Emerald Downs Wrap-Sunday, May 26

Naval Escort rallies to victory under Javier Matias


AUBURN, Wash. (May 26, 2024) – Naval Escort swept past the leaders late and scored a 1 ½-length victory in Sunday’s $24,500 Muckleshoot Casino Purse for 3-year-olds and up at Emerald Downs.

Perfectly ridden by Javier Matias, Naval Escort ran six furlongs in 1:09.24 and paid $11.44 as the fourth betting choice in a field of six older Washington-breds. David Martinez saddled the winner for owners breeders Jack and Theresa Hodge (Oak Crest Farm) of Enumclaw, Wash.

Last on the backstretch as Peter Flies and Mister Midas dueled through taxing fractions of :21.38 and :43.86, Naval Escort saved ground around the turn and rallied strongly inside to catch Peter Flies and Chuckanut Bay and win going away.

A 6-year-old by Coast Guard, Naval Escort won for the third time in 24 starts and earned $13,985 to boost his career total to $95,898.

Peter Flies, the 8 to 5 favorite ridden by Karlo Lopez, held second place while Chuckanut Bay, ridden by Alex Cruz, was a neck back in third. Its Kraken Time, Mister Midas and Ohwhatarush rounded out the order of finish.

NOTES: Sunday’s handle totaled $912,498 on an eight-race card. . .Justin Evans posted his third double in four days and leads the trainers’ standings with eight wins. . .For the second straight day eight different jockeys were victorious. . .Alex Cruz took the nightcap on Hey Barmaid ($2.56) and tops the standings with nine wins, two up on Karlo Lopez. . .John Parker scored his first win of the meet and 190th at Emerald Downs as 3-year-old filly Neissa ($9.14) romped under Leslie Mawing for trainer Candi Cryderman in Sunday’s fourth. Only Ron Crockett with 267 has more owner wins than Parker at Emerald Downs. . .Nice work by Joe Withee selecting seven winners out of eight races on Handicappers Corner. . .In the $0.50 Pick Six, which featured a $13,291 carryover, tickets with six wins paid $650.49. . .Clovisconnection scored in a $24,000 allowance at Golden Gate, running six furlongs in 1:09.29 for trainer Blaine Wright. The California-bred son of Vronsky took the 2023 Auburn Stakes and Irish Day Stakes at Emerald Downs. . .Racing resumes Friday with first post 7 p.m.