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Updated: 4 days 7 hours ago

WBAL-Radio, Voorhees To Be Recognized At Alibi Breakfast

Tue, 2024-05-14 15:22

The Alibi Breakfast, held Thursday at Pimlico Race Course, will honor WBAL-Radio and photographer John Voorhees for their coverage of the 2023 GI Preakness S. WBAL-Radio will receive the David F. Woods Award while Voorhees, working on behalf of Eclipse Sportswire, will be recognized for his photo of last year's Preakness winner National Treasure (Quality Road) and jockey John Velazquez.

Tickets for the Alibi Breakfast can be purchased here.

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2023 PA-Bred Awards Topped By Angel Of Empire

Tue, 2024-05-14 14:56

Last year's GI Arkansas Derby winner Angel of Empire (Classic Empire) was honored as the 2023 PA-Bred Horse of the Year and Champion 3-year-old Male at the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association's 45th annual Iroquois Awards held May 10. Racing in 2023 for Albaugh Family Stables LLC and trained by Brad Cox, Angel of Empire won two of six starts during his 3-year-old season. He was Pennsylvania's richest state-bred of the year, with earnings of $1,446,375.

The complete list of divisional champions is below:

2-year-old Female: Carmelina (Maximus Mischief)

2-year-old Male: Drum Roll Please (Hard Spun)

3-year-old Female: Neecie Marie (Cross Traffic)

Older Female, Turf Female, and Female Sprinter: Caravel (Mizzen Mast)

Older Male: Nimitz Class (Munnings)

Male Sprinter: Twisted Ride (Great Notion)

Turf male: Our Shot (Kantharos)

PA-Preferred Female: Aoife's Magic (Smarty Jones)

PA-Preferred Male: Gordian Knot (Social Inclusion)

Broodmare of the Year: Zeezee Zoomzoom

Additionally, the PHBA recognized State Representatives Mary Jo Daley (Montgomery County), Danilo Burgos (Philadelphia County), and Kristine C. Howard (Chester County) with Legislator Awards while Ryerss Farm for Aged Equine was presented the PHBA Award of Merit.

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Mystik Dan Gets First Feel Of Pimlico Main Track

Mon, 2024-05-13 15:39

Having arrived on a van from Louisville on Sunday, GI Kentucky Derby hero Mystik Dan (Goldencents) took to a sloppy and sealed main track at Pimlico Race Course for the first time Monday morning.

If the bay looked at home in the wet conditions, it should come as no surprise. Prior to his narrow success in the Derby, his career highlight came in the Feb. 3 GIII Southwest S., when he relished a muddy strip to crush by eight lengths.

“He's such a smart horse. He takes everything in,” said retired jockey Robby Albarado, whose two Preakness victories include the 2020 renewal aboard the Ken McPeek-trained Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil). “Obviously, he loved that racetrack. If you saw the Southwest, it was a similar racetrack as this. I'm really not opposed to rain this weekend. Rain is in the forecast. He did really well [Monday]. He went over the racetrack smooth and looked around. He's ready for another round.”

Albarado did some reminiscing on the Pimlico backside Monday.

“It's been great, especially coming to Pimlico,” Albarado said. “I stopped by Stall 24 there, where Swiss Skydiver was. It was nice, it was like deja vu. Me coming here on Monday, like I did with her in 2020. It's just that I'm not riding in the race, but I'm still part of the team.”

Albarado, who was approaching the end of a very successful career four years ago, has only fond memories of that first Saturday in October in the COVID-reshuffled Triple Crown in 2020. The Preakness served as the final leg.

“I wanted to win one more major race for myself. I called up Kenny McPeek and said, 'Man, I want to win one more major race before I retire,'” Albarado recollected. He said, 'Me, too!' About a month and a half later, he calls me up and said, 'Hey, you might ride Swiss Skydiver in the Preakness.' He called me up five minutes later and said, 'Pack your stuff up. You're going to Baltimore.' I was helping him out at Keeneland. I guess I was there at the right time.”

