An enthusiastic crowd of 10,356 was on hand on Saturday to herald the return of live Thoroughbred racing to Suffolk Downs. After a ten-month hiatus, the track hosted the first of three scheduled special festival days of racing which included food trucks from over a dozen vendors, craft beer, live music and family fun activities for the whole family.
Fan favorite jockey Tammi Piermarini, the third all-time leading female rider in history, returned to the East Boston oval and won four races on the card, including two of the three $50,000 stakes races. Piermarini started her winning day in the fifth race with Exchange the Limit ($5.00) for longtime local trainer Brenda McCarthy. She teamed up with graded stakes winning trainer Marcus Vitali to win the African Prince Stakes with Miss Wilby ($2.20). In the eighth race, she piloted Castellani ($3.60) to a maiden victory on the turf for trainer Christophe Clement. She capped off her day with a victory for the 2014 Suffolk Downs leading trainer, Jay Bernardini, in the Isadorable Stakes with Navy Nurse ($4.20). Piermarini is now based out of Pennsylvania.
“It feels like I never left,” said Piermarini. “I'm grateful to all of these trainers giving me the keys to their Cadillacs and giving me the opportunity to ride. It is great to be home and see friends, family and all of the fans.”
Suffolk Downs has two remaining live racing and food truck festival days scheduled for the year – Saturday, October 3 and Saturday, October 31.
“Today was a celebration,” said Chip Tuttle, the Chief Operating Officer at Suffolk Downs. “It was a very nice homecoming for fans and horsemen alike.”
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