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ARLINGTON PARK

Arlington Park Barn Notes (7/23/06)

Contact: Graham Ross
graham.ross@arlingtonpark.com

In today's notes:

CHICAGO’S ‘CHIC’ READY FOR THE BIG BEVERLY D. DANCE

Fillies and mares came from California, Florida and Kentucky to challenge in Saturday’s Grade III Modesty Handicap at Arlington, but it was locally-based Chic Dancer, owned by S. D. Brilie Ltd. Partnership and conditioned by Arlington’s leading stakes trainer, that posed in the winner’s circle following the final local prep for Arlington’s Grade I Beverly D. Stakes Aug. 12.

So what’s next for the 5-year-old mare who won Arlington’s $42,375 Reluctant Guest Stakes May 28 in her previous start?

“Why the Beverly D., of course,” said trainer Christine Janks during training hours Sunday morning. “We’re going to swing for the fences. I told the owners a long time ago I was going to try and win the Beverly D. with her, and I’m a big believer in vision. But you have to see it to do it, and after the way she ran yesterday, she just seems to be getting better and better. I’m really proud of her. It was really a thrill to watch her win that race.

“She came back great and is doing well this morning,” said Janks, “and I’m happy for (owners) Steve and Diana (Holland). They always do right by their horses and they deserve this.

“I’m also happy for Chris,” said Janks, speaking of Arlington’s leading rider Chris Emigh, aboard for Chic Dancer’s win. “This filly has always been a trial to ride – she can do things to make the rider look bad – but Chris has always fit her very well.”

The Beverly D., sister race to the Grade I Arlington Million, and the Grade I Secretariat, final leg of Arlington’s Mid-America Triple, make up Arlington’s one-day International Festival of Racing on the second Saturday in August, and are the only three Grade I races offered in Illinois on an annual basis.

Irish-bred Louve Royale, owned by Joseph Allen and trained by Patrick Biancone, finished second, a half-length behind Chic Dancer, as the Modesty favorite.

“I thought (Louve Royale) ran very well and she came back well,” said the internationally-prominent conditioner Sunday morning. “She unfortunately had some traffic problems but that’s racing. We’re not sure what might be next for her.”

COSMONAUT READY TO ORBIT ILLINOIS AGAIN IN ARLINGTON MILLION

Under a masterfully rated pacesetting performance by Julien Leparoux – the nation’s leading rider in number of wins and one who had walked the entire turf course Saturday morning in advance of his Arlington debut – Flying Zee Stable’s Cosmonaut led throughout and scored by two and a half lengths in Saturday’s Grade III Arlington Handicap: the final major local prep for the Grade I Arlington Million Aug. 12.

“He (Cosmonaut) came out of the race in good order and we will plan to run him back in the Arlington Million,” said trainer Patrick Biancone Sunday morning. “I thought he ran well.”

Cosmonaut, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred by 1999 Belmont Stakes winner Lemon Drop Kid, will attempt to become the first horse in history to win both the Arlington Handicap and the Arlington Million, centerpiece event of Chicago’s Thoroughbred racing season on the second Saturday in August.

Sam-Son Farm’s Sky Classic, winner of the 1992 Arlington Handicap, finished second by a head to Henri Chaloub’s Dear Doctor in the 1992 Arlington Million, and Juddmonte Farms Inc.’s Fanmore, hero of the 1994 Arlington Cap, finished second by three-quarters of a length to Masayuki Nishiyawa’s Paradise Creek in that year’s Million.

More recently, Gary Tanaka’s Falcon Flight took down winning honors in the 2002 Arlington Handicap, but finished fifth, beaten less than a half-length, in a five-horse photo finish in the 2002 Million.

Shannon Ritter and Michael Rogers et al.’s Load a Chronic, second in Saturday’s Arlington Handicap at 29-1, came out of the race in good order, according to Ritter, who also serves as Load a Chronic’s trainer after many years as an assistant to Elliott Walden.

“He came out of the race real good,” said Ritter Sunday morning. “He finished second, but I feel like we won. Right now, I have no thoughts about what might be next for him. We’ll take a look at that after a few days.”

Sidney L. Port Trust’s Artiste Royal, third in Saturday’s Arlington ‘Cap, a length and three-quarters behind Load a Chronic, also came out of the race in good order but without a specified next assignment.

“All are horses came out of their races well,” said Jeff Ford, assistant to trainer Laura de Seroux, who also saddled the Richard Duchossois entry of Royal Copenhagen and Round Heels in the Modesty. The horses will leave on their flight back to California on Thursday.”

AMERICAN DERBY HERO UNION AVENUE RETURNS WELL

WinStar Farm LLC’s Grade II American Derby hero Union Avenue came out of the race well but without definite future plans, according to Keith Allen, assistant to winning Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.

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