Rainy Octoberfest Showcases Bright Stars
Rain for Octoberfest at Parx Racing has become the norm over the past few years, and October 11, 2014 was no different – yet the dreary weather failed to dampen the spirits of fans and horsemen alike. In the morning, runners of the human variety came out to participate in the annual 5K and Fun Mile Walk, which this year was moved to the turf course. Proceeds from the event benefitted The Foundation for Breast & Prostate Health.
When the first race post time rolled around at 12:25 PM, the skies were still dark and the track was sloppy, but there was no longer any rain falling from the clouds, and it stayed that way throughout the remainder of the afternoon.
Perhaps the most thrilling stakes event of the day occurred in the $75,000 Cornucopia Stakes, as the incredible Mike Aro-trained mare, Winning Image, made what could be her final career start a victorious one. The seven-year-old daughter of Southern Image was slated to be retired last year but was kept in training after being stranded at Parx during last winter’s quarantine. Winning Image rewarded her owner Martin Scafidi with an additional $199,100 in 2014, but is now scheduled to be offered as a broodmare prospect at the Keeneland November Sale.
She was ridden by Parx Racing Hall of Famer Tony Black in the Cornucopia, which brought his number of career victories to a brilliant 5,209. Winning Image has compiled a career record of 14 wins from 32 starts, and earned over $700,000.
Winning Image completed the six furlongs in 1:10.12. Finishing second was Munnings Sister, while Lady Sabelia was third.
The First Responder was Page McKenney’s second career stakes win. The four-year-old chestnut gelding finished up in 1:44.20 while drawing away by 2 1/4 lengths over Yougotthatgoinforu. Mezzano completed the trifecta.
In the $75,000 Plum Pretty Stakes for Pennsylvania-bred fillies and mares, three-year-old Bound under Kendrick Carmouche pulled away to an easy 3 1/2 length victory while posting a mild upset. The daughter of Jump Start paid $22.20 to win for owner Barlar LLC and trainer T. Bernard Houghton. Phil Aristone ran an unlucky second again, this time with favored Primo Via. Maybe Tonight ran third for Benny Perkins.
Earlier in the day, six gray geldings broke from the starting gate in the annual Silver Goblin Starter Handicap, a one mile race that was moved to the dirt course due to track conditions. Swilcan Stables’ Ricky Tick drew off at the top of the stretch to take the victory under Diego Sanchez, for trainer Butch Reid. Crafty Concorde ran second, 6 1/2 lengths ahead of even-money favorite Mr. Beer Goggles.