Bobby Frankel's Aspen Gal could be the class of a wide-open field of 10 3-year-old fillies battling on Santa Anita Park's hillside turf course in Sunday's $100,000 La Habra Stakes. A victory in the La Habra, which is run at about 6 ½ furlongs, would be the richest career win for any filly in the field.
With Medaglia d'Oro's brilliant victory in the Donn Handicap (gr. I), it looks as if the next stop is Nad al Sheba Race Course and the juicy $6 million pot that awaits him in the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I). But this won't be the colt's first trip to the desert.
Favored Master David won a game stretch battle in the $81,400 Sham Stakes for 3-year-olds at Santa Anita Sunday by a length as 2003 juvenile champion Action This Day ran a close fourth.
Stonerside Stable's homebred Miss Coronado, shipping from Southern California and making her first start on the dirt, held off Eye Dazzler, Society Selection and Last Song in going gate to wire to win the $150,000 Davona Dale (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies Saturday at Gulfstream Park.
The first major showdown of the 2004 season takes place at Gulfstream Park Saturday as Funny Cide, last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner, meets Medaglia d'Oro, one of the best older horses in training, in the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at 1 1/8 miles.
A new, improved version of Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Pleasantly Perfect will make his first start since winning the $4-million race last October when he goes to the gate for Saturday's $250,000 San Antonio Handicap (gr. II), also at Santa Anita.
The race for 2004's leading older horse gets underway with the Feb. 7 $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park. The Donn Handicap is expected to lure a field of six or seven of the top handicap horses in the nation, led by Sackatoga Stable's classic winning champion Funny Cide.
By all accounts, 2002 was Bobby Frankel's year. He had 60 stakes wins from January to December, $17,748,340 in earnings, won 24% of all his races, trained two Eclipse Award finalists, and earned an Eclipse himself. Then came 2003.
Juddmonte Farms, Bobby Frankel, Jerry Bailey and Sightseek, each on the verge of winning an Eclipse Award Monday night in Florida, are set to tackle six rivals Sunday in the $250,000 Santa Monica Handicap (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park.
Sightseek hasn't run since finishing a disappointing fourth, beaten 10 ½ lengths as the 3-5 favorite, in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) last Oct. 25, but Bobby Frankel is unconcerned about her going seven furlongs in a tough field after a three-month layoff.
Trainer Bobby Frankel entered Midas Eyes as an entry with Peace Rules in Saturday's $1 million Barretts/CTBA Classic, the marquee race on Sunshine Millions Day at Santa Anita Park, but the son of Touch Gold will only run if the weather turns inclement, which is not likely.
Stan Fulton's Santa Catalina Stakes (gr. II) winner St Averil will continue on down the California trail to the Triple Crown, trainer Rafael Becerra said Sunday morning.
Trainer Bobby Frankel, who was considering the Sunshine Million Classic instead of the $300,000 Padua Stables Sprint at Gulfstream Park for Midas Eyes, called another audible Sunday morning. He said the son of Touch Gold would be pointed to the $300,000 Strub Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita on Feb. 7.
Master David, a distant second to Read the Footnotes in the Remsen Stakes (gr. II) Nov. 30, heads a field of nine entered for Saturday's $150,000 Santa Catalina Stakes (gr. II), a 1 1/16-mile test for 3-year-olds at Santa Anita.
Bobby Frankel, who did not participate in last year's inaugural $3.6 million Sunshine Millions, plans to have four startes in the 2004 series, which pits Florida and California breds in a series of eight stakes races at Gulfstream and Santa Anita parks.
Michael Bello's Megahertz took advantage of a slow early pace as the 5-year-old British-bred mare unleashed a quick turn of foot in the last quarter-mile to win the San Gorgiono Handicap (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita on Saturday.
You, who would have been one of the top draws at next week's Keeneland January sale, has been withdrawn from the auction.
Trainer Eoin Harty expects a solid effort from the Irish-bred mare Firth of Lorne in Saturday's $150,000 San Gorgonio Handicap (gr. IIT) for older fillies and mares at 1 1/8 miles on the turf.
The Malibu Stakes (gr. I), which features the return to competition of Buddy Gil and a trio from the Bobby Frankel barn, highlights Friday's opening day card at Santa Anita Park.
Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. benefited from the spirit of the season when Stronach Stables' Thunder Blitz, conditioned by Bobby Frankel but stabled at Aqueduct for the inner track season, pulled a mild upset in the $108,300 Queens County Handicap (gr. III) Saturday.
Master David, who was second in the Remsen Stakes (gr. II) to Read the Footnotes, will be sent to Bobby Frankel at Hollywood Park to prepare for next year's Triple Crown.
A competitive and well-matched field of eight will contest the 25th edition of the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) Saturday at Hollywood Park.
With her usual late charge, Juddmonte Farm's Heat Haze gave trainer Bobby Frankel his 25th grade I victory in a scorching finish of the $500,000 Matriarch (gr. IT) for fillies and mares at Hollywood Park Sunday.
Watchem Smokey, ridden by Julie Krone for trainer Bobby Frankel, came from well off the pace to post a one-length victory over Our New Recruit in the $100,000 Vernon O. Underwood Stakes (gr. III) at Hollywood Park Thursday.
