United States Naval
Captain and NASA astronaut Mark Kelly made the winner’s presentation
after “The Gabrielle Giffords” on Friday afternoon at Saratoga Race
Course, a race named in honor of his wife, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
Giffords, a representative from Southern Arizona,
is recuperating from injuries sustained when she was shot at a constituent
event on January 8.
“It is great to be here in Saratoga
today,” said Kelly. “I don’t get a lot of chances to come out
to a races and this is certainly a beautiful place to be. It is very nice that The
New York Racing Association decided to honor my wife here today and even though
I was cheering for the Wildcat horse, which is the University of Arizona,
[Pure Gossip] came in and that's great too. It’s really a spectacular day
so thank you very much.”
Pure Gossip, a 37-1 longshot, upset the “The Gabrielle
Giffords,” a 5 ½ furlong maiden race for 2-year-old New York-bred
fillies. She returned $76 to her backers in the opening day crowd as she
posted a 3 ¾-length debut victory for Flying Zee Stables, the nom de course of
the late owner, Carl Lizza.
Captain Kelly commanded the final flight of the space shuttle Endeavour,
which landed on June 1 after a 16-day mission to the International Space
Giffords’ Chief of Staff, Pia Carusone, is a Saratoga native and the daughter of John
Carusone, an attorney at Carusone & Carusone, located on Broadway. Photo courtesy of NYRA.