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Sunday, February 26, 2017

Buffalo Raceway Weekly Recap for 2-26

Larry Stalbaum continues to lead the driver's standings at Buffalo Raceway after posting a seven-win week.
Larry Stalbaum

He had four victories on Wednesday not, surprisingly was blanked on Friday, but bounced back with a triple on Saturday. Stalbaum holds a 50-43 advantage over Shawn Gray.

Gray was shutout on Wednesday night, but had a win on Friday and added four more on Saturday.

David McNeight III is starting to heat up with triples on both Friday and Saturday night's programs.

Drew Monti had the most victories on a card during the week as he notched a five-bagger on Wednesday night. He also had a single trip to the winner's circle on Friday.

Ray Fisher Jr. had four wins during the week including a triple on Friday while John Cummings Jr. posted two wins on Friday.

Buffalo Raceway Driver's Standings (Wins, UDRS, Earnings)
1. Larry Stalbaum (50, .394, $247,421)
2. Shawn Gray (43, .371, $222,740)
3. Ray Fisher Jr. (38, .367, $198,226)
4. David McNeight III (21, .234, $104,898)
5. Drew Monti (19, .302, $79,462)
It was another dominating week for trainer Kim Asher as she registered six wins to extend her lead over JD Perrin by 17 victories, 37-20.

Asher had four wins on Wednesday night's card and added two more on Saturday.

Gerry Sarama had a good week as he scored doubles on both Friday and Saturday nights which pushed him into third place in the standings with 18 victories.

Perrin, Bo Sowers, and David McNeight Jr. all had three wins during the week.

There are a total of 20 different trainers that made the trip to the winner's circle.

Buffalo Raceway Trainer's Standings (Wins, UTRS, Earnings)
1. Kimberly Asher (37, .490, $172,469)
2. JD Perrin (20, .347, $95,773)
3. Gerry Sarama (18, .387, $92,058)
4. David McNeight Jr. (17, .361, $78,179)
5. David Russo (15,.371, $77,642)
China Dream is known for his late closing speed but a change in harness racing tactics paid off for him in Buffalo Raceway's $10,000 Open Pace on Saturday night (Feb. 25) by beating Itsonlyrocknroll A by 1-3/4 lengths in 1:55.4 over the good track.
China Dream and driver Shawn Gray take Open Pace.

In an uncharacteristic move, China Dream (Shawn Gray) fired off the gate and had to go three-wide to grab the lead as Gallant Major and Thunderbolt Jaxon played hard ball to the opening quarter.

After setting splits of 28.3, 57.3 and 1:26.4, China Dream ($8.40) opened up a commanding four length advantage turning for home and cruised to the throttled down victory over the favored Itsonlyrocknroll A (Larry Stalbaum). Knocking Around (David McNeight III) took the show position.

Co-owned by trainer Maria Rice and Jack Rice, China Dream (If I Can Dream-China Art) is a 6-year-gelding that has earned $14,620 in 2017 and $187,293 lifetime.

When Monster Cantab ($20.40) crossed the finish line in Buffalo Raceway's sixth race on Friday night (Feb. 23), it gave harness racing  trainer Philip 'Bo' Sowers his 1,000th career victory.

"It now puts me in a category that I never thought I'd ever reach when I started training," Sowers said of hitting that magical plateau.

Back in 2002, Sowers was training four horses as a hobby in Maine but this wife suggested he start doing it full time.

Bo Sowers and Andrew Harrington celebrate.
"I was driving a truck from 8 to 5 every day and wasn't enjoying it," he said. Now with 1,000 wins in the books and almost $3 million in purse earnings, Sowers is sure glad he made the switch.
While getting most of his victories in Maine at Scarborough and Bangor race tracks, Sowers was a little apprehensive about making the move to Buffalo Raceway this winter.

"I was asked by the Mo Coo Stables the past few years if I wanted to go to Buffalo Raceway and train," Sowers said. "I kept turning it down until this year and I am very happy I came here. I wondered how I'd be treated here because I was a newcomer but everyone has been absolutely great. They've welcomed me and have made me feel right at home. It's a closeness here like I felt back in Maine."

