Balmoral Park (10/22/12)
Contact: Tom Kelley
ICF STAKES ACTION DOMINATES SUNDAY CARD
State-bred trotters and pacers shared the spotlight on Sunday, October 21 at Balmoral Park as a trio of stakes events provided plenty of action from start to finish on the 11-race program.
|Little Ms Chrissy|
The action kicked off with a non-wagering event prior to the start of the regularly scheduled card as a field of 10 two-year-old trotting fillies squared off in a $10,000 Violet Stake elimination. The top nine finishers will return next week along with division leader Trot Fudge Sundae for the $46,500 final.
Proving once again that she will be a formidable challenger for the top filly in next week’s final Robert and Donnie Taylor’s Little Ms Chrissy overpowered nine rivals on Sunday night, cruising to a 3 ¼ length victory in 2:00.3 for driver-trainer Robert Taylor.
Sent to the top after watching Fox Valley Natasha (Ronnie Gillespie) lead the field through an opening quarter in 30.0, Taylor had the daughter of Southwind Breeze-Fox Valley Shiraz on the point through middle splits of 1:00.2 and 1:30.2.
After turning away a challenge from a first over Sara The Spy (Mike Oosting), Little Ms Chrissy then proceeded to step away from her opponents with a 29.3 final quarter to record her sixth win in 10 career starts. Divination (Marcus Miller) turned a ground saving trip into a second place finish while Powerful Goddess (Mike Cox) was third. Also gaining spots in the final were Sara The Spy, Fox Valley Natasha, Elegant Rosie, Close Call Emotion and Just For Fun.
Sophomore trotters were next on the docket as a compact field of six diagonally gaited three-year-old colts were sent to battle in the $12,600 Betzotic Stake.
This test looked more like a stroll in the park for Fox Valley Standardbreds and Harold & Joshua Carter’s Vaporstar as he zipped right to the front and proceeded to make every call a winning one as he reported home with a 2 ½ length score in 1:57.1 for driver Dave Magee.
Hustled away from post position three, the gelded son of Vaporize-Starlicious led the field through splits of 29.2, 59.3 and 1:27.4 while under no pressure at all. The Mike Brink trainee then opened up a three-length lead by the mid-stretch call and the issue was never in doubt from there as Vaporstar rolled under the wire with his fifth win in 12 starts this season. Fox Valley Steffen (Dale Hiteman) finished second while Diamond Joe (John De Long) finished a distant third, seven lengths behind the winner. Heavily favored Riccolo struggled right from the start and wound up last in the field, 27 lengths behind the winner.
With the win Vaporstar now boasts a record of 8-5-4 in 21 lifetime starts with earnings of $192,271.
The final stakes battle of the night featured a field of 10 two-year-old pacing fillies battling in the $13,000 Beecher Stake.
Once again John Carver’s Auniqueaquistion proved that she’s one of the top fillies in the division as she overcame a tough trip to win by a widening 1 ¼ lengths in 1:55.2 for driver Mike Oosting.
Sent right to the front from post position seven, the daughter of Cole Muffler-Shessoluvabull was parked through an opening quarter of 29.1.
Continuing to show the way by the half-mile mark in a brisk 57.3, Oosting then elected to give his filly a break letting a hard charging Fox Valley Ruby (Casey Leonard) take control as she led the field by the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:26.1.
Patiently waiting for racing room as Fox Valley Ruby and The Bruzilian Blur (Brian Carpenter) battled through the lane, Oosting then maneuvered Auniqueaquistion into the passing lane where she collared The Bruzilian Blur in the closing yards for her fourth win in seven career starts. The Bruzilian Blur was a hard fought second while Thank You Doc (Marcus Miller) rallied for the show dough.
Sent off as the 3-5 favorite in the field, Auniqueaquistion now boasts four wins and two seconds with earnings of just over $78,000 while under the watchful eye of conditioner Donna Lee Ozment.
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.