ANDERSON, Ind.—August 2, 2016—Hoosier Park Racing & Casino played host to a stakes-filled card on Tuesday, August 2, and it was an evening ruled by favorites The 14-race card featured five of the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for the two and three-year-old divisions and the post time favorite delivered in all five divisions. This marked the third round of the $75,000 finals for the three-year-old competitors and the second round of $75,000 finals for the freshman competitors.
Fresh off a convincing win the Indiana Sires Stakes elimination action last week by four and a half lengths, Firstup and Jason Dillander turned in another dominant performance to take home top honors in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old pacing fillies in 1:54. In near gate to wire fashion, Firstup was eased off the gate to settle along the rail in third before ranging up to take the lead. She dictated middle fractions of :28, :57.2, and 1:26.4 before cruising to the wire under a hand drive. Using a :27.1 final quarter, Firstup finished three lengths in front of Always Giggling and Andy Shetler. As the heavy betting favorite, Firstup returned $4.40 at the betting windows.
Trained by Robert Taylor, the two-year-old daughter of Rockin Image-Sand Pleasure notched her third consecutive Hoosier Park victory and third lifetime victory from six starts. Owned by Bumkum Valley Stable, Mack Racing Stables, and D. Riccolo, Firstup has now earned $60,000 lifetime.
Not to be outdone by her 2-year-old counterpart, Seventimesavirgin also turned in a gutsy victory to score her fourth consecutive victory at Hoosier Park, tonight in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing fillies. Driven and trained by John DeLong, Seventimesavirgin benefitted from a pocket trip to score in 1:50.2, a new lifetime best performance.
Rockalina and Mike Peterson dictated fractions of :26.1, :55.1 and 1:23.1 while DeLong waited patiently in the pocket. As the field turned for home, the fractions began to take its toll on the leader and DeLong gave Seventimesavirgin the green light. She exploded with a :26.4 final quarter to finish five lengths in front of Can’t Touch This and Eric Goodell. As the 3/5 post time favorite, Seventimesavirgin returned $3.20 to her backers at the betting windows.
“She’s been so great,” DeLong noted in the winner’s circle. “She loves pacing home and the trips have worked out for us these last few starts. It’s been a lot of fun.”
Owned by Jesse DeLong, the daughter of Always A Virgin-Mrs Grant Seven notched her seventh victory of the season from eight starts and is undefeated in three $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for three-year-old pacing fillies this season. Seventimesavirgin has now amassed $229,740 lifetime while winning 12 of 20 lifetime outings.
Fly Jesse Fly didn’t disappoint as the post time favorite as he went gate to wire in his assignment in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings, stopping the timer in 1:53.3.
Fly Jesse Fly and Trace Tetrick used their customary front-running tactics to dictate fractions of :28.1, :57.2, and 1:25.1 before ever feeling a threat. Bridge To Jesse’s and John DeLong were applying pressure to the outside as the field straightened away for home but Fly Jesse Fly didn’t waiver. Bridge To Jesse’s made a costly break late in the lane and Fly Jesse Fly coasted home to win by two lengths. The Ron Otto trainee returned $3.00 for the victory.
“He’s a very nice horse,” Otto noted in the winner’s circle. “He takes great care of himself, he practically trains himself. He rests when he needs to rest and is all business when he needs to be. He’s been a pleasure to have in the barn.”
With the win, Fly Jesse Fly notched his seventh win from 11 starts while pushing his seasonal earnings to $139,962. Owned by Robert Sidley and James Otto, the gelded son of Jailhouse Jesse-Flying Rae has now won 10 of 24 lifetime outings.
The $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings was up next and after an eventful mile, it was Rock N Tony and Trace Tetrick who delivered as the 6-5 post time favorite, winning in a new lifetime best of 1:52.3.
