Us Harness Racing

St. Julien through Chuck Sylvester

ST. JULIEN t, 2:11¼ 1990 [1869-1894]

Foaled in 1869, this son of Volunteer-Flora spent the early part of his life pulling a milk wagon in Orange County, NY. He was sold for $600 to James Gaiway of New York City, who named the gelding St. Julien after seeing the name on a bottle of wine. St. Julien made his first start at age seven in 1876, winning all six races and taking a record of 2:22½. Three years later, in the hands of Orrin Hickok, St. Julien became the world's champion, trotting the mile at Oakland, CA in 2:12¾ and lowering his record a year later, at Hartford, CT, to 2:11¼. He died in 1894 at age 25.

FRANKLIN E. SAFFORD 1981 [1910-1977]

A native of New Hampshire, Frank Safford was a trainer-driver who, in 1941, won 14 consecutive starts at Saratoga and led the country with 117 wins. He was the leading driver at Roosevelt Raceway in 1946 and 1947 and at Bay State in 1958 and 1960. His most famous horse was Knight Dream, with whom he won The Little Brown Jug in 1948. He is credited with 1,629 wins, but probably scored at least as many more before the USTA began to keep such records in 1939. Frank Safford developed many top horses for the Gray Brothers Stable of East Providence, RI. He died in 1977 in Southern Pines, NC.

MONROE SALISBURY 1959 [c1837-1907]

Very little is known about his early life except that he was thought to have been born circa 1837 in Evans, Erie County, NY and settled in Chicago before 1871. For a time he was a partner in the real estate business with Marshall Field. He then moved to the west coast to open a stage coach line and there became Interested in horses. He proved to be an excellent horseman and with the help of some good horses, he became tops as a trainer and developer of champions, training over the famed Pleasanton. CA track. Known as "The Kingmaker", he was responsible for the popularity and reputation of the Director family - Direct, Directum, Directly, Azote, Blind Jib and many others. He died in New York City in 1907.

MILLARD SANDERS 1959 [1856-1928]

Sanders was born in Georgia in 1856 and as a young man became a trainer for W. J. Gordon of Cleveland. He made a champion of Guy, 2:10¾ and later hitched Guy with 3 stablemates to sleigh to become the talk of the country; the likes of U.S. Grant and J.D. Rockefeller being favored with a trip in it down Euclid Avenue.
After a short sojourn to California he returned to Indiana. There he developed and drove Lou Dillon to the first 2:00 mile in 1903. Although he had an unorthodox manner of training, Sanders made good racehorses of many and proved it with Lou Dillon. His book, THE TWO-MINUTE HORSE, was published after his retirement. He died in 1928 after a stroke.

SANDY'S SABLE 2001 p, 2, 2:00.1m [1974-2001]

Sandy's Sable was a 1974 daughter of Race Time and Carolonda by Tar Heel. She was bred by Castleton Farm, Lexington, KY and owned by Hanover Shoe Farms of Hanover, PA. Sandy's Sable was the dam of 14 foals who have collectively won $2.8 million. The offspring that qualified her for Broodmare Hall of Fame status are: Dragon's Lair p,5,1:51.3 ($1,085,317.), Bruce's Lady p,3,1:53.3m ($772,607.) and Cole Muffler p,3,1:53.3f ($682,380.). She was inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 2001. She died that same year, at the age of twenty-seven.

SAN FRANCISCO t, 2:07¾ 1975 [1903-1934]

San Francisco, owned by P. W. Hodges of California, was a foal of 1903, his sire being Zombro, his dam Oniska. During his career at the stud, San Francisco sired 351 Standard performers and the dams of 367. It was one of his daughters who produced Volomite. In 1945 San Francisco was the leading sire of 2:00 performers and at that time was the only sire of 100 or more 2:10 performers at both gaits. He died at Walnut Hail in 1934.

Nick Saponara 2005 [ ]

ALBERT E. SAUNDERS 1979 [c1870-1956]

Al Saunders said he was "foaled in Cleveland but could only estimate exactly when." Towards the end of his life he guessed himself to be in his upper eighties. His greatest driving exploits came in 1898, when he toured the continent with his prized trotter Kodak, placing in the money in 32 out of 43 races. Shortly thereafter he was injured and became a promoter on the Grand Circuit. In 1930 he settled in Goshen, NY to work with Walter Cox, who was in charge of William Cane's racing interests. He spent the rest of his life there, working as a race secretary at the two tracks. He also was a prolific writer on the sport, authoring a regular column titled "Saunders Says". He died in 1956.

MARION W. SAVAGE 1974 [1859-1916]

Marion W. Savage had a good business as proprietor of the International Stock Food Company in Minneapolis, MN and it got even better after he purchased Dan Patch, for whom he paid $60,000 in 1902. Savage and his horse became world-famous - it was Dan Patch Day wherever Dan went. The Dan Patch name appeared in all segments of society. Not only was Dan a popular "show business" attraction, but Savage put his horse on a hectic race-against-the-clock schedule which took him all over the country, shattering records as he went. So close were Dan Patch and M. W. Savage that when Dan died on July 11, 1916, Savage died the next day, as related by Fred A. Sasse in his book THE DAN PATCH STORY. Savage also owned such famous horses as Roy Wilkes, Directum, Arion, Minor Heir and Cresceus.

