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Tuesday, January 2, 2018

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – RT’s Bo Jangles, one of the nation’s leading greyhounds in 2017, can pick up where he left off Wednesday night in qualifying for the 1925 Historical Inaugural Stakes at Derby Lane.

The 550-yard event carries an $18,000 purse, including $7,700 to the winner. It is the first of 12 stakes races at the track in 2018. The top four finishers in the two qualifiers, Races 6 (8:39 p.m.) and 10 (9:47), move on to the championship race on Saturday.

RT’s Bo Jangles, a standout for Cal Holland kennel, makes his first start of the new year in Race 6. The 33-month-old male from a litter by Kiowa Mon Manny and Penrose Karrie had a sensational 2017 with back-to-back Derby Lane win titles and a possible national win championship with 45 victories for the year (the overall leader will be announced soon).

Owned by Randy Toler of Penrose, Colo., RT’s Bo Jangles seeks his third consecutive stakes title following wins in the $10,000 Thanksgiving and $10,000 Howl-O-Ween in the final three months of 2017. He has won his past three starts, including a meet-tying effort of 30.22 seconds on the 550-yard course Saturday in his most recent outing.

RT’s Bo Jangles drew post 2. Other starters in Race 6 from the rail: John Valazquez (Capabal kennel), PJ Backoffme (Rangel), Fly J Kissantell (Lester Raines), CTW Party Animal (Clear The Way Kennels), O Ya Roughnready (D’Arcy), I Like Big Bucks (Abernathy) and Wall Nut (ABC Racing).

Barts Mr Peabody, winner of the $20,000 Gold Trophy Juvenile in 2016, drew the rail in Race 10. The 39-month-old male from a litter by Pat C Clement and Barts Autumn Sky represents Bartley Corporation, which claimed its first kennel win title at the recent July-to-December meet. The rest of the field in post-position order: Volando Orange (Burk Greyhounds), SE’s Wepon X (Nova), RS Money Hungry (Patriot), LK’s Blakeslee (Lashmet), Kaias Pogo (Floyd), TMC’s Moonbeam (Steubenville) and Flamenco Dancer (Farmer Racing). TMC’s Moonbeam seeks his second stakes title after taking the $50,000 Husker Magic Fall Sprint in September.

“(RT’s Bo Jangles) is in the toughest semifinal, especially with John Valazquez right next to him (in the starting box),’’ Derby Lane director of racing Les Robison said. “If he misses his break, it could be a little tough on him.

“The other semifinal is a little bit more wide open. Flamenco Dancer, out in the 8 hole, has got a definite advantage.’’

Alderson kennel won the 2017 edition of the 1925 Historical Inaugural with Bella Gigan. The operation no longer exists after long-time kennel owner Jan Alderson recently retired.

Don Jensen

I have been a sports writer in the newspaper industry for 40 years: working in Florida, Maryland and Virginia. I moved to Florida in 1984 after serving as the publicity director of Charles Town Race Track, a thoroughbred facility in West Virginia. I reside in Tampa, Fla., and cover the Tampa Bay area parimutuel scene – both greyhounds and thoroughbreds – and write about high school sports for the Tampa Bay Times.