Z Humor and Smooth Air look to take another step toward the Kentucky Derby Feb. 16 at Tampa Bay Downs.
It used to be so simple. Every step horses took on the Kentucky Derby trail was on good old Mother Earth. Now, we have no idea what some horses are putting their feet into.
IEAH Stables has acquired an interest in multiple graded-stakes winner Court Vision, one of the leading contenders for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Peter Vegso homebred War Monger came from well off the pace, moved into contention around the final turn, and caught pacesetter Lucky J.H. in mid-stretch en route to a 1 1/4-length victory in the $500,000 Sunshine Millions Turf Jan. 26 at Gulfstream Park.
Presious Passion and Icy Atlantic are two of the top contenders in the Jan. 26 event at Gulfstream Park.
Virginia Kraft Payson's multiple graded stakes-winning homebred Rutherienne looks to bounce back from a three-month layoff, as the Pulpit filly headlines a full field of 12 in the $100,000 Frances A. Genter Stakes (gr. IIIT) Dec. 29 at Calder Race Course.
A winner of five of seven starts this year, Midnight Cry Stable's homebred Stormin Baghdad headlines a field of 13 for the Dec. 22 Bonapaw Stakes, the last of four $100,000 stakes on the inaugural "Santa Sprint Saturday" card at Fair Grounds.
Zayat Stables' High Again, winner of the 2007 Bonnie Miss Stakes (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park, died the morning of Dec. 13 while working at Payson Park Training Center in South Florida.
Four-year-old fillies J'ray and Bayou's Lassie, both with graded stakes victories this year, and a group I winner from Chile are set for the $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT), an evenly matched 1 1/8-mile turf test for fillies and mares at Calder Race Course Dec. 1.
Bill Mott figured that the Remsen Stakes (gr. II) would be a good test for his promising 2-year-old colt Court Vision, one that would give the trainer an idea of whether the son of Gulch was a legitimate, early Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) candidate.
Mushka's future looks bright after she came from last to first to win Aqueduct's $200,000 Demoiselle Stakes (gr. II) by 4 1/2 lengths Nov. 24.
Bill Mott has a barn full of promising juveniles. But of all of them, Court Vision may have the pedigree, speed and talent to give the trainer a legitimate Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) contender.
You know it's early when you start carving into the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) before your Thanksgiving turkey, but this is a good time to start evaluating the 2-year-olds and get a jump on this week's grade II Remsen and Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes and grade III Hollywood Prevue.
Glencrest Farm's Panty Raid, winner of the Keeneland's Juddmonte Spinster (gr. I) in her most recent outing, is being pointed to Churchill Downs $300,000-added Falls City Handicap (gr. II) to be run Thanksgiving Day, according to trainer Todd Pletcher.
Laying just off the pace for three-quarters, 5-year-old Istan exploded at the top of the stretch and pulled away to win by 8 resounding lengths in the $200,000 Ack Ack Handicap (gr. III) at Churchill Downs Nov. 3.
Live Oak Plantatation's 9-year-old Revved Up, Lewis Pell and Michael Eigner's 3-year-old Imawildandcrazyguy and J D Farm's 2-year-old Wise Answer are prominent among the Florida-bred stars young and old nominated for the eight stakes races worth a total of $1.2 million to be run on the Florida Million program at Calder Race Course Nov. 10.
WinStar Farm's Court Vision made an eye-opening run down the middle of the racetrack, passing four rivals in deep stretch en route to a half-length victory in the $150,000 Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) opening day at Churchill Downs Oct. 28.
Peter Vegso homebred Go Between, took the lead at the top of the stretch and then held off betting favorite Stream Cat by a neck to win the $150,000 Fayette Stakes (gr. III) in record time in the final race of the Keeneland Fall Meet Oct. 27.
Brass Hat and Go Between, both coming off of stakes victories, highlight a field of nine in the $150,000 Fayette Stakes (gr. III), the final race of Keenelands fall meet Oct. 27.
Peter Vegso's War Monger was in last place after a half-mile, but made a decisive move along the far turn and rallied to take the $100,000 Rutgers University Stakes by a length-and-a-half on the Monmouth Park turf Oct. 24.
Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott discusses his six Breeders' Cup starters and the uncertainty surrounding the status of his star 2-year-old Majestic Warrior, winner of the Hopeful Stakes. Mott also talks about his resurgence as one of the top trainers in the country in 2007.
Kinsman Farm homebred Majestic Warrior will miss the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) because of a minor left foot injury, trainer Bill Mott said Oct. 21.
Any starter who makes it to the 2007 Breeders' Cup World Championships at Monmouth Park is an extraordinary story. But with all due respect to the rest of the starters, none makes a better fairy tale than Shakespeare, who has returned from a near career-ending injury to become one of favorites for the $2 million NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) Oct. 27.
Classic Campaign entered the $150,000 Robert F. Carey Memorial Handicap (gr. IIIT) without a win in his last six starts. But the Kinsman Stable homebred proved he was right where he belonged, rallying from fourth place at the top of the stretch to overtake Crested (GB) by a nose on the Hawthorne turf Sept. 29.
Roshani has done very little wrong in five starts this year, winning four times, while taking money in every effort. In the $150,000 Violet Stakes (gr. IIIT) Sept. 28 at Meadowlands, the 4-year-old daughter of Fantastic Light-Sahibah will face five challengers, three that she beat handily last month. It all could add up to another victory and a soft prep for the $2-million Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr.IT) at Monmouth Park Oct. 27.
