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SATURDAY, JULY 4, 2015

Results

NORTH AMERICAN GRADED STAKES RESULTS

BELMONT OAKS INVITATIONAL S. (G1), BEL, $1,000,000, 3YO, F, 1 1/4MT, 7-4.
2—LADY ELI, f, 3, Divine Park--Sacre Coeur, by Saint Ballado. ($160,000 '13 KEESEP; $160,000 2014 KEEAPR). O-Sheep Pond Partners, B-Runnymede Farm Inc & Catesby W Clay (KY), T-Chad C. Brown, J-Irad Ortiz, Jr., $535,000.
4—Itsonlyactingdad, f, 3, Giant's Causeway--Indy Business, by A.P. Indy. ($270,000 '13 FTSAUG). O-Starlight Racing, B-Bluegrass Hall, LLC (KY), $185,000.
10—Outstanding (IRE), f, 3, Galileo (IRE)--Absolutelyfabulous (IRE), by Mozart (IRE). O-Magnier, Mrs John, Tabor, Michael and Smith, Derrick, B-Absolutelyfabulous Syndicate (IRE), $100,000.
Also Ran: Sentiero Italia, Strict Compliance, Consumer Credit, Sharla Rae, Miss Chatelaine, Pine Needles, Spanish Queen, Olorda (GER), Lady Zuzu, Daring Duchess, Gypsy Judy.
Winning Time: 1:59 1/5 (fm)
Margins: 2 3/4, 3/4, NO.
Odds: 0.80, 35.25, 5.60.

Lady Eli sets off fireworks in Belmont Oaks

Trainer Chad Brown: Lady Eli has the "most devastating turn of foot I've ever worked around" (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Going into Saturday's $1 million Belmont Oaks Invitational (G1), the only question about unbeaten Lady Eli (Divine Park) was whether she'd be as lethal over 1 1/4 miles. About 1:59 1/5 later, the only question left was who can beat her from here.

The 4-5 favorite provided her own July 4 fireworks in the brightness of the afternoon, prompting trainer Chad Brown to tell NBCSports that she's the best turf horse he's ever trained. Lady Eli, whose prior Grade 1 tally came in last fall's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, also locked up a spot in another Breeders' Cup event, this time the Filly & Mare Turf (G1), as part of the "Win & You're In" program.

"As we stretch out our turf horses, you wonder if they're going to lose their turn of foot," Brown said. "The term 'breathes different air' gets thrown around a lot when someone has a very good horse, and I've been lucky to have some great turf fillies and mares, but this one 'breathes different air' for sure.

"Not only the ones I've had in my career, but the best horses I have been around, she's way up there, probably at the top of the list," the protege of the late Hall of Famer Bobby Frankel added. "She certainly has the most devastating turn of foot I've ever worked around."

Under confident handling by regular rider Irad Ortiz Jr., Lady Eli was reserved well off the fast early tempo. Lady Zuzu (Dynaformer) sprinted to the fore through an opening quarter in :22 4/5, then rationed out her speed through splits of :47 1/5 and 1:11 3/5 on the firm inner turf. Pine Needles (Giant's Causeway) tracked before taking command on the far turn through a mile in 1:36.

But by that point, most eyes were probably on the blur of the aqua silks of Sheep Pond Partners -- Lady Eli was circling the field. Pine Needles' time in the lead was elapsing with every stride, as Lady Eli was cantering all over them. With Ortiz virtually motionless in the saddle, the superstar simply bolted up by 2 3/4 lengths.

Lady Eli's final time of 1:59 1/5 was considerably faster than Force the Pass (Speightstown) clocked (2:01) in the Belmont Derby (G1) two races earlier. The boys, however, turned in a much slower early pace.

Brown's main concern was whether Lady Eli would get trapped on the inside from post 2, but Ortiz took care of that at the beginning.

"I was feeling a lot better once we got off the first turn and I saw Irad got outside, which is what I wanted to do," Brown said. "I didn't know how he was going to do it with the 2 post, but I figured if the pace was quick enough -- which it was -- there'd be some separation and he could do it. That was our game plan and that was what happened. Once she got outside -- there's never any certainties -- I knew it wouldn't be the trip that got her beat."

"I had a perfect trip, no complaints," Ortiz said. "We talked about the race in the morning, don't get in too much trouble in the race. We expected to have the best horse in the race so that's why we saved ground the first half of the race, but after that, I know nobody noticed us so I just took her out and looked behind and before the half-mile I knew I had a lot of horse. Nobody put pressure on me and she took off."

The real scramble was for the minors, and 35-1 shot Itsonlyactingdad (Giant's Causeway) prevailed over Aidan O'Brien's Outstanding (Galileo) by for best of the rest honors. Sentiero Italia (Medaglia d'Oro) was another nose away in fourth, nipping Lady Eli's stablemates Strict Compliance (Into Mischief) and Consumer Credit (More Than Ready). Pine Needles retreated to ninth, Spanish Queen (Tribal Rule) was 10th, German import Olorda (Lord of England) tired to 11th and Lady Zuzu faded to 12th in the 14-horse field.

Lady Eli clocked a swift 1:59 1/5 compared to the 2:01 turned in by Belmont Derby (G1) winner Force the Pass, who tracked a slower early pace (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
A perfect six-for-six, Lady Eli has bankrolled $1,449,800. The dark bay was nearly beaten by a troubled trip on debut at Saratoga, but she extricated herself and forced her nose in front on the wire. Since then, Lady Eli has mostly enjoyed cakewalks. She took the Miss Grillo (G3) by three lengths, the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies by 2 3/4 lengths, and the April 12 Appalachian (G3) in her reappearance by 2 1/2 lengths. Her prep for this race, the May 31 Wonder Again, proved tactically trickier as she was bottled up in traffic, yet still eased home by a half-length.

Lady Eli could now set her sights on the older turf distaffers.

"We'll have to take a look at (the schedule)," Brown said. "We have the Lake Placid ([G2] on August 14) at Saratoga if we wanted to keep her against straight three-year-old fillies. We also have the Beverly D. ([G1] on August 15 at Arlington) if we want to look at bigger goals and run her against older fillies and mares.

"We could also wait until the Breeders' Cup (to run her against older) because we have the Queen Elizabeth (II Challenge Cup [G1] October 10) right at Keeneland, where the Breeders' Cup is being held.

"Her next major is the Queen Elizabeth. How we get there, we'll have to talk about it."

Kentucky-bred Lady Eli has sold twice at Keeneland, bringing $160,000 as a September yearling and as an April two-year-old in training.

Lady Eli is a total product of the historic Runnymede Farm Inc. and Catesby Clay, for her sire Divine Park and her dam, the winning Sacre Coeur (Saint Ballado), were likewise Runnymede-breds. Lady Eli is a half-sister to Bizzy Caroline (Afleet Alex), a multiple Grade 3 heroine for Clay.

Lady Eli's second dam is famed Runnymede matriarch Kazadancoa (Green Dancer), who produced Grade 2 victress Changing Ways (Time for a Change) (herself the dam of three stakes performers including Grade 2 winner Pays to Dream [High Yield]) as well as Grade 3 scorers Jacodra (Highland Park) and Jacodra's Devil (Devil's Bag).

Kazadancoa is the ancestress of millionaire Tejano Run (Tejano), runner-up in the 1995 Kentucky Derby (G1), Group 1 hero Palace Episode (Machiavellian), Grade/Group 2 winners More Royal (Mt. Livermore) and Laughing Lashes (Mr. Greeley) and Canadian champion Spring in the Air (Spring at Last).

BELMONT DERBY INVITATIONAL S. (G1), BEL, $1,250,000, 3YO, 1 1/4MT, 7-4.
5—FORCE THE PASS, c, 3, Speightstown--Social Queen, by Dynaformer. O-Richard Santulli, B-Colts Neck Stables LLC (KY), T-Alan E. Goldberg, J-Joel Rosario, $670,000.
4—Canndal (FR), c, 3, Medicean (GB)--Clodovina (IRE), by Rock of Gibraltar (IRE). O-HH Aga Khan, B-Haras De SA Aga Khan SCEA (FR), $230,000.
8—Startup Nation, c, 3, Temple City--Pennyrile, by Wagon Limit. ($95,000 '13 FTNAUG). O-Klaravich Stables, Inc and Lawrence, William H, B-Spendthrift Farm (NY), $125,000.
Also Ran: Closing Bell, Takeover Target, Postulation, Divisidero, Granny's Kitten, Bolo.
Winning Time: 2:01 (fm)
Margins: 3 3/4, HF, NO.
Odds: 10.10, 9.50, 13.90.

Force the Pass airs in Belmont Derby

Force the Pass blew the race open turning for home (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Richard Santulli's homebred Force the Pass (Speightstown) delivered a breakout performance at odds of 10-1 in Saturday's $1.25 million Belmont Derby Invitational (G1). Just up in a blanket finish in the May 30 Penn Mile (G3), the Alan Goldberg trainee left no doubt this time, slipping through along the inside on the far turn and opening up by a resounding 3 3/4 lengths over French shipper Canndal (Medicean).

Bolo (Temple City), the 2-1 favorite, uncharacteristically stopped despite getting away with pedestrian fractions of :24 2/5, :50 1/5 and 1:15 1/5 on Belmont's firm inner turf. Jockey Rafael Bejarano wrapped up on him in the stretch, allowing him to coast across the wire last, and he was subsequently vanned off.

Force the Pass was well placed throughout by Joel Rosario, who had him poised in third early, in the slipstream of Bolo. When the favorite drifted enough rounding the far turn to present an opening, Force the Pass seized the opportunity and wasted no time in capitalizing. Shooting clear in a couple of strides after the mile mark in 1:39, he stamped his authority en route to finishing 1 1/4 miles in 2:01. His supporters were rewarded with a $22.20 win payout.

"Good trip, perfect trip," Rosario recapped. "He broke a little slow and then we were covered right away. It looked like we were going to be fourth going into the first turn, but we ended up being second or third. He was getting out a little bit going forward and I just tried to stay near the rail.

"As soon as I got to the three-eighths pole, I got room to go on the inside and just went forward and controlled the race from there."

Canndal, well back early, improved his position down the backstretch and followed Force the Pass's move. Although no match for the winner, the Aga Khan homebred kept on well to take second by a half-length from Startup Nation (Temple City). Closing Bell (Tapit) was just edged in fourth, followed by Takeover Target (Harlan's Holiday), Irish shipper Postulation (Harlan's Holiday), Divisidero (Kitten's Joy), Granny's Kitten (Kitten's Joy) and Bolo.

The post-race bulletin on Bolo was encouraging.

A veterinary examination found "nothing wrong," as Dr. Lisa Fortier of the American Association of Equine Practitioners reported, but Bolo will be re-examined in Sunday morning.

Force the Pass is now a millionaire with $1,030,084 in earnings from a record of 6-4-2-0. Unraced at two, the chestnut has campaigned exclusively on turf so far. He won second time out at Gulfstream Park March 7 and made it two in a row in the non-black-type Cutler Bay over the same course. Force the Pass was a troubled second as the 2-1 favorite in the May 16 James W. Murphy at Pimlico, but overcame a problematic passage last time at Penn, and didn't have a straw in his path here.

"We were hoping for a dirt horse (initially) because he handled everything so well -- very professional," Goldberg said. "We brought him up here three days ago -- he'd never been here before -- and he never turned a hair. We'll give him the summer off and look towards the fall."

Bred by Santulli's Colts Neck Stables in Kentucky, Force the Pass is out of multiple Grade 3 vixen Social Queen (Dynaformer), a relative of $4.7 million-earner Perfect Drift (Dynaformer).

SUBURBAN H. (G2), BEL, $490,000, 4YO/UP, 1 1/4M, 7-4.
5—EFFINEX, c, 4, Mineshaft--What a Pear, by E Dubai. O-Tri-Bone Stables, B-Dr Russell S Cohen (NY), T-James A. Jerkens, J-Junior Alvarado, $275,000.
6—Tonalist, c, 4, Tapit--Settling Mist, by Pleasant Colony. O-Robert S Evans, B-Woodslane Farm (KY), $100,000.
2—Coach Inge, g, 4, Big Brown--Touch too Much, by Holy Bull. ($150,000 2013 OBSMAR). O-Repole Stable, B-Paul Pompa Jr (KY), $60,000.
Also Ran: Neck 'n Neck, Mylute, Street Babe.
Winning Time: 2:01 2/5 (ft)
Margins: HD, 1HF, 11HF.
Odds: 6.80, 0.45, 3.70.

Effinex wins Suburban photo over Tonalist

Effinex (inside) denied heavy favorite Tonalist at the wire in the Suburban (Cecila Gustafson/Horsephotos.com)
Effinex (Mineshaft) proved a legacy winner of the $490,000 Suburban H. (G2) at Belmont Park Saturday, winning a head-bob over 2-5 favorite Tonalist (Tapit) in the historic 1 1/4-mile fixture for older horses.

The four-year-old colt, trained by Jimmy Jerkens for Tri-Bone Stables, followed in the hoof steps of his sire, Mineshaft, who took the Suburban during his 2003 Horse of the Year campaign, and broodmare sire E Dubai, who captured the 2002 Suburban.

The 6-1 third choice in a field of six, Effinex was looking to rebound off an inexplicable showing in the June 6 Brooklyn (G2), where he got out on both turns and was pulled up late.

Allowed to save ground in the early stages as Street Babe (Street Sense) and Coach Inge (Big Brown) dueled through splits of :22 4/5 and :46, Effinex joined Tonalist in making a middle move approaching the three-quarter mark, but had to steady briefly as Street Babe began a retreat in front of him.

Coach Inge passed six furlongs in 1:10 and then increased his lead after a mile in 1:35 as Tonalist, last year's Belmont S. (G1) and Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), initially failed to sustain his early bid. With Street Babe out of the way, Effinex split that pair turning for home and took aim at Coach Inge, who would continue on strongly to the eighth pole.

Inside the final furlong, Brooklyn winner Coach Inge finally began to run out of gas, while Effinex and a resurgent Tonalist took up the chase for the winner's purse. In a tight photo, Effinex proved slightly best in a time of 2:01 2/5 under Junior Alvarado. He returned $15.60.

"Today he wore a Houghton bridle, which gives you more control," Jerkens said. "But I'm sure he would have been fine with the other bridle; he was a different horse today. Maybe the crowd on Belmont day got him all worked up, or he was in a sour frame of mind with the long post parade; that might have had something to do with it. He was as kind as could be today, the whole time.

"During the stretch run, I was just happy he was going to run good. If he got beat by Tonalist, that wasn't going to be a crime. And then when he gutted it out, golly, and Junior got the stick over in his left hand, and that's what made the difference. The horse was in a better frame of mind. We didn't train him quite as hard."

Tonalist, winner of the Westchester (G3) and runner-up in the Metropolitan H. (G1) this term, finished 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Coach Inge, who was 11 1/2 lengths clear of Neck 'n Neck (Flower Alley). Mylute (Midnight Lute) and Street Babe completed the order of finish.

Effinex had a maiden and an allowance win in seven starts for trainer David Smith prior to last year's Saratoga meet, when the colt debuted for Jerkens in the $250,000 Albany. Following a second there and a third in a New York-bred allowance, Effinex turned in a 17-1 upset of the $300,000 Empire Classic when sporting blinkers for the first time.

After concluding his sophomore campaign with fourth-place efforts in the Hawthorne Gold Cup (G2) and $100,000 Alex M. Robb, Effinex kicked off 2015 with back-to-back wins at Aqueduct. His first was a 3 1/2-length score against open allowance company on the inner dirt, and the second was revenge over Hawthorne Gold Cup winner Red Rifle, by three parts of a length, in the 10-furlong Excelsior (G3) on the main track. His record now stands at 16-6-1-2, $782,250.

"I guess we'd look at the Whitney ([G1] on August 8) or the one later on (Woodward [G1] on September 5) but anything can happen," Jerkens said.

Bred by Dr. Russell Cohen, Effinex was reared by the multiple stakes-winning What a Pear (E Dubai). His fourth dam was Broodmare of the Year Best In Show (Traffic Judge).

DWYER S. (G3), BEL, $500,000, 3YO, 1M, 7-4.
6—SPEIGHTSTER, c, 3, Speightstown--Dance Swiftly, by Danzig. O-WinStar Farm LLC, B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY), T-William I. Mott, J-Jose Lezcano, $275,000.
4—Texas Red, c, 3, Afleet Alex--Ramatuelle (CHI), by Jeune Homme. ($17,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Brehm, Erich, Detmar, Wayne, Michaels, Lee, Desormeaux, J Keith et al, B-Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC (KY), $100,000.
3—Tommy Macho, c, 3, Macho Uno--Starstream, by Awesome Again. ($25,000 '13 FTKOCT). O-Pompa, Jr, Paul P and All American Horses LLC, B-John Liviakis (KY), $60,000.
Also Ran: Smart Transition, Blofeld, Hollywood Angel, Bridget's Big Luvy.
Winning Time: 1:35 (ft)
Margins: 2HF, 2HF, 1.
Odds: 2.25, 1.90, 3.50.

Speightster remains unblemished, Texas Red second in Dwyer

Speightster drew off impressively and Bill Mott, who also trains recent Easy Goer winner Japan, has a pair of up-and-coming sophomores at his disposal (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
WinStar Farm LLC's homebred Speightster (Speightstown) continued to win with ease in Saturday's $500,000 Dwyer S. (G3) at Belmont Park, improving his record to three for three with a convincing 2 1/2-length decision in his stakes debut.

The Bill Mott-trained colt broke sharply with jockey Jose Lezcano and after closely tracking the pace in second through fractions of :22 4/5 and :46 1/5, the chestnut surged to the lead leaving the far turn. He faced a brief threat from the rallying Texas Red (Afleet Alex) in midstretch before reasserting control in the latter stages to win going away under the wire.

The late bloomer rolled to a seven-length victory when making his debut at Keeneland April 17 in an about seven-furlong maiden special weight and was exiting a facile 3 1/2-length tally over entry-level allowance foes going 6 1/2 furlongs at Belmont Park on June 5.

He stretched out to a mile with authority in the Dwyer, stopping the teletimer in 1:35, and Speightster paid $6.50 to win as the 2-1 second choice among seven three-year-olds.

Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) winner Texas Red, unraced since a neck second in the February 1 San Vicente (G2) at Santa Anita, turned in a commendable performance returning from a 153-day layoff, finishing 2 1/2 lengths clear of third-placer Tommy Macho (Macho Uno), and is eligible to improve next time after proving no match for Speightster.

Smart Transition (Smart Strike) rallied late for fourth and was followed by Blofeld (Quality Road), pacesetter Hollywood Angel (Circular Quay) and Bridget's Big Luvy (Tiz Wonderful).

Bred in Kentucky, Speightster is out of the unraced and well-bred Dance Swiftly (Danzig), a full sister to U.S. champion and Canadian Horse of the Year Dance Smartly, an earner of more than $3.2 million and a noted producer. Speightster is a half-brother to the stakes-winning filly and Grade 2 runner-up West Coast Swing (Gone West).

Dance Swiftly is out of Canadian champion Classy 'N Smart (Smarten), who along with Dance Smartly is responsible for Grade 1 winner and top sire Smart Strike; Grade 1 victor Full of Wonder; and Grade 2 hero Strike Smartly. All three are by Mr. Prospector.

Dance Smartly is the dam of Canadian champion Dancethruthedawn (Mr. Prospector), Grade 2 scorer Dance with Ravens (A.P. Indy) and Queen's Plate winner Scatter the Gold (Mr. Prospector). This is also the immediate female family of Grade 1 winner Moreno (Ghostzapper), an earner of more than $2.9 million who captured the Charles Town Classic (G2) and finished second in the Santa Anita H. (G1) earlier this season.

With Saturday's $275,000 payday, Speightster has now earned $363,800.

LOS ALAMITOS DERBY (G2), LRC, $350,000, 3YO, 1 1/8M, 7-4.
2—GIMME DA LUTE, c, 3, Midnight Lute--Casino Gold, by Proud Citizen. O-Watson, Karl, Pegram, Michael E and Weitman, Paul, B-Michael E Pegram, Karl Watson & Paul Weitman (CA), T-Bob Baffert, J-Martin Garcia, $210,000.
5—Prospect Park, c, 3, Tapit--Quiet Romance, by Bertrando. O-Wygod, Pam and Martin, B-Pam & Martin Wygod (KY), $70,000.
4—Kentuckian, c, 3, Tiznow--Forest Music, by Unbridled's Song. ($610,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Fox Hill Farms, Inc, B-Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC (KY), $42,000.
Also Ran: Follow Me Crev, Pain and Misery.
Winning Time: 1:47 (ft)
Margins: NO, 7 3/4, 3/4.
Odds: 3.30, 3.70, 0.40.

Gimme Da Lute hits winning note in Los Alamitos Derby

Gimma Da Lute (inside) denied Prospect Park in Saturday's Los Alamitos Derby (Benoit Photos)
Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman's homebred Gimme Da Lute (Midnight Lute) fought off a determined Prospect Park (Tapit) to take Saturday's $350,000 Los Alamitos Derby (G2) by a nose on the wire for trainer Bob Baffert.

The bay colt broke on top with 2-5 favorite Kentuckian (Tiznow), ran with that one entering the first turn, but eventually settled into a stalking position just off his flank. Jockey Martin Garcia guided Gimme Da Lute as Kentuckian set splits of :23 1/5, :46 3/5 and 1:10 on the backstretch. The duo ranged up closer to the pacesetter entering the final turn and had taken command by the time they hit the lane.

By this point Prospect Park, who bided his time in the second flight behind the front runners, began his move and challenged Gimme Da Lute. The pair duked it out all the way to the finish line, with Gimme Da Lute just getting the head-bobbing win in a final time of 1:47.09 for 1 1/8 miles over the fast Los Alamitos dirt.

The time was just .08 seconds off the 1:47.01 track record set by Shared Belief (Candy Ride) in last year's running of this same race.

Gimme Da Lute paid $8.60 as the 3-1 second choice. It was another 7 3/4 lengths behind Prospect Park to Kentuckian, with Follow Me Crev (Quality Road) and Pain and Misery (Bob and John) bringing up the rear.

Gimme Da Lute earned his second straight graded score in the Los Alamitos Derby, having triumphed in the Affirmed S. (G3) at Santa Anita Park on June 7. The bay colt, who began his career on January 31 with a close nose second at Santa Anita, scored by 5 1/4 lengths while making his stakes bow in the Echo Eddie S. two races later and followed that up with thirds in the Pat Day Mile (G3) and Chick Lang S. at Churchill Downs and Pimlico, respectively.

The California-bred improved his career line to 4-1-2 from seven lifetime starts and nearly doubled his bankroll to $457,560 with Saturday's score.

Gimme Da Lute is the first registered winner out of Casino Gold (Proud Citizen) and comes from the same female family as Group 2-placed Albertine (Irish River), dam of 1993 Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) upsetter Arcangues (Sagace) as well as the ancestress of numerous Grade/Group 1 winners and classic-scoring runners.

BELMONT SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP S. (G3), BEL, $384,000, 3YO/UP, 7F, 7-4.
3—PRIVATE ZONE, g, 6, Macho Uno--Auburn Beauty, by Siphon (BRZ). ($15,000 '10 KEESEP). O-Good Friends Stable, LLC, B-Adena Springs (ON), T-Jorge Navarro, J-Martin A. Pedroza, $220,000.
5—Clearly Now, h, 5, Horse Greeley--Bend, by Arch. ($30,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Up Hill Stable, B-Claiborne Farm (KY), $80,000.
6—Stallwalkin' Dude, g, 5, City Place--Chelle Spendabuck, by Dare and Go. O-David Jacobson, B-Maria M Haire (FL), $48,000.
Also Ran: Green Gratto, C. Zee.
Winning Time: 1:22 2/5 (ft)
Margins: 3 1/4, 2 1/4, 4 3/4.
Odds: 0.35, 3.80, 7.00.

Private Zone much the best in Belmont Sprint Championship

Private Zone was never seriously asked (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Good Friends Stable LLC's Private Zone (Macho Uno) broke on top and dominated the rest of the way in Saturday's $384,000 Belmont Sprint Championship (G3), scoring comfortably by a 3 1/4-length margin. The six-year-old was favored at 1-5 over four rivals and completed seven furlongs in 1:22 2/5 with regular rider Martin Pedroza.

Trained by Jorge Navarro, Private Zone is now three for four at Belmont, winning the last two editions of the Vosburgh (G1), and he also captured the 2014 Cigar Mile H. (G1) at Aqueduct. The bay gelding was exiting a respectable third in the Metropolitan H. (G1) on the June 6 Belmont Stakes undercard.

Cutting back to a more favorable sprint distance, Private Zone performed at a different level from his foes. He cruised through an opening quarter-mile in :22 2/5 on a short lead before reaching the half-mile in :44 3/5 with a 3 1/2-length cushion. After six furlongs in 1:09, the dynamic front-runner was under wraps the rest of the way.

With the $220,000 payday, the Ontario-bred has now earned $2,233,120 from a 29-9-8-3 record.

Clearly Now (Horse Greeley), who established a new track record winning the 2013 Belmont Sprint Championship, rallied belatedly for second, 2 1/4 lengths better than third-placer Stallwalkin' Dude (City Place). Green Gratto (Here's Zealous) and C. Zee (Elusive Bird) rounded out the finish, with The Big Beast (Yes It's True), Bay of Plenty (Medaglia d'Oro) and Moonlight Song (Unbridled's Song) all being scratched.

Bred by Adena Springs, Private Zone sold for $15,000 as a 2010 Keeneland September yearling and is now owned by a partnership that includes former jockey Rene Douglas. He's out of the unraced Siphon mare Auburn Beauty and hails from the female family of U.S. turf champion Chief Bearhart (Chief's Crown).

After starting his racing career in Panama, Private Zone made his U.S. debut at Del Mar in 2012. The accomplished sprinter notched his eighth career stakes victory on Saturday and has placed in a number of important events, including a third in the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) last fall. He was previously trained by Alfredo Velazquez and Doug O'Neill.

VICTORY RIDE S. (G3), BEL, $147,000, 3YO, F, 6 1/2F, 7-4.
5—IRISH JASPER, f, 3, First Defence--Irish Connection, by Mr. Greeley. ($12,000 '13 FTKOCT). O-Derek S Ryan, B-Mr & Mrs Robert E Courtney Sr (KY), T-Derek S. Ryan, J-Javier Castellano, $87,000.
2—Enchanting Lady, f, 3, Tale of the Cat--A. P. Baby, by A.P. Indy. ($90,000 '13 KEESEP; $650,000 2014 OBSMAR). O-Kaleem Shah, Inc, B-Randal Family Trust, R David & Maryl Randal Trustees (KY), $30,000.
4—Kathballu, f, 3, Bluegrass Cat--Abba Gold, by Devil's Bag. O-Five D Thoroughbreds, B-Five-D Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY), $15,000.
Also Ran: Miss Ella, Promise Me Silver, Super Saks.
Winning Time: 1:16 3/5 (ft)
Margins: 3, 2 3/4, HD.
Odds: 4.90, 1.15, 11.00.

