The excitement is in the air, as horsemen from all over the world prepare their travel plans to converge at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg for the annual Standardbred Horse Sale from November 7th through the 11th.
The sale kicks off with yearlings, and also features broodmares and racehorses during the extremely busy week, with horsemen clamoring to purchase their next big star, or add to their growing stable of broodmares.
Dale Welk, President and Director of Operations for Standardbred Horse Sales at Hanover Shoe Farms is already feeling the anticipation from the industry. “There’s a lot of buzz and we’re already getting people calling about it. Consigners have people coming already to look at the horses, and a lot of the same ones had horses at the Lexington sale.”
The Standardbred Horse Sales Company was founded in 1939, with the initial function to provide a sale venue for yearlings at Hanover Shoe Farms, which at the time had been selling yearlings at the Old Glory Sale, which shut down in 1938.*
Today, 83 years later, Standardbred Horse Sales continues its leadership in the Standardbred horse sales industry, and is looking forward to a tremendously successful Harrisburg sale.
Dale and his team are happy to be back at the Farm Show Complex again for the sale, which missed a year during the pandemic. “Being back there at Harrisburg last year, almost everybody felt like it was like we were back home. This year is our 84th sale, and we’ve only missed two years at Harrisburg. One of them was back during the war in 1942, and the other in 2020.”
As for the yearlings that will be in high demand this year, Dale mentioned one that will definitely be at the top of everyone’s list. “I think the Greenshoes (Father Patrick-Designed To Be by Donato Hanover) will be in BIG demand, and we have some really well-bred Greenshoes in the sale. We have a lot of horses from all the top stallions. Our Monday is LOADED, and so is Tuesday, and Wednesday has some good horses too! We actually have horses on Tuesday that we could have had on Monday, but we only take so many on Monday. I hate to promote too many single horses, because I don’t want to miss somebody, but all the consigners have great horses. It made it tough, to be honest, to separate them by days.”
“167 of the top yearlings will be on Monday,” Dale said. “They’re graded mainly by pedigree and conformation, but on Monday we have some really strong pedigrees.”
Dale is optimistic that there is a very good chance a record crowd will turn out for this sale. “I think we will be okay, because the borders are more open, and of course, the foreign travelers can get in a lot easier than they could. Last year, with the Canadian border opening on Sunday at midnight, it helped a lot on Monday. I think we’re going to have a stellar crowd and I think we’re going to have a great sale. I won’t say it will surpass last year, but I think it’s got a good chance! As long as everything stays together in our economy.”
It’s down to the wire for everyone at Standardbred Horse Sales, and they are ecstatic to show off the superb horses at the upcoming sale. With the yearlings in the forefront, Dale said they are also focusing on a strong Mixed Sale. “We are hopeful to pull a good Mixed Sale together. I realize numbers are going to be down with the Mixed Sale because of online sales, number one; and number two, shortage of racehorses. Most people are hanging on to them, but I think we will have a good group of breeding stock. We’ve already got yearlings in the Mixed Sale. I’m really looking forward to it.”
Dale also dangled this tidbit of information to horsemen anxious to purchase their next stable standout. “We do have a full brother to the yearling sale-topper of last year!”
For the catalog and schedule, go to
*Facebook – Standardbred Horse Sales Company
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.