Monday, July 21 2008
Calder Barn Notes: 7-20-08
Smooth Air Back Home and at Work at Calder
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 20, 2008) - Mount Joy Stable’s 3-year-old Florida homebred Smooth Air breezed an easy five furlongs in 1:02 2/5 Sunday morning at Calder Race Course for trainer Bennie Stutts, Jr., posting his first workout since romping to a four-length victory in the $300,000 Ohio Derby (G2) at Thistledown on May 31.
“We got back here about 10 days ago,” said the veteran horsemen, who took Smooth Air and 3-year-old filly stablemate Cubs Fan to Arlington Park to train after the Ohio Derby victory. Mount Joy owner Brian Burns and his family live in Chicago. One original plan for the Smooth Jazz colt’s next start after the Ohio race was the $250,000 Iowa Derby at Prairie Meadows in late June, but he was forced to miss that spot.
Tuesday, July 15 2008
Awesome Alexandra Bids for Fourth Straight in Thursday Feature
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 14, 2008) - Farnsworth Stables’ 4-year-old filly Awesome Alexandra has won her last three races at Calder Race Course by clear margins in starter/allowance competition, and trainer Marty Wolfson will take advantage of her ‘two other than’ allowance conditions for her next appearance Thursday as the likely odds-on favorite facing six rival fillies and mares at 6 ½ furlongs.
Apprentice jockey Paco Lopez gets a return call after riding Awesome Alexandra in all three of her easy victories at the meet, the first two sprinting by more than six lengths each time, and the last at 1 1/16 miles by 2 ½ lengths after that race on June 20 was forced off turf.
Juvenile Starter/Allowance Events Featured Friday
Two-year-olds will be in the spotlight on Friday’s 10-race program at Calder Race Course with a pair of starter/allowance races at five furlongs, one for colts and geldings and the other restricted to fillies that broke their maidens for a claiming tag of $32,000 or less.
Stride Rite Racing Stable and NTS Stable’s chestnut gelding Cinnamon Road may rule the choice in the colts and geldings division with apprentice Paco Lopez named to ride for trainer Milt Wolfson. The son of Delaware Township broke his maiden by 3 ¼ lengths going five furlongs on July 4 after a fourth-place debut as the favorite in a maiden special event.
Monday, July 14 2008
Calder Home Team Runners Hold Their Ground on ‘Summit’ Day
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 13, 2008) - Most of the headlines going into Saturday’s ‘Summit of Speed’ program at Calder Race Course were focused on the 14 high-profile invaders from coast-to-coast in the four Graded stakes events, but the Calder-based horsemen kept a fair share of the $1.3 million at home.
M375 Thoroughbreds and Suarez Racing’s 3-year-old Golden Spikes, trained by Marty Wolfson, was the only winner of one of the ‘Big Four’ events, capturing the $250,000 Carry Back Stakes (G2), but the Calder horsemen also came back with three runner-up performances, a third and two fourth-place finishes.
Calder’s Summit of Speed recap
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 13, 2008) – Calder Race Course presented its ninth annual Summit of Speed program, a day dedicated to sprint races – including four Graded stakes – on Saturday, July 12. The $400,000 Grade I Princess Rooney Handicap and $400,000 Grade II Smile Sprint Handicap, both Breeders’ Cup ‘Win and You’re In’ races for their respective divisions, highlighted the card that attracted a meet-to-date high attendance of 8,425 racing fans.
The enthusiastic on-track crowd wagered $731,114 on the 12-race program, which included a total six stakes races. Racing fans at inter-track wagering (ITW) facilities throughout the state of Florida bet another $442,512, while customers at intra-state wagering (ISW) locations around the country added $4,360,238 to bring the total handle to $5,533,864 – the highest of the season that began on April 21.
Saturday, July 12 2008
Calder Stakes Recap: Princess Rooney Handicap
Mistical Plan Posts Upset in Princess Rooney, Earns Trip to Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 12, 2008) – J. Paul Reddam’s 4-year-old California bred filly Mistical Plan upset the even-money favorite Dream Rush to win the $400,000 Princess Rooney Handicap (G1) at Calder Race Course on Saturday, Summit of Speed day. Miraculous Miss rallied late in the stretch to finish second, while Dream Rush settled for third place.
