Young Turk and Gene Rieglehttp://www
from Oct 6, 1971 Harness Horse and Lexington
Hoot Speed, Castleton Farm's top trotter, produced the second fastest trotting mile of the year in winning the Transylvania in 1:573/5, winding up the day's events in fine style, besting the Gene Riegle driven, Another Love, two and one-half lengths. Gene had his party earlier in the proceedings when he piloted the 3-year-old Widower Creed colt, Young Turk, which he co-owns with the Little Six Stable, to a new lifetime record of 1:574/5.
from Dec 9, 1959 Harness Horse:
THE GENE RIEGLE STABLE
UNTIL SHELVED by a leg Injury in the $68,032.84 American-National Maturity Trot at Sportsman's Park, the handsome chestnut trotter Mr. Saunders 3, 2:012/5 was fulfilling the promise of his two- and three-year-old form in the Three Way Stable, which is trained by Gene Riegle.
The talented young Greenville, Ohio, teamster opened the season with the blaze-faced son of Florican at Hazel Park. There in a span of two weeks the four-year-old stallion riddled the ranks of the fast-class trotters in three consecutive $4,000 events, his early season miles of 2:05, 2:05 and 2:033/5 thoroughly discouraging the likes of Darneau, Gladys Volo, Rasmatz, etc.
Heartened by three such impressive tune-ups the Three Way Stable shipped to Yonkers, N. Y., for the rich Gotham Trot and a try at the winner's end of its $43,500 purse.
Parading to the gate with the Ohio invader that evening were 11 of trotting's finest, including Trader Horn, Steamin' Demon, Newport Star and Rich Colby. Mr. Saunders, rushing out of the gate for Riegle, grabbed the race track at the start and stepped off a :301/5 quarter, closely followed by Two Gaits entry of Rich Colby and Sandalwood. In front of the Yonkers grandstand the first time Lumber Along, handled by Johnny Simpson, ranged up for the lead, but had to give way shortly thereafter when the midwesterner swarmed back to the front at the three-quarters. In the stretch Trader Horn tried for Billy Haughton and trotted to within a half-length of Mr. Saunders at the wire.
In winning his fourth straight of the season Mr. Saunders set a season's record of 2:02 and erased Galophone's 2:022/5 tab for four-year-old trotters from Yonkers' track record book.
Before being sidelined Mr. Saunders added another victory, a second and a third to his card and earned $42,276. The stallion, purchased by the Three Way Stable for $2,700, has now won $90,736.
His stablemates under the same ownership included Rusty M. p, 2:034/5h, winner during the Suburban Downs meeting, and Rickie Volo 2:09, a Hazel Park winner.
One of the larger sections in Gene's stable this year was a division of the Poplar Hill Farm Stable, owned by Mr. and Mrs. R. C. Larkin. Of these Riegle gave Rocket Byrd his 1:583/5 tab against the fence at Du Quoin and he campaigned Aquiline Byrd which this fall paced in 1:592/5 for Johnny Simpson, also in a time trial.
Rocket Byrd, a bay brother to 3 in 2:05 as he is by Poplar Byrd out of Marion Direct, visited the winner's circle on six occasions, most of his wins coming in features at the Chicago tracks. He was also second four times and third four times in, winning some $7,500 this year.
Aquiline Byrd, a full sister to Quilla Byrd p, 3, 1:593/5h, also acquitted herself as well against competition as she did in -her bouts with the watch. Her top effort of the season for Riegle came at Springfield where she took the $12,200 Illinois State Fair Colt Stake for three-year-old pacing fillies in straight heats of 2:033/5 and 2:023/5.
The Poplar Hill Farm string also in-cluded the heat winners in Springfield's big colt stakes, Evalina Byrd p, 2, 2:09h (second to Countess Adios in 2:013 3/5 at Du Quoin), Abbe Dell p, 3, 2:053/5; the three-time winner Lou Byrd p, 2, 2:09, and Calvin Byrd, which Gene marked in 2:063/5 at Du Quoin.
One of the major events during Grand Circuit at Hazel Park, the $7,850 Sep Palin, fell to the Peter Romona Hal colt Golden Lind, which Gene brought from
far back for an upset score in 2:083/5 over Merrie Amos. In this and later action the colt won close to $5,000 for owner F. C. Staley of Anderson, Ind.
Another of his top performers in 1959 was My Tomboy, winner of five events and more than $5,000. Owned by Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Carlock, Greenville, Ohio, the Thomas B. Scott-Elaine fouryear-old mare took her record of 2:043/5 for Riegle in nosing out the tough Hardy Royal.
The seven-year-old mare Betty Steward also took a tab of 2:043/5 with Riegle in the sulky. The score was one of several at Hazel Park and Chicago for her owner Frank Boaz, Anderson, Ind., for whom Gene also raced Adeyscot 2:09, a winner this year.
