09/08/2013 9:34PM

Emerald Downs: Stryker Phd delivers as favorite in Muckleshoot Tribal Classic

Erin Palmer/Emerald Downs Photos
Stryker Phd and jockey Debbie Hoonan win the Muckleshoot Tribal Classic by 3 1/4 lengths.

AUBURN, Wash. – After four consecutive runner-up finishes in added-money events, Stryker Phd finally kicked down the door in a stakes race Sunday at Emerald Downs, winning the $47,750 Muckleshoot Tribal Classic going away.

Though he had just one career victory from 10 starts coming into the race, Stryker Phd was made the 4-5 favorite in a field of six statebred older horses and ran to his backing, covering 1 1/16 miles in 1:40.99 and winning by 3 1/4 lengths. Jebrica, the 3-2 second choice, finished a distant third, 8 1/2 lengths behind the winner.

A late-running 4-year-old by Bertrando and from the Smart Strike mare Striking Scholar, Stryker Phd had flirted with victory in each of his five previous starts at the meeting. After a third-place finish in a first-level allowance sprint in his 2013 debut, he closed strongly to be second in four consecutive starts, including the Grade 3 Longacres Mile on Aug. 18.

But Stryker Phd ($3.80) left little doubt about the outcome Sunday, surging to the lead past the three-sixteenths pole and cruising home under regular rider Debbie Hoonan.

Polish Dollar finished second, followed by Jebrica, I Keep Saying, Kooky Saluki, and early leader Memphis Beach.

Trained by Margo Lloyd for Jim and Mona Hour of Bellevue, Wash., Stryker Phd earned $25,000, pushing his lifetime ledger to $124,466 from 11 starts. Lloyd said Stryker Phd might start next at Golden Gate Fields this fall, likely in an allowance race on turf, before being turned out for the year.

Madam Pele wins Comcast SportsNet Stakes

In a race lacking a previous stakes winner, Madam Pele proved best in the $50,000 Comcast SportsNet Stakes for statebred 3-year-old fillies.

A daughter of Salt Lake from the Smart Strike mare Striking Scholar, Madam Pele is a half-sister to Stryker Phd. Madam Pele ran one mile under Juan Gutierrez in 1:35.69 and paid $6 as the second favorite in a field of eight.

Trained by Jim Penney for Zach and Beth Correa of Enumclaw, Wash., Madam Pele was making her first appearance at Emerald Downs in 2013. She had spent the balance of the year in Northern California, winning a maiden race at Pleasanton in June and finishing third in a starter allowance on grass at Golden Gate Fields in her last start before shipping north to Emerald Downs.

Madam Pele has two victories from 10 career starts, and the $25,000 winner’s share increased her lifetime earnings to $70,167.

Madam Pele raced in third through the early going behind pace rivals Say Say and Holy Dazzle before taking command around the second turn. She won by 3 1/2 lengths, with Say Say second, more than five lengths clear of Holy Dazzle, who was followed by 7-5 favorite Beautranda, Hetty, Premo Jewel, Lumen Took It, and Business Venture.