Sunday, October 26, 2014

Harness racing staple Harley Yoder trots to Hall of Fame

Harley Yoder celebrates his 55-year harness racing career with a recent induction into the Indiana Standardbred Hall of Fame.

Posted on March 11, 2014 at 4:54 p.m.

One of Elkhart County's harness racing legends is now immortalized among other Indiana greats in the sport.

Harley Yoder, a Goshen resident who has been involved in the harness racing community for more than half a century, was inducted into the Indiana Standardbred Hall of Fame on Feb. 1.

Yoder was recognized by members of the Hall of Fame committee at the 2013 Indiana Standardbred Association Awards Banquet in Indianapolis.

Yoder's 55-year harness racing career has been marked by an Indiana Driver of the Year award in his rookie season (1958) and the first pacing track record on the new Elkhart County 4-H Fair track.

When harness racing returned to the Elkhart County 4-H Fair in 1976, Yoder captured the first race. In 2013, Yoder was named the fair's Citizen of the Year.

In recent years, Yoder has become a mentor for children in the "Born to Trot" 4-H Club in Elkhart County.

"I think if you spoke to a cross section of individuals in this area about Harley Yoder and what he means to Harness Racing in Northern Indiana, I think you would soon find out that he has had quite an influence and impact on the sport," Yoder's son, Dewayne Yoder, wrote in his hall of fame nomination letter.

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