Headlines for Saturday, March 3, 2012

  • Willyconker turns the tables to conquer Kilroe

    Unlike the Arcadia, where Willyconker rallied too late, the Irish-bred gelding enjoyed a better tactical position for new rider Joel Rosario. Jimmy Simms carved out splits of :23, :46 4/5 and 1:10 3/5, with Compari in close attendance, and Willyconker well placed in third. Jeranimo was anchored in midpack, but Mr. Commons was unhurried near the tail of the field.

  • Ron the Greek conquers Big 'Cap

    Wachtel Stable, Brous Stable and breeder Jack T. Hammer's Ron the Greek bided his time as 2-1 favorite Ultimate Eagle set suicidal fractions on the front end of Saturday's Grade 1, $750,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/bigcap12.pdf">Santa Anita Handicap</a> before putting in a furious rally down the center of the track to take the prestigious event by 3 1/2 lengths.

  • Eden's Moon survives objection for Las Virgenes win

    Eden's Moon was an easy winner of Saturday's $250,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/lasvirgenes12.pdf">Las Virgenes Stakes</a> at Santa Anita Park, but the talented bay miss had to survive an objection lodged by runner-up Reneesgotzip's trainer before she could give owner Kaleem Shah his first Grade 1 victory.

  • Willyconker holds off Mr. Commons to win the Frank E. Kilroe Mile.

    Willyconker Outlasts Mr. Commons in Kilroe

    Former claimer Willyconker became a grade I winner when he outlasted odds-on choice Mr. Commons in a thrilling finish to the $300,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile (gr. IT) at odds of 10-1 March 3 on the Santa Anita turf course.

  • On Fire Baby

    Triple Crown Possibles Work at Oaklawn

    Anita Cauley's On Fire Baby rolled through another fast workout the morning of March 3 at Oaklawn as the 3-year-old daughter of Smoke Glacken prepares for the March 11 Honeybee Stakes (gr. III).

  • Eden&#39;s Moon finishes strong to win the Las Virgenes Stakes.

    Eden's Moon Shines Bright in Las Virgenes

    Eden's Moon took a major step toward the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) when she drew away from 6-5 favorite Reneesgotzip in the homestretch to take the $250,000 Las Virgenes Stakes (gr. I) in her stakes debut March 3 at Santa Anita.

  • State of Play guts out Battaglia win

    A smart ride and grit at the wire made Team Valor International's State of Play best by a head in Saturday's $75,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/johnbattaglia12.pdf"> John Battaglia Memorial Stakes</a> at Turfway Park. The Graham Motion trainee ran 1 1/16 miles on the Polytrack in 1:46 2/5 to return to the winner's circle under jockey Victor Lebron.

  • Doubles Partner aces Canadian Turf off layoff

    Doubles Partner had not raced since his third-place finish in the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on Kentucky Derby Day. The Grade 2 veteran was dispatched as the 7-2 third choice, with Juddmonte's French Group 1 winner Mutual Trust garnering second choice status at 3-1.

  • Hansen rebounds with strong Gotham win

    Any suggestion that Hansen was a mere a one-dimensional speedball proved unfounded in Saturday's Grade 3, $400,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/gotham12.pdf">Gotham</a> at Aqueduct, as last year's juvenile colt champion overcame an outside post, a wide journey into the clubhouse turn, and having a little dirt kicked in his face for the first time to register an emphatic three-length victory in the 1 1/16-mile inner dirt event.

  • Calibrachoa hangs on over Caleb's Posse in Tom Fool

    Despite possessing a perfect four-for-four mark over Aqueduct's inner dirt leading into Saturday's Grade 3, $200,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/tomfool12.pdf">Tom Fool Handicap</a>, Mike Repole's Calibrachoa was let go at a nifty 7-2 going up against the likes of multiple Grade 1 winner Caleb's Posse and the imposing stakes newbie Emcee. Calibrachoa's loyal backers were rewarded when the five-year-old earned his second consecutive Tom Fool triumph, gutting out a neck victory over a fast-charging Caleb's Posse in the six-furlong contest over a tiring surface labeled good.

  • Pants On Fire rolls in his first start of 2012.

    Pants On Fire Makes Dominating Return

    Kelly Breen indicated early in the week that Pants On Fire was more than ready for his first start since late July, and the 4-year-old colt confirmed that March 3 at Gulfstream Park when winning by more than four lengths.

  • Hansen streaks home in the Gotham.&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%3D9822887%26ref%3Dstory&quot;&gt;Order This Photo&lt;/a&gt;

    Hansen Relaxes Early, Romps in Gotham

    The champion son of Tapit relaxed in the early going before using his brilliant speed en route to a convincing three-length victory in the $400,000 Gotham (gr. III) March 3 at Aqueduct.

  • Doubles Partner comes running late to win the Canadian Turf Stakes at Gulfstream Park.

    Doubles Partner Nets Comeback Win in Canadian

    Doubles Partner showed little effect from a 10-month layoff when he charged home late to register a three-quarters of a length victory in the $150,000 Canadian Turf Stakes (gr. IIIT) March 3 on the Gulfstream Park turf.

  • Pants on Fire sizzles in comeback; Dialed In fourth

    George and Lori Hall's Pants on Fire, who bled when ninth in the Kentucky Derby, was last seen finishing fifth in the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational on July 31. The Kelly Breen charge had been entered, and scratched, from a couple of other potential reappearances, most recently in the Grade 3 Mineshaft Handicap at Fair Grounds last Saturday. Despite the fact that the speedy colt figured to get the jump on the deep-closing Dialed In, Pants on Fire was sent off as the 5-2 second choice.

  • Promising Outlook for Barretts March Sale

    The synergy of the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) weekend coupled with the kick-off of the national schedule of 2-year-old auctions positions the Barretts March sale well for a good showing.

  • It&#39;s Tricky takes the Top Flight at Aqueduct under Ramon Dominguez.&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%3D9822819%26ref%3Dstory&quot;&gt;Order This Photo&lt;/a&gt;

    It's Tricky Returns a Winner in Top Flight

    Godolphin Racing's two-time grade I winner It's Tricky made her season debut successful in the Top Flight Handicap (gr. II) when she took over from pacesetter Love and Pride at the top of the lane and cruised to victory.

  • It's Tricky takes Top Flight in return

    It's Tricky broke a three-race streak of seconds on Saturday when making her return in the Grade 2, $196,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/topflight12.pdf">Top Flight Handicap</a> at Aqueduct. The Godolphin colorbearer had to work over the tiring track to get the 2 3/4-length victory in her first race since running second in the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic last November, but gutted out the win under jockey Ramon Dominguez as the near 2-5 favorite.

  • Scatman, On Fire Baby ready for Oaklawn engagements

    Grade 3 Southwest Stakes runner-up Scatman, preparing for the Grade 2, $500,000 Rebel Stakes on March 17, breezed five furlongs in 1:01 3/5 over the fast track at Oaklawn Park Saturday. Michael Lauer instructed jockey Luis Quinonez to work the colt between 1:01 and 1:02, and the veteran rider executed it perfectly.

  • Field Slight Favorite Over Union Rags in KDFW

    Union Rags attracted strong support during first of three days of betting in the second pool of Churchill Downs' 2012 Kentucky Derby Future Wager, but the mutuel field ended the day as a narrow favorite March 2.