Saturday, April 21, 2018
Sports

Caitlyn Stoodard starting to come into her own at Derby Lane

ST. PETERSBURG — Seventeen days before she was whelped, Caitlyn Stoodard's namesake made a name for herself.

Caitlyn Stoddard, a thoroughbred jockey at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, won with her first career mount — riding Im Charming to a score at 87-1 odds in his 15th maiden race.

Perhaps greyhound owner Raymond Thurber, a resident of Vernon in the Florida Panhandle, had that May 1, 2015, moment in mind when he named his dog in honor of the Baltimore native.

Caitlyn Stoodard has made an impression, too. The 61-pound female, who entered the 86th edition of the $5,000 St. Petersburg Consolation Derby on June 30 without a win on the 660-yard course in seven previous tries at Derby Lane, captured her first stakes title on the track's final night of the 2016-17 season.

"I'm not really surprised she won, but I'm surprised, because she's not a real ⅜ths(er)," Capabal kennel assistant trainer Gudrun Scheider said. "She is like in the middle. … She can do a 5/16ths, and she can also (run) ⅜ths. If everything is right for her, she can go."

Caitlyn Stoodard, a 26-month-old dog from a litter by Street Credit and Gmc Kool Kassie, is one of the latest Thurber dogs with jockey-related names to be handled by Capabal kennel owner Henry Parker and trainer Belinda Parker.

Three other greyhounds — Brian Ernst, David Lopez and John Valazquez — combined to give Henry Parker three starters in a stakes championship race for the first time May 29 in the $20,000 Remembrance — a race won by Nova kennel's Poweroftraction. John Valazquez clocked Derby Lane's best time of 30.13 seconds at 550 yards in the previous January-to-June meet, and tied for seventh in the win standings at 12.

His namesake, Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez, won his second Kentucky Derby this year aboard Always Dreaming, who broke his maiden Jan. 25 at Tampa Bay Downs in Oldsmar.

"(Thurber) likes to name his dogs after jockeys," Parker said. "We're pretty happy for him. … He is a great guy.

"(Caitlyn Stoodard) is pretty young, and we've been thinking about making a ⅜ths dog out of her. She is awesome around the kennel. (Thurber) raises his dogs, and they get more hands-on (attention)."

Caitlyn Stoodard's victory in the Consolation Derby required a photo finish. After rallying to take the lead from pace-setter Yolo Pink (Burk Greyhounds kennel) entering the stretch, she held off a charging Noelles Bella (Floyd) to win by a head in 37.85 seconds. She paid $12.60 to win and earned $2,200.

It was the seventh win for Caitlyn Stoodard from 27 starts.

HORSES: Tampa Bay Downs nine-time training champion Jamie Ness got his first graded score with his 2,621 career victory July 8 when 11-1 shot Ghost Hunter won the Grade III $100,000 Arlington Handicap under jockey Edwin Gonzalez at Arlington Heights, Ill.

Comments
2018 NFL schedule: All 256 games ranked

2018 NFL schedule: All 256 games ranked

When the NFL released its schedule Thursday night, we were going to rank the best and worst games. Instead, we entered the Times schedule-evaluation laboratory and ranked all 256 based on their attractiveness and the quality of the teams involved.One...
Updated: 16 minutes ago
Bucs not listening to outsiders, but expectations remain high for 2018

Bucs not listening to outsiders, but expectations remain high for 2018

TAMPA —Wait 'til this year seems to be the refrain at One Buc Place, even though the team was strangled by expectations in 2017. But a solid offseason that has already brought a rebuilt defensive line, new center and place-kicker has renewed th...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Man, 20, arrested in killing of Durant High football player

Man, 20, arrested in killing of Durant High football player

Deputies arrested a man late Friday they say shot and killed Durant High School football player Grover Wills.Samuel Morrissey Jr., 20, was being held without bail Saturday at the Hillsborough County jail and faces a second-degree murder charge, accor...
Updated: 2 hours ago
For starters: Rays vs. Twins, with a familiar look

For starters: Rays vs. Twins, with a familiar look

Not that Friday's game went as planned, but the Rays ended up with an 8-7 10-inning win, and they're going to trot out the same lineup tonight in hopes of doing it again.RELATED: Rays find a way to prevailLHP Blake Snell will be on the mound for the ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Devils top D Vatanen out today vs. Lightning

Devils top D Vatanen out today vs. Lightning

TAMPA — Devils top defenseman Sami Vatanen will not play today because of an upper body injury suffered during the first period of Game 4, coach John Hynes announced this afternoon.Mirco Mueller will replace Vatanen in the lineup.Game 5 be...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Archer’s sparkling start precedes surreal finish

Archer’s sparkling start precedes surreal finish

By now, we presume you've had a few hours to digest the Rays' improbable 10-inning triumph Friday night.So instead of rehashing the whole bizarre body of work, how 'bout a closer look at the workmanship. Specifically, Chris Archer's.Partially lost in...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Now Batting in Double A: Biggio, Bichette and Guerrero

Now Batting in Double A: Biggio, Bichette and Guerrero

HARTFORD, Conn. — Craig Breslow is 37 years old, with a dozen years of experience as a left-handed reliever in the major leagues. He is pitching now for the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats, just getting to know his teammates. In their openin...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Shaquem Griffin: ‘I’m not just a feel-good story’

Shaquem Griffin: ‘I’m not just a feel-good story’

TAMPA — Shaquem Griffin wakes up knowing each day will be better than the last and barely unable to wait until tomorrow."It's just a whirlwind,'' Griffin said.On Thursday, he will walk the red carpet with his family, including his twin brother,...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Live blog: Lightning aims to eliminate Devils in Game 5

Live blog: Lightning aims to eliminate Devils in Game 5

Follow our live coverage of the opening-round NHL playoff series between the Lightning and New Jersey Devils. Times reporters, editors, sports columnists and photo journalists will chronicle the action on and off the ice through updates, analysis, ph...
Published: 04/21/18
Clearwater Central Catholic tops Dunedin Spring Tournament host in extra innings

Clearwater Central Catholic tops Dunedin Spring Tournament host in extra innings

DUNEDIN — After losing a four-run lead thanks to a bad sixth inning, it would have been easy for Clearwater Central Catholic to fold against Dunedin in the final of the 49th annual Dunedin Spring Tournament. But quality relief pitching from Gar...
Published: 04/20/18