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Monday, 01 August 2022 15:44

SEA SPLENDOR WINS GP DERBY

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It was a slow start, but a great finish for Grande Prairie Derby 2022 champion horse Sea Splendor at Derby Day at The Horses At Evergreen Park at J.D.A. Raceway on Sunday.

The three-year-old Kentucky-bred was in sixth place out of seven horses just out of the gates, moved to fourth at the ¼ and ½ poles in the one-and-one-sixteen mile run before slipping into third at the ¾ pole and first down the stretch to win by 1 ¼ lengths and take home $15,370 of the $29,000 purse.

Richard Lunan was on board guiding Sea Splendor to its third win in seven starts for trainer Craig Smith and owners Highfield Investment Group Inc./Dialed In Racing/Graham Thoroughbreds/True North Stable

El Fantasma was second and Tricky Speedster third.

The GP Derby ended a great day of racing that also included the GP Oaks and the Bank of America John Deere Juvenile Challenge Canadian final four quarter-horses.

In the Oaks, for three-year-old fillies, Diplomatica, trained by Tim Rycroft and owned by Beckham Ranch, raced to the lead off the get-go and didn’t relinquish finishing well ahead of runner-up Steve Wonder Girl and third place finisher Mazie G.

Jockey J.C. Roque was in the saddle and helped the team to $14,575 of the $27,500 in prize money. It was Diplomatica’s second win in eight tries, but the horse has earned Beckham Ranch $48,081 since it starting racing in 2021.

One of the more intriguing races of the day was the John Deere Juvenile Challenge.

Sizzling Wagon, a 25-1 longshot, was the winner over 350 yards netting owner Buckey Stockwell $24,350 of the $50,731 purse. Andrew Wright was behind the reins and Glenn Willis is the horse’s trainer. Noble Rearing was second and Northfork Boss third.

The favorite going into the race was the Jerry Stojan-owned horse Professor Gee, which finished in fourth place.

Sizzling Wagon had now qualified to take part in the BOA John Deer Juvenile Championship Challenge in Philadelphia in the fall.

Another race of interest Sunday, at least for the Evergreen Park Racing Club, was a seven furlongs run that saw Club horse Ynotgiveitago finish in fifth place out of six horses. Buck West won that race with Equivocator second and Bradyaboss in third.

In another stakes race Sunday, this time for quarter horses three and up over 350 yards, Rocky League, with Ricardo Moreno on board, won the battle for owner/trainer Kevin Oberholtzer, and $5,305 of the $11,200 in purse money while Movin Timber was second and Obsessed Way third.

There were a couple of thoroughbred stakes races on Saturday.

In the Distaff Series, over six furlongs, Sterling Aly was the winner for trainer/owner Lyle Magnuson while in the Sprint Series, over six furlongs as well, El Dorado Storm took first for trainer Travis Robson and owners Charlie Weaselhead/Warner Many Bears/Max Gibb.

The weekend races marked the halfway point of the racing season at The Horses At Evergreen Park. Racing continues Saturdays and Sundays with 1:15 p.m. first posts until Sunday, August 28.

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