UPI Horse Racing Roundup

By Robert Kieckhefer, UPI Racing Writer
UPI Horse Racing Roundup
Just Be Kind (blue silks) wins Ontario Debutante for 2-year-old fillies at Woodbine. Michael Burns/Woodbine

A massive weekend of top-shelf Thoroughbred racing saw upsets in two St Legers, final preparations for the Arc weekend in France and the potential start of something big in Korea.

A big win by Da Big Hoss sets up a big showdown in November's Breeders' Cup Turf.


And Irish trainer Aidan O'Brien was having a terrible weekend -- until sons Joseph and Donnacha both scored their first Group 1 win. In the same race. With the same horse. Defeating four of their dad's runners.

Step right up and read all about it.


Da Big Hoss took command in the long stretch run of Saturday's $600,000 Grade III Calumet Farm Kentucky Turf Cup, circling the early leaders and drawing off to win by 1 1/4 lengths. It was the second straight win in this event and fourth consecutive victory overall for the 5-year-old son of Lemon Drop Kid.


Bullards Alley and Rum Tum Tugger -- a pair of long shots -- made the early pace in the 1 1/2-miles event and held on for second and third. Greengrassofyoming, who took a lot of late money, made a bid in the stretch run but flattened out and finished fourth.

Da Big Hoss, with Florent Geroux in the irons, finished in 2:35.08 over turf made yielding by a mid-program thunderstorm.

Trainer Mike Maker said the Breeders' Cup Turf is on the agenda for Da Big Hoss. In last year's Turf at Keeneland, Da Big Hoss got a terrible start for jockey Jose Ortiz, fell some 30 lengths off the pace and still rallied to finish sixth, beaten just over 6 lengths.

"I've been riding him all year long and got some big wins with him and he's just a very unique horse to ride," said Geroux. "You need to ride confident, but you also cannot give him too much to do and make things impossible."

Maker said he probably will train his star up to the November race at Santa Anita, where he is likely to face Flintshire. "All I can say," Maker said thinking of Flintshire, "is he (Da Big Hoss) is the second-best marathon horse in the United States."


Oscar Nominated took a giant leap forward in Sunday's $350,000 Dueling Grounds Derby at Kentucky Downs, tracking the pace patiently until the field straightened into the stretch, then blowing away his rivals, winning by 6 1/4 lengths as Geroux celebrated his fifth win on the card. Path of David was up for second, Cordon finished third and the favorite, Airoforce, got home seventh.

Oscar Nominated, a Kitten's Joy colt, ran 1 5/16 miles on firm turf in 2:11.45. The colt finished fifth in the Grade I Secretariat Stakes at Arlington in his previous start.

"Super. Very impressive," said winning trainer Mike Maker. "He's been facing the best. I thought the competition was a little lighter than he's been up against. Proud of his performance."

Renown took the lead turning for home in Saturday's $100,000 Laurel Turf Cup, opened a daylight lead and survived a late bid by Generous Kitten to win by 1 length over that rival. Whitman's Poetry was 1 1/4 lengths farther back in third. Renown, a 5-year-old, British-bred gelding by Champs Elysees, finished 1 1/2 miles on firm turf in 2:27.22 with Angel Cruz riding.

War Dancer ran by pacesetting Uncle Dave in the stretch drive in Saturday's $100,000 PTHA President's Cup at Parx Racing and went on to win by 3/4 length over that foe. Roman Approval attended the pace, then faded to finish third, 6 lengths farther back. War Dancer, a 6-year-old son of War Front, completed 9 furlongs on firm turf in 1:52.31 with Junior Alvarado riding.


Allied Air Raid came from mid-pack to take a big lead in the lane in Saturday's $75,000 Unbridled Stakes at Louisiana Downs and went on to win by 4 lengths over Coalport. Easy Crossing was third. Allied Air Raid, a 4-year-old Midshipman gelding, finished 1 1/16 miles of firm turf in 1:40.54, just 0.34 second off the course record, with Joe Bravo at the controls.

