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September 9, 2022 - 6:31pm

Richard R. Mays, horseman with ties to Batavia Downs, dies at 65

posted by Tim Bojarski in harness racing, Batavia Downs, Sports.

Richard R. Mays, of Hamburg, passed away on Sept. 7, 2022, after a fierce battle with cancer.

Mr. Mays was a lifelong horseman who competed in western New York for 50 years. He was first licensed in 1973 at the age of 16 and has been competing at tracks across New York state ever since. He experienced great early career driving success with the Open pacing mare May O’neighs (2:01.1, $83,925) and Open pacing gelding Lyron Hanover (1:59.3, $127,242) along with a list of other top horses that he raced at Batavia Downs. Later in his career when he switched to training more than driving, Mr. Mays developed many solid racehorses including the multiple stakes winner Two Twentytwo (1:51.3, $293,729).  

During his career, Mr. Mays drove 1,638 winners that earned $4,222,626. He trained another 321 winners which added $1,585,531 to his purse total. His total career efforts won him 1,959 races that benefited his horse’s connections $5,808,157. Mr. Mays was actively racing right up until the time of his passing.

Mr. Mays was the beloved husband of Karen M. Mays (nee Babcock), loving father of Christopher (Frances) Mays, Jamie Simmons, and Scott Mays, dear grandpa of Tyler, Mayson, Maddie, and Hudson, dearest son of the late Frank and Marion Mays, loving brother of Frank Jr., Robert, Terry, Tom, and Joyce. Mr. Mays is also survived by a large loving family and many dear friends.

The family will be present to receive relatives and friends on Thursday, Sept. 15 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Hamburg Chapel of the John J. Kaczor Funeral Home, 5453 Southwestern Blvd. (corner of Rogers Rd.) where a closing prayer will be said at 7 p.m. Please share condolences at www.kaczorfunerals.com.

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