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Fundraising efforts for injured Anthony Coletta continue
Wednesday, November 27th, 2013 - Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness

Horsemen across the country and Canada are coming to the aid of Anthony Coletta, who was seriously injured on November 17 in an accident at Harrah’s Philadelphia racetrack, and Cal Expo is no exception.
Steve Wiseman and Robin Clements have spearheaded local fundraising efforts for Coletta, who suffered critical head trauma along with a broken pelvis, hip and elbow. This will be the second weekend they will be raising money to help with the costs associated with his care and recovery.
“I met Anthony at Plainridge in 2007,” Wiseman related. “At the time he had just taken out his license and I did some driving for him. Over the years, we’ve become good friends and when I found out about this accident and his condition, I went to Robin and asked her if we could put together something to help.”
Steve was among the drivers who donated all of his driving fees last weekend, something which has been taking place at many harness tracks in the last two weeks. Anthony Coletta’s good friend and fellow trainer Anthony Defransesco is coordinating these efforts.
“Anthony has sent out wristbands that we will be selling this week for $5 each,” Wiseman noted. “They will be available on both the backside and the frontside and hopefully we’ll have a nice check to send from Cal Expo at the end of the week.”

CHHA horsemen’s representative Robin Clements added, “When Steve told me about Anthony and wanting to help, I never blinked an eye. This was a tragic accident to a fellow horseman and driver with a bright future. We don’t race for a lot out in California, but one thing about the horsemen out here, their hearts are huge! So when I started going around about the fundraiser everyone dug into their pockets! We all wish Anthony a speedy recovery and our thoughts and prayers are with him during this critical time.”
Watch and Wager LLC General Manager Chris Schick said, “It’s great to see the harness industry rally for one of their own, and Cal Expo is happy to play even a small role in that effort.”
Pair of Invitationals, Sire Stakes headline program
The Louis GG Perego Memorial Pace featuring Haggin Oaks and Show Runner; an Invitational Trot headed by Inside Broadway and Frank’s Best and a $10,000 California Sire Stakes for the 3-year-old trotters are on tap at Cal Expo Friday night.
Haggin Oaks and Show Runner are both going in razor-sharp form and drew for the assigned No. 7 and 8 posts the for the Perego Memorial. Haggin Oaks has accounted for three of her four appearances at the meet, with her only setback coming when she had a tough trip from the demanding 10 post two weeks ago and had to settle for second. James Kennedy reins and trains the mare for Shari Burns, Ferris Funk and Gerald Cimini.
Show Runner is eying the hat trick Friday while gunning for her 16th win on the season from 30 outings for owners Denise Maier and Eileen Brodbar and driver/trainer Tim Maier. The 3-year-old daughter of Little Steven was a 1:52 3/5 victress at Running Aces this summer and is coming off a handy Sire Stakes last week over her peers.
Rounding out the field are Lady’s Art, to be handled by Chip Lackey; Cammi Place with Mooney Svendsen at the controls; and Sea Bug, who leaves from the cozy rail slot with Luke Plano guiding.
Looking at the Invite Trot, Inside Broadway has accounted for two of the last three clashes at the head of the class for the division for owner/breeder/trainer Bob Johnson and pilot James Kennedy. He did the track and attack to get the job done on October 26, then took matters into his own hands at most recent asking with a game coast-to-coast decision.
Frank’s Best gives the Johnson barn another strong look at the outcome with Mooney Svendsen handling the lines. The 6-year-old son of Armbro Scribe comes into this assignment with a slew of stakes trophies on his mantle and $180,000 in earnings and has captured two of his five appearances at this meeting. Axle, K D Amazin Spirit, Silverlode and Sharpshootnnorris complete the cast.
The Sire Stakes will go as a non-betting event prior to the regular program and they will line up this way: Jewel Of Lodi (Chip Lackey); Lightning Of Lodi (Pierre Girard); Tour Guide (Steve Desomer); Freedombird (Luke Plano) and More Tequila (James Kennedy).