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Thursday, April 25th, 2013 -Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness

Outrider Billy Don Wainscott and his trusted steed Tony show the way in the post parades here each night, making sure things go in orderly fashion and helping out when needed by a driver.

Wainscott, a former jockey, has been the outrider here for some 11 years, while quarter horse Tony has been his partner for the last five.

“I actually broke Tony as a yearling and the plan was for him to be in match races, but they decided against it and I ended up taking him,” Billy Don explained.
Wainscott, who retired from riding in 1996, is best know for piloting the storied mule Black Ruby. “I was aboard for three of her wins, and all of them turned out to be track records,” he related.

As for Tony, while his main job is as the outrider’s pony, he still gets a chance to do a little racing. For the last several years, he has traveled up to the Red Bluff Roundup Club Rodeo to compete in what is known as the Cowgirl Races. “They race 300 yards and his owner, Courtney Dagorret, has ridden him to three wins up there, including last weekend,” Wainscott noted.

When the meeting concludes here next month, Billy Don and Tony will hit the fair circuit while leading the parades to post for the thoroughbreds, quarter horses and mules. “It’s different than working with the trotters and pacers, and they all have their good points and bad.”


A $10,000 California Sire Stakes for the 3-year-old pacing colts will be featured at the Watch and Wager LLC meet at Cal Expo Saturday night, with Lebo Jones and Bit Player getting plenty of support.
A 14-race program is on tap, with the Sire Stakes going as the opener. The featured Trot is a $4,500 Open 2 event that brings together K D Amazin Spirit, Stars and Glides, Inside Broadway, Franks Best and D D’s Tiger.

Getting back to the stakes, Lebo Jones is a homebred son of Wicked Island and the Incredible Finale mare Credible Preciosa who races for Frank Nevarez, is conditioned by Gordie Graham and will once again have Scott Cisco at the controls.
The dark-hued pacer earned both his maiden diploma and a trophy when looped his rivals to capture the most recent added-money event for this group two weeks ago. He won going away by a length and a quarter that evening, then came back last weekend to finish third in an Open 3 event behind A Real Miracle and the sharp filly Strings.

Bit Player is a multiple stakes victor and has to be given plenty of respect. A Desomer Stables homered, he is by Moxie out of the Leading Edge mare Linear and is conditioned by Vickie Desomer with Steve Wiseman at the helm.

The dark-hued gelding recorded his most recent added-money decision on March 30. He raced up close and personal in that affair, opened up on his rivals turning for home and came to the wire with two and a half-lengths to spare while equaling his lifetime standard with the 1:56 3/5 clocking.

Completing the field are Daring Do with Steve Desomer guiding; Me Tarzan, Tim Maier; Winonefordoug for Richard Bertrand; Hi Ho Disguise with Luke Plano doing the honors; and Kablooie, who leaves from the outside post with Bruce Clarke in the sulky.

There are three wagers offered here at Cal Expo with a reduced 16 percent takeout rate and a carryover provision. They are the 50-cent Pick 5 that begins on the third race; the $1 Pick 4 on the penultimate four races on the evening with a $20,000-guaranteed pool on Fridays and a $25,000-guaranteed pool on Saturdays; and the 10-cent High 5 on the finale.