11.18.2017

A Silent Name Exactor in Frost King Stakes

In a battle between two Silent Name juveniles, Be Vewy Vewy Quiet (pictured inside, yellow......

In a battle between two Silent Name juveniles, Be Vewy Vewy Quiet (pictured inside, yellow silks) held off Stronach Stables' Silent Sting to win the $125,000 Frost King Stakes for Ontario-sired two-year-olds on a rainy Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Frost King Stakes

Jockey Rafael Hernandez worked out the winning trip aboard the 9-5 favourite for trainer Robert Tiller, who earned his 11th stakes victory of the season – second-most at the Woodbine meet. A winner of the Clarendon Stakes this summer, Be Vewy Vewy Quiet now accounts for two of those wins.

Breaking well from the outer post nine, Be Vewy Vewy Quiet stalked outside mid-pack with Silent Sting tracking him before those two sprang into action turning for home in the seven-furlong sprint. Inge had led the field through fractions of :23.32 and :46.61 with Beer Pressure (also by Silent Name) pressing the pace and taking over command at the top of the stretch. However, Be Vewy Vewy Quiet struck in the stretch, rallying four-wide outside of Smooth Talk, and then held off the oncoming Silent Sting by a head for the victory in 1:23.28. The Giant Gizmo son Royal Laser, bumped at the start, closed from last to show, finishing just ahead of Beer Pressure.

“Robert and I were talking about it before the race. We liked the post position and that helped us a lot,” said Hernandez, who was paired up with Be Vewy Vewy Quiet for the first time in the gelding’s five career starts. “That was one of the reasons we won the race. The horse set up perfect today. He relaxed good and he made his run down the lane. He showed up today.”

Both Hernandez and Tiller agreed the homebred youngster could go two turns in the future.

“Absolutely...I always thought that he’s a horse that would stretch out and he proved it today going seven-eighths,” said Tiller. “I think the mare throws distance horses so I really think he’ll go long. He’s got heart. He got beat a couple of close races, they were short races and a few excuses, but he’s run hard every time.”

Be Vewy Vewy Quiet now boasts three wins along with a pair of stakes-placings, defeated less than a length in both the Colin and Bull Page, for more than $200,000 in earnings for owners Frank Di Giulio Jr., Anthony D'Onofrio and J. Peri.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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11.16.2017

2018 Kentucky Stud Fees Announced

Adena Springs' nine-horse stallion roster is led by Ghostzapper, who finished 2017 as the eighth......

Adena Springs' nine-horse stallion roster is led by Ghostzapper, who finished 2017 as the eighth general leading sire in North America.

A homebred son of Adena Kentucky stallion Awesome Again, Ghostzapper enjoyed considerable success in 2017 with 15 black-type winners, eight graded winners, and two grade 1 winners, and his progeny earnings exceeded $10.3 million. His 2018 fee will be $85,000, increased from $75,000 last year.

Adena Kentucky first-crop sires Point of Entry and Fort Larned were both represented by their first stakes winners in 2017, with Fort Larned's daughter Blonde Bomber earning a placing in the 14 Hands Winery Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1). 

First-crop yearlings by Mucho Macho Man, a millionaire and grade 1-winning son of Adena stallion Macho Uno, were well received at the sales. Mucho Macho Man ranked among the top first-crop sires at the Keeneland September sale by median and by average. 

The 2018 breeding season may also see the addition of multiple grade 1 winner and Canadian champion Shaman Ghost. The son of Ghostzapper is still in training. His fee will be announced upon retirement.

The full 2018 Adena Kentucky Stallion Roster
Awesome Again - Private
Capo Bastone - $4,000
City Wolf  - $4,000
Fort Larned  - $7,500
Ghostzapper - $85,000
Macho Uno - $15,000
Mucho Macho Man - $10,000
North Light - Private
Point of Entry - $20,000
Shaman Ghost - (possible)

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11.11.2017

A Three Stakes Winner Saturday for Ghostzapper

Ghostly Presence out-sprinted a field of Ontario-bred fillies in the $125,000 Jammed Lovely to......

The Ghostzapper filly Ghostly Presence out-sprinted a field of Ontario-bred fillies in the $125,000 Jammed Lovely to emerge a sophomore stakes winner on Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack. 

Watch the Jammed Lovely Stakes

The progeny of Ghostzapper were just warming up though. Within the hour Runaway Ghost lived up to his name in the Golden Nugget Stakes at Golden Gate Fields while later in the evening in West Virginia, North Atlantic scored a big victory in the A Huevo Stakes. When the dust settled Ghostzapper's 2017 ledger showed 15 blacktype winners, a figure surpassed only by Tapit, War Front and Into Mischief among active North American stallions.

Ghostly Presence won by one and three-quarter lengths in 1:23.98 giving Hall of Fame trainer Roger Attfield his second consecutive victory in the Jammed Lovely Stakes and fifth overall.

Owned by her breeder Chiefswood Stable, the filly out of the Distorted Humor mare Five N Forty was victorious in last year's Princess Elizabeth Stakes. She entered the Jammed Lovely Stakes off a runner-up finishes in the La Lorgnette Stakes and the Carotene Stakes. Ghostly Presence has now bankrolled $312,204.

"I loved her going into this race today," Attfield said. "Her last two races were great races, she just was very unlucky. But she’s a sweetheart, she really is.”

In the Golden Nugget, Runaway Ghost was sent off favored in his stakes debut. He gave the bettors no anxious moments, sprinting out to the lead when the gate opened and rolling down the lane. His final margin of victory: 7 1/2 lengths.

“I was very impressed with his professionalism. I had a lot of horse there,” commented winning rider Aaron Gryder.

The colt races for his breeder Joe Peacock and is trained by Mike Machowsky. He's the second promising juvenile stakes winner for his sire after the unbeaten Dak Attack, winner of the Ellis Park Juvenile in August.

The four-year-old North Atlantic has been knocking on the blacktype door for three seasons and broke through with handy score Saturday night. The Coleswood Farm homebred had placed in three previous blacktype events, including a nose defeat to Charitable Donation in the $350,000 West Virginia Breeders' Classic on October 14. He turned the tables on that rival with a measured one-length victory in the A Huevo.

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11.07.2017

Adena Springs Sells $500,000 American Pharoah Filly at Keenelend November

Hip 82, an Adena Spring-bred chestnut filly from the first crop of Triple Crown winner American......

Hip 82, an Adena Spring-bred chestnut filly from the first crop of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, out of multiple grade 1 winner Life At Ten, sold to Blue Sky Stable for $500,000 at the Keeneland November sale Nov. 7. The partnership was organized by Brian Graves, Mike McMahon, and Jamie Hill.

"We were hoping it was going to be a little bit less, but we thought it was fair," Graves said.

The filly was offered by Adena Springs, who bred her in Ontario, and was sold immediately after her grade 1-winning dam went through the ring for $550,000. Life At Ten was purchased by SF Bloodstock, also from the Adena Springs consignment.

"We intend to re-sell her next year," said Graves. "We just thought she was a beautiful, balanced filly, and maybe one of the best in the sale. American Pharoahs have been selling well. She's out of a grade 1 winner and she's all class, so we'll take a shot."

Of American Pharoah's first crop, Graves added, "The sky's the limit. We just bought something by a Triple Crown winner out of a grade 1 winner. You can't beat that."

Life at Ten was among several 

Other weanlings bred, raised and sold by Adena Springs at Keeneland November include Hip 172, a $130,000 Awesome Again colt out stakes winner and Grade 1-placed Topic. Adena Springs also sold Topic for $525,000 to Spendthrift Farm. The highest-selling mare of the Adena consignment is the Congrats daughter Top Decile, who was secured by Shadai Farm for $950,000.

-from www.bloodhorse.com

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11.04.2017

Third Graded Score for Ghostzapper's Gamble's Ghost

Less than an hour after trainer Josie Carroll and owner Ivan Dalos watched their filly Ami’s Mesa......

Less than an hour after trainer Josie Carroll and owner Ivan Dalos watched their filly Ami’s Mesa finish just a nose shy of a Breeders' Cup victory at Del Mar, Gamble’s Ghost completed an exciting day of racing for the duo back home winning the Maple Leaf Stakes (Grade 3) at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Maple Leaf Stakes

The homebred four-year-old Ghostzapper filly earned her third straight victory and seventh lifetime from 15 starts while her bankroll climbed to $576,883. She is now a graded stakes winner in each of her three seasons on the track with her other victories coming in the Mazarine and Selene Stakes in her two and three-year-old campaigns.

Dalos indicated that he is leaning towards another year of racing for Gamble’s Ghost, as well as Ami’s Mesa, before they join his broodmare band at Tall Oaks Farm. 

Gamble’s Ghost was sent postward as the 6-5 favorite in the $125,000 Maple Leaf, contested over 1-1/4 miles on the main track under Eurico Rosa Da Silva.

While Gamble’s Ghost raced outside near the back of the pack, her barn buddy Involuntary led all the way into the stretch (:25.33, :50.75, 1:15.86, 1:40.82) with Happyness and last year's winner Ice Festival (by Awesome Again) looming to her outside. Ice Festival commenced her bid heading into the stretch, but Gamble’s Ghost swept by in front of the grandstand to win by three-quarters of a length in a final time of 2:04.70. Involuntary followed in third with Happyness finishing fourth and Giovanna Blue completing the order of finish.

“She was very, very relaxed. She’s a super, super class filly," Da Silva said. "I think Rafael [Hernandez aboard Ice Festival] rode a very good race because he was in post position one and he came outside and he ended up being in a very good position in the first turn. I was just sitting behind and waiting for the moment for me to push my horse because she was running very, very relaxed and I can feel any time she is going to break from there.”

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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10.29.2017

Another Juvenile Stakes Winner for Silent Name

Clickity Clack pulled off a 10-1 upset in the 72nd running of the $225,000 Princess Elizabeth......

Clickity Clack pulled off a 10-1 upset in the 72nd running of the $225,000 Princess Elizabeth Stakes defeating favourite Avie’s Mineshaft in a photo finish on Sunday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Princess Elizabeth Stakes

Tony Gattellaro trains and co-owns the promising two-year-old Silent Name filly, who is now two-for-four to start her career.

