Headlines and features from the Thoroughbred industry

Trainer Vance Hits Jackpot with 47-1 Caressing

Who would have thought a claiming trainer who has won more than a thousand races, and lost many more than that, would be a perfect one-for-one in the Breeders' Cup? But it happened Nov. 4, appropriately at his home base, when Caressing, at 47-1 the longest shot on the board, won the $1,025,920 Juvenile Fillies (gr. I).

Tiznow and Giant's Causeway Gave Us a Classic to Remember

Both horses had been here before. At first, it seemed like just another brawl, in another alley, in another town. Tiznow and Giant's Causeway thrived on bare-knuckle street fights, and because of this lust for battle, their reputations preceded them as they strutted into Louisville, Ky., for the 17th Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I). Sneak up from behind and hit them on the head if you have to, but do not under any circumstances look them in the eye. In this skirmish, however, things were different. When Tiznow and Giant's Causeway looked into each other's eyes, they saw something they'd never seen before: a fire that matched their own.

Cecilia Straub-Rubens, Owner of Tiznow, Dies

California breeder-owner Cecilia Straub-Rubens, whose colt Tiznow took a major step toward Horse of the Year honors with a victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), died the night of Nov. 7 at a Newport Beach hospital.

Cecilia Straub-Rubens, co-owner of Tiznow, Dies

Cecilia Straub-Rubens, who was at Churchill Downs for Saturday's victory by Tiznow in the Breeders' Cup Classic, died Tuesday night at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach, Calif. Straub-Rubens, who owned Tiznow with Michael Cooper, would have been 84 years old next month. According to the Los Angeles Times, she suffered from cancer

Stronach Envisions Magna 'Super Track' Circuit

Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach, in comments made to the Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Manager's Club Tuesday night in Lexington, indicated his intention to create a circuit of "super tracks," and called for more democracy within the Thoroughbred industry. Stronach, who on two occasions during his talk took calls on his cellular telephone to bid on horses at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale -- "It's only monies," he told his agent during one conversation -- spoke for more than an hour and fielded numerous questions from the audience. He was at the podium the longest of any speaker at the monthly club gatherings in recent memory.

Mixed Results For Racing, Gaming Initiatives

While the presidential race was too close to call, that was not the case with gaming-related referendums in three states. In Massachusetts, dog tracks apparently scored a victory as a referendum to ban greyhound racing was headed toward defeat. In other gambling issues, Arkansas voters rejected casino gambling and in Maine a proposal to permit video lottery terminals at tracks failed.

Seven Figure Purchases Continue at Keeneland

Topped by the $4.2 million bid from Shadwell Estate Company for Magical Allure, a grade I winning General Meeting mare in foal to Storm Cat, the number of horses selling for seven figures continued to rise during Tuesday's session of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale. With 11 horses selling for $1-million or more Tuesday, the seven figure transactions totaled 39 during the first two days of the sale. During the 1999 record- breaking sale, 29 horses brought final bids in excess of $1-million.

AAEP Preview

The results of a landmark, three-year study on radiographic changes in Thoroughbred yearlings will be presented during the American Association of Equine Practitioners annual convention.

Leap of Faith

By Robert Clay -- Recently, a few people in our industry decided to no longer participate in the NTRA process. The timing of their decision is an indication they are more interested in destroying the unity than growing the pie.

Tiz About Time

By Ray Paulick -- Tiznow may become the first California-bred Horse of the Year since Swaps in 1956.

Oak Tree Handle Up as Attendance Declines

The 32nd Oak Tree Racing Association meeting at Santa Anita ended Monday with an increase in total handle despite a decline in on-track attendance and handle from last season. The meeting's total combined average daily handle of $9,760,972 was up 2.7 percent over 1999 while on-track average daily attendance for the 27-day meeting was 11,170, a decline of 4.1 percent from last year. Average daily on-track handle also declined to $2,352,124 down 1.2 percent from last year.

