|Arlington Park Barn Notes
Contact: Graham Ross
(847) 385-7500 ext. 7319
In today's notes:
The 67th running of the $200,000 Arlington Classic, presented by Woodford Reserve, will be contested June 30 at a mile and an eighth on the grass as the first Grade II event of the Arlington Park season as well as the inaugural leg of Arlington's Mid-America Triple.
The following afternoon, on Family Day Sunday, July 1, Chicago's premier Thoroughbred oval will present the 70th running of the Grade III Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf at a mile and a half over Arlington's world famous grass course.
At this early juncture, stakes coordinator Chris Polzin has checked off several names whose connections have shown some interest in the Arlington Classic.
K. K. & Vilasini Jayaraman's Royal Spy, winner of the $200,000 USA Stakes at Lone Star Park May 28, was also fourth in the Grade II Arkansas Derby April 14.
CRK Stable's Dr. Park was second in Lone Star's USA Stakes, contested at a mile and a sixteenth on the grass and won the Grade III Will Rogers at Hollywood Park April 20.
Gary & Mary West's Baptize was third in the USA at the Texas oval, and stakes placed in the Grade III Crown Royal American Turf at Churchill Downs May 4.
James & F. Lyon & J. Lacombe Racing Stable's Indygo Shiner won the Grade III Jefferson Cup at Churchill Downs June 9.
Also, Wenga Enterprises, Inc.'s Cherokee Kim was third in the $100,000 California Sires Stakes June 9 at Hollywood Park and P. Miessler & C. Raber's Fan Club's Mister won the $100,000 Canterbury Derby in Minnesota June 2.
Other nominees possible for the Arlington Classic include: Richard Englander's Moomtazz, fourth in the Grade III Jersey Derby at Monmouth Park Memorial Day weekend; and Keith Plaisance's Rahy's Secret, second in the Canterbury Derby.
Heading the list of names showing interest in the Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf July 1 is the defending champion Williams News, owned by On Target Racing and trained by Tom Amoss. Williams News won the Grade III Elkhorn at Keeneland this spring.
Augustin Stables' With Anticipation won the $100,000 Louisville Handicap June 2 at Churchill Downs.
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel has nominated both Gary A. Tanaka's Sumitas, and Edmund A. Gann's Timboroa. The former, a German-bred, was fourth in the Grade I Manhattan June 9 while the British-bred Timboroa was third in the Grade I Charles Whittingham at Hollywood Park June 10.
Others considered possible for the Stars and Stripes at this time include: Tanaka's French-bred Falcon Flight, fifth in the Whittingham; Epona Farms & Elizabeth H. Alexander's Irish-bred Lonely Place, third in an allowance race at Arlington June 15; and Mi Cielo Partnership, Jack Smith et al's Mi Sierra, winner of an allowance race at Churchill June 17.
Nelson Bunker Hunt's Hattiesburg, a winner of her last three starts, will attempt to extend her victory skein to four when she heads a field of eight 3-year-old fillies in Sunday's featured attraction, the $50,000-added Ribbon Stakes at seven furlongs.
If the field of sophomore distaffers remains intact, the extended sprint will have a gross value of $54,000 with a $32,400 share of that sum going to the owners of the victress.
In her last trip to the post, Hattiesburg won the $75,000 Wafare Farm Stakes at Lone Star Park on May 19, coming from off the pace to get up by a neck in the final strides.
Previously, the chestnut filly captured the $50,000 Goldfinch Stakes at Prairie Meadows by two lengths on April 28, and won an allowance race on the grass at the Fair Grounds by a neck February 11.
Sharing the top impost of 121 pounds with Hattiesburg is My Jo Lee Stable's Soul Onarazorsedge, who won her last start in Hawthorne's $40,000 Pollyanna Pixie June 1 by a length and three quarters. In her previous effort, she was seventh in Woodbine's Star Shoot Stakes April 7, but may have been compromised by a racing strip rated "good."
Mark Guidry, last year's riding champion at Arlington, is named to handle the reins on Hattiesburg, and Hawthorne's leading rider Zoe Cadman is listed astride Soul Onarazorsedge.
Completing the field for the Ribbon are: W. & S. Dobozi Partnership's Abba Gold, Alfredo Juarez Jr.; Nancy & Bob Bartels, Amybdancing, Chris Valovich; Marc Goldish & Savoy Stable's Best Prize, E. T. Baird; Lafayette Meadows & Marta Racing Ventures' Bullish Miss, Frank Alvarado; Leba & Mike Milkes' Sams Tune, Ray Sibille; and Louie J. Rousell III's Heart of a Chief, Randy Meier. All of those will carry 116 pounds.
Jockey Frank Lovato Jr., who is riding in his first full season at Arlington Park, rode his first two winners of the local season on Thursday.
Lovato won Thursday's sixth race with Peter Bradley III & Dennis Drazin's Flinch, a British-bred filly making her second appearance in this country for trainer Dick Lundy; and came right back in the seventh to score with Thomas R. Durant's Lunar Bounty, a first time starter trained by Ronny Werner who comes to Arlington from Lone Star Park this season.
Lovato, 38, whose 17-year-old daughter Megan will graduate from Central High in Valley Stream, N.Y. today (Friday), was pleased to be here for the beginning of the meeting this summer in contrast to last year, when he arrived in July.
"I'm really looking forward to this summer and getting recognized at a track like Arlington," said Lovato. "We really like the clients we are riding for. This is my agent Britt McGehee's backyard (a former trainer who saddled Frank Calabrese's Silver Maiden to win the 1997 Arlington-Washington Lassie.)
"I had a good winter with Britt in New Orleans, and a good spring at Keeneland," said Lovato, "but at the Fair Grounds there is a real smorgasbord of trainers and my agent was just getting his feet wet. This is the place we were looking forward to. This (Arlington) was the main part of the plan."
Lovato's father, who rode mostly on the Mid-Atlantic circuit as Frank Lovato during the '60s and '70s, was the regular rider of Delaware Handicap and Diana Handicap winner Open Fire, as well as Gardenia and Matchmaker winner Alma North.
The younger Lovato is also an inventor, holding a patent on Equicizer, a bicycle-like contraption that allows people to simulate riding a horse in a controlled, safe environment. He has built over 400 of them, and placed them all over the world, even in unlikely places such as Malaysia, Korea and Africa.
Lovato, also a musician, performs in a band that plays mostly in Saratoga Springs called the Off Track Band. They play classic rock in a racetrackers' gathering spot called The Parting Glass.
At Royal Ascot earlier today, Lord Lloyd-Webber's Crystal Music finished second and Godolphin's Tempting Fate finished second and third in the Group I Coronation Stakes.
Both are nominees to this summer's Grade I Beverly D. at Arlington, to be contested August 18 as part of the International Festival of Racing.
Lord Lloyd-Webber, of course, is more commonly recognized as songwriter Andrew Lloyd-Webber, author of "Phantom of the Opera" and numerous other successful musicals.
San Gabriel Investments & Sidney L. Port Trust's Until Sundown, a nominee to the Grade II Arlington Classic and the Mid-America Triple, won the Grade III Affirmed at Hollywood Park on Sunday.
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