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Humboldt, IA -- The top ten 3-year-old trotters finished the 2020 Iowa season at the Humboldt County Fairgrounds in Iowa-Registered Championship races held on Sunday (Sep 27).   The HAY's Standardbred Dr. Ken Harris DVM Memorial Trot included the top 3-year-old colts of the Iowa fair circuit. Poker Play drew post position one, followed by First Gunner, Exhibition Day, SV Tymal's Image and Itsonlymoneyhoney in post position five. Iowa limits it's finals' fields to five so no horse starts from the second tier. Crowd favorite First Gunner, who raced on the pace as a 2-year-old, led the season with 14 wins in 18 starts and 2020 earnings of $36,096. He was the only competitor coming off a win.   First Gunner shot off the gate followed by Exhibition Day and Poker Play. In the point of the first turn, First Gunner made an uncharacteristic break followed by a break by Poker Play. Exhibition Day took the lead and led stablemate Itsonlymoneyhoney and SV Tymals Image to the quarter in 31.4. Driver Dan Roland and Itsonlymoneyhoney moved to the front and led at the half in 1:03.1 with SV Tymals Image moving up to second challenging on the outside. Itsonlymoneyhoney held strong passing the three-quarter pole in 1:33.3 with SV Tymals Image still parked for second. As they turned into the home stretch, only four lengths covered the field with Itsonlymoneyhoney having the slight advantage. The trotters powered home with Itsonlymoneyhoney holding off SV Tylmals Image in a 2:05 mile. First Gunner finished third, but was placed fifth due to the earlier break. Exhibition Day was fourth, placed third.   Itsonlymoneyhoney is trained by Dan Roland and owned by It's Only Money Stable of Grinnell, Iowa. The 3-year-old gelding was bred by Willis Borntrager. Itsonlymoneyhoney is by Banker Volo out of the Cash Hall mare Steuben Hey Jude.   The Pete and Freda Mouw Memorial Trot was Battle Queen's to lose. Gary Liles' 3-year-old filly dominated the 2020 Iowa fair circuit with the fastest mark (2:01), the highest earnings ($25,800) and the most wins (9 in 10 starts). Battle Queen also had the rail advantage, drawing post position one. CR Valentine drew the two, followed by stablemate Lucky Playmate, Sometimes You Dont, and Passion In Paris on the outside.   Battle Queen powered off the gate, with CR Valentine contesting until settling in the pocket as they passed the quarter in :31. Lucky Playmate and Passion In Paris followed in third and fourth with Sometimes You Dont trailing the field. Battle Queen passed the half in 1:03 with the field single file in pursuit. As they turned into the backstretch CR Valentine tipped out from second and Passion In Paris from fourth. The field passed the three-quarter pole two-by-two in 1:33.1. At the head of the stretch Passion In Paris fanned to the outside and Lucky Playmate moved to the passing lane. With Battle Queen and CR Valentine in the center, the four fillies battled head-to-head charging to the wire. Driver Chad Svendsen and Lucky Playmate had never left the rail, and his patience paid off when Lucky Playmate made a last second surge to take the race in 2:02.4.   Lucky Playmate and driver Chad Svendsen      --photo by Gretchen Roland Lucky Playmate is trained by Rick Huffman and owned by Rick & CD Huffman of Sigourney, Iowa and Larry Mather of Webster, Iowa. The 3-year-old champion was bred by Winbak Farm out of the Pine Chip mare Almond Chip. Lucky Playmate is by Lucky Chucky, who stood in New York the year she was conceived. Lucky Chucky has stood in New York, Pennsylvania and currently stands in Ohio. He's sired 228 starts with over $10.3 million in earnings.   Sunday's card concludes the 2020 Iowa racing season. Iowa racing will resume in May 2021.   by Gretchen Roland for the Iowa Harness Horsemen's Association

Humboldt, IA -- The top ten 3-year-old pacers faced fierce harness racing competition at the Humboldt County Fairgrounds for the Iowa-Registered Championship races held on Sunday (Sep 27).   Three-year-old championship races began with the John Nessa Memorial for pacing colts. From post position one-to-five the field included Slippin The Clutch, Cashncam, Always Hotspeed, Legal Liar and Yankee On The Move. Iowa limits it's finals' fields to five so no horse starts from the second tier. Pairing with leading driver Will Roland, Slippin The Clutch was the favorite leading the season in wins (12 in 14 starts) and 2020 earnings ($32,821). He also had the fastest fair mile in 1:57.2 at What Cheer at the end of August.   As he has throughout the season, Slippin the Clutch used his gate speed to capture the lead into turn one. The rest of the field quickly settled with Legal Liar dropping in second followed by Cashncam, Always Hotspeed and Yankee On The Move. The colts held their positions passing the quarter pole in 30.4 and parading by the grandstand the first time in 1:02.3 with just five lengths covering the field. Driver Adam Hauser tipped out Yankee On The Move at the half and gradually picked off contenders. Slippin The Clutch made it to the three-quarters in 1:32.4 with Yankee On The Move having taken over second. As they rounded the final turn, Slippin The Clutch switched gears and accelerated home taking the race in 2:01. Yankee On The Move was second and Legal Liar was third.   Slippin The Clutch is trained by Curtis Carey and owned by Jay Delong of Clinton, Wis, Rick & CD Huffman of Sigourney, Iowa and Jeff Carey of Columbus Junction, Iowa. He was raised by Alan and Randall Eden of Lone Tree, Iowa out of their Artsplace mare Sweet Otra. Slippin The Clutch is by the Iowa's Miilionaire Cam, sire of multiple Iowa 2- and 3-year-old champions.   The Terwilliger Family Memorial Pace featured the top 3-year-old Iowa Registered fillies. Shining Jewels drew post position one, followed by Ivy B Poison. It's Pacific Time, Jennie Ann and Supreme Dumpling. Rob Anderson's Jennie Ann had posted the fastest mile on the Iowa circuit in a 1:58.3 performance at West Liberty. It's Pacific Time led the field in wins (10) and 2020 earnings ($46,950).   Driver Chad Svendson and It's Pacific Time surged from the center of the field taking the early lead. Ivy B Poison filed in second with Jennie Ann charging on the outside to challenge It's Pacific Time up the backside. Jennie Ann captured the lead passing the quarter in 29.4 and the half in 1:00. With It's Pacific Time sitting in the pocket, Ivy B Poison made her move sweeping up to second when Jennie Ann hit the three-quarter pole at 1:29.1. At the top of the stretch Jennie Ann pulled ahead just enough for Svendsen to find racing room sneaking It's Pacific Time out in front of Ivy B Poison. With nothing but an open stretch between them and the finish line, Jennie Ann and It's Pacific Time grinded to the wire with It's Pacific Time taking the win in 1:59.4, the fastest pace of the Iowa Championships. Ivy B Poison held on for third.   It's Pacific Time and driver Chad Svendsen             --Gretchen Roland photo   It's Pacific Time won on her home track for owner John Hendricks and trainer Joel McDanel, both of Humboldt, IA. Raised by Hendricks out of the Cam's Card Shark mare Pacific Fling and from the first crop of the Minnesota sire It's That TIme, It's Pacific Time is dual eligible to Iowa and MInnesota.   Sunday's card concludes the 2020 Iowa racing season. Iowa racing will resume in May 2021.     by Gretchen Roland for the Iowa Harness Horsemen's Association

