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Recapturetheglory Convincing Winner of Illinois Derby

On a beautiful spring Saturday afternoon at Hawthorne Race Course, Recapturetheglory dismissed at odds of more than 15-1, led start to finish and emerged victorious in the 51st running of the Grade 2, $500,000 Illinois Derby. At the wire, Recapturetheglory was four lengths clear of Golden Spikes, Z Humor was third.

Denis of Cork, the even money favorite, and looking for this fourth win without a defeat, was a soundly beaten fifth.

Trained by Louie Roussel III and owned by Ronald Lemarque and Roussel, Recapturetheglory is named in honor of…or with the hope, of emulating the glorious campaign of their 1988 Preakness and Belmont Stakes winner, Risen Star.

“Louis Roussel named this wonderful racehorse Recapturetheglory because the Kentucky Derby got away from us,” Lemarque said.

On a day where the racetrack seemed to favor speed, Recapturetheglory, under perfect guidance by jockey E.T. Baird, found the front from their inside position, turned back a challenger from Golden Spikes down the backstretch and drew off with authority to seal the upset. The final time for the one mile and one-eighth race for three-year-olds was 1:49.01.

“He broke great and he reeled back in really professional,” said Baird. “He just rated real kind and when I called on him, he just gave me what he had.”

Recapturetheglory was the only entrant in the Derby to have never won two lifetime races, but Baird pointed out that it wasn’t as if he’d been facing lesser competition.

“He ran second to Cool Cold Man who won the Fountain of Youth,” Baird continued. “Regardless of what kind of condition that was, I think these three-year-olds are pretty much in the same boat right now”.

Recapturetheglory earned $300,000 for the win, establishing enough graded earnings to beg the question: Is the next logical step the the first Saturday in May? Ronald Lemarque was succinct in his response:

“I told Louie (Roussel) to back his bags. We’re going to the Kentucky Derby.”

Recapturetheglory returned $33.80 to win, $15.60 to place and $10.00 to show. Golden Spikes paid $6.80 and $5.40. Z Humor returned $4.80.

Additional Quote:

Julien Leparoux (jockey, Denis of Cork) “We had a good trip and when I asked him at the 3/8ths pole, I thought he was ready to go. He kept going but there was no kick to get there.”

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