Take the Points, winner of last year's Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) at Arlington Park, has been retired from racing after fracturing a splint bone in his right front leg.
Despite the return of the last three winners of the race, the 2010 edition of the Sword Dancer Invitational (gr. IT) lacks a true standout. That was made possible after the defection of probable favorite Take the Points.
Jason Shandler looks at the Turf Division, dominated by Gio Ponti in 2009. Read Blog
Irish-bred Chinchon, making just his second start in the U.S., showed an explosive turn of foot in the stretch and came from off the pace to capture the $760,000 United Nations Stakes (gr. IT) July 3 at Monmouth Park.
Four grade I winners and a pair of intriguing international contenders were among the nine entered for a suddenly wide-open editon of the $750,000 BetFair/TVG United Nations Stakes (gr. IT) July 3 at Monmouth Park.
Winchester registered his first stakes win since taking the 2008 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) when he posted a 21-1 stunner in the $400,000 Woodford Reserve Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) at Belmont Park June 5.
Gio Ponti, winner of last year's Woodford Reserve Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) at Belmont Park on his way to two Eclipse Awards, gets top weight of 122 pounds in this year's renewel.
Longshot Al Shemali took over from a trio of American horses in upper stretch and pulled away to win the $5 million Dubai Duty Free (UAE-I) March 27 at Meydan Racecourse.
In one of several changes involving horses slated to run on the March 27 Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) program, Starlight Partners' dual grade I winner Take the Points has been given a new target, the Dubai Duty Free (UAE-I).
It looks as though a full field of 14 runners will contest the $10 million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I)--the world's richest horse race--March 27 at Meydan Racecourse.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey will aim to make international history on March 27 when their Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (gr. I) winner Furthest Land competes in the $10-million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).
Starlight Partners' Take the Points, whose third career grade I victory last month was erased through a stewards' disqualification, shoots for his next big score in the record $10 million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).
Seven-year-old turf specialist Presious Passion will look to defend his Mac Diarmida title Feb. 28 at Gulfstream Park. Presious Passion was second in last year's Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) at Santa Anita Park.
Take the Points crossed the wire first in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (gr. IT) Feb. 6, but the 4-year-old colt was disqualified for interference, giving the win to odds-on choice Court Vision.
Todd Pletcher's all-star team was on display Sunday morning, with eight of his best colts working at Palm Meadows training center.
Take the Points, winner of a pair of grade I stakes in his last two starts, will renew acquaintances with Virginia Derby (gr. IIT) winner Battle of Hastings and five other graded winners Nov. 29 in the $300,000 Hollywood Derby (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park.
On April 17, 2008, American racing fans were immersed in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I), and no one was even giving the Breeders' Cup a second thought. But across the Atlantic, there was a scene being played out that would have a far greater effect on the Breeders' Cup than anyone could have imagined.
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
That this is an exceptional crop of second-year sires is not exactly news any more. Still, the point was hammered home again October 10 when two second-season horses were represented by grade I winners.
Starlight Partners Take the Points was rated off the leaders and took the lead rounding the turn to post a game head victory over Straight Story in the $300,000 Jamaica Handicap (gr. IT) at Belmont Park on Oct. 10.
Take the Points, narrow winner of the Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) on Arlington Million (gr. IT) day, heads the field for the $300,000 Jamaica Handicap (gr. IT), one of three grade I features on the Belmont Park program Oct. 10.
Starlight Partners' Take the Points, locked in a stirring stretch duel with Black Bear Island, got up in the final strides under Kent Desormeaux to earn his first graded stakes win in the $400,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) Aug. 8 on the Arlington Park turf.
Ashbrook Farm's Reb, winner of the three straight including the American Derby (gr. IIT), and Irish invader Black Bear Island, who has a group II victory in England this season, lead a wide-open field of 11 in the $400,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) for 3-year-olds Aug. 8 on the Arlington Park turf.
In a carbon copy of last month's Colonial Turf Cup (gr. IIT), Battle of Hastings dug in late to head Straight Story to win the $750,000 Virginia Derby (gr. IIT) on the Colonial Downs turf July 18.
Battle of Hastings took advantage of a gaping hole along the inside to gain the lead and then held off an unlucky Straight Story for a head victory in the $500,000 Colonial Turf Cup (gr. IIT) June 20 in Virginia.
There is no doubt in the mind of Frank Alexander that Lime Rickey is a stakes-caliber type of horse. One of these days, perhaps in the $500,000 Colonial Turf Cup (gr. IIT) on June 13, the son of Lemon Drop Kid will prove it, Alexander said. All he needs is a little bit of racing luck.
Battle of Hastings has been installed as a 2-1 favorite among 10 3-year-olds entered in the fifth running of the $500,000 Colonial Turf Cup (gr. IIT) at Colonial Downs on Saturday, June 20.
