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Nov 18, 2005

Leading sprinters to meet at Laurel


Laural, MD (Sports Network) - For those thoroughbred racing fans who feel the need for speed, Laurel Park on Saturday will feature some of the fastest horses sill in training. A full field of 14 have been entered in Saturday's $300,000 Frank J. DeFrancis Memorial Dash.

The first four finishers in the Dave's Friend Stakes renew their rivalry in the six furlong race. The four horses were separated by just one length last month at Laurel Park.

Abbondanza, winner of the Dave's Friend, will start from post 12 with Enrique Jurado in the saddle. In his last four races he has one win and three third place finishes with four different jockeys. Owned by Germania Farms, the four-year-old has won six of 18 career starts for $319,398. Abbondanza, trained by Tim Tullock, was seventh in last year's DeFrancis after finishing 11th in the 2004 Breeders' Cup Sprint.

Forest Park was edged in the Dave's Friend Stakes as the favorite. He will break from post four with Mario Pino riding. In eight starts this year, Forest Park has five wins and three second place finishes. Pino's brother Michael trains for owner Daniel Ryan. Forest Park has earned $253,990 with eight career wins in 12 starts.

Dale's Prospect enters the DeFrancis Dash off a third place finish in the Dave's Friend. The four-year-old will be ridden by Ryan Fogelsonger from post six. Dale's Prospect is owned by Phillip Capuano and trained by Dale Capuano. The gelding has won seven of 18 career starts for $202,514.

The fourth place finisher in the Dave's Friend Stakes was Saay Mi Name. The five-year-old earlier won the Maryland Millions Sprint at Laurel Park and has earned $337,606 in his career. Saay Mi Name will start from the inside post with Christopher VanHassel aboard. He is trained by owner Wayne Bailey.

Completing the field for the DeFrancis Dash are Who's the Cowboy, Ministers Wild Cat, Tiger Heart, I'm the Tiger, Clever Electrician, Friendly Island, Wild Tale, Sensibly Chic, Gators N Bears and Elusive Jazz.

Gators N Bears has the highest career earnings of those entered. The five- year-old has winnings of more than $800,000 with ten wins in 31 starts. Last year he was a close fourth in the DeFrancis Dash. He will be ridden by Abel Castellano for owner-trainer Leo Nechamkin.

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