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Lloyd Arnold and Stan Bergstein, two legendary figures in harness racing, have races named in their honor this weekend at Cal Expo. The Lloyd Arnold Pace is set for Saturday night and the Stan Bergstein Trot is the feature on Sunday. Lloyd Arnold was an owner and track operator of the highest caliber. He passed away in 2012 at the age of 83. Originally the owner of Arnold Cattle Co. in Iowa, Mr. Arnold raced hundreds of horses in Illinois and across the Midwest throughout the 1960s and early 1970s. During that era, Mr. Arnold raced horses like Warm Breeze, who earned more than $250,000 in two seasons of racing in the mid-1970s, and Dancing David, who earned more than $200,000 in the 1960s. Warm Breeze took Mr. Arnold to racings pinnacle for the first time when he set the all-age world record at over this track, then known as Golden Bear Raceway. His top horses in later years included the pacing mare Sanabelle Island, who earned $1.6 million lifetime and won 57 of 110 starts. Also of note was Bagel Beach Boy, who won the 2001 Messenger and Matron stakes. In August 2003, Mr. Arnold bought Chevie Duramax, who then went on to set world records for 2-year-old pacing geldings on both mile and half-mile tracks. The fastest 3-year-old pacer in North America in 2004 belonged to Mr. Arnold as Quik Pulse Mindale won in 1:48 at Balmoral. In addition to being a prominent standardbred owner, Mr. Arnold operated this track during those Golden Bear Raceway years and also bought Los Alamitos in the late 1980s, eventually selling the track to his partner, Ed Allred. Mr. Arnold was inducted into the California Harness Hall of Fame in April of 2008. He also enjoyed personal honors in 2001 when he was feted by the Delaware Sportswriters and Broadcasters at their annual awards dinner and received the Owner of the Year Award from the U.S. Harness Writers' Association. Chris Bardis said, Harness Racing was one of Lloyd's great passions. He accomplished so much for the sport not only in California, but nationwide. He was Mr. Harness Racing. He conducted race meetings at Cal Expo, Bay Meadows, Golden Gate Fields, Del Mar, Pomona, Hollywood Park and Los Alamitos. I know of no one else who has had a greater impact on the harness world. Sundays Stan Bergstein Trot is named for the legendary figure in harness racing who passed away in 2011 at the age of 87. Mr. Bergstein was a harness-racing titan who advocated for cooperation between the Standardbred and Thoroughbred industries to solve the sports' common problems. He stepped down in 2011 after 50 years as the executive vice president of Harness Tracks of America, the Standardbred industry's trade association. He was immediately appointed as the organization's first executive emeritus, and continued to advise the association and write guest columns for the Daily Racing Form until the weeks before his death. The only person to ever be inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame and its Communicators Hall of Fame, Mr. Bergstein worked in a wide variety of roles at racetracks, auction houses, announcer's booths, and racing publications, and he maintained extensive collections of harness-racing books and artwork. He was widely respected not only in the harness industry, but also in the Thoroughbred industry, and he served as a mentor to generations of young racing professionals through a close association with the University of Arizona Race Track Industry Program, located in Tucson, for the past 40 years. Mr. Bergstein was a forceful proponent of forging closer ties between the Standardbred and Thoroughbred industries, most notably in tackling medication abuse and problems with drug-testing. In dozens of commentaries, Bergstein maintained that the Standardbred industry's problems were, or would be those of the Thoroughbred industry, and that neglect of a problem in one sport would damage the other. Bergstein borrowed from the Thoroughbred industry early in his career, incorporating claiming races as a racing secretary while working at the Chicago tracks in the 1950's. At the time, the harness racing industry did not run claiming races, and they are now as commonplace in Standardbred racing as they are in Thoroughbred racing Bergstein also spearheaded the creation of Standardbred Investigative Services, a security agency modeled on the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau. A native of Illinois, Bergstein attended harness races as a young man and received a journalism degree from Northwestern University. He was the former executive editor of Hoof Beats magazine, and the former vice president of publicity and public relations for the United States Trotting Association. Cal Expo trackman/program director Marty Bridges credits Stan Bergstein with bringing him into harness racing as a profession. After college and two years in the Army, I was employed by the small business association. At night, after work, I was a regular patron at Sportsmans Park and Maywood in Chicago. My supervisor, a former sportswriter for the Chicago Daily News, knew of my interest and called Stan to set up a meeting. Surprisingly, I was to meet him at Du Quoin on Hambletonian Day. Watching Stan call the races from a slightly elevated booth on the infield adjacent to the finish line was thrilling and between races we talked about racing, horses, drivers and trainers. His knowledge of the sport was amazing and I had never met anyone like him, and still havent. He introduced me to John Tinsley, the program director for all the Chicago tracks and John hired me on the spot. Its been a great ride, doing something I love. Gene Vallandingham first met Stan Bergstein in 1959 when he was working for the legendary Joe OBrien. Stan came to Joes farm every spring for the annual Camptown racing weekend, when all of Shafter would be there for a day of racing. Stan was the true voice of harness racing, he was liked by all and I miss him. Chris Schick said, "Stan was foremost a kind and compassionate person. He was a true visionary in the harness racing industry. In 1979 well before simulcasting, he so rightly stated the future of the industry was in how well we brought the product to the public. He was also very vocal of the industry for being reluctant to embrace change. Our industry lost a giant when he passed. Arnold Pace, Sire Stakes, Jackpot 6 spotlighted The $10,000 Lloyd Arnold Free-for-all Pace, a pair of $10,000 California Sire Stakes and a $48,130 carryover in the Jackpot 6 are among the main attractions Saturday night at Cal Expo. A 14-race card is on tap under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 6:10 p.m. The Jackpot 6 is one of four wagers on the program that feature a reduced 16% takeout rate. The others are the Hi-5, which like the Jackpot 6 is a 10-cent minimum bet; the 50-cent Pick 5; and the 20-cent Pick 4, which comes with a $25,000-guaranteed pool. Looking at the Arnold Pace, China King is fresh from a 22-1 upset in last weeks Open when he hung a narrow decision on heavily-favored Pancetta in a 1:52 1/5 mile He drew the outside post in the field of seven. A 7-year-old American Ideal gelding who carries the banner of Gary and Jen Sabot with Gene Vallandingham training and Steve Wiseman in the sulky, he went-to-coast to capture the January 17 Open at 19-1, then came back last time to score from a tracking position at another nice price. Taking him are Pointsman, who gives the Vallandingham barn two looks at the outcome; Rusty Skipp and J C Onthebeach for conditioner Ray Burt; Alligator Falls from the Sal Wenceslao shedrow; the Junior Wilkinson-trained A Real Miracle; and Love Live Laugh for trainer Denise Maier. Uringoodhands and Hi Hos Little Rev have dominated the sophomore pacing colts Sire Stakes to this point and get another chance to settle the score on Saturday, while Placer gets top billing in the stakes gathering for the 4-year-old trotters. By Mark Ratzky, publicity Cal Expo Harness                            

