Wednesday, March 23 2011

Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes awaits draw

Fields set for undercard stakes

FLORENCE, Ky., Mar. 23, 2011 – With the draw for the $500,000 Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes scheduled for this evening, the field continues to hold steady at a dozen for the Grade 3 Kentucky Derby prep at Turfway Park this Saturday..

Purse too tempting for Brown to pass up

By his own admission, trainer Chad Brown has not always been certain of the best path for his Lemon Drop Kid three-year-old Beachcombing. Allowance races didn’t fill. Stakes races wound up with unsatisfactory course conditions. But Brown likes the potential offered by the Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes and its generous $500,000 purse.

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Tuesday, March 22 2011

Resourceful connections look to Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes

FLORENCE, Ky., Mar. 22, 2011 – Being a successful trainer of Thoroughbred racehorses over the long haul requires a remarkable resilience, an ability to be flexible and to look beyond the last race to the next one. Three of the trainers who hope to run horses in the Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (G3) Saturday have recently called on that ancient wisdom.

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Monday, March 21 2011

Gate should be full for Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes

FLORENCE, Ky., Mar. 21, 2011 – The field for the Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (G3) at Turfway Park this Saturday has attracted an overflow crowd of hopefuls. Preference to run is determined first by graded stakes wins, then by stakes wins, and then by career earnings. Eighteen are reported to be pointing toward the race but only a dozen can start. Entries will be drawn Wednesday, March 23, at a cocktail reception in the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent at Turfway, 4 to 6:30 p.m.

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Sunday, March 20 2011

Baryshnikov a stakes winner after Tejano Run at Turfway

FLORENCE, Ky., March 19, 2011 – Baryshnikov took his affinity for the Turfway Park track to the next level Saturday, winning the $50,000 Tejano Run Stakes to get his first stakes trophy. Stablemate and even-money favorite Dean’s Kitten was 1 3/4 lengths behind in second. Mint Chip was another half-length back in third, while Dynamite Bob stayed in for fourth, less than a length farther back and eight lengths clear of the next in line.

The win was Baryshnikov’s fourth in his last five starts, all coming at Turfway. He also has a second and three thirds on Turfway’s Polytrack surface.

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Saturday, March 19 2011

Veteran rider Ouzts gets career win 5,600

FLORENCE, Ky., March 18, 2011 . . . Veteran rider Perry Ouzts, 56, earned career win number 5,600 Friday at Turfway Park, hustling fellow veteran Joe Six Pack, a 10-year-old gelding, to victory in the fourth race.

Ouzts currently ranks 18th among all riders by number of wins. Of those ahead of him on the list, only Russell Baze (1st), Ouzts’s cousin Earlie Fires (9th), Edgar Prado (11th), and Mario Pino (15th) are still active.

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Old and new combine at Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes

FLORENCE, Ky., March 18, 2011 – The Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park next Saturday, March 26, blends tradition with new elements in its first year of sponsorship by Vinery Ltd. This year marks the 40th running of the Grade 3 race, which carries a $500,000 purse. The first-place share virtually guarantees the winner a spot in the Kentucky Derby (G1) gate.

The Maker’s Mark VIP Tent, sponsored since 2003 by premium bourbon distiller Maker’s Mark, is again the day’s premium venue, but guests in the massive tent will find a new, airier décor in soft blue and white. The tent seats about 1,800 and offers a deluxe buffet, premium open bar, live entertainment by the Greg Lee Trio, and a private viewing area. Returning favorites in the tent are the Maker’s Mark cake, deep chocolate generously flavored with Maker’s Mark and iced to resemble the bourbon maker’s famed red wax, and the Rube Goldberg-esque Maker’s Mark bar.

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Sunday, March 13 2011

Smart ride, head win for Spring Party in the Wintergreen

FLORENCE, Ky., March 12, 2011 – A canny ride by Ben Creed helped Spring Party earn her first stakes win, the $50,000 Wintergreen Stakes at Turfway Park on Saturday. Coming into the stretch, the six-year-old mare raced all out for the wire and got home a head before the aggressively closing La Gran Bailadora. Hot Hot Mama was another 1 1/4 lengths back in third. Final time for the mile race was 1:39.99

War Tigress set the moderate pace, getting the first two quarters in :24.55 and :49.11. In the meantime, Spring Party had settled into fourth going into the first turn as La Gran Bailadora staked out her own position at the back of the field of nine older fillies and mares.

