Goshen, NY --- The Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame was informed today that last year’s Living Horse Hall of Fame inductee, Precious Bunny, died April 20, 2015 at Empire Stallions in Victoria, Australia. Bred by Alfred Ochsner Jr., 1991 Horse of the Year and Little Brown Jug winner Precious Bunny was foaled on May 6, 1988 at Windhaven Farm in Cranbury, N.J.. Purchased in 1990 by R. Peter Heffering of Port Perry, Ontario, Precious Bunny was trained by Bill Robinson and driven by Jack Moiseyev. He raced from 1990-1991 and had a lifetime summary of 39-21-5-4. As a 2-year-old, Precious Bunny had 14 starts, winning a New Jersey Sire Stakes event and finishing the season with a mark of 1:57.2 and $63,920 in earnings. In 1991, 3-year-old Precious Bunny won 20 of 25 starts, including the North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace (setting the stakes record in the second fastest race mile in harness racing history and fastest mile ever under the lights -- 1:49.4), Art Rooney Pace (stakes record), Adios (tying the stakes and the world record for fastest mile by a Standardbred on a five-eighths-mile track and setting the world record for a second heat by a Standardbred on a five-eighths-mile track -- 1:50.4), Little Brown Jug (in straight heats with an electrifying start in the first), Cleveland Classic (stakes record), NJSS final and Windy City Pace. With his Cleveland Classic victory, Precious Bunny became only the second Standardbred in North America (Beach Towel--1990) to earn more than $2 million in a single season ($2,217,222). He was the first to win two $1 million races in one season (North America Cup and Meadowlands Pace), and the first to win the Little Brown Jug, North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace and The Adios in the same year. Precious Bunny was voted Horse of the Year and 3-year-old Pacing Colt in both the U.S. and Canada. At the time of his retirement, he ranked as the number one single-season moneywinning Standardbred of all time and the fifth-leading moneywinning pacer of all time. Precious Bunny stood at Castleton Farm in New York from 1992 to 2000. He has sired North American winners of more than $50 million, with 181 in 1:55, 142 $100,000 winners and three millionaires, including 2001 Horse of the Year and Hall of Famer Bunny Lake p,1:49s ($2,843,476), Stout p,1:49.2 ($1,506,390) and 2001 O’Brien Award winner Precious Delight p,3,1:51.1 ($1,096,981). Precious Bunny was exported to New Zealand in September 2000. He was elected to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2004 and enjoyed his retirement at Empire Stallions in Victoria, Australia. Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame
R I P Tony Chiaravalle. He owned the 1993 Pace winner Presidential Ball and was the original owner of the third place finisher that year Riyadh. R I P Matts Scooter-1988 Meadowlands Pace winner-sire of Mach Three 2002 Pace winner. Grandsire of Somebeachsomewhere-THE most prohibitive Pace favorite of the 21st century/ R I P Joe Muscara. He owned the 2002 Pace winner Mach Three and his Muscara Trust co-owns elim divisional winner He's Watching, one of the favorites in this Saturday's race. $776,000 Pace Purse. Not counting the two years with a supplemental entry, (2000 and 2008), this is the first time since 1990 that the purse is at least $100G higher than the previous year: 1989 $852,000 Dexter Nukes 1990 $1,153,500 Beach Towel Sire Well Said looks to do-with two chances-what has been done SEVEN TIMES in Meadowlands Pace history. Win the Pace with his first crop. (Sometimes Said, Tellitlikeitis) 1984 Happy Motoring sired On The Road Again 1985 Niatross sired Nihilator 1997 Artsplace sired Dream Away 1998 Life Sign sired Day In A Life 2005 Western Ideal sired Rocknroll Hanover 2008 Art Major sired Art Official 2013 Somebeachsomewhere sired Captaintreacherous If you're betting either He's Watching or Luck Be Withyou, you have recent history on your side. Tim Tetrick and Ron Pierce have won 6 of the last 7 editions of the Meadowlands Pace, THE most dominant TWO-driver run in the races 37 year history. (Of those 6 wins between them, 3 each, 4 of those 6 were NOT favored) Ron Burke will try and do what has been done THREE TIMES before. Be the Leading trainer at the Meadowlands for the meet AND win the Meadowlands Pace. J K Endofanera 1993 and 1994 Bill Robinson did it with Presidential Ball and Cams Card Shark 1997 Brett Pelling did it with Dream Away 2004 Mark Harder did it with Holborn Hanover, who was 2-22 lifetime coming into the race and lit up the board at 58-1 "MILLER TIME?" Maybe. There are three driving "MIllers" in the race-Dave and Brett and Marcus. That doesn't even count trainer Erv. The first ever TRAINER named Miller to be in the Pace-as well as the first ever drive-BOTH finished 3rd. Del Miller trainer 3rd 1980 Tyler B Jim Miller driver 1979 3rd with Tijuana Taxi THROWBACK TIME? Some Pace participants in 2014 were prominent at the Meadowlands in the 1980s. Val D'Or Farms (Always B Miki) 3 times made a 1980s Pace final. 4th with Masquerade in 1986, 7th and 11th with Ringaleevio and Paladium Lobell in the 1988 edition Steve Elliott was 10th with Souffle in the 1986 final of the Pace, and was 3rd and then 2nd in the 1988 and 1989 Trainer Standings here Joe Holloway won FOUR races at the Meadowlands in the 1970s-including twice with a pacer named Pentagon as a DRIVER. In the 1980s, Joe became the first ever Meadowlands trainer to win as many as 106 races in a singe meet-1988 Jim Campbell was the 1989 Meadowlands Training Leader. He also started in the Pace with a pair in 1987-3rd with Run The Table and 12th with Dictionary Peter Blood is one of the owners of Doo Wop Hanover. As a trainer here-he was second in the 1988 Wilson-the LAST one to go for $1 Million-with Nukes Image to Kassa Branca. The following year, he went 1-2 in the Wilson conso. Pierce Pace Potpourri Ron Pierce drove the shortest priced Pace winner of the new millennium-$2.80 Well Said 2009. Ron Pierce UPENDED the shortest priced Pace STARTER of the new millennium-Somebeachsomewhere-10 cents on the dollar-in 2008 with Art Official. (Art Official-incidentally-sold as a $4,000 WEANLING at a Meadowlands January sale) NUMBERS 17 of the 37 Pace winners were sired by a horse who himself raced in the Pace final. ONLY ONE-Real Desire is the ONLY horse to win $3 Million-be Horse Of The Year and win the Meadowlands Pace and NOT be in the Hall Of Fame