Separated by just a nose in the recent Hall of Fame Stakes (gr. IIT), Interactif and Grand Rapport will meet again in the $250,000 Kent Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Delaware Park Sept. 25.
Eightyfiveinafifty will return against six rivals in the $200,000 Bay Shore Stakes (gr. III) April 3 at Aqueduct.
Trainer Steve Asmussen now believes Haynesfield is ready for another try against graded company, and has entered him in the $100,000-added Discovery Handicap (gr. III) for 3-year-olds going nine furlongs at Aqueduct. A field of six was drawn for the program feature.
Jockey Ramon Dominguez and trainer Gary Contessa continued to dominate the competition in New York. Dominguez ran away with the jockey title for the 64-day spring/summer meet at Belmont Park and Contessa edged Christophe Clement for the training title.
For the sixth time in the last seven seasons, the New York Thoroughbred Breeders champions for 2008 included two or more grade I winners for the year.
The New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (NYTHA) announced the results of its election of owner and trainer directors to its Board Dec. 5. Richard A. Violette, Jr., president, ran unopposed and was re-elected president of NYTHA.
Last year, Miss Macy Sue entered the $150,000 Honorable Miss (gr. II) off a 2 1/2-length victory in the Saylorville on her home track at Prairie Meadows. She proceeded to finish a well-beaten fourth after being sent off as the favorite.
Looky Yonder took down Dream Rush in the May 25 Vagrancy Handicap (gr. II), but the 4-year-old daughter of Johannesburg will have to deal with a whole new set of tough customers in the $150,000 First Flight Handicap (gr. II) July 4 at Belmont, including Rite Moment, who has been nearly flawless this season.
Shadwell Stable's Lucky Island, an Argentine-bred colt that has won three straight, including the May 10 Bold Ruler Handicap (gr. III), will face the stiffest competition of his short career July 4 in the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park.
Mission Approved wired 11 rivals in taking the $153,624 Singspiel Stakes (Can-III) on the Woodbine turf course on Queen's Plate Day June 22.
Trainer Gary Contessa, fresh off a win in the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II) on Friday, started the stakes program at Pimlico Saturday with a victory in the Maryland Sprint Handicap (gr. III). But, under very different circumstances.
Just as she did in her previous start, Sweet Vendetta took advantage of the off-track conditions, roaring through the muddy stretch at Pimlico Race Course to record a 1 1/2-length victory in the $200,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II) May 16.
The timing was perfect once again for Rite Moment, who won Aqueduct's $158,100 Bed o' Roses Handicap (gr.II) for her third consecutive stakes victory April 19.
If Gold Mark Farm's Elusive Lady can continue the forward progress she demonstrated with a runner-up effort in the March 15 Florida Oaks (gr. III), the $150,000 Comely Stakes (gr. II) at Aqueduct should be all hers April 12.
Kiaran McLaughlin will certainly have the odds in his favor March 29, as the veteran trainer will saddle three of the five entrants in the $100,000 Next Move Handicap (gr. III), a 1 1/8-mile dirt test for fillies and mares at Aqueduct.
Rite Moment benefited from a clean start in Aqueduct's $150,000 Distaff Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) March 22, wrapping up her fourth win from five starts over the inner track.
Jockey Ramon Dominguez set a single-season record for wins on Aqueduct's inner track when he rode Winning Move Stable's Oedipus O'Neal to victory for trainer Gary Contessa in the fourth race on Aqueduct's March 15 card.
Contessa's entries are True Intentions and Ready for Fortune, who will be coupled for owner Dennis Narlinger, and Dill Or No Dill, who won a six-furlong event at Aqueduct in her sophomore debut.
Trainer Bruce Levine saddled four winners at Aqueduct on Feb. 29. It was the first four-win day for a trainer in New York in nearly a year.
A release from the New York Racing Association highlighted strong growth in key areas with the on-track handle increasing, but all-sources wagers and average starters per race reflected a slight dip when the organization reported its final 2007 figures Jan. 18.
Dill Or No Dill left no doubts as to who was best in the $81,475 Ruthless Stakes by winning the six-furlong race for 3-year-old fillies by 5 1/2 lengths at Aqueduct Jan. 6.
