Thursday, April 02 2009


LAUREL, MD. 04-02-09---Pure speed, stalkers and closers meet in Saturday’s six furlong, $50,000 Primonetta Stakes at Laurel Park. Nine fillies and mares are expected to face the starter, including five stakes winners.

Access Fee, the 2-1 morning line favorite, belongs in the speed camp. A winner of four of five starts at Laurel including the What A Summer Stakes on January 10, Access Fee dueled for the lead before finishing sixth in the Grade II Barbara Fritchie six weeks ago. She’s had time to regroup for trainer Larry Murray, with three morning drills including two bullet works. Luis Garcia, who will ride her for the first time, was aboard the March 20 drill when the pair went a half-mile in 46 seconds.

Read more articles in the Laurel category.


An Illinois Story-Local Connections in Rarified Air

Stickney, IL--Virginia and Rudy Tarra certainly hope so. It’s not often that an Illinois-owned 3-year-old is mentioned among the elite sophomores in the game. It’s far rarer when that runner was foaled in Illinois. Why this might be is a matter of conjecture but, needless to say, four leaf clovers are abundant in comparison.

Rudy Tarra was kind enough to talk about Giant Oak, the Virginia H Tarra Trust, and the state of racing in Illinois. I get a chance to run in a prestigious race like the Illinois Derby, you have to be excited. I consider him to be the best horse that we have ever had. I just hope we can do well Saturday.

Read more articles in the Hawthorne category.


Keeneland Barn Notes—Thursday, April 2, 2009


Adele Dilschneider’s Terrain, runner-up in last fall’s Lane’s End Breeders’ Futurity (G1), is scheduled for a five-furlong work on Saturday according to trainer Al Stall Jr.

“That’s the plan right now and he’ll work in company,” Stall said of Terrain, who had worked a half-mile in :48 in company last Sunday.

Read more articles in the Keeneland category.


Churchill Downs and Mattel Team Up to Create Kentucky Derby® Barbie® Doll

LOUISVILLE, KY (April 2, 2009) – With Kentucky Derby® 135 on May 2, 2009, quickly approaching, Churchill Downs, the legendary racetrack that hosts the annual “Run for the Roses®,” and Mattel are pleased to announce that they have teamed up to create the Kentucky Derby® Barbie® doll.

From the celebrities and socialites who attend to the awe-inspiring hats, the Kentucky Derby is more than just a horse race – it is a famed fashion event. This year, Barbie®, the ultimate fashion icon, showcases legendary Derby fashion with the launch of the Kentucky Derby® Barbie® doll, dressed in a playful floral sun dress, faux pearl necklace and sassy spring sandals. True to Kentucky Derby fashion, Barbie doll’s look is topped off with a stylish, oversized white hat with blossoming flower accents.

Read more articles in the Churchill Downs category.


Barn Notes 4-2-2009

Cool Gator Could Heat Up April for Orseno

With a five-win day last year Joe Orseno earned the distinction of being the leading trainer in the month of April at Gulfstream Park. This year the focus will be slightly different and he hopes Garland Williamson’s Cool Gator can start the month in a big way in the $100,000 Skip Away Stakes (G3) Saturday.

“Instead of winning five in one day, we’re going to try and win as many stakes as we can,” said Orseno as he mapped out plans for two or three of his best horses.

Read more articles in the Gulfstream category.


Special Events Offered from Start to Finish

Lexington, KY (April 2, 2009) – Keeneland will present world-class Thoroughbred racing during its 2009 spring season from April 3-24 and will offer fans a variety of events, from handicapping contests to an appearance by the famous Budweiser Clydesdales to fundraisers for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund to a day welcoming members of the military.

Opening day on Friday is College Scholarship Day, which is expected to draw thousands of students who attend colleges and universities in the area. Admission is free for students who present a valid college ID and enter through the East Gate. Full-time students also may register at the green and white tent located directly under the large TV screen in the paddock area to win one of ten $1,000 college scholarships to be given away after each race. One scholarship will be earmarked especially for students who have an affiliation with the horse industry.

Read more articles in the Keeneland category.


NYRA & DRF Partner on Saratoga Seminars


NEW YORK, NY, April 2, 2009 -- Daily Racing Form today announced that Harvey Pack is retiring as the longtime host of DRF’s popular daily Saratoga handicapping seminars, which is ending its 17-year run at Siro’s restaurant, and that DRF has entered into a strategic partnership with the New York Racing Association to sponsor and provide analysts for an expanded and reformatted “Talking Horses” for the Saratoga race meet.

“Talking Horses, Presented by Daily Racing Form” will be conducted in a live audience format in 2009. The popular longstanding daily television show will be extended to 45 minutes, 11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. every racing day and broadcast live in the Carousel Restaurant facing the grandstand backyard. Scratches and changes have been moved to 11:40 am to allow the live program to be broadcast uninterrupted on all on-track monitors.

Read more articles in the Saratoga category.


Safety first in new (old) starting gate

TORONTO, April 2 - Woodbine Entertainment Group has always believed that safety of horse and rider is paramount in the sport of Thoroughbred racing.

In 2007, the company installed Polytrack, a partially synthetic, all-weather surface at Woodbine. It was an important step in saluting that mandate.

The track's starting gate is also well-regarded by horsepeople across the continent for its high quality, durability and safety features for human and equine athletes.

Read more articles in the Woodbine category.


Wednesday, April 01 2009

WOOD MEMORIAL NOTES, Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Paraneck Stable’s Cellar Dweller breezed five furlongs in 1:01.21 on the main track at Aqueduct Racetrack this morning and later was entered in Saturday’s 85th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Wood Memorial for three-year-olds at nine furlongs.

The Rahy colt is out of Oriole Way, whose sire, Cahill Road, won the 1991 Wood Memorial. Paraneck Stable, headed by Ernie Paragallo, is a two-time Wood Memorial winner with Unbridled’s Song (1996) and Adonis (1999).

Read more articles in the Aqueduct category.



At this point in the Thoroughbred racing season, with just over four weeks until the Kentucky Derby on May 2, time has become even more precious. Horses that have flashed ability have to put it together and get enough graded stakes earnings to qualify for the Derby’s 20-horse field or miss the once-in-a-lifetime chance to “Run for the Roses” at Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May.

For I Want Revenge, the impressive winner of the Grade 3 Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct on March 7, Saturday’s 85th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Wood Memorial is another opportunity to show that his progress is far from complete. If he can deliver a similar effort in New York’s last major Kentucky Derby prep to his 8 ½-length Gotham romp, I Want Revenge will convince many that he will be the horse to beat in Kentucky.

Read more articles in the Aqueduct category.



Having a horse on the Kentucky Derby trail is something that most horsemen can only dream about. But for trainer Ian Wilkes and owners Joseph Rauch and David Zell, having fun is more important than dreams of Derby glory.

So when Capt. Candyman Can finished a well-beaten fourth as the favorite in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth to Quality Road, the trio had no qualms about pulling him off the road to the Triple Crown.

Read more articles in the Aqueduct category.



Charles E. Fipke’s Tale of Ekati looks for his third Grade 1 victory and a complete sweep of Aqueduct’s Grade 1 offerings for males in this Saturday’s $300,000 Carter Handicap at seven furlongs over the main track.

After finishing sixth in last year’s Louisiana Derby, the then-three-year-old son of Tale of the Cat returned to his home base in New York and ran down War Pass to finish first in the 2008 Wood Memorial. He closed out the year winning the Grade 1Hill ‘n’ Dale Cigar Mile upon Harlem Rocker’s disqualification for interference in the stretch.

Read more articles in the Aqueduct category.


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