Ridden by jockey Corey Nakatani for trainer Doug O’Neill, Mistical Plan ran in tandem with Dream Rush for much of the six-furlong race until shaking loose from her rival at the quarter pole and then pouring it on down the stretch. Mistical Plan drew off to win by five and three-quarter lengths to get the distance in 1:10.76. Miraculous Miss was just a quarter length in front of Dream Rush at the wire.
Golden Spikes Gets First Graded Stakes Win in Carry Back Stakes (G2)
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 12, 2008) – M375 Thoroughbreds and Suarez Racing’s 3-year-old colt Golden Spikes won the $250,000 Carry Back Stakes (G2) at Calder’s Summit of Speed on Saturday, earning his first Graded stakes victory.
Ridden by jockey Elvis Trujillo for trainer Marty Wolfson, Golden Spikes defeated Gentleman James by three-quarters of a length and it was just a half-length back to Lantana Mob in third in a close finish.
Indyanne Remains Undefeated After Azalea, Scores First Graded Win
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 12, 2008) – Jill and David Heerensperger’s 3-year-old filly Indyanne scored another impressive, wide-margin victory when she won the $250,000 Azalea Stakes (G3) at Calder on Saturday by nine and a half lengths under jockey Russell Baze. It was the filly’s fourth consecutive win in as many starts and her first Graded stakes victory.
Trained by Greg Gilchrist at his Golden Gate Fields base, Indyanne made her first start outside of California in today’s event Summit of Speed event at Calder in Miami, Fla.
Additional Prayer Stays Perfect in J J’s Dream Stakes
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 12, 2008) – Janet Erwin and Terry Oliver’s 2-year-old filly Additional Prayer remains undefeated in two starts after her victory in the $55,000 J J’s Dream Stakes at Calder Race Course on Saturday. The J J’s Dream was the first of six stakes races that make up the track’s signature “Summit of Speed.”
Ridden by racing’s all-time leading jockey Russell Baze for trainer and co-owner Terry Oliver, Additional Prayer angled over from the post position six to get the lead and was never headed in the six furlong race. She covered the distance in 1:12.73.
Friday, July 11 2008
Asmussen Bids for Second ‘Summit’ Victory in Carry Back
There will be an intriguing subplot in play going into Saturday’s renewal of the $250,000 Carry Back Stakes (G2) for 3-year-olds on the ‘Summit of Speed’ card at Calder Race Course with North America’s leading trainer Steve Asmussen sending out Padua Stable’s Carson’s Legacy with jockey Edgar Prado aboard in the field of eight.
The morning-line favorite in the Carry Back at odds of 8-to-5 is Vinery Stable’s Lantana Mob, a son of Posse that was developed and trained through his first nine career starts by Asmussen until recently when Vinery transferred him to the care of trainer Michael Trombetta, based at Laurel Park in Maryland.
Busy Day for Plesa & Wolfson Stables Saturday on Two Fronts
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 11, 2008) - Veteran trainers Eddie Plesa, Jr. and Marty Wolfson will be in action with stakes runners on two fronts Saturday, both with multiple contenders on the rich ‘Summit of Speed’ program at Calder Race Course, and Graded stakes-winners running in major events at Monmouth Park and Delaware Park that afternoon.
Plesa has six horses entered in four races at Calder, including the one-two choices in the $55,000 Frank Gomez Memorial for 2-year-olds with J. Robert Harris, Jr.’s Bee Cee Cee and Padua Stable’s Ideal Exchange, and Joel Kligman’s 2-year-old filly Jungle Jill among the favorites in the $55,000 JJ’s Dream Stakes.
Looky Yonder Tests Calder Track Ahead of Princess Rooney
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (July 10, 2008) - Trainer Rick Dutrow, Jr. holds a strong hand on Saturday at Calder Race Course with IEAH Stables and partners’ 5-year-old Benny the Bull the favorite in the $400,000 Smile Sprint Handicap (G2) and Lansdon Robbins III’s 4-year-old filly Looky Yonder a top contender in the $400,000 Princess Rooney Handicap (G1) on the ‘Summit of Speed’ card.
Both sprint stars arrived in South Florida Tuesday on a Tex Sutton Forwarding charter flight from New York and Looky Yonder was given a test over the Calder track Thursday morning, breezing an easy three-eighths in 38 3/5 under assistant trainer and exercise rider Michelle Nevin. Hall of Fame jockey Edgar Prado will be on hand to ride both Dutrow stars on Saturday.