State of Honor and Salty both put in five-furlong moves for trainer Mark Casse April 21 at Churchill Downs in preparation for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) May 6 and the Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) May 5.
- Bay Colt
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How did the Arkansas Derby impact the Derby Dozen? Was Classic Empire's performance enough to propel him back to the top.
Results released April 17 of National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) Top 3-Year-Old poll.
Instead of listening to outside noise, Mark Casse heeded what his champion charge was telling him. And when the rubber hit the road in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) April 15, the Hall of Fame finalist's instincts where proven dead-on accurate.
Classic Empire let his actions silence some of the doubts that had mounted since February when he surged past Conquest Mo Money and Malagacy in late stretch to capture the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
At this point, handicappers can be excused for being a trifle gun-shy when it comes to evaluating this crop of 3-year-olds, simply because the most consistent thing about them has been their inconsistency.
J. Keeler Johnson handicaps the Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
Thanks to lack of the clarity on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, Classic Empire could bring the hype full circle back to him should the 8-5 morning-line favorite prevail in the Arkansas Derby against 11 others.
How did the weekend stakes results impact the Derby Dozen? Did Blue Grass winner Irap make the cut?
John Oxley's reigning juvenile champion Classic Empire turned in his final serious drill in advance of his expected run in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1), breezing an easy half-mile in :50 at Winding Oaks Farm in Ocala the morning of April 8.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile champion Classic Empire worked April 3 at Winding Oaks Farm in Ocala, Fla. in preparation for his anticipated start in the Arkansas Derby (G1) April 15 at Oaklawn Park.
Following a strong five-furlong work March 28 at Winding Oaks Farm near Ocala, Fla., the connections of Classic Empire set the Arksansas Derby (G1) as the next target for last year's champion juvenile male.
Does the new addition to Derby Dozen prove that Steve Haskin is always dreaming?
Trainer Mark Casse plans to send Tepin to Kentucky for her first breeze of 2017 after the two-time champion grass mare refused to work March 27 at Palm Meadows Training Center.
Classic Empire follows in a long line of misbehavers amongst talented Thoroughbreds
Juvenile champion Classic Empire worked five furlongs the morning of March 22 in 1:01 2/5, but it wasn't the time that was important in the colt's first official breeze at Ocala's Winding Oaks Farm.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile champion Classic Empire did not break off in a scheduled workout March 19 at Palm Meadows Training Center, according to trainer Mark Casse.
Mastery's injury and weekend results impact the Derby Dozen, which features the return of some old faces.
Two people in the past month have asked me, “So, who is your Derby horse?” Yet I was as dumbfounded at the second asking as I’d been on the first. I have no idea who my Derby horse is. And for two good reasons.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile male champion Classic Empire is still targeting the April 8 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (G2) at Keeneland trainer Mark Casse confirmed, despite having a workout aborted March 3.
The battle for the individual favorite in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3 is expected to be tight between reigning 2-year-old champ Classic Empire, unbeaten rising stars McCraken and Mastery, along with Irish War Cry.
Juvenile champion Classic Empire will not start as expected in the Xpressbet.com Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) March 4 at Gulfstream Park, trainer Mark Casse said Feb. 19.
Days after John Oxley's champion Classic Empire finished a well-beaten third to Irish War Cry in the Holy Bull Stakes (G2), a foot abscess was discovered in the son of Pioneerof the Nile.
Experimental Free Handicap a great tool, needs a fresh look
The 3-year-old stakes results caused a shake up in the Derby Dozen. Who is the new number 1?
Trainer Graham Motion reported Feb. 5 that the undefeated Irish War Cry, who posted a mild upset as the 3 3/4-length winner of the Lambholm South Holy Bull (G2), will target Gulfstream Park's Triple Crown preps.
Nearly ten years to the day since his sire signaled his brilliance at Gulfstream Park, Irish War Cry showed he could follow in his father's footsteps as a force on the Triple Crown trail.
If you're thinking a pick three on the three Derby prep races—all scheduled within a 95-minute window—would surely stimulate some nationwide interest in the proceedings, you're right. And you're also out of luck, because that makes too much sense.
A second juvenile champion proved Pioneerof the Nile's depth as a sire.
