A list of some of the most interesting standardbreds foaled in June:
Walt Hanover — June 3, 1979
As a four-year-old in 1983, he became the horse who dead-heated with Cam Fella in 1:53.1 at the Meadowlands on June 23. That tie came in the midst of Cam’s 28-race win streak to end his career and catapulted him to his second straight Horse of the Year title. But it was Walt Hanover who dead heated with the “Pacing Machine” that day, despite being totally dismissed in the wagering to the tune of 83-1.
Die Laughing — June 11, 1988
One thing you might not expect from a June foal back in the day was to win the Woodrow Wilson, then the high water race for freshman. But Die Laughing did it and went from last to first in the 1990 edition in a field that included Cambest and Silver Almahurst. He scored a nose victory and made Richard Silverman (25 at the time) the youngest driver to win a million-dollar race. Tim Tetrick did him a few months better winning a million-dollar event twice with Southwind Lynx in 2007.
Art Major — June 11, 1999
He and stablemate McArdle were June foals and one of the most powerful duos in the same barn ever as two-year-olds and for the first part of their sophomore seasons for Chris Ryder. Art Major moved into the Robinson barn mid-summer 2002 and proceeded to launch into a four-month earning blitz rarely if ever seen before. After starting August with $80,000 on his card, he ended the year at $1,562,779 — the richest season ever for any three-year-old who did not compete in either the Meadowlands Pace or the North America Cup. He won his division at three and four and the most memorable race in there might be his nose loss to McArdle at four in the Haughton Memorial. Art Major is also now a Horse of the Year sire. His daughter JK Shesalady went unblemished in 2014 and took home the year-end honor.
McArdle — June 5, 1999
He started and ended with Chris Ryder and earned well over $2 million for his career. He’s also sired some top ones — 2010 Meadowlands Pace winner One More Laugh (in 1:47.4) who defeated Horse of the Year Rock N Roll Heaven. McWicked — the leading money-winning pacer of 2014 — is also a son of McArdle.
Davids Pass — June 5, 1992
Has anyone ever won two million-dollar races with less fanfare than Davids Pass? He became the first horse to do so (1995 Meadowlands Pace and 1995 North America Cup) and not win his divisional title. Jennas Beach Boy came back from a summer injury with abandon and captured year-end honors. Brett Pelling trained Davids Pass, who wound up as 1995’s leading money-winning pacer ($1,452,363).
Harmonious — June 3, 1987
All he did was win the 1990 Hambletonian and wind up the year’s number one trotter for earnings at $1,033,942. The Hambletonian score was John Campbell’s third in a four-year span having taking his first two back-to-back in 1987-88 with Mack Lobell and Armbro Goal.
Life Source — June 4, 1997
One of the rare horses 15-20 years ago who was very good early and late. At three racing for Joe Holloway, he was part of the first ever sub-1:50 daily double on Hambletonian Day 2000 winning in 1:48.4 (Howard Parker). He then starred later in his career at 6-7-8 racing mostly for the Richie Banca stable.
Shadow Play — June 5, 2005
Get this: The seven-figure earner who gave Somebeachsomewhere all he could handle in the 2008 Messenger was hip #1059 at the Harrisburg yearling sale.
I Am A Fool — June 3, 2001
He bounced around early, but wound up starring in the Brett Pelling outfit in the summer and fall of 2003 taking the Breeders Crown and divisional honors.