Filly & Mare Turf

Try Your Luck stalked the pace in Sunday's $200,000 Dueling Grounds Oaks at Kentucky Downs, took over in the stretch and won off by 7 1/2 lengths. The favorite, Taralena, finished second, 1/2 length to the good of Leafy Shade. Try Your Luck, a Lookin at Lucky filly, ran finished 1 5/16 miles on firm going in 2:11.60 with Geroux in the irons.

It was only her second career win but followed a third-place showing in the Grade III Pucker Up Stakes at Arlington. "She's had a couple tough trips," said owner Justin Carroll. "It was just a matter of letting things open up in front of her and let her do her thing. We see more big things to come from her."

Lots o' Lex, outrun in the Grade I Beverly D. in her last start, found new life at Kentucky Downs on Saturday, winning the $150,000 One Dreamer Stakes for fillies and mares by 1 length over No Fault of Mine. Fleet Bertie was third. Lots o' Lex, a 5-year-old Kitalpha mare owned by Lisa Lex, ran 1 mile and 70 yards over yielding turf in 1:43.17 with Channing Hill aboard. It was her first stakes win and second race back from a 10-months layoff.


"We had every confidence in her because she's a great horse and she loves to run," Lex said. "She likes the ground soft. Sorry about the rain but it worked in our favor today."

Onus tracked the pace in Saturday's $150,000 Lady Baltimore Stakes at Laurel Park, came around the leaders and went on to win by 1 1/4 lengths. Robillard led briefly and held second, 1/2 length to the good of Tuttipaesi. Onus, a 4-year-old daughter of Blame, ran 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in a blistering course-record time of 1:39.87 under Forest Boyce. She won the Grade III Commonwealth Oaks over the same course last year but more recently finished off the board in two graded stakes at Saratoga.

"She's wonderful," said owner-breeder Stuart Janney III. "She actually has three course records. I've never had a horse with three course records ... We knew she loved this turf course and she proved it again today."

Artistic License rallied to the lead in the lane in Saturday's $75,000 River Cities Stakes at Louisiana Downs and won off by 1 1/2 lengths over Kinky Vow. C d'Cat was a nose farther back in third. Artistic License, a 5-year-old Heart of the Storm mare, ran 1 1/16 miles on firm going in 1:42.33 with C.J. McMahon riding.


Turf Mile

Watchyourownbobber was far too good for five rivals in Saturday's $400,000 More Than Ready Mile at Kentucky Downs. After watching Songsational make all the early going, the 4-year-old Hard Spun colt was more than ready when called upon by jockey Julien Leparoux, surged to the lead and won off by 4 1/2 lengths. Sensational held second, 5 1/2 lengths to the good of Thatcher Street. Hootennany and Chiltern Street, both trained by Wesley Ward, were scratched.

Watchyourownbobber finished 1 mile on firm going in 1:38.94, landing his third straight victory. The race was delayed by a nasty storm front that turned the sprawling, European-style turf course from firm to yielding in minutes.

Winning trainer Mike Maker said Keeneland's Grade 1 Shadwell Turf Mile on Oct. 8 -- a Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" -- is the next objective. "He's earned his chance," Maker said of Watchyourownbobber. {b: Turf Sprint}

Mississippi Delta shadowed the pace in Saturday's $350,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies' Sprint, surged to a big lead in the lane and coasted home first by 1 3/4 lengths over Rapid Rhythm. Rumble Doll found her best stride late to get up for third. Mississippi Delta, a 4-year-old Giant's Causeway filly, ran 6 1/2 furlongs on yielding turf in 1:18.79 under Florent Geroux.


"She shipped in from Woodbine in great shape," said David Carroll, assistant to winning trainer Mark Casse. " Mark felt like she runs well fresh and she also like the yielding course, which we got today."

Conquest Enforcer kicked into high gear in the final sixteenth of Sunday's $100,000 Allied Forces Stakes for 3-year-olds at Belmont Park, took the lead and went on to win by 1 3/4 lengths over Too Discreet. Front Pocket Money was third. Conquest Enforcer, an Ontario-bred Into Mischief colt, ran 6 furlongs on firm turf in 1:07.76 with Javier Castellano in the irons. He now has four wins from his last five starts and a third in the Grade II Play the King Stakes at Woodbine.