Iowa Sire Stakes harness racing action took place this weekend at Humboldt, Iowa. Saturday (7/18) featured Iowa-sired two-year-old, pacers and trotters. With nine races on the harness racing card, multiple first lifetime wins, as well as multiple driving wins, were featured on the afternoon. In the first division of the two-year-old filly pace, Portray An Image, with owner, trainer, driver Cory Larson holding the lines, left the gate and didn't look back. Cutting the mile in 31.1, 1:04.3, 1:35.2, the Western Trademark filly paced her way to the finish line in 2:06.1. Last quarter in 30.4, Portray An Image struck an image for the photographer as she stood in the winner's circle with her first lifetime win. The feature race on the card took place in race two, The Larry Coleman Memorial Two-Year-Old Filly Trot. Leased, trained and driven by Lorenza Gooch, Final Quote trotted her way out of the three-hole to take the lead in 31.3. As she rounded the track in 1:03.4. 1:35.0, Final Quote turned for the wire. Trotting home in 31.4, the Nf Quotable filly picked up her first lifetime win in 2:06.4, winning by over seven lengths. Not to be outdone with wire to wire wins, Duane Roland followed suit with his two-year-old pacing colt, Freddie Faves in race three. As the gate folded, Freddie Faves shot out for the lead in race three. Pacing in 30.3, 1:04.0, 1:34.0, Roland asked his colt for a little more, crossing the wire in 2:05.0, also a first lifetime win over the rest of the field. Two-year-old trotting colts took the track in race four. With the strategy, "if you're the best, make them catch you", driver Adam Hauser guided I'm Another Wilson out of the two-hole to the top. The chestnut Wilson Wyoming gelding set the fractions in 31.3, 1:02.2, 1:33.2 and trotted to a new lifetime mark of 2:05.4. Looking for her fourth win on the season, Curvyhipsnredlips drew post position two in the second division of two-year-old filly pacers. Driver Will Roland followed the previous race strategies and left the gate, looking to lead the pack. As the Millionaire Cam filly paced the half, cutting the mile in 31.0, 1:04.3, 1:35.4, she drove down the lane for the win in 2:05.2. Given the drive for trainer Mark Mintun, Adam Hauser was looking for his second driving win as he sat behind DP Radiant Striker. When the starter said go, Hauser had his hands full to bring the trotting colt back on gait, after breaking stride. As the colt settled into the race, Hauser made a move past the half to take command. Trotting a last quarter in 32.2, DP Radiant Striker cruised across the line for his first lifetime win in 2:08.0 in the second division of two-year-old trotters. With a driving double on his mind, Cory Larson and Western Waltz had to start from the five-hole in the second division of two-year-old pacers. Getting away fifth, Larson worked his way through the field to take over past the half. As Wester Waltz crossed the finish line in 2:03.3, the Western Trademark picked up his third win on the season and Larson drove to a driving double. With the non-winners divisions of two-year-old pacers and trotters rounding out the card, Adam Hauser drove pacing filly, Keepin Calvin B to victory in race eight and also picked up a win in race nine, with trotter, Swaggen to Court, capturing a total of four driving wins on the day. Three-year-old Iowa Sired horses took center stage on Sunday (7/19). The eight race card started the day with filly trotters. CR Valentine took the track with three consecutive wins, looking for her fourth in the opener. Driver Rob Anderson left with CR Valentine and handily took the win, cutting the mile in 33.0, 1:06.0, 1:36.2 and 2:06.1. Race two featured three-year-old colt pacers. Not handicapped by drawing the five-hole, Slippin The Clutch shot from behind the gate, with Will Roland in the bike. Setting the fractions in 30.1, 1:03.2 and 1:32.4, Slippin The Clutch was in full command as he crossed the finish line in 2:02.3 for a sixth win in a row. First Gunner was looking for another win in race three, the first division of three-year-old colt trotters. At the start, Royal Roland made a move to the front, in 32.4. Trotting to the half in 1:06.4, the three-quarters in 1:37.3, First Gunner was gunning for the wire. Returning victorious to the winner's circle, First Gunner trotted his mile in 2:07.3 for an amazing- seventh consecutive win. The first division of three-year-old pacing fillies took to the track in race four. Owner, trainer, driver Rob Anderson drove Jennie Ann to her fourth win on the season. Cutting the mile in 30.1, 1:01.0, 1:30.4, Jennie Ann put in a last quarter of 29.2. Winning in 2:00.1, the Lettherockbegin filly clocked the fastest mile on the day, giving Anderson a driving double. The second division of three-year-old colt trotters saw another gate to wire win in race five. Lucky La Boot, with owner, trainer, driver Gary Liles holding the lines, trotted a brisk mile to hold off challenger Wind Wizzard (Will Roland). With his second win on the 2020 season, Lucky La Boot trotted in 2:09.0 for a new lifetime mark. In race six, four fillies competed in the second division of three-year-old pacers. Glorynhonorforever (Royal Roland) left from the gate to take the lead. Black River Willow, with driver Jason Telfer, got away second, but was shuffled back to fourth as they past the three-quarters. Making ground on the leader, Black River Willow flew down the stretch, battling for the lead. Picking up a first lifetime win, Black River Willow paced her mile in 2:04.3, winning by a head. Races seven and eight featured three-year-old trotting and pacing non-winners. Driver Gary Liles and filly, Foxy Bright Star, crossed the line for the win in race seven, giving Liles his driving double. Will Roland pick up a driving double in the finale, when Almostamillionaire picked his first win of the season. Racing in Iowa resumes for a two- day card at Oskaloosa, Iowa on Sunday (7/26) and Monday (7/27). By Tara Spach Social Media Coordinator  

