Monticello, NY --- First it was “Irish” Joe Hanney who consented to drive in Monticello Raceway’s 13th annual St. Paddy Pace. Now Anthony Haughan, another full-blooded native Irishman, will join his friend and fellow countryman on Wednesday (March 13) and participate in the race exclusively for drivers of Irish descent.
“We’ve always had plenty of Irish-Americans, or at least many drivers with some degree of Irish in their heritage in our St. Paddy Pace, but this year we will have, not just one, but two real ‘Irishmen’ participating,” noted Eric Warner, the track's director of racing.
“Like “Irish” Joe, Anthony Haughan is also from Dublin (Ireland) and they are good friends and it was Joe who helped us recruit Anthony Haughan for our race.”
Together, both Haughan and Hanney traveled from Ireland to North America and initially they settled in Canada, but unlike “Irish” Joe, Haughan has stayed north of the border where he is well-liked and has been racing with good success.
Haughan’s first North American pari-mutuel start was at Flamboro Downs in 1999 and over the succeeding seasons racing at Flamboro, Western Fair, Georgian Downs, Grand River Raceway and occasionally at Mohawk Raceway, as well as some of the smaller raceways in Ontario, Haughan has thus far amassed a total of 900 driving victories with his biggest seasonal output (154 wins) coming during the 2010 season.
“He’s my second favorite Irishman, just a nose behind Bono,” mused Kelly Spencer, the talented marketing director at Grand River Raceway where Haughan competes on a regular basis. “He’s passionate about the sport and is an excellent driver. Anthony will do anything asked of him. He’s a great ambassador for the sport.”