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Churchill Downs Race Day Notes for Sunday, June 2

| Churchill Downs Communications | 06/02/2013 #
  • Trainer Al Stall Jr. said Lea could make his next start in the Firecracker Handicap. Credit: Churchill Downs

LEA COULD RETURN IN FIRECRACKER

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Sunday, June 2, 2013)Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider’s homebred Lea made his 4-year-old debut in Saturday’s eighth race at Churchill Downs and now might be headed to the $150,000-added Firecracker Handicap (Grade II) after cruising to a 3 ¼-length victory in an off-the-turf allowance over a sloppy track.

“Right now, we are looking at the Firecracker and the Poker (GIII at Belmont Park on July 4), depending on what other horses do,” trainer Al Stall Jr. said.

It was the first start for Lea since winning the Commonwealth Turf (GIII) on the Matt Winn Turf Course in November and also his first start on dirt. Stall was not surprised at how well Lea handled the sloppy main track off more than a six-month layoff.

“It didn’t surprise me because we feel like he’s a good horse and he’s by a stud (First Samurai) who won the Champagne (GI) in a sea of mud at Belmont,” Stall said.

“There was nothing wrong with him. We just gave him a freshening, so they usually come back pretty decent. We’re excited. He’s ready for the second half of the year.”

Lea exited his victory in good order and will be vanned to Stall’s barn at Keeneland early this week to be prepared for his next start.

DAVIS MAKING MOST OF LIMITED OPPORTUNITIES

Apprentice jockey Dylan Davis is making the most of his limited opportunities in his first meet at Churchill Downs and entered Sunday with eight victories from 26 mounts, good enough for 10th in the jockey standings.

“I just came here to do my best and this is what it’s given me,” Davis said. “This is one of the best tracks in the country and I’m pretty blessed because I’m in the standings with guys like Calvin Borel, Robby Albarado and Shaun Bridgmohan. To see my name toward the top of the standings with those guys, it’s amazing.”

Davis, 19, is the son of jockey Robbie Davis, who has been aboard 3,382 winners and continues to ride a couple of the horses he trains.

“I talk to my dad almost every day and he’s really proud of me,” Davis said.

Davis also rides in the evenings at Indiana Downs and has nine victories from 43 starts, which puts him tied for eighth in the jockey standings.

“I hope this will help me,” Davis said. “You try to win to show how you can ride. I hope my career can take another step and someday I can be one of the top guys.”

Davis is unsure where he will ride at the conclusion of the Churchill Downs Spring Meet, which runs through June 30.

DOWN THE STRETCH

Kenny McCarthy, assistant to trainer Bill Mott, said Aristides (GIII) winner Scatman came out of his race in fine shape. There are no known plans for his next start. …

Silver Max exited his 9 ½-length victory in the off-the-turf Opening Verse in good order, according to trainer Dale Romans. The win broke a four-race losing streak for Silver Max, who won six races in a row between March and July last year.

“He’s a good horse and he’s coming back to his old self,” Romans said. “As well as he handled the dirt, I think it becomes an option now. He looks good today. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with him.”

Co-owner Mark Bacon and his 11-year-old son Max, who named Silver Max after himself, were present at Romans barn at Churchill Downs on Sunday morning to congratulate the bay son of Badge of Silver and reward him with peppermints. …

Dance Proudly got loose in the paddock before Saturday’s seventh race at Churchill Downs and struck Jack Bohannon, assistant to trainer Rusty Arnold. Bohannon escaped with minor injuries and was back at work at Churchill Downs early Sunday morning. “Just a little knocker in the head, but I’m fine,” Bohannon said.

THIS WEEK AT CHURCHILL DOWNS

Sunday, June 2

  • 10 races from 12:45-5:29 p.m. (Gates: 11:30 a.m.)
  • Feature (Race 9 at 4:59 p.m.): $52,000 alw, 3yo, 1 M
  • Family Fun Days Presented by Kroger on The Plaza Balcony from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Games, crafts, entertainment & Churchill Charlie appearance. Special activity will be plant-potting with Churchill Downs’ Director of Horticulture Matt Bizzell (three sessions at 1 p.m., 1:30 p.m. & 2 p.m.).Guests will be shown how to properly plant a Hyacinth Bean Vine seed and can decorate their clay pots.

Monday, June 3

  • No live racing or simulcast wagering

Tuesday, June 4

  • No live racing or simulcast wagering

Wednesday, June 5

  • No live racing
  • Simulcast wagering in ITW area on second floor of the Clubhouse from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Belmont Park (1:05 p.m.), Delaware Park (1:15 p.m.) & Arlington Park (2 p.m.)
  • Free General Admission

Thursday, June 6

  • 9 races from 12:45-4:59 p.m. EDT (Gates: 11:30 a.m.)
  • Feature (Race 6 at 3:25 p.m.): $54,000 alw, f & m, 1 1/16 M
  • Co-Feature (Race 9 at 4:59 p.m.): $54,000 alw, 3 & up, 5 F (T)
  • Simulcast wagering in ITW area on second floor of the Clubhouse from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.: Calder (12:50 p.m.), Belmont Park (1:05 p.m.), Delaware Park (1:15 p.m.), Louisiana Downs (2:25 p.m.), Golden Gate (3:45 p.m.), Betfair Hollywood Park (4 p.m.), Penn National (6 p.m.), Evangeline Downs (6:40 p.m.), Charles Town (7:15 p.m.), Prairie Meadows (7:30 p.m.) & Lone Star Park (7:35 p.m.)

