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Saturday Main Event Brings Out Top Pacers At Cal Expo
Friday, September 16, 2011 - by Mark Ratzky, Publicity -- Cal Expo

Haggin Oaks, who looked great posting an upset at this top level last week in her first start since June; and Ivegotwhatuneed, the beaten favorite in that affair who had to settle for a fourth-place finish, head the cast for the $4,500 Winners-over Pace at Cal Expo Saturday night (September 17).
 
Haggin Oaks is a 5-year-old daughter of Hi Ho Silverheels who is owned by the Shari Burns, Ferris Funk and Gerald Cimini and is reined and trained by James Kennedy.  A multiple stakes victress, she has $78,000 in earnings and a 1:53.2 mark that was set here earlier in the season.
 
Sent off at 6-1 in the most recent gathering at this level, the dark-hued performer left into a pocket trip behind Got The Giggles and tracked that one for three-quarters.  Kennedy moved Haggin Oaks to command in the stretch and drew off by four lengths in a powerful return to the races.
 
Ivegotwhatuneed found himself with too much work to do from the back in that affair and had to settle for a fourth-place finish as the odds-on choice.  Bob Johnson trains the son of Givemewhatineed and also co-owns with Marty Garey while Lemoyne Svendsen will handle the lines.
 
Ivegotwhatuneed was a dominating winner on opening week with Rich Wojcio guiding, then failed to make an impact last time, comes into the weekend with $277,000 in his account and a 1:52 career standard that was established two years ago.  The hard-hitting son of Givemewhatineed has gone some huge miles over the Cal Expo layout over the last couple of seasons and could easily apologize in this spot.
 
Got The Giggles loves to win races and will do her work from the outside post in the field of six.  Robley Johnson owns and trains this 10-year-old daughter of Grinfromeartoear and Luke Plano will be at the controls.  She has eight wins this season, the most reason coming in a coast-to-coaster with an easier group two weeks ago in a 1:54.3 performance.
 
Looking for an upset this weekend are Western So from the David Merrick barn, who has the benefit of the inside slot; Stanza for Steve Wiseman; and Myra’s Hiho, who gives the Johnson shedrow two looks at the outcome.
 
 
Stidham's Trotter Makes Super Return At Cal Expo
 
Rocky Stidham wasn’t able to drive Putoneonnetformom when he won last week’s dance at the head of the class for the trotting set at Cal Expo, but James Kennedy did a great job deputizing for the conditioner to post the mild upset over Alpine Hawk and Franks Best.
 
“I had hip surgery on August 3, and the recovery is going well,” related Stidham, who has recorded 1,656 victories as a driver and 1,330 as a trainer while having his physical issues over the last few years.  “It looks like it will be another two months before I can get back in the sulky.”
 
Putoneonnetformom, who carries the banner of his breeders Jeff, Gerald and Diane Cimini, was making his first start since June, while favorites Alpine Hawk and Franks Best had the benefit of an outing at this meeting.  As it turned out, the trotter’s 12-length romp in a qualifier obviously had him nice and tight for the return to the wars.
 
“Putoneonnetformom has come back really well,” informed Stidham, who had told Kennedy before the race that the 7-year-old probably wasn’t ready for his best effort.  It turned out he didn’t have to be in peak form to get the job done, as he did the track-and-attack to perfection in the 1:59 tour.
 
Stidham is also looking forward to sending out another nice trotter in Shelby County, who has returned from the East Coast, and has high hopes for a 2-year-old pacing filly who is showing some promise. He’s also hoping to hop back into that sulky for some evening action before too long.
 
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Cal Expo is now offering a reduced 15 percent takeout rate on Saturday for both Pick 4’s. In addition, the late Pick 4 will come with a $15,000-guaranteed pool and there will be a 0% takeout on successful Late Pick 4 tickets made on track or at Twinspires.com.
 
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Saturday night’s out-of-state action will feature a simulcast of the Super Night program from Balmoral Park in Illinois.  Cal Expo will be taking races 5 through 14 on this outstanding card, with the first simulcast set for 6:18 Pacific Time.  There is a 15K guarantee on the Pick Five starting with race 5; a 25K guarantee on the Pick Four starting on race 10; and a 25K guarantee on the Hi-Five on race 14.  There will be 15 Cal Expo races on Saturday and the headliner is set as the third event.
 
The trotters and pacers will be in action at Cal Expo on Friday and Saturday nights until October 6, when the schedule expands to Thursday, Friday and Saturday programs.  Post-time on Friday (September 16) & Saturday (September 17) at 6:00 p.m. (PDT).  On Friday, Cal Expo offers Happy Hour between 6:00-8:30 p.m., where $2 Beer, $2 Wine & $2 Buffalo Wings an order is offered.  On Saturday, its Dollar Night, on which hot-dogs; beer, soda, and wine will be sold for one dollar from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m.