ARCADIA, Calif. (Sept. 25, 2017)–Visual imagery aside, fans nationwide will clearly know Friday at 1 p.m., PT, that Santa Anita is back in operation as they’ll hear the clarion call, “Racing!” signifying that live racing is not only back at The Great Race Place, but so is the “Voice of Santa Anita,” Michael Wrona.
A 51-year-old native of Brisbane, Australia, Wrona, who was named Santa Anita’s full-time announcer in March, 2016, has been quite busy since the conclusion of Santa Anita’s Spring Meet this past July.
“We had a great summer. Kathy and I got married a year ago, July, in Lake Tahoe and we spent a week there, which was fantastic. After that, we headed over to Santa Rosa (Sonoma County Fair) and then I called the four-week meet at Golden Gate, which ended on Sept. 17,” said Wrona. “It was great seeing everyone again up north, but I can’t wait to get back into stride here on Friday. We’ve got some of the best horses in the world on the grounds and I’m really looking forward to calling the (Grade III) Eddie D. coming down the hillside turf on Friday.”
An understudy of the legendary Australian announcer John Tapp, Wrona made his American racing debut at the tender age of 24 in 1990 at Hollywood Park and then took a circuitous route to full-time employment at Santa Anita, as he toiled for periods of time at tracks in Chicago, Texas, Louisiana, the eastern seaboard and the San Francisco Bay Area over a period of 26 years.
“This will be my second Autumn Meet assignment and I really can’t express how grateful I am to be in this position. To be working at the most beautiful track in America and calling races with the best jockeys and the best horses, is beyond a dream come true. Here’s hoping everyone stays healthy and we have a great meet. I’ve been out at Clockers’ Corner over the past week and you can feel the anticipation. It’s exciting.”
First post time for a nine-race card on Friday, Sept. 29 is at 1 p.m. Santa Anita will present a blockbuster 11-race program on Saturday, highlighted by five Grade I, Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” Challenge Races. First post time on all weekends is at 12:30 p.m.
For more information on Santa Anita’s 19-day Autumn Meet, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.