Fourteen of the United States' best older horses have departed on flights from Los Angeles and Florida for the world's richest racing meeting later this month, the Dubai Racing Club confirmed Saturday.
With Medaglia d'Oro's brilliant victory in the Donn Handicap (gr. I), it looks as if the next stop is Nad al Sheba Race Course and the juicy $6 million pot that awaits him in the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I). But this won't be the colt's first trip to the desert.
Sackatoga Stable's Funny Cide, who will start in the Donn Handicap (gr. I) Saturday at Gulfstream Park, schooled in the paddock before Friday's first race.
The first major showdown of the 2004 season takes place at Gulfstream Park Saturday as Funny Cide, last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner, meets Medaglia d'Oro, one of the best older horses in training, in the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at 1 1/8 miles.
The race for 2004's leading older horse gets underway with the Feb. 7 $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park. The Donn Handicap is expected to lure a field of six or seven of the top handicap horses in the nation, led by Sackatoga Stable's classic winning champion Funny Cide.
Pleasantly Perfect, Funny Cide, Congaree, Medaglia d'Oro, and some top Kentucky Derby (gr. I) candidates are among the U.S.-based horses who have been invited to compete in one of the seven stakes races at Nad al Sheba on March 27, Dubai World Cup Day, when more than $15,000,000 will be offered in purses.
The Juddmonte Farms juggernaut of owner/breeder Prince Khalid Abdullah and prominently represented by trainer Bobby Frankel and jockey Jerry Bailey is in position to add to its large collection of Eclipse Awards when the annual black-tie dinner is held Jan. 26 at the Westin Diplomat Resort and Spa in Hollywood, Fla.
Santa Anita opens its winter-spring meet on Dec. 26. The California track will offer 60 stakes races in the meet's 84 days of racing.
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel has cancelled plans to ship a pair of grade I winning stars, Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro and Juddmonte Farm's Sightseek, to Churchill Downs to compete in the $1.2 million "Big Four Weekend" of stakes competition.
Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro, winner of the Whitney (gr. I) and runner-up in the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) the last two years, has been assigned high weight of 125 pounds for the 129th running of the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) on Nov. 29.
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.
The March 27 Dubai World Cup, worth $6 million, has attracted 84 nominations, including Pleasantly Perfect, Medaglia d'Oro, Funny Cide, and Congaree.
A pair of Grade I stakes winners from the stable of trainer Bobby Frankel head the star-studded rosters of nominations to the four major stakes races that make up Churchill Downs' "Big Four Weekend" on Nov. 27-29.
Bobby Frankel, back after a nine-day honeymoon in Barbados, is regrouping his forces, and will likely run Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) runner-up Medaglia d'Oro in the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 28.
Dick Mandella's remarkable achievement of four Breeders' Cup victories highlighted an unforgettable afternoon of racing. But there were other heroes, and other thoughts to ponder.
Trainer Bob Baffert said Stonerside Stable's Congaree, who set the pace in the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I) before finishing fourth, will make his next start in the Cigar Mile Handicap (gr. I) Nov. 29 at Aqueduct.
Richard Mandella won his fourth race on the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championship card, and Alex Solis continued a celebration that began Friday when notching his 4,000th win, as Pleasantly Perfect won the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I) at Santa Anita.
As in past Breeders' Cups, there are longshots galore in this year's World Thoroughbred Championships. Finding them, however, is another matter. This year, the task will be more challenging than usual.
The stage is set for an exciting start to the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I), as Medaglia d'Oro and Congaree, drew side by side, in posts eight and nine, respectively.
Headed by Breeders' Cup Classic-Powered by Dodge (gr. I) contender Medaglia d'Oro, four Bobby Frankel-trained runners worked at Hollywood Park Sunday morning in preparation for next Saturday's World Thoroughbred Championships at Santa Anita.
Bobby Frankel said Tuesday that Ruffian Handicap (gr. I) winner Wild Spirit will not run in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), and will be given time off to point for next year's campaign. Frankel worked Peace Rules, Aldebaran, and Midas Eyes at Hollywood Park.
Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro, who hasn't started since his second-place finish in the Pacific Classic (gr. I), worked 7 furlongs in 1:25 at Hollywood Park Saturday, with jockey Jose Valdivia aboard.
Saratoga Notebook: Medaglia d'Oro's Foot Blisters; Velazquez on Volponi; Dynever Pennsylvania-Bound; Gygistar in Forego
Trainer Bobby Frankel said Friday that Whitney Handicap (gr. I) winner Medaglia d'Oro popped a pus pocket in a foot this week, a few days after finishing second to Candy Ride in the Pacific Classic (gr. I).
It was a big weekend for the Breeders' Cup Classic-Powered by Dodge, as Ten Most Wanted proved in the Travers that the pre-Kentucky Derby hype was justified. But it's going to be a long time before we see a performance as classy and flawless as the one we saw from Candy Ride in the Pacific Classic.
