Thursday, December 29 2011

Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes Highlights Turfway Winter/Spring Meet

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 29, 2011 – Turfway Park closes its 2011 Holiday Meet on New Year’s Eve but racing continues uninterrupted as the Northern Kentucky track opens its 2012 Winter/Spring Meet on New Year’s Day.

The highlight of the meet is the 41st running of the $500,000 Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (G3) on March 24. In 2011, its first year under Vinery sponsorship, the 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds produced the Kentucky Derby (G1) winner. Animal Kingdom trained up to the Derby after winning the Spiral Stakes over the Turfway Polytrack, becoming the first horse to win the Derby without previous experience racing on dirt.

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Tuesday, December 27 2011

Lotta Lovin Shows a Lotta Heart in Gowell Win

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 26, 2011 – Lotta Lovin showed a lotta heart in the last half-furlong of the $50,000 Gowell Stakes, getting up in the final jumps under Victor Lebron to take the six-furlong race by half a length over St. Louis City. A. P. Diva, the 3-1 favorite, was another three-quarters of a length back in third after leading from the top of the stretch.

Both of Lotta Lovin’s previous wins had come wire-to-wire, but a shaky break put her in fourth early, albeit less than three lengths off the lead. “She broke a little outward and I had to get into her mouth a little bit to direct her,” said Lebron. “She has a light, soft mouth and she kind of threw her head in the first jump, so I was a little worried at the beginning. But then I placed her and she seemed comfortable with it, so I left her there, kind of cruising, trying to time it right. There were two in front and they were battling, so I thought, okay, if they come back just a little bit I’ll be right there on the money.”

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Friday, December 23 2011

Full Field for Gowell Stakes Starts Turfway’s Holiday Schedule

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 22, 2011 – Turfway Park’s traditional post-Christmas week of live racing begins with a 10-race card on Monday that features the $50,000 Gowell Stakes, six furlongs for 2-year-old fillies.

Owner William Stiritz and trainer Scott Becker won the Prairie Bayou Stakes here last Saturday with Proceed Bee and return Monday with St. Louis City. The filly makes her second career start after winning a maiden special at Hawthorne Dec. 8 at the Gowell distance. She pushed a hot pace in that dirt race before winning by five lengths in 1:10.83. The Gowell will be her Polytrack debut. Ben Creed has been named to ride. St. Louis City breaks from post three.

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Sunday, December 18 2011

Proceed Bee Gets Best of Photo in Turfway’s Prairie Bayo

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 17, 2011 – The finish line for the Prairie Bayou Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday came just in time for Proceed Bee, who held off a tremendous late surge by Wealth to Me to win by a head. Matty’s Trail was third, three more lengths back.

With Rodney Prescott aboard, Proceed Bee broke from the outside post in the field of 10 and settled half a dozen lengths off the lead through the first half-mile. Up front, Plutonium and Becky’s Kitten swapped the lead in a sizzling :22.73, :45.87, and 1:11.09, a pace that would not hold for the 1 1/8-mile distance. Meanwhile, Wealth to Me had broken poorly, was nearly 18 lengths off the lead at the half-mile mark, and still nearly 12 lengths back after six of the nine furlongs.

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Saturday, December 17 2011

Graded Winners Head Big Prairie Bayou Field

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 16, 2011 – The $50,000 Prairie Bayou Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday has drawn a competitive field of 11, led by graded stakes winners Proceed Bee and Mad Flatter.

Mad Flatter comes in to the 1 1/8-mile Prairie Bayou off a third place finish at that distance in the Carl Rose Classic at Calder a month ago. Two races back he was first in the Grade 3 Spend a Buck, a half-furlong shorter and also at Calder. He has won on all-weather tracks and trains on the Keeneland Polytrack, so his first trip to Turfway should throw him no curves. Mad Flatter races on or near the lead, and breaking from the six post should not compromise that style. Jon Court will ride for trainer Jeff Thornbury.

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Thursday, December 15 2011

Turfway Lowers Pick 4 Takeout to 14 Percent

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 15, 2011 – The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has approved Turfway Park’s request to lower takeout on its Pick 4 wager from 22 percent to 14 percent, effective January 1.

