Cinco Star battled to victory in the $50,000 Ralph Strangis Memorial Stakes, winning by a nose over Drop of Golden Sun and paying $36.80 to win. The 5-year-old Minnesota-bred gelding was ridden by Constantino Roman for trainer Mac Robertson and owner John Mentz of Lakeville, Minn. Robertson also trained the prohibitive favorite Hot Shot Kid who encountered traffic trouble in the stretch and finished fourth. The Strangis was to be a rematch between the two richest Minnesota-bred horses in history, Hot Shot Kid and Mr. Jagermeister, but the latter was scratched from the race. Mister Banjoman, trained by Roberston, was also withdrawn.
“I was happy when the two other speed horses scratched,” Mentz said. “Cinco Star was the only speed but I didn’t expect to win. Hot Shot Kid had nowhere to run. We were nothing but lucky.” Cinco Star finished the 7 1/2 furlongs on the turf in 1:28.06.
Robertson also won the first of four $50,000 state-bred stakes races when Defend the Rose went
gate to wire in the six-furlong Frances Genter Stakes, winning by 1 1/2 lengths under Alex Canchari. She paid $5.00 as the favorite and is owned by Novogratz Racing Stables.
The favorite also won the six-furlong Victor S. Myers Stakes. Weekend Ride and jockey Denny Velazquez controlled the race from start to finish, winning by two lengths. The 3-year-old colt is trained by Gary Scherer for Jeff Drown of
St. Cloud, Minn. He returned $3.60 to win.
Firstmate and jockey Roimes Chirinos provided a mild upset in the Minnesota Turf Distaff for owner Barry and Joni Butzow of Eden Prairie, closing on the rail to win the 7 1/2 furlong turf race by a neck over favored Ready to Runaway, also owned by Mentz. The 5-year-old mare is trained by Valorie Lund. She paid $12.80.
Racing continues Thursday at 4:40 p.m.