"Most likely (California Chrome) will be in front of us early on," said Rajiv Maragh, rider of Wicked Strong. "...We'll have to go by in the stretch. I've had a couple of dreams the last few nights that I pass him.
A historical look at the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), the third jewel of the Triple Crown. view infographic
It's time to remind breeders and broadcasters alike that stamina still exists in America and remains an essential part of breeding classic winners.
In preparations similar to trainer Nick Zito's handling of Birdstone between his off-the-board Kentucky Derby (gr. I) finish and his victory in the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), Wicked Strong appears to be progressing.
While Coastline and Conquest Titan have not yet registered breakthrough graded stakes victories, trainer Mark Casse sees some positive signs as they prepare for their most important stakes races to date.
Grade II winner Birdrun has been retired from racing to stand at Robin Murphy's Poplar Creek Horse Farm near Bethel, Ohio. His fee is $2,000.
"He was just getting better... He matured and had filled out nicely. He was more rounded and he was more settled."--trainer John Servis on Smarty Jones at the time of his Rebel Stakes win.
The Japan Bloodhorse Breeders' Association has confirmed that 2009 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Summer Bird died Dec. 23 in Japan due to colic.
Grindstone, the first Kentucky Derby winner to stand in the state of Oregon, will see several of his 2-year-olds make their debuts on Oregon Championship Day Nov. 17 at Portland Meadows.
Gainesway's benchmark stallion Tapit will stand the 2014 season for $150,000, the Lexington farm announced Nov. 6 in releasing its stud fees for the coming year.
Odds-on pick Conquest Titan, with Eurico Rosa da Silva in the irons, broke his maiden in style at Woodbine Aug. 24 in the $119,552 Swynford Stakes for 2-year-olds.
Trainer Nick Zito reflects on what Saratoga means to him. Nick tells his story of the 2004 Travers with Birdstone, The Cliff's Edge and Marylou Whitney. watch video
Just looking at recent history, eight of the previous dozen Belmont Stakes winners were by sires who won grade I races at 1 1/4 miles or longer, including three winners by previous Belmont Stakes winners.
Climbing like the temperature, the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s Spring Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training continued its record march April 24, posting another day of positive returns.
Summer Bird, a three-time grade I winner and champion 3-year-old of 2009, has been purchased by the Japan Bloodhorse Breeders' Association and will take up stud duty in Japan, WinStar Farm announced Nov. 13.
The strong pace continued Sept. 15 at the Keeneland September yearling sale, with double-digit gains in gross, average, and median.
Racing Officials at Sunland Park have renamed the Borderland Derby in honor of Mine That Bird, upset winner of the 2009 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Smarty Jones was "The People's Horse" as he went for the Triple Crown in 2004, but Marylou Whitney's Birdstone spoiled the party for a record crowd at Belmont Park.
Gainesway Farm announces their stud fees for 2012; leading sire Tapit, sire of Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) winner Hansen to stand for $125,000.
Positive ontrack signals at Emerald Downs, Hastings Park, may add some pop to the 120-yearling WTOBA yearling sale Sept. 6 in Auburn, Wash.
Steve Haskin on Smarty's only defeat and the height of Smartymania. Read Blog
Glitterman, a world-record-equaling sprinter and sire of 64 stakes horses, was euthanized April 14 at Old Friends equine retirement farm near Georgetown, Ky.
Tapit, who stands at the Beck family's Gainesway Farm near Lexington, has enjoyed such a successful season that his fee has been upped to $80,000 from $50,000.
Mine That Bird, who stunned the racing world when he won the 2009 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) at 50-1 odds, has been retired.
The Birdstone gelding hasn't won since scoring an upset in last year's Kentucky Derby Presented By Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Ben P. Walden, Jr., owner of Pauls Mill Farm, announced June 7 that Summer Bird will enter stud in 2011 at his farm near Versailles, Ky.
Summer Bird, unable to make it back from a fracture suffered while training for the Japan Cup Dirt, has been retired.
New Mexico state representative Candy Spence Ezzell recognized Mine That Bird as "New Mexico Horse of the Year for 2009." The memorial passed the state's House of Representatives Feb. 11 unanimously by a vote of 70-0.
