Defending champion Mountain General faces a rematch with veteran sprint star Beau's Town in Saturday's $150,000-added Aristides Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Churchill Downs.
Saturday's $100,000-added Aristides Handicap (gr. III) shapes up like an old-fashioned shootout, with the lightning fast Louisiana-based gunslinger Beau's Town invading Churchill Downs to take on a strong group of determined local stars.
Trainer Chuck Simon does not have to search far in looking for a horse that compares with the rising star in his barn, Requiem Stable's contender Strength and Honor, a contender in Saturday's Aristides Handicap (gr. III) at Churchill Downs.
Churchill Downs is changing the dates of two races on its spring-summer stakes schedule in an effort to coordinate its program with that of Calder Race Course, another track owned by Churchill Downs Inc.
Orientate took an early lead and pulled away down the stretch to win the Aristides by 4 1/2 lengths Saturday at Churchill Downs. Orientate's victory foiled Bet On Sunshine's attempt to win the stakes race for the third straight year, as the 10-year-old checked home a non-threatening fourth.
He might be 10 years old, but David Holloway's Bet On Sunshine is preparing to compete in the June 29 Aristides Handicap, a grade III event he has won the past two years.
Nine-year-old Bet On Sunshine won the $108,400 Aristides Handicap for the second consecutive year on Saturday, and for the second straight year the Paul McGee-trained gelding set a stakes record in winning the 6 1/2-furlong Churchill Downs contest. On a fast track, Bet On Sunshine stopped the timer in 1:14.79, finishing 3 1/2 lengths ahead of Alannan.
Bet On Sunshine earned his fourth consecutive victory and broke the Churchill Downs course record for 6 1/2 furlongs in Saturday's $109,700 Aristides Handicap.
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