ascot aug08

Wednesday, April 30, 2008



The CTHS Awards Dinner, honouring the Ontario-Bred champions of 2007, will take place on Friday, June 13th at the Glencairn Golf Club in Milton, Ontario.

The event will honour partners Mike Carroll and John C Harvey, Jr. as Breeder of the Year and the late Tammy Samuel-Balaz as the recipient of this year's Blood-Horse Mint Julep Cup award. Other highlights will include the presentation of over 70 awards to the Ontario breeders of Historical Grade 1 Canadian or Open Graded Stakes and Ontario-Bred Stakes Winners of 2007. A silent auction will also take place with the proceeds going to the LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society.

"We're very pleased to honour such great people who have made a significant contribution to the Thoroughbred breeding industry," said Julie Coulter, General Manager for the Ontario CTHS. "Especially to Mike Carroll and John Harvey, Jr. as our Breeder of the Year, who produced Maryfield, the winner of last year's $1 million Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, and our recognition to this year's Mint Julep Cup winner Tammy Samuel-Balaz for the important contributions she made to our Ontario breeding industry."

Tickets for the awards dinner are $78.75 per person and may be obtained by contacting the CTHS office at 416-675-3602. The cocktail reception begins at 6:00 p.m., followed by the dinner and awards at 6:30 p.m.

The Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario Division) is a non-profit organization representing breeders within Ontario by promoting Canadian-Bred/Ontario-Foaled Thoroughbreds, both nationally and around the world.


Folks have reported trouble getting on the site but it seems to be working today.
Log in (if you played last year, use the same codes) and pick the winners of some races tonight for a chance to win some cash.

It is a typical Wed. night card except with big fields for the 9 races.
The feature is the 2nd race (as mentioned earlier this week) but there is a split of a maiden allowance for Ontario sired fillies worth $60,000.
Race 3 - the first division - will feature a big favourite in MANITOBA MISS, who has made her way back to Canada after some good tries south of the border. She has post 11, which is not great.

Race 6 is a lot more confusing. DO IT ANYWAY, from the hot Nick Gonzalez barn, has the rail post, not great, but ran well enough if her first start of the year when 3rd in a 5 furlong race. Florida-raced ILLUSIVE LOVE (One Way Love) is a contender in the wide open dash.


COOL GATOR popped up on the worktab this (WEDNESDAY) morning - 49 4/5 breezing at Woodbine on the Polytrack. The colt is the winterbook favourite for the QUEEN'S PLATE but is the 2nd choice now to HARLEM ROCKER.

THE QUEENSTON STAKES is on Saturday. Trainer Roger Attfield was blown away by NOT BOURBON'S huge effort in the Achievement Stakes in his season debut when a close 2nd to rival STUCK IN TRAFFIC. The two meet up again in the 7 furlong Queenston and both must avoid the bounce.
KESAGAMI (Carson City) is a dangerous rival even if he is making his seaosn debut.
Attfield, still on the sidelines with his foot injury, hopes to be at the races on Saturday for the Queenston.

2008 Kentucky Oaks

Horse Morning Line ML w/o Eight Belles

1 Golden Doc A 12-1 12-1
2 Absolutely Cindy 20-1 20-1
3 Awesome Chic 20-1 20-1
4 Elusive Lady 30-1 30-1
5 Rasierra 50-1 50-1
6 Country Star 4-1 3-1
7 Little Belle 8-1 6-1
8 Proud Spell 7-2 5-2
9 A To The Croft 20-1 20-1
10 Bsharpsonata 6-1 5-1
11 Pure Clan 6-1 7-2
12 Eight Belles 5-2 Scratch


Yesterday I sifted through the starters from a Beyer Figure standpoint. Today I will make some comments on them from a class/current form standpoint.

PYRO - Ton sof class, looked like a standout in his prep wins - until his Blue Grass debacle that is...again, if it was Polytrack, then the switch to traditional dirt will help.

TALE OF EKATI - Canadian-owned colt was rallying the stopping War Pass in the Wood Memorial, the race was visually unimpressive. In good form however.

COLONEL JOHN - He's never raced on anything other than synthetic! In great form and his rally in the SA Derby was opposite of 'Rkati - he looked pretty good.

GAYEGO - I will add him to my poll, not sure why he was not there. In top form, has the real knocks.

BIG BROWN - Classi, won the Fla Derby, good form, has not met a challenge yet.

DENIS OF CORK - Poor race last time at Hawthorne. Owner blames himself for going to that race...colt had no chance to rally from behind slow pace.

VISIONAIRE - Won the Gotham in adverse conditions but dull on Polytrack last time.

BIG TRUCK - Edged the modest ATONED in the Tampa Bay Derby, dull in Blue Grass.

BOB BLACK JACK - Fast and he ran big in the SA Derby even if he looks like a sprinter. Blinkers on means go-go-go

SMOOTH AIR - Class a question, 2nd to Big Brown but not a threat.

COOL COAL MAN - Like Pyro etc., Polytrack may have been a bummer for him last time, he won the Fountain of Youth and looked good doing it.

ANAK NAKAL - Not in good form, beaten by Tale of Ekati last time.

EIGHT BELLES - Filly has tons of class and is in hot form.

Z HUMOR - Class a question - beaten by many, many of these in his preps

MONBA - bounced back in the Blue Grass so he has the class, good form, check, form? He's erratic.

COURT VISION - Blinkers on! Could be a different horse. Class a question but in decent form as he plods along.

Z FORTUNE - Had a better outing last time when behind Gayego, class still a question

ADRIANO (Pictured)- Classy, yes, good form, yes, layoff? Hmmmmm, never mind the question about traditional dirt. What's with EDGAR PRADO too,..he rode 3 of these to wins last time and picks this guy...hmmmmmmmm.

RECAPTURETHEGLORY - Stole the Ill. Derby, class still a question. Good form.

COWBOY CAL - Big time class question, in reasonable form


Fellow BLOGGER, Michael Tynan is blogging for the courier-journal and has a fun way to make some cash at the Derby...for those who can't read the DAILY RACING FORM..

Be$t Bets
If you took our handicapper's advice last year, you would have made money. Don't blow it this time.

By Michael A. Tynan • April 30, 2008

It's that time of year again, when everyone from your kindergarten teacher to the kid who mows your lawn has a Derby pick. But what do you do if you can't tell a thoroughbred from a dairy cow and get a headache trying to decipher the Daily Racing Form?

Working with a bankroll of $26, here are some bets that will hopefully have you cashing tickets at Churchill Downs.

It's worth a look -- if you took my advice last year, you would have netted $82 on the race.

This is the easiest bet you will make all day. Put $2 across the board. This means that you are betting on a horse to win, place or show. But who do you pick? Florida Derby winner Big Brown is looking like everyone's favorite, but he has fragile feet and was bred for turf. I don't think he will live up to the hype. Instead consider Pyro, who has a proven ability to win through traffic and will probably be the second or third choice at post time.

How to make the bet: $2 to win, place and show on Pyro. (Note: Use the program number when placing bets.)

Total: $6

In an exacta, you must pick the first- and second-place horses in the race. "Boxing" is a way of hedging the bet so you have money on both combinations. In this case, here are three horses for your box: Pyro, who came in second in last year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile; Colonel John, who won the Santa Anita Derby; and Arkansas Derby winner Gayego. If any two of these horses finish first or second, so will you.

How to make the bet: $1 exacta box with Pyro, Colonel John and Gayego.

Total: $6

In a trifecta, you pick the first-, second- and third-place horses. Many folks hear the words "trifecta wheel" and run away in fear. Yes, this bet is complicated, but it gives you eight different combinations, increasing your chances of a win. In this case, make a wheel with Colonel John, Pyro, Court Vision and Big Brown. Don't worry; the betting clerks do this for a living. They will know what you are talking about, even if you don't.

How to make the bet: $1 trifecta on Colonel John and Pyro with Colonel John, Pyro and Court Vision, with Colonel John, Pyro, Court Vision and Big Brown.

Total: $8

Some handicappers believe a horse must meet five criteria to be a Derby winner: It must have started as a 2-year-old, raced at least three times as a 3-year-old, raced three weeks to a month before the Derby, finished third or better in its final prep and have a Beyer speed rating of 100 or greater as a 3-year-old. Of the top 20 probable Derby horses, only four meet these criteria: Bob Black Jack, Eight Belles, Gayego and Z Fortune.

Of these four, Bob Black Jack (who set the world record at six furlongs earlier this year), Z Fortune (who finished second in the Arkansas Derby) and filly Eight Belles will offer the most value. (Note: The owner of Eight Belles may enter her in the Kentucky Oaks instead.)

How to make the bet: $2 to win on Bob Black Jack, Eight Belles and Z Fortune.

Total: $6

Michael will be blogging about the Derby from Churchill Downs at and

.. has some funny backstretch stories from the Derby through BLINKERS OFF...

Here's yesterday's post...

Blinkers Off - Tuesday

Throughout Derby week, special Railbird correspondent Blinkers Off will be checking in with the backstretch stories you won't get anywhere else. Today at Churchill ...

Rick Dutrow and Big Brown are unquestionably the stars of this Kentucky Derby. Not only did Dutrow have the lone formal press conference scheduled Tuesday, the location was changed as well, leaving several veteran Derby reporters scrambling. "How are we supposed to know these things?" asked one, who happened to fortunately be standing in the media center where it had been moved to. "Word of mouth," she was told ...

Dutrow, wearing a "Palm Meadows" cap and a down vest over a hoodie (temperatures were in the low 40s), might become the new D. Wayne Lukas of Triple Crown racing if he continues talking about women instead of horses. "It's like trying to be with a pretty girl and you can't," he said in response to one question, eliciting laughter, some of it nervous. The trainer was on better footing when asked about Kent Desormeax, a two-time Derby winner, calling Big Brown the best horse he had ever been on. "Desormeaux got paid a lot of money to say that," Dutrow responded ...

Nick Zito was in fine New York form outside his barn. Talking about Anak Nakal and Cool Coal Man, not exactly Affirmed and Alydar, Zito said, "I wish Bill Parcells was here. I'd tell him we have Jeff Hostetler." Zito held court at length about his distaste for Polytrack. "I like dirt and grass. I don't want something from the attic." ...

David Carroll, whose Denis of Cork moved into the Derby field after Todd Pletcher and Satish Sanan decided to hold out Lexington Stakes winner Behindatthebar for the Preakness, vowed to never let Ragozin Sheets or any other speed figures determine how he trains his horses. "Shove those numbers up their asses," Carroll said.


It's a funny, tongue-in-cheeck quiz about the USA's most famous race..but HORRORS, a big mistake in the answer for question 19......


Betcha Don't Know This Are you a Derby contender or pretender? Take this quiz and find out.

1. How often has the favorite won the Derby?

A. 76 percent of the time

B. 38 percent

C. 55 percent

D. 17 percent

2. Eleven horses have won the Triple Crown, and many have come close, winning two of the three races. One horse had a particularly improbable post-Derby run through the Preakness and Belmont. Name it.

3. Three Derby winners have had monikers related to food or drink. Name them.

4. In 1896, the Derby was shortened from 11/2 miles to 11/4. The fastest winner at that distance is Secretariat (1:59.4 in 1973). Which winner ran the slowest race?

5. What was the last year in which the Derby was not run on the first Saturday in May?

6. What letter begins the name of the most Derby winners?

7. What was the largest margin of victory in a Derby?

8. Before O.J. Simpson, who was the most notorious celebrity to attend the race?

9. Which U.S. president, past or present, attended the most Derbys?

10. True or false: "My Old Kentucky Home" has always been played just before the race.

11. The lowest payout for a Derby winner was $2.80 on a $2 bet. Name the winner(s).

12. What was the biggest Derby payout?

13. Derby winner or celebrity baby?

A. Sailor Lee

B. Joe Cotton

C. Little Pixie

D. Moxie Crimefighter

E. Pensive

F. Kauai King

G. Pilot Inspektor

H. Majestic Prince

I. Banjo

J. Seven Sirius

K. Blue Angel

L. Alysheba

14. Besides serving as a backdrop for drunken debauchery, the Churchill Downs infield has been used as an Army camp, as a potato farm and as a state fair midway. But what happened there on June 17, 1910?

