Day At The Track

A fond farewell for Nutmegs Desire

04:56 AM 29 Mar 2019 NZDT
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Nutmegs Desire,Harness racing
Nutmegs Desire
Geri Schwarz photo

Following start No. 244 in Friday night's fourth race, Nutmegs Desire will begin a new career as a broodmare, but not before Cal Expo gives her a special sendoff.

The 11-year-old daughter of Real Desire comes into Friday's final harness racing assignment with 55 wins, 42 seconds and 30 thirds, $241,614 in her bank account and a 1:53 1/5 career standard that was set six years ago.

Nutmegs Desire goes about her business for Don and Barbara Arnstine, Steve Chambers and Tyler Wiseman with Kathie Plested conditioning and Steve Wiseman back at the controls.

In last week's tour, the hard-knocking pacer sat the pocket early for Wiseman, responded when the question was asked in the stretch and proved clearly best for her fifth snapshot from 11 starts on the season.

Nutmegs Desire is scheduled to be make her special appearance on Friday following the running of the second race and everyone is invited to come down and join in the ceremony.

"We like the idea of bringing Nutmeg down to the Winner's Circle before her race," said co-owner Chambers. "Mostly we're doing it this way because after she races, she's pretty full of herself and will not be very interested in standing still for a picture with a group.

"We intend to make the ceremony short and sweet, so Nutmeg can get back to the paddock and get dressed for her final race."

Nutmegs Desire will be presented with a new blanket and her owners will also be giving a check to the California Standardbred Rescue Fund representing last week's earnings from her victory.

Said Barbara Arnstine, "As much as we love and appreciate Nutmeg, this isn't just about her. It's a small chance to educate the public about harness horses - their sociability, their love for their 'jobs' and their longevity, which leads to another career in many cases."

Plans call for Nutmegs Desire to join Ricky Schneider's broodmare band in Alberta following Friday night's curtain call and she will be bred to Vertical Horizon.

An 11-race card is on tap Friday evening under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 6:10 p.m.

Low takeout wagers offer great value


There are two wagers offered here each night that come with a reduced 16 percent takeout rate - the 50-cent Pick 5 on the first five races of the evening and the 20-cent Pick 4.

The Pick 4 comes with a $30,000-guaratnteed gross pool on Fridays and a $40,000 guarantee on Saturdays.

To give you some idea of how sweet the reduced takeout can be, last Saturday night's 50-cent Pick 5 returned $2,381 for each winning ticket. Using the old takeout, the payoff would have been $2,126, a difference of $255 for each ducket.


By Mark Ratzky

Cal Expo Harness


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