Friday, January 09 2009
AQUEDUCT RACETRACK NOTES--Friday, January 9, 2009
Jockey John Velazquez will be featured as celebrity guest presenter on a new television reality series, “The Real Winning Edge,” in syndication nationwide. Velazquez will appear in an episode airing in New York on WNYW- FOX 5 TV this Saturday, January 10, at 9 a.m.
The series features high school and college students who overcome challenges, such as illness or poverty, to excel in sports and the performing arts. Other athletes serving as guest presenters on the series include David Tyree of the New York Giants, Albert Pujols of the St. Louis Cardinals, Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames, Olympic Gold medal short-track speed skater Apolo Ohno and other notables from NASCAR, the NBA, professional golf and other sports.
Read more articles in the Aqueduct
LEGENDARY TURF WRITER JOE HIRSCH, 80, DIES
New York, NY, Jan. 9 -- Joe Hirsch, the dean of American turf writers, died Friday morning at St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital Center in New York. He was 80.
A funeral service will be held Sunday, 10 a.m. at Plaza Jewish Community Chapel, 630 Amsterdam Ave. at 91st Street in Manhattan.
HRTV, Hennegan Brothers Documentary “The First Saturday in May” Wins National Television-Features Me
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA), Daily Racing Form and the National Turf Writers Association announced today that the Hennegan Brothers documentary "The First Saturday in May," which chronicled the stories of six horses and their connections on the journey to the 2006 Kentucky Derby, has won the 2008 Media Eclipse Award in the National Television Feature programming category. The 90-minute program aired on HorseRacing TV (HRTV) on October 28, 2008.
This is the second Eclipse Award for HRTV, which won the 2006 National Television Media Eclipse Award for the Pony Highway Production of "On the Muscle; Portrait of a Thoroughbred Racing Stable."
TERRACES INTRODUCES NEW MENU, VIP AREA; PEGASUS TO BUILD ON GROUP BUSINESS IN 2009
East Rutherford, NJ [Jan. 9, 2009] -- Meadowlands Racetrack and ARAMARK, the racetrack’s exclusive caterer and food and beverage service provider, will unveil several exciting changes to the racetrack’s Terraces and Pegasus restaurants in 2009.
Terraces will become the track’s premier dining destination with a new, contemporary menu that focuses on the use of locally grown, seasonal ingredients. The menu will feature bistro classics with a twist, such as Classic Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons, Steak Frites and Roasted Free Range Chicken. New menu items will be introduced weekly.
Keeneland January Sale Opens Monday
Lexington, KY (January 9, 2009) – Keeneland kicks off its 2009 sale season on Monday with its January Horses of All Ages Sale.
The six-day auction, which runs January 12-17, will feature the sale of 2002 Horse of the Year Azeri, offered in foal to 2004 Horse of the Year Ghostzapper. Azeri is one of only six fillies ever to win Horse of the Year honors, and the only female to earn three Eclipse Awards as champion older mare (2002, 2003 and 2004).
Read more articles in the Keeneland
Kip Deville Kicks on Target for Gulfstream Park Turf
The 2007 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) winner and 2008 runner-up Kip Deville worked out Friday morning at Gulfstream Park for his IEAH Stables partners and trainer Rick Dutrow as he prepares for his 2009 seasonal debut in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (G1) on Feb. 1.
“‘Kip’ was on his game this morning,” said Dutrow after the six-furlong breeze on the main track in 1:15 4/5 under regular jockey Cornelio Velasquez. The 6-year-old gray son of Kipling has worked twice since returning from a ninth-place finish in the Hong Kong Mile (G1) on Dec. 14.
Plavius takes feature but Watson and Jara in treble form
Friday afternoon’s meeting at Jebel Ali was a rescheduled fixture from the previous week when called off after the sad death His Highness Sheikh Rashid Bin Ahmad Al Mualla, the ruler of Umm Al Quwain.
The Shadwell organisation of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum again sponsored the afternoon’s feature, on this occasion a 1600m handicap which was won impressively by Plavius.
Steve Sexton on the death of retired Daily Racing Forn Executive Columnist Joe Hirsch
“Joe Hirsch earned and deserved universal respect and admiration throughout Thoroughbred racing. Owners, breeders, trainers, jockeys, grooms, racing executives, members of the media, and lovers of racing around the world revered Joe for his immense knowledge, remarkable talent and positive impact on our sport. But those who had to good fortune to know or simply meet him through the years will remember Joe for the incredible kindness he displayed to all who crossed his path. Countless journalists benefited from his guidance and counsel, and the Kentucky Derby and Thoroughbred racing are stronger because of the work and influence of Joe Hirsch. Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby family are deeply saddened by his passing, and mourn that his insightful and impassioned voice is now quiet. One of Joe's most memorable sentences came in a Daily Racing Form piece on five-time ‘Horse of the Year’ Kelso in which he wrote: ‘Once upon a time there was a horse named Kelso … but only once.’ Let us borrow Joe’s brilliant phrase and proclaim today that once upon a time, there was a special journalist and man named Joe Hirsch … but only once.”
TWO-DAY PICK SIX CARRYOVER OF $423,985 AT SANTA ANITA FRIDAY
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2009) – After four one-day carryovers in the Pick Six during the first ten days of racing, Santa Anita will have a two-day carryover of $423,985 on Friday when the track offers free general admission. The combined Friday pool is expected to exceed $2 million and could approach $3 million.
With a pair of blowout winners paying $94.60 and $50.60 on Thursday, there were no winning tickets for a second successive day in the popular multiple-race wager that can result in enormous payoffs.
DRAMATIC SANTA ANITA WIN FOR COVINA FAMILY DEVASTED IN CHRISTMAS EVE MASSACRE
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2009) – Racing for the last time in the name of James Ortega, the late Thoroughbred horse owner who was one of nine people slain in what has become known as the Santa Claus Massacre in nearby Covina on Christmas Eve, Return of the King scored a dramatic come-from-behind victory in the second race at Santa Anita on Thursday.
“I feel like I just won a $5 million race,” jockey Martin Pedroza said in the winner’s circle. “I’ve known the family for a long time. I wanted so much to win this race. It gave me chills.”
STABLE NOTES, THURSDAY, JANUARY 8TH, 2009
SADLER SEEKS REPEAT IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL
John Sadler sends out two for the money Saturday in quest of his second consecutive victory in the San Pasqual Handicap when he saddles Mostacolli Mort and Noble Court in the Grade II event for older horses at 1 1/16 miles.
Sadler, who won 28 races at Santa Anita last season to finish second behind Mike Mitchell (33), won the 2008 San Pasqual with Gary and Cecil Barber’s Zappa.
BAFFERT TRIO HEADS SUNDAY’S SANTA YSABEL LINEUP OF NINE
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2009) – Toro Bonito and a pair of Bob Baffert-trained stablemates will be among nine 3-year-old fillies seeking their first graded stakes victory Sunday in Santa Anita’s 42nd running of the Grade III, $100,000 Santa Ysabel Stakes at 1 1/16 miles.
A homebred daughter of El Corredor owned by Hal and Patti Earnhardt III, Toro Bonito comes into the race off a third-place finish behind Laragh in Hollywood Park’s Grade I Hollywood Starlet on Dec. 13, an effort that is likely to earn her favoritism on Sunday.