MHRI Welcomes Racing Fans Back to Running Aces

 In Harness Racing

On behalf of our members, President Justin Anfinson and the Board of Directors of Minnesota Harness Racing Inc. welcome racing fans back to beautiful Running Aces Casino & Racetrack for an exciting season of harness racing!

Opening Day on Saturday, May 18th marks the beginning of the 12th season of harness racing here in Columbus, Minnesota. Racing on Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday evenings throughout the Spring and Summer, until Minnesota Night of Champions on Closing Day, Saturday, September 14th, our dedicated horsemen and women and their speedy trotters and pacers will compete for purses of more than $5 million during the 2019 race meet.

2018 Minnesota Horse of the Year, Burning Blaze, cared for by veteran trainer Justin Anfinson for owners Alan and Cheryl Sandbulte of Maurice, Iowa and Edward Gutin of Massapequa, NY, is one of many Minnesota bred champions who will return to defend their titles this season.

Burning Blaze, a gelded pacer by Wind Me Up out of the Jet Laag mare Cowgirls N Indians, set a track record of 1:54.1 at Running Aces last summer on his way to a 2YO Divisional Championship. He won 7 times and placed twice in 9 starts for earnings of $53,250.

Also returning is Windmeupnwatchmego, a 3YO filly pacer, by Wind Me Up out of the well-bred Western Hanover mare Dangerous Years, and trained by Gordie Graham for breeder and owner Rick Davelaar of Rock Valley, Iowa.

Windmeupnwatchmego won 6 times and placed twice in 8 starts for earnings of $49,950 last year on her way to a 2YO Divisional Championship. The speedy filly set a track record in only her 3rd lifetime start when she crossed the finish line first in 1:54.1, one length in front of Minnesota Horse of the Year Burning Blaze.

Champion trotters, MD Magic and Twilight Tinker, are set to return for their three-year-old campaigns. MD Magic is the winningest Minnesota bred 2YO trotter of all-time with 9 wins and one 2nd place finish in 11 starts last year and earnings of $70,300 for owners Set the Pace Racing.

Racing mostly against the colts, filly trotter Twilight Tinker won and showed 3 times in 8 starts for earnings of $24,190 for owner and MHRI Director Cathy Dessert. Glenn Sauder bred both champion trotters.

Trainer Kathy Plested returns with an impressive stable of trotters and pacers, led by open trotting mare Silverlode, to defend another training title. Also returning to Running Aces to defend his title as leading driver is Steve Wiseman, who works during the day for his wife, trainer Kathy Plested.

MHRI represents breeders, owners, trainers, drivers, and backstretch workers who breed mares to Minnesota registered stallions and who race standardbreds at Running Aces and at Minnesota County Fairs in Cannon Falls, St. Peter and Wheaton.

On behalf of our members, MHRI gratefully recognizes and thanks our loyal and enthusiastic fans for your continued support of Minnesota Harness Racing. It is much appreciated! Have a great time at the track, and good luck betting our races!

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