On The Virg, driven by Eric Goodell, and Man of Excess, driven by Brandon Bates were the early breakers and scattered the field through the early stages of the race. Rock N Tony was third along the rail through the opening panel in :27 but Tetrick was unwilling to take any chances and sent his colt to the front. Rock N Tony grabbed the lead just past the half in :56.2 but Unofficial Business and Tyler Smith were quickly applying pressure to the outside. As the rest of the field closed in, Tetrick asked Rock N Tony for more and he responded gamely with a :27.2 closing quarter to get the victory by two lengths. Beckhams Z Tam and Ricky Macomber Jr. finished a game second while Ponda’s Prospect and John DeLong rallied nicely to finish third.
Trained by Erv Miller, Rock N Tony notched his third lifetime victory from four outings. The gelded son of Rockin Image-Pandemonious has now earned $63,500 for owners Anthony Lombardi and Rocco Ruffolo.
The $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings rounded out the stakes action for the evening and produced an exciting stretch duel won by the heavy post time favorite, Bourbon Chase and Dan Shetler. The 1:50.3 victory was not only the second consecutive Hoosier Park victory for Bourbon Chase but also a new lifetime mark.
LeWayne Miller sent Mystical Rock away from the gate firing to set the early tempo of :25.4. Shetler made his game winning move down the backside as Bourbon Chase grabbed command just past the half in :54.3 and never looked back. As the field turned for home, Enoch and Terry Cullipher were gaining ground first-over on the outside while Duel of Truth and John DeLong were also a staging a big rally in the passing lane. Using a :27.4 final quarter, Bourbon Chase withstood all challengers to get the victory by a half length.
“I always knew he was a nice colt,” Shetler noted in the winner’s circle. “Maybe not this nice, but he’s always been a good colt. He’s still very green but he just keeps getting better with every start. He’s getting race smart and has a lot of ability.”
Owned by Kristin Shetler and Dan Shetler, the three-year-old gelded son of Palone Ranger-Stonebridge Beauty has now won seven of nine lifetime starts. Unraced at two, Bourbon Chase has now earned $101,350 lifetime.
Live racing will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Wednesday, August 3 with a 14-race card that will feature two $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for the two-year-old trotters. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., live racing at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com.
Hoosier Park Racing & Casino recently announced the addition of 12 overnight series and special overnight races to compliment Indiana’s most prestigious pacing race, the Dan Patch Stakes on Friday, August 12. With an estimated purse of $300,000, The Dan Patch Stakes will serve as Indiana’s richest harness race and will now be supported by an all-star, 14-race card that includes overnight series action.
“With Dan Patch weekend being the biggest racing event of the year we wanted to put together a solid undercard for our signature race,” Hoosier Park’s Director of Racing and Racing Secretary, Scott Peine noted. “In conjunction with the Dan Patch Stakes, hopefully these additional overnight series will bring the best out of some of our most competitive classes.”
All of the Dan Patch overnight series and races will be on Hoosier Park’s condition sheets and can be found on Hoosier Park’s website as soon as they are made available. To see a full list of the Dan Patch overnight series and special races, please click here.
Each of the overnight series will be comprised of a preliminary leg with the finals being contested on Friday, August 12. Also included for the Dan Patch card is a $30,000 Gregg Haston Memorial Invitational pace. The race is named in honor of driver Gregg Haston, who was killed in an automobile accident in 1996. Haston, a native of Indiana, was the track’s leading driver and trainer during the inaugural live racing season.
Once again, the Dan Patch Stakes will highlight the 2016 harness racing season as the best in the sport of harness racing will descend upon the seven-eighths mile oval seeking glory in Hoosier Park’s signature harness racing event. As part of a weekend long festival of entertainment and racing, the purse for the 2016 Dan Patch is estimated to be $300,000 with the field being comprised of the top ten highest lifetime money earners.
The race will be part of a special weekend tagged as “Dan Patch Festival Weekend” and will feature extreme entertainment, giveaways, and racing. The evening will also be complimented by Indiana Sires Stakes action and specialty wagers. On Saturday, Hoosier Park will host “Thrillyard 200” featuring helicopter rides, zip-lining and a food truck festival for racing fans. Live racing on Saturday will be held at an adjusted post time of 4:30 p.m. to prepare for a free concert by country music legends Asleep At The Wheel in the Outdoor Music Center. The entire evening will be culminated by a free fireworks show at 10:00 p.m
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., the 2016 season of live harness racing will be conducted through November 12.
