2018..

Hey hey friends! Did you think I forgot about you all?! I feel like it has been forever since we’ve talked, and I feel like every time I write one of these I say that. Lol my b. I said I wanted to try to write more, but here’s the thing, life was SO busy this summer and these last couple of months  have been nothing short of exciting let me tell you! But don’t worry I am about to catch you up on all the fun things that have happened since I the last time I wrote.. So here goes nothing!

 

Other than writing a letter to my sister after her graduation I haven’t been on here since April, omg, that was almost 7 months ago, yiiiiiikes!

 

I tried thinking about how I want the timeline to go for this story, but per the usual I am a scattered brain more than half of the time so it is a little bit of everywhere, lol bare with me. And this may be a tad on the long side, but I hope you still take the time to read it.

 

At the end of April, as planned I moved to Indiana again, while living there I was working for Peter and Melanie Wrenn like I did the last year, they were so flexible with my traveling schedule, it was much appreciated. My summer was nothing but busy let me tell you. I typically raced at Hoosier during the week and made a trip to Scioto (ohio) on the weekends. Then if I wasn’t doing that trip I would race at Hoosier. My summer started off a little rough with the horses, lol. We had claimed one at Scioto one night and I brought him back to Indy with me, it was like ohhhhh I don’t know 2 in the morning and I couldn’t get this horse off of the trailer. I tried and tried and tried and he ended up smashing me up against the hay manger in the trailer. Luckily all he did was bruise my back, and Dani (the girl I work with) answered her phone and came to the rescue to help me get him off of the trailer.

 

Throughout the summer, I did quite a bit of traveling to the Grand Circuit events with Post Time with Mike and Mike. The Camluck Classic kicked off our live remote season at Western Fair Raceway in London Ontario. Which most of you know in the winter typically is like my second home, because that is where my dad and I raced our horses. As always they put on a great show. And while I was home for that, that was the weekend Jenna graduated high school. Which brought back sooooo many memories, because a lot of the people I graduated with all had siblings in that same grade, so it was kind of like a reunion for us all. (3 years since I graduated from the same school).

 

Mooovvvinggg on… North America Cup night at Mohawk. Now I have been to Mohawk plenty of times, but this was my first time ever attending this event. Now mind you I have attended quite a few Grand Circuit events, the larger ones including the Hambletonian and The Little Brown Jug which both have amazing crowds and fan atmosphere. But the North America Cup was different, every part of this place was packed of people including the fence that butted up to the paddock where the fans could see the horse entering and exiting the paddock, it was just awesome to see the little kids and even adults so amused as the horses entered the track.

 

An event I also helped cover was the Tetrick vs. Tetrick PRO-AM event. Where the drivers that participated in this event were on teams- New Vocations vs. Harness Horse Youth Foundation. It was a great day for both sides. Myself on behalf of Post Time with Mike and Mike presented a check to New Vocations, for the money that we had collected from from our live remotes, up until that point. And while we are on the subject of New Vocations, every month I team up with them and we feature a horse. I talk with past connections and look up the stats on the horse and publish an article to the USTA as a ‘horse highlight’ and let me tell you, I love writing them every month. I know it isn’t much, but I love being to do a little bit to give back and help promote!!

 

I was able to come home to see friends and family the weekend of Jenna’s open house, which was so nice. Everyone’s lives get so busy sometimes we don’t have time to seee everyone we would like to. Jennas graduation party gave us the opportunity to see some friends and family that we don’t get to see very often. It was an emotional day to say the least, on top of celebrating Jenna’s next step in life. Our dog passed away. She was a part of our family for 16 years, it was a very tough loss for our family. There will never be another dog like her, she was so good to our family, we miss her very much…. I did tell you a blog post or two ago that I would only get a tattoo if it had a meaning, I ended up getting a tattoo with her name, the date she passed, and a half of heart that was she is always with me.

 

The next event  I attended this summer was very bittersweet. And if you follow me on any sort of social media I was blowing that ishhh up, lol. The Farewell Jackson Event was UNBELIEVABLE. I had assumed there would be a decent crowd, but over 6,000 people showed up to this event and it was just crazy. There was 8 non betting races and the roar from the crowd every time the horses went by was simply amazing. So many smiles yet so many tears as Michigan said goodbye to another race track. My dad drive there a lot while I was growing up, and to see him not only drive there one last time, but to get one last win there was so emotional. Smiling and crying all at once when he entered the winners circle with a HUGE smile on his face made my heart so happy. It was such an incredible day and I was so happy to not only be a part of it as a horseman but as well as a broadcaster, Mike Carter and Kait Wiggins came out to cover the love the horsemen had for Jackson Harness Raceway. Horsemen were able to come on the show and tell their favorite memories from the days at Jackson.

 

The next event I attended was The Meadowlands Pace. Super fun experience, because this time when I went out East I road tripped with Mike Carter out there. We attended Breakfast with the babies Saturday morning, grabbed a quick lunch with the crew. Then I went to my hotel. And omg funny story. Well it’s funny to me anyway. So I check into my room, and I am like so tired, ready for a nap, because I raced all week and made a trip to Scioto, plus drove out to NJ. And if you know me I never pack light ESPECIALLY when I know I will be in a car, because then i know I have plenty of room to bring whatever I want LOL. So I get the keys to my room, and take my 5 bags over the elevator and I press the floor 9 button, nothing. The door closes, but I am not going anywhere, or moving, like nothing is happening so I click it like 3 or 4 more time and STILL NOTHING. Like I kid you not I was in the elevator for like 5 minutes, wondering what I had to do to get to my room. SOOO finally a couple comes into the elevator, and they pull their key out, show it to a camera and then press the floor number.. And they asked which floor I was on and I continued to tell them floor 9 and showed the key to the camera like I actually knew what I was doing. But boy did I feel stupid, and when I got out of the elevator I couldn’t stop laughing. Meadowlands Pace night was extremely fun, and we had a great broadcast. The next day I went to Chester, PA where Harrahs Philadelphia (the race track) is. Got a great tour of the place, got to see some people I haven’t seen in awhile, it was a great day as well! We weren’t able to stay long before we had to hit the road back home!

