Because of an ominous forecast for bitter Arctic cold, compounded by strong winds, the New York Racing Association has decided to cancel its scheduled live race card at Aqueduct Jan. 16. Beulah Park in Ohio also canceled its Jan. 16 program because of frigid temperatures.
Haynesfield picked up his third consecutive victory Jan. 3, warding off a stiff mid-stretch challenge from Mike From Queens and drawing off to a 3 1/2-length victory in the 34th running of the $69.700 Count Fleet Stakes for 3-year-olds at a mile and 70 yards on Aqueduct's fast inner dirt track.
- By Ryan Conley
TVG and the New York Racing Association have reached a two-year agreement on the distribution of NYRA signals, allowing Aqueduct programming to return to the horse racing network Jan. 3.
Gretchen and Roy Jackson have donated $200,000 to the Belmont Child Care Association, it was announced Dec. 23.
Fabulous Strike, coming off a front-running victory in the Fall Highweight Handicap, heads an 8-horse field in the $100,000 Gravesend Handicap (gr. III) Dec. 27 at Aqueduct.
New York Gov. David Paterson is proposing to permit a casino at Belmont racetrack, a move he believes will raise $370 million in a franchise fee payment to the deficit-ridden state.
West Virginia shipper Researcher puts his three-race win streak on the line Dec. 13 at Aqueduct, as the 4-year-old gelding faces his stiffest test yet while battling three graded stakes winners in the $100,000-added Queens County Handicap (gr. III), a 1 3/16-mile trek on the inner track.
The rejuvenated New York Racing Association has big plans for its new 25-year franchise, but president and chief executive officer Charles Hayward said Dec. 9 the organization has to plan wisely should revenue sources dry up.
The Race Track Chaplaincy's New York division has teamed up with Darley USA, a group of local breeders and owners, and a concerned group of Saratoga residents to bring some Christmas joy to approximately 100 people connected to the backstretch community at Saratoga Race Course.
The New York Racing Association will raise the purses on 13 grade I races offered at Aqueduct, Belmont and Saratoga in 2009. The hikes are part of the 2009 NYRA stakes schedule, which was approved by NYRA's Board of Directors at a meeting Dec. 3. It now awaits approval from the New York State Racing and Wagering Board.
Charles Fipke's Tale of Ekati finished a nose behind Stronach Stables' Harlem Rocker when the horses hit the wire in the Nov. 29 Hill 'n' Dale Cigar Mile (gr. I) at Aqueduct, but was placed first after stewards disqualified Harlem Rocker for interference in the stretch. Wanderin Boy was euthanized after fracturing the sesamoids in his left front leg.
Favored Old Fashioned made sure there wasn't a lot of suspense about the outcome of the $200,000 Remsen Stakes (gr. II) for 2-year-olds at Aqueduct Nov. 29. The son of Unbridled's Song grabbed the lead early and then romped to a 7 1/4-length victory in New York.
Charles Fipke's Tale of Ekati won the grade I Hill 'n' Dale Cigar Mile at Aqueduct Nov. 29 when Stronach Stables' Harlem Rocker, who crossed the wire first by a nose, was disqualified and placed second.
Joe Shields' homebred Any Limit makes her first start after not faring too well on the Keeneland Polytrack, one of nine fillies and mares running in the Top Flight Handicap (gr. II) Nov. 28 at Aqueduct.
Idiot Proof will try to rebound from a poor Breeders Cup performance in the Fall Highweight Handicap Nov. 27 at Aqueduct.
Ramon Dominguez hustled Wishful Tomcat to the early lead in the Discovery Handicap and they never looked back, the duo leading every step of the way in posting a 1 3/4-length victory on Aqueduct's main track.
Winter Park Partners' Wishful Tomcat, a late-blooming 3-year-old with four wins in his last five starts, tries to notch his first graded stakes score when he takes on seven rivals in the $100,000-added Discovery Handicap (gr. III) Nov. 22 at Aqueduct.
Carol Nyren's Dry Martini, a two-time graded stakes winner last season, broke into the 2008 win column in a big way Nov. 15, as the 5-year-old went from last-to-first en route to a convincing length victory in the $110,500 Stuyvesant Handicap (gr. III) in the slop at Aqueduct.
Hall of Fame trainer H. Allen Jerkens' first order of business after being released the morning of Nov. 12 from Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation Center was to visit his barn at Belmont Park.
Jayeff B Stables' Strike a Deal, who had been winless for nearly 18 months, finally tasted victory Nov. 8, as the 4-year-old colt stayed close to the pace, struck the front in upper stretch, and pulled away for a resounding seven-length victory in the $150,000 Red Smith Handicap (gr. IIT) on a rainy afternoon at Aqueduct.
German-bred Lauro, fresh off a victory in the Sky Classic (Can-IIT) at Woodbine, looks to make his American debut a winning one Nov. 8 when he takes on eight rivals in the $150,000 Red Smith Handicap (gr. IIT) on the Aqueduct turf.
Jackie Davis, daughter of retired jockey Robbie Davis, recorded her first career victory Nov. 5 in Aqueduct's fifth race aboard Blue Hill Bay for trainer Scott Everett. Blue Hill Bay led all the way around the oval and returned $131 for a $2 win ticket.
Darley Stable's homebred Criticism, just missing in her U.S. debut last month, left no doubt about her winning intentions in her second American start, as the 4-year-old filly took over in upper stretch and pulled away for a one-length victory in the $150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIIT) Nov. 1 on the Aqueduct turf.
