Updated on 09/15/2011 12:37PM

DRF's around the ovals


Dha Pog, tops in Pennsylvania, euthanized

Dha Pog, Pennsylvania's 2000 horse of the year, was euthanized after sustaining a badly fractured right ankle in Tuesday's seventh race at Philadelphia Park.

A 5-year-old mare who won nine of 15 starts and nearly $123,000 last season for Team Central Inc. and trainer Guadalupe Preciado, Dha Pog was injured with about a half-mile remaining in a 1 3/16-mile race.

Under Jose Flores, Dha Pog had been laying just off a three-way duel for the lead when Flores decided to send the mare through an opening along the rail. At the moment she began to pick it up, Dha Pog appeared to take a bad step, and Flores immediately slammed on the brakes in an effort to get her pulled up as soon as possible.

A temporary cast was used to support the leg while she was walked into the equine ambulance, and her connections hoped to save her for use as a broodmare, but the damage to her right front leg was too severe. Her career ends with 12 victories from 30 starts and earnings of $165,476.

- Joe DeVivo

Canterbury Park

Canterbury bettors saw a three-way dead heat for a placing in the last race Thursday night. A fourth place photo normally wouldn't have attracted any attention, but Canterbury schedules its superfecta for the nightcap. The favorite, Linda's Peak, 25-1 shot Green Eyed Lady, and 7-1 Sky Can Fly came together at the wire to complete the exotic behind winner Wanda the Witch ($21.40). Only one bettor had the winning superfecta combination, having tossed the favorite and selecting Green Eyed Lady to complete the $3,929.20 payoff. The trifecta for the race returned $12,922.

* Eight-year-old Receiver ran what was probably the last race of his career on Sunday. Competing in a starter allowance prep for the Claiming Crown, Receiver broke down and unseated rider Tho Nguyen just past the wire.

A Kentucky-bred son of Phone Trick, he had won $350,845 and earned placings in the 1998 runnings of the Grade 2 A Phenomenon and Forego Handicaps. Claimed for $10,000 in his previous start at Churchill Downs in May by partners Craig Biorn and trainer Harvey Jacobsen, Receiver is currently receiving care at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Hospital. His connnections hope that with sufficient recovery Receiver can stand at stud.

- David M. Miller

Colonial Downs

A trio of longshots who stormed past a tiring favorite in the stretch combined for a $15,444 trifecta Tuesday at Colonial Downs.

In the fifth race, Procreate, the 2-1 favorite, had the lead at the top of the stretch, but shortened stride and wound up fourth. First Armaison, a 16-1, rallied strongly to win the race. Canal Town, dismissed at 25-1 despite winning a first-level allowance at Colonial two weeks earlier, finished second. Streep Street, a 5-year-old gelding making his first start on turf and racing for the first time since last September, completed the trifecta at 45-1. Only three tickets were sold on the winning combination.

* The switch to a summer meet has resulted in booming business. Tuesday's handle surpassed $1 million for the seventh straight program. Through nine days, total handle is up 25 percent at $10.38 million. Ontrack handle is up 19 percent, and attendance has risen 74 percent.

* Although Clayton Beck, Colonial's racing secretary, had initially planned to offer a 60-40 ratio of turf to dirt races, 82 of the first 99 races (83 percent) at the meet have been run on grass. The large number of turf races has resulted in deep fields and some large payoffs. Although favorites are winning at a 37 percent clip, the average payoff has been $13.12.

- Joe DeVivo


When entries failed to fill last week for Monday's program, Fairmount decided to cut back to three-day racing weeks through Labor Day and raise purses $1,000 across the board.

The track has been involved in a year long battle to pass House Bill 1069 in the state legislature, which would give Fairmount 80 percent of the revenue generated by nighttime simulcasting wagers made at the track. Under current law, the money in question goes to harness racing in the state, which Fairmount deleted from its annual calender at the end of 1999.

HB 1069 passed the house and senate May 25 and awaits the signature of Gov. George Ryan. Meanwhile, Fairmount has $5.4 million held in escrow, a purse structure of merely $50,000 a day, and horsemen shipping to other tracks to race their horses.

* In 1999 Raise a Count was among the national leaders with 10 wins. Last year, however, he fell on hard times and was given a long vacation. Still, in his first three starts this season Raise a Count did not fire racing against mid-level claimers. Trainer Sue Irion made the decision to drop him to $3,000 on June 5 and it appears a drop in class was just what the 6-year-old gelding needed. Raise a Count won via disqualification that day and has added back-to-back wins since then, most recently in starter allowance company on Friday night.

- Rod Peck

Great Lakes Downs

MUSKEGON, Mich. - Jockey Terry Houghton rode 16 winners last week, pushing his total to 106 at the Great Lakes Downs meet.

Friday the 13th was a lucky day for Houghton, as he booted home five winners that evening, the best showing for a rider at this meet. He followed that with four-baggers on Sunday and Monday. Houghton is riding at a 27 percent winning clip, with nearly 60 percent of his mounts in the money.

James Jackson, a constant in the trainers' standings at old Detroit Race Course, made his first Michigan appearance this year when he brought in four horses this last weekend and won three races.

Jackson saddled Golden Cinema to win on Sunday evening. Born to Dance and Brave All the Way were winners on Monday's card.

Jackson's runners were not overlooked, as all (including his third-place finisher) were odds-on choices in the wagering.

- C. A. Shoemaker

Louisiana Downs

BOSSIER CITY, La. - Work continues here in preparation for the arrival of slot machines in the near future. Construction is nearly complete on the second floor, which has been undergoing renovation the last couple of months.

Ray Tromba, the track's general manager, said Wednesday, "We are still on target to open that area by July 30, if not sooner," pointing out that carpet was being laid on the second floor this week.

Management's plan is to shift racing operations gradually up one floor in order to begin an extensive remodeling for slot machines. Tromba said that they hope to keep the first floor open as long as possible.

"We are in a bit of dilemma," said Tromba of the changes. "We don't want to spread ourselves too thin with mutuel clerks and concessions on both floors, but we realize that a lot of our patrons like to be on the ground level. At the same time, if progress on this project is to continue to move forward, we know we will have to close the entire first floor at some point. We are going to do our best to keep everyone happy."

- Jeff Taylor

Yavapai Downs

PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. - Jockey E. A. Gomez won two of the three stakes run at Yavapai Downs on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday.

On Sunday, Gomez and heavily favored Stormy Ambition ($3.40) went wire to wire to win the $10,000 Prescott Valley Stakes. Hemandan finished three lengths back in second, with longshot Trevally in third.

On Monday, Gomez rallied Leaven ($14.40) to victory in a three-horse photo in the $10,500 Les Mackin Handicap. Favorites Golden Zodiac and Vaclav finished second and third, a nose and a neck back.

In Saturday's $20,000 Desert Classic Derby for 3-year-old Quarter Horses, Bum Belle Bee pulled a $49 upset, defeating Billy Bob Ryon by a half-length. Under jockey O.A. Martinez, Bum Belle Bee ran the 350 yards in 17.70 seconds.

Handle for the inaugural meet at Yavapai Downs, which replaced Prescott Downs, is up by 13 percent over the Prescott meet last year. Attendance is up 20 percent.