Local Sports

Shelbyville begins stretch drive in "Quest For The Governor's Cup"

Harness racing continues Tuesday at the Shelby County Fairgrounds starting at 11:00 am.


After nine rounds of racing on the Indiana fair circuit, the "Quest for the Governor's Cup" now enters the stretch drive at the Shelby County Fair in Shelbyville, Ind. This week’s program represents one of four opportunities remaining for horses to bank valuable starts and points in hopes of qualifying for the Governor’s Cup Championships at the Indiana State Fair. Eight $3,500 divisions are carded each day.


Kruisin Kristen, a freshman that has tasted victory in each of her last four starts, headlines a trio of divisions offered for pacing fillies Monday. Owned and trained by Alvin Miller, the daughter of Tellitlikeitis-Portia Blue Chip has registered five wins on the fair circuit this year and currently leads the division in points. Jay Cross will guide Kruisin Kristen from post two in the day’s second race. Go Go Jacki Jo, a winner in each of her last two starts for trainer Leander Schwartz, leads a field of six in the first division. Check In Process, third in the standings, attempts to add her fifth win of the season in the third race.


In the freshman pacing colt division, Lil Joe Iv and M-M’s Tony are locked in a tight points battle, with only one marker separating the two. M-M’s Tony has reeled off four straight wins for Miller, the last a five-length triumph July 13 at Portland. The Tellitlikeitis gelding will line up in the second tier in Monday’s fourth race. Luck Be Withyou colt Lil Joe Iv will contest the next race, drawing post three in a field of six for trainer Terry Haimes. The two year old is a three-time fair victor, steered by Gerald Miller.


Sophomore trotting filly Double A Samantha looks to notch back-to-back wins for trainer John Merkel, and will attempt to do so on her home track. Last week in Portland the three year old won by six lengths with Brad Ferguson in the bike, stopping the clock in 2:03.1. She is currently fourth in the standings and needs three more starts to gain eligibility to the Governor’s Cup Championships. The Muscle Massive filly lines up fourth in race seven.


Babe’s Darla, top point earner in the sophomore pacing filly division, attempts to rebound from a disappointing fifth-place effort last week at Portland. The Straight Shooting-Bj’s Babe lass has collected four wins this season for trainer Carl Newland, and has drawn the rail in Tuesday’s fifth race. Al Perfection, currently second in points, also has the rail in race six, the second $3,500 division for filly pacers. The Scott Linville-trained three year old enters Tuesday with two wins in her last two outings, victorious by a head last week at Portland.


Tuesday’s finale features a pair of the top three-year-old pacing colts on the fair circuit. Points leader Virgins Beach Boy lines up fourth in the field of five for trainer Justin White. The Always A Virgin-Cantakerous gelding picked up his third fair win last week with Mike Peterson at the controls. Peterson will not guide Virgins Beach Boy this week, instead steering Always-A-Laser, a horse he trains and owns, from the outside post. Despite only making three fair starts to date, the Always A Virgin colt has registered two wins and a runner-up performance, good for fifth in points.


Doug Rideout built on his lead in the driver’s standings last week at Portland, piloting four winners and bringing his seasonal tally to 42. Jordan Ross is firmly entrenched in second place with 29 trips to the winner’s circle. Michael Detweiler ranks third with 13 victories, one ahead of veteran reinsman Cross. Rideout also enjoys a wide margin in the  trainer’s standings, sending out 47 winners to date. Mervin Schmucker continues to hold down second place with 19 training victories, and Leander Schwartz rounds out the top three with 12 scores. 


Listed below are the top eight point earners in each division, including ties, through eight rounds of the Quest. Points are tabulated by the Indiana Horse Racing Commission. Horses earn a point for each start made on the fair circuit, with race winners awarded 50 points. A second-place finish merits 25 points, a third-place effort yields 12 points, eight points are awarded for fourth place and five points for fifth place. The top eight point earners in each division that have also made the prerequisite seven fair starts will compete in the $25,000 Governor's Cup Championships to be held August 11 at the Indiana State Fair. All horses that have made seven or more starts are designated below with an asterisk.


Two-Year-Old Filly Pace

Kruisin Kristen 281; Here We Go BB 243; Check In Process 239; Go Go Jackie Jo* 199; Virgins Big Money* 192; Tell Me Lies* 186; Live Your Life 180; Swartz Bros Elen 176


Two-Year-Old Colt Pace

Lil Joe Iv* 244; M-M’s Tony 243; Isitlikeittell* 202; Master Splinter 179; Mercy Rock* 157; Vel Big Bruiser 155; Vel Dwayne 138; Little Fighter 124


Two-Year-Old Filly Trot

If Not For You* 265; Tucky Girl 223; Cash In The Bank* 219; Unforgettable* 211; Sure Do, Edge Of Rejoicing* 167; Swartz Bros Donna 155; Youknowyoudid, Sure Do 154


Two-Year-Old Colt Trot

Help Dust* 295; Mr Knowitall 255; Prince Henry 236; Starlit Swan Song 198; Reckless Reviver 179; A Majorsmackin 155; Closed Deal 138; Brookview Dewey 137


Three-Year-Old Filly Pace

Babe's Darla 223; Al Perfection* 198; Velstraightdreamer* 163; Vel Goodgollymolly* 148; Zig Zag Zoom 143; Mystical Image 138; Lady Angel 102; Running On Faith*, Swartz Bros Jane 83


Three-Year-Old Colt Pace

Virgins Beach Boy 218; Vel Larry* 185; Vel Bitter Chip* 183; Riggins Revenge 129; Always-A-Laser 128; Vel Wemiss U Dean 117; Luckychris 86; Family Four Ever 65


Three-Year-Old Filly Trot

Crescent Beauty* 383; Walk With Me* 307; Fashion's Way* 231; Double A Samantha 129; Swan’s Lady* 103; First N Line 101; ABC Tucky 65; Tabsladyone 62


Three-Year-Old Colt Trot

Lonestar Fashion* 295; Hand Dover Dan* 269; Molly’s Jail 164;  Summit City Sonny 163; Vel Jail Bondsman* 135; Swartz Bros Sam 130; Muscle Dan 77; V-Keys Striper 59


Racing fans are encouraged to follow along and participate this season using #Quest4GovCup on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Quest for the Governor’s Cup Locations and Dates

Complete - Round 1: Converse, Ind. - June 1 & 2

Complete - Round 2: Converse, Ind. - June 8 & 9

Complete - Round 3: Corydon, Ind. - June 16 & 17

Complete - Round 4: Converse, Ind. - June 21 & 22

Complete - Round 5: Frankfort, Ind. - June 27 & 28

Complete - Round 6: Frankfort, Ind. - July 4 & 5

Complete - Round 7: Kendallville, Ind. and Kentland, Ind. - July 9

Complete - Round 8: Portland, Ind. - July 13

Round 9: Shelbyville, Ind. - July 18 & 19

Round 10: Goshen, Ind. - July 23, 25 & 26

Round 11: Connersville, Ind. - August 1 & 2

Round 12: Portland, Ind. - August 6

Governor’s Cup Championships: Indianapolis, Ind. - August 11


Indiana fair races will be available via livestream this season through a partnership between the Indiana Standardbred Association and Indiana Standardbred Breed Development. Fans can watch fair racing by visiting the ISA website, indianaharness.com, on race days. Races will be archived on the website.