King Johnny Makes it Three
Just over nine thousand loyal harness racing fans braved the somewhat cold weather on Saturday to attend Super Night at Balmoral Park Racecourse. Super Night has been held at the Balmoral Park Racecourse since 1998, and gives spectators the opportunity to see a jam packed lineup of spectacular horses and action filled racing events. But, even more exciting, a new Super Night record was set on Saturday night,by the magnificent harness racing veteran, King Johnny. It was a racing meeting that will forever be remembered in the history of Super Night and Balmoral Park Racecourse.
King Johnny is owned and trained by Clark. Driver Tim Tetrick turned down a driving opportunity at Mohawk Racecourse to reunite with King Johnny for the $125 000 Dan Patch. Tetrick’s father sold King Johnny to Fairley at the age of two, and both driver and horse therefore have a long history together. For this reason, Tetrick would not have wanted to be anywhere else, but with King Johnny.
Now at age nine, many would have thought that King Johnny would battle against his younger competitors, but his experience and determination were underestimated. Tetrick and King Johnny had to work to get themselves into the leading position, but once there, neither was willing to give up. The further down the final stretch they came, the deeper King Johnny dug in to stay in front. After the race, Tetrick had only praise for the wonderful performance of King Johnny, saying: “It's amazing that every year he gets better and better. This horse has got so much heart. You don't find horses like him. He's got physical problems and is not the best gaited to go fast like he does. He's a freak, that's what he is.'' King Johnny also became the first horse to win the Dan Patch three years consecutively, and at record speed.
Other racing events of the Super Night also included the running of the $270 000 Orange and Blue Pace of 2 year old males, the $174 000 Grandma Ann, $260 000 Orange and Blue for fillies, $170 000 Pete Langley Memorial, $120 000 Su Mac Lad trot, $100 000 Lady Ann Reed and the $125 000 Ann Vonian Pace.