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Updated: 23 hours 43 min ago

TCA Stallion Auction Set for January

Tue, 2021-12-21 12:25

Thoroughbred Charities of America's 32nd annual Stallion Season Auction will begin Jan. 5 and conclude Jan. 9. The fundraiser opens with an online auction of stallion seasons at 9 a.m. Jan. 5 and continues through 4:30 p.m. EST Jan. 7. Over 150 seasons will be available in the online auction, including to stallions Audible, Basin, Candy Ride, McKinzie, More Than Ready, Speightstown, and Volatile. A full list of seasons is available here.

An online silent auction of non-season items, including halters worn by Life is Good, Curlin, Charlatan, Tapit, Knicks Go and more will be offered. A list of silent auction items is available here.

Most of the seasons will sell during the online auction, however, select seasons to Bolt d'Oro, Charlatan, City of Light, Constitution, Liam's Map, Maxfield (with 2023 breed back), Nyquist (with 2023 breed back), Quality Road, and Yaupon (with 2023 breed back) will be sold at the 'Tis the Seasons Celebration Jan. 9 at 5:30 p.m. at Grand Reserve in Lexington. Bidders or their authorized agents may bid on select seasons by attending the event in-person or they may email ecrady@tca.org to register to bid online.

Non-season items, including a John Deere Gator, accommodations at the Hill 'n' Dale Farms at Xalapa “tree house,” a wall box and stall webbing from Charlie Whittingham's barn, and more will also be offered in the live auction.

Tickets can be purchased here.

The auction is generously sponsored by Limestone Bank, Coolmore America, Equine Medical Associates, Bourbon Lane Stable, L.V. Harkness & Co., BloodHorse, Paulick Report, and Thoroughbred Daily News.

For further information regarding the TCA Stallion Season Auction visit tca.org or call (859) 276-4989.

The post TCA Stallion Auction Set for January appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Asmussen Wins 17th Remington Title

Tue, 2021-12-21 12:11

Steve Asmussen captured his 17th Remington Park training title–and sixth in a row–while Danny Caldwell won the owner's title for the second consecutive time and 12th time overall when the Oklahoma track concluded its season last Friday.

“I'm obviously very blessed to have had all the opportunities I've had a Remington Park and I'm very thankful,” Asmussen said. “Pablo [Ocampo] has been with me to handle all the horses and he deserves a lot of the credit.”

Caldwell is Remington Park's all-time winningest owner.

“I'm proud to say this is my home track,” Caldwell said. “It's a privilege to race here. It's hard to win races anywhere, but especially at Remington Park.”

The post Asmussen Wins 17th Remington Title appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Lone Star ’22 Season Opens April 28

Tue, 2021-12-21 12:01

Lone Star Park's 2022 Thoroughbred racing season will begin Apr. 28 and, with 48 live racing days, will conclude July 24. The season will include 21 stakes worth a combined  $2,825,000–a $600,000 increase from the 2021 stakes schedule. The highlight of the schedule is Lone Star Million Day on Memorial Day, and the marquee race on the card is the $400,000 GIII Steve Sexton Mile, for 3-year-olds and up at one mile.

New to this year's Lone Star Million day card will be the $100,000 guaranteed Speightstown Sprint for 3-year-olds and up going six furlongs on the dirt.

Lone Star Showcase Day will be held June 19 with five stakes worth a total of $375,000, while the Summer Turf Festival will be returning July 16 with four stakes worth a total of $750,000. Stars of Texas Day will be held July 17 with five stakes worth $425,000.

Total purses will average an estimated $268,000 per day for the 48-day meet

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Allen Named RTCA White Horse Award Winner

Mon, 2021-12-20 17:03

Marshall Allen has been named the winner of this year's Race Track Chaplaincy of America White Horse Award. Allen, an assistant trainer at Emerald Downs, saved the life of long-time horse owner Jim Foulkes, who had collapsed in the track's barn area last May. Allen began CPR and assisted EMTs when they arrived on the scene. To see Allen's story, click here.

Also honored by RTCA White Horse nominations this year were: Julie Berry from Blue Grass Farms Charities; Jonathan Estrada from Belmont Park; Nick Garafola and Veronica Gallardo from Belmont Park; Sebastian 'Bas' Nichols from Ellis Park; and Marvin Navas Prado from Ellis Park.

The White Horse Awards banquet was not held this year due to the pandemic, but nominees will be recognized at their respective locations by RTCA chaplains and representatives.

The post Allen Named RTCA White Horse Award Winner appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Owner Who Filed Remsen Protest Surprised NYSGC Won’t Hear It

Mon, 2021-12-20 16:02

A Monday news story in the Blood-Horse stating that the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) would be taking no action on a formal protest lodged by the owner of the runner-up in the Dec. 4 GII Remsen S. came as a surprise to that owner and his attorney, who told TDN later in the day they had received no communication from the commission indicating that the protest wouldn't be allowed to advance.

The matter involves Jeff Drown, the owner of Remsen second-place finisher Zandon (Upstart), who said that the actions of victor Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo) and that colt's jockey, Irad Ortiz, Jr., cost him the win, which was decided by only a nose. In the immediate aftermath of the race, the stewards conducted an inquiry and listened to a foul claim lodged by jockey John Velazquez, but let the order of finish stand without any disqualification.

