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Top-Earning Four-Year-Old Returns

Published: April 7, 2016 9:09 am ET

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“He had a great season last year. We were thrilled with him. It was impressive that at (age) four he was able to compete against the best horses in the country."

Alan Katz would like to have a stable filled with horses like JK Endofanera.

Of course, he is thrilled to own the one horse who actually is JK Endofanera.

A winner of $2.12 million in lifetime purses, the five-year-old JK Endofanera will begin his 2016 campaign Saturday night in the $25,000 Open Handicap at the Meadowlands Racetrack. JK Endofanera will start from post seven in a seven-horse field, with John Campbell driving for trainer Jimmy Takter.

Last year, JK Endofanera won six of 18 races and hit the board a total of 13 times. His victories included the Dan Patch Invitational and Allerage Farms Open Pace and he finished second in the Breeders Crown and Hoosier Park Pacing Derby. His $601,926 in purses led all four-year-old pacers and ranked thirdamong all older male pacers in North America (behind State Treasurer and Mach It So).

For his career, JK Endofanera has won 20 of 45 races and finished among the top three a total of 37 times. Among his other notable victories are the 2014 North America Cup and 2013 Governor’s Cup.

“I wish I had more like him; he’s had a great career,” said Katz, who owns JK Endofanera with brothers Ron and Steve under the nom de course 3 Brothers Stables.

“We’re looking forward to having a nice campaign. Hopefully he’ll stay sound and show up. I’m sure he’ll never embarrass himself.”

The 3 Brothers Stable bred JK Endofanera, who is a son of stallion Art Major out of the mare Presidential Lady. JK Endofanera is the older brother of 2014 Horse of the Year JK Shesalady (who Katz said is in foal to Western Ideal) and the younger brother of New York state-bred stakes-winner JK Fine Art.

All of the 3 Brothers Stables’ horses are named with the initials JK in memory of late family patriarch Jack Katz. JK Endofanera was named to honour Jack Katz as well as veterinarian Dr. Stephen P. Dey II, who passed away the day the horse was foaled at the Dey family’s Heritage Hill Farm.

“It was the end of an era,” Katz said.

During this winter’s offseason, JK Endofanera enjoyed frequent visits at Takter’s New Jersey farm from Ron Katz. He also enjoyed frequent treats.

“Ronnie and his wife Mardi were feeding him carrots, apples, cinnamon Danish; the horse eats pretty good,” Katz said, laughing. “He doesn’t miss too many meals. The groom even enjoys when they come and gets fed.”

JK Endofanera heads to Saturday’s Open Handicap off a 1:51.4 win in a qualifier at the Big M on April 2. It was Campbell’s first time behind the pacer.

“You can’t go wrong with John Campbell,” Katz said about the Hall of Fame driver, who entered Wednesday less than $4.16 million from extending his all-time record for career purse earnings to $300 million (US). “He’s the Wayne Gretzky of harness racing. He’s accomplished everything there is in his lifetime.”

Joining JK Endofanera in Saturday’s field are Fool Me Once, McArdles Lightning, Dovuto Hanover, Bushwacker, Art History, and Always At My Place.

“It’s a long year and you take it week by week,” Katz said. “It’s hard to come back year in and year out. I wish I had a barn full of JK Endofaneras. For us it’s extra enjoyable with him being a homebred. We’ve been in the business since 1977 and I know he’s the best horse we ever had.”


This story courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, visit www.ustrotting.com.


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