After two worthy but losing efforts in grade I company, Sis City found the competition in Saturday's Demoiselle (gr. II) Stakes to her liking, rolling to a 3-3/4 length front-end victory for Aqueduct's leading trainer, Richard Dutrow Jr.
Jockeys John Velazquez, Edgar Prado and Jerry Bailey, the nation's three leaders in purse earnings this year, will leave their New York base to ride in the Turf Festival at Hollywood Park next weekend.
The Steve Asmussen-trained Megascape, shouldering top weight of 122 pounds, went gate to wire to easily upset odds-on favorite Alfonsina in the $106,500 Valley Stream (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies Sunday at Aqueduct.
Ashado, a 3-year-old filly by Saint Ballado, added to her impressive resume Oct. 30 with a decisive victory in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff Presented by Nextel (gr. I).
Heavily favored Paddy's Daisy wore down 42-1 outsider Berbatim to win the $112,600 Jessamine County Stakes for 2-year-old fillies Thursday at Keeneland.
Commercante overtook favored Punctilious in deep stretch to win the $607,500 E.P. Taylor (Can-I) for fillies and mares at foggy, showery Woodbine Sunday for her first North American stakes victory.
Kitten's Joy is so good that he "may have mystical qualities," said Ken Ramsey, who races the homebred colt in partnership with his wife, Sarah.
by John Mucciolo - A total of 57 races were contested over the past six racing days, and favorites continue to perform well. With 23 top betting selections crossing the wire first (40 percent), and 12 second choices winning (21 percent), longshot players were once again up against it at Belmont.
by Gary Granade -- With the Breeders' Cup looming on October 30, Pletcher could elect to keep Balto Star on the dirt for the $4 million Classic (G1). The Meadowlands Cup, his first run on the main track in over a year, was a compelling argument for that course of action. On the other hand, Balto Star is a Grade 1 winner on the grass, making the $2 million Turf (G1) a viable option.
The brilliant sprinter Lady Tak, with a confident John Velazquez in the saddle, disposed of pacesetter Molto Vita coming off the turn and cruised to a two-length victory as the heavy favorite in the $150,000 Gallant Bloom Handicap (gr. II) for fillies and mares.
Unbeaten Proud Accolade, ridden confidently in his stakes debut by John Velazquez, dealt heavy favorite Afleet Alex his first loss with a half-length victory in the $500,000 Champagne (gr. I) for 2-year-olds at Belmont Park Saturday.
Three-year-old Kitten's Joy found older horses and the 1 1/2-mile distance to be non issues when registering an authoritative victory over favored Magistretti in the $750,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational (gr. IT) on a yielding Belmont Park turf course Saturday.
Daydreaming and jockey John Velazquez surged to the lead in midstretch and survived a stewards' inquiry into the closing stages to win the $406,300 Indiana Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. III) at Hoosier Park Friday night.
Spendthrift Farm's big gray Stellar Jayne and So Madcapt Stable's New York-bred Capeside Lady were installed as the co-highweights for the 10th running of the $400,000 Indiana Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. III) at Hoosier Park Oct. 1.
Favored Ocean Drive, ridden by John Velazquez, made a sweeping move around the leaders to seize the lead and draw away to win the $150,000 Noble Damsel Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park Saturday, her fourth grade III victory in 2004.
Juddmonte Farms' Sightseek moved to the front on the outside of her rivals at the quarter pole and blasted away from the field for an 11 1/4-length victory in Sunday's $300,000 Ruffian Handicap (gr. I), her fourth grade I win at Belmont Park.
Roses in May could be nicknamed Mr. October, trainer Dale Romans joked prior to the $350,000 Kentucky Cup Classic Handicap (gr. II). After he recorded his fifth straight victory this year in the easiest fashion possible Saturday at Turfway Park, the 4-year-old colt has risen to the top of the handicap division for the upcoming Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) at Lone Star Park Oct. 30.
Favored Taittinger Rose came off the rail in mid-stretch to range up just in time to earn a dead heat with pacesetting Reforest in the $100,000 Pennsylvania Oaks at Philadelphia Park Monday.
The Bobby Frankel-trained Arvada, making her United States stakes debut, went gate-to-wire to tally a half-length victory in the second division of the $109,300 Glens Falls Handicap (gr. IIIT) for fillies and mares at Saratoga Race Course Sunday.
John Velazquez rode three winners Friday, including two for leading trainer Todd Pletcher, to break the single-season jockey victory total at Saratoga Race Course that he set last year.
Nothing to Lose, guided by John Velazquez through a couple of narrow gaps in the stretch, squeezed through along the hedge close to home and went on to a narrow victory over Silver Tree in the $200,000 Fourstardave Handicap (gr. IIT) on the Saratoga turf Saturday.
Speightstown remained undefeated in four starts in 2004 with a track record-equaling victory in the $200,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (gr. II) Saturday at Saratoga Race Course.
The Todd Pletcher-trained Purge, gobbled up speed merchant Medallist on the far turn and romped to victory in the $500,000 Jim Dandy (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Saratoga Race Course Sunday.
