by Anne Peters
Female lines that continue to produce top-class runners.
by Anne Peters
Able to milk an easy lead for jockey Elvis Trujillo, Closing Range spurted away from favorites Ciao Bella and Havant at the head of the lane and went on to post a 19-1 upset in the $100,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIIT).
Havant and Clarinet head a field of eight fillies and mares entered for the $100,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Calder Race Course & Casino Nov. 30, but the lightly raced sophomore Ciao Bella could make an impact.
Favored Changing Skies pounced on Casablanca Smile in the stretch and proved a handy 3 3/4-length winner of the $100,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIIT) on the turf at Calder Casino and Race Course Jan. 2.
Green Hills Farm's Chilean-bred Casablanca Smile will be among the favorites in a field of 11 fillies and mares set to launch their 2011 seasons in the $100,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIIT) Jan. 2 at Calder.
West Point Thoroughbreds and partners' Justwhistledixie, the leading 3-year-old filly to emerge at Gulfstream Park last winter, returns to South Florida for the Sabin Stakes (gr. III) Feb. 27
Lady Shakespeare and Long Approach are among the most accomplished turf stakes performers and the likely favorites in a full field of 12 entered in the $125,000 Suwannee River Stakes (gr. III) Feb. 6 at Gulfstream.
Voting for the 2009 older female category has been revised to reverse an error made by a voter who mistakenly voted for Icon Project instead of Zenyatta.
On paper, it seems as though multiple graded stakes winner Acoma is moving in the wrong direction. The 4-year-old daughter of Empire Maker has been way off her game in her last two starts, finishing sixth and ninth, respectively, in the July 19 Delaware Handicap (gr. II) and Oct. 10 First Lady (gr. IT) at Keeneland.
In charge most of the way for jockey Javier Castellano, odds-on choice Criticism scored an authoritative repeat victory in the $150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIIT) over a yielding turf course at cloudy Aqueduct in her final start for Darley Stable Nov. 1.
Darley Stable's Criticism, a three-time graded stakes winner this year, holds a big edge over six contenders in the $150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIIT), the Nov. 1 feature at Aqueduct.
Andrew Rosen announced Oct. 23 that his 4-year-old filly Icon Project, winner of the 2009 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I), has been retired due to a tendon injury.
Pure Clan overtook Criticism in the final furlong to register a convincing win in the $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational (gr. IT) at foggy, soggy Belmont Park Oct. 3.
Dynaforce wouldn't mind a little cut in the ground when she defends her crown in the $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational (gr. IT) over Belmont Park's inner turf course Oct. 3.
Now that Rachel Alexandra is through for the year, it is time for Zenyatta, the defending Queen of all Turfdom, to take center stage, and her presence will be a welcome sight in a year where the Breeders' Cup has gone a bit haywire.
Looking at Icon Project's last three starts, her only races on dirt in an 11-race career, one can only wonder just how special this 4-year-old daughter of Empire Maker is.
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
It seems 2009 would be a year for filly phenoms, and they're all the result of young, distance-loving sires.
Favored Icon Project, ridden by Julien Leparoux, demolished her rivals with a Rachel Alexandra-type performance Aug. 30 in the $400,000 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race course.
Multiple graded stakes winner Unbridled Belle tops a trio of charges from the barn of Todd Pletcher in the $400,000 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I), Saratoga's Aug. 30 headliner.
Swift Temper dictated the pace for jockey Alan Garcia and kicked away in the stretch to post a surprisingly easy 2 1/4-length upset in the $1-million Delaware Handicap (gr. II) July 19 at Delaware Park.
Team Valor International's Unbridled Belle has been simply terrific in her career at Delaware Park, winning five of seven starts at the track including the 2007 Delaware Handicap (gr. II). On July 19, the 6-year-old mare will try to continue her domination when she takes on six rivals in the $1 million event.
Heavy rain forced the $245,000 New York Stakes (gr. IIT) off the turf and that was just fine with Star Crown Stable's Icon Project, who took over from tiring favorite Criticism at the top of the lane and sailed to a 13 1/4-length victory June 20 on the slop at Belmont Park.
Jason, Tom, and the Wizard analyze the New York Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park on June 20. Watch Video
Darley Stable's homebred Criticism has been on quite a roll, winning four of her last five, all in graded stakes. Backseat Rhythm and Dynaforce, both grade I winners a year ago, are both coming off unplaced efforts last out. Will the hot horse continue her winning ways, will the proven grade I winners return to form, or will one of the other capable starters break through?
Odds-on favorite Criticism notched her fourth graded stakes victory in a little more than six months, taking a short field of fillies and mares wire-to-wire in the $150,000 Sheepshead Bay Stakes (gr. IIT) May 23 on the Belmont Park turf.
|Horse||Trainer||Breeder / Owner|
|Astrologie (FR)||Christophe Clement||
|Awesome Moment||Jorge E. Romero||
|Criticism (GB)||Thomas Albertrani||
|Icon Project||Martin D. Wolfson||
|Long Approach||Jonathan E. Sheppard||
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