Wednesday, June 19 2019


Stormy Embrace Tops Nominations for $250,000 Princess Rooney (G2)


‘Win and You’re In’ Race to Co-Headline June 29 Summit of Speed
Proforma Prominent among $250,000 Smile Sprint (G3) Nominees
Carry Back, Azalea, Umphrey Turf Sprint Supporting Stakes

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Defending champion Stormy Embrace tops a list of 15 nominations for the $250,000 Princess Rooney (G2), a Breeders’ Cup ‘Win and You’re In’ event that will co-headline the June 29 Summit of Speed card at Gulfstream Park with the $250,000 Smile Sprint (G3).
Graded-stakes winners Come Dancing and Honey Bunny are also prominent on the list of nominations for the Princess Rooney, a seven-furlong sprint for fillies and mares that will offer the winner a fees-paid berth in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) at Santa Anita Nov. 2.

Stormy Embrace most recently came off a four-month freshening to win the May 18 Musical Romance Stakes, scoring by 10 ½ lengths over Lady’s Island, who came back to dominate the Nicole’s Dream Stakes by nine lengths. Stormy Embrace ran seven furlongs in a dazzling 1:21.51.

Last year, the Kathleen O’Connell-trained 5-year-old mare won the Musical Romance on her way to capturing the Princess Rooney by six lengths to earn a berth in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Churchill Downs. After finishing off-the-board at Churchill, the Matalona Thoroughbreds LLC’s homebred mare returned to finish behind multiple-stakes winner Dream Pauline twice during the Championship Meet, losing a photo finish in the Dec. 15 Sugar Swirl (G3) and checking in third in the Hurricane Bertie (G3).





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Greenshoe tops Hambletonian hopefuls in Beal elims


Five of the 10 horses in the Road to the Hambletonian rankings produced by Meadowlands Racetrack announcer/analyst Ken Warkentin will be in action Saturday (June 22) in eliminations for the Earl Beal Jr. Memorial at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, with No. 1 Greenshoe headlining the event.

Greenshoe, who also is the top-ranked 3-year-old trotter in the Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown poll, is 2-for-2 this season, with his most recent victory coming in the New Jersey Sire Stakes championship on May 31 at The Meadowlands. His times of 1:51.2 in the opening round of the NJSS and 1:50.2 in the final are the fastest miles of the season for a 3-year-old trotter.

The colt prepped for the Beal with a 28-length victory in a qualifier at Pocono on June 12. He was clocked in 1:52, which equaled the third-fastest win time of the season by a 3-year-old trotter.





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Friday, June 14 2019


Laurel Park News & Notes


Doctor Mounty Returns to Favorite Track for $100,000 Prince George’s County
Rubley Seeking ‘Right Spot’ for Multiple Stakes Winner Alwaysmining
Parisian Diva Takes Five-Race Win Streak into $100,000 Alma North
Stakes Winner Scrap Copper Works Friday, Awaits Sophomore Debut

LAUREL, MD – Larry Pratt and Dave Alden’s Doctor Mounty, a multiple Grade 3 winner who has earned four of his seven career victories at Laurel Park, will take a step back from graded company for the first time since last fall in Sunday’s $100,000 Prince George’s County Stakes.

The 1 1/16-mile Prince George’s County for 3-year-olds and up over Laurel’s world-class turf course is the third of four $100,000 stakes on a special Father’s Day program of nine races, starting with a 1:10 p.m. first post. The day also features Cars, Cigars & Barbecue, one of the most unique Father’s Day celebrations in the Mid-Atlantic, from noon to 7 p.m. Admission and parking are free.

Doctor Mounty, a 6-year-old son of 2006 champion juvenile and 2007 Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Street Sense, earned his first career graded-stakes triumph last fall at Laurel in the Baltimore-Washington International Turf Cup (G3).





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Stars to shine on Saturday at Woodbine Mohawk Park



The 3-year-old pacers in Saturday’s C$1 million North America Cup will enjoy center stage at Woodbine Mohawk Park but the card’s supporting cast includes its share of star power too, such as No. 1-ranked Shartin N, returning Horse of the Year McWicked, and additional award winners Atlanta, Emoticon Hanover, Forbidden Trade, Hannelore Hanover, Jimmy Freight, Kissin In The Sand, Tall Drink Hanover, Warrawee Ubeaut, and Youaremycandygirl.

Shartin N, who has been the top-ranked horse in all three of this year’s Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown polls, looks for her second consecutive win in the C$330,000 Roses Are Red Stakes. The 6-year-old mare won a prep race at Mohawk last week by 1-3/4 lengths over Caviart Ally in 1:48.4. She is the 4-5 morning-line favorite, with Tim Tetrick driving for trainer Jim King Jr.

