Palone Celebrates 13,000th Win

Published: May 4, 2009 8:40 pm ET

Last Comment: May 5, 2009 11:39 am ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

Dave Palone is a better harness racing driver than harness racing handicapper

Entering Monday, needing four wins to reach 13,000 for his career, Palone told his family to stay home because he thought his best chance to reach the milestone would be Tuesday. Palone was right, in a way. He did not win four races on Monday – he won five.

Palone got victory No. 13,000 in the 11th race at The Meadows, his home track in western Pennsylvania, behind Western Kissed. He added a win two races later to end the day with 13,001. He trails only Herve Filion (15,174) and Cat Manzi (13,327) for the most victories in North American harness racing history.

“It’s a nice number to reach,” Palone said. “I couldn’t have gotten there without a lot of good horses to race over the years. I’m very appreciative of that.”

There was no special celebration planned in the Palone household. In fact, Palone was preparing to spend the evening working with 13-year-old daughter Hannah on a science project for school. Tomorrow, Palone’s father, Butch, celebrates his 72nd birthday.

As for his ability to predict his wins, Palone said with a laugh, “All my family is upset with me. They asked me if they should come over, but I thought I would have a better chance tomorrow. I had a good day. Usually, the last one is a tough one.”

This year, Palone has won 222 races, which ranks fourth in North America. Palone has been the leading driver at The Meadows for two decades.

“Anyone that knows me knows I’m a very competitive person,” Palone said recently. “I just don’t accept mediocrity. I expect a lot out of myself. I’ve been given a lot of good opportunities, and I feel with the opportunities I get, I need to produce. I won’t accept anything but winning races.”

(Harness Racing Communications)