 

Had a few weeks off from the broadcasting, but I was plenty busy racing all over Ohio and at Hoosier. The next event I attended was the Hambo! This time I flew out to NJ, and let me tell you I have some bad luck when it comes to flying. I left Indy, and had a layover on Detroit but my flight was canceled due to weather. Luckily there was an early flight the next morning to Jersey and I was able to get a seat on the plane. I got to Jersey early that morning. That night I attended the Casino Night Dinner at the Meadowlands with the crew, had some good food, bet a few races and just really enjoyed the night. Saturday morning came, and it was raining all morning. It finally stopped and then sun came out  for a wonderful Hambo day! The filly ATLANTA- was dominate in the final beating the boys and it was such a great day! That night I went into the city (NYC) with the Harmons, and we rode on one of those buses that take you through the city and give you the history, it was super fun!

 

The following weekend was the Dan Patch at Hoosier Park, and this show was different from the rest of them. It was my first ever show co-hosting. I will admit it now that it is over, but I was a little nervous going into the night because you literally talk about the races for 3 hours straight, and I am usually use to just doing the interviews. I knew I was prepared but I was still a tad nervous. Once the show got going it was easy sailing from there. Honestly really think that that show made me want to continue to do broadcasting. I had a lot of doubts over the summer with everything happening in life. But I pushed them off to the side because I was so busy with working and that just took over my mind so I didn’t have to think about it. But after that show, I felt… life again? Maybe that isn’t the right saying, But I felt so.. Happy and confident about it everything, I got so many calls and messages that night, it was truly appreciated.

 

The next event I attended was not with Post Time with Mike and Mike, I had my first on camera event at Scioto Downs for Super Night. The weather conditions were horrible, but it was still a lot of fun, great racing and a super awesome experience with great people!

 

Jug weeeeeek was next! And who doesn’t love jug week?! I was able to balance my whole week between paddocking, broadcasting/media, and just plain having a good time! I raced Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday and I have never paddocked or raced a horse during Jug week, so there is a first for everything. Lol. Wednesday I did some media as well, I took photos and was in charge of the social media for Post Time with Mike and Mike. Wednesday night I attended the Pre-jug party for New Vocations and helped with the event before attending the horsemens party, which again was fun as always. Thursday was a busy day! Jug day! SO so so much fun! Between the races, and taking photos, I also joined Dave Brower on the Jug broadcast for a little bit! I ended up staying that night and leaving early early Friday morning to get back to work. After work and a much needed nap. It was time for the Hoosier Park Pacing Derby, where we broadcasted live on scene and I was in-charge of all the interviewing, which I love doing, I find it so much fun to go out and talk to all of the connections of our amazing athletes.

 

I didn’t have much time to rest because that Sunday I was off to Lexington Kentucky for two weeks to race some horses. Now at first I really didn’t want to go, I wanted to stay back. But I ended up having a really great time! Between racing our horses down there, watching the Grand Circuit racing, and going out with friends and just having a good time! It had been awhile since I had that much fun. And it was just a good time!

 

All the fun in Lexington eventually came to an end and it was time to go back to Indy- but this time it was only for 4 days. I packed up my things in the barn and at the apartment because I was getting ready to move home. But first, I took a road trip with my momma and Brianna to New York City where I attended the Yonkers International Trot, and wow! What a great day, the hospitality was amazing, the races were amazing, and the Trot was so exciting. I was able to co-host with Mike Bozich this time and I just had a blast! I really enjoy co-hosting with these guys- mainly because I just really talking about horses… LOL

 

After the Yonkers Trot I took a couple of days to move all my stuff home, had a relaxing couple of weeks off, volunteering at the elementary school. Then it was time to cover the Breeders Crown.. And that was bittersweet nonetheless. It was my my last show with Post Time with Mike and Mike as a full time employee- the week prior to the Breeders Crown I accepted a job at the Meadowlands… and I LOVE MY JOB! I do paddock interviews with the horsemen, help run social media, promotion and contest host, along with coming up with ideas for horsemen /fan interaction. The people I work with are awesome! I just really couldn’t be more thankful for this opportunity. I will still do some work with Post Time with Mike and Mike during the off time time at the Meadowlands and still keep in touch with them all of the time. I do owe them a huge thank you though, because they were the first two to believe in me and really get me going and I am so grateful for that.

 

So after starting the job at the Meadowlands until now, I have kept myself pretty busy. I am in Jersey on the weekends and this week I started school back again. So I have a pretty busy schedule to say the least. Was able to be home with my whole family for the holidays which was nice. For new years eve I went over The Meadows to visit friends along with watching the GOAT Foiled Again make his last start ever before his retirement. That was super fun! I also attended the drivers challenge at Miami Valley in Ohio, what a great event put on by them for the fans. I was lucky to be able to cover it for the MidWest Harness Report and it was a lot of fun!

 

I really couldn’t be more thankful with where I am at in life right now while working towards all the things I want. I won’t lie there are some days where I sit there and think… I haven’t graduated college yet, I am nowhere near “stable” in life. I see all the time on social media people my age graduating college, getting married, having kids, and I am over here like- uh what do I want for dinner? But I have come to realize this.. Life is not a competition, you are living life for you, and accepting all things that come with it, the good and the bad. Everyone has a different timeline in life.. and that doesn’t mean you are doing something wrong, as long as you’re happy and living life the way you want to- you are doing everything right. Don’t compare yourself to others, I read something the other day… “comparison is the thief of joy” and that is so true. Because we are all here to do something different with our lives.. No two people are the exact same. Okay..enough about that, the point was, as long as you’re happy with life, you’re doing just fine.

