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Backside news and Notes April 29, 2018

Horses are gradually filling the stalls on the Canterbury backside with the 70-day race meet just five days away. The May 4 opening night program will feature eight races, with entries for the first day taking place Tuesday.

Saturday’s card has two $50,000 stakes races: The Paul Bunyan and the L’etoile du Nord. Nominations for those races closed Friday. Noms and past performances can be found here.  The first name on the du Nord list is the 2017 Canterbury horse of the meet Amy’s Challenge. The 3-year-old filly however is expected to be entered Monday in either the Kentucky Oaks or the Eight Belles at Churchill.

Trainer Chris Richard will be stabled here this season for the first time. His string, which includes several Minnesota breds owned by Richard Bremer and Cheryl Sprick, is settling into barn A7, which is also where trainer Mike Biehler operates.

Last year’s leading jockey Jareth Loveberry is on site. He was injured in a training accident recently but has fully recovered and has been working horses over the track. He will be represented again this season by Richard Grunder who will also handle the business of Hugo Sanchez.

Ry Eikleberry has returned to the jockey colony. He last rode here regularly in 2015 and won the 2014 riding title. Ry also is one of the top quarter horse riders in Canterbury history. Dean Butler, a five-time riding champ, is also back. Those two share agent Pete Antonucci.

Other riders already signed in by their agents or themselves include Chad Lindsay, Israel Hernandez (who Saturday won the Bossleman Stakes at Fonner and will ride next weekend at Turf Paradise), Leslie Mawing, Orlando Mojica, Patrick Canchari, Lori Keith, and Katlin Bedford. The 2015 leading rider Leandro Goncalves also returns after a two-year hiatus.

New names on the list:  Rilardo Carpio, Francisco Arrieta, Jansen Melancon, Jake Samuels, and Kassie Guglielmino. Santiago Gonzalez, currently riding at Santa Anita, is expected here this week.

Beginning Friday, May 4, opening night of the 70-day horse racing season at Canterbury, Post Time Peach Ale will be flowing at three locations in the Canterbury grandstand as well as the Badger Hill taproom.

Available May 4