A sub-1:10 clocking for six furlongs is quick. A sub-1:09 clocking is blistering. A sub-1:08 clocking is, well, almost unheard of, but one was recorded the evening of March 30 at Turfway Park.
In the eighth-race feature, an allowance/optional claiming event for 3-year-olds and up, Kendall Hansen's Lil Red Flyer, claimed for $25,000 from his previous start, led most of the way and won by 2 3/4 lengths on a fast track in 1:07.97, a new record for six furlongs at the Northern Kentucky track.
The previous track record of 1:08 1/5 was co-held by Appealing Skier (1996), and Partner's Hero (1998).
To put things in perspective, the Breeders' Cup record for six furlongs is 1:07.77, recorded by Kona Gold at Churchill Downs in 2000.
Lil Red Flyer, with leading rider Dean Sarvis aboard for trainer Lars Becdelamotte, sat in second behind Just Parkin through an opening quarter-mile in :21.43 and took over thereafter. The 4-year-old Kentucky-bred gelding by Groovy clicked off a half-mile in :43.39, and five furlongs in :55.05 enroute to his victory over Elite Mercedes and Just Parkin.
The winner paid $10.80.
The Turfway racing surface was muddy but quite quick March 26, the day of the Lane's End Stakes (gr. I), when a two six-furlong stakes were timed in 1:09 and change. Though the inside of the track appeared dry March 30, the outside portion appeared to retain moisture. Earlier on the card, 1:10-and-change clockings for six furlongs in several one-mile races for bottom-level claimers were recorded.