Friday, March 09 2012

Fan-Favorite Tackleberry Set for Return in Gulfstream ‘Cap Saturday

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Racing in an era marked by equine specialization and carefully spaced schedules, Tackleberry is a throwback to the days when horses were far more adaptive to a wide variety of challenges.

Recognizing his horse’s rare versatility, owner/trainer Luis Olivares has rejected today’s conventional training wisdom to establish Tackleberry as a fan favorite at Gulfstream Park, where he will make his 2012 debut on Saturday.

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Gulfstream Today: 3.8.12

Gary and Mary West’s 4-year-old Kentucky homebred colt Self Control ran very well to finish second in two previous starts at the Gulfstream meet in one-turn mile allowance races, but put it all together Thursday stretching out to two turns to score by 2 ¼ lengths over Zayat Stable’s 6-year-old Eye On Jacob.

Jockey Javier Castellano was aboard Self Control for trainer Chad Brown and rated comfortably in fifth as they turned up the backstretch of the 1 1/8 miles ‘a other than’ allowance test. The son of Lemon Drop kid had plenty of run when asked into the far turn and slipped through easily along the rail to post his second victory in seven starts with his best apparently ahead of him in two-turn races.

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Dayatthespa Bids for Second Turf Stakes Prize Sunday

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Trainer Chad Brown had a great season last year with Grade 1-winning filly and mare turf stars Stacelita and Zagora. Brown now appears to have an emerging turf stakes filly prospect in Jerry Frankel and partners’ impressive Sweetest Chant winner Dayatthespa, the likely favorite in Sunday’s $150,000 Herecomesthebride Stakes going 1 1/8 miles on the turf.

Leading jockey Javier Castellano was aboard Dayatthespa to win the Sweetest Chant by 1 ¾ lengths and will be back aboard. The New York-bred daughter of City Zip was making her first start in the Sweetest Chant since finishing ninth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G2) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 4, although beaten only 5 ½ lengths for it all.

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Sheppard Looks for a Change of ‘Luck’ in Swale

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Augustin Stables’ Ever So Lucky has had a run of bad luck in 2012, but his connections are hoping that a new path via the $150,000 Swale Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park on Saturday will lead the son of Indian Charlie to Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May.

Earlier this year, Ever So Lucky was being pointed to the seven furlong Hutcheson Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream but a slow breeze on an off track had trainer Jonathan Sheppard thinking the bay colt may not be ready for the race. Consequently, rain in South Florida that week led to a muddy track for the Hutcheson and Ever So Lucky was scratched from the race.

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Dullahan Bids to Jump on Derby Trail in Palm Beach Sunday

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Donegal Racing’s Dullahan, fourth behind Hansen and Union Rags last out in the Breeders Cup Juvenile (G1) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5, will get a chance to join those star 3-year-olds on the Kentucky Derby (G1) trail when he makes his season debut in a field of six drawn for Sunday’s $150,000 Palm Beach Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park.

Jockey Kent Desormeaux will be back aboard Dullahan for trainer Dale Romans in the 1 1/8 miles turf test. Desormeaux was on Dullahan when he won the Dixiana Breeders’ Futurity (G1) on the polytrack at Keeneland and again in the Breeders’ Cup, when he rallied from last of 13 to finish fourth, six lengths behind Hansen.

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Thursday, March 08 2012

Gulfstream Park News & Notes March 8, 2012

Trinniberg Set for Season Debut in Swale

Shivananda Parbhoo’s Trinniberg was an accomplished 2-year-old in New York stakes races last season after an impressive career debut victory at Calder in July, and is set to resume his career in Saturday’s $150,000 Swale Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park in his first start since a disappointing seventh-place finish in the $500,000 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Sprint at Churchill Downs on Nov. 4.

“That wasn’t Trinniberg that day,” said Shivinanda Parbhoo, who manages his family’s horses with his father Bisnath Parboo as the trainer. “He didn’t like the track at Churchill. I thought we might be in trouble after he worked three furlongs from the gate there the week before (37 2/5).

