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Rock N Roll Heaven draws post four for the Messenger Stakes
Tuesday, November 2, 2010 - by Frank Drucker, publicity director, Yonkers Raceway

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Yonkers, NY --- Rock N Roll Heaven, the richest harness horse this season, drew the penultimate post position, No. 4, for Saturday night's $437,100 Messenger Stakes.

The 55th edition of the Messenger -- third jewel of the Pacing Triple Crown -- wraps up Yonkers Raceway's stakes season and will go as the eighth race, at approximate post 9:40 p.m., eastern, on the 13-race card. First post is the usual 7:10 p.m.

The connections of Rock N Roll Heaven -- owner Frank Bellino of nearby Bronxville, N.Y., that is -- took $60,000 from the colt's $1.8 million war chest to supplement to the Messenger. For the season, the son of Rocknroll Hanover has 13 wins -- including seven in a row -- two seconds and one third in 18 starts. He's won the $500,000 Breeders Crown Final, along with the $604,100 Little Brown Jug, winning first and second heats in identical, 1:49.2 efforts, and will make his local debut off a win in last month's $604,000 Tattersalls at the Red Mile.

Bruce Saunders trains and Dan Dube drives the Harness Horse of the Year favorite, who has won 17-of-27 career starts and more than $2.4 million.

One More Laugh, who counts the million dollar Meadowlands Pace, in which he nailed Rock N Roll Heaven on the money, and Yonkers' $294,965 Art Rooney among his seven-win, $1.3 million season, landed outside of his four rivals. He is the sport's second-richest pacer this season, and finished a hard-charging second to Rock N Roll Heaven in that aforementioned Tattersalls event.

Trainer Ray Schnittker shares ownership -- with Creative Racing Stable and Jerry Silva -- of the McArdle gelding, One More Laugh's breeder and co-owner, Mathias Meinzinger, died earlier this week.

Tim Tetrick, who won this race a season ago behind If I Can Dream, has the assignment.

Two-time New York Sire Stakes winner He's Gorgeous, who has enjoyed tremendous success in Westchester, landed post No. 3. He brings a .680 lifetime batting average (17-for-25) into this event. The Art Major colt is owned by Ken Jacobs, trained by Linda Toscano and driven by George Brennan.

Tobago Cays (Cat Manzi) and Urgent Action (Jason Bartlett) have the inside two slots..

The companion event to the Messenger Stakes, the $326,680 Lady Maud Pace for soph fillies, will go as Saturday night's sixth race, at approximately 9 p.m.

The purse was bolstered by a trio of $30,000 supplemental entrants, in the New York Sire Stakes Final winner, Anndrovette, Cannaie Cammie and Naughtytiltheend.

The field for the Lady Maud, in post position order with declared drivers, includes Barks Like a Dog (Ray Schnittker), Cannae Cammie (Daniel Dube), Hula's Z Tam (Patrick Lachance), It's De Lovely (Jeff Gregory), Naughtytiltheend (Andy Miller), Discoverer (Jason Bartlett), and Androvette (Jason Bartlett also listed).

Hula's Z Tam, a New York Sire Stakes Final winner at age two, has career earnings of just under $600,000, while It's De Lovely won this season's Lismore Pace here.

Note that Discoverer and Naughtytiltheend, both trained by Erv Miller, will race uncoupled due to bona fide separate ownership.


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