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Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Arlington Matron Handicap (G3)

Contact: David Zenner


Janks-Trained Trio Heads Local Contingent in Grade III Race

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Aug. 31, 2006) – Graded stakes-placed distaffers Take a Check and Maggie Slew top a field of six fillies and mares entered for Saturday’s $150,000 Arlington Matron Handicap at Arlington Park. The Grade III race will be run at the distance of a mile and an eighth and goes as the eighth of nine races on the holiday weekend card.

Take a Check, owned by Fitzhugh LLC, comes into Saturday’s Matron off a third-place finish in the Grade II Delaware Handicap at that Midlantic racecourse. Previously, the daughter of Touch Gold ran third in three other stakes events, the $100,000 Obeah Handicap at Delaware, the $50,000 Shine Again Stakes at Pimlico and the $60,000 Snow Goose Stakes at Laurel. The Richard Small trainee will be ridden for the first time Saturday by Arlington-based reinsman Francisco Torres.

Swifty Farms’ Maggie Slew, a 3-year-old daughter of Seattle Slew, finished third in each of her last two trips to the post, taking home the show money against her own age group in the Grade III Iowa Oaks at Prairie Meadows June 30 and against older rivals in the Grade III Gardenia Handicap at Ellis Park Aug. 5. The Dave Vance-trained miss, who will be ridden Saturday by Randall Toups, owns two victories this season, both coming in allowance races at Churchill Downs.

Arlington Park’s leading stakes trainer Christine Janks has entered three distaffers – For Gillian, Stop a Train and Sunset Kisses – in Saturday’s headliner. Of that trio, only Sunset Kisses, who is owned by Letto Thoroughbreds, comes in off a stakes win having captured the $41,375 Mariah’s Storm Stakes in her last start. The daughter of Sky Classic is three for six this year and will be ridden Saturday by Larry Sterling Jr.

Stop a Train, owned by Arbaway Farms, Carson Springs Farm and the Estate of William Lydon, has been an unstoppable train this season, winning her last three starts and four of five overall at Arlington while her stablemate For Gillian is looking for her first victory of 2006. Arlington’s leading rider Chris Emigh has been named aboard both halves of the entry.

Completing the line-up for the Arlington Matron is Strode Stable LLC’s Sea Siren. The Ralph Nicks-trained daughter of Stormy Atlantic was 10th in the Gardenia last time out but won a second-level allowance at Churchill Downs two starts back. Mark Guidry has the mount.

Arlington Park – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 95-day meet in 2006 from Friday, May 5 through Tuesday, Sept. 12. 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 Lucky’s featuring Trackside OTB in South Elgin. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at

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