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

Shahama was much the best in the Grade 3 Monmouth Oaks. Photo Bill Denver/EQUI-Photo.

FIRST STAR: ALOTTAHOPE. Maryland-bred and Maryland-sired 3-year-olds competed in Saturday’s Star de Naskra Stakes, as part of a loaded program. Alottahope made his first stakes victory an impressive one, crushing the field by fifteen lengths. He rated off his stablemate Al Loves Josie, then hit the front as they rounded the turn and pulled away without much urging from jockey Jevian Toledo. He covered seven furlongs in 1:22.91, earning an Equibase figure of 105. He’s owned by No Guts No Glory Farm and trained by Jerry Robb.

SECOND STAR: RIDIN WITH BIDEN. In the Battery Park Stakes three weeks ago, Ridin With Biden got stuck behind a very slow pace, and had no chance to catch up to the winner, Tax. In the Deputed Testamony Stakes on Saturday, however, Ridin With Biden was the one allowed to set a comfortable early tempo. After going by three-quarters of a mile in 1:13.31, Ridin With Biden began to open up on the field, and crossed the wire 6 1/4 lengths in front. He ran the distance in 1:50.31, for owners Cash is King LLC and LC Racing LC, trainer Robert Reid Jr, and jockey Frankie Pennington.

THIRD STAR: JUSTWAVEANDSMILE. Saturday’s Ben’s Cat Stakes loomed as a showdown between two top Maryland-bred sprinters Jaxon Traveler and Grateful Bred. Justwaveandsmile crashed the party with a 5-1 upset win. Taking full advantage of a long stretch run, he recovered from some early traffic trouble and chased down Grateful Bred and Jaxon Traveler under vigorous urging from Jean Alvelo. He got up just in time and won by a neck, running 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:04.46. He’s owned by Steven Newby and trained Dale Capuano.

Delaware Park

FIRST STAR: JUROR NUMBER FOUR. Allowance optional claiming sprinters met in Saturday’s feature race. Juror Number Four picked up her first win since last November, coming from last and making a three-wide sweep to win going away. She won by 2 1/4 lengths in 1:11.20 for six furlongs. She’s now won four times from sixteen races, with earnings of just over $200,000. This Maryland-bred filly is owned by Cash is King LLC and LC Racing LLC, trained by Brittany Russell, and ridden by Jeremy Rose.

SECOND STAR: LEGAL DEAL. Wednesday’s card included a starter optional claiming sprint. Legal Deal, a Carlos David trainee who recently shipped from his home state of Florida, won his Delaware debut by 1 1/4 lengths. He battled on the early lead with Sevier and Fox Red, then moved wide on the turn and pulled away int he last sixteenth. Sevier, the slight second choice behind Legal Deal, dueled with him throughout and held on for second. The winner is owned by Michele Sargent and Lawrence Sargent and was ridden by Jairo Rendon.

THIRD STAR: BERKS. Later on the Wednesday card, this Maryland-bred gelding won for the third time this year, taking a starter optional claiming race by 3 1/4 lengths. As the odds-on choice, he broke on top and cruised to victory, covering six furlongs in 1:11.03. Jaime Rodriguez had the mount for owner/breeder Jagger Inc and trainer Jamie Ness.

Charles Town Races

FIRST STAR: NO CHANGE. Top West Virginia-breds met in an allowance race on Thursday. No Change, who won the Confucius Say Stakes earlier in the year, tracked veteran Runnin’toluvya and struck the front as they neared the final turn. Under a drive from Marshall Mendez, he pulled away late and won by 1 1/4 lengths, for his sixth win of the year from seven starts. He’s a homebred for owner/trainer John McKee, while Marshall Mendez had the winning mount.

SECOND STAR: PRIMAL DESTINY. Earlier on the Thursday card, this 5-year-old gelding made it four wins in a row. Sent off as the 1-5 choice in a starter allowance race, he broke on top and won the 4 1/2-furlong contest by 5 1/4 lengths. He went on an eight-race winning streak between late 2020 and early 2021, and hasn’t missed the board in six starts this year. Gerald Almodovar had the winning mount for owner Robert Cole Jr and trainer Kevin Patterson.

THIRD STAR: FULL MOON LOVER. On Saturday, this West Virginia-bred filly also extended her winning streak to four straight races. Fancy her Up went off as the 2-5 favorite, but Full Moon Lover beat her to the punch and crossed to the rail and the lead. She drew off in the stretch under Carlos Lopez and won by 2 3/4 lengths, going the distance in 52.31 seconds. She’s a homebred for trainer Ronney Brown, who co-owns with Nicole Brown.