On Dec. 9, Drown, through his lawyer, Drew Mollica, lodged a protest with the NYSGC over the non-DQ, arguing that the very tight margin of victory was part of what merited a second look by the commission.

The Blood-Horse first reported Dec. 20 that there is no mechanism in this instance for the NYSGC to overturn the stewards' decision. That story quoted NYSGC communications director Brad Maione, who said, “The Remsen was declared official by the stewards. There is no process for appeal once the race is declared final by the stewards.”

That decision was news to Mollica, who spoke to TDN on Monday both before and after checking with his client to confirm that the NYSGC had never alerted either of them that their formal protest would not move forward.

“Neither my client nor I have been officially informed of any action or inaction by the gaming commission,” Mollica said. “As such, we have no comment. But we are surprised there are press stories about this without the gaming commission contacting us. When we are officially informed that that's their position, we'll weigh our options.”

When TDN attempted to get a clarification from Maione via email Monday afternoon, Maione did not directly answer a question asking if the NYSGC had made any attempt to communicate with Drown. Instead, Maione's reply contained only a link to the original stewards' decision from Dec. 4, plus a copy of commission rule 4025.1.

That rule states, “Every person subscribing to a sweepstake or entering a horse in a race to be run under this Article accepts the decision of the stewards or the decision of the commission, as the case may be, on any question relating to a race or to racing.”

As the two colts crested the eighth pole in lockstep for the final furlong of the Remsen, Mo Donegal tightened the gap between them under right-handed stick work from Ortiz, then the two colts bumped and brushed approaching the wire.

The Equibase chart described how Ortiz threw “repeated exaggerated crosses with the left-hand rein near the face of the runner-up” in an “attempt to intimidate” Zandon.

Velazquez said post-race that Mo Donegal, “laid on top of me right before the wire and just beat me by very little.”

The day after the Remsen, Ortiz was suspended 30 days by the Aqueduct stewards for careless riding, primarily for his role in unseating another jockey in a Dec. 3 race. But state steward Braulio Baeza, Jr. told Daily Racing Form Dec. 5 that part of that penalty also had to do with Ortiz's stretch ride in the Remsen.

In addition, there were two substitute stewards on the job at Aqueduct on the day of the Remsen, when state steward Baeza and Jockey Club steward Jennifer Durenberger were both not officiating the races.

The post Owner Who Filed Remsen Protest Surprised NYSGC Won’t Hear It appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

West, Gordon Launch Highgate Sales

Mon, 2021-12-20 15:50

Jill Gordon and Jacob West have launched Highgate Sales, a new sales company which will make its debut at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Winter Mixed Sale in February.

Highgate Sales will offer consignments at breeding stock, yearling, and horses of racing age sales, as well as offering appraisals, private purchases and sales, and portfolio management services.

Gordon formerly worked at Claiborne Farm as the Sales and Client Relations Manager for 3 1/2 years after a three-year stint at Warrendale Sales. In her role at Claiborne, she oversaw all aspects of the public sales consignment as well as outside sales recruitment. She also assisted with private sales and handled client communication throughout the year.

“Jill was a fantastic asset to the team during her tenure at Claiborne. Her depth of knowledge of the industry and work ethic is next to none. I know she will be successful as she takes on this new endeavor and I wish her the best,” said Claiborne Farm President Walker Hancock.

Gordon will help Claiborne Farm transition through next month's Keeneland January Breeding Stock Sale before starting her full time role at Highgate Sales.

“I am very grateful and appreciative for my time at Claiborne Farm,” Gordon said. “I have built some great relationships and have been surrounded by some of the best horses and families in the stud book. I look forward to partnering with Jacob and combining our skill sets to best serve our clients in this new chapter of my career under the Highgate banner.”

Gordon was recently elected to the Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Managers' Club's Board of Directors.

West began his career in racing as a yearling groom at Taylor Made before moving up to the operation's Buyer Account Manager. West also worked as the Director of Bloodstock Services for Three Chimneys Farm where he managed the farm's private and public sales acquisitions.

West has been the Vice President of Bloodstock for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners since 2017, when he also launched West Bloodstock. This year West was appointed as the U.S. agent for Goffs.

“In forming this partnership with Jill Gordon the main focus will be on fulfilling our clients' needs,” West said. “Jill brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Public Sales space. We look forward to working together and launching Highgate Sales.”

The post West, Gordon Launch Highgate Sales appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Visa Cap Increased for 2022

Mon, 2021-12-20 14:58

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Labor (DOL) will publish a joint temporary final rule to make available an additional 20,000 H-2B visas for the first half of fiscal year 2022 that ends Mar. 31, 2022, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced in a Monday press release.

“Tremendously high demand for H-2B visas has led to this unprecedented move by the DHS and DOL,” said NTRA President and CEO Alex Waldrop. “Competition for these visas has been fierce for many years, but is particularly so in today's strong job market. We encourage affected trainers to act quickly.”

The supplemental H-2B visa allocation consists of 13,500 visas available to returning workers who received an H-2B visa, or were otherwise granted H-2B status, during one of the last three fiscal years. The remaining 6,500 visas, which are exempt from the returning worker requirement, are reserved for nationals of Haiti and the Northern Triangle countries of Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.

This nonimmigrant visa program is used by many industries that need temporary non-agricultural help when domestic workers are unavailable. Currently, Congress has set the H-2B cap at 66,000 per fiscal year, with 33,000 for workers who begin employment in the first half of the fiscal year (Oct. 1-Mar. 31) and 33,000 for workers who begin employment in the second half of the fiscal year (Apr. 1-Sept. 30).

