Welcome to New York Sire Stakes

Welcome and thank you for visiting the Agriculture & New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund website—the official home of the New York Sire Stakes!

The New York Sire Stakes is the state’s premier harness racing program designed to promote the breeding, buying and racing of standardbred horses in New York State. Administered by the Agriculture & New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund, the New York Sire Stakes is the nation’s oldest harness racing program of its kind.

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RUS NY Fair Series Finals Tuesday

Monday, 18 August 2014 09:50

RUS NY Fair Series Finals Tuesday

By CJ Millar

        The countdown is on!

        In just a few days, horses and riders will be competing to capture New York’s inaugural Racing Under-Saddle Fair Series championship. 

        The seven-race series, which featured race legs at six county fairs across the state, will culminate in Tuesday’s championship final race at the Tompkins County Fair in Trumansburg.

        Throughout the months of July and August, the series gave participants the opportunity to earn points toward the final.

        To be eligible for the final, horses needed to compete and finish in any two of the six legs. Entries are as follows and are based on points earned:

1.     Vassar Hall leads the group going into the final race with 75 points. The 10-year-old mare, trained by Brett Crawford, has won every leg in which she has participated. Her first victory was on July 10 at Afton Fair. She won again at the Otsego County Fair in Morris on July 29 before scoring again in the second division at the Chenango County Fair in Norwich on Aug. 5. Michelle Crawford will ride.

2.     Kash Now is second on the list with 51 points. Michelle Miller has ridden the 10-year-old mare to one victory, at the Seneca County Fair on July 14 in Waterloo. Kash Now, trained by Michael Miller and owned by Lance Diehl, also has a second and three thirds in the series.

3.     Truth in Action was ridden to victory by owner/trainer Karen Isbell in the first leg of the series on July 3 at Goshen Historical Track. The 8-year-old gelding took second to Vassar Hall in the second division of the Norwich race. Although Truth in Action only raced in two races, he has earned 35 points and is third on the list. Karen Isbell will ride.

4.     My Irish Molly got a late start in the series. Jocelyn Lavigne rode her to a victory in the first division of the Norwich race. Although the mare only raced in one race, she earned a point and qualification into the final for showing up at Steuben County Fair in Bath, which was cancelled due to rain.

5.     John-Michael, owned by Terry Miller and trained by Michael Miller, has earned 21 points. The 6-year-old gelding raced in Afton and Norwich, taking second in both, with Tara Hynes aboard. He also earned a point for showing up for the race in Bath. 

6.     Lemon Pepper has also only raced in two legs of the series and has earned five points. The 15-year-old gelding is owned, trained and ridden by Jennifer Lowrey and received one point for finishing in the first leg; three points for placing fourth in the second division in Norwich, and one point for appearing at Bath

        The purse for the Final is $2,000, plus over $1,500 in prizes from sponsors. In addition to series sponsors Draper Therapies and Horse Quencher, Hawthorne Products donated a gift basket and NY Equine Fitness Center at Cleremont Farms is donating a Race & Recovery package valued at over $1,250. The R&R package includes 3 treatments in their equine saltwater spa and hyperbaric chamber. Riders in the final race will receive gift bags from the sponsors in addition to a pair of riding gloves donated by Big D’s. There will also be a High Point Rider Award presented to the rider who has earned the most points, regardless of horse(s) ridden throughout the series. The standings of qualified riders are as follows:

1.     Michelle Crawford – 75*

2.     Michelle Miller – 50*

3.     Karen Isbell – 35*

4.     Jennifer Lowrey – 25*

5.     Tara Hynes – 25*

        Many other sponsors also contributed services and financial support to the series. The series was made possible thanks to the following sponsors:

·New York Sire Stakes: Flagship Sponsor

·Horsefly Group: Marketing Sponsor

·Series Sponsors:

o    Draper Therapies

o    Horse Quencher

o    Crawford Farms

o    Hawthorne Products

o    Eric Abbatiello Racing

·         Race sponsors: Barb & Rick Bateman and T&K Harrington, LLC

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Yonkers - Becerra

Friday, 15 August 2014 08:59

‘Mosquito’ Bugs Big Favorite at Yonkers

By Frank Drucker, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers

YONKERS, NY – The 1-20 “death and taxes” lass Sassa Hanover was snapped on the money by 17-1 outsider Mosquito Blue Chip (Jim Morrill Jr., $36.60) in the first of two divisions of the $194,800 New York Sire Stakes Frank Becerra Pace for 2-year-old fillies Thursday night at Yonkers Raceway.

            Sassa Hanover, looped out of the gate by My Little Delight (Mark MacDonald), eventually made the lead after a :28 opening quarter-mile. From there, a :57.1 intermission before One Hot Majorette (Brian Sears) took out of third. She tried to engage “Sassa” near the three-quarter mark in 1:26.1, but the fave gradually turned away her advances.

