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Jan 27, 2012

Mr. Bowling hangs on to win Lecomte Stakes


New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) - Mr. Bowling, ridden by Robby Albarado, held off Z Dager Saturday to capture the $175,000 Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds Race Course. It was the three-year-old's first start in almost three months.

The mile and 70 yard event is the first of three stakes at the New Orleans track for Kentucky Derby probables. The $300,000 Risen Star Stakes follows on Saturday, February 25 and the $1 million Louisiana Derby concludes this section of the Derby Trail on Sunday, April 1.

Mr. Bowling, trained by Larry Jones, went off as the 7-2 second choice behind the 3-1 favored entry of Dan and Sheila and Z Dager. Shared Property, the 4-1 morning-line favorite, went off as the 5-1 third pick in the 13-horse field.

Setting the pace was Alexander Thegreat with Hero of Order to his outside. Running third was Hammers Terror along with Z Dager. Mr. Bowling quickly settled into fifth on the outside.

Owned by Brereton Jones, Mr. Bowling moved forward entering the far turn and was caught three wide around the final turn. Almost half the field was across the track at the top of the stretch.

Mr. Bowling was able to find room between horses as Z Dager and jockey Shave Sellers made a late surge. Albarado was able to get his horse to the wire first, posting a head victory over Z Dager with Shared Property another half- length back in third.

Completing the order of finish were Dan and Sheila, Hero of Order, Hammers Terror, Capetown Devil, Alexander Thegreat, Ted's Folly, Adena's Chance, Exfactor, Seven Lively Sins and Chalybeate Springs.

Mr. Bowling covered the distance in 1:43.49 on a fast Fair Grounds track.

"He has been training very well since he got here," said Jones recently. "We're very happy with him. Obviously, Mr. Bowling likes this track a lot, but we also want to think he's just getting better. He seems to be maturing more and more every day. He's a son of the young Gone West sire Istan whose horses are just getting to the races. I have several Istans in my barn, and they all look like they can run."

Mr. Bowling added $105,000 to his earnings which now stand at $201,048. The Lecomte was the colt's third win in five career starts and his first since taking the Dover Stakes at Delaware Park on October 8. He last raced on October 30 at Churchill Downs in the Iroquois Stakes when he finished third.

Mr. Bowling returned $9.20, $4.80 and $4.00. Z Dager paid $4.80 and $3.60, and Shared Property paid $3.80 to show.

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