CARLOS LOZADA, SHANE WILSON AND WAYNE T. DAVIS TOPPED THE STANDINGS IN THE 2021 LOUISIANA DOWNS THOROUGHBRED LIVE RACING SEASON

Bossier City, LA – The 2021 Thoroughbred racing season at Louisiana Downs concluded on Tuesday, September 21.  The meet leaders, jockey Carlos Lozada, trainer Shane Wilson and owner Wayne T. Davis were honored for their accomplishments on the final afternoon of the 84-day meet, which began on Saturday, May 1.

 

Carlos Lozada Wins His Second Leading Rider Title

Carlos Lozada who won his first title here in 2019, clinched top honors once again. He has been  dominant throughout the meet, topping a very competitive jockey colony and holding off 2020 leading rider Joel Dominguez by four wins.

 

The 36-year-old native of Puerto Rico began riding in the United States in 2007 after attending Puerto Rico’s Escuela Vocational Hipica, the famed jockey school with a noted list of riders, including Irad Ortiz, Jr, Jose Ortiz as well as 2018 Louisiana Downs top-ranked rider, Emanuel Nieves.

 

Lozada, won races for a variety of trainers including Joey Foster, Karl Broberg, Tim Dixon, Al Cates and Justin Jeansonne. He was named on 391mounts, with a record of 84 wins, 76 seconds, 60 thirds and purses of $1,053,720.

 

Winning his second leading rider title Louisiana Downs meant a great deal to the devoted family man, supported by his wife, Eileen Quinones and their three sons: Anthony, who celebrated his 17th birthday on September 21;Jean Carlos and Jandriel.

 

“I thank my family, my agent Ronald Ardoin and each of the owners and trainers who supported me this season,” said Lozada. “Louisiana Downs has been a very good track for me; I really enjoy the daytime schedule!”

 

Lozada plans to winter in Tampa and ride next at Tampa Bay Downs before returning to Louisiana Downs next May.

 

Joel Dominguez finished second with 80 trips to the winner’s circle, edging Lozada slightly in purses, with mounts earning $1,057,585. Emanuel Nieves finished the meet well, winning 72 races and Juan P. Vargas was fourth in the standings with 70 trips to the winner’s circle.

 

Shane Wilson Honored as Leading Trainer

In his second year of running a barn at Louisiana Downs, Shane Wilson topped his fellow conditioners with 55 victories.

 

The Haughton, Louisiana resident won 32 races last year and credited David Heitzmann, Louisiana Downs Director of Racing, for initiating a plan for the 2020 live racing season before any other racetrack.

 

“David helped the horsemen with the uncertainty of COVID-19 last year,” said Wilson. “Louisiana Downs has great racing surfaces and the location works for shipping to Dallas and Hot Springs.”

 

His success in 2020 propelled Wilson to formulate a plan for the 2021 live racing season.

 

“Returning this year, I claimed horses for my leading client, Wayne T. Davis and several other owners. We had a plan and it came together very well.”

 

His top claimer is Emerald Forest who Wilson convinced Davis to take from Joe Sharp for $15,000 last February at Fair Grounds.  It was one of Wilson’s toughest conversations as Davis countered the suggestion with “You want me to spend $15,000 on a horse that lost by 31 lengths?”

 

Wilson was strongly convinced that the 3-year-old gelding by Gemologist was not suited for the turf and would fare better on the main track.

 

And boy, was he right! He won a maiden special weight on April 6, and captured three of his four starts at Louisiana Downs. On July 13, he set a new seven-furlong track record of 1:21.07, drawing off to a ten-length victory under Jose Guerrero.

 

“We’re going to try the big boys at Churchill Downs next,” said Wilson.

 

Both Guerrero and Alexander Castillo have ridden well for Wilson this season at Louisiana Downs.

 

“I took a long look at the jockey colony and liked the fact that both Alexander Castillo and Jose Guerrero finished in the top five,” he explained. “These guys try hard on each mount and won some races at big prices. I worked with their agent, Steve Melancon, and decided to give them a chance. They have worked hard for us and I believe in loyalty.”

 

Wilson played football and basketball in high school and college and developed a fierce competitive drive, which fuels him to this day.

 

“I wasn’t the best athlete, but beat better by being prepared,” he said.  “I never accepted I was going to lose until the game was over!”

 

It’s a family affair at the Wilson barn, with his wife Becky and younger son, Connor, sharing in the key duties.

 

“I don’t hunt, fish or play golf,” stated Wilson. “It’s all about the horses and thankfully, Becky, Connor and my oldest son, Peyton, understand that!”

 

Joey Foster, who has won the trainer title three times, finished second with 40 wins. Joe Duhon followed with 33 victories and Karl Broberg rounded out the top four with 30 wins.

 

 

Leading Owner Title Goes to Wayne T. Davis

The leading owner of the meet is Wayne T. Davis who topped the standings with 25 victories. The 92-year-old Louisiana businessman has been an owner for over 20 years and he and Wilson have teamed with a wide range of Thoroughbreds; their most successful to date is Grade 3 winner Mocito Rojo.

 

End Zone Athletics, Inc., who took the owner title in 2019 and 2020, finished second.  The highly successful partnership of Karl Broberg and Matt Johanson won 20 races this meet.  Dream Walkin Farms, Inc. was thirdin the standings with 18 wins and Justin Jeansonne had 11 victories to finish fourth.

