A field of 12 has been drawn to face the starter Saturday in the 1 1/8-mile Fred W. Hooper Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Race Course. Headed by co-highweights A Huevo and Super Frolic, the race is the 12th on the "Grand Slam II" card featuring four stakes and $600,000 in purses.
Declan's Moon and Proud Accolade, two leading contenders for the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) on Saturday, completed drills for the 1 1/16-mile race with five-furlong works here Sunday.
Veteran Maryland horseman Tom Voss confirmed Saturday that Trillium Stable's 4-year-old gelding Dreadnaught, winner of Aqueduct's Red Smith Handicap (gr. IIT) last out, will be on a van this week bound for Calder Race Course and Saturday's $200,000 W.L. McKnight Handicap (gr. IIT).
English-based trainer Mark Johnston, whose 120 winners this year are more than anybody else, including champion trainer Saeed bin Suroor (115), anticipates a successful journey to Dubai for the 2005 Dubai International Racing Carnival.
South Africa trainer Mike de Kock is assembling a very powerful team for the 2005 Dubai International Racing Carnival as he bids to repeat his success of last year. At that inaugural Carnival, de Kock's horses won nine times and about £1.9 million in the process, as well as a $50,000 bonus for the trainer as leading Carnival handler.
Trainer John Shirreffs aims for his fourth Bayakoa Handicap (gr. II) winner in seven years Sunday at Hollywood Park when he saddles Hollywood Story in the $150,000 race for fillies and mares.
Two-year-old filly Aclassysassylassy has shown her ability on the dirt, dominating her Florida rivals. She'll make her turf course debut Sunday at Calder Race Course in a field of 10 entered in the $50,000 Georgia Debutante overnight stakes at 1 1/16 miles.
Fusaichi Samurai, whose purchase by Fusao Sekiguchi for $4.5 million earlier this year set a record for a juvenile sold at public auction, is scheduled to make his first career start Saturday in the fourth race at Hollywood Park.
Florida invader Dynever, third in the 2003 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), heads a field of eleven in Hollywood Park's $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) at 1 1/8 miles Saturday.
With slots approved for Fair Grounds and likely to be in place in 2005, Louisiana breeders already seem to be reaping the rewards. On Saturday, the state's horsemen will vie for a $1 million, 10-race card that features seven Thoroughbred stakes, highlighted by the $150,000 Louisiana Champion's Day Classic.
An overflow field of 16 passed the entry box for the 12th running of the Pete Axthelm Stakes Saturday to be contested over 7 1/2 furlongs on the turf at Calder Race Course. Only 12 3-year-olds will be allowed to start.
Runway Model, one of the leading 2-year-old fillies in the nation, is scheduled for shipping from Kentucky to California for the Hollywood Starlet (gr. I) on Dec. 19, Hollywood Park stakes co-coordinator Dan Eidson reported on Wednesday.
Battle Won, the lone American runner in the Dec.12 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint (HK-I) at Sha Tin, drew post five in a field of 13 runners for the $10 million (HK) 1,000-meter (five furlong) race. The four-race Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International race card was drawn inside the new $410-million (HK) retractable roof walking ring at Sha Tin.
After a dull effort in the Japan Cup (Jpn-I), Irish-bred Powerscourt hopes to rebound with a strong showing in the Dec. 12 $18 million (HK) Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup (HK-I) at Sha Tin. The Aiden O'Brien-trainee will break from barrier one under jockey Jamie Spencer in the 2,000-meter (1 ¼-mile) race.
Irish jockey Jamie Spencer will have multiple views of Sha Tin Racecourse Dec. 12 during the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Races. He will guide Powerscourt from the inside, breaking from barrier one in the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup (HK-I), Brian Boru from barrier four in the $14 million (HK) Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase (HK-I), and Antonius Pius from the far outside barrier 14 in the $14 million (HK) Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Mile (HK-I).
Battle Won, the lone American runner in the Dec. 12 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International races, went to the track Wednesday morning for a brief gallop in preparation for the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint (HK-I) at Sha Tin.
UltraCade Technologies, Breeders' Cup Ltd. and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Tuesday unveiled a coin- operated horse racing game called Breeders' Cup Tournament Edition.
Twenty six young colts and geldings and one filly have been nominated to the 19th renewal of Tampa Bay Downs' $60,000 Inaugural Stakes--the track's traditional opening day event--set for Saturday when the oval kick's off its 79th season.
Dynever will be flown from Florida to California Monday to compete in the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) at Hollywood Park Dec. 11, trainer Christophe Clement said Sunday.
Magic Weisner, the 2002 Preakness Stakes (gr. I) runner-up who contracted West Nile Virus later that year, could return to racing. Owner/trainer Nancy Alberts has not given up hope, giving the 5-year-old a half-mile breeze in :49 4/5 at Pimlico Saturday morning.
Trainer Mike Mitchell called an audible Friday morning, supplementing grade I winner Kela to the $100,000 Vernon O. Underwood Stakes (gr. III) at Hollywood Park Sunday for $2,000.
