Off to the Races!
Harness Racing at Red Shores Summerside
Photo courtesy of Red Shores
For the uninitiated, harness racing is a form of horse racing in which the horses race at a specific gait (a trot or a pace). They pull a two-wheeled cart called a sulky, occupied by a licensed professional or amateur driver. It is a serious investment to become a top harness racing driver, and or a trainer, of standardbred horses. After years of being involved around standardbred horses and learning to jog and train, a person (male or female) can write the test to become licensed.
Harness Racing is for you if you enjoy the thrill of sports and entertainment.
With every race, the excitement begins as soon as the horses line up behind the starting gate (the car that horses go behind to begin the race) and builds to a heart pounding force as you witness the high speed intensity of the horses on the track. It’s a given that you’ll pick a favorite horse and driver to cheer on. There is no better feel than the thrill and excitement as you watch your horse come roaring from the back of the pack to win the race! You don't need to know anything about harness racing to come out and enjoy the excitement! But, by the time you leave we will have taught you plenty about the sport.
Not sure how to read a race card? Then plan to attend Harness Racing 101 where you will be taught just that along with how to bet, and you will get to meet the stars of the track, the horses and drivers.
When it comes to placing a wager you must be nineteen years old or older. You can wager as little as $2 on a race or as much as you wish. If you wager $2 on a horse to Win, it means that horse must win to cash your ticket. If you wager $2 to Place, that means your horse has to finish first or second in order to cash your ticket. If you wager $2 to Show, then your horse can finish first, second or third and you can cash your ticket. These wagers are explained in more detail at the race track. ATM onsite.
Image courtesy of Rocky Schurman
Clifford Chappell in the winner’s circle at Summerside Raceway in 1970
Lobster Carnival Race Week begins on Sunday, July 7th,
while all other Carnival activities begin on Thursday, July 11th.
Sunday July 7th:
7 pm: Post Time. Governor's Plate Eliminations: sponsored by Township Chevrolet Buick GMC and Noonan Petroleum. The prestigious Governor’s Plate will be the final race of the evening on Saturday, July 13th featuring the top horses in the Maritimes.
Open Mares Eliminations: Featuring the best aged pacing mares in Atlantic Canada.
Monday, July 8th
No Races, but all facilities at Red Shores open.
Tuesday, July 9th
7 pm: Post Time. Harness Racing at the Track: Featuring the 2 and 3 year old trotters in Atlantic Sires Stakes action.
Wednesday, July 10th
7 pm: Post Time. Harness Racing at the Track: Featuring the 2 year old pacing fillies in Atlantic Sires Stakes action.
Thursday, July 11th
6:15 pm: Harness Racing 101: Learn the Basics of Harness Racing. Meet the Stars – Drivers and Horses. Presented by Prince County Horsemens Club. (Look for the signs)
7 pm: Post Time. Harness Racing at the Track. Showcasing the best 2 year old pacing colts in the Maritimes in the Atlantic Sires Stakes.
8 pm: Seafood Night at the Track: Sponsored by Red Shores, Tyne Valley Oyster Festival, and Prince Edward Aqua Farms Inc. Free sampling while quantities last.
Friday, July 12th
6:15 pm: Harness Racing 101: Learn the Basics of Harness Racing. Meet the Stars – Drivers and Horses. Presented by Prince County Horsemens Club. Look for the signs.
7 pm: Post Time: Harness Racing at the Track. Featuring more Atlantic Sires Stakes with the 3 year old pacing fillies in action.
9:30 pm: Complimentary Kitchen Party at Red Shores.
Saturday, July 13th
8 - 10 am: Horsemen's Breakfast for Horsemen and Guests only.
5:45 pm: Harness Racing 101: Learn the Basics of Harness Racing. Meet the Stars – Drivers and Horses. Presented by Prince County Horsemen's Club. Look for the signs.
6:30 pm: Post Time: Harness Racing at the Track featuring the 51st running of the Governor’s Plate with an estimated purse of $25,000.00. Sponsored by Township Chevrolet Buick GMC and Noonan Petroleum.
Racing evening starts with Atlantic Sires Stakes for 3 year old pacing colts, and the Open Mares Final.