A capacity crowd filled the M&T Bank Grandstand at Harrington Raceway on a warm summer night Thursday evening to watch the first-ever nighttime Governorís Day racing program at the Delaware State Fair.
Macs Journey (Harrington Photo)
For decades the annual day of racing began at 11 a.m., but was moved to the evening for this yearís event. A showcase of Delawareís top owned and/or bred horses were on display over the span of 13 races.
Four separate $100,000 Final events for Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF) three-year-olds were contested among two divisions each that were comprised of both sexes for trotters and pacers.
It wasnít a good day for favourites in the DSBF final events as only one of the four prevailed. The biggest longshot came when Mary Martins Macs Journey ($90.20, Sean Bier) utilized a power surge approaching the top of the stretch to clear tiring favorite Heres My Ticket and hold off a fast closing Roddys Girl for an upset win the filly pacing final in 1:57.
Heres My Ticket held on for third. Trained by Crissy Crissman-Bier, it was the 7th career win in 26 lifetime starts for Macs Journey.
Skuttlebutt (Harrington Photo)
Another favourite went down when Alleigh Girl broke stride behind the gate in the filly trotting final as Morgan and Jeanne McInnisí Skuttlebutt ($8.40, Victor Kirby) strolled to a front end win in a lifetime best of 1:59.3 for trainer Ryan McInnis. A daughter of CR Commando, Skuttlebutt was one of four driving wins for Kirby. Jas Charmer was second while Jodi Lin rallied for third.
Windshield (Harrington Photo)
The favourite did hold up in the trotting colt final as Windshield ($2.10, Ross Wolfenden), owned by Wolfenden with Nanticoke Racing, registered another powerful score with a dominant 13 length win in 1:59. Trained by Les Givens, the Political Briefing colt improved to 14-for-16 in his career. Flash Commando was second and Bold Strike completed the trifecta.
Its Outta Here (Harrington Photo)
In the pacing colt final, Eli Scott and Greg Simendingerís Its Outta Here ($7.40, Kirby) surged by stretch leader Flying Instructor late for a one length score. Shaving Mug was third. Trained by Eli Scott, Its Outta Here bolstered his lifetime bankroll to more than $117,000.
The $40,000 Governorís Cup, $30,000 Legislators Cup, and $30,000 Charles Murphy Memorial Trot are three staples on the Governorís Day program for older horses.
As Bad As Thunder (Harrington Photo)
In the Governorís Cup, favourite Elizabeth Brittinghamís As Bad As Thunder didnít disappoint as he marched to a four length win in 1:52.4 over Jeremys Successor and Volo. The Don Brittingham-trainee has won four straight races and made more than $110,000 this season after being claimed for just $15,000 in February at Dover Downs. The Honorable Governor Jack Markell made the presentation to the winning connections, something he has done each of the last four Governorís Day racing programs.
North State Street Stableís Monochromatic (Corey Callahan) won the Legislatorís Cup in 1:53.2 over Outahere Hanover and No Bad Luck. A Dylan Davis-trainee, Monochromatic surpassed $100,000 in seasonal earnings with the victory.
Kirby piloted Steve Andersonís Sea Raven to a three-length score in 1:55 in the Charles Murphy Memorial Trot. The six-year-old Andover Hall mare wore down the early pacesetter Second Hand News and drew clear by three lengths after a first-over trip for trainer Kay Gannon. Gurf rallied for second while Second Hand News held third.
Live racing resumes on a Monday through Thursday schedule at Harrington August 13.