Harness Racing Update Newsletter Archive

Sunday, October 11, 2015
Harness Racing Update to Cease Publication With This Issue

By Bill Finley When Mike Farrell and I started Harness Racing Update in 2010, we believed that the harness racing industry would embrace a publication that worked feverishly to report on a sport that received very little in the way of news coverage and, just as importantly, a harness racing publication that would write about […]

Saturday, October 10, 2015
2015 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale Shows Solid Increase From A Year Ago

LEXINGTON, KY – The 2015 Lexington Selected Sale did well, despite concerns going into it that Canadian and European buyers would not be as bullish about spending this year due to their struggling economies and the cost of doing business in American currency. “We’re very pleased, our sales were very good,” Randy Manges, co-manager of […]

Friday, October 09, 2015
Southwind Frank Sizzles in World-Record Performance

LEXINGTON, KY – It was about this time last year that Ron Burke was setting the harness racing world on fire with a world-record setting 2-year-old by Muscle Hill. As the late, great Yogi Berra would say, “it’s deja vu all over again.” One year and six days after Mission Brief set a world record […]

Thursday, October 08, 2015
Good Sale or Not, Industry Must Come to Aid of Breeders

Yes, there has been a positive vibe so far this week at the Lexington Sale, particularly after the first night, which somehow managed to top what was a phenomenally good opening night in 2014. But all they really did was put a band-aid on a hemorrhaging, gaping wound. This is a sport that is swimming […]

Wednesday, October 07, 2015
Lexington Sale Holds Its Own

LEXINGTON, KY – Night two couldn’t match the opening round of the Lexington Selected yearling sale, but no one seemed to be complaining. They sold 154 horses last night for a gross of $8,621,000 and an average of $55,981. That amounted to a decline of just less than 1 percent over last year, or to […]

Tuesday, October 06, 2015
How’s This For An Encore? Lexington Up 4.3 Percent on Opening Night

LEXINGTON, KY – The main worry coming into last night’s opening round of Lexington was that things were so good a year earlier that the sale almost had to come back down to Earth. So much for that fear. The opening night of Lexington 2014 was the first time in more than 20 years that […]

Monday, October 05, 2015
After Huge Sale in 2014 Can Lexington Hit the Jackpot Again?

LEXINGTON, KY – What do you do for an encore? That seemed to be the question on everyone’s mind yesterday at the Fasig-Titpton sales grounds as buyers, sellers and the sales staff were preparing for the opening night of the 2015 Lexington Selected yearling sale. The 2014 sale was one of the most remarkable in […]

Sunday, October 04, 2015
Mission Brief Makes It Look Easy In The Bluegrass

LEXINGTON, KY – You needed to be at the Red Mile early on Saturday night to catch the brilliant Mission Brief in action. The champion daughter of Muscle Hill opened the slate of Bluegrass Series stakes on a chilly evening that did not produce fast times. Mission Brief cruised to an easy 4¾ length victory […]

Saturday, October 03, 2015
A Big-Hearted Horse on a Remarkable Streak Brings Joy to His Namesake

R. Gauwitz Hanover is making a name for himself by the number of times he’s been claimed this year, while at the same time making his namesake proud. The six-year-old Modern Art gelding, named after a 75-year-old disabled individual who lives in a nursing home in Illinois, has been claimed 11 consecutive times this year […]

Friday, October 02, 2015
Young People Aren’t Betting. Can Harness Racing Do Anything About It?

“Millennials” is a term we often read or hear, without really knowing what it means. Generally, a millennial is simply someone born between 1980 and 2000. In the US alone, there are 87 million of them, and they make over 1/3rd of all retail purchases in the country. Appealing to this demographic means big dollars […]

Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Illinois Racing Board Pulls Plug on Balmoral and Maywood

By Neil Milbert Photo: Arlington racecourse general manager Tony Petrillo (l), Hawthorne park president Tim Carey (center) and Arlington park’s owner Dick Duchossois present their case to the Illinois Gaming Board (by Amanda Vinicky) CHICAGO, IL – The Illinois Racing Board held a requiem for the bankrupt sister harness tracks, Balmoral Park and Maywood Park, when […]

Sunday, September 27, 2015
Wakizashi Hanover is “Freaky” Good Again

In a race that pitted brother-versus-brother and star-versus-star, there was a lot of hype coming into last night’s Jennas Beach Boy at Hoosier Park. In the end, though, it wasn’t much of a race. Wakizashi Hanover took care of that. Indiana-bred star Freaky Feet Pete tried his best in his first tilt on the Grand […]

Saturday, September 26, 2015
Teague Uncertain Whether Wiggle It Jiggleit Will Race in the Breeders Crown

