At the races -- Trainer Jones buys into appeal of She's Appealing

February 10, 2008|By Larry Yanos

She's Appealing proved very appealing to Charles Town-based trainer Kelly Jones.

The 5-year-old mare, who enjoyed a brilliant campaign in 2007 -- winning 8 of 9 races -- was claimed from trainer Julio Cartagena following a race Dec. 23 at Charles Town Races & Slots and is set to make her 2008 debut in late February.

Jones claimed the talented Florida-bred in a $6,000 claiming race for 3-year-olds and up going a distance of 4 1/2 furlongs.

"I have a lot of respect for Julio and he sure knew what he was doing with that horse," the 29-year-old Jones said. "Following in his footsteps will be tough. I hope the success She's Appealing had in 2007 can continue."


Jones claimed the horse for owner David Haney.

"He's a super owner and really cares about horses," Jones said. "I think he was considering She's Appealing for breeding purposes if things don't work out on the racetrack. I've seen her run, she doesn't have any apparent problems."

From the looks of 2007, She's Appealing apparently enjoys competing on the racetrack -- not in the breeding barn.

She dominated sprint races at Charles Town last year and never was asked by Cartagena to run events in back-to-back weeks.

Jones said She's Appealing is getting a well-deserved rest now and should return to racing action soon.

"There's nothing suitable for her right now. I wanted to wait for the right spot," Jones said. "She'll definitely run 4 1/2 furlongs. It won't be a claiming race."

Jones, a relative newcomer to Charles Town, currently has 16 horses in training.

"I've been here for about 16 months," Jones said, "I was an assistant trainer and exercise rider for Bruce Jackson and I trained horses at Fair Hill (Md.) and in Florida. Actually, I got my trainer's license at Tampa Bay."

Jones says she's currently running her horses at Charles Town and Laurel Park.

"This is a great place to start as a young trainer," Jones said. "The racing is very competitive but the purses are good and I'm getting some opportunities."

Kentucky Future Wager

Charles Town will offer patrons an opportunity to wager on the Kentucky Derby Future Wager today.

The mutuel field, or "all others" wager, has been favored in the first of three pools of Churchill Downs' Derby Future Wager every year since the bet was first offered in 1999. The trend is expected to continue in 2008 as fans make their early bets on contenders for the 134th running of the Kentucky Derby.

Churchill Downs oddsmaker Mike Battaglia has installed the "all others" bet as the strong 5-2 favorite in his morning-line odds for Pool 1 of the Future Wager, which ends its four-day run today at racetracks and satellite wagering outlets across the United States and Canada.

Each Future Wager pool consists of 23 individual horses and a mutuel field, or "all others." There is a three-way tie for the second choice and favored individual horse in Pool 1's morning-line odds between War Pass, Pyro and Court Vision. All three are listed at 12-1.

The Future Wager is a minimum $2 wager and a win bet only. It offers fans the opportunity to bet on contenders at odds that could be greater than those they would receive on Derby Day.

While wagering on Pool 1 will end today at 6 p.m., Pool 2 is scheduled for March 6-9 and Pool 3 is set for April 3-6.

The 134th running of the $2 million Kentucky Derby, a 1 1/4-mile test for 3-year-old thoroughbreds, is scheduled for May 3.

Real-time odds on all three pools of the Future Wager are available on the official Kentucky Derby Web site at

Pony tales

· Charles Town-based jockey J.D. Acosta trails only Russell Baze for most trips to the winner's circle in 2008.

Through Feb. 7, the California-based Baze led the way in races won with 56 while Acosta followed with 48.

Baze went to the starting

gate 165 times and had 56 wins, 30 seconds and 29 thirds.

Acosta went to the starting

gate 192 times and had 48 wins, 34 seconds and 24 thirds.

· Three stakes races comprise the Presidents' Day weekend Winter SprintFest at Laurel Park.

Twenty-eight fillies and mares were nominated to the Grade II Barbara Fritchie Breeders' Cup Handicap. Twenty-seven nominations were accepted for the John B. Campbell Handicap and 27 horses were nominated for the Grade II General George Breeders' Cup Handicap.

The 7-furlong Fritchie and the 1-1/8 mile Campbell will be contested on Feb. 16. The 7-furlong General George is scheduled for Feb. 18.

· The dates for the 2008 Triple Crown Series: Kentucky Derby, May 3, Churchill Downs, Louisville, Ky.; Preakness Stakes, May 17, Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore; Belmont Stakes, June 7, Belmont Park, Elmont, N.Y.

Larry Yanos writes a weekly horse racing column for The Herald-Mail. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 2311, or by e-mail at

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