What Cheer, IA -- The 2020 harness racing season opened on Sunday (May 24) at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds in What Cheer, Iowa. Eighty-four horses competed in 16 overnight races. The grandstand was closed to spectators following Iowa's COVID-19 guidelines and participants on the backside practiced social distancing. The 2-year-olds in the first six races were all first time starters. The Dan and Jeri Roland stable dominated the 2-year-old trots taking all three races. Mneumonic captured the first win in 2:11.3 with Mike Morales in bike. A daughter of Dontyouforgetit and the Muscle Hill mare Southwind Celine, Mneumonic is owned by Dan and Jeri Roland. Rush to the Bank, a colt by Banker Volo, won the second 2-year-old trot in 2:11.2 for owners Jeri Roland and Vickie Rush. It's So Fluffy, a Banker Volo filly owned, trained and driven by Dan Roland, took the final division in 2:17.1. The fastest 2-year-old pace of the day went to Welltheraceison in 2:08.1. Driven by Eric Delong, the Well Said filly made strong debut for trainer Curtis Carey and owners Rick & CD Huffman, Jeff Carey and Jay Delong. The next division of 2-year-old pacers went to Zipper Flipper, a Roll With Joe colt trained by Rick Huffman and owned by Huffman and Larry Mather. Chad Svendson piloted Zipper Flipper in his 2:12 mile. Another Curtis Carey trainee, Messin With Melesa, took the final 2-year-old pace in 2:09. Driven by Nick Roland, the Time To Roll filly is owned by Rick Huffman. Three-year-old veterans and first time starters came out on the top of their divisions in both the pace and the trot. Minnesota bred filly Go Margeaux started her 3-year-old season strong with a win for the Justin Anfinson stable. Driven by Nick Roland, the Braggart filly clocked a 2:05.4 mile for owners Jeanne Marquis and Jay Delong. After a rocky 2-year-old season of never seeing the winner's circle, Lucky Banker cashed in a win with a 2:04.3 mile with Mark Mintun in the bike. The 3-year-old son of Banker Volo is owned by Mintun and Stephanie Gould. The final 3-year-old trot went to first time starter Lucky La Boot. An American Native gelding out of the Lucky Chucky mare Lucky Combination, Lucky La Boot is owned, trained and driven by Gary Liles. Three-year-old pacer Slippin The Clutch came back in top form after finishing last season with a 1:50.4 mile at Lexington. Trained by Curtis Carey, Will Roland drove the Millionaire Cam gelding to victory in 2:02. Slippin The Clutch is owned by Jay Delong, Rick & CD Huffman and Jeff Carey. The Duane Roland Stable took the next two divisions of the 3-year-old pace. Bizy's Beatle, a Sportsmaster gelding, paced a 2:05.2 mile for his second lifetime win. First time starter Somewherebeautiful, a daughter of Somebeachsomewhere, took the final division of the 3-year-old pace in 2:06 for owners Duane and Roger Roland. The meet concluded with one FFA Trot and three divisions of FFA pacers. Bordogna dominated in the FFA trot. After some early shuffling, driver Adam Hauser took the 4-year-old son of Trixton to the top where he separated from the field cruising home in 2:03. Bordogna is trained by Justin Anfinson and owned by Cathy Dessert and Ken Stauffer. After starting his racing career as a 2-year-old in Iowa with driver Will Roland five years ago, 7-year-old gelding Buzz Light reunited with Roland to best the top division of FFA pacers in 2:00.2. Buzz Light is trained by Nick Roland and owned by Cathy Dessert. Owned, trained and driven by Rob Anderson, Harry Fredrick took the second FFA pace in 2:02.1. The final race of the day clocked in at 2:03 for Officer Jim, a 4-year-old American Ideal gelding driven by Brady Jenson, trained by Brandon Jenson and owned by Stephanie O'Connell. Iowa harness racing action resumes Saturday, May 30 at the Humboldt County Fairgrounds. Post time is 12:30. From Gretchen L. Roland for the Iowa Harness Horse Association

