Headlines for Wednesday, November 28, 2007

  • 2006 Texas champion 2-year-old filly Wrenice returns to the main track in the $50,000 Yellow Rose Stakes.

    Big Battles on Texas Champions Day

    Texas-breds will take the spotlight at Sam Houston Race Park Dec. 1 for the track's annual Texas Champion Day program, which features eight restricted stakes worth more than $500,000.

  • The Makers' Mark Mile, won this year by Kip Deville, will be upgraded to a Grade I for 2008.

    Graded Stakes Announced for 2008

    There will be three new grade I stakes in the United States in 2008 after a review by the American Graded Stakes Committee, but for the time being, the three Breeders' Cup World Championships races run for the first time in 2007 won't have a grade.

  • Chris Dragone

    Raffetto Out, Dragone in at MJC

    The Maryland Jockey Club announced Nov. 28 that president and chief operating officer Lou Raffetto Jr. will be leaving effective immediately to pursue other opportunities, and that Chris Dragone, a former senior vice president and general manager at the MJC, will take over his duties.

  • NYRA Creditors Can Vote on Plan

    A federal bankruptcy court judge has paved the way for the New York Racing Association to emerge from Chapter 11 protection pending the outcome of a vote by creditors.

  • Colonel John

    Tiz 2008 the Year for Colonel John?

    PORTER ON PEDIGREES by Alan Porter Following the Breeders' Cup World Championships each year, a major focus for race fans is the game of "spot the classic candidate," with bragging rights for the earliest identification of a future star. Colonel John was added to several lists when the youngster scored an impressive victory in a seven-furlong maiden at the Oak Tree-at-Santa Anita meet, and in all probability he has now moved several places up those lists following a decisive win in the Real Quiet Stakes at Hollywood Park, an effort which may have earned him a tilt at the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I).

  • Travis Dunkelberger won his 3,000 race at Laurel Park on Nov. 28.

    Dunkelberger Chalks Up 3,000th Win

    Jockey Travis Dunkelberger reached the 3,000-win plateau when he guided Casey Doon, his only mount on the card, to victory in the eighth race at Laurel Park Nov. 28. The 30-year-old became the 140th rider to reach the milestone, according to Equibase.

  • Host looks for victory in the Tropical Turf Handicap.

    Host Heads Tropical Turf Handicap

    Coming off a fifth-place finish in the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) and carrying significantly less weight than his 126-pound load in that race, Eugene Melnyk's Host looks for his first victory since May 26 when he competes in the $100,000 Tropical Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Calder Race Course Dec. 1.

  • A filly from the first crop of Group 1 winner STARCRAFT topped the second day of the Tattersalls December Foal Sale.

    Starcraft Filly Tops at Tattersalls

    A low-key second day of the Tattersalls December foal sale in Newmarket, England, Nov. 28 was topped by a filly from the first crop of Northern Hemisphere grade I winner Starcraft.

  • J'ray scored an easy win in the Feb. 24 Bayou Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Fair Grounds.

    My Charmer Up for Grabs

    Four-year-old fillies J'ray and Bayou's Lassie, both with graded stakes victories this year, and a group I winner from Chile are set for the $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT), an evenly matched 1 1/8-mile turf test for fillies and mares at Calder Race Course Dec. 1.

  • Pennsylvania Approves Steroids Ban

    Use of anabolic and androgenic steroids in Thoroughbreds will be prohibited effective April 1, 2008, the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission announced Nov. 28.

  • PNGI Won't Purchase Maryland Track

    Penn National Gaming Inc. said Nov. 28 it will not purchase Rosecroft Raceway, a Maryland harness track, in light of the fact the facility will not be eligible for slot machines under legislation passed by the Maryland General Assembly.

  • Dan Liebman
Editor-in-Chief

    Commentary: Rough Ride

    <i>By - Dan Liebman</i> - In some ways, jockeys are no different than coal miners, oil-rig workers, and police and firemen. There is inherent risk in their everyday job. But you can't think about the risk. To dwell on it would make the job impossible to perform.

  • Commentary: More is Less

    <i>By - Morton Cathro</i> - With the dust -- pardon, mud -- hardly settled from the first-ever two-day Breeders' Cup, the powers that be already are talking of further expanding racing's annual championship event.

  • Hall of Fame jockey Bill Hartack.

    Hall of Famer Bill Hartack Dead

    Bill Hartack, a Hall of Famer who rode five Kentucky Derby winners, was found dead Nov. 26 in a cabin near Freer, Texas.

  • Texas Panel OKs 2008 Breed Splits

    The Texas Racing Commission approved 2008 breed splits for horses and discussed the closure of one of the state's three Greyhound tracks during its Nov. 27 meeting.