Chicago Barn to Wire


Contact: David Zenner
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ARLINGTON INTERNATIONAL, Ill. --- DeeBill Farms' Spectacular Cat lived up to his 7-10 odds and won the $75,000 Spectacular Bid Stakes by 1 lengths Sunday at Arlington International Racecourse. The Spectacular Bid, a six-furlong race for two-year-olds, is the first stakes race of the season for the juvenile set and serves as a prep for the $150,000 Arlington-Washington Futurity, which will be run September 23.

With Chris Emigh substituting for regular jockey Mark Guidry, expected to return Monday after suffering minor injuries in a spill here last week, Spectacular Cat was content to sit in fourth while racing wide in the early part of the race. He challenged Wheat Penny in the stretch and put that rival away in the final eighth of a mile for the victory in 1:11.96.

"They looked like they had a pretty nice pace and he was laying pretty close easily," Emigh said. "At the five-eighths pole I said: 'Man I got a lot of horse. He's barely running.' So I figured I'd ease up there nice and slow. The #5 horse (Wheat Penny) gave me more run than I thought he would. I tried to put him away and he started running so I had to ask my horse. He lugged in a little bit but he still finished pretty good."

Wheat Penny, who had the lead in the stretch, couldn't match strides with the winner late but was clearly second, finishing 2 lengths ahead of Eighth Avenue.

"He ran a pretty decent race," said Dave Kassen, trainer of the runner-up. "This horse had a lung infection, so we were a couple of (workouts) away from where we wanted to be for this race. The winner is also a pretty decent horse, so if we can stay around him, we can always dance another dance."

"He's gonna be definitely better when he goes long," said Shane Laviolette, Eighth Avenue's jockey. "He's bred for (distance), and that's what they want to do with him. He's still green and he's learning every time he goes out there."

Freeway Ticket, War Council, Molokai Connection and Count On Cart completed the order of finish.

Spectacular Cat paid $3.40, $2.40 and $2.10. Wheat Penny paid $5.20 and $2.10. Eighth Avenue paid $2.10.

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