- By Steve Haskin
Jayaraman's colt won grade I Belmont, Travers, and Jockey Club Gold Cup.
Birdstone, sire of two of the three United States classic winners this year, will stand in 2010 for $30,000, up from $10,000, at the Beck family's Gainesway Farm near Lexington.
Overbrook Farm stallion Grindstone will continue his stallion career at veterinarian Jack Root's Oakhurst Equine Farm near Newberg, Ore., according to Ric Waldman, Overbrook's advisor and manager of stallion operations.
Summer Bird continued his meteoric rise to the top of the nation's 3-year-old ranks, as he rolled through the slop for an easy 3 1/2-length score in the $1-million Shadwell Travers (gr. I) Aug. 29 at Saratoga.
With the weak economy continuing to have a negative impact on all sorts of businesses, Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. executive Tom Ventura has modest expectations for the auction firm's August yearling sale in Central Florida.
The Oklahoma City yearling sale, scheduled for Aug. 24 in Oklahoma, has 113 horses in its catalog, including a close relative to the $2.8-million Storm Cat – Onaga colt that topped the recent Fasig-Tipton Saratoga select yearling auction. The yearling, by Storm Cat's grandson Lion Heart, is out of a full sister to Onaga, according to the auction's sales manager, Terri Carter.
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
The weekend brought a couple of new players to the 3-year-old scene and also underlined just how strong the second-crop sires are.
The Fasig-Tipton July select yearling sale, held July 20-21 in Lexington, ended with significant setbacks in gross revenue, average price, and median price, but managed to lower its buy-back rate from a year ago slighty. Read what sale company officials and sale participants had to say about the market.
The declines were in line with expectations during the opening session of the Fasig-Tipton July select yearling sale. Buyers and consignors had predicted the market would be down significantly, and there were no surprises July 20 in Lexington.
Sheikh Mohammed's agent, John Ferguson, went to $400,000 to acquire a son of Birdstone as the top-priced offering at the opening session of the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling sale in Lexington July 20.
Mark Allen, the co-owner of Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Mine That Bird, said the gelding will appear in New Mexico in September.
Summer Bird, winner of the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) in his last effort, breezed five furlongs in 1:01 4/5 the morning of July 12 at Monmouth Park.
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
Similarities in the pedigrees of Summer Bird (by Birdstone) and Gabby's Golden Gal (by Medaglia d'Oro) provide some insights into the bloodlines of their young sires.
It was a bird that won the June 6 Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park, but it was not Mine That Bird but rather Summer Bird that won the final leg of the Triple Crown.
Nothing seems to faze Mine That Bird, and lately, nothing seems to faze his trainer, Chip Woolley, either. There is a reason.
After working Mine That Bird June 1 at Churchill Downs, jockey Calvin Borel "guaranteed" that the gelded son of Birdstone would win the June 6 Belmont Stakes (gr. I). Believe it or not, Borel is now even more confident.
The "other" son of Birdstone being pointed toward the Belmont Stakes, Summer Bird represents the successful racing and breeding operation of Drs. Kalarikkal K. and Vilasini Devi Jayaraman.
MAHUBAH'S CORNER, by Avalyn Hunter
Thanks to Mine That Bird and Rachel Alexandra, respectively, both Birdstone and Medaglia d'Oro have achieved the distinction of becoming Classic sires with their first crops. But how much of a boost will it really give them?
One of the closest Kentucky Derby finishes came in 1996, when Grindstone nipped Cavonnier at the wire. Grindstone today stands at the Young family's Overbrook Farm.
Summer Bird worked six furlongs in 1:15 4/5 the morning of April 24 at Churchill Downs in preparation for a run at the May 2 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands.
Mine That Bird earned his fourth consecutive win Oct. 5 at Woodbine when he edged pacesetter Bear's Conductor by a half-length in the $232,100 Grey Breeders' Cup Stakes (Can-III) for 2-year-olds.
Birdstone notched his first winner when his son S. S. Stone won at Hollywood Park on June 29 in his initial race.
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