Star Rules, Sammy and Shorty make chalk players happy in Belterra Park stakes

CINCINNATI — The favorites came through in credible fashion, accounting for back-to-back Ohio-recognized bets that ended Friday’s card of an eight-race race at Belterra Park.

Star Rules, fielding 11 Phillies, rallied to a 1-2 side and going 1 1/16 miles on a firm turf, rallied under John Mackie to win the $75,000 Miss Southern Ohio. Some 30 minutes later, Sammy and Shorty were the 4 1/4-length winners over seven other 2-year-olds at par in the $75,000 loyalty stakes, which were run over six furlongs on the main track.

Both stake winners were channeled by Mobil, a 22-year-old stallion who stands at Mapleton Thoroughbred Farm in Polk, Ohio.

Mackie said she thought a bad break might have cost her the Star Rules race at Miss Ohio, but she told her to settle into a comfortable eighth-place finish in the back. Mackie, 41, put Star Rules in high gear at the stretch down as she won by a 1 1/2 length over Goodness Sachs. Legendary Kitten finished third and Catabout fourth.

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Star Rules, runner-up at 2021 Miss Southern Ohio, returned $3 after finishing in 1:43.48. The 5-year-old mare, owned by Doris Tumillo, is based in Aiken, SC, where she was due to return Saturday morning for an 8 1/2-hour van ride.

“He’s used to it,” said trainer Kenny Huffman, with a smile.

The start of Miss Southern Ohio was delayed because two runners from the Robert Gorham barn were involved. Goodness Sachs, eventual runner-up, left the paddock with saddletowel No. 10 and Perry Ozets, while Out for Fun wore No. 6 with Julio Felix. Each should have had each other’s towel and jockeys.

Fortunately, after the error was detected shortly before the scheduled time, both horses were returned to the paddock to be properly reassembled.

In Loyalty, Sammy and Shorty tracked down the early leaders under Luis Rivera before heading up the aisle. He returned $4 for the win after finishing in 1:13.78.

The Dark Bay gelding was on his third start coming in a third-place finish at Cleveland Kindergarten in Thistledown on August 13. He is owned by an Italian stallion and trained by Jeff Radosevich.

Enthusiasm was second in loyalty, followed by Ronnie’s Wind, one of two Phillies in the lineup.

The 2022 Belterra Milan runs through October 11.


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