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Author Topic: Billings Championships Friday at Meadowlands  (Read 1759 times)
Michigan Dale
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« on: November 22, 2005, 04:10:13 PM »

The first race on Friday's Big M card is the $40,000 Delvin Miller Gold Cup.  Its the culmination of another long season of Billings action and it shapes up to be a competitive event.   My word of caution/advice to those betting on this race.....remember its more about the driver than the horse (although a fine horse can't hurt!).
     Here are some thoughts:
1)  DONNEGAL - driver Bill Mulligan.   Horse and driver romped in the eastern regional finals and will be a contender.  Nice horse for a decent driver.
2)  BENGALI - Gets a doctor to drive.   Gastroenterologist as I recall.  Look to be in tough.
3)  DIAMOND DUST T - This horse ships in from Michigan with a under-rated driver that could surprise.   Brett Boyd can get the job done with a good trip just as he did at Balmoral Park a week ago Sunday.  Horse has been known to break at times though.
4)  PEMBROKE MARVEL - 10 time winner this year gets Alan Schwartz as driver.   Schwartz was Eastern Division series point leader and has Big M experience.   No slouch, these two.
5)  HORBY HUNTER - Florida REALTOR/Investor Dein Spriggs used to drive professionally, now only as an amateur and he and 10 time winner Horby Hunter will be formidable.   Spriggs led the nationwide combined Billings Series point standings this year and for good reason.   Give serious consideration.
6)  CANDACRAIGH - Could be a surprise ticket here.   Bob Troyer has the horse going well right now and has won 10 of 20 starts including a dead heat win a week ago in Chicago.  He figures to be out and rolling early on.  Will be hard to catch if they leave him alone early.
7)  KEYSTONE VICTORY - Anthony Verruso can upset but this horse has had a really tough time winning this year.   1 score in 32 starts.   Pass.
8)  DON CARLOS HANOVER -  Driver Brent Davis figures to be rolling late but I see this one as in too tough.  Horse has had some nice wins but other drivers I believe will outclass this young man.
9)  NIGHT'S JAZZ - USTA Chairman of the Board Smokin' Joe Faraldo won in tuning up for this race and he Joe finished a tight second in this event three years ago.   That, however, was then and from the 9 hole I think he's going to have a tough time,
10)  JEFF LETSGO - USTA and Big M site shows the same driver on this horse as is driving the #1!  Kinda hard to handle two horses in the same race so its a mistake and I don't know who will be driving.  Pass.
11)  ANOTHER LINDY - If not for the second tier he'd be right in the thick of things, I believe.   Ned Hodkinson dead-heated with Troyer and Candacraigh at Balmoral but that won't happen here.   Only chance is if he can weave through traffic early and find a spot close to the front in the late going.
12)  BINGHAM - Craftiest driver of them all handles the 10 year old gelding that has won 102 lifetime races.   12 hole does not bother.   Horse is not known for gate speed and Gene Miller has not problem driving from the second row.  Actually may work to their advantage.   Finished a fast closing third in Chicago after being involved in some close quarters and surviving an inquiry.   This twosome teamed up to win this race in 2002 and it would not suprise to see it happen again.   I expect to see some drivers handle the race as if it were a mile rather than the extended 1 3/16ths distance and that sets things up well for the likes of Bingham and Miller.   Watch for them in the outer flow!
Good Luck to all.....

As for the non-wagering consolation, its fortunate we just watch and don't bet this one.   Wide open affair.   Racy Star G and Byzanz are from the Spriggs/Hodkinson team with Robert Krivilin and Tom Williams driving.....Rompaway Ulaine and Crafty Sailor are both Gene Miller trainees and have David Ehrenberg and David Drew driving with both starting from the inside.....Like Nothing Else has former Billings Champ Bud Hatfield at the lines.....Chicago George Bonomo and daughter Michelle Ruvola handle Balanced Serenade and Jason Challenger and then there's ICU Tallkin with Northfield Race Secretary Greg Keidel driving.....Stars Photo has won over $46,000 and gets William Varney as driver and the field is rounded out by KW's Champion (Steve Markoff), Perfect Gerry (Tabitha Reeve) and Thunder Shower with Robert Hechkoff.
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Chitown Stan
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« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2005, 05:55:47 PM »

I thought Billings was for amateur drivers?? These guys have been amateurs for 50 years. They should keep these things off the betting card, they are jokes.
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Les Moore
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« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2005, 12:09:06 AM »

Thanks for the info Dale. I always like to put a couple of dollars on Gene Miller in these Billings events. These guys have a special love for the sport.
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Michigan Dale
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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2005, 09:28:33 AM »

They're no joke and frankly when you follow them (The Billings races) you can score some big hits.   I've 'given' some advice to numerous people and they virtually all have cashed some significant tickets.   Please don't confuse "amateur" with "novice."   The misconception is that Amateur means inexperienced, novice, no skills, just learning, etc.   This isn't the case with the Billings Series.   Several in there on Friday night drive somewhat regularly at pari-mutual tracks throughout the country.   Some are really really good and have scored literally hundreds of wins.   Not all, but quite a number of them.   These amateurs mostly race their own or borrowed horses for love of the sport and "amateur" in the Billings is defined as "one who has not accepted any valuable consideration by way of or in lieu of compensation for services as a driver from a third party in the past ten years."  Its one race....some of us enjoy them, others don't.   Just a matter of preference.  Its just one aspect of a diverse sport, no different than different conditions put out for races.   There are some conditions you really hone in on, others you discard as bad races.  Thankfully, the Big M sees the value of adding the $40,000 Final to its race card.   I applaud that.   It takes all kinds of people to put on a show and not everybody can be a star or big name like Pierce, Campbell, Miller, etc.   Just my three cents worth, gang.   I'm saving my dollars for investing Friday night.
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SUPERMAN
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« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2005, 10:09:51 AM »

I thought Billings was for amateur drivers?? These guys have been amateurs for 50 years. They should keep these things off the betting card, they are jokes.