"It set up perfect and Javier rode him perfect," said Randi Melton, assistant to winning trainer Mark Casse. "He sat right there, had tons of horse and showed him the whip down the lane and he just came home like we thought he would."

Mosler worked to the lead a furlong out in Saturday's $100,000 Laurel Turf Dash, found more in the final sixteenth and won by 1 1/2 lengths over the late-running Triple Burner. Grandiflora came from last of 11 to finish third, just a nose farther back. Mosler, a 5-year-old son of War Front, got 6 furlongs on firm turf in 1:08.26 with Edgar Prado at the controls. The victory snapped a seven-race losing skein.


Ten-year-old Ben's Cat faded to finish fifth -- his fourth straight loss -- and owner-trainer King Leatherbury hinted his racing days may be coming to a close.

"It's disappointing for me but, look, he's been a super horse and no horse keeps going, that's all," Leatherbury said. "He's done more than could ever be expected of a horse."

The Parker's Storm Cat gelding has won 32 of 59 starts and earned more than $2.6 million, virtually all on the Maryland-Pennsylvania circuit.


Continuing progress toward the $300,000 Grade I Awesome Again Stakes Oct. 1 at Santa Anita, California Chrome worked 5 furlongs in 1:00 4/5 on Saturday over his home track at Los Alamitos. "He was just galloping," trainer Art Sherman said of the Dubai World Cup, Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner. The Awesome Again is set to be California Chrome's final prep for the $6 million Breeders' Cup Classic.

Texas Chrome dueled down the stretch outside Dalmore in Saturday's $400,000 Grade III Super Derby at Louisiana Downs, maintaining a slim edge and eventually scoring by 1/2 lengths. Whateverybodywants was a close third while the favorite, Ohio Derby winner Mo Tom, was never involved and finished fifth.


Texas Chrome, a Texas-bred Grasshopper colt, ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:49.87 with C.J. McMahon in the irons. It was his first graded stakes win though he was second behind American Freedom in the Grade III Iowa Derby at Prairie Meadows.

Comfort, the odds-on favorite, came from last of five to win Saturday's $100,000 Seattle Slew Stakes by a nose over Touchofstarquality. The early leader, Baccelo, faded to finish third, another 3/4 length back. Comfort, a 4-year-old Indian Charlie colt, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:41.28 with John Velazquez riding for trainer Todd Pletcher.

"He's run well on every track he's run on, is 3-for-3 here too," said Pletcher assistant Byron Hughes. "The Jockey Club Gold Cup would seem to be very high on the radar. We'll see how he comes back and go from there."

The Grade I Gold Cup highlights a powerhouse stakes card on Oct. 8 at Belmont Park.

Sorryaboutnothing had nothing to be sorry for after posting a mild upset win in Saturday's $150,000 (Canadian) Grade III British Columbia Derby at Hastings Racecourse. The Florida-bred Repent gelding led virtually all the way under Antonio Reyes and finished 9 furlongs on a fast track in 1:50.45. Crazy Prophet was 2 1/2 lengths back in second and Stanz In Command was another 2 1/2 lengths in arrears in third.


The favorite, Opportunistic, was another 1 length behind in fourth. Sorryaboutnothing started his career in Southern California, detoured to Keeneland and Belmont Park in the spring and wound up in Canada via Del Mar. The win was only his second from 11 career starts.


Victress rallied from last of seven to land Saturday's $100,000 (Canadian) British Columbia Oaks at Hastings Racecourse, besting the favorite, Snuggles, by a neck. Chianti was third, 10 1/2 lengths farther up the track. Victress, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Include, ran 9 furlongs on a fast track in 1:51.30 under Amadeo Perez.

Dirt Mile

Soi Phet wore down trailblazer Magic Mark in the final yards to win Saturday's $75,000 E.B. Johnson Stakes for California-breds at Los Alamitos. Avanti Bello and Songforjohnmichael completed the order of finish. Soi Phet, an 8-year-old Tizbud gelding, ran 1 mile on a fast track in 1:34.61 with Mike Smith riding. The veteran campaigner has won three of his last four starts.


It was all Wellabled in Saturday's $100,000 Grade III Arlington-Washington Futurity at Arlington Park. The Shackleford colt went right to the lead and drew off in the stretch run, winning by 7 3/4 lengths. Romeo O Romeo was second, a head in front of Star Empire.


