Posts Tagged ‘Beatgoeson Hanover’

The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono Week in Review

Tuesday, June 16th, 2015

June 6-12, 2015

It was bound to happen. As impressive as the times on The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono’s track records page might be, each year several of those records fall by the wayside. It took nearly 2 ½ months for any horse to match or break one of those lofty standards this season, which was a bit surprising considering the caliber of horses we’ve seen so far this year. 2015’s first incursion into the records page came on Saturday night, and the horse that came up big leads us off in this edition of the Weekly Awards.


The crowd was still abuzz following the Triple Crown victory of American Pharaoh early Saturday evening when a pack of Open trotters hit the track to restart Pocono’s harness racing program, which had begun earlier in the afternoon. The 1-2 favorite was Daylon Miracle, a mare fresh off a Preferred win at the Meadows against other distaffers. Frau Blucher, the other mare in the field, got away as the 9-5 second choice, as she was stepping up in class after a condition win in the slop on May 30 in an unhurried 1:55.

Frau Blucher was a superstar as a 2 and 3-year-old for trainer Chris Oakes, earning over $900,000 in those two seasons. Her 4-year-old season included a world record for her age group when she won at Pocono in 1:51:2, but that was just one of two wins she managed all year in just nine races. Her five-year-old season included just one start prior to that May 30 win, and she went off-stride in that one.

But on Saturday night, she showed just how dangerous she could be in top form. Driver George Napolitano Jr. sent her to the front end early and didn’t have much pressure to the half-mile marker, which allowed him to rate her conservatively. Frau Blucher put on a show in the second half of the mile, keeping the pursuit at bay and eventually closing in :27:4 to win by 1 ¼ lengths over Possessed Fashion. The winning time of 1:51:4 matched the track record for aged trotting mares, which had previously been shared by Beatgoeson Hanover and In Your Room. Frau Blucher now joins male trotting superstar Father Patrick as the only horses to occupy two spots on the Pocono track record page.

Other top trotters this week include: Schalom G (George Napolitano Jr., Neal Ehrhart), who moved up in class on Tuesday night to score his second straight condition win, this one in 1:54:4; Rossini (Jason Bartlett, Jim Raymer), who powered to a condition victory on Saturday night in 1:53:1; and Raise The Curtain (Jason Bartlett, Timothy Lancaster), who rallied Wednesday night for his second straight condition win on Wednesday night in a career-best 1:54:1.


The barn of Pocono’s leading trainer Rene Allard never seems to run out of pacers able to compete at the highest levels. Already in 2015 we’ve seen Domethatagain and Sparky Mark take Pacer of the Week honors for their exploits in Open and condition paces at Pocono. Big Boy Dreams had hopes he could join them on Saturday night in a $30,000 Open pace.

This 4-year-old stallion raced once at Pocono in April, finishing a close 3rd in a condition pace. He then went to Canada for two races in the Confederation Cup, finishing 3rd in the big-money final, and followed that up with an Open Handicap victory at Yonkers. On Saturday night, Big Boy Dreams rolled to the front end with Simon Allard in the bike, and when he made it to the half in :55:3 on a night when the wind was helping horses in the front stretch, you knew he was going to be tough to catch.

Big Boy Dreams turned on the jets in the second half of the mile and stayed strong to the finish line. He ended up winning by a length in 1:49:4, a new career-best, over Texican N, giving him two consecutive wins over Open competition. He has a lot of competition in his barn for accolades, but Big Boy Dreams is racing as well as any of his stablemates right now, which is high praise indeed.

Honorable mention on the pacing side includes: McKenry (George Napolitano Jr., Chris Oakes), a 3-year-old who picked up his second straight condition victory on Tuesday night, this time in a career-best 1:51:4; Caviart Shelley (Jim Morrill Jr., Ron Burke), a mare who ripped off her fifth straight condition win on Wednesday night in a career-best time of 1:50:4; and Cloris Hanover (Tyler Buter, Todd Buter), who won a condition pace against other mares with ease for the second straight week, doing it in a time of 1:51.


This pacing mare, with Jim Morrill Jr. driving, rallied from way back on the outside to upend a claiming handicap field on Wednesday night at 22-1, paying off $47.60 on a $2 win ticket.


This was a typical George Nap week, as he hit double digits in wins over the four racing nights and chalked up five victories against the elite competition on Saturday night.