For the first time this season, a track record was re-established at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino during the evening’s 13-race card on Tuesday, July 19. Fly Jesse Fly kicked the evening’s program off with a bang as he lowered the track record for three-year-old trotting geldings to 1:53.2 in the first race of the program. The 1:53.2 mark was a new lifetime best for Fly Jesse Fly and re-established the track record for three-year-old trotting geldings, a mark that was previously co-held by Rose Run Parker and Homicide Hunter.
Fly Jesse Fly used his customary front-running tactics and left aggressively from post seven to grab command before the opening quarter in :27.1. The Ron Otto trainee dictated fractions of :56.1 and 1:25.2 while the rest of the field struggled to stay within striking distance.
As the field turned for home, Fly Jesse Fly’s lead was ever-increasing. Late Bid Tom and Jason Dillander were next in line second but the quick pace was beginning to take its toll. Dreamstyle Herbie and Ross Leonard were next in line third but Topville Avatar and Dale Hiteman were gaining ground in fourth. Tetrick simply asked his mount for more and Fly Jesse Fly used a :28 final quarter to coast home a winner by three lengths. Topville Avatar rallied for second while Dreamstyle Herbie rounded out the trifecta.
It was the second consecutive Hoosier Park victory for the son of Jailhouse Jesse-Flying Rae and fifth seasonal victory from nine outings. He was also victorious in the last round of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings; handing Bridge To Jesse’s his first loss of the season.
Owned by Robert Sidley and James Ronald Otto, Fly Jesse Fly has bankrolled $92,462 throughout his three-year-old campaign. Fly Jesse Fly will look to make his next start in the third round of Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings slated for July 26 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino.
It was a training double for Ron Otto as he also scored with veteran pacer JJ’s Gazette in “The Old Codger” pace later in the program. The 14-year-old gelding stopped the timer in 1:53.3 to notch his 62nd career victory from 330 lifetime starts.
Live racing returns to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Wednesday, July 20 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
Continuing upon the successes of the second edition in 2015, Hoosier Park Racing & Casino is proud to announce the third annual All-Star Drivers Series for the 2016 harness racing season. The 2016 All-Star Drivers Series will pit the top-ten drivers at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino against one another in a five-race challenge not once, but twice, throughout the season with the champion driver winning a dream prize of their choice, a $10,000 cash prize, an exotic vacation, or their favorite “always wanted to have” toy.
“When we embarked upon the Drivers Challenge two years ago we knew we were going down a road that had yet to be traveled,” Hoosier Park’s Vice President and General Manager of Racing, Rick Moore said. “Would the format that we chose work or would we need to rethink the way drivers drafted their horses?”
“Well, the answer to that question was that the format was a resounding success as witnessed by the wild and unpredictable outcome of the last two years of competition. We appreciate all of our drivers at Hoosier Park and are excited that the 2016 All-Star Drivers Challenge will not only highlight their talents but also give them a chance to win a dream prize.”
In the first of the two challenges, the top ten drivers will compete in a five-race competition on Saturday, July 23 for their share of $5,000. The winning driver will take home a check for $3,000 for top honors while the second place driver will earn $1,500 and the third place driver earning $500. The rankings will be based on number of wins at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino as of Saturday, July 16, 2016. The drivers will pick their horses via a draft system to be held in the following order:
1st race: Number 1 ranked driver picks first, number 2 picks second, etc.
2nd race: Number 10 ranked driver picks first, number 9 picks second, etc.
3rd race: Same as first race
4th race: Same as second race
5th race: same as first
The top eight finishers from Round 1 will return for Round 2 on Saturday, October 22 with the final two positions being determined by the official Hoosier Park standings at the conclusion of racing on Saturday, October 15.