Irish Jasper scores in Victory Ride

Irish Jasper pulled away to record her third straight stakes win in the Victory Ride (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Trainer Derek Ryan's Irish Jasper (First Defence) ran her current win streak to three straight when taking Saturday's $147,000 Victory Ride S. (G3) at Belmont Park by three lengths. Jockey Javier Castellano guided the sophomore miss, who easily held the late-charging, even-money favorite Enchanting Lady (Tale of the Cat) to finish 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:16 3/5 on the fast main track.

Super Saks (Sky Mesa) set the pace through splits of :22 and :45 3/5 while tracked by Kathballu (Bluegrass Cat) to her outside and Promise Me Silver (Silver City) just behind on the rail. Irish Jasper, meanwhile, was running in the back of the pack before making her move nearing the turn.

The dark bay miss swung widest of all heading into the turn and circled the entire field. She easily took over in the lane and extended her margin with every step. Enchanting Lady, who had fallen to last around the turn, suddenly kicked into gear and was coming fast down the center of the track, but ran out of room late as Irish Jasper proved best.

"Today we were very fortunate," Castellano said. "She broke well out of the gate and put me in a good spot. There was a lot of speed in the race. I learned from the first time I rode her and it paid off today. Phenomenal filly."

Ryan indicated that Irish Jasper is now headed to the $500,000 Test S. (G1) going seven furlongs at Saratoga on August 8.

"I bought her off a friend of mine last year in Ocala, and it worked out great," he stated. "I think she's the best three-year-old filly in the country.

"The seven-eighths is going to be perfect for the Test; that's the next big thing for her. We'll see where we are after that.

Sent off the near 5-1 fourth choice in the six-horse field, Irish Jasper paid $11.80 for the win. Enchanting Lady had 2 3/4 lengths to spare on Kathballu, who just got her head in front of Miss Ella (Exchange Rate) for third. Promise Me Silver, who appeared to nearly run up on Super Saks' heels at one point, finished fifth, just up on that early pacesetter.

Irish Jasper is now three-for-three since Ryan took the blinkers off for the April 26 Belle Harbor S. at Aqueduct. The three-year-old filly took the Miss Preakness S. (G3) next out in her most recent start, and also boasts a win from last year's Gasparilla S. Her resume now stands at 9-6-0-1 and she's banked $312,800 lifetime.

Bred in Kentucky by Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Courteny Sr., Irish Jasper sold for $12,000 as a Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Fall yearling. She is the first registered stakes winner out of Irish Connection (Mr. Greeley), who is a half-sister to a pair of stakes-place winners in Dicey Girl (Yonaguska) and Gallows (Red Ransom).

Irish Jasper's third dam is Grade 2-placed stakes heroine Now Dance (Sovereign Dancer), who produced stakes scorers Touchdown (Pleasant Tap), Timetobewild (Time for a Change) and Danceroftherealm (King of Kings).

Irish Jasper's fifth dam is Argentinean champion Taba (Table Play), who is probably best known for foaling 1986 champion older horse Turkoman (Alydar).

DR. JAMES PENNY MEMORIAL H. (G3), PRX, $200,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1 1/16MT, 7-4.
7—COFFEE CLIQUE, m, 5, Medaglia d'Oro--Miss Chapin, by Royal Academy. O-Amerman Racing LLC, B-Mrs Jerry Amerman (KY), T-Brian A. Lynch, J-Manuel Franco, $120,000.
8—Testa Rossi (FR), f, 4, Dr Fong--Peggy Lane (FR), by Dancing Spree. O-Coleman, Thomas, Doheny Racing Stable and Head of Plains Partners LLC, B-Barbara Moser (FR), $40,000.
3—Pink Poppy, f, 4, Tiznow--Boa, by Rahy. O-Arindel, B-Arindel Farm LLC (FL), $22,000.
Also Ran: Nellie Cashman, Means Well, Baffle Me, Giant Shadow, Distorted Beauty, Sassy Little Cat.
Winning Time: 1:42 3/5 (fm)
Margins: 1 1/4, NK, 1HF.
Odds: 0.70, 3.60, 29.00.

Coffee Clique perks up in Dr. James Penny Memorial

Grade 1 heroine Coffee Clique outclassed her eight rivals in Philadelphia (Barb Weidl/Equi-Photo)
Coffee Clique (Medaglia d'Oro) ended a three-race losing skid in fine style Saturday when taking the $200,000 Dr. James Penny Memorial H. (G3) at Parx Racing under Manny Franco.

Kept wide but no more than 2 1/2 lengths from longshot pacesetter Sassy Little Cat (Albert the Great), who carved out fractions of :23 3/5, :48 2/5 and 1:12 3/5, Coffee Clique moved into contention around the far turn, joining 29-1 chance Pink Poppy (Tiznow). Edging clear of that one passing the eighth pole, the five-year-old mare drew off to win by 1 1/4 lengths in a time of 1:42 3/5 for 1 1/16 miles on a firm turf.

A homebred owned by Amerman Racing, and trained by Brian Lynch, Coffee Clique returned $3.40 as the 7-10 favorite.

Testa Rossi (Dr Fong), the second choice in a field of nine fillies and mares, rallied to edge Pink Poppy for second by a neck. Finishing behind Pink Poppy were Nellie Cashman (Mineshaft), Means Well (Smart Strike), Baffle Me (First Samurai), Giant Shadow (Giant's Causeway), Distorted Beauty (Invasor), and Sassy Little Cat. Photo Call (Galileo) was scratched after competing in Friday's $100,000 Perfect Sting at Belmont Park.

This was the fourth graded stakes win for Coffee Clique, who captured the 2013 Selene (Can-G3) at Woodbine as a three-year-old and added last year's Churchill Distaff Turf Mile (G2) and Just a Game (G1) at Belmont Park.

Out of action more than nine months following the latter event, she returned March 28 to finish third in the Honey Fox (G2) at Gulfstream, and then was second and sixth, respectively, when defending her titles in the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile and Just a Game. Her record now stands at 15-7-2-2, $1,041,488.

Bred in Kentucky, Coffee Clique was reared by Miss Chapin (Royal Academy), who is also the dam of Grade 2-placed Royal Fury (Langfuhr) and the stakes-placed Schoolofhardrocks (Rock Hard Ten).

Graded Recaps

Lady Eli sets off fireworks in Belmont Oaks

Trainer Chad Brown: Lady Eli has the "most devastating turn of foot I've ever worked around" (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Going into Saturday's $1 million Belmont Oaks Invitational (G1), the only question about unbeaten Lady Eli (Divine Park) was whether she'd be as lethal over 1 1/4 miles. About 1:59 1/5 later, the only question left was who can beat her from here.

The 4-5 favorite provided her own July 4 fireworks in the brightness of the afternoon, prompting trainer Chad Brown to tell NBCSports that she's the best turf horse he's ever trained. Lady Eli, whose prior Grade 1 tally came in last fall's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, also locked up a spot in another Breeders' Cup event, this time the Filly & Mare Turf (G1), as part of the "Win & You're In" program.

"As we stretch out our turf horses, you wonder if they're going to lose their turn of foot," Brown said. "The term 'breathes different air' gets thrown around a lot when someone has a very good horse, and I've been lucky to have some great turf fillies and mares, but this one 'breathes different air' for sure.

"Not only the ones I've had in my career, but the best horses I have been around, she's way up there, probably at the top of the list," the protege of the late Hall of Famer Bobby Frankel added. "She certainly has the most devastating turn of foot I've ever worked around."

Under confident handling by regular rider Irad Ortiz Jr., Lady Eli was reserved well off the fast early tempo. Lady Zuzu (Dynaformer) sprinted to the fore through an opening quarter in :22 4/5, then rationed out her speed through splits of :47 1/5 and 1:11 3/5 on the firm inner turf. Pine Needles (Giant's Causeway) tracked before taking command on the far turn through a mile in 1:36.

But by that point, most eyes were probably on the blur of the aqua silks of Sheep Pond Partners -- Lady Eli was circling the field. Pine Needles' time in the lead was elapsing with every stride, as Lady Eli was cantering all over them. With Ortiz virtually motionless in the saddle, the superstar simply bolted up by 2 3/4 lengths.

Lady Eli's final time of 1:59 1/5 was considerably faster than Force the Pass (Speightstown) clocked (2:01) in the Belmont Derby (G1) two races earlier. The boys, however, turned in a much slower early pace.

Brown's main concern was whether Lady Eli would get trapped on the inside from post 2, but Ortiz took care of that at the beginning.

"I was feeling a lot better once we got off the first turn and I saw Irad got outside, which is what I wanted to do," Brown said. "I didn't know how he was going to do it with the 2 post, but I figured if the pace was quick enough -- which it was -- there'd be some separation and he could do it. That was our game plan and that was what happened. Once she got outside -- there's never any certainties -- I knew it wouldn't be the trip that got her beat."

"I had a perfect trip, no complaints," Ortiz said. "We talked about the race in the morning, don't get in too much trouble in the race. We expected to have the best horse in the race so that's why we saved ground the first half of the race, but after that, I know nobody noticed us so I just took her out and looked behind and before the half-mile I knew I had a lot of horse. Nobody put pressure on me and she took off."

The real scramble was for the minors, and 35-1 shot Itsonlyactingdad (Giant's Causeway) prevailed over Aidan O'Brien's Outstanding (Galileo) by for best of the rest honors. Sentiero Italia (Medaglia d'Oro) was another nose away in fourth, nipping Lady Eli's stablemates Strict Compliance (Into Mischief) and Consumer Credit (More Than Ready). Pine Needles retreated to ninth, Spanish Queen (Tribal Rule) was 10th, German import Olorda (Lord of England) tired to 11th and Lady Zuzu faded to 12th in the 14-horse field.

Lady Eli clocked a swift 1:59 1/5 compared to the 2:01 turned in by Belmont Derby (G1) winner Force the Pass, who tracked a slower early pace (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
A perfect six-for-six, Lady Eli has bankrolled $1,449,800. The dark bay was nearly beaten by a troubled trip on debut at Saratoga, but she extricated herself and forced her nose in front on the wire. Since then, Lady Eli has mostly enjoyed cakewalks. She took the Miss Grillo (G3) by three lengths, the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies by 2 3/4 lengths, and the April 12 Appalachian (G3) in her reappearance by 2 1/2 lengths. Her prep for this race, the May 31 Wonder Again, proved tactically trickier as she was bottled up in traffic, yet still eased home by a half-length.

Lady Eli could now set her sights on the older turf distaffers.

"We'll have to take a look at (the schedule)," Brown said. "We have the Lake Placid ([G2] on August 14) at Saratoga if we wanted to keep her against straight three-year-old fillies. We also have the Beverly D. ([G1] on August 15 at Arlington) if we want to look at bigger goals and run her against older fillies and mares.

"We could also wait until the Breeders' Cup (to run her against older) because we have the Queen Elizabeth (II Challenge Cup [G1] October 10) right at Keeneland, where the Breeders' Cup is being held.

"Her next major is the Queen Elizabeth. How we get there, we'll have to talk about it."

Kentucky-bred Lady Eli has sold twice at Keeneland, bringing $160,000 as a September yearling and as an April two-year-old in training.

Lady Eli is a total product of the historic Runnymede Farm Inc. and Catesby Clay, for her sire Divine Park and her dam, the winning Sacre Coeur (Saint Ballado), were likewise Runnymede-breds. Lady Eli is a half-sister to Bizzy Caroline (Afleet Alex), a multiple Grade 3 heroine for Clay.

Lady Eli's second dam is famed Runnymede matriarch Kazadancoa (Green Dancer), who produced Grade 2 victress Changing Ways (Time for a Change) (herself the dam of three stakes performers including Grade 2 winner Pays to Dream [High Yield]) as well as Grade 3 scorers Jacodra (Highland Park) and Jacodra's Devil (Devil's Bag).

Kazadancoa is the ancestress of millionaire Tejano Run (Tejano), runner-up in the 1995 Kentucky Derby (G1), Group 1 hero Palace Episode (Machiavellian), Grade/Group 2 winners More Royal (Mt. Livermore) and Laughing Lashes (Mr. Greeley) and Canadian champion Spring in the Air (Spring at Last).

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Force the Pass airs in Belmont Derby

Force the Pass blew the race open turning for home (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Richard Santulli's homebred Force the Pass (Speightstown) delivered a breakout performance at odds of 10-1 in Saturday's $1.25 million Belmont Derby Invitational (G1). Just up in a blanket finish in the May 30 Penn Mile (G3), the Alan Goldberg trainee left no doubt this time, slipping through along the inside on the far turn and opening up by a resounding 3 3/4 lengths over French shipper Canndal (Medicean).

Bolo (Temple City), the 2-1 favorite, uncharacteristically stopped despite getting away with pedestrian fractions of :24 2/5, :50 1/5 and 1:15 1/5 on Belmont's firm inner turf. Jockey Rafael Bejarano wrapped up on him in the stretch, allowing him to coast across the wire last, and he was subsequently vanned off.

Force the Pass was well placed throughout by Joel Rosario, who had him poised in third early, in the slipstream of Bolo. When the favorite drifted enough rounding the far turn to present an opening, Force the Pass seized the opportunity and wasted no time in capitalizing. Shooting clear in a couple of strides after the mile mark in 1:39, he stamped his authority en route to finishing 1 1/4 miles in 2:01. His supporters were rewarded with a $22.20 win payout.

"Good trip, perfect trip," Rosario recapped. "He broke a little slow and then we were covered right away. It looked like we were going to be fourth going into the first turn, but we ended up being second or third. He was getting out a little bit going forward and I just tried to stay near the rail.

"As soon as I got to the three-eighths pole, I got room to go on the inside and just went forward and controlled the race from there."

Canndal, well back early, improved his position down the backstretch and followed Force the Pass's move. Although no match for the winner, the Aga Khan homebred kept on well to take second by a half-length from Startup Nation (Temple City). Closing Bell (Tapit) was just edged in fourth, followed by Takeover Target (Harlan's Holiday), Irish shipper Postulation (Harlan's Holiday), Divisidero (Kitten's Joy), Granny's Kitten (Kitten's Joy) and Bolo.

The post-race bulletin on Bolo was encouraging.

A veterinary examination found "nothing wrong," as Dr. Lisa Fortier of the American Association of Equine Practitioners reported, but Bolo will be re-examined in Sunday morning.

Force the Pass is now a millionaire with $1,030,084 in earnings from a record of 6-4-2-0. Unraced at two, the chestnut has campaigned exclusively on turf so far. He won second time out at Gulfstream Park March 7 and made it two in a row in the non-black-type Cutler Bay over the same course. Force the Pass was a troubled second as the 2-1 favorite in the May 16 James W. Murphy at Pimlico, but overcame a problematic passage last time at Penn, and didn't have a straw in his path here.

"We were hoping for a dirt horse (initially) because he handled everything so well -- very professional," Goldberg said. "We brought him up here three days ago -- he'd never been here before -- and he never turned a hair. We'll give him the summer off and look towards the fall."

Bred by Santulli's Colts Neck Stables in Kentucky, Force the Pass is out of multiple Grade 3 vixen Social Queen (Dynaformer), a relative of $4.7 million-earner Perfect Drift (Dynaformer).

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Racing Headlines

Golden Horn turns back The Grey Gatsby in Eclipse

Peerless in the Dante S. (Eng-G2) at York May 14 and Epsom Derby (Eng-G1) June 6, Anthony Oppenheimer's Golden Horn (Cape Cross) had to fight harder taking on the older horses for the first time in Saturday's Eclipse S. (Eng-G1) at Sandown, but showed another side of his character to come out firmly on top again.

Sent to the front from the outset as Frankie Dettori sought to avoid any tactical nuances, the 4-9 favorite was hassled from the top of the home stretch by chief rival The Grey Gatsby (Mastercraftsman) and may have been briefly headed by that four-year-old before the quarter pole. Stirred when the whip was drawn shortly after, he pulled steadily clear in the final furlong to record an ultimately authoritative 3 1/2-length triumph.

"Jamie (Spencer) was very clever attacking me early, but when he was eyeballed he showed what a champion he is," Dettori said. "He knuckled down and showed a lot of guts. He had been working brilliantly and we were the Derby winner getting the weight allowance, so I didn't want to risk not making the running. We thought he was the best horse and so wanted to prove it by doing it the hard way."

His owner-breeder added of the unbeaten bay, who is bound for the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth S. (Eng-G1) at Ascot in three weeks' time if he pleases in the interim.

"Frankie says we haven't got to the bottom of him yet, which is very exciting but the horse and John Gosden will tell us where to go next," he said. "He didn't seem to have too hard a race, but we don't know how much it's taken out of him."

In the late 1980s, the Eclipse was in its heyday and proved the natural port of call for the best of the classic brigade with Dancing Brave and Nashwan succeeding in enhancing their exalted reputations and Reference Point just failing to overcome the rock-hard Mtoto. All three of those went on to King George glory later that month and connections of Golden Horn will be hoping that he can emulate Nashwan in bringing off the treble this summer now that he has taken the first two tests in his stride.

Delivered from behind in the Dante and Derby, the dark bay faced a different pace scenario in this first major clash of the generations with just four older rivals looking to overcome a sizeable weight-for-age disadvantage and their riders understandably reluctant to set the race up for the sophomore. Unperturbed by this potential quandary, Dettori sent Golden Horn to the lead after half-missing the kick where he was tracked closely by The Grey Gatsby.

Knowing how much last year's Prix du Jockey Club (Fr-G1) and Irish Champion S. (Ire-G1) winner likes a tussle, Jamie Spencer asked the four-year-old to pull some early punches after the home turn and for about a furlong it looked as if he might have his younger rival's measure. Still relatively inexperienced despite his high-profile achievements, the Oppenheimer homebred needed a slap with the whip to assert his influence and from the furlong pole his late-race power came into play once again as he drew away for a decisive score.

"It kind of took him by surprise, because he's never been in front and he had every chance to give in late on but he put some daylight between them at the end," Dettori said. "He's a very laid-back horse and you have to be aggressive with him, but in all his works and the races I've ridden him in he never finishes tired. He must have a remarkable physique, as he hits the line running every time and I think he's still got something left. He's a remarkable horse and is up there with the very best I've ridden."

Golden Horn's latest exploits extended the annus mirabilis for trainer John Gosden and he paid tribute to the winner and the race as a spectacle.

"I think the moment the draw came out, we knew we had to go forward and although we hoped someone else would go on, they didn't. What a lovely race it was, with The Grey Gatsby right there all the way and a top three-year-old and a top older horse in a clean, hard race. It was a real ding-dong battle and then in the last furlong he's asserted properly and strongly and has found three lengths. He's a very high-class horse. He's won his Derby, he's come here and won the Eclipse and I've got enormous respect for the second and personally I thought it was a purist's race and a great race."

Gosden was keen to focus on the short-term targets only at present, with a tilt at the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-G1) at Longchamp October 4 in the balance.

"If he's in tremendous form, of course the King George would be wonderful to run in and the horse will tell me. That's my job and I have to watch and feel and see how he is. If we decide it's a dance too far, then he won't go to Ascot as we always do what's right by them. He's not in the Arc, so he'd have to be supplemented but I think he'd be an Arc horse unless it went bottomless."

The Grey Gatsby was coming off second best again as he had in Royal Ascot's Prince of Wales's S. (Eng-G1) June 17, but trainer Kevin Ryan was far from downcast.

"It was a great race, which the race deserves to be and I think we've seen two very exceptional and brave horses. For him to concede the weight he has done, he must be exceptional too. I thought two down we had him, but he is a very tough horse and there were no hard-luck stories. Both jockeys rode great races and we're very proud of our horse.

"I think now we'll just wait for the (August 19) Juddmonte International (Eng-G1)  -- I'd love to take him back to York, our home track and it gives us about six weeks, which I think he deserves now."

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Graded Recaps

Effinex wins Suburban photo over Tonalist

Effinex (inside) denied heavy favorite Tonalist at the wire in the Suburban (Cecila Gustafson/Horsephotos.com)
Effinex (Mineshaft) proved a legacy winner of the $490,000 Suburban H. (G2) at Belmont Park Saturday, winning a head-bob over 2-5 favorite Tonalist (Tapit) in the historic 1 1/4-mile fixture for older horses.

The four-year-old colt, trained by Jimmy Jerkens for Tri-Bone Stables, followed in the hoof steps of his sire, Mineshaft, who took the Suburban during his 2003 Horse of the Year campaign, and broodmare sire E Dubai, who captured the 2002 Suburban.

The 6-1 third choice in a field of six, Effinex was looking to rebound off an inexplicable showing in the June 6 Brooklyn (G2), where he got out on both turns and was pulled up late.

Allowed to save ground in the early stages as Street Babe (Street Sense) and Coach Inge (Big Brown) dueled through splits of :22 4/5 and :46, Effinex joined Tonalist in making a middle move approaching the three-quarter mark, but had to steady briefly as Street Babe began a retreat in front of him.

Coach Inge passed six furlongs in 1:10 and then increased his lead after a mile in 1:35 as Tonalist, last year's Belmont S. (G1) and Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), initially failed to sustain his early bid. With Street Babe out of the way, Effinex split that pair turning for home and took aim at Coach Inge, who would continue on strongly to the eighth pole.

Inside the final furlong, Brooklyn winner Coach Inge finally began to run out of gas, while Effinex and a resurgent Tonalist took up the chase for the winner's purse. In a tight photo, Effinex proved slightly best in a time of 2:01 2/5 under Junior Alvarado. He returned $15.60.

"Today he wore a Houghton bridle, which gives you more control," Jerkens said. "But I'm sure he would have been fine with the other bridle; he was a different horse today. Maybe the crowd on Belmont day got him all worked up, or he was in a sour frame of mind with the long post parade; that might have had something to do with it. He was as kind as could be today, the whole time.

"During the stretch run, I was just happy he was going to run good. If he got beat by Tonalist, that wasn't going to be a crime. And then when he gutted it out, golly, and Junior got the stick over in his left hand, and that's what made the difference. The horse was in a better frame of mind. We didn't train him quite as hard."

Tonalist, winner of the Westchester (G3) and runner-up in the Metropolitan H. (G1) this term, finished 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Coach Inge, who was 11 1/2 lengths clear of Neck 'n Neck (Flower Alley). Mylute (Midnight Lute) and Street Babe completed the order of finish.

Effinex had a maiden and an allowance win in seven starts for trainer David Smith prior to last year's Saratoga meet, when the colt debuted for Jerkens in the $250,000 Albany. Following a second there and a third in a New York-bred allowance, Effinex turned in a 17-1 upset of the $300,000 Empire Classic when sporting blinkers for the first time.

After concluding his sophomore campaign with fourth-place efforts in the Hawthorne Gold Cup (G2) and $100,000 Alex M. Robb, Effinex kicked off 2015 with back-to-back wins at Aqueduct. His first was a 3 1/2-length score against open allowance company on the inner dirt, and the second was revenge over Hawthorne Gold Cup winner Red Rifle, by three parts of a length, in the 10-furlong Excelsior (G3) on the main track. His record now stands at 16-6-1-2, $782,250.

"I guess we'd look at the Whitney ([G1] on August 8) or the one later on (Woodward [G1] on September 5) but anything can happen," Jerkens said.

Bred by Dr. Russell Cohen, Effinex was reared by the multiple stakes-winning What a Pear (E Dubai). His fourth dam was Broodmare of the Year Best In Show (Traffic Judge).

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Racing Headlines

Power King survives inquiry to take Durban July

In what seemed like a flashback to this day last year, when Wylie Hall (Redoute's Choice) was disqualified from the win in the Durban July (SAf-G1) after interfering with Legislate (Dynasty) in the lane, Power King (Silvano) had to survive an inquiry.

This time, however, the fortunes played in the favor of the first-past-the-post in South Africa's richest race.

Sneaking into the July with the co-lowest weight in the field and largely dismissed by punters, Power King traveled midpack and off the fence through the opening stages of the 2200 meter event. Behind a wall of horses before the field fanned across the track at the top of the lane, Power King drifted toward the outside, hooking up with Puntas Arenas (Silvano) to his outside passing the 150 meter mark. The winner held that rival at bay to the line and was permitted to keep the race after examination by stewards.

Power King was tried in top-class company during his sophomore campaign, but after off-the-board finishes in the Cape Guineas (SAf-G1) and Cape Derby (SAf-G1) he was dropped back in class, and enjoyed two confidence-boosting scores at the Group 3 level last May. He filled the bridesmaid's role in his next five outings, finishing second or third on each occasion, before faltering to seventh behind Futura (Dynasty) when trying Group 1 company again in the prestigious J&B Met on January 31.

Second in the non-black type Cape Mile on February 21, he at last found the winner's circle again in Scottsville's Pinnacle S. on March 29, and was second in the Betting World 1900 (SAf-G3) in the lead-up to this.

Power King led home a remarkable trifecta Saturday for his champion sire Silvano -- who stands at Andreas Jacobs's Maine Chance Farms, which also bred the top three finishers -- in the Western Cape.

One race following the Durban July in the Garden Province S. (SAf-G1), Same Jurisdiction (Mambo in Seattle) saved ground early near the back of the pack, charged up the inside in the lane and won under mostly hand-urging from a fast-finishing Smart Call (Ideal World).

This time last year, Same Jurisdiction was in the midst of a four-race win streak that saw her prove herself at the highest level in the Thekwini S. (SAf-G1) over Saturday's track-and-trip. She opened her sophomore campaign with a win again over this course and distance on January 2, but had her streak snapped February 28 when fifth in the Gauteng Fillies Guineas (SAf-G2) in her first start outside Durban.

Second in Turffontein's S A Fillies Guineas when stepped up to 1800 meters, Same Jurisdiction was second back here in the 1400 meter Tibouchina S. (SAf-G2) on June 6.

Seventh Plain, winner of the May 23 Gold Medallion S. (SAf-G1) and Godolphin Barb S. (SAf-G3) prior to that, cemented his status atop his division with a last-gasp victory in the Golden Horseshoe (SAf-G1) while also providing trainer Dennis Drier with the juvenile Group 1 double.

Fastest from the gates, Seventh Plain crossed over to save ground on the short run into the first bend and stalked the pace about two lengths off the lead. The dark bay briefly appeared to have too much to do to catch the free-wheeling frontrunner Arabian Beat (Black Minnaloushe) in early stretch, but he capitalized as that rival began to tire in the final 50 meters, getting up to score by a narrow margin.

Seventh Plain has now won three straight and four of five overall, his lone loss coming in the listed Summer Juvenile S. at Kenilworth on January 31.

