Hall Of Fame

Hall Of Fame

2021
Aug 21

VDM Winner 2021 (Fillies Division)

Louisiana

LOUISIANA  (Sweet Lou x The Player Hanover)
Time: P ‘2’ 1:59.20 **Track Record**
Owner:  Steven Gilvear
Trainer: Gordon Gilvear
Driver:   Gordon Gilvear
Breeder: Steven Gilvear  

 

What Hall of Fame announcer Roger Huston had to say: 

With 26,400 British Pounds on the line a field of nine saw Grant Cullen send Eternal Lad to the front while the heavy favorite Louisiana driven by Gordon Gilvear got away 4th. Gilvear made his move with Louisiana at the 3/8ths pole to go head and head past the half. Gilvear seemed to be biding his time on the outside till they straightened out on the backside. From that point on the winner was never in doubt as Louisiana opened up by four at the three quarters and driver Gordon Gilvear never looked back winning by 13 lengths in a Track Record 1:59.20. Whirlwind White with William Greenhorn Jr came on to be second while Yvonne Hanover and Rocker Laidler finished third. Louisiana is owned by Steven Gilvear and trained by John Gilvear. It was a dominating performance by the filly by Sweet Lou out of The Player Hanover.

Aug 20

VDM Winner 2021 (Colts Division)

Oakwood Paddy

OAKWOOD PADDY (Foreclosure x Carmel Camden)
Time: P ‘2’ 2.02.9
Owner: Ruari McNulty
Trainer: Gavin Murdock
Driver: Gavin Murdock
Breeder: Oakwood Stud 

 

What Hall of Fame announcer Roger Huston had to say: 

The 2021 VDM at Tir Prince resulted in the largest purse ever 27,600 British Pounds up for grabs as a field of nine went to the post. With post position 1 driver Richard Haythornthwaite went right to the top with Biggins while Oakwood Paddy driven by trainer-driver Gavin Murdock got away 4th from the second tier. Action picked up past the half with Biggins still showing the way.  As the horses headed to the three-quarters they were five in and four out. Murdock sent Oakwood Paddy three wide shortly before that marker and the battle was on. Biggins was at the rail, Oakwood Paddy now two wide and coming three wide was Oakwood Ardan and James Haythornthwaite at the top of the stretch. In the final 1/16th Oakwood Paddy drew away for the win by a half length in 2:02.9. Biggins held second and Oakwood Ardan was third. The winner is owned by Ruari McNulty and trained and driven by Gavin Murdock.

2019
Aug 11

VDM Winner 2019 (Fillies Division)

VDM Winner 2019 (Fillies Division)

RAINBOW WRITER (Sportswriter – Hepburn Bluechip)
Time: P, 2, 2:01.4
Owner: Bernard Grendon
Trainer: Bernard Grendon
Driver: Patrick Kane
Breeder: 

By Sportswriter, sire of Oakwood Starcam who landed the spoils in 2018 Rainbow Writer gave the owner/trainer Bernard “Benny Grendon” his greatest ever day in the sport when she pulled off one of the unlikeliest of victories in VDM history. From the 3 hole driver, Patrick Kane tried to leave hard but he couldn’t quite get enough clearance.  Forced wide into the first bend the filly suddenly made a bad break. Almost at a standstill at the tail of the field most drivers would have pulled her up and saved the filly for another day – but you only get one chance at a VDM final and Kane refused to take this set back lying down. Nursed back into contention Rainbow Writer had moved into fourth by the half and using her devastating turn of foot to the great effect she was in front by the ¾ pole and found herself six lengths clear turning for home. Maintaining that margin-right to the wire Rainbow Writer had executed one of the most extraordinary comebacks ever in Irish harness racing to the shock and delight of the packed grandstand.

Aug 11

VDM Winner 2019 (Colts Division)

VDM Winner 2019 (Colts Division)

MATTEUCEOUS (Armbro Duece – Another Mattie)
TIME: P, 2, 2:03
Owner: Frank Huschka 
Trainer: Alexis Laidler
Driver: Rocker Laidler
Breeder: Gareth Price

Following in the footsteps of half brothers Titanium, Miraculous, and Matticulous, the Armrbo Deuce bred Matteuceous became the fourth winner of the Colts VDM final out of dam Another Mattie in 2019. The top lot at the 2018 Builth sale costing £25,000 the Frank Hushka owned Alexis Laidler trained colt demonstrated his well-being before VDM weekend by taking out the Breeders Crown at Tir Prince a fortnight earlier. Drawn 8 in the VDM final driver William “Rocker” Laidler dropped Matteuceous to the tail of the field at the off before producing the colt with a sustained run from half-way. Four wide rounding the home turn he kicked on again in the stretch to ambush the Jordan Stratton driven Oakwood Cowboy close home to triumph in 2:03. A big future awaits the big son of the ill-fated Armbro Deuce who showed tremendous heart and courage to win going away, from what appeared to be an unlikely starting position

 

2018
Aug 01

VDM Winner 2018 (Fillies Division)

VDM Winner 2018 (Fillies Division)

OAKWOOD STARCAM (Sportswriter – Camadian)
Time: P, 2, 2:02.7
Owner: Meadowbranch/Brian Redmond
Trainer: William Flanagan
Driver: John Richardson
Breeder: Oakwood Stud (IRL)
Oakwood Starcam was the highest priced yearling filly ever sold under auction when the hammer fell at Brightwells Standardbred Sales in October 2017 and the £28,000 given seems cheap considering she went unbeaten throughout 2018 culminating in an unlikely but deserved victory in the 2018 VDM. From an uncompromising draw 8 and trouble in running the filly dug deep into her reserves under John Richardson to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat for owners Meadowbranch/Brian Redmond who shared the winner’s enclosure with an emotional Delaney family who had finally bred an Oakwood suffixed winner of their late brother’s memorial event. The time of 2:02.7 was inconsequential given the manner of her victory.

