NTRA THOROUGHBRED NOTEBOOK
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|News and notes from around the Thoroughbred racing world, compiled
by NTRA Communications, (212) 907-9280.
THREE KEY RACES, NATIONAL PICK THREE BET HIGHLIGHT SATURDAY CBS TELECAST
The "NTRA Summer Racing Tour On CBS," presented by Long John Silver's, visits Belmont Park, Monmouth Park and Arlington Park for live racing this Saturday from 5:00-6:00 p.m. (ET). On tap are races in the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships Distaff and Mile Divisions. Also scheduled is taped coverage of last week's Royal Meet at Ascot in England, which featured many of Europe's top runners competing in the Classic, Distaff, Turf, Sprint and Mile Divisions on the International Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships.
Shaping up as perhaps the most intriguing race on Saturday's show is the Grade II, $300,000 Molly Pitcher Breeders' Cup Handicap (Distaff Division) from Monmouth. Expected to square off in the 1 1/8 miles race for Fillies & Mares ages 3-and-up are Spain, the all-time leading money winner among American fillies and mares, and Summer Colony. The Wayne Lukas-trained Spain, in foal to noted sire Storm Cat, is coming off back-to-back stakes wins at Churchill Downs, while Summer Colony has won seven of her last eight races, including three straight stakes. Looking for the upset will be the Shug McGaughey-trained Atelier. McGaughey has won the Molly Pitcher four times.
A field of five 3-year-old fillies was entered today for the Grade I, $250,000 Mother Goose Stakes (Distaff Division), the 1 1/8 miles test that serves as the second jewel in the New York Triple Tiara for fillies. The top contenders are Chamrousse, winner of the May 17 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico; the Carl Nafzger-trained Belterra; and the Allen Jerkens-trained Dust Me Off.
Arlington's famed turf course will be the staging ground for the Grade II, $175,000 Arlington Classic (Mile Division). At 1 1/16 miles, the race for three-year-olds is the first leg of the Mid-America Triple, which concludes with the American Derby and the Secretariat Stakes. The Tom Amoss-trained Jeremiah Jack, off a win last month at Churchill Downs, could be the betting favorite among the field of nine entered today for Saturday's Classic.
The Ascot recap will present six of the Royal Meet's top races, including the King's Stand Stakes (Sprint Division), the St. James Palace Stakes (Mile Division), the Queen Anne Stakes (Mile Division), the Prince of Wales Stakes (Classic/Turf Divisions), the Coronation Stakes (Distaff Division) and the King Edward VII Stakes (Classic/Turf Divisions).
In conjunction with Saturday's telecast, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) will once again offer a national pick three wager, the NTRA Summer Pick Three, that will coincide with each of the three live races shown on the program. To win, bettors must pick the winners of each of the three races.
Hosting the "NTRA Summer Racing Tour on CBS" is Dave Johnson, joined by analysts Randy Moss and Caton Bredar and commentators Lesley Visser and Gary Seibel.
SEABISCUIT, HORSERACING TALK PACK THE HOUSE IN TUCSON
The widespread interest in the runaway bestseller "Seabiscuit," and Thoroughbred racing in general, is showing no signs of waning, especially in the Tucson area.
On Tuesday evening, four members of the Thoroughbred industry were guest panelists at a Tucson library for a group discussion entitled, "Here Comes The Biscuit." Featured guests were: Wendy Davis of the University of Arizona Race Track Industry Program, Dr. Jack Goodman, a prominent veterinarian and member of The Jockey Club; Joe Harper, president and general manager of Del Mar Thoroughbred Club; and Patty Shirley, who trains horses for Goodman.
The night lived up to expectations, with one exception: When the crowd reached 150 people, the library staff had to start turning folks away.
"We were all amazed by the turnout," said Davis. Much to the delight of the crowd, Harper brought some still photos and film of Seabiscuit from Del Mar. But the gallant horse of the late 1930s and early 1940s wasn't all the crowd was interested in.
"I was really impressed by the fact that these folks spent a good deal of the two hours asking general questions about horse racing as well as the book," said Harper. "It seems like there is definitely a renewed interest in our sport."
