BREEDERS' CUP FEATURE
BREEDERS' CUP FEATURE
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.
Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes winner Sky Lantern was confirmed on Monday for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, according to trainer Richard Hannon's website.
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.
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.
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.
Game on Dude headed a parade of heavyweight hopefuls Sunday morning prepping for the Breeders' Cup at Santa Anita as the countdown began in earnest for the 28th World Championship events at The Great Race Place on November 2-3.
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.
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.
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.
Hessonite, a troubled fifth in the Grade 1 Flower Bowl Invitational on September 29, remains on target for a title defense run in the $175,000 Ticonderoga on October 20, New York Showcase Day, at Belmont Park.
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.
Millionaires Musketier and Rahystrada, with a combined 11 graded/group victories between them, head a field of seven turf marathoners entered for Thursday's 18th running of the Grade 3, $100,000 Sycamore going 1 1/2 miles on the Keeneland grass.
"Winning a Grade 1 at Keeneland -- it doesn't get any better than that," Steve Laymon said Sunday morning, one day after Dayatthespa's front-running, two-length victory in the 29th edition of the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup.
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.
While the Florida Stallion Stakes sweep by jockey Angel Serpa was the lead story at the 21st annual Festival of the Sun at Calder Race Course on Saturday, the headlines coming out of the day could be made by Bruce Hollander and Cary Shapoff's Csaba, the three-year-old colt who put the sword to his rivals when winning the Tropical Park Derby by 14 lengths.
Lucky Primo just missed by a neck in last year's California Cup Classic at Santa Anita, but returned for Saturday's 23rd running to make up for that tough beat with a half-length score in the $175,000 contest.
The six-furlong sprint for maiden two-year-olds was declared a no contest by track stewards as a result of a loose horse running the wrong way up the homestretch. Spinning Love was away in good order, but as he left the chute he hesitated and then jumped to his left, over the temporary inside rail, unseating jockey Alonso Quinonez. He proceeded to run the wrong way along the inside rail through the clubhouse turn and into the stretch.
Trainer Jimmy Toner notched his second graded stakes win of the day when AJ Suited Stable's Two Months Rent upset Saturday's Grade 3, $200,000 Hawthorne Derby. Contested in a driving Chicago area rainstorm on soft turf, Two Months Rent saved ground to the stretch, split rivals to reach contention and wore down 10-1 chance Film Shot to record his initial stakes victory by a head. At 20-1, Two Months Rent returned $43.20, $16.20 and $7.
Phipps Stable's Boisterous rallied boldly to the lead in the midstretch and drew clear to two-length decision in Saturday's Grade 3, $150,000 Knickerbocker Stakes, capturing the 1 1/8-mile turf affair at Belmont Park for the second straight year. Now a five-time stakes winner for trainer Shug McGaughey, the five-year-old horse has earned $646,390 from a 20-8-1-2 career line.
BREEDERS' CUP FEATURE
Ralph Nabavi's Speak Logistics was never headed en route to a 2 3/4-length score Saturday on Calder's Festival of the Sun program, going gate-to-wire in the $300,000 In Reality division of the Florida Stallion Stakes series.
Nearly six months after her impressive wire job in the Grade 3 Appalachian Stakes at Keeneland, Dayatthespa returned to the Lexington, Kentucky, turf and repeated the feat in Saturday's Grade 1, $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup. The Chad Brown trainee got away with a leisurely pace for Javier Castellano, quickened stylishly, and extended her 2012 mark to a perfect five-for-five.
Phillips Racing Partnership's La Cloche took down the field in the Grade 3, $150,000 Athenia at Belmont on Saturday.
In a virtual replay of the Frances A. Genter one race earlier, Larry Fugate's Cash Rules just held the late run of Ducduc on the wire of the Grade 3, $100,000 Spend a Buck Handicap on Calder's Festival of the Sun program Saturday.
It's good news, bad news for Mike Machowsky concerning the Breeders' Cup. The bad news: Caracortado will not make the Turf Sprint at Santa Anita on November 3. The good: Worth Repeating is on course for the Marathon at 1 3/4 miles on dirt on November 2.
Like the top-class colts Dawn Approach and Reckless Abandon, the juvenile filly Just the Judge preserved an unbeaten record when she registered a gutsy 1 3/4-length success in the Group 2 Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket Saturday.
Dawn Approach made it six out of six when registering a comfortable 2 3/4-length success in Saturday's Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes. Partnered by Kevin Manning, the 3-10 favorite briefly looked as if he may be in trouble, but showed a devastating turn of foot in the final furlong to push aside stablemate Leitir Mor.
Connections of Madame Giry and Bounding Bi, the top-two finishers in Friday's Franklin County Stakes at Keeneland, reported their runners came out of the 5 1/2-furlong grass test in good order.