Friday, June 7

  • 11 races from 2:45-7:54 p.m. (Gates 1:30 p.m.)
  • Feature: $60,000 alw, f & m, 5 F (T)
  • City’s Best Happy Hour! Drink specials ($2 Budweiser/Bud Light; $3 Stella Artois; $4 14 Hands Blackberry Sangria), food trucks (Black Rock Grille, Eats and Beats, Booty’s Diner, & Louisville Dessert Truck) & live music (Rachel Timberlake Band) in The Plaza from 4-7 p.m.
  • Advance Belmont Stakes wagering
  • Brooklyn/Belmont Double (Bel 10 at 5:49 p.m.)
  • 21st annual YMCA Safe Place Services Turf Classic (a seven-furlong race featuring Louisville firefighters on the Matt Winn Turf Course between races)
  • Simulcast wagering in ITW area on second floor of the Clubhouse from 11:30 a.m. to 9:45 p.m.: Calder (12:50 p.m.), Monmouth Park (12:55 p.m.), Woodbine (1 p.m.), Belmont Park (1:05 p.m.), Pimlico (1:10 p.m.), Louisiana Downs (2:25 p.m.), Golden Gate (3:45 p.m.), Arlington (4 p.m.), Betfair Hollywood Park (4 p.m.), Penn National (6 p.m.), Evangeline Downs (6:40 p.m.), Mountaineer (7 p.m.), Charles Town (7:15 p.m.), Prairie Meadows (7:30 p.m.) & Lone Star Park (7:35 p.m.)
  • TV: Belmont Classics, NBC Sports Network, 4-5 p.m.
  • TV: Live From Belmont Park, NBC Sports Network, 5-6 p.m.

Saturday, June 8

  • 11 races from 12:45-6 p.m. (Gates: 11:30 a.m.)
  • Feature: $100,000-added Early Times Mint Julep Handicap (GIII), f & m, 1 1/16 M (T)
  • Belmont Stakes Simulcast (Bel 11 at TBD)
  • Belmont $1 million All Graded Stakes Pick 6 (Bel 6-11 at TBD)
  • Belmont $1 million All Graded Stakes Pick 4 (Bel 8-11 at TBD)
  • TV: Belmont Saturday, NBC Sports Network, 3-5 p.m.
  • TV: Belmont Stakes, NBC, 5-7 p.m.
  • TV: Belmont Post-Race Show, NBC Sports Network, 7-7:30 p.m.
  • Simulcast wagering in ITW area on second floor of the Clubhouse from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.: Belmont Park (11:35 a.m.), Calder (12:50 p.m.), Monmouth Park (12:55 p.m.), Woodbine (1 p.m.), Pimlico (1:10 p.m.), Delaware (1:15 p.m.), Arlington (2 p.m.), Betfair Hollywood Park (2 p.m.), Louisiana Downs (2:25 p.m.), Lone Star Park (2:35 p.m.), Golden Gate (2:45 p.m.), Penn National (6 p.m.), Prairie Meadows (6 p.m.), Evangeline Downs (6:40 p.m.), Mountaineer (7 p.m.) & Charles Town (7:15 p.m.)

Sunday, June 9

  • 10 races from 12:45-5:29 p.m. (Gates: 11:30 a.m.)
  • Feature: $54000 alw opt clm, f & m, 1 1/16 M (T)
  • Family Fun Days Presented by Kroger on The Plaza Balcony from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s a birthday celebration for Churchill Downs popular mascot Churchill Charlie with special appearances from his area mascot friends. “The Churchill Charlie Birthday Bash Dash Presented by Kroger” – a race on the track for the mascots – will be run between races. Also, there will be games, crafts, entertainment and a special appearance by The Bubble Truck!
  • Secrets of Louisville Chefs Live at Churchill Downs. Join hosts Tim Laird and Kevin Harned as they kick off grilling season with a special episode taping in the Plaza at 2 p.m. Churchill Downs chef Dave Danielson will reveal grilling secrets that you can use at home and Tim Laird will show off the latest grilling gadgets. The episode will air on the weekend of July 4 on ION-21 and WAVE-3.
  • Simulcast wagering in ITW area on second floor of the Clubhouse from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.: Calder (12:50 p.m.), Monmouth Park (12:55 p.m.), Woodbine (1 p.m.), Arlington (2 p.m.), Louisiana Downs (2:25 p.m.), Lone Star Park (2:35 p.m.), Golden Gate (3:45 p.m.), Betfair Hollywood Park (4 p.m.) & Mountaineer (7 p.m.)

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