BREEDERS' CUP NOTES
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"RACING TO THE BREEDERS' CUP" NEWSLETTER
SEVEN OF EIGHT 2000 BREEDERS' CUP CHAMPIONS REMAIN IN TRAINING
Seven of the eight winners of Breeders' Cup Championship races at Churchill Downs last fall, including Kona Gold, Kalanisi (IRE), Perfect Sting, Macho Uno, Caressing and Spain, have remained in training for the 2001 season, led by Breeders' Cup Classic hero and Horse of the Year TIZNOW.
Official Equibase Past Performances for TIZNOW
In addition to Tiznow's Eclipse honors as Horse of the Year and Champion Three-Year-Old Colt or Gelding, Breeders' Cup Championship race winners Kona Gold, Kalanisi (IRE), Perfect Sting, Macho Uno, Caressing and steeplechaser All Gong (GB) were voted Eclipse Awards in their respective divisions. The three other Eclipse divisional winners-Riboletta (BRZ), Surfside and Lemon Drop Kid-competed in the Championship at Churchill Downs. Distaff winner Spain was the only Breeders' Cup contender not to have captured divisional honors in the Eclipse voting.
Following is an update and review of Breeders' Cup Championship winners of 2000 and contenders for 2001 at Belmont Park on Sat., Oct. 27:
TIZNOW, CAPTAIN STEVE & ALBERT THE GREAT ON TARGET
Michael Cooper and the Cecilia Straub Revocable Trust's Tiznow indicated emphatically that he is prepared to defend his 2000 titles when the four-year-old bay rather easily dispatched his rivals in the Santa Anita Handicap on March 3.
There were some questions to answer in that race after the California-bred son of Cee's Tizzy had been upset when second to WOODEN PHONE in the Strub Stakes on Feb. 3. Trainer Jay Robbins has indicated that the Pimlico Special on May 12 could be the colt's next target.
Official Equibase Past Performances for WOODEN PHONE
Mike Pegram's CAPTAIN STEVE and Tracy Farm's ALBERT THE GREAT finished third and fourth, respectively, behind Tiznow in the Classic last fall and both have come back strong as four-year-olds this year. Their connections also have indicated that the Pimlico Special could be next on their schedules.
Official Equibase Past Performances for CAPTAIN STEVE
Official Equibase Past Performances for ALBERT THE GREAT
Trainer Bob Baffert shipped Captain Steve east from California for his first start of the year and the son of Fly So Free was a 1¼-length winner of the Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 3. Albert the Great, trained by Nick Zito, finished a game second while making his first start since the Breeders' Cup.
Captain Steve made the long trip to Dubai for the World Cup on March 24 and dashed home a three-length winner of the rich 1¼-mile test as the 3-to-2 favorite of American bettors. Captain Steve was ridden by Jerry Bailey.
Zito chose a more conservative spot for Albert the Great's next start after the Donn and the son of Go for Gin sailed to an easy score by nearly six lengths in the Widener Handicap at Hialeah on the same day as the Dubai World Cup. Ridden by regular partner Jorge Chavez, Albert the Great shattered the track record for the 1 1/8-mile fixture timed in 1:45 2/5, just two ticks off the American record.
Susan Magnier and Michael Tabor's gallant Giant's Causeway, beaten only a neck by Tiznow after a torrid stretch duel in the Classic, has been retired to stud.
KALANISI TRAINING FOR SUMMER RETURN IN ENGLAND
H.H. Aga Khan's Irish homebred KALANISI won a thrilling four-horse photo finish in the Breeders' Cup Turf at Churchill Downs and was voted Champion Turf Male for the performance, his only American start. Official Equibase
Past Performances for KALANISI (IRE)
A top-class runner in England's best races last year, the son of Doyoun (IRE) is in training at trainer Michael Stoute's Newmarket yard. Stoute is expected to plan a summer and fall campaign that leads to another trip to the Breeders' Cup in October.
Sam-Son Farm's QUIET RESOLVE and Trillium Stable's gallant gelding JOHN'S CALL, second and third, respectively, in the photo behind Kalanisi at Churchill Downs, also are training for a return to competition this season.
Official Equibase Past Performances for QUIET RESOLVE
Official Equibase Past Performances for JOHN'S CALL
Remarkably, John's Call is being brought back at age 10 after his best year at the races when the son of Lord at War (ARG) earned more than $1 million. Trainer Tommy Voss has him preparing for his 2001 debut at his Atlanta Hall farm near Monkton, Md.
SPAIN WINS LA CANADA; APPLE BLOSSOM NEXT
The Thoroughbred Corp.'s SPAIN posted a stunning upset as a three-year-old in the Breeders' Cup Distaff at Churchill Downs and appears ready to take her place in the ranks of leading older fillies and mares this season.
Official Equibase Past Performances for SPAIN
Trained by D. Wayne Lukas, the daughter of Thunder Gulch was sharp winning the La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita on Feb. 11 and most recently finished second in the Santa Margarita Handicap on March 10. She is being pointed for the Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn Park next Sunday (April 8), a race in which she is expected to face Jack Garey's six-year-old HERITAGE OF GOLD, who finished third in the Distaff last fall. Heritage of Gold won her first outing of 2001, the March 18 Oaklawn Breeders' Cup Stakes at Oaklawn.
