Although Hawthorne Race Course will race just 37 nights during the 2006 season, it is announcing its most ambitious stake schedule in their renowned history of harness racing meets.
Beginning on opening night, Friday, May 6 and concluding on Saturday, June 17, a total of 17 late-closing stake events will be offered with final purses ranging from $50,000 to over $100,000.
Hawthorne's two signature races, the Erwin F Dygert Memorial Open Trot and the Robert F Carey Memorial Open Pace will both go postward for the first time on the same card, closing night, Saturday, June 17, both with estimated purses expected to exceed $100,000.
For the first time in its storied history, Hawthorne will host a series of Grand Circuit races, which are aptly named the "World Series".
The "World Series" Grand Circuit Stakes, all with an estimated purse of $50,000, will begin during Hawthorne's final week of racing and will kick off on Wednesday, June 14 with a pair of open stakes for 2-Year-Old colt trotters and 3-Year-Old filly trotters.
On Thursday, June 15, Hawthorne will offer Grand Circuit stakes for 2-Year-Old filly trotters and 3-Year-Old colt trotters. A pair of "World Series" events will go to the gate on Friday, June 16, for 2-Year-Old filly pacers and 3-Year-Old filly pacers. On closing night, Saturday, June 17, Grand Circuit races for 2-Year-Old colt pacers and 3-Year-Old colt pacers will be offered in addition to the Dygert and Carey Finals.
Illinois Conceived and Foaled harness stars will be showcased once again in Hawthorne's 2nd Annual "Night Of Champions" on Saturday, June 3.
Seven different divisions will slug it out in a series of two legs leading to $50,000 estimated finals. Last year Hawthorne's "Night Of Champions" featured both 2 and 3-Year-Old performers in all eight divisions. However, this year, because of Hawthorne's abbreviated meet which ends in mid-June, the 2006 version of the "Night Of Champions" will feature four divisions of 3-Year-Olds and three divisions of older performers.
The events are all named after Illinois Bred horses who have stamped their name in Illinois harness racing history. They are:
3-Year-Old Filly Trot - The Silhouette Star
3-Year-Old Colt Trot - The Brandenburg
3-Year-Old Filly Pace - The Plum Peachy
3-Year-Old Colt Pace - The Hothead
4-Year-Old & Up Trot - The Eddy Oakley
4-Year-Old & Up F&M Pace - The Loyal Opposition
4-Year-Old & Up H&G Pace - The Jimmys Pilot
n addition, Hawthorne will offer The White Sox Pace, The Cubs Pace and the Muscles Marinara Trot during the first two weeks of the meet. All three events have $10,000 eliminations and $25,000 estimated finals.
The four popular pacing series' - The Forest View, The Stickney, The Berwyn and The Cicero will once again be offered on an overnight basis for the non-winners to be claimed horses with finals estimated to be $15,000.
Finally, Hawthorne will also introduce its "Claim To Fame" series in six different divisions on an overnight basis.
The "Claim To Fame" series will be offered for $5,000 claimers, $5,000 F&M claimers, $10,000 claimers, $10,000 F&M claimers, $15,000 claimers and $20,000 claimers. The finals for these six series will go postward during the final week of the meet with estimated purses ranging from $15,000 to $40,000.
All in all, it will be an action-packed 37 nights of harness racing on the Chicagoland circuit with something offered for all ranges of standardbred performers. Hawthorne will race six nights a week during their six week meet with Monday being a dark day. For more information contact Dan Poprawski at (708) 780-3668.
ourtesy Of Dan Poprawski for Hawthorne Race Course