To celebrate the arrival of the recently retired grade II winner Ball Four at Old Friends Thoroughbred retirement center near Georgetown, Ky., the 10-year-old son of Grand Slam will make an appearance at Keeneland April 16.
- Bay Gelding
- Born 2001
Ball Four, a son of Grand Slam, has been retired and sent to Old Friends near Midway, Ky. Michael Blowen, owner of Old Friends related the story of how he got the gelding.
Ball Four, who proved too tough for the previously undefeated Rail Trip on the front end in the Mervyn LeRoy Handicap (gr. II) one month ago, is back as the 120-pound co-high weight for the $250,000 Californian (gr. II) at Hollywood Park June 13.
Crafty 8-year-old Ball Four, reunited with trainer Patrick Biancone for his first start in four months, dealt heavily-favored Rail Trip his first career defeat by going gate to wire to win the $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park May 9.
Undefeated Rail Trip puts his five-race winning streak on the line against five rivals in the $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park on May 9.
Grade I winner Well Armed will make his first start since a ninth-place finish as the 6-5 choice in the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile more than two months ago when he tackles the $150,000 San Pasqual Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita Jan. 10.
Slew's Tizzy, bounding home from between horses for red-hot jockey Joel Rosario, outfought favored Past the Point and pacesetter Ball Four to win the $108,200 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) in a 7-1 surprise at Hollywood Park Dec. 6.
Racketeer, runner-up to Heatseeker in last year's Native Diver Handicap (gr. III), makes a one-week turnaround for trainer Barry Abrams in this year's $100,000-added renewal of the 1 1/8-mile Cushion Track event Dec. 6 at Hollywood Park.
Lava Man, the most prosperous claiming purchase in racing history, will be out to lay claim to another distinction on Saturday when the 6-year-old gelding will be an overwhelming favorite to win a second $1 million Santa Anita Handicap presented by San Manual Indian Bingo & Casino (gr. I).
TNT Stud's homebred Molengao altered course mid-stretch before getting up in the final couple of strides to capture the $250,000 San Antonio Handicap by a head over the stubborn Ball Four at Santa Anita Sunday.
Mike Pegram's Preachinatthebar, whose most notable career accomplishment came in winning Santa Anita's San Rafael Stakes (gr. II) three years ago, is expected to be a slight favorite to match that achievement in Sunday's $250,000 San Antonio Handicap (gr. II) for older horses at Santa Anita.
Saint Stephen became the latest to make a successful switch from the turf to Hollywood Park's Cushion Track, taking advantage of a quick pace to register a late-running score in the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) Sunday.
Ball Four, described as a sparring partner for many of his stablemates by trainer Patrick Biancone, will try to deliver a knockout punch of his own in Sunday's $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) at Hollywood Park.
Gary Tanaka's overlooked Eccentric slipped through along the inside to overtake Ball Four in the final furlong to win the $150,000 Fayette (gr. III) on Polytrack by three quarters of a length on closing day of the Keeneland fall meet Saturday.
A.P. Arrow faces a near capacity field of 12 rivals in Saturday's $150,000 Fayette (gr. III) for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/8 miles on closing day of Keenland's fall meet.
Pacesetting Ball Four held off a determined late charge from the veteran Perfect Drift to win the $350,000 Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) on the Turfway Park all-weather track Saturday.
Trainer Patrick Biancone will stable 24 of his charges at Turfway Park through October to train over the track's Polytrack surface. The horses are expected on the grounds Oct. 2. Among them are Stream Cat, Angara, Henny Hughes, Luas Line, Pomeroy, Ball Four, and Asi Siempre.
Even-money choice Shaniko, given a confident hand ride by Rafael Bejarano, disposed of pacesetter Ball Four approaching the furlong pole and drew off to a commanding 4 1/2-length victory in the $342,500 Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) at Turfway Park Saturday.
As expected early in the week, fields for Turfway Park's Kentucky Cup Day of Champions Saturday remain a matter for discussion. Still, some trainers' plans have begun to jell.
Ball Four, a 3-year-old winning son of Grand Slam, sold for $110,000 Wednesday to top the Fasig-Tipton horses of racing age sale at Belmont Park in New York.
Personal Rush, a Japanese-based entrant in Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I), breezed Wednesday at Lone Star Park in his final workout for Saturday's $4-million race.
|Trainer||Patrick L. Biancone|
|Owner||Flying Zee Stable|
|Breeder||B. D. Gibbs Farm, LLC & Grand Slam Farm LLC|
|Ball Four View Five-Cross Pedigree||Grand Slam||Gone West|
|Sale / Hip||Type||Buyer||Consignor||Price|
|Weanling||Gaines-Gentry Thoroughbreds||Eaton Sales, agent||$140,000|
|Yearling||Robert N. Scanlon, agent||Eaton Sales, agent||$125,000|
|Racing or stallion prospect||Joseph Brocklebank, agent||Andrew Farm and Suren A. Hovsepian||$110,000|