Oaklawn Park will offer its highest purse structure ever when it opens Jan. 24, 2003 with daily average purses of $235,000 to $240,000.
With a voluntary program tied to stallion-season contributions set to expire, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association hopes new members -- some of them returnees -- are back in the fold for 2003.
Oaklawn Park is holding a Bob Baffert look-alike contest as part of its Belmont Stakes (gr. I) festivities.
Oaklawn Park posted gains in attendance and both on-track and total handle during the Arkansas track's 52-day meet which concluded Saturday, when 52,122 fans attended for Arkansas Derby day.
James Cassels and Bob Zollars' Private Emblem drew away from the field in the stretch run to win Saturday's $500,000 Arkansas Derby (gr. II) by 4 1/2 lengths at Oaklawn Park.
Pin Oak Stable's homebred See How She Runs held off even-money favorite Lake Lady to win Friday's $200,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park. With the win, See How She Runs remains unbeaten from four career starts, all at Oaklawn Park.
A pair of undefeated fillies leads the field of seven in Friday's $200,000 Fantasy Stakes (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park. The Fantasy goes 1 1/16 miles for 3-year-old fillies with a 6:05 p.m. (CST) post.
The Arkansas Racing Commission Saturday approved Oaklawn Park's schedule request for 2003.
Only six fillies and mares passed the entry box for Saturday's Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) at Oaklawn Park, but oh, what a cast. Of the six, all are grade I winners.
The number of horses expected for the April 13 Arkansas Derby (gr. II) expanded to 12 Wednesday with the addition of Dial A Hero, It'sallinthechase, Like A Hero, and Guppie's Secret. But Oaklawn Park officials are beginning to fear the connections of Rebel Stakes (gr. III) runner-up Ocean Sound may opt for the Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) instead.
Trainer Richard Jackson on Wednesday declared Remington Rock a non-starter for Saturday's Oaklawn Handicap (gr. I) due to sickness. The defection of Remington Rock from Oaklawn Park's Saturday co-feature leaves an expected field of eight for the 1 1/8-mile race.
Hall of Fame Trainer Bill Mott has joined the Racing Festival of the South at Oaklawn Park with his entry of This Fleet is Due in Saturday's $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. I). The Oaklawn is part of a double-header with the $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I).
The connections of Caressing and Atelier have opted to skip Saturday's $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I), part of a double-header with the $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. I) in Oaklawn Park's Racing Festival of the South.
Dollar Bill will race under 114 pounds, including jockey Jorge Chavez, when he goes postward in Saturday's $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. I).
Jockey Pat Day will ride D. Wayne Lukas-trained Spain for the first time since winning the Turfway Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) in September of 2000 in the $500,000 Apple Blossom (gr. I) on April 6 at Oaklawn Park.
Trainer James Cassidy has decided to keep Rebel Stakes (gr. III) runner-up Ocean Sound at Oaklawn Park to run in the April 13 Arkansas Derby (gr. II). Another Southern California-based horse likely for the Arkansas Derby is Holdthehelm.
Bits and pieces from around the industry...
With a host of local horses not entered in Saturday's $100,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. III), two horses shipping in from out of town -- Jeremiah Jack and Ocean Sound -- will likely vie for favoritism in the Oaklawn Park feature race.
Jeremiah Jack is slated to make his first start since undergoing surgery to correct a breathing problem in Saturday's $100,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park.
Earl H. Shultz homebred Ask Me No Secrets set a moderate pace then kicked clear in the stretch to win Saturday's $200,000 Oaklawn Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) by 4 1/2 lengths. Under Mike Smith, the 4-year-old daughter of Seattle Slew completed the 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.56 on a fast track.
Don C. McNeill homebred Mr Ross passed Big Numbers in the stretch, then held off fast-closing Remington Rock by a neck Saturday to win the $100,000 Razorback Handicap (gr. III) for the second year in a row.
Paloma Parilla and Cojet will both miss their anticipated starts in the March 23 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park. Calvin Borel was to ride Cojet in the Rebel, but quickly picked up the mount on Ocean Sound for the 1 1/16-mile race.
For the third time this season, Oaklawn Park has increased purses, with the newest boost going into effect Saturday.
As Oaklawn Park prepares to enter the heart of its winter-spring season, the Hot Springs, Ark., racetrack announced a third purse increase, effective March 16.
Crafty Shaw looks to keep the winning ball rolling with a victory in Saturday's $100,000 Razorback Handicap (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park, but he will face a tough challenge from defending champion Mr Ross.
Bits and pieces from around the industry...