ONLY ONE Pace winner won from the second tier-On The Road Again 1984 Post 12 THREE Homebreds in the Pace final field. The 2013 Hambletonian had three homebreds win all three eliminations and then the final. Creatine, Smilin Eli and Royalty For Life 20-1 or better-Tellitlikeitis will surely be one of the longshots in the 2014 Pace final field. Rarer than rare for the North America Cup FAVORITE-ALSO the Meadowlands Pace elimination FAVORITE, to be an also-ran in the wagering in the Pace final. FIVE catch-drivers have gone into the Hall Of Fame the past TWO decades. Only five. ANNIVERSARY 23 years to the day of Precious Bunny winning the 1991 Meadowlands Pace. July 12, 1991. That marked the first time in history a horse won TWO million $ races in the same year (Nihilator did it in 1984 and 1985) John Campbell drove him in the North America Cup to victory, but opted off for Artsplace in the Pace final and Jack Moiseyev won with the Cam Fella colt. HOY. It was also the first of four STRAIGHT Pace winners for Cam Fella as a stallion-ironic when you consider that Cam Fella finished his career 57 straight times on the board-the last time he MISSED the board? 1982 Meadowlands Pace elimination!! 7th Ron Pierce is on top in North America in $$$. 58 Years of age. This stat is especially interesting when you consider that-in 2006-he was and is the ONLY 50 Years Old to EVER lead the way, and now at 58 is threatening to do the same Golden Receiver's barn change-AFTER winning $2 Million-brings back memories of possibly the two greatest horses to ever undergo a barn change. Seatttle Slew and Artsplace. WIDE OPEN PACE?-2013 TOLD US EXACTLY THAT Many live candidates to win the 2014 Meadowlands Pace. And why not. In 2013-the LEADING 2 YO colt pacing earner made $390G-Arthur Blue Chip. This marked the first time since 1977 that the leading $$-winning freshman pacing colt did NOT have at least $400G on his card. No No Yankee had $211G in 1977 (Ironically-the FIRST year of the Pace) Dave Miller-John Campbell Dave Miller-6 days after entering the Hall Of Fame, hopes to do what only John Campbell has done prior. Go into the Hall Of Fame and win either the Hambletonian or the Meadowlands Pace the SAME year. 1990-John Hambo Harmonious. Dave handles Always B Miki IF Marcus Miller wins the Meadowlands Pace-he WILL become the YOUNGEST driver ever to do so. Tetrick also did it at 25 in 2007 with Southwind Lynx, Marcus a few months younger. Canadian Influence 5 of the 6 inside posts in the 2014 Meadowlands Pace have Canadian ownership. 6 of the first 12 Meadowlands Pace winners (1977-1986) had Canadian ownership. "Hall" Pass-OOPS Pace Five of the first 10 winners of the Meadowlands Pace had trainers who were Hall Of Famers. BUT-only ONE of the last 27 training winners of the Meadowlands Pace did it. Ray Remmen 1990 Beach Towel. Jimmy Takter has two shots at ending that 24 year 0-fer. Coyne-Operated Ron Coyne (National Debt) has been in the Pace before. 1999 with Washington VC. 8th. That colt then sired a $3 Million career earner by the name of Themightyquinn If either John Campbell or Ron Pierce win the Meadowlands Pace, they will be the oldest to do so. 59 and 58. Cat Manzi at 56 in 2006 with Artistic Fella currently holds than distinction. Steve Elliott is the ONLY trainer in the 2014 Meadowlands Pace field who has won this race before. And he did it twice. 2006 and 2009. There are only two trainers in Meadowlands Pace history who have won the Pace multiple times and were FAVORED in all of their wins: Elliott, Billy Haughton Billy Did it with Falcon Almhurst in 1978-9/5 choice over eventual HOY Abercrombie-and with Nihilator at 1-9 in 1985 heading a prohibitive 5 horse entry. "Starter" Kit NO 2014 Pace finalist has more than 8 starts in 2014. Yet 16 of the first 24 Meadowlands Pace winners had at LEAST NINE starts on the season entering the Pace final. Jimmy Takter (Tellitlikeitis and Lyonssomewhere) will try and do what Brett Pelling did last. Go 1-2 in the Pace. Pelling did it with Rocknroll Hanover in 2005 and Village Jolt second. He's Watching's June 13 foaling date would be THE latest ever for any Meadowlands Pace winner. (TWO of the more famous JUNE foals of all time used to be stablemates-Art Major and McArdle) SLOW STARTS? NO PROBLEM IN THE PACE Your year isn't going the greatest going INTO the Meadowlands Pace? This doesn't mean a whole lot-or at least it didn't to these brand names: 2001 Real Desire 1 for 5 going into the Pace 2000 Gallo Blue Chip 5 for 10 entering the Pace 2010 One More Laugh 2 for 6 going into the Pace 1988 Matts Scooter Just 2 for 9 entering the Pace (NOTE-the 2 YO Champion (He's Watching 2-5)-and the 2YO Breeders Crown winner (Luck Be With You 1-5)-are a combined 3/10 entering the 2014 Pace) The "OUTSIDERS?" The three outside horses in the Pace were all sired by a Pace favorite: Post 8 Sometimes Said (Well Said 2009) Post 9 Always B Miki (Always A Virgin 2007) Post 10 Doo Wop Hanover (Rocknroll Hanover 2005) Takter's Pace Breakthrough? NO Trainer in the 21st century who's campaigned a Horse Of The Year has made it to the Hall Of Fame. Jimmy Takter is the last trainer to do both-having won the HOY titles in 1997-1998-1999. Bob McIntosh went into the Hall Of Fame in 2002-and a full decade later-won his first MILLION $ race going 1-3 in the 2012 NA Cup. Jimmy Takter is looking for his very first Pace score. Ron Burke just scored his first Million $ win taking the NA Cup with J K Endofanera. The Two oldest drivers to hit the board in the Meadowlands Pace? 1978 Joe O'Brien 59-thid with Flight Director 1982 Billy Haughton 58 3rd with McKinzie Almahurst John Campbell is 59 and Ron Pierce 58 Campbell-Meadowlands Pace-Post 10 The man is amazing. Post 10 in the Meadowlands Pace in 2014 with Doo Wop Hanover. His history from post 10 in the Pace is almost beyond belief. ALL of the following are from Post 10-IN The Meadowlands Pace: 1982 Hilarion winner-first ever catch-driver to win a Million $$ race. 1997 At Point Blank second at 14-1 the colt was WINLESS (0-15) on the year!! 1999 The Panderosa got post 10 initially-AND on the redraw-and still dominated with a 26 flat final quarter in 1:49.3-then a record mile in the Pace and thus becoming the first horse ever to win TWO million $$ races BOTH in sub 1:50) 2004 3rd with Metropolitan from post 10 2007 third with Artriverderci from post 10. 