Classic Empire, winner of the Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1), has been assigned the high weight of 126 pounds to top The Jockey Club Experimental Free Handicap for 2016.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile male champion Classic Empire makes his anticipated seasonal bow in the $350,000 Lambholm South Holy Bull Stakes (G2) against eight rivals at Gulfstream Park.
Some minor shuffling in the Derby Dozen, and plenty of new names amongst those Knocking On the Door.
John Oxley's champion 2-year-old Classic Empire edged unbeaten rising stars Mastery and McCraken to be the favored individual contender for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1).
Trainer Mark Casse declared 'all systems go' for Classic Empire to make his sophomore debut in the $350,000 Holy Bull Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park Feb. 4 after working an easy five furlongs with grade 1 winning-stablemate Pretty City Dancer.
"All Others," is expected to continue its traditional role as the overall betting choice in Pool 2 of Churchill Downs' 2017 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (KDFW), which opens its three-day run Jan. 27.
John C. Oxley's Classic Empire, the newly-minted champion 2-year-old of 2016, heads a roster of 418 3-year-olds made eligible during the early nomination phase to compete in the classic races of the 2017 American Triple Crown.
The first Derby Dozen of 2017 is here! Find out who is number one, and who else made the list
Classic Empire, a rangy, good-looking son of Pioneerof the Nile, came to hand under the tutelage of Mark and Norm Casse, and then left the rest of the juvenile division in arrears as he claimed the Eclipse Award for 2016’s top 2-year-old male.
After recording a five-furlong work from the gate in 1:00.75 at Palm Meadows Training Center Jan. 21, trainer Mark Casse doesn't see any reason why Classic Empire shouldn't be on track for the Feb. 4 Holy Bull Stakes (G2).
John Oxley will turn 80 Jan. 24 but the classic-winning owner feels like he's half that age. And, he's ready to spend that energy on a busy upcoming racing and personal schedule.
Classic Empire, the heavy favorite to be named 2-year-old champion male, took another significant step Jan. 16 toward possibly launching his 3-year-old campaign in the Feb. 4 Holy Bull Stakes (G2).
The Casse Racing shedrow got their first positive answer to some questions Jan. 8 when Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) winner Classic Empire and champion turf female Tepin each turned in their first moves of 2017.
What better way to bring color to winter than to envision roses in bloom on the first Saturday in May, scented green leaves adorning glasses of mint juleps, and the famed Twin Spires piercing a bright cerulean sky.
The quarantine situation at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots has already caused several disruptions among horsemen. Trainer Mark Casse is knocking wood that, so far, Valadorna remains among the unaffected.
To celebrate the arrival of another year and another Kentucky Derby season, let's take a look at J. Keeler Johnson's Kentucky Derby Top 10 list for 2017.
A start in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. II) at Keeneland is the first choice for Classic Empire's final Derby prep, but the race's downgraded status has prompted his connections to put other options back into the discussion.
The pari-mutuel field of "all other 3-year-olds" closed as the 6-5 favorite in Pool 1 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager (KDFW). Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) winner Classic Empire was the 6-1 second choice.
While the ever-popular "all others" is the morning-line favorite for the first of four 2017 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (KDFW) pools, Classic Empire is the favorite among individual choices in the wager that opens its four-day run Thanksgiving Day.
Boosted by the first day of the Conquest Stables dispersal and the historic sale of Uptown Twirl for $1,075,000, prices soared during the Nov. 14 seventh session of the Keeneland November breeding stock sale.
Tepin exited her runner-up effort in the Nov. 5 Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) behind Tourist well, according to Norman Casse and could make one more start in the $2.967 million Longines Hong Kong Mile (HK-I) on Dec. 11 at Sha Tin Racecourse.
|Trainer||Mark E. Casse|
|Jockey||Julien R. Leparoux|
|Owner||John C. Oxley|
|Breeder||Steven Nicholson & Brandi Nicholson|
|Classic Empire View Five-Cross Pedigree||Pioneerof the Nile||Empire Maker|
|Star of Goshen|
|Sambuca Classica||Cat Thief|
|In Her Glory|
|Sale / Hip||Type||Buyer||Consignor||Price|
|Yearling||John C. Oxley||Warrendale Sales, agent for Silver Fern Farm||$475,000|
|Irish War Cry|