2003 Wa. Co. Fair Review: Thursday, September 11, 2003
Thursday, September 11 was the last day of racing at the fair -- but definitely not the
least day of racing. There were 18 races, 111 horses entered, and two novelty races, a
race under saddle and an Amish race.
The track was lightning fast, but there were two horses that absolutely scorched the
track and set new track records for their respective gaits.
|Dunkster and Driver Kurt Sugg on
their way to setting a new track record of 1:57.3
DUNKSTER and local trainer-driver Kurt Sugg shattered the 11-year-old track trotting
record of 1:583 in the sixth race, the Dr. Mairs Memorial Trot.
Sugg took DUNKSTER right to the top off of the gate and never looked back, trotting
every quarter under :30. ANASTASIA AJAY, driven by Don McKirgan, was the only horse that
could trot with Sugg and DUNKSTER down to the quarter pole, which was reached in :292,
a large gap existed back to third, where ULTIMATE MESSAGE and driver Jim Pantaleano
The top pair stayed one-two to the half-mile pole, reached in :584, where
Sugg started to pull away from McKirgan and ANASTASIA AJAY. First it was one length and
then three lengths as the leader hit the three-quarter pole in 1:283.
Around the last turn and down the stretch DUNKSTER put it into another gear and stretched his
lead over ANASTASIA AJAY to four and one-half lengths and crossed the wire in an
astounding 1:573. ULTIMATE MESSAGE captured the show spot.
DUNKSTER, a chestnut 4-year-old gelded trotter by Striking Sahbra, is owned by Scott
Davis of Belle Valley, Ohio.
|Dunkster and Driver Kurt Sugg put it
into another gear
Dunkster's record performance was immediately followed by another in the seventh race
on Thursday. The $6,600 Max Kister Memorial Pace saw ODYSSEUS A and driver Dave Hawk
fry the pacing track record set one day earlier by SECRET HARBOR and Greg Grismore.
|Odysseus A leading to the quarter-pole
on his way to a new track record
Hawk took ODYSSEUS A right to the top from the rail post position and made a
hard-leaving MATTS WALLER and Bret Miller take a seat in the two hole as MAGIC DART sat
third going to the quarter pole in a blistering :271. They moved toward the
half-mile and ODYSSEUS As stablemate, MONTURO and driver Josh Kash, pulled to
challenge the leaders, but then hung on the outside of MATTS WALLER as ODYSSEUS A tripped
the timer in :563.
They moved to the three-quarter pole with ODYSSEUS A in front and MATTS WALLER boxed-in
at the rail by MONTURO. The three-quarters was timed in 1:252. They stayed that
way until late stretch, at which point a tiring MONTURO drifted out and gave MATTS WALLER
the room he needed to get out of the trap he was in -- but it was too late as ODYSSEUS A
got to the wire first in a new track record time of 1:543.
|Monturo (far left) and stablemate Odysseus A
box in Matt's Waller
ODYSSEUS A, an 8-year-old bay gelded pacer, is owned by Jenny Belcher and David Slyman
of Ohio and is trained by Bob Belcher.
Wooster trainers found their niche on Thursday with many finishes in the money.
The second race, the first division of the FFA Pace, saw two locally trained horses race:
MR STAR and VIPER SPUR. Trainer Steve Landfair teamed up with driver Kurt Sugg on
VIPER SPUR to get a win. VIPER SPUR and Sugg had to come from the back of the pack in
the last turn and go four wide down the stretch to win it on the far outside in
1:59.4h. MR STAR trained by Gary Hites finished a disappointing sixth with driver Bruce
Sturgeon in the bike.
|Viper Spur and Kurt Sugg at the back
of the pack would win down the lane
The third race, first division of the Tri-County-Pace, saw four local trainers
send their horses to post: CD BAD BOY and trainer Pat Clark, TOMMY D and trainer Kurt Sugg,
REO LYNDA and trainer Gary Hites, and ALEXANDER F trained by Jon G. Wengerd. With four
entries from Wooster and only six horses in the race you would have thought the odds of
a Wooster win were great, but it was not the case as SUGARBUG and driver Charlie Wyers
trounced the Wayne County trainers going gate to wire in 1:59.3h, PENTIUM CHIP was second,
and Pat Clark driving CD BAD BOY up the inside down the stretch managed a third
place finish. ALEXANDER F was fourth, REO LYNDA fifth, and the lone two-year-old in
the race, TOMMY D, finished sixth.
|Local horses sit 3-4-5-6
just past quarter-pole
Race 8, Richard H. Snyder Memorial Trot for two and three-year-old Maidens, gave
local trainer-driver Jon G. Wengerd and his three-year-old Overcomer colt,
THE WEDDINGS OVER, a third place finish. STRIKING JOY and driver Clair Umholtz won by
eight lengths in 2:08.2h. TIME INTHE BOX and driver Eldon Spearman were second.
