Two noses were all that separated the first three finishers in a desperate finish to Sunday's $100,000 Oceanport Handicap (gr. IIIT). Gulch Approval, ridden by Pat Day, eked out a victory over favored Kathir and Stormy Roman on the grass at Monmouth Park.
Moyglare Stud Farm's Where We Left Off found another gear in the final sixteenth of a mile, surging past the comfortably leading Mrs. M for a one-length triumph in the $100,000 Matchmaker Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares on the Monmouth Park turf Sunday.
Smarty Jones' retirement left the door open for a new 3-year-old division leader and Lion Heart busted through, winning the $1 million Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I) in fine fashion at Monmouth Park Sunday.
It was no surprise that an Argentine-bred won the $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Handicap (gr. II) Sunday at Del Mar, although a bit shocking that it wasn't favored Star Parade. Instead it was Miss Loren, the longest shot in the field who circled the front-runners in mid-stretch with jockey Jon Court and won going away by 3 1/4 lengths.
Trainer Aidan O'Brien's bid for a seventh straight Phoenix Stakes (Ire-I) for 2-year-olds at The Curragh came up short when unbeaten Damson, ridden by Kieren Fallon, beat a pair of of O'Brien-trained competitors.
The Two Bit Racing Stable's A Bit O'Gold and trainer Catherine Day Phillips made history at Woodbine on Sunday in winning the $500,000 Breeders' Stakes, the third leg in the Canadian Triple Crown for 3-year-olds.
The Todd Pletcher-trained Purge, gobbled up speed merchant Medallist on the far turn and romped to victory in the $500,000 Jim Dandy (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Saratoga Race Course Sunday.
Jockey Gary Stevens earned his first group I victory in France Sunday at Deauville when the English-trained Somnus held on by a neck over favored Whipper in the Prix Maurice de Gheest (Fr-I) at Deauville Sunday.
- By Jack Shinar
Seawolf Stables, a unique fundraising endeavor for Sonoma State University athletics, got off to a noteworthy debut when its 2-year-old gelding Irish Dodger finished a surprising second at odds of 29-1 Aug. 7 in his first start at Santa Rosa.
The Fair Grounds and Louisiana horsemen reached a $25 million settlement over video poker purse revenue Aug. 7.
Graded stakes winners Intidab and Millions were represented by their first winners Aug. 7.
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