Dover Downs comes to a close Thursday

10:25 PM 06 Apr 2012 NZST
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Dover Downs

Dover Downs 43rd season is idle this weekend; Friday, Saturday and on Easter Sunday, April 8. The 2011-2012 harness racing meet comes to a close next Thursday, April 12. A $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) final will be featured each of the remaining four race days.

On closing day, Thursday, April 12, the Horse of the Meet, Leading Driver and Leading Trainer honors will be presented.

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Next week is it, for Delaware-Sired three-year-olds. After two-weeks of preliminaries, the top eight point-getters in each of four divisions return during the final week of the meet, for $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) finals.

Winning horses during the two legs were, colt pacers- Fight Instructor (2), Bail Money. Pop A Top Pop and Its Outta Here; Filly pacers –Mac’s Journey (2), Powerful Honey, Joyanna, Two Cam and Heres My Ticket; trotting colts –Windshield and I’m So Striking swept each of two prelims as did filly trotter, Alleigh Girl.

Cruisin Susan and Da Boss Lady won one leg each. The finals schedule is: colt pacer race on Monday, filly pacers, Tuesday, colt trotters race, Wednesday and filly trotters on meet closing day.

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Over the last 15 seasons, a number of world and track records have been set and re-set at the track. The latest is for a dead-heat for trotters, broken and tied on March 28 when Keystone Thomas and Sea Raven could not be separated by the photo finish camera in 1:55.2. Earlier in the meet, Justherighttouch and Idol Kemp also arrived together in 1:55.2 which set the stage for sharing the record.

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U.S.T.A. Statistics through 2011 reveal that Dover Downs has had more all-time 1:55 miles that any other five-eighths mile track with 10,465. In 2011, the track had 1,032 mile better than 1:55.

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The number of 2012 season champions over a five-eighths mile track, continues to grow at Dover Downs. Among two-year-old pacers, Flight Instructor is fastest colt, 1:52.4; filly, Heres My Ticket won in 1:52.3. In the four-year-old pacing ranks, stallion, Samardar (1:50.4) and mare, Mach Lady (1:51.2) are leaders while Higher And Higher (1:49.1) is fastest older mare, Fancyfreeshark (1:49.2), older stallion, and Broadies Song (1:50) older gelding. Older trotter Tagyoureit Hanover, a 1:53 winner, is fastest gelding.

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Another close call: Poker Shark, Marced Card and Hancock are among the leading candidate for Claimer of the Meet. The winner of the award will be announced at the next DSOA Awards Dinner, early next January.

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Corey Callahan clinched his third-straight track Leading Driver title early in the season. Callahan, who won six races on one card twice this season, has already won 257 races this meet. Ross Wolfenden will finish in second place, has 174 victories. Matt Kakaley is third with 106. Brad Hanners is fourth with 100 wins. Tony Morgan is now fifth with 93 win

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Tim Tetrick has the highest UDRS average, .367, similar to a baseball “batting average’. Next comes Ron Pierce (.368), Bret Brittingham (.360), third, Corey Callahan is fourth (.333) and Ross Wolfenden, fifth, with a .280 average.

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Josh Green has wrapped up his seventh straight Leading Trainer championship. Green has haltered 94 winners. Dylan Davis is runner-up with 74. Joe Hundertpfund is in third place with 59 wins. Wayne Givens with 55 wins is fourth. Nick Callahan completes the top five with 41 winners.

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Daryl Bier tops all trainers with a .466 “batting average.” Josh Green is second with a .437 percentage. Jason Skinner has moved into third place (.408), Eric Ell hold fourth place (.407) and Dylan Davis is fifth (.376).

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The sport’s winningest drivers from March 29 through April 4 were Ron Pierce and Tim Tetrick, who each won 25 races. Corey Callahan was third, driving 20 winners.

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In the North American 2012 money-winning standings, Ron Burke, who has won the year-end title four straight years, is the far-away leader, but Josh Green is ranked fifth among 2012 trainers and Dylan Davis holds ninth place.

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Two horses in the Daryl Bier Stable are among the top five money winners in the sport. Special T Rocks has won nearly $125,000 and Higher And Higher, $114,000.

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During the last week of the meet, a sumptuous buffet is the menu for those desiring to enjoy the races and dine at the Winner’s circle restaurant. Dinner is $15.50. Sundays through Wednesdays, Dinner is $16.50 Thursdays when Hot Crab Legs are featured on the menu.

Marv BACHRAD

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