Here’s the Spider scares away the competition in Queen City Oaks (2024)

Here’s the Spider scares away the competition in Queen City Oaks (1)

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Here’s the Spider won her second Best of Ohio stakes, taking Friday’s Queen City Oaks at Belterra.

Here's the Spider scored her second victory on a Best of Ohio card, pulling away in the late stages for a 1 1/4-length victory in the $100,000 Best of Ohio Norm Barron Queen City Oaks for 3-year-old fillies on Friday atBelterraPark. The stakes program provided a mix of favored and longshot winners for a variety of connections, as major outfits found mixed results on the card.

The Best of Ohio has evolved into a series of showcases throughout the year at all three of the state’s Thoroughbred tracks to promote the Ohio racing and breeding programs. The series began with five $100,000 stakes atBelterraon Friday, and will be followed by a summer program at Thistledown, and the annual fall showcase program at Mahoning Valley.

Here's the Spider, trained by Ed Fernandez for Jack Cannon, has now won four of six career starts, and is unbeaten in her home state of Ohio; her losses came when fifth in an allowance in Indiana, and seventh in the Grade 2 Golden Rod at Churchill Downs last year. She won the John W.GalbreathMemorial Stakes on last October's Best of Ohio card at Mahoning Valley.

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On Friday, post-time favorite Here'sthe Spider ($5.60) was fifth of seven after the opening six furlongs of the Queen City Oaks. She was only about 2 1/2 lengths back in a relatively close group as Princess Ellie led through a leisurely 1:13.45. John McKee angled Here'sthe Spider out in the stretch, and the filly began steadily making up ground onWork'nOn a Buzz, who had inherited the lead after tracking in third. Here's the Spider caught her and cleared in the final yards for the victory, finishing the 1 1/16 miles on a fast main track in 1:48.12.

Work'nOna Buzz, the longest shot on the board, was a clear second, 2 1/4 lengths clear ofMinestress. They were followed, in order, by Kiss Me Quick, Princess Ellie, second choice Officially Yours who could not keep up as the field quickened, and Derby Day Kiss.

While Here's the Spider scored a stakes win as the favorite in the first stakes race of the day, one race later, Henry Mac ($20) sprang the upset in the $100,000 Best of Ohio SydneyGendelmanStakes for older horses on the turf, powering home to win by 2 3/4 lengths.

A three-pronged entry led by 2023 Ohio-bred horse of the year Fair and Square was the morning-line favorite, but didn't factor in the final placings, with Silence finishing fifth, Tantrum finishing sixth, and Fair and Square seventh in a rare appearance on turf.

Henry Mac, with JoseBrachoin the irons for trainer JeffRadosevich, led home Brilliant Journey, who returned $11 in the place spot; post-time favorite Laugh a Lot; and Manga Man, the longest shot on the board.

Henry Mac races for Samuel Klein, Jr., LLC, and EnjoyThe Ride Stable. Although this was his first career stakes victory, he put together a solid campaign in 2023, winning seven times and finishing second twice in his nine starts, and earning recognition as Ohio's claimer of the year.

The longshot parade continued as HipHipHooray ($43.80) upset the $100,000 Best of OhioBabst/Palacios Memorial Stakes for older sprinters.

HipHipHooray and Fernando Salazar Becerra came up on the outside of second choiceStartdfromdabottomand Sophie Doyle on the far turn, and wore that one down in a sustained drive to win by a length at the wire. The top two appeared to brush in upper stretch, but a claim of foul by Doyle against the winner was disallowed.

HipHipHooray, who is trained by Robert Gorham for Mast Thoroughbreds, scored his first stakes victory; he had been third in theBabst/Palacios Memorial last year.

McKee helped out the chalk players by piloting another favored filly to a victory later in the card, as Buckeye Princess ($4.60) won the $100,000 Best of Ohio Diana Stakes for fillies andmares, the sister race to theBabst/Palacios. McKee finished the stakes program as the only jockey or trainer with more than one winner.

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This Maccabee Farm homebred, trained by Tom Drury, Jr., scored her fifth win from six career starts. She won her first four career outings in 2022-23, but had finished third in the First Lady Stakes last November at Mahoning Valley in her stakes debut.

Buckeye Princess powered clear of second choice and early pacesetter SweetShildO Mine for an easy 3 1/4-length victory. The time for the six furlongs was 1:10.09, faster than the males ran in the preceding race, going in 1:11.52.

While the Fair and Square-led entry came up short earlier in the day, the powerful partnership of leading Ohio trainer Tim Hamm's Blazing Meadows Farm and Kentucky-basedWinStarFarm came up with a win with another favored three-pronged entry to close out the stakes program.Spellcast($3.40) won the $100,000 Best of Ohio Green Carpet Stakes for 3-year-olds on the turf, besting This Time by three-quarters of a length while handled extremely confidently by Rocco Bowen.

Stablemate Shadowy was third, while the third part of the entry, Fact Not Fiction, was ninth after leading early.

Spellcastgot back in the win column in the Green Carpet. The gelding won his first two starts last year, including the Hoover Stakes. Since then, he's been second in the Best of Ohio Cleveland Kindergarten, fifth in the Howard B. Noonan Stakes to start this season off an eight-month layoff, and an improving second in the Daryl E. Parker MemorialTall Stack Stakes last month.

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Here’s the Spider scares away the competition in Queen City Oaks (2024)
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