Emerald Downs Wrap-Sunday, July 31

Smoken Shadow and Eddie Martinez dominate Sunday’s feature race


AUBURN, Wash. (July 31, 2022) – Smoken Shadow was never headed and rolled to a 3 ¼-length victory in Sunday’s $25,000 Muckleshoot Casino Purse for 3-year-olds and up at Emerald Downs.

With Eddie Martinez riding, Smoken Shadow zipped 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.23 and paid $12.20 as the second longest price in a field of six. Debbie Peery is the trainer for owners Ken and Vicky Jo Elison of Boise, Idaho.

The lone 3-year-old in the field, Smoken Shadow set fractions of :22.55 and :44.88, shook off Ididntseethatcomin into the stretch, and powered home for a convincing victory.

A California-bred son of Shaman Ghost, Smoken Shadow is 2-1-0 in four starts at the meet and 2-1-1 in seven starts overall with $35,790 in purse earnings. Sunday’s victory was worth $13,750.

Naval Escort, the 9 to 5 favorite ridden by Alex Cruz, rallied to finish second while Harbor Outlaw, with Jake Samuels aboard, finished third. Ididntseethatcomin, March On Linch, and Forty Smooches rounded out the order of finish.


Nominations close a week from today for the 87th running of the $150,000 Longacres Mile and $75,000 Emerald Distaff, both to be run Sunday, August 14.

The stakes quadruple-header also features the $75,000 Muckleshoot Derby and $75,000 Washington Oaks, with nominations for the latter two events closing Saturday, August 6.

Entries for the Mile, Distaff, Derby, and Oaks will be drawn 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, August 10. Incidentally, the Longacres Mile is no longer a handicap, with older horses carrying 124 lbs. and 3-year-olds weighted at 121 lbs. (Non-winners of $50,000 at one mile or over in 2022 allowed 2 lbs.; Non-winners of $30,000 since December 1, 2021, allowed 4 lbs.; Non-winners of $20,000 in 2021-2022 allowed 6 lbs.).

Background prevailing in the 2021 Longacres Mile


Giddyup Stables’ Background is set to defend his title in the $150,000 Longacres Mile, according to trainer Mike Puhich.

Background has enjoyed a successful 2022 campaign, winning $100,000 allowance races at Oaklawn Park and Churchill Downs and is prolific at the one-mile distance, compiling with a 4-1-1 record in six starts at eight panels including last year’s head victory over Windribbon in the Longacres Mile. Background’s overall mark is 6-3-4 in 20 starts with earnings of $430,488. Rocco Bowen is expected to ride Background in his title defense.

A 5-year-old Khozan gelding, Background attempts to become only the fifth two-time winner of the Northwest’s most prestigious race, a select group of runners including Amble In (1946, 1948), Trooper Seven (1980-81), Simply Majestic (1988-89), and Stryker Phd (2014-15).

Background is scheduled to work Tuesday at Pegasus Training Center in Redmond.

Majestic Eagle, from the barn of Hall of Fame trainer Neil Drysdale, is another horse eyeing the Mile, according to co-owner John Lindley. A 7-year-old graded winner on turf by Medaglia d’Oro, Majestic Eagle breezed five furlongs on dirt in a bullet 1:00 Tuesday at Del Mar.

NOTES: Total mutuel handle was $1,436,042 on a seven-race card. . .Country music artist Trace Adkins performed Sunday’s national anthem. . .2-year-old colt Gold Rush Junior ($6.60) won Sunday’s second race—the Gold Rush Dancer Purse—which is named after his sire and 2017 Longacres Mile winner. By Gold Rush DancerAmong the Stars, Gold Rush Junior is owned and bred by John Parker and trained by Candi Cryderman. . .In the 2-year-old filly maiden special weight, trainer David Martinez saddled the top two finishers—Ila Veiw Too ($52.80) and Chippewa Prince. . .A Washington-bred by Lord Lochinvar, Ila Veiw Too was ridden by Alex Anaya for owners Swag Stables and Kevin Erickson. At 25.40 to 1, Ila VeiwToo is the second largest $2 win mutuel of the meet. . . Trainer Jose Puentes registered his first career win at Emerald Downs with Clubhouse Wave ($7.40) in the Sunday opener. . .And in the seventh race finale, trainer Joe Ortega notched his first career victory with gate to wire winner Iowa Kid ($5.40). . .With the win on Iowa Kid, Alex Cruz finished the week with a 58-48 lead over Kevin Radke in the jockeys’ standings. . .Radke was the lone rider with two wins Sunday. . .Live racing resumes Friday with first post 7 p.m.