Downbytheseaside wins $308,060 Hap Hansen Progress Pace

Owners, family, trainer and track officials with Downbytheseaside after he won the Hap Hansen Progress Pace Final at Dover Downs. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

DOVER — Downbytheseside went out a winner, rushing to a 1:48.3 victory in his final race prior to stallion duty Thursday night in the $308,060 Hap Hansen Progress Pace at Dover Downs.

Driver Chris Page directed the convincing victory, his 14th of the season with a separately owned Brian Brown stablemate Fear The Dragon second.

Downbytheseaside crossing the finish line with a good lead over the rst of the field. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

Russell Foster won two of the four $100,000 DSBF Two-Year-Old Dover Downs Finals on Thursday, the biggest day in 2017 Delaware harness racing.

Page moved the Somebeachsomewhere colt quickly into the lead after a :26.2 opening panel. From there on it was all Downbytheseaside. The three-year-old passed the half in :54.2 and reached the three-quarters in 1:21.1 with Fear The Dragon (David Miller) 3-lengths off.

Downbytheseaside (2) moving up in the field as they near the halfway point in the 10th race at Dover Downs. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

A :27.1 final dash sealed the victory for owners Joe Sbrocco, Rich Lombardo, Country Club Acres and Diamond Creek Racing. For Page, who was a Dover Downs regular several years back, it was the fifth time he drove Downbytheseaside, all wins.

David Miller was high on Fear The Dragon’s effort as well. “I thought he could go in 1:49, but the race was in 1:48.3.” Bandolito and Heston Blue Chip share the track record of 1:48.

Driver Chris Page going to the winners circle after Downbytheseaside won the Hap Hansen Progress Pace Final.. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

This was the third edition of the Hap Hansen Progress Pace, so-named. Previously, one became the track’s signature event in 1996, until adding the name of one of the sport’s leading administrators, who was a part of the late Brandywine Raceway and Dover Downs.

Russell Foster was star of the four $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund (DSBF). The 28-year-old Foster drove two of the winners in his personal biggest day in the sport.

In the DSBF freshman filly trot, Foster guided Serendipity Sable’s homebred Star Sapphire conditioned by Tui Stone to her third straight triumph with a near wire-to-wire 1:59 performance. From the first crop of Anders Bluestone-Victory Starburst, she won the $100,000 Harrington final and now has a seasonal total of $125,650. Race favorite Vandalous (Corey Callahan) finished second.

Foster returned in the $100,000 Colt Pace, nipping race favorite Evolution Tour (Tim Tetrick) by a nose in 1:51. George Leager, bred, owns and trains the No Spin Zone-Queen Kathy colt who has made the winner’s circle nine times in 11 starts with two second earning $151.797. Transitioning Joy (Montrell Teague) finished third after leaving from outside post 8.

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