Wellabled, the favorite, ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather course in 1:24.70. He has won both his starts and Arlington, sandwiched around a second-place showing in the Skidmore Stakes at Saratoga last month.

"The sky's the limit for this horse," said winning trainer Larry Rivelli. "I'm not so sure about other surfaces. I took him to Saratoga and worked him on the dirt a couple of times and he didn't seem to like it. That's why I chose to run him on the turf. His breeding suggests he'll run long."

Signature Spring rallied wide into the stretch in Sunday's $125,000 (Canadian) Colin Stakes at Woodbine, edged by the leader a furlong out and ran on to win by 1 1/4 lengths over Junket. King and His Court came from far back to land third. Signature Spring, a Signature Red colt, ran 6 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:10.48 with Rafael Hernandez aboard.

Juvenile Turf

Caribou Club put his nose on the wire after a determined drive in Saturday's $75,000 Laurel Futurity, beating Undulated by that margin. The pacesetting favorite, Greatbullsoffire, weakened to finish third. Caribou Club, a City Zip colt, ran 5 1/2 furlongs on firm going in 1:02.59 with Ashley Castrenze in the irons for trainer Tom Proctor.


Royal by Nature stalked the pace in Saturday's $75,000 Sunday Silence Stakes at Louisiana Downs, battled pacesetting Kielbasa into submission in the stretch and held off Hembree for a 1 1/4-length victory. Kielbasa salvaged third. Royal by Nature, an Irish-bred colt by Myboycharlie, ran 1 mile on firm turf in 1:37.39 with Jose Valdivia Jr. in the irons.

Juvenile Fillies

Just Be Kind outfinished the favorite, Let It Ride Mom, to win Saturday's $125,000 (Canadian) Ontario Debutante at Woodbine by a neck. Happy Is Lucky finished third. Just Be Kind, a Kentucky-bred Sky Mesa filly, ran 6 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:10.21 with James McAleney up. Trained by Reade Baker, the filly now is 2-for-2 with both efforts coming at Woodbine.

"She was a little sharper today, which is kind of expected with a filly second-time starter," said McAleney. Baker said the filly will be pointed to the $150,000 Grade III Mazarine Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on Oct. 8.

"I bought her as a yearling," he said. "They said they were getting rid of her because she was too small. So I got lucky. She had a growth spurt."


Diadura got through between rivals on the turn in Saturday's $75,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie, survived some serious bumping and went on to win by 5 1/2 lengths. Benner Island was best of the rest, 3/4 length to the good of R Naja. With Carlos Marquez Jr. in the irons, Diadura ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:25.10. The Florida-bred daughter of Hard Spun is 2-for-2.

"I think the sky's the limit for her," said winning trainer Mike Stidham. "She's very, very talented, as you can see. She's shown that today. She's shown that in the mornings and she shows up in the afternoon, so we're hoping for big things."

Blazin Beauty came running late to get by the odds-on favorite, So Lucky, en route to a 6-lengths victory in Sunday's $75,000 Gottstein Futurity at Emerald Downs. So Lucky held second with Sharkzilla third. Blazin Beauty, a 2-year-old filly by Tale of Ekati, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:45.00 with Isaias Enrique up.

Juvenile Filly Turf

Majestic Gale blew by the early leaders in the stretch run of Saturday's $75,000 Happy Ticket Stakes at Louisiana Downs and got clear, winning by 4 1/2 lengths. Senora Acero was second, 1 1/4 lengths ahead of Big Game Baby. Majestic Gale, a Florida-bred daughter of Majestic Warrior, ran 1 mile on firm turf in 1:36.58 with Joe Bravo in the irons.


Happy Mesa made some plungers happy with a 37-1, off-the-pace victory in Saturday's $75,000 Selima Stakes at Laurel Park. The Sky Mesa filly, with Sheldon Russell at the controls, rallied from last of eight and won by 2 1/4 lengths. Harlands Thunder got by the pacesetter, Consulting, to get show money. Happy Mesa ran 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:02.22.

