UPDATE - 2:51 p.m.ALL PICKS ADDED...SEE BELOW
(TOP PIC) PRUSSIAN competes today in the inaugural Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf..he last raced at Woodbine in the Summer Stakes and won it..photo by Cindy Pearson Dulay)
(ABOVE) BEAR NOW at Monmouth schooling. Janis Maine took the picture for her hubby Reade Baker's site - www.readebaker.com
Welcome to Day 1 of the Breeders’Cup World Thoroughbred Championships – although there are many racing lovers out there who simply view the first 3 races of the series that will run today as simply some nice races and that tomorrow is the actual Breeders’ Cup.
It will be interesting to see the races at Monmouth with so much rain and slop there in the last couple of days.
Reade Baker, who has BEAR NOW in the Distaff for Danny Dion, is high on JAZZ NATION, who runs today in the Favorite Trick Stakes...Jen's picks further down...mark me down in the DRAKE'S LongRun/Breeders' Cup contest!
From NJ.com (everything New Jersey)
(JEREMY on the turf - www.horse-races.net, awesome photos and quotes)
Rain could hamper Breeders' Cup
(and Monmouth has a NO UMBRELLA policy??)
by Tom Luicci
The Breeders' Cup lineup hasn't suffered any weather-related scratches yet, but that may change if the forecast for today and Saturday is on the mark.
Weather.com is predicting rain for both days of the 11-race Breeders' Cup starting today.
The only scratches so far -- Cry and Catch Me from the Juvenile Fillies, Attila's Storm from the Sprint and Dixie Chatter from the Juvenile -- have been withdrawn because of illness or injury. Attila's Storm was scratched Thursday because of ankle soreness, according to trainer Richard Schosberg. Dixie Chatter ran a fever after arriving from California on Monday, trainer Richard Mandella said.
Cry and Catch Me was declared out of the Juvenile Fillies on Wednesday after coming down with a fever.
But the ongoing rain could result in more defections. The track was listed as sloppy yesterday and the scheduled turf races were taken off the grass. The rain has made the new turf course soft, a condition that should favor the European runners, who are more accustomed to the wet -- and heavy -- turf.
"I think a soft turf is going to compromise most of my horses," said trainer Todd Pletcher.
Pletcher said Thursday he would likely scratch Wait a While from the Filly & Mare Turf if the rain persisted and the course came up soft.
With temporary seating set up along the first turn and in the picnic area at the top of the stretch, several thousand fans face the prospect of having to watch the Breeders' Cup in the rain. Monmouth Park has a no-umbrella policy.
Monmouth Park vice president and general manager Bob Kulina said fans in those areas can find shelter in the massive temporary tents the track put in as a hedge against bad weather.
"There's enough room for them in the tents," he said. "They won't have to be standing in the rain all day."
One trainer who doesn't have any idea how his horse will react to a wet, muddy or sloppy surface is Reade Baker, who conditions Canadian shipper and Distaff hopeful Bear Now.
"We don't have any off tracks," he said, a reference to Woodbine's artificial surface.
There are 12 Breeders' Cup contenders with some Canadian connection that will compete at the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, set for Monmouth Park in Oceanport, New Jersey, this Friday and Saturday, October 26 and 27.
CANADIAN REPORT FROM WOODBINE MEDIA OFFICE
1. FILLY AND MARE SPRINT
MARYFIELD (Canadian-bred by Mike Carroll, Guelph, Ontario and John Harvey Jr.) jogged on Thursday.
Elvis Trujillo (Career Canadian record: 1 start-0 wins-0 seconds-0 thirds at Woodbine) rides the colt, who has a career record of eight wins, five seconds and one third in 27 starts, for trainer Doug O’Neill (Canadian record: 2 starts-0 wins-1 second-0 thirds at Woodbine and 1-0-1-0 at Hastings).
