Peck, Sears Trainer, Driver of the Year, respectively
December 09, 2009
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Trainer Greg Peck and driver Brian Sears, the brains and hands behind the impressive campaign of three-year-old sensation Muscle Hill, have been elected Glen Garnsey Trainer of the Year and Driver of the Year in balloting among active members of the United States Harness Writers Association.
Peck, a native of Nova Scotia in Maritime Canada, will quite probably be the first trainer to guide an undefeated trotter to Harness Horse of the Year honors. The three-year-old Muscle Hill won all 12 of his starts, earned $2,456,041, and set a record of 1:50 1/5 in winning The Hambletonian, which joined the Breeders Crown, World Trotting Derby, Canadian Trotting Classic and Kentucky Futurity on the horse’s scorecard.
It could be that Peck’s “other job” gave him just the perspective to polish Muscle Hill to race at his best against the sport’s best and in front of its biggest crowds: president of Fine Line Inc., a media training firm which instructs executives how to communicate effectively with the public, often in difficult situations.
Peck turned the driving lines on Muscle Hill over to Brian Sears for virtually all of this season’s starts, and Sears did his usual masterful job, guiding the champion home first and then into the winner’s circle each time he raced him.
Winning, of course, is nothing new to Sears, who this season took his fifth straight “big meet” title at the Meadowlands, and tenth in a row overall. Besides winning with Muscle Hill on Breeders Crown night, Sears also guided Broadway Schooner and Fancy Filly to the Woodbine Victory Lane. Another big day was Hambletonian Day, where Muscle Hill, his first Hambo winner, contributed almost half of the $1,555,674.50 in purses taken down by the man in white and brown, which also included guiding Peter Haughton winner Holiday Road (trained by Peck).
Sears and Peck will be honored at the annual awards dinner of the Harness Writers, to be held on Sunday, February 28, 2010 at Yonkers Raceway, just north of New York City. To obtain tickets, or further information, please contact Dave Little at 212.210.1691. (US Harness Writers)