Thoroughbred trainer Ray Tracy Jr. awoke today knowing that some of his worries are behind him.
With Tracy in Sacred Heart Medical Center, undergoing tests for a bleeding ulcer, his Red Silver Hope raced to victory Saturday in the filly division of the All West Futurity at Playfair Race Course. In the process, she took the first step toward winning the $100,000 Playfair Challenge Series bonus.
Red Silver Hope made the pace against nine rival 2-year-olds and held on to win by half a length. Justanotherbigtime finished second, more than 2 lengths in front of Royal Senorita, the surprise 3-2 favorite. Royal Senorita is trained by Tracy’s brother Greg, Playfair’s 1993 champion.
Red Silver Hope notched her third victory in five starts by running 6 furlongs in 1:14-4/5 on a drying track rated good. Darrell Brinkerhoff, who has two previous victories in the colts and geldings division of the All West, was aboard. Red Silver Hope paid $8.40 to win. Owners Grace and James Schmitt of Corvallis, Mont., picked up $19,019 from a purse of $35,440, largest for the event since 1988.
Tracy, a member of one of Montana’s most prominent racing families, had just returned from a trip to Kentucky when he was stricken on Friday.
Saturday, when his horses were saddled by his father, Ray Tracy Sr., he also won the sixth race with Satusation. The two triumphs boosted him into a share of second place in the standings with nine wins.
Ten 2-year-old colts and geldings will run 6 furlongs in their division of the All West Futurity today, competing for the season’s largest purse, $38,812. Ray Tracy Jr.’s trainee Invest In Festin and Toughy’s Gold are expected to rule as lopsided favorites. All horses in both divisions passed through the Spokane Interstate Fair sales ring at last fall’s All West Sale.
Post time will be 1:30 p.m. as Playfair reaches the midpoint of its 50-day season.