|Arlington Park Barn Notes
Contact: Graham Ross
(847) 385-7500 ext. 7319
In today's notes:
An exciting annual postscript to the Grade II Arlington Classic is its preview of the Grade II American Derby and Grade I Secretariat as the latter legs of Arlington's Mid-America Triple, and this year appears to be no exception.
Wenga Enterprises, Inc.'s Cherokee Kim, third in the Arlington Classic June 30, shipped to Chicago from Southern California for Arlington's Triple on the turf. Before the Classic, California trainer Jerry Fanning called his colt a "big old galloping type that really wants to go a mile and a quarter or a mile and a half."
Now, Fanning has gone fishing in Alaska, and left Cherokee Kim under the care of local horseman Jerry Calvin, who reported Cherokee Kim came out of the Classic in good order. Calvin also agrees with Fanning's assessment of his horse as one who would appreciate the added distance of the American Derby at a mile and three-sixteenths July 22. After that comes the Secretariat at a mile and a quarter August 18 as part of the International Festival of Racing on Arlington Million Day, and that race should suit him even more.
"One other reason he might improve next time is because he will have had a chance to acclimate a little bit," Calvin said. "They told me that he never took a drink of water during the whole 16 hours of his trip here, and yet when I opened the door of that van there wasn't a dry spot on him. But as you can see, he looks fine this morning. He's really settled in."
Pat & Cliff Raber's Fan Club's Mister, fourth in the Arlington Classic, is also a somewhat surprising possibility for the American Derby after a courageous performance that included a speed duel not to his advantage.
Before the Classic, trainer Rickey Harris was going to use the Classic to find out if her horse could get the mile and an eighth. Now she thinks it wasn't the distance of ground, but the post position, that proved her colt's undoing.
"I hate that (rail) post," said Harris. "In his last race (a winning effort in the Canterbury Breeders' Cup Derby), he broke from the outside and was able to relax and run his race. This time from the rail, he wasn't able to relax at any point of the race, but he ran his heart out as long as he could. If I'd have been able to get the trip that Billy's horse (the winning Baptize, trained by Bill Mott) did, I think my horse would have done a lot better. I don't think it was the distance of ground that got him. Randy (jockey Meier) wants to go on to the next one (American Derby), and I might just do that. My horse ran his heart out, and came back fine."
Trainer Steve Hobby, who saddled Keith Plaisance's Rahy's Secret to finish fifth in the Arlington Classic, reported that his colt was doing fine the morning after the first leg of the Mid-America Triple.
"He had a little mucous, but that's nothing," said Hobby. "He came back fine, and he was fine in the paddock yesterday.
"I guess I'll go ahead and aim for that next race (the American Derby)," Hobby said.
Trainer Wayne Catalano, who saddled Curlew Flyer for owner Frank C. Calabrese in the Classic, reported that his new charge came out of the race in fine fettle despite trailing the field throughout.
Curlew Flyer, an Irish-bred gelding who was making his first start in this country, had only made four previous starts in his career - all of them in France.
"He ran a pretty decent race," Catalano said. "At least I thought he did. He's just a little green."
Arlington Owner, Trainer, and Jockey Awards for the month of June will be announced Thursday, with presentation ceremonies on Friday.
Barn of the Month honors will be announced and presented Thursday.
Jockey Zoe Cadman, who traveled to Philadelphia Park Saturday for a mount astride Impending Bear in the $100,000 Dr. James Penny Memorial Handicap for trainer Mike Stidham, finished third in that Pennsylvania outing.
David P. Holloway Racing, Inc.'s Bet On Sunshine, a who has won two of the three runnings of the $100,000 Arlington Sprint, captured Saturday's Grade III Aristides Handicap at Churchill Downs. The Bet Big gelding is now a 9-year-old.
Jockey Rene Douglas had a consecutive riding double at Arlington Saturday, capturing the sixth with John Castro's Mr. High Tops and coming right back with Marta Racing Ventures' Feminine Fury in the seventh, which also served as the American Airlines Sweepstakes race.
Jockey Lonnie Meche also had a riding double, visiting the winner's circle after the fifth with Louie J. Roussel III's Always On Time, and returning after the finale of the afternoon aboard Earl Silver's Bandana.
Trainers Chris Block and Jerry Hollendorfer are tied for leading trainer honors through Saturday with seven wins apiece. Block won the fifth race Saturday with Richard L. Duchossois' Good Humor and Hollendorfer saddled Feminine Fury in the seventh.
On July 4, 1938, 63 years ago Wednesday, the great Seabiscuit was upset by War Minstrel in the Stars and Stripes Handicap. Seabiscuit, making his only Chicago appearance, carried 130 pounds, spotting the winner 23 pounds.
On July 4, 1941, 60 years ago Wednesday, a record Chicago crowd of 50,638 came to Arlington Park to watch Steel Heels upset Equifox in the Stars and Stripes Handicap.
On July 4, 1955, 46 years ago Wednesday, popular Arlington trainer Gene Cilio saddled his first winner at Chicago's premier oval, posing in the winner's circle with Mark's Richey, ridden by W. E. Carroll.
On July 4, 1976, 25 years ago, the first Sunday racing program in Illinois history was held at Arlington Park. A crowd of 22,259 wagered $2,164,476 on the nine-race card highlighted by Fifth Marine winning the American Derby.
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