Pie N Burger Clinches Horse of the Meet With Bob Johnson Romp

(Sunday, July 13, 2003) - Pie N Burger clinched Horse of the Meeting honors by cruising to an easy win in Sunday’s $60,000 Bob Johnson Memorial Stakes, the closing day feature at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.

It was the 5-year-old gelding’s third win and second stakes score of the season. Pie N Burger also won the Grade III Lone Star Park Handicap and the allowance prep for that race.

“This horse, let me tell you, bottom line is he’s a runner,” said trainer Cole Norman, who took home an armload of trophies on the afternoon. “This is about as good as it gets.”

Norman earned Champion Trainer honors with a single-season record 98 wins. Horses trained by the 34-year-old also earned Champion Older Horse (Pie N Burger), Champion Older Female (Eagle Lake), Champion Texas-bred Female (Eagle Lake), Champion 3-Year-Old Female (Miss Bridget Jones) and Champion Sprinter (That Tat).

As the odds-on favorite in the Bob Johnson, Pie N Burger pressured early pacesetter Compendium through opening fractions of :23 3/5 and :45 4/5 in the one-mile contest. Those two were about four lengths clear of Golden Hare and Rare Cure, who were about another four lengths ahead of Guaranteed Sweep and Agrivating General. As the leaders rounded the second turn, Compendium began to falter and from then on it was just a matter of how much the son of Twining would win by.

“This is how he likes to run,” jockey Jamie Theriot said of the winner. “When I got outside of Compendium, he relaxed for me. When I called on him at the quarter pole he was full of run.”

Pie N Burger stopped the timer in 1:35.67, finishing 5 ½ lengths ahead of fast-closing Agrivating General, whose game effort helped clinch Champion Texas-bred Male honors for the 4-year-old gelding. Trained by Danny Pish for owner Lonnie Bates, hard-trying Agrivating General won the opening day Premiere Stakes and also finished second in the Assault Stakes.

Agrivating General was 3 ½ lengths ahead of Compendium, who dug in to save third. The order of finish was completed by Guaranteed Sweep, Golden Hare and Rare Cure.

Pie N Burger paid $3.20 for his many supporters. The $36,000 winner’s share of the purse raised the Kentucky-bred’s earnings to $547,933.

Tom Kagele, part of the Kagele Bros. Inc & James Bailey partnership that owns Pie N Burger, was thrilled with the victory.

“This has been great,” Kagele said. “This is the best time I’ve had in horseracing yet. It’s been unbelievable here at Lone Star and I’ll be back next year with more horses.”

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