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|Arlington Park Barn Notes (9/12/07)
Contact: Graham Ross
In today's notes:
Arlington Park closes the doors of its 2007 racing season with “Valvoline Instant Oil Change Closing Weekend at Arlington Park” this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Guests of Chicago’s Northwest suburban oval are reminded that the weekend begins with an earlier post time of 2:30 p.m. for Friday’s twilight 10-race program. The earlier post time is due to the waning daylight hours during mid-September.
However, Friday’s Miller Lite Party in the Park at Arlington Park will go on as always, highlighted by the early rock sounds of “Steve Arvey and the Saxtells,” with a final caveat that first race and first song begin at 2:30 p.m.
The racing highlight of Arlington’s closing weekend occurs Saturday with the inaugural running of the $100,000 Ada L. Rice Illinois Owners Stakes.
The mile and a sixteenth grass test is restricted to fillies and mares 3-years-old and up, with an additional prerequisite that at least 51 percent of the horses’ recorded ownership is registered to an owner whose Illinois Racing Board license registration reflects an address in the State of Illinois.
Arlington’s newest stakes event is designed to serve as the female edition of this season’s opening stakes event – the second running of the Russell L. Reineman Illinois Owners Stakes.
The late Ada L. Rice, along with her late husband Daniel, owned and operated the Illinois-based Danada Farm. The Rice’s pink and white silks were worn into the Kentucky Derby winner’s circle aboard 1965 Run for the Roses victor Lucky Debonair. The pair also raced Pia Star – the nation’s top older horse – during that same mid-Sixties time frame.
On Sunday’s closing-day program of Arlington’s 2007 season, Arlington guests can look forward to the final edition of Pepsi Family Day, presented by the Daily Herald, in Arlington’s Park Area.
“Those Funny Little People,” costumed as farmers, will sing and dance to popular country tunes in a family-oriented musical production that will include comedy and audience participation. Show times Sunday will be at 1, 2 and 3 p.m.
Also on Sunday, Junior Jockey Club members who checked in at the JJC tent five or more times during the summer are invited to a special event in the Park Area that will include lunch and a great place to “hang out” all afternoon – with plenty of surprises on tap for those honored guests.
Arbaway Farm and Carson Springs Farm’s coupling of Modjadji and Pretty Jenny – the one-two finishers respectively in this summer’s $83,750 Isaac Murphy Stakes on Arlington’s Prairie State Festival Day July 7 – should rule the choice when they head a field of nine fillies and mares in Thursday’s feature – the $47,700 Safely Kept Stakes.
If the field remains intact for Thursday’s six-furlong headliner, the owners of the winner will receive a $28,620 share of the purse.
Since her victory in the Isaac Murphy, Modjadji finished third in a conditioned allowance race when asked to go seven and a half furlongs July 27 on the Polytrack course, and fourth when asked to get a mile over Arlington’s “soft” grass course on Aug. 12.
Pretty Jenny, beaten a neck by Modjadji in the Isaac Murphy, finished fifth in the $47,750 Nicole’s Dream Stakes at five and a half furlongs on Arlington’s turf when it was rated “good” for Arlington Million Day Aug. 11.
Jockey James Graham is slated to ride Modjadji in the Safely Kept, while Arlington’s defending jockey champion Chris Emigh is listed astride Pretty Jenny.
Facing the Christine Janks-conditioned duo are: William Carl’s Dixie’s Jubilee, Jamie Theriot; Jennifer Kay Beavers’ Jennypike, Earlie Fires; John Tucker’s Excellerant, Eusebio Razo Jr.; Dell Ridge Farm’s Saint Pegasus, Rene Douglas; Dunwoody Farm’s Shriek, E. T. Baird; Patricia Cunningham’s Blue Canyon, Danush Sukie; and Run for the Roses LLC’s Come to Light, Eduardo Perez up.
Jockey Jesus Lopez Castanon didn’t hang his tack at Arlington Park until midway through the summer, but the jockey has made up for lost time – most recently with a riding triple during Sunday’s races.
Castanon took the second half of Sunday’s Daily Double aboard John Fahey III’s Great Plains, captured Sunday’s $48,200 Honor Grades Stakes with Moises Yanez and Hernandez Racing Club’s Voy Por Uno Mas, and went for one more with Hernandez Racing Club’s Lil Carolina in Sunday’s finale to give Hernandez Racing Club an owner double and Yanez a training double for the afternoon.
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