Lucarno swept to the front with one furlong left to easily capture the 231st Ladbrokes St. Leger Stakes (Eng-I) at Doncaster Sept. 15.
Tale of Ekati had a couple of excuses if he did not score in the $250,000 Futurity Stakes (gr. II). But thanks to a brilliant ride by jockey Eibar Coa and a thunderous move in the final 16th, the 2-year-old colt won the important juvenile prep by two lengths over favorite Kodiak Kowboy at Belmont Park Sept. 15.
Dance Away Capote left no doubts as to who was best in the $113,500 Noble Damsel Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park Sept. 15. The filly came flying through the stretch to win.
Proud Spell was a bit further off the pace than she had been in her first two career starts, but a decisive four-wide move around the final turn was plenty good enough, as the Larry Jones-trained filly scored by three lengths in the $250,000 Matron Stakes (gr. II) Sept. 15 at Belmont.
A Spanish owner and a British trainer are overheard conversing in French following a grade I victory on turf. Welcome to the Belmont Park fall meeting. It is here that the best American grass horses and their trainers and owners get their annual reality check from Europe's advance guard.
The Green Monkey, a $16-million 2-year-old purchase at auction, is scheduled to make his much-anticipated racing debut at Belmont Park in the fourth race Sept. 15.
All eyes in the racing world will be on Rags to Riches when she runs in the $250,000 Gazelle Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park Sept. 15.
A wide-open field was drawn for the $100,000-added Noble Damsel (g. IIIT) at Belmont Park Sept. 15. Not much separates the 10 fillies and mares entered in the one-mile race over the Widener Turf.
The expectations were fairly modest for Katierich Stables' Miss Red Delicious, especially after finishing seventh in her racing debut at Keeneland this spring. But now the 2-year-old filly finds herself smack in the middle of the $250,000 Matron Stakes (gr. II) Sept. 15 at Belmont Park.
Kodiak Kowboy has already established himself as the clear leader of the juvenile division. Now the son of Posse, out of the Coronado's Quest mare Kokadrie, will try to further cement that distinction as he headlines a field of six in the $250,000 Futurity Stakes (gr. II) Sept. 15 at Belmont Park.
Tiz Wonderful, a graded stakes winner and undefeated 2-year-old last year, suffered a career-ending and potentially life-threatening suspensory injury and is being treated at New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa.
Better Talk Now, a multiple grade I winner, has recovered from a puncture wound he suffered in July and August and is back in serious training at his Fair Hill, Md., home base, trainer Graham Motion said Sept. 12.
James Tafel's Street Sense, winner of this year's Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), turned in a solid five-furlong work at Churchill Downs Sept. 11 in his first major training move since a victory in the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Aug. 25.
Following another blowout by Lawyer Ron in Saturday's Woodward Stakes (gr. I), we're down to one champion-caliber older horse who looks capable of withstanding this year's 3-year-old juggernaut in the Breeders' Cup Classic Powered by Dodge (gr. I).
A long-range look at how the Breeders' Cup Classic Powered by Dodge (gr. I) is shaping up, ranked in order, and with the latest odds in the Wynn Las Vegas Race Book.
Officials at Monmouth Park said Aug. 28 that "due to great demand," additional tickets are available for the Saturday, Oct. 27, Breeders' Cup World Championships.
In a sign of the times, a Midwest also-ran with a liking for Polytrack came west to win the $1-million Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar Aug. 19. Student Council, purchased recently by Ro Parra's Millennium Farms to run in the 1 1/4-mile test, vanquished Lava Man and upset a large field at odds of 23-1 at Del Mar.
Crossing The Line came into the $400,000 Del Mar Mile (gr. IIT) with only two races under his belt on American soil, both of them allowance victories at Hollywood Park. But in his first career graded stakes try, the 5-year-old gelding showed a finishing kick that would make even the best American-turfer envious, blowing by a host of rivals in the stretch to steal a victory in near record-breaking fashion.
Greg's Gold, who returned earlier this year from a 17-month layoff after bowing a tendon, completed his comeback for trainer David Hofmans Aug. 19 with a 1 1/2-length victory in the $300,000 Pat O'Brien Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) over seven furlongs on the Del Mar Polytrack.
For the second time in three weeks, a Christophe Clement trainee shipped into Del Mar from New York to win a grade I event when Virginia Kraft-Payson's Rutherienne left favored Valbenny behind in the stretch for a two-length win in the Del Mar Oaks Aug. 18.
Entering the 127th running of the Alabama (gr. I), all the talk was about Octave, who had won consecutive grade I races in New York this summer, one of them over Lady Joanne. This time, Lady Joanne was not to be denied.
Back on June 23, Gottcha Gold defeated Lawyer Ron by a neck in the Salvator Mile Handicap (gr. III) at Monmouth Park. Bettors apparently considered that a fluke, as they let the son of Coronado's Quest go off at odds of 15-1 in the $300,000 Philip H. Iselin Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Monmouth Aug. 18. But the 4-year-old colt blew past his seven rivals to take the 1 1/8-mile route in convincing fashion.
