The weanling market exhibited strength throughout the Keeneland and Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November breeding stock sales, and that strength was not just concentrated at the top. As has been the trend the last few years, there was a premium attached to all levels of the younger sires, and that seemed to be more pronounced this season. That was good news for sellers loaded with weanlings from first-year sires.
Ten horses will vie in the elite race of Churchill Downs' fall schedule, the $500,000 Clark Handicap (gr. II) Friday in Louisville. The Brazilian-bred Lundy's Liability will carry high weight of 120 pounds over the nine furlongs.
Kiaran McLaughlin trains two of the top three choices in Friday's $150,000 Delta Airlines/Top Flight Handicap (gr. II) at Aqueduct in Roar Emotion and Bending Strings.
Keeneland has begun work on the expansion and renovation of its sale pavilion. The work, to be done in three phases around the sale calendar, is expected to be completed by next August.
Coolmore stallion Monashee Mountain, one of the leading freshman sires, got off to quick start in Australia when his first Australian starter scored in Queensland yesterday.
- By Tom LaMarra
The former national manager of the Jockeys' Guild, ousted in 2001 in what he said was akin to a "terrorist attack," believes disabled riders are the real victims in the ongoing conflict over finances and the impending discontinuance of the Disabled Jockeys' Fund. He called on jockeys to take control of the situation.
The appeal of the Fall Highweight Handicap (gr. III) is that is harkens back to a time when good horses carried a lot of weight, and therefore, separated themselves from the ordinary. That is why the grade III, six-furlong sprint has lasted for so long.
Azeri, who figured to be the brightest star to shine over the holiday weekend at Churchill Downs in Thursday's Falls City Handicap (gr. II), has not been entered by trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Lukas, along with owner Michael Paulson, wasn't overly concerned with the 126-pound assessment, it was the spread in the weights that will keep her on the sidelines.
Doug Peterson, best known for training 1977 Triple Crown hero Seattle Slew to an Eclipse Award as the country's top older horse in 1978, was found dead of an apparent accidental drug overdose in a hotel room the evening of Nov. 21. He was 53.
Anasheed, a 4-year-old graded stakes-placed son of A.P. Indy, will enter stud at Charlotte Weber's Live Oak Stud near Ocala, Fla.
Dr. Tom Simon, who is in the process of curtailing his Vinery Australia operation, is going full steam with his newly formed Florida venture. Simon is building a stallion station, two 40-stall barns, and two training tracks on 220 acres of land near Ocala.
The management company that represents jockey Jerry Bailey sent a cease and desist letter to Jockeys' Guild president Dr. Wayne Gertmenian and Guild vice president Albert Fiss Nov. 19. The letter requested they stop accusing Bailey of having played a role in canceling insurance policies that benefited jockeys.
- By Tom LaMarra
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association Jockeys' Medical Insurance Panel has identified several consensus points and hopes to have recommendations in place by Dec. 31, officials said after the panel's first meeting Nov. 22 at Turfway Park in Kentucky.
- By Tom LaMarra
The Kentucky Equine Drug Research Council, which hasn't met since the fall of 2003, has been officially reconstituted. The council serves in an advisory capacity to the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority.
The 59-day Thoroughbred meet at Hoosier Park that included a one-day jockey protest ended Sunday with declines in wagering and increases in on-track attendance and purses.
Horsemen at Calder will find a little something extra on their plates Thanksgiving Day. The track announced a purse increase of $1,000 per overnight race, which will take effect with the Nov. 25 race card.
Fair Grounds Racecourse in New Orleans kicks off its 133rd season of live racing and first under the ownership of Churchill Downs Inc. Thursday with the traditional opening-day feature, the Thanksgiving Handicap.
More people connected with racehorses in Great Britain will be banned from betting them to lose effective Dec. 1, the British Jockey Club has ruled.
- By Tom Keyser
The family of Baltimore Orioles majority owner Peter Angelos signed an agreement Nov. 20 to buy Rosecroft Raceway, a struggling harness track in southern Maryland just outside of Washington, D.C. The deal, if approved by the Maryland Racing Commission, would likely enhance the chances of slot machines being authorized in the state.
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick -- The Kentucky Equine Education Project is critical to the future of all horse breeds in Kentucky.
By Dan Arrigo -- When I became involved in Thoroughbred racing in the 1950s, it was a sport of numbers. Now, it seems to be more of a business of numbers than a sport, but most racing fans still spend more time looking at the figures on a tote board--or on TVG--than they do admiring colorful silks or counting horse's legs in the post parade.
The American Association of Equine Practitioners is celebrating its golden anniversary in 2004, and will hold its 50th annual convention in Denver, Colo., Dec. 4-8. The AAEP was founded in December 1954, in Louisville, Ky., by 11 charter members and now boasts approximately 8,000 members in 57 countries. Based on past conference attendance averages, some 2,700 veterinarians, veterinary students, and technicians will be there, while guests and exhibitors in the trade show that accompanies the conference will bring the grand total to about 5,500.
- By Mike Kane
Newly hired New York Racing Association president and chief executive officer Charles Hayward said Nov. 22 the racing organization is close to operating in the black again.
