Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie had its single greatest on-track wagering day Saturday when 17,878 customers wagered a track record $3,412,562 on 12 live races and simulcasts across the country, including the 130th Kentucky Derby (gr. I) won by Smarty Jones.
Vicky Baze, the third all-time leading female rider with more than 1,500 victories, returned to racing on Sunday at Emerald Downs with a fifth-place finish aboard Crystal Mt. Stevie in a $14,000 allowance race.
A distant fourth in last month's Fantasy Stakes (gr. II), Elusive Diva found the field and a cutback in distance a little more to her liking Sunday, winning a tight four-horse decision in the $109,600 Railbird (gr. III) at seven furlongs for 3-year-old fillies at Hollywood Park.
Favored Gamut found racing room in the final quarter-mile and galloped on powerfully under Kieren Fallon to record a 1 1/4-length win over Systematic in Sunday's Jockey Club Stakes (Eng-II) at Newmarket.
The third time was the charm for 7-year-old Execute in Sunday's Prix Ganay (Fr-I) at Longchamp after finishing second in the race the past two years.
While some trainers felt the off-track conditions played a role in the lack of competitiveness for some horses in Saturday's Kentucky Derby (gr. I), there was a general consensus that the best horse won.
Just days before the running of the $160,800 Vigil Stakes (Can-III), trainer Mike Keogh termed Mobil a "forgotten horse." Not after the 4-year-old colt's superb 2004 debut Saturday at Woodbine.
NBC Sports' broadcast of Smarty Jones' win at the 130th Kentucky Derby on Saturday (5-6:45 p.m. ET) delivered an 8.3 overnight rating and an 18 share -- tying the numbers for NBC's 2001 and 2002 Derby telecasts as the highest-rated since 1992 (9.5/26 on ABC) and giving NBC the three best Kentucky Derby overnight ratings of the past 12 years, according to Nielsen Media Research.
Pie's Lil Brother won Saturday's $50,000 Prairie Express at Prairie Meadows for the second straight year, holding off Coach Jimi Lee and Sand Ridge in a photo finish.
Leroidesanimaux won for the third consecutive time and broke a course record in the process when he went gate-to-wire Saturday to win the $110,900 Inglewood Handicap (gr. IIIT) by two lengths at Hollywood Park.
Although rain continued to fall in Louisville, Ky. Sunday morning, trainer John Servis basked in the glow of a Kentucky Derby (gr. I) victory Saturday by Someday Farm's Smarty Jones.
Total wagering on the 130th Kentucky Derby and the Derby Day racing card at Churchill Downs smashed North American records for total betting on an individual event and a single day of races that had been established in the 2003 renewal of the famed "Run for the Roses."
Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Smarty Jones will return to Philadelphia Park in the next few days, where he will prepare for the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), the second leg of the Triple Crown, assuming he came ouf of the Derby in top shape.
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