MBNA America Challenge Championships - Ford Juvenile Notes for Tuesday, November 2

(Tuesday, November 2, 2004) - WRS Special Shoe earned a ticket to Sam Houston Race Park when he won the Ford Central Challenge (G3) in his second career start. Randy Williams, a tobacco farmer from La Center, Kentucky, races WRS Special Shoe under his Williams Racing Stables, and Charleton Hunt trains the 2-year-old.

After finishing fourth in the October 3 Kansas Futurity (G2), the gelded son of First Down Laveaux shipped to Texas. The loss was the first time that the gelding finished off the board after facing the starter nine times.

WRS began his race career in a trial for the Ford Central Challenge (G3). He ran second in his trial heat but came back in the June 5 final and won by a neck. The victory was the first in a streak that lasted six races and ended in the Kansas final.

In addition to winning the Ford Central Challenge (G3), the brown gelding also won the Iowa Double Gold Futurity (RG3) and Jim Bader Futurity (RG3).
His earnings stand at $103,400.

"I don't think that we could handle him if he was still a colt," Hunt says.
"He's not wild or mean, he's just real ornery. Sometimes he's hard to put up with."

Having raced in Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas, WRS Special Shoe will make his Texas debut on Saturday in the $150,000 Ford Juvenile Challenge Championship (G1).

Hunt says the gelding seems to be enjoying life in Houston. According to the trainer, the 2-year-old didn't like the track at The Woodlands in Kansas City. Hunt has given WRS Special Shoe plenty of time to adjust to the Houston track surface as the gelding has been sent to the track about five times since arriving. On Wednesday morning, WRS Special Shoe will go to the gates and stretch his legs over the Houston track in final preparation for the Ford Juvenile Challenge Championship.

This year's Challenge Championships will be telecast live on the TVG Network. The first Challenge race, the $75,000 Professional's Choice Challenge Championship, is scheduled for 9:18 p.m. (EST).

The draw for all six MBNA Challenge Championships stakes will take place on Wednesday, November 3.

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