Meanwhile, an unhurried Mosquito Blue Chip, last among the quintet from Post 4, worked out a second-over trip. She angled wide and was just fast enough in a four-horse thriller, sticking her nose out at the (1:55) wire for a maiden-breaker. Sassa Hanover (Yannick Gingras) held second, with My Little Delight third, beaten a nose. A head farther back was the hard-charging Heavens Legacy.

            Her sixth start was the first win for third choice “Mosquito,” a daughter of Bettor’s Delight co-owned by Our Three Sons Stable, Danny Falcicchio and trainer Paul Jessop. The exacta paid $68, and there was no triple wagering due to the short field.

 “She was all guts,” Morrill said.

 As for Sassa Hanover, who tasted defeat for the first time after a 4-for-4 start, “She was no good tonight,” Gingras said. “Just didn’t feel the same.”

            Gingras and odds-on Band of Angels ($2.30) were more than good enough in the second ($98,300) Sire Stakes event.

 Put in play early from Post 4, she gave nothing else a chance (:28.2, :57.4; 1:26.2; 1:55.2).  With weak, first-up pressure from Hipnumberone (George Brennan) out of the way, Band of Angels opened three lengths in and out of the final turn.

The final margin was 2½ lengths over uncoupled stablemate Bettor N Better (Jason Bartlett), who rallied from last at the half. Bossers Joy (Sears) was third.  

 “There wasn’t much to it,”  Gingras said. “She’s impressed me every start.”

Band of Angels, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven owned by W J Donovan and trained by Ron Burke, is 5-for-5 to begin her career. The exacta (two wagering favorites) paid $4.30, with the triple returning $15.60.

The New York Sire Stakes continues Monday night, with the $219,700 Bruce Hamilton Pace for 3-year-old fillies.


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Thursday, 14 August 2014 12:06

Avalicious, Driving Miss Crazy victorious in NYSS at Batavia

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

The weather was far from perfect for 3-year-old trotting fillies competing in the New York Sire Stakes Wednesday at Batavia Downs as premature autumnal conditions presented cold temperatures, rain and a track rated as “good.”

But the tough got going and in one race, a major upset was the result.

In the first $59,100 NYSS division, Avalicious (RC Royalty-Say Your Prayers) was sent off the even-money favorite and proved her backers correct as she made a big move at the half and cruised home victorious.

Off the gate, L Dees Scripture (Chris Lems) left for the lead and quickly faced a strong challenge from Oh Sweet Penelope (Dan Daley) up the backside. But just before the quarter that challenger made a break so Lems then guided L Dees Scripture unabated to the half in 1:01.

At that point Avalicious was out and rolling from fourth with Jim Morrill Jr. at the lines to push the issue before swooping by the leader to take command at the three-quarters in 1:30.3. Once they cleared, Morrill gave the filly her head and she trotted away in easy fashion to win in 2:00.4.

Beauty of Gray (Jim Meittinis) shook loose for second and Lindys Crazy Dolly (Jeff Gregory), who was aired out, hung on for third.  

Avalicious paid $4.30. She is owned by Michelle Crawford, Albert Crawford and Patricia Crawford.

This was her fourth win in 11 starts this year and it pushed her earnings to $148,640 for trainer Ron Burke.

The second $59,100 split saw a major upset occur when 1-9 favorite Market Rally made a break attempting to take an early lead.

When the car pulled away to start the race, Driving Miss Crazy (left, with Gates Brunet in the bike) and Gammy’s Girl (Jim Meittinis) both left and got away 1-2 as they straightened out up the backstretch. Market Rally (Jim Morrill Jr.) had tucked fourth off the wings to let the field settle, but then was pulled and started rolling past the eighth pole.

As they passed the quarter in :30 flat, Market Rally got ahead of the front runner to take the lead., but just as soon as she crossed over she made a break and ended up last, spotting Driving Miss Crazy, the new leader, about 10 lengths. Driving Miss Crazy tended to her task, carrying the field to the half in 1:01.1 and the three-quarters in 1:30.4.

After a dull outer-flow offered no challenge through the middle fractions, Annie’s List (Tyler Buter) managed to overtake second and a still-last Market Rally then tipped three-high around fading horses to start making up ground.

As they straightened out for the stretch drive, Brunet was working Driving Miss Crazy to stay alert on the lead; Buter was urging Annie’s List to catch her, and Morrill was working Market Rally to make up lost ground.

After a good stretch drive, the trio hit the wire a length apart from each other with Driving Miss Crazy victorious in 2:00.4.  

In a tight photo, Market Rally did in fact rally for second and Annie’s List was third.

In the shadow of the overwhelming favorite, Driving Miss Crazy was let go at 10-1 and paid $22.60.

