>>They call Mississippi the “bush tracks.”
In rural, somewhat secluded areas of the state, acres of land lend itself to some of the best
training grounds for national title-holding harness racehorses.
We’ve been racing in the state of Mississippi, officially since 1976.
Announcer: Make that swing around that turn for the first time on their way down to the
half, these fillies aren’t playing. They’re hustling all the way down the track.
On the inside, “Look Good On You” on the outside, it’s “Dragon Baby.”
At the half in 1:03. In the northern states people go to the track
because they go to bet. Here in Mississippi they go to the track to
watch the horses race because it’s great family fun.
They bring out their coolers and everything in there.
Their grills and they can barbeque while watching the horses race.
Woman: We have people from all over Mississippi that come watch.
People having fun, children playing and everybody just gathered around having a good time.
Wade: Harness racing is a particular type racing where the horse wears harness and with
the pacing races they were hobbles on their legs to help them to hold their gates at high
rates of speed, and they pull the sulky verses quarter horses, thoroughbred racing where
they use the saddle where they ride on their backs.
Grayson: Mississippians have trained and sold some very expensive first-class harness racing
horses. Harness racers and owners from throughout
the United States are always eager to have a Mississippi-trained horse.
There’s a horse that was trained here, that left the state of Mississippi, “Public Enemy.”
He went on to win over 2 million dollars. What I feel that makes it work here is the
passion that we put into it. We are very persistent in our training and with the climate that
we have here in Mississippi, we have the opportunity to train more versus the guys in the northern
states. And these are the things that give us that winning edge. We do have a racing
association here in Mississippi where we have races on an average of once a month. They
are official races that we officiate. Tinsey: Today we’re racing at Grants Down
in Jackson, Mississippi. We have about 214 members who oversee all the rules and regulations
of Harness Racing all over the United States. Announcer: And we’re off.
Wade: When I start the races, the staring gate is running 35 miles per hour, and those
horses are pushing that truck. Announcer: And they’re off and pacing…
WADE: I would estimate them pacing anywhere 55 plus at top speed going around the track.
And that’s a great feeling, going that fast, sitting inside that sulky. Grayson: A prime contender that has the crowd
cheering these days is a new comer: Announcer: “Silk Swinging Star” and Derrick
Anderson he’s sweeping on around that turn… (FADE OUT)>>Wade: His registered name on his papers
is “Silk Swinging Star.” I call him “Silk Side Swinger.”
I have some big hopes for him. He’s a horse that I’m training to send to
Chicago to Bellmore Track to hopefully set a track record with.
>>Announcer: Here he is at the wire “Silk Swinging Star.”
>>Wade: He’s a prime candidate. He has one of the best gaits that I’ve seen
in harness horses. For a horse to come from a little Mississippi
barn, a little Mississippi track and go to these big major tracks and outshine, I mean,
that’s a great accomplishment.>>Grayson: The Mississippi Trotting Association
host races once a month and they’re open to the public. So bring your family, friends,
lawn chair and a cooler and have some great Mississippi harness horse racing fun.