15. What is the origin of the term "Winner's Circle?"

16. In 1997, Concerto finished ninth in the Derby. What made this otherwise ordinary horse stand out?

17. Queen Elizabeth II famously attended the 2007 Derby. But technically, she was not the first British monarch to attend the race. Who was?

18. Who is the bigger winner: trainer D. Wayne Lukas (the Derby) or competitive eater Takeru Kobayashi (Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest)?

19. Richard Nixon attended the Derby in 1968 while running for president. What was so ironic about that?

20. Has it ever snowed or sleeted on Derby Day?


1. B (51 out of 133)

2. Hansel, which finished 10th in the 1991 Derby but went on to win the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes.

3. Wintergreen (1909), Burgoo King (1932), Go For Gin (1994)

4. Stone Street (2:15.20 in 1908)

5. 1945. That January, the government shut down the racing business for the duration of World War II. The ban was lifted after the German surrender cleared the way for a later than normal Derby, on June 9.

6. The letter S, with 18 winners, including Street Sense in 2007

7. Eight lengths, by four winners: Old Rosebud (1914), Johnstown (1939), Whirlaway (1941) and Assault (1946)

8. According to Churchill Downs, in 1889, bank robber Frank James (Jesse's brother) attended the race.

9. President Gerald Ford, who attended the race almost every year from 1977 to 1987

10. False. According to Churchill Downs, the tradition reportedly began in 1921, when it was played before the 47th running of the Derby.

11. Count Fleet in 1943 and Citation in 1948

12. Donerail, which paid $184.90 in 1913. That would be $3,988.01 in today's money.

13. Horses: B, E, F, H, L; Celebrity babies: A (Christie Brinkley & Peter Cook), C (Bob Geldof & Paula Yates), D (Penn & Emily Jillette), G (Jason Lee & Beth Riesgraf), I (Rachel Griffiths & Patrick Taylor), J (Andre Benjamin & Erykah Badu), K (Dave "The Edge" Evans & Aislinn O'Sullivan)

14. The infield served as the runway for the first manned airplane flight in Kentucky.

15. Prior to becoming the formal landscaped area it is now, the Winner's Circle at early Derbys was a circle drawn on the track in chalk dust.

16. The horse belonged to New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner.

17. In 1951, the Duke of Windsor attended the race. He had served as England's king until abdicating the throne in 1936 so he could marry a divorcée.

18. Kobayashi (six-time Nathan's winner). Lukas has won the Derby four times.

19. The winner, Northern Dancer, (ACTUALLY, it's DANCER'S IMAGE)was disqualified for cheating. (Tests revealed a banned drug in his system.)

20. Yes. In 1989, sleet was reported to have fallen briefly at the track. Snow flurries were spotted the next day.


FORT ERIE, April 29 – A total of 75 horses will take part in Saturday’s opening day eight-race card at Fort Erie Race Track.

“We officially opened the entry box at 8am.” said Racing Secretary Tom Gostlin. “ It took awhile before the entries started rolling in but we closed the entry box on time with a pretty good opening day card.”

Trainer C. R. Johnston made the first entry of the year. Johnston entered King Konstantine in a four and one half furlong Maiden Allowance event for three-year-olds. Apprentice jockey Richard Morrow has the mount.

Fort Erie will race on Saturday and Sunday of this week to kick off the 80-day season. Starting on Sunday, May 11 the track will begin racing three days a week, Sunday through Tuesday.

Post time each racing day is 1:05pm.

The feature is an allowance/optional claimer featuringstakes winners - race 5.
TOTHEMOONANDBACK (Perigee Moon), ANOTHER ASCOT (Ascot Knight) and speedy V S O P PLEASE.
Classy LONG POND makes his first start since 2006 when he was claimed by Marko Mesic.


JOHN GUNTHER AND ROB CUDNEY'S homebred WEST OF GIBRALTER, who has been the workmate for Kentucky Derby starter Tale of Ekati, races in the 7th race at Churchill today, an allowance race for fillies who have not won 2 races. She is by Rock of Gibralter out of Western Reel by Gone West and was foaled in Ontario.

Four Board Stables' LOVE YOU CRAZY, who last raced in August at Woodbine, makes her 4yo debut in race 8 at Churchill. The Ontario bred by Touch Gold-Moonlight Affair is trained in Kentucky by Larry Lay.

QUEBEC CITY is an Ontario-bred 2yo colt debuting at CHURCHILL DOWNS TODAY (race 3) The colt is from the first crop of EVEN THE SCORE out of the On Target mare Perth Lassie and he is owned, and was bred, by Penny Lauer and Ralph Pierce.

Hard hitting Ontario bred LORD CARMEN is in race 9 for $80,000 claiming. The Ordway-Gregorian Winlow 7yo horse drops from an allowance race which was his first outing of the year. He was bred by Audrey Daniels and he's won $271,000.

The WHITE COLT, named PATCHEN PRINCE (Pioneering out of Patchen Beauty) makes his 2nd start today, in Churchill's 5th race).


THOROUGHBLOG answers questions when time permits...the dispute in the US over the Churchill signal continues...


  • At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I loved Gayego until he got to select 20th. What a shame.

  • At 7:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Photos from Wednesday morning workouts:


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Tuesday, April 29, 2008


POP-IN: DENIS OF CORK is in the Derby by (see Derby pics at


Woodbine opens up for a 4th day of racing a week tomorrow night with the first Wednesday evening.
The eight races have an average field size of about 10 horses per race.

The popular SCORE TV show will be on plus the contest to pick winners in conjunction with the SCORE, WOODBINE ENTERTAINMENT and RACINGWORLD TECHNOLOGY.


Get ready for another exciting 123racing competition season! The first competition of the year will be held on Wednesday, April 30th.

This year we've expanded our offerings to include TWO weekly competitions, each with $1000 in cash prizes to be won - that's $2000 in prizes up for grabs each and every week!

The Wednesday night competitions will again focus on the exciting race action of the Woodbine Thoroughbred races. Our NEW Monday competitions will revolve around the exhilarating Mohawk Standardbred races.

Your log-in information from last year's competitions will allow you to enter the competitions again this year. Simply click on the "LOGIN" button and enter your e-mail address and password. If you've forgotten your password you can click on the "Forgot your password?" link and you will be sent instructions regarding how to reset your password.

You can enter your picks for the first competition of the season starting on Monday, April 27th. Make sure that you enter your picks before the first race of the competition, which is set to go off at 6:45pm ET on Wednesday, April 30th. Wednesday night contests will be held on races 2-7 and Monday nights will be held on races 1-5.

Be sure to monitor your progress in the weekly competitions on the interactive Leaderboard at and be sure to watch Race Night on The Score every Monday night from 7-9pm and Wednesday night from 7-10pm for live updates on the competition.

Invite your family and friends to play with you and enjoy the excitement of the 123racing competitions every Monday and Wednesday until October 2008.

Enter at...

The featured race is an allowance, race 2, for Ontario sired fillies and mares,, non-winners of 2. MISS JUICEY, 2nd in her season debut, is a heavy 8 to 5 morning line favourite.


Saturday is a big day at Woodbine with the Kentucky Derby simulcast plus the QUEENSTON STAKES, the next major step to the QUEEN'S PLATE for the Canadian-bred 3yo's.
STUCK IN TRAFFIC (Kiridashi) is expected to try and give trainer Nick Gonzalez his 5th (!) stakes win of the meeting.
Stuck in Traffic will square off with arch rival Not Bourbon - they ran 1-2 in the Achievement earlier this month.
Not Bourbon and Stuck in Traffic will meet up with KESAGAMI, the Coronation Futurity winner who will have Jim McAleney aboard for the 7 furlong Queenston.
Other possibilities include several from trainer Mark Casse including Took the Time and East End Tap.

Also Saturday - a free seminar focussing on the Kentucky Derby and the Woodbine races will begin at 11 a.m. on the 2nd floor grandstand, east end.
Assistant to Steve Asmussen, STEVE FLINT, is expected to be the guest.


Padua Stables' BEHINDATTHEBAR and the filly PROUD SPELL will not be enterd in Saturday's Kentucky Derby so DENIS OF CORK and BOB BLACK JACK (blinkers on) will compete.


Here are some notes about each possible Derby starter and the editor's view on his/her Beyer Figure strength..

PYRO - Simple - if he hated Polytrack at Keeneland, he runs a 102-105 Beyer, good enough to win.

TALE OF EKATI - Canadian-owned colt is improving but see him only topping 98 at best

COLONEL JOHN - Sizzling workout of 57 4/5 aside, he had a top of 95 last time, could continue to go forward but I wouldn't predict it would be much higher than 98

GAYEGO - Topped at 103 last time in Ark. Derby, bettering 2 starts before when he ran a 102...lots of explosive moves in his form...102 range

BIG BROWN - a pair of 106's, he's the Beyer boss. Camp is very confident, but can you bet this speedball at 10 furlongs with the big crowd and hope he does not regress at all from the paired top?

DENIS OF CORK - Drew in yesterday. Easy to see he would bounce off the 96 in the Southwest when dull with the 88 in the Illinois Derby. Bounces back to 95-97

VISIONAIRE (photo above, from My LONGSHOT special. Bounces back to 98 in Gotham and moves forward perhaps - 100 Beyer works.

BIG TRUCK - Topped with the 93 in the Tampa Bay Derby, flopped on Poly in Blue Grass. Runs a 90 or so.

BOB BLACK JACK - Gets blinkers so who knows what he will do - he once ran a 20 4/5 first 2 furlongs - will he bury Big Brown early? He could run a mid to high 90.

SMOOTH AIR - A nice 2nd in the Florida Derby - spiked a temperature this week. Tab him for a 98..distance may be tricky.

COOL COAL MAN - Like Pyro etc., Polytrack may have been a bummer for him last time, he had a 92 and 98 before that. Could bounce back - 100 Beyer.

ANAK NAKAL - Topped at 87 last time behind Tale of Ekati, no.

EIGHT BELLES - The filly who has a top of 100 from 4 races ago and then is back on her way with a 91 and 99 last time. 100 for sure.

Z HUMOR - cycled up to a 94 last time...96 is tops

MONBA - bounced back in the Blue Grass with 92...not much higher

COURT VISION - matched previous top with a 90 in Wood Memorial,improving a bit - 95 predicted.

Z FORTUNE - Surged with new top of 102 last time. Comes down to 99-100

ADRIANO - Topped at 92 last time on the Polytrack at Turfway. 95 perhaps.

RECAPTURETHEGLORY - had an easy ride on the pace in Ill. Derby and posted top of 102. Can't see that happening again.

COWBOY CAL - Steady front runner - 93 predicted.



But there are a few days left to change picks!


LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Larry Jones says his wife and assistant trainer, Cindy, is giving Eight Belles pep talks.

"My wife keeps having these talks with her and telling her anything a man can do she can do better," said the trainer, holding court in front of Barn 43 on the Churchill Downs backstretch with tongue tucked in cheek.

Saturday afternoon, the filly Eight Belles will try to get the best of 19 male opponents in the 134th running of the Kentucky Derby.

She will be only the 39th filly to compete in America’s most coveted race and she will attempt to become the fourth winner, joining Regret (1915), Genuine Risk (1980) and Winning Colors (1988) in an elite sorority.

For a while, it appeared Jones would have a pair of queens in the Derby, with Proud Spell joining Eight Belles.

