A week ago the Monticello Raceway publicity department got a call from Canadian Sheldon Rose who asked if he entered his pacing mare, Gefilte Fish, in the track’s annual Passover Pace would he be able to participate in the event relegated to drivers of Jewish descent. He was told in no uncertain terms, that yes he would get a drive as long as he brought his pacer whose name was so apropos for the Passover Pace.
Rose was excited and was making plans to ship Gefilte Fish to Monticello Raceway from Flamboro Downs where she had been competing. However Monday, Rose made another call to the Mighty M publicity department but this time with depressing news.
“Jody Jamison drove Gefite Fish in her last start and they were parked out the entire mile and she ended-up on the qualifying list,” he said dejectedly.
"Well, worse things could have happened,” the Mighty M publicity department shot back. “So why don’t you just qualify her and get her off the judges' list and then she’ll be fine for the (Passover Pace) race.”
“I’m sorry to tell you I drove her myself in a qualifying race the other day and they went to the half in 1:04 and she (Gefilte Fish) finished in 2:05.1 and I notice your qualifying time is 2:04,” Rose said dejectedly.
“Well maybe all is not lost,” he was told. “How about trying to qualify her again?”
“I can’t,” Rose said. “The only places where we can qualify are this coming weekend and that will be too close to the Passover Pace (which is on Monday, April 5).”
“So we’ll ask the presiding judge if she can go in the race if it’s called an invitational,” was the response from the publicity department.
But after checking with the PJ all hopes for Gefilte Fish to race in this year’s Passover Pace were squelched.
“Every horse must meet the qualifying standards and I’m sorry but we can’t bend the rules,” the presiding judge said.
A return call was made to Rose and he was informed of the bad news.
“I’m really sorry that this happened. I was so looking forward to racing in the Passover Pace,” Rose said, before adding philosophically, “Well, there’s always next year.”
As a gesture of good faith Rose was offered a drive in this year’s Passover Pace despite of all that had transpired.
”Thank you very much for the offer but it’s probably best to let one of the local boys drive,” Rose said. (Monticello)