Friday, May 08 2009


OCULUNA NOSES NORTHERN BELLE TO WIN CHURCHILL DOWNS FEATURE


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Thursday, May 7, 2009) – Silverton Hill’s Oculuna outgamed Northern Belle through a stretch-long duel to win Thursday’s $51,785 featured allowance at Churchill Downs by a nose.

Ridden by Julien Leparoux, Oculuna ranged alongside Northern Belle at the top of the stretch after Northern Belle had put away the pace-setting Gibsonsfasttrick. The two raced as team to wire with Oculuna winning the head-bob and completing the five furlongs on a “sloppy” track in :57.88.





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THE PREAKNESS FIELD CONTINUES TO TAKE SHAPE NINE DAYS BEFORE THE MIDDLE JEWEL


BALTIMORE, 05-07-09---The story continues to develop as the field for the 134th Preakness® Stakes continues to take shape. The $1 million classic is the headline event of a 13-race card at historic Pimlico Race Course next Saturday, May 16.

Trainer Larry Jones said he will ship Friesan Fire, the Kentucky Derby favorite, to Pimlico Monday, May 11 with plans to work the Louisiana Derby (Grade II) winner five-furlongs at Old Hilltop on Tuesday morning then decide if the son of A.P. Indy will run in the Preakness. The colt suffered cuts in his left front foot while getting bumped shortly after the start of the “Run for the Roses”.





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PREAKNESS INFIELDFEST FEATURES THREE ROCK N ROLL PERFORMANCES


BALTIMORE, 05-07-09—The Maryland Jockey Club announced today the final roll call of events for Preakness InfieldFEST, presented by Bud Light, at Pimlico Race Course on Saturday, May 16, 2009.

Plans for the Bud Light InfieldFEST were unveiled February 5. The day will feature a main stage concert with three rock performances, Rock and Roll Hall of Famers ZZ Top, Grammy-nominated Buckcherry and Maryland’s #1 Rock Band, Charm City Devils, along with The Toyota Pro Beach East Women’s Volleyball Tournament and an interactive competition including virtual NASCAR racing, where fans can win over $10,000 in prize money .





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COCO BELLE PREVAILS UNDER SMITH IN FEATURE


INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 7, 2009) — Coco Belle seized the lead from the start and led all the way under Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith to snap a six-race losing streak in Thursday’s $60,000 allowance feature at Hollywood Park.

The chestnut mare covered 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.33 while hanging on in the stretch for a one-length victory over She’s Cheeky. Ashley’s Kitty finished third in the field of six fillies and mares, followed by even-money favorite Foxy Danseur.





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SCHVANEVELDT, MARTIN TEAM UP FOR PAIR OF VICTORIES AT GGF


ALBANY -- Jockey Chad Schvaneveldt and trainer John F. Martin teamed up to win a pair of races at Golden Gate Fields Thursday.

Schvaneveldt and Martin captured the third race with heavy favorite Avondelay ($2.80) and the seventh with Gloria Jeanne ($8.80). Schvaneveldt ranks fifth in the jockey standings with 45 victories while Martin is tied for eighth in the trainer standings with Lloyd Mason with 22 wins.





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Thursday, May 07 2009


UNBEATEN RAIL TRIP AIMS FOR SIXTH STRAIGHT WIN IN MERVYN LEROY


INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 7, 2009) — Unbeaten Rail Trip will try to stretch his unbeaten streak to six when he carries high weight of 119 pounds in Saturday’s 30th running of the $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Rail Trip, owned by Jay Em Ess Stable and trained by Ron Ellis, had a chip taken out of an ankle as a 2-year-old and did not start until late in his 3-year-old year, but he is quickly making up for lost time.





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Monmouth Park Barn Notes for Thursday, May 7, 2009


HE’S SO CHIC PRIMED FOR BIG EFFORT IN OPENING DAY’S DECATHLON

Monmouth’s 2009 season kicks off with a bang Saturday, with a field of eight entered in the $70,000 Decathlon Stakes at six furlongs. The stakes will be run as the 10th event on an 11-race card, with first post set at 12:50 p.m.

The field includes one of Monmouth’s all-time favorites in Gerry Sleeter’s 7-year-old Who’s the Cowboy, and a former claimer turned speedster in the Scott Volk-trained Unwritten.





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Arlington Park Barn Notes: May 7, 2009


ARLINGTON OFFERS ROSES, REDUCED PRICES ONLINE FOR MOTHER’S DAY

Arlington Park’s always festive Mother’s Day program this Sunday will be enhanced when local jockeys dressed in racing silks will on hand at all entrances to present a free rose to the first 7,500 ladies through the gates.

This season, however, Chicago’s northwestern suburban Thoroughbred oval is also offering admission prices reduced by 30 percent to those who make their holiday reservations online for Arlington’s Mother’s Day racing program.







 

ARLINGTON PARK TO OFFER LIVE MONEY HANDICAPPING CONTEST SERIES


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (May 7, 2009) – Arlington Park, which introduced its first live money handicapping contest series in during the 2008 meet, is bringing the popular Arlington Handicapping Challenge back for 2009, starting this Saturday, May 9, with an added “Beat the Pro” feature for the first contest.

The live money series will be free to enter once again and offer berths into the 2010 Horse Player World Series. Players must be members of the Twin Spires Club (TSC) in order to participate, however membership in the TSC is free and contestants may join the TSC when signing up for the contest.





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FAN FAVORITES SQUARE OFF IN KINGSTON


ELMONT, N.Y. -- When Banrock stuck his head out to win Belmont Park’s 2008 Kingston Stakes over Dave, it signaled the start of a big season for the gelded son of 1994 Kentucky Derby winner Go for Gin. By year’s end, Banrock had won four of eight starts with two third-place finishes as well as the admiration of New York’s fans.

Sunday afternoon, the 6-year-old Banrock will return for the 31st running of the $100,000-added Kingston Stakes for New York-breds at a mile and a sixteenth on the inner turf course, where he will face some others that have earned admiration for their class and courage. With plenty of rain during the week, the footing should favor Banrock, who won the Kingston over yielding ground last year.





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PROCINO RETURNS TO ROOTS IN PETER PAN


ELMONT, N.Y. – Gerald Procino has been away a long time. Now, he has taken an even longer road back home to New York.

Procino, who turns 68 on May 25, is a native of Yonkers, N.Y. He started off exercising Thoroughbreds, became a successful standardbred trainer, moved to Florida to train Thoroughbreds in the 1990s and now is back at Belmont Park on Saturday, where he will saddle Stately Character in the 56th running of the Grade 2, $200,000 Peter Pan for three-year-olds at nine furlongs. The Peter Pan (race 9, 5:17 p.m.) will be the third leg of Belmont Park’s brand new guaranteed $350,000 Late Pick 4 (races 7-10).





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FAMILIAR FACES ADD UP TO STRONG BELMONT JOCKEY COLONY


ELMONT, N.Y. – The day after riding Pioneerof the Nile to a second-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, Garrett Gomez was back in the irons at Belmont Park, where he will base his tack this spring for the fourth year in a row.

Gomez was one of seven New York jockeys to have a mount in the Derby, and returning to Belmont with him were Eibar Coa, Alan Garcia, Edgar Prado, Kent Desormeaux, Ramon Dominguez and John Velazquez.





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