“She’s was better than ever,” King said. “Her job was very easy to her. We’re looking forward to Saturday, but we know how that works; anything can happen. But she sure does look the part.”
Shartin N won 19 of 24 races last year and became the first pacing mare to earn more than a million dollars in a season, banking $1.05 million, and received the Dan Patch Award for best older female pacer. She might be an even more complete performer this year.





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Thursday, June 13 2019


Friday’s Stronach 5 Begins with 4 on the Turf


Free Past Performances, $100,000 Guaranteed Pool

LAUREL, MD – The Stronach 5 will take to the turf Friday with its first four races scheduled on the turf at Laurel Park, Gulfstream Park and Santa Anita Park.
The Stronach 5, with a guaranteed $100,000 pool and industry-low 12-percent takeout, begins at 5:20 p.m. with 11 entered at Laurel in a starter optional claimer at a mile on the turf. The sequence then heads to Gulfstream for a five furlong turf event, Laurel for a 1 1/16 mile claiming event, and then Santa Anita for an allowance optional claimer at five furlongs on the grass. The sequence concludes at Gulfstream with 11 claimers going 6 ½ furlongs on the main track.

Free Stronach 5 past performances
http://www.laurelpark.com/sites/www.laurelpark.com/files/Stronach_5_June_14.pdf





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Monday, June 10 2019


Big day for DiDomenico in Gaitway qualifiers


Manalapan, NJ — The last time trainer Scott DiDomenico qualified 2-year-olds at Gaitway Farm, it seemed dark clouds followed him at every turn. Of the eight horses he sent into action that morning last June, one posted a win and only one other finished better than fifth.

“It was kind of a beatdown day,” DiDomeninco said.

On Monday, there were dark clouds — literally, this time — all around but DiDomenico had a sunny disposition after watching three of his seven 2-year-olds post victories and another finish second.

“It was a good day at the office,” DiDomenico said. “It’s been a little lean the last couple years qualifying here. To see these horses come through and go good is very fulfilling. It certainly wasn’t a Black Monday today; it was a good Monday.”

A misty rain fell throughout the morning, with the temperature at 65 degrees to start the card. The track was rated “good.”





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Sunday, June 09 2019


Graded Winners Abound Among 118 Nominees to June 16 Stakes


Four Stakes Worth $400,000 Open Summer Schedule Worth $1.1 Million
G1 Winners Divisidero, Force the Pass Top $100,000 Prince George’s County

LAUREL, MD – More than a dozen graded-stakes winners, including Grade or Group 1 winners Divisidero, Force the Pass, El Picaro and The Great Day, are among 118 nominations to a quartet of $100,000 stakes to be run Father’s Day, Sunday, June 16 at Laurel Park.

The $100,000 Polynesian for 3-year-olds and up and $100,000 Alma North for 3-year-old fillies, both at seven furlongs, and the $100,000 Prince George’s County for 3-year-olds and up and $100,000 Big Dreyfus for females 3 and older, each at 1 1/16 miles on Laurel’s world-class turf course and new to the calendar, kick off a schedule of 13 stakes worth $1.1 million in purses during the 43-day summer meet.

Gunpowder Farms and Brereton C. Jones’ Divisidero, a two-time Grade 1 winner with more than $1.4 million in career earnings, tops 25 nominees to the Prince George’s County. Based at the Fair Hill Training Center in Elkton, Md., the 7-year-old son of Kitten’s Joy won the Turf Classic (G1) at Churchill Downs in 2016 and 2017 and last tasted victory in the 2018 Arlington Handicap (G3), trainer Kelly Rubley’s first graded-stakes triumph. Most recently, he finished fourth by 2 ½ lengths in the Muniz Memorial Handicap (G2) March 23 at Fair Grounds.





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Engblom enjoys big day at Big M qualifiers


East Rutherford, NJ --- Per Engblom’s stable got off to a strong start at Saturday’s second edition of Breakfast with the Babies at The Meadowlands, and kept the good times rolling through the morning. Engblom won six times, dominating the eight-race trotting portion of the card for 2-year-olds.

“It was a very good day,” Engblom said. “I thought we had prepared them good enough, especially my trotting fillies. They’ve been training great all winter. I had high hopes for them. The colts also came out nice.

“We’ve got good horses, so they’re supposed to look good when they come out. I was happy with pretty much everything.”

There was a total of 13 qualifiers for 2-year-olds Saturday, with all but five horses in those races making their debuts. In addition to Engblom, trainers Tony Alagna and Ray Schnittker were multiple winners, with two victories each.





