Vic Zast, a racetrack executive, businessman, turf writer, and ardent racing fan, died Aug. 3. Zast, who had been a regular contributor to The Blood-Horse and authored the "Saratoga Diary" blog at Bloodhorse.com, was 69.
Despite an increase in racing days during the first six months of this year, total pari-mutuel handle at Churchill Downs, Inc.-owned tracks fell 9.7%, from $1.06 billion in 2013, to $958.3 million.
Churchill Downs Inc. reported July 30 that the track and casino company had record second quarter net revenues of $303.7 million, up 7% over the $283.6 million figure for the same period a year ago.
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. against the New York State Gaming Commission, the Association of Racing Commissioners International, and two New York regulators.
Keeneland Association is apparently delaying its plans to offer historical racing at a new 40,000-square foot facility that was scheduled to open in July 2015.
George and Lori Hall's Pants On Fire makes his seasonal debut July 27 in the Monmouth Cup Stakes (gr. II) as the 6-year-old son of Jump Start seeks to repeat his victory in the 2013 edition.
Grade I winner Dance With Fate was euthanized due to a serious injury sustained July 24 when he bolted and crashed into a fence while on the track at Del Mar prepping for the upcoming San Diego Handicap (gr. II).
West Point Thoroughbreds' Kentucky Derby runner-up Commanding Curve could make his first start since his ninth-place finish in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) in the July 25 Curlin Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.
Better Lucky, last by more than a dozen lengths after a half-mile, came flying down the stretch to catch Grace Hall at the finish to win the $100,000 Shine Again Stakes by a head at Saratoga Race Course July 21.
Stakes winners Favorite Tale and Choctaw Chuck are the 121-pound co-highweights among seven 3-year-olds entered for the $100,000 Quick Call Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.
Repole Stable's Stopchargingmaria took over rounding the far turn and drew off to an impressive five-length victory over Unbridled Forever in the TVG Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course July 20.
Cudney Stables homebred Lafontaine, the longest shot in a six-horse field at 18-1, charged late to overtake pacesetter Heart to Heart en route to a half-length win in the $119,710 Toronto Cup over the Woodbine turf July 20.
A former clocker at Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course has entered a plea agreement and is cooperating with prosecutors in connection with charges that he and two others defrauded the public.
The Darley Irish Oaks (Ire-I) took on a new look after Investec Oaks (Eng-I) winner Taghrooda was not included among the 11 fillies in the field when runners were declared the morning of July 17.
Bedford Land, a 2-year-old daughter of Speightstown, was purchased by Three Chimneys Farm for $1,075,000 to top the July 14 Fasig-Tipton summer selected horses of racing age sale in Lexington.
- By Ron Mitchell
Phil Hronec of Winding Oaks Farm discusses dispersal of Melnyk Racing Stables. watch video
Hillaby, a 4-year-old daughter of Distorted Humor, was purchased by Stonestreet Stables for $500,000 to jump start the horses of racing age portion of the Fasig-Tipton July sale July 14.
Alfredo Lichoa of Northwest Stud discusses his purchase of the $550,000 Cowboy Cal colt at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July Sale. watch video
Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens is taking another break from the saddle to undergo knee replacement surgery, but the 51-year-old rider plans to return to competition again.
A panel discussion during the first day of the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit yielded no consensus on possible reasons for declines in average starts per horse and average field sizes over the past five decades.
Trainer of Queen's Plate winner Lexie Lou discusses why it is easier for fillies to win the Canadian classic than it is for fillies to win the Kentucky Derby. Listen Now
Racing the dates previously held by now-closed Hollywood Park, Santa Anita Park reported average daily all-sources handle of $9.92 million and average daily attendance of 6,970 for the inaugural 38-day spring meet.
Benefiting from a good jump out of the gate at the top of the downhill turf track at Santa Anita Park, Big Kick never looked back over the course of 1 3/4 miles as he rolled to victory in the San Juan Capistrano.
Taking advantage of a torrid pace, Street Story came from well off the pace for a 1 3/4-length triumph over Miss Behaviour in the $150,000 Victory Ride Stakes at Belmont Park June 29.
Multiple stakes winners Rovenna and Clenor top a field of 11 3-year-old fillies entered for the June 28 Senorita Stakes (gr. IIIT), among the Santa Anita Park summer stakes previously run at the closed Betfair Hollywood Park.
