|Candy Ball Remains Perfect on Turf
With Fresa Stakes Win at Lone Star
(July 15, 2006)
- Candy Ball remained perfect on the grass with a convincing two-length
victory over D Fine Okie in Saturday's $40,000 Fresa Stakes before
a crowd of 13,134 at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas. The
4-year-old Lemon Drop Kid filly collected her first stakes win and
fourth straight victory since switching to the turf in April.
Candy Ball, ridden by Jeffery Burningham and carrying 122 pounds,
ran 7 1/2 furlongs on turf in 1:40.96. She paid $9.60, $4.60 and
$3.40 to win as the 7-2 third betting choice. Mild 3-1 favorite
My Misty Princess was another 1 1/2 lengths behind D Fine Oke in
In the early stages of the race, Candy Ball was patiently positioned
in seventh in the field of 10 fillies and mares before staging a
four-wide rally on the final turn.
Overall, Candy Ball has won five of nine starts and $98,580 for
Louisiana-based trainer Andy Leggio Jr. and Tom and Sue Ball's Rancho
Fresa Inc. The Balls campaigned Fresa, the $427,633-earner for which
the race is named.
"Andy Leggio and his crew have done a really good job with
this filly and Jeffrey really rides her perfect," Tom Ball
said. "We bought her [for $12,000] at [the 2003] Keeneland
[September yearling sale] and she had a little scar on a knee. I
knew if I gave her time, it wouldn't bother her; it's never bothered
her. This filly, we didn't touch her until she was three and she's
really been good for us."
BERRY WINS FOUR; ON PACE TO BREAK SINGLE SEASON RECORD
Cliff Berry rode four winners at Lone Star Park on Saturday, bringing
his season total to 95. The 43-year-old veteran has a comfortable
20-win lead over Quincy Hamilton in pursuit of his second straight
Lone Star riding title.
Berry enters the final five days of the meeting just seven wins
shy of Corey Lanerie's 1999 single season record of 102 victories.
Lanerie set the mark during a 73-day meeting. This year's Spring
Thoroughbred Season is 66 dates and concludes Sunday, July 23.
This was the eighth time this season that Berry had won at least
four races on a program. He won five races on April 15 and June
Berry won Saturday's third race aboard Wild Momie ($11.40), the
fourth on Mancini Martini ($4.20), the sixth with Single Sox ($6.60)
and the seventh on Fur Elise ($16.60). The native of Joplin, Mo.
has four scheduled mounts Sunday, including three morning line favorites.
Fur Elise gave Cody Autrey his 49th victory this season and placed
him in a tie for second in the trainer standings with Bret Calhoun.
Both are trying to upend Steve Asmussen, who tops the horsemen with
55 victories but is currently serving a suspension that will force
him to miss the remainder of the season.
Fur Elise also padded the lead in the owner standings for Rockwall,
Texas residents Jerry and Sandy Heflin. It was the couple's 17th
trip to the Lone Star winner's circle - three more than four-time
local champ Tom Durant.
Also on Saturday, there was a meet-high 15-way shake for 4-year-old
filly Sleek Flyer, who raced with a $4,000 claiming tag. The three-time
winner at the meet finished fourth as a 6-5 favorite and now goes
to Arkansas-based owner/trainer Clay Loetscher.