NICHOLS, NY - When nine of North America's top harness racing drivers compete at Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs later this month in the 8th Annual All-Star Drivers Championship, they'll be racing for more than just prize money and bragging rights. They'll also be raising money for the charity of their choice.
All nine drivers will donate their 5% driving commission to charity. The amount will be matched by Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs plus the tracks' owner, Jeffrey Gural.
Last year, more than $9,000 was donated.
"This event is the premier driving tournament in the country with a first place prize of $25,000," said Jason Settlemoir, Vice President of Racing and Simulcast at Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs. "Anytime we can use this big stage to raise awareness and money for some great organizations, we're happy to do it."
Defending champion Jimmy Marohn, Jr. will be donating his earnings to the Standardbred Retirement Foundation. Two-time champion and first-time participant will also support the SRF.
and will be competing on behalf of New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program. has selected the Harness Horse Youth Foundation. Canadian representative will be donating to the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society.
Vernon Downs representative will be competing for locally based Sunshine Horses and has chosen to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Round 1 of the All-Star Drivers Championship takes place on August 29 at Vernon Downs and the final round moves to Tioga Downs on September 1. Both days will also feature a Jimmy Marohn, Jr. bobblehead giveaway, commemorative t-shirt giveaway and other fan-friendly promotions and contests.
by Justin Horowitz, for Tioga & Vernon Downs