Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Blame has been judged the best horse to race in North America during 2010 by the compilers of the World Thoroughbred Rankings, unveiled in London, England, on Tuesday, Jan. 11.
Delegator, who is due to represent Godolphin in the TVG Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) on Saturday, Nov. 6, at Churchill Downs, has had a quarter crack this week.
The turf course at Churchill Downs was the center of attention for some European trainers and jockeys of horses entered in the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
After the tremendous success of European horses in the last two Breeders'Cup World Championships at Santa Anita in California, it is back to the stark reality of racing in America at Churchill Downs in 2010.
Kieren Fallon, the six-time champion jockey of Britain, was struck in the face by an owner of another horse following a seven-furlong race on Polytrack at Lingfield Park, England, on Saturday, March 20.
Jockey Tom Queally won the award for "Flat Ride of the Year" at the annual Lesters in Britain Feb. 28 for his performance on Midday in the Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) at Santa Anita.
A battle over imposed cuts to wages and expenses by the Turf Club in Ireland means that race day officials are planning to strike on Sunday, Feb. 28.
Zenyatta and Rachel Alexandra, instead of being joint fourth and fifth, respectively, in the final global standings for 2009, should be third and fourth.
Zenyatta has received another boost, with the 2009 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner rated one pound ahead of Rachel Alexandra in the World Thoroughbred Rankings.
The long-awaited first initiatives from the Britain's much-debated Racing For Change program that were announced Jan. 5 are small steps toward making racing more understandable and fun, according to organizers.
The Breeders' Cup World Championships success last year of five European-trained horses at Santa Anita Park really made everybody sit up and take notice. There were a record 31 European-trained raiders in 2008 and the number is set to be matched or even surpassed this year.
Sea The Stars, who secured his place among racing's all-time greats when he powered his way to a thrilling two-length victory over Youmzain in the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-I) Oct. 4, has been retired to stud.
The Aga Khan, one of Europe's major owner/breeders, has signed up Christophe Lemaire as his new retained rider in France for 2010, replacing Christophe Soumillon.
British horseracing's finances will take a knock following the news that the UK's two biggest bookmaking firms are to move their Internet betting operations offshore.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Cannonball nearly provided the perfect end to a dream week for American trainer Wesley Ward on the final day of the five-day Royal Ascot meeting June 20, when missing out by a neck in the Golden Jubilee Stakes (Eng-I).
Just 24 hours earlier, trainer Wesley Ward had warned that Jealous Again was much better than his historic Windsor Castle Stakes winner Strike The Tiger and on June 17 the 2-year-old Trippi filly proved these were not empty words when bolting from the gate to go clear of her rivals in the five-furlong Queen Mary Stakes (Eng-II) at Royal Ascot before kicking on again for an easy five-length victory.
History was made in the June 16 Windsor Castle Stakes (Eng-Listed) over five furlongs on good to firm turf on the first day of Royal Ascot, when 33-1 Strike The Tiger became the first ever American-trained horse to win at the meeting when holding on by a neck to beat Fratellino.
Vincent O'Brien, widely acknowledged as the greatest European trainer ever, died June 1 at the age of 92 at his home in Straffan, Co. Kildare, Ireland
Several stakeholding groups have found plenty of room for improvement in how to market horseracing to the British public.
The horse they call the "Hungarian Seabiscuit" will put his unbeaten record on the line in top group I sprints in Europe this summer.
Well Armed, winner of the world's richest race, the US$6-million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I), on March 28, has his official rating put up 5 pounds, from 119 to 124, making the best dirt horse currently racing.
Turf Flat racing resumed in Ireland at the Curragh on Sunday, March 22, but probably more significant was Aidan O'Brien's decision to work 48 horses on the course after racing.
Vendors and sales companies involved in the seven breeze-up sales for 2-year-olds in Britain, Ireland and France over the next three months have got together and announced a £500,000 bonus scheme to tempt buyers.
A British charity - the Royal British Legion which helps ex-armed forces personnel - would have benefited by £2,755,923 if a steeplechaser called Big Fella Thanks had won the valuable Racing Post Chase at Kempton Park, England, on Saturday, Feb. 21.
A giant sculpture of a white Thoroughbred, 164 feet tall, will dominate one of the main entrances to Britain in three year's time after Mark Wallinger's design for an artwork at Ebbsfleet in Kent was announced the winner of a competition.
Britain's newest racecourse Great Leighs, which opened in April of 2008 , had its licence withdrawn by the British Horseracing Authority on Jan. 16 and later that day went into administration, the equivalent of a receivership.
Curlin, the all-time earner among North American Thoroughbreds, gained another accolade on Tuesday, Jan. 13 when he was officially named the joint best horse of 2008 in the World Thoroughbred Rankings.
Hayley Turner, who became the first female jockey to ride 100 winners in a year in Britain on Dec. 30, wants to ride better quality horses in higher-profile races during 2009.
