Online voting is now open for the third annual Secretariat Vox Populi Award. Created by Secretariat's owner Penny Chenery, the Vox Populi, or "Voice of the People," Award recognizes the racehorse whose popularity and racing excellence best resounded with the public and gained recognition for the sport during the past year.
The jockeys' allocation for Wednesday night's International Jockeys' Championship took place at Sha Tin Racecourse Monday morning. Top jockey Zac Purton, fresh from winning the World Super Jockeys Series in Japan at the end of November, is hoping his luck can hold for the annual Happy Valley event, which has again drawn 12 of the world's finest riders.
Leaden skies and rain greeted the international contenders as they headed out on to Sha Tin Racecourse shortly after 8:30 a.m. local time on Monday, seven days ahead of their Group 1 engagements in Sunday's Hong Kong International Races.
Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Gary Barber's In Lingerie, the winner of the Grade 1 Spinster at Keeneland in October, has been retired from racing and will be bred to two-time Cartier Horse of the Year Frankel.
Alan Klein and Philip Lebherz's Smiling Tiger put in a game rally down the center of the track in Sunday's Grade 3, $100,000 Vernon O. Underwood Stakes at Hollywood Park and gutted out a one-length victory over Private Zone for trainer Jeff Bonde. The chestnut sprinter's most recent score came seven starts ago when taking the Grade 1 Triple Bend Handicap in 2011, but he got back to his winning ways when completing this six-furlong contest in 1:11 1/5 over the Cushion Track.
The Grade 1, $500,000 Hollywood Starlet, which will be run Saturday at 1 1/16 miles over Hollywood Park's Cushion Track, could have as many as seven participants.
"I thought he was impressive," said Marlow, who is a longtime assistant to Bob Baffert. "He was tested all the way. Mike Smith's move on the first turn was a key factor in the race."
Dust and Diamonds was timed in an easy :52 in advance of her debut for new connections, while Turbulent Descent drilled in a bullet :47, tying for the fastest of 23 moves at the distance on the fast main track. Both four-year-olds are kept on edge for their first start since the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Santa Anita on November 3.
Hyakutaro Kobayashi's homebred Nihonpiro Ours swept from just off the pace to dominate Sunday's Grade 1 Japan Cup Dirt in stakes-record time. By finishing nine furlongs at Hanshin in 1:48 4/5, the five-year-old son of White Muzzle handed jockey Manabu Sakai and trainer Yuki Ohashi their first career Grade 1 victory.
On Saturday, Charles Town announced the eight new members of the Charles Town Racing Hall of Fame to be inducted at the track on December 15.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey teamed up with trainer Mike Maker to take four of the seven Claiming Crown events on Gulfstream Park's opening-day card Saturday, including the richest race of the day, the $194,000 Claiming Crown Jewel.
Game On Dude was outhustled by Nonios leaving the starting gate in Saturday's Grade 3, $242,500 Native Diver, but would not allow that younger rival to outfinish him in the 1 1/8-mile Cushion Track test at Hollywood Park.
The centerpiece event of the Tropical Meet was once again the prestigious Festival of the Sun program on October 13 that featured the final legs of the lucrative Florida Stallion Stakes Series. Jockey Angel Serpa used the day to show off his riding prowess, taking top prize in the $300,000 My Dear Girl division with Verso a Verso before returning two races later to claim glory in the $300,000 In Reality division with the promising colt Speak Logistics.
Brushwood Stable's homebred Philly Ace bided his time down on the rail during Friday's Calder's closing-day co-feature -- the Grade 3, $100,000 Tropical Turf Handicap -- before running down pacesetting 9-5 favorite Hollinger to post a half-length victory.
Closing Range had engineered a similar theft two starts back in the August 26 Twin Lights over 1 1/8 miles at Monmouth, where she just lasted in a photo-finish. The daughter of After Market was coming off her worst career effort, a non-threatening eighth in a division of the Grade 3 Valley View at Keeneland October 19. That was thoroughly uncharacteristic for the lightly-raced filly, who had previously won three of four starts and placed second in the other.
