Balmoral Park (8/25/11)
Contact: Tom Kelley
SOPHOMORE TROTTERS MEET IN A PAIR OF AMERICAN NATIONALS
The 2011 American National Stake season kicks off on Saturday night at Balmoral Park with a pair of trotting events for diagonally gaited three-year-olds. A total of 10 sophomore fillies, led by millionaire Crys Dream, will battle for a purse of $121,500 in race four on the card while seven of their male counterparts, led by New Jersey Sire Stake winner Whit, will slug it out for a purse of $113,000 in race five.
|Crys Dream photo courtesy New Image Media Photo|
Installed as the 6-5 morning line favorite in race four, Reve Avec Moi Dreamwithme, Deo Volente Farms, TLP Stables and Jerry Silva’s Crys Dream will be the one to beat in the filly tussle. The daughter of Taurus Dream-Crysta’s Image checks into Balmoral off a disappointing third-place finish as the 2-5 favorite in the Hambletonian Oaks last time out. That was this classy filly’s first loss in six starts this season and she was victimized by a tough trip that day however. The winner of this year’s Elegant Image & Casual Breeze Stakes at Mohawk this season flaunts a career record of 12 wins and one third in 14 career starts with earnings of $1,031,740. Trainer Jean Dubois is scheduled to drive and the pair will start from post position seven.
Other top contenders in the field include Hambo Oaks runner-up Lady Rainbow (pp. 9); Iron Lady (pp. 1), another Dubois trainee who finished a tough luck sixth in the Oaks after winning her elimination; and Wincinnatti (pp.2) a New Jersey Sire Stake winner who finished seventh in the Hambo Oaks.
Although attracting only a field of seven, the $113,000 colt division looks to be a toss-up among several good looking sophomores.
Local conditioner Homer Hochstetler brings Whit back to Crete after a sharp second place finish in a New Jersey Sire Stake last time out. After going winless in 11 starts as a two-year-old, the son of Classic Photo-Woman Of Strength has enjoyed a big second season of racing posting three wins, three seconds and one third in 13 starts while earning almost $106,000 for Hochstetler and partner Robert Buddig. Installed as the 2-1 favorite, Whit has drawn post position two for Saturday’s tussle.
Another to keep a close eye on in here is the 3-1 second choice Swan In A Million, who checks into Balmoral off a career best in a Review Stake at Springfield for trainer Ervin Miller. The royally bred son of Andover Hall-Swan Lake went wire to wire that day while stopping the clock in 1:55.2. Sporting a career record of 4-4-1 in 13 starts, Swan In A Million boasts $123,587 in earnings for the partnership of Diamond Creek Farms, Mark Anderson and Mystical Marker Farms. Swan In A Million will leave from post position six.
Others who merit serious consideration include multiple stakes winner Ax Man, whose two-year-old mark came here at Balmoral Park; and state-bred standouts Audition, a winner of nearly $200,000 and GJ Photo Victory, who is fresh off a lifetime best of 1:53.0 while romping to an 11-length victory in the State Fair Stake in Springfield.
For more information visit www.balmoralpark.com or call (708) 672-1414.
About Balmoral Park: Located in Crete, IL just 12 miles south of 80/94; Balmoral Park has been one of the nation's premier horse racing facilities since 1926. Balmoral Park features live racing every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Admission and parking is always free.