BERNARD J. "BENNY" SCHUE 1979 [1910-1977]

Known throughout the harness world as the trainer for Hayes Fair Acres Stable, Benny Schue is most remembered for developing Pronto Don, the 1951 Harness Horse of the Year. During his career he drove
823 winners for over $1.25 million and posted twenty-one 2:00 victories, his fastest being behind Dudley Hanover in 1:57.4. His best year was 1951, when he ran second in the nation in the Universal Driver Rating System with a .454 average. He also served as a Judge at various tracks. He died in 1977.

Jack Schultz* 1983

SCOTLAND t, 1:59¼ 1956 [1925-1956]

Scotland, foaled in 1925, was owned by Henry Oliver of Pittsburgh, PA, and sired by Peter Scott out of Roya McKinney. He ended his two-year-old season with a record of 2:05, and was second in The Hambletonian as a three-year-old, then taken out of training until he was five. In 1930 at Syracuse, Ben White drove him in 1:59¼.
After the 1930 season Scotland was retired to stud at Oliver's Poplar Hill Farm in Kentucky. Purchased In August 1936 by Dr. Ogden Edwards of Walnut Hall, KY, he was responsible for 160 trotters (6 in 2:00, 40 in 2:05) and 114 pacers (2 in 2:00, 25 in 2:05).
Scotland died February 9, 2023 at Walnut Hall Farm.

SCOTT FROST t, 1:58.3 1984 [1952-1983]

The son of Hoot Mon and Nora, he was a foal of 1952, owned by S. A. Camp Farms of Shafter, CA. Joe O'Brien trained and drove him to become the two-year-old Trotter of the Year in 1954 and Harness Horse of the Year in '55 and '56, making him the first double winner. In 1955 he was trotting's initial Triple Crown winner, taking The Hambletonian, The Yonkers Trot and The Kentucky Futurity. All in all, Scott Frost won 51 out of 71 starts, with ten seconds and four third place finishes. He died at the age of 31 in 1983.

JONAS SEELEY 1992 [1797-1882]

The Seeley family of Orange County, NY, was probably the first of the numerous families in the county to sense the importance of broodmare families and to start systematically building them up. It began around the year 1800 and culminated in 1849, when Hambletonian was foaled on the farm of Jonas Seeley in Sugar Loaf, NY. Six months later Seeley sold the suckling foal and his dam to his hired hand, William M. Rysdyk, for $125. This was the beginning of a new era In the trotting world.

George Segal 1996

JOSEPH SERRILL 1958 [1876-1951]

In 1911 Joe Serrill appeared in Lexington, KY for the "trots" with a trotter named Peter Thompson, who was owned by A. B. Coxe of Paoli, PA. He won The Kentucky Futurity at that meeting with Peter Thompson, in 2:07 1/2. In 1918, he returned with Nella Dillon and again won The Futurity. For the third time in 1921, he won with Helen Dillon. For twenty years Serrill raced and won with Coxe's horses and finally retired to become an official at race meetings. Noted as a developer of trotters, he was one of the top reinsmen of his day.

SHADOW WAVE p, 1:56 3/5 1977 [1955-1972]

The son of Adios-Shadow Grattan, Shadow Wave was foaled in 1955 at Castleton Farm and although he raced only one season, as a three-year-old, he won $91,881 for his owners, the S. A. Camp Farms. He won twenty of his thirty-one starts, including the 1958 Little Brown Jug, and raced six miles in 2:00 or better. Shadow Wave's first crop of foals appeared In 1961. In 1963 he was purchased by P. J. Baugh of Almahurst Farm, where he stood till the time of his death in 1972.

SHARPSHOOTER t, T2:01 1/5 1977 [1955-1976]

A Worthy Boy-Muriel Hanover horse, Sharpshooter was one of the most successful sires in New York State and ranked well up in the national standings. He stood at Aknusti Farms in Delhi, NY and was owned by E. Roland Harriman, Elbridge T. Gerry, Sr., Harry Pownall and Richard Stephans. Two of his more successful offspring were Geranium and Happy Warrior. Sharpshooter died at Aknusti in February, 1976.

Thomas F. Shehan1987

William R. Shehan [1929-1991]

