Castles in the Sky Favored for Saturday's $40,000 Nevill/Kyocera Stakes at Lone Star

(June 1, 2006) - The Donnie K. Von Hemel-trained Castles in the Sky, winner of a $27,000 allowance race at Lone Star Park last month, is the 5-2 morning line favorite for Saturday's $40,000 Nevill/Kyocera Stakes. Jockey Quincy Hamilton will be aboard the 3-year-old for the six-furlong race.

The second running of the race is restricted to 3-year-olds who haven't won a stakes race this year. A field of eight was entered, including Don't Tell Mommy who ran second in a $27,000 allowance race in May for leading trainer Steve Asmussen.

Castles in the Sky, a son of 1992 Champion Turf Horse Sky Classic, has placed in two of his three races in 2006. He is climbing up the ladder at Lone Star as he has successfully gone from the ranks of optional claimer to allowance horse and is now trying his hand at stakes races.

Here's the complete field from the rail out (with jockeys, trainers, and morning line odds): Almost Certain (Omar Rodriguez, Bart Evans, 8-1), Don't Tell Mommy (Glen Murphy, Steve Asmussen, 7-2), Castles in the Sky (Quincy Hamilton, Donnie K. Von Hemel, 5-2), Southern Humour (Don Pettinger, Cheryl Asmussen, 6-1), Guacamole (Casey Lambert, Danny Pish, 20-1), Stalwarthy (Justin Sheperd, Steve Asmussen, 4-1), Corredor de Plata (Cliff Berry, Cody Autrey, 6-1) and Katelyn's Pride (Jorge Guzman, Martin Lozano, 8-1).

The Nevill/Kyoocera Stakes will be run as the 10th race at 5:47 p.m. CT on an 11-race program. The first live race is at 1:35 p.m. CT.

Berry, Hamilton in Heated Battle for Leading Rider

Last year's defending Lone Star Park riding champ Cliff Berry finds himself in a heated competition with 22-year-old Quincy Hamilton to be Lone Star's leading jockey this season. Berry, who has been riding for 26 years, had 47 wins in the first seven weeks of Lone Star's 15-week meeting. Hamilton, in his fourth year of riding, is only one win behind Berry with 46 victories. Rounding out the rest of the meet's top five jockeys are Jamie Theriot (31 wins), Justin Shepherd (22) and Glen Murphy (19).

Steve Asmussen, Lone Star's leading trainer for seven of the last eight meetings, once again topped the list for the first seven weeks. Asmussen, with 35 wins, had an eight-win lead over Bret Calhoun and Cody Autrey, who had 27 wins apiece. Over the last two weeks Calhoun notched 10 wins to tie Autrey for second. Danny Pish was third with 17 trips to the winner's circle. Donnie K. Von Hemel rounded out the top five with 13 wins.

In the race to be leading owner, there's a logjam among the leaders. Sandy and Jerry Heflin led all owners with seven victories. There's a four-way tie for second between Tom Durant, Wimp Free Racing Stables, Pin Oak Stable and Heiligbrodt Racing Stable - all with six winners each. Not far off their heels with five wins are Carl Moore Management LLC and Charles Fletcher.

As for the horses, Sweepingly, Peerless Tee and Silver Thunder were the only three-time winners at the meet over the first 34 days of racing.

Early Deadline For Nat'l Handicapping Championship Tourney Is Friday

The early deadline to enter Lone Star Park's two-day qualifying tournament for the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship is Friday at midnight. The local handicapping contest will feature $10,000 in prize money on Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18, and the top three finishers will be off to Las Vegas to compete in the national finals in January.

The early entry fee is $150 per person -- $100 for "Star Player Rewards" members - but it jumps to $250 ($150 for "Star Player Rewards" members on Saturday and through the final deadline on June 16. To participate, contact Kristen Foster at (972) 237-1134 or

DOWN THE STRETCH - Friday night's featured $36,000 allowance race (Race 9 at 10:19 p.m. CT) is a competitive field of nine older horses going one mile on turf. Stakes winners A R Crackers and Goosey Moose are expected to battle for favoritism, along with Cajole, a winner in two of his last three starts. Also entered are Twilight Vision, Nobodywantmetilnow, Runaway Choice, Trial By Jury, Andanight and Rare Cure...Friday's "Party at the Park" will feature live music from Cuvee and $1.75 Bud Lights in the Courtyard of Champions from 7-11 p.m...Professor D will perform between lives races for this week's Budweiser "True Music" Saturday from 12-4 p.m...Sunday is Senior Citizen's Day at Lone Star with free admission for patrons 62 and up with proof of identification...Reminder: "Lone Star Park Tonight," a half-hour replay of Lone Star's daily racing, airs on HRTV (Channel 404 on Dish Network) the following morning at 10:30 a.m. CT...HRTV also will broadcast "Lone Star Park This Week" on Saturdays at 11 a.m. CT. The weekly magazine-style show airs Saturdays at 9 a.m. on KFWD-52 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area through June 10.

back to TTHBPA Infomation