But on Monday, he said Proud Spell is going to run against fillies in Friday’s Kentucky Oaks, while "Eight Belles will enter both races but more than likely go to the Derby."

Hall of Fame trainer LeRoy Jolley, who prefaced Genuine Risk’s victory in the Derby with a 1975 triumph with the colt Foolish Pleasure, believes Eight Belles physically fits the profile of a Derby winner.

"LeRoy came over to our barn to look at both fillies," Jones said. "He looked at Eight Belles and he told me: ‘Run her! She fits.’

"LeRoy said she’s definitely a lot bigger than Genuine Risk was. I also got to speak to (Hall of Fame trainer) Wayne Lukas about Winning Colors. He doesn’t think Eight Belles is as large as Winning Colors but he said she’s close. The only suggestion Wayne had was to try her one time against the boys before the Derby."

But, unlike Winning Colors, Genuine Risk and Regret, Eight Belles, will be facing male foes for the first time in the Derby. A winner of all four of her starts this year, she has a nine-race career of five victories, two seconds and a third.

"Eight Belles would be the favorite in the Oaks, and now Proud Spell (who has four wins, two places and a show in seven starts) will be the favorite," Jones said. "I think it might be just as hard for her to try to beat Proud Spell as it will be to try to beat the boys.

© 2008, Chicago Tribune. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.


A field of 11 is expected to race for $500,000..
A to the Croft, Calvin Borel;
Absolutely Cindy, Brian Hernandez Jr.;
Awesome Chic, Robby Albarado;
Bsharpsonata, Eric Camacho;
Country Star, Rafael Bejarano;
Golden Doc A, Kent Desormeaux;
Proud Spell, Gabriel Saez;
Elusive Lady, Eibar Coa;
Rasierra, Jamie Theriot;
Little Belle, Rajiv Maragh;
Pure Clan, Edgar Prado.



On April 29, Barbaro’s birthday, there will be a national effort to urge Congress to support the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, to stop American horses being transported to Canada and Mexico where they are being slaughtered for human consumption.

While the Humane Society of the United States focuses on targeted grassroots outreach to certain individual members of Congress, HSUS has asked us to take a special part in this effort which will be to focus our energy on the biggest impediment to this essential legislation being passed in the Senate—Larry Craig, who has put a hold on the bill.

We are calling on our members (FOB's) to bombard Senator Craig’s office with phone calls on April 29 urging him to allow S. 311 to move forward. If enough people participate, we could shut down his phone lines for the day in a massive show of force, demonstrating just how many people support the bill he is undemocratically blocking.

Today, April 29, please call Senator Craig’s office at 202-224-2752 and tell the aide answering the phone: “I’m calling to ask that Senator Craig allow S. 311, the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, to move forward.”

Debra and Shelley - Americans Against Horse Slaughter


  • At 9:54 AM, Anonymous Huntmaster said…

    Hi Jen,

    I see you included Gayego in your list of Derby picks, but not in your poll. I would not be surprised to see him hit the board on Saturday.

    Does anybody else out there think the field should be reduced to 16 for the Derby?

  • At 11:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    to Huntsmaster

    The derby is a winner's race, the more the merrier!

  • At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The field limit of 20 is fine it's the graded earnings criteria that needs changing.

    2yr old earnings should not count the same as for 3 yr old earnings and neither should earnings in lower graded stakes.

    The Delta Jackpot is a perfect example of too much money given to horses not up to a Grade one standard!

  • At 2:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yes, the Derby field probably should be reduced in some way. It often seems to resemble a calvary charge more than a race. Reducing the field size may also keep some horses out of the race that have no business being there but for the sake of somebody having a Derby starter.

    I also really like Gayego's chances on Saturday.

    On another note, is anyone having trouble getting the Racing123 contest page to load?

  • At 6:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey jen...i heard something along the lines of the derby simulcast not going as planned because of some kind of dispute horsemen in the south are having...any news on this...??

  • At 6:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 9:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey, here is the site i was talking about where i made the extra cash, I was making about $900 extra a month...
    check it out ..


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Monday, April 28, 2008



You could see the little filly was so very tired.
After chasing a hot pace and then fighting hard with a rival down the stretch, SHILLA

edged clear to win the FURY STAKES yesterday at Woodbine for her 5th win in her 7th start.

The Marquetry-Papoose, Apalachee bay needed everything she could find to get past

the much-hyped GLORIOUSLY to win the 7 furlong race for Ontario foaled 3yo fillies.
Shilla is certainly at the head of the class for the Woodbine Oaks now with that brave


(Thanks to reader LOU M for the pic!)
Her Beyer Figure was 81 for the time of 1:24.

Owned and bred by Brian Cullen, who has been in racing for more than 40 years, Shilla

finally did go off as the expected favourite for the Fury.

After the race, she was hosed down by jockey David Clark before returning to the

winner's circle and her awaiting family.

Nick Gonzalez said Shilla would be nominated to the Selene Stakes (closes Wed. night)

but he would decide to see if the filly bounces back sharply enough. Otherwise, he

could go into the Oaks directly.

Gloriously ran hard and well for Woodford Racing but she was cooked in the predicted

duel with Dowd Chapel, who was 1 for 1 in her career.

The latter was more than 5 lengths back in 3rd place.

FIVE Morning line favourites won the 10 races yesterday on a fairly formful afternoon.
It was a good day for my TORONTO STAR PICKS - 6 WINNERS...

$2.5 MILLION was bet (just like Friday) on the card.

The logical winners started early...

CHOREOGRAPHY, classy and game at the age of 8, became a 2 time winner at the

meeting with his hard fought score for $10,000 claiming. The Foxtrail gelding won a

cavalry charge to the wire over 9-year-old FIRE THE FIRM, making his first start of the year.

PIKER'S HOPE led from start to finish under Steve Bahen to win race 2 for the partnership of Uri Fishman and friends and trainer Tony Mattine.
The Pikepass Ontario bred, out of Hope's Hope, was making his first start of the year.

Jeff Begg's THUMBIN A RIDE won the allowance event, race 3, for fillies and mares, taking advantage of a mad pace battle between Fight the Storm and Only If Split. The lattere held for 2nd.
Thumbin a Ride was bought recently by Begg's Windways Farm and she is by Point Given out of Sweet Jen by Full Out.

Anyone who saw KIERNAN'S LEGACY'S first race of the season earlier this month knew he was a big factor in race 4. Still, at 10 to 1, the fans were not convinced that the Pergiee Moon-Regal Crown gelding's rally first time out this year was the real deal.
Well, the Audre Cappuccitti runners are the real deal this spring.
The gelding had a nice ride from Suny Singh, plus a very fast pace set by Texas Blitz, and he rallied for a smart score in 58 2/5.

Another nice winner was SIT STILL, a Domasca Dan filly owned and trainer by Roger Hasmatali, who won a maiden allowance for ONtario sired fillies. The gal was making her 2nd start of the year and cutting back in distance and she rallied in mid stretch under Danny David to beat out the very fast Tree Lo...

Trainer Mark Casse and the Woodford Racing had a win on the card before Gloriously lost the Fury.
CAPTAIN CUGAT took a ton of late betting support to go to 8 to 5 and he broke like a bullet from the gate and then led all the way under Pat Husbands. The grey King Cugat gelding was making his 2nd start of the year and was switching from turf to Polytrack.

Jim McAleney, subbing for Eurico Da Silva who booked off yesterday, was dropped by Michael's Bad Boy in post parade, the gelding ran loose and then was scratched.

The Casse team made some noise before race 8. Its first-time starter, INCREDIBULLMRBIGGS, a long, tall and flashy chestnut colt, debuted at a surprising 5 to 2 on the odds board.
Interestingly, the colt had had so many workouts one had to wonder why it was taking so long to get him to a race. Anyway, he was bet heavily in a big field and well...trailed throughout.

The winner was MENIFEE SIX, a longshot but well bred, who was listed as 1st time Lasix on the early entries but that was corrected and he was not 1st time Lasix. The Menifee colt, owned by Len Zenith's Uphill Stable, is trained by Red Johnson. He had a 3-4 wide stalking trip under Emma Wilson and then reeled in front running Pronger in deep stretch.

The biggest surprise of the day came when ARCHERS ALYANCER, a 6yo Archers Bay gelding, rallid late to win the 9th race, a tough allowance/optional claimer for $80K types.
The gelding, owned by Dennis Payer, had not won a race since July of 2006 (old main track, in the slop) but he was 2nd in the Sir Barton Stakes on Polytrack in December.
Winter raced in nothing but stakes races, the gelding was dropping in class and perhaps was just overlooked by all of us.
He is trained by John Simms

The Dave Cotey barn got its first win of the year when DANZATHRUTHENIGHT rallied in time to win the last race, a maiden $32,000 claiming race. The One Way Love filly beat Full Weather in the late few strides (Full Mandate filly, 1st Lasix for Danny Vella).


Reports from Calder say GINGER BREW is on her way to the Selene Stakes.
Ginger Brew, an Ontario-bred daughter of Milwaukee Brew, won the 9 furlong Calder Oaks on grass on Saturday.
"She'll go back to Canada," said Lynch, "where the goal for her is the Woodbine Oaks ($500,000 Canadian on June 8), although she'll (run) in the Selene Stakes before that."

Anyone see that bizarre race from Canadian-bred BELLEPLAINE last week at Aqueduct?
The Eugene Melnyk-Tom Albertrani trained filly had her mouth open wide the entire race, was checked steadied rated guzzled what-have-you all the way until she could not compete anymore. Strange.

KENTUCKY DERBY WEEK... today PYRO WORKED.... from THE BLOOD HORSE Triple Crown Mania site...


Pyro was timed in :49 4/5 for his four furlong work, getting fractional splits of :13 1/5, :25 3/5, and :38. He galloped out five-eighths of a mile in 1:03 2/5. Z Fortune, runner-up to Zayego in the Arkansas Derby (gr. II), did not go as fast as his stablemate, working the half-mile in :51. He had fractional times of :13 3/5, :26 1/5, and :38 4/5. Asmussen, who saddled Curlin to finish third in last year’s Derby, analyzed the works for the media throng that gathered outside Barn 38 early Monday morning. “Z Fortune went over the track well and went through the stretch nicely,” Asmussen said. “Pyro is a keener individual who is a lot more playful who also went over the track well. The track was in excellent shape this morning and they seemed to come out of it in good shape.”

AND COLONEL JOHN WORKED in 57 and change - yowza...from the Blood-Horse...

“He went very well,” Elliott Walden of owner Winstar said. “I don’t think it was too fast considering we’re six days out (from the Derby). We feel very comfortable about it. “The track is very ‘live’ this morning,” Walden continued. “We had quite a few horses work fast today. I clocked (Oaks hopeful) Proud Spell in :58 and one. Eight Bells went in :58 and one, too. Good horses work fast. He handled the dirt – that was a good indicator. The rider never moved and she felt he handled the surface well.”