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Sunday, February 20 2011

Max Silverhammer bangs out Dust Commander win

FLORENCE, Ky., Feb. 19, 2011 – Max Silverhammer banged out his first stakes win Saturday at Turfway Park, taking the $50,000 Dust Commander Stakes by three-quarters of a length over the fast-closing Wealth to Me. Baryshnikov was another length back in third. Final time for the one-mile Dust Commander was 1:40.09.

“[Trainer] Bill [Denzik Jr.] said if he breaks well, leave him there, but don’t take him back,” said winning jockey John McKee. “That’s exactly what I did. If you take him back, you’re asking him to do more than he’s supposed to. I let him break and he put me in the race right away, so I let him be comfortable right where he was. Turning for home I called on him and he was there.”

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Sunday, February 13 2011

La Gran Bailadora revs up late in Likely Exchange win

FLORENCE, Ky., Feb. 12, 2011 – La Gran Bailadora took her own sweet time through most of the $50,000 Likely Exchange Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday but got down to business in a hurry turning for home to post a 2 3/4-length length win over Hungry Tigress. Jonmil’s Edge was another 3 1/4 lengths back in third. Final time for the one-mile race for older fillies and mares was 1:41.57.

“She was taking a little time to catch up on the bridle, so I just let her be for the first part,” said winning rider Jozbin Santana. “I started getting after her at the five-eighths pole, and when we were coming to the quarter-pole, that’s when she started picking it up. Around the three-sixteenths, she just exploded there and went on. Then she was waiting on the other horses.”

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Thursday, February 10 2011

Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce to honor Bill Samuels Jr.

FLORENCE, Ky., Feb. 10, 2011 – Before he retires in April after 35 years at the helm of premier bourbon distillery Maker’s Mark, Bill Samuels Jr. will receive a fond farewell from Northern Kentucky. The Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce will salute Samuels at Bourbon, Bill and ‘Breds, a special cocktail reception in conjunction with the Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes post position draw at Turfway Park on Wednesday, March 23.

Scheduled from 4:00 to 6:30 p.m. in the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent, the social networking and happy hour event keys on three of Kentucky’s most cherished traditions: handmade bourbon, Thoroughbred racing, and storytelling.

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Sunday, February 06 2011

WEBN win moves Twinspired along Derby path

FLORENCE, Ky., Feb. 5, 2011 – Twinspired proved a deserving favorite and impressive winner in the $50,000 WEBN Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday, putting away Taptowne with a furlong to go and drawing off to win by 4 1/4 lengths. R Fast Cat was second, a head better than Taptowne in the photo for place.

Winning rider Jozbin Santana had to adjust his game plan but the change made no difference to Twinspired. “I was sitting in a perfect spot around the first turn,” said Santana. “I was on the best horse and I was on the outside, just waiting until the three-eighths pole to let the horse run. But the 11 horse (Taptowne) came at me a little bit earlier so I had to move so I wouldn’t be stuck behind heels. But my horse responded really well.”

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Friday, February 04 2011

Full field tries for WEBN Stakes trophy at Turfway

FLORENCE, Ky., Feb 4, 2011 – Banjammer, second by the barest nose in the first local prep for the Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (G3), returns Saturday to try for the win the second prep, the $50,000 WEBN Stakes. Fourteen three-year-olds were entered for the one-mile WEBN, with 12 the maximum to start.

Despite being squeezed back at the start and getting away from the gate dead last in the first prep, the Turfway Prevue sprint on Jan. 8, Banjammer powered seven wide into the stretch and barely missed catching the winner. He likes to come from behind in any case, and the WEBN Stakes will give him more room to unwind his late run. Banjammer comes into the race off a four-furlong work last Saturday, one of two timed as best of 27 over the Polytrack at Keeneland. Bed Creed was aboard for his last two races, including a maiden special win at Turfway two starts back, and has the call again for trainer Eric Reed.

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