WORLD THOROUGHBRED RANKINGS
The following are this week's World Thoroughbred Rankings for the top 10 horses in each racing division for the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, to be held October 26 at Arlington Park in Arlington Heights, Ill. The World Thoroughbred Rankings are established by an international panel of racing secretaries and handicappers. The rankings will be part of the criteria used to determine horses' qualifications to participate in the World Thoroughbred Championships. The rankings currently reflect six of the eight Breeders' Cup divisions: Distaff, Filly & Mare Turf, Mile, Sprint, Turf and Classic. The Juvenile and Juvenile Fillies divisional rankings will commence in late summer.
JOHN DEERE TURF DIVISION
Rank Name Country Based In Rating
FILLY & MARE TURF DIVISION
*(T) next to a ranking indicates a tie.
June 29 NTRA Summer Racing Tour; Molly Pitcher Breeders' Cup Handicap (Monmouth Park), Mother Goose Stakes (Belmont Park) and Arlington Classic (Arlington Park); 5:00-6:00 p.m.; CBS
June 29 NTRA 2Day at the Races; Beverly Hills Handicap (Hollywood Park) and Texas Stallion Stakes (Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie); 11:00-11:30 p.m., ESPN2
June 30 Wire to Wire, 5:00-5:30 a.m., ESPN
July 3 Wire to Wire, 2:00-2:30 p.m., ESPN2
July 6 Wire to Wire, 5:30-6:00 a.m., ESPN
July 6 NTRA Summer Racing Tour; United Nations Handicap (Monmouth Park), Suburban Handicap (Belmont Park) and Stars & Stripes Breeders' Cup Handicap (Arlington Park); 5:00-6:00 p.m.; CBS
July 7 NTRA 2Day at the Races; Dwyer Stakes (Belmont Park), Bashford Manor Stakes (Churchill Downs) and Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Breeders' Cup (Prairie Meadows); 4:30-5:00 p.m., ESPN2
July 10 Wire to Wire, 1:00-1:30 p.m., ESPN2
June 27, 1860: The Queen's Plate, the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America, was first run. Don Juan was the winner, after winning two of the three heats that comprised the event.
June 27, 1932: Calumet Farm recorded its first victory in a Thoroughbred race with two-year-old Warren Jr., who won by a nose at Arlington Park to earn $850.
June 27, 1986: Jockey Kent Desormeaux rode in his first race ever, finishing third aboard a $2,500 claimer named Ducknest Coal Mine, at odds of 35-1, in the second race at Evangeline Downs.
June 28, 1977: Steve Cauthen, on his first day as a journeyman jockey, won with his first three mounts at Belmont Park.
June 28, 1989: Arlington International Racecourse opened in Arlington Heights, Ill. It had been rebuilt after a fire destroyed the old facility, July 31, 1985.
June 29, 1968: Jockey Eddie Delahoussaye won his first race, at Evangeline Downs, aboard Brown Shill.
June 29, 1968: Gamely, Princessnesian and Desert Law -- all owned by William Haggin Perry and trained by Jim Maloney -- finished 1, 1A and 1B, respectively, in the Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park.
June 29, 1969: Jockey Ray Sibille won his first career race, at Evangeline Downs.
June 29, 1983: Jockey Angel Cordero Jr. won his 5,000th career race, aboard Another Rodger, in the ninth race at Belmont Park. He was the fourth rider in history, behind John Longden, Bill Shoemaker and Laffit Pincay Jr., to hit that mark.
June 30, 1973: Three weeks after he won the Triple Crown, Secretariat scored another victory, a nine-length win in the Arlington Invitational Stakes at Arlington Park, where he was sent off at the shortest odds in his career, 1-20. With no place or show wagering on the four-horse race, which was run with a three-horse field against Secretariat, the track had a minus win pool of $17,941. More than 40,000 spectators turned out for the event.
June 30, 1978: Spectacular Bid won his first race, at Pimlico, by 3¼ lengths.
June 30, 1990: Retired jockey Bill Shoemaker won his first race as a trainer, sending two-year-old filly Tempest Cloud to her maiden victory at Hollywood Park.
June 30, 1991: One year after his first victory as a trainer, Bill Shoemaker recorded his first Grade I win, with Alcando in the Beverly Hills Handicap at Hollywood Park.
July 1, 1966: Jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. won with his first mount in the United States, at Arlington Park, aboard two-year-old filly Teacher's Art, owned and bred by Fred W. Hooper.
