Day At The Track

Dover Downs resume 2017/2018

12:02 AM 06 Apr 2018 NZST
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Dover Downs harness racing
Dover Downs

Dover Downs' 49th harness racing season ended On Thursday, March 29 when Déjà vu Blue, Super Fly, Go Sandy Go and Slick Tony won $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) finals and Major Uptrend won the $35,000 Preferred pace on the closing card of it's 2017-2018 meet.

With Delaware Gov. John Carney and members of his staff on hand, and a usual large crowd of fans turned out to watch the four state-bred three-year-old trotting and pacing finals, two 1:49.4 feature races and meet horsemen top- honors presented.

Tim Tetrick was Leading Driver during the 81-programs season. Tetrick fininshed with 11 wins more than Corey Callahan, who had won the previous seven titles in a row. Dylan Davis was Leading Trainer at the meet for the fifth consecutive season. Free For Aller Sicily, who won five top features with sub-1:50 victories including 1:48.4, the fastest time of the Meet, won a tight ballot by Delaware Valley chapter U.S. Harness Writers Assocation members, voted Horse of the Meet.

On the track, DSBF Chamionships: Déjà vu Blue, driven by Tim Tetrick, bested arch-rival Star Sapphire (Russell Foster) by a head to win the sophomore filly trotter event. Vandalous (Callahan) was third.---Super Fly overpowered seven rivals in 1:55.2 to win the $100,000 male trot with Art Stafford Jr. in the bike. Bother Kenny (Tetrick) was runner-up with Seafood Suzie Blue (Jason Green) third.--- Go Sandy Go, with Jason Green driving, lowered her lifetime fastest mark to 1:53.2 romping to victory in the DSBF $100,000 filly pace.---Gracefullyforgiven, with Art Stafford Jr., was second in front of Studio Session (Sean Bier) third.---Slick Tony, owned by breeder George Leager and piloted by Russell Foster, took home the soph colt and gelding pace $100,000 championship with a 1:53.4 performance. Transitioning Joy (Teague), and Evolutiion Tour (Tetrick) were second and third.---- The Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) 3-year-old trotting and pacing stakes program completed two preliminary weeks of $20,000 sophomore legs of trotting and filly events----The top eight-point getters in each of the four sophomore divisions returned for $100,000 championship finals

Closing night: Major Uptrend (Tony Morgan), paced his fourth sub-1:50 mile of the meet scoring a 1:49.2 triumph in the $35,000 Preferred/Handicap, the top race on the regular card. Sicily (Montrell Teague) was next with Super Imposed N (Callahan) third.---One race earlier, Art Stafford Jr. guided Blazing Bobby Sox home in 1:49.2 to win a $16,000 Winners-Over pace. Forty Five Red (Mike Cole) and Cajon Lightning (Stafford Jr.) were second and third respectively.---Art Of Fire made it five wins in a row in an $18,000 Conditioned pace. Jonathan Roberts drove the winner for trainer Kevin Lare, and breeder-owner Forest Bartlett ash Is King (Callahan) was next. Wichita Lineman (Allan Davis) was third.--- Jet Airway (Callahan) also kept a streak going, notching his fourth straight, a 1:51.1 winner in a $25,000-$30,000 Claiming Handicap.The other high-price claiming pace was won by Im Supersonic A (Sean Bier), who fashioned a 1:50.2 triumph in another top claimng pace.---Art Stafford Jr. had a triple, Tim Tetrick, Sean Bier and Tony Morgan had driving doubles.

Sicily won the close vote of the Delaware Valley chapter, U.S. Harness Writers Association Horse of the Meet for Horse of the Meet honors. Major Uptrend, trotter Theresademoninme, Major Uptrend and Cyclone Kiwi N were next in the balloting. Red -hot Tim Tetrick, a former track champion, overtook seven-time defending champion Corey Callahan,for the Leading Driver title and for the fifth consecutive season Dylon Davis is Leading Trainer.

DURING THE FINAL WEEK: Tim Tetrick drove five winners while Very Dark won the feature trot and Ballinrobe, the top Pace on Monday (March 26) --- Ross Wolfenden was in the bike to steer Very Dark to his second win-in-a-row to win the $12,000 Winners trot in 1:57.--- The outside post was no concern to Vic Kirby who left fast and chalked up his fourth win of 2017 for new owner Don Fowler who claimed the gelding last week. The 1:51.4 victory came in a $15,000-$17,500 Claiming pace.----Tim Tetrick started his 5-win day taking both ends of the daily double. Driver Tony Morgan, trainers Josh Green and Brian Malone had two wins each.

