Wednesday, November 12 2008
DILEMMA BEATS TALENTED CREW UNDER GOMEZ IN HOLLYPARK FEATURE
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 12, 2008) — Glen Hill Farm’s Dilemma overhauled pacesetter Lang Field early in the stretch and held off hard-charging Rush Rush in the final sixteenth to win Wednesday’s $59,800 allowance feature by three-quarters of a length under jockey Garrett Gomez at Hollywood Park.
Dilemma, fifth in the Oak Tree Mile in his previous start, covered 1 1/8 miles on the Lakeside turf Course in 1:48.92 to win for the third time in nine 2008 starts. A slight betting favorite, he paid $7.20, $3.60 and $2.80. Rush Rush, ridden by Victor Espinoza, returned $5.40 and $3.60. The show payoff on Obrigado was $3.40. Lang Field, winner of the 2007 Citation Handicap, faded to fourth in the field of seven older horses.
HP Stable Notes: Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2008
IRISH TRAINER ARRIVES FOR MOCCASIN
Ger Lyons, who has sent out Pasar Silbano to four victories in six starts in Ireland this year, stood near her stall in Barn 51 South Wednesday morning at Hollywood Park in preparation for her United States debut in the $100,000-added Moccasin Stakes for 2-year-old fillies at seven furlongs Sunday.
“She’s part of the family,” said Lyons’ wife, Lynne, as the couple readied to bid the filly adieu after the Moccasin. Pasar Silbano was purchased privately by Kentucky-based Three Chimneys Racing last month and will probably be transferred to locally-based Jim Cassidy after the Moccasin.
Monday, November 10 2008
HIGH HEEL SNEAKERS CRUISES UNDER ESPINOZA IN HERMOSA BEACH
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 9, 2008) — Favorite High Heel Sneakers, given a ground-saving trip by jockey Victor Espinoza, moved off the rail with three furlongs to run and easily out-ran Brushed Gold through the stretch en route to a 2 ¾-length victory in Sunday’s $65,000 Hermosa Beach Handicap at Hollywood Park.
The 5-year-old bay mare — meeting easier competition after a seventh-place finish in the Grade I Yellow Ribbon at Santa Anita Park, covered 1 ½ miles on the Lakeside Turf Course in 2:28.58 while paying $5.60, $3.40 and $2.60. Brushed Gold, ridden by Garrett Gomez, paid $5.40 and $3.40, while the show payoff on second-choice Caprice with Rafael Bejarano up was $2.60.
HP Notes: Sunday, Nov. 9, 2008
McLAUGHLIN TO RUN PAIR IN TURF FESTIVAL
It will be something old and something new for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin during the Turf Festival Nov. 28-30 at Hollywood Park.
McLaughlin said from New York Sunday veteran Shakis would conclude his racing career in the $400,000 Citation Handicap on Nov. 28, the same afternoon that budding star Hayaba seeks her first stakes victory in the $100,000-added Miesque for 2-year-old fillies.
Shakis, an Irish-bred 8-year-old horse, has won seven of 35 starts and earned $860,532 for owner-breeder Shadwell Farm. A two-time winner of the Grade II Bernard Baruch Handicap at Saratoga, Shakis was a fast-closing second in the Grade I Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland and a troubled 11th in the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Santa Anita in his last two starts.
Sunday, November 09 2008
CHOCOLATE CANDY RALLIES UNDER GOMEZ TO WIN REAL QUIET STAKES
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 8, 2008) — Chocolate Candy, ridden perfectly by Garrett Gomez, charged to the lead inside the sixteenth pole and went on to a one-length victory in Saturday’s $100,000 Real Quiet Stakes at Hollywood Park.
The bay son of Candy Ride covered 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track in a stakes record time of 1:42.25 while paying $15.60, $6.80 and $3.80 as the fourth choice in the field of seven 2-year-olds. The upset helped set up a Pick Six carryover of $112,486 when racing resumes Sunday.
Saturday, November 08 2008
GERMAN-BRED CAPRICE SEEKS FIRST U.S. WIN IN HERMOSA BEACH
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 7, 2008) — German-bred Caprice will carry high weight of 118 pounds as she aims for her first North American victory in a contentious field of nine fillies and mares in the $65,000 Hermosa Beach Handicap at Hollywood Park.
Caprice, based in the East with trainer H. Graham Motion, won at the Hermosa Beach distance of 1½ miles in France last September. The 5-year-old mare, who came to the U.S. for her 2008 campaign, has failed to win but has not missed the board in four starts. Most recently, she finished third in the Dowager Stakes at Keeneland. Prior to that, she was only beaten a neck while finishing second in the Claire Marine at Arlington Park. Both races were on the turf at 1½ miles.
