Cigar Mile Highlights Aqueduct's Holidayfest Weekend

Edited press release from New York Racing Association
Six stakes races, with purses totaling more than $1 million, will be featured during Aqueduct's annual Holidayfest Weekend, which runs from Thanksgiving Day, Thursday through Sunday. The weekend is the highlight of the Aqueduct fall meeting.

On Thanksgiving Day, racing begins early with a special post time of 11 a.m. The last of 10 live races will go off at about 3 p.m. The feature race on Thanksgiving Day is the 87th Running of the grade II, $100,000-added Fall Highweight Handicap for three-year-olds and up at six furlongs, annually one of New York's more popular events.

The Fall Highweight field consists of: 1. Mister Tricky, Aaron Gryder, 130; 2. Oro de Mexico, Heberto Castillo Jr., 130; 3. Brutally Frank, Shaun Bridgmohan, 138; 4. Lumberman, Norberto Arroyo Jr., 130; 5. Kashatreya, Octavio Vergara, 131; 6. Brushed On, Robbie Davis, 129; 7. Go To The Ink, Mike Smith, 128; 8. Late Carson, John Velazquez, 133; 9. Pooska Hill, Jose Espinoza, 129; and 10. Exciting Story, Jorge Chavez, 131.

Racing continues on Friday with the 61st Running of the grade II, $150,000 Delta Air Lines Top Flight Handicap for fillies and mares at one mile as the featured attraction. Probables include Biogio's Rose, Country Hideaway, Critical Eye and Too Too Divine. Forever Cindy, Go to the Ink and Superduper Miss are questionable.

Three stakes races will be on Saturday, highlighted by the 12th running of the grade I, $350,000 Cigar Mile Handicap for three-year-olds and up, as the marquee race of the fall meeting. Formerly run as the NYRA Mile, this race was renamed three years ago for the two-time Horse of the Year who won the 1994 edition. Other past winners include Forty Niner, Rubiano, Ibero, Gold Fever, and Affirmed Success. Probables include: Affirmed Success, Bevo, El Corredor, Forty One Carats, Golden Missile, Left Bank, More Than Ready, One Way Love and Peeping Tom. Chasin' Wimmin is questionable.

Two-year-olds will compete in a pair supporting stakes, both of which are at nine furlongs. The colts and geldings will run in the 87th Running of the grade II, $200,000 Remsen. Historically, the Remsen has served as a good indicator of Kentucky Derby success, as is evident in the fact that both the 1993 and 1994 winners, Go for Gin and Thunder Gulch, respectively, took the "Run for the Roses" the following May. Probables include: Airy Hill, Buckle Down Ben, Dayton Flyer, Easing Along, Griffinite, Hero's Tribute or Holiday Thunder, and Ommadon. Dollar Bill, Gift of the Eagle, Max's Friend, Meetyouatthebrig and Windsor Castle are questionable.

Juvenile fillies will square off in the grade II, $200,000 Demoiselle, also at nine furlongs. Probables include: Celtic Melody, Company Storm, My Lady Avie, Sweep Dreams, Twining Star and Two Item Limit. Cindy's Hero, Daisy Dukes, Dream Wish, Kingsland and Nasty Storm are questionable.

The weekend action concludes on Sunday, with the sixth running of the $75,000-added Huntington for two-year-olds at six furlongs as the feature. Probables include: American Century, Fistfite, Hunt Gold, Lyle Lovesit, Sea of Green, Solitary Vision, Songandaprayer and The Goo. Big League, Firstround KO, and Native Heir are questionable.