While the second go-round will be conducted in the same manner as the first, the winner of the final challenge will not only be crowned the champion of the 2016 All-Star Drivers series but also have their choice of a dream prize.
Jason Dillander took home top honors in last year’s edition of the All-Star Drivers series. Dillander won the final round of the challenge by a narrow margin and was awarded a Hawaiian vacation for four, a prize valued at $15,000
“I’m definitely excited,” Dillander said. “I thought it would be hard to top a vacation but giving the drivers a chance to choose their prize is really cool. We have a lot of fun with this every year and kudos to everyone at Hoosier Park for bringing it back again this year. Of course, I hope I win it.”
Qualifying for the 2016 All-Star Drivers Series began on Friday, April 1 and continued through Saturday, July 16 for Round 1. Each of the drafts will take place at a community luncheon to be held at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. For more information on the 2016 All-Star Drivers Series, please visit Hoosier Park’s website.
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule throughout the remainder of the meet. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., live racing will be conducted through November 12, 2016. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
ANDERSON, Ind.—July 2, 2016—On an evening stacked with stakes races, it was a $12,500 claiming event that stole the show at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, July 2 as Boogie Nights made his racing debut for First Turn Stable, Hoosier Park’s first fractional ownership opportunity, a winning one. In near gate-to-wire fashion, Boogie Nights and Jason Dillander crossed the wire nearly two lengths in front of the next closest competitor and stopping the timer in 1:51.4, a new lifetime best performance.
Boogie Nights was sent away from the gate firing from post eight and grabbed the early lead through an opening quarter in :26.3. Henry Blue Chip ranged up to take the lead at the half mile station in :55.4 but Boogie Nights was back out for more and grabbed the lead approaching the final turn.
As the field turned for home, Boogie Nights was on top and used a :27.1 final quarter to get the victory. Trained by Jeff Cullipher, Boogie Nights notched his second victory of the season and 13th lifetime victory. Several members from the stable were on hand and excitedly joined in the winner’s circle, many visiting the winner’s circle for the first time.
“That was very exciting,” Quincy Cunningham, member of First Turn Stable, noted in the winner’s circle. “I’ve watched a number of horse races in my life but it’s definitely more exciting when you own part of one.”
Unfortunately as the claiming game goes, Boogie Nights was claimed for $12,500 out of the race tonight. Cullipher will start the process of finding another horse for First Turn Stable immediately.
“It’s a great feeling to see so many people in the winner’s circle,” Cullipher noted after the race. “The horse raced great and it is unfortunate he got claimed but that’s part of the game. We’re glad he could get the win for them tonight, it’s a pleasure to be a part of an opportunity like this.”
The first of its kind in the state of Indiana, First Turn Stable was recently launched at Hoosier Park and designed to provide fans an easy and affordable way to experience the excitement of horse ownership for a one-time, $250 buy-in.
Updates for First Turn Stable will be posted weekly and via e-mail so members can follow along with the racing action throughout the season. Along with interactive social media pages, monthly financials will be shared with the group to provide a transparent and behind-the-scenes look into the real costs of owning a racehorse. On-site teaching tools and other resources will also be made available to the members.
Live racing will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, July 5 at 5:45 p.m. Following a Tuesday through Saturday schedule, live racing at Hoosier Park will be conducted through November 12, 2016. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
ANDERSON, Ind.—June 30, 2016—On Saturday, July 2 the dream of being a Standardbred race horse owner will come true for 50 people, courtesy of First Turn Stable at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. While much of the harness racing world will be focused on the numerous stakes races around the country on Saturday, 50 first time horse owners will have their attention directed to the seventh race of the program at Hoosier Park as Boogie Nights makes his debut appearance for Hoosier Park’s new ownership club.
Boogie Nights is a six-year-old gelded pacer who has made $74,949 in lifetime purse earnings. Sired by one of Indiana’s leading pacing sires, Always A Virgin, Boogie Nights has won 12 of his 83 lifetime starts and took his lifetime mark of 1:52 at the age of four. The brown gelding has had 13 starts while earning $10,010 in 2016.
