ascot aug08
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Thursday, October 23, 2008


Cindy Pierson Dulay photo


Breeders' Cup, in its 25th anniversary, gets underway tomorrow with 5 races, all for the girls, on FILLY FRIDAY. First post for the sprinting gals (well, 7 furlongs to be exact) is 3:35.

Conversations with several of the local connections out in California cited the extreme heat as a major factor as the horses ready for the big days.

Some European horses have heavy coats already and have had to be clipped.
And horses are not jumping around much because it is so hot.

The site has comprehensive notes and photos each day of the horses entered in the 2 day Breeders' Cup.

Woodbine has been filing notes on the local horses at its site,

Advance wagering is available tomorrow at Woodbine
for Saturday's races.

Saturday morning at Woodbine there is a Breeders' Cup seminar at 11 a.m. talking about the day's races.


Todd Phillips captured VAN LEAR ROSE on the track yesterday. The filly loves the camera according to the team with Richard Day's prized filly
(who was unsold as a yearling at $4,700)

On the locals for Filly Friday

Van Lear Rose (Tr: Catherine Day-Phillips) – Catherine Day-Phillips watched Van Lear Rose on the track from her pony this morning and said the Kingview Farm homebred breezed 2f in 24, while the clockers credited the filly with a 3f work in 36 1/5. "She seems to like the track and she's got a good feel for it," reported Day-Phillips, the daughter of Canadian Hall of Fame trainer James Day. "She's much more confident now. She seems to lap up the click of the shutters. She's very proud of herself." The Mazarine Stakes winner is away from her home base at Woodbine for the first time, but she seems to be adapting well to Southern California. "The first time you ship a horse you're always curious about how they will handle the experience, especially when there are all those cameras on the rail. She handled it all just fine and was posing for the photographers." Candice Bowyer, the assistant to Day-Phillips and the filly's regular exercise rider, was in the irons this morning.

Bear Now (Tr: Reade Baker; ex. rider: Cassie Garcea ) – Bear Now has been stabled at Santa Anita for three weeks because trainer Reade Baker, who is based at Woodbine in Ontario, Canada, wanted to make sure that she and stablemate Fatal Bullet (Sprint) had plenty of time to acclimate. "She's doing very well and seems to like the Pro-Ride surface," he said. "Her second work back was brilliant." The 4yo daughter of Tiznow, owned by Donnie Dion's Bear Stables and referred to as the "Stable Princess," worked 5f handily in 58 4/5 on Oct. 12 at Santa Anita under exercise rider Cassie Garcea. It was the second-fastest workout of the 54 horses at the distance that morning. She followed up with another 5f work in 1:03 last Saturday. When asked about the very stiff competition in the Ladies Classic, Baker smiled and said, "They're all tough."

Sealy Hill (Tr: Mark Casse) – Norman Casse has been supervising the training of Sealy Hill, the 2007 Canadian Horse of the Year and Canadian Filly Triple Crown winner, until his father Mark Casse arrives tonight. Norman recognizes that it is rare to be around a horse of her caliber and accomplishment. "It is a true honor," said the younger Casse, who is still in his twenties. "Obviously, one of the reasons I started in, and stayed in this business was to be around a really good horse like her." Sealy Hill isn't the first Canadian Horse of the Year that Casse has found himself working in close proximity to. "It's funny. Last year at the Breeders' Cup, I ended up helping hold Arravale, who was our reigning Horse of the Year, when I gave (trainer) Mac Benson's wife a hand. I was thinking that I should really appreciate the moment, because I'd never be around a Horse of the Year again. I even joked about it. Now it's me who's around the Horse of the Year. "That's pretty neat and it's something I'll always remember for the rest of my life. She's a very special horse and it's an honor and a joy to have her."


Duke of Marmalade, the Euro-hero, goes for a stroll, Terence Dulay photo


(other than the weather)



by Jerry Bossert

ARCADIA, Calif. - Unlike Barack Obama and John McCain, who keep talking about change, racing traditionalists want to keep the status quo, racing on a traditional dirt track.

"I'm not a big fan of it," said Jimmy Jerkens, who is training Zaftig for this weekend's Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint and Doremifasollatido for the Juvenile Fillies. "It seems ridiculous that you can't maintain a dirt track that's safe enough to run on it."

That was the main reason why synthetic tracks began showing up throughout the country.

Right after Barbaro suffered his catastrophic injury in the 2006 Preakness Stakes, the California Horse Racing Board mandated that all major tracks in the state must install a synthetic racing surface, purportedly to make the sport safer.

The results are mixed.

Some tracks are reporting fewer catastrophic injuries, but trainers are reporting different types of injuries to their runners.

"Here's the one stat," said Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel. "They ran 30% more races at Saratoga than Del Mar and they had one fatality at Saratoga in the afternoon and that was on the grass. They had five fatalities at Del Mar in the afternoon."

Frankel also reports that he's had some issues with his horses' feet.

"When it's 90 degrees out, the (synthetic) track surface heats up to 160 degrees," Frankel said.

