Compton to receive Lifetime Achievement Award
December 11, 2017
« Return to News
Jim Compton has been a respected western New York horseman for more than 35 years. He trained, drove and bred many horses that are still remembered at his home tracks for their competitive nature and success.
For his years of dedication to the sport, the Upstate New York Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association will present him with the Lifetime Achievement Award in the winner's circle at Batavia Downs on Saturday, Dec. 16, during the 10th annual "Night of Distinction" awards ceremony.
Compton's full time job was working for General Motors in Rochester, but his passion was for harness racing. So in 1978 he started moonlighting at the farm of local driving legend Fred Haslip to learn the ins and outs of the business. After a few years he got his trainers' license and in 1983 he drove his first race.
Compton and his wife Sandra always ran a small but successful stable, racing horses like Sly Hi, No Parking Zone, Splurging Rita, Gasper Again and Held For Ransom, who won multiple Opens at Batavia Down, Vernon Downs and Buffalo Raceway en route to amassing 51 lifetime wins.
When Held For Ransom's career was over, Compton bred him to one of his race mares named Suspicious Burns and the result of that breeding was a horse named Michael Scores.
Michael Scores was a New York Sires Stake star and rock-solid overnight campaigner for 11 years. He won 86 races and earned $668,079 lifetime without ever seeing the Grand Circuit. He set track records at Tioga Downs (1:50.4) and at Batavia Downs (1:52.1) when he won the 2006 Kane Memorial Pace. And he will always be remembered for his "intentionally parked out" style of racing.
Compton's numbers were not gaudy, however they were efficient. On the training side he had 578 wins out of 2,892 starts with $1.9 million in purses and a UTR of .337. As a driver he won 522 races out of 2,725 starts and made $1.13 million in purses and a UDR of .330. And all the horses he either trained or drove were 50 percent in the money over his entire career.
Post time for Saturday night's card is 6 p.m. (Batavia Downs)