TRAINER MATT WHITEKILLER MOVES INTO FIRST ALL-TIME FOR PAINT WINS AS LIVE MOONSHINE TAKES MISTER LEWIE MEMORIAL
Live Moonshine put his trainer in the lead for all-time Paint wins when the 5-year-old gelding won the Grade 1, $31,000 Mister Lewie Memorial on Friday night at Remington Park.
He also gave Matt Whitekiller the lead for most wins in the Mister Lewie, named for the man many consider the greatest Paint trainer of all time, Lewis Wartchow. Whitekiller has won three times in this stakes event, including scores in 2017 & 2018 with Painted Turnpike, the all-time leading earning in Paint racing.
When told he had passed Dee Keener in wins with 331 to 330, Whitekiller threw some praise at his former mentor, Wartchow.
“I don’t pay any attention to that crap; there’s still only one Lewie,” said Whitekiller.
Keener still leads by a sizable margin in money earned for Paints, coming into the night with $5.2 million in winnings while Whitekiller had $4.5 million. He trailed Keener by one before winning the first race of the night with Shez Risky Business and then with Live Moonshine in the feature. Jockey Cody Smith rode both winners for him.
“He gave me all you could ask for,” Smith said of Live Moonshine. “We got away great in the 1-hole and it couldn’t have gone any better from there.”
Owners Dan and Kaye Jones of Kemp, Texas, said this victory was special for a reason.
“He was the last foal we delivered at home,” said Kaye. “We got out of that end of it after that. So he is really special. He never disappoints.”
Whitekiller’s Southern Electric got up for second as the favorite in the race after beating Live Moonshine in the Paul Harber Stakes on April 9 here at 350 yards. Friday night’s Mister Lewie was at 400 yards, the preferred distance of Live Moonshine. He has now won four of six starts going this distance.
“Being an older horse, Live Moonshine probably needed a race (coming off a November to April layoff),” said Whitekiller. “He is definitely the fastest of these two.”
There was a disqualification in the race when the No. 8 horse, Snow Advisory, broke inward from the gate and the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission stewards determined that she bumped into the runner-up Southern Electric, the No. 7, pushing him into the No. 6 horse, MH Famous Moonshine who then took a bad step, stumbling badly and tossing his jockey, Jimmy Brooks, over the top. Brooks lay on the track for a minute, collecting himself, but finally got up and walked off of his own accord. Snow Advisory was disqualified from fourth place and put in last place.
Live Moonshine, at 5-2 odds, paid $7.20 to win, $3.40 to place and $2.40 to show, finishing three-quarters of a length ahead of his stablemate. Southern Electric was another three-quarters of a length ahead of third-place Break Away James. Running time for the winner was :19.876 over a fast track for the 400 yards. Live Moonshine now has won 13-of-23 starts lifetime and this win put him over the $200,000 money earned mark. He also is 7-of-13 at Remington Park. This also was his seventh stakes win in his last 10 starts.
Live Moonshine earned $17,784 for the victory to make his lifetime bankroll $210,173.
This was the third win in the Mister Lewie for Smith, who was up for the Painted Turnpike wins with Whitekiller. It is the first win in the race for the owners.
Live racing continues Saturday, May 15, with a special first race at Noon on what is Preakness simulcast day. Sunday, May 16 racing begins at 6pm. All times are Central.
Tracked by more than 167,000 fans on Facebook and 10,400 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $261 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 to the $1.2 million Heritage Place Futurity on the Night of Champions, Saturday, May 29, the final evening of the American Quarter Horse, Paint and Appaloosa Season. The casino is always open. Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.