William Shehan, a native of Ann Arbor, Michigan, was born October 1, 1929. He was a graduate of the University of Michigan and, for almost twenty years, maintained a New York corporate law practice, specializing in international finance.
While in college, Bill Shehan rubbed horses for Immortal Sanders Russell. A quick learner, Shehan developed his own ideas on the kind of gait it took to go fast and he tried to develop that gait within his own band of broodmares. He was first listed as a breeder by the USTA in 1955 on Fleeting Star. Adora, Golden Miss, K. Nora and Lover's Walk were very important foundation mares in Shehan's band. Initially breeding and selling yearlings under this own name, in 1977 William Shehan developed Clermont Farm, a 560-acre Standardbred nursery in the Bluegrass State.
Bill Shehan bred expressly for the traits of good gait and physical type. His object was to breed away from any faults. He was also successful in bringing to life several branches of maternal families who have produced top performers, generation after generation. Adora was the dam of Adora's Dream and K. Nora. K. Nora is the grandam of Three Diamonds, the dam of Life Sign. K. Nora is also the dam of Angel Hair,who is the dam of Naughty But Nice and the grandam of Leah Almahurst the dam of Western Ideal. The family of Golden Miss lists Real Desire, Grinfromeartoear and Royalflush Hanover, all winners of over $1 million and Rustler Hanover, a winner of $971,638.
Lovester was the result of breeding Lover's Walk to Speedster. This Grand Circuit stakes filly is the dam of Rosemary, voted Three-Year-Old Filly Trotter of 1978, and the grandam of Royal Prestige. Shehan's skills also link him to Self Possessed, Continentalvictory and Act of Grace. In total, Sheehan was the breeder of 300 Standardbreds, including Little Brown Jug winner Strike Out, Yonkers Trot victor Tamerlane, world champion Lightning Strikes, multiple stakes winner Cavalcade, Shifting Scene, Diamond Exchange, Hilarion, Justin Passing, and Short Stop.
The formation of the Kentucky Standardbred Sales Company in 1980 was the brainchild of Bill Shehan, Tom Crouch of Kentuckiana Farm and several other yearling consignors. This Standardbred sales company is one of the highest averaging sale companies in North America and boasts of having sold the highest priced yearling ever at public auction:1999, Experience Victory ($650,000). Experience Victory's grandam, Katie Almahurst was owned, as a yearling, by Shehan.
Many of the fillies bred and sold by Shehan went on to exceptional broodmare careers at major farms and their offspring each year continue to produce superior yearlings for the major sale companies. Mr. Shehan passed away in 1991, leaving his mark on the Standardbred industry as one of the great modern-day breeders.

CHARLOTTE N. SHEPPARD 1988 [1898-1987]

Charlotte Cassin Newton Sheppard, widow of Lawrence B. Sheppard, was chairman of the board of Hanover Shoe Farms and a breeder-owner of international renown. Raised on her father's ranch in San Antonio, she hunted and fished alongside her dad, worked cattle like a seasoned cowhand and could "ride like a wild Indian." Her most famous home-bred was the Triple Crown winner Ayres, a result of breeding the mare Arpege to the pre-eminent stallion, Star's Pride. At the time of her death, in April 1987, she was the only woman to have bred a Triple Crown winner. Other horses associated with Mrs. Sheppard include Cassin Hanover and the great trotting mare Elma.

LAWRENCE B. SHEPPARD 1968 [1897-1968]

Born on December 13, 2022 in Baltimore, MD, Sheppard was a founder, in 1926, of the internationally famous Hanover Shoe Farm. Among the honor roll of the earlier Hanover stallions were Dillion Axworthy, Guy McKinney, Calumet Chuck, Peter the Brewer, Mr. McElwyn, Spencer Scott, Dean Hanover (Sheppard's personal favorite), Billy Direct, His Excellency, Bill Gallon, Sandy Flash, Hoot Mon, Titan Hanover and Adios. He was president of the USTA (1950-1958) and was a founder of The Hall of Fame of the Trotter in Goshen, NY. He died in 1968.

BION SHIVELY 1974 [1878-1970]

Bion Shively's contributions to harness racing were nationally acclaimed in 1967, when he became the first driver inducted into the U.S. Harness Writers' Living Hall of Fame. Perhaps Shively's biggest moment came in 1952 when, at the age of 74, he guided Sharp Note to victory in The Hambletonian; becoming the oldest driver ever to win the sport's premier race. In addition to Sharp Note, he trained and drove such champions as Rodney, Scottish Chief and Gay Song. Born in Indiana in 1878, Bion Shively began his career as a Jockey and devoted his efforts to the runners until he entered the Spanish-American War. Upon his return from the war he turned his attention to the Standardbreds. He retired In 1959 and died at his home in Pomona, CA in 1970.

GEORGE F. SHOLTY 2000 [1932-2000]

George Sholty was from a Logansport, IN harness racing family. He won his first harness race with George Jr., at Frankfort, IN in 1951. George raced predominantly on the East Coast through the late 1950s and early 1960s. He was one of the dominant reinsmen of that era, winning numerous driving titles at Yonkers Raceway, NY and Roosevelt Raceway, NY. George Sholty racked up 2,934 driving career wins and earned over $20 million in purse money. One of his most prestigious accomplishments was winning two legs of the 1966 Pacing Triple Crown (Little Brown Jug, and the Messenger Stake) with Romeo Hanover. (Romeo Hanover won the Cane Pace with Wm. Meyer driving.) Sholty won dozens of classic races, including the 1979 Hambletonian with Legend Hanover, and the 1979 Meadowlands Pace with Sonsam. He also trained and piloted Gentle Stroke to a heat win in the 1984 Hambletonian, and won the 1985 $1 million Peter Haughton Memorial at the Meadowlands with Two-Year-Old Colt Trotter of the Year, Express Ride. He trained and drove two Breeders Crown winners, Conifer in 1984, and Armbro Fling in 1987. The Sholty-trained and John Campbell-driven Express Ride captured a 1985 Breeders Crown victory. Sholty also trained and drove Anniecrombie. Considered, in his time, a master tactician, Sholty drove his last race in 1998. He was sixty-six. George Sholty's success as a conditioner of champion Standardbreds equaled or surpassed his talent as a driver. He trained Fake Left to a win in the 1992 Little Brown Jug. It was his second Little Brown Jug win and an upset victory that spoiled the bid of favorite Western Hanover for the Triple Crown. Other great racehorses trained by Sholty include Coffee Break, Armbro Hilary, Scott S. Hanover, Armbro Iliad, Nevele Olympian, Calm Down, Florida Pro, Passing Glance, Ideal Society, Raven Hanover, and Rivaltime, who was partially owned by basketball star Wilt Chamberlain. Driver-trainer George Sholty was inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 1984. He passed away in Lexington, KY on December 14, 2000.

