March 12, 1994
Holy Bull on Florida Derby Day
March 12, 1994
The field entry is the early favorite in Pool 2 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager, which started Thursday, but hardly the commanding choice that it was in the opening pool.
Merv Griffin's improving 3-year-old colt Skipaslew can gain legitimacy as a Kentucky Derby candidate Saturday when he faces nine rivals in the $200,000 El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) at Golden Gate Fields.
You normally don't see a leading Kentucky Derby (gr. I) contender in the seven-furlong Swale Stakes (gr. III), but Buckram Oak Farm's Eurosilver will try sprinting one more time, as he faces five opponents, including the top-class 2-year-old Chapel Royal, who will be making his 3-year-old debut.
Undefeated 3-year-old Rock Hard Ten, impressive in his two victories thus far, is not definite for the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 3, trainer Jason Orman said.
Jockey David Flores expects significant improvement from Action This Day when he rides the champion 2-year-old colt of 2003 in Sunday's $250,000 San Felipe Stakes at 1 1/16 miles.
March 11. 1959
Sword Dancer at Gulfstream Park
Sovereign Award finalist Smoocher will be sporting blinkers and new shoes when he runs in Saturday's $1-million Florida Derby (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park.
Steve Taub's San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) winner Imperialism is headed for the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 3, where he will most likely meet up again with runner-up Lion Heart.
Even though Rafael Becerra feels St Averil could be the best 3-year-old he's ever trained, the 49-year-old native of Mexico prefers not to look past Sunday's $250,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) at 1 1/16 miles.
Paraneck Stable's Redskin Warrior, coming off an impressive victory in the Best Turn Stakes, worked seven furlongs in 1:28 1/5 over the Aqueduct inner track Wednesday, in preparation for the March 20 Gotham Stakes (gr. III).
At first glance the success of Imperialism, the son of a $4,500 mare, appears flukish, but after delving into the thought process that produced the two-time grade II winner, it replays a common refrain in breeding: stamina, plus speed, equals success.
Fountain of Youth (gr. II) winner Read the Footnotes heads a field of 10 in Saturday's $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I), with four horses entering the picture at the 11th hour following last week's defection of Master David.
March 10, 2001
Monarchos in the Florida Derby
A preview of this weekend's feast of big stakes in Florida and California and high-profile allowance races at Gulfstream will come later in the week, but for now, here are a few little appetizers to munch on.
Eclipse champion Action This Day breezed a half-mile in :47 3/5 Tuesday in preparation for Sunday's San Felipe Stakes (gr. II), in which he will face St Averil and the Bob Baffert pair of Odds On and Preachinatthebar.
Fountain of Youth (gr. I) winner Read The Footnotes and Lane's End Breeders' Futurity (gr. II) winner Eurosilver are favored among the individual horses, but the wagering interest that includes "all other 3-year-olds" has been installed as the 3-1 morning line favorite for Pool Two of Churchill Downs' 2004 Kentucky Derby Future Wager.
Trainer Rick Violette feels he has the best horse in Saturday's $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) in sure favorite Read the Footnotes, but admits a pace scenario with Value Plus loose on the lead scares him.
Dogwood Stable's Limehouse, winner of the Feb. 14 Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park, will make his next start in the March 14 Tampa Bay Derby (gr. III) at Tampa Bay Downs in Florida.
March 9, 1977
Seattle Slew at Hialeah
Trainer Bob Baffert, back at his Santa Anita base Monday after concluding a successful trip to New Orleans with a victory in the Louisiana Derby (gr. II), was focusing on this weekend's sophomore stakes, sending out a pair of his top contenders for workouts.
Here we are a week into March and the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) picture is still pretty muddled, with many of the leading contenders either lightly raced and lightly tested this year or uncertain to get the mile and a quarter. But at least the San Rafael (gr. II) and Louisiana Derby (gr. II) provided some stimulating performances.
Undefeated Tapit had his final prep for Saturday's Florida Derby (gr. I), breezing five furlongs in 1:07 Monday at trainer Michael Dickinson's Tapeta Farm, finishing the work uphill and into a stiff head wind.
March 8, 1958
Silky Sullivan at Santa Anita
Though slow to develop, Wimbledon justified trainer Bob Baffert's supreme confidence Sunday, winning the $600,000 Louisiana Derby (gr. II) at Fair Grounds with a superb finishing kick.
