First Flight, Knickerbocker at Aqueduct

(from Aqueduct report)
Aqueduct offers up a pair of graded stakes, the First Flight Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares at seven furlongs and the 1 1/8-mile Knickerbocker Handicap (gr. IIT) on the turf to sweeten its abbreviated Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships day live card.

In the $150,000 First Flight, Passing Shot returns to the site of her Bed O' Roses Breeders' Cup (gr. III) upset in April for trainer H. Allen Jerkens. Jerkens will of course, be in Texas saddling Test and Alabama (both gr. I) winner Society Selection in the Distaff (gr. I) along with longshot Bowman's Band in the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) Saturday.

Jerkens has won the First Flight four times, most recently taking the 2001 and 2002 editions with Shine Again.

Passing Shot will be making her first start off a four-month layoff. She finished third behind Sightseek and Breeders' Cup Distaff-bound Storm Flag Flying in Belmont's Ogden Phipps Handicap (gr. I) in her last start on June 19. Passing Shot is a three-time winner from five starts at Aqueduct.

Bending Strings defeated 3-year-old fillies in the Safely Kept Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Pimlico Oct. 2. She defeated Smokey Glacken, the even-money favorite in the six-furlong race, by 2 1/2 lengths. Smokey Glacken led to the eighth pole before giving way.

Schedule will be shipping into town off a 7 ½-length victory in the Meadowlands' Miss Liberty for trainer Alan Goldberg. A daughter of Brian's Time, Schedule can join Number, Missy's Mirage, Twist Afleet, Thunder Achiever, Dixie Flag, Country Hideaway and Randaroo as a 3-year-old winner of the First Flight.

Aqueduct has programmed a five-race live card around the Breeders' Cup simulcast. It begins at 11 a.m. ET, with the First Flight at 12:25 p.m. and the Knickerbocker 30 minutes later.

$150,000 First Flight Handicap (gr. II), fillies & mares 3 & up, 7 furlongs
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Smokey Glacken (KY), 15, Joe Bravo
2. Sensibly Chic (NY), 112, Jose L. Espinoza
3. Hidden Ransom (VA), 112, Pablo Fragoso
4. Passing Shot (KY), 118, Aaron T. Gryder
5. Bending Strings (KY), 116, Shaun Bridgmohan
6. Schedule (GB), 113, Stewart Elliott

The multiple grade-I winning Denon may go off the favorite in Saturday's second stake, the $150,000 Knickerbocker Handicap.

Trained by Hall of Famer Bobby Frankel, who may saddle a pair of odds-on horses in the Breeders' Cup (Midas Eyes in the Sprint and Ghostzapper in the Classic), Denon will be making his Aqueduct debut as he attempts to inch closer to the $2 million earnings mark. Frankel won the Knickerbocker three years ago with Sumitas.

Denon, the 119-pound high weight in a field of 10, will be making his second start off a near 10-month layoff in the Knickerbocker after running fifth as the 3-2 favorite in the Sycamore Breeders' Cup (gr. IIIT) Oct. 9 at Keeneland.

Dr. Kashnikow, a 7-year-old who has banked nearly $740,000, will try to win back-to-back stakes after pulling off a 15-1 upset in the Cliff Hanger (gr. IIIT) at the Meadowlands.

$150,000 Knickerbocker Handicap (gr. IIT), 3 & up, 1 1/8 miles (turf)
1. Caesarion (IRE), 114, Jorge F. Chavez
2. Hotstufanthensome (KY), 114, Julian Pimentel
3. Evening Attire (KY), 114, Jose L. Espinoza
4. Dr. Kashnikow (ON), 116, Jean-Luc Samyn
5. L'Oiseau d'Argent (KY), 115, Aaron T. Gryder
6. Host (CHI), 115, Christopher P. DeCarlo
7. Balestrini (IRE), 115, G. F. Almeida
8. Mr. Light (ARG), 113, Joe Bravo
9. Sailaway (KY), 112, Shaun Bridgmohan
10. Denon (KY), 119, Pablo Fragoso