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Updated: 9 hours 15 min ago

Taraz Easily Passes Two-Turn Test in Martha Washington

Sat, 2020-02-01 17:00

Taraz earned the ‘TDN Rising Star’ moniker after romping by 7 1/2 lengths in her Churchill Downs unveiling Nov. 14 and made good on that initial promise with an 11 1/4-length tour de force in the Letellier Memorial S. in the slop at the Fair Grounds Dec. 21. Heavily favored to continue her hot streak in this sophomore bow, the Juddmonte homebred went straight to the front, cruising through early splits of :23.44 and :47.50. Still just cantering along as she turned for home in front, Taraz sauntered home to a facile victory.

The winner has a juvenile full-brother named Silk Trade and a yearling half-sister by Flintshire (GB). Her second dam is SW & G1SP Jibe. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

MARTHA WASHINGTON S., $142,500, Oaklawn, 2-1, 3yo, f, 1m, 1:38.64, ft.
1–TARAZ, 119, f, 3, by Into Mischief
1st Dam: Silk Route, by Empire Maker
2nd Dam: Jibe, by Danzig
3rd Dam: Slightly Dangerous, by Roberto
O/B-Juddmonte Farms Inc (KY); T-Brad H. Cox; J-Florent
Geroux. $90,000. Lifetime Record: 3-3-0-0, $192,412.
‘TDN Rising Star’
2–O Seraphina, 118, f, 3, Congrats–Deherewego, by Dehere.
($60,000 Wlg ’17 KEENOV; $180,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP).
O-Scott & Evan Dilworth and Randy & Susan Andrews;
B-Carolin Von Rosenberg & Mike Yovankin (FL); T-Joe Sharp.
3–High On Gin, 122, f, 3, Fury Kapcori–Holiday Ashley, by The
Cliff’s Edge. ($7,500 RNA Ylg ’18 OBSOCT; $7,500 2yo ’19
OBSOPN). O-Jerry Caroom; B-Deborah A Silveira (FL); T-Carl J.
Deville. $15,000.
Margins: 3 3/4, 6 1/4, 13. Odds: 0.10, 9.50, 14.30.
Also Ran: Princesinha Julia. Scratched: Shedaresthedevil.


The post Taraz Easily Passes Two-Turn Test in Martha Washington appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Max Player Wears Down Shotski in the Withers

Sat, 2020-02-01 16:49

Max Player went from maiden winner to graded winner by outstaying his competition in Saturday’s GIII Withers S. His victory was both the first black-type and graded for sire Honor Code (A.P. Indy), whose Lane’s End barn mate Tonalist was also represented by his first graded winner Saturday in the form of GIII Forward Gal S. romper Tonalist’s Shape. Awkward early but flying home late when second on debut going a mile at Parx Nov. 12, Max Player broke through in the slop by 4 1/4 lengths back in Bensalem Dec. 17, and was flattered when three of the foes behind him that day came back to grab their diplomas.

Climbing into the kickback a bit while third last around the first bend, Max Player advanced out wide down the backside behind splits of :23.96 and :49.16. Seemingly ridden busily while losing ground heading for home, he started to find his best stride near the quarter pole and was one of many still in with a chance at that point. GII Remsen S. winner Shotski boxed on up front, but Max Player continued to grind it out down the center of the track and struck the front in the final sixteenth before widening his advantage to a convincing margin.

“It was a good thing I watched his replays coming into today,” said winning rider Dylan Davis. “He doesn’t like too much kickback. He broke well for me today and right when the first kickback came to him into the first turn, he immediately got distracted. I got him back outside and he got on pace and started running well. Going into the second turn, he was traveling well and I had to get into him early because he started getting a little green. Once he got to the stretch he was all business.”

Conditioner Linda Rice added, “He’s becoming more professional all the time in his morning workouts. Anyone that watched his two races at Parx could see he ran pretty green…
He got pinched out a little bit into the first turn and Dylan [Davis] did a nice job of getting him back into the race and into the clear. He had a bit of a wide trip, but it was a great ride by Dylan. He’s shown us in the morning that he’s had a lot of run at the end of his workouts.”

Of what could be next for the colt, Rice said, “I would think the [Apr. 4 GII] Wood Memorial would be the right spot. I don’t want to shorten him up to one-turn in the [Mar. 7 Gotham [March 7 at the Big A]. We’ll point towards the Wood and whether we do something in between, George [owner George Hall] and I will figure that out.”

Saturday, Aqueduct
WITHERS S.-GIII, $250,000, Aqueduct, 2-1, 3yo, 1 1/8m, 1:53.87, ft.
1–MAX PLAYER, 118, c, 3, by Honor Code
1st Dam: Fools in Love (SW, $240,746), by Not For Love
2nd Dam: Parlez, by French Deputy
3rd Dam: Speak Halory, by Verbatim
RNA Ylg ’18 KEESEP). O-George E. Hall; B-K & G Stables (KY);
T-Linda Rice; J-Dylan Davis. $137,500. Lifetime Record:
3-2-1-0, $173,500. *1/2 to Seahenge (Scat Daddy), GSW &
G1SP-End, $136,394. Werk Nick Rating: A+.
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Shotski, 123, c, 3, Blame–She Cat, by Bluegrass Cat. ($25,000
Ylg ’18 FTKOCT). O-Barber, Gary, Wachtel Stable, Pantofel
Stable and Howling Pigeon Farms, LLC; B-Springland Farm &
Prime Bloodstock LLC (KY); T-Jeremiah O’Dwyer. $50,000.
3–Portos, 118, c, 3, Tapit–Fierce Boots, by Tiznow.
O/B-Wertheimer Et Frere (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher. $30,000.
Margins: 3 1/4, HF, HF. Odds: 5.40, 1.85, 2.95.
Also Ran: Monday Morning Qb, New Commission, Prince of Pharoahs, Mr. Shortandsimple, Vanzzy. Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