Carr’s training average at Pocono has been solid for several years running, and she showed off his wares with back-to-back winners on the card on Sunday night.

That will do it for this week, but we’ll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at

Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs Week in Review

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

November 1-7, 2013

As we have now reached the month of November, it’s time to start looking back on the season that was. While we still have some racing left to go, we would be remiss if out time ran out and we didn’t honor some of the best performers who have graced the Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs stage in 2013. This week I’m proud to announce our 2013 Horses of the Year.

Although I had a little bit of input, most of the work in terms of tracking the best performances and making the selections was done by our Racing Marketing Manager Jennifer Starr and Clerk of Course Terri Phalen. It’s a difficult job, because of the sheer amount of great horses we have seen at the Pocono oval this season. These are fine choices though, a quartet of horses who are representative of the exemplary racing product that MSP had to offer in 2013. The envelopes, please.


This 4-year-old gelding from the Aaron Lambert barn has been a standout at Pocono for a while now, but his 2013 season was one to remember. He made just six starts at MSPD this season, all against top-flight competition, and won four of them. All four of his victories, with his regular Pocono driver Andrew McCarthy aboard, came in times of less than 1:50.

Dynamic Youth delivered some especially eye-opening wins this year. In June, he won elimination for the Ben Franklin pace in a field that included superstar pacers Betterthancheddar, Clear Vision, and Golden Receiver. On October 5, his second of back-to-back wins in the Preferred pacing class came in a scorching time of 1:48:1, which matched a world record for 4-year-old geldings on the pace. No other horse had such consistent success at the top levels at Pocono than this one, which is why Dynamic Youth is deserving of this outstanding honor.


A 5-year-old mare trained by Nifty Norman, Beatgoeson Hanover served notice that she would special at Pocono this season with her very first start of the meet, a condition win back in April 27 that came in 1:52:1, matching a track record for aged trotting mares. She followed that up with a Preferred win the next week.

When she returned to the Preferred trotting class at Pocono in August, she outdid herself with a winning mile of 1:51:4 with Tyler Buter in the bike, which broke not just her own track record but a world record for her age group on a 5/8-mile oval. Add in a respectable 5th place performance in the Breeders Crown finals and another easy Preferred win on October 26 and you can see why this mare gets the nod in this very competitive category.


The pride of the Amber Buter barn is without a doubt this gutty 6-year-old mare. Pocono has been just one of her stops this season and she has made the rounds to just about all of the best East Coast tracks. But it was her performance against the best distaff pacers at MSPD that earned her this award.

In five starts in the Preferred Mares pacing class, which is the top of the heap for distaffers at Pocono, Feeling You, with Tyler Buter in the bike, won three times and finished a close second in the other two. Last Friday night may have been her signature victory. Following a disappointing 7th-place finish in the Breeders Crown, she won a Preferred Handicap over a field that included Rocklamation, who finished 2nd in the Breeders Crown, and Drop The Ball, the world record holder in the age group. That victory shows that Feeling You was as good as any pacing mare this season.


This was probably the toughest category to choose, because there were many claimers who had dominant stretches in their respective divisions. St Pete Star gets the nod for the fact that he put together an impressive record and did so when he was either near or at the very top of the claiming ladder.

Although he tailed off at the end of the season, St Pete Star, a 9-year-old stallion, had an awesome stretch from late April to the middle of August where he won eight of thirteen races and raised his claiming price from $15,000 to $25,000 in the process. He won for five different trainers in that span because he was a popular claiming commodity. At one point he won four in a row and six of seven, with a career-best victory of 1:49:2 in that span. All of those statistics tell you what anybody who saw St Pete Star at the peak of his powers this year would know: That he was the best of the best of the claimers at Pocono in 2013.

Next week we’ll wrap up the season with our final article of the year. Until then, we’ll see at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at


Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs Week in Review

Friday, September 6th, 2013

August 30-September 5, 2013

August may be in the rear-view mirror, but it went out with a bang at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. A track record fell on Friday night and a world record went by the books on Saturday night. It was quite a week of racing, and it’s no surprise that those two record-setters end up with the most honored positions in this edition of the Weekly Awards.


If anyone seemed poised to break a record in Friday night’s $21,000 featured pace for mares who were non-winners of $24,000 in the last five races, Southwind Jazmin was the one. In the very same class a week earlier, the 5-year-old mare completely dominated with a two-length win in 1:49:3, and the margin and time could have been more impressive had she been kept to task. It’s no wonder that she was the 2-5 favorite at race time.

