The 2008 National Steeplechase Association season, which came to a close Nov.29 with the inaugural Palm Beach race meet, set new highs in total and average purses.
Issues surrounding a $90-million purse subsidy from Atlantic City casinos continue to plague the New Jersey horseracing industry.
Forty Thieves captured the colt and gelding division of the NATC (National Association of Two-Year-Old Consignors) Futurity just after R Betty Graybull scored in the filly division Sept. 27 at Monmouth Park in New Jersey.
Big Brown made his return to turf a successful one Sept. 13 in the $500,000 Monmouth Stakes, as he sprinted to a commanding early lead under Kent Desormeaux and then gamely held off Proudinsky for the length of the stretch to win by a neck.
Being a dual-classic winner sure has its share of privileges. One of them is being able to have a new stakes written for you, one with a very large purse and on the exact day of your choosing.
TVG will offer exclusive live coverage of Big Brown as he makes his final prep for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) in the $500,000 Monmouth Stakes Sept. 13 at Monmouth Park in New Jersey.
Early handicapping on signal distribution of the Breeders' Cup World Championships shows the prestigious event will be available to a wide variety of outlets and bettors, at first glance calming fears of any "signal wars" fallout evident in other revenue-sharing disputes involving advance deposit wagering.
On Sept. 9, trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. addressed the media to answer questions about dual-classic winner Big Brown, who returns to the grass in the newly-created Monmouth Stakes Sept. 13 in New Jersey. Though Dutrow fielded questions regarding Big Brown's race this weekend, inevitably, the talk eventually returned to the one subject everyone seems obsessed with: Big Brown vs. Curlin.
Dual-Classic winner Big Brown tops a list of 35 nominations for the Monmouth Stakes, a mile and an eighth turf test to be contested at Monmouth Park Sept. 13.
Big Brown breezed an easy six furlongs in 1:15 3/5 on the grass at Aqueduct Wednesday in preparation for the $500,000 Monmouth Stakes to be run over the Monmouth turf course Sept. 13.
Let's Go Stable's Silent Valor made a strong four-wide move entering the stretch and ran down the leader inside the sixteenth-pole to post a 1 1/2-length victory in the $150,000 Sapling Stakes (gr. III), a six-furlong sprint for 2-year-olds on the Monmouth Park dirt.
Ol Memorial Stable and Clint Glasscock's Buffalo Man earned his second graded stakes score of the season Aug. 30 in the $150,000 Red Bank Stakes (gr. IIIT), as he split horses in deep stretch and inched clear for a narrow victory on the Monmouth Park turf.
Seven promising 2-year-olds, led by Sanford (gr. II) runner-up Officer Ipod, will vie for supremacy in the $150,000 Sapling Stakes (gr. III) Aug. 31 at Monmouth Park.
Hotstufanthensome was claimed for $62,5000 by trainer Terri Pompay for Main Street Stable's in January. Since then the 8-year-old Awesome Again gelding was a well-beaten fifth in the Elkwood, won by a head in a 1 1/16-mile optional claiming July 3 at Monmouth and stalked the pace but came up just short in the Oceanport.
Big Brown turned in an easy five-furlong breeze in 1:04 3/5 on the Aqueduct turf course Aug. 28 in preparation for the $500,000 Monmouth Stakes Sept. 13.
In what amounted to a little more than a workout, Hystericalady defended her title in the $300,000 Molly Pitcher Stakes (gr. II) with ease Aug. 24, romping to an eight-length victory on the Monmouth Park dirt at odds of 1-9.
Any rival having to face the exceptional mare Hystericalady would have a hard time, no matter when or where it is. But having to do it at Monmouth Park, where she has proven to like the surface, and in the $300,000 Molly Pitcher Stakes (gr. II), an event she won by daylight last season, make it an even more unenviable task.
Dual classic winner Big Brown is scheduled to have his prep for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) in a turf race at Monmouth Park on Sept. 13, according to Michael Iavarone, co-president and co-CEO of IEAH Stables.
River Ridge Ranch's Maren's Meadow, dismissed at odds of 11-1 in a field of five 3-year-old fillies, broke on top and never trailed, pulling away in the stretch to win the $150,000 Monmouth Oaks (gr. III) by 4 1/2 lengths Aug. 9.
When last seen, J. Mack Robinson's homebred African Violet was dueling in the stretch with Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Proud Spell in the July 12 Delaware Oaks (gr. II). Although coming up three-quarters of a length short that day, the daughter of Lemon Drop Kid proved she can run with the best 3-year-old fillies in the nation.
ReRun announced that owners IEAH Stables and Paul Pompa Jr. will have Big Brown participate in the organization's "Running for ReRun" charity at the Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park Aug. 3.
Monmouth Park Racetrack canceled live racing following the running of the fifth race July 27 due to inclement weather that included heavy rains and lightning.
Taylor Made announces stallions for Matchmaker Stakes (gr. III), Aug. 3 at Monmouth Park.
