|Contact: Graham Ross
Thursday, September 28, 2000
ARLINGTON-WASHINGTON LASSIE TOPS SATURDAY'S FAN FESTIVITIES
Godolphin Racing, Inc.'s Zahwah, a Dubai-educated filly who won at Bay Meadows in the only start of her career, may vie for favoritism with Carl F. Pollard's Caressing and James W. Orr Jr.'s Dare She Goes when that troika heads a field of 10 in Saturday's Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Lassie.
The Lassie, a traditional one-mile test for two-year-old fillies, will observe its 66th renewal as the racing highlight of an 11-race program on the 103rd and final racing day of the Arlington 2000 season.
Designated as "Fan Appreciation Day" by Arlington, the Saturday program will begin with free admission for all guests at Chicago's premier oval and conclude with a free fireworks display as dusk falls shortly after the last race of the season.
Numerous other final-day-of-the-season festivities will be interspersed throughout the afternoon, depending on weather conditions.
Caressing, a daughter of Honour and Glory out of a Majestic Prince mare, is a winner of her last two starts including a seven-length score in River Downs' $100,000 Bassinet on Labor Day weekend. Greta Kuntzweiler will be astride Caressing.
Dare She Goes was most recently second by a nose in the $75,000 Top Flight, the final local prep for the Lassie contested at six furlongs September 9. The daughter of Dare and Go out of a Majestic Light mare had broken her maiden by three and a half-lengths at previous asking. Chris Emigh will handle the reins once again.
Zahwah, the Godolphin colorbearer trained by Eoin Harty, a former assistant to Bob Baffert, broke her maiden August 20 in Northern California by a length and a half and will be making only the second start of her career in the Lassie. Victor Espinoza is slated for the saddle.
Completing the field of juvenile distaffers in the Lassie are: Tom & Joan Roberts et al's Gold Huntress, Shane Laviolette aboard; Stronach Stables' Montana Cat, Corey Lanerie listed; Tom Stephens, George Reeves & Jerry Hendrickson's Pionjewel, Eddie Martin Jr. up; James Tafel LLC's Scoop, Ray Sibille in the irons; Brad Anderson's The Hess Express, Hector Rosario slated for the saddle; Brook Smith's Time Is Money, Ramsey Zimmerman aboard; and Richard, Bertram & Elaine Klein's Thunder Bertie, Jeremy Beasley in the tack.
Of these, the last named might be dangerous. The Thunder Gulch filly broke her maiden by two lengths at Turfway Park September 16 with a front-running tally and has improved each outing during three trips to the post.
In 1992, Allen E. Paulson's Eliza captured the Lassie on her way to divisional honors as Eclipse Award-winning Two-Year-Old Filly, but Arlington's female juvenile fixture has produced champions since the Forties, when Blue Delight and Bewitch both posed in the winner's circle following earlier renewals of the test.
Assuming the weather forecast for Saturday remains positive, Fan Appreciation Day added attractions for the whole family will include Happy Hopper contests with separate heats for children and adults, celebrity look-a-like contests, and musical chairs.
Arlington will also offer advance wagering Saturday on Sunday's internationally- renowned Group 1 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe from Longchamp on the outskirts of Paris.
After each race Saturday, there will be a highlight from Arlington's current season shown over the closed circuit television system. Awards to the meeting's leading jockey Mark Guidry, as well as the meeting's leading owner and trainer, both still undecided, will also be presented.
After the sixth race Saturday, Arlington executives will gather in the winner's circle for ceremonies they will conclude by throwing T-shirts to the crowd.
With 11 races on the closing day program, the Pick 6 will be offered on races four through nine, with a mandatory pay-off due to the end of the current season.
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