Saturday, July 25 2009


DOMINGUEZ GETS 93RD BELMONT WINNER TO SET RECORD


ELMONT, N.Y. – Jockey Ramon Dominguez set a modern-day record for victories at Belmont Park’s spring/summer meet when he guided Michael Dubb and Robert Joscelyn’s I’ve Got Speed ($7.70) to win the fifth race Friday, notching his 93rd winner for the meet.

Hall of Famer Angel Cordero, Jr., held the mark for most victories since records were first kept, bringing home 92 winners during the 1982 Belmont Park spring/summer meet. Fellow Hall of Famers Jose Santos and Mike Smith each had 86 winners for the 1986 and 1991 spring/summer meets, respectively.





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NYRA NOTES: Friday, July 24, 2009


Trainer Todd Pletcher has enjoyed a great deal of success at Saratoga Race Course, winning five of the last seven training titles, but as he says, a lot depends on the performance of the barn’s babies.

“Success for us depends on how our two-year-olds run,” he said Friday morning at Belmont Park. “A lot are getting ready, and we should find out a lot more in a couple of weeks. You can only do what you can with what you have.”





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Thursday, July 23 2009


NYRA ANNOUNCES JOE HIRSCH MEMORIAL WRITING AWARD


ELMONT, N.Y. – The New York Racing Association, Inc., is pleased to announce the establishment of the Joe Hirsch Memorial Writing Award to recognize outstanding print and internet coverage of the Belmont Stakes.

Open to any member of the print/internet media who covered the 141st Belmont Stakes, won by Summer Bird, on June 6, 2009, the inaugural Joe Hirsch Memorial Writing Award will accept entries in two categories: Belmont Stakes feature/advance, and Belmont Stakes wrap-up.





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FINAL GRADED STAKES OF BELMONT MEET DRAWS EIGHT FILLIES


ELMONT, N.Y. – Boasting a roster of past champions that reads like a who’s who of sophomore fillies, from Vagrancy and Top Flight to Shuvee and Ruffian, Davona Dale and Sky Beauty to My Flag and Ashado, the Grade 1, $300,000 Coaching Club American Oaks will be run for the 93rd time on Saturday, the final graded stakes race at Belmont Park before racing moves upstate to Saratoga.

A field of eight 3-year-old fillies is set to go postward in the 1¼-mile race, headed by the multiple graded-stakes winning Hightap, from the barn of trainer Steve Asmussen. Owned by Ron Winchell, Hightap comes into the Coaching Club American Oaks off back-to-back victories in a pair of Grade 3 events, the Dogwood at Churchill Downs and the Iowa Oaks at Prairie Meadows.





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NYRA NAMES ELLEN MCCLAIN AS SENIOR VP & CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER


ELMONT, N.Y. -- The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) announced today that Ellen McClain has been named senior vice president and chief financial officer. In her position, McClain will oversee all NYRA financials, including accounting, budgeting, and forecasting. She will start with the company in mid-August.

From 2004 to 2009, she served as the vice president of finance for Hearst-Argyle Television, Inc., a publicly traded group operator of 29 local television stations. In her role, she managed a team of professionals engaged in all aspects of corporate finance, including accounting, audit, internal and external reporting, budgeting, and forecasting and investor relations.





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SARATOGA SIMULCAST AT BELMONT PARK


ELMONT, N.Y. – While The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) moves its base of operations from Belmont Park to Saratoga Race Course beginning July 29, fans and horse players can catch all the upstate action right here on Long Island through Labor Day.

For all race days during the duration of the Saratoga meet (Wednesday – Monday, July 29 – Sept. 7, 2009) the first and second floor of the Belmont Park Clubhouse, including the Belmont Café and the backyard, will be open for simulcast wagering. On Saturdays and Sundays only, the North Shore Terrace on the fourth floor of the Belmont Clubhouse will also be open. For credentialed NYRA Rewards members and guests only, the Players Club rooms located in the Paddock Dining Area on the second floor will be open, though guest maximums may apply on certain dates.





