Bred with an abundance of speed, Bustin Stones is expected to be a top contender for the title of top sprinter throughout the year. Not only is the son of City Zip fast, showing great courage and grit in battling off a Executive Fleet virtually gate to wire in the Carter Handicap (gr. I), he is also tough. Bustin Stones is back in the racing game after having surgery on both knees.
Many top stallions began their stud careers in the regional markets, like City Zip, whose national profile is improving because of runners like General George Handicap (gr. II) winner Bustin Stones. City Zip began at Contemporary Stallions in New York and now stands at Lane's End Farm near Versailles, KY. The son of Carson City has sired nine stakes winners and a total of 21 stakes horses from his first 141 starters.
A mystery illness has claimed the life of Equirace.com's With a City, winner of the $500,000 Lane's End (gr. II) at Turfway Park and an expected starter in the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) on May 6 at Churchill Downs.
With a City, the longest price in the field of 12 at odds of 48-1, split horses in the stretch and came home strongest of all to record a 1 1/4-length win in the $500,000 Lane's End Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Turfway Park Saturday.
Grade I winner City Zip, who made his farewell race in the Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) for the partnership of Charles Thompson, Carl Bowling, and Lakland Farm, has been retired from racing and will enter stud at Gus Schoenborn Jr.'s Contemporary Stallions near Coxsackie, N.Y.
It was a busy morning for Breeders' Cup participants, with a steady stream of workers Sunday. The most amazing move was turned in by Squirtle Squirt, although it certainly was not what trainer Bobby Frankel was expecting.
Overbrook Farm's D. Wayne Lukas trainee Snow Ridge led through the opening half-mile, fell a half-length behind City Zip in the stretch, then came back on that rival to win Saturday's $147,500 Kentucky Cup Sprint Stakes (gr. II) at Turfway Park.
Trainer Bobby Frankel earned another grade I victory Saturday when Squirtle Squirt went wire-to-wire to win the $200,000 King's Bishop Stakes at Saratoga. For Frankel, the win marks his third grade I stakes victory of the Saratoga meeting.
City Zip is already a legend in his own time at Saratoga. He earned that status last year by becoming the fourth horse in history to win all three of Saratoga's top juvenile races -- the Saratoga Special, the Sanford (gr. II), and the Hopeful (gr. I).
Dream Supreme and City Zip are prominent among 21 sprint stars from major racing centers nationwide assembling to face 26 local stars in the five stakes races worth more than $1 million to be run on Saturday's 'Summit of Speed' program at Calder Race Course.
More than 40 top sprinters from around the country are set to square off Saturday in the "Summit of Speed" program at Calder Race Course. The five-stakes program is highlighted by the Princess Rooney Handicap and Azalea Breeders' Cup Stakes, both grade III events.
City Zip, whose greatest career achievements have come in sprint races, celebrated the Fourth of July Wednesday at Monmouth Park by rolling to victory in the six-furlong Jersey Shore Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) before a holiday crowd of 21,403.
Songandaprayer will face City Zip as the 122-pound co-highweight in Wednesday's Jersey Shore Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III), the third race on Monmouth Park's 10-race holiday card. The six-furlong sprint marks the first race for Songandaprayer since finishing 13th in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I).
Cutting back to a one-turn sprint after running sixth in Point Given's San Felipe (gr. II), Greystone Stable and Vincenzo LoVerso's Skip to the Stone pressed the pace before drawing away to win Saturday's $150,000 Bay Shore Stakes (gr. III) for 3-year-olds at Aqueduct.
City Zip turns back to seven furlongs in the grade III $150,000 Bay Shore for 3-year-olds at Aqueduct on the Wood Memorial under card, after running four of his last five races in routes on the Triple Crown trail.
Now, we're not one to indulge in hyperbole, but the fact is, Monarchos was a million lengths the best in Saturday's Florida Derby. OK, so we will indulge once in a while. After all the waiting, listening to nothing but faint rumblings, the smoldering volcano finally has erupted. Although metaphoric cataclysms on the Derby trail normally signify uplifting events, such as Monarchos' explosive display, that is not true when mentioning Sunday's Louisiana Derby. This was more like an earthquake that nearly swallowed up favorites Dollar Bill and Hero's Tribute.