Chestnuts N Pearls (Horse Chestnut) began Drier's juvenile double in the Golden Slipper (SAf-G1). Traveling a bit keenly in about fourth in the early part of the race, the bay miss hit the lead near the stand's side rail at the 150 meter mark and drew away to win cozily.

Chestnuts N Pearls was a first-out winner going six furlongs at Scottsvile on April 5, but dropped back to eighth when stepped up in class for the Allan Robertson Championship (SAf-G1) over the same track and trip on May 23 before stretching out an extra panel in the Golden Slipper.

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Euro Charline passes gate test, on track for Falmouth

Last year's Beverly D. S. (G1) winner Euro Charline (Myboycharlie), scratched behind the gates after failing to load for the Duke of Cambridge S. (Eng-G2) at Royal Ascot, has passed a gate test and is on track for the July 10 Falmouth S. (Eng-G1) at Newmarket.

"What happened at Royal Ascot came completely out of the blue as, apart from on her two-year-old debut, she has never had an issue (with the stalls)," trainer Marco Botti explained. "So she was forced to miss a race that we had been aiming at for a long time, but it might end up working to our advantage as she will go to the Falmouth as a fresh horse.

"It has been a bit of a rush to get her a stalls test, as you usually have to wait for two weeks, but she did one last week and walked straight in, without a blindfold or any help, and I hope that she will be just the same on Friday."

The four-year-old Euro Charline will be making her first public appearance since a fourth in the March 28 Dubai Turf (UAE-G1) at Meydan, which was her first outing since the Beverly D. last August.

"I thought that she ran really well in Dubai considering that it was not the plan to make the running -- she just broke too well and ended up getting a bit lit up," Botti said of the Team Valor colorbearer. "With some cover she would have finished much closer."

Those still in the mix for the Falmouth include Duke of Cambridge winner Amazing Maria (Mastercraftsman); last year's dual French classic winner Avenir Certain (Le Havre); Group 2-winning and classic-placed Lucida (Shamardal); and Group 2 scorer Fintry (Shamardal).

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Graded Recaps

Speightster remains unblemished, Texas Red second in Dwyer

Speightster drew off impressively and Bill Mott, who also trains recent Easy Goer winner Japan, has a pair of up-and-coming sophomores at his disposal (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
WinStar Farm LLC's homebred Speightster (Speightstown) continued to win with ease in Saturday's $500,000 Dwyer S. (G3) at Belmont Park, improving his record to three for three with a convincing 2 1/2-length decision in his stakes debut.

The Bill Mott-trained colt broke sharply with jockey Jose Lezcano and after closely tracking the pace in second through fractions of :22 4/5 and :46 1/5, the chestnut surged to the lead leaving the far turn. He faced a brief threat from the rallying Texas Red (Afleet Alex) in midstretch before reasserting control in the latter stages to win going away under the wire.

The late bloomer rolled to a seven-length victory when making his debut at Keeneland April 17 in an about seven-furlong maiden special weight and was exiting a facile 3 1/2-length tally over entry-level allowance foes going 6 1/2 furlongs at Belmont Park on June 5.

He stretched out to a mile with authority in the Dwyer, stopping the teletimer in 1:35, and Speightster paid $6.50 to win as the 2-1 second choice among seven three-year-olds.

Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) winner Texas Red, unraced since a neck second in the February 1 San Vicente (G2) at Santa Anita, turned in a commendable performance returning from a 153-day layoff, finishing 2 1/2 lengths clear of third-placer Tommy Macho (Macho Uno), and is eligible to improve next time after proving no match for Speightster.

Smart Transition (Smart Strike) rallied late for fourth and was followed by Blofeld (Quality Road), pacesetter Hollywood Angel (Circular Quay) and Bridget's Big Luvy (Tiz Wonderful).

Bred in Kentucky, Speightster is out of the unraced and well-bred Dance Swiftly (Danzig), a full sister to U.S. champion and Canadian Horse of the Year Dance Smartly, an earner of more than $3.2 million and a noted producer. Speightster is a half-brother to the stakes-winning filly and Grade 2 runner-up West Coast Swing (Gone West).

Dance Swiftly is out of Canadian champion Classy 'N Smart (Smarten), who along with Dance Smartly is responsible for Grade 1 winner and top sire Smart Strike; Grade 1 victor Full of Wonder; and Grade 2 hero Strike Smartly. All three are by Mr. Prospector.

Dance Smartly is the dam of Canadian champion Dancethruthedawn (Mr. Prospector), Grade 2 scorer Dance with Ravens (A.P. Indy) and Queen's Plate winner Scatter the Gold (Mr. Prospector). This is also the immediate female family of Grade 1 winner Moreno (Ghostzapper), an earner of more than $2.9 million who captured the Charles Town Classic (G2) and finished second in the Santa Anita H. (G1) earlier this season.

With Saturday's $275,000 payday, Speightster has now earned $363,800.

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Racing Headlines

Lady Tiana crowned in Lancashire Oaks; Waady triumphs in Sprint

Bred by the Pakenhams -- who enjoyed so much of the limelight with the sire Sir Percy in 2005 and 2006 -- Lady Tiana (Sir Percy) has ascended the heights gradually under the auspices of the Newmarket-based Lucy Wadham and continued her journey with a three-quarter length victory in Saturday's Lancashire Oaks at Haydock.

Lady Tiana was ridden with confidence by Graham Lee, who had failed to get the gaps in her last one and, after racing under cover in sixth throughout the early stages, was still cruising behind the leaders on the rail approaching the quarter-pole. Traveling clear best but remaining in a pocket as Miss Marjurie (Marju) was committed out wide a furlong later, she managed to ride her luck here and, under mainly hands and heels, was able to roll to the lead 75 yards out and on to an ultimately snug success.

Lady Tiana has not looked back since graduating over an extended mile at Nottingham last April and, ironically, it was back at that track that she signaled that she was ready for more than handicaps when impressing over 10 furlongs in October. She duly won in her first try at black-type in the listed Gillies Fillies' S. in her three-year-old finale at Doncaster the following month.

Both of those efforts came on testing ground, but the bay has since proven that she is more than just a mudlark and followed a promising sixth in Chantilly's Prix Allez France (Fr-G3) staying over 1 1/4 miles April 27 with a third to Miss Marjurie in the Pinnacle S. (Eng-G3) over this track and trip last out on May 30.

"It was a fantastic ride from Graham, as she has to be ridden like that and he kept his nerve," Wadham commented after greeting her first group winner. "We thought we were unlucky in the Pinnacle and she has a potent turn of foot, but you have to wait until the last minute to use it.

"She'll probably have a little holiday now, as she doesn't like fast ground and the end-of-season target will be the (October 17) British Champions Fillies & Mares S. ([Eng-G1] at Ascot) with maybe one run before that."

At Sandown on Saturday, Waady (Approve) scored in the Sprint S. (Eng-G3) on the Eclipse (Eng-G1) undercard.

Restrained as usual by Paul Hanagan, the hooded bay was keen early in sixth against the rail before being angled out to challenge approaching the last furlong. Surging to the front with 100 yards to race shortly after Wind Fire (Distorted Humor) had been muscled through a non-existent gap toward his inside, which resulted in her rider Oisin Murphy receiving a nine-day ban, Waady was pushed out to assert.

"He's very talented, but needs things to drop right, which they did there although my saddle slipped right back," Hanagan explained. "It started to shift about two down, but I was lucky.

"(Trainer) John (Gosden) has done a great job, as he was a breeze-up horse and he has that in him. If he wasn't sweating, I'd be worried and he is improving."

Like his stablemate Western Hymn (High Chaparral, Waady has a distinct liking for Sandown and delivered another of his late shows to extend his unbeaten record here and earn a first pattern-race success. The form of his third win from three visits to this venue had received a major boost after Profitable (Invincible Spirit), who had finished two lengths behind him in the June 13 listed Scurry S., had run so well when fifth in Royal Ascot's Commonwealth Cup (Eng-G1), and his task was made seemingly easier with the withdrawal of the classy filly Mecca's Angel (Dark Angel) on account of the lively ground.

"I think you've got to consider the (August 21) Nunthorpe S. ([Eng-G1] at York)," Gosden noted. "He's won a Group 3; I know that's a Group 1 which is a titanic leap, but you've got to consider it."

France

Baghadur (Zanzibari) was held on to early by Mickael Barzalona with only one behind, was outpaced at times, but stayed on strongly down the outside to reel in his barnmate De Treville (Oasis Dream) in the final 50 meters of Saturday's Prix de la Porte Maillot (Fr-G3) at Longchamp.

Having mastered subsequent dual group scorer Almanaar (Dubawi) in a 7 1/2-furlong conditions event on Chantilly's Polytrack in November, Baghadur ran third in similar events over a furlong shorter and at the former trip on that surface at Deauville in December and in his three-year-old bow on March 6 before adding to his tally going a mile back at Chantilly on April 8.

Reverting to 6 1/2 furlongs when opening his black-type account in the listed Prix Marchand d'Or at Maisons-Laffitte on June 11, he continued his progress by leading home De Treville on Saturday in a renewal dominated by the sophomores.

Germany

The homebred Anna Katharina (Kallisto) arrived in Saturday's Hamburger Stuten-Preis (Ger-G3) off a second in the June 6 listed Iffezheimer Derby-Trial at Baden-Baden and asserted for the early lead after a sharp break. Holding sway until stoked up as the pack loomed large off the home turn, she kept on strongly under a drive inside the final 300 meters to win going away for a career high.

Fifth in her only juvenile start at Hannover last October, Anna Katharina ran second at Dusseldorf in her April 12 sophomore return before graduating in a Cologne maiden in her penultimate start on May 10.

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Graded Recaps

Gimme Da Lute hits winning note in Los Alamitos Derby

Gimma Da Lute (inside) denied Prospect Park in Saturday's Los Alamitos Derby (Benoit Photos)
Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman's homebred Gimme Da Lute (Midnight Lute) fought off a determined Prospect Park (Tapit) to take Saturday's $350,000 Los Alamitos Derby (G2) by a nose on the wire for trainer Bob Baffert.

The bay colt broke on top with 2-5 favorite Kentuckian (Tiznow), ran with that one entering the first turn, but eventually settled into a stalking position just off his flank. Jockey Martin Garcia guided Gimme Da Lute as Kentuckian set splits of :23 1/5, :46 3/5 and 1:10 on the backstretch. The duo ranged up closer to the pacesetter entering the final turn and had taken command by the time they hit the lane.

By this point Prospect Park, who bided his time in the second flight behind the front runners, began his move and challenged Gimme Da Lute. The pair duked it out all the way to the finish line, with Gimme Da Lute just getting the head-bobbing win in a final time of 1:47.09 for 1 1/8 miles over the fast Los Alamitos dirt.

The time was just .08 seconds off the 1:47.01 track record set by Shared Belief (Candy Ride) in last year's running of this same race.

Gimme Da Lute paid $8.60 as the 3-1 second choice. It was another 7 3/4 lengths behind Prospect Park to Kentuckian, with Follow Me Crev (Quality Road) and Pain and Misery (Bob and John) bringing up the rear.

Gimme Da Lute earned his second straight graded score in the Los Alamitos Derby, having triumphed in the Affirmed S. (G3) at Santa Anita Park on June 7. The bay colt, who began his career on January 31 with a close nose second at Santa Anita, scored by 5 1/4 lengths while making his stakes bow in the Echo Eddie S. two races later and followed that up with thirds in the Pat Day Mile (G3) and Chick Lang S. at Churchill Downs and Pimlico, respectively.

The California-bred improved his career line to 4-1-2 from seven lifetime starts and nearly doubled his bankroll to $457,560 with Saturday's score.

Gimme Da Lute is the first registered winner out of Casino Gold (Proud Citizen) and comes from the same female family as Group 2-placed Albertine (Irish River), dam of 1993 Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) upsetter Arcangues (Sagace) as well as the ancestress of numerous Grade/Group 1 winners and classic-scoring runners.

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Racing Headlines

Quartet of competitive stakes on Queen's Plate undercard

Katie's Eyes looks to extend her winning streak to five in the Highlander (Coady Photography)
Sunday's C$1 million Queen's Plate is supported by four other stakes on the Woodbine card, three of them on the turf.

The C$200,000 Highlander (Can-G2) could have Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G1) implications. Trainer Michael Stidham is already thinking along those lines with Katie's Eyes (Leroidesanimaux), who brings a four-race winning streak versus distaffers into this tilt against males. Victorious in the April 11 Giant's Causeway over the same Keeneland course and 5 1/2-furlong trip as this year's Turf Sprint, Katie's Eyes extended her skein last time in the May 9 Unbridled Sidney at Churchill. The four-year-old filly gets in with a feathery 114-pound impost here, including new rider Patrick Husbands.

The past two winners of the Highlander are back, defending champion Something Extra (Indian Charlie) and Go Blue or Go Home (Bluegrass Cat), who hasn't won since his romp in the 2013 edition that was rained off the turf.

Something Extra, the 123-pound highweight, is in sparkling form. The Gail Cox veteran wired the April 4 Shakertown (G3) in his reappearance, beating Channel Marker (Purim), eventual Diamond Jubilee (Eng-G1) hero Undrafted (Purim) and Australian import Power Alert (Alert). Something Extra didn't confirm the form when third to Power Alert and Undrafted in the May 1 TwinSpires Turf Sprint (G3) and second to Channel Marker in the June 6 Jaipur (G3), but that remains a strong profile to bring into this race.

Mosler (War Front) also comes out of the Jaipur, where he was sixth after having to alter course around the ill-fated Helwan. Considering that the $1.05 million Keeneland September yearling had previously landed the seven-furlong Elusive Quality at Belmont, the Bill Mott pupil could find the stiffer six furlongs at Woodbine more to his taste.

Wesley Ward sends out the other distaffer in the Highlander, Shrinking Violet (Congaree), who will carry 118 pounds owing to her victory in the January 4 Monrovia (G2) at Santa Anita. The five-year-old mare has run just once in the interim, rallying for a dead-heat third in the May 16 The Very One at Pimlico. Shrinking Violet was unplaced in her only prior stakes attempt versus males in the 2014 Shakertown, but her subsequent eight-month holiday suggests that wasn't a true bill.

Sharp Sensation (Sharp Humor), who upset Maryland icon Ben's Cat (Parker's Storm Cat) in last September's Turf Monster (G3), has not raced since his second in the November 23 Kennedy Road (Can-G2) on the local Polytrack. Rounding out the field is Reflector (Ready's Image), the winner of two straight in Louisiana, who has since returned to Pavel Matejka ahead of his Woodbine debut.

Chad Brown sends Watsdachances to the Dance Smartly... (Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club)
Although it would be too simplistic to reduce the C$200,000 Dance Smartly (Can-G2) and the C$150,000 Singspiel (Can-G3) to a Mark Casse versus Chad Brown show, the two trainers have strong hands in both races.

In the 1 1/8-mile Dance Smartly for fillies and mares, Casse is doubly represented by last-out Nassau (Can-G2) heroine Sky Treasure (Sky Mesa) and by Industrial Policy (Harlan's Holiday), a troubled fifth in last year's Dance Smartly.

Brown, who trained Industrial Policy earlier in her career, relies on Watsdachances (Diamond Green). Fourth in the Flower Bowl Invitational (G1) in her 2014 finale, the ever-honest mare opened this season with a smooth success in the May 16 Gallorette (G3) at Pimlico.

Among the others are a pair of champions in Solid Appeal (Successful Appeal) and Habibi (Ekraar). Solid Appeal has won only once since taking the 2013 Dance Smartly in her Sovereign Award campaign, and trainer Reade Baker has opted to put the blinkers back on. Former New Zealand champion Habibi, who beat the boys in her homeland's Derby (NZ-G1) in 2013, is a fascinating contender. Beaten in her three tries in Southern California, she missed by a nose to Smartyfly (Smart Strike) in her first Woodbine outing, and could have still more to offer.

Mark Frostad has cross-entered Habibi to the 1 1/2-mile Singspiel versus males, where she would face Casse's Canadian turf champion Dynamic Sky (Sky Mesa) and Hyper (Victory Gallop) from the Brown barn.

Dynamic Sky earned a divisional Sovereign Award largely on the strength of his placings behind Euro shippers in last fall's Northern Dancer Turf (Can-G1) and Canadian International (Can-G1) at this course and distance. Out of luck since capturing the November 15 Red Smith (G3), the John C. Oxley runner cuts back in trip off a third in the two-mile Belmont Gold Cup Invitational June 5.

...and Hyper to the Singspiel (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Hyper was in the form of his life in 2013, garnering the Bowling Green H. (G2) and closing smartly for second in the Canadian International (his only previous Woodbine appearance). Sidelined for nearly 18 months, the now eight-year-old resurfaced with a commendable third in the May 9 Man o' War (G1). He could do no better than eighth next time in the 1 1/4-mile Manhattan H. (G1), but the combination of a hike in distance and a drop in class should suit.

Possibly overlooked is defending champion Aldous Snow (Theatrical), who left Dynamic Sky back in third in the 2014 Singspiel. Winless in the interim, the Malcolm Pierce charge is nonetheless rounding into form for this third start of the season.

The stakes action kicks off with the C$150,000 Clarendon S. for Ontario-bred juveniles at 5 1/2 furlongs. The Casse-trained Beliveau (Where's the Ring) is the one to beat after passing the post first in both starts. A 5 1/4-length debut winner over the Polytrack, he switched to turf for the Victoria and prevailed by a head, only to be disqualified for interference.

Also exiting the Victoria is fourth-placer Get'erdonebud (Kentucky Bear), who likewise captured his debut convincingly on the Polytrack and figures to enjoy reverting to his original surface. Hey Bear (Kentucky Bear) and Bright Light (Judiths Wild Rush) were first and second, respectively, in a June 17 maiden over the track. The remaining five entrants are all first-time starters.

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Graded Recaps

Private Zone much the best in Belmont Sprint Championship

Private Zone was never seriously asked (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Good Friends Stable LLC's Private Zone (Macho Uno) broke on top and dominated the rest of the way in Saturday's $384,000 Belmont Sprint Championship (G3), scoring comfortably by a 3 1/4-length margin. The six-year-old was favored at 1-5 over four rivals and completed seven furlongs in 1:22 2/5 with regular rider Martin Pedroza.

Trained by Jorge Navarro, Private Zone is now three for four at Belmont, winning the last two editions of the Vosburgh (G1), and he also captured the 2014 Cigar Mile H. (G1) at Aqueduct. The bay gelding was exiting a respectable third in the Metropolitan H. (G1) on the June 6 Belmont Stakes undercard.

Cutting back to a more favorable sprint distance, Private Zone performed at a different level from his foes. He cruised through an opening quarter-mile in :22 2/5 on a short lead before reaching the half-mile in :44 3/5 with a 3 1/2-length cushion. After six furlongs in 1:09, the dynamic front-runner was under wraps the rest of the way.

With the $220,000 payday, the Ontario-bred has now earned $2,233,120 from a 29-9-8-3 record.

Clearly Now (Horse Greeley), who established a new track record winning the 2013 Belmont Sprint Championship, rallied belatedly for second, 2 1/4 lengths better than third-placer Stallwalkin' Dude (City Place). Green Gratto (Here's Zealous) and C. Zee (Elusive Bird) rounded out the finish, with The Big Beast (Yes It's True), Bay of Plenty (Medaglia d'Oro) and Moonlight Song (Unbridled's Song) all being scratched.

Bred by Adena Springs, Private Zone sold for $15,000 as a 2010 Keeneland September yearling and is now owned by a partnership that includes former jockey Rene Douglas. He's out of the unraced Siphon mare Auburn Beauty and hails from the female family of U.S. turf champion Chief Bearhart (Chief's Crown).

After starting his racing career in Panama, Private Zone made his U.S. debut at Del Mar in 2012. The accomplished sprinter notched his eighth career stakes victory on Saturday and has placed in a number of important events, including a third in the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) last fall. He was previously trained by Alfredo Velazquez and Doug O'Neill.

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Irish Jasper scores in Victory Ride

Irish Jasper pulled away to record her third straight stakes win in the Victory Ride (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Trainer Derek Ryan's Irish Jasper (First Defence) ran her current win streak to three straight when taking Saturday's $147,000 Victory Ride S. (G3) at Belmont Park by three lengths. Jockey Javier Castellano guided the sophomore miss, who easily held the late-charging, even-money favorite Enchanting Lady (Tale of the Cat) to finish 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:16 3/5 on the fast main track.

Super Saks (Sky Mesa) set the pace through splits of :22 and :45 3/5 while tracked by Kathballu (Bluegrass Cat) to her outside and Promise Me Silver (Silver City) just behind on the rail. Irish Jasper, meanwhile, was running in the back of the pack before making her move nearing the turn.

The dark bay miss swung widest of all heading into the turn and circled the entire field. She easily took over in the lane and extended her margin with every step. Enchanting Lady, who had fallen to last around the turn, suddenly kicked into gear and was coming fast down the center of the track, but ran out of room late as Irish Jasper proved best.

"Today we were very fortunate," Castellano said. "She broke well out of the gate and put me in a good spot. There was a lot of speed in the race. I learned from the first time I rode her and it paid off today. Phenomenal filly."

Ryan indicated that Irish Jasper is now headed to the $500,000 Test S. (G1) going seven furlongs at Saratoga on August 8.

"I bought her off a friend of mine last year in Ocala, and it worked out great," he stated. "I think she's the best three-year-old filly in the country.

"The seven-eighths is going to be perfect for the Test; that's the next big thing for her. We'll see where we are after that.

Sent off the near 5-1 fourth choice in the six-horse field, Irish Jasper paid $11.80 for the win. Enchanting Lady had 2 3/4 lengths to spare on Kathballu, who just got her head in front of Miss Ella (Exchange Rate) for third. Promise Me Silver, who appeared to nearly run up on Super Saks' heels at one point, finished fifth, just up on that early pacesetter.

Irish Jasper is now three-for-three since Ryan took the blinkers off for the April 26 Belle Harbor S. at Aqueduct. The three-year-old filly took the Miss Preakness S. (G3) next out in her most recent start, and also boasts a win from last year's Gasparilla S. Her resume now stands at 9-6-0-1 and she's banked $312,800 lifetime.

Bred in Kentucky by Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Courteny Sr., Irish Jasper sold for $12,000 as a Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Fall yearling. She is the first registered stakes winner out of Irish Connection (Mr. Greeley), who is a half-sister to a pair of stakes-place winners in Dicey Girl (Yonaguska) and Gallows (Red Ransom).

Irish Jasper's third dam is Grade 2-placed stakes heroine Now Dance (Sovereign Dancer), who produced stakes scorers Touchdown (Pleasant Tap), Timetobewild (Time for a Change) and Danceroftherealm (King of Kings).

Irish Jasper's fifth dam is Argentinean champion Taba (Table Play), who is probably best known for foaling 1986 champion older horse Turkoman (Alydar).

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Racing Headlines

Main Sequence returns to defend United Nations title

Main Sequence could etch his name alongside such legends as Round Table and Manila (Carl Sari/Equi-Photo)
One year ago, dual Eclipse Award winner Main Sequence (Aldebaran) began his inexorable march through the U.S. turf scene by capturing his American debut in the $500,000 United Nations (G1) at Monmouth. On Sunday, the Niarchos Family's homebred returns in the same spot, hoping to re-start his 2015 campaign after a disappointing loss in Dubai.

Main Sequence is unbeaten in five U.S. starts for trainer Graham Motion, all accomplished with his flair for a dramatic, up-in-time finish. Off for eight months after his repatriation from Europe in the winter of 2013-14, he resurfaced in the 2014 United Nations and flew late to deny Twilight Eclipse (Purim). His ensuing victories in the Sword Dancer Invitational (G1), Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational (G1) and Breeders' Cup Turf (G1) earned him not only an Eclipse Award as champion turf male, but also the champion older male crown.

After reappearing triumphant in the February 21 Mac Diarmida (G2) at Gulfstream, where he defeated Twilight Eclipse for the fifth straight time, Main Sequence carried high hopes into the March 28 Dubai Sheema Classic (UAE-G1). But he faded after a wide trip, and a middle move, and wound up seventh.

Main Sequence was freshened upon his return home, and Motion has been pleased with his recent works at Fair Hill.

"He is a very professional horse and is always straightforward," Motion said. "He's had no problems since coming back from Dubai.

"Both workouts have looked good. I could've ran him a few weeks ago, but wanted to put him in the best spot possible."

Regular rider Rajiv Maragh will be back aboard as Main Sequence breaks from post 6 in this 1 3/8-mile "Win & You're In" for the Breeders' Cup Turf. Should he repeat, Main Sequence would join an honor roll of two-time UN winners including Round Table (1957, 1959), Mongo (1962-63), Noble Dancer (1978-79), Manila (1986-87), Sandpit (1995-96), English Channel (2006-07) and Presious Passion (2008-09).

Stablemates Slumber and Big Blue Kitten ran one-two in the Manhattan (NYRA/Coglianese Photography/Adam Mooshian)
In addition to familiar foes Twilight Eclipse and Imagining (Giant's Causeway), Main Sequence will also face the Chad Brown duo of Slumber (Cacique) and Big Blue Kitten (Kitten's Joy) and streaking Southern California shipper Ashleyluvssugar (Game Plan).

Slumber has awakened since joining Brown late last year, with the application of blinkers conjuring up a career-best in the June 6 Manhattan H. (G1) at Belmont. Overlooked at 14-1, the seven-year-old finally earned a big prize when driving to a 2 3/4-length decision over favored stablemate Big Blue Kitten.

Big Blue Kitten, a fellow seven-year-old, seeks to regain the United Nations title he won back in 2013. The Ken and Sarah Ramsey homebred has yet to scale the heights of that campaign, when he also captured the Sword Dancer and missed by a whisker in the Joe Hirsch. The honest and dependable type has nevertheless run well in the interim, and he kicked off 2015 with a convincing score in the May 2 Fort Marcy (G3). But he's got work to do to turn the tables on the resurgent Slumber, as well as Main Sequence, Twilight Eclipse and Imagining.

Since getting away from Main Sequence, turf veterans Twilight Eclipse and Imagining have had mixed results. Imagining left Twilight Eclipse back in third when taking the March 28 Pan American (G2), but was only fifth to that same rival in the May 9 Man o' War (G1). Twilight Eclipse scored a deserved Grade 1 breakthrough on that occasion, only to retreat to seventh last time in the Manhattan.

Ashleyluvssugar, in contrast, is an upwardly mobile four-year-old. Improved markedly since stretching out on the Santa Anita turf, the Peter Eurton trainee brings a three-race win skein including the March 21 San Luis Rey (G2) and May 24 Charles Whittingham (G2). This represents a much stiffer class test, but his gaudy 108 BRIS Speed figure from the San Luis Rey suggests that he could be up to it. Hall of Famer Gary Stevens comes in to maintain the partnership.

