Thursday, March 01 2012
Little Mike Will Have Big Following for Canadian Turf
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – The most fashionably bred, most well-connected horses with the most impeccable conformation parade through Gulfstream Park on a daily basis, but it’s a diminutive gelding with relatively obscure parentage that has become the racing fans’ most unlikely and beloved hero.
Little Mike, who will be seeking his sixth victory in seven starts over the past 14 months at Gulfstream Park in Saturday’s $150,000 Canadian Turf (G3), is also the pride and joy of Carlo and Priscilla Vaccarezza.
Inspired & Indulgence Meet in Ladies Turf Sprint
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Peter Blum Thoroughbreds’ 5-year-old mare Inspired is very fast and will be the one to catch in Sunday’s $60,000 Ladies Turf Sprint at Gulfstream Park while Silverton Hill Farm LLC’s 5-year-old mare Indulgence is a confirmed come-from-behind sprinter that can be expected to be closing fast in the stretch of the five-furlong dash.
Inspired shipped out of town for a wire-to-wire score in the $75,000 Pan Zareta Stakes going five furlongs over the Fair Grounds course last out on Jan. 21 for trainer Allen Iwinski. Jockey John Velazquez was aboard for that victory and will have the mount again Sunday.
Yara, Coalport, Dash Dot Dash
Peras International’s 3-year-old Florida-bred filly Yara posted a 64-to-1 upset winning the $350,000 Davona Dale Stakes (G2) by a neck over heavy favorite Grace Hall on Feb. 25 at Gulfstream Park, and will now be pointed to her start next in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) to be run at 1 1/8 miles on Florida Derby Day, Sat., Mar. 31.
“She came out of the race very well,” said trainer Jose Garoffalo Thursday morning from his Calder headquarters. “She’s fit and now we just have to keep her happy between now and then. One of the reasons we decided to stay here for this race is that she can earn a $100,000 bonus as a Florida-bred if she wins the race. We hope she does well enough in the Gulfstream Oaks to go on to the Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs.”
Gulfstream Raises Purses 15 Percent; $250,000 a Week
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Gulfstream Park announced today it will raise purses 15 percent through the remainder of its meet due to increases in on-track and off-track handle as well as attendance.
“We have seen increases in our business due to the support of our horsemen, and the industry has benefited from our December opening,” said Gulfstream Park President and General Manager Timothy Ritvo. “The quality of our races, and the quantity of starters per race, has been welcomed by our fans both locally and globally. We thank them for their support. It has always been our desire to increase purses and give back to the horsemen who have supported our program with the finest show on turf.
Wednesday, February 29 2012
GULFSTREAM TODAY 2-29-2012
Two-time defending jockey titlist Paco Lopez rode the winners of the first three races on Wednesday’s card.
The 26-year-old native of Terra Blanca, Veracruz, Mexico swept the daily double with Olympist ($3) in the first and Sheik Polis ($10.20) in the second. He also got home first aboard Devilish Silver ($5.40 in the third before finishing second aboard 22-1 longshot Romantic Juliet in the sixth race.
Florida Derby Hero Dialed In Returns in Saturday Allowance
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Robert LaPenta’s Dialed In, winner of the Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park last year, is entered to make his 2012 season debut in a one-mile allowance test Saturday. It will be his first start since finishing fourth behind Shackleford and Animal Kingdom in the Preakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico on May 21.
“We started his season off in a one-turn mile last year in the Holy Bull and he won,” said trainer Nick Zito Wednesday afternoon. “He’ll be going two turns after this one. There are a lot of tough horses in this race. We’re just looking for a good effort to get him going again.”
Little Mike & Data Link Clash in Canadian Turf Saturday
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Priscilla Vaccarezza’s 5-year-old gelding Little Mike and Stuart Janney III’s 4-year-old Data Link are a combined eight wins from nine starts over the Gulfstream Park turf course over the last two seasons. They are set to face off for the first time as the likely choices in Saturday’s $150,000 Canadian Turf Stakes (G3) going one mile in a field of eight older horses.
Regular jockey Joe Bravo will be aboard Little Mike for trainer Dale Romans as he bids for a fifth consecutive victory going back to last year. The Florida homebred by Spanish Steps swept the Ft. Lauderdale Stakes (G3), Canadian Turf and Appleton Stakes (G3) here last year, punctuated by a close-up sixth in the Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (G1) in his lone loss over the course.
Gulfstream Park News & Notes February 29, 2012
Next Stop on Road to the Derby Pending for ‘News’
Encouraged by News Pending’s second-place finish behind Union Rags in last Sunday’s $400,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth (G2), trainer Dale Romans will go shopping for a prep that will offer the son of Harlan’s Holiday the best chance of getting into the 20-horse field for the Kentucky Derby (G1).
“We’ll just nominate him to everything out there. The next race will be important to pick up a big chunk of change,” said Romans, whose 3-year-old colt, who pressed the pace set by favored Discreet Dancer and finished second, four lengths behind Union Rags and 2 ¼ lengths clear of the pacesetter. “It’s early. We’ll see what things look like, but the Florida Derby is definitely possible.”
Statement from Trainer Todd Pletcher and Owner Jack Wolf on Prognosis for Early KY Derby Favorite
Boynton Beach, FL February 29, 2012 - X-rays taken this morning have revealed that Algorithms, undefeated winner of the Holy Bull S. (III), has a fractured splint in his right front leg that will have to be surgically removed. He is going to ship to Ocala tomorrow, where Dr. John Madison of Ocala Equine Hospital will perform the operation. "We are hoping that he only requires a minimal amount of time off," said his trainer, Todd Pletcher, "but he is definitely not going to make the Triple Crown." Jack Wolf of Starlight Racing, the owner of Algorithms, said, "It is very disappointing that he will have to miss the spring classics, but we look forward to having him back in late summer or early fall. This really is the best long term option for Algorithms."
Monday, February 27 2012
Union Rags Scores Dominating Victory in Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Union Rags’ reputation may have lost some luster when he suffered his first defeat in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) last fall, but the 3-year-old colt’s star couldn’t be shining more brightly in the aftermath of his breathtaking triumph in Sunday’s $400,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream Park.
Making his first start since losing to Hansen by a head in the Juvenile at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5, Union Rags produced the most dominating Kentucky Derby (G1) prep of the season thus far while easily dominating a field that was reduced to seven by the early-morning scratch of morning-line favorite Algorithms.
Rainbow 6 Hit for $78,389.98
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Gulfstream Park’s popular 10-cent Rainbow 6 was hit Sunday on Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth day for $78,389.98.
The winning ticket was played at nearby Pompano Park.
Simmard Holds Off Newsdad in Mac Diarmida
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Haras Santa Maria de Araras’ 7-year-old Kentucky homebred Simmard kept digging in after taking the lead in the final turn of Sunday’s $150,000 Mac Diarmida Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park, and held on for a game nose victory over James Karp’s 2-to-1 favorite Newsdad in the 1 3/8 miles turf test.
Leading Gulfstream jockey Javier Castellano was aboard Simmard, taking a stalking position close-up in third in the field of 10 older horses as 25 to-1 longshot Mambo Meister set a moderate pace through three-quarters in 1:13 3/5. Simmard took command into the final turn and was joined by Newsdad for the long duel to the finish as they hit the wire in 2:11:71 over the ‘firm’ course.