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Win Willy Gearing Up for Another Go in 2013 | Sports & Recreation

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Win Willy Gearing Up for Another Go in 2013
Win Willy Gearing Up for Another Go in 2013

Jer-Mar Stable’s Win Willy, a fan favorite at Oaklawn since upsetting the 2009 Rebel Stakes (G2) at odds of 56-1, is preparing to kick off his 7-year-old season with a start in the $75,000 Fifth Season Stakes, the opening day feature Friday, Jan. 11. Win Willy, who won the Fifth Season in 2011, worked five furlongs Thursday in 1:03 4/5 over a fast track.

“It was okay from what I could see,” said trainer Mac Robertson. “We’ll probably work him again before he runs. It looks like the Fifth Season is about right.”

In addition to winning the 2011 Fifth Season, the Monarchos horse also won the Oaklawn Handicap (G2) that year, but was unable to duplicate that form in 2012 at Oaklawn. However, he did have one of the best summers and falls of his career. He won three stake races at Delaware between June and October and most recently finished fourth in the $100,000 Swatara Stakes at Penn National.

“He’s had a lot of breaks over his time so he’s stayed pretty fresh,” said Robertson. “He really started to perk up at Delaware and got to running pretty good up there last year. It’s a new year. He didn’t like the way the track played last year, but so far it seems like he’s doing better this time.”

Entries for the Fifth Season and the entire opening day card will be taken Tuesday, Jan. 8.

Apprehender, who turned heads with his 7 ½ length maiden win last Jan., warmed up for his 4-year-old debut in the $60,000 King Cotton Stakes Jan. 26 by breezing a half mile in 50 4/5 Thursday … After an unsuccessful attempt to stretch his speed in the Grade 3 Southwest Stakes last Feb., the Posse gelding, now trained by Chris Richard, found his niche sprinting, closing out the year with a close second in the $200,000 Remington Sprint Cup and a win in an allowance race … Apprehender’s stablemate Outta Tune, the upset winner of last year’s $250,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap, breezed a half mile in 49 4/5 … Najjaar, another top 3-year-old from 2012, continued his comeback by breezing a half mile in 51 1/5 … The long-term goal for the Shadwell Farm homebred, trained by Danny Peitz, is the Oaklawn Handicap April 14. He has not started since finishing third in the Arlington Classic on the turf last May.