Chicago Barn to Wire


Arlington Park News Release

Contact: Dave Zenner (847) 385-7535


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (June 15, 2001) -- One hundred different horses have been nominated to the six stakes races that comprise the June 23 Prairie State Festival including five horses that have been cross-nominated to multiple stakes races.

The six $75,000 races that make up the Prairie State Festival are:

  • The Purple Violet Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at one mile
  • The Springfield Stakes for 3-year-olds at one mile
  • The Isaac Murphy Handicap for fillies & mares, 3-year-olds & upward at six furlongs
  • The White Oak Handicap for 3-year-olds & upward at six furlongs
  • The Lincoln Heritage Handicap for fillies & mares 3-year-olds & upward at a mile and a sixteenth on the turf
  • The Cardinal Handicap for 3-year-olds & upward at a mile and a sixteenth on the turf

In addition to the aforementioned stakes races, the second annual Prairie State Festival showcases Illinois attractions and offers visitors the opportunity to discover unique statewide destinations. Several exciting performances will take place throughout the day, and various interactive booths will highlight activities and destinations where consumers can explore, discover, play and indulge in all that Illinois has to offer.

The most prominent horse among the 100 horses nominated to the Prairie State Festival races is Richard E. Trebat's Chicago Six, who headlines the 25 runners nominated to the Cardinal Handicap. The 6-year-old son of Wild Again had his five-race win streak snapped when he finished a well-beaten fifth in the Grade II $500,000 Hawthorne Gold Cup May 19. Prior to that, the Jere R. Smith Sr.-trained horse rattled off successive scores in the $60,000 Illinois Coronet Handicap and $40,000 Cisk Stakes at Hawthorne Race Course last November, the $100,000 Sportsman's Park Breeders' Cup Handicap and the $75,000 Milwaukee Avenue Handicap on back-to-back Saturdays in March, and the skein concluded with a victory in the Grade III $200,000 National Jockey Club Handicap at Sportsman's April 22.

Others nominated to the Cardinal include graded stakes winners Beboppin Baby, a career earner of more than $750,000, and defending champion Minor Wisdom, who captured the Grade III Hawthorne Derby during his sophomore season. Full nominations

Defending champion Ioya Two heads a list of 20 distaffers nominated to the Lincoln Heritage Handicap where she could face the stakes-placed Erin Murphy, former Illinois champion Faccia Bella and Illinois stakes winner Q. P. Cat. Full nominations

White Oak Handicap victor Davey's Cutlass and Isaac Murphy Handicap heroine Capitol View are both nominated to defend their respective titles. The former is one of 19 horses nominated to this year's renewal of the White Oak (Full nominations) while latter is one of 13 on the list for the Isaac Murphy. Full nominations

The sophomore set is featured in the Purple Violet Stakes and the Springfield Stakes with the former race restricted to fillies.

Stakes winners Bongo Bobbie, who captured the Showtime Deb at first asking at Hawthorne last November; Explosive Action, heroine of the Lawdy Miss Clawdy at Sportsman's this spring; Gold Digger Stakes victress Falasha; Mattina, who captured the Illinois Breeders' Debutante at Hawthorne in December; and Shemya, who took top honors in the Violet Stakes at Sportsman's March 31 are most notable among the 15 fillies nominated to the Purple Violet. Full nominations

Topping the list of 13 3-year-olds nominated to the Springfield are: Crack the Vault, who won the Sun Beau Stakes at Hawthorne last November; Lil Mephistopheles, Illinois champion 2-year-old last year who captured the Jim Edgar Futurity at Hawthorne in his final start of 2000; and two-time stakes victor Meadow Champ. Full nominations

Arlington Park, the Chicago area's premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill., will run its 102-day live racing meet from June 13 through October 28, 2001. Arlington Park, which merged with Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN) in September 2000, also operates five off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities -- "Trackside" at Arlington Park (Arlington Heights) and Quad City Downs (East Moline), and in Chicago, Rockford and Waukegan. For further information on Arlington Park, visit our website at

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