Rachel Alexandra will steal all the headlines, but she won't be the only heavily-backed filly Steve Asmussen sends out in a grade I race this weekend at Saratoga. The nation's leading trainer also has Grace Stables' Hot Dixie Chick going in the $300,000 Spinaway (gr. I) on Sept. 6, and the daughter of Dixie Union figures to receive much of the attention at the windows.
Lawrence Carroll's Bold Start put away Semaphore Man approaching the sixteenth-pole and cruised to the wire 2 3/4 lengths in front for his biggest lifetime score in the $112,600 Aristides (gr. III) May 30 at Churchill Downs.
Trainer Ken McPeek posted his 1,000th career victory on May 25 when Lawrence Carroll's Old Man Buck won the eighth race at Churchill Downs under Calvin Borel.
Livin the Dream Racing's Dream Empress, winner of the Darley Alcibiades (gr. I) and runner-up in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), will make her 3-year-old debut in the $150,000 Herecomesthebride Stakes (gr. IIT) March 15 on the Gulfstream Park turf. But trainer Ken McPeek said the Bernstein filly is not a candidate for the May 1 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
Giant Oak's breeze on March 7, clocked in 1:00.80 for five furlongs, was a routine move in advance of Fair Grounds' $600,000 Louisiana Derby (gr. II) on March 14. However, just past the wire, trainer Chris Block's big horse bobbled briefly, giving the Illinois-based conditioner some moments of concern until he was able to check out his horse back at the barn.
Silver Wing Stable's Free Country, undefeated in two starts including an impressive nine-furlong allowance win at Gulfstream Park last month, makes his highly-anticipated stakes debut in the $225,000 Sam F. Davis Stakes (gr. III) Feb. 14 at Tampa Bay Downs.
After spending 2008 in Big Brown's shadow, West Point Thoroughbreds' Macho Again is ready to step into the sun as one of the top choices in the $1 million OBS Sunshine Millions Classic at Gulfstream Park Jan. 24.
The trainer will seperate his three promising Kentucky Derby (gr. I) prospects. He is also hopeful that a fourth will soon make his mark on the Triple Crown trail.
Kenny McPeek on his BC Juvenile Fillies contender Dream Empress
Kelly Colliver's Dream Express took over at the top of the lane and powered to a dominating 4 1/4-length score in the $500,000 Darley Alcibiades (gr. I) Oct. 3 on the Keneland Polytrack. The 2-year-old Bernstein filly earned her first graded stakes win while notching a berth in the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) later this month at Santa Anita.
Racecar Rhapsody, a 3-year-old son of Tale of the Cat who ran fourth to Big Brown in the Preakness (gr. I), was scratched from the seventh race at Churchill Downs June 18 after the colt was purchased by new owners.
Recapturetheglory, fifth in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), has had his Preakness Stakes (gr. I) plans derailed by a fever. The son of Cherokee Run is officially out, according to co-owner Ronnie Lamarque, who confirmed the news at 2 p.m. EDT May 10.
Six horses expected to race in the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Monmouth Park received their final works at Keeneland Oct. 20.
New York- based trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, Gary Contessa and John Kimmel are the latest horsemen to sign up for the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation's Pony-Up Program, a new TRF fundraising initiative designed to spread the financial responsibilities of caring for retired racehorses across the training community, while taxing horsemen only when they have reaped the benefits of a win.
It was business as usual at Churchill Downs when Cat Quatorze, the first horse saddled by new trainer Helen Pitts, who has replaced her former boss Ken McPeek, won Friday.
Trainer Elliott Walden will hang up his training cap at the end of the current Churchill Downs meet to become vice president in charge of racing and bloodstock services for Bill Casner and Kenny Troutt's WinStar Farm.
Sweet Talker, who clearly loves the turf course at Churchill Downs, should be the solid favorite Saturday in the Regret Stakes (gr. IIIT).
The top three finishers from last year's Elkhorn Stakes (gr. IIIT) are back to renew their rivalry Friday when the $200,000 race is contested at Keeneland on closing day.
Trainer Ken McPeek, who conditioned grade I winners Harlan's Holiday, Take Charge Lady, Sarava, and Hard Buck during his 20-year career, is leaving the training game effective July 1 to become a bloodstock agent and advisor.
The connections of two U. S. turf specialists said Thursday they plan to embark on race campaigns this year that will include France's Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp Oct. 2.
It looks like Prince Arch is headed to Dubai for the $2 million Sheema Classic (UAE-I) after the 4-year-old captured the $230,000 Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup (gr. IT) on the turf Sunday in the colt's 2005 debut.
A couple of classy older horses, Denon and Rochester, head the field for the mile-and-a-half $150,000 Sycamore Breeders' Cup (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland Saturday.
Favored Prince Arch overcame a bump with Good Reward in upper stretch to rally for a resolute victory by a head over Mustanfar in the closing-day $108,200 Saranac Handicap (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds Monday at Saratoga Race Course.
Trainer Ken McPeek hopes to close the 136th Saratoga Race Course meet on a winning note when he ships Prince Arch from Kentucky for the $100,000-added Saranac Handicap (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds at 1 3/16-mile on the turf.
