By Michael Chamberlain.
THEGREATCOLLECTION IS GREAT IN THE EVANGELINE DOWNS PRINCE; COUNTRY CANDY IS SWEET IN THE EVANGELINE DOWNS PRINCESS
LEADING RIDER COLBY HERNANDEZ SWEEPS BOTH SATURDAY STAKES
OPELOUSAS, LA – Evangeline Downs closed out its 2016 Thoroughbred season on Saturday night with a 12-race program that included the last pair of stakes races for the year. The $60,000 Evangeline Downs Prince was won by Kathleen Amaya and Raffaele Centofanti’s Thegreatcollection, while the $60,000 Evangeline Downs Princess was annexed by Keene Thoroughbreds LLC’s Country Candy.
Thegreatcollection broke slowly from the inside post position under jockey Colby Hernandez before hugging the rail in the six-furlong test for 2-year-old colts and geldings. After Shackelford’s Storm led through an opening quarter-mile in 22.58 seconds, Thegreatcollection began a rally as the field reached the top of the stretch and the rail opened up to his liking. Once the rail opened up for him, Thegreatcollection rolled through impressively and drew off to a 4 ¼-length victory in a final time of 1:12.81 for the six furlongs on the sloppy main track.
Thegreatcollection remained undefeated in his brief career with the victory, moving his record to 2-for-2. He earned $36,000 for the win, which increases his lifetime earnings to $46,400. The Efren Loza, Jr. trainee was bred in Florida by Kathleen Amaya, Alexandro Centofanti, and Raffaele Centofanti. The colt was sired by Saint Anddan and is out of the Cactus Ridge mare, Cactus Cadillac.
Thegreatcollection returned $17.40 to win, $11.80 to place and $6.40 to show. Dixieland Native, a 33-1 longshot, rallied for second and paid $31.00 to place and $16.80 to show. U S Officer, who was sent off as the 8-5 betting favorite, finished third and paid $2.80 to show.
Country Candy gave leading jockey Colby Hernandez a sweep of the stakes activity on closing night as the 2-year-old filly scored a half-length win in the Evangeline Downs Princess. The J. R. Caldwell trainee won the race in front-running style after carving out fractions of 22.52 for the quarter-mile and 46.57 for the half. Chases Dixie Belle made a late bid to grab second while Empire Strikes finished another ¾ of length back in third. Country Candy covered the six furlongs in a time of 1:13.25.
The victory by Country Candy was the second of her four-race career. She earned $36,000 for Saturday’s score which raised her lifetime earnings mark to $70,780.
Bred in Texas by Keith Asmussen, Country Candy is a gray or roan filly by Intimidator out of the Candy Ride (ARG) mare, Trifolium.
Bet down late to odds of just over even money, Country Candy returned $4.20 to win, $2.60 to place and $2.20 to show. Chases Dixie Belle was worth $3.60 to place and $2.40 to show. Empire Strikes paid $2.80 to show.
Evangeline Downs will resume live racing on Wednesday, September 28 when the American Quarter Horse season begins. It will a 46-day meeting run on a Wednesday through Saturday basis through Saturday, December 17. Post time for the American Quarter Horse season at Evangeline Downs will be 5:35pm Central Time.
For more information on the Thoroughbred season at Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website atwww.evdracing.com. Evangeline Downs’ Twitter handle is @EVDRacing and the racetrack is also accessible on Facebook at www.facebook.com/EvangelineDownsRacing.
For more information, contact Michael Chamberlain at 337-594-3000 Ext. 3149.