HP Notes: Friday, Nov. 7, 2008
MUNY ON TARGET FOR $500,000 HOLLYWOOD DERBY
Muny, who posted his third straight victory with a front-running effort in the Oak Tree Derby on the Breeders‘ Cup undercard at Santa Anita, is slated to make his next start in the $500,000 Hollywood Derby on Nov. 30, trainer Mike Puype said Friday at Hollywood Park. The Grade I race is at 1 ¼ miles on turf.
“He’s three-for-four,” said Puype of the 3-year-old gelding. “I bet not many horses have won the Oak Tree Derby in only their fourth start. It’s not easy to take on those seasoned horses and carry them wire-to-wire.
Friday, November 07 2008
NEW ZEALAND-BRED MAJESTIC DIAMOND SETS UP $232,349 CARRYOVER
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 6, 2008) — New Zealand-bred Majestic Diamond, the longest shot in the field at odds of 32-1, rallied from sixth at the top of the stretch under jockey Julien Couton to capture Thursday’s $42,000 feature at Hollywood Park, setting up a two-day Pick Six carryover of $232,349.
The 5-year-old, making his U.S. debut, covered six furlongs on the Lakeside Turf Course in 1:08.53 while rewarding backers with payoffs of $69, $19.40 and $10.40. Joe Bravo, a half-length back of the winner with Mike Smith up, paid $6.60 and $3.60. Favorite Banner Lodge, ridden by Garrett Gomez, finished third and returned $3.80.
Thursday, November 06 2008
ESCALON WILL TRY TO REBOUND IN REAL QUIET STAKES
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 6, 2008) — Escalon, third as the favorite in the California Cup Juvenile, will try to make amends in the fourth running of the $100,000 Real Quiet Stakes on Saturday at Hollywood Park.
Escalon, who broke his maiden while making his career bow on Aug. 1 at Del Mar, will be starting for the fourth time in the 1 1/16-mile Real Quiet. He finished sixth in the Del Mar Futurity two starts back.
HP Notes: Thursday, Nov. 6, 2008
WINCHESTER WORKS FOR HOLLYWOOD DERBY
Irish-based Winchester, a Grade I stakes winner for trainer Dermot Weld, worked an easy five furlongs on turf Thursday at Hollywood Park in preparation for the $500,000 Hollywood Derby on Nov. 30.
“We just wanted him to get a feel of it,” said assistant Jeff Byrne after the drill under Thomas Daly, another assistant. The 3-year-old colt was shipped here Friday from Santa Anita after finishing seventh in the Breeders’ Cup’ Turf on Oct. 25.
Winchester worked a couple of lengths off Towzee from the Paddy Gallagher barn where both are stabled. “We don’t go fast; it’s a different system,” explained Byrne, satisfied with the drill. Winchester was clocked in 1:04.80 breezing.
“It’s been a lucky track for us,” said Byrne, an assistant to Weld for 20 years. “I’ve been here with Dress to Thrill when she won The Matriarch (2002) and a couple of American Oaks fillies.”
A Virginia-bred son of Theatrical owned and bred by Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Firestone, Winchester began his career in Ireland, breaking his maiden in April and finishing seventh in the Irish Derby in June. He shipped to the United States to win the Grade I Secretariat Stakes at Arlington Park in August by 7 ½ lengths.
“I think the mile and a quarter should suit him better than the mile and a half,” said Byrne of the distance of the Grade I Hollywood Derby in comparison to the Breeders’ Cup. “He was in a tough spot against older horses in the Breeders’ Cup, but I couldn’t be happier with him now.
“He’s a pretty straightforward horse, sound, no problems, with a really good constitution and a great appetite,“ continued Byrne. “Not sending him home and keeping him here should help.”
Winchester must be supplemented to the race for $10,000.
PRECIOUS KITTEN SEEKS MATRIARCH REPEAT
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel, making his first appearance of the meet at Hollywood Park Thursday, said defending champion Precious Kitten and at least one other horse would start in the $500,000 Matriarch on Nov. 30. The Grade I test is for fillies and mares at one mile on turf.
Frankel, spending most of the meet with a larger division at Santa Anita, watched several horses exercise on the track from a division overseen by assistant Sally Lundy.
“Precious Kitten, Visit, maybe Ventura,” said Frankel when asked about candidates for a race he was won a record eight times, including the last four.
Precious Kitten seeks to become only the second horse to win The Matriarch more than once in its 27-year history. Champion Flawlessly won it three straight times from 1991-93.
