ascot aug08
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Sunday, December 21, 2008


(HO-HO-HO, from Argentina, Nico's photostream at captured this scene on the big day last week - the Group One Gran Premio Pellegrino)


Not only is TAMPA BAY DOWNS one of the most popular betting products for handicappers and fans out there but look at the moves they have made not only with its WEB SITE ( but with the STEWARDS REPORTS each day.

At Woodbine, finding rulings and explanations of things is virtually impossible. They are not on a website, they are not in the program.
And in these times of perception - the fans want to know that the sport is being strictly scrutinized.

Let's hope Ontario follows TAMPA BAY'S example very very closely when 2009 begins.



FAIR GROUNDS yesterday - Ontario bred EDAMAME was 4th beaten 14 lengths in the Letellier Stakes for 2yo fillies at 6 furlongs. The filly is owned by Windways Farm.

It was not a great day for trainer Malcom Pierce as THE GREAT CARUSO was last in the Bonapaw Stakes behind STORM TREASURE and SHES INDY MONEY was 4th in another minor stake.

MISS BLAKELY (Smart Strike - A Bit Special (GB) by Rahy, bred by Adena Springs in Ontario, won a $25,000 maiden claiming race at 1 1/8 miles on the turf at Calder racecourse in Friday.
The owner is Capital Hill Thoroughbreds and Joe Orseno trains.

Friday at FAIR GROUNDS, Sam-Son Farms' stakes winning FRENCH BERET was 2nd in an allowance race by just 3/4 of a length to Wise River. The 1 1/16 mile grass race was run in 1:44.31.



Baffert gets back on the Derby trail
Special, Wire Reports

Pioneerof the Nile had trainer Bob Baffert thinking Kentucky Derby after he scored a thrilling victory over I Want Revenge in Saturday's $750,000 CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park.

Baffert, who has saddled three Derby winners, equaled the record of four Futurity victories set by D. Wayne Lukas as Pioneerof the Nile fought off gritty 6-1 shot I Want Revenge in deep stretch to win the Grade I event by a nose under jockey Garrett Gomez.
click here

The Futurity has been a launching pad for six Kentucky Derby winners since being inaugurated in 1981, which is no secret to Baffert. He sent out Real Quiet to win the 1997 Futurity en route to Kentucky Derby and Preakness wins in 1998.

Pioneerof the Nile covered 11⁄16 miles in 1:41.95 to earn his second win in five starts.

I Want Revenge finished 1½ lengths clear of Chocolate Candy in third, while Bittel Road was two lengths farther back in fourth.

Second-choice Azul Leon finished fifth in the field of 11 2-year-olds, followed by Axel Foley, Mark S the Cooler, Hype, Frumious, J P Jammer and Ventana.

The victory was special because Baffert had the best 2-year-old in the nation in Midshipman, who was sold prior to the Breeders' Cup and sent to Dubai by Darley Stable after winning the Juvenile. Now Baffert has another serious juvenile.

"He's totally different than all my other Futurity winners," said Baffert, who also won the race with Captain Steve in 1999 and Point Given in 2000. "Of all of them he probably reminds me a little bit of Real Quiet. He's a nice horse, he's improving and he's well-bred. The last couple times I worked him he seemed like a pretty serious horse, so I told my wife that this could be the horse to get us back to the Derby."


The STEVE ASMUSSEN trainees at FAIR GROUNDS are cleaning up - especially the ones that last raced at Woodbine.
One of them was the ultra impressive JIMMY SIMS, touted as a stakes colt by many when he wo his maiden at Woodbine...he won a stake yesterday...

this EXCERPT is also from KENTUCKY.COM

'Macho,' Turf War fall short

Jimmy Simms made a stretch rally for a 31/4-length win in the $60,000 Woodchopper States for 3-year-olds Saturday at Fair Grounds.

Jimmy Simms defeated a field that included graded stakes winners Macho Again and Turf War.

Jimmy Simms increased his career earnings to $103,085 with his third win in seven starts and covered about one mile in 1:39.21 over the firm grass footing.

Evade finished second and Acting Zippy was third.

Macho Again, the second-place finisher in the Preakness, finished a well-beaten sixth as the betting favorite in his turf debut.

"I thought he handled the turf," jockey Kent Desormeaux said. "I had to make him want to race. He just wanted to go out for a gallop. The next race, we need to man up."

Turf War, who won the $1 million Delta Jackpot last year before three disappointing starts in the Kentucky Derby prep season, finished seventh. The Woodchopper was Turf War's first race since finishing eighth in the Derby Trial at Churchill Downs on April 26.


As reported by THOROUGHBLOG a week ago, FATAL BULLET, the Canadian Horse of the Year and KENTUCKY BEAR, Grade 1 placed, were injured at Santa Anita over the synthetic surface.

The DAILY RACING FORM now reports on the injuries citing Fatal Bullet having a jammed knee and Kentucky Bear having bowed a tendon.

Trainer Reade Baker has taken his last horse from Santa Anita to stay with him and his string at Palm Meadows.

A site for KENTUCKY BEAR (Mr. Greeley) to stand at stud in ONTARIO is being sought.




Jambalaya working toward return

By Mike Welsch

MIAMI - A three-furlong workout in 38 seconds rarely draws attention on any work tab. But it does if the name accompanying that work happens to be Jambalaya.

Jambalaya has not started since winning the 2007 Arlington Million more than 16 months ago. His three-furlong breeze at Gulfstream on Thursday was just his third since returning to training earlier this year and first since shipping to Florida from Woodbine less than a month ago.

Jambalaya, a 6-year-old son of Langfuhr, was discovered to have suffered a deep bone bruise shortly after his three-quarter-length victory over The Tin Man in the Arlington Million according to trainer Catherine Day Phillips.

"He had a little filling after the race. We did a bone scan and saw the area at the base of the cannon bone was damaged," explained Day Phillips. "It took quite some time to heal, almost six months, but it healed up quite nicely. Unfortunately, we suffered a second setback with him this spring when he pulled a gluteal muscle."

read the rest...


Retired trainer Maurice Zilber has passed away.
He trained greats like DAHLIA, one of the all-time great mares (who won at Woodbine in the Can. International).

The DAHLIA STAKES WILL be run today too!! (at Hollywood Park)


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