Thoroughbred Charities of America raised $65,000 at its inaugural golf tournament Aug. 17 at the Saratoga National Golf Club in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Proceeds will benefit Thoroughbred rescue, rehabilitation, and research throughout the nation.
Trainer Ken McPeek and jockey Brice Blanc teamed for a second graded stakes win on a yielding Churchill Downs turf course Saturday when Sister Star surprised favored Western Ransom by 3 3/4 lengths in the $221,800 Regret (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-old fillies.
Prince Arch, thanks to a patient ride by Brice Blanc, ended heavily favored Kitten's Joy five-race winning streak in the final strides of the $226,200 Jefferson Cup (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds on the turf at Churchill Downs.
Brazilian-bred Hard Buck rallied on the outside to get up in the final two strides, defeating favored Balto Star by a head in the $190,000 Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IT) on the turf Sunday.
Paper Man and Hard Buck prepare for Palm Beach Stakes, Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup Handicap.
Ken McPeek could have starters in the Canadian Turf and the Suwanee River Handicaps. Allen Jerkens is pointing both Bowman's Band and Puzzlement toward the Donn.
The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association will hold a two-day conformation and pedigree clinic at Calder Race Course Feb. 1-2.
Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas, who has already saddled more winners of the $200,000-added Golden Rod Stakes (gr. II) than anyone at Churchill Downs, sends out the imposing duo of Be Gentle and Stellar Jayne in Saturday's 60th renewal of the race for 2-year-old fillies.
Lead Story, ridden by Calvin Borel, rallied along the inside on a sloppy Churchill Downs track to romp away in the $334,200 Falls City Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares Thursday by a widening 6 1/2 lengths.
Crafty Shaw's connections are weighing their options after the horse's recent Schaefer Mile win...Take Charge Lady could make her final start in the Nov. 27 Falls City.
Front-running Warleigh nearly pulled off a theft of Sunday's $172,800 River City Handicap (gr. IIIT) on a yielding Churchill Downs turf, but he could not hold off the relentless charge of upsetter Hard Buck in the final stages.
After flirting with the notion of running Take Charge Lady in Saturday's Churchill Downs Distaff (gr. II), trainer Ken McPeek is pointing the Select Stable runner toward a repeat effort in the Nov. 27 Falls City Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs.
Galloping Gal displayed her fondness for the grass Thursday at Keeneland, winning the $113,200 Jessamine County Stakes for 2-year-old fillies on the turf.
Stonecrest Farm's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) contender Perfect Drift, Select Stable's Distaff (gr. I) hope Take Charge Lady, and Team Valor's Juvenile (gr. I) hopeful Tiger Hunt each worked five furlongs in dense fog at Churchill Downs Saturday morning in their last training moves before they fly to California to compete in the Breeders' Cup at Oak Tree at Santa Anita Oct. 25.
Select Stable's Take Charge Lady came out of her impressive 10 ½ -length tally in Monday's Arlington Matron Handicap (gr. III) well and will leave Arlington Park Wednesday evening on her return trip to Churchill Downs, trainer Ken McPeek said.
A sloppy track added a little intrigue to Monday's $150,000 Arlington Matron Handicap (gr. III), but prohibitive favorite Take Charge Lady put an end to any issues on the turn for home, striding out in the home stretch for jockey Shane Sellers to win as she pleased.
Select Stable's Take Charge Lady, a multiple grade I stakes winner with career earnings in excess of $2 million, has been installed as the prohibitive 3-5 for Monday's 67th running of the $150,000 Arlington Matron Handicap (gr. III).
Select Stable's Take Charge Lady, one of the headline attractions in this year's older filly and mare division, is coming to Arlington Park as the starring individual in Monday's grade III Arlington Matron Handicap
Saratoga Notebook: McPeek Thinking Upset; Weight Could Factor; Tagg Rethinks Hopeful; Bond High on Solar Man
When Sarava rocked the Thoroughbred world by winning the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) last June, trainer Ken McPeek may have been the least surprised by the unexpected upset.
Saratoga Notebook: No Budging Tagg; Wild and Wicked in Travers; Sackatoga Breaks Maiden; Mud Delays Sky Mesa
Sackatoga Stable's Funny Cide was worked on by a chiropractor Thursday morning and his status for the Travers (gr.I) remains in question.
Uncharacteristically, trainer Kenny McPeek was a man of few words Wednesday as he talked about Ohio Derby (gr.II) Wild and Wicked's work over the Oklahoma training track.
Observations from those involved with the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky summer yearling sale.
Edward P. Evans' Summer Colony will attempt to become the fifth back-to-back winner of the $750,000 Delaware Handicap (gr. II) Sunday when she faces seven foes in the 66th renewal of the filly and mare classic at Delaware Park.
Juddmonte Farms' Sightseek, a filly who always fires, is the likely favorite in Saturday's $300,000 Ogden Phipps Handicap (gr. I) at Belmont Park, but she'll have to beat an extremely tough if compact field.
Saturday's 29th running of the $300,000-added Fleur De Lis Handicap (gr. II) lost one of its major stars when trainer Ken McPeek decided that Select Stable's Take Charge Lady would skip the race.
Select Stable's Take Charge Lady may have earned a spot in the starting gate for Saturday's $300,000-added Fleur De Lis Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs with a sharp five furlong work over the track on Monday.
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