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Goshen, NY - The Dan Patch Horse of the Year trophies will be presented on Sunday, March 6, 2016 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Tickets for this gala event, the Dan Patch Awards Banquet--Night of Champions, are still available, but the deadline for advertising in the souvenir journal is Wed., Feb. 10.   In addition to equine divisional honors, a host of the industry's biggest and brightest will be feted at the annual awards ceremony, including this year's inductees to the Harness Racing Hall of Fame, Charles Keller III & Bruce Nickells; and Communicators Hall of Fame, David Carr and Jerry Connors.   The U. S. Harness Writers list of human awards also includes the Stan Bergstein Proximity Award winner, James Simpson, as well as the Owner, Trainer, Driver, and Breeder of the Year, Rising Star, Breakthrough, Good Guy and a host of others, which are listed below and available on the USHWA.org website.   Tickets for the Dan Patch Awards Banquet are now available can be reserved via telephone or Email by contacting Judy Davis-Wilson at 302-359-3630 or Email: zoe8874@aol.com Steve Wolf at 954-654-3757 or Email: stevenwolf1956@gmail.com   Savings on hotel rooms can be attained for this event, which is being held at the luxury resort of Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty Six. A special rate can be reserved by calling 888-421-1442 BEFORE February 11, and mentioning code: DAN PATCH or by clicking this link: https://resweb.passkey.com/go/USHWA The deadline for the Dan Patch Awards journal is Wednesday, February 10. To advertise in the Souvenir Journal, please contact Chris Tully by calling 845.807.7538 or Email: tullytrot@yahoo.com All of this information and applicable advertising forms can be accessed via internet link: USHWA.org   Dan Patch Horse Awards – 2015 Champions   E. Roland Harriman Harness Horse of theYear: Wiggle It Jiggleit Trotter of theYear: Pinkman Pacer of theYear: Wiggle It Jiggleit 2-Year-Old Colt Trotter: Southwind Frank 2-Year-Old Filly Trotter: Broadway Donna 3-Year-Old Colt Trotter: Pinkman 3-Year-Old Filly Trotter: Mission Brief Trotting Horse: J L Cruze Trotting Mare: Bee A Magician 2-Year-Old Colt Pacer: Boston Red Rocks 2-Year-Old Filly Pacer: Pure Country 3-Year-Old Colt Pacer: Wiggle It Jiggleit 3-Year-Old Filly Pacer: Divine Caroline Pacing Horse: State Treasurer Pacing Mare: Venus Delight   United States Harness Writers Association – Awards and Honorees United States Harness Writers Association Awards Harness Racing Hall of Fame: Charles Keller III Harness Racing Hall of Fame: Bruce Nickells Communicators Hall of Fame: David Carr Communicators Hall of Fame: Jerry Connors Stan Bergstein–Proximity Award: James W. Simpson Norman Woolworth Owner: George Teague Jr. Glen Garnsey Trainer of the Year: Jimmy Takter Driver of the Year: David Miller Breeder of the Year: Hanover Shoe Farms Lew Barasch Breakthrough: Gabe Prewitt Rising Star: Montrell Teague President’s Award: Breana Carsey President’s Award: Michelle & Albert Crawford W. R. Haughton Good Guy: Jo Ann Looney-King USHWAn of the Year: Ellen Taylor Lee Anne Pooler Unsung Hero: Joanne Young January Davies Humanitarian Award: Marvin Chantler Amateur Driver of the Year: Hannah Miller Caretaker of the Year: Mike Taylor Trotting Broodmare of the Year: Margie Seelster Pacing Broodmare of the Year: Mozzi Hanover Hervey Awards - Writing: Feature: Kimberly French; Writing: News & Commentary: Dave Briggs Broadcasting: CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley Smallsreed Photography Awards - Feature:  Frances Lund; Racing:  Clive Cohen Grand Circuit – Driver: Yannick Gingras; Trainer: Ron Burke; Owner: Burke Racing US Trotting & US Harness Writers Railbird Recognition Awards - Horse Person: Joe Bellino; Racing Moment: Wiggle It Jiggleit’s Jug US Trotting & US Harness Writers Dash Winning Driver: Aaron Merriman Harness Horse Youth Foundation Service to Youth Award: Callie Davies-Gooch   Chris Tully    