Jockey Joe Bravo was hospitalized with a broken left collarbone following a spill at Belmont Park, when his mount broke down in the upper stretch during the third race on the New York track's opening day card.
- By Claire Novak
Members of the New York Racing Association's gate crew will meet Thursday with jockeys at Saratoga Race Course to discuss issues caused by miscommunication before the start of several recent races at the New York oval, NYRA CEO Charlie Hayward said.
It's time to step up. The June retirement of Invasor, the defending Horse of the Year and 2006 Whitney Handicap (gr. I) winner, has left a giant void at the top of the handicap division.
Any number of horses -- Lava Man, Street Sense, Rags to Riches, Papi Chullo, Sun King, Any Given Saturday, and Curlin -- could fill the void left by the recent departures of some of racing's biggest stars.
- By Claire Novak
Trainer Gary Contessa has been fined $1,000 and suspended seven days for the finding of the drug Phenylbutazone in post race samples taken from his starter Sheer Silk.
New York-breds thunder into the spotlight Sunday at Belmont Park with another renewal of the New York Stallion Stakes' Spectacular Bid and Cupecoy's Joy Divisions, and trainer Gary Contessa will take a shot at winning both races.
Woodlander put the final touch on a successful Aqueduct season for leading owner Winning Move Stable Sunday when the 5-year-old edged Golden Commander by a neck in capturing the $114,100 Fort Marcy Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the grass at 1 1/16 miles.
Gary Contessa added to his already huge lead in Aqueduct's trainer standings Friday afternoon, saddling four winners from seven starters.
The champion filly Smuggler made no impact in her first start in nine months when Magnolia Jackson dug in to defeat Grecian Lover by a neck in the $155,400 Bed o' Roses Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Aqueduct Saturday.
No Sleep, a winner of three straight races on the Aqueduct inner dirt course this winter, is part of a small field of five entered for Sunday's Next Move Handicap (gr. III) for fillies and mares at 1 1/8 miles.
Jockey Norberto Arroyo Jr. won the first four races on Sunday's New Year's Day card, the first day of Aqueduct's winter meet.
Trainer Gary Contessa sends out Sleeping in Sunday's $100,000-added Valley Stream at Aqueduct expecting his 2-year-old filly to bounce back from her last-place finish in Belmont Park's Astarita (gr. III) last month.
The New York Breeders' Sales Co.'s inaugural premier yearling sale ventures into new territory as it begins its two-day run Thursday night in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Hoping to catch yearling buyers that are in town, the NYBSC sale is sandwiched between Fasig-Tipton's select yearling sale that ends Wednesday evening and their New York-bred preferred sale that goes for two evenings beginning Sunday.
The New York Racing Association is "100 percent committed" to race day security barns, but has taken immediate action to address concerns expressed by horsemen at Saratoga Race Course, NYRA president Charles E. Hayward said July 29.
The New York Racing Association announced Thursday that it will increase purses for claiming races beginning June 18.
Sackatoga Stable's Eclipse-and-Classic-winning Funny Cide, whose 2004 graded victories included the Jockey Club Gold Cup (gr. I), was again named New York-bred horse of the year at the 25th annual New York Thoroughbred Breeders' awards banquet .
Entertainer and active Thoroughbred breeder David Cassidy loves his chances and will take a gamble with his Mayan King in Saturday's Lane's End Stakes (gr. II).
- By Dan Lauletta
Testing for the practice known as milkshaking begins in New York today (Feb. 16). The testing, which has come together quickly, has been lauded throughout the backside, but at least one trainer thinks the New York Racing Association should not have made the information public.
Gary Contessa won four consecutive races at Aqueduct on Friday to shoot into the top position in the trainer standings.
Grey Comet, a multiple stakes-winning homebred of Star Track Farms who was to attempt a sweep of the New York Stallion Series Sunday, was euthanized Wednesday afternoon in New Jersey.
- By Dan Lauletta
Aqueduct-based trainer Gary Contessa is awaiting his fate on a slew of ephedra positives that have sidetracked his operation.
Lorenzo Lezcano, an apprentice rider from Panama, topped Aqueduct's winter meet standings with 70 victories.
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