Paul A. Fontaine, long time director of USTA has resigned and his successor as a race track director from District 9 will be elected at the annual District 9 meeting in Augusta, ME on Saturday (January 17). “I will certainly miss my colleagues and the many friends I’ve had over almost 40 years in the USTA arena. I am confident that my contributions to the board have added substance to  USTA and I wish all my friends good fortune. May God bless." Fontaine, a practicing attorney since 1963 has been active for 45 years as an owner, breeder, yearling buyer and racetrack representative. His horses have raced from Maine to California and include No No Yankee, winner of the Inaugural Woodrow Wilson in 1977. He was co-founder of the former New England Sire stakes program, and as President of the Standardbred Owners Association of New England, representing horsemen at three major New England racetracks, was a prime mover and signatory to the first-ever contract entered into between tracks and horsemen sharing a retention on a 50/50 partnership basis, helping to usher in a new era of cooperation between tracks and horsemen. A long time advocate for honesty and integrity in harness racing, throughout his career he has spearheaded the creation and adoption of integrity policies that are still in effect today at the USTA, HTA, HHYF and the U.S. Harness Writers Association. Fontaine has served for the past 4 years as President of the Harness Tracks of America, where he has served as a director for many years. He has served on the Board of Directors of USTA for over 35 years and was presently its longest continuously serving member representing both horsemen and racetracks on the Board. He served 7 years as the Chairman of the Board. For the past 15 years, he has been a Trustee of the Harness Horse Youth Foundation, and was its Vice President for 12 years. He has served on the Board of Trustees of the American Horse Council for the past 10 years.   Fontaine was elected to the New England Harness Writers Association Hall of Fame in 1998 and was the 2009 recipient of the Joseph A. Vaccaro memorial award for lifetime achievement in the sport of harness racing. Drawing on his political background, having served in the Rhode Island State Senate from 1966-1976 and as a deputy majority leader, he has been active as a liaison to foster better relationships and communication between the racing industry and state racing commissions. He has demonstrated a lifetime of commitment and service in every aspect of the industry and sport that he loves and has represented harness racing with dignity and purpose. He lives in North Smithfield, Rhode Island with his wife Joanne. Fontaine has 5 children and 12 grandchildren. From the Media Department at the USTA

ELKTON, Md.—The Thoroughbred Racing Associations (TRA) has announced Clearwater Beach, Fla., as the host city for the 23rd annual International Simulcast Conference.  The 2015 conference will be held at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort, October 5-7. The TRA co-sponsors the annual event with the Harness Tracks of America (HTA), in conjunction with the American Greyhound Track Operators Association (AGTOA). Each year the conference attracts more than 250 racing executives and personnel to address the topics of chief importance to the pari-mutuel industry, including simulcasting, account wagering, wagering security and technology.   The Sheraton Sand Key Resort, a short drive from Tampa International Airport, is located on the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Mexico adjacent to Sand Key Park and Preserve. A special conference room rate of $147 per night will be offered. More information will be available on the TRA website, www.tra-online.com, as the conference nears.  by Jane Murray for the TRA         

