10/16/2007 11:00PM

Haynes's passion for the game paying off

EmailAs a college student, Jan Haynes would make regular trips to Louisiana Downs to play the horses. Now, she owns some of the quickest ones at the track. Haynes has a 38-horse stable that long ago locked up this year's owner title at Louisiana Downs, which closes its meet Saturday.

The title will be the first for Haynes, a wife, mother, real estate investor, and former nurse who claimed her initial horse in 2000. She has built a formidable barn since then, and her 60 wins from 215 starters so far this year rank her 17th among all owners in wins in North America.

In addition to Louisiana Downs, Haynes had a good meet this year at Oaklawn Park, where she tied for second in the owner standings, and at Lone Star Park, where she tied for third. She will race next at Delta Downs, with her primary trainer, Jorge Lara, bringing a division of his stable to the Vinton, La., track that opens Friday.

Haynes, 43, has grown her stable by claiming horses. She constantly scans entries for possible acquisitions, and when she finds something worth dropping a claim for, she calls Lara.

"I have to have something going all the time and I always want to learn," she said.

"When I was in graduate school in Shreveport, I went over to the track and started betting the horses and I loved it. I'm still having a great time. When it gets to the point where it's not fun, I'll stop. But I can't imagine that being the case. It's just a great sport."

Haynes is a native of Ruston, La., but now lives in Dallas. She claimed her first horse for $25,000. He ran for a claiming price of $35,000 one start later, won, and was claimed. "I was hooked," she said.

Haynes's operation has grown so much that her husband, Andrew, suggested she take flying lessons so she could attend the races when she wanted. She did, and at times has been known to fly Lara and jockey Carlos Gonzalez to a track for a stakes.

This Sunday Haynes will have Wheaton Home running in the $75,000 Remington Park Sprint Championship.

Other top runners in her barn include Tiger Monarch, Who's Zary Now, Lucky Woman, and Illegal Ticket. And on Friday, Haynes has Finest Top, who has won her last three races by a combined 20 lengths, in the featured eighth race at Louisiana Downs.

Field shaping up for Oklahoma Derby

The field for Sunday's $300,000 Oklahoma Derby was starting to come together Wednesday morning, with Super Derby winner Going Ballistic expected to start as the favorite in the 1 1/8-mile race at Remington. Entries will be taken on Friday.

"I'm thinking we'll probably wind up with about eight," said Fred Hutton, racing secretary at Remington.

Others he said could start include Reporting for Duty, Forty Acres, Gold Wonder, and Sumac. Those he considers possible include Strong City, Greeley's Conquest, Skim the Till, and Slapout.

Reporting for Duty will vie for favoritism. He last raced on June 2, finishing third in the Grade 2 Ohio Derby.

The Oklahoma Derby is one of four stakes worth a cumulative $575,000 at Remington on Sunday.

Back to dirt for Wrenice

Wrenice, who stumbled badly at the start of the $45,000 Selma at five furlongs on turf at Retama Park last Saturday night, came out of the race okay, according to her trainer, Randy Mayfield. The Selma was Wrenice's turf debut, and the multiple stakes winner did not appear to handle the surface, said Mayfield.

"Really, when she got up and got to running down the lane, she just went through the motions," he said. "Dirt's her lick. I'm going to regroup and come back Champions Day at Sam Houston."

Wrenice will be pointed for the $50,000 Yellow Rose at six furlongs on the main track there Dec. 1.

* "The First Saturday in May" will open the Hot Springs, Ark., film festival that starts Friday. Produced by brothers John and Brad Hennegan, the documentary followed several top prospects on the 2006 trail to the Kentucky Derby. To see the film's trailer, go to www.thefirstsaturdayinmay.com.