 

So with 2018 I really wanted to focus on myself, my physical and mental health. And that’s exactly what I did- November was the first time in over a year I when I went to the doctors, I weighed in healthy and my doctor wasn’t worried about me. And it felt good.

 

A year ago today if you would have asked me what I would be doing today, I wouldn’t even have answered you. I would have been at a loss for words saying that I didn’t care, didn’t want to know, and leave me alone. Jump ahead to today, and I learned that I can’t sweat the small stuff, I don’t have control over every little thing in life and that’s okay. It isn’t selfish to take care of yourself, and work on yourself and put yourself first. Laziness gets you nowhere in life. If you want it, you work your butt off for it. How much you put into something shows in the result. No half ass, take all task seriously. Introduce yourself to someone new, step outside of your comfort zone. Positivity is key, having a good attitude only helps you. Hard work does pay off, people do pay attention. Be you. Do you. For you. Happiness is choice. – I will never understand why people walk around miserable all of the time.- Smiling is always better than not.

 

I really learned how to grow as a person over this past year. I learned that some people aren’t who they really say they are. And some people are really good at putting on a show for others. But that’s okay. Don’t worry about them- focus on you and you’ll be just fine.

 

Okay.. I think that is enough blabbering for now. This turned out way longer than expected, but I guess that’s what I get for not writing regularly LOL.. I am a little behind BUT hopefully shortly I can finally finishes my 2019 goals- and I will be able to share them with you!

 

But for now, I hope you all had a great holiday season, a happy new year! And that you are out there enjoying life to the fullest!

 

Thank you for reading my post! Until next time friends, keep smiling!

 

God Bless!

 

Love always,

 

jesssss

The Next Chapter..

Hey hey everyone!

 

Today my baby sister is graduating high school and I took some time to think about what I was feeling when I graduated high school, in hopes that I could give her a little bit of advice.

This is my first ‘vlog’ & I am by no means a pro at this, lol. & will probably get more embarrassment out of this than anything, but oh well I do not care. I wanted to try something new, because I want to expand more into the video aspect of media. (video posted to facebook page)

…………..anywho back to the purpose of this.

Jenna,

I am so proud of the person you have become so far and I can’t wait to see how far you will go in life. After you walk across the stage today a new chapter in your life is beginning. Make the most of it. Do not be like me and worry about every little thing that happens or that could happen or that won’t happen. The future is in your hands, do want YOU want to do. Don’t have any regrets. Live in the moment, stop on the side of the road and watch the sunset, focus on whats right in front of you, pay attention to what is going on around you, don’t look past the little details in things. Don’t wish for time to pass, have fun, try new things, travel. Use your head & be smart. Please take care of yourself, don’t over do it. There is no due date to be done with school, take your time, if you don’t like your major, change it, you don’t want to wake up the rest of your life not liking your job, do you? Take pride in everything you do, life is a painting and you are in charge of the paint brush. Always be true to yourself, self love and self worth go a long way. Trust me.  I am your big sister, I will always have your back, I promise. If you ever and I mean ever need anything, someone to talk to, someone to come pick you up, anything, please know I will always, always, always, be here for you. I know we fight and don’t always get along, but that’s what sisters do. Congratulations on graduating high school, I am so proud of you and can not wait to experience this next part of your life with you. I love you more than you’ll ever know baby sister.

Keep smiling, love always..

-Jess

Every mile a memory..

hey hey everyone!

 

The last time we talked, or I guess I did all the talking & you read, I was doing a year in review for myself. & I said I was going to try and write once a month & yeah that failed. Lol, it’s not like I didn’t have the time to, I just didn’t have the words. So with that being said, I’m kind of going to jump backwards & tell you something I did when I turned 20 & then come back to this year. & if you know me, you know I don’t always finish a complete thought without thinking about something else. So we will see where this goes. I hope y’all can enjoy.

 

Jumping back to before I turned 20, I made a list. I named the list “20 things Jess wants to accomplish in her 20’s”. Why? Because I’ve always been a goal setter, dream chaser, & I love traveling & seeing new things. I think that sometimes we get so caught up in everyday life whether it be school or work. You forget to take time out of your life to enjoy yourself. & you can’t deny it. I know & have seen it first hand in the harness racing business.. Example, my father, growing up he missed a lot of things going on because he was always racing and had a barn of anywhere from 15-30 horses. But, he does take 1 week a year to go to Florida, everyone deserves a vacation. Okay back to the list, there’s a little bit of everything on here & over the past year there have been many things I’ve wanted to add to it, but i decided to stay with my original list. So here’s the list:

  1. Graduate with bachelors
  2. Go to Las Vegas
  3. Go on a cruise
  4. Travel to a different country across the world
  5. Have a career & buy a house
  6. Get trainers license
  7. Go to Grand Canyon/ Horse Shoe Bend, AZ
  8. Explore Oneonta Gorge, Oregon
  9. Swim with the dolphins
  10. Visit Watkins Glen State Park, New York
  11. Visit Washington D.C.
  12. Be in Nashville during Music festival
  13. Get a tattoo
  14. Try the whole relationship thing
  15. Purchase a new Jeep
  16. Get an award
  17. Go up in a hot air balloon
  18. Meet Luke Glendening
  19. Go to Hollywood & stand under the sign
  20. Be HAPPY

There is no certain order to this list. I just want to accomplish it before I turn 30. Who knows if it will happen, so far THIS YEAR I’ve been able to cross off a few things, so let’s get to it:

January:

