Pennsylvania’s Day at the Races 2017 kicked off Parx Racing’s fall season, and proved to be another exciting day in Pennsylvania racing. Despite the rain that threatened, then rolled in, before the first stakes race, over 80 PA-breds showed what they’re made of as they battled down the stretch in each of the card’s 10 races.
The Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association (PHBA) treated Pennsylvania breeders and their guests, owners, and trainers to a buffet lunch, complete with a private third-floor view of the track. Keith Jones, retired NHL player, current hockey studio analyst for NBCSN, and member of competitive nature, as he has throughout his career, and never gave up. He took on his rivals in the stretch, grabbed the lead near the wire, and won with the determination that he’s known for.
Winning the Medal and his connections celebrated for the second year in a row as the six-year-old son of Medallist rallied to win his second $100,000 Marshall Jenney Stakes. Even with the race being forced off of the turf due to the nonstop rain, the gelding provided the biggest upset of the day, blasting from last at the half-mile pole and flying by his competitors to for the win. Bred by Rick Molineaux, owned by R and L Racing, and trained by Patricia Farro, he went off at 15-1, paying $32.
Ted Vanderlaan, brother to Dr. Teresa Garofalo, namesake of the fourth stakes race of the day, was in attendance to cheer on the winner and celebrate his sister. Garofalo was the treasurer of the PHBA board before she passed away in 2010 from acute myeloid leukemia. Her equine practice in West Chester, Smokey’s Run Farm, focused on equine reproduction, and the stakes in her name is a special one to the PHBA. The winner, three-year-old Grand Prix -- a half-sister to 2016 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint-G1 winner Finest City -- had her own cheering section with breeder and owner Hank Nothhaft and the crew that traveled to Pennsylvania to watch the filly run. Under jockey Jose Ferrer, the daughter of Tale of the Cat went to the front after the first sixteenth of a mile and never looked back to win by a length and a half. Grand Prix won the New Start Stakes at Penn National back in June, and the win in the Garofalo gives her a second black-type win.
As the rain continued to fall, the $100,000 Mrs. Penny Stakes for fillies and mares aged three and up, was also moved off the turf. Jockey Brian Pedroza and four-year-old filly Great Soul, by Great Notion, opened a three-length lead with an eighth of a mile to go and held off latecomer Imply for a close win. Great Soul was bred and is owned by Steve and Jane Long, and trained by Tom Proctor.
We extend a sincere thank you to all of our members and guests who attended, as well as the board members and special guests who presented the gifts in each race. We’re looking forward to a successful and productive 2018 breeding season and wish everyone the best of luck in the coming year. Visit www.pabred.com for a full gallery of the day’s photos!