Local favorite Bernie continues to surprise connections at MGM Northfield Park
At 0h20, on January 29, 2023 • By NORTHFIELD PARK
A private purchase in 2020 has led to a love like no other for Bernie’s connections. The pacer has also become a local favorite in Northeast Ohio. Sunday evening (Jan. 29), he returns to the $18,000 Open Pace looking for redemption after being defeated last Sunday.
Judging him from his purse earnings of $442,009, you would think that Bernie (Ryan Stahl) had a stakes-filled card with record performances. Still, the hard-hitting gelding has done all of his earning against upper-level conditioned company throughout his stellar career. A late bloomer, he began racing in his 3-year-old season, and after a slow beginning, he took off.
While Bernie is smaller than most of his competitors, he has a huge personality and has built up a real following that grows with each race.
“It’s amazing how many people reach out to us, asking when he is going to race again,” said trainer Jessica Millner.
According to his connections, he is a very laid-back racehorse who takes care of himself.
“He lays down a lot, and we keep him next to his “girlfriend” to keep him happy,” said Millner.
Owned by Pod Stable and Millner, Bernie took an immediate liking to MGM Northfield Park, winning in only his second start for his new connections against the conditioned company. From that point, it was all systems go for the son of Big Jim, who continued to forge his way up the conditioned ranks.
“Purchasing Bernie was a bit of a gamble,” said Millner. “We bought him at the height of the pandemic, but he showed some promising starts at Woodbine Mohawk Park, with some big last quarters.”