These races are why harness racing as a hole goes backwards instead of forwards. The races are stupid and dangerous and should "NEVER" be made a betting race for the public. If they want to make it a betting interest they should hold them in "CENTRAL INDIANA" better known as "AMISH LAND" so that the Amish can bet a corn stalk or a peach pie to win place and show. If their going to hold races like this as betting races than they should start letting the public bet on qualifiers and have a race with drivers that are 80 years old or older as a betting interest. STUPID FUxxing Races run by stupid Fucxxng people. Tongue Tongue Tongue
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Chitown Stan
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« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2005, 10:16:48 AM »

I was told there was a horrible incident at Monticello a few weeks back when a horse actually fell into a drainage ditch because this billings guy (steinberg) had no clue what the hell he was doing. He was taken out on a stretcher and the poor horse had to be euthanized. Some of these guys have egos the size of whole states too. I heard that Peter Garry isnt a very well liked individual, and Nasty Ned Hodkinson is barred from a few racetracks. If you want these billings, they should be restricted to county fairs only.
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SUPERMAN
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« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2005, 10:32:21 AM »

          Like I said before they should race these races only in Amish land.

          And here is how they should pay out the purse money

1rst place- -- choice of Sex with your sister and/or mother
2nd place--- choice of Sex with a farm animal large or small
3rd place ---- no beard or hat for 3-months
4th place ---- a year supply of playboy magazines with hand lotion
5th place --- a full punkin pie

6th - 10th a choice of what kind of pie you should be hit with. Cherry, blueberry, blackberry, peach, etc.

Now were talking Shocked
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Michigan Dale
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« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2005, 10:43:16 AM »

You guys are way too funny.   Makes me want to split a gut.   We've now been so enlightened.   Never before realized that accidents only happen in Billings races......Billings races are somehow akin to being Amish......harness racing is going backwards because there are those that fully support the sport.....big egos are only attributable to Billings drivers.   Now, to fully understand all the truly intelligent things that have been said......here's what we've learned:   There are no big egos among the professional elite drivers.....accidents never occur involving the sports cream of the crop.....there are no Amish folks in mainstream professional racing.....and somehow the sport will move forward and get better by not spotlighting anybody or anything other than the current hierarchy and racings elite.   One would have to surmise that once they all retire or die, there will be no further harness racing.   We can all sleep better now having been so enlightened.   Come Friday night though, I will momentarily revert to my old ways, cash some tickets and have the time of my life enjoying the Gold Cup at the Meadowlands while watching the egotistical accident prone Amish ply their trade.
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SUPERMAN
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« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2005, 12:18:08 PM »

        Hey !!!, Jump in Lake Michigan Dale. Do they show minor league sports on National Tv Huh? Do they highlight these races on TVG Huh? I think not. They suck and have amatuer "bustout drivers in them" that actually hurt the sport and not help it. Like I said before THEY SHOULD race for AMISH PIES and maybe you should go along for being a "TOTAL GOOF".
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Michigan Dale
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« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2005, 12:32:56 PM »

Faster than a speeding bullit, leaping one story buildings with a single bound I want to thank you for elevating me to 'goof' status.   You're making my day.   Laughing even harder.   What a great diversion this is being lambasted by the likes of the man of steel that changes clothes in a phone booth and in an alley way and bends paper clips with his bare hands.....my hero.   I've waited all these years to get the attention of the Daily Planet.   Say hello to Lois and Jimmy and Perry.
Gosh this is funny......and long the Billings.   As long as we keep talking about it its going to flourish.  Let's keep up with the fun....oh, look here I just got a Fed Ex order of Kryptonite.   Now let's see....what is that used for?
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Michigan Dale
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« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2005, 12:37:00 PM »

Like Columbo, another hero of sorts, 'just one more thing....' Yes, they do show minor league sports on National TV.    They even show the Little League World Series (I find that enjoyable too, but what's to be expected from a 'goof'), dog races in Alaska, poker and blackjack tournaments (really exciting stuff you know), international dog shows (nothing against Fido and Rover), bowling, amateur golf, and of course world class fishing tournaments just to mention a few.
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SUPERMAN
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« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2005, 01:21:56 PM »

 Okay your right. I think the Billings should be on National TV too. This way the people that love auto crashes could watch and see amateur clowns crash into each other and maybe crash and die. That would be great for the already dying sport of harness racing. Like I said before "GET A CLUE" Shocked
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SUPERMAN
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« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2005, 12:28:24 AM »

 The name of this race should be changed to the DINGALINGS. WHAT A PERFECT NAME FOR THESE HORRIBLE DRIVERS.   Wink Cheesy
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