5 different trainers from post 10-five times on the board. Consider that in the other 30 times any driver raced in the Pace from post 10-combined-those drivers were 3-30 ON THE BOARD! OTHER Post 10 notes...... Dave Miller's Pace debut-1995-Cinder Lane Sam came from post 10-5th-flying home in 26.1.....Pat Crowe drove exactly once in the Pace-from post 10-in 1984 12th with a colt by the name of Greener Pastures.....Brett Pelling made his Pace debut in 1993 from post 10 (No check)....Pinocchio raced in the Pace-from post 10 for Neal Shapiro... 15 times in history the Meadowlands Pace winner has been THAT YEAR'S Leading $$ winner among ALL Pacers.(MOST common of any race of the leaders) Just HOW tough is it to WIN The Meadowlands Pace? This stat might tell it best. The last THREE Triple Crown winners in the sport-NONE of those three finished first OR second in the Meadowlands Pace!! 2003 No Pan Intended 4th 1999 Blissful Hall 7th 1997 Western Dreamer 3rd Who are the three richest ever horses to have participated in the Meadowlands Pace final and NOT gotten a check? Boulder Creek $3,425,853 8th 2003 Red Bow Tie $2,673,920 9th 1997 Western Hanover $2,541,647 7th 1992 Super Tough Quiz: Can you name the three colts who led all pacers in year end earnings but did NOT compete in the Meadowlands Pace final? 1977 Governor Skipper $522,148 1998 Shady Character $1,070,569 2002 Art Major $1,562,779 Compiled by Bob "Hollywood" Heyden
Goshen, NY --- Owner-breeder William Weaver and driver David Miller, along with communicators John Pawlak and Carol Cramer, were the human guests of honor as 2014 inductees into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame at ceremonies on the Museum lawn in Goshen, N.Y., on Sunday (July 6). The annual induction dinner followed a full day of activities that included racing at the neighboring Historic Track, including the annual Hall of Fame race, the grand opening of the Roosevelt Raceway exhibit and a cocktail reception in the William R. Haughton Memorial Hall. he Meadows and Little Brown Jug track announcer Roger Huston, who served as emcee, called fellow Hall of Famer Bill O’Donnell to introduce the night’s first inductee. The former driver thanked Weaver for allowing him to drive Valley Victory and applauded him for his dedication to his horses. “Some of the old horses he raced, he still boards those horses and lets them live out their lives,” said O’Donnell. “He should be commended for that.” Weaver, who has enjoyed success with his Valley High Stable, said he didn’t expect this honor. “I’m humbled, happy and surprised to be here today,” said Weaver. “The last two years of my life, there have been some setbacks. I figured this was just someone throwing the screws in.” He thanked the Dancer and Duer families for training his horses over the years and acknowledged the big horse who got him to the Hall of Fame. “One of the main reasons that I’m here tonight is because I was the breeder of Valley Victory,” added Weaver. Huston’s superlative introduction of the next inductee highlighted a couple of his nicknames. “At the Meadowlands they call him Buckeye, but in Ohio he’s known as Purple Jesus,” said Huston before cueing the crowd to a resounding response of “Miller time” when he asked, “What time is it?” Miller can be a man of few words, but he was emotional as he talked about how important this honor is to him and the people who supported him along the way. “I think Roger said everything that I was going to say,” said Miller to open his acceptance speech. “I love horses and I love what I do. It’s more than I ever dreamed of.” He thanked his family for their support. “I definitely didn’t get here by myself,” added Miller. “I have the best family. I have to thank my wife Misty who does everything but drive the races.” The first communicator to be recognized spurred even greater emotion from everyone in attendance. John Pawlak, the USTA’s director of marketing known for his writing, broadcasting, announcing and editing of theTrotting and Pacing Guide, made his first industry, public appearance in a wheelchair since undergoing four surgeries for a brain tumor discovered last October. Well known for his humor, Pawlak used that talent to help his industry colleagues feel more at ease about his tribulations. “It was about the size of John Manzi’s head,” said Pawlak, referring to Monticello’s public relations man in describing his tumor. “The doctors told me it also had a moustache and toupee.” To conclude, Pawlak thanked many of the colleagues that he has assisted in his various roles at the USTA. “It is humbling and I have to thank all of the writers from USHWA for this honor,” said Pawlak. Former USTA employee Carol Cramer, known for her work as a long-time Grand Circuit steward and secretary as well as her involvement in the publishing of integral industry publications, especially the annual stakes guide, joined Pawlak in the Communicators Hall of Fame. “I love this industry with a passion,” said Cramer. “It was the joy of my life when I got to go work for the USTA and when I met Jim Harrison. We did the first Care and Training book.” She thanked the numerous race secretaries who attended to be a part of her induction. Also inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame on Sunday were broodmare Hattie, 2007 Horse of the Year Donato Hanover and 1991 Horse of the Year Precious Bunny. The horses Green Speed and Windsong's Legacy were inducted as Immortals of the Hall of Fame. by Dan Leary, for the USTA
When harness racing driver David Miller headed from Ohio to the East Coast more than a decade ago, he thought it would be temporary. He was wrong. And it resulted in a permanent place among the sport's all-time greats. On Sunday, the 49-year-old Miller will be inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame during ceremonies at the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame in Goshen, N.Y. Miller has won more than 11,000 races in his ongoing career, ranking eighth among all North American drivers in history, and earned $180 million in purses, which is No. 4 all time. Also being inducted on Sunday is William Weaver, who bred influential trotting sire Valley Victory as well as several division champions. In addition, longtime U.S. Trotting Association Publicity Director John Pawlak and retired USTA Stakes Director Carol Cramer will be enshrined in the Communicators Hall of Fame. Horses being honored are Donato Hanover, Precious Bunny, Hattie, Green Speed, and Windsong's Legacy. "It means a lot to me," Miller said. "The biggest honor you can receive in your