A settlement has apparently been reached over a federal lawsuit involving a controversial California claiming rule, but racetracks in the state are scrambling to deal with the fall-out left from the suspension of the regulation.
Harvesting a horse's stem cells at birth through the umbilical cord or as a young horse may give it an advantage later if it develops health problems. Researchers from the University of California-Davis spoke to a group of owners and breeders March 22 at the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association office about stem-cell research they are performing, and the future of stem-cell therapy.
Belmont Cat, a fire-breathing New Zealand-bred mare who disappointed her connections in her last start, foiled Bel Air Sizzle and 3-5 favorite Visit in a four-horse blanket finish in the $150,000 Santa Ana Handicap (gr. IIT) on the Santa Anita turf course March 22.
I Want Revenge, a leading Triple Crown candidate by virtue of his 8 1/2-length victory in the Gotham Stakes (gr. III) at Aqueduct on March 7, worked a bullet five furlongs on March 22 on the Cushion Track at Hollywood Park in :58.20.
Allowed to establish an easy lead in the 1 1/2-mile San Luis Rey Handicap (gr. II), Midships put four rivals to bed in the homestretch while posting his first United States victory in three tries for trainer Bobby Frankel March 21.
El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) winner Chocolate Candy was expected to arrive at Santa Anita on the afternoon of March 21 from the Bay Area to begin final preparations for the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 4.
Joel Rosario, Santa Anita's third-leading rider, will ride El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) winner Chocolate Candy in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 4, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said.
Hoping to avert what one racing secretary called "open season" on the horse population in the state, the California Horse Racing Board took the unusual step of contacting a litigant who has put the board in a tenuous situation over a claiming rule.
The California Horse Racing Board got a bit of good news March 19 when the president of Hollywood Park assured commissioners that it would run its 2009 fall/winter meet as planned. The board also received an update on bankruptcy developments from Magna Entertainment Corp.
Bobby Frankel and John Sadler will each send out a pair of fillies and mares in the 42nd edition of the $150,000 Santa Ana Handicap (gr. IIT), a nine-furlong turf test March 22 at Santa Anita.
The Pamplemousse, prepping for the April 4 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) and a showdown with Pioneerof the Nile, worked five furlongs on Pro-Ride March 18 in :59 4/5 under regular rider Alex Solis.
Jockey Anisete Leon, a veteran jockey from the Dominican Republic, recorded his first U.S. victory March 18 at Golden Gate Fields when he guided Archie T to a three-length victory in the sixth race.
Multiple graded stakes winner Spring House, who snapped out of his recent slump with a repeat victory in the San Luis Obispo Handicap (gr. IIT) last month, returns in almost identical conditions for the $150,000 San Luis Rey Handicap (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita March 21.
The suspension of a California Horse Racing Board rule governing statutory "jail-time" in claiming a Thoroughbred racehorse is just the latest development in a bizarre drama surrounding the controversial regulation.
Even-money choice Life Is Sweet became a grade I winner when she circled the field leaving the turn for home and mowed down the leaders through the lane to win the $300,000 Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap (gr. I) at Santa Anita March 14.
Odds-on choice Pioneerof the Nile got the test he needed in preparation for his big showdown with The Pamplemousse next month, turning back a challenge in the stretch to win the $200,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita March 14.
Dale Omenson, a retired Daily Racing Form columnist and desk editor, died March 8 of a heart attack.
Santa Teresita, surprise winner of the Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) at odds of 13-1 one month ago, figures to be a considerably shorter price when she takes on six older fillies and mares in the $300,000 Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap (gr. I) March 14.
Pioneerof the Nile, heading into the $200,000 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) March 14 as the West Coast's top Triple Crown contender, takes on an ambitious group of six up-and-coming colts at Santa Anita.
Ex Mountain Cop was named 2008 Oregon Horse of the Year and champion older male at the Oregon Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders' Association's Annual Awards Banquet March 7 at Portland Meadows.
Thoroughbred owner Mike Pegram will be honored at a dinner presented by the Edwin Gregson Foundation, which helps provide college scholarships to the children of backstretch workers.
A son of Horse of the Year Tiznow brought $650,000 to top the Barretts sale March 10 at the Hinds Pavilion in Pomona, Calif. Jess Jackson's Stonestreet Stables purchased the colt on a telephone bid from the Wavertree Stables consignment
Hollywood Park has scheduled $8 million in stakes for its 2009 spring/summer meet. Three graded events have been cut from the schedule to help preserve overnight purses, officials said.
Barretts is offering a trimmer catalog for its 2009 March select sale of 2-year-olds in training, which is in line with the belt-tightening mood throughout the country. The Southern California auction company has cataloged 124 horses for its March 10 auction, down from 191 in the 2008 book.
