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Contact: David Zenner
KARLSSON NOTCHES FIRST CAREER WIN
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Sept. 12, 2007) – Apprentice jockey Inez Karlsson scored her first victory when she guided Team Block’s Death Valley to an 8 ¾-length victory in the eighth race at Arlington Park on Wednesday.
“I didn’t have to do much,” said Karlsson, who was practically at a loss for words after the win. “Tonight, I’ll get to drink the champagne that I bought.”
“She gave a very patient ride which is what I like to see,” said trainer Chris Block. “She did a great job.”
Karlsson, 23, from Göteborg, Sweden, which is also home to boxer Ingemar Johansson, was born well after Johansson knocked out Patterson in the summer of 1959, but as a student of boxing history as well as the winner of 14 of her 20 fights, she is well aware of the colorful Johansson and the impact he had on that sport. In fact, her trainer in Sweden was a sparring partner for Johansson in his younger years.
Although still rated second in Sweden’s light flyweight division, Karlsson, the daughter of a boxer father and a mother who played on Sweden’s Olympic basketball team, has put boxing on the backburner as she pursues her dream of becoming a jockey.
Karlsson’s first involvement in horse racing came with Standardbreds in her native Sweden. She later came to Canada, where she eventually shifted her attention to Thoroughbreds while working at Woodbine Race Course near Toronto (where both breeds race).
Last winter she went to New Orleans’ Fair Grounds to breeze horses and came to Arlington Park for this first time this summer.
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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