Acclamation has encountered setbacks that have limited his 2012 campaign to just two starts. The six-year-old son of Unusual Heat has won them both, however, extending his winning streak to seven. After scoring an unprecedented three-peat in the Grade 1 Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap in his belated reappearance on June 9, Acclamation successfully defended his title in the Grade 1 Eddie Read on July 21.
I have played in maybe a half dozen handicapping contests in my life, but this weekend I am going to take a shot in the Keeneland NHC qualifier. read blog
The American Graded Stakes Committee of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA) on Friday presented its listing of U.S. Graded and listed stakes for 2013, the results of its annual grading session conducted November 28 in Lexington, Kentucky.
Bolstered by his homebred Wise Dan, dominating winner of the Breeders' Cup Mile on November 3, Morton Fink has won the second annual John Deere Award as outstanding breeder of the 2012 Breeders' Cup Challenge Series and the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
Sunday's Grade 3, $100,000 Vernon O. Underwood drew a short but salty field of seven at Hollywood Park. Grade 1 winners Comma to the Top and Smiling Tiger are logical win challengers given their recent form, but Capital Account, Fast Bullet and Private Zone also merit respect in the six-furlong event.
The racing world is forever on the lookout for the emergence of Thoroughbred stars that possess the talent and charisma to attract the public's attention to the "Sport of Kings."
The Gulfstream VIP Fan Experience will once again be made available to racing fans during the 2012-2013 Gulfstream Park meeting. The unique and exclusive experience will provide fans with an all-access and behind-the-scenes look at Thoroughbred racing from the training of Thoroughbreds in the morning to presenting a trophy in the winner's circle in the afternoon.
Prolific owners-breeders Ken and Sarah Ramsey have emerged as a major players in Thoroughbred racing with their red and white colors prominent at all levels of the sport from the Breeders' Cup down to the claiming ranks.
Klaravich Stables' Populist Politics, probably best known as the
hard-knocking runner-up to Brittlyn Stable's Star Guitar on numerous occasions,
is the early favorite to headline next weekend's $150,000 Louisiana Champions
Day Classic when Fair Grounds hosts the 21st renewal of its series of 11 races
restricted to accredited Louisiana-breds on December 8.
The now-retired Star Guitar, of course, became the top Louisiana-bred money winner of all time last April 1 with a win in the $90,000 Costa Rising Stakes on Louisiana Derby Day. Populist Politics finished second behind him once again that day, beaten a head for the victory.
"Hopefully, next weekend, Populist Politics will get the opportunity to show he's the heir apparent," trainer Tom Amoss said Thursday morning during training hours.
When Krypton Factor took to the track at Meydan Racecourse at the start of last season, he was a handicapper rated 100. This season he will embark on the defense of his 2012 Dubai Golden Shaheen Crown a Group 1 winner rated 123.
Pete Denk and Frank Angst handicap the Jewel Stakes and the Emerald Stakes of the Claiming Crown from Gulfstream Park Saturday. Watch Video
In its four runnings, the Grade 2 Charles Town Classic has attracted 32 different runners who have captured a total of 71 graded stakes between them, with 12 of those coming in races currently a part of the Breeders' Cup's "Win & You're In" Challenge series.
After finishing a well-beaten seventh as the 6-5 favorite in the Breeders' Cup Classic, Game on Dude will attempt to end 2012 on a winning note when he lines up for Saturday's Grade 3, $250,000 Native Diver at Hollywood Park. The five-year-old gelding faces a couple of nice rivals in the five-horse field, but none appear quick enough to run with him early. He could prove difficult to catch from the rail with new jockey Mike Smith.
Tampa Bay Downs launches its 87th season with when the gates open Saturday on Lambholm South Cotillion Festival Day, with a full card of two-year-old races celebrating the track's heritage of developing future equine stars.
