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Spicer Cub A Solid Second In Saturday Opener
BALTIMORE, 05-25-13---Spicer Cub, who became a YouTube sensation when his behavior in a maiden race at Pimlico Race Course last month went viral, ran without incident in Saturday’s opener, a $40,000 maiden special weight at 1 1/16 miles.
The Mary Eppler trainee sprinted to the lead with jockey Xavier Perez and led the race at the half-mile pole before giving way in midstretch to 1-2 favorite Tru Greek and finished 5 ¼ lengths behind the winner. Spicer Cub, the 5-2 second choice, paid $2.40 to place and $2.10 to show. The winner stopped the clock in 1:48.36 and won for the first time in his 12th career start.
Here’s a replay of the race http://youtu.be/linLPwQ2WBY.
“I had trouble sleeping last night,” Eppler said. “I am relieved, very relieved. I told X Man (Perez’s nickname) that if he did do anything crazy to pull up. I wanted to make sure everybody was safe.”
In his last race on April 13, Spicer Cub took an early lead but bolted midway on the far turn before Perez was able to straighten the son of Louis Quatorze at the head of the stretch. The 4-year old gelding regained the lead at the top of the stretch but bolted again, causing Perez to lose his irons inside the three-sixteenths pole. The duo then raced between the parked starting gate and the outside rail in midstretch and closed determinedly under strong urging to just miss winning, losing by a nose to Turbin. The race replay (http://youtu.be/FbH3N5VJzBE) has been viewed more than 116,000 times on YouTube, more than any other race on the Maryland Racing page.
“It was a solid effort,” Perez said. “I was very happy there was a horse outside of me around the far turn because he did look around at the same spot. I can take a big exhale and get on with the rest of the afternoon.”
The starting gate crew took extra precaution this afternoon by moving the gate all the way up the stretch past the finish line after the horses broke from the gate.
About Pimlico Race Course
Historic Pimlico Race Course, home of the Preakness® Stakes, the middle jewel in horse racing's famed Triple Crown, first opened its doors on October 25, 1870, and is the second oldest racetrack in the United States. Pimlico has played host to racing icons and Baltimoreans have seen the likes of legendary horses such as Man o’ War, Seabiscuit, Secretariat, Affirmed and Cigar thunder down the stretch in thrilling and memorable competition. For more information on Pimlico, visit www.pimlico.com.
Pimlico Race Course is a Stronach Group company, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack owner/operator. The Stronach Group racetracks include Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park & Casino, Golden Gate Fields, Portland Meadows, Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, home of the world-famous Preakness. The company owns and operates the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida and is one of North America's top race horse breeders through its award-winning Adena Springs operation. The Stronach Group is one of the world's largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services. Its companies include AmTote, a global leader in wagering technology; Xpressbet, an Internet and telephone account wagering service; and Monarch Content Management, which acts as a simulcast purchase and sales agent of horseracing content for numerous North American racetracks and wagering outlets. The Stronach Group is also a major producer of televised horse racing programming through its HRTV cable and satellite network and is North America's premier supplier of virtual online horse racing games, as well as a leading producer of social media content for the horseracing industry.