Friday, December 19 2008
VICTORY PETE CRUISES UNDER SMITH IN HOLLYPARK FEATURE
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Dec. 18, 2008) — Victory Pete took command from the start and cruised to a 5 1/2-length victory over Lake Meza under Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith in Thursday’s $39,400 allowance feature at Hollywood Park.
A change in surface didn’t adversely affect the 7-5 favorite as he covered 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track in 1:41.82 to win for the second time in eight starts. The 3-year-old son of Five Star Day was making his second start following an eight-month layoff.
BAFFERT HOLDS A PAIR AS HE AIMS FOR RECORD-TYING FOURTH WIN
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Dec. 18, 2008) — Bob Baffert will aim for a record-tying fourth CashCall Futurity victory when he saddles Pioneerof the Nile and Ventana in the 28th running of the $750,000 event Saturday at Hollywood Park.
Baffert’s most recent winner — Point Given in 2000 — was more accomplished entering the Grade I event, but his first — Real Quiet in 1997 — was less heralded. Both went on to win two legs of the Triple Crown, Point Given the Preakness and Belmont and Real Quiet the Kentucky Derby and Preakness. Real Quiet came within a nose of sweeping the Triple Crown.
Hollywood Park Stable Notes: Thursday, December 18, 2008
BEJARANO SEEKS TO ADD FUTURITY JEWEL TO MEET CROWN
Agent Joe Ferrer saluted jockey Rafael Bejarano for clinching the Autumn Meet title at Hollywood Park — completing a rare sweep of all five major stops on the Southern California circuit in 2008 — but admitted that something was missing.
“In a way, it’s been a very uneventful meet,” said Ferrer Thursday. “Rafael has won a lot of races, but not any major ones.”
Hawthorne Handicapping Challenge Goes to Thoroughbred Owner
Stickney, IL--Prominent owner Jeff Barnes has not only been having a good Hawthorne fall meet with his horses but he just earned a trip to Las Vegas…along with $25,000 to spend and an entry into the Coast Casino Horseplayer World Series contest. In fact, Jeff won two entries into the contest. He not only finished first in the overall handicapping event, he won the Sunday’s series of qualifiers, earning another entry. But, since only one entry per person is allowed, Jeff magnanimously passed the other entry to a friend. What a guy!
The contest, held on December 13 and 14 awarded the players who earned the most money with a starting bankroll of $250 on both Saturday and Sunday. There was no entry fee and the players kept all winnings.
Read more articles in the Hawthorne
STERLING MISTY BEATS FAVORED ALPINE YODEL BY A NOSE
ALBANY -- Sterling Misty, an 8-to-1 outsider ridden by Alex Bisono, defeated even-money favorite Alpine Yodel by a nose in the $28,600 turf feature at Golden Gate Fields Thursday.
Alpine Yodel and jockey Russell Baze came up just inches short of scoring a wire-to-wire victory in the one-mile contest for 3-year-old fillies. They were denied by Sterling Misty, who tracked the favorite from the start and got her nose down on the wire.
Sterling Mistry returned $18.40 after completing a mile on a "yielding" Lakeside Turf Course in 1:37.59. Trained by Bill Delia and owned by Marshall Boschetti, Sterling Misty earned $18,000 for the victory.
Arqaam spearheads Watson double
Arqaam won the featured 2400m handicap at Nad Al Sheba’s seventh meeting of the season, kindly sponsored by Al Nasr Leisureland, on Thursday evening.
Trained by Champion Trainer Doug Watson, he was partnered by Richard Hills, retained jockey to the horse’s owner His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum and was produced to lead in the dying strides to deny Hawks Home.
Read more articles in the Meydan
TWENTY-FOUR HANDICAPPERS TO REPRESENT ARLINGTON PARK IN UPCOMING NATIONAL HANDICAPPING TOURNAMENTS
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Dec. 18, 2008) – A record 24 contestants from seven states will represent Arlington Park at upcoming national handicapping tournaments in Las Vegas. Nine handicappers earned berths in the NTRA/DRF National Handicapping Challenge X (NHC) to be held at the Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa on Jan. 23-24, 2009, while 15 others will compete in the 2009 Horseplayer World Series (HPWS) at The Orleans from Feb. 19-21. (The complete list of qualifiers appears at the end of this news release.)
For the first time in 2008 in addition to its traditional NTRA/DRF qualifiers, Arlington Park offered “live-money” contests, at the track itself as well as across much of its Trackside OTB network, and the success of those contests has lead to an expansion of the contests for 2009 to begin in the spring. Contest winners and other top tier finishers won $84,975 in prize money in addition to earning berths in the two national tournaments.
Thursday, December 18 2008
ARTERBURN, McBRIDE SCORE TRAINING DOUBLES STEWARDS’ REPORT NOW ONLINE
OLDSMAR, Fla. (December 17, 2008) Conditioners Lonnie Arterburn and Barbara McBride took two trips to the Winner’s Circle each today, with siblings Mike and Ron Allen riding their respective trainees. Lonnie Arterburn, who owns both of his winners, teamed up with Mike Allen for their first win on the card with Garbo and Me, a two-year-old You And I filly who scored her first lifetime win in only her second career attempt. Arterburn’s other winner was Orozco, a seven-year-old Halo’s Image gelding bred in Florida by Pat Thompson.
Canterbury Park To Host Claiming Crown For 9th Time
Shakopee, MN -- Canterbury Park will host Claiming Crown for the ninth time in the event's 11-year history when the one-of-a-kind program for thoroughbred racing's "blue-collar" performers is held there next summer on Saturday, July 25. Patterned after the Breeders' Cup, the $600,000 Claiming Crown consists of seven races offered at varying distances on both dirt and turf.
"Claiming Crown annually attracts some of America's winningest horses and trainers, including such leading conditioners as Steve Asmussen and Scott Lake," said Randy Sampson, president and general manager of the track located in the Minneapolis suburb of Shakopee. "We are looking forward to their participation again in 2009."
HP Stable Notes: Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2008
AXEL FOLEY POISED FOR UPSET IN $750,000 FUTURITY
Martin Smith, assistant and exercise rider for English trainer John Best, hopes the stable enjoys as much success in the $750,000 CashCall Futurity Saturday at Hollywood Park with Axel Foley as it did with Square Eddie in the Breeders Futurity at Keeneland in October.
Axel Foley looms as the mystery horse in the Grade I Futurity at 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track. He galloped on the main track for the second straight morning Wednesday after clearing quarantine here Monday following a 12-hour flight from Luxemburg to LAX Friday.
BAZE RIDES FOUR WINNERS TO REACH 100-VICTORY MARK AT GGF FALL MEETING
ALBANY -- Russell Baze rode four winners Wednesday at Golden Gate Fields and the four-bagger powered the Hall of Famer to the 100-win mark at fall meeting.
The 67-day fall session concludes Sunday and Baze heads into the final\ four days of the season with a huge 100-56 advantage in the jockey standings over Frank Alvarado. Roberto Gonzalez is third with 54 wins.
Baze won the first race with Crafty Power ($5.00), the third with Hornung ($2.60), the fourth with Devil Cielo ($5.40) and the sixth with Islandhoppertopper ($5.00).
Shadwell supports Jebel Ali’s first feature
Friday’s third meeting of the current season, kindly sponsored by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s Shadwell, features the first of three Listed races on the course this season.
With AED500,000 on offer, the 1950m Jebel Ali Stakes feature has attracted a quality field of 12, including last year’s winner Anani, the runner-up Remaadd and the 2006 winner Singing Poet.