IaHHA is pleased to announce opening day of harness racing in Iowa will be Sunday (5/24) at What Cheer.  While this will not be a full opening for spectators in the grandstands, live races will be broadcast on Facebook.  Program pages are now available on the Iowa Harness Racing website: We are living in unprecedented times.   The COVID-19 situation has changed our lives but not our love of racing. We are thankful to be able to start our racing season this weekend and hopeful that we can fully open soon. Please observe the state guidance under which we are allowed to race at this point. This was from Governor Reynolds May 13 proclamation – L. Race tracks: A speedway or race track, including a track conducting horse or dog races, may reopen or continue its operations provided that it does not permit any spectators to attend its events in person. We realize it is a gray area regarding who are spectators and who are participants. We have been advised by our lobbyist that we can allow people to park their cars along the track to watch the races. Please exercise good judgement regarding social distancing and interaction with others at the races.  Racetracks in other states have much greater restrictions. We are concerned that pictures and videos from the races will be posted on Facebook and other social media of people interacting in ways that are not following the Governor’s proclamation.   This could cause subsequent races to be cancelled, and no one wants that. Regardless of your personal views on the virus, it is everyone’s responsibility to adhere to the current guidelines. There are some changes in the schedule that we are aware of at this point in time. • The overnight races at Eldon scheduled for June 17 & 18 are cancelled. The aged races are rescheduled for August 22 & 23 at What Cheer. • The race program at Allison on June 27 has been moved in its entirety to What Cheer. • The races at Bloomfield and Monticello are cancelled. Additions or changes to other locations or dates may occur. We will update our schedule on and publish updates to our Facebook page as we become aware of changes. Thank you for your cooperation.  Let me know if you have questions or comments. Royal Roland President, Iowa Harness Horseman’s Association

What Cheer, IA -- Iowa's best 2-year-old filly talent completed in two championship races that finished the 2019 harness racing season at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds on Monday (September 23).  The five best freshman trotters went to the gate in the Katherine Carey Memorial 2-year-old Iowa-Registered Filly Trot Championship, with three of the five hailing from the Rick Huffman Stable. Britches And Booty drew the rail, followed by Battle Queen, CR Valentine, Sometimes You Dont, and Lucky Playmate on the outside in post position five.  With 11 wins in 12 starts (and one second to Lucky Playmate), it was Battle Queen's race to lose. Owned, trained and driven by Gary Liles, the dominant daughter of Yadi holds the fastest 2-year-old filly trotting mile in Iowa in 2019 - 2:03.4 at Humboldt on August 24.  The Huffman Stable trio followed in wins with CR Valentine (Amigo Ranger-JL Jan) at four, Lucky Playmate (Lucky Chucky - Almond Chip) at three and Britches And Booty (Manofmanymissions-Mouvelle) at one.  Battle Queen powered to the front to take the lead with the Huffman Stables Britches And Booty, CR Valentine and Lucky Playmate filing in second, third and fourth. The field reached the quarter in 32.1, a length separating each. Battle Queen continued to lead at the half in 1:04.3, and the three-quarters in 1:33.2.  Battle Queen cruised out of the final turn into the stretch where Chad Svenson tipped out Lucky Playmate who charged down the stretch reaching Battle Queen at the wire for a photo finish. Though a valiant effort by Lucky Playmate, Battle Queen reigned victorious taking the trot in 2:05.3 by a nose.  In the Judy Liles Memorial 2-year-old Iowa-Registered Filly Pace Championship, the five top Iowa freshman pacing fillies took to the gait with the inside three separated by 2 points in the overall 2019 standings. With 10 points to the winner, the outcome of this race would determine the 2019 2-year-old Pacing Filly Champion.  Rob Anderson's Jennie Ann (Lettherockbegin-TJ Sizzle N Sage) had the rail (67 points), followed by Ivy B Poison (Sneaky B Skipalong-AC Alma) in the two (68 points) and Its Pactific Time (It's That Time-Pacific Fling) in the three (66 points). Shining Jewels (Real Desire-Southwind Jewel) and Lucy In The Sky (Hot Pans-Lawless Lucy) rounded out the field.  Jennie Ann and Its Pacific Time battled off the gate into the backstretch when Chad Svenson and Its Pacific Time cleared to take the lead. She passed the quarter in 29.2 followed by Jennie Ann and Ivy B Poison.  Passing the half in 1:01.1, Svenson kept Its Pacific Time focused on the top while Ivy B Poison pulled to challenge the leaders. Ivy B Poison gained ground until matching Its Pacific Time as the pair passed the three-quarters in 1:30.3.  Its Pacific Time pulled ahead in the final turn and sailed home in a 2:01 wire-to-wire performance, the fastest 2-year-old filly pacing mile of 2019.  Its Pacific Time was raised and bred by owner John Hendricks. From the first crop of the Minnesota sire It's That Time, Its Pacific Time is out of the Cam's Card Shark mare Pacific Fling. The filly finished the season with eight wins in 13 starts and the 2019 2-year-old pacing filly title for trainer Joel McDanel.  From Gretchen L. Roland for the Iowa Harness Horse Association  

The morning may have started with rain, but the sun broke through as Iowa-Registered two-year-old harness racing pacers and trotters took to the track at Humboldt, Iowa on Saturday (9/14), all looking to solidify their chance to reach the Championships. Two divisions of two-year-old pacing colts/geldings featured points leader Slippin The Clutch in race one. Driven by Will Roland, the Millionaire Cam colt clenched his spot on top of the leader standings.  In the second division, it was Always Hot Speed.  Taking charge past the half, the Real Desire colt, driven by Chad Svendson, paced his last quarter in 29.4, winning his division in 2:04. Two-year-old trotting colts/geldings also competed in two divisions.  Muscles-N-Tuff (Adam Hauser) took a new lifetime mark in 2:07.3, to win the first division.  Prince Banker, driven by Mark Mintun, stalked the field in race six.  Pulling at the top of the stretch, the Banker Volo colt opened up, winning by seven lengths. Pacing fillies featured points leaders Ivy B Poison and Jennie Ann.  In race three, Mark Mintun got a driving double with Ivy B Poison, also gaining a new lifetime mark of 2:03.  While Jennie Ann finished second, she was placed first, keeping the Lettherockbegin filly in the top of the points standings. One division of trotting fillies belonged to Battle Queen.  With a wire to wire win in 2:07.4, the points leader, driven by driver/trainer/owner Gary Liles, confirmed her spot in the Championship. In the remaining non-winners races, driver Will Roland picked up three wins.  Driving  Yankee On The Move, Smooth Buster and getting a first lifetime win with Abilene, Roland scores a driving quadruple. Racing continues Sunday (9/15) at Humboldt, as three-year-old pacers and trotters also look to add to their point standings.  Post time is 12:30pm CDT. By Tara Spach, for the IaHHA