Down the Aisle Retired to Dixiana Farm

Millionaire Down the Aisle has been retired and will enter stud for a fee of $5,000 at Bruce Kline and Mary Lou Wibel's Dixiana Farm near Lexington. He captured this year's United Nations Handicap (gr. IT) in course-record time, plus the Bougainvillea (gr. IIIT), and Kentucky Cup Turf Handicaps.

Running Stag Retired from Racing

Frequent flier Running Stag has been retired from racing due to a recurrence of a ligament injury, trainer Philip Mitchell told the Racing Post Monday. The 6-year old's career concludes with seven wins in 40 starts and career earnings of $1,663,227.

Most Adoption Programs Unite Under One Umbrella

Through a joint effort involving input from Thoroughbred adoption and retirement groups across the country, the Thoroughbred Adoption and Retirement Association has been established. TARA will be based in Lexington, Ky., with initial support provided by California Equine Retirement Foundation, Days End Farm Horse Rescue, and ReRun.

Keeneland Sets Record For Single Session Gross Receipts

Jewel Princess, a champion daughter of Key to the Mint, was purchased by Coolmore Stud's John Magnier for $4.9 million to top Monday's second session of Keeneland's November Breeding Stock Sale. Monday's gross receipts represented a record for any single session in Keeneland sale history as 24 horses brought final bids in excess of seven figures.

Breeders' Cup, TVG Worked Out Wagering Deal With Beulah Park

Breeders' Cup Ltd. and the TV Games Network allowed Beulah Park's interactive wagering subsidiary to accept bets on the Nov. 4 Breeders' Cup at Churchill Downs after the owner of the Ohio racetrack filed a lawsuit just days before the championship. Beulah Park general manager Mike Weiss said secured the rights to offer wagering through its automated account-wagering system, but the terms were not disclosed.

The Kid Returns Home

Jeanne G. Vance's Lemon Drop Kid, who concluded his career with a fifth-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Classic, arrived at William S. Farish's Lane's End Farm on Sunday. The colt, who was bred by Farish and W. S. Kilroy, was foaled at Lane's End near Versailles, Ky.

Broodmare Squeak Brings $3.7 Million at Keeneland

Agent John Ferguson, representing Sheikh Mohammed, went to $3.7 million to acquire the Selkirk mare Squeak to top the early portion of the first session of Keeneland's November Breeding Stock Sale. Consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency, the 6-year-old mare is in foal to leading sire Storm Cat.

Breeders' Cup Drama: Juvenile Trophy Presentation

Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach went two-for-three as a Thoroughbred owner in Saturday's Breeders' Cup at Churchill Downs with a couple of nail-biting finishes. But the real drama unfolded in the winner's circle after the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), when Stronach was presented a trophy by National Thoroughbred Racing Association commissioner Tim Smith.

More Than Ready, Golden Missile To Contest Cigar Mile

The connections of Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) fifth-place finisher More Than Ready and Golden Missile, who finished last in the Classic (gr. I), have indicated their horses will be pointed to the $350,000 Cigar Mile (gr. I) at Aqueduct later this month. Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) fourth-place finisher Affirmed Success, who won the 1999 Cigar Mile after having finished second in the 1998 renewal, will also contest the Nov. 25 race.

Internal Bleeding Claims Life of Spanish Fern

Juddmonte Farms' Spanish Fern died Saturday evening from internal bleeding that resulted from a fractured pelvis, suffered at the start of the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) at Churchill Downs. The 5-year-old daughter of El Gran Senor pulled herself up shortly after the break, noticeably favoring her left hind leg.

Spanish Fern Dies As Result of Internal Bleeding

Juddmonte Farms' Spanish Fern died Saturday evening from internal bleeding that resulted from a fractured pelvis, suffered at the start of the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) at Churchill Downs. The 5-year-old daughter of El Gran Senor pulled herself up shortly after the break, noticeably favoring her left hind leg.

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