Pedigree Notes:
‘TDN Rising Star’ Honor Code (A.P. Indy) annexed the track-and-trip GII Remsen S. late in his 2-year-old season in 2013, and added highest-level wins in the Metropolitan H. and Whitney S. as a 4-year-old. Broodmare sire Not For Love is responsible for the dams of eight other graded winners, including Max Player’s half-brother Seahenge and two-time Horse of the Year California Chrome, who also hails from the A.P. Indy sire line. Dam Fools in Love was an $80,000 yearling who earned her stakes victory going a two-turn seven furlongs at Delta Downs. Her half-brother International Star (Fusaichi Pegasus) swept the Fair Grounds graded Triple Crown preps in 2015, the same year Fools in Love produced Seahenge (Scat Daddy), who would sell to Coolmore’s MV Magnier for $750,000 at the following year’s Keeneland September sale. Seahenge went on to take the G2 Champagne S. and finish third in the G1 Darley Dewhurst S. in 2017, and Fools in Love brought $1 million from Cheveley Park Stud in foal to Speightstown that Keeneland November. She failed to have a foal in 2018, but produced a Ulysses (Ire) colt in 2019.

The post Max Player Wears Down Shotski in the Withers appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Oaklawn Posts Opening Weekend Handle Records

Sat, 2020-02-01 16:41

Oaklawn Park, which opened last Friday, posted strong opening week handle and attendance numbers, including record opening day and January handle. Estimated total attendance for the first three racing dates (Jan. 24-26) was 57,500, a 3.6% increase over the corresponding period last year. Total off-track handle of $12,787,682.84 increased 13.1%. Total all sources handle of $15,400,631.44 represented a 7.7% increase.

Opening day all-sources handle $5,789,986.10 and off-track handle $4,759,768 were both Oaklawn records, as was the January off-track record of $4,629,703.63 set last year.

“What a great weekend to start the 2020 race season,” General Manager Wayne Smith said. “Many thanks go out to our equine athletes, the owners, trainers and jockeys for putting the best racing on the track. And, a huge thank you to all our team members for enhancing the fan experience. We’re looking forward to an amazing race meet.”

The post Oaklawn Posts Opening Weekend Handle Records appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Into Mischief’s Mischevious Alex Upsets Swale

Sat, 2020-02-01 16:34

Last term’s GII Saratoga Special S. winner and GI Champagne S. runner-up Green Light Go and the runaway debut winner Untitled (Khozan) took all the money here, but it was Mischevious Alex (Into Mischief) who ran more like an odds-on favorite.

Swiftly into stride from the inside post, the last-out runaway winner of the Parx Juvenile S. held inside position at the fence as the two market leaders lingered behind. Both Green Light Go and Untitled were up and down approaching the stretch, but Mischevious Alex, who turned for home in complete command, had plenty left and shot clear en route to a daylight victory.

Mischevious Alex, a narrow debut winner at Parx last June, was a close third in Monmouth’s Sapling S. Sept. 1. He followed his lone off-the-board finish in the grassy Laurel Futurity Sept. 21 with an impressive score with blinkers added in the Parx Juvenile last time Nov. 5.

“If you throw out this horse’s turf race, he should be undefeated,” winning trainer John Servis said. “He’s always been a push-button horse, but very green. When we did decided to put the blinkers on him, that’s when he started to mind his business. I really think, me personally, a one-turn mile is going to really hit him on the head. Is he a mile and a quarter horse? I don’t think so.”

Pedigree Notes:

Mischevious Alex becomes the 27th graded winner for leading sire Into Mischief. Two-time winner White Pants Night was purchased as a broodmare prospect by WinStar Farm for $100,000 at the 2014 KEENOV Sale. The 9-year-old mare is a half-sister to graded winner Hebbronville (Majesticperfection) and stakes winners Master of Disaster (Dance Master) and A Day for Dancing (Dance Master). She is also represented by the 2-year-old colt named Great Gasby (Tiznow) and a yearling colt by Outwork. She was bred to Wicked Strong for the 2020 season.

SWALE S.-GIII, $150,000, Gulfstream, 2-1, 3yo, 7f, 1:22.83, ft.
1–MISCHEVIOUS ALEX, 122, c, 3, by Into Mischief
1st Dam: White Pants Night, by Speightstown
2nd Dam: More d’Amour, by Tour d’Or
3rd Dam: Love Connection, by Master Derby
1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($75,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP; $140,000
2yo ’19 OBSAPR). O-Cash is King LLC and LC Racing LLC;
B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY); T-John C. Servis; J-Irad Ortiz, Jr.
$90,210. Lifetime Record: 6-3-1-1, $179,230. Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Werk Nick Rating: A+++
*Triple Plus*.
2–Shivaree, 122, c, 3, Awesome of Course–Garter Belt, by
Anasheed. O/B-Jacks or Better Farm Inc. (FL); T-Ralph E. Nicks.
3–Green Light Go, 124, c, 3, Hard Spun–Light Green, by
Pleasantly Perfect. O-Stronach Stables; B-Adena Springs (KY);
T-James A. Jerkens. $14,550.
Margins: 7, NK, HD. Odds: 4.90, 8.90, 1.70.
Also Ran: Untitled, Necker Island, Inter Miami, Point Winner, Flash Pass. Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

The post Into Mischief’s Mischevious Alex Upsets Swale appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

OBS June Topper Debuts a Winner at Santa Anita

Sat, 2020-02-01 16:18

2nd-Santa Anita, $55,000, Msw, 2-1, 3yo, f, 7f, 1:25.48, ft.

