Saturday, July 12, 2014

Arlington Stakes Recap: Arlington Handicap


Contact: Michael Adolphson

(847) 385-7558

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ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (July 21, 2014) - Donegal Racing's Finnegan's Wake stalked a moderate early pace, took the lead in the deep stretch and withstood a strong late challenge from  Admiral Kitten to capture Saturday's $200,000 Arlington Handicap at Arlington International Racecourse. 


Victor Espinoza was aboard the Dale Romans' charge, who stopped the timer in 2:05.42 over 1¼ miles of firm turf. It was the third career win for the 5-year-old son of Powerscourt, who raised his career bankroll to $605,675.


"I was really close to the pace" Espinoza said. "I wanted to be able to put him in the race. I was worried about the other horse (Avanzare). He was drifting down the lane, but other than that everything went well. It was a very close but he hit right on time at the wire but you never know because you can't see far inside. I just got lucky."


Rated at the back of the pack early, Admiral Kitten weaved his way through stretch traffic, only to fall a head short of the winner. War Dancer, the $1.80-1 post time favorite, finished another half-length back in third.


Finnegan's Wake, who last won a race on June 10, 2012, finished second that same year in Arlington's Grade I Secretariat Stakes and he returned to run fourth in last year's Grade I Arlington Million.


"It's been awhile since I've been this emotional over a win," said Jerry Crawford, principle owner of Donegal Racing. "This is a little homebred and he's been knocking on the door for so long now.  Victor couldn't have ridden him better.  Dale had him ready today. This is tremendous."


Finnegan's Wake paid $13.20, $5.80 and $3.20. Admiral Kitten returned $3.80 and $2.80.  War Dancer paid $2.60. 


Avanzare, who led the field of six through tepid splits of 26.36, 52.77, 117.64, and 1.42.28 tired to fourth.


Mister Mardi Gras and Infinite Magic completed the order of finish.








David ZennerSenior Manager of Communications

Arlington International Racecourse

2200 W. Euclid Ave. Arlington Heights IL 60006-0007

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Twitter: @dave_zenner, @arlingtonracing





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