07/20/2009 12:00AM

Minnesota Mafia edges Seasahm in Princess Elaine


SHAKOPEE, Minn. - Owner-breeder Camelia Casby was rooting for a dead heat but settled for the straight exacta when Minnesota Mafia edged rival Seasahm in the $50,000 Princess Elaine Stakes at Canterbury Park on Saturday.

Seven older fillies and mares contested the Princess Elaine for Minnesota-breds, and Seasahm and Sahm Sweetheart were sent postward as the joint 2-1 favorites. Bella Notte set the early pace but was tracked closely by Seasahm. As the field turned into the stretch, Seasahm moved to challenge the pacesetter but was challenged from the outside by Sahm Sweetheart. Jockey Juan Rivera had Minnesota Mafia in full gear and came through close quarters to split the favorites in the final furlong, prevailing by 1 1/4 lengths on the wire over Seasahm. Bella Notte held for third, a half-length behind Seasahm. The winner completed the 1 1/16 miles over firm going in 1:42.67.

Gary Scherer trains Minnesota Mafia for Casby, who also bred Seasahm in partnership with Carol Curtis. This was the first stakes victory for Minnesota Mafia, a 4-year-old filly by Yonaguska who has now improved her record over the Canterbury turf to three wins from three starts and returned $9.80 as the third choice in the wagering.