Day At The Track

17-year-old starts up public racing syndicate

08:49 AM 09 May 2014 NZST
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Jack Hurley, harness racing Phantom Racing Stables logo.jpeg jack Hurley web page.jpg
Jack Hurley handicapping the races

There is a new “kid” on the block in harness racing

There is a new harness racing syndicate starting in upstate New York called Phantom Racing Stables. 

What makes it unique is that it is being started by a young harness racing enthusiast, seventeen-year-old Jack Hurley of . Jack has been going to the races since he was seven. He sees a lot of things that racing partnerships can improve upon.

Jack hopes his fresh approach will set a new standard for horse racing partnerships. He wants to bring technology, passion, integrity, and communication to Phantom Racing Stables.

"I started to go to the track when I seven with my dad," said Jack. "I just got hooked on it. I used to go down by the rail and talk to the drivers and get autographs. My dad would place some wagers for me and I did pretty good. I am on the net all the time following the sport. I know what I am doing.”

What does Jack bring to the table that other partnerships have lacked? There have been many partnerships that claim they are the top of the line in the sport with the VIP Stables as the biggest and over the years.  

"Most partnerships have a bad reputation," he said. "I wanted to change the face of partnerships. There is a lack of communication and integrity in most partnerships. 

"We just finished all the paperwork for the partnership last week," said Jack. "The company is technically owned by my mother. I am legally the manger of the company. I will make all the decisions.

"We have the bank account all set up and ready to go." stated Jack.  "We are ready to make our first move in the next several weeks. We have three other parties involved in the partnership already, and many more interested.

"We are looking to make our first claim at Saratoga Harness." said Jack. "We are talking to a few trainers up there. We are talking to Gary Levine and Rob Harmon. Nothing is set in stone yet. We are taking it one step at a time. I watch all the races and replays. I am on it.

Jack admitted he has also been turned down by some trainers mainly because he is so young and has yet to prove himself within the industry, which is true.

He is charging a 15% management fee that may seem high within the industry, but the proof will be in pudding as they say and if Jack can pull it off then the sky’s the limit for the youngster who is still not old enough to wager at a pari-mutuel facility.

"We need to get young people involved personally with the horses."

said Jack. "It is a rough sport. I wish I had the answer to how we can interest more young people and get them into the sport. It is the million dollar question.

"Phantom Racing is up on Facebook," said Jack. "We have over 800 likes. Our newsletter is active every 2 weeks with 50 members and growing. We need to get more people involved in the sport. Once people get up close to the horses they will follow it more often.Everyone can check it out at"

The positive spirit that flows from young Jack Hurley is very infectious. The honesty and enthusiasm are real. We hope to follow their progress in the coming months. 

Jack is really going at it full blast while he is still in high school as he is also venturing into Thoroughbred partnerships too.

Will Phantom Racing be making some claims this season? It remains to be seen. All the pieces are in place to do so. Will harness racing take a bite out of Jack Hurley or will Jack take a bite out of racing? Only time will tell…and that’s the facts Jack!

by Brian McEvoy, for

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