05/08/2017 3:45PM

Harness: Jack Cohen, Sports Eye founder, dies at 85

Jack Cohen sold Sports Eye to Daily Racing Form in 2005.

Jack Cohen, who founded the racing newspaper Sports Eye, now DRF Harness Eye, died on Friday (May 5) due to unknown causes.

Cohen started Sports Eye in 1964 and the paper hit a circulation zenith of 40,000 copies per day at one point. Known as the bible for harness players, Sports Eye revolutionized the game as the only place to get detailed information about previous races. In the days before simulcasting and ADWs, when the only way to see what happened was to be at the track, Sports Eye had you covered.

“At one time we had 25-30 people at the track covering harness racing,” Cohen relayed in a 2014 interview. “We were the only place that was printing the (racing) comments.”

Sports Eye, the newspaper and the company, was the stepping stone for many of the top names in the racing world today as well as sports in general. WFAN’s Mike Francesa is a former alumnus, along with Brad Thomas, Bob Marks, “Hollywood” Heyden, Geoff Stein, Clyde Hirt and many more.

“He was an innovator,” said former Sports Eye Editor-in-Chief Jay Bergman.

Jack is survived by his children, Michael and April. We at DRF Harness mourn his death and our thoughts are with his family and friends.