NEW HORSE IN TRAINER DEE KEENER’S BARN, RP RECKLESS WIRE, PICKS UP STAKES WIN IN $24,300 PAUL HARBER MEMORIAL
Believe it or not, Paint racing’s all-time winningest trainer Dee Keener had never won the Paul Harber Memorial, but he did it Friday night finally with a new horse in the barn, RP Reckless Wire.
It was one of five wins on the night for Keener, who also won three of four Paint trials for the American Paint Classic finals on Saturday, April 29. He also went to the winner’s circle one more time with Tres Crystals in allowance company, an American Quarter Horse that won the biggest race of the meet last year – the $1.1 million Heritage Place Futurity.
The five victories put Keener in pretty heady company. The trainer Keener passed on his way to the top of the Paint racing world, Lewis Wartchow, once won six races in one day at Remington Park for a record. Wartchow was known as the “King of Paints,” right up to his passing in 2003.
“Hey, anytime I can get my name in there with that gentleman, it’s a good thing,” said Keener. “I needed this (winning five). I haven’t had a great meet.”
RP Reckless Wire upset heavy 7-5 favorite Queen for Cash in the Paul Harber Memorial to give Keener his first win in the Paint and Appaloosa stakes race and it was a case of what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Last year when the two horses faced off in the Mister Lewie Memorial Stakes on May 14, 2022, it was Queen for Cash who pulled off the upset, winning at 32-1 odds and RP Reckless Wire was 3-1, one of the favorites. RP Reckless Wire didn’t get out of the gate well in last year’s Mister Lewie, watching Queen for Cash win as she ran ninth, beaten nearly three lengths. She returned the favor Friday night at Remington, winning while Queen for Cash, an Appaloosa, could do no better than fourth.
Owner Jeff Adams, who raises and sells dogs in Durant, Okla., according to Keener, has the farthest thing from a dog in his new purchase, RP Reckless Wire, whom he picked up in December. She had raced for trainer Ray Enlow last year. After sending her to the breeding farm to extract some embryos from her, Keener brought her back to the track for workouts in March. Long story short, he now has a winner in the Paul Harber.
“I didn’t even know I’d never won this stakes until my wife (Wendy) told me she heard Dale Day say it on the microphone,” he said. “In this business, though, you don’t always hang on to the older horses to race.”
The Paul Harber is a race for 3-year-olds and older who are Paints or Appaloosas, racing 350 yards.
“This was the first time I’d ever run her,” Keener said of RP Reckless Wire. “She has really blossomed and has been acting so good.”
He used four different jockeys to get his four wins Friday. It was Cody Wainscott who guided RP Reckless Wire to the front from the 1-post position and held on all the way to the wire for the victory in :17.871 for a speed index of 83. She won by a full length over Lajolla Turnpike (11-1), who was another neck in front of third-place finisher Paint Em a Vision (53-1). Queen for Cash was another neck back in fourth.
RP Reckless Wire earned $14,784 for Adams from the $24,300 purse and she improved her career record to 19 starts, seven wins, five seconds and five thirds for earnings of $150,774. She was sent off as the 2-1 second favorite in the race and paid $6 to win, $3.60 to place and $3.40 to show.
The Paul Harber Memorial is named after a founding member of the American Paint Horse Association. Harber, a native of Seminole, Okla., helped guide the organization for over four decades.
Remington Park racing continues Saturday and Sunday, April 15 & 16. The first race Saturday is 6pm with Sunday racing at 4pm. All times are Central.
Tracked by more than 174,000 fans on Facebook and 10,700 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $317 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 features the 2023 American Quarter Horse, Paint and Appaloosa season through June 3. Remington Park presents simulcast racing daily and non-stop casino gaming. Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.