Lenny Shulman and Steve Haskin examine the Santa Anita Handicap field, the history and memorable horses. Steve and Lenny recap the Gotham Stakes, rivalries, Del Mar's dirt and interview trainer Nick Zito about Spot. watch video
If all goes as planned, the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 8 will feature a rematch between the top two finishers in last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) in Mucho Macho Man and Will Take Charge.
Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) winner Strong Mandate returns to action for the first time since the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) in the $300,000 Southwest Stakes (gr. III) Feb. 17 at Oaklawn Park.
Will Take Charge will be on his way to becoming a handicap star if he aces this test as the 123-pound highweight. Runners to face him Feb. 9 include Revolutionary, Lea, River Seven, Uncaptured, and Bourbon Courage.
Champion Will Take Charge arrived by van early the morning of Feb. 4 at Gulfstream Park, where he is slated to make his 2014 debut in the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) on Feb. 9.
Steve Haskin chooses one Kentucky Derby contender to examine each week. This week Steve examines the Hopeful Stakes winner Strong Mandate.
Newly minted 3-year-old champion Will Take Charge breezed a half-mile Feb. 2 at Oaklawn Park in preparation for his expected start in the $500,00 Donn Handicap (gr. I) Feb. 9 at Gulfstream Park.
Will Take Charge, recently crowned 3-year-old champion male, will be the 123-pound highweight for his 4-year-old debut, the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) on Feb. 9 at Gulfstream Park.
Will Take Charge remains on course for his 2014 debut in the $500,000 Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park Feb. 9, but a start in the March 29 Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) is unlikely, owner Willis Horton says.
Wise Dan, the 2013 Horse of the Year, became the first horse to win three championships in consecutive years.
John Oxley's Coastline looks to rebound from an eighth-place finish in the Delta Jackpot (gr. III) as one of 10 3-year-olds entered for the $150,000 Smarty Jones Stakes Jan. 20 at Oaklawn Park.
Three runners who delivered remarkably different campaigns in 2013 face off for Horse of the Year honors at the Jan. 18 Eclipse Awards, highlighting the open-for-interpretation nature of the category.
In a year when the 3-year-old male leaderboard kept changing by the month, it should come as no surprise that a horse like Will Take Charge, who excelled from August to November, be the frontrunner for the Eclipse Award.
Led by Horse of the Year candidates Mucho Macho Man, Will Take Charge, and 2012 Horse of the Year Wise Dan, the finalists for the 2013 Eclipse Awards were announced Jan. 8.
D. Wayne Lukas, the most successful trainer in the history of horse racing, will be honored with the Eclipse Award of Merit for a lifetime of outstanding achievement in the Thoroughbred industry.
Three Chimneys Farm has secured a 50% interest in multiple grade I-winning 3-year-old Will Take Charge, this year's favorite for the Eclipse Award as 3-year-old male champion and also a Horse of the Year candidate.
Owner Willis Horton isn't in a hurry to make a deal for likely 3-year-old champion Will Take Charge, and hasn't signed stud contracts or partnership agreements for the chestnut son of Unbridled's Song, he said Dec. 19.
- By Steve Haskin
Lenny Shulman and Steve Haskin present the 2013 Offy Awards. Sponsored by Darby Dan Farm. Watch Video
Willis Horton's Will Take Charge was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at the Churchill Downs barn of trainer D. Wayne Lukas the morning after winning the Nov. 29 Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I).
If Will Take Charge hadn't secured an Eclipse Award as the nation's top 3-year-old already, his determined head victory over multiple grade I winner Game On Dude in the Clark Handicap (gr. I) Nov. 29 certainly wrapped it up.
- By Claire Novak
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas and owner Willis Horton discuss Will Take Charge's win the 2013 Clark Handicap. Watch Video
- By Claire Novak
Claire Novak asks, 'What are you thankful for in horse racing this season?' read blog
Multiple grade I winner Game On Dude and Travers (gr. I) victor Will Take Charge both drew well for the $500,000-added Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I) to be held Nov. 29 at Churchill Downs.
Willis Horton's Will Take Charge, gearing up for a bid in the Nov. 29 Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I), breezed five furlongs Nov. 22 at Churchill Downs in 1:01 for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas.
