Arlington Park Stakes Advance: Grade III Chicago Handicap
Contact: David Zenner
BREEDERS’ CUP CHAMPION INFORMED DECISION SEEKS TITLE DEFENSE IN GRADE III CHICAGO HANDICAP SUNDAY
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (July 1, 2010) – Augustin Stable’s Informed Decision, winner of the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint last November, will be a prohibitive favorite when she seeks a repeat bid in the Grade III Chicago Handicap at Arlington Park on Sunday. The seven-furlong race over Polytrack is the July 4 holiday headliner at the suburban Chicago racecourse.
Since capturing last year’s Chicago Handicap in front-running style, the Jonathan Sheppard-trained distaffer dominated her division with scores in the $400,000 Presque Isle Downs Masters in Pennsylvania and the Grade II Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes at Keeneland before earning her biggest victory in last autumn’s Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita Park.
In two starts so far this year, she ran third in the Grade I Madison at Keeneland in April and third in the Grade I Humana Distaff at Churchill Downs on Kentucky Derby Day. Carrying high weight of 124, the daughter of Monarchos will be ridden by Julien Leparoux and will spot her seven rivals from six to 11 pounds.
Slated to line up against the favorite (with riders and weight assignment listed) are: Derby Daze Farm, Mark Hoffman & Earl Trostrud’s Hooh Why (Shane Sellers, 118 pounds); Team Block’s Never Retreat (Junior Alvarado, 115); Carl Pollard’s Minewander (Michael Baze, 115); Michael Stidham’s Secret Kin (E. T. Baird, 115); Jerry Jamgotchian’s Rinterval (Julio Felix, 115); Lael Stables’ Lookalike (James Graham, 114); and Charles Fipke’s Diamond Song (Chris Emigh, 113).
Grade I winner Hooh Why comes in off an uncharacteristic sixth-place finish in the $100,000 Satin N Lace at Presque Isle in her last start and before that the daughter of Cloud Hopping finished third in the $100,000 Illinois Owners Stakes over this course. As a sophomore last year, Hooh Why captured the Grade I Ashland at Keeneland. Mike Reavis is listed as trainer of the 4-year-old filly.
Arlington Park – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 91-day meet in 2010 from Thursday, April 29 through Sunday, Sept. 26. Arlington Park, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates 11 off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities: Trackside Arlington Park (Arlington Heights), Trackside Chicago, Trackside Quad City Downs (East Moline), Trackside Waukegan, Shooters Bar & Grill at Don Carter Lanes featuring Trackside Rockford, Fat Sam’s Bar & Grill featuring Trackside OTB in Lockport, Lucky’s featuring Trackside OTB in South Elgin, Nicolino’s featuring Trackside OTB in McHenry, Tad’s Sports Bar & Grill featuring Trackside OTB in South Beloit, Salerno-Pincente Ristorante featuring Trackside OTB in Hodgkins and Sundance Saloon featuring Trackside OTB in Waukegan. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at www.arlingtonpark.com.