Hanover, PA — Hanover Shoe Farms, the southern Pennsylvania harness racing breeding operation which has led all of North American harness racing in seasonal money won by its graduates since record keeping began in 1949, has just broken its own mark for one-year earnings by those raised at the nursery. The $31,451,117 total it posted in 2017 was eclipsed on Dec. 27 of last year, with the final number for 2018 reaching $31,589,496.
Dorsoduro Hanover, recently voted champion 3-year-old pacing male of the season, led the contributors to the record total with $1,284,562, second-highest total of 2018, behind only McWicked. The 2017 Little Brown Jug winner Filibuster Hanover, making the difficult step up to the free-for-all ranks (and horses such as McWicked), still brought in winnings of $661,601, the most money earned by any 4-year-old in 2018 North American racing.
The Hanover success story is well-known in the sport: how in 1926 Lawrence Sheppard bought the 69-horse dispersal of A.B. Coxe and used the stock as a foundation to build the premier harness operation in the sport, with racehorses graduating to the breeding ranks, and a continuous, relentless search to acquire the top sires in the sport, along with outstanding broodmares. Sheppard has been followed by John Simpson Sr., his son Jim, and Sheppard’s grandson Russell Williams as visionary horsepeople/businesspeople who have continued Hanover’s dominance while giving back much to the sport in leadership positions.
“The record-breaking 2018 racing year by Hanover Shoe Farm-bred racehorses shows our commitment to Mr. Sheppard’s vision of being the premier Standardbred farm,” said Jim Simpson, Hanover’s Chairman. “I am proud to have been at the helm for 20 years, and to state that the new record tops all farms in the world breeding all types of racehorses. This accomplishment takes a dedicated staff, the best stallions and mares our commercial business can buy, and talented trainers, drivers and grooms working tirelessly. What drives this entire business are the owners who buy and race these horses. All of us at Hanover Shoe Farms give thanks for the owners willing to invest the money, time and effort to keep this business alive.”
Giving no signs of slowing down despite “fronting its field” into an eighth decade now, Hanover has truly become synonymous with excellence in the harness racing industry, with the earnings record of 2018 just the latest proof in a list of accomplishments which continues on strongly, and shows no sign of “tiring.”