Handicapping

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Summit of Speed hopefuls litter Calder's worktab

Several horses pointed toward a start in next weekend's Summit of Speed program littered the morning worktab at Calder on Saturday, including a half-mile breeze from Grade 2 Smile Sprint hopeful Apriority, who covered the distance in :49 for trainer Dave Fawkes.

Charles Town cancels Sunday afternoon card

Due to the anticipated heat in the region and temperatures in the area expected to reach the mid to upper 90s, Charles Town has canceled its afternoon card for Sunday. First post for the card was scheduled for 1 p.m. (EDT).

Diaz hopes history repeats itself with Baby J

Baby J debuted a half-length winner on Thursday at Belmont Park for retired jockey Juvenal Diaz, but if all goes according to plan the filly will soon be carrying somebody else's colors, the former rider said on Friday.

Musical Romance heads Summit of Speed workers at Calder

Several Summit of Speed hopefuls made morning workout appearances at Calder on Friday, including a powerful half-mile move by champion female sprinter and likely Grade 1 Princess Rooney favorite Musical Romance, who covered the four-furlong trip in a bullet :46 1/5.

Bodemeister to stand at WinStar Farm

Leading three-year-old Bodemeister, a runaway winner of the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby and a close second in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, will stand stud at WinStar Farm at the conclusion of his racing career. A partnership was formed between WinStar and the colt's owners, Ahmed Zayat and Michel & Tiffany Moreno, who will continue to race the colt.

Mitchell will undergo brain surgery

Trainer Mike Mitchell was diagnosed Monday with a brain tumor, according to his wife Denise. A 17-time leading conditioner on the Southern California circuit, the 64-year-old will undergo surgery Friday to remove it.

Fair Grounds increases purses for eight stakes

Fair Grounds has boosted the purses of eight open-company races on its 2012-2013 stakes schedule released Thursday, marking the third straight year the average stakes purse has increased at the New Orleans racetrack. Last season the track raised purses on 19 stakes events.

Maker keeping options open by entering Hansen in Red Legend

While his connections have maintained that reigning two-year-old Eclipse Award champion Hansen would make his next in Prairie Meadows' Grade 3 Iowa Derby on Saturday night, it didn't stop them from spending $1,500 and dropping their Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner into the entry box for Saturday night's seven-furlong Red Legend Stakes at Charles Town, the featured race on the track's fifth annual Sprint Festival program.

Bated Breath's connections eyeing July Cup

The Group 1, £400,000 July Cup, which takes place at Newmarket on July 14, has 28 horses going forward following the June 26 scratchings deadline. Europe's premier sprint, which takes place over six furlongs, was won last year in tremendous fashion by Dream Ahead, who quickened brilliantly under Hayley Turner to give the rider her first Group 1 success.

'Best Jockey' nominees announced for Espys

Javier Castellano, Ramon Dominguez, Mario Gutierrez and John Velazquez were announced Wednesday by ESPN as the four nominees in the "Best Jockey" category of the 20th annual ESPY Awards. The ESPYS, which honor a wide array of athletes and sports entities, will take place July 11 at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles.

Moyglare Stud's Haefner dies at 101

Moyglare Stud owner Walter Haefner has died in his native Switzerland at age 101. Born in Zurich in 1910, the renowned businessman and billionaire philanthropist, who set up the famed Irish stud farm in 1962, bred such luminaries as Refuse to Bend, Casual Conquest, Trusted Partner and Dress to Thrill.

Saratoga Open House scheduled for July 15

The familiar gates of Saratoga Race Course will open five days early as the New York Racing Association prepares to host its annual pre-season preview party, the 32nd annual Open House. A Saratoga tradition held prior to the start of racing season at North America's most historic thoroughbred racetrack, Open House returns to kick off a full day of fun and attractions on Sunday, July 15, to benefit dozens of local non-profit organizations.

Matz leaning toward Haskell with Union Rags

Michael Matz, the trainer of Belmont Stakes hero Union Rags, confirmed that the road to the three-year-old championship will likely run through the Grade 1 $1 million Haskell Invitational, to be renewed this year for the 45th time, at Monmouth Park.

Camelot looms large in Irish Derby

Camelot will be a hot favorite when bidding for a third straight classic in Saturday's Group 1 Irish Derby. Unbeaten in four career starts, the Aidan O'Brien-trained colt opened 2012 with a neck score in the Group 1 English Two Thousand Guineas and exits a five-length romp in the Group 1 English Derby.

