Headlines for Tuesday, April 29, 2008

  • Bennie Stutts, trainer of Smooth Air

    Stutts a Hit at Derby Trainers' Dinner

    An interview with Benny Stutts Jr. was the highlight of the annual Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners' and Breeders' Association's Derby trainers' dinner, as the 70-year-old trainer expressed his delight at preparing to saddle his first Kentucky Derby starter - Mount Joy Stables' Smooth Air.

  • Adriano won't have his third birthday until more than 2 weeks after the Derby.<br><a target="blank" href="http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/photo-store?ref=http%3A%2F%2Fpictopia.com%2Fperl%2Fgal%3Fprovider_id%3D368%26ptp_photo_id%3D4335621%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Foaling Dates of Derby Contenders

    Poet T.S. Eliot labeled April "cruelest month," but it is not a bad month on stud farms for foaling winners of the Kentucky Derby (gr. I). In fact, over the last eight years, April foals have won three runnings of the Derby. February, the month that gives us both Groundhog Day and Presidents Day despite being the shortest month of the year, has been responsible for five winners.

  • Larry Jones

    Ringing in the Derby With Larry Jones

    Should Eight Belles run on Saturday, she will provide trainer Larry Jones with his second Kentucky Derby (gr. I) starter. Last year he conditioned Hard Spun, who ran a credible second behind Street Sense and was also owned by Rick Porter's Fox Hill Farms.

  • Proud Spell will be the likely Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) post time favorite if stablemate Eight Belles scratches in favor of the Derby.

    Jones Girls Rule Kentucky Oaks Line-Up

    Trainer Larry Jones took it as a sign of better things to come when his Eight Belles drew the outside 12 post for the May 2 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I), but all was not lost for the Kentucky-born trainer when his Proud Spell drew post 8 in the 1 1/8-mile race for the lilies on the first Friday in May.

  • HRTV's Target Louisville - 4/29 (Video)

    HRTV's originally produced show on the Derby contenders. Big Brown arrives, Tale of Ekati works, Big Brown and Recapturetheglory gallop, a look at the Oaks entries, and an interview with Nick Zito - his thoughts on his two Derby contenders and the rest of the field.

  • HRTV Adds Belmont, Arlington to Schedule

    HorseRacing TV will add two prominent racetracks to its programming schedule when Belmont and Arlington parks begin their annual spring/summer meetings this week.

  • Second Group of Tracks Has No NYRA Deal

    Another group of racetracks won't be importing the signal from Belmont Park beginning April 30 because they collectively have failed to strike a deal on signal rates with the New York Racing Association.

  • Halo Najib to make his turf debut in the Crown Royal American Turf May 2.

    Halo Najib Among 11 for American Turf S.

    Zayat Stables' Halo Najib appears to be on the outside looking in as far as making the 2008 Kentucky Derby field. Barring a last-minute defection, he's more likely to make his turf debut in the $150,000 Crown Royal American Turf (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs May 2, the day before the Derby.

  • Passage of Florida Slot Bills in Doubt

    As the Florida legislature prepares to end its annual session May 2, chances appear very slim that it will pass either of two slot machine bills being sought by the Thoroughbred industry.

  • Sunshine Millions Distaff will look to return to the Winner's Circle in the Louisville Stakes.<br><a target="blank" href="http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/photo-store?ref=http%3A%2F%2Fpictopia.com%2Fperl%2Fgal%3Fprovider_id%3D368%26ptp_photo_id%3D3398698%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Ginger Punch Tops Louisville Field

    Frank Stronach's 5-year-old Ginger Punch heads a field packed with talent in the $300,000 Louisville Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) day May 2. Facing the Eclipse Award winner will be grade I winner Lear's Princess, grade II winner Kettleoneup, and blacktype winner Unforgotten.

  • Storm Cat, shown, is the most famous of Terlingua's 11 foals.

    Terlingua, Storm Cat's Dam, Dead

    Terlingua, who made a name for herself as one of the fastest fillies of her generation and as the dam of leading sire Storm Cat, was euthanized April 29 because of complications from the infirmities of old age at the Young family's Overbrook Farm near Lexington.

  • Chelokee, who won the Northern Dancer at Churchill Downs on June 16, 2008, takes on 6 in the Alysheba Stakes May 2.

    Chelokee Continues Comeback in Alysheba

    Centennial Farms' Chelokee, on the Triple Crown trail a year ago, makes his return to graded stakes action May 2 when he faces six older horses in the $150,000 Alysheba Stakes (gr. III) on the dirt at Churchill Downs.

  • Russell Baze earned his unprecedented 12th overall Isaac Murphy Award from the National Turf Writers Association.

    Baze Earns 12th Isaac Murphy Award

    Racing Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze, North America's all-time leading rider who passed the 10,000-win plateau Feb. 1, earned his unprecedented 12th overall Isaac Murphy Award from the National Turf Writers Association for finishing the 2007 season with the highest winning percentage of any North American jockey.

  • Recapturetheglory with owner Ronnie Lamarque, left, and trainer Louie Roussel

    Daily Derby Notes: April 29

    Tale of Ekati breezes, Big Brown checks out Churchill Downs, Pletcher's pair arrive April 30, Recapturetheglory gallops.

  • Breeder/Owner Lewis L. Tuck Dead

    Lewis L. "Lou" Tuck, whose Go West Young Man was one of California's top runners in 1980, died April 13 in Littleton, Colo.