Six highly motivated and academically talented college students will share in total scholarship awards of $16,000 presented by Harness Tracks of America.  “This year’s winners emerged from an exceptionally strong field of applicants,” stated HTA President Paul Fontaine.  “With the costs of completing a four-year undergraduate program more daunting than ever, HTA is pleased to continue its long tradition of assisting students whose families or themselves are actively  engaged in our great sport.” Two outstanding young women, Alleysha Reynolds of Duryea, PA and Lyndsay Hagemeyer of Clarksville, OH earned the top stipends of $5,000 each. Ms. Reynolds, 18, an Honors with Distinction Graduate from Pittston Area High School, is in her first year at Delaware Valley College in Doylestown, PA.  She intends to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Equine Science and Management and then go on to veterinary college while working on a breeding farm.   The ambitious Ms. Reynolds, who worked as a caretaker at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and at Domino’s Pizza her senior year of high school, attended two Harness Horse Youth Foundation Camps, at Saratoga in 2007 and Lexington in 2008.  Her father Robert, a groom and second trainer, works in logistics at Walmart.  Mother Luann is the Paddock Judge at Pocono. Lyndsay Hagemeyer was awarded this year’s second $5,000 HTA Scholarship.  University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College Student of the Year in 2011, the 23-year-old Clarksville, Ohio native is pursuing a double major in Psychology and Pre-Veterinary Medicine.  Ms. Hagemeyer, already a holder of an associate degree in Pre-Psychology and Deaf Studies from U.C., intends to seek a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine advanced degree when her undergraduate studies are complete, with a focus on equine and other large animals.  She appeared on the Dean’s List for Academic Excellence 12 consecutive terms while enrolled at UC’s McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. Ms. Hagemeyer’s energy, drive and commitment are reflected in both her work habits and volunteer efforts.  The 2010 graduate of Clinton Massie High School was heavily involved in 4-H, her church and Our Father’s Kitchen feeding the needy program, all while working 18 to 20 hours a week at Liberty Western, a quarter-horse supply business.  Employed there since 2007, Lyndsay is that firm’s longest-serving employee and has risen to Training Specialist and Sales Merchandise Coordinator.  She also helps out as needed (approximately 15 to 20 hours a week) as a trainer and groom at Hagemeyer Farms, managed by her father, Scott, and homemaker mom, Cindy.  The standardbred nursery and training facility has been in her family for four generations. HTA’s Scholarship Committee also dispensed $6,000 in awards to four other deserving applicants who demonstrated academic merit, need and harness racing involvement.  Each of the following winners will receive $1,500 for their post-secondary studies: Thomas Hundertpfund, 19, from Magnolia, DE, is a freshman majoring in Aeronautical Science at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL.  He spent four years at the highly competitive POLYTECH High School of Kent County, DE, earning a GPA of 94.8 and ranking 26th out of 283 in his class.  Hundertpfund was an Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corpsman all four years, a Distinguished Cadet and a winner of the General Ben Davis Award.  A National Honor Society inductee and two-year member of the POLYTECH Golf Team, he also earned the American Legion Scholastic Excellence Award and was chosen to attend Delaware Boys State as the representative for his local Legion post. Thomas is the son of Joseph, Jr. and Doreen Hundertpfund, the former a second generation standardbred trainer who races in Delaware, New Jersey and New York.  Cadet Hundertpfund, along with his sister, who currently works in the family’s stable operations, often helped around the barn from a young age.  “It remains a large part of my life and hopefully it will stay that way,” asserted Thomas in his application essay.  His first career goal, however, is to serve the nation as a pilot in the Navy. Thomas Wine, 19, from Coconut Creek, FL., is a sophomore at Broward College in Davie, FL.  A 2013 graduate of Monarch High School, where he participated in student government, Wine is working toward his Associate in Arts degree, majoring in Animal Science. He is a member of the Mathletics Team and has earned nearly all A’s and B’s while working 40-plus hours a week at Pompano Park.  The determined Wine paddocks four to six times a week, grooms, washes race bikes in the mornings and afternoon between classes, and helps the feed supplier deliver hay.  Upon graduation from Broward, Wine hopes to go to the University of Florida to pursue a graduate degree in Equine Science.  “My heart belongs in the horse business,” he wrote.  Thomas is the son of standardbred trainers Tom and Jill Wine.    Jennifer Lauer, 19, of Hightstown, NJ, is a sophomore biology major at East Stroudsburg University in PA, where she is a member of the swim team.  An honor roll student all four years of high school and captain of her swim team (Rookie of the Year and twice MVP), she has worked periodically throughout her educational endeavors as a lifeguard, swim lesson instructor, bistro staffer and assistant to her father, trainer Bruce Lauer, at his stable.  Her mother, Marie, is the horsemen’s booker and administrative assistant at the Meadowlands and Freehold Raceway. Jennifer, who spent two years volunteering at the Mercer County Wildlife Center and frequently shadowed veterinarians during their barn rounds, would like to attend graduate school and become a wildlife veterinarian. Maxwell Auerbach, 18, from Glen Rock, NJ, is a freshman attending the prestigious Robert H. Smith School of Business at The University of Maryland. While pursuing a Bachelor of Business Arts degree in Operations Management, Max has planned a curriculum in business and equine studies.  The National Honor Society student graduated with a 3.63 GPA from his hometown public high school and scored in the 96th percentile on his composite S.A.T’s.  A four-year chess club member, crossfit training enthusiast and rowing competitor, Max was also a steady part-time employee in high performance bicycle shops where he sold, assembled, customized, repaired and managed inventory. He also found time to tutor and physically train an autistic child three hours a week during all four years of high school and was a Torah Reader for five years at Temple Israel in Ridgewood, NJ.  His uncle, Larry Auerbach, has owned, bred and trained horses in New Jersey and New York for the past 25 years. Harness Tracks of America has made 208 grants to 141 worthy students since the scholarship fund’s inception in 1973.  A total of $778,950 has been awarded.  The scholarship program has had numerous donors over the years, with significant funding assistance coming from the Harold and David Snyder Families of International Sound Corporation, the Tioga Horsemen’s Association, Jeff Gural, Jason Settlemoir and Chris McErlean. From Harness Tracks of America