The post Visa Cap Increased for 2022 appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Indiana Grand Offers ‘Road to Louisville’ Contest

Mon, 2021-12-20 14:39

Indiana Grand Racing & Casino will be hosting a “Road to Louisville” contest beginning in early 2022 and offering up to $50,000 in prize money. The 18-week contest begins Jan. 8 and continues to the Kentucky Derby May 7. The winner of the contest will have the option to purchase a yearling package at the 2022 ITOBA Fall Sale valued at $30,000, courtesy of the Indiana Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (ITOBA) along with Indiana Grand.

“Road to Louisville” is open to players both online and on-track at Indiana Grand and Clarksville OTB. Weekly and monthly prizes will be provided as points are cumulative throughout the event. The contest, which will include numerous races each week from select tracks, will be completed on Kentucky Derby Day to crown the overall winner of the $1,000 prize money and a chance to own a future Indiana racehorse.

“Our contests both online and on-track have become increasingly popular, and we wanted to do something to raise the stakes next season,” said Eric Halstrom, Vice President and General Manager of Racing. “After talking with ITOBA President Tom Mosley, we decided to partner with them on our current breeding and racing program, which is so lucrative right now. The idea was created to get one of our loyal racing fans involved with a hands-on ownership experience and enjoy a risk-free way to enjoy the thrill of Indiana Thoroughbred racing.”

If the winner opts in for the purchase of a yearling at the ITOBA Sale, they will receive up to $15,000 to purchase a yearling out of the sale, plus an additional $15,000 for care and training of the horse leading up to its racing debut in the summer of 2023. ITOBA is facilitating the details and assistance for the new owner and their new purchase.

“Road to Louisville” gets underway with the racing card from Gulfstream Park. Points are based on payouts for the selected horse in the contest races. Weekly prizes will be allotted to the top three players each week with the top handicapper receiving $150, second place receiving $100 and third place receiving $50. Prizes are doubled if the player is competing at either Indiana Grand or Clarksville OTB.

The post Indiana Grand Offers ‘Road to Louisville’ Contest appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Consignor, Pinhooker Jerry Bailey Passes Away at 78

Mon, 2021-12-20 13:43

Jerry Bailey, whose varied career in the sport included stints as a veterinarian, breeder, owner, pinhooker and consignor, passed away Dec. 17 due to complications from pneumonia after a bout with COVID-19. He was 78.

Bailey started out on the racetrack as a veterinarian and took a position as the resident veterinarian for E.K. Gaylord's Lazy E Ranch in Oklahoma, later adding the role of general manager to his duties.

He moved to Florida in the late eighties and partnered with Ken Ellenberg to start Bailey Ellenberg Select, a partnership that focused on pinhooking. Ellenberg and Bailey bought eventual 1995 Grade I Kentucky Derby winner Thunder Gulch (Gulch) for $40,000 at the Keeneland July yearling sale with the intent to sell him a year later. They had a $125,000 reserve on him at the Keeneland April sale as a 2-year-old, but the bidding stopped at $120,000. After selling a 50% interest in him to Howard Rozin, they campaigned Thunder Gulch through his first three career starts before selling him privately to Michael Tabor.

Bailey would later partner with Lance Robinson, and the two started Gulf Coast Farms. It was another pinhooking operation, but they also got involved in breeding. Their biggest success story as a breeder was Lookin at Lucky (Smart Strike). Consigned by Bailey, he was sold for $475,000 as a 2-year-old at the Keeneland April sale. The winner of the 2010 GI Preakness S., he was named champion 2-year-old in 2009 and champion 3-year-old in 2010.

Bailey was involved with many top horses over the years. He consigned Grade I winners Honour and Glory (Relaunch), Deputy Commander (Deputy Minister), Henny Hughes (Hennessy) and Dubai Escapade (Awesome Again). Dubai Escapade sold for $2 million at the 2004 Barretts 2-year-old sale.

About 10 years ago, Bailey retired from the Thoroughbred game and moved back to his native Oklahoma. While there, he focused on roping competitions.

“Roping to him was what golf is to others,” said his widow, Leslie. “He roped every day there was. He just won a roping competition about five days before he came up sick.

“He was most proud of our success in the Thoroughbred business, his ability to pick out an individual, an athlete, and all his achievements in roping.”

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Joseph Eyes Triple Crown Trail With Make It Big

Sun, 2021-12-19 17:49

Red Oak Stables' Make It Big (Neolithic) may have earned a position on the Kentucky Derby trail with his win in Friday's Remington Springboard Mile S. The Saffie Joseph, Jr. trainee accumulated 10 qualifying points to the Derby with his half-length victory over Osbourne (Tapiture) in Oklahoma.

“We are, obviously, very excited. He was stepping up in class, shipping for the first time and going two turns [for the first time]. He handled it all as good as you could ask for,” said Joseph. “He sat in the pocket, made a move down the backside, and was gutsy enough to hold off Osbourne.”

Make It Big, a $120,000 purchase at this year's OBS April sale, opened his career with an 8 1/2-length win against fellow Florida-breds at Gulfstream Oct. 9 and added a victory in the Oct. 30 Ocala Stud Juvenile Sprint–both at seven furlongs–before shipping to Remington Park.