July 1, 1998: Hall of Fame jockey Sandy Hawley retired from race riding after competing in the Dominion Day Handicap at Woodbine Racecourse.
July 1, 2000: Jockey Mark Guidry became the 36th jockey in history to win 4,000 races when he rode Manitowish to victory in the fifth race at Arlington International Racecourse.
July 1, 2001, Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel won two Grade I races on opposite coasts, on different surfaces, both via disqualification. First, Senure was elevated to the top spot in the United Nations Handicap, a turf race at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J., following the disqualification of With Anticipation for a bumping incident in midstretch. Then, just 30 minutes later and on the same CBS telecast, Aptitude was placed first after Futural was disqualified for a similar infraction in the Hollywood Gold Cup, a top dirt race at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, Calif.
July 2, 1989: Jockey Steve Cauthen became the first rider in history to sweep the world's four major derbies after winning the Irish Derby with Old Vic. He had previously won the Kentucky Derby with Affirmed (1978), the Epsom Derby with Slip Anchor (1985) and Reference Point (1987) and the French Derby with Old Vic (1989).
July 3, 1937: The Del Mar Turf Club, with crooner Bing Crosby as president and actor Pat O'Brien as one of the club officers, opened for racing.
July 3, 1977: Seattle Slew's nine-race winning streak came to an end in the Swaps Stakes at Hollywood Park, when he finished fourth, beaten 16 lengths by J.O. Tobin.
July 3, 1982: D. Wayne Lukas-trained Landaluce, ridden by Laffit Pincay Jr., won the first of her five consecutive victories at Hollywood Park. The daughter of Seattle Slew, owned by Barry Beal and Lloyd French, died of a viral infection in November of that year, but was posthumously voted champion two-year-old filly of 1982.
July 4, 1954: Two-year-old Ribot won his first race, the Premio Tramuschio. He concluded his career in 1956, with 16 wins in as many starts.
July 4, 1972: Two-year-old Secretariat, ridden by Paul Feliciano, ran fourth to winner Herbull in his racing debut, blocked badly throughout the race, at Aqueduct. It was the poorest placing of Secretariat's career.
July 4, 1976: Charlie Whittingham swept the top three spots in the American Handicap at Hollywood Park with his trainees King Pellinore, Riot in Paris and Caucasus. On July 26, he repeated the feat in the Sunset Handicap, with Caucasus first, King Pellinore second and Riot in Paris third.
July 4, 1978: Trainer D. Wayne Lukas won his first $100,000 stakes race-over the turf-taking the American Handicap with Effervescing, ridden by Laffit Pincay Jr., at Hollywood Park.
July 4, 1998: Elusive Quality ran the fastest mile in history in the Poker Handicap at Belmont Park. The five-year-old horse was timed in 1:31 3/5 over a firm turf course.
July 4, 2000: Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze scored his 7,000 career victory aboard This Is the Moment at the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton, Calif. Baze became the sixth jockey to join the 7,000-win club.
July 5, 1991: Jockey Ray Sibille won his 3,000th career race, aboard Sporting Surf at Pleasanton.
July 6, 1975: Locust Hill Farm's undefeated filly Ruffian engaged Kentucky Derby winner Foolish Pleasure in a match race at Belmont Park. Racing on the lead, Ruffian sustained a severe leg injury and was pulled up by jockey Jacinto Vasquez. The filly was euthanized the following day when efforts to save her proved futile.
July 6, 1977: In the second of their 10 meetings, Alydar defeated Affirmed to win the Great American Stakes at Belmont Park. This was the first of Alydar's three victories over Affirmed.
July 7, 1934: Mary Hirsch became the first female to be licensed as a Thoroughbred trainer, in Illinois. Hirsch subsequently was licensed in Michigan that year and two years later, on April 9, she was licensed by The Jockey Club to train in New York.
July 8, 2000: General Express set a world record when he went five furlongs on the turf in :54.60 in the Decathlon Stakes at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J. General Express eclipsed the mark of :54.97 set by Klassy Briefcase in a Monmouth allowance race on June 8, 1991.
July 10, 1982: Landaluce, a two-year-old daughter of Seattle Slew, won the Hollywood Lassie Stakes by 21 lengths under the guidance of Laffit Pincay Jr. She ran the six furlong race in 1:08, just 3/5 of a second off the track record at Hollywood Park.
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