California jockey Aaron Gryder, who rode in the past on the New York circuit, also feels the heat.

"When you first come on to the track you can feel it," Gryder said of the Pro-Ride surface, which he believes is the fairest of the synthetic surfaces used in California.

Santa Anita uses Pro-Ride, Hollywood Park uses the Cushion Track, Del Mar uses Polytrack and Golden Gate uses the Tapeta surface.

Delightful Kiss may have hit his head in the van but he looks pumped as he preps for the MARATHON on Saturday, Cindy Pierson Dulay photo


ROUSE THE CAT - 2nd at Woodbine at 50 to 1
West Virginia

C. Town trainer gets his chance to run Breeders
Rouse the Cat punches Figgins' ticket to Calif.

By JEFF NATIONS/Journal sports writer

CHARLES TOWN -For Charles Town trainer Ollie Figgins III, a simple claim may have turned out to be the chance of a lifetime.

Figgins, based at Charles Town Races & Slots, liked the speed he saw in a 4-year-old gelding named Rouse the Cat. So Figgins put in a bid on the horse before a $10,000 claiming race at the track.

Turns out, Figgins made a pretty good investment. Rouse the Cat did indeed have speed, especially on turf tracks. Enough speed, in fact, to earn Figgins an invitation to this week's Breeders Cup at Santa Anita Park in Acadia, Calif., and a chance to go head-to-head against some of horse racing's highest-profile trainers.

"It's the most prestigious race I've ever been in," said Figgins, who left for California on Tuesday. "It's an opportunity to run at that level. If you can compete at that level and prove you can compete, people are eager to send you horses."

After acquiring Rouse the Cat last year, Figgins ran the gelding in a pair of allowance races at Charles Town and picked up a pair of second-place finishes.

"He ran well. He was a little tardy out of the gate and he ran into some traffic trouble," Figgins said. "I dropped him back down to a $10,000 claims race and he won that easily, so we shipped him to Maryland and introduced him to turf."

The grass agreed with Rouse the Cat, who has won three of seven lifetime starts on turf - twice at Pimlico and once at Laurel Park. And on Sept. 1, Figgins' horse turned in a solid third-place finish in the Turf Monster Handicap at Philadelphia Park.

That success convinced Figgins to enter the Florida-bred gelding in the Grade II Nearctic Stakes on Oct. 4 at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, in which the winner received an automatic invitation to the Breeders Cup. Going off as a 52-1 longshot, Rouse the Cat and jockey Christopher VanHassel just missed the outright win by a nose against True to Tradition.

The performance was still strong enough to earn Figgins his first-ever invitation to the Breeders Cup, where he'll run Rouse the Cat in Saturday's $1 million 6-furlong Breeders Cup Turf Sprint.




By Bill Bradley
Published: Thursday, Oct. 23, 2008 | Page 1C

There are a lot of things that need changing in the sports world. For instance, the NFL's regular-season sudden-death playoff (the college overtime method works best), the Bowl Championship Series (a 16-team playoff is needed) and 8:30 p.m. Eastern time starts for World Series games.

One event that shouldn't have been changed is the Breeders' Cup, which is run this weekend. Last year, one of horse racing's biggest events switched from a single day of racing on a Saturday to a Friday-Saturday affair. And I'll bet the casual fan has lost patience with the event.

"It's the best two days for betting," said veteran handicapper Todd Schrupp, an analyst for racing network TVG. "But with 14 races and two days, you've got to absolutely set something aside that you won't bet so you'll have something left for the Classic.

"Otherwise, you can be tapped out before you get to the really big race. There's so many races, it's really hard."

Did the Cup organizers ever hear of the "less is more" theory? It's apparent that greed – "if one day of racing is great, why not have two?" – got the best of them because they ruined a good thing.



Post Horse Trainer Jockey Odds
1 Magnificience Bruce Headley David Flores 20-1
2 Indyanne Greg Gilchrist Robby Albarado 12-1
3 Intangaroo Gary Sherlock Alonso Quinonez 9-2
4 Lady Sprinter Juan Reviriego Rene Douglas 15-1
5 Indian Blessing Bob Baffert John Velazquez 2-1
6 Zaftig James Jerkens Rafael Bejarano 8-1
7 Dream Rush Rick Violette Kent Desormeaux 20-1
8 Tiz Elemental Carla Gaines Joel Rosario 20-1
9 Dearest Trickski John Sadler Mike Smith 15-1
10 Miraculous Miss Steve Klesaris Ramon Dominguez 20-1
11 Jazzy Mark Hennig Alan Garcia 20-1
12 Ventura Bobby Frankel Garrett Gomez 5-1
13 Tizzy's Tune Ron McAnally Alex Solis 30-1
14 La Tee Mark Glatt Jon Court 30-1