January was a bit of an odd month. Other than school I didn’t really do much I just tried to focus on myself and find my happiness again, which mind you is harder than you think. I am not saying I hate life or myself. I am saying that I was in a dark spot while dealing with somethings and I lost myself in the experience of it.  I was officially diagnosed with an “anxiety disorder” in which my doctor tried me on a few different medications to help me & they all made me extremely sick. Like unbearable pains in my stomach, I wouldn’t eat, would get sick, couldn’t function as a human, could hardly get out of bed. It was like absolutely horrible & I never want to experience it ever again. So with that being said, they still haven’t found the right kind of medication for me. Anywho, on January 20th I attended the 2017 Michigan Harness Horsemens banquet, where I received the “Appreciation” award. I was so humbled, honored, thankful, & grateful to be able to receive this award. Michigan has taken a huge decline over the years, I’ve seen & experienced it first hand. & there isn’t anything I wouldn’t do to get it back to even half of what it use to be. It’s truly heartbreaking. But, the people from Michigan, my home, will always be my people, the outpouring love, care, & support I get from everyone to follow my dreams is simply uplifting and those people aren’t just from Michigan they are from everywhere. I have been so lucky to meet people across North America over the years in my travels, each and every one of you have put an impact on my life.  To put into words how thankful I am is impossible. So for that matter a thank you is line for those who nominated me, those who thought I deserved the award, thank you to those who congratulated me, & thank you to those who helped me get the award, to help me get where I am at today & continue to be by my side & push me to better myself. You are all amazing people & I am grateful to have each & every single one of you in my life.

Moving on to February..

Most of my friends on social media saw I went to Vegas to celebrate my 21st birthday, thee ultimate birthday party let me just tell you. Las Vegas was simply amazing, so beautiful there. People hear Las Vegas they think gambling & drinking but this girl had way more fun touring all of the hotels & casinos & seeing all the beautiful scenery. Waterfalls, flowers, malls, roller coasters, stamped cement, & street shows. The list goes on & my crazy horse freak self was able to go hiking in the mountains with wild horses. & explore the mountains. Absolutely breathtaking. I think from time to time we often forget to take a step back, a break, & just look at what’s in front of us, Nature. God’s creation is so beautiful. I was very fortunate enough to have my grandma, grandpa, mom, dad, 2 of my very close friends Theresa & Mariah & also 2 of my cousins from New York; Catherine & Donald join me on the trip, it was filled with nothing but laugher & fun. Seriously a trip to remember & I will definitely being going back!

Ahhhh… March..

Started off this month with a bang, my dude, Navy Lieutenant pulled through with a win. & an impressive one at that. & the reason I am mentioning this is because this horse as come such a long way, he had so many complications my dad wanted to get rid of him so many times, but I convinced him not to, to keep him & let me get him back to the races & that’s what I did. & he has improved tremendously. Gives 110% every time he steps on the race track, sure there are weeks where he doesn’t get a good trip or drive, but he

loves his job & has truly helped me develop into a better groom because of all the curve balls he’s thrown. As long as he’s safe & sound… I’m smiling. Another part of my life I am going to add to this month, is personal. & I am by NO mean sharing this because I want someone to feel sorry for me, think I want attention, or look at me differently. To me it’s another obstacle life has thrown at me & there may be someone out there who reads this & is going through something similar to me & we can get through it together or reach out to each other for advice. Since I was a freshman in high school I’ve always had trouble eating. Side note, I DO NOT starve myself & I DO NOT make myself sick after I eat to lose weight. But when I do eat my stomach gets very upset, there are sometimes I do get sick, other times I get feel horrible after I eat and have to go lay down right away. & if you know me or have ever been out to eat with me you notice I don’t eat much… some say I eat like a bird lol. I have seen a number of specialist at U of M & they told me my stomach was just smaller than someone my age. If that’s true or not I’m not sure. I am not going to go through & give you all the details because well that would just take too long. Anywho.. I had a check up at my doctor to try & figure out an anxiety medication that would help me & not make me sick. He had noticed the weight loss I have been having.. again this is not on purpose. He had diagnosed me with an “eating disorder” because of the low in take on food & constant weight loss. I myself do not believe I have an eating disorder, I eat when I’m hungry. Who cares if it isn’t a lot. & if it’s literally chicken & noodles everyday, at least I am eating. Okay moving on. Towards the end of the month I decided one day I was going to get a tattoo. So sure enough I made a tattoo appointment for the next day. Now, funny story.. I’m what 21 now & until I was 19 I made my mom go with me to get a shot because I am TERRIFIED of a needle going into my body. Horses, doesn’t bother me, shit I can give a shot. But when you stick a needle into a human, I’m out lmao! So when I was going to get this tattoo I was like all freaked out, but being 100% honest, it did not hurt as bad as I thought it was going to, sure it hurt at times but it wasn’t bad at all. & yes I had someone there to hold my hand, ahah Side note- I would never get a tattoo if it didn’t mean anything & there will be tattoos down the road I get, but they will all have meaning & won’t be huge & all over my body. This tattoo says “strength” & it is above my pant line next to my hip. Why the word strength? Here is why- it’s a reminder to me, to be strong through anything life throws at me. I recently went through something that completely tore me apart. & I still have trouble with it. & it’s something I’d rather not go into detail about, so I’m not. But I will say, for the sake of myself I had to be strong through it. Even if there were more days than not that I felt like I was drowning on the inside. Without strength you can’t say no to something you do want to do, you can’t say yes to doing something new that you may want to do but have been scared to do. Strength through the hard times, the good times, the bad times, the sad times, & the happy times. Now- if you’re like my father, Pete he now says it’s like me sumo wrestling name.. smh that’s Pete for ya! Lol!

What will April bring?

