- By Dan Liebman
By Dan Liebman - Never having been in such a position, Gallion had trouble putting a value on Curlin...
By Dan Liebman - Never having been in such a position, Gallion had trouble putting a value on Curlin...
Thoroughbred racing is a sport of contrasting emotions, ranging from euphoria to despair and laced with a heavy dose of what might have beens. It often takes a special horse to bring all those emotions to the surface, and after watching the 132nd Preakness Stakes (gr. I), there is no doubt that Curlin is that kind of horse.
After a terrible journey chasing roses May 5, inexperienced Curlin has every right to improve in Saturday's Preakness Stakes (gr. I), says assistant Scott Blasi, who is handling the colt for trainer Steve Asmussen this week.
Steve Asmussen trainee Curlin, who finished third in the May 5 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), tuned up for Saturday's 132nd running of the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) with an easy half-mile work on Monday at Churchill Downs.
Bill Heiligbrodt's Gaff overcame a yielding turf course to register a win in Friday's $150,000 Aegon Turf Sprint (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs.
Several of the connections of this year's Derby horses have more than one shot of winning the big prize.
Showing no rust from a seven-year absence, jockey Joe Patin Jr. guided Mr Forestrey ($15.80) to victory in his first mount back in the second race April 25 at Evangeline Downs Racetrack and Casino.
In spite of unsatisfactory weather conditions throughout much of the winter-spring, business at Oaklawn Park stayed strong on track through the 2007 live racing season. While attendance and daily average slipped, on-track wagering remained strong.
Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie on Saturday will salute and recognize a foundation class of 14 inductees into the new Lone Star Park Hall of Fame in conjunction with a yearlong celebration of its 10th anniversary of live horse racing.
When 2007 began, trainer Steve Asmussen was having Triple Crown dreams about a colt named Tiz Wonderful. Those dreams were dashed when the son of Tiznow injured his right front tendon and was sent to the sidelines, and it looked as if Asmussen would be watching the spring classics alongside his talented runner.
Undefeated Curlin made like Smarty Jones in winning Saturday's $1 million Arkansas Derby (gr. II) and heads into next month's Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) as the potential favorite following his record 10 1/2-length demolition job at Oaklawn Park.
A foundation class of 14 will be enshrined in the new Lone Star Park Hall of Fame April 21 -- as part of the year long celebration of Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie's 10th anniversary. Lone Star Park's spring Thoroughbred season opens for a 16-week run April 12 and will continue through July 29.
Taking advantage of a suicidal speed duel, H. Gus King's 12-1 shot Sir Five Star rallied wide from off the pace to win the $50,000 Mountain Valley Stakes for 3-year-olds by 8 1/2 lengths before a crowd of 11,809 Saturday at Oaklawn Park.
Takedown, a son of Point Given, made his stakes debut a winning one Saturday at Sunland Park, capturing the $100,000 Borderland Derby for 3-year-olds by 1 1/4 lengths over Jack Hes Tops.
The 6-year-old Super Frolic, an earner of $1.3 million in his career, will be returned to training, Millennium Farms announced Feb. 15.
Heiligbrodt Racing Stable's favored Appealing Zophie, a grade I winner, turned away an erratic Total in the stretch to run away with Saturday's $200,000 Silverbulletday Stakes (gr. III) for 3-year-old fillies at Fair Grounds.
The impressive 3-year-old maiden winner Curlin left trainer Helen Pitts' Gulfstream Park barn Thursday for trainer Steve Asmussen's at Fair Grounds in New Orleans following the completion of a private sale by Midnight Cry Stable to Satish Sanan, Jess Jackson and George Bolton.
The New Mexico Racing Commission denied a settlement proposal from an attorney representing trainer Steve Asmussen, who is battling a six-month suspension after one of his horses tested positive for a prohibited Class 3 drug in March.
On-track business remained stable during Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie's 10th spring Thoroughbred season as approximately 6,900 customers passed through the turnstiles daily and wagered more than $1.05 million on average during the 66-date meeting that concluded Sunday.
Heiligbrodt Racing Stable's undefeated homebred Richwoman maneuvered five wide coming into the stretch and gradually wore down the 11-10 favorite Chagall to win the $109,700 Debutante (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies at Churchill Downs Saturday.
Steve Asmussen, North America's leading trainer in 2004 and 2005, has decided not to seek legal recourse over a six-month suspension that was upheld by the Louisiana Racing Commission. He is to serve the ban for a medication infraction from July 10, 2006 to Jan. 10, 2007.
Upsetter More Than Regal, ridden by Shaun Bridgmohan, collared the front-running Blazing Sunset seventy yards from the wire to score a half-length victory in the $250,000 Iowa Derby Friday at Prairie Meadows.
Steve Asmussen, North America's leading trainer in 2004 and 2005, is facing a six month suspension for a medication infraction involving the Class 2 drug mepivicaine, a local anesthetic.
Steve Asmussen faces a six-month suspension and a $2,500 fine after the Louisiana Racing Commission upheld an earlier decision stemming from a positive test for Mepivicaine on one of his runners following a race at Evangeline Downs March 24.
