05/10/2013 12:07PM

Horsemen’s Park: Diamond Joe stars in Who Doctor Who Handicap


OMAHA, Neb. – Diamond Joe, fresh off a win in the $75,000 Bossleman/Gus Fonner Stakes at Fonner Park, will be the center of attention as Horsemen’s Park concludes its three-day festival of racing with the $30,000-added Who Doctor Who Handicap going as the fifth of six races on the Sunday card.

Diamond Joe has earned mention in the same breath with other powerful statebred runners as Who Doctor Who, Amadevil, Bold Accent, Ogataul, and his sire, Dazzling Falls, who still reigns as the top Nebraska-bred earner of all time with earnings of just less than $1 million. Like Dazzling Falls, Diamond Joe is trained by Omaha native Chuck Turco and has carved out a career mark of 13-5-0 from 21 starts and earnings of $226,029.

On Sunday, he faces a short field of four others in the one-mile test for older Nebraska-breds, with Jake Olesiak aboard the likely odds-on favorite. Under the handicap conditions of the race, Diamond Joe carries a career-high 128 pounds while spotting the field 10 to 15 pounds. Diamond Joe has won three of his four starts this year at Fonner Park, including the Ogataul, Tondi, and Gus Fonner stakes. His lone defeat came by a neck to Unsaddled Glory in the Dowd Mile, where he dug back in but could not hold off the late charge of Unsaddled Glory.

Bach’s Homebrew will likely pose the biggest threat to Diamond Joe in the stretch as they meet for the fourth time this year. Bach’s Homebrew, trained by Larry Staroscik, is a multiple stakes winner with a good late kick but will need help from someone to soften up the favorite in the early going. Luis Ranilla will ride at 118 pounds.

The Mother’s Day card also will feature the “Gallop for the Cure” purse in the third race, with all runners wearing pink saddlecloths autographed by celebrities such as former Nebraska football great Tommie Frazier, current head coach Bo Pelini, and Hall of Fame trainer Jack Van Berg. Following the race, the saddlecloths will be auctioned off, with the proceeds benefitting the Susan G. Komen Nebraska Foundation.