Well I am currently writing this on a plane, on my way home from Florida. I left 80 degree weather to go home to snow so that I can make it to class tomorrow. I’m either smart for going to school or dumb for leaving the warm weather. Lol! So this month I am majorly focusing on my health, because it’s the most important thing right now. It doesn’t just affect my everyday life currently, but if I don’t get it under control it will affect me many years down the road. I am also going to be spending a lot of time packing up to move to Indiana for the summer to go back to work for Pete & Melanie Wrenn, such awesome people for work for! & that also means summer is coming. Thank… god! I can’t handle much more of winter! Also

So over the past three months I crossed off 3 things on my list: Get an award, go to Las Vegas, & get a tattoo. Last year I also experienced “the try the whole relationship thing” but I’m not going to cross it off my list because I’m sure when I’m ready, whenever that may be, I’ll want to experience it again… lol. Although the other day I said if Zac Efron wasn’t my next boyfriend I was going to be alone the rest f my life. LMAO I said that, but I was so kidding.

I hope if you read this, you enjoyed it & were maybe able to take something from it. I promise it won’t be so long until you hear from me again! LOL! & to  ALL that took time to read this & even if you didn’t & get skipped the end & those who didn’t even read it won’t know it, I hope you are doing well!

Ooooooh! One more thing for my friends that are all over the place! Post Time with Mike and Mike has released the 2018 live remote schedule! Hop over to their website to check it out! We are coming to a track near you and we can not wait to get the season underway!

 

Until next time friends, keep smiling!

 

God bless

 

Love always

-jess

 

2017..

I wrote this blog, then re read it & realized that there is no proper grammar, there is no set timeline, no interview, no plot to the story, it’s just random thoughts & views, a few side stories here & there but mainly me just simply taking a few minute to reflect on 2017. I hope you all enjoy.




As we start a new year, I look back on 2017. It brought me new friendships, relationships, hellos, & goodbyes. & while I was experiencing it I thought it was my best year yet. And well I take time to reflect on it, of course people have the good with the bad, the happy with the sad, & the smiles with the heart breaks. I learned that everything doesn’t turn out as planned or as how you thought it was going to. You don’t know people as well as you think you do. Including yourself. And sometimes no matter what you do for someone or any situation, it’s not good enough. And some things will have to be left broken. Does it hurt? Of course, but it’s something we all go through. I have never really been an emotional person but this past year taught me it’s okay to be. It’s okay to let people in, to care more for someone than you do yourself. But you have to remember to take care of yourself as well, because as much as you want said person/people to always be there with you, they may end up leaving. Unfortunately we can’t tell what is going to happen in the future, who will be there, who won’t, & who will come back. I often find myself stuck between “if it’s meant to be it will be” & “if something didn’t work out it never will”. This is where my ability to over think every little possible thing kicks in. Like I’m not kidding I over think situations that’s aren’t even real & that could never be real. (What. Is. Wrong. With. Me.) And destroys almost every thought I have. Some people, like myself, almost always have to have a plan, it’s extremely hard for me to live in the moment & enjoy what’s in front of me because I am trying to look ahead & be ready. Which in reality everything always changes & a lot of times things don’t go as planned. I suffer from anxiety, I developed it some time in high school, it affects me on a day to day basis, everything I do & even my health. For some people admitting they have anxiety is extremely tough, it makes them feel weak. For me I just try & hide it.. Anxiety has become a part of me & I can be so rotten to deal with from time to time because of it. The people that knew how to put up with me and be there for me are the real MVP’s. I have no control over it at all. The smallest of situations can trigger it, school & racing horses, for the love of god if the wrong pillow cases are on the wrong pillows it upsets me. When I change my routine on how I do something it bothers me. It also really bugs me when people say “don’t worry about it, don’t think about it, you’ll be fine” UM HELLO, all I do I worry, all I do is think. I hope for the best, even though it feels like more often than not I’m just let down, but yet I still try & prepare for the worst. Alright enough dwelling, lets get to the fun part!