 

About 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.

 

CLOSE BATTLE FOR LEADING JOCKEY HONORS BETWEEN CARLOS LOZADA AND JOEL DOMINGUEZ HEADS INTO THE FINAL WEEK OF THE LOUISIANA DOWNS THOROUGHBRED MEET

Bossier City, LA – The 2021 Thoroughbred racing season at Louisiana Downs will conclude on Tuesday, September 21.  The 84-day season began on May 1 and two former leading riders, Carlos Lozada and Joel Dominguez, have been on top of the standings throughout the meet.

 

Heading into the final four days of the season, Lozada holds a narrow edge of 2 wins. For the past three years, Lozada and Dominguez have topped the jockey standings at the Bossier City racetrack. In 2019, it was Lozada winning his first leading rider title, edging Dominguez 96 to 91. Last year, Dominguez won his first career title in dominating fashion, winning 71 races; 30 more than Lozada.  But this year, they have remained neck and neck since May, with Lozada heading into the final week with 80 wins to 78 trips to the winner’s circle for Dominguez.

 

Lozada is a 36-year-old native of Puerto Rico who began riding in the United States in 2007 after attending Puerto Rico’s Escuela Vocational Hipica. The famed jockey school has a noted list of graduates, including Irad Ortiz, Jr, Jose Ortiz as well as 2018 Louisiana Downs top-ranked rider, Emanuel Nieves.

 

He has been prominent throughout the meet, winning races for a variety of trainers including Joey Foster, Karl Broberg, Tim Dixon, Al Cates and Justin Jeansonne,

 

Now in his fifth year at the Bossier City racetrack, Dominguez earned his first leading rider title last year at Louisiana Downs. The31-year-old native of Durango, Mexico galloped for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen in Kentucky when he first came to the United States.  Last year, Dominguez began riding first call for Asmussen at Louisiana Downs and credits the all-time leading Thoroughbred conditioner for giving him quality mounts and growing confidence.

 

“Riding for Steve has been a tremendous for me,” said Dominguez. “I am very grateful to him and also appreciate many other horsemen who have given me opportunities. David Gomez is coming up and does a great job with his runners. Also, I get along very well with Jose Camejo who gave me the call aboard Crescentcitypretty on Louisiana Cup Day. She’s a very talented filly.”

 

Both riders have top caliber agents. Lozada is represented by former jockey Ronald Ardoin, who piloted 5,226 winners in his storied career while Don Simington handles business for Dominguez. Simington won 3,427 races in Texas and Louisiana and has long term relationships with top  horsemen and new outfits running in Louisiana.

 

“There is no doubt that Ronald made a big difference for me,” said Lozada. “He works hard in the mornings and gets me a lot of mounts. He won so many races in his career and is very helpful when I ask for advice.”

 

The competition between the two riders, both devoted family men, is strong.

 

“I’m hoping to win the title again,” said Dominguez. “But overall, it’s been a very good meet. I won more races this year than last, and with the schedule, have also been able to compete at Evangeline Downs. I will ride at Delta Downs from here and look forward to that meet.”

 

 

Shane Wilson and Wayne T. Davis Lead in the Trainer and Owner Standings

The presentation of leading rider honors may very well go down to the final race on Tuesday’s program. However, Shane Wilson, looks likely to keep his lead in the trainer standings. The Haughton, Louisiana resident heads into next week with 53 wins while Joey Foster remains in second with 39 first-place finishes and Joe Duhon is third in the standings with 31 wins.

 

The leading owner of the meet appears to be Wayne T. Davis who tops the standings with 25 victories. The 91-year-old Louisiana businessman has been an owner for over 20 years and he and Wilson have teamed with a wide range of Thoroughbreds; their most successful to date is Grade 3 winner Mocito Rojo. End Zone Athletics, Inc. and  Dream Walkin Farms, Inc. are tied for second with 18 wins each.

 

The Louisiana Downs live Thoroughbred racing season will conclude with racing on Saturday, September 18, Sunday, September 19, Monday, September 20 and Tuesday, September 21. Post time is 2:45 pm (Central).

 

 

About 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.

CAMEL AND OSTRICH RACES RETURN TO LOUISIANA DOWNS ON SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 5

Solid Handle Increase Noted on Louisiana Cup Day

 

Bossier City, LA – As a result of the enthusiast response from racing fans of all ages, Louisiana Downs will once again present Camel and Ostrich Races on Sunday, September 5. The Bossier City racetrack welcomed the exotic animals on Sunday, May 30 to the delight of the crowd. The wildly popular special event, combined with live Thoroughbred racing and simulcast racing from tracks across the country, will make for a very enjoyable Labor Day weekend outing.

 

The first live Thoroughbred race runs at 2:45 pm (Central) with the 100-yard camel race to be run following the fourth race of the afternoon (approximately 4:15 pm) and the super speedy ostriches scheduled to take to the track after race six.

 

For further details on Labor Day weekend racing and festivities at Louisiana Downs, click HERE.

 

Louisiana Cup Day Handle Success

Louisiana Cup Day on Saturday, August 21 featured six $50,000 stakes for Louisiana Thoroughbreds. The annual afternoon of racing salutes the breeders, owners, trainersand jockeys who give so much to the Louisiana Thoroughbred industry. It was also an excellent day regarding handle with a total of $1,440,039 million wagered on the seven-race card.  That represented an increase from the 2020 Louisiana Cup day handle of $1,210,487 with eight races on the program.

