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TTA 2YO Sale Sees Increases in Average, Median

Thu, 2022-04-07 10:11

Wednesday's Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA) 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale closed with an uptick in average and median, as well as gross. A total of 88 horses sold for $3,050,700 with an average of $34,667, up from an average of $32,671 in 2021. The median also rose to $28,000, compared to $20,000 in 2021.

“We're obviously thrilled to see such strong trade in our 2-year-old market,” said TTA sales director Foster Bridewell. “We can't thank the owners and consignors enough for sending us quality horses to sell and we're fortunate that so many buyers showed up in a big way. I think it's a sign of just how strong racing is in Texas, thanks to the increased purses and incentives for owners and breeders.”

The sales topper was a Free Drop Billy filly, who sold for $200,000. Consigned by Carl Deville, the Louisiana-bred is out of Solo Buena (Half Ours) and had worked in :10.2 at Monday's under tack show. Mansfield Racing purchased the bay, who hails from the extended family of champion Blushing John (Blushing Groom {Fr}). The top-priced colt at $125,000 was by McCraken out of Conjuress (Indian Charlie), who also worked in :10.2 and was also purchased by Mansfield Racing. Pike Racing, agent, who consigned the Kentucky-bred colt, was the leading consigner at the sale with total sales of $664,000.

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Ken McPeek Talks Derby Hopefuls Tiz the Bomb, Smile Happy On Writers’ Room

Wed, 2022-04-06 16:09

Housing as many as three GI Kentucky Derby starters in his barn, trainer Kenny McPeek joined the TDN Writers' Room presented by Keeneland as the Green Group Guest of the Week Tuesday to discuss Tiz the Bomb (Hit It a Bomb)'s dirt prospects and potential summer European campaign, his plan for likely GI Toyota Blue Grass S. favorite Smile Happy (Runhappy) to run in all three Triple Crown races, his thoughts on the continuing phase-out of Lasix in American racing and more.

Tiz the Bomb, a dual stakes winner and GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile turf runner-up at two, bounced back from a seventh-place run in Gulfstream's GIII Holy Bull S. to sweep a pair of synthetic-track stakes at Turfway, and will head to Louisville after being considered for a start at Newmarket in the Apr. 30 G1 2000 Guineas.

“When we ran him in Florida, the colt didn't handle the Gulfstream surface and the kickback,” McPeek said. “That surface is a little bit different, it's deep, sand-based and he just didn't go for it. I sent him to Turfway to get his confidence back in the [John] Battaglia and that worked out. So the natural next step was the Jeff Ruby and he punched, and ran a super race. I actually felt like he would be a great horse to take over for the 2000 Guineas, and the undulation of Newmarket wasn't any harder or actually could be easier than his victory at Kentucky Downs [in the Kentucky Downs Mile S.]. But due to some logistics and technicalities, he's not going to go, and our next option is either a turf race at Churchill or the Kentucky Derby. I really think at this point, the horse probably deserves a chance.”

As for Smile Happy, a no-doubt Derby contender who will make just his second start as a 3-year-old in Saturday's Blue Grass after a runner-up effort in the GII Risen Star S., McPeek said, “This is a really special colt. I've been sitting on this horse like a keg of dynamite for months now. I didn't want more than two preps going into the Kentucky Derby. I think the [Derby qualifying] points he got in Louisiana will more than likely get him in. I want to see him run well in the Blue Grass, obviously, and being a Lexington boy, it's always fun to win the Blue Grass. I didn't want to over-race this horse this winter. I really sat on him for a reason, because I think he's a horse that can handle the progression of the Derby, Preakness and Belmont. And you've got to have some juice in the tank for those races. If you're already a little tired or you've overdone it going into those three races, obviously your horse is going to be taxed. But he could set up really well for those.”

Elsewhere on the show, which is also sponsored by Coolmore, the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders' Association, XBTV, West Point Thoroughbreds and Legacy Bloodstock, the writers reacted to Secret Oath (Arrogate)'s valiant but losing performance in the GI Arkansas Derby, the beginning of Bob Baffert's 90-day suspension and the latest shenanigans surrounding banned trainer Wayne Potts. Click here to watch the podcast; click here for the audio-only version or find it on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

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Monmouth Park Adds Two Live Sunday Race Dates in September

Wed, 2022-04-06 13:11

Monmouth Park has added two live racing dates on Sundays in September to extend the 2022 meet to 62 days following approval from the New Jersey Racing Commission.

