The McCraken that inspires confidence from trainer Ian Wilkes is the one that showed up in the June 17 Matt Winn Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs, unleashing his typical kick after ranging up on the final turn en route to a 2 1/4-length triumph.
Janis Whitham homebred Walkabout secured her first stakes win when she rallied from ninth place and 15 1/2 lengths back under jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. to secure a neck victory in the $100,000 Matron Stakes (G3) May 20 at Churchill Downs.
Janis Whitham's homebred son of Ghostzapper worked a seemingly effortless five furlongs in 1:00 at Keeneland March 20 in preparation for a Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (G2) start.
Until now, the Whithams' best runners have primarily been older horses, but 2016 marked a change. In addition to McCraken, they own Linda, a four-year-old filly who captured the Mrs. Revere (Gr. II) at Churchill Downs last year.
Unbeaten multiple graded stakes winner McCraken will miss the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby (G2) March 11 after emerging from a four-furlong move Feb. 27 with a slight strain to his left front ankle.
The first sophomore step for McCraken will come when he makes his seasonal bow in the 1 1/16-mile Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) at Tampa Bay Downs Feb. 11, trainer Ian Wilkes said after the colt worked five furlongs in 1:00.45 Jan. 25.
The build up around McCraken live up to the billing in the 1 1/16 miles Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes as Janis Whitham's homebred used his big turn of foot to edge clear late under Brian Hernandez Jr. and remain unbeaten in three career starts.
After dueling in early stretch with grade I winner Harmonize, Linda found another gear in the final furlong to register a clear win in the $200,000 Mrs. Revere Stakes (gr. IIT) at Churchill Downs.
Adena Springs Farm announced Nov. 1 that 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned would enter stud at the Paris, Ky., farm after he defends his title in this year's Classic Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park.
Janis Whitham's Fort Larned completed serious preparation for this week's bid for consecutive victories in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park with a five-furlong workout Oct. 28 at Churchill Downs.
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.
Owner/breeder Janis Whitham's Fort Larned, winner of the 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), prepped for another shot at the race with a wire-to-wire score in the inaugural $191,275 Homecoming Classic at Churchill Sept. 28.
On the final Saturday of Churchill Downs' "Homecoming" meet, the Louisville track will offer up a competitive field of nine 3-year-olds in the Jefferson Cup (gr. IIIT) and the first edition of the Homecoming Classic Stakes.
One of the gems on Churchill Downs' new September meet schedule will serve as a well-timed prep for Fort Larned as he prepares for a defense of his 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) victory.
Trainer Ian Wilkes said Sept. 17 that Fort Larned, winner of last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), will have his final prep for this year's Classic in the newly established Homecoming Classic at Churchill Downs.
Janis Whitham's defending Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned returned to the track Sept. 7 at Churchill Downs to resume preparations for a bid at consecutive victories in the Classic.
Janis Whitham's homebred Fort Larned and Morton Fink's homebred Successful Dan both worked Aug. 20 at Saratoga Race Course in preparation for the $750,000 Woodward (gr. I) on Aug. 31.
Janis Whitham's 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned was assigned post 3 and installed as the 7-5 morning-line favorite over seven others for the Aug. 3 Whitney Invitational (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course.
On a rainy day at Saratoga Race Course, 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned breezed five furlongs in 1:01.19 over the sloppy main track.
Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned put his early season problems behind him June 15 as he scored a front-running victory in the $536,300 Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs.
After monitoring Fort Larned for the past few days, trainer Ian Wilkes said he is pleased with the manner in which the 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic winner has emerged from his fall in the March 9 Gulfstream Park Handicap.
Fort Larned, who has not started since his gutsy victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), will face five opponents when he makes his 5-year-old debut March 9 in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. I).
Horse of the Year finalist Fort Larned breezed a half-mile in 48 2/5 on the morning of Jan. 18 at Palm Meadows Training Center, his first recorded workout since his victory in last fall's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I).
Five of the seven Breeders' Cup winners with Churchill Downs ties will be paraded beneath the Twin Spires Nov. 11.
Trainer Ian Wilkes plans to give Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Fort Larned a break after his taxing effort Nov. 3 and is hoping to return to Santa Anita Park next fall for the 30th World Champinships in 2013.
In his final major training move for the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park, Whitney Handicap (gr. I) winner Fort Larned breezed a bullet five furlongs in 1:00 2/5 Oct. 28 at Churchill Downs.
Whitney Invitational Handicap (gr. I) winner Fort Larned turned in his final serious work Sept. 23 for the upcoming $1 million TVG Jockey Club Gold Cup Invitational (gr. I), covering five furlongs in 1:01.04.
Lenny and Steve discuss Allen Jerkens and Emma's Encore, Janis Whitham and Fort Larned, Dullahan and Hansen, the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Selected Yearling Sale, and the Mansion at Churchill Downs. Sponsored by Darby Dan Farm. Watch Video
Trainer Ian Wilkes reported that Fort Larned was a tired but happy horse the day after his breakthrough victory in the Whitney Invitational Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course Aug. 4.
Fort Larned, left alone on an easy pace, turned back heavy favorite Successful Dan in the lane to post an easy three-length triumph in the $300,000 Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Handicap (gr. III) in Iowa June 30.
Jockey Calvin Borel, leading rider during Churchill Downs' current fall meet, sustained multiple fractures to his right wrist and was scheduled to undergo surgery at Norton Audubon Hospital in Louisville, Ky., after being thrown from his horse in the fifth race on Churchill's Thanksgiving Day card Nov. 23.
Summer Symphony notched her first stakes victory when she rallied for a half-length victory over entry-mate Socorro County in the $174,087 British Columbia Breeders' Cup Oaks (Can-III) at Hastings Park.
Edward P. Evans' homebred millionaire Summer Colony, the first and one of two horses to beat Azeri, has arrived at her owner's Spring Hill Farm near Casanova, Va., following her retirement.
A full field of 10 turf sprinters will contest the $100,000 Shakertown Stakes (gr. IIIT) on the Blue Grass undercard at Keeneland Saturday.
Juddmonte Farms' Sightseek makes her grade I debut Saturday in the $200,000 seven furlong Santa Monica Handicap at Santa Anita.
Affluent faces a small but quality-laden field Saturday as she seeks to become just the third filly to sweep Santa Anita's La Canada series of three stakes races for 4-year-old fillies. The daughter of Affirmed has already notched wins in the grade I La Brea Stakes and the grade II El Encino. Only Taisez Vous, in 1978, and Mitterand, in 1985, have accomplished the sweep.
Affluent squeezed through a narrow opening on the inside and won a fierce stretch battle over Royally Chosen in the $150,000 El Encino Stakes on Sunday at Santa Anita Park.
Gary Stevens, who had an eventful Belmont Stakes week, will return from a five-day break to ride Mike Pegram's Love At Noon in the $100,000 Princess Stakes (Gr. II) at Hollywood Park Saturday.
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