In a result that could have implications later in the 3-year-old season, improving Bourbonize got up just in time to edge favored Knock Em Flat by a neck in the $100,000 Northern Spur Stakes April 12 at Oaklawn Park.
Defeating four older fillies and mares, Juddmonte Farms' Close Hatches secured her third grade I with a front-running performance in the $588,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) April 11 at Oaklawn Park.
Lemon Drop Dream, tracking a blistering pace into the stretch, charged home to register a well-timed victory in the $294,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (gr. III) in his graded stakes debut April 10 at Oaklawn Park.
Leading Arkansas Derby (gr. I) contender Bayern got his first feel for the Oaklawn Park racing strip the morning of April 10 after arriving a day earlier with the contingent of California horses competing this weekend.
Ride On Curlin, a leading contender for the upcoming $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. I), had his last major drill before the race April 6, breezing seven furlongs in 1:26 4/5 at Oaklawn Park.
Sugar Shock atoned for her disqualification in the Honeybee Stakes (gr. III) a month earlier with a gate-to-wire win in the $400,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. III) April 5 at Oaklawn Park.
Sugar Shock, who was disqualified from first in the Honeybee Stakes (gr. III), moved one step closer to possible redemption in the $400,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. III) with a five-furlong breeze March 30 at Oaklawn Park.
TimeformUS Saturday Plays from Oaklawn, Santa Anita and Gulfstream read blog
Homebred Tapiture looks to continue his journey to the Kentucky Derby when he takes on two he beat in the Southwest Stakes along with California invaders, among others, in the March 15 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn.
Multiple stakes winner Taptowne, preparing for a likely start in the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) in a month's time, was assigned top weight of 117 pounds for the $200,000 Razorback Handicap (gr. III) March 15 at Oaklawn Park.
Don't Tell Sophia wasn't in a hurry leaving the gate, but she quickly got herself into gear and easily drew off to win her second straight $100,000 Bayakoa Stakes Feb. 16 at Oaklawn Park.
Street Story got the Oaklawn Park meet off to a fast start for 2013 leading jockey Ricardo Santana Jr. and trainer Steve Asmussen by winning the $100,000 Dixie Belle Stakes before a rain-drenched crowd of 15,031 Jan. 10.
TimeformUS Weekend Plays from Oaklawn and Santa Anita read blog
Owner Willis Horton isn't in a hurry to make a deal for likely 3-year-old champion Will Take Charge, and hasn't signed stud contracts or partnership agreements for the chestnut son of Unbridled's Song, he said Dec. 19.
Jockey Calvin Borel had nothing but praise for Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) contender Rose to Gold after her four-furlong work at Churchill Downs April 26. The Friends Lake filly went the distance in :47 4/5.
Oaklawn Park specialist Cyber Secret ran away with the $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) for track owner Charles Cella April 13 as heavily favored Fort Larned folded.
Vuitton came from well off the pace to edge favored Beat the Blues by a nose in the $100,000 Carousel Stakes at Oaklawn Park April 11, capping a sensational afternoon for trainer Steve Asmussen and jockey Ricardo Santana Jr.
Unlikely Rose to Gold stamped her ticket for the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) with another dominating performance at Oaklawn Park April 10, splashing her way to a front-running 4 1/2-length victory in the $400,000 Fantasy Stakes.
Grade I winner Grace Hall, seeking her first win of the 2013 campaign, will face six opponents in the $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) April 12 at Oaklawn Park as the 118-pound top weight.
Java's War, a contender for the Toyota Blue Grass (gr. I), and Falling Sky, headed for the Arkansas Derby (gr. I), posted bullet moves April 7 in preparation for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) preps.
Rags to riches story Rose to Gold, front-running winner of the Honeybee Stakes (gr. III) last month, returns to Oaklawn Park April 10 for the $400,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. III).
The Arkansas Racing Commission unanimously approved a 57-day race meet for Oaklawn Park in 2014. The Hot Springs track will run from Jan. 10 through April 12 next year.
The morning after stablemates Will Take Charge and Oxbow ran first and second in the March 16 Rebel Stakes (gr. II), trainer D. Wayne Lukas said he plans to keep his charges separated for their next starts.
Michael Langford's recent purchase Carve was among the first horses to hit the track at Oaklawn Park early on the morning of March 10, breezing a half-mile before heavy rains left the track in sloppy condition.
Charles J. Cella's Cyber Secret, a son of Broken Vow, edges pacesetter Golden Ron by a head in the March 9 Razorback Handicap (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park.
