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Arlington Park Stakes Advance: The Grade I Secretariat Stakes

Contact: David Zenner


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (August 9, 2006) – Lael Stables’ Showing Up, winner of the $1 million Colonial Turf Cup in his last start on June 24, has been installed as the 7-5 morning line favorite in Saturday’s Grade I, $400,000 Secretariat Stakes at Arlington Park.

The mile and a quarter turf test for 3-year-olds of international caliber is one of three Grade I stakes races on the card that comprises Arlington’s International Festival of Racing that includes the $1 million Arlington Million for older turf stars and its sister race, the $750,000 Beverly D., for grass distaffers.

The Secretariat Stakes is the third leg of Arlington’s Mid-America Triple which began with the Grade III, $150,000 Arlington Classic on July 1 won by Kingship, and continued with the Grade II, $250,000 American Derby on July 22 that was captured by Union Avenue.

A son of Strategic Mission, Showing Up has won four of five lifetime starts, with his only loss coming in the Grade I Kentucky Derby, which was won by Barbaro, who is also owned by Roy and Gretchen Jackson’s Lael Stables. In addition to his win in the Colonial Turf Cup – Showing Up’s only turf effort to date – the Barclay Tagg trainee registered a victory in the Grade II Lexington Stakes at Keeneland. Showing Up will be piloted from the rail by his regular rider Cornelio Velasquez.

Showing Up will only have five challengers in the Secretariat field, but he will face a stiff test from the Bill Mott-trained Go Between. The son of Point Given, owned by “Chicken Soup for the Soul” series creator Peter Vegso, finished third behind Showing Up in the Colonial Turf Cup, beaten four lengths. But Go Between followed that effort up with a comfortable 1 ¾-length win in the Grade II, $1 million Virginia Derby, also run at Colonial Downs, on July 15. Go Between has never been off the board in eight lifetime turf starts, with three of those races resulting in victory. Go Between, to be ridden from post three by Garrett Gomez, is the second choice in the morning line at 5-2.

Famed Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien will be represented in the Secretariat by Ivan Denisovich, owned by Magnier, Tabor, et al. By Danehill out of Hollywood Wildcat, Ivan Denisovich is a half-brother to 2000 Breeders’ Cup Mile winner War Chant. He was one of the most fancied 2-year-olds in Europe last year, but so far this year, Ivan Denisovich has been blanked in four tries. The Secretariat will represent Ivan Denisovich’s second trip to the United States—the first resulted in a 12th place finish in last year’s $1.5 million Bessemer Trust Breeders’ Cup Juvenile over the dirt at Belmont Park. He drew post position five.

Another foreign invader is Primary who won the listed Gran Premio d’Italia last time out on June 17, after earlier registering three turf victories in Great Britain. The William J. Haggas trainee will be depart from post four under hot Arlington jockey Robby Albarado.

Completing the field are Gary Tanaka’s Proudinsky who was fifth in Go Between’s Virginia Derby, and La Bahia Stud, Inc.’s Niagara Causeway (post six) who, prior to finishing ninth over soft ground in the American Derby, was second in the Grade III Cinema Breeders’ Cup Handicap on firm turf at Hollywood Park. Edgar Prado rides Proudinsky from post two for trainer Bobby Frankel. Trainer Ron Sticka has given leading local rider Chris Emigh the assignment aboard Niagara Causeway.

Arlington Park – the Chicago area’s premier Thoroughbred racetrack located in Arlington Heights, Ill. – will run a 95-day meet in 2006 from Friday, May 5 through Tuesday, Sept. 12. Arlington Park, whose parent company is Churchill Downs Incorporated (Nasdaq: CHDN), also operates eight off-track, simulcast-wagering facilities: Trackside Arlington Park (Arlington Heights), Trackside Quad City Downs (East Moline), Trackside Chicago, Trackside McHenry, Trackside Rockford, Trackside South Beloit, Trackside Waukegan and Lucky’s featuring Trackside OTB in South Elgin. Information on Arlington Park can be found online at

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