Balmoral Park (5/13/13)
Contact: Tom Kelley
FILLIES SQUARE OFF IN VIOLET STAKE ELIMINATIONS
The countdown to the first major stake of the 2013 season for Illinois conceived and foaled three-year-old pacing fillies started on Sunday, May 12 as a total of 14 state-bred sophomores battled in a pair of $10,000 Violet Stake eliminations. The top five finishers in each division will be back for next Sunday’s $55,300 (est.) final.
|Dallas Jones (#1) held off the late bid of Auniqueaquistion to win the first of two Violet Stake eliminations on Sunday night at Balmoral Park.|
In the first division Paula Smith, James Runyan and Frank Pike’s Dallas Jones continued a big 2013 campaign as she “gutted out” a wire-to-wire nose decision in 1:55.0 for driver Casey Leonard.
Sent right to the front from the inside post, the daughter of Sportsmaster-Cams Bett was allowed to stroll through splits of 29.2, 59.2 and 1:28.0 while her six rivals elected to sit inside. With the field basically preparing for a quarter mile sprint home, the Joel Smith trainee dug in gamely as Auniqueaquistion (Mike Oosting) began to cut into the margin after a perfect pocket sitting trip. With those two drawing clear from the rest of the field a tough as nails Dallas Jones managed to keep a nose in front, forcing Auniqueaquistion to settle for the bridesmaid role in a big sophomore debut. Private Ashley (Kyle Husted) finished third, four lengths behind the top pair while Mystical Danica (Dave Magee) and Fox Valley Ruby (Dean Magee) picked up the two other starting spots in next week’s final.
The win was the sixth in 15 starts this year for Dallas Jones, who also has six seconds and one third to her credit with earnings of $37,307 in 2013.
The nightcap also provided another photo finish with Roy Drevs and Brett & Candice Wilfong’s Feel Like Dancing prevailing by a hard fought neck in 1:55.1 for driver Kyle Wilfong.
|Feel Like Dancing (#7) posted her third straight victory as she gamely held on to win by a neck in the second Violet Stake elimination on Sunday night.|
Zipped right to the top from the outside post in this field of seven, the daughter of Skydancer Hanover-Fox Valley Funny was parked through an opening quarter of 28.3. In control of the proceedings as the field moved down the backstretch, the Brett Wilfong-trained miss put the brakes on leading the field through pedestrian middle splits of 59.2 and 1:28.0. Moving through the stretch Feel Like Dancing continued to show the way, but a hard charging Aliyah Maria (Todd Warren) was starting to cut into the leader’s advantage. With those two hooked up in a thrilling duel through the final sixteenth of a mile, Feel Like Dancing gamely kept a neck in front for her third straight victory here at Balmoral. Aliyah Maria was a hard fought second while the My Marisa Clair (Phil Knox) used a ground saving trip to earn the show dough. The last two spots in next week’s final went to Incredible Filly (Dave Magee) and Thank You Doc (Dean Magee).
Fresh off a win in last week’s Betzotic Stake here at Balmoral Feel Like Dancing, who made only one start as a two-year-old, now sports a record of five wins and two seconds in seven starts this year with earnings of $24,383.
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.