Dedication, a French group I winner and U.S. graded winner, died after undergoing emergency colic surgery.
Favored Ocean Drive, ridden by John Velazquez, made a sweeping move around the leaders to seize the lead and draw away to win the $150,000 Noble Damsel Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park Saturday, her fourth grade III victory in 2004.
Following two straight runner-up finishes in allowances races, trainer Billy Turner will start Althea Richards' Finery in a stakes for the first time, Saturday's grade III, $150,000 Noble Damsel for fillies and mares at one mile on the turf at Belmont.
Juddmonte Farms' Etoile Montante, nipped by the narrowest of noses in her last start, could be the slight favorite when nine go to the post in Saturday's $250,000 Just a Game Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIT) for fillies and mares on the Belmont Park turf.
Trainer Jimmy Jerkens finally got a chance to try Multiple Choice on the turf Sunday afternoon, and the 6-year-old Mt. Livermore gelding rewarded his faith with a late-running neck victory in the $112,200 (gr. IIIT) Jaipur Handicap at seven furlongs on the Widener course.
The lone turf sprint stakes of the Belmont Park season will be run Sunday as a field of eight contest the seven furlong $100,000 Jaipur Handicap (gr. IIIT).
Kentucky Derby Day is always a big one at Aqueduct, where two stakes will be featured on Saturday, the $150,000 Withers Stakes (g. III) and the $100,000 Beaugay Handicap (gr. IIIT).
In her second American start, Etoile Montante exerted her class in the final furlong, holding off French-bred Dedication for a half-length victory Sunday in the $112,800 Las Cienegas Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares at Santa Anita Park.
Stormica, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly, seeks her third consecutive victory in the United States in the $100,000-added Las Cienegas Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the Santa Anita downhill turf course at about 6 1/2 furlongs.
Harmony Lodge goes for her fourth Gulfstream stakes victory -- and her fourth stakes score in a row -- when she tops a field of eight in Sunday's $100,000 Shirley Jones Handicap (gr. III) over seven furlongs at Gulfstream Park.
Roberta's Mango, a consistent California-bred daughter of Bold Badgett, takes on open competition in Monday's $100,000 Monrovia Handicap (gr. IIIT) down the hillside turf course, but trainer Julio Canani is optimistic she is up to the challenge.
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.
Dress To Thrill worked a half mile on the Hollywood Park turf course in :51 Sunday under Patrick Valenzuela in preparation for defense of her crown in the $500,000 Matriarch (gr. IT) for fillies and mares next Sunday.
Defending champion Dress To Thrill and Dedication will be flown from New York to California on Monday to compete in the $500,000 Matriarch for fillies and mares Nov. 30, trainer Christophe Clement confirmed Sunday.
Bobby Frankel will saddle another morning line favorite Saturday for Juddmonte Farm at Churchill Downs when homebred Heat Haze, unbeaten in two U.S. races, takes on a full field in the $100,000-added CITGO Distaff Turf Mile (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares.
Criquette Head-Maarek runners finished one-two in the Group I Prix de la Foret at Longchamp on Sunday afternoon, with Dedication sporting her mother's colors, beating Medecis by a neck.
Keeneland dedicated a new, 10,000 square-foot Thoroughbred history library at a Friday morning ceremony attended by about 75 people. The library will be open to the public July 15.
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