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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Balmoral Park (9/20/08)
Contact: Tom Kelley
The Stars come out on Super Night
In the Su Mac Lad, Maxter took the lead at the start from the rail and never relinquished, holding off a mild bid from Chip Marshall (Andy Miller). Our Priority (Sam Widger) came on in the lane to nab third-place honors.
"Of course I'm very happy with Maxter's performance, he always steps up to the plate and just looked very strong tonight," Welch said.
Maxter now has 13 wins in 18 seasonal starts and pushed his 2008 earnings to $217,635 for owners Turndorf Racing of California.
$120,000 Lady Ann Reed 3-Year-Old Filly Trot
In a striking upset Jamaica Patton steered longshot My Birthday to a 1:57.2 victory in the $120,000 Lady Ann Reed. The sophomore daughter by Smokey Legend notched her fourth win of the year in 17 starts for owner Herman Wheeler of Monroe, LA.
"This is a dream come true," said Patton in the winner's circle. "We've been working with this filly all year long and always believed in her ability."
My Birthday finished fifth in her Lady Ann Reed elimination, thus grabbing a starting berth for herself in the final. To date this season she's earned $78,120 for these connections.
$125,000 Ann Vonian Championship
Martha Maxine scored her tenth consecutive victory by capturing the $125,000 Ann Vonian with Andy Miller at the lines easily by two lengths over her rivals in 1:50.1. Trained by Erv Miller, the 4-year-old Park Place mare pushed her seasonal earnings to $181,535 with the victory, her 13th of the year in 19 trips postward.
"We bought this filly earlier in this year and found out she had a throat problem. We had surgery performed and ever since she's been tremendous," trainer Erv Miller noted. "It's great to win races with a horse like this who can come first over, endure a tough trip and just keep on truckin."
Martha Maxine is owned by the Erv Miller Stable, Tony Alagna and the Brittany Farms, who purchased the mare May 26, 2008. Her time was just a tick off the record set by another Miller trainee-the outstanding mare Loyal Opposition.
Bobs Minute Maid (Mike Oosting) got up for second, while Faith Leigh (Brent Holland) nailed down show honors.
$260,000 Orange & Blue Filly Championship
Fox Valley Topaz set a new track record en route to winning the $260,000 Orange & Blue Filly Championship for 2-year-old pacing fillies. Steered by Mike Oosting for trainer Ken Rucker, the daughter of Sportsmaster stopped the timer in 1:52.2, also a new stakes record.
An enthusiast Marty Engel, who owns the filly in partnership with Rucker, said he was glad to be part of the Illinois program.
"Illinois has a great program for our state-bred horses," Engel noted. "There's no better thrill than buying a yearling at a sale or raising a baby and then having them win a Super Night event. That's what makes racing in Illinois so superior."
Fox Valley Topaz pushed her seasonal earnings to $212,575 with the win, her seventh in nine tries. Fox Valley Tyra (Sam Widger) finished second, while Fox Valley Absolut (Tim Tetrick) was third.
$200,000 Grandma Ann Championship
Dave Magee brought home 19-1 longshot Townes Party Girl in 1:51.4 to win the $200,000 Grandma Ann Championship. The daughter of Ideal Towne notched her fifth win of the season in 18 trips postward for trainer Nelson Willis and the partnership of R. Elmore, R. and J. Esposito, and J. Kinkaid.
"This filly really impressed me in her elimination," said Magee. "I thought she had a good shot in here if the trip worked out her way, and ultimately, that's what happened."
Townes Party Girl added the winner's share of $89,000 to her seasonal bankroll of $41,747 and pushed her career earnings to $139,479. The victory was the seventh of her career. Kennans Kelli was a fast-closing second for driver Mike Oosting while Andy Miller reined Kelly's Keepsake to a third-place finish.
$125,000 Tony Maurello Championship
Booze Cruzin and driver Sam Widger put away their rivals in a courageous 1:49.2 victory in the $125,000 Tony Maurello Championship-the fastest time ever in the history of Super Night. Trained by Joe Seekman for the Broekhuis Stable of Michigan, the 4-year-old is an altered son of Art's Conquest. Thisbigdogwilfight (Dave Magee) was a gallant second while Fox Valley Tribal (Andy Miller) was third.
Booze Cruzin upped his seasonal earnings to $187,426, making this win his sixth of the year in 24 tries. The winning mile was only the second sub-1:50 mile in Super Night history-the first came in 2005 when Loyal Opposition paced in 1:49.4.
"Booze Cruzin never ceases to amaze me," said Widger. "He shows up week after week and always is ready to get a great effort."
Booze Cruzin pushed his career earnings to $577,214 with his 18th win in 63 lifetime starts.
$165,000 Langley Memorial
Mucho Sleazy romped to a front-stepping 1:50 victory for driver Mike Oosting in the $165,000 Langley Memorial for 3-year-old pacing colts. The son of Sportsmaster paced gamely all the way to the wire, holding off late challenges by Jolly Lester (second for Dale Hiteman) and Lets Getit Started (third for Sam Widger).
The win was the seventh of the year in 18 tries for blue-hooded Mucho Sleazy and pushed his seasonal earnings to $412,825 and his lifetime winnings to $593,370.
Mucho Sleazy's win also gave the Engle-Rucker team their first Super Night victories, and gave driver Mike Oosting his third career Super Night driving crown.
$280,000 Orange & Blue Colt Pace
Favorite Enzo The Baker capped off Super Night by winning the $280,000 Orange & Blue Colt Championship in 1:52.1 with driver Dave Magee at the lines. The Cole Muffler gelding added $124,600 to his career earnings of $39,090 for trainer Dave McCaffrey and owners Scurto Stable, A & M Somone and L Johnson of Illinois.
"This has been a great thrill for us," said winning co-owner Joe Scurto. "We owe a lot to trainer Dave McCaffrey for keeping this horse together for us throughout the season. This is why we're in this business, to own a horse that can win a Super Night championship."
The win was the fifth of seven lifetime starts for Enzo The Baker, and gave Magee his 26th Super Night Championship drive. Grandma Jan's Max (Brent Holland) was a fast-closing second, while Successfully Rich (Tim Tetrick) nabbed show honors.
For more information call (708) 672-1414 or visit www.balmoralpark.com.
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