Dover Downs Midweek Cards Kick off New Year

Profile Picture: Ted Black

Ted Black

January 4th, 2017

Conditions were hardly ideal for human or equine participants on Monday and Tuesday evenings when Dover Downs offered its first two standardbred cards of the New Year, but a fast track should be in order for Wednesday and Thursday evenings at the Delaware five-eighths mile oval.

Wednesday evenings card will highlight the top trotters on the circuit with a handful of events for pacers mixed in. While many circuits have a difficult time fielding a modest portion of events for trotters, Dover Downs and Harrington, which hosts most of the spring and summer dates, typically dedicated every Wednesday to the trotting gait.

In fact, the first four races on the Dover card on Wednesday are designated for trotters and each of them offers more than a hint of value.

In the opening race on the card, a non-winners of four races or $30,001 lifetime class for five-year-old and younger trotters, look for Criminal Element (Tony Morgan) to kick off the current campaign with a victory. Last year the Daniel Munson trainee sported a 3-2-1 slate and $15,000 bankroll from 20 starts and is one of five horses in the field to win three times last season.
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One race later in the latter half of the early daily double, look for either Windsong Ingenius (Russell Foster), Guiltywithanexcuse (Victor Kirby) or Enrico As (Jonathan Roberts) to settle the issue in the lane in this non-winners of $9001 last six starts class for older trotters. All eight starters earned anywhere from $40,000-$52,000 last season.

Then just past the midway point of the card in the eighth, a non-winners of $12,001 last six starts/optional $25,000 claiming class for trotters, railbound War Cry Hall (Ross Wolfenden) will be a tough customer for trainer Jim King, Jr., while Strong Hope (George Dennis), I'm So Striking (Eddie Dennis), Spunky Jack (Roger Plante, Jr.), Everyone's Talkin (Russell Foster) and Steel Reserve (Kirby) all loom serious threats in this spot. Only Everyone's Talkin and Steel Reserve are in for the tag.

Then two races later in the featured "Winners Over"/Open Handicap for older trotters, Frost Free Hanover (Kirby), Tough Mac (Corey Callahan) and Tag Up And Go (Bret Brittingham) were basically assigned the three outside slots in one draw, while Lou Man (Morgan), Winbak Charles M (Yannick Gingras), Awsome Valley (George Dennis) and former dominant Delaware champion I Like My Boss (Roberts) were involved in the 1-5 draw. Winbak Charles M merits serious respect here for trainer Ed Gannon, Jr. of Looking Hanover fame.