CLIVETTY (f, 3, Into Mischief–Rosemonde, by Indian Charlie) brought $375,000 as a yearling at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Sale and RNA’d for $400,000 at OBS the following March, but returned to the Ocala auction ring in June, topping the sale at $900,000 after breezing in a snappy :20 4/5. Sent off at 5-1 in this career bow, the hulking bay filly was off a half-step slow and trailed the quintet as Eyes Open (Street Sense) clocked early splits of :22.37 and :45.57. Making rapid progress up the outside on the backstretch, she was three-wide turning for home and wore down the top two late for a 3/4-length success. The pacesetter held second by a neck over My Happy Girl (American Pharoah), a daughter of My Happy Face (Tiz Wonderful). Clivetty is the second foal out of Rosemonde and the first is her stablemate and fellow OXO Equine colorbearer Rowayton (Into Mischief), MGISP, $251,630. Rosemonde produced a Frosted colt in 2018 and a filly by that Darley sire in 2019. She was bred back to Justify. Clivetty hails from the family of champion Proud Spell (Proud Citizen), Canadian champion Miss Mischief (Into Mischief) and GISW JP’s Gusto (Successful Appeal). Sales history: $375,000 Ylg ’18 FTSAUG; $400,000 RNA 2yo ’19 OBSMAR; $900,000 2yo ’19 OBSOPN. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $33,000. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

O-OXO Equine LLC; B-H. Allen Poindexter (KY); T-Don Chatlos.


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Tonalist’s Shape a First Graded Winner for Tonalist

Sat, 2020-02-01 14:58

Tonalist’s Shape kept her unbeaten record intact and trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr.’s hot streak going while becoming her sire (by Tapit)’s first graded winner. The chestnut belied 19-1 odds to take her Sept. 28 unveiling here while in the barn of trainer Juan Avila and carrying the colors of Sabana Racing Stable Corp. The phone started to ring after that, and she resurfaced with her current connections to take a Gulfstream Park West optional claimer by daylight Oct. 20. Tonalist’s Shape aired by nine lengths and earned a strong 89 Beyer Speed Figure for her Nov. 30 Hut Hut S. effort over an additional furlong, and looked more or less like a lock for this one on paper.

Not away particularly quickly, the favorite advanced down the backside and was third out in the clear as they entered the bend. She seemed to idle for a few strides midway around the turn, but Eclipse-winning pilot Irad Ortiz, Jr. soon gave a confident flick of his stick and she started to take off. She bounded clear in upper stretch, and was wrapped up late after proving too much for her competition to handle.

Debuting Nikki and Papa, a $500,000 Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream purchase last term, broke in very badly from the rail, but ran well to make up the ground she spotted her more experienced foes to get up for third.

“I got a perfect trip,” said winning pilot Irad Ortiz, Jr. “She broke out of there a little slow, but she usually does that. She worked her way up pretty quick and after that I just went with the flow. When I asked her turning for home, she really responded. She did everything right.”

Joseph added, “It’s so important that she wins a graded stake because they paid good money for her and now it makes her valuable in that sense. This race came by design. It was to give her a break for the Forward Gal and go through the Gulfstream series because they have a good series for 3-year-old fillies. Today was the first stepping stone. She did everything we asked. She was a further back in the beginning. I know cutting back, she doesn’t really want to be [sprinting], but it was the right way to get her where we need to get her. She did everything we asked and we can’t be more proud of her.

“She’s not flashy, but she’s going to do what she needs to do. I’m just glad to have her and thankful that the owners put her in our barn. She’s won with four different riders and she could have probably won with four different trainers. All being well, we’ll go in the [Feb. 29 GII] Davona Dale and the [Mar. 29 GII] Gulfstream Park Oaks. That would be a good plan for her.”

Saturday, Gulfstream Park
FORWARD GAL S.-GIII, $150,000, Gulfstream, 2-1, 3yo, f, 7f, 1:24.77, ft.
1–TONALIST’S SHAPE, 122, f, 3, by Tonalist
1st Dam: Hitechnoweenie (SW, $175,332), by Harlan’s Holiday
2nd Dam: Hi Tech Honeycomb, by Meadow Monster
3rd Dam: Star of Fairway, by It’s Freezing
$60,000 RNA 2yo ’19 OBSAPR). O-Slam Dunk Racing, Doug
Branham & Legacy Ranch, Inc.; B-Sabana Farm (KY); T-Saffie A.
Joseph, Jr.; J-Irad Ortiz, Jr. $92,070. Lifetime Record: 4-4-0-0,
$190,350. Werk Nick Rating: A++. Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Street of Dreams, 118, f, 3, Street Sense–Breaking Promises,
by Broken Vow. ($80,000 Ylg ’18 FTKOCT; $150,000 2yo ’19
EASMAY). O-Lothenbach Stables, Inc. (Bob Lothenbach);
B-New Cal Stable (KY); T-Ian R. Wilkes. $29,700.
3–Nikki and Papa, 118, f, 3, Mineshaft–Starship Spirit, by Grand
Slam. ($70,000 Ylg ’18 FTKJUL; $500,000 2yo ’19 FTFMAR).
O-Ron Paolucci Racing, LLC, Todd Cady, Leigh Anderson-Butler,
Jeffrey Lambert, Steve Melen & Nydia M. Sigband; B-Susan
King (OH); T-Robert B. Hess, Jr. $14,850.
Margins: 3 3/4, 1 3/4, NK. Odds: 0.30, 3.20, 22.50.
Also Ran: Fujairah, Compensate, New Day Dawning.
Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

Pedigree Notes:
Tonalist’s Shape was the also first black-type winner for her Classic-winning ‘TDN Rising Star’ sire. She RNA’d for $60,000 at OBS April after breezing in :10 2/5. Her dam annexed the Panthers S. going a mile at Prairie Meadows in 2013 and was second by a nose sprinting on the Turfway all-weather in the 2014 Holiday Inaugural S. Second dam Hi Tech Honeycomb also took the Panthers in 2002, and was graded-placed on the grass and in the slop. Hitechnoweenie produced an Outwork filly in 2018 and a Connect colt in 2019 before visiting Tiznow for 2020. Tonalist’s Shape is the eighth graded/group winner out of a Harlan’s Holiday mare, and is bred like 2015 GII Adirondack S. heroine Just Wicked (Tapit).