Roy Shudt* 1983

JOHN F. SIMPSON, SR. 1995 [1919-1995]

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971, John Simpson served as Chairman of the Board of Hanover Shoe Farms in Pennsylvania, one of the nation's largest Standardbred nurseries. During his harness-driving career, he won almost $5 million in purses. He won the Hambletonian twice, with Hickory Smoke in 1957 and Ayres in 1964. He also won the Little Brown Jug three times (with Noble Adios, 1956; Torpid, 1957 and Bullet Hanover, 1960). He was also the leading money winning driver in 1951. He set at least 15 major world records and won all six of the Triple Crown races for both gaits. He was a Trustee of the Trotting Horse Museum from 1975-1981 and a Trustee Emeritus from 1982-1995, John Simpson passed away, in Orlando, Florida, on August 28, 1995.

SINGLE G. p,1:58½ 1954 [1910-1940]

Named for the white marking on his forehead, Single G. was foaled in 1910, sired by Anderson Wilkes out of Little Gyp. He was bred by W. B. Barefoot, Cambridge City, IN, and L. D. Commons, Converse, IN. In 1912 Single G. was sent to the sales and purchased at auction for $275 by H. S. Beard. After Beard's death, Barefoot became his sole owner."
Author Marie Hill was told by Carl Barefoot, nephew of William Barefoot, "the day Single G. went through the sale at Cambridge City my Uncle Will, who owned a poultry business in Cambridge City and Muncie, IN had to be away on company business. He asked his friend H. S. Beard to bid on Single G. and that money was no object, he wanted the colt".
From the ages of three until sixteen, "the wonder horse" started in 434 heats and won 262, earning $121,125. He won 98*1 races, setting an all-time record. On September 26, 1923, Single G. established a world record for four heats over a half-mile track when he won a match race at Bangor, ME over Margaret Dillon, 1:58¼ and Sir Roch, 1:59¾. His fastest mile was 1:58½ at the age of thirteen, Single G. also paced a 2:00 mile at age 15. No horse has duplicated that at such an advanced age.
Single G. was also the first horse to beat two minutes twice in one day and he was the leading money winning Standardbred ($121,125) for over twenty years after his retirement in 1926.—Marie Hill.—He was retired at seventeen and sired 81 performers with Standard records. Later on he was known as the horse that time forgot because he raced so good for so long." He died in 1940.

"*1"The 99th win;In 1922, a race at Dade Park, Evansville, IN was postponed for almost a week because of heavy rains. Eventually the race was held and Single G. won from Hal Mahone and John Henry. The race wasn't entered into the record books for 1922 and is often referred to as "the lost race".

Anthony W. Sisti1988

SLEEPY TOM p, 2:12¼ 1992 [1866-1886]

"The pacing wonder" of the late 1870s, this saddle-bred horse, whose sire Tom Rolfe was a son of the world champion free-legged pacer Pocahontas, did perhaps more than any other harness horse to popularize the pacing gait. He was one of the famed barnstorming quartet that included Mattie Hunter, Lucy and Rowdy Boy - the "Big Four" that was a major attraction during the late 1870s on the Grand Circuit. Sleepy Tom went blind at the age of seven, but scored many of his notable successes following his blindness, including his two world records in 1879. He died in a barn fire in Indiana in 1886.

George A. Smallsreed* 1992

T. WAYNE "CURLY" SMART 1969 [1904-1976]

This native of Ostrander, OH won over $2.5 million in purses during his 50 year career as a trainer-driver. Although he raced on every major track in the country, it was the Delaware, OH ½-mile oval and The Little Brown Jug he was most associated with in the minds of harness racing people. He won the initial Jug in 1946 with Ensign Hanover and repeated in 1952 with Meadow Rice. He is credited by the USTA with 1,873 victories and drove 45 2:00 miles from 1939 to 1972. Smart served on the USTA board for a number of years. He died in 1976.

H. STACEY SMITH 1992 [c1873-1938J

Active in the sport for nearly forty years, Stacey Smith introduced Dean Hanover (webmasters note; when Stacey Smith owned the horse, he was raced under the name, Mr. Watt) to fame when the two-year-old set a world record for age and gait on a half-mile track (Weequahic Park in Newark, NJ). Smith was very active as an amateur driver with the Road Horse Association of New Jersey which staged its events at Weequahic. A prominent owner, he raced Maid McElywn, Ben All and other horses that competed under the name of the Newbrook Stable, which he co-owned with William Strang. He died on November 8, 1938.