Tattersalls' December sale ended quietly in England with a breeding stock session in which a 3-year-old colt, sold as a jumping prospect, topped trade at 65,000 guineas. The other figures for Dec. 4 were 139 horses sold, a gross of 656,650 guineas, an average price of 4,724 guineas, and a median price of 2,800 guineas. During the four-day breeding stock portion of the December auction, the 610 horses that sold grossed 33,355,150 guineas and averaged 54,681 guineas. The median was 12,500 guineas.
Sheikh Mohammed topped trade at the Tattersalls December breeding stock sale for a third consecutive day, paying 1.8 million guineas for Lady Marian (by Nayef), winner of this year's Prix de l'Opera (Fr-I), Dec. 3 in England.
Sheikh Mohammed's bloodstock manager, John Ferguson, bought the most expensive horse at the Tattersalls December breeding stock sale for the second day in a row. He spent 1.7 million guineas for French listed winner Princesse Dansante (by King's Best) Dec. 2 in England.
Trainer Jim Bolger's dual group I-winning Saoirse Abu was the star of the opening session of the Tattersalls December breeding stock auction in England, selling for 1.95 million guineas (about $3.1 million) to Sheikh Mohammed's bloodstock manager, John Ferguson. The 3-year-old daughter of Mr. Greeley scored in the Independent Waterford Wedgwood Phoenix (Ire-I) and Moyglare Stud (Ire-I) Stakes in 2007.
Tattersalls' five-day December foal ended in England Nov. 29 with figures sharply down from 2007's results. The 14,549,100-guinea gross fell 49% while the 25,888-guinea average price declined 29%. The 8,750-guinea median price dropped 56%. Sixty percent of the weanlings offered found new homes.
A Monsun filly out of group I Prix Vermeille winner Sweet Stream topped the trading Nov. 28 at the Tattersalls December Foal Sale when selling for 440,000 guineas to agent John Ferguson.
There were three six-figure lots as trade stepped up a gear at the Nov. 27 third foal session of the Tattersalls December Sale in Newmarket. The day's top price of 180,000 guineas was paid by pinhooker Timmy Hyde of Camas Park Stud in Co Tipperary Ireland for a Galileo colt.
Trade was selective at Tattersalls' one-day December yearling sale in England Nov. 24, with a clearance rate of 55% for the 103 lots that changed hands.
Trade stepped up a gear on day two of the Goffs November foal sale in Ireland. The average price was down only 10% from the corresponding session a year ago.
The five European Breeders' Cup winners missed out on trophies at the Cartier Racing Awards, Europe's equivalent of the Eclipse Awards, which were presented in London Nov. 17.
There was a clearance rate of just 25% on the opening day of Goffs' November foal sale at Kill, Ireland when 48 of the 193 lots offered were listed as sold. The gross for Nov. 17 was 300,800 euros, and the average price was 6,267 euros.
Goffs' seven-day November Sale gets under way at Kill, Co. Kildare, Ireland Nov. 16. There are 1,281 lots catalogued for the foal section running from Nov. 16 to Nov. 20, with trade likely to be highly selective from wary pinhookers before the better offerings appear later in the week.
- By Mark Popham
A poor renewal of Book 4 of the Tattersalls October yearling sale in England generated a gross of only 130,300 guineas, down 73% from last year for the 50 horses sold. The average price of 2,606 guineas dropped 50%, and the 1,450-guinea median fell 43%. Only 45% of the lots offered were listed as sold.
Tattersalls' largest ever horses in training sale finished Oct. 30 in England with downturns even though international trade was strong.
A lively trade at Tattersalls' Autumn Horses In Training Sale continued in Newmarket Oct. 29 when Great Voltigeur Stakes (Eng-II) runner-up Top Lock (GB) (Nayef) sold for 410,000 guineas to Saudi agent Saad Al Kahtani.
The European public auction record for a colt or gelding in training was eclipsed Oct. 29 when 4-year-old Sugar Ray sold for 600,000 guineas at the Tattersalls October horses in training sale at Newmarket, England.
The Arquana October Yearling sale had strong support from French buyers but still experienced across-the-board declines for key statistics.
There are two British-trained challengers in the Breeders' Cup Marathon, a new race this year over 1 1/2 miles on the main track at Santa Anita Oct. 25.
Breeders' Cup, in a bold move to make the event even more international, has been actively seeking a sponsor to underwrite all shipping costs for overseas-trained horses, and maybe also pay for their trainers, owners, jockeys and grooms to fly to America, as well.
European trainers discussed the strengths of their Breeders' Cup contenders, the largest number from overseas since 1994. Several said they would not have made the trip if the main track had a dirt instead of a synthetic surface.
Dual listed stakes winner Alfie Flits headed Doncaster's October horses in training sale Oct. 22 when selling for £95,000 ($162,133) to trainer Jennie Candlish as a dual-purpose prospect.
- By Mark Popham
Book 3 of Tattersalls' October yearling sale finished in England Oct. 17 with a 10,389-guinea average price, down 33% from last year, and a 7,000-guinea median price, which represented a 36% decline. The 271 horses that sold (from 414 offered) grossed 2,815,300 guineas.
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