This was the sixth win in 13 starts for Driving Miss Crazy (Crazed-Schare Hall), who has earned $124,017 in 2014 for trainer Gates Brunet and owners Theodore Gewertz, Y Jean Brunet and Deborah Brunet.

There were also two divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card and chalk bettors were in heaven as favorites dominated both races.

Right after the $12,600 first division started, Little Baby Peanut (Jeff Gregory) and Twist of Faith (Tyler Buter) both made breaks as the group motored into the first turn. That left Classic Belisima (Gates Brunet) on a loose lead with Do You Believe (Jim Morrill Jr.) getting the trip as the group went single-file to the quarter in :30.4 and the half in 1:02.2.

Past the five-eighths Morrill pulled the pocket sitter and drew even with Classic Belisima. The two went stride for stride around the entire last turn. When they straightened out, Do You Believe proved to be the better horse as she pulled away to a two-length victory in 2:01.4.

Classic Belisima hung on for second and Ginny and Tonic (Ray Fisher Jr.) got up for third.

Do You Believe paid $2.30 as the heavy favorite for owners Brian Doolittle and Leigh Raymer, who also trains the filly.

In the second $12,700 division, Dreamsteeler (Cash Hall-Dream Street), in a dominating performance for trainer Tracy Brainard, turned in the fastest time of any of the stake races during the night, be they NYSS or Excelsior.

Driver Jim Morrill Jr. took his time getting to the front with Dreamsteeler, but once they got there the filly was brave and Morrill had his hands full rating the mile. He did a perfect job as they scooted through even fractions of :30, 1:00 and 1:30. Down the lane, Morrill sat chilly as Dreamsteeler jogged home in 1.59.4.

How Bout Cash (Chris Lems) and Slice Slice Baby (Tyler Buter) completed the top three finishers, in that order.

Dreamsteeler went off 1-9 and paid $2.20. It was her sixth win in seven starts and brought the 2014 Excelsior points-leading filly's coffers up to $34,950.

Driver Jim Morrill Jr. brought home four winners on the night and Gates Brunet and Tyler Buter both piloted doubles.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs Friday with a 6:35 post. 


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Yonkers McGuire

Thursday, 14 August 2014 11:40

Familiar Stars Shine at Yonkers

By Frank Drucker, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway
YONKERS, NY – The $221,000 New York Sire Stakes Dick McGuire Trot for 3-year-old colts and geldings was held Tuesday night and a total of 13 entered a pair of six-figure divisions.The event honored the memory of the Basketball Hall of Famer, former New York Knickerbocker standout – and avid horseplayer – with family and friends making winner’s circle presentations.

As luck and form would have it, the two winners here were the same two that won this division’s last downstate go-round nearly three weeks ago. The first ($109,500) grouping saw last season’s frosh state-bred champion, Flyhawk El Durado (Mark MacDonald, $2.50), deliver on a puny pari-mutuel promise through fractions of :28.3, 58.2, 1:28 with a final in 1:56.1. In play from Post 2, he played leapfrog with Cash Me Out (Mickey McGivern), then completed his appointed rounds, whipping Cash Me Out by a length-and-a-quarter, with Daley Lovin’ (Dan Daley) third.

For the in-form Flyhawk El Durado, a son of Conway Hall trained by Mark Ford for owner Martin Scharf, it was his fifth win (third consecutive) in 11 seasonal       starts. The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $4.50, with the triple returning $10.80. “Right now, he’s as good as anyone in the division,” MacDonald said. “When he stays calm, which he didn’t always do, he can trot all day and dig in at the end.”

The second ($111,500) Sire Stakes event saw odds-on Gural Hanover (Morrill Jr., $2.60) make one move to the lead, then turn out the lights.  Settling fifth early from Post 7, the people’s choice saw Royal Max (John MacDonald) thrown down a :28.4 opening gauntlet. From there, Gural Hanover made the lead (:58.1, 1:27, 1:56.2) and slammed the door. He whipped Royal Max by four lengths, with Mister Anson (Jeff Gregory) third. The only other entrant under double-digit odds, second choice Zoey De Vie (Jason Bartlett), broke early.  