Sept. 11 and Sept. 18 – the new closing day — are the added live dates, with stakes races highlighting both cards. The $85,000 Pinot Grigio S. will headline the Sept. 11 card, with the $85,000 Joey P. S. set for Sept. 18. Both are for New Jersey-breds at five furlongs on the turf.

Monmouth Park's 77th season gets underway on Saturday, May 7.

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Fasig-Tipton Offers Fox Hill Flash Sale

Wed, 2022-04-06 12:27

Fasig-Tipton's new digital platform is currently hosting online bidding for the “Fox Hill Flash Sale,” a one-horse online auction for Fox Hill Farms, Inc.-owned Sweet Tea (Into Mischief). The 4-year-old filly, who broke her maiden at Oaklawn Park in January for trainer Larry Jones, is consigned as a broodmare prospect by Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent. Out of Ava Pie (Distorted Humor), she is a half-sister to stakes winner and graded-placed Forever Liesl (Mineshaft) and a full-sister to multiple stakes winner and multiple graded placed Sound Machine.

“The Fox Hill Flash Sale gives us the opportunity to showcase the versatility of the Fasig-Tipton Digital platform,” said Leif Aaron, Fasig-Tipton Director of Digital Sales. “Sweet Tea is a quality broodmare prospect that should appeal to those actively looking for a filly to breed this year off the racetrack. We are pleased that we can put our digital platform to work for one of Fasig-Tipton's longtime supporters in Fox Hill Farms.”

Bidding on the flash sale, available at digital.fasigtipton.com, will conclude Friday at 2 p.m. EDT.

In addition, Fasig-Tipton continues to accept nominations for its second digital sale, which will be held Apr. 21-26.

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Weekly Rulings: March 29-April 4

Wed, 2022-04-06 11:19

Every week, the TDN publishes a roundup of key official rulings from the primary tracks within the four major racing jurisdictions of California, New York, Florida and Kentucky.

Here's a primer on how each of these jurisdictions adjudicates different offenses, what they make public (or not) and where.

CALIFORNIA
Track: Santa Anita
Date: 04/02/2022
Licensee: Bob Baffert, trainer
Penalty: Ninety-day suspension
Violation: Reciprocity of out-of-state medication violation penalty
Explainer: Pursuant to California Horse Racing Board rule #1484 (Evidence of Unfitness for License) the following ruling is issued in reciprocity after receiving notice of suspension from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, ruling (21-0009) dated February 21, 2022, issuing Trainer/Owner Robert Baffert ninety suspension days. Robert Baffert is suspended for 90 days (April 4, 2022, through and including July 2, 2022).

Track: Santa Anita
Date: 04/02/2022
Licensee: Mario Gutierrez, jockey
Penalty: Three-day suspension
Violation: Careless riding
Explainer: Jockey Mario Gutierrez, who rode ARDIS in the fourth race at Santa Anita Park on April 1, 2022, is suspended for 3 racing days (April 9, 10 and 15, 2022) for failure to make the proper effort to maintain a straight course in the stretch, causing interference which resulted in the disqualification of his mount from second to third place. This constitutes a violation of California Horse Racing Board rule #1699 (Riding Rules – Careless Riding). Pursuant to California Horse Racing Board rule #1766 (Designated Races), the term of suspension shall not prohibit participation in designated races.

Track: Santa Anita
Date: 04/03/2022
Licensee: Jonathan Wong, trainer
Penalty: $400 fine
Violation: Late registration of Lasix
Explainer: Trainer Jonathan Wong is fined $400.00 for violation of California Horse Racing Board rule #1845 (Authorized Bleeder Medication – late registration) of My Kentucky Girl in the eighth race on April 2, 2022, at Santa Anita Park.

Track: Santa Anita
Date: 04/03/2022
Licensee: Ryan Curatolo, jockey
Penalty: $750 fine
Violation: Excessive use of the whip
Explainer: Jockey Ryan Curatolo is fined $750.00 for violation of California Horse Racing Board rule #1688(b)(8)(d) (Use of Riding Crop–more than six times–second offense within the past sixty days) during the third race at Santa Anita Park on April 2, 2022.

Track: Santa Anita
Date: 04/03/2022
Licensee: Diego Herrera, apprentice jockey
Penalty: $500 fine
Violation: Excessive use of the whip
Explainer: Apprentice Jockey Diego Herrera is fined $500.00 for violation of California Horse Racing Board rule #1688(b)(8)(d) (Use of Riding Crop – more than six times) during the ninth race at Santa Anita Park on April 2, 2022.

