It was a five-horse race to the finish in the $20,000 Penny Benjamin Series Final during the special Labor Day racing program at Harrah’s Hoosier Park. The two-year-old Indiana sired fillies turned in a highly competitive finish with Flo Lashomb getting the final nod in 1:55.4.
Starting from post three, Flo Lashomb and Homer Hochstetler made their intentions known early in the seven-horse field and went straight to the front, leading by open lengths at the quarter in :27.1. Their dominance continued at the half in :56.3 with only Helpfull Princess and James Yoder tracking their progress. The rest of the field was gapping off the top two.
Around the final turn, the rest of the field caught up with Helpfull Princess flushed out by Country Mamma and Kyle Wilfong and Semi Formal and Jimmy Whittemore.
At the head of the stretch, horses were fanned out four wide across the track to challenge Flo Lashomb for the lead. Epic Touch and Brandon Bates ducked to the inside to move up and challenge on the other side of Flo Lashomb. On the extreme outside Semi Formal was closing ground quickly and at the wire, less than a quarter length separated the top four. Flo Lashomb was the winner by a nose over Country Mamma. Semi Formal was another head back in third over Helpfull Princess.
Flo Lashomb paid $30.00 for the win. The freshman daughter of Swan for All is owned by Connie and Homer Hochstetler and trained by their son, Jay, who also conditioned Semi Formal to a third-place finish in the race. James Avritt Sr. of Kentucky bred the filly, who earned a new career best time and her second win in six starts. Flo Lashomb, who sold at the Lexington Select Yearling Sale last fall under the name of One for All, brought $17,000 through the sales ring.
The Labor Day card also included the sophomore divisions of Indiana Sires Stakes on the card, including the ninth appearance by undefeated Ponda Adventure in the three-year-old colt and gelding trot. Guided by Trace Tetrick, the Swan for All son turned in a gate to wire effort in 1:53.0. Late Nite Hawk and Kyle Wilfong finished two lengths back in second over Swan Flyer and Jay Cross for third.
Trained by Erv Miller, Ponda Adventure now has more than $200,000 in earnings this year and is 17 for 19 lifetime for owners Engel Stable of IL, Louis Willinger and Jerry Graham. Pond-a-Acres bred the standout gelding. His career best time remains at 1:52.4 taken in mid-July of this year.