Harness racing driver Denis St Pierre had another superb day at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday, scoring four winners including the $31,700 Lucien Bombardier Stake with Mo Molly Blue Chip. One of the “pioneers” of horse racing in Canada, but especially Quebec, Lucien Bombardier devoted his entire life to the industry. Born and raised near Bedford, Que., Bombardier started training and driving harness horses at agricultural fair meetings in Quebec at an early age. In the early 1940s he left a business career to open a large racing stable at Richelieu Park in Montreal and in 1953 he accepted an executive position with Blue Bonnets (then Hippodrome de Montreal). During 25 years in racetrack management he played a role in developing many changes and innovations that helped make harness racing a major sport industry and earned him an enviable reputation on both sides of the border. He also served as a director of Harness Tracks of America, the Canadian Trotting Association and 16 years on the board of directors of the Canadian Standardbred Horse Society. The Bombardier Stake for two-year-old pacing fillies featured track record holder My Fleet Three, who was gunning for her third straight win. She started from post three for driver Mario Charron and in typical recent fashion went right to the lead. Only this week following My Fleet Three from start was Mo Molly Blue Chip, who despite being winless in seven starts, has been racing against much tougher competition in the Ontario Sire Stakes Grassroots at Mohawk Raceway. With Denis St. Pierre handling the driving, Mo Molly Blue Chip was glued to My Fleet Three’s back as they cut fractions of :28.1, :59.2 and 1:28.4. To complicate matters for My Fleet Three, First Girl (Stephane Gendron) came first-over at the half mile marker and continued pressure on the outside through the three-quarters. Then in the stretch, Pierre asked Mo Molly Blue Chip for a little more and she kicked in a :29 last quarter mile and went on to win by one length in 1:58. My Fleet Three held for second place with Rainbow Palace (Frances Picard) third. Trained by Yves Tesser, Mo Molly Blue Chip is a daughter of RocknRoll Heaven and is owned by Debbie Element of Waterdown, Geoffrey Lyons Mound of Brantford,ON and Jean Mondoux of Laval, QC. She paid $3.80 to win as the wagering favorite. Mo Molly Blue Chip was coupled in the wagering with stable mate Ainsleynoelle, who was fourth. For driver Denis St Piere, he started off the afternoon winning the fourth race pace with Barre Obligue ($8.60) in 1:59.2; the sixth race pace with Last Run ($14.40) in 1:58.4 and the seventh race pace with Don’t Tell Mom ($3.20) in 1:57 before capping his “grand slam” day with Mo Molly Blue Chip. Next week the Hippodrome 3R hosts the $250,000 Prix D’Ete weekend. There will be a special Saturday night live race program beginning at 7:00 pm and then on Sunday the race card will feature the $200,000 Prix D’Ete for four-year-old pacers, a $50,000 consolation race plus a $15,000 Invitational Trot and Pace. Sunday post time is 1:00 pm. For more information about the Prix D’Ete weekend go to www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club    

This Sunday the Hippodrome 3R and Standardbred Canada are hosting the $31,700 Lucien Bombardier Pace for two-year-old pacing fillies with seven young ladies battling it out. One of the “pioneers” of horse racing in Canada, but especially Quebec, Lucien Bombardier devoted his entire life to the industry. Born and raised near Bedford, Que., Bombardier retired in 1992 after 16 years on the board of directors of the Canadian Standardbred Horse Society. Bombardier started training and driving harness horses at agricultural fair meetings in Quebec at an early age. In the early 1940s he left a business career to open a large racing stable at Richelieu Park in Montreal and in 1953 he accepted an executive position with Blue Bonnets (then Hippodrome de Montreal). During 25 years in racetrack management he played a role in developing many changes and innovations that helped make harness racing a major sport industry and earned him an enviable reputation on both sides of the border. He also served as a director of Harness Tracks of America and the Canadian Trotting Association. On the racetrack for the Lucien Bombardier Stake in the eighth race will be the fastest two-year-old pacing filly in the history of the Hippodrome 3R in My Fleet Three. She will start from post three and will be driven for the first time by driver Mario Charron. But having a new chauffer every week has not hindered this excellent daughter of Mach Three as she has won her last two starts in track record time at 3R. Last week was the fastest for driver Daniel Dube, as they led from start to finish in the $55,000 Quebec-Bred Series Finale in 1:57.4. The prior week it was Denis St Pierre and they first broke the old record with a 1:57.1 triumph. My Fleet Three is trained by Richard Moreau and was bred and is owned by Geston Marie Audet, Inc. of Yves Sarrazin, QC and has earnings this year of $32,210. Hoping to tie a rope to My Fleet Three will be return winners Rightly Said (post 4) and Ainsleynoelle (post 2), along with Rainbow Palace (post 6) and First Girl (post 7), all vying to get a part of the rich purse. Post time for Sunday’s program is 1:00 pm. For additional information about 3R and the upcoming Prix D’Ete next week, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com.  From the Quebec Jockey Club

Elkton, MD---“Is Racing Keeping Pace with Technology” will be the theme of the 22nd annual International Simulcast Conference in Delray Beach, Fla., on Sept. 29-Oct. 1. The conference, which will be held at the Marriott Delray Beach, will feature presentations and discussions on available technology and how it can be used to the benefit or detriment of pari-mutuel racing. As technology continuously exercises increased impact on consumer trends, conference sessions will be devoted to the influence of technology from a competitive perspective, in enhancing the viewing and wagering experience, and what response technology may require for the industry to stay current with consumer demands. Among the areas to be discussed: • Mobile device use on-track • High definition production and home delivery • Fan and bettor experience             The International Simulcast Conference is co-sponsored by the TRA and Harness Tracks of America, in association with the American Greyhound Track Operators Association. Conference attendance requires registration with the TRA.  Hotel rooms are still available and reservations may be made by calling the Marriott Delray Beach at 561-274-3200 and requesting the “International Simulcast Conference” block. The deadline for hotel reservations is September 12.  Conference registration deadline is September 19. For more information, including the conference registration process, please visit www.tra-online.com. by Jane Murray, for TRA

