Press Room

After the calmest of early winter seasons in the southern Catskill Mountains a heavy snowstorm on Wednesday, December 26 ,which carried over to the following day, played havoc on the racing program at Monticello Raceway on Thursday.

After again running another successful awards banquet in late November the Monticello-Goshen Chapter of U.S. Harness Writers donated $3000 to Historic Track at their monthly Board Meeting on December 19. The presentation of the check was made to Bernie White, President of Historic Track‘s Board of Directors by John Manzi, the chapter’s banquet chairman..


That donation will to be matched and the National Historic Landmark will actually end-up with $6,000.


By definition halfpipe is a structure used in gravity extreme sports such as snowboarding, skateboarding and skiing, but at Monticello Raceway Halfpipe has another meaning.

The Monticello Raceway version of Halfpipe is a 6-year-old trotting gelding who has won five times this year and has been victorious in each of his last three starts.

Bruce Aldrich Jr. has picked up where he left off. After spending most of the year at his new home track, Saratoga Raceway, Aldrich has returned full time—at least while the Spa City oval is closed—to the Monticello Raceway where he won more races than any other driver during the first decade of the 21st Century.
At the Mighty M on Tuesday, December 18 Bruce Aldrich, Jr. scored his second consecutive five-bagger. The previous day he also won five races.

Nowadays, final race times don’t really underscore the class of those horses competing. It seems that every race goes fast these days; be it a high priced claimer or a conditioned horse. Even the lesser class claimers put up times that FFA (Free-For-All) horses turned in decades ago.
So with the aforementioned in mind handicappers will have to make a decision in Monticello Raceway’s 1-3/4 mile Marathon Trot which will go to post in race number four on Wednesday afternoon, December 19. Will class hold up in this long distance race?

Santa Claus is coming to town on Sunday, December 16…Well at least to Monticello Raceway and Casino.


On that afternoon the jolly ole gent will be horse drawn to the winners circle  and if it is anything like it has been in the past few years, the children will be cheering.


Santa’s visit is part of the special 10-race card on Sunday which has been added to coincide with the children’s fourth annual Free, Fabulous, Fantasy  Holiday Party.


Since Monticello Raceway instituted its Au Revoir back in 1991 only five times has the race been presented. Although the raceway had tried to fill it every year since the inaugural the fact remains that there is usually is a shortage of 14 year olds still racing in December of the final year of eligibility. And although the amount varies slightly from year to year during this season there were only 54 14 year olds   that made at least one start.

After his victory on November 28 with his beloved trotter My Buddy Chimo,  John Gilmour announced in the winner’s circle that he was retiring from driving.


Unbeknownst to nearly everyone, Gilmour sprung that on the world although he admitted he’ll continue training his current five- horse stable.  “Now I’ll leave the driving to them young fellers.”


Asked why all of a sudden did he decided to retire the 74-year-old reinsman simply said “I wanted to go out a winner.”


Amateur driver Alan Schwartz is having a banner year. Not only did he rein his 57th winner of the season at Monticello Raceway on December 3rd but that triumph was Schwartz’s 500th of his amateur driving career. Schwartz’s milestone victory came behind Space Chalet in a time of 1:58.1.


Would you like to have your horse’s name in the record books? If so, Monticello Raceway is offering a chance for that to happen in its 1-3/4 mile trot slated for Wednesday afternoon, December 19, dubbed ‘the Monticello Marathon’.

During the 2009 season, the last time the Mighty M presented the Monticello Marathon, Pembroke Prayer and driver Mike Micallef established a new world record at that distance when they toured the double oval in a time of 3:40. Pembroke Player erased the former standard of 3:42.4 set the previous year by Lively Moment, also at Monticello Raceway.