March 27, 2011

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Jennifer Hoyt, Media Relations Manager, 501-623-4411 ex. 497


HOT SPRINGS, AR (Sunday, March 27, 2011) – After several stakes placings, Baccari Racing Stable’s  Cosmo Girl finally became a stakes winner with a front-running victory in Sunday’s $75,000 Carousel Stakes at Oaklawn Park.

Running over a track officially listed as wet fast after a passing storm dumped heavy rain prior to the eighth race, Cosmo Girl quickly grabbed the lead and was never challenged through opening fractions of the :21 4/5 and :45 3/5 for the first half mile. She continued to open up her margin through the stretch, drawing off to win by 2¾ lengths over Gleaming. Final time for the six furlong race was 1:10 3/5.

“I was a little worried with the storm because I thought the track was ideal for her before then,” said trainer Joe Petalino, who also saddled Honey Bunch to a sixth-place finish. “Then we get all the water on it and having to go from the one-hole, but everything worked out OK after all. I didn’t talk to (jockey) Calvin (Borel) about the other filly (Honey Bunch). It looks like she didn’t like the track.”

Denali Glitter, the longest shot on the board at 38-1, held on for third, finishing three-quarters of a length in front of 2-1 favorite Simplify. Chandlers Heart, Honey Bunch and Superior Storm completed the order of finish.

Cosmo Girl, a 4-year-old City Zip filly who earlier in meet finished second in the Spring Fever Stakes, improved her record to 4-4-1 in 17 career starts and has now earned $133,811. She returned $13.00, $7.00 and $4.60.

One race later, Robert and Lawana Low’s regally bred filly Arienza stamped herself a serious contender for the April 10 $300,000 Fantasy Stakes (G2) with an impressive front-running victory in a one mile allowance race. The daughter of 2002 Horse of the Year and three-time Apple Blossom (G1) winner Azeri and Giant’s Causeway, remained undefeated after two career starts, winning Sunday by 2½ lengths over Hidatsa.

The filly had been the favorite for Saturday’s six-furlong Prima Donna Stakes, but scratched in favor of today’s two-turn race.

As the heavy 1-2 choice, she returned $3.00, $2.20 and $2.10.  Her winning time for the one-mile race over the wet fast track was 1:38.

“Early on she wasn’t as relaxed as I would have liked,” said trainer Danny Peitz. “I’m glad that (Jockey Gabriel Saez) took her to the front. I’d have been more concerned if he’d have had her inside with a couple horses surrounding her. I wish I could have seen the fractions because it looked like she was clicking along pretty good. I was glad to see that.

“I told (Saez) that if she runs like I hope she does to try and save a little in the tank in case we want to come back in two weeks. He didn’t have to hit her and it looks like he tried to do that – to leave something in the tank.”

Winning jockey Gabriel Saez arrived only a short time before the race after riding at Turfway Park in Kentucky Saturday because of mechanical problems with a connecting flight.

“She broke neatly and I just tried to keep her nice and relaxed the whole way,” said Saez. “I never had to ask her at all. Maybe a little bit turning for home, but I was just really confident. She acts like a nice filly. I just thank God I was able to get here to ride her.”

The storm that rolled through Hot Springs just as the seventh race was underway included several lightning strikes that knocked out power to the toteboard. The electrical problems disrupted wagering for a short time leading up to the eighth race and forced track officials to hand-time the final three races on the program.