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Hawthorne Racecourse (4/9/06)

Contact: DAK Productions
(708) 222-4540

Illinois Derby Winner Heads Home; Another Trombetta Star on His Way

Sweetnorthernsaint, the overwhelming winner of Saturday’s Grade II $500,000 Illinois Derby at Hawthorne, came out of the race “in good shape,” and if all goes well, the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 6 at Churchill will be next on his agenda.

“He left (Hawthorne) early this morning and is on his way back home (Maryland),” said trainer Michael Trombetta. “We’ll see where he’s at condition wise in the next week before plotting out a plan. Off of that (the Illinois Derby win), if the horse is good, we’ll go to the Derby.”

The gelded son of Sweetsouthernsaint’s final time of 1:49.82 for nine furlongs was sparkling, and the 9 ¼ length win produced the second longest margin of victory in the 49-year history of the Illinois Derby. Only last year’s victor, Greeley’s Galaxy (9 ½ lengths), won by more.

“I watched the replay a couple of times, and I was very pleased with the way he ran,” Trombetta added. “He got the last 1/8th in twelve seconds and widened his margin (of victory). It was very encouraging.”

Trombetta also added that Take Achance On Me, his star Prairie State sprinter, would ship to Hawthorne to defend his title in the Chicagoland Handicap on Illinois Champions Day, Saturday, April 29.

“We brought him back off a nine-month layoff a couple of weeks ago, and he ran very well (2nd beaten less than a length in a conditioned allowance at Laurel),” Trombetta said. “The stable has had some pretty good luck at Hawthorne, and we look forward to coming back.”

Hawthorne’s spring 2006 Thoroughbred meet runs February 24 through May 4 with live racing five days per week: Friday through Tuesday. Post time is 1:10 p.m. Saturday through Tuesday and 3 p.m. on Friday. Hawthorne is dark Wednesdays and Thursdays and Easter Sunday April 16, but full card simulcasting from racetracks across the country is offered every day.

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