Jim Jackson, whose horse Valhol finished first in the 1999 Arkansas Derby (gr. II) but later was disqualified, died Jan. 8 at his Rockdale, Texas, home.
Valhol, confidently ridden by Robby Albarado, won Saturday night's running of the $100,000 MAXXAM Gold Cup at Sam Houston Park.
Fifty Stars is one of two Steve Asmussen trainees slated for the Gold Cup, while Dallas Keen and James Jackson try to replicate the 2000 win by Allen's Oop with Valhol.
James Jackson stood at the summit of Thoroughbred racing during the first Saturday in May in 1999 when his 3-year-old gelding Valhol started in the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. However, his memory of the Run for the Roses and what occurred a few weeks before have finally spurred the 49-year-old Texan to retire from racing.
Valhol is being prepared for a start in the April 27 Texas Mile (gr. III) at Lone Star Park. Since finishing a disappointing eighth in the New Orleans Handicap (gr. II), the 6-year-old gelded son of Diazo has been sidelined with a foot ailment.
Parade Leader, unable to live up to his potential on grass, showed his main track route ability in the New Orleans Handicap.
Two horses coming out of the Donn Handicap (gr. I) will go to post as the highweights in the $500,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II).
James Jackson's Valhol rallied from just off the pace then held Parade Leader safely at bat to win the $125,000 Whirlaway Handicap at the Fair Grounds. On a fast track, the 6-year-old gelded son of Diazo completed the 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.94.
James Jackson's Valhol, previously best known for being the disqualified winner of the 1999 Arkansas Derby, successfully returned from a lengthy layoff to win the $75,000 Tenacious Handicap at Fair Grounds on Sunday.
The voice over the public address system said, "Bring your horses over for the eighth race." Trainer Grover (Bud) Delp had brought hundreds of horses over for the eighth race and was in no hurry. In his mind, this horse was special and everything had to be perfect. The object of Delp's attention was the improving 4-year-old Include. The handsome son of Broad Brush stood in his stall like a gentleman while the groom applied the moistened tongue-tie and slipped a set of yellow blinkers over the colt's head. "He can be a handful," Delp said, "so we tack him up in the stall. That seems to keep him in a frame of mind where he is relaxed and focused at the same time. It's not standard procedure but you have to do it the way the horse tells you."
Valhol finally got redemption and a stakes win the courts can't take away. In a much-maligned career that began at Fair Grounds less than two years ago, Valhol pranced to the winner's circle after a victory in the $75,000 Diplomat Way Handicap on Sunday. After a well documented win then disqualification in the 1999 Arkansas Derby in only his third career start, the strapping 5-year-old chestnut has been plagued by physical ailments
After several years of legal action, the attempt by owner James Jackson to overturn the disqualification of his horse Valhol from victory in the 1999 Arkansas Derby has ended. On Thursday, the Arkansas Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling stripping Valhol of the victory and the winner's $300,000 purse.
North East Bound took the lead after six furlongs run in 1:09.46 and pulled away down the stretch for a 3 1/2-length victory Saturday in the $400,000 Meadowlands Cup Handicap (gr. II).
Vision and Verse was installed Thursday as the 3-1 morning-line favorite for Saturday night's $400,000 Meadowlands Cup Handicap (gr. II). 10 horses are entered for the 1 1/8-mile Meadowlands feature, including Leave It to Beezer, the starting highweight at 117 pounds.
James Jackson's Valhol put in a bullet work at Colonial Downs Tuesday morning in preparation for Saturday night's $400,000 Meadowlands Cup (gr. II). The 4-year-old gelded son of Diazo will be making his second start since bone chip surgery following his third-place finish in the 1999 Ohio Derby (gr. II).
The Bobby Frankel-trained Skimming was assigned highweight of 122 pounds for the $400,000 Meadowlands Cup Handicap (gr. II), a pound more than Golden Missile and three more than Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus. Each of the three top weighted horses, however, are under consideration for other races.
Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus highlights the list of 23 horses nominated to the $400,000 Meadowlands Cup Handicap (gr. II). The 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds and up will be run Oct. 7 at Meadowlands.
Valhol, who was disqualified from victory in the 1999 Arkansas Derby, won an allowance event at Delaware Park Tuesday in his first start since last summer.
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