Nova Artist won the $30,000 Preferred, 6-1 Sunshine Superman took the $27,500 Delaware Special, and another 6-1 shot, All Steinam, scored in the $17,500 Open Pace at Dover Downs on Thursday, Jan. 9.
For the fourth time this meet, Nova Artist reigned supreme in a top Thursday feature race. The pride of former Delaware champion Eddie Davis, now a trainer, and his wife, Kathy, was strongest in a :27.3 stretch charge to score a 1:50.2 victory in the $30,000 Preferred/Open Handicap pace. Allan Davis drove the Real Artist-Avon Lady horse to his 31st career victory earning $788,167. EZ Noah, racing third from the start, scooted down the passing lane for Vic Kirby, to edge front-pacing Adventure Bound and Ron Pierce for third.
Sunshine Superman zipped away from the starting gate to assume the lead and despite a challenge from Papa Ray (Pierce) on the backstretch, collected a 1:51.1 victory in the $27,500 Del. Special. Owned, trained and driven by Toby Lynch, the Rocknroll Hanover-Carolina Sunshine gelding won for the first time this meet but 19th lifetime and the 7-year-old has won $281,388.
Feel Like A Fool (George Dennis) streaked down the passing lane to finish second. Simon's Artist (Vic Kirby), an early leader, was the show horse.
All Steinam, fifth in midstretch, got out and flew past the leaders for a 1:51.1 triumph in the $17,500 4&5-Year-Old Open. Vic Kirby steered the Tell All-Odds On Stienam gelding to victory in his first local appearance for trainer Josh Green and owners Baron Racing and VIP Internet Stable. Mr. Dennis (Pierce) was also in the tight finish for second place nipping Bandolito (Daryl Bier).
Pierce piloted Beavercreek Artist to victory in 1:52.4 to win a $15,000 Male Winners-Over pace. It was the second win in-a-row for the Artiscape-Spring Chick gelding, trained by Eric Ell for owners Ken Wood, Bill Dittmar and Steve Iaquinta. Summer Camp (Chris Page) stormed down the stretch to finish second. Valentino (Trace Tetrick) was third.
A co-fastest race on the card was a 1:50.2 success for classy Jeremy's Successor, in a $12,500 Male pace. Handled by Ron Pierce, the Mach Three-Gentle Audrey 10-year-old, conditioned by Crissy Bier, held off Dreamfair Kovu (Jim Morand) and Main A Dieu Too (Corey Callahan).
Allan Davis and Ron Pierce racked up three driving wins each, Vic Kirby doubled. (Dover)