One of the special guests on Fantasy Owners Day at Laurel Park March 18 was Bruce Casella, who has worked for ESPN and NBC and currently is the videographer for “Let’s Go Racing,” the weekly television program on Parx Racing that he launched along with Pennsylvania Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association President Sal DeBunda about 20 years ago.
Casella spent most of his day in Maryland shooting video and talking with participants in Fantasy Owners Day and the Fantasy Ownership Challenge. The PTHA, which is the driving force behind “Let’s Go Racing,” is intrigued by the Laurel fantasy contest, which runs through the end of the year, and has expressed interest in organizing a similar one at Parx in the future.
Casella took part in the contest at Laurel, and his fantasy horse, Participate, is second in the earnings’ standings as of March 19. Casella did a nice job capturing Fantasy Owners Day, and you can watch his video here.
The luck of the draw paid off for T. Chris Young and a few others when Triple Tree Stable's Claravoyant won one of six races to kick off the 2017 Fantasy Ownership Challenge at Laurel Park.
Participants in the free Fantasy Ownership Challenge were randomly assigned horses in the six overnight races on the Saturday program, and Claravoyant, trained by Mary Eppler and ridden by Alex Cintron, won the race with the largest purse of $50,000. Claravoyant earned $28,500 for winning the maiden special weight event for fillies and mares and as of March 19 topped the earnings' list for the more than 40 horses that are now part of the contest that runs through Dec. 31 of this year.
About 300 people signed up for events on Fantasy Owners Day—far more than expected—which included a seminar for prospective owners. Many of those eligible to register for the Fantasy Ownership Challenge expressed enthusiasm throughout the day.
We hope you had a great time participating in Fantasy Owners Day at Laurel Park, but it's much more than a one-day event.
Now it's time to track the progress of "your" horse as it competes through the rest of the year, and this website (http://fantasyownership.com) will provide you with the information you need such as regular updates on contest horses, standings based upon official earnings, and blog posts, photos and video to add some color.
Thanks to the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, Maryland Jockey Club and Maryland Horse Breeders Association, $50,000 is up for grabs in the Fantasy Ownership Challenge. Based solely on horses' U.S. earnings from March 18-Dec. 31 of this year as recorded by Equibase, there's a chance to win $30,000 for first, $10,000 for second, $5,500 for third, $3,000 for fourth, and $1,500 for fifth.