Three-year-olds were on center stage Friday, Nov. 17 at Harrah’s Hoosier Park in the Star Destroyer. One Indiana standout upped his game against open company and rallied home for the win in the $65,000 Star Destroyer for sophomore pacing colts and geldings with Coach Stefanos taking home the title.
Coach Stefanos and driver Trace Tetrick were not interested in the early mix of figuring out who would lead the way, getting away in fifth as Liteningonthebeach and Jordan Ross was the first leader with Burnout and LeWayne Miller taking over after the quarter in :26.0. From there, Burnout continued to lead the way through the half in :54.1 before Coach Stefanos was flushed to the outside first over around the final turn. At the head of the lane, Coach Stefanos took over and moved ahead of the field by more than three lengths. He paced home in :26.0 to score the win in 1:49.0. Buzzsaw Russ and John DeLong finished two and one-quarter lengths back in second to make it an Indiana exacta. Dynamite Dylan and Andy Miller finished third.
Coach Stefanos was selected as the race favorite, paying $2.20. The three-year-old son of Tellitlikeitis added another stakes win to his record this season for owners Ken Duffy, D & M Trading II, and John Stefanos. Victory Hill Farm bred the gelding, who is trained by Erv Miller.
Coach Stefanos is now seven for 15 and has finished first or second in 13 of those starts. He has now earned more than a half million this season with his overall earnings boosted to nearly three-quarters of a million. His career best time of 1:48.4 was taken earlier this year at Harrah’s Hoosier Park.
One race later, another sub 1:50 mile was turned in by Indiana’s Little Rocket Man and John DeLong. The son of Rockin Image was moved to the lead after the quarter in :25.4 and led all the way to the wire for the win in 1:49.4, a final quarter in :26.4. Tellmeaboutit and LeWayne Miller closed for second over Spring Inhis Step A and Kyle Wilfong.
Little Rocket Man paid $3.60 for the win. Trained by Ken Rucker, the seven-year-old is owned by Russ Beeman and Jack Freeman. The win was his 15th of the year as he builds on his $1 million dollar bankroll. Overall, he now has 52 career wins in 96 career starts.