As the late summer/fall/early winter meet at Laurel Park begins Sept. 8, there are less than four months remaining in the Fantasy Ownership Challenge, and it's still pretty wide-open in the standings given the fact one or two wins in races with generous purses can make a big difference.
That was the case with Yes Mz Adah, the Parx Racing-based 4-year-old filly who won three in a row since the claim by owner Andrew Sulley and trainer Patricia Farro. The current standings leader with $66,370 in earnings since the Challenge began March 18 at Laurel, Yes Mz Adah is entered in a $69,000 allowance race on the grass at Parx Sept. 9.
Not far behind in second is Gunpowder Farms' Indian Paint ($63,745), who is based at Fair Hill Training Center with trainer Kelly Rubley. The 4-year-old filly has tried stakes company this year and in late June led the standings—she only had to beat one horse in an off-the-turf $36,000 allowance race at Delaware Park.
The top five is rounded out by Danny Limongelli's Flight Crew ($53,396), trained by Hugh McMahon; Participate ($45,253), recently claimed by owner/trainer Ann Merryman; and Triple Tree Stable's Claravoyant ($41,260), a Mary Eppler trainee who won a $50,000 maiden special weight event on the first day of the Challenge.
The complete listing is available under the Standings tab. The contest runs through Dec. 31. Remember that you can track your horse (entries, results, workouts, scratches) by signing up for Virtual Stable at the Equibase website.
The Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, Maryland Jockey Club and Maryland Horse Breeders Association in March announced that $50,000 is up for grabs based on horses' earnings from March 18-Dec. 31 as recorded by Equibase. Most of the about 40 horses in the Challenge have three fantasy owners, so prize money will split accordingly based on the final results.
The horse with the highest earnings will net his or her fantasy owners $30,000, followed by $10,000 for second, $5,500 for third, $3,000 for fourth, and $1,500 for fifth.
Through Sept. 7 Challenge horses have won most of their races at Laurel and Delaware. All of them combined have earned about $750,000—for their real owners—since March 18.