Jockey Rafael Hernandez worked out a tracking trip aboard Clickity Clack behind race leader Hell N Wild, who was challenged outside by Gizmo’s Destiny and It’snicetobenice through fractions of :25.64, :50.37 and 1:14.76. Down the stretch, Avie’s Mineshaft rallied out wide from the back of the pack while Clickity Clack closed inside along the rail and those two took off in a battle to the wire. They raced by the mile mark in 1:39.73 and hit the line together. The finish was even too close to call for Hernandez.

Bred in Ontario by Woodbine outrider Robert Love and his wife Michelle, the Silent Name-Boama filly was a $20,000 yearling purchase from last year’s Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society Yearling Sale by Gattellaro and longtime friends T. Baker, P. Statchuk, J. Gallagher, D. Carlson & A. Carlson.

"She's a ton of fun,” Gattellaro said of the filly, who was one of his top picks from the sale. “This is what horse racing is all about."

"If I was to pick one word that defines her, it would be ‘smooth.’ She's just been classy from the start. Right from the first day we put the saddle on her here, I turned to one of my grooms and said, 'We have a special horse here' and here we are. I'm thrilled. It's the win of my life. My second stakes win and the biggest one,” said Gattellaro, who also campaigned filly Ellan Vannin to a late-season stakes victory in last year’s Ontario Lassie for his initial stakes win."

Racing inside proved to be key for Clickity Clack, who ultimately prevailed by a head bob in 1:46.07 over 1-1/16 miles on the Woodbine main.

“I tried once to get out, but I had horses outside and I decided to just wait for the hole to open up and that's what happened,” said Hernandez of his winning trip. “The hole opened inside, went through, and she was still running.

"Before I got on the horse in the paddock, Tony told me, 'You know what, Raffy? She's different today. She's on the top and she's going to show you a lot today,’ and that's what she did.'"

- edited from www.woodbineracing.com



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10.28.2017

A Sensational 'Rising Star' for Point of Entry

Bill Lawrence’s Point of Entry colt Analyze It became the first “TDN Rising Star” and seventh......

Bill Lawrence’s Point of Entry colt Analyze It became the first “TDN Rising Star” and seventh winner for his freshman sire with an impressive debut graduation at Belmont Saturday afternoon.

Watch Analyze It's maiden victory

Following splits of 47.44 and 1:11.36, Analyze It covered his final quarter in 22.95 seconds for a final time of 1:34.31, earning an 89 Beyer Speed Figure.

In comparison, five races later on the card, the 2-year-old Therapist improved his record to 3 for 3 with a rallying victory in the $100,000 Awad Stakes. The pacesetting Looking Ready set quicker fractions of 46.90 and 1:10.83 before Therapist rallied to victory in 1:35.41, 1.10 seconds slower than Analyze It over the same Widener turf course.

Trainer Chad Brown was impressed.

“He had trained well, and I expected him to run well, but you’re never expecting a performance like that the first time,” he said.

Along with Brown and the Thoroughbred Daily News, New York Racing Association commentator Andy Serling was dazzled, tweeting after the race: "That performance by Analyze It was off the charts impressive. Wow! Best 2YO turf horse in the country....and it might not be close."

A $130,000 Keeneland September yearling buy, Analyze It was purchased for $190,000 post sale at OBS March after breezing in :10 flat. The winner is the first foal out of Sweet Assay, by the Storm Cat son Consolidator, who hails from the family of MGISW Came Home. He was bred by P. Headley Bell, Nancy Bell & NATO.

Among Point of Entry's other early winners is the Adena Springs-bred Stakes winner Glamanation.

-edited from www.thoroughbreddailynews.com & drf.com

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10.26.2017

Another Sale, Another Six-Figure Mucho Macho Man Yearling

Fasig-Tipton October is the fourth 2017 auction to feature a six-figure Mucho Macho Man yearling......

Fasig-Tipton October is the fourth 2017 auction to feature a six-figure Mucho Macho Man yearling after leading owner Samantha Siegel went to $115,000 to secure a filly by the Breeders' Cup Classic champion.

The attractive chesnut filly was a successful pinhook for Chuck Allen, who bought her at last fall's Keeneland November sale for $25,000. The filly is also the seventh Mucho Macho Man yearling to sell for six figures this year.

Mucho Macho Man yearlings had previously sold for triple digits at Keeneland September ($170,000, $135,000, $110,000, $100,000), Fasig-Tipton New York ($140,000) and Barretts August (the $120,000 colt sale topper).

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10.24.2017

Big Opening Session for Ghostzapper at FT-October

Samantha Siegel's Jay Em Ess Stable paid a session-topping $275,000 to secure a filly by......

Samantha Siegel's Jay Em Ess Stable paid a session-topping $275,000 to secure a filly by Ghostzapper as the four-day Fasig-Tipton October Fall Yearlings Sale kicked off with a solid day of selling on a rainy day in Lexington Monday.

"She's a pretty, well-balanced filly and a New York-bred," Siegel said. "We know Ghostzapper can get a good filly so, as they say, she ticked off all the boxes."

Siegel was forced to miss last month's Keeneland September Yearling Sale, so she was trying to make up for lost time.

"Unfortunately, I had to miss the Keeneland September sale--I was a vet scratch--but I would like to have a few more horses to fill out my group, so I came here," Siegel said after signing the ticket on Hip #96.

The yearling is out of Princesa de Papi, a half-sister to stakes winners Silent Bird and A Brilliant Idea.

Hip 96 was consigned to the October sale by Tommy Eastham's Legacy Bloodstock on behalf of her breeder, Dr. Jon Davis's Milfer Farm. Davis purchased Princesa de Papi, with this foal in utero, for $70,000 at the 2015 Keeneland November sale. "[Milfer Farm] raises a nice horse," Eastham said. "She's a big-walking horse...and was a typical Ghostzapper with a great mind."

The highest-priced colt of the session was a $180,000 son of Ghostzapper purchased by Superfine Farms owner Ron Fein. The dark bay colt, Hip #63, is destined for a return trip through the sales ring next spring, according to Fein, who did his bidding out back while standing alongside pinhooker Ciaran Dunne.

"I liked everything about him. First of all he was a Ghostzapper, second of all he had beautiful movement and good size. Ciaran Dunne liked him, that was important, and he handled this process very well," Fein explained. "He'll probably go to either Miami [Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale] or [OBS] March."

The yearling, bred by champion Songbird's breeder John Antonelli in California, was consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency. Antonelli purchased the colt's dam Piedras Negras for $95,000 as a 4-year-old in foal to Johannesburg at the 2003 Keeneland November sale. That in utero foal became graded stakes winner La Traviata, who is the dam of Group 1 winners Crusade (Mr. Greeley) and Seventh Heaven (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}).

-edited from www.thoroughbreddailynews.com

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10.19.2017

First Winner for Champion Hunters Bay

Hunters Bay, a Champion multiple graded stakes-winner and grade 1-placed son of Ghostzapper, got......

Hunters Bay, a Champion multiple graded stakes-winner and grade 1-placed son of Ghostzapper, got his first winner Oct. 19 when Bay of Cats broke her maiden in a game 5 1/2 furlong race at Delaware Park.

The filly, raced by Derek Brown and trained by Mary Eppler, got her first win in her second start. Though tracking near the back of the six-horse field early, she ran down The Bay Express in deep stretch to win by a neck.

Dr. Tom Bowman's Roland Farm and Adena Springs bred Bay of Cats in Maryland. The filly is the first foal out of the Dance With Ravens daughter Cat Bird, who is a half sister to black-type stakes winner Halo Cat and black-type placed winner Joyce Ann.

Hunters Bay, bred by Frank Stronach's Adena Springs and raced by Stronach, won six races and finished second four times out of 14 starts. In 2012 championship season, he won the Eclipse Stakes (G3) and Dominion Day Stakes (G3) at Woodbine Race Course and finished second to Wise Dan in the Ricoh Woodbine Mile Stakes (G1T). He retired with $611,091 in earnings and now stands at Adena Springs North.

-edited from www.bloodhorse.com

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10.06.2017

Fall Begins with Two New Ghostzapper Stakes Winners

Superstar sire Ghostzapper began the fall racing season with two new blacktype winners during in a......

Superstar sire Ghostzapper began the fall racing season with two new blacktype winners during in a five day span.

At Gulfstream Park on September 30, his five-year-old daughter King's Ghost (pictured) stormed to a three-length victory in the $75,000 Monroe Stakes. Trained by Marty Wolfson for Miller Racing, the improving mare is also the latest blacktype winner bred and sold by Adena Springs. 

Watch the Monroe Stakes

Five days later at Presque Isle Downs, another Ghostzapper daughter, Cavalia,  scored in the $100,000 H. B. P. A. Stakes. She entered the race off a strong third in the Grade 2 Presque Isle Master Stakes in her stakes debut on September 18.

King's Ghost and Cavalia give Ghostzapper 12 blacktype winners in 2017 and they are among his 22 blacktype horses this year. 2017 marks the sixth straight season Ghostzapper has sired double-digit blacktype stakes winners and over 20 total blacktype stakes horses.

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09.30.2017

Explosive First Stakes Winner for Fort Larned

Blonde Bomber scored an impressive victory in the $75,000 Our Dear Peggy Stakes at Gulfstream......

Blonde Bomber scored an impressive victory in the $75,000 Our Dear Peggy Stakes at Gulfstream Park, becoming the first stakes winner for Breeders' Cup Classic champion Fort Larned.

Watch the Our Dear Peggy Stakes

"Nice seeing Blonde Bomber live up to the promise and talent-level many of us thought she had this summer," commented Gulfstream Park on-track host Jason Blewitt. "Nice Fort Larned filly for Arindel Farm."

The attractive gray placed in three of her first four outings, all at sprint distances. She broke through in her fifth start with a sparkling 4 1/2-length Maiden Special victory going six furlongs at Gulfstream on September 2.

Making her stakes debut in the one-mile Our Dear Peggy, Blonde Bomber broke well from post five and attended the early pace through a quarter mile in :24.96 and a half-mile in :48.30. Jockey Emisael Jaramillo gave his filly her cue midway around the far turn and she willingly assumed the lead. The pair coasted down the lane from there, greeting the wire with a 7 1/4-length advantage. 

