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April 29, 2012
It was a family celebration on Saturday evening at Sam Houston Race Park as Bok Man captured the $22,500 Red Cell Sam Houston Distance Challenge. The 4-year-old son of Boknaai, making his seventh start at the distance of 870 yards, closed gamely to win the first stakes of his career and become the first stakes winner for his sire.
Owned by Cynthia A. Jerman and trained by her husband, Jerry, Bok Man was ridden by their son Jeff, who arrived just moments before the race. He had ridden the third race at Delta Downs, jumped in his truck and made the two-hour drive to Sam Houston. He may have faced traffic on I-10 but navigated a flawless trip on the track, covering 870 yards in :45.791.
“I really didn’t think I was going to make it on time, but God willing, it worked out,” said the winning rider. “I hadn’t had a chance to ride this horse since last year. Dad sent him out to Sunland, but I watched his races. I felt that he wasn’t close enough, so that was what I tried to do tonight. He really has a good finish to him.”
It was a jubilant celebration for the Jerman family as the striking gray entered the winner’s circle.
“I have to give all the glory to God,” said Cynthia Jerman following the race. “He’s an awesome horse and part of our family. We’ve been hoping for something like this for a long time.”
“Jeff did it for us; gave him a great ride,” said Jerry Jerman. “I want to thank everyone involved. Our groom, Jose, broke the horse and did a wonderful job with him. It all came together.”
Morning-line favorite Kite Flyer, who finished third in last year’s Red Cell Distance Challenge Championship (G1) for the Dark Horse Partnership, drew the coveted rail post and had the lead under rider Santos Carrizales until Bok Man slipped by at the wire.
“Unfortunately, he hadn’t run this year and needed an out,” said Carrizales. “We thought he was ready with the work we put into him. He’s a nice horse.”
Noah Powell’s Mysterious Streaker ran third, followed by Kudos for Quick Dash, Midnight Bushwhacker and Im A Grand Believer.
Bok Man left the gates as the third betting choice and paid $10.80 for the win, which also earned him a berth in the $125,000 Red Cell Distance Challenge Championship on October 27 at Prairie Meadows. Jerman indicated that Bok Man might make one more start at Sam Houston in the $25,000 Governor’s Cup Marathon on May 19.
Bred in Texas by Patty and Bryan McDonald, Bok Man is out of the Devon Lane (TB) mare One Fine Devon (TB). This victory made him the first stakes winner sired by Boknaai, a two-time stakes winner and Grade 3-placed son of Mr Jess Perry.
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