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Corydon track hosts first fall meet

Wine tasting, crafts part of harness racing

September 26, 2012 | 09:55 AM

The Harrison County Fairgrounds in Corydon will stable a host of standardbred horses for the Harrison County Harness Racing Festival on Saturday.

Competing on the limestone will be approximately 20 to 30 harness races (official post position draw will take place 48 hours before the meet begins) for trotters and pacers. The racing action will begin at 11 a.m.

Also, as part of the festival, there will be wine tasting in the merchant's building behind the grandstand from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission to the races is free, but there is a $10 charge for wine tasting. The first 200 wine tasters will get an engraved glass. Several wineries are expected to be on hand.

Along with the racing and vino, craft booths will also be part of the festivities.

Annually, harness races take place during the Harrison County Fair, but this will be the first time for a fall meet.

The harness races are part of the Indiana Sired Fair Circuit racing schedule, and each race will compete for a $3,000 purse. The Harrison County meet is one of the final fair race dates for horsemen before the championships convene Oct. 13 in Shelbyville.

"Many horses are going to come because they'll need the points for the championship from this race date," Carla Clunie, Harrison County race secretary, said.

Clunie said the infield will be reserved for horses and their caretakers due to the volume of equines expected. Spectators will be parked on the outside of the track.

The Harrison County Fairgrounds also received a $100,000 grant from the Indiana Legislature to upgrade the facility for horsemen. A new roof is planned for the main horse barn, along with updating signs, plumbing, lighting and electric. Funds, in the amount of $17,000, are also set aside to fix drainage problems on one of the track's turns.

"The horsemen already say this is one of the best county tracks around," Clunie said. "We're excited about the improvements."

Grants are available through the casino slot revenue from Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, a pari-mutuel track in Indianapolis.

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Corydon Democrat, 301 N. Capitol Ave., Corydon, IN 47112 1-812-738-2211 email