ANDERSON, Ind.—August 3, 2016— Hoosier Park Racing & Casino highlighted the Wednesday, August 3 card with two $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for the freshman colt and filly trotters and it was Hoosier Park’s leading driver, Trace Tetrick, who made a clean sweep of both divisions. It was one of three wins on the evening’s 14-race card for Tetrick and back to back upset victories in each of the stake races.
In the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old trotting fillies, Tetrick utilized a patient drive to guide Foxy Swan to the winner’s circle in 1:57. It was the second consecutive victory for Foxy Swan after she was victorious in her elimination at Hoosier Park last week and the 1:57 mark was a new lifetime best.
Leaving from the coveted rail position, Tetrick eased Foxy Swan off the gate to find a pocket seat while a host of others battled for early position. Satin Dancer and John DeLong were the first to get a call through the opening panel in :28 but their lead would be short-lived as Doug Rideout would have the even money favorite, Ajessia, pointed to the front. Ajessia dictated middle fractions of :57.4 and 1:28 before Robert Taylor and Donnas Dream were applying pressure first-over on the outside.
Donnas Dream was able to put away Ajessia but Foxy Swan loomed large in the background. Tetrick tipped Foxy Swan to the outside and she utilized a :28 final quarter to trot on to the wire nearly two lengths in front of Satin Dancer. Donnas Dream held on to round out the trifecta. Pulling the slight upset, Foxy Swan returned $7.40 to her backers at the betting windows.
“She’s a nice filly,” Tetrick noted in the winner’s circle. “She seems to be getting better with every start and is getting good at the right time.”
Trained by Erv Miller, Foxy Swan has now won three of five lifetime starts while bankrolling $67,050. The daughter of Swan For All-Fox Valley Click is owned by The Ervin Miller Stable and Anthony Lombardi.
In the very next race on the card, Tetrick used the same patient tactics utilizing the long Hoosier Park stretch to guide Bumblebzbuzz to victory in the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. Scoring in a new lifetime best of 1:58, Bumblebzbuzz staged a big rally late in the lane to pull the 8-1 upset for trainer Tom T. Tetrick.
Tetrick eased Bumblebzbuzz off the gate to settle along the rail in seventh while the battle was on for early position as soon as the wings of the gate folded. Ultimate Encore and Rick Farrington left alertly to get a call through the opening panel in :28 but Jason Dillander and Time To Travel also wanted the front. Jesse V and Ricky Macomber Jr. were the next to take command as they called the shots through middle fractions of :58.3 and 1:29.0.
As the field turned for home, it appeared to be a wide open race. With the horses on the front beginning to fade, Tetrick tipped Bumblebzbuzz around the tiring cover and the three-year-old gelding coasted to the wire with a :27.4 final quarter. My Uncle Cuz and Don Harmon rallied nicely for second place honors while Swan Chase and Rick Plano finished third. Bumblebzbuzz returned $18.60 to his backers at the betting windows.
“I always thought he was a nice colt training down,” trainer Tom T. Tetrick, who also co-owns the gelding with Ervin Wickey, noted in the winner’s circle. “He’s had some issues and we’ve had to work through them but he is a nice colt. I wasn’t sure how tonight would work out but we got lucky that the trip worked out for us and the horse raced really well.”
It was the second consecutive Hoosier Park victory and second career victory from five starts for the son of Pinetucky-Bumblebzannie. Bumblebzbuzz has now earned $52,500 lifetime for his connections.
Live racing will resume at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, August 4 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com.
For the first time this season, a track record was re-established at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino during the evening’s 13-race card on Tuesday, July 19. Fly Jesse Fly kicked the evening’s program off with a bang as he lowered the track record for three-year-old trotting geldings to 1:53.2 in the first race of the program. The 1:53.2 mark was a new lifetime best for Fly Jesse Fly and re-established the track record for three-year-old trotting geldings, a mark that was previously co-held by Rose Run Parker and Homicide Hunter.
Fly Jesse Fly used his customary front-running tactics and left aggressively from post seven to grab command before the opening quarter in :27.1. The Ron Otto trainee dictated fractions of :56.1 and 1:25.2 while the rest of the field struggled to stay within striking distance.