“The [Feb 5 GIII] Holy Bull might come a little quick, but everything is still in play. Maybe, the [Mar. 5 GII Fasig-Tipton] Fountain of Youth,” Joseph said of possible next starts for Make It Big. “We'll talk it over with the ownership group and Rick Sacco, the stable manager. He was the one that recommended, after he won last time, that we should try this race [Springboard Mile]. It turned out a perfect choice of race.”

Joseph said he thinks Make It Big will handle longer distances.

“You would think the more distance the better. That's how he trained. Up until six weeks before he made his debut, he kind of seemed he'd go long, long, long,” Joseph said. “He was lacking that early speed. When we put blinkers on him, they gave him that dynamic, showing some speed. We already knew he had the stamina. He's really turned around.”

Joseph also trains Triple Crown prospect White Abarrio (Race Day), who captured his first two races impressively before finishing third in the Nov. 27 GII Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs.

“He's doing well. We gave him a little freshening,” Joseph said of the colt who worked three furlongs in :36.00 (3/11) at Gulfstream Sunday. “He's most likely going in the Holy Bull.”

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Nevin Taking Her Time With Happy Medium

Sun, 2021-12-19 15:23

Jay Em Ess Stable's Happy Medium (Runhappy) equaled his career-best 103 Beyer Speed Figure for 'TDN Rising Star'-worthy allowance victory (video) at Aqueduct Saturday. Happy Medium has gone 3-for-4 this year, his only loss coming in his debut where he finished third going seven furlongs at Aqueduct in March.

“He's doing all the right things,” trainer Michelle Nevin said of the sophomore. “We're very happy with him and we are taking each logical step as he's gone along and he's really shown up.”

Happy Medium earned his first 103 Beyer with a 9 1/4-length maiden special weight victory at Belmont in his second start. He followed with a five-length victory over a sloppy and sealed main track at Aqueduct Nov. 13.

Nevin said Happy Medium's effort Saturday was the best of his career.

“Yesterday, he looked more in control of the race every step of the way,” Nevin said. “When he broke his maiden, he did it easily, but it maybe didn't look as impressive as yesterday.”

Looking ahead for Happy Medium, Nevin said, “We'll just get past this, get back to training, and see how we are and then we'll make our decisions down the road a little bit. We're going to have to see how he comes out of this race. It was a huge effort, so I'm not in a rush to pick a spot. Once I feel like he's back on his feet again, we'll see what's available to us.”

The post Nevin Taking Her Time With Happy Medium appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Doswell Does It in Ft. Lauderdale

Sat, 2021-12-18 19:04

Joseph Allen homebred Doswell (Giant's Causeway) hadn't seen the inside of a winner's circle since October 2020, however, marked his return with aplomb, scoring by a front-running, 1 1/2-length margin over longshot Atone (Into Mischief) in Saturday's GII Ft. Lauderdale S. at Gulfstream.

Sent to the front by Junior Alvarado straight away, the 9-2 shot showed the way as the stalking duo of GSW Analyze It (Point of Entry) and English Bee (English Channel) kept him in their sights. Still in front and moving well with a half mile left to negotiate, Doswell ramped up the tempo as 17-1 chance Atone burst on the scene approaching the quarter pole, spurted clear in early stretch and finished up with good energy late to win. English Bee held on for third, only a half-length adrift of the runner up.

“He broke good, I put him on the engine a little bit and then tried to slow him down, and he rated kindly for me,” said Alvarado. “When we turned for home, I asked him and he gave me a nice kick. I knew they were in trouble as soon as I started asking him, because he picked it up very quickly and I thought they'd have to be flying at the end to go by.”

A front-running victor in a Belmont allowance in October 2020, the dark bay finished runner up in this race last December before coming home third in the GIII W. L. McKnight S. in January. Sidelined after that effort, he didn't return to racing for nine months before running third in back-to-back optional claiming allowances Oct. 21 at Belmont and most recently, at Aqueduct Nov. 19.

“It was nice and easy,” added Alvarado of Saturday's effort. “Last year, they kind of told me to try to see if he would stalk to make sure he would finish strong, and we kind of took away his main [weapon]. Today, they told me, 'You're in the one [post], just leave out of there rolling,' and that's what I did.”

And is the GI Pegasus World Cup Turf in January in the cards for the 6-year-old?

“We're thinking about it. We'll probably go in it,” said winning trainer Barclay Tagg. “We'll see how he comes out of this. We'll see if he freshens up and if he's got [good] energy. I don't want to take him over there and just make a fool out of him if we can help it.”

Pedigree Notes:

The late, great Giant's Causeway, gone since the spring of 2018, continues to churn out stakes winners. The classy chestnut stood the whole of his career at Coolmore locations around the globe, but had his greatest success as a stallion during his longstanding engagement in Kentucky. The 6-year-old Doswell became the 164th Northern Hemisphere-foaled black-type winner for his sire and the 98th graded.

In contrast to Giant's Causeway was Doswell's broodmare sire Minardi, who was also a European champion raced by Coolmore connections, but hardly took the stallion ranks by storm. From 11 crops, he managed only three stakes winners from Malaysia to Europe, with Doswell's dam his only black-type winner in a major racing country (France). Doswell is the fourth black-type winner out of a daughter of Minardi. Doswell's half-brother Secretary At War (War Front) is one of the others.

