Chester, PA — This Sunday afternoon (May 26) Harrah’s Philadelphia will be proud to present the best racing card of its 2024 season, and arguably one of the top programs anywhere in North America to date this year, when $657,571 will be on the line during a star-studded 16-race card that begins at 12:40 p.m.

Here’s an overview of the three $100,000 Invitational events for the fastest established performers in the sport, along with third leg action of Pennsylvania Sire Stakes/Stallion Series racing for the 3-year-old pacing males, plus other top racing on the Super Sunday card:

$100,000 Betsy Ross Invitational Mares Pace (Race 11)

The attention in the Betsy Ross will likely be focused on two horses. One is Twin B Joe Fresh, a $1.4 million winner at two and three while having many memorable battles with archrival Sylvia Hanover. Second to the streaking male pacer Macs Delight in her 2024 bow here last week and a winner of the Fan Duel Pace against older adversaries last year, Twin B Joe Fresh will be starting from post three Sunday, with Dexter Dunn slated for sulky duty for trainer Chris Ryder.

Lit De Rose has won over $260,000 already in 2024, with roughly half of those earnings resulting from her victory in the Blue Chip Matchmaker Series final at Yonkers last month. Herself an earner of nearly $1.2 million in her career, Lit De Rose will begin from post five for trainer/driver Pat Lachance.

$100,000 Maxie Lee Memorial Trot (Race 12)

Hillexotic won the 2023 Maxie Lee Trot in 1:50.2, equaling the 2014 mile of Market Share as the fastest trotting clocking ever at Harrah’s Philly. He set the pace in the recent Cutler Memorial at The Meadowlands before tiring, but earlier he posted four straight wins over two seasons, including a win in the Dayton Derby. Both driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke have won the Lee four times, including last year’s success with Hillexotic, so they know the way to the Philly winner’s circle as their horse begins from post two.

Hillexotic has earned over a million dollars, as has Venerate; Amigo Volo has bankrolled over $2 million. But sure to attract some notice is a horse who has yet to amass $100,000: Benjamin Hanover, who on April 25 here set a 4-year-old trotting gelding track record of 1:51.2, and who won last week at The Meadowlands in 1:50.3.

$100,000 Joseph Auger Memorial Pace (Race 13)

Last year in the Auger Memorial Ruthless Hanover paced the fastest time ever over a five-eighths-mile track when he toured the Philly oval in 1:46.3. He made his seasonal debut last week after being away from the races for six months, and all he did was go right out and win in 1:47.1. He stands as the horse to beat for driver Andrew McCarthy and trainer Tom Cancelliere.

The horses on the far inside and far outside seem to have the best chance against Ruthless Hanover. Desperate Man is five-for-six in 2024, losing only when parked the mile in the Borgata final and still third; having to surmount the far outside in his 2024 bow will be Bythemissal, last year’s Dan Patch Award champion older pacing male. Desperate Man is a millionaire; Bythemissal has earned over $2 million.

Other Highlight Races

The third preliminary of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes and Stallion Series will be held Sunday, with three divisions of the $154,571 Sire Stakes and six $20,000 Stallion Series sections. Each has one division that on paper seems tougher than the others.

In the Sire Stakes, the tenth race cut features Captain Albano, last year’s 2-year-old Dan Patch Award pacing male champion who won a Sire Stakes in his debut at Pocono last week; Breeders Crown champion Gem Quality, another PaSS winner at Pocono and also triumphant in a PA All-Stars race at that track in his two starts this year; plus two horses who have won Sire Stakes leg each, Booming Economy and Sweet Beach Life. Rush In, the only double Sire Stakes winner, draws away from the “toughies” in race four.

In the Stallion Series action, Women Layer, undefeated in five starts this year including his two StS contests to date (the only double winner) and an All-Stars division, squares off in race nine against Stallion Series leg winners Copperfield and War Machine.

There is a $50,000 Invitational pace called the #senditin Philadelphia pace, with a field that would be the envy of most every racetrack on this continent. Andrew McCarthy and Tom Cancelliere team up again behind another major player, Maximus Miki, 10-6-2-2 this year and coming off a 1:48 victory at The Meadowlands. Millionaires Backstreet Shadow and I Did It Myway are also in the #senditin.

Serious fans of great harness racing will want to be checking out the Super Sunday card at Harrah’s Philadelphia. Free Philly programs are or will be available at

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