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Tuesday, July 21 2009


RACHEL ALEXANDRA ‘ON TARGET’ FOR HASKELL


Stonestreet Stables’ and Harold McCormick’s Preakness and multiple Grade 1 stakes winner Rachel Alexandra put in her third workout over the Oklahoma Training Track at Saratoga Race Course Monday morning since winning the Mother Goose more than three weeks ago.

With regular exercise rider Dominic Terry up at 6 a.m., Rachel Alexandra breezed six furlongs in 1:13.88, the best of six workouts at that distance for the morning.





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Sunday, July 19 2009


“BARGAIN” SILVER TIMBER TAKES JAIPUR


ELMONT, N.Y. – Silver Timber, already a successful claim for trainer Chad Brown and owner Michael Dubb, made it even more worthwhile Saturday afternoon at Belmont Park when he pulled clear of favored Heros Reward in the stretch and went on to a 1½-length victory in the 26th running of the Grade 3, $156,00 Jaipur Stakes.

Ridden by Eibar Coa, the 6-year-old gelded son of Prime Timber dueled saddlecloth-to-saddlecloth through fractions of 21.71 and 44.53 with the even-money choice, then edged away to hit the wire in 1:07.60 for the six furlongs over the firm turf to earn his first stakes victory.





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Friday, July 17 2009


BELMONT PARK NOTES: Friday, July 17, 2009


ELMONT, N.Y. – A field of six 3-year-old fillies appears likely for next Saturday’s Grade 1, $300,000 Coaching Club American Oaks, the final stakes race at Belmont Park before racing moves up the Northway to Saratoga Race Course.

Edward P. Evans’ Casanova Move, Godolphin Stable’s Devotee, Alan Brodsky’s Don’t Forget Gil, Mrs. C. Wilson McNeely III’s Funny Moon, Ron Winchell’s Hightap and Puglisi Racing’s Livin Lovin are probable starters in the 1 1/4 mile race, which will be run for the 93rd time. Tri-Bone Stables’ What a Pear is questionable.





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Thursday, July 16 2009


MEXICAN CONSUL GENERAL TO VISIT ANNA HOUSE


ELMONT, N.Y. – The Honorable Ruben Beltran, Mexico’s consul general in New York, will visit the Belmont Child Care Association’s (BCCA) Anna House on Wednesday, July 22, to thank the BCCA, The New York Racing Association, Inc., and the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NYTHA) for the work these organizations do to support the Mexican community in New York.

Ambassador Beltran will arrive at Anna House on the Belmont Park backstretch between 11 and 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday. After a tour of the facility and brief remarks, there will be a reception open to the Mexican community of both Belmont Park and Aqueduct Racetrack. Following the reception, the Ambassador will spend the afternoon at Belmont Park, where a race will be named in honor of the Mexican Consulate.





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Wednesday, July 15 2009


JERKENS SEEKS FIFTH JAIPUR WIN ON SATURDAY


ELMONT, N.Y. – No trainer has enjoyed as much success in Belmont Park’s Grade 3, $150,000 Jaipur as Hall of Famer H. Allen Jerkens, who has won the turf sprint four times in the past ten years.

Jerkens, who will saddle Judson L. Streicher’s Le Grand Cru in Saturday’s 26th running of the Jaipur, first won the race in 1999 with Jacobson and Harbor View’s Notoriety, again in 2003 with Joseph V. Shield’s Garnered, and in 2005 and 2007 with Joseph Allen’s Ecclesiastic.





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Sunday, July 12 2009


GIO PONTI AT THE TOP OF HIS GAME IN MAN o’WAR


ELMONT, N.Y. – After a wide trip all the way around, Gio Ponti edged away through the final sixteenth to win the 51st running of the Grade 1, $500,000 Man o’War by 1 ¾-lengths under red-hot jockey Ramon Dominguez Saturday afternoon at Belmont Park.

In hand leaving the first turn, the four-year-old son of Tale of the Cat sat well off the rail through slow early fractions of 25.23 and 49.99 set by longshot Musketier (GER). After circling five-wide entering the stretch, Gio Ponti quickly closed the gap and took over the lead from pacesetting Musketier, who held on to finish second. The final time for the mile and three-eighths was 2:12.56 over a firm inner turf course.





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