 

Officials had requested permission from the Louisiana State Racing Commission to offer the Pick 5 wager with a mandatory payout. With the carryover of $349,000heading into August 21, the pool reached $476,970.  Plenty of handicappers put together winning tickets and were rewarded with a payout of $3,353.

 

Race 3     $50,000 Louisiana Cup Distaff                              Net a Bear                   $4.40

Race 4     $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile                             True Deal                    $12.60

Race 5     $50,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint                                Chu Chu’s Legacy      $15.80

Race 6     $50,000 Louisiana Cup Turf Classic                      Carlea’s Dream           $5.80

Race 7     $50,000 Louisiana Cup Filly & Mare Sprint          Strong Beauty             $10.80

 

“We were very pleased with this year’s Louisiana Cup Day,” said David Heitzmann, Louisiana Downs Director of Racing. “We were able to run stakes on the main track as well as the turf and  our horseplayers responded very well to the Pick 5 wager which boosted our handle for the day. We thank our horsemen and fans for their support of our premier day of racing!”

 

Registration Still Open for the Annual Charity Golf Tournament

Louisiana Downs will host its annual Charity Golf Tournament at Northwood Hills Golf Club in Shreveport, Louisiana on Wednesday September 1.The event will benefit The Winner’s Circle Church and Chaplain Jimmy Sistrunk for his many programs to assist the Louisiana Downs racing community and backstretch workers.

 

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 Super Derby t-shirt/cap. Trophies will be presented to the first, second and third-place teams.

 

The deadline to enter is Wednesday, August 25th. Attendees can register in person in the Louisiana Downs Racing office, or by mail. Checks should be payable to The Backside Benevolence Fund and mailed to:  Jennifer Sokol, Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, 8000 East Texas Street, Bossier City, Louisiana, 71111.  For further information, please contact Jennifer Sokol at (318) 741-2512 or (318) 573-5830.

 

Louisiana Downs Trainer, Jockey and Owner Standings

Through August 24, Shane Wilson leads his fellow conditioners with 42 wins since the 2021 Thoroughbred meet began on May 1.  Joey Foster has saddled 32 winners and Joe Duhon rounds out the top three with 27 wins.

 

Joel Dominguez, who won the title last year, is currently on top of the jockey standings with 67 wins. Also having an excellent meet is 2019 leading rider Carlos Lozada with 65 victories and Emanuel Nieves with 59 trips to the winner’s circle.

 

Competition is also very tight in the battle for leader owner with Wayne T. Davis in the lead with 21 wins. End Zone Athletics Inc. follows with 18 victories and Dream Walkin Farms Inc. is in third place with 16 wins.

 

Live racing takes place Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until the conclusion of the 2021 Thoroughbred meet on Tuesday, September 21.

 

About 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.

 

LOUISIANA CUP DAY FILLED WITH THRILLING FINISHES AND PRIDE FROM EACH OF THE WINNING CONNECTIONS

Trainer Allen Landry Wins Two of the Six Features

 

Bossier City, LA – Temperatures rose into the upper 90’s Saturday afternoon at Louisiana Downs but excellent efforts were on display in each of the six black-type stakes on Louisiana Cup Day.

 

Wholelottamo with jockey Timothy Thornton aboard pulls away to win the 11th running of the Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies Stake at Louisiana Downs. Hodges Photography / Ann Switalski

Driving Finish By Wholelottamo in the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies

Stakes action began with the running of the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies. A very competitive field of eight accredited 2-year-old Louisiana-bred fillies entered the gate for the six furlong contest with a confident score by Wholelottamo.

 

Owned by Thompson Racing LLC, the daughter of Mo Tom made her Louisiana Downs debut after two starts at Lone Star Park. Tim Thornton, who is just one win away from his 2,500th career victory, guided the chestnut filly to the wire in 1:12.97, winning by a margin of 2 ½  lengths. Trainer Scott Gelner was not surprised at her victory, citing the tough company she faced in her June 5 debut.

 

“She ran against two really nice fillies in that race,” said Gelner. “One of them (Wicked Halo) won a Grade 2 at Saratoga. I have to give credit to my son (assistant trainer, JJ). He’s not here; he;s on vacation in the Bahamas!”

 

Early pacesetter Streak of Silver hung on for second under Lindey Wade, followed by Free Like a Girl and Buckely Bunny.

 

Bred by Cloyce C. Clark, Jr.,  Wholelottamo ($5.20) has now won two of her three starts and banked $57,925.

 

Net A Bear wins the 36th running of the Louisiana Cup Distaff at Louisiana Downs. Hodges Photography / Ann Switalski

Net a Bear Turned Back Five Rivals in the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Distaff

The first turf  stakes of the card, the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Distaff, drew six fillies and mares who traveled a mile and one-sixteenth over the Franks Turf Course. Due to heavy rain earlier this week, it was listed as good and proved no obstacle for Net a Bear.

 

The 5-year-old filly by Awesome Bet out of the Eddington mare Edacious Reality, owned by Maximo Lamarche and Federico Deltoro, was the 3-2 morning line favorite. The  multiple-stakes winner for breeders Lora Pitre and Elaine Carroll exited a victory in the $60,000 Opelousas Stakes at Evangeline Downs on July 2.

