COLUMBUS, MN. - Threestepstoheaven, the longest shot on the board at 16-1, captured the $8,500 Open Pace at Running Aces on Sunday night.
The eight-year-oldgelding, trained and driven by the meet's second leading reinsman , bested Canadian Touch ( ) and Restless Yankee ( ) in 1:52.2.
The longshot winner was last in the field of six until the top of the stretch when he swung four-wide and exploded past the others with a :28.3 final panel. Threestepstoheaven paid $34.40 to win.
Quickest mile of the evening, however, belonged to Del Rio Seelster who won a $7,500 race mixing non-winners of $5,000 last five starts with $12,500 claimers in 1:52.1. With leading driverguiding his son Daniel's six-year-old son of , the pair downed R Gauwitz Hanover (Kim Pluta) and Mystical Valentine (Ryan) with a brush from fourth to first in the third panel and a closing :27.3 panel to seal the deal.
Maier visited the winner's circle four times on Sunday while Ryan managed three triumphs andscored a double.
A pair of $6,500 Minnesota-sired races for trotters were also featured. Chewy Dunkerton (Roland) won the colts and geldings split with a 2:01.2 clocking to beat TURB (Ryan) and Al Mar Passion (). The fillies division was captured by Al Mar Pizzazz (Maier) over Majestic Lady Jo ( ) and Montana Eclipse ( ) in 1:59.3. Benjamin DeLong owns Chewy Dunkerton and the partnership of Ulf Holm-Johansen and Vernon Devine own Al-Mar Pizzazz.
From the Running Aces Publicity Department