ANDERSON, Ind. — After the hoopla of the Belmont Stakes was put to rest, the standardbreds took to the Hoosier Park track for the finals in leg 1 of the Indiana Sires Stakes.
There were four races, each carrying a total purse of $75,000.
The opening race was for 3-year-old fillies and the beginning was a shuffling exercise among Jessie’s Song, Justice Dream and Terracina As. It turns out they were just keeping first place warm for the eventual winner.
Andi’s Alana, driven by Lewayne Miller, caught that lead trio on the far turn and won convincingly. The time for the trot was 1:56 and the payout was $2.40, $2.10 and $2.10. The bettors were on the money because it was the horse’s third win in as many starts this season.
The next race was also for fillies of the same age but this time pacers.
The pattern was similar but the end result happened sooner. Halfway down the backstretch, Candy’s A Virgin surged to the front for driver Trace Tetrick and was never seriously threatened.
Candy’s A Virgin won for the second time in four starts this season and with a career best time of 1:52. It was the fourth win on the card for Tetrick, who came into the weekend tied with Tyler Smith for most victories in the meet. The win paid $4.80, $4 and $2.40.
Rick Moore, general manager of racing for Hoosier Park, was pleased with the crowd. “I thought the turnout was fantastic,” he said. “I thought the energy was very good. There was some sadness (when California Chrome failed to win the Belmont). But it is a grueling five weeks for those horses.”
He was also pleased that the crowd, at least much of it, remained for the rest of the live racing card after the Belmont. “I didn’t see a mass exodus after the race,” said Moore. “This is what we’re all about as a destination for entertainment. We had great weather. It was a great day.”
From the beginning it seemed the track was super fast on this night. The first raced on the card was a pace for non-winners of $15,500 over the past five starts.
Mike Micallef steered That’ll Be The Rei to a victory in a time of 1:49.3. That was close to a second quicker than the 4-year-old’s previous best time. The win paid 44.60, $3.20 and $2.80.