On Aug. 22 the Nobiz Like Shobiz colt returns to stretch out to seven furlongs and step up in company in the $100,000 Arlington-Washington Futurity (gr. III), departing from post 4 in a field of 13 with Chris Emigh up.
Charlie LoPresti said the two-time Horse of the Year moved closer to a likely start in the Sept. 13 Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Can-IT) with his third straight breeze on dirt.
Stryker Phd closed with a huge rally and soared clear to victory in the $200,000 Longacres Mile Handicap (gr. III) Aug. 16 at Emerald Downs, taking his home state's marquee race for a second year in a row.
Big Chief Racing's Exaggerator shipped in from California and put on a brave performance Aug. 16, splitting horses midstretch before surging to victory in the $200,000 Saratoga Special (gr. II) at Saratoga Race Course.
Interpol was the longest shot on the board but the first at the wire in the $200,000 Sky Classic Stakes (Can-IIT) at Woodbine, earning his first graded victory in his second attempt at that level Aug. 16.
Triple Crown champion American Pharoah turned in his first breeze since winning the Aug. 2 William Hill Haskell Invitational (gr. I) when he worked four furlongs in :47 3/5 Aug. 16 at Del Mar.
Sharla Rae rebounded from a disappointing seventh last time out in the Belmont Oaks Invitational Stakes (gr. IT), and notched her first graded victory with a win in the $300,000 Del Mar Oaks (gr. IT) Aug. 15 at Del Mar.
The 6-year-old English Channel gelding galloped to victory in the $1 million Arlington Million (gr. IT) Aug. 15 at Arlington International Racecourse, scoring the greatest victory of his career.
Highland Reel went gate-to-wire in the $450,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) Aug. 15 at Arlington International Racecourse, quickening away brilliantly after setting the pace to win by 5 1/4 lengths.
Just Wicked was content to let Tonasah set the pace in the $200,000 Adirondack Stakes (gr. II) Aug. 15 at Saratoga Race Course, but when it came down to a stirring stretch duel, the 2-year-old Tapit filly would not be denied.
Claire Novak and Frank Angst preview the Arlington Million (gr. IT) featuring Big Blue Kitten, Slumber, and Up With the Birds. Watch Video
Trainer Chad Brown has a hot hand for the Arlington Million (gr. IT) Aug. 15 at Arlington International Racecourse, which has drawn a motley crew of international contenders among 13 entered for the 2015 edition.
Undefeated Italian Derby winner (Ity-II) Goldstream will make his first start for Australian Bloodstock Aug. 15, when he faces Belmont Derby (gr. IT) victor Force the Pass in the $450,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT).
Terry Hamilton's Heart to Heart was all heart Aug. 2, showing the way throughout and carrying on to victory in the $150,000 Oceanport Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park.
Joseph Sutton's Bradester collected his first grade II victory and continued his success at Monmouth Park, coming off a score in the July 5 Salvator Mile Stakes (gr. III) to win the $200,000 Monmouth Cup Stakes (gr. II).
It took Rachel's Valentina a moment to figure out what this racing thing is all about, but once the 2-year-old filly found her stride, there was no stopping her en route to a sparkling debut victory Aug. 2 at Saratoga.
Those who questioned the class level of Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) winner Texas Red had to eat their words Aug. 1, as the son of Afleet Alex turned back Frosted in the $600,000 Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II).
Rock Fall continued his dazzling win streak and stepped up to the top level with a game performance in the $350,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (gr. I) Aug. 1 at Saratoga Race Course, edging grade I winner The Big Beast.
Arnold Zetcher's homebred Smart Transition picked up his first black type victory July 31 at Saratoga Race Course, kicking into gear off the turn and drawing away to win the $100,000 Curlin Stakes.
- By Claire Novak
Claire Novak and Frank Angst handicap the return of the Triple Crown winner, American Pharoah, in the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park. watch video
Darley America will no longer have a string at the Aiken Training Track near Aiken, S.C., and their operations there will shut down Sept. 1.
Stonestreet Stables' Rock Fall will face the grade I question for the first time Aug. 1 at Saratoga Race Course, when the streaking Todd Pletcher trainee takes on a field of six other accomplished runners.
La Verdad took the lead and never looked back July 29 in the $200,000 Honorable Miss Handicap (gr. II) at Saratoga Race Course, cruising gate to wire under jockey Jose Ortiz to preserve her perfect record this season.
Hard Not to Like came flying and secured her second consecutive grade I victory July 25, edging out Tepin in the final strides of the $500,000 TVG Diana Stakes (gr. IT) at Saratoga while setting a turf course record.
Triton Racing's Uchenna bided her time at the back of the pack and then pounced with a bold rail move July 25 to win the $150,000 Ontario Matron (Can-III), taking her first graded stakes for trainer Roger Attfield.
