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Saratoga Gearing Up For Gerrity Pace

Published: July 19, 2016 3:00 pm ET

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Saratoga Casino Hotel is set to welcome some of America’s finest Standardbred performers for the eighth annual Joe Gerrity Jr. Memorial Free for All Pace on Saturday (July 23).

This year’s memorial pace boasts a $260,000 purse, and more than $500,000 in total purses will be offered throughout the course of the evening. First-race post time is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

While the pace always attracts some of the top older Standardbreds in the country, this year’s list of eligibles offers a particularly high level of racing talent. The 2015 U.S. Harness Horse of the Year, Wiggle It Jiggleit, will be among the favourites in the Gerrity Memorial Pace. The four-year old pacer has amassed more than $2.8 million in lifetime winnings during his career. Also featured in this year’s pace is 2015 champion P H Supercam, who posted an impressive 1.50.1 finish in last year’s Gerrity Memorial Pace.

Racing fans in attendance will receive a coupon for a free commemorative 2016 Gerrity Night t-shirt with the purchase of a $2 race program, while supplies last. Free Stewart’s Ice Cream cones will also be given out to the first 500 guests in attendance beginning at 6:30 p.m. courtesy of The Agriculture & New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. Additionally, 75-cent deals on hot dogs and sodas will be offered throughout the evening’s racing card to commemorate the track’s 75th year of racing.

Sam Grossman, AKA ‘Sam The Bugler’ will also be present, calling the horses to post during the evening’s race card.

“We’re especially excited about the field in this year’s edition of our signature race,” said John Matarazzo, director of racing operations at Saratoga Casino Hotel. “It’s only right that we raise the calibre of featured talent in the Gerrity Memorial as we also continue to celebrate our 75th year of Saratoga Harness.”

The Memorial Pace was created in 2009 as a pacing series honouring the memory of Joe Gerrity Jr. and his many contributions. A highly respected leader, inspiration and an icon for Saratoga Raceway and the horse racing industry, he was a breeder of horses in Loudonville, a licensed harness driver and became Chairman of the Board of Saratoga Harness Racing, Inc. (now Saratoga Casino Hotel) on April 1, 1987.

Gerrity later oversaw the expansion of the facility and the installation of video gaming machines, funding the project in part himself. He also served as a director for the Harness Horse Breeders of New York State for 20 years, and also acted as treasurer for much of that time. Gerrity passed away in October 2005.

(Saratoga Casino Hotel)

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