BARKLEY VS. MACH ONE RULES IN MT. RAINIER
A solid field of 10 older handicap runners square off Sunday in the $50,000 Mt. Rainier Stakes at 1 1/16 miles, but most eyes will focus on 4-year-olds Barkley and Mach One Rules, whose rivalry is developing into one of the best in track history.
The Mt. Rainier is the traditional final prep for the Longacres Mile, and also the final leg of Sunday’s all-stakes $0.50 Pick 4 composed of the $50,000 Emerald Express (Race 5), $50,000 Angie C Stakes (Race 6), $50,000 Boeing Stakes (Race 7) and $50,000 Mt. Rainier Stakes (Race 8).
In last month’s Budweiser Stakes at 6 1/2 furlongs,Mach One Rules broke through with a three-quarter-length victory over Prime Engine, as Barkley finished a troubled fourth. It broke a streak in which Barkley had finished in front of Mach One Rules six straight times, including four heart-stopping stakes wins over the last two seasons.
Mach One Rules had barely crossed the wire, however, before Barkley’s trainer, Howard Belvoir, claimed foul allegeing interference on Mach One Rules and jockey Isaias Enriquez. The stewards took a good long look, with Mach One Rules’ number blinking several minutes on the totebaord, but made no change.
“Barkley had a bad trip,” Belvoir said. “When you’re the top dog, they’re always looking for you.”
Indeed Enriquez looked over his shoulder for Barkley a couple of times, but the stewards ruled Mach One Rules was clear when drifting out in the stretch.
Belvoir said he has altered Barkley’s work pattern and hinted a change of tactics good be in Sunday’s gameplan.
“(Barkley’s) doing great,” Belvoir said. “He’s very sharp. He has no excuse, if he get the trip.”
The field for the 22nd running of the Mt. Rainier Stakes: 1-Please Be Me, Jose Zunino, 118 lbs; 2-Prime Engine, Julien Couton, 120; 3-Mach One Rules, Isaias Enriquez, 124; 4-Togrammashousewego, Rocco Bowen, Rocco Bowen 118; 5-Barkley, Javier Matias, 124; 6-Dedicated to You, Eswan Flores, 118; 7-Bistraya, Amadeo Perez, 122; 8-Papa Frank, Eliska Kubinova, 118; 9-Moon King, Kevin Krigger, 118; 10-Stryker Phd, Kevin Orozco, 120.
- The Mt. Rainier Stakes goes as Race 8 at 5:39 p.m.
- The betting favorite has won 11 of the last 12 runnings of the Mt. Rainier; Noosa Beach in 2010 is the last non-favorite to win.
- Six horses won the Mt. Rainier gate-to-wire including O B Harbor in 2016.
- Stryker Phd is appearing in his fifth straight Mt. Rainier Stakes. He finished 1st in 2014 & 2015, 2nd in 2013 and 4th in 2016.
- Kevin Krigger makes his first Emerald Downs appearance since 2010 to ride Moon King for Greg Tracy in the Mt. Rainier Stakes, and Pyscho Sister for trainer Tim McCanna in the Boeing Stakes . Krigger is No. 14 all-time with 342 wins at Emerald Downs including the 2005 riding title with 126 wins. He is 2-for-20 this year while riding at Parx and Pleasanton.
- Bistraya invades from Hastings Recourse for trainer Robert Gilker and jockey Amadeo Perez, the same duo that combined with Herbie D to sweep the 2013 Mt. Rainier Stakes and Longacres Mile.
- Dedicated to You, a non-threatening eighth while making his 2017 debut in the Budweiser Stakes, ran the race of his career while finishing runner-up to O B Harbor in the 2016 Mt. Rainier, rallying for second at 24-1 and earning a 91 Beyer.
PROFOUND MOMENT TOPS BOEING STAKES
Profound Moment has won four of seven career starts including an easy victory in last mont’s Washington State Legislators Stakes.
One of the main questions handicappers must answer in Sunday’s $50,000 Boeing Stakes at one mile is whether Profound Moment can handle some added distance. A Kentucky-bred speedster by Haynesfield, Profound Moment fizzled in two previous attempts at two turns, finishing fifth in last year’s Kent Stakes and fifth in a $53,000 allowance at Churchill Downs in May.
Citizen Kitty also stretches out after a series of excellent sprints for trainer Jeff Metz, who also saddles underrated B C Z Middleton. Princess Katie, who rallied from the clouds to win the 2016 Irish Day Stakes, returns to Emerald Downs for trainer Robert Gilker. A 4-year-old B.C.-bred by Finality, Princess Katie stretches out after finishing seventh in her 2017 debut last month at Hastings Racecourse.
