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Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Chicago Handicap (Grade III)

Contact: David Zenner


Matron’s Top Two Finishers Turn Back in Distance

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (June 26, 2008) – Courtlandt Farm’s Indescribable and WinStar Farm LLC’s Leah’s Secret, the one-two finishers in the Grade III Arlington Matron Handicap at nine furlongs last month, cut back in distance to seven furlongs for their rematch in the Grade III Chicago Handicap at Arlington Park, the 10th race on Saturday’s 11-race program that gets underway at 1 pm Central.

The Chicago Handicap carries a purse of $150,000 which includes $50,000 from the Breeders’ Cup fund for horses eligible to that program. The Irish-bred filly, Peter Bradley III’s Dhanyata, is the only filly not eligible.

Indescribable and Leah’s Secret were separated by a half-length at the wire in the Matron with the former getting the nod despite being boxed in on the turn. A daughter of Pleasant Tap, Indescribable has shown an affinity for synthetic surfaces such as Arlington’s Polytrack, as the 4-year-old filly sports a three-for-six record in races over all-weather tracks. Now trained by Hall-of-Fame conditioner Bill Mott, she is one of three distaffers assigned 117 pounds for Saturday’s headliner and will leave from the outside post in the 11-horse line-up with James Graham aboard.

Leah’s Secret, also assigned 117 pounds by racing secretary Kevin Greely, will start one stall to Indescribable’s inside. The Todd Pletcher-trained 5-year-old has been second in each of her last two starts. Prior to her runner-up finish in the Matron, the daughter of Tiger Ridge ran second to Ginger Punch in the Grade II Louisville Handicap at Churchill Downs on May 2. Though competitive in graded stakes company the last two years, Leah’s Secret is winless since capturing the $100,000 Anne Arundel Stakes at Laurel Park in November 2006. Arlington Park’s leading rider Rene Douglas has the call Saturday.

The Pletcher stable is also represented in the Chicago Handicap by two other distaffers – Bonnie & Sy Baskin’s Featherbed (Jesse Campbell up, 116 pounds), runner-up in the $53,000 Fit For a Queen here May 25; and Edward Evans’ Mini Sermon (Jose Velez Jr., 116), third in that same race.

Dhanyata also has been assigned 117 pounds for Saturday’s affair and will start from post nine under Eddie Razo. The Eddie Kenneally-trained daughter of Danetime finished second in the 5 ½-furlong $100,000 Satin and Lace Stakes at Presque Isle Downs last month after previously running fourth in the Grade III Hendrie Stakes at Woodbine on May 1. The 4-year-old filly has won over a synthetic surface, capturing the Group III Sirenia Stakes at Great Britain’s Kempton in September 2006.

Completing the field for the Chicago Handicap are: Double Diamond LLC’s Acadia Breeze (E. T. Baird, 113); Joseph Novogratz’ Pro Pink (Eddie Perez, 114); Robert Evans’ Akronism (Pedro Morales, 116); Dean Hayes’ Tequila Dayjur (Tracy Hebert, 110); Millennium Farms’ Sweet Ambition (Junior Alvarado, 114); and C. R. Trout’s Starry Pie (Ramzey Zimmerman, 114).

Arlington Park – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 96-day meet in 2008 from Friday, May 2 through Sunday, Sept. 21. Arlington Park, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates 11 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, The Inferno featuring Trackside OTB in South Beloit, Rookies featuring Trackside OTB in Homewood and Salerno-Pincente Ristorante featuring Trackside OTB in Hodgkins. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at





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