Spring Star, a lightly-raced 5-year-old mare, won her 2004 debut over a field that included seven other graded stakes winners, turning in a sharp performance in the $110,900 Wilshire Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the Hollywood Park turf Sunday.
This year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) can be broken up into three categories -– Favorites, live longshots, and potential overlays. The favorites are obvious and the longshots will be dealt with at a later date. But if there is one horse who can have bettors pulling their hair out for not having him, it's Wimbledon.
Move To Strike charged to the lead and kept his opponents at bay to win Sunday's $75,000 Star De Naskra Stakes for 3-year-old Maryland breds at Pimlico.
Retired trainer Wally Dunn, who sent out Colorado King to three major stakes victories at Hollywood Park in 1964, died earlier this week in his Arcadia apartment. He was 93.
Daily notes compiled by the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) notes team tracking the contenders for the classic at Churchill Downs on May 1.
Tiring West Virginia, passed in the stretch by Pay Attention, responded to urging from jockey John Velazquez to rally for a nose victory in the one-mile New York Stallion Stakes Times Square Division at Aqueduct on Sunday.
Buckram Oak Farm's Last Song was an early bird who got a good track to work over at Churchill Downs Sunday morning, breezing five furlongs in 1:00 1/5 for trainer Carl Nafzger in preparation for Friday's Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
River Dancer, a 58-1 shot from Hong Kong, won the $1.79 million Queen Elizabeth II Cup (HK-I) on Sunday by three-quarters of a length in front of 40,000 stunned spectators at Sha Tin Racecourse.
Eddington, who remains under consideration for Saturday's 130th Kentucky Derby (gr. I) but would need at least two horses to defect by the time entries are drawn on Wednesday, worked five furlongs over Belmont Park's main track Sunday morning in 1:00.
Trainer Grover "Bud" Delp and jockey Ron Franklin looked back on the silver anniversary of Spectacular Bid's victory in the 1979 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) at Churchill Downs Sunday afternoon.
Sunday morning's heavy downpour subsided just in time for James McIngvale's Wimbledon to work shortly after the renovation break with regular exercise rider Dana Barnes aboard. The big gray son of Wild Rush posted a bullet five furlongs in :59 2/5 over a sloppy main track at Churchill Downs.
Friends Lake, who has not started since winning the Florida Derby (gr. I) on March 13, worked five furlongs in 1:03 during heavy rain at Churchill Downs Sunday morning. Light rain started falling around 5:30 a.m., and the heavens opened up just after 6, rendering the track surface, already heavy with water from rains earlier in the week, to slop.
Trainer Todd Pletcher worked his pair of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) hopefuls on Sunday morning before an early morning deluge at Churchill Downs. Dogwood Stable's Limehouse was officially clocked in 1:01 for five furlongs, while David Moore's Edgewood Farm's Pollard's Vision was timed going the same distance in 1:00 4/5. Also on the track early was Read the Footnotes.
Although the blistering five-furlong works by Smarty Jones and Birdstone dominated the morning activities Saturday, it was the well-conceived plan by Song of the Sword's owner Ernie Paragallo that set several major events in motion.
A daily report from the Kentucky Derby Notes Team tracking the progress of contenders for this year's classic on May 1 at Churchill Downs.
April 25, 1914
The commissioners of the California Horse Racing Board have scheduled a May 18 hearing to consider the appeal of jockey Patrick Valenzuela.
Southern California invader Kela was given a smooth ride by jockey David Nuesch and the 6-year-old responded with a convincing 5 ¼-length victory over late running Supah Blitz in Saturday's $300,000 Texas Mile (gr. III) at Lone Star Park.
Alex Solis guided favored Cheiron through a slight opening between horses in mid-stretch to win the $250,000 Snow Chief for 3-year-old California breds, the featured event in Saturday's 10-race, $1.3 million California Gold Rush at Hollywood Park.
The Allen Paulson Living Trust's Azeri, the 2002 "Horse of the Year" and champion older filly or mare in 2003, has been assigned high weight of 125 pounds for an expected start in Saturday's $250,000-added Humana Distaff (gr. I) at Churchill Downs.
Favored Singletary, urged on by jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. after taking command at the eighth pole, held off Captain Squire to win the $148,750 San Francisco Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IIT) by three-quarters of a length at Bay Meadows Saturday.
Jockey Rene Douglas thought he had Saturday's $250,000 Sixty Sails Handicap (gr. III) at Hawthorne measured with Bare Necessities poised for a late-running victory. But he didn't account for the tenacity of Allspice.
He Loves Me tracked undefeated Plata to the top of the lane before muscling her way to the lead and going on to victory in the $75,000 Caesar's Wish Stakes for 3-year-old Maryland-bred fillies at Pimlico Saturday.
