Brian Sears was named the United States Harness Writers Association’s Rising Star of the Year in 1991 and has never looked back. The 48-year-old native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, who now resides in Secaucus, New Jersey, was a top competitor at the driving colonies of Vernon Downs, Pompano, Pocono and The Meadows before moving east to the metro New York City area a dozen years ago.
Sears is a third-generation horseman. His father, Jay, won more than 1,400 races and purses of more than $3.3 million. His grandfather, Gene Sears, was also a 1,000-plus race winner who banked $1.7 million during his career.
Brian Sears - the “White Knight” - won his first pari-mutuel race while he was in high school, driving a horse named Alicia Blue Chip. He spent two years as a pre-veterinary student at Auburn University before committing to a full-time racing career in 1990.
Sears has driven many of the sport’s greatest horses from the last 15 years to victories in championship races. Among the horses closely associated with Sears are three winners of the Horse of the Year title: Rocknroll Hanover in 2005, Muscle Hill in 2009 and Bee A Magician in 2013. Sears has dominated some of the toughest circuits in harness racing, winning multiple driving championships at the Meadowlands and also topping the charts at Yonkers Raceway.
Sears currently stands 6th on the list of all-time moneywinning drivers with $177,638,712 in purse money. At the time of his Hall of Fame induction he had 9,759 career wins out of 50,910 starts, good for 14th place among all drivers in North American history.
Sears has driving wins in most of the sport’s premier events, including the Adios (twice), Battle of the Brandywine (4 times), Breeders Crown (27 times), Canadian Pacing Derby (3 times), Canadian Trotting Classic (twice), Cane Pace (twice), Stanley Dancer Memorial (4 times), Delvin Miller Memorial, Fan Hanover (twice), Hambletonian (3 times), Hambletonian Oaks (twice), Peter Haughton Memorial (4 times), Kentucky Futurity (twice), Little Brown Jug, Maple Leaf Trot (twice), Meadowlands Pace (twice), Messenger, Metro Pace (twice), North America Cup (twice), Three Diamonds (3 times) and the Yonkers Trot (twice).
Sears is the only driver to twice win the Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks on the same day, accomplishing the feat with Muscle Hill and Broadway Schooner in 2009 and again with Royalty For Life and Bee A Magician in 2013. He won the 2015 Hambletonian with Pinkman in his only drive behind the horse that season. The sport’s Driver of the Year in 2009, Sears’ 27 Breeders Crown titles place him 4th on the all-time wins list in the series. Horses driven by Sears have earned more than $11 million in the series, which is among the top five in history.