 

Kentucky Derby winner Mystic Dan Monday morning at ⁦@PimlicoRC⁩ as he prepares for the ⁦@PreaknessStakes⁩.
@theTDNpic.twitter.com/MQY3IaOxYX

— Mike Kane (@MKane49) May 13, 2024

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Ship And Win Bonus and Maiden Dirt Bonus Return to De Mar in 2024

Mon, 2024-05-13 11:22

The Ship & Win Bonus and Maiden Dirt Bonus will return this summer for Del Mar's 85th season of racing. Entering its 14th consecutive season at Del Mar, the Ship & Win program provides an incentive for horses from out of state to race at the seaside oval by providing a guaranteed $4,000 check for any qualified runner in their first start at Del Mar. There is also a 40% bonus applied to purse winnings for that initial start, as well as any subsequent outings during the eight-week meet. As an example, the summer meet's first-condition allowance purse of $76,000 is elevated to over $106,000 with the “S & W” supplement.

Local owners and trainers continue to be strong supporters of the Ship and Win program. In the summer of 2023, 100 of the 184 “S & W” horses who came on board were owned and trained by California connections. In 2022, it was 125 of 222 “S & W” runners who were locals.

The Maiden Dirt Bonus, entering its third season at the track, provides a 20% purse bonus to horses of any age in maiden special weight races on the dirt. That extra money applies to horses who run first through fifth in “open” straight maiden races and it offers a similar reward to those who run second through fifth in California-bred dirt races. This supplement results in these maiden special weight races offering $90,000 purses.

The bonus is available only to those trainers who have fewer than 85 horses on the Southern California circuit.

“These two programs have helped provide backbone to our daily racing cards,” said Del Mar vice president and racing secretary David Jerkens. “The inclusion of out-of-state horses adds to the depth of our racing product and the fact that the vast majority of them stay on and compete at other tracks in the state has a positive ripple effect for all of California racing.”

To view the S&W program rules and eligibility requirements, visit dmtc.com/horsemen/ship-and-win.

“The key metrics for a flagship meet with the status of Del Mar are quality racing, big field sizes, integrity and safety,” said Bill Nader, the CEO of Thoroughbred Owners of California. “Del Mar scores high marks across the board and, as a result, the attractive racing content drives handle, which is our sole source of purse generation. Programs like “Ship & Win” and Maiden Dirt Bonus contribute to this success.”

The Del Mar summer season opens July 20 and concludes Sept. 8.

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TAA Silent Auction Bidding Now Open

Mon, 2024-05-13 10:28

Bidding is open now for a silent auction to benefit Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance. The auction coincides with the America's Best Racing Pre-Preakness Party, during which items will be displayed in person. The party will take Wednesday at the Mt. Washington Tavern in Baltimore and the auction is accessible both in person at the event and remotely for online bidders.

Highlights of items available include: halters from Curlin, Mage, Street Sense; custom shadow box featuring a Well Armed halter; a Christine A. Moore Millinery fascinator; framed and signed 2024 Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby win photo; signed Breeders' Cup saddle towels and programs; and signed MJC jockey silks, programs, and glasses.

Bidding will close Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. ET. For individuals that are not present at the party, items will be shipped to the winning bidder (additional shipping costs will apply).

To register for the auction and to bid, visit: abrparty.cbo.io.

Tickets for the Pre-Preakness Party are available online for $35 per person, or at the door for $40 per person. To purchase tickets, click here.

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Fasig-Tipton Midlantic May Under-Tack Show Begins Tuesday

Mon, 2024-05-13 09:58

The three-day under-tack show for the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic May Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training begins Tuesday morning at 8 a.m. at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. Hips 1 through 200 are scheduled to work Tuesday, followed by hips 201 through 400 Wednesday and hips 401 through 585 Thursday.

The Midlantic May sale will be held next Monday and Tuesday at the state fairgrounds. Bidding begins for each session at 11 a.m.

