Four Stakes Set for Closing Night at Evangeline Downs
The 2016 Quarter Horse meet at Evangeline Downs in Opelousas, Louisiana, wraps up on Saturday, December 17 with a 12-race card, including four stakes.
The action gets underway at 5:35 pm (Central). Distance specialists will compete in the 870-yard $25,000 IP 870 Stakes, which will run as race eight. Stakes winners Jessa Little Rusty, Eyesa Shoofly Dandy will take on Zia Park shipper Executive Trust, with Ruby Gonzalez making the trip to Louisiana. Scoopies Leaving You will be gunning for his 16th career victory in the $20,000 Sams Town Stakes, to be run at 350-yards.
A field of ten will compete in the $158,780 Evangeline Downs Derby and the classy Ivan James deserves top billing in the 400-yard final. The Ivory James colt won the Sam Houston Futurity last year and was victorious five months ago in the Firecracker Derby at Delta Downs.
The marquee stakes of the evening is the $317,500 Evangeline Downs Futurity, which features the ten fastest qualifiers from trials run on November 28. Maxx set the fastest qualifying time for the Evangeline Downs Futurity while winning his trial by 1-1/4 lengths. The Pyc Paint Your Wagon gelding will be ridden by Manuel Gutierrez. Oklahoma-bred Eye N Capo is the highest money earner in the field and brings a perfect three-for-three record into the Evangeline Downs Futurity. His biggest score this year was a victory in the Dash For Cash Futurity at Lone Star Park on October 8.
The leading jockey and trainer title will be decided on Saturday night with David Alvarez and John Hamilton in a tight battle for leading rider and several trainers, including Trey Ellis, Orlando Orozco, Carlos Saldivar and Kenneth Weeks at the top of the standings in the final week.
For handicapping selections at Evangeline Downs visit the track’s website at www.evdracing.com.