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Walter Case Discusses His Return

Published: October 19, 2017 11:28 am ET

Last Comment: October 23, 2017 11:34 am ET | 2 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

The last time Walter Case Jr. drove in a pari-mutuel horse race was during the fall of 2008. Although he is almost a full decade removed from that comeback, the polarizing pilot has been listed on multiple horses for this coming weekend’s cards of racing.

Aside from the four pari-mutuel programs that Case participated in at Plainridge Racecourse during 2008, he has not steered horses in pari-mutuel races on a regular basis since the summer of 2003.

Case’s driving career came to a halt after an extremely serious domestic assault led to a years-long prison sentence for the now-56-year-old.

Over the course of his career, Case has steered his mounts to over 11,000 wins and in excess of $43-million in purse earnings. He has participated in over 43,000 pari-mutuel races in his career, and his overall UDR is .390. One would have to look back to the 1987 campaign of racing to see a season in which Case’s driving average was anything less than .391.

It is clear that trainers at Scarborough Downs in Maine are interested in retaining Case’s services, as he has been listed on 23 horses for the track’s 11-race Saturday (October 21) program and 19 for the track’s 10-dash Sunday (October 22) card.

Besides his jail term, which was cut short due to good behaviour, Case was notorious during his heyday in the bike, as he accrued a substantial amount of driving infractions relating to urging his mounts to get to the wire first.

Case will drive in all 11 of Scarborough's races this Saturday.

“Maine is my home. It’s where my career started, and I’m looking forward to coming back and competing again,” a humble Case has told Scarborough Downs officials, who conveyed his comments via a press release, the contents of which appear below.

Walter Case Jr. Returns To The Races This Weekend At Scarborough Downs

Walter Case Jr., the legendary harness racing driver and state of Maine native, will return to action at Scarborough Downs on Saturday (October 21), nearly eight years removed from his last start in the sulky. He is listed to drive in all 11 races on the afternoon program which will get underway at 1:30 p.m. (EDT).

The best place to witness Case’s historic return will be live at the track, but the program will also be simulcast through the Maine OTB network and nationally through the wagering platform ‘Day At The Track,’ which is the exclusive provider of the Scarborough Downs live video stream.

Case, the eighth leading driver in the history of the sport with 11,038 career wins, received a provisional driving license from the Maine Harness Racing Commission last week, setting the stage for his return to racing in Maine.

Case, who has not raced anywhere since 2008, was grateful for the opportunity to rekindle his career remarking, “Maine is my home. It’s where my career started, and I’m looking forward to coming back and competing again.”

For the last nine years, Case has lived a relatively quiet life, training horses with his wife in Ohio. His racing career all but ended in 2004 when he was convicted of assault and ended up serving four years in prison. Until now, he had been kept out of the sport by licensing authorities.

“Everyone deserves a second chance,” Case’s attorney, Evan Fisher, said. “The commission’s decision is not only good for Walter, but it’s good for the sport and good for Maine’s harness racing industry.”

Case’s prowess on the track remains vivid in the minds of longtime harness fans, but his return should prove enlightening to younger patrons of the sport who may only be familiar with Case through archives and record books.

“How to explain ‘Casey’ to people who never saw him drive a horse,” mused trainer Adam Gray, “the man could make horses do things that even the horse didn’t know was possible. He got speed out of horses like no other driver could do. The man had a gift, and now we get a chance to see him try to do it all over again. Casey’s return will be a huge boost to harness racing in Maine.”

“We are happy for Walter and pleased that he will be appearing at ‘the Downs’ this weekend,” said Denise Terry, vice president at Scarborough Downs. “He has always been an integral part of the Maine harness racing industry and a generous supporter of this track, and we believe it’s time to allow him his chance at redemption. The reaction to the news of his return has been overwhelmingly positive and we are expecting a big day at the races on Saturday.”

Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing every Saturday and Sunday at 1:30 p.m. throughout the fall season. Closing day for the 2017 meet is scheduled for December 10.

October 23, 2017 - 11:34 amThank you Standardbred Canada

Claude Leger SAID...

Thank you Standardbred Canada for covering this story. I have personally dealt with substance abuse in my family and have seen positive results. The return of a clean/sober Walter Case is a positive story and is good for our sport. Once again THANK YOU!

October 20, 2017 - 8:20 amWelcome back Walter, I've

Welcome back Walter, I've been waiting a long time, it has taking a long time for you to get a second chance at the job you have loved so much for years.There has been times on the Canada Standardbred web site, that I have commented on why you should get a second chance, everybody deserves a second chance, but I did no think it would take this long. WELCOME BACK and GOOD LUCK in the future, I will be watching the races this Saturday if HPI streams them.

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