Jockey Ken Shino reached the 2,000-victory milestone Friday at Prairie Meadows while recording a riding triple.
Off the board in three career turf starts for Hall of Fame trainer H. Allen Jerkens, Houbeau Farm's 32-1 Chilly Rooster defeated 50-1 Union Place by a half-length in Saturday's $111,400 Fort Marcy Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct.
Favored Sir Shackleton, making his stakes debut, repelled the challenge of Courageous Act in the stretch and went on to post a convincing victory in Saturday's $110,800 Derby Trial (gr. III) on opening day at Churchill Downs.
Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) winner Castledale worked six furlongs in 1:12 Saturday morning at Santa Anita, trainer Jeff Mullins sounding as though he was leaning toward a run in the Kentucky Derby.
On-track wagering totaled an all-time record $28,010,988 during Keeneland's 15-day spring meeting, which ended Friday. An all-time record 232,826 people attended Keeneland's meeting.
Long-distance specialist Epicentre emerged from the pack to take the lead in midstretch en route to a decisive victory in the $150,000 Elkhorn Stakes (gr. IIIT) as Keeneland closed its record-breaking 15-day spring meeting Friday.
Smarty Jones and Birdstone, among the 3-year-olds vying for favoritism in the May 1 Kentucky Derby (gr. I), sizzled in Saturday morning workouts at Churchill Downs.
Trainer Jason Orman scratched Rock Hard Ten out of the Derby Trial Stakes (gr. III) in favor of taking a chance on the Kris S. colt drawing in to the May 1 Kentucky Derby.
April 24, 1965
The moment of truth is at hand, as several Kentucky Derby (gr. I) scenarios are played out over the next couple of days. At Churchill Downs, the biggest activity Friday morning was trying to dodge the rain. But the miserable weather was brightened momentarily by the presence of the unbeaten Smarty Jones.
Isidore Sobkowski, previously chief technology officer at Self Service Technologies in Stamford, Conn., has been special consultant on technology and interim director of the National Office of Wagering Security.
Daily report on leading contenders for the 130th Kentucky Derby (gr. I) at Churchill Downs on May 1.
Grade I winner and millionaire More Than Ready was represented by his first winner when his initial starter, the filly Ready to Live, won a maiden special race April 21 at Lone Star Park.
Fusaichi Pegasus, the 2000 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner, reached sire status when his son In Excelsis won a maiden race April 22 in heavy going at Tipperary in Ireland.
Jockey Diane Nelson, who began riding in New York in the 1980s, is back in action after an injury last fall at Belmont Park left her on the shelf for the winter.
Legislation that would authorize a pari-mutuel takeout hike to defray workers' compensation costs passed the California Senate by a 31-6 vote April 22 and is headed to the state Assembly, where it is expected to be addressed the week of April 26.
Bruce Lunsford's undefeated Madcap Escapade zipped five furlongs in :58 1/5 over a sloppy track at Churchill Downs Friday morning in preparation for the April 30 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
Churchill Downs opens its 53-day spring meet Saturday with a 10-race program that features the 80th running of the $100,000 Derby Trial Stakes (gr. III).
After Arkansas Derby (gr. I) winner Smarty Jones returned from a gallop over the sloppy Churchill Downs track Friday morning, trainer John Servis said "he is doing fantastic. I wish the race were tomorrow."
Little Treasure, a graded stakes-winning 5-year-old mare, has been retired from racing with six wins from 16 starts and earnings of $305,262.
Almutawakel, winner of the 1999 Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) and a French group I winner, was represented by his first winner when his Irish-bred daughter Society Music won April 19.
U.S. District Court Judge Ralph Erickson says he will stick to an Aug. 23 trial date for Racing Services Inc., even though three of the four defendants don't have lawyers.
The Southern California jockey colony April 22 expressed its displeasure with the April 16 decision by California Horse Racing Board chairman John Harris to grant jockey Patrick Valenzuela a stay of his recent suspension that allows him to ride while he appeals the termination of his conditional license.
The Breeders' Cup and Thoroughbred Championship Tour are discussing a potential joint venture that would have to be in place within 45 days under an agreement reached April 22, a Breeders' Cup official said.
More than $1.3 million in purses are up for grabs Saturday and the best California-breds will duel it out over an entire day at Hollywood Park as part of the Citibank Gold Rush V program. A total of 100 horses were entered for the 10-race card, which is headlined by the $250,000 Citibank Snow Chief Stakes, a nine-furlong main track event for sophomores.
TV Games Network rolled out new graphics and features, which began appearing in conjunction with the opening of Hollywood Park's spring/summer season, at the April 22 California Horse Racing Board meeting. It also announced an increase in the number of viewers and a slight shift toward experienced racing fans.
April 23, 1987
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