Terry Thompson, the leading rider of the current Oaklawn Park meet, was injured Saturday after falling from Fleet Boss during the track's fifth race.
Bedanken stalked the early pace, then edged clear in the stretch to earn her second straight Oaklawn Park stakes win in Saturday's $75,000 Honeybee Stakes.
Cozy Susie, a two-time winner on turf but a maiden of the main track, will go to post as the highweighted filly in Saturday's Honeybee Stakes (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park.
New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) runner-up Graeme Hall will likely return to the site of his Arkansas Derby (gr. II) victory for his next start, according to trainer Todd Pletcher. Pletcher, though, hopes the 5-year-old son of Dehere can improve upon his fourth-place finish in last year's renewal of the Oaklawn Park Handicap (gr. I).
Citing frigid temperatures, management at Sportsman's Park cancelled live racing Monday. Racing at the Illinois track is scheduled to resume Tuesday.
Private Emblem and Paloma Parilla won their respective divisions of the split $75,000 Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park Saturday.
With a large number of trainers expressing interest in running their 3-year-olds in the $75,000 Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park March 2, the track's racing secretary, Pat Pope, is considering spilling the race into two divisions. Among those possible for the one-mile fixture is the promising Frank Brothers trainee Clergy.
There were two winning tickets worth $182,026 each in Oaklawn Park's Pick 6 wager called the Classix on Thursday. The winning wagers were made in Las Vegas and at Penn National Racetrack in Granville, Pa.
In the interest of the safety, Oaklawn Park has cancelled both live and simulcast programs for Wednesday, Feb. 6. The decision was made Wednesday morning following a four-inch snowfall overnight in the Hot Springs area.
Oaklawn Park's three-day opening weekend lured more than 45,000 patrons for what officials at the Hot Springs, Ark., racetrack said was one of the strongest meet kick-offs in the past 10 years.
Oaklawn Park raises the curtain on its 54-day meet Friday in the heart of Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas. The oval first saw racing in 1905.
Jockey Joe Judice suffered a compound fracture of the left tibia in a freak accident during training hours at Oaklawn Park on Thursday.
It may be the last major winter meet to get underway, but it won't be the least on a number of fronts. Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., is looking forward to a strong 2002 season because of higher purses, an increase in on-track business, and plenty of interest by horsemen.
Racing and breeding news and information.
It has taken almost four years, but "Instant Racing" machines have become an overnight sensation at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark. In November, handle generated by the machines topped $1.2 million.
Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., saw significant decreases in attendance and on-track handle for its 52-day meet that ended April 15.
Arkansas' Oaklawn Park drew an average of 11,251 fans a day this season, down from last year's 12,428. Based on figures through the meet's April 14 close, wagering by Oaklawn patrons on races at the Hot Springs track was down 11.1%. But wagering on simulcast races was up 8%. Calvin Borel won the jockey title with 70 winners. Cole Norman won the training title by saddling 43 winners.
Those who thought Balto Star's romping win in the March 24 Spiral Stakes (gr. II) at Turfway Park was a fluke better think again. It appears Balto Star is indeed a star. Under Mark Guidry, Balto Star danced away from what was thought to be a competitive field of 11 3-year-olds April 14 in the $500,000 Arkansas Derby (gr. II). Finely tuned by trainer Todd Pletcher, Balto Star went fast early and late and drew off to a 4 1/2-length win in the slop. He covered the nine furlongs in a solid 1:49.04.
Serena's Tune was installed as the 9-5 favorite in the $200,000 grade II Fantasy Stakes, to be run Friday, April 13 at Oaklawn Park. Serena's Tune is the daughter of Mr. Prospector and sophomore filly champion Serena's Tune. A field of 10 fillies will contest the Fantasy over 1 1/16 miles.
Gourmet Girl tracked pacesetter Asher through the early going en route to a 4 1/2-length win in Sunday's $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) at Oaklawn Park. Lu Ravi finished second in the race for the second consecutive year, this time finishing a half-length ahead of Lazy Slusan. Last year's winner and this year's 8-5 favorite Heritage of Gold finished in tenth place, with Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) winner Spain fourth.
Ogden Phipps' 4-year-old homebred Traditionally earned his first stakes win Saturday, upsetting 6-5 favorite Wooden Phone and Sir Bear in the $600,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. I) at Oaklawn Park. The win marks the third in four starts on the year for the regally bred Traditionally, a son of leading sire Mr. Prospector and broodmare of the year and champion Personal Ensign.
Wooden Phone, who beat Horse of the Year Tiznow in the Strub Stakes (gr. II) and finished second to the champion in the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) is the 9-5 favorite in Saturday's Oaklawn Handicap.
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