HUGHESVILLE PA – Talented youngsters in sport frequently benefit from the guiding hand of a veteran to their particular discipline. This certainly was a major theme during Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes racing for two-year-olds on Thursday at the Lycoming County Fairgrounds, as seven of the victorious babies paraded back to the Hughesville winners circle were guided by experts 65 years old or older. The most regular visitor to Hughesville victory lane Thursday (4) and for the meet (5) was Dave Brickell (65), who won with four baby trotters, the first three of them within 50 minutes of the start of the card (the other winner in that period was 66YO Bill Daugherty Jr.). Brickell then only had one drive in the next 12 races but still, after three hours in a roasting 95-degree sunshine, he piloted home the card’s getaway winner in the 17th. Brickell is the owner/trainer/driver of the Oh So White gelding Whitey Lauxmont, who is unbeaten in four fair starts and won the fastest division of the 2CT in 2:07-30. His main competitor in that deep division may be Ruiz, now undefeated in two career starts, who repaired an early miscue that cost him 12-15 lengths, went up uncovered, and gained into a 29.3 last quarter to tally for driver Winston Lineweaver (70) and trainer Eileen Lineweaver, co-owner of the altered son of SJ’s Caviar with Bill Kreutzer. Fastest mile of the card came from the Village Jolt gelding Waitingforthisone, who reduced his mark by almost six seconds to 2:02.1 for owner/trainer/driver Roger Hammer (67). The mile most threatening to a Thursday track record was the engine triumph in 2:02.2, 2/5 shy of Nuclear Photo’s local 2PF standard, by a daughter of Four Starzzz Shark (three siring credits), Above And Beyond, owned by Ronald Michelon, and trained by Erv Miller – who at 46 is still in very successful middle age, with 4221 training victories and over $60M in conditioning earnings since recordkeeping for trainers started in 1991. The driver, you ask? Erv Miller!—who last sat behind a winning racehorse at Balmoral in November of 2011. But Erv showing sulky prowess shouldn’t surprise you – in the four seasons he had 100 or more drives, 1996-1999, he won two North American UDR titles and was second in another year! (And yes, it’s no accident that this paragraph mentioning UDR championships was placed just below the previous one.) Not to say that the “young guns” of the circuit didn’t have a fine day – in fact, there were the 7 driver wins for the 65+ers mentioned above, and then 7 sulkysitting triumphs for those who had not yet reached 30. The “oldest” of the latter group is 29YO Wayne Long, who guided the fastest trotter of the day, Cantabs Lightning, to the third win of her unblemished career, in 2:06.3. The daughter of Cantab Hall is also trained and driven by Long. And the leading trainer of the meet was 29YO Jason Hall, who harnessed four winners (three Thursday), all driven by his 27YO brother Chris. Their main owner is an interesting case. Of his 14-horse stable (including 11 two-year-olds), nine started at Hughesville, and he had three winners, three seconds, a third, and two fourths, for earnings of $5419. Jason is the father of his principal owner, Mason. Chris is his uncle. And his entire stable – is older than he is. FINISHING LINES – For the first time in 23 years, harness racing returns to the Bedford County Fair, with Monday and Tuesday sessions beginning at 11 a.m. Two members of the Bedford Sports Hall of Fame – Sam Beegle and Roger Hammer – are sure to be there.
The final stop on the Pennsylvania Fair Circuit, the Bloomsburg Fair in Columbia County, kicked off four days of harness racing on Monday (September 24).
Todd Schadel picked up four harness racing victories on his home track as the Pennsylvania Fair Circuit visited the Gratz Fairgrounds in Dauphin County, PA, near Harrisburg.
The 145th edition of the Great Stoneboro Fair featured a 14-race harness racing card for freshmen on Friday (August 31) in Northwestern Pennsylvania.The Quaker Stake for trotters opened the card, and Southern Gal (Pinetucky) picked up her first career win, scoring in 2:10 on her hometrack for owner, trainer and driver Charlie Crouser.