Saturday, September 27 2008
DYNAFORCE IS DYNAMITE IN FLOWER BOWL INVITATIONAL
By Jenny Kellner
Three months ago, John A. Chandler’s Dynaforce overcame everything but rising turf star Mauralakana in the Grade 2 New York Handicap at Belmont Park, finishing second by a neck in her very first start in the United States.
On a muggy Saturday afternoon at Belmont Park, the 5-year-old mare turned the tables on Mauralakana as she led almost every step over a yielding turf course to post a four-length upset victory in the 31st edition of the Grade 1, $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational.
COCOA BEACH ENDS GINGER PUNCH’S STREAK
By Francis LaBelle Jr.
Godolphin Stable’s Cocoa Beach has raced in her native Chile and in the Mideast, but apparently, she has found a home in New York.
Fresh off a dominant win at Saratoga Race Course on August 29, the 4-year-old Doneraile Court filly collared defending Eclipse champion handicap mare Ginger Punch Saturday afternoon and went on to a half-length victory in 70th running of the Grade 1, $600,000 Beldame Stakes for fillies and mares at nine furlongs.
The threat of serious rain cancelled racing at Belmont Park on Friday, and the main track opened on Saturday as “muddy/sealed.” By post time for the Beldame at 3:40 p.m., the track was sloppy, and the scratch of Unbridled Belle left the Beldame with a field of four.
Spreading the News about Curlin and The Jockey Club Gold Cup
The New York Racing Association is using a full range of media opportunities to promote the third consecutive appearance of Curlin at one of its tracks. The reigning Horse of the Year headlines Saturday’s 90th running of the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup (race 10, 5:52 p.m.) at Belmont Park. If he wins the 11/4-mile contest, Curlin will surpass Cigar and become the highest earning Thoroughbred in American racing history, the first to reach $10 million dollars in purse money won.
On track, fans have been seeing a Jockey Club Gold Cup promo on the self -service betting terminals and light-boxes featuring bright, colorful “Curlin in the Gold Cup” imagery have been installed prominently around Belmont Park.
Friday, September 26 2008
GIANT WRECKER HOPING TO “COME OF AGE” IN KELSO
When Giant Wrecker showed up in Anthony Dutrow’s barn this past April, the trainer could only shake his head in admiration. Still productive at age 6, the son of Giant’s Causeway also brought with him a zest for racing that remains unabated.
“He really enjoys being a racehorse,” said Dutrow of Giant Wrecker, who previously was trained by Mark Hennig. “He’s happy, man. He likes it. All of us horse people care about our horses as if they were our children, and when they’re around as long as he’s been, they become someone really special to their connections. A lot goes into planning their campaigns. Mark did a great job with him.”
JACKSON CURLIN FOR KIDS FUND TO DONATE $100,000 TO ANNA HOUSE
ELMONT, NEW YORK (September 26, 2008) -- Saturday morning, several hours before Stonestreet Stable’s defending Horse of the Year Curlin attempts to make history in the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup, one of his owners, Barbara R. Banke, will deliver books and a check for $100,000 from “Jackson Curlin For Kids” to Anna House, Belmont Park’s on-track day care center for the children of backstretch workers at Belmont Park, Aqueduct Racetrack and Saratoga Race Course.
Banke and her husband, Jess Jackson, are the majority owners of Curlin, who will become the first American Thoroughbred to earn $10 million if he can win the 90th running of the prestigious Grade 1, 1¼-mile Jockey Club Gold Cup.
RACING CANCELLED AT BELMONT PARK TODAY
With Belmont Park hit with an inch and a half of rain overnight and the prediction that two more inches, accompanied by high winds, are on the way today, the New York Racing Association has cancelled today’s live racing program. Belmont Park will remain open for simulcast wagering and the NYRA Rewards account wagering Telebet option will be available as well.
Today’s cancellation will also enable NYRA to keep Belmont Park’s track and turf courses in the best condition possible for Saturday’s race card, which features five Grade 1 stakes, topped by the 90th running of the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup. With a win in the Jockey Club Gold Cup, reigning Horse of the Year Curlin would become the first American thoroughbred to top $10 million in career earnings.
Thursday, September 25 2008
AWAITING HISTORY IN THE JOCKEY CLUB GOLD CUP
Through history, the Thoroughbreds who became America’s leading money-earner rank amongst the greatest racehorses of all time, from Man o’War to Seabiscuit, Citation to Kelso, Alysheba to Cigar.
