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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Remembering Silk Stockings

One of my favorite horses in the beginning of my association with harness racing was Silk Stockings who was trained and driven by Preston Burris Jr.  One of the things I  remember is the owners of Silk Stockings were operators of a school for Autistic children in Delaware and every victory brought excitement to the students at the Delaware school.

Silk Stockings trained and driven by Preston Burris Jr.  Photo credit: Bruce Johnson
But Silk Stockings was more than a mascot to the children at Au Clair, she was part of a magical 1975 season, a season which found her to the be the fastest 3 yo of both sexes and gaits and at the time was the richest seasonal winner of all gaits with winnings in excess of $336,999.

During that magical season, Silk Stockings won 15 of 24 starts including a 12 race winning streak, winning up and down the Northeast corridor being based out of Brandywine Raceway.  The daughter of Most Happy Fella raced successfully both on the NYSS circuit and against open company but her most important wins of the season may have been the NYC OTB Classic where the filly took on and beat the boys at Monticello Raceway where she beat the ill-fated Tarport Hap and was the winner of the Jugette in straight heats.  Another big win was in the Betsy Ross at Brandywine.

Lifetime, the champion mare was a winner of 30 out of 57 starts with lifetime winnings of $694,894 and a lifetime mark of 1:55.2 at the Meadowlands at the age of 3.  Watching her race was a treat.

By the time Silk Stockings died at the age of 31, she had given birth to ten horses, her best one likely being the first foal, the very good horse Temujin (1:54.3;$633,824).

For a more complete history on Silk Stockings start year, you can check out this web posting..

Trivia Fans, here is a new tidbit for you.  The winner of the first wagering race at Miami Valley Racing is Lookout Macatoo, driven by reinsman Randy Tharps who won the first race in 1:55,1  Unlike the original opening night, this evening went off without the drama of the first night when racing was cancelled due to power fluctuations from Duke Energy.

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