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Jebrica prevails in feature race, is claimed for track record $50,000 | Emerald Downs
For the Reporter
Jebrica exerted his class with a powerful 2¾-length victory Saturday in the $20,475 feature race for 3-year-olds and up at Emerald Downs.
Ridden by Juan Gutierrez at 120 pounds, the multiple-stakes winning gelding ran one mile in 1:35.25 and paid $3.40, $2.40 and $2.20. Jim Penney is the trainer for owners Where We At (Paul Heist and Jack Fabulich).
Upon returning to the winner's circle, however, a red tag was claimed on Jebrica to signify the 6-year-old was claimed for a track-record $50,000 by trainer Mike Puhich and owners Dr. Mark Dedomenico and North American Thoroughbred Racing Co.
Voted Emerald Downs' Top 3-Year-Old of 2011, Jebrica is 8-4-6 in 31 starts lifetime with earnings of $327,567. He's a double stakes winner at Emerald Downs and also won the B.C. Premiers at Hastings Racecourse.
"He's just a great horse," Puhich said. "If anybody ever stubs their toe, he's always going to be there. We'll check him out but the plan is to run him back in the Mile. This race sets him up perfectly for three weeks."
The $200,000 Longacres Mile (Grade 3) is Sunday, Aug. 24. Jebrica has run the Mile twice, finishing eighth to Taylor Said in 2012 and fourth to Herbie D last year.
"With a horse like him, there are plenty of options," Puhich added. "He's done pretty much everything. Glen Todd (North American Thoroughbred Racing Co.) pointed him out when he saw him in for a price in California a couple years ago."
Assessment, ridden by Gallyn Mitchell at 117 pounds, closed from last to finish second and paid $6.20 and $2.60. The 10-year-old gelding earned $4,095 to push his Emerald Downs' earnings to $469,525, second highest on the track's all-time list.
Rocky's Quest, ridden by Rocco Bowen at 117 pounds, finished third and paid $2.40 to show. Calculated Chaos, the early leader, finished fourth and Carving was last.
The former track record claim is $40,000 on multiple occasions. The state record is $60,000, set in 1990 when Snipledo was claimed by owner Robert Resoff and went on to win that year's Longacres Mile and honors as Washington Horse of the Year. ... A carryover of $3,984 is up for grabs in Sunday's $0.50 Pick 5 at Emerald Downs. It will begin on Race 6 of the 10-race card at 4:49 pm. ... Gutierrez and Jose Zunino rode two winners each on Saturday's nine-race card. ... Trainer Joe Toye finished first and second in race five – Stolen Forum ($11.80) led gate-to-wire for the win, venerable Sun City rallied late to finish second. A 6-year-old Stolen Gold mare, Stolen Forum is two-for-two at the met and has three straight wins overall. A 10-year-old Snowbound mare, Sun City is 22-29-17 in a 116-race career, earning $187,668. Stolen Gold and Sun City are both owned by Terra Firma Farm, and both went off at odds of 4.90-to-1. ... In the $17,850 maiden special weight for 2-year-olds, O B Harbor ($5.60) ran five furlongs in :56.63 and scored a 3¼-length victory over Legion of Boom, a first-time starter named after the Seahawks' hard-hitting secondary. ... Ankeny Hill, a 4-year-old colt owned by Dr. Rodney Orr of Silverton, Ore., set a Del Mar main track record of :56.07 for five furlongs in Saturday's first race at the Seaside oval. A 4-year-old Kentucky-bred trained by Mark Glatt, Ankeny Hill earned $48,000 for the victory and is 4-for-12 lifetime, including a maiden score last year that gave Gutierrez his 1000th win at Emerald Downs. ... Live racing continues Sunday at 2:15 p.m. Scat Daddybaby is the 2-to-1 morning line favorite in the $22,575 allowance feature for 3-year-olds and up at 6½ furlongs.