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

Repo Rocks #6 ridden by Andrew Wolfsont rolls past Five Dreams #4 to capture the $75,000 Blitzen Handicap on January 4, 2023 at Parx Racing in Bensalem, PA. Repo Rocks is trained by Jamie Ness for owner Double B Racing Stables LLC. Photo by Bill Denver/EQUI-PHOTO.

FIRST STAR: INDIAN LAKE. Recently claimed by Hugh McMahon, this gelding got back on the right track on Saturday, winning a third-level allowance optional claiming sprint by a neck. In a change of tactics, favored Threes Over Deuces went to the front and set the pace, while Indian Lake sat off him on the outside under Angel Cruz. The two battled in the stretch, but Indian Lake ultimately got the upper hand and outfinished the favorite to pull off the 8-1 upset. He covered six furlongs in 1:11.44 for his first victory since the 2021 Bald Eagle Derby. Larry Rabold is the winning owner.

SECOND STAR: PRODIGY DOLL. In just her second start since last June, Prodigy Doll picked up a win in a third-level allowance optional claiming sprint on Saturday. The speedy Maryland-bred Response Time, sent off as the even-money favorite, cleared to the front from post position six and set the early pace. Prodigy Doll rated near the back of the pack early on, then moved to challenge the leader while wide in the stretch. Response Time had little resistance, and Prodigy Doll won by two lengths, going six furlongs in 1:11.69. The winner of the 2021 Cheryl White Memorial Stakes at Mahoning Valley picked up her fourth lifetime win in 18 starts while increasing her earnings to $241,320. She’s owned by HnR Nothhaft Horse Racing LLC, trained by Phil Schoenthal, and ridden by Horacio Karamanos.

THIRD STAR: JEIRON BARBOSA. On Saturday, Barbosa was announced as one of the finalists for the Eclipse Award for champion apprentice. The day before, he asserted his status as one of Maryland’s best riders with three wins on the Friday card. He took race 6 on Shaft’s Bullet, for trainer Gary Capuano, race 8 aboard Gerrys Gem, trained by Damon Dilodovico, and the 9th race with Miss Fussy Pants, for trainer Hammy Smith. Barbosa added on to his big weekend with a sweep of Sunday’s late double, taking race 7 on Up Against It for Dilodovico and the 8th race aboard Ben Feliciano trainee Blame the Bourbon.

Charles Town Races

FIRST STAR: ANTHON FARRIOR. Charles Town’s leading trainer in 2022 picked up where he left off on Saturday, winning three races on the card. He teamed up with Arnaldo Bocachica on two races, taking race 1 with Divine Fashion and race 4 with Curlin’s Malibu. He completed the hat trick in race 5 with Freedom Rider, ridden by Reshawn Latchman. He had four additional winners earlier on opening week, giving him an already-commanding early lead in the training standings.

SECOND STAR: YES SIR ROBERT. Saturday’s featured event, an open first-level allowance race, went to Yes Sir Robert in impressive fashion. Under Xavier Perez, he made his move three-wide on the third and final turn, and held a commanding advantage by the time they came down to the wire. He hit the line five lengths in front, going 1 1/16 miles in 1:47.87. It was, of course, his first win of the year, and his second victory in his last three starts. He’s owned by F N H Stable and trained by Jonathan Maldonado.

THIRD STAR: DULCIMER DAME. One of Farrior’s winners earlier in the week was Dulcimer Dame, who made it four victories in her last five starts with a starter allowance score on Thursday. As the 1-2 favorite, she made a big for the lead on the far turn under Arnaldo Bocachica and drew off to a 3 1/2-length triumph. She ran seven furlongs in 1:26.66 for owner Richard Burnsworth.

Parx Racing

FIRST STAR: REPO ROCKS. After racing was cancelled in the last week of 2022 due to track issues, Parx resumed racing this past week, including a bevy of rescheduled stakes races. One of them, Wednesday’s Blitzen Stakes, went to Virginia-bred Repo Rocks, for his second consecutive stakes win. He split horses in the stretch and chased down early leader Five Dreams, overhauling him late to win by three-quarters of a length. In his prior start, he won the Let’s Give Thanks Stakes on this track the day before Thanksgiving. He’s owned by Double B Racing Stable, trained by Jamie Ness, and ridden by Andrew Wolfsont.

SECOND STAR: EMPIRE HOUSE. The female equivalent of the Blitzen Stakes also took place on Wednesday, as filly and mare sprinters battled in the Mrs. Claus Stakes. Empire House, based in California for Jonathan Wong and making her east coast debut, won by 2 1/2 lengths to pull off the 11-1 upset. She dueled with Centre Court Champ in the two-path throughout the race, but eventually pulled clear of that rival for her second career stakes win. She’s owned by Tommy Town Thoroughbreds LLC and was ridden by Ruben Silvera.

THIRD STAR: RIDIN WITH BIDEN. This Butch Reid-trained gelding won his fourth stakes race in the past six months on Wednesday, taking the Kris Kringle Stakes by a nose. He raced wide throughout and struck the front at the top of the stretch, then had to fend off the late rally of Amatteroftime. The wire came just in time for Ridin With Biden, who was named an alternate invitee for the Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 28. He’s owned by Cash is King LLC and LC Racing LLC and was ridden by Paco Lopez.

Region’s Best

  1. Repo Rocks- Another stakes win for the Virginia-bred
  2. Anthony Farrior
  3. Empire House