08/15/2002 11:00PM

Ferndale: Black Ruby runs

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FERNDALE, Calif. - The Humboldt County Marathon Handicap, at 1 5/8 miles northern California's longest summer stakes event, will share the limelight with the mule legend Black Ruby and the Ferndale Arabian Stakes as the Humboldt Fair concludes its race meeting Sunday.

Black Ruby, perhaps the biggest racing celebrity in northern California, will bid for her 59th career victory and a four-peat in the $6,500 Cream City Mule Stakes at 660 yards around the turn.

Black Ruby, 10, has captured 23 of her previous 24 races, is 58 of 73 lifetime, has earned a world record $175,000, and has been acclaimed the Secretariat of her breed. She received a standing ovation from fans when she paraded between races Friday afternoon.

"Ruby seems to just love it here in Ferndale, and the fans love her," said co-owner Sonny McPherson, "and we have been fortunate to win the Cream City the past three years."

Ironman Dehere will be bidding to join Ready Standard (1958-59), Molokai (1966-67) and Ebonist (1999-2000) as the only back-to-back winners of the Marathon, where horses cross the finish line four times.

And he appears to hold a huge class advantage over his rivals, despite shouldering 126 pounds and spotting rivals from nine to 11 pounds. Leading rider Jim Burns will again be aboard Ironman Dehere, who rallied for a thrilling half-length decision over Twothousandegrees in last year's Marathon.

The Ironman was a fast-closing third in the five furlong Eel River Sprint last Sunday, which appeared to be the perfect prep for Sunday's Marathon.

Boeagle, already a multiple stakes winner this summer, also appears to be a short-priced favorite in the Ferndale Arabian Stakes, slated at seven furlongs.

Post time for the nine-race "Getaway Day" program will be 1:55 p.m.

for entries.

Subscribers: to purchase Past Performances.

Non-subscribers: Click here to purchase Past Performances.FERNDALE, Calif. - The Humboldt County Marathon Handicap, at 1 5/8 miles northern California's longest summer stakes event, will share the limelight with the mule legend Black Ruby and the Ferndale Arabian Stakes as the Humboldt Fair concludes its race meeting Sunday.

Black Ruby, perhaps the biggest racing celebrity in northern California, will bid for her 59th career victory and a four-peat in the $6,500 Cream City Mule Stakes at 660 yards around the turn.

Black Ruby, 10, has captured 23 of her previous 24 races, is 58 of 73 lifetime, has earned a world record $175,000, and has been acclaimed the Secretariat of her breed. She received a standing ovation from fans when she paraded between races Friday afternoon.

"Ruby seems to just love it here in Ferndale, and the fans love her," said co-owner Sonny McPherson, "and we have been fortunate to win the Cream City the past three years."

Ironman Dehere will be bidding to join Ready Standard (1958-59), Molokai (1966-67) and Ebonist (1999-2000) as the only back-to-back winners of the Marathon, where horses cross the finish line four times.

And he appears to hold a huge class advantage over his rivals, despite shouldering 126 pounds and spotting rivals from nine to 11 pounds. Leading rider Jim Burns will again be aboard Ironman Dehere, who rallied for a thrilling half-length decision over Twothousandegrees in last year's Marathon.

The Ironman was a fast-closing third in the five furlong Eel River Sprint last Sunday, which appeared to be the perfect prep for Sunday's Marathon.

Boeagle, already a multiple stakes winner this summer, also appears to be a short-priced favorite in the Ferndale Arabian Stakes, slated at seven furlongs.

Post time for the nine-race "Getaway Day" program will be 1:55 p.m.

for entries.

Subscribers: to purchase Past Performances.

Non-subscribers: Click here to purchase Past Performances.