GLORIA’S ANGELO DEBUTS LOCALLY IN AUBURN,
FIRST TWO STAKES PRODUCE GIANT MUTUELS
Handicappers were pitched two nasty curve balls in the meet’s opening stakes events won by shippers: Kikisoblu romping at a healthy 8-to-1 in the Hastings Handicap, and Fleet Eagle capturing the Governor’s Handicap with stunning ease at a ridiculous 39-to-1.
They were amazing outcomes, to say the least, especially considering the winning margins of 4 ¼ lengths by Kikisoblu and 6 ¾ lengths by Fleet Eagle.
Sunday, 3-year-old colts and geldings take their turn with the $50,000 Auburn Handicap at 6 ½ furlongs, the first of a four-race series that culminates August 9 with the 1 1/8-mile Emerald Downs Derby.
Governor's Handicap Stunners!
Why Not Be Perfect and Fleet Eagle(pictured to the right) have certainly shook things up the past two runnings of the Governor's Handicap.
|Why Not Be Perfect
||Fleet Eagle |
||6.5F: 1:14.27 |
|$2 Win: $59.80
||$2 Win: $81.40 |
||Beyer: 99 |
|-- Emerald Downs Media |
Prime Engine—2014 Gottstein Futurity winner—heads the eight-horse field that features stakes-winning Daytona Beach and sharp allowance winner O B Harbor.
Prime Engine drew the No. 1 post-position while Daytona Beach drew No. 2.
“He’s been training really well, but he’ll probably have to use a little more speed to get out of the one-hole,” trainer Mike Puhich said of Prime Engine.
Prime Engine and Daytona Beach have yet to meet on the track. While the former was knocking off previously unbeaten Trackattacker in the Gottstein, Daytona Beach and trainer Doris Harwood opted for the Cahill Road Stakes at six furlongs.
Gloria’s Angelo has a great chance to chalk up another win for the shippers. Trained by Larry and Sharon Ross, the City Zip colt was beaten only 4 ½ lengths while finishing sixth in the April 12 San Pedro Stakes at six furlongs, and racked up a win and a second in two starts this winter at Golden Gate Fields. By City Zip, Gloria’s Angelo trained at Emerald Downs as a 2-year-old.
“He trained here in the fall before he went to California, so he’s familiar with the place,” Sharon Ross said. “He’s trained really well. Both of his last two works went really well. He’s doing super.
“We bought him to try and win some of the 3-year-old stakes here, we’re hoping to win the (Emerald) Derby with him. He just came off a nice little race down at Santa Anita, and with a little more luck and a little more ground, he would’ve been right there.”
Gloria’s Angelo is one of several recent acquisitions by Aithon Stables, nom de course for James Perkins and Mary Holt-Perkins of Issaquah. Members of last year’s Emerald Racing Club, the couple also own Belle Hill, a 3-year-old Sky Mesa filly that sold for $250,000, and Waltzing, a 2-year-old Candy Ride filly that coast $110,000.
“They’ve decided that quality horses are what they want,” Ross said. “They were in the Emerald Racing Club last year and they’ve decided that this is a nice little hobby for them.”
The Auburn Handicap is Race 9 at 6:09 p.m.
Average field size is 10.0 through the first two stakes races.
Chief of Staff, nominated to the Auburn, is 12-to-1 on the line in Saturday’s $250,000 Snow Chief Stakes for California-breds at Santa Anita.
Auburn Mayor Nancy Backus is Honorary Steward for the Auburn Handicap.
The field from the rail out for the 20th running of the Auburn Handicap: Prime Engine, Leslie Mawing, 121 lbs; Daytona Beach, Julien Couton, 118; Private Boss, Javier Matias, 117; Gloria’s Angelo, Joe Steiner, 117; O B Harbor, Jose Zunino, 118; Senna, Francisco Duran, 116; Fooled Again, Juan Gutierrez, 115; Moby, Gallyn Mitchell, 117.
MATCH-UP OF THE WEEK: CRAZY AL & CARSON'S START
Saturday's eighth and feature race tests seven 3-year-olds, who'll face off at a $25,000 tag. Here's a look at a head-to-head between Crazy Al and Carson's Start in the Media Match-Up of the Week!
Crazy Al dug in gamely and earned a career-high figure when headed by Fire the Trainer, who subsequently finished a good second vs. allowance runners. ’Al appears to thrive on dirt, draws inside the other speed, and jockey Francisco Duran is riding in excellent form.
Carson's Start showed some real ability as a 2-year-old last season, winning his career debut and just missing for third in the Cahill Road Stakes. In his first start of 2015, Carson's Start ran a sneaky good race, chasing a fast pace before enduring traffic problems in the stretch to finish third.
Also entered: Where's My Voucher, Cash N Dash, Corporal Agarn, Cadenza and Arrom Bear.
THE PRESS BOX PODCAST IS BACK!
The 45-minute program will showcase every stakes race this season including Sunday's $50,000 Auburn Handicap and an interview with assistant trainer Sharon Ross, who saddles California invader Gloria's Angelo in Sunday's stakes.
Hosted by Jacob Pollowitz (Professor Pollowitz) and Vince Bruun (Mr. Media), The Press Box Podcast starts approx. 30 minutes before post time before each stakes and includes horsemen interviews, handicapping, Robert Geller's live race call, the Winner's Circle interview and a comprehensive look at the race's history.
You can listen to the show live or recorded just by going to the track website at emeralddowns.com or at mixlr.com/emerald-downs.