Fresh off a dominant victory in the Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. I), Argentine-bred Avanzado will attempt to reaffirm his standing as California's premier sprinter in Thursday's $100,000 Vernon O. Underwood (gr. III) at Hollywood Park.
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel has cancelled plans to ship a pair of grade I winning stars, Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro and Juddmonte Farm's Sightseek, to Churchill Downs to compete in the $1.2 million "Big Four Weekend" of stakes competition.
Trainer Bobby Frankel broke Charlie Whittingham's Hollywood Park record for most victories in Saturday's $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup (gr. IT), but it took about 15 minutes for stewards to decide which of two horses he accomplished the feat with.
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel tied Charlie Whittingham's all-time record for victories at Hollywood Park Friday night when Irish-bred Anja won the fifth race to give Frankel his 859th win at the Inglewood track.
Megahertz, a 4-year-old filly, will seek to become the second female to win the $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup (gr. IT) in the 1 1/2-mile grass test on Saturday.
Lion Heart, a $1.4-million purchase, toyed with four rivals en route to a six-length victory in stakes record time under jockey Mike Smith in Saturday's $100,000 Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) for 2-year-olds.
Bobby Frankel, the nation's leading trainer with a North American record $17.8 million in purses, will saddle two horses in the $70,000 Bien Bien Stakes Tuesday when Hollywood Park opens its 23rd Autumn Meet with a special Veterans' Day card.
Bobby Frankel, back after a nine-day honeymoon in Barbados, is regrouping his forces, and will likely run Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) runner-up Medaglia d'Oro in the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 28.
The scariest thing about trainer Bobby Frankel setting a North American single-season earnings record on Halloween is that there are still two months left in 2003.
By Ray Paulick -- The 20th running of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships had everything a racing fan could ask for: heart-pounding finishes; championship performances, boxcar mutuels, and human interest stories.
Dick Mandella's remarkable achievement of four Breeders' Cup victories highlighted an unforgettable afternoon of racing. But there were other heroes, and other thoughts to ponder.
Trainer Bob Baffert said Stonerside Stable's Congaree, who set the pace in the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I) before finishing fourth, will make his next start in the Cigar Mile Handicap (gr. I) Nov. 29 at Aqueduct.
The stage is set for an exciting start to the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I), as Medaglia d'Oro and Congaree, drew side by side, in posts eight and nine, respectively.
Edmund A. Gann's Peace Rules ran off after exercise rider Marco Ramirez came out of the stirrups and then turned in a bullet workout at Hollywood Park on Monday.
Edmund Gann's multi-millionaire You has been retired and will be entered in the 2004 Keeneland January sale, according to trainer Bobby Frankel.
Bobby Frankel said Tuesday that Ruffian Handicap (gr. I) winner Wild Spirit will not run in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), and will be given time off to point for next year's campaign. Frankel worked Peace Rules, Aldebaran, and Midas Eyes at Hollywood Park.
Favored Betty's Wish, kept wide and out of trouble, gave jockey John Velazquez and most of the fans in the Columbus Day crowd of 7,186 the response they wanted Monday afternoon and drew off to win the $110,300 Pebbles Handicap (gr. IIIT) for 3-year fillies at nine furlongs on the "good" inner turf course.
Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf (gr. IT) candidates Heat Haze and Tates Creek were both on the Hollywood Park worktab Sunday morning, logging half-miles in :47 2/5 and :48, respectively.
Andover Lady didn't fire her best shot when a well-beaten sixth behind Indy Five Hundred in the Garden City Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IT), but trainer John Kimmel may have found a good spot for her to rebound in Monday's $100,000-added Pebbles Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park.
Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro, who hasn't started since his second-place finish in the Pacific Classic (gr. I), worked 7 furlongs in 1:25 at Hollywood Park Saturday, with jockey Jose Valdivia aboard.
Oussama Abou-Ghazale, owner of Wild Spirit, has informed trainer Bobby Frankel that he is leaning toward running the Chilean-bred 4-year-old filly in the Breeders' Cup Distaff - Presented by Nextel (gr. I), Frankel said Tuesday.
Bobby Frankel and Jerry Bailey each established new North American single season records over the weekend and are on track to set other marks before the racing year is over, according to Equibase Company, the Thoroughbred industry's official database for racing information.
Juddmonte Farm's' Sightseek romped to her fourth consecutive grade I victory in Saturday's $750,000 Beldame for fillies and mares at Belmont Park, setting the stage for a possible showdown with Azeri in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) on Oct. 25 at Santa Anita.
Select Stable's Take Charge Lade is set to defend her crown in the $500,000 Overbrook Spinster (gr. I) at Keeneland Sunday.
Bobby Frankel loves the position he is in with Juddmonte Farms' multiple grade 1 winner Sightseek. After 2002 Horse of the Year Azeri had her 11-race win streak snapped last weekend in California, the case could be made that Sightseek is better.
Empire Maker, whose Belmont Stakes (gr. I) win ended the Triple Crown threat of Funny Cide, has been retired from racing and will stand for a fee of $100,000 live foal at Khalid Abdullah's Juddmonte Farms near Lexington.
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