Post Horse Trainer Jockey Odds
1 April Pride James Cassidy David Flores 12-1
2 Laragh John Terranova Edgar Prado 7-2
3 Maram Chad Brown Jose Lezcano 10-1
4 C Karma Gregory de Gannes Cornelio Velasquez 8-1
5 Emmy Darling John Sadler Rafael Bejarano 8-1
6 Freedom Rings David Donk Alan Garcia 8-1
7 Consequence Shug McGaughey John Velazquez 8-1
8 Sugar Mom Wayne Catalano Eibar Coa 10-1
9 Renda Juan Arias Sebastian Madrid 10-1
10 Beyond Our Reach Tommy Stack Frankie Dettori 15-1
11 Saucey Evening Graham Motion Garrett Gomez 9-2
12 Heart Shaped Aidan O'Brien John Murtagh 15-1


Post Horse Trainer Jockey Odds
1 Evita Argentina John Sadler Alex Solis 15-1
2 Persistently Shug McGaughey Alan Garcia 15-1
3 Black Magic Mama Doug O'Neill Rafael Bejarano 15-1
4 Sky Diva Steve Klesaris Ramon Dominguez 7-2
5 Be Smart D. Wayne Lukas Garrett Gomez 15-1
6 Van Lear Rose Catherine Day Phillips Chantal Sutherland 30-1
7 Dave's Revenge Robert Hess Jr. Joel Rosario 30-1
8 C. S. Silk Dale Romans Robby Albarado 15-1
9 Palacio de Amor Myung Kwon Cho Victor Espinoza 12-1
10 Stardom Bound Christopher Paasch Mike Smith 2-1
11 Pursuit of Glory David Wachman John Murtagh 8-1
12 Dream Empress Ken McPeek Robby Albarado 6-1
13 Doremifasollatido James Jerkens Eibar Coa 15-1


Post Horse Trainer Jockey Odds
1 Sealy Hill Mark Casse Patrick Husbands 15-1
2 Vacare Christophe Clement Jose Valdivia Jr. 10-1
3 Forever Together Jonathan Sheppard Julien Leparoux 6-1
4 Visit Sir Michael Stoute Ryan Moore 15-1
5 Wait a While Todd Pletcher John Velazquez 3-1
6 Dynaforce Bill Mott Alan Garcia 6-1
7 Mauralakana Christophe Clement Kent Desormeaux 5-1
8 Halfway to Heaven Aidan O'Brien John Murtagh 4-1
9 Folk Opera Saeed bin Suroor Frankie Dettori 10-1
10 Pure Clan Bob Holthus Edgar Prado 15-1


Post Horse Trainer Jockey Odds
1 Zenyatta John Shirreffs Mike Smith 3-5
2 Hystericalady Jerry Hollendorfer Garrett Gomez 15-1
3 Cocoa Beach Saeed bin Suroor Ramon Dominguez 8-1
4 Music Note Saeed bin Suroor Javier Castellano 6-1
5 Carriage Trail Shug McGaughey Kent Desormeaux 8-1
6 Ginger Punch Bobby Frankel Rafael Bejarano 9-2
7 Santa Teresita Eric Guillot Michael Baze 50-1
8 Bear Now Reade Baker Eurico Rosa da Silva 30-1

Last night's Ruling Angel Stakes, winner came off dead rail trip

With a strong move between fillies on the turn, Windhaven's Hello Maggie May rallied in time to beat big favourite Tribal Belle in the overnight Ruling Angel Stakes last night at Woodbine.

The 6 1/2-furlong event for three-year-old fillies was the first career
stakes score for the Ontario-bred daughter of Lemon Drop Kid.

Hello Maggie May, who stopped the teletimer in 1:15.53, finished a neck
ahead of 4-5 favorite Tribal Belle. Bear Lahaina was third.

The Beyer Figure was 87.

The Ruling Angel was the 12th stakes victory of the season for Hall of
Fame trainer Roger Attfield, who trained the filly's mare Fantasy Lake
to a championship season in 1998.

"She was champion two-year-old," offered Attfield. "She just kept
producing nice foals. I really love this filly. A lot of her family were
kind of temperamental. This filly does everything you ask her to do.
She's got ability."

The filly was bought back by Bill Graham's Windhaven for $350,000 as a yearling at the Keeneland yearling sale two years ago.

Attfield said Hello Maggie May appears content to race from off the

"We have a pretty good idea how she likes to run," he said. "She ran a
good race her last start. She dropped down to the rail when the rail was
really dead. Otherwise, I think she was going to run a big race that
day, also."

For winning jockey Tyler Pizarro, the victory comes just seven days
after he notched his first career added-money tally with Bold Corky.

"I can definitely get used to this spot," said Pizarro, referring to
the infield stakes winner circle. "Roger said let her be and see if you
can make a run with her. I just had to point her in the right direction
and she got there. She's an awesome filly."

Unraced at two, Hello Maggie May is now 3-for-7 this year with $159,914
in earnings.

Hello Maggie May returned $17.30, $5.40, $3.70, combining with Tribal
Belle ($2.70, $2.40) for a $52.10 exactor. Bear Lahaina ($4.30) rounded
out a triactor worth $155.80.


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