Hanover Raceway is pleased to announce a new season-ending award, named in honour of Harness Racing Hall of Fame horseman William “Bud” Fritz.
The Walkerton native had a phenomenal career as both a trainer and driver. That career included a North America Cup victory with Apaches Fame, a horse he developed, trained and drove to winnings of almost $1.8-million. He also developed A Worthy Lad, who he trained and drove to 30 consecutive victories and who was undefeated before being exported to Sweden. He developed many other notable performers, including Silver Reign, Annie Ivy, Misty Silver, Queens Arms, Tommys Becky, Silver Wraith, Trudys Omaha, Caroles Omaha and Halos Girl.
Fritz won national honours as Canada’s Horseman of the Year on three occasions — in 1986, 1989 and 1990 — and won the O’Brien Award as Canada’s Trainer of the Year in 1990. He was inducted into Canada’s Harness Racing Hall of Fame in 2001.
For more than 40 years he raced regularly at Hanover Raceway, and has multiple trainer and drivers’ titles to his credit. His burgundy and white colours continue to be a familiar sight at the Raceway, with his sons Dale and Terry racing at Hanover on a regular basis.
Hanover Raceway General Manager Steve Fitzsimmons is proud to be able to recognize Fritz in this fashion. “Bud’s record speaks for itself. More than 1,000 trainer wins and almost 2,000 driver wins and a legacy of developing some of the finest horses ever produced in this province,” said Fitzsimmons. “No one will ever forget his electrifying win in the North America Cup with Apaches Fame. He’s a legend in this industry and locally as well, just 10 minutes down the road. We could think of no better tribute to him, than to name this new award after him.”
The Bud Fritz Rising Star Award will be awarded to an up-and-coming trainer or driver who races at Hanover Raceway and who shows strong potential to continue to grow and become a star in our industry in the future.
The award will be awarded for the first time on Saturday, September 19 on Hanover Raceway’s final race date of the season.