He doesn’t get much national attention but Billy “Zeke” Parker Jr. is one of the best harness drivers of all time. And his record speaks for itself!
On the muddy afternoon of November 28, Zeke reined six winners on the Monticello Raceway card and with those victories his career win total is now at 10,855; seventh best all-time in North America.
During the month of December there will be several changes in the live racing schedule at Monticello Raceway.
The schedule during the first two weeks in December remains the same as always with live harness action on the afternoons of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
On Sunday December 16 there will be a special live afternoon race card to coincide with the Horsemen’s Holiday Party. After December 16 racing will continue on every weekday afternoon including Friday December 21.
Monticello Raceway’s Heritage Drivers Series began on January 17 with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Pace, for drivers of African-American heritage, and continued throughout the year with a race for seven other ethnic groups and culminated with the Maple Leaf Mile, for drivers of Canadian descent on October 23. Now on Thursday, November 29 the winning drivers of each of the preliminary legs in the Heritage Drivers Series will return to battle in the final event dubbed the All-America Cup.
Monticello Raceway’s Au Revoir, for 14-year-olds only, has always been is the last race of their careers.
This year the Au Revoir, scheduled for Thursday afternoon, December 27th , has a decent chance of filling which has not always been the case over the past few decades..
According to Eric Warner, the tracks director of racing, he has heard from four owners of the old-timers who would like their pacers to race in the career- ending event.
For the first time in 54 years of presenting awards banquets the Monticello-Goshen Chapter USHWA held their annual affair in Middletown, NY at The Fountains on Sands Road on Sunday, November 18. The night got underway with a cocktail hour at 5:30pm followed by dinner at 7pm. During the evening awards were presented to the deserving recipients.
Recently Jimmy Devaux passed a career milestone and he was feted at Monticello Raceway on Thursday, November 15 and presented with a blanket which stated Monticello Raceway congratulates him for reaching, and passing, the 3000 career win plateau.
Talk about consistency. How about the seasonal resumes of a pair of pacers owned by the Baron Racing Stable who were both victorious yesterday (Nov. 13) here at Monticello Raceway.
Art Glass, a 7 year old Art Major gelding, scored his 16th victory of the season stopping the clock in 1:58.1 while stablemate Arts Day, a 10 year old Artsplace gelding, notched his 14th victory of the year winning in 1:58.2. Both pacers are trained by Pete Pellegrino and were two of driver Greg Merton’s four winners on the card.
After a season of presenting races for drivers of different ethnicities, the winners of each will convene at Monticello Raceway on Thursday, November 29 to compete in the Heritage Drivers Series Final, dubbed the All-America Cup.
The Heritage Drivers Series began in January and throughout the year a different ethnic race was presented.
According to the rules and regulations set forth by the United States Trotting Association, the governing body of the Standardbred sport, less than two percent of all horses racing are 14 year olds and when they become 15 years of age on New Year’s Day they can no longer compete regularly in pari-mutuel races.
Bruce Aldrich Jr. was feted at Monticello Raceway on Tuesday afternoon, October 23 and presented with a blanket which stated the Mighty M congratulates him for reaching, and passing, the 4000 career win plateau.
Aldrich who made Monticello Raceway home during the first decade of the 21st Century reined more winners here than any other driver—Zeke Parker included- during the years from 2000 through 2009.