News

Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

Charming Colony Needs Fast Pace in Palm Beach

If there is one thing Charming Colony needs in Friday's $100,000 Palm Beach Stakes (gr. IIIT) it is a fast pace. If he gets it in the 1 1/8-mile turf test then his trainer Vinnie Blengs believes he will win the race.

Owner Sells Stake in Turf Paradise

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Jerry Simms, who purchased Turf Paradise in January 2000 for a reported $53-55 million, sold his stake in the Phoenix racetrack Tuesday. Simms was forced to sell the track by state regulators after the Arizona Department of Racing revoked his licence in October 2001.

Showboat Re-Files Lawsuit Against Penn National

Showboat Development has reportedly re-filed in Pennsylvania a lawsuit related to the operating rights of slot machines at Charles Town Races. A similar lawsuit filed in Nevada last year was dismissed Jan. 25 because of a lack of jurisdiction.

Tattersalls to Grade, Limit October Yearling Sale

Tattersalls' October yearling sale, which will take place this year Oct. 15-19, will be presented under a new format. The Newmarket, England-based auctioneers will alter the format of the sale by offering the stronger lots on the opening two days and continuing to grade the sale until its conclusion.

NYRA Plans to Make New Pitch for NYCOTB

Despite plans by the new mayor of New York City to delay the sale of New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., the head of the New York Racing Association said he will make a new pitch to purchase the lucrative corporation.

Moisture Said to Help Santa Anita Racing Surface

A little rain and a new approach to help retain moisture in the main track at Santa Anita Park seems to have addressed some gripes aired the week of Feb. 11 by jockeys about conditions at the Arcadia, Calif., facility.

Kentucky Officials Put Finishing Touches on VLT Bill

Racing industry officials in Kentucky met for a few hours the evening of Feb. 18 to wrap up loose ends on legislation that would authorize video lottery terminals at racetracks in the state. Officials are tentatively scheduled to meet with leaders in the House of Representatives Feb. 20.

Frankel Buys 3-Year-Old Colt for Gann

Since the injury to Edmund Gann's Labamta Babe, Bobby Frankel has been searching for another 3-year-old colt to possibly bring him and Gann back on the Kentucky Derby trail. Once again it was former trainer Mark Reid who came through for him with his recommendation he buy Medaglia D'Oro, a 4 1/4-length winner of a six-furlong maiden race at Oaklawn Park on Feb. 9.

Graded Stakes Winners Cap Frankel's Banner Year

Trainer Bopbby Frankel had a year in which his earnings of $14,987,446 took second billing to his remarkable string of graded stakes victories. It was impressive enough that he saddled 13 horses to win 18 grade I stakes, but what was really remarkable was that 16 of those grade I stakes came in the last six months of the year--three each in July, August, September, and October, and two each in November and December.

Why Not Take the Jump?

By Evan I. Hammonds -- The history of legalized gambling in the United States is a study of cyclical boom and bust. Where is America's mood today on the high seas of betting? It's riding the crest of the wave.

Fifteen Minutes of Infamy

By Ray Paulick -- With racing broadcasts taking a backseat to other sports on ESPN, producers should be prepared for an altered time period.

Eclipse Award Came Quickly for Owner Englander

Success in sports sometimes can come quickly or take a long time. Richard A. Englander acquired his first horse by way of a claim in the fall of 1998 and didn't stop there. In 1999, his runners topped the $1.2-million mark in earnings while making 407 starts.

Blue Moon Shines in Buena Vista

Blue Moon finally found racing room in the final yards and ran down Queen of Wilshire for a neck victory Monday in the $150,000 Buena Vista Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares at Santa Anita Park.

Bargain Filly Sizzles to Eclipse Award Honors

The year 2001 was a hot one for anyone trying to keep pace with Xtra Heat. The bargain-basement $5,000 purchase brought attention to the oft-neglected sprint filly division by her domination of her rivals week in and week out, then nearly shook the industry to the core when she just failed to pull off a major upset at the World Thoroughbred Championships in the Penske Auto Center Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I).

Rose Emerges as Top Apprentice

His first trip to a racetrack came in 1999. As an apprentice rider the following year, he would win with his very first mount. In a short but very successful career, things have come easy for Jeremy Rose.

Fifth Eclipse Award For Bailey

It's safe to say that Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey had a good year in 2001. Not only did he win 44 graded stakes races, 14 of which were grade I, he also ended the year as North America's leading rider by earnings and won his fifth Eclipse Award as outstanding jockey.