SIOUX CENTER—This summer, a longtime part of Sioux Center will cease to be: the Sioux Speedway racetrack at the Sioux County Fairgrounds. Horses and stock cars have rocketed around the half-mile track for decades, but the track closed after the public approved a bond in February that allowed the city of Sioux Center and the Sioux Center Community School District to utilize the land on which the track sits to construct a new high school building. The racetrack has been a part of Sioux Center since the 1970s, but before it hosted horses and stock cars, it was home to go-karts. Go-kart start Around 1973 the Sioux Center Jaycees built a track for go-karts on the site, according to Al Sandbulte, president of the Sioux Trotting Association. That didn’t last long, he said, noting it stopped about two years after it began. A group of area horse harness racers gathered to develop the site by constructing a legitimate track for harness racing. In 1974, the racing group began talking with the Northwest Iowa Vocational School in Sheldon to help build the track, which was first known simply as the “Sioux Center Race Track.” Sometime in 1977, a meeting was held to formally organize a managing group for the racetrack upon construction. This group was the Sioux Trotting Association. They drew up plans to construct a half-mile oval racetrack with an estimated initial construction cost of $15,000, though it ended up costing more than that. While it was up to the racing group to build the track itself, the Sioux County Fair Board oversaw the building of the grandstands. Stock car influence Nate Regnerus, who did some marketing work for stock car racing at the track, said stock car racing took place at the track during the 1970s as well, featuring such racers as Leon Mulder, Al Schouten and Doc Zeutenhorst. But it wasn’t until July 1998 that stock car racing really took off at the racetrack thanks to the work of Mulder, and with it came a new name for the track: the Sioux Speedway.   Modified cars line up in front of a packed crowd for a race at the Sioux Speedway in 1999. Outdoor lighting and guard rails were added at that time as well. The changes were necessary steps to make things safer than they had been. As Regnerus recalled, the July 1998 race packed the grandstands and people sat or stood out in the grass to watch. “People came from quite a distance to compete,” he said. “The main event winner in the modified division was from Arkansas.” Through the years, more than 1,000 car racers from 18 states (plus one Canadian and one Australian) came to the racetrack. The last car race took place during the 2018 Sioux County Youth Fair, which was won by Sioux Falls racer Gregg Bakker. Drainage problems Water drainage problems were a persistent challenge, according to Sandbulte, since the clay ground found at the site hangs onto the water. During winter and spring, then, the track was prone to developing frost boils. Tile had been installed when the track was built. Back then, however, tiles were done in individual segments laid out in a line to pipe the water away, but the segments would shift and move with freeze and thaw cycles and occasionally a segment would be moved sufficiently to hinder the water flow. “I’ve seen it where the infield is practically covered in water,” Sandbulte said. “You got a banked curve, and the water’s like 6, 7 feet up the curve. We put a tractor with a lagoon pump on the side of it just to pump it away and get something done.” The tile system was improved in 2005, and it was completely replaced six years ago. Because the clay itself held onto the water so badly, that meant harness racers had to be careful when taking their horses onto the track. “If we’re on a bad track training hard with our horses, you could ruin their legs if it’s not right,” Sandbulte said. “So, we had to really take care and make sure it drained.” The water would usually clear up in time for the races scheduled for midsummer. The Sioux Trotting Association would have two weekends for racing with as many as 180-200 horses, according to Sandbulte. ‘Fastest track’ Once the track dried, Sandbulte said, “that track was the fastest horse track in the state of Iowa. We could get that track to zing. And everybody who came to race on that track would say the same thing.” Once the weather allowed it, he said the track would get really busy with training work. Regnerus echoed the sentiment. “There’s no other track around that’s as big as this one, so you could get some good speed,” he said. Sandbulte said the track has been underrated, given what it brings back to the community. “There is some earning power,” he said, of racing. “It’s just overlooked a little bit. Any time you can bring money back into the community is good.” As for Regnerus, he said it’s good the property will be put to good use and that students will benefit from the land in a different way with the upcoming high school building .T The Sioux Speedway has closed following plans to utilize the land for the construction of a new public high school building. That makes 2018 the last year races were held on this track, where horses and cars alike competed. By Eric Sandbulte Reprinted with permission of the Sioux Center News  

ELDON — For some, county fairs are about the rides, the food, the time with friends and family. It’s easy to forget there’s another side, as vendors depend on fairgoers to boost their business. Erin Eister was getting a taste of that side of the fair Thursday with her mom, Ashley. She was helping out with the Scentsy booth. Erin recommended the blueberry cheesecake scented items. That’s her favorite. The Cardinal Elementary student said being under the grandstand wasn’t all bad, though she’d rather be able to steal a bit of time with the rides. “I don’t have a favorite ride,” she said. There’s a challenger for her attention this year: the Pirates of the Columbian Caribbean aerial show. Ashley said Erin enjoyed watching that show on Thursday, and more shows are scheduled through the fair’s end Sunday. The call to post echoed through the grandstand as another race got ready to run. The barns were still mostly empty, though some families prepared their goats for the 1 p.m. show. The items in the vendor stalls may be different, but the scene would have been recognizable to visitors a century ago There was one big benefit for both vendors and the crowd watching the harness racing that was unusual. Sunny skies in mid-June usually bring warm, even hot temperatures. But at midday Thursday it hadn’t quite reached 70 degrees and a steady breeze kept people cool. “It’s probably going to be a pretty nice week,” Ashley said. Kriss Fraze agreed. She wore a long-sleeved shirt and a jacket, and said she was perfectly comfortable doing so. “I was laughing because as I walked outside it was to warm up a little,” she said. “You couldn’t have better weather. Fraze has a bath fitting booth and said fairs are actually a pretty good place to get customers. She’s out of Des Moines, and was relieved to hear the river is heading back down in Wapello County. She saw the sandbags that are still in downtown Eldon, and was worried about the community. While rain is possible Friday night and Saturday, the totals from any rain shouldn’t be more than what you’d expect at this time of year. No, Fraze said, you really couldn’t ask for a better forecast for the fair. By Matt Milner Reprinted with permission of The Ottumwa Courier