Bienamado, a three-time California grade I turf winner, has been acquired by Eoin Banville for stallion duty at Arctic Tack Stud in County Wexford in Ireland.
Mazel Trick, one of the leading freshman sires in 2003 and currently ranked fourth on the second-crop list, will relocate to Thomas Reigle's Reigle Heir Farms near Grantville, Pa.
Dixieland Heat, sire of champion Xtra Heat, has been relocated to Michele Rodriguez and Lee Daniel Thomas' Elite Thoroughbreds near Folsom, La.
- By Tom Keyser
The family of Baltimore Orioles' majority owner Peter Angelos signed an agreement Nov. 20 to buy Rosecroft Raceway, a struggling harness track in Maryland just outside Washington, D.C.
Dr. T. Douglas Byars, a senior medicine clinician, has announced he will end his 22-year tenure with Hagyard-Davidson-McGee Associates in January 2005.
The Kentucky Racing Authority formed a committee at its Nov. 22 meeting to study jockey insurance and to provide recommendations to Gov. Ernie Fletcher on whether or not some form of worker's compensation insurance for jockeys is needed.
A Galileo half-brother to group I Grand Criterium winner Second Empire comfortably topped Monday's Tattersalls December Yearling Sale in Newmarket, England, when bought by Demi O'Byrne for 255,000 guineas.
Will "Rocky" score another knockout? Will The Grocer breeze through the express lane again? Those questions should be answered in the Nov. 27 Remsen Stakes (gr. II) at Aqueduct. The same day, at Churchill Downs, Iroquois (gr. III) winner Straight Line again will try to take the shortest way home in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II).
Millionaire Bowman's Band, who ended his career with a runner-up effort in the Nov. 20 Charles H. Hadry Stakes at Pimlico, has been retired from racing and will enter stud at Maryland Stallion Station near Butler, Md.
No Bull Baby overcame traffic problems to rally in the stretch under the guidance of Tyler Baze to win the $100,000 Moccasin Stakes for 2-year-old fillies by one-half length over Short Route Sunday at Hollywood Park.
Minnesota-bred Wally's Choice found his best stride in the stretch and drove past the leaders in the final sixteenth of a mile to win the $167,250 Oklahoma Derby (gr. III) at muddy Remington Park Sunday.
Outsider G P Fleet squeezed between horses in the stretch and successfully dueled with Cloudy's Knight to win the $174,300 River City Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the Churchill Downs turf Sunday.
Jockeys John Velazquez, Edgar Prado and Jerry Bailey, the nation's three leaders in purse earnings this year, will leave their New York base to ride in the Turf Festival at Hollywood Park next weekend.
Sent off at odds of 19-1, the California-bred filly Shout to the North rallied for a superb score in the $136,875 Glorious Song Stakes for 2-year-old fillies Sunday at Woodbine.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas says he's undecided about whether to run Azeri in the $300,000-added Falls City Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Thanksgiving Day due to concern over weight assignments.
Matt McCarron rallied Eldon Farm Racing Stable's steeplechase star Hirapour through the stretch to win the $100,000 Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup (NSA-I) at Springdale Race Course in course record time Sunday.
The Steve Asmussen-trained Megascape, shouldering top weight of 122 pounds, went gate to wire to easily upset odds-on favorite Alfonsina in the $106,500 Valley Stream (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies Sunday at Aqueduct.
Favored Durandal made it back-to-back victories in the Japan Mile Championship (Jpn-I), defeating the filly Dance in the Mood by two lengths in the $1.77 million event at Kyoto Racecourse Sunday.
In spite of contesting just off a fast pace, New Farm's homebred Wildcat Heir had enough in the tank to hold off favored Midas Eyes by a neck in the $300,000 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash (gr. I) at Pimlico Saturday.
Former hurdler Dreadnaught won an all-out stretch duel with Certifiably Crazy for his first graded stakes victory in the $150,000 Red Smith Handicap (gr. IIT) at 1 3/8 miles on the Aqueduct turf Saturday.
Trainer Steve Asmussen broke Jack Van Berg's 28-year-old record for wins in a single season when he collected his 497th victory of 2004 on Saturday night at Delta Downs.
Three-time champion Azeri was assigned high weight 126 pounds for the $300,000-added Falls City Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares at Churchill Downs on Thanksgiving Day. In the $500,000 Clark Handicap (gr. II) on Nov. 27, South African import Lundy's Liablility was assigned top impost of 120 pounds.
A chain-reaction spill involving four horses that started when 2-year-old Irish Tizzy broke down in the far turn of the second race at Golden Gate Fields sent three riders to a local hospital for treatment.
Unbeaten Declan's Moon was much the best in winning Saturday's $100,000 Hollywood Prevue (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at Hollywood Park.
Last after the first half-mile, jockey Brice Blanc guided Aud through traffic to register a neck victory over 51-1 May Gator in the $173,550 Cardinal Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares on the Churchill Downs turf Saturday.
Mark One, with Robert Landry in the irons, rallied from off the pace to gun down Prince of Wales and Breeders' Stakes champion A Bit O'Gold in the final jumps to win Saturday's $157,950 Woodbine Slots Cup (Can-III).
Ireland's champion jockey Jamie Spencer was taken to a Long Island hospital on Saturday after being injured in the paddock at Aqueduct.
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