The 52st Annual Awards Banquet of the Monticello-Goshen Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association will be held on Sunday night, October 24, 2010 at the Monticello Casino & Raceway in Monticello, NY. And once again, it promises to be an outstanding gathering of great people in harness racing.
The Chapter is extremely proud to present its prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award to Lucien Fontaine. For Loosh it’ll be like coming home to where he began his career. He won driving titles at Monticello Raceway in 1963 -64 and went to New York and became one of the top catch-drivers there winning titles in 1968, 1977-78. In 1986 he handled Horse of the Year-but he always had a warm spot in his heart for Pocomoonshine, his $285,000 winner back in the 1960’s. Open heart surgery in 1989 curtailed Lucien’s career.
The Harness Writers will present to Steve Jones the Chapter’s Excelsior Award for his efforts and excellence in the breeding industry in NY State. Steve and dad Hal Jones’ Cameo Farms is one of the top breeding farms in the state and year in and year-out the farm produces outstanding race horses and world champions including their most famous,2008 Hambletonian winner.
Steve also devotes much time to Historic Track where he is Vice President of the Board of Directors.
Moira Fanning will be this year’s recipient of the prestigious Phil Pines Award for her outstanding contributions to the industry. Arguably Moira is the most dynamic woman in the industry. Her career taken her down many paths and for years she been a driving force behind The Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown and served as President of the U.S. Harness Writers Association. Known to all in the industry Moira is a dynamo and despite her reluctance it’s just a matter of time before she’s elected to the Writers Corner of the Hall of Fame.
The Chapter will bestow its Amy Bull Crist Distinguished Service Award to Eddie Diana , the County Executive of Orange County, NY. Eddie, is a past horse owner and former member and current honorary member of the Historic Track Board of Directors. Not only does Eddie direct the fortunes of Orange County, NY but he has been a grand supporter of harness racing at the Cradle of the Trotter.
For all he’s done to help keep harness racing on the local sports pages and for writing good things about good people Kevin Gleason will be the recipient of the chapter’s Good Guy Award. Over the years the Middletown(NY) Times- Herald sportswriter has written many award winning stories and many about harness racing.
The Amateur Driver of the Year Award will go to Cory Stratton. From a harness racing family he idolizes his older brother, Jordan Stratton. Despite the fact that Cory was the Billings Point leader, when he turned 18 on August 12, he turned professional. He is currently racing a small stable of horses at Colonial Downs but will return to the Mighty M upon the completion of the race meet at Colonial Downs.
Of course the chapter will celebrate the best performances, both human and equine, at Monticello Raceway and Historic Track during 2010 season.
Proceeds from the chapter’s charity journal are always donated to the Harness Racing Museum and to Goshen Historic Track.
For further information please contact the Monticello Raceway publicity office by calling 845-794-4100x455