A dream season for one of the country's most prolific harness racing owners ended on Friday but there's no time for rest. Trevor Casey started Friday on 90 winners for the season. It hasn't been confirmed as an official record but common sense would suggest it will be. A shoe in for owner of the year at next weekend's Harness Racing New Zealand awards night, Casey has enjoyed major success with the likes of Stent, Sky Major, Waikiki Beach, Lazarus, My Arya and Missandei. Casey had three runners on the final day of the season but wasn't concerned if he couldn't pick up a win: "I didn't think I'd ever get this many and I doubt I'll get this many again. "There's only one way to go from here and that's down, I'm very realistic about that in this game." Casey is straight back into action on Sunday with Harness Jewels winner Missandei and My Arya in Group I races at Maryborough in Victoria. Missandei will contest the Group I Redwood Classic along with the other two standouts of the two-year-old trotters crop from the New Zealand season, High Gait and Conon Bridge. Casey won the race in 2013 with Daenerys Targaryen and also had My Arya in the field last year. "I'm very proud of that record, to have one in the race the last three years," Casey said. The Kiwis haven't had any luck with the barrier draws for the $50,000 mobile over 2190m. High Gait has drawn barrier six, Conon Bridge the inside of the second line and Missandei barrier 12. Casey is happy with where Missandei's at given she's after she has won a race and two trials since transferring to the Brent Lilley stable after the Jewels but still rates High Gait the one to beat from the front line. The Paul Nairn-trained Conon Bridge blew his chances in the Jewels with a break but did return to Ashburton to win a C1-C2 trot on July 19 before heading across the Tasman. Mark Purdon will drive High Gait, Anthony Butt takes the reins on Missandei and Bob Butt has crossed the Tasman to drive Conon Bridge. My Arya will have her second start back after a break in the Group I Victoria Trotters Derby. Casey said her last start second was better than it looked after a gear change to remove the over-check and pole did not work. My Arya has won eight of nine starts in Australia this season and Casey is expecting plenty of improvement as the Angus Hall filly prepares to win back to back Breeders Crowns. She will start from barrier four in the 2690m mobile but Casey said Speeding Spur will be tough to beat despite his second row draw. Mat Kermeen Reprinted with permission of Stuff NZ - Check site here

Saint John Harness Horsemen Association honoured its top harness racing horsemen and equine performers on Saturday night with the coveted Horse of the Year award handed out among all other categories for 2013.   Starting with the aged categories two-year-old filly was Absolootly Hot, owned by the Dooley Boys Racing stable and Scott Hubbard taking top prize. She is a daughter of Coastocoast Yankee and she earned over $17,000 on the season and took a record of 1:59.4.   Two-year-old colt and gelding winner was Settlement Request, owned by Alfred Barrieau of Dieppe, N.B and Mike Clinton of Saint John. Gilles Barrieau trained and drove the gelding to over $34,000 in earnings and a record of 1:58. He too is by Coastocoast Yankee.   In the three-year-old colt and gelding category it was the sensational Untouchable One, owned by Dooley Boys Racing stable. He captured both the Maritime Breeders final and the Atlantic Sires Championship. He took a record in the Maritimes of 1:55.2 and has since eclipsed that record in the U.S with a sparking 1:50.4 win.   Three-year-old filly of the year was no surprise as Ramblinglily took top honours for the connections of Norm Leger and Allan Jones. She captured the prestigious Maritimer in Saint John and scored numerous stakes wins. She won ten of fifteen in 2013 and just shy of $ 60,000 in earnings. Her fastest win of the year was a 1:56.1 win in P.E.I.   Dance Hanover captured the Aged Horse of the Year trophy for the Ultimate Stables of Greater Lakeburn, N.B. He had a very consistent 2013 with twenty-three top three efforts in twenty-nine starts. His best winning time was 1:57.3 for the son of Astreos. He should surpass $ 100,000 in earnings in 2014 as he is less than five-thousand short.   Ultimate Stables ended up sweeping the aged category as the mare Ultimate Spirit was named top distaff pacer. She took a life's mark in Saint John of 1:57.2 and recorded nine wins. In 2009, she was a $1000 yearling purchase and has banked over $ 51,000 lifetime. Sifroi Melanson is the owner/ trainer of the Ultimate Stables who continue to develop solid horses year after year.   