Southwest Region

News and features for Southwestern farm owners, racehorse owners, and breeders

Monterey Jazz One to Catch in Texas Mile

Monterey Jazz One to Catch in Texas Mile

On paper, Monterey Jazz is the lone speed in a field of six contesting the $300,000 Texas Mile Stakes (gr. III) April 26 at Lone Star Park. If he kicks clear, there may be no catching the son of Thunderello, who looks for his third graded stakes score in less four months in the one-mile main track event.

Gayego Answers Dirt Question at Oaklawn

Gayego Answers Dirt Question at Oaklawn

After doing all of his running on Southern California's synthetic tracks, favored Gayego proved he has no problem with a conventional dirt surface, either. The Paulo Lobo-trained invader repelled Z Fortune in the stretch run for a three-quarter-length victory in the $1-million Arkansas Derby (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park.

Semaphore Man Flags Foes in Count Fleet

Semaphore Man Flags Foes in Count Fleet

A sloppy track and red-hot pace battle did nothing to slow Semaphore Man, who repelled a challenge from Junior College through the stretch and drew off in the final strides for a front-running 1 1/4-length victory in the $150,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park April 10.

Z Fortune Seeks Redemption in Arkansas

Z Fortune Seeks Redemption in Arkansas

Last year, Steve Asmussen and Robby Albarado teamed up with eventual Horse of the Year Curlin to clobber eight other contenders in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. I). On April 12 at Oaklawn Park the trainer/jockey duo will collaborate again with Zayat Stables' Z Fortune, but this time their starter has a lot to prove.

Norman Awaits Formal Sentencing

Norman Awaits Formal Sentencing

Trainer Cole Norman is awaiting formal sentencing in Garland County Circuit Court after a jury recommended he serve six years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections and be fined $5,000 for his involvement in a fatal automobile accident in February 2007.

Leary to Head Lone Star Communications

Leary to Head Lone Star Communications

Dan Leary has been named director of communications for Lone Star Park in Texas. Leary has nearly three decades of sports public relations experience, including 14 years in the Thoroughbred racing industry at six different racetracks.

Student Council Tops 'Connally Turf

Student Council Tops 'Connally Turf

Millennium Farms' Student Council will try the turf--a surface he's never won over--for the first time since December of 2006 when he tackles seven other starters in the $200,000 John B. Connally Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Sam Houston April 5, but trainer Donnie von Hemel expects Going Ballistic to put up a fight.

Ankle Fracture Sidelines Sierra Sunset

Ankle Fracture Sidelines Sierra Sunset

Sierra Sunset, a three-length winner of the $300,000 Rebel (gr. II) March 15 at Oaklawn Park, has a hairline fracture of his left front ankle and is out of consideration for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainer Jeff Bonde reported.

Proud Spell Bewitches Indian Blessing

Proud Spell Bewitches Indian Blessing

Three days ago, trainer Larry Jones said he hoped Proud Spell would pressure Indian Blessing through the early lead in the Fair Grounds Oaks (gr. II). Although Brereton Jones' homebred Proud Citizen filly didn't exactly do that, she did manage to wear down the Eclipse Award winner and get her own score in the March 8 event in New Orleans.

Proudinsky Tops Daytona at Fair Grounds

Proudinsky Tops Daytona at Fair Grounds

Last December, Gary Tanaka's Proudinsky lost the San Gabriel Handicap (gr. IIT) to the Dan Hendricks-trained Daytona by just three-quarters of a length. But roles were reversed March 8, as Proudinsky nipped Daytona in the stretch of the $600,000 Mervyn Munitz Jr. Memorial Handicap (gr. IIT).

Indian Blessing Heads Fair Grounds Oaks

Indian Blessing Heads Fair Grounds Oaks

In a recent Q&A with Blood-Horse staff writer Jason Shandler, trainer Bob Baffert said the Eclipse Award-winning Indian Blessing is "so talented, I think she can handle anything." The 3-year-old daughter of Indian Charlie will only have to handle three other runners in the $400,000 Fair Grounds Oaks (gr. II) March 8.

Daytona Heads Mervyn Muniz Memorial 'Cap

Daytona Heads Mervyn Muniz Memorial 'Cap

Dan Hendricks saddled Daytona to four consecutive stakes victories in the past five months, his most recent being the Feb. 9 Fair Grounds Handicap (gr. IIIT). In the March 8 Mervyn Muniz Jr. Memorial Handicap (gr. IIT) at Fair Grounds, the trainer looks to extend that streak and add another graded win to his runner's resume.

Grasshopper Good to Go in New Orleans

Grasshopper Good to Go in New Orleans

The $500,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) is shaping up just like the Feb. 9 Mineshaft Handicap (gr. III) did, and that's fine as far as Neil Howard is concerned. The trainer sends 4-year-old Grasshopper to the March 8 event looking for the same form the colt showed in his Mineshaft victory - and Howard fully expects similar results.

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