Sowers added that he'll be starting his quest for 2,000 victories in Western New York. "We have over 20 horses here and my wife and I decided a few days ago that we will be staying at Buffalo Raceway throughout the season. We love it here."

Osprey Vision ($9.10) wasn't going to be denied in Buffalo Raceway's first co-featured $8,200 trot as he gamely held off Kadabrasnewrecruit by a neck in 2:00.0 over the fast track.

In the second $8,200 trot, Winkys Pride (Drew Monti) was able to power by the pace-setting Northern Matador in the stretch and post the mild $11.60 upset in 1:58.3.

Wanna Rock N Roll couldn't win the battle for the lead off the starting gate but she ended up winning the war to the wire instead.
Wanna Rock N Roll takes Wednesday's feature.

Getting a first over trip, Wanna Rock N Roll proved much the best in Buffalo Raceway's $10,000 Open Pace for the harness racing mares on Wednesday night (Feb. 22) with a solid length victory over Susie's Delight in the seasonal best 1:56.3 over the fast track.

It was the fourth victory of the year in Open competition at Buffalo Raceway for Wanna Rock N Roll.

Deliciouslynaughty (Larry Stalbaum) and Susie's Delight (Ray Fisher Jr.) locked horns to the opening quarter in 28.4 while Wanna Rock N Roll (Drew Monti) managed to tuck into third.

But going past the half, Wanna Rock N Roll wasn't too happy and pulled out, zooming past the pace-setting Deliciouslynaughty to the top.

Going past the three quarter pole in 1:27.3, Monti and Wanna Rock N Roll ($3.70) enjoyed the unseasonably warm weather at the Hamburg half-mile oval the rest of the way. The remainder of the field scrambled for the minor awards with Susie's Delight taking second place and Scarlet N Silk (Kevin Cummings) rallying for third.
The winning post positions for the 34-race week were spread out with the one spot leading the way with eight victories while the three hole was next with seven. The seven and eight posts failed to produce a win.

Buffalo Raceway Post Position Winners: (Week/Year):
1.  8  (49)
2.  6  (38)
3.  7  (38)
4.  5  (46)
5.  4  (29)
6.  4  (20)
7.  0  (4)
8.  0  (3)
This past week, the winning favorites took 15 of the 34 races contested for a 43.33 percent average and the seasonal statistics has the top choice taking 97-of-247 for 25.6 percent.
There was no claims made out on Wednesday's races while three were made on Friday and five more on Saturday.
There were eight claims on the week.

Friday, Rocco Stebbins claimed trotter VIP for $5,500 with Joe Skowyra the trainer.

Also, Rocco and Ronald Stebbins grabbed pacer High Resolution for the $5,000 tag with Skowyra once again the conditioner.

Pacer Harmony Oaks Ruler went for $6,000 to Angelo L. Nappo with Angelo Nappo the trainer.

Saturday night was a busy night at the claim box.

In the opening race, pacers Adversary Seelster and Life's Lessons each found new barns for the $12,500 price tag. Adversary Seelster went to Irwin Kaplan with Bo Sowers the trainer with Life's Lessons headed to Eric Prevost with Sabrina Clevenger in charge.

Clevenger also picked up another client as Mark Jakubik purchased pacer  Release The Terror for $10,000.

There were two pacers who were $15,000 claims as well as Tessa Roland selected Montezuma Blue Chip with JD Perrin the conditioner and Babe's I Scoot went to Marissa Russo with David Russo in charge of the training.
On the handle side, Buffalo Raceway took in $226,235 on Wednesday night with $250,960 crossing the windows on Friday evening while $206,357 was wagered on Saturday. The total for the week was $683,552 with a nightly average of $227,850. The previous week, $758,709 was bet.
In the Championship Claiming Series, the top five point-getters are listed below through February 23rd.

