First Female Race Announcer Ever?

Published: September 22, 2009 07:12 am EDT

When Dawn Lupul steps into the announcer’s booth at Grand River Raceway on Tuesday night, she may be making harness racing history


If there has ever been a female voice call an entire race card, people seem hard-pressed to remember it. Regardless of whether she is indeed the first, or one of a select few, Lupul will call her first 11 races on September 22 at the Elora, ON half-miler.

Lupul began working at Northlands Park as the on-air handicapper for both breeds in 1995. She later became the network show host for both breeds, and played the host and analyst roles for Horse Racing Alberta. After moving to Ontario in 2008, she has worked with the WEG and HPI broadcasting teams.

“I always thought that some day I would try announcing,” she says. “Frank Salive has been encouraging me to try it, and this opportunity came up. I think people will find it very different to hear a female voice in the booth!”

Lupul will substitute for Grand River’s regular Tuesday night announcer, Ken Middleton, who returns to the microphone on September 29.

Post time for Lupul’s announcing debut is 7:05 p.m. this Tuesday night.

(Grand River)



Great job Dawn...My daughter, age 10, suggested that she may be the first female race announcer some day...I guess she will have to be #2...Nice to see and all the best!
Evan Loucks (Kawartha Downs)


I remember the late Sandie Green calling at The Meadows. She did a very good job and is the only one that I can think of that has tried her hand at it.

I believe others have maybe done a single race before.

Best of luck,Dawn! I know that everyone from out here is wishing you nothing but the best.As with anything else, iknow you will do a super job.I will be tuned to the racing channel tonight for sure.

I hope they show video as well as audio!!!!!!! All The Best Dawn.

Dawn has always known her stuff both on and off the track... I'm sure she'll do an awesome job and we're all so looking forward to this. Best wishes from the West!


Enjoy your evening in the booth, Dawn. Once you get in there and call a race, you'll be bitten by the announcing bug! Kudos to Grand River Raceway for making this happen!

I was wondering when a female would step up to the microphone. It was back in the early 1980's that the all male domain of radio and t-v sportscasters was cracked wide open and now female sportscasters are just part of the fabric (I love the banter between Laura Diakin and Greg and Rene on Monday nights.) It takes some time to be accepted. I remember when Theresa Hergert came on board with TSN out of Calgary. Some where not happy at all. Different slant, same subject - back in the 1970's when at the tender age of 15 I took to the booth at Goderich raceway, I was told in no uncertain terms by some patrons that "kids" shouldn't be announcing races. Dawn, I hope you hit a homer tonight and may you be the first of many females put a new stamp on the way races are called.

Go girl go. We do need changes in the way things are done in harness racing and this is a great step on that path. Good luck,have fun and enjoy the experience.

Congratulations Dawn. This is great news and very refreshing. Good luck and I am looking forward to it as I am sure many others are.

Sandie Greene (RIP) called a few cards here and there at the Meadows in the 90s, filling in for Roger Huston, but Dawn may very well be the first in Canada.

Good luck, Dawn, and remember "proper prior preparation prevents poor performance." (Alliterative advice from announcing authority Ken Warkentin)

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