Derby Hopefuls' Graded Earnings
Rank Horse Graded Earnings Rank Horse Graded Earnings
1 Pyro $1,020,000 13 Cool Coal Man212,767
2 Tale of Ekati $738,000 14 Anak Nakal $212,216
3 Colonel John $720,000 15 Eight Belles $210,000
4 Gayego $640,000 16 Cowboy Cal $207,660
5 Big Brown $600,000 17 Behindatthebar $202,500
6 Z Humor $579,000 18 Visionaire $202,500
7 Monba $515,000 19 Big Truck $194,500
8 Court Vision $331,872 20 Bob Black Jack $180,000
9 Z Fortune $329,000 21 Denis of Cork $165,000
10 Adriano $310,000 22 Halo Najib $157,996
11 Recapturetheglory $300,000 23 Indian Sun $154,000
12 Smooth Air $290,000 24 Tomcito $151,292

Diamond prospector's gem will 'run for the roses'
Canadian millionaire's prized three-year-old thoroughbred, Tale of Ekati, earns a start in Saturday's Triple Crown race


VANCOUVER -- The tale of the Ekati diamond mine is Canadian lore, a story of two dogged geologists discovering riches in the remote reaches of the Northwest Territories and igniting the largest mineral-staking rush in North American history.
But the tale of another Ekati is also compelling. Canadian millionaire Charles (Chuck) Fipke, Canada's most famous prospector, has been in the horse-racing game since 1981, a full decade before unearthing the famous diamond mine some 300 kilometres northeast of Yellowknife. This month, Mr. Fipke has hit another jackpot, and in horse racing it is almost as rare as finding precious stones near the Arctic Circle.
His prized three-year-old, Tale of Ekati, will "run for the roses" Saturday at the 134th
Kentucky Derby, North America's most prestigious thoroughbred race.
It is the first
time in more than a quarter-century of owning and breeding thoroughbreds that the Kelowna-based businessman has had a horse worthy of starting a Triple Crown race. "Nobody deserves it more than Chuck," said Jack Werk, a California bloodstock adviser who manages Mr. Fipke's stable. "
He has put a lot of money into this business.
This is his other great passion in life."
The tale of this Ekati begins in November, 2004, at the annual Keeneland sale in
Kentucky, where Mr. Fipke arrived determined to purchase a mare named Silence Beauty, whose sire was Sunday Silence, the 1989 Derby winner. Mr. Fipke believed the mare would be ideal to breed with his stallion, Canadian champion Perfect Soul, and paid $525,000 (U.S.) for her. That Silence Beauty was with in-utero foal was of little concern to her new owner.
A year later, Mr. Fipke received a call from trainer J.B. McKathan, who was breaking the yearling in Ocala, Fla. Mr. McKathan said that Silence Beauty's son was an impressive runner and worthy of racing. Mr. Fipke then delivered the horse to Derby-winning trainer Barclay Tagg, but not before a conversation with Mr. Werk. "He called me to wish me happy birthday and we just started talking horses," Mr. Werk said. "He was really excited because this [yearling] was his best horse, and I said: 'You've really got to come up with a good name.' "All of a sudden, it dawned on me - Tale of Ekati - because the story of Chuck finding the diamond mine is one of the great stories of all time. There is dead silence on the other line and about three or four seconds later, he breaks out laughing and says, 'That's it!' "
Reached this week, Mr. Fipke played down his sudden good fortune. Friends say that he is an "in-the-moment" personality, and that the immensity of heading to Louisville with a legitimate contender won't hit him until he is sitting in an owner's box beneath the famous twin spires of Churchill Downs.
"I try not to get too pepped up because you can get cut right down with horses," the Edmonton native said. "If it happens, it happens."
In 1981, the year he bought his first horse, Mr. Fipke began searching for diamonds near Lac de Gras, NWT, with geologist Stewart Blusson. It was an unlikely prospect, rarer than winning a Derby, especially with the giant diamond operators DeBeers also in the chase. A decade later, Mr. Fipke and Mr. Blusson discovered a kimberlite pipe under Point Lake and extracted 81 diamonds from a site near the present-day mine. Kimberlite is a form of rock that can contain diamonds.
Ten years ago, the mine's bounty began paying
dividends and financing Mr. Fipke's horse-racing interests.
Mr. Fipke owns 10 per cent of the mine, which is predicted to yield annual revenue of more than $400-million, and has a net worth estimated at more than $500-million, according to a 2007 Canadian Business magazine report.
He donated $6-million to his
alma mater, the University of British Columbia, in 2006 and also made headlines in 2000 when wife Marlene received what was believed to be a Canadian record divorce settlement of roughly $123-million, or 23 per cent of Dia Met Minerals Ltd., the company founded by Mr. Fipke.




It will take an act of God for Kentucky Bear to get into the Kentucky Derby, which is a shame considering the way the lightly raced but extremely talented son of Mr. Greeley worked over the Churchill Downs strip Saturday morning. With jockey Jamie Theriot aboard, Kentucky Bear worked five furlongs in 59.51 seconds shortly after the renovation break.
The move was the fastest on a tab that
included leading Kentucky Derby contender Gayego. But it wasn't the final time that made the drill so impressive, it was the way Kentucky Bear came roaring down the stretch, covering his final quarter-mile in 23.06 before galloping out six furlongs in 1:12.23 and seven-eighths in 1:25.42.
"I was thrilled by the work, but it makes you a little more aggravated that he probably won't get into the race," said trainer Reade Baker as he prepared to board a Saturday flight back to Canada. "We'll enter him for the Derby on Wednesday and hope for a miracle.
If he doesn't get in, we'll take him back to Keeneland and stay for a week
before shipping to Pimlico for the Preakness."
Graded stakes earnings are used to determine entrance into the Derby if more than 20
horses are entered. Kentucky Bear has $75,000 in graded earnings and as of Saturday was 34th on the list of horses being pointed to the race. Kentucky Bear was an easy maiden winner when he launched his career at Gulfstream Park this winter.
Following a seventh-place finish in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth,
Kentucky Bear rebounded with a game third-place effort in the Grade 1 Blue Grass.
"He bled in Florida, after which we gave him a little time off, and maybe he wasn't quite
fit enough at the end of the Blue Grass," said Baker. "But he's gained about 50 pounds since that race.
He looks spectacular and is starting to remind me more and more of
Afleet. "You know, the most disappointing aspect of this whole eligibility thing is that probably five or six horses who'll get into the Derby peaked well before this and are on the downturn right now, but they have the earnings and we don't."
- additional reporting by David Grening and Mike Welsch

from the Niagara Falls Review

Horse racing is such an unpredictable sport. The old saying is: "There are 100 ways to lose a race and only one way to win - be under the wire first."
But as the Fort Erie Race Track prepares for its 111th season beginning May 3, there
are two 100 per cent guarantees: Last year's champion jockey and trainer will not make it two in a row. Robbie King, the top rider in 2006 and 2007, has retired at age 43 to become secretary/manager of the Jockeys Benefit Association of Canada.
And Mark Fournier, 36, a Welland native who led all trainers with 46 trips to the
winner's circle, mostly for perennial leading owner Bruno Schickedanz in 2007, has been promoted to handle Schickedanz's stable at Woodbine.
Moving into Fournier's spot is Kevin Buttigieg, who has made his mark as a high-percentage trainer, but with a much smaller stable. Last year at Fort Erie, Buttigieg appeared in the winner's circle just twice.
This time around, he was expected to equal or exceed that total in just one or two days
- certainly within the first two or three weeks of the 2008 season. In 2007, Buttigieg had a one-man, four-horse stable and owned most of his stock, which added two seconds and four thirds in 15 starts. This year, he's in charge of the 20-plus Schickedanz stable, the Fort's leading owner 10 times in the last 11 years. "
Training thoroughbreds is my passion, it's all I'm doing. It's a seven-day,
24-hour-a-day thing," said Buttigieg. "I want to have a good year, win some races, and keep my owner happy. If I'm leading trainer, so be it."
Also missing from the Fort's backstretch is trainer Layne Giliforte, the champion from
2000 to 2005 and runner-up in 2006, who has moved his runners to the Maryland circuit. King is just one of nearly a dozen regular jockeys to have vacated the Fort's jockeys' room in the last couple of years because of retirement or other reasons. Jocko Lauzon, who overcame serious injuries to resume his career, has now retired permanently after 1,620 wins, including two in the Queen's Plate.
He is now the agent for rider David
Brian Bochinski has left racing to work for the postal service and Happy Ando, a native of Japan, has a non-racing job in Hong Kong.
Maree Richards, Sovereign Award apprentice in 1989, ended a 10-year retirement in 2006, but an injury marred last season and she is now an assistant trainer for the John Simms stable.
Richards, like past Fort jockey champions Steve O'Brien and Jorge Pizarro, continues
to ride morning work outs, as does Tyrone Harding, who retired in 2005. Other Fort regulars who have retired or moved to other tracks recently include Francine Villenueve, Neil Pozansky, Melissa Polkey and Jake Barton.
After the two-day opening weekend May 3 and 4, racing will be conducted Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays through the end of the season, Oct. 28. Saturday racing will be added July 19, Aug. 30 and Oct. 25. The Prince of Wales Stakes, the highlight of the season, will be held July 13.


  • At 9:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    What a visual joy to watch the video feed of the running of the races at Pimlico. A job well done!! It puts the fans/patrons right there in the middle of all the action. No guessing is required with respect to the winner of the race or in the order of finish. It is truly a model to be copied by other racing facilities.


  • At 2:25 PM, Anonymous Daryl G. Ezra said…

    To Anon:
    You would only give your horses to train to 5 horsemen at Woodbine,
    suggesting the others should go to Fort Erie tells me how ignorant to the sport you are. We are in the very early stages of the 2008 season.
    I don't have all day to comment, however, John Simms who trains in Fort Erie sent out a winner at Woodbine yesterday, Paula Loescher had a winner and a second this season at Woodine, Tony Adamo is 1 for 1 at Woodbine. Fort Erie based trainer
    Henry Whalen won at Woodbine as well as Armin Concessie. Don
    McRae has posted a pair of wins and a 2nd and a 3rd from 4 starts. These stats are from the top of my head, there may be more. This has been the worst spring to get horses legged up at Fort Erie with the main track not opening until April 3rd.
    Last season training mostly from Fort Erie racetrack, in a 20 race stint from the fall of 2006 until the summer of 2007 I won 10 races with several 2nds and 3rds.
    Fort Erie trainers charge around $55 a day much less than Woodbine trainers.
    There are good and bad horsemen at both Woobine and Fort Erie. Fort Erie is a wonderful place to train thoroughbreds. Great atmosphere, and a quality race track to train on.
    Many Horsemen in Fort Erie are not here because they have to be, we CHOOSE to be here.
    If you really have an opinion don't hide behind Anon. Just for the record the Leading Trainer at Woodbine so far this season including 4 stake wins is a trainer with a string at Woodbine and Fort Erie. In case you are wondering who it is .... it is the Fort Erie based Nick Gonzalez.

  • At 4:27 PM, Anonymous Cangamble said…

    Regarding the alleged race fixing allegations, I posted some info on it, including a link to the CBC News video report.

  • At 8:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Why does everyone get so up in arms about people posting as "anonymous"

    would posting under the name John or Tim or Jason make you any less anonymous? Just concentrate on the comments. Who cares who posts them.


Post a Comment

Sunday, April 27, 2008


DERBY PREP - AP photo of GAYEGO'S WORK at CHURCHILL yesterday...

106 BEYER FOR HARLEM ROCKER Faster than most American 3yos....where will he race next??
Trainers and owners with Queen's Plate prospects for 2008 are hoping they never see Canadian-bred HARLEM ROCKER.
The grey Macho Uno colt (Macho Uno sired the winner of the Derby Trial yesterday too, Macho Again) romped in the 4-horse Withers Stakes and ran fast, 106 Beyer Figure in his 3rd win from 3 starts.
"He's never been 2 turns yet," said Sid Attard yesterday, who trains Kesagami, the Coronation Futurity winner from last year.
True, the colt has only won at one-mile twice and a sprint and his pedigree on his dam's side is strictly sprinting.
No official word has come from anyone about the colt's next start - the Plate Trial and then the Plate are mentioned but since HARLEM ROCKER ran a 106, faster than the 3yo's in the Kentucky Derby other than Big Brown, it would not be surprising if he went to the Preakness/

CANADIAN CHAMPION KODIAK KOWBOY (not Canadian-bred) was a gritty 2nd in the Derby Trial yesterday before Macho Again.
Turf War, trained by mark Casse and ridden by Pat Husbands, was a lethargic second-last.

