Sunday, October 26 2008
Nite Lede, Saturday, October 25th, 2008
ARCADIA, Calif. (Oct. 25, 2008) – A couple of returning 3-year-olds registered upsets Saturday in the pair of Oak Tree stakes races that followed the Breeders’ Cup World Championships program at Santa Anita.
Muny, a 10-1 shot who had been freshened since winning an optional claimer at Del Mar two months ago, took the Grade II, $150,000 Oak Tree Derby at 1 1/8 miles on turf with a front-running victory under jockey David Flores in 1:47.69.
Into Mischief, off since February while recovering from a foot ailment, ran away with the first running of the $113,000 Damascus Stakes while covering seven furlongs in 1:20.38 over Santa Anita’s Pro-Ride synthetic surface.
Breeders’ Cup World Championships 2008 Quick Facts
Garrett Gomez is the first rider in the history of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships to ride more than two winners at a single Championship.
Gomez posted the first of his four victories on Friday when he started off the Championships with a win aboard Ventura in the Filly & Mare Sprint. On Saturday, Gomez scored with Albertus Maximus (Dirt Mile), Midshipman (Juvenile) and Midnight Lute (Sprint).
His victory aboard Midnight Lute made the Bob Baffert trainee the first repeat winner of the Sprint. Baffert became the sixth trainer in the Championships to win the same race in consecutive years with the same horse.
KODIAK KOWBOY TURNS PAGE, EYES HILL ‘N’ DALE CIGAR MILE
By Francis LaBelle Jr.
Fox Hill Farm’s and Vinery Stables’ favored Kodiak Kowboy took the long way home Saturday afternoon under jockey Gabriel Saez, but was horse enough for the journey has he put in a big finish to win the 56th running of the Grade 3, $150,000 Sport Page Handicap by a length and three-quarters over Eternal Star.
The seven-furlong sprint for three-year-olds and up was co-featured with the Grade 3 Knickerbocker Handicap on an abbreviated seen-race Belmont Park card, as the rest of the day was devoted to simulcasting of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships from Santa Anita. Sunday will mark the final day of Belmont Park’s Fall Championship Meet, with racing resuming on Wednesday, October 29 at Aqueduct Racetrack
SAMYN GETS BEST OUT OF FORMAL DECREE IN KNICK ‘CAP
By Francis LaBelle Jr.
Jean-Luc Samyn is the oldest member of New York’s jockey colony, and all of his experience paid off Saturday afternoon when he guided Godolphin Stable’s Formal Decree to a three-length, gate-to-wire victory over Strike a Deal in the 49th running of the Grade 3, $111,400 Knickerbocker Handicap for three-year-olds and up at nine furlongs on Belmont Park’s inner turf course.
Samyn, who will be 54 on November 6, broke from Post 1 and, with the rail set at 18 feet on the firm course, opened up a measured length on longshot Giant Wrecker and set a pace of .24.93, 48.31 and 1:10.95 Giant Wrecker made one final try, but Samyn and his mount simply rode off to the victory in 1:47.57.
LYCURGUS TRIUMPHS IN MISTER DIZ STAKES
LAUREL, MD. 10-25-08---Toby Roth’s Lycurgus hadn’t raced on dirt since last spring, but when the $50,000 Mister Diz Stakes was moved to the sloppy main track from the turf, the Not For Love gelding proved the off-going is just as much to his liking.
Josue Arce kept Lycurgus wide and just off a spirited pace, then moved up effortlessly to collar the leaders and powered away to win by a length in 1:03.98 for the 5-1/2 furlong distance. Saay Mi Name started his move behind the winner, could not reach him going to the wire and finished second. Norjac, who was part of the early pace, stayed on to take third.
Read more articles in the Laurel
Keeneland Fall Meet Concludes With Near-Record Attendance
Lexington, KY (October 25, 2008) – Keeneland closed its 2008 fall season on Saturday with near-record attendance for the 17-day race meeting, held October 3-25.
Fans responded positively to a month of spectacular fall weather and world-class, competitive racing, with fields averaging 10.06 starters per race. Keeneland’s signature FallStars Weekend produced a number of Breeders’ Cup World Championships entries, notably Forever Together, who prepped for her win in the Emirates Airlines Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) by taking Keeneland’s First Lady (G1) on opening day.
