Trainers like Canterbury Park for their reasons, jockeys for theirs and now it appears that horses, too, like the racetrack for reasons revealed with a simple glance at their PPs. Look no further than Thursday’s first race and the No. 2 horse, an eight-year-old gelding named Duke Deluxe.
Duke is mad about Canterbury and here is the proof:
With a late burst from his eight-year-old lungs, Duke ran down Royal Express and won for the 12th time – by, oh, the width of a nostril.
He has 12 career wins, six seconds and eight thirds from 61 career starts.
Not eye-catching numbers for any specific reason, unless you take a closer look at those PPs. Duke has 12 career wins. A 13th, in mid May, came at the Brown County Fair in South Dakota in an unrecognized race and is not included in his Daily Racing Form list of wins.
Twelve wins, all at Canterbury Park. He clearly likes this racetrack. Couldn’t win at six other tracks, only Canterbury.
A gelded son of Touch Gold, Duke Deluxe is tied with four horses for wins at Canterbury behind three other horses. Two Hall of Fame thoroughbreds – Hoist Her Flag, a two-time Horse of the Year, and John Bullit lead the list with 17 wins. Crocrock is next with 14. Sir Tricky, Texas Trio, Day Timer and Stock Dividend also have 12.
Moments after Duke’s win under Nik Goodwin on Thursday, Deb Bonn was on the cell phone from Canterbury to her daughter Amber,20, back in Aberdeen, S.D. Amber is half owner in the horse that the family refers to as “College Fund.”
Amber has jobs at two restaurants to pay her way through beauty college, but her share of the winnings from Thursday’s win will help considerably. “You can quit one of those jobs,” her mother told her.
Randy Bonn, who has been at Canterbury as an owner or trainer every year since 1985, bought the horse for his cousin, Jeff Boon, and daughter, Amber, in Phoenix last March and sent him to trainer Larry Donlin at Grand Island, Neb., for vetting.
They turned the horse out for 60 days, ran him twice in the South Dakota bushes and then debuted him Thursday in Shakopee, where he was sent off at 10-1, despite his history over this racetrack.
Duke Deluxe broke his maiden at Canterbury on June 21, 2007 in his sixth career start and is 12-3-1 from 21 starts in Shakopee.
Bob Lindgren owned him for three wins four years ago. “Bobbie Grissom called me about him,” Lindgren said. “She told me that the horse didn’t like the hard surface in Phoenix, but that he always did well here.”
A bit of an understatement, to say the least.
A GOODWIN HAT TRICK
Call it a blog boost, a blog bounce or merely a coincidence, but Nik Goodwin had a bang-up night on Thursday’s card.
The 36-year-old native Minnesotan was profiled in a blog story this week, and promptly responded by winning three races on Thursday’s card.
Goodwin won the opening race on the card with Duke Deluxe, the fourth race with Supremo Struckgold and the seventh with Thepointman.
He has 11 wins and is tied for fifth in the rider standings.
He leads the quarter horse standings with some amazing numbers. He has 11 wins, six more than any other rider. He has an amazing 11 wins and 12 seconds from 24 starts.
This blog was written by Canterbury Staff Writer Jim Wells. Wells was a longtime sportswriter at the Pioneer Press and is a member of the Canterbury Park Hall of Fame.
Photo Credit: Coady Photography