Over the waves:

The St Legers

Super trainer Aidan O' Brien had a tough go of it in St Legers during the weekend, seeing one hot favorite toss his jockey mid-race and another come up just 1/2 length short of victory.

Harbour Law staged an improbable win in Saturday's Group 1 Doncaster St Leger as the favorite, the O'Brien-trained Idaho, stumbled with a half mile to run, unseating jockey Seamie Heffernan. After that mishap, Harbour Law, under George Baker, still had to contend with frontrunners Housesofparliament and Ventura Storm and needed an all-out final effort in the final yards to get home in front by 3/4 length over Ventura Storm with Housesofparliament third. The 20-1 long shot, the rider and trainer Laura Mongan all scored their first win at the Group 1 level.

"I'm still shocked but that was good," said Epsom-based Mongan. "He was good enough and I am just so glad we brought him here. He proved to everyone that he could do it. George knows the horse and did the right thing on him, so credit to him."


She said she expects better from Harbour Law as a 4-year-old, adding, "I just hope we are lucky enough to hold onto him." Previous best for Harbour Law, a Lawman colt, was a second in the Queen's Vase at Ascot in June. Despite fears of rain and soft going, the course remained good for the final Classic of the British flat racing season and Harbour Law toured 1 mile, 6 1/2 furlongs in a respectable 3:05.08.

Neither Heffernan nor Idaho appeared seriously injured in the fall, though Heffernan was taken to hospital for a checkup and missed riding Found in the Irish Champion Stakes. Idaho was the favorite after finishing second to Harzand in the Group 1 Irish Derby and third behind the same rival in the Group 1 Epsom Derby. He went on from those to win the Group 2 Great Voltigeur Stakes at York in August.

A day later and one country west, O'Brien sent out Order of St George as the prohibitive favorite in the Group 1 Irish St Leger at the Curragh. That Galileo colt, however, was unable to run down the leader, Wicklow Brave, failing by just 1/2 length after 1 3/4 miles on yielding ground. It was another 16 lengths back to Trip to Paris in third and Silwana fourth and last.


Wicklow Brave, a 7-year-old Beat Hollow gelding, posted his first win since May of 2015 -- that coming at Listowl Racecourse, near Tralee. Order of St George won the Group 1 Gold Cup at Royal Ascot in June and the Group 3 St Leger Trial in preparation for this start. Winning trainer Willie Mullins said his sometime hurdler, ridden Sunday by Frankie Dettori, normally has been held up for one late run. "Today we said let's make it and see what happens and Frankie was fantastic as he always is," the trainer said.


Super Jockey turned in a super performance for Hong Kong in Saturday's local Group 1 Keeneland Korea Sprint. With Karis Teetan up, the Sandtrap gelding stayed right on the pace early in the 1,200-meters event, kicked clear in the final 300 meters and won going away. Korean-trained Maceon Bolt was second with Japanese sprinter Grape Brandy third.

The hot favorite, American import Wild Dude, was never a factor and finished ninth.

"The race panned out exactly the way we planned, which doesn't often happen," said winning trainer Tony Millard. "He runs very well fresh. We know that and I was very happy with his preparation coming into this. It was great, I didn't actually expect him to win that well but he's a high-class horse."


Teetan, a native of Mauritius, credited Millard's meticulous preparation for getting Super Jockey ready during what's normally the off-season in Hong Kong. "I must say well done to the trainer. I think he's done the best preparation of a horse I've ever seen. This horse was really well coming into this race. I knew if he could handle this surface that he would be hard to beat," the rider said.

Millard said Super Jockey will return to Hong Kong and he will see about a next race.

Japan took the top two spots in the local Group 1 Keeneland Korea Cup, at 1,800 meters, with Chrysolite defeating Kurino Star O by 6 lengths. Local runner Triple Nine was another 10 lengths back in third. British invader Solar Deity finished 10th. Chrysolite, a 6-year-old son of Gold Allure, came to the race with just four wins from 19 starts in Japan.


Rivet ran down Thunder Snow in the final yards to take Saturday's Group 2 At the Races Champagne Stakes for 2-year-olds at Doncaster by a head. D'bai was 5 lengths farther back in third. Thunder Snow, a Godolphin-owned Helmet colt, appeared to have the 7-furlongs event in the bag until Andrea Atzeni got Rivet into his best gear in the late going.