NYRA announces 2012 giveaways at Saratoga

The New York Racing Association, Inc. will continue its tradition of iconic giveaways with four Sunday giveaway days scheduled for the summer 2012 meet at Saratoga Race Course. Each emblazoned with the Saratoga Race Course logo, the 2012 giveaways include returning favorites and one new offering. The schedule is as follows:

Stars to Shine holds Upperline in Trillium; Just Got In takes My Dear

A determined Stars to Shine held off a rallying Upperline to win the $97,795 Trillium Stakes on Sunday's Queen's Plate undercard at Woodbine. Stars to Shine, ridden by Alex Solis and trained by Mark Frostad for The Grange House Partnership, rushed to the lead through the far turn of the 1 1/8-mile event and held sway as the trio of Upperline, Smart Penny and Maristar tried and failed to reel her in.

Positively, Roman's Avenue work for Bashford Manor

Positively, a recent maiden winner at Churchill Downs, drilled a bullet three furlongs beneath the Twin Spires in :35 1/5 Sunday morning for trainer Pat Byrne in his last major training move prior to Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 Bashford Manor.

Peruvian apprentice rider Chuan coming to New York

New York may soon be home to a young apprentice rider hailing from Peru as 16-year-old Martin Chuan prepares to emigrate to the United States. Agent Roger Sutton expects to take Chuan's book when he arrives in this country, which Sutton hopes will be ahead of opening day at Saratoga on July 20, though no firm arrangements have been made.

Desert Blanc retired with a tendon injury

Desert Blanc, who won the Grade 1 Manhattan Handicap by a nose on June 9, has been retired with a tendon injury, Peter Bradley, managing co-owner of Bradley Thoroughbreds, announced on Sunday.

Zo Impressive could try CCA Oaks or await Alabama

Grade 1 Mother Goose winner Zo Impressive returned from Saturday's three-quarter-length victory over Disposablepleasure in good order, trainer Tom Albertrani reported Sunday morning, and will likely make her next start at Saratoga in either the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks on July 21 or the Grade 1 Alabama on August 18.

Gemologist returns to worktab, eyes Jim Dandy

WinStar Farm's Gemologist, winner of the Grade 1 Wood Memorial in April, on Sunday posted his first workout since his 16th-place finish in the May 5 Kentucky Derby on May 5. The three-year-old traveled four furlongs in :49 2/5 over Belmont Park's fast training track, and trainer Todd Pletcher said that the colt is likely to make his next start in the Grade 2 Jim Dandy on July 28 at Saratoga.

Potesta edges Eden's Moon in Hollywood Oaks

Fanticola and Scardino's Potesta prevailed by a nose following a thrilling stretch battle with Eden's Moon in Saturday's Grade 2, $150,000 Hollywood Oaks, stamping herself as potentially a major player in three-year-old filly ranks in her stakes debut. An impressive maiden scorer in her previous outing, the Mike Mitchell-trained daughter of Macho Uno was making only her third lifetime start in the 1 1/16-mile event.

Zo Impressive holds Disposablepleasure in Mother Goose

What was supposed to be a showdown between Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks queen Believe You Can and Grade 1 Acorn diva Contested turned into a match-race between Zo Impressive and Disposablepleasure in Saturday's Grade 1, $294,000 Mother Goose Stakes. In the end, Zo Impressive proved best under jockey Rajiv Maragh, holding her fellow gray rival by three parts of a length while running 1 1/16 miles in 1:44 1/5 on the good Belmont Park dirt.

Dancing Solo alone at the wire in Boiling Springs

Twin Creeks Racing Stables' Dancing Solo sat right off the steady pace set by longshot Cheimon, took command turning into the stretch, and kicked 1 1/2 lengths clear to notch her first graded victory in Saturday's Grade 3, $103,000 Boiling Springs Stakes at Monmouth. Sent off as the 9-5 second choice off her score in the local prep, the May 27 Little Silver Stakes, the Todd Pletcher trainee covered 1 1/16 firm-turf miles in 1:41 4/5 and paid $5.60, $3.20 and $2.60.

Blueeyesintherein much the best in Debutante

Dorothy Self and Barry Simms' Blueeyesintherein proved superior to the rest of the juvenile fillies in Kentucky with a 2 1/2-length triumph in Saturday's Grade 3, $112,200 Debutante at Churchill Downs. The even-money favorite in a field of 10, Blueeyesintherein steadily advanced from fourth, rallied four-wide into the stretch and drove home an impressive winner under Leandro Goncalves. She paid $4, $3 and $2.40 after completing six furlongs on a fast track in 1:11 3/5.

Lopresti plots races for 'the 'Dans', Turallure

Trainer Charlie Lopresti thought Wise Dan was going to win last Saturdays' Grade 1 Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs, but Ron the Greek under Jose Lezcano found an opening on the rail and got up just in time to beat the winner of last fall's Grade 1 Clark Handicap.

Romans reveals plans for stable stars

Dullahan appeared on the Churchill Downs work tab on Saturday for the first time since his seventh-place finish in the Grade 1 Belmont Stakes and trainer Dale Romans said the son of Even the Score would run next in Monmouth Park's Grade 1, $1 million Haskell Invitational on July 29.

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