The approval was given at the Commission’s regular meeting on Dec. 14.

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Thursday, December 08 2011

La Gran Bailadora heads Turfway’s My Charmer Stakes

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 8, 2011 – La Gran Bailadora loves Turfway Park and gets another chance to prove it this Saturday in the $50,000 My Charmer Stakes.

Winner of the Grade 3 Distorted Humor Kentucky Cup Distaff here in September and Grade 1-placed, La Gran Bailadora is the class of the My Charmer, which drew a dozen fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles. She has four wins, one second, and one third in six races on the Turfway Polytrack, and in 11 starts on all-weather surfaces here and elsewhere has missed the money only twice.

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Sunday, December 04 2011

Determined Fortune Play Takes Holiday Inaugural

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 3, 2011 – Fortune Play had the far outside post and raced widest down the backstretch, but she dug in to hit the wire first at Turfway Park Saturday, taking the $50,000 Holiday Inaugural Stakes by a head over Waccamaw. Hyperlink was another 2 1/2 lengths behind in third.

Pushed through half a mile by Five Star Fun, Waccamaw set a hot pace, marking the first quarter of the six furlongs in :22 flat, the half-mile in :45.21, and five furlongs in :57.93. Fortune Play raced close to the pace but wide to the top of the turn, and as Five Star Fun gave in, jockey Ramon Vazquez set Fortune Play down to challenge Waccamaw on the turn for home. Fortune Play wrested the lead away in deep stretch but Waccamaw came again, forcing Fortune Play to dig for more and give it a stride or two before the wire. Final time was 1:11.62.

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Friday, December 02 2011

Turfway’s Holiday Inaugural Draws Overflow Crowd

FLORENCE, Ky., Dec. 1, 2011 – The Holiday Meet stakes schedule at Turfway Park kicks off Saturday with an overflow crowd for the $50,000 Holiday Inaugural, six furlongs for fillies and mares three years old and up.

Dr. Diamonds Prize won the Gowell Stakes here last year and in her most recent start was disqualified to fourth after finishing third, beaten just half a length, in the Raven Run at Keeneland at 76-1. She set the pace in that race at seven furlongs and the cut back to six in the Holiday Inaugural bodes well. The 3-year-old filly has twice tasted disqualification, the other from a win at Presque Isle, but if new rider John McKee can keep her straight she has a chance to earn her second Turfway trophy. Mark Hubley trains.

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Tuesday, November 29 2011

Turfway Park Holiday Meet Opens Thursday

FLORENCE, Ky., Nov. 28, 2011 – Live Thoroughbred racing returns to Turfway Park this Thursday, Dec. 1, the start of the Holiday Meet and the beginning of the track’s winter racing season.

Highlighting the Holiday Meet are five $50,000 stakes:

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Tuesday, October 04 2011

Turfway Fall Meet Shows Slight Gain On-Track

FLORENCE, Ky., Oct. 3, 2011 – Turfway Park ended its 2011 fall meet with a slight increase in on-track handle and a small decline in all-sources wagering on its live races.

On-track play on Turfway’s live races totaled $1,640,490, up 0.4 percent over the 2010 fall meet. Handle from all sources on the track’s live races was $27,172,667, down 3.9 percent.

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Sunday, September 25 2011

Future Prospect Upsets WinStar Kentucky Cup

FLORENCE, Ky., Sept. 24, 2011 – Future Prospect turned in a stunning front-running effort to upset the $200,000 WinStar Kentucky Cup (G2) at Turfway Park Saturday, paying off at 18-1 and rewarding two years of patient rehabilitation by owner/trainer Dodson Skaggs.

Breaking from post six, the 7-year-old gelding was out of the gate first. Strike Impact, who broke from post two, got to the quarter-mile timer ahead of him and set that mark in :24.47, but after that the race was all about Future Prospect. With Edgar Prado in the irons and under pressure throughout, Future Prospect set the half in :47.97 and the six-furlong mark in 1:11.82 before coming home in 1:44.71. General Quarters, who had been close up throughout the race, finished three-quarters of a length back in second after a very game effort to stay with the winner. Demarcation closed to be third, another six lengths back. The race covered 1 1/16 miles on Polytrack.

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