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>Hughesville, PA --- After a rainout at Bedford got the 2018 Pennsylvania fair season off to a soggy start earlier in the week, the weather was cooperative at the Lycoming County Fair’s two-day event Saturday (June 23) and Sunday (June 24), which takes place in this northcentral Pennsylvania city not far from the “Little League” town of Williamsport.

The track had been worked on, reconfigured over the winter/spring season, and soon after the 3-year-olds got underway on Saturday, the times revealed that the track may have come up “short” in its refurbishing and re-measuring. An examination on Sunday confirmed this fact, so while the Saturday winners had those times disallowed, they got to keep the purse money that many of them earned quite impressively.

The dominant 2-year-old of 2017 on the fair circuit was Venier Hanover, with eight divisional track records and a tying of the all-age record at Wattsburg, (2:00.1). But in the last fair event of 2017, the Fair championship at The Meadows, Cirrus De Vie had Venier’s number, posting an upset triumph to the mutuel tune of $54.20. And it seems that Cirrus kept that number throughout the winner, because in the first fair contest for the two as sophomores, the Real Artist gelding again upended his more decorated foe, as one of trainer/driver Roger Hammer’s four winners on the day. Hammer co-owns Cirrus De Vie with Vicki Fair.

Hammer and Fair came back to win with the Explosive Matter trotting filly Blow Back while looking good in the process, and then breeder/owner/trainer/driver Hammer again was in the spotlight with the Delmarvalous pacing gelding Marvalous Falcon while taking a B Sire Stakes contest, in a style that would make you think he could fit right in with the As right now.

On Sunday, both winners in the freshman colt pace A section paced back to the impressive lines they have already shown. First, it was the Russell Hanover gelding Aflame Hanover, winning his first purse start in 2:04.2 from the second tier for driver Tony and trainer Linda Schadel, who are the co-owners. Then it was the Delmarvalous gelding Next Shot, already sporting a 1:58.1 win at The Meadows, who turned in a 2:04.1 mile in a race which featured back numbers of 59.1 – 29.3. Trainer/driver/owner Cory Kreiser had little to do in the bike but plan a schedule for the precocious 2-year-old.

On the pacing filly side, a sweep was effected by trainer/driver Dave Brickell, who knows a little bit about this division, as his work with Camera Lady showed a couple of years ago. The Well Said filly, Magic Speech, made her purse debut a successful one in 2:05.4, and then another daughter of Well Said co-owned by Brickell and Mitchell York, Crew Sock Hanover, needed only 2:08.1 to win her heat–only twelve seconds slower than the win she had posted recently at The Meadows.

Among the two-year-old trotters, the Muscle Massive filly Ridinonarainbow was the most advanced, winning in 2:07.2 for trainer/driver Todd Schadel, co-owner with Christine Schadel; none of the other five heats for baby trotters beat 2:11.

The quartet of winners Roger Hammer trained during three-year-old day gave him the lead in the conditioners’ colony; he also drove all four, and that number was matched by Steve Schoeffel, winning two races each day, as they are the joint early kingpins among the sulkysitters.

And it didn’t rain. And everyone hopes that the rain, rain stays away when the fair circuit moves on to Butler for racing this Thursday and Friday at 10 a.m.