Blonde Bomber is trained by South Florida veteran Stanley Gold and races in the colors of her breeder, Arindel Farm. She's out of the mare Girl Can Rock, a daughter of the former Adena Springs champion sire El Prado. 

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09.30.2017

'Slew' Awesome Again in G3 Ack Ack Stakes

Live Oak Plantation’s homebred Awesome Slew proved to be one of the nation’s top middle distance......

Live Oak Plantation’s homebred Awesome Slew proved to be one of the nation’s top middle distance runners when he ran down up-and-comer The Player inside the final eighth of a mile to win Saturday’s stirring 25th renewal of the $100,000 Ack Ack (Grade III) at Churchill Downs.

Awesome Slew, ridden by Corey Lanerie and trained by Mark Casse, ran one mile in 1:35.02 to prevail by one length. It was another 9 ¼ lengths back to third-place finisher Pinson. The first prize was $59,520 and hiked Awesome Slew’s bankroll to $952,940 with a record of 16-5-4-3.

Awesome Slew is son of 1998 Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) winner Awesome Again out of the Seeking the Gold mare Slewfoundmoney. He was bred in Florida by his owner Charlotte Weber.

Awesome Slew had been facing a stellar roster of rivals in top seven-furlong and one-mile races this year. Transferred to the care of Casse in February, Awesome Slew defeated multiple Grade I winner A.P. Indian in the seven-furlong Commonwealth (GIII) at Keeneland. He also had strong efforts when second to Limousine Liberal in the Churchill Downs (GII) on Kentucky Derby Day, Sharp Azteca in the Gulfstream Park Handicap (GII), Drefong in Saratoga’s Forego (GI) and Mind Your Biscuits in the Belmont Sprint Championship (GII). Awesome Slew also finished fourth behind Mor Spirit and Sharp Azteca in the one-mile Metropolitan Handicap (GI) at Belmont Park.

Following his performance Saturday, it appears that Awesome Slew will head west for the $1 million Las Vegas Dirt Mile (GI) at Del Mar on Friday, Nov. 3. Three of the last four Ack Ack winners – Pants On Fire (2013), Tapiture (2015) and Tom’s Ready (2016) – used the race as a springboard to the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, as well.

Warrior’s Club and Pinson battled for the early Ack Ack lead and directed the field of nine 3-year-olds and up through early fractions of :23.07 and :46.50 as The Player tracked in third and Awesome Slew raced in sixth. Warrior’s Club began to fade midway around the turn as The Player poked his head in front. Lanerie dropped his hands and asked Awesome Slew for his best run and the 4-year-old quickly began to pick off rivals with a five-wide rally before drawing even with The Player at the eighth-mile pole.

“Turning for home I had a ton of horse under me,” Lanerie said.

The seasoned Awesome Slew’s class was undeniable in deep stretch as he edged clear from The Player, who proved to be a fascinating challenger.

“That horse (Awesome Slew) outran him,” said The Player’s trainer “Buff” Bradley. “He was running – they both were running.”

“The goal for this spot was to give him an easier race,” said Norman Casse, assistant to his father Mark. “He’s been facing some of the best sprinters in the country so he needed to build his confidence back up. He did everything well today and the distance was perfect. There’s still some discussion to be had but right now we’ll point towards the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile.

- edited from www.churchilldowns.com, photo by Coady


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09.20.2017

1st Mucho Macho Man Yearlings in High Demand at Keeneland

A trio yearlings from the first crop by Breeders' Cup Classic champion Mucho Macho Man brought six......

A quartet of yearlings from the first crop by Breeders' Cup Classic champion Mucho Macho Man commanded six-figure bids at the 2017 Keeneland September sale.

Hip #3213 - $170,000
The highest-selling colt of the September 20 session. He hails from the prolific female family of two-time Canadian Horse of the Year Chief Bearhart. Select Sales consigned the tremendous colt, Michael Neatherlin signed the ticket. 

"My client was concerned when he was catalogued in Book 5, but I reassured her, because he's such an outstanding physical," said Carrie Brogden of Select Sales. "He had 10 scopes. He was vetted tons of times... He was the real deal. When he came in the back ring he just owned it and people swarmed him. We were thrilled and really beside ourselves. There was so much interest in him and Ciaran Dunne was the direct underbidder on him and was not too happy that he didn't get him, that's for sure."

Hip #1810 - $135,000
This filly is out of the Stakes-placed Rock Hard Ten mare Raucous Lady. Consigned by Hidden Brook Farm, she was purchased by agent Hal Hatch.

Hip #1821 - $110,000
A filly out of multiple Graded Stakes winner Rite Moment, the dam of multiple Stakes winner Moment is Right. She was purchased by Southcoast Bloodstock Agent out of the Woodford Thoroughbreds consignment.

Hip #727 - $100,000
Famed Darby Dan Farm sold this colt out of the Stakes-placed Pure Prize dam Severn Shore. Jackpot Farm was the winning bidder. 

These stellar yearlings come after a $140,000 Mucho Macho Man colt at the Fasig-Tipton New York-Bred Preferred auction and his $120,000 colt sales topper at Barretts August.

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09.18.2017

$175,000 Macho Uno Colt at Keeneland September

An Adena Springs-bred Macho Uno colt caught the eye of some sharp bidders during Session 7 of the......

Hip #2359, an Adena Springs-bred Macho Uno colt caught the eye of some sharp bidders during Session 7 of the Keeneland September Yearling sale. When the dust settled the attractive grey sold for $175,000.

The colt has every right to be a good one. He's out of the mare Black Lace, by dual Classic winner Afleet Alex, and a half-sister to Macho Uno's five-time Grade 1 winner Private Zone. A little further back in the pedigree are the likes of two-time Canadian Horse of the Year Chief Bearhart. Golf '18 signed the ticket on the colt.

Adena Springs-bred, raised and sold Private Zone at the 2010 Keeneland September sale. 

In addition to Private Zone, Macho Uno is the sire of several other top-class runners including Grade 1 winners Wicked Style, & Macho Again and Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) hero Mucho Macho Man, whose first yearlings have been received at Keeneland September

 

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09.14.2017

$725,000 Ghostzapper Colt at Keeneland September

Hip #997, a colt by Hall of Famer Ghostzapper brought $725,000 on Day 4 of the Keeneland September......

Hip #997, a colt by Hall of Famer Ghostzapper brought $725,000 during day four of the Keeneland September sale.

The handsome bay was purchased by Maverick Racing and China Horse Club from the Gainesway consignment. He's the second foal out of the Street Cry mare Any Why Not, a multiple Grade 1 performer.

"He's just a nice horse," said WinStar Farms's Elliot Walden. "He's a beautiful horse, well raised by Helen Groves...It's a great stallion-type family, so we'll see what happens."

The sale comes two days after Shadwell Estate purchased a Ghostzapper colt for $625,000.

Other Ghostzapper yearlings at Keeneland September have sold for $425,000, $375,000, $325,000, $320,000 and $310,000.

Ghostzapper's current crop of yearlings were bred on a $60,000 stud fee.

Ghostzapper is also the damsire of Hip #1041, the session four co-topper. His graded stakes-placed daughter Beloveda produced the $1 million colt by Scat Daddy. 

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09.12.2017

Ghostzapper Yearlings Popular at Keeneland: $625,000, $425,000, etc.

Hip #321, a colt by Ghostzapper, commanded a final bid of $625,000 during day two of the annual......

Hip #321, a colt by Ghostzapper, commanded a final bid of $625,000 during day two of the annual Keeneland September Yearling sale. Three others Ghostzapper yearlings sold through the first two days of the sale, all for over $300,000.

The $625,000 hip is a full brother to Ghostzapper's Breeders' Cup and Eclipse Champion Judy the Beauty. Shadwell Estate purchased the colt.

"He's a royally bred colt, that fella," consignor Peter O'Callaghan (Woods Edge Farm) said after the sale.

Other prominent owners were keen to buy in on Ghostzapper at North America's most important yearling auction. Rick Porter, who's raced such standouts as Havre de Grace and Songbird in the colors of his Fox Hill Farm, was winning bidder on a $425,000 colt during the sale's first session. On day two, Shortleaf Stable purchased a $375,000 colt and G. Watts Humphrey went to $310,000 to secure a Ghostzapper filly.

Through the first two days of the sale Ghostzapper's average is a stout $433,750 for yearlings bred on a stud fee of $60,000.

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09.10.2017

Silent Sonet is Silent Name's Newest Stakes Winner

Silent Sonet, a troubled third in her last start, rewarded the faith of  her backers here......

The Silent Name filly Silent Sonet, a troubled third in her last start, rewarded the faith of  her backers here Sunday with an emphatic 6 ¼-length victory in the $125,000 La Prevoyante Stakes.

Watch the La Prevoyante Stakes

The La Prevoyante a one-mile turf race for Ontario-sired 3-year-old fillies, attracted a field of eight and Silver Sonet ruled as the 1-2 favorite under new rider Eurico Rosa da Silva.

“I was very confident that my horse was going to run very big,” said Da Silva, who had become acquainted with Silent Sonet when he breezed her for trainer Nick Gonzalez nine days ago.

Listenlindalisten, who had upset Silent Sonet when the two last met in the off-the-turf seven-furlong Passing Mood here Aug. 2, was looking for her third consecutive stakes win and was sent to the front from her inside post.

Da Silva was taking no chances, however, and never let Listenlindalisten and jockey Patrick Husbands shake loose as he and Silent Sonet  tracked intently from second place.

 “I was waiting to see what Patrick was going to do,” said Da Silva. “We ended up in the perfect position.”

Listenlindalisten, the 3-1 second choice, carved out a half in :23.50 while one length in front and a half in :46.34 with a half-length advantage.

Hailey’s Prize and Cindervella raced within striking position heading into the far turn with the rest of the field well back.

Turning into the stretch, Hailey’s Prize was attempting to launch a bid from the outside but Da Silva gave Silver Sonet her head and it was all over but the shouting.

“In the turn, my horse was just galloping,” said Da Silva, who also won Saturday’s Ontario Debutante and is the leading rider in all categories including 22 stakes victories.

“When I asked her, she just broke from there.”

Silent Sonet is homebred who races for owner Ivan Dalos, did not see action at 2 and the La Prevoyante was her third win from five outings.

