Dance Teacher and Play all Day, two successful broodmares owned by Edward P. Evans, were euthanized in March because of complications from the infirmities of old age.
- By Steve Haskin
Joe McGinniss, whose previous books include Fatal Vision and The Selling of the President, 1968, is the author of a wonderful new racing book published by Simon & Schuster titled The Big Horse which tells the story of Hall of Fame trainer Phil "P.G." Johnson and the 2003 campaign of Volponi. It is a heartwarming, inspiring story that will have you laughing out loud.
By Paul Volponi -- Johnson was elected to racing's Hall of Fame in 1997. The honor was a tribute to the trainer's incredible consistency. He was enshrined without a dominating champion. Instead of a Pegasus, he rose on the wings of a work ethic that woke him at 2:30 a.m. each morning as he walked a treadmill and watched tapes of races before heading to the barn.
Hall of Fame trainer P.G. Johnson, who trained his family's homebred Volponi to win the 2002 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), died at his Rockville Centre, N.Y., home.
Hall of Fame trainer Phil "P.G." Johnson's 5-year-old multi-millionaire Volponi will enter stud at Rick and Liz Trontz' Hopewell Farm near Midway, Ky., in 2004.
Multi millionaire Volponi, last year's winner of the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), but last in this year's renewel when it was sponsored by Dodge, has been retired from racing, but no decision has been reached as to where he will enter stud.
The favorite hasn't won the Meadowlands Cup since Marquetry in 1993, but trainer P.G. Johnson is hoping to break that trend when he brings Volponi from New York to New Jersey for Friday's grade II test at Meadowlands. The 5-year-old finished second in last year's running of the race.
Volponi, who used the Meadowlands Cup (gr. III) as a springboard to victory in last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), breezed a half mile in :49 2/5 at Belmont for Friday night's running of the 1 1/8-mile event.
Dual Classic winner Funny Cide along with Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Volponi top a list of 29 nominations for this year's 26th running of the Oct. 3 Meadowlands Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. II).
Hall of Fame trainer Phil Johnson has decided to follow the same route in October that Volponi traveled to an upset victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) last year.
Saturday's Belmont Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIT) will feature last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Volponi, who will be running on grass for the first time since he ran second in this race last year.
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.
Jockey Jose Santos, who will ride Funny Cide in his bid for the Triple Crown Saturday afternoon in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), has a lot of people in his corner. Count among them Hall of Fame trainer P.G. Johnson, who compared him to the legendary Braulio Baeza.
With jockey Jose Santos aboard, Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Volponi breezed six furlongs over Belmont's main track in 1:13 2/5 Wednesday morning.
After winning the Preakness (gr. I) Saturday in Maryland, jockey Jose Santos was back to work at Belmont early Sunday morning, breezing Breeders' Cup Classic winner Volponi shortly after the track renovation break. The son of Cryptoclearance was credited with a four-furlong move in :48 3/5.
Hall of Fame trainer Phil "P.G." Johnson said he is planning an ambitious eight-race campaign for Breeders' Cup Classic winner Volponi in 2003, with the goal to win the richest race in North America once more.
Augustin Stable's With Anticipation will try to become the third horse to win back-to-back runnings of the Sword Dancer Invitational when he faces 10 opponents Saturday at Saratoga.
Jose Valdivia Jr. is a rising star in the bright constellation that is the Southern California riding colony. His recent win aboard Val Royal in the Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) showed the rest of the world what two continents have already learned--Valdivia, 27, is a profound talent who is carrying forth the grand racing tradition of his family.
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