SPEEDSTER t, 1:59 4/5 1981 [1954-1977]

Foaled in 1954, he was the son of Rodney and the Dean Hanover mare Mimi Hanover. The winner of nearly $100,000, his best year was as a four-year-old when he won four legs of The Empire State Classics. He was most successful at the stud at Castleton Farm, siring two Hambletonian winners, Speedy Scot and Speedy Streak, Kentucky Futurity winner Speed Model, and the fastest trotting mare up to that time, Colonial Charm. One of his daughters produced the 1975 Hambletonian winner Bonefish. Speedster died at Castleton Farm in 1977.

SPEEDY CROWN 2, T2:01, 2; 3, 1:57.1 2000 [1968-2000]

Speedy Crown was a great racehorse and a great sire. Trained by Hall of Famer Howard Beissinger, the Immortal Speedy Scot colt out of Missile Toe by Immortal Florican, was bred by wife, Ann Beissinger of Hamilton, OH. In the spring of his two-year-old year he was purchased by Thomas and Frank Antonacci's Crown Stable. Beissinger continued to train and drive him. That year he was raced lightly, winning four of his eight starts, earning $2,025. In 1971, he dominated the major three-year-old stakes, winning 15 of 24 starts. His finest victory was a straight heat win in the Hambletonian. He set a world record of 1:59 2/5, at Delaware, OH in the Old Oaken Bucket and went on to set a 1:57.1 mark at the Red Mile in Lexington, KY. These performances earned him Trotter of the Year honors. The following year, 1972, Speedy Crown took on all competition. He won over $350,000 and was voted Four-Year-Old Trotter of the Year. In a memorable series of races, Speedy won the Roosevelt International Trot, the 1¼ mile Challenge Match, the Realization and the American Trotting Championship. In the 3-horse Challenge Match, Speedy Crown defeated the great French mare Une de Mai and the top North American mare, Immortal Fresh Yankee, in 2:32.1. This was three seconds faster than his winning time in the International, another 1¼ mile race. That same year Speedy Crown equalled Nevele Pride's world record of 1:58f. With lifetime earnings totaling $545,495, he retired as the sixth richest trotting stallion in history. At four, Speedy was syndicated for $1 million He went to Lana Lobell Farm, where he spent the major part of his breeding career. No other trotting sire has accomplished what Speedy Crown has with regard to the earnings of his offspring. He was retired from breeding in 1996. At the time of his death he had sired 2,201 foals who have won more than $106 million. He sired 450 trotters with records of 2:00 or faster. His top performer is Moni Maker, two-time Horse of the Year, the richest Standardbred in history, with earnings in excess of $5.5 million, and the fastest (1:52.1) of his progeny. He also sired Hambletonian winners Speedy Somolli (1978), Prakas (1985), and Armbro Goal (1988) as well as 1984 Horse of the Year Fancy Crown. Gleam, winner of the 1994 Hambletonian Oaks, was a daughter of Speedy Crown while Muscles Yankee, winner of the 1998 Hambletonian, is a great-great grandson of the prolific sire. He is also the great-grand sire of Valley Victory who, as of 2000, has produced 26 in 1:55, winners of $28 million, 6 $1 million winners, and three Hambletonian winners (Continentalvictory, Victory Dream and Muscles Yankee). Valley Victory is also the grandsire of 1999 Hambletonian winner, Self Possessed, 3,1:51.3 ($1.3 million). No other stallion has sired as many $1 million winners as Speedy Crown: Moni Maker, Royal Prestige, Britelite Lobell, Embassy Lobell, Crown's Invitation, Armbro Fling, Prakas, Kit Lobell, Armbro Goal, Gum Ball and Nealy Lobell. His grandson Remington Crown of Sweden and great-grandson Varenne of Italy, who won the 2001 Prix d'Amerique, are among Europe's best trotters. His sons have also become leading sires in Europe. Inducted into The Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 1996, Speedy Crown, reigned as leading money-winning trotting sire for thirteen years. He died on May 4, 2000. He was thirty two years old. He is buried in the infield at Historic Track, Goshen NY

SPEEDY SCOT t, 1:56.4 1994 [1960-1990]

Foaled in 1960 at Castleton Farm in Kentucky and sired by Speedster out of Scotch Love, Speedy Scot earned his place in Standardbred history by setting records and siring top performers. As a two-year-old he won 14 of 19 starts and trotted to a mark of 2:01.1, a very respectable time for a trotting colt in 1962. The next year he stormed to the pinnacle of the sport by becoming the second horse to capture the Trotting Triple Crown. At four he continued to maintain his championship form, defeating such free-for-all stars as Su Mac Lad and Duke Rodney. The 30-year-old stallion died peacefully in 1990 at Castleton, where he had lived for all but the three years he spent at racetracks.

