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Arlington Park stakes recap (9/6/04)

Contact: David Zenner


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (September 6, 2004) -- Nelson Bunker Hunt's Souris took advantage of a fast pace up front to rally from last and win the $52,600 Safely Kept Stakes by a length on Monday at Arlington Park. Eddie Martin Jr. rode the daughter of Defrere to victory, getting the six furlongs in 1:10.25 over a fast track.

"I knew they were going fast up front because I found myself 10-12 (lengths) back," said Martin. "I knew they had to be going 21 (seconds) and change. I just sat on her and was really patient with her. I chirped at her a little at the three-eighths pole and found myself catching up real fast without asking her at all. Down the lane, I called on her and she just ran on by them."

The Safely Kept was the second win of the season for the 4-year-old filly saddled by Toby Sheets, who is currently the local trainer of record for Steve Asmussen while Asmussen serves a 15-day suspension levied by the Texas stewards. Overall, the win improved her record to six victories from 23 starts and the $31,560 earned pushed her bankroll to $437,251.

Summer Mis, the reigning Illinois Horse of the Year, set the pace in the race despite stumbling at the start, taking the field of six distaffers though quick fractions of :21.91, :45.11 and :57.58.

Smoke Chaser passed Summer Mis in the stretch to finish second. Questionable Past, Sue's Good News and Maple Syrple completed the order of finish.

The second longest price on the board, Souris returned $16.80, $7.20 and $3. Smoke Chaser paid $4.40 and $2.80. Summer Mis paid $2.40.

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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