The eighth race on Monday (Nov. 15) at Plainridge Racecourse was a special race, for it was in memory of Stephen Thompson and in the winner's circle was his brother, Kevin, presenting an award to the winning harness racing trainer D.T. Sumner.
Stephen Thompson passed away earlier this year and was a member of the USTA for over 30 years. He started out working for Bob Tisbert for 20 years and then proceededon his own for the next 10 years as an owner, trainer and driver.
He had two favorite horses and the first one was Prince Roger, a $2,500 claimer that was not only the family pet, but also was Stephen's first winner. The horse would walk alongside Stephen without a lead shank at the farm. They kept the horse for a very long time.
His other favorite was Overkiss, who he claimed for $2,500 and improvedso that he raced with the $12,500 claimers and on one occasion his time in a race was faster than the Open class horses that raced earlier that night.
He was a highly respected horseman, acknowledged by Bruce Ranger, Bill O'Donnell, Jim Doherty, Ted Wing and Jim Winters.
He retired to Florida before his passing. He has been sadly missed by his friends and family.
HARDY WINS THREE ON MONDAY
It doesn't seem to matter what type of day it is, because Jim Hardy is ready for anything atPlainridge Racecourse. It was overcast and the sky looked like it was about to open up, but fortunately it held off and the races went off without a hitch.
Hardy nailed the early Daily Double, winning the first race aboard Fox Valley Shyboy ($20.00) for trainer George Ducharme and owner Michelle Larson in a time of 1:55.3. In the second race he was aboard Nifty Norman ($3.00), a horse he trains himself for owner Jolene Andrews, who won in a time of 1:56.3. The early double of 3-4 paid $32.80.
His third victory came in the fifth race aboard Champ's Folly ($3.60). Hardy trains for owner Michael Feinberg. They scored in a time of 1:54.1.