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Arlington Park

Arlington Park Barn Notes (8/16/08)

Contact: Graham Ross

In today's notes:


What’s better than becoming the first female rider to win four winners on a single racing program at Arlington Park? Doing it twice in the same summer!

That’s what Swedish-born apprentice jockey Inez Karlsson did Friday at Chicago’s showcase Thoroughbred oval – thanks in a large part to two-time Arlington trainer champion Frank Kirby, who saddled three of her Friday winners and was one of the first conditioners to pick up on the riding talents of Karlsson.

Karlsson, 23, a former boxer in Sweden who gradually gravitated to horseracing after being knocked out for the first time in her pugilistic career, won four races at Arlington July 11 to set a new standard for female jockeys in Chicago.

Kirby – known for winning two Arlington training championships 30 years apart – gave Karlsson the leg up on two of those winners five weeks ago, but on Friday he hoisted her aboard three of his horses for his second training triple of the current season.

“That girl is a good rider,” said Kirby Saturday morning as he stood on the Arlington apron during training hours, “and she’s getting better every day. She’s a hard worker and she deserves the success she is having this summer.”

That success, according to Arlington’s morning line maker Joe Kristufek, includes being Arlington’s leading rider for the month of August. Her Friday four-bagger also vaults her into seventh position in this summer’s local standings.

“She and (fellow apprentice) Brandon (Meier, fifth in the standings through Friday) are energizing the whole game here this summer,” said Karlsson’s agent Penny Ffitch-Heyes on Saturday. “I heard someone talking to their friends in the paddock yesterday saying, ‘Yeah, I bet on the girl again.’ That’s the kind of (occasional race goers) we need to get out here more.”

Friday’s Karlsson-Kirby tandem triple started in the opener with Robert Sedlacek and Rita Pucci’s Fuhr the Stars, continued in the third with that same ownership’s Pretty Slic Chick and concluded in the eighth with J. David Banks and Hondo Ranch’s Wagon Road.

Karlsson’s other trip to the winner’s circle Friday came astride Mark Von Drasek’s Southern Sight for trainer Andy Hansen in the fifth race of the afternoon.

Former Arlington jockey, South African-born Zoe Cadman, who helped Karlsson in the initial stages of her career, once won three races in a row at Arlington but never had a four-win day on the Chicago circuit.

Karlsson won the first race of career as a jockey last Sept. 12 at Arlington aboard Team Block’s Death Valley for trainer Chris Block.


Mark Hoffman’s Kicken N Screaming, a 2-year-old gelding trained by Donna Dupuy, will make the second start of his career Sunday in Arlington Park’s fifth race after finishing fourth in his debut July 20.

Dee Tee Stables’ Kickin N Screamin, a 5-year-old mare trained by Charles Simon, finished second in her last start July 24 at Arlington Park but has an unspecified next engagement at this time.

Kicken N Screaming, a son of Chelsey Cat out of a Fit to Fight mare that was bred in North Carolina, breezed four furlongs in :48 Saturday morning in a tune-up for Sunday’s start.

Kickin N Screamin, a 5-year-old daughter of 2000’s Arlington Million winner Chester House, is out of Wolf Power mare, is a Kentucky-bred, and most recently breezed on Arlington Million Day Aug. 9, getting a half-mile over the Polytrack in :48.20. Her ownership is made up of a group of about 30 people that was organized through an Internet message board.

What’s going on here? This kind of confusion brings back memories of 1971, when two of the best 3-year-olds in the nation that year season named Bold Reason and Bold Reasoning.

Bold Reason, trained by the late Angel Penna, captured Saratoga’s Travers as highlight of New York’s summer racing season that August. Bold Reasoning, conditioned by the late Nick Gonzales, won Garden State Park’s Jersey Derby, main event of New Jersey’s spring session that May on Memorial Day.

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