STAKES SCORE A BREWIN Ginger brew surges to head of Oaks class.

Canadian-breds are kicking butt everywhere.
And Stronach Stables are thriving too -it has the faves for the PLATE AND OAKS!
GINGER BREW, a Canadian-bred 3yo filly by Milwaukee Brew-Croal Necklace, Conquistador Cielo, won the CALDER OAKS at Calder yesterday, worth $200,000.
Trained by Brian Lynch, the chestnut miss won by 1 1/4 lengths and ran 1 1/8 miles on the grass in 1:47.24
It was her 2nd win in 5 races.
Her Beyer Figure was 93.
Ginger Brew was bought back for $65,000 at the Adena 2yo sale last year.

Stronach Stable's got a maiden win out of its regally bred filly BE GLORIOUS (Red Bullet-Primarily, by Lord At War (Arg),a half-sister CITRONNADE (G1, $864,205), WHISKEY WISDOM (G3, $452,824),POETICALLY ($561,158) and PRIMALY ($378,770) at Hollywood yesterday.


No one could watch the Calder races at Woodbine yesterday...

Simulcasting curtailed

A dispute between Calder and horsemen resulted in a severely curtailed betting menu Saturday, a situation that could continue indefinitely. Horsemen in Kentucky, Delaware, Maryland and Ohio denied permission to allow their races to be simulcast into Florida, a right granted them by the Interstate Horse Racing Act. Among the cards blacked out was opening day at Churchill Downs. This leaves next week's Kentucky Derby and Oaks simulcasts under a cloud.

The action follows South Florida horsemen denying Calder, which opened Monday, permission to send its races out of state. About 90 percent of the total handle comes from out-of-state simulcast sites. As a result, Calder had instituted a 30 percent cut in purses, effective today.

At issue nationwide is the percentage of wagers made over the phone and Internet that will go to purses. Currently, horsemen get about 25 percent. They are demanding approximately 33 percent.

LEGAL MOVE proved he is the best sprinter in Ontario with another decisive score. The Bold Executive colt, a $30,704 yearling purchase by Woodford Racing, paired up 96 Beyer Figures with his score in yesterday's Jacques Cartier Stakes, scordching 6 furlongs in 1:08.63, just 7/100 off the track record.
On a windy day and on a fast Polytrack, Legal Move had a new rider in Simon Husbands, brother of Patrick (who rode at Churchill Downs yesterday) but that didn't matter.
The Gardiner Farms bred 4yo rallied in the stretch as he did when he won the prep and
edged a game Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk by 1 3/4 lengths.
The latter chased from the rail all the way after a bad start and stayed on well.
Ballado Dancer and Sail From Seattle fried each other in the pace duel and slipped back.
"It's been a long time since I won a stakes race," said Husbands, who does a lot of work nowadays with his brother and trainer Mark Casse.
"He's a nice horse and worked great coming into the prep," said Husbands, who won his first added-money race since 2005, when he partnered Sophia's Prince to victory in the Shepperton Stakes. "I was just a passenger."
"So far things have gone really well for this horse," said assistant conditioner Ricky Griffith. "He has turned into man. He's not very tall, but he's very stout, like a pit bull. The horse came here from Florida in great shape. He came here ready to run."
It was thought the colt would not race yesterday and instead wait for the May 10 New Providence Stakes.
Legal Move returned $7.90, $4.20, $3.40, combining with Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk($7.70, $4.70) for a $76.70 exactor. Sail From Seattle ($4.20) rounded out a $368.90 triactor.

It was a good day for trainer NOEL RANDALL won won races 6 and 7 on the card for 2 differeent owners.
Randall made a shrewd claim with DOUBLE COLICO on April 18 as the 4yo colt was offered for $32,000 by Steve Asmussen, won with a 95 Beyer and then doubled up yesterday for $60,000.
He ran an 85 Beyer yesterday in his 5 1/2 furlong win in 1:03.
Winston Penny owns.

Albert Sanges owns CAPITAL OFFENSE, a Florida bred 3yo who looked good winning his maiden for $47,500 yesterday. The Arrested colt, claimed for $40,000 form his debut from trainer Mark Casse, was making his 2nd start of the season.


Trainer ALEC FEHR and owner Terry Hamilton dished out $62,500 for Victoria Bay at Gulfstream earlier this month and she won back almost all of that yesterday in her allowance score. It was the Northern Afleet filly's first outing on anything but grass.

BOMARC won race 2 in front running fashion under Eurico Da Silva for Richard McMaster, Gemini Farm and trainer Ralph Biamonte. The gelding won his finale in December and doubled up for $20K yesterday. He's by Lite the Fuse.

A super strtech duel in race 3, an allowance event for fillies and mares, resulted in UNREAL ROCKET slowly wearing down BEAR BULLET TOO at the end of 7 furlongs.
The Rocket, who earned an 83 Beyer yesterday for 7 furlongs in 1:22 and change, was winning for the 6th time in 26 starts.
She is an Illinois bred by Unreal Zeal and Red Johnson trains for MES Stable.

MOON RUCKUS won his maiden for Rocco d'Alimonte and Frank Annechinni IN RACE 4. The Perigee Moon 4yo who races with his head high,was a bit erratic yesterday, leaping and jumping a bit on the turn and he seemed reluctant to go past the leader in deep stretch but finally did.

He was bred by Warren and Kate Byrne in Ontario.

MIKE DOYLE came close to winning 2 of the last 3 races. He dropped in SHE CAN'T WAIT to win the 8th for Duar Racing and himself but eaton Hall's TOBAR came up 1/2 a length short in the last race for maidens.
Tobar could not catch up to TORCHY KINSHASA, from the hot Audre Cappuccitti barn, who was dropping from $32K to $9,500 for his season debut. He is a homebred by Kinshasa.

MORT HARDY's HYDETHETREASURE won the 9th with a long, sustained rally through the stretch to get past a very tough U R ENERGY. Hydethetreasure is an Ontario bred by Bold 'n Flashy out of Cherokee Treasure, bred by Bill Graham.

Today is the last day as an apprentice rider for Tyler Pizarro.
The rider has a handful of mounts today and will begin his career as a journeyman on Wednesday, the first wed. card of the season.
Friday is the last day as a bug rider for DEAN DEVERELL.

Today's card is much better than yesterday's and the FURY STAKES, a restricted event for 3yo fillies foal in Ontario, could be a step for some to the Woodbine Oaks in June.

SHILLA HAS HER TOUGHEST TEST YET. The Marquetry filly, owned and bred by Brian Cullen, won the La Voyageuse in her season debut with a 78 Beyer Figure, a low number for the class.
Today she meets undefeated GLORIOUSLY, a very fast, headstrong gal by Indian Charlie who is 2 for 2 and won at Keeneland last time with an 85 Beyer Figure.
That gal figures to get softened up by DOWD CHAPEL, 1 for 1 in her career thanks to a score at Oaklawn with a 91 Beyer Figure.
The race should set up nicely for SHILLA with perhaps the Florida trained WIND IN MY WINGS picking up some pieces.

PEPPER IS SALTY FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS.. New Mexico horse wins 16th consecutive race

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Peppers Pride became the sixth thoroughbred ever to win 16 straight races with a two-length victory on Saturday.

The 5-year-old, New Mexico-bred mare ran the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:17 at SunRay Park to take the $75,000 Russell and Helen Foutz Distaff Handicap.

A daughter of Desert God, Peppers Pride joined Citation, Cigar, Mister Frisky, Hallowed Dreams and Got Country Grip as the only other horses in North America to win 16 races in a row with a saddled jockey.

"I don't know what intangibles it takes for an athlete to be great," trainer Joel Marr said in the winner's circle. "But whatever that is, she has it."

Jockey Carlos Madeira has been aboard Peppers Pride for each of the 16 victories.

"It was kind of a rough trip," Madeira said after Saturday's race in which Peppers Pride was the favorite. "But once she settled down and got away from that horse on the turn, she settled beautifully on the fence and she was going very well at that point."

Peppers Pride outraced Bossy Bush in the final 100 yards to increase her lifetime earnings to more than $861,000 for owner Joseph Allen.

Marr said he didn't want to commit to what race Peppers Pride will run in next, when she will attempt to break the all-time record with 17 consecutive wins.

At Oklahoma City in April, Got Country Grip lost by a head in the 5-year-old Oklahoma-bred gelding's bid for a record-setting 17th straight win.

Peppers Pride has faced only New Mexico-bred competition and has yet to travel out of state during the record streak.

"If it was so easy to do, then there would be a hundred horses with the record," Marr said.
Copyright © 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

By Jennie Rees • • April 27, 2008 It's the ultimate in looking at the world through rose-colored glasses…

Three days before entries are taken Wednesday for Saturday's 134th Kentucky Derby, the owners of 30 horses remain willing to pay $50,000 in entry fees -- plus probably at least that much for tickets, hotels and bad mint juleps -- for the right to come away with only a $150 keepsake saddle towel if their horse finishes up the track at Churchill Downs.

But the owners -- and even a lot of the trainers -- believe their horses have the ability to wear the garland of roses. Here we help them make their cases why they can win -- tempered with a dose of reality why they can't.

Why: He is classy, bred for the distance, has more stalking speed if needed than some think, is 1 for 1 at Churchill and never has run poorly on dirt. Throw out his Polytrack Blue Grass.

Why not: No horse in modern times has finished 10th in his final prep and won the Derby. He has not improved his speed figures at age 3 the way typical Derby winners do.
Proud Spell

Why: She's wonderfully consistent, is by a Derby runner-up (Proud Citizen), and this is not a strong bunch of colts.

Why not: These colts are better than their reputations. No filly has won the Derby without previously racing against the boys. No Derby winner has won without first racing at 11/8 miles since Middleground in 1950. She's most likely running in the Oaks anyway.
Tale of Ekati

Why: How many times have we seen the horse that a jockey doesn't pick (Edgar Prado chose Adriano instead) win the Derby? Barclay Tagg knows a Derby horse when he sees one. His 2- and 3-year-old form is the type that captures the roses.

Why not: He's not fast enough. The Wood finish was dreadfully slow.

Colonel John

Why: His Santa Anita Derby was one of the most impressive pre.....

read more at (see link at right on the sidebar)


  • At 8:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    My Jen Dont you worry my dear Shilla will be ready as ever and she will be ready for any challenge that will come her way! Go Shilla Go!!!!!! Ill be taking Paddock shots of her today for you because everyone loves to see a winner. Thanks Lou M.

  • At 9:09 AM, Anonymous Cangamble said…

    The Withers is up on Youtube already.
    The Rocker looked impressive. I embedded the race on my blog.

  • At 9:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I am currently watching CBC Sunday Morning and it is reporting on some allegedly corrupt Toronto Police Officers on a drug squad . One of the allegations is that one of the officers was dealing drugs with a trainer at Woodbine , and was betting on "FIXED" races at Woodbine. I wonder if WEG will have any comment ?

  • At 10:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We need some new blood in the Bug Rider's department. With Dean and Tyler gone that only leaves one bug that I would use, Melanie Pinto and she's still pretty green.

  • At 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Follow up on the CBC Sunday story it will re-air at 4.00am on Monday , so it is there to be recorded . The "fixed races" part of the story was almost casually mentioned by Carole Macneil of the CBC .There was some brief race footage shown as the background to her commentary .This was not part of the main story , and no documentation of the facts behind the assertion that "fixed" races took place at Woodbine were given . I guess those not familiar with horseracing feel they can drop this kind of a bombshell with no corresponding evidence and it will ring true to the general public . First , it is alleged in the piece that the corrupt cop is betting on fixed races , then in her follow up to the person she is interviewing Carole Macneil says the cop was doing drugs and "fixing races". Where is the proof ? Horseracing is maligned enough without , these kind of sensational and unproven allegations .Assertion of a fact should not be sufficient , as evidence it occurred . Members of the horseracing media community should contact Ms.Macneil , and have her provide her evidence of the alleged fixed races at Woodbine.

