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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Balmoral Park (6/16/08)
Contact: Tom Kelley
FOX VALLEY SAPHRON IMPRESSIVE IN MINI ME STAKES WIN
After a big win in his debut, Cynthia Kay Willis and Sawgrass Farms' Fox Valley Saphron was dispatched as the heavy 3-5 choice in the race by the betting public. The $10,000 yearling purchase did not disappoint his legion of backers as he rolled to an impressive 1 ¼ length victory in a national season's mark for a two-year-old gelding pacer of 1:54.2.
Electing to keep his charge in mid-pack driver, Mike Oosting had Fox Valley Saphron positioned in fifth as Mr. Rightnow (Kelcey Perrymond) and Bobcat Banks (Dale Hiteman) traded turns on the lead through splits of 28.1, 56.4 & 1:26.3.
Midway around the final bend Oosting moved the son of Incredible Finale first over, and the Nelson Willis trainee looked fit and fresh while moving up to third as the field turned for home.
With the leaders squarely in his sights, Fox Valley Saphron then uncorked a 27.2 final quarter as he blew by the top pair to win for the second time in as many starts. Fox Valley Lector (Ronnie Gillespie) turned a ground saving journey into a second place check while Bobcat Banks held on for third.
Under the guidance of veteran conditioner Nelson Willis, this Land of Lincoln Sale purchase – who was coupled in the wagering with Syncro Hotspur (4th) – returned $3.40, $2.20 & $2.10.
In the Billings Amateur Drivers race which was contested earlier in the evening, Stephen Oldford guided the 12-year-old trotter Eng-Amer Bobby to a 2 ½ length triumph in 1:58.4. Easy Chaser (Robert Miller) was second while Solo Status (Dale Zahn) was third.
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