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Mystik Dan Settles In At Pimlico; Contenders Begin To Arrive

Sun, 2024-05-12 17:24

GI Kentucky Derby winner Mystik Dan (Goldencents), who was confirmed for the GI Preakness S. Saturday by trainer Kenny McPeek, traveled Sunday to Pimlico Race Course and arrived shortly after 4 p.m. accompanied by McPeek's assistant trainer Ray Bryner.

“No muss, no fuss,” said Bryner. “He's a really easy horse to be around, not complicated.”

Bryner indicated that the colt's plans for the week included a Monday gallop over the Pimlico surface following the 8:30 a.m. renovation break.

 

Mystik Dan headed to @PimlicoRC @PreaknessStakes pic.twitter.com/JWbxDKibZe

— Kenny McPeek (@KennyMcPeek) May 12, 2024

Set to join Mystik Dan in Baltimore is the Chad Brown-trained Tuscan Gold (Medaglia d'Oro) who will try to award his trainer a third Preakness after Brown won in 2017 with Cloud Computing and in 2022 with Early Voting.

Shipping from California Tuesday will be the Bob Baffert pair of Muth (Good Magic) and Imagination (Into Mischief), who will leave their Santa Anita base early Tuesday morning and arrive at Pimlico Tuesday afternoon.

“They are both doing well,” said Baffert. “I liked the way they breezed; they were a good team. I am happy the way they are coming into this.”

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Lemon Muffin Wheels Back For 100th Running Of The Black-Eyed Susan

Sun, 2024-05-12 16:26

GIII Honeybee S. winner Lemon Muffin (Collected), eighth behind Thorpedo Anna (Fast Anna) in last week's GI Kentucky Oaks, will contest the GII Black-Eyed Susan S. Friday at Pimlico Race Course. The field of eight, which was drawn Sunday, also includes Jeanne Marie (Speightster), Ringy Dingy (Dialed In), Call Another Play (Audible), Gun Song (Gun Song), Whocouldaskformo (Uncle Mo), Corposo (Vino Rosso) and Recharge (Gun Runner).

“She has her days when she's up and down and everything,” said trainer D. Wayne Lukas of Lemon Muffin. “On her best day, she's a very, very nice filly. But she doesn't always show up every time, so we're hoping that we get one of those days when she does.”

Call Another Play earned her way into the Black-Eyed Susan with a win in Laurel's Weber City Miss S. April 20, her third consecutive win for trainer Mike Trombetta.

“She just finally caught some continuity and she's figuring things out in these two-turn races,” said Trombetta. “She's been able to handle it. She's going to have to step up her game, it's just a matter of how much.”

The Black-Eyed Susan is one of three graded-stakes races on the card Friday at Pimlico to open Preakness weekend. First post Friday is at 11:30 a.m. with the Black-Eyed Susan going off at 5:44 p.m.

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Ten Happy Rose Springs Upset in Victoria, Secures Berth to Breeders’ Cup

Sun, 2024-05-12 15:50

In a wild upset of the G1 Victoria Mile on Sunday at Tokyo Racecourse, Ten Happy Rose (Jpn) (Epiphaneia {Jpn}) rocketed home late to secure her first win at the highest level and an automatic berth into the GI Maker's Mark Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf at eye-popping 208-1 odds.

Having finished sixth in her most recent appearance on track in the G2 Sankei Sports Hai Hanshin Himba S. Apr. 6 and seventh before that Feb. 17 when trying the G3 Kyoto Himba S., her last time in the winner's enclosure was August 2023, when she won the Listed Toki S., and before that in May 2022 in the Freeway S.

In no hurry after the jump, the chestnut watched the race unfold early from the back flight with only three others behind her as Conch Shell (Jpn) (Kizuna {Jpn}) and Feel Sympathy (Jpn) (Behkabad {Fr}) stepped out to set the fractions. Namur (Jpn) (Harbinger {Jpn}) broke particularly poorly, along with a rival to her outside, and the 5-2 second choice found herself trailing the field. The positions remained largely unchanged through the first 600 metres but the shuffle started in earnest entering the final bend as Ten Happy Rose inched forward from the grandstand side.

