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Art Official takes Hoosier Cup

June 28, 2008
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Betting favorite Art Official won the $500,000 Hoosier Cup Saturday night, making a first-over move before the half and then tracking down Dali to win in 1:51.1 for driver Ryan Anderson and trainer Joe Seekman.
 
McCedes, winner of the New Jersey Classic, was fired out of post four by driver Cat Manzi but needed a :27 first panel to take control. Luc Ouellette settled Dali, who was making his first start since finishing eighth in the North America Cup, third at the pylons.
 
Any thought Manzi had of a stroll to the half quickly disappeared when Brad Hanners made a quick move with Beeeyouuuuuu, who had won in 1:50.3 at Hoosier Park in his previous start. Ouellette quickly followed with Dali.
 
The field passed the half in :55.1 and Dali led into the last turn, reaching the three-quarter station in 1:23.3. By that point Anderson was looming first-over with Art Official.
 
In the homestretch Dali hung tough but Art Official wore him down and had a clear one-length margin by the time he hit the wire. Beeeyouuuuuu held on for third while McCedes faded.
 
\"I just wanted to take my time early in the race,” said Anderson. “I knew Luc would have his horse (Dali) out early, so I wanted to wait until he made his move to the lead. We ended up first-over, which wasn’t exactly where I wanted to be, but he was able to just grind it out.\"
 
Art Official, a 3-year-old colt by Art Major, now has five wins in 10 starts this year for Sawgrass Farms LLC, and his Hoosier Cup purse check boosted his 2008 bankroll to $335,050. He competed in the North America Cup, but finished seventh, pacing his final quarter in :26.3. On June 21 he won a Hanover Stakes at Balmoral Park in 1:50.1.
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