Rivet, an Irish-bred Fastnet Rock colt, backed up a much easier win in the Convivial maiden stakes at York in his previous outing for hot trainer William Haggis.

Both Haggis and Thunder Snow's trainer, Saeed bin Suroor, indicated their colts have improvement available and should handle more distance. Stay tuned. Haggis said he's not sure what's next for Rivet but noted the "eclectic" nature of the Starship Partnership that owns the colt:

"Des Scott, a 87-year-old South African, is marvelous. He's had horses for 60 years, most in South Africa. There's also a certain L K Piggott (legendary former jockey Lester), who bred Rivet's dam, Starship, and also Messrs. Tabor and Magnier. I'm pleased to say they leave it to us -- which is fantastic."

Awtaad got by Custom Cut in the final furlong to take Saturday's Group 2 Clipper Logistics Boomerang Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths. Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf winner Hit It a Bomb was third, another 1/2 length back, in another blow for O'Brien. Awtaad earlier won the Group 1 Irish 2,000 Guineas and was third in the Group 1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Sheikzayedroad moved to challenge for the lead in the final furlong of Friday's Group 2 Doncaster Cup, battled with the favorite, Quest For More, and prevailed by a short head over that rival. St Michael was a non-threatening third in the 250th running of the race. Sheikzayedroad, a 7-year-old Dubawi gelding, was third in both the Group 1 Gold Cup at Royal Ascot and the Group 2 Goodwood Cup before Friday's effort. Trainer David Simcock said Sheikzayedroad will have one more race this season, either in the Grade I Canadian International at Woodbine or the British Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot.



French Derby winner Almanzor worked past Breeders' Cup winner Found in the end stage of Saturday's Group 1 Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown, prevailing by 3/4 length. Epsom Oaks winner Minding was third in the star-studded field, 2 3/4 lengths farther back. Multinational Group 1 winner Highland Reel finished seventh and the favorite, dual Derby winner Harzand, was eighth in a poor effort.

Almanzor, a Wootton Basset colt out of the Marian's Mon mare Darkova, now has posted four straight wins and seven from nine starts.

All of the top three are destined for even bigger things. Trainer Jean-Claude Rouget said Almanzor could contest the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe or the British Champion Stakes at Ascot, although he did win a guaranteed spot in the Breeders' Cup Turf with Saturday's win via the "Win and You're In" program. Aidan O'Brien said Found has been destined for the Arc for some time and will continue that quest. O'Brien said he was "delighted" with Minding's first effort against males but did not specify her next race.

Alice Springs powered down the outside of the stretch in Saturday's Group 1 Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes at Leopardstown and ran on to win by 3 1/4 lengths over Persuasive. The outcome reversed a disappointing eighth-place showing in the Group 1 Prix Rothschild in the previous start for the 3-year-old Galileo filly. It also was a measure of success for Coolmore and O'Brien, whose Saturday started with the St Leger disaster at Doncaster. The victory earned Alice Springs a spot in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.


Zhukova got first run past the early leaders in Saturday's Group 3 Enterprise Stakes at Leopardstown and held off Epsom Derby runner-up U S Army Ranger to win by 1/2 length in yet another tough beat for the Coolmore-O'Brien combine. Bondi Beach, whose only bad outing came in last year's Melbourne Cup, finished third.

Ardhoomey, a 4-year-old gelding by Dark Angel, earned a spot in the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint with an upset, 1/2-length win over Washington DC in Sunday's Group 2 Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes at the Curragh. Ardhoomey caught Washington DC in the final yards over yielding ground as Coolmore and O'Brien again settled for second.

Things turned around dramatically in the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes for 2-year-old fillies as O'Brien-trained youngsters landed the first three spots. But it wasn't Aidan O'Brien involved with the winner, Intricately. Rather, his son and former jockey Joseph Patrick O'Brien saddled the filly and younger son Donnacha O'Brien, 18, was in the irons. It was the first Group 1 win for each.

