Sunday, May 31 2009


LORD JUSTICE NEVER HEADED IN SPEND A BUCK STAKES


OCEANPORT, N.J. * Stronach Stables’ Lord Justice led all the way to win the $70,000 Spend a Buck Stakes, and Edith R. Dixon’s Smart Enough was a facile winner in the $60,000 Wolf Hill Stakes on turf before a crowd of 8,365 at Monmouth Park on Saturday.

In the Spend a Buck Stakes for 3-year-olds, Lord Justice used his good speed to secure an early lead, and then had enough left to hold off the late charge of Santana Six to score by a half-length. It Happened Again, the 2-1 favorite in the field of eight, was third, three lengths farther back.





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Monmouth Park Barn Notes for Saturday, May 30, 2009


TALKIN ABOUT LOVE KICKS MAKES ’09 DEBUT IN OPEN MIND

Kevin Sleeter is as eager as anyone to see graded stakes winner Talkin About Love make her 5-year-old debut, but as the breeder-owner-trainer of the mare, he wants to make sure it’s the right spot. Sunday’s $60,000 Open Mind Handicap at six furlongs for New Jersey-breds looks like the right spot.

“I had her entered in the Red Cross Stakes (an open sprint on May 10),” Sleeter said, “but that race came up very tough. Also, that whole weekend, speed was dominating, and no horses were coming from off the pace. She doesn’t have any early speed, and she has to come from far out of it in a sprint.





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Friday, May 29 2009


OUR HONOR RALLIES TO WIN FEATURE IN SLOP AT MONMOUTH


OCEANPORT, N.J. * Bill and Vicki Poston’s Our Honor wore down the front-running favorite through the stretch and was a neck best at the wire in Friday’s $42,000 allowance feature run over a sloppy track at Monmouth Park.

The winner, trained by Jason Servis and ridden by Elvis Trujillo, raced the six furlongs in 1:09 2/5 and paid $10.40 and $4.20 as third choice in a field of four older horses.





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Monmouth Park Barn Notes for Friday, May 29, 2009


BUNKER HILL FITS WELL IN SPEND A BUCK STAKES SATURDAY

When last seen in action, Flying Dutchman Stable’s Bunker Hill acted up in the paddock, threw a fit in the gate, and then trailed the field in the Grade 3 American Turf Stakes at Churchill Downs, obviously not enjoying anything about the experience.

Trainer Derek Ryan thinks all that will work in his favor when the colt goes in Saturday’s $70,000 Spend a Buck Stakes for 3-year-olds.





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Monmouth Park Barn Notes for Thursday, May 28, 2009


‘NICK’ IS ASPIRING TO BERTH IN HASKELL INVITATIONAL

Trainer Tim J. Kelly has big plans for Daniel J. Ljoka’s Aspiring Nick, starting with Saturday’s $70,000 Spend a Buck Stakes for 3-year-olds, and if they pan out, fans can expect to see the colt reach the big time in August.

“The goal is the Haskell,” Kelly said, referring to the centerpiece of Monmouth’s meeting, the $1 million Haskell Invitational (G1) on August 2. “He has to do well in this race, and then the Long Branch (July 11) to get invited.”





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Tuesday, May 26 2009


SHIPPER THORN SONG WINS THREE-HORSE DRIVE TO WIRE IN SHOEMAKER


INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 25, 2009) — A late decision to ship west paid big as supplemental entry Thorn Song set the pace and held off Hyperbaric and Storm Military in a furious stretch drive to win Monday’s $314,500 Shoemaker Mile by a head under Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith at Hollywood Park.

Thorn Song, shipped here by Zayat Stables from Kentucky on Friday, covered one mile on the Lakeside Turf Course in 1:33.33 to snap a four-race winless streak in the 66th running of the Grade I Shoemaker.





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MAREN’S MEADOW GAME WINNER OF MONMOUTH BEACH STAKES


Oceanport, N.J. * Maren’s Meadow returned to Monmouth Park to win the $70,000 Monmouth Beach Stakes in front-running fashion and Sleepless Knight made a big move around the turn to capture the $65,000 Lamplighter Stakes before a crowd of 11,565 at Monmouth Park on Memorial Day.

Ridden by Justin Shepherd, Maren’s Meadow returned $7.40, $4.60, and $3.20 and topped a $35.40 exacta. All Night Labor, who tried the winner in the lane, settled for second, a head behind, and paid $4.80 and $2.80. You Asked rallied for third, a length and half back, and returned $5 to show.





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FRIESAN FIRE POINTING FOR HASKELL INVITATIONAL ON AUGUST 2


Trainer Larry Jones, who has been winning Monmouth stakes on a regular basis the past two years, said Sunday that the $1 million Haskell Invitational (G1) on Aug. 2 is the main objective this summer for Vinery Stables and Fox Hill Farm’s Friesan Fire.

“That’s the number one target, the Haskell,” said Jones, who saddled Hard Spun to a runner-up performance in the 2007 Haskell. “You’ll be seeing a lot of us at Monmouth this summer.”





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Monday, May 25 2009


CHARLIE’S MOMENT THE BOSS IN BARRERA STAKES


INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 24, 2009) — Charlie’s Moment seized the lead from expected pacesetter Backbackbackgone shortly after the start and went on to score an authoritative two-length victory under jockey Alex Solis in Sunday’s $100,000 Lazaro S. Barrera Stakes at Hollywood Park.

The Walther Solis-trained gelding nonchalantly turned back a challenge from previously unbeaten Canonize nearing the eighth pole and easily held late-running Bet On Victor at bay in the final sixteenth.





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SOLAR FLARE CAPTURES FRISK ME NOW STAKES AT MONMOUTH


OCEANPORT, N.J. * Fox Hill Farms’ Solar Flare romped to a nine-length victory in the $70,000 Frisk Me Now Stakes, and Donald and Mary Zuckerman’s Platinum Girl pulled off a 20-1 upset in the Little Silver Stakes on turf before a crowd of 11,452 at Monmouth Park on Sunday.

In the Frisk Me Now Stakes, Solar Flare went off the longest price in the field of four and had the biggest stretch kick as he stopped the timer in 1:41 flat for a mile and a sixteenth on the fast main track.





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Monmouth Park Barn Notes for Sunday, May 24, 2009


DOES MAREN LOVE MONMOUTH? TUNE IN MONDAY TO FIND OUT

Monmouth’s distaff stakes always come up competitive affairs, and Monday’s $70,000 Monmouth Beach Stakes fits the traditional pattern. A field of eight fillies and mares was named for the one mile and 70-yard event, and it’s guaranteed the winner will have to do some running.

Trainer Larry Jones is bringing back Maren’s Meadow, a 4-year-old daughter of Meadowlake who wowed the crowd here last August with a brilliant front-running victory in the Grade 3 Monmouth Oaks.





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Saturday, May 23 2009


GET SERIOUS SETS TURF RECORD IN WINNING ELKWOOD STAKES


OCEANPORT, N.J. * Get Serious set a new turf course record in winning the $70,000 Elkwood Stakes, and Joey P. turned in one of the most impressive victories of his career in the $60,000 John J. Reilly Handicap as a crowd of 10,350 got their money’s worth on the Saturday program at Monmouth Park.

Get Serious, trained by the team of John Forbes and Pat McBurney and ridden by Pablo Fragoso, blazed to the lead rounding the turn and roared off through the stretch to stop the teletimer in 1:32.78 for one mile on the firm turf course. He shattered the course record of 1:33.36 that was set in the 2006 Red Bank Stakes by Miesque’s Approval, who went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Mile that year.





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