MANALAPAN, NJ - July 2, 2014 - Rob Pennington, an award-winning caretaker and activist for Standardbred causes, has been named assistant racing secretary and program director for Freehold Raceway, effective August 2014. The Freehold meet begins on Thursday, August 28, 2014. Pennington, a 34-year-old Ohio-native who currently lives in Allentown, NJ, was honored as the Harness Tracks of America Caretaker of the Year in 2013 and has been a groom for the Noel Daley Stable since 2009. "I am very excited [about this new challenge]," said Pennington. "I wanted to stay in the standardbred business yet put myself out there in a position where I could better myself and the business. I am extremely passionate about the standardbred industry as well as the breed." Pennington is on the board of directors of the Standardbred Pleasure Horse Organization [SPHO] and has volunteered his services to the Open Space Pace Committee, the Riding Under Saddle program and the Standardbred Retirement Foundation. "I've worked with Rob on several committees, and I know how passionate he is about the industry," said Karen Fagliarone, Freehold's director of racing and racing secretary. "Although he has never had any race office experience, he is a quick learner. Aside from assisting in the race office in the mornings, he will be the attendant in the winner's circle and will expand our social media sites in the afternoons." Peter J. Iovino, the former assistant racing secretary at Freehold, accepted a position as racing secretary for Saratoga Harness. by Carol Hodes, for SBOANJ

The following official statement is from Paul Fontaine, president of Harness Tracks of America   Harness Tracks of America (HTA) is embarking on a new chapter in its storied history. Our executive committee and directors have decided to repatriate our office to East of the Mississippi, bringing our focus and manpower closer to our membership, geographically. We will be closing our offices in Tucson, Ariz., and henceforth will be operating at Northfield Park, Northfield, Ohio.   Our executive vice president, Paul Estok, is anchored in Tucson and will regrettably be leaving his executive position at HTA due to our relocation.   This is an exciting time at HTA as our membership is close to an all-time high and our services continue to be sought by our tracks and the entire Standardbred industry. We will continue to be available to provide the resources to which our industry has become accustomed and we look forward to the new experiences and challenges occasioned by our move to Northfield.   HTA wishes to thank Mr. Estok for his 20 years of service during which he served as Stan Bergstein's right hand and then continued on as the steward of our association after Stan's passing. His work, dedication and loyalty to HTA has always been exemplary and well appreciated by our members.   We invite not only our track members but all who toil in our Standardbred vineyard to partake of our new experience and share with us the excitement and enthusiasm generated by our relocation.   Please do not hesitate to call me with any questions, comment or information or you may reach out to Brock Milstein, Northfield Park, Northfield Road, Northfield, Ohio , phone #330-467-4101 or bmilstein@northfieldpark.com. You may also contact Tom Aldrich at taldrich@northfieldpark.com for any HTA matters or HTA scholarship questions.  

Rob Pennington, a native of Marion, Ohio, has been named 2013 Groom of the Year in the annual competition sponsored by Hanover Shoe Farms and Harness Tracks of America. Now a resident of Allentown, New Jersey, Pennington works full time for trainer Noel Daley, caring for five horses, most owned by William B. Weaver III’s Valley High Stable. In nominating Pennington, Christie DeBernardis, a Thoroughbred Daily News employee, wrote “this year Rob went above and beyond the normal groom’s job when Mr. Weaver had an accident in Lexington and had to undergo surgery and rehabilitation. Weaver’s band of broodmares needed to be booked and bred to stallions, so Rob made countless trips to the rehabilitation center to discuss breeding possibilities and strategies. Rob filled out the breeding contracts and mailed them to the breeding farms and would bring them back to Mr. Weaver to be signed when they were returned.” DeBernardis went on to describe other ways Pennington has made his vocation his avocation. As well as grooming full time Pennington stays busy in a number of other capacities within the Standardbred world. He is a board member for the Standardbred Pleasure Horse Organization of New Jersey, a new board member of the Open Space Pace Committee, an active volunteer for the Standardbred Retirement Foundation, as well as an active member of the group starting a Racing Under Saddle Association. In addition to the horses he cares for in the Daley stable, Pennington owns two retired Standardbreds, Larry and Sadie. He shows the horses in state and national competitions and has won awards with each of them. Of Pennington, DeBernardis says, “Rob will tell you the day his life becomes a job he won’t want to do it anymore, so for now he is enjoying life doing what he loves, caring for what I would say are the seven luckiest Standardbreds in the world, the two he owns and the five he cares for at work.” From Harness Tracks of America

The Harness Tracks of America College Scholarship Fund is offering three, $5,000 scholarships for post-secondary education to students actively involved in the sport of harness racing or to the children of harness racing professionals (living or deceased), including licensed drivers, trainers, caretakers or management officials. Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic merit, financial need and active harness racing involvement. Applications are available now by contacting Harness Tracks of America via phone at 520-529-2525 or e-mail at delight@harnesstracks.com. The deadline for returning all application materials is June 20, 2013. Applications can also be completed/downloaded from the following Web site: www.harnesstracks.com/scholarships.htm The scholarship program, begun in 1973, has made 202 grants to 135 worthy students involved in harness racing since its inception with the scholarships totaling $762,950. HTA 2014-2015 Scholarship Application>>2014-2015 Scholarship Application  