Rounding out the field are the Todd Pletcher-trained Divine Oath (Broken Vow), who's got a bit to find on form with these; Sycamore Lane (Artie Schiller), who makes an audacious stakes debut off a pair of allowance wins for Hall of Famer Bill Mott; and recent Ramsey claim Shining Copper (Aragorn), who has the look of a pacemaker for Big Blue Kitten.

Race Day, unraced since Oaklawn, makes his eagerly awaited return in the Salvator Mile (Coady Photography)
One race earlier at Monmouth, Race Day (Tapit) aims to continue his ascent in the handicap division in the $150,000 Salvator Mile (G3).

The Pletcher pupil has won five of his last six, his lone loss in that span a close third to Valid (Medaglia d'Oro) in the February 7 Fred Hooper (G3). The lightly raced four-year-old then successfully invaded Hot Springs, where he battled to a narrow victory in the March 14 Razorback (G3) and drew off commandingly in the April 11 Oaklawn H. (G2). Race Day has been unraced since then, but his bullet works of late imply he's ready. Hall of Famer John Velazquez has the return call.

Other contenders include the aforementioned Valid, who hasn't won since the Hooper and exits a second to the re-opposing Red Vine (Candy Ride) in the local prep, the Majestic Light; Bradester (Lion Heart), runner-up in last year's Salvator Mile to Itsmyluckyday and to Valid in the 2014 Monmouth Cup (G2); and millionaire Pants on Fire (Jump Start), who's eligible to rebound from an uncharacteristic seventh in the June 6 Metropolitan H. (G1).

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Summit of Speed boasts Work All Week, competitive fields

Work All Week (right) denied defending champion Secret Circle in the 2014 Breeders' Cup Sprint (Wendy Wooley/EquiSport Photos)
Gulfstream Park plays host to the $1.175 million Summit of Speed program on Sunday featuring 12 races, including the $250,000 Smile Sprint S. (G2) and $250,000 Princess Rooney S. (G2) sending runners six furlongs.

Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) hero and Eclipse champion Work All Week (City Zip) figures to be the most accomplished performer in the Smile Sprint while Merry Meadow (Henny Hughes) returns to the site of her Hurricane Bertie S. (G3) tour de force in the Princess Rooney. Each race is a "Win & You're In" to their respective Breeders' Cup sprint divisions for the winners.

Work All Week is seeking a return to the winner's circle after bruising a foot while running second in his 2015 debut, the Aristides S. (G3), on May 30 at Churchill Downs. The six-year-old gelding went 5-1-0 from six starts last year, including victories in the Breeders' Cup Sprint and Phoenix S. (G3), and will be making his Gulfstream bow in this spot under Florent Geroux for trainer Roger Brueggemann.

The homebred chestnut, who is campaigned by Richard and Karen Papiese's Midwest Thoroughbreds, readied for the Smile Sprint with a swift :46 1/5 breeze on June 28 under the Twin Spires, his second straight bullet move after going in :59 2/5 on June 21.

"We weren't looking for him to work that fast, but he did it all on his own," Richard Papiese said. "We hope it's an indication that he is going to run a big race this weekend."

Also of note in the Smile Sprint is Alsvid (Officer), who defeated Work All Week when taking the Aristides by two lengths. The Chris Hartman-trained gelding brings a three-race win streak into the event after taking an allowance/optional claimer in March prior to a three-quarter length score in the Count Fleet Sprint H. (G3) about two weeks later.

Chris Landeros has been aboard for Alsvid's current win streak and retains the mount.

Grande Shores will be competing over his home track in the Smile Sprint, having recorded 13 in-the-money finishes from 16 career tries at Gulfstream. The seven-year-old Jacks or Better homebred seemingly has gotten better with age after his career had been compromised by a chronic digestive disorder that is under control but still demands constant monitoring.

"I know he's going to run his heart out," trainer Stanley Gold said. "There's going to be plenty of speed in it and he'll be coming. I'd rather see it be seven (furlongs) instead of six. He's going to have to be coming faster and start sooner. He's earned the shot. You hate to possibly get overmatched, but I can't say he is overmatched."

Eddie Castro, who rode Grande Shores to a three-quarter length victory in the Parrot Key S. last out, has the call.

Merry Meadow is no stranger to winning at Gulfstream (Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography)
The Princess Rooney takes place one race before the Smile Sprint and has attracted Merry Meadow, who will ship in from New York following a subpar sixth in the seven-furlong Inside Information S. (G2) on March 21.

"It was the distance and the way the race unfolded," trainer Mark Hennig revealed about the Inside Information. "She isn't really one that wants to be up there fighting for the lead. It's not her style. Knowing it was seven-eighths, it was the worst-case scenario. I think for her to get seven-eighths, she has to have an ideal trip, and she had a less-than-ideal trip at a less-than-ideal distance."

The five-year-old bay will cut back to her ideal distance of three-quarters while returning from a more than three-month freshening under Javier Castellano. The two paired up one race after Merry Meadow captured the Sky Beauty S. last November to take both the Sugar Swirl S. (G3) and Hurricane Bertie.

"She's been doing great," Hennig said. "It was the timing, more than anything else, and the distance, and it's on a familiar racetrack. Gulfstream making the accommodations to get there and back helped as well.

"She's always held her form," the conditioner added. "She's never really ever needed any one set track. She's traveled well and run on all kinds of surfaces. She's always been a pretty consistent runner. We were able to give her a little breather after (the Inside Information), and she's always run well fresh."

Earlier on the Summit of Speed program, 10 sophomore colts and geldings will go seven furlongs in the $150,000 Carry Back S. (G3) while nine three-year-old fillies take part in the $150,000 Azalea S. (G3) at the same distance.

Barbados (Speightstown) enters the Carry Back off a more than five-money break, having last been seen recording his third straight win in the Hutcheson S. (G3) over track and distance. The Azalea features the respective top three -- Huasca (Tiz Wonderful), Dogwood Trail (Awescome of Course) and Fond of Sarah (With Distinction) -- from the track and distance Tangelo H. on June 6, as well as Jostle S. vixen Warriorscmoutoplay (Warrior's Reward).

Five other stakes are carded for the day as well. Eight juveniles have been entered in the $75,000 Birdonthewire S. going 5 1/2 furlongs to kick off the stakes action, followed one race later by the fillies equivalent, the $75,000 Cassidy S., which drew nine runners.

The $75,000 Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint attracted a field of nine to go five furlongs on the turf, while the $75,000 Miesque's Approval S. and sister race $75,000 Spook Express S. will each send contestants 1 1/16 miles on the green. The former will see 10 line up while the Spook Express boasts 15, including one main-track only entrant.

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Graded Recaps

Coffee Clique perks up in Dr. James Penny Memorial

Grade 1 heroine Coffee Clique outclassed her eight rivals in Philadelphia (Barb Weidl/Equi-Photo)
Coffee Clique (Medaglia d'Oro) ended a three-race losing skid in fine style Saturday when taking the $200,000 Dr. James Penny Memorial H. (G3) at Parx Racing under Manny Franco.

Kept wide but no more than 2 1/2 lengths from longshot pacesetter Sassy Little Cat (Albert the Great), who carved out fractions of :23 3/5, :48 2/5 and 1:12 3/5, Coffee Clique moved into contention around the far turn, joining 29-1 chance Pink Poppy (Tiznow). Edging clear of that one passing the eighth pole, the five-year-old mare drew off to win by 1 1/4 lengths in a time of 1:42 3/5 for 1 1/16 miles on a firm turf.

A homebred owned by Amerman Racing, and trained by Brian Lynch, Coffee Clique returned $3.40 as the 7-10 favorite.

Testa Rossi (Dr Fong), the second choice in a field of nine fillies and mares, rallied to edge Pink Poppy for second by a neck. Finishing behind Pink Poppy were Nellie Cashman (Mineshaft), Means Well (Smart Strike), Baffle Me (First Samurai), Giant Shadow (Giant's Causeway), Distorted Beauty (Invasor), and Sassy Little Cat. Photo Call (Galileo) was scratched after competing in Friday's $100,000 Perfect Sting at Belmont Park.

This was the fourth graded stakes win for Coffee Clique, who captured the 2013 Selene (Can-G3) at Woodbine as a three-year-old and added last year's Churchill Distaff Turf Mile (G2) and Just a Game (G1) at Belmont Park.

Out of action more than nine months following the latter event, she returned March 28 to finish third in the Honey Fox (G2) at Gulfstream, and then was second and sixth, respectively, when defending her titles in the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile and Just a Game. Her record now stands at 15-7-2-2, $1,041,488.

Bred in Kentucky, Coffee Clique was reared by Miss Chapin (Royal Academy), who is also the dam of Grade 2-placed Royal Fury (Langfuhr) and the stakes-placed Schoolofhardrocks (Rock Hard Ten).

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Racing Headlines

Golden Horn turns back The Grey Gatsby in Eclipse

Peerless in the Dante S. (Eng-G2) at York May 14 and Epsom Derby (Eng-G1) June 6, Anthony Oppenheimer's Golden Horn (Cape Cross) had to fight harder taking on the older horses for the first time in Saturday's Eclipse S. (Eng-G1) at Sandown, but showed another side of his character to come out firmly on top again.

Sent to the front from the outset as Frankie Dettori sought to avoid any tactical nuances, the 4-9 favorite was hassled from the top of the home stretch by chief rival The Grey Gatsby (Mastercraftsman) and may have been briefly headed by that four-year-old before the quarter pole. Stirred when the whip was drawn shortly after, he pulled steadily clear in the final furlong to record an ultimately authoritative 3 1/2-length triumph.

"Jamie (Spencer) was very clever attacking me early, but when he was eyeballed he showed what a champion he is," Dettori said. "He knuckled down and showed a lot of guts. He had been working brilliantly and we were the Derby winner getting the weight allowance, so I didn't want to risk not making the running. We thought he was the best horse and so wanted to prove it by doing it the hard way."

His owner-breeder added of the unbeaten bay, who is bound for the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth S. (Eng-G1) at Ascot in three weeks' time if he pleases in the interim.

"Frankie says we haven't got to the bottom of him yet, which is very exciting but the horse and John Gosden will tell us where to go next," he said. "He didn't seem to have too hard a race, but we don't know how much it's taken out of him."

In the late 1980s, the Eclipse was in its heyday and proved the natural port of call for the best of the classic brigade with Dancing Brave and Nashwan succeeding in enhancing their exalted reputations and Reference Point just failing to overcome the rock-hard Mtoto. All three of those went on to King George glory later that month and connections of Golden Horn will be hoping that he can emulate Nashwan in bringing off the treble this summer now that he has taken the first two tests in his stride.

Delivered from behind in the Dante and Derby, the dark bay faced a different pace scenario in this first major clash of the generations with just four older rivals looking to overcome a sizeable weight-for-age disadvantage and their riders understandably reluctant to set the race up for the sophomore. Unperturbed by this potential quandary, Dettori sent Golden Horn to the lead after half-missing the kick where he was tracked closely by The Grey Gatsby.

Knowing how much last year's Prix du Jockey Club (Fr-G1) and Irish Champion S. (Ire-G1) winner likes a tussle, Jamie Spencer asked the four-year-old to pull some early punches after the home turn and for about a furlong it looked as if he might have his younger rival's measure. Still relatively inexperienced despite his high-profile achievements, the Oppenheimer homebred needed a slap with the whip to assert his influence and from the furlong pole his late-race power came into play once again as he drew away for a decisive score.

"It kind of took him by surprise, because he's never been in front and he had every chance to give in late on but he put some daylight between them at the end," Dettori said. "He's a very laid-back horse and you have to be aggressive with him, but in all his works and the races I've ridden him in he never finishes tired. He must have a remarkable physique, as he hits the line running every time and I think he's still got something left. He's a remarkable horse and is up there with the very best I've ridden."

Golden Horn's latest exploits extended the annus mirabilis for trainer John Gosden and he paid tribute to the winner and the race as a spectacle.

"I think the moment the draw came out, we knew we had to go forward and although we hoped someone else would go on, they didn't. What a lovely race it was, with The Grey Gatsby right there all the way and a top three-year-old and a top older horse in a clean, hard race. It was a real ding-dong battle and then in the last furlong he's asserted properly and strongly and has found three lengths. He's a very high-class horse. He's won his Derby, he's come here and won the Eclipse and I've got enormous respect for the second and personally I thought it was a purist's race and a great race."

Gosden was keen to focus on the short-term targets only at present, with a tilt at the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-G1) at Longchamp October 4 in the balance.

"If he's in tremendous form, of course the King George would be wonderful to run in and the horse will tell me. That's my job and I have to watch and feel and see how he is. If we decide it's a dance too far, then he won't go to Ascot as we always do what's right by them. He's not in the Arc, so he'd have to be supplemented but I think he'd be an Arc horse unless it went bottomless."

The Grey Gatsby was coming off second best again as he had in Royal Ascot's Prince of Wales's S. (Eng-G1) June 17, but trainer Kevin Ryan was far from downcast.

"It was a great race, which the race deserves to be and I think we've seen two very exceptional and brave horses. For him to concede the weight he has done, he must be exceptional too. I thought two down we had him, but he is a very tough horse and there were no hard-luck stories. Both jockeys rode great races and we're very proud of our horse.

"I think now we'll just wait for the (August 19) Juddmonte International (Eng-G1)  -- I'd love to take him back to York, our home track and it gives us about six weeks, which I think he deserves now."

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Danish Dynaformer aims to give Attfield record ninth Queen's Plate

Plate Trial winner Danish Dynaformer rates as the 3-1 favorite on the morning line (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Charles Fipke's Danish Dynaformer (Dynaformer), Stronach Stables' Shaman Ghost (Ghostzapper) and Bear Stables' filly Academic (Henny Hughes) head an ultra-competitive field of 14 for the C$1 million Queen's Plate, Canada's most famous horse race, Sunday at Woodbine.

Now in its 156th edition, the Plate is the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America. The classic for Canadian-foaled three-year-olds is held over 1 1/4 miles on the Polytrack.

At the Queen's Plate breakfast on Thursday morning, the selection order for post positions was drawn first via the traditional "pill-pull," followed by the choosing of post positions by the connections for each horse, a system which has been in place for the Plate since 1998.

Danish Dynaformer, one of two (Billy's Star [Perfect Soul] is the other) trained by Hall of Famer Roger Attfield, will try to give his conditioner a record ninth Plate win and has been established as the lukewarm 3-1 morning line favorite. Attfield chose post 7 with the second selection.

The Fipke homebred scored an impressive three-quarter length victory over Conquest Curlinate (Curlin) in the June 14 Plate Trial, his third win in six career starts. It followed a close third place finish to Plate rival Shaman Ghost in the Marine S. (Can-G3) on May 16. Twenty-five Plate Trial winners have gone on to win the King/Queen's Plate since 1944, the last being Big Red Mike in 2010.

"He's a really nice horse, no question about it," Attfield said. "He's got a big turn of foot and a huge cruising speed. He's a very versatile horse."

Attfield is currently tied with Harry Giddings Jr. for most Plate wins. His previous winners were Not Bourbon (for Fipke) in 2008, Regal Discovery (1995), Peteski (1993), Alydeed (1992), Izvestia (1990), With Approval (1989), Market Control (1987) and Norcliffe (1976). Peteski, Izvestia and With Approval all went on to win the Canadian Triple Crown.

Danish Dynaformer will be ridden by Patrick Husbands for the first time, since Luis Contreras, aboard for the Trial, was previously committed to Ami's Flatter (Flatter). Husbands has won the Plate twice, in 2003 with eventual Triple Crown winner Wando, then last year with filly Lexie Lou (Sligo Bay). The last jockey to win back-to-back Plates was Eurico Rosa da Silva in 2009-10, with Eye of the Leopard and Big Red Mike, respectively.

Billy's Star (15-1), with the aforementioned Rosa da Silva, currently Woodbine's leading rider aboard, finished a troubled sixth in the Trial, yet only five lengths behind his stablemate, after breaking his maiden in May at Woodbine over 1 1/16 miles. Also bred by Fipke but now owned by Perfect Timber Partnership, he was a $161,177 Canadian Select yearling purchase.

Shaman Ghost was last seen landing the Marine (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Stronach Stables' homebred Shaman Ghost (7-2) hasn't raced since his winning effort in the 1 1/16-mile Marine, when overcoming traffic with a powerful late stretch charge. Trained by Brian Lynch, Shaman Ghost will be ridden by Rafael Hernandez, who has piloted the colt to three consecutive wins, including the Marine.

"Winning form is the best form and he's won three in a row," said Lynch, who didn't have to pick a post when he drew number 14 in the selection order, and only the rail was left. "He's been doing everything well in those last three, really fighting to the wire in all of them. I like the way he doesn't give up. He just keeps on battling. Hopefully, he brings that same great fight with him to the Plate."

Stronach is a two-time Plate winner (Basqueian, 1994 and Awesome Again, 1997), while Lynch just missed winning the 2008 Plate with Stronach's filly Ginger Brew, finishing a head behind Not Bourbon.

Bear Stables' Academic (5-1), with Justin Stein aboard, scored a 66-1 shocker three weeks ago when wiring her rivals in the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks. It was just the second start of the year for the filly. Her 1 1/8-mile time of 1.48.86 was a track record and almost one second faster than it took Danish Dynaformer to win the Trial a race before. Her connections drew the first post selection and picked post 4.

Academic, the field's leading money winner with $293,141 after being bought for $54,000 at the Ocala Two-Year-Olds In training Sale, will try to become the 36th filly to win the Plate since 1860, the eighth since 1956 and the seventh to sweep both the Oaks and the Plate, joining Flaming Page (1962), La Lorgnette (1985), Dance Smartly (1991), Dancethruthedawn (2001), Inglorious (2011) and Lexie Lou (2014).

Stein rode Strait of Dover to victory in the 2012 Plate, while Bear Stables and trainer Reade Baker, who will also saddle Bear At Last (Marchfield) and Breaking Lucky (Lookin at Lucky), finished third last year with Asserting Bear.

Breaking Lucky (20-1), owned by Gunpowder Farms, broke his maiden at Woodbine in April, then was second and seventh in two subsequent route allowance races. The son of 2010 Preakness (G1) winner Lookin At Lucky will be ridden by Jim McAleney, who has twice finished second in the Plate, aboard I And I in 2000 and Anglian Prince in 2002. Bear Stables' Bear At Last (30-1), a one-time winner in 11 outings to be ridden by Rico Walcott, was most recently seventh in the Plate Trial.

Academic takes on the boys after her track record-setting victory in the Woodbine Oaks (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Queen's Plate winterbook favourite Ami's Flatter (6-1), trained by Josie Carroll for owner-breeder Ivan Dalos, disappointed as the 3-5 favorite in the Marine, finishing seventh, five lengths behind Shaman Ghost. That result came after a competitive run on the Kentucky Derby (G1) trail, which saw him finish second to Carpe Diem (Giant's Causeway) in the Tampa Bay Derby (G1) at Tampa Bay Downs and third to Materiality (Afleet Alex) in the Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park. The field's second leading money winner with $232,231 will be ridden by Contreras from the outside post 14.

Dalos, Carroll and Contreras teamed to finish second with Ami's Holiday (Harlan's Holiday) in last year's Plate. Carroll, though, has won two Plates -- Edenwold (2006) and Inglorious (2011) -- and is the only female trainer to even win the Plate while Contreras was aboard Inglorious for his first Plate score.

Seven-time Sovereign Award-winning trainer Mark Casse, who saddled last year's winner Lexie Lou, will try to win a second consecutive Plate with Conquest Stables' Conquest Boogaloo (Scat Daddy) and Bill and Vicki Poston's Oakton (Macho Uno). The last trainer to win back-to-back Plates was Mark Frostad in 2000-2001.

Conquest Boogaloo (8-1), a $190,000 Keeneland yearling buy, finished a closing troubled third in the Plate Trial, just two lengths behind Danish Dynaformer. He also encountered a difficult trip in the Marine, when eighth to Shaman Ghost. He's won two of seven, including last year's Swynford S., and will be handled by Alan Garcia. Oakton (20-1), a one-time winner in six starts, will be ridden for the first time by Tyler Pizarro, who finished second for Casse in the 2011 Plate aboard Hippolytus.

Chiefswood Stable's homebred Portree (Niigon) (12-1), trained by Stuart Simon and ridden by Gerry Olguin, finished an excellent fourth in the Plate Trial, just 2 1/2 lengths behind winner Danish Dynaformer, after leading in midstretch. It was just his third career start after winning his first two outings earlier this year. He'll try to become the eighth Plate winner since 1956 to be sired/foaled by a Plate winner. Chiefswood won the 2004 Plate with their homebred Niigon.

Trainer Mike Keogh will send out Gus Schickedanz's homebred Sweet Grass Creek (Wando) (20-1), a one-time winner in five starts. Keogh and Schickedanz teamed to win the 1999 Plate with Woodcarver, then captured the Triple Crown with Hall of Famer Wando in 2003. Jesse Campbell, who took the 2013 Plate aboard front-running Midnight Aria, has the mount.

Ami's Flatter, the winter book favorite, looks to restore his reputation (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Tucci Stables' Easy Indygo (Marchfield) (30-1), also purchased at the Ocala Two-Year-olds in training sale for $60,000, has won once in seven starts. Tucci Stables' won the 2013 Plate with Midnight Aria, while trainer Nick Gonzalez conditioned both Midnight Aria and 2010 Plate winner Big Red Mike. Jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson is the only female rider to win the Plate in 2007 with Mike Fox.

Canyon Farms' British Columbia homebred Ault (English Channel) (30-1) will try to become the fourth horse since 1952 to break his maiden in the Plate, the latest to do so being Scatter the Gold in 2000. To be ridden by David Moran for trainer Dan Vella, he has been a close second in his three Woodbine Polytrack appearances, but out of the money in two grass attempts at Gulfstream Park this winter.

Canyon Farms won the 2012 Plate with another homebred, Strait of Dover, also a son of English Channel, while Vella, in addition to training Strait of Dover, won the 1994 Plate with Basqueian. Moran finished third in the 2010 Plate aboard Oaks winner Roan Inish.

Preston Stables' Milwaukee Mist (Milwaukee Brew) (30-1) has campaigned at Turfway Park, Keeneland and Churchill Downs, winning one of six starts. Trained by Pavel Matejka, Milwaukee Mist will be ridden by Gary Boulanger, who won the 2001 Plate with Oaks winner Dancethruthedawn.

Of the 14 starters in this year's Plate, 12 have connections (owner, trainer and/or jockey) who have previously won the Plate. Four horses in the field - Breaking Lucky, Milwaukee Mist, Oakton and Portree -- did not start at two. Eye of the Leopard (2009), Scatter The Gold (2000) and Awesome Again (1997) are the latest Plate winners who did not race as two-year-olds.

The Queen's Plate is the first leg in the Canadian Triple Crown. The second leg is the C$500,000 Prince of Wales S., at 1 3/16 miles on Tuesday, July 28, at Fort Erie, while the C$500,000 Breeders' S., at 1 1/2 miles on the grass, August 16 at Woodbine, comprises the third and final leg. There have been seven Triple Crown winners since the concept was inaugurated in 1959, the first being New Providence in 1959, the latest being Wando in 2003.

Since 1956, the stakes record for the Plate is 2:01 4/5, set by Izvestia in 1990, when he also won by the largest margin, 13 lengths. Strait of Dover, the 2012 winner, owns the fastest Polytrack time since 2007 of 2:01.99. The longest-priced winner in the modern era (since 1956) is T J's Lucky Moon ($166) in 2002 while Maternal Pride is the highest-priced winner of all time, paying $193.35 in 1924. Since 1956, favorites have won 22 of 59 runnings (37.2 percent). However, Wando in 2003, and Eye of the Leopard in 2009, are the only Plate favorites to win in the last 20 editions.

Three other stakes, all of them on the grass, will be part of the Queen's Plate Day undercard -- the C$200,000 Dance Smartly (Can-G2), at 1 1/8 miles at 3:02 p.m., the C$150,000 Singspiel (Can-G3) at 1 1/2 miles at 4:18 p.m. and the C$200,000 Highlander (Can-G2) at six furlongs at 4:53 p.m. First race post time is noon.

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In brief

Shadwell Stable's Matrooh (Distorted Humor) out-dueled the returning Samraat (Noble Causeway) and withstood the late bid of Catholic Cowboy (Heatseeker) to capture Saturday's fourth race at Belmont Park, a 1 1/16-mile allowance/optional claiming event worth $102,000. A three-quarters brother to 2003 champion three-year-old male and dual classic winner Funny Cide, the five-year-old gelding stopped the teletimer in 1:42 1/5 on the fast track. Now three for four in the United States for trainer Chad Brown, the lone setback coming to eventual Stephen Foster (G1) winner Noble Bird (Birdstone) in a Keeneland allowance, Matrooh came back from a 16-month layoff at Gulfstream Park in March after making his first five starts in England and is likely stakes-bound. Multiple Grade 3 winner Samraat, making his first appearance since a sixth in the 2014 Belmont Stakes (G1), wound up weakening to fourth...

Despite the loss of the injury-afflicted likely favorite Quasillo (Sea the Stars), Sunday's 146th Deutsches Derby (Ger-G1) at Hamburg still offers an enticing brew with a colt in Shimrano (Monsun) who would be unbeaten were it not for encountering that absent rival. It was in a conditions race over the Derby at Munich on April 19 that Shimrano was put in his place by Quasillo, and the form of that contest was given credence by the winner's subsequent exploits in the Bavarian Classic (Ger-G3). While Quasillo went on the easy list, Australia Racing Stables' Shimrano went on to capture the May 25 listed Grosser Preis der Hannoverschen Volksbank-Derby Trial and Oppenheim-Union-Rennen (Ger-G2) at Cologne on June 14 and lines up with a favorite's chance here. Third in the latter contest was Stall Nizza's Nutan (Duke of Marmalade), who had previously scored by seven lengths over that same track and trip on May 10, and he could be a different proposition here along with Gestut Schlenderhan's Isidor (Adlerflug), who was also behind Shimrano when fourth in Hanover's listed contest. Nutan's stablemate Nordic Flight (Adlerflug) comes here on the back of a win in the June 6 listed Iffezheimer Derby-Trial at this distance at Baden-Baden and gets the William Buick treatment as he flies in for the day...

Graham Motion confirmed that Sam-Son Farms' homebred Up With the Birds (Stormy Atlantic) will be shipped in from his Fair Hill, Maryland, base to run in next Saturday's Arlington H. (G3) -- the course and distance prep for the August 15 Arlington Million (G1). Previously with trainer Malcolm Pierce and based in his native Ontario, the 2013 Canadian Horse of the Year was fourth in last year's Million. "He's doing very well right now and coming for the Arlington Handicap," Motion said. "The Million is the goal with him and we've built our plans around that. I think the owners wanted to have an American campaign with him. So, if they're going to do that, he should probably be based in America." In his debut for his new barn, Up With the Birds finished an extremely wide-trip third in the May 16 Dixie (G2) at Pimlico. "He's not a flashy horse in his work, but he got a lot out of his run at Pimlico," Motion said. "All things considered, it was a very good effort." The trainer confirmed that Drayden Van Dyke, who was aboard Up With the Birds for the first time in the Dixie, will fly in to ride...