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OBS March Sale Catalog Now Online

Sat, 2020-02-01 13:30

The catalog for the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company’s 2020 March Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training is now available via the OBS website at

A total of 681 juveniles have been cataloged for the two-day sale, set for Tuesday and Wednesday, Mar. 17 and 18, with both sessions beginning at 10:30 a.m. The Under Tack Show will span three days, beginning Thursday, Mar. 12 with Hips 1-227. Hips 228-454 will breeze Friday, Mar. 13 and Hips 455-681 will go Saturday, Mar. 14. All three sessions will begin at 8:00 a.m.

The iPad version of the catalog can be accessed via the equineline Sales Catalog App. For more information and downloads go to:

The post OBS March Sale Catalog Now Online appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Curlin Firster Tons Best En Route to ‘Rising Star’ Tag

Sat, 2020-02-01 13:02

Chiefswood Stable homebred Edge of Fire (Curlin) was crunched into 17-10 favoritism off a morning line nearly three times that and the money proved smart indeed, as the chestnut wheeled off heels passing the midstretch marker and went on to a deceptively easy two-length debut score and ‘TDN Rising Star’ honors in the process.

Away fairly, but given a busy ride by Jose Ortiz, Edge of Fire–who blew out three furlongs in a bullet :35 1/5 Jan. 28–was rousted along and responded to sit just behind the leading trio while well in hand on the turn. Held together into the final three-sixteenths of a mile, Ortiz switched him out at the furlong grounds and never asked his colt for anything approaching a top effort while edging away to score by daylight. The well-tried Tapi Frost (Tapizar) hit the front inside the eighth pole, but was no match for the winner and settled for second.

The winner is the first foal from his dam, third in the 2015 GIII Selene S. and a daughter of Chiefswood’s Essential Edge (Storm Cat), victorious in the grassy GII Canadian S. and third in the Bison City S. during her sophomore season. Edge of Fire’s third dam Rose of Tara (Ire) (Generous {Ire}) was a half-sister to champion Salsabil (Ire) and G1SW Marju (Ire) and served as the second dam of MGSW Flameaway (Scat Daddy). Chiefswood’s MGSW and Woodbine course-record holder Tiz A Slam (Tiznow) also appears under the third dam. Leading Edge is the dam of the 2-year-old filly Hard Edge (Hard Spun) and a yearling Pioneerof the Nile filly. Leading Edge was most recently covered by Justify.

2nd-Gulfstream, $43,000, Msw, 2-1, 3yo, 6f, 1:11.83, ft.
EDGE OF FIRE, c, 3, by Curlin
1st Dam: Leading Edge (GSP), by Tapit
2nd Dam: Essential Edge, by Storm Cat
3rd Dam: Rose of Tara (Ire), by Generous (Ire)
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $25,800.
O-Chiefswood Stables Limited; B-Chiefswood Stables Limited (ON); T-James A. Jerkens. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton. Click for the free catalogue-style pedigree.

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Zayat Addresses Maker Complaint

Sat, 2020-02-01 11:56

Jay Ingle, an attorney with the Lexington, Kentucky-based law firm Jackson Kelly PLLC, released a statement on behalf of owner Ahmed Zayat Saturday morning addressing the complaint filed by trainer Mike Maker in Jefferson County Court this past Thursday seeking better than $120,000 in alleged unpaid training bills.

“This lawsuit from Mike Maker is absurd,” the statement read. “Ahmed Zayat made all payments required under his prior settlement with Mr. Maker until MGG seized control of Zayat Stables’ bank account last month. It is outrageous for Mr. Maker to cry foul given that he agreed to the terms of the workout, which Mr. Zayat has fully honored in an effort to keep his business afloat and repay each of his creditors. To suggest he’s done anything less and accuse Mr. Zayat of fraud is scurrilous and defamatory. Mr. Zayat fully expects this lawsuit will be dismissed and intends to seek appropriate sanctions against Mr. Maker for pursuing this malicious action.”

Zayat Stables and its horses were put into receivership Jan. 22 and a $23-million lawsuit was filed MGG Investment Group in Fayette County courts. In an action of his own Jan. 28, Zayat filed a motion asking the same court to dissolve the receivership and to allow MGG and Zayat to resolve the dispute in a different manner.

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Santa Anita Cancels Racing Feb. 6

Fri, 2020-01-31 18:25

When condition book three for the Santa Anita winter/spring meet came online Jan. 29, conspicuously absent were any races for Thursday, Feb. 6. Track officials confirmed Friday that racing has in fact been canceled for that afternoon, meaning there will be no live Thursday programs until Feb. 27. In January it was announced that the track would be dark Feb. 13 and 20. There is holiday racing scheduled for Monday, Feb. 17.

The California horse population has been on the decline for some time and the local product has faced increased competition from tracks like Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs and Churchill Downs in Louisville, which offer purse money well in excess of that in California. According to Daily Racing Form, the average number of starters per race through the first 17 days and 148 races of the meet is 7.56 versus an average of 7.72 in 2018-2019, when 197 races had been run over the course of 21 days.

Aidan Butler, The Stronach Group (TSG)’s chief strategy officer, downplayed the significance of the move.

“It’s only a day we’re taking off–it’s not an elaborate change,” he told the TDN‘s Dan Ross. “We have a bunch of flex days we can use, and looking at the inventory, at this moment in time it seems better to tighten it up a little bit and have better days and fuller fields than spread it out. It’s all about product quality at the end of the day.”

When asked whether the reduction of a day alone would be enough to boost field sizes, Butler said that “it’ll help.”

