Balmoral Park (9/16/10)
Contact: Tom Kelley
Star-Studded Cast Assembled for Maurello Championship
A field of 10 of the top older pacers in the Prairie State will slug it out in Saturday's $115,000 Tony Maurello Stake. Named in honor of Mr. Super Night himself, these veterans bring a combined bankroll of nearly $3.2 million into Saturday evening's contest.
|Mucho Sleazy winning last year's Tony Maurello Stake.|
Engel Stables' Mucho Sleazy was a game winner in his elimination last week and the defending champion in this event will be looking for his third Super Night title in a row.
"Last year's victory came over many of these same horses and it was really something to see," commented trainer Paul Stafford. "Despite having the 10-hole and still being seventh when they turned for home he managed to get there in the final strides to beat the heavy favorite (Martha Maxine) that night."
With 90 lifetime starts and a record of 20-20-13, this five-year-old son of Sportsmaster is the leading money winner in the field with earnings of $890,296.
Rosebud Stable and Michael McNeely's Thisbigdogwilfight always lives up to his name and this seven-year-old gelding figures to be in the thick of things every step of the way tonight. Sporting a record of 10 wins, one second and three thirds in 16 starts this year, the Jim Eaton-trained son of The Big Dog has shown no signs of slowing down as he's put up a sub-1:50 mark in each of his last three seasons and now boasts 45 career victories.
"Each time this horse sets foot on the track you can just see how much he loves to race," said driver Todd Warren, who has been handling the driving duties of late. "He's as strong as a bull and if he gets to the front and gets a little breather anywhere along the way, he's awfully tough to catch no matter who's chasing him."
Booze Cruzin captured this event back in 2008 and the pride of trainer Joe Seekman and the Broekhuis Stables still owns the stakes record of 1:49.2 for this race.
Splitting time between Illinois and several east coast tracks over the past few seasons, the six-year-old son of Art's Conquest has racked up 29 victories and $793,779 in earnings during his illustrious career.
Saturday’s Super Night card will have a special post time of 7:00 pm. Tickets are available for Illinois’ biggest night of racing by calling (708) 672-1414 or by visiting www.balmoralpark.com.