profession, I think, is for people to think of you that way. To be put in the Hall of Fame with people that I looked up to, it's very special. I feel privileged. I'm sure it will hit me more once I'm there. I haven't been too focused on it yet." Miller was voted Driver of the Year in 2003 when he led North America in purses and guided No Pan Intended to the Pacing Triple Crown. He has won a total of 11 Triple Crown races (combined pacing and trotting) and 14 Breeders Crown trophies. He is a three-time winner of the Little Brown Jug and one of only two drivers to capture the Little Brown Jug and its filly companion race, the Jugette, in the same year. He has won at least $10 million in purses 12 times, the most of any driver in history, and trails only Hall of Famers John Campbell, Ron Pierce and Mike Lachance in career earnings. Miller was already a star in his native Ohio when he headed to the East Coast in the late 1990s. He captured multiple driving titles at the Meadowlands Racetrack in the early 2000s and has been a force on the Grand Circuit ever since he made the move. "I came out at a time when things kind of clicked for me," Miller said. "I was driving a lot of good horses. I didn't plan on it. You can't. I was very fortunate to hook up with as many good trainers that I have over the years. "Hopefully it's not over yet." Miller, who was enshrined in the Ohio Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 2010, shows no signs of slowing down. Last weekend, he won the $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial with McWicked in a world-record performance and two weeks earlier captured the $420,900 Fan Hanover Stakes with Uffizi Hanover. "I've gotten to drive a lot of great horses," Miller said. "It's more than I thought I would do. The sport has been good to me, that's for sure." by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications
Campbellville, ON --- Last weekend’s elimination winners McWicked, Tellitlikeitis and Lyonssomewhere head an extremely competitive field of 10 for the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup harness race, this Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack. The 31st edition of the world’s richest pacing event, showcasing the finest 3-year-olds on the continent, will go postward at 10:14 p.m. and will be shown live on TSN. A half-hour preview of the race will air on TSN GO from 9:30-10:00 p.m., with the race set for TSN from 9:30 p.m.–10:30 p.m. The winner will earn C$500,000. Post positions were drawn today at Mohawk, with Toronto Maple Leafs forward Dave Bolland as the guest drawmaster. Last Saturday, three Cup eliminations were held to determine the field for the final. The three winners earned their connections the right to choose a post position before the balance of the field was drawn. Seventeen of the past 30 Cup winners also won their elimination. Trainer Casie Coleman, who won the 2010 Cup with Sportswriter, sends out McWicked, who recorded the fastest elim, winning by two lengths in 1:48.3, from post two. Owned by SSG Stables, McWicked, a son of 2002 Cup third place finisher Mcardle, is a five time winner in 14 outings with career earnings of $244,707. Driver David Miller has yet to win the Cup in 13 tries, but has twice been second, including last year with a 96-1 shot Twilight Bonfire. Trainer Jimmy Takter, more renowned as a trotting conditioner for such stars as Moni Maker, Kadabra and Malabar Man, but who also directed filly pacer See You At Peelers to championship seasons, will have two Cup entrants, Tellitlikeitis (post three) and Lyonssomewhere (post four), who both won their elims in ultra-impressive fashion and who both will be solidly backed on Saturday night. Tellitlikeitis, bred and owned by Lothlorien of Cheltenham, Ontario, took his elim in a career best 1:48.4, blowing by heavily-favored He's Watching to win by 2-1/4 lengths in only his second start of the year. The regally bred son of 2009 Cup winner Well Said out of champion Kikikatie also won his season opener, a Pennsylvania Sires Stake, at Pocono Downs in May. Lothlorien has shared ownership of three previous Cup winners -- Well Said (2009), Rocknroll Hanover (2005) and Red River Hanover (2002). Takter has only started two previous Cup entrants, both in 2012, and finished second with Time To Roll. Driver Brett Miller has two previous Cup drives, finishing second in 2010 with We Will See. Lyonssomewhere, owned by Geoffrey Lyons Mound of Burford, Ontario is undefeated in five starts. The son of 2008 Cup winner and Horse of the Year Somebeachsomewhere took his elim comfortably in 1:50.1 by 1-3/4 lengths in his first stakes appearance. He’ll be driven by Corey Callahan, making only his second Cup drive after finishing fourth with Mr Wiggles in 2009. He's Watching (post seven), co-owned and trained by David Menary of Rockton, Ontario, finished second to Tellitlikeitis in his elim, but last year won all eight starts en route to a Dan Patch Award as the United States’ top 2-year-old colt pacer. Winner of a Somebeachsomewhere division on May 31 in a career best 1:49.3, the son of American Ideal will be driven by the continent’s perennial leader, Tim Tetrick, who steered champion Captaintreacherous to an authoritative score in last year’s Cup. JK Endofanera (post nine), trained by Ron Burke for owner-breeder 3 Brothers Stables of New York City, had a five-race win streak broken in his elim when finishing third as the 1-2 choice to Lyonssomewhere, while drifting out in the stretch. The son of Art Major is the field’s leading money winner with $453,517, topped by his win last year in the Governor’s Cup at the Meadowlands. He’ll be driven by Brian Sears, who steered Rocknroll Hanover to victory in the 2005 Cup. Last year’s Breeders Crown champion, Luck Be Withyou (post eight), was third to Tellitlikeitis in his elim, after finishing second to JK Endofanera in a Somebeachsomewhere division the week before in his seasonal debut. Trained by Bill Cass for owner John Craig of North York, the son of Western Ideal will be driven by Ron Pierce, who has won two Cups, with Total Truth in 2006 and Well Said in 2009. Let's Drink On It (post five), trained by Joe Seekman, is a seven-time winner in 16 starts and was third to McWicked in his elim. A son of Art Official, the only horse to defeat Somebeachsomewhere, he’ll be piloted by 21-year-old Tyler Smith, who would become the youngest driver to win the Pepsi North America Cup. Sometimes Said (post 10), another