Dontfusswithruss and driver Trace Tetrick rolled home as winners in the fourth and final leg of the $30,000 Indiana Gold Sire Stakes Tuesday, July 3. The three-year-old reigning freshman trotting champ turned in a powerful performance to score his second consecutive win and third Indiana Sire Stakes win.
Selected as the heavy favorite, Dontfusswithruss began his journey from the inside post and moved out quickly, landing in line fifth along the rail behind early leader A Royal Peck and Ricky Macomber Jr. However, their lead was short lived as Mark O’Mara and Jolenes Pinehonker had their sights set on the front. After a costly break by Jolenes Pinehonker, Velten San Siro and Ross Leonard inherited the lead just past the half mile marker in :58.0. Tetrick had Dontfusswithruss out and moving toward the leaders as the field headed into the final turn and the duo reached the front just past the three-quarters in 1:27.4. Dontfusswithruss stopped the clock in 1:56.4 and was able to hold off a hard charging My Muscleman and Jason Dillander who rallied hard in the final strides after being off the pace for much of the race. A Royal Peck got up for the third place finish. Dontfusswithruss returned $3.40 to win.
After a sensational two-year-old campaign, the Melissa Essig trained gelding celebrated his third seasonal victory in five outings. Owned and bred by Jacalyn Beeman, Dontfusswithruss now has career earnings in excess of $250,000 after winning six of 13 starts last year, including the Indiana Sire Stakes Final for two-year-old trotting colts.
Dontfusswithruss will advance to the $200,000 final Saturday, July 14. The race will be part of Hoosier Champions Night, featuring more than $1 million in purses for the Indiana Sire Stakes. Friday, July 13 will also be part of the national harness racing promotion, “Back to the Track” night. The Indiana Standardbred Association will offer several addition promotions and giveaways throughout the weekend to mark the final night of harness racing for 2012.
The win with Dontfusswithruss was one of eight wins on the 14-race card for Tetrick, who tied the record for most wins in one night at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, a record held by Don Irvine Jr. and Eric Ledford. Tetrick was victorious in the last five races on the card. He also steered Cam’s Flight and Can’t Beat This Kid for trainer Robert Taylor, and Elian’s Boy for Jim Dailey earlier on the card. Tetrick reached the winner’s circle in the night cap with the 3-year-old filly CC’s Munchkin in 1:56.3, a filly that is not only trained by Tetrick but also owned by his older brother, Tim Tetrick.
The 25-year-old reignsman is quickly approaching another milestone; Trace Tetrick is only 16 wins away from his 2000th career win. Tetrick had his best year to date in 2011 when he recorded over $4 million in purse earnings and 391 wins, almost doubling his stats in years past. Tetrick also currently leads all Hoosier Park drivers with 117 trips to the winner’s circle and over $950,000 in purse earnings.