OTBO SALE PURCHASE CAPTURES LOYALTY STAKES – CIRCUS RINGS CLEAR IN THE MICHAEL MACKEY
CONTROVERSIAL LOYALTY STAKES CAPTURED BY HAPPY AS YOU GO
A traffic jam at the start almost cost the impressive winner a disqualification in the $75,000 Loyalty Stakes at Belterra Park on September 18. Breaking from the outside post with Christian Pilares in the irons, Happy as You Go came over on favored Weekend Buzz that caused a chain reaction hampering several horses on the inside. Happy as You Go was straightened after the incident and went on to duel on the front end, eventually pulling away by a length at the wire to best the boys in the race for 2-year-old Accredited-breds. Rallying behind her was her stablemate Weekend Buzz passing First Song who got clear of the trouble and fought on the front end with the winner.
Veteran rider T.D. Houghton, who celebrated his 6,000th career win earlier in the week, immediately lodged an objection against the winner. According to the official Equibase chart, “Weekend Buzz had tons of trouble early on, with the rider almost coming off while checking badly, floated wide at the quarter pole with a game effort to the wire after a horrible eventful trip.” He came over so fast and hadn’t cleared us, that I thought we were going to the ground,” stated Houghton. “My horse went down a ways and I went up on his neck. I thought Perry Ouzts was going down, too. He really had to check hard to get his horse (What a Rumor, 6th) out of there. We ended up second-to-last early and the fact we still ran second says a lot. He was the best horse out there and I wanted the stewards to look at it.
That, they did. And for an extended period of time, Finally leaving the official order of finish stand. Trainer Bob Gorham didn’t fret too much, even if they switched the order, he was going to train the top two finishers. “She lives up to her name, just a happy horse. I bought her at the Ohio Sale and I’m a believer in the sale, that’s where I bought two-time stakes winner Edge of Night. This filly has filled out and matured nicely. Put a line through her first start. She had gate issues and spotted the field 10 lengths. We schooled her in the morning, including a nice work and she went wire to wire in her next start and won by 8 ¾ lengths.”
Happy as You Go was purchased by Gorham at the Ohio Mixed Sale as a yearling last year. She races in the colors of his sister Marion. She is a daughter of Mobil out of Preservation Hall by Dixieland Band and was bred by Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm. She has won two of three starts and now has earnings of $61,716.
MICHAEL MACKEY MEMORIAL WAS A ONE RING CIRCUS
The $75,000 Michael Mackey Memorial, named in honor of the long-time Racing Secretary at Thistledown, was contested September 10. A field of seven Ohio-bred fillies and mares went to post, and with the exception of the well-travelled Magna Rose, Thistledown was home to the rest and all have shown a fondness for the North Randall oval. None more than Circus Rings, who has scored there in 8 of her 9 lifetime victories.
Totally Obsessed was sent away as the 4 to 5 choice and fought with Magna Rose on the front end for the first half of the 6-furlong test. At that point regular rider Hector Berrios put Circus Rings into the battle and wrested the lead from Totally Obsessed at the head of the lane. With a little left-handed urging from Berrios, the 5-year-old mare drew away to win by three lengths. Totally Obsessed held off a solid late rally from longshot Cali Dream, at they remined in that order under the wire with the winner clocking 1:12.62.
Circus Rings was recording her second stakes victory in five outings and the Valerie Shanyfelt trainee moved her career record to 25-9-3-2mfor earnings of $277,181. The daughter of Wilburn out of Ring Ring Ring by Petionville was bred by Michael and Penny Lauer. She is owned by Knights A to Z Racing LLC.
Belterra Park, Ohio HBPA End Impasse, Simulcasting Set To Resume Under New Three-Year Contract
Courtesy to OTBO from The Paulick Report Column by Ray Paulick Photo: Coady Photography
Officials with Belterra Park and the Ohio Horsemen’s Benevolent and ProtectiveAssociation have agreed to a three-year contract that will result in the resumption of simulcasting from the Cincinnati, Ohio, racetrack as early as Tuesday.
The simulcast signal was shut off earlier this month after horsemen – who have been involved in protracted contract talks with Belterra – opted not to renew an export approval agreement that expired at the end of August.
With no simulcasting or advance deposit wagering and extremely limited on-site betting, handle at Belterra plunged. The first seven cards of September have averaged just $29,229 in pari-mutuel wagers compared to $874,261 on the final live program in August.
