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News and Notes from local racing

COCONINO SLIM_Minnesota Classic Championship_09-02-12_CBY_Finish

Cathy DeCourcy

The Minnesota horse racing family lost a longtime member over the weekend with the passing of Cathy DeCourcy. Ms. DeCourcy was involved in racing for more than two decades. She was a loyal and active Minnesota Thoroughbred Association member who at one time served on the board of directors. She was also an active community member of Sunfish Lake where she was elected to the city council.

Cathy is best known in the racing world as the owner and breeder of Coconino Slim, winner of the Minnesota Classic Championship three consecutive years from 2012-2014.   The son of Slew City Slew was out of the stakes-winning Minnesota-bred mare Wonder Luck, who Cathy and her husband Don campaigned in the early 90s. Wonder Luck won the Minnesota Distaff Stakes in 1993 when Canterbury had gone dark and the Minnesota-bred stakes were run at Arlington Park.

Coconino Slim won eight of 25 lifetime races for DeCourcy, seven of them in Shakopee, and more than $235,000 in purses.

Bad Beat of the Week

The In The Money Handicapping Contest last Saturday featured a 13-race minefield from Fair Grounds. The object of the contest is to select one horse in each race that will finish top three and to make it through the entire card. Those participants that do so move to the next race. Those that fail are eliminated. The contest plodded on with the expected casualties along the way. In the 11th race two of the remaining three players were eliminated.

The lone surviving player’s race 12 selection was 15-1 on the morning line, a relatively unconventional pick in this format. The horse won at 17-1.

In the final race he took the horse that ended up the betting favorite and would win $800 if the chalk hits the board. He was also alive to a few pieces in the pick four.

At the top of the stretch, one of his pick four horses was clear on the lead and would pay more than $3,000 should it hang on. The In The Money horse was battling for third. As this is a bad beat story, you can guess how it ends. The pick four runner got passed in deep stretch by a horse that he did not have. The In The Money favorite faltered and finished fourth, three-quarters of a length behind the third-place horse. From $4,000 to nothing in a matter of seconds.   When queried about the outcome, the veteran horse player, obviously no stranger to pari-mutuel tragedy, said: “There’s another race tomorrow!”

There is also another In The Money Contest this Saturday with $1,000 or more in the prize pool.  The contest track is Tampa Bay Downs. Entry fee is $10.

Horse Player World Series Satellite

This Saturday is a chance to win an entry to the Horse Player World Series at the Orleans Casino Hotel in Las Vegas. The Horse Player World Series Satellite contest format is mythical win/place wagers on 10 races of players’ choosing. Entry fee to the contest is $100. For each 25 entries, one player will win the entry to the HPWS plus airfare and accommodations at the annual March/April handicapping contest. First prize in that event traditionally exceeds $300,000. Complete rules are available on the Canterbury website.