Kentucky Derby (gr. I) runner-up and Clark Handicap (gr. II) contender Aptitude led a parade of candidates for Churchill Downs' closing weekend stakes races who turned in workouts over the Louisville track on Monday and Tuesday. Aptitude breezed six furlongs in 1:15 over a "fast" track on Tuesday. Jockey Joe Deegan was aboard for the move, which came just after the mid-morning break for track maintenance.
By John W. Russell -- One of the benefits of training for as long as I did is that I often see the progeny of some of my horses race to distinction--rather like a proud parent. Certainly watching Tiznow's brilliant performance in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) was the next best thing to having trained him, and particularly pleasing since I trained both his parents.
By Ray Paulick -- Our least favorite career politician, Gov. Gray Davis of California (who in late September vetoed every piece of racing legislation he could get his hands on, including a critical account wagering bill), finally may have done something good for the Thoroughbred industry.
The first online RNA auction for November started without any horses selling. Keeneland's next Internet auction is Wednesday with two more to follow.
Magna Entertainment Corp. reported an increase in revenue, but losses in earnings and net income for the its third quarter ending Sept. 30. The company also loses its second top executive in a month.
Stakes winner Slew the Slewor, a half-brother to French champion and successful sire Groom Dancer, has arrived for stallion duty at Elizabeth Mateo's Premier Sporthorses near Alpharetta, Ga.
Millionaire Bourbon Belle has been retired from racing following surgery at Hagyard-Davidson-McGee Associates near Lexington.
Grade I winner Honest Lady, who closed out her career with a runner-up effort in the Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I), has arrived at Khalid Abdullah's Juddmonte Farms near Lexington.
Racing and breeding news and information.
Citing competition for the Midwest wagering dollar from the reopening of Arlington Park, Louisiana Downs reported declines in total and on-track handle and a nominal decrease in attendance during the meet that ended Sunday.
Hialeah Park announced that it will run its 2001 meet – scheduled for March 17 through May 22 – at its home track. Hialeah ran its 2000 meet as a lessee at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, and reported gains in attendance and handle as compared to its 1999 meet, run at Hialeah.
Tampa Bay Downs may be headed for another contract dispute with the local Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association for the second consecutive year.
The Ontario Jockey Club and the Pacific Racing Association have reached an agreement concerning the formation of a partnership, but other details must be worked out before the deal can be finalized.
A single no-guarantee season to leading sire Storm Cat brought $500,000 to top the Stallion Access auction at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky's Newtown Paddocks Nov. 10. The top price was $100,000 above the scheduled fee of $400,000 next year for the stallion, who stands at W.T. Young's Overbrook Farm near Lexington.
Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach recently said Magna's racetracks would withdraw their membership from the National Thoroughbred Racing Association at the end of the year, joining 15 other tracks, including a coalition from the Mid-Atlantic region. Stronach took exception to a subsequent editorial in the Nov. 4 edition of The Blood-Horse suggesting he had "turned his back" on fellow owners and breeders through his decision, and he requested an opportunity to explain his position. He was interviewed by editor-in-chief Ray Paulick during the Keeneland sales on Nov. 8.
Juddmonte Farms' homebred Senure rallied from last in the field of eight to win the $76,450 Steinlen Handicap by a half-length Sunday at Hollywood Park.
The fields for several Thanksgiving weekend stakes races are beginning to shape up, as many horses from Breeders' Cup races will return to the races.
Wednesday at Laurel Park
Dane Friendly earned his first career win, drawing off to a three-length win in the Premio Ribot (Ity-II) Sunday in Rome at the Campannelle. Over heavy turf, Dane Friendly completed the one-mile in 1:44.
Trainer Ken McPeek said Alcibiades Stakes (gr. II) winner She's A Devil Due, who finished third in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), will bypass the $200,000 Golden Rod Stakes (gr. II) November 25 at Churchill Downs. Instead, the conditioner said the 2-year-old daughter of Devil His Due will be given some time off and be pointed toward a spring campaign.
In his first race since May of 1999, 1998 Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) winner Reraise led at every call to win an allowance race by 1 1/2 lengths Sunday at Hollywood Park.
Sunday at Laurel Park
1998 Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) winner Reraise returns from an 18-month layoff to run in a six-furlong allowance race Sunday at Hollywood Park. The Craig Dollase-trained 5-year-old gelding has won seven of eight career starts and will be ridden by Corey Nakatnai.
Elaine C. Bassford's 5-year-old Dynamic Trick earned his first graded stakes win at Laurel Park Saturday, when he held off the late rush of betting favorite Adcat to win the Laurel Turf Cup Stakes (gr. IIIT) by a neck in a blanket finish.