Other Riegle winners during the Hazel Park meeting were Mr. and Mrs. Sopusek's Model 2:051/5, which was also third one heat of the Historic-Dickerson Cup, and Lynn Wick p, 2, 2:082/5h, owned by Dr. L. C. Rees of Millersville, Pa.
The $43,500 Gotham Trot at Yonkers falls to Three Way Stable's Mr. Saunders as Gene Riegle gets the Florican chestnut to the wire in 2:02, a half-length in front of Trader Horn (8-Haughton).
Gene Riegle wins an overnight at Lexington in 2:011/5 with Mr. and Mrs. R. C. Larkin's Rocket Byrd, which Gene sent against the fence earlier in the season in 1:583/5.
From March 2, 1955 Harness Horse and Chatham, NY:
The remainder of the horses are owned by local sportsmen who train in their spare time and include James Scott, Forest Ellis, Ken Heeny, William Craft and Caroll Rehder.
from 1974 USTA Handbook
HEENEY, Kenneth W. BIRTHPLACE: Albany, N.Y.
Saratoga Springs, N.Y. BIRTHDATE: 10-17-34
A star athlete at Valatie (N.Y.) High, from which he graduated in 1953, Ken Heeney needed little time to become established as a driver in the harness racing sport. Senior Class President, baseball captain, N.Y.
Sectionals 100 and 200 yd. winner two consecutive years, and member of undefeated soccer team, Heeney followed high school with a year at
Trinity College, and three in the service, serving in Korea.
Married the former Brenda Waldorf, of Hudson, N.Y., in 1956, and has three children. Following discharge from service he started in the sport as a groom, for Nick Laria, and drove his first race at Hinsdale, N.H. in 1958. Won first parimutuel race in 1960, and for next three years drove only limited number of times each season. Starting with 1964 season rapidly picked up winning ways and has posted eight 100-plus seasons already.
Escaped injury in spectacular 5-horse spill at Saratoga in which Pete Daily received numerous injuries.
Ken is always among top dash winners at Monticello, and in 1972 passed 1,000 win mark.
Year Starts 1sts 2nds 3rds UDRS Money Won
1960 37 5 6 3 .252 2,122
1961 35 4 5 .194 1,920
1962 72 9 9 8 .231 6,537
1963 162 18 16 14 .195 10,142
1964 287 47 45 37 .294 33,680
1965 608 103 86 75 .289 68,164
1966 817 133 106 113 .281 102,178
1967 919 128 145 16S .287 129,642
1968 612 80 76 93 .250 111,608
1969 726 132 95 84 .293 135,859
1970 894 170 142 120 .323 198,506
1971 878 128 99 118 .253 142,783
1972 754 118 96 95 .269 177,728
1973 802 154 108 99 .308 229 800
2:00 Miles (1)
1974 USTA Handbook
COKE, Wesley BIRTHPLACE: Petrolia, Ont.
Scarboro, Ont. BIRTHDATE: 7-16-43
The western Ontario town of Petrolia is noted for it's oil industry and a young harness horseman named Wesley Coke. The 30-year-old Coke first gained prominence in 1963 when, at the age of 21, he was the leading dash winner in Canada with 79 victories (he also won 2 races in U.S.). Since then he has scored more than 1,000 victories and his horses have earned $1-million plus.
Coke's driving career began at Connaught Park in 1960. His father, Cecil Coke was set down and not allowed to drive for six days. A horse of his entered to race drew in from among the "also eligibles" and with father Coke sitting out his suspension, son Wes was elected to drive Dr. G. Chief, a nonwinner at that particular meeting. Wes piloted the longshot to a second place finish and afterwards guided him to three straight victories.
Wes got his "horse education" from his father, and the two have formed a partnership. While Wes handles the racing stock, his father remains at London breaking young horses and readying new stock for the races. Wes says, Prima Pick was the horse that has done the most for me". In 1973 Wes "catch-drove" the great trotter Flower Child to victory in the Ft. George trot at Greenwood.
Year Starts 1sts2nds 3rds UDRS Money Won
(a) 69 --- --- --- ---
1963 --- 81 --- --- -- 31,499
1964 492 95 86 58 .329 58,289
1965 468 78 76 66 .304 69.858
1966 638 110 84 91 .292 106,550
1967 534 88 88 73 .302 84,482
1968 664 116 124 93 .325 150,146
1969 646 109 91 95 .296 156,972
1970 643 83 109 85 .267 146,116
1971 685 71 89 77 .213 143,152
1972 827 93 124 113 .241 210,732
1973 943 102 150 104 .233 277 570
(a) wins recorded prior to 1963