Friday, December 12 2008

December 12 Cancellation after Race 3

Stickney, IL—Hawthorne Race Course cancelled the last six races of its nine-race card due to inclement weather.

Those who played the early Pick Four will be paid if you had the winners of the second and third races. Pick Threes starting with the second race will also pay if you had the first two winners. All other wagers including the Place Pick Nine will be refunded.

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The Jim Edgar Illinois Futurity

A Summer Feeling as Winter Nears

Trainer Anthony Mitchell has trained a couple of precocious two-year-olds, but the ones that come to mind are fillies: Original Spin and Summer Mis. The latter just happens to be the dam of Summer’s Empire, the probable favorite in the $100,000 Jim Edgar Illinois Futurity for two-year-old colts and geldings.

“His (Summer’s Empire) mother figured it out real easy,” said Mitchell. “Some of them get it straight away and others take a little more time. This colt is only now beginning to learn the game and it’s pretty exciting when they do.”

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Wednesday, December 10 2008

2009 Hawthorne Stakes Schedule

Stickney, IL--The Illinois Racing Board has released the 2009 stakes schedule. The staple of the spring meet, the Grade 2, $500,000 Illinois Derby will run on April 4. The last seven winners of the Illinois Derby have run in the Kentucky Derby, starting with War Emblem, who won both events in 2002.

The Sixty Sails Handicap, a Grade 3 stake for fillies and mares will be contested on April 18, and Illinois Champions Day, complete with six $100,000 stakes races, will be held on April 25.

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Stickney, Ill.—This weekend Hawthorne Race Course, 3501 S. Laramie, will host a $50,000 Handicapping Challenge, an unprecedented opportunity for players to win a $25,000 grand prize without paying an entry fee. The free contest, which has never been offered at the race course before, will take place on December 13 and 14 during live racing which begins at 1:35PM each day.

The $50,000 Handicapping Challenge is a “real money” event wherein players wager their own dollars, keep their own earnings, and win bonus cash and prizes simply for playing the ponies. The contest simply rewards the players who earn the most money with their starting bankroll—$250 on Saturday and $250 on Sunday.

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Sunday, December 07 2008

Deep Closing Maiden wins Whitworth Illinois Debutante

Stickney, IL—Sometimes a good pedigree can overcome experience and a tough post position. Such was the case in the 26th running of the $107,650 Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante, when Ava Mae, a full sister to 2006 Hawthorne Derby winner Best of Buddies, rallied powerfully through the stretch to win the Illinois-bred race for two-year-old fillies.

Ridden by Jose Ferrer and trained by Michelle Boyce, Ava Mae entered the ‘Debutante’ a maiden, having finished 2nd and 4th in her only two lifetime starts, but the connections were confident they had a talented filly and thought this could be a spot to take a chance.

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Saturday, November 01 2008

Illinois Festival of Racing Wrap-Up

High Expectations and Stop a Train highlight Big Illinois Stakes Day for Janks

Stickney, IL---Longtime Chicagoland-trainer Christine Janks has made a nice living off many of these Illinois-bred stakes days, but today she might have gone beyond even her lofty ambitions.

Janks conditioned three winners and two runners-up on Saturday, as Hawthorne hosted the Illinois Festival of Racing. Veteran local champions High Expectations and Stop a Train turned back the clock a little as they registered popular scores in the Lightening Jet and Illini Princess Handicaps, respectively, and Nicks won her first stakes race in the Powerless Handicap.

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Thursday, October 30 2008

The Illinois Festival of Racing: State-breds Front and Center

Stickney, IL---The Illinois Festival of Racing on Saturday, November 1 marks the time on the calendar to celebrate the local state-bred equines that populate the majority of Hawthorne’s backstretch. And while the progeny of our state’s thoroughbreds won’t be confused with those from Kentucky, many have proven successful when raced on the national stage.

Copper State and Rolling Seas (both nominated, but not entered in the Illini Princess) are two such mares who have demonstrated the ability to compete outside of their friendly confines, by either winning or placing in multiple graded stakes.

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