NEW YORK
Track: Aqueduct
Date: 04/03/2022
Licensee: Kendrick Carmouche, jockey
Penalty: Three-day suspension
Violation: Careless riding
Explainer: For having waived his right to appeal Jockey Kendrick Carmouche is hereby suspended three NYRA racing days April 14th 2022, April 15th 2022, April 16th 2022 inclusive. This for careless riding during the running of the eight race at Aqueduct racetrack on March 31st 2022. Suspended: 04/14/2022 to 04/16/2022 (3 days).

Track: Aqueduct
Date: 04/03/2022
Licensee: Wayne Potts, trainer
Penalty: Forty five-day suspension
Violation: Discovery of non-FDA approved drug on trainer grounds
Explainer: Trainer Mr. Wayne Potts for having waived his right to appeal is hereby suspended 45 calendar days April 10th 2022, through May 6th 2022 inclusive, and again June 6th through June 23rd 2022 inclusive, due to a previous ruling (suspension) handed down by the New Jersey Racing Commission. This for the finding of a drug in your tackroom that has not been approved by the FDA for use in Thoroughbred horses. Ordered that during your period of suspension, you shall not directly nor indirectly participate in New York State pari-mutuel horse racing. You are denied the privileges and use of the grounds for all racetracks in New York State. You are forbidden to participate in any share of purses or other payments. Every horse is denied the privileges of the grounds and shall not participate in pari-mutuel racing in New York State, that is (a) owned or trained by you, or by individuals who serves as your agent or employee during your suspension; or (b) for which you during your suspension are directly or indirectly with training, including any arrangements to care for, train, enter, race, invoice, collect fees or other payments, manage funds, employ or insure workers, provide advice or other information or otherwise assist with any aspect of the training of such horses. Suspended: 04/10/2022 to 06/23/2022 (45 days).
Read more about the issue here.

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War of Will Syndicate Partners with UK Football’s Will Levis

Wed, 2022-04-06 10:55

The syndicate that owns MGISW War of Will (War Front), who stands at Claiborne Farm and whose first foals are arriving this year, has entered into a partnership agreement with the University of Kentucky (UK)'s starting quarterback Will Levis. The agreement, which was announced by Sports Management Company Athlete Advantage, is an N.I.L. (Name, Image, and Likeness) deal.

“Will Levis loves racing,” said Claiborne's Walker Hancock. “He came out to the farm two weeks ago and he met War of Will. We filmed a commercial and that will be airing on FOX Sports this weekend on America's Day at the Races. He's going to do some social media posts and help promote the stallion. It's kind of a new approach. It's different. It's innovative. It's a different kind of way of looking at marketing. The name was obviously a big play as well. Kind of made perfect sense, with the University of Kentucky right here, and it has been a great partnership. He's awesome. He's a fierce competitor on the field, but in person, he's easy going, soft spoken, and nice to talk to.”

The agreement will consist of a multimedia advertising campaign that will center on the athleticism of both football players and racehorses. It represents the first N.I.L. deal for any collegiate student-athlete with a Thoroughbred syndicate.

Continued Hancock: “We are thrilled to be the first farm to partner with a Division I athlete in this newly created N.I.L. space. Having a star quarterback help promote one of our young and promising stallions is a new way of advertising that we think provides a perfect synergy of our brands. Will's athleticism and performance displayed on the football field mirrors what we saw with War of Will on the racetrack and the reason he is such an exciting stallion prospect.”

War of Will, best known for his GI Preakness S. win after being impeded with in the GI Kentucky Derby and praised for his athleticism for staying on his feet, also won a number of other graded races, including the GI Maker's Mark Mile on the turf.

From Connecticut, Levis threw for over 2,820 yards last year and is attributed with 24 touchdowns. He was part of UK's second win in the VRBO Citrus Bowl and one of the school's most successful seasons on record.

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$4-Million Bonus On the Line for MyRacehorse Forbidden Kingdom Owners

Wed, 2022-04-06 10:02

Forbidden Kingdom (American Pharaoh), one of the favorites in Saturday's GI Santa Anita Derby, stands to earn a $4-million stallion bonus for his connections if he wins. The “Future Stallion Bonus” is an incentive for selected MyRacehorse-owned horses to earn connections financial benefits if they win a Grade I event on the dirt in the U.S.

“We selected a few really well-bred colts and attached a pre-payment of potential stallion value as a way of providing a more immediate financial return for winning a Grade I,” said Michael Behrens, Founder and CEO of MyRacehorse.

