Harness Racing Update Newsletter Archive

Friday, February 05, 2016
Kid provides heavenly win in honor of Boots

Never in the history of harness racing has the phrase “coming from the clouds” been more appropriate than when applied to the last-to-first victory by Trustworthy Kid in Wednesday (Feb. 3’s) $22,500 preferred handicap trot at The Meadows – the last victory of a storied career for legendary horseman Walter “Boots” Dunn, who had passed […]

Sunday, January 31, 2016
Bresnahan, Jr. trotter tests positive for EPO

As a result of its out-of-competition testing program, the Meadowlands Racetrack announced Saturday afternoon (Jan. 30) that six-year-old trotter Tag Up And Go has returned a positive test for the performance-enhancing substance epogen, more commonly known as EPO. Tag Up And Go, a winner of $292,745 lifetime and $127,710 in 2015, is trained by Robert […]

Friday, January 29, 2016
Blindness didn’t stop Hennessey from having one of his best years in the game

Dan Hennessey has no idea how he avoided an accident and pulled off the highway safely. The trainer just remembers the panic setting in as he sat along the road alone, frightened and suddenly completely blind somewhere in the middle of North Carolina about 500 miles from his home in Coconut Creek, FL. “It was […]

Sunday, January 24, 2016
Bold Eagle ready to fly in French classic

by Dean A. Hoffman On Saturday evening, Jan. 24, 2009, I was making my way up the steps to the ballroom at the Hotel Terrass in the Montmartre section of Paris. I was en route to a cocktail party on the eve of the Prix d’Amerique, the great French trotting classic to be contested the […]

Friday, January 22, 2016
Horsepeople craft plan to correct fatal flaw in Ontario racing

Owner Mark Beaven said there’s a fatal flaw in the three-tiered harness racing system enacted in Ontario in 2014 – it’s virtually impossible to turn a profit racing in the middle or lower tiers with the purse structure fixed at $65,000 and $35,000 per card, respectively. “How can I in good faith go to colleagues […]

Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Grant buys three horses, including the sale topper, as he and Wallace rebuild from fire

Brad Grant said he has long had his eye on what turned out to be the sale topper at Monday’s January Mixed Sale at the Meadowlands. But when the Classy Lane fire in Puslinch, ON killed four of his horses – including near-millionaire pacer Apprentice Hanover – the owner from Milton, ON decided to see […]

Sunday, January 17, 2016
Alfie Carroll goes from fractured skull, brain bleeding to Canada’s ’15 dash champion

by Dave Briggs Alfie Carroll never told anyone but family members about the skull fracture, or the fact his brain bled in three places. Canada’s leading dash-winning driver in 2015 also kept quiet – partly, in keeping with his shy personality – about the fact doctors told him he was lucky the accident had not […]

Friday, January 15, 2016
Active, quality racehorses dominate January Select Mixed Sale catalog

If you are in the market for a quality racehorse, Monday’s January Select Mixed Sale in the paddock at the Meadowlands Racetrack will provide plenty of options. “Last week, there were over 130 horses that raced over a four-day span. As of this morning, there are over 80 horses in to go this weekend,” sale […]

Sunday, January 10, 2016
Zoccali closes out Big M career by betting to aid Classy Lane victims

Darin Zoccali used his last night working at the Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment to raise $588 to donate to the victims of the Classy Lane fire in Ontario. Zoccali, who recently resigned as the East Rutherford, NJ track’s director of racing operations, put his money where his mouth is Saturday (Jan. 9) by placing a […]

Friday, January 08, 2016
Wallace slowly starting to rebuild after being decimated by Classy Lane fire

By Dave Briggs Photo: WEG drivers observed a minute of silence before Woodbine’s Thursday card in honour of the horses that died in the fire. (New Image Media) The second morning after a barn fire killed 43 horses Monday night (Jan. 4) at Classy Lane Stables in Puslinch, ON, trainer Ben Wallace watched, heartbroken, as they […]

Sunday, January 03, 2016
The reports of HRU’s death were premature

By Bill Finley When I pulled the plug on Harness Racing Update (HRU) I got over 600 emails, tweets and Facebook messages from people who told me how upset they were that we closed the publication down. Fortunately, some people were not willing to let us walk away quite so easily. A group of industry […]

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 […]