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Tizaqueena Rules In Fortin Handicap

NEW ORLEANS, La. (March 21, 2009) - After setting the pace while constantly pressed, Darley Stable's Tizaqueena continued willingly to be best by a half-length at the wire and then survived an steward's inquiry to win Saturday's $60,000 Fortin Handicap at Fair Grounds.

The winner clocked early splits of 25.30 and 51.13 before recording a final time of 1:47.00 for the about 1 1/16-mile distance over the Stall-Wilson turf course.  She increased her career earnings to $133,400 with her fourth victory in five lifetime starts and returned mutuels of $6.40, $4.40 and $3.80.

"She just ducked for a stride when she hit that sandy spot in the stretch," said winning jockey Jamie Theriot of the move that caused the inquiry.  "That's what that was all about."

Tizaqueena's win gave conditioner Mike Stidham a training triple for the day after She's Yummy won the opener and the 10-year-old Rockhurst won the fifth to become the first horse to go four-for-four at the meeting.

Sharbat, unhurried early, rallied late to gain the place and return $8.80 and $5.80 while finishing three-quarters of a length to the good of Nans Joy, who paid $4.80 in the show spot.

Racing resumes Sunday at Fair Grounds on the penultimate weekend of the current season with a 10-race program beginning at 12:35 p.m

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation's third-oldest Thoroughbred racing facility, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and nine off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. Fair Grounds' 137th Thoroughbred season will run from Nov. 14, 2008, through March 29, 2009, and its inaugural Quarter Horse meet was conducted from Aug. 20-24, 2008. Information about Fair Grounds can be found on the Internet at www.fairgroundsracecourse.com.