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Look for Birdstone in Classic, Zito Says

Birdstone's 2 1/2-length win Saturday in the Travers (gr. I) at Saratoga, coupled with the colt's upset of Smarty Jones in the Belmont (gr. I), opens up the race for this year's 3-year-old championship, at least in the minds of some.

Birdstone Breezes for Upcoming Travers

Belmont Stakes winner Birdstone, owned by Marylou Whitney Stables, breezed six furlongs in 1:16 Sunday over the fast Oklahoma training track at Saratoga with regular exercise rider Maxine Correa up.

Zito Pair May Join The Cliff's Edge in Preakness

Trainer Nick Zito, who saddled two horses in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I), could have two or even three in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I). Zito said owner Tracy Farmer and racing manager Lincoln Collins are seriously considering the second leg of the Triple Crown for Sir Shackleton and/or Royal Assault.

Steve Haskin's Derby Report: A Morning at the Gate

With the serious works out of the way, it was time to get a different perspective on things. The starting gate is a hotbed of activity, as you get to see many of the Derby horses close up and observe how they're acting, how they're looking, and how they handle the gate. It's also a great vantage point to watch the gallops.

The Cliff's Edge Sizzles at Churchill

Although the final time might have been a little faster than he would have preferred, trainer Nick Zito was pleased with Monday's workout by The Cliff's Edge as the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) winner continued to prepare for the May 1 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

Zito Thrilled by Birdstone's Churchill Work

Marylou Whitney Stable's Birdstone, who was scratched from last week's Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland, resumed serious preparation for Kentucky Derby 130 (gr. I) May 1 with a five-furlong workout on Thursday at Churchill Downs.

McGaughey, Zito, Skip Away Among Hall of Fame Finalists

Trainers Shug McGaughey and Nick Zito and 1998 Horse of the Year Skip Away are among the candidates for election to the National Museum of Racing's Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility, Museum president John T. von Stade announced Monday, April 4. More than 140 members of the racing media will vote on the Hall of Fame, and the one winner in each category will be announced via teleconference on May 25.

Birdstone May Face a Flock in Lane's End

Marylou Whitney Stables' homebred Birdstone, winner of the grade I Champagne Stakes at Belmont last year, is the talk of Turfway leading up to their signature Kentucky Derby (gr. I) prep, Saturday's Lane's End Stakes (gr. II). However, the diminutive son of Grindstone hasn't exactly scared anyone off from the $500,000 race with as many as 14 others considering the race.

Checking Up On Florida's 3-year-olds

Trainer Bob Durso said he will start his undefeated Frisky Spider in either the Hutcheson or the Fountain of Youth, while Nick Zito is considering those races and allowances for Birdstone, Eurosilver, and The Cliff's Edge.

Silver Wagon Hits Derby Trail in Holy Bull

Silver Wagon will hit the trail toward Churchill Downs when he takes the gate against at field of 10 runners in Saturday's $100,000 Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park. The 15th running of the Holy Bull goes as the 10th event on an 11-race card with a first post time of 1 p.m.

Najran to Stand at Hopewell Farm

Najran, who earlier this year equaled an American record for a mile on dirt, will stand in 2004 at Rick Trontz' Hopewell Farm near Midway, Ky. He will stand for $7,500.

Eurosilver to Skip Breeders' Cup; Najran Retired

Buckram Oak Farm's Lane's End Futurity (gr. II) winner Eurosilver will be rested for a spring campaign and Phoenix Breeders' Cup (gr. III) winner Najran will be retired to the breeding shed trainer Nick Zito said Thursday.

Bird Town Edges Lady Tak in Exciting Acorn

Bird Town made the lead as they came out of the turn, and then held off a late charge from Lady Tak to win the Acorn Stakes (gr. I) Friday at Belmont Park. It was the second straight grade I win for Bird Town, who won the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) the day before the Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

Zito Vows to Continue Legal Fight

Trainer Nick Zito vowed to take a New York appeals court ruling Thursday, which upheld a 15-day suspension and $2,000 fine against him, to a higher court.

Zito Looks for Encore with Quatorze

Having won the 1996 Preakness with Louis Quatorze, trainer Nick Zito is looking for another big payday with a daughter of the renowned horse. Aly Quatorze, who won twice at Gulfstream this winter, will take on favored Chamrousse in the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II) on Friday.

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