Headlines for Thursday, January 15, 2009

  • Mark Johnson

    Churchill Picks Johnson as New Announcer

    Mark Johnson, one of the most popular and acclaimed horse racing commentators in Britain, will bring his talents to America in 2009 as the new track announcer for Churchill Downs. The announcement was formally made by track officials during at news conference at the historic Louisville, Ky. racetrack Jan. 15.

  • Penn National Cancels Jan. 16 Program

    Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course has cancelled live racing for Jan. 16, as forecasts call for bitter cold temperatures accompanied by sub-zero wind chill.

  • Georgie Boy heads the grade I contingent in the Sunshine Millions Sprint.<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%3D2192290%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Sprint Highlights Santa Anita Millions

    A total of 126 horses were pre-entered for the Sunshine Millions, which will be run Jan. 24 at Santa Anita Park and Gulfstream Park, both owned by Magna Entertainment. The eight races feature Florida-breds against California-breds, with purses of $3.6 million.

  • 2008 Hutcheson Stakes winner Smooth Air will skip the Sunshine Millions Classic.<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%3D3215411%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Smooth Air to Skip Sunshine Millions

    Mount Joy Stable's homebred 4-year-old Smooth Air was prominent among the multiple graded-stakes winners under consideration for the $1 million OBS Sunshine Millions Classic at Gulfstream Park, but trainer Bennie Stutts Jr. will delay the colt's season debut.

  • Owner D. Morgan Firestone Dies

    D. Morgan Firestone, who won the 2007 Queen's Plate Stakes at Woodbine with homebred Mike Fox, died Jan. 13 at his home in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

  • That Handicapping Show: San Rafael

    Jason and Tom analyze the San Rafael Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita on January 17. The Wizard's Spotlight Play is Fair Grounds Race 10 on Saturday, January 17.

  • Splash of Vanilla at Keeneland Jan. 15.

    Palomino Filly Arrives at Keeneland

    Splash of Vanilla, believed to be the first Palomino Thoroughbred entered in a Keeneland auction, arrived on the sale grounds in Lexington Jan. 15 around noon and then settled down in Barn 24. The 2-year-old filly is scheduled to be offered as Hip. No. 2176 during the Jan. 17 final session of Keeneland's horses of all ages sale.

  • Game Face makes her 4-year-old debut in the First Lady Handicap.<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%3D3277567%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Game Face, Any Limit Top First Lady 'Cap

    Any Limit and Game Face may have graded stakes victories on their resumes, but both will have all they can handle when facing a talented group of fillies and mares in the $100,000 First Lady Handicap (gr. III) Jan. 18 at Gulfstream Park.

  • Turfway Park

    Turfway Cancels Racing Again

    With windchill temperatures again expected to plunge well below zero, Turfway Park has canceled live racing for Friday, Jan. 16. The track will remain open for simulcasting, with gates opening at 11:15 a.m.

  • Jim McKay

    Maryland Legislators Honor McKay

    As 2009 begins, three Maryland State legislators are joining forces to recognize a Maryland's sports visionary who passed away earlier this year.

  • David Mahan, Co-owned Funny Cide, Dies

    David Mahan, a member of Sackatoga Stable that raced 2003 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Funny Cide, died Jan. 14 of brain cancer in Waterbury, Conn.

  • On Call Program Receives Eclipse Award

    The National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form, and the National Turf Writers Association Jan. 15 announced that the veterinary On Call media-assistance program of the American Association of Equine Practitioners has been honored with the 2008 Special Eclipse Award.

  • Zenyatta winning the 2008 Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic <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%3D6447087%26%0D%0A%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Zenyatta BC Win Voted Moment of the Year

    The victory by Zenyatta in the Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic -- a win that culminated a perfect seven-for-seven 2008 campaign -- has been voted the 2008 National Thoroughbred Racing Association Moment of the Year.

  • Aqueduct, Beulah Cancel Jan. 16 Cards

    Because of an ominous forecast for bitter Arctic cold, compounded by strong winds, the New York Racing Association has decided to cancel its scheduled live race card at Aqueduct Jan. 16. Beulah Park in Ohio also canceled its Jan. 16 program because of frigid temperatures.

  • Indiana Horseman Randy Graf Dead

    Randy Graf, who was a board member of the Indiana Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, died Jan. 13.

  • Double Trouble won the 2008 Santa Maria <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%3D3547250%0D%0A%26ref%3Dstory">Order This Photo</a>

    Double Trouble Retired

    Grade I-winning distaffer Double Trouble has been retired from racing and is booked to Unbridled's Song.

  • Sligo Bay to Gardiner Farms

    Sligo Bay, Florida's fourth-leading second-crop sire in 2008, will be relocated to Gardiner Farms near Caledon East, Ontario, Canada.

  • Famous Mare Manny Dober Dead

    Manny Dober's racing career was chronicled in "The Complete Book of Thoroughbred Horse Racing."

  • KY Horsemen Circulating VLT Petition

    The Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association is circulating a petition asking the General Assembly to support legislation to authorize video lottery terminals at racetracks in the state.

  • That Handicapping Show: San Rafael

    Jason and Tom analyze the San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita on Saturday, January 17. The Wizard's Spotlight Play, Race 10 at Fair Grounds, is also on Saturday. Download a PDF of the "The Wizard's Spotlight Play" as well as free Brisnet Past Performances of the San Rafael.