Sunday, February 20 2011

Catalan Finds Softer Spot in Monday Allowance Feature

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Flying Zee Stable and Kona Stable’s 4-year-old gelding Catalan was no match making his first start in five months against Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) winner Big Drama in the $100,000 Mr. Prospector Stakes (G3) on Jan. 15 at Gulfstream Park, particularly after a poor start. The gelding finds a more comfortable spot in Monday’s holiday allowance feature with apprentice Ryan Curatolo aboard for trainer Patrick Biancone.

Catalan is a roan/gray by Holy Bull and was making his first appearance in the Mr. Prospector since a good third-place finish in the Select Stakes at Monmouth Park on Aug. 8 and tired to last of six as Big Drama set a track record of 1:08 flat for six furlongs just days before being acclaimed Eclipse champion sprinter of 2010. Catalan broke his maiden at Delaware Park prior to the Select when making his fourth career start.

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Coa, Lopez Update

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Jockey Eibar Coa remained in good spirits and showed slight improvement overnight after undergoing surgery Saturday on his C4 vertebrae, which was broken in a spill following the finish of Friday’s sixth race.

According to family spokesperson Tito Fuentes, Coa’s agent, the jockey came out of Saturday’s surgery well and has some movement in his arms and shoulders. Coa has feeling throughout his body but no movement in his legs.

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Prince Will I Am Drives To Mac Diarmida Victory

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Prince Will I Am, trained by Michelle Nihei and ridden by John Velazquez, drove to the lead above the sixteenth pole to win Saturday’s $100,000 Mac Diarmida (G2) by three-quarters of a length at Gulfstream Park.

The 4-year-old chestnut son of Victory Gallop has now won three graded stakes in his last four starts, including the McKnight (G3) and Jamaica (G1). His only loss was a second-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Marathon (G3). Ray’s Attorney was second and Musketier was third.

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Awesome Maria Best In $100,000 Sabin

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – E. Paul Robsham Stable’s Awesome Maria, trained by Todd Pletcher and ridden by John Velazquez, drove away from Amen Hallelujah down the stretch Saturday at Gulfstream Park to win the $100,000 Sabin (G3) by 4 ¾ lengths.

A 4-year-old filly by Maria’s Mon, Awesome Maria covered the mile in 1:36.38. It was another 5 ¼ lengths behind Amen Hallelujah to Catch a Thief in third.

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Friday, February 18 2011

Lopez Released, Coa Remains Hospitalized

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Jockeys Paco Lopez and Eibar Coa were taken to a nearby Hollywood Memorial Hospital Friday after being unseated in a spill following the finish of the sixth race at Gulfstream Park.

Lopez was treated for an elbow chip and released Friday evening, while Coa remained hospitalized for further evaluation and treatment.

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50-Cent Pick 5 Solved After Jackpot Swells

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – The 50-cent Pick 5 jackpot pool swelled to $971,971 Friday at Gulfstream Park, where the innovative wager was solved and rewarded winning ticket-holders with a $7,104.20 payoff.

The Pick 5, which requires bettors to select the winners of the final five races on the card, went unsolved for the previous two racing programs, resulting in a $172,735 carryover to Friday’s card.

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Coa, Lopez Taken to Hospital After Spill

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Jockeys Eibar Coa and Paco Lopez were taken to a nearby hospital Friday after being unseated in a spill following the finish of the sixth race at Gulfstream Park.

Precious Lady, who finished second behind winner Omi’s Vindication, fell to the turf course, unseating Lopez just yards past the finish line. Unable to avoid the fallen horse, Lady Chesterfield subsequently fell, unseating Coa.

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Gulfstream News & Notes - February 18, 2011

Biancone Unveils Chilean Superstar In The Very One

Belle Watling has won 13 of 16 races, including her last 10 races against the very best horses in her native Chile, so there really wouldn’t seem to be a whole lot of room for improvement. Her connections just have to figure out ways to help the 5-year-old mare to settle into her new surroundings.

Carl Lizza of the Bell Watling Syndicate that purchased the Chilean champion and imported her to the U.S. in December, as well as trainer Patrick Biancone, have done everything possible to keep her happy.

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Thursday, February 17 2011

Hills Hopes To ‘Catch’ a Star, Presious Passion on Hiatus

Tim Hills has been a mainstay at Gulfstream Park for more than 20 years, but the New Hampshire native clearly remembers his first winter training horses in tropical surroundings of South Florida.

“I had a good grass horse named Sans the Shadow, so in 1988, I got four stalls down here. I was at the end of Billy Mott’s shedrow and on the backside was Scotty Schulhofer,” Hills recalled. “So what a culture shock for a guy used to toiling through the winters at Suffolk Downs.”

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Stronach Creates Gulfstream Retirement Program

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Frank Stronach, an industry leader in the retraining and rehabilitation of thoroughbred race horses and an advocate and supporter of several retirement programs, announced today the formation of the Gulfstream Park Thoroughbred After-Care Program.

Stronach, Chairman and CEO of MI Developments Inc., parent company of Gulfstream Park, said the After-Care Program will help match horses with loving owners who will make a lifelong commitment to their health, safety and well being.

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Al Khali & Prince Will I Am in Wide-Open Mac Diarmida Saturday

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Brous Stable and Wachtel Stable’s 5-year-old Al Khali and Casa Farms’ 4-year-old Prince Will I Am competed in different Breeders’ Cup races at Churchill Downs over the Nov. 5-6 weekend, and will meet for the first time in a wide-open field of 13 older horses in the $150,000 Mac Diarmida Stakes (G2) Saturday going 1 3/8 miles on turf at Gulfstream Park.

Jockey Kent Desormeaux rides Al Khali for trainer Bill Mott as he makes his first start since finishing a disappointing seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1). The son of Medaglia d’Oro earned his chance in that race winning the 11-furlong Bowling Green Handicap (G2) at Belmont Park in September and finishing a close-up fourth in the 12-furlong Canadian International (G1) at Woodbine in October, beaten less than a length for it all.

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Gulfstream News & Notes: ‘Mucho’ and ‘Rogue’ Hit the Road

‘Mucho’ and ‘Rogue’ Hit the Road

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Kathy Ritvo-trained Mucho Macho Man and Ken McPeek-trained Rogue Romance boarded a Sallee van on the Gulfstream Park backstretch Wednesday morning for the first leg of a journey that included a flight from West Palm Beach to New Orleans.

The highly regarded 3-year-olds will compete in Saturday’s Risen Stakes (G2) at Fair Grounds.

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