11/10/2002 12:00AM

Jenny's Prospector wins Hoosier Debutante

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Anderson, Ind. - Jenny's Prospector made her stakes debut a huge success with a 1 3/4 length win in Saturday's evening's $103,700 Hoosier Debutante on a night that catered to the ladies.

Ridden top apprentice John McKee, Jenny's Prospector saved ground through the turn of the six furlong event and ran down pacesetter Wildcat Annie through midstretch to score in 1:11.50 over a fast track. Hurry Home, tracking the pace in second through much of the race, gained second, a neck in front of Wildcat Annie.

Trained by William Connelly, Jenny's Prospector returned $21.80 as an outside choice in the field of seven. Midnight Cry and Hunter's West were both declared earlier in the day. The $62,220 winner's share boosted the earnings of Jenny's Prospector to more than $80,000 while making her fifth career start.

The Debutante was the lead-in to Hoosier's second annual Ladies' Night where Rhonda Collins again collected the honors in a series of five races for female riders.

Collins fired the first shot with a $4.60 win aboard Yukon's Sugar in the fifth race then followed up with a second place finish aboard Must Be True in the sixth. She was back in the winner's circle in the eighth race aboard Command Power ($26.80) which clinched the title going into the final race of the challenge.

"It's overwhelming," said Collins in a winner's circle interview. "A lot of these women have achieved things I can only dream about at this point."

Along with Collins, female riders from the midwest included local riders Cindy Noll, Joddie Fortner and Beth Butler. Also competing were Patricia Cooksey, Greta Kuntzweiler, Mary Doser, Jennifer Bramblett, Cindy Medina and Bonnie Castaneda.

Patricia Cooksey, second on the all-time list of female riders to Julie Krone, collected her first victory since returning to riding earlier this year after battling breast cancer. Cooksey guided Nightingale to a $21 win in the seventh race.

"It's a real thrill to be back," Cooksey said between races. "it's a thrill to be back in the winner's circle. Just being here tonight really means a lot."