Breeders' Cup Classic hopeful Golden Ticket, dead-heat winner of the Grade 1 Travers two back, turned in his second-straight work at Keeneland on Saturday. With Danny Ramsey aboard, the Speightstown colt worked five furlongs in 1:00 1/5.
Three-time classic winner Camelot is scheduled to race on as a four-year-old next season, Coolmore Stud reiterated via Twitter on Saturday. The Montjeu colt just underwent exploratory surgery for colic Thursday evening, but is recovering well.
Grade 1 Haskell Invitational star Paynter, who underwent intestinal surgery at New Bolton Center October 3, will be discharged Sunday, owner Ahmed Zayat reported on Twitter Friday. Having overcome life-threatening illnesses that have kept him hospitalized since August 26, the strong-willed colt will now take up residence at a rehabilitation facility to be announced at 6 p.m. (EDT).
Nutmeg Stable's Madame Giry rallied in the stretch of Friday's $100,000 Franklin County Stakes at Keeneland to post an easy 2 1/2-length victory under jockey Eddie Castro. The sophomore daughter of Castledale earned her fifth-straight win when completing 5 1/2 furlongs on the firm turf in 1:03 for trainer Cam Gambolati.
Clive Cox's star juvenile Reckless Abandon is looking to extend his unbeaten record to five in the Group 1, £150,000 Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday.
The entries for Sunday's Grade 1, C$1.5 million Canadian International are dominated by Europeans, both quantitatively and qualitatively. Seven of the 11 contenders are based on the other side of the pond, including the Aidan O'Brien-trained Imperial Monarch; 2010 Canadian International winner Joshua Tree; Wigmore Hall, two-for-two in his previous visits to Woodbine; and Reliable Man, last year's Group 1 French Derby hero. The North American team comprises Al Khali, Air Support, Prince Will I Am and an ex-European in Forte dei Marmi.
Group 2 star Dream Peace, who was third in a three-way photo in last year's Grade 1 E.P. Taylor Stakes, looks for a breakthrough in Sunday's renewal of the C$1 million prize at Woodbine. A French raider here 12 months ago, the well-bred daughter of Dansili is now an emigre who resides in the Chad Brown barn. To accomplish her mission, Dream Peace must fend off a formidable European invasion spearheaded by her former compatriot Siyouma, England's Barefoot Lady and Ireland's Princess Highway.
Three-time European classic hero Camelot has come through exploratory surgery for colic in good order, according to Coolmore Stud's Twitter page.
Fair Grounds Race Course will begin accepting Clubhouse and box seat reservations for the 141st Thoroughbred racing season on October 22, one month prior to the traditional opening on Thanksgiving Day, November 22.
Spendthrift Farm's homebred Moonwalk lived up to her name on Thursday in the Grade 3, $150,000 Jessamine by slipping through on the inside to score a nose victory under jockey Corey Lanerie. The Dale Romans trainee just held as Kitten's Point rallied late on the outside, but managed to hold on while finishing 1 1/16 miles on the firm Keeneland turf in 1:45.
The Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) announced Thursday that several industry groups, including 13 prominent breeding farms in Kentucky, The Jockey Club, two racetracks of the Stronach Group, the California Retirement Management Account (CARMA), Keeneland Association, Fasig-Tipton, Barretts Equine Limited and Ocala Breeders' Sales Company (OBS), have developed plans to provide funds beginning in 2013 to support the TAA's mission to accredit and raise funds for Thoroughbred aftercare facilities.
John Scott, who appears to have found a new lease on life at age five, heads a competitive eight-horse field in Saturday's $175,000 California Cup Classic, a race which headlines Santa Anita's 23rd annual Cal Cup Day for horses bred or foaled in the Golden State.
Calder will present a stakes-filled afternoon of racing as part of the 21st annual Festival of the Sun on Saturday that will feature the conclusion of the lucrative Florida Stallion Stakes series, with both the $300,000 In Reality Division and its juvenile filly counterpart, the $300,000 My Dear Girl Division, to be run over 1 1/16 miles on the main track.
Keeneland and Woodbine Entertainment Group were declared co-winners of this year's Simulcast Award at the International Simulcast Conference in Clearwater Beach, Florida. The award gives both tracks the distinction of becoming five-time winners of the prestigious contest. The crystal trophies were sponsored by Post Time Technologies.
Grade 1 winners Samitar and Stephanie's Kitten headline a field of eight sophomore fillies entered for Saturday's 29th running of the Grade 1, $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at Keeneland.
SANTA ANITA NOTEBOOK
Keeneland racing secretary Ben Huffman expects at least eight names, with the possibility of a couple more, to be in the entry box Wednesday for Saturday's 29th running of the Grade 1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at 1 1/8 miles on the turf for three-year-old fillies.
Belmont Park will host a pair of Grade 3 turf stakes Saturday, with Grade 2 winner Boisterous returning for a title defense in the $150,000 Knickerbocker and multiple stakes queen Dealbata highlighting the field in the $150,000 Athenia. Both events are scheduled for the inner turf.