Monday, January 05 2009


JANUARY SCHEDULE PREVIEW


January racing is underway at Tampa Bay Downs with five live Thoroughbred racing days a week. Dark days are scheduled on Mondays and Wednesdays, with the exception of a bonus live racing day on Wednesday, January 21.

Tampa Bay Downs rings in the New Year with Skyway Festival Day on January 17th, in which the bright three-year-old stars of the Oldsmar oval compete in the $65,000 Gasparilla Stakes for fillies and the $75,000 Pasco Stakes for colts and geldings.





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TIZFIZ REWARDS DELGADILLO, DeLEON WITH SAN GORGONIO UPSET


ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2009) – Claimed for $50,000 two races previous, Tizfiz provided journeyman jockey Agapito Delgadillo and trainer Rafael DeLeon with their most prestigious career victories Sunday by virtue of a desperate wire-to-wire triumph in Santa Anita’s 40th running of the $150,000 San Gorgonio Handicap.

At the age of 42, Delgadillo skillfully guided the 5-year-old Tiznow mare through moderate fractions during the 1 1/8-mile turf journey while preserving just enough to repel the closing bid of 2-1 second choice Marzelline by a nose at odds of 9-1.





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STABLE NOTES, SUNDAY, JANUARY 4TH, 2009


MAGNUM RETURNS IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL HANDICAP

Magnum is scheduled to make his first start in more than five months when the gelding bred in Argentina runs in Saturday’s Grade II, $150,000 San Pasqual Handicap, a major prep for the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap on March 7.

“He had a quarter crack,” trainer Darrell Vienna said in explaining his absence. “This is a logical starting point back for him, because he’s a horse without any conditions, and he’s got some age on him. He’s been a useful horse and he’s paid his way.”





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JUSTWHISTLEDIXIE WHISTLES IN RUTHLESS


By Francis LaBelle Jr.

Justwhistledixie, the most accomplished of the field Sunday, proved to be a deserving favorite as she scored a 3 ½-length victory over Gnome’s Delight in the 32nd running of the $70,795 Ruthless Stakes for three-year-old fillies at six furlongs.

Owned by West Point Thoroughbreds and Lakland Farm, the Dixie Union filly overtook longshot Indian Rush, who had gone the first quarter in 22.41 and the half in 46.05 on Aqueduct’s fast inner dirt track. With jockey Rajiv Maragh in the irons, Justwhistledixie ran by her target and was never seriously challenged, as she completed the sprint in 1:10.81 for her third straight victory after two losses.





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Notonthesamepage Booked for Fountain of Youth


Trainer Wesley Ward gave a ‘thumbs up’ sign Sunday morning at Gulfstream Park the morning after Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s Notonthesamepage rolled to a near-record setting victory in the $100,000 Spectacular Bid for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park.

The connections of the Kentucky homebred son of Catienus will point him for the $250,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) to be run at one mile here on Feb. 28.





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Gemswick Park Wins Three-Horse Photo Thriller in Old Hat


Melnyk Racing Stable’s 3-year-old Kentucky homebred filly Gemswick Park was up in the final steps under jockey John R. Velazquez to post a nose victory over Martin Schwartz’ favored Elusive Heat in Sunday’s $100,000 Old Hat Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park.

Elusive Heat was made the 11-to-10 favorite in the field of seven 3-year-old fillies after winning her only previous start impressively in October at Belmont Park, and took command early in the six-furlong test with Gemswick Park stalking from the outside and Dare To Dream Farm’s Frolic’s Dream close-up on the inside down the backstretch. It became a three-horse battle to the wire in deep stretch with Frolic’s Dream finishing only a nose back of the runner-up in third.





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BAZE, HOLLENDORFER HAVE TRIPLES


ALBANY -- Jockey Russell Baze recorded a riding triple and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer saddled three winners Sunday at Golden Gate Fields.

Baze and Hollendorfer teamed up to win the last two races on the card, taking the eighth race with Paul's Hope ($6.40) and the ninth with I Wanna Getaway ($2.80).

Baze started his hat trick when he won the fourth race aboard Penuche Royale ($8.80). Hollendorfer kicked off his training triple when he captured the first race with Warren's Pepe ($6.40).





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Sunday, January 04 2009


Huge Crowd Turns Out for 2009 Opening


A huge crowd delighted in balmy South Florida weather, full fields and winning performances from the popular gray horse Delightful Kiss in the Hal’s Hope Stakes and the ultra-fast 3-year-old Notonthesamepage in the Spectacular Bid Stakes at Gulfstream Park Saturday, opening day of the 79-day stand.

“This is what racing is all about,” said Gulfstream Park President and General Manager Bill Murphy. “There were a few opening-day glitches, but we had them ironed out in short order and all in all it was a great day of racing.”





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Delightful Kiss Charges to Victory in Hal’s Hope


Hobeau Farm’s 5-year-old homebred Delightful Kiss produced a powerful stretch charge coming from off the pace under jockey Calvin Borel to capture the $100,000 Hal’s Hope Handicap (G3) Saturday at Gulfstream Park by three lengths over Mitchell Farm’s Bullsbay. The winner was timed in 1:36:13 for the one-turn mile run over a fast track.

A roan/gray Florida-bred by Kissin Kris, Delightful Kiss was making his first start since finishing a game second behind Einstein in the Clark Handicap (G2) at Churchill Downs in late November. Trainer Pete Anderson has taken his talented one-horse stable back and forth across the nation for major events the last two seasons, and had won the All American Stakes (G3) at Golden Gate and finished a close-up fourth in the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Marathon at Santa Anita on Oct. 25 before the Clark.





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Notonthesamepage Dominates Spectacular Bid Stakes Saturday


Ken and Rarah Ramsey’s 3-year-old Kentucky homebred Notonthesamepage took command from the start of Saturday’s $100,000 Spectacular Bid Stakes on opening day at Gulfstream Park, and drew off to a commanding 8¼-length victory over Kramer Stable’s You Luckie Mann.

The winner ran the six furlongs in 1:08:48 on the fast track, missing the track record by 2/100s of a second.

Trained by Wesley Ward and ridden by Elvis Trujillo, Notonthesamepage is a son of Catenius who was making his first start since tiring to last of 11 after setting the early pace in the Breeders’ Futurity (G1) on Polytrack at Keeneland on Oct. 4. He paid $11.40.





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GP Barn notes 1-3


Beethoven Rolls Over Gulfstream Strip

Two of John Oxley’s top 3-year-old prospects worked out Saturday morning at Gulfstream Park for trainer John Ward, including Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) winner Beethoven, and jockeys who won two of the last three editions of the Kentucky Derby (G1) rode them.

Calvin Borel, who rode Street Sense to win the 2007 Derby, shipped in to work Beethoven, going three furlongs in 36. Edgar Prado, rider of 2006 Derby winner Barbaro, was aboard Strategic Decision, a maiden out of the champion mare Beautiful Pleasure. He was timed an easy half-mile in 50 1/5.





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Loch Dubh makes the leap to stakes winner in Turfway Prevue


FLORENCE, KY . . . January 3, 2009 . . . Loch Dubh proved himself a good investment Saturday at Turfway Park, drawing off to win the $50,000 Turfway Prevue Stakes in his second start off a $15,000 claim at Churchill Downs.

Asked what prompted the claim, trainer Jeff Talley said, “He’s a big, good-looking horse. We watched him in the paddock every race at Churchill, and then [trainer Eddie Kenneally] ran him for thirty [thousand]. I was mad I didn’t take him that day.”





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