SHAKOPEE, MN – The second largest crowd in Canterbury Park history, 20,605, gathered on a gorgeous Minnesota summer day to enjoy four stakes races, the world(ish) Corgi championships and gourmet cupcakes on Saturday.
The top 3-year old state breds went to post in the$85,000 Minnesota Derby and Minnesota Oaks. Both races were contested over a mile and 70 yards on the main track.
In the Oaks, Canterbury Park Chairman Curtis Sampson’s homebred, Double Bee Sting ($4.00), romped to a six length victory as the favorite under Jareth Loveberry.
“This was going to be a riders race,” said Russ Sampson, manager of his father’s racing stable, “and Loveberry did a great job.”
Double Bee Sting stalked the pace for half the race and when Loveberry asked her to go, she took command and drew off to win easily in 1:43.54 for trainer Tony Rengstorf.
Two Be Royal ($4.60) was second and Pin Up Girl ($2.20) was third. The very tough filly Shipmate, last year’s 2-year old champion, cut the early fractions but faded to fourth. She had been off since last season having endured another round of colic surgery and was unable to get a prep race under her belt for the Oaks.
The Derby favorite, Hot Shot Kid, came into the Derby attempting to win five in a row since his maiden breaker at Oaklawn Park. The overwhelming favorite in the race, Hot Shot Kid broke alertly under Alex Canchari and was able to stalk the early pace on the inside. He struck to the lead at the top of the turn and initially looked to make a laugher out of the race until Got Even Smarter began to eat into the margin late.
Working hard, Orlando Mojica was able to get Got Even Smarter to within a head of Hot Shot Kid before Canchari popped his mount once and Hot Shot Kid showed another gear, securing a 3/4 length victory and paying $2.40 for the win. Hot Shot Kid stopped the clock at 1:42.91. Got Even Smarter returned $6.80 for the place while Fireman Oscar ($2.20) was nearly nine lengths back in third.
“He just went when that horse came up to him,” said Canchari. “I only tapped him once and still hand rode him. He’s the best I’ve ever ridden.”
“That was a bit closer than I would have liked,” smiled owner/breeder Warren Bush after the race.
“I really want to say that in addition to the money here, the people are first rate. There is no better place to run and track management is great.”
Bush generously donated $1000 to the family of injured jockey Paul Nolan after the win.
Earlier in the card, Blacks Cartel dominated the $41,000 Cash Caravan Stakes, winning the 440 yard dash in :22.113, clear of the field by a length.
“She’s a tough little girl,” said trainer Casey Black. “She’s done really well.”
Under Israel Suarez-Ricardo, Blacks Cartel returned $5.80 to her backers. Givinalittleerffort ($7.80) was second while Gramma Ella ($5.60) was third.
Familiar Rhythm ($15.60), ridden by Quincy Hamilton, was the longest priced winner of the four stakes races on the day. The 2-year old Algorithms gelding broke his maiden in the stake as a first time starter for owner Dale Schenian and trainer Francisco Bravo.
“It’s just wonderful,” said Schenian. “On a beautiful day like today – the dogs are running well, the horses are running well and it is just a beautiful day at Canterbury Park. There is one person to credit for this and that is Francisco Bravo.”
Familiar Rhythm outfinished Magic Cowboy ($4.40) by a neck, covering the five furlongs in :59.83. Drama in Danube ($4.20) was 6 1/2 lengths back in third.