Northwest newcomer Mucho Amor delivered a sensational Emerald Downs’ debut Sunday, romping to a six-length victory over Alittlelesstalk in the $50,000 Seattle Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.
Ridden by Juan Hernandez at 120 pounds, Mucho Amor covered six furlongs in 1:09.76 and paid $3.80, $2.80 and $2.20. Blaine Wright is the winning trainer for Dave Mowat’s Ten Broeck Farm.
A Kentucky-bred by 2013 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Mucho Macho Man, Mucho Amor earned $25,300 to increase her earnings to $92,590. Her overall record is 3-0-0 in five starts, including a maiden special weight win at Keeneland and a recent allowance victory at Golden Gate.
“Someone asked me this morning why I brought (Mucho Amor) up here,” Mowat said in the winner’s circle. “Number one, I live here, and number two, I have great respect for the industry up here and want to do anything I can to help it.”
The only anxious moments were prior to the race, when Mucho Amor was a bit reluctant to load.
“She was a little nervous before the race, but once the gate open she ran great,” said the Golden Gate-Fields-based Hernandez, now 4-2-0 in seven stakes engagements at Emerald Downs. “This is like my second home here. Winning stakes, how can you not like it?”
Mucho Amor pressed the pace while four-wide into the turn, gained command nearing the five-sixteenths marker and drew off steadily to the wire.
Wright now has 21 stakes wins since the start of the 2017 season, and is No. 7 all-time with 32 stakes wins at Emerald Downs. He’s booked on a Monday flight to Baltimore where he saddles Peter Redekop’s Anothertwistafate in Saturday’s $1.5 million Preakness Stakes at Pimlico.
Alittlelesstalk, longest price on the board at 51 to 1, finished a clear second and paid $29 and $9. Ridden by Lorenzo Lopez at 120 lbs, Alittlelesstalk earned $9,200 for Warlock Stables, Kelly Dougan and Ya Killing Me LLC.
Killarney Lass, second choice at 3 to 1, faded to third after setting fractions of :21.95 and :45.16 for the quarter and half-mile. Ridden by Kevin Orozco, Killarney Lass paid $2.80.
Northwest Factor, last year’s Gottstein Futurity champion rallied late for fourth and Lulu’s Lightening, Forty Six Carats, Something About Me, Slingshot Mistress and Timberlake Gage completed the order of finish.
The $50,000 Kent Stakes at 6½ furlongs is next for 3-year-old fillies on Sunday, June 9.
Barkley victorious in season debut
Barkley came through with a sensational 2019 debut, surging late for a 2¼-length victory over Sippin Fire in Sunday’s $21,500 allowance for 3-year-olds and up.
Last seen capturing the 2018 Longacres Mile, Barkley zipped 5½ furlongs in 1:02.98 and paid $5, $3 and $2.60. Regular rider Javier Matias was aboard for trainer Howard Belvoir and owner Rising Star Stable III.
Barkley earned $11,825 and moved into fifth place on the track’s all-time earnings list with $363,625. A 6-year-old full horse by Munnings, Barkley is 10-4-1 in 18 lifetime starts – all at Emerald Downs – including six stakes wins.
As usual, Barkley accomplished his victory in dramatic style. He broke slow and lagged in fifth as Cody’s Choice set fractions of :22.07 and :44.88, remained inside the entire journey and collared the leaders with a powerful late surge.
Sippin Fire, 2018 Emerald Downs’ Horse of the Meeting, rallied strongly into the lane but was unable to hold off Barkley in deep stretch. Ridden by Gary Wales, Sippin Fire paid $3.80 and $3.
Oh Marvelous Me, third to Barkley in last year’s Longacres Mile, finished third and paid $3.60, while Cody’s Choice, Elliott Bay and Hit the Beach rounded out the six-horse field.
The race was a prep for the $50,000 Governor’s Stakes at six furlongs on Sunday, June 2.
Under allowance/optional claiming conditions, Elliott Bay and Cody’s Choice both raced for a $50,000 tag Sunday. Elliott Bay was claimed for $50,000 by owner Chad Christensen and trainer Frank Lucarelli, tying the largest claim in track history.
Seattle Times Executive Editor Don Shelton served as Honorary Steward for the Seattle Stakes. … Belvoir and Sharon Ross each had back to back winners Sunday – Belvoir with Don’tbeshywillie ($4.20) and Barkley, and Ross with Zanab ($6.80) and Bob’s All In ($10.40). … Matias and Kevin Orozco led the jockeys with two winners apiece, and Matias is five wins away from 500 career wins at Emerald Downs. … Through eight days of racing, Gary Wales leads Orozco 9-8 atop the jockeys’ standings. … Frank Lucarelli tops the trainers’ standings with eight wins. … Jennifer Whitaker made it 19 straight seasons with a victory at Emerald Downs, guiding Don’tbeshyillie to a gate to wire triumph in Sunday’s fourth race. Whitaker is No. 10 all-time with 481 wins at Emerald Downs. … Roamin Effort ($5.60) became the fourth double winner of the meet with a come form behind victory under Jorge Carreno in race three. Co-owned by trainer Robbie Baze and Bill Nooney, Roamin Effort is a 4-year-old Roman Dancer gelding. … In honor of Mother’s Day, Blue Ribbon Farm had its traditional broodmare and foal on the track between races two and three. Washington-bred champion Finding More was this year’s mare along with a foal by $3.8 million earner Shaman Ghost. … Live racing resumes Friday with first post 6:30 p.m.