For more than four decades, the driving colony at Freehold Raceway has included “Diamond Jim” Marshall III. That era came to an end on Dec. 19, but not before Marshall notched one more harness racing victory.
In his penultimate drive, race 10, Marshall won his 3,820th race, according to a press release.
Marshall put Rancousy on the lead early on and never gave it up, holding for a half-length win. The winner is owned by Barbara Bongiorno and John Papadakis, and trained by Robert Bongiorno.
Following the race, Marshall was honored with a ceremony on the track, where he was presented with a ceremonial mug. Jim’s wife, Donna, a trainer, and his son, Jim IV, a driver, were present.
Marshall’s final drive came in the 11th race on Nobles Finesse for trainer Paul Fusco. He encountered traffic trouble and ended up fifth.
Marshall won his first race in 1977, guiding Governor Duke to victory at Freehold. His more than 33,000 drives have earned more than $25 million, according to the press release.
When not driving at Freehold, Marshall serves as the assistant starter at the Meadowlands. In February, he will begin serving as a judge at Pocono Downs in Pennsylvania.
Live harness racing at Freehold Raceway will resume on Dec. 31 with a first race post time of 12:30 p.m.