NTRA THOROUGHBRED NOTEBOOK
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|News and notes from around the Thoroughbred racing world, compiled
by NTRA Communications, (212) 907-9280.
STORM CAT COLT TOPS KEENELAND SALE
As had been speculated before the July 15-16 Keeneland July Selected Yearling Sale began, the sale topper turned out to be a Storm Cat colt out of a winning Mr. Prospector mare.
Demi O'Byrne, on behalf of John Magnier and Michael Tabor, signed the sales ticket for $3.1 million. O'Byrne announced that the colt would be trained in Ireland by Aidan O'Brien. O'Byrne also bought the highest-priced colt last year.
Tacha, the dam of the highest-priced horse, is a full sister to French One Thousand Guineas (G1) winner Sha Tha, who is the dam of multiple European group winner State Shinto.
The dark bay colt was consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency, which has consigned the July sale topper five times, and three years in a row. It was the fourth time that a Storm Cat colt had topped the July sale, previously occurring in 1996-97 and in 1999.
Prices rebounded during the second and final session Tuesday evening, following the disappointing opening session on Monday. There were seven million-dollar-plus horses sold on Tuesday.
For the session, 46 yearlings were sold for $26,645,000, an average of $579,239. A total of 87 horses were sold during the sale for $42,385,000, an average of $487,184. Last year, a record average of $710,247 was established when 89 horses brought $63,212,000.
ZIP FIRST AIMING FOR MIDDLE LEG OF AQHA TRIPLE CROWN SUNDAY
Zip First, a two-year-old son of First Place Dash, will look to follow up his Ruidoso Futurity win with a victory in Sunday's $635,470 Futurity at Ruidoso Downs in Ruidoso N.M. Zip First will head a field of 10 in Sunday's race, the second leg of Quarter Horse Racing's All-American Triple Crown. Only Special Effort in 1981 has ever completed the three-race sweep. The Triple Crown concludes with the $2 million All American Futurity on Labor Day at Ruidoso Downs.
DELAWARE HANDICAP TO HIGHLIGHT ESPN2 TELECAST THIS SUNDAY
Three top races from the Delaware Handicap Festival of Racing, along with Belmont Park's Grade I Coaching Club American Oaks, will take center stage on this week's "Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships," to be telecast Sunday from 5:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. (ET) on ESPN2.
The show will feature live coverage of Delaware Park's richest race of the season, the $600,000 Delaware Handicap for fillies and mares three-years-old and up going 1¼ miles, and same-day taped coverage of the $250,000 Kent Breeders' Cup Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on the turf for three-year-olds. The Delaware Handicap is part of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships Distaff Division, while the Kent is a Mile Division race. Also on tap is coverage of two Distaff Division races for three-year-old fillies that will be run on Saturday: the $250,000 Delaware Oaks at 1 1/16 miles and the $350,000 CCA Oaks at 1½ miles.
The likely favorite in the Delaware Handicap will be Summer Colony, who had won seven of her last eight before being upset in last month's Molly Pitcher Breeders' Cup Handicap at Monmouth Park. Summer Colony, trained by Mark Hennig, closed at 11-1 in Breeders' Cup Future Bet wagering conducted during the Fourth of July weekend on the Breeders' Cup Distaff. Also entered in the "Del 'Cap" are Two Item Limit, third in last year's Breeders' Cup Distaff, Critical Eye, Starrer, Catch the Ring, Mountain Angel, Pompeii, Quiet Lake, Unrestrained and Your Out.
The morning line favorite among the eight entered in the Kent is the Bill Mott-trained Miesque's Approval, while the Delaware Oaks is topped by West Coast shipper Adoration, winner of the Hollywood Breeders' Cup Oaks on June 15. Like Miesque's Approval, Adoration is also scheduled to take on seven opponents.
To be run for the 86th time, the CCA Oaks serves as the third jewel in the New York Triple Tiara for fillies. The race has been captured over the years by such greats as Ruffian, Shuvee, Davona Dale and Ajina, who won it in 1997 and went on to victory in the Breeders' Cup Distaff that year.
The expected favorite in this year's Coaching Club American Oaks is the Niall O'Callaghan-trained Chamrousse, who won the Grade II Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico in May. Also likely are Dubai Falls (IRE), Jaramar Rain, Jilbab, Linda Eder, Shop Till You Drop, Sister Girl Blues and Tarnished Lady.
Hosting Sunday's telecast will be Jeff Medders, joined by analyst Randy Moss, reporter Jeannine Edwards and feature reporter Eleanor Mondale.
BELMONT TO STAGE RACE SUPPORTING HORSE HEALTH AND SAFETY
The leading source of private funding for research to enhance the safety of racehorses will be honored on July 20 at Belmont Park. The Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation Purse will be run at Belmont on the final Saturday of the current meeting. Grayson-Jockey Club has donated more than $9.5 million to fund 180 research projects at 31 universities in the last two decades.
"The New York Racing Association has been one of the most important contributors to the welfare of the horse," said Grayson-Jockey Club President Edward L. Bowen. "Between NYRA's support of the Belmont Ball and contributions from the Belmont Stakes Festival, literally hundreds of thousand of dollars have been directed to our Foundation to fund research. The only goals of our research are to develop better ways to protect horses from injury and illness and to cope with such problems when they do occur. It is typical of NYRA to step forward to help us -- and the horse -- again."