LEBANON, OH - Hall of Famer Dave Palone, the winningest driver in the storied history of North American harness racing and the reigning Harness Tracks of America 'Driver of the Year', has accepted an invitation to compete on the inaugural three racing programs at the brand new Miami Valley Raceway in southeast Ohio. He will join Ronnie Wrenn Jr. and Dan Noble, also recent national dash champions, and a host of other talented reinsmen during the gala Grand Opening Weekend February 7 through 9. Palone has won over 16,000 races and horses he has driven have earned over $116,000,000 in purses in his illustrious career. The 51-year-old driver has won over 500 races every year since 1992 and has won the driving title at The Meadows racetrack in Pennsylvania an astounding 24 consecutive years. He has won the national annual dash championship four times, including 2012 with 674 victories. Among his most notable accomplishments are winning The Little Brown Jug, The Adios, a Breeders Crown, The Jugette and the Kentucky Filly Futurity. He was inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in Goshen, New York in 2010. Wrenn, who has only been driving for six years, burst onto the national scene in 2013 by winning the national dash crown with 714 triumphs. The talented 27-year-old didn't start taking the sport seriously until 2011 when he won 150 races, followed by a 437 win season in 2012. A nephew of Peter Wrenn, who ranks 13th on the all-time wins list with over 9,000 trips to the winner's circle, Ronnie was Northfield Park's leading driver in 2013 and raced at over a dozen other venues on his way to the national laurels. He is currently recuperating from wrist surgery he had January 6 to fix an old football injury, but reports the cast has been removed and he will return to the racing wars before the calendar turns to February. Noble, the son of Ohio Harness Hall of Famer Sam "Chip" Noble III-who recently passed away after a battle with esophageal cancer, won the national dash championship in 2011 when he recorded 773 wins. He has followed that record-setting performance with 537 tallies in 2012 and 421 more in 2013. At age 30, Dan has already amassed better than 3,500 victories and has averaged over 300 annually over the last 11 years. Raised in nearby Xenia, Noble has fashioned a Universal Driver Rating System (UDRS) average over .320 in each of the last five years. Owners of the horses he has driven have been rewarded with over $14 million in purse money to date. The three most recent national dash champions will sign autographs for patrons at the new Miami Valley Raceway from 5:00 to 6:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday nights, February 8 and 9. Beginning February 7 racing will be conducted every Wednesday through Sunday night until May 4. The first race each night will be scheduled for 6:30 pm. Submitted by Miami Valley Racing  

Tucson, AZ --- Dave Palone, the 51-year-old Waynesburg, Pa., native is Harness Tracks of America’s Driver of the Year, the formidable achievement that remains the most difficult award in the sport of harness racing to win. It is the seventh time Palone has won the title! The evidence of the accomplishment is clear in the fact that of the 3,156 drivers who competed for purses in North America in 2013, only six were able to finish in the top 10 in money won, races won and UDR in-the-money percentage. Under the HTA formula, points are awarded on the basis of 25 for first down to one for 25th in the standings in money won, races won, and UDR, with a 25-point bonus for finishing in the top 25 in all three categories. Palone’s 2013 Driver of the Year trophy will be presented as part of the United States Harness Writers' 2014 Dan Patch Awards Banquet Night of Champions, on Sunday (Feb. 23) at Dover Downs in Dover, Dela. Here are the complete standings for 2013 for the top 25 drivers in North America: Drivers--Wins (Rank)--Earnings (Rank)--UDR (Rank)--Bonus--Total Points Dave Palone--645 (2T)--$6,128,869 (12)--.385 (3)--25--85.5 Yannick Gingras--537 (8T)--$14,231,476 (2)--.367 (8)--25--84.5 Tim Tetrick--582 (5)--$16,164,822 (1)--.320 (13T)--25--83.5 Brian Sears--507 (12T)--$13,737,691 (3)--.368 (7)--25--80.5 George Napolitano Jr.--551 (7)--$6,068,813 (14)--.315 (18)--25--64 George Brennan--450 (14)--$9,134,699 (7)--.311 (20T)--25--61.5 Corey Callahan--619 (4)--$9,708,323 (6)--.281--(unranked)--42 Ronnie Wrenn Jr.--714 (1)--$2,480,373 (unranked)--.361 (10)--41 Trevor Henry--529 (10)--$2,458,956 (unranked)--.392 (2)--40 Ron Pierce--537 (8T)--$11,550,300 (5)--.281 (unranked)--38.5 Michael Oosting--511 (11)--$3,535,283 (unranked)--.373 (5)--36 Jim Morrill, Jr.--343 (unranked)--$6,116,760 (13)--.383 (4)--35 Bruce Aldrich, Jr.--645 (2T)--$2,764,419 (unranked)--.316 (17)--32.5 Matt Kakaley--446 (15)--$7,527,717 (8)--.287 (unranked)--29 David Miller--388 (22)--$12,230,914 (4)--.268 (unranked)--26 Winston Campbell--321 (unranked)--$835,983 (unranked)--.416 (1)--25 Aaron Merriman--568 (6)--$4,165,510 (24)--.292 (unranked)--22 Bruce Ranger--254 (unranked)--$1,216,733 (unranked)--.369 (6)--20 Jason Bartlett--362 (24)--$7,136,699 (9)--.260 (unranked)--19 Jim Marohn Jr.--390 (21)--$1,762,040 (unranked)--.331 (12)--19 Jody Jamieson--352 (unranked)--$6,300,192 (11)--.307 (23T)--17 Andy Miller--354 (25)--$7,122,058 (10)--.254 (unranked)--17 Luke Plano--262 (unranked)--$765,014 (unranked)--.363 (9)--17 Heath Campbell--202 (unranked)--$817,779 (unranked)--.349 (11)--15 Chris Page--428 (16)--$2,478,072 (unranked)--.308 (22)--14