Most improved horse on the grounds this season was O K Elegant. Owned by Dr. Mitchell Downey, the five-year-old Dragon Again mare took a new speed badge over Saint John of 2:00.2 and scored twenty-eight top three finishes on the year. Mike Downey drives and trains the mare.   Claimer of the year was awarded to Dusty Lane Oscar after a tremendous 2013 for young horsemen Chris Davies and the rest of Team Davies. At nine years old, he took a new mark of 1:57 in 2013 and registered ten wins. He also went past the fifty-win plateau lifetime and earned just shy of $ 8500.   "Oscar" also captured a special award as he was recognized as the fan favorite in 2013. Visits to victory lane was also a packed place to be and had a stretch last year where he won seven of eight starts. Chris also reached a huge milestone recently as he become a father for the first time.   Oldtime Robbi award was presented to the consistent Magical Alex for owner/ trainer Bob MacNeil of Saint John, N.B. He showed his toughness starting thirty-eight times in 2013, He won ten of those starts and now has over $ 36,000 in earnings. He was an $ 1100 yearling purchase in 2010 and has proven to be a solid campaigner as he enters his seven-year-old campaign.   Overall Horse of the Year seemed like a battle of the three year old winners and it was Ramblinglily who came out on top as the top horse after her noted sensational season.   In the horsemen categories, Gilles Barrieau was named top driver while Andrew Ward captured top training honours.   Mike Downey was named Horseperson of the year while his son Mitch was named Owner of the Year. Both awards were voted on by their peers.   Congratulations to all the winners and nominees from the Saint John Harness Horsemen.      

Nominees for harness racing top horsemen awards have been announced by the Saint John Harness Horsemen for the upcoming awards gala.   Horse person of the Year will be a three way race between Mike Downey, Wayne Hubbard, and Bob MacNeil. Downey was inducted this year into the Fredericton Raceway Wall of Fame and will be looking to build on that momentum.   Owner of the year has also attracted three very deserving finalists. This award will be sponsored by Standardbred Canada and will be presented by Darren Crowe at the May 10th ceremonies.   Ultimate Stable, Dr. Mitchell Downey, and the Downey Stables will compete for the coveted award. This should be a tough category and the S.J.H.H.A would like to congratulate the nominees.   Scott Waddell    

The Alberta Standardbred Horse Association (ASHA) has announced the nominees for its 2013 awards banquet, which will be held on Saturday, February 15 at the Northlands Park Paddock Theatre. Cocktails are at 6 pm and dinner/awards  starts at 7 pm. Tickets are $50 per person and to purchase tickets please call 1-800-852-5985. The nominees are listed below. Two-Year-Old Filly - Rummys Command, Justapassin Fanci, Shark Festival Two-Year-Old Alberta Filly - Nighttraintovegas, Triple Action, Sweet Sugar Two-Year-Old Colt/Gelding - Ghost Pine, National Debt, Jet Tracker Two-Year-Old Alberta Colt/Gelding - Comes Home First, Blue Eyed Cowboy, Pass The Port Three-Year-Old Filly - Contesta Hanover, American Passion, Keep The Dream Three-Year-Old Alberta Filly - GTs Selene, Crackers Hot Shot, Emotions Run Wild Three-Year-Old Colt/Gelding - Beren Hanover, Senga Nanjeing, Big N Bad Three-Year-Old Alberta Colt/Gelding - Premium Attaction, Play Me Right, Blue Star Admiral Champion Aged Mare - Feelin Flush, Blue Star Beauty, Credit Card Junkie Champion Aged Horse/Gelding - Trust The Artist, Smooth Criminal, Flak Jacket Claimer Of The Year - Fillies/Mares - Just Saucy, Fancy Camelot, Feelin Flush Claimer Of The Year - Colts/Geldings - Greek Ruler, Raging Fingers, Da Terror Groom Of The Year - Christine Scott, Amy Henry, Christine Cutting Trainer Under 200 Starts - Marjorie Dumont, Richard Schneider, Gerald McGinn Driver Under 200 Starts - Rene Goulet, Deborah McLeod, J.F. Gagne Trainer Of The Year - Kelly Hoerdt, Travis Cullen, Keith Clark Driver Of The Year - Travis Cullen, Gerry Hudon, Brandon Campbell Horseman Of The Year - Travis Cullen, Kelly Hoerdt, Gerry Hudon Owner Of The Year - Kelly Hoerdt & Blair Corbeil, Rod Starkewski, Blair Thomas Breeder Of The Year - William Zaretsky, Allan & Kathleen Neurauter, Meridian Farms/Bill Andrew Horse Of The Year - To Be Announced Breeders Recognition Award - Larry Thomas