“She’s a big filly,” said Dalos. “I thought she was too big to be a 2-year-old runner. We just took it easy, knowing she was going to be a nice 3-year-old, and this is what she turned out to be.”

Silent Sonet is the fourth 2017 blacktype winner making him Canada's #1 sire of blacktype winners this year. His also the runaway leading juvenile sire in Canada for the second year in a row.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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09.02.2017

Gamble's Ghost is Ghostzapper's 10th Stakes Winner of 2017

Gamble’s Ghost mounted a late bid to come from last at the three-quarter mark to take the $100,000......

Gamble’s Ghost mounted a late bid to come from last at the three-quarter mark to take the $100,000 Belle Mahone Stakes on Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Belle Mahone Stakes

Luis Contreras worked out the winning trip aboard the four-year-old Ghostzapper-Gambling Girl filly for trainer Josie Carroll and owner Ivan Dalos.

Gamble’s Ghost and Contreras followed in fifth-place along the rail early on tracking 3-2 favourite Ice Festival, a graded winner by Awesome Again, while Cced led the way through opening fractions of :25.08 and :50.33. After racing just outside of the leader, 22-1 longshot Silver Sidney took over command nearing three-quarters in 1:15.20 and the backfield began to fan out wide turning for home.

Meanwhile, Gamble’s Ghost was shuffled to the back of the six-horse field by the third quarter mark and staged a rally outside for a clear path in the stretch. She then downed Silver Sidney in the straightaway and drew off to a two and a quarter length victory in 1:44.83. Silver Sidney held on for second-place as Ice Festival closed inside for third. 

After the race, Carroll praised Contreras’s smart move aboard the filly to get her in a position to win.

“This filly does have a propensity for trouble, so if you find yourself in trouble, just make sure you get her clear,” said Carroll. “I could see he was stalking the one horse there and it didn’t look like it was going to open and he sacrificed a little bit of ground to get her out and did a very, very nice job with her.”

Gamble’s Ghost paid $6.10, $4.20 and $2.50 as the 2-1 second choice in the wagering following a fifth-place finish in the Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes contested on July 2 over 1-1/4 miles on the turf. She was successful for the second time in three starts this year returning to the Tapeta track where she was victorious on June 9 as well as in her past graded stakes wins.

“It was really simple with this filly,” said Contreras. “She likes to break and sit and relax and just see how the pace goes and go from there.

“I think she can run on the grass too, but she had a real bad experience on the trips… She seems like she loves the synthetic.”

Gamble’s Ghost earned her fifth career win from 13 starts and pushed her bankroll over $460,000. The multiple graded stakes winner was bred in Ontario by Tall Oaks Farm.

 “She always has been a nice horse,” said Dalos. “I try to breed good horses, as you know, and some of them turn out better than others, but I’ve been very fortunate to have nice fillies and I’ve got a couple of nice ones now on the ground and we just keep on trying.”

A Graded 3 winner at two and three, Gamble's Ghost is Ghostzapper's 10th blacktype winner in 2017. Among the others are seven Graded winners including the Grade 1 winners Shaman Ghost and Paulaussilverlining.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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09.02.2017

Fort Larned's Blonde Bomber Turns Heads at Gulfstream Park

Blonde Bomber became the latest first crop winner for her sire Fort Larned with a sparkling 4......

Blonde Bomber became the latest first crop winner for her sire Fort Larned with a sparkling 4 1/2-length victory in a Gulfstream Park maiden special contest.

Watch Blonde Bomber's maiden victory

The Arindel Farm homebred broke from post 5 under Emisael Jaramillo and was in-hand along the inside during the early stages of the 6-furlong heat. She steadied entering the far turn but once guided to the outside by Jaramillo the grey filly proved no match for her rivals. She rallied four-wide to gain the lead at the top of the stretch and coasted home from there. Her a final quarter shaded :13. 

Three-time Grade 1 hero Fort Larned is best known for his 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic victory over eventual 2013 Classic champ and fellow Adena Springs Kentucky stallion Mucho Macho Man. Among his other promising first crop winners is the $170,000 juvenile Fort Wise Treaty. 

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08.30.2017

Summer Sunday Still Perfect; Romps in $200,000 Muskoka Stakes

Summer Sunday remained unbeaten in three starts with a sparkling gate to wire performance in......

Summer Sunday remained unbeaten in three starts with a sparkling gate to wire performance in Wednesday night's $201,200 OLG/OR Muskoka Stakes on the annual Canadian Millions card.

Watch the Muskoka Stakes

Trained by Stuart Simon for owners Anne and William Scott, Summer Sunday arrived at the 6 1/2-furlong sprint for two-year-old fillies with a perfect record from two starts including a last-out score in the Nandi Stakes on August 6.

The Silent Name bay, out of 2007 Champion Two Year Old filly Dancing Allstar, was guided from the inside post by Jesse Campbell and found the front easily through splits of :22.88 and :45.71 as Hell N Wild, Hatch Gate and Clickity Clack tracked her early foot.

Campbell opened up a notch on Summer Sunday at the top of the lane and the filly responded in kind, racing away to a four-length score in 1:17.08.  Loopety Loo and Line of Vision rallied from well back to complete the trifecta.

Summer Sunday was purchased for $95,000 (Canadian) at last year's CTHS September sale, the co-highest selling yearling of the sale. She's already earned nearly $200,000 for her connections. 

"We liked the whole package,” recalled Simon of the purchase. “Bill (owner, Scott) liked her pedigree and I liked her physically. She just seemed to have all the goods about her. Bill was pretty adamant about buying her."

One race earlier on the rich Ontario Millions card, the Milwaukee Brew mare Sweater Weather went over $500,000 for her career with her second straight triumph in the Algoma Stakes.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns


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08.30.2017

Sweater Weather Over $500,000 with Algoma Stakes Victory

Frank Di Giulio Jr.’s Sweater Weather used an explosive late kick to successfully defend her title......

Frank Di Giulio Jr.’s Sweater Weather used an explosive late kick to successfully defend her title in the $125,000 OLG/OR Algoma Stakes, presented by Adena Springs Canada, on an action-packed Wednesday night at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Algoma Stakes

In the evening’s third Canadian Millions sales stakes for fillies & mares three years old and up, Sweater Weather and jockey Eurico Rosa Da Silva followed in seventh-place before picking off horses around the final turn and surging to victory by two and a half lengths. The final time was 1:45.73 over 1-1/16 miles on the Tapeta track. 

The victory was the blacktype score for the six-year-old daughter of Milwaukee Brew and it put her over the half-million dollar mark in earnings. Her bankroll now stands at $536,431 making her the fourth-highest earner by Milwaukee Brew after the Woodbine Oaks heroines Milwaukee Appeal ($1,198,674) and Ginger Brew ($970,311) and the active multiple graded winner Flipcup ($636,382) 

Sweater Weather was bred in Ontario by Osprey Stable was purchase by trainer Robert Tiller for Di Giulio for $39,000 at the 2012 CTHS September yearling sale.

One race later on the Canadian Millions card, the Silent Name filly Summer Sunday remained unbeaten with a dominant score in the $200,000 Muskoka Stakes.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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08.30.2017

Mucho Macho Man Yearling is Colt Topper at Barretts August

Hip #67, a colt from the first crop by Breeders' Cup Classic champion Mucho Macho Man, brought......

Hip #67, a colt from the first crop by Breeders' Cup Classic champion Mucho Macho Man, brought $120,000 at Tuesday's Barretts August sale. That price tag made him the highest-selling colt at California's premier yearling auction.

Consigned by McCarthy Thoroughbreds, the flashy chestnut is out of the City Zip dam Longing and hails from the family of champion multi-millionaire Wando. Like his sire, the colt has good size and scope and is typical of what breeders are reporting from Mucho Macho Man's first crop. He was purchased by Blinkers On Racing Stable.

Hip #67 is the second six-figure yearling for his sire this month after a $140,000 colt at the Fasig-Tipton New York-Bred Preferred auction on August 13. 

Aside from his dramatic victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic over champions Will Take Charge and Declaration of War, Mucho Macho Man won several other stakes including the Grade 1 Awesome Again Stakes. As a sophomore the hickory colt won the Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes and competed in all three Triple Crown races, placing in the Kentucky Derby, all before his June 15 third birthday.

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08.20.2017

Ghostzapper's Unbeaten Dak Attack Scores Big in Ellis Park Juvenile

Albaugh Family Stable and Brereton Jones' Dak Attack took full advantage of a fast pace and closed......

Touchdown, Dak Attack!

Albaugh Family Stables' 2-year-old colt Dak Attack poured it on down the stretch for a three-length victory over Northern Trail, with Churchill Downs' Grade 3 Bashford Manor winner Ten City another 1 3/4 lengths back in third in Sunday's $75,000 Ellis Park Juvenile at Ellis Park.

“He went down there and did what he was supposed to do,” trainer Dale Romans said by phone from Saratoga Springs, N.Y. “That was a good field of horses he beat, and I think his future is bright.”

Dak Attack is a son of the Adena Springs stallion Ghostzapper, the 2004 Horse of the Year and Breeders' Cup Classic winner, and out Indian Spell, a daughter of Kentucky Oaks winner Proud Spell. The $625,000 Keeneland yearling purchase was bred by Brereton Jones' Airdrie Stud, with the Jones family staying in for a piece of the colt.

Like his namesake, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott, the 2-year-old colt Dak Attack performed error-free in running his record to 2 for 2. He was a golden boy in the paddock when other youngsters were boisterous, handled post 11 in a field of 11 with aplomb, swooping up from seventh to take charge in the final eighth-mile while covering seven-eighths of a mile in 1:22.96. He paid $6.20 to win as the second choice.

“I had a great trip,” said jockey Robby Albarado. “Historically you wouldn't prefer the outside post, but circumstances with 2-year-olds, the second start, I was able to let the race unfold in front of me and I wasn't committed to any spot on the track. I got my sights on Ten City. I got to draft next to him, pulling with him around there, matching strides and turning for home I tried to pull away from him. And he did.”

It all came after Dak Attack won his debut at Churchill Downs against only three rivals, albeit the runner-up, Sporting Chance, won his next start at Saratoga and will go in the Grade 1 Hopeful.

“He had to go wide, he got some dirt in his face. He did everything he's supposed to do,” Romans said. “And he also ran fast, which is good. He's doing everything his namesake did. He's a rookie like Dak was last year, yet he's the star of our show.”

