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HAWTHORNE RACE COURSE

Hawthorne Racecourse (11/13/04)

Contact: Jim Miller
(708) 780-3700

Top Efforts Highlight Illinois Festival Day

STICKNEY, IL -- Six stakes races for Illinois runners were contested at Hawthorne on Saturday as the Illinois Festival of racing was run. These races often help to determine the divisional champions in Illinois as many fine efforts were put forth.

Powerless Handicap – Synco Peach Rolls Home

A field of six female sprinters went to the post in the $101,700 Powerless Handicap. After dueling through quick early fractions of :22.3 for the first quarter and :46.2 for the half, Synco Peach pulled away from pace setting Jaguar City in the lane, to win the Powerless by two and a half lengths, crossing the wire in 1:11. Owned by Lamont Nienast, LLC and trained by Percy Scherbenske, Synco Peach was ridden home by Larry Sterling, Jr. Holding on for second in the Powerless was Jaguar City while Fighting Fever finished third.

The win was the seventh from 11 career starts for Synco Peach as the $67,020 winners share boosted here career earnings to $221,400. Synco Peach returned $6.60, $3.20 and $2.80 as the favorite. Jaguar City came back $3.00 and $2.80 while Fighting Fever returned $4.20 to show.

“This mare has done everything I ever asked of her,” stated Scherbenske. “She had a slight setback when she got hurt a year ago but she came back very well. She does what she has to do. She’s a nice horse. In spite of the weight she won anyway. I’m kind of at a loss for words. We just love her. I’m going to give her a little break and bring her back in time for the spring stakes.”

Jockey Larry Sterling, Jr. had things easy, “She broke bad then she just ran off from there. End of story.”

Lightning Jet Handicap – Silver Bid Tough Again

A strong field of six male sprinters went to the post in the $100,875 Lightning Jet Handicap as Silver Bid emerged on top with the victory, winning by 1¼ lengths over Big Bold Sweep, stopping the clock in 1:10.2. Sitting behind quick early fractions set by Storm the Beach of :21.3 and :45.3, Silver Bid took over turning for home and never looked back under jockey Carlos Montalvo as he notched his 15th career win from 40 tarts and sixth win in eight starts on the year. Owned by Terry Renfrow and Eugene Young and trained by Joel Berndt, the six-year-old gelding earned $66,526 for his victory, boosting his career earnings to $586,302.

Silver Bid returned $6.00, $3.20 and $2.40. Big Bold Sweep returned $4.20 and $2.80 while Shandy closed to run third, returning $3.60 to show.

“We just have to throw his last race out,” said winning trainer Joel Berndt. “There were some doubters after last race but we never did doubt. He was training well going into this race. Carlos (Montalvo) rode him perfect. Give the credit to Carlos and the horse. “

“We came out of the gate clean. He gave me everything he had,” said jockey Carlos Montalvo. “I was proud to be back on him. I’m excited for him and for everybody involved with this horse.”

Showtime Deb Stakes – Stumble Costs Toll Taker, Bluesbdancing Gets Win

It took less than a jump out of the gate to eliminate the 3-5 Toll Taker in the Showtime Deb Stakes as the two-year-old filly stumbled horribly out of the gate, losing rider C.H. Marquez Jr. and opening up things for the rest of the field.

With ten remaining runners, it was Spanning running to the front through fractions of :22 to the quarter before Bluesbdancing and jockey Carlos Montalvo took over nearing the top of the stretch. After a half in :46.2, Bluesbdancing was in control, running away from the field to a 3¼ length win in the $97,400 event.

Meadow Bride closed well to finish second while Cart’s Turn was third. Bluesbdancing stopped the clock in 1:12.1 as the winner’s share of $55,440 boosted Bluesbdancing’s earnings to $93,840. Owned by Bob and Nancy Bartels and trained by Terrel Gore, Bluesbdancing is three for three on her career.

With the favorite out, prices were big as Bluesbdancing returned $10.80, $7.60 and $5.80. Meadow Bride came back $14.40 and $11.20 while Cart’s Turn returned $24.80 to show.

With back-to-back wins, jockey Carlos Montalvo had a big day, “I’m the happiest man on earth. We benefited by the favorite stumbling out of the gate. Mr. Gore had her ready. She’s a very nice filly.”

Trainer Terrel Gore kept his filly undefeated, “It was too bad for the favorite (Toll Taker, who stumbled at the start and lost her rider). I wanted to beat her but I wanted to do it in a race and beat her fair and square. She’s (Bluesbdancing) a pretty good horse. She was good enough today. We love her. This is probably her last race of the year but we’re not sure yet.”