Candy Ride, the undefeated Argentine colt ridden by Julie Krone, turned in a sizzling performance while romping to a 3 1/4-length victory in the $1 million Pacific Classic (gr. I), setting a track record Sunday at Del Mar.
Hall of Fame jockey Julie Krone has been assigned to ride the undefeated Argentine-bred Candy Ride in Sunday's $1-million Pacific Classic at Del Mar
Hall of Fame jockey Julie Krone has been assigned to ride the undefeated Argentine-bred Candy Ride in Sunday's $1-million Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar.
Trainer Dan Hendricks withdrew Reba's Gold from consideration for Sunday's 13th running of the $1-million, grade I Pacific Classic at 1 1/4 miles on Del Mar's main track. The defection leaves the list of prospects for the track's signature event at five: Medaglia d'Oro, Milwaukee Brew, Candy Ride, Kudos and Fleetstreet Dancer.
Medaglia d'Oro and Milwaukee Brew, trainer Bobby Frankel's twin prospects for victory number seven in Del Mar's $1-million Pacific Classic (gr. I), are scheduled to be flown to Southern California Monday from Saratoga Racecourse in New York to complete their preparations for Sunday's race.
Saratoga Notebook: Frankel Drills Troops; Sky Mesa Dodges Bullet; Funny Cide Update; Strong Hope 'Super'
Looking to beat the rain, Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel had several of his top stars on the main track Saturday morning, led by likely Travers (gr.I) favorite Empire Maker.
Headed by triple millionaire Medaglia d'Oro, two-time Santa Anita Handicap winner Milwaukee Brew and South American sensation Candy Ride, a nomination list of 14 has been announced for the $1-million Pacific Classic (gr. I).
Mother Goose (gr. I) and Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) winner Spoken Fur breezed four furlongs in :51 2/5 Sunday morning over the muddy Oklahoma training track in preparation for the Alabama (gr. I) on Saturday.
Volponi, second in the Whitney (gr. I) on Saturday, will have a new rider when he returns to the races.
Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro withstood a determined rally from his rival Volponi in the stretch and pulled away for a one-length victory in the $750,000 Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Saturday.
Medaglia d'Oro and Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Volponi are among a contentious field of eight older horses entered for Saturday's $750,000 Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course.
Saratoga Notebook: Funny Cide Beats Rain; Wild and Wicked in Haskell; Whitney Ace Medaglia d'Oro Drills; Zito Fired Up
Fearing a wet track for Monday's scheduled breeze, trainer Barclay Tagg worked Kentucky Derby (gr.I) and Preakness (gr.I) winner Funny Cide early Sunday morning at Saratoga Race Course.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association and Breeders' Cup Ltd. on Monday released the first set of 2003 World Thoroughbred Rankings for six of the eight racing divisions that comprise the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.
Edmund Gann's Peace Rules, winner of the Blue Grass Stakes and Louisiana Derby, demonstrated his sharpness Tuesday morning, breezing a half-mile in :46 2/5 with Rudy Rodriguez aboard, galloping out 5 furlongs in :59 2/5.
Medaglia d'Oro sustained a minor injury in a stall accident at Hollywood Park last Friday and will miss a scheduled engagement in the May 16 Pimlico Special, according to trainer Bobby Frankel.
Edmund A. Gann's heavily favored Medaglia d'Oro and jockey Jerry Bailey assumed control coming out of the gate and pulled away in the stretch to score an easy victory in Saturday's $500,00 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) for older horses.
Medaglia d'Oro, whose connections bypassed last weekend's Dubai World Cup, will lead a small field to the post with top weight of 122 pounds in Saturday's $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II).
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel sent out a trio of his top sophomores and a star handicap horse for workouts over Hollywood Park's main track on Saturday.
Nominations have closed for the four races at Oaklawn Park during its Racing Festival of the South. Medaglia d'Oro and Congaree are nominated to the Oaklawn Handicap.
The U.S. will field a team of 13 horses at the Dubai World Cup meeting on Saturday, March 29. All the intended runners, including Harlan's Holiday and Blue Burner in the World Cup, have now arrived in Dubai. All but Xtra Heat, who shipped in a week early, landed in Dubai late on Sunday March 16.
Trainer Bobby Frankel says Strub Stakes winner Medaglia d'Oro won't be traveling to the Middle East for the $6 million Dubai World Cup, but the pending war in that region was not the main reason.
California-based trainer Jeff Mullins says he will not alter plans to participate in the March 29 Dubai World Cup card at Nad al Sheba racecourse in the United Arab Emirates despite a travel warning issued by the State Department to U.S. citizens currently in or traveling to that country.
Trainer Bob Baffert expressed delight in having Jerry Bailey back aboard Congaree for Saturday's $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) following the defection Tuesday of Medaglia d'Oro
Edmund Gann's Medaglia d'Oro will miss Saturday's Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) because trainer Bobby Frankel is dissatisfied with the colt's 124-pound impost.
Bobby Frankel confirmed Sunday morning that Strub Stakes winner Medaglia d'Oro will run in Saturday's $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I).
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