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Friday, February 01, 2013


WIDE-OPEN FIELD FOR SATURDAY’S WIDE COUNTRY STAKES


LAUREL, MD. 02-01-13---A wide-open field of seven 3-year old fillies is expected to face starter Bruce Wagner in Saturday’s $125,000 Wide Country Stakes at Laurel Park.

Dear to All (2-1) posted the highest speed rating among the seven runners while breaking her maiden at Aqueduct on December 30. The Tale of the Cat filly, who will break from the rail in the seven furlong test on the main track, has been on the board in all three starts during her freshman campaign. Sheldon Russell will ride for Tony Dutrow.


Walkwithapurpose (5-2) won three straight races at Laurel during the 2012 fall meeting, capped off with an easy victory in the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship on New Year’s Eve. The Sagamore Farm runner is trained by Ignacio Correas, who said after the stakes win that the daughter of Candy Ride (ARG) had a chance to run in the Black-Eyed Susan (G2) at Pimlico on May 17.

Jeremy Rose has been aboard all three victories and likes how Walkwithapurpose improved with each start.

“She keeps getting better and better and better,” Rose said. “The first time I rode her (October 3) I didn’t know if she was going to leave the course or not. The second time (November 16) she went straight but lost her way and I had to go wide to get the win. Last time out, the light bulb went on. Since that start she has continued to impress in three works. I really don’t think distance is going to be an issue and I believe she has potential to be a Black-Eyed Susan type of horse. Her numbers have improved with each start but to be able to get there, we have to beat runners like these.”

Power Lady (7-2) has two wins and two thirds on her resume. The third place finishes came in the Smart Halo Stakes at Laurel and the Old Hat Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park. John Servis has shipped her back from Florida and has named John Bisono to ride.

Sense of Reality (6-1) is riding a two win streak into the Wide Country. The Street Sense filly beat maiden $25,000 company in November at Parx Racing, then returned on New Year’s Day to trounce non-winners of one allowance company. Carlos Marquez has the call on the Patricia Farro trainee.

Hot Fun (8-1) has finished first or second in four consecutive races, including an allowance victory here on January 21. The Latent Heat filly finished second, eight lengths back of Walkwithapurpose in the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship. Forrest Boyce rides for trainer Donald Barr.

Ek Haseena (10-1) has runner-up finishes in her two previous stakes tries: the Smart Halo and the Gin Talking. Kevin Navarro will ride the Songandaprayer filly for the fourth consecutive race. Frannie Campitelli is her trainer.

She’s All Scat (12-1) won the Gin Talking Stakes at odds of 13-1 in November. Mike Pino shipped her to Gulfstream, where she finished fifth in the Old Hat, less than three lengths out of the money, and now has her back in Maryland. Jose Caraballo regains the mount.

RAVENS FEVER HITS LAUREL PARK

On the eve of Super Bowl XLVII, the Laurel Park racing office showed its support for the Baltimore Ravens by naming the first six races on Saturday’s card with a Ravens-related theme.

• The T Sizzle (race 1)
• Heydiddlediddle, Rice up the Middle (race 2)
• Wacco for Flacco (race 3)
• Ray’s Last Ride (race 4)
• Ed Reed’s Two Tickets to Paradise (race 5)
• Go Ravens Purple Pride (race 6)

For the last three weeks, the virtual finish line on Laurel Park’s simulcast signal has featured a “Go Ravens” logo.



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