Monmouth Park

FIRST STAR: SHAHAMA. A two-time winner at Meydan earlier this year, including the UAE Oaks, Shahama won her first American stakes race on Sunday, taking the Monmouth Oaks by 2 1/2 lengths. Odds-on favorite Juju’s Map set a modest early pace, but Shahama remained in hot pursuit throughout. As they moved around the final turn, Jorge Vargas asked Shahama for run, and she easily overpowered Juju’s Map, who had no response. Shotgun Hottie came on for second, while Juju’s Map held third. The winning filly is owned by KHK Racing and trained by Todd Pletcher.

SECOND STAR: SHARP AZA TACK. 2-year-olds squared off in the Tyro Stakes on Saturday, going five furlongs on the grass. Sharp Aza Tack broke his maiden at Santa Anita Park for Doug O’Neill last out, then shipped to Monmouth after working at Keeneland. The trip proved very worthwhile, as he broke on top, opened up a clear early lead and blew away the field by 7 1/4 lengths. He went five furlongs in 55.71 seconds, for owner R3 Racing LLC and jockey Jairo Rendon.

THIRD STAR: FEAST. A 23-year-old track record fell on Sunday, when Feast won a second-level allowance optional claiming race. He broke on top from the outside post and lasted through a duel with Powerfully Built and Stratofortress. The latter rival fought with Feast throughout the stretch run, but Feast fended him off and won by a head. He ran five furlongs on dirt in 56.07 seconds, breaking L. B. On Tour’s record of 56.16 seconds, set on August 21, 1999. Feast is owned by Monster Racing Stable, trained by Jose Delgado, and ridden by Jose Ferrer.

Parx Racing

FIRST STAR: NIMBLE BEAST. Wednesday’s feature was a first-level allowance optional claiming race at five furlongs on the dirt, moved off the grass. Nimble Beast, sent off as the 3-10 choice, won for the third time in her last four starts. He set a clear early pace and never encountered a serious challenge, crossing the wire 7 3/4 lengths in front. He ran the distance in 57.78 seconds, for owner Victoria Alih Stables, trainer Patrick Ashton, and jockey Yabriel Ramos.

SECOND STAR: DEXTER HADDOCK. Haddock won three races on Tuesday’s card, including a pair for trainer Frank Pollura. They teamed up to win race 1 with American Roma and race 5 aboard Tio Wil. Haddock also won race 4 aboard J D’s Vista, trained by Herold Whylie. Haddock is currently fifth in the rider standings, with 55 victories from 441 starts.

THIRD STAR: TIO WIL. The aforementioned Tio Wil won a starter allowance race in a 10-1 upset, for his third win of the year. He made a strong, wide move and got up in the last few strides to win by a half-length. All three wins this year have come at Parx. He’s owned by James Aguilar-Jimenez.


FIRST STAR; RED KNIGHT. Wednesday’s Colonial Cup drew a field of eleven going 1 1/2 miles on the grass. 8-year-old Red Knight, making his first start since the John’s Call Stakes last August, made a four-wide move on the turn and powered wide in the stretch to win by 1 1/2 lengths under Horacio Karamanos. He ran the distance in 2:29.67, to set a new track record. This New York-bred has won nine times from 28 starts, with earnings of more than $893,000. Trinity Farm is the winning owner, while Mike Maker is the winning trainer.

SECOND STAR: THE POSER. Earlier on the Wednesday card, this Maryland-bred won a second-level allowance optional claiming race impressively. He rated in the four-path early on, then moved after leader Eastside Cool in the stretch. He pulled clear in the final strides and won by 2 1/4 lengths under Jevian Toledo. He ran 1 1/16 miles on dirt in 1:41.43. Hamilton Smith is the winning trainer, he also co-owns with Deborah Greene.

THIRD STAR: JALEN JOURNEY. Later on the Wednesday program, last year’s DeFrancis Dash winner won for the first time this year. Sent off as the slight favorite in a second-level allowance optional claiming sprint, he rated four-wide off the pace and got up to win by a neck. He was owned by David Bernsen LLC and Rockingham Ranch and trained by Steve Asmussen, but was claimed out of the race by Built Wright Stable LLC and Norman Cash. Feargal Lynch had the winning mount.

Region’s Best

  1. Shahama- Classy filly turned in a sharp score.
  2. Alottahope
  3. Red Knight