Six stakes races for claiming horses will mark the inaugural, and possibly only, Winter Festival of Racing this weekend at Playfair Race Course.
Three of the $10,000 added sprints will highlight today’s program. Three others have been scheduled for Sunday. The races are limited to horses that have started at least four times during what promises to be the only winter season in track history.
The 36-day meet will conclude next weekend.
Post time for 10-race programs today and Sunday will be 1 p.m. Today’s card will be supplemented by simulcast betting on the $500,000 Florida Derby.
Today, colts and geldings will run the Playfair Course of about 6-1/2 furlongs in the $2,500 Claimer Supreme, fillies and mares will go 6 furlongs in the $2,500 Claimer Supremette and four-time winner Finnish Royalty will face Wake Up Sassy Boy and eight others at 6 furlongs in the $4,000 Claimer Supreme.
The $4,000 Claimer Supremette, the $5,000 Claimer Supreme and the $5,000 Claimer Supremette will be run Sunday. The first two will be run over the Playfair Course, the latter at six furlongs.
Jose Miranda’s grand slam home run in the eighth inning rallied Cal State Northridge past Gonzaga 5-2 Friday at the Pepsi-Johnny Quik Classic in Fresno, Calif.
Gonzaga took a 2-1 lead into the bottom of the eighth before Northridge loaded the bases on a pinch-hit single, an error, another single and a walk. Then, Matt Siwek relieved Matt Kearney on the mound and retired one batter before giving up Miranda’s slam.
Gonzaga (6-6-1) took a 1-0 lead in the fifth when Jeff Bowne doubled to drive in Travis Knight.
The Matadors (21-9-1) tied it in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI-double by Adam Kennedy.
The Zags went ahead again in the eighth when Rob Pearsall led off with a single, took second on Brendan Hare’s sacrifice bunt and scored on a single by Kevin Workman.
Gonzaga outhit Northridge 9-5 but committed three errors. The Matadors made none.
Kearney allowed four hits and three earned runs in seven-plus innings and took the loss, evening his record at 1-1.
Winner Benito Flores pitched a complete game for Northridge.
Trek Davis gave Community Colleges of Spokane a jump-start with a first-inning grand slam and the Sasquatch went on to defeat Treasure Valley 10-8 at Ontario, Ore.
Rudy Zarfas hit a two-run homer in the seventh and Jeff Vandemark added a two-run pinch double in the eighth as Spokane managed to keep its lead throughout despite a four-run eighth by Treasure Valley.
Adam Flohr, making his first start of the season, picked up his first victory. He struck out 10 batters and pitched into the seventh inning.