Longest of longshots wins 70th Longacres Mile

The Mirror

It was the most unlikely of possibilities, but this chapter in Longacres Mile history was just that — history.

No Giveaway went to post with amazing 60-to-1 odds, the longest shot on the board, and came from over 20 lengths back on the backstretch to capture the $250,000 Longacres Mile Sunday afternoon at Emerald Downs race track in Auburn.

With the victory at the 70th running of the Mile, three firsts in racing occurred as a result. It was the first Longacres Mile win for 31-year-old trainer Grant Forster, owner Herman Sarkowsky and rider Juan Gutierrez.

Forster had a pretty solid weekend. He also won the $100,000 Washington Breeders’ Cup Oaks race with A Classic Life and Sarkowsky, the Northwest sports magnate who was a part of the building of the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trail Blazers, has spent 45 years in the horse racing business.

Sarkowsky was the closest in the Mile 34 years ago when his horse came within a sixteenth of a mile to win the 1971 edition with Titular II. The horse was comfortably on the lead in mid-stretch when he shied after glimpsing the starting gate.

Sunday’s No Giveway win paid the highest return in the history of the Mile for a win ticket — $122 for a $2 bet.

“He can go inside or outside,” Gutierez said of No Giveaway. “I was little worried about an 11-horse field, with the traffic, but I got through and I won.”

The win continues a tradition of stakes wins by Forster, who won six stakes his first year of training in 2003, four of them with No Giveaway’s sister, Youcan’ttakeme, the Horse of the Meeting for that year.

“This is for the whole family and the whole team,” Forster said. “I was standing in my lucky spot and I could see he was moving. Juan did a great job. There is nothing like that feeling when they cross the line a winner, especially in the Mile.”

“This is better than winning the Breeders’ Cup,” a beaming Sarkowsky said. “I thought if we could finish third we’d do all right.”

Sarkowsky won the 1993 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (a Grade I race) with Phone Chatter.

Last year’s Mile champion, Adreamisborn, finished fifth as the race favorite.

“My horse was a little lackadaisical,” jockey Russell Baze said about Adreamisborn. “I got him to the outside where I wanted him into the second turn, but he flattened out on me in the lane.”

Local favorite Flamethrowintexan finished sixth after dueling Sabertooth for the lead for most of race.

No Giveaway also paid $42.40 for a place bet and $14.20 for a show bet. It marked his sixth win in 10 starts and improved his earnings to $223,906.

Quiet Cash paid $19.40 and $8.80 for second and Desert Boom paid $5.20 for show.

The superfecta paid $14,926.70, the highest pay out this season and the third highest in Emerald history.

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565,

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