STICKEY/CICERO--Eleven Illinois-bred two-year-old colts and geldings saw the starter in the Jim Edgar Futurity, but a late scratch of WICENTY reduced the field to ten. That defection did bother the three outside horses--FLATHEAD RIVER, STAR OF CLASS, and THINKING SHOWBIZ.
It didn't bother CHATFIELD ROAD, who broke alertly, got onto the lead, and held everyone else at bay in a wire-to-wire triumph. It didn't come easy; ULTIMO TRAGO stalked off CHATFIELD ROAD the entire way around and LASSELL was in close attendance. And the tempo was honest: :24.28, :49.32, and 1:15.43.
But in deep stretch as ULTIMO TRAGO was passed by nearly everyone, CHATFIELD ROAD continued on, despite a little bit of greenness. He held off the challenge of the two Carlos Silva trainees: LASSELL (who finished second) and SMOKIN GLOCK (the 5-2 post time favorite who finished fourth). TALL GRASS CAT closed from Cicero Avenue to collect a third place check.
At the tape, it was CHATFIELD ROAD who held off the pressing and closing LASSELL by a head. Two and a quarter lengths behind in third was TALL GRASS CAT.
CHATFIELD ROAD (right, no blinkers) stretches out and holds off LASSELL (left, with blinkers) to take the Jim Edgar Illinois Futurity. Photo courtesy Four Footed Fotos.
CHATFIELD ROAD, a two-year-old Illinois-bred by Bellamy Road, paid $25.60 to win. He was sent off at nearly 12-1 odds and covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:49.45. Seth Martinez piloted home the winner for trainer Tom Swearingen.
Up for sale in a $15,000 state-bred maiden claiming race last time, Swearingen mentioned how he was a "slow developer" and just "woke up" last time. Despite "being a slow developer and coming from a modest family of sprinters", Swearingen noted that he showed some promise in that six furlong sprint last time. That prompted the decision to stretch him out to victory to take on the 1-2-3-4 of the Sun Power (who finished 2-4-6-3).
Winning rider Seth Martinez echoed the decision to stretch out the state-bred, who will stay around for local races next yer. After the race Seth noted that "[trainer] Tom [Swearingen] gave him a couple of long works between that race and this one. The colt seemed to do great. He handled the two turns just fine. Tom told me to leave the gate on him and if he wanted to be up there, let him be up there."
The $2 2-3 exacta of CHATFIELD ROAD and LASSELL paid $150.20. The fifty-cent 2-3-4 trifecta of CHATFIELD ROAD, LASSELL, and TALL GRASS CAT yielded $210.20. Dime superfectas of 2-3-4-6 with SMOKIN GLOCK in the fourth position netted $126.08 for lucky punters.
Special thanks to Hawthorne Asst. GM Jim Miller for considerations.