04/26/2013 6:35PM

Keeneland: Ramseys, Maker, Rosario do it again as Dark Cove wins Elkhorn

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Keeneland/Coady Photography
Dark Cove, with Joel Rosario aboard, runs away from the field, winning the Elkhorn by 4 1/4 lengths.

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Putting the proverbial icing on the cake, the owner-trainer-jockey team that dominated the 16-day spring meet at Keeneland had a final hurrah Friday when Dark Cove, exiting claiming races, ran off to a 4 1/4-length victory in the closing-day feature, the Grade 2, $150,000 Elkhorn Stakes.

Joel Rosario was aboard Dark Cove when the 6-year-old horse sped away from the opposition after turning for home in the 1 1/2-mile turf race, not only further extending his record for wins by a jockey at a Keeneland spring meet, but also those for Ken and Sarah Ramsey as owners and Mike Maker as trainer.

Dark Cove returned $19.80 after finishing in 2:30.84 over a firm course, with Side Road, a 23-1 shot, up late for second over Sky Blazer in a field of 11 older horses. Ioya Bigtime, the 5-2 favorite, faded to ninth after setting the pace, while Forte Dei Marmi did not complete the course after incurring an injury that was not life-threatening.

The Elkhorn marked the 24th of what would soon become 25 winners at the meet for the Ramseys, doubling the former record of 12 that they previously shared with two other entities, including the vaunted Calumet Farm in 1941. Remarkably, the same owner-trainer team also won the only remaining race of the meet when Tuscan Treasure captured the 10th race Friday as a 6-1 shot under Alan Garcia.

"I can't believe we doubled it," said Ken Ramsey, who said his only regret was that his wife, who has suffered serious health issues in recent years, became hospitalized as of Thursday. "It's been a great, great run."

The Ramseys were awarded a gold tray by Keeneland for a milestone in graded-stakes wins at their hometown track.

For Maker, the Elkhorn also was his 24th win of 25 at the meet. Two races earlier, Maker, a 44-year-old Michigan native, already had set a new Keeneland record for victories by a trainer at a single meet with Brandys Secret, a 6-year-old gray mare owned in partnership by personal friends from Louisville, Ky., Jimmy Shircliffe and Harvey Diamond.

Maker broke the record of 22 set at the 1989 fall meet by his former boss and mentor, D. Wayne Lukas. Maker already had set the Keeneland record for a spring meet several days earlier with his 17th winner.

"It's a real honor to do this," said Maker.

Rosario, riding regularly for the first time at a Kentucky track, won 37 races to break the former spring mark of 32 set in 1990 by Randy Romero. The all-time mark of 45 was set at the 1991 fall meet by Pat Day.

The $2 exacta (6-3) paid $378.60; the $1 trifecta (6-3-1) returned $1,066.50; and the 10-cent superfecta (6-3-1-2) was worth $675.26.