 

Tim Thornton patiently saved ground, tracking familiar foe Offspring in splits of :24.47; :49.51 and 1:14.18 before taking the lead and finishing in 1:45.01.

 

“She’s such a nice filly to ride,” said Thornton. “I have always ridden her with a game plan, but know she will be there when I call on her. I let her settle and when I called on her, she was game. Allen’s done a great job with her.”

 

Net a Bear (4.40) improved her record to seven wins from 25 starts. Her check for $30,000 increased her earnings to $352,070.

 

Oak Tree Stable’s Offspring completed the exacta with Fort Polk running third and Freda’s Smooth Air running fourth.

 

Jockey Joe Stokes guides True Deal to victory in the11th running of the Louisiana Cup Juvenile at Louisiana Downs. Hodges Photography / Ann Switalski

True Deal Resurgent in the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile

The fourth race of the afternoon was the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile for Louisiana-bred 2-year-old colts and geldings.

 

Morning line favoritism in the six furlong stakes went to Norman Stables LLC True Deal, a colt by True Deal out of the Big Brown mare Hilarious Brown. Although he did not leave the gates as the favorite, he would not be denied as he closed gamely under jockey Joe Stokes to win his first career stakes.

 

Sent off as the third choice in the nine horse field, True Deal (12.60) finished by a neck over Family Creed in a final time of 1:12.97.

 

Trainer Lonnie Briley has been pleased with efforts of his colt who is sired by leading first crop Louisiana stallion El Deal.

 

“I’ve liked him a lot,” said Briley. “He’s easy to train and doesn’t make any mistakes. His sire is by Munnings, so even though he ran well today, I think he can go faster and should do very well either stretching out or on the turf.”

 

The victory marked the second win for breeder Cloyce C. Clark Jr.Tambourine Star finished third behind Family Creed with longshot Son Carlos completing the superfecta.

 

Chu Chu’s Legacy wins the 42nd running of the Louisiana Cup Sprint at Louisiana Downs. Hodges Photography

Chu Chu’s Legacy Earns His Second Louisiana Cup Day Score Taking the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint

Allen Landry’s Chu Chu’s Legacy is no stranger to success on statebred racing stakes days. He won the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile last year and turned back a very tough field of sprinters today as he captured the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint.

 

It was the second 2021 Louisiana Cup victory for owner/trainer Landry, who was reached by phone following the win.

 

“He’s just amazing,” said Landry who purchased the colt for a modest $4,000 at the Equine Sales Mixed Sale. “I was a little leary of running him against older horses, but he does everything I have asked him to do.”

 

Rider Joe Stokes took control at the top of the stretch and drew off to finish 1 ½ lengths ahead of Scarlettsblackjack in 1:10.79.

 

“He broke well and sat behind the speed,” said Stokes. “When I asked him, he just responded. He’s a hell of a horse!”

 

Landry’s wife Sandra named the colt after Chu Chu Perez who worked for the couple as a groom, but passed away last year.

 

Monte Man, who won the 2018 Louisiana Cup Sprint, ran a game third under Gerard Melancon, followed by Half Again..

 

Sent off at odds of 7-1, Chu Chu’s Legacy paid $15.80 for the win, which was his sixth in ten starts. With today’s winner’s share of $30,000, his earnings stand at $206,350.     

 

Lindsey Wade aboard Carlea’s Dream wins the Louisiana Cup Turf Classic. Hodges Photography / Ann Switalski

Carlea’s Dream Splits Rivals in an Exciting $50,000 Louisiana Cup Turf Classic

The $50,000 Louisiana Turf Cup Classic an excellent group of turf specialists competing a mile and one sixteenth over the good turf course.

 

Carlea’s Dream, was installed as the 5-2 morning line choice, lived up to his billing for owner Carl Moore Management. Lindey Wade made the trip to Louisiana Downs to pilot the 4-year-old son of Lea out of the Corinthian mare Beat The Street. Bred by Time Will Tell LLC, Carlea’s Dream won in 1:44.37.

 

“It was so nice to come home and I am grateful to Karen for bringing me in to ride,” said Wade. “I knew this horse had it in him and could win a Louisiana-bred stakes.

 

The bay gelding had won two turf races this year in Texas. Trainer Karen Jacks said that he will stay in Louisiana and run in an upcoming turf stakes.

 

“He’s just like his name, a dream to train,” she said. “He loves the turf, like all horses sired by

Lea. His only two bad efforts were races taken off the turf.”

 

Britts a Closer, who broke his maiden on the Franks Turf Course last year, was in contention and held for second under leading rider Joel Dominguez. Mangelsen was third with Unrestricted completing the superfecta.

 

 

Strong Beauty with Carlos Marquez aboard wins the 39th running of the Louisiana Cup Filly and Mare Sprint. Hodges Photography / Ann Switalski

Strong Beauty Won Her First Stakes in the $50,000 Louisiana Cup Filly and Mare Sprint

Trainer Ron Faucheux had a full group of stakes entrants, but had to wait until the final feature of the day, the $50,000 Louisiana Filly and Mare Sprint, to visit the winner’s circle.

