08/22/2006 11:00PM

Reapingtherewards primed for Miss Ohio


Reapingtherewards appears to have a slight advantage over nine other Ohio-bred 2-year-old fillies in Friday's $40,000 Miss Ohio Stakes at Thistledown.

A daughter of Parents' Reward, Reapingtherewards has made five career starts at four different racetracks and won a maiden race here on Aug. 11 by 6 1/2 lengths going the same six-furlong distance as the Miss Ohio. On July 30, she finished third, beaten four lengths, in the 5 1/2-furlong Tah Dah Stakes at River Downs.

Reapingtherewards, trained by Tim Hamm, began her career with a rallying second going 4 1/2 furlongs at Mountaineer Race Track on May 28, then shipped to Churchill Downs and was never a factor with $50,000 maiden claimers while racing racing very greenly. In her next race, at River Downs, she bobbled at the start and rallied to be beaten three-quarters of a length.

Reapingtherewards has improved with extra distance, and if she retains her form she will be hard to beat on Friday. Irwin Rosendo will ride at 115 pounds.

The Miguel Feliciano-trained entry of Pyrite Apex and Formal But Pink should provide the toughest competition. Pryite Apex won her debut by 3 1/2 lengths here on Aug. 3. She has the speed to set the pace.

Formal But Pink's lone start came at Mountaineer, where she dueled for the lead into the stretch before finishing third on Aug. 4. Ricardo Feliciano is named on both halves of the entry.

Another who merits strong consideration is Mini Mom, who is coupled with Reapingtherewards. Filmer Munaylla has the mount.


Super Call's nose victory in last Saturday's $15,575 Van Berg Derby at the Columbus Races provided one of the meet's most rousing finishes as three horses hit the wire nearly together in the mile and 70-yard race.

With Dennis Collins aboard, Super Call rallied from off the pace to reach the dueling pair of Thoughtuwasatoad and Indigo in deep stretch. With the trio separated by mere noses in the field of five, Super Call just got up for his third consecutive win.

Super Call, trained by Lalita Ontiveros, arrived in Nebraska following a maiden win for a $10,000 tag at Lone Star Park on June 24. He handled entry-level allowance company by 1 3/4 lengths in his local debut on Aug. 5 and followed that up with a win in his stakes debut for owner Larry Gourneau Jr.

* Collins moved to the top of the rider standings with three triples over four days and leads R.D. Williams, 27-22, as the meet heads into its final three weekends.

Williams was shaken up Saturday night during the seventh race when even-money favorite Westfest bobbled at the start and threw him off balance. He got hung up in a stirrup and tried to regain his seat for nearly 100 yards before getting untangled and hitting the ground hard. Williams tried riding Sunday and Monday but took off his mounts midway through both cards. He is expected back at full strength this weekend.

- Bill Hodtwalker


Few in Louisiana need to be reminded that it was a year ago this week that Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. Rita followed a month later, and all of a sudden the state saw its functioning racetracks reduced from four to two with the damage suffered by Fair Grounds in New Orleans and Delta Downs in the southwestern part of the state.

As a result of these storms and a willingness to cooperate rarely seen in this business, Evangeline Downs has now conducted racing virtually non-stop for about 17 months. It was quite a change for a track that, in recent years, was accustomed to have live racing only from April to early September.

Evangeline's marathon season began in early April 2005. That meet, interrupted for six weeks while the new track's surface was reconfigured, was extended from early to late September.

A new Quarter Horse meeting, mandated by the arrival of slot machines at Evangeline in late 2004, came next with scarcely a day off. A second Quarter Horse season followed, inherited from Louisiana Downs so that the north Louisiana oval could host the transplanted Fair Grounds meeting.

Following the conclusion of the second Quarter Horse meeting in early December, Evangeline announced that it would take over the traditional winter dates lost to Delta Downs as that track rebuilt from the hurricanes. That meeting concluded a week before Evangeline's regular 2006 season got under way in late March. The current stand comes to an end on Labor Day.

The time off will be brief, however, as the fall Quarter Horse meeting gets under way on Sept. 20 and runs through Nov. 25. Following that meeting, David Yount, head of racing operations, has indicated that work should get under way on the long awaited turf course. Its opening was one of the casualties of the busy hurricane season of 2005.

- Jeff Taylor

Great Lakes

Weatherstorm solidified his standing as the top 3-year-old colt or gelding in Michigan when he drew off for nearly a six-length win in Tuesday's $50,000 Dowling Stakes at Great Lakes Downs. Owned by Marion Gorham and trained by her brother Robert Gorham, Weatherstorm won for the fourth consecutive time. Earlier in the meet he won the Spartan and Lansing stakes. Last year he won the Michigan Sire Stakes and the 2-year-old state championship. Leading rider Terry Houghton has been aboard Weatherstorm in his five starts this year.

Weatherstorm was sent off at 2-5 in the Dowling. Longshot Heza Hemi finished second, while Prince Nick was third. Weatherstorm completed the mile in 1:43 4/5.

Houghton also rode Nell's Enjoyment to win the $50,000 Ann Arbor Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

- C.A. Shoemaker

Lone Star

The pitter-patter of little hooves is filling up the backstretch at Lone Star Park. The track is the site of the Fasig-Tipton Texas summer yearling sale, which will be held on Monday and Tuesday.

Fasig-Tipton has cataloged 439 yearlings to the sale, which will be conducted in a pavilion in the stable area. The first 218 hip numbers will be sold Monday, and the remaining lots on Tuesday. Each session starts at 10 a.m. Central.

A host of stallions are represented by offspring, from Alphabet Soup to Zavata. There are also a broad base of consignors setting up shop at Lone Star.

Fasig-Tipton officials said from a regional standpoint, the number of Louisiana-breds on offer in this sale is almost equal to the number of Texas-breds. Officials also said there are a good number of yearlings available from New Mexico and Oklahoma.

Lone Star has been dark since closing out its Thoroughbred meet in July. The track will open for a Quarter Horse meet in October.

- Mary Rampellini

River Downs

The River Downs meet is traditionally divided into two sessions every year, with separate jockey and trainer titles awarded at the end of each. And while there may be a different leading rider for each session, there is no dispute this year as to which rider has been the most dominant overall.

With a little more than a week remaining in the season, jockey Rodney Prescott had 99 wins at River this year, 40 more than his closest pursuer, Greg Schaefer. Prescott padded his lead Sunday by booting home three winners, though he had to settle for second aboard Sir Traver in the day's feature, a $19,200 allowance on the turf, which was won by The Potters Hand.

Through Tuesday, Edgar Paucar held a three-win lead over Prescott for the current session, which began on June 25.

The trainers race is much tighter. Through Tuesday, Rinzy Nocero had a commanding 17-9 lead over Larry Holt for the current session title, but held a slim 24-23 lead over Holt for overall wins since the season commenced April 14.

* Less than two weeks after pulling a 27-1 upset in the Queen City Oaks, Fight Girl is back in at River Downs in Saturday's featured $15,000 allowance at a mile and 70 yards. Unlike the Oaks, however, the field is not restricted to 3-year-old fillies, and Fight Girl will have her hands full facing older, more accomplished fillies and mares.

Among those likely to go favored are Pullman Lady, a stakes winner at Mountaineer last year; Tiffany Touch, a multiple allowance winner at Aqueduct last winter; and Azidiscount, a winner at this level at River on July 9.

- Vance Hanson