Things have been working out for Victor Espinoza lately; the $500,000 Gold Cup (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park was the most recent example.
Island Town led out of the gate and prevailed in a bumpy finish in the Matt Winn Stakes (gr. III) June 13 at Churchill Downs.
The top three Kentucky Derby finishers have only all hit the board in the Preakness twice since Affirmed, Alydar, and Believe It filled the frame in both races in 1978.
Judging by the final results of Fasig-Tipton's Florida sale of 2-year-olds in training at Gulfstream Park March 4, the sales company's decision to return its select offering to South Florida was clearly a winning one.
Three horses breezed an eighth-mile in :09 4/5 at the under-tack preview for the Barretts selected 2-year-old sale Feb. 20, the quickest of the day at the Fairplex Park racetrack in Pomona, Calif.
Godolphin Racing's Maftool outfought Mubtaahij through the straight to prevail by a head in the $250,000 UAE 2000 Guineas Sponsored by Al Tayer Motors (UAE-III) on the night of Feb. 12 at Meydan Racecourse.
Brilliant 4-year-old Futura landed South Africa's prestigious J&B Met (SAf-I) Jan. 31 at Kenilworth in Cape Town, earning a second straight victory at the group I level.
Albano was expected to ace the Louisiana Handicap in his Jan. 17 return to the races, but it was longshot Hard Aces who notched his first stakes score at odds of 9-1 in the $75,000 Fair Grounds event.
When Easter Gift finished a solid third to eventual 3-year-old champion Will Take Charge and Game On Dude in last year's Clark Handicap (gr. I), trainer Chad Brown was hoping that big things could be on the horizon.
About midway through the fourth session of the Keeneland November breeding stock sale Nov. 7, a Hard Spun mare named Harriet, in foal to Uncle Mo, had registered the highest price of $350,000.
Darley's roster of 14 stallions in America will be led by top stallion Medaglia d'Oro who has sired 11 group/grade I winners to date, including 2014 grade I winners Lochte and Coffee Clique.
- By Frank Angst
After overwhelming rivals in the TVG Pacific Classic Stakes (gr. I) in his first stakes start against older horses, Shared Belief appears poised to make a run at history. read blog
Big John B, a $50,000 claim in April, qualified for the Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) with a runaway victory in the $200,000 Del Mar Handicap (gr. IIT) Aug. 22.
Hardest Core, a 4-year-old Hard Spun gelding trained by Edward Graham and ridden by Eriluis Vaz, upset Arlington's biggest day at 11-1 to secure his first graded stakes score in the Arlington Million (gr. IT).
Centennial Farms' Wicked Strong breezed a half mile in :48 3/5 over the Oklahoma training track at Saratoga Race Course Aug. 8 in preparation for his expected start in the Travers Stakes (gr. I) in two weeks.
Hard Spun, one of an elite group of stallions to sire at least two grade I winners in North America in 2014, will return to Darley's Jonabell Farm in Kentucky for the 2015 breeding season after a successful season in Japan.
After a somewhat disappointing Triple Crown campaign, Wicked Strong started the second half of his sophomore season in fine style, defeating Tonalist in the $600,000 Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II) July 26 at Saratoga.
Jimmy Jerkens will send his top 3-year-old to the July 26 Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II) en route to the Travers Stakes (gr. I), and puts blinkers on the Hard Spun colt for his Saratoga outing.
Hip No.'s 201-400 catalogued in the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. June sale of 2-year-olds in training and horses of racing age sale breezed at the Ocala Training Center in Florida June 10
In preparations similar to trainer Nick Zito's handling of Birdstone between his off-the-board Kentucky Derby (gr. I) finish and his victory in the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), Wicked Strong appears to be progressing.
Jockey Paco Lopez booted home a Monmouth Park record seven winners May 17, although the $103,000 Red Bank Stakes (gr. IIIT) eluded him when Hard Enough scored a 9-1 upset on the turf.
Wicked Strong can claim a pedigree with speed, class, and stamina on both sides, making his future prospects intriguing.
An assistant to Larry Jones said April 20 the trainer had shown improvement from injuries he sustained the previous day when thrown from a horse at Delaware Park.
Reload charged up the rail and snatched victory from pacesetter Mr. Online in the $150,000 Canadian Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) Feb. 22 at Gulfstream Park.
Led by $310,000 broodmare prospect Lady Kierkegaard, Keeneland's January sale continued its solid performance and posted gains across the board on day three.