For Gural Hanover, a Crazed gelding co-owned (as Burke Racing) by Weaver Bruscemi; Little E and Panhellenic stables, and (trainer) Ron Burke, it was his seventh win (sixth consecutive) in nine ’14 tries. The exacta paid $9.70, with the triple returning $49.80.  New York Sire Stakes continue Thursday night, with the $194,800 Frank Becerra Pace for 2-year-old fillies. The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily




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Goldstein Trot - 'Cutup' Behaves

Tuesday, 05 August 2014 14:05

By Frank Drucker, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway
YONKERS, NY -- A pair of divisions—worth $109,500 and $111,500, respectively— each attracting six 3-year-old fillies was featured in Monday night’s Joe Goldstein Trot at Yonkers Raceway.
The opening state-bred six-pack proved a very good time for Cutup Hanover (Jeff Gregory, $25.80) to break her maiden. “Break” had been the operative word for “Cutup,” who has now alternated flat miles and misbehaves over her last seven tries.
Monday, from Post 2, she was alone through intervals of :29.3, :59.3, 1:28.2 and 1:57.1. Second -- beaten four lengths -- was a loosely pocketed Beauty of Gray (Jim Meittinis), who held off 6-5 favorite Avalicious (Jim Morrill Jr.).
For fifth-choice Cutup Hanover, a daughter of Crazed trained by Chris Ryder for owner Golden Gate Stable, it took 10 starts this year to get her picture taken. She was unraced at 2.
The exacta paid $131.50, with the triple returning $312.
“We’ve had a lot of issues with her, just tinkering with some things,” Ryder said. “I changed some of her equipment and shoeing -- mainly shoeing -- and we’re finally seeing some results.” 
Monday night’s second NYSS event was, as advertised, a handy win by division-dominating Markey Rally (Morrill Jr., $2.10). Away third from Post 4, last season’s champion watched as Driving Miss Crazy (Gates Brunet) and Flyhawk Falina (George Brennan) contested fractions of :28.3 and :57.4.
It was go time soon after for Market Rally, who went up and over “Miss Crazy” well before a 1:27.2 three-quarters.
From there, she opened 2¾ lengths into the lane before winning by a wrapped-up 2¼ lengths in 1:56.4. Annie’s List (Tyler Buter) was second, with Maud Blue Chip (Brian Sears) third. 
Market Rally, a daughter of Cash Hall, is 5-for-9 this season (5-for-5 since adding Lasix) for co-owners (trainer) Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi and Panhellenic Stable. The exacta paid $5.60, with the triple (three wagering favorites in order) returning $12.60.

“I shut her down once I made the lead,” was Morrill’s succinct version of another succinct victory. 

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NYSS Results at Batavia

Tuesday, 05 August 2014 13:42

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs
Welcomed by perfect weather and a racing strip that was at warp speed, the New York bred 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings brought their “A” game and put on quite a show before a large audience.
In the first $58,000 division, even-money favorite Flyhawk El Durado (Conway Hall-El Paso Gal) fired from the gate sharply to take the lead by mid-turn. With Zoey De Vie (Jim Morrill Jr.) and Cash Me Out (Michael Mc Givern) close in tow, the threesome broke away from the rest of the field and toured the track to the three-quarters in 1:27.1.
At that station Mc Givern extracted Cash Me Out from third to challenge the leader, but the closest he could get was a glance of his tail. Driver Mark MacDonald popped the plugs and, flanked by Zoey De Vie inside and Cash Me Out to his right, Flyhawk El Durado outtrotted them both to win by a half-length in 1:55.4.
After the race, Mark MacDonald spoke glowingly of his horse.
“He’s just a professional; he’s handy as a rule and he does his job. The two horses we beat are two of the best in the New York Sire Stakes, but I had a pretty good one too.”
Flyhawk El Durado is owned by Martin Scharf and is trained by Mark Ford. He returned $4.20 for the win. The victory pushed his lifetime earnings to $468,687.
In the second division, which also went for $58,000, Gural Hanover did what just about everyone on hand thought he would do: win handily.
In a departure from recent starts, driver Jim Morrill Jr. took Gural Hanover (Crazed-Givemearing) off the gate and tucked him in a loose third while Royal Max (Mark MacDonald) bolted for the front. When the dust settled near the quarter, Morrill pulled the gelding and took a lead that he would never relinquish.
With the whip on his shoulder and the lines in his lap, Morrill was a passenger the rest of the race as Gural Hanover was all business while coasting to a wrapped-up 1:55.4 victory. The overwhelming favorite opened up at 1-9 and went off at 1-9 and returned $2.10 to his backers.
After the race, Morrill reflected “We dodged a bullet by drawing the softer division but that’s alright because it’s a long year and to get an easy one once in a while helps. He’s safe; I could have blasted him out of there, but he was in a good spot and I just waited for the field to settle and slid him in front and let him do the rest.”
Gural Hanover is owned by the Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi, Little E LLC and the Panhellenic Stable and is trained by Ron Burke. The victory boosted his lifetime winnings to $191,363.
There was some excellent competition in the Excelsior A divisions that were also on the card:
General Bill Brown (Crazed-Dusty Girl) extended his winning streak to four with a 1:57.3 tally for driver Mark MacDonald and trainer Leah Raymer. 

Commissioner Daley (Conway hall-Irish Washerwoman) scored his fourth win in five starts with his three-length decision in 1:57.2. Dan Daley both trains and drives the gelding. 

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