“It’s a baby step but it’s a smart step,” he added. “We’re looking at what races are filling. There are lots of opportunities between grass and turf, and at certain times of the year, you have more of some than others. You also have to give everyone a shot to run. That’s the aim of the game.”

In 2019, Santa Anita officials agreed to shave 12 days off its 104-day schedule. The cancellations of Feb. 6 and 13 will bring the total to four, DRF reports.

The post Santa Anita Cancels Racing Feb. 6 appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

TERF Awards More Than $14K to New Bolton Center

Fri, 2020-01-31 16:58

The Thoroughbred Education and Research Fund (TERF) has announced that it has awarded $14,285 to New Bolton Center for the University of Pennsylvania Opportunity Scholarship.

The scholarship was established in 1998 by Dr. Charles W. Raker, V’42 and provides veterinary students with financial assisance and mentorships. Some 270 scholarships have been given out since the inception of the program.

According to a release, TERF’s grants reflect the values set forth by founders Herb and Ellen Moelis in 2013.

To make a tax-deductible donation to TERF, click here, or send a donation to TERF, c/o The Chester County Community Foundation, 28 West Market St., West Chester, PA, 19382.

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Sir Winston Returns to Winning Ways at the Big A

Fri, 2020-01-31 16:50

7th-Aqueduct, $81,560, Alw (C)/Opt. Clm ($80,000), 1-31, 4yo/up, 1m, 1:39.15, ft.

SIR WINSTON (c, 4, Awesome Again–La Gran Bailadora {GSW & GISP, $338,416}, by Afleet Alex), victor of the GI Belmont S. last June, returned to winning ways Friday in his return to dirt after a failed attempt on turf last month. Scratched due to sloppy conditions in last Saturday’s Jazil S. at the Big A, the homebred was given a 4-1 chance in this competitive event. The chestnut trailed the field early as Leitone (Chi) (Dunkirk) loped along through opening splits of :24.52 and :48.33. Cutting up the fence to improve position turning for home, the Mark Casse pupil muscled his way between foes while cross-firing at the top of the stretch. Straightened out by Dylan Davis as he changed fully to the correct lead, Sir Winston kicked it into high gear in the three-path, powering clear of his foes to win by 2 1/4 lengths. Favored Musical America (Malibu Moon) filled the place spot and Leitone completed the trifecta. Sales history: $50,000 RNA Ylg ’17 KEESEP.

“I think he exceeded the expectations today,” said Casse’s assistant Jamie Begg. “When Mark decided to put him in this spot, we just wanted a good effort out of him and for him to show his running style. If we could hit the board and he did it his way, we’d be happy. But this was above expectations, so we are happy.”

As for what’s next, Begg said, “I think Mark was looking towards the Bernardini [Feb. 29 at Aqueduct], but we’ll talk to Mr. Farmer and see how he comes out of this race and go from there.”

Off the board in the GII Toyota Blue Grass S. at Keeneland last April, Sir Winston was second next out in Belmont’s GII Peter Pan S. May 11. He closed strongly under a well-timed, rail-skimming ride from Joel Rosario to upset the Belmont June 8 and was shelved for six months. The chestnut returned at the Fair Grounds on yielding turf in the Dec. 28 Woodchopper S., where he failed to fire after being bumped at the start and finished last of 12.

A second generation Farmer homebred, Sir Winston is out of GSW La Gran Bailadora, whose most recent produce is the unraced 3-year-old filly La Isadora (Ghostzapper). She was most recently bred to Kantharos. Lifetime Record: GISW, 12-4-1-1, $1,005,773. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

O/B-Tracy Farmer (KY); T-Mark E. Casse.

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Texas Derby, Sexton Mile Top Lone Star Stakes Schedule

Fri, 2020-01-31 16:20

Officials at Lone Star Park have announced the track’s richest stakes schedule in a decade, topped by the inaugural running of the $300,000 Texas Derby (May 25) and the state’s only graded race, the $300,000 GIII Steve Sexton Mile (Apr. 26). In total, Lone Star will play host to a dozen added-money events worth a combined $1.425 million, up $300,000 from 2019 and richest since 2011.

Minor stakes races that previously offered $50,000 in purse money have all increased by 50% to $75,000 for 2020.

“We are super excited about running the first Texas Derby this year,” said Lone Star Park’s Director of Racing, Bart Lang. “Featured with the $100,000 Lone Star Park Turf S. Memorial Day racing returns to one of our best days on the schedule.”

Lone Star Park will conduct racing from Thursday. Apr. 16 through Sunday, July 19.

Click here for the entire stakes schedule.

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DJ Stable Acquires Ceci Valentina

Fri, 2020-01-31 14:09

The Green family’s DJ Stable has privately acquired multiple stakes winner Ceci Valentina (Prospective) from owner/breeder Amalio Ruiz-Lozano and transferred the sophomore filly to trainer Joe Orseno. A winner of the FTBOA Florida Sire Susan’s Girl S. at Gulfstream last August and the Juvenile Fillies Sprint S. at Gulfstream Park West in November, the dark bay was last seen finishing fourth beaten just a half-length in Tampa’s Gasparilla S. over seven panels Jan. 18.

“We just moved her to our barn this morning and want to see how she does over the next few weeks,” DJ General Manager Jon Green told TDN when asked about upcoming targets for the new purchase. “Hopefully you will see her in the [Feb. 29 GII] Davona Dale [S. at Gulfstream] and then the [Mar. 29 Stonehedge Farm South Sophomore Fillies S. at Tampa]. Orseno has trained some really talented horses over the years, so I will be leaning on his insight over the next week or so.”

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Maker Files Complaint Against Zayat; Diodoro May Be Next

Fri, 2020-01-31 13:47

Ahmed Zayat’s legal problems continue to grow. Trainer Mike Maker filed a complaint in Jefferson County (Kentucky) Court Thursday seeking $120,921 over what he alleged are unpaid training bills. Maker’s complaint was filed less than two weeks after a Kentucky court ordered Zayat’s assets into receivership, the result of claims by an investment group that says Zayat owes it $23 million.