Rose to Gold put away heavily favored Flashy Gray in the stretch for a gate-to-wire triumph under Calvin Borel in the $150,000 Honeybee Stakes (gr. III) March 9 at Oaklawn Park.
Jockey Calvin Borel claimed career win No. 5,000 March 7 at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark.
Alternation drew the far outside post in a field of 10 for his attempt at a repeat victory in the $150,000 Razorback Handicap (gr. III) March 9 at Oaklawn Park.
Flashy Gray, the 6-1 favorite in the recent Kentucky Oaks Future Wager pool, makes her stakes and two-turn debut in the $150,000 Honeybee Stakes (gr. III) March 9 at Oaklawn Park.
Trainer Steve Hobby earned the 1,000th win of his career March 1 when Ruthless Empire easily won seventh race at Oaklawn Park, a maiden claiming event, as the 4-5 favorite under jockey Rosemary Homeister Jr.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas had an anxious moment when victorious Will Take Charge stumbled while pulling up after winning the Smarty Jones Stakes Jan. 21 at Oaklawn Park, but the Hall of Fame trainer said the colt is doing well.
Jockey Kevin Krigger is expected to be back in action for his mount in the Smarty Jones Stakes Jan. 21 after being involved in a spill at Santa Anita Park Jan. 18.
Two-time leading rider Cliff Berry got the 2013 Oaklawn Park season off to a good start Jan. 11 by guiding Donoharm to the horse's fourth consecutive victory in the $75,000 Fifth Season Stakes before 19,633 on opening day.
Jer-Mar Stable's Win Willy, a fan favorite at Oaklawn Park since winning the 2009 Rebel Stakes (gr. II) at odds of 56-1, is preparing to kick off his 7-year-old season with a start in the $75,000 Fifth Season Stakes Jan. 11.
She's All In turned in the biggest effort of her career when she came from off the pace to dominate the $200,000 Sixty Sails Handicap (gr. III) by 8 3/4 lengths at Hawthorne April 21.
Alternation shocked a strong field in the $400,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) April 14 at Oaklawn Park, leading all the way for his third consecutive stakes win of the meet.
Plum Pretty hadn't been out in more than five months but her class showed through as she strolled to a comfortable win in the $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) April 13 at Oaklawn Park.
Apriority, looking to establish himself as one of the top sprinters in the nation, heads a field of six for the $250,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park April 14.
Trainer Bob Baffert looks to continue his strong run of recent success at Oaklawn Park when he saddles Bodemeister and Secret Circle, the morning line favorites for the $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. I) April 14.
Recent grade I winners Hymn Book and Ron the Greek head a strong field of eight for the $400,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) April 14.
Favored Mamma Kimbo, in just her second start, led at every call to win the $300,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. II) during the Racing Festival of the South at Oaklawn Park April 11.
Reigning Horse of the Year Havre de Grace closed out her New Orleans winter vacation with a five-furlong workout April 1 and is being prepared to ship to Oaklawn Park, trainer Larry Jones reported.
Derby prep contenders Najjaar, My Adonis, Midnight Transfer, and I'll Have Another post timed workouts on the morning of March 30.
Rebel Stakes (gr. II) winner Secret Circle remains on edge for his expected start in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. I) following a bullet five-furlong drill in :58 2/5 at Santa Anita Park March 29.
Secret Circle handed trainer Bob Baffert his third consecutive victory in the Rebel Stakes (gr. II), taking over from Scatman in mid-stretch and holding off a late run by longshot Optimizer to score the $500,000 event.
Five of the top six finishers of the two divisions of last month's Southwest Stakes (gr. III) are back for $500,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. II), which drew a competitive and jam-packed field of 13 3-year-olds.
Instead of shipping the mare to Oaklawn Park for her season debut in the $150,000 Azeri (gr. III) on March 17, Horse of the Year Havre de Grace will stay at Fair Grounds for the New Orleans Ladies Stakes on the same day.
Pin Oak Stable's Alternation earned the Oaklawn stakes victory that eluded him last year when he authoritatively captured the $100,000 Essex Handicap Feb. 4.
Pin Oak Stud's regally bred son of Distorted Humor, now 4, returns to Oaklawn ready to redeem himself in the $100,000 Essex Handicap where he was installed as the 2-1 morning line favorite and is the 118-pound high weight.
Havre de Grace had no problem downing her bitter rival Blind Luck, as she took over approaching the quarter-pole and streaked home a 3 1/4-length winner in the $150,000 Azeri Stakes (gr. III) March 19 at Oaklawn Park
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