|Hawthorne Racecourse Stakes Recap
Contact: Jim Miller (708) 780-3700
PHIL GEORGEFF FESTIVAL OF RACING
As always, the Phil Georgeff Illinois Festival of Racing provided plenty of excitement and a good mixture of winning favorites and longshots.
Lightning Jet Stakes
Magic Doe started things off with a game wire-to-wire victory in the Lightning Jet Stakes. Though he wasn't really expected to get the lead so quickly, this fan favorite did indeed take the initiative from the gate, obviously helped by the fact that Star Chief, the second choice in the wagering and generally a bullet from the gate, was unprepared for the start.
Though he was under pressure throughout jockey Randy Meier exuded confidence. "My horse broke so fast. They were kind of high on that California horse (Star Chief) but he is only a three-year old. He's never met nobody like Magic Doe. He's got class. Star Chief kind of stumbled out of there. I used that to my advantage. And this little horse is just so good right now, he's doing everything I ask him to. He's a Chicago horse."
Shane Laviolette, jockey, 3rd place finisher Tic N Tin, said, "My horse ran a great race. He battled until the end and I really couldn't ask for anything more. I was looking for either Magic Doe or the 2 horse (Star Chief) to be out there, and when the 2 broke bad, I thought my shots got better. I have no excuse and am very happy with how we ran."
Chris Emigh, jockey, 2nd place, Manitowish: "I thought we were going to go by, but that Magic Doe just never gives up. This is the second or third time I've been on a horse that I thought was going to beat Magic Doe, and he just keeps going. I'm happy with how we ran and have no complaints at all."
Payoffs for the Lightning Jet: Magic Doe $4.40, $2.80, $2.20; Manitowish $6.80, $4.20; Tic N Tin $2.60; $2 Exacta 1-6 $20.00; $2 Trifecta 1-6-3 $94.00.
Meier, in the midst of a great day, also took the second race of the "Festival," the Powerless Stakes, in a similarly-run race. Capitol View, a 9-1 outsider, was also able to control the pace for most of the race.
"I was a bit surprised at how easily we got the lead," Meier said. "I thought there would be a bit more pace in the race. But she made the lead easily and relaxed real well. The slow first quarter was surprising to me because I worked her out of the gate one morning at Arlington before we left there and she just blistered. I didn't do anything, she just hummed."
It was certainly a profitable day for Meier.
Shane Laviolette, jockey, 2nd place Lil Bobbie Too: "She broke well and was running fine down the backside. I just expected there to be more speed up front, but when the 2 (Sniffy) didn't break well, then Randy's horse (winner, Come September) got things a little bit easier. My filly ran a big race though."
Jesse Campbell jockey, 3rd place Darling L: "We should have never been those odds. If you look at her form all year she's been really consistent and she's been facing open company. I loved her. I thought she was my best shot. We did have the perfect trip. We're really happy. She came into the race great and ran great."
Powerless payoffs: Capitol View $21.20, $12.00, $11.00; Lil Bobbie Too $8.40, $7.00; Darling L $13.00; $2 Exacta 9-3 $118.60; $2 Trifecta 9-3-1 $$2,393.20.
One of the most surprising things about the Illinois Coronet was that multiple stakes winner Chicago Six didn't go off as the favorite. Though he had earned over $331,000 this year, 3-year-old San Pedro was slightly favored.
Chicago Six, however, won this battle. His six-length victory left little in doubt. Jockey Alfredo Juarez Jr. was his usual reserved self. "He was the best horse in the race. His race was perfect. I had to hit him a couple of times in the lane because some times he comes in a little bit but he really won this easily." That was an understatement.
Ray Sibille, jockey, 2nd place finisher San Pedro: "I think he could have run a little better. The pace set up perfectly for us, but we just couldn't beat him (Chicago Six)."
Eusebio Razo Jr. jockey, 3rd place finisher Not Happening: "I only worked this horse one time, I liked the way he went. Today he was running so easy on the lead. When Chicago Six came to us at the quarter pole, he made me go with him. That probably cost us second."
Illinois Coronet payoffs: Chicago Six $4.40, $2.20, $2.10; San Pedro $3.00, $3.00; Not Happening $3.20; $2 Exacta 5-4 $4.80; $2 Trifecta 5-4-1 $38.20.
The final event of the "Festival" looked like it was going to be a one-horse race. Shemya grabbed the lead quickly on this somewhat speed-favoring track and left the field in her dust. At one point she had a 12 length lead over the rest of the field. Turning for home she was still almost three lengths clear. But then, however, she developed a case of the staggers and her margin quickly diminished. She lost the lead one jump from the wire, losing by a neck.
Tap Your Feet, who had her within striking distance from the half, came to get her. Jockey Eduardo Perez was happy with the effort. "We were in pretty good position. I thought we would get there even though that 1 filly (Shemya) had a pretty easy lead. I'm very happy with her effort."
Ray Sibille, 2nd, Shemya: "She ran well. I expected to have the lead and she ran easy, I had no problems, we just were one jump short."
Chris Emigh, 3rd Magic Motel: "She ran a pretty good race. It's been hard to catch front runners but we made a good late move at them."
Illini Princess payoffs: Tap Your Feet $32.40, $10.80, $6.60; Shemya $3.40, $3.40; Macic Motel $4.00; $2 Exacta 2-1 $102.00; $2 Trifecta 2-1-5 $560.00.
It was a great day.
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