08/28/2016 9:20AM

Jockey Hernandez sweeps Evangeline's closing-night stakes

Coady Photography
Colby Hernandez and Country Candy cross the finish line to win the Princess at Evangeline Downs on Saturday.

Evangeline Downs leading rider Colby Hernandez swept the track’s closing night stakes on Saturday, when Country Candy set the pace and prevailed in the $60,000 Princess and Thegreatcollection shot up the rail to win the $60,000 Prince.

The races were for 2-year-olds at six furlongs; both were run on a sloppy, sealed track.

Country Candy ($4.20) became a stakes winner when she held off a late bid from Chases Dixie Belle for a half-length decision. Country Candy shot to the lead at the start of the race and took the field through fractions of 22.52 seconds for the opening quarter and 46.57 for the half-mile before covering the distance in 1:13.25.

Hernandez was aboard for Keene Thoroughbreds and trainer J.R. Caldwell.

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“They said she had tactical speed, let her run away from there, and she rated on the lead,” Hernandez said. “She’s a nice filly.”

Country Candy is a daughter of Intimidator and was bred in Texas. She had placed in a pair of stakes at Churchill Downs and Prairie Meadows leading up to the Princess.

Thegreatcollection ($17.40) improved his career record to 2 for 2 when he rallied from next to last for a 4 1/4-length win over Dixieland Native. Thegreatcollection had won a $16,000 maiden claiming race at Gulfstream in his career debut Aug. 7.

Thegreatcollection, who lagged behind the fractions of 22.58 seconds and 46.95 put up by Shacklefords Storm, went on to cover the distance in 1:12.81. The race went as the ninth, while the Princess was the 11th on a 12-race program Saturday.

Efren Loza Jr., trains Thegreatcollection for Kathleen Amaya and Raffaele Centofanti. Thegreatcollection is by Saint Anddan and was bred in Florida.

O Karl Broberg was the meet’s leading trainer. The leading owner was Red Rose Racing.