As the field turned for home, Fly Jesse Fly’s lead was ever-increasing. Late Bid Tom and Jason Dillander were next in line second but the quick pace was beginning to take its toll. Dreamstyle Herbie and Ross Leonard were next in line third but Topville Avatar and Dale Hiteman were gaining ground in fourth. Tetrick simply asked his mount for more and Fly Jesse Fly used a :28 final quarter to coast home a winner by three lengths. Topville Avatar rallied for second while Dreamstyle Herbie rounded out the trifecta.
It was the second consecutive Hoosier Park victory for the son of Jailhouse Jesse-Flying Rae and fifth seasonal victory from nine outings. He was also victorious in the last round of $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes finals for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings; handing Bridge To Jesse’s his first loss of the season.
Owned by Robert Sidley and James Ronald Otto, Fly Jesse Fly has bankrolled $92,462 throughout his three-year-old campaign. Fly Jesse Fly will look to make his next start in the third round of Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings slated for July 26 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino.
It was a training double for Ron Otto as he also scored with veteran pacer JJ’s Gazette in “The Old Codger” pace later in the program. The 14-year-old gelding stopped the timer in 1:53.3 to notch his 62nd career victory from 330 lifetime starts.
Live racing returns to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Wednesday, July 20 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:45 p.m., live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12. For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com .
On a chilly night in Indiana, odds-on favorites were hot at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino as both of the heavy favorites delivered in the $21,000 featured trot and pace on Saturday, April 30. Each of the featured events saw familiar faces in the winner’s circle as both races produced repeat winners from the previous week.
Freaky Feet Pete, the 2015 Breeders Crown Champion for three-year-old pacing colts, turned in another dominant performance to score his second consecutive Hoosier Park victory in the $21,000 Invitational Pace. With regular driver Trace Tetrick at the lines, Freaky Feet Pete stopped the timer in 1:50.2 over a sloppy rated track.
Using the same front-running tactics as the previous week, Freaky Feet Pete dictated first half fractions of :27.1 :55.2 while Fearless Diablo and LeWayne Miller benefitted from a pocket trip. With the heavy betting favorite calling the shots on the front, the rest of the field remained in single file line down the backside.
Bluehourpower and Ricky Macomber Jr. were the first to commit to the outer flow but Freaky Feet Pete began to inch away from the field with every stride. With a three-quarter clocking in 1:23, Freaky Feet Pete began to put his talent on display as the rest of the field struggled to stay within striking distance.
Freaky Feet Pete cruised to the wire under a hand drive from Tetrick finishing six and a half lengths in front of Fearless Diablo. SF Donttellonme and Joey Casagranda used a late closing kick to round out the trifecta.
With the win, Freaky Feet Pete notched the second win of his four-year-old campaign and 26th career victory from 29 lifetime outings. The homebred son of Rockin Image-Skyway Lori has now earned $1,136,724 lifetime for his owners Mary Jo Rheinheimer and Marty Rheinheimer.
In much the same fashion on the trotting side of things, Hannelore Hanover and Ricky Macomber Jr. extended their winning streak as they easily handled an abbreviated field of six in the $21,000 Invitational trot in 1:52.4 over a track rated good. Hannelore Hanover was unhurried from the gate and settled along the rail in third behind Churita and Trace Tetrick who reached the first quarter mark in :28. Macomber Jr. gave Hannelore Hanover the green light down the backside and the Ron Burke trainee easily reached the front to dictate middle fractions of :57 and 1:24.4.
As the field turned for home, Hannelore Hanover was two lengths in front of her next closest competitor and used a :28 final panel to coast home three lengths to the good. Churita maintained her position to finish second while Rever Ever rallied nicely to finish third. As the heavy betting favorite, Hannelore Hanover returned $3.20 at the betting window.
The four-year-old daughter of Swan For All-High Sobriety notched her fourth consecutive victory and remains undefeated in four starts in 2016. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, and F. Baldachino, Hannelore Hanover has now amassed $345,324 lifetime.
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Tuesday, May 3 with a 14-race card that is set to begin at 5:45 p.m. The 160-day racing season will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com
Freaky Feet Pete, the 2015 Breeders Crown Champion for three-year-old pacing colts, was a dominant winner in his 2016 debut on Saturday, April 23 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino in the featured event on the card, a $21,000 Invitational Pace. Driven by regular pilot Trace Tetrick, Freaky Feet Pete finished two lengths in front of his next closest competitor, stopping the timer in 1:49.4.
