If weights are any indication, the Sept. 18 Jerome Handicap (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Belmont Park figures to be wide open.
Claiborne Farm's homebred Stroll tops a field of five for the 19th running of the $200,000 Belmont Breeders' Cup (gr. II), one of three stakes set for the track's "Super Saturday" card.
So contentious is Saturday's Turfway Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) that the morning line has five of the seven entrants at odds of between 5-2 and 5-1. The 1 1/16 miles Turfway Breeders' Cup is one of five stakes on the Kentucky Cup card at the northern Kentucky track.
The steam roller known as the Keeneland September yearling sale continued to roll right along during Thursday's fourth session of the 14-day sale, besting the gross, average and median of the previous year. An Elusive Quality colt out of the Glitterman mare First Glitter commanded a final bid of $850,000 from bloodstock agent Buzz Chace, representing Aaron and Marie Jones.
Millionaire Lazy Lode has arrived for stallion duty at Fred Alexander's A&A Ranch near Anthony, N.M.
Our Sugar Bear Stable's three-time stakes winner Travelator is the 116-pound highweight in the 10th running of the $100,000 Floral Park Handicap (gr. III) at Belmont Park. Topping a field of five fillies and mares set to travel the 6 furlongs, the Stanley Hough-trained runner comes back only seven days after stepping up in class in an eight-length loss Sept. 11 in the Endine Handicap (gr. III) at Delaware Park
The D. Wayne Lukas-trained Storied Cat may have drawn the outside post for Saturday's Kentucky Cup Juvenile (gr. III), but the son of Tale of the Cat was made the even-money morning line favorite against six rivals.
Falstaff, who sired California graded stakes winners Go Go, Cover Gal, and Hombre Rapido, has been pensioned from stallion duty at Alex Trebek's Creston Farms near Creston, Calif.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Roses in May, winner of last month's Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga, was installed the 1-2 favorite for Saturday's Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) at Turfway Park. The 118-pound starting highweight will break from post five and face just five rivals in the 1 1/8-mile race that carries a purse of $350,000.
The Ocala Breeders' Sales Company has catalogued 1,152 horses for its fall mixed sale. The auction will be held Oct. 11-14 in Central Florida.
Storm Cat, the leader at the Keeneland September yearling sale, will again stand for $500,000 live foal.
Ticker Tape, a grade I stakes winner on the West Coast, and Green Hills Farm's Spotlight, a grade II winner in the East, converge in the Midwest at Arlington Park as they headline an overflow field of 13 entered for Saturday's $200,000 Pucker Up Stakes (gr. IIIT).
Leading German sire Lando, whose son Epalo ran second in the recent Man o' War Stakes (gr. IT) at Belmont Park, will stand at Haras d'Etreham.
Although there are still several major preps remaining for the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I), the leading players are pretty well set, with Pleasantly Perfect, Ghostzapper, and Birdstone all heading straight for Texas. But there is still one player – former Horse of the Year Azeri -- who could add a whole new dimension to the race.
Stakes winner Nicholas, a son of Danzig who stood at Calumet Farm near Lexington, will stand in 2005 at Larry and Wayland Smalley's C & S Stables near Chelsea, Okla.
Colts by Giant's Causeway and Monarchos brought final bids of $750,000 to top the third session of Keeneland's September yearling sale Wednesday. All key figures for the sale took sizable moves forward in a heated, marathon session that grossed $43.9 million.
- By Jack Shinar
Use of alkalizing agents -- so-called "milkshakes" -- on horses would be illegal under a new regulation proposed Sept. 15 to the California Horse Racing Board.
Alumni Hall will take a pass at Saturday's Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) and will instead go in an allowance race according to trainer Neil Howard in a press release from Turfway Park. The 5-year-old son of A.P. Indy out of the Alydar mare Private Status worked five furlongs in 1:00 3/5 Wednesday morning at Belmont Park.
Yukari Sekiguchi, the daughter-in-law of Fusao Sekiguchi, said her father-in-law did not buy the $8-million Storm Cat colt Tuesday that became the most expensive horse ever sold at the Keeneland September yearling sale.
Spinelessjellyfish, a multiple stakes winner who was grade I stakes-placed, will enter stud at Steve Sahadi's Cardiff Stud Farms near Atascadero, Calif.
Pensioned California stallion Captain James, who was a group II winner in England, was euthanized Sept 10.
- By Dan Liebman
By Dan Liebman - Journalists live for good stories. More so, good quotes. So, when British jockey Kieren Fallon said the following, it was like music to a columnist's tone-deaf ears: "We all know you can't fix races. It doesn't happen. It does in a fairy-tale world but not in the real world."
By Joe Hickey - Of all the great memories bequeathed to me by my boss, the great breeder E.P. Taylor, none is more special than those of accompanying him on many one-on-one after-hour visits to the Windfields Farm barns during "evening stables."
Satish and Anne Sanan's Padua Stables has sold a minority interest in Yes It's True, currently third on the freshman sire list by progeny earnings and fifth on the overall 2-year-old list, to Robert N. Clay's Three Chimneys Farm.