The elder of the clan sent out Hydrangea and Rhodendendron to finish second and third; favorite Promise To Be True, fifth; and Brave Anna, sixth, but beaten less than 5 lengths. This race also was a Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In." Like a proud papa, Aidan O'Brien said, "To be honest, when both fillies were battling it out towards the line, I was only hoping (Hydrangea) wouldn't put her head in front because those Group 1s are just so hard to win."


And a race after that, Aidan O'Brien saddled Churchill to an easy, 4-lengths victory in the Group 1 Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes for 2-year-olds, boosting his stock for next year's Guineas. Ryan Moore got the Galileo colt home with a late run, earning his fourth straight win. While he is entered in the major fall events for juveniles, O'Brien said Churchill might just be put away to await the 2017 season.

Landfall landed Saturday's Group 3 Willis Champions Juvenile at Leopardstown -- a "Win and You're In" for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf -- with a late run that saw him 2 1/4 lengths clear of Firey Speech. The O'Brien entry, Douglas Macarthur, led much of the way but could only salvage third. Landfall, a French-bred gelding by Myboycharlie, is 2-for-2 after the score.


Vadamos was sent to the lead inside with something less than 3 furlongs left in Sunday's Group 1 Quatar Prix Moulin de Longchamps at Chantilly, spurted to a big lead and cruised home first by 1 1/4 lengths over long shot Spectre. The favorite, Zelzal, made a tardy late run to finish third, 1 1/4 lengths farther back. Vadamos, a 5-year-old by Monsun, notched his first Group 1 win for trainer Andre Fabre.


Japan's latest hopeful for the upcoming Prix de l'Arc d'Triomphe, Makahiki, eked out a narrow win over a quartet of rivals in Sunday's Group 2 Qatar Prix Niel for 3-year-olds at Chantilly. With Christophe-Patrice Lemaire in the irons, the Deep Impact colt sat off the pace, advanced to challenge in the final 100 meters and won by a neck over Midterm and another short head over Doha Dream. The colt had two wins and a second in Japan, winning the Japanese Derby before shipping to France. Japan has endured a long string of disappointments in the Arc and trainer Yasuo Tomomichi said Makahiki needed a win in the Prix Niel to validate his chances for the Arc.

Left Hand was up in the final 50 yards to edge pacesetting Endless Time in the Group 2 Qatar Prix Vermeille for fillies and mares. The Juliet Rose was third. Left Hand, a 3-year-old Dubawi filly, was second in the Group 1 Prix de Diane Longines earlier in the year over the same Chantilly turf. Maxime Guyon had the winning ride.

Silverwave got past pacesetting Ito in the stretch run in Sunday's Group 2 Prix Foy and rolled home first, 1 length in front. Ito held second while Eliptique and One Foot in Heaven completed the order of finish. Silverwave, a 4-year-old colt by Silver Frost, won for the second straight time, backing up his July 3 victory in the Group 1 Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud.



Trainer Darren Weir, as expected, landed Saturday's Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington. But it was his relative outsider, Palentino, and not the hot favorite, Black Heart Bart, first across the line in the 1 mile event over good to soft going.

Black Heart Bart had a dream run, taking the lead 300 meters out after racing in fourth. But when Palentino ranged up on his outside at the 100-meters mark, he had no answer and surrendered by nearly a full length.

"I just needed a bit of room and I got it," said winning rider Mark Zahra.

Palentino, a 4-year-old colt by Teofilo, had not won since taking the Group 1 Australian Guineas in March. Black Heart Bart, a 6-year-old gelding by Blackfriars, exited a Group 1 win in the Memsie Stakes at Caulfield Aug. 27.

At Rosehill, Astern stettled closer to the stern than the bow in Saturday's Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes for 3-year-olds, came running late and scored by 2 1/4 lengths over Omei Sword. The Godolphin-owned, Darley-bred colt won for the fifth time in six starts. He is by Medaglia d'Oro out of the Exceed and Excel mare Essaouira, so much is expected.


In other action:

Kentucky Downs

Sunday's card included two qualifying races for Claiming Crown events slated for Dec. 3 at Gulfstream Park and both went to horses based at Arlington Park. Cammack qualified for the Claiming Crown Emerald and Daddy's Boo earned a spot in the Claiming Crown Tiara. "We were thrilled to have these two races," said Ted Nicholson, Kentucky Downs senior vice president and general manager. "They were full fields and very competitive. Both the winners were very impressive and should be tough to beat at Gulfstream."


