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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Arlington Park Barn Notes (8/20/05)
Contact: Graham Ross
In today's notes:
Ken Ramsey, the nation's Eclipse Award-winning owner last year, admitted to being considerably more upbeat Saturday morning than he was Friday afternoon following the announcement of the retirement of Roses in May due to a torn tendon in the horse's left front leg.
"I'm doing a lot better today than I was yesterday," Ramsey said Saturday morning, speaking over the phone from upstate New York less than 24 hours after the disclosure of the Grade I Dubai World Cup winner's career-ending injury. "It (yesterday's announcement) was a downer, but it's all a part of life. If you can't take the bad, you have no business enjoying the good. It's all about highs and lows."
A year ago at Arlington Park, Ramsey and his wife Sarah posed in the winner's circle with their sophomore turf star Kitten's Joy following 2004's Grade I Secretariat during Arlington's International Festival of Racing, and a week ago, Kitten's Joy went to the post as the odds-on choice in 2005's Grade I Arlington Million, only to finish second by three lengths to Mrs. John Magnier's Powerscourt.
"We had a great time at Arlington," said Ramsey of Kitten's Joy's participation in last week's signature race of the Chicago Thoroughbred racing season. "We were just second best that day, but now we're looking forward to his future."
What does the future hold for Kitten's Joy?
"We had dinner last night with several of the people involved," said Ramsey, "including my trainer Dale Romans and Patrick Biancone (Ramsey's advisor with experience in the Group I Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe Lucien Barrière). I like to sleep on my decisions overnight, so I made my final decision this morning. Dale has a horse in at Saratoga later today so we're going to make the announcement (about Kitten's Joy's future) later today to everybody at the same time. We're going to let the NYRA handle it however they want to do it.
"All I can tell you before we make the announcement is that Kitten's Joy has been training super the last few days," Ramsey said, "and we're looking forward to the next race."
Veteran Illinois reinsman Randy Meier, injured in a starting gate mishap before the second race on Arlington Million Day a week ago, has suffered a hairline fracture of the fibia (a non-weight-bearing bone in the calf) in his right leg, but estimates a return to riding well before the 2005 Arlington Park season ends Sept. 18.
"The doctor told me you just have to let it heal on it's own," said Meier Saturday morning, speaking over the phone from his home. "He told me as soon as the soreness goes away I could ride.
"Actually, I broke the same bone in my left leg while skiing about 15 years ago," said Meier. "That time it happened at the same time the shuttle Challenger blew up (January, 1986), and I was back riding in time for Sportsman's about four weeks later.
"That time I broke the bone completely," said Meier, "and this time it's only a hairline fracture, so I expect I'll be back well before Arlington is over for the year.
"It really doesn't cause me much pain," said Meier. "The doctor told me I don't need to use crutches unless I'm going to be standing on that leg a real long time. Really, to me right now it just feels more like a charley horse."
Meier was being loaded in the gate astride a 2-year-old filly first time starter named Kissit when the injury occurred. Kissit, a daughter of Kissin Kris owned by 1st Kiss LLC and trained by Dee Poulos, flipped over backward leaving Meier hanging against the tailgate.
The Nebraska-born jockey remains 11th in the current Arlington standings with 19 wins from 175 mounts with purse earnings of $411,584.
Grade/Group I winner Sabiango, who contested the pace in last summer's Grade I Arlington Million before weakening to 11th in the stretch run, has been retired from racing and will stand at Allevamento il Mulino Stud in Milan, Italy.
Bred in Germany by Stiftung Gestut Fahrhof, who owned and bred Silvano, winner of the 2001 Arlington Million, Sabiango was leased for racing purposes to Monty Roberts -- the author known publicly as "the man who listens to horses" -- during his United States campaign.
Sabiango won a pair of Group I races in Germany before taking last year' Grade I Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap at Hollywood Park. He also captured the Grade III Kentucky Cup Turf Handicap at Kentucky Downs.
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