Claimed out of a $10,000 race last Saturday at Hoosier Park, the brown gelding has now been entrusted to trainer Jeff Cullipher who has been assigned the training duties for First Turn Stable. With Jason Dillander in the bike, Boogie Nights will start from post eight in the field of nine and has been tabbed 6-1 on the morning line.
“First Turn Stable’s 50 new owners are about to experience something probably to a person they never dreamed of; that being the thrill of watching their very own horse race,” Hoosier Park’s Vice President and General Manager of Racing, Rick Moore noted. “Best of luck to all of them!”
The first of its kind in the state of Indiana, First Turn Stable was recently launched at Hoosier Park and designed to provide fans an easy and affordable way to experience the excitement of horse ownership for a one-time, $250 buy-in.
Members of First Turn Stable will be treated to the on-track perks of racehorse ownership while experiencing firsthand the economics of what it takes to own a Standardbred racehorse. Updates for First Turn Stable will be posted weekly on the social media sites and via e-mail so members can follow along with the racing action throughout the season. Members are encouraged to like First Turn Stable on Facebook to stay updated with the daily happenings of the stable.
Along with interactive social media pages, monthly financials will be shared with the group to provide a transparent and behind-the-scenes look into the real costs of owning a racehorse. On-site teaching tools and other resources will also be made available to the members.
Hoosier Park’s 14-race card on Saturday will also feature a $21,000 Invitational Pace and three divisions of $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for three-year-old pacing colts. The first race will line up behind the gate at 5:45 p.m.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
In a first-of-its-kind agreement, the United States Harness Writers Association announced Monday (June 27) that Centaur Gaming-owned Hoosier Park will be the lead title sponsor of next year’s Dan Patch Awards banquet in Las Vegas. The event, to be held at Planet Hollywood on Feb. 26, will be named “The 2017 Dan Patch Awards presented by Hoosier Park.”
The Dan Patch Awards are for top equine and human performers, Harness Horse of the Year honors, as well as the first introduction of the newest member(s) to the Hall of Fame.
The spotlight will shine on Hoosier Park in the fall of 2017 when the Breeders Crown makes its first visit to the Indiana racetrack. But several months prior to that big event, Hoosier Park will help direct the limelight toward harness racing’s equine and human stars thanks to a new partnership with another of the sport’s premier festivities.
The awards, first presented in 1947, are named in honor of one of the great stars of the early 20th century — in any sport — the Indiana-born pacer Dan Patch. Born in 1896 in Oxford, Ind., Dan Patch attracted huge crowds wherever he traveled and set numerous world records. His mark of 1:55-1/4 set at age 9 in 1905 stood for more than three decades and his name and image endorsed products from breakfast cereals to washing machines.
Indiana-sired horses have also garnered national attention more recently, with the most notable examples including 2015 Horse of the Year Wiggle It Jiggleit and Breeders Crown champions Always B Miki, Color’s A Virgin, and Freaky Feet Pete, all hailing from the Hoosier State.
“Hoosier Park and Centaur could not be more honored to serve as the first title sponsor for these prestigious awards,” said Jim Brown, president and COO of Centaur Gaming. “Considering Dan Patch was an Indiana-bred made the opportunity feel even more appropriate.
“Indiana harness racing is being recognized nationally, with some of the top horses and racing in the country, and sponsoring the 2017 USHWA awards and hosting the 2017 Breeders Crown races should both contribute to making this a year to remember for Indiana racing.”
The 2017 Dan Patch Awards will honor this season’s top performers, including divisional champions plus Trotter, Pacer, and Horse of the Year.
“This is a great opportunity for USHWA to team up with an outstanding racing organization like Hoosier Park to present our 2017 Dan Patch Awards banquet,” said Tim Bojarski, president of the U.S. Harness Writers Association. “We believe the synergy of this partnership will better enhance the promotion of harness racing and its stars throughout the upcoming year and hope it will lead the way for other entities of the sport to work together for the same reason.