H&G $4,000 Pacers                                            F&M $4,000 Pacers
1. Beachfront 155                                                 1. Kiddie McCardle 270
2. First Of Fun 154                                               2. Moccasin Blue Chip 250
3. Mcturesque 141                                                3. Fox Valley Lena 137
4. Goodnite Goodluck 124                                     4. Helena's Hope 128
5. Box Car Johnnie 120                                         5. Springhouse Star 112
H&G $5,000-$6,000 Pacers                                 F&M $8,000-$12,000 Pacers
1. Yosemite Camn 175                                          1. Iaquinta 175
2. Storybook 140                                                  1. That's My Dream 175
3. Warhorse 108                                                   3. Quicksilvercandy A 167
3. Royal Reception 108                                         4. Buttercup Baby 117
5. Jettison 100                                                     5. Deliciouslynaughty 87

H&G $8,000-$10,000 Pacers                                $4,000-$5,000 Trotters
1. Release The Terror 132                                     1. VIP 157 
2. Noble's Grand Slam 112                                    2. Take Heart 138
3. Button Fly 108                                                 3. Grecale AS 87
4. Saint William A 79                                            4. Iain'tnomomaluke 85
5. Ideal Affair 58                                                  5. Wild Ride 83

H&G $12,500-$15,000 Pacers                               $8,000-$12,500 Trotters
1. Peter Pumpkineater 175                                    1. Dash For The Cash 144
2. That Horse JD 158                                            2. The Bronx Bumper 100
3. Adversary Seelster 116                                      3. Limitless 75
4. War Front 100                                                   4. Tenor Duhara 60
5. In The Clear 86                                                 5. Trotting R T 50
In the 'Handicapping Challenge' between Buffalo Raceway track announcer Wayne Teaven and myself, Wayne leads the contest 89-70 through the sixth week.
I'd like to thank Buffalo Raceway track photographer for his great photos that he provides each week for Brian's Buffalo Raceway Selections. You can order any picture from Steve by going to his website of
It's time to make plans for the World Harness Handicapping Challenge at Buffalo Raceway on Saturday, March 18.
Challenge set for March 18th

There's a $10 entry fee and you must be a Player Rewards Card member, which is free to join. You'll also receive free past performances for Buffalo Raceway and The Meadowlands.

The winner of the Buffalo Raceway contest will receive $500 along with entry into the World Harness Handicapping Championship at the Meadowlands in April along with two nights hotel accommodations.

Complete rules for the one-day contest are available at
Pacers Beachfront and Kiddie McCardle lead the way at Buffalo Raceway this season with five victories apiece.

Itsonlyrocknroll A, Moccasin Blue Chip, That's My Dream, Wanna Rock N Roll and Yosemite Camn all have produced four wins.

The top earner is Itsonlyrocknroll A who has put $23,200 in the bank thus far in 2017 with Wanna Rock N Roll following closely with $20,000.

Trotter Perfect Rendition is a perfect 4-for-4 and is also the top purse earner among the side-winders with $18,200.
Buffalo Raceway will resume racing on Wednesday night at 5 p.m. with 12 races set to go to the post. There's a $2,347 Pick-5 carryover going into the program which starts in the second race.

There will also be racing on Friday night at 5 p.m. with Saturday set to go at 6 p.m.

Don't forget Happy Hour every live racing day with $4 specials.

Saturday night, head to the Winner's Circle Cafe where you can enjoy a great home style meal.

Also every Saturday is the Winter's Winner Circle contest where you can win a $50 betting voucher and a chance to win even more later in the season. Just select who you think is going to win the ninth race on Saturday's card and if that horse finishes in first, you have a chance to win.

Also, all outstanding vouchers and mutual tickets from 2016 must be cashed no later than March 31, 2017.

For more information on Buffalo Raceway including the latest news, notes, race replays and results, go to

Monday, November 14, 2016

Buffalo Raceway 2017 Schedule

Below is the 2017 Buffalo Raceway schedule which is set to begin on Wednesday, January 11th at 5 p.m. It's Buffalo Raceway's 75th Anniversary season.