09/01/2009 11:00PM

Jockey, trainer races come down to the wire


Both the jockey and trainer races are wide open as Columbus runs a four-day weekend to close out its meet.

Trainers Rick Bogdanovich and Mark Lemburg have been neck and neck through the season and are tied at nine wins each. Seven-time defending champion David Anderson and Kim Veerhusen are next with seven wins. The top 10 in the trainer standings are separated by just four wins.

The jockey race is much the same as Damon Leeds and Jesus Ponce enter the weekend tied at 18. Armando Martinez, third with 16 wins, will sit out a three-day suspension Friday through Sunday while apprentice Ashley Dill is within range at 15 wins.

Miss Missile is expected to face the boys in the Labor Day Stakes on closing day. Trainer Charles Smith has also nominated the multiple stakes winner to the Bill Callihan Stakes on Saturday but he also has Lady Countdown, a 3-year-old stakes winner, nominated to that spot. Miss Missile has won 4 of her 6 starts this year, including the Bold Accent and Al Swihart stakes at Fonner Park.

First Class Brass, the two-time defending champion in the Labor Day Stakes, and stablemate The Batista Bomb, have both been nominated by trainer Kelli Martinez. Also nominated is Coble Avenue, a 3-year-old trained by Robert Mitzner who has won the Hall of Fame Stakes and Van Berg Derby in his two starts here this year.

Post time for Saturday has been moved to 2 p.m. from its standard evening slot to avoid going up against the football season opener for the Nebraska Cornhuskers at 6 p.m. The pay-per-view game will be shown in the clubhouse as simulcasts continue.