It may have been a nasty night for all those participating in the rain at Rosecroft Raceway on Saturday night (April 28), but harness racing owner David Kinee was all smiles as Art's Chic (Artiscape-Chicane Hanover) broke her maiden in her fourth career start.
Art's Chic has made all her pari-mutuel starts at Rosecroft which has no age caps on maidens in order to allow all horses, young and old, a chance to race in competitive classes.
Art's Chic never saw the racetrack until last September at age 6 when she tried unsuccessfully to qualify at Freehold. In her second qualifier, at Harrah's Philadelphia, she stayed flat but didn't go in time.
Undetered two months later, this one shaved more than eight seconds off her best time in a qualifier at Meadowlands Racetrack. She was then turned out for three more months, moving into trainer Doug Sweigart's barn and then qualified in 2:00.1 at Philadelphia, which easily qualified her to race at Rosecroft.
In her first career pari-mutuel start at Rosecroft on March 10, she got away slowly and broke while making a big move on the backside. After qualifying again, with Tim Curtin at the controls this time in 1:58, she returned to the races and put in a solid speed try, finishing third in 1:57.3. In her next start Art's Chic once again improved her race time, finishing third in 1:56.4.
On a track rated "fast" despite the on and off rains, Art's Chic faced the starter in race eight, leaving from post 4. Curtin let the action settle and was quickly on the way to the lead in 28.1.
Art's Chic backed down the half to 58.4 and then hit the gas going down the backside to complete three quarters in 1:27.4. As the field turn for home the only one with a chance to catch her was Southwest Rose (Mark Gray) who had sat to her back during the middle half mile. Curtin went to work and Art's Chic dug in and was never in doubt to the wire.
In recognition of her continued improvement the crowd had made Art's Chic the betting favorite at 1-5 odds. David Kinee has owned this one since 2008.
Art's Chic win brings to mind the story of Dream Our Way, another 7-year-old that broke his maiden at Rosecroft last fall and went on to win six in a row in route to Co-Pacer of the Meet honors.
by Mike Wandishin, for Rosecroft Raceway