Saturday, March 07 2009

Kiss With a Twist takes Wintergreen Stakes

FLORENCE, KY . . . March 7, 2009 . . . Kiss With a Twist earned her second Turfway Park stakes trophy Saturday, wearing down the leader in the stretch and taking the $50,000 Wintergreen Stakes by three-quarters of a length. Final time for the mile was 1:37.61.

Jockey Billy Troilo kept Kiss With a Twist behind the moderate pace set by Unspoken Word, who broke from the outside of the five-horse field and had the lead before the first turn. Racing without pressure, Unspoken Word led by two and three lengths down the backstretch, setting the pace at :24.42 and :48.25 through half. She still led at the quarter pole, clocking the distance in 1:12.70, but by then Troilo had moved Kiss With a Twist up to challenge. The two fought side by side, with ‘Kiss’ having a slight lead, until Unspoken Word gave way in mid-stretch. She dropped back to finish third, 1 1/2 lengths behind De Star Xpress, who closed like a fresh horse to nearly catch the winner.

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Friday, March 06 2009

Turfway Park to cut purses, two stakes

FLORENCE, KY . . . March 6, 2009 . . . Association purses paid at Turfway Park will be cut five percent and the 2009 Tejano Run Stakes and Fairway Fun Stakes have been canceled, track president Robert N. Elliston announced today.

The track was unable to fill races for Monday, March 9, when the cut originally was scheduled to become effective. The cut therefore takes effect Wednesday, March 11, and will run through the end of the meet.

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Thursday, March 05 2009

Turfway stakes winners face off in Wintergreen

FLORENCE, KY . . . March 5, 2009 . . . Recent Turfway Park stakes winners Kiss With a Twist and Unspoken Word return to the track Saturday for the 27th running of the Wintergreen Stakes.

Unspoken Word comes in to the Wintergreen off back-to-back wins at Turfway, including the Likely Exchange Stakes a month ago. Both wins came at the Wintergreen’s mile distance, and she won both by setting a sensible pace and drawing off to win by multiple lengths. The 5-year-old mare is trained by the meet’s leading trainer, Mike Maker, and ridden by the meet’s leading jockey, Victor Lebron.

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Autograph sessions with Derby winners rescheduled

FLORENCE, KY . . . March 4, 2009 . . . Turfway Park has rescheduled previously planned autograph sessions with Kentucky Derby-winning jockeys Steve Cauthen, Pat Day, Mike Manganello, Craig Perret, and Chris McCarron.

Manganello, Perret, and McCarron will be at Turfway Park on Thursday, March 12, to meet fans and sign autographs. Day and Cauthen will be on hand Thursday, March 19. The autograph sessions are scheduled from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. both days.

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Sunday, March 01 2009

Proceed Bee takes Battaglia Memorial

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 28, 2009 . . .Proceed Bee earned his second stakes win Saturday at Turfway Park, running down a game Parade Clown in the stretch to take the $100,000 John Battaglia Memorial Stakes by a length and a quarter.

With the scratch of Fitzaslew, pacesetting chores eventually fell to Dynamite Bob and Platinum Van, but as the field rounded the first turn of the 1 1/16-mile race, five of the seven horses were ranged across the track. Parade Clown, who broke from the outside post as the 3-5 favorite, was eager to join the fray and rounded the turn widest of all.

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Friday, February 27 2009

Turfway cancels added Monday card

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 27, 2009 . . . Turfway Park’s live racing card scheduled for Monday, March 2, has been canceled due to lack of entries. The card had been added to the schedule in an effort to make up races lost to six full or partial cancellations, five in January and one in February.

“Hindsight is 20/20,” said Turfway president Robert N. Elliston, “and we missed the mark in terms of the horse population that would be available to fill additional race days. Horses that otherwise would prefer to run in Kentucky, and traditionally did so, are instead racing in jurisdictions where purses are enhanced with revenue from alternative gaming. Kentucky has not been permitted to level the playing field, and we are beginning to feel the effects of the competitive advantage other states have over us, tradition or not.”

