Five weeks after giving everything he had to win the Suburban Handicap (gr. I) by a neck over Newfoundland, Edmund Gann's Peace Rules will have his work cut out for him once again as he faces a field with quick speed horses in Saturday's 77th running of the $750,000 Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga.
Jockey Jerry Bailey and trainer Bill Mott, once the hottest combination on the national stage, still form a powerful duo in the Bernard Baruch Handicap. They won the $150,000 event for the fifth time in seven years when Silver Tree prevailed over even-money favorite Nothing to Lose on a yielding Saratoga turf course Friday.
A group of 11 2-year-olds has been entered for the 91st running of the Sanford Stakes (gr. II) on Thursday at Saratoga's famed Race Course. Known for its annual showcasing of quality youngsters, the Spa's second day of racing has a crack line-up of 2-year-old colts going six furlongs in the Sanford, headed by multiple stakes winner Lunarpal.
Pollard's Vision, ridden for the first time by Jerry Bailey, drove past a stubborn Britt's Jules with 70 yards to go and pulled away to win the $250,000 Leonard Richards (gr. III) for 3-year-olds on a sloppy Delaware Park track Sunday.
Golden Eagle Farm's Yearly Report and jockey Jerry Bailey repelled upset-minded Ender's Sister in deep stretch to win the $500,000 Delaware Oaks (gr. II) Saturday at Delaware Park.
Champali set a fast pace but had enough left to hold off the late challenge of Clock Stopper by a nose in an exciting four-horse photo finish to the $500,000 Smile Sprint Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Race Course Saturday.
Sackatoga Stable's Funny Cide, who just two weeks ago was beaten a head in the $500,000 MassCap (gr. II) at Suffolk Downs, has drawn the rail for Saturday's Suburban Handicap (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
Six talented fillies will contest Saturday's $300,000 Mother Goose (gr. I) at Belmont Park, including the top two finishers from the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I), Ashado and Island Sand. The other two legs of the Triple Tiara include the $500,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) on July 24th, and the $750,000 Alabama (gr. I) on Aug. 21st.
Juddmonte Farms' Sightseek turned in a brilliant performance Saturday in winning the $300,000 Ogden Phipps Handicap (gr. I) at Belmont Park. Champion Azeri faded to finish last by 11 3/4 lengths in her third consecutive defeat.
Mineshaft, Eclipse Award winner as Horse of the Year and best older male, has been named winner of the New York Turf Writers Association's Secretariat Award as New York's Horse of the Year for 2003.
Dogwood Stable is now accepting nominations for its annual Dogwood Dominion Award for an unsung hero in the Thoroughbred industry. Nominations should be received no later than June 28.
Golden Eagle Farm's Yearly Report rated just off a very soft pace, made her move on the far turn and drew away to win the $200,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II), the co-featured event May 14 at Pimlico Race Course.
John D. Gunther's Bending Strings relished a cutback to the seven-furlong distance of the $195,000 Nassau County Breeders' Cup (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies, drawing away for her first graded stakes victory by 4 3/4 lengths at Belmont Park Saturday.
Jockeys John Velazquez and Jose Santos said Wednesday they might not ride in the Kentucky Derby if a federal judge bars them from wearing ads during the race.
The Bobby Frankel-trained Sightseek leads a talented seven-horse field for Friday's $300,000 Louisville Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II), going 1 1/16-mile race on the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) undercard.
- By Victor Ryan
After hearing final arguments Tuesday morning, a federal judge said he will rule on whether to allow jockey advertising in this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) Wednesday morning.
- By Victor Ryan
A federal judge is expected to rule this week on whether jockeys competing in this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) would be allowed to wear corporate advertising on their pants.
This year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) can be broken up into three categories -– Favorites, live longshots, and potential overlays. The favorites are obvious and the longshots will be dealt with at a later date. But if there is one horse who can have bettors pulling their hair out for not having him, it's Wimbledon.
Although the blistering five-furlong works by Smarty Jones and Birdstone dominated the morning activities Saturday, it was the well-conceived plan by Song of the Sword's owner Ernie Paragallo that set several major events in motion.
Long-distance specialist Epicentre emerged from the pack to take the lead in midstretch en route to a decisive victory in the $150,000 Elkhorn Stakes (gr. IIIT) as Keeneland closed its record-breaking 15-day spring meeting Friday.
The moment of truth is at hand, as several Kentucky Derby (gr. I) scenarios are played out over the next couple of days. At Churchill Downs, the biggest activity Friday morning was trying to dodge the rain. But the miserable weather was brightened momentarily by the presence of the unbeaten Smarty Jones.
Juddmonte Farms' Intercontinental, a multiple group one-placed competitor in Europe, won her second straight in the United States Sunday, rolling past the leaders in the final furlong to win the $110,600 Jenny Wiley (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland.
Fountain of Youth (gr. II) winner Read the Footnotes breezed a mile Thursday morning for trainer Richard Violette at the Palm Meadows Training Center, where he continues his preparations for the May 1 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).
A film crew for 60 Minutes II film crew visited the Kentucky Horse Park's Hall of Champions Friday to capture footage of jockey Jerry Bailey's annual visit with the legendary Cigar.
Champion Halfbridled will lead a field of eight in Thursday's $250,000 Stonerside Beaumont Stakes (gr. II) at Keeneland. Halfbridled was entered but scratched from the April 3 Ashland Stakes (gr.I) after tying up after a morning gallop.
