07/06/2011 1:13PM

Star Guitar still king of Louisiana-breds


It’s one down and one to go for Star Guitar this summer.

The two-time reigning Louisiana-bred horse of the year captured his third straight Louisiana Showcase Classic last Saturday night at Evangeline Downs against fellow statebreds and now has his sights set on the Evangeline Mile on Aug. 13. Star Guitar has won the last two editions of the Mile, which is for open company. His victory last Saturday ran his local record to a perfect 5 for 5.

“The race is worth $125,000 and he came out of the race the other night in good shape,” said All Stall Jr. trainer of Star Guitar. “It makes sense as he sure likes that racetrack.”

Usually a horse who comes from off the lead, Star Guitar changed tactics in his latest win, controlling the pace under Corey Lanerie.

“He broke well and no one seemed to want the lead, so we ended up there.” Lanerie said. “We were able to just gallop along most of the way. I asked him to run after we turned into the stretch and just gave him four taps with the whip to keep him focused, and he did the rest.”

Stall said he and Lanerie had not planned to go to the front.

“There were a couple of horses in there with the same trainer, and you sometimes can count of one of them playing rabbit, but neither went early so Corey took advantage,” Stall said.

The win was Star Guitar’s 18th from 24 starts. The 6-year-old son of Quiet American has now earned just under $1.3 million for owner and breeder Brittlyn Stable.

Lafayette Stakes moved to August

Joining the Evangeline Mile on the evening of Aug. 13 will be the $100,000 Lafayette Stakes. The one-mile test for 2-year-olds, which will be contested on the turf for the first time, was originally slated for Labor Day, Sept. 5.

“The reason for the switch is two-fold,” said Evangeline racing secretary Coleman Lloyd. “First, we wanted to bolster our signature event, the Evangeline Mile. Moving the Lafayette Stakes to the same night as the Mile will make that event more enticing for out-of-state outfits to ship in, as they will now have two six-figure purses on the same card.

Second, Lloyd said, running the Lafayette earlier in the Evangeline meet will give horses a chance to also run in the Sunny’s Halo at Louisiana Downs, that meet’s top 2-year-old turf stakes. The Sunny’s Halo will be on the Super Derby undercard Sept. 10.

Amoss looking for his own double

Tom Amoss, who like Stall is a native of New Orleans, will be shooting for a Louisiana double of his own this summer – two of them, as a matter of fact.

Amoss bagged a pair of winners on Showcase Night, sending out Populist Politics to victory in the $100,000 Showcase Mile for 3-year-olds and Little Polka Dot in the Ladies Sprint. Both are being pointed to races on Louisiana Cup Day at Louisiana Downs on Aug. 20. Populist Politics will go in the Louisiana Breeders’ Derby while Little Polka Dot is a likely starter in the Louisiana Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.

“The Breeders’ Derby is perfect for the 3-year-old,” Amoss said from Churchill Downs during its closing day program last Monday. “He is a much better colt around two turns.”

Populist Politics captured the Crescent City Derby at Fair Grounds at 1 1/16 miles in late March and narrowly missed in the Gentilly at the same distance over the Fair Grounds turf a month before.

Little Polka Dot’s win last Saturday extended her winning streak to four dating back to an allowance win at Fair Grounds March 20. The string also includes victories at Churchill and Mountaineer.