The Gordon Rothacker Medal has become the trots night of nights and this year was no different as the sport recognised one of the true champions of the game. Graeme Lang, affectionately known as the doyen of harness racing, was presented with the 2013 Gordon Rothacker Medal on a memorable night at Tabcorp Park Melton. It was no surprise to most involved in the trots when Lang was announced as the winner given his long and illustrious career in the sport. A champion trainer and driver, Lang was accomplished in all facets securing award after award through the late 1960’s and 1970’s into the 1980’s. The five time leading Victorian state trainer and two time leading Victorian state driver was crowned the leading Australian driver in 1979/80. Lang will always be remembered for his topline squaregaiter Scotch Notch who was not only an Inter Dominion Trotting Champion, but also campaigned successfully throughout North America. Lang has had a massive influence on the sport for many years and that includes his family history which has gone from strength to strength with his sons Chris and Gavin dominating their chosen areas. Chris, as a squaregaiting trainer and driver is unparalleled while Gavin has proven superior to any driver before him in the cart. Graeme Lang still remains an active participant in the sport and he proved he still has his eye in as a trainer when he produced Save A Sixpence to win the Group 3 Holmfield last season defeating boom Kiwi filly Habibti. Harness Racing Victoria and the entire trotting fraternity have been lucky to see Graeme in full flight and he is a deserved winner of the 2013 Gordon Rothacker Medal. There were plenty of other winners on the night amongst the Country Clubs and representatives who have worked so tirelessly in the past 12 months. The best Choice Hotels Country Cup meeting went to the Nyah club for their return to racing at the Swan Hill circuit and a hugely successful night which saw a mammoth crowd attend the first Country Cup of the season. Paul Rowse, from the Ballarat club, took out the full-time secretary of the year while at the same time Ballarat were afforded the honour of being the club of the year for those who had conducted over 16 meetings. Bernadette Costantino was the part-time secretary of the year for her diligent work at the Wangaratta track. Kyabram secured the Graduation club of the year for the second time running. Despite having just two meetings per season, the club puts on trials for participants every Sunday morning with their training centre accommodating for up to 50 horses at any one time. Yarra Valley continues to go from strength to strength and the innovative club have been regarded as the club of the year for those who had less than 16 meetings in the past season. Thanks in part to their massive Melbourne Cup Day extravaganza, this year their Oaks day meeting continued the Cup week theme with an excited crowd out at the trots. And that’s where the next award went with Yarra Valley taking out best on-course promotion for their Oaks Day. The club doubled its event attendance in 2012 with an appetizing array of on-course activities, including fashions on the field and free ladies and kids enclosures. Promoting the event with an exhibition at Eastland Shopping Centre over 4 days, the Yarra Valley club is quickly consolidating their Oaks Day meeting as one of the highlights of the local social calendar. The award for the best local media – traditional went to Mildura for their coverage across the Sunraysia Daily, WIN TV and ABC Radio to name a few. Bendigo took out the category for best local media – digital thanks to the advent of their social media platforms and up-to-date website. The Shepparton Club were acknowledged as the best presented in the state thanks to the on-track experience which patrons receive when heading to Quest raceway. Stawell legend Reg Cooper was the winner of the Association of Victorian Country Harness Racing Clubs Volunteer Service Award and rightly so after another year of helping the Western Victorian track. Cooper has full-filled many roles including the Club president for 13 years, track supervisor and swabbing attendant. The night couldn’t have been complete without a special commendation to the Horsham club who have had another terrific 12 months and was