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Numbers Up At Miami Valley

Published: May 10, 2016 10:29 pm ET

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Miami Valley Raceway experienced significant growth in every measurable category as its 2016 race meet concluded on May 8.

Overall handle rose 40% in 2016 as record handle of $22,408,722 was wagered on Miami Valley Raceway throughout the short season.

"We couldn’t be happier with the response received locally and throughout North America," stated Racing Operations Manager Helen Carlo. "The team has already begun planning for 2017 to insure Miami Valley Raceway's product continues to improve .”

Overall purses paid grew to a record level of $10.2 million, up from approximately $7.9 million in 2015. "Miami Valley's racing program elevated to a higher level for the third straight season in 2016," explained Race Secretary Gregg Keidel. "While we enjoyed 30% higher average nightly purses in 2016, purses at Miami Valley will very likely be on the rise again next season.”

Another indication of the strength of the Miami Valley program was the record number of claims that transpired in 2016. A total of 303 horses changed hands via the claim box for a total of $3,204,600, an average of $10,576 per horse. In 2015, the comparative numbers were 247 claims for $2,122,245, an average of $8,592 per transaction.

Track speed records were broken on both the pace and trot. Our Dragon King completed the fastest Miami Valley mile ever when he paced in 1:49.3 for driver Josh Sutton and trainer Tyler George on April 23. Ladys Dude lowered the all-age trotting record to 1:52.1 on April 17 for driver Chris Page and trainer Ron Burke.

The leading driver for the boutique meet was Josh Sutton, who defended his 2015 title with 174 victories accounting for purse earnings of $1,380,486. Rounding out the Top 10 were Chris Page 148, Jeremy Smith 113, Kayne Kauffman 109, Dan Noble and Tyler Smith 78 each, Trace Tetrick 66, Randy Tharps 61, John DeLong 57 and Kyle Ater 52.

Jeff Brewer won the training title with 37 triumphs and $311,255 in purse earnings. He was followed by Virgil Morgan, Jr. 33, Jeff Nisonger and Tyler George 32 each, Chris Short 28, Jim Arledge, Jr., Kayne Kauffman and Charles Stewart all with 25, and Dan Ater, Bill Dailey and Don Eash, each with 20.

An amazing total of 431 different trainers made at least one start in 2016 as horse owners and trainers flocked to Miami Valley to see what the excitement in southwest Ohio was all about. Of that total, 33 conditioners won 10 or more races with 27 of those earning over $100,000 from their stables.

Miami Valley Raceway wishes to thank the talented and enthusiastic group of horsemen—owners, trainers, drivers and caretakers--who worked and competed so very hard from January 9 through May 8. Miami Valley also thanks its dedicated racing team of employees for their tireless effort and commitment to elevating Miami Valley into a higher class of harness racing.

(Miami Valley Raceway)

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