Two undefeated juvenile colts – Galloping Grocer and Rockport Harbor – square off in the $200,000 Remsen (gr. II) at Aqueduct Saturday at 1 1/8 miles.
Pico Central and Kela, the two best sprinters based in California, have traveled across the country to meet at Aqueduct in New York's final grade I race of 2004, Saturday's $350,000 Cigar Mile. The Cigar Mile will be the featured event on a 10-race card that includes a pair of grade II juvenile stakes, the Remsen and Demoiselle.
Greek Sun, the probable favorite in the $500,000 Hollywood Derby (gr. IT) Sunday, has been taken out of the race by trainer Bobby Frankel.
Cajun Beat, the 2003 Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) champion who has raced on grass only once, helps lead off trainer Bobby Frankel's assault on Hollywood Park's Turf Festival in the $150,000 Turf Express Handicap (gr. IIIT) at 5 1/2 furlongs.
Ten horses will vie in the elite race of Churchill Downs' fall schedule, the $500,000 Clark Handicap (gr. II) Friday in Louisville. The Brazilian-bred Lundy's Liability will carry high weight of 120 pounds over the nine furlongs.
Azeri, who figured to be the brightest star to shine over the holiday weekend at Churchill Downs in Thursday's Falls City Handicap (gr. II), has not been entered by trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Lukas, along with owner Michael Paulson, wasn't overly concerned with the 126-pound assessment, it was the spread in the weights that will keep her on the sidelines.
Fair Grounds Racecourse in New Orleans kicks off its 133rd season of live racing and first under the ownership of Churchill Downs Inc. Thursday with the traditional opening-day feature, the Thanksgiving Handicap.
Will "Rocky" score another knockout? Will The Grocer breeze through the express lane again? Those questions should be answered in the Nov. 27 Remsen Stakes (gr. II) at Aqueduct. The same day, at Churchill Downs, Iroquois (gr. III) winner Straight Line again will try to take the shortest way home in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II).
Jockeys John Velazquez, Edgar Prado and Jerry Bailey, the nation's three leaders in purse earnings this year, will leave their New York base to ride in the Turf Festival at Hollywood Park next weekend.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas says he's undecided about whether to run Azeri in the $300,000-added Falls City Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Thanksgiving Day due to concern over weight assignments.
Ro Parra's speedy veteran Warleigh can help sizzling trainer Steve Asmussen assault on the single-season win mark when he faces an overflow field of turf competitors in Sunday's $150,000-added River City Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs.
Kentucky-based trainer Rebecca "Becky" Maker saddles her first starter at Aqueduct when she send Galactic Cat to the post Sunday in the $100,000-added Valley Stream (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies at six furlongs.
Trainer Todd Pletcher, who leads the nation with earnings of about $16.5 million this year, plans to ship three horses to Hollywood Park for the Turf Festival Nov. 26-28.
A dozen 3-year-old colts will take the gate for Sunday's $150,000 Oklahoma Derby (gr. III), going 1 1/8-miles at Remington Park. The field is led by grade II winner Quinton's Gold Rush and grade III winner Mr. Jester.
Grade I winner Gygistar has been established as likely favorite against nine others in the $100,000 Charles H. Hadry Stakes, one of five stakes on the undercard at Pimlico Saturday where the featured race is the $300,000 Frank J. De Francis Memorail Dash (gr. I).
A couple of heavy hitters from the New York area have shipped to Pimlico in an attempt to annex the $100,000 Laurel Futurity (gr. III) Saturday.
Rosalee C. Davison's homebred Here Us Roar hopes to extend her undefeated career tally to three in Saturday's $100,000 Selima Stakes at Pimlico.
The top three finishers from last year's race plus four horses who competed in last month's Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) are among the 11 entries for Saturday's $300,000 De Francis Dash (gr. I) at Pimlico Race Course.
Saint Liam, who gave leading Horse of the Year candidate Ghostzapper his toughest race of the season while finishing second in the Woodward Stakes (g.r I) Sept. 11, is probable for the $500,000 Clark Handicap (gr. II) Nov. 26 at Churchill Downs.
Five-year-old Irish Colonial, who snapped a nine-race losing streak in his last start when he prevailed in the Mohawk Handicap for New York-breds, returns to open company in Saturday's $150,000 Red Smith Handicap (gr. IIT) on the Aqueduct turf.
Willmott Stable's consistent Aud, who turned in perhaps her career-best performance last fall at Churchill Downs, looms as a narrow favorite in an overflow field of 13 entered in Saturday's $150,000-added Cardinal Handicap (gr. IIIT) for older fillies and mares on the grass.
Chasing a possible Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old, unbeaten Declan's Moon returns to action in Saturday's Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) where his competition in the seven-furlong event will include Seize the Day, a smashing 11-length winner of his only start.
Norfolk Knight takes a three-race winning streak into Saturday's $159,750 Woodbine Slots Cup (Can-III), where he'll face three opponents.
Five horses bring Eclipse Award hopes into the final Grade I steeplechase of 2004 in the $100,000 Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup (NSA-I) at Springdale Race Course in Camden, S.C., Nov. 21.
The Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) is history, and all the race did was pretty much complicate matters. Afleet Alex, Sun King, Roman Ruler and company still look legitimate, despite being upset by Euro invader Wilko. Now it's time to brace for the post Breeders' Cup wave that is about to unleash some new, exciting prospects for next spring's classics.
