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Nominations Announced For Next Weekend's Winter Sprintfest
LAUREL, MD. 02-10-12---Nominations for the three races which highlight the President’s day holiday weekend at Laurel Park were released by the Maryland Jockey Club’s racing office this morning.
Winter SprintFest features two graded, seven furlong contests - the $200,000 Barbara Fritchie Handicap (G2) for fillies and mares on Saturday, February 18 and the $200,000 General George Handicap (G2) for 3-year-olds and up on Monday, February 20.
The Saturday card also includes the $100,000 John B. Campbell Handicap at nine furlongs.
Thirty-two runners are named to the General George, including 2011Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Animal Kingdom 2011 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) winner Caleb’s Posse. Maryland Jockey Club stakes coordinator Coley Blind expects Wood Memorial (G1) winner Toby’s Corner, graded stakes winners Ravalo and Caixa Electronica and Laurel loving Eighttofasttocatch to enter. Others under consideration are This Ones for Phil, Temecula Creek and Fourdangshore.
The Barbara Fritchie attracted twenty-four nominees headlined by recent stakes winners C C’s Pal and Nicole H. Blind also expects Red’s Round Table, who won a pair of stakes races at Laurel last year, to be part of the field.
The Campbell drew nineteen nominees, including Concealed identity and Norman Asbjornson, who competed in the Preakness Stakes (G1) a year ago.
The Maryland Jockey Club will honor the connections of Rapid Redux on Saturday. Rapid Redux has won 22 consecutive races, including six at Laurel Park. The son of Pleasantly Perfect had a perfect 19-for-19 season in 2011 and took home a pair of national awards. The celebration will include a poster giveaway, a winners’ circle presentation with the 6-year-old gelding in attendance and an autograph session with owner Robert Cole and trainer David Wells.
Saturday will feature over $2,500 in prize giveaways and a complimentary knit beanie cap to the first 3,000 paid fans. Those who wear the cap to Laurel on Monday afternoon will receive free admission and will be entered into a drawing to win Preakness tickets.