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MEADOWLANDS - Post Time 7:15pm
January 26 - March 11, 2017
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January 5 - March 25, 2017
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December 28 - December 30, 2017
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GINGRAS REACHES 6,000 WINS

-- Ken Weingartner/Harness Racing Communications/USTA

MANALAPAN, NJ -- June 27, 2016 -- In many cases, winning seven harness races in a row would be the most notable achievement of any driverís day. But for Yannick Gingras, such a streak got him to an even more noteworthy accomplishment --- career victory No. 6,000.

On Sunday, the 36-year-old Gingras won his final four drives at Harrahís Philadelphia before heading north to The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, where he had three drives in Pennsylvania All-Stars action. Gingras won all three, finishing the day with 6,000 lifetime triumphs.

Gingras notched his milestone win with Ron Burke-trained 2-year-old male pacer Normandy Beach in the seventh race at Pocono.

ďThatís just neat that it worked out that way,Ē Gingras said. ďSomeone mentioned to me yesterday that I was getting close, but I wasnít sure how close I was.

ďAt this stage, itís a good number --- itís always nice to get these milestones --- but at this point we race so many horses they come quite often, honestly. But itís definitely nice. Iím sure itís something that later on it will be nice to talk about these numbers. Hopefully, Iíll have made it higher than 6,000.Ē

Gingras was harness racingís Driver of the Year in 2014 and has led the sport in purses each of the past two seasons. This year, Gingras has won 164 races and $3.12 million, which ranks fifth in North America.

His top wins this season include the Pennsylvania Classic with Check Six, Roses Are Red with Lady Shadow, Armbro Flight with Hannelore Hanover, Confederation Cup with Rockin Ron, New Jersey Sire Stakes championship with Southwind Frank, and a Group 2 race in Sweden with Pinkman.

Other stars driven by Gingras during his career include Foiled Again, Mission Brief, Father Patrick, JK Sheísalady, Maven, Pastor Stephen, and Darlinís Delight.

This weekend, Gingras will turn his attention to Poconoís Sun Stakes Saturday card, where his drives include Southwind Frank in the $500,000 Earl Beal Jr. Memorial. Southwind Frank, last yearís Dan Patch Award winner for best 2-year-old male trotter, saw a 12-race win streak halted by Bar Hopping last Saturday in their Beal elimination. Bar Hopping won by a neck in 1:52.1.

ďHeís good,Ē Gingras said about Southwind Frank, who has won 13 of 15 career races and is the early Hambletonian Stakes favorite. ďHe wasnít a hundred percent on Saturday. Thatís pretty scary to get beat a neck when heís not at his best. I think heíll be ready to rock on Saturday night.Ē

Gingras also is anticipating the $500,000 Ben Franklin, where older male pacing stars Always B Miki, Freaky Feet Pete, and Wiggle It Jiggleit all head to the final off impressive elimination victories.

ďThatís going to be an unbelievable race,Ē said Gingras, who is listed on Burke trainees Rock Ní Roll World and Always At My Place. ďIím looking forward to, not only being a part of it, but seeing who is the king of the division now. I hope itís everything we hope itís going to be.

ďThere will be a lot of good racing there at Pocono on Saturday night. I have some good ones, so Iím definitely looking forward to it.Ē


Photo by Ken Weingartner


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