Mid-Atlantic Three Stars: March 16
Shackled Love pulled the upset in Saturday’s Private Terms at Laurel Park. Photo: Jerry Dzierwinski.
Plenty of racing action took place throughout the Mid-Atlantic this past week.
Here’s a look at the “three stars” of each track:
- FIRST STAR: WHERESHETOLDMEGO. The biggest star to win on Saturday’s stakes-packed card was Whereshetoldmetogo, who prevailed by 2 1/2 lengths in the Not For Love Stakes. Making his 2021 debut, he was the heavy 1/5 favorite in the field of seven Maryland-breds. Under Sheldon Russell, he rated off the pace, then moved four-wide in the stretch. Despite not changing leads, he rallied strongly in the stretch and drew off in the stretch. That marks the third stakes win in a row for this Maryland-bred gelding. He’s owned by Madaket Stables LLC, Ten Strike Racing, Michael Kisber, and Black Cloud Stable LLC, and trained by Brittany Russell. This was the second stakes win of the day for Sheldon; he won the Beyond the Wire Stakes in an upset with Littlestitious.
- SECOND STAR: SHACKLED LOVE. Charlie Marquez achieved a riding milestone on Saturday, as he guided Shackled Love to an upset win in the Private Terms Stakes for his first stakes victory. He pressed front-running favorite Maythehorsebwithu in the early stages, then moved to engage that rival on the final turn. Entering the stretch, Maythehorsebwithu looked like he was beat, but he re-rallied on the inside and battled gamely in the last eighth. However, Shackled Love held sway, to pull a 21/1 surprise win. He covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:43.56, for owners Z W P Stables Inc and Non Stop Stable and trainer Gary Capuano.
- THIRD STAR: VICTOR CARRASCO. Carrasco won back-to-back stakes on Saturday. He rode Cordmaker to a gate-to-wire win in the Harrison Johnson Memorial Stakes, as the slight 3/1 favorite. It was Cordmaker’s first win since September 2019. He’s owned by Hillwood Stable LLC and trained by Rodney Jenkins. In the next race, Carrasco was aboard Kiss the Girl, who made a wide move on the turn and wore down the pacesetters to win the Conniver Stakes by 3/4 of a length. The winning filly is owned by Three Diamonds Farm and trained by Mike Trombetta.
CHARLES TOWN RACES
- FIRST STAR: GOOD KARMA. This West Virginia-bred filly improved to 2-for-2 on the year, winning an open allowance race Thursday night. Sent off at 6/1 in the 4 1/2 furlong contest, Luis Batista put her on the early lead, and drew off to a clear advantage by the opening quarter. No one was able to catch her, and she crossed the wire 2 3/4 lengths in front, with favored Sonde of Music checking in second. Luis Batista was in the saddle, for owner/trainer Ronney Brown, who co-owns with Nicole Brown.
- SECOND STAR: RONNEY BROWN. Brown’s win with Good Karma was one of four he earned on the racing week. He won Wednesday’s feature with Golden Key, with Luis Batista in the irons. In addition to Good Karma on Thursday, he also won in a three-horse photo with Fluent in Sarcasm in race 4, ridden by Fredy Peltroche On Friday, Brown won the 7th race with Azzurra. Batista also had the mount on her. Brown is third in the trainer standings, with 23 wins.
- THIRD STAR: FIBER AND EMILY. Friday night’s feature, a West Virginia-bred allowance optional claiming race, went to 2/1 shot Fiber and Emily. Victor Rodriguez got his mount to the lead early, and held on to it the entire way. He crossed the wire a length in front, covering 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:20.03. That was the first win of the year for this gelding, who has now won six races lifetime while earning more than $159,000. He’s owned and trained by William Atkins.
- FIRST STAR: ROCK ON LUKE. Dreams Untold was the heavy 3/5 favorite in last Monday’s feature, an open allowance at a mile and 70 yards. However, he showed little, and finished a well-beaten fifth. Meanwhile, Rock on Luke, the fourth choice in the field of seven, went to the lead early on, and never gave it up. He bounded across the wire 1 3/4 lengths in front, covering the distance in 1:42.20. He’s never been worse than third in ten career starts, while earning more than $159,000. Jennifer Trueheart is the winning owner, Regina Brennan the winning trainer.
- SECOND STAR: LOUIS LINDER. Linder led the way among Parx trainers last week, with three wins. He won with both of his entries on Monday’s card, taking race 3 with Lean on E, ridden by Luis Ocasio, and race 4 with Wings of Fury, ridden by Jorge Gonzalez. On Wednesday, he picked up his third win of the week, as Legal Gump won with Ruben Silvera in the saddle. Linder’s 11 wins are good for fourth in the Parx trainer standings.
- THIRD STAR: ARRECIFE. Wednesday’s feature, a Pennsylvania-bred allowance, saw a staggering upset. Arrecife, who entered the race with a 3-for-53 record, came from last to score a 55/1 victory by 1 1/2 lengths. He rode the rail most of the way, then angled off the rail late and chased down clear leader Incite for the win. That marked Arrecife’s first win since September 2020, and just his second victory since June 2018. Jonathan Ocasio had the mount, for owner Felissa Dunn and trainer John Dunn.
LATEST RACING NEWS
Your five-minute read to catch up on all the Mid-Atlantic racing action you may have missed over the weekend…
Maryland-bred Knicks Go, the likely horse of the year, on Sunday had his final tuneup prior to Saturday’s G1 Pegasus World Cup.
Three-year-old Joe, winner of the Maryland Juvenile Championship, stretched out to two turns nicely to win an allowance at Laurel Park.
Hibiscus Punch, winner of the 2021 G3 Fritchie, had her final breeze Saturday morning in preparation for the Jan. 29 What a Summer at Laurel Park.
Air Token, winner of the 2021 Maryland Million Sprint, won an allowance contest Friday at Laurel Park for his first win since.
Wondrwherecraigis, idle since a win in the G3 Bold Ruler in October, may make his next start Jan. 29 in the Fire Plug at Laurel Park.