I am extremely grateful for the opportunities I had this year, being able to follow my dreams & work on my career goals. Throughout the year I have been going to school working towards my 3 degrees. I felt & still feel like I am never going to graduate, but I just have to keep reminding myself it will all be worth it in the long run, keep going, keep pushing, don’t give up. School can be very stressful on its own, let alone while working. This summer I had moved to Indiana to work full time (with the horses) for people I’ve known my whole life. As always my work friends became family. One of my favorite things to do while traveling is meeting new people, & leaving with new friends. Peter & Melanie Wrenn (the people I worked for) were great to me all summer, they allowed me to not only be able to take time off & go home to see me family. But also gave me time off to travel to Grand Circuit races & there I was able to interact with the top & best in the business. Huge thank you & shout out to Mike Bozich & Mike Carter from Post Time with Mike and Mike for making this happen & allowing me to join them during their live remotes. They have really helped me grow, not only as a person but my skills in the broadcasting aspect of my future career goals & I couldn’t thank them enough! They are always there when I have a question, hear me out on my comments, and always give me new opportunities.  It started in May at the Molson Pace at Western Fair Raceway, London Ontario, & from there I made my round about way, in July I attended the Meadowlands Pace. In August I was very fortunate enough to go to the Hambletonian. Let me just tell you how amazing that was. The crowd was unbelievable, the atmosphere was amazing, & the racing was incredible! Even got to take a quick pic & chat with thee John Campbell! So cool! From there, there was the Dan Patch & Hoosier Park Pacing Derby. Also I was able to take pictures during Jug week. I’m no photographer, but it’s always exciting capturing moments not only of the people and their reaction/excitement but of the amazing athletes we work with. My year ended with Breeders Crown week at Hoosier Park. & being so close to home I was able to spend the whole week before down there, to talk to the connections of many horses & again snap some pictures. I did a few side articles for my blog, & I can’t thank the horsemen I worked with enough for letting me sit & chat with them. You guys help my dreams come true. I was also given the opportunity to write my first ever USTA article, which was so exciting to me! I was also able to talk with all of the connections of one of my all time favs, All Bets Off. As classy as they come, not just the horse but the connections of him also! So thankful they were able to take time out of their busy day to talk with me about All Bets Off! After a busy week of being able to interact with the best of the best, the weekend of racing approached. This was the 2nd Breeders Crown I was attending, & I was just so excited. As always I was nervous just like I get before every live remote, but the Breeders Crown Racing is just so exciting to watch. It’s the best of the best and from a horsemens perspective I kind of understand the feelings other horsemen have going into the night, you work you ass off all day everyday, all year round to prep your horse for any race let alone the Breeders Crown, it’s a huge accomplishment. & the reward of seeing your horse participate I’m sure is second to none. People outside of the business don’t understand how much work, dedication, blood, sweat, & tears, we put into our horses day in & day out. Whether it’s a 4 claimer or a Breeders Crown contender they all get taken care of a loved like a pet. My job at the Breeders Crown was winner circle reaction from the winning connections & I love seeing people happy & smiling so I was really excited to be in the winners circle. It’s a busy place to be but the horsemen are so good about being able to get a word in with them afterwards because it helps promote the business! One thing I do have to say about being on live remotes after the race is that for one you have to be ready & already know what to say and you only have a few short minutes to prepare if you want the interview unique. You really have to pay attention to the race, sure there are your common questions you can ask, but you want to make each interview different & special. I also learned you have to word your questions exactly how you think them and how you want them answered, because they can come out the wrong way & well that could end badly. I experienced that at the Breeders Crown, & let me tell you. Not cool. But hey, we all live & learn. Although I was like wanting to never interview again, I did. I kept going & now I can look past it & I can use it as a learning experience. The Breeders Crown ended my 2017 live remote season & I can’t even put into words how much fun I had, how thankful I am, & how grateful I feel to have been given the opportunities I had. It was truly amazing. I was able to live the best of both worlds. The horsemen aspect of it, working with the horses. And the broadcasting part of it being able to promote the business, the people & the athletes.




The end of the year approached quickly, but it wasn’t the best way to end the year, for me anyways. I struggled with a situation (that I’d rather not talk too much about) that completely tore my to pieces, heck I’m still struggling with the same situation. I know one day I’ll be okay but for now I take it day by day. & it almost feels like I’ll never go back to myself. Although I’m sure I will, it just doesn’t feel that way right now. – to add to my year ending, in 2015 I bought a horse. She gave me a run for my money, to say the least, but she just wasn’t going to quite make it & I had to say goodbye to the last 2 years of my life, the work I put into her.. it’s like it was all for nothing. I know it is a part of the business, I’ve owned & sold horses before but it just felt as if it was a huge failure (especially with other things going on, it just added to it). Saying goodbye was one of the hardest goodbyes I had to face. Holiday season is suppose to be happy & cheerful.. but for me up until I was able to spend time with my whole family, I was extremely down on myself. I’m not going to sugar coat it & I’m not afraid to admit it. I know I’m only 20 years old, but I hit a low spot in my life, isolated myself, I didn’t want to have to deal with people asking me how I was, it’s just a general gesture yet, I lied every time I said “I’m good, how are you?” I wanted nothing to do with anything, I didn’t want to leave my bed, let alone the house. I let so many sad & negative emotions take over my body, I was confused, lost, it almost felt like I was broken. I was so weak & unhealthy. I let it get too bad. I have to get back to myself, become healthy again, focus on what’s in front of me, and set goals. But most importantly find my happiness again. Find the reasons in life that make you smile. Hold on to the memories that are in the past, but try not to dwell on the “what if” situations. I have to start looking` at the bigger picture. A lot of this is way easier said than done. Some days are better than others. But I do have some pretty amazing people in my life that check on me & for that I am forever grateful.




2018 is here. & honestly I am not a strong believer in “new year new me” & a lot of people use it as an excuse to start over. Good for them. But it’s not quite for me. I will say I do need to get my focus back & focus on things that are going to matter later down the road. The bigger picture. Do I have a plan for 2018? Uh not exactly. & yes it does give me a little anxiety. But my main goal is to try & live in the moment for 2018. To keep setting goals but never to over look what is right in front of me. I will continue to go to school (insert eye rolling emoji here) & work towards the degrees I am pursuing. I do know I will be joining Post Time With Mike and Mike on their live remotes again, which is always exciting! I turn 21 in February & I am taking a trip to Vegas so I am really looking forward to that. I really want to see how many things I can cross off of my “20 things I want to accomplish in my 20’s”. So we shall see where this year takes me.




To the people that have helped me get where I am at & continue to help me better myself, thank you. To my support system that puts up with me on a daily basis, thank you. To my friends & family that helped make 2017 a unique year, thank you. To the ones who stood by my side, thank you. To all the people I met & became a new friend, thank you for coming into my life.


Happy New Year to all!

I wish nothing but the best for every single one of you.

Take care & god bless

Love always
– jess

Macomber sends out 2 in the Breeders Crown final

Girls rule. The current leading trainer at Hoosier Park, Jamie Macomber makes her training debut in the Breeders Crown as she sends out Carols Z Tam and Beckhams Z Tam. “When you start a new adventure you always have high hopes and big dreams.” Macomber said. Jamie was a part of the Ron Burke crew as she was in charge of the Indiana barn, at the age of 30 she decided to start training horses full time and her career has really taken off since she made the decision. “Did I dream about this? Yes. Did I think this would happen? Yes. This soon? No, I never dreamed that last year, a year later I would be starting in the Breeders Crown” added Jamie.

