05/08/2005 11:00PM

'Golden' victory for Simard

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CALGARY, Alberta - The spotlight was on 3-year-olds here last weekend and Golden Hunt was first to strike in Saturday's $50,000 President's Handicap at Stampede Park.

Golden Hunt, a Florida-bred gelding by Gold Alert, made the lead from post 7 under Real Simard and never looked back. He set rapid fractions of 22 seconds and 44.80 and held off Blackjack Willy by a length, completing the six furlongs in 1:10.40.

The victory completed a three-win day for Simard, who said Golden Hunt is "one of the quickest horses I've ever been on." Golden Hunt had equaled the four-furlong course record of 43.80 on opening day.

Golden Hunt paid $7.20 to win Sunday while running coupled with stablemate Dakota Duke, who finished third after an overland journey.

Blackjack Willy did not switch leads in the stretch and is one to consider next out in the one-mile Hoofprint on My Heart here May 28.

Vancouver invader Notis Otis, the favorite in the field of eight, never fired and finished sixth under Chris Loseth.

Rickey Walcott employed a different strategy to capture Sunday's $50,000 Mount Royal aboard 3-year-old filly Rumbeau Ruckus, rallying four wide from fourth at the head of the lane to run down R Lucinda in deep stretch. Rumbeau Ruckus, who won by a length, covered six furlongs in 1:11.40 and gave trainer Tim Rycroft his first stakes victory.