Emerald Downs to present special Father's Day race
June 16, 2018 8:07 AM
by Robert Mann
Emerald Downs, in honor of Father's Day, is presenting one of the most unique races in thoroughbred history.
Sunday's sixth race, officially the “Not in Any Rocking Chair Starter Allowance”, is for 3-year-olds and up which have started for a claiming price of $3,500 or less in 2017-18 and whose trainer was born on or prior to June 6, 1928.
That means the race is only open to horses whose trainers are at least 90 years old, of which Emerald Downs, near Seattle, extraordinarily has several.
The horses in Sunday's race are conditioned by 94-year-old Arturo Arboleda, 91-year-old H.R. Pat Mullens, 90-year-old Ira Rhodes, and 90-year-old Bob Meeking. Meeking, a five-time winner this meet, celebrated his 90th on June 6, thus meeting the race conditions.
“We thought this would be a great way to honor these guys on Father's Day,” said Phil Ziegler, President of Emerald Downs Racetrack and Casino. “What other sport could a 90-year-old still be out knocking heads with the younger guys and gals?”
Fittingly, Meeking sends out Trelawny in Sunday's six-furlong race. Like his trainer, the 11-year-old gelding is still going strong at an advanced age, winning five races last year as a 10-year-old and once in three starts this year.
The field for the “Not in Any Rocking Chair Starter Allowance”: 1-Regazze Cat, Kevin Orozco riding, 120 lbs, Arturo Arboleda trainer; 2-Cats Gulch, Jose Zunino, 120, Arboleda; 3-Trelawny, Julien Couton, 124, Bob Meeking; 4-Some Storm Cat, Eswan Flores, 120, Ira Rhodes; 5-Ryan Walt, Rocco Bowen, 124, H.R. Mullens.