O DONOVAN ROSSA PREVAILS IN PAULS VALLEY STAKES
O Donovan Rossa ran his seasonal Remington Park winning streak to two on Saturday, with a hard-fought victory in the Grade 2 Pauls Valley Stakes at 870 yards.
In mid-April, O Donovan Rossa crushed an allowance field around the turn, winning by 10-1/2 lengths. In the Pauls Valley, the competition level skyrocketed with the likes of multiple stakes winners and two-time defending American Quarter Horse Association Distance Champion Wascallywittlewabbit.
Under jockey Bryan Candanosa, O Donovan Rossa launched from his rail post position to grab an early daylight lead. However, Wascallywittlewabbit was not going to let O Donovan Rossa get away as he did in his April test, joining him on the front end as they entered the turn. The pair hooked up to duel until the top of the stretch, more than five lengths ahead of their nearest rivals.
Once straightened away for the run to the finish, O Donovan Rossa put Wascallywittlewabbit away but had little breathing room. Dak, winner of the AQHA Remington Distance Challenge earlier on April 2, was using his closing kick to hone in on the leader. At 150 yards left in the race, the pair were on even terms but Candanosa asked O Donovan Rossa for a little more and he responded, pulling away to win by a half-length in :45.079 over the fast track. The time was good for a speed index of 99.
O Donovan Rossa was the 4-5 wagering favorite in the Pauls Valley Stakes, paying $3.60 to win, $2.20 to place and #2.10 to show.
Dak was a clear second, 5-1/4 lengths ahead of Big Dynasty who rallied for third. The remaining order of finish was Wascallywittlewabbit (4th) then Bakers Big Ol Boy (5th).
O Donovan Rossa won his ninth career race from 29 attempts, to go with five seconds and three thirds. The 5-year-old gelding provided all of his connections with their first win in the Pauls Valley Stakes, named after the small town about out an hour south of Oklahoma City.
Owned by Kelly Yother Equine, LLC of Culver City, Calif., O Donovan Rossa is trained by Dee Keener. By Apollitical Jess from the Country Chicks Man broodmare Shanachee, O Donovan Rossa was bred in Oklahoma by J. Garvan Kelly.
The Pauls Valley purse was $54,800 with $34,800 going to O Donovan Rossa. The earnings boosted his lifetime bankroll to $219,483.
Remington Park racing continues Sunday with the first race at 4pm-Central.
Tracked by more than 175,000 fans on Facebook and 10,700 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $320 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.