Oaklawn Park racing secretary Pat Pope predicted that claiming activity would be "very robust" during the 2015 meeting that began Jan. 15. So far, Pope is right.
In a race full of returning runners, Carve proved best to take the $100,000 Fifth Season Stakes Jan. 16 at Oaklawn Park.
Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider's Departing and Michael Langford's Carve, both based at Churchill Downs, are among six entered in the $125,000 Homecoming Classic at 1 1/8 miles Sept. 27 at the Kentucky racetrack.
Carve, riding a three-race winning streak, is the main danger in the $100,000 Ack Ack Handicap Sept. 6 at Churchill Downs. The one-turn mile race for older horses drew only five runners.
Carve made his sixth start of the year Aug. 2 and came away with his fourth victory of 2014 in the $200,000 West Virginia Governor's Stakes at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort.
Michael Langford's Carve, third in the grade II Oaklawn Handicap in April, worked out a nice trip to win the $300,000 Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Handicap (gr. II) at Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino the evening of June 28.
Southwest Stakes (gr. III) winner Tapiture got back to serious work the morning of March 2 at Oaklawn Park as he prepares to make his next stop along the Triple Crown trail in the $600,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. II).
Runner-up in her previous four starts -- the last three in graded stakes company -- Gary and Mary West's Keep the Peace looks to finally break through when facing seven fillies and mares in the $150,000 Endine Stakes (gr. III) Sept. 12 at Delaware Park. The 4-year-old Touch Gold filly was installed as the 2-1 morning-line favorite.
Delaware Park is preparing for an influx of more horses as about a half-dozen new trainers transfer their strings to the Stanton-oval.
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