by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway
HAMBURG, N.Y. --- "It was nice to get through the racing season without any (Covid-19) restrictions," said Buffalo Raceway Assistant General Manager Jon Cramer as the track completed the live meet on Saturday (July 16).
A switch from evening start times to afternoon racing resulted in pretty good results. "The handle was slightly down both on and off track for the year but the winter months played havoc," Cramer said.
|Driver Of The Meet Jim Morrill Jr.|
He continued by saying, "We are going to also look at our promotions this fall, on what worked and what didn't. I am sure one of the promotions that will return is the Kentucky Derby Party."
Jim Morrill Jr. collected his second consecutive driving title and fourth overall at Buffalo Raceway by scoring 91 victories in just 303 starts. He was also the leading purse earner with $867,305. Drew Monti was second in the rankings with 75 wins with Kevin Cummings third with 65 victories.
Shawn McDonough won his first ever training crown by sending out 54 winners on the season and also posted 33 driving victories. He was also tops in money collected with $425,218. Gerry Sarama was second in the trainer's standings with 33 while Jennifer Giuliani and Ryan Swift shared third place honors with 31 each.
While enjoying the 'Trainer Of The Meet' award, McDonough also celebrated his trainee Mugshots Bro who was named 'Trotter Of The Meet.'
The 10-year-old Mugshots Bro (Jailhouse Jesse-Photo Emmy) is co-owned by Herman Niedhammer and Herman Niedhammer Jr. Mugshots Bro collected six wins, a second and a third place finish in 10 starts on the season. He earned $48,845 and had a five-race wins streak with four of those coming from outside posts.
Stop Action was a model of consistency and determination throughout the season and claimed the 'Pacer Of The Meet' award.
|Trainer of the Meet Shawn McDonough|
Owned by Super Mile LLC and trained by Angelo Nappo, the 5-year-old gelded Stop Action (Somebeachsomewhere-The Show Returns, started the campaign in the $5,500 level but steadily worked his way up the ladder and into the Open competition.
In 18 starts, Stop Action finished in the money 16 times including eight victories and bankrolled $69,595, the most of any horse at the track. His seasonal best was 1:54.0 and was driven by Kevin Cummings through much of the year.
There were eight track records broken during the season including three all-age standards.
The trotters saw two all-age marks fall by the wayside as Je Suis Si Belle snapped the all-age filly time with a 1:56.1 which also was good enough to re-write the 3-year-old filly barrier. Barn Hall established a new record for the all-age and 4-year-old trotting horses with a 1:56.2.
Gotthegreenlight made a name for herself by placing her name in the record book with a 1:52.2 which eclipsed the all-age and 3-year-old filly pacing marks. Vivians Dream broke the 2-year-old filly record with a 1:54.4 mile tour and American Fling erased the 2-year-old gelding record with a 1:55.1.
Statistically, Buffalo Raceway's post time favorites won at a 48.26 percent clip.
For more information on Buffalo Raceway, go to www.buffaloraceway.com