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Contact: David Zenner
SKY MOM RALLIES TO TAKE GRADE III ARLINGTON OAKS
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Auguest 2, 2008) – Heather Stark’s Sky Mom rallied wide into the stretch to engage front running Dreaming of Liz at the furlong marker, battled that one for a sixteenth of a mile before drawing clear to a one-length victory in the Grade III Arlington Oaks Saturday at Arlington Park. Ramsey Zimmerman was aboard the Steve Asmussen-trained daughter of Maria’s Mon, who covered the mile and an eighth over Polytrack in 1:52.92.
“(Dreaming of Liz) came back a little bit but my horse had enough to hang on,” said Zimmerman. “I’m really happy with her. She relaxed and had a big kick.”
The Arlington Oaks was the third stakes win of the year for Sky Mom, who previously captured the $50,000 Martha Washington Stakes at Oaklawn Park in February and the $200,000 WinStar Oaks at Sunland Park the following month. The $58,800 winner’s share boosted her bankroll to $452,891. Her overall record improved to six wins from 15 starts but on synthetic surfaces she boasts an impressive three for five mark.
Dreaming of Liz, who won the Grade III Arlington-Washington Lassie here last year, set the pace in the race through fractions of 24.42 seconds, 48.64 seconds and 1:13.69.
“She ran a good race,” said Dreaming of Liz’s rider, Hall of Fame jockey Earlie Fires. “She broke a little slow, but everything else went well. She just got outrun there at the end of the race. I thought she was going to make a little comeback, but she couldn’t hang on. We’ll try again.”
Apple Martini was another 2 ¾ lengths back in third in the seven-horse field and was followed by 2-1 favorite Day of Victory, French Kiss, Miss Mafioso and Temper Temper to complete the order of finish.
“I think the heat got her a little bit,” said Rene Douglas, who rode beaten favorite Day of Victory. “Going in the gate she was already a little washed out, but I also think she’d have run a little better if there was a little more pace in front of her to run at.”
Sky Mom, second choice in the wagering, paid $6.40, $3.40 and $3.20. Dreaming of Liz returned $4.20 and $3.40. Apple Martini paid $4.40.
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 www.arlingtonpark.com.
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