A review of the Preakness and the Triple Crown so far, including the jockey situation, and the return of Zenyatta. Plus, special guest Jack Wolf of Starlight Stable. Watch Video
It has long been the tradition for starters in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) to saddle on the turf course at Pimlico Race Course, but more than half of this year's field -- including morning-line favorite Rachel Alexandra and Pioneerof the Nile -- will be saddled indoors, Maryland Jockey Club paddock judge Mario Verge said May 15.
Can Rachel Alexandra come back in two weeks and beat the boys after earning outrageous speed figures that suggest a bounce is imminent? Was Mine That Bird's shocking Kentucky Derby score a fluke or the birth of a superstar?
Insight into the pedigrees of this year's Preakness contenders is only a click away. This easy-to-read report includes pedigree analyses from Alan Porter, Avalyn Hunter, and Tom Hall. Order your copy today and separate the contenders from the pretenders.
Trainer Todd Pletcher said May 9 that Susan Magnier's Dunkirk, 11th in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), is under consideration for the $1 million Belmont Stakes (gr. I) on June 6.
A decision as to whether Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Rachel Alexandra will be supplemented into the field for the $1 million Preakness (gr. I) could be made May 10 or 11 after the filly works for her new trainer, Steve Asmussen.
Friesan Fire, who grabbed his quarter and suffered a several cuts while finishing 18th in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), will ship down to Pimlico next Monday from Delaware Park and will work on Tuesday under jockey Gabriel Saez to determine whether the colt will run in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I).
The prospective field for the Preakness (gr. I) grew by three confirmed starters when the connections of Musket Man, General Quarters and Terrain committed to the middle jewel of racing's Triple Crown on May 6. The $1 million race now has nine definite starters, with Big Drama the first to arrive at historic Pimlico Race Course. The 1 3/16-mile event is on May 16.
- By Dan Liebman
Take the Points will not run in the Derby but Atomic Rain and Advice will.
- By Dan Liebman
Trainer Todd Pletcher said the morning of April 28 that two of the horses in his care, Dunkirk and Join in the Dance, are definite for the May 2 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I). Decisions have not been made on two others he trains, Advice and Take the Points.
Trainer Todd Pletcher reported he was pleased with the April 27 workouts by three of his possible starters in the May 2 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), and said a decision on which would actually start in the classic would be made April 28.
Bo Hirsch's homebred Papa Clem, winner of the Arkansas Derby (gr. II), breezed an easy five furlongs in the rain April 19 in his first serious training move over the track at Churchill Downs.
A lack of pace changed the game plan for odds-on choice Pioneerof the Nile, but jockey Garrett Gomez improvised, enabling the son of Empire Maker to hold off Chocolate Candy for a one-length win in the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on a picture-perfect day in Arcadia, Calif.
Trainer Julio Canani says The Pamplemousse doesn't need the lead to win the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) April 4. After a couple of interesting developments when entries were taken, that theory could be put to the test.
As intriguing as the Florida Derby (gr.I) already looks to be, it became even more intriguing when Todd Pletcher, trainer of Dunkirk, said Tuesday he is "strongly considering" running the maiden Europe as a rabbit, in order to prevent Quality Road from getting loose on an easy lead.
Lost in the overwhelming spectacle of the Kentucky Derby and the arduous road leading to Churchill Downs are the little-known ironies and twists of fate that get played out behind the scenes.
Joel Rosario, Santa Anita's third-leading rider, will ride El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) winner Chocolate Candy in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 4, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said.
Citing the success of foals from his first crop that raced in 2008 and increased demand, Millennium Farms announced the stud fee for Even the Score has been doubled from $7,500 to $15,000 for any additional mares booked to the stallion for the 2009 breeding season.
The last Saturday in November is NYRA's farewell to grade I and grade II racing, with the running of the Cigar Mile (gr. I) and the grade II Remsen and Demoiselle Stakes for 2-year-olds. But last year, there was a buzz in the air that had nothing to do with any of those three races.
Trainer Julio Canani insists he doesn't have Derby fever yet. But after the way his The Pamplemousse glided to victory as the 1-2 choice in the $200,000 Sham Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Feb. 28, that's going to be more difficult to believe as time marches on toward the first Saturday in May.
Take the Points, who shipped to California Thursday for Saturday's $200,000 Sham Stakes (gr. III), is a gamble that has already paid off big-time for the colt's breeders Ramiro Salazar and his wife Denise Belcher of Phoenix Farm.
March means horses shuttling all over looking for graded earnings and moving forward on the Kentucky Derby trail. One of the more interesting 3-year-olds is Imperial Council, who will head up to New York for the $250,000 Gotham Stakes (gr. III) March 7, which promises to be a bang-up race.
Either tracks like Gulfstream and Oaklawn are getting noticeably slower or the horses are. From all indications, it is the tracks, which is fine if they keep horses sounder. (See end of text for first official Top 30)
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