  • At 2:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Great to see Feline Fury win for Dr. Creer. Always extra special to win with a homebred.

  • At 5:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Can anybody tell me why almost no one is using DosRamos in the afternoons? What am I missing?

  • At 6:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We also need some new trainers at Woodbine too, there is only 5 that I would send my horses to, the rest should think about going to fort erie.

  • At 6:49 AM, Anonymous Steve said…


    Not being used because he can't win!
    The other day he rode so poorly I wondered why he still rides. After so many years, he should know to conserve his horse....not get caught up in a speed duel with 5 other horses.

    Keep smilin' Ricky! the only pics you'll be taking is with the family. That's not too bad though.

  • At 4:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Back in 2002 we had a nice filly by the name of Mulrainy....
    Her mother Malbay and Shilla's mother are full sisters!!
    So I am now a shilla fan and congrats to Brian Cullen (breeder of all)
    Steve Roberts
    Wings of Erin Farm

  • At 11:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Now is it nessasary to post bashes on a guy like Richard Dos Ramos? probly one of the most dignified gentleman you could ever meet, yes he is getting up there in age and his business is not what it was, he has accomplished more than most and stays level headed to day the least. There are not many guys like Rick he is a true patriot of this sport and he doesn't deserve to be bashed.

  • At 11:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    To the 'anon' who has a problem with Dosramos.....maybe you mr.anon should take out your jocks license and show everybody how its done?

  • At 8:14 AM, Anonymous Cangamble said…

    "If you wanna get famous, bet on Richard Dos Ramos"

    -Peter Gross (on Citypulse News, 1981)


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Saturday, April 26, 2008




HARLEM ROCKER is the current Canadian-bred sensation as the Macho Uno colt went 3 for 3 in his career with a decisive score in the WITHERS STAKES today over 3 rivals.
The grey 3yo came out of the gate awkwardly, lost a couple of lengths, tracked a soft pace of 23 4/5, 46 2/5 and then powered 3 wide off the turn and drew away from favoured J BE K.
Harlem Rocker drifted into the rail after he made the lead, racing greenly perhaps and switching leads and again, jockey EIBAR COA did not ride the colt out, preferring to ease him up nearing the wire. He ran in 1:34 2/5.
The Stronach Stables/Adena Racing Venture (I believe it is 80% and 20% ownership respectively) colt is trained by Todd Pletcher.
Will the colt be pointed to the May 17 PREAKNESS at Pimlico and perhaps tab any decision about the Plate until later??
Reports are that the colt will indeed go to the PREAKNESS.
If he did come for the Plate - he would certainly be the heavy favourite right now...

A BONANZA OF LONGSHOTS and betting was big

It would be hard to find a day at the races like yesterday's at WOODBINE.
THREE winners paid over $100.00 (one paid $167), others paid $53 and $21 on a 10

race card of racing that was just perplexing to say the least.
By the time first time starter BELIEVER'S LADY, from post positon 14, won the final

race at 6 1/2 furlongs after a very slow start, the dust settled and bettors and handicappers were scratching their heads.

What about the handle?

$2.5 MILLION on a Friday that, other than featuring a cool little overnight stake called

the WANDO, featured some of the less expensive/slowest horses on the grounds.

BELIEVER'S LADY's race was something to see. She drew in from the Also Eligible

list for Colebrook Farms and trainer Ashlee Brnjas (they scratched the other half of the

entry..was this by design?).
But the I Can't Believe - Gommie's Kid bay 3yo filly broke very slowly and was,at one

point, close to 20 lengths behind the leader when she started to pick her way past

It's hard to believe (I Can't Believe) that a filly starting her career for $9,500 could bob

and weave her way through a field like this gal did (okay, it was not a good field) and in

mid stretch, bulled her way between rivals to take the lead.
She won by 2 1/4 lengths and paif $107.10 to win.

Her score completed a wild day of payoffs. The last race Pick 4 paid $9,000, the Pick

3, $3,900 and a superfecta with just 3 of the finishers clocked in at $18,000. Oh yes,

the triactor paid $15,000.

What was the common thread of the winners on the card?
There was not one. The track played very fair (well, it was seemingly speed biased

through race 5 and then every horse after that came from far back to win) - was it truly

Did they do something at race 5 to change the surface (IE ATER IT, HARROW, CHECK THE WOODBINE WEBSITE TO LEARN MORE) or was it just a bizarre day of racing???

Most of the winners were making their first starts of the year or were first time starters

(2 of those). The Woodbine horses who had Woodbine races under their belts could

not be found.

The day started off with some bettors signalling out the winners,however.
The first race went to SWEETSOUTHERN DOLL, who was 8 to 5 in the early betting

and won at 9 to 1, kind of by accident.
The race was being won by GRENADE in her 2nd career start but the filly stalled on a

clear lead and her and her rider Tyler Pizarro were surprised when the

Sweetsouthernsaint filly roared last late.
She is owned by Anne Perron and trained by Dave Cross. Winning rider Dean Deverell

celebrated at the wire like he had won the Derby.

KALEIDESCOPE KERRY opened at 8 to 5 in the 2nd race (8 to 1 morning line) and

she battled on the pace all the way and then edged clear to win at 9 to 2. The Ontario

bred by ONE WAY LOVE out of Kerry Dancer by Bold Executive is owned by

Dominic Triumbari and trained by John Ross.

More speed in race 3. HINDU HOLIDAY is a very game fellow. The grey Unbridled

Time 4yo, maign his 2nd start of the meeting for trained Abraham Katryan, would not

let favoured Forbidden Bear past through the stretch. While both geldings fought hard

to the wire (this was a horse race, the jockeys looked like passengers in this dash), it

was Hindu Holiday who held on. He was just 3 to 1 with blinkers added.

JEALOUS RAGE ran a like a maniac in the 4th race and she was taking a big edge

over those $20K maiden fillies and mares. The Nick DeToro grey, who had come close

to winning last year, was very ready this year even if she opened up a 10 length lead

early in the 6 furlong race. She won easily at 9 to 5.

Things started to get silly then.

Front running SIMPLY SPLENDID trashed a field of maiden allowance fillies in race 5

- some with Woodbine Oaks aspirations.
The Maria's Mon Kentucky bred raced once in her life - last May - and had trained in

She was well prepared by Gail Cox, however, and Tyler Pizarro made sure in the

stretch this time as she held a big lead. She won by 6 1/2 lengths.
Her Beyer was a smart 82.
One of the favourites, Satin Slippers, was checked badly on the turn on the rail and

finished 12th (No INQUIRY???).

RACE 6- fillies and mares for $20K non-winners of 3. JENTAMJAY barged her way

through rivals to win at 80 to 1 in a 10-horse field.
Favourites like HOUSTON ONE broke slowly and rushed up in a botched up trip,

JANET'S STAR, a longshot, was blocked for a long time from the turn to the wire and

well, the race was just goofy.
The winner is owned and bred by Hugh Morris in Ontario. She is by Inspired Prospect.

MARKET GAIN ran a 79 Beyer Figure is a super win for $40K in race 7. The lightly

raced Pure Prize gelding, a half-brother to CHOCTAW RIDGE (millionaire), was

virtually last turning for home in the 6 furlong race but he rallied in the last jumps to win.

He is a Woodford Racing/Mark Casse product.

First timer FELINE FURY popped up in a maiden allowance in race 8, an Ontario

sired race. Owned, trained and bred by Dr. Jenny Creer, the Cat's at

Home-Ballaquinny gelding ran a 71 Beyer Figure in the 5 1/2 furlong race, rallying from

well back under Dean Deverell. Heavily favoured People Don't Change seemed to be

bogged down on the rail, angled out but stalled.

The WANDO STAKES was a showcase for BONANZA, a good hoss, who made a

mockery of the Queen's Plate hopefuls in the 1 1/16 mile race.
After an awkward start from the gate, the colt was outrun and wide, loomed up around

the turn and then blew past the dueling leaders, Giquere and Niagara Thunder.
The Beyer Figure for the 1:43.99 time was a good 90.
Bonanza, incidentally, was coming out of the Risen Star Stakes won by Pyro - an ultra

key race.

Deputiformer seems off the Plate Trial now with a flat effort. Giquere and Niagara

Thunder both ran well despite burning themselves out.


CHURCHILL DOWNS opens so Pat Husbands is there to ride TURF WAR in the

Derby Trial Stakes - tough spot. canadian champion KODIAK KOWBOY looks like

a better prospect in that one-mile race.

HARLEM ROCKER takes a next step to the Plate with his outing in the WITHERS


WOODBINE'S JACQUES CARTIER STAKES (Lake Secret is scratched, Legal

Move expected to be scratched too) features the talented SANTANA STRINGS, 2nd

to BENNY THE BULL in the Sunshine Millions Sprint in January before the latter went

off to win in Dubai.
A Wheaton 6yo,he loves synthetic surfaces.
BALLADO DANCER, overbet when 2nd in the prep for this race, figures to take

action again and he will be the front runner to catch.
PRINCE ATLANTIS will be the wise guy play as an improving 4yo.


Good stuff in the DRF today from Jay Hovdey and Steven Crist, who each write about TRAKUS - the tracking system that was brought to North American horse racing by just one racetrack - WOODBINE!

CORRECTION: THE CHICKLET'S were reported by some to be be changed into a line on the bottom of the screen at Woodbine (A LA KEENELAND) instead of imitating the actual race and taking up a whole lotta space on the TV screen, however, this has been deemed unfounded.

Anyway - the Trakus transmitters are providing accurate information on where each horse is during the race and that is very good.

You'll need to pick up a copy of the DRF to read these stories (or be a member on the website).


Fort Erie, April 25th - The 111th season of live thoroughbred racing at Fort Erie Race

Track is about to begin. Track maintenance crews have been working diligently to

prepare the Boarder Oval for the May 3rd opening.

"Everything seems to be coming together,” said Herb McGirrr, the tracks Director of

Operations. “This “Old Gal” needs extra special attention each and every year.”

The historic track, which opens on Derby Day, will celebrate the opening with $1 Hot

Dogs and $1 Soft drinks. Fridge Magnets will be given away while supplies last and

there will be live music throughout the afternoon.

The first race of the year will break from the gate at 1:05pm.

Fort Erie will race the following day, Sunday May 4 before beginning it’s regular

schedule of Sunday through Tuesday racing, which will commence on Sunday, May 11.

Three Saturdays have been added to the schedule. Saturday, July 19, August 30 and

October 25. The 80-day meet wraps up on Tuesday, October 28.

The $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes, second jewel in Canada’s Triple Crown will be

run on Sunday, July 13. The Ernie Samuel Memorial Stakes and the Daryl Wells Sr.

Memorial will compliment the Prince of Wales.

The track will once again host a series of Cup races. 8 races, each with a purse of

$25,000, will be run during the summer. The 2 mile and 70 yard Cheldon Tour de Fort

is scheduled for closing day.

For a complete list of Stake races, Cup races and promotional events, visit our website



Good story by David Grening on the trainer of the Derby fave.."ya, I've messed up some things."


  • At 2:58 PM, Blogger vivapataca said…

    3 year-old Canadian-bred Van Bossed (Van Nistelrooy x Embossed, by Silver Deputy), who was bred by Bernard And Karen McCormack, won a Class 3 race at 6 furlongs at Ripon today by 2¾ lengths decisively under Adrian Nicholls. This is his second consecutive victory within 9 days.

    Here is a link to a nice picture of him from

  • At 9:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Jen,

    According to DRF, Harlem Rocker is likely Plate-bound.

