Lava Man, a former claiming horse, became the first runner since Native Diver in 1967 to win back-to-back editions of the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) when he won a heart-pounding finish by a nose Saturday over the longest shot in the field, Ace Blue.
Trainer Doug O'Neill keeps throwing bigger challenges at the multi-dimensional Lava Man, but nothing seems to faze the 5-year-old California-bred gelding. Winner of both the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) and Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) in the last 11 months, Lava Man led gate to wire to register his first grade I win on the turf in the Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap at Hollywood Park.
Jockey Corey Nakatani rode four winners including Aragorn in the $321,000 Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) to reach the 3,000-win mark Monday at Hollywood Park.
Jockey Corey Nakatani earned his 2,999th career win Monday when he guided Ballygallon Stud's homebred Aragorn, the longest shot on the board, to victory in the $321,000 Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) on the Hollywood Park turf.
There wasn't much speed signed up for Saturday's $200,000 Santa Barbara Handicap (gr. IIT), and jockey Corey Nakatani took full advantage to drive Sharp Lisa to a crafty front-running victory by a nose over Eternal Melody at 10 furlongs on the Santa Anita lawn.
The turn-back in distance to seven furlongs did the trick for the slumping Sun King, who charged from seventh in the stretch to win Keeneland's $443,200 Commonwealth Breeders' Cup (gr. II) going away Saturday.
Making his first start for last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winning trainer John Shirreffs, overlooked A.P. Warrior came to life Saturday under jockey Corey Nakatani, turning back Point Determined late for a half-length victory in the $250,000 San Felipe (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Santa Anita.
California-bred Lava Man, ridden with extreme confidence by Corey Nakatani, shook loose of favored High Limit on the far turn and defeated upset-minded Magnum to win the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) in a spectacular effort in front of nearly 50,000 fans Saturday.
Agent Ron Anderson, who formerly represented Jerry Bailey, and West Coast jockey Garrett Gomez announced their decision to work together Saturday after Gomez parted ways with Jim Pegram.
Garrett Gomez and agent Jim Pegram have parted company, the agent revealed Friday morning.
The grade I winner Lava Man flashed his former brilliance with a sweeping 2 1/4-length victory in the $1 million Sunshine Millions Classic to conclude the rich program for California and Florida-bred horses at Santa Anita Park Saturday.
Turnbolt will attempt to successfully run farther than he ever has when the son of Deputy Minister starts in Saturday's grade II San Pasqual Handicap at 1 1/16 miles at Santa Anita.
With a stunning seven-wide move in early stretch, longshot Relaxed Gesture mowed down the field in Sunday's $2 million Pattison Canadian International (Can-I) on his way to a 4 1/2-length victory at Woodbine.
Moyglare Stud's Steel Light, sent off as the lukewarm 3-1 favorite, made his Woodbine debut a winning one, taking Sunday's $500,000 Nearctic Stakes (Can-II) on Pattison Canadian International Day at Woodbine.
Jockey Rene Douglas was in Florida Wednesday tending to personal matters, but before he left Santa Anita he was undecided on whether he would continue as a regular on the Southern California circuit.
Favored Fourty Niners Son, who has pounced on the American grass handicap division with passion this summer, scored his first graded stakes victory in Sunday's $250,000 Clement L. Hirsch Turf Championship (gr. IT) at Santa Anita's Oak Tree meeting.
Jockey Jose Valdivia, Jr. suffered a hairline fracture of his right tibia Sunday in a nasty spill during the first race at Del Mar. The accident resulted in a "no contest" decision by the track's stewards.
Del Mar stewards fined Corey Nakatani and Patrick Valenzuela $500 apiece Wednesday for fighting in the jockeys' room following a race Monday in which Rene Douglas drew a three-day suspension.
Southern California shipper Dream of Summer pulled away at the eighth pole to dominate her seven opponents in the $150,000 Gardenia Handicap (gr. III) for fillies and mares at rainy Ellis Park Saturday.
California-bred sprinter Unfurl the Flag won the first graded stakes race of his career Sunday when he dusted a large field in the $350,000 Triple Bend Handicap (gr. I) on Independence Day weekend at Hollywood Park.
Three jockeys have appealed their seven-day suspensions and $5,000 fines levied by the Churchill Downs stewards for wearing unapproved advertising in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and failing to comply with stewards' orders.
There seemed a strong likelihood of a speed duel in Saturday's $205,150 Milady Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park, but outsider Andujar never allowed it to happen, simply running the rest of the field into the ground.
Three jockeys who appear to have worn unapproved advertising during the May 7 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) are expected at a hearing before Churchill Downs stewards May 21 in Louisville.
Forest Grove, guided through an opening along the inside on the turn by jockey Corey Nakatani, held off the late charge of Areyoutalkintome to register his first graded stakes victory in the $150,000 Los Angeles Times Handicap (gr. III) at Hollywood Park Saturday.
Merv Griffin's versatile Cee's Irish, ridden by Corey Nakatani, pulled away from her rivals at the head of the stretch in winning the $259,000 WinStar Sunland Oaks Saturday in virtually gate-to-wire fashion.