The Larry Rheinheimer trainee wasted no time as he came away from the gate firing to reach the front in an uncontested opening panel of :27. Nitro and John DeLong benefitted from a pocket trip while Bluehourpower and Ricky Macomber Jr. were next in line, third.
Freaky Feet Pete leisurely strolled down the backside to reach the second panel in :55.2 while the rest of the field remained in single file line approaching the final turn. With a three-quarter clocking a 1:23, Freaky Feet Pete once again showed the flashes of speed that has made the pacer so popular.
Under no urging from Tetrick, Freaky Feet Pete found another gear and utilized a :26.4 closing quarter to pace away from the field. Nitro maintained his position to finish second while Bluehourpower rounded out the trifecta. As the overwhelming favorite, Freaky Feet Pete returned $2.10 to his backers at the betting window.
“We are glad to have that one out of the way,” Rheinheimer noted in the winner’s circle with a smile. “There’s a lot of pressure, especially with his first start, but he qualified well and he seems to be as good as ever so that’s all we can ask for.”
“I told Trace (Tetrick) good luck and be safe, that’s it, that’s all I ever tell him,” he continued. “I felt good about things tonight, he (Freaky Feet Pete) felt really good warming up.”
With the win, Freaky Feet Pete notched the first win of his four-year-old campaign and 25th career victory from 28 lifetime outings. The homebred son of Rockin Image-Skyway Lori has now earned $1,126,224 lifetime for his owners Mary Jo Rheinheimer and Marty Rheinheimer. Rheinheimer’s star pupil will look to make another start at his home track before being pointed to Northfield Park for his first major stakes engagement of the season, the $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie at Northfield Park on May 21.
“As far as the rest of the season, we will see how it goes,” Rheinheimer continued. “He will be in all the stakes races around here and we will take him to a few other places, Toronto and the Meadowlands, if all goes well. We are going to take it week by week with him.”
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Tuesday, April 26 with a 14-race card that is set to begin at 5:45 p.m. The 160-day racing season will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 12.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment and live racing schedule at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com
The four-year-old son of Rockin Image-Skyway Lori will look to tackle five other rivals in the featured event of the evening, a $21,000 Invitational Pace, and has been installed as the 2-5 morning line favorite in the evening’s 11th race. Trained by Larry Rheinheimer, Freaky Feet Pete will be driven by his regular pilot, Trace Tetrick.
A winner of over $1.1 million in lifetime earnings and a story book three-year-old campaign, Freaky Feet Pete has had two qualifying outings at Hoosier Park in 2016. In his first qualifier, Freaky Feet Pete cruised through fractions of :27.2, :56.1 and 1:24.3 before kicking home in :27.4 to win by nine and a quarter lengths in 1:52.2 in less than favorable weather conditions. His second qualifier came last weekend at Hoosier Park where he finished 13 lengths in front of his next closest competitor and stopped the timer in 1:51.4.
“He was very strong,” Tetrick noted after his qualifier. “I think he’s grown up some, he is definitely ready to get back to work; he loves his job and seems as strong as ever.”
On Saturday, Freaky Feet Pete will start from post six and look to put an end to the two race win streak put together by the Dylan Davis trainee, Fearless Diablo. Fearless Diablo has captured back to back wins in Hoosier Park’s featured pace, most recently scoring in 1:51.3.
Freaky Feet Pete has amassed $1,115,724 from 24 wins and two seconds in 27 trips lifetime. In fact, he’s only finished off the board once in his career and that was in his third career start as a freshman, when he finished fourth. Indiana’s three-year-old pacing colt of the year will likely make another start at his home track before shipping to Northfield Park for his first major stakes race of the year, the $200,000 Battle of Lake Erie on May 21.
Saturday’s 14-race card at Hoosier Park is set to get underway at 5:45 p.m. Hoosier Park’s ‘Family Fun Days’ return this Saturday and will continue each weekend throughout the entirety of the harness racing season. Activities will include face painting, live entertainment, games and winner’s circle giveaways. Saturday’s live racing card will be followed by a free performance by The Ripple Effect in Hoosier Park’s Terrace Showroom.
For more information on the upcoming entertainment or live racing schedule, please visit www.hoosierpark.com.
