It was a crowded scene at the April 10 post-position draw for the $750,000 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I), as the connections crossed their fingers and hoped for good post positions.
Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) contenders Rydilluc, Uncaptured, Undrafted, and Dewey Square all turned in pre-race works April 5 at Keeneland. Also working were Dynamic Sky at Churchill and Fear the Kitten at Trackside.
John Oxley's grade I winner Spring in the Air will face a full field of 13 rivals in the $500,000 Central Bank Ashland (gr. I) for 3-year-old fillies going 1 1/16 miles on the main track at Keeneland April 6.
Hardway Stables' Speak Logistics, third behind subsequent Besilu Stables Florida Derby (gr. I) winner Orb in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II), heads a field of eight for the Calder Derby.
John Oxley's Star Contender is highweighted at 123 pounds in a field of 11 for the $100,000 Transylvania Stakes (gr. IIIT), but SamSon Farms' Up With the Birds has beaten him and will likely be favored at Keeneland April 5.
A full field of 12 is expected when Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II) winner Uncaptured makes his 2013 debut March 23 in the $550,000 Horseshoe Cincinnati Casino Stakes (gr. III) at Turfway Park.
Jockey Gary Boulanger, away from the races for nearly nine years, rides John Oxley's Conquestor to victory in the OBS Sprint Stakes during the OBS Day of Champions. Spring Venture returns a winner in the filly division.
Trainer Mark Casse is looking for a big effort against the undefeated Verrazano.
Trainer Mark Casse will be busy saddling horses at Ocala Breeders' Sales Company stakes races Monday, March 11 where he has entered six horses, including at least one in each of the day's four stakes races.
Falling Sky, winner of the Feb. 2 Sam F. Davis Stakes (gr. III) at Tampa Bay Downs, was scratched from the Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth (gr. II) the morning of the race, as was maiden winner Sky Captain.
The Breeders' Cup Board discussed the scheduled prohibition of race-day furosemide at this year's Breeders' Cup World Championships during a Feb. 22 meeting at Gulfstream Park, but took no action.
Grade I winners, at ages 8 and 9, respectively, face talented field at Gulfstream.
The sky was the limit Feb. 2 at Tampa Bay Downs, with Falling Sky and Dynamic Sky finishing 1-2 in the $202,500 Sam F. Davis Stakes (gr. III). Falling Sky, a 7-1 upsetter, survived an objection to get the job done.
My Name is Michael and Dynamic Sky square off in 1 1/16-mile test at Tampa Bay Downs
The inaugural running of the $400,000 Houston Ladies Classic -- -the richest race run at Sam Houston Race Park since it opened in 1994 -- -will feature round three for rivals Joyful Victory and Brushed by a Star.
Kauai Katie has proven her talent among the best in North America, while Fusaichiswonderful is undefeated with four graded stakes victories earned in Puerto Rico. Pletcher saddles both at Gulfstream Jan. 26.
Dynamic Sky recovered from a tough trip to win the $100,000 Pasco Stakes over stablemate Sky Commander Jan. 12 at Tampa Bay Downs, giving owner John Oxley and trainer Mark Casse consecutive scores in the race.
Csaba is the best he's ever been, and if he sails through the Hal's Hope Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park Jan. 13, he'll punch his ticket to his first grade I stakes attempt in the $500,000 Donn Handicap on Feb. 9.
Kauai Katie is the biggest name of a loaded stakes day at Gulfstream Park Jan. 1. She'll contest the $100,000 Old Hat Stakes (gr. III) while sophomore males duke it out in the Gulfstream Park Derby and Spectacular Bid.
There were familiar names on top of the leader board at the end of the 13-race season-ending card at Woodbine Dec. 16, with Mark Casse taking the training title and Luis Contreras on top of the jockey standings.
The two favorites in Nov. 24 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II) ran to their odds, engaging in a thrilling stretch duel at Churchill Downs before Uncaptured prevailed by a head over Frac Daddy.
Hawthorne Gold Cup (gr. II) winner Pool Play was scratched from the Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I) the morning of the race, but not due to tendon issues similar to those he has battled in the past.
Just under four weeks after rolling to victory in the Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs, Uncaptured will target more success at the Louisville track Nov. 24 in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II).
Bill Farish Jr.'s Pool Play will be pointed toward the Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I) Nov. 23 at Churchill Downs, but the 7-year-old might not be the only Clark starter for trainer Mark Casse.
Trainers Todd Pletcher and Mark Casse took issue with the Breeders' Cup decision banning the anti-bleeding medication furosemide in this year's five juvenile races during the World Thoroughbred Championships.