Precious Kitten comes off a fourth-place finish against males in the Breeders’ Cup Mile. The 5-year-old mare won the Grade I Gamely Stakes here in May. She has recorded eight firsts and nine seconds in 24 starts.
Visit, a Juddmonte Farms homebred from England, joined the Frankel barn after finishing fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf for Sir Michael Stoute.
Ventura, another Juddmonte homebred, finished second by a nose in the CashCall Mile here in July and comes off an impressive win in the seven-furlong Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
Frankel also said Fifteen Love and Midships, a pair of Juddmonte colts from Europe training at Santa Anita, are under consideration for the $500,000 Hollywood Derby the same day. He has won that race three times, one less than leader Charlie Whittingham.
Frankel added that he had not made a decision in the $400,000 Citation Handicap on Nov. 28, a race in which he nominated Mast Track, Out of Control, Proudinsky, Storm Military and Tybalt. The Grade I test is at 1 1/16 miles on turf.
The three races headline the six-race Turf Festival Nov. 28-30. Frankel is the runaway leader in Turf Festival victories with 17.
VICTORY PETE WORKS MILE FOR COMEBACK
Victory Pete, a third-place finisher in two Santa Anita 3-year-old stakes before going to the sidelines, neared a return to the races after working a mile on turf in 1:43.20 under exercise rider Paddy Dalton.
“He’s close to a comeback; I’m looking at the next book,” said trainer Alexis Barba. “He finished third in the California Derby and was third in the Sham Stakes behind Colonel John and El Gato Malo. I sent him to Oaklawn for the Arkansas Derby but he hurt his foot a day before the race and was scratched.”
Stakes-winning El Gato Malo, also on the comeback trail, worked four furlongs on Cushion Track in :48.60 for trainer Craig Dollase.
ARTISTE ROYAL WORKS FOR TURF CUP
Artiste Royal, unraced since winning the Grade I Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap here in June, worked seven furlongs in 1:30 on turf Thursday in company with Obrigado, also on the comeback, for trainer Neil Drysdale.
“He has come back from a minor setback after the Whittingham,” said Drysdale of the 7-year-old veteran he is pointing to the $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup on Dec. 6.
Drysdale said Obrigado and Cedar Mountain, who worked four furlongs on grass in :51, are also under consideration for the Turf Cup, a Grade I test at 1 ½ miles on turf. Cedar Mountain finished sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Marathon.
FINISH LINES — Owner Jerry Moss was a visitor to the John Shirreffs stable Thursday and watched Neko Bay exercise on the main track. Moss said he still had not come back to earth from unbeaten Zenyatta’s victory in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies Classic on Oct. 24 at Santa Anita. “We’re still up there somewhere,” said Moss with a smile…Nobutaka Tada, racing manager for Casino Drive, said the 3-year-old colt and stablemate Champagne Squall would be flown back to Japan Sunday. Casino Drive, unbeaten in three previous starts, faded to last in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Champagne Squall was unplaced in a maiden race on turf here Wednesday…Friday racing shifts under the lights this week with a 7:05 p.m. post. Night racing will continue the following two Fridays, Nov. 14 and 21, before returning to matinees the final four Fridays, Nov. 28 and Dec. 5, 12 and 19.
A LIL DUMAANI STRIKES FOR REN-MAR IN HOLLYWOOD FEATURE
INGLEWOOD, Calif. (Nov. 5, 2008) — A Lil Dumaani split horses in mid-stretch under jockey Michael Baze and went on to hold off Swift Demand by one-half length to win Wednesday’s $39,000 optional claiming feature at Hollywood Park.
A Lil Dumaani covered six furlongs on Cushion Track in 1:08.03 while winning for the third time in seven starts. The gray/roan 3-year-old paid $8.40, $4.40 and $3.20. Swift Demand returned $4 and $3, while the show payoff on 2-1 favorite Spot the Diplomat was $2.60.
Wednesday, November 05 2008
Hollywood Park Notes: Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008
BOB BLACK JACK TO RETURN IN VERNON O. UNDERWOOD
Bob Black Jack, North American record-setter at six furlongs, is scheduled to make his first start since May in the $100,000-added Vernon O. Underwood Stakes at Hollywood Park Nov. 22, trainer Jim Kasparoff said Wednesday. The Grade III Underwood is at six furlongs on Cushion Track.
Bob Black Jack, a 3-year-old colt, won the Sunshine Millions Sprint at Santa Anita in January in 1:06.53, lowering the continent standard of 1:06.60 set by G Malleah at Turf Paradise in 1995.