Racing & Wagering

Éclair De Lune Gives Duchossois Emotional Victory In Grade I Beverly D.

| Churchill Downs Communications | 08/25/2010 #

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Aug. 21, 2010) - Arlington Park chairman Richard L. Duchossois won the most important race to him when his Éclair de Lune, trained by Hall of Fame conditioner Ron McAnally, overtook pacesetter Romacaca in the stretch to the score a 1 ½-length victory in the Grade I $750,000 Beverly D., which is named for Duchossois' late wife.

"Winning this race means more to me than winning the Kentucky Derby," said the 88-year-old Duchossois in accepting the Beverly D. trophy from his children and grandchildren,

Ridden by Arlington Park's leading jockey Junior Alvarado, Éclair de Lune covered the mile and three-sixteenths over "good" turf in 1:56.56

"This is one race I've wanted to win for (Mr. Duchossois)," said McAnally. "He's a first class man and I knew he wanted to win this race for his late wife. He's one of the greatest guys and very generous to everyone.

"Same type of race she ran the last time," the trainer said of the trip by the 4-year-old daughter of Marchand de Sable. "Alvarado rode her last time and he felt he could win with her today."

"I'm very proud to have been given the chance to ride this filly," Alvarado said. "This was a wonderful race for me to win. When I rode her the last time, I knew I could win this race with her because the pace was so slow last time that I had every confidence today."

Hot Cha Cha, winner of the Grade III Pucker Up over this course last year, made a three-wide move to get up for second over the fast closing Gypsy's Warning, who finished third in the nine-horse line-up. Romacaca, a locally based 11-1 longshot, led for more than three quarters of a mile before fading a bit to finish fourth.

"I had a perfect trip but couldn't catch them," Graham said of the runner-up. "Plus, she is in season."

Éclair de Lune won for first time since being purchased by Duchossois last year. She earned $436,500 to move her bankroll past the half-million dollar mark to $547,843.

Sent off at odds of more than 6-1, Éclair de Lune paid $14.80, $7.40 and $4.80. Hot Cha Cha returned $5.40 and $3.40. Gypsy's Warning paid $5.80.

Romacaca, Treat Gently, Pachattack, Acoma, Ave and Biased completed the order of finish.