IMA SKYWALKER WINS SECOND RACE IN THREE LIFETIME TRIES, TAKING FEATURE ALLOWANCE RACE
Ima Skywalker won for the second time in only three starts lifetime on Thursday night at Remington Park, keeping the barn of rookie trainer Jesse Oberlander red hot this meet.
Oberlander took over for his father, longtime conditioner Randy Oberlander, this season as the elder trainer retired. Jesse says Randy is busy taking care of grandkids and loving it. Jesse has made him proud, however, winning nine times with only 34 starters for a 24 win percentage. Only one trainer in the top 12 has a higher percentage – Kari Craddock at 28 percent. Leading trainer Steve Asmussen comes in with a 21 percent victory mark.
Oberlander also has won two stakes this meet with Run Slewpy Run – the $130,000 Oklahoma Classics Distaff Turf and the $70,000 Bob Barry Memorial.
How does Dad feel about son Jesse’s success?
“He’s a man of few words,” Jesse said with a laugh.
On Thursday night, Ima Skywalker added to the list of horses with more than one win on the season for Oberlander. Jockey Jose Alvarez guided the 3-year-old daughter of Euroears down in fourth for the first half of the mile race on the main track and she took the lead at the top of the stretch before winning by a full length at the wire. She is a homebred out of the Commendable mare Shmi Skywalker for owner Willow Ridge Farms (Domer Scaramucci) of Moore, Okla.
The win was hard earned as Ima Skywalker had to cut into slow early fractions of the race. Front-runners Taylor’s Vision and River Liberty controlled the pace up front in :24.81 seconds for the first quarter-mile, :49.44 for the half-mile and 1:14.46 for three-quarters. Ima Skywalker had taken over by the time 7 furlongs were covered in 1:27.25. The winning time for the mile was 1:40.90 over a fast track.
Ima Skywalker earned $24,072 from the $41,650 allowance purse for Oklahoma-bred fillies and mares that were 3-year-olds and older. She improved her record to two wins from three attempts and nearly doubled her career earnings to $49,512. Ima Skywalker went off at 9-1 odds to pay back a healthy $20.40 to win, $5.80 to place and $3.60 to show to her backers. The 4-5 wagering favorite, Long Gone Okie, ran second, a head in front of Magic Mindy (2-1).
Oberlander moved into a tie for 12th in the trainers’ standings this meet with those nine victories. He is tied with C.R. Trout, Mindy Willis, Boyd “Jobe” Caster and J.R. Caldwell. Every one of those trainers have nearly twice as many starters this meet than Oberlander.
Heroic Song Wins Again
Also on Thursday night, Heroic Song won his second time in a row this meet after being claimed by trainer Scott Young for owner Family Stone Racing (Leisha Gibson) of Edmond, Okla. The 3-year-old gelding is 2-for-2 with this crew and jockey Floyd Wethey, Jr.
On Sept. 11 at Remington Park, Heroic Song ran sixth, beaten 12-1/2 lengths out of the barn of trainer Andy Gladd. The son of Maclean’s Music, out of the Maria’s Mon mare I’m Not Afraid, was claimed for $7,500 and is unbeaten since. He won against $7,500 claimers that had not won two races lifetime on Oct. 13 when Young turned him back from 1 mile, 70 yards to 6-1/2 furlongs on a track listed as “good.” He won Wednesday night in a $15,000 claiming non-winners of three race at 6-1/2 furlongs over a fast track. Heroic Song won by 3-1/4 lengths at 7-1 odds. The 4-5 favorite, Flatout Winner was second, a half-length in front Remember Me Tony (8-5).
Remington Park racing continues Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12-13, with nine-race programs underway nightly at 7:07pm-Central.
Tracked by more than 167,000 fans on Facebook and 10,500 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $278 Million to the State of Oklahoma general education fund since the opening of the casino in 2005. Located at the junction of Interstates 35 & 44, in the heart of the Oklahoma City Adventure District, Remington Park is home for the $400,000 Springboard Mile on Friday, Dec. 17. Simulcast horse racing featured daily, the casino is always open! Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.