One of the horses that she beat the previous start was Lightning Paige, a 4-year-old mare from the Steve Elliott barn. She was a non-threatening third in that race, and she found herself in the pocket chasing the heavy favorite throughout the race. Even with fast fractions, it seemed like the only thing up for debate was whether or not Southwind Jazmin would challenge a track record.

Yet Lightning Paige had other ideas. Driver Andrew McCarthy urged her on through the stretch as she blitzed by the favorite to win by a neck. To add insult to injury, Lightning Paige’s winning time of 1:49 even broke the track record for 4-year-old pacing mares. The previous mark of 1:49:2 was held by, you guessed it, Southwind Jazmin, who set it a year ago. That’s what you call a double whammy. Here’s hoping these two star distaffers face off again in an exciting budding rivalry.

Other top pacers this week include: Caviart Spencer (George Napolitano Jr., Eddie Sager), whose victory on Friday night over the $7,500 claimers gave him three straight victories and came in a career-best 1:52; Light Up The Sky (George Napolitano Jr., Marty Fine), who switched barns and still came up with his second straight win against the toughest claimers on the grounds Saturday night, this one in a career mark of 1:49; and Mustang Art (Kevin Wallis, James McGuire), a veteran pacer who put on a show on the front end on Saturday night with a mile of 1:48:3, best of his career and fastest this week at Pocono.


One of my little rules for writing this column is that I try to spread the wealth around in giving these awards. When a horse wins Pacer or Trotter of the Week once during a season, I usually disqualify them from winning it again. For Beatgoeson Hanover, I broke the rules, simply because it’s unusual for a horse to crash the record books twice in the same season.

Back in April, Beatgoeson Hanover, a five-year-old mare trained by Nifty Norman, matched a track record for aged trotting mares with a scintillating victory in 1:52:1. Yet on Saturday night in a Preferred trot with a $25,000 purse, Beatgoeson Hanover could only go off as a 3-1 second choice, because DW’s NY Yank, who also set a track record at Pocono earlier this season as a 4-year-old gelding, was the heavy favorite. Beatgoeson Hanover sat the pocket trip behind the favorite, who surprisingly caved in at the top of the stretch under pressure from the first-over move from Real Babe.

Driver Tyler Buter made a nifty move by swinging Beatgoeson Hanover out wide to elude her tiring cover and gather momentum for a rally. The mare did the rest, zipping by Real Babe to win by three-quarters of a length in 1:51:4. Not only did that reset her track mark, but it also set the world record for aged mares trotting on a five-eighths-mile oval. Maybe we bent the rules a little bit by handing out this award, but that performance was worth it.

Honorable mention on the trotting side goes to: Must Be Psychic (Anthony Napolitano, Scott Osterhout), who won his second straight claimer on Tuesday night, this one coming in a career-best 1:55:1 despite a move up in class; Hoorayforvacation (Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke), who scored a victory in Tuesday night’s featured claiming handicap trot in a career-best 1:53:4; and Raven De Vie (Matt Kakaley, Chris Ryder), who followed up his maiden win with another condition victory on Wednesday night in 1:56:1.


On Tuesday night with Mike Simons doing the driving, this trotter utilized a pcoket trip to rally for a victory over a $12,500 claiming class at 17-1 for a $37 win payout on a $2 win ticket.


McCarthy gets a lot of acclaim at Pocono for his ability to bring in long shots, but this week he was winning with every kind of horse, as evidenced by multiple driving victories on all four racing nights.


Part of the Canadian invasion of horsemen who have really made their mark on the 2013 season at Pocono, Fine stayed hot with a three-win week, including a double on Saturday.

That will do it for this week, but we’ll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at


Beatgoeson Hanover Breaks World Record in Win at Pocono

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

August 31, 2013

Beatgoeson Hanover rallied in the final strides to win the featured Preferred trot on Saturday night at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and set a world record for her age group in the process. The race carried a purse of $25,000.

Beatgoeson Hanover, a five-year-old mare from the barn of Nifty Norman, left from post position #5 in a field of six as the 3-1 second choice. She led at the quarter, then ceded the lead to 1-2 favorite DW’s NY Yank in the front stretch and worked the pocket. Real Babe made a powerful first-over move on the back stretch and cleared DW’s NY Yank in the stretch, but driver Tyler Buter alertly swung Beatgoeson Hanover wide in the stretch to beat Real Babe by three-quarters of a length. DW’s NY Yank faded to third.