While it looks like Wiggle It Jiggleit’s racing schedule is headed for Indiana for a Sires Stakes, it is uncertain whether he’ll be coming to Canada for the Breeders Crown. The gelding’s owner, George Teague Jr., who was returning home Friday following Wiggle It Jiggleit’s gutsy performance to win the Little Brown Jug on Thursday […]

Friday, September 25, 2015
Wiggle It JiggleIt Wins a Race for the Ages in the 2015 Little Brown Jug

DELAWARE, OH – You couldn’t script a harness race any better than the way the 2015 Little Brown Jug unfolded. Doing it the tough way for the second time in a couple of hours following a hard-fought elimination win over Artspeak, heavy favorite Wiggle It JiggleIt survived an all-out war with first elimination winner Lost […]

Thursday, September 24, 2015
Jug Outcome May Come Down to Wiggle It, Artspeak Elim

DELAWARE, OH – Scott Zeron, the driver of Artspeak, knows what’s on the line in today’s 13th race at Delaware, the second of two elims for the Little Brown Jug. “It is a big advantage (having the one post),” Zeron said. “If I can beat (Wiggle It Jiggleit) in the first elim I know I […]

Sunday, September 20, 2015
Pinkman Lives Up To Status In Canadian Trotting Classic

CAMPBELLVILLE, ON – The Canadian air certainly agrees with Pinkman. The gelding by Explosive Matter won the $700,000 Canadian Trotting Classic for three-year-old colt and gelding trotters Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Pinkman has won four times in four career starts in Canada, including his elimination last week. Last year at Woodbine Racetrack, he won […]

Saturday, September 19, 2015
Jug Sale Looks to Build On Last Year’s Success

Photo: Eden Park Equestrian Park in Sunbury, OH SUNBURY, OH – Things happened at last year’s Ohio Selected Jug Sale that people thought they’d never see in the Buckeye State. Horses selling for six figures, big names like Ron Burke and Jonas Czernyson actively bidding big dollars and horses with even modest pedigrees flying off […]

Friday, September 18, 2015
With Historical Racing Machines, Red Mile Finally Has Reason to be Optimistic

LEXINGTON, KY – When Joe Costa, the President and CEO of the Red Mile, first hit town some 15 years ago to run the Central Kentucky racetrack he reported back to the owners of the racetrack and refused to sugarcoat the situation he found himself in. “There’s nothing in the box,” he told them. The […]

Thursday, September 17, 2015
Just 10, Owner Has Big Horse, Big Dreams, Big Heart

Before you get any further into the story of Breanna Carsey and the undefeated Ohio Sire Stakes champion MJB Got Faith, you first must know this: 10-year-old Carsey really does own the horse. She makes all the decisions, has turned down lucrative offers to sell the trotter, decides what to do with the money she […]

Monday, September 14, 2015
Goshen Sale Hits the Ground Running

MIDDLETOWN, NY – No one knew quite what to expect yesterday as the first horse in the first-ever Goshen Yearling Sale stepped into the auction ring. This was a new sale at a new place and it is in direct competition with the more established Morrisville Sale. But when it was over and the last […]

Sunday, September 13, 2015
Inaugural Goshen Sale Looks Like a Winner

Give sellers a good deal, give buyers a catalogue with plenty of horses with solid looks and pedigrees and bring everyone together in a venue that is on the beaten path. That’s the idea behind today’s inaugural Goshen Sale, where some 121 yearlings will go on sale. The Goshen Yearling sale might be new but […]

Saturday, September 12, 2015
$cioto Card Evidence of Re$urgence of Ohio Racing

Trainer Chris Beaver endured the hard times in Ohio, when you could win a race and barely have enough money to fill your tank for the ride home. He was forced to move a portion of his stable to Ontario to get by, but getting by is no longer a problem in the Buckeye State. […]

Friday, September 11, 2015
Hockey and Horses are Brad Maxwell’s Life

Given that he’s only been training back full time for four years after leaving the sport to pursue a career as an assistant coach in the Ontario Hockey League, trainer Brad Maxwell is doing quite well. The onetime conditioner of standout horses such as Elegantimage, Pure Ivory, Windsong Espoir and Beastmaster, to name a few […]

Sunday, September 06, 2015
Habitat Wins an Eventful Yonkers Trot

YONKERS, NY – You had one top horse break stride and another get disqualified from second and placed fifth after a rare drivers’ objection. This Yonkers Trot had a little bit of everything, from controversy to a blow-out win from a horse that was lost in the shadow of his more highly regarded stablemate. Crazy […]

Saturday, September 05, 2015
Thanks to the “Tomato King” It Appears Fourth Pennsylvania Racetrack is a Go

Philadelphia tomato magnate Joe Procacci has taken the lead on building a casino and harness racetrack in Lawrence County, Pennsylvania and his role in the process means that the long stalled process is likely to become a reality. Procacci, who is 88, appeared before the Pennsylvania Harness Racing Commission on Thursday and announced that he […]