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HAWTHORNE NOTES

Hawthorne Racecourse Stakes Results

Contact: Jim Miller (708) 780-3700

LITTLE SUCKER STAKES RECAP

It seems that there was one more option after all. Most of the attention, if money wagered could be an accurate indication, was focused on Come September and Q. P. Cat, the first and second-place finishers, in reverse order, of last year's edition of the Little Sucker Stakes. But it was Out Of Options, a recent $14,000 claim by Michael Reavis as owner and trainer, who earned the lion's share of the $100,000 purse.

Q. P. Cat, last year's winner, was able to grab the early lead quickly and seemed to have everything her own way while setting somewhat modest fractions. However Out Of Options, who raced in fifth, about five lengths out of it early, collared Q. P. Cat in the middle of the stretch and simply wore her down.

Jockey Chris Valovich was pleased with "Cat's" effort. "She ran really well. I couldn't complain about her race. I was planning on laying back in third, but when the hole on the rail opened up on the first turn, I had to take it. Turning for home, I knew I had some horse left, but I was just simply outfinished. It's always a pleasure to ride this filly, and I have no complaints about her trip."

Winning jockey Larry Sterling Jr. had a bit more to celebrate. "It was perfect. It really went perfect. It set up for her really. I liked her going in. The pace was going to set up perfect. There were three speed horses in there, I didn't like the other one (Little Lighty) scratching because she was going to push the speed but it ended up all right. It didn't look like Q. P. Cat got off that well and she was a little rank in the first part of it and it took awhile to get her settled down. But it turned out great for us."

Alfredo Juarez Jr., aboard beaten favorite Come September, explained: "I don't have an excuse. She had a hard time trying to go to the lead and when we came to the stretch she was just kind of flat."

Time of the race: 24.41, 47.91, 1:13.17, 1:40.77 with a final time of 1:47.97 over a track surface listed as good.

Payoffs for the Little Sucker: Out Of Options $25.20, $20.60, $5.40; Q. P. Cat $3.80, $2.80; and Cottage Rose $4.60. The $2 Exacta (3-2) paid $85.00; and the $2 Trifecta (3-2-4) paid $852.40.

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