Gray Invasion Prevails by a nose in $30,000 B.F. Phillips Jr. 'Cap at Lone Star

(October 6, 2006) - Gray Invasion prevailed by a nose over Eyes Moving Easy and Ida Snow Man to narrowly win Saturday’s $30,000 B.F. Phillips Jr. Handicap. The thrilling victory came before a crowd of 4,101 at Lone Star Park on opening night of the 32-date Fall Meeting of Champions.

Gray Invasion, ridden by Rodrigo Vallejo and carrying 124 pounds, covered 400 yards in :19.980 and paid $12.20, $5.20 and $2.80 as the 5-1 fourth choice in the field of seven Texas-bred Quarter Horses. Eyes Moving Easy returned $4.80 and $2.80. Ida Snow Man was another nose back in third and paid $2.80. Sarahs Fast Man, the even-money favorite, finished willingly for fourth after breaking last from the gate.

The win was the 12th in 40 lifetime starts for Gray Invasion and was worth $18,300, raising the career earnings for the 7-year-old Chicks Beduino gelding to $255,017 for owner Claudio Aguilar and trainer Robert Touchet.

This was Gray Invasion’s sixth career stakes win and fifth graded stakes triumph.

Live racing continues Saturday at Lone Star with an 11-race program that begins at 6:35 p.m. CT. The program is topped by the Grade 1, $100,000 Refrigerator and $17,500 Red River handicaps. The 440-yard Refrigerator features top performers Country Chicks Man, This Snow Is Royal and La Jollaroid. Meanwhile, Run and Pray will attempt to win his third straight running of the 870-yard Red River.

Lone Star also will simulcast 13 graded stakes from around the country Saturday, including five Grade I events from Belmont Park and three graded stakes from both Keeneland and Oak Tree at Santa Anita. Lone Star’s Post Time Pavilion will open for simulcast wagering at 10:25 a.m. and there will be a free handicapping seminar with Gary West of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Lone Star Park’s Rick Lee from 10:30-11:30 a.m. A free $500 handicapping contest will take place, as well.

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