With a winning time of 1:51:4, Beatgoeson Hanover, owned by Neven Botica, not only shattered her own track record for aged trotting mares of 1:52:1, a mark she shared with Brighten Up, but she also smashed the world record for that age group of 1:52, which was set by Premiere Steed in Finland in 2009. Beatgoeson Hanover, winner of six races this season and 25 lifetime, pushed her career earnings of $1,073,080.

Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs Week in Review

Sunday, May 5th, 2013

April 27-May 3, 2013

We start every year at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs with a fresh Track Records page at the back of the program showing off some of the finest performances ever at the track. And every year, by the end of the season, that page looks drastically different after a fresh batch of competitors hits the track and breaks or matches a bunch of those records. Our first interloper on the Track Records page for 2013 highlights this week’s edition of the Weekly Awards


This mare from the barn of Nifty Norman has had a distinguished career, earning close to $1 million in her lifetime, so she was certainly capable of a big effort. The down side was that she came into Saturday night’s condition pace for non-winners of $22,500 in the last five races without a win in her first four tries this season, although that was excusable considering the tough foes she had been facing at the Meadowlands.

On Saturday night, she had Ron Pierce in the bike, and Pierce decided he would be aggressive with the mare, sending her first over on the front stretch to take the lead by the half-mile marker. The fractions Beatgoeson Hanover laid down were unforgiving, which prevented any outside pressure from getting by her.

That kind of up-front speed often leaves a horse vulnerable in the stretch, but this mare was not to be denied. Pierce urged her home 1 ¼ lengths in front of Dontgetinhisway in a stunning time of 1:52:1. That matched the track record for trotting mares aged four years old and up, a mark originally set by Brighten Up in 2010. It won’t be the first time we see a track record in jeopardy this season, but it was still a thrilling effort by this marvelous mare.

Honorable mention on the trotting side goes to: Defiant Donato (Matt Kakaley, Jim Campbell), an impressive young filly with three straight wins to start her career after a rallying victory in a condition trot on Wednesday in a career-best 1:55:1; Fool’s Revenue (Jim Morrill Jr., William Mullin), who moved up in class to beat the $12,500 claimers on Tuesday night in 1:55:3, his second straight victory; and In Your Room (Mike Simons, Gail Wrubel), a mare who stepped up in class on Tuesday night but still rolled to her second straight condition win in 1:54:2.


Trainer and driver Daryl Bier only makes cameo appearances at MSPD, and he usually only makes the trip if he has a serious contender who can do some damage on the Pocono oval. As a result, he usually has a pretty excellent percentage of winners, and St Lads Zoom has been particularly tough to stop in the early parts of the meet.

The 4-year-old gelding was saddled with tough outside post positions in his first two starts at Pocono, but he acquitted himself well with a third and a win in those races. On Saturday night, he got a much better look at it with a #3 post position in a field of eight, but he also was moving up in class into a rugged non-winners of $24,000 the last five starts condition pace.

The good post allowed Bier to get St Lads Zoom Zoom in solid position in the pocket. In the stretch, the gelding did the rest, powering home for the victory in a thrilling stretch drive over favored Meirs Hanover in 1:51:2. St Lads Zoom Zoom has now won six of his nine races this season, just another efficient and effective performer from the Bier barn.

Other top pacers this week include: Pence Hanover (Andrew McCarthy, Aaron Lambert), who won the season’s first Preferred pace on Saturday night with front-end speed in a career-best 1:49:4; Mr Perseverance (Ron Pierce, Rene Allard), who moved up his claiming price to $25,000 yet still captured his second straight victory on Saturday night, this time in a career-best 1:50:3; and Lorrie Please (Eric Carlson, Michael Hall), a mare who captured the featured distaff pace on Sunday night with a gutsy effort in the stretch in 1:50:2, a new career-best.


The #9 post position didn’t scare away this gelding driven by John Campbell in a condition pace on Saturday night, as he won at 35-1 for a win payout of $72.80.


Pierce has been making more frequent appearances at Pocono and has been lethal. Consider the monster night he had on Saturday night when he notched seven wins.


Allard has been one of the hottest trainers on the grounds early in the season, and this week was no different, as he scored three wins including a double on Saturday night.

That will do it for this week, but we’ll see you at the track. Feel free to e-mail me at