It was a star-studded Saturday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on June 23rd—and that was just the warm up! Eliminations for this week's Sun Stakes Saturday featured the best of the best in every category for the $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace, $500,000 Earl Beal Memorial, $500,000 Max C. Hempt Memorial Pace and the $300,000 James M. Lynch Memorial Pace. Also included on the star-studded card was a leg of the Great Northeast Open Series which was captured by Bettor's Edge in a sharp 1:48.2; the swiftest North American mile this season.
Pocono's leading driver, George Napolitano Jr., was honored in the Pocono winner's circle early in the evening on Saturday, June 16, for earning career driving victory 9,000 on Monday night, making him only the 21st North American member of that exclusive club. Then George Napolitano went out and showed he was in a hurry to get to 10,000 on Saturday scoring eight times on the card.
Kimberlee and Sharen Hanover both became three-time winners in the preliminaries of the Bobby Weiss Series for pacing mares at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono Monday (April 23), as the track hosted two $15,000 divisions of the fourth and final Weiss preliminary.
Luck Be Withyou raced his 89th and final career start on Saturday night at Pocono, bringing an exceptional career to a close. The son of Western Ideal, usually handled by George Napolitano Jr. for trainer Chris Oakes and owners John Craig and Northfork Racing Stable, will now begin a new career as a stud at Maple Lane Farm, Grabil IN after earning arning nearly $1.5 million.
The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono has announced their annual awards for Horses of the Year. The horses will be honored in the Hanover Shoe Farms Winner’s Circle starting Saturday, November 11th and continuing through Saturday, November 18th.
The C.K.G. Billings Amateur driving Series made its annual fall stop at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Saturday night, and driver Joseph Lee added another win to the best season of his sulky career when he guided Soul Train to a 1:57.4 victory in 29-degree weather.
Veteran horseman Doug Hamilton was honored by Pocono and by the local horseman’s colony as he retired from training, with management and a huge portion of Pocono backstretch’s community gathering in the winner’s circle after the third race for the ceremony.
Matt Kakaley posted the 4000th win of his driving career on Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, guiding the maiden trotter Rose Run Tyrone to an open length victory to reach the milestone.
Imagine you’re the trainer of one of the favorites for the Little Brown Jug, the Triple Crown race held in your home town of Delaware OH, and you’ve got a colt who has a string of impressive stakes successes.
Brian Brown must feel pretty good right now.
Growing our sport means inspiring the youth of today to become the stars of tomorrow. Perhaps no other nonprofit makes a bigger impact in that arena than the Harness Horse Youth Foundation. Each year, the staff and volunteers travel from racetrack to racetrack hosting programs ranging from one to five days where kids who have demonstrated an interest in racing get to experience virtually every aspect of the sport. But the ripple effect is even more substantial because the media loves reporting on it—and this year, the PHHA-sponsored program at Pocono even made front page headlines. It's the kind of publicity that's simply priceless.
-----------------------PA Harness Week