When Vinery Stables transferred a handful of horses in-training from Steve Asmussen into the barn of Larry Jones earlier this summer, graded stakes winner Kodiak Kowboy grabbed much of the attention as the highest profile colt changing hands. But when Jones received his new shipment of horses Kodiak Kowboy wasn't necessarily the one he was most excited about. It was 2-year-old colt Friesan Fire.
HRTV's coverage of the sale will be interspersed throughout the network's live airing of the final races from both Churchill Downs and Aqueduct, which begin earlier in the afternoon.
- By Tom Precious
The top Republican in the New York state Legislature is, again, calling on the governor and Democrats to back an effort to bring a casino to Belmont Park.
New York state officials finally gave Delaware North approval to build and operate a video lottery casino at Aqueduct. The racetrack will house New York City's only legal casino, which could generate tens of millions for purses and breeders' awards.
State regulators in New York have begun the process of creating advisory boards to wrestle with issues in the communities surrounding the New York Racing Association's racetracks.
New York Gov. David Paterson selected Delaware North to run a new, sprawling video lottery terminal casino at Aqueduct, sources at the state capital said Oct. 10. But the Senate balked at his choice.
The nation's financial crisis has stepped up efforts to prod state government in New York to select an operator for the long-stalled video lottery terminal casino at Aqueduct, and launched a renewed effort to bring VLTs to Belmont Park.
Big Brown breezed Sept. 30 for the first time since winning the Monmouth Stakes on the grass Sept. 13. The dual classic-winning 3-year-old went five furlongs in 1:04.21 over Aqueduct's main track.
- By Tom Precious
The New York Racing Association, created more than 50 years ago to bolster the Thoroughbred industry, took on a new life Sept. 12 with the formal approval by the state of a new 25-year franchise to exclusively operate Aqueduct, Belmont, and Saratoga racetracks.
- By Tom Precious
The New York Racing Association is expected to emerge from Chapter bankruptcy and make official its 25-year franchise extension Sept. 12.
- By Tom Precious
The new top regulator of racing in New York state offered a tough assessment of an industry he says is in decline in many ways because of its own doing.
- By Tom Precious
The three bidders vying for lucrative rights to develop a casino at Aqueduct racetrack in New York have all passed a critical background check by the state, Governor David Paterson said July 20.
The New York Racing Association has been granted another temporary extension to continue operating during most of the Saratoga meet while it negotiates a final deal with the state for a 25-year franchise.
The outspoken leader of Capital Play, one of the entities vying for the big Aqueduct video lottery casino deal, is stepping down.
Trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. addressed the media at his own request June 27 outside his Aqueduct barn to set the record straight on his 15-day ban in Kentucky for an overage of the bronchial dilator, clenbuterol, in Salute the Count, the runner-up of the Aegon Turf Sprint (gr.III) at Churchill Downs May 2.
The bill is fairly minor in nature, enacting a series of mostly technical amendments to a law approved earlier this year giving NYRA a 25-year extension to run Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga. But NYRA officials have said they could not resolve its bankruptcy proceeding without it.
Charlie Hayward, the president and chief executive officer of the New York Racing Association, spoke about NYRA's ongoing franchise issues during a June 23 press conference in Albany, N.Y., previewing the upcoming Saratoga Race Course meet.
New York officials announced the evening of June 15 a deal to avert the closure of New York City Off-Track Betting Corp. by having the state take over the entity. The move could be a prelude to a statewide consolidation of all OTB corporations.
The state of New York will take over the operations of the New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., Gov. David Paterson announced June 13, as part of a broader plan that could end up consolidating all of the state's OTBs.
Negotiators are eyeing a plan to have the state of New York take over the running of New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., which is threatening to shut down this weekend unless a revenue sharing structure is changed.
A major commercial real estate developer said April 28 it has combined forces with the Hard Rock Entertainment hotel and restaurant chain in a bid with New York state to operate a video lottery terminal casino at Aqueduct.
Peter Vegso's resilient 8-year-old homebred Silver Tree returned to the winner's circle for the first time since last August, stalking the pace and then pulling away in the stretch to win the $100,000 Fort Marcy Handicap (gr. IIIT) by 1 1/2 lengths April 27 on the Aqueduct turf.
Last after a half-mile, Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable's Criminologist began her assault on the lead into the final turn and needed only half the stretch to strike the front, as the 5-year-old mare won by a measured half-length under John Velazquez in the $100,000 Beaugay Handicap (gr. IIIT) April 26 on the Aqueduct turf.
Stronach Stables' homebred Harlem Rocker caught pacesetter J Be K in mid-stretch and drew clear for a convincing 2 1/2-length victory in the $150,000 Withers Stakes (gr. III) April 26 on the Aqueduct dirt, staying undefeated in three starts.
Although he failed to win his most recent start at Gulfstream Park, Peter Vegso's homebred Silver Tree turned in a solid effort in that April 5 race and has been assigned the high weight in the $100,000 Fort Marcy Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct April 27, closing day at the New York track.
Only four other runners will go up against the Shug McGaughey-trained Criminologist in her second start of the season, but those four have solid credentials and equal chances at taking the $100,000 Beaugay Handicap (gr. IIT) at Aqueduct April 26.
Todd Pletcher will saddle half of the four-horse field in the $150,000 Withers Stakes (gr. III), but even favorable odds may not be enough to overcome the talent of J Be K, who goes for his fourth win in five starts April 26 at Aqueduct.
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