“Pink Day” Fundraiser for the Shantel Lanerie Cancer Breast Foundation Set for Saturday, September 19
Bossier City, LA – Quality Louisiana-bred horses and a great cause will make Saturday, September 19 a very special day at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs.
There was uncertainty early in the meet regarding the status of Louisiana Cup Day, which is usually held in the first week of August. However, Roger Heitzmann, Executive Director of the LTBA; Ed Fenasci, Executive Director of the HBPA and David Heitzmann, Director of Racing at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, worked together and the stakes-filled day saluting Louisiana-bred was placed on the calendar.
“Roger presented us with a plan which we believe will work,” said Warren Harang III, President of the LTBA. “We will be creative and work outside the box to accomplish this. We will be utilizing funds that we don’t normally use for purse supplements. Helping the horsemen of Louisiana is always our mission. Adding back six black-type races helps the breeders, the horsemen participating in the races, as well as the track itself.”
Trainers have responded enthusiastically to the news, and even though nominations are not due until next month, several multiple stakes winners are pointing to Louisiana Cup Day. Joey Foster confirmed that Our Lost Love will seek her third stakes win. Bred and owned by Tri-Star Racing LLC, the 3-year-old daughter of Half Ours has already eclipsed the $200,000 earnings mark with five wins from nine starts. The talented filly broke her maiden at Louisiana Downs last September and won her first stakes, the $93,700 Louisiana Futurity on December 29 at Fair Grounds. Two months later, she added a victory in the $70,000 Take Charge Brandi at Delta Downs. On August 8, she made easy work of her rivals, winning a five-furlong sprint in :57.35 seconds.
“Knowing that we can run on Cup Day means everything for me and my owners,” said Foster. “Our Lost Love showed us she is ready, getting the win (on August 8) so easily with the rail out. We’ve got big plans for Cup Day!”
Allen Landry is another Louisiana-based conditioner who is pleased that Cup Day will return to Harrah’s Louisiana Downs for the 2020 Thoroughbred meet.
“David (Heitzmann) has done a good job for us this year,” acknowledged Landry. “The communication to the horsemen is important. We were hoping to have stakes races this meet; I have several horses that I plan to run.”
The top earner in his barn is Rodney Verret’s Laughingsaintssong, a 6-year-old gelding bred by J.E. Jumonville and his wife, Bunny, who own one of the top Quarter Horse farms in Louisiana. They own a Vindication mare Laughing Saint and bred her to Grade 1 winner Songandaprayer. He boasts a record of ten wins and earnings of $363,010 and won the 2019 Louisiana Cup Sprint as well as the Louisiana Champions Day Sprint at Fair Grounds. Landry will look to the turf for
Net A Bear, a 4-year-old filly by Awesome Bet owned by Maximo Lamarche and Federico Deltoro. She is also a multiple-stakes winner for breeder Lora Pitre with victories in the 2019 Elge Rasberry at Louisiana Downs and Louisiana Champions Day Turf at Fair Grounds.
Further information on the following Louisiana Cup Day features is posted on Equibase.
$40,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile 2 YO LA-Bred Six furlongs
$40,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies 2 YO Fillies LA-Bred Six furlongs
$40,000 Louisiana Cup Filly & Mare Sprint 3 YO & Up F&M, LA-Bred Six furlongs
$40,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint 3 YO & Up LA-Bred Six furlongs
$40,000 Louisiana Cup Turf Classic 3 YO & Up LA-Bred 1 1/16 miles (T)
$40,000 Louisiana Distaff 3 YO & Up F & M LA-Bred 1 1/16 miles (T)
Nominations will close on Saturday, September 5. Contact David Heitzmann at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (318) 741-2511.
Shantel Lanerie Breast Cancer Fundraiser To Take Place on Louisiana Cup Day
Harrah’s Louisiana Downs will conduct a fundraiser on Saturday, September 19 in support of the Shantel Lanerie Cancer Breast Foundation. The beloved Louisiana native and wife of jockey Corey Lanerie was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in January, 2018 and passed away just six months later. She is survived by her parents, husband and daughter, Brittlyn.