2. JUVENILE TURF
3. DIRT MILE
4. JUVENILE FILLIES
CLEARLY FOXY (Canadian-based at Woodbine, trained by Mark Casse of Kleinburg, to be ridden by Woodbine regular Patrick Husbands of Brampton) galloped 1 ½ miles over the Monmouth main strip on Thursday at around 8:15 a.m. He was expected to walk over with the first and fifth race this afternoon to school in the paddock.
Owner Charlie LaLoggia arrived in town on Wednesday and was on the Monmouth backstretch Thursday morning.
He says he’s set to enjoy the Breeders’ Cup experience this year, something he admits he didn’t to the fullest with Skip Code in 2006 at Churchill.
“I was so nervous about it last year. I didn’t take it all in,” LaLoggia said. “It was a whirlwind. I said if I ever got back here, I would enjoy it more. I’m excited to be here.”
He likes what he sees in Clearly Foxy. “She loves it here. She’s eating great, training well. She’s so sweet.”
Casse has 66 wins, 61 seconds and 36 thirds in 285 starts at Woodbine in 2007, while Husbands has 108 wins, 113 seconds and 75 thirds in 551 starts at his home track this year.
OVEREXTENDED (Canadian-owned by John P. Reddam, a native of Windsor, Ontario) galloped on Thursday.
Doug O’Neill (CR: 2-0-1-0 at Woodbine and 1-0-1-0 at Hastings) trains the Monarchos roan. Frankie Dettori (CR: 17-3-2-2 at Woodbine) rides the two-year-old with a record of one win, one second and a third in five starts.
TALE OF EKATI (Canadian-owned by Charles Fipke, a native of Edmonton, Alberta) jogged at Belmont on Thursday, arrived at Monmouth around noon on Thursday.
Barclay Tagg (CR: 5-1-2-0 at Woodbine and 1-0-0-0 at Hastings) conditions the Tale of the Cat colt, who has career record of two wins, one second in the three starts. Eibar Coa (CR: 11-2-2-2 at Woodbine) rides on Saturday.
6. FILLY AND MARE TURF
ARRAVALE (Canadian-owned by Robert Costigan, of Vancouver, B.C., trained by Mac Benson of Woodbridge, Ontario) galloped 1 1/2 miles and schooled in the gate on Thursday at approximately 8:45 a.m. over a mucky Monmouth main strip.
"She's good today," said Barb Przedrzymirska, assistant trainer for her husband, Mac Benson. "She’s calm. She’s a good horse who always acts well. She has a super temperament; a little tough to gallop, but to handle I have no complaints.”
Benson has eight wins, 15 seconds and five thirds in 71 starts at Woodbine in 2007, while mare’s jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. has one win, two seconds and two thirds in nine starts lifetime at Woodbine.
GREG'S GOLD (Canadian-owned by William Boswell of Calgary, Alberta) galloped 1 mile on Thursday.
Chuck Lopez (CR: 1-0-0-0 at Woodbine) rides the Lake George six-year-old for trainer David Hofmans (CR: 5-3-0-0 at Woodbine). The gelding has seven wins, nine seconds and a third in 20 career starts.
Hofmans, who won the Queen’s Plate at Woodbine in 1998 with Awesome Again, admitted concern over the surface switch. Greg’s Gold usually trains over Cushion Track. “I was a little concerned. He has smooth shoes on because we normally train on a synthetic surface, but Martin (exercise rider Martin De Rubin) said he went right through it, didn’t stumble and extended himself. I thought he looked tremendous doing it.”
HOST (Canadian-owned by Melnyk Racing Stables (Eugene Melnyk) of Toronto) galloped 1 3/8 miles on Thursday.
Garrett Gomez (CR: 21-3-5-4 at Woodbine) gets the call for Todd Pletcher (CR: 64-15-8-6 at Woodbine and 2-1-0-0 at Fort Erie), who has in part guided the Chilean-bred to nine wins, four seconds and five thirds in 24 career starts.
Pletcher was reasonable in his expectations for Host in the tough Mile. “Everything is going to have to break his way exactly for Host to even have a chance.”
