- The Washington Times - Saturday, May 18, 2002

BALTIMORE War Emblem is the early 5-2 favorite for today's 127th Preakness after advance wagering yesterday.

Bettors disagreed with the morning line that made fourth-place Derby finisher Medaglia d'Oro the slight choice over War Emblem. Indeed, only one of six past Derby winners was the Preakness choice.

However, Medaglia d'Oro steadily slipped from 3-5 early to 7-2 after $335,087 was wagered nationally. Harlan's Holiday (9-2) and Booklet (5-1) were the only others rated less than 10-1. Derby runner-up Proud Citizen was a slight surprise at 11-1 followed by U S S Tinosa (13-1), Crimson Hero (17-1), Table Limit (24-1), Magic Weisner (24-1), Straight Gin (25-1), Equality (25-1), Easyfromthegitgo (30-1) and Menacing Dennis (35-1).

Chamrousse gets Black-Eyed

Chamrousse outdueled Shop Till You Drop for nearly the entire race to win the $200,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes yesterday before 12,493 at Pimlico Race Course.

The 3-year-old fillies met on the first turn and stayed within a length for most of the race before Chamrousse pulled away late for a 2¼-length victory. Jockey Jerry Bailey quickly took Chamrousse to the inside for a tactical advantage that forced Shop Till You Drop wide most of the race. Chamrousse ($3.20) covered 1⅛ miles in 1:51 3/5.

"When they gave us the fence we had to go for it," Chamrousse trainer Niall O'Callaghan said. "She's used to following horses and when the jockey asks her to go grab the bit and run. I think she wasn't quite sure what to do."

Said Bailey: "I thought I'd be three or four horses off the lead, but I wasn't going to take away anything from her running style. I thought she would run better with a target."

Earlier, Summer Colony regained the lead in the final yards to edge Dancethruthedawn by a nose in the $150,000 Pimlico Breeders' Cup Staff. Summer Colony ($5.40) surged past Netherland at the top of the stretch, then lost the lead by a head to Dancethruthedawn at the 16th pole before rallying. Summer Colony covered 1 1/16 miles in 1:42 4/5 under jockey John Velasquez.

"She's one of the best fillies in the country," Summer Colony trainer Mark Hennig said. "She was a little wide on the first turn, but Johnny noticed the rail has been good and moved her inside."

A record $9.2 million was wagered on the card, $2 million more than last year.

The long road

Menacing Dennis' three-stop flight from San Francisco to New York before vanning five hours to Pimlico on Monday was nothing compared to assistant trainer Sal Muniz's trip. The former Maryland jockey is afraid to fly and drove cross country.

"From Kentucky east, I literally was in the eye of a storm hour after hour,'' Muniz said.

The next trip will be easier, though. Muniz is headed to Monmouth Park in Oceanside, N.J.

Preakness under card

The $200,000 Dixie Handicap highlights the 12-race Preakness under card that includes four stakes races. The $200,000 Maryland Breeders' Cup Handicap, $125,000 Gallorette Handicap and $100,000 William Donald Schaefer Handicap are Grade III stakes along with the Grade II Dixie.

The $100,000 Sir Barton Stakes, $100,000 Woodlawn Stakes and $100,000 Hirsch Jacobs Stakes complete the seven added-money races. The $39,200 Seattle Slew Memorial will have former "Slew Crew" owner Karen Taylor presenting a trophy.

Opening post time is 10:30 a.m.


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