Handicapping

Tips and picks for how to bet on Thorougbred horse racing

Breeders' Cup workers out in force at Santa Anita

With apologies to Grantland Rice, under blue-gray October skies, Breeders' Cup candidates were out en force at Santa Anita Saturday morning, going through final stages of their major drills for the World Championships event at "The Great Race Place" on November 2 and 3.

Pierrot Lunaire lights up Grand National

Mary Ann Houghland's Pierrot Lunaire charged through the stretch and overtook pacesetter Divine Fortune to win the Grade 1, $250,000 Grand National by three-quarters of a length at the 92nd Far Hills Races on Saturday. Royal Bonsai, a newcomer to American racing, finished third in the year's richest steeplechase race.

Frankel the absolute Champion

Unbeaten phenom Frankel crowned his glorious career with a victory over Cirrus des Aigles in Saturday's Group 1 Champion Stakes at Ascot, but only after his fans endured drama both before and during the highly-anticipated contest.

Wise Dan 'perfect' in final major move at Keeneland before Mile

Multiple Grade 1 hero Wise Dan, one of the top contenders for the $2 million Breeders' Cup Mile on November 3 at Santa Anita, completed his major work for his California test by working five furlongs on Keeneland's Polytrack in a bullet, best of 18, 1:00 2/5 on a cool, clear Saturday morning.

Madame Cactus captures My Trusty Cat

Mr. and Mrs. Marc C. Ferrell's two-year-old filly Madame Cactus rallied strongly in the homestretch to score a two-length victory in Friday night's $150,000 My Trusty Cat Stakes at Delta Downs. The race was part of an opening night program for the track's 2012-2013 meeting.

Excelebration faces rematch with Cityscape, Elusive Kate on Champions Day

One race prior to Frankel's anticipated career finale in the Group 1 QIPCO Champion Stakes on Saturday at Ascot, a field of eight will take to the green in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes. The four-year-old Excelebration, trained by Aidan O'Brien, has been beaten five times by Frankel and finally has the chance to prove himself the top miler in Europe without having to take on his nemesis.

Pletcher on hand at Santa Anita to direct BC workers

Todd Pletcher, whose barn of bluebloods leads the nation in purse earnings this year with nearly $17 million, was at Santa Anita Friday morning to coordinate strategy first hand as his locally based contenders prepare for the Breeders' Cup on November 2 and 3.

Miz Ida captures fourth stakes in Valley View division

Miz Ida made a successful rally from more than seven lengths down to deny 25-1 longshot English Class the upset in Friday's second division of the Grade 3, $125,000 Valley View for three-year-old fillies at Keeneland. A homebred racing for Richard, Bert and Elaine Klein, Miz Ida paid $11.40, $6.40 and $4 as the 9-2 second choice.

27-1 shot Angel Terrace outduels Cato in first Valley View division

Augustin Stable's homebred Angel Terrace outperformed her 27-1 odds when fending off the 4-1 Miss Cato by a nose in Friday's first division of the Grade 3, $125,000 Valley View Stakes at Keeneland. A fast-finishing fourth in the July 29 Nani Rose Stakes at Saratoga last out, the Jonathan Sheppard pupil rallied from last under an enterprising ride by James Graham and sparked mutuels of $57.60, $20.60 and $15.80.

Slip Away returns to action in Grand National

Slip Away, the champion steeplechaser of 2010, makes his return from a layoff of more than 14 months in Saturday's Grade 1, $250,000 Grand National. Contested over 2 5/8 miles at Far Hills, New Jersey, the Grand National is the richest event of the American jump season and last year yielded the season's eventual Eclipse Award champion, Black Jack Blues.

Jockey Club releases Report of Mares Bred

The Jockey Club on Friday released Report of Mares Bred (RMB) statistics for the 2012 breeding season. Based on RMBs received through October 14, 2012, The Jockey Club reports that 1,861 stallions covered 35,391 mares in North America during 2012.

Cecil thankful for Frankel

When Sir Henry Cecil saddles Frankel at Ascot ahead of the Group 1 QIPCO Champion Stakes on Saturday, the poignancy of the moment will be far from lost on him.

Kindergarden Kid schools Sycamore rivals

A perfectly timed ride by Julien Leparoux saw Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Kindergarden Kid slip between pacesetter Ioya Bigtime and Miami Deco to take Thursday's Grade 3, $100,000 Sycamore at Keeneland by a neck over the former rival. The Dynaformer gelding was sent off the 3-1 third pick in the seven-horse field and completed 1 1/2 miles on the firm turf in 2:31 4/5 to add a first graded win to his resume.

Luckity.com debuts

Churchill Downs Inc. has launched Luckity.com, a new and exciting gaming site with hundreds of chances to win cash prizes daily. It features number games, draw games, jackpots, quick picks, casino-style games and more, with the action revolving around live horse races around the world.

Pulpit broodmare tops OBS session at $50,000

DECISIVE (Pulpit), a four-year-old filly carrying her first foal, by Kitten's Joy, on a March 4 cover, was the $50,000 top price at the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's Fall Mixed Sale Open Session on Wednesday. Consigned by Ramsey Farm, agent, Hip No. 373 was gaveled down to Jose Uzcategui.