In a scenario reminiscent of the horse industry's heyday of the early 1980s, Japanese trainer Hideyuki Mori won a bidding duel with Irish agent Demi O'Byrne Tuesday to acquire a Storm Cat colt for $8 million at Keeneland's September yearling sale.
- By Tom Keyser
Castigating the management of Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course for everything from construction delays to security cutbacks to apathetic customer service, the Maryland Racing Commission delivered a stern message Sept. 14 to the Maryland Jockey Club and its parent company, Magna Entertainment Corp.
Magna Entertainment Corp. and Pepsi-Cola North America have
signed a multi-year sponsorship agreement to exclusively serve Pepsi-Cola products at 13 MEC racetracks in North America.
John J. Hanley, who worked in a number of racing positions, died Sept. 7 at his Clearwater, Fla., home.
Longtime National Steeplechase Association executive secretary John E. "Jack" Cooper died Sept. 9 at a nursing home near his home in Litchfield, Conn.
- By Tom LaMarra
The MidAtlantic Cooperative, which represents 19 racetracks and their off-track betting facilities and account wagering systems, will pull the plug on simulcasts from Belmont Park effective Sept. 15 having failed to strike a deal with the New York Racing Association.
Grade I winner Sugar and Spice, a half-sister to grade I winner Alydar and champion Our Mims, died Sept. 13 at the Our Mims Retirement Haven near Paris, Ky.,
Pie N Burger is being aimed for his first graded stakes victory in more than a year in Saturday's Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) at Turfway Park. The 6-year-old gelding by Twining won't find the going easy in the 1 1/8-mile race.
On the hurricane rating scale of 1 to 5, the opening session of the Keeneland September yearling auction was a Category 3. It packed a strong financial punch on Sept. 13 in Central Kentucky, driving the market past 2003's hot numbers. But the key business figures didn't grow quite as fast as they did a year ago.
Pimlico Race Course will remain open for live racing until at least Nov. 2 while work continues on the racing surfaces at Laurel Park.
TV Games Network launched on cable television in 13 markets via Comcast Communications, the company announced Sept. 14. About 11 million subscribers will have access to the network through the new carriage deals.
- By Ron Mitchell
Jeff Lifson, an analyst, host, and reporter with TVG since the racing network went on the air in 1999, has joined West Point Thoroughbreds as vice president for Midwest operations.
- By Tom LaMarra
Only one Thoroughbred racetrack would be open in the Buckeye state roughly seven months of the year under a 2005 schedule proposed by the Ohio State Racing Commission.
Because of anticipated inclement weather conditions as a result of Hurricane Ivan, all Finish Line off-track betting locations in southeast Louisiana will be closed Wednesday.
Retired jockey Donald (Donny) Holmes died Sept. 10 at his home in Oak Park, Mich., after a year long battle with cancer.
- By Dan Liebman
John T.L. Jones Jr. has sold Walmac International to entities controlled by his son, John III, and his son's former partner in several horse ventures, Bobby Trussell. The deal, signed Sept. 10, involves the farm's property but no stallion interests.
Boosted by the aggressive buying of Sheikh Mohammed, with additional support from a broad base of domestic and foreign buyers, the marathon Keeneland September yearling sale got off to a solid start Monday.
- By Tom LaMarra
The Breeders' Cup board of directors has approved president D.G. Van Clief Jr. as acting commissioner and chief executive officer of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association.
The New York Breeders' Sales Company, the newly created Thoroughbred sales company located in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. has signed an agreement with Live Global Communications to provide web-casting and internet bidding on its inaugural auction, scheduled for Sept. 28-29.
Grade II winner Domestic Dispute, owned by David Bienstock, Paul Mandabach, and Chuck Winner, will retire at the end of the year and enter stud in 2005 at Northview Stallion Station near Chesapeake City, Md.
- By Tom Keyser
As one last-gasp effort to legalize slot machines in Maryland this year failed because of political warfare, horsemen and breeders in the state have begun what many said was inevitable as long as slots remained forbidden: the exodus of horses, horsemen, and horse farms.
- By Tom LaMarra
Michael Gill, the leading Thoroughbred owner in the country in races and money won, said reported positives for a tranquilizer in two of his horses during the Saratoga meet would result in nothing more than damage to his reputation.
Imperialism, the third-place finisher in this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I), heads the list of 3-year-olds who remain eligible for the Sept. 25 Super Derby at Louisiana Downs.
Perfect Drift, winner of last year's Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II), will not be back to defend his title this Saturday at Turfway Park according to trainer Murray Johnson. Johnson made the announcement Monday morning after Perfect Drift finished a five-furlong work in 1:03 3/5 at Trackside in Louisville.
The fields for the Sept. 18 Kentucky Cup at Turfway Park are beginning to take shape and full fields are expected.
Hero's Tribute, a 6-year-old son of Sea Hero--Eastern Dawn, by Damascus, has been retired from racing and will stand the 2005 breeding season at Doug Arnold's Buck Pond Farm near Versailles, Ky. The three-time stakes winner, who arrived at the farm Sept. 11, will stand for a fee of $5,000.
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