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Arlington Park

Arlington Park Barn Notes (7/25/07)

Contact: Graham Ross

In today's notes:


Saturday’s Grade II Washington Park Handicap – Arlington’s richest non-turf stakes with its $300,000 purse as well as the Chicago oval’s second oldest – may have a locally-owned and trained horse as its post time favorite.

Frank Calabrese’s Lewis Michael, trained by Wayne Catalano, gets the chance to step out of his 2006 Juvenile Filly Eclipse Award-winning younger full sister Dreaming of Anna’s shadow in this weekend’s headliner, the 75th running of the mile and three-sixteenths Washington Park ‘Cap but first over Arlington’s new Polytrack course.

Owned by Arlington’s perennial leading owner and conditioned by a trainer of similar local credits, Lewis Michael was much the best in a one-mile conditioned allowance race at last asking July 15 when he drew off for a handy seven-length score.

Previously on May 26 at Arlington, Lewis Michael finished second in the Grade III Hanshin Cup, the first graded stakes of the season. Before that on April 14 at Keeneland, Lewis Michael was also runner-up in the Grade II Commonwealth Stakes.

As a sophomore last year, Lewis Michael finished second by a neck to Aaron and Marie Jones’ Sunriver in Belmont Park’s Grade II Peter Pan.

Coincidentally, Sunriver also has suffered full-sibling identity issues as the younger brother to 2005’s Older Filly or Mare Eclipse Award winner Ashado.


Stonecrest Farm’s Perfect Drift, a Chicago fan favorite as the only horse to win Arlington Park’s Grade II Washington Park Handicap twice without doing it in successive seasons, will not be able to defend his alternate-year title in Saturday’s 75th running.

However, although recently diagnosed with a minor injury to his left front cannon bone, the 8-year-old has not been officially retired, so another Washington Park run in 2008 remains a possibility.

Currently the second-richest active horse with more than $4.6 million in career earnings, Perfect Drift first won the mile and three-sixteenths Washington Park ‘Cap in 2003 and returned to the winner’s circle in 2005. The altered son of Dynaformer was taken out of training this week and will be turned out at Stonecrest Farm in Kentucky for several months before being reevaluated.

A decision on Perfect Drift’s future will be then be made by Perfect Drift’s owner-breeder Dr. William Reed of Stonecrest.

Following his win in the 2003 Washington Park ‘Cap on the main track, Perfect Drift returned to run in that year’s Grade I Arlington Million two weeks later over Arlington’s world famous turf course and finished eighth.


Highlighting Friday’s Miller Lite Party in the Park at Arlington Park will be “The Charleston Sound Machine” – a band that features an eclectic mix of classic and original rock music. First race and first song Friday will be at 3 p.m.

On Saturday, during Arlington’s Summer Bash & BBQ, more great rock music will be heard in the Park Area when the band “Nine Fifty” takes the stage, with first race and first song at 1 p.m.

Served as the special from the grill Saturday will be a pulled BBQ chicken sandwich.

On Sunday’s Pepsi Family Day, presented by the Daily Herald at Arlington Park, Arlington guests young and old get to enjoy a Mardi Gras atmosphere, and participants don’t even have to bring their own beads.

Children’s arts and crafts activities will include making colorful hats and beads to be worn in a special Mardi Gras parade in the Park Area at 3:30 p.m.


Once again this weekend, Arlington Park will offer a guaranteed Late Pick 4 Pool of $25,000 on Friday and will double that with a guaranteed Late Pick 4 Pool of $50,000 on Saturday.

The Late Pick 4 takes place on the seventh through 10 races on both days.

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