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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

This Pacer Has A Solid Rooting Section At Cal Expo

Ra Ra Steven is off to a fast start for trainer Jim Wilkinson Jr., who co-owns the 2-year-old pacing son of Little Steven with Billie Schwartz and David Rachford.

Ra Ra Steven has posed for pictures following three of his first four starts, including two stakes victories.  The most recent came last week, when he was hung to the early lead, opened up a bit once straightened for home and held safe by a nose over a good racetrack.

“This horse has a lot of sentimental value for Billie Schwartz,” Wilkinson explained.  “She’s out of Ra Ra Rose, who herself is out of Ra Ra Hanover, and she was the last horse Billie’s husband Michael Schwartz bought before he passed away.”

Ra Ra Steven came to play in his September 30 debut here, igniting late to be up by a neck, then parlayed that effort to a coast-to-coast score in the first Sire Stakes of the season for his division.  He just missed going all the way in the second stakes dance, then got another trophy after last week’s big-money clash.

“He’s shown ability right from the start, but he has also has some issues,” his mentor noted.  “I think he’s grown at least two or three inches just in the last six weeks, and I’m convinced he’s only going to get better and that his best racing is still in front of him.”


Beginning this week, all Pick 4’s on Thursday (in partnership with the USTA Strategic Wagering Committee), Friday and Saturday nights will feature a reduced 15 percent takeout rate, with the Late Pick on each of these programs coming with a $10,000-guaranteed gross pool.  In addition, on Saturday nights there will be a 0% takeout rate on the Late Pick 4 for winning wagers made on track or at

Live racing resumes at Cal Expo On Thursday, (November 10) at 5:30 p.m. (PST), and continues on Friday (November 11) & Saturday (November 12) is at 6:00 p.m.  On Thursday and every live card, Cal Expo offers free admission, as well as free preferred & general parking after 4:30 p.m.  Also on Thursday night from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Cal Expo offers a complete Lasagna dinner, which includes salad and bread, for just $3.00.  Additionally on Thursday, beer & wine can be purchased for $3.00 each as well.