driver’s box, eight winners will be randomly drawn and each will be given one of the bikes the drivers used. The bike race will be held after the seventh harness race and the drawing for the bikes after the bike race has been declared official.

There is no purchase necessary but you must be at least 18 years old to enter and you mist be present to win.

The bike race is sponsored by Crazy Cheap Cars, of Oakfield,

Click this link for a video of last year’s race. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9l_rbJ9yhR4 )

Here is the line-up of drivers competing in the 2016 Invitational:

Post -Driver                        

1 -- Patrick Galbraith            

2 -- Rock Vinci                       

3 -- JD Perrin                         

4 -- Jimmy McNeight Jr.       

5 -- Mickey Holliday           

6 -- Brad Jackson                 

7 -- Denny Bucceri               

8 -- Drew Monti             

Also featured on the Labor Day card are $1 Sahlen’s hot dogs, draft beer and soda on the track apron from noon to 4 p.m. And in the Clubhouse from noon-3:30 p.m. you can enjoy a $10.95 chicken bar-b-que provided by the Center Street Smoke House, of Batavia. And with each dinner you buy you will receive $10 worth of free play on the gaming floor, so it’s almost like eating for free!        

And of course there are 13 live harness races scheduled to start at 1:15 p.m. 

September 2, 2016 - 1:04pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The top two point leaders for New York Sire Stake 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings will headline the 16 starters who will compete for $111,000 in two divisions at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 3)

In the first $55,500 division, Miso Fast (Roll With Joe-Sakura Hanover) comes in leading all his peers with 205 NYSS points on the strength of four consecutive wins in that competition this year. In his last start at Yonkers, he got parked out the better part of the mile and ended up finishing fifth in 1:55.4. That event was on Aug. 18 and he hasn’t raced since, so he comes in to this race off a 16-day layoff.

This year, Miso Fast has a mark of 1:53.1 at Tioga Downs and has banked $79,636 in earnings.

Trainer Ron Burke has retained the services of Jim Morrill Jr. to do the driving and Miso Fast will leave from post three as the 9-5 morning line favorite.

Serious Major (Art Major-Seriously) will be strong competition as he moved into the NYSS level after winning three straight races at the Excelsior A level. Since making the jump he has won at Yonkers Raceway in 1:56.2 and finished second at Vernon Downs in 1:52.3 to Funknwaffles who will race in the other division here. For the year, Serious Major is five out of six in the win column.

Serious Major  took a mark of 1:54.4 at Tioga Downs and has won $78,606 in purses.

Ray Fisher Jr. will pick up the lines for trainer Chris Ryder and leave from post 5 as the 7-2 second choice.

In the second $55,500 split, Funknwaffles (American Ideal-Hatsoff Hanover) is a perfect six for six on the year, leads all his NYSS competitors in earnings and currently sits second in points with 150. He started out in Excelsior A, winning three races there before moving up to NYSS action where he won three more.

Funknwaffles just scored his lifetime mark at Vernon last week in 1:52.1 and has $106,439 in purses for his efforts.

Jim Morrill Jr. will be in the bike for trainer John Butenschoen and is listed at 9-5 from post seven.

Pointomygranson (American Ideal-Sangall) has only one NYSS win this year and would just make the final if today’s points were to decide it. But he’s been a solid competitor in every race he’s been in. He was second at Monticello Raceway in 1:56.1, coming home in :27.3. And last week at Mohawk Raceway in the Metro he closed sharply from seventh in :26.1 to finish fourth, beaten only a length and a half in a 1:51.3 mile.

Pointomygranson has a mark of 1:55.1 at Saratoga Raceway and has earned $35,479 this year.

Marcus Miller will be in the house to drive for trainer Chris Ryder and drew the invisible rail at 4-1.

There are also two divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card that is slated to begin at 6:15 p.m. 

September 1, 2016 - 1:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

(Photo of Dayson with driver Jim Morrill Jr.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

He’s diminutive in size but dominant on the track. Dayson ($2.20) came from off the pace and pulled away to a convincing victory in his division of the $119,300 New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Aug. 31).