“I can promise everyone a night to remember at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas on Feb. 26, 2017.”
For more information on the Dan Patch Awards presented by Hoosier Park, log onto www.ushwa.org, where all the latest news and announcements will be available throughout the year.
ANDERSON, Ind.—June 15, 2016—In an effort to take harness racing fans from the grandstand to the winner’s circle, Hoosier Park Racing & Casino is excited to announce the launch of a new, fractional ownership program for the 2016 harness racing season. The first of its kind in the state of Indiana, the program is designed to provide fans an easy and affordable way to experience the excitement of horse ownership and educate for future ownership endeavors.
The new program, working under the name First Turn Stables, will allow harness racing fans the chance to experience horse ownership first-hand. For a one-time, $250 buy-in, racing fans can buy a membership into the First Turn Stable and get an insider’s look at what it is like to own and race a Standardbred currently racing at Hoosier Park during the 2016 season. Membership will be limited to 50 people and available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
“This new concept in horse ownership is being introduced with hopes of attracting new owners to the sport at a very low cost while still providing the thrills and excitement of owning a racehorse,” said Rick Moore, Hoosier Park’s vice president and general manager of racing. “Members of the First Turn Stable will be treated to the on-track perks of racehorse ownership while experiencing firsthand the economics of what it takes to own a Standardbred racehorse.”
Updates for the First Turn Stable will be posted weekly and via e-mail so members can follow along with the racing action throughout the season. Members of the stable will also have the opportunity to watch morning training routines and also interact with the trainer and driver after each race.
Along with interactive social media pages, monthly financials will be shared with the group to provide a transparent and behind-the-scenes look into the real costs of owning a racehorse. On-site teaching tools and other resources will also be made available to the members. Members of the stable are encouraged to ‘Like’ the First Turn Stable page on Facebook to stay up to date with the daily happenings of the stable, find the page here: https://www.facebook.com/firstturnstable/ .
At the end of the racing season, the horse’s winnings and costs will be calculated and any profit will be split amongst the 50 owners. If the season were to result in a financial loss, Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will offset the figure to bring the season to a breakeven for the participants.
Racing fans interested in joining First Turn Stables can find more information at www.hoosierpark.com or by calling Nicole Frankowski at 765-609-4831. The First Turn Stable will be open to the public and accepting memberships on Thursday, June 16.
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:45 p.m. The 160-day all harness racing season will be conducted through November 12, 2016.
About Hoosier Park Racing & Casino: Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, a Centaur Gaming destination, holds multiple awards from industry publications for customer service, entertainment, gaming and dining. Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, a fully integrated gaming and racing facility, features 2,000 of the latest slots and electronic table games and a 7/8 mile oval horse track offering live harness racing each year. Simulcast wagering is offered year-round at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, the Winner’s Circle Pub, Grille & OTB in Indianapolis, and the Winner’s Circle OTB and VooDoo BBQ & Grill in New Haven. For more information, please visit www.hoosierpark.com.
Hoosier Park Racing & Casino highlighted the early stages of the 2016 harness racing season with the annual Hoosier Champions night in front of a packed house on Saturday, June 4. The evening’s 14-race card featured the first of five rounds of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for the three-year-old divisions. With heavy rain in the area earlier in the day, the track was rated sloppy for the first seven races but was upgraded to good just before the stakes action got underway in the evening’s eighth race.
The action-packed night opened with the first $75,000 final for three-year-old trotting fillies and Oh La La La made a clean sweep of the opening round of the stakes action as she overcame the outside post eight to score in 1:56.1. Driven by Tyler Smith, Oh La La La took advantage of a second-over trip and used a :27.4 final quarter to score her second consecutive victory by two lengths.