Laura de Seroux figures it's better late than never for 94-year-old Sidney Port, who owns Toasted, a 3-year-old colt with designs on next Sunday's $250,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles.
March 7, 1959
Silver Spoon in the Santa Anita Derby
Surging Imperialism shocked even-money favorite Lion Heart in the $200,000 San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Santa Anita, coming from last after a half mile to get up in the final jumps and score a neck victory Saturday.
The "NPZ" saddlecloths of Nick Zito whizzed by one after another Saturday morning, as Zito sent out virtually his entire 3-year-old force for five-furlong breezes at Palm Meadows training center, in preparation for their upcoming preps.
March 6, 1979
Spectacular Bid in the Florida Derby
A field of 11, including shippers from Florida and California, was entered for Sunday's $600,000 Louisiana Derby (gr. II), with the William S. Farish entry of Gradepoint and Breakaway heading a strong local contingent.
Read the Footnotes, winner of the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II), worked a sharp six-furlongs in 1:12 2/5 breezing Friday at Palm Meadows Training Center in preparation for the March 13 Florida Derby (gr. I). The race lost one of its favorites when Master David came down with a fever.
March 5, 1983
Slew o' Gold at Tampa Bay
We've been reading about the same cast of characters for a long time, and no one has really jumped to the head of the class. The second wave, however, has been building in intensity, but is it too late to cause any damage on the first Saturday in May?
Saturday's $200,000 San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) drew an overflow field of 12, including the undefeated Lion Heart, who will be making his 3-year-old debut. With only 10 horses allowed to start, the two outside horses, Spellbinder and Lipan, were placed on the also-eligible list.
By Evan Hammonds -- Action This Day, the champion 2-year-old colt of last year and co-highweight on the Experimental, whose Dosage Index is 1.56, shows, on paper, that his precocity and pedigree has what it takes in the spring of 2004.
March 4, 1969
Top Knight in the Flamingo
A full field of 10 sophomores will go to the post in Saturday's $200,000 San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita, including grade I winner Lion Heart, the likely favorite making his first start of the year.
Rock Hard Ten stamped himself as a prime candidate for the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 3, rolling to a sharp 1-¾ length victory over Teton Forest in a $53,872 allowance event for 3-year-olds Wednesday at Santa Anita Park.
The lineup for the March 13 Florida Derby (gr. I) has gained another stakes-winning contender as Tapit's connections have announced they will enter the colt for the race.
Almost all of the leading contenders for the Visa Triple Crown Challenge, including trainer Nick Zito's highly regarded twosome of Birdstone and Eurosilver, are among 157 nominees to Keeneland's $750,000, Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I). The 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds will be run on Saturday, April 10, three weeks before the Kentucky Derby (gr. I). It will be televised live on NBC from 4:30-6 p.m. (ET).
March 3, 1966
The Chicken Flamingo
Two horses trained by Nick Zito--Birdstone and Eurosilver--top the list of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) contenders compiled by Steve Haskin, senior correspondent for The Blood-Horse. Champion Action This Day follows the top pair.
Neil Howard said Tuesday he will run Risen Star (gr. III) winner Gradepoint in Sunday's $600,000 Louisiana Derby (gr. II), as well as runaway allowance winner Breakaway, both owned by William S. Farish.
Buckram Oak Farm's homebred Eurosilver ranks high on most Kentucky Derby (gr. I) followers' lists, including the one compiled by The Blood-Horse's Steve Haskin, who has the son of Unbridled's Song No. 2 on his Derby Dozen.
Cynics be damned, it's time to see what the Derby gods might be scheming. With the equine version of March Madness starting next weekend, this is the last opportunity in a while to look at the Derby in an ethereal sense.
March 2, 1989
Sunday Silence at Santa Anita
Most Popular Stories
- Arrogate Headed to Dubai World Cup
- Five Share Fastest Time in Fasig-Tipton Sale Works
- Conquest Mo Money Still Undefeated, Sunland Derby Next
- Finger Lakes Horsemen Agree to Deal to Keep Track Open
- Girvin Upsets Risen Star Stakes
- Broken Pelvis Cause of Charismatic's Death
- Horse of the Year Charismatic Dies
- Finger Lakes Season Could be on Line at Feb. 27 Meeting
- Prominent Ohio Breeder George Smith Dies at 84
- Unique Bella Tops Roster of 109 Kentucky Oaks Nominees