The Meadows Standardbred Owners Association’s members have selected Unlocked and Medusa as co-Horses of the Year for 2016. It is the first time in the history of the association that members’ voting resulted in a tie for the top spot.
Unlocked won seven of 23 starts at The Meadows during the year, earning in excess of $158,000 racing almost exclusively in the Preferred level. Owned by the Megan Rogers Racing Stable, Unlocked was trained throughout the year by Norm Parker. Unlocked was also named Pacer of the Year and Older Male Pacer of the Year.
Medusa, owned by Randy Bendis and Tom Pollack, won six of 15 local starts with earnings of more than $182,000. Bendis trains Medusa, who took a mark of 1:49, equal to the best 2016 win of Unlocked.
In other voting, Goodtogo Hanover was named MSOA Trotter of the Year, sporting a record of eight wins in 10 starts for trainer Bill Zendt, who co-owns the filly with Gary Saul. Goodtogo Hanover was also named Three-Year-Old Filly Trotter of the Year. Goodtogo Hanover was also the only repeat winner from last season, as she captured top 2YO filly honors in 2015.
Owner Bob Key swept the freshman pacing honors as Cinnabar Dragon and Terrortina were named Two-Year-Old Male Pacer and Filly Pacer of the Year, respectively. Rich Gillock trains Cinnabar Dragon, who hit the board in all six local starts with one win (1:55.1). Norm Parker trains Terrortina, a 2-time winner in five starts with a mark of 1:55.4.
Media Buzz, owned by trainer Steve Bush along with Alvira and Dennis Fassett, was named Two-Year-Old Male Trotter of the Year. The two-time winner took a mark of 1:56.3. McMullen Stable’s All Set Let’s Go, who split time with trainers John McMullen and Wilbur Yoder, was named the top freshman filly trotter. She hit the board in all six local starts with three wins and a mark of 1:58.1.
Rip This Joint, trained by Mike Palone for the Lone Wolf Stable, was named the top 3YO Male Pacer. Taking a mark of 1:51.2, Rip This Joint won four of 18 Meadows starts during the year and was an entrant in the track’s top race, the Delvin Miller Adios Pace.
The Bendis Stable earned their second honor of the night when Wasaga Beach was voted the top sophomore pacing filly of 2016. Owned by Bendis in partnership with Pollack, Reed Broadway and John Campbell, Wasaga Beach took a mark of 1:53 with seven wins during the Meadows season.
Top honors for sophomore male trotters went to Truemass Volo, owned by Jon Erdner and Martin Garey. Doug Hamilton trains the horse that competed around Pennsylvania in Sire Stake events, winning two of five local appearances with a mark of 1:56.
The top Older Mare Trotter for 2016 was Princess Pablano, owned by Rags To Riches of Pennsylvania, LLC and trained by Tyler Stillings. The mare won 7 of 32 starts with a 1:54.1 mark at The Meadows, earning more than $100,000 locally.
Last but not least, Tamarind, owned and trained by Bill Bercury, earned a unique honor. The trotter captured his second MSOA Older Male Trotter of the Year award, but in non-consecutive seasons. The 2014 award winner reclaimed the title for 2016 as an 8-year-old, winning 7 of 27 local starts with earnings in excess of $125,000.
The MSOA congratulates all of the winners, and looks forward to seeing this year’s champions defend their titles in 2017.