Trainer Bob Durso said he will start his undefeated Frisky Spider in either the Hutcheson or the Fountain of Youth, while Nick Zito is considering those races and allowances for Birdstone, Eurosilver, and The Cliff's Edge.
Remsen (gr. II) and Nashua Stakes (gr. III) winner Read the Footnotes, progressing toward the $250,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) Feb. 14, continues to post quick workouts for trainer Richard Violette.
The American Graded Stakes Committee of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association released Tuesday its listing of U.S. graded stakes for 2004, the results of its annual grading session conducted Nov. 24 in Lexington, Ky. The committee reviewed 759 unrestricted U.S. stakes races with a purse of at least $75,000, and assigned graded status to 480 of them, seven less than were graded in 2003.
Senor Swinger worked five furlongs in 1:01 4/5 on Monday and is on target for the Florida Derby...Offlee Wild suffering from a bacterial infection...Whywhywhy slated for Swale Stakes.
Nine 3-year-olds were entered for Saturday's $200,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I), Gulfstream Park's traditional send off on the road to the Triple Crown.
Hall of Fame trainer Allen Jerkens said he won't try Spite the Devil in Saturday's Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I).
Overbrook Farm's Ozzie Cat and Robert and Beverly Lewis' Scrimshaw made the trip from California and both arrived safely and are bedded down with the other horses in Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas‚ barn at Gulfstream Park.
Offlee Wild completed preparations for Saturday's Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I) with a lightning-quick five-furlong drill in :57.40 on a fast Gulfstream Park main track Wednesday.
Undefeated Indy Dancer, who has won both his career starts, will make his stakes debut in Sunday's Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds instead of the Fountain of Youth, trainer Todd Pletcher said.
Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey's Ten Cents A Shine worked Monday morning in preparation for Saturday's $200,000, grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park in Florida.
Trust N Luck, one of the leading candidates for the Feb. 15 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I), worked between races at Gulfstream on Wednesday.
Whywhywhy, 10th as the 5-2 favorite in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), had his first breeze Friday morning at Santa Anita since that Oct. 26 race at Arlington Park.
Daniel Borislow's Toccet, a contender for an Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old male of 2002, will make his 3-year-old debut in Gulfstream Park's Fountain of Youth (gr. I) on Feb. 15.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association has unveiled an expanded, nine-show "CITGO Racing to the Kentucky Derby" series for 2003.
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick -- With racing broadcasts taking a backseat to other sports on ESPN, producers should be prepared for an altered time period.
Each week, we will discuss the horses running in 3-year-old stakes who we feel will give you a run for your money at a good price, and some who might be worth watching in the weeks to come.
The blurry Kentucky Derby picture should begin clearing up Saturday, as a number of Triple Crown hopefuls meet to determine who makes that all-important leap forward. The grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes, which drew a field of eight, is split right down the middle, with four stakes winners facing off against four up-and-coming stars. And in supporting allowance races, two promising colts lock horns in a prep for the Florida Derby, and a former Coolmore colt makes his U.S. debut.
The "Citgo Racing to the Kentucky Derby," series of nine shows on the ESPN networks kicks off Saturday with the grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes from Gulfstream Park. The 1 1/16-mile Fountain of Youth will be shown on tape delay on ESPN from 6-6:30 p.m. (ET).
From Gulfstream Park:
Kinsman Stable's Blue Burner breezed three furlongs in :38 at Payson Park Feb. 12 in a final blowout for Saturday's grade 1 Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park.
Harlan's Holiday turned in another sharp work for Saturday's grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes, drilling a half in :47 1/5 Wednesday with jockey Tony D'Amico aboard. In other Fountain of Youth developments, Elliott Walden has decided run Speed Hunter, and Shug McGaughey will run only Maybry's Boy, who worked a half Wednesday in :48 3/5.
Trainer Elliott Walden will run Frank L. Mansell's Speed Hunter in Saturday's grade 1 Fountain of Youth, after being undecided earlier this week. What made him decide?
Trainer Ken McPeek had Harlan's Holiday on the track for a half-mile workout Feb. 12 and was more than pleased with the stakes-winning juvenile colt's move. Harlan's Holiday was ridden by jockey Tony D'Amico and was clocked in :47 2/5 handily. He runs Saturday in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I).
With jockey Edgar Prado aboard, Graham Motion-trained Grey Beard worked five furlongs Monday in 1:02 4/5 over a Gulfstream Park track labeled "good."
Several of the top-name 3-year-olds worked over the Gulfstream track Saturday morning, headed by Remsen Stakes winner Saarland, whose five-furlong breeze in 1:02 from the gate may have earned him a berth in next Saturday's Fountain of Youth Stakes.
