Canterbury Park’s season wound down to a final highlight Saturday, when Amy’s Challenge won the $75,000 Shakopee Juvenile, featuring three of the fastest 2-year-old thoroughbreds in North America.
The two favorites, Amy’s Challenge and Mr. Jagermeister, battled to the finish line, and Amy’s Challenge and jockey Jareth Loveberry prevailed by three-quarters of a length in 1 minute, 9.58 seconds. Amy’s Challenge, the betting favorite at 4-5, led up the backstretch and through the turn of the 6-furlong sprint before being challenged and headed by Mr. Jagermeister and jockey Andrew Ramgeet as the two turned for home. Amy’s Challenge fought back on the rail to win.
“She just flies,” Loveberry said of Amy’s Challenge. “This is an exception filly. She is so smooth. When she got headed she dug in and kept digging and digging and digging.”
Amy’s Challenge is trained by Mac Robertson and owned by Novogratz Racing Stable. She returned $3.60 to win. Her connections have suggested that the next start may be at Keeneland in the Grade 1 Alcibiades on Oct. 6.
Robertson, who won five races Saturday, won his 11th training title at Canterbury. He finished the season with 69 wins. Loveberry, riding at Canterbury Park for the first time, won the riding title with 74 wins; he had three wins on closing day. The leading thoroughbred owner was Novogratz Racing Stable, which won the final race to pass Curtis Sampson for the award with 17 wins on the season.
Canterbury Park officials expect the average daily handle to surpass the record of $627,594 set last year.
“It’s been a great season,” track President Randy Sampson said. “Things were very positive from a racing standpoint, and there was good news on the business side with the handle up. We’re quite pleased with how the race meet came out.”