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Originally published Sunday, August 5, 2012 at 8:33 PM

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Longacres Mile draws strong list of 26 nominees

Awesome Gem, a 9-year-old gelding who has won more than $2.8 million, is one of eight grades stakes winners who were nominated for the $200,000 Longacres Mile at Emerald Downs.

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Defending champion Awesome Gem highlights a strong group of 26 nominees for the 77th running of the Grade III Longacres Mile, the signature horse race in the Northwest.

Awesome Gem, a 9-year-old gelding who has won more than $2.8 million, is one of eight graded stakes winners who were nominated for the $200,000 race at Emerald Downs in Auburn on Aug. 19.

Several horses from Southern California were nominated, including Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert's Hoorayforhollywood and the John Sadler-trained Gladding.

Several horses from Emerald Downs and Hastings Racecourse were nominated, including multiple 2012 stakes winners Winning Machine and Taylor Said.

Hudson Landing, a Grade III winner on turf at Golden Gate Fields, was also nominated. He proved himself locally by winning the Mt. Rainier Handicap on July 22.

Jim Penney, trainer of a record five Mile winners, nominated Jebrica, who won last year's Emerald Downs Derby.

If more than 12 horses are entered, the 12 highest-weighted horses will be preferred. Weights are announced Saturday. The entry deadline was midnight Sunday, so there was a slight possibility of late nominees after press time.

Wenzel goes 1-2

As expected, trainer Tom Wenzel's two fillies dominated Sunday's $50,000 Angie C. Stakes at Emerald Downs. Goin to the Window made it 2 for 2 in her career by wearing down stablemate Blueberry Smoothie by 1 length in the 6-furlong race.

Goin to the Window paid $4 to win. Blueberry Smoothie was the second choice at 7-5, and she was 10 ½ lengths clear of Valid Vixen Queen, who finished third. The winning time was 1 minute, 9.01 seconds.

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