Thursday, February 12 2009
Keeneland Rated #1 By Horseplayers Association of North America
Lexington, KY (February 12, 2009) – The Horseplayers Association of North America (HANA) has ranked Keeneland first among 65 of the continent’s top racetracks in its inaugural Track Rating System.
HANA is a grassroots, not-for-profit group comprised of more than 500 horseplayers with a combined handle of approximately $30 million annually.
Read more articles in the Keeneland
Competitive day at Jebel Ali on Friday
Friday’s Jebel Ali meeting is a seven race card highlighted by an 1800m handicap, kindly sponsored by Shadwell Farms, the American arm of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s breeding operation.
It has attracted a maximum field of 16 with last year’s Godolphin Carnival winner Igor Protti, now trained by Abdulla Bin Huzaim, heading the weights.
Erwan Charpy saddles four runners, with Tadhg O’Shea electing to ride Spring City and Richard Hills on Sheikh Hamdan’s Morghim.
MARATHONER CAPRICE GAINS FIRST U.S. WIN IN LA ZANZARA ’CAP
ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 11, 2009) – German-bred Caprice, who has competed at marathon distances in France, New York, Kentucky and Illinois, recorded her first United States victory Wednesday at Santa Anita in the $75,150 La Zanzara Handicap for fillies and mares at the seldom run distance of 1 ½ miles on turf.
The 6-year-old mare, ridden by Rafael Bejarano, rallied from last in the field of six to outfinish Restless Soul by 1 ¾ lengths with 8-5 favored Brushed Gold another length back in third after appearing rank while leading into the stretch.
PICK SIX CARRYOVER OF $90,411 INTO THURSDAY
ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 11, 2009)—Due in large part to two major upsets, there is a Pick Six carryover of $90,411 into Thursday at Santa Anita, which marks the 15th carryover through 35 days of racing.
The biggest upset of the day came in race four, the second leg of the Pick Six. My King, under Alonso Quinonez, paid $35.60 to win. Owned by MT Racing Stable and trained by Mark Tsagalakis, the 5-year-old son of Lear Fan broke his maiden in his sixth career start and first time in for a claiming tag.
Wednesday, February 11 2009
CHOCOLATE CANDY TO FACE SIX IN $200,000 EL CAMINO REAL DERBY
ALBANY -- California Derby winner Chocolate Candy will try to remain on the road to the Kentucky Derby when he faces six opponents Saturday in the $200,000 El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate Fields.
A Grade 3 event for 3-year-olds, the El Camino Real Derby is Northern California's premier steppingstone to the Triple Crown events. In 27 runnings the race has produced a Kentucky Derby winner and Horse of the Year (Charismatic-1999), two Kentucky Derby runners-up (Cavonnier-1996 and Casual Lies-1992), five Preakness Stakes winners (Charismatic-1999, Tabasco Cat-1994, Snow Chief-1986, Tank's Prospect-1985, and Gate Dancer-1984), a Belmont Stakes winner (Tabasco Cat-1994), and a Belmont Stakes runner-up (Ten Most Wanted-2003).
LEAH’S SECRET TRIES TO DENY FRANKEL IN GRADE I SANTA MARIA
ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 11, 2009) – WinStar Farm’s Leah’s Secret, a decisive winner of the $500,000 Sunshine Millions Distaff three weeks before, will attempt to deny Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel a third straight victory in Santa Anita’s 67th running of the Grade I, $300,000 Santa Maria Handicap on Saturday.
Frankel will saddle a pair of entrants, Juddmonte Farms’ well-fancied British-bred Visit and multiple Grade I winner Country Star, among twelve contestants in the mile-and-one-sixteenth event for fillies and mares that he won last year with Double Trouble and the year before with Sugar Shake.
STABLE NOTES, WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 11TH, 2009
COMMON BOND FOR WINNING COLORS, STARDOM BOUND IS CONFIDENCE: STEVENS
If Stardom Bound were to run and win the Santa Anita Derby on April 4, she would become the fourth filly to take the West’s major steppingstone to the Kentucky Derby in 72 runnings, and the first since Winning Colors in 1988.
Winning Colors went on to capture the Run for the Roses, the last filly to do so, and only the third in 135 runnings of the historic classic. Should Stardom Bound duplicate Winning Colors’ rare double, it would be with a completely different style. Winning Colors was a front runner; Stardom Bound is a stone closer.
EIGHT TOP SPRINTERS ENTERED IN SATURDAY’S BARBARA FRITCHIE HANDICAP
LAUREL, MD. 02-11-09---The storied Barbara Fritchie Handicap (GII) kicks off holiday racing this weekend at Laurel Park. The John B. Campbell Handicap is the co-feature on Saturday and the General George Handicap (GII) is the highlight on Monday’s President’s day card.
A bang-up edition of the Fritchie has attracted eight fillies and mares who will race seven furlongs and kickoff the Magna 5 cross country wager. New York shipper Seventh Street, Grade I winner Dream Rush, By the Light from the powerful Richard Dutrow stable and local star Access Fee will vie for favoritism in the $150,000 test.
Read more articles in the Laurel
Tale of Ekati & Ikigai Clash in Richter Scale Saturday
Charles Fipke’s 4-year-old homebred colt Tale of Ekati is a three-time Grade 1 stakes winner and expectations are high that he will be among the leaders of the handicap division this season as he makes his 2009 season debut in Saturday’s $150,000 Richter Scale Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park.
Jockey Edgar Prado rode Tale of Ekati in five of eight starts last year for trainer Barclay Tagg and will be back aboard for Saturday’s seven-furlong test.
He’ll face five rival older horses, including Edmund Gann’s emerging sprint star Ikigai with regular rider Jermaine Bridgmohan getting a return call for trainer Marty Wolfson.
Barn notes GP 2-11
Jack Spratt Jumps into Fountain of Youth Mix
Trainer Mike Maker will get a reading on the Kentucky Derby (G1) prospects of Thomas Conway and partners’ Jack Spratt when that 3-year-old colt runs in the $250,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, Feb. 28.
It will be the son of Candy Ride’s first race on dirt.
After winning the Dania Beach Stakes on turf here on Jan. 17 with a sweeping late burst, Maker is out to see if Jack Spratt can convert that success onto the big stage of the main track.
Jockeys Play Charity Basketball Game
ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 11, 2009)—The 42nd annual Holy Angels/Santa Anita Jockeys Charity Basketball game will take place Thursday, Feb. 26, at 7 p.m. at La Salle High School in Pasadena. Proceeds will benefit the Holy Angels athletic department and legendary Hall of Fame jockeys Eddie Delahoussaye and Laffit Pincay Jr. will serve as honorary captains. Delahoussaye and Pincay will be available to sign autographs from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the La Salle High gymnasium.
“This game has been such a fun thing for all of us over the years,” said Santa Anita President Ron Charles. “To have Eddie and Laffit involved again in this way as honorary captains I think helps to draw added attention to it and hopefully, it will help us raise more money for the athletic program at Holy Angels.”
ROSEMARY HOMEISTER RIDES THREE WINNERS
OLDSMAR, Fla. (February 10, 2009) Jockey Rosemary Homeister, Jr., who is currently the second leading rider at Tampa Bay Downs through 40 days of racing, added three more victories to her win tally today. Homeister has been to the Winner’s Circle 41 times thus far, has ridden 33 second place finishers and 24 thirds.
Homeister’s first win came aboard Expect Validity, a six-year-old Valid Expectations gelding bred in Florida by Arthur Appleton. Valid Expectations is owned by Tampa Bay Downs’s leading owner Richard Averill and is trained by Kirk Ziadie.