  • At 11:37 PM, Blogger shoogley said…

    Hi Jen, Why is the morning line necessary if the racing is so unpredictable. Why not take the toatal of hoirses in the race and divide into 100 to give each an equal chance at the beginning of the betting and let the public take over and calculate the odds from there. It (the morning line and the possible favourites) is proving to be very misleading.Like the weather, the results of horse racing are mostly unpredictable.

  • At 11:37 AM, Anonymous Cangamble said…

    Shoogley, Jen's job as oddsmaker isn't to pick winners, it is to predict what the final odds will be.
    If you think horses all have an equal chance, I suggest you bet all horses who have odds greater than the total for the amount of horses in the race.
    Let me know how you do after a couple of weeks.


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Friday, April 25, 2008


ROBERT CLARK'S artwork can be viewed/purchased at



There was buzz about the sizzling debut win by MR. MISTOFFOLEES yesterday at Keeneland. The dark bay with the white face won his debut at 4 1/2 furlongs in 50 seconds flat (see his 2yo in training video in yesterday's post).
Previously named ROMANCE THE CAT , the Storm Cat-Country Romance colt is from the family of top Caandian mare SQUARE ANGEL (his 4th dam), the dam of KAMAR, STELLARETTE (his 3rd dam). etc.

SMART STRIKE had his 52nd stakes winner when COMMUNIQUE won the Grade 3 Bewitch Stakes at Keeneland. The 4yo is out of a Pleasant Colony mare.
Third in the 12 furlong race was the Roger Attfield trained mare RISING CROSS, owned by Gary Tanaka.

Canadian stakes placed filly QUIET JUNGLE was a close 2nd in her turf debut yesterday. The Forest Wildcat filly was making her first start on turf and first since July in the allowance race at 1 1/16 miles. She is owned and bred by Sam-Son Farms.

Canadian-bred SHERATON PARK, an almost pure white filly by Cozzene, had a disapoointing debut at Keeneland in the finale yesterday, dropping back to finish well behind as one of the choices on the odds board. The Cozzene filly is owned by Eugene Melnyk.

HELLO! Here's a baby boy from the first crop of SURVIVALIST out of MISS STUCK UP, owned by Cavendish Inc. and foaled at Windfields Farm just 6 days ago. (photo courtesy of Windfields)


Ten races up today, the 9th card of racing of the Woodbine season - that means 2 PICK 4 bets.

The feature of the day is a good one - the first running of the WANDO STAKES (Canadian Triple Crown winner) which goes late, as race 9.

The 1 1/16 mile race mixes some American bred 3yos with some Canadian-bred Queen's Plate contenders.

GIQUERE and DEPUTIFORMER, both from trainer Mike DePaulo's stable, will vie for favoritism. Both were well beaten in their lone start this year at Gulfstream but are back in the friendly confines of Woodbine and on Polytrack.
Jono Jones appears to have selected Giquere, a son of Mutakkdim, who has to prove his mettle at the longer distance.

NIAGARA THUNDER may be a grass horse only, but the Hussonet colt was a sensational maiden winner at Gulfstream on the grass and he was 2nd on Polytrack to Giquere in his debut last year. Corey Fraser will ride.
His stablemate TACITO will be scratched from the Wando Stakes today (he's entered on Sunday).

A nice maiden allowance race - race 5 - could produce some WOODBINE OAKS players.

REVERENTLY (Pulpit-Forty Gran) and SATIN SLIPPERS were 3rd and 4th in the Princess Elizabeth Stakes last fall, return to action in the 7 furlong race. The latter is by E. Dubai and is listed as a the 3 to 1 morning line favourite from post 1.

Others to watch for include Stronach Stables' SKIPPING QUEEN (Touch Gold), who was 3rd in her debut at Gulfstream (and Pat Husbands rides her and not Satin Slippers!) and firster TAPENADE (crushed olive paste), by Smart Strike out of a three-quarter sister to WANDO...HUNCH BET??

MANDATORY PAYOUT ON PICK 6 TODAY Keeneland Closes Spring Meet on Friday with Record Pick Six Carryover

The Pick Six at Keeneland was not hit on Thursday, resulting in a record $375,412 carryover going into Friday’s final race day of the spring meet. The previous record carryover of $307,049 occurred on April 13, 2008.

If the Pick Six is not hit on Friday, there will be a mandatory payout.

The Pick Six on Friday will cover races five through ten, including the $200,000 Fifth Third Elkhorn (G2). Post time for the fifth race Friday is approximately 3:10 p.m. ET.

Keeneland also will offer a Friday Pick Four on races seven through ten.


Mike Battaglia's Friday Analysis

Kim Nelson's Friday Analysis

Bill Howard's Friday Analysis

Handicappers Consensus

(He's co-owned by Adena Racing Venture and owns a share, check its cool site at

The trend of tiny fields in graded stakes races continues.
The Grade 3 WITHERS at Aqueduct tomorrow is laughable but there is some interest for Canadian racing fans.
HARLEM ROCKER, 2 for 2 in his career and a leading Queen's Plate contender (see and its Queen's Plate website) will be 2nd choice it seems to J Be K, the Bay Shore Stakes winner.
Harlem Rocker, by Macho Uno, will have Eibar Coa aboard again. The Stronach Stables/Adena Racing Venture owned colt is out of Freedom Come.

$150,000, 3yo, 1m, Aqueduct, 1:58 PM ET P Horse Sire Jockey Wt. Trainer
1. Harlem Rocker Macho Uno Eibar Coa 116 Todd A. Pletcher
2. J Be K Silver Deputy Garrett K. Gomez 123 Steven M. Asmussen
3. Double Or Nothing Double Honor Edgar S. Prado 118 Richard E. Dutrow Jr.
4. Face the Cat Tale of the Cat John R. Velazquez 116 Todd A. Pletcher

Big Brown Cruises in Final Ky. Derby Work
(from Gulfstream Park press office)


Florida Derby winner and Kentucky Derby favorite Big Brown blew through five furlongs at Palm Meadows early Thursday morning in :58 3/5, and while most trainers handle their nerves by counting sheep at night, trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. eagerly counts the days in the runup to May 3.

“It’s a horse race, and I have the best horse in the race. It’s that simple,” he told a group of reporters assembled outside his office. “We’re going to Kentucky to win, anything less than that is not going to be OK with us. There’s such good karma going around the stable now that I don’t see how he can get beat.”

Dutrow watched Big Brown work from the top of the stretch and after his colt finished in a straight line, tight against the rail, he told exercise rider Michele Nevin “I can’t believe he went that fast. He looked like he was just galloping along when he went past me.”

Big Brown, who is owned by IEAH Stable and Paul Pompa Jr., will be Dutrow’s first Kentucky Derby starter, and his famously laid-back trainer is not getting caught up in the hype.

“I’ve never been in this kind of spot before but I don’t feel any pressure, not as long as my horse is going good. I’m having fun. This is what I was born to do.”

The son of a successful New York-based trainer, the younger Dutrow, 47, has already trained a Horse of the Year in Saint Liam, who took the 2005 title after winning that year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic. Most horsemen will tell you that Breeders’ Cup pressure is immense, and that Kentucky Derby pressure is somewhere beyond that. Most horsemen feel it differently from Big Brown’s trainer.

“I love the spot I’m in. I can’t see anyone going into this race nearly as well as we are,” he said.

Big Brown has won all three of his starts, the first two by a combined 24 lengths and his last, the $1 million Florida Derby, by five lengths while competing against South Florida’s best 3-year-olds in training.

He ran on turf in his first race, at Saratoga Sept. 3, when owned solely by Pompa and trained by Patrick Reynolds; on a drying-out track at Gulfstream on March 5 well after IEAH Stable had bought in and Dutrow had taken over the colt’s training; and on a fast track in the Florida Derby March 29, from which he broke from Post 12 in the 1 1/8-mile race.

“(The Saratoga race) was amazing,” Dutrow said of the bay colt’s 11¼-length victory, “and he took our breath away the first time he ran at Gulfstream,” winning by 12¾ lengths.

Much was made of Big Brown’s post position in the Florida Derby, but Dutrow said it was never a concern.

“I thought the only way he could get beat in the Florida Derby was if he ran into trouble, and the outside post assured us that he wouldn’t get into trouble,” he said.

“We thought about the (April 12) Blue Grass, but the spacing from the Florida Derby to the Kentucky Derby (five weeks later) better suited us. We wanted a lot of time after the Florida Derby, and I think a lot of time is best for a race like (the Kentucky Derby).”

Big Brown suffered from quarter cracks earlier in his career, but Dutrow said the colt’s one-time brittle feet are no longer a concern.

“His feet have been cold the last three or four weeks,” he said. “I’m not worried about his feet at all.”

Big Brown is expected to depart Palm Meadows – winter headquarters for Street Sense and Barbaro, the last two Kentucky Derby winners – Monday.

“I have about 80 horses up in New York, and I talk to my people up there every day,” Dutrow said, “but I’d rather be here with this horse because it’s so much fun. He wants to be here at Palm Meadows.”

Getting off his seat long enough to give his colt a peppermint, he said, “We spoil him … he probably gets away with murder … but he’s the one who told us he wants to be here.”

Big Brown closed at 3-1, the favorite, after Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

“It’s an honor to be the favorite now, and he’ll be the favorite on Derby Day, I can guarantee that,” Dutrow said. “We’re a betting stable, and we’ll make sure he’s the favorite.”

EDITOR'S NOTE - Same guy who trained WILD DESERT??

courtesy YOUTUBE - kentuckyderby videos


By Robert J. Summers--News Sports Reporter
Updated: 04/21/08 11:05 PM

Top Kentucky Derby contenders (with starts, firsts, seconds, thirds, earnings, trainer and probable jockey).

1. Colonel John (6-3-2-0, $825,300. Eoin Harty, Corey Nakatani): Son of 2000 Horse of the Year Tiznow showed a fantastic late run in winning the Santa Anita Derby in 1:48.16, (identical to Big Brown's Florida Derby time) catching three horses with distance questions (Bob Black Jack, Coast Guard and Yankee Bravo) in the final furlong. ... According to the Louisville Courier-Journal's "Derby Data Track" feature, he ran the final 3/8ths in 35.1 seconds, fastest finish for any contender in a 1 1/8 mile prep race. ... Trainer Harty says "abilitywise he reminds me of Real Quiet and Silver Charm," Derby winners he helped train while with Bob Baffert. ... "I know from being around them that my horse will be competitive on Derby Day. ... He's always struck me as a horse that will show up on Derby Day and run a credible race."

2. Big Brown(3-3-0-0, $662,700. Richard Dutrow Jr., Kent Desormeaux): Holy cow! He wired the $1 million Florida Derby from the 12-hole in 1:48.16 while drawing off from the field ("like a deer in a meadow," said Desormeaux) after fractions of 45 4/5, 1:10 and 1:35 in the most impressive performance of the spring so far. ... He'd be No. 1 if not for bad memories of Bellamy Road, who disappointed in the 2005 Derby after a similar performance in the Wood Memorial. ... Plus the question of whether a horse can win the Derby in his fourth career start with a history of foot problems. ... After Big Brown's workout on April 12, the Daily Racing Form reported that "Dutrow said he still can't understand why Big Brown drifted out to the middle of the track entering the stretch during both of his wins this winter as well as in his final work prior to the Florida Derby."

3. Adriano (7-3-1-0, $394,100. Graham Motion, Edgar Prado): Impressive win in March 22 Lane's End Stakes over Turfway Park's Polytrack renewed interest in son of A.P. Indy. ... This colt moved way up on this list when Edgar Prado chose to ride him over his two other Derby contenders, Tale of Ekati and Monba. ... That still doesn't cancel the fact that Adriano finished 17 lengths behind Cool Coal Man (in a race that also included Court Vision and Z Humor) in the Fountain of Youth over a real dirt track at Gulfstream. ... April 19 Lexington Stakes at Keeneland is next.

