04/05/2008 11:00PM

Scrappy Roo wins Connally Turf Cup by a head


Scrappy Roo's affinity for the Sam Houston Race Park turf course reached a pinnacle Saturday night, when he won his fifth straight race in the Grade 3, $168,500 Connally Breeders' Cup Turf. Scrappy Roo won by a head over Going Ballistic. It was another neck back in third to Eighteenthofmarch.

Student Council, who was favored in a rare turf start, finished seventh after dueling for much of the mile and an eighth turf race with Scrappy Roo. The pair raced through fractions of 25.51 seconds for the opening quarter, 50.56 seconds for a half-mile and 1:15.20 for six furlongs. Scrappy Roo went on to cover the distance in 1:51.65.

Paul Nolan rode Scrappy Roo ($14.80), who races for Tawana Cantrell and is trained by John Locke. He was unbeaten during the Sam Houston meet, which closed Saturday. Scrappy Roo's streak began with a first-level allowance win in December. He proceeded to win a $25,000 claiming race, a $35,000 optional claimer and the $50,000 Tomball. All of his wins this meet came on turf.

Scrappy Roo earned $90,000 for his Connally victory to improve his earnings to $183,280. He has now won 8 of 15 starts. Scrappy Roo is a son of Roo Art.

The Connally was the richest race of the meet and one of three stakes run on the closing night card at Sam Houston. In the $50,000 Sam Houston Turf Sprint Cup, the

mare Smitty's Sunshine ($6.60) rallied for a half-length win over Golden Hare. The victory pushed her earnings past $500,000. Eddie Martin Jr. rode Smitty's Sunshine for Roger Smith and trainer Morris Nicks.

Barbette ($19) was a neck winner over Pleasantly Blessed in the $50,000 Jersey Lily. Quincy Hamilton rode Barbette for James Gallagher and trainer Danny Pish.

* Attendance ontrack was 9,223. All-sources handle on the 10-race card was $2,280,262.