Some 350 horsemen, legislators and friends of harness racing turned out for the annual Delaware Standardbred Owners Association (DSOA) awards dinner at the Dover Sheraton Hotel Friday.
Preceded by the annual DSOA meeting at mid-day and an early evening cocktail hour, Mistress of Ceremony Heather Moffett presented a colourful, fun-filled video of highlights of her weekly Post Parade programs on WBOC TV followed by highlights of the 2012 racing season featuring top horses of the Dover Downs and the Harrington Raceway meets. The banquet also featured a silent auction to benefit Horse Lovers United, Inc., a not-for-profit organization which provides a residence and care for retired horses.
In addition to leading horsemen and friends in attendance at the banquet were many of Delaware’s top legislative executives. The list included Congressman John Carney; Delaware Secretary of Finance Tom Cook; State Senators Brice Ennis and Gary Simpson; State Legislative Representatives Don Blakey, Gerald Brady, Ruth Briggs-King, Ronald Gray, Harvey Kenton, John Kowalko, Bobby Outten, Michael Ramone, Jeff Spiegelman and Dave Wilson; and former State Senator Nancy Cook, a longtime strong supporter of racing in the First State.
Also in attendance were members of the Delaware Harness Racing Commission, USTA District Directors, DSOA Directors, Harness Hall of Fame publicist John Manzi of Monticello Raceway, along with members of the media.
The second annual James T. Case Jr. DSOA Horizon Award (to a horseman making outstanding progress during year) was presented to harness owner, trainer and driver Daryl Bier, one of the sport’s rising stars.
The James T. Case Jr. $1,000 Scholarship, in memory of the longtime DSOA President, was presented to William Chambers, University of Delaware, Communications & Business Major.
Again this year, the DSOA gave out a total of $6,000 in scholarship awards. The recipients of awards are Bill Connor Brewer, York College; Brooke Gannon, a Nursing major at Wesley College; Kierston Gray, Wor-Wic Community College Major/Secondary Education/Counseling; Danielle Leager, University of Findlay, Physical Therapy; Wade Z. Marsh, Wshington and Lee University, double major Politics and Religion; Danielle McDougall, Delaware State University, Pre-Professional Chemistry.
The DSOA equine award winners were:
Two-Year-Old Trotters: Dingys Boy (colt), JA Going Alltheway (filly)
Two-Year-Old Pacers: Hot Roddy (colt), Inittowinafortune (filly)
Three-Year-Old Trotters: Windshield (colt), Alleigh Girl (filly)
Three-Year-Old Pacers: Flying Instructor (colt), Heres My Ticket (filly)
Dover Downs Horse of the Meet: Im Won Wine Wiser
Dover Downs Trotter of the Meet: Chocolate N Roses
Dover Downs Claimer of the Meet: Hancock
Harrington Raceway Horse of the Year: As Bad As Thunder
Harrington Raceway Trotter of the Year: Marong A
Harrington Raceway Claimer of the Year: Dreamluck
Special Achievement awards were presented to: Daryl Bier, Higher And Higher, Somwhereovrarainbow, Dan Warrington and Janet Davis.
Following award presentations Clarence Smith’s popular group “On The Edge” provided musical entertainment.
(With files from Dover Downs)