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Balmoral Park

Balmoral Park (10/14/08)

Contact: Tom Kelley
(708) 672-1414


Southern Rocketop
Southern Rocketop and driver Brian Carpenter racked up yet another win as they captured Tuesday's Cardinal Stake by two-lengths in 1:55.1.
State-bred trotting colts were back in the spotlight on Tuesday night as a field of nine two-year-old colts and geldings slugged it out in the $47,850 Cardinal Stake. Had this been a prize fight it would have been stopped early on as the heavyweight champ of the division, Southern Rocketop, knocked out yet another field with an easy two-length triumph in 1:55.1.

Speeding away from the outside post for driver Brian Carpenter, this son of Psychic Spirit-Summer In The City had no trouble gaining control of the situation as he led the field through splits of 28.1, 57.3 & 1:25.3.

“Early in his career I would have been worried with an outside post,” said Carpenter. “Now nothing seems to bother him, as you saw tonight when that horse down at the inside made a break (#1-Justa Rebel) and starting acting up pretty badly.”

Unlike his previous win in the Lincoln Land, where he opened up a 12-length lead as the field turned for home, the Monique Bernardi-trained gelding led the pocket sitting Definer (Tyler Buter) by just two lengths as the field straightened for the money.

“Even though we were not able to sprint away from the field this week, things were going just as I thought they would,” explained the winning pilot. “He was very relaxed again and I knew I still had plenty of horse left when we hit the top of the turn.”

Holding his chief rival at bay with minimal urging from his pilot, Southern Rocketop was never seriously threatened as he coasted under the wire with his fourth straight victory and his ninth triumph of the year. Definer continued a fine season with a nice second place finish while Be Bullish (Homer Hochstetler) was third.

The reigning king of the division now boasts a record of nine wins and one second in 13 starts with earnings of $154,105 this year for proud owner Claude Powers of Winchester, Tennessee. Backed to the near exclusion of his eight rivals, Southern Rocketop returned $2.20, $2.10 & $2.10.

According to trainer Monique Bernardi, the next engagement for Southern Rocketop is the Sarah Myers Stake here at Balmoral on Oct. 26. “He’ll go against Illinois breds again and then it looks like we’ll supplement him to the Hanover Stake (Nov. 2) here at Balmoral,” said the proud conditioner. “After that he could be headed out of town if he races well against those open horses.”

For more information call (708) 672-1414 or visit




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