Sun Power Stakes – Humor At Last Gets Job Done

In the $90,225 Sun Power Stakes it looked to be a two horse affair and was but the longer priced of the two got the job done as Ron Armstong and John Wallace’s Humor at Last got clear sailing and was able to outkick favored Stormy Afternoon to the wire.

Setting a heated pace in the Sun Power was Yukon’s Gambler as he and Chateau pressed the pace through a quick quarter in :22.1 and :46.2. As the field bunched turning for home, Humor at Last and jockey Larry Sterling. Jr. had the jump on Stormy Afternoon as he got caught in traffic. Drawing away in the stretch, Humor at Last held on for a 2¼ length win while Stormy Afternoon finished second and Win Me Over closed to finish third. Stopping the clock in 1:11.3, Humor At Last earned $54,135 for the win.

Trained by Anthony Mitchell, Humor at Last returned $8.00, $3.00 and $2.40. Stormy Afternoon came back $2.20 and $2.10 while Win Me Over returned $2.40 to show.

Mitchell was impressed with Humor At Last’s effort. “The way I looked at the race it was just between Stormy Afternoon and us. I didn’t expect Larry to go to the front but Larry has a great head on his shoulders. It just amazes me. He loves this horse. Larry was the one who wanted to go into this race. This is a two turn horse as far as I’m concerned but Larry told be not to worry about it. I have a great team and Larry is a very important part of it.”

Sterling reciprocated: “After his first start the lights went on and he has been a totally different horse in his last three workouts. You can do anything you want with him. He’s all business.”

Illini Princess Handicap – Cashmere Miss Pulls Upset

A field of 14 was assembled for the $99,000 Illini Princess Handicap as pace made the race. When the gates sprung, the middle of the field was squeezed, allowing for Lucky Gambler to shake loose early, setting fractions of :23.3, :47.1 and 1:12.4. Sitting close to the pace was 7-5 favorite Keeping the Gold while Carlos Silva and Cashmere Miss weren’t too far behind, rating in fourth. As the field bunched turning for home, Cashmere Miss grabbed the lead and went on to a2 ¼ length win, stopping the clock in 1:46 for the 1 1/16 miles. Arsen Annie held well to finish second in the Illini Princess while Ms. Lydonia ran third.

Owned by Richard Rudolph and Michael Vranich and trained by Spanky Broussard, Cashmere Miss returned $29.20, $13.80, and 7.00. Arsen Annie came back $13.80 and $11.40 while Ms. Lydonia returned $5.60 to show.

The win was the sixth of 28 on the career of Cashmere Miss as the $58,500 winner’s share boosted her career earnings to $290,613.

Jockey Carlos Silva got the jump on the field in the Illini Princess: “She broke good. I was able to get position in the first turn. I let the speed go and just set waiting on the outside. Turning for home I was able to make the lead. She responded very well.”

High Alexander Handicap – Sterling Gets Third Win

In the $96,275 High Alexander Handicap, jockey Larry Sterling Jr. capped off a big day as he guided home his third winner on the stakes card, bringing Home of Stars to the victory.

Setting the fractions was longshot King Magic as he went :24.1, :48, and 1:13 for three quarters. Turning for home, the field engulfed King Magic, led by Home of Stars as favorites Wiggins and Scooter Roach sat behind, looking to make their move. While Wiggins kicked in a bit, Scooter Roach flattened out, but there was no catching Home of Stars as he went on to a 1¾ length win in 1:45.1. Owned by Russell L. Reineman Stable, Inc and trained by Frank Springer, Home of Stars notched his fifth career win from 15 starts, as the $56,115 winner’s share in the High Alexander brought his career earnings to $192,126.

Home of Stars returned $17.60, $8.20 and $4.00. Longtime Illinois favorite Magic Doe rallied to finish second, bringing in $10.60 and $6.00 while Wiggins held third, returning $2.60 to show.

Sterling had himself a good day, “The festival was very good to me. I knew we were live coming into this race. Everything went our way and it all worked out.”

Hawthorne races from September 24 through January 2. Racing is slated for five days a week, Wednesday through Sunday and four days a week in December, Thursday through Sunday with an option to run on Wednesdays. First post daily is 1:10 pm. Hawthorne can be contacted at 708-780-3700 or on the web at www.hawthorneracecourse.com.

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