Entering the final 600, the eventual winner still had at least seven rivals to catch, and was unwittingly aided when 2-1 favourite Masked Diva (Jpn) (Rulership {Jpn}) hit traffic as her path between runners closed on her in the stretch. While that one shifted in to try and recover the lost ground, Ten Happy Rose had stormed to the front in the final 200 metres and comfortably held off Fierce Pride (Jpn) (Deep Impact {Jpn}) and the troubled betting choice by 1 1/4 lengths.

“The race development, from the start up until the final corner, exceeded my imagination and it was just a matter of how much the mare could extend her strides from there,” said winning rider Akihide Tsumura. “When we were actually leading in the last 200 meters, it was almost unbelievable. I am grateful for the fans that have been rooting for me and I hope this is just the start of more victories like this.”

The most recent addition to a storied list of Victoria Mile winners–including names such as two-time Japanese Horse of the Year Vodka (Jpn), 2010 Horse of the Year Buena Vista (Jpn),  and two-time Horse of the Year Almond Eye (Jpn)–Ten Happy Rose, along with the other top three finishers, has also earned an automatic starting position in the G1 Prix du Moulin de Longchamp as well as the G1 Prix Jacques le Marois.

 

Check out that final stretch!

Ten Happy Rose captures the #WinAndYoureIn Victoria Mile and punches her ticket to the #BreedersCup at @DelMarRacing! Congrats to all of the connections! pic.twitter.com/PcoqxMkBeK

— Breeders' Cup (@BreedersCup) May 12, 2024

Pedigree Notes:

Ten Happy Rose is the most accomplished runner for her dam Fatal Rose (Jpn) (Tanino Gimlet {Jpn}), who was an honest racehorse in her own right having hit the board 13 times in her career with several of those coming in unlisted Japanese stakes races on local circuits. Ten Happy Rose's last registered sibling is unplaced 3-year-old full-sister Fatal Tour (Jpn).

The pedigree is quite calm beneath the second dam, but shines when reaching the third, by name Oenothera (Ire) (Night Shift). A Group-placed runner in Germany, she claims U.S. champion grass horse, GI Breeders' Cup Turf winner Northern Spur (Ire) as a half-brother and herself produced noteworthy runners or the dams of them, including the likes of multiple Group 1-placed Sundrop (Jpn) (Sunday Silence), the bridesmaid in the English 1000 Guineas and Fillies' Mile. That daughter further advanced Oenothera's legacy when she became the mother of Listed winners Storm Damage (GB) (Night Of Thunder {Ire}), Nature's Colors (GB) (Poet's Voice {GB}) and that one's full-sibling Whitman (GB). Sundrop was also the granddam of stakes-winning Quiet Times (Ger) (Reliable Man {GB}).

In addition to Breeders' Cup champion Northern Spur, this is also the female family of multiple Group winner Great Marquess (GB) and G1 Irish Derby runner-up, Glyndebourne (Ire).

Saturday, Tokyo, Japan
VICTORIA MILE-G1, ¥252,500,000, Tokyo, 5-12, 4yo/up, f, 1600mT, 1:31.80, fm.
1–TEN HAPPY ROSE (JPN), 123, m, 6, by Epiphaneia (Jpn)
           1st Dam: Fatal Rose (Jpn), by Tanino Gimlet (Jpn)
           2nd Dam: Primrose Eve (Jpn), by Sunday Silence
           3rd Dam: Oenothera (Ire), by Night Shift
1ST GROUP 1 WIN. O-Yasushi Tenpaku; B-Shadai Farm; T-Daisuke Takayanagi; J-Akihide Tsumura; ¥133,150,000. Lifetime Record: 24-6-5-2, ¥268,853,001. Werk Nick Rating: F. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Click for the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Fierce Pride (Jpn), 123, m, 6, Deep Impact (Jpn)–Strawberry Fair (GB), by Kingmambo. 1ST GROUP 1 BLACK TYPE. O-Godolphin; B-Darley Japan Farm; ¥52,900,000.
3–Masked Diva (Jpn), 123, f, 4, Rulership (Jpn)–Mask Off (Jpn), by Deep Impact (Jpn) O-Shadai Race Horse; B- Shadai Farm; ¥33,450,000.
Margins: 1 1/4, NK, NK; Odds: 207.60, 11.50, 1.30.
Also ran: Doe Eyes (Jpn), Rouge Lignage (Jpn), Umbrail (Jpn), Moryana (Jpn), Namur (Jpn), Stunning Rose (Jpn), Sound Vivace (Jpn), Kita Wing (Jpn), Feel Sympathy (Jpn), Conch Shell (Jpn), Lilac (Jpn), Harper (Jpn).Click for the JRA chart & video.