4. Tale of Ekati (6-3-1-0, $763,200. Barclay Tagg, Eibar Coa: Worked like a dog to catch War Pass in the final strides of the Wood to punch his ticket to Kentucky after a sixth-place finish behind Pyro in the Louisiana Derby in his 3-year-old debut. ... But the time was only 1:52.35 (last furlong in 13.93 seconds), slowest of the day's three Derby preps at 1 1/8 miles. ... Is he improving enough to make another leap forward on the First Saturday in May? ... Stay tuned and watch for his workout reports. ... Colt was downgraded on this list after jockey Edgar Prado, who rode him in the Louisiana Derby and the Wood, chose to stay with Adriano.

5. Pyro (7-3-2-1, $1,057,718. Steve Asmussen, Shaun Bridgmohan): Was that 10th place finish in the Blue Grass a disaster or just a stamina-sharpening workout on the Polytrack? ... Whatever it was, it had to make this horse's backers a little wary. After all, as Blood-Horse magazine's Steve Haskin pointed out, the last Derby winner to finish worse than fourth in his final Derby prep was Iron Leige in 1957, and he finished fifth. ... Before the Blue Grass jockey Bridgmohan said Pyro's got an "explosive kick" than can be sustained for "a quarter or 3/16ths of a mile" and added that "I don't think we've seen the best of his abilities." ... After the race, Bridgmohan said "He didn't give me the same run as he has. I asked him for run around the turn to try and set myself up pretty good and I didn't get the response I was hoping for." ... Asmussen told the New York Times' Bill Finley "I’m definitely worried that he didn’t do enough in the Blue Grass. I would have worked him by himself. Now, his next work will definitely be in company. I just can’t look at the Blue Grass as a hard race.” ... By the way, did anyone notice that the horses that really needed the graded stakes money to stay on the Derby trail finished 1-2 (Monba, Cowboy Cal), and the horses that just needed a race (Cool Coal Man, Pyro) finished 9-10 on the Keeneland Polytrack in the Blue Grass?

6. Cool Coal Man(8-4-1-0, $307,531. Nick Zito, Julien Leparoux): Stalked the pace and came home strongly to win the Feb. 24 Fountain of Youth for his second straight victory over 1 1/8 miles at Gulfstream. ... Although nobody is sure exactly how fast he ran because of a timing glitch (estimates range from 1:49.58 to 1:50.07 but owner Robert LaPenta says it was 1:49 3/5), that performance, his first stakes win, earned him enough graded stakes money to get to the Derby. ... What was that ninth-place finish in the Blue Grass all about? It raised the same questions about CCM as it did about Pyro.

7. Court Vision(6-3-1-2, $367,542. William Mott, Garrett Gomez): Finished well on the far outside to edge Giant Moon for third place in the Wood Memorial after Mott ran a "rabbit" to soften up War Pass in the early going. ... Grandson of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat came from 12th to third in the 1 1/8-mile Fountain of Youth in his sophomore debut. ... It was his first out-of-the-exacta finish but still was a good showing for his first race in three months. ... Scored impressive win at 1 1/8 miles in Aqueduct's roughly run Remsen Stakes in November for third straight victory while beating Big Truck by five lengths.

8. Monba (5-3-0-0, $577,534. Todd Pletcher, Ramon Dominguez): Blue Grass victory, his first in a stakes race, propelled him back into Derby picture after 12th place finish as the injured favorite in the Fountain of Youth. ... Won a mile allowance race (in a sharp 1:35.50) at Churchill Downs last November. ... His sire, Maria's Mon, sired 2001 Derby winner Monarchos. ... Horse was downgraded on this list after jockey Edgar Prado, who rode him in the Fountain of Youth and Blue Grass, chose to stay with Adirano, instead of Monba or Tale of Ekata.

9. Cowboy Cal (6-3-1-1, $314,708, Todd Pletcher, John Velazquez): Won Laurel Futurity and Tropical Park Derby on grass, as did Barbaro en route to 2003 Derby victory. .‚.‚. After runner-up finish in grassy Hallandale Beach on Feb. 16, Pletcher switched to synthetic surface in the Blue Grass Stakes and he finished a close second to stablemate Monba.

10. Recapturetheglory (6-2-1-2, $333,080). Louis Rousell III, E.T. Baird): What are we to make of this wire-to-wire Illinois Derby winner from the connections of Risen Star, winner of the Preakness and Belmont Stakes in 1988? ... Was the track quirky (not one horse passed another in the stretch), or was his time of 1:49.01 for the 1 1/8 miles indicative of a budding talent ... Two races back he finished second to Cool Coal Man in an allowance race at Churchill Downs, so maybe he's got some quality although his pedigree shouts "sprinter" since his sire, like War Pass, is champion sprinter Cherokee Run.

11. Gayego (5-3-2-0, $723,420. Paulo Lobo, Mike Smith): His first start on real dirt and outside of California went tremendously as he won the $1 million Arkansas Derby. ... He still hasn't beaten much, but hey, how about that bankroll? ... And he's never been out of the exacta.

12. Z Fortune (6-3-2-0, $386,600, Steve Asmussen, Robby Albarado): Runner-up finish to Gayego in Arkansas Derby boosted his the New York-bred's stock considerably. ... Could he turn out to be Asmussen's best 3-year-old after all? ... After the race, Albarado said "I don't like running second but this was a big move forward for him today. He really improved over his last race and showed me he still has some more ability."

13. Visionaire(6-3-1-1, $250,760. Michael Matz, Jose Lezcano): Before the race, Matz said. "We don't have to win [the Blue Grass] Saturday, but obviously the colt will have to show he belongs. We've really believed in the colt all along, so this has all been extremely gratifying." ... So the question is: Does a fifth-place finish by 6 1/4 lengths show he belongs? ... Came flying through the fog to win the Gotham Stakes over the Aqueduct slop on March 8. ... He was 2 3/4 lengths behind Pyro in the Risen Star on Feb. 9.

14. Hey Byrn (8-4-2-0, $266,000. Edward Plesa, Chuck Lopez.): Won the 1 3/16-mile Holy Bull on April 12 after finishing 15 3/4 lengths behind Big Brown in Florida Derby. ... Do you think he's likely to improve enough to beat him next time?

15. Big Truck(8-3-1-1, $336,880. Barclay Tagg, Javier Castellano): New York-bred son of Hook and Ladder had steadily improved with each race and showed a great stretch kick in catching Atoned in the last 40 yards to win the March 15 Tampa Bay Derby. ... Then he finished 11th in the Blue Grass. ... Jockey Eibar Coa, who rode him in his last two races, jumped to Tale of Ekati when the mount became available after Edgar Prado's defection to Adriano.

16. Z Humor(8-2-0-3, $621,450. William Mott, Rafael Bejarano): Earned $400,000 as a dead-heat winner (with Turf War) in the Dec. 7 Delta Jackpot for 2-year-olds. ... As a 3-year-old he shows three medoicre efforts, most recently a third-place finish in the Illinois Derby and a fourth-place finish, 8 1/2 lengths behind Cool Coal Man, in the Fountain of Youth. ... He's hard to get excited about.

17. Smooth Air (7-2-2-2, $395,500. Bernie Stutts Jr., Manny Cruz): While all eyes were on Big Brown, he was the only other horse running well in the Florida Derby as he finished second by 5 lengths and earned $200,000. ... In case you were wondering, Florida Derby runners-up won the Kentucky Derby in 1991 (Strike the Gold) and 1974 (Cannonade).

18. Giant Moon (6-4-0-0, $223,525, Richard Schosberg, Jorge Chavez): New York-bred ran a solid, gutsy race to finish fourth in the Wood, just a neck out of third. ... But he'll have to get lucky to get into the Kentucky Derby because he has only $37,500 in graded earnings. ... But he looks real good for the New York Derby at Finger Lakes.

19. Denis of Cork(4-3-0-0, $213,552. Dennis Carroll, TBA): Made impressive stakes debut with solid finish to win Feb. 18 Southwest at Oaklawn Park at a mile. ... Connections decided to skip the March 15 Rebel Stakes and race in the April 5 Illinois Derby, where he finished a dull fifth and the Daily Racing Form chart-caller said he "offered no response when called upon" in the stretch.

20. Fierce Wind (6-3-0-0, $146,200. Rick Violette Jr., Cornelio Velasquez): Finished five lengths in front of Z Humor in Sam Davis Stakes at 1 1/16 miles at Tampa Bay Downs on Feb. 16, so time will tell if he deserves a higher ranking. ... He finished 10th in the Florida Derby, where he drew the inside post and was in contention for a short while. ... Former trainer Nick Zito said he bled in the race. ... Owner switched horse to Violette.


Check out

the new website for champion jockey EMMA-JAYNE WILSON

Four-legged athletes come from Europe and the U.S. to race Tom Wolski, The Province

This season at Hastings, it is all about the horses. After close to four years of wondering if slot machines would ever be up and running for an opening day of live horseracing at Hastings, Saturday at 1:25 p.m. those two forms of entertainment come together.

This year, a visit to the Hastings stable area is different. Unlike previous years when pessimism was normal, there are smiles of optimism seen everywhere.

Because of this, you cannot help but get a feeling; this season horseracing fans are going to see a year unlike any other.
Fans will be in for a treat when True Metropolitan races this year, says trainer Terry Jordan.

Because horse racing is a sport where athletes do not bicker about money or flaunt egos, expect to see all of last season's equine stars, with the exception of one (superstar Monashee is pregnant) back for another year.

Among top horses taking up residence at Hastings Racecourse are two 2007 Canadian champions.

Last season, Bob Cheema's Dancing Allstar captured the $127,000 My Dear Stakes and narrowly missed in the $125,000 Colin, both raced at Woodbine. In her only year of racing, Dancing Allstar won $306,350. Impressive enough results to earn her a Sovereign award for Canadian champion for two-year-old filly.

"She [Dancing Allstar] is truly special. She does everything you ask. And is a real freak of nature," said trainer Terry Jordan.

The other Canadian champion local fans will see is Cheema's superstar True Metropolitan. A winner in three provinces, the son of Proud and True won $458,240 last season pushing his lifetime winnings past $918,000, earning Canadian champion older horse of the year and giving his owner rare double sovereign awards.

"True Metropolitan is going fantastic. I truly believe he is better than last year and he was great last year. Our racing fans will be in for a treat when he races," added horse trainer Jordan.

Among older horses hoping to dethrone True Metropolitan are Nick & Pauline Felicella's Spaghetti Mouse, a former B.C. Derby winner who has won $631,501, and Patrick Kinsella & Glen Todd's Sir Gallovic, who handed rival True Metropolitan his only loss at Hastings last year.

© The Vancouver Province 2008


  • At 10:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Nice website by Emma-Jayne, very smart young lady there. Looking forward to watching it grow. Just type in though, if you put the www in front you won't find the site.

  • At 12:11 PM, Anonymous Daryl G. Ezra said…

    Fort update... add Raymond Raganuth
    to the missed list.He has worked has hard has anyone this spring.


  • At 12:31 PM, Anonymous Daryl G. Ezra said…

    To reply from yesterday from Annon...

    Mondays and Tuesdays should be no problem. Struggling Woodbine jockeys will fill the void.

    We should have enough riders for most races unless we get a 12 horse field, even then the local jockey colony should pick up...On a seperate note we do have several empty stalls here...we understand that some more horses are being released from Woodbine this week and there still are a few outfits arriving from Mountaneer etc...

  • At 2:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Jen Did you see the Pic on Wooodbine's website of Shilla, nice pic eh! Can't wait till Sunday to see her. She is a Beast! Lou M.

  • At 9:35 PM, Blogger vivapataca said…

    What a sensational ride by Patrick Husbands on MARKET GAIN in Race 7 today. "Simply Splendid"!


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