Thursday, May 14 2009


MINE THAT BIRD TOPS 13-HORSE FIELD FOR PREAKNESS 134


BALTIMORE , 05-13-09– The first four finishers in the Kentucky Derby, including 50-1 upset winner Mine That Bird, and super filly Rachel Alexandra were among the 13 horses entered Wednesday for Saturday’s 134th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course.

Mine That Bird closed from last to score by 6 ¾ lengths at Churchill Downs on May 2, followed by Pioneerof the Nile, Musket Man and Papa Clem, all of whom will contest the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown. Beaten Derby favorite Friesan Fire will also seek redemption in the 1 3/16-mile classic.





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Stakes Veteran Capt. Candyman Can Faces Unbeaten Newcomer Cash Refund In Matt Winn


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (May 13, 2009) – Three-time graded stakes winner Capt. Candyman Can looms as the betting favorite in Saturday’s 8th running of the $100,000-added Matt Winn Stakes at Churchill Downs, but that proven veteran could face a major challenge from unbeaten newcomer Cash Refund.

Owned by Joseph Rauch and David Zell, Capt. Candyman Can comes into the seven-furlong test for 3-year-olds off an impressive victory in the $200,000 Bay Shore (GIII) at New York’s Aqueduct. But the intriguing Cash Refund, owned by the Louisville-based stable of Richard, Elaine and Bert Klein, has yet to be tested as while winning his two career starts by a combined margin of 13 ¾ lengths.





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JOCKEY LEPAROUX WINS HIS 1,000TH CAREER RACE


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Wednesday, May 13, 2009) – Jockey Julien Leparoux won the 1,000th race of his brief career on Wednesday when he guided My Little Connor ($6.20) to a 1 ¾-length victory for trainer Dave Vance in the third race at Churchill Downs.

“It feels good,” Leparoux said. “I’ll feel even better when I get 1,001. Each victory feels a little bit better. There are so many people that have helped me along the way, including [trainer Patrick] Biancone, who helped me from the start to my agent Steve Bass, trainers like Mike Maker and great owners such as Ken and Sarah Ramsey. There are too many good people to mention, but I’d like to thank all of the owners and trainers who gave me the opportunity to ride their horses.”





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Churchill Downs Barn Notes 5.13.09


CONTENDERS RACHEL ALEXANDRA, PIONEEROF THE NILE DEPART CHURCHILL DOWNS FOR BALTIMORE – The exodus of Churchill Downs-based contenders for Saturday’s 134th running of the $1 million Preakness (Grade I) was completed on Wednesday when major contenders Rachel Alexandra and Pioneerof the Nile stepped onto separate vans around 12:30 p.m. (EDT) on Wednesday for the short trip to Louisville International Airport for their flight to Baltimore.

Those major players figure to be the top two betting choices in Saturday’s second jewel of racing’s Triple Crown. Post positions for the 1 3/16-mile Preakness will be drawn this afternoon at Pimlico.





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SEATTLE SMOOTH SEEKS FOURTH STRAIGHT IN SHUVEE


ELMONT, N.Y. – Mercedes Stables LLC’s Seattle Smooth will try for her fourth straight stakes victory in Saturday’s 34th running of the Grade 2, $150,000 Shuvee Handicap for fillies and mares going a mile on Belmont Park’s main track. Last August, the Quiet American filly won the Go for Wand at Delaware Park; the following month she scored in the Grade 2 Fitz Dixon Cotillion at Philadelphia Park, and last month she ran away with the Grade 2 Bed O’ Roses Handicap, winning by more than five lengths at Aqueduct.

The only question remaining for trainer Tony Dutrow is whether she’ll tackle the course at Belmont with the same zeal.





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Arlington Park Barn Notes: Wednesday, May 13, 2009


JANKS JUMPS TO TOP OF ARLINGTON TRAINER STANDINGS

After saddling two winners on Sunday’s program, Illinois-based conditioner Christine Janks jumped to a narrow lead in Arlington’s trainer standings entering Thursday’s racing program. Was she aware of it?

“Actually, my husband Barry (who keeps detailed statistics on his wife’s career) let me know about it even before we had coffee this morning,” said Janks Monday morning. “I guess we might as well enjoy it while it lasts.





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VISITING EXPERT SERIES RETURNS TO ARLINGTON PARK


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (May 13, 2009) – Arlington Park, in cooperation with The Daily Racing Form’s DRF Press, will be offering a series of visiting handicapping experts who will be on hand for interviews, handicapping seminars, and book signings throughout the 2009 meet.

“We are re-instituting the Visiting Expert Series which we introduced in Arlington’s industry-leading Handicappers’ Information Center in 1983,” explained Professor M. Scott McMannis, host of Arlington’s Thoroughbred handicapping contests and seminars. “Back then, we brought in such luminaries and authors as Andy Beyer, Jim Quinn, Bill Quirin, William Scott, Steve Davidowitz, and more. The Visiting Expert Series was, and will be again, a meaningful expansion of Arlington’s thrust to educate as well as entertain our fans. We want to make our fans better handicappers.”





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GGF WILL OPEN ADMISSION GATES EARLY SATURDAY FOR PREAKNESS SIMULCAST


ALBANY -- Golden Gate Fields will open all admission gates at 8:30 a.m. Saturday for the simulcast of the Preakness Stakes Day card from Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland.

The first simulcast from Pimlico (Race 4) will be presented at 8:48 a.m. The Preakness Stakes, the middle leg of the Triple Crown, will be run at 3:15 p.m.

Mine That Bird, the shocking winner of the Kentucky Derby, and the brilliant filly Rachel Alexandra, who won the Kentucky Oaks by 20 1/4 lengths, head a field of 13 in this year's Preakness.





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MARK S THE COOLER COMPLETES HAT-TRICK


INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 13, 2009) — Mark S the Cooler closed from fourth in the final furlong under jockey Rafael Bejarano to win Wednesday’s $50,000 allowance feature by a nose, completing a hat-trick for trainer Doug O’Neill at Hollywood Park.

Bejarano moved Mark S the Cooler from the rail to the middle of the course turning for home and he caught pacesetter Santamonicacanyon at the wire while covering one mile on turf in 1:35.60.





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HP Stable Notes: May 13th 2009


BAFFERT GUNS FOR BI-COASTAL STAKES DOUBLE

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert will be in the national spotlight with Pioneerof the Nile in the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Saturday but he will also send out Guns On the Table in the $100,000 Los Angeles Handicap at Hollywood Park the same afternoon.

The Grade III test at six furlongs on Cushion Track highlights a program that begins at 11 a.m. in conjunction with a Preakness Day simulcast from Baltimore.





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Nicanor scores first career victory


WILMINGTON, DELAWARE, May 13, 2009 – Nicanor, the brother of 2006 Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro, notched his first career victory at Delaware Park today. With Anna (Rosie) Napravnik astride, the Kentucky-bred trained by Michael Matz notched a 15 1/4-length score and completed the mile and a sixteenth on the turf in 1:46.31 in his first career race on the grass.





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Wednesday, May 13 2009


Preakness News-May 12 Late


DERBY HERO MINE THAT BIRD ARRIVES AT PIMLICO

BALTIMORE, 05-12-09 – Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird arrived at Pimlico ahead of schedule Tuesday with a Baltimore City Police escort at 6:44 p.m. after leaving Churchill Downs at 9:06.a.m.

“I called a friend on the way and said it’s the first time I’ve had the police leading me instead of chasing me,” quipped Woolley, who drove all the way in the Ford F-450 Lariat that towed the gleaming white van carrying his Kentucky Derby winner.





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