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Arlington Park Barn Notes (9/5/05)

Contact: Graham Ross

In today's notes:


Arlington Million champion Powerscourt, owned by Mrs. John Magnier, suffered a pulled muscle Sept. 3 and has been withdrawn from consideration for the Group I Baileys Irish Championship Stakes this Saturday at Leopardstown, as well as Belmont Park's Grade I Man o' War on the same day.

"Powerscourt's injury is not believed to be too serious," said Adrian Beaumont, speaking over the phone from the International Racing Bureau's offices in Newmarket on Monday, "but obviously removes him from consideration for any races in the immediate future."

The Irish Championship is the sixth leg of the 2005 World Racing Championships, with Arlington Million XXIII Aug. 13 serving as the fourth leg of that series. Powerscourt is currently tied for second with 12 points in this year's series.

Warrsan, who successfully defended his championship in Germany's Group I Grosser Volkswagen Preis von Baden at Iffezheim Racecouse Saturday as the fifth leg of this year's series, is the current leader in the standing with 15 points.

Azamour, currently tied with Powerscourt in second position, is now the strong favorite for the Irish Champion.

Group I Epsom Derby winner Motivator, who was expected to provide strong competition for Azamour in Ireland, is now "highly unlikely" to participate if the ground remains firm at Leopardstown.

Last fall's Grade I John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf hero Better Talk Now, owned by Bushwood Stable and fourth in the Arlington Million three weeks ago, is likely to head the field in New York's Man o' War Stakes.

Better Talk Now breezed five furlongs in 1:04 at the Fair Hill Training Center in Elkton, Maryland on Friday.


Although trainer Wayne Catalano and jockey Shaun Bridgmohan will be runaway winners for Arlington's 2005 trainer and jockey championships respectively, the battle for the runner-up spot in the trainer standings remains extremely contentious, while in the local jockey standings it is the third position that appears wide open.

Through Sunday's races trainer Christine Janks had saddled 29 winners, while Chris Block had 28. Defending trainer champion Frank Kirby and Brian Williamson were tied for fourth position with 26 winners apiece.

In the jockey's race, Chris Emigh, who won the riding title at Hawthorne this spring, appears to have nailed down the second spot at Arlington this summer with 75 winners through Sunday.

Jockey James Graham, 2004's "Rising Star" award winner at Arlington, had moved into third position after riding 64 winners through Sunday, while Jesse Campbell and Eusebio Razo Jr. were tied for the fourth spot with 62.

Closing fast on that group was the veteran Mark Guidry, currently in sixth position with 57 winners after arriving at Arlington following the close of Churchill Downs July 10. Guidry, Arlington's jockey champion in 1992 and again in 2000, is also to be credited with spearheading Arlington's drive to help assist the victims of Hurricane Katrina.


S J Stables LLC's Cloudy's Knight, Nancy Vanier & Charles Nuckols Jr.'s Come On Jazz and Summer Camp Stable's Delafield, the top three finishers respectively in Saturday's $41,500 Rossi Gold Stakes at 12 furlongs on the grass, all came out of the race in good order and were being pointed for future engagements this fall, according to their connections.

"I'm looking next at the Carey for Cloudy's Knight," said trainer Frank Kirby, speaking of Hawthorne's grassy Grade III Robert F. Carey Memorial Handicap at one mile Sept. 24. "Assuming he runs well there, I'll take a look at the (Churchill's 10-furlong Grade III) River City Handicap (Nov. 20). He finished second in that race last year and probably should have won it. That'll be about it for us this year with him. He's strictly a grass horse."

Cloudy's Knight won Arlington's Mac Diarmida Handicap, was second in the Grade III Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf, and fifth in the Grade III Arlington Handicap this summer.

"Come On Jazz came out of Saturday's race good," said trainer Brian Williamson of the Rossi Gold runner-up. "I was pleased with the way he ran. We're thinking about the Carey for him, depending on how tough it comes up."

"Delafield is doing fine," said his trainer Chris Block. "We'll look for wherever there's a race at a mile and a half for him, probably something at Keeneland."

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