Citi Party Stays Perfect with Feature Victory Thursday

Citi Party Stays Perfect with Feature Victory Thursday

Maryland-Bred Likely Stakes-Bound Improving to 3-0
Trainer Mike Trombetta Registers Three-Win Day
Rainbow 6 Carryover $10,988 for Friday Program

LAUREL, MD – Gary Barber and Team Valor International’s undefeated filly Citi Party likely earned herself a date with stakes company following her popular 7 ½-length romp in Thursday’s featured sixth race at Laurel Park.

Ridden by Jorge Ruiz for trainer Mary Eppler, and favored at 1-5 in the field of seven, Citi Party ($2.40) ran 5 ½ furlongs in 1:03.75 over a fast main track to capture the entry-level allowance for Maryland-bred/sired fillies and mares 3 and up.

Citi Party led all the way for her third consecutive victory, setting fractions of 22.37, 45.63 and 57.59 seconds. Initially pressed by Cowboy’s Plan and then eventual runner-up Questionoftheday, Citi Party took a four-length lead into the stretch and pulled clear through the lane.

“We are so excited to have this type of horse,” Eppler’s assistant, Saul Ramirez, said. “We are just a team. We are trying to do the best we can. Everybody knows what to do, and that’s the result right there.”

Citi Party made her career debut against older horses Nov. 18 at Laurel, breaking slowly before unleashing a rally and drawing away to a four-length win. The 4-year-old daughter of Desert Party out of the Citidancer mare Citi Sounds, co-bred by Eppler and John Harro, was a 6 ½-length winner of an optional claimer Feb. 18 in her seasonal debut; both races came at six furlongs.

“I’m not really sure what’s next,” Ramirez said. “We’re going to try to get a little more for her. She’s doing really good right now, so probably she can go to a stakes to see how good she is. She may be small in body, but she’s big on heart.”

Ramirez saddled his first winner as a trainer April 7 with El Durango Racing Stable’s Prevailing Party at Laurel. His other horse, America’s Prince, finished fifth in Thursday’s seventh race.

“I almost had a heart attack, I was so excited,” Ramirez said. “Mary was the first one to call me after I won and she thinks I’m going to do really good. I keep learning from everyone around me, and I’m very thankful.

“I was working for [trainer] Kieron [Magee] for almost seven years and the last couple months for Mary. She was the first one to give me the opportunity to become an assistant trainer. She was the one that was pushing me to get my license and move forward.”

Notes: Mike Trombetta registered a training triple Thursday, sending out Road to Oz ($15.40) in Race 1, Tracy With a Y ($4) in Race 3 and Star Hawk ($9.20) in the Race 8 finale to victories … The 20-cent Rainbow 6 will have a jackpot carryover of $10,988.14 for Friday’s nine-race card (1:10 p.m. post time) after going unsolved Thursday. Multiple tickets with all six winners each returned $127.87.