Klaravich Stable’s Populist Politics
and Robert Orth and Wes Hawley’s Get in Da House
are set to match strides in the 22nd running of Fair Grounds’ $150,000 Louisiana Champions Day Classic – main event of eight Thoroughbred stakes races restricted to accredited Louisiana-breds Saturday in the Crescent City.
Populist Politics, who has been installed as the 3-1 morning line favorite, and Get in Da House, pegged as the 7-2 second choice, last met when second and third, respectively, a neck apart, in Fair Grounds’ $90,000 Costa Rising Stakes on Louisiana Derby Day last spring. That afternoon they were narrowly defeated by Brittlyn Stable’s Star Guitar, who became the richest Louisiana-bred horse of all time with his victory by a head in that race.
Both Populist Politics and Get in Da House are viable candidates to inherit the state-bred showcased role of Star Guitar, who won the last three renewals of the local Classic before being retired over the summer.
Scott Boudreax, Donald Gaudet and Eddie Johnston’s Lee’s Spirit, 9-2, who defeated Populist Politics in Delta’s $100,000 Gold Cup Oct. 27, and Rebecca Farms and T. J. Dickey’s Heavy On Themister, 5-1, third in that same race, are also considered strong threats in this weekend’s Louisiana Champions Day Classic.
Completing the field is Maggi Moss’s Watch My Smoke (6-1), Maggi Moss’s Lovely Vin (12-1), Allen Peltier’s Idefromthebayou (12-1), David Richardson, Britton Richardson and Sandra New’s Break Up (15-1), Triple R Stable’s Fate’s Right Hand (20-1), Sam Ishaq’s Ten to Midnight (20-1) and Jackie Barberito’s Make It Roses (30-1).STRING KING CHOICE TO DEFEND IN $100,000 LOUISIANA CHAMPIONS DAY TURF
Charles Craig Smith’s String King
, victor by a nose in last year’s $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Turf, has been made the 9-5 morning line choice to defend his title in Saturday’s renewal.
Bred and trained by his owner, String King won the $60,000 Mr. Sulu Stakes here on Thanksgiving’s Opening Day program.
Red Oak Stable’s Kissimmee Kyle
, who finished second by a nose to String King in last year’s Champions Day Turf, is the 4-1 second choice in the early line for Saturday’s renewal.
The other Thoroughbred stakes races slated for state-bred restricted Louisiana Champions Day are the $100,000 LCD Juvenile for 2-year-olds, $100,000 LCD Lassie for 2-year-old fillies, $100,000 LCD Ladies for older fillies and mares, $100,000 LCD Ladies Sprint for sprinters in that same division, $100,000 LCD Sprint open to all Louisiana-bred speedsters, and $50,000 LCD Handicap Stakes for state-breds 3-years-old and up.
Three $100,000 stakes for accredited Louisiana-bred American Quarter Horses open Saturday’s expanded 13-race program.SPECIAL 12:15 POST SATURDAY
Due to the expanded 13-race program set for Saturday’s 22nd renewal of Louisiana Champions Day at Fair Grounds a special early post time of 12:15 p.m. will be in effect. Gates will open at 10:30 a.m., at which time fans will be able to pick up free Star Guitar posters (first 5,000 fans) courtesy of Fair Grounds and free Star Guitar T-shirts (first 750 fans) courtesy of Brittlyn Stable.LTBA AND FAIR GROUNDS SALUTE ARMED FORCES
The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association (LTBA) and Fair Grounds are saluting all branches of the military on Louisiana Champions Day.
Representatives from the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy will be honored at the LTBA Gala at Fair Grounds the evening of December 7 and will present all trophies and awards to the winning connections for each of the Louisiana Champions Day races.
At 11:45 a.m., a half-hour before first post, a Marine detail will handle the colors presentation in the Winner’s Circle while Chris Gray performs the National Anthem.NEW HALL OF FAME ROOM TO HOST FREE HANDICAPPING SEMINARS STARTING SATURDAY
The free “No Favorites Allowed” handicapping seminars return to Fair Grounds starting Saturday in the newly christened “Hall of Fame Room” on the second floor. Moderator Jim Mulvihill and guest handicappers Brian “The Biscuit” Kohn and Gary Palmisano Jr. will preview every race on the card with an emphasis on horses that offer value. The weekly seminars, which start 40 minutes before the first race (11:30 a.m. this week due to the early 12:10 p.m. first post for Louisiana Champions Day), are open to handicappers of all skill levels.
The new Hall of Fame Room, open to the public only for handicapping seminars, is located on the west side (up the stretch) of the Grandstand’s second floor, across from the Fair Grounds Hall of Fame exhibit. The Hall of Fame Room features large flat-screen monitors, a private self-service mutuel machine and offers a striking view of the paddock through the 15-foot windows above the Jockeys’ Quarters.