Day At The Track

Anthony Haughan: Family, harness racing & soccer

06:24 AM 18 Sep 2014 NZST
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Anthony and Cian Haughan, harness racing Cheque The Magic, harness racing Rayo d Harness Racing
Anthony Haughan and his son Cian
Cheque The Magic and Anthony Haughan
Anthony Haughan winning at Portmarnock in Ireland with French trotter Rayo D'Amista
Nadina Ironia Photo
Meg, Cian and Anthony Haughan
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Anthony Haughan, an Ireland native, has a sure fire trifecta in his life; family, harness racing and Liverpool soccer. Whatever you do, never mention that you're a fan of Manchester United to Anthony! If you do, get ready for some good natured ribbing!

In the late 90's, Anthony decided to leave Ireland before the winter season to try his hand in harness racing in Canada. "In Ireland, there is no racing during the winter time so I had to come to Canada to get my racing fix" admits Anthony.

Shortly thereafter, Anthony went back home to Ireland however Canada must have had a special place in Anthony's heart as he returned to Canada in 2000. What was supposed to be a stay of only a few months turned out to be Anthony staying for good.

Good turned to become great as Anthony met Meg (who trains as well), his partner.

Anthony and Meg have a young son named Cian, (pronounced: Cane), who enjoys going to the race track to watch his dad in action. "Cian likes going to the barn and watching the horses. He likes coming to the races, though a little too often" says Anthony.

"During the summer, Cian plays soccer so I do what I can to make sure I can watch him play." Anthony says. "Meg and I, we both go and watch him."

Looking back over the years since coming to Canada, Anthony feels blessed to have made this transition for his career. "Making a living here doing what I love has been great." Anthony continues, "Not many people get to do a job they love, I'm very fortunate."

"To come here, coming from Dublin and to have as many wins that I have, it's special." Anthony says, "I am grateful to everyone who has given me an opportunity."

Aside from racing, training and family, Anthony is a director for the Ontario Harness Horse Association (OHHA).

"Guys come to me for help with Judge's infractions" says Anthony. "I will go and talk to the judges on their behalf or go in with them when they speak to the judge to support them. I like being involved."

"I'm a horseman, so I don't look out for just myself. I look out for all the horsemen". Anthony states.

Anthony is very honest about how he's handled his role with OHHA. "The older I've gotten, the better I am with handling situations. I think in the past I may have gone about it in the wrong way" Anthony continues, "As you get older and do a little more, you realize there's better ways to go about it."

How did Anthony get involved with OHHA? "I was approached and asked if I would be interested in becoming a director, which I was. I was voted in by the directors" Anthony says.

"You have to be available as much as you can" says Anthony. The biggest take away is Anthony does his best to help fellow horsemen; he takes pride in being there for others, offering advice or helping in any way possible.

At any workplace whether it be an office, factory or paddock, the essential part of enjoying what you do is having a light atmosphere with good personalities. So when it comes to having a laugh on race night, Anthony is game. "Sometimes we try to have fun with a guy if he is having a rough night. You spend so much time with drivers; it's like being on a football or hockey team." Anthony adds, "A lot of times you travel together and are in the locker room together yet we compete against one another. There's a fine line but I am friendly with everyone."

Knowing if a problem arises and you need help, it's good to know you're not alone. People like Anthony help reassure fellow horsemen that this is a team sport. A family.

by Roderick Balgobin, for Harnesslink.com 

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