09/27/2010 1:18PM

Couldabenthewhisky closes Emerald meet in style

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AUBURN, Wash. – Couldabenthewhisky romped to a five-length victory Sunday in the $75,000 Gottstein Futurity as Emerald Downs brought down the curtain on its 15th season.

The fourth favorite in a field of eight in Emerald’s traditional 2-year-old championship, Couldabenthewhisky ($9.80) tracked pacesetter Winter Warlock from midpack down the backstretch, moved readily to take command turning for home, and quickly drew clear while running 1 1/16 miles on a sloppy track in 1:42.60.

Seattle Sniper finished second, 1 1/4 lengths ahead of Jebrica. They were followed by 2-1 favorite Winter Warlock, Tweetie Pie, Fueled by Kaffine, Carr Creek, and Giuseppe G.

It was the third stakes victory of the meeting for Couldabenthewhisky, a Washington-bred by Harbor the Gold, and his four wins overall tied the track record for most victories by a 2-year-old. His previous scores included the restricted Strong Ruler Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs, and the WTBOA Lads Stakes at one mile. His victory Sunday was worth $37,125, pushing his lifetime earnings to $91,602 for trainer Bonnie Jenne, who owns the 2-year-old gelding in partnership with Andy Maib of Redmond, Wash., Craig Fredrickson of Bainbridge Island, Wash., and Stan Fredrickson of Renton, Wash.

Gallyn Mitchell was aboard for Couldabenthewhisky’s fourth victory in six starts.

“I wanted to save ground around the first turn and try to keep mud out of his face,” Mitchell said. “I knew he had a big kick, so I wanted to be as patient as I could. [Seattle Sniper] got the jump on me a little bit into the lane, but I knew I had plenty of horse. When I asked him, he opened up five lengths like it was nothing.”