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|Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Sea o' Erin BC Mile
Contact: David Zenner
WARLEIGH TOPS COMPETITIVE SEA O' ERIN BREEDERS' CUP MILE
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (August 5, 2004) -- Rosendo G. Parra's Warleigh, winner of the John B. Connally Breeders' Cup Handicap at Sam Houston Race Park in April, looks for his first victory since that Texas tally when he heads a competitive field of 11 entered in Saturday's $150,000 Sea o' Erin Breeders' Cup Mile at Arlington Park.
The Sea o' Erin Breeders' Cup Mile, to be run at the eight-furlong distance over Arlington's world famous turf course, features $100,000 in purse money from Arlington Park and an additional $50,000 available for horses nominated to the Breeders' Cup program. Of the 11 entrants, all but Gwaihir are eligible for added incentives.
A 6-year-old son of Lord At War, Warleigh comes to Arlington off a fourth-place finish in the $200,000 Dallas Turf Cup at Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie in his last start. In that nine-furlong Texas test, the Steve Asmussen charge rallied four-wide to put in a bid mid-stretch but faltered late. Previously, he rallied from mid pack to run third in the Grade II Argent Dixie Stakes at Pimlico on the Preakness Day undercard. Two-time Arlington Park riding champion Aaron Gryder returns to the suburban Chicago oval to guide Warleigh, who will carry high weight of 119 pounds Saturday.
Slated to face the highweight (with jockey and weight assignment) from the rail out are: David Maracich's False Promises (Eusebio Razo Jr., 114 pounds); George Johnson and Crown's Way Farm's Garesche (Chris Emigh, 114); Richard L. Duchossois' Just Gossip (James Graham, 113); Donna C. Arnold's Mr. Krisley (Eddie Martin Jr., 114); and James Messineo's Major Rhythm (Earlie Fires, 116).
Also, J. S. Cubed Stables' Holy Conflict (Frank Lovato Jr., 115); Louie J. Roussel III's Intern (Randall Meier, 113); Oak Crest Farm LLC's Herculated (C. H. Marquez Jr., 118); Justlikedawg (Shane Laviolette, 113); and Al & Saundra S. Kirkwood's Gwaihir (Jesse Campbell, 110).
Herculated returns from nearly a three-month layoff to contest the Sea o' Erin. In his last start before the break, he ran a disappointing 10th as the 7-2 lukewarm choice of the public in the Dixie. Before that, the Mike Stidham-trained 4-year-old was second beaten only three-quarters of a length by Arlington Million hopeful Mystery Giver in the Grade II Mervyn Muniz Jr. Memorial Handicap at the Fair Grounds in March.
Major Rhythm has won a pair of tough allowance races over this course this summer with those victories sandwiching a seventh-place finish in the $110,000 Opening Verse Handicap at Churchill Downs on June 12.
Arlington Park -- the Chicago area's premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. -- is running a 96-day meet in 2004 from Friday, May 14 through Sunday, Sept. 19. Arlington Park, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates eight off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities: Trackside Arlington Park (Arlington Heights), Trackside Quad City Downs (East Moline), Trackside Chicago, Trackside McHenry, Trackside Rockford, Trackside South Beloit, Trackside Waukegan and Longshots featuring Trackside OTB in South Elgin. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at www.arlingtonpark.com.
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