Desormeaux, who won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness this year aboard Big Brown, was named on four mounts today at Belmont Park today. He also picked up a mount aboard Beboblues Art in the fourth race, as jockey Eibar Coa is not riding today.
Coa is still recovering from a sore back and bruised ribs he suffered in a fall at Belmont Park on Friday. That fall cost him losing mounts on El Sultry Sun at Colonial Downs on Saturday and Jungle Brew in Sunday’s Queen’s Plate at Woodbine.
“He’s still very sore and we’re taking it day-to-day,” said Coa’s agent, Matt Muzikar. “He has mounts tomorrow and I’m taking entries for him on Friday. What hurts the most is the left side of his lower back, where he got stepped on by the horse.”
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The Sixty Minute 6, a new wager combining races from Belmont Park, Monmouth Park, Philadelphia Park and Delaware Park, debuted last Saturday. No one correctly selected all six winners in the initial Sixty Minute 6, producing a carryover of $64,477.55 into this Saturday’s wager.
Total handle on Saturday’s Sixty Minute 6 topped $114,000. The action kicked off with Belmont’s sixth race, won by Optimistic Steve ($22), then shifted south to Monmouth for its seventh race, captured by Fleet Appeal ($19.60) and then to Delaware Park for its eighth race, won by Field Sport ($9.40).
Belmont’s seventh race, won by Veritable ($4.70), provided the fourth leg of the Sixty Minute 6, with Monmouth’s eighth race, captured by Evenings End ($3.20) taking the penultimate contest. Less than an hour after it all began, Philly Park provided the biggest upset in the bet, when Loosends ($37.40) won the 10th race and finished out the Sixty Minute 6. Five out of six in the wager returned $3,907.60.
Joining together Monmouth, Philadelphia Park, Delaware and the New York Racing Association, the Sixty Minute 6 combines a pair of races from two of the tracks with one each from the other two. The races are chosen so that all six run within a one-hour span.
The Sixty Minute 6 will be offered every Saturday, through Aug. 30.
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Bustin Stones, an undefeated New York-bred son of City Zip who was a sensation over the winter and early spring, is back in training and worked a half-mile on Belmont Park’s fast training track on Tuesday in a bullet 47.69.
He has not raced since winning the Grade 1 Carter Handicap at Aqueduct, his sixth win in as many starts.
“After the Carter, he just stopped doing well,” said trainer Bruce Levine. “We hoped to get him ready for the Met Mile, but he wasn’t himself. He stopped eating and he lost some color. So, we just gave him a little break. He missed about three weeks of training, so we’ve had to re-group.
“He worked really well yesterday, so, hopefully, he’s come back.”
Levine said that Bustin Stones would be pointed for the Grade 2, $250,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap at six furlongs at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday, July 26. A victory in that race would automatically qualify Bustin Stones for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita on October 25.
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The coming weekend, June 28-29, be an exciting one at Belmont for four reasons: the Grade 1 Suburban Handicap presented by Shadwell Farm and the Grade 1 Mother Goose on Saturday, June 28 and the Tremont and Astoria on Sunday, June 29.
The 122nd running of the $400,000 Suburban presented by Shadwell Farm for three-year-olds and up at a mile and a quarter will likely feature A. P. Arrow, Angliana, Harlington, Naughty New Yorker, Rising Moon, and Solar Flare. Better Than Bonds and Student Council are still possibilities.
The 52nd running of the Mother Goose for three-year-old fillies at nine furlongs, brings in two division stars. Proud Spell, the Kentucky Oaks winner who sports a 5-2-1 record from eight career starts, and Music Note, who has won two of three career starts, including an impressive seven-length victory here on May 22, will both be taking a shot at the lion’s share of the $250,000 purse. Hamsa and Pious Ashley are questionable.
On Sunday, the 116th running of the $100,000-added Tremont for two-year-olds at five and a half furlongs will likely include Retap, Essenceofmoon, Houseful, and Mr. Mistoffelees.
The 102nd running of the Astoria, the filly counterpart to the Tremont, wraps up the weekend’s stakes action. Ancient Future, Grilfriendontheside, Juliet’s Spirit, Golden Artemis, Seek On, and Lori Z’s Punch are confirmed starters, while Bold Union, Boom Town Sall or Ride on Josephine are questionable.
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Summer is here, and the Party at the Park continues every Friday through July 18, with first race post at Belmont Park at 3 p.m.
As always, no admission is charged before 1 p.m. and the first race starts at 3 sharp.
Drink specials are served in the festivities tent from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m., while in the tent at 7:15 p.m., following the last race, live concerts featuring local Long Island bands take the stage.
Friday’s featured band will be Pink Noise, described as energetic, funny, and talented, and should keep the up-beat mood and the party going. It’s a six-piece band with female and male vocals, backed by keyboards, two guitars, a bass guitar and drums.
On Monday, August 11, 2008, members of the jockey colony at Saratoga Race Course will host the New York State Police in the sixth annual charity softball game to benefit the Catie Hoch Foundation and the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund.
The game will be played at the East Side Recreation Field, Lake Avenue, Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.
Bill Parcells, former National Football League coach and current executive vice president of football operations for the Miami Dolphins, will throw out the honorary first pitch of the night at 6:30 p.m., with the game to follow at 7 p.m.
This year, the game will be dedicated to the memory of NYRA’s “colors man” Louis Olah, who passed away in March at age 79. A former jockey, Olah was in charge of making sure that the riders had the correct silks or “colors” when they raced, and it was a job he handled for 41 years.
Fans are encouraged to bring cameras and ask for autographs and to take advantage of the opportunity to meet and great the jockeys before and after the game. The event also features prizes donated by local businesses. Cost is $5 per person; $20 for a family of five or more. The first 200 paid admissions will receive an 8 x 10 photo of the jockeys.
Ric Mitchell of B95.5 FM will be the master of ceremonies.