Speedy Somolli

SPENCER t, 1:59¾ 1957 [1925-1942]

By Lee Tide out of Petrex and bred by David Look, Spencer was foaled at Castleton Farm in Kentucky. In the hands of Alonzo McDonald, Spencer was a three-year-old trotting sensation and later went in 1:59¾ for trainer/driver William H. Leese, who drove him to victory in The Hambletonian and The Kentucky Futurity. He was retired to Castleton Farm and was superb as a sire. At the end of 1941 he had 132 trotters and pacers in the record lists. Such names as Emily Stokes, Volation, Spintell, Tilly Tonka and many others are credited to him. He died in 1942 at Castleton.

SPENCER SCOTT t, 1:57¼ 1956 [1937-1950]

Sired by Scotland out of May Spencer, he was foaled in 1937 at Castleton Farm in Kentucky. As a yearling he was purchased by Charles W. Phellis and developed and raced by Fred Egan. At two he had a record of 2:05 and the next year dominated the stakes, including his win in The Hambletonian. In 1941, as a four-year-old, he set the world champion trotting stallion mark of 1:57¼ at Lexington. He was retired to Castleton and then leased to Hanover Shoe Farm, which later purchased him for $50,000. There he sired the champions Rodney, Egan Hanover and many others. He died at Hanover Shoe Farm on January 22, 1950.

SPINSTER 1981 [1930- ]

A foal of 1930, by Spencer out of Minnetonka, she contributed to both gaits on two continents. Her son Light Brigade was perhaps the most influential horse ever exported to Australia. His name appears on virtually every major pedigree "down under". Spinster's daughter, The Old Maid, sired by Guy Abbey, is regarded as one of the modern era foundation mares. Another Spinster filly, Lady Scotland, is the dam of Harold J., a noted 2:00 sire and Breath O Spring, the dam of Race Time and Storm Damage.

JOHN SPLAN 1958 [1849-1918]

Born in 1849 at Utfie Falls, NY, he quit school as a young boy and worked on a farm near his home. From there he went to work for Isaac Woodruff, brother of Hiram. In 1864 Splan was employed by Dan Mace and spent two years refining his skills under the tutelage of The Wizard of the Reins".
After establishing himself as an up-and-coming horseman, he went out on his own and by 1874 was racing horses on the Grand Circuit. In 1876 he had Rarus heading his stable as a champion trotter until 1879, when Rarus was sold to Robert Bonner for $36,000 and retired. Splan thereafter had Charley Ford, 2:16¾, Mattie Hunter, 2:12¾ and Johnston, 2:06¼, all good horses in their time. In the 1890's he entered the auction sale business and was instrumental, with his knowledge of breeding, in building up Walnut Hall Farm in Kentucky, where he retired. His book, LIFE WITH THE TROTTERS, was a best-seller and is still used as an excellent reference. He died in Kentucky in 1918.

LELAND STANFORD1958 [1824-1893]

Leland Stanford was born near Albany, NY in 1824. In 1852 he went west just after the 1849 gold rush) and made his fortune. Because of his love of trotting horses and interest in breeding, he started a farm in Palo Alto, CA in 1875, which later would become the site of Stanford University. His first champion, Occident, 2:16¾ laid the foundation of his breeding farm which included 11,000 acres. (A track was added in 1879.) In 1877 he purchased Electioneer for $12,500 from Stony Ford Farm in Campbell Hall, NY, near Goshen. While there, he also purchased twelve broodmares. Electioneer sired 600 foals. Stanford never raced horses but strived to produce early speed, which became known as the "Palo Alto System" of training. He died in 1893.
Leland Stanford was involved in the early days of moving picture technology As legend has it, Leland Stanford bet a friend $25,000 that the trotter, at one point in his gait, has all hooves off the ground at the same time. Edward Muybridge, a geologist working in the area, was called upon to prove the assertion. By a series of fast action still photographs, Stanford's theory was proved and he won the bet. Muybridge's Study in Animal Locomotion, the study of the gait and motion of the horse and other animals had begun; his first subject was the Standardbred horse....

STAR POINTER p, 1:59¼ 1954 [1889-1910]

Star Pointer" was sired by Brown Hal out of Sweepstakes, and was bred by Captain H. P. Pointer, of Springhill, TN. His racing career began in 1894 when five years old, and the following season he won every start. He raced against the "pacing kings", fighting duels against them, and by 1897 was the top pacer, defeating them all by pacing in 2:01 that season. At Readville, MA on August 27, 1897, he became the "Pacing King" by going the mile in 1:59¼, the first harness horse ever to beat 2:00. His last campaign was in 1899, after which he broke down and was retired to stud in Columbia, TN, where he died in 1910.

STAR'S PRIDE t, 1:57 1/5 1979 [1947-1977]

The son of Worthy Boy and Stardxift was purchased as a yearling for $2,950. Star's Pride was first Jointly owned by E. Roland Harriman and Lawrence B. Sheppard and trained by Harry Pownall. A winner of $104,969, he frequently raced with stablemate Florican. He entered stud at Hanover Shoe Farm in 1959 and Sheppard bought Harriman's share for
$100,000 plus breeding rights then valued at
$50,000. Star's Pride became the sire of eight Hambletonian winners; Hickory Pride, Nevele Pride, Lindy's Pride and Super Bowl, to mention a few. He died in 1977 at Hanover Shoe Farm and at that time his offspring had won $25 million and his yearlings had sold for $9.4 million.

