Saturday, December 20 2008
BACKBACKBACKGONE FAVORED IN GOLD RUSH STAKES
ALBANY -- Backbackbackgone, a winner of three of his four career starts, is the one to beat in the $75,000 Gold Rush Stakes at Golden Gate Fields Saturday.
The Gold Rush is a one-mile race for 2-year-olds that will be run on the synthetic Tapeta racing surface. The feature is the eighth race on a nine-race program that begins at 12:45 p.m.
Jock to reign again?
Sunday is the Listed Thoroughbred version of HH The President’s Cup, kindly sponsored by Hyrda Properties, and 12 have been declared for the 1400m feature on the Abu Dhabi turf.
The weights are headed by the 2006 winner King Jock who was third in last week’s National Day Cup, a race he also won in 2006, over a furlong further.
JOHN MARSHALL VICE PRESIDENT OF RACING FOR CALDER RACE COURSE
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Dec. 19, 2008) – Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN) (“CDI” or “Company”) today announced that John T. Marshall has been named vice president and general manager of racing for Calder Race Course (“Calder”) in Miami. He will report to Calder President and General Manager Tom O’Donnell and begins his new role effective Jan. 19, 2009.
Marshall joins CDI from The Meadows Racetrack in Pennsylvania, where he previously served as vice president and general manager. Prior responsibilities at The Meadows include tenures as assistant general manager and as human resources manager for both the track and its four associated off-track betting facilities.
Read more articles in the Calder
BAFFERT GETS RECORD-TYING FOURTH CASHCALL FUTURITY VICTORY
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Dec. 20, 2008) — Pioneerof the Nile had trainer Bob Baffert thinking Kentucky Derby after he scored a thrilling victory over I Want Revenge in Saturday’s $750,000 CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park.
Baffert, who has saddled three Derby winners, equaled the record of four Futurity victories set by D. Wayne Lukas as Pioneerof the Nile fought off gritty 6-1 shot I Want Revenge in deep stretch to win the 28th running of the Grade I event by a nose under jockey Garrett Gomez.
Friday, December 19 2008
Experience should tell in Gowell Stakes
FLORENCE, KY . . . December 18, 2008 . . . The $50,000 Gowell Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday has drawn 11 two-year-old fillies with a wide range of racing experience.
With five career starts and two wins, including a maiden win at the Gowell distance at Turfway, Emma Darling brings wide experience to the race. She sat behind a quick pace for the maiden win at six furlongs and used a similar style to win her most recent race, a mile allowance at Churchill Downs. She also has stakes experience, finishing fourth in the Bassinet Stakes at River Downs at summer’s end. Emma Darling is trained by Mike Maker, the meet’s top trainer, and will be ridden by Victor Lebron.
Read more articles in the Turfway
Jockey Wilkinson gets first career win
FLORENCE, KY . . . December 18, 2008 . . . Apprentice jockey Erin Wilkinson, 24, earned her first career win Thursday night when she guided the filly Misstee Blue to a commanding 7 1/4-length win in the third race at Turfway Park. The ride was the 28th of her young career.
“It’s pure adrenalin,” Wilkinson said of race riding. “I can’t explain it.”
“She’s true grit,” said her agent, Fred Struss. “She’ll ride at Turfway in the morning, turn around and drive back to LaGrange to get on horses at High Point (Training Center), and then turn right back around and come back to Turfway to ride at night. She works hard. She’s going to be a good one.”
Read more articles in the Turfway
ROSEMARY HOMEISTER, JR. CELEBRATES 2000TH WIN
OLDSMAR, Fla. (December 18, 2008) Rosemary Homeister, Jr. booted home Rustyshouldrun for her 2000th career victory today at the Oldsmar oval. Homeister, who ended her inaugural season last year at Tampa Bay Downs as the second leading rider, said of her milestone win, “It felt like it took forever to get that last win! I can’t even explain the feeling – it’s like winning your first race!” Homeister, who was met with congratulations from fans and horsemen alike after her win, said that she doesn’t plan on resting on he laurels for the upcoming Tampa meet. “I’m currently the third leading female rider in the country, and I’m only behind P. J. Cooksey a hundred thirty-something wins. My next goal is to be second leading female rider in the country… but I don’t know if I’ll ever catch Julie Krone! I’m just so grateful and happy to be back here in Tampa. I love it here, and I’m hoping to have another great season.”
Rampallion lands second Stakes for Charpy
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktom’s Shadwell were the generous sponsors of the Listed Jebel Ali Stakes, the 1950m feature at Jebel Ali’s third meeting of the season on Friday, and the owner came close to recouping the main prize when his Rohaani was a close second.
However, it was the Erwan Charpy-trained Rampallion who landed the spoils in a thrilling finish with jockey David Badel punching the air in delight as he crossed the line.
MARYLAND JUVENILE FILLY CHAMPIONSHIP A WIDE OPEN AFFAIR
LAUREL, MD. 12-18-08---With undefeated Miss Charm City out with an injury, the $50,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship has become a wide-open affair with six two-year-old Maryland-breds competing at a mile and a sixteenth at Laurel Park on Saturday afternoon. Trackside fans can look forward to multiple prize drawings and generous giveaways during the nine-race program.
Miss Charm City, who finishes her freshman campaign a perfect three-for-three including a pair of stakes victories at Laurel during the current fall meeting, suffered a suspensory injury in her left front foot earlier this week according to trainer Carlos Garcia.
Read more articles in the Laurel
VICTORY PETE CRUISES UNDER SMITH IN HOLLYPARK FEATURE
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Dec. 18, 2008) — Victory Pete took command from the start and cruised to a 5 1/2-length victory over Lake Meza under Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith in Thursday’s $39,400 allowance feature at Hollywood Park.
A change in surface didn’t adversely affect the 7-5 favorite as he covered 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track in 1:41.82 to win for the second time in eight starts. The 3-year-old son of Five Star Day was making his second start following an eight-month layoff.
BAFFERT HOLDS A PAIR AS HE AIMS FOR RECORD-TYING FOURTH WIN
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Dec. 18, 2008) — Bob Baffert will aim for a record-tying fourth CashCall Futurity victory when he saddles Pioneerof the Nile and Ventana in the 28th running of the $750,000 event Saturday at Hollywood Park.
Baffert’s most recent winner — Point Given in 2000 — was more accomplished entering the Grade I event, but his first — Real Quiet in 1997 — was less heralded. Both went on to win two legs of the Triple Crown, Point Given the Preakness and Belmont and Real Quiet the Kentucky Derby and Preakness. Real Quiet came within a nose of sweeping the Triple Crown.
Hollywood Park Stable Notes: Thursday, December 18, 2008
BEJARANO SEEKS TO ADD FUTURITY JEWEL TO MEET CROWN
Agent Joe Ferrer saluted jockey Rafael Bejarano for clinching the Autumn Meet title at Hollywood Park — completing a rare sweep of all five major stops on the Southern California circuit in 2008 — but admitted that something was missing.
“In a way, it’s been a very uneventful meet,” said Ferrer Thursday. “Rafael has won a lot of races, but not any major ones.”