|Arlington Park Barn Notes
Contact: Graham Ross
(847) 385-7500 ext. 7319
In today's notes:
Earlier this year, four weeks after breaking his maiden going a mile and an eighth on the grass March 10, trainer Jerry Fanning entered Wenga Enterprises, Inc.'s Cherokee Kim back in the Grade I Santa Anita Derby.
The colt by Cherokee Colony finished fifth behind Thoroughbred Corp.'s Point Given, who went on to capture the Grade I Preakness and the Grade I Belmont Stakes.
"He got too far back in the Santa Anita Derby," said Fanning of Cherokee Kim. "He wasn't going to beat Point Given that day, but he might have done a little better against the others in front of him. In his last race at Hollywood Park on the dirt, jockey Eddie Delahoussaye told me he was just slipping behind all the way around."
Cherokee Kim, due to fly into Chicago and be on the grounds at Arlington Park Wednesday afternoon, is one of the prime candidates for Saturday's Grade II Arlington Classic, presented by Woodford Reserve. That mile and an eighth fixture, the first Grade II race of the summer season at Arlington this year, is also the first leg of Arlington's Mid-America Triple. The Mid-America Triple continues July 23 with the Grade II American Derby and concludes with the Grade I Secretariat as part of the International Festival of Racing August 18, Arlington Million Day.
"I think the grass courses in California are just too hard for him," said Fanning, over the phone from California earlier this week, when explaining his decision to send Cherokee Kim to Arlington. "There's not a better grass course in the country than Arlington's, and if he gets a good pace in front of him, I expect he'll run well.
"I nominated him for the whole (Mid-America Triple) series," said Fanning, "but I'm not sure yet how he'll fit with those kind of horses coming in later. He's just a big, old galloping horse who really wants to go a mile and a quarter or a mile and a half."
P. Miessler & C. Raber's Fan Club's Mister, who won the $100,000 Canterbury Derby at that Minnesota oval in his last trip to the post, will represent local horsewoman Rickey Harris in Saturday's Arlington Classic.
"He's a very nice colt," said the conditioner during training hours mid-week. "My only trepidation is 'Can he run a mile and an eighth?' Other than that, he's ready to go. I know he's a good miler, and he ran a big number in a mile and a sixteenth race at Gulfstream this winter.
"But in his two mile-and-an-eighth races, the Spiral and the Illinois Derby, he didn't run well," Harris said. "He had bad trips in both of those races, so I'm hoping the grass will be different. I know he likes the turf.
"If he runs good Saturday," Harris concluded. "I'll run him in the other two races (American Derby and Secretariat). If he doesn't, than we'll be shopping for a mile and and mile-and-a-sixteenth races."
The 70th running of the Grade III Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf will be run Sunday at a mile and a half on the grass, and On Target Racing Stable's Williams News, winner of last year's edition, is set to defend his championship.
According to Arlington stakes coordinator Chris Polzin, likely to oppose Williams News, now a 6-year-old, are: Catherine R. Willis's Craigsteel, third in Keeneland's Grade III Elkhorn at last asking April 25; Gary A. Tanaka's Falcon Flight, fifth in the Grade I Charles Whittingham June 10; and M. Conway, K. Hoffman & Team Canonie's Profit Option, second in the $100,000 Louisville Handicap June 2.
Possible for the Stars and Stripes are: the Estate of Thomas Mueller's Chorwon, second in allowance company at Churchill June 14; and Mark Stanley's Three Wonders, sixth in the Louisville Handicap.
Arlington Park baseball hats will be given away Saturday to the first 3,000 members of the Twin Spires Club in attendance.
As an added incentive, guests attending Saturday may sign up for the Twin Spires Club free of charge when they arrive and still be included in the baseball hat giveaway.
The Twin Spires Club is the player-reward program at Arlington Park, Calder Race Course, Churchill Downs and their OTBs. A member of the Twin Spires Club earns points and benefits each time he or she wagers at the participating locations.
On Sunday at Arlington, a group photo of the Arlington Park jockey colony will be taken, to be distributed the following Saturday, July 7 as part of the Jockeys Across America activities on that day.
Also on Sunday, the Grade III Stars and Stripes will be one of four races televised on CBS as part of that network's NTRA Champions Series.
The show, scheduled to air from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Central time, also includes the Grade II Suburban Handicap from Belmont Park, the Grade I United Nations Handicap from Monmouth Park, and the Grade I Hollywood Gold Cup from Hollywood Park.
Playing Friday during Arlington's "Miller Lite Party In The Park" program will be the band "Tumbleweed," who plays favorites from many famous artists such as the Eagles, Jimmy Buffet, and Led Zeppelin. Also in the Park Friday, WXRT's Lin Brehmer will be on hand from 3 to 5 p.m.
Leading rider Mark Guidry has now posted back-to-back riding triples, after tallying on Sunday with Panic Stable LLC's Blushing Caller in the fourth; Kissoon Thoroughbreds, et al's Jainarain in the seventh; and Nelson Bunker Hunt's Hattiesburg in the featured Ribbon Stakes as the eighth race of the day. Guidry had 16 winners through Sunday, twice as many as his nearest pursuer, Zoe Cadman, who has been astride eight.
Jockey Eddie Perez had his second consecutive riding double on Sunday with a score astride Team Block's Slide To Glory in the fifth and Kimberlie Molinaro's Reid It N The News in the finale. It was also the second day in a row that Perez had closed out the racing program with a win.
Trainer Chris Block, trainer for Team Block and others, has jumped into a three-way tie with Wayne Catalano and Jerry Hollendorfer for the lead in the trainer standings through Sunday's program. All three have saddled five winners.
Jockey Jeremy Beasley has changed agents. His engagments are now being handled by Ronnie Ebanks, who also books mounts for Mark Guidry.
Apprentice Gilbert Concha, who made his Arlington debut June 17 aboard Terry Bruner's Baby Princess, is an arrival from Lone Star Park. His engagements are being handled locally by agent Charlie Chiple, who also books mounts for veteran Lupe Macias.
On June 27, 1927 ground was broken for the original Arlington Park grandstand.
On June 28, 1989 the new Arlington building opened for its first racing day.
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