It will be Showcase of Champions Night at Ocean Downs, the climax of the 2013 Maryland Standardbred Race Fund (MSRF) season, with more than $576,000 in purses on the program. And yes, five of the races are non-wagering stakes with just one horse in each race … a walkover.
But when you are a fledgling state just starting to get your breeding program back on course, it’s a just reward to those who stayed with the breeding program in Maryland. In the seasons to come people will be breeding a lot more to Maryland stallions in hopes of grabbing a slice of the big purses.
It won’t be as easy as tomorrow night’s five of seven walkovers, but with the MSRF Finals each being raced for between $73,000 and $100,270 per division, the incentive is there for owners to bring their broodmares and breed them to Maryland stallions for the future.
Each of the seven MSRF finals are named in memory of great horsemen who helped develop, race and support the Standardbred industry in Maryland: They are Ralph Hayward, W.W. “Pete” Shaw, Earl M. Wagner, Charles Keller, Ronald “Doc” Banning, Wayne Smullin and Hubert Jackson. Family members have been invited to dinner at the track and to make the trophy presentations.
There will be two divisions of finals that will be raced on the wagering portion of the card.
They are the first race, the $73,000 final for 3-year-old pacing colts. Heading the field will be Roger Hans’ Firecracker Steady, who has won seven of eight starts this year and has a record of 1:53.3. The $73,000 third race will be for 3-year-old pacing fillies and will feature Donnie Ben Jamin, who will start from post six and who has won four of her six starts for trainer Judith Welty.
The walkover horses will be:
$75,225 2-year-old colt trot -- Doc Danning;
$75,225 2-year-old filly trot -- Ruby Rayne;
$75,225 2-year-old filly pace -- Coming Out On Top
$75,225 2-year-old colt pace -- Spinout; and
$100,270 3-year-old colt trot -- Perfect Tententen