Hawthorne Racecourse (3/28/10)
Contact: Jim Miller
Sunday racing starts at Hawthorne
Today is the first Sunday card of the meet, as we are now into our five-day racing weeks. After next Sunday (which we are off for Easter), we will run the following three Sundays in April, the 11th, 18th, and 25th. The rain stayed south of us overnight and aside from a slight drizzle early, we received no precipitation as we have a fast main track for the nine-race card.
Looking back at Saturday, jockey Brandon Meier had a riding double and it was also a solid day for trainer Chris Dorris. Dorris sent out two winners on the card, a pair of second place finishers and a pair of third place finishers from the nine races. The solid day has Dorris in second place in the trainer standings with 18 wins, six behind Frank Kirby and three wins ahead of Roger Brueggemann. On the meet, Dorris runners have been hitting the board at a 58 percent clip.
Looking at the leading rider standings, Tanner Riggs continues to hold his lead as he has ridden home 29 winners on the meet. He is currently 5 ahead of Tim Thornton and 7 in front of Eddie Perez. The owner race is very tight as well as Chris Dorris is tied for the lead with Frank Kirby’s Hondo Ranch, Inc with 7 victories. They are a win in front of Eagle Valley Farm and Larry Rivelli. Jungle Heart, ridden by Riggs, became the first three-time winner of the meet as he ran away from the field after a poor start to win yesterday’s fourth race.
We are less than a week from Illinois Derby as we will draw the Illinois Derby card on Tuesday morning. Joining the Grade III $500,000 Derby will be the inaugural Cryptoclearance Stakes for older runners around two turns. We are looking are tremendous weather all next week and expect a great weekend of racing ahead.
Main Track – Fast
Scratch #6 – Bristol Boy
Scratch #4 – Alone at Last
Scratch #1a – Airtight
Scratch #1 – Bringing Heat
Race 3 - #2 – Bearific – This is a runner who is taking a class drop after coming out of a very tough starter race in his last where he held his own. This field looks to have enough pace to the outside that he should be able to tuck in behind the leaders and track them the entire way around. Riggs has been solid in the saddle all meet and I expect a good effort today for the second back off the layoff.
Race 4 - #3 – Spy Hunter – A horse that scratched from a likely tougher spot yesterday for today’s race and this race suits him perfectly. He sat back against these in his last, only to come flying in the lane and come up a little short in the end. He looks to get enough pace to chase again and while we won’t see the 10-1 we got last out, 4-1 is not unimaginable.