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Sol De Verano Spells Second Winner For Sire Thousand Words At Woodbine

Sun, 2024-05-12 15:47

3rd-Woodbine, C$77,409, Msw, 5-12, 2yo, 4 1/2f (AWT), :52.57, ft, head.
SOL DE VERANO (c, 2, Thousand Words–Thank You Note, by Uncle Mo) made his first start as a 6-1 shot here. The dark bay bounced out of the inside gate and immediately hugged the fence. Flashing some strong foot, the colt took the lead up the backstretch, but he felt the pressure as the rest of the field bore down on him. Bottled up just behind the leader entering the lane, Admiral Nelson (Lord Nelson) looked for running room, but the pacemaker was in control with a sixteenth left found the wire by a head. The winner's dam foaled a colt by Midshipman last year. Sol de Verano is the second winner for his first-crop sire (by Pioneerof the Nile). Sales History: $12,000 Ylg '23 FTKOCT. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $31,508. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by FanDuel TV.
O-Alberto Campos-Cota, Joseph Freeman and Nathan Squires; B-Cambrey Farm LLC & Jason Hewitt (KY); T-Nathan Squires.

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Honor A.P.’s Glee Beats The Boys At Lone Star

Sun, 2024-05-12 15:27

2nd-Lone Star, $33,000, Msw, 5-12, 2yo, 4 1/2f, :52.58, sy, 5 1/2 lengths.
GLEE (f, 2, Honor A. P.–Red Tabby, by Bluegrass Cat), sent off at 9-2 for this soggy unveiling, pressed 2-1choice Big Rasee (Clearly Now) through a :22.36 opening quarter. Edging ahead of that rival after a :46.20 half, the Texas-bred filly gave the boys an education in humility as she rolled home a 5 1/2-length winner over the favorite. Firster Game Runner (Game Winner) was third. With the victory, Glee becomes the second winner for her freshman sire (by Honor Code). The winner's dam, while in foal to Warrior's Reward, was purchased by No Escape Ranch's Heidi Bailey for $23,000 at Keeneland November in 2012. Red Tabby, also responsible for an unraced 3-year-old by Maclean's Music, was bred to Tacitus last term. Sales history: $60,000 Ylg '23 FTKOCT. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $19,740. Click for the Equibase.com chart.
O-Mike G. Rutherford; B-No Escape Ranch (TX); T-Steven M. Asmussen.

 

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French Horn Hits As Second Winner For Sire Complexity At Woodbine

Sun, 2024-05-12 14:03

1st-Woodbine, C$87,579, Msw, 5-12, 2yo, 4 1/2f (AWT), :52.26, ft, 1 3/4 lengths.
FRENCH HORN (f, 2, Complexity–Emma's Encore {GISW, $398,248}, by Congrats) was rewarded for her debut as the 1-1 choice here. The filly got down to business from the bell by making the pace up the backstretch. Chased by her three rivals, she continued to make every pole a winning one around the far turn and into the lane. The juvenile dug down and found more to deliver a second win for her freshman sire (by Maclean's Music). Fellow first timer Kokomo (Flameaway) was second by 1 3/4 lengths. The winner is a half-sister to Man Friday (American Pharoah), SP, $173,138. Emma's Encore foaled a filly last year named Dare to Know (Daredevil) and she was bred to Highly Motivated for this season. Sales History: $65,000 Ylg '23 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $38,441. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by FanDuel TV.
O-BG Stables; B-Narola, LLC (ON); T-Mark E. Casse.

