Before a festive crowd of 6,300 attracted by camel and ostrich racing and an appearance of the famous Drama Llamas, Broadway Empire won the $35,000 Coyote Handicap and Lady Rosberg took the $35,000 Mesa Handicap.
Returning to the races following a four and one-half month layoff did little to dull the Robertino Diodoro-trained Broadway Empire ($3.00). Nursed to an effortless lead by Scott Stevens, multiple stakes winner Broadway Empire seized command at the outset and went into cruise control, winning by a deceptively easy one length over JP Rocker with Phoenix Gold Cup winner Absolutely Cool another nose back in third the field of six older horses.
Owned by the quartet of Randy Howg, Bob Butz, Rick Running Rabbit and Fouad El Kardy, Broadway Empire covered the 6 ½ furlongs in a sprightly 1:14.80 for his seventh win in 15 efforts for earnings of $523,224.
Already a proven double stakes winner on turf (Queen of the Green, Sun City), Lady Rosberg ($5.20) showed she’s equally adept on dirt, prevailing in the Mesa Handicap by 2 ¼ lengths over favored Small Moves with Peppy Miller third in the field of seven fillies and mares.
Tracking the spirited front runner Small Moves, Lady Rosberg switched leads and gears under Rocco Bowen in late stretch to notch her fourth victory of the meet.
Trained by Valorie Lund for Washington-based owner Karl Krieg, Lady Rosberg covered the 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.80.
The 5-year-old, Washington bred Lady Rosberg, was winning for the sixth time in her 13 race career and now has surpassed a hundred thousand dollars with $106,772 in earnings.