Undaunted by a brisk pace battle, Edmund Gann's Peace Rules had more than enough left to win the $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) Saturday by two lengths over Ole Faunty.
Last year trainer Bobby Frankel saddled Medaglia d' Oro to win the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II). This year Frankel hopes Peace Rules, who is listed as even money on the morning-line, can emulate his stablemate's success in Saturday's $500,000 race going 1 1/8-miles.
With plenty of down time left before the flood of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) preps begin on April 3, this is a good opportunity to continue looking for new angles, new faces, and a new perspective on the Derby picture.
The first course is over. It is time to take a deep breath and digest the odd smorgasbord of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) preps that has been laid out so far. Racing fans are starving for something more substantial, and they should get it beginning with the April 3 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) and Illinois Derby (gr. II).
Padua Stables' Class Above made her return to Turfway Park a successful one Saturday, handily winning the $150,000 Boubonette Breeders' Cup for 3-year-old fillies.
Marylou Whitney's Birdstone was installed the even-money favorite against 10 rivals for Saturday's Lane's End Stakes (gr. II) at Turfway Park. The 3-year-old son of Grindstone drew post one for the 1 1/8-mile race.
Marylou Whitney Stables' homebred Birdstone, winner of the grade I Champagne Stakes at Belmont last year, is the talk of Turfway leading up to their signature Kentucky Derby (gr. I) prep, Saturday's Lane's End Stakes (gr. II). However, the diminutive son of Grindstone hasn't exactly scared anyone off from the $500,000 race with as many as 14 others considering the race.
Juddmonte Farms' Sightseek looked like her old self Sunday, demolishing three rivals by 7 1/2 lengths in the $194,000 Rampart Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares at Gulfstream Park.
Bruce Lunsford's 3-year-old filly Madcap Escapade turned the $150,000 Forward Gal (gr. II) against four opponents Saturday into a procession, galloping to a 4 3/4-length front-running victory at Gulfstream Park.
Trainer Bobby Frankel is shipping a quartet of runners for Oaklawn Park's Racing Festival of South, including Peace Rules, who will look to defend the trainer's Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) title. Frankel won the 2003 Oaklawn Handicap with Medaglia d'Oro, who is pointed toward the March 27 Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).
Who are the hot horses at Barretts? Because of wet weather, drag racing, and the delays in the under tack shows, it's difficult to tell. But keep an eye on Sequel's Tiger Ridge colt.
Peace Rules proved to be the toughest in Sunday's controversial Fair Grounds rodeo, also known as the $500,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II), prevailing by a short head over Saint Liam.
Marylou Whitney's Birdstone, winner of his 3-year-old debut in allowance company, may skip the March 13 Florida Derby and run in the following week's $500,000 Lane's End Stakes (gr. II) at Turfway Park instead, trainer Nick Zito said Monday.
Sarah and Kenneth Ramsey's homebred Kitten's Joy showed off his powerful closing kick to win The $100,000 Palm Beach (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park Saturday and remain unbeaten in four starts on the grass.
Three-time leading Gulfstream Park jockey Jerry Bailey took the starring role before 60 Minutes II cameras in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I) Saturday.
An all-out Read the Footnotes prevailed over Second of June by a neck in a gut-wrenching finish to Saturday's $250,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park.
Trainer Ralph Ziadie reports last year's Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) winner Silver Wagon is "90%" sure to run in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) Saturday at Gulfstream Park.
Jerry Bailey is racing's version of Starship Enterprise Capt. James T. Kirk, boldly going where no man has gone before. In 2003, he won more stakes (70) in one year than any other rider in history, and his mounts set a single-season earnings mark of $23,354,960. Bailey also established another riding record when he scored his 14th victory in the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships while guiding Six Perfections to the wire first in the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT).
Golden Eagle Farm's homebred Yearly Report seized the lead at the eighth pole and drew away for an easy four-length victory under jockey Jerry Bailey in Monday's $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies at Santa Anita.
Jockey Russell Baze has won the Isaac Murphy Award presented by the National Turf Writers Association for the ninth consecutive year. The award, given to the jockey with the highest winning percentage (with a minimum of 500 mounts) during the year, was inaugurated in 1995 and has been presented to Baze each year since its inception.
Mr. and Mrs. Martin J. Wygod's homebred Delmonico Cat surged to the lead in the final strides to win the $100,000 Honey Fox Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares by a half-length Saturday at Gulfstream Park, registering her first career graded stakes victory.
For the second year in a row, jockey Jerry Bailey rode a Kentucky homebred owned by Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey to victory in the $100,000 Tropical Park Derby (gr. IIIT) on New Year's Day at Calder Race Course, guiding Kitten's Joy to an easy victory.
Second of June scored a minor upset over Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) winner Silver Wagon in Saturday's $100,000 What A Pleasure Stakes at Calder. The race was part of Grand Slam I at the Florida track.
Jockey Jerry Bailey, who has broken his own North American purse earnings record with more than $23.3 million and eclipsed the one-year total for stakes wins, will be aboard a pair of favorites in stakes Saturday at Calder Race Course, where his remarkable 2003 season began.
Stonerside Stable's strong favorite Congaree won the $350,000 Cigar Mile (gr. I) for the second year in a row and gave jockey Jerry Bailey his third consecutive stakes victory at Aqueduct Saturday.
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