 

 

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Peter Pan Winner Antiquarian To Ship To Saratoga With Eye On Belmont

Sun, 2024-05-12 13:40

The Todd Pletcher-trained Antiquarian (Preservationist), who won Saturday's GII Peter Pan S. at Belmont's The Big A meeting, will point towards the GI Belmont S. held at Saratoga, Pletcher confirmed Sunday.

“He certainly acts like it,” said Pletcher when asked about whether the added distance would benefit Antiquarian. “We didn't get him in until October, but he's always done everything very professional.”

Both Antiquarian and Peter Pan third-place runner Protective (Medaglia d'Oro) will ship to Saratoga sometime in the coming week where they will join last year's champion 2-year-old Fierceness (City of Light) in the Pletcher barn. Coming off a disappointing 15th in the GI Kentucky Derby, Fierceness is also on target for the Belmont.

Other runners shipping north were GII Man o' War S. winner Silver Knott (Lope de Vega {Ire}) for Godolphin and Charlie Appleby along with Nation's Pride (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}) who are both slated to appear during the Belmont at Saratoga meet.

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McPeek to Make Preakness Decision for Mystik Dan Saturday

Fri, 2024-05-10 15:40

Kenny McPeek's final decision on GI Kentucky Derby-winner Mystik Dan (Goldencents)'s Preakness appearance should come Saturday after training at Churchill Downs and post-discussion with the owners.

The Derby hero went through a second day of galloping beneath the Twin Spires Friday morning under Robby Albarado and will likely pick up the pace Saturday morning. Jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. will have other mounts Preakness weekend and will be riding at Pimlico regardless of the final choice.

“Another steady day, another good day. Robby was happy. [Mystik Dan] ate up. We'll discuss it in depth tomorrow [Saturday],” said McPeek. “We usually walk Sundays. When I say more, just a nice gallop, maybe let him stretch a little down the lane. Nothing complicated. Only what he wants to do.”

Albarado said, “Every day is a progression for [Mystik Dan]. He'll get back in his rhythm soon. He's so easy to predict. I knew after the first day that the second day's better, the third day. He felt really good. All his leads were on point. He enjoyed being out there.”

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Muth, Imagination Have Final Preakness Works

Fri, 2024-05-10 14:53

Each slated for a tilt in Preakness 149 May 18, MGISW Muth (Good Magic) and GSW & GISP Imagination (Into Mischief) worked six furlongs in company Friday morning at Santa Anita.

Officially clocked in 1:11.90, Bob Baffert liked what he saw from the pair and mentioned he was still deciding if any other horses would join his Preakness hopefuls on the trip over to Pimlico, but that he'd wait until entry day to make a final decision. If everything goes to plan, both are scheduled to ship to Baltimore Tuesday, May 14.

“[Muth and Imagination] looked good. They stayed together like last week. It was a nice, workmanlike work. I was happy with it.”

Said move May 4 was clocked in 1:11.40 and the co-fastest of five on the morning. Muth comes into the GI Preakness S. off a victory in the GI Arkansas Derby and was the 7-2 favorite for the second jewel in last weekend's Preakness Stakes Future Wager while Imagination closed at 17-1. The latter was beaten a neck in the GI Santa Anita Derby by GI Kentucky Derby-seventh GISW Stronghold (Ghostzapper).

The post position draw for the Preakness is Monday, May 13 at 2:30 p.m.

 

Work of the Day from @santaanitapark—Imagination (Outside) and Muth worked 6 Furlongs in 1:11.80 on May 10th, 2024, for trainer Bob Baffert. @PreaknessStakes @1st_racing @1stbet pic.twitter.com/pi37TlJvS1

— XBTV (@WatchXBTV) May 10, 2024

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Peter Pan Headlines Saturday’s Stacked Belmont at Aqueduct Card

Fri, 2024-05-10 14:46

Last year's champion 3-year-old colt Arcangelo (Arrogate) captured the GIII Peter Pan S. before adding top-level victories in the GI Belmont S. and the GI Travers S.