Rick Mocklin, who was Lanerie’s agent for ten years and his wife, Janette, were close friends of Shantel. Mocklin serves as founder and president of the Shantel Lanerie Breast Cancer Foundation (SLBCF). The 501(c)(3) organization was founded in September, 2018 with a mission of educating, empowering and encouraging women to become pro-active in early detection, and if diagnosed, surviving breast cancer. Acknowledging that breast cancer impacts the entire family, the Foundation designates funds raised through donations and fundraisers to assist with basic needs of breast cancer patients through every stage of diagnosis and treatment.
Beginning at 2:00 pm on Louisiana Cup Day, a table will be set up in the grandstand with monogrammed apparel and memorabilia. Jockeys will be on hand to autograph the items, with all proceeds to benefit the foundation. Fans will be able to stop by the table, purchase items or make donations until 6:00 pm.
Mocklin has reached out to each of the Louisiana racetracks on their premier racing days to support fundraising efforts for the foundation. Sadly, due to COVID-19, many of the scheduled events this year have been canceled.
“The pandemic has affected so many people this year and events at many tracks were not able to take place,” said Mocklin. “We are grateful to Louisiana Downs for welcoming us back on Cup Day again this year.
“Breast cancer can be devastating for so many people,” added Mocklin. “To lose Shantel when she was just 42 years-old was heartbreaking for her family and many friends. The foundation has already helped 40 women diagnosed with breast cancer and we want to keep raising funds to support those in need.”
Handicapping Preview Show Set for Saturday, September 19
Louisiana Downs track announcer John McGary and regional racing publicist Martha Claussen will team up for a pre-race handicapping preview at 2:00 pm in the Inside Rail, located on the first floor of the grandstand. They will offer analysis and their selections for each of the races on the Louisiana Cup Day card. The seminar is free and open to all racing fans.
Spots Still Available for Charity Golf Tournament on Thursday, August 20
Harrah’s Louisiana Downs will host a Charity Golf Tournament at Northwood Hills Golf Club in Shreveport, Louisiana on Thursday, August 20.
The event will benefit Chaplain Jimmy Sistrunk and The Backside Benevolence Fund, which provides valuable assistance to the Louisiana racing community and backstretch workers. The sign in for the event’s Four Person Scramble kicks off at 10:00 a.m. with tee off at 10:30 a.m. The fee is $80 per person or $320 for a four-person team. The fee includes green fees, golf cart, lunch, and t-shirt/cap. Attendees can register in person in the Louisiana Downs Racing office, or by contacting Jennifer Sokol at (318) 741-2512.
Louisiana Downs Trainer, Jockey and Owner Standings
Through August 16, Karl Broberg tops the trainer standings with 27 wins since the meet began on June 6. Shane Wilson has moved into second place with 22 victories and Steve Asmussen follows closely with 21 wins. Last year’s leading conditioner Joey Foster rounds out the top four conditioners; his runners have made 16 trips to the winner’s circle.
Joel Dominguez continues to rack up the wins in a very competitive jockey colony and leads his fellow riders with 38 wins. Jack Gilligan, who rides first-call for Broberg, is second with 33 trips to the winner’s circle and Jose Andres Guerrero has moved into third place in the standings with 27 victories. In fourth place is last year’s leading jockey Carlos Lozada who has ridden 24 winners to date.
Competition is also very tight in the battle for leader owner with Steve Asmussen and Wayne T. Davis tied with 13 wins each. End Zone Athletics Inc. follows closely with 11 victories and M and M Racing (Mike Sisk) has moved into fourth place with 8 wins.
Post Times and Racing Dates
The 2020 Thoroughbred racing season at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs got underway on Saturday, June 6. The 64-day meet will run Saturday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday through September 23. Post time is 3:05 pm (Central).
About Harrah’s Louisiana Downs
Located near Shreveport in Bossier City, Louisiana, Louisiana Downs opened in 1974 and was purchased by Caesars Entertainment in December, 2002. With annual Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing seasons, the track is committed to presenting the highest quality racing programs paired with its 150,000 square foot entertainment complex offering casino gambling, dining and plasma screen televisions for sports and simulcast racing.