The field for the 22nd running of the Boeing Stakes: 1-Princess Katie, Amadeo Perez, 119 lbs; 2-Citizen Kitty, Julien Couton, 123; 3-My Heart Goes On, Eswan Flores, 119; 4-Profound Moment, Javier Matias, 123; 5-Pyscho Sister, Kevin Krigger, 117; 6-Princess Kennedy, Rocco Bowen, 119; 7-B C Z Middleton, Jose Zunino, 119; 8-Protective Shield, Juan Gutierrez, 119; 9-McDove, Kevin Orozco, 117.
- The Boeing Stakes goes as Race 7 at 5:09 p.m.
- Three of the last five Boeing winners subsequently won the Emerald Distaff: Lady Rosberg (2015), Stopshoppingdebbie (2014) and Class Included (2012).
- The Emerald Racing Club has its first ever stakes starter as McDove breaks from post-position No. 9 for trainers Larry and Sharon Ross and jockey Kevin Orozco.
SIPPIN FIRE AMONG SEVEN IN EMERALD EXPRESS
Washington-breds Sippin Fire and Brown Tiger, who battled head-and-head to the wire in their July 2 debuts, head a field of seven entered in Sunday’s $50,000 Emerald Express for 2-year-old colts and geldings at 5 1/2 furlongs.
Sippin Fire prevailed by a head in :57.36 for five furlongs and both runners were assigned 56 Beyers, which are easily tops among the horses entered Sunday.
By Harbor the Gold-Bahati, Sippin Fire sold for $20,000 at the 2016 WTBOA Summer Yearling Sale, a bargain price considering the chestnut gelding is a full to state champion 2-year-olds Couldabenthewhisky and Del Rio Harbor. In fact, Del Rio Harbor posted a $32.80 upset in the 2013 Emerald Express and both Couldabenthewhisky and Del Rio Harbor both won the Gottstein Futurity.
Trained by Steve Bullock, Sippin Fire is owned by How We Roll 4, a six-person syndicate that includes Emerald Downs’ own Joe Withee.
“Steve’s been high on the horse ever since he arrived at the track last winter, and his first race was pretty darn good,” Withee said. “He had a good work on Monday, we’re expecting a good effort.”
The field for the 22nd running of the Emerald Express: 1-Elliott Bay, Jennifer Whitaker, 118 lbs; 2-Rosie’s Reward (s), Rocco Bowen 120; 3-Brown Tiger, Julien Couton, 118; 4-He’s Not Grey, Juan Gutierrez, 118; 5-Sippin Fire, Javier Matias, 120; 6-Vicente’s Shadow, Eswan Flores, 120; 7-Bullet Drill, Kevin Orozco, 118. (s) supplemental entry
- The Emerald Express goes as Race 5 at 4:07 p.m.
- Trainer Howard Belvoir has won the Emerald Express a record six times including the last two runnings with Barkley (2015) and So Lucky (2016). He sends out Elliott Bay in this year’s renewal.
CANADIAN INVADER TOPS ANGIE C STAKES
Vancouver shipper My Aunto Mo heads a field of nine 2-year-old fillies in Sunday’s $50,000 Angie C Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs.
An Illinois-bred by Uncle Mo, My Aunto Mo was very sharp in her debut last month at Hastings Racecourse, leading gate-to-wire in :40.04 for 3 1/2 furlongs and earning a 61 Beyer. Owned by North American Thoroughbred Racing Company, My Aunt Mo will be saddled by Mike Puhich at Emerald Downs.
Philly Baby, a five-length winner for trainer Chris Stenslie, last month, and Bella Mia, who improved smartly in her second start while rolling to a 5 1/4-length victory for trainer Blaine Wright, appear the top local threats.
The field for the 22nd running of the Angie C Stakes: 1-Philly Baby, Jose Zunino, 119 lbs; 2-Goldie’s Darlins, Isaias Enriquez, 117; 3-My Aunt Mo, Amadeo Perez, 119; 4-Sea N Redd, Erick Lopez, 119; 5-Bella Mia, Julien Couton, 119; 6-Manny’s Way, Kevin Orozco, 119; 7-C I M Sweet, Rocco Bowen, 117; 8-Faith Flys Again, Javier Matias, 117; 9-Come Find Me, Juan Gutierrez, 117.
- The Angie C goes as Race 6 at 4:38 p.m.
- Trainer David Martinez, who saddles Faith Flys Again and Come Find Me, is bidding for a third straight win in the Angie C. He won with My Heart Goes On in 2015 and Karula in 2016, tha latter winning by 11 lengths at odds of 31-1.