Zillah the Hun tracked early leader I'madrifter into the stretch, inherited the lead inside the final furlong as that rival veered in at the sixteenth-pole and fell after hitting the inside rail, and held off the late charge of Jumron Won to win the $97,500 California Juvenile Stakes (gr. III) by 1 1/2 lengths Saturday at Bay Meadows.
lliquidity moved into contention while wide on the second turn and swept to the lead in the stretch to win the $176,100 Cardinal Handicap (gr. IIIT) by a half-length Saturday at Churchill Downs.
Gary A. Tanaka's Moonlady, making her first North American start, tracked the early leaders before gaining a commanding lead on the second turn to win the $150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. III) by three lengths over Playact Saturday at Aqueduct as horses who last raced in Europe filled the top two finishing positions.
John's Call, thoroughbred racing's distinguished senior citizen, will be vanned to New York Tuesday from Tom Voss's farm in Maryland for a flight to Tokyo and an engagement in the Japan Cup.
Oklahoman John C. Oxley paid $975,000 for a Tale of the Cat weanling filly to top Friday's session of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale.
Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner War Chant may race next at Hollywood Park in the $500,000 Early Times Hollywood Derby Nov. 26, according to trainer Neil Drysdale.
Saturday at Churchill Downs
Robert and Beverly Lewis' Chilean-bred mare Miss of Wales will attempt to earn her first North American stakes win in the $150,000 Cardinal Handicap (gr. IIIT) Saturday at Churchill Downs. Also entered in the 1 1/8-mile turf race for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up are Ballston Spa Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) winner License Fee, Noble Damsel Handicap (gr. IIIT) winner Gino's Spirits, and multiple stakes winners Illiquidity, White Beauty, and Lady Tamworth.
With Meadowlands set to close its barn area with the conclusion of its meet on November 18, thus eliminating winter racetrack stabling for New Jersey-based outfits, and Delaware Park about to conclude its 148-day season, the racing office at Philadelphia Park has been inundated with stall applications, of which it can only accommodate a small fraction.
Canterbury Park's card room has substantially increased operating revenue, net income, and earnings for the Minnesota track's third quarter ending Sept. 30.
Graded stakes winner Adcat, a son of Storm Cat who has $415,597 in earnings, will enter stud for $5,000 live foal at Michael Sherman's Farnsworth Farms near Ocala, Fla.
Following a four-hour meeting Thursday with representatives of racetracks that have announced plans to defect from the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Churchill Downs president and chief executive officer Tom Meeker said he was "encouraged."
Friday at Churchill Downs
The California Horse Racing Board finally has its quorum, and its newest member should be well prepared for the work ahead. On Thursday, Gov. Gray Davis named John C. Harris to the CHRB, which oversees the state's racing industry.
For the next two weekends, the Churchill Downs Simulcast Network will offer a pick-three wager linking turf races from Calder Race Course, Churchill Downs, and Hollywood Park. The wager carries a minimum bet of $1 and will link Calder's 11th race, Churchill's 10th race, and the fifth race from Hollywood Park.
The $150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIT), the final turf stakes of the year in New York for fillies and mares, drew an overflow field of 14 with two also eligibles entered for Saturday's Aqueduct feature.
Honest Lady, whose powerful stretch run in the Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) fell a half-length short of catching Kona Gold, has been retired to Juddmonte Farms, trainer Bobby Frankel said.
Brutally Frank returned from a three-month layoff and beat favored Lumberman by three-quarters of a length Thursday in the $61,000 Royal Haven Handicap at Aqueduct.
Despite the recent announcement that 22 racetracks intended to defect from the organization at the end of this year, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association said Thursday it maintains a solid core and will proceed with programs it considers key to the future success of the industry.
The injury reports from the Breeders' Cup continued to come in following the announcement of Riboletta's retirement due to a strained suspensory suffered in the Distaff.
Breeders' Cup lost ground in the battle to improve television ratings this year, and for the fifth consecutive year set a record low.
Aaron and Marie Jones' millionaire Riboletta, who would have figured strongly in the battle for Horse of the Year honors if she had won the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), has been retired from racing because of a suspensory injury suffered during the race.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced that California-based equine practitioner Dr. Jack K. Robbins and Thoroughbred owner/breeder Gary Biszantz have been named to the NTRA's Racing Integrity and Drug Testing Task Force.
The Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation announced Thursday that $1-million in research funds were raised by the auction of seasons at the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale.
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