Hard Spun, a grade I winner and sire of many top-class racehorses, including 2012 champion 3-year-old filly Questing, will stand the 2014 breeding season at Sheikh Mohammed's Darley stud in Japan.
by John P. Sparkman
Curlin has not made the fastest start at stud with his first crop of 3-year-olds, but the victory of Palace Malice in the 145th Belmont Stakes June 8 gave him a first-crop classic winner.
Robert LaPenta's Easter Gift took the $250,000 Mountainview Handicap on dirt while Mr. Amore Stable's Tightend Touchdown scorched the grass in his victory in the $150,000 Pennsylvania Governor's Cup Handicap June 1.
Rick Porter has seen both Hard Spun and Eight Belles finish second in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I). He's hoping Normandy Invasion can make his patented late run to get to the Derby wire first.
Mario Pino, winner of the 2013 Santa Anita George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, will accept the award in a winner's circle ceremony between races April 14 at Santa Anita Park.
Veteran Maryland-based rider Mario Pino is the winner of the 2013 George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, which recognizes riders for top career achievement and personal character.
Darley in America will hold a series of online stallion season auctions to Medaglia d'Oro, Hard Spun, and Lonhro for the 2013 breeding season.
Robert LaPenta's 3-year-old colt Easter Gift proved best in the Sept. 3 Smarty Jones Stakes (gr. III) at Parx Racing when he drew off in the final furlong to win the mile-and-70 yard contest in the slop.
The Aug. 27 Fasig-Tipton Texas yearling sale, to start at 4 p.m., offers a 170-lot catalog that includes 47 Texas-breds, 27 Oklahoma-breds, and 65 Louisiana-breds.
It's a good time to be Kiaran McLaughlin, but don't confuse that with an easy time. The trainer has his hands full conditioning and placing top runners for Godolphin Racing with year-end goals in mind.
Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin still was excited the morning after Questing's dazzling nine-length victory in the Alabama Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 18 at Saratoga Race Course.
Grade I winner Zo Impressive was resting comfortably in her stall Aug. 19, the day after suffering a condylar fracture in her right front leg while running fourth in the Alabama Stakes (gr. I).
Questing turned in a dazzling performance Aug. 18 in the $600,000 Alabama Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course, blazing the first half-mile in :46.01 and still pulling away to take the 1 1/4-mile test by nine lengths.
Godolphin Racing's Questing earned the first grade I win of her career and gave 19-year-old jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. the same when she took the $300,000 TVG Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) July 21 at Saratoga.
Live Oak Plantation's Zo Impressive took the $300,000 Mother Goose Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park June 23 when 1-2 favorite Contested faded badly and Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Believe You Can failed to menace.
A filly by Exclusive Quality and colts by Bernstein and Unbridled's Song sped eighths in :10 flat, fastest at the distance at the first session of the Under Tack Show for Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's 2012 June sale.
Anita Cauley's homebred On Fire Baby cuts back to a one-turn mile at Belmont Park in the May 28 TVG Acorn Stakes (gr. I). The Smoke Glacken filly was a disappointing fifth as the second choice in the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
This year's sloppy renewal of The Cliff's Edge Derby Trial lacked a Kentucky Derby hopeful but may have produced a classic prospect in Hierro.
The next edition of the live podcast Talkin' Horses with The Blood-Horse.com will feature trainer Larry Jones, who conditioned Havre de Grace to a Horse of the Year title in 2011.
The offspring of Hard Spun were popular among buyers Jan. 17 as the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. winter mixed sale began its two-day run in Florida with a consignor preferred session and a new horses of racing age section.
Red Roy, an unraced 3-year-old filly, turned in the fastest three-furlong work of the day Jan. 16 during the under tack show for the new horses of racing age section of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. winter mixed sale.
The under tack show for the new horses of racing age section of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's 2012 Winter Mixed Sale is set for Jan. 16 at 10 a.m. The Winter Mixed Sale begins a two-day run Jan. 17.
Top spot on the leading first-year sire list came down to New Year's Eve read blog
Ashford Stud stallion Scat Daddy not only took the 2011 first-crop sires' championship with $1,521,410 in progeny earning but also topped the freshman list in other categories.
ReRun announced its annual holiday auction of Moneighs will take place now through Dec. 4 on Ebay. The original, abstract, 16" x 20" paintings are created by some of North America's most prominent Thoroughbreds.
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