Bedford, Iowa — Heavy Handed Hanna, the reigning Iowa harness racing champion, captured the 3-year-old pace on Saturday (June 8) at the Bedford Fair. After a recall, Heavy Handed Hanna got the perfect pocket trip behind My Money Honey. Driver Will Roland waited patiently until after the three-quarter pole to pull, driving her to victory in 2:06. Will Roland teamed up with trainer, Curtis Carey, for a total of four wins on today’s card, with 2-year-old pacer, Burl Da Earl and 2-year-old trotter, Callthebanker, each taking their first win. Open pacer, Frisky Pedro, found his way to the winner’s circle, after finishing third last week at Humboldt. Iowa Harness racing resumes on Wednesday (June 12) for two days at Eldon. Post time is 6 p.m. on Wednesday and 12:30 p.m. on Thursday. by Tara Spach, for the Iowa Harness Horsemen's Association

Trenton, NJ --- Most people try to pick up some extra money in December in order to do holiday shopping. Jason Telfer had no idea it would lead to the start of a new career, harness racing. The 32-year-old Iowan had been around horses most of his life but never had an overwhelming urge to get in the sport. But at the end of last year, he had left his meat packing job and hooked up with the father-son tandem of Paul and Gary Liles. Six months later he began driving at fairs and, shortly after that, he notched his first two driving wins. He is now looking to make a go of it in the sulky. “I didn’t really think this was going to happen,” Telfer said. “It’s been in the family, but I didn’t figure it would be me doing it. I like to go watch and help out but I never figured I’d be behind a horse, racing.” Asked what gave him the impetus, Jason said, “I really don’t know. Some extra side work, some extra money I needed, so I got a job with Gary last December. That was the main reason.” Telfer was born in Ottumwa, Iowa, made famous in the TV show M*A*S*H as Radar O’Reilly’s hometown. Unlike Radar, he grew up in Eldon before moving to his current residence of Selma at age 13. Jason’s parents grew up in Humboldt, Iowa, where his great-grandfather used to race. “It’s in my mom and dad’s blood, but they quit doing it,” Telfer said. He became re-introduced to it when he began dating his girlfriend, Heidi Saner, 14 years ago. Heidi’s dad, John, was racing in Illinois, but moved to Selma after Heidi and Jason began dating. “He started racing over here for Paul Liles; so I just went out to the track to watch and I really enjoyed it,” Telfer said. “I was all around it growing up through my school years, I helped clean stalls and that kind of stuff, but never anything more than that.” It all changed in December when he began helping the Liles family. After getting more involved and jogging horses, Jason got the urge to drive one. He said his first time in the bike was not too excruciating after his jogging experiences. “I really enjoyed it,” he said. “It’s something different that I enjoyed. The first time I was jogging I was pretty scared because I was stuck in between horses but after that, the racing is nothing different than the jogging. I was used to it after the first week or so.” His first actual race came in June at the Wapello County Regional Fair in Eldon and was, “pretty good, I felt pretty relaxed out there.” He raced seven more times before getting his first win on July 5 with Hasty I D Claire at the Lee County Fair in Donnellson. It was a three-horse race in which Telfer was second through the first two trips around the track. There was a catch, however. “That track is short down there and you have to go three laps on that track to get a mile,” he said. “The leader thought we were done. He pulled up on the second lap and I passed him. I got a little break there.” He almost got a bad break at the end, but held on to win. “It started raining a little bit,” he said. “I didn’t have gloves on so I couldn’t hold on very much longer. She actually broke right at the wire. So I kept holding on and my hands were slipping. It just slipped right out of my hands pretty much as we came across.” The excitement of the loose reins sort of nullified the elation of winning; but only for a moment. “I was worried hanging on but I enjoyed the win afterward,” he said. “Pictures with my family, my girlfriend and father-in-law (John Saner) that got me started.” Two days later Jason won again at the Keokuk County Fair in What Cheer, when he drove Paul Liles' 2-year-old pacing filly The Real Prize to victory. “That one was a lot easier,” he said. “The horse turned out to be a real prize.” Telfer has not won since, but has hit the board a number of times. “Me and my father-in-law have two horses,” he said. “I got a colt (Perfect Popper) that we lease from a guy. I drove him 12 times and got six seconds. I just can’t win with him, only seconds.” Jason will continue to work for the Liles family and has a nice schedule through August. He is at Humboldt this weekend and will race in the Cyrus Stakes the following Saturday. “We have six more races every weekend,” he said. Telfer is already looking forward to next year. He has some horses with his parents and is getting a few with John Saner, who he refers to as his father-in-law considering how long he and Heidi have dated. “I’m hoping to get out on my own and train and drive on my own,” he said. “I feel pretty good about where I am right now. I feel really good. And I’ll be getting my own horses for next year and try to go against all the big wigs.” by Rich Fisher, USTA Web Newsroom Senior Correspondent

