photo by Jeff Coady/Coady Photo
|Gone Celebrating Tops the Field
in the $60,500 Sam Houston Classic at SHRP
August 29, 2003) - Trainer John Buchanan continued to dominate
tonight at Sam Houston Race Park as Gone Celebrating captured tonight’s
feature, the $60,500 Sam Houston Classic (G2). This was the third
consecutive stakes win for the 4-year-old son of Meter Me Gone,
who captured the Texas Hall of Fame Stakes at Retama Park and the
$45,000 Classic Chevrolet Stakes (G3) on July 25 at Sam Houston
Gone Celebrating was ridden to victory tonight by Juan Vazquez
for owner Bobby Cox of Fort Worth. They nosed out Zookie Street
and Dashing Obsession at the wire, completing the 440-yard stakes
in a time of :21.827.
"I don’t know what to say about him except that he’s
a really good horse and he’s gotten really good this year,"
said Buchanan. "These are some of the best horses you’re
going to get in the United States."
"I thought the 10 horse was going to beat me," said
Vazquez. "He broke a little late and he's never broke like
that before. I thought, 'uh oh, I'm in trouble'. He has a lot of
heart. This is a nice horse. It really helps a lot when you have
such a nice horse."
Zookie Street , winner of the $82,080 MBNA Texas Challenge Championship
(G1) on July 12, ran second for trainer Heath Taylor and rider Gilbert
"He was more nervous tonight than last time," commented
Ortiz. "I don’t know what it was but he was wound up
and didn’t relax. Still, he got away good and ran hard, but
you can’t spot horses like this any advantage and win."
Buchanan will have little time to celebrate as he has several contenders
in next Saturday’s Sam Houston Futurity and Sam Houston Derby.
"We like our chances," said Buchanan. "Ima Perry
Girl is doing really good; we think she has a really good chance
in the Futurity and in the Derby, we have Prime Talent and Snow
Warning are doing great and we think they’ll run well."
Gone Celebrating, sent off at 4-1, paid $10.20, $3.80 and $3.40
across the board. The 6-10 exacta returned $30.00 and the trifecta
with Dashing Obsesssion, one of the two Richard Smith-trainees,
paid $131.40. Completing the order of finish were Flying Avalanche,
Silent Overdrive, Special Hippity Hop, Mr Mallard, Turfinator, Shaky
Embrujo and Randys Pop Pop completed the order of finish.