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (January 13, 2014) - The New York State Gaming Commission and the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine today announced the appointment of Scott E. Palmer, VMD as the state's Equine Medical Director after conducting an international search.   Dr. Palmer, a renowned veterinarian from New Jersey with more than three decades of experience in providing medical care for horses, will oversee the health and safety of horses at all New York State Thoroughbred and Standardbred racetracks. He was selected from an international pool of finalists by a blue-ribbon search committee of veterinarians and horse industry professionals.   Dr. Palmer will be responsible for all aspects of equine health, safety, and welfare at New York racetracks and will advise the Commission on equine medication policies as well as the safety and condition of racetrack facilities and surfaces. He will supervise all on-track regulatory veterinarians as well as the New York State Equine Drug Testing Program laboratory. He will oversee equine testing procedures, ensure compliance with regulatory veterinary protocols, investigate incidents and monitor the Commission's necropsy program.   As New York's Equine Medical Director, Dr. Palmer will also serve as an Adjunct Professor at Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, where he will be responsible for developing and coordinating continuing education programs for veterinarians and trainers related to medication and equine injuries. He will coordinate research on equine sports medicine topics and collaborate with faculty on epidemiological studies to analyze equine safety issues.   Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said, "Dr. Palmer brings a wealth of experience and expertise that will benefit the entire horse racing community. His skills and knowledge are crucial to the safety and well-being of New York's world-class race horses and I am proud to welcome him to the Gaming Commission.   Robert Williams, Acting Executive Director of the Gaming Commission, said, "We are honored to have Dr. Palmer on the team. His decades of work creating critical health and safety improvements in horse racing are well recognized and make him the ideal candidate to bring important equine safety measures to life at all New York State tracks. Dr. Palmer is an outstanding veterinarian and a consummate professional and we look forward to working with him."   Michael I. Kotlikoff, Austin O. Hooey Dean of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell's College of Veterinary Medicine, said, "I congratulate the Governor on his commitment to improving the health and safety, as well as the economic vitality, of New York racing. This appointment is an important step in a process that began with the Governor's mandate to reorganize the regulatory agency overseeing horse racing, restructure NYRA, and commission a task force to improve equine safety. The designation of a highly experienced veterinarian with broad authority to oversee all aspects of racing regulations, testing, and compliance, as well as research and education, will ensure the integrity of, and public confidence in, New York State's premier racing programs."   Dr. Palmer said, "I am honored to join the Commission and to help bolster New York's ongoing commitment to equine health and safety. Having a sole veterinary point of contact overseeing all New York race horses and having access to Cornell's array of resources is simply smart policy. I am eager to get to work, and I look forward to working with our partners to create as safe an environment as possible for our horses."   Since his graduation from the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Veterinary Medicine in 1976, Dr. Palmer has worked as a staff clinician at the New Jersey Equine Clinic, serving as the Hospital Director since 1997. He is a two-time recipient of the New Jersey Equine Practitioners Veterinarian of the Year award, as well as a recipient of the AAEP President's Award in 2009 and the AAEP Distinguished Service Award in 2010.   Dr. Palmer is board certified in equine practice by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. He has authored dozens of peer-reviewed publications and is a featured speaker at veterinary conferences world-wide. He is a member of several professional organizations and has held leadership positions in many, including the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, and the New Jersey Association of Equine Practitioners.   Dr. Palmer chaired the New York Task Force on Racehorse Health and Safety, which was formed at the request of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo in 2012 in the wake of 21 equine fatalities during Aqueduct's 2011-12 Winter Meet. The New York State Equine Medical Director position was established last year as a key recommendation of that Task Force.   Dr. Palmer serves as a Board Member for the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance Advisory Board and the Thoroughbred Charities of America. He previously served on the ARCI Special Task Force on Medication and chaired the International Summit on Race Day Medication as well as the Ad-Hoc RMTC Committee on Race Day Security and served two terms as member of the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Advisory Committee.   Jerry Bailey, a Hall of Fame jockey, television analyst for ESPN and NBC, and member of the New York Task Force on Racehorse Health and Safety, said, "Scott Palmer is an outstanding selection to lead New York's equine medical program. As he proved during his work on the Task Force, he has the knowledge and foresight to delve deep into complex issues surrounding equine health and come up with sound, effective solutions, as well an unparalleled work ethic. I am very happy for Scott and congratulate him as he embarks on this latest endeavor."   Alan Foreman, chairman and chief executive officer of the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and a member of the New York Task Force on Racehorse Health and Safety, said, "I had the good fortune of seeing Scott's excellent work in person while on the Task Force on Racehorse Health and Safety. He's the ideal candidate to serve as Equine Medical Director. His knowledge of the horse will be an absolute asset for New York State's robust horse racing industry. I congratulate Scott on the position and applaud Governor Cuomo for appointing such a seasoned professional."   James L. Gagliano, president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club, said, "The appointment of an Equine Medical Director clearly reinforces New York State's commitment to horse health and safety. Dr. Palmer is highly regarded throughout the Thoroughbred industry and we look forward to working with him, and with the New York State Gaming Commission, to further enhance the safety of our athletes."   Chris Kay, CEO and president of The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA), said, "Scott brings outstanding credentials to this important new position, and he shares our steadfast commitment to equine safety. Our newly hired senior vice president of racing operations, Martin Panza, also brings a wealth of experience to his new role, and he and Scott will work very closely together on behalf of all thoroughbreds at Aqueduct Racetrack, Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course."   Paul J. Estok, Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Harness Tracks of America, said, "The appointment of Dr. Scott Palmer as New York racing's first Equine Medical Director is good news for racing. Dr. Palmer's impeccable credentials as a practitioner combined with his work as an advocate for better drug testing, as a leader dealing with retired and "unwanted" racehorses, and his understanding of racing's varied stakeholder interests make him the ideal candidate to lead New York's effort to lead North America in health, safety, and integrity initiatives for the equine athlete."   Lawrence R. Bramlage, DVM, partner and equine orthopedic surgeon at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital located in Lexington, Ky., said, "Dr. Palmer is a widely respected and talented veterinarian who has broad experience on the backside, as a surgeon, and as a member of numerous committees and task forces on racing. He will be a real champion for New York's racehorses. His record as a racing advocate and in equine practice speaks for itself and I congratulate him on his new position, as well as New York State for bringing him on board."   The Equine Medical Director Search Committee consisted of: · Michael I. Kotlikoff, VMD, PhD. (chair) - Dean, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine · Robert Williams - Acting Executive Director, Gaming Commission · Mary Scollay-Ward, DVM - Equine Medical Director, Kentucky Horse Racing Commission · Lisa A. Fortier, DVM, PhD. - Associate Professor, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine · Thomas J. Divers, DVM - Steffen Professor of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine · Jerry Bilinski, DVM - Proprietor, Waldorf Farms · Terry Finley - Founder and President, West Point Thoroughbreds · Kenny McPeek - Trainer, McPeek Racing · Bennett Liebman - Deputy Secretary for Gaming and Racing, NYS Executive Chamber · Anthony Bonomo - NYRA Reorganization Board member · C. Steven Duncker - NYRA Reorganization Board member   by Lee Park for New York State Gaming Commission    

