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Here is your Colonial Cup day guide
Sue Sensor
SUE SENSOR HOPES All Knight can follow the same path as Top Striker. The Camdenresident and Thoroughbred owner has both jumpers competing on Saturdays Colonial Cup race card. - photo by C-I photo by Lindsay Jennings

Sure, the weatherman is calling for temperatures to hover around the low 50s for Saturday’s 45th running of the Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup Steeplechase Races. But at least it is supposed to be sunny so, there is little chance of a repeat of the rain- and cold-ravaged 2000 Colonial Cup.

The gates to the Springdale Race Course will swing open to the general public at 9 a.m. The Jack Russell Terrier Races will begin at 9:30 a.m. with the Salute to the Military kicking off at 11 a.m. The first race of the afternoon will meet the starters’ flag at 12:30 p.m.

The day of racing, featuring the $100,000 Colonial Cup (Gr. I), brings the curtain down on the 2014 National Steeplechase Association season.

The first six races will all be over fences, including one over the timber course. The races are scheduled to be run at 40-minute intervals. If the schedule goes according to plan, the feature chase will go off at 3:10 p.m. with the finale, an amateur flat chase, getting a 4:30 p.m. start.

 

Do you believe in omens?

The first race of the day, the $25,000 Sport of Kings maiden hurdle, drew 11 entries and could be a preview of some of the jumpers who will return to Camden next spring to run in the $50,000 Carolina Cup. Last year, this race was won by Top Striker, who is owned by Camden’s Sue Sensor and is trained by Camden’s Arch Kingsley. All Top Striker did this past March was to romp to an 11 ½-length victory in the Carolina Cup feature.

Among the 11 horses set to go to the post come Saturday will be the Sensor-owned and Kingsley-trained All Knight. The 5-year-old gelding was a four-time winner on the flat before coming to Kingsley’s barn and becoming a jumper. He was third in his debut over fences at Callaway Gardens in Georgia on Nov. 1.

It should be noted that Top Striker also made his second start over jumps in this race last year after finishing second in Charleston two weeks prior to the Colonial Cup.

 

Prelude to a championship:

The $25,000 Raymond G. Woolfe Memorial for 3-year-olds, is a chase from which several jumpers received a boost to what would become championship careers.

Among the winners of this race who went on bigger and better things in their career were 1991 winner and 1994 Eclipse Award victor Warm Spell and Flat Top, which took the Woolfe Memorial in 1996 and went on to become the Eclipse Award winner in 1998 and 2002. Odds-on 2014 Eclipse Award winner Demonstrative, who will run in Saturday’s feature, won the 3-year-old title after winning the Woolfe Memorial in 2010.

Even second-place finishers in this race went on to capture Eclipse Awards including Correggio (1994 Woolfe, 2006 Eclipse Award) and Slip Away (2006 Woolfe, 2010 Eclipse Award.)

A jumper to watch in this race on Saturday is Perfect Union. Owned by Carolina Cup Racing Association Chairman Beverly Steinman and trained by Doug Fout, the gelded son of Purim comes to Camden after a 7 ¾-length in a $25,000 chase at Far Hills, N.J., last month.

 

Going for the repeat:

Straight to It, an 8-year-old Giant’s Causeway gelding, will try to win the $20,000 Springdale Open timber chase for the second time in as many years for 2014 National Steeplechase Association leading trainer Jack Fisher.

The timber race is run over a figure-8-shaped layout and at 3 ½ miles and is, easily, the longest race of the day.

 

Running for Dale:

Retired Carolina Cup Racing Association Director and Camden resident Dale K. Thiel will be a part of Saturday’s proceedings as the Thiel-owned Sir Dynamite is included in the seven-horse field in the $20,000 Hobkirk Hill.

The 9-year-old Dynaformer gelding is trained by Camden’s Britt Graham and finished eighth in the 2013 Colonial Cup feature.

 

Ticket, parking info:

Here is the information on tickets and parking spaces for the Colonial Cup:

General admission tickets: $30, (Children under the age of 12 will be admitted free, if accompanied by an adult ticket holder.)

General parking: $10

Infield parking: $135 per parking space, which includes two general admission race tickets

Pro Park: $135 per parking space, which includes two general admission race tickets

Restricted area parking (for oversized vehicles): $215, which includes a parking space and two tickets

Front row paddock side parking: $265, which includes two general admission race tickets

Grandstand box: $625; Individual grandstand box seat: $135, which includes premier seating at the finish line. Watch the races from the best seats at the race course, and dine with the winning owners and trainers in the Post and Paddock Club presented by Aberdeen Catery Luncheon Tent on the mound next to the Grandstand. Includes credentials for six box seats, admission for six to the "Breakfast with KershawHealth" in the Grandstand Pavilion, six VIP Hospitality Luncheon Tent credentials, admission for six to the Winner’s Reception after the races in the Lexus VIP Hospitality Luncheon Tent, and one boxholder parking credential.

Tickets and parking spaces may be purchased at the race office, located inside the National Steeplechase Museum on Knights Hill Rd. in Camden, or by calling 432-6513.

For complete race-day information, please visit www.carolina-cup.org.