In addition to her two stakes-winning sons, Ballet Pacifica has Grade III-placed Entrechat, a full-sister to Doswell, and a placed juvenile full-brother to Secretary At War named Fort Ticonderoga. Her yearling filly is named You're the Top (Into Mischief) and she visited both War Front and Not This Time for next term. Ballet Pacifica is out of Irish champion, three-time U.S. GISW, and $1.05-million broodmare Kostroma (Ire), making Ballet Pacifica a half to 2008 GI Santa Anita Oaks winner Ariege (Doneraile Court).

Saturday, Gulfstream Park
FT. LAUDERDALE S.-GII, $200,000, Gulfstream, 12-18, 3yo/up,
1 1/8mT, 1:45.60, fm.
1–DOSWELL, 121, g, 6, by Giant's Causeway
                1st Dam: Ballet Pacifica (SW & GSP-Fr, GSP-USA,
                $120,100), by Minardi
                2nd Dam: Kostroma (Ire), by Caerleon
                3rd Dam: Katie May (GB), by Busted (GB)
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN.
O/B-Joseph Allen LLC (KY); T-Barclay Tagg; J-Junior Alvarado.
$115,320. Lifetime Record: 12-3-5-3, $314,621. Werk Nick
Rating: B. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross
pedigree.*Full to Entrechat, GSP, $170,730; 1/2 to Secretary
At War (War Front), SW & GSP, $382,754.
2–Atone, 121, g, 4, Into Mischief–Captivating Lass, by A.P.
Indy. 1ST BLACK TYPE, 1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE. ($130,000
4yo '21 FTKHRA). O-Three Diamonds Farm; B-Godolphin
(KY); T-Michael J. Maker. $37,200.
3–English Bee, 121, h, 5, English Channel–Evil Kitten, by
Kitten's Joy. O/B-Calumet Farm (KY); T-H. Graham Motion.
$18,600.
Margins: 1HF, HF, 1 3/4. Odds: 4.50, 17.90, 21.20.
Also Ran: Space Traveller (GB), L'Imperator (Fr), Sole Volante, Renaisance Frolic, Breaking the Rules, Order and Law, Media Blitz, Analyze It, King Guillermo. Scratched: Brown Storm (Chi).
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Ghostzapper Gelding Shows No Fear in Harlan’s Holiday

Sat, 2021-12-18 18:26

Repole Stable's Fearless (Ghostzapper) ran to the money as the 3-5 chalk in Saturday's GIII Harlan's Holiday S., the local prep for the upcoming $3-million GI Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Jan. 29.

Drawn widest of all in post six, he tracked a pair of dueling leaders in a dream spot in third as they made their way up the backstretch. This term's GII WinStar Gulfstream Park Mile S. Feb. 27 winner revved up three wide rounding the far turn, kicked for home as the one to catch and took care of business from there to score by a facile four lengths over South Bend (Algorithms). The pacesetting dual Canadian Classic winner Mighty Heart (Dramedy) was third.

Trained throughout his career by Todd Pletcher, Mike Repole purchased Fearless, previously a $725,000 KEESEP yearling, for $205,000 at this summer's Fasig-Tipton July Selected Horses of Racing Age Sale following a second-place finish behind next out GI Hill 'N' Dale Metropolitan H. winner Silver State (Hard Spun) in the GII Oaklawn H. Apr. 17 and a third-place finish as the favorite in the GIII Pimlico Special Match Series S. May 14. He resurfaced with a second-place finish as the chalk once again in his first start for Repole in a local $60,000 handicap Nov. 21. Fearless previously carried the colors of CHC Inc. and WinStar Farm.

Will we see Fearless next in the Pegasus?

“That's all up to Todd,” Pletcher's assistant trainer Anthony Sciametta said. “The horse is moving forward. He's run two good races and come back good from his vacation. That's all we can ask for.”

Pletcher was not present at Gulfstream Saturday due to family obligations.

Pedigree Notes:

Fearless is one of 89 stakes/48 graded winners for Hall of Famer Ghostzapper. He is also one of 102 stakes/53 graded winners for the late Street Cry as a broodmare sire.

Fearless's dam And Why Not, who hit the board over seven furlongs as a juvenile in the 2011 GI Spinaway S. and over 10 panels in the 2013 GI Delaware H., hails from one of the deepest families in the stud book.

Second dam is GSP Alchemist, in turn the dam of GSW Far From Over (Blame), and GISW third dam Aldiza produced one graded winner and the dams of two others. Fearless's fifth dam is none other than 1983 Broodmare of the Year Courtly Dee (Never Bend).

And Why Not has an unraced 2-year-old filly named Marzipan (Candy Ride {Arg}) and a yearling filly by Blame ($500,000 KEESEP purchase by Juddmonte). She was bred to Gun Runner for 2022.

