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Hawthorne Race Course

Hawthorne Racecourse (3/13/13)

Contact: John Walsh, 708-222-3342
Savannah Short, 859-298-0003


Rescue me Racing LLCís Magna Fortuna, alias Taxi (because he was born on April 15) cruised to an easy maiden victory in his third career start. A horse breaking his maiden isnít necessarily big news but, in the case of Magna Fortuna, it is.

Taxi is the son of Silver Option, a lightly raced mare who was rescued from an auction from which many horses are sent to slaughter. Purchased for the paltry sum of $300 by Gail Vacca, founder and president of Illinois Equine Humane Center (, who frequents these auctions looking for Thoroughbreds who arenít supposed to be there, Gail took the mare home, not really knowing what she was going to do with her or if the mare would even survive.

Survive she did and Vacca later learned the mare was in foal.

Magna Fortuna was born on April 15, 2010.

Thereís plenty more to the background story but, for the short version, Magna Fortuna broke his maiden in his third start, his first around two turns, for trainer Michele Boyce, and he did it impressively, winning by nine and three-quarter lengths, leading virtually every step of the way with Julio Felix in the irons.

His sire is Magna Graduate, a $2.58 million career stakes winner, so his future is promising.

The winnerís circle was filled with Taxi fans and smiles and tears were plentiful.

There have been many articles and stories about Magna Fortuna (Google works wonders) and, if he continues to run the way he did, there will be plenty more.


Hawthorne Race Course has been Chicago's "hometown track" for 122 years and currently offers the only traditional dirt racing for Thoroughbreds in northern Illinois. Hawthorne's spring meet opens February 15 and runs through April. Live racing is hosted Friday through Sunday in February and Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday in March and April. Daily post time is 1:35 pm, and admission costs $4. The historic track is located a half-mile north of I-55 on Cicero Avenue, and 2 miles south of I-290 on Laramie Avenue at 35th Street. For more information visit or call Guest Services at 708-780-3733. Fans are welcome at and for up-to-the-minute racing tips become a follower at

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