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Saturday, June 08 2019


G3 Winner Ghost Hunter Record-Setting Winner of Saturday Feature


Sophomore Top Line Growth Breaks One-Mile Dirt Mark in Victory

McCarthy Wins Three; Rainbow 6, Super Hi-5 Carryovers Sunday

LAUREL, MD – Triple K Stables and Jagger Inc.’s Grade 3 winner Ghost Hunter earned the second win of his 9-year-old season in record-setting fashion at Laurel Park, splitting horses in deep stretch and closing steadily for a neck victory over favored Dundalk in Saturday’s featured sixth race.

It was the 21st win from 62 lifetime starts for Ghost Hunter ($11.60), who ran one mile in 1:33.63 over a firm Bowl Game turf course layout to break the mark of 1:33.91 set by Pizmo Time April 28.

Ghost Hunter, who has 45 top three finishes in his career, also holds the course record of 1:39.00 for 1 1/16 miles on the All Along turf course, set July 10, 2016.

“He had [the record] before,” winning trainer Jamie Ness said. “He had it for a couple years and he lost it, and now he’s got it back again. I guess he wanted it back.”

Dundalk, sent off as the 8-5 favorite over six rivals in the $45,000 second-level optional claiming allowance for 3-year-olds and up, established command early from his far outside post position and was in front through fractions of 23.30 and 47.29 seconds and 1:10.58. Hall Pass gave chase for a quarter mile before dropping back and having No Bull Addiction pick up the stalking spot.





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Friday, June 07 2019


Belmont Park Notes 6/7


• Pletcher's first Belmont victory remains special
• Rushing Fall stands out in a crowd of Grade 1 winners
• Juddmonte's world-class legacy on display for Belmont Stakes Racing Festival
• Mitole puts streak on the line in G1 Runhappy Metropolitan Handicap
• If the shoe fits...Tax training well into G1 Belmont Stakes
• Hennig has trio ready for BSRF action
• Intrepid Heart blossoming into a top-level contender
• Sisterson hoping for big day on Belmont undercard in Manhattan, Woody Stephens
• Triple Crown jockey autograph signing on Saturday

ELMONT, N.Y. - A dozen years, more than 2,700 victories and some $233.6 million in purses earned have passed since the filly Rags to Riches won the 2007 Belmont Stakes, but even after all that time trainer Todd Pletcher can't help but smile when recalling his first victory in a Triple Crown race.

"One of the amazing things about it, especially in the year afterward, is how people would come up to me and recall where they were and what they were doing when she won," said Pletcher, who will be seeking his fourth victory in the 1 ½-mile "Test of the Champion" on Saturday at Belmont Park with Intrepid Heart and Spinoff. "It really was a special moment for a lot of people."

The now seven-time Eclipse Award-winning conditioner did not make a final decision on whether to start Michael Tabor's chestnut filly until the week of the race, not long after it was announced that Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense would not be running. The field remained a tough one by any standards, including, among others, Preakness winner Curlin, Derby runner-up Hard Spun and Santa Anita Derby winner Tiago.





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Trillions Hanover hopes to put best foot forward in Fan Hanover


Tom Fanning might not have a shoo-in to reach the Fan Hanover Stakes final, but he likes Trillions Hanover’s chances with shoes on.

Fanning watched his 3-year-old female pacer qualify last weekend at The Meadowlands in 1:50.2 with a shoe missing, after which he was quick to quip with a grin, “She probably goes 1:49 with four shoes.” She can try Saturday (June 8), when she races in the first of two Fan Hanover eliminations at Woodbine Mohawk Park.

Nineteen 3-year-old filly pacers were entered in the Fan Hanover, including Dan Patch Award winner Warrawee Ubeaut and O’Brien Award winner Tall Drink Hanover. The two will meet in the second of the two C$35,000 eliminations, which also includes Three Diamonds Stakes winner Prescient Beauty and budding Ontario star Sunny Dee, who is 8-for-8 this season.

The top five finishers from each division will advance to the final on June 15.





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Thursday, June 06 2019


Gulfstream, Pegasus Runners Part of Belmont Stakes Day


Belmont Watch Party at Gulfstream Park Saturday
Twilight Racing, Live Music Friday


HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Several stars from Gulfstream Park’s Championship Meet, including Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1) winner Bricks and Mortar and Fountain of Youth (G2) runner-up Bourbon War, will be part of the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival this weekend.

Gulfstream will not only show Saturday’s Belmont Stakes program, including the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (G1), but will offer a live program of racing featuring the $100,000 Soldier’s Dancer on the turf.

First-race post Saturday is 12:35 p.m. Belmont first post will be 11:35 a.m. Silks will open at Gulfstream at 10:30 a.m. Advance wagering on Belmont’s Saturday race card will be available Friday. Gulfstream will offer a Watch Party in Ten Palms and souvenir glasses featuring the Belmont Jewel for $12 throughout the property.

For more information go to: http://gulfstreampark.com/events-and-entertainment/event-calendar/details/2019/06/08/default-calendar/belmont-dining





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