GEORGE STARR 1959 [1852-1945]

Born in 1852 in Camden, NJ, George Starr became interested in riding as a boy. He started out as a steeplechaser, but gave it up to race Standardbreds. He was trained under William Doble and his son Budd, and later went to work for Monroe Salisbury of California and William Simpson at Empire City Farm, NY. His top horse was the pacer Direct, 2:05½. In 1891 his success was chiefly racing pacers under saddle and his best performer was Johnston, 2:13½. Known as "Gentleman George", he was active in Lexington, KY at a public stable with horses such as The Northern Man, 2:06½ and the pacers Vinette, 2:09¼ and Flying Jib, 2:04¼. He died in Lexington in 1945 at the age of ninety-three.

RICHARD S. STALEY 2001 [1930-1997]

Richard Staley, a native of Decatur, IL, was born on September 20, 1930. His grandfather established the A. E. Staley Co., which is one of the world's leading soybean and corn processors. He also started the Decatur Staley's, a professional football team; they became the Chicago Bears. Richard Staley was an owner and breeder of Standardbreds, participating in harness racing at the highest levels for more than twenty-five years. He became involved in the sport after attending a seminar at Hollywood Park in 1970. 1995 Immortal Preston Jenuine recommended Doug Ackerman as a trainer; this proved to be a successful, lasting relationship. Richard Staley owned many outstanding Grand Circuit performers, including Crowning Point 3,1:54m ($343,662.), Armbro Cadet p,4,1:53.2m ($693,392.), Albaquel p,3,1:53.3m ($498,222.), and Denali p,4,1:55.lm ($485,795.); Noble Hustle 3,1:58.lm ($399,620.), Self Confident 2,l:57.3m ($371,416.), Ever So Rich p,4,1:54.2f ($573,756.) and his favorite, Bramble Hall p, 10, 1:58.4m ($215,809.). Staley also maintained a select broodmare band. The year he passed away his 30 starters won 69 races and $669,803, ranking him 17th on the 1996 list of leading money-winning owners. He was an enthusiastic patron of the Grand Circuit and attended many major yearling sales. Dick Staley provided support for harness racing in many other ways, never seeking credit for his actions. One instance was his help in funding harness meets at several California tracks, including one at the Del Mar track, close to his home in La Jolla and where his horses trained. In the non-harness racing world Dick Staley's generosity was also abundant. In the early 1950s he moved to California. There he joined the Mercer Studios, in Hollywood, as a cameraman. He worked on "The Apartment," the winner of an Academy Award for best picture in 1960. Unfortunately, six years later the studio failed. Caught in the business' demise were three of Staley's friends. They were just three years shy of receiving pensions. He quietly purchased the business and kept it running just long enough for his friends to reach retirement age. He then sold the studio, at a sizable financial loss. Richard Staley epitomized all that is good in human conduct. He preferred to be inconspicuous with his staunch efforts for the sport of Harness Racing. However, his quiet deeds and self-effacing personality will always be remembered and honored. Richard Staley died on February 19, 2023 in La Jolla, CA. He was sixty-six years old.

Bruce Stearns 2002 [1943-2001]

Bruce Stearns was also honored in 1986 with the USHWA Golden Pen Award

STENOGRAPHER t, T1:59.1 1994 [1951-1986]

A filly resulting from the mating of Bill Gallon and Follow Me, she was owned by Max Hempt and trained and driven by Delvin Miller. She set a world record and won numerous stakes, including The Coaching Club Trotting Oaks and The Acorn. In 1954 the U.S. Harness Writers elected her Horse of the Year. As a broodmare, she produced a number of top offspring, notably Keystone Selene, the dam of world champion Keystone Sister, 1:59. Stenographer lived to a ripe old 35 and is buried at Hempt Farms, Mechanicsburg, PA next to Bye Bye Byrd and Hickory Pride.

Chuck Stokes* 1983

HARRY STOKES 1976 [1876-1939]

An Ohio native, Harry Stokes began driving and racing trotters on half-mile tracks throughout the state. His first "good drive" was in 1920, when he substituted for Tom Murphy who, due to injury, could not take his seat that day behind Arion Guy and Peter Manning. Stokes' judgment of driving was excellent. Because of this he earned a good reputation as one of the ablest, most light-handed and clever race drivers on the Grand Circuit. Active on the nation's racetracks for over four decades, Stokes was associated with the Good Time Stable in Goshen, NY for a number of years, as well as with other stables. He died in 1939 in Springfield, OH.


("W. E. D. Stokes")
Owner of the famed Patchen Wilkes Farm in Kentucky (named after the farm's head stallion), W.E.D. Stokes belonged to a family of great wealth, extended to several generations. Patchen Wilkes, a son of the great George Wilkes, sired Joe Patchen, the "iron horse" and the most popular harness horse of his day. In the late 1890's Patchen Wilkes was Joined by another son of George Wilkes, Onward, 2:25¼. By this time the Patchen Wilkes Farm had become one of the principal "speed nurseries" in the Blue Grass State.
Peter the Great was added to the roster in 1903 and sired Peter Volo, who later became the farm's premier stallion. Stokes passed away in New York City on May 18, 2022 at age 73.