It will go down in Florida Derby (gr. I) history as "The Move." As a dozen tightly-bunched 3-year-olds jostled for position nearing the far turn in the golden anniversary edition of the Florida Derby, one horse was running by the rest of the field with electrifying ease. THE horse, making THE move, was Monarchos.
For a million-dollar purse, and with no clear-cut favorite, it's no surprise that 13 horses passed the entry box for Saturday's grade I Florida Derby. The likely choices will be Songandaprayer, Monarchos, and Outofthebox. The only real surprises in the field are California invader Trailthefox, last year's Arlington-Washington Futurity winner who was supposed to stay in sprint races, and the Nick Zito-trained It's So Simple, an impressive allowance winner at the meet whom Zito called "the best kept secret on the backstretch."
Fountain of Youth Stakes winner Songandaprayer was on the track for a serious seven-furlong trial on Thursday. With jockey Edgar Prado in the saddle, Songandaprayer was clocked in 1:23 4/5 handily and is on schedule for his appearance in the $1 million Florida Derby for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles here on March 10. Songandaprayer went in fractions of :36 1/5 for three furlongs, :47 4/5 for the half-mile, :59 4/5 for five furlongs, 1:23 4/5 for seven furlongs and galloped out a mile in 1:38 3/5.
With the final major preview event in the books, the field for Gulfstream Park's $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) on March 10 is starting to take shape. The top three finishers in last week's grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes – Songandaprayer, Outofthebox and City Zip – are expected to top a field of eight or nine in the 50th anniversary running of the Florida Derby, centerpiece of the winter meeting for 3-year-olds.
One of the most intriguing Fountain of Youth Stakes in memory is set for this Saturday, as 11 top-class horses from all over the country converge on Gulfstream Park for the first major 3-year-old prep of the season. Favoritism will be up for grabs in this competitive 1 1/16-mile event, as a case can be made for several of the participants.
Traffic will increase on the road to Gulfstream Park's $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) next week as a field of 10, including some West Coast invaders, assembles for the grade I Fountain of Youth Stakes. The 1 1/16-mile Fountain on Saturday, Feb. 17, serves as the final major prep for the 50th anniversary running of the Florida Derby and the 3-year-old classics beyond.
The cry of "Go, Big Blue" resounded throughout the New York area on Super Bowl Sunday. Although it was silenced following the New York Giants' defeat to the Baltimore Ravens, don't be surprised if it is resurrected by Gang Godolphin around the first Saturday in May. That's when Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum and his faithful followers will invade Churchill Downs bearing gifts and exuding confidence. Boxloads of Godolphin jackets, shirts, and caps will turn Churchill Downs into a sea of blue. Over the past two years, three members of Maktoum's Marauders made it to the starting gate on Derby Day, their coats shining like burnished copper. But there really wasn't a Derby horse beneath those glistening exteriors.
A field of 11, led by City Zip and Yonaguska, has been entered for Saturday's Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park. The seven-furlong, $150,000 race is the third leg in the series of races leading up to the Florida Derby. City Zip, a multiple grade II winner, is the 122-pound topweight in the Hutcheson. Yonaguska, who finished in dead heat with City Zip for first in the Hopeful Stakes, will tote 119.
City Zip, the speedy Carson City colt who vaulted to national prominence last summer by becoming the first horse in 40 years to sweep Saratoga's major 2-year-old stakes, arrived in South Florida last Sunday to prepare for Saturday's grade II Hutcheson Stakes. Meanwhile, Daring Pegasus will be seeking his second straight stakes victory when he starts in the Hutcheson, his first start outside the state of Kentucky.
As a Kentucky-born lover of Thoroughbred racing, Beau Greely counts his Kentucky Derby Day victory by Manndar in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (GI) as one of the special moments in his young career. But that victory could drop a notch on his personal highlight reel if he has the Breeders' Cup Day he is hoping for at Churchill Downs on Nov. 4.
A weekend full of top quality Breeders' Cup-prep racing left blemishes on several records. Gold Mover and Perfect Sting, both undefeated in 2000 prior to Oct. 14, each recorded a loss on the unofficial Breeders' Cup preview weekend. However, Raging Fever remained undefeated after Saturday's Frizette (gr. I) victory over Out of Sync. Raging Fever could take her five wins into the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I).