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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Balmoral Park (5/3/07)
Contact: Tom Kelley
BUSY WEEKEND ON TAP AT BALMORAL
With a big Saturday program featuring a $22,130 ISOBA Stake, a $21,500 Free For All, a $15,500 Filly & Mare Open and a festive Cinco De Mayo bash it figures to be a fun-filled weekend of racing and partying at Balmoral Park.
On the racing side of the docket Saturday’s fourth race, a $22,130 ISOBA Stake for three-year-old colt and gelding pacers, gets top billing.
Headlining the competition in this battle is Sawgrass Farms up-and-coming star Fox Valley Gambler. The gelded son of Richess Hanover failed to hit the board in three starts last year but he’s quickly making up for lost time with four straight wins to open his sophomore campaign. His latest triumph in the $20,000 Taser Gun Stake at Maywood Park comes on the heels of an eye-opening win in 1:52.3 here at Balmoral Park on April 18. Jeff Cullipher will once again get the call to drive the Jill Arnold trainee.
The $21,500 Albatross Free For All features the return of the great Illinois-bred My Boy David.
The pride of owners Arthur & Shirley Le Vin finished a strong third in the $200,000 Dan Patch at Hoosier Park last time out, pushing the four-year-old gelding’s career bankroll up to $934,884. The Homer Hochstetler trainee captured the $20,000 Song Cycle in his last Balmoral Park appearance, stopping the clock in 1:52.1, on April 14.
The ladies will also have their turn to shine on Saturday, as a field of seven distaffers slug it out in the $15,500 Three Diamonds Open-Handicap.
This looks to be a wide-open event with recent Open winners Spectacular Cam, Bob’s Minute Maid and Mama Kash sharing the support of the wagering public.
Off the track there will plenty happening both day and night at Balmoral on Saturday. A “special” Kentucky Derby Viewing Party featuring a host of different party packages will highlight the daytime action. A huge Cinco de Mayo celebration, complete with a Tequila tasting and authentic Mexican buffet, will keep the festivities going at a lively pace during the live racing action, which gets underway at 7:20 p.m.
The stakes action continues on Sunday night with Illinois conceived and foaled pacing fillies taking center stage in a $21,460 ISOBA Stake.
A very evenly matched group of 11 will go postward in this test. The top contenders include Ronald Phillips & John Carver’s Faith Leigh who recently won the $67,000 final of the Jersey Girl Series at the Meadowlands, HBH Standardbreds' Sportsfancy, a seven-time winner who earned nearly $125,000 last season, and Rattlesnake Ranch’s Mrs. Grant Seven, who has 17 wins in 24 career starts.
First post on Sunday is 6:30 p.m.
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