Saturday, Gulfstream
HARLAN'S HOLIDAY S.-GIII, $150,000, Gulfstream, 12-18, 3yo/up, 1 1/16m, 1:42.19, ft.
1–FEARLESS, 123, g, 5, by Ghostzapper
               1st Dam: And Why Not (MGISP, $262,965), by Street Cry (Ire)
                2nd Dam: Alchemist, by A.P. Indy
                3rd Dam: Aldiza, by Storm Cat
($725,000 Ylg '17 KEESEP; $120,000 RNA 4yo '20 FTKHRA;
$205,000 5yo '21 FTKHRA). O-Repole Stable; B-Helen K.
Groves Revocable Trust (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher; J-Luis Saez.
$92,070. Lifetime Record: 11-5-3-1, $576,550. Werk Nick
Rating: A+. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
*1/2 to Just Whistle (Pioneerof the Nile), SW & MGSP,
$260,865.
2–South Bend, 121, c, 4, Algorithms–Sandra's Rose, by Old
Trieste. ($47,000 RNA Ylg '18 FTKJUL; $70,000 2yo '19
OBSMAR). O-Gary Barber, Wachtel Stable, Peter Deutsch,
& Pantofel Stable, LLC; B-Highclere Inc. (KY); T-William I.
Mott. $29,700.
3–Mighty Heart, 126, c, 4, Dramedy–Emma's Bullseye, by
City Place. O/B-Lawrence Cordes (ON); T-Josie Carroll.
$14,850.
Margins: 4, 1 1/4, 7 1/4. Odds: 0.60, 6.20, 2.30.
Also Ran: Blue Steel, Twenty Twice, Eye of a Jedi.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Into Mischief Fillies Put on a Show in Sugar Swirl

Sat, 2021-12-18 17:20

Center Aisle (Into Mischief) and 'TDN Rising Star' Frank's Rockette (Into Mischief) ran hard every step of the way in Saturday's six-furlong GIII Sugar Swirl S. at Gulfstream, and, after throwing down in the stretch, it was the former coming away with a hard-fought, one-length victory for a career high.

Perched four-wide beneath Luis Saez as four of them lined up–including favored MGSW & MGISP Frank's Rockette who was racing under fire in between runners–through an opening quarter in a sharp :21.72, Center Aisle poked a head in front approaching the quarter pole.

The classy duo emerged clear from the field of eight as they straightened for home, and, after putting on a nice show down the lane, the 2-1 second-choice Center Aisle edged clear late from her ultra-game rival in a race that didn't deserve a loser.

Center Aisle, a sharp debut winner at Gulfstream for Chad Brown last March, completed the trifecta behind Frank's Rockette in last term's GIII Victory Ride S. at Belmont as well as the GII Prioress S. at Saratoga. Transferred to Paulo Lobo for her 4-year-old campaign, the bay scored in front-running fashion in her first two tries this season–a sloppy Keeneland allowance Oct. 15 over a next-out winner and an optional claimer at Churchill Downs last time Nov. 20, respectively.

Lobo said that the plan is to send Center Aisle back to Kentucky for a freshening before returning to South Florida for the seven-furlong GII Inside Information S. at Gulfstream Jan. 29.

“She was coming into this race ready from two very nice races,” Lobo said. “She's a very special mare. I think she has a bright future. I felt good because the body language of Saez, she looked very comfortable outside and when they came home, my feeling was very good.”

Saez added, “The other filly was running pretty fast. But I had a lot of horse, and we came to the top of the stretch, she gave me another kick. At that point, we knew we had horse to fight, and she did it. She did it pretty impressively.”

Pedigree Notes:

Center Aisle, a $1.5-million FTFMAR purchase by Larry Best's OXO Equine and the highest-priced filly out of that sale after breezing a quarter in a powerful :20 3/5, becomes the 105th stakes winner/46th graded stakes winner for her all-conquering sire Into Mischief. She becomes the 65th stakes winner/29th graded winner for her late broodmare sire Empire Maker.

The Into Mischief/Empire Maker cross is also responsible for GI TVG.com Haskell S. winner via disqualification and GI Kentucky Derby runner-up Mandaloun.

Juddmonte homebred Specification, a maiden of two career starts, produced a colt by Goldencents this year and was bred back to Vino Rosso.

The winner's dam is a half-sister to dual GI Pacific Classic winner Skimming (Nureyev). She is out of five-time graded stakes victress Skimble (Lyphard).

Specification was a $37,000 Keeneland November purchase by Todd and Shawn Hansen in 2017 when followed into the ring by then-weanling Center Aisle.

Saturday, Gulfstream
SUGAR SWIRL S.-GIII, $100,000, Gulfstream, 12-18, 3yo/up, f/m, 6f, 1:09.54, ft.
1–CENTER AISLE, 120, f, 4, by Into Mischief
                1st Dam: Specification, by Empire Maker
                2nd Dam: Skimble, by Lyphard
                3rd Dam: Nimble Folly, by Cyane
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($165,000
Wlg '17 KEENOV; $450,000 Ylg '18 KEESEP; $1,500,000 2yo
'19 FTFMAR). O-OXO Equine LLC; B-Breffni Farm (KY);
T-Paulo H. Lobo; J-Luis Saez. $60,140. Lifetime Record:
8-4-0-3, $263,190. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Frank's Rockette, 122, f, 4, Into Mischief–Rocket
Twentyone, by Indian Charlie. 'TDN Rising Star' O-Frank
Fletcher Racing Operations, Inc.; B-Frank Fletcher (KY);
T-William I. Mott. $19,400.
3–Bronx Beauty, 120, m, 6, Liaison–Forever Sunshine, by
Rockport Harbor. ($250,000 6yo '21 KEENOV). O-Breeze
Easy, LLC; B-Blackstone Farm LLC (PA); T-Anthony R.
Margotta, Jr. $9,700.
Margins: 1, 5, 2. Odds: 2.10, 1.10, 6.40.
Also Ran: Music City Star, Loriloupies, Sosua, Quinoa Tifah, Compensate. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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American Pharoah’s Sweet Melania Ends Drought in Suwannee River

Sat, 2021-12-18 15:11

Robert and Lawana Low's Sweet Melania (American Pharoah), without a victory in 18 months, broke through to record her first win of the 2021 season in Saturday's GIII Suwannee River S. at Gulfstream.

