Sunday, January 18 2009
MUSKET MAN AND ROCK CANDY SOAR ON SKYWAY FESTIVAL DAY
OLDSMAR, Fla. (January 17, 2009) Musket Man and Rock Candy garnered top honors in today’s Skyway Festival Day, winning the $75,000 Pasco Stakes for three-year-olds and the $65,000 Gasparilla Stakes for three-year-old fillies, respectively. Both races were contested at seven-eighths of a mile over the main track.
Musket Man, under jockey Louis Antonio Gonzalez, remains undefeated though his third lifetime start for owners Eric Fein and Vic Carlson and trainer Derek Ryan. The three-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Yonaguska broke alertly, and ran along early leaders to draw away in mid-stretch to win by one length in 1:23.06. General Quarters was second and Miles and Miles was third.
SAN RAFAEL WIN PUTS THE PAMPLEMOUSSE IN TRIPLE CROWN PICTURE
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 17, 2009) – The Pamplemousse, with only a maiden victory to his credit, not only resisted a challenge by Breeders’ Cup Juvenile runner-up Square Eddie, but drew away again Saturday to capture Santa Anita’s Grade III, $100,000 San Rafael Stakes, the track’s first major preparatory event for 3-year-olds on the Triple Crown trail.
Under a confident ride by Alex Solis, the gray son of Kafwain defeated the odds-on favorite by two lengths while covering one mile in 1:35.31 after setting a solid, but comfortable early pace. Runner-up Square Eddie, ridden by Rafael Bejarano, ended up 2 ¾ lengths ahead of third-place Ryehill Dreamer with Mike Smith aboard.
EVENING ATTIRE PROVES PERFECT FIT FOR BARRIER REEF
By Francis LaBelle Jr.
The New York Racing Association’s decision to re-name the Aqueduct Handicap the Evening Attire Stakes after the gray hero who retired last year at the age of 10 proved to be the right one on Saturday afternoon.
Not only did another gray, Darley Stable’s favored Barrier Reef, come through as the winner in 90th renewal of this $69,095 mile and a sixteenth race, but he showed the same kind of toughness that made Evening Attire a fan favorite for years.
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SUAVE JAZZ POUNCES IN FIRE PLUG STAKES
LAUREL, MD. 01-17-09----Last in a field of six and pinned down on the rail, Michael Dubb’s Suave Jazz powered through a narrow opening at the furlong pole and drew off to win the $50,000 Fire Plug Stakes this afternoon at Laurel Park.
Ridden by Jeremy Rose, Suave Jazz had traveled from New York to beat five older horses for trainer Tony Dutrow. The 6-year-old son of Suave Prospect was winning for the first time since November 2007, posting a two length victory in 1:10.96 for the six furlong distance. Yes It’s the Truth edged Springs Road for second. Suave Jazz paid $4.60 and topped a $31.80 exacta and $251 trifecta.
Read more articles in the Laurel
Keeneland Concludes January Horses of All Ages Sale
Lexington, KY (January 17, 2009) – A large, diverse contingent of domestic and foreign buyers participated in Keeneland’s recently concluded January Horses of All Ages Sale, despite the ongoing global financial crisis.
Gross receipts for the six-day auction, held January 12-17, totaled $32,824,000, down 53.4 percent from last year’s seven-day total of $70,446,000. Average price of $24,532 declined 48 percent from $47,184 reported in 2008. The median of $9,500 decreased 44.1 percent from last year’s $17,000. A total of 1,338 horses sold compared to 1,493 a year ago. The not sold rate dropped 9.2 percent when compared to 2008.
Read more articles in the Keeneland
Ikagai Scores Biggest Victory Yet in Mr. Prospector
Edmund Gann’s 4-year-old colt Ikigai had won four of his last five starts for trainer Marty Wolfson, but was taking a big step up in Saturday’s $100,000 Mr. Prospector Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park, facing Grade\Group I winners Kelly’s Landing and Black Seventeen in the field of seven going six furlongs.
With jockey Jermaine Bridgmohan aboard, Ikigai stalked from second down the backstretch, took command on the far turn, and drew clear to score by 2¼ lengths over Lael Stable’s Rollers with Wind River Stable’s California invader Black Seventeen another 3¼ lengths back in third as the winner was timed in 1:09:37 over the ‘fast’ track.
Jack Spratt Takes Dania Beach
Thomas Conway, Sand Dollar Stable and partners’ 3-year-old Jack Spratt overcame the far outside post position in a bulky field of 13 to rally to a half-length victory under jockey Julien Leparoux in Saturday’s $100,000 Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park.
Less than a length separated the first four under the wire in the one mile turf test.
Career Debut Imminent for Nicanor after Saturday Workout
Lael Stable’s Nicanor, the 3-year-old full-brother to 2006 Kentucky Derby (G1) and Florida Derby (G1) winner Barbaro, is doing “terrific” and has trainer Michael Matz hoping he will be able to make his career debut on Donn Handicap (G1) weekend, Jan. 30-Feb. 1.
The Kentucky homebred son of Dynaformer breezed a half-mile in company with fellow Matz-trainee Hennigan in 50 2/5. The two finished together with Nicanor getting the wider, outside trip around the sweeping Palm Meadows turn under exercise rider and assistant trainer Peter Brette. It was a breeze designed to gauge how ready the colt is for his debut. By all accounts, it’s a matter of scheduling now.
Dubai riches appeal Down Under
The 2005 Dubai Duty Free victory of Elvstroem, whose half-brother Haradasun won the Group 1 Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot on his second and final run in Europe last year, remains Australia’s Nad Al Sheba highlight.
However, who can forget the impact Tony Noonan had when saddling their first Carnival runners in 2007 with Benedetti and Smart and Mighty winning their first three races between them.
CHOCOLATE CANDY PREVAILS IN CALIFORNIA DERBY AT GGF
ALBANY -- Chocolate Candy, the 4-to-5 favorite ridden by Russell Baze, surged to the lead at the top of the stretch and went on to post a 1 3/4-length victory in the $100,000 California Derby at Golden Gate Fields Saturday.
Chocolate Candy completed a mile and a sixteenth on the synthetic Tapeta racing surface in 1:43.98 while defeating six rivals in Northern California's first major race for 3-year-olds with Kentucky Derby dreams. Axel Foley took second by 2 1/2 lengths over Merus Miami.
Pearls of the East set for Dubai
Japan may yet to have registered a winner at the Dubai International Racing Carnival, albeit from very few runners, but they do have a great record on World Cup night.
Victories for the likes of Admire Moon (Dubai Duty Free), Stay Gold and Heart’s Cry (Dubai Sheema Classic) and Utopia (Godolphin Mile) have seen the Hinomaru (Japanese flag) flown over Nad Al Sheba with pride in the past and this year it appears they could have their strongest team ever.
Read more articles in the Meydan
Saturday, January 17 2009
Cumani arrives prior to Carnival debut
Leading trainer Luca Cumani was on hand at Nad Al Sheba on Saturday morning, supervising final preparations for what will be his first runners at a Dubai International Carnival on Thursday night.
Cumani is yet to have a runner at the Dubai International Carnival but was one of the pioneers of the International Stables, training Endless Hall at the facility when that horse was fourth in the 2001 Dubai Sheema Classic before his win in the Singapore Airlines International Cup.
Read more articles in the Meydan