Romans and Jason Loutsch, the co-owner and racing manager for the Albaugh stable, said Dak Attack probably will train up to Keeneland's Grade 1 Breeders' Futurity. The barn also has Saratoga's Grade 3 Sanford runner-up Free Drop Billy going in Churchill Downs' Grade 3 Iroquois and Saratoga Special runner-up Hollywood Star for Saratoga's Grade 1 Hopeful.

“As soon as we got in the starting gate, boy, immediately the gates opened up,” said Dennis Albaugh, the stable patriarch and Loutsch's father in law. “He wasn't quite ready, so we didn't get out perfect. But still not bad. Robby rode an unbelievable race. He just hung in there and poured it on. Man, we knew that horse was bred right, and he did the right things in the race. We were very happy with him. He's a strong one coming into this next season.”

“We're very proud of him; he ran hard,” Loutsch said. “All along we thought he was the most talented. We just took a little easier approach with him and brought him to Ellis. We had it in the plan book all along, and the plan came together and it's working great. We're coming off back to back second-place finishes at Saratoga, so I'm not taking anything away from our other two horses. But that was professional today. Breaking from the (11), sitting back there and eating dirt. And Robby asked him to go, he went.”

Albarado had ridden the Kenny McPeek-trained Ten City to victory in a maiden win and the Bashford Manor. While he rides extensively for both Romans and McPeek, he was committed to Dak Attack in this race by the time McPeek decided to run. Jack Gilligan picked up the mount on Ten City, who went off the odds-on favorite at 7-10. While Ten City was a handful in the paddock, Gilligan said he was calm in the post parade.

“Ten City is a very nice horse,” Albarado said. “He won the stakes last time out. I'm not going to take anything away from Dak Attack. He's royally bred and was well prepared for today, as he was for his first start. “There are some talented babies in Kentucky. I'm excited for the fall. His talent is striking. But his demeanor, going to the track, coming off the track, walking to the winner's circle. Nothing fazes the horse. He settles. He's fast enough to be forwardly placed if they go too slow. He's been perfect to this point.” 

Dak Attack is the 10th 2017 Stakes winner for Ghostzapper and his second stakes winner on the weekend after Proctor's Ledge collected the Lake Placid S. (G2) on the Saturday program at Saratoga.

-by Jennie Rees (edited)

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08.19.2017

Ghostzapper's Proctor's Ledge Sails to 2nd Graded Score at Saratoga

Thriving on the Saratoga Race Course lawn, Proctor's Ledge circled her rivals and unleashed a......

Thriving on the Saratoga Race Course lawn, Proctor's Ledge circled her rivals and unleashed a brilliant turn of foot to win the $300,000 Lake Placid Stakes (G2T) by three-quarters of a length. 

Watch the Lake Placid Stakes

The win was the second consecutive graded stakes win for Patricia Moseley's homebred Ghostzapper  filly at the Spa, as she also took last month's Lake George Stakes (G3T), her first graded stakes victory. 

"She's something else, to beat fillies like that so impressively," said winning trainer Brendan Walsh. "She's been threatening all the time to do this and getting better and better. It's just fantastic and great for everybody involved—super owners, my guys working with her. It's just brilliant."

In Saturday's 1 1/8-mile turf test, Coasted out-hustled the field of five 3-year-old fillies to take the lead going into the first turn. Party Boat remained a close second, as La Coronel raced in third and Proctor's Ledge, with Javier Castellano up, galloped along easily in fourth, with the post-time favorite Uni at the rear. 

Coasted led the field through easy fractions of :24.39, :50.03, and 1:14.11 through six furlongs. Around the far turn, La Coronel and Proctor's Ledge both attempted to circle the frontrunners, a move that pushed Proctor's Ledge five wide. The field was fanned out five wide at the head of the stretch in a charge to the wire.

Finding another gear, Proctor's Ledge streaked past her competition and completed the race in a final time of 1:47.74 over a turf course rated good. Uni, also sent wide coming out of the turn, closed for second and Party Boat was another 1 1/2 lengths back in third. La Coronel finished fourth, followed by Coasted. 

"She's a come-from-behind horse. The way she did it was very impressive," Castellano said. "She was nice, easy, and relaxed. 
"I love the way she runs. No matter where you put her, she'll always show up."

As for what is next for the filly, Walsh said he is unsure about a Breeders' Cup try. 
"I don't know about the Breeders' Cup, but you have to think about a race like the (Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Presented by Lane's End (G1T) at Keeneland Oct. 14) next for her," the trainer said. 

The winner returned $6.40, $3.30, and $2.50 across the board as the second betting choice. 

Proctor's Ledge made a similar move in the 1 1/16-mile Lake George, when she raced in fifth early before she edged away to win by 1 3/4 lengths. She started out 2017 with two wins and then jumped into graded stakes company in April, when she finished third, 3 1/4 lengths behind Lake Placid challenger La Coronel, in the Appalachian Stakes presented by Japan Racing Association (G3T). 

She again finished behind La Coronel when she came in fourth in the Edgewood Stakes Presented by Forcht Bank (G3T) in May at Churchill Downs after fanning out wide, and then finished second in the Regret Stakes (G3T) at Churchill Downs before her Lake George run. 

Bred in Kentucky by her owner out of the stakes-placed Arch mare Archstone, Proctor's Ledge has four wins from eight starts with earnings of $361,083. She is among Ghostzapper's nine stakes winners in 2017.

-edited from www.bloodhorse.com

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08.17.2017

Macho Uno's Picco Uno The One in Union Avenue S. at Saratoga

Picco Uno posted an authoritative first stakes victory Thursday afternoon at Saratoga, drawing off......

Picco Uno posted an authoritative first stakes victory Thursday afternoon at Saratoga, drawing off to win by 2 1/2 lengths over the 3-2 favorite Quezon in the $100,000 Union Avenue Stakes for New York-bred fillies and mares.

Watch the Union Avenue Stakes

Given time off leading up to Thursday’s $100,000 Union Avenue Stakes, at her favored distance of 6½ furlongs, Picco Uno looked like the same horse who had put together a four-race streak win streak from late December to mid-May. Tracking pacesetter She’s All Ready into upper stretch, the four-year-old daughter of Macho Uno surged to the front, holding off all comers in winning by 2½ lengths.

Picco Uno covered 6 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:16.57 and paid $9.70.

“It’s very exciting,” said winning trainer Jason Servis. “The owners flew up from Georgia, so I’m glad it all worked out. She definitely benefited from the time off since her last start. She had a terrific breeze the other day. She ran like we were hoping she would. She’s an average-looking filly, but she gets over the ground pretty good.”

Picco Uno broke alertly from her no. 9 post and had no trouble settling into a comfortable spot behind She’s All Ready. And there was plenty of room to operate when Picco Uno made her move swinging into the stretch. The lead was a length and a half at the eighth pole, but there was no serious threat as Irad Ortiz Jr. worked on Picco Uno through the final sixteenth.

“I always give her an aggressive warm-up because she’s the type of filly who doesn’t show much in the morning, and she’s so quiet,” said Ortiz. “But when it’s time to run, she can run. I tried to make sure she was on her game today because she had to run.”

Servis said Ortiz used good judgement taking Picco Uno off the early leaders.  

“It looked like he was going to try and go,” said Servis. “He’s riding well. (This filly) gets over the ground real good and doesn’t work hard to do it.”

Picco Uno, who competes for Kennesaw Mountain Racing LLC, won for the sixth time in a dozen starts and has now earned $299,667. She also has three seconds and a third. Picco Uno was bred in New York by Topsmeade LLC and Adena Springs Farm.

-edited from www.drf.com & www.saratogian.com

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08.12.2017

Stronach Stables Involuntary Best in Flaming Page Stakes

Involuntary and jockey Gary Boulanger prevailed in a photo finish over Happyness to win the......

Involuntary and jockey Gary Boulanger prevailed in a photo finish over Happyness to win the $100,000 Flaming Page Stakes for fillies and mares three years old and up on Friday at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Flaming Page Stakes

Involuntary and Happyness (Alan Garcia) tracked leader Belle de Nuit (Patrick Husbands), who galloped out to a commanding lead early in the 1-1/2 mile turf event. As the pacesetter began to tire and back through the field heading to the final turn, Involuntary took command with Happyness looming to her outside and ready for a stretch duel. Those two fillies duked it out in front of the grandstand with Involuntary ultimately holding off Happyness for the game victory in 2:29.38. Moonlight Sky (Rafael Hernandez) finished third. 

“She just glided by [Belle de Nuit] on her own,” said Boulanger after the race. “When I called on her at the head of the lane when Alan came to her, she just cut a couple of gears and we were running down the lane pretty hard today.”

Bred in Kentucky by Dr. Catherine Wills and owned by Stronach Stables, the headstrong chestnut filly by City Zip out of Invariable earned the first win of her four-year-old campaign following top three finishes in the Dance Smartly and Nassau (Gr. 2) Stakes under the care of trainer Josie Carroll.

“She’s been a very, very game filly this whole season and showing a lot of character in developing,” said Boulanger. “We’re trying to teach her to relax and Josie’s team has done a great job with her, and her and I kind of get along and she’s pretty easy to handle now. She got a little hot today, but when you call on her, she gives you everything she has.”

“I’m delighted and thankful that the Stronach Group sent this filly to me, and between Gary and her exercise rider Billy O’Connor, they’ve done a tremendous job with this filly,” acknowledged Carroll. “She goes out late every morning when there’s nothing for her to chase because if there’s something for her to chase, she’s going to catch it. So they’ve really, really worked with getting this filly to relax, come off the bridle, and I think it was their accomplishment to get her to go a mile and a half.”

Involuntary earned her fourth career win in 10 starts and boosted her bankroll over the $200,000 mark. She is the 176th blacktype winner owned by Frank Stronach.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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08.07.2017

Summer Sunday Caps Huge Weekend for Silent Name

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for Summer Sunday to pick up her first stakes victory.......

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for Summer Sunday to pick up her first stakes victory. A beautiful summer Sunday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack was the scene of her $125,000 Nandi Stakes conquest in which she defeated a field of two-year-old Ontario-sired fillies.

