“Hurrincane Hannah” Wins Billings Trot at Historic Track;
|USTA/Mark Hall photo|
|Kimberly Gilman-Daios accepted the trophy from Driving School Director Chip Hastings after she won the 2012 exhibition race.|
“I’m looking forward to getting back there,” Gilman-Daios said. “I love Goshen. That was like the best time of my life. It was a learning experience, definitely. I was in Ray Schnittker’s barn and he does a really good job with his horses. Some of the things that he does I was able to take back with me and use on my own.”
Friday’s eight-race card, which begins at 1 p.m., kicks off the Grand Circuit meet at Historic Track. There will be four days of racing at the track and Sunday’s festivities include Hall of Fame inductions at the adjacent Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame.
Steuben Magic Ride heads to his race Friday looking for his first win, but the pacer has posted two second-place finishes and two thirds in five career races. Four of his starts came last year, when Gilman-Daios drove the horse herself on the New York fair circuit.
“He’s still learning to race this year,” Gilman-Daios said. “I wanted to win with him last year in the worst way, but he wasn’t ready yet. He wasn’t a fighter. But this year he’s a tiger.”
Gilman-Daios got married last fall and gets help from husband Greg when he has time.
“He wasn’t into the horses before, but he married into it so he has no choice,” Gilman-Daios said, laughing. “He works full time for a company, but he’s been giving me a hand at the barn when he can.”
Gilman-Daios’ family has been involved in harness racing for generations. She lived in New Hampshire when she attended the Driving School, but has moved to Vernon, N.Y., where she has a four-horse stable. She owns three of the horses and also trains a horse for another 2012 Driving School graduate, Sophie Engerran.
“So far so good,” said Gilman-Daios, who worked for a utilities company prior to deciding to focus on training horses.
“Before I was at a retirement stage I wanted to have a stable and do this as a job. At the time (of the Driving School) it wasn’t the right time because I had a career. Now I’ve made the time to do it. I enjoy it, I really do.”
15-year-old Irvine Puts Exclamation Point
0n Youth Foundation celebrations
Goshen, NY. 06.05.16 - Fifteen-year-old alumnus Justin Irvine put an exclamation point on the Harness Horse Youth Foundation’s (HHYF) 40th Anniversary celebration Sunday, winning the Open Pace Matinee at Goshen Historic Track with Cruzing Hill by 25 lengths over a sloppy track in 2:01.2. In Irvine’s first charted drive, he pulled fromsecond with the Mark Ford-trainee as the horses headed to the three-quarter pole and drew off to easily defeat the opposition with a 30.3 final quarter. Cruzing Hill is owned by George and Rose Bonomo of Illinois.
Earlier, over 100 attendees celebrated HHYF with brunch at the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame. They witnessed a program that featured a cavalcade of guests, with Bob “Hollywood” Heyden serving as M.C. Chris Wittstruck received his Service to Youth Award from HHYF and he made a passionate plea for the industry to support HHYF’s efforts. The assembled also heard from Service to Youth winner and former HHYF President Callie Davies-Gooch, former scholarship recipient and equine vet Dr. Patty Hogan, alum and Little Brown Jug winning driver Montrell Teague, current President Marlys Pinske, and future camper Wyatt Beaver, who will be attending camp at Gaitway Farms this summer. The group then had time to tour the museum prior to the start of the matinee card at the Historic Track.
Celebrating 40 years of youth education and service to harness racing, the Harness Horse Youth Foundation is a charitable 501(c)3 organization dedicated to providing young people and their families educational opportunities with harness horses, in order to foster the next generation of participants and fans. The Foundation makes a difference in young people’s lives through interactive learning experiences with these versatile animals, scholarship programs, and creation and distribution of educational materials. For more information on opportunities through HHYF, or to support its mission, go to www.hhyf.org.