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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Balmoral Park (4/14/08)
Contact: Tom Kelley
BEFORE HE CHEATS IMPRESSIVE IN RETURN
The Dirk Simpson trained four-year-old, who posted a record of 21-5-0 in 28 starts as a sophomore, picked up right where he left off as he scored in come from behind fashion for the red-hot Brandon Simpson. Allowed to bide his time at the back of the pack through opening splits of 28.3 & 57.4, the gelded son of Valley Victor came roaring up first over on the far turn and he had the pace-setting Tremendous Hit (Joe Anderson) clearly in his sights as the field reached the three-quarter-pole in 1:26.3.
With nothing but open territory in front of him, Before He Cheats rattled off a wicked 27.3 final quarter-mile, putting any doubts about his conditioning after the layoff to rest in eye-catching fashion as he stopped the clock in 1:54.3.
Although he was impressed by the gelding’s effort, driver Brandon Simpson was not surprised. “Dad told me that he was definitely ready to go for this start,” said Brandon. “The only worry I had during the race was when Joe (Anderson) popped his wheel disk at the top of the stretch. That kind of startled my horse but he regrouped perfectly and then trotted home strong all on his own.”
Tentative plans call for this career winner of almost $330,000 to make one more start on the local scene before shipping east for various stakes engagements.
The Filly & Mare Open Pace also produced a strong effort as Bohemian Enterprises & Anderson Racing’s Black Brinny posted a front stepping score in 1:53.1 for “comeback kid” Ryan Anderson.
The four-year-old daughter of Real Artist showed a great deal of grit and determination in her victory shrugging off a tough opening quarter to get the job done after being headed at the top of the stretch. The win was the third in six starts this year for the Joe Anderson trained miss.
In the trotting final Roger Welch and Michael Silber’s Spirit Lifter rallied in the final strides to nip heavily favored Fox Valley Love Ya (Dale Hiteman) in 2:00.0.
Handled perfectly by his conditioner, this striking chestnut appeared to be beaten with 100 yards to go but the son of Wilson Wyoming never stopped his dogged pursuit of the favorite and finally got by him at the wire with an eye catching 27.1 final split. The victory was the second in four career starts for aptly named Spirit Lifter.
Given a patient steer by regular pilot Brent Holland, the Ervin Miller-trained sophomore rallied from mid-pack just as she had done in her previous victory. The 1-5 favorite of the betting public methodically wore down a game Cole’s Amity Jane (Ryan Anderson) with a 28.2 final quarter to get the job done for her legion of backers.
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