Queena Corrina Wins $75,000 Irving Distaff at Lone Star

(April 16, 2005) - Six-year-old mare Queena Corrina, twice a stakes runner-up, kicked clear inside the final furlong of Saturday's $75,000 Irving Distaff at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas to collect her first career stakes win before an estimated crowd of 12,500.

Queena Corrina, trained by Donnie K. Von Hemel and ridden by Don Pettinger, ran 7 ½ furlongs on a firm turf course in 1:31.08 en route to defeating defending champ Janeian by 2 ½ lengths. My Misty Princess was another length back in third. Paz Ciudadana, the 2-1 favorite in the field of 10 fillies and mares, finished last after she attempted to jump the temporary rail inside the final eighth-mile.

"I had a lot of horse when I sat down on here at the top of the stretch," Pettinger said. "She really accelerated and they were going to have to really run to catch her today. She's gotten a lot more professional. She'll wait for you to call on her."

Owned and bred by Stan Wilson of Coffeeville, Kansas, Queen Corrina paid $11.80 to win as the 9-2 third betting choice. It was her eighth win in 24 starts and first start since suffering a narrow loss in the $100,000 Bluebonnet Stakes on closing day of the Fall Breeders' Cup Meeting on Oct. 31. The $45,000 winner's share of the purse boosted her career earnings to $199,170.

"Her full brothers are [2000 Remington Park Futurity winner and $351,032-earner] Rockchalk Jayhawk and [$444,118-earner] Toll Booth Willie, so I really wanted to get a mare that could win a stakes race," said Wilson, who owns five horses, including three that race (note: his 4-year-old gelding Daring Child also won Lone Star's 11th race). "I think she's going to do really well as a broodmare. But we've got some racing left with her."

A logical next step would be the Grade III, $200,000 WinStar Distaff, a one-mile turf test for fillies and mares on Lone Star Million Day, Memorial Day, May 30. She'll likely face Janeian again, who did get the best of trips, according to trainer Bret Calhoun.

"[Queena Corrina] just beat us to a hole," Calhoun said. "We had to wait a little more than we wanted. She beats us about as much as she beat us to the spot. The horse that beats us had a great position all the way around, and we had to wait a little longer than we wanted. If she comes along like she did up to this race, we go next in the WinStar Distaff. As long as her mind is straight, we'll keep running her."

Chilean-bred Paz Cidandana had an adventurous trip under jockey Corey Lanerie, who flew in from Kentucky for the mount when jockey Lonnie Meche was handed a 45-day suspension and $2,500 fine by Texas Racing Commission stewards for testing positive for an amphetamine on Thursday night.

"As soon as she got to [the temporary rail], she tried to go right through it," Lanerie said. "I also had trouble on the far turn. There wasn't room for a horse, I thought, between me and the rail, but someone came in there. Me, being the nice guy, I put myself in a bad spot. From then on it was just a struggle to get going. I finally found a little room, but she was no help when she tried to jump the temporary rail."

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