Agrivating General Wins the $30,000 Magnolia Stakes at SHRP

(December 14, 2002)- Agrivating General, a homebred owned by Lonnie O. Bates, of Tyler, Texas, showed his versatility this evening, winning the first route race of his young career, the $30,000 Magnolia Stakes.

Trained by Danny Pish, Agrivating General was making just his fourth lifetime start. He broke his maiden at the distance of six furlongs last June at Lone Star Park, and has finished first or second in each of his races. Pish had high regard for the Texas-bred son of Vermont and felt that he could handle stretching out to two turns. Sam Houston Race Park leading rider Terry Stanton took him off the pace, allowing him to settle as he completed the first quarter in :23.14 and the half mile in 46.45. Stanton called on him at the top of the stretch and the 3-year-old chestnut colt responded, holding off Kentucky import Doc D.

"He’s a nice horse," said Stanton. "He dug in; he was tired. I didn’t know how much I could get out of him, but he gave me everything he had, plus some. This is the first time I’ve been healthy in four years, but thanks to Danny and some other trainers, they’re putting me on nice horses and that’s what it takes to be on top."

"I was very pleased with his race tonight," said Pish. "I think the key to the win was in his first few strides. He left the gate sharp; Terry asked him to settle and he did settle, almost too much. He took himself well off the pace, but when it came time to run, as Terry said, he gave it his all. He ran a big race; he did it all and deserves the credit."

"It’s a big thrill for us," commented owner and breeder Bates. "When you have a trainer like Danny and a jockey like Terry, and the horse; we just sat back and enjoyed the win."

Doc D, owned and bred by John W. Rooker of Kentucky, shipped in following a win in a $43,000 allowance race at Churchill Downs on November 24. Trained by Eric Reed and ridden tonight by Marlon St. Julien, Doc D was closing well, but could not catch the winner.
"I think he ran very well," said St. Julien. "This is the first time to run under the lights for him. I personally feel that I still was on the best horse even though I got beat at the wire. I was sitting on a lot of horse and the #3 horse just surprised me. [Trainer] Eric Reed did a nice job. We just need to come and close next time."

Completing the trifecta was the Heiligbrodt Racing Stable’s Faxamillion. Trained by Steve Asmussen, the chestnut colt ran third in the $100,000 Star of Texas Stakes on Texas Champions Day. Glen Murphy was in the irons tonight.

"I had a smooth trip," maintained Murphy. "The inside opened up for me and we got through. Those other two were just running away from us".
Agrivating General completed the one-mile and 70 yard distance in a time of 1:41.56 and returned $7.40 to win, $5.20 to place and $3.60 to show, as the second betting choice. The 3-5 exacta paid $33.40 and the 3-5-4 trifecta returned $99.20. Completing the order of finish were No Net Needed, King Zonic, Dazzlinpersonality, Soldier Lake and Classoffiftyseven. Revered Soldier was an early scratch.

Bates indicated that he would confer with Pish about the next stakes for the promising Agrivating General.

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