Rockeyed scores at Dover Downs again

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Ted Black

April 12th, 2016

Monday evening kicked off the closing week of the long winter-spring meet at Dover Downs and the normally strong program at the Delaware five-eighths mile oval was highlighted by a quartet of fast miles.

Heading the way was Rockeyed Optimist, a five-year-old pacer trained by Steve Elliott who has emerged as one of the top Free-For-All pacers in the land. Rockeyed Optimist bypassed the ultra-tough Levy series, but Monday evening he again proved that he is among the nation's elite older horses when he overcame a first over journey and wore down Atta Boy Dan to capture the $36,000 Open/Preferred Handicap in 1:48.2 for his fifth win in seven starts this year.

But there were also several other fast clockings on the card. Just A Jolt, one of the local stalwarts who has honed his talents for trainer Jim King, jr. at both Dover and Harrington, led throughout to capture the "Winners Over" class in 1:49.2. Both Sparky Mark won a split conditioned event in 1:50.1 and 1:50.2, respectively, for trainers Trish Foulk and Tim Crissman.

Later that same evening at Yonkers Raceway, Sapphire City regained his fondness for the New York half-mile oval by capturing a conditioned event for pacers in wire-to-wire fashion in 1:52 for trainer Paul Blumenfeld. Sapphire City tried the Levy series twice but was unlucky in the draw and exited the series to notch his second win in eight starts this year. He now sports a solid 47-37-15 slate and $1.14 million bankroll from 202 career outings, attaining his latest tally by outlasting another Saturday night Yonkers regular Fameous Western.