Saturday at Belmont Park, reigning Horse of the Year Curlin seeks to add his name atop that exclusive list and become American’s first $10 million horse in the 90th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup Invitational.
FILLIES LOOK TO GRAB A SHARE OF THE SPOTLIGHT ON SATURDAY
They’re fast. They’re determined. They’re gifted. And Saturday at Belmont Park, both Ginger Punch and Mauralakana (FR) take another step toward championship honors as the respective favorites in the Grade 1, $600,000 Beldame and the Grade 1, $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational on the turf.
The nine-furlong Beldame (Race 6, 3:40 p.m.) and the Flower Bowl, at 1¼ miles (Race 7, 4:13 p.m.) are but two of five Grade 1 races on the day, headlined by the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup, in which reigning Horse of the Year Curlin goes for a repeat victory and a chance to become the first American horse to break the $10 million barrier. Also on Saturday’s card are the $600,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational and the $400,000 Vosburgh at six furlongs.
J BE K LOOKS FOR HIS OWN STAR POWER IN VOSBURGH
He may be overshadowed by his famous stablemate, reigning Horse of the Year Curlin, but on Saturday, Zayat Stables’ 3-year-old speedster J Be K is looking to generate some buzz of his own in the 69th running of the Grade 1, $400,000 Vosburgh at Belmont Park.
The leading East Coast prep for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita on October 25, the Vosburgh (race 8, 4:46 p.m.) is part of a five-race Grade 1 extravaganza at Belmont, the centerpiece of which is the Grade 1, $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup Invitational, in which Curlin will attempt to become the first American horse to break the $10 million barrier. Also on Saturday are the $600,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational, the $600,000 Flower Bowl for fillies and mares on the turf and the $600,000 Beldame, also for fillies and mares.
STRIKE A DEAL COULD SAY `CHEESE!’ IN TURF CLASSIC WIN PHOTO
For years, Alan Goldberg forged a reputation as a dangerous trainer, one who does not ship in for races on a whim but on a real chance for a win.
And Saturday afternoon, he hopes to live up to his reputation when he sends Jayeff B Stable’s Strike a Deal to Belmont Park for the 32nd running of the Grade 1, $600,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational at a mile and a half on the Widener Turf Course.
Although the star of the day is defending Horse of the Year Curlin and his quest to become the first American horse to earn $10 million when he goes to post later in the day in the 90th running of the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup, Strike a Deal has a big chance to upstage the day if he can win the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic and end an eight-race losing streak. The Joe Hirsch Turf Classic will be race 9 (5:19 p.m. Eastern) on the 11-race card and will be the third leg of a guaranteed $500,000, all Grade 1 Pick 4.
MSG PLUS to telecast the JOCKEY CLUB GOLD CUP
New York, NY, September 25, 2008 – MSG Plus, in partnership with New York Racing Association (NYRA), announced today that for the first time the network will telecast the Jockey Club Gold Cup live from Belmont Park on Saturday, September 27 at 5:30 p.m. The frontrunner for this year’s 90th running of the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup is Curlin, arguably the top thoroughbred in the world, who is chasing one more big win to become racing’s first $10 million horse.
“On the heels of televising the Woodward Stakes, we are excited to provide racing fans with live coverage of the Jockey Club Gold Cup on MSG Plus this Saturday,” stated Lydia Murphy-Stephans, executive vice president of programming and production, MSG Media. “This continues our commitment to offer New York area sports fans coverage of a variety of first-rate sporting events, and adds to our expanding lineup of premier horse racing programming.”
Wednesday, September 24 2008
CURLIN ARRIVES AT BELMONT PARK
Stonestreet Stable’s Curlin, the defending Horse of the Year, arrived at Belmont Park Tuesday afternoon after a “very uneventful” van ride from Saratoga Race Course.
With a victory in Saturday’s 90th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup, the 4-year-old Smart Strike colt will become American racing’s all-time leading money winner and the first American Thoroughbred to reach $10 million in career earnings. The winner’s purse of the Jockey Club Gold Cup is $450,000.
Curlin arrived at Belmont Park at 1:15 p.m. and was in his barn 15 minutes later. After some time in his stall and one turn around the shedrow, he was given a bath. Playful in the autumn air, Curlin’s dappled chestnut body lit up underneath the September sun.