She jumped well from her outside draw in post 10 to chase from second as favored Shifty She (Gone Astray) sped off on a clear advantage. Sweet Melania, off at 6-1, set her sights on the pacesetter beneath John Velazquez at the top of the stretch, hit the front shortly thereafter and had a half-length over that game foe at the wire. It was another half-length back to In a Hurry (Blame) in third.

Sweet Melania, heroine of the 2019 GII JPMorgan Chase Jessamine S. at Keeneland and 2020 GIII Wonder Again S. at Belmont and also the third-place finisher in the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita, was winless in five prior tries this season. She hit the board in her three most recent attempts, including a second-place finish in the One Dreamer S. at Kentucky Downs Sept. 9 and another runner-up effort in a Keeneland allowance last time Oct. 15. The chestnut hadn't had her picture taken since the Wonder Again last June.

“She was super sharp coming into it,” winning trainer Todd Pletcher said. “I loved the way she was training and she got a beautiful ride from Johnny. It was a good setup, and I thought she ran a good race. I felt like she had been rounding back into form and had some good performances and just didn't quite get there. She did seem super sharp, and we were hoping for an improved performance.”

Pletcher added that Sweet Melania would be under consideration for the $500,000 GIIII Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf Jan. 29.

Pedigree Notes:

Sweet Melania, a $600,000 KEESEP graduate, is one of 23 stakes winners and 12 graded winners from Triple Crown winner American Pharoah. She is one of 12 stakes winners and three graded winners for broodmare sire Discreet Cat.

The E. Paul Robsham-bred SW & GSP Sweet N Discreet did not produce a foal in 2018 and her 2019 Carpe Diem filly died. She had a Liam's Map colt in 2020 ($200,000 KEESEP purchase by Jackpot Farm) and a filly by American Pharoah this year. She was bred back to Tapit.

Sweet N Discreet, a $1.1-million purchase by Crupi's New Castle Farm on behalf of Sweet Melania's breeder St. Elias Stables at the 2014 FTKNOV sale, brought $1.6 million from Mt. Brilliant Farm, in foal to Liam's Map, at Fasig-Tipton November in 2019.

Sweet N Discreet is a full-sister to GSW and GISP Discreet Dancer and a half to GSW Travelin Man (Trippi).

Saturday, Gulfstream
SUWANNEE RIVER S.-GIII, $100,000, Gulfstream, 12-18, 3yo/up, f/m, 1mT, :00.00, fm.
1–SWEET MELANIA, 121, f, 4, by American Pharoah
                1st Dam: Sweet N Discreet (SW & GSP, $366,447), by Discreet Cat
                2nd Dam: West Side Dancer, by Gone West
                3rd Dam: Bering Cruise, by Danzig
   ($600,000 Ylg '18 KEESEP). O-Lawana L. & Robert E. Low;
B-St. Elias Stables, LLC (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher; J-John R.
Velazquez. $57,660. Lifetime Record: GISP, 15-4-4-4,
$571,210. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus* Click for
   the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Shifty She, 125, m, 5, Gone Astray–Perilous Hope, by
Strong Hope. O-Pedigree Partners LLC; B-Chris Pallas &
George Klein (FL); T-Saffie A. Joseph, Jr. $18,600.
3–In a Hurry, 121, f, 4, Blame–Scampering, by Afleet Alex.
1ST BLACK TYPE, 1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE. O/B-Stuart S.
Janney, III LLC (KY); T-Claude R. McGaughey III. $9,300.
Margins: HF, HF, 2HF. Odds: 6.80, 2.30, 5.90.
Also Ran: Keeper of Time (Ire), Summering, Kelsey's Cross, Alms, Dawn's Dancer, Princess Causeway, Classic Lady, Quiet Company, La Babia.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Runhappy Gelding Runs up the Score Again; Garners Rising Stardom

Sat, 2021-12-18 14:39

Jay Em Ess Stable's Happy Medium (Runhappy) dominated for a third consecutive time Saturday to become the third 'TDN Rising Star' for the heating-up Runhappy. Third in his seven-panel unveiling here back in March, the $300,000 KEESEP yearling and May 20 foal resurfaced at Belmont Sept. 30 to air by 9 1/4 lengths and earn a gaudy 103 Beyer Speed Figure. He was flattered when three runners who finished behind him that day returned to graduate, and further validated his big win with a five-length allowance score in the local slop Nov. 13.

Off at 3-5 this time taking on older and far more seasoned rivals, the bay was scrubbed on from the rail to rush up and take command. He was able to clear off and settle a bit through splits of :22.14 and :45.05, and was all by his lonesome as he swung for home with a sizeable advantage. Wudda U Think Now (Fast Anna)–a four-time winner coming off a career-best 94 Beyer–gave chase in the lane, but Happy Medium strolled home in a race of his own to report under the wire a wrapped-up seven-length winner in 1:15.88.