“Our board has approved a new contract with Belterra that we are in the process of finalizing today,” said Dave Basler, executive director of the Ohio HBPA. “I expect approval by this (Monday) evening and the signal should be back up tomorrow.”
Basler said the two sides have been operating off a contract from the old River Downs racetrack dating back to the 1990s that preceded both casino wagering in Ohio and the replacement of River Downs by Belterra. Changes of ownership of the racetrack casino – now part of Boyd Gaming – complicated the process, Basler said.
“The percentage (from casino revenue) paid to horsemen was set by the racing commission via resolution, but how that was distributed was being done without agreement,” said Basler, who said the amount in question was $9 million annually. “The process really bogged down the last couple months and we we thought it might drag on for the next couple months.”
Basler said the contract and export approval both run through December 2023.
The 2019 meet at Belterra Park ends Oct. 9 and racing is scheduled to resume in April 2020.
LAST CALL FOR SELLING IN THE FALL – GRIZABELLA REPEATS IN $75,000 MISS SOUTHERN OHIO
LAST CALL FOR SELLING IN THE FALL – GRIZABELLA REPEATS IN MISS SOUTHERN OHIO
IF YOU ARE WANTING TO SELL YOUR THOROUGHBRED
THE BEST PLACE IN OHIO IS THE 2020 OHIO MIXED SALE!
SALE TO TAKE PLACE OCTOBER 15 – DELAWARE COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS
DEADLINE FOR ENTRY IN THE SALE IS SEPTEMBER 15
50 ENTRIES ALREADY RECEIVED
ENTRY FORMS EASILY ACCESSIBLE AT: www.OTBO.com
SALE IS OPEN TO 2-YEAR-OLDS; YEARLINGS; WEANLINGS AND BROODMARES
NOT RESTRICTED TO OHIO-BRED HORSES. NO COMMISSION FEE!
DETAILS ON ENTRY FEES AND REQUIRED PAPERWORK WITH ENTRY FORM
ANY QUESTIONS – CALL DARYL DUNCAN – (740) 502-4549
SALE WILL TAKE PLACE THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15 AT 2:30 P.M.
HORSES ALLOWED ON THE GROUNDS FOR VIEWING OCTOBER 14
Two-time Stakes Winner and Ohio Mixed Sale Graduate: Edge of Night.
Filly has current earnings $172,140. Photo: Dustin Livesay
GRIZABELLA WINS SECOND CONSECUTIVE MISS SOUTHERN OHIO
Exactly one year to the day, Michael Annechino’s 6-year-old mare Grizabella captured the now, $75,000 Miss Southern Ohio, for Accredited-breds going 1 1/16 miles over the greensward at Belterra Park. Once again, good weather prevailed on September 8, providing firm footing for the Jeff Radosevich trainee. She had been plagued with seconditis throughout her 50 race career and had compiled 12 runner-up finishes. In many of those starts she was content to relax early and then make a big run at the finish.
Regular rider Luis River decided to use a slightly different tactic and put Grizabella more forwardly placed as she was in this race last year. They were never more than a length behind pacesetter Leona’s Reward, who is in search of cracking the $1 million mark, and a win in the Miss Ohio would complete the task. John McKee put Leona on the lead, and she was there until the 1/8th pole. Leona was fighting the “Belterra Park Curse.” In all of her 52 lifetime starts and 19 victories, the multi-champion mare had never won a race in Cincinnati. Late in the race, that shadow was cast over her again, as Grizabella pulled away to best her by 2 ¼ lengths. Even money favorite Birdacious encountered several bumping incidents during the race and got up for third.
Grizabella was timed in 1:43.47, besting her time from the previous year by just over a full second. The daughter of Lunarpal out of Chic Gat by Tiger Ridge was bred by Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm. In claiming her first win of the year she now sports a record of 51-7-12-8 for earnings of $392,877. The trip to Belterra Park was worth the drive for trainer Jeff Radosevich and jockey Luis River as they both recorded three wins on the afternoon program.
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New rule for Broodmare Owners. The term “Enters” shall mean physical arrival in this state on or before August 15th of the year in which a foal is conceived. Annual renewal of Broodmares by Aug. 15. Contact: OSRC Greg Veit 614-466-2757