Maker’s complaint was first reported by BloodHorse.

According to the complaint, Maker trained as many as eight horses for Zayat Stables, which was falling behind on paying its training bills. Maker said that he was prepared to take legal action in September, but, instead, worked out a payment plan in which Zayat was required to send him $10,000 a month. The trainer said the installment payments often weren’t made on time and the monthly bill for January was not paid at all.

“Back in September, I thought it was getting out of control,” Maker said. “We were going to file suit then and they made a settlement agreement, which we came to terms on. He defaulted on that on Jan. 15. I figured enough is enough. I might as well do what was inevitable.”

Maker said he no longer trains any horses for Zayat.

Zayat uses several different trainers currently and at least one, Robertino Diodoro, appears ready to also take legal action. Diodoro said he is owed a significant amount of money by Zayat and is prepared to take steps to collect on overdue bills.

Zayat’s most recent financial problems came to light when New York-trainer Rudy Rodriguez came forward and claimed that Zayat owed him more than $600,000 in unpaid bills. Rodriguez was set to sell the two horses he trained for Zayat and keep the proceeds, but did not have to do so after he and Zayat came to terms. Last week, a Fayette County (Kentucky) judge granted a motion to put Zayat’s assets into a receivership. That was the result of a lawsuit file by MGG Investment Group, which said it was owed $23 million by Zayat. MGG also alleged that Zayat had sold shares in American Pharoah, which the company claimed were to be used as collateral against his debt. That was noted in Maker’s complaint.

“Defendants had no intention of honoring the settlement agreement, as the Defendants had already notified other creditors of their insolvent status and, according to published reports, begun to liquidate assets without notifying creditors,” it read.

Zayat has gone to court seeking to dissolve the order appointing a receiver.

Aware of Zayat’s financial problems, Maker said he was not confident he would get paid. He added that many trainers have to deal with owners who do not pay their bills.

“You hear all the complaints about Lasix and the integrity of the game when this sort of thing is a huge part of the game that everybody is afraid to mention,” he said. “You go around and ask trainers how much money they get beat out of every year by owners and it is pretty alarming. We go to a gas station and there’s a sign at the pump that says if you drive away without paying you will lose your license. If we go to a restaurant and eat and run off you will get arrested. Go to Walmart and walk out with pack of gum and you will get arrested. But these guys come into this industry and don’t pay the trainers and nothing happens.”

Diodoro, who is best known as a claiming trainer and says he has four horses for Zayat, told TDN that Zayat owes him “a large amount of money.” He declined to say exactly how much the debt is.

“I’m not sure what I’m going to do yet but I have to do something,” he said. “It is a large amount of money and I wish I could just sweep it under the rug. I’m not in a position where I can afford to do that. I am going to have to do something and do it fairly quickly. I’m no high roller and we are talking about a lot of money.”

Diodoro said he has contacted an attorney. He said Zayat’s bills had been piling up for “six plus months.”

“It could have been worse because at one point I had 12 for them,” he said. “Hopefully, it works out for everyone. This game is tough enough to make it, never mind making it when you’re put in a position like this.”

Many of Zayat’s better horses are trained by Richard Baltas. The list includes Desert Stone (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}), the winner of the Jan. 4 GII San Gabriel S. at Santa Anita. Baltas said he is owed money by Zayat, but he said he wasn’t prepared to take any legal action.

“Yes, there is money owed,” he said. “They owe me a lot of money. But I have been winning races for them and getting horses claimed and they have been paying me. I don’t want to get into the number. But it’s not like they are totally defaulting and not calling me or not sending me money. It’s just that I’ve been carrying them a little bit longer than I want to.”

Baltas said that he was waiting to see what came out of the MGG legal action and that, if it came down to it, he would follow the court’s instructions so far as how to proceed with the Zayat horses.

“If the court tells me to sell the horses I will sell the horses,” he said. “I just have to make sure I get paid before the horses leave the barn.”

D. Wayne Lukas has one horse for Zayat and also said he was dealing with unpaid bills.

“I’m going to ride this out and see if the receiver will at least pay the training bills,” said Lukas, who declined to reveal how much he is owed. “I haven’t done anything legally. I just hope someone steps up and makes sure things are done properly. I will give courts every chance to make it right.”

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Foal Deaths From Nocardioform Placentitis Spiking in Kentucky

Thu, 2020-01-30 17:37

A spike in foal deaths caused by nocardioform placentitis has been reported in Kentucky as the first month of the 2020 Thoroughbred foaling season comes to a close.

As of late Thursday afternoon, the number of equine abortions reported by the University of Kentucky Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (UKVDL) stood at 44. The UKVDL’s statewide map of the foal deaths listed 29 in Fayette County alone. Other abortions listed by county include six each in Woodford and Bourbon, and one each in Shelby, Scott, and Harrison. You can view the interactive UKVDL map here. Note that it accounts for all reported equine deaths, and is not Thoroughbred-specific.

Dr. Barry Ball, a veterinarian with the University of Kentucky’s Gluck Equine Research Center who holds the Albert G. Clay Endowed Chair in Equine Reproduction, told TDN that in a normal year, the number of foal deaths from nocardioform placentitis might be in the single digits or low teens by this time of the season.

“This would be a significant upturn from those numbers, and right now it’s looking like it’s on par with numbers reported in 2017 and 2011,” said Ball, referring to Kentucky’s two most recent breeding seasons that saw spikes in foal deaths from nocardioform placentitis. “Both of those years were significant upturns, and this certainly looks like it’s heading in that direction.”

Dr. Karen Wolfsdorf, a reproduction specialist at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, told TDN the situation calls for vigilance–not panic–at this point.

