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Long-striding Zayda scores in Seattle Slew Handicap, Carabelle Harbor prevails in Kent Handicap | Emerald Downs News and Notes

Zayda and jockey Leslie Mawing rallied from last for a 2-1/4 length victory in the $50,000 Seattle Slew Handicap for 3-year-old colts and geldings. - Reed Palmer/Emerald Downs
Zayda and jockey Leslie Mawing rallied from last for a 2-1/4 length victory in the $50,000 Seattle Slew Handicap for 3-year-old colts and geldings.
— image credit: Reed Palmer/Emerald Downs

Zayda rallied from last place in a bulky 12-horse field Sunday and scored a convincing 2-¼-length victory in the $50,000 Seattle Slew Handicap for 3-year-old colts and geldings at Emerald Downs.

Ridden by Leslie Mawing at 119 lbs, Zayda ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.75 on a track upgraded to fast after the eighth race, and paid $13.20, $6.20 and $3.80. Blaine Wright is the trainer for owner Heidi Nelson of Bothell, Wash.

The victory was the second consecutive stakes score by Zayda, a Kentucky-bred son of Bluegrass Cat that finished second but was placed first in the June 26 Pepsi-Cola Handicap.

Zayda earned $27,500 for the victory and has a 3-0-1 mark in eight career starts with earnings of $81,690. He seems on a perfect course for the $65,000 Emerald Derby at 1 1/8 miles on Sunday, Aug. 14.

Couldabenthewhisky, the track's Top Juvenile Male last year, ran a big race to finish second after missing the Pepsi-Cola Handicap. Ridden by Gallyn Mitchell at high weight of 121 lbs, Couldabenthewhisky paid $4.80 and $3.40.

It was one-length back to third-place finisher Northern Indy, William Antongeorgi riding at 118 lbs, and a $5.20 show payoff. Jebrica, Winter Warlock, Come Away Home, Rainier Ice, Codys a Bobcat, Dugan Bill, Showme Yourfriends, Big Bad Brown and early leader El Gran Bebe completed the order of finish.

Riding Zayda, Mawing said he was concerned about weaving through traffic in a 12-horse field.

"I had to move a little earlier than I wanted just to make sure I didn't get into any trouble," Mawing said. "I knew there was a lot of speed in the race. I expected some of the front-runners to stop near the end, and I didn't want to weave around those horses.

"My horse was just free running on the backside. He was already gaining on the field before I even asked him. At the three-eighths pole I asked him a little bit and he just took off. I had so much horse under me, and he has such a humungous stride. He was a true professional today."

Carrabelle Harbor prevails in Kent Handicap


In the $50,000 Kent Handicap for 3-year-old fillies, Carrabelle Harbor, above, turned back Class Included into the stretch and posted a hard-earned one-length victory in 1:42.73 for 1 1/16 miles on a wet-fast track.

With Mitchell aboard at 118 lbs, Carrabelle Harbor paid $15, $4.30 and $3.40. Doris Harwood, adding to her record with her 51st stakes win at Emerald Downs, is the trainer for Bar C Racing Stables and Desert Rose Racing LLC.

An Oregon-bred by Harbor the Gold-Silver City Lilly, Carrabelle Harbor was a double stakes winner as a 2-year-old—both sprints—and has regained her sharp form for Harwood. She has a 4-2-0 record from eight starts with earnings of $98,391, including $27,500 for the Kent victory.

Class Included, the 7-to-5 betting favorite ridden by Mawing at 119 lbs, has finished second in both the Kent and Irish Day Handicaps, after capturing the Seattle Handicap by three lengths over Carrabelle Harbor on May 29. Class Included paid $2.60 and $2.10.

It was 5-¾ lengths back to Playful Argument, a 14-to-1 long shot with Pedro Terrero riding at 118 lbs, and a $3.40 show payoff. Judging Mimi, Elusive Noise and For You My Heart completed the order of finish.

Elusive Noise, the 3-to-1 second choice coming off a gate-to-wire victory in the Irish Day Handicap, drifted wide on the first turn, pressed the pace set by Carrabelle Harbor and weakened after six furlongs.

Carrabelle Harbor led through fractions of :22.86, :46.38 and 1:10.84, surrendered the lead briefly to Class Included into the stretch, but came again for the victory.

"Being on the inside of the other speed, the plan was to get the lead," Mitchell said. I wanted to get a length on the field and then get my horse to relax.

"I thought she would be able to get the distance because Doris (Harwood) and I have been working her for this distance in the mornings," Mitchell said "I can't believe the opening fraction was :22 and change because she was going so easily.

"I was able to give her a breather until the stretch, until I saw Leslie (Mawing and Class Included) working hard to get up to us. They might have gotten head-and-head, but I don't think they ever took the lead. "

The 3-year-old fillies reconvene Saturday, Aug. 13 for the $65,000 Washington Oaks at 1 1/8 miles.

NOTES: Vic-Tory Stable IV's He's All Heart ($7.80) and Mitchell combined to win the $14,800 sub-feature in 1:08.68 for six furlongs on a wet-fast track. Go With Gusto finished second and Wasserman earned $2,220 for finishing third, increasing his track record earnings mark to $530,217...Untilifindyou ($11.40) became the meet's first five-time winner with a head victory under Jose Zunino in the fourth race. The 4-year-old Souvenir Copy has won two straight for trainer Mary Pirone after winning three times earlier in the meet for Howard Belvoir...The only horse sired by Spiker became a winner as Maggie's Special ($4.60) scored her maiden victory under Zunino in the fourth race. A 7-year-old maiden with two runner-up finishes this year, Spiker has been gelded since mistakenly impregnating Bella Capini in 2006...Italian Boy ($2.80), owned by Luigi DiPietro, romped in the opener which was named in honor of late cousin, Victor DiPietro...Crew Leader ($6.50) handed 7-to-10 favorite St Liams Halo a nose defeat in the $50,000 S.W. Randall Plate at Hastings Racecourse, running a mile and one-sixteenth in 1:43 on a good track. Both 4-year-olds could be seen at Emerald Downs Aug. 21 in the $200,000 Longacres Mile (G3)... The victory on Zayda extended Mawing's streak to 14 of consecutive days with at least one win...Mawing finished the week with a 65-59 lead over Joe Crispin, who narrowed the gap with three wins on Sunday...In the trainers' race Howard Belvoir and Tim McCanna each saddled a winner, and Belvoir still leads McCanna by four wins 30-26... Live racing resumes Thursday with first post at 6 p.m...Meantime, simulcast racing is offered Mondays and Tuesdays at the Quarter Chute Café, and Wednesdays thru Sunday at Emerald Downs. Wednesday's action features opening day of the 2011 Del Mar season at 2 p.m.

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