Thursday, March 05 2009
Boys dominate Al Maktoum Challenge
The final meeting of the 2009 Dubai International Racing Carnival, Super Thursday, was kindly sponsored by Shadwell Farms and a cracking night’s racing served as the perfect aperitif for the final meeting ever at Nad Al Sheba – Dubai World Cup night – on 28th March.
The official feature was the Group 2 Maktoum Challenge III - Invasor, over 2000m on dirt and a race won three times previously by subsequent Dubai World Cup winners.
Read more articles in the Meydan
NTRA RELEASES SCHEDULE OF NHC QUALIFIERS
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) and Daily Racing Form (DRF) announced today the 2009 year-long schedule of qualifying events for the DRF/NTRA National Handicapping Championship (NHC) which carries an estimated total purse of $1 million.
The schedule (subject to changes and additions) is comprised of 101 events hosted at 42 different racetracks, off-track wagering facilities, Websites and casinos. Competitions are scheduled to take place now through late December. A full list of NHC qualifying dates and venues can be viewed at http://www.ntra.com/nhctour
. Approximately 300 NHC qualifyiing berths will be available via the qualifiers and the NHC Tour.
HITBOUND STABLES UNWORLDLY HEAT TAKES SARA SMILE
ARCADIA, Calif. (March 4, 2009)—Although the legendary musical duo of Hall & Oates weren’t on hand to enjoy it, today’s Sara Smile Purse was taken in impressive fashion by favored Unworldly Heat, a 4-year-old California-bred filly by Unusual Heat who was ridden by Rafael Bejarano and is owned coincidentally, by Hitbound Stable.
The Sara Smile, a first-condition allowance race for California-bred fillies and mares aged four years and up, was contested at six furlongs in a driving rain on Santa Anita’s Pro Ride synthetic main track.
STABLE NOTES, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4TH, 2009
EINSTEIN HEADS 14 IN SATURDAY’S $1 MILLION SANTA ANITA HANDICAP
Despite the fact that Einstein has never raced on a synthetic track, his participation in Saturday’s $1 million Santa Anita Handicap was a no-brainer.
“He’s doing well. He’s really settled in nicely,” said Helen Pitts, who trains the Brazilian-bred son of 1985 Kentucky Derby winner Spend a Buck. “He’s handled the track fine, and seems to be going good. We’ve had great weather (before Wednesday’s rain), and he’s adapted very well.”
COLONEL JOHN IS 9-2 PICK IN DEEP, DIVERSE SANTA ANITA HANDICAP
ARCADIA, Calif. (March 4, 2009) – While Saturday’s Grade I, $300,000 Santa Anita Oaks seems a solitary audition for dynamic 3-year-old filly Stardom Bound’s projected date with the boys in next month’s Santa Anita Derby, the 72nd running of the $1-million Santa Anita Handicap is plainly bursting with diversity and depth.
Fourteen horses, bred in five different countries, were entered in historic Santa Anita’s signature event at 1 ¼ miles. The cast includes eight Grade or Group I winners who are coming out of eight different graded stakes raced from coast-to-coast over surfaces ranging from grass to dirt to synthetics.
Barbaro’s Brother Nicanor Set for Round Two
Barbaro’s baby brother Nicanor, recovered from minor injuries suffered in his first career start, takes his second try at finding the winner’s circle Saturday when he tackles a field of nine other 3-year-olds.
Nicanor’s race, the Malibu Rum Finish Line, is the eighth on a card of 11 races, highlighted by the $100,000 Honey Fox and the $75,000 Sunshine State. The Malibu Rum carries a $40,000 purse and will be contested at seven furlongs.
GOTHAM OFFERS HAYNESFIELD TEST HE’S BEEN AWAITING
Even as Turtle Bird Stable’s Haynesfield was racking up three consecutive stakes victories at Aqueduct Racetrack, the statement from his connections remained consistent: one race at a time.
So far, the formula has been a winning one, and Haynesfield will try to make it four straight stakes wins in Saturday’s 57th running of the Grade 3, $250,000 Gotham for three-year-olds at a mile and a sixteenth over the inner track.
Read more articles in the Aqueduct
LUCKY ISLAND HOPES TO SLIDE INTO 2009 SEASON ON TOBOGGAN
Saturday’s 116th running of Aqueduct Racetrack’s Grade 3, $100,000-added Toboggan Stakes for three-year-olds and up at six furlongs (race 8; 3:49 p.m.) marks the season debut for several horses. And the one that figures to be most closely scrutinized is Shadwell Stable’s Argentina-bred Lucky Island.
If bettors believe he is at the top of his game, Lucky Island could easily be a single in Aqueduct’s guaranteed $250,000 late Pick 4 on races 7-10 – the 57th running of the Grade 3, $250,000 Gotham for three-year-olds at a mile and a sixteenth is the featured ninth race – but if he not, the door is open for some juicy payoffs.
SANTA ANITA HANDICAP SIMULCAST, SNOW DAY HEADLINE SATURDAY RACING PROGRAM
ALBANY -- The simulcast of the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap, a Grade 1 classic that Bay Area trainer Jerry Hollendorfer will try to win for the second straight year, and Snow Day festivities will highlight a big Saturday afternoon at Golden Gate Fields.
There is a special early post time of 12:15 p.m. at Golden Gate Fields Saturday since Santa Anita has scheduled a noon post time for its Santa Anita Handicap Day program. Golden Gate Fields will simulcast the entire card from Santa Anita.
Autograph sessions with Derby winners rescheduled
FLORENCE, KY . . . March 4, 2009 . . . Turfway Park has rescheduled previously planned autograph sessions with Kentucky Derby-winning jockeys Steve Cauthen, Pat Day, Mike Manganello, Craig Perret, and Chris McCarron.
Manganello, Perret, and McCarron will be at Turfway Park on Thursday, March 12, to meet fans and sign autographs. Day and Cauthen will be on hand Thursday, March 19. The autograph sessions are scheduled from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. both days.
Read more articles in the Turfway
Wednesday, March 04 2009
Florida Derby Prospects Likely to Emerge from Friday Feature
Lori and George Hall’s Atomic Rain and Jayeff B Stable’s Chef are prominent in a field of eight 3-year-olds entered in Friday’s 1 1/8 miles allowance feature at Gulfstream Park, a race almost certain to yield a contender or two for the $750,000 Florida Derby (G1) to be run over the track and distance on Sat., Mar. 28.
Jockey Joe Bravo rides Atomic Rain for trainer Kelly Breen as he bids to bounce back from a dull seventh-place finish as one of the favorites in the Sam Davis Stakes (G3) at Tampa Bay Downs on Feb. 14.
MARCH SCHEDULE ACTION-PACKED AT TAMPA BAY DOWNS
OLDSMAR, Fla. (March 3, 2009) Sun Coast racing fans have much to anticipate in the month of March with live Thoroughbred excitement highlighted by on-track activities taking place five days a week at the Oldsmar oval.
Saturday, March 7 is the 18th edition of the $65,000 Challenger Stakes for four-year-olds and upward running 1 1/16 miles over the main track. March 7th also features Blues and Bar-B-Que, a day of Blues music and bar-b-qued ribs in the Picnic Area. The Blues and Bar-B-Que Festival will begin at noon with food, music and fun for the whole family. Sunday, March 8 is Family Fiesta Day in the Tampa Bay Downs Backyard. The family-friendly afternoon is hosted by Univision Television and will feature free Latin-themed entertainment and personalities, pony rides, games and more from noon until 3:00 PM.