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Assessment leads all the way, captures feature, moves into No. 2 all-time in earnings | Emerald Downs
For the Reporter
Still going strong at age 10, Assessment took the early lead and never looked back Thursday while scoring a 4¾-length victory over Chu and I in the $14,800 Carl's Jr. Purse for 3-year-olds and up.
Ridden by Gallyn Mitchell, Assessment ran one mile in 1:35.92 and paid $6.80, $3.80 and $3. Mitchell also was aboard Assessment when the Jump Start gelding won the 2009 Longacres Mile, and has been aboard the big bay for his last eight wins at Emerald Downs.
Owned and trained by Howard Belvoir, Assessment earned $8,140 for Friday's victory to leapfrog Noosa Beach into second-place on the track's all-time earnings list with $465,430. Wasserman – also owned and trained by Belvoir – is No. 1 with $575,024.
Assessment led through fractions of :24.70, :48.64, 1:12.22 and 1:24.03. He owned a two-length lead into the stretch, and drew off to win with total authority.
Assessment is 11-12-7 in 57 overall starts with lifetime earnings of $528,540. At Emerald Downs his record is 11-10-3 in 40 starts, and the $465,430 in earnings is $125 more than the great Noosa Beach earned from 2008-2012.
Chu and I, the longest shot on the board at 7-to-1, re-rallied to finish second under Jennifer Whitaker and paid $7.20 and $3.40.
Surfliner edged He's a Cruiser by a head for third place and paid $3.60 to show.
He's a Cruiser, the 7-to-5 betting favorite, had traffic problems and suffered his first loss after five straight victories.
Dare Me Devil hopped at the start and finished last.
Belvoir had three wins on the nine-race card. ... 10-year-old Assessment, 7-year-old Heza Witch Doctor ($9.80) and 3-year-old first-time starter Photo Safari ($20). ... Jennifer Whitaker rode the latter two winners for her first riding double of the meet. ... With three wins, Belvoir jumped into fourth place in the trainers' standings with 15 wins. ... First-time starter I Thought So ($5.40) won the Tony Lucarelli Memorial Purse under Leslie Mawing in :57.55 for five furlongs. The annual event honors the memory of Frank Lucarelli's son, who died in 2005 after a long and courageous battle with cancer. ... 7-year-old Oregon-bred He's a Goblin ($7.80) made it two straight wins and 17 for his career with a gate-to-wire victory under Jockey of the Week David G. Lopez in Thursday's opener. ... Stolen Forum came off the bench for a $34.20 upset under Ronald Richard in race seven, with Joe Toye saddling the winner for his 200th career Emerald Downs' victory. ... Stolen Forum was the key horse in a $0.50 Pick 5 that returned a whopping $5,581.35 third highest of the meet. ... Game Quick finished second but was disqualified and placed fifth for causing interference in the stretch run of race nine. ... Soi Phet ($24) prevailed in the $100,000 Bertrando Stakes for California-bred 3-year-olds and up on opening day of the eight-day Los Alamitos Thoroughbred meet in Cypress, Calif. A 6-year-old Tizbud gelding, Soi Phet ran one mile in 1:34.50 over the reconfigured strip. ... Live racing continues Friday with a Fourth of July holiday program at 2 p.m.