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Want To Be In The Winner's Circle?

Published: July 8, 2011 2:10 pm ET

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Have you dreamed of owning a racehorse? Hoisting a glittering trophy in the winner’s circle, surrounded by friends and family? Your dream could come true, simply by submitting a ballot in the Ontario Sires Stakes' 'Win The Thrill' contest at your local harness racetrack.

While taking in outstanding OSS Grassroots or Gold final action at Clinton Raceway, Flamboro Downs, Georgian Downs, Grand River Raceway, Hanover Raceway or Hiawatha Horse Park this summer, fans have an opportunity to fill out a ballot which could eventually lead them to a share in the Standardbred Breeders of Ontario Association (SBOA) New Owner Mentoring program.

Under the guidance of trainer Tony O’Sullivan of Cambridge and owner-mentor Brian Webster of St. George Brant, the Win The Thrill Grand Prize winner will be part of a group which purchases an Ontario-sired yearling from one of the fall sales. With any luck the young trotter or pacer will go on to the kind of success enjoyed by 2008 selection, Grin For Money, who has earned $268,852 in his career to date.

Win The Thrill is intended to introduce and mentor newcomers to the sport of harness racing, like Wingham resident Betty Ross, who was part of the Grin For Money New Owner Mentoring Group and highly recommends the experience.

“There isn’t anybody that just can’t enjoy the whole experience of learning more about racing. It’s just been a wonderful thing,” said Ross, who, along with her husband, Jim, now owns shares in 11 horses. “We jumped in with two feet and it’s just been all positive.”

To take the first step toward realizing the dream of standardbred ownership, fans can fill out a ballot at their local racetrack during the following Ontario Sires Stakes events:

Clinton Raceway — July 24, August 21 and September 4
Flamboro Downs — July 10 & 27, August 14, September 9, 14, 16 & 30
Georgian Downs — July 9, 12 & 30, August 9 &13, September 6, 13 & 17
Grand River Raceway — July 11, Aug 3 & 24, September 2, 14, 26, 28 & 30
Hanover Raceway — July 9, August 6 and September 3
Hiawatha Horse Park — August 13 and September 15

Before the designated Win The Thrill contest race, fans will place their ballot in the box marked with the post position number of the horse they believe will win. Prior to the race, one fan’s ballot will be drawn from each box and that fan becomes a finalist. Finalists will receive an Ontario Sires Stakes hat and a betting voucher, and will split a $100 'purse' in the form of a betting voucher based on their horse’s order of finish (first through fifth). The winner will also receive a trophy and, where possible, a winner’s circle photo.

All finalists, regardless of where their assigned horse finished, will be eligible for the Grand Prize if they attend, register and submit a ballot at the Grassroots finals being held at Mohawk Racetrack on October 1, 2011. That night a similar process will be used to determine the Grand Prize winner and two runner-ups.

Full contest details are available at participating tracks and online at and


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