OSKALOOSA — For more than 150 years, county fairs have showcased harness racing, and this year at the Southern Iowa Fair, two days of racing took place showcasing how popular the sport is in the region. Dan Roland, of Grinnell, said he has been participating in harness races since he was a teenager. “I started when I was about 13 [years old] helping my cousin. I used to spend my summers helping him,” Roland said. Roland’s wife, Jeri, said she started helping around the time they were married in 1996. “The fall of ‘96 we brought our first horse,” Jeri Roland said. “We bought an acreage in February with the thought of getting horses. That fall we bought our first mare.” Dan Roland said he enjoys racing because it reminds him of his younger days of competing in sports. “I was in sports and competed in things when I was younger. This was a way for me to keep competing as I got older,” Dan Roland said. “I drive them all myself, and it’s something our family can do together. My son has started learning and helping more.” In March, the Roland’s suffered a devastating fire, losing their barn and several horses. “We had a barn fire in March, and lost nine horses and two of them were mares getting ready to have babies any day,” Dan Roland said. “We still had 15 more horses, so we didn’t run out of horses.” Jeri Roland said the couple had three two-year-old horses that were being penned by a friend in Illinois at the time of the fire. “We still had those to raise,” Jeri said. “We had mares and yearlings and babies and the whole works.” After the fire, the Roland family made the decision to keep racing. “We just made a decision—do you sell all of them and get out or keep going? It’s what we do, this is our summer,” Jeri Roland said. The Roland’s have been competing for the season since May despite the setback. “We are about halfway through the summer. A-Train and Scramble Camp have been racing for the season since about the middle of June,” Jeri Roland said. Race results from Sunday and Monday for the Harness Races at the Southern Iowa Fair. Sunday race results: Race 1—My Whirly Girl (Gary Liles) Race 2—Marced For Terror (Adam Hauser) Race 3—Cyclone Maximus (Dan Roland) Race 4—Alight Guy (Will Roland) Race 5—Broadway Sissy (Robbie Anderson) Race 6—Juxta Cowgirl (Rick Huffman) Race 7—Setyourheartonme (Adam Hauser) Race 8—Elusive Image (Steve Huffman Jr.) Race 9—Swingin Swan (Will Roland) Race 10—Hot A Rena (Duane Roland) Race 11—Meltdownshymntohm (Cary Sturtz) Race 12—Awaygoesthecrown (Rick Huffman) Race 13—Tegansmile (Gary Liles)   Monday race results: Race 1—I'm On A Terror (Adam Hauser) Race 2—Ima Juggernaut (Mark Mintun) Race 3— Minnie Vinnie (Nick Roland) Race 4—Scramble Camp (Dan Roland) Race 5—Lippy Doo (Nick Roland) Race 6—Princess Legacy (Adam Hauser) Race 7—Tax Deadline (Curtis Carey) Race 8— Hotrod Richard (Joel McDanel) Race 9—Seelster Again (Elvin Zimmerman) Race 10—Lil Handsom (Nick Roland) Race 11—Lo All America (Joel McDanel) Race 12—Red N Hotallover (Cory Larson) Race 13—Massive Reactor (Gary Liles) By  Megan Showers Reprinted with permission of the Oskaloosa Herald

COLUMBUS, OH. - Harness racing driver Lemoyne 'Moonie' Svendsen reached the coveted 3,000 wins plateau at Running Aces on Sunday night.   The 55-year-old Minnesota native (born in Albert Lea) drove his first winner at an Iowa county fair at age 16 in 1975 and has won races each of the 39 years since then. The likeable green and yellow-clad reinsman is also approaching the coveted $10 million earnings mark with horses he has steered in his career.   Svendsen's best year was 2011 when he guided 266 winners and just lost the dash title at Cal Expo (to Luke Plano) in the waning weeks of the meet. Lemoyne has been a mainstay in California harness racing circles for the past 15 years and has been making his summer home at Running Aces for the past five years.   He also won 206 races in 2009 and over 100 times in ten other seasons. Earlier in his career Svendsen won dash titles at both Quad City Downs and Thunder Ridge.   The milestone triumph came with Meritage Hanover, fittingly owned and trained by fellow native Minnesotan Mark Anderson, for whom Svendsen has driven regularly over the past couple years.   An adept passing lane move allowed Svendsen to gain a thrilling half-length 1:54.3 victory over Gencor's Z Tam (Jason Ryan) and Nancy's Skyscape (Gerry Longo) in a bottom claiming class event. Off at 7-1 odds, Meritage Hanover rewarded $2 backers with a $16.40 win mutuel.   The elated newest member of the 3,000 Wins Club was joined in the winner's circle by his immediate family--wife Jodi, son Sonny and daughter Kaitlyn.   "My dad got me started in this business as a kid and its all I've ever done," chuckled Svendsen after the race. "I'll never forget the thrill that my first win with a horse called Miss Lasko forty years ago gave me. For that matter, this one was pretty darned thrilling, too. I must say every win between those two has been exciting as well. Winning never gets old!"   Gregg Keidel        