BEYERS & FAST TIMES
Friday, July 7
Race 1: Just Gone-54
Race 2: Deputy’s Command-74
Race 3: Party Pooper-75
Race 4: Captain Shaddock-60*
Race 5: Kenai King-70
Race 6: Mike Man’s Gold-82
Race 7: Signorina Ermenia-60*
Saturday, July 8
Race 1: Valid Keiki-68
Race 2: Lucky Chopra-53*
Race 3: Jerre to Carrie-68
Race 4: Racy Rascal-60
Race 5: Lehigh-52*
Race 6: Web of Demons-54*
Race 7: Gazing-72*
Race 8: Call Me Cinderella-41
Sunday, July 9
Race 1: One Macho Gambler-56
Race 2: Crystal Mtn Stormy-38+#
Race 3: R Loren-50*
Race 4: Ravizzone-53*
Race 5: Credit Line-84*
Race 6: Trelawny-65
Race 7: Calculated Chaos-63
Race 8: Monydontspenitself-82*
Race 9: Rockport Birdie-57
# First-time starter
4 ½ Furlongs :51.45 Rosie’s Reward (2yog), June 24
5 Furlongs :56.38 All for Me (4yog), April 9
5 ½ Furlongs 1:01.10 Prime Engine (5yog), April 22
6 Furlongs 1:07.83 Emmett Park (6yog), July 2
6 ½ Furlongs 1:13.94 Mach One Rules (4yog), June 18
1 Mile 1:34.65 Mike Man’s Gold (7yog), July 7
1 1/16 Mile 1:44.12 Just Gone (7yog), July 7
300 Yards :15.787 Augie Meyer (5yog), June 10
350 Yards :17.968 Tickle Ur Fancy (4yof), June 4
4-Jerre to Carrie (4yof)
4-Rockport Birdie (6yom)
Last Week: 11-24 (45.8%)
Season: 125-334 (37.4%)
Largest $2 Win: $103.80 Betting On Dr Bow (June 18)
QH Favorites: 1-5
WEEKLY HONORS #14 (July 7-9): Valpak Jockey-Juan Gutierrez; Las Margaritas Trainer-Kay Cooper; Owner-William Sandeman; Quarter Chute Café Groom-Reynaldo Faustino Rivera (Chris Stenslie); WTBOA Washington-bred-Gazing (Dean Essex & Judy Anne Essex breeders); Exercise Rider of the Week-Brad Balcom (Terry Gillihan).
FINISH LINES: Emerald Downs’ track announcer Matt Dinerman celebrated his 25th birthday Thursday. . .The feature race victory last Friday by Mike Man’s Gold came on the fifth anniversary of his career debut July 7, 2012, when he rallied for a $42.80 victory over Finallygotabentley in an $18,000 maiden special weight. . .The 24 winning horses last week at Emerald Downs have a combined 134 career wins, led by Trelawny, 18; Mike Man’s Gold, 15; Just Gone, 12; Call Me Cinderella, 11; Deputy’s Command, 10; Calculated Chaos, 9; Credit Line, 9, and Rockport Birdie, 8. . . Washington-bred Boundary Bay, full brother to 2016 Emerald Downs Horse of the Meeting O B Harbor, runs in the $50,000 Spaghetti Mouse for 2-year-old Sunday at Hastings Racecourse. By Harbor the Gold-Flying Memo, Boundary Bay sold for $32,000 at the 2016 WTBOA Summer Yearling Sale and debuted with a victory May 28 at Hastings. . .Also Sunday at Hastings, 2016 Emerald Downs Derby winner Opportunistic looks to rebound in a $30,000 allowance race for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/16 miles. A 4-year-old Sky Mesa gelding, Opportunistic has finished off the board in three starts this year for trainer and co-owner Glen Todd. Todd, incidentally, is a fine 7-for-33 this season since taking over for the retired Troy Taylor. . .Leslie Mawing has climbed up to sixth place at Canterbury with 18 wins in 145 mounts. . .Looks like another perfect weather weekend at Emerald Downs: Friday-81 & sunny; Saturday-77 & sunny; Sunday-75 & mostly sunny. . .Reminder that Saturday’s first post is 6:30 p.m. . .Dean Mazzuca, whose yellow and green Two Putts For the Win silks have been a fixture in the winner’s circle this season at Emerald Downs, is in Prineville, Ore. this week to call the annual four-day Crooker River Roundup race meeting. . .The annual Equine Art Show is on track level throughout the weekend at Emerald Downs. . .The annual Food Truck Festival is Saturday and Sunday at Emerald Downs, featuring 16 food trucks in the park area north of the Paddock.