SILENT NAME (co-Canadian owned by Stronach Stables (Frank Stronach) of Aurora, Ontario) jogged 1 mile.
Kent Desormeaux (CR: 27-7-2-2 at Woodbine) will ride the Sunday Silence five-year-old for Robert Frankel (CR: 82-19-15-11 at Woodbine and 3-0-0-2 at Fort Erie). The colt has a record of six wins, two seconds and four thirds in 21 starts.
Chad Brown, Frankel’s assistant trainer, said Silent Name is in good form. “He shipped great and he looks spectacular. He’s doing good.”
BEAR NOW (owned by Bear Stables (Danny Dion) of Edmonton, Alberta, trained by Reade Baker of Toronto, to be ridden by Jerry Baird of Toronto), galloped 1 1/2 miles after the 8:15 a.m. break and schooled in the gate and paddock on Thursday.
Trainer Reade Baker and wife, Janis Maine, watched their sharp filly from the rail at the busy “gap” (entrance-exit access area for horses during morning training hours).
Baker and Maine, substantial horse racing fans, are enjoying their time at Monmouth. “It’s just so amazing seeing all these great horses right here in front of us,” Maine said, pointing to the Monmouth strip.
Assistant trainer Ruth Schmidt, who has been with Bear Now for all her ships, said she’s even better than she was before her win in the Fitz Dixon Cotillion at Philadelphia Park last month. “I’ve been with her everywhere and she is getting more professional and more relaxed each trip.”
Baker has 42 wins, 40 seconds and 40 thirds in 319 starts at Woodbine in 2007, while Baird has 31 wins, 28 seconds and 33 thirds in 262 starts at his home track this year.
GINGER PUNCH (Canadian-owned by Stronach Stables (Frank Stronach) of Aurora, Ontario) galloped 1 3/8 miles at Belmont, on Thursday, expected at Monmouth on Thursday.
Rafael Bejarano (CR: 2-0-1-0 at Woodbine)will ride Robert Frankel’s (CR: 82-19-15-11 at Woodbine and 3-0-0-2 at Fort Erie) Awesome Again colt, who holds a record of six wins, five seconds and a third in 13 starts.
INDIAN VALE (Canadian-owned and bred by Melnyk Racing Stables (Eugene Melnyk) of Toronto) galloped 1 3/8 miles on Thursday.
Jockey John Velazquez (CR: 36-5-7-4 at Woodbine) is high on Eugene Melnyk’s homebred Canadian-bred, despite drawing post 10 in the field of 12. “She’s been very unlucky, but she is a good mare,” he said. “She’s been training very well.”
Todd Pletcher (CR: 64-15-8-6 at Woodbine and 2-1-0-0 at Fort Erie) trains the five-year-old A.P. Indy mare, who has a career record of seven wins, one second and one third in 13 starts.
RED ROCKS (Canadian-owned by John P. Reddam, a native of Windsor, Ontario) cantered 3 miles on main track on Thursday.
Brian Meehan (CR: 1-0-0-0 at Woodbine) trains the Galileo four-year-old, while Frankie Dettori (CR: 17-3-2-2 at Woodbine) gets the call on Saturday. The dark bay has a record of four wins, four seconds and two thirds in 14 starts.
“This race has been our number one plan since he won last year,” Meehan said. “The horse has really grown up this year and is full of confidence.”
JENNIFER’S BREEDERS’ CUP ANALYSIS
FIRST THREE RACES - FRIDAY
FILLY & MARE SPRINT
6 furlongs, 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 4:20 p.m.
Purse: $1 million
Early favourites: Dream Rush (2-1), La Traviata (5-2)
Canadian content: Maryfield (Canadian-bred by Mike Carroll, Guelph, Ont., and John Harvey Jr.)
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1- OPRAH WINNEY 2- LA TRAVIATA 3-WILD GAMS
THE SCOOP: ‘Oprah’ loves Monmouth Park and the mud. Canadian-bred Maryfield is a wet track ace and she will be charging.
