Indiana Downs plays host to packed stakes weekend
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Indiana Downs will offer a full slate of racing action this weekend. Two $104,900 divisions of the Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes for freshman filly pacers will headline Friday’s card while just over $1 million in purses are up for grabs in Saturday’s Indiana Summer Championships.
A group of 14 freshman pacing fillies will converge on the Shelbyville oval Friday evening for the Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes, carded as the eighth and 10th races on the program. The first division features a field of seven which includes Merv and Kelly Chupp’s Notjustaprettyface. The Jate Lobell homebred has won once in seven attempts, finishing fifth in her last outing, the $638,400 Shes A Great Lady final. Notjustaprettyface, a winner of $97,238 this season, will start from the outside post.
Hawaiian Drink, fresh off a 1:52.4 victory in the Hayes, will also contest the first split. Trained by Mark Harder for Bulletproof Enterprises, the I Am A Fool filly has won three of four starts, with earnings of $45,470. She will start from post four. Erv Miller’s Thou Shalt Not, a fifth-place finisher in the $300,000 KYSS final at Lexington, will start from post five. The daughter of Real Desire has yet to win this season.
Twist N Clout enters the Kentuckiana contests with the most earnings of any filly. The Western Ideal freshman has won three of six starts for trainer Joe Holloway and owner Val D’Or Farms, including the $175,000 NJSS final at the Meadowlands. She enters Friday’s race off a third-place effort in the $50,120 Molly Pitcher at Freehold, and will start from post two.
Twist N Clout will be joined by Singnoevil Hanover, a four-time winner in 2008. A daughter of The Panderosa, the Dan Altmeyer trainee ships to Indiana Downs after racing at The Meadows and Pocono Downs. She has won in a division of the Arden Downs and PASS action, most recently finishing fourth in a PASS contest. Limestone Cowgirl, who set a track record at the Indiana State Fair in winning her $13,543 division of the Hoosier Stake, will start from the rail for trainer Dan Shetler. The Western Hanover lass has won three of six starts for the Bowl Stables.
A total of 10 champions will be crowed Saturday evening as Indiana Downs hosts the second annual Indiana Summer Championships. Freshman pacers and trotters will compete in $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals while their sophomore counterparts will battle it out in $100,000 ISS contests. Older mare trotters and stallion and gelding pacers will also compete in $100,000 finals. The 14 race card will over just over $1 million in total purses.
Mya Tri will attempt to extend her career undefeated streak to 21 with a victory in the $100,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for sophomore trotting fillies. After a perfect 10-for-10 freshman campaign, the Pining Fora Tri filly has returned to win all nine of her starts this season. She has won just shy of $227,000 in her illustrious career. Walter Haynes Jr., who co-owns the filly with breeder Bob Wientjes, will drive.
I Scoot Hanover geldings Freddyscooter and Robin I Scoot will renew their rivalry in the $100,000 ISS final for sophomore colt and gelding pacers. Robin I Scoot won the $100,000 final at Hoosier Park, but Freddyscooter has prevailed in the last two head-to-head matchups. Steve Brannan’s homebred has come on as of late, defeating Robin I Scoot by a neck July 26 in a lifetime best 1:51.2. Since then, he has won two of three, and will start from post four in the final for Brad Hanners. Robin I Scoot, trained by Dan Perdue, will line up in post nine.
ABC Mercedes will be gunning for yet another ISS championship for owner Larry Miller Saturday. The three-year-old ABC Garland gelding trotted to victory in the $100,000 final at Hoosier Park earlier this year, and looks to make it two for two in the $100,000 finale at Indiana Downs. O’Mara will drive ABC Mercedes for trainer Joe Putnam.
EJ’s Copperstone also looks to sweep the finals for sophomore pacing fillies. A divisional champion at two, the Lease On Life filly claimed the $100,000 final this spring for trainer Steve Gray and owners L J Stone and Phillip Hawk. A winner of more than $196,000 in her career, the sophomore has won eight of nine this season.
Freshman trotting gelding Sunny Ben Joe will attempt to make a clean sweep in Indiana Sires Stakes action. The son of Super Ben Joe won each of his $15,000 preliminary legs entering Saturday’s $75,000 final. Mark O’Mara will guide the Alvin Miller entry from post eight in the evening’s fourth race. Sunny Ben Joe is owned by Lee Brook Farms of South Orange, N.J.