Poor But Honest claims Polynesian

September 10, 1995|By Pete Bielski | Pete Bielski,Special to The Sun

The claimers outclassed their stakes foes yesterday at Pimlico Race Course.

Poor But Honest, a former $5,000 claimer, claimed majority share of the $100,000 Polynesian Stakes with a 2 1/4 -length victory in track-record-tying time.

Long shot Texturizer, recently claimed for $11,500, ran second, leaving proven stakes winners Ameri Valay and Richie The Coach as also-rans in the six-horse field.

Also at Pimlico yesterday, 2-5 favorite Count On Numbers won the $50,000 Bernie P. Bond Stakes for 2-year-olds. Named after the late trainer who excelled at training juveniles, Bond would have been proud of Count On Numbers, who won his second straight stakes and third race in five career starts.

For Poor But Honest, stakes race success has become commonplace since joining the barn of New Jersey-based trainer Juan Serey earlier this year after a claim of $8,500. The Polynesian was his fourth stakes victory of the year, but he also has run second behind Horse of the Year candidate Cigar in the Massachusetts (at Suffolk Downs) and Schossberg in the Iselin (at Monmouth Park).

For those reasons, Poor But Honest was the 7-5 favorite yesterday. He certainly delivered, matching the 1 1/16th-mile record of 1 minute, 40 1/5 seconds set by Deputed Testamony on Preakness Day 1984.

The surprise yesterday was Texturizer, a claimer with just $55,350 in career earnings before yesterday. With a $20,000 payday, trainer William "Dave" Sams treated his second-place finish as a victory.

"He was cut out to be a stakes horse, but he's been unlucky," Sams said. "I feel very lucky to have claimed him for what we did."

At the age of 2, Texturizer won the Primer Stakes at Pimlico in August 1993. Knee chips put him on the farm for almost a year, but Sams didn't forget Texturizer. His return was in a claiming race and Sams nabbed him for $11,500.

But don't count on seeing him entered in another claiming race any time soon.

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