J. Stables' Off the Tracks went from maiden winner to stakes victress in just her second start July 24, taking the $150,000 Schuylerville Stakes (gr. III) in powerful fashion at Saratoga Race Course.
Claire Novak and Tom LaMarra discuss the Diana Stakes (gr. IT) featuring Tepin, Hard Not to Like, and Stephanie's Kitten. Watch Video
Robert Masterson's Tepin will take on Hard Not to Like July 25 in the $500,000 TVG Diana Stakes (gr. I), both last-out grade I winners looking to add another event of the highest caliber to their resumes.
Grade III winner Went the Day Well, who finished fourth in the 2012 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), has arrived in Uruguay and will stand for Las Zainas Farm, according to bloodstock agent Pablo Nunez.
The $150,000 Schuylerville Stakes (gr. III) kicks off the action at Saratoga Race Course July 24 as part of a loaded opening day card.
A third time might be the charm for Westrock Stables' Sky Kingdom, back for yet another run in the $100,000 Cougar II Handicap (gr. III) at Del Mar after finishing second the past two years in a row.
Tiz Shea D tracked the pace set by Ohio Derby winner Mr. Z and then ran him down with a sweeping outside move to victory in the $500,000 Indiana Derby (gr. II), despite being floated wide around the turn by his erratic rival.
Midnight Cello earned his first graded stakes score and first victory of the season in style July 18, taking the $100,000 Hanshin Cup Stakes (gr. III) at Arlington International Racecourse with a bold early move up the rail.
If Take Charge Brandi aces her comeback in the Aug. 8 Test Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga against her own division, a run against the boys could be possible in the Aug. 29 Travers Stakes (gr. I), said owner Willis Horton.
- By Claire Novak
Claire Novak comments on two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan's breeze at Keeneland on July 17, 2015, while the champion takes a bath in the background. Watch Video
Two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan wasted no time getting back to business after being cleared to resume full training June 30, as trainer Charlie LoPresti sent him out to his first breeze in more than eight months July 17.
- By Claire Novak
Claire Novak and Frank Angst handicap the Eddie Read stakes in the opening weekend for Del Mar. watch video
None of the eight runners entered in the $200,000 Kent Stakes (gr. IIIT) has made it to graded status yet, but the winner will walk away with that distinction July 18 at Delaware Park.
Jockey Rajiv Maragh was released from North Shore Hospital July 13 and is resting at home near Hempstead, N.Y., after sustaining several injuries in a July 10 fall at Belmont Park.
Lady Eli preserved her perfect record and dazzled in the $1 million Belmont Oaks Invitational (gr. IT) July 4, collecting the second grade I stakes score of her career in dominant fashion at Belmont Park.
Richard Santulli's Force the Pass delivered a career-best performance July 4 in the $1.25 million Belmont Derby Invitational (gr. IT) at Belmont Park, making a powerful rail-skimming move heading into the far turn.
Derek Ryan's Irish Jasper continued a three-race win streak and earned her second grade III in a row July 4, closing with a wide rally and drawing away in the $150,000 Victory Ride Stakes (gr. III) at Belmont Park.
Force proved one to be reckoned with in the $150,000 New York Derby at Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack July 3, upsetting at odds of 13-1 to give trainer Mark Casse his second win in the New York Derby.
- By Claire Novak
- Thoroughbred Racing, Northeast Region, Mid-Atlantic Region, Breeders' Cup, Triple Crown
Owner Ahmed Zayat has decided the $1 million Haskell Invitational (gr. I) on Aug. 2 will be the Triple Crown winner's first start after a historic 5 1/2-length triumph in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
Hutcheson Stakes (gr. III) winner Barbados will waste no time getting back to business July 5, when he makes his first start off the layup in the $150,000 Carry Back Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park.
Champion Main Sequence takes on talented grade I-winning rivals such as Slumber, Twilight Eclipse, 2013 United Nations victor Big Blue Kitten, and Imagining when seeking to defend his title in the United Nations (gr. IT).
Race Day, winner of the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) and Razorback Handicap (gr. III) in consecutive graded scores, is the 123-pound highweight for the $150,000 Salvator Mile (gr. III) July 5 at Monmouth Park.
Claire Novak and Tom LaMarra handicap the Belmont Derby Invitational at Belmont Park. Will the international contenders spoil the locals and how will Bolo perform? watch video
Tonalist will find himself in easier company July 4 than he did last time out, with only five to tackle and not another grade I winner in the bunch in the $500,000 Suburban Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park.
The top three finishers from the May 25 Mike Lee Stakes at Belmont Park will meet again July 3 in the New York Derby at Finger Lakes.
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