Mark Casse got Dynamic Sky for less than he expected and the colt has accomplished more than the trainer ever thought he would during his 2-year-old racing season.
Around the Mark Casse barn, Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile Filly (gr. I) candidate Spring in the Air is known as the "Little Zenyatta" for her dressage-like prancing.
- By Ron Mitchell
Trainer Mark Casse talks about Classic contender Pool Play and his other Breeders' Cup horses. Watch Video
Steve looks at Classic horses, and shares some Breeders' Cup photos. read blog
The connections of Pool Play figured last year the horse wouldn't race again because of a tendon injury, but given time and sharp training by Mark Casse, the horse has made it to the Breeders' Cup Classic.
There is plenty of international flavor in this year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. IT) with Watsdachances, Spring Venture, and Sky Lantern.
Uncaptured overcame some traffic problems to register a convincing 5 1/2-length win in the $114,800 Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) Oct. 28 at Churchill Downs for his fifth win in six tries this year.
Star Contender, confidently ridden by Patrick Husbands, took command near the top of the lane and cruised home a 3 1/4-length winner in the $250,400 Cup and Saucer Stakes.
Favorite Delegation ran like a 6-5 choice should, taking the Durham Cup field wire-to-window to win the grade III Polytrack race over nine furlongs by 1 1/4 lengths over defending champ City Wolf.
Pool Play won for the first time since suffering a tendon tear last year, and picked a good race to do it. The 7-year-old son of Silver Deputy took the $500,000 Hawthorne Gold Cup (gr. II) at Hawthorne Oct. 6.
Spring Venture, trained by Mark Casse and ridden by Patrick Husbands, stayed unbeaten while prevailing under a hand ride Oct. 6 at Woodbine in the featured $205,361 Mazarine Stakes (Can-III).
John Oxley's Spring in the Air closed with a huge run from mid-pack to win the $400,000 Darley Alcibiades (gr. I) by a length at Keeneland Oct. 5, punching her ticket to the Breeders' Cup.
Undefeated in four starts at Woodbine this year including three stakes scores, Uncaptured is a clear standout against six juvenile opponents for the $200,000 Grey Stakes (Can-III) at the Toronto track Oct. 7.
Recent Natalma Stakes (Can-IIT) winner Spring Venture tries Polytrack for the first time in the $200,000 Mazarine Stakes (Can-III) for 2-year-old fillies Oct. 6 at Woodbine.
Rebounding from a seventh-place showing in the Travers Stakes (gr. I), favored Stealcase registered his first stakes victory with a late-running effort in the $158,934 Ontario Derby (Can-III) Sept. 16 at Woodbine.
Trainer Mark Casse won the $250,000 Natalma Stakes (gr. IIT) for the fourth time in the past seven years when his fillies Spring Venture and Spring in the Air ran first and second in the one-mile turf event at Woodbine.
Trainer Mark Casse entered Prospective and Stealcase in the $150,000 Ontario Derby at Woodbine Sept. 16, but only expects one to run. Casse will also send out Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Gary Barber's Patrioticandproud.
The starting gate for the $250,000 Natalma Stakes (Can-IIT) on the Woodbine lawn Sept. 15 will be packed with promising 2-year-old fillies, 14 in all, with an automatic Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf berth at stake.
Uncaptured remained unbeaten in four starts as a 2-year-old with a smart 3 1/4-length victory over three opponents in the $172,565 Swynford Stakes Sept. 9 at Woodbine.
Sparked by a bidding war, a chestnut colt by English Channel sold for $275,000 to top the second session of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario) selected yearling sale.
Dwyer Stakes winner Teeth of the Dog, looking to rebound from a fourth in the Jim Dandy, heads a field of nine sophomores including Prospective and My Adonis in the $350,000 Smarty Jones Stakes Sept. 3 at Parx.
Roxy Gap, a three-time graded stakes winner at Woodbine this season, is the 124-pound high weight in a field of five entered for the $150,000 Seaway Stakes (Can-III) Sept. 1 at the Toronto track.
A colt by Kitten's Joy topped the first open session of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s August Yearling Sale in Central Florida on Aug. 22, selling to Al Pike, agent, for $110,000.
Leading Woodbine trainer Mark Casse carries a solid hand in the $150,000 Ontario Colleen Stakes (Can-IIIT) with three entrants for owner John C. Oxley in the one-mile turf event for 3-year-old fillies Aug. 25.
Sheikh Mohammed and other top buyers are ready to shop at the yearling auction in upstate New York.
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