Day At The Track
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A reminder that this Sunday, July 3 is Hall of Fame Day at the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame in Goshen, New York. Tickets to attend Sunday evening's Hall of Fame Dinner can still be had. Individual tickets are $125. Call the Museum at 845-294-6330 for information. There will be live harness racing at neighboring Goshen Historic Track Friday through Monday, July 1-4, including the classic Hall of Fame Invitational Trot on Sunday, Hall of Fame Day. Post time is 1:00 each day. Admission is $5 and children 12 and under are free. If you can't make it to Goshen this weekend, watch live streaming video of the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies at the USTA's website at www.ustrotting.com. Festivities begin at 7:00 p.m. ET. While you're online, visit the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame's new, redesigned website at www.harnessmuseum.com. Museum news, Hall of Famer biographies and historic harness racing photographs make up just some of the updated content you can explore at our informative new site. From the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame

DAYTON PA - To be a strong candidate for consideration into becoming a member of the sport's pinnacle, the Hall of Fame, a non-trainer/driver should have solid credentials, such as not only continuing but enhancing the credentials of a major breeding farm, consistently having top horses in the top ranks in the sport, and performing respected committee work on many of the sport's most elite committees and boards.   It also doesn't hurt to have the hottest horse in the Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes circuit. And Charles Keller III, who will be on the Hall of Fame ballots that should be distributed starting next week, can tick off all of the above boxes.   Keller is the co-owner of Connie Jean, a two-year-old trotting filly by Cantab Hall-Eclat Hanover, and on Thursday she kept her PA fair record perfect after five starts with a victory at the Dayton (PA) Fair. The time of 2:09.3 wasn't as important as the fact that Connie Jean is still looking for a conqueror as she rolls along for trainer/driver Todd Schadel and Keller's co-owners Charles Keller IV, Dan Bittle, and Brett Bittle.   Other babies with impressive records who raced at Dayton were the pacers Well Lets See (Well Said-Lioness Hanover), taking a colt event in 2:03.3, fastest freshman mile and running his record to 8-6-0-2, and filly Devious Behavior (Dragon Again-Ideal Sign), now 8-7-1-0 after a 2:06.4 win. Both sidewheelers are campaigned by Team Delaware - driver Brandon Givens, trainer Kevin Lare, and owner Frank Chick - who are having a tremendous first year at the Keystone twicearounds.   The sophomores took to the Dayton track Wednesday, and a 2:00 mile was rung up by Slick Rain, an altered son of Quik Pulse Mindale, who took a quick liking to "country cookin'" after a steady diet of city food at Harrah's, for trainer/driver Wayne Long and owner Janice Hertzog.   Other horses continuing impressive form sprees Wednesday were pacing gelding Royaltyhasarrived, now 8-7-1-0 after a 2:01 tally for driver Brady Brown and trainer Steve Schoeffel; Betterthanrevenge, a pacing filly who is now six for six on the fair circuit after a 2:02.4 victory for hot trainer/driver Harold Brocklehurst; and the trotting gelding Wimborne Hanover, last year's 2YO champion who is now 7 for 9 after winning in 2:02 (top trotting time) for driver Schoeffel and trainer Bill Daugherty Jr.   Brandon Givens led the drivers standings at the two-day meet with four victories, one more than Dave Brickell, Wayne Long, and Chris Shaw. On the trainers side, they had to put sideboards on the trophy, as no fewer than eight horsemen harnessed two winners to tie for the top of that category: Dave Brickell, Harold Brocklehurst, Mike Gillock, Roger Hammer (season's leader in both driving and training), Kevin Lare, Todd Schadel, Steve Schoeffel, and Jason Shaw.   Pennsylvania fair legend Walter "Boots" Dunn will be the genial host for four days of racing at the Crawford County oval at Meadville starting on Monday; high noon will find the first race going to the gate each day.   Publicity Office, PA Fair Harness Horsemen's Association

 Russell Williams, vice-president of the famous nursery Hanover Shoe Farms and a director on the boards of many of harness racing's top organizations, and Charles Keller III, who carried on the tradition of his father's famous Yankeeland Farm and also continues to serve the sport on many of its top organizations' boards, have been announced as the finalists for the 2014 Stan Bergstein-Proximity Award, it has been announced by the United States Harness Writers Association (USHWA). After the various chapters of USHWA submitted nominations for the award, the highest honor USHWA bestows based on voting only by its members and given for outstanding achievement in/service to the sport, the nominees were sent to the Association's directors, who voted to winnow down the candidates to the top two. Williams and Keller will now be voted on by the entirety of USHWA during the annual Dan Patch Awards balloting honoring the year's stars, both equine and human; that balloting will be conducted in early December. Williams, the grandson of Hanover's founder Lawrence Sheppard, plays a major part in the operation of the world's leading Standardbred-producing farm, where he keeps his own small but select band of broodmares (he is the breeder of the million-dollar-winning top three-year-old colt Nuncio). He is also vice chairman of the U.S. Trotting Association, the sport's supervisory organization, and a trustee of the American Horse Council and the Harness Racing Museum. Williams is also a noted "equine philanthropist," financing the possibility of many Standardbreds being able to live out their lives with dignity, including retired Hanover broodmares. Keller, the son of noted Yankees baseball player "King Kong" Keller, took over operation of Yankeeland Farms, which his father established, in 1990 until the farm's closing in 2006. The farm bred two Hambletonian winners, Muscles Yankee (1998) and Yankee Paco (2000), and it also bred Yankee Blondie, the dam of 2009 winner Muscle Hill, along with countless other divisional champions. It has produced the outstanding sires Yankee Glide and Yankee Cruiser, and has been the cradle of four Breeders Crown winners Keller is the chairman of the executive committee of the Hambletonian Society, a trustee of the Harness Racing Museum, and a former director of the U. S. Trotting Association. The Bergstein/Proximity winner, along with the awards for the best of 2014, will be given at USHWA's annual Dan Patch Awards dinner on Sunday, February 22, 2015, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Orlando at SeaWorld; more details, including on accommodations, will be forthcoming soon. USHWA

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