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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Arlington Oaks (GIII)
Contact: David Zenner
‘SERMON’ TO BE GIVEN IN SATURDAY’S ARLINGTON OAKS
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Aug. 16, 2007) – Edward Evans’ Mini Sermon, winner of the $47,450 Sweetest Chant Stakes on July 28, returns in search of her fifth straight victory when she heads postward as the 9-5 morning line favorite in the $100,000 Arlington Oaks. The Grade III race for 3-year-old fillies will be run at a mile and an eighth over Arlington’s Polytrack surface and goes as race nine on the track’s 11-race card that starts at 1 p.m. Central time.
A daughter of Pulpit, Mini Sermon’s win skein began when she broke her maiden over Keeneland’s Polytrack in April when sprinting seven furlongs. Her next two victories, including a score in the restricted Marking Time Stakes at Belmont Park, were both contested over the one-turn mile distance. Stretched out to two turns for the first time when sent off as the 4-5 choice in the Sweetest Chant, the Todd Pletcher-trained miss stalked the early pace before taking the lead on the second turn en route to a one-length tally under Rene Douglas, who rides again Saturday.
Her main competition is likely to come from Darley Stable’s Marietta, winner of the Grade III Iowa Oaks at Prairie Meadows in her last start June 29. In that mile and a sixteenth test, the Machiavellian filly was well off the pace before rallying in the stretch to take over and draw off for a 1 ¾-length victory. Trained by Eoin Harty, Marietta will be ridden Saturday by Mark Guidry.
Millennium Farms’ Humble Janet comes to Arlington after finishing fourth in the Grade I Coaching Club American Oaks at Belmont Park last month. In her start prior to the CCA Oaks, the Steve Asmussen-trained daughter of Humble Eleven finished second to Marietta in the Iowa Oaks despite being forced six-wide in the stretch. Robby Albarado gets the call.
David Jacobs’ Marquee Delivery and G. Watts Humphrey & William Farish’s Aspiring, the two-three finishers in the Sweetest Chant, also figure prominently in the Arlington Oaks. James Graham has a return call aboard the Philip Sims-trained Marquee Delivery while Chris Emigh picks up the mount aboard Aspiring, who is trained by Rusty Arnold.
Completing the field for the Arlington Oaks (with jockey listed) are: Carl Raabe’s Marquise (Francisco Torres) and Hurstland Farm LLC’s Kiss With a Twist (E. T. Baird).
Arlington Park – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 94-day meet in 2007 from Friday, May 4 through Sunday, Sept. 16. Arlington Park, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates nine off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities: Trackside Arlington Park (Arlington Heights), Trackside Chicago, Trackside Quad City Downs (East Moline), Trackside Rockford, Trackside Waukegan, Fat Sam’s Bar & Grill featuring Trackside OTB in Lockport, Lucky’s featuring Trackside OTB in South Elgin, Nicolino’s featuring Trackside OTB in McHenry and The Inferno featuring Trackside OTB in South Beloit. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at www.arlingtonpark.com.
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