03/15/2013 1:52PM

Fair Grounds notes: Mark Valeski breezes for New Orleans Handicap

Lynn Roberts
Mark Valeski, with Rosie Napravnik up, wins the Mineshaft.

NEW ORLEANS - Grade 3 Mineshaft winner Mark Valeski, being prepared by trainer Larry Jones for the Grade 2 New Orleans Handicap on March 30, worked a half-mile Wednesday in 47.20 seconds.

"We let him stretch his legs a little bit," Jones said. "We'll work him again Tuesday and the following Monday and be ready to roll."

Bourbon Courage, headed to the New Orleans Handicap, has trained well at the Fair Grounds since finishing second in the Grade 1 Donn at Gulfstream Park, said Evan Downing, assistant to trainer Kellyn Gorder.

"He's really good," Downing said "He's sharp, and he's happy."

Coyote shows up on the infield

While horses were training last Sunday morning, a coyote was watching from the infield.
"He didn't bother anybody," clocker Billy Pettingill said. "Everyone was taking pictures with their telephones. It's unusual to see a coyote in the confines of the city."

Trainer Neil Pessin said that the coyote was "maybe a little smaller than a shepherd."
"The horses didn't pay any attention at all," Pessin said. "The people were looking at him more than the horses were."

Alan Love, an outrider, said that coyote tracks had been seen on the dirt track, but a coyote hadn't been spotted until Sunday. "I think what confused him was the time change," Love said regarding the recent shift to standard time. "They're smart animals."

Workers in a cart shooed the coyote out the back gate, Pettingill said.
The coyote possibly came from City Park, not far from the Fair Grounds.

Propelleroneway to Appalachian

The 3-year-old filly Propelleroneway, who routed first-level optional claiming rivals on the turf March 8, will run next in the Grade 3 Appalachian at Keeneland, trainer Andrew McKeever said. That mile turf race will be run April 18.

"I like the filly a lot," McKeever said. "She was a little rank in her early races. Now she's settled a lot."

Daisy Devine, who also is headed to Keeneland, where she will run in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley on April 13, had her final Fair Grounds workout Tuesday. She worked a half-mile in 48.40 seconds.

"Best she worked all year," McKeever said.

Crawfish boil to benefit rescue cause

A crawfish boil from 5 7 p.m. Monday in the Fair Grounds grandstand will benefit the Louisiana Horse Rescue Association. Tickets cost $25.

The movie "T-Galop: A Louisiana Horse Story," a documentary that won the Louisiana feature film award at last year's New Orleans Film Festival, will be shown at 7 p.m.