Usually securing drivers for Monticello Raceway’s Passover Pace has never posed any problems. But this year things are different. Although the’ Race for the Matzos’ was originally advertised to be raced on March 28 it will now be presented on Monday afternoon, April 1, the next to last day of the Passover holiday.
Bobby Krivelin took advantage of racing luck and a slow first half to win the second leg of the North American Amateur Drivers Trotting Series with Mandinga in a time of 2:04.3 at Monticello Raceway on Thursday afternoon March 14th.
When the starting judge released the fifth race field for the NAADA Trot a collective groan was heard on the tracks apron when the 1-2 betting favorite, Sensational Prayer, went off stride before the start. But driver Alan Schwartz did a masterful job getting his trotter back on gait but the stalled start cost the horse the race.
Who’ll win Monticello Raceway’s ‘Race for the Matzos’ on Thursday afternoon, March 28? Also known as the Passover Pace, the event for drivers of Jewish heritage, will be the third leg of the tracks Heritage Drivers Series-2013 and comes on the heels of the St. Paddy Pace which was presented on March 13,
The Passover Pace race date varies annually depending on when the Passover Holiday begins. This year the Holiday starts at sundown on March 25 and continues for eight days, many of which are holy days.
Arguably it wasn’t the best of times for Jimmy Marohn, Jr. but winning Monticello Raceway’s 13th annual St. Paddy Pace on March 13th for the third time in the last five years was undoubtedly pleasurable.
“Hey, it’s always fun to win a race and winning is something I never get tired of,” Marohn said unequivocally after his victory. “I’ve certainly had bigger wins but this one was especially fun because we had some good guys in the race.”
First it was “Irish” Joe Hanney who consented to drive in Monticello Raceway’s 13th annual St. Paddy Pace. Now Anthony Haughan, another full-blooded native Irishman, will join his friend and fellow countryman on Wednesday, March 13th and participate in the race exclusively for drivers of Irish descent.
“We’ve always had plenty of Irish-Americans, or at least many drivers with some degree of Irish in their heritage in our St. Paddy Pace, but this year we will have, not just one, but two real ‘Irishman’ participating,” noted Eric Warner, the tracks director of racing.
Quietly and without much fanfare, on March 1 Jimmy Marohn, Jr. reined the 2000th winner of his career. It came behind Edward Hall’s trotter, JN Sydney, when the 5-year-old Mr. Lavec mare, trained by Danny Gill, toured the Monticello Raceway oval in a time of 2:02.2 to finish one length ahead of Sin To Win (Austin Siegelman).
Last season Marohn’s 271 wins at the Mighty M topped all other reinsmen and Gill’s 118 training victories won him leading trainer honors.
It’s easy to see how comfortable Bruce Aldrich, Jr. is at Monticello Raceway. After winning five previous driving titles here since the 2001 season on the wet and snowy card of Thursday, March 7th he won five races and now has sprinted away from last year’s champion, Jimmy Marohn, Jr. and leads him by nine driving victories,63-54.
When Monticello Raceway presents its 13th annual St. Paddy Pace for drivers of Irish heritage for the first time since the its inception the race will have a sponsor.
Peter Grandich, a sportsman and horse owner whose Trinity Financial Sports and Entertainment Management Company ,www.trinityfsem.com provides insurance and estate planning services to professional athletes. He began his Grandich Letter in 1984 and now several million words later he has authored two books on topics related to finance, faith and the economy.
When Monticello Raceway presents its 13th annual St. Paddy Pace on Wednesday March 13th they’ll have an honest- to- goodness Irishman in the race in the presence of Dublin native ‘Irish’ Joe Hanney who’ll headline the event.
Hanney, 30, came to North America in 2007 where he could pursue his harness racing career .