Breeders' Cup announced the launch of its first fantasy sports game, the Breeders' Cup Fantasy Challenge. The Breeders' Cup Fantasy Challenge coincided with the Breeders' Cup Challenge that began July 5.
Trainer Mary Hartmann, who has conditioned horses at Monmouth Park for more than a decade, got the biggest win of her career when she saddled Presious Passion for a dramatic front-running upset victory in the $750,000 United Nations Stakes (gr. IT) July 5 at the New Jersey track.
Dismissed at odds of 7-1 in a field of six, Notional lagged behind in the early stages, made his presence known at the quarter-pole, and took over at the top of the lane en route to a 2 1/4-length victory in the $300,000 Salvator Mile Handicap (gr. III) July 5 at Monmouth Park. The race was the first North American Breeders' Cup Challenge event of the season.
Winning for the fourth time this season and collecting his third graded victory, Zayat Stables' J Be K stamped himself as one of the legitimate leaders of the sprint division, putting on a dominating performance in the $150,000 Jersey Shore Stakes (gr. III) July 4 at Monmouth Park.
Fresh off his 5 1/2-length romp in the June 7 Woody Stephens Stakes (gr. II), Zayat Stables' J Be K looks to add a third graded stakes to his resume, as he takes on five rivals in the $150,000 Jersey Shore Stakes (gr. III) July 4 at Monmouth Park.
The out-of-competition tests for EPO ordered by the New Jersey Racing Commission on 41 of trainer Bruce Levine's horse at Monmouth Park came back negative.
Nine 3-year-old fillies in search of their first graded stakes win are set to square off June 28 in the $150,000 Boiling Springs Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park in New Jersey.
Bruce Levine, the leading trainer at Monmouth Park, had his entire stable of 41 horses tested for erythropoietin, commonly known as EPO, by a New Jersey state veterinarian who made a surprise visit to Levine's Monmouth barn June 24 at the request of the New Jersey Racing Commission.
Jayeff B Stables' Social Queen rallied from last early in an eight-horse field to win the $150,000 Eatontown Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares by neck at Monmouth Park June 14.
The winner and runner-up from Monmouth Park's May 26 Politely Stakes -- plus the fourth-place finisher -- will meet again at the New Jersey oval June 14, when a field of eight fillies and mares go postward in the $150,000 Eatontown Handicap (gr. IIIT).
Monmouth Park officials said two nearby off-track wagering parlors and skyrocketing gasoline prices have led to decreases in attendance and on-track handle nearly one month into the New Jersey racetrack's 2008 meet.
The New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority Board of Commissioners has named Lennon Register, a current Pennwood Racing executive, as senior vice president of racing, replacing Dennis Dowd, who was named to the position of senior vice president of legal and governmental affairs.
Kevin Sleeter will send out homebred Talkin About Love in the $70,000 Red Cross Stakes May 9, the opening day feature at Monmouth Park.
Trainer Eric Guillot was refreshingly candid during an April 15 teleconference hosted by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, calling his horse "one of the 15 who might not belong," but saying a trip to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) is definitely under consideration for Salute the Sarge.
Horses returned to Monmouth Park in New Jersey the morning of April 14 to prepare for a 99-day meet that gets under way May 9.
New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine signed legislation April 11 that allows a $90-million purse supplement for New Jersey racetracks to move forward. Now, the racing industry must decide how the money will be divvied up for purses at perhaps four racetracks.
The New Jersey legislature has approved a deal whereby Atlantic City casinos will pay the horseracing and breeding industry $90 million over three years in return for a guarantee the tracks won't pursue video lottery terminals during the period.
A plan to help New Jersey's struggling horse racing industry while protecting casinos from video gambling machines at racetracks has cleared a hurdle in the state legislature.
A proposal to use 80 acres from the soon-to-be-shuttered Fort Monmouth property in Oceanport, N.J., for a training and winter stabling facility has been made by Dennis Drazin, president of the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, to borough officials.
Atlantic City casinos have agreed to boost financial help for New Jersey's racetracks, but officials said long-term funding issues remain.
The repackaging of the Breeders' Cup World Championships and move of female stakes from their customary Saturday spot is part of the plan to make Friday's program "true Breeders' Cup championship racing," Breeders' Cup president Greg Avioli said.
Headlined by the $1 million Haskell Invitational (gr. I) on Aug. 3, Monmouth Park will offer $3.85 million in graded stakes for the 2008 racing season, which runs from May 9 through Sept. 28.
Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint winner Maryfield earns inaugural female sprinter Eclipse Award.
Ken Lennox, former racing director at Monmouth Park, died Dec. 18 at Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, N.J.
A deal struck between TVG and the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority extends the network's previous agreement for rights to signals from Monmouth Park and Meadowlands, but allows the NJSEA to separately negotiate with entities affiliated with TrackNet Media Group.
With more dates in 2008 and, at this point, no purse subsidy from the state, New Jersey racing is at the crossroads again.
Oprah Winney exits an effort that disappointed her connections in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint, but the competition will be softer for their filly in the $75,000 Garland of Roses Handicap at Aqueduct on Dec. 1.
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