Euroears Carves Impressive Win in Thanksgiving Handicap
James and Marilyn Helzer’s sensational sprinter Euroears returned to his Fair Grounds form of two seasons ago when he dispatched six solid rivals with ease in Thursday’s tradition-rich Thanksgiving Handicap at the Crescent City oval.
“Euroears is back – unfortunately,” said rival trainer Tom Amoss, who saddled Hunter Run Stable’s Tempo Five to finish second, beaten a length and a half by Euroears Thursday, and that might have been the most succinct description of New Orleans’ annual Turkey Day feature.
Euroears, hero of Fair Grounds’ F. W. Gaudin, Colonel Bradley and Duncan Kenner stakes two seasons ago, has recouped from the injuries that compromised his form since that meeting. After breaking alertly, the Bret Calhoun trainee was quickly in command under jockey Jamie Theriot and made the pace throughout without serious urging.
“He felt great under me,” said winning rider Theriot. “He was a little more aggressive today, and I knew the fractions were fast, but he was doing it so easy.”
Euroears paid $3.60, $2.80 and $2.60, while accomplishing early fractions of 21.81 and 44.62 before recording a final time of 1:09.35. Now with his eighth victory from 11 lifetime starts, Euroears has increased his career earnings to $324,756.
Tempo Five paid $3.60 and $3 as the runner-up, while finishing third, 3 1/2-lenghts farther back, was Adele Dilschneider and Claiborne Farm’s Tend, who returned $5.60 to show.
“It was a little nerve-wracking watching him getting ready for the race today,” admitted trainer Calhoun. “He looked like the same horse in the mornings, but then he answered all the questions (about him) today.”
Racing resumes Friday at Fair Grounds with a 10-race program with the first race beginning at 1:05 p.m.