Posthumous Eclipse to Steeplechaser Pompeyo

The crazy, mixed-up world of the race for the 2001 steeplechase Eclipse Award took a tragic turn on Jan. 19 when Pompeyo died due to complications from an injury suffered in September. In the voting, however, he became a fitting winner. "In my heart, he deserves it the most because he hasn't been beaten," said the horse's trainer, Sanna Neilson, who conditioned all three Eclipse Award finalists for Augustin Stable.

Champion Fantastic Light Shines Around the World

Long before Fantastic Light ever stepped on a racetrack, the employees of Sheikh Maktoum al Maktoum's Gainsborough Farm in Kentucky knew that the son of Rahy was going to be special. Watching him romp in the pasture with other yearlings, they were impressed by his fiery spirit and desire to dominate.

Champion Tempera: A Good One For Harty

It's only fitting that Tempera is the first horse to represent trainer Eoin G. Harty with an Eclipse Award. The daughter of A.P. Indy gave Harty his first career stakes win on Aug. 4, 2001, when she romped to a nine-length victory in the Sorrento Stakes (gr. II) at Del Mar.

Johannesburg Conquered the World in Championship Campaign

Johannesburg proved to be a citizen of the world in 2001. The bay colt raced twice in England, once in France, three times in Ireland, and once in the United States. One other thing--he won all seven times. Perfect on the racetrack, Johannesburg easily outdistanced his rivals and was named the 2-year-old male Eclipse Award winner.

One Big Win Earns Eclipse Award for Banks Hill

Juddmonte Farms' Banks Hill made only one of her seven 2001 starts in the United States, but she made it count in a big way. She went one-for-one with a stunning victory in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) against many of the top horses in her division.

Squirtle Squirt Sprints to Eclipse Award

The racetrack is the great equalizer. Breeders' Cup Day 2001 hammered home that point. On racing's biggest day, not only did some of the game's heaviest hitters--like Sheikh Mohammed, Juddmonte Farms, and members of the Coolmore group--win races, but so, too, did David Lanzman.

Champion Gourmet Girl Adds to Cee's Tizzy's Success

Tiznow isn't the only grade I-winning or millionaire offspring by Cee's Tizzy. Gourmet Girl, one of only two older females to win two grade I races on dirt in 2001, is also by the California sire. Gourmet Girl and two of her top divisional rivals, Lazy Slusan and Tranquility Lake, were 6-year-olds in 2001. All three were based in California, but Gourmet Girl and Lazy Slusan appeared to be gunning for each other, meeting four times during the first half of the year.

Triple Crown Success Pushes Point Given to the Top

Point Given was admired by just about everyone associated with horse racing in 2001. Turf writers were at a loss for adjectives and handicappers returned to the old adage, "If you can't beat him, join him," making him the betting favorite in all seven of his starts. Even casual racing fans got excited about the horse affectionately called "The Big Red Train" and went in droves to local tracks for a chance to watch racing's newest superstar.

Tiznow Shows Championship Mettle for Second Year in Row

The eyes are the windows of the soul. That has been said many times, but on Oct. 27 the racing world saw proof of it. For the second year in a row, we witnessed the same fire being lit in the eyes of Tiznow. And for the second year in a row, we were provided a rare look into the soul of a Thoroughbred. And for the second year in a row, Tiznow has captured an Eclipse Award and become a champion.

Princess Enjoys a Treat at Aqueduct

The Thoroughbred Corporation's People's Princess rallied to post a 1 1/4 -length victory in Monday's 30th running of the grade III, $108,600 Rare Treat Handicap for fillies and mares 3 years old and up at Aqueduct.

Bold Upset at Gulfstream Park

Bold World took the lead in the far turn and ran away from the field to win the $71,000 Dame Mysterieuse Stakes for 3-year-old fillies Monday at Gulfstream Park.

Wrangler Lassos General George Field

Stronach Stable's Wrangler moved on the outside as the field left the turn and headed into the stretch and went on to an easy victory in the General George Stakes (gr. II) that highlighted Monday's President's Day card at Laurel Park.

Rally for Randy at Arlington Park

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Arlington Park has established a "Rally For Randy" Fund to assist former jockey Randy Romero who is undergoing kidney dialysis while awaiting a transplant. Arlington will initiate the fundraising effort with a $2,000 donation and invites all other racetracks to participate in the effort.

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