A California state senator has introduce legislation seeking real-time monitoring of pari-mutuel wagering, a move prompted by a high-profile technology glitch involving last year's Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Leading West Coast Triple Crown contender Pioneerof the Nile worked five furlongs on Santa Anita's Pro-Ride March 8 in a bullet :58.80 under regular rider Garrett Gomez for the grade II San Felipe Stakes at 1 1/16 miles. At Oaklawn, Old Fashioned worked a bullet five furlongs in :59.
Following is a list of horses to keep an eye on at the Barretts March select sale of 2-year-olds in training at Fairplex in Southern California. The auction, scheduled for March 10, starts at 2 p.m. (PDT).
Einstein became the first East Coast shipper since Broad Brush in 1987 to capture the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I), capitalizing on a perfect trip with jockey Julien Leparoux to defeat the late closer Champs Elysees.
Gio Ponti, driving for the wire under a frantic Ramon Dominguez, got up just in time to nose the outstanding mare Ventura in the $300,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile Handicap (gr. IT) on the Santa Anita turf March 7.
Champion filly Stardom Bound, seven wide at the top of the lane, got up in the final stride by a nose over unheralded Third Dawn to win the $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I) for her fifth consecutive grade I win March 7.
Portland Meadows has added two live programs on March 30-31 to replace two other cards lost earlier recently due to poor track conditions.
A representative from the Magna Entertainment Corp. assured the California Horse Racing Board March 6 that the company "is not going out of business" in spite of its bankruptcy petition and that horsemen purse accounts and customer winnings will be paid on an ongoing basis.
Indian Blessing might pass the $2 million Golden Shaheen (UAE-I) in Dubai on March 28, trainer Bob Baffert said.
Great Britain-based trainer Gerard Butler, whose synthetic track specialist Dansant is entered in the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 7, says he didn't fly across the pond just for a Santa Anita reunion.
Youbet.com reported a loss of $4.5 million for 2008, fueled by an $11.2 million fourth-quarter impairment charge for subsidiary United Tote, the company reported March 5.
Ventura, a stylish winner of the Santa Monica Handicap (gr. I) against her own sex last time out, will take aim at males when she returns to the turf for trainer Bobby Frankel in the $300,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile (gr. IT) at Santa Anita March 7.
Stardom Bound, who could be headed for the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) next month, puts her four-race grade I victory streak on the line in the $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I) March 7.
Colonel John, winner of the Travers Sakes (gr. I) last summer, makes his 2009 debut as the slight choice in a diverse 14-horse field for the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 7.
With Magna Entertainment Corp. reportedly in financial peril, the California Horse Racing Board has called an emergency meeting March 6 to determine the status of the MEC-owned tracks in the state, Santa Anita Park and Golden Gate Fields, as well as the company's licensed advance deposit wagering entity, XpressBet.
For the first time, Washington-breds and British Columbia-breds will compete against each other in the BC Cup at Hastings Racecourse and the Washington Cup at Emerald Downs. Three races at each track have been opened to include horses bred in Washington and British Columbia, Canada.
Thomas Knust has been named racing secretary for the 71st live racing meet at Fairplex Park held during the annual Los Angeles County Fair in September, announced Mike Seder, association vice president and chief financial officer.
Legislation linked to the long-delayed approval of the California state budget Feb. 20 could mean up to an additional $32 million a year for the state's beleaguered horse racing industry.
Battle of Hastings, an English-bred import making his second North American start for trainer Jeff Mullins, overhauled favored Flashmans Papers inside the final furlong en route to a 7-1 surprise in the $100,000 Baldwin Stakes (gr. IIIT) on the Santa Anita hillside turf course March 1.
The stretch-running Tiago is expected to face 13 rivals in the $1- million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 7, but as far as jockey Mike Smith is concerned, the packed field will be better for the 5-year-old son of Pleasant Tap.
Stardom Bound, champion 2-year-old filly of 2008, breezed five furlongs on Pro-Ride in 1:01 2/5 March 1 for the $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I) March 7, which is expected to be her second start of the year.
Scorewithcater outfought Mine That Bird during a stretch-long duel to capture the $100,000 Borderland Derby by a neck at Sunland Park Feb. 28.
Trainer Julio Canani insists he doesn't have Derby fever yet. But after the way his The Pamplemousse glided to victory as the 1-2 choice in the $200,000 Sham Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Feb. 28, that's going to be more difficult to believe as time marches on toward the first Saturday in May.
Since a rash of five horse breakdowns in the opening five days of racing at the current Santa Anita meet -- resulting in four fatalities -- there has been just one race-related death since Dec. 31, Dr. Rick Arthur told the California Horse Racing Board.
On March 1, Brother Keith will make his grass debut against seven rivals in the $100,000 Baldwin Stakes (gr. IIIT) on Santa Anita's downhill turf course. The 6 1/2-furlong sprint is the feature on Santa Anita's nine-race program.
Rebates to wagering customers have become so widespread that the California Horse Racing Board is preparing to rescind its rule against the practice.
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