Emerald Downs Wrap-Saturday, May 28

Top Executive (No. 4) prevails under Alex Cruz


AUBURN, Wash. (May 28, 2022) – Top Executive nailed Papa’s Golden Boy in the final stride for a head victory in Saturday’s $28,500 Muckleshoot Casino Purse for 3-year-olds and up at Emerald Downs.

With two-time defending Emerald Downs riding champion Alex Cruz aboard, Top Executive ran 5 ½ furlongs in 1:01.60 and paid $8.60 as third choice in a field of six. Blaine Wright is the winning trainer for owners John and Janene Maryanski and Riverbend Stable.

Saturday’s race featured the second, third, and fourth place finishers in last year’s Longacres Mile—Windribbon, Five Star General, and Papa’s Golden Boy—along with the last two Emerald Downs’ Horses of the Meeting—Top Executive and Dutton.

Top Executive, the 2021 Horse of the Meeting after a three-race sweep of the 3-year-old colts and geldings division, resumed his winning ways with a scintillating stretch run, reeling in a loose on the lead Papa’s Golden Boy for the victory.

“He had a good start, but we lost a little ground on the turn,” Cruz said. “But I always knew I had a lot of horse. I kept him busy, and he responded.”

The 2 to 1 second choice ridden by Kevin Radke, Papa’s Golden Boy once again exhibited his unmatchable speed, carving blistering fractions of :21.41, :43.44, and :55.16, and was still two lengths clear past mid-stretch. Top Executive was relentless, however, surging late under Cruz for the victory.

A 4-year-old Kentucky-bred by Street Boss, Top Executive is five for seven at Emerald Downs, including four stakes victories. His overall mark is 6-0-0 from 10 starts with $141,3323 in earnings, including $15,675 for Saturday’s triumph.

Windribbon, the even-money favorite, finished third in his 2022 debut, 2 ½-lengths back of Papa’s Golden Boy, while Five Star General, Slew’s Tiz Whiz, and Dutton completed the order of finish.

The $50,000 Budweiser Stakes at six furlongs is the first stakes for older horses on June 26, followed by the $50,000 Governor’s Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs on July 24, and the 87the running of the $150,000 Longacres Mile on Aug. 14.

Total mutuel handle was $1,062,568 on a nine-race card.

NOTES: Cruz, Javier Matias, and Kevin Radke rode two winners each Saturday. . .Radke tops the standings with 11 wins through four days of racing. . .Candi Cryderman leads trainers with four wins, including a gate to wire score by Brony Boy ($6) for owner John Parker in the ninth race. . .Parker leads all owners with four wins. . .Fourth race maiden winner Eyes for Gold ($4.20) was claimed for a meet-high $25,000 by trainer Jeff Metz and Saratoga West. . .9-year-old Iron Rob ($4.60) rallied for his 15th career victory in race three, running six furlongs in 1:09.49. The Twirling Candy gelding won the 2016 San Pedro Stakes before finishing eighth in the 2016 Santa Anita Derby. . .Live racing continues Sunday at 2:15 p.m.