Ike and Dawn Thrash and Janet and Sam Alley's Amira J (Sky Mesa) stamped herself as a juvenile to watch with a facile 14-length victory Friday at Arlington. The Mike Stidham pupil covered five Polytrack furlongs in :58. "We picked her at Keeneland and she's the long, scopey type that we like," Ike Thrash said. "We don't have many who can win at five furlongs, so this is nice. We had one who was like this, Third Dawn, who lost the Santa Anita Oaks (G1) by an inch. We like the ones with reach and we bought nine this year, which is a lot more than usual. The other day we worked her with Katie's Eyes (Leroidesanimaux), who we want to take to the Breeders' Cup. Katie's Eyes really couldn't go by her -- and this is an unraced two-year-old -- so we figured she was probably pretty tough today. We will likely either go to the Sorrento ([G2] at Del Mar on August 12) or the (Arlington-Washington) Lassie (on August 29). You hate to move them when they go that well on the surface (like Polytrack). It's always a question if they'll take to dirt, but we'll wait and see how she comes out of the race and talk to Mike (Stidham). Probably one or the other. We have no idea if she will like the dirt. I don't think a Sky Mesa would have trouble with dirt and we did well at Del Mar last year with the ones we took there."...

Multiple stakes queen White Rose (Tapit), a closing fifth most recently in the New York (G2), has been installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite in Sunday's $100,000 River Memories at Belmont Park. Junior Alvarado rides the Bill Mott-trained mare. Sheepshead Bay (G2) runner-up Maxomova (Danehill Dancer) is among the seven distaffers that will cover 1 1/2 miles on the Widener Turf course and Manny Franco will be up for Christophe Clement. Goldy Espony (Vespone) merits consideration for trainer Chad Brown following a comfortable victory over allowance/optional claiming foes on May 8 and picks up the services of Kendrick Carmouche...

For many who are still celebrating American Pharoah's (Pioneerof the Nile) Triple Crown sweep, jockey Victor Espinoza will be the biggest attraction in the Smile Sprint S. (G2) and other races during Gulfstream Park's Summit of Speed program on Sunday. Espinoza, who has had a whirlwind public appearance schedule since guiding American Pharoah to a commanding and historic victory in the Belmont S. (G1) on June 6, has six mounts on the day at Gulfstream and is scheduled to sign commemorative posters prior to Sunday's card...

Thoroughbred racing economic indicators for June showed across-the-board declines. Wagering on U.S. races, including worldwide commingled wagering, equaled $925,512,755, a miniscule drop of 0.23 percent over last June's $927,683,726 total. U.S. purses declined 7.30 percent, from $104,516,868 to $96,884,024, while June 2015 race days of 497 recorded a 5.87 decrease on June 2014 races days of 528. U.S. races fell 7.86 percent, from 4,225 in June 2014 to 3,893, while U.S. starts declined 8.30 percent, from 31,368 to 28,763. Year-to-date numbers also all dropped. Wagering declined 0.52 percent, from $5,507,622,288 to $5,479,192,872; U.S. purses fell 3.72 percent, from $513,423,392 to $494,340,164; U.S. race days declined 4.32 percent, from 2,386 to 2,283; U.S. races were off 5.83 percent, from 19,969 to 18,805; and U.S. starts dropped 3.68 percent, from 150,232 to 144,699. Second quarter results showed the only increase and that came in the wagering. Wagering on U.S. races rose 3.52 percent, from $2,951,674,063 in 2014 to $3,055,547,544 for the comparable period in 2015. All the other numbers dropped. U.S. purses fell 2.10 percent, from $297,979,123 to $291,707,804; U.S. race days declined 2.98 percent, from 1,410 to 1,368; U.S. races decreased 4.55 percent, from 11,600 to 11,072 ;and U.S. starts were off 4.32 percent, from 86,277 to 82,550.

Power King survives inquiry to take Durban July

In what seemed like a flashback to this day last year, when Wylie Hall (Redoute's Choice) was disqualified from the win in the Durban July (SAf-G1) after interfering with Legislate (Dynasty) in the lane, Power King (Silvano) had to survive an inquiry.

This time, however, the fortunes played in the favor of the first-past-the-post in South Africa's richest race.

Sneaking into the July with the co-lowest weight in the field and largely dismissed by punters, Power King traveled midpack and off the fence through the opening stages of the 2200 meter event. Behind a wall of horses before the field fanned across the track at the top of the lane, Power King drifted toward the outside, hooking up with Puntas Arenas (Silvano) to his outside passing the 150 meter mark. The winner held that rival at bay to the line and was permitted to keep the race after examination by stewards.

Power King was tried in top-class company during his sophomore campaign, but after off-the-board finishes in the Cape Guineas (SAf-G1) and Cape Derby (SAf-G1) he was dropped back in class, and enjoyed two confidence-boosting scores at the Group 3 level last May. He filled the bridesmaid's role in his next five outings, finishing second or third on each occasion, before faltering to seventh behind Futura (Dynasty) when trying Group 1 company again in the prestigious J&B Met on January 31.

Second in the non-black type Cape Mile on February 21, he at last found the winner's circle again in Scottsville's Pinnacle S. on March 29, and was second in the Betting World 1900 (SAf-G3) in the lead-up to this.

Power King led home a remarkable trifecta Saturday for his champion sire Silvano -- who stands at Andreas Jacobs's Maine Chance Farms, which also bred the top three finishers -- in the Western Cape.

One race following the Durban July in the Garden Province S. (SAf-G1), Same Jurisdiction (Mambo in Seattle) saved ground early near the back of the pack, charged up the inside in the lane and won under mostly hand-urging from a fast-finishing Smart Call (Ideal World).

This time last year, Same Jurisdiction was in the midst of a four-race win streak that saw her prove herself at the highest level in the Thekwini S. (SAf-G1) over Saturday's track-and-trip. She opened her sophomore campaign with a win again over this course and distance on January 2, but had her streak snapped February 28 when fifth in the Gauteng Fillies Guineas (SAf-G2) in her first start outside Durban.

Second in Turffontein's S A Fillies Guineas when stepped up to 1800 meters, Same Jurisdiction was second back here in the 1400 meter Tibouchina S. (SAf-G2) on June 6.

Seventh Plain, winner of the May 23 Gold Medallion S. (SAf-G1) and Godolphin Barb S. (SAf-G3) prior to that, cemented his status atop his division with a last-gasp victory in the Golden Horseshoe (SAf-G1) while also providing trainer Dennis Drier with the juvenile Group 1 double.

Fastest from the gates, Seventh Plain crossed over to save ground on the short run into the first bend and stalked the pace about two lengths off the lead. The dark bay briefly appeared to have too much to do to catch the free-wheeling frontrunner Arabian Beat (Black Minnaloushe) in early stretch, but he capitalized as that rival began to tire in the final 50 meters, getting up to score by a narrow margin.

Seventh Plain has now won three straight and four of five overall, his lone loss coming in the listed Summer Juvenile S. at Kenilworth on January 31.

Chestnuts N Pearls (Horse Chestnut) began Drier's juvenile double in the Golden Slipper (SAf-G1). Traveling a bit keenly in about fourth in the early part of the race, the bay miss hit the lead near the stand's side rail at the 150 meter mark and drew away to win cozily.

Chestnuts N Pearls was a first-out winner going six furlongs at Scottsvile on April 5, but dropped back to eighth when stepped up in class for the Allan Robertson Championship (SAf-G1) over the same track and trip on May 23 before stretching out an extra panel in the Golden Slipper.

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Euro Charline passes gate test, on track for Falmouth

Last year's Beverly D. S. (G1) winner Euro Charline (Myboycharlie), scratched behind the gates after failing to load for the Duke of Cambridge S. (Eng-G2) at Royal Ascot, has passed a gate test and is on track for the July 10 Falmouth S. (Eng-G1) at Newmarket.

"What happened at Royal Ascot came completely out of the blue as, apart from on her two-year-old debut, she has never had an issue (with the stalls)," trainer Marco Botti explained. "So she was forced to miss a race that we had been aiming at for a long time, but it might end up working to our advantage as she will go to the Falmouth as a fresh horse.

"It has been a bit of a rush to get her a stalls test, as you usually have to wait for two weeks, but she did one last week and walked straight in, without a blindfold or any help, and I hope that she will be just the same on Friday."

The four-year-old Euro Charline will be making her first public appearance since a fourth in the March 28 Dubai Turf (UAE-G1) at Meydan, which was her first outing since the Beverly D. last August.

"I thought that she ran really well in Dubai considering that it was not the plan to make the running -- she just broke too well and ended up getting a bit lit up," Botti said of the Team Valor colorbearer. "With some cover she would have finished much closer."

Those still in the mix for the Falmouth include Duke of Cambridge winner Amazing Maria (Mastercraftsman); last year's dual French classic winner Avenir Certain (Le Havre); Group 2-winning and classic-placed Lucida (Shamardal); and Group 2 scorer Fintry (Shamardal).

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Results

NORTH AMERICAN NON-GRADED STAKES RESULTS

ACHIEVEMENT S., WO, $119,296, 3YO/UP, 6F, 7-4.
9—CALGARY CAT, g, 5, Cowtown Cat--Big Sink Star, by A.P. Indy. ($40,000 '11 FTKOCT). O-Chesney, Stephen and Hoffman, Cory S, B-WinStar Farm, LLC (ON), T-Kevin Attard, J-Eurico Rosa Da Silva, $71,577.
8—Phil's Dream, g, 7, Philanthropist--Dream A Dream (GB), by Emperor Jones. O-Buttigieg Training Centre, B-Paul Buttigieg (ON), $23,859.
4—Speightsong, c, 4, Speightstown--Song of the Lark, by Seeking the Gold. O-Sam-Son Farm, B-Sam-Son Farm (ON), $11,930.
Also Ran: Bear No Joke, Star Contender, Kitten Candy, Sparrowhawk, San Nicola Thunder.
Winning Time: 1:08 4/5 (ft)
Margins: HF, 1, NK.
Odds: 0.80, 4.40, 7.40.
 
CHARLIE BARLEY S., WO, $90,983, 3YO, 1MT, 7-4.
4—SAMUEL DECHAMPLAIN, g, 3, Henrythenavigator--Forestry's Magic, by Forestry. O-Eaton Hall Farm, B-Eaton Hall Farm (ON), T-Michael J. Doyle, J-Emma-Jayne Wilson, $57,262.
5—Flashaway, c, 3, Eskendereya--Call Me Fleet, by Afleet. ($100,000 '13 KEESEP; $500,000 2014 FTFMAR). O-John C Oxley, B-Dell Ridge Farm, LLC (KY), $15,906.
2—Decision Day, c, 3, Macho Uno--Cry of the Wild, by Unbridled's Song. ($40,000 2014 OBSAPR). O-Donver Stable, B-Donver Stable (ON), $10,498.
Also Ran: U S Marshal, Crown Prince, Phil's Cocktail, Seventhfleethumor.
Winning Time: 1:34 3/5 (fm)
Margins: HF, 2, 1 1/4.
Odds: 16.75, 0.85, 7.65.
 
ELKWOOD S., MTH, $83,500, 3YO/UP, 1MT, 7-4.
7—KHARAFA, g, 6, Kitalpha--Exquisite Cassie, by King of Kings (IRE). O-Braverman, Paul and Pinch, Timothy, B-Highmeadow Farm (NY), T-Timothy A. Hills, J-Paco Lopez, $45,000.
6—Lochte, g, 5, Medaglia d'Oro--Lemon Kiss, by Lemon Drop Kid. ($475,000 '11 FTSAUG; $60,000 2013 FTNOCT). O-Crossed Sabres Farm, B-Maura Gittins (KY), $15,000.
5—Inchcape, h, 5, Indian Charlie--Cottage Link, by Seeking the Gold. O-Mr Amore Stable, B-Eugene Melnyk (ON), $7,500.
Also Ran: Cement Clement, Rose Brier, Fredericksburg, Two Notch Road, Plainview, Mr. Online, Paris Vegas, Mellow Fellow.
Winning Time: 1:34 1/5 (fm)
Margins: NK, NK, HD.
Odds: 1.20, 12.20, 5.60.
 
DANIEL STEARNS CLEVELAND GOLD CUP S., TDN, $75,000, 3YO, 1 1/8M, 7-4.
3—ALLISEEISGOLD, c, 3, Purge--Braun 'n Gold, by Forestry. O-Beechwood Racing Stable LLC and Capehart Equine, B-Beechwood Racing Stable (OH), T-Sharon Ruberto, J-Mario G. Pino, $45,000.
4—Sunshine's Son Bob, g, 3, After Market--Li'lbito'sunshine, by Dixieland Heat. ($20,000 '13 FTKOCT). O-Keys to Riches Stable, B-Sparks View Farm (OH), $15,000.
1—Signal Ridge, c, 3, Cactus Ridge--Check the Math, by Unaccounted For. O-Allen, Lowell F and Bourke, W John, B-Lowell F Allen (OH), $7,500.
Also Ran: Flip Daddy, Awesome Artie, Boot Legger, Astro J.
Winning Time: 1:53 1/5 (ft)
Margins: 6 3/4, NK, 6HF.
Odds: 0.40, 7.80, 9.20.
 
PRINCESS ELAINE S., CBY, $60,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1 1/16MT, 7-3.
7—AARON'S BELT, m, 7, Barkerville--Dark Sands, by Desert Classic. O-Gregory H Weir, B-George L Weir III (MN), T-Gregory H. Weir, J-Eddie Martin, Jr., $36,000.
4—Dear Fay, m, 6, Ghazi--Frances Geraldine, by Nordic Legend. O-Bo Vujovich, B-Bo Vujovich (MN), $11,400.
10—B J's Angel, m, 5, Stormy Business--Demiparfait, by Demidoff. O-Astar Thoroughbreds LLC, B-Astar Thoroughbreds, LLC (MN), $6,000.
Also Ran: Talkin Bout, Thunder and Honey, It's Tamareno, Fiona Cat, Gypsy Melody, Stellabrini, Blues Edge, Sky and Sea.
Winning Time: 1:43 (fm)
Margins: 3/4, 1HF, 1 3/4.
Odds: 43.10, 3.80, 7.30.
 
BLAIR'S COVE S., CBY, $60,000, 3YO/UP, C/G, 1 1/16MT, 7-3.
6—A P IS LOOSE, g, 4, Monarchos--Masquerade Star, by Stalwart. O-Joel Zamzow, B-Joel Zamzow (MN), T-McLean Robertson, J-Alex Canchari, $36,000.
4—Bourbon County, g, 5, Dehere--Bourbon Blues, by Seeking the Gold. O-Rake Farms LLC, B-Scott Allen Rake (MN), $11,400.
7—Lil' Apollo, g, 5, Added Edge--Lil' Mo' Rhythm, by Little Missouri. O-Alice Theisen, B-Alice Theisen (MN), $6,000.
Also Ran: Ragged Edge, Two Chance, Sheer Trick, Speed Is Life, Vanderbilt Beach, Evert, Affirmed Cure, Hansboro.
Winning Time: 1:44 3/5 (fm)
Margins: 1, HD, 3/4.
Odds: 2.00, 2.20, 21.20.
 
FRANCES GENTER S., CBY, $60,000, 3YO, F, 6F, 7-4.
4—SILVER MAGNA, f, 3, Magna Graduate--Silver Spree, by Cuvee. O-Ulwelling, Al and Bill, B-Al Ulwelling & Bill Ulwelling (MN), T-Michael E. Biehler, J-Denny Velazquez, $36,000.
5—Shaboom, f, 3, U S Ranger--Chasin Mason, by Barkerville. O-Dorothy Erban, B-Dorothy Erban (MN), $12,000.
3—Sioux Appeal, f, 3, Successful Appeal--Devil Not Me, by Devil His Due. O-Jeff Larson, B-Jeff Larson (MN), $6,600.
Also Ran: North Sky, Gold Cup Skier.
Winning Time: 1:11 1/5 (ft)
Margins: 2HF, 6 1/4, HF.
Odds: 6.60, 0.30, 3.80.
 
VICTOR S. MYERS S., CBY, $58,200, 3YO, C/G, 6F, 7-4.
2—HOLD FOR MORE, g, 3, Hold Me Back--Miners Mirage, by Mining. O-Dale Schenian, B-Wood-Mere Farm (MN), T-Francisco Bravo, J-Dean P. Butler, $36,000.
1—Keith's Legacy, g, 3, Langfuhr--Good Conduct, by Two Punch. O-Curtis A Sampson, B-Curtis A Sampson (MN), $12,000.
5—Chris Mars, g, 3, Forestry--Bourbon Blues, by Seeking the Gold. O-Rake Farms LLC, B-Scott Allen Rake (MN), $6,600.
Also Ran: Prayintheprairie.
Winning Time: 1:11 3/5 (ft)
Margins: 6HF, 1 3/4, 11HF.
Odds: 0.30, 2.90, 10.00.
 
PURPLE VIOLET S., AP, $53,700, 3YO, F, 1M, 7-4.
5—WILDWOOD KANTHAROS, f, 3, Kantharos--My Felina, by El Corredor. ($12,000 '13 OBSAUG). O-William Stiritz, B-Brinker Hill Farm, Inc (IL), T-Scott Becker, J-Christopher A. Emigh, $31,576.
8—Lovely Island, f, 3, Arch--Lovely Isle, by Double Honor. O-Brinker Hill Farm, B-Brinker Hill Farm, Inc (IL), $10,525.
4—Speak Up Sailor, f, 3, Midshipman--Speak Up, by Unaccounted For. ($65,000 2014 OBSAPR). O-Good Times Stable, B-Pete Mattson (IL), $5,789.
Also Ran: Tizgorgeous, Scatladybdancing, Devil's Rose, Timeaday.
Winning Time: 1:39 3/5 (ft)
Margins: 1HF, 2HF, 1.
Odds: 7.50, 8.00, 2.10.
 
ELLIS PARK TURF S., ELP, $50,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1M, 7-4.
11—HAUNTED HEROINE, f, 4, Ghostzapper--Mona Mia, by Monarchos. ($40,000 '12 KEESEP). O-Sanders, Wayne and Hirsch, Larry, B-Phoenix Rising Farms (KY), T-W. Bret Calhoun, J-Brian Joseph Hernandez, Jr., $30,000.
13—Impeached, f, 4, Northern Afleet--Best Judgement, by Demons Begone. O-Jeffrey D Stoddard, B-Mr & Mrs William T Griffin (WA), $10,000.
6—Femme Fatale, m, 5, Distorted Humor--Imagine, by Giant's Causeway. ($125,000 2013 FTKNOV). O-Elm Racing LLC, B-Padua Stables, LLC (KY), $5,500.
Also Ran: Tipthetrolleygirl, She's Not Here.
Winning Time: 1:35 1/5 (ft)
Margins: 2, 2 3/4, 1 3/4.
Odds: 0.60, 7.10, 6.00.
 
RUSSELL AND HELEN FOUTZ DISTAFF H., SRP, $45,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6 1/2F, 7-4.
9—DIABOLICAL DAME, f, 3, Diabolical--Vipervapor, by Devon Lane. ($25,000 '13 RUIAUG). O-Brooks, Joe Dee, Bryant, Scott and Hubbard, Derrol, B-Fred Alexander, Todd Fincher & Brad (NM), T-Todd W. Fincher, J-Aldo Arboleda, $27,000.
10—Back Seat Roll, m, 5, Roll Hennessy Roll--Back Seat Charm, by Silver Charm. O-Robison, J Kirk and Judy, B-Judy & J Kirk Robison (NM), $9,000.
5—Funnyoushouldask, m, 7, Reuben--Funny Girl, by El Gran Senor. O-Terrine G Ransier, B-TNJ Farms LLC (NM), $4,500.
Also Ran: Traders Pride, Soaring Dea, Hot News Girl, Applelina, Tylers Dixie Chick, Park Lane Lass, Stormin Creek.
Winning Time: 1:17 3/5 (ft)
Margins: 2HF, 3 3/4, 2HF.
Odds: 0.80, 7.10, 7.40.

Racing Headlines

Lady Tiana crowned in Lancashire Oaks; Waady triumphs in Sprint

Bred by the Pakenhams -- who enjoyed so much of the limelight with the sire Sir Percy in 2005 and 2006 -- Lady Tiana (Sir Percy) has ascended the heights gradually under the auspices of the Newmarket-based Lucy Wadham and continued her journey with a three-quarter length victory in Saturday's Lancashire Oaks at Haydock.

Lady Tiana was ridden with confidence by Graham Lee, who had failed to get the gaps in her last one and, after racing under cover in sixth throughout the early stages, was still cruising behind the leaders on the rail approaching the quarter-pole. Traveling clear best but remaining in a pocket as Miss Marjurie (Marju) was committed out wide a furlong later, she managed to ride her luck here and, under mainly hands and heels, was able to roll to the lead 75 yards out and on to an ultimately snug success.

Lady Tiana has not looked back since graduating over an extended mile at Nottingham last April and, ironically, it was back at that track that she signaled that she was ready for more than handicaps when impressing over 10 furlongs in October. She duly won in her first try at black-type in the listed Gillies Fillies' S. in her three-year-old finale at Doncaster the following month.

Both of those efforts came on testing ground, but the bay has since proven that she is more than just a mudlark and followed a promising sixth in Chantilly's Prix Allez France (Fr-G3) staying over 1 1/4 miles April 27 with a third to Miss Marjurie in the Pinnacle S. (Eng-G3) over this track and trip last out on May 30.

"It was a fantastic ride from Graham, as she has to be ridden like that and he kept his nerve," Wadham commented after greeting her first group winner. "We thought we were unlucky in the Pinnacle and she has a potent turn of foot, but you have to wait until the last minute to use it.

"She'll probably have a little holiday now, as she doesn't like fast ground and the end-of-season target will be the (October 17) British Champions Fillies & Mares S. ([Eng-G1] at Ascot) with maybe one run before that."

At Sandown on Saturday, Waady (Approve) scored in the Sprint S. (Eng-G3) on the Eclipse (Eng-G1) undercard.

Restrained as usual by Paul Hanagan, the hooded bay was keen early in sixth against the rail before being angled out to challenge approaching the last furlong. Surging to the front with 100 yards to race shortly after Wind Fire (Distorted Humor) had been muscled through a non-existent gap toward his inside, which resulted in her rider Oisin Murphy receiving a nine-day ban, Waady was pushed out to assert.

"He's very talented, but needs things to drop right, which they did there although my saddle slipped right back," Hanagan explained. "It started to shift about two down, but I was lucky.

"(Trainer) John (Gosden) has done a great job, as he was a breeze-up horse and he has that in him. If he wasn't sweating, I'd be worried and he is improving."

Like his stablemate Western Hymn (High Chaparral, Waady has a distinct liking for Sandown and delivered another of his late shows to extend his unbeaten record here and earn a first pattern-race success. The form of his third win from three visits to this venue had received a major boost after Profitable (Invincible Spirit), who had finished two lengths behind him in the June 13 listed Scurry S., had run so well when fifth in Royal Ascot's Commonwealth Cup (Eng-G1), and his task was made seemingly easier with the withdrawal of the classy filly Mecca's Angel (Dark Angel) on account of the lively ground.

"I think you've got to consider the (August 21) Nunthorpe S. ([Eng-G1] at York)," Gosden noted. "He's won a Group 3; I know that's a Group 1 which is a titanic leap, but you've got to consider it."

France

Baghadur (Zanzibari) was held on to early by Mickael Barzalona with only one behind, was outpaced at times, but stayed on strongly down the outside to reel in his barnmate De Treville (Oasis Dream) in the final 50 meters of Saturday's Prix de la Porte Maillot (Fr-G3) at Longchamp.

Having mastered subsequent dual group scorer Almanaar (Dubawi) in a 7 1/2-furlong conditions event on Chantilly's Polytrack in November, Baghadur ran third in similar events over a furlong shorter and at the former trip on that surface at Deauville in December and in his three-year-old bow on March 6 before adding to his tally going a mile back at Chantilly on April 8.

Reverting to 6 1/2 furlongs when opening his black-type account in the listed Prix Marchand d'Or at Maisons-Laffitte on June 11, he continued his progress by leading home De Treville on Saturday in a renewal dominated by the sophomores.

Germany

The homebred Anna Katharina (Kallisto) arrived in Saturday's Hamburger Stuten-Preis (Ger-G3) off a second in the June 6 listed Iffezheimer Derby-Trial at Baden-Baden and asserted for the early lead after a sharp break. Holding sway until stoked up as the pack loomed large off the home turn, she kept on strongly under a drive inside the final 300 meters to win going away for a career high.

Fifth in her only juvenile start at Hannover last October, Anna Katharina ran second at Dusseldorf in her April 12 sophomore return before graduating in a Cologne maiden in her penultimate start on May 10.

