Last year, too, the area's harness writers chose 21 year old Austin Siegelman as their Rising Star at the Mighty M. And it appears that the scribes are on the money again.
After he won the honor last fall Siegelman told a reporter of his hometown newspaper, the Citizen's Voice , "winning the Rising Star Award definitely gives me a lot of confidence going forward. I plan on being in this business for a long time and hopefully this is just the beginning of great things to come."
On Wednesday afternoon at the Mighty M, the youngster had his first hat trick of the season. He scored with Carribbean Pirate ($6.40)in 2:00.3 in the first race and then came back to cop the second with My Cinnamon Girl ($12.00) in 2:04.4. Siegelman's third win came when he guided In Regal Attire ($5.10)home first in a time of 2:04.1.
From a limited amount of starts thus far this season among Siegelman's 19 wins are victories in 'the big time' at Yonkers Raceway and the Meadowlands.
Last season he began driving horses for veteran trainerand their union has been good for both. It was with one of Marino's horses that the 21 year old Siegelman became the youngest driver to set a track record here when he guided Mymomsablizzard to a 1:57 victory which equaled the mark for older trotting mares at Monticello Raceway.
Again this season Siegelman is driving horses trained by Marino.
"Chris has some nice horses and I'm lucky to be driving for him," Siegelman said.
And Marino is high on Seigelman.
"He's a nice young man and he was brought up right," Marino said of Siegelman. "Although he's young he drives a horse really well. I'm very satisfied with what he has done for me."
Racing fans will definitely read about the future success of the 21 year old driver. And since he showed that he can handle himself against the leading drivers inNew York all he needs now is the stock to compete again them on a regular basis.
by John Manzi, for Monticello Raceway