Tizbud, winner of the 2003 California Cup Classic, is on his toes for his next start in the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) at Hollywood Park on Dec. 11, trainer John Sadler said Friday.
A total of 10 grade I stakes and more than $12 million in stakes money will be up for grabs when Santa Anita Park kicks off its 85-day winter/spring meeting Dec. 26 with the Malibu Stakes (gr. I).
The connections for Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) upsetter Better Talk Now are gambling that a victory in Hollywood Park's $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup (gr. IT) Saturday will be enough to secure an Eclipse Award as the year's North American male turf champion.
Two-year-old filly Punch Appeal, a winner of five races in 2004, will try to cap a successful year with a victory in the rich $250,000 Boyd Gaming's Delta Princess Stakes at Delta Downs Saturday.
Trainer Craig Dollase said Thursday that Corey Nakatani would ride Wilko in the Grade I Hollywood Futurity for 2-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on Dec. 18.
A.P. Adventure breezed six furlongs in 1:14 on the Hollywood Park main track Thursday for a probable return in the $150,000 Bayakoa Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares on Dec. 12.
Evening Attire, winner of the Saratoga Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) this summer, will carry highweight of 123 pounds in Saturday's Queens County Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct. The grade I winner and earner of more than $2.3 million will face nine older foes in the 1 3/16ths-miles race that goes at approximately 3:44 p.m. EST.
With the year drawing to a close, it's time to start sizing up the future travelers who are preparing to embark on the 2005 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) trail.
Silver Tree and Host, both graded stakes winners in 2004, are the likely favorites in the $100,000 Tropical Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Calder Race Course Saturday.
Trainer Barclay Tagg sends out a pair of last-race stakes winners, part of a full field entered for the $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares on the Calder turf course Saturday.
French invader Sunny Sky, third-place finisher in the Generous Stakes (gr. IIIT) for 2-year-olds on turf Saturday, will remain in California and test dirt for the first time in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) at 1 1/16 miles on Dec. 18, according to trainer Maurice Zilber.
George Wolf's homebred Leaving On My Mind tops a field of 10 in Saturday's $1 million Boyd Gaming's Delta Jackpot Stakes, the second richest 2-year-old race in North America.
AmericaTab followed the success of its first Players' Pool on the Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 with its second hit in a month. Bettors had one winning pick six ticket and 28 consolation tickets Nov. 28 at Hollywood Park.
Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) winner Sweet Catomine worked for the first time since racing's championship day and posted a three furlong move in :36 1/5, breezing, under jockey David Flores at Santa Anita Tuesday morning.
Yes, it's only December, but what better way to fill the gap between the turkey and the tinsel than to start talking Kentucky Derby (gr. I). Before discussing the Derby hopefuls gathering all over the country, it must be pointed out that next year's road to Louisville will be unlike anything we've ever seen, and there is no doubt that the times are indeed changing.
Stronach Stables' Ghostzapper and Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Roses in May, the one-two finishers in the $4-million Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I), will take different paths in 2005, at least until the summer when they could square off again in the Whitney Handicap (gr. I).
Fox Hill Farms' Rockport Harbor, who scored a gutsy victory over Galloping Grocer in the Nov. 27 Remsen Stakes (gr. II), came out of the 1 1/8-mile race with a severe gash on his right hind leg that was described by trainer John Servis as "pretty nasty."
Better Talk Now, staging a late bid for an Eclipse Award, will be flown to California on Tuesday for the $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup (gr. IT) Saturday, trainer H. Graham Motion said Sunday from his base at Fair Hill, Md.
Clark Handicap (gr. II) winner Saint Liam is to ship to Florida's Palm Meadows training center Wednesday, where he'll be prepared for the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I), his next target at Gulfstream Park Feb. 5.
The $100,000-added Fall Highweight Handicap, originally scheduled for Thanksgiving but postponed until Sunday because of poor track conditions, lost pre-race favorite Bwana Charlie when entries were taken Friday.
Four-year-old Dynever, last seen finishing a disappointing eighth behind Horse of the Year candidate Ghostzapper in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), faces eight rivals Sunday in the $40,000 Mel's Hope overnight stakes at Calder Race Course.
The Julio Canani-trained Blackdoun is the likely favorite in Sunday $500,000 Hollywood Derby (gr. IT) at 1 1/4 miles, which attracted 13 3-year-olds.
The connections of 3-year-old Ticker Tape hope that a victory in Sunday's $500,000 Matriarch (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park will influence enough votes to secure an Eclipse Award as champion grass filly or mare.
The Churchill Downs spotlight shines on the 2-year-olds Saturday as the fall meet concludes with the $200,000-added Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) and the $200,000 Golden Rod (gr. II) for fillies.
Sis City, owned in part by New York Yankees manager Joe Torre, is the filly to beat in Saturday's $200,000 Demoiselle (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/8 miles.
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.
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