The Future Stallion Bonus was built off an idea of the late B. Wayne Hughes, whose Spendthrift Farm owns 49% of Forbidden Kingdom. MyRacehorse has the other 51% of the horse. As part of the initial offering, MyRacehorse offered 1,020 shares of the horse to investors for $229 each. The stallion bonus amounts to an early payment of $2,040,000 for the 51% owned by MyRacehorse and will be distributed pro rata to the nearly 500 MyRacehorse partners in on the colt. The revenue per share tied to the bonus would be $2,000. The pre-payment will be paid back from the proceeds of a future stallion/breeding deal.

“Most partners get involved in racehorse ownership for the joy, excitement, and thrill of owning an elite racehorse, but of course we all hold out hope of a healthy financial return. This bonus would be the first realization of the potential stallion value of Forbidden Kingdom and another chapter in this remarkable journey,” said Chris Ransom, MyRacehorse's head of finance.

Forbidden Kingdom has won three of his five career starts and remains undefeated as a sophomore. His black-type wins include the Mar. 5 GII San Felipe S. and the Jan. 29 GII San Vicente S., both at Santa Anita. He is trained by Hall of Famer Richard Mandella.

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Hallway Feed’s Steve Caddel Retires

Tue, 2022-04-05 17:43

Hallway Feeds Technical Services Team Member Steve Caddel announced his retirement after 30 years with the company. The Uvalde, Texas native, Caddel began working for Hallway Feeds in technical services and sales in April of 1991. While working at Hallway Feeds, Caddel served the Thoroughbred community, balancing science with real-world knowledge of horses to advise clients on feed choices.

“I was out on the farm seeing the horses,” Caddel said. “When we would try something new, I could see if it was working or not. That allowed me to bring useful information back to [Hallway Feeds]. It wasn't anything planned, that's just how it evolved.”

Caddel has been part of several of Hallway Feeds' initiatives, including the incorporation of body condition score data into growth management, a growth study with Kentucky Equine Research resulting from the collection of weight and height data of thousands of horses being fed the feeds, and the advent of using information gleaned from radiographs to pinpoint joint issues.

“Having weighed, measured and body condition scored more Thoroughbreds than any other individual worldwide, Steve has led Hallway Feeds in collecting the largest set of growth data on the breed in the world,” said Lee Hall, vice president of Hallway Feeds.

Caddell will conclude his tenure with Hallway following an upcoming collaboration between the company and KER's Dr. Joe Pagan. The seminar will center around the results of many years of growth data compared to health records, sales results, and performance records.

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MSW Purses Set for CD, Ellis & Ky Downs

Tue, 2022-04-05 16:48

Purse levels for maiden special weight (MSW) races on the Kentucky circuit have been established for the upcoming meets at Churchill Downs ($120,000 in the first condition book), Ellis Park ($50,000 through July and August) and Kentucky Downs ($150,000 for seven days in September).

Those figures were revealed by representatives of those tracks Tuesday during a video meeting of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund (KTDF) advisory committee.

Ben Huffman, the vice president of racing and racing secretary at Churchill Downs, also confirmed that the newly installed turf course in Louisville is ready for racing.

“We're still on target for opening the turf course opening night [Apr. 30],” Huffman said. “The turf course is looking good. We certainly want it to warm up here a little quicker. We've had our consultants out there all winter. They were out there about a week, 10 days ago, and everything so far looks great. The root system's great. So we're on schedule as of right now.”

The $120,000 figure for Churchill's first-book MSW races through May 15 is an uptick over 2021's MSW purses, which were $115,000 during Derby week, then $100,000 for the balance of the spring/summer meet.

The $50,000 Ellis projection is a slight dip from $51,000 last year.

Kentucky Downs is adding one race date this season, up from six in 2021. MSW purses for the all-turf meet have risen from $90,000 in 2020 and $135,000 last year.

When Ted Nicholson, the senior vice president and general manager at Kentucky Downs, disclosed the $150,000 figure for this year's meet, Bill Landes III, the chairman of the KTDF, reacted with mock astonishment at such a high figure by asking if that figure was actually in United States dollars.

“Do you have a grass horse?” Nicholson deadpanned in response.

When Kentucky racing shifts back to Turfway Park next December, horsemen can expect not only the completion of the racino's new clubhouse/grandstand (scheduled to open to the public Sept. 1), but five new barns, a new two-story dormitory, and a new post-race testing barn in the stable area.

