Wilder, Kleinhans to host NYSS Night of Champions
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Batavia Downs has announced that they have retained the services of Heather Wilder and Peter Kleinhans as their on-air personalities for the broadcast of the $1.8 million New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) Night of Champions which will be held at the track on Saturday, Sept. 14.
Wilder will be doing pre and post-race interviews and Kleinhans will provide analysis and handicapping insight.
Wilder grew up with solid roots in harness racing being the daughter of Dan and Ruth Altmeyer and later marrying The Meadows' leading driver Mike Wilder. Her knowledge of every aspect of the sport is extensive as is her relationships with all its participants.
Besides being actively involved in racing everyday, Wilder currently handles talent management for the Delaware County Fair during the live TV broadcast of the Little Brown Jug. She has also been a regular part of the United States Harness Writers Association’s (USHWA) Dan Patch Awards Banquet both as an onstage host and Facebook live interviewer and producer for many years.
While she worked as public relations and marketing director for the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association she became a pioneer of reporting on racing on Facebook Live and coordinated the promotion of countless on-track events. In recognition of her fine work she was the recipient of USHWA's Lew Barasch Memorial Breakthrough Award for industry career achievements in 2013.
Wilder’s lifelong involvement with the sport and its players will make for interesting trackside and winner’s circle interviews throughout the night.
Kleinhans started going to Roosevelt Raceway as a teenager and his passion for the sport grew from there. Eventually he started training and driving his own stable and reached the top of the game.
Kleinhans was training a stable of 20 horses led by Enough Talk who was the first trotter in the world to break the 1:50 barrier when he won by over eight lengths in 1:49.3 at Colonial Downs in 2008. Enough Talk also won the Breeders Crown in 2010 and received the Dan Patch older trotter of the year trophy from USHWA in each of those two seasons.
Although he still competes as an amateur driver, Kleinhans has expanded his role in the sport to announcer, analyst and host and has recently filled in at the Meadowlands in those capacities. His knowledge and expertise of the sport and articulate delivery of same will provide an informative and entertaining look at the night’s races for all who are watching.
“We are very excited to add such accomplished and professional talents to our production of the Night of Champions” said Todd Haight, director/general manager of live racing at Batavia Downs. “Heather and Peter have performed at the highest levels of the sport both on and off the track and will bring a unique perspective to the show for our fans.”
The Batavia Downs live racing meet kicks off on Wednesday, July 24 and runs through Saturday, Dec. 14. (Batavia Downs)