Hoosier Park Racing & Casino’s reigning leading driver, Trace Tetrick scored a grand slam on Friday, April 8 and with it, surpassed Ricky Macomber Jr. in the all-time leading driver standings at Hoosier Park. Both Tetrick and Macomber Jr. are two of the most well-known drivers at Hoosier Park and have been recognized for their accomplishments on and off the track.
Heading into Friday’s 14-race card, Tetrick needed just one victory to tie Macomber Jr.’s record of 1,480 wins and two to surpass him in the standings.
The victory with Croquet Rose in the evening’s eighth race notched win number 1,480 in Tetrick’s career at Hoosier Park and tied him with Ricky Macomber Jr. for the top spot at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. After he guided Double A Cash Hall to victory in the $15,000 Open II Trot just two races later, Tetrick moved into the lead on the all-time leading driver standings with 1,481 trips to the Hoosier Park winner’s circle.
Tetrick then went on to secure his position atop the list and won with Shakeitformegear in the very next race and again in the evening’s 13th race with My Tweed Heart leaving him with 1,483 wins and counting. Macomber Jr., who has held the title since 2014, has 1,480 victories at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino and counting.
Tetrick has stamped himself in the Hoosier Park history books as he also holds the records for most wins in a single season, a record that he established last year with 325 victories. Tetrick lead the leading driver standings from start to finish in 2015 to secure his 4th leading driver title at Hoosier Park.
The Southern Illinois native started driving in 2003 and has since surpassed the $33 million mark in purse earnings in the bike. He recorded his best season to date in 2015 as he notched 423 victories and his second consecutive season with over $4.8 million in purse earnings. Tetrick also celebrated his 3,000 career driving win at Hoosier Park last season.
With multiple stakes wins to his credit, Tetrick’s career reached new heights when he won the $531,250 Breeders Crown final for three-year-old male pacers at Woodbine Racetrack with Freaky Feet Pete. The 29-year-old reignsman was also voted the pari-mutuel driver of the year in the state of Indiana in both 2014 and 2015.
Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino continues on Saturday, April 9 at 5:45 p.m. with a 14-race card. The live racing schedule will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and continue through November 12.
Freaky Feet Pete returned to his home state of Indiana and turned in another dominating performance to score his fourth consecutive victory, this time thrilling his hometown crowd in 1:49.3 in the $285,500 Monument Circle Pace at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, October 30. Driven by regular pilot Trace Tetrick, Freaky Feet Pete used a pocket trip to his advantage to best harness racing’s top-rated horse, Wiggle It Jiggleit, late in the lane to win by a length and a quarter.
With the win, Freaky Feet Pete became the sport’s newest millionaire as he pushed his lifetime earnings passed the $1 million mark and notch his 23rd lifetime victory from 26 starts. Freaky Feet Pete returned to Hoosier Park fresh off a stretch rallying victory as the post time favorite to become the first-ever Indiana sired horse to capture the $531,250 Breeders Crown three-year-old male pacing event at Woodbine on October 24.
As the wings of the gate folded, Montrell Teague had the post-time favorite Wiggle It Jiggleit pointed to the front from the rail and Freaky Feet Pete left just enough from post three to grab a pocket seat. With Wiggle It Jiggleit dictating the fractions the race was shaping up to be a repeat of the last time these two superstars met in Indiana Sires Stakes action earlier in the season with Freaky Feet Pete earning the victory.
Wiggle It Jiggleit dictated fractions of :26.3, :55.1 and 1:23.2 and as the field turned for home the stage was set once again for an epic battle to the wire. Tetrick tipped Freaky Feet Pete to the outside but Wiggle It Jiggleit wasn’t giving it up easily. Using a :26 final quarter, Freaky Feet Pete saved his best for last to find the wire first.
“I got the trip I wanted or probably the trip I needed,” Tetrick noted in the winner’s circle. “It’s hard to come from off the pace especially against a horse like that (Wiggle It Jiggleit). Those are two great horses out there.”
“I knew Montrell’s horse was sharp tonight,” he continued. “It took mine a little while to get in full-tilt, a little while to get by him but he paced that last eighth of the mile hard, all the way to the wire. He loves his job and loves to go fast.”
The son of Rockin Image and Pilgrim’s Punch mare Skyway Lori is trained by Larry Rheinheimer and owned by Mary Jo and Marty Rheinheimer. Freaky Feet Pete paid $4.00 to win as the public’s second choice. Wiggle It Jiggleit paid $2.20 to show and My Hero Ron provided $3.80 to his supporters for his third place finish.