With the Gulfstream surface doing a Jekyll & Hyde transformation, Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up Repent blazed 5 furlongs Wednesday in :58 flat, working in company with stablemate Take Charge Lady. The Kentucky Jockey Club winner galloped out 6 furlongs in 1:11 4/5.
Stephentown, an impressive allowance winner on Jan. 9, breezed a half-mile in :52 Monday in preparation for the $200,000 Fountain of Youth (gr. II) on Feb. 16.
Kentucky Derby winning trainer Nick Zito is enthusiastic about 3-year-old High Star's future, but Zito says his plan is to go slow with the colt.
Holy Bull winner Booklet, breezed a sharp 5 furlongs in 1:00 3/5 Friday at Gulfstream Park in preparation for the Feb. 16 Fountain of Youth Stakes. The smallish son of Notebook, who was purchased by John and Debby Oxley prior to the Holy Bull, has won five of his six career starts.
Booklet and Harlan's Holiday, the respective first and second place finishers in Saturday's Holy Bull Stakes, are expected to meet again Feb. 16 in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I), the next step on the road to the Florida Derby (gr. I).
Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) winner Repent breezed a half-mile in :50 at Gulfstream Park on Saturday under regular rider Tony D'Amico.
Last year, the Fountain of Youth Stakes, despite being won convincingly by High Yield, was upstaged by an allowance race, won by a powerful, classy-looking colt named Fusaichi Pegasus. This year, the Fountain of Youth Stakes, despite being won convincingly by Songandaprayer, was upstaged by an allowance race, won by a powerful, classy-looking colt named Hero's Tribute. Also impressive this weekend was the professional-like performance of Dollar Bill, who did everything the right way in winning Sunday's Risen Star Stakes in his 3-year-old debut.
One of the most intriguing Fountain of Youth Stakes in memory is set for this Saturday, as 11 top-class horses from all over the country converge on Gulfstream Park for the first major 3-year-old prep of the season. Favoritism will be up for grabs in this competitive 1 1/16-mile event, as a case can be made for several of the participants.
Traffic will increase on the road to Gulfstream Park's $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) next week as a field of 10, including some West Coast invaders, assembles for the grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes. The 1 1/16-mile Fountain on Saturday, Feb. 17, serves as the final major prep for the 50th anniversary running of the Florida Derby and the 3-year-old classics beyond.
Trainer John Ward, Jr. had his stakes-placed 3-year-old colt Holiday Thunder out for a six furlong trial on Friday. The son of Thunder Gulch was clocked in 1:14 4/5 and Ward was satisfied enough to say his next start would be in the $200,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on Feb. 17. "It was a good useful work and he finished up well," Ward said. "Mike Smith rode him this morning and he'll ride him for me in the Fountain of Youth Stakes. That's his next start."
Windsor Castle, purchased by a Dogwood Stable partnership after winning the grade II Remsen Stakes last year, has been dealt a setback that will cause him to miss the Feb. 17 Fountain of Youth Stakes. Dogwood president Cot Campbell said Windsor Castle developed a fever several days after a Jan. 6 workout. "It's nothing serious and he's normal now, but it's thrown a monkey wrench into (trainer) Frank Alexander's schedule for him," Campbell said.
After Saturday's seven-furlong Hutcheson Stakes, just one more stakes preview will remain on the Gulfstream Park schedule for the March 10 Florida Derby. Likely to await the $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) are the major 3-year-olds in Florida – Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) winner Macho Uno, and Champagne Stakes (gr. I) winner A P Valentine. Another pointing directly to the mile and an eighth Florida Derby is Buckle Down Ben, winner of the Laurel Futurity (gr. III) last season and second in the Holy Bull.
The grade 1 Fountain of Youth, to be run February 17 as the last major prep for the $1 million Florida Derby March 10, is the next scheduled stop on the agenda for grade 3 Holy Bull winner Radical Riley. Runner-up Bukcle Down Ben could also try the Fountain of Youth or may go directly into the Florida Derby off Saturay's effort.
Macho Uno, winner of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile in his last start of 2000, arrived safely at Gulfstream on Saturday. The newly turned 3-year-old was shipped by van from Frank Stronach's Adena Springs South Farm in Ocala, and is bedded down with trainer Joe Orseno's stable.
Trainer Frank Alexander worked Remsen Stakes (gr. II) winner Windsor Castle on Saturday at Gulfstream in preparation for the $200,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) over 1 1/16 miles here Feb. 17. With Robbie Davis in the saddle, Windsor Castle was timed in 1:13 4/5 for six furlongs (handily) and got the half-mile in :48 4/5.
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