acknowledged for its high level of professionalism and consistency across all categories. The Pearl Kelly award this season went to Lisa Miles following another terrific year as both trainer and driver. A winner of the 2007 Young Achiever of the Year award, Miles has gone on to win the Vin Knight Medal in 2009 and train a string of Group 1 horses including Villagem. Special mention must also go to distinguish service medal winners in Gus Underwood and Rob Merola. Underwood has been a terrific advocate of the sport in the state’s north as a journalist for a raft of newspapers including the Shepparton News while Merola is most well-known as the managing director of SEW-Eurodrive and as the owner of star pacer Caribbean Blaster. Harness Racing Australia also distributed awards on the night with Mindarie Priddy winning the National Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year and Chris Alford taking out the JD Watts national driver’s award following a brilliant season. Alford was also recognised for his 5000 career wins which came with a flourish at the end of October. Art Major made a thorough clean-sweep of the HRA Stallion awards by taking each and every single category up for offer; that being the Leading Sire of 2YO’s by stakemoney, Leading Sire of 3YO’s by stakemoney, Leading Sire of 2YO’s by Winners, Leading Sire of 3YO’s by Winners and Leading Sire of Winners. The Harness Racing Victoria Media Awards were also presented to the deserving winners. The Best Country Feature went to Raelee Tuckerman – Bendigo Advertiser for her story on retired standardbreds. Best Radio Feature went to Len Baker and the Harness Review team for their interview with Neville Welsh following his Gordon Rothacker Medal win last year. The Best Feature (Print or Internet) went to John Peck for his story on Gavin Lang and his 5000 career victories. Best News Story (Print or Internet) was again taken out by the Bendigo Advertiser, this time Nicole Ferrie for the emotional ‘Tears Flow After Courageous Win’. The full list of award winners is below: Gordon Rothacker Medal Graeme Lang A.V.C.H.R.C Volunteer Service Award Reg Cooper VHRSC Owner of the Year Heather Anderson 2 year old Filly of the Year Mindarie Priddy Sire of the Year Art Major USA JD Watts Award Chris Alford 5000 Winners Presentation Chris Alford HRV Media Award – Best Country Feature Raelee Tuckerman – Bendigo Advertiser HRV Media Award – Best Radio Feature Len Baker HRV Media Award – Best Feature (Print or Internet) John Peck HRV Media Award – Best News Story (Print or Internet) Nicole Ferrie – Bendigo Advertiser Best Local Media Coverage – Traditional Mildura Best Local Media Coverage - Digital Bendigo Special Commendation – local media Horsham Graduation Club & Secretary of the Year Kyabram Best on Course Promotion Yarra Valley Best Presented Track / Venue Shepparton Most Successful Country Cup Meeting Nyah @ Swan Hill Secretary of the Year – 16 Meetings or Less Bernadette Costantino Frank Ryan Memorial Secretary of the Year Paul Rowse Country Club of the Year – 16 Meetings or Less Yarra Valley Country Club of the Year – More than 16 Meetings Ballarat Pearl Kelly Award Lisa Miles Distinguished Service Medal Rob Merola Gus Underwood   Harness Racing Victoria

The 2012/13 harness racing season was capped off with the announcement of Majestic Mach as the Queensland Horse of the Year tonight. The Grant Dixon-trained gelding won the award for his stellar three-year-old season winning the Group 1 Queensland Derby, the Group 2 Nursery Pace 3YO colts and geldings Final and QBred Final 3YO colts and geldings as well as three Group 3 events. In the eyes of the industry media and administrator voting panel, the gelding beat other Horse of the Year nominees Forever Gold and Devil Dodger. Majestic Mach’s owners Solid Earth Pty Ltd managed by Kay Seymour accepted the award at the 2013 Queensland Harness Awards Night on Sunday, October 13 at the Tattersall’s Club with a host of industry stakeholders. The star three-year-old also took home the Queensland 3YO Horse of the Year title as well as the QBred Achiever of the Year. The performance of Majestic Mach and stablemates Charming Allie and Joys A Babe ensured that owner and breeder Solid Earth Pty Ltd secured the Queensland Breeder and Owner of the Year titles also. Hosted by Racing Queensland, the night recognised the season’s