son of 2009 Cup winner Well Said, finished second to McWicked last Saturday, the ninth time in 14 outings he’s been the runner-up. Trained by Jim Campbell for owner Fashion Farms and driven by his Hall of Fame brother and record six-time Cup winner John Campbell, Sometimes Said was also second to Luck Be Withyou in last year’s Breeders Crown. Beat The Drum (post one), a son of 2007 Cup winner Tell All, finished second as a 27-1 shot to Lyonssomewhere in his elim for trainer Staffan Lind. Yannick Gingras drives the three-time winner in 17 starts, the most outings by any Cup entrant this year. Completing the field is Ideal Cowboy (post six), who finished fourth to McWicked in his elim but drew into the final. Trained by PJ Fraley, the son of American Ideal has banked $48,684 in 10 career starts. Scott Zeron will drive. In 2012, Thinking Out Loud set the stakes record of 1:47.4 at Mohawk, eclipsing the former mark of 1:48.1 established by Well Said in 2009 while Hall of Famer Bettor's Delight has won the race by the largest margin, 4-1/2 lengths, in 2001. Other winners of the Cup, which began in 1984 at Greenwood Raceway, include such champions as Jate Lobell (1987), Precious Bunny (1991), Presidential Ball (1993), Cam's Card Shark (1994), Gallo Blue Chip (2000), Rocknroll Hanover (2005), Somebeachsomewhere (2008) and Captaintreacherous (2013). The Cup was raced at Greenwood from 1984-93, followed by Woodbine from 1994-2006. It was held at Mohawk Racetrack for the first time in 2007. The shortest-priced winners, at $2.70, are Jate Lobell and Presidential Ball, while Goalie Jeff, in 1989, provided the highest win payoff, $93.60. Horseplayers will get an added bonus on Pepsi North America Cup night when Mohawk will offer three Pick-4 wagers including an “All Stakes Pick-4.” The All Stakes Pick-4, with a $100,000 guaranteed pool, will run from race seven to 10 and will feature the Roses Are Red, Mohawk Gold Cup, Fan Hanover and conclude in race 10 with the 31st Pepsi North America Cup. $1 million Pepsi North America Cup Post–Horse–Driver-Trainer-Line 1–Beat The Drum–Yannick Gingras-Staffan Lind-20-1 2–McWicked–David Miller-Casie Coleman-7-2 3–Tellitlikeitis–Brett Miller-Jimmy Takter-3-1 4–Lyonssomewhere–Corey Callahan-Jimmy Takter-4-1 5–Let's Drink On It–Tyler Smith-Joe Seekman-6-1 6–Ideal Cowboy–Scott Zeron-PJ Fraley-15-1 7–He's Watching–Tim Tetrick-David Menary-5-1 8–Luck Be Withyou–Ron Pierce-William Cass-12-1 9–JK Endofanera–Brian Sears-Ron Burke-10-1 10–Sometimes Said–John Campbell-Jim Campbell-20-1 AE–Jet Airway–Scott Zeron-Erv Miller From the Publicity Department at WEG
Goshen, NY --- The Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame reminds all friends and colleagues of this year's honorees that it's time to congratulate and remember those who have made special contributions to the sport of harness racing. This year, the harness racing community will honor David S. Miller and William B. Weaver, the newest members of harness racing's Living Hall of Fame; the newest members of the Living Horse Hall of Fame: Donato Hanover, Hattie and Precious Bunny; Immortals Green Speed and Windsong's Legacy; Communicators Carol Cramer and John Pawlak; Museum Amateur Driving Champion Steve Oldford; and Museum Pinnacle Award recipient Jack Elliott. The Museum's annual Souvenir Journal is a high-quality publication of more than 120 pages containing many historical and informative features and images. Advertising in this eye-catching collector's item will get your message to people in the harness racing community and beyond. Thousands of copies are distributed at major racing venues and events in North America and Europe. If those being honored on Hall of Fame Day, Sunday, July 6, 2014 have touched your life, your family or your business in a special way, we urge you to send a message of congratulations through this beautiful medium. The Souvenir Journal is an official, in-house, Museum-approved fundraising project and is therefore tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Ad space reservations should be sent as soon as possible. THE DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, MAY 30. Premium space is sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Price sheets and ad sizes are available by calling Janet Terhune at 845-294-6330 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further information. From the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame
The Living Horse Hall of Fame nominating committee of the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame has announced the results of recent balloting to determine the 2014 inductees into the Harness Racing Living Horse Hall of Fame. Annual members (in good standing) voted for the two horses they felt best exemplified greatness. Their choices are racehorses Donato Hanover and Precious Bunny. The other nominees were Fool's Goal, Real Desire and S J's Photo. Also entering the Living Horse Hall of Fame in 2014 will be broodmare Hattie, having met the required criteria for induction (see below). Donato Hanover, Precious Bunny and Hattie will be inducted on Hall of Fame Day, Sunday, July 6th, 2014. The ceremonies honoring these extraordinary Standardbred horses will take place during the Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame's annual dinner. For information on the Hall of Fame weekend and other festivities surrounding this important occasion visit www.harnessmuseum.com from April 2014 onward or call or write the Museum at 240 Main Street, Goshen, NY 10924. Phone: 845-294-6330. Standardbreds are only eligible for nomination to harness racing's highest accolade if they comply with the following strict criteria: They must be retired from racing for five years and had a drug-free career. In addition, racehorses must have won 75% of their lifetime starts, or gone undefeated in a single season campaign of 12 or more races, or been the winner of $3 million lifetime or named Harness Horse of the Year (US and/or Canada). Stallions must rank among the 10 all-time leading money-winning sires at their gait or have sired at least 100 $200,000 winners or been a leading money-winning sire at his gait in three or more seasons. BROODMARES are automatically elected if they have produced a $1 million winner and two other winners of $500,000 OR produced a Harness Horse of the Year (US and/or Canada) and another $500,000 winner. The 2014 LIVING HORSE HALL OF FAME INDUCTEEs Donato Hanover (Nominated as Racehorse) 