Watch the Nandi Stakes

Jockey Jesse Campbell rode the undefeated Silent Name-Dancing Allstar filly to victory for trainer Simon Stuart and owners Anne and William Scott. Bred by Trinity West Stables, Summer Sunday was the co-sales topper at last year's CTHS Canadian Preferred Yearling sale.

She is the second Silent Name juvenile stakes winner on the weekend. Be Vewy Vewy Quiet, also unbeaten, conquered the Clarendon S. on Woodbine's Saturday card.

Summer Sunday left from post six and fought with Shady Well Stakes starter Miss Danielle (Emma-Jayne Wilson) for the lead through fractions of :22.36 and :45.50 before taking charge down the stretch to score in 1:04.49 over five and a half furlongs on the Tapeta. The Mark Casse-trained Rosemere (Patrick Husbands) made a run for Summer Sunday late and finished three-quarters of a length behind the winner in her career debut while Miss Danielle held on for third in a photo finish with Belmont shipper She’s the Berries (David Moran).

“She won handily her first time out [on July 15]. I worked her once before she ran and I loved her,” said Campbell, who picked off a couple of other fillies in the Nandi to ride Summer Sunday. “She’s got a great head on her and talent to boot so that can go a long ways. It’s always nice to win stakes, but when you get to win for your good friends – Stuart’s a good friend of mine – it’s extra special.”

Sent postward as the 2-1 favourite following her winning career debut last month, Summer Sunday paid $6, $3.60 and $2.70 across the board.

“I think she’s continuing to advance forward,” said Simon. “Every week she seems like a little bit better filly. She really is just a dream horse to train and she’s got such a good head on her and she does what you ask of her so we haven’t been very hard on her. We were trying to look at the big picture of the full career so I think she’s got a lot of good things in front of her still.”

Simon indicated that the filly’s next assignment is expected to be the Muskoka Stakes on August 30.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns

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08.06.2017

Silent Name Son Remains Unbeaten in Clarendon Stakes

Even-money favourite Be Vewy Vewy Quiet and jockey Sheena Ryan were victorious in the $125,000......

Even-money favourite Be Vewy Vewy Quiet and jockey Sheena Ryan were victorious in the $125,000 Clarendon Stakes for Ontario-bred two-year-olds on Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack.

Watch the Clarendon Stakes
 
Be Vewy Vewy Quiet dueled inside of Water Polo (Omar Moreno) for the top spot through fractions of :22.33 and :45.63 before kicking clear down the stretch to score by two lengths in 1:03.90 over five and a half furlongs on the Tapeta track. Eskiminzin (Patrick Husbands) swept three-high turning for home and came on for second-place while Aheadbyacentury (Jesse Campbell) edged out Sent From Heaven (Eurico Rosa Da Silva) to show.  Water Polo finished fifth and Differential (Gary Boulanger) completed the field.

The homebred Silent Name-Advanced Green gelding is now undefeated in two career starts for trainer Robert Tiller and owners Frank Di Giulio Jr., Anthony D’Onofrio and J. Peri. He kicked off an impressive weekend for Silent Name, also the sire of unbeaten Nandi S. winner Summer Sunday the following afternoon.
 
“He breaks well, Bob’s done a great job teaching him from the gate and I decided to sit with that one just so we’d have a clean trip,” said Ryan, noting that the winner finished strong. “He was just getting warmed up, he didn’t even want to pull up.”
 
Be Vewy Vewy Quiet's Clarendon win marked the second stakes victory for the Ryan-Tiller combination following a win last year in the Bull Page Stakes for two-year-olds with Dragon’s Cry.
 
“She’s a good horsewoman and she works very hard,” said Tiller of his winning rider. “She has a very positive attitude and that’s very important to me. Even when you’re going bad, keep going, don’t let them take you alive. You’ve got to get up the next morning and you’ve got to have that positive attitude and she just gets around the stable area and works for everybody. She helped me out this spring when times were tough, you know, we had a little shortage of exercise riders so I felt I owed her a horse that could maybe run a little bit.
 
“He’s turned out better than I even thought he would,” continued Tiller. “I really liked this race today because he really had all the worst of it. He was under strain all the way and showed me something from the eighth pole home so we’re thrilled. And it’s a homebred for Frankie and his partners, and he’s a good horse, I think he looks like he’s a runner.”

Silent Name is the leading two-year-old sire in Canada again in 2017 and is now the sire of four juvenile stakes winners in the past year.

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo Michael Burns

  

 

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07.26.2017

'Paula' Adds to Championship Resume with Honorable Miss S. (G2) Score

Paulassilverlining earned her third straight graded stakes victory when she out-battled a stubborn......

Paulassilverlining earned her third straight graded stakes victory when she out-battled a stubborn Finley'sluckycharm to win the G2 Honorable Miss Stakes by a neck at Saratoga.

Watch the Honorable Miss Stakes

The 5-year-old mare by Ghostzapper remains undefeated in 2017 for trainer Chad Brown and owner Juddmonte Farms and burnished her credentials for an Eclipse Award as North America's top female sprinter. Paulassilverlining started her year with a victory in the G1 Madison Stakes at Keeneland, and followed that up with a win in the G1 Humana Distaff at Churchill Downs on Derby Day.

“Jose [Ortiz] knows her so well, I really didn't give him any instructions," said trainer Chad Brown. "He timed it just right. She has a lot of heart. [Since] arriving in our barn, she's done nothing wrong. She's been a real pleasant addition to our stable: so competitive, a lot of heart, a lot of talent."

A field of five went to the post in the Honorable Miss, with the Bret Calhoun-trained Finley'sluckycharm sent off as the even money favorite. As per her style, Finley'sluckycharm took the lead right out of the starting gate. She was soon joined by outsider Disco Chick, as Paulasilverlining sat just off of them in third.

Paulasilverlining began to close on the leaders entering the far turn, and soon rolled up to challenge Finley'sluckycharm as they hit the top of the stretch. The talented distaffers dueled the length of the stretch, with it appearing that Finley'sluckycharm would come out on top. However, with one final surge nearing the wire, Paulasilverlining overhauled her rival to claim victory by a long neck. Final time for the six furlongs was 1:10.10.

She is Ghostzapper's second graded winner during the first week of the 2017 Saratoga meeting after Proctor's Ledge took the Lake George S. (G2) on opening day.

Bred in Kentucky by Vince Scuderi, Paulassilverlining began her career racing for him under the care of trainer Michelle Nevin. For those connections, she compiled four graded stakes wins and finished third in the 2016 Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Santa Anita. Following that performance, Prince Khalid Abdullah purchased her as a future broodmare for his international superstar Arrogate.

-edited from www.paulickreport.com

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07.23.2017

First Stakes Winner for Point of Entry

Glamanation broke her maiden in style, taking Sunday's co-featured $125,000 Shady Well Stakes, at......

Glamanation broke her maiden in style, taking Sunday's $125,000 Shady Well Stakes, at Woodbine.

Watch the Shady Well Stakes

Bred by Adena Springs, Glamanation banked $75,000 in victory while providing Point of Entry with his first stakes winner and third winner in five days.

Owned and trained by Mike Doyle, the daughter of Point of Entry-Golden Scarf by Orientate came into the 5 ½-furlong Tapeta sprint for Ontario-bred juvenile fillies off a fourth-place effort to the unbeaten Dream It Is in the My Dear Stakes on June 24. The bay finished second to that same rival in her career bow on May 27, Dream It Is is the early leader of the North American juvenile fillies after an sensational performance in the Schuylerville S. (G3) on the July 21 opening day card at Saratoga.

With Davy Moran aboard, Glamanation was settled in fifth of six as Miss Danielle and Jamaica Me Home duked it out through opening splits of :23.34 and :47.67, with favourite Moka Latte keeping close tabs on the duo. Moran moved Glamanation to the outside for the stretch drive and the pair soon picked off the leaders, before fending off the Silent Name filly Mega Monster by one length.

Glamanation covered 5 1/2-furlongs in 1:05.94.

An equipment change, adding the blinkers for the Shady Well, proved to be a winning move. 

"She ran second to Barb Minshall’s good filly (Dream It Is) the first time out and personally, I think she probably could have won that day,” said Moran. “When she went to go by, she started laying in on horses, so today, I tried to swing her out a little bit and she even tried it for a couple of strides. She’s only learning and she’s improving every race. I think there’s better for her to come still.”

Doyle is also hopeful of more pleasing results ahead, including the opportunity for his young pupil to test out the Woodbine green scene.

“Richard Hogan bought the horse in September (from Adena Springs),” said Doyle. “He called me and I bought her off him. She had a couple of vet issues you had to forgive her for and I just like the stallion and I kind of liked the way she looked. 

“I always keep thinking I should be running her on the grass,” he continued. “The way the races keep coming up – I thought she would have won maybe already by now and I could have just gone to turf – but now she’s won a nice race and her next start will hopefully be something headed towards the (Grade 1, Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series “Win and You’re In”) Natalma (September 17, at Woodbine).”  

-edited from www.woodbineentertainment.com, photo by Michael Burns


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07.22.2017

A Huge Week for Point of Entry

Moonlight Rain came from well off the pace with a flying finish to capture her debut over the......

Point of Entry was represented by his first three winners, including his first Stakes winner, during the third week of July.

The Adena Springs-bred and sold Glamanation is that Stakes winner after surging to win the $125,000 Shady Well Stakes at Woodbine on July 23.

Watch the Shady Well Stakes

The prior afternoon in a grassy six furlong Maiden Special contest at Woodbine, the filly Moonlight Rain (pictured) unleashed a furious stretch rally to capture her debut over the over a field of males.

Watch Moonlight Rain's debut win 

Moonlight Rain rated somewhat greenly behind fractions of :24.06 and :47.03 and gathered steam as the field spun into the stretch. Left with significant work to do, she kicked it into high gear late, splitting horses to get up and score. The final time was 1:11 flat.

Bred and owned by Gabe Grossberg and trained by Mark Casse, the winner’s dam is Sweet Sugaree, a stakes-placed daughter of Tiznow.

Four days earlier, the Adena Springs-bred and sold Point of Entry son Happy King scored in his debut at Hipódromo de las Américas in Mexico City.

By the late, great Dynaformer, Point of Entry was a five-time Grade 1 winner of nearly $2.5 million.