With one week remaining until the $1-million Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course, top trainers in New York are aiming for a single target in the stalwart form of Street Sense, who will head up the field of the Aug. 25 "midsummer Derby" with a solid bullseye on his back.
The biggest concern for trainer Paula Capestro heading into the $200,000 Rancho Bernardo Handicap (gr. III) was how her red-hot filly River's Prayer would handle Del Mar's Polytrack in her first start on a synthetic surface. In spite of drifting out some late, the California-bred proved best while winning her fifth successive race Aug. 17 by a half-length over Strong Faith.
There was the rubber match between Street Sense and Curlin in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I). Didn't Happen. There was the showdown between the two in the Travers Stakes (gr. I). Not going to happen. There was Rags to Riches headlining Lady's Day at Belmont for the CCA Oaks (gr. I). Didn't Happen. There was Rags in the Saratoga limelight for the Alabama. Not going to happen.
It was exactly noon when the Brook Ledge van came to a stop at the loading ramp on the Oklahoma training track, a short distance from Todd Pletcher's barn. Arriving from Belmont Park following the four-hour ride was the queen of American racing, Rags to Riches. This was a scene many thought would never be played out.
Ogden Mills "Dinny" Phipps, a member of the original National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors, recently offered his views on the organization after stepping down from the board.
Street Sense is back and so is Rags to Riches. All is once again right with the racing world. If Curlin emerges victorious from next week's Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I), then the Breeders' Cup World Championships will have the star power it so desperately needs.
It may be a foregone conclusion that many of the horses that win Breeders' Cup Challenge races would qualify for the World Championships anyway, but the first of six "Win and You're In" programs is said to have done much for recognition of Breeders' Cup and racetrack business.
Breeders' Cup president and chief executive officer Greg Avioli said the organization hopes to achieve a number of goals with the newly created Breeders' Cup Challenge.
The 10-cent superfectas that have become popular at North American racetracks will make their Breeders' Cup World Championships debut at Monmouth Park Oct. 26-27.
Any number of horses -- Lava Man, Street Sense, Rags to Riches, Papi Chullo, Sun King, Any Given Saturday, and Curlin -- could fill the void left by the recent departures of some of racing's biggest stars.
The economic impact of Monmouth Park hosting the Oct. 26-27 Breeders' Cup World Championships is estimated to be $57.6 million, according to a study released by the Center for Urban Policy Research at Rutgers University in New Brunswick.
Though Breeders' Cup this year will add a second championship day of racing, post positions for all 11 Breeders' Cup World Championships races will be drawn on one day.
Officials of Breeders' Cup Limited and six of the nation's premier racetracks launched the Breeders' Cup Challenge, a series of 24 officially sanctioned qualifying stakes races for the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
Rags to Riches appeared to be sound and in good condition after being examined by Dr. Steve Allday July 23 at Belmont Park.
Breeders' Cup president and chief executive officer Greg Avioli will be the guest for the July 26 edition of bloodhorse.com "Talkin' Horses," sponsored by AIRshod.
Having the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs a record sixth time and a hike in nomination fees for some stallion owners resulted in a financial boon for Breeders' Cup Ltd. during fiscal 2006.
Thirteen individuals have been elected to the Breeders' Cup board of members and trustees from a field of 25 candidates, the organization announced June 27.
Breeders' Cup will get some major-league media exposure June 22 when two racing industry participants address attendees at the Associated Press Sports Editors Convention in St. Louis, Mo.
Ticket applications for the 2007 Breeders' Cup World Championships must be received at Monmouth Park by June 6 to be included in a random drawing that will determine the order in which tickets applications will be processed.
The board of directors of Breeders' Cup Limited named Gregory Avioli as the organization's president and chief executive officer at a Lexington meeting Thursday, April 19. Avioli, 42, had been serving as the interim president and CEO since June of last year.
Breeders' Cup Limited has released logos for the 24th Breeders' Cup World Championships--which will be held Oct. 26-27 at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J.--and for the Breeders' Cup Challenge, which will be used in conjunction with 25 sanctioned major stakes races, whose winners automatically qualify for the Championships.
A record number of foals were nominated to the Breeders' Cup program in 2006, and now a record 52% of the eligible North American foal crop can participate in the program.
The group I Hong Kong Jockey Club Champions Mile will become the first race held outside the United States in the new Breeders' Cup Challenge, a series of official qualifying races for the Breeders' Cup World Championships, officials of Breeders' Cup Limited announced Feb. 23 in conjunction with the Hong Kong Jockey Club.
Grey Goose Vodka has signed on as the name-in-title sponsor of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) under a multi-year agreement.
Round Pond, winner of the 2006 Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), could return to competition in March at Gulfstream Park.
The Breeders' Cup board of directors plans to explore the possibility of seeking a title sponsor for the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
The Breeders' Cup World Championships will have a new look at first-time host Monmouth Park this year--an expanded two-day event that will inaugurate three $1-million stakes designed to accommodate owners and breeders.
A Jan. 6 dinner will honor the breeders of winners of 2006 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships races.
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