Tuesday, 11 June 2013 07:19

Weekend Wrap-up from RMTC (June 7-9)

Written by Garry Allison - Rocky Mountain Turf Club
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Sunday's $8,700 Spring Overnite Sprint was a good display by a good horse beating a good field. Norm Cuthbertson's pride, Beau Gris, who ran fourth last time out, took charge going into the first turn and won with seeming ease, ahead of Lyon's Growl, Scott Sterr up, and Ramiro Sanchez Castillo aboard Rocky Ice.

"He finally had his game face on," a smiling Cuthbertson stated as he invited friends into the winner's circle photo. "I told Blandford (Stewart) to go to the front. It was if you can catch me go ahead and do it. That's Beau Gris' kind of race.

"Blandford was a little mad after our fourth in the last race . . . but if you think you'll win every race then you're in the wrong game." Stewart, pressing to be the leading rider with 14 wins (Larris Allen leads the meet with 16) knew he had the right horse under him Sunday.

"On the back we were moving well ahead and by the quarter pole I though, 'just try and catch me,'" Stewart said, his gold tooth flashing with his wide smile.

"His last race (six furlongs) was too long for him and this five and a half furlong race was a bit long. He's at his best at five furlongs, but he sure ran well today."  Laurie Ferguson is always running - at least on horseback - and it is usually to the test barn at the Rocky Mountain Turf Club after winning a race with one of her top-calibre horses in tow.

The Ferguson-trained, Ed-Borgstrom-owned Legacy's A Streakin, with jockey Tyler Walker aboard, has literally owned the Quarter horse program this Spring.

Saturday Legacy's A Streakin, running out of Ferguson's favoured sixth gate, came home first by a comfortable margin - for a Quarter horse race - ahead of SR Rode Tah Glory with Teagan Oulton aboard, in the Quarter Horse Oldtimers Classic, Legacy's A Streakin, by Streakin La Jolla out of Legacy Tells all by Carona Cartel, covered the 350 yards in 17:740 seconds to earn the lion's share of the $9,250 purse.

"Like I've said in the past, with Garcia gone I'm lucky to have the pick of Laurie's barn," said winning rider Tyler Walker, who rode the dapple grey Legacy to her eighth win in her last nine starts.

"Laurie is a good horseman and that horse just loves to run on the outside of the track." The winner, who went off as favourite, paid 4.80, 2.90 and 2.10 - a low price, but that's what you get with a horse that just doesn't seem to loose. Combined with SR Rode Tah Glory, an Allen Goodsell-trained horse, they paid $23.50 for a $2 Exactor.

As things can happen in horse racing, Tyler Walker, who finished second the next race on Les Allen's Jimbobb, went from a racing high to a racing low.

In the sixth race, according to some other rider's, Walker's saddle rolled and as he jumped free he collided with another horse. Walker lay motionless on the track for quite a spell as track-side medics worked on him and then moved him off the racing surface, to transfer Walker to a City of Lethbridge ambulance.

"I was out there and I don't believe it was too critical. I think he hurt all over. You couldn't tell of course, but I don't believe anything was broken," said RMTC CEO Max Gibb.  However, once in hospital it was reported doctor's found some broken ribs and a collapsed lung.

"Its like I've always said, there's no question these jockeys are among the bravest athletes in the world, no matter what track they are riding on. I have nothing but the greatest respect for them." In the 350-yard fifth race Sunday it looked like at least two horses were going down after stumbling at the gate. In the end one of the stumbling horses, William Leech's Glittering Blue, won it all.

"I just about flew off over his head at the gate," winning jockey Scott Sterr said with a big smile.

"Usually you don't recover in a short race like this one, but we did. This is a kind of nice colt." Glittering Blue is by Jess Louisiana Blue out of Glitter Galore by On A high and was bred in Alberta by Rigetti Farms.

BEHIND THE STARTING GATE . . . In the feature Sakes race, the Spring Overnite, a pair of 80-year-old trainers, Stan Marks with Lyon's Growl and Phil Wiest with Rocky Ice, finished second and third respectively . . . Blandford Stewart won four of the last five races Sunday after being shut out Friday and Saturday . . . One of his win's Sunday was aboard Nolan Little Bear's Little Sissy Foo Foo . . . Jockey Jackie Smith, who only rides one or two a weekend, won her first Sunday aboard Robert Gwilliam's Skimming Song for a payout of 24.50, 7.00 and 3.00 . . .

Saturday's was the largest crowd of the season with the possible exception of the opening day combined with the Kentucky Derby . . . With nice weather conditions Saturday, Sunday was overcast and cool, with the sun finally breaking out for the featured seventh race  . . . An oldtime rodeo cowboy, Jack Hicken of Stirling, was on hand taking in the horse racing . . . Ageless Stan Marks won his seventh race Friday and fellow trainer Pete Dubois recorded two more wins during the weekend . . . next live racing action at the RMTC is this Friday at 6 p.m. and then Saturday and Sunday at 1:05 p.m.

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