Bruce Lunsord's undefeated Madcap Escapade was able to dictate the pace and hold off a determined Ashado in the stretch for her fourth straight victory in the $485,000 Ashland Stakes (gr. I) for 3-year-old fillies at Keeneland Saturday.
Juddmonte Farm's Diplomatic Bag, debuting in the United States for trainer Bobby Frankel, captured Saturday's $150,000 Arcadia Handicap (gr. IIT) by three-quarters of a length over Statement on the Santa Anita turf.
Sackatoga Stable's Funny Cide made his return to New York successful with a half-length win over Evening Attire in the $196,000 Excelsior Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct Saturday.
Darley lost one of its flagship Irish stallions Saturday with the death of In The Wings, winner of the 1990 Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) and a proven European classic sire.
- By Tom LaMarra
There's more than meets the eye as the pari-mutuel industry examines the relationship between handle and purses, and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association is working behind the scenes to investigate the legal ramifications.
Winchell Thoroughbreds' Tapit, who finished sixth in the Florida Derby (gr. I) in his 3-year-old debut, worked a mile in 1:47 2/5 at his home base of Tapeta Farm in North East, Md., in preparation for next Saturday's Wood Memorial (gr. I).
Undefeated Smarty Jones, the likely favorite for next Saturday's $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. II), worked five furlongs Saturday in a bullet :58 3/5, almost two seconds quicker than the second fastest time (1:00 2/5) at the distance.
April 3, 1965
As Eurosilver, another major contender for Kentucky Derby 130 fell out of the picture, fans returned to the mutuel field as a mild favorite at the midpoint of the third and final pool of Churchill Downs' 2004 Kentucky Derby Future Wager.
For the fifth consecutive year, Kids to the Cup will enjoy a visit to Santa Anita on Santa Anita Derby day.
Stormica, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly, seeks her third consecutive victory in the United States in the $100,000-added Las Cienegas Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the Santa Anita downhill turf course at about 6 1/2 furlongs.
Pesci, the speedy 4-year-old filly, and Joe Pesci, the Academy Award-nominated actor who owns a share of the horse, will be at Santa Anita Park Sunday for the $75,000 Santa Lucia Handicap for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles.
C K Woods Stable's homebred Timo rallied to catch longshot Mr. J. T. L. in the stretch and posted a three-quarter length triumph in the $113,400 Transylvania Stakes (gr. IIIT), the opening day feature at Keeneland Racecourse in Lexington, Ky.
- By Tom LaMarra
Government and corporate officials in Louisiana are on a mission to make horse racing a key component of the state's marketing and tourism efforts, and at least one racetrack official believes cooperation among industry players could make Louisiana the preeminent racing state in the country.
- By Tom LaMarra
New Jersey Racing Commission executive director Frank Zanzuccki, expected to officially take over as chairman of the Association of Racing Commissioners International during an April 3 board of directors meeting, said the unification of RCI and the North American Pari-Mutuel Regulators Association would be his top priority.
- By Tom LaMarra
National Thoroughbred Racing Association commissioner Tim Smith continues to bang the drum for industry cooperation and aggregation, and again issued a call for the pooling of rights for major events such as the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships and Visa Triple Crown.
Trainer Nick Zito announced Friday that Buckram Oak Farm's Eurosilver has been removed from consideration for this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) due to the lingering effects of a glandular infection.
Jockey Pat Valenzuela, who has had a history of drug related problems during his career, today had his current suspension extended through the remainder of 2004 by the Santa Anita stewards.
The Wood Memorial (gr. I) gained a probable starter when trainer Bob Baffert announced Friday it is likely that James McIngvale's Consecrate will ship east for next Saturday's $750,000 feature at a mile and an eighth.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association has hired Joe Clabes as director of industry relations and Jamie Eads as industry programs coordinator.
GSN, formerly known as the Game Show Network, has created the first reality series set in the world of Thoroughbred racing. Titled The American Dream Derby, the show will turn six fans into owners of claiming horses, who will compete in races throughout the year and then have their horses square off against each other in the American Dream Derby.
Sunday's Lafayette Stakes (gr. III) drew a well-matched field of seven 3-year-olds set to run seven furlongs.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas hasn't given up on his chances of making this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I), as he sends out Robert and Beverly Lewis' Hasslefree in next Saturday's $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. II). Lukas also plans on running the Lewises' Race for Glory in the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II).
Washington horseplayers will be able to bet by phone or over the Internet under a new law signed by Gov. Gary Locke on Thursday.
The Society of International Thoroughbred Auctioneers will discontinue the separation of Canadian earnings in sales' catalogs until The Jockey Club implements full Canadian conversions in 2005.
