Race decided by a nose, nose, nose 'Jackie' smells stakes win, barely fends off 5 others

Laurel notebook

July 06, 1998|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

Racing doesn't get any better than the $75,000 Lady Baltimore Stakes yesterday at Laurel Park.

Six horses charged to the finish line a neck apart and the placing judges needed almost 10 minutes to determine the final order of the 1 1/8 -mile test on the turf.

Three noses, a head and a dead heat (for fourth place) later, Earth to Jackie was declared the winner of the $45,000 top prize.

The Polish Numbers filly nipped long shot Shuttered, who earned the place by a nose over another long shot, My Papoose. Two others, Privateers Bay and Short Time, were another nose back in a tie for fourth.

The outcome was poetic justice after Edgar Prado skillfully judged the pace and guided Earth to Jackie up the rail just in time.

The victory was dedicated to Jacquelyn Schipke, co-owner of Earth to Jackie, who died Friday of cancer. The horse was named after her.

"I heard the announcer [Dave Rodman] say her name [Earth to Jackie] in that special way just before the start," said assistant trainer Kevin Boniface. "I think that helped us coming to the wire."

"We wanted to dedicate this race to her," said Prado, who rode the filly to her sixth win in 14 career starts. "It was an incredible finish."

Earth to Jackie laid just off a leisurely pace set by Privateers Bay and was still third as they entered the stretch. But Prado found a narrow opening inside to reach contention.

"I saw the three horse's head come up just as ours was starting to come down," said Boniface, referring to Shuttered. "Edgar rode a great race. I think that's what won it for us."

The winning time was 1: 49 1/5.

Dash nominees number 18

Eighteen top sprinters have been nominated for the $300,000 Frank J. De Francis Dash on July 18.

Only the $1 million Breeders' Cup Sprint has a larger purse among six-furlong races.

Among the nominees are locally based Wise Dusty, who finished a gritty second to Eclipse Award winner Smoke Glacken in last year's Dash, and Metropolitan Handicap winner Wild Rush, a winner of more than $1 million.

Another prominent entrant is Richter Scale, who had won five stakes in eight starts before finishing off the board in the Tom Fool Stakes at Belmont yesterday.

Miscellaneous

Hollywood Park has announced a guaranteed amount of $1.5 million and a mandatory payoff for the pick 6 pool it is holding July 18. In addition, if there is only one winner in the pool, that fan will receive a $500,000 bonus. The promotion is being offered for the second time and this time should include the rich New York network, which did not participate in the June 14 pool because of the possibility of a carry-over. Two notables on the national scene are returning to the track. Cavonnier, hard-luck loser of the 1996 Kentucky Derby, is going into training in California for his first start since the 1996 Belmont Stakes. Free House, who joined Silver Charm and Captain Bodgit for those stirring Triple Crown duels in 1997, will race Saturday in the $100,000 Bel Air Handicap at Hollywood Park following a nine-month layoff. Trainer Paco Gonzalez is hoping to point him to the Pacific Classic. An assortment of fund-raising activities produced $2,161 for the Don MacBeth Memorial Jockey Fund at Laurel Park. The fund helps to support disabled riders. Laurel Park has opened on Sunday nights for simulcasting and will continue to be open through mid-August.

Pub Date: 7/06/98

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