Sunday, August 09 2009


SARATOGA RACE COURSE NOTES: Saturday, August 8, 2009


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Colonel John, winner of the 2008 Shadwell Travers, could return to the scene of his most famous triumph in the Grade 1, $500,0000 Woodward on September 5, trainer Eoin Harty said.

Since winning last year’s Travers by a nose over Mambo in Seattle, Colonel John has gone 1-for-3, including a sixth-place finish in last years Breeders’ Cup Classic. The colt’s most recent start was a win in the one-mile Wickerr Stakes over the Del Mar turf course, his first start on that surface.





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Friday, August 07 2009


SARATOGA RACE COURSE NOTES: Friday, August 7, 2009


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- Belmont Stakes winner Summer Bird took his first tour of Saratoga Race Course’s main track on Friday morning, jogging an easy mile under exercise rider Liandro Atempa. Trainer Tim Ice said the son of 2004 Belmont winner Birdstone would gallop 1½ miles Saturday morning as he prepares for his next start, the Grade 1, $1 million Shadwell Travers on Saturday, August 29.

“The rider said he looked around a little bit and that he was feeling good,” said Ice. “He was on his toes, and feeling high-spirited. We wanted him to get loosened up and get a feel for the track. Tomorrow, when he gallops, he’ll have blinkers on.”





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FASIG-TIPTON FESTIVAL OF RACING HEADLINES WEEKEND AT SARATOGA RACE COURSE


Fasig-Tipton Festival of Racing: The Fasig-Tipton Festival of Racing, August 8 and 9, will celebrate the rich partnership between racing and yearling sales with a variety of special events, a celebrity race call, best-turned-out horse (and people!) contests and an innovative, free speaker series for fans. Ushering in two evenings of sales on August 10 and 11 at the newly-remodeled Humphrey S. Finney Sales Pavilion on East Avenue, the centerpiece of the Festival is two days of world-class racing, including two new overnight stakes, courtesy of Fasig-Tipton: on Saturday, the John Hettinger Stakes will be run on the main track while on Sunday, the Finney Stakes will be run on the turf. Fasig-Tipton is also sponsoring a “Best Turned-Out Horse” contest for both stakes, with the winning grooms to receive a cash prize of $500.





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SARATOGA RACE COURSE TO HOST LEGENDS OF THE GRIDIRON


WHAT: NFL Alumni Day at Saratoga Race Course

WHEN: Monday, August 10
11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

WHERE: Saratoga Race Course
Jockey Silks Room





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THE TRAVERS CELEBRATION TO HONOR 2008 TRAVERS STAKES CHAMPION COLONEL JOHN


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – The Travers Celebration, Saratoga Race Course’s only evening event, will return for its ninth year to honor 2008 Travers champion Colonel John on Thursday, August 27, just two-days before the running of the 140th edition of the Grade 1, $1 million Shadwell Travers Stakes.

The Travers Celebration will feature an elaborate cocktail reception, dinner, dancing to the music of the Times Square Orchestra and a silent auction. The event gets underway at 7:30 p.m. with cocktails at the jockey fountain followed by dinner at 8:30 p.m. in the “At the Rail” pavilion.





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LAW ENFORCEMENT RULES JOHN MORRISSEY


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Taking advantage of furious early fractions, Law Enforcement came from far back to overtake heavily favored Driven by Success in the final yards and go onto a 1¼-length victory Monday in the $72,050 John Morrissey Stakes for New York-breds at Saratoga Race Course.

Under Hall of Fame jockey Kent Desormeaux, Law Enforcement was content to drop 14 lengths behind as Driven by Success blazed through a pressured opening quarter in 21.65, with the half going in 43.87. The 2-5 favorite held a clear advantage into deep stretch, but Law Enforcement circled five wide to launch his bid down the middle of the track, hitting the wire in 1:14.76 for the 6½-furlongs over a fast track.





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PORTE BONHEUR FACES TOUGH TEST IN HONORABLE MISS


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – So far this year, Porte Bonheur has done everything right. On Sunday, trainer David Duggan hopes she will take the next step forward in the 18th running of the Grade 2, $150,000 Honorable Miss Handicap for older fillies and mares going six furlongs.

Coming off a nearly seven-month layoff, the 4-year-old daughter of Hennessy ran second to Carolyn’s Cat in the Grade 2 Vagrancy Handicap at Belmont Park in her first start of 2009. Stretching out to seven furlongs for the first time in the Grade 2 First Flight at Belmont on June 28, Porte Bonheur prevailed over Spritely by a nose.





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FABULOUS STRIKE IMPOSING IN VANDERBILT


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. — As fast as the other horses signed up for Sunday’s 25th running of the Grade 2, $250,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt are, their trainers know that any path to the winner’s circle must lead through Fabulous Strike.

The dark bay or brown 6-year-old gelding, owned by Walter Downey and trained by Todd Beattie, has time and again proven to be among the very best six-furlong sprinters in the country. After two forays at seven furlongs to start the year, including a head loss in the Grade 1 Carter Handicap at Aqueduct, Fabulous Strike returned to his preferred distance in June to win the Grade 2 True North at Belmont Park, setting the stage for the Vanderbilt, his first start at Saratoga Race Course.





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Saratoga Race Course Notes: Thursday, August 06, 2009


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Stonestreet Stable’s Rachel Alexandra was on the Oklahoma training track this morning for a gallop and will return to the work tab next week, most likely on Tuesday, said trainer Steve Asmussen.

“It will probably be Tuesday with (her last) race being on Sunday and the shipping,” he said. “It will be real light, like we always do the first time back. Then we’ll probably accelerate her to the following Monday. That’s what I thought this morning.





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NO CONFUSING MIXED UP IN SMITHWICK VICTORY


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – William Pape’s 10-year-old gelding Mixed Up rallied through the stretch after taking the final hurdle and went on to a half-length victory over Preemptive Strike in Thursday’s Grade 1, $105,723 A.P. Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase at Saratoga Race Course.

The win gave jockey Danielle Hodsdon a unique riding double at the Spa as well as giving Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard a second Grade 1 victory at the meet, having saddled Forever Together to win the August 1 Diana.





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Thursday, August 06 2009


COCOA BEACH COMES BACK STRONG IN DE LA ROSE


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Making her second start off a long layoff in Wednesday’s $76,850 De La Rose Stakes, Godolphin Stable’s Cocoa Beach (CHI), a two-time Grade 1 winner in 2008, proved she’s ready to make a comeback.

Sent off as the heavy favorite along with coupled entry Skylighter in the field of nine, Cocoa Beach settled off of early fractions of 23.14 and 45.92 set by Lucky Copy. Four wide into the turn, the 5-year-old mare challenged My Baby Baby in the stretch to finish first by a neck.





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CAT MOVES SET TO POUNCE IN TEST


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Trainer Anthony Dutrow is off to a great start at Saratoga Race Course.

Saturday, it could get even better.

That’s when Dutrow, who by the end of the first week of racing had sent out seven starters and come back with three wins, one second and three third-place finishes, saddles undefeated Cat Moves against seven other 3-year-old fillies in the Grade 1, $300,000 Test Stakes.





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