A scratched-down field of six is expected to line up for Saturday's renewal of the Peter Pan at Aqueduct, which serves as the local prep for the final leg of the Triple Crown, which will be held at Saratoga and run at 1 1/4 miles June 8.

'TDN Rising Star' Deterministic (Liam's Map), a fantastic winner of the one-turn mile GIII Gotham S. Mar. 2 while making his first start since an eye-catching debut victory at Saratoga last summer, will look to make amends for a head-scratching eighth as the 4-5 favorite in the GII Wood Memorial S. Apr. 6.

“We were a little bit puzzled,” said Christophe Clement, who saddled Tonalist (Tapit) to wins in the 2014 Peter Pan and Belmont. “We did all sorts of tests. He came back and he's trained well. Saturday's work was a spectacular work. He's had three works since the Wood.”

The Wine Steward (Vino Rosso), a game second in the GI Claiborne Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland last fall, kicked off his sophomore season with a second-place finish in the GIII Stonestreet Lexington S. Apr. 13.

Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher will be represented by Antiquarian (Preservationist), sixth in the GII Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby Mar. 23; and the maiden of three starts Protective (Medaglia d'Oro), a longshot third after early trouble in the Wood Memorial.

MyRacehorse's Straight No Chaser (Speightster), a smashing winner of last spring's GIII Maryland Sprint S., will make his highly anticipated return on the undercard in the GIII Runhappy S.

Trained by Juan Landeros, assistant to conditioner Dan Blacker who is currently serving a suspension, he's been working bullets at Santa Anita for his return, including a five-furlong move in :59 1/5 (1/40) Apr. 27.

“We're just trying to map out the best plan for him with a goal to make a run at the Breeders' Cup Sprint this year,” said Joe Moran, Racing Manager of MyRacehorse. “That was our goal last year and his campaign got cut short. He seems fit and ready. We're expecting a pretty good effort off the layoff.”

For more on Straight No Chaser's time away from the races, click here for a recent interview with Blacker.

Saturday's 11-race program at the Big A also includes the GII Man O' War S., featuring MGISW Nations Pride (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}); and the GIII Beaugay S.

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Tyler Gaffalione Fined $2,500 for Derby Ride on Sierra Leone

Fri, 2024-05-10 14:18

Tyler Gaffalione has been fined $2,500 for his ride aboard Sierra Leone in Saturday's Kentucky Derby “for touching a rival with his left hand”, according to a ruling issued by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) Friday.

Gaffalione's agent Matt Muzikar declined to comment on the ruling and said that Gaffalione has also decided to not comment on the situation.

“After a hearing before the board of stewards, Tyler Gaffalione is hereby fined $2,500 for touching a rival with his left hand nearing the finish line while aboard Sierra Leone in the 12th race at Churchill Downs on May 4, 2024,” the stewards said Friday in their written ruling for the KHRC.

Sierra Leone bumped several times with the Japanese colt Forever Young (JPN) (Real Steel {JPN) in the stretch run as Gaffalione was unable to keep his mount from lugging in. Considering that there was only a nose separating the two at the wire, many believed that Sierra Leone could have been disqualified and placed third. However, the stewards failed to launch an inquiry and Ryusei Sakai, the rider of Forever Young did not claim foul. It has been reported that jockeys in Japan rarely place objections, believing that if there is an infraction in a race it will be caught by the stewards.

“He wanted to lean in today and made it a little difficult,” Gaffalione said following the Derby. “I had a hard time keeping him straight and that definitely cost us. He gives you everything, very responsive but he loses concentration.”

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission issued a statement early in the week regarding the stretch run and the bumping.

“The stewards review every race in Kentucky live and by video replay before posting it official and they followed the same procedure for the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby,” it read. “After conducting their standard review of the race, determining no further review or investigation was necessary to conclude there were no incidents that altered the finish of the race, and seeing there were no objections filed, the stewards posted the Kentucky Derby official.”

