In the year 2000 a new harness racing series was created when six north-western Ohio County Fairs banded together to form the Signature Series. In 2001 the Signature Series expanded to nine participating Fairs, and in 2002 the series further expanded to twelve Fairs: Oak Harbor, Eaton, Wapakoneta, Xenia, Urbana, Celina, Greenville, Lima, Dayton, Van Wert, Richwood, and Upper Sandusky.
The Signature Series is a late closing event with no nominating fee for horses 4 years old and up. The equine participants earn and accumulate points by racing at each of the Fairs in the series events. This point system determines an overall champion at the end of the participating fairs racing season. Additionally, a cash bonus of $2,000 is provided by the Steiner Stock Farm of Lima, Ohio for both the trot and pace champion.
This year local trainer, driver, owner, John Wengerd and co-owner Amy Nicholson's six year old trotting gelding, One Final Time, is one race away from clinching the Signature Series Trot Championship and the $2,000 bonus which goes along with it. The horse has started in 7 of the 12 racing events and has a record of 2 wins, 3 seconds, 1 third, and one off the board finish.
One Final Time (Final Score-Flashing), won the Cheney-Krebehenne Trot at the Richwood Independent Fair September 2, in 2:00.4h and needs now only to start at the Wyandot County Fair in Upper Sandusky on September 11, in the Corn Huskers Trot, to clinch the trotting championship title.
Sky Tune (trainer Randal R. Miller) is presently in second place and finished fifth at the Richwood Fair which gave One Final Time an eight point lead, 60 to 52 in the Series point standings. Both had been trading the point lead over the past several weeks, so the winning effort at the Richwood Fair gave One Final Time a chance to win the Series if he starts in the final 2002 Signature Series Trotting event held at the Wyandot County Fair in Upper Sandusky, Ohio on September 11, 2002.
One Final Time clinched the 2002 Signature Series Trotting title at Upper Sandusky with a gate to wire winning effort in 2:00.4 with trainer John Wengerd in the bike. The horse won by two lengths over Marcelle Lass and driver Robert Chapman while Magnetic Sahbra and driver Del S. Miller finished third.
More information about the Signature Series, and the final point standings, can be found at their website: http://www.bright.net/~daveschmidt/sign/sign.htm so check it out!
-- Information provided by Davd Schmidt, secretary, the Signature Series