Chip Bach, Turfway's general manager, said the new dormitory will be “very similar to what they have at Churchill Downs” and it will be “a thousand percent better for our horsemen who live on the grounds…. Our goal is to have them ready before we open the barn area in November.”

Quipped Landes: “From what I hear, you'll have no problems filling them next year.”

An Ellis Park turf widening project has been stalled by wet weather, but surveying is set to begin once the infield dries out, an Ellis representative told the KTDF.

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Base Repairs Needed Prior to Preakness Meet

Tue, 2022-04-05 15:23

Pimlico Race Course will shut down for training over a three-day period later this month to repair the base of the main dirt track ahead of the GI Preakness S. meet that runs May 12-30.

Mike Rogers, the president of the racing division for The Stronach Group (TSG), which owns both Pimlico and Laurel Park, alerted the Maryland Racing Commission (MRC) to the upcoming closure during Tuesday's monthly commission meeting.

Rogers said the exact dates for the repairs are dependent on weather. Apr.17-20 is the primary time window, with Apr. 25-27 a backup option.

During the Apr. 5 meeting, Rogers described the work as a “normal, routine process.” He later detailed the areas that need attention in a follow-up email to TDN.

“The areas are on the outside before the chute and the outside in the middle of the far turn,” Rogers wrote. “The areas are previous repairs that have been repaired a number of times in the last 5+ years. While the track is shut down we can examine any other previous repairs done and fix accordingly.”

Pimlico's main track has been pressed into increased usage over the past year because of a massive main-track replacement project at Laurel. It's also scheduled to see extra usage this summer, because Pimlico is scheduled to host an August meet for the first time since 2005.

One year ago, Laurel's main track was in such bad shape that TSG ceased racing on it Apr. 11, 2021, to begin an emergency rebuild from the base up. The project was repeatedly delayed and had its scope expanded, and it ended up taking five months before racing could resume instead of the initially projected one month.

When racing resumed Sept. 9, Laurel's main track had no apparent safety issues. But the onset of cold weather revealed problems with seams in the base of the homestretch, then the cushion atop that layer needed substantial reworking to give it more body and depth.

Eight horses died from fractures while racing or training over Laurel's main track between Oct. 3 and Nov. 28, leading to several halts in racing and training that extended into January while expert track surface consultants scrambled to provide a fix.

Rogers reported to the MRC that the surface at Laurel is now in the process of being gradually de-winterized to prepare for warmer weather.

“]Laurel], as we know, we have issues with the cushion,” Rogers told the MRC. “So we're actually in the process now of converting that cushion back to being a summer track. So we're adding some of the finer materials again so that we can water the track and the track can withstand the warmer temperatures that happen in the summertime.”

Rogers continued: “The shoulder season when we go back and forth to the summer track will now be much more manageable than we've seen in the past. We're doing that now and there seems to be positive feedback from the horsemen. We were getting feedback earlier that [the track was] 'dead' or didn't have life to it. And that's kind of consistent with the track having the larger-coarse fibers that we've added [for winter]. And with the temperature warming up, now we're adding that finer [material].”

A check of the base of Laurel's main track will also be scheduled in the near future, Rogers said.

And Laurel's turf course is just 10 days from its first scheduled race on Apr. 15, Rogers reported.

“I know there's been discussions in the past about the drainage of this turf course. But we've undertaken to [install] cameras to check our drainage system. So everything checks so far–the drainage system is absolutely fine. But we do have prior maintenance practices of rolling this turf course quite a bit, so there's compaction that's fairly deep in the turf course. So it's actually a vertical drainage issue [and] we've been aerating it quite a bit. We aerated it last year, and we're continuing to do that. So I'm confident that we're heading in the right direction.

“Is this turf course exactly where it needs to be?” Rogers asked rhetorically. “Not quite yet. We still need to do much more aeration [so that] if we have a big rainstorm, it can drain properly and [we'll be] ready to race in short order. It's a work in progress, but we're definitely much better than we were last year, and I'm confident we'll be in good shape.”

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Ky Derby 148 Bottle to Benefit TRF

Tue, 2022-04-05 15:05

For the second consecutive year, Stoneware & Co. will offer a signed, numbered and limited number of Woodford Reserve Kentucky Derby 148 bottles to benefit the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF). This year's signed collector's edition will commemorate the 10th anniversary of I'll Have Another winning the Run for the Roses, and will be signed by two-time Kentucky Derby winning trainer, Doug O'Neill and two-time Kentucky Derby winning jockey, Mario Gutierrez.