On Tuesday (3/26) Tim Tetrick won five races for the second straight day while on Theresademoninme won the $30,000 Open/Handicap trot for the third straight week---. Theresademoninme rolled out of post 7 to snatch the early lead and was never headed in a 1:53.2 victory, his third straight and fifth in the last seven feature trots at the track with Jonathan Roberts driving. Rock Of Cashel (Corey Callahan) closed with a rush to finish second while Gural Hanover (Tony Morgan) in his second race of the year, finished third in the feature.

After winning the daily double again and the first three races, Tetrick steered breeder Delbert Cain and Nanticoke Racing's Howard Taylor and Rich Lombardo's Holiday Promise notched a 1:55 score in a $15,000 Winners trot, his second straight win.---In addition to Tim Tetrick's five bagger, Tony Morgan and Corey Callahan had doubles.

Terror At Night caught front-pacing Nerida Franco N in the final stride to win the last $30,000 Mares Open/Handicap feature of the meet on Wednesday, March 28. Driver Mike Cole pulled Terror At Night out of third and followed Apple Bottom Jeans on the outside before moving three wide turning for home. The 5-year-old hustled down the lane just in time to catch Nerida Franco N (Allan Davis) in the 1:50.4 event. Divas Image (Tetrick) closed strongly to finish third.---Stormtracker (Tetrick) made good use of post 1 scoring a front-end 1:52 triumph in a $22,000 conditioned pace. Shesarocker (Vic Kirby) was the place finisher with Legio X Equestris (Montrell Teague) third. --- Use Your Noodle, trained by Les Givens, was at the top of her game notching a 1:51.1 wire-to-wire conquest in a $16,000 Mares Winners-Over pace.---Tetrick guided Snappy Dresser, conditioned by Josh Green, to victory in a $15,000 female pace, giving her a third win in her last four efforts.---Two drivers had triples, Tony Morgan and Tim Tetrick, who had five wins the first two nights of the week added a three-bagger, Art Stafford Jr. had a double as did trainer Les Givens and Nanticoke Racing Inc. and Jeff Fout, a former standout driver in Ohio, won both ends of the daily double for owners Bay Pond Stable.

Tim Tetrick, with a strong March finish upended seven-time defending champion Corey Callahan in dash-winning drives. Tetrick won 143 wins. Callahan had three wins, and totals 136 wins Tony Morgan is third with 116 wins. Vic Kirby is fourth with 82 and Art Stafford Jr., is fifth, with 76 wins.

Davis Dylan 21.0 224 47 36 34 .350 635,402

Green Josh 26.3 156 41 27 27 .417 488,480

Columbo Joseph 12.1 273 33 39 38 .247 386,308

Givens Wayne 17.7 186 33 37 23 .329 464,149

King Jr Jim 18.5 173 32 27 19 .308 481,871

Malone Brian 23.1 134 31 20 20 .364 247,959

Hall Michael 17.2 169 29 28 15 .293 375,275

Callahan Nicholas 15.6 179 28 27 25 .287 355,715

Ell Eric 23.3 120 28 12 22 .350 348,875

Lare Kevin 16.6 163 27 22 16 .273 324,459

Crissman Tim 21.4 117 25 17 17 .343 255,988

Hundertpfund Jr Joseph 12.1 198 24 24 26 .232 226,544

Crissman-Bier Crissy 13.9 158 22 22 20 .259 290,050

Francis Clyde 15.2 145 22 22 22 .287 308,585

Givens Les 16.3 129 21 22 20 .309 278,339

Ewing Gary 21.8 78 17 15 10 .368 186,200

Reeser Robert 18.4 87 16 12 12 .307 144,695

Moore Kyle 12.1 124 15 9 17 .207 106,497

Truitt Bryan 22.1 68 15 9 12 .353 168,854

Bamond Jr. Jeffrey 20.0 70 14 11 5 .311 158,290

Foster Jr Arty 9.4 149 14 24 23 .235 213,161

Gray Brooks 17.5 80 14 9 13 .292 151,948

Johnson Jason 11.0 127 14 19 15 .233 168,915

Reynolds Willard 18.9 74 14 8 8 .285 106,288

Toscano Linda 22.0 59 13 11 7 .363 148,830

Cabot John 15.6 77 12 6 10 .242 104,165

Dennis Eddie 14.3 77 11 7 5 .215 84,874

Foster Eric 9.4 117 11 16 13 .207 157,107

Defending champion Dylan Davis top the trainer standing with 47 wins, Josh Green is second with 41 wins, Wayne Givens ND Joe Columbo of the Gerge =&Tina Dennis Stable, were tied for third with 33 winners. Jim King is fourth with 32 wins. Nick Callahan and Brian Malone finished fifth with 31 winners.

