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September 6, 2005     E-mail this page to a friend!

(photo by Courtesy of Emerald Downs)
By Patrick J. Kerrison
AUBURN, WA – Alexandersrun made it two straight stakes victories with an at-the-wire win in the $100,000 Emerald Breeders’ Cup Derby on Labor Day at Emerald Downs.

The top stakes winning jockey this season, Ricky Frazier, rode the 3-year-old son of Sweetsouthernsaint out of the second post for trainer Tim McCanna.

“He came out on top of his game,” Frazier said. “Tim said go out there and let him break and see where they settle. They kicked it up pretty good and just let him drop back about 10 lengths. It was a lot of work to get him back running, but once I did he was right there.”

Alexandersrun chased leaders Datzig, Palanca and Cowboy Cruisser as they set early fractions of 22 3/5 and 46 seconds.

At the half-mile pole, the gelding was 10 lengths back when he started his move. By the time they hit the top of the stretch, Frazier had his charge in second by only a length and the pair were driving hard down the lane.

“Once he passes a couple of horses he got pretty aggressive,” Frazier said. “By the three-eights pole I was pretty sure he could win the race.”

Alexandersrun took the lead in the last sixteenth of a mile and finished less than a length in front of Norm’s Nephew and the second-choice in the wagering, Timeless Passion.

“We broke together and his (Frazier’s) horse come up on next to me,” Timeless Passion’s jockey Jake Barton said. “We kicked on, but those two (horses) just out finished me.”

The win was Frazier and McCanna’s first Derby victory at Emerald Downs.

“He seemed to sharpen up between races,” McCanna said of Alexandersrun. “I was a little worried down the backside. But he finished and Ricky is the man in these kind of races.”

Alexandersrun finished the race in 1:49 and paid $6, $3.40 and $3.
Norm’s Nephew finished $5.60 and $4 for second and Timeless Passion paid $3 for third.

Both the trainer and jockey are the respective leaders in stakes victories this season at Emerald Downs.  Frazier has accumulated nine stakes victories and McCanna has won seven.

McCanna is within one stakes victory of the season record of eight, currently held by trainers Steve Bullock and Bud Klokstad. With the Derby victory, McCanna takes over second place in total career stakes victories at Emerald Downs with 22.  Bud Klokstad leads with 38.

In the past two years, McCanna has entered 45 horses in stakes races and won at an incredible 28 percent.

Frazier entered the meet seventh on the all-time stakes wins list at Emerald Downs.  His nine stakes wins this season moves him into third place in all-time career stakes wins at the Auburn oval with 22.  Gallyn Mitchell leads all riders (47) and Washington Hall of Fame rider Gary Baze is second (26) for most stakes victories in a season.