Happy New Year! All of us at Harness Racing Update (HRU) send our deep thanks to our advertisers, readers and contributors for the support in 2018.
In the three years since the new management took over HRU in January of 2016, the number of people that subscribe to HRU has increased by more than 1,600 (27.5 per cent). This despite an industry that is in decline in most facets. That growth continued over 2018, with an increase in subscribers of 8.4 per cent compared to 2017.
We continue to post steady growth in other areas, as well. In 2018, we launched our popular broadcast division (available here) with 2-year-olds in Training and sales coverage. Also, the number of people that like our Facebook page (available here) has organically grown (not paid) by more than 1,200 (up more than 23 per cent) in 2018 alone.
As for top stories, in 2016 we listed our Top 5 stories by the number of shares they received (full story here).
For 2017, our production guru Brian Fuller did one better and calculated the five most read HRU stories of the year using stats gathered from online statistics (full story here).
This year, we upped the list to our 10 most read HRU stories. They are, as follows:
10. Mark Weaver: No foiling this farewell
by Dave Briggs – Sept. 7
9. Caretaker shortage in Ontario
by Sandra Snyder — Jan. 19
8. Alaska journeys from Amish buggy to the track
by James Platz — Nov. 11
7. Heroic rescuers help narrowly avert complete devastation in First Line barn fire
by Dave Briggs — Dec. 23
6. New $1 million race to debut at Red Mile in 2019
by Dave Briggs — Aug. 29
5. Inside the Mind of Jimmy Takter
by Dave Briggs — Nov. 24
4. Buzzworthy: Twitter blows up over horse that won’t leave the track at Pompano
by Garnet Barnsdale — Dec. 14
3. Owners the focus of tough new WEG and Big M rule
by Dave Briggs — Jan. 7
2. Meadowlands issues statement on banning Brian Sears
by Dave Briggs — July 6
1. Legendary standardbred racehorse and stallion Somebeachsomewhere euthanized
by Dave Briggs — Jan. 14