The stumbling blocks continued for 2-year-old filly champ Halfbridled Friday morning when she tied up (cramped up) after a routine gallop for Saturday's $500,000 Ashland Stakes (gr. I), in which she was to face Madcap Escapade and Ashado for leadership in the 3-year-old filly division.
Emory Hamilton's Tara Roma, a grade II winner and grade I stakes producer, died March 31 from complications while delivering an A.P. Indy colt.
Come My Prince, whose grade I-winning son, Palace Music, sired the great Cigar, was euthanized March 7 at age 32 at Nancy Storer's Warfield Stud near Butler, Mo.
The question in the 67th Santa Anita Derby, with Lion Heart going to Lexington to run in the Grade I Toyota Blue Grass Stakes instead of here, is who will go to the lead.
Endeavouring, a 4-year-old half-brother to grade I winner Came Home, will enter stud for $500 live foal at Cyndy O'Bannon's Beau Ridge Farm near Bunker Hill, W.Va.
Australia's best racehorse, Lonhro (Octagonal--Shadea), will retire to stud in about three weeks.
April 2, 1978
A small but select field of 3-year-old fillies, including champion Halfbridled, undefeated Madcap Escapade, Eclipse Award finalist Ashado, and grade III winner La Reina, has been entered for Saturday's $500,000 Ashland Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland.
Undefeated Smarty Jones, the likely favorite in next weekend's Arkansas Derby (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park, was the surprise leader following the first day of wagering in Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Thursday.
Star Cross can atone for a dismal effort in the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) last month, heading a field of seven in the $100,000 San Bernardino Handicap (gr. III) at Santa Anita Saturday.
Saturday's $150,000 Arcadia Handicap (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita has all of the earmarks of a springboard race for grass stakes later in the year at longer distances. Several of the eight entrants are better traveling farther than the Arcadia's 1 1/8-mile route. And none of the starters are coming off of a win.
The Grade II Illinois Derby looks like an orchestra with no conductor, as the morning line odds indicate.
Jockey Patrick Valenzuela, his future as a rider in the balance Thursday, had failed to contact Santa Anita Park stewards as of 12:30 p.m. to learn of his fate.
With the Pool 3 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) Future Wager bets locked in before the big April 10 preps, this is when you can actually get good value for your money. Just find a Funny Cide-type of horse and get past one more hurdle next weekend..
The $250,000 Aventura Stakes for 3-year-olds is chock full of Florida-based and Florida-bred horses. All eight entrants made their last start in the Sunshine State, and six of the eight were bred within the state's boundaries.
- By Tom LaMarra
Officials gathered in New Orleans for the first Joint Conference of Racing Regulators will consider a proposed national medication policy that calls for voluntary use of Salix on race days and use of one of three non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs no later than 24 hours before a race.
The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association remains committed to implementing a drug-testing program tied to the American Graded Stakes Committee by July 1, an official said April 1 during the Joint Conference of Racing Regulators in New Orleans.
Seven horses will line up Saturday for the 1 1/4-mile Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. II), and none of them has ever won at that distance.
Dahlia's Dreamer, one of four grade I winners from the great racemare and producer Dahlia (by Vaguely Noble), was euthanized Feb. 17 because of lymphangitis.
Last year trainer Bobby Frankel saddled Medaglia d' Oro to win the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II). This year Frankel hopes Peace Rules, who is listed as even money on the morning-line, can emulate his stablemate's success in Saturday's $500,000 race going 1 1/8-miles.
The Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) at Oaklawn Park Saturday promises to be one of the more intriguing matchups of the year as six older fillies and mares have been entered, including grade I winners Azeri, Wild Spirit, Island Fashion, and Star Parade.
Funny Cide, the New York-bred winner of last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness (gr. I), returns to his native state Saturday for a start in the Excelsior Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct.
Unlike the hundreds of Thoroughbreds nominated to the Visa Triple Crown Challenge, chances for a steeplechase Triple Crown winner are much better, with only 11 horses nominated to the first leg, the two-mile Georgia Cup (NSA-I).
In what has to be the most wide-open race of the 3-year-old season, 11 horses from all across the country converge on Hawthorne Race Course for Saturday's $500,000 Illinois Derby (gr. II).
The Illinois Derby (gr. II) at Hawthorne Race Course and a special about the state of racing industry in Illinois will highlight the April 3 programming schedule of Horsin' Around TV. Dave Gutfreund, the show's regular Thoroughbred analyst, and the Daily Racing Form's Marcus Hersh will join producer and host Joe Kristufek to break down Hawthorne's key Triple Crown prep.
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