Mutliple grade II winner Stormy Lucy is the 124-pound highweight in the June 28 Royal Heroine Stakes (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita Park that is expected to mark the U.S. debut of New Zealand champion Habibi.
Game On Dude, who topped the first edition of the Longines World's Best Racehorse Rankings for 2014, heads the field for the 75th renewal of the Gold Cup at Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) June 28 at Santa Anita Park.
British Horse Racing Authority stewards have suspended jockey Joseph O'Brien nine days and fined him for using his whip more than the permitted number of times during two races June 19 at Royal Ascot.
Breeders' Cup Ltd. announced June 24 that the 2015 World Championships will be held Oct. 30-31 at Keeneland Racecourse in Lexington, will return to Santa Anita Park in 2016, and will be held at Del Mar in 2017.
Juan Vazquez, a leading trainer at Delaware Park, was charged with simple assault following an incident involving jockey Trevor McCarthy at the track June 23.
New York Racing Association steward Braulio Baeza Jr. has imposed a $2,500 fine on trainer Mike Maker in connection with General a Rod being a late arrival at the Belmont Stakes pre-race test barn June 7.
Lexie Lou outran stablemate Wild Catomine to score an impressive victory in the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks Presented by Budweiser at Woodbine June 15, as 1-2 favorite Paladin Bay finished off the board in the 1 1/8-mile test.
Back on Polytrack after a 10th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands, We Miss Artie took charge in upper stretch and held off a tenacious Majestic Sunset to win the $150,000 Plate Trial Stakes.
When the Irish-based Goffs sales company conducts its London, England sale in association with QIPCO June 16, the offerings will include the first-ever foal by Frankel to be offered at public auction.
Prominent U.S. and Canadian owner-breeder Eugene Melnyk announced June 11 his retirement from the sport of horse racing, with his racing and breeding stock to be dispersed July 14 at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky.
The Texas Racing Commission has approved the publication for public comment the proposed rules for historical race wagering, also known as Instant Racing, at tracks in that state that conduct live racing.
The last foal of the 2014 breeding season at Coolmore Ireland was foaled June 1 when 23-year-old Mariah's Storm produced her 13th live foal--a filly by perennial European champion sire Galileo.
An official with the New York Racing Association said no rules were apparently broken June 7 when General a Rod was a late arrival to the pre-race testing barn for the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
With a victory by Palace Malice in the Metropolitan Handicap and Commissioner's Belmont Stakes runner-up, one of three near-misses June 7, trainer Todd Pletcher said he was "about a half-length away from a career day."
Less than 12 hours after saddling Tonalist to an upset victory in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), trainer Christophe Clement was in his usual spot on the apron at the New York track at 5:30 a.m. June 8, overseeing workouts.
Coffee Clique and jockey Javier Castellano won a nose bob over longshot Strathnaver for an upset victory in the Longines Just a Game Stakes (gr. IT) on the June 7 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) undercard at Belmont Park.
With California Chrome going for the Triple Crown and a forecast of abundant sunshine, low humidity, and temperatures in the high 70s, the crowed at Belmont Park began forming early for the June 7 Belmont Stakes.
- By Ron Mitchell
Trainer Todd Pletcher has two chances to win his third Belmont Stakes. Watch Video
Trainer Dale Romans, on Medal Count's Belmont bid in the 2014 Belmont Stakes. Watch Video
Beholder, with trainer Richard Mandella, schools in paddock at Belmont Park on June 6, 2014. watch video
California Chrome, going to the track after visiting the paddock June 6. watch video
Kid Cruz, who was under consideration for a possible start in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), tops the field of nine 3-year-olds entered in the $150,000 Easy Goer Stakes on the Belmont Park June 7 undercard.
Ron Sanchez of Rontos Stable explains why Social Inclusion will not run in Belmont Stakes. watch video
Dads Caps, a front-running sprint specialist who won the April 5 Carter Handicap (gr. I), tops the nine-horse field of 4-year-olds and up entered for the $250,000 True North Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park June 6.
Triple Crown hopeful California Chrome looked sharp in his final workout May 31 in preparation for the upcoming Belmont Stakes (gr. I), breezing a half-mile in a quick :47.69 at Belmont Park.
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