1 mile, 2-year-olds
Post time: 4:55 p.m.
Purse: $1 million
Early favourites: Prussian (3-1), Achill Island (7-2)
Canadian content: none
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1 – ACHILL ISLAND 2-STRIKE THE DEAL 3-PRUSSIAN
LONGSHOT – YOUR ROUND
THE SCOOP: Young horses on a grass course that surely will be slippery – scary. Consider the Europeans Achill Island and Strike the Deal as they may handle the bog better.
1 mile 70 yards; 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 5:35 p.m.
Purse: $1 million
Early favourites: Discreet Cat (2-1), Corinthian (7-2)
Canadian content: none
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-PARK AVENUE BALL 2- DISCREET CAT 3-LEWIS MICHAEL
THE SCOOP: Discreet Cat was once considered the next superstar but two losses in just two races in the last two years have cooled the excitement. How about Monmouth track monster Park Avenue Ball as the upsetter?
JENNIFER’S BREEDERS’ CUP ANALYSIS
(** I did not put a longshot pick on all of the races)
1 1/16 miles, 2-year-olds
Post time: 12:30 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: Indian Blessing (3-1), Proud Spell (5-1)
Canadian content: Clearly Foxy (Canadian-based at Woodbine, trained by
Mark Casse of Toronto)
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-SMARTY DEB 2-IZARRA 3-GRACE ANATOMY
LONGSHOT – CLEARLY FOXY
Canadian-based Clearly Foxy has only raced on grass but is bred for the dirt (and the mud) and she’s never been beaten. Also undefeated is Smarty Deb, from Washington state and she’s a daughter of Canadian-bred stallion Smart Strike.
1 1/16 miles, 2-year-old colts and geldings
Post time: 1:10 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: War Pass (5-2), Tale of Ekati (7-2)
Canadian content: Overextended (Canadian-owned by John P. Reddam, a
native of Windsor); Tale of Ekati (Canadian-owned by Charles Fipke, a
native of Edmonton)
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1- WAR PASS 2-PYRO 3-OLD MAN BUCK
LONGSHOT – KODIAK KOWBOY
Undefeated War Pass looked like a monster when he won the Grade 1 Champagne Stakes at Belmont. Woodbine stakes winner Kodiak Kowboy is a longshot with speed.
FILLY & MARE TURF
1 3/8 miles (turf), 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 1:55 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: Nashoba's Key (3-1), Passage of Time (7-2)
Canadian content: Arravale (Canadian-owned by Robert Costigan of
Vancouver, trained by Mac Benson of Woodbridge)
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-ARGENTINA 2-PASSAGE OF TIME 3-NASHOBA’S KEY
LONGSHOT: ALL MY LOVING
The owners of Argentina almost sent her to Woodbine for the E.P. Taylor Stakes worth $1 million – goes for $2 million on this day instead. Canada’s Horse of the Year will move up if the grass is as soft as predicted.
6 furlongs, 3 year-olds and up
Post time: 2:35 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: Midnight Lute (2-1), Smokey Stover (7-2)
Canadian content: Greg's Gold (owned by Albertan William Boswell)
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1- SMOKEY STOVER 2-BENNY THE BULL 3-COMMENTATOR
LONGSHOT: GREG’S GOLD
The fleet Smokey Stover looked awesome in his last workout as did stretch running Benny the Bull.
1 mile (turf), 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 3:20 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: Excellent Art (3-1), After Market (7-2)
Canadian content: Host (Canadian-owned by Melnyk Racing Stables of
Toronto); Silent Name (co-Canadian owned by Stronach Stables' Frank
Stronach of Aurora).
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-REMARKABLE NEWS 2-AFTER MARKET 3-EXCELLENT ART
Remarkable News has an awful post position (14) but he came off a long layoff with a creditable effort in the Woodbine Mile. He’s good enough. After Market would have looked really good on a drier grass course.
