It might not be a gathering of young runners, but the $150,000 Mac Diarmida Handicap (gr. IIT) has attracted 12 solid turf horses to go 1 3/8 miles at Gulfstream Park March 16.
The $150,000 Sycamore Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland has drawn 10 older horses seeking redemption after recent performances.
Trainer Patrick Biancone planned on running his multiple graded stakes winner Cosmonaut in the Arlington Million (gr. IT) earlier this month, but a minor foot problem prevented it. Instead they'll shoot for a nice consolation prize in the $200,000 Bernard Baruch Handicap (gr. IIT) on the Saratoga turf as part of the Travers supporting card Aug. 25.
Aaron and Marie Jones' Sunriver has found a home on the turf after taking a front-running victory in the $150,000 Bowling Green Handicap (gr. IIT) at 1 3/8 miles on the Belmont Park inner turf course Sunday.
Following a big effort in the Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) last month, Shadwell's Shakis returns to the Belmont Park inner lawn as one of the favorites in Sunday's $150,000 Bowling Green Handicap (gr. IIT).
For the third consecutive year, Frank Stronach's Adena Springs has been voted the outstanding breeder of the year.
Juddmonte Farms' homebred Art Master, the beaten favorite in his U.S. debut in Belmont Park's Kelso Handicap (gr. IIT), can make amends when he faces eight rivals in the $150,000-added River City Handicap (gr. IIIT) Friday at Churchill Downs.
Trainer Todd Pletcher's decision to scratch Go Deputy from the Arlington Million (gr. IT) to run instead in Saturday's $500,000 Sword Dancer Invitational (gr. IT) at Saratoga worked out brilliantly when the 6-year-old Deputy Minister horse ran away from the field at odds of 6-1.
With English Channel heading out of Saratoga for a trip to Chicago for the Arlington Million (gr. IT), eight older turf horses have been entered for Saturday's Sword Dancer Invitational (gr. IT). The 12-furlong Sword Dancer goes as the ninth race and is one of two graded stakes on the Saratoga program.
No jockey has won more races at Arlington Park than Hall of Fame rider Earlie Fires, and the veteran added to his total with a well-timed come-from-behind upset victory by a head aboard Major Rhythm in Sunday's $195,500 Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IIIT).
Stronach Stables' Silver Whistle, most recently fifth in the Grade I Manhattan Handicap at Belmont Park June 10, looks to return to his winning ways in Sunday's $200,000 Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IIIT), Arlington's traditional Fourth of July weekend headliner.
English Channel leads a stellar cast in the $400,000 Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) on the Belmont Park turf Saturday, the race that precedes the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
Stronach Stable's 4-year-old Silver Whistle finally wore down 30-to-1 outsider Ramazutti in the final strides of Saturday's $150,000 Captain Morgan Pan American Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Gulfstream Park to score by a neck.
Midnight Cry Stable's 4-year-old Brazilian-bred Einstein, seeking his fourth straight win this meeting on the Gulfstream Park turf, is the probable favorite in the $150,000 Captain Morgan Pan American Handicap (gr. IIIT) at 12 furlongs.
Jambalaya shoots for his third consecutive stakes victory in Saturday's $300,000 Jamaica Handicap (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at nine furlongs on the inner turf at Belmont Park.
Woodbine invader Jambalaya made it four wins a row since owner/trainer Catherine Day Phillips switched him to the turf with a heart-pounding win over favored Silver Whistle in the $111,900 Saranac (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds on the turf at Saratoga Sunday.
Woodbine-based invader Jambalaya, a winner of three turf races in the past three months, is one of the horses to beat in the $100,000 Saranac (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds Sunday on the Saratoga grass course.
Only one horse in Monday's $150,000 National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame Handicap (gr. IIT) has a graded stakes grass win, so there are plenty of contenders looking to step up on the Saratoga turf course.
John Velazquez mirrored tactics used in his Colonial Turf Cup win three weeks ago in Saturday's $750,000 Virginia Derby (gr. IIIT) and produced the same result. With a 3 1/4-length romp, trainer Todd Pletcher's turf standout now has captured two legs of the $5 million Grand Slam of Grass.
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