Aug 01

VDM Winner 2018 (Colts Division)

VDM Winner 2018 (Colts Division)

NORTHERN PRIDE (Bettors Delight – Artomatic Love)
TIME: P, 2, 2:03.4
Owner: Steven Gilvear
Trainer: John Gilvear
Driver: Gordon Gilvear
Breeder: Northfields Farm (CAN)
Northern Pride became the first ever Scottish winner of the VDM when he emerged triumphant from a difficult 7 draw with Gordon Gilvear in the bike. The colt by Bettors Delight was another Harrisburg purchase and owned by Gordon’s uncle Steven Gilvear from Auchenbowie and won a shade cosily in 2:03.4 to the delight of a big Scottish contingent who thronged the winners enclosure to celebrate with the entire Gilvear family.

2017
Aug 01

VDM Winner 2017 (Fillies Division)

VDM Winner 2017 (Fillies Division)

ROBYN CAMDEN (Art Professor – Keystone Havoc)
Time: P, 2, 1:59.8 **Track Record**
Owner: All Out Syndicate
Trainer: Clive Kavanagh
Driver: Jonathan Dunne
Breeder: Camden Stud (ENG)
In the weeks leading up to the event, Robyn Camden was hot favourite to triumph in 2017 and stunning dark bay didn’t disappoint. Bred by Camden Stud the filly was owned by All Out Syndicate, trained by Clive Kavanagh and driven to victory by Jonathan Dunne who kept things simple and just blitzed the competition from the outset in both the heat and the final. Pacing 1:59.6 NEW TRACK RECORD for Fillies in her heat on the Saturday, she came out on the Sunday and paced 1:59.8 to take the crown and the €10,000 first prize. Robyn remained unbeaten in 12 straight races and was eventually sent across the Atlantic to resume her career in the Autumn of 2018.

Aug 01

VDM Winner 2017 (Colts Division)

VDM Winner 2017 (Colts Division)

MATTICULOUS (Hasty Hall – Another Mattie)
Time: P, 2, 1:58.9 **Track Record**
Owner: BKB Morgans Syndicate
Trainer: Alexis Laidler
Driver: William Greenhorn
Breeder: Gareth Price (WALES)
An astonishing feat was achieved in 2017 when Matticulous strode to an imperious victory in the final of the colts VDM. His dam Another Mattie was responsible for Titanium in 2014 and Miraculous in 2015 making her the mother of 3 separate VDM final winners in just 5 years. A £32,000 yearling from Builth in October 2016, Matticulous cruised to a heat win in 2:01.4 before going on to smash the TRACK RECORD clocking 1:58.9 in that year’s grand final. Owned by a syndicate hailing from Wales and England the colt was driven by crack Scottish reins man for the UKs champion trainer Alexis Laidler.

2016
Aug 01

VDM Winner 2016 (Fillies Division)

VDM Winner 2016 (Fillies Division)

IB COYOTE (Share The Delight – Jill N Jones)
Time: P, 2, 2:03
Owner: Bill Donovan & IB Stables
Trainer: Tadhg Murphy
Driver: Dexter Dunn
Breeder: Donal & Tadgh Murphy (IRL)
IB Coyote became the first ever Irish trained winner of a VDM final when taking out the inaugural fillies only event in 2016 for brothers Donal and Tadhg Murphy from Inish Beg in Baltimore West Cork, hence the suffix IB. New Zealand’s Dexter Dunn partnered the filly who was part-owner by Bill Donovan from Florida USA making this winner a truly international affair. Dunn took out the heat in 2:04.9 on the Saturday evening and clinched the final in 2:03 on the Sunday afternoon denying Jennifer Camden who was partnered by another visiting American guest driver Aaron Merriman.

Aug 01

VDM Winner 2016 (Colts Division)

VDM Winner 2016 (Colts Division)

TYRION HANOVER (Somebeachsomewhere – Tiz To Dream)
Time: 2:01.6
Owner: John Howard
Trainer: Samboy Howard
Driver: Richard Haythornthwaite
Breeder: Hanover Shoe Farms (USA)
Such was the success of the VDM over the previous 4 years that organizers now decided to split the event into 2 separate divisions for colts and fillies. In 2016 Tyrion Hanover became the first ever US bred import to capture the prize. Acquired in Harrisburg the previous autumn by John Howard from Morecambe in the UK and trained by his son Samboy, Tyrion Hanover won his heat in 2:03.2 before going on to win that years final in 2:01.6 with Richard Haythornthwaite doing the steering.

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