Belmont Park will host two major steeplechase races, the $150,000 Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) and the $75,000 William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes, on Thursday, Sept. 19. Both races are likely to play major roles in determining year-end titles in the National Steeplechase Association’s championship division and the novice division for newcomers to jump racing.
The Lonesome Glory will be run at 2 1/2 miles over National Fences, and the Entenmann Memorial will be at 2 1/4 miles. For the first time, the Lonesome Glory will be run as a handicap.
“We are most grateful to the New York Racing Association for scheduling these two major races at the Belmont Fall Championship Meet,” said NSA Director of Racing Bill Gallo Jr. “Both the championship and novice divisions are wide open this year, and the Lonesome Glory and the Entenmann Memorial should provide insights into who is likely to break out of the pack in those title contests.”
Last year, the Lonesome Glory kicked off the championship campaign of Mary Ann Houghland’s Pierrot Lunaire. Trained by Blythe Miller Davies, Pierrot Lunaire won the Lonesome Glory and then was victorious in the Grand National (Gr. 1) at Far Hills, N.J., to lock up the Lonesome Glory Champions Award as the year’s leading NSA earner. He subsequently was voted the 2012 Eclipse Award as champion steeplechase horse.
The Lonesome Glory is named for five-time Eclipse Award winner Lonesome Glory, who accumulated more than $1-million in purse earnings and bonuses during his steeplechase racing career from 1991-1999. Owned by Kay Jeffords and trained by Bruce Miller, Lonesome Glory twice traveled overseas to England and scored historic victories at Cheltenham Race Course and Sandown. He was inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame in 2005.
William Entenmann III, a third-generation executive of the Long Island baking company that bears the family name, was a longtime steeplechase owner whose Timber Bay Stable raced New York Turf Writers Cup winners Yaw (1991 and 1992) and Bisbalense (1997). On the flat, Artie Schiller won the 2005 Breeders’ Cup Mile (Gr. 1) in the name of Timber Bay and Entenmann’s daughter Denise Walsh of Southern Pines, N.C. Timber Bay also bred 2002 Belmont Stakes (Gr. 1) winner Sarava. He died Jan. 1, 2012.