Following another blowout by Lawyer Ron in Saturday's Woodward Stakes (gr. I), we're down to one champion-caliber older horse who looks capable of withstanding this year's 3-year-old juggernaut in the Breeders' Cup Classic Powered by Dodge (gr. I).
- By Claire Novak
For days, reporters have been asking Bill Mott about his successful season at Saratoga, where he leads all trainers with a 16-6-10 standing from 53 starts. For days, Mott has been realistic about his chances; he's seen other horsemen hit unexpected winning streaks, has known the dry spells that can suddenly hit a leading trainer's string. Just because he was ahead at week one, or week two, or week three of the meet doesn't mean he'll be the last man standing when they run the last race on the last day, and this is what Mott has been quick to say.
The next start for 7-year-old campaigner Silver Tree is yet to be determined, but trainer Bill Mott said he will consider sending the son of Hennessy to Australia this fall to compete in the Oct. 27 Tattersalls Cox Plate (group I).
Jockey Julien Leparoux won six of the first eight races on a nine-race card at Churchill Downs June 27, including a dead-heat.
Quite a Bride made every pole a winning one while scoring a 2 1/4-length win in course record time in the $164,100 Early Times Mint Julep Handicap (gr. IIIT) (VIDEO) for fillies and mares on the Churchill Downs turf course Saturday.
Graded stakes winner Quite a Bride looks to better a bridesmaid-like performance in the May 5 Churchill Distaff Turf Mile as she stretches out for Saturday's renewal of the Early Times Mint Julep Handicap (gr. IIIT) on Churchill's Stephen Foster Day undercard.
Zayat Stable's favored Marcavelly, who broke his maiden at first asking on Belmont Park's Widener Turf Course last summer, returned to the course Friday to win the $107,700 Hill Prince (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds at a mile by 1 1/4 lengths over second choice Distorted Reality.
Six 3-year-olds will battle one mile over the Widener Turf Course in Friday's 33rd running of the $100,000-added Hill Prince (gr. IIIT), a race in which Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott and Eclipse Award winner Todd Pletcher are likely to combine for a very chalky exacta box.
Shakespeare, winner of the 2005 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational Stakes (gr. IT) and Belmont Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIT), is back in training under the supervision of Kiaran McLaughlin after spending more than a year on the sidelines.
Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) contender High Again breezed a strong half-mile in :47 4/5 at Churchill Downs Monday for trainer Bill Mott. Jockey Larry Melancon deputized for Cornelio Velasquez in the saddle.
Zayat Stables' favored Moudez, an Irish-bred colt who began his career in England, prevailed in a field of eight 3-year-olds to win the $112,100 Forerunner Stakes on the grass Thursday at Keeneland.
WinStar Farm homebred Sharp Susan assumed control of the tempo at the start and was never challenged, cruising to a three-length win as the favorite in the $107,000 Herecomesthebride Stakes (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-old fillies on the Gulfstream Park turf Sunday.
Kinsman Stable's 4-year-old homebred filly Sweet Fervor rallied from off a fast early pace in the $200,000 Shirley Jones Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares at Gulfstream Park to score a one-length victory over 8-5 favorite Any Limit.
Zayat Stable's High Again, passed on the far turn by even-money favorite Christmas Kid, found another gear in the stretch of Saturday's $150,000 Bonnie Miss Stakes (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park, edging away for a 1 1/2-length victory in the 1 1/8-mile test for 3-year-old fillies.
Peter Vegso's favored Silver Tree returned to his favorite course Sunday, closing with a big rush to sweep past Steel Light in the final strides while taking the $125,000 Appleton Handicap (gr. IIIT) by a neck on the Gulfstream Park turf.
Miesque's Approval came from behind all right, unleashing a big kick that not only carried him to victory in the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT), but to an Eclipse Award as the top male turf horse of 2006.
Peter Vegso's grade I winning 5-year-old mare Splendid Blended has been retired, trainer Bill Mott said Saturday.
The final bid for Chief Officer at the Keeneland January horses of all ages auction Wednesday was $750,000, but it came from someone working for her owner, Egyptian entrepreneur Ahmed Zayat.
Edgar Prado guided Kinsman Stable's homebred Classic Campaign through a tight hole in deep stretch to win the $75,000 Fort Lauderdale Stakes in an exciting upset on the Gulfstream Park lawn Saturday.
Odds-on choice Pommes Frites notched her fifth win of the year in sharp fashion Sunday, sweeping past the pacesetter Virden mid-stretch and rolling to victory in the $112,300 Athenia Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares on the Belmont Park inner turf course.
The $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational Handicap (gr. IT), to be contested over 10 furlongs Oct. 7 at Belmont Park, looks to be a clash between the consistent Honey Ryder and the ever-improving Angara.
Even-money favorite Old Forester got up in the final two strides to win the $150,000 Cliff Hanger Stakes (gr. IIIT) by a nose over 40-1 shot Tune of the Spirit on opening night at the Meadowlands Friday.
Chief Officer broke right to the front and never looked back on her way to a 5 1/2-length victory in the $250,518 New York Breeders' Futurity at Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack in Farmington, N.Y., on Monday.
Live Oak Plantation's Irish-bred My Typhoon, under a masterful pacesetting ride from Garrett Gomez, captured the $200,000 Ballston Spa (gr. IIT) for fillies and mares on the Saratoga inner turf course Saturday.
Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott enjoyed his 53rd birthday in grand style Saturday when the 5-year-old mare Angara got up in the final couple of strides to win the $500,000 Diana Handicap (gr. IT) on a yielding Saratoga turf course.
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