Arlington Park news release
Contact: Brian W. Spencer
LUCKY SPEED LEADS ONE-TWO EURO PUNCH IN GRADE III AMERICAN ST. LEGER; MIZZ MONEY CASHES IN GRADE III PUCKER UP
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (August 15, 2015) – Stall Hornoldendorf’s Lucky Speed wound up turning for home and outkicked a gritty Panama Hat in the final yards to capture Saturday’s $350,000 Grade III American St. Leger at Arlington International Racecourse as part of the International Festival of Racing featuring the Arlington Million presented by LiftMaster.
Ridden by Andrasch Starke, the 5-year-old son of 2001 Arlington Million winner Silvano sat midpack off early splits of 24.15, 48.70, 1:12.38, and 1:38.15 before edging clear in the final furlong to post a 3/4-length win, completing the 1 11/16 miles on turf in 2:46.50. The Peter Schiergen trainee won for the fourth time in ten career starts and the $203,700 winner’s share boosted his career earnings just shy of $700,000, returning $8.00, $4.80 and $3.20.
“We knew he needed more distance and that’s what he got today in the American St. Leger,” said Starke. “He can handle the American track very well. I am so happy this is my first win in the United States and to win the St. Leger is amazing. It was the right conditions to bring him over here and I’m very happy.”
Team Valor International’s Panama Hat raced freely just off the speed throughout, took the lead turning for home but was unable to withstand the winner’s late punch, finishing a clear second for trainer Andy Oliver, returning $8.20 and $4.00. The distance-relishing 4-year-old son of Medicean showed determination in his losing effort and pleased his rider with his performance.
“We had a lovely smooth trip all the way around and he kicked off the turn,” said jockey Chris Hayes. “I probably just met a good one on the day.”
Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey’s Hyper, the 2-1 race favorite under jockey Irad Ortiz, settled further off the pace than the top pair and commenced a rally off the last of three turns, but the Chad Brown trainee was unable to seriously threaten the race’s two Europeans, crossing the wire third and returning $2.60.
Roman Approval, Az Ridge, Xtra Luck, Crucero, Highball and Alpha Kitalpha completed the order of finish.
Earlier in the day, Mizz Money pressed the pace and spurted away late to win the $100,000 Grade III Pucker Up Stakes on Saturday at Arlington International Racecourse and deliver trainer Patti Miller her first graded stakes win. Miller had taken over training from Bernie Flint, who co-owns and co-bred the three-year-old Mizzen Mast filly with Ron Hillerich’s Hillerich Racing.
Under Robby Albarado, Mizz Money tracked Unbridled Courage early, made the lead on the far turn, and held off a late charge from Return to Grace to win the first of five graded stakes on the card. She paid $30 as the 14-to-1 fifth choice.
Prado’s Sweet Ride, America Mon Amie, Walking the Kitten, 11-to-10 favorite Miss Chatelaine, Urtheoneeyelove, Giant Deduction, Unbridled Courage, and Ahh Chocolate completed the order of finish.
Arlington International Racecourse – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 77-day meet in 2015 from Friday, May 1 through Saturday, Sept. 26. Arlington International Racecourse, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates ten off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities in Arlington Heights, Aurora, Chicago, Waukegan, Villa Park, Rockford, South Elgin, Hodgkins, McHenry and Orland Hills. Arlington International Racecourse is a proud member of America’s Best Racing. Information on Arlington International Racecourse and Trackside OTB can be found online at www.arlingtonpark.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/arlingtonpark and www.facebook.com/tracksideotb, and on Twitter at @Arlington_Park for the latest happenings, @arlingtonracing for the latest racing news and @tracksideotb for all things pertaining to off-track wagering.