"The health of the horse is a constant and high priority to the New York Racing Association," said Terry Meyocks, president of the organization that conducts racing at Belmont as well as Aqueduct and Saratoga. "We at NYRA have long supported the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and encourage all of our fans to give whatever they can to further a cause we believe in very strongly. Over the years, veterinary science has learned to cope with many illnesses and injuries that were totally intimidating only a few years ago. Research funded by Grayson-Jockey Club has been instrumental to that kind of improvement, and we are confident the Foundation will be key to future progress. All this takes funding, of course, and supporting the Grayson-Jockey Club Foundation is a very efficient and significant way to help humans help their horses."
July 20 Wire to Wire, 5:30-6:00 a.m., ESPN
July 21 Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships; Delaware Handicap, Kent Breeders' Cup Stakes and Delaware Oaks (Delaware Park), Coaching Club American Oaks (Belmont Park); 5:00-6:00 p.m., ESPN2
July 24 Wire to Wire, 2:00-2:30 p.m., ESPN2
July 27 Wire to Wire, 5:30-6:00 a.m., ESPN
July 27 Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships; Test Stakes and Diana Handicap (Saratoga); 5:00-6:00 p.m., ESPN
July 28 Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships; Go For Wand Handicap (Saratoga); 6:00-7:00 p.m., ESPN2
July 30 Thoroughbred Classics (Haskell Invitational Handicap), 5:30-6:00 p.m., ESPN Classic
July 31 Wire to Wire, 2:00-2:30 p.m., ESPN2
July 18, 1942: Garden State Park officially opened. A crowd of 31,682 welcomed the return of racing to New Jersey after a 49-year absence.
July 18, 1989: The last Northern Dancer foal to be sold at public auction, later named Northern Park, was purchased by Zenya Yoshida for $2.8 million. In 30 starts over four years in France, Northern Park compiled a 4-7-4 record.
July 18, 1993: Jockey Gary Stevens topped $100 million in purse earnings after winning the seventh race at Hollywood Park aboard Don't Presume (GB).
July 19, 2000: Allen Paulson, owner and breeder of Cigar, died in La Jolla, Calif. after a long battle with cancer. He was 78.
July 20, 1951: Six-year-old Citation, the first Thoroughbred to earn $1 million, was retired.
July 20, 1974: Carl Rosen's Chris Evert trounced Miss Musket by 50 lengths in the world's richest match race, a $350,000 winner-take-all contest at Hollywood Park.
July 20, 1988: John Galbreath, founder of Darby Dan Farm, died at age 90. He was the first person to have owned and bred winners of the Kentucky Derby (Chateaugay and Proud Clarion) and the Epsom Derby (Roberto).
July 21, 1989: Jockey Chris McCarron notched his 5,000th winner, riding I Sure Hope So to victory in the fifth race at Hollywood Park.
July 22, 1999: Dale Baird, the winningest trainer in history, recorded his 8,000th victory at Mountaineer Race Track in Chester, W.V., sending out Midsummer Scene to take the 6th race.
July 23, 1947: Early Edition, Hunter's Sun and Brown Jewel, all offspring of the sire Hunter's Moon IV, finished 1-2-3, respectively, in a race at Hollywood Park
July 23, 1985: A bay colt, Seattle Dancer, son of Nijinsky II and the mare My Charmer, sold to Robert Sangster for $13.1 million-the record price for a Thoroughbred. Seattle Dancer, a half brother to 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew, raced five times as a three-year-old to earn less than $150,000 from two wins, one second and one third before he was retired. The previous record for a horse sold at auction was $10.2 million, paid by Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum in 1983 for Snaafi Dancer, who never raced.
July 26, 1962: Jockey Angel Cordero Jr. rode his first winner in the U.S., Counterate, at Aqueduct Racetrack.
July 26, 1973: The New York Racing Association and the Philip Morris Corporation announced the inaugural Marlboro Cup, a race to feature Secretariat and his stablemate, Riva Ridge, that would be run Sept. 15 at Belmont Park.
July 27, 1973: In preparation for the Aug. 4 Whitney Stakes, Secretariat worked a mile at Saratoga Racecourse in 1:34 over a muddy track. His workout time was 4/5 of a second lower than the 55-year-old track record for the distance. He galloped out another eighth of a mile for a final time of 1:47 4/5, which was 2/5 of a second lower than the track record.
July 28, 1951: Citation, then the world's leading money-winning Thoroughbred, was paraded before a crowd of 28,000 at Arlington Park in his last public appearance at a track before being retired to stud.
July 28, 1987: Jockey Angel Cordero Jr. won his 6,000th victory in the Colleen Stakes at Monmouth Park aboard Lost Kitty. He was the fourth rider in racing history to accomplish that feat.
July 29, 1953: Jockey Walter Blum rode his first career winner at Saratoga Racecourse.
July 29, 1972: In preparation for a July 31 race at Saratoga, Secretariat went three furlongs in :35.
July 29, 1973: Jockey Pat Day rode his first career winner, Forblunged, in a $2,000 claiming race at Prescott Downs, Prescott, Ariz. His mount earned $347: the winner's share of the $631 purse.
July 29, 1995: Jockey Russell Baze won his 5,000th career victory, aboard Cyrus Says, in the sixth race at Sonoma County Fair. He was the 15th rider to reach that plateau.
July 30, 1870: Monmouth Park opened with a five day race meet.
July 31, 1972: Secretariat, ridden for the first time by Ron Turcotte, won his second victory in three starts, on opening day at Saratoga Racecourse. The pair were sent off at odds of 2-5.
SATURDAY, JULY 20
SUNDAY, JULY 21
WEDNESDAY, JULY 24
THURSDAY, JULY 25
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