Along the Backstretch: trainers old and new celebrate wins at snowy Fraser Downs

As snow falls, one of the youngest – and one of the oldest – trainers celebrate wins at Fraser Downs Racetrack and Casino in Cloverdale.

I would like to start off by apologizing to the Lower Mainland population. The last few weeks I have been complaining about the rain on Friday nights at Fraser Downs. Mother Nature said, “not this week (Nov. 28), I will give you snow.”

A blanket of snow started to accumulate as the evening went on but that did not deter the bettors as the wagering was the highest for an 11-race card this meet.

Veteran trainers Serge Masse, Keith Clark and Bill Davis must have had the right kind of snowshoes on, as they all won two races from their stable.

The highlight of the evening for me was when one of the youngest trainers at Fraser Downs, Cherie Paskaruk, 23, and one of the oldest, Dan Ingram, 84, each won a race. Cherie is a young trainer with only one horse and a full-time job off the track, has overcome issues growing up, competed in the Fraser Downs Powder Puff race, paddocks horses for other trainers and always volunteers whenever asked by myself and others.

Driver John Chappell, Cherie and three-year-old filly, Cowgirl Poetry, are all about what makes Standardbred racing a great sport!

The temperature was very cold and the track was frozen but the horses went very fast on Sunday, Nov. 30. Alberta driver Brandon Campbell is used to cold weather racing and won three races.

There is a new face winning the Open for the best horses at Fraser Downs the last couple of weeks, Beren Hanover. Owner Dal Reo Farms (Les Cridland) has been a major player in the past and paid top dollar for this well-bred four-year-old and is starting to see a nice return on his investment. Dal Reo Farms also purchased a yearling at the sale last week, I get the impression Les doesn’t buy horses unless he thinks he has a chance to get a return on his investment.

Racing resumes this Friday (Dec. 5) at 7 p.m. and Sunday (Dec.7) at 12:45 p.m.


– Jackson Wittup is executive director of Harness Racing B.C.

Just Posted

Surrey branch of youth mentoring program to share in $5 million

Cloverdale-Langley City MP John Aldag announces $5 million in federal funding for youth program

Abbotsford ‘not in a foreign country,’ judge chastises lawyer

Judge addresses complaint about inconvenience of driving from Vancouver

Surrey awards contract for Hawthorne Park improvements

Roughly $1 million contract is first of three phases of upgrades to the Surrey park

Langley Township mulls new study on 208th Street widening

The cost may be high, warned several councillors.

Surrey council votes to cap public hearing speakers to five minutes

Surrey man says the move is ‘destroying open consultations and transparency’

Surrey averaging one shooting a week in 2018

Police believe Friday night shooting in 13200-block of 62nd Avenue was targeted

Moose creates uber Canadian Olympic moment

A Calgary man shares a truly Canadian moment on Twitter of a Moose enjoying the Olympics

Lower Mainland clinic forced to close after reaching daily patient limit

Maple Ridge one of many cities ailing from shortage of physicians

B.C. drunk driver unknowingly drags snowmobiles along highway

North District RCMP stopped a driver Sunday near Prince George whose two sleds had fallen off a flat deck trailer and were being dragged along behind his truck.

Canada reacts to Cassie Sharpe’s Olympic gold

From Prime Minister Trudeau to Ryan Reynolds, congratulations abound

BCHL Today: Shorthanded scoring binge for Victoria Grizzlies and Krall named POW

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at whats going on around the league and the junior A world.

Search continues for B.C. woman missing in Mexico

Gloria Anne Miller was last seen Thursday, Feb. 15 diving in Puerto Vallarta

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canada rounds out Day 11 earning gold in 2 more events

Comox Valley’s Cassie Sharpe and fan-favourites Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir all earned golds

5 to start your day

NDP to release budget today, Dawson Creek man’s car found in Hope, and more

Most Read