“It is an exciting time of year with the Kentucky Derby approaching,” said Pat Stickney, TRF's Executive Director. “With so many eyes on horse racing, we are happy to be able engage a new audience on the importance of Thoroughbred aftercare. We are so grateful for the continued support from Stoneware & Co., as well as the generosity of Doug O'Neill and Mario Gutierrez who are devoting their valuable time to participate.”

With 400 bottles available exclusively through Stoneware & Co. for $129 each, the bottle is offered for pre-sale at www.stonewareandco.com.

“We believe bourbon collectors and horse racing fans will be clambering to own one of these rare bottles,” said Steve Smith, owner of Stoneware & Co. and Managing Partner of Paristown. “These signatures represent the finest in KY Derby history and are a perfect complement to this beautiful bottle of the world's finest bourbon. It will make a great addition to any bourbon aficionado's collection, while supporting an organization that literally saves horses and changes lives.”

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Commonwealth Racing Challenge Kicks off Apr. 8

Tue, 2022-04-05 14:50

The Commonwealth Racing Challenge kicks off Friday, Apr. 8 with the opening of the Keeneland spring race meet. The new initiative is designed to encourage Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP) members to visit all of Kentucky's racetracks during the 2022 Kentucky horse racing circuit.

KEEP members who successfully scan a unique QR code and tag KEEP in a social media post at each of the six participating Kentucky racetracks during their 2022 racing meets will be entered to win four VIP tickets the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Keeneland Nov. 4-5 in addition to dinner for four at Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse in Lexington.

Elisabeth Jensen, KEEP's Executive Vice President who oversees the daily operations of the organization, said, “Thanks to the support of Kentucky's legislature and governor, Kentucky continues building the strongest racing circuit in the country. The Commonwealth Racing Challenge gives people an opportunity to see the depth and breadth of the circuit throughout 2022.”

For more information, visit www.horseswork.com/commonwealth-racing-challenge.

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Epicenter Morning-Line Favorite in Final Derby Future Wager

Tue, 2022-04-05 13:07

Fans will have the final pari-mutuel opportunity to bet on this year's GI Kentucky Derby in advance of the May 7 race beginning Thursday at noon ET through Saturday at 4:30 p.m. ET for Pool 5 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”). Pool 5 of the KDFW features 24 betting interests and the 5-1 early morning-line favorite is Winchell Thoroughbreds' GII TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby winner Epicenter (Not This Time).

Unlike the previous three-day Kentucky Derby Future Wager opportunities, Pool 5 will feature an early start Thursday and will close Saturday prior to the first Road to the Kentucky Derby Championship Series event held that day. Nine individual betting interests in Saturday's pool are expected to run in that day's GI Toyota Blue Grass S., GI Runhappy Santa Anita Derby and GII Wood Memorial S.

Here is the complete field for Pool 5 of the KDFW (with sire, trainer and morning-line odds): #1 Barber Road (Race Day, John Ortiz, 50-1); #2 Charge It (Tapit, Todd Pletcher, 12-1); #3 Crown Pride (Jpn) (Reach the Crown {Jpn}, Koichi Shintani, 50-1); #4 Cyberknife (Gun Runner, Brad Cox, 12-1); #5 Early Voting (Gun Runner, Chad Brown, 20-1); #6 Emmanuel (More Than Ready, Pletcher, 20-1); #7 Epicenter (Steve Asmussen, 5-1); #8 Ethereal Road (Quality Road, D. Wayne Lukas, 50-1); #9 Forbidden Kingdom (American Pharoah, Richard Mandella, 8-1); #10 In Due Time (Not This Time, Kelly Breen, 50-1); #11 Messier (Empire Maker, Tim Yakteen, 8-1); #12 Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo, Pletcher, 20-1); #13 Morello (Classic Empire, Asmussen, 20-1); #14 Pioneer of Medina (Pioneerof the Nile Pletcher, 30-1); #15 Simplification (Not This Time, Antonio Sano, 15-1): #16 Slow Down Andy (Nyquist, Doug O'Neill, 50-1); #17 Smile Happy (Runhappy, Kenny McPeek, 6-1); #18 Summer Is Tomorrow (Summer Front, Bhupat Seemar, 50-1); #19 Tawny Port (Pioneerof the Nile, Cox, 50-1); #20 Tiz the Bomb (Hit It a Bomb, McPeek, 12-1); #21 White Abarrio (Race Day, Saffie Joseph, Jr., 8-1); #22 Zandon (Upstart, Brown, 20-1); #23 Zozos (Munnings, Cox, 30-1); #24 “All Other 3-Year-Olds” (15-1).

