Brigader Favored in West Virginia Classic

Brigader, a 3-year-old gelding making his first start against older horses, is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the $300,000 West Virginia Breeders' Classic Saturday at Charles Town Races.

A field of 10 was entered for the 1 1/8-mile Classic, the headline event among eight stakes set for the 18th annual series for West Virginia breds.

Brigader, who starts from the extreme outside post position with Anthony Mawing taking the call for the first time, is also making his first career start beyond seven furlongs for trainer Frankie Martinez. All 10 of his career starts have come at Charles Town.

He woke up July 24 with a three-length gate-to-wire victory in the restricted Robert G. Leavitt Memorial Handicap. He followed that with a second-place finish, a half-length behind Shekatoo, in the restricted Millard Harrell Memorial. Denise Martinez owns the offspring of Gneiss, who has three wins and three seconds with earnings of $101,352 to his credit.

Five-year-old Ginger Ale, 7-2 on the morning line, captured a seven-furlong tune-up for Saturday's race for trainer James Casey.

The first two finishers in last year's race, Cape Power and Creative's Dream, return. Cape Power has raced only twice since last year's victory, finishing eighth both times while by a combined 43 lengths. Creative's Dream is winless in four starts this year.

An intriguing prospect is the talented by fragile A Huevo, a Michael Dickinson reclamation project. The 8-year-old gelding has only eight career starts. Primarily a sprinter, A Huevo upset Shake You Down in the 1993 DeFrancis Dash (gr. I) in November. He has started only once since the DeFrancis, finishing off the board in the Forego Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Sept. 5.

A Huevo is making his first start at Charles Town since setting a track record there in 1999 in the West Virginia Breeders' Cup Stakes. Later disqualified for a positive post-race clenbuterol finding, he suffered a suspensory injury and four chips in his knees during the race, according to Dickinson. He suffered lameness a couple of times while on the comeback trail. It was nearly four years before he was able to make it back.

In the $250,000 West Virginia Cavada Breeders' Classic for state-bred fillies and mares, Miss Roberson, a winner of five straight after running for a $2,500 claiming tag, is the 9-5 morning line choice. Fancy Buckles, second in the Cavada last year, could provide the biggest obstacle.

$300,000 West Virginia Breeders' Classic, West Virginia breds, 3 & up, 1 1/8 miles
Charles Town - October 9th, 2004 - Race 7
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Longfield Spud, Alvaro Jawny, 122, 10/1
2. Ginger Ale, J. D. Acosta, 122, 7/2
3. Tienneman Square, Larry C. Reynolds, 122, 4/1
4. Creative's Dream, Nilo Perez, 122, 10/1
5. Cape Power, Jesus Sanchez, 122, 15/1
6. Straight Star, Travis L. Dunkelberger, 122, 7/2
7. Spindini, Dwayne A. Grafton, 116, 10/1
8. Adams Tribe, Kendrick Carmouche, 122, 15/1
9. A Huevo, Ramon A. Dominguez, 122, 10/1
10. Brigader, Anthony Mawing, 116, 2/1

$250,000 Jefferson Security Bank "Cavada" West Virginia Breeders' Classic, West Virginia-bred fillies & mares, 3 & up
1. Light Reflections, Alcibiades C. Cortez, 122, 8/1
2. Fancy Buckles, Larry C. Reynolds, 122, 4/1
3. Simon Slew, Mathew Carroll McGowan, 122, 15/1
4. Sailor's Wave, Oscar Flores, 122, 10/1
5. Love for Lucy, David Cora, 122, 15/1
6. Shesanothergrump, Anthony Mawing, 122, 10/1
7. Ketch a Hello, Dale Whittaker, 122, 10/1
8. Miss Roberson, Travis L. Dunkelberger, 122, 9/5
9. Marthamountainmama, Kendrick Carmouche, 122, 15/1
10. Original Gold, Ramon A. Dominguez, 122, 4/1