Luna Belle
Luna Belle won the Beyond the Wire Stakes. 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:

Laurel Park

FIRST STAR: WHERESHETOLDMETOGO. This Brittany Russell-trained sprinter had a great campaign last year, winning four stakes races. He picked up where he left off in his 2022 debut, winning the Not For Love Stakes for the second consecutive year on Saturday. After rating in the middle of the pack early on, he moved four-wide in the stretch and chased down early leader Jaxon Traveler to win by three-quarters of a length, going six furlongs in 1:10.97. He’s now won eleven stakes races in his career, while earning almost $800,000. He’s owned by Madaket Stables LLC, Ten Strike Racing, Michael Kisber and BTR Racing Inc and ridden by Jevian Toledo.

SECOND STAR: FILLE D’ESPRIT. Off a solid third-place finish in the Barbara Fritchie Stakes last out, Fille d’Esprit dropped back into Maryland-bred company on Saturday in the Conniver Stakes. She crushed the field, which included Maryland stalwarts Kiss the Girl and Artful Splatter, to win by eight lengths. This six-year-old mare went seven furlongs in 1:24.54 for her first stakes win, and her eighth victory lifetime from 14 starts. Xavier Perez had the mount for owners C J I Phoenix Group and No Guts No Glory Farm and trainer Jerry Robb.

THIRD STAR: LUNA BELLE. This Maryland-bred filly made waves with impressive stakes wins in her first two starts of her 3-year-old season. She was the odds-on favorite in Saturday’s Beyond the Wire Stakes, and drew off impressively to win by 3 1/2 lengths. She’s now won four stakes races in a row, and has earned more than $306,000 in her career. Hamilton Smith trains and co-owns here with Deborah Green. Denis Araujo had the winning mount.

Charles Town Races

FIRST STAR: BEARAKONTIE. Off a dominant stretch of races, most of which came at Penn National, Bearakontie came back to Charles Town on Wednesday night and won his sixth consecutive race. As the odds-on choice in a 1 1/16-mile starter optional claiming race, he was pressed on the early pace, but pulled clear late and won by five lengths. He won at seven furlongs earlier in the Charles Town meet, and now proved himself going a longer distance on this track. He’s owned and trained by Robert Johnston and ridden by Inoel Beato.

SECOND STAR: GOODLUCKCHUCK. A first-level allowance optional claiming contest at 1 1/16 miles on Saturday night saw Goodluckchuck absolutely crush the field. He set the early pace and powered away over a sloppy track to win by 15 1/4 lengths. The victory marked his seventh career victory, and his first at Charles Town in 15 months. Araujo was in the saddle on this one, for owner Michael Overfelt and trainer Robert Bailes.

THIRD STAR: ALGEBRAIC. Earlier on the Saturday card, Algebraic won the featured event, a second-level allowance optional claiming race at 6 1/2 furlongs. He went straight to the early lead and held clear throughout, crossing the line 2 1/2 lengths in front while going the distance in 1:20.74. He’s won four times in his last seven starts, including a win at Charles Town in late October. He’s owned by Larry Rabold, trained by Hugh McMahon, and was ridden by Jean Alvelo.

Parx Racing

FIRST STARS: COBBLE ROAD. Last Wednesday’s feature event, a starter allowance race at 1 1/16 miles, saw Cobble Road win his third consecutive race. He cleared to the front from the outside post position and opened up a 3 1/2 length lead early on. Favored Hard Sting dueled with him down the stretch, but Cobble Road had more to give, and held on to win by a head. He’s owned by Club Risque Stable and Gregory Quick, trained by Randy Allen, and ridden by Edwin Rivera.

SECOND STAR: THORNY TALE. One of the highlights of the Tuesday program was a first-level allowance optional claiming race going one mile and 70 yards. Odds-on favorite Thorny Tale set the early pace and cruised to victory as much the best, winning by 6 1/4 lengths after setting the early pace. He had a great year at Parx in 2021, winning six races, and this was his first victory of his 2022 campaign. Ruben SIlvera had the ride for owner Jagger Inc and trainer Jamie Ness.

THIRD STAR: BUCKS STONE. Later on the Tuesday card, this Pennsylvania-bred mare won a first-level allowance optional claiming affair by 1 1/4 lengths. Favored Empress Deona opened up a big early lead and was four lengths in front when they turned for home, but got tired in the last eighth. Bucks Stone took full advantage and got up for the victory. She’s owned by Francis DeLuca, trained by Philip Aristone, and ridden by Silvestre Gonzalez.

Region’s Best

  1. Whereshetoldmetogo- Hopes Not for Love is springboard to big campaign.
  2. Fille d’Esprit
  3. Bearakontie