Trainer had been weighing options for Golden Ticket that included a possible run in the Cigar Mile (gr. I) before he settled on staying home for a Clark bid.
Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) runner-up Will Take Charge breezed four furlongs Nov. 16 at Churchill Downs in preparation for the $500,000 Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare Nov. 29.
A nose loss to Mucho Macho Man in the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic (Grade I) at Santa Anita Park by Willis D. Horton's Will Take Charge might not be the late-blooming sophomore's final race of the season.
The buzz is rising. It's Breeders' Cup Friday, and if you can't enjoy horse racing's Super Bowl at Santa Anita, you might as well get out of the sport. read blog
There weren't any audible groans when post positions were drawn for the Nov. 2 Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), but with a field of 13--one short of the maximum permitted--the run to the first turn could prove critical.
Horsemen said Oct. 28 they like racing at Santa Anita and appreciate improvements in the clubhouse and grandstand, but conditions in the barn area leave something to be desired.
Trainer Eric Guillot officially apologized to fellow conditioner D. Wayne Lukas for triggering an investigation into his allegations jockey Luis Saez used an electrical device on Will Take Charge in the Travers Stakes.
An infographic celebrating the Breeders' Cup 30th Anniversary. view infographic
Calumet Farm's Oxbow, winner of this year's Preakness Stakes (gr. I), has been retired and will begin his stud career at Taylor Made Stallions in Central Kentucky. The son of Awesome Again will stand for $20,000.
Tight race for 3-year-old champion male read blog
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas became the oldest trainer, at 77, to saddle a winner at the Breeders' Cup when he sent Hightail to an upset victory in the 2012 Juvenile Sprint; at 27, Craig Dollase won the 1998 Sprint with Reraise.
- By Ron Mitchell
Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas discusses Will Take Charge, Fast Bullet, Strong Mandate and more Breeders' Cup contenders. Watch Video
Listen to Steve Haskin ask D. Wayne Lukas about the meaning of the Breeders' Cup experience, most memorable victories, and if the Breeders' Cup Juvenile is a Kentucky Derby prep race. listen to podcast
Images from the Breeders' Cup career of D. Wayne Lukas. view slideshow
Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) contenders livened up the worktabs at Santa Anita Park and Churchill Downs Oct. 8, as Game On Dude cruised around his California base and Fort Larned and Will Take Charge drilled in Kentucky.
An investigation by New York regulators and the New York State Police has cleared jockey Luis Saez of allegations that he carried an electronic device when he rode Will Take Charge to victory in the Aug. 24 Travers Stakes.
Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) winner takes on brilliant maiden winners Honor Code and Havana in $500,000 headline event for 2-year-olds Oct. 5 at Belmont Park.
- By Ron Mitchell
Trainer discusses first meeting as member of Ky. Horse Racing Commission. Watch Video
Three of the most accomplished 2-year-olds on the grounds turned in major training moves at Churchill Downs Sunday Sept. 22 in preparation for what their connections hope will be a trip to the Breeders' Cup.
Willis D. Horton's Will Take Charge has long been referred to as a horse who makes one powerful run, and on Sept. 21 that run landed him in the Parx Racing winner's circle with a victory in the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby.
Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) winner Strong Mandate bounced of his most recent win 11 days ago with a bullet half-mile breeze Sept. 13 at Churchill Downs, leaving his Hall of Fame trainer, D. Wayne Lukas, to marvel afterward.
Strong Mandate turned in a dominant performance in the $300,000 Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course, winning for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas on the renowned horseman's 78th birthday Sept. 2 at the Spa.
Ahmed Zayat hopes to make an early trip to the winner's circle in the Forego Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 31, just before Paynter continues on his comeback trail in the featured Woodward (gr. I).
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas is keeping the logical options open for Travers (gr. I) winner Will Take Charge, who could next go in the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup (gr. I) or the Pennsylvania Derby (gr. II).
- By Vic Zast
Student learns from mentor that hope is a powerful tool. read blog
Willis Horton's Will Take Charge finally got the big one, and did so at the expense of the country's top 3-year-olds in the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 24 at Saratoga Race Course.
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