Ramon Dominguez, who has effectively sewn up his fourth straight riding title on The New York Racing Association (NYRA) circuit, will miss the next three race weeks after bruising his foot recently at Aqueduct Racetrack, according to his agent, Steve Rushing.
A dazzling farewell victory by popular classic winner Shackleford and jockey Jesus Castanon in the 138th running of the Grade 1 Clark Handicap provided an exclamation point as arguably the brightest moment of Churchill Downs' memorable 21-day fall meet that concluded Sunday.
The Maryland racing community lost one of its most prominent members when award-winning journalist and racing historian Joseph B. Kelly passed away Monday at Stella Maris Rehabilitation and Hospice after a short battle with cancer. He was 94 years old.
Three-year-olds enjoyed a big day in a pair of Grade 3 events at Calder last weekend, and might do so again Friday as the Tropical meet concludes with the 2012 renewals of the Grade 3, $100,000 Tropical Turf Handicap and Grade 3, $100,000 La Prevoyante Handicap for fillies and mares.
In a rousing stretch battle between Japanese Triple Crown winners, reigning Filly Triple heroine Gentildonna outdueled last year's Triple Crown star Orfevre by a nose in Sunday's Grade 1 Japan Cup at Tokyo. Aside from emulating her sire, 2006 Japan Cup legend Deep Impact, Gentildonna became the first sophomore filly ever to win her nation's signature international contest. But her place in the record book was only confirmed after she survived an inquiry, for she bumped Orfevre in their wrestling match.
Gulfstream Park will kick off its meet Saturday with Breakfast at Gulfstream, a family-friendly event that once again allows the public to attend Saturday morning workouts while enjoying a breakfast buffet trackside and meeting special guests.
Jockey Miguel Mena had a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving weekend at Churchill Downs, piloting the winners of the three graded events taking placing Saturday and Sunday. He capped off the graded hat trick Sunday aboard 30-1 longshot Keep Up in the Grade 3, $115,700 River City Handicap.
Godolphin Racing's Better Lucky was no match for leading three-year-old turf filly Dayatthespa last time out at Keeneland, but after a bizarre mishap to the 8-5 favorite in Sunday's Grade 1, $250,000 Matriarch at Hollywood Park, Better Lucky went on to post a 35-1 upset.
Bear Tough Tiger fought off stablemate Bear No Joke to earn his first stakes score in Sunday's Grade 3, $127,940 Kennedy Road at Woodbine.
"If at first you don't succeed -- try, try again."
In Saturday's 86th running of the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs, Uncaptured defeated Frac Daddy by a neck after a thrilling stretch run and both of those precocious two-year-olds, as well as third-place finisher Dewey Square, were in good order Sunday morning.
Seaneen Girl's upset victory in Saturday's Grade 2 Golden Rod at Churchill Downs had trainer Bernie Flint thinking about the first Friday in May on Sunday morning.
While Saturday's 6TH race at Calder Race Course offered the promise of juvenile fillies heading to the turf while still in the early stages of their career, the human narrative of the race centered on longtime trainer Bennie Stutts Jr., who started recent maiden winner Iwillneversaynever in what would be the final race of the 74-year-old conditioner's career.
Even as Grade 1 Cigar Mile Handicap victor Stay Thirsty prepared to depart Todd Pletcher's barn for his upcoming career at Ashford Stud near Versailles, Kentucky, the trainer and owner Mike Repole have plenty to look forward to next year following Unlimited Budget's front-running victory in the Grade 2 Demoiselle for juvenile fillies and Overanalyze's gritty nose triumph in the Grade 2 Remsen for two-year-olds.
Dance Card's victory in Saturday's Grade 1 Gazelle at Aqueduct capped a high-quality year for Godolphin Racing, becoming the outfit's fifth winner of a Grade 1 in 2012.