Victor J. Coladonato, owner, breeder and trainer of Iron Legend, a son of Iron Peg, hit the jackpot yesterday at Pimlico when his only horse won the $30,000-added Woodlawn Stakes. It beat another longshot, Scotchman, in a driving finish.
Coladonato, veteran of more than 40 years on the track, sleeps in a remodeled hearse at Bowie Race Course. He bred the mare, Jenney Legend, to Iron Peg three years ago and has broken, groomed and trained the colt himself since it was born.
Iron Legend had won its last race at Keystone by four lengths over maidens. Yesterday's victory brought $23,302.50 to the lean Coladonato pocketbook. The elated racetracker added fuel to the unfolding Cinderalla story by saying, "We hope to come back for the Pzeakness. They gave us a stall at Bowie and it hope to ship here soon for the big one."
Jack Salter, an insurance salesman who handles much of the backstretch business at Bowie, said, "This man gave me my first start around the track 1952. He lives in that hearse and they gave him a stall at the crowded track that isn't even near the other horses. You could say that he is a kind of outcast and a guy whose stories they make movies about. It could happen to any of us."
Iron Legend beat Scotchman by a half length under Michael Sim and paid $27.20. The exacta with Scotchman was worth $1,038.80 on the numbers 1 and 5.