1-Dylan Davis 21.0% 224 47 36 34 .350 635,402

2-Josh Green 26.3% 156 41 27 27 .417 488,480

3-Joe Columbo 12.1% 273 33 39 38 .247 386,308

4-Wayne Givens17.7% 186 33 37 23 .329 464,149

5-Jim King Jr 18.5% 173 32 27 19 .308 481,871

6- Brian Malone 23.1% 134 31 20 20 .364 247,959

7- Mike Hall 17.2% 169 29 28 15 .293 375,275

8- Nick Callahan15.6% 179 28 27 25 .287 355,715

9- Eric Ell 23.3% 120 28 12 22 .350 348,875

10-Kevin Lare 16.6% 163 27 22 16 .273 324,459

11-Tim Crissman21.4% 117 25 17 17 .343 255,988

12-JoeHundertpfund12.1% 198 24 24 26 .232 226,544

13-Crissy Crissman-Bier13.9%158 22 22 20 .259 290,050

14-ClydeFrancis 15.2% 145 22 22 22 .287 308,585

15-Les Givens 16.3% 129 21 22 20 .309 278,339

16-Gary Ewing 21.8% 78 17 15 10 .368 186,200

17-Bob Reeser 18.4% 87 16 12 12 .307 144,695

18-Kyle Moore 12.1% 124 15 9 17 .207 106,497

19-Truitt Bryan 22.1% 68 15 9 12 .353 168,854

20-Jeff Bamond Jr. 20.0% 70 14 11 5 .311 158,290

Sicily won the close vote of the Delaware Valley chapter, U.S. Harness Writers Association for Horse of the Meet honors. Major Uptrend, trotter Theresademoninme, Major Uptrend and claimer Cyclone Kiwi N were next in the balloting. Red hot Tim Tetrick, a former track champion, overtook seven-time defending champion Corey Callahan, for the Leading Driver title and for the fifth consecutive season Dylon Davis is Leading Trainer.

Downbytheseaside won the $308,060 Hap Hansen Progress Pace (HHPP), the biggest events of the Delaware harness racing season. Downbytheseside went out a winner rushing to a 1:48.3 victory in his final race prior to stallion duty. Chris Page directed the convincing victory, his 14th of the season with a separately-owned Brian Brown trained stablemate Fear The Dragon, second.

Russell Foster had the finest day of his career winning two of the four $100,000 DSBF Two-Year-Old Dover Downs Finals on the Super Thursday (Nov. 30) 2017 card. Foster drove Star Sapphire, who won the $100,000 Harrington Final, to a 1:59 triumph in the 2-Year-Old Filly trot and Slick Tony, by a nose in in 1:51.4, in the Colt Final. Go Sandy Go won the Filly pace in 1:53.4 and Sky Marshal in 1:56.4, both wins by a nose.

The 2017 Matron Stakes, harness racing's longest continual stakes dating back to the 19th century, Dover Downs has been home-base since the 1997 season. The Thursday'(11/16) card provided fans with an outstanding showcase of racing: Downbytheseaside became a $2-million winner; Bill's Man closed strongly for Tim Tetrick's first of four wins, Agent Q got up for Hall of Famer David Miller and Dream Together -led off the four Matron Stakes championships.Tetrick added to his meet leading driver total scoring four winners

Bill's Mann, with catch-driver Tetrick, was surprise winner of the $201,900 Matron 3-Year-Old Trot. M&L of Delaware, nom de course of Ralph, Roz and Doug Paul of Greenville, longtime horse owners, formerly noted for owning stakes pacers. Also, Agent Q, the dam of winner of the $182.700 Matron Filly pace was bred by local horsemen Ken Wood, Bill Dittmar and Steve Iaquinta. Finding they had too many broodmares, they sold the dam of the Matron winner, Teenage Paige. ...It was a mistake.

The Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) Dover Downs Two-Year-Olds Finals featured the finest group of Delaware-sired freshmen in its history. Star Sapphire (Russell Foster-1:59) was the only easy 4-length winner of the filly $100,000 final. The other three divisions were decided by the photo finish camera. Sky Marshal (Carlo Poliseno-156.4) was the surprise winner of the trot final, Slick Tony (Foster-1:51.1) and Go Sandy Go (Jason Green-1:53.4) took the colt and filly $100,000 finals.

Bags To Riches who dominated the 2017 DSBF Three-Year-Old Colt Pace division recorded his first sub 1:50 victory winning the $25,000 Open in 1:49.4.Also Major Upstart, who seems to love Dover Downs, scored a 1:49.3 win.

