Four day race week at Emerald Downs

Donald & Beverly Conway
Donald & Beverly Conway's Devon Dat Cash (red silks, No. 10) and jockey J. Luis Torres prevail in the 2011 Bank of America Emerald Championship Challenge for Quarter Horses 3-year-olds and up. The second running of the race is Sunday, September 2, 2012.
— image credit: Photo courtesy Reed Palmer/Emerald Downs Photo

Only 13 days remain in the 2012 meeting at Emerald Downs, but several important events remain on the docket: Labor Day racing on Monday, September 3, Washington Cup X on Sunday, September 9, and both the Gottstein Futurity and Ashbaugh Beal Claiming Challenge on Closing Day, Sunday, September 23.

And this Sunday is the most important date of the season for Quarter Horses with the second running of the $54,000 Bank of America Emerald Championship Challenge for 3-year-olds and up at 440 yards. The field is composed of 10 qualifiers from two heats on August 18 and goes as the eighth race at 5:39 pm

Quarter Horses have produced boxcar payoffs at Emerald Downs. Fastest qualifier Follys Fast (:22.09) and second fastest qualifier Givemesumcorona (:22.11) won their respective heats while paying $19.40 and $38.60 to win.

In last year’s final, Devon Dat Cash and Vodka With Ice ran first and second at 17.30 and 17.80-to-1, respectively, and the $1 exacta was worth $206.80 while the $1 superfecta paid a whopping $7,073.70.

Devon Dat Cash and Vodka With Ice are back this year as the fifth and seventh fastest qualifiers at :22.34 and :22.44 seconds respectively. A Royal Dervish, third in last year’s final, is another top contender based on his second fastest qualifying time of :22.16. The 7-year-old Washington-bred has been a steady performer with a career mark of 11-5-8 in 33 starts for trainer Kurt Carlton and owners Bob and Scott Gilner.

Devon Dat Cash is winless since his $36.60 surprise last year, but the 7-year-old gelding ran his best race of 2012 in the trial, and obviously enjoys Emerald Downs with a 1-2-0 record in three starts. He finished second when Snip N Dale captured the first Quarter Horse race in track history*the $12,400 Muckleshoot Tribal dash/John Deere Bonus Challenge on Sept. 25, 2010. Trainer John R. Harris, meanwhile, was the leading Quarter Horse conditioner here last year with four wins.

Sunday’s late Daily Double is composed of two Quarter Horse events, the Bank of America Emerald Championship Challenge and the $15,000 Pfizer Emerald Starter Allowance Challenge.

The field for the second annual Bank of America Emerald Championship Challenge, Race 8, 5:39 pm: 1-L Bar D Snow Princess, Tad Skaggs, 124 lbs; 2-Lajolla Famosa A.L. Gutierrez, 124; 3-Givmesumcorona, Leonel Camacho-Flores, 122; 4-Vodka With Ice, Jose Zunino, 124; 5-Just a Rumor, Jorge Rosales, 124; 6-A Royal Dervish, Never T. Marin, 124; 7-Follys Fast, Dennis Reyes-Frisby, 124; 8-Cash Baq, Debbie Hoonan, 122; 9-Devon Dat Cash, J. Luis Torres, 124; 10-Cupids Dash, Troy Stillwell, 124.

The field for the $15,000 Pfizer Emerald Starter Allowance Challenge, Race 9, 6:09 pm: 1-Junosnoking, Hoonan, 124; 2-Hannibal Lector, Tim Neal, 124; 3-Ought to Azoom, Ruben Lozano, 124; 4-Mr Easy Okie, Stillwell, 124; 5-J Mancuso, Torres, 122.



In conjunction with Sunday’s big Quarter Horse race, Jen Perkins is visiting Emerald Downs to share her vast knowledge with racing fans.

Q-Racing Aces, a fan education program initiated by the American Quarter Horse Associations, sends their Quarter Horse expert Jen Perkins to Emerald Downs to educate the local fan base on how to handicap Quarter Horse races including analysis of speed figures and pedigree.

From 1:05 to 1:20 p.m., Perkins joins Jacob Pollowitz for the track’s “Paddock Preview Show.” The 15-minute special, located in the paddock area, features Perkins’ breakdown of the day’s card including an in-depth preview of both the Bank of America Emerald Challenge Championship and it’s sub-feature, the $15,000 Pfizer Emerald Starter Allowance Challenge.

During live racing hours, Perkins, scheduled to appear on Joe Withee’s TV race previews, will be available to answer any questions about American Quarter Horses and has free wagering handouts and tip sheets provided by the AQHA.

NOTES: Week 20 honors: Jockey-Debbie Hoonan (19-5-1-1); Trainer-Bonifacio Rayas (3-2-0-0); Owner-Shady Valley Ranch (2-1-0-1); Groom-Gumaro Martinez (Larry Ross); Washington Bred-Cariboo Road (breeder Ron Crockett Inc. & Mr. & Mrs. William T. Griffin)*Ivor & Jack Jones’ 3-year-old gelding Edge Forward earned an 83 Beyer for his one-length win in 1:14.23 for 6-½ furlongs on Saturday, August 25*Juan Gutierrez begins Week 21 with a 91-79 lead on Leslie Mawing in the jockeys’ standings and is on pace to finish with a career-high 106 wins and his first Emerald Downs’ riding title. In the last 10 years, Gutierrez has finished second twice, third four times, fourth twice and fifth twice*Eliska Kubinova needs six wins in the final 13 days to break the single-season apprentice mark of 70 wins established in 2009 by Cassie Papineau*Sunday’s Thoroughbred feature is an $18,900 allowance/optional claiming event at one mile. The razor-sharp 4-year-old gelding Rocky’s Quest heads a field that features Newfound Gold, Come Away Home and Wasserman, the track’s all-time leading earner with $555,253. Trained by Blaine Wright for John & Janene Maryanski, Rocky’s Quest is 3-2-1 in six starts at the meet with earnings of $35,323*In Sunday’s sixth race for $5,000 claiming fillies and mares, both Up Your Plan and Seattle Game could become the meet’s first five-time winner*Akina also goes for her fifth win of the meeting in Saturday’s sixth race. The 5-year-old Florida-bred mare is 6-2-0 in nine starts this year including two wins at Portland Meadows*Eight horses have won four races: Up Your Plan, Seattle Game, Akina, Class Included, Zippin E, Go With Gusto, Malibu Rum and Grand Baylee. Class Included is the lone stakes winner in the group*Trainer Tim McCanna saddles Tribal Tribute in Sunday’s $300,000 Del Mar Derby (G2) on the turf at Del Mar. Owned by Ken Heidt, the Tribal Rule gelding comes off a victory in the Robert Dupret Derby at Santa Rosa*Saturday at Del Mar, Longacres Mile nominee John Scott is the 2-to-1 morning line in the $85,000 Harold F. Brubaker at one mile on Polytrack*Olympic Lights could become only the fifth horse to win 15 career races at Emerald Downs when the 8-year-old gelding runs in Saturday’s seventh race for open $5,000 claimers. Olympic Lights has won two straight for trainer Blaine Wright and is 14-for-36 at Emerald Downs.

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