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Results

NORTH AMERICAN ALLOWANCE RESULTS

BEL, 4TH, AOC, $99,960, 4YO/UP, 1 1/16M, 7-4.
5—MATROOH, g, 5, Distorted Humor--Rockcide, by Personal Flag. ($550,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Shadwell Stable, B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY), T-Chad C. Brown, J-Irad Ortiz, Jr., $61,200.
3—Catholic Cowboy, g, 5, Heatseeker (IRE)--Kombat Lake, by Meadowlake. ($12,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Mossarosa, B-Luis de Hechavarria (FL), $20,400.
1—Wealth to Me, g, 8, Tapit--Wealthy Belongings, by Belong to Me. O-Drawing Away Stable and Jacobson, David, B-Robert & Vickie Mondun (KY), $10,200.
Winning Time: 1:42 1/5 (ft)
 
BEL, 5TH, AOC, $96,000, 3YO/UP, 7FT, 7-4.
7—READY FOR RYE, g, 3, City Zip--Embroidery, by More Than Ready. ($70,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Chalk Racing, B-Soc Agr Santa Elena de Chimbarongo LTDa (KY), T-Thomas Albertrani, J-Javier Castellano, $57,600.
6—Barrel of Love, g, 8, Not for Love--Wide Barrel, by Broad Brush. O-Diane Balsamo, B-Tri County Stables (NY), $19,200.
11—Los Borrachos, c, 4, Pulpit--Champagne Taste, by Distorted Humor. O-Brous Stable LLC and Wachtel Stable, B-Preston Madden (KY), $9,600.
Winning Time: 1:20 4/5 (fm)
 
BEL, 2ND, ALW, $90,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6 1/2F, 7-4.
5—JUBILANT VISION, f, 4, Pollard's Vision--Kneel, by Pulpit. ($30,000 '12 KEESEP; $15,000 2014 KEENOV). O-David Jacobson, B-R Alex Rankin & Louis Wright (KY), T-David Jacobson, J-Cornelio H. Velasquez, $54,000.
6—Elraazy, f, 3, Malibu Moon--Major Wager, by Valid Wager. ($330,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Shadwell Stable, B-Siena Farms LLC (KY), $18,000.
1—Predicate, f, 4, Congrats--Pelicus Affair, by Pentelicus. ($75,000 '11 KEENOV; $160,000 '12 KEESEP; $200,000 2013 FTFMAR). O-Reddam Racing LLC, B-William Arvin Jr, Crosshaven Bloodstock & Gabriel Duignan (KY), $9,000.
Winning Time: 1:17 (ft)
 
BEL, 3RD, ALW, $90,000, 3YO/UP, 1 1/16MT, 7-4.
8—BIGGER PICTURE, g, 4, Badge of Silver--Glory Dancer, by Honour and Glory. O-Antonino Miuccio, B-Kenneth L & Sarah K Ramsey (KY), T-Linda Rice, J-Cornelio H. Velasquez, $54,000.
5—Adirondack Dancer, g, 6, Dixieland Band--Camargo (IRE), by Brief Truce. ($30,000 '10 FTNAUG). O-Whitehall Stable, B-Akindale Farm LLC (NY), $18,000.
6—English Minister, g, 5, English Channel--Groovy Minister, by Deputy Minister. O-Fitzhugh LLC, B-Fitzhugh, LLC (MD), $9,000.
Winning Time: 1:41 2/5 (fm)
 
MTH, 10TH, ALW, $51,200, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6F, 7-4.
5—LOVE CAME TO TOWN, f, 3, Medallist--Talkin About Love, by Not for Love. O-Gerald F Sleeter, B-Kevin Sleeter (NJ), T-Kevin G. Sleeter, J-Elvis Trujillo, $29,184.
2—She's Hot Wired, f, 4, Cable Boy--Diablo's Number, by Diablo. O-Lawrence Dilione, Jr, B-Colonial Farms (NJ), $10,240.
4—World Gone Wright, f, 4, Forty Grams--It's a Storm, by Storm Boot. O-Smith Robert G and M and G Stables LLC, B-Saronda Smith, Alan Pesch (NJ), $6,144.
Winning Time: 1:11 1/5 (ft)
 
MTH, 5TH, AOC, $48,420, 3YO/UP, F/M, A5 1/2FT, 7-4.
6—BILLYSCRYSTALBALL, m, 5, Park Avenue Ball--Lord Billy, by Lord Carson. O-Sacco, Joan and Nick, B-Hidden Acres 4-D Farm (NJ), T-Michael S. Mullin, J-Abel Castellano, Jr., $31,920.
7—Double the Energy, m, 6, Unbridled Energy--Double Doubleville, by Mt. Livermore. ($8,500 '10 FTMOCT). O-Harriet J Harvatt, B-Cheryl A Prudhomme & Dr Michael T Gallivan (NY), $8,000.
5—Sunrise Kitty, m, 5, Cowtown Cat--Sunrise Slew, by Seattle Slew. O-Dennis A Drazin, B-Dennis A Drazin (FL), $4,000.
Winning Time: 1:04 2/5 (fm)
 
WO, 9TH, OCL, $48,383, 3YO/UP, 1 1/16MT, 7-4.
3—KINGSPORT, c, 3, Milwaukee Brew--Green Jewel, by Green Dancer. ($45,000 2014 OBSJUN). O-Goldmart Farms and Royal Laser Racing Inc, B-Richard Moylan (ON), T-Sid C. Attard, J-Patrick Husbands, $30,396.
1—Best Country, g, 4, Best of the Bests (IRE)--Concert Country, by Concerto. O-Roger Laurin, B-Laurin Stable Inc (ON), $10,132.
4—Osculator, g, 6, Grand Reward--Amfar from Sweet, by Farma Way. O-Marc Berzins, B-Marc Berzins (KY), $3,482.
Winning Time: 1:41 1/5 (fm)
 
LRC, 7TH, AOC, $47,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 5 1/2F, 7-3.
5—MARYNETTA, m, 7, Noverre--Alaana's Song (AUS), by Unbridled's Song. O-Mathis, Andy, Panian, Len and Thompson, Shane, B-Trevor Roberts (CA), T-Andy Mathis, J-Flavien Prat, $27,600.
4—Miss Loujean, f, 4, Unusual Heat--Tempting Date, by Perfect Mandate. O-Craigmyle, Keith E and Lewis, Paul C, B-Adam & Paul Lewis (CA), $9,200.
3—Codacious, f, 3, Desert Code--Tea Cakes, by Moscow Ballet. O-Waller, Eric M and Sharon J, B-Eric M & Sharon J Waller (CA), $5,520.
Winning Time: 1:03 (ft)
 
LRL, 8TH, ALW, $46,032, 3YO/UP, 5 1/2F, 7-4.
5—ON SPIRIT RIVER, g, 3, In Summation--Ennuhway, by Notebook. ($32,000 2014 OBSAPR). O-Kobza, Curt and Jagger Inc, B-Ocala Stud (FL), T-Jamie Ness, J-Jevian Toledo, $23,940.
4—Team Tim, g, 3, Sharp Humor--Kissemilie, by Broken Vow. ($24,000 '13 FTMSEP). O-Gary Hacker, B-Two Legends Farm (MD), $11,466.
1A—Troubled Waters, g, 4, Giant's Causeway--Sincerely, by Meadowlake. O-R Larry Johnson, B-Larry Johnson (KY), $6,006.
Winning Time: 1:05 (sy)
 
GP, 5TH, AOC, $39,200, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6F, 7-4.
4—MISS DARLA, m, 5, Montbrook--Tricky Faces, by Phone Trick. ($12,000 '10 OBSOCT; $11,000 2012 OBSAPR; $5,500 2012 OBSJUN). O-Peter Mattson, B-Erwin Janet (FL), T-Jose Garoffalo, J-Harry Hernandez, $24,400.
6—Emerald Citadelle, f, 3, Bustin Stones--Citadelle, by Dixie Brass. O-Spielman, Michael and Minott, Leon, B-Amy Boll (NY), $7,560.
3—Benne First Baby, f, 4, Benny the Bull--First Wife, by Private Terms. O-Alex Kazdan, B-Judy Karlin (FL), $4,360.
Winning Time: 1:11 (ft)
 
OTP, 7TH, ALW, $36,576, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1 1/16M, 7-3.
5—PRODICIOUS FACTS, f, 3, Giant's Causeway--In Truth, by Quiet American. ($100,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Hollendorfer, Jerry and Todaro, George, B-J Mike & James Lauffer & Poplar Hill Equine LLC (KY), T-Jerry Hollendorfer, J-Russell A. Baze, $21,000.
4—Miss Forty Niner, f, 3, Eskendereya--Miss Forest City, by Coronado's Quest. ($45,000 2014 OBSAPR). O-Eaton, James A, Finch, Peter, Huarte, Judith and Hess, Sr Robert B, B-Runnymede Farm Inc & Catesby W Clay (KY), $7,000.
1—Mon Petite, f, 4, Papa Clem--Avranches (FR), by Jeune Homme. O-Campbell, Gillian S, Clark, Dan, Hollendorfer, Jerry and Skoda, Greg, B-Barry Abrams, Madeline Auerbach & Marie Goda (CA), $5,460.
Winning Time: 1:43 2/5 (ft)
 
DEL, 6TH, AOC, $36,125, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1M 70Y, 7-4.
5—SAWYER, f, 4, Into Mischief--Song, by Unbridled's Song. ($1,200 '11 KEENOV; $22,000 '12 KEESEP). O-Goodwood Racing IV, B-Peter E Blum Thoroughbreds, LLC (WV), T-Jane Cibelli, J-Carol Cedeno, $21,600.
7—Cool Faith, f, 4, Pulpit--Ambitious Cat, by Storm Cat. O-Chiefswood Stable, B-Chiefswood Stables Limited (ON), $7,200.
1—Acquant, f, 4, Giant's Causeway--Social Queen, by Dynaformer. O-Richard Santulli, B-Colts Neck Stables LLC (KY), $3,960.
Winning Time: 1:42 (ft)
 
DEL, 8TH, ALW, $36,087, 3YO/UP, 1 1/16M, 7-4.
1—BLUFF, c, 3, Tapit--Ermine Slippers, by El Prado (IRE). ($250,000 '13 KEESEP). O-Fox Hill Farms, Inc, B-Double K, LLC (KY), T-J. Larry Jones, J-Kerwin D. Clark, $21,000.
5—Centering, g, 4, Rock Hard Ten--Quies, by Quiet American. O-Lael Stables, B-Mr & Mrs M Roy Jackson (KY), $7,000.
2—Presidental Colors, h, 7, Changeintheweather--Snow Diva, by Cornish Snow. O-Lonnie C Crowell, B-Lonnie C Crowell (AR), $4,812.
Winning Time: 1:45 (ft)
 
CBY, 5TH, ALW, $35,000, 3YO/UP, 5FT, 7-4.
2—VOODOO SPELL, g, 4, Roar of the Tiger--Charm Spell, by Silver Charm. ($3,500 '12 OBSAUG). O-Hugh H Robertson, B-Big C Farm (FL), T-McLean Robertson, J-Seth B. Martinez, $21,000.
6—Castletown, g, 7, Orientate--Kelly Mac, by Thunder Gulch. O-Mercedes Stables LLC, B-Mercedes Stables, LLC (KY), $7,000.
7—Rockin Home, g, 4, Rocky Bar--Jungle Girl, by Forest Camp. O-Tamara Metzen, B-Triple AAA Ranch (AZ), $3,850.
Winning Time: :55 4/5 (fm)
 
PEN, 4TH, ALW, $33,689, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1MT, 7-3.
4—SARA THE GREAT, f, 4, Greatness--Che Sara Sara, by Golden Act. ($10,000 2014 OBSJAN). O-Leonard Rubacha, B-Edward A Seltzer & Beverly Anderson (PA), T-Alisa Brooke Sarson, J-Emilio Flores, $21,240.
10—Amelia Mar, m, 5, Corinthian--Vecchia Cita (CHI), by Winning. ($22,000 2012 OBSAPR). O-Steven D Keil, B-Brian M Villardito (KY), $5,900.
3—Rare Mix, f, 4, Partner's Hero--Gemini's Gem, by Gemini Dreamer. O-Jonathan E Sheppard, B-Jonathan Sheppard (PA), $3,894.
Winning Time: 1:37 3/5 (gd)
 
EVD, 8TH, AOC, $33,500, 3YO/UP, 1M, 7-3.
7—HOPEFUL NOTION, g, 5, Notional--Hope For, by Rahy. ($25,000 '10 KEENOV). O-Autumn Hill Farms Racing Stables, Inc, B-Heumann-Suchke Enterprises LLC (LA), T-Edward J. Johnston, J-Colby J. Hernandez, $20,100.
1—Valse, g, 5, Brahms--Two to Waltz, by Seattle Slew. ($50,000 '11 TEXAUG). O-Emile Barras Farms LLC, B-Emile J Barras Farms Stables LLC (LA), $6,700.
4—Salty Jim, g, 5, Salute the Sarge--Silky Oaks, by Regal Intention. O-Michelle Morrison, B-Southern Equine Stables, LLC (LA), $3,685.
Winning Time: 1:38 2/5 (ft)
 
GP, 9TH, AOC, $32,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6F, 7-4.
2—TAR AND FEATHER, f, 3, Awesome of Course--Precious Feather, by Gone West. O-Jacks or Better Farm, Inc, B-Jacks or Better Farm Inc (FL), T-Stanley I. Gold, J-Eddie Castro, $19,200.
1—Turnout, m, 6, Trippi--Fiddle, by Pine Bluff. O-Amaty Racing Stables, B-J V Shields Jr (FL), $6,720.
7—Pursuing Fate, f, 3, In Summation--Flirting With Fate, by Saint Ballado. ($100,000 2014 OBSAPR). O-Get Away Farm, B-Best A Luck Farm LLC (FL), $3,520.
Winning Time: 1:11 (ft)
 
CBY, 5TH, AOC, $32,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1M 70YT, 7-3.
1—ZUBI ZUBI ZU, f, 4, Any Given Saturday--Between the Clouds, by Sky Classic. ($2,500 '12 FTKOCT). O-Hatfield, Christine and Hatfield, Phil, B-Nancy S Dillman (KY), T-Michael Stidham, J-Denny Velazquez, $19,200.
6—Zipso Facto, m, 5, City Zip--Banner Day, by A.P. Indy. ($18,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Calvin L Johnston, B-G Watts Humphrey Jr & W S Farish (KY), $6,400.
3—Melody Lin, m, 5, Curlin--Melody Que (IRE), by Sadler's Wells. ($70,000 '10 KEENOV). O-Midwest Thoroughbreds, Inc, B-Mt Joy Stables (KY), $3,520.
Winning Time: 1:41 1/5 (fm)
 
CBY, 7TH, AOC, $32,000, 3YO/UP, 1M 70YT, 7-3.
6—WARONTHEHOMEFRONT, g, 7, War Front--Suena Cay, by Maria's Mon. ($1,500 '09 FTKOCT). O-Ulwelling, Al and Bill, B-E T Buckley, S Varney & A O' Donnell (KY), T-Michael E. Biehler, J-Ry Eikleberry, $19,200.
4—Caribbean Storm, g, 5, Stormy Atlantic--Tres Dream, by Chester House. ($190,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Butzow, Barry and Joni, B-Philip & Brenda Robertson (KY), $6,400.
1—Beyond Compare, g, 5, Tapit--Dancing Alone, by Kingmambo. ($375,000 '11 KEESEP). O-Ulwelling, Al and Bill, B-Peter E Blum Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY), $3,520.
Winning Time: 1:40 (fm)
 
ELP, 6TH, ALW, $30,560, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1M, 7-4.
4—DON'T TELL ME NO, f, 4, Borrego--Misti Moon, by Formal Dinner. O-Brett Bresser, B-Moonbeam Breeding LLC & Brad Scott (KY), T-David Ashcraft, J-Jon Kenton Court, $18,300.
7—Coral Way, f, 4, Smoke Glacken--Camargue, by Mineshaft. ($900,000 '11 KEENOV). O-Three Chimneys Farm and Besilu Stables, B-Palides Investments N V Inc (KY), $6,100.
6—Factory of Faith, f, 3, Bluegrass Cat--Loving Lucy, by Lycius. ($35,000 '13 KEEJAN). O-Allied Racing Stable, LLC, B-Hare Forest Farm and Anne Wrenn Poulson (KY), $3,050.
Winning Time: 1:36 1/5 (ft)
 
PEN, 3RD, AOC, $30,400, 3YO/UP, F/M, 5F, 7-4.
3—PAMPAS ANGEL, f, 4, Indygo Shiner--Roving Angel, by Cape Canaveral. (C$41,000 '12 ONTSEP). O-Rock Bottom Ranch, B-Keith & Rachel McClelland (ON), T-Sandee D. Martin, J-Dana G. Whitney, $18,240.
2—Storming Rage, m, 6, Stormy Atlantic--Cherokee Rage, by Cherokee Run. O-Michael W Jester, B-The Thoroughbred Team, LLC (PA), $6,080.
7—Winning Saga, f, 4, Tale of the Cat--Bird Chatter, by Birdonthewire. O-John Chamatsos, B-Catesby W Clay (KY), $3,344.
Winning Time: :58 (sy)
 
AP, 2ND, ALW, $30,228, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1 1/16MT, 7-4.
4—BE PLAYFUL, f, 4, Pure Prize--Dancing Das, by Rinka Das. O-Team Block, B-Team Block (IL), T-Chris M. Block, J-Florent Geroux, $18,762.
1—Smiling Gambler, m, 7, Wild Gambler--Dance N' Smile, by Chester House. O-Aimee Bohlman, B-Gary D Heien (IL), $7,056.
6—Dance With Kitten, m, 5, Kitten's Joy--Madame Du Lac, by Lemon Drop Kid. O-Pressure Racing LLC, B-Kenneth L & Sarah K Ramsey (KY), $2,425.
Winning Time: 1:44 (gd)
 
CBY, 6TH, ALW, $30,000, 3YO/UP, 6 1/2F, 7-4.
6—TRUE TEN, c, 4, Rock Hard Ten--Truly Blessed, by French Deputy. O-Mercedes Stables LLC, B-Mercedes Stables, LLC (CA), T-Robertino Diodoro, J-Jorge Carreno, $18,000.
4—Flying Frank, g, 3, Congrats--Roman Bluff, by Roman Ruler. ($20,000 '13 OBSJAN). O-Paul Schaffer, B-Three Lyons Racing LLC (KY), $6,000.
5—Sunday Prohibition, g, 3, Any Given Saturday--Prohibido Olividar, by Mister Jolie. ($7,000 '12 KEENOV). O-Curtis A Sampson, B-Breeding a Dream, LLC & Kelly Colliver (KY), $3,300.
Winning Time: 1:18 (ft)
 
TDN, 6TH, ALW, $29,000, 3YO/UP, 5 1/2F, 7-4.
2—CUSABO, g, 7, Wando--Holly Sunset, by Mining. O-Ronald Clark, B-Edward A Rudley (KY), T-Gerald E. Brooks, J-Jeffrey Skerrett, $17,400.
5—Moon Traveler, g, 6, Malibu Moon--Deputy Cures Blues, by War Deputy. ($325,000 2011 OBSMAR). O-Hays, Billy, Hays, Donna and Hays, Justin, B-John R & Martha Jane Mulholland (KY), $5,800.
7—Sin City Weekend, g, 4, City Weekend--Case Adia, by Gold Case. O-C L M Racing LLC, B-Connie Pass, Penny Ricketts & Nancy Oshier (IN), $2,900.
Winning Time: 1:04 4/5 (ft)
 
FL, 7TH, ALW, $22,202, 3YO/UP, 6F, 7-4.
1—FRISKY WARRIOR, g, 6, Desert Warrior--Let's Roll Lady, by Maria's Mon. O-Ralph D'Alessandro, B-Ted Taylor Thoroughbreds (NY), T-Ralph D'Alessandro, J-Jaime Rodriguez, $13,380.
6—Sundae On Sunday, h, 6, Chief Seattle--Sundae Bride, by Runaway Groom. O-Stone Bridge Farm and Very Un Stable, B-Joe Gioia & Jeffrey Tucker (NY), $4,460.
5—Crackerjack Jones, g, 5, Smarty Jones--Confidently, by Storm Cat. O-Broman, Sr, Chester and Mary, B-Chester & Mary R Broman (NY), $2,230.
Winning Time: 1:10 1/5 (ft)
 
SRP, 7TH, ALW, $22,100, 3YO/UP, 6 1/2F, 7-4.
1—SILVERHILL, g, 3, Silver City--Indian Nation, by Pleasant Tap. O-Herron, Jackie and Sylvia, B-Clarence Scharbauer Jr (TX), T-Justin R. Evans, J-Alfredo J. Juarez, Jr., $13,260.
4—Sams Blue Cat, g, 4, Bluegrass Cat--Cut the Mustard, by Double Honor. ($35,000 '12 OBSAUG; $52,000 2013 OBSAPR). O-Cunningham, Brian and Regan, Edmund, B-Glencrest Farm LLC (KY), $4,641.
6—Roman Pleasure, g, 4, Roman Ruler--Sharaiji Blossom, by Saint Ballado. ($12,000 '12 KEESEP). O-Cugnini, Duane and Hinkel, Sherron, B-Liberty Road Stables (KY), $2,210.
Winning Time: 1:17 2/5 (ft)
 
FMT, 4TH, ALW, $21,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 4F, 7-3.
5—LAINY'S SWEETNESS, f, 4, Omega Code--Lainy'sagolddigger, by Desert Royalty. O-Ra-Max Farms LLC, B-Misty Meadows Farm (OK), T-Theresa Sue Luneack, J-Travis Cunningham, $12,250.
1—Sassy Songbird, m, 6, Crafty Song--Here 'n' Sassy, by Dehere. O-Dena Thomas, B-Joyce Tackett & John D Wartchow (OK), $4,550.
2—Me n' Dixie, m, 5, Master Command--Dixieland Squall, by Summer Squall. ($8,400 '11 OKCAUG). O-Tracy L Van Horn, B-John E & Barbara R Smicklas Living Trusts (OK), $2,625.
Winning Time: :45 3/5 (ft)
 
LS, 1ST, ALW, $21,000, 3YO/UP, F/M, 7 1/2FT, 7-4.
7—WHIMISCAL MISS, f, 4, Sasha's Prospect--Devout Sinner, by Tricky Creek. O-V Joan Charlton, B-Joan Charlton (OK), T-Brent W. Charlton, J-Lindey Wade, $12,480.
5—Tea for Two, f, 3, Valid Expectations--Bridal Tea, by Gulch. ($25,000 '13 TEXAUG). O-Whitelaw, Michael and Veal, Gerald and Brody, B-W S Farish, BCWT, LTD & Inwood St (TX), $4,160.
4—Debutante Belle, f, 3, Badge of Silver--Northern Deputy, by Deputy Commander. O-H V Farms, Ltd, B-H V Farms, Ltd (KY), $2,288.
Winning Time: 1:29 4/5 (fm)
 
BTP, 7TH, ALW, $19,500, 3YO/UP, F/M, 6F, 7-4.
2—DIXIE ZIP, f, 4, City Zip--Park View, by Quiet American. ($47,000 '12 KEESEP). O-Robert Alvin Reeves, B-Langsem Farm, Inc (OH), T-Mark E. Thomas, J-John McKee, $11,700.
3—Star's Thalia, m, 5, Long Star--Caldwell Belle, by Northern Flagship. O-Larry J Eilers, B-Larry Eilers (OH), $3,900.
4—Zipziparoo, m, 5, City Zip--Roo Roo, by Meadowlake. O-Langsem Farm, Inc, B-Langsem Farm, Inc & Leslie Stone (OH), $1,950.
Winning Time: 1:11 4/5 (ft)
 
FMT, 3RD, ALW, $19,200, 3YO/UP, 6F, 7-4.
4—S C BLUE MOSS, g, 4, Preachinatthebar--Carson City Angel, by Carson City. O-Tracy L Van Horn, B-Tracy Van Horn (OK), T-Marissa Black, J-John Keith Lejeune, $11,146.
1—Secret in the City, g, 4, City of Peace--Miss Joetta, by Harriman. O-Gary Null, B-A R Null (OK), $4,142.
(DH) 3—Screamin Mushroom, g, 5, Portobello Road--Angel in Command, by Deputy Commander. O-Judy Fires, B-Robert Yagos (AR), $1,352.
(DH) 5—Durtdobbr, g, 3, Flying Baron--Staying at Home, by Eavesdropper. O-Donald G Trett, B-Donald G Trett (OK), $1,992.
Winning Time: 1:13 3/5 (ft)
 
FL, 3RD, ALW, $19,200, 3YO/UP, F/M, 1M, 7-4.
1—MY WILD GATA, m, 5, Wild Desert--Gata Veloz, by Tomorrows Cat. O-Jeffrey S Englehart, B-S Goldfarb, M Dubb, I Davis, HighGrade Racing Stable & I Goldfarb (NY), T-Jeffrey S. Englehart, J-Rodolfo Ignacio, $11,520.
3—Little Gabby Girl, m, 5, Desert Warrior--Kawajlain, by Claramount. O-Mitre Box Stable, B-Lamarca Stables (NY), $3,840.
2— Bonaventure Magic, m, 5, Aragorn (IRE)--Navarro Rose, by Native Prospector. O-Bona Venture Stables, B-Samuel, Noah & Sidney Simon & Susan Kayne & Robert Raphaelson (NY), $2,112.
Winning Time: 1:41 3/5 (ft)

Racing Headlines

Quartet of competitive stakes on Queen's Plate undercard

Katie's Eyes looks to extend her winning streak to five in the Highlander (Coady Photography)
Sunday's C$1 million Queen's Plate is supported by four other stakes on the Woodbine card, three of them on the turf.

The C$200,000 Highlander (Can-G2) could have Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G1) implications. Trainer Michael Stidham is already thinking along those lines with Katie's Eyes (Leroidesanimaux), who brings a four-race winning streak versus distaffers into this tilt against males. Victorious in the April 11 Giant's Causeway over the same Keeneland course and 5 1/2-furlong trip as this year's Turf Sprint, Katie's Eyes extended her skein last time in the May 9 Unbridled Sidney at Churchill. The four-year-old filly gets in with a feathery 114-pound impost here, including new rider Patrick Husbands.

The past two winners of the Highlander are back, defending champion Something Extra (Indian Charlie) and Go Blue or Go Home (Bluegrass Cat), who hasn't won since his romp in the 2013 edition that was rained off the turf.

Something Extra, the 123-pound highweight, is in sparkling form. The Gail Cox veteran wired the April 4 Shakertown (G3) in his reappearance, beating Channel Marker (Purim), eventual Diamond Jubilee (Eng-G1) hero Undrafted (Purim) and Australian import Power Alert (Alert). Something Extra didn't confirm the form when third to Power Alert and Undrafted in the May 1 TwinSpires Turf Sprint (G3) and second to Channel Marker in the June 6 Jaipur (G3), but that remains a strong profile to bring into this race.

Mosler (War Front) also comes out of the Jaipur, where he was sixth after having to alter course around the ill-fated Helwan. Considering that the $1.05 million Keeneland September yearling had previously landed the seven-furlong Elusive Quality at Belmont, the Bill Mott pupil could find the stiffer six furlongs at Woodbine more to his taste.

Wesley Ward sends out the other distaffer in the Highlander, Shrinking Violet (Congaree), who will carry 118 pounds owing to her victory in the January 4 Monrovia (G2) at Santa Anita. The five-year-old mare has run just once in the interim, rallying for a dead-heat third in the May 16 The Very One at Pimlico. Shrinking Violet was unplaced in her only prior stakes attempt versus males in the 2014 Shakertown, but her subsequent eight-month holiday suggests that wasn't a true bill.

Sharp Sensation (Sharp Humor), who upset Maryland icon Ben's Cat (Parker's Storm Cat) in last September's Turf Monster (G3), has not raced since his second in the November 23 Kennedy Road (Can-G2) on the local Polytrack. Rounding out the field is Reflector (Ready's Image), the winner of two straight in Louisiana, who has since returned to Pavel Matejka ahead of his Woodbine debut.

Chad Brown sends Watsdachances to the Dance Smartly... (Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club)
Although it would be too simplistic to reduce the C$200,000 Dance Smartly (Can-G2) and the C$150,000 Singspiel (Can-G3) to a Mark Casse versus Chad Brown show, the two trainers have strong hands in both races.

In the 1 1/8-mile Dance Smartly for fillies and mares, Casse is doubly represented by last-out Nassau (Can-G2) heroine Sky Treasure (Sky Mesa) and by Industrial Policy (Harlan's Holiday), a troubled fifth in last year's Dance Smartly.

