Kentucky Downs’ opening day Kentucky Cup Turf Festival features four stakes events totaling $500,000, all of them to be contested on the European-style turf course. The 1 1/2-mile Kentucky Cup Turf is the finale and will go to post at 6:45 p.m. CDT.
Fans will be treated to a festival atmosphere on opening day. There will be live music, an infield Jumbotron showing the races, a favorite hat contest for both men and women, games and activities for children and plenty of festival foods and beverages. Kentucky Downs admission and parking are free.
"Top to bottom, Saturday's Kentucky Cup Turf Festival may be the best card in Kentucky Downs history," said Corey Johnsen, President of Kentucky Downs. "It has deep, competitive fields with top horses and jockeys. The races have something for everyone, with stakes races from six furlongs to a mile and a half and the return of steeplechase racing. Combined with the on track entertainment, it will be a true festival of racing.”
Owned by Chrysalis Stables and trained by Dallas Stewart, Silverfoot has contested the Kentucky Cup Turf twice, winning it back in 2005. The son of With Approval is a five-time grade III winner, his most recent one coming two starts back in the Stars and Stripes Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) July 4 at Arlington Park. It was his first trip to the winner’s circle since taking the Louisville Handicap (gr. IIIT) in May of 2006.
Robby Albarado, the second-ranked rider in the country this year, will get the mount on the 7-2 morning-line favorite, who is 10-1-2 from 32 lifetime starts and has earned nearly $900,000.
Installed as the second betting choice is 7-year-old gelding Always First. The English-bred son of Barathea will be making his first start since in more than a year when he took the Cape Henlopen Stakes Sept. 3, 2007 at Delaware Park. Tom Voss trains the bay, who won the grade II Sunset Breeders’ Cup Handicap back in 2005 at Hollywood Park. Corey Lanerie gets the mount.
Another gelding to consider is 7-year-old Stream of Gold. The Irish-bred son of Rainbow Quest was recently claimed by Michael Maker for $60,000 for Ken and Sarah Ramsey just prior to winning on the turf at Saratoga Aug. 27. Stream of Gold won the Mac Diarmida Handicap (gr. IIT) at Gulfstream Park in March and was third in the grade I Gulfstream Park Stakes before that. Victor Lebron will ride.
$200,000 Kentucky Cup Turf (gr. IIIT, Race 15, 6:45 p.m.), 3 & Up, 1 1/2 Miles (Turf)
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Rumor Has It (KY), 116, Eduardo Perez
2. Borobudur (KY), 116, Rosemary Homeister
3. Embossed (IRE), 116, Jon Court
4. Hapaheart (KY), 116, Julio Felix
5. Strait Mewsina (IRE), 116, Julio Garcia
6. Stream of Gold (IRE), 118, Victor Lebron
7. Always First (GB), 116, Corey Lanerie
8. Silverfoot (KY), 118, Robby Albarado
9. My Happiness (ARG), 116, Larry Sterling Jr.
10. Happy Digger (PA), 116, Chris Van Hassel