Nothing But Nice and Ricky Macomber Jr. dictated fractions of :28, and :58.0 before Fawn De Savage and Dan Shetler were applying pressure to the outside. Smith had Oh La La La were well placed second-over and when he tipped his mount to the outside, she responded gamely. Just Jess and Doug Rideout, who were sent off as the heavy betting favorite, rallied gamely in the lane but had to settle for second place honors. Fawn De Savage maintained her position to round out the trifecta. Oh La La La returned $10.60 to her backers at the betting windows.
“She’s had a couple issues,” trainer Jeff Smith noted in the winner’s circle. “We’ve worked on those and she has really come around. We were really happy with her last week but she proved tonight she is a really nice filly.”
Oh La La La has now won 5 of 14 lifetime starts and sports a career bankroll of $81,210. The daughter of Here Comes Herbie-Dandelion Dust has won two of her three starts as a sophomore and is owned by Tdtrot LLC.
Fresh off a win in his elimination last week, Bridge To Jesse’s turned in another dominant performance to score in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old trotting colts with driver John DeLong. With a final time of 1:55.1, Bridge To Jesse’s scored his second consecutive victory and established a new lifetime best in the process.
DeLong sent Bridge To Jesse’s away from the gate firing from post nine to grab the lead through an opening panel in :28.4. Their lead would be short lived as Trace Tetrick gave Fly Jesse Fly the green light and they took control just before the half to set :57.4 and 1:27.2 middle fractions.
As the field turned for home, the stage was set for the stretch battle. DeLong tipped Bridge To Jesse’s to the outside from the pocket and the Roger Welch trainee did the rest. Using a :27.3 final quarter, Bridge To Jesse’s trotted to the wire to finish four lengths in front of Fly Jesse Fly. Ktl’s Lucky Strike and Robert Taylor rallied late in the lane to round out the trifecta.
“Well, I knew we had to go forward off the gate from post nine,” driver John DeLong noted in the winner’s circle. “He’s very versatile and is very well mannered. He’s great racing off a helmet so the trip couldn’t have worked out any better for us.”
With the win, Bridge To Jesse’s scored his 12th lifetime victory from 14 lifetime outings. The gelded son of Jailhouse Jesse-Bridge To Nowhere was Indiana’s two-year-old trotting colt champion and has now pushed his lifetime bankroll to $356,593 for owners W. DeLong, W. DeLong, R. DeLong, and R. Welch.
On the pacing side of things, DeLong found the winner’s circle once again, this time with Seventimesavirgin in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for three-year-old pacing fillies. With a final time of 1:53.1, Seventimesavirgin staged a big rally late in the lane to remain undefeated in three starts in her sophomore campaign.
DeLong left aggressively from post four and was able to grab the lead through an opening panel in :27.3. Rick Plano and Diamondtequilashot were the first to take aim at the leader and DeLong yielded command at the second station in :57.1. Diamondtequilashot continued to call the shots at the three-quarter mark in 1:25 but the rest of the field was closing in.
While most of the challengers moved to the outside, DeLong moved Seventimesavirgin up the passing lane and she employed a :27.2 final quarter to finish two lengths to the good. Shady Caroline and Ricky Macomber Jr. closed evenly to finish second while Au D Lox Bluegrass and Trace Tetrick were third.
“She’s a pretty special horse to us,” DeLong noted of the homebred filly after the victory. “She’s been perfect. We put her away on a good note last season so she is really fresh and sharp right now.”
“She’s a big strong mare,” he continued. “This weather changing all the time can be hard on her and she didn’t have the best week this week but she raced awesome tonight. She is pretty special to us, my dad bred her and she was raised right in our backyard. She’s as good as they come for us.”
Trained by John DeLong, Seventimesavirgin has now won eight of 15 lifetime starts. The daughter of Always A Virgin-Mrs Grant Seven has now accumulated $132,190 in lifetime purse earnings for owner Jesse DeLong.
In the very next race, Matrix of Luck and Mike Peterson delivered as the even money favorite in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings with a final time of 1:51. Driven by Mike Peterson, Matrix of Luck made their game winning move down the backside to score their second consecutive victory at Hoosier Park.