Brown, who trained Industrial Policy earlier in her career, relies on Watsdachances (Diamond Green). Fourth in the Flower Bowl Invitational (G1) in her 2014 finale, the ever-honest mare opened this season with a smooth success in the May 16 Gallorette (G3) at Pimlico.

Among the others are a pair of champions in Solid Appeal (Successful Appeal) and Habibi (Ekraar). Solid Appeal has won only once since taking the 2013 Dance Smartly in her Sovereign Award campaign, and trainer Reade Baker has opted to put the blinkers back on. Former New Zealand champion Habibi, who beat the boys in her homeland's Derby (NZ-G1) in 2013, is a fascinating contender. Beaten in her three tries in Southern California, she missed by a nose to Smartyfly (Smart Strike) in her first Woodbine outing, and could have still more to offer.

Mark Frostad has cross-entered Habibi to the 1 1/2-mile Singspiel versus males, where she would face Casse's Canadian turf champion Dynamic Sky (Sky Mesa) and Hyper (Victory Gallop) from the Brown barn.

Dynamic Sky earned a divisional Sovereign Award largely on the strength of his placings behind Euro shippers in last fall's Northern Dancer Turf (Can-G1) and Canadian International (Can-G1) at this course and distance. Out of luck since capturing the November 15 Red Smith (G3), the John C. Oxley runner cuts back in trip off a third in the two-mile Belmont Gold Cup Invitational June 5.

...and Hyper to the Singspiel (NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)
Hyper was in the form of his life in 2013, garnering the Bowling Green H. (G2) and closing smartly for second in the Canadian International (his only previous Woodbine appearance). Sidelined for nearly 18 months, the now eight-year-old resurfaced with a commendable third in the May 9 Man o' War (G1). He could do no better than eighth next time in the 1 1/4-mile Manhattan H. (G1), but the combination of a hike in distance and a drop in class should suit.

Possibly overlooked is defending champion Aldous Snow (Theatrical), who left Dynamic Sky back in third in the 2014 Singspiel. Winless in the interim, the Malcolm Pierce charge is nonetheless rounding into form for this third start of the season.

The stakes action kicks off with the C$150,000 Clarendon S. for Ontario-bred juveniles at 5 1/2 furlongs. The Casse-trained Beliveau (Where's the Ring) is the one to beat after passing the post first in both starts. A 5 1/4-length debut winner over the Polytrack, he switched to turf for the Victoria and prevailed by a head, only to be disqualified for interference.

Also exiting the Victoria is fourth-placer Get'erdonebud (Kentucky Bear), who likewise captured his debut convincingly on the Polytrack and figures to enjoy reverting to his original surface. Hey Bear (Kentucky Bear) and Bright Light (Judiths Wild Rush) were first and second, respectively, in a June 17 maiden over the track. The remaining five entrants are all first-time starters.

Bet Horseracing Free Online at TwinSpires.com

North American Maiden Winners
Awesome Gambler--Suite Sue Etta by Souvenir Copy; BESWICK, f, 2, NP, Mcl 20000, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:07 4/5. B-Terry C. Lovingier (CA.). $1,200 2015 BESJAN.
Leroidesanimaux (BRZ)--Such a Sweet Girl by Proud and True; MISS METROPOLITAN, f, 2, WO, Msw, 7-4, 5f, :58 4/5. B-Brad Auger & Ron Bacon (ON.). $90,000 '14 FTSAUG.
Magna Graduate--I Dream of Erica by Affirmed; DREAMOFHONOR, f, 2, LAD, Msw, 7-4, 4 1/2f, :52 3/5. B-Channon Farm, LLC (LA.). $1,500 '14 ESLSEP; $52,000 2015 ESLAPR.
Northern Afleet--Itsadouble G Thing by Arch; ELLI MAE WIN, f, 2, CBY, Msw, 7-3, 5f, 1:00 1/5. B-Curtis Sampson (MN.).
Old Topper--Humphreyette by Pole Position; AZURE BAY, f, 2, OTP, Mcl 32000, 7-3, 5 1/2f, 1:06 2/5. B-Pooli Thoroughbreds (BC.). C$20,000 '14 BRCSEP.
Private Gold--Dances On Water by In Excess (IRE); GOLD RUSH DANCER, c, 2, EMD, Msw, 7-4, 5f, :58 3/5. B-John Parker (CA.).
Stormy Atlantic--Dharma Girl by French Deputy; CAKE BABY, f, 2, CBY, Msw, 7-4, 5f, :58 3/5. B-Mercedes Stables LLC (KY.).
Street Boss--Smooth Kitten by Holy Bull; UNDISPUTED, f, 2, LRC, Msw, 7-4, 5f, :57 2/5. B-Milan Kosanovich (FL.). $55,000 '14 KEEJAN; $450,000 2015 OBSMAR.
Tale of Ekati--Prayfromthewordgo by Songandaprayer; PAYNES PRAIRIE, c, 2, BEL, Msw, 7-4, 5f, :58 3/5. B-McKathan Bros. (FL.).
Badge of Silver--Volver (IRE) by Danehill Dancer (IRE); XENIA ONATOPP, f, 3, MD, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:12 4/5. B-John D. Gunther, Eurowest Bloodstock Services & Nicole Gunther (KY.). $8,500 '13 KEESEP; $4,500 2014 OBSJUN.
Cause to Believe--Deliarose by Williamstown; TEQUILA NIGHT, f, 3, NP, Mcl 7000, 7-4, 6 1/2f, 1:20 3/5. B-Wes Hanson (AB.). C$5,000 '13 ALBOCT.
Closing Argument--Extremely Lucky by Best of Luck; SOLDIER BLUE, g, 3, PRM, Msw, 7-4, 6f, 1:12 4/5. B-Gary Bergsrud (IA.).
Devil His Due--Spot of Beauty by Skip Away; BEAUTIFUL DEVIL, f, 3, BTP, Msw, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:07 2/5. B-Patchen Wilkes Farm, LLC (KY.).
El Roblar--Newburg by Sky Mesa; PROVABLE, g, 3, SRP, Mcl 7500, 7-3, 4 1/2f, :52 4/5. B-Dennis E. Weir (AZ.).
Flashstorm--Lady Buckpasser by Touch Gold; PASSINAFLASH, c, 3, LRC, Mcl 20000, 7-3, 1m, 1:36 4/5. B-Northwest Stud (FL.). $90,000 2014 OBSJUN.
Forestry--Lacie Girl (G1P$314,390), by Editor's Note; REBEL ROAD, g, 3, HP, Msw, 7-3, 5 1/2f, 1:08 4/5. B-Robert Gorham & Mast Thoroughbreds LLC (IN.). *1/2 to Lacie Slew (SW $259,642).
Ghostzapper--Swept Bayou by Dynaformer; KANSAS QUEEN, f, 3, ELP, Mcl 16000, 7-4, 7f, 1:24 . B-South Point Farm LLC (KY.).
Graeme Hall--Marine Gardens by Tomorrows Cat; STEPBYSTEPDELCOCO, g, 3, ARP, Msw, 7-4, 6f, 1:13 . B-Guillermo Morales (FL.). $5,700 2014 OBSJUN.
Harlan's Holiday--Kassidy's Kiss by Belong to Me; INCIDENTAL KISS, f, 3, EVD, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:12 . B-Morris B. Floyd, Mike Bowling, Greg Ginter & Mike Eaves (KY.). $80,000 '13 FTKJUL.
In Summation--That's So Funny by Yes It's True; FRANKIE'S TRIGGER, g, 3, GP, Mcl 10000, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:05 1/5. B-Lybby F. & Ronald B. Gay (FL.). $16,000 '13 OBSAUG; $52,000 2014 OBSAPR.
Jet Phone--Pete's Five by Arch; PHONE ME, g, 3, LS, Msw, 7-3, 1 1/16m, 1:49 4/5. B-John Silverthorne Ranch, Inc. (TX.).
Kings Blood (IRE)--Proud Owney by Proud Truth; PROUD ROYAL, c, 3, CBY, Msw, 7-4, 7 1/2fT, 1:29 4/5. B-Winchester Place Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY.).
Kiridashi--Stach the Cash by Golden Missile; STRICTLY CASH, f, 3, NP, Mcl 7000, 7-4, 6 1/2f, 1:21 3/5. B-J & G Murphy Holdings Ltd. (AB.).
Latent Heat--Our Guardian Angel by Exploit; TOUCHBYANANGEL, g, 3, PRM, Mcl 30000, 7-3, 6f, 1:12 4/5. B-Dave McShane (IA.).
Lone Star Special--Minacious by Valid Expectations; LITTLE ROUND TOP, f, 3, EVD, Mcl 15000, 7-3, 5 1/2f, 1:06 2/5. B-Tigertail Ranch, Kim Love & Robin Co (LA.).
Medaglia d'Oro--Prospective Saint (G3$485,725), by Saint Ballado; CARAJILLO, c, 3, MTH, Msw, 7-4, 1 1/16m, 1:44 2/5. B-Siena Farms LLC (KY.).
Mineshaft--Cacciadiavoli (IRE) by Danehill; SUNSPOT BABY, f, 3, WO, Mcl 10000, 7-4, 6 1/2f, 1:18 3/5. B-Sean Fitzhenry (ON.).
Mr. Sekiguchi--Diplomatic Angel by Valid Appeal; SIG K, f, 3, FP, Msw, 7-4, 6f, 1:15 . B-Bridlewood Farm (FL.). $4,000 '12 OBSOCT. *1/2 to Tropic Storm (G1P $397,805).
Nationhood--La Mariah by Country Light; HOODSLIDE, g, 3, EMD, Msw, 7-3, 1m, 1:38 . B-Tom & Becky L. Birklid (WA.). $10,000 '13 WASAUG.
Not Bourbon--Loch Tay by Rahy; BOURBON BOUND, g, 3, LS, Mcl 6250, 7-3, 6f, 1:13 4/5. B-Charles Fipke (ON.). $17,000 '13 KEESEP.
Parker's Storm Cat--Franny Girl by Slewdledo; MAMOO'S CAT, g, 3, GRP, Msw, 7-3, 5 1/2f, 1:10 4/5. B-James Craig (OR.).
Pioneerof the Nile--Philadelphia Blues by Wild Again; SISTER BLUES, f, 3, DEL, Msw, 7-4, 6f, 1:11 3/5. B-Lucky Seven Stable (KY.). *1/2 to Moyer's Pond (G2P $454,141).
Preachinatthebar--Rock's El Dorado by Rock Band; ROCKINATTHEBAR, g, 3, GRP, Msw, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:09 4/5. B-Don Young (OR.).
Private Gold--Creme (CHI) by Somersham; WICKEDIZASWICKEDUZ, f, 3, EMD, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:10 1/5. B-Richard T. Beal (WA.).
Read the Footnotes--E. Ticket by Langfuhr; BOLD PRINT, f, 3, BEL, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:11 2/5. B-Dutchess Views Farm, Inc. (NY.). $55,000 '13 FTNAUG. *1/2 to Leilani's Ticket ($340,305).
Ready's Image--Speedy Gladys Jam by Golden Missile; AWESOME LOOK, f, 3, PRM, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:13 . B-Donald L. Downing (IA.).
Run Production--Speedy Amanda by Groovy; SPEED PRODUCTION, g, 3, LAD, Msw, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:05 3/5. B-Frank C. & James M. Serio (LA.).
Saint Stephen--Silver Seven by Silver Deputy; SASSY SILVER, f, 3, LBG, Msw, 7-4, a6f, 1:12 2/5. B-Bar None Ranches Ltd. (AB.). *1/2 to Silver Baubles (MSW $282,410).
Square Eddie--Ann Summers Gold by Yankee Victor; SHALLOT, f, 3, LRC, Mcl 20000, 7-3, 5 1/2f, 1:04 . B-Reddam Racing LLC (CA.).
Stephen Got Even--Mrs. Debbie M by War Chant; U ROCK ROBIN, f, 3, BTP, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:13 2/5. B-Susan King (OH.).
Stroll--Cataballerina by Tabasco Cat; ZIPI ZAPE, g, 3, GP, Msw, 7-4, 1mT, 1:36 3/5. B-Nuckols Farm, Inc. (KY.). $35,000 '13 KEESEP. *1/2 to Lemon Chiffon (MG2P $282,109).
Tailfromthecrypt--She's the Bomb by Bold Ego; THEBIGBOMBLOOKER, g, 3, SRP, Mcl 8000, 7-4, 6 1/2f, 1:18 2/5. B-Gerald E. Marr (NM.).
Tapit--Emtyazat (GB) by Gone West; ESTIQAA, g, 3, ELP, Msw, 7-4, 1m, 1:36 2/5. B-Shadwell Farm, LLC (KY.).
Tapit--Ask Me No Secrets (G3), by Seattle Slew; TO YOUR HEALTH, c, 3, MTH, Msw, 7-4, 1 1/16mT, 1:43 . B-Earl H. Shultz (KY.). $260,000 '13 KEESEP.
Temple City--Sprig of Broom by Rahy; BROOM BROOM, f, 3, ELP, Mcl 5000, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:04 4/5. B-Eric & Brooklyn Foster (IN.).
War on Gaza--Dreams at Sunset by Sky Classic; TEPU WAR, c, 3, TDN, Mcl 5000, 7-4, 6f, 1:13 2/5. B-Frank Sansano (ON.). ***FIRST WINNER FOR SIRE.
Yesbyjimminy--Lucky Wish by Lucky Lionel; LUCKBYJIMMINY, g, 3, GIL, Mcl 3500, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:09 2/5. B-Mari George (FL.). $12,000 '13 OBSAUG; $5,000 '13 OBSJAN; $7,000 2014 OBSJUN.
Yesbyjimminy--Valliant Dancer by Valiant Nature; CLOWNEY, g, 3, MTH, Mcl 10000, 7-4, 6f, 1:12 1/5. B-Marion G. Montanari (FL.). $7,500 '12 OBSOCT; $30,000 '13 OBSAUG.
Copelan's Pache--Got My Goat by Shadeed; GO AUTUMN GO, f, 4, SRP, Msw, 7-4, 4 1/2f, :52 1/5. B-Douglas Lee (NM.).
Finality--Catz (IRE) by Catrail; CATZANOVA, g, 4, OTP, Mcl 25000, 7-3, 1m 70y, 1:44 3/5. B-Mr. & Mrs. R. J. Bennett (BC.).
Harbor the Gold--Heavenhelpmyheart by Knight in Savannah; HEARTS HARBOR, g, 4, EMD, Mcl 5000, 7-4, 5 1/2f, 1:05 . B-Rosie Simkins (WA.).
Lucky Pulpit--Sunny Outcome by Cee's Tizzy; HEAVENLY HAZE, g, 4, LRC, Msw, 7-3, 6f, 1:10 1/5. B-Harris Farms (CA.).
Mr. Scotty--Civilizations Awry by Minstrel Dancer; SCOTTY'S EGO, r, 4, WO, Mcl 16000, 7-4, 6f, 1:11 1/5. B-Bruno Schickedanz (ON.).
Pure Prize--Markofclass by Benchmark; LEON ROBERT, g, 4, AP, Mcl 25000, 7-3, a1mT, 1:42 1/5. B-Renee & Wayne Catalano Racing Stable, Ltd. (IL.).
Sardegna--Once a Princess by Once Wild; CREATURE OF LUXE, f, 4, DEL, Mcl 6000, 7-4, 1 1/16m, 1:49 4/5. B-Bruno Schickedanz (FL.).
Stonecoldbroke--Sign of the Times by Gilded Time; PORTENT, g, 4, PRX, Mcl 10000, 7-4, 5f, 1:01 . B-Hope Hill Farm (PA.).
Surf Cat--Little Boss Chick by Arch; EDDIE WOULD GO, g, 4, EMD, Mcl 5000, 7-3, 6 1/2f, 1:18 2/5. B-Headley, Lenner, A. Molasky (CA.).
Swissle Stick--Ghost Ship's Lady by Ghost Ranch; SWISSLE SHIP, g, 4, SRP, Msw, 7-3, 4 1/2f, :51 3/5. B-Mike Cadotte (NM.).
Tiz Wonderful--Incredible Me by Mt. Livermore; NEW YORK JACKIE, f, 4, GP, Mcl 20000, 7-4, 1 1/16mT, 1:45 . B-J. Herbener & P. Van Andel (KY.). $20,000 '11 KEENOV; $6,500 2014 OBSJUN.
Fusaichi Pegasus--She's Fancy Free (MSW$353,032), by Peteski; PASTAFAGIOLI, g, 5, PRX, Mcl 25000, 7-4, 1 1/16mT, 1:45 3/5. B-Anthony Merlino (PA.).
Lawyer Ron--Pass Me the Salt by Salt Lake; TAKIT WITHA GRAIN, g, 5, OTP, Mcl 5000, 7-3, 6f, 1:13 . B-Stonewall Farm Stallions, LLC (KY.). $9,000 '10 KEENOV.
Flatter--Wonderful by Olympio; WITH WONDER, m, 6, LRL, Mcl 8000, 7-4, 7f, 1:27 3/5. B-Dr. & Mrs. A. Leonard Pineau (MD.). *1/2 to Mazella (G3P $274,529).
Market Forecast--Swan River Daisy by Gumboy; MARKET DISPLAY, g, 6, LA, Mcl 3500, 7-3, 4 1/2f, :52 4/5. B-Madera Thoroughbreds (CA.). *1/2 to Real Temptation (SP $266,868). ***FIRST WINNER FOR SIRE.
Salt Lake--Lace Dancer by Irish River (FR); SALT OF THE EARTH, g, 6, NP, Mcl 7000, 7-3, 1m, 1:41 2/5. B-Larry Mabee (CA.). $9,000 2011 BESJAN. *1/2 to Beautiful Balance ($297,606).
Sasha's Prospect--Gracie Blue by Marfa; BLUE SUE, m, 6, FP, Msw, 7-4, 1m, 1:45 . B-Wayne Charlton (OK.).
Gold Alert--Dancing Fire (FR) by Dancing Spree; NO DANCING AROUND, m, 8, GIL, Msw, 7-4, 6f, 1:16 2/5. B-Gentry Farms (TX.).

Racing Headlines

Main Sequence returns to defend United Nations title

Main Sequence could etch his name alongside such legends as Round Table and Manila (Carl Sari/Equi-Photo)
One year ago, dual Eclipse Award winner Main Sequence (Aldebaran) began his inexorable march through the U.S. turf scene by capturing his American debut in the $500,000 United Nations (G1) at Monmouth. On Sunday, the Niarchos Family's homebred returns in the same spot, hoping to re-start his 2015 campaign after a disappointing loss in Dubai.

Main Sequence is unbeaten in five U.S. starts for trainer Graham Motion, all accomplished with his flair for a dramatic, up-in-time finish. Off for eight months after his repatriation from Europe in the winter of 2013-14, he resurfaced in the 2014 United Nations and flew late to deny Twilight Eclipse (Purim). His ensuing victories in the Sword Dancer Invitational (G1), Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational (G1) and Breeders' Cup Turf (G1) earned him not only an Eclipse Award as champion turf male, but also the champion older male crown.

After reappearing triumphant in the February 21 Mac Diarmida (G2) at Gulfstream, where he defeated Twilight Eclipse for the fifth straight time, Main Sequence carried high hopes into the March 28 Dubai Sheema Classic (UAE-G1). But he faded after a wide trip, and a middle move, and wound up seventh.

Main Sequence was freshened upon his return home, and Motion has been pleased with his recent works at Fair Hill.

"He is a very professional horse and is always straightforward," Motion said. "He's had no problems since coming back from Dubai.

"Both workouts have looked good. I could've ran him a few weeks ago, but wanted to put him in the best spot possible."

Regular rider Rajiv Maragh will be back aboard as Main Sequence breaks from post 6 in this 1 3/8-mile "Win & You're In" for the Breeders' Cup Turf. Should he repeat, Main Sequence would join an honor roll of two-time UN winners including Round Table (1957, 1959), Mongo (1962-63), Noble Dancer (1978-79), Manila (1986-87), Sandpit (1995-96), English Channel (2006-07) and Presious Passion (2008-09).

Stablemates Slumber and Big Blue Kitten ran one-two in the Manhattan (NYRA/Coglianese Photography/Adam Mooshian)
In addition to familiar foes Twilight Eclipse and Imagining (Giant's Causeway), Main Sequence will also face the Chad Brown duo of Slumber (Cacique) and Big Blue Kitten (Kitten's Joy) and streaking Southern California shipper Ashleyluvssugar (Game Plan).

Slumber has awakened since joining Brown late last year, with the application of blinkers conjuring up a career-best in the June 6 Manhattan H. (G1) at Belmont. Overlooked at 14-1, the seven-year-old finally earned a big prize when driving to a 2 3/4-length decision over favored stablemate Big Blue Kitten.

Big Blue Kitten, a fellow seven-year-old, seeks to regain the United Nations title he won back in 2013. The Ken and Sarah Ramsey homebred has yet to scale the heights of that campaign, when he also captured the Sword Dancer and missed by a whisker in the Joe Hirsch. The honest and dependable type has nevertheless run well in the interim, and he kicked off 2015 with a convincing score in the May 2 Fort Marcy (G3). But he's got work to do to turn the tables on the resurgent Slumber, as well as Main Sequence, Twilight Eclipse and Imagining.

Since getting away from Main Sequence, turf veterans Twilight Eclipse and Imagining have had mixed results. Imagining left Twilight Eclipse back in third when taking the March 28 Pan American (G2), but was only fifth to that same rival in the May 9 Man o' War (G1). Twilight Eclipse scored a deserved Grade 1 breakthrough on that occasion, only to retreat to seventh last time in the Manhattan.

Ashleyluvssugar, in contrast, is an upwardly mobile four-year-old. Improved markedly since stretching out on the Santa Anita turf, the Peter Eurton trainee brings a three-race win skein including the March 21 San Luis Rey (G2) and May 24 Charles Whittingham (G2). This represents a much stiffer class test, but his gaudy 108 BRIS Speed figure from the San Luis Rey suggests that he could be up to it. Hall of Famer Gary Stevens comes in to maintain the partnership.

Rounding out the field are the Todd Pletcher-trained Divine Oath (Broken Vow), who's got a bit to find on form with these; Sycamore Lane (Artie Schiller), who makes an audacious stakes debut off a pair of allowance wins for Hall of Famer Bill Mott; and recent Ramsey claim Shining Copper (Aragorn), who has the look of a pacemaker for Big Blue Kitten.

Race Day, unraced since Oaklawn, makes his eagerly awaited return in the Salvator Mile (Coady Photography)
One race earlier at Monmouth, Race Day (Tapit) aims to continue his ascent in the handicap division in the $150,000 Salvator Mile (G3).

The Pletcher pupil has won five of his last six, his lone loss in that span a close third to Valid (Medaglia d'Oro) in the February 7 Fred Hooper (G3). The lightly raced four-year-old then successfully invaded Hot Springs, where he battled to a narrow victory in the March 14 Razorback (G3) and drew off commandingly in the April 11 Oaklawn H. (G2). Race Day has been unraced since then, but his bullet works of late imply he's ready. Hall of Famer John Velazquez has the return call.

Other contenders include the aforementioned Valid, who hasn't won since the Hooper and exits a second to the re-opposing Red Vine (Candy Ride) in the local prep, the Majestic Light; Bradester (Lion Heart), runner-up in last year's Salvator Mile to Itsmyluckyday and to Valid in the 2014 Monmouth Cup (G2); and millionaire Pants on Fire (Jump Start), who's eligible to rebound from an uncharacteristic seventh in the June 6 Metropolitan H. (G1).

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Features

INTERNATIONAL FEATURE

JULY 5, 2015

Durbay July Ever-Unpredictable

by Liesl King

Predictable is one thing the Vodacom Durban July (SAf-G1) never is. Once the South African National Anthem is sung and the gates crash open to the roar of the crowd, the formbook flies out the window and absolutely anything can happen.

Yet, after the 2014 running of the race -- where the winner wasn't the winner -- surely 2015 would be a more normal race.

Statistics suggested that a three-year-old would return victorious. After all, they were highly rated, lightly weighted and two of the top three were trained by the soon-to-be-crowned champion trainer Sean Tarry.

Statistics, however, do not take into account that we are not dealing just with numbers, but with nine tons of horseflesh, each with a mind of its own.

As the crowd of about 55,000 looked on in disbelief, the Vodacom Durban July seemed to be experiencing a groundhog day. Once again two horses came together up the home straight, once again there was a scrimmage, once again the objection hooter sounded and once again there was an extremely lengthy delay, with no winner being declared.

The only difference this year is that winning jockey, Stuart Randolph, was having none of it.

Randolph has been part of the riding ranks for 30-odd years, and prior to this race, his most memorable victory was in the 2001 Gold Cup. To win South Africa's most prestigious race is a dream that had long passed him by, and Randolph was just happy to steadily keep adding to his total of roughly 1,600 winners.

Then suddenly, rudely and rather abruptly, he found himself in the lead on a horse that had no intention of stopping.

As the Dean Kannemeyer-trained Power King (Silvano) surged across the line, Randolph still could not quite believe it. Once Randolph realized that he was not dreaming and that he had finally, after three decades in the saddle, won South Africa's most prestigious race, no objection hooter was going to stop him from experiencing the moment to its fullest.

Randolph's smile could have lit up an entire city. He waved, he smiled, and ever so often he patted Power King. Back at the winner's circle, owner Lady Christine Laidlaw had finally arrived and, while she has been fortunate enough to win most of South Africa's biggest races, this one had eluded her.

Finally, after an agonizing 20 minutes or so with a tired Power King circling and his connections waiting, the objection was overturned and the party could start. Owner, trainer and jockey embraced, even wiped away some tears, as silver platters were handed over, sashes were draped, champagne corks popped and fireworks lit up the sky.

It may not have happened quite the way it was meant to, but racing is unpredictable and even 44-year-old journeyman jockeys can win the July.

Racing Headlines

Summit of Speed boasts Work All Week, competitive fields

Work All Week (right) denied defending champion Secret Circle in the 2014 Breeders' Cup Sprint (Wendy Wooley/EquiSport Photos)
Gulfstream Park plays host to the $1.175 million Summit of Speed program on Sunday featuring 12 races, including the $250,000 Smile Sprint S. (G2) and $250,000 Princess Rooney S. (G2) sending runners six furlongs.

Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) hero and Eclipse champion Work All Week (City Zip) figures to be the most accomplished performer in the Smile Sprint while Merry Meadow (Henny Hughes) returns to the site of her Hurricane Bertie S. (G3) tour de force in the Princess Rooney. Each race is a "Win & You're In" to their respective Breeders' Cup sprint divisions for the winners.

