Gulfstream Park's opening weekend, from Friday, January 3, through Sunday, January 5, features five stakes, free grandstand admission, giveaways and rolled-back prices on selected food and drink favorites, weekend appearances by leading thoroughbred trainers, concerts, and more.
Though trainer John Kimmel thinks his Silver Squire will eventually compete at longer distances, he's keeping the son of Silver Ghost in a sprint race, Sunday's Huntington Stakes at Aqueduct.
There has been much discussion regarding the decision to change the 2002 Breeders' Cup Juvenile and Juvenile Filly distance to 1 1/8 miles instead of one mile, which was the original distance of the two juvenile races, first run at Hollywood Park.
Whywhywhy will be asked the question Sunday in the $200,000 Futurity (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
A strong field of seven fillies and mares will line up for Sunday's 49th running of the $250,000 Go for Wand (gr. I) over nine furlongs at Saratoga.
Trainer Mark Hennig said Gygistar has a slim chance of making the Jim Dandy on Aug. 4; trainer John Kimmel got off to a good start, winning the first and third races; and trainer John Ward said that multiple stakes winner Booklet may return to the races for the first time since the Preakness later in the meet.
Miss Linda and Forest Secrets, both grade 1 winners last year, make their seasonal debuts at Gulfstream Park Friday when they head a field of 12 fillies and mares in the $100,000 Sabin Handicap (gr. III) at 1 1/16-miles.
Pompeii, earning her first grade I score, defeated Beautiful Pleasure and six others in the 10-furlong Personal Ensign at Saratoga.
Chester and Mary Broman's Hook and Ladder led from start to finish and held off a game challenge from Trippi and Rollin With Nolan for an impressive victory in Friday's Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. II).
In the moments after Inexplicable's very explicable win in the Canadian Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) on Feb. 24, trainer Christophe Clement was once and for all going to explain his secret for getting optimum performances from horses returning from layoffs. "My secret with layoff runners," he began straight-faced, with a crowd of reporters moving in closer to hear his pearl of wisdom, "is to be stabled next to Bill Mott."
Intidab won the $200,000 A.G. Vanderbilt Handicap (gr. II) -- formerly the A Phenomenon Handicap -- by a head on the track at Saratoga Wednesday, but was disqualified and placed second due to a bumping incident in the stretch with Successful Appeal, leaving the latter as the winner.
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