Two Stakes Highlight Saturday's Program At Laurel Park

Two Stakes Highlight Saturday's Program At Laurel Park

LAUREL, MD. 12-27-12---Laurel Park’s Saturday program includes both the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Championship and the $125,000 Dave’s Friend Stakes.

The Dave’s Friend Stakes has seven runners named to start including the 8-5 program favorite, This Ones for Phil. Rick Dutrow sent the 6-year-old to Laurel in February for the General George Stakes (G2) and they picked up a check for finishing second. The Untuttable gelding has earned better than $750,000 with nine wins in twenty-six starts. He comes into Saturday’s six-furlong event off a second place finish in Aqueduct’s Fall Highweight Handicap (G3). Erick Rodriguez has the mount.

Il Villano (7-2) and Immortal Eyes (4-1) finished second and third in October’s Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash, then switched positions in the Fabulous Strike Handicap at Penn National, finishing second and fourth, respectively.

Il Villano won the Chick Lang Stakes on the Preakness undercard and has finished off the board just twice this year. Kendrick Carmouche will ride the Susan Crowell trainee.

Immortal Eyes has three stakes victories at Charles Town this year for trainer Damon Dilodovico. The 7-year-old has been first or second in 22-of-37 lifetime starts. Sheldon Russell will be aboard the son of Greatness.

“He has been really consistent for us but we are concerned about how the race will unfold with an inside post (Immortal Eyes will break from post 2),” Dilodovico said. “He has not won at Laurel (0-for-3) but I think he has run some of his best races here.”

Fiddlers Afleet (4-1) ran a 99 Beyer Speed figure during a second place finish at Aqueduct earlier this month and was claimed for $75,000 by trainer Rudy Rodriquez. The New York bred has won two restricted stakes this year, one at Belmont Park and one at Saratoga. Angel Arroyo has the riding assignment.

“This race came up really strong,” added Dilodovico. “Ricky Dutrow’s runner is strong, Rudy will be tough with his claim and Il Villano has run well all year. My guy is really good at 4-1/2 with a heart of a lion to get him that extra furlong and a half. He is nasty as a snake and when he is put to task he comes up for us.”

Rounding out the field are Wolfcamp (8-1), Broad Rule (12-1) and My Charming Clyde (20-1).

Ten colts and geldings are entered in the 7-1/2 furlong Juvenile Championship. Dale Capuano trains morning line favorite Lunar Rock (3-1), who comes into the race off back-to-back allowance scores. The son of Cherokee’s Boy, who has never finished out of the money in eight starts, was third in both the Maryland Million Nursery and the Laurel Futurity.

“He always runs his race and is there every time,” Capuano said. “He’ll do anything: turf, dirt, long, short and whatever you need him to do from a pace standpoint though he is a little better coming off the pace. The race seems to be evenly matched but I think he is going to run well.”

The first four finishers from the Maryland Million Nursery are entered, including winner Keep Momma Happy (15-1), runner-up Alpha Mike Foxtrot (5-1) and D C Dancer (5-1), who was fourth.

Peeds in a Pod (4-1) sped away in MSW sprint here on Dec. 12 that timed 2/5 second faster than an allowance race on the same card.

Awesome Devine (9-2) is two-for-two, including an allowance score over Alpha Mike Foxtrot and D C Dancer at Laurel in late November. 

Also expected to face the starter are Hamp (8-1), Hanky Doodle (12-1), Indian Bucks (20-1) and Saints Preserve Us (30-1).



Christmas came two days late for one lucky winner, who took down the top prize of $106,864.60 when Elpidiowon the final leg of Laurel Park’s Players’ Jackpot Pick 5.

Sixty percent of the Pick 5 pool is paid out daily if there are multiple or best of five winners, with the remaining forty percent of the pool carried over to build toward a “jackpot” payout to a single, unique, winning ticket. 

The single winning ticket contained the numbers 4-3-10-1-8 with race winners paying, in order: Mo’s Bro ($31.60-race 5), Shordawatyadrink ($37.40-race 6), Twelve Stone ($8-race 7), Big Kick ($6.20-race 8) and Elpidio ($4.20-race 9).

The Players’ Jackpot Pick 5 is a $.50 minimum wager with an 18% takeout.


About Laurel Park

Laurel Park is a Stronach Group company, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack owner/operator. The Stronach Group racetracks include Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park & Casino, Golden Gate Fields, Portland Meadows, Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, home of the world-famous Preakness. The company owns and operates the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida and is one of North America's top race horse breeders through its award-winning Adena Springs operation. The Stronach Group is one of the world's largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services. Its companies include AmTote, a global leader in wagering technology; Xpressbet, an Internet and telephone account wagering service; and Monarch Content Management, which acts as a simulcast purchase and sales agent of horseracing content for numerous North American racetracks and wagering outlets. The Stronach Group is also a major producer of televised horse racing programming through its HRTV cable and satellite network and is North America's premier supplier of virtual online horse racing games, as well as a leading producer of social media content for the horseracing industry.