Each year, the members of the Upstate New York Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association looks to recognize and honor people that have both excelled and represented racing in the upstate region in a manner that keeps the sport significant both locally and nationally.
On Sunday, July 15, during Back to the Track weekend, lifetime western New York horseman Gary Gregory will be introduced in the winner's circle as the newest member of the Upstate New York Harness Racing Hall of Fame.
Gregory started working around horses with his father while he was still in school. He eventually set off on his own and started a public stable that quickly became successful. Through the years he was always a "go to" guy when people were looking for a trainer because of his honesty and integrity.
Some of the many top horses that Gregory took through their paces include Keystone Astro (Bye Bye Byrd-Adios Marty 2.01.1 $136,204), Must B Lightning (Jolly Roger-Bunny B Hanover 1.57.1 $148,523), Spitfire Lauxmont (Precious Fella-Flashy Pass 1.56 $1124,271) Dreamin In The Rain (Call For Rain-Lady Loueen 1.53.4 $57,397) and Rambling Roxie (Adios Wilton-Molly Pence 2.02.4 $33,860), the horse that gave Gary's son Jeff his first driving win.
Although a premier trainer for over 45 years, Gregory has never driven in a race. He attributes that to his early owners wanting the best drivers on the grounds to team their horses, and him wanting to make his owners happy. It was a combination that worked well then and one he felt would continue to work moving forward.
Gregory's portrait will be placed on the wall of the permanent home of the UNY Harness Racing Hall of Fame at Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY.
If you would like to see an interesting documentary done on Gary Gregory by a local new channel, click this link. (http://www.wgrz.com/video/1161616746001/1/Batavia-Downs-trainer-Gary-Gregory )
This year UNY USHWA will induct a total four new members into its Hall throughout the summer. Those names will be announced shortly and the remaining presentations will be held at Vernon Downs, Tioga Downs and Batavia Downs.
To read biographies of the 21 members of the Hall that are already enshrined, click this link. (http://www.upstatenyushwa.com/5.html)(UNY/USHWA)