 

Strong Beauty,  owned by Golden Rock Thoroughbreds, defeated a  highly competitive group of distaffers, including defending champion Tin Roof Farms LLC’s Snowball, and LTBA champion 4-year-old filly Our Lost Love.

 

Ridden by Carlos Marquez, the daughter of Overanalyze, earned her first stakes score, closing from off the pace to win the six furlong contest in 1:11.69.

 

“We got her at the Fair Grounds and she has just continued to progress,”said Faucheaux. “She is now in her top form and I expect good things from her as we move forward. Carlos rode a perfect race. This was very exciting!”

 

Crescentcitypretty ran second, followed by Snowball and Dance Away.

 

Strong Beauty ($10.80) will be pointed to Louisiana Champions Day at Fair Grounds, according to her trainer.

 

Registration Still Open for the Annual Charity Golf Tournament

Louisiana Downs will host its annual Charity Golf Tournament at Northwood Hills Golf Club in Shreveport, Louisiana on Wednesday September 1.The event will benefit The Winner’s Circle Church and Chaplain Jimmy Sistrunk for his many programs to assist the Louisiana Downs racing community and backstretch workers.

 

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 personor $320 for a four-person team.  The fee includes green fees, golf cart, lunch, and Super Derby t-shirt/cap. Trophies will be presented to the first, second and third-place teams.

 

The deadline to enter is Wednesday, August 25th. Attendees can register in person in the Louisiana Downs Racing office, or by mail. Checks should be payable to The Backside Benevolence Fund and mailed to:  Jennifer Sokol, Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, 8000 East Texas Street, Bossier City, Louisiana, 71111.  For further information, please contact Jennifer Sokol at (318) 741-2512 or (318) 573-5830.

 

Louisiana Downs Live Racing Schedule

Live racing takes place Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until the conclusion of the 2021 Thoroughbred meet on Tuesday, September 21. For more information on the 84-day racing season and special events, visit https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-louisiana-downs/racing.

LOUISIANA DOWNS PAYS TRIBUTE TO TRAINER STEVE ASMUSSEN AFTER HE SURPASSED DALE BAIRD’S RECORD OF 9,445 WINS ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 7

Nominations Closed for Louisiana Cup Day on August 21

 

Bossier City, LA – The Thoroughbred racing community was united in watching the progression of trainer Steve Asmussen as he inched closer to breaking the record of 9,445 wins set by Dale Baird. When the Hall of Famer accomplished that significant milestone on August 7 at Saratoga with Stellar Tap, he had a legion of supporters rooting him on at Louisiana Downs.

 

Asmussen continues to fill the entry boxes at racetracks all over the country and has been a longtime supporter of the Bossier City racetrack. He won two editions of the Super Derby (G3) with Michael Lankford’s Limation at odds of 26-1 in 2018 and Rotation the following year for Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC.  Last September, Asmussen claimed both leading trainer and owner of the meet titles for the 2020 Thoroughbred season at Louisiana Downs.  He is currently fifth in the standings with his runners finishing in the money at a 46% clip.

“We have kept a large string at Louisiana Downs for several years,” said Asmussen by phone on Sunday. “They have excellent track surfaces, which help all of our horses as they train and  progress in their racing careers.”

Asmussen also gave credit to longtime assistant Mitch Dennison, who oversees the Louisiana string and jockey Joel Dominguez, who has been his first-call rider here in 2020 and 2021.

“Mitch and Joel are two great examples of why we were able to celebrate in setting the record,” he added. “Each of the 9,446 wins were achieved by the effort of each of our employees and the passion they share for racing. I am so blessed to be in this position and share it with every member of our team.”

When the Evangeline Training Center closed three years ago, it was Louisiana Downs that stepped up with an opportunity to stable and train in Shreveport.

“Louisiana Downs has been our hub for this region for three years,” said Dennison. “Steve believes in having each horse being productive at their class level. So, in addition to our success here this meet, we are able to train and ship horses where they fit.”

Dennison shared that his boss sent a heartfelt text thanking his assistants for their hardwork and how much he appreciated their role in the record-setting milestone.

“The significance of this accomplishment is amazing,” added Dennison. “Steve has been an incredible mentor to so many of us as well as a good human being and family man. He continues to instill that have the same care and expectations to the claiming horses as the graded stakes runners. His attention to detail is unsurpassed.”

“On behalf of the entire team at Louisiana Downs, we congratulate Steve for this incredible achievement,” said David Heitzmann, Director of Racing. “We appreciate his continued support of our racetrack and the standard he continues to set in our industry.”

Nominations Closed for Louisiana Cup Day on Saturday, August 21

Quality Louisiana-bred horses will take center stage on Saturday, August 21 when Louisiana Downs presents Louisiana Cup Day.  Post time will be 2:45 pm (CT) for the annual event that will include six $50,000 main track and turf stakes.

 

Nominations are closed with strong interest from trainers including Joey Foster, Shane Wilson, Ron Faucheaux, Allen Landry, Victor Arceneaux as well as Steve Asmussen.  The draw for Cup Day will take place on Saturday, August 14.