1 1/8 miles, 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 4:05 p.m.
Purse: $2 million
Early favourites: Indian Vale (3-1), Ginger Punch (7-2)
Canadian content: Bear Now (owned by Bear Stables' Danny Dion of
Edmonton, trained by Reade Baker of Toronto, to be ridden by Jerry
of Toronto); Ginger Punch (Canadian owned by Stronach Stables of
Aurora); Indian Vale (Canadian-owned and bred by Melnyk Racing Stables
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-GINGER PUNCH 2-INDIAN VALE 3-BEAR NOW
This corner’s best bet is Frank Stronach’s Ginger Punch who was supplemented to this race for $180,000. Canadian-bred Indian Vale is consistent and Bear Now will be loose on the lead.
1 1/2 miles, 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 4:50 p.m.
Purse: $3 million
Early favourites: Dylan Thomas (7-5), English Channel (5-2)
Canadian content: Red Rocks (Canadian-owned by John P. Reddam, a native
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-BETTER TALK NOW 2-DYLAN THOMAS 3-RED ROCKS
He’s fresh and he’s the senior member of the field at age eight so go with Better Talk Now to upset the European superstar Dylan Thomas.
1 1/4 miles. 3-year-olds and up
Post time: 5:35 p.m.
Purse: $5 million
Early favourites: Lawyer Ron (5-2), Street Sense (3-1), Curlin (3-1)
Canadian content: none
JENNIFER’S PICKS: 1-LAWYER RON 2-STREET SENSE 3-CURLIN
The older horse will get the best of the younger guys. Lawyer Ron, a son of Canadian-bred champion Langfuhr, has been virtually unbeatable all season.
From the New York Post
COLUMNIST LOVES THE CANADIANS!
by RAY KERRISON
October 26, 2007 -- OCEANPORT, N.J. - The Breeders' Cup always has been the best and toughest betting card of the season with bulging fields, good prices and spectacular upsets.
This year, the battle is even more hazardous with three additional races, an off-track, sodden turf, horses coming off synthetic racing surfaces and a track with tight turns, short run-ups and kiss-of-death wide post positions.
My approach (which sometimes works) is to bet longshots and save with them under favorites in the exotics.
With that in mind, I'll skip the three Breeders' Cup races this afternoon. The favorites appear to have the first race, the Filly and Mare Sprint, at their mercy, but Maryfield, at 15-1 is interesting because she is 3 for 4 on wet tracks.
Favorites also look strong in the Juvenile Turf. The Dirt Mile is tricky because of Discreet Cat's uncertain form. One to watch is Wanderin Boy, 2 for 3 in the wet. He's listed at 8-1.
The first race tomorrow, the Juvenile Fillies, might provide an opening. Everyone hates Clearly Foxy, the Canadian shipper, discarded at 30-1 on the line. She's 2-for-2, on grass, but she got the last quarter of her last race in 23.4 seconds, a winning gallop anywhere.
Longshots have won three of the last four Juveniles, The favorites this year look solid, but Z Humor, who finished third in the Champagne, has an outstanding off-track pedigree. At 12-1 from the rail, I'll give him a punch at the windows.
The Filly & Mare Turf is the perfect spot for Arravale, a 30-1 bomb. Exactly a year ago, she won the Grade 1 E P Taylor over 11/4 miles at Woodbine over a soft course, fetching a 103 Beyer speed figure. Tomorrow, she will get a mushy track for the 13/8-mile trip after three preps at a mile.
The Sprint is another opportunity. I'll bet against Midnight Lute at 2-1. Drawn inside, he figures to get buried in the first furlong. I'll take a wild shot with 20-1 Kelly's Landing, who runs well fresh, and has been working bullets for her first race since March.
I also will wager a few bucks on Nick Zito's Commentator, who is a monster fresh off the bench and has been working in blacktype for his return. Priced at 12-1, he's a nifty 3-for-3 on wet tracks.