Uncmprmising Z Tam and LeWayne Miller were the first to get a call through the opening quarter in :26.1. Peterson gave Matrix of Luck the green light down the backside and he reached the front at the half in :55.3 and then on to the third station in 1:23.1. As the rest of the field started to close in turning for home, Matrix of Luck found another gear. Utilizing a :27.4 final kick, Matrix of Luck cruised to the wire three lengths in front of a hard charging Duel of Truth and John DeLong. Ville Valo and Ricky Macomber Jr. rounded out the trifecta.
“Last week was the first time I drove him and he was awesome,” Peterson noted in the winner’s circle. “He was pretty aggressive last week but he relaxed tonight and really raced liked a professional.”
“I knew everyone would be leaving for position so we settled off the gate but I also didn’t want to get him in trouble so I had to move down the backside. He let me do what I want with him and really raced great. I’d like to thank his connections for the opportunity to drive him.”
Trained by Roger Cullipher, Matrix of Luck notched the second win of his three-year-old season from just three outings. Owned by Brian Carsey, John Mcgill, and Debbie Cullipher, the son of Rockin Image-My Taylor’s Maid was the two-year-old pacing colt champion in the state of Indiana and pushed his lifetime bankroll to $$292,500 with the victory tonight.
Live racing will return to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Tuesday, June 7 with a 13-race card. The 160-day, all harness racing meet will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule with a daily post time of 5:45 p.m. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
Nitro, with John DeLong at the lines, made amends for last week’s second place finish and rolled home a winner in the featured event of the evening, a $21,000 Invitational Pace, at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, May 21. Scoring in gate to wire fashion, Nitro stopped the timer in 1:50.3 and gave driver John DeLong one of his six wins on the 13-race card.
DeLong took no chances and sent Nitro to the front from post five in an abbreviated field of six to grab the top spot through the opening panel in :27.3. Bluehourpower and Ricky Macomber Jr. left just enough to grab a pocket seat while If I Lose and Brian Carpenter were next in line third. The field remained in single file order down the backside as Nitro clicked off fractions of :55.3 and 1:23.4 before ever feeling a threat.
As the field turned for home, Jason Dillander had Shooter’s Dream pointed to the front in the outer flow while Color’s A Virgin and Tyler Smith grabbed the cover second-over. As the rest of the field closed in, DeLong asked his mount for more and Nitro dug in gamely. Using a :26.4 closing quarter, Nitro finished a length and a half in front of the pocket-sitting Bluehourpower. As the only mare in the field, Color’s A Virgin rallied gamely for third place honors. Sent off as the heavy betting favorite, Nitro returned $4.20 at the betting windows.
Traiend by Ron Burke, the six-year-old son of Charley-Barley-Deferred Comp notched his second seasonal victory from 14 outings. Owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino, and C. Hecht, Nitro has now won 20 of 107 lifetime starts and amassed $347,934 lifetime.
In the very next race, John DeLong found the winner’s circle in a conditioned pace with JL Dontwastemytime in 1:52.1 for trainer Trent Stohler. Stohler and Delong also teamed up to get ER Zach Attack home a winner in a claiming event earlier on the card.
Driving in each and every race on the program, DeLong found the winner’s circle for the first time in the third race of the evening with Hot N Shooting for trainer Grant Wilfong and then scored in the very next race with Ok Ferrari for trainer Dylan Davis.
In the $20,000 Steve Gray Memorial Pace, it was Four Socks who turned in a gate to wire effort to score in a new lifetime best of 1:50.1. It was the third victory of the season for the six-year-old son of I Scoot Hanover-Well Hello Dolly who is trained by Mike Murphy.
DeLong is currently second on the leading driver standings at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino with 61 wins on the season through 35 nights of live racing. Hoosier Park’s 2015 leading driver, Trace Tetrick, leads all drivers with 82 wins on the season.
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Tuesday, May 24 with a 14-race card and a daily post time of 5:45 p.m. The 160-day harness racing meet will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com.