Nimble ties Laurel mark at 7 furlongs

`Awesome' 7-year-old romps in Furey Stakes

June 27, 1999|By Tom Keyser | Tom Keyser,SUN STAFF

Nimble is, his trainer says, a little crazy, an awesome animal, a monster. Take your pick.

Yesterday, Nimble displayed his finest qualities and tied the Laurel Park seven-furlong record of 1 minute, 21 2/5 seconds set by Tappiano in 1989. Stabled at Philadelphia Park, Nimble devoured three foes in the $50,000 E. William Furey Memorial Stakes, a race honoring the late chairman of the Maryland Racing Commission.

Nimble won his fifth race in a row for the trainer Scott A. Lake, who tried to talk his clients, the brothers Eric and Gregg Frahl, out of claiming the 7-year-old gelding for $32,000 in February. Lake knew Nimble acted "a little crazy" in the mornings, but he soon found out the horse was "an awesome animal, a monster."

Lake and his staff handle Nimble gingerly. Lakes doesn't even breeze Nimble between races. He said 90 percent of trainers overwork their horses anyway.

"We backed off," Lake said. "We kind of let him do what he wants."

And that, apparently, is win.

In the race after the stakes, George's Star Wars won and paid $85.20. He should have been the hunch play of the day. Yesterday was Star Wars promotion day at Laurel Park.

Belmont Park: Dreams Gallore came from off the pace for a 7 1/2-length victory in the $250,000 Mother Goose Stakes for 3-year-old fillies in Elmont, N.Y.

Before the race, Three Ring, one of the favorites, reared up in the walking ring and fell, striking her head heavily. She was severely injured and was destroyed.

Monmouth Park: Natalie Too won the Grade III $100,000 Vinery Matchmaker Stakes. She ran the 1 1/8 miles on turf in 1 minute, 46 4/5 seconds in Oceanport, N.J.

Delaware Park: Odds-on favorite Comic Strip captured the $75,000 Grey Beret Stakes, defeating Majestic Jove by 1 1/2 lengths in Wilmington.

Comic Strip completed the 1 1/16 miles on turf in 1: 44 1/5 seconds.

Lone Star Park: Hall of Famer Laffit Pincay Jr.'s third-place finish in the last race aboard Brave Pancho was enough to earn him the NTRA All-Star Jockey Championship on Friday night in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Edgar Prado, Maryland's top jockey, finished sixth.

Wire reports contributed to this article.

Pub Date: 6/27/99

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