 

Much more to come on the stakes as well as special events for Louisiana Cup Day.  The six Louisiana Cup Day Stakes are as follows:

                                   

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile                    2 YO LA-Bred                        Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies          2 YO Fillies LA-Bred             Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Filly & Mare Sprint  3 YO & Up F&M, LA-Bred  Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint                        3 YO & Up LA-Bred              Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Turf Classic              3 YO & Up LA-Bred              1 1/16 miles (T)

$50,000 Louisiana Distaff                              3 YO & Up F & M LA-Bred  1 1/16 miles (T)

 

 

Registration Still Open for the Annual Charity Golf Tournament

Louisiana Downs will host its annual Charity Golf Tournament at Northwood HillsGolf Club in Shreveport, Louisiana on Wednesday September 1.The event will benefit The Winner’s Circle Church and Chaplain Jimmy Sistrunk for his many programs to assist the Louisiana Downs racing community and backstretch workers.

 

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 Super Derby t-shirt/cap. Trophies will be presented to the first, second and third-place teams.

 

The deadline to enter is Wednesday, August 25th. Attendees can register in person in the Louisiana Downs Racing office, or by mail. Checks should be payable to The Backside Benevolence Fund and mailed to:  Jennifer Sokol, Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, 8000 East Texas Street, Bossier City, Louisiana, 71111.  For further information, please contact Jennifer Sokol at (318) 741-2512 or (318) 573-5830.

 

 

Louisiana Downs Live Racing Schedule

Live racing takes place Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until the conclusion of the live season on Tuesday, September 21. For more information on the 84-day racing season and special events, visit https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-louisiana-downs/racing.

 

Jockeys Support PDJF Saturday

Jockeys across the country will join in a show of support for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund Saturday. At some 25 racetracks, riders will wear armbands and participate in fund-raising activities raise funds for the PDJF and raise awareness of National Disability Independence Day, which marks the 31st anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The PDJF is a 501(c)(3) public charity that provides financial assistance to approximately 60 former jockeys who have suffered catastrophic on-track injuries.

Racetracks, along with their jockey colonies, participating in the promotion this Saturday (unless otherwise noted) include: Arizona Downs (Monday, 8/2); Arlington Park; Canterbury Park (Sunday, 8/1), Colonial Downs Racetrack (Monday, 8/2); Delaware Park; Del Mar Thoroughbred Club; Delta Downs, Ellis Park, Emerald Downs; Evangeline Downs, Fan Duel Sports Book and Horse Racing (formerly Fairmount Park); Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack (Tuesday, 8/3); Golden Gate Fields; Gulfstream Park Racing and Casino; Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races; Indiana Grand Racing and Casino (Thursday, 7/29); Los Alamitos Race Course; Monmouth Park; Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort; Penn National (Friday, 7/30), Pimlico Race Course; Prairie Meadows; Ruidoso Downs; Sam Houston Race Park; and Saratoga Race Course.

STEVE ASMUSSEN COUNTDOWN TO BECOMING THE WINNINGEST ALL-TIME TRAINER IS WATCHED CLOSELY AT LOUISIANA DOWNS

Jockey Joel Dominguez Hopes He is Part of the Historic Event

 

Bossier City, LA – It’s hard to find a bigger story these days than the impending record-breaking feat of Hall of Fame conditioner Steve Asmussen who is poised to surpass Dale  Baird’s record of 9,445 career wins.

 

Racing fans know Asmussen’s tremendous accomplishments at all the major events in North America and beyond, but he has also made a lasting impact at smaller racetracks, and in boosting the careers of young jockeys.

 

Such is the case of Joel Dominguez, who is currently riding first call for Asmussen at Louisiana Downs.

 

Now in his fifth year at the Bossier City racetrack, Dominguez earned his first leading rider title last year at Louisiana Downs and currently tops the rider standings in the 2021 Thoroughbred meet. The 30-year-old native of Durango, Mexico galloped for Asmussen in Kentucky when he first came to the United States.

 

“When I was in Kentucky, I worked for Steve and he began to trust me galloping some of his top horses,” said Dominguez. “I remember the first time I worked Rachel Alexandra. That was very special and gave me so much confidence!”

 

Riding for Asmussen, who was both leading trainer and owner last year at Louisiana Downs, has been a privilege for Dominguez. He appreciates the quality of their pedigrees and Asmussen’s consummate preparation for each start.

 

“They are all well-trained,” he explained. “Steve has a mind like a computer; he is really smart and knows each horse. I have learned so much from him!”

 

While veterans Mike Smith, Stewart Elliott, Jose Ortiz, Joel Rosario and Ricardo Santana, Jr., are in the winner’s circle for the heralded graded stakes victories, Asmussen has played a pivotal role in developing the careers of up and coming Thoroughbred jockeys.

 

With between one and three Asmussen runners entered daily at Louisiana Downs, Dominguez certainly hopes he will ride the tying or even better, the mount who surpasses Dale Baird’s record.

 

“I would really like to do that,” acknowledged Dominguez. “But even if it does not happen here, it means so much that he has chosen me to ride for him. I am excited for Steve and really proud to be part of his team.”

 

 

Louisiana Cup Day Set for Saturday, August 21

Quality Louisiana-bred horses will take center stage on Saturday, August 21 when Louisiana Downs presents Louisiana Cup Day.  Post time will be 2:45 pm (CT) for the annual event that will include six $50,000 main track and turf stakes.

 

Live racing takes place Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until the conclusion of the live season on Tuesday, September 21. For more information on the 84-day racing season and special events, visit https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-louisiana-downs/racing.

 

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.

