031019_fonner002_Love At Night (1) ridden by Chris Fackler leads Atlantic Slew (4) ridden by Armondo Martinez down the stretch at Saturday's Bold Accent Stakes race at Fonner Park in Grand Island. (For the Independent/ Jimmy Rash)

Maybe Love At Night was destined to win a race like the $10,000 Bold Accent Stakes Saturday at Fonner Park.

After all, her mother Lovesablumin won the Orphan Kist twice (2007-08), the Runza Stakes (2008) and the Fonner Park Special Stakes (2006).

Now Love At Night is a stakes winner at Fonner as well after rolling to a win in the Bold Accent, and trainer Terrell Hemmer gives all the credit to his wife Rita.

“She’s a nice mare, and she had her game face on,” Hemmer said. “My wife takes a lot of abuse from her when she gets ready to run. She’s a handful to say the least.”

But Love at Night did everything jockey Chris Fackler asked of her.

“She broke real sharp,” Fackler said. “There was a little water path there and she jumped in deep. She’s a pretty nice mare.”

The 6-year-old daughter of Mr. Nightlinger and Lovesablumin pulled away early in the four-furlong sprint and led by three heading into the stretch. That away enough. Neither Road Show or Atlantic Slew could make up any ground and Love at Night won by three lengths in 47.4.

The race was supposed to be run a week ago, but the Fonner card was canceled that day after the first race because of the weather and track conditions. Hemmer wasn’t sure if he wanted to run her this week, because he was pointing her towards the Orphan Kist Stakes next weekend.

“She’s been training great,” said Hemmer, who lives and trains on the edge of Grand Island. “I wasn’t going to run her. There’s a Nebraska-bred race next week. I wasn’t going to run her back this quick, but she’s just going so good. We train at home on the farm. We’ve been able to train a lot more than they have here.

“She’s just been feeling good and acting right, and I just said, ‘Let’s run her.”’

Love At Night paid $23.20, $7.80 and $560. Road Show paid $5.20 and $5.20 to place and Atlantic Slow $3 to show.

It wasn’t Love At Night’s first stakes win. She won the Falls Amiss Stakes last summer at Horsemen’s Park in Omaha after winning two straight races at Fonner Park.

It was the seventh win in just 13 career starts for Love at Night, who didn’t run as a 3-year-old. The win was worth $6,120 for owners Rita Hemmer and Thomas E. Thomas and brought her career earnings to $54,011.

“It’s a big win for my wife. She does all the work with this horse,” Hemmer said again. “She gets all the credit.”

Now Hemmer is planning to run her back next week in the six-furlong, $10,000 Orphan Kist, a race she finished second in two years ago. It’s a quick turnaround, but he thinks she’s up to the task.

“This is only four furlongs,” he said of the Bold Accent. “You have to see how she comes back, you got to do that. But that’s the plan. Sometimes plans work.”

Be My Shadow wins Ogataul

It was fitting that Be My Shadow won the 24th running of the $10,000 Ogataul Stakes for trainer Marvin Johnson.

That’s because Johnson trained Ogataul from 1979 to 1985. He had 23 wins in 83 career starts.

“It was an honor to win that race,” Johnson said.

It was the second straight Ogataul win for Johnson and Be My Shadow. This time he had to hold off Go Gold and Morning Shadow to get the win the six-furlong race by a length in 1:14.1.

Fackler, who won both stakes races on Saturday, was equally happy to get to ride Be My Shadow.

“The horse has been working great in the mornings,” Fackler said. “It was an honor to ride him.”

Be My Shadow paid $4, $2.40 and $2.10. Go Gold paid $2,20 and $2.10 to place and Morning Shadow $3 to show.

Johnson wasn’t sure how Be My Shadow would perform in his first race since July 18.

“He’s did a nice job again. I was wondering whether or not he would because we’d missed so many days training, but I guess everybody did,” Johnson said. “We were all in the same boat.”

The win was worth $5,100 for Seven Arms Stables and brought Be My Shadow’s career earings to $141,639.


— Chilango won his second straight race Saturday. The thing is, it was over a year beteen the two races. The 7-year-old gelding owned by James Compton and ridden Fackler won the fourth race, a $5,000 claiming race. His last out was March 3, 2018 when he won another $5,000 claiming race at Fonner.

— The few bettors who bet the 1-8 exacta in the fifth race got a nice reward. The No. 1, Merlo’s Lad, teamed with the No. 8, Doblec’stwopunch, to produce a $411 payoff.

— But that wasn’t the best exacta of the day. Zyxyz won the sixth race at 20-1. Paired with Indy N Roses in second, the exacta paid $488.40.

— Jockey Freddy Manrrique and trainer Isai Gonzalez teamed up to win two more races Saturday. The duo won with Mr. Fast Dixie Gold in the second and with Sweet Shot in the seventh.

— World Famous Sam found his way back to the winner’s circle in the six-furlong eighth race. Ridden by Scott Bethke and trained by Troy Bethke, the 10-year-old gelding won for the eighth time in 12 career starts at Fonner.

— Jockey Cesar Ordaz won on Silver Planet in the second for trainer Cresencio Arceo and on C O Littlejoe for trainer Richard Bliss in the 11th.

Sports reporter for The Independent

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