Everyone works so hard all year long to make it to the Breeders Crown. And this year it just so happened to be at Macombers home track. “Even though Carol is a good filly, who knows I may not have shipped her anywhere else to race.” Jamie said as we kicked off the interview about the impressive eliminations by her three year olds. I was curious to see what Jamie had thought about these two when they had first came to her. “Beckham as a two year old showed Wilbur (former trainer) a lot of good horse qualities. Wilbur had me prepared that Beckham was a good horse. He was still green at the beginning of his two year old year, but he had the speed, and the ability, we just had to put it all together. We had high hopes for him to be in the Breeders Crown.” Jamie explains. “We staked a bunch of our three year olds, just in case, because it was here, we would have been upset if we had these nice three year olds and couldn’t race them.” she added. Carol on the other hand took Jamie by a little bit of surprise “I didn’t think she would, but she just kept getting better and better and better. She has also had more problems per say than Beckham. She has a huge heart and when she goes behind that gate she is all business.” said Jamie.

Carols Z Tam was a hard charging 4th in her elimination. “I was probably the most nervous I have ever been in my entire life, I thought my heart was going to beat out of my chest when I was standing up by the watch deck. She was the only one (other than Blazin Britches whom raced a few times at Hoosier) who races there consistently, so I knew we had that on our side. She knows when she hits the three quarter pole it is time to go to work. But she did have the nine hole, so you never now what kind of road trouble you’re going to get into.” Macomber explains.

Beckhams Z Tam was sitting last at the three quarter pole, coming his last quarter in 26 seconds, only to get beat two lengths for the win and finished third. Another impressive elimination effort. “Beckham on the other hand, always has so much pressure on him every other week, to beat Rock N Tony or Meadowbrook Tiger. I’ve learned to relax a little bit with Beckham and not put so much pressure on him, so I thought to myself ‘we’ve got this under control, we can beat four horse.’ Our goal was to just get into the final and not necessarily win our eliminations.” Jamie explained.

Now that both of Jamie’s horses had made it into the final, the waiting began to see what post positions they were going to draw. Carols Z Tam draws post 6 and Beckhams Z Tam draws post 5. “I wouldn’t mind seeing both of them in the middle of the pack and out sprint everybody home.” Jamie explained as we talked about the post positions, she is happy with what they drew and sees it as an advantage to both of her starters.

The Breeders Crown is the biggest race of the year or they wouldn’t say “It all comes down to the Breeders Crown.” The mixed emotions from all of the connections have to be overwhelming, the nervous, the excitement, the happiness and even the heart break. “It would mean so much to me to win the Breeders Crown, with such great people, including mu husband, it would be just a dream come true.” she remarks.

Ryan Macedonio refers to Jamie as “The queen of Hoosier Park” which if you have met Jamie you would know she is the kindest and nicest person out there. Always smiling and asking how you are. Best of luck to Jamie and Ricky Macomber as they send Carols Z Tam out in the 3 year old filly pace final, race 9 post 6, Friday night and Beckhams Z Tam will start from post 5 in the three yr old colt pace final, race 11, which both take place at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino.

Also be sure to tune into http://www.posttimewithmikeandmike.com for LIVE & FULL coverage of the Breeders Crown final.

#IKnowWhereIllBe #ItAllComesDownToTheBreedersCrown

Beckhams Z Tam / Carols Z Tam IMG_6044

 

Breeders Crown, Ella Christina

“The last three weeks my focus has been on Ella and the Breeders Crown. This is what we all worked for all year long.” Surick exclaimed. Nick runs his own training operation in New Jersey along with owning some horses with other trainers and has even thrown some thoroughbreds in the mix as well. But all of that means nothing to him right now as he is getting ready to make his training debut in the Breeders Crown with Ella Christina in the three year old filly pace. Last year, Nick teamed up with trainer Erv Miller and sent  Someomensomewhere to post as his first start as an owner in the Breeders Crown, she ended up winning the two year old filly pace final, with an exciting and close finish.

Ella Christina was had a barn change earlier this year. I was curious to see what Nick thought of her when he first got her, what kind of stock was he dealing with? “We kind of bought her as just an overnight race horse. I dropped her in a non winners of 6 at Yonkers and she didn’t get in.”  Surick said. “The Adioo Volo was coming up and last year it was a five horse field and I kind of thought it was going to be the same way this year because people might be afraid of Blazin Britches. They actually ended up drawing 17 horses and I drew the eight hole, my plan wasn’t working out as well as I wanted it to going into it, but she ended up splitting into the easier division and winning at 50/1, after her first start she was pretty much a free horse.” Nick added.

Ella Christina was a participant in The Jugett elimination finished 4th, made her way into the final. She drew the 7 hole and was parked the whole mile. She then went to the Lady Maud  at Yonkers, where she was the 3/5 favorite and was unfortunately scratched. She also competed in The Courageous Lady, “I was disappointed in her the night of the race, then Monday morning came and I pulled her blood and she had tied up. We had shipped her five hours to Northfield Park the morning of the race and I don’t think it was her style.” Surick said.

Okay now lets gets to business, Ella Christina had a very impressive elimination, shook loose the last 16th of the mile to win in 1:51.0 coming the last quarter 26.3. Paying $72.00 to win. “I was hoping for no elimination in the Breeders Crown because I thought she needed a break. But we only had to beat one for the final. I knew she was talented enough to race with these horses because she has beaten them before, I just didn’t think she would win that night, because our plan was to just trip her out from behind and make it to the final.” Surick explained.

Ella Christina for driver Tim Tetrick draws post three in the final, Nick says “If we could have picked our post position we would have picked the three. I can honestly say that right now, today and after the elimination this is the best she has been attitude wise, weight wise, soundness wise, everything right now is lining up to be perfect for her going into this race and we just need a little bit of racing luck.”