 

LOUISIANA DOWNS ANNOUNCES THAT LOUISIANA CUP DAY WILL TAKE PLACE ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 21

Six Black-Type Stakes Offered for Louisiana-Breds

 

Bossier City, LA – Quality Louisiana-bred horses will take center stage on Saturday, August 21 when Louisiana Downs presents Louisiana Cup Day.  Post time will be 2:45 pm (CT) for the annual event that will include main track and turf stakes.

 

Louisiana Cup Day continues to be an excellent afternoon of racing for breeders, owners, trainers and jockeys with an esteemed list of past winners receiving recognition from the Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association (LTBA) when they announce their annual champions. Ivery Sisters’s Racing’s Monte Man, Tri-Star Racing’s Our Lost Love, Rodney Verret’s Laughingsaintssong, Barrone Farms LLC’s Is Too and Tin Roof Farms LLC’s Snowball are just a few of the Louisiana Cup Day stakes winners who have been honored by the LTBA.

 

“Louisiana Cup Day is a great day for the breeders in our state and fans at Louisiana Downs to see some of the top Thoroughbreds in Louisiana,” said David Heitzmann, Director of  Racing. “The day would not be possible without the support of Ed Fenasci, Executive Director of the HBPA and Roger Heitzmann, Executive Director of the LTBA. We look forward to presenting an excellent card on August 21.”

 

The six Louisiana Cup Day Stakes are as follows:

                                   

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile                    2 YO LA-Bred                        Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies          2 YO Fillies LA-Bred             Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Filly & Mare Sprint  3 YO & Up F&M, LA-Bred  Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Sprint                        3 YO & Up LA-Bred              Six furlongs

$50,000 Louisiana Cup Turf Classic              3 YO & Up LA-Bred              1 1/16 miles (T)

$50,000 Louisiana Distaff                              3 YO & Up F & M LA-Bred  1 1/16 miles (T)

 

Nominations for Louisiana Cup Day will close on Saturday, August 7. Contact David Heitzmann at dheitzmann@caesars.com or by calling (318) 741-2511.

 

Scholarship Drawings Offered on Louisiana Cup Day

The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association will award two (2) scholarships, each valued at $1,000 on Louisiana Cup Day.

 

The drawings will take place between the fourth and fifth races. Students must register in person between 1:45 p.m. and 2:45 p.m.at the designated registration booth.

The requirements for the scholarship are as follows:

 

Must be a college student enrolled full-time for Fall 2021.

Must be in good standing with the college or university.

Must be present at the drawing location to win.

Must have university ID number or Social Security number.

The scholarship will be deposited directly into the student’s account at the college or university. The student is asked to know the name and address of the college that they are attending.

Handicapping Preview Show Set for Saturday, August 21

Louisiana Downs track announcer John McGary and regional racing publicist Martha Claussen will team up for a pre-race handicapping preview at 1:30 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.

 

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.

 

LOYAL OWNERS KEEP TRAINER SHANE WILSON ON TOP AT LOUISIANA DOWNS

Solid Meet for the Haughton, Louisiana Horseman

 

Bossier City, LA –Some might think that praising the importance of owners in horseracing is a standard catchphrase, but not to trainer Shane Wilson. The current leading trainer at Louisiana Downs took a few minutes after a hot and sultry afternoon card to talk about how his owners sustained him through the challenges of 2020 and put him on top this season in the 2021 meet.

 

“Many horsemen struggled last year during the (COVID-19) pandemic,” explained Wilson. “Sitting out for six months was a hardship on trainers, but I’m blessed with great clients who supported us. Thankfully, we were able to keep our whole stable intact.”

 

Several clients, including Wayne T. Davis, Joe Hackler and David Fontenot have been with Wilsonfor over 14 years.

 

“I began training in 1997 and am fortunate to have some loyal owners who trust me and love to see their horses run,” he added. “From the stakes company as well as the claiming level, with the support of my owners, we continue to be competitive.”

 

This is the second year in a row that Wilson set up shop at the Bossier City racetrack. He does not hesitate when asked about his allegiance to Louisiana Downs.

 

“David Heitzmann (Louisiana Downs Director of Racing) communicated with the horsemen through the shutdown in 2020,” said Wilson. “He was the first to set a plan and give us a projected opening date.”

Louisiana Downs was able to open their 84-day meet on its regular (Kentucky Derby) opening date this year,  and Wilson has been pleased with way the season has progressed.

“The track surfaces are very good, and they have made some improvements to the paddock and other areas of the complex. Having Camel and Ostrich Racing (on May 30) and these Family Sundays has brought in new fans. Promotions are part of it, but to me, they are working hard to sell horseracing as their core product.”

Wilson worked summers at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs, starting when he was 15 mucking stalls and hot walking for trainer Jack Van Berg. His brief foray to college did not last as he realized that he wanted to pursue a career in racing. He served as assistant to Sam David for seven years before going out on his own.

Aside from his racing ties, Wilson has another notable connection to Harrah’s Louisiana Downs. He met his wife, Becky, the daughter of horseman Jim O’Brien, here. The couple has two sons. Peyton is 20 years-old and his brother, Connor, 17, both help their dad out when they are not inschool.