Happy Medium's score comes on the heels of an impressive victory by Runhappy's juvenile 'Rising Star' Smile Happy in the Nov. 27 GII Kentucky Jockey Club S. and a close second in the GI Cigar Mile H. here Dec. 4 by Grade II winner and MGISP 'Rising Star' Following Sea.

The winner is half to Mendip (Harlan's Holiday), MGSW-UAE, $895,961; Paddle Board (Harlan's Holiday), GSP, $183,774; Dig Deep (Candy Ride (ARG)), SW, $125,600; and a yearling filly by Practical Joke. His 20-year-old dam, who is a daughter of MGISW Chaposa Springs (Baldski), was bred to Mastery for 2022. Breeder Richard Santulli's Colts Neck Stable was recently represented as co-breeder of both the GII Demoiselle S. and GII Remsen S. winners here.

4th-Aqueduct, $84,000, Alw (NW2$X)/Opt. Clm ($62,500), 12-18, 3yo/up, 6 1/2f, 1:15.88, ft, 7 lengths.
HAPPY MEDIUM, g, 3, Runhappy
                1st Dam: Well Spring, by Coronado's Quest
                2nd Dam: Chaposa Springs, by Baldski
                3rd Dam: La Chaposa (Per), by Ups (Per)
Lifetime Record: 4-3-0-1, $150,400. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-Jay Em Ess Stable; B-Colts Neck Stables LLC (KY); T-Michelle Nevin. *$300,000 Ylg '19 KEESEP.

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Jim McKay Maryland Million Day Set for Oct. 22

Sat, 2021-12-18 13:27

The 37th edition of Jim McKay Maryland Million Day will take place Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022, at Laurel Park.

Jim McKay Maryland Million Day is designed to promote Maryland stallions, whose offspring compete in the races with purses and awards of over $1 million each year.

“We as an industry have been through a lot but we also have a lot to look forward to. Maryland has continuously worked to bring a new wave of quality stallions into the state and that effort would not be possible without the breeders and horsemen who support them,” said Louis Merryman, president of Maryland Million Ltd. and owner of Anchor & Hope Farm in Port Deposit, Md. “Maryland Million day serves as a showcase for our farms and the horsemen that work so hard.”

The 2021 running of Maryland's Day at the Races marked a return to relative normalcy, after the previous year's event was run under COVID-19 restrictions, which limited spectator attendance. Enthusiastic participation by horsemen resulted in full fields and a handle figure over $6.5 million.

“We are looking forward to an even better event in 2022, with more fans and more fun,” said Cricket Goodall, executive director of Maryland Million Ltd. “We are proud that Jim McKay Maryland Million Day caps off Maryland Horse Month in October, which celebrates all of the diverse horse activities we have here.”

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Feds, Fishman Spar in Bail Revocation Hearing

Fri, 2021-12-17 18:31

Federal prosecutors and the legal team for Seth Fishman continue to spar over allegations by the government that the indicted Florida veterinarian should have his bail revoked for allegedly still selling purportedly performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) while awaiting trial in the international racehorse doping conspiracy case.

The latest legal salvo, fired Dec. 17 by prosecutors in the form of a letter, comes three days before Fishman's Dec. 20 bail revocation hearing in United States District Court (Southern District of New York).

This latest plot twist in the case began Dec. 6, when prosecutors told the judge that Fishman's administrative assistant permitted Federal Bureau of Investigation agents to search her workplace, and the search allegedly yielded evidence that Fishman is still selling drugs.

One week later, Fishman replied with a court filing of his own that stated that employee “had little choice but to succumb to the demand by agents that they be permitted to search the premises” because at the time her consent to the search was obtained “she was at risk of prosecution for the very offenses with which Dr. Fishman was charged.”

Friday's new filing made three points:

“First, Fishman attempts to justify his continued manufacture of drugs by claiming a 'good faith' effort to meet the requirements of the 'export exemption' set forth in 21 U.S.C. § 381(e),” the Dec. 17 filing stated.

“Second, the defendant suggests that the Government has implicitly condoned his ongoing criminal activity insofar as Fishman and/or his former counsel have claimed that Fishman holds an intention to continue his drug sales in conformity with the foreign sales exemption of 21 U.S.C. § 381(e),” the filing stated.

“Finally, the Government notes that Fishman points to no authority for the proposition that a proffering witness cannot provide voluntary consent to a search,” the filing stated.

Fishman is charged with two felony counts related to drug alteration, misbranding, and conspiring to defraud the government. His trial is tentatively expected to start in mid-January.

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Harry Benson Passes Away

Fri, 2021-12-17 18:08

Trainer Harry Benson, former president of the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Association (FHBPA) and a multiple graded stakes-winning trainer, passed away Friday morning at age 90. Funeral services are pending.

Benson saddled more than 500 winners over his six-decade career, including MGSW Proud Man. As president of the FHBPA, Benson was passionate regarding winter race dates between Gulfstream and Hialeah Park and led several caravans to Tallahassee to protest bills regarding Thoroughbred issues.

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Mahoning Valley Raises Purses 10%

Fri, 2021-12-17 14:37

Mahoning Valley Race Course raised purses 10%, effective Dec. 21. This is the second increase of the year. “We have had a good year here at Mahoning Valley, setting several handle records along the way,” comments Elizabeth Rogers, Assistant Director of Racing, “the timing of this increase will help us set the stage for an even better 2022.”

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