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Thursday, February 26 2009

Fresh off WEBN win, Parade Clown back for Battaglia

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 26, 2009 . . . Parade Clown won the second local prep for the Lane’s End Stakes and returns to Turfway Park Saturday to try the third, the $100,000 John Battaglia Memorial Stakes (listed).

Parade Clown was a bit green in the early going of the WEBN Stakes, the second prep, but veteran jockey Billy Troilo persuaded him to settle and wait, a valuable lesson for a three-year-old approaching springtime. Riding for trainer Katherine Ball, Troilo is back aboard for the Battaglia Memorial. Parade Clown has two wins and a second in three races at Turfway, with one of the wins at the Battaglia’s 1 1/16-mile distance.

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Wednesday, February 25 2009

Turfway to host Derby-winning jockeys

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 24, 2009 . . . Five former jockeys with Kentucky Derby wins to their credit will greet fans and sign autographs at Turfway Park across three Monday afternoons in March. The last of the three Mondays kicks off the week leading to the Grade II Lane’s End Stakes, Turfway’s Derby prep race.

Chris McCarron and Mike Manganello will be on hand March 2, Pat Day and Craig Perret will appear March 9, and Steve Cauthen will appear March 16. A commemorative poster featuring the jockeys will be available free of charge, limited to one per person. A total of 600 posters will be printed. The autograph sessions will run from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day, and fans may have the poster and one other item signed on a first come, first served basis.

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Sunday, February 22 2009

Jockey Musarro gets first career win

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 22, 2009 . . . Apprentice jockey Joe Musarro, 17, earned his first career win Sunday when he guided Heavenly Surprise to a 5 1/2-length score in Turfway Park’s seventh race, a claiming event for fillies and mares three years old and up.

Breaking from post six in the field of seven, Heavenly Surprise jumped immediately to the lead, was taken back by Musarro to race in third, and then regained the lead at the top of the turn before easily drawing away in the stretch. The mare finished the 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:07.08 and paid $9.20 as the 7-2 second choice.

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Lane’s End nominations total 112

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 22, 2009 . . . The 38th renewal of the Grade II Lane’s End Stakes at Turfway Park has drawn 112 nominations, announced Racing Secretary Richard S. Leigh. For three-year-olds going 1 1/8 miles, the Lane’s End Stakes is scheduled for Saturday, March 21. The race traditionally is run six weeks before the first Saturday in May as a prep for the Kentucky Derby (G1), and its $500,000 purse virtually guarantees the winner a spot in the Derby field should more than 20 seek to enter.

The winners of both local preps run to date are nominated to the Lane’s End. Loch Dubh, trained by Jeff Talley for Texas Toyco, won the Turfway Prevue sprint in January, and Parade Clown, trained by Katherine Ball for Donamire Farm, was nominated on the strength of his win in the WEBN Stakes. (The third local prep, the John Battaglia Memorial Stakes, will run February 28.)

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Saturday, February 21 2009

Walloon steps up to stakes win in Valdale

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 21, 2009 . . . Walloon stepped up to two turns and earned her first stakes trophy Saturday at Turfway Park, taking the $50,000 Valdale Stakes by 3 1/4 lengths.

Karacuda jumped out quickly to set the pace, followed closely by the 3-2 favorite, Tacky Cat. Breaking from the inside post under jockey Hector Rosario Jr., Walloon went at the leaders briefly before settling back to mid-pack along the rail. Rosario moved her off the rail leaving the final turn and made a four-wide run past the tiring leaders. She’s Due closed from far back to take second. Three-quarters of a length farther back was Satans Quick Chick, who had trailed the field early.

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Jockey Billy Troilo gets career win 2,500

FLORENCE, KY . . . February 21, 2009 . . . Jockey Billy Troilo earned his 2,500th career win Saturday when he guided Sabeeb to a two-length victory in the sixth race at Turfway Park.

The milestone win came one race after Troilo earned win number 2,499 with Queen of Victory. He added win number 2,501 in the eighth race aboard Overdrive.

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