“While I do think we have an increase in incidence this year, it’s still not the worst that it’s been, or at ‘epidemic’ levels,” Wolfsdorf said. “It’s just something to be aware of that is on the increase this year.”

Wolfsdorf gave an overview of what nocardioform placentitis is, how it’s diagnosed, and what warning symptoms Thoroughbred farm personnel can look for in pregnant mares.

“Nocardioform placentitis is a group of organisms that forms mucous production that then causes separation of the placenta from the mare’s uterus,” Wolfsdorf explained. “So it stops nutrients and oxygen getting from the mare to the fetus, which can damage and be life-threatening to the foal.”

Foals can either be stillborn or born in a weakened state that requires euthanization. Some foals are “born alive and do perfectly fine” in cases where mares have only a small lesion, Wolfsdorf said.

“There are two main types of nocardioform placentitis that we see most commonly,” Wolfsdorf said. “One is the bacterial organism Crossiela equi. The other one is Amycolatopsis. We tend to see foals either aborted or born a month early with the Crossiela equi, as opposed to Amycolatopsis, where [foals] seem to have a better survival rate or live foal rate. It depends on when the mare is infected or when the lesions start to form as well as how large those lesions are, because that will determine how much nutrients and oxygen that foal is deprived of.”

Wolfsdorf noted that nocardioform placentitis differs from placentitis caused by an “ascending infection,” which is when pathogens get past a mare’s vulva to ascend through the reproductive tract.

In nocardioform placentitis, “we don’t know how it gets there,” Wolfsdorf said.

“We believe it’s in the soil in the environment,” Wolfsdorf continued. “We don’t know how it gets to the uterus. But the lesions that you see are pretty characteristic, and they’re usually found at the base of the horns of the uterus or in the body of the uterus. This is unlike ascending placentitis.”

The first clinical signs of nocardioform placentitis are usually vaginal discharge and premature lactation.

“Usually how we identify it is when a mare starts to develop a mammary gland prematurely,” Wolfsdorf said. “Usually that’s associated with placentitis or twins.”

Wolfsdorf said that if those signs are present, the first step is to rule out ascending placentitis by ultrasound. Then a different ultrasound view will be used to look for the distinctive nocardioform placentitis lesions.

But that diagnostic method is far from perfect.

“It’s more of a rule-in than a rule-out process,” Wolfsdorf said. “If [a nocardioform lesion] is there, you can see it. But if it’s not there, it doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have it, because the area where the lesion can be is so small and the surface area of the uterus is so large.”

Ball agreed: “The difficulty with those kinds of clinical signs is that the disease is pretty far progressed by the time you see some of those changes,” he said.

“We don’t have good diagnostic techniques for early diagnosis,” Ball added. “That’s something that we’ve been working on for awhile. Ultrasound of the placenta is being used with some success, but the sensitivity of that is uncertain. It may only be useful in relatively late cases, but we are seeing it being used at farms that are at risk ”

Wolfsdorf explained how farm personnel can be on the lookout for those first clinical signs.

“Monitor the mare for premature mammary gland development,” Wolfsdorf said. “And then just practice good husbandry. Look under the tail every day to make sure there are no signs of a discharge there. Make sure the mare is acting and behaving normally.”

Wolfsdorf pointed out that vigilance should also extend to foals that appear totally healthy, underscoring her earlier point about how a foal can be born without complications even if the mare had nocardioform lesions.

“The only way you know sometimes if they had that disease is by examining the placenta,” Wolfsdorf said. “That’s another thing farm personnel can do–make sure to turn the placentas inside out both ways, so you look at not only the white shiny side, but you look at the red side, where you’re going to see these lesions. And if you see that you’re having an increased number of lesions, then maybe it’s time to be proactive and ultrasound your mares transabdominally to see if you can identify any more lesions.”

“It’s a disease that although there’s been a lot of research to try and determine where it comes from, it still eludes us,” Wolfsdorf said. “It’s very farm-dependent, area-dependent. We don’t know why some farms have it and some farms don’t have it.”

Both Ball and Wolfsdorf noted there appears to be a spike of the disease in years when unseasonably warm weather precedes foaling seasons.

“Hot, dry Augusts and Septembers are statistically associated with an increased incidence of the disease in the following winter and spring,” Ball said, noting that he is in the process of completing a 30-year historical study on potential effects of weather on nocardioform placentitis.

“We don’t know what the meaning of that association is,” Ball said. “But it’s a statistically significant relationship. It doesn’t mean it’s a cause. It just means that there is some association, and we don’t yet understand” what that is.

This past autumn, parts of Kentucky broke dryness and heat records, with a string of rainless, 90-degree days extending through September. On Oct. 1, a National Weather Service meteorologist based in Louisville described conditions statewide as “really, literally, the summer that won’t end.”

Ball said future projects he is involved with might yield better clarity.

“Nocardioform placentitis is on our radar. It has been for a long time,” Ball said. “We’re finishing a study right now looking at the genome-wide transcript of those kinds of tissues, basically looking at gene expression across the placentas of mares with those diseases compared to controls. We know a lot more about the inflammatory picture associated with it. But that hasn’t given us much in the way of clues about the etiology in terms of how this starts.

“We’ve also done some pretty extensive studies with inoculating mares trying to reproduce the disease,” Ball summed up. “But to date we have not had any success. So we clearly have a lot to learn.”

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Latest Fasig February Supplements Now Online

Thu, 2020-01-30 16:15

Fasig-Tipton has catalogued an additional 36 entries for its 2020 Kentucky Winter Mixed Sale supplemental catalogue and they are now online.

