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Pompano Kicks Off 46th Season Saturday

Published: September 17, 2009 3:20 pm ET

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The excitement of a new season and an opening night jam packed with festivities will kick off the 46th season of harness racing at Pompano Park on Saturday, September 19.

"We feel that adding the drivers' meet-and-greet autograph session before the races and a fireworks show after really underscores the enthusiasm for the new season everyone here is feeling," said Pompano Park vice president and general manager Michael Bloom.

First-race post time at Pompano for 2009-2010 is 7:05 p.m. After September programs on the 19th, 25th, and 26th, the track will step up to three cards a week in October and scale up to five programs per week by December.

The drivers' meet-and-greet autograph session on opening night will be conducted trackside from 6:00 p.m. until roughly 6:30 p.m. Pompano's all-time leading driver, Bruce Ranger, will be joined by David Ingraham and Wally Hennessey to sign the postcard pictures of them in racing action. The three marquee reinsman at the track will then be interviewed live on TV by Pompano's new track announcer, Frank Salive, at 6:40 p.m. right after the evening's program changes.

Bloom went on to state that, "the infield has been manicured and our facilities have been shined up to the fullest. The fireworks show on Saturday night after the races is certain to bring over some new people to racing from our casino and it dovetails just great with what were working to accomplish here. There's a real buzz about the return of racing this year all around the property. We're looking forward to an outstanding racing season in 2009-2010 here in South Florida."

The opening night program at Pompano is comprised of 10 races. In addition to the five races in the third leg of the Florida Sunshine Stake Stakes for the two and three-year-old pacing colts and fillies, the $12,000 Open Pace has Armbro Dynamic in Post 1 as the 2-1 morning line choice. Michile Lorenzo trains the six-year-old Western Hanover--Bruces Lady pacer for Souren Hovsepian. Wally Hennessey will do the driving.

Pompano's director of racing operations, John Yinger, has pointed out that the opening program of the new Pompano meet is also the debut card for many new staffers he's hired for his team.

"We've been able to bring back Bob Owens as our paddock judge after he was away from racing for several years," Yinger said. "Michael Hall will be coming in as our presiding judge, and Charlie Miller as our starter. Also joining our team are Tia Shaffer as our outrider and parade marshall, and Jeff Schaffer as our Blacksmith. Our backstretch manager Bill Bigler has completed a refurbishment of the grooms' quarters.

"I also want to note the track surface has undergone extensive work in the lead-up to this meet. Charles E. Coon and Sons have the track surface looking just sensational. All told, we're really excited about this new season and a positive upswing and renewed commitment to live harness racing at The Isle Pompano Park."

(With files from Pompano)


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