“We are on top of the world,” Larry Rheinheimer noted in the winner’s circle. “We were a little concerned bringing him back 6 days later but we wanted to bring him back here to Hoosier Park. This whole experience with him has been a lot of fun, something I never imagined.”
The match-up between Wiggle It Jiggleit and Freaky Feet Pete was the pinnacle of a stakes-filled 14-race card at Hoosier Park with purses distributed throughout the evening over the $1 million mark. Just one race earlier, harness racing’s richest Standardbred ever, Foiled Again turned in a gritty performance to take the $165,000 Hoosier Park Pacing Derby. With regular pilot Yannick Gingras at the controls, Foiled Again dictated fractions of :27.3, :56.1 and 1:24 before he began to feel pressure from the rest of the field. Using a :26.3 fought off JK Endofanera and Brett Miller along with stablemate All Bets Off and Matt Kakaley to find the wire first.
“I love the rail, I wanted to control the race,” Gingras noted in the winner’s circle. “He’s as tough as they come and he usually tells you about the 5/8 how he feels and tonight, he felt good. He swelled up and when he does that, he’s usually tough to pass.”
Trained by Ron Burke, Foiled Again notched his third victory from 20 seasonal outings and 86th lifetime win from 244 starts. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, and the JJK Stables, the 11-year-old gelding has now earned $379,132 for the season and over $7.2 million lifetime.
Devil Child and Tim Tetrick kicked-off the stakes action for the evening in a big kind of way in the $101,000 USS Indianapolis Memorial Pace for three-year-old pacing fillies. With a final time of 1:50.3, Devil Child scored her second consecutive victory and re-established a seventeen year-old track record at Hoosier Park with the win. The previous mark of 1:50.4 was established by Galleria and George Brennan in 1998.
Trained by Chris Oakes, Devil Child sat patiently along the rail in third through fractions of :26.4, :55.2, and 1:23 before angling out for racing room turning for home. Recording a :27 final quarter, the daughter of American Ideal-Kattimon coasted to the wire three-lengths in front of the pace-setting Sassa Hanover and Matt Kakaley. Devil Child recorded her sixth seasonal win from 20 outings for owners Susan Oakes and Crawford Farms, LLC.
On the trotting side of the stakes action, Muscle Baby Doll turned in another impressive performance to score her second consecutive victory at Hoosier Park, tonight in the $140,000 Crossroads of America Stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies. After scoring in a track-record setting time of 1:53.1 in stakes action last week, Muscle Baby Doll dug in gamely late in the lane to hold off Bright Baby Blues to get the win for driver David Miller in 1:54.2.
Owned by F. Bellino & Sons, LLC, the daughter of Muscle Mass-Have You Ever notched her 10th victory of the season from 14 starts. Muscle Baby Doll has now amassed $457,720 lifetime.
In the very next division, Crazy Wow and Tim Tetrick pulled the slight 6-1 upset in the $270,000 Carl Erksine Trot for three-year-old colt and gelding trotters scoring in 1:54. The 2015 Hambletonian winning Pinkman was heavily favored at the betting windows and dictated early fractions of :27.2, :57, and 1:25.3 before succumbing to the long Hoosier Park stretch. Tetrick had Crazy Wow well placed turning for home and the three-year-old colt did the rest.
It was the eighth win of the season for the son of Crazed-No Pan No Gan who is trained by Ron Burke and also the fourth win of the night for Tetrick. Owned by Our Horse Cents Stable, JT45, J&T Silva Stable and Deo Volente Farms, Crazy Wow has now earned $905,837 this season.
For more information on the upcoming live racing and entertainment at Hoosier Park, please visit www.hoosierpark.com. The live racing schedule at Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 14.
Freaky Feet Pete continued his divisional dominance at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Thursday, September 17 as he cruised to his ninth straight victory in the featured event of the evening, the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Guided by regular driver Trace Tetrick, Freaky Feet Pete coasted to the wire under a hand drive to finish six lengths in front of his closest competitor and stop the timer in 1:49.4.
Leaving from post seven in the field of ten, Freaky Feet Pete was unhurried from the gate and settled along the rail in sixth. John DeLong had Swing City on a mission to the front and the Erv Miller trainee dictated first half fractions of :26.2 and :54.1 before ever feeling a threat from the rest of the field.