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Wagering Down in March, Narrowly Up for First Quarter

Tue, 2022-04-05 12:11

Betting on U.S. Thoroughbred races dropped slightly in March compared to the month's total in 2021, while remaining narrowly ahead through 2022's first three months compared to its pace from the first quarter of 2021, according to Equibase's report of economic indicators released Tuesday.

Overall, $942,589,741 was wagered in March, a 2.37% decline from $965,453,678 in March of 2021. The number of race days conducted was nearly identical, with 291 being run this March compared to 292 last year, making the average wagering per race day $3,239,140, down 2.03% from last March's average of $3,306,348. Purses rose 6.15% to $86,833,249 this March compared to $81,798,689 from last year. Average field size dropped 3.03% from 7.59 horses per race to 7.36.

Through the first quarter of 2022, a total of $2,796,360,290 has been bet, a 1.09% increase from $2,766,166,337 in 2021. However, with 807 race days having been run through March this year compared to 766 by the same point in 2021, average wagering per race day is down 4.04% at $3,465,130 compared to $3,611,183. Purses are clearly outpacing last year's numbers at $244,753,188, a 13.84% increase from 2021's first quarter total of $214,998,157, while field size for the first quarter averaged 7.56, a 3% decrease from 7.79 in 2021.

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Amplify Horse Racing, MyRacehorse Launch Children’s Tour Series

Tue, 2022-04-05 11:50

Amplify Horse Racing and MyRacehorse are launching “Amplify Junior, Sponsored by MyRacehorse”–a partnership that will deliver a children's educational tour series to Kentucky. The new initiative will teach young children and their parents and guardians about the Thoroughbred horse racing industry. The new junior program for children 12 and under will feature monthly educational tours from April through October at iconic locations in Kentucky, including Keeneland Race Course, Fasig-Tipton Sales Company, and Taylor Made Farm.

Each of the seven destinations will include a tour of the facility and hands-on engaging activities for children to learn about horses and the life cycle of the Thoroughbred. MyRacehorse and Amplify personnel will be onsite to host tours and enhance learning alongside facility representatives.

“This collaboration between MyRacehorse and Amplify perfectly aligns with our mission to bring all the fun, excitement, and opportunity that the Thoroughbred racing industry has to offer,” said MyRacehorse CEO and Founder Michael Behrens. “To be able to educate a younger generation of fans, who may become industry participants in the future, is a very worthwhile endeavor.”

“Amplify Horse Racing is excited to be working with MyRacehorse on expanding our educational programming to include children 12 and under,” said Annise Montplaisir, Amplify President and Co-Founder, and Equine Education Coordinator for the Kentucky Equine Education Project Foundation. “Developing a passion for horses frequently happens at a young age, so we look forward to cultivating the interest of the children and families who participate, and sharing our own love of the horse.”

Registration for the first event on April 23 at Godolphin's Gainsborough Farm will open in the coming days. For more information about the program and to view the complete list of tour destinations, click here, or contact info@amplifyhorseracing.org.

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TAA Launches Second Annual Calendar Photo Contest

Tue, 2022-04-05 11:43

The Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) Calendar Photo Contest is now open for submissions. The TAA is seeking photos of Thoroughbreds at a TAA-accredited organization or of Thoroughbreds who have been adopted from a TAA-accredited organization. Online submissions will be accepted now through June 11, 2022.

Twelve photos will be selected, including one cover photo winner which will receive a Tipperary 9800 Devon with MIPS helmet. Additionally, all twelve winners will receive a Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance swag bag and 2023 TAA Calendar. Winners will be announced in August 2022. Repole Stable is once again sponsoring the production and distribution of the TAA calendar.

Photo submissions must be in JPEG format in high-resolution (at least 300 ppi) and in landscape layout only. Color photographs are preferred. Themes of photos may include the following: Seasons (showcasing a winter scene, etc.), OTTB in training, happy adopter, OTTB used in equine-assisted therapy, etc. Submissions are free and open to residents of the US, Canada, and Puerto Rico. For more information, the official rules, and to enter the contest, click here.

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Woodbine and Century Mile Partner for Canadian-Ontario Derby Initiative

Tue, 2022-04-05 11:10

Woodbine Entertainment and Century Mile have partnered up to give the winner of the GIII Canadian Derby free entry to the GIII Ontario Derby. The Canadian Derby will be run Aug. 20 at Century Mile in Edmonton, while the Ontario Derby is scheduled for Oct. 23 at Woodbine. Any runner that wins both events will earn connections a $50,000 bonus.