His stable star is the multiple-stakes winning Mocito Rojo, a 7-year-old son of Mutadda. Wilson claimed the Kentucky-bred for owner Wayne T. Davis for $10,000 in a December 2016 maiden race at Delta Downs. He has amassed a record of 20 wins from 37 starts and earnings of $882,863. In 2019, Mocito Rojo won the Steve Sexton Mile Stakes (G3) at Lone Star Park and the Lukas Classic Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs. He has won back-to-back races this meet at Louisiana Downs.

“He’s an amazing animal,” said Wilson. “I like to say he keeps winning despite his trainer.”

But the truth is Wilson has not shied away from changing things up for the intrepid runner.

“He got a little lackluster in his route races, so I shortened him to six furlongs this year (on May 18),” said Wilson.

He won that sprint in 1:09.78 and returned on June 6, taking on four rivals in a seven furlong allowance optional claimer, in which he won in 1:21.70. The speedy Kentucky-bred just missed breaking the track record of 1:21.60 set on July 4, 1984.

“I told (jockey) Jose Guerrero to really let him go,” recalled Wilson. “I felt adding a track-record setting performance might help his stud career. When Jose saw the final time, he looked at me and said, “I thought you were kidding!”

Track record aside, Wilson has true admiration for Mocito Rojo, who will hopefully surpass the  million dollar earnings mark in his career.

“I have watched every one of his 37 races,” admitted Wilson. “He was so little and skinny as a 3-year-old. This $10,000 claimer has taken us places we’ve never gone!”

Wilson will send both Mocito Rojo and 3-year-old Rightandjust to the Iowa Festival of Racing Friday, July 2 and Saturday, July 3 at Prairie Meadows. Rojo is nominated to the $100,000 Iowa Sprint and Rightandjust, a colt by Awesome Again, also owned by Davis, will point to the $250,000 Iowa Derby.

Wilson turned 50 this year and came to an interesting revelation on his training objectives.

“When I was younger, it was all about winning,” he stated. “Now I enjoy the mornings when I can watch them train and really learn more about each of their personalities. Figuring out the puzzlefor each horse at different levels keeps it fun !”

 

Louisiana Downs Trainer, Jockey and Owner Standings

As of June 15, Shane Wilson leads his fellow conditioners with 16 wins from 52 starts. Joe Duhon, Joey Foster and Karl Broberg are tied for second place with 12 wins each. Last year’s winning trainer Steve Asmussen, follows closely with 11 victories since the meet began on Saturday, May 1.

 

2020 leading rider Joel Dominguez is on top of the standings with 31 wins. Emanuel Nieves, who is also having an excellent meet, is in second place with 27 trips to the winner’s circle, followed by Jose Guerrero (22) and Carlos Lozada (20).

 

Wayne T. Davis is the current leading owner with 12 victories from his 27 starters. Dream Walkin Farms, Inc. and End Zone Athletics, Inc. are tied for second with seven wins each and Steve Asmussen has won six races.

 

Family Fun Day

Louisiana Downs is proud to host Family Fun Day, a family friendly event each Sunday from Noon -5:00 pm. Admission is free and in addition to the live Thoroughbred races, fans can enjoy delicacies from the best Food Trucks in the Bossier City/Shreveport Metroplex with family games and entertainment offered throughout the afternoon. Family Fun Day will be offered each Sunday through September 19.

 

Louisiana Downs Race Dates and Post Times

Live racing will be conducted Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday at 2:45 pm (Central)until the conclusion of the 2021 live season on Tuesday, September 21. For more information on the 84-day racing season and special events, visit https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-louisiana-downs/racing.

Matt Vance Named Executive VP Of Racing At Remington, Lone Star

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Matt Vance

Officials with Global Gaming Solutions recently announced Matt Vance has been named executive vice president of racing for Remington Park in Oklahoma City and Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Skip Seeley, Global Gaming Solutions CEO, said Vance’s thorough knowledge of the horse industry and his passion for working collaboratively with horsemen, jockeys, racing fans and employees played an instrumental role in this decision.

“For several years, Matt has overseen racing operations at Remington Park and over the past couple years he has served in an advisory role at Lone Star Park. His leadership and commitment to horse racing helped us navigate a very trying time during the pandemic at both tracks. He led the 2020 Quarter Horse Season through uncharted territory that enabled racing to continue throughout the pandemic. He then used that experience to guide health and safety protocols and operations in Grand Prairie when its season opened.”

Seeley noted that Vance also received the 2020 Gordon Crone Special Achievement Award from the American Quarter Horse Association for his work during the pandemic.

As executive vice president for both tracks, he will oversee all mutuels/simulcasting, operations, track maintenance and racing operations.

“It is an honor to be able to live my passion for horse racing every day and to do that alongside some of the best horsemen, jockeys and fans in the sport,” said Vance. “As we build on our current successes, which include purse increases at both tracks, I look forward to working with our committed employees in both states to enhance our horsemen and patron experience.”

Vance has served as vice president of racing operations at Remington Park since 2015. He has worked in the racing industry for over 35 years, starting with Louisiana Downs in 1986 then to Remington Park from 1988-1997. He moved to other tracks for six years and eventually returned to Remington Park in 2003 for the construction of the casino, and the transition to new ownership in Global Gaming Solutions in 2010. During his tenure, Vance has played a key role on the leadership team that has helped the track soar in quality and popularity in recent years.

For more information about Remington Park, visit https://www.remingtonpark.com/. To learn more about Lone Star Park, go to https://www.lonestarpark.com/.