Tetrick gave Freaky Feet Pete the green light just past the half and the sophomore colt appeared to do the rest on autopilot. Ima Full Time Job and Jason Dillander were first to commit to the outer flow but were unable to gain on the leader. Freaky Feet Pete reached the leader’s wheel at the third station in 1:22.2 and by the time the field turned for home his lead was ever-increasing.
While the rest of the field struggled to stay within striking distance, Freaky Feet Pete found another gear and used a :26.2 final quarter to find the wire first. American Virgin and Ricky Macomber Jr. rallied for second while Kelly D and Dale Hiteman rounded out the trifecta. As the overwhelming favorite, Freaky Feet Pete returned $2.10 at the betting window.
“I knew there would be a lot of early speed in the race,” Tetrick said after the victory. “I didn’t want to get tangled up with anyone early so I just wanted to float out of there and catch cover. I asked him a little around the last turn and that’s really all I had to do. He did the rest. He’s a great horse and loves what he’s doing out there.”
Trained by Larry Rheinheimer, Freaky Feet Pete scored his 18th career victory from 20 lifetime outings. The son of Rockin Image-Skyway Lori has now earned $482,100 lifetime for his owners Mary Jo Rheinheimer and Marty Rheinheimer, who incidentally celebrated a birthday today with the win. Rheinheimer’s star pupil will now be aimed for the $100,000 Jenna’s Beach Boy Invitational Pace at Hoosier Park on Saturday, September 26 for his next engagement.
“I paid the supplement so we will go to the Jenna’s Beach Boy next week,” Larry Rheinheimer said after the win. “As for the rest of the season, we will take it one start at a time. We’ll get through these next couple of starts here and go from there but we’ll do whatever is best for the horse. He will tell us what he wants to do. We haven’t changed anything so far and it seems to be working.”
The $100,000 Jenna’s Beach Boy Invitational Pace will be part of a star-studded card slated for Saturday, September 26 at Hoosier Park. The evening’s 14-race card will also include the $275,000 Kentuckiana Stallion Management Stakes trot and pace and the $225,000 Centaur Trotting Classic.
Live racing will continue at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, September 18 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., live racing will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 14.
When she is scoring down or on her way to the gate, Churita’s adoring fans line up on the fence at Hoosier Park nudging one another with their elbows and talking softly amongst themselves about how fabulous she looks. It’s as if the Anderson oval is her very own personal runway and all in attendance are only there to witness her.
“You really can just see it in her eyes,” said her owner Jack Porter. “It is also in the way she carries herself and holds her head.”
The ‘it’ Porter is referring to is star power and this Indiana champion possesses it in spades. The 3-year-old daughter of Airzoom Lindy and the Yankee Paco mare Stonebridge Volare may not be an international superstar, but she is certainly a local celebrity.
The reasons for this deep reverence are well-deserved as Matt Rheinheimer’s charge has cruised to a career record of 18-16-1-1, collected $422,050 and established a track record of 1:53.4s, which is her swiftest mile to date. She is perfect in eight trips to the gate this season and will seek to add luster to her already sparkling resume on Friday (August 14) when she takes on nine rivals in her $75,000 Indiana Sire Stakes Final. It is the seventh race on the $300,000 Dan Patch Stakes card with an approximate post time of 7:31 p.m. and regular reinsman Trace Tetrick will be holding the lines. She will commence her journey to the wire from the rail.
“My job is just to keep her happy,” Rheinheimer said. “She has already more than exceeded my expectations so anything she does makes me happy. The minute she steps on the track she is all business and you could never ask anything more from her than that.”
Churita has been defying the odds since Porter purchased her as a yearling for a fair racing prospect. She was not even his or Rheinheimer’s first choice, but she went for the right price and is only competing in the Sire Stakes program because that is what she was eligible to. In fact, she is the only horse Porter has owned after several decades in the business that has competed at this level.
“When other trainers come up to you and say if they had to lose to anyone they are glad it was her because we deserve it is an indescribable feeling,” Porter said. “And to be honest, I never anticipated she would be undefeated at this point of the season. I really thought Golden Big Stick was going to give her some competition and would improve from two to three, but even when she has someone look her in the eye she just digs in. She doesn’t want to let another horse go by.”
Most trotting fillies do have a bit of an attitude and Churita, while not quite a diva, does have her own air about her.