Stacked Deck set a pressured pace in Sunday's $100,000 (Canadian) Ontario Jockey Club Stakes at Woodbine, then gradually edged away in the stretch run and won by 1 1/2 lengths. Puntrooski was second with Sweet Grass Creek third. Stacked Deck, a 5-year-old First Samurai gelding, ran 6 furlongs on the all-weather course in 1:08.79 with Rafael Hernandez up.

Laurel Park

Southern Girl seized the lead in the lane in Saturday's $75,000 Shine Again Stakes for fillies and mares at Laurel Park and held on by 1 1/4 lengths over Boheme de Lavi. La Madrima finished third. Southern Girl, a 3-year-old Tapit filly, ran 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:24.11 with Trevor McCarthy up.


Finger Lakes

Pat On the Back won the stretch battle over the favorite, Macho Miah, in Saturday's $120,000 Aspirant Stakes for New York-bred 2-year-old colts and geldings, putting a nose in front at the wire. Ethan Hunt was 1 length back in third. Pat On the Back, a Congrats colt, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:11.43 with Dylan Davis aboard.

Ribbonite dominated Saturday's $116,000 Lady Finger Stakes for state-bred 2-year-old fillies, leading early and winning off by 6 3/4 lengths. Very Fashionable and Ransom Drop were second and third. Ribbonite, a Griffinite filly, finished in 1:12.36, also with Davis up.

Belterra Park

Mobil Sky emerged from a downpour to win Saturday's $75,000 Loyalty Stakes for Ohio-bred 2-year-olds by 2 3/4 lengths over Show Sliding Home despite lugging in late. Bubba J finished third. The stewards disallowed a claim of foul for the stretch run, letting the result stand. Mobil Sky, a Mobil gelding, ran 6 furlongs on a track that started as fast in 1:15.11 under Jacob Radosevich. The rain was so heavy that much of the race was invisible to the Equibase chart caller.

Touching Promise stalked the pace in Saturday's $75,000 (Canadian) Delta Colleen Handicap for fillies and mares, got by the leading pair late and won by 1/2 length over Arabella's Muse. Locket rallied from last to get show money. Touching Promise, a 6-year-old Touch Gold mare, ran 9 furlongs on a fast track in 1:51.11 with Amadeo Perez up.


Calgary Caper came four-wide from the back of the field and won Saturday's $75,000 (Canadian) S.W. Randall Plate Handicap by 1 1/2 lengths from Shooting Jacket. Square Dancer was third. Calgary Caper, a 5-year-old gelding by El Corredor, finished 9 furlongs in 1:49.91 with Perez up.

Los Alamitos

Bendable seized the lead in Sunday's $75,000 Beverly J. Lewis Stakes for 3-year-old fillies and the favorite, Enola Gray, could not make up any ground in the lane. At the wire, Bendable was first, 2 1/4 lengths better than Enola Gray, with Everqueen third. Bendable, a Horse Greeley filly, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:08.84. Richard Mandella trains the winner for Claiborne Farm.

Delaware Park

Six Saturday stakes were worth $75,000 each to the state-bred competitiors.

Sunshine Included led all the way to a 4-lengths win over the favorite, Hailey's Flip, in the Small Wonder Stakes for 2-year-old fillies. Our Rombauer, a first-time starter, closed like a veteran to win the First State Dash for 2-year-olds by 1/2 length over Howboutthemcowboys.

Debt Ceiling upset the 6-furlongs New Castle Stakes, winning by 1/2 length over Cinco Charlie, who then was set down to third. Outwithbigdaddy led all the way to win the companion Tax Free Shopping Distaff by 3/4 length over Lake Sebago.


Going 1 1/16 miles on the grass, Old Harbor led all the way to a 4 1/2-lengths score over Tela in the George Rosenberger Memorial.

Ain't Got Time showed the way in the DTHA Governor's Day Stakes and kicked away at the end to win by 7 1/2 lengths from Fabulous Kid.

Latest Headlines


Follow Us