Day At The Track

President Tim’s Fall Newsletter September 2017

05:56 AM 23 Sep 2017 NZST
Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print
USHWA Pres Tim Bojarski, Harness Racing
USHWA Pres Tim Bojarski

Congratulations to the new Hall of Famers. Well, we just announced the newest inductees voted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame, and the four individuals could not be more deserving.

Congratulations to Jules Siegel and Margareta Wallenius-Kleberg, who are going into the Hall, and to Carl Becker and Dave Briggs, who are going into the Communicators Hall.

Jules Siegel and his late wife Arlene established Fashion Farms in eastern Pennsylvania, acquired first-rate broodmares and bred them to top sires to achieve successful racehorses.  Siegel has raced Hambletonian winner Tagliabue along with eight Dan Patch Award champions and five Breeders Crown winners including Broadway Hall, Broadway Schooner and Broadway Donna.

Margareta Wallenius-Kleberg is the first woman elected to the Hall of Fame. She is the owner of Menhammar Stuteri AB, the leading breeder in her native Sweden, which has been in her family for 70 years. Wallenius-Kleberg also created a North America-Europe comingling of racing and breeding talent with her partner, the late Hall of Famer Norman Woolworth, headed by champion horses such as Mack Lobell.

Carl Becker began his career in harness announcing in 1963 and became in-demand with major tracks like DuQuoin IL, where he called the Hambletonian and World Trotting Derby, and The Red Mile where he announced Niatross’s historic 1:49.1 time-trial.

Dave Briggs achieved journalistic success through his award-winning work as editor of the Canadian Sportsman magazine. In the last couple years Briggs has been in charge of Harness Racing Update, the online racing newsletter. Briggs is also a nine-time Hervey Award winner for excellence in harness journalism; the next highest total for an individual is five.

Siegel, Wallenius-Kleberg, Becker and Briggs will all be honored at the 2018 Dan Patch Awards Banquet, to be held at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando, FL on Sunday February 25, 2018. They then will be enshrined at the Hall of Fame in Goshen NY on Sunday, July 1, 2018.

USHWA helps to rebuild Goshen Historic Track

After the devastating fire that completely destroyed barns and a blacksmith shop at Goshen Historic Track, the Executive Board of USHWA met and unanimously agreed to donate $5,000 to help rebuild the oldest operating harness racing track in the world, which is listed as a National Historic Landmark.

The Officers wanted to take a lead role in the industry and help provide GHT a hand in getting the track back to where it should be, and we hope that others within the sport follow our example and donate what they can to keep this historic property open and operational for generations of racing fans to come.

USHWA to be a sponsor of the Breeders Crown at Hoosier Park

For the first time ever, USHWA will be a sponsor for the Breeders Crown, to be held at Hoosier Park in October. Because of the generosity of Hoosier Park, who was the title sponsor of our Dan Patch Awards Banquet this past February in Las Vegas, the Officers decided it was important to support them now as they host their very first Breeders Crown, along with showing our support for all the participants of the races themselves. Our name will be prominently shown on the grooms’ gear, namely the fleece jackets they will be provided with; our organization’s name will be on the chest and down the arms. We will also have a full-page color USHWA ad in the Breeders Crown program.

Proximity nominations are due next month

Please keep in mind that the first nomination deadline of the fall comes up on Tuesday, Oct. 13, for the Bergstein/Proximity Award (250-500 word biography per nominee, one per chapter). These nominations need to be reviewed by the Integrity Committee and the Directors before being returned to the membership for final voting. So it is important that the original deadline be met in order to keep in line with other year-end award announcements.

… so Plan a Chapter meeting NOW!

With the Proximity nominations due then, if your Chapter can mobilize for a meeting very soon, that may be best. If not, with all the year-end award nomination and voting activities just around the corner, it would be a great time to plan a Chapter meeting to get “all your ducks in a row.” Also make sure you let Secretary Connors know who your Directors are for 2017-2018 so we have a record we can refer to when it comes to reimbursements in February.

New website is in trial mode

We are literally days away from the release of our new website. It is up and running in a faux-domain until we get it tweaked and finally released. Look for a release as soon as we go live.

2018 Budget is currently being drafted

Tom Hicks and the Budget Committee are currently putting together the final touches on the 2018 financial plan. This year we are on target to make a profit commensurate with the projections presented to the Directors – and, depending on what transpires with banquet sponsorships prior to the end of the year, could go higher. Our principal organizational functions this year have stayed on point, and we thank everyone involved for their work in that achievement.

Dan Patch Awards host hotel reservation portal now open

The USHWA-only reservation portal for the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando is now live on our website, and you can now make your plans to attend the National meetings and Dan Patch awards banquet the last weekend in February. Please keep in mind that as every year, a limited number of rooms will be available at the discounted rate, and making an early reservation may be a good idea.

Don’t forget about Items for the DPA Silent and Live Auctions

As was mentioned in my previous newsletters, you are aware that we annually hold a silent auction to help fund not only the business of USHWA, but also the Harness Horse Youth Foundation and the Clyde Hirt Workshop. 

In recent years, the items that have been made available to us for this auction have dwindled severely, and we need your help and support to turn the tide. 

This is a call to EVERY USHWAN! 

Please take a minute of your day to call a business, hotel, sport team, industry outlet, race track, farm, distributor, anyone or anything you can think of and try to get donations for this auction, so we can more adequately support the worthy causes that the proceeds are put towards. 

To date, I have only received a response from Dave Brower, Melissa Keith, and Matt Sparacino with offers of auction items. I know it’s early, but it’s never too early to help the organization. Whether you attend the banquet or not, it would help the functions of the organization immensely if everyone got just one donation of any value to put into this auction.

I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming fall weather and all the great stake racing that is yet to come. I also hope I run into many USHWA members at the Breeders Crown at Hoosier Park next month as it promises to be one of, if not THE, best presentation of this stake ever.

 Inline image 3

Tim Bojarski

President of USHWA

Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print

Read More News About...

Stallion Name

Next article: