Fair Grounds Race Course concluded its 133rd season of racing, and its first under the ownership of Churchill Downs Inc. Sunday with its first increases in average all-sources and on-track wagering in four years.
A talented group of nine older horses--including seven graded stakes winners--will battle in Saturday's New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) at Fair Grounds with $500,000 on the line. Highweight Pollard's Vision and second-highweighted Badge of Silver will have to contend with Arthur Hancock's Wanderin Boy.
Shadow Cast rallied to capture her third straight stakes win at Fair Grounds Race Course, winning the $125,000 Bayou Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the turf Saturday.
Alumni Hall, ridden by Robby Albarado, turned back the closing Colonial Colony in the stretch to win Saturday night's $100,000 Maxxam Gold Cup at Sam Houston Race Park by three-quarters of a length.
America Alive won a thrilling renewal of the $100,000 Col. E.R. Bradley Handicap on the Fair Grounds turf Saturday, closing with a flurry on the far outside to nail Rapid Proof on the wire.
Overbrook Farm's homebred 3-year-old Storm Surge registered his first graded stakes victory when he captured the $100,000 Lecomte Stakes (gr. III) at Fair Grounds going a mile Saturday.
Odds-on favorite Crimson Stag made every pole a winning one, turning back longshot Zarb's Music Man to win the $75,000 Crescent City Derby for 3-year-old Louisiana-breds Saturday at Fair Grounds Race Course.
Overbrook Farm homebred Storm Surge took the lead in the top of the stretch and went on to capture the $60,000 Sugar Bowl Stakes for 2-year-olds Friday at Fair Grounds Race Course.
Shadow Cast picked up right where she left off earlier this year at Fair Grounds, returning to capture the $60,000 Pago Hop Stakes for 3-year-old fillies over the Stall-Wilson turf course Saturday.
Jockey Robby Albarado won his 3,000th race Thursday at Fair Grounds Race Course aboard 2-year-old maiden Isle of Silver.
As two more winter Thoroughbred meets prepare to open, management is lining up commitments from jockeys in the wake of walkouts at Churchill Downs and Hoosier Park. Meanwhile, members of an insurance task force that will meet for the first time Nov. 22 hope to maintain focus and expedite recommendations.
Humaita edged Aud at the finish of a long stretch duel to win the $150,000 Rood and Riddle Dowager Stakes Sunday going 1 1/2 miles on soft turf at Keeneland.
Ed Friendly's Prioress (gr. I) winner Friendly Michelle tops a field of 10 3-year-old fillies entered for the sixth running of the $200,000 Raven Run Stakes (gr. II) Friday at Keeneland.
Nothing to Lose dominated the $600,000 Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. IT) Saturday at Keeneland to give owner/breeders Kenneth L. and Sarah K. Ramsey a third contender for the Breeders' Cup World Championships to be held in three weeks at Lone Star Park near Dallas.
The 2003 Horse of the Year, Mineshaft, his trainer, and his regular rider make up three-fourths of the induction class of 2005 for the Fair Grounds Racing Hall of Fame, track officials announced Sept. 21.
Passed in the stretch, Stellar Jayne turned back Daydreaming in the final furlong to capture the $250,000 Gazelle Handicap (gr. I) for 3-year-old fillies Saturday, her second grade I win of the summer at Belmont Park.
Making his stakes debut, little known Love of Money put Pollard's Vision away in the stretch and romped to a smashing 8 1/2-length victory in the $750,000 Pennsylvania Derby (gr. II) at Philadelphia Park Monday.
Farish, Elkins & Webber's Alumni Hall, far back early, took command in mid-stretch to win the $75,000 Black Tie Affair Handicap by 2 ½ lengths on Saturday at Arlington Park.
The D. Wayne Lukas-trained Stellar Jayne kicked away from even-money favorite Ashado in the final furlong to register a huge 2 1/2-length surprise in the $300,000 Mother Goose (gr. I) for 3-year-old fillies at Belmont Park.
Stellar Jayne, ridden by Robby Albarado, took the lead in the upper stretch and cruised to a 3 1/4-length win over Dynaville in Saturday's co-featured $161,400 Dogwood Breeders' Cup (gr. III) for 3-year-old fillies at Churchill Downs.
Dare to Dream Stable's Nicole's Dream, piloted by Robby Albarado, resisted Tangier Sound in a prolonged stretch battle to win the $117,700 Mamzelle Stakes for older fillies and mares Thursday at Churchill Downs.
- By Victor Ryan
A federal judge is expected to rule this week on whether jockeys competing in this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) would be allowed to wear corporate advertising on their pants.
Shane Sellers and Robby Albarado, the top two jockeys of Fair Grounds' 2003-04 meet, saved the best for last on closing day Sunday.
Fair Grounds Race Course concluded its 2004 winter meet Sunday with across-the-board decreases in daily averages.
Team Block's Mystery Giver continued his mastery over the Fair Grounds' turf, coming from far back to win Sunday's $500,000 Mervin Muniz Jr. Memorial Handicap (gr. IIT) Sunday, setting a course record while going over the $1 million mark in career earnings.
Cat Genius held off a late charge from Mountain General to win the $125,000 Pelleteri Breeders' Cup Handicap by a half-length Sunday at Fair Grounds.
Jockey Robby Albarado Thursday became the seventh jockey in Fair Grounds history, and the second rider at the current meet, to ride six winners on a single card.
Spectacular Lisa posted her second consecutive stakes victory in impressive fashion in the $100,000 Chou Croute Handicap Saturday at Fair Grounds.
The connections of 2003 Horse of the Year Mineshaft may have a prime Triple Crown candidate this year with lightly-raced Gradepoint, who posted a resilient come-from-behind win over odds-on favorite Mr. Jester in the $150,000 Risen Star Stakes (gr. III) for 3-year-olds at Fair Grounds Sunday.
Shadow Cast rallied in the stretch to overtake Quick Temper and capture the $150,000 Silverbulletday Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies Saturday at Fair Grounds.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Badge of Silver, who arrived at Laurel Park Friday afternoon, has been installed the 4-5 choice in Monday's General George Handicap (gr. II) at seven furlongs.
Robby Albarado will be aboard Toccet when the 4-year-old son of Awesome Again goes postward in the $300,000 Strub Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita Saturday.
Mystery Giver gave new meaning to "three-peat" in winning the $125,000 Fair Grounds Breeders' Cup Handicap at 1 1/8 mile on the turf for the third consecutive year Saturday.
Robby Albarado will be honored as the winner of the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award in a winner's circle ceremony at Santa Anita Park on Feb. 7.
If Robby Albarado's luck holds, Jake Delhomme and the Carolina Panthers will upset the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVIII on Sunday.
Lotta Kim overcame a rough journey Sunday to notch her first career stakes victory, winning the $100,000 Tiffany Lass Stakes for 3-year-old fillies Sunday at Fair Grounds.
Robby Albarado, who was named the winner of the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award on Thursday, reflected on the accomplishment Saturday morning at Fair Grounds. Albarado is currently the leading rider at the New Orleans track.
Badge of Silver, starting for the first time in 10 months, made a triumphant return Friday in the featured $34,000 optional claiming event at Fair Grounds.
Waupaca completed a weekend stakes sweep for trainer Donnie K. Von Hemel by wiring the field in the $75,000 Woodchopper Handicap Saturday at Fair Grounds.
There was no snow at Fair Grounds on Saturday, but fans saw plenty of Snowdrops, who captured the $75,000 Pago Hop Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.
Jockey Shane Sellers will miss at least the next few days at Churchill Downs as he recovers from a fractured tailbone suffered in a paddock mishap on Thursday.
Robby Albarado sustained a wrist injury that will keep him out of action for several weeks and Corey Lanerie suffered a badly bruised thigh that will keep him out of the saddle for at least Sunday's mounts on a tough day for jockeys at Churchill Downs Saturday.
Still fifth with three-sixteenths of a mile remaining, Joe's Son Joey stormed down the middle of the course to win Friday's featured $84,525 Woodford County Stakes at Keeneland.
On the Fritz proved she was anything but when she rallied wide down the lane to score a head victory over Brown Eyed Beauty in Thursday's Clark County Stakes at Keeneland. Paige's Boo was 2 1/2 lengths back for third. The winner covered the 5 1/2 furlong turf distance in 1:02.92.
Joseph Vitello's Tenpins worked a strong six furlongs Sunday at Churchill Downs under regular jockey Robby Albarado, but his status for the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) on Oct. 25 at Oak Tree at Santa Anita remains uncertain.
Robby Albarado, Gary Baze, Julie Krone, Randall Meier and Richard Migliore have been nominated for the 2004 George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, Santa Anita Park announced this week.
Clock Stopper earned his first career stakes win Thursday with a sharp victory in the $108,300 Perryville Stakes at Keeneland.
Winstar Farm's favored Awesome Humor, seeking to regain her tremendous 2-year-old form, registered her first stakes win of 2003, holding off Cloakof Vagueness by three quarters of a length in Friday night's $300,000 Indiana Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. III) at muddy Hoosier Park.
With the greatest of ease, Mineshaft won his third consecutive grade I race since July and made his case for 2003 Horse of the Year by trouncing an overmatched field in Saturday's $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park.
Mineshaft, clearly the class of the field, shook off a stubborn Hold That Tiger in the stretch to draw away to an easy 4 1/4-length triumph in the $500,000 Woodward at Belmont Park Saturday.
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