Emerald Downs Wrap-Friday, July 20

Buckley Bay (No. 4) edges Blame It On Royce in the feature


AUBURN, Wash. (July 20, 2018) – Buckley Bay would not be denied Friday evening at Emerald Downs.

Winning his second straight off the claim, the 4-year-old gelding held off 3 to 5 favorite Blame It On Royce by a head in the $15,200 feature race for 3-year-olds and up.

With Gary Wales riding, Buckley Bay ran one mile in 1:36.70 and paid $33, $10.40 and $5.40. Dan Markle is the trainer for owners Glyn Kelly and Anne MacLennan of Vancouver B.C.

A 4-year-old Washington-bred gelding by Harbor the Gold, Buckley Bay is two for two since being claimed for $7,500 last month, and three for six overall with earnings of $23,820.

Blame It On Royce just missed a third straight win, dueling with the winner in a virtual match race through fractions of :23.95, :47.42, 1:11.44 and 1:23.90. The geldings entered the stretch side by side, with Buckley Bay finally gaining the upper hand in the final yards.

Blame It On Royce, ridden by Julien Couton, paid $2.60 and $2.20. The 6-year-old Blame gelding is 6-2-3 in 13 career starts at Emerald Downs.

Double A. Prospect, with Lorenzo Lopez riding, finished third and paid $3.40, and Pavelski, Cross Creek, Big Hat Charlie and Uzta Have Money completed the order of finish.

NOTES: Wales and Rocco Bowen rode two winners each on the seven-race card. . .Long shots fared well Friday with Charming Ruler ($52.40), Marymoor Park ($24.80) and Kenzie Blake ($19.80) also scoring at big prices. . .Trainer Manny Ortiz is on a 7 for 12 roll including a come-from-behind victory by Storm Stalker ($4.20) in Friday’s fifth race. Ortiz is 13 for 28 overall this season. . .Racing continues Saturday with first post 5 p.m. Sunday festivities include $50,000 Washington Oaks at 1 1/8 mile, and the annual Fiesta Premio Esmeralda honoring Hispanics in Washington racing.