3,1:50.1 ($2,998,777) Bay Horse, 2004 (Andover Hall - D Train - Donerail) 2007 Hambletonian Stake winner and Horse of the Year Donato Hanover was the first trotter in history to earn more than $2 million in a single season. Foaled on May 3, 2004, he raced in 2006-2007 and never finished off the board, compiling a career record of 22-19-1-2. He is currently the fourth-leading single-season moneywinning Standardbred of all time. In 2006, two-year-old Donato Hanover finished third in his career debut, but would win his remaining 8 starts. The freshman earned $662,587 and was voted Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year. Major victories included the Peter Haughton Memorial (in a stakes record 1:55) and Breeders Crown. As a three-year-old in 2007, Donato Hanover would extend his winning streak to 19, remaining undefeated until his last 2 races in November. Major victories that year included the Stanley Dancer Memorial, Hambletonian Stake, World Trotting Derby, Canadian Trotting Classic and Kentucky Futurity. Donato Hanover earned $2,336,190 that year, and became the first trotter in the history of the sport to surpass career earnings of $2.5 million during his three-year-old season. He broke the single-season moneywinning record for a trotter by well over $400,000 and was voted 2007 Horse of the Year. At the time of his retirement, Donato Hanover held the record for the fastest trotting mile on a mile track (1:50.1) and co-owned the record for fastest two-heat trotting race on a mile track (3:41.2). As a sire, Donato Hanover has produced winners of over $12.6 million, including 2011 Two-Year-Old Filly Trotter of the Year and Breeders Crown winner Check Me Out 3,1:51.2 ($1,903,795). Precious Bunny (Nominated as Racehorse) p,3,1:49.4 ($2,281,142) Bay Horse, 1988 (Cam Fella - Bunny's Wish - B.G's Bunny) 1991 Horse of the Year Precious Bunny was foaled on May 6, 1988. At the time of his retirement, he ranked as the number one single-season moneywinning Standardbred of all time (currently ranked ninth) and the fifth-leading moneywinning pacer of all time. Precious Bunny raced from 1990-1991 and had a lifetime record of 39-21-5-4. As a two-year-old in 1990, Precious Bunny had 14 starts, winning a New Jersey Sire Stakes event and finishing the season with a record of 1:57.2 and $63,920 in earnings. In 1991, three-year-old Precious Bunny won 20 of 25 starts, including the North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace (setting the stakes record in the second fastest race mile in harness racing history and fastest mile ever under the lights), Art Rooney Pace (stakes record), Adios (tying the stakes record and the world record for fastest mile by a Standardbred on a 5/8-mile track, and setting the world record for a second heat by a Standardbred on a 5/8-mile track - 1:50.4), Little Brown Jug (in straight heats with an electrifying start in the first), Cleveland Classic (stakes record), NJSS final and Windy City Pace. With his Cleveland Classic victory, Precious Bunny became only the second Standardbred to earn over $2 million in a single season (Immortal Beach Towel 1990). He was the first to win two $1 million races in one season (North America Cup and Meadowlands Pace). Precious Bunny was voted Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt and Horse of the Year in both the U.S. and Canada. As a sire, Precious Bunny has sired North American winners of over $50 million, with 181 in 1:55, 141 $100,000 winners and three millionaires, including 2001 Horse of the Year and Hall of Famer Bunny Lake. Precious Bunny was elected to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2004. HATTIE (Broodmare) p,2,1:55.3 ($266,623) Bay Mare, 1992 (Abercrombie - Albaquel - Albatross) Sired by 1978 Horse of the Year Abercrombie, pacer Hattie was bred by Richard Staley and was foaled on February 9, 1992 in Wallkill, New York. Hattie raced from 1994-1996 and compiled a record of 57-8-13-17 with earnings of $266,623. Her major career victories included a division of the 1994 International Stallion Stakes at Lexington, and a second-place finish in the 1994 Breeders Crown. The progeny that qualified Hattie for the Hall of Fame are 2004 Meadowlands Pace winner Holborn Hanover p,5,1:46.4 ($2,070,648); 2006 Western Canada Pacing Derby winner Hyperion Hanover p,6,1:49.1s ($1,156,789) and Hillbilly Hanover p,4,1:49.3 ($592,218). To date, Hattie has produced six fillies and seven colts, with thirteen starters and earnings of over $5,313,000. She is currently performing her broodmare duties for Hanover Shoe Farms in Hanover, Pennsylvania. (USTA statistics as of January 2014) Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame
Frank's Best is the type of trotter that has everybody in the race looking over their shoulders when the racing gets serious, having used his long-fused tactics to put nearly $180,000 in the bank for his owner/trainer/breeder Bob Johnson. "That's his cup of tea," driver Mooney Svendsen explained when asked about the 6-year-old son of Armbro Scribe. "You give him any kind of trip to the stretch and he'll give you a :27 and change final quarter. He loves to race and he absolutely loves this track." While Franks Best had raced strictly to that wait until the stretch style in his first three starts at this meet, Svendsen decided to take a little different tact and moved much earlier with his charge in last week's clash in the Open Trot. The result was his second win at the stand, albeit in unusual fashion. "Opening week here everything worked out nicely and he looped the field and won," Mooney explained. "But then the next race we were stuck behind poor cover that only went about 10 feet and then the start after that we were forced to zig and zag and he came home in :27 2/5, but had too much to do. "The plan last week was to be aggressive if they tried to go too slow up front, and that's exactly the way it was setting up to the half. I moved him out, he hooked up with his stablemate (Inside Broadway) on the last turn and then was able to open up into the stretch and he held. He gave me a real nice burst when I popped his earplugs." Frank's Best will suit up once again with Svendsen giving directions in Saturday night's co-featured tenth race. Racing secretary Fred Kuebler has assigned the hard-hitting sidewheler the outside post in the field of eight, which familiar rivals as last week's tough luck runner-up Axle and barnmate Inside Broadway, both of whom have posed for