“This exciting initiative provides a great opportunity to connect our sport across the country and further develop the Canadian Thoroughbred industry,” said Tim Lawson, Woodbine's director of Thoroughbred racing.

Woodbine's 2022 Thoroughbred season begins Apr. 16; Century Mile's begins Apr. 30.

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Straight Fire Colt Breezes :10 1/5 for TTA Sale

Tue, 2022-04-05 10:41

A Straight Fire colt out of Luckfromabove (Ire) (Excellent Art {GB}) topped workers for the 2022 Texas 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale Monday, breezing his eighth in :10 1/5 at Lone Star. Cataloged in the supplement as Hip 144, the colt was bred by LNJ Foxwoods in California and is consigned by Pike Racing, agent. The annual sale is conducted by the Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA) and is scheduled for Wednesday, Apr. 6, at 12 p.m. CT at Lone Star.

“I think the quality horses the consignors sent to us for this sale really put on a show today,” TTA Sales Director Foster Bridewell said. “The last horse to breeze drops the bullet, we had six go :10 2/5, and 17 stopped the timer in :10 3/5; that's a testament to the horses and the training leading up. We owe a debt of gratitude to the folks that trust us to sell for them and we're thankful for the consignors who have brought these athletes to this sale.”

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Dell Hancock to Receive Dinny Phipps Award

Tue, 2022-04-05 10:08

Edited Press Release

Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation announced today that Dell Hancock, chairman of the foundation, has been named the fifth recipient of the Dinny Phipps Award. She will be presented with the award at the Belmont Stakes Charity Celebration, which will be held Thursday, June 9.

Earle Mack, an active participant in Thoroughbred racing and breeding for more than five decades, created the award in 2017 in memory of Phipps to honor an individual or individuals who have demonstrated dedication to equine health. Previous winners of the Dinny Phipps Award are the Phipps family, Frank Stronach, John Oxley, and Michael Del Giudice.

“Dell has been a tireless worker and friend in every area of our industry and most deserving of the Dinny Phipps award,” Mack said. “Dell, thank you for a lifetime of dedication.”

Hancock joined the Grayson board in 1985 and was named chairman in 2004. She has been an active member of The Jockey Club (TJC) for more than 25 years and served two terms on the board of stewards. She is currently a member of TJC's Thoroughbred Safety Committee. Under Hancock's leadership, Grayson has become the largest private funder of equine research. Since 2004, the year Hancock became chairman, Grayson has provided more than $21 million to fund 231 projects as well as an additional $480,000 to fund 30 career development awards.

“The Hancock family and the Phipps family have a long, deep relationship, which makes me even more honored to be the recipient of this award bearing Dinny's name. He is a man I respected in so many ways,” Hancock said.

The Belmont Stakes Charity Celebration, traditionally one of Grayson's largest fundraisers, will be held at the famed Tavern on the Green in New York City's Central Park. It will be hosted at the venue's south patio, which features views of the park and Manhattan skyline.

The event is scheduled for 7-10 p.m. and will include cocktails and food stations with an emphasis on Kentucky flavors. Entertainment will be provided by Kentucky's own Wolfpen Branch, a bluegrass band co-founded by Arthur Hancock IV.

Tickets for the celebration are $250 each, and various sponsorship levels are available. Those interested in purchasing tickets or sponsorships can do so at this link or by contacting Shannon Kelly at skelly@jockeyclub.com or 212-521-5327.

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Baffert Banned in NY Through ‘At Least’ Early July

Mon, 2022-04-04 13:13

Citing Section 910 of the New York Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Breeding Law, the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) has announced that it will honor the 90-day suspension handed down to trainer Bob Baffert and that the conditioner is “prohibited from participating in any New York State horse racing activity through at least July 2, 2022.”

Section 910 reads: “§ 910. Reciprocity of licenses. All license denials, suspensions and revocations imposed by the pertinent racing and gambling authorities of other jurisdictions, including states, United States territories, and Canadian provinces shall be recognized and enforced by the commission …”

According to a release from the NYSGC, Baffert is suspended in New York and may not enter any horses to run at any New York track, including Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga–run by the New York Racing Association–as well as Finger Lakes Race Track.

New York is one of 38 racing states that honors out-of-state suspensions issued by regulators.

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