John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) winner Better Talk Now will make his next start in the $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup (gr. IT) on Dec. 4, trainer H. Graham Motion said Wednesday from Fair Hill, Md.
Louisiana Super Derby (gr. II) winner Fantasticat breezed four furlongs Wednesday at Churchill Downs in preparation for a possible run in the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) Nov. 26.
Trainer Bernie Flint is now pointing Runway Model toward the Nov. 27 Golden Rod Stakes (gr. II) at Churchill Downs. The trainer had originally planned to give the Darley Alcibiades (gr. II) winner the remainder of the year off, but said his star filly "had been tearing the barn down" since returning from the troubled third-place effort in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I).
Duckornodinner, the first foal out of two-time champion and millionaire Silverbulletday, has joined trainer Bob Baffert's main string at Santa Anita where he has begun preparations for his career debut.
Shaconage tuned up for her run in Saturday's $150,000 Cardinal Handicap (gr. IIIT) with a good half-mile work Tuesday over Churchill Downs' Matt Win Turf Course. The Mitch Shirota-trained filly breezed four furlongs around the "dogs" in :50.60 over a course rated "good.
The Paul McGee-trained Honor in War turned in a sharp four-furlong work around the dogs Tuesday at Churchill Downs in preparation for Sunday's River City Handicap (gr. IIIT). The son of Lord at War covered the distance over "good" footing in :48.80 under jockey Bill Troilo.
Trainer Neil Howard listed William S. Farish's Fayette (gr. III) winner and Pimlico Special (gr. I) runner-up Midway Road as 50-50 for the Nov. 26, $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) after a six-furlong breeze at Churchill Downs Monday.
Elisabeth Alexander's Magna Graduate and Old School Stable's Social Probation, two stakes-placed contenders for the $200,000-added Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) for 2-year-olds on Nov. 27, turned in solid breezes on a frosty autumn Monday at Churchill Downs.
With seven weeks remaining in the calendar and racing year, jockey John Velazquez is well ahead of Edgar Prado and Jerry Bailey in the race to be leading rider by earnings.
Southern Africa, victorious in two of three starts in England, is scheduled to make his United States bow in the $100,000 Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at seven furlongs on Saturday.
Musical Chimes, who was neck shy of victory behind Heat Haze in the 2003 Matriarch (gr. IT), worked six furlongs on the Hollywood Park turf Sunday for her second shot at the $500,000 test for fillies and mares at one mile on turf Nov. 28.
Colonial Colony, the stretch-running winner of the Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) earlier this year, gains the services of patient Pat Day in the 130th running of the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) on Nov. 26.
Trainer Bill Mott, the all-time victory leader at Churchill Downs, can add another to his dazzling total under the Twin Spires when he saddles David Garner's probable favorite Cool Conductor to face 10 3-year-old rivals in Sunday's inaugural $150,000-added Commonwealth Turf.
Lakeside Farm's Colonial Colony, upset winner of the Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) at Churchill Downs in June, tuned up for an expected bid for the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) with a six-furlong breeze on Friday at Churchill Downs.
Trainer Bobby Frankel has 10 probable starters lined up for this year's Hollywood Park Turf Festival, the 14th edition of the six-race $1.75 million series of grass races Nov. 26-28.
One for Rose, last year's Sovereign Award winner as Canada's top older filly, is back to defend her title in the $175,000 Maple Leaf (Can-III) Saturday at Woodbine, a 1 ¼-mile main track event the Ontario-bred won by 6 ¼ lengths in 2003.
Leo Getz, a California-based 2-year-old maiden owned in part by actor Joe Pesci, could prove to be the "Lethal Weapon" of Saturday's $250,000 Coronation Futurity for Ontario breds at Woodbine.
Freefourinternet, looking to bounce back after a disappointing performance in the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), has been tabbed as the 5-2 favorite in Saturday's $100,000 Michael G. Schaefer Mile at Hoosier Park.
California graded stakes winner Supah Blitz and juvenile standouts Flamenco and Aclassysassylassy are among the top horses competing on Saturday's Florida Million program at Calder Race Course.
Sweet Catomine, who wrapped up an apparent Eclipse Award with a resounding victory in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) at Lone Star Park on Oct. 30, may try to add an exclamation point to a brilliant year with a final start in the Hollywood Starlet (gr. I) on Dec. 19.
Team Valor Stables' 4-year-old colt Colita looks to break into the stakes win column as one of the horses to beat in the $100,000 Stuyvesant Handicap (gr. III) over 1 1/8 miles at Aqueduct Saturday.
Six-time British jockey champion Kieren Fallon will be searching for his first victory at Churchill Downs when he climbs aboard favored River Belle in the $150,000-added Mrs. Revere Stakes (gr. IIT) for 3-year-old fillies on Saturday at Churchill Downs.
Whitney Handicap (gr. I) winner Roses In May, the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) runner-up Oct. 30, will not run in the Clark Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 26.
Blackdoun and Special Ring failed to handle a yielding turf course in the Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) at Lone Star Park on Oct. 30, finishing seventh and thirteenth, respectively, but the race took so little out of them they could both return later this month at Hollywood Park.
Irish trainer Dermot Weld, who shipped Dress to Thrill to California to win the Matriarch (gr. IT) in 2002, plans to try his luck again with three horses in the Turf Festival at Hollywood Park.
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