Thor's Echo, who couldn't hold off Southern Africa when the two met the last time, turned the tables on his rival in the $500,000 WinStar Derby at Sunland Park Saturday.
Martin and Pam Wygod's homebred Sweet Catomine had to survive an objection, but she got the job done in Sunday's $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I) with an impressive finish.
Passed by Memorette in upper stretch, odds-on favorite Sharp Lisa refused to give in, coming back powerfully in the final sixteenth of a mile to tally a three-quarters of a length win in the $250,000 Las Virgenes (gr. I) for 3-year-old fillies at Santa Anita Saturday.
Jockey Corey Nakatani returned from a 30-day suspension in style Friday with a two-length victory aboard Courtly Jazz in the $54,400 allowance feature at Santa Anita Park.
Santa Anita's jockey colony becomes quite a bit tougher during the next 48 hours with the return of veterans Corey Nakatani and Alex Solis.
David Flores and Sweet Catomine, the very likely 2-year-old filly champion of 2004, are scheduled to join forces again Sunday when the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (g. I) winner makes her 3-year-old debut in the $100,000 Santa Ysabel Stakes (gr. III) at 1 1/16 miles.
Trainer Craig Dollase said Thursday that Corey Nakatani would ride Wilko in the Grade I Hollywood Futurity for 2-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on Dec. 18.
Trainer Todd Pletcher shipped to Southern California for his second Hollywood Turf Festival triumph in as many days when Dubleo registered his sixth win of 2004 in the $100,000 Generous Stakes (gr. IIIT) for 2-year-olds going a mile on the turf.
Corey Nakatani, who celebrated his 34th birthday Oct. 21, has been booked to ride in all eight Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championship races Oct. 30 at Lone Star Park.
Jockey Corey Nakatani is to serve a 30-day suspension from Dec. 26 through Feb. 3, 2005, the California Horse Racing Board has ruled.
Trainer Dan Hendricks, paralyzed from the waist down in a motorcycle accident July 7, won the $250,000 California Cup Classic when his 20-1 shot Cozy Guy gutted out a stretch-long duel over 25-1 Lava Man at Oak Tree Santa Anita Park.
Darley Stable's Balletto rallied late after ducking away from wavering leader Sis City near the eighth pole to win the $500,000 Frizette (gr. I) for 2-year-old fillies at Belmont Park.
Darley Stable's Balletto and Gary Zweling's Play with Fire face off again in Saturday's 57th running of the Frizette Stakes (gr. I) for 2-year-old fillies at Belmont.
Sweet Catomine emerged from the $200,000 Oak Leaf (gr. II) at Santa Anita's Oak Tree meet as a major contender for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) on Oct. 30 at Lone Star Park with a sweeping victory Saturday.
Lundy's Liabililty engaged in a spirited duel with heavy favorite Total Impact through most of Saturday's $480,000 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) before prevailing on the inside by a head at Santa Anita's Oak Tree meet.
Favored Dubleo, trained by Todd Pletcher, scored a front-running victory in the $277,750 Summer Stakes (Can-II) for 2-year-olds Sunday on the Woodbine turf.
The Diamond A Racing Corporation of Gerald Ford, led by Pacific Classic (gr. I) winner Pleasantly Perfect, came away the big winner among owners at the close of the 2004 Del Mar meeting on Sept. 8.
Declan's Moon edged favorite Roman Ruler by a neck Wednesday, winning the $250,000 Del Mar Futurity in stakes record time.
French-bred Blackdoun unleashed his powerful late run to nip Toasted and Laura's Lucky Boy by a neck in the $400,000 Del Mar Derby (gr. IIT) and remain undefeated in three United States starts for trainer Julio Canani.
Royce S. Jaime's Perfect Moon, who last summer won the Best Pal Stakes (gr. II) and then was third to Siphonizer in the Del Mar Futurity (gr. II), cruised to a decisive 4 1/2-length victory Friday night in the $79,550 El Cajon Stakes for 3-year-olds.
J. Paul Reddam's Elloluv, a leading 3-year-old filly in 2003 when she won the Ashland Stakes (gr. I), but winless in six subsequent starts in top company, returned to form Thursday with a solid victory in the featured $76,000 Piedra Foundation Handicap.
Jockey Corey Nakatani took at least one punch in a jockeys' room fracas after the first race Friday at Del Mar, then came back to register a knockout of his own with three victories in his final four rides.
Fog City Stable's heavily-favored Roman Ruler, in his second career start, galloped past his stablemate Actxecutive in mid-stretch on his way to an easy victory in the Best Pal (gr. II) for 2-year-olds at Del Mar Sunday.
Blackdoun, a colt who chased some good ones in France, won his second stakes race in as many tries at Del Mar this summer, taking the La Jolla Handicap (gr. IIT) for 3-year-olds Saturday.
Moyglare Stud Farm's Where We Left Off found another gear in the final sixteenth of a mile, surging past the comfortably leading Mrs. M for a one-length triumph in the $100,000 Matchmaker Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares on the Monmouth Park turf Sunday.
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