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Rick Plano is a sweep stakes winner at Cal-Expo
Saturday, October 23, 2010 - by Scott Ehrlich, publicity director, Cal-Expo

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Sacramento, CA --- Freshman fillies on both gaits were featured at Cal-Expo on Friday night (Oct. 22) in a pair of $15,000 California Sires Stakes, in which the Rick Plano trained Thatssomebracciola and Hi Fidelity took home the honors.

In the first of the two divisions, this for the trotters in a non-wagering event held in advance of the betting races, Thatssomebracciola overcame a good amount -- which included lagging the start five lengths from post three in the field of five.

"I was being extra careful behind the gate as this was her first start," stated trainer Rick Plano. "As a result of being careful I got left behind the gate. I, however, benefited a spot in the first turn when Dancergirl (Luke Plano) broke -- all while I babied her because from the starting gate to the quarter pole she's a little nervous -- then she's fine."

Coming away in fourth position, but held up and steadied in the first turn because of the breaking Dancergirl, Plano and his young charge inherited third while four lengths behind Dancinwiththedevil (Steve Wiseman) in a :31.1 opening quarter. Now inheriting second at the three-eighths-mile pole as a result of a break by Dancinwiththedevil, Plano and his filly now found themselves three lengths from the pacesetting Claim Jumper (Steve Desomer), who reached the half-mile station in 1:02.3.

"I was glad to be second at that point, but still had ground to make up," noted Plano.

Racing 2-1/2 lengths off the lead through the final turn, the daughter of Armbro Scribe showed a burst of speed at the three-quarter marker, timed in 1:34.

"At the three-quarters when she closed the gap, I thought I had a chance to win."

Steadily moving forward in the lane, as was Claim Jumper, it was now down to who could outfight who.

"She gained, but Claim Jumper was trotting real well and I was urging the best I could. As it turns out I was fortunate to get by."

Putting a nose up in deep stretch, Thatssomebracciola won by a head. Bred and owned by Plano as well, the youngster stopped the timer at 2:04.3, establishing a lifetime mark. A game Claim Jumper finished in second and Dancinwiththedevil finished another 13-3/4 lengths farther back in third.

"It was a phenomenal race for her first lifetime start," finished Plano.

In the second division, this for the pacers, the Rick Plano conditioned Hi Fidelity never looked back.

Leaving from post position five in the field of seven and racing three-wide the first eighth of a mile before finding the inside, the filly cut out fractions of :28.4, :59.1 and 1:28.4 before holding firm by two lengths. Owned by Wayne Knittel in partnership with breeder Laurette Odney, the daughter of Hi Ho Silverheel's won ($6.40) in 1:57.4, a lifetime best. Whip And A Prayer (Rich Wojcio) closed nicely to be second and Poorlittlerichgirl (Tim Maier) finished another half-length farther back in third.

Noted Rick Plano: "I was able to get to the lead and control things. I started paddling a little bit through the last turn and she got away from them, then held them off in 1:57.4, which is a strong mile for 2-year-old fillies."

Live racing continues at Cal-Expo on Saturday (Oct. 23) at 5:35 p.m. (PDT).

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