“She is terrific to be around and always takes care of herself,” Rheinheimer said. “But there are times when you just need to leave her alone. She needs to do her own thing and she lets you know that.”
Despite her devoted minions and her domination of the local competition, this young lady will remain at her home base until the end of the season.
“We have her nominated to a couple stakes like the Circle City,” Porter said. “But it all depends on her. She doesn’t owe us a thing and anything else she does is like icing on the cake. If she is sound and healthy we will go, but if not that is perfectly fine too.”
Rheinheimer admitted he was always nervous during the filly’s campaign last year as he was astonished at how talented she was, but this year it’s different. Not that he still isn’t on edge about her at times, but he now can enjoy her a bit more.
“I am in awe of her,” he said. “Not that I don’t get anxious at times, but I just am astonished how good she really is. She is by far the best horse I have trained and I feel so very fortunate to have her. You always wish for a horse like this to come along and when they finally do it’s something very special.”
Churita’s $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final will be part of the star studded card at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, August 14 that features the 2015 installment of the $300,000 Dan Patch Stakes. The entire racing card will be part of a special weekend tagged as the “Dan Patch Festival Weekend” and will feature extreme entertainment, giveaways, and racing. The thrill-themed weekend will showcase some of the most notable names in harness racing alongside free fireworks, giveaways, and interactive family-friendly entertainment. First post is 5:15 p.m.
Story By: Kimberly French
Freaky Feet Pete turned in another dominating performance to find the winner’s circle at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, August 7 in his split of the $20,000 Indiana Sires Stakes eliminations for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings, extending his win streak to five in the process. Driven by regular pilot Trace Tetrick, Freaky Feet Pete reached the wire five lengths in front of his closest competitor to stop the clock in 1:50.1 and notch his fifth win of the season.
Tetrick took no chances and sent the overwhelming 1-9 favorite to the front from post eight in the field of nine. Freaky Feet Pete leisurely strolled through fractions of :26.2, :54.4 and 1:23.2 while the rest of the field remained in single file order. Kelly D and Sam Widger benefitted from a pocket trip while Sumthintallnstrong and James Yoder began the first over bid down the backside.
Doing what Freaky Feet Pete has done all season long, he began to separate himself from the rest of the field turning for home. With a four length lead at the top of the stretch, Freaky Feet Pete used a :26.4 final panel to coast on to the wire under a hand drive from Tetrick.
Sumthintallnstrong rallied late in the lane for second place honors while Swing City and Andy Shetler rounded out the trifecta. Freaky Feet Pete returned $2.10 to his backers at the window.
“He surprises me every time he’s on the track,” trainer Larry Rheinheimer said in the winner’s circle after the win. “We don’t give Trace any instructions but he always takes care of him and does what he needs to do.”
Freaky Feet Pete scored his 14th career victory from 16 lifetime outings. The homebred son of Rockin Image-Skyway Lori has now earned $397,100 for his owners Mary Jo Rheinheimer and Marty Rheinheimer. Rheinheimer’s star pupil will be aimed next for the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final at Hoosier Park on Friday, August 14 but says the possibility of venturing out of the state of Indiana is not out of the question.
“There’s a little bit of down time here,” Rheinheimer continued. “So, if something fits in the schedule, we’ll certainly look into it. As far as the Breeders Crown goes, that’s definitely still a possibility for us. If he keeps racing well and going in the right direction, he deserves the chance to prove himself.”
Royal Rex and Tyler Smith took the next split of the stakes action scoring in 1:52.3 for trainer Roger Cullipher. Staging a big rally late in the lane, Royal Rex dug in gamely to overcome This Baby Rocks and LeWayne Miller. With the win, the son of Sand Shooter-Go Ginny Go notched his third win of the season from 15 outings. Royal Rex has now earned $50,919 for owner Nathan Sea.
The Big Year and LeWayne Miller pulled a slight upset to take the final division of the stakes action, scoring in a lifetime best of 1:51.0. Using a near gate to wire effort, The Big Year held on gamely late in the lane to score the victory. Trained by Erv Miller, The Big Year scored his fourth win of the season from 15 starts. The son of Panspacificflight-Aristocracy has now earned $171,203.
All three of the evening’s elimination winners successfully earned a spot in the fourth $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes final for three-year-old pacing colts slated for the star studded 14-race card on Friday, August 14 at Hoosier Park. With a daily post time of 5:15 p.m., live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 14.