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ICF Filly Trot Stake Won't Be Boring (06/23/13)

Posted Sunday June 23, 2013

                                                   By Mike Paradise

  If Balmoral Park’s June 9 Fox Valley Diva stake is any indication tonight’s $12,000 Betzotic for ICF 3-year-old trotting fillies will be anything but dull.

  The second race six-horse field with five betting interests brings out Sara The Spy (programmed 8-5), Divination (8-1), American Empress (8-1), Trot Fudge Sundae (3-1) and the Robert Taylor owned entry of Just For Fun (8-5) and Little Ms Chrissy (8-5).

  All but Divination tangled in the Fox Valley Diva that had a little bit of everything except horses staying on stride.

  To refresh your memory, one of the favorites was Sara The Spy but she broke before the start and never got within 20 lengths of the field.

  Little Ms Chrissy had command through a moderate :58.3 first half and looked like she might go all the way for her initial season win but last year’s Lady Lincoln Land champion made a bad break coming out of the last turn and ended up in the infield.

  Trot Fudge Sundae, who was third at the time, reacted to the breaking filly and went off stride herself. The pocket horse American Empress then assumed the lead but Casey Leonard got Just For Fun in high gear and she powered past and drew off by more than four lengths of runner-up Trot Fudge Sundae, who regained stride and finished well for driver Dave Magee.

  However, the stewards ruled that Just For Fun took advantage of Trot Fudge Sundae’s break and her miscue was caused by her breaking entry-mate Little Ms Chrissy. So after a very lengthy delay, Trot Fudge Sundae was awarded her 13th career win in 18 starts and Just For Fun was put down to third.

  Sunday night Just For Fun is again coupled with Little Ms Chrissy and the May 26 Violet victor has the one-slot for her breeders and co-owners Robert and Taylor Rietveld when she goes for her third win in five season starts.

  The 2012 Illinois 2-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year Trot Fudge Sundae drew the outside six-slot nevertheless, if asked, possesses the gate speed to get to the front or find a hole up-close.

  Trainer Nick Prather turned over the lines on Divination last Sunday to Mike Oosting and the filly responded with an easy 1:57.1 victory on the front-end. One night earlier Sara The Spy beat a field of older trotters in comfortable fashion with a 1:56 mile, scooted home the last panel in :27.1 for driver and owner Todd Warren.

  The Betzotic stake looks like a wide-open event and once again should be anything but lackluster.

  Roberts Gets 1,000th: Needing two victories on last night’s Balmoral card to reach 1,000 for his career John Roberts didn’t waste any time getting them.

  The 32-year-old Roberts won with his first two drives of the night, bringing home the 2-year-old Stan Miller trainee Tough Rose in the opener in her pari-mutuel debut and then driving the 35-1 longshot B Keeper ($72.80) to his first place finish in race three for trainer Bret Shutz.

  In between Roberts two wins Fort Silky motored to his fourth straight triumph and his sixth this season in a Balmoral Invite with a 1:50.2 clocking with regular driver Casey Leonard at his lines.



      John Roberts drove the 35-1 longshot B Keeper for career win No. 1,000.

                                                                                                     R.E.B. Photo


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