Saturday, January 10, 2004 12:00 AM
FLORENCE, KY . . . January 10, 2004 . . . Saratoga Humor smiled all the way to the finish line Saturday at Turfway Park, winning the $50,000 Wishing Well Stakes by 1-3/4 lengths over the favorite, Emily Ring. The win gave owners William and Terry Baker back-to-back stakes victories with their homebred four-year-old filly, who won the $75,000 New Year’s Eve Stakes at Mountaineer 11 days ago.
Saratoga Humor broke seventh in the 10-horse field, but at a :21.83 clip she was a length in front by the first quarter. She held that lead steady until asked to make her move coming out of the turn. “This is the first time she’s raced here and the track was a little fast,” said winning rider Rafael Bejarano. “She got to the front very easy. When I went to moving about the quarter pole, my horse moved to the outside a little, so I corrected her one time. She’s very, very fast.”
The win was Bejarano’s third of four on the day.
“I told Rafael to let her break and let the race come to her,” said trainer Joe Cain. Cain has trained Saratoga Humor since her career began. “We tried to sell her at Fasig-Tipton as a yearling but she didn’t meet her reserve, so we brought her home and broke her and gave her to Joe to train,” said William Baker. Owners of Fairlawn Farm in Versailles, Kentucky, the Bakers have booked Saratoga Humor to Stormin Fever, standing at Airdrie Stud. Plans for the filly’s next race are undecided, but the Bakers plan to race her “a couple more times.”
Emily Ring, with Willie Martinez aboard, added to her string of place and show finishes by staying closest to the leader and coming out second best by 1-1/2 lengths over Ballado’s Halo. Ballado’s Halo lost her footing out of the gate but gathered herself and moved steadily up to take third. Tony D’Amico picked up the mount on Ballado’s Halo after scheduled rider Mike Morgan was shaken up in a spill in the seventh race.
Jenny’s Prospector, ridden by Mark Johnston, was beaten a head in a photo finish for third, a strong effort after her win in an allowance race at Turfway just last Sunday. Completing the order of finish were Growth Stock (Rodney Prescott), Senorita Ziggy (William Troilo), Kitty Carson (Jose Delgado), Of Legal Age (Jeff Johnston), Ponche de Leona (Jason Lumpkins), and Silver Sonnet (Daniel Coa).
The race, for fillies and mares four years old and up, covered six furlongs. The winning time was 1:10.33. Saratoga Humor paid $8.00 for the win.
Racing returns to Turfway at 1:10 p.m. EST on Sunday. The Winter/Spring Meet continues through April 1. Post time Wednesday through Friday is 5:30 p.m.