achievements in the harness racing industry. Grant Dixon was the recipient of the Queensland Trainer of the Year, also taking home the Albion Park, Gold Coast and Redcliffe Harness Racing Clubs’ Trainers Premierships. Mathew Neilson was awarded the Queensland Driver of the year, also claiming the Redcliffe Drivers Premiership. The 2013 Queensland Harness Awards winners include: Queensland Horse of the Year – Majestic Mach Sponsored by Sky Racing Queensland Trainer of the Year – Grant Dixon Sponsored by TattsBet Queensland Driver of the Year – Mathew Neilson Sponsored by TattsBet Queensland 4YO & Older Horse of the Year – Forever Gold Queensland 3YO Horse of the Year – Majestic Mach Queensland 2YO Horse of the Year – Hezarealgem Queensland Breeder of the Year – Solid Earth Pty Ltd Queensland Owner of the Year – Solid Earth Pty Ltd QBred Achiever of the Year – Majestic Mach Chairman’s Award – Narissa McMullen Sponsored by Racing Queensland Hall of Fame – Chris Garrard and Wayne Wilson BOTRA Pegasus Award – Warren Cummins BOTRA Junior Driver Encouragement Award – Lauren Jones and Trent Moffatt BOTRA Rising Star Award – Narissa McMullen and Adam Sanderson Trotting Horse of the Year – Mister Malakye Trotting Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon Trotting Trainers Premiership – Neville Ryan Redcliffe HRC Horse of the Year – In Default Redcliffe HRC Drivers Premiership – Mathew Neilson Redcliffe HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon Gold Coast HRC Horse of the Year – Jaxon Fella Gold Coast HRC Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon Gold Coast HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon Albion Park HRC Horse of the Year – Montana Pablo Albion Park HRC Drivers Premiership – Grant Dixon Albion Park HRC Trainers Premiership – Grant Dixon For the first time in years, Racing Queensland once again inducted two nominees into the Hall of Fame. Both Chris Garrard and Wayne Wilson were inducted for their many years of service to the industry. Chris Garrard Chris Garrard is one of Queensland harness racing’s most prominent personalities. Initially a hobbyist with a trainer-driver licence, ‘CJ,’ as he is commonly referred to, has drastically increased his involvement in the sport over the last three decades and he now wears many hats with pride. His sponsorship contributions through his various businesses have seen him acknowledged as one of the industry’s major benefactors. He is an active owner and breeder, and races a team of pacers under the care of his son Daren Garrard. He has also played a key role in the committees of Albion Park and Redcliffe, where he is the patron. With a family history that goes back generations, Chris Garrard has a deep passion for harness racing. Wayne Wilson Wayne Wilson began broadcasting the trots soon after his arrival in Brisbane in the late sixties and early seventies. He became the voice of Queensland harness racing in 1976 until his retirement at Village Kid’s Inter Dominion in 1986 when he took on the full-time role of the metropolitan gallops caller. The recipient of many media awards and more recently, an induction into the Hall of Fame at the 2013 Queensland Thoroughbred Awards, Wayne modernised the harness broadcast and was one of the leaders in his field. He has given the Queensland harness industry some great promotion over many years through radio and television and still to this day, retains a love and active interest in the harness industry. Elaine Dittman

It may have taken Democracy ten starts to win his first race, but the Nigel McGrath trained 4yo looks like he has well and truly hit his straps now. Today's (Wednesday February 6) $18,000 harness racing feature was the son of Christian Cullen's fifth career win and fourth in his last eleven starts.

Richard Gutnick, a self-described '30-year overnight success in harness racing' who campaigned the Harness Horse of the Year (Chapter Seven) and the richest Standardbred of 2012 (Market Share), has been named the Norman Woolworth Owner of the Year in balloting conducted by members of the U. S. Harness Writers Association, while New Jersey's White Birch Farm, the owner/breeder of the Pacer of the Year, Captaintreacherous, and a nursery that has sent out five $1 million winners, was elected Breeder of the Year.

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