Early Grey captured a $30,000 maiden special weight race to kick off the first of five Virginia-bred races at Laurel Park August 5th. The final four events were $75,000 stakes that each were making their debut — the William Backer, Hansel, Meadow Stables and Camptown Stakes.
Jockey Sheldon Russell led the effort for owner/breeder Morgan’s Ford Farm. The 4 year old Flatter gelding broke his maiden over a year ago at Laurel in a similar Virginia-bred race, but he was disqualified and placed last. Not so this afternoon. The winner settled into fifth inside in the nine horse field, moved outside to second at the top of the stretch, caught the leader with a furlong to go and crossed 1 1/4 lengths in front of Black Prong in 1:42.62.
The Phil Schoenthal trainee is out of the Black Tie Affair mare, Pearls.