Belmont Stakes day stakes action got off to a rousing start in the $200,000 True North Handicap (gr. II) when Anew scorched to the lead from his outside gate and never relinquished that advantage, cruising to the wire in 1:08.10.
Making his second lifetime start, Heiligbrodt Racing Stable's Datrick disposed of stablemate Sentry in mid-stretch and edged away to win the $184,250 Kentucky Breeders' Cup (gr. III) for 2-year-olds Thursday at Churchill Downs.
David Flores will ride Storm Treasure for trainer Steve Asmussen in the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), the trainer said Tuesday.
Although neither of his horses will be among the favorites for Saturday's Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainer Steve Asmussen has a comfort level with how both Private Vow and Storm Treasure are coming into the race.
Late on a rainy, dreary Sunday afternoon, thoughts drift through the years, remembering Derbys of the not-so-distant past.
Private Vow and Storm Treasure, two Steve Asmussen-trained contenders for the May 6 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), put a smile on their trainer's face after working in company at Churchill Downs Monday morning.
Padua Stables' favored Admiral's Arch overcame traffic problems while lugging in down the lane to register a half-length victory in the $100,000 Northern Spur Breeders' Cup for 3-year-olds on the Arkansas Derby (gr. II) undercard Saturday at Oaklawn Park.
A full field of 14 runners, highlighted by Lawyer Ron and Private Vow, are set to square off in Saturday's $1-million Arkansas Derby (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park.
Dapple Stable's Capeside Lady, the 7-10 favorite under Stewart Elliott, overtook the pacesetting Injustice leaving the quarter-pole and drew off to a decisive 3 1/2-length victory in the $100,000 Bayakoa at Oaklawn Park.
Spritely Walker snapped a 22-month drought by capturing the $79,650 Dixie Poker Ace Sunday at the Fair Grounds meet at Harrah's Louisiana Downs.
Jockey Shaun Bridgmohan enjoyed a spectacular start to the opening weekend of Gulfstream Park's 2006 season, completing a sweep of the track's three features when Gaff won the $100,000 Mr. Prospector (gr. III) Saturday in track-record time.
Doctor Decherd commenced a strong rally entering the lane to nip Itsallboutthechase by a nose in a head-bobbing stretch duel to capture Saturday's fifth running of the $125,000 Aventura Stakes, the opening leg of this year's Florida Derby (gr. I) series for 3-year-olds.
Steve Asmussen saddled a New Year's Day stakes winner for the second straight year as Catonight captured the $81,600 Sugar Bowl for 3-year-olds Sunday at the Fair Grounds meet at Harrah's Louisiana Downs.
Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze and Texas-based trainer Steven Asmussen wrapped up the 2005 season as North America's leading jockey and trainer by wins.
Trainer Cole Norman was injured in an all-terrain vehicle accident at his Haughton, La., home Dec. 19. Norman was scheduled to undergo surgery on his neck Wednesday at the LSU Medical Center near Shreveport, La.
Todd Pletcher, who two weeks ago set a North American record for earnings in a year by a trainer, submitted the names of 17 horses for early-bird nomination to the April 1 Florida Derby (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park.
Odds-on choice Real Dandy, ridden patiently by Luis Quinonez, swept past his rivals while five wide in the stretch to record a 2 3/4-length victory in the $107,600 Zia Park Derby Saturday in Hobbs, N.M.
Mike McCarty's Private Vow, who ran last in a disastrous Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) effort last month, rolled to a 2 1/4-length win over six rivals in the $222,400 Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) for 2-year-olds on closing day at the Churchill Downs fall meet Saturday.
Mike McCarty's Private Vow, a dazzling nine-length winner of the Belmont Futurity (gr. I) but a victim of horrible luck in the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), is a strong favorite in a field of eight 2-year-olds entered for Saturday's 79th running of the $200,000-added Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) at Churchill Downs.
Except for many of the faces, very little is "usual" about Fair Grounds' 134th season of Thoroughbred racing that opens Saturday.
Mike McCarty's stalking Private Vow, making his stakes debut, won the $300,000 Futurity (gr. II) at Belmont Park Saturday in a nine-length romp under Jerry Bailey.
Lady Tak, a millionaire and multiple grade I winner, has been retired from racing with a record of 10 wins from 19 starts.
Curtis C. Green's unbeaten homebred He's Got Grit took command shortly after the start and then ran away from his rivals in the stretch to score an 8 1/4-length victory in the $150,000 Sapling (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at Monmouth Park Saturday.
Real Dandy, who has spent the better part of this year cashing checks against some of the top 3-year-olds in the country, finally broke through--in a $750,000 race--when he went from last to first to win Sunday's grade III West Virginia Derby at Mountaineer Race Track and Gaming Resort.
Trainer Steven Asmussen worked Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Summerly over Saratoga's Oklahoma training track Monday morning as she prepares for the grade I, $750,000 Alabama Stakes, Saratoga's major race for 3-year-old fillies Aug. 20.
Santana Strings and Eibar Coa collared pacesetter Storm Surge in mid-stretch and dug in late to deny Social Probation and 6-5 favorite Silver Train in the $150,000 Amsterdam (gr. II) for 3-year-old sprinters at Saratoga Race Course Sunday.