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Wednesday, March 07 2012

Gulfstream Today: 3.7.12

Martini Madness ($15.40) took to the Gulfstream Park turf course with a front-running victory in the $62,750 ninth-race feature. The 3-year-old gelding, who finished third on the main track at Tampa Bay Downs last time out, scored his first grass victory by 1 ¾ lengths under Eduardo Nunez.

The Florida-bred son of Sabre d’Argent broke alertly and was never seriously challenged thereafter while posting fractions of :22.40 and :44.54 on his way to a final clocking of :56.09 for five furlongs. Richmond County finished second, a head in front of favored Faretti, who trailed the field early after a slow start.

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Ever So Lucky Likely Choice in Swale

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Augustin Stable’s Ever So Lucky and Lantern Hill Farm’s Motor City were last seen under colors running second and first in graded stakes last fall at Churchill Downs, and the two will meet as the likely favorites in a field of 10 3-year-olds drawn for Saturday’s $150,000 Swale Stakes (G2) at seven furlongs.

Jockey Joe Bravo gets the call on Ever So Lucky for trainer Jonathan Sheppard after they teamed up to finish a game second as the favorite behind Gemologist in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (G2) going 1 1/16 miles at Churchill on Nov. 26. The son of Indian Charlie developed an immediate following after winning his career debut at Churchill on Nov. 11 by 3 ¼ lengths as the 4-to-5 favorite.

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‘Macho Man’ and Jackson Bend Clash in Gulfstream Park Handicap

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Reeves Thoroughbreds and partners’ 4-year-old Mucho Macho Man and Robert LaPenta and Jacks or Better Farm’s 5-year-old Jackson Bend have each won a major stakes race at Gulfstream Park to begin their 2012 seasons, and are the likely favorites in a field of five older horses entered for Saturday’s $300,000 Gulfstream Park Handicap (G2) to be run at one mile.

Jockey Ramon Dominguez flies in to take a return call on Mucho Macho Man for trainer Kathy Ritvo after they teamed up for an impressive 1 ½ lengths victory in the $400,000 Sunshine Millions Classic over Ron the Greek here on Jan. 28, the latter going on to capture the Santa Anita Handicap (G1) last Saturday.

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Jackson Bend: The Little Horse that Could

BOYNTON BEACH, FL – Nick Zito couldn’t have been more impressed with Jackson Bend’s triumph in the Hal’s Hope (G3) at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 14. The Hall of Fame trainer was less impressed with his part in the gritty 5-year-old’s victorious 2012 debut.

“It was dumb on my part to run him. Really, it was dumb. You’re not supposed to go in a race like that. He draws the rail; he carries top weight; and it wasn’t an easy race,” Zito said. “You’re not supposed to do that. It wasn’t very smart, but he made us look smart. He made up for it.”

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Monday, March 05 2012

Inspired Runs off with Ladies Turf Sprint

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Peter Blum Thoroughbreds’ 5-year-old homebred mare Inspired raced up to take the lead not long after the start of Sunday’s $70,000 Ladies Turf Sprint at Gulfstream Park, and was never threatened as she held a safe margin of one length to the finish in the five-furlong grass course dash.

Ridden by John Velazquez for trainer Allen Iwinski, Inspired was briefly outrun from the gate by Honey Chile before getting into rhythm down the backstretch. The chestnut daughter of Unbridled’s Song was posting her fifth victory in 15 career starts after shipping out of town for a similar wire-to-wire score in the Pan Zareta Stakes at Fair Grounds on Jan. 21.

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Soldat Sharp in Return Victory Sunday at Gulfstream

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Harvey Clarke and partners’ 4-year-old Soldat made a very impressive return to competition Sunday at Gulfstream Park as he drew off to win a 1 1/16 miles turf test by three lengths as the 4-to-5 favorite under leading jockey Javier Castellano. It was his first starts since finishing 11th behind Animal Kingdom in the Kentucky Derby (G1) last spring at Churchill Downs.

“It’s nice to have him back,” said trainer Kiaran McLaughlin of Soldat’s victory. “He trained very well. I didn’t give Javier (Castellano) any specific instructions. I didn’t know whether he would end up close to the pace or not, but he rode him perfectly and we’re pleased to have him (Castellano) ride.

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