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Eight sophs square off in Taser Gun stake

April 30, 2010
HOME PRINT

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Illinois conceived and foaled three-year-old pacing colts will take center stage on Friday night as a field of eight sophomores head to the gate for the $14,000 Taser Gun Stake. This state-bred test has been carded as race nine on Friday’s  14-race program.
   
Coming off an impressive win in the Sportsmaster Stake in his 2010 debut Jesse De Long’s Delco Willobee has been accorded the 5-2 morning line favoritism among this group.

After completing an impressive first season on the county fair circuit in which he posted a record of 8-3-0 in 12 starts, the gelded son of Ft. Apache Hanover came out ready to roll in his sophomore debut back on April 16th. Circling rivals while three-wide around the far turn, driver John De Long urged the good looking gelding to the front and the Jesse De Long trainee proceeded to pace away from his rivals in the late going to score by 3 ¼ lengths in a career best of 1:56.0.
   
“He’s a really nice horse and I didn’t want to brutalize him since it was his first start of the year,” said De Long after the victory. “The way it worked out he did it all on his own and I never even had to hit him one time. He’s got a chance to be a very nice horse this year.”
   
Jim Reynolds, Orange Crush Racing and Terry Rathgeber’s Southern Sport was the beaten 3-5 favorite in that Sportsmaster Stake and he’ll be looking to make amends on Friday night.
   
The gelded son of Sportsmaster has a win and two second place finishes in his first four starts of the season, including a speedy 1:54.4 triumph in wire to wire fashion at Balmoral Park.  Blessed with an abundance of gate speed Southern Sport never saw the pylons in the Sportsmaster Stake but still managed to hold on gamely to be the runner-up in that race.
   
Another to keep an eye on in here is Robert & Taylor Rietveld’s Apache Renegade who will be making his sophomore debut after winning his qualifier by 13 lengths in 1:56.4 at Balmoral.
   
The Nelson Willis trained son of Ft. Apache Hanover is the leading money winner in the field after posting a record of 2-4-5 in 18 starts last year with earnings of just over $62,000. He is also the fastest colt in the group with a mark of 1:53.4 which was taken at Balmoral Park.
   
Rounding out the field will be JHS, One Chaser, NJ’s Super Charger, Nash Gram and Golly Lester.(Balmoral)
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