INDIANA PA – The Pennsylvania Fair Harness racing circuit traveled to this westcentral Pennsylvania city for two days of harness racing on Thursday and Friday at the Indiana County Fairgrounds. Besides being known as the birthplace of actor Jimmy Stewart, Indiana is also known as the “Christmas Tree Capital of the World” because their trade organization was founded there, and many talented trotters and pacers built on solid seasonal records to help keep the prospects of the holidays warm for their connections.
No track records were rewritten at Indiana, either during Thursday freshman action nor Friday’s sophomore events, but one horse familiar with the process, the International Moni – Arrowstar colt Action Shot, came closest in his Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes “A” division with a 2:05.2 mile, just a tick behind the mark set ten years ago this week by Markup Hanover. Action Shot, who earlier equaled the all-age track record of Vivid Photo at Honesdale in 2:02 and also altered a line with a 2:04 mile in his last start at Meadville, has now won four straight for straight for trainer/driver Todd Schadel, also co-owner with his wife Christine and Rick and Regina Beinhauer.
Fastest pacing baby was the Stay Hungry – Sara Diamond miss Stay Happy, rebounding after a disqualification from the win for interference in her previous start, covering the Indiana half-miler in a snappy 2:02.4 for driver Mike Wilder, trainer Dan Altmeyer, and owner Ruth Altmeyer.
On Friday, several three-year-olds continued to add to their lofty credentials of recent weeks. The Explosive Matter trotting filly Heart Matters became the first horse to notch eight wins over the Pennsylvania twicearounds with a 2:05.1 mile for the same team behind Action Shot. This was the seventh win in a row for Heart Matters; also winning his seventh straight was the Always B Miki colt Buchannon Hanover, a 2:02.1 winner to raise his overall fair total to seven for Todd and Christine Schadel.
Another who now has seven 2022 fair wins after a 2:05.4 tally is the Betting Line filly Bettor Strait N Up, co-owned by driver Tony and trainer/wife Linda Schadel; atop her group’s pointstandings this year and a double 2021 honoree for points total and Championship win, Bettor Strait N Up is getting to a position where she could be the first-ever fair horse in the recordbooks to be a double champion at both two and three.
Unusually, the fastest mile of the entire Indiana stand was notched by a winner in a “B” division race for sophomore pacing colts, Toto Hanover, a son of A Rocknroll Dance who completed the mile in 2:02 for driver David Brickell and owner/trainer Mitchell York.
Todd Schadel again emerged as the leading driver and trainer of the meet; on the driving side Wayne Long came in second, while among trainers Dan Altmeyer, Steve Schoeffel, and Mitchell York tied for second spot.
The Erie County Fair in Wattsburg PA will be racing on Monday and Tuesday at noon as the tenth and final fair stop in an extraordinarily busy month within the state. After Wattsburg there will be five more PaFSS stops for horses to earn enough points to earn their way into their $25,000 Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes Championships, to be held Friday, October 7 at The Meadows.