Trainer Steve Asmussen, who will be enshrined in the Racing Hall of Fame later this year, doesn't figure to have to use much time on strategy for his two Belmont Stakes presented by NYRA Bets (gr. I) starters June 11 at Belmont Park.
With half the field scratched Jan. 17, LNJ Foxwoods' Constellation made quick work of three overmatched challengers in the $100,000 Ruthless Stakes at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Turtle Bird Stable's undefeated Cluster of Stars repelled the challenge of Los Ojitos and preserved her perfect record April 13 at Aqueduct Racetrack, winning the $200,000 Distaff Handicap (gr. II).
Harvey Weinstein's Turtle Bird Stable announced Dec. 2 that grade I winner Haynesfield has been retired. A stakes winner each year he raced, Haynesfield won 10 of his 19 lifetime starts for earnings of $1,319,481.
Haynesfield held off a game rally by Green Monster to score by a length in the $200,000 McMahon Adena Empire Classic Oct. 22, the richest race on Belmont Park's New York Showcase Day for state breds.
Zayat Stables' Nehro went to the Belmont Park track early Monday, June 6, and the son of Mineshaft breezed a half-mile in :50 4/5 in preparation for the June 11, $1 million Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
New York-bred Haynesfield won his fourth consecutive race and notched the biggest victory of his career when he took over turning for home en route to a convincing 2 3/4-length score in the $300,000 Suburban Handicap (gr. II)
Racing in graded stakes company for the first time since disappointing in the Gotham (gr. III) this spring, Haynesfield looked like a completely different 3-year-old this time around, as he took over approaching the quarter-pole and easily repelled odds-on favorite Gone Astray to win the $103,500 Discovery Handicap (gr. III) by 4 1/2 lengths Nov. 21 at Aqueduct.
Bigger things await Haynesfield after the 3-year-old colt outclassed five rivals in the $107,600 Whirlaway Stakes Feb. 7 for his third consecutive win on Aqueduct's inner track.
Haynesfield picked up his third consecutive victory Jan. 3, warding off a stiff mid-stretch challenge from Mike From Queens and drawing off to a 3 1/2-length victory in the 34th running of the $69.700 Count Fleet Stakes for 3-year-olds at a mile and 70 yards on Aqueduct's fast inner dirt track.
The trainer broke his own record for most wins by a trainer in a single season Nov. 23. He now has with 557 victories with six weeks of racing still remaining in 2008.
Winning for the fourth time this season and collecting his third graded victory, Zayat Stables' J Be K stamped himself as one of the legitimate leaders of the sprint division, putting on a dominating performance in the $150,000 Jersey Shore Stakes (gr. III) July 4 at Monmouth Park.
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