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Sister to Manama Gold, Ova Charged Added to Fasig-Tipton May Digital Sale

Fri, 2024-05-10 13:47

Charged Temp (Star Guitar), a full-sister to 'TDN Rising Star' GSW Manama Gold and 13-time winner GSW Ova Charged, has been added to the Fasig-Tipton May Digital sale as HIP 42, announced the auction house via release Friday.

A four-time winner herself, Charged Temp is offered in foal with her first offspring by GISW Arabian Lion (Justify) on a 2024 cover. She hails from an active female line as her dam SW Charged Cotton (Dehere) is a half to MSW & GSP Walkwithapurpose (Candy Ride {Arg}), whose daughter Regulatory Risk (Omaha Beach) recently ran third in the GI Longines Kentucky Oaks. That mare has also produced SW Where Paradise Lay (Into Mischief) and SP Whispering Pines (Uncle Mo). This is also the family of MGISW Schossberg as well as Canadian champion juvenile colt MGSW Conquest Typhoon.

Bidding for the sale will end Tuesday, May 14 at 2:00 p.m. eastern time. To view the catalogue and register to bid, please visit the website.

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Virginia Program Generated $86.2M Since 2017

Thu, 2024-05-09 17:51

The Virginia-Certified Residency Program generated an estimated economic impact of $86.2 million between 2017 and 2023, according to a study commissioned by the Virginia Equine Alliance.

“This is a significant total, especially taking into consideration that the program is still relatively new,” said Debbie Easter, president of the Virginia Equine Alliance. “The program didn't begin until 2017, yet already is demonstrating its value.”

The program requires horses to reside at least six consecutive months at a Virginia farm during his or her first two years to receive a certification as Virginia-certified and to qualify to receive bonuses in eligible races.

More than 5,000 horses have participated to date. Six Virginia-restricted stakes with combined purse money of $750,000 will be offered during the summer meet at Colonial Downs, with another 40 Virginia-restricted overnight races also offered in the track's first Condition Book.

Other highlights of the study include:

  • The direct spending of the program was estimated at $54.5 million from 2017 to 2023.
  • The program produced an estimated $1.8 million in tax revenue for the state government.
  • The cumulative economic impact is 5.9 times larger than the total incentive payout.

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Stronghold and Endlessly Regroup at Santa Anita after Kentucky Derby

Thu, 2024-05-09 17:16

California-based GI Kentucky Derby runners Stronghold (Ghostzapper) and Endlessly (Oscar Performance) have returned to Santa Anita after their respective seventh- and ninth-place finishes at Churchill Downs, according to Santa Anita's track notes Thursday. Each was back in his own stall Tuesday.

Stronghold jogged Thursday in his first time back to the track.

“He came out of the race in good shape,” trainer Phil D'Amato said Thursday morning of the Eric and Sharon Waller homebred.

D'Amato continued: “I thought he got a good stalking trip behind the speed. He made a nice little move at the top of the lane and then kind of faded the final eighth.”

D'Amato said Stronghold will probably be pointed to some of the 3-year-old races over the summer, with the team taking a close look at some of the derbies held in the Midwest.

“We're going to recharge the batteries and aim for some big stakes down the road,” he said. “We'll focus on mile and mile-and-eighth races this year.”

Amerman Racing's Endlessly tried dirt for the first time in the Derby.

“I thought he ran very well all things considered,” said trainer Michael McCarthy Thursday. “First time dirt, first time getting kickback. He was a little farther back than I would have liked, but he put in a mild run around the first turn and finished up nicely.”

McCarthy indicated Endlessly will return to turf. “We're going to go ahead and get him back to his routine and look for something in July.”

In other news from Santa Anita Thursday, last summer's GI Pacific Classic S. winner and 'TDN Rising Star' Arabian Knight (Uncle Mo) worked five furlongs in 1:01 for Bob Baffert as he continued to prepare for his 4-year-old campaign. It was his fifth work since Apr. 11.

Also working for Baffert was MGSW and 'TDN Rising Star' Kinza (Carpe Diem), on the work tab for the first time since finishing second–her first career loss–in the Apr. 6 GII Santa Anita Oaks. She covered her four furlongs in :48.40.

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