  • Big Brown, half brother to My Chestnut Girl.

    Lacy's Tickets Have Derby Connections

    When Tony Lacy was signing sale tickets for yearlings last year, the Kentucky-based bloodstock agent and Four Star Sales consultant didn't know that two of the horses would distinguish themselves by having siblings running in this year's Kentucky Presented By Yum Brands (gr. I).

  • Cowboy Cal Races to Help Fight Cancer

    Janice and Robert McNair of Stonerside Stable announced April 29 that any earnings by their homebred Cowboy Cal in the May 3 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) will be donated to the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, in memory of John Long.

  • Cowboy Cal's Derby Earnings Special

    Janice and Robert McNair, owners of Stonerside Stable, announced that any earnings by their homebred Cowboy Cal in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) will be donated to the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

  • Big Brown headed to the track at Churchill Downs April 29.

    Dutrow Remains Confident

    Ten years ago Rick Dutrow was living in a tack room at Aqueduct, determined to make it on his own in the racing industry. On the morning of April 28, he faced a room full of media members intent on covering the progress of his contender for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).

  • Churchill Downs

    ADW Impact on Churchill Downs Unclear

    It's difficult to gauge the immediate effect of the ongoing dispute with Kentucky horsemen on the Churchill Downs' spring meet, as handle on racing from the opening weekend at the Louisville track was down only slightly from 2007, according to one data source.

  • NY Mandates Independent Betting Monitor

    The New York State Racing and Wagering Board approved a regulation April 28 requiring tote companies to provide for independent monitoring of all pari-mutuel pools effective Jan. 1, 2009. Roughly $3 billion -- one-fifth of total handle in the United States -- will fall under the new monitoring system.

  • Bennie Stutts talks with the media on the Churchill Downs backside.

    Strutting with Stutts

    For 70-year-old trainer Bennie Stutts Jr., coming to the May 3 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) with his first starter, Smooth Air, is a bit like getting the chance to play in another major sporting event.

  • Louie Roussel III at Churchill Downs during Derby Week.

    Recapturing Louie Roussel

    As trainer Louie Roussel III feeds his 3-year-old bay colt a mint to keep him quiet during a morning bath in the week leading up to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), it isn't so hard to imagine it is Risen Star being rinsed down, not the appropriately named Recapturetheglory.

  • Alex Waldrop was one of several speakers at the Kentucky International Equine Summit in Lexington April 28.

    Industry Growth Said to Need Cooperation

    Because lack of growth appears to be one of the many issues plaguing the horse industry, the Kentucky International Equine Summit in Lexington hosted an April 28 seminar to tackle the topic and seek solutions.

  • Dan Liebman, Editor-in-chief

    Commentary: Dear John

    <i> by Dan Liebman </i> - One night during the 2007 Keeneland November sale, Eoin Harty was enjoying a leisurely dinner when the topic turned to horses, in particular those in his Southern California stable.

  • Commentary: Farewell to the Meadows

    <i> by Morton Cathro </i> - Bay Meadows, California's pioneering racetrack, has been this aging fan's delight for nearly my entire lifetime. Now, barring an unlikely last-minute reprieve, it is marching inexorably toward May 11, the final day of its final meeting.

  • Tale of Ekati worked at Churchill Downs April 29.

    Works for Tale of Ekati, Halo Najib

    With four days to go to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), only two classic contenders worked at Churchill Downs on the morning of Tuesday, April 29.

  • Inside Track: Picture Perfect

    <i> By Terry Conway</i> - When Shawn Faust wanted to enhance his portrait studies in oils, the equine artist enrolled in a class with Daniel Greene, one of America's foremost artists in oils and pastels.

  • CDI president Robert L. Evans

    Evans: Internet and ADW Key to Growth

    Churchill Downs Inc. has invested $100 million in advance deposit wagering for a reason: The company believes it's the major growth channel for pari-mutuel wagering, as well as a means to drive traffic to the racetrack, CDI president and chief executive officer Bob Evans said.

  • Vaders Granted Stay of PA Revocation

    A Commonwealth Court in Pennsylvania has granted Jayne Vaders, last year's leading trainer at Philadelphia Park Casino & Racetrack, a stay of her indefinite license revocation, which was handed down by the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission last May.

  • Absolutely Cindy at Churchill Downs.&lt;br&gt;&lt;a target=&quot;blank&quot; href=&quot;http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/photo-store?ref=http%3A%2F%2Fpictopia.com%2Fperl%2Fgal%3Fprovider_id%3D368%26ptp_photo_id%3D4335630%26ref%3Dstory&quot;&gt;Order This Photo&lt;/a&gt;

    Daily Oaks Notes: April 28

    Country Star to ship to Churchill Wednesday; Rasierra may supplement; Elusive Lady joins Oaks cast.

  • Morning Line: Super Tuesday

    Trainer Nick Zito is holding court with a ring of media members outside his barn. The two-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer has two starters for Saturday's running: Cool Coal Man and Anak Naktal. Zito is talking about the subject of the year: synthetic surfaces. We have a feeling he's not a big fan.

  • Target Louisville 4/29

    Big Brown arrives, Tale of Ekati works, Big Brown and Recapturetheglory gallop, a look at the Oaks entries, and an interview with Nick Zito - his thoughts on his two Derby contenders and the rest of the field.