With his trademark call “And Here They Are!”, track announcer Jim Moran has been the distinctive voice of Vernon Downs since the early 1960’s. He is among the best when it comes to calling the trotters and pacers from the starting gate to the finish line at the Miracle Mile.
Moran attended Springfield College and became the sports editor for the Oneida Dispatch in 1961. He went to Vernon Downs a year later and worked as a racecourse clerk, a position now known as Recording Judge. Until 1965 Moran managed the Racing, Program and Public Relations Departments. In 1975, he was named Director of Publicity and Public Relations. He continued to work his way up the corporate ladder as a Board Member, a vice-president of Midstate Raceways and Corporate Secretary of the track. Meanwhile, it was Moran at the mike from the grandstand every racing night.
In 1990, the Harness Horse Association of Central New York honored Moran with the Golden Pen Award. He is also former Chairman of the Board and President of the North American Harness Racing Publicists Association and is currently Alternate President of the Harness Tracks of America.
Since 1984, Jim has also been the voice of Hamilton College, the school’s radio play-by-play announcer for basketball. He also did Hamilton College football from 1990 to 1994.
1962: Started working at Vernon Downs
1964: Became full-time announcer at Vernon Downs; Moran took over the job from his uncle, Bud Hebert
1975: Became Director of Publicity and Public Relations at the track
1990: Received the Harness Horse Association of Central New York Golden Pen Award
2010: Inducted into the Communicators Corner of the Harness Racing Meseum and Hall of Fame