Miller presented with six awards during the QHRAI banquet

Sheri Miller had an exceptional year in Indiana Quarter Horse racing. The Shipshewana, Ind. native pulled in six awards presented during the annual Quarter Horse Racing Association of Indiana (QHRAI) banquet held Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016 in Indianapolis.

Miller, who has been a longtime participant in Indiana Quarter Horse racing, was named 2016 Breeder of the Year. Horses that were raised on her farm had 12 wins in 63 starts with purse earnings in excess of $262,000 for the year. Miller and her husband, Glen, also stand a couple of stallions, including the standout producer Escondido Beach, who earned 2015 QHRAI Sire of the Year for the second straight season.

In addition to those awards, Miller was either owner or breeder on four champions in 2015, including Megatron Harry, Two Year Old Colt/Gelding of the Year and QHRAI Champion Two Year Old (owner) and Beach Cartel, Three Year old Colt/Gelding of the Year and QHRAI Champion Three Year Old (owner and breeder). Both horses dominated in their categories last year and are both sons of Miller’s stallion, Escondido Beach. Miller was joined by her husband, Glen, and their daughter, Katie for the awards presentation.

Megatron Harry completed his first year of racing with four wins and two seconds in seven starts. His biggest win was recorded in the $199,200 Gordon Mobley Futurity, the richest Quarter Horse race in the state of Indiana.

Unraced as a two year old, Beach Cartel rallied onto the scene in 2015 with authority, winning six of his nine starts. The grey gelding had a pair of stakes wins in the $122,700 Blue River Derby as well as the $120,200 Sterlie Bertram Memorial. In all, he closed out the racing season with earnings in excess of $167,000.

Miller’s trainer, Randy Smith, was also honored with nine awards during the evening. Smith, who has back to back Leading Trainer awards from Indiana Grand in 2014 and 2015, was presented with 2015 Trainer of the Year, earning a belt buckle for his accomplishments. Horses from Smith’s barn started 249 times, producing 46 wins and purse earnings in excess of $1.1 million. Smith is the first Quarter Horse trainer in the history of Quarter Horse racing in the state of Indiana to surpass the one million mark in one season. In addition, he posted the most wins ever recorded in one year by a trainer (46) and most purse earnings ever accumulated in one season ($1,108,775).

Smith was also presented with 2015 Owner of the Year honors at the QHRAI banquet. Horses that he owned won 10 races during the season in 63 starts with earnings of more than $262,039, more than any other owner in the state of Indiana. In addition to his awards for Trainer and Owner of the Year, Smith conditioned eight horses to high point awards and champion status for the 2015 season, including Megatron Harry and Beach Cartel.

Prior to the awards portion of the program, Otto Thorwarth, retired jockey and star of the Disney movie “Secretariat,” provided the keynote speech, giving insight on being a jockey and actor. More than 250 were in attendance for the annual awards ceremony.

In addition to her success in 2015 at the QHRAI Awards Banquet, Miller received the 2015 Leading Owner award at the conclusion of the meet at Indiana Grand in late October. She had 12 wins in 30 starts during the seven month meet with purse earnings in excess of $371,811, the most of any other Quarter Horse owner for 2015 at the track.