Grand Finale Planned For End Of Ocean Downs Meet

BERLIN – Although only five nights remain in the 2007 summer meet at Ocean Downs, there are some big races and events on tap.

The fourth and final legs of the “Hal Belote Memorial” and “Alan Myer Memorial” Trotting Stakes series will be run Wednesday and Thursday, Aug. 22 and 23, respectively. The purse for each of the Late Closer Series will be $6,000 or more.

2006 Ocean Downs Horse of the Meet, Whitesville Tara won the two opening legs of the “Hal Belote Memorial” Series, but was placed in the Aug. 15 Chesapeake Bay Racing Series at the Ocean Oval with a $33,350 purse, the second richest race ever run at Ocean Downs.

The Gary White owned and trained mare entered that race with seven straight wins for the summer at the ocean. “Tara” is set to compete in the final leg of the “Hal Belote Memorial”.

Winners in the Aug. 2 opening leg of the “Alan Myer Memorial” Series were four year-old Ben Joe’s Way and Moon City Special, also a four year-old driven and trained by Sam Belote. The second-leg winner was Super Snappy, a three year-old filly driven by Kim Vincent and trained by John Rinnier.

Also on Aug. 22 and 23, the 2007 Maryland Standardbred Fund races will again be held at the Ocean Oval. The three-year-olds will be featured Wednesday, Aug. 22 and the two year-olds Thursday, Aug. 23. There are four Standardbred Fund races each night featuring top Maryland colts and fillies in both pace and trot races.

Still to be determined in the final week are the meet’s driver and trainer champions. Prior to racing Wednesday, Aug. 15, Frank Milby led Ray Robinson, Jr. with driving wins, 53-45. The leading trainer with 20 winners was Shawn Armour. Joseph Eisenhower, Sr. was second with 15 first-place finishers.

To celebrate the end of the live-racing meet, race fans will be treated to a three-night Carnival of Racing celebration from Wednesday, Aug. 22 through closing night, Aug. 25.

On Wednesday and Thursday, the Lone Ranger, Jr. and his great white horse Silver will make their first appearance at the Ocean Oval. They will lead the horses onto the track beginning at 7:35 pm and then be available for pictures, autographs and questions. These two nights, kids will be treated to free pony rides, face painting and the popular Horse Game For Kids.

Closing night is Saturday, Aug. 25, featuring a golf umbrella giveaway and a fireworks show after the final race. The first 1,500 fans purchasing an Ocean Downs race program will be given a coupon, which may be redeemed after the eighth race for a sturdy Ocean Downs golf umbrella.