American In Paris has taken the Meadowlands by storm. A 4-year-old female pacer, American In Paris is 6-for-6 this season, with all her victories coming at the Big M. Her two most recent triumphs were in the preliminary rounds of the Artistic Vision Series, which concludes Saturday with a $55,800 final. American In Paris will start the final from post two with driver Jim Morrill Jr. at the lines for trainer/co-owner Ron Burke. Art Ideal, another Burke mare, leaves from post seven in the seven-horse field. She finished second in both her preliminary legs. Saturday's card also features the $63,000 Whata Baron Series final for male pacers. Captive Audience, who is unbeaten in three races this year, drew post three for trainer Corey Johnson. Wake Up Peter, who also won both his preliminary rounds, starts from post seven for trainer Larry Remmen. American In Paris won five of six races as a 2-year-old, then won five of 16 last season at age 3. She was winless in her final six starts last season, but turned the corner this year with the addition of Lasix. She won the second round of the Artistic Vision Series in a career-best 1:50. "She had a few issues last year," said co-owner Mark Weaver. "This year, I think the key is we added Lasix; maybe we should have had her on it sooner. "Earlier this year, she almost raced like a thoroughbred, with two or three weeks between starts. It's hard to be in top condition when you do that, so I thought we still hadn't seen the best of her. She's pretty good. I'm not saying she could beat the top horses, but I'm not saying she couldn't." American In Paris is a daughter of stallion American Ideal out of the mare Sendingforth. She was purchased originally for $4,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale by Iowa's Nolan Van Otterloo. She finished second in her first start and then won twice before being purchased by Burke, Weaver and Mike Bruscemi. "We've bought horses from (the Van Otterloos) before and it's been a good connection for us," Weaver said. "They have a pretty good knack at buying some underpriced horses and usually at least one of them hits." Although Weaver thinks American In Paris might be able to compete against the division's best, she probably will have few chances this year. "She's not staked, but she's only (age) 4, so that might not be a bad thing," Weaver said. "We usually don't stake the 4-year-olds too heavily. We'll probably pick our spots; there's enough money to be made, hopefully, in some of the invitationals and opens. "Depending how she does, we could shut her down a little early and may stake her up for her 5-year-old year." As for the immediate challenge of fending off six rivals in the Artistic Vision final, Weaver likes American In Paris' chances. Other contenders include Josh Parker's JK Letitgo, who has won seven of nine races this year, and Chris Ryder's Road Bet, who won a preliminary leg in the series. "She's in a good spot," Weaver said about American In Paris. "There are some pretty nice horses in there, but the way she's been racing, I think she'll be pretty tough to beat." by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications  

Looking for that special gift for that certain someone who says they having everything and are into harness racing? Then look no further than getting them the Midwest Harness Racing Board Game. And if you place your order now through the month of November and use the code word, Harnesslink, you will get $5.00 of the cost of shipping! The Midwest Harness Racing Board Game has been called a combination of Monopoly and Life evolved around the sport of harness racing. Developed by Samuel Borntreger, an Amish sawmill worker in Edgar, Wisconsin, Midwest Harness Racing Board Game has been loved by everyone who has played the game. “The first game we ever assembled,” said Samuel, “I gave to my brother-in-law Owen in Iowa. He had helped me with the concept for the game and the rules so I wanted him to have the first game. That was just a year ago and he called me last week to say that the family and his children’s friends had played the game so much that the board was wearing out. The kids played it every chance they got and the pieces were also wearing out.” Overall the game is fun, pure and simple. It does take time. This reporter played three rounds and it took over two hours. But once you have learned the rules it is the best harness racing board game this reporter has ever played. It’s simple grass roots of harness racing and it goes fast. You buy and lease horses and race them, pay bills, buy broodmares and stallion shares. After each go around the board you get to race in the Grand Circuit Stakes for big money. Sell yearlings or train them to race. All the aspects of the sport are in the game. The cost of the game is $49.95 and that includes shipping. But this game is very intense and the action much faster. To order the game you must go to And don’t forget to mention Harnesslink and get $5.00 off the cost of shipping! Remember, it’s the perfect gift for the harness guy or gal that has everything! By Steve Wolf for

It’s been an extraordinary summer for the De Long family and it isn’t over yet.  They have three of their horses in Super Night championships Saturday, energizing the whole Wisconsin based clan of horsemen. John De Long drove Let’s Go Higher to an impressive 1:50.4 clocking when the mare was eight lengths the best in her Lorna Propes elimination, propelling her to the 5-2 second choice behind Mystical Victress (programmed 9-5) in that $130,000 Championship. The 24-year-old De Long was second with both Party Hangover Two and Kiwi Party in their Orange and Blue Filly elims, moving each of his father Jessie De Long trained freshmen into that $200,000 Final. “John and I were so proud to have a Super Night winner last year (Party Hangover). It was a dream that came true,” said Jesse. “Now to have three of our horses in finals this year has the whole family pretty excited.” Let’s Go Higher spend most of the year out east under the care of trainer Heidi Rohn, posting 7 wins and over $66,000 in earnings, before coming back to the Clinton, Wisconsin Farm for a shot at a Super Night stake. “Heidi and her people did a phenomenal job with Let’s Go Higher,” said Jesse. “The mare is on fire right now. She came back to us just super-sharp. “We had a heck of a (super night elimination) weekend and John drove really well. He was bringing everybody’s horses’ home.” The proud papa was right-on with that statement. Besides the De Long three finalists John brought home six other horses (Monopoly Man, Cole Heat, Uncle Smoothie, Schmatie, Fox Valley Van and I Bizel The Shizel) into Super Night championships with either a second or a third place finish. During the spring Jesse wasn’t sure which of his yearling filly purchases, Party Hangover Two or Kiwi Party, would be bound for the Illinois fair circuit and which would compete on the Chicagoland tracks. “We bought Party Hangover Two privately and we bought Kiwi Party at a sale,” continued Jesse. “Kiwi trained better all spring. At that time Party Hangover Two was a little behind her and we had a decision to make. It was a toss-up as to what to do. One filly was going to race on the Chicago circuit and the other on the fair circuit. It was a tough decision and it turned out really well for us. “My son John took his time with Party Hangover Two and the filly has gotten just better and better. “My son Austin did a great job with Kiwi Party on the fair circuit. She won a number of races including the County Fair championship at Springfield and she showed last weekend she’s good enough to race in the Orange and Blue championship. “I have four boys and all have had a great summer. “My youngest Eric goes to Iowa and he just had the 2-year-old champion there which is awfully good for a 17-year-old. My son Ben (19) pretty much campaigned our horses up in the Minnesota fairs and had three of his horses went on to win championships on closing night at Running Acres. “Austin (23), who also owns a part of Kiwi Party, takes care of all three our horses who are racing in Super Night championships and of course, John is driving just great. He went up to Minnesota and drove the winner in four championships there and has done a terrific job with our Chicago horses. “I’m proud of them all.” A “Super” ending would put an exclamation point on this memorable summer for the De Long family. By Mike Paradise The Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association

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