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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Arlington Park Barn Notes (7/1/09)
Contact: Graham Ross
In today's notes:
Veteran Illinois-based reinsman Randy Meier, who became a regular on the local circuit in 1981, joined Shane Sellers in a tie for 10th position in Arlington’s all-time leading rider list when he guided Richard Glander’s Double Silver to an upset three quarter-length tally in Sunday’s fourth race.
Double Silver, an Honour and Glory colt trained by Monique Cameron, was making the first start of his career and paid a $49.20 straight mutuel.
Meier, a native of West Point, Nebraska, who will celebrate his 55th birthday later this month, and Sellers, 42, born in Erath, Louisiana, who will return to riding Thursday at Evangeline Downs after a 4 1/2-year retirement, are both credited with 659 career wins at Arlington.
However, hot on their heels for a Top Ten ranking among Arlington’s all-time leading riders is E. T. Baird, who entered Wednesday’s racing program at Arlington as the meeting’s leading rider with 39 wins – two of which came with Baird’s riding double Sunday.
Baird, 42, born in Chicago, won Sunday’s opener with Richard Ravin’s R Rich E. Rich for trainer Larry Rivelli and returned to the winner’s circle after the sixth aboard Frank Calabrese’s Snowblind Friend for conditioner Nick Canani.
Entering Wednesday’s program, Baird was credited with 642 wins for his own Arlington career which began in 1986 shortly before he switched his tack to New York to become New York’s leading apprentice that year.
Baird is the son of the late Bobby Baird, a longtime Illinois-based reinsman, while Meier is the father of Brandon Meier, currently Arlington’s leading apprentice rider this summer and winner of Arlington’s Rising Star award last year.
Sellers, who won Arlington riding titles in 1991 and 1993, also set a single season record of 219 wins locally in 1991 which still stands. Interestingly, the first horse Sellers will ride in his Thursday comeback will be for trainer Mark Guidry, who is fourth on Arlington’s all-time leading rider list.
Arlington racing fans and fireworks fans are reminded that there will be a special 4 pm post time this Friday for the combined America’s Birthday Racing/Fireworks spectacular.
Music will be part of the entire holiday weekend, beginning Friday at the Miller Lite Party in the Park with live music by “Four Man Band” – the band that knows all the classics.
On Saturday, the Miller Lite Taste of Summer in the Park Area will feature the acoustic driven rock of “Dave Tamkin & Company,” and on Sunday the band “The Fairlanes” will play classic rock on the Miller Lite Band Stage.
Also slated Friday will be a “Learn to Win” handicapping seminar featuring Joe Kristufek, conducted from 4 pm to 5 pm in the West Kiosk and 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm at the East Kiosk/Park.
On Sunday, Arlington Park will honor Hall of Fame jockey Earlie Fires, who retired at the end of the 2008 Arlington season as Arlington’s all-time leading rider with 2,886 wins at the local oval.
Sunday will feature a special Earlie Fires Commemorative Print giveaway to the first 2,500 fans to purchase tickets online.
Fires and the artist will be available in the Paddock form 12:30 pm until 1:15 pm to sign the print.
Sunday is also Family Day at Arlington, featuring pony rides and a petting zoo. This week’s Family Day theme is sponsored by the Chicago Fire soccer team.
Also on Sunday, Junior Jockey Club members will get a tour of the Paddock and members will meet at Noon in the Paddock.
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