Work All Week is seeking a return to the winner's circle after bruising a foot while running second in his 2015 debut, the Aristides S. (G3), on May 30 at Churchill Downs. The six-year-old gelding went 5-1-0 from six starts last year, including victories in the Breeders' Cup Sprint and Phoenix S. (G3), and will be making his Gulfstream bow in this spot under Florent Geroux for trainer Roger Brueggemann.

The homebred chestnut, who is campaigned by Richard and Karen Papiese's Midwest Thoroughbreds, readied for the Smile Sprint with a swift :46 1/5 breeze on June 28 under the Twin Spires, his second straight bullet move after going in :59 2/5 on June 21.

"We weren't looking for him to work that fast, but he did it all on his own," Richard Papiese said. "We hope it's an indication that he is going to run a big race this weekend."

Also of note in the Smile Sprint is Alsvid (Officer), who defeated Work All Week when taking the Aristides by two lengths. The Chris Hartman-trained gelding brings a three-race win streak into the event after taking an allowance/optional claimer in March prior to a three-quarter length score in the Count Fleet Sprint H. (G3) about two weeks later.

Chris Landeros has been aboard for Alsvid's current win streak and retains the mount.

Grande Shores will be competing over his home track in the Smile Sprint, having recorded 13 in-the-money finishes from 16 career tries at Gulfstream. The seven-year-old Jacks or Better homebred seemingly has gotten better with age after his career had been compromised by a chronic digestive disorder that is under control but still demands constant monitoring.

"I know he's going to run his heart out," trainer Stanley Gold said. "There's going to be plenty of speed in it and he'll be coming. I'd rather see it be seven (furlongs) instead of six. He's going to have to be coming faster and start sooner. He's earned the shot. You hate to possibly get overmatched, but I can't say he is overmatched."

Eddie Castro, who rode Grande Shores to a three-quarter length victory in the Parrot Key S. last out, has the call.

Merry Meadow is no stranger to winning at Gulfstream (Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography)
The Princess Rooney takes place one race before the Smile Sprint and has attracted Merry Meadow, who will ship in from New York following a subpar sixth in the seven-furlong Inside Information S. (G2) on March 21.

"It was the distance and the way the race unfolded," trainer Mark Hennig revealed about the Inside Information. "She isn't really one that wants to be up there fighting for the lead. It's not her style. Knowing it was seven-eighths, it was the worst-case scenario. I think for her to get seven-eighths, she has to have an ideal trip, and she had a less-than-ideal trip at a less-than-ideal distance."

The five-year-old bay will cut back to her ideal distance of three-quarters while returning from a more than three-month freshening under Javier Castellano. The two paired up one race after Merry Meadow captured the Sky Beauty S. last November to take both the Sugar Swirl S. (G3) and Hurricane Bertie.

"She's been doing great," Hennig said. "It was the timing, more than anything else, and the distance, and it's on a familiar racetrack. Gulfstream making the accommodations to get there and back helped as well.

"She's always held her form," the conditioner added. "She's never really ever needed any one set track. She's traveled well and run on all kinds of surfaces. She's always been a pretty consistent runner. We were able to give her a little breather after (the Inside Information), and she's always run well fresh."

Earlier on the Summit of Speed program, 10 sophomore colts and geldings will go seven furlongs in the $150,000 Carry Back S. (G3) while nine three-year-old fillies take part in the $150,000 Azalea S. (G3) at the same distance.

Barbados (Speightstown) enters the Carry Back off a more than five-money break, having last been seen recording his third straight win in the Hutcheson S. (G3) over track and distance. The Azalea features the respective top three -- Huasca (Tiz Wonderful), Dogwood Trail (Awescome of Course) and Fond of Sarah (With Distinction) -- from the track and distance Tangelo H. on June 6, as well as Jostle S. vixen Warriorscmoutoplay (Warrior's Reward).

Five other stakes are carded for the day as well. Eight juveniles have been entered in the $75,000 Birdonthewire S. going 5 1/2 furlongs to kick off the stakes action, followed one race later by the fillies equivalent, the $75,000 Cassidy S., which drew nine runners.

The $75,000 Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint attracted a field of nine to go five furlongs on the turf, while the $75,000 Miesque's Approval S. and sister race $75,000 Spook Express S. will each send contestants 1 1/16 miles on the green. The former will see 10 line up while the Spook Express boasts 15, including one main-track only entrant.

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HANDICAPPER'S EDGE is compiled by Bloodstock Research Information Services. This newsletter may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without the prior written permission of the copyright owner. Copyright 2011, Bloodstock Research Information Services. Information as to the races, race results and earnings was obtained from Equibase Company LLC and is utilized herein with the permission of the copyright owner, Equibase Company LLC.

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Racing Headlines

Danish Dynaformer aims to give Attfield record ninth Queen's Plate

Plate Trial winner Danish Dynaformer rates as the 3-1 favorite on the morning line (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Charles Fipke's Danish Dynaformer (Dynaformer), Stronach Stables' Shaman Ghost (Ghostzapper) and Bear Stables' filly Academic (Henny Hughes) head an ultra-competitive field of 14 for the C$1 million Queen's Plate, Canada's most famous horse race, Sunday at Woodbine.

Now in its 156th edition, the Plate is the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America. The classic for Canadian-foaled three-year-olds is held over 1 1/4 miles on the Polytrack.

At the Queen's Plate breakfast on Thursday morning, the selection order for post positions was drawn first via the traditional "pill-pull," followed by the choosing of post positions by the connections for each horse, a system which has been in place for the Plate since 1998.

Danish Dynaformer, one of two (Billy's Star [Perfect Soul] is the other) trained by Hall of Famer Roger Attfield, will try to give his conditioner a record ninth Plate win and has been established as the lukewarm 3-1 morning line favorite. Attfield chose post 7 with the second selection.

The Fipke homebred scored an impressive three-quarter length victory over Conquest Curlinate (Curlin) in the June 14 Plate Trial, his third win in six career starts. It followed a close third place finish to Plate rival Shaman Ghost in the Marine S. (Can-G3) on May 16. Twenty-five Plate Trial winners have gone on to win the King/Queen's Plate since 1944, the last being Big Red Mike in 2010.

"He's a really nice horse, no question about it," Attfield said. "He's got a big turn of foot and a huge cruising speed. He's a very versatile horse."

Attfield is currently tied with Harry Giddings Jr. for most Plate wins. His previous winners were Not Bourbon (for Fipke) in 2008, Regal Discovery (1995), Peteski (1993), Alydeed (1992), Izvestia (1990), With Approval (1989), Market Control (1987) and Norcliffe (1976). Peteski, Izvestia and With Approval all went on to win the Canadian Triple Crown.

Danish Dynaformer will be ridden by Patrick Husbands for the first time, since Luis Contreras, aboard for the Trial, was previously committed to Ami's Flatter (Flatter). Husbands has won the Plate twice, in 2003 with eventual Triple Crown winner Wando, then last year with filly Lexie Lou (Sligo Bay). The last jockey to win back-to-back Plates was Eurico Rosa da Silva in 2009-10, with Eye of the Leopard and Big Red Mike, respectively.

Billy's Star (15-1), with the aforementioned Rosa da Silva, currently Woodbine's leading rider aboard, finished a troubled sixth in the Trial, yet only five lengths behind his stablemate, after breaking his maiden in May at Woodbine over 1 1/16 miles. Also bred by Fipke but now owned by Perfect Timber Partnership, he was a $161,177 Canadian Select yearling purchase.

Shaman Ghost was last seen landing the Marine (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Stronach Stables' homebred Shaman Ghost (7-2) hasn't raced since his winning effort in the 1 1/16-mile Marine, when overcoming traffic with a powerful late stretch charge. Trained by Brian Lynch, Shaman Ghost will be ridden by Rafael Hernandez, who has piloted the colt to three consecutive wins, including the Marine.

"Winning form is the best form and he's won three in a row," said Lynch, who didn't have to pick a post when he drew number 14 in the selection order, and only the rail was left. "He's been doing everything well in those last three, really fighting to the wire in all of them. I like the way he doesn't give up. He just keeps on battling. Hopefully, he brings that same great fight with him to the Plate."

Stronach is a two-time Plate winner (Basqueian, 1994 and Awesome Again, 1997), while Lynch just missed winning the 2008 Plate with Stronach's filly Ginger Brew, finishing a head behind Not Bourbon.

Bear Stables' Academic (5-1), with Justin Stein aboard, scored a 66-1 shocker three weeks ago when wiring her rivals in the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks. It was just the second start of the year for the filly. Her 1 1/8-mile time of 1.48.86 was a track record and almost one second faster than it took Danish Dynaformer to win the Trial a race before. Her connections drew the first post selection and picked post 4.

Academic, the field's leading money winner with $293,141 after being bought for $54,000 at the Ocala Two-Year-Olds In training Sale, will try to become the 36th filly to win the Plate since 1860, the eighth since 1956 and the seventh to sweep both the Oaks and the Plate, joining Flaming Page (1962), La Lorgnette (1985), Dance Smartly (1991), Dancethruthedawn (2001), Inglorious (2011) and Lexie Lou (2014).

Stein rode Strait of Dover to victory in the 2012 Plate, while Bear Stables and trainer Reade Baker, who will also saddle Bear At Last (Marchfield) and Breaking Lucky (Lookin at Lucky), finished third last year with Asserting Bear.

Breaking Lucky (20-1), owned by Gunpowder Farms, broke his maiden at Woodbine in April, then was second and seventh in two subsequent route allowance races. The son of 2010 Preakness (G1) winner Lookin At Lucky will be ridden by Jim McAleney, who has twice finished second in the Plate, aboard I And I in 2000 and Anglian Prince in 2002. Bear Stables' Bear At Last (30-1), a one-time winner in 11 outings to be ridden by Rico Walcott, was most recently seventh in the Plate Trial.

Academic takes on the boys after her track record-setting victory in the Woodbine Oaks (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Queen's Plate winterbook favourite Ami's Flatter (6-1), trained by Josie Carroll for owner-breeder Ivan Dalos, disappointed as the 3-5 favorite in the Marine, finishing seventh, five lengths behind Shaman Ghost. That result came after a competitive run on the Kentucky Derby (G1) trail, which saw him finish second to Carpe Diem (Giant's Causeway) in the Tampa Bay Derby (G1) at Tampa Bay Downs and third to Materiality (Afleet Alex) in the Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park. The field's second leading money winner with $232,231 will be ridden by Contreras from the outside post 14.

Dalos, Carroll and Contreras teamed to finish second with Ami's Holiday (Harlan's Holiday) in last year's Plate. Carroll, though, has won two Plates -- Edenwold (2006) and Inglorious (2011) -- and is the only female trainer to even win the Plate while Contreras was aboard Inglorious for his first Plate score.

Seven-time Sovereign Award-winning trainer Mark Casse, who saddled last year's winner Lexie Lou, will try to win a second consecutive Plate with Conquest Stables' Conquest Boogaloo (Scat Daddy) and Bill and Vicki Poston's Oakton (Macho Uno). The last trainer to win back-to-back Plates was Mark Frostad in 2000-2001.

Conquest Boogaloo (8-1), a $190,000 Keeneland yearling buy, finished a closing troubled third in the Plate Trial, just two lengths behind Danish Dynaformer. He also encountered a difficult trip in the Marine, when eighth to Shaman Ghost. He's won two of seven, including last year's Swynford S., and will be handled by Alan Garcia. Oakton (20-1), a one-time winner in six starts, will be ridden for the first time by Tyler Pizarro, who finished second for Casse in the 2011 Plate aboard Hippolytus.

Chiefswood Stable's homebred Portree (Niigon) (12-1), trained by Stuart Simon and ridden by Gerry Olguin, finished an excellent fourth in the Plate Trial, just 2 1/2 lengths behind winner Danish Dynaformer, after leading in midstretch. It was just his third career start after winning his first two outings earlier this year. He'll try to become the eighth Plate winner since 1956 to be sired/foaled by a Plate winner. Chiefswood won the 2004 Plate with their homebred Niigon.

Trainer Mike Keogh will send out Gus Schickedanz's homebred Sweet Grass Creek (Wando) (20-1), a one-time winner in five starts. Keogh and Schickedanz teamed to win the 1999 Plate with Woodcarver, then captured the Triple Crown with Hall of Famer Wando in 2003. Jesse Campbell, who took the 2013 Plate aboard front-running Midnight Aria, has the mount.

Ami's Flatter, the winter book favorite, looks to restore his reputation (WEG/Michael Burns Photography)
Tucci Stables' Easy Indygo (Marchfield) (30-1), also purchased at the Ocala Two-Year-olds in training sale for $60,000, has won once in seven starts. Tucci Stables' won the 2013 Plate with Midnight Aria, while trainer Nick Gonzalez conditioned both Midnight Aria and 2010 Plate winner Big Red Mike. Jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson is the only female rider to win the Plate in 2007 with Mike Fox.

Canyon Farms' British Columbia homebred Ault (English Channel) (30-1) will try to become the fourth horse since 1952 to break his maiden in the Plate, the latest to do so being Scatter the Gold in 2000. To be ridden by David Moran for trainer Dan Vella, he has been a close second in his three Woodbine Polytrack appearances, but out of the money in two grass attempts at Gulfstream Park this winter.

Canyon Farms won the 2012 Plate with another homebred, Strait of Dover, also a son of English Channel, while Vella, in addition to training Strait of Dover, won the 1994 Plate with Basqueian. Moran finished third in the 2010 Plate aboard Oaks winner Roan Inish.

Preston Stables' Milwaukee Mist (Milwaukee Brew) (30-1) has campaigned at Turfway Park, Keeneland and Churchill Downs, winning one of six starts. Trained by Pavel Matejka, Milwaukee Mist will be ridden by Gary Boulanger, who won the 2001 Plate with Oaks winner Dancethruthedawn.

Of the 14 starters in this year's Plate, 12 have connections (owner, trainer and/or jockey) who have previously won the Plate. Four horses in the field - Breaking Lucky, Milwaukee Mist, Oakton and Portree -- did not start at two. Eye of the Leopard (2009), Scatter The Gold (2000) and Awesome Again (1997) are the latest Plate winners who did not race as two-year-olds.

The Queen's Plate is the first leg in the Canadian Triple Crown. The second leg is the C$500,000 Prince of Wales S., at 1 3/16 miles on Tuesday, July 28, at Fort Erie, while the C$500,000 Breeders' S., at 1 1/2 miles on the grass, August 16 at Woodbine, comprises the third and final leg. There have been seven Triple Crown winners since the concept was inaugurated in 1959, the first being New Providence in 1959, the latest being Wando in 2003.

Since 1956, the stakes record for the Plate is 2:01 4/5, set by Izvestia in 1990, when he also won by the largest margin, 13 lengths. Strait of Dover, the 2012 winner, owns the fastest Polytrack time since 2007 of 2:01.99. The longest-priced winner in the modern era (since 1956) is T J's Lucky Moon ($166) in 2002 while Maternal Pride is the highest-priced winner of all time, paying $193.35 in 1924. Since 1956, favorites have won 22 of 59 runnings (37.2 percent). However, Wando in 2003, and Eye of the Leopard in 2009, are the only Plate favorites to win in the last 20 editions.

Three other stakes, all of them on the grass, will be part of the Queen's Plate Day undercard -- the C$200,000 Dance Smartly (Can-G2), at 1 1/8 miles at 3:02 p.m., the C$150,000 Singspiel (Can-G3) at 1 1/2 miles at 4:18 p.m. and the C$200,000 Highlander (Can-G2) at six furlongs at 4:53 p.m. First race post time is noon.

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In brief

Shadwell Stable's Matrooh (Distorted Humor) out-dueled the returning Samraat (Noble Causeway) and withstood the late bid of Catholic Cowboy (Heatseeker) to capture Saturday's fourth race at Belmont Park, a 1 1/16-mile allowance/optional claiming event worth $102,000. A three-quarters brother to 2003 champion three-year-old male and dual classic winner Funny Cide, the five-year-old gelding stopped the teletimer in 1:42 1/5 on the fast track. Now three for four in the United States for trainer Chad Brown, the lone setback coming to eventual Stephen Foster (G1) winner Noble Bird (Birdstone) in a Keeneland allowance, Matrooh came back from a 16-month layoff at Gulfstream Park in March after making his first five starts in England and is likely stakes-bound. Multiple Grade 3 winner Samraat, making his first appearance since a sixth in the 2014 Belmont Stakes (G1), wound up weakening to fourth...

Despite the loss of the injury-afflicted likely favorite Quasillo (Sea the Stars), Sunday's 146th Deutsches Derby (Ger-G1) at Hamburg still offers an enticing brew with a colt in Shimrano (Monsun) who would be unbeaten were it not for encountering that absent rival. It was in a conditions race over the Derby at Munich on April 19 that Shimrano was put in his place by Quasillo, and the form of that contest was given credence by the winner's subsequent exploits in the Bavarian Classic (Ger-G3). While Quasillo went on the easy list, Australia Racing Stables' Shimrano went on to capture the May 25 listed Grosser Preis der Hannoverschen Volksbank-Derby Trial and Oppenheim-Union-Rennen (Ger-G2) at Cologne on June 14 and lines up with a favorite's chance here. Third in the latter contest was Stall Nizza's Nutan (Duke of Marmalade), who had previously scored by seven lengths over that same track and trip on May 10, and he could be a different proposition here along with Gestut Schlenderhan's Isidor (Adlerflug), who was also behind Shimrano when fourth in Hanover's listed contest. Nutan's stablemate Nordic Flight (Adlerflug) comes here on the back of a win in the June 6 listed Iffezheimer Derby-Trial at this distance at Baden-Baden and gets the William Buick treatment as he flies in for the day...

Graham Motion confirmed that Sam-Son Farms' homebred Up With the Birds (Stormy Atlantic) will be shipped in from his Fair Hill, Maryland, base to run in next Saturday's Arlington H. (G3) -- the course and distance prep for the August 15 Arlington Million (G1). Previously with trainer Malcolm Pierce and based in his native Ontario, the 2013 Canadian Horse of the Year was fourth in last year's Million. "He's doing very well right now and coming for the Arlington Handicap," Motion said. "The Million is the goal with him and we've built our plans around that. I think the owners wanted to have an American campaign with him. So, if they're going to do that, he should probably be based in America." In his debut for his new barn, Up With the Birds finished an extremely wide-trip third in the May 16 Dixie (G2) at Pimlico. "He's not a flashy horse in his work, but he got a lot out of his run at Pimlico," Motion said. "All things considered, it was a very good effort." The trainer confirmed that Drayden Van Dyke, who was aboard Up With the Birds for the first time in the Dixie, will fly in to ride...

Ike and Dawn Thrash and Janet and Sam Alley's Amira J (Sky Mesa) stamped herself as a juvenile to watch with a facile 14-length victory Friday at Arlington. The Mike Stidham pupil covered five Polytrack furlongs in :58. "We picked her at Keeneland and she's the long, scopey type that we like," Ike Thrash said. "We don't have many who can win at five furlongs, so this is nice. We had one who was like this, Third Dawn, who lost the Santa Anita Oaks (G1) by an inch. We like the ones with reach and we bought nine this year, which is a lot more than usual. The other day we worked her with Katie's Eyes (Leroidesanimaux), who we want to take to the Breeders' Cup. Katie's Eyes really couldn't go by her -- and this is an unraced two-year-old -- so we figured she was probably pretty tough today. We will likely either go to the Sorrento ([G2] at Del Mar on August 12) or the (Arlington-Washington) Lassie (on August 29). You hate to move them when they go that well on the surface (like Polytrack). It's always a question if they'll take to dirt, but we'll wait and see how she comes out of the race and talk to Mike (Stidham). Probably one or the other. We have no idea if she will like the dirt. I don't think a Sky Mesa would have trouble with dirt and we did well at Del Mar last year with the ones we took there."...

Multiple stakes queen White Rose (Tapit), a closing fifth most recently in the New York (G2), has been installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite in Sunday's $100,000 River Memories at Belmont Park. Junior Alvarado rides the Bill Mott-trained mare. Sheepshead Bay (G2) runner-up Maxomova (Danehill Dancer) is among the seven distaffers that will cover 1 1/2 miles on the Widener Turf course and Manny Franco will be up for Christophe Clement. Goldy Espony (Vespone) merits consideration for trainer Chad Brown following a comfortable victory over allowance/optional claiming foes on May 8 and picks up the services of Kendrick Carmouche...

For many who are still celebrating American Pharoah's (Pioneerof the Nile) Triple Crown sweep, jockey Victor Espinoza will be the biggest attraction in the Smile Sprint S. (G2) and other races during Gulfstream Park's Summit of Speed program on Sunday. Espinoza, who has had a whirlwind public appearance schedule since guiding American Pharoah to a commanding and historic victory in the Belmont S. (G1) on June 6, has six mounts on the day at Gulfstream and is scheduled to sign commemorative posters prior to Sunday's card...

Thoroughbred racing economic indicators for June showed across-the-board declines. Wagering on U.S. races, including worldwide commingled wagering, equaled $925,512,755, a miniscule drop of 0.23 percent over last June's $927,683,726 total. U.S. purses declined 7.30 percent, from $104,516,868 to $96,884,024, while June 2015 race days of 497 recorded a 5.87 decrease on June 2014 races days of 528. U.S. races fell 7.86 percent, from 4,225 in June 2014 to 3,893, while U.S. starts declined 8.30 percent, from 31,368 to 28,763. Year-to-date numbers also all dropped. Wagering declined 0.52 percent, from $5,507,622,288 to $5,479,192,872; U.S. purses fell 3.72 percent, from $513,423,392 to $494,340,164; U.S. race days declined 4.32 percent, from 2,386 to 2,283; U.S. races were off 5.83 percent, from 19,969 to 18,805; and U.S. starts dropped 3.68 percent, from 150,232 to 144,699. Second quarter results showed the only increase and that came in the wagering. Wagering on U.S. races rose 3.52 percent, from $2,951,674,063 in 2014 to $3,055,547,544 for the comparable period in 2015. All the other numbers dropped. U.S. purses fell 2.10 percent, from $297,979,123 to $291,707,804; U.S. race days declined 2.98 percent, from 1,410 to 1,368; U.S. races decreased 4.55 percent, from 11,600 to 11,072 ;and U.S. starts were off 4.32 percent, from 86,277 to 82,550.

Features

INTERNATIONAL FEATURE

JULY 5, 2015

Durbay July Ever-Unpredictable

by Liesl King

Predictable is one thing the Vodacom Durban July (SAf-G1) never is. Once the South African National Anthem is sung and the gates crash open to the roar of the crowd, the formbook flies out the window and absolutely anything can happen.

Yet, after the 2014 running of the race -- where the winner wasn't the winner -- surely 2015 would be a more normal race.

Statistics suggested that a three-year-old would return victorious. After all, they were highly rated, lightly weighted and two of the top three were trained by the soon-to-be-crowned champion trainer Sean Tarry.

Statistics, however, do not take into account that we are not dealing just with numbers, but with nine tons of horseflesh, each with a mind of its own.

As the crowd of about 55,000 looked on in disbelief, the Vodacom Durban July seemed to be experiencing a groundhog day. Once again two horses came together up the home straight, once again there was a scrimmage, once again the objection hooter sounded and once again there was an extremely lengthy delay, with no winner being declared.

The only difference this year is that winning jockey, Stuart Randolph, was having none of it.

Randolph has been part of the riding ranks for 30-odd years, and prior to this race, his most memorable victory was in the 2001 Gold Cup. To win South Africa's most prestigious race is a dream that had long passed him by, and Randolph was just happy to steadily keep adding to his total of roughly 1,600 winners.

Then suddenly, rudely and rather abruptly, he found himself in the lead on a horse that had no intention of stopping.

As the Dean Kannemeyer-trained Power King (Silvano) surged across the line, Randolph still could not quite believe it. Once Randolph realized that he was not dreaming and that he had finally, after three decades in the saddle, won South Africa's most prestigious race, no objection hooter was going to stop him from experiencing the moment to its fullest.

Randolph's smile could have lit up an entire city. He waved, he smiled, and ever so often he patted Power King. Back at the winner's circle, owner Lady Christine Laidlaw had finally arrived and, while she has been fortunate enough to win most of South Africa's biggest races, this one had eluded her.

Finally, after an agonizing 20 minutes or so with a tired Power King circling and his connections waiting, the objection was overturned and the party could start. Owner, trainer and jockey embraced, even wiped away some tears, as silver platters were handed over, sashes were draped, champagne corks popped and fireworks lit up the sky.

It may not have happened quite the way it was meant to, but racing is unpredictable and even 44-year-old journeyman jockeys can win the July.

Spot Plays/Highlights/Weather

SPOT PLAYS

For Sunday

TRACK   (RACE) HORSE, MORNING LINE
Arlington Park   (3rd) Buzzy, 4-1
    (8th) Dr. Clark, 9-2
Belmont Park   (3rd) Bessie's Boy, 5-1
    (6th) Northern Tripp, 9-2
Belterra Park   (7th) Camp Zippy, 8-1
    (8th) Atagirltiff, 6-1
Canterbury   (5th) Deadly Black Eagle, 9-2
    (6th) Thoughtless, 9-2
Ellis Park   (1st) Kody With a K, 6-1
    (5th) Ready by You, 7-2
Emerald Downs   (5th) Mr. Rancho Vista, 7-2
    (6th) Single Launch, 4-1
Fort Erie   (1st) Runaway Brenda, 8-1
    (7th) Thundering Waters, 6-1
Gulfstream Park   (3rd- Catira Rock, 8-1
    (10th) Flutterby, 4-1
Hastings   (2nd) Pas Believen, 8-1
    (6th) Proxyman, 7-2
Laurel   (1st) Crossing Borders, 9-2
    (5th) Intrepid Citizen, 5-1
Lone Star Park   (3rd) Perfect Paradise, 8-1
    (10th) Star Dog, 10-1
Los Alamitos   (6th) Put It There, 4-1
    (7th) Fonz, 4-1
Monmouth Park   (4th) Cherokee Colours, 4-1
    (7th) Money Changer, 7-2
Mountaineer   (1st) Need a Kitten, 6-1
    (4th) Jackie G, 9-2
Parx Racing   (4th) Queen to Be, 5-1
    (6th) Indian Defence, 5-1
Pleasanton   (3rd) Time On the Run, 7-2
    (4th) Donji, 7-2
Prairie Meadows   (8th) Plenty Elusive, 4-1
    (9th) Cornfed, 5-1
Presque Isle Downs   (1st) Grin, 6-1
    (8th) Adventurous Fox, 3-1
Woodbine   (3rd) White Gladiator, 8-1
    (12th) Unikat, 6-1

HANDICAPPER'S EDGE is compiled by Bloodstock Research Information Services. This newsletter may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without the prior written permission of the copyright owner. Copyright 2011, Bloodstock Research Information Services. Information as to the races, race results and earnings was obtained from Equibase Company LLC and is utilized herein with the permission of the copyright owner, Equibase Company LLC.

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