Yonkers, NY --- Yonkers Raceway begins its 2013 season Friday night (Jan. 11), with a dozen-race dossier commencing customarily at 7:10 p.m.
A pair of $35,000 co-features -- a Filly and Mare Open Pace (sixth race) and an Open Handicap Trot (eighth race) -- highlight the opener.
Yonkers again offers the highest purse structure and deepest driving colony in the sport, led by defending local champ George Brennan. Brennan’s Westchester resume a season ago included 580 wins, a staggering 25.5 win percentage and more than $8.8 million in purses.
Brennan, who repeated as Harness Tracks of America Driver of the Year in 2012, is joined on the overnight sheet -- and on the gate -- by the likes of Jason Bartlett (322 Yonkers wins), Brian Sears (248), Jordan Stratton (221), Larry Stalbaum (209), Brent Holland (195), Eric Goodell (134), Cat Manzi (128), Mark MacDonald (125), Jim Pantaleano (80), Patrick Lachance (55), Jeff Gregory (45) and Pocono-based Matt Kakaley, who figures be an early-season regular.
All told, 11 of Yonkers' 12 leading drivers from a season ago are listed to go Friday, as are the first five -- Gilberto Garcia-Herrera (125 Yonkers wins), PJ Fraley (119), Ron Burke (109), Mark Ford (99) and Casie Coleman (82) -- from the 2012 trainer standings.
The 2013 stakes schedule shall be announced shortly.
After the programs of this Friday and Saturday, the Raceway returns to its customary Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday schedule, with first post at 7:10 p.m. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available around the NYRA schedule.