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Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Arlington-Washington Lassie (GIII)

Contact: David Zenner


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (September 17, 2004) -- OFER Stables LLC's Kota, winner of the Anna M. Fisher Debutante Stakes at Ellis Park on Aug. 17, looks to make it two straight victories when she heads postward Sunday in the $100,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie at Arlington Park. The Grade III Lassie, a one-mile race for 2-year-old fillies, will be the ninth race on a 10-race program that gets underway at 1 p.m. Central time.

The Lassie shares the spotlight on the closing day card with the $200,000 Arlington-Washington Breeders' Cup Futurity (Grade III) for 2-year-old colts and geldings, also at one mile. A third event, the $42,000-added Taylor's Special Stakes for older horses at 5 furlongs on the turf, completes the Sunday stakes trifecta.

A daughter of Indian Charlie, Kota rallied from far back to win the one-mile Debutante in her last start. Previously the Bob Holthus-trained filly ran second in the $54,600 Silver Maiden Stakes over this oval on July 31 after she broke her maiden here earlier that month. John McKee, who was aboard for her Debutante score, has a return call Sunday.

Her main competition could come from a pair of Iowa stakes winners trained by members of the Von Hemel family, the Kelly Von Hemel-trained My Three Sisters and the Don Von Hemel-trained Queansco.

My Three Sisters, who races for the partnership of William Gessman & Ed Cassidy, rides a two-race win streak into the Lassie. The daughter of Defrere won the six-furlong Prairie Meadows Debutante at that Iowa oval on Sept. 4 and she broke her maiden there the previous month. Jesse Campbell has been named to ride My Three Sisters on Sunday.

Dennis L. Hammersmith's Queansco beat Iowa-bred juvenile fillies when capturing the $79,000 Iowa Sorority on August 28. Tim Doocy, who rode both Queansco and My Three Sisters last time out, opted to partner with Queansco for the Lassie.

Another filly with a good chance on Sunday is Naveed Chowhan's Runway Model. A daughter of Petionville, Runway Model ran a good second in the $100,000 Bassinet Stakes at River Downs on Sept. 4 after winning a prep race at that Cincinnati oval by more than nine lengths on Aug. 15. Robby Albarado has been named to ride the Bernie Flint-trained filly.

Completing the field for the Lassie (with jockeys listed) are: William A. Carl's Bubble N Squeak (Chris Emigh); Jack Smith Thoroughbreds' Culinary (C. H. Marquez Jr.); Alex & Joanne Lieblong's Mary Alex (Rene Douglas); Stan Minnic & Bruce C. Hundley's Patience Pays (Eusebio Razo Jr.); and Richard S. & Nancy R. Kaster's Lady Dynasty (Carlos Silva).

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

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