|The Weddings Over moving on
the far outside in the eighth race
The twelfth race, second division of the Tri-County Pace, saw two local horses entered:
KNOTEWORTHY WOLF for Jon G. Wengerd, and SINGLE BUBBA for Dan Miller. However, the Wayne
County trainers hope for a win got stomped as DOCTOR GUS and driver Jim Pantaleano went
wire to wire winning by over 12 lengths in 1:59.2h. SINGLE BUBBA put in a valiant effort
to finish second, while WAKESHIRE WILLIS was third. KNOTEWORTHY WOLF managed to get fourth.
|Doctor Gus leads, Single Bubba sits
second on the rail, followed by Knoteworthy Wolf
Ralph Miller started his horse SOLAR LASER in the thirteenth race. A Non-Winners of $3,000 lifetime
condition trot, but after driving him hard to the quarter pole the horse made a nasty break and Ralph
decided to pull him up and not finish the race.
|Solar Laser breaks at the quarter in
Race 13 and does not finish the race
The seventeenth race, third division of the FFA Trot, saw six horses go post-ward and
three entries from area trainers: IRISH JAKE for the Gary Hites stable, M-TWENTYTWO
from the Ron Wagner Stable, and BOSTON BLAZE out of the Jon G. Wengerd barn.
But it was Ron Wagner and M-TWENTYTWO who threw down the gauntlet and played catch me
if you can by firing off the gate and taking the lead, trotting down to the quarter
in 30.4. In the turn past the quarter BOSTON BLAZE and trainer-driver Jon Wengerd
pulled from the back and started grinding his way toward the front to challenge the
leader. By the half in 1:02.3 he was sitting second on the outside
about a length off M-TWENTYTWO. ARNON and Bill Irvine sitting in the
pocket behind Wagner made a break just past the half, as did a fourth sitting IRISH JAKE.
|M-TwentyTwo leads them down to the
They headed down to the three quarter pole as a team, tripping the timer in 1:32.4. While
ARNON and IRISH JAKE, both back trotting, stalked the leaders five lengths back. However,
the grinding outside trip caught up with BOSTON BLAZE in the final turn and he jumped
offstride. Leaving M-TWENTYTWO and Wagner with clear sailing to the wire, crossing it
in 2:04.1h. IRISH JAKE made it a Wooster-perfecta getting up for second, and ARNON took the
show spot. BOSTON BLAZE scraped out a fifth place finish once he got back trotting.
|M-TwentyTwo (right) and Boston Blaze
outside (left) followed by Irish Jake and Arnon
|Irish Jake and driver Bruce Sturgeon
Race eighteen saw trainer Tony Raber send his trotting mare STRIKING LIGHTING out to the
track for the fourth division of the FFA Trot. She gave it the old college try, but couldn't
catch the Belcher trainee of OLD MAC MOON and driver Dave Hawk. They went gate to wire in
2:01.4h, winning by seven lengths over place finisher STRIKING LIGHTING. CINDERELLA'S MAN and
driver Jim Larrabee took third.
|Old Mac Moon leading to the three-quarters
with Kurt Sugg showing Striking Lighting the whip sitting right behind second
An overall recap of Thursdays races saw four divisions of the FFA TROT with the
blanket trophy going to BRIGHTON ROCK N who trotted in 2:01.3h. Other divisional winners
were, OLD MAC MOON in 2:01.4h, M-TWENTYTWO in 2:04.1, and MAINGATE MS FINAL in 2:06h.
The FFA PACE only had two divisions and the trophy went to JENDEH who got a big upset win
over BEEDIS by pacing in 1:58.3h. The other division was won by VIPER SPUR in 1:59.4h.
The Non-Winners $3,000 Lifetime Trot had two divisions with the blanket going to
MARIO'S ROYALTY for an effort of 2:06.1h. The other division was won by ROMANZA in
The Non-Winners $2,000 Lifetime Pace had two divisions with the trophy blanket going to
FAST GOIN ALEXIS who paced home in 2:02.4h. The other divisional winner was DAZZLING ROXANN
The Richard H. Snyder Memorial Trot for Maiden 2-3 Year Old Trotters had two divisions with
JANES FIRST HERO taking home the trophy for trotting in 2:06.1h. STRIKING JOY and driver
Clair Umholtz took the other division in 2:08.2h.
The Tri-County Pace, Wayne, Stark, Medina Owned or Trained had two divisions the fastest
being DOCTOR GUS in 1:59.2h. SUGARBUG took the other division in 1:59.4h.
The Max Kister Memorial Pace had only one division racing for a $6,600 purse that went
to ODYSSEUS A who set a new track record by pacing in 1:54.3h!
The Dr. Mairs Memorial Trot had two divisions and the trophy and a new track record went
to DUNKSTER who trotted home in 1:57.3h. The other division was won by MOLDED BAY in
The Riding Under Saddle race was won by Nadine Case riding GAINESVILLE in 2:05.3h.
The Amish Race saw YANKEE and Merlin Hershberger win a half-mile dash in 1:10.2h.
|Amish horses Yankee and Duane Duane racing up the backstretch
See the archived Thursday, Sept. 11, 2003 Wa. Co. Fair Entries
See the archived Thursday, Sept. 11, 2003 Wa. Co. Fair Results
Last Updated: September 14, 2003; 12:55 PM