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Horse slaughter in Illinois
Illinois County Fairs
Contact: Timothy M. Jones for the Brown County Fair
2007 BROWN COUNTY FAIR TASER GUN PACE
Who will be first to cross the finish line in the 2007 edition of the Brown County Fair’s Taser Gun pace? Past performers in the $18,000 race have been renown in Illinois harness racing history. The 2006 race was captured by none other than World Champion, and 2005 Illinois Horse of the Year, Loyal Opposition.
The great mare, who has since been retired to the breeding shed, took the lead as the seven-horse field neared the 3/8th pole, then was never headed in the 1:56.1-timed mile. The race provided a rare opportunity for fairgoers to witness not only arguably the greatest mare in Illinois harness racing history, but also one of the greatest in North America.
Prior to 2006, the race had been won by either Constant Change or the race’s namesake, Taser Gun, respectively.
The former, a Cole Muffler gelding and stalwart on the Chicago racing circuit, is owned by Hunt Harness Horses of Big Rock, IL; Helen Logan of Coffeyville, KS; and Benita Simmons of Springfield, IL. Trained by Benita’s husband Tom, Constant Change has earned nearly $600,000 lifetime and owns a race mark of 1:49.4. The tall bay has already committed to this year’s race and will attempt to capture his third title.
Taser Gun also returns, but this time as the guest of honor. The Henry Letsgo gelding was officially retired on June 19, 2007 in a ceremony at the Greene County Fair in Carrollton, Illinois. His numerous accomplishments will again be celebrated in a ceremony before the Brown County fair’s grandstand Thursday evening, August 2.
Owned by brothers Bob and Tom Cunningham that form the partnership of Cunningham Racing, Inc. of Medora, IL, and trained by Carrollton’s Bob Walker, Taser Gun retired from his career with a lifetime mark of 1:49.2 and nearly $1.2 million in purse earnings. His back-to-back sub 1:50 race miles in August of 1999 at the Illinois Sate Fair set, at the time, a World Record for fastest races recorded in a seven-day period. The 1:53.4 Brown County fair track record set in 2002 by “Taser” is noted as the fastest mile over a county fair racing surface in Illinois harness racing history.
His career spanned nearly a decade, and in 147 starts he entered the winners circle 69 times, winning at a remarkable rate of nearly 50 percent. In 48 other races he finished either second or third. With statistics as such, he was honored as a living inductee to the Illinois Harness Hall of Fame in 2005.
He joins Constant Change as winner of Chicago circuit stakes such as The Cook County, and The Associates, both hosted by Maywood Park. Both horses have also earned crowns as Illinois State Fair Aged Pace champions.
Previous winners of the Mid-Western Illinois Racing Association Fair’s Aged pace include:
YEAR – HORSE – DRIVER – TRAINER
Who will enter the winners circle to be crowned 2007 Taser Gun Pace champion is anyone’s guess. But from past history and the great horses that have circled the Mt. Sterling half-mile oval, there is no next best thing to being there.
Post times for the August 1 and 2 evening cards are 7 pm
The 72-hour entry box closes at 10 am prior to each race day. For more information, please contact Speed Superintendent Ed Teefey’s race office at 217-773-3930.
Mt. Sterling, Illinois is located 65 miles west of Springfield, Illinois on US 24. For more information, please visit the Fair’s web site at http://www.browncofair.com, or call the fair office at (217) 773-3939.
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