Maywood Park (5/1/10)
Contact: Tom Kelley
DELCO WILLOBEE SCORES AGAIN
After taking the Sportsmaster stake in his first start of the year, Jesse De Long’s Delco Willobee figured to be an overwhelming choice in Friday’s $14,000 Taser Gun Stake at Maywood. Bet down to 4-5, the son of Ft. Apache Hanover did not disappoint his backers, but the victory was not without its anxious moments as Delco Willobee rolled to a one-length victory in 1:56.4 over a rain-slickened oval.
|Delco Willobee and driver John De Long overcame a miscue on the backstretch to win Friday's $14,000 Taser Gun Stake.|
After getting away fifth as Apache Renegade (Todd Warren) and Southern Sport (Marcus Miller) battled through an opening quarter in 29.1, driver John De Long sent Delco Willobee on his way while first over.
Working his way up to the pace setting Southern Sport, Delco Willobee was just 1 ¾ behind the pace setter as they rolled by the half-mile mark in 59.3.
Collaring the leader as the field headed onto the backstretch for the final time, Delco Willobee momentarily went off stride throwing a big scare into his legion of backers.
“The track was in pretty bad shape from all that rain that hit earlier in the night,” said winning driver John De Long. “Just as we were about to cross over in front of Southern Sport my horse stepped in a hole. Fortunately he caught right back very quickly and then went on about his business.”
Undeterred by the backside miscue, Delco Willobee proceeded to pace by Southern Sport as the field moved past the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:28.3.
Looking like a seasoned veteran despite having just 14 career starts, Delco Willobee then began to draw away from the early pacesetter with a sharp 28.1 final quarter to seal the victory. Southern Sport held on for second while NJ’s Super Charger (Dean Magee) was third.
After the race De Long was beaming about his star pupil in the winner’s circle.
“I was pretty impressed with him the first time because I never touched him and he won easily,” said De Long. “But this was even more impressive because of the adversity he overcame after the problem on the backstretch. He also paced a back half in 57 and change over a bad track tonight and once again I never even had to get after him.”
With the win Delco Willobee now sports a career record of nine victories and three seconds in 14 starts with earnings of $24,040.
Post time every Thursday and Friday at Maywood Park is 7:10 pm (central). For more information visit www.maywoodpark.com or call (708) 343-4800.