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HAWTHORNE RACE COURSE

Hawthorne Racecourse (4/3/04)

Contact: Jim Miller
(708) 780-3700

Prevalent Remains Undefeated With Meafara Win at Hawthorne

STICKNEY, IL -- A field of seven three-year-old fillies lined up to sprint in the $42,800 Meafara Stakes at Hawthorne on Saturday.

Breaking from the gate it was four runners that broke sharply but Road to Mandalay was quickest of all to the front. Covering the opening quarter in :21.58 and the half in :45.62, Road to Mandalay gave in to stalkers Prevalent and Clever Maid. Late in the lane it was down to these two as 3/2 favorite Prevalent and jockey Rafael Bejarano had edged clear. Stopping the timer in 1:11.98, it turned out to be a Bernie Flint top three as Prevalent held off Clever Maid by a half-length while Stoneway closed late to finish third.

Owned by Thomas F. Conway and Ronald Hillerich, Prevalent earned $25,600 for the victory, boosting her career earnings to $59,180. With this victory she is three for three on her career. Prevalent returned $5.00, $2.80 and $2.60. Clever Maid came back $3.20 and $3.40.

According to trainer Bernard Flint, "I really wasn't going to bring this filly because she is coming off knee surgery but it looked like the field was going to come up short so I figured we would give it a try. I wasn't sure she was fit enough. Obviously she likes to win. She is undefeated thus far. We had her training in Hot Springs this winter so she didn't miss much. I thought Clever Maid might win because she is a bit more fit. All three of my fillies ran super, however."

Rafael Bejarano, rider of 1st place finisher Prevalent, was elated by the filly's winning effort. "My horse is a nice horse. She has good speed but I was looking at the other horses in the race and most of them had speed so I decided to take her a little off the pace. We did stay close and as I watched them tire a little bit we started closing the gap. This was the first time she came from off the pace but I wasn't worried because she is such a good filly. I think the next time she will win easier. "

Chris Emigh rider of 2nd place finisher Clever Maid was happy enough with the effort of Clever Maid but thought he was going to win it. "If it wasn't for Bernie's other horse we would have won the race. I was trying not to hook her early and I ended up giving her too much of a breather. My horse got a little tired but she still ran a big race. I can't complain, I thought I had her but the wind knocked us sideways turning for home."

Eibar Coa rider of 3rd place finisher Stoneway: "I really don't have an excuse. My filly broke good and I had her in a good position but when I asked her she didn't have anything. I really felt the best horse won the race. She looked like the best horse in the paddock and she showed she was the best in the race.

The $2 6-1 Exacta paid $14.40 while the $2 6-1-3 Trifecta brought back $89.80.

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