Art Stafford Jr. became part of Delaware harness racing history driving back-to-back dead-heat winner on Pearl Harbor Remembrance day (12/ 7). In the feature race, former Down Under champion Christen Me N scored his fastest career victory, 1:49.2, winning the $30,000 Preferred pace. --- Corey Callahan drove four winners, Stafford won three straight while Montrell Teague and Allan Davis had driving doubles.

On the last Tuesday of the 2017 potion of the meet, trotting specialist Jack Parker Jr. had a big day. He piloted seven-year-old NF Happenstance, from post 8 to win her first since having a foal and a return to the races after her four-year-old season. Then,Parkerwas only a nose away from a second victory driving Royal Becca J in the Open trot.

Tony Morgan accomplished his 16,000-win milestone on Jan. 3, 2018 by quickly winning both ends of the daily double. Morgan is second in the sport in winning drives trailing only Dave Palone, who passed the 18,000-win mark early in 2017. Germany's Hans Wevering is third on the list with the late Herve Filion, fourth.

The weather played a big role in racing during the meet. Just before the 2nd race on Thursday (Nov. 30), an earthquake, said to be 4.4-magnitude, shook the racetrack and Dover, Del. vicinity. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) confirms that at 4:48 p.m. EST, a 4.4-magnitude earthquake occurred. The coordinates of the quake (39.2N 75.4W) put the center of the quake 10 miles northeast of Dover, ----Dover Downs harness rarely cancels, but on Thursday (1/4), the powerful "Nor'easter" which roared through Atlantic states delivered several inches of snow, strong winds and low temperatures necessitated cancelation of racing. Later in the season, besieged by three straight weeks of Nor'easters, the track canceled a second time, on March 21.

During the first week of the New Year: A four-horse photo-finish lead-off the Monday, 2018 New Year's day, resulted in a dead-heat for win. Race-favorite Splashed and 22-1 shot Great Kate got their picture taken in the 1:55.1 feature with temperatures in the low teens, Sheer Assault and Pure Kemp were noses away finishing third and fourth respectively before the Judges ruled Sheer Assault interfered with Pure Kemp in the lane and their finishes were reversed.

Red-hot Tony Morgan racked up five winners including 7-1 shot One To Draw To in one of a trio of feature races on Thursday, Jan 18.The previous week, Cyclone Kiwi N was claimed for $35,000. Jeff Bamond Jr. them claimed him back for the same price in the first of two $25,000--$35,000 Claiming Handicaps. Corey Callahan drove the gelding from post 8 in a pulverizing :25.3 quarter and never looked back en route to a 1:51.3 score, his fourth straight and sixth win in his last seven with a second-place. The pacer, claimed twice, then won six-in-a-row.

Starting from outside post 8 proved no problem for Divas Image on the way to her fourth straight $25,000 Mares Open/Handicap win on Wednesday, Jan 24.

Tony Morgan moved Divas Image up to take the front and never was headed the rest of a 1:52.1 mile. A 14-times winner of six of her previous eight races

Back in mid-December, Bobby Glassmeyer picked Something Said, who had a two-race win streak, out of a $12,500 claimer. The gelding then stepped up to win a pair of $25,000 claimers, and two $13,000 Winner-Over paces including Feb. 1 when Jonathan Roberts piloted a sixth win in-a-row, a 1:49.3 lifetime mark

The last week in January was an exceptional time for driver Jack Parker Jr.'s two top trotters stable. Parker guided NF Happenstance to victory over an off-track at Yonkers in a $50,000 trot on Sunday and Wednesday Royal Becca J chalked up a third victory in her last five feature-race outings . Both Royal Becca J and NF Happenstance are owned by a born and educated former Delawarean, James "Chip" Moore III,

Tim Crissman reached the 1,500 mark in training wins during his career when three of his trainees won on Feb. 15, Number 1,500 came when Major Uptrend scored a 1:49 win in the $27,500 feature. Arriving from the Mid-West at the turn into the 21st century, Crissman's modest stable usually ranked high in the trainer standings

Ken Wood, annually one of the track's leading horsemen, returned from his multiple round trips to West Africa building wells for needed Ghana and Tanzania residents who until Wood's humanitarian efforts never enjoyed fresh drinking water. Wood drillings have reached 2,000 wells. In addition Wood also is involved in giving specially created reading glasses to the natives.

Only the March 1, 14-race program, for the first time in the meet, found no driver or trainer with more than one win on the card.

Marv Bachrad

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