Off the wings, Allerage Echo (Chris Lems) and The Royal Harry (Oskar Florhed) both left and battled old-school to the quarter in :28 flat before The Royal Harry finally took the lead. Meanwhile Dayson (Jim Morrill Jr.) relaxed in third about eight lengths behind, waiting for the dust to settle. The field remained unchanged to the half but became more closely grouped, nose to tail. 

At the five-eighths pole, Morrill tipped Dayson and asked for more, and more is what he got. He eased past Allerage Echo and snuck up on The Royal Harry as they circled the final turn. When they hit the top of the stretch, Dayson found another gear and he pulled away on his own. Morrill had the whip tucked and the lines in his lap as they crossed the wire a four-length winner in 1:57.3.

“He was very good; nice and strong. He got around the track perfect tonight and didn’t do anything wrong” said winning driver Jim Morrill Jr. “I tipped him up the backside and was hand-wrapped to the wire.”

It was the eighth win in 12 starts this year for Dayson (Conway Hall-Nervey’s Taurus) who now boasts $230,583 in 2016 earnings for owners Burke Racing Stables LLC, Our Horse Cents Stable, J&T Silva Stable LLC and Rossie Smith.

In the other NYSS division, A Jersey Contract ($14.00) pulled the upset after a crafty drive by the Downs leading driver Kevin Cummings that gave him the home-field advantage.

With the scratch of morning line favorite Smalltownthrowdown due to his participation in the $500,000 Yonkers Trot on Saturday, Sir Royson (Jim Marohn Jr.) became the favorite and went off at 1-1. However he also made a break before the gate opened and that immediately made the race interesting. Southern Palms (Jim Morrill Jr.) took full advantage off the gaffe and opened up a three-length lead over pocket-sitting A Jersey Contract going to the quarter. 

(Photo of A Jersey Contract with driver Kevin Cummings.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The field stood pat past the half when That’s A Bad Boy (Tyler Freese) pulled first over with Drazzmatazz (Mark Macdonald) on his helmet. The top four were then grouped two-by-two at three-quarters in 1:28.4. Around the last turn, Drazzmatazz tipped three-wide around That’s A Bad Boy trying to gain on the leader, but A Jersey Contract who had the perfect journey in second, shot up the pylons and collared Southern Palms by a neck in 1:57.4. The time was a new lifetime mark for the winner.

“The race shaped up real well for us. We got a two-hole trip right to the wire and he had a lot of trot sitting in there” said driver Kevin Cummings of A Jersey Contract. “I knew when I got him in the passing lane he’d give me more.”

It was the third win this season for A Jersey Contract (Lucky Chucky-Giza Dream) and it pushed his yearly earnings to $88,574 for owners Tom Vassiliou and Nicholas Tallarico. A Jersey Contract is trained by Maureen Salino.

There were also two divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card.

The first division was won by Credevi (Credit Winner-Fleur De Vie) in 1:58, which was a new lifetime mark. Credevi ($2.30) was driven by Jim Morrill Jr. for owner Wanda Polisseni’s Purple Haze Stable and trainer Trond Smedshammer.

The second leg went to Royal Bachelor (RC Royalty-Becca J) in 1:57.4. Royal Bachelor is trained and driven by Dan Daley and is owned by Ann-Mari Daley, James Crawford IV and Michael White. The winner returned $9.

Jim Morrill Jr. is the leading driver on the New York Sire Stake circuit and also the third leading UDR driver in North America and he showed why on Wednesday as he won five races; three in stake races and two overnighters. His victories included Credevie ($2.30), Dayson ($2.20), Thanks for Playin ($2.60), Terrorcam ($5.10) and Purple N gold ($5.10).

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 2) with post time set for 6:15.

Pages

Subscribe to

Calendar

S M T W T F S
 
 
 
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
7
 
8
 
9
 
10
 
11
 
12
 
13
 
14
 
15
 
16
 
17
 
18
 
19
 
20
 
21
 
22
 
23
 
24
 
25
 
26
 
27
 
28
 
29
 
30
 
 

Copyright © 2008-2016 The Batavian. Some Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

blue button