Balmoral Park (1/4/10)
Contact: Tom Kelley
OOSTING TOPS DRIVER STANDINGS WHILE HOCHSTETLER WINS FIRST TRAINING TITLE
The 2009 racing season has come to a close with a familiar result in the driver standings as Mike Oosting toted home his fifth Balmoral Park driving championship while veteran conditioner Homer Hochstetler grabbed the honors as top conditioner at the Crete oval.
|Mike Oosting toted home top honors among the driving colony at Balmoral Park for the fifth time in his career.|
The 47-year-old Oosting added yet another trophy to his mantle, despite missing six weeks of the 2009 season with a broken shoulder which occurred at Maywood Park in early July. Despite initial reports that he would be out for up to three to four months, Oosting managed to climb back into the sulky before Super Night.
Trailing eventual runner-up Tyler Buter and third place finisher Brandon Simpson by more than 30 victories, Oosting went on a late season roll which was capped off by a seven-win night on Saturday, Dec. 26.
For the year at Balmoral Park, the Beecher, Illinois resident climbed into the bike 1,155 times. From those starts he posted 219 victories, 179 seconds and 155 third place finishes for an 18.96 percent win percentage. Oosting-driven horses banked $1,238,928 in earnings at Balmoral Park. That win percentage was more than 5 percent higher than his nearest competitors. Buter wound up second in the standings with 192 wins while Simpson was third with 179 trips to the charmed circle.
On the training side of the docket, veteran conditioner Homer Hochstetler was a very busy man once again and the heavy workload paid off as he came out atop the Balmoral Park trainer standings with 79 wins, 71 seconds and 64 thirds from 536 starters. Horses trained by the 59-year-old Hochstetler earned $767,477 at the Crete plant. Last year’s winner Perry Smith finished second with 72 wins while Nelson Willis was third with 68 victories. Erv Miller trainees led the way in purse earnings with $843,507 in purses from just 258 starts.
|Trainer Homer Hochstetler, joined by his son Jay and wife Connie, accepts his 2009 training award from Balmoral Park General Manager-Simulcast Director Jim Hannon.|
Balmoral Park will now be on a three week hiatus from live racing. The track, which is open for simulcast wagering day and night, will get back to live racing on Wednesday, January 28. Balmoral will then conduct live racing on Wednesdays and Saturdays (post time 7:20 pm central) and on Sundays at 6:30 pm (central) throughout the remainder of 2010.