Saturday (Dec. 14), the "Fourth Annual Horsemen's Christmas Drive" will be at the Dover Mall from 7 a.m. until closing for a fund raiser. People are urged to shop for those in need of items to enable local families and children to have a Merry Christmas. Last year, under the direction of trainer Jane Davis, 77 local families and more than 220 children were able to have a Christmas to remember. Already, $1,000.00 has been given to the Food Bank of Delaware. All donations are Tax Deductible. Make checks out to 'Horsemen's Welfare Trust Fund,' and present at the DSOA Paddock Office or DSOA Office, 830 Walker Square, Dover DE 19904 or contact Janet Davis at 302-632-7915. ------------------------------------------ Last Thursday (Dec. 5) Dover Downs horsemen contributed around $7,500, "In Support of Anthony Coletta." After a horrendous racing accident at Harrah's Philadelphia on Nov. 10, Colette has been in Hospital University of Pennsylvania where he is still in a coma but breathing on his own. Local horsemen are among the many throughout the country supporting Coletta, A "Stay Strong A. Coletta,"fund set up by his close friend, trainer Anthony DeFrancesco will aid Coletta and his family. To contribute, donations can be sent to: 'Stay Strong A. Coletta', c/o TD Bank, 2653 S. 5th St., Phila. PA 19148. Trainers Janet Davis and Crissy Bier are selling wrist bands and ribbons in the Dover Downs paddock to support the Co0letta fund. ------------------------------ The traditional Delaware Horsemen's Christmas Break begins on Friday, Dec. 20 and continues the holiday week through Dec. 28. Live racing will return on Sunday, Dec. 29 at 5:30 p.m. Dover Downs will also be dark on Tuesday, Dec. 31, New Year's Eve. There will be racing on Jan. 1, New Year's Day. ------------------------------------------ Corey Callahan has already come up with several 'big win' days with seven and six wins cards. On Wednesday (Dec. 11), Callahan won five races to bring his current meet-leading total to 70 wins. He now has 71 winning drives. Allan Davis is runner-up with 37. Ross Wolfenden ha 33 wins, Vic Kirby has 32 and George Dennis has 27 wins, completing the top five winning drivers standings. ------------------------------------ Wayne Givens holds the top spot in the trainer standings with 22 wins. Dylan Davis is now second with 18 wins. Eric Ell is third with 14, Joe Hundertpfund and Les Givens are tied for fourth with 14 winners.. ----------------------------------- Time is running out for nominations for 2013 'Groom of the Year' award, sponsored by Harness Tracks of America (HTA) and Hanover Shoe Farms. Caretakers at Dover Downs have been the last three Grooms of the Year; Tom Cugel in 2010, Greg Haverstick in 2011 and last year, Florzell 'Georgie Boy' Daniels. Dec. 31 is deadline to nominate a groom. Send a nomination to HTA, 12025 E. Dry Gulch Pl., Tucson AZ 85749; by fax to 520-529-3235; or by email to delight@harnesstracks.com. Information must contain name, address, telephone number and jacket size (S, M, L, XL, XXL) for the nominated groom, along with name and address of the nominator. --------------------------------------- Heather Vitale will again MC the annual DSOA Awards-Dinner. The big night for Delaware men and women horsemen will be held at Modern Maturity, on Route 8, in Dover on Friday, Jan. 10. Tickets are now available. Contact Sal DiMario, DSOA executive director. Already, Friday (Dec. 5) was a banner night for Delaware harness horsemen and families attending the 17th annual Delaware Standard bred Owners Association (DSOA) Christmas Party by Marv Bachrad for Dover Downs  

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2013 Groom of the Year Award. The award, sponsored annually by Harness Tracks of America and Hanover Shoe Farms, recognizes the unsung heroes of the sport, the grooms who maintain the health and welfare of the sport's horses. All that is needed to nominate a groom for the 32nd annual Groom of the Year Award is a letter from an individual or group to Harness Tracks of America detailing the skills and special qualities of the groom. The winning groom receives an oil painting of himself or herself with the horse of their choice. All individuals nominated for the award receive a certificate of excellence and the first 50 grooms nominated also receive an embroidered jacket as a groom of the year nominee. The Groom of the Year Award was founded in 1982 after Delvin Miller, addressing attendees at the annual HTA meeting as its Messenger Award winner for that year, noted the sport gave no recognition to its grooms, its unsung stars. The 2012 Groom of the Year was Florzell "Georgie Boy" Daniels. The deadline for nominations is Dec. 31. All letters detailing why candidates are deserving of the honor as groom of the year should be mailed to Harness Tracks of America, 12025 E. Dry Gulch Pl., Tucson, AZ, 85749. Nominations also may be submitted by fax to 520-529-3235 or by e-mail to delight@harnesstracks.com. Letters must contain the name, address, telephone number and jacket size (S, M, L, XL, XXL) for the nominated groom, along with the name, address and telephone number of the nominator. Submitted by Harness Tracks of America  

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