snapshots at the top run at this meeting. A REMINDER THERE ARE THREE WAGERS EACH NIGHT WITH A REDUCED 16 PERCENT TAKEOUT RATE. THEY ARE THE 50-CENT PICK FIVE THAT BEGINS ON THE THIRD RACE; THE 20-CENT PICK 4 ON THE FINAL FOUR RACES; AND THE 10-CENT HI-FIVE ON THE NIGHTCAP. Phantom Dan, Frank's Best headline co-features Saturday's 12-race program at the Watch and Wager LLC meet at Cal Expo spotlights some of the top performers on the grounds as Phantom Dan has top billing in the Open Pace and Franks Best looms the one to beat in the Open Trot. Phantom Dan is a 5-year-old son of Little Steven out of the Precious Bunny mare Yankee Siloh who is owned by James Kennedy and Jennifer Burns and is reined and trained by Kennedy. He established his mark of 1:53 1/5 here earlier in the season and is looking to pull off a hat trick. Phantom Dan took the measure of conditioned rivals on October 26 and posted an easier-than-looks victory with Kennedy that evening. Moving up to the Open ranks while assigned the outside post proved no problem for the bay gelding at most recent asking, as he once again zipped right top and prevailed by a length and a quarter as the 3-5 favorite in that affair. One And Only was making his first appearance since a summer campaign at Vernon Downs and was a solid runner-up last week. The Bettor's Delight offspring has gone a number of big miles over this layout and will be looking to turn the tables for owners Richard Morita and David Yamada, conditioner Lino Pacheco and driver Luke Plano. Franks Best is a multiple stakes winner who comes into this assignment with nearly $180,000 on his card and a 1:56 2/5 mark. He is owned, trained and was bred by Bob Johnson and Mooney Svendsen will once again handle the lines behind the 6-year-old son of Armbro Scribe. The Johnson colorbearer got the job done at the head of the class on opening week, looping the field turning for home to win going away by a length and a half, then had to settle for a second and a third in his next two outings. Franks Best returned to his winning ways in the last clash among the best trotters on the grounds, making a big move by the half to the lead, opening up straightening for home and then just holding over a fast-closing Axle. The latter is a 4-year-old who was claimed for $5,000 in August at Running Aces and has recorded two sharp wins and two seconds in the interim for owners Dave Siegel, Bob Thronson, Greg Robinson and George Reider. Reider is the conditioner and co-owner Siegel will once again be at the controls. By Mark Ratzky for Cal Expo Harness
VERNON, NY—Newcomer Arockin Hanover captured the $12,000 Open pace; Noble Wabbit lowered his odd-distance record for 7/8ths-of-a-mile in the “Turn Back The Clock Rewind Race,” while drivers John Macdonald and Truman Gale each recorded four victories during Saturday night’s 13-race program at Vernon Downs. The Saratoga-shipper Arockin Hanover went off as the second choice in Saturday’s featured seventh session. As the favorite Sheer Brilliance cut fast fractions of :26.3, :55 and 1:22.4, Arockin Hanover drafted along back in fourth place. Entering the homestretch, Arockin Hanover revved up and closed like a gate in the wind to not only overtake the pace-setter, but draw off to an eye-popping 3-3/4-length tally in 1:51. The fast-closing finish by the speedy 5-year-old gelding resulted in his second win in succession, eighth this season and 20th all time. Gale did the driving for trainer Jason Robinson as the bay son of Rocknroll Hanover-Artaffection raised his career bankroll to more than $377,100 for owner Robert D. Main. Entering Saturday’s $4,500 fourth event as the Vernon record-holder for a 7/8ths-mile clockwise pace off a 1:42.3 effort in 2011, Noble Wabbit rallied overland from fifth in the early going, advanced to third entering the stretch and then powered home to defeat the pocket-sitting Prince Polaris by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:39. It was the first win in 2013 for the 10-year-old bay gelding, but his 37th lifetime score. MacDonald did the teaming for trainer George Ducharme and owner Heather Reese as the productive son of Precious Bunny-Noble Lady Avalon increased his lifetime earnings to $154,487. Gale, for the second time during the 86-card Downs campaign, collected four wins on a single program, while it marked the first occasion for MacDonald, a newcomer to the track this season. Dave Dewhurst, the meet’s second-leading trainer with 37 tallies, also harnessed two first-place finishers during the rainy evening. DOWNS DOINGS Gary P. Clark, the track’s leading provisional pilot at present, recorded his fourth local score after a 1:54.4 trip behind the pacer New York Kitty (owned by he and Fay Clark) in Saturday’s second session… The Kenneth Daniels-owned sophomore trotter Southwind Tule chalked up his first pari-mutuel victory following a 2:02.1 performance for trainer and driver Claude Huckabone, III in Saturday’s $3,400 third event… Only two live racing dates remain during the track’s 88-card campaign that continues through Nov. 9… Vernon’s program for Friday, Nov. 8 will start at 6:45 p.m., but the card for Saturday, Nov. 9, will begin at 6 p.m., and include a coffee mug giveaway, while supplies last, and a spectacular fireworks display to conclude the track’s 60th anniversary season…. A revised 2013, 88-program racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com. Jim Moran
Draft Bunny was an upset winner in Northfield Park’s 13th race on Friday (October 11). Dale Decker of Temperance, Michigan owns, trains and drove the mare to victory. Draft Bunny (Precious Bunny-Dunachton Clara-Nuclear Terror) started from post six and kicked from the back to win by 1/4-length in 1:56.2. Friday’s triumph increased Draft Bunny’s lifetime win tally to 23 and her career earnings to $66,482. (6) Draft Bunny (80-1) was followed across the wire by (9) I Love My Yankee (4-1) and (4) Cosmetician (8-1). Draft Bunny returned $166.00 to win; the 6-9 Exacta paid $1,448.20 and the 6-9-4 Trifecta returned $5,659.40. by Ayers Ratliff for Northfield Park
Race one saw Sweetie Hearts (Angus Hall-Sweetheart K-Muscles Yankee) win the two-year-old filly trot in 1:57.2. There were two races for two-year-old filly pacers and they were taken out by the David Menary trained Polk Dot Hanover (Western Ideal-Paling Avenue-Precious Bunny) and the Mario Baillargeon driven Brescia Seelster (Camluck-Beryl Seelster-Jate Lobell) Videos of all races are attached.