It was like old times again here at the Spa. Rain on opening day, the largest on-track crowds in America and Todd Pletcher and John Velazquez picking up where they left off last year.
So Sweet a Cat, ridden by leading jockey John Velazquez, disposed of pacesetter South Wing with a furlong to go and drew away to a one-sided victory in the $250,000 Statue of Liberty Division of the New York Stallions Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Saratoga Race Course Thursday.
Jockey John Velazquez notched his 3,000th career victory in the second race of Thursday's card at Saratoga Race Course.
Patricia Cooksey has been named the recipient of the 2004 Mike Venezia Memorial Award in a vote of fans, turf writers and jockeys.
Multiple grade I winner Ashado reasserted herself atop the 3-year-old filly division with a 4 1/2-length romp over five rivals in the $500,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) at muddy Belmont Park Saturday.
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.
Jockey John Velazquez got the high-spirited colt Purge to relax while racing on the outside of the pacesetters and the colt responded to the easy handling with a quarter-mile to go to register a sparkling victory in the $200,000 Peter Pan (gr. II) at Belmont Park Saturday.
Patricia Cooksey, Aaron Gryder, Edgar Prado and John Velazquez have been named as the finalists for the 2004 Mike Venezia Memorial Award. The Venezia Award was instituted by the New York Racing Association to honor riders who "exemplify extraordinary sportsmanship and citizenship." Venezia was killed in a tragic spill at Belmont Park on Oct. 13, 1988.
Storm Flag Flying returned to her championship form Saturday at Belmont Park, winning the $200,000 Shuvee Handicap (gr. II) by a half-length as the even-money favorite.
Versatile California-bred mare Bear Fan hit the front near the quarter pole and bounded away to an easy five-length victory over Harmony Lodge in the $150,00 Genuine Risk Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park Sunday.
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.
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.
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.
Tiring West Virginia, passed in the stretch by Pay Attention, responded to urging from jockey John Velazquez to rally for a nose victory in the one-mile New York Stallion Stakes Times Square Division at Aqueduct on Sunday.
Aaron and Marie Jones' Forest Danger coasted past seven rivals in the $150,000 Bay Shore (gr. III) for 3-year-old sprinters Saturday at Aqueduct.
Keeneland opens its 17-day spring meet on Friday and the first featured race is the grade III Transylvania Stakes. Of the 11 jockeys named to ride in the Transylvania, five of them rank among the top 12 in the country by earnings this year.
Trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey John Velazquez combined for their fourth win on Saturday's Gulfstream Park card when Sumaya Us Stables' Newfoundland won the $100,000 Skip Away Handicap (gr. III).
After a disappointing experience on the Triple Crown trail last year, Michael Tabor's Lion Tamer may be ready to emerge as one of the nation's top sprinters following his victory Saturday in the $200,000 Richter Scale Breeders' Cup Sprint Championship Handicap (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park.
Five-year-old Gerrman-bred mare Binya won her second straight in the United States Saturday at Gulfstream Park, recording a sharp 2 1/2-length victory in the $100,000 The Very One Handicap (gr. IIIT) at 1 3/8 miles on the turf.
Storm Flag Flying, the champion 2-year-old filly in 2002, was victorious Thursday at Gulfstream Park in her first start in more than eight months, going over the $1 million mark in career earnings in the process.
Champion Storm Flag Flying returned to the winner's circle Thursday at Gulfstream Park by notching a 3 3/4-length win in an optional allowance claiming contest. Redoubled Miss was second, with Keiai Sakura 1 1/4 lengths back for third. Storm Flag Flying completed the mile and 70-yard distance in 1:42.78.
Joseph Allen's Roar Emotion pulled clear of Ivanavinalot at the top of the stretch and buried her rivals under strong urging from John Velazquez, posting a 5 1/2-length triumph in the $100,000 Sabin Handicap (gr. III) at Gulstream Park Sunday.
Dogwood Stable's Limehouse, making his first start in more than four months, came off the rail in the stretch to collar stablemate Deputy Storm and drew off to a 2 1/4-length victory in $150,000 Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park Saturday.
Joseph Allen's Randaroo got the jump on the better-fancied Harmony Lodge and the speedy filly turned what was supposed to be a match race between the two into a 7 1/4-length romp in the $100,000 Shirley Jones Handicap (gr. III) Sunday at Gulfstream Park.
Alke kept the pressure on Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) champion Cajun Beat from the outset, poking a head in front in the stretch and going on to his fourth straight win in the $100,000 Deputy Minister Handicap (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park Saturday.
Sumaya Us Stable's Newfoundland, competing in Saturday's $100,000 Canadian Turf Handicap when it was switched to the sloppy Gulfstream Park main track because of showers, scored the most significant victory of his career by a neck over favored Millennium Dragon.
Michael Tabor's 4-year-old Lion Tamer returned to competition for the first time since April's Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) by winning a $38,000 allowance optional claiming event at Gulfstream Park Wednesday.
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