Gypsy Robin looking for Keeneland hat trick in Raven Run

Gypsy Robin, front-running winner of this spring's Grade 2 Beaumont at Keeneland, returns to the site of that three-length victory to headline a full field of 14 sophomore fillies in Saturday's 14th running of the Grade 2, $250,000 Raven Run going seven furlongs on the main Polytrack.

Registration now open for the Breeders' Cup $500K Pay Day

The Breeders' Cup announced Wednesday the launch of its $500K Pay Day promotion that will be conducted in partnership with 20 simulcast outlets, up from 17 in 2011, across the country. This is the second year in a row that the Breeders' Cup is offering this co-promotion with its simulcast partners.

Study shows importance of New York equine industry

A thriving equine industry is vital to the health of the New York State economy, according to the results of a study released Tuesday. The New York State Equine Industry Economic Impact Study determined that the equine industry has a $4.2 billion effect on the state's economy and generates 33,000 full-time jobs. Equine commerce also results in $187 million in state and local taxes for New York. The thousands of horse farms, training centers and riding stables doing business across the state preserve 1.3 million acres of open space. There are 157,500 horses in New York.

Breeders' Cup app now available

The Breeders' Cup announced Tuesday that it has launched the Official 2012 Breeders' Cup iPhone and iPad App in advance of the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park on November 2-3. The Official 2012 Breeders' Cup app will allow iPhone and iPad users to watch all 15 Breeders' Cup World Championship races live and for free, as the world's top Thoroughbreds compete for more than $25 million in purses.

Sam Houston creates $400,000 stakes for fillies and mares

Sam Houston Race Park has announced a revamped stakes schedule in 2013 which will include the richest Thoroughbred race in Texas and in track history. The $400,000 Houston Ladies' Classic is set for January 26 as part of a special stakes-filled card including the Grade 3, $200,000 John B. Connally Turf Cup. In total, the meet will feature 23 stakes races including four new stakes for Texas-breds paying more than $1.7 million in purses.

Seven confirmed to face Frankel in Champion

Frankel, in what is expected to be the final start of his remarkable unbeaten career, Cirrus des Aigles and Nathaniel are all set to contest Europe's richest 10-furlong race, the Group 1, £1.3 million Champion Stakes at Ascot, which could make it one of the highest-rated races this century.

Creative Cause retired to stud at Airdrie

Grade 1-winning millionaire Creative Cause, last seen finishing third in the May 19 Preakness Stakes, has been retired and will begin his new career as a stallion at Airdrie Stud, it was announced Monday.

Preakness 138 tickets now available

The Maryland Jockey Club has announced that tickets for 2013 Preakness Day went on-sale as of 10 a.m. (EDT) Monday morning. The 138th running of the Preakness place May 18, 2013 at famed Pimlico Race Course.

Siyouma stars in E.P. Taylor

Robert Jeffcock's Siyouma, who brought top-class European form to Sunday's Grade 1, $1,026,822 E.P. Taylor Stakes at Woodbine, reigned supreme in the prestigious turf test for distaffers. Sent off as the 5-2 favorite with Gerald Mosse, the French shipper kicked clear in the stretch to record her second straight top-level victory, following the Group 1 Sun Chariot at Newmarket September 29.

On the Breeders' Cup worktab

Leading Breeders' Cup Turf contender Point of Entry (Dynaformer) -- hero of the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational, Sword Dancer Invitational and Man o' War, all Grade 1s, in his past three -- logged five-eighths in 1:04 on Belmont's good inner turf Sunday.

Delegation wires Durham Cup

Gary Barber's Delegation went wire-to-wire at Woodbine in the $153,411 Durham Cup. The 6-5 favorite paid $4.50, $2.80 and $2.10 to his backers on Sunday and has now hit the board in all six of his lifetime starts.

Joshua Tree regains Canadian International crown

Under a crafty Frankie Dettori ride, the globetrotting Joshua Tree wired Sunday's Grade 1, $1,531,868 Canadian International, regaining the title he first won at Woodbine in 2010. The Marco Botti charge was a troubled runner-up behind the filly Sarah Lynx last year, but didn't have a straw in his path this time. Joshua Tree joins George Royal (1965-66) and Majesty's Prince (1982, 1984) as the only two-time Canadian International winners since the race was switched to turf in 1958.

Next Question upsets Nearctic in stakes debut

Three Diamonds Farm's Next Question was overlooked at 16-1 when making his stakes debut in Sunday's Grade 1, $511,576 Nearctic Stakes at Woodbine, but the Michael Trombetta charge proved more than up to the task, and thereby earned an automatic berth in the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint. After forcing the pace beneath Ramon Dominguez, the New York-bred edged clear down the lane and repelled English invader Night Carnation by a half-length.

Gentildonna wins photo, claims Japan's Triple Crown for fillies

Gentildonna has become the first since Apapane in 2010 and fourth in history to sweep Japan's Triple Crown for fillies. Under jockey Yasunari Iwata, the bay filly nosed out her archrival Verxina in a breathtaking photo-finish to claim the final leg, Sunday's Grade 1 Shuka Sho at Kyoto. Both fillies are by Deep Impact, hero of the 2005 Japanese Triple Crown.

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