Vegas Vacation set a new record of 1:48.3 in his division of the Simcoe stakes tonight Saturday the 7th of September at Mohawk Raceway. Harness racing driver Brian Sears swept the two divisions driving Fool Me Once to win the other division. The Champlain Stakes also featured on the night with Winds Of Change, Precious Beauty and Luck Be Withyou winning Race 1: 1st Shes Da Bomb (b,f,2 - Art Major-Armbro Bombay-Western Hanover 2nd Porsche Seelster (b,f,2 - Artistic Fella-Platinum Seelster-Western Hanover) 3rd Impatience (br,f,2 - Somebeachsomewhere-Restive Hanover-The Panderosa) Race 2: 1st Your So Vain (b,c,3 - Donato Hanover-Tennis Lover-Muscles Yankee) 2nd Royalty For Life (b,c,3 - Rc Royalty-Bourbon N Grits-Donerail) 3rd Smilin Eli (b,c,3 - Muscles Yankee-Gerris Joy-Enjoy Lavec) Race 3: 1st Master Of Law (br,g,3 - Deweycheatumnhowe-Possess The Magic-Self Possessed) 2nd Punxsutawney (b,c,3 - Glidemaster-Sunseeker Kosmos-S Js Photo) 3rd Wheeling N Dealin (b,c,3 - Cantab Hall-Quick Credit-Credit Winner) Race 4: 1st Ideal Race (b,g,7 - Western Terror-Eidette Hanover-Big Towner) 2nd Thepaninsulahotel (b,h,7 - No Pan Intended-Onenightinpangkok-Matts Scooter) 3rd Twin B Impressive (b,g,4 - Bettors Delight-Impeccant-Jate Lobell) Race 5: 1st Fool Me Once (b,c,3 - Art Major-Fool That I Am-Jennas Beach Boy) 2nd Captive Audience (b,c,3 - Art Major-Captiva Island-Western Hanover) 3rd Lucan Hanover (b,g,3 - Western Ideal-Lauren Order-Dragon Again) Race 6: 1st Winds Of Change (b,c,2 - American Ideal-Arts Temptress-Artsplace) 2nd Jet Airway (br,c,2 - Jeremes Jet-Aromatic-Artiscape) 3rd Crafty Master (b,c,2 - Mister Big-Cam Odie-Camluck) Race 7: 1st Bestofbest Hanover (b,h,5 - Western Hanover-Bunny Lake-Precious Bunny) 2nd Sparky Mark (b,h,6 - Astreos-Luckbealadytonite-Camluck) 3rd Shelbys Cobra (b,g,6 - Western Ideal-Sounds Perfect-Artsplace) Race 8: 1st Precocious Beauty (b,f,2 - Art Major-Precious Beauty-Jate Lobell) 2nd Beach Gal (br,f,2 - Somebeachsomewhere-Michelle My Gal-Dragon Again) 3rd Bahama Blue (b,f,2 - Somebeachsomewhere-Isabella Blue Chip-Bettors Delight) Race 9: 1st Luck Be Withyou (b,c,2 - Western Ideal-Trim Hanover-Camluck) 2nd Fort Knox (b,c,2 - American Ideal-The Art Museum-Artsplace) 3rd Some Major Beach (b,c,2 - Major In Art-Wheres The Beach-Beach Towel) Race 10: 1st Aslan (b,g,4 - Mach Three-Skyview-Falcon Seelster) 2nd Ellis Park (br,g,4 - Rocknroll Hanover-Roller Cam-Cambest) 3rd Smokin Bear (gr,g,4 - Grinfromeartoear-Smokin Pistol-Jate Lobell) Race 11: 1st Vegas Vacation (br,g,3 - Bettors Delight-Dont You Smile-Grinfromeartoear) 2nd Sunshine Beach (b,c,3 - Somebeachsomewhere-Light Up-Artsplace) 3rd Sunfire Blue Chip (b,c,3 - American Ideal-Shot Togo Bluechip-Cams Card Shark) Race 12: 1st Grande Seelster (br,g,5 - Camluck-Glendale Kim-Troublemaker) 2nd Bestinthebusiness (b,g,5 - Another Mile-Tendin To Business-Lon Todd Hanover) 3rd Top Gear (b,g,6 - Real Desire-Trust Me Ashley-Ball And Chain) Race 13: 1st Bay Of Sharks (b,h,7 - Cams Card Shark-Whitley Bay-Tylers Mark) 2nd Red Bugler (b,g,6 - Cammibest-My Friend Flicka-Firm Friend) 3rd Clic K (ch,g,5 - Shanghai Phil-Eclatante-Bullvons Dream) All videos are attached.
Bob 'Hollywood' Heyden ranks Art Official's upset of Somebeachsomewhere in 2008 as his greatest Meadowlands Pace moment. Heyden has seen them all, as a harness racing fan and as the Meadowlands Racetrack's statistician, television personality and unofficial historian.
On July 3 Northfield Park hosted five divisions of Ohio Sires Stake racing action as part of the Wednesday 13-race program.
On Wednesday, July 3 Northfield Park offers guests the opportunity to start their holiday off right with stakes harness racing action.
Hanover, PA - With just a few weeks left to the harness racing breeding season, Hanover Shoe Farm is getting ready to close up the 2013 breeding and foaling season with another productive year according to Murray Brown, the farms public relations director.