The latest entries include:

  • Stakes winner Jenda’s Agenda (Proud Citizen) (Hip 614), who is carrying her first foal by Justify.
  • Jilted in the City (City Zip) (Hip 611), a full-sister to MGSW and sire Run Away and Hide.
  • Evocative (Pioneerof the Nile) (Hip 610), a 3-year-old half-sister to MGSW Justwhistledixie (Dixie Union), who is the dam of GISW New Year’s Day (Street Cry {Ire}), MGSW Mohaymen (Tapit), GSW Kingly (Tapit) and recent GIII Lecomte S. winner Enforceable (Tapit).
  • GSW Brooklynsway (Giant Gizmo) (Hip 644), who will be followed into the ring by her yearling filly by Uncle Mo (Hip 645).

The Fasig-Tipton February Sale will be held Feb. 10 and 11 with the supplemental entries following the completion of the regular catalogue Tuesday.

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Golden Gate Cancels Racing the Rest of the Week Due to Lack of Hot Water

Thu, 2020-01-30 15:55

Golden Gate Fields has cancelled racing for the rest of the week after repairs from a gas leak in the area surrounding the track damaged the facility’s hot water system. In addition to affecting food and beverage at the track, the issue impacts backstretch workers and the track is installing portable hot water showers for them during the repair process.
“There is no concern of a gas leak at Golden Gate Fields,” said David Duggan, Vice President & General Manager, Golden Gate Fields. “Unfortunately, there was a leak in the area Thursday. In order to repair it, the utility company responsible for the gas line had to shut off the gas to the track. When they re-pressurized the lines afterwards, it did some damage to the pipes that supply hot water to the facility. After speaking with specialists, it’s highly unlikely we will be fixed this weekend, so in the best interest of our horsemen, fans and employees and to safely expedite the repairs, we are cancelling both racing and simulcasting this weekend. We feel confident we can be fully up and running by Thursday.”

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Notable US-Bred & -Sired Runners in Japan: Feb. 1 & 2, 2020

Thu, 2020-01-30 15:52

In this continuing series, we take a look ahead at US-bred and/or conceived runners entered for the upcoming weekend at the tracks on the Japan Racing Association circuit, with a focus on pedigree and/or performance in the sales ring. Here are the horses of interest for this weekend running at Kokura, Kyoto and Tokyo Racecourses, the latter of which hosts the G3 Negishi S. and has attracted its defending champion Copano Kicking (Spring At Last) and G1SW Mozu Ascot (Frankel {GB}) making his dirt debut:

Saturday, February 1, 2020
2nd-KYO, ¥11,400,000 ($105k), Newcomers, 3yo, 1200m
MIAMI TESORO (c, 3, Speightstown–Run a Risk, by Distorted Humor), a $160K Keeneland September yearling, is the second foal to the races from his multiple stakes-placed dam, a half-sister to GSWs Rey de Cafe (Kingmambo) and El Crespo (A.P. Indy); and to SW Tricky Causeway. The chestnut’s third dam Tricky Game (Majestic Light) was a half to Seeking the Gold (Mr. Prospector) and produced MGSW/MGISP King Cugat (Kingmambo). A Medaglia d’Oro half-brother to Miami Tesoro fetched $240K from Mike Ryan at KEESEP last fall. Owner Kenji Ryotokuji campaigned this sire’s MSW & G1SP Rieno Tesoro. B-G Watts Humphrey Jr (KY)

4th-TOK, ¥13,830,000 ($127k), Allowance, 3yo, 1600m
SUNRISE RAPPORT (JPN) (c, 3, Constitution–Kara’s Match Point, by Curlin) validated debut odds of 6-5 to post a three-length victory over 1800 meters at Hanshin Dec. 21 (see below, gate 12). His dam, a half-sister to GISW Dancing Rags (Union Rags) and MGSW Coup de Grace (Tapit), was purchased for $450K carrying this foal in utero at KEENOV in 2016. Sunrise Rapport’s third dam was champion and GI Breeders’ Cup Distaff winner Jewel Princess (Key to the Mint). B-Shimokobe Farm



10th-KOK, ¥19,110,000 ($176k), Allowance, 3yo, 1700m
CLEPAT (f, 3, American Pharoah–Intelyhente, by Smart Strike) became her sire’s first Japanese winner when taking out an 1800m Hanshin maiden by open lengths Sept. 15 (see below, gate 3), but may have struggled with a rain-affected track when down the field in the Cattleya Sho (allowance) at Tokyo Nov. 23. A $310K KEESEP yearling, the April foal is a half-sister to SP Count Alexander (Scat Daddy) and her dam is a full-sister to MGSW Bel Air Beauty, dam of Canadian champion Stacked Deck (First Samurai) and GSP Valentino Beauty (Vindication). B-William Duignan & Tranquility Investments Limited (KY)



Sunday, February 2, 2020
11th-TOK, Negishi S.-G3, ¥72,000,000 ($662k), 3yo/up, 1400m
Arguably Japan’s top dirt horse from 1200-1400m, COPANO KICKING (g, 5, Spring At Last–Celadon, by Gold Halo {Jpn}) is back to defend his title in this event en route to possible major targets near-term. Victorious in nine of his 15 career starts and only twice out of the top three, the $19K KEESEP RNA turned $100K Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream breezer exits a comprehensive score in the G3 Capella S. (see below, gate 7), a race he also annexed in 2019 en route to the Negishi. Copano Kicking, who could go on to the G1 February S. (1600m) at Tokyo in three weeks’ time, also holds entries for the $1.5-million Riyadh Dirt Sprint (1200m) late next month and the G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen (1200m) in March. Connections have also expressed an interest in the GI Breeders’ Cup Sprint. G1SW Mozu Ascot (Frankel {GB}), a son of MGSW India (Hennessy), tries the dirt for the first time here. B-Reiley McDonald (KY)



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Tapwrit’s First Foal Arrives

Thu, 2020-01-30 15:22

GI Belmont S. winner Tapwrit (Tapit) was represented by his first foal Jan. 27. The colt out of Anna Elizabeth (Animal Kingdom) was born at Waymore Farms in Kentucky. Tapwrit stands at Gainesway for $12,500.

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