09/21/2011 2:21PM

Remington Park: Antioch Diamond in fine form going into Turf Sprint


Antioch Diamond won all four of his Remington Park starts in 2010, and is in similar form at the Oklahoma City track this year. He opened the current meet with an allowance win earlier this month, and will seek to build upon the effort Friday night when he makes his second start of the local season in the $50,000 Remington Park Turf Sprint.

The five-furlong race for Oklahoma-breds highlights a card that includes a mile turf allowance that drew stakes winners Going Ballistic, Red Lead, Coyote Legend, Strategic Leader, and J J’s Indy.

Antioch Diamond had a meet to remember last year. In a streak that ran from August to November, he won two allowances, the Remington Park Turf Sprint and the $50,000 Silver Goblin. This meet, the horse has been just as sharp. Antioch Diamond was up for a nose win in a five-furlong allowance prep Sept. 3, in what was his first out since July.

"The last race, we let him come from just off the pace, to have something to run down, and he just barely got it done," said Aaron Box, who trains Antioch Diamond.

"He has 11 wins out of 23 starts, so he has sort of an innate ability to find the wire."

Friday night, Antioch Diamond might have to use different tactics than those employed for his last start. He drew the rail after breaking from post 6 in the allowance, but he has had front-running success in the past. Antioch Diamond is also a good gate horse, tending to break sharply, said Box.

Cliff Berry has the mount on Antioch Diamond, who has been a regular in the Remington Park Turf Sprint.

"This race has been our goal three years in a row," said Box.

Antioch Diamond first ran in the Remington Park Turf Sprint in 2009, and finished a troubled fifth. He then scored by a head last year.

The eight-horse field Friday night includes Momma’s Badnews, who was second in the allowance prep, and Ti Township, who is cutting back in distance off a third-place finish in the $50,000 Red Earth at 7 1/2 furlongs on turf at Remington on Aug. 19.