The Sept. 28 death of Howard Bender, who along with his late wife, Sondra, was among the leading breeders in Maryland, came as a shock to the couple's long-time trainer, Larry Murray.
Maryland shipper London Lane, ignored at odds of 50-1, charged from the rear down the center of the track to land the $300,000 Colonial Turf Cup (gr. IIT) in a shocker June 22 at Colonial Downs.
Sondra Bender, a prominent Maryland breeder/owner, died Feb. 23 after a battle with uterine cancer. A resident of Bethesda, Md., she was 78. Her survivors include her husband, Howard, who operates Glade Valley Farm.
The 10-day Laurel Park summer meeting ended Aug. 21 with jockey Julian Pimentel, trainer Gary Capuano, and owner Sondra Bender capturing individual titles.
Sondra Bender's Promenade Girl spoiled the return to action of Round Pond in Sunday's $294,000 Molly Pitcher Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares on a sloppy track at Monmouth Park.
Runnin Cardinal Stable and C.E. Glasscock's Somethinaboutbetty took the lead early under jockey Mike Luzzi and was kept to her task to the wire as she galloped to victory in the $75,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship for registered state-bred 2-year-olds at Laurel Park Monday.
Sondra Bender's Promenade Girl trounced a field of 3-year-old Maryland-bred fillies in the opening day feature at Laurel Park, the $75,000 Twixt Stakes.
Maryland-bred Cruise Along had done most of her running and all of her winning on the turf, but a huge recent effort on the dirt has earned her a trip to New York to try for a graded stakes win in Saturday's $100,000 Affectionately Handicap (gr. III) at 1 1/16 miles for fillies and mares.
National riding leader Ramon Dominguez, who split time between Maryland and Delaware, had more trips to the winners' circle in Maryland than any other rider in the colony, winning 185 races at Pimlico and Laurel Park in 2003. Trainer Dale Capuano and owner Michael Gill again topped their divisions this year.
Trainer Lawrence Murray and Sondra Bender's Tam's Terms will be looking for a little redemption when he takes the gate for Saturday's $150,000 Knickerbocker Handicap (gr. IIT) at Belmont Park.
The team of owner Sondra Bender and trainer Larry Murray won its fifth stakes race of the year in Maryland as Cruise Along beat nine other Maryland-bred fillies and mares in the $75,000 All Brandy Stakes at Pimlico.
The rare summer stakes race on the grass in Maryland has attracted eleven entries for Saturday's $150,000 John D. Schapiro Memorial Breeders' Cup at Laurel Park, the only six figure race in the 22-day summer meet.
Sondra Bender's homebred Foufa's Warrior wore down his rivals Remind and favored Lismore Knight in the stretch to register a mild upset and a course record in the $250,000 Kent Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds on the turf Sunday at Delaware Park.
After one wild ride, jockey Horatio Karamanos and his mount, Tam's Terms, came on to win Saturday's $50,000 Da Hoss Stakes at Colonial Downs after appearing to be hopelessly beaten.
Full fields are expected when Colonial Downs opens its doors Friday. Colonial's 30-day meet runs through July 22nd on a Friday through Tuesday schedule with 1 p.m. post times on Saturday and Sunday and 5 p.m. post during the week. There is a special Thursday card on July 3.
Jockey Mario Pino captured the Maryland riding title with 227 winners at Pimlico and Laurel Park in 2002, his second one in the last four years. Dale Capuano earned the training championship, his fifth in the last six years, saddling 107 winners.
Sondra Bender's Foufa's Warrior added another prize to his owner's burgeoning collection of Maryland Jockey Club trophies with a hard fought victory in the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Championship Tuesday at Laurel.
Sondra Benders' Certantee made the jump from turf to dirt with a powerful score in the $150,000 John D. Schapiro Memorial Breeders' Cup Handicap Saturday at Laurel Park. The race was moved off the grass because of soggy conditions.
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