Larry and Cindy Jones
, the husband-and-wife training
duo with their perennial herd of stakes horses, were partially in
residence once again on the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots
backstretch Wednesday morning.
Still in absentia was Larry, who is due in at the New Orleans oval
Thursday as Fair Grounds begins the second racing week of its 2012-2013
meeting, which runs through March 31.
“I got here a week ago Monday,” said Cindy, tongue-in-cheek,
Wednesday morning as she put some finishing touches on one of the stalls
in their barn. “I’ve been doing Larry’s work as well as my own up to
now, so it seems like the more things change the more they stay the
Always quick with a quip – as is her husband – the Joneses remain one
of the most likeable tandems in racing, and they have almost all of
their Fair Grounds stakes winners from last season with them once again.
“Believe You Can has been here for a little while now,” said Mrs. Jones, speaking of last spring’s Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks heroine who went on to victory in Churchill’s Grade I Kentucky Oaks,
becoming the fifth filly in the last eight renewals of the Fair Grounds
Oaks to parlay that victory into another in the Kentucky Oaks.
“Mark Valeski got down here a couple of days ago,” she added of last spring’s Grade II Louisiana Derby and Grade II Risen Star runner-up who went on to win the Grade II Dwyer at Belmont Park later in the season. “Today was the first day we took him to the track.”
What about Mr. Bowling, who won Fair Grounds’ Grade III Lecomte Stakes last January before wrenching his back in the Risen Star and being taken out of training?
“He’s here, too,” Cindy said, completing her updates on that trio of
3-year-olds owned by Brereton Jones. “We had to turn him out after he
hurt himself in the Risen Star, but he’s back with us now.
“The only one we don’t have back from last year is (Fox Hill Farms’) Havre de Grace,” she concluded, speaking of the 2011 Horse of the Year who won Fair Grounds’ $150,000 New Orleans Ladies last season before being retired later in the year.