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– 1st Star: Laurie’s Rocket (KY) – You would be hard pressed to find a horse that has had a better meet than Laurie’s Rocket. After already winning two of three races this year, he scored his biggest win yet when winning the Hot Springs Stakes by over a length over a sloppy track. The win also gave him a win over Apprehender, who was thought to be the best sprinter on the grounds coming into the race. Laurie’s Rocket also owns a victory over Alsvid, who is another highly though of sprinter. With the victory he’ll now be pointed towards the Grade 3 Count Fleet Stakes, which will be ran on closing day as part of the Racing Festival of the South.
– 2nd Star: Jan’s Perfect Star (AR) – The flashy Arkansas Bred filly made it a perfect two for two on her young career Saturday, as she won the Arkansas Breeders Stakes with ease. She took right to the lead early on, and never looked back as she was up by almost fifteen lengths at one point down the back stretch. The final winning margin was about four lengths, and one has to wonder what the next step will be. Will she go back to sprinting? Will she face open company? It will be exciting to follow her career from here on out, as her breeding and Arkansas connections make her intriguing.
– 3rd Star: Justin Phillip (KY) – He was sent to Oaklawn with the Count Fleet Stakes in mind, and on Thursday he took the first step towards winning that race by winning an Allowance race as a prep. Justin Phillip had been banging heads with some of the best in the division on both coasts, and it looked like the class relief was something he really appreciated. The waters will get a little deeper in the Count Fleet, but you’d have to think he’ll be one of the favorites heading into that race. No matter what the future holds, it was just nice to see Justin Phillip back in the winners circle.
– Apprehender (KY) – After running his best race yet last time out, Apprehender regressed big time in the Hot Springs Stakes, finishing dead last. Perhaps the sloppy track was not to his liking, or maybe he just bounced off that big performance last time out. The word is he is still being pointed to the Count Fleet Stakes which is a good sign that he is physically ok. I expect much better from him next time out.
– Friday: The Rainbow Miss Stakes – 3-year old Fillies (Ark. Breds), 6 Furlongs, Purse: $50,000
– Saturday: The Rainbow Stakes – 3-year old males (Ark. Breds), 6 Furlongs, Purse: $50,000
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