Hawthorne Racecourse (11/10/11)
Contact: Jim Miller
Jockey and trainer updates at Hawthorne
A chilly, but sunny day here at Hawthorne as we return for a nine-race card. While the two turf sprints have been moved to the main track, we are fast on the main track. There is still a slight breeze, but nothing near what we had yesterday. Looking back at the Wednesday card, I give a lot of credit to these riders for dealing with very tough racing conditions. For these athletes, they are asked to balance on two-inch wide pieces of metal while riding a 1,200 lbs. athlete going 35 MPH while guiding the Thoroughbred between horses and giving their best effort to win. Add in rain and strong winds, and the rider’s job is made that much tougher. But to the credit of our riders at Hawthorne, they dealt extremely well with the conditions for a fine day of racing on Wednesday.
For the Wednesday card, front running horses faired well, but some runners were able to close some ground. On Wednesday, three riders had riding doubles as Tim Thornton, Israel Ocampo and Julio Felix each won a pair of races. While jockey Florent Geroux continues his fine meet, his gap in the rider standings has closed. Entering today, Geroux has won 34 races to lead the standings with Thornton making a strong move into second with 30 wins. Jockey Julio Felix has come on strong of late as well, taking over the third spot in the standings with 22 victories.
Trainer Roger Brueggemann still holds a sizeable lead on the training end as he enters today with 22 wins, 11 better than Joel Berndt and 12 more than Chris Block. Midwest Thoroughbreds are still atop the leading owner standings with 13 wins, but Arlington Park champion owner William Stiritz has made a move into a closer second with 7 wins on the meet.
Looking ahead to the weekend, we have a few things taking place at Hawthorne as we salute our Veterans on Saturday, November 12. On that day, all vets or active duty military members will receive free admission, free program and free lunch at Hawthorne. Also, on Saturday, Joe Kristufek will be on site to host a pool party and online chat through HorseplayerNow.com. Joe and I will be covering the races from Hawthorne and give selections throughout the day as we begin our weekly chat sessions which will take place every Saturday and Sunday.
We are off the turf today but there is a shot that we may return to grass racing tomorrow. Here’s the early changes for the 9-race card.
Main Track – Fast
Off the turf
Race 2 – Off turf – 5 furlongs main track
Scratch #8 – Feisty Love
Scratch #1 – Sligo Breeze
Scratch #6 – Expensive Date
Scratch #4 – Mad Mercer
Scratch #3 – Rochelle Rochelle
Scratch #6 – Songanddancelady
Race 6 – Off turf – 5 furlongs main track
Scratch #3 – Stone Free
Scratch #6 – Party of Eight
Scratch #7 – Beautiful Bliss
Scratch #9 – Grand Symphony
Scratch #13 – Ocean Surge