Meadow Vespers goes for fifth straight Sire Stakes win in Older Male division
Through all the uncertainty and changes Michigan’s racing industry has faced over the last four years, one thing has remained consistent – Meadow Vespers is money in the Sire Stakes.
Beginning with the 2005 three-year-old Sire Stakes at Great Lakes Downs, Meadow Vespers has found the winner’s circle a perfect four straight years. He will attempt to cap a half decade of dominance in Saturday’s $50,000 Sire Stakes for older males at Pinnacle Race Course.
Meadow Vespers enters the 1 1/8 mile Sire Stakes off a third place finish in the Sep. 12 Frontier Handicap at Pinnacle, where his usual last-to-first theatrics were stalled by traffic problems. The seven-year-old Meadow Prayer gelding has not finished off the board during his 2009 campaign, including a win in the Aug. 15 Michigan Breeders Cup Handicap. Meadow Vespers is owned by J. Mack Enterprise Inc. and trained by Richard Rettele. J.J. Delgado will have the assignment on Saturday.
The older males division features another winner from last year’s Sire Stakes, three-year-old division champion Bipolar Express. The four-year-old Equality gelding has spent most of his 2009 campaign at Presque Isle Downs, most recently coming off a fourth place finish in a Sep. 3 claiming race at the Erie, Pennsylvania track. Bipolar Express is owned Winning Stables, Inc and trained by Gerald Bennett, who claimed the horse back in his last start for $35,000 after losing his charge in the preceding race for a $25,000 tag. T.D. Houghton will have the mount in Saturday’s race.
Another road-tested Michigan-bred returning home for the Sire Stakes is Demagoguery. The seven-year-old Demaloot Demashoot gelding has entered the gates at four different tracks during his 2009 campaign, including Tampa Bay Downs, Thistledown, Presque Isle Downs and a runner-up finish in the July 4 Wolverine Handicap in his lone start at Pinnacle Race Course. He comes into the Sire Stakes off a second place finish in a Sep. 12 allowance race at Thistledown. Demagoguery is owned by Mary Mazur and trained by Gerald Bennett. Godofredo Laurente will get the leg up.
#. Horse / Jockey / Trainer / Odds
1. Hot Chili / F Mata / J R Jackson / 6-1
2. Mt. Factor / A Ortiz / R J Rettele / 20-1
3. Meadow Vespers / J J Delgado / R J Rettele / 8-5
4. Bipolar Express / T D Houghton / G S Bennett / 2-1
5. Buscando Fortuna / A O Stanley / R M Gorham / 15-1
6. My First Buck / J Skerrett / R M Gorham / 15-1
7. Demagoguery / G Laurente / G S Bennett / 8-1
8. Rhythm In Motion / A A Marin / J R Jackson / 20-1
Valley Loot aims at third consecutive Sire Stakes win in Older Female division
Not to be outdone by Meadow Vespers’ streak, Valley Loot has staged her own run of two Sire Stakes wins. While she has a long way to go to catch up to her rival, Valley Loot has a big streak of her own, as the two-time defending Horse of the Year.
Valley Loot will look to extend both streaks to a third year in Saturday’s $50,000 Sire Stakes, a 1 1/8 mile race for older females at Pinnacle Race Course.
Though Valley Loot notched a stakes win in the June 16 Golden Sylvia Handicap at Mountaineer and ran a respectable third in the July 25 Winward Stakes at Presque Isle Downs, she has yet to show her usual dominant form at Pinnacle. The five-year-old Demaloot Demashoot mare enters the Sire Stakes off a heartbreaking loss to three-year-old Moon Charmer in the final strides of the Sep. 12 Farer Belle Lee Handicap, and has yet to win a race at the Detroit racetrack this year. Federico Mata will ride Valley Loot for owner Lisa Campbell and trainer Ronald Allen, Sr.
Campbell and Allen will also send Wave Pool, another Sire Stakes winner, to the post on Saturday. The four-year-old Sea Legs filly won the sophomore fillies division of the Sire Stakes in 2008. She enters this year’s older females contest off a fourth place finish in the Farer Belle Lee Handicap. Wave Pool will be ridden by Jeffrey Skerrett.
The wild card in the race will be Clever Idea, who makes her first start since Nov. 1 of last year. The four-year-old Matchlite filly finished second that day to fellow Sire Stakes entrant Nell’s Enjoyment in an allowance race at Pinnacle. During her three-year-old campaign, Clever Idea was one of the top fillies in her class, with a win in the Michigan Oaks and a runner-up effort in the Sire Stakes. Dave Kueffner trains Clever Idea for owner Steve Prain. J.J. Delgado will have the assignment on Saturday.
#. Horse / Jockey / Trainer / Odds
1. Glory Bea / W Ortiz / J A Lewis / 20-1
2. She Could Be Good / T D Houghton / R M Gorham / 12-1
3. Valley Loot / F Mata / R D Allen, Sr. / 6-5
4. Half A Glance / M E Doser / S Sowle / 15-1
5. Guns and Giggles / A Ortiz / J C Rupert / 10-1
6. Wave Pool / J Skerrett / R D Allen, Sr. / 9-2
7. Clever Idea / J J Delgado / D Kueffner / 4-1
8. Nell’s Enjoyment / A A Marin / S M Spiess / 20-1
9. Stellar Star / A O Stanley / D Cluley / 20-1