The Mile is a puzzle. After Market can't function in the wet, Excellent Art, the talented British-bred has drawn gate 13 (ugh) and the world's leading trainer, Todd Pletcher has two runners, Icy Atlantic and Host, both at 30-1.
The Distaff is anybody's guess. Because Lear's Princess is the only filly in the field to beat Belmont Stakes winner Rags to Riches, she should be able to handle these. But right behind Lear in the Gazelle was Tough Tiz's Sis, from the Baffert stable. At 20-1, she definitely is worth a close look.
The Turf should be a showcase for Dylan Thomas. British bookmakers have him at odds-on. A race to watch and savor.
The Classic is the most-anticipated race in living memory. It is, finally, going to reveal the best horse in the land. Lawyer Ron, Curlin and Hard Spun are all coming off hard-slugging races - at least that's my rationale for bypassing them and settling on the champ, Street Sense, with insurance on longshot Tiago.
The jockey’s race at Woodbine is still hot but Patrick Husbands goes away tomorrow to the Breeders’ Cup. Husbands won the 1st race on LEGAL TIES for trainer Tony Mattine and the Empress Stable.
Emma-Jayne Wilson won two yesterday – on the 2yo grey Ontario-bred gelding DOINWHATIDO (Luhuk-Seattle Pearl by Seattle Morn) after a stretch long duel with the Black Minnloushe gelding Poetic Cat and on the exciting turf filly TELL IT AS IT IS (Chester House Kentucky-bred) who is sure to be a nice prospect next year in the turf mare ranks.
Tyler Pizarro won on favoured PORT RENFREW in the 8th race for Tucci Stables and Sid Attard.
Chantal Sutherland has been making lots of noise and won two more races yesterday – MA PECHE for Shortstop Stable and trainer Judy Pottins who lit up the results board with a huge score for $12,500 claiming and BRIGADIER RODNEY, Brenda Goodlet’s Ontario-bred by Service Stripe trained by Tino Attard who won for $16,000.
Sutherland’s two wins sandwiched a tough outing when she was hopelessly blocked through the stretch on VALHALLER in race 3, a maiden allowance. The gelding may have been best.
In that race, well bred first-timer GIANT’S FORZA was overbet at even-money, broke slowly and raced evenly but missed the board.
From cbc.bb - Barbados
Melnyk wins another legal battle
Millionaire race horse owner Eugene Melnyk has won his three-year legal battle with the Barbados Turf Club, over the result of the 2004 Gold Cup.
The BTC had disqualified Melnyk’s entry Kathir for a positive drugs test, 10 months after the chestnut horse won the prestigious event in 2004 at the Garrison Savannah here.
Melnyk, the Barbados-based Canadian businessman, challenged the BTC’s decision and on Thursday, Justice Elneth Kentish ruled in his favour.
The judgement means that Kathir has been confirmed as winner of the BDS $128 550 (US $65 000) event and Melnyk said the money would now be handed out to various charities.
“"This action was never about money but principal. I have always been a great supporter of horse racing and sport in Barbados and I now intend to distribute the purse to various charities supporting youth and sporting foundations,” Melnyk said.
A release from Melnyk said he “was at the time severely embarrassed and hurt by the considerable harm to his reputation, which he suffered as a result of the decision of the Turf Club.”
The release also said the decision of the High Court “vindicates his position that the hearing by the Stewards of the Turf Club was ‘unfair’.”
Melnyk’s lawyers had questioned the integrity of the process leading to Kathir’s positive drugs test.
It is the second such success for Melnyk in recent weeks after Sealy Hill, Canada’s champion three-year old filly, was reinstated as the winner of the Bison City Stakes by the Ontario Racing Commission.
Sealy Hill, with top Barbadian jockey Patrick Husbands aboard, was disqualified after winning the CAN$250 000 event on July 1 this year at the Woodbine racetrack but racing authorities upheld Melnyk’s appeal.