Handicapping

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Speightstown colt brings $440,000 at Fasig-Tipton

A gray son of Speightstown provided some late fireworks near the conclusion of Tuesday's second session of Fasig-Tipton's October Yearling Sale at Newtown Paddocks near Lexington, Kentucky. Whipser Hill Farm was the winning bidder at $440,000 for the February 2 Kentucky-bred, who was offered as Hip No. 820 from the consignment of Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent.

Hovdey and Tower added to Joe Hirsch Media Roll of Honor

Esteemed turf writers Jay Hovdey and the late Whitney Tower have been chosen as the National Museum of Racing's Joe Hirsch Media Roll of Honor recipients for 2012. The Roll of Honor was initiated by the Museum in 2010 in memory of Hirsch, a distinguished turf writer who died the previous year.

Breeders' Cup creates 'Text to Donate' for retired horses

In its continuing support of a national program for  retired racehorses, the Breeders' Cup announced Tuesday that it has created a "Text  to Donate" campaign, through Give by Cell, to allow fans to contribute to the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA).

Stronach, BCCA to be honored for charity work

Thoroughbred Charities of America (TCA) will honor Frank Stronach with the TCA Leadership Award and Belmont Child Care Association with the TCA Industry Service Award at the 23rd Annual Select Stallion Season Auction to be held January 5, 2013 at the Keeneland Entertainment Center in Lexington, Kentucky.

Dettori turns freelance after amicable split with Godolphin

In a move that did not come unexpectedly, Godolphin announced Sunday that Frankie Dettori will no longer serve as a retained rider for the stable. The popular Italian, who had been Godolphin's premier rider for 18 years, will now become a highly sought-after freelancer. On that basis, Dettori will continue to accept mounts for Sheikh Mohammed's flagship operation.

Upperline makes history in Dowager

The veteran five-year-old mare Upperline made her finale for the Mike Stidham barn in Sunday's $125,000 Dowager Stakes, and seized the moment to make Keeneland history as well. The winner of the Grade 3 Bewitch here in April, Upperline became the first to sweep both of the track's 1 1/2-mile turf stakes for distaffers in the same season.

Awesome Feather, The Lumber Guy tune up at Belmont

Trainer Chad Brown sent out undefeated Awesome Feather on Sunday morning for her penultimate work prior to an expected start in the 1 1/8-mile Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic. The four-year-old Awesome of Course filly was caught by NYRA clockers in 1:12 1/5 for six furlongs over Belmont Park's fast main track, the only work at the distance.

Saratoga Snacks whets appetite for the future

Trainer Gary Sciacca expressed excitement Sunday morning about what the future might have in store for Saratoga Snacks, a three-year-old who on Saturday finished second, beaten 1 1/4 lengths by five-year-old Lunar Victory, in the Empire Classic.

Gold Ship flirts with stakes record in Kikuka Sho

Gold Ship, sent off heavy favorite with the absence of archrival Deep Brillante, lived up to expectations with his second classic victory in Sunday's Grade 1 Kikuka Sho (Japanese St Leger) at Kyoto. Trained by Naosuke Sugai and ridden by Hiroyuki Uchida, the gray son of Stay Gold covered about 1 7/8 miles on firm turf in 3:02.9, just missing the stakes record of 3:02.7 established by Song of Wind in 2006.

Bern Identity cruises in Jean Lafitte

Under jockey Paco Lopez, Bern Identity sat behind the early leaders before moving up four wide around the second turn. When Lopez gave him his cue he responded well by opening up a clear lead in the stretch and cruising home in front by three lengths while never feeling the whip. Finishing another four lengths behind Mylute in third was Mr. Bandini's Band. Bern Identity covered the distance over a fast track in 1:39 2/5.

Broken Dreams snuffs out Kindle in time in Sen. Maddy

Kindle, the 5-2 second choice, blasted right out of the gate in her turf debut. As she sizzled through fractions of :20 4/5 and :42 2/5, Kindle opened up a sizeable margin. Broken Dreams, who was shortening up off a trio of route races, stalked beneath Garrett Gomez, but the 3-1 third choice still had about five lengths to make up at the top of the stretch. The 2-1 favorite Byrama, who had been last early, had even more of a deficit to overcome.

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.

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