- photo by Michael Burns

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07.21.2017

Ghostzpper's 'Ledge' Much the Best in Saratoga's Lake George S. (G3)

Patricia Moseley's homebred Proctor's Ledge earned her first graded stakes victory in Friday's G3......

After earning a pair of graded stakes placings in Kentucky earlier this season, Proctor's Ledge did not let another opportunity pass her by July 21 at Saratoga Race Course.

Patricia Moseley's homebred engaged three other fillies in the early stretch of the $150,000 Lake George Stakes (G3T)before flashing a final gear none of her rivals possessed. The 3-year-old daughter of Ghostzapper, drew clear for a 1 3/4-length score in the 1 1/16-mile race on the Mellon Turf Course. 

Watch the Lake George Stakes

Early on, Proctor's Ledge raced in a close fifth, as Chubby Star led the field through a quarter-mile in :24.71. Considering Chubby Star had not raced better than fifth at first call in his previous three starts, the front-running approach under Ricardo Santana Jr. was a bit of a surprise, but he looked comfortable through a half-mile in :49.66. Coming out of the turn, Chubby Star was engaged by Victory to Victory on the outside while 3-1 favorite Defiant Honor and John Velazquez looked for room inside.

Castellano kept Proctor's Edge just off the slow pace early and then the pair rallied three wide into the stretch, taking command near the eighth pole. A pair of closers would pick up the minor awards as Hope Jones' Party Boat finished second and Peter Brant's Fifty Five finished third.

"I loved the way she did it; she got a slow pace; good position, and she finished good," Castellano said. "She was impressive. I never rode her before, but she did amazing. She was in a comfortable rhythm. She was in a good spot and turning for home, she kicked really well."

Proctor's Ledge completed the 1 1/16 miles in 1:41.47 on firm turf, returning $14.20, $7, and $4.30 across the board. Party Boat paid $5.70 to place and $3.80 to show, and Fifty Five returned $3.60 to show.

Proctor's Ledge, racing on Lasix for the first time, entered off a runner-up finish in the Regret Stakes (G3T) June 17 on the Churchill Downs turf, where she finished 3 1/2 lengths behind Sweeping Paddy, who contended into the far turn before fading to last in Friday's Lake George. 

Trainer Brendan Walsh believes he has an improving filly on his hands.

"We might come back to run later in the meet. We'll leave her here, and see how she comes out of it, and go from there," Walsh said. "There's a lot of spots for a 3-year-old filly at the end of the year, but I think she's going to have a hell of a second half of the year, and I think she's going to be a better filly next year."

Kentucky-bred Proctor's Ledge is out of stakes-placed Arch mare Archstone, who has produced four winners from as many starters, a group that also includes stakes-placed Mission Driven by Ghostzapper's sire Awesome Again.

Proctor's Ledge is the 7th graded winner of the year for Ghostzapper. Only Tapit has more graded winners this year among North American stallions.

-edited from www.bloodhorse.com


 

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07.16.2017

Adena Bred King's Ghost Latest Ghostzapper Stakes Winner

Miller Racing’s King’s Ghost took the long way around the Gulfstream Park turf course Saturday but......

Miller Racing’s King’s Ghost (pictured inside) took the long way around the Gulfstream Park turf course Saturday but still managed to come away with a win by the slightest of noses in the Treasure Coast Handicap.

Watch the Treasure Coast Handicap

Trained by Marty Wolfson, the 5-year-old daughter of Ghostzapper rallied from last in a field of 10 fillies and mares in the mile turf handicap to prevail over Quebec by a nose. She ran a mile over a firm turf in 1:36.13.

After getting pinched back to trail the field into the backstretch, King’s Ghost was forced to race four wide while advancing on the leaders under Jorge Ruiz. Cowgirl Tough, a 50-1 outsider ridden by Ramsey Zimmerman, showed the way into the stretch, as King’s Ghost swung five wide coming off the final turn. Joined to his outside by Quebec, who made an impressive rush to grab a narrow lead in deep stretch, King’s Ghost fought back to capture her second straight race at Gulfstream.

“I had some trouble early and had to race really wide, but I waited to ask her and when I did, she really gave me a good kick,” Ruiz said through an interpreter.

King's Ghost was bred in Kentucky by Adena Springs and sold by the farm at the 2013 Keeneland September Yearling sale. She is Ghostzapper's 56th Northern Hemisphere blackytpe from 487 starters (11%) and his 8th blacktype winner of 2017.

Adena Springs has now bred 217 stakes winners who have conquered 512 stakes races.

-edited from www.gulfstreampark.com, photo by Leslie Martin


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07.09.2017

Another Saturday, Another Ghostzapper Graded Stakes Winner

Seven-year-old Ghost Hunter scored the 18th victory of his 46-race career in Saturday's Grade 3......

Seven-year-old Ghost Hunter scored the 18th victory of his 46-race career in Saturday's Grade 3 Arlington Handicap at Arlington Park, getting a ground-saving ride from Edwin Gonzalez and edging long shot Oak Brook at the wire by three-quarters of a length. Kasaqui, the Argentine-bred who won the 2016 Arlington Handicap and finished a close second in the G1 Arlington Million, finished third.

Time for the 1 3/16 miles on firm turf was 1:55.86. Ghost Hunter is a gelding by Ghostzapper out of Hartfelt, by Kafwain. He was bred in Kentucky by Adena Springs and sold by the farm at the 2011 Fasig-Tipton July Yearling auction.

Ghost Hunter is Ghostzapper's 31st lifetime graded winner and his 6th of 2017. This year he's also been represented by multiple Grade 1 winner Paulasilverlining, Grade 1 winner Shaman Ghost, Faypien (G2), Iliad (G2) and McCraken (G3) as well as Queen's Plate heroine Holy Helena.

Owned by Triple K Stables and trained by Jamie Ness, Ghost Hunter saved ground throughout, sitting just behind Crewman, the long shot pacesetter who carved out fractions of :23.71, :48.61 1:14.43 and 1:38.86 for the opening mile.

Oak Brook, close up early, engaged the front runner to the outside turning into the stretch, with Gonzalez finding a narrow opening along the inside for Ghost Hunter. “I think my decision to go inside was the right one,” said Gonzalez. “I was trying to decide – if I went outside it would use too much – and then the door opened and I took it.”

Winner of the Presque Isle Mile Stakes in the middle of a six-race winning streak in 2016, Ghost Hunter was winning his first graded stakes in the Arlington Handicap. 

The Arlington Handicap serves as a prep for the historic Arlington Million on Aug. 12.

-edited from www.paulickreport.com, photo by Four Footed Fotos

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07.06.2017

Holy Helena an All-Stronach Production

Bred in Ontario by Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs, Queen's Plate winner Holy Helena is 100% Stronach-bred....

The Queen’s Plate is worth only listed black type status in the international pattern system because it is restricted to Canadian-breds, but it remains Canada’s greatest and most prestigious race, as well as one of the richest, with a $1 million purse. Despite that munificent prize and because it is a restricted stakes, the quality of the winners of the Queen’s Plate is highly variable. But it is almost certain that this year’s winner, Holy Helena, is a high-class filly by any standard.

Watch Holy Helena win 158th Queen's Plate

The Queen’s Plate was Holy Helena’s third consecutive victory from only four lifetime starts - she finished second in her first start on April 14 at Aqueduct - and came four weeks after her victory in the Woodbine Oaks at the eponymous Toronto track. Bred in Ontario by Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs, Holy Helena is 100% Stronach-bred.

Her sire, 2004 Horse of the Year and champion older male Ghostzapper, ranks as the best horse bred by Stronach in his more than 40 years in the Thoroughbred industry. Ghostzapper’s sire, 1996 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Awesome Again, probably the holder of that title before Ghostzapper, won nine of his 11 starts, all from 2002 through 2005. A come-from-behind winner of the Grade 1 Vosburgh near the end of his 3-year-old campaign, Ghostzapper transformed into a front-running monster at 4, winning all four of his starts, culminating in a tour-de-force victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Lone Star Park, racing unchallenged through 1 ¼ miles in 1:59.02.

Ghostzapper got off to a rather slow start at stud, but his record has improved steadily as his offspring have matured. He rarely sires precocious 2-year-olds, and his best tend to begin to show their best form, just as he did, toward the middle of their 3-year-old seasons. Ghostzapper has sired 65 stakes winners from 632 foals age 3 and up, a sparkling 10.3% stakes winners to foals ratio that compares very favorably to several stallions who are much more fashionable than he.

Ghostzapper is enjoying a banner year, standing third on the general sire list, largely due to the efforts of his best son to date, Shaman Ghost (out of Getback Time, by Gilded Time), who won the Queen’s Plate two years ago, and scored this year in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap after running second to the great Arrogate in the Pegasus Cup Invitational. Shaman Ghost won the Sovereign Award as champion Canadian 3-year-old male in 2015, and Ghostzapper’s daughter Judy the Beauty (Holy Blitz, by Holy Bull) earned an Eclipse Award as champion female sprinter in 2014.

Adena Springs acquired Holy Helena’s second dam, My Marchesa, by Stately Don, privately after running seventh in the 1994 Chrysanthemum Handicap at Laurel, and she never won a race in Stronach’s black, gold, and red colors. Earlier, she did win the Gala Lil Stakes and run second in the Navajo Princess and Gold Digger Stakes. My Marchesa ran third in the Carotene Stakes for Stronach’s Adena Springs. She produced Grade 2 Twilight Derby winner Rookie Sensation, by Unbridled’s Song; Grade 3 winner Mark One, by Alphabet Soup; and Japanese stakes winner Daiwa Carson, by Carson City; as well as Archduchess, the dam of Grade 3 Ohio Derby winner Pleasant Prince, by Indy King.

My Marchesa came by her prowess as a broodmare honestly, since she was half-sister to Canadian and American graded winner Black Cash, by Deposit Ticket, a horse Stronach purchased as a weanling for $30,000. My Marchesa’s dam, Sooni, by Buckpasser was half-sister to leading sire Raja Baba, by Bold Ruler, and five other stakes winners out of the great foundation mare Missy Baba, by My Babu.