“Everyone dreams of being a part of a horse that makes it to the Breeders Crown, when I started training horses I never thought that I would actually make it here.” Nick says as he reflects on this amazing opportunity. “The number of people that make it to this level are very slim and I have been very fortunate to have a great team to support me and amazing owners that have backed me up from the start and every step of the way. We’ve all grown together. I think teamwork is very important and I am very thankful for my team, and that everyone gets along great.”

“It all comes down to the Breeders Crown, this is what we all work for and this is my focus. Everything that crosses my mind has to do with one horse. It would be absolutely amazing to win my training debut in the Breeders Crown.”

Best of luck to Nick, Tim and of course Ella Christina as they go to the gate in race 9 from post 3 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino for the 3 year old filly pace Breeders Crown final.

Also be sure to tune into http://www.posttimewithmikeandmike.com for FULL & LIVE coverage of the Breeders Crown.

#ItAllComesDownToTheBreedersCrown #IKnowWhereIllBeIMG_4734

Kramer wins 8,000

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Photo Credit: Jessica Otten (Brad Kramer with T Red on May 5th, 2017 at Northville Downs)

“I knew I liked winning, when I made my very first driving a start, a winning one.” –Brad Kramer

Most people set goals in life and work every day towards them. For every person they are different and sometimes you may not even know what you’re accomplishing until it arrives to you. I recently sat down with driver and trainer Brad Kramer whom reached his 8,000th driving win on April 29th, 2017 at Northville Downs. It was the last race of the night, Brad knew he was at 7,997 wins going into the trace card and had to win three races that night to get to 8,000. “A lot of people get stuck on a number near the milestone, for me, it always come up quick. My wife really wanted to be here for the win, but she didn’t end up coming. I knew I had a chance to win three out of the first four races, I ended up winning two. After that he rest of my line up didn’t look to promising so when it happened I was shocked.” Kramer said.  Not only was he the longest shot on the board, but he was sitting last going around the last turn heading into the stretch. “Everyone scooted over and I came up the inside for the win, of course I was excited, I wasn’t expecting that.” Brad won the last race of the night with Mystical Beach for trainer Dani Neil. Brad has come a long way since he started driving horses at the age of 30. Brad was my neighbor for over ten years, but when I got the chance to actually sit down and talk to him about his life in this business it was interesting, his life story isn’t quite like everyone else in the business. Brad is a first generation horseman, by choice, growing up he had no involvement with the horses. “I quit college at the age of 19 and got a job at Shiawassee farms cleaning stalls. I started working for Bill Deters who was a fantastic guy, he really made me love the business. I worked for him for about 6 years.” explained Kramer. He wasn’t like most, he didn’t start driving horses right away, he started at the bottom by cleaning stalls and he worked his way up, he was little delayed but it has seemed to work out for him. Like most in this industry we were born into the business and it’s in our blood, a lot of us have family that has helped us along the way and guided us, for Brad that was different. He had many people help him along the way, but he did a lot of it on his own. “And for that I’m the proudest of. I had to fight to get where I am at today.” Over the last 30 years Kramer has drove all over North America, he says he prefers a half mile track because he considers himself an aggressive driver, “I like to leave the gate a lot. But I don’t have a hard time adapting to the bigger tracks when I go to them, just gear down a little bit and save the speed from the horse.” There is a track that does stand out to him, that is Saratoga. “It was a nice place to be, the people were great and I had some luck out there. I had good people to drive for who had nice horses, it was a good experience.” Kramer said. Brad doesn’t just drive horses, growing up around him he always had a barn full of horses, especially the babies. When I mentioned his winter job, training babies for Casie Coleman in South Florida, the smile on his face really said it all. “I love training babies and I love working for Casie Coleman and sitting behind some of the best horses in North America, it’s an awesome feeling.” I asked Brad if he preferred training over driving, his response was “when I first got started I never really thought I would become a driver because it takes so much to break into and I wasn’t going to hurt myself trying to become a driver. I knew I could be a good enough trainer to make money, then when I started winning with my own, not only did people want me to train their horses for them, there were also people who wanted to me to catch drive their horses. And from there it kind of just kicked off both my training and driving career. I love doing both. And I always loved the feeling of taking care of and doing well with my own horses.” Everyone has someone they look up to, Brad said “Other than Bill Deters, there is one other man that stands out to me, Leroy Copeland, he really took my under his wing and pushed me to always keep going. He was an amazing horseman and all around a great man, taught me a lot, not only about taking care of the horses but training them also, he really helped me get started as a driver and trainer. If it wasn’t for him I probably wouldn’t be where I am at today.” Mr. Kramer has driven in many races over the past 30 years, I know as an owner all wins are exciting to me. When I asked Brad if he had one certain win that stuck out, he wasn’t hesitant at all to answer. “The most exciting win I ever had, my best friend that really got my started on my own training was Bobby Mar from New Jersey, who passed away at a young age. The horse that turned out to be my first State Champion here in Michigan, was named Baha Bobby, named after him. He drew the 8 hole in the 10 horse field final at Saginaw Raceway going for a purse of $117,000.” Kramer paused for a moment and with a smile on his face he said, “I won it and we set the track record”. I could tell he was still very proud of that moment not just because of the money or getting the win, but because it was for his good friend Bobby. “It was the best feeling I’ve ever had,” Brad said. Some people don’t realize all the hard work and dedication it does into training and driving horses. To some 8,000 wins is just a number, to others, like Brad, it is something special. “Not many drivers make it to 8,000, but I am one of them that did, to me it’s a great accomplishment and something I will always be proud of.”

Congratulations  Brad, here’s to many more!