WILLIAM H. STRANG, JR. 1992 [1882-1953]

An accomplished amateur reinsman and for many years associated with Nat Ray, the winning driver of the first Hambletonian Stake in 1926, Bill Strang was one of harness racing's most widely known figures of the time.
Ben White trained and drove for Strang and among his victories were the 1942 and 1943 Hambletonian Stakes with The Ambassador and Volo Song, respectively. He later owned Ford Hanover, undefeated in eleven starts in 1951, who won The Kentucky Futurity that year. Strang died on March 7, 1953.

SU MAC LAD t, 1:58.4 1988 [1954-1982]

Sired by Potomac Lad out of Spud's Sue, Su Mac Lad was the Harness Horse of the Year in 1962, as well as the Trotter of the Year in 1961 and 1963. He was the first U.S. trotter to win The Roosevelt International in 1961, a feat which he repeated in 1963. That same year he trotted the first 2:00 mile at Yonkers Raceway, repeating his performance at Roosevelt Raceway the following year. Beginning in 1956, at the age of two, Su Mac Lad raced every year (except 1957) for a total of 151 times, gaining 68 wins, 32 seconds and 18 thirds. When retired on Dec. 7, 1965 at Roosevelt, his earnings totaled $885,095, which was a record for that time. Purchased by Stanley Dancer for I. W. Berkemeyer six years earlier, "Sunnie" died in retirement at Dancer's New Egypt, NJ farm at age twenty-eight in 1982.

SUNOL t, 2:08¼ 1957 [1886-1909]

Sunol was foaled at Palo Alto Farm in California in 1886. She was by Electioneer out of Waxana. Under the guidance of Charles Marvin, she lowered the two-year-old world record to 2:18. As a four-year-old she went in 2:10½ and was purchased by Robert Bonner for $41,000. In 1891, despite lameness, she trotted in 2:08¼, at Stockton, CA, the last world record to high wheel sulky. She was retired to Bonner's stable and upon his death was sold to John Shuits of Brooklyn for $4,000 and later to A. B. Coxe of Pennsylvania for $400. She died at the Coxe farm in 1909.

SUPER BOWL 2, 1:59.4m; 3, 1:56.2m 1999 [1969-1999]

A Star's Pride - Pillow Talk - Rodney foal bred by Stoner Creek Stud, Inc., Super Bowl was trained and driven by Stanley Dancer. A bay horse standing 16.1 hands, Super Bowl was a world champion at 2 and 3 and a Triple Crown winner. He is one of the greatest trotting sires in the history of the sport with lifetime earnings totaling $600,156. At 2, he won 15 of 23 starts, set a world record on a 5/8 mile track and was voted 2-year-old Trotter of the Year. At 3, he won 23 of 28 starts, including the Hambletonian, Yonkers Futurity and Kentucky Futurity; he set a single-season earnings record for a trotter, and was voted Trotter of the Year. He was inducted into the Living Horse Hall of Fame in 1997.>br> As a sire, Super Bowl has been a leader since his first foals raced in 1976. He has sired the winners of over $75 million with 17 in 1:55, over 367 in 2:00, eleven $1 million winners and over 170 $100,000 winners. Super Bowl is the sire of Hambletonian winners American Winner, Tagliabue, Giant Victory, Probe, Legend Hanover and Speed Bowl. In addition, many of his sons and daughters have had great European careers; they include Napoletano, Express Ride, UConn Don and Jefs Spice.
Super Bowl is also making his mark as a broodmare sire with 352 2:00 credits, including the great race mare Peace Corps, as well as Arndon, Nearly Perfect, Hambletonian winners Harmonious and Alf Palema, and the great European trotter Coktail Jet. He died and was buried at Hanover Shoe Farms on October 2, 1999. He was 30.

Chuck Sylvester 1997

With such notable champions as Britelite Lobell, Waikiki Beach, Armbro Devona, Laughs and Park Avenue Joe, Chuck Sylvester has reigned as one of the most successful trainers in the sport for the past two decades. His name will be forever linked with Mack Lobell, possibly the greatest trotter of all time. Mack Lobell was Horse of the Year in 1987 and 1988; he set world records on all three, track sizes, won the Hambletonian, Yonkers Trot, and Breeders Crown, pushing his earnings in 1987 to $2,648,176. A native of Toledo, Ohio, Sylvester began in the sport in the mid 1960s, campaigning at Raceway Park and Detroit area tracks. During the past three decades, he has trained a succession of champions at both gaits including the three-year-old trotting colt Running Sea (1996) whose triumphs include a Breeders Crown final and the Kentucky Futurity. In 1993 and 1994 he trained another two-time Trotter of the Year, Pine Chip, T1.51, whose victories include the Kentucky Futurity, Breeders Crown, World Trotting Derby, and the American National. Other well-known Standardbreds he has trained include Diamond Exchange, Armbro Fern and Time Well Spent.