Equibase Past Performances for HERITAGE OF GOLD
John Oxley's 1999 Breeders' Cup Distaff winner and 1999 Champion Older Filly or Mare BEAUTIFUL PLEASURE finished a disappointing sixth behind Spain in the 2000 Distaff. Brazilian-bred RIBOLETTA checked in seventh at odds of 2-to-5, but still was voted Champion Older Filly or Mare for 2000. Riboletta has been retired but Beautiful Pleasure is back in training this season in Kentucky with John Ward.
Official Equibase Past Performances for BEAUTIFUL PLEASURE
Official Equibase Past Performances for RIBOLETTA
Overbrook Farm's beautifully bred filly Surfside finished second to Lukas-trained stablemate Spain in the Distaff and was voted Champion Three-Year-Old Filly for a better overall campaign.
The daughter of Seattle Slew and Flanders was expected to be a major factor in the filly and mare ranks this season, but was recently retired and will be bred this spring after two disappointing starts this year at Santa Anita.
PERFECT STING TO MAKE RETURN IN BLACK HELEN
Stronach Stable's PERFECT STING completed a near-perfect Eclipse Award campaign for the title of Champion Turf Female when she captured the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf last fall. Trained by Joe Orseno, the five-year-old daughter of Red Ransom is training strongly at Hialeah for her 2001 debut in the Black Helen Handicap on Saturday, April 14. Official
Equibase Past Performances for PERFECT STING
KONA GOLD BIDDING FOR ANOTHER SPRINT TITLE
Trainer and co-owner Bruce Headley has seven-year-old KONA GOLD solidly on course to bid for another Breeders' Cup Sprint trophy and Eclipse Award this year. Sunday, the son of Java Gold needed to reach down for all his class to capture the Potrero Grande Breeders' Cup Handicap at Santa Anita. Official
Equibase Past Performances for KONA GOLD
Regular jockey Alex Solis had worked hard on Kona Gold throughout the 6 1/2 furlongs as he won by a neck over Marvin Malmuth's Explicit and John Toffan's Hollycombe in a dead-heat for second. The time over the fast track was 1:15 flat.
Kona Gold was winning his sixth consecutive graded stake, to bring his record to 19-11-6-1 with earnings now approaching $2 million. Headley said after the race that the Kentucky-bred gelding would not run again until the Del Mar meet (July 18-Sept. 5) and was likely to have just two more races before the Breeders' Cup.
At this point, Kona Gold's leading rival in the division would appear to be Carolyn Chapman and Theresa McArthur's CALLER ONE, who finished fourth in the Sprint at Churchill Downs.
Official Equibase Past Performances for CALLER ONE
After cutting out blazing early fractions to lead the field past the eighth pole at Churchill Downs, the son of Phone Trick tired late as Kona Gold set a track and stakes record of 1:07 3/5 for the six furlongs.
Trainer James K. Chapman took Caller One to Dubai for the Gulf News Dubai Golden Shaheen on World Cup Day (March 24) and he carried his blazing speed down the six-furlong straight course to win rather easily by 4 ½ lengths.
WAR CHANT RETIRED: MILE DIVISION WIDE OPEN
Marjorie and Irving Cowan's three-year-old War Chant provided one of the thrilling moments of Breeders' Cup Day last fall when he rallied from far back to win the Mile by a neck over Julian Demarco and Richard Disano's 42-to-1 NORTH EAST BOUND.
Official Equibase Past Performances for NORTH EAST BOUND
Only 2½ lengths separated the first eight to finish in a memorable renewal. War Chant has been retired to stud. North East Bound remains in training with Bill Perry, though his first start of 2001, on dirt in the Donn Handicap, resulted in a last-place finish, 43¾ lengths behind winner Captain Steve.
JUVENILE & JUVENILE FILLIES WINNERS TO RETURN LATE
Stronach Stable's MACHO UNO and Carl Pollard's CARESSING received Eclipse Awards in their divisions last year after capturing the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, respectively, at Churchill Downs.
Official Equibase Past Performances for MACHO UNO
Official Equibase Past Performances for CARESSING
Both are expected to return to competition, but not as early as originally planned. Trainer Joe Orseno had Macho Uno at Gulfstream earlier this winter, but was not satisfied with the colt's progress.
After conferring with veterinarians, the decision was made to send him back to owner-breeder Frank Stronach's Adena Springs South farm in Ocala, Fla., to give the son of Holy Bull more time to grow and mature.
Orseno recently reported that Macho Uno is doing well and would rejoin the stable in New York with a probable return to the races at Saratoga along with the stable's 2000 Preakness hero RED BULLET.
Official Equibase Past Performances for RED BULLET
Trainer David Vance had Caressing nearing her season debut at Oaklawn Park last month, but minor setbacks have caused Vance to give her more time as well.
With Macho Uno missing the Triple Crown trail, The Thoroughbred Corp.'s POINT GIVEN inherited the role of early favorite for the Kentucky Derby. Trained by Bob Baffert, the 17-hand son of Thunder Gulch was beaten a nose by Macho Uno in the Breeders' Cup.
Official Equibase Past Performances for POINT GIVEN
On March 17 at Santa Anita, Point Given became a clear favorite for the Derby with a stunning victory in the San Felipe Stakes and will have his final prep for the "Run for the Roses" in the Santa Anita Derby on April 7.
For a current list of Breeders' Cup point leaders, go to www.breederscup.com/points/.
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