Keeneland Barn Notes—Closing Day, Saturday, October 25, 2008
FOREVER TOGETHER’S CREW AT KEENELAND HAPPY AFTER BREEDERS’ CUP WIN
The morning after watching Forever Together win the $2 million Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) at Santa Anita, the crew at trainer Jonathan Sheppard’s barn all wore big smiles on their faces. Forever Together spent nearly the entire month of October at Keeneland, where she won the First Lady (G1) on opening day of the fall meeting and worked twice over the Polytrack before leaving for Santa Anita on Wednesday.
“She just blossomed while she was here,” said assistant Barry Wiseman about the four-year-old daughter of Belong to Me who races for George Strawbridge’s Augustin Stable. “Training on the Polytrack really moved her up.”
Read more articles in the Keeneland
Saturday, October 25 2008
Breeders’ Cup World Championships October 24-25: Classic - Friday Notes
Casino Drive (Tr: Kazuo Fujisawa; ex. rider: Naruhito Kasai ) – The lightly raced but unbeaten Mineshaft colt, who arrived at Santa Anita mid-morning on Thursday from Hollywood Park, cantered 1m over the Pro-Ride main track here Friday morning with assistant trainer Naruhito Kasai aboard.
The Japan-based 3yo, who won at Santa Anita on Oct. 12 in just his third career start, is coming to the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic the right way, according to Nobutaka Tada, racing manager for owner Hidetoshi Yamamoto.
ROSHANI CAPTURES BATTLE OF EASTERNERS IN GRADE II LAS PALMAS
ARCADIA, Calif. (Oct. 24, 2008) – With local favorite Black Mamba never threatening as the 7-5 choice, Roshani overtook fellow Easterner Rosinka Friday to win Oak Tree’s Grade II, $250,000 Las Palmas Handicap by one-half length while negotiating one-mile over Santa Anita’s turf course in 1:34.32.
Second choice at 5-1 in the event that followed Zenyatta’s triumph in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies Classic, Roshani’s win closed out the Ultra Pick Six on the Ladies Day portion of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Winning tickets returned $16,800.60.
Stable Notes, Friday, October 24th, 2008
SMITH RETAINS EXCLUSIVITY IN DAMASCUS STAKES, OAK TREE DERBY
Mike Smith knows Gayego and Madeo like the back of his hand. Each horse has seven career starts, and the Hall of Fame rider has ridden them every time. He will be aboard again Saturday in the Damascus Stakes and the Oak Tree Derby, respectively.
“Early on he was great, but kind of tailed off,” Smith said of Gayego, who won the Grade II Arkansas Derby on April 12 but was well beaten in both the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes after that. “He’s had a lot of time since then (May 17) and he’s really been training well. Hopefully, he’ll run well Saturday. He should, the way he’s been working.”
SIMULCAST ACTION WILL BRIGHTEN AQUEDUCT DARK DAYS
Racing fans will be playing the horses at Aqueduct Racetrack seven days a week once the track opens for its fall meet on Wednesday, October 29, with live and simulcast racing featured Wednesdays through Sundays, and simulcast racing returning to the traditional “dark days” of Mondays and Tuesdays, starting on Monday, November 3.
During Aqueduct’s initial live racing days, fans will also get to play the simulcasts from such tracks as Churchill Downs, Calder, Hollywood Park, The Meadowlands, Woodbine, and Finger Lakes, with Gulfstream Park, Fair Grounds, Tampa Bay Downs and others joining the simulcast roster later on.
Read more articles in the Aqueduct
ATONED SNAPS WINLESS STREAK IN GRADE 3 PEGASUS
East Rutherford, NJ [Oct. 24, 2008] - Dogwood Stable's Atoned [$17.80, $8.00, $9.00] finally put his winless streak to rest in the $200,000 Grade 3 Pegasus Stakes on Friday night at the Meadowlands.
Atoned and jockey Chris DeCarlo waited patiently as Pluracity and Coal Play led the field to the three-quarter marker in 1:10.74. DeCarlo moved Atoned three-wide entering the stretch and he held off Ready Set [$9.60, $5.20] by a nose in 1:49.4, in the mile and an eighth event. Truth Rules [$2.20], one of two entrants for Nick Zito, soared from last to third.