Just Jack, a consistent 3-year-old homebred for Dr. Michael Harrison, will face the stiffest test of his young career Saturday when he takes on older rivals in the $150,000 Million Classic at a mile and a furlong.
The Laurel Park summer meet training title ended up in a tie between Tim Keefe and Hamilton Smith, but jockey Jevian Toledo easily captured the riding title.
Popular Ben's Cat won the battle but lost the war when Talk Show Man caught the gallant favorite in the final strides of the $126,250 Maryland Million Turf Oct. 19 at Laurel Park.
With three weeks left until the Haskell Invitational (gr. I), seven sophomores will attempt to burnish their credentials for the $1 million event at Monmouth Park with a victory in the Long Branch Stakes July 8.
Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) contender Done Talking zipped five furlongs in a bullet 1:01 at Laurel Park April 28.
Illinois Derby (gr. III) winner Done Talking breezed four furlongs at Laurel Park April 21 in preparation for the $2 million Kentucky Derby (gr. I) in two weeks.
With Sheldon Russell aboard for trainer Hamilton Smith, Skeedattle Stable's Done Talking ran down Morgan's Guerrilla in the final yards to post a 12-1 upset in the $500,000 Illinois Derby (gr. III) April 7 at Hawthorne.
With Maryland racing in limbo for 2011, trainers based in the state could soon be faced with a simple but important question to answer: Where will they race their horses?
Boosted by a 20% increase in import simulcasting handle, Colonial Downs concluded its 40-day meet July 21 with a 13.2% increase in all-source wagering.
The Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association has announced its award winners for 2009:
Colonial Downs' 40-day summer race meet came to a close the night of July 28, as the leading trainer, owner, jockey, and apprentice rider were all awarded for their successes.
William Backer's homebred filly Blind Date came from off the pace to take a short advantage in mid-stretch, then narrowly outdueled Shared Account to win the $150,000 Virginia Oaks (gr. IIIT) by a head July 18 at Colonial Downs.
Humoristic, the longest shot on the board in the $150,000 Violet Stakes (gr. IIIT) on the Meadowlands turf the night of Sept. 28, closed best of all to upset odds-on favorite Roshani and Pommes Frites in an eventful run.
- By Nick Hahn
The handle at Colonial Downs increased a bit over its 2006 mark, while a moderate summer helped boost attendance at the central Virginia track, which concluded its 11th season of racing on Aug. 7.
Laurel Park's new dirt track opened for training Sunday and about 140 horses took the opportunity to test the new surface. Twenty-two official workouts were recorded.
Having added four additional days of racing to its lineup in 2004, Virginia's Colonial Downs posted all-time total attendance and handle records, and reported a rise in the average daily on-track handle.
- By Ron Mitchell
Having added four additional days of racing to its lineup in 2004, Virginia's Colonial Downs this week posted all-time total attendance and handle records, and reported a rise in the average daily on-track handle. Track officials noted slight declines from prior years in average daily attendance and in out-of state wagering figures.
William M. Backer's Art Fan registered an authoritative front-running score in the inaugural running of the $200,000 Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs on Saturday July 10.
Two-time leading trainer Hamilton Smith became the second trainer in Colonial Downs history to reach the $1-million mark in purse earnings when his charge Mittens won the $14,000 third race June 14.
The $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship Wednesday at Laurel Park figured to be a one horse affair, but when that one horse faltered, the door opened for Pour It On, who rallied along the rail to post a 36-1 upset score.
Colonial Downs near New Kent, Va., ended its seventh Thoroughbred meet with records in total handle, on-track handle, and daily average total handle.
Colonial Downs concluded its seventh annual Thoroughbred meet with a wet and wild closing day card which saw the final two races of the meet canceled by a torrential thunderstorm and pyrotechnic lightning display.
The Virginia track ended its meet with increases in attendance and handle.
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