The spring meet at Churchill Downs, the first race meet since the completion of its ambitious $121 million renovation, ended its 52-day run on Sunday with double-digit gains in on-track attendance and wagering and a slight decline in off-track betting.
Afleet Alex, the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) and Preakness (gr. I) champion, recorded his first official workout in more than a month Sunday morning when he breezed five furlongs over Belmont Park's fast main track in 1:00 4/5.
Deputy G, ridden by Gary Stevens, overcame a stumble at the start and turned back the stretch rally by R Loyal Man for a half-length victory in the $176,250 grade III Bashford Manor Stakes for 2-year-olds, the closing day feature at Churchill Downs.
Graded stakes winner Mass Market was represented by his first winner when his daughter Marquetry Rose scored July 8 at Hastings Racecourse.
Godolphin's champion Shamardal, who was retired from racing the eve of the July 2 Coral-Eclipse Stakes (Eng-I) because of a leg injury, will begin his stallion career at Darley Australia in the Hunter Valley region of Australia this year.
Harris Farms' homebred Alphabet Kisses broke late but quickly recovered to post a front-running three-length victory Saturday in the A Gleam Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park.
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