Holy Helena’s dam, Holy Grace, by Holy Bull, won 2 of 14 starts, but her second foal, Holy Boss, by Street Boss, won the Grade 2 Amsterdam Stakes and three other stakes in 2014. Holy Helena is Holy Grace’s fourth foal, and the mare has since produced a Fort Larned juvenile filly named Holy Fort who has not yet raced, a yearling filly by Point of Entry, and a 2017 colt by Silver Max.

It is notable that two of Ghostzapper’s best offspring are out of mares by Holy Bull, but otherwise he has shown little preference in terms of broodmare sires or their sire lines. His 10 other Grade 1 or Group 1 winners are out of mares by 10 different sires from various sire lines.

- by Daily Racing Form Breeding columnist John Sparkman (edited)

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07.04.2017

Impressive First Winner for Fort Larned

Two youngsters who appear to have big futures were on display in Ellis Park’s fifth race Tuesday......

Two youngsters who appear to have big futures were on display in Ellis Park’s fifth race Tuesday for 2-year-olds running a mile on turf. Fort Wise Treaty and jockey Shaun Bridgmohan got through on the rail to edge favored Eclipsed Moon, who rallied on the outside only to come up a neck short.

Fort Wise Treaty is the first winner for the Adena Springs stallion Fort Larned, winner of the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita for Kentucky-based trainer Ian Wilkes and jockey Brian Hernandez Jr.

A $170,000 OBS April 2-year-old purchase owned by Mark Breen of Connecticut, Fort Wise Treaty did a lot of things right in his first start. Breaking from post 7, the colt settled nicely in mid-pack and was content to be on the inside, where he stayed the rest of the way, getting through traffic while finishing in 1:36.60, his last eighth-mile coming in under 12 seconds. 

“He ran great; he had a great ride, I can tell you that,” trainer Brad Cox said.  "Obviously the horse who was second looks like a really nice horse and had a wide trip. I sure don’t want to run again him next time. But it was a good effort. I was proud of the horse.”

Said Bridgmohan: “Brad did a phenomenal job. He was very professional, was there every time I needed him. All I had to do was just find him some room, and I did. And he gave me what he had.”

Cox said Fort Wise Treaty will stay at Ellis Park, where his assistant Tessa Bisha oversees that division, with the Aug. 20 Ellis Park Juvenile at seventh-eighths of a mile a possibility. 

“I wouldn’t hesitate to maybe try him on the Poly (synthetic surface) or dirt at the right distance,” he said. “I don’t want to shorten him up much. I would maybe try seven-eighths on the Poly or on the dirt, if the race came up the right way. If there’s a grass race, I prefer the grass with him, to be honest.”

-edited from www. horseracingnation.com

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07.02.2017

Holy Helena Completes Historic Oaks/Queen's Plate Sweep

Stronach Stables' homebred Holy Helena carried on the storied tradition of fillies in the Queen's......

Stronach Stables' homebred Holy Helena carried on the storied tradition of fillies in the Queen's Plate Stakes with a commanding score July 2 in the $1 million race at Woodbine. 

Watch the 158th Queen's Plate

The 3-year-old Ghostzapper filly trained by Jimmy Jerkens became the 36th filly to win the race and the third since 2011 to complete the Woodbine Oaks-Queen's Plate double following her one-length score in the Woodbine Oaks Presented by Budweiser June 11. 

In the 1 1/4-mile race Sunday, Holy Helena raced inside with a stalking trip in fourth entering the first turn, then dropped back to fifth in the backstretch, but advanced to third and into striking position in the final bend.

As the field exited the turn, the filly surged to the front on the outside and pulled clear. A closing bid from Tiz a Slam got the Tiznow colt second-place honors but never seriously challenged the winner.

State of Honor was the pacesetter, with Megagray not far off on the outside, through fractions of :24.17, :48.67, and 1:13.23 for six furlongs, but Holy Helena—who went off as the 2-1 favorite—burst by and finished off the 1 1/4 miles in 2:02.87, 3 1/2 lengths clear.

"I got a dream trip, really," said winning jockey Luis Contreras. "She broke nice—really good—and it gave me a lot of time to see the horses outside of me and what they were trying to do. But she was so nice and relaxed behind those horses. At the three-eighths (pole) I took a look back to see, where is everybody?"

It was the fourth Queen's Plate win for Stronach Stables owner Frank Stronach, following Basqueian (1994), Awesome Again (1997), and Shaman Ghost (2015). The latter is also by Ghostzapper.

“We always thought she was special, now we think she’s even more special,” Stronach said.

Other fillies to complete the Woodbine Oaks-Queen's Plate double are Lexie Lou (2014) by Adena Springs North's Sligo Bay, Inglorious (2011), Dancethruthedawn (2001), Hall of Famer Dance Smartly (1991), and La Lorgnette (1985).

Out of the Holy Bull mare Holy Grace, Holy Helena now has three wins from four starts. Prior to the Woodbine Oaks, she won a 1 1/16-mile maiden race on dirt at Belmont Park May 12 by three-quarters of a length. In her debut April 15, she ran second going 6 1/2 furlongs at Aqueduct Racetrack.

- edited from www.bloodhorse.com

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06.17.2017

Faypien is Ghostzapper's 30th Graded Stakes Winner

Faypien, a $720,000 two-year-old purchase, won her graded stakes debut in Saturday’s Grade 2......

Faypien, a $720,000 two-year-old purchase, won her graded stakes debut in Saturday’s Grade 2 Summertime Oaks at Santa Anita.

Watch the Summertime Oaks

A daughter of Ghostzapper, Faypien was well-placed throughout and held off a late threat from 10-1 Mopotism to win the $201,035 race at 1 1/16 miles by a head.

Mopotism finished a half-length in front of 17-1 another Ghostzapper filly, Spooky Woods, who was disqualified and placed fifth for altering course in the stretch, an incident that forced jockey Mike Smith to check It Tiz Well at a pivotal point in the race. 

The Summertime Oaks was Faypien’s third consecutive win for Susan and Charles Chu’s Baoma Corp. and trainer Bob Baffert. She beat maidens at seven furlongs April 23 in her second start and won her stakes debut in the Angels Flight Stakes at seven furlongs May 14.

Rafael Bejarano rode Faypien in the Summertime Oaks, and had the filly in a stalking position behind pacesetter Sheza Chattykat to early stretch before taking a narrow lead. Mopotism, who was 10th in the Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs on May 5, offered a stern challenge in the final furlong, but could not get by Faypien.

“She really ground it out and is tough,” Baffert said. “She was all-out to beat them. Rafael rode a great race and had her in the race the whole way.”

Faypien, the second choice in a field of eight, was timed in 1:43.17.

“She never stopped and tried every step,” Bejarano said.

Faypien has won 3 of 4 starts and earned $205,680. She was purchased for $720,000 at the 2016 Ocala Breeders’ Sale of 2-year-olds in-training in April of that year.

She was Ghostzapper's second graded winner in about 20 minutes on Saturday after McCraken, who scored in the Matt Winn S. (G3) at Churchill Downs. 

- edited from www.drf.com

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06.17.2017

Ghostzapper's McCraken Secures Third Graded Victory

Ian Wilkes hasn't lost faith.  He still believes that when the dust storm that is this......

Ian Wilkes hasn't lost faith.

He still believes that when the dust storm that is this year's 3-year-old male division clears, Janis Whitham's homebred McCraken will make it so his trainer won't have to say a word to convince the masses of the talents of the son of Ghostzapper.

There will be several statements that need to be made between now and season's end but the first step toward what McCraken's connections hope will be a second-half resurgence went exactly in the manner those around the multiple graded stakes winner would have scripted.

The McCraken that inspires such confidence from Wilkes is the one that showed up in the June 17 Matt Winn Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs, unleashing his typical kick after ranging up on the final turn en route to a 2 1/4-length triumph in his first outing since finishing eighth in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1). 

There is inherent pressure to deliver anytime a trainer saddles a 1-5 favorite in a field. Given the level of expectations McCraken has carried for much of his career, Wilkes just wanted to see the bay colt run like the version of himself that was widely regarded as one of the leaders of the sophomore ranks.

On Saturday night, after getting away a bit awkwardly out of post 2 in the 1 1/16-miles Matt Winn, McCraken proceeded to look like the stalwart who was unbeaten in his first four outings as he tracked along second-last in the six-horse field before accelerating on cue when nudged by jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. around the final turn.

"It's both joy and relief just to see him back running," Wilkes said of McCraken, who emerged from his rough Derby outing with a puncture wound by his left hind ankle. "I know good he is, but he has to go and prove it. I can't go and say it; I can't go and tell everyone how good he is. He has to go and prove it. The other horses have done it, they've won the Derby, the Preakness (Stakes [G1]), and the Belmont (Stakes [G1]. We haven't so we have to prove it."

Wilkes' spirits were lifted early in the Matt Winn as he watched his charge loping along in a relaxed manner as Aquamarine under Florent Geroux carved out fractions of :23.58 and :47.48 with Mo's Mojo sitting about a length off in second. When Aquamarine gave it up in the final quarter and dropped back on the rail, McCraken was clear in the four-wide path and moving with confidence under Hernandez. 

It became a battle for second a handful of strides later as McCraken opened a two-length advantage under left-handed urging and stopped the teletimer in 1:42.84 on a fast track for his fourth win in five career starts at Churchill.

"His last couple races in the Derby and even in the Blue Grass, he left a little on his toes and today he was kind of back to his old self where he got into a nice rhythm around there and wasn't wanting to overdo it in the first part," Hernandez said. "Then he kind of just built his confidence up as he went along and he went on by those horses pretty easily. You always hear it but it really was the perfect race for a horse coming back.

"That was the good thing about this race today is he got confidence back in himself and now we can look forward to the rest of the year."

Out of the Seeking the Gold mare Ivory Empress, McCraken improved his record to five wins from seven starts overall and $472,228 in earnings.

Wilkes was non-committal on where McCraken might start next, citing his usual 'one-day-at-time' mantra. What he saw Saturday confirmed to him that the horse who captured the Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) in then-track record fashion during his seasonal bow hadn't lost his ability to inspire some lofty thoughts.

"I still think he's good, I still think he's one of the best," Wilkes said. "Now I have to let him do it."

Within 20 minutes of McCraken leaving the winner's circle Ghostzapper was represented by his 30th lifetime graded winner when Faypien conquered the Summertime Oaks (G2) at Santa Anita. 

- edited from www.bloodhorse.com

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