EmD WORKOUT CENTRAL: O B HARBOR GALLOPS AHEAD OF AUBURN
O B Harbor, a recent allowance winner, made an appearance on the track Thursday, galloping in preparation for Sunday's $50,000 Auburn Handicap for 3-year-old colts and geldings at 6-1/2 furlongs.
Trained by Chris Stenslie for owner Jody Peetz (One Horse Will Do Corporation), O B Harbor could end up favored Sunday considering the Oregon-bred gelding has improved with each race including back-to-back handy victories. In his 2015 debut, O B Harbor drew off to a 7-length victory over Betrbegone, running the meet's fastest 5-1/2 furlongs in 1:02.39. Last Sunday, Betrbegone flattered O B Harbor's big performance with a 2-3/4-length allowance win of his own.
A win by O B Harbor Sunday would be the first Auburn score for Jose Zunino and the second for Stenslie and Peetz, who teamed up to win the 2011 Auburn with Showme Yourfriends.
Quarter Chute Cafe's Sally Steiner's motif of Fleet Eagle and his upset in the Governor's.
FAST TIMES & FIGURES: WEEK 5 2015 Fastest Times
Friday, May 17
Race 1: Enjewelled-45*
Race 2: Westley-56#
Race 3: Haleys Rainbow-63
Race 4: Ain't Tellin'-70*
Race 5: Cha Cha Latte-66
Race 6: Liberty Lake-65
Race 7: Whiskey Prince-73*
Saturday, May 16
Race 1: Billy Mac-59*
Race 2: She's Purdee-44
Race 3: Thetrailerguy-63*
Race 4 :Zippinaroundtown-43
Race 5: Power Fleet-78
Race 6: Credit Line-61
Race 7: Surfliner-71
Race 8: Betrbegone-71*
Race 9: Budy's Gold-48*
Sunday, May 17
Race 1: Beduin (QH)
Race 2: Thundering Away-69*
Race 3: Financial Officer-55
Race 4: It's Little Richie-66#
Race 5: Dare Me Devil-78
Race 6: Diamonds Dena-60
Race 7: Rachae Leigh-65
Race 8: Mr. Top Kat-86
Race 9: Fleet Eagle-99*
Race 10: He’s Dreamy-56*
5 Furlongs :56.70 Power Fleet, May 16
5-½ Furlongs 1:02.39 O B Harbor, April 18
6 Furlongs 1:08.69 Kikisoblu, May 10
6-½ Furlongs 1:14.27 Fleet Eagle, May 17
1 Mile 1:37.78 It’s Our Pleasure, April 19
2-MINUTE CLIP: DINO APOSTOLOU
Trainer Dino Apostolou tells all!
FINISH LINES: Weekly Honors #5-Trainer- Charles Essex ; Jockey- Javier Matias ; Owner- Paymaster Racing ; Groom- Mauro Avila Vera (Robbie Baze) ; WTBOA Washington-bred- It’s Little Richie (C.E. Rich & Ann Richardson) ; Exercise Rider- Guillermo Miuro (freelance). . .Sunday’s 11-race card begins with two Quarter Horse races featuring a $5,000 allowance test for 3-year-olds and up at 350 yards. Alota Action , third in last years $60,000 Bank of America Championship Challenge, heads a field of 10. . . Mr. Bowling ($8.20) scored a half-length victory over 5-to-2 favorite Title Contender in Monday’s $50,000 John Longden 6000 at Hastings Racecourse. Mr. Bowling, sixth in the 2014 Longacres Mile, ran in the same January 29 Golden Gate allowance race as Governor’s Handicap winner Fleet Eagle . . . Twistgrips and Shooting Jacket , third and fifth in last year’s Longacres Mile, run in a $28,000 optional claiming race this Sunday at Hastings. . .Assistant trainer Sharon Ross says Stryker Phd remains on course for the $50,000 Budweiser Handicap on June 14. “He was bucking like crazy out there today. He’s having fun training and getting fit. He’ll work again on Saturday and we’ll continue to get him ready for the stakes next month.”. . .Entries for Memorial Day will be taken Friday morning. . .Owners Bruce and Cass Maller (Highlander Racing Stable) are back in action Sunday when Citizen Kitty makes her EmD debut for trainer Jeff Metz in a $20,000 maiden special weight for 3-year-old fillies. The Mallers campaigned 2013 WTBOA Horse of the Year E Z Kitty . . . Mike Chambers has his first two starters of the meet this week: Royal Import in Saturday’s fifth race and Vertical Lift in Sunday’s seventh. For Chambers, they’re his first Emerald Downs starters since 2011. . . Raised a Secret , a 5-year-old gelding that broke his maiden here in 2012, scored a $17 upset Thursday in a $60,000 optional claimer at Santa Anita. Dr. Rodney Orr , owner of Raised a Secret, also won with Enjewelled last week at Emerald Downs. . . I Think So , a triple stakes winner at Hastings Racecourse, and Camille , a stakes winner at Turf Paradise, make their Emerald Downs debuts Sunday in the $21,500 sub-feature for older fillies and mares. Mylast Sweet Pea and Guinevere’s Finale , both off the board in the May 10 Hastings Handicap, also are entered in the 5 ½-furlong dash. . . Leslie Mawing once again is riding Wednesday nights at Les Bois Park in his hometown of Boise. . . Forin Sea , a Brother Derek gelding that began his career here in 2012, has developed into a sprinting terror in New Mexico, winning 10-of-13 starts overall including 4-for-4 this year. . . Scheduling note: Emerald Downs Live on CSN will air 2-6 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, including the $50,000 Seattle Handicap for 3-year-old fillies. The show airs on its normal Saturday schedule this week.