Honor Code

Wednesday Insights: Blue-Boooded Tapit Colt Debuts at Churchill

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 9th-CD, $85K, Msw, 3yo/up, 6f, 5:06 p.m. ET Blue-blooded CENTRIFUGE (Tapit), a $700,000 KEESEP yearling purchase, makes his belated debut for Rodolphe Brisset. The half-brother to dual Grade I-winning and sophomore sire Honor Code (A.P. Indy) is out of SW Serena's Cat (Storm Cat), a daughter of multiple-stakes winning Serena's Tune (Mr. Prospector) and a granddaughter of 1995 Champion 3-year-old Filly and Hall of Famer Serena's Song (Rahy). Serena's Cat, a $1.4-million KEENOV purchase in 2003, is also responsible for Noble Tune (Unbridled's Song), a...

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Max Player to Preakness

George Hall and SportsBLX Thoroughbreds Corp.'s Max Player (Honor Code) will contest the Oct. 3 GI Preakness S. at Pimlico. "I'm very excited because I haven't been in the Preakness yet," said Hall, who won the 2011 Belmont with 24-1 shot Ruler On Ice. "After the Kentucky Derby, he looked like he wanted to keep running. Steve watched him closely, and he was in great shape. He's galloped well. He's breezed well. We felt the horse was at the peak of his game and is ready to run." Winner of...

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Max Player Moved to Asmussen Barn

George Hall and SportBLX Thoroughbreds's GI Kentucky Derby contender Max Player (Honor Code) has been moved from trainer Linda Rice to the Steve Asmussen barn, Rice confirmed via Twitter Tuesday. "Max Player has been moved to the Asmussen barn in order to prepare for the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs," Rice said. "We are disappointed to see him go, but we wish George Hall and SportBLX the best of luck!" Winner of the GIII Withers S. this February at Aqueduct, Max Player finished third behind Tiz the Law (Constitution) off...

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Businesslike Opener to OBS July Sale

by Jessica Martini & Christie DeBernardis With attendance at the sales grounds down dramatically, but internet bidding brisk, the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's July 2-Year-Olds and Horses of Racing Age Sale opened with a workmanlike session Tuesday in Central Florida. "It was a solid start," said OBS Director of Sales Tod Wojciechowski. "Obviously we had some nice horses go through the ring and sell well. It was a little slow early on in the day, but I thought it leveled out. We are dealing with strange times, that's for sure,...

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Not Even a Pandemic Can Push Rice Off Course

ELMONT, N.Y.--Linda Rice is as meticulous as they come in preparing her horses. The conditioner knows every detail about each and every horse in her care and maps out very specific plans for them. But, as organized as Rice is, she is equally as adaptable, as every horse trainer must be, and those qualities have served her well as she prepares Max Player (Honor Code) for a step up to the big leagues in an unconventional edition of the GI Belmont S. Saturday. Max Player's unique journey to the top...

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Max Player Tunes Up for Belmont

Last-out GIII Withers S. scorer Max Player (Honor Code) breezed Saturday morning at Belmont, getting six furlongs in 1:12.25 under work rider Oscar Gomez. It was the sophomore's last work before the GI Belmont S., which is scheduled for June 20. Owned by George E. Hall, who won the 2011 Belmont with Ruler On Ice (Roman Ruler), Max Player is trained by Linda Rice, who last had a runner in the Belmont in 2003 with Supervisor (Skip Trial). "He went the first three-eighths in :36.3 and I instructed Oscar to...

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Honor A.P. Cracks the Genetic Code

If someone new to our business asked you to pick a single race in 2015 that might explain the passion that consumes us, you probably wouldn't pick the processional exhibitions of a first Triple Crown winner in 37 years. You'd show them the GI Whitney S. In a summer when hardly anyone will be able to renew the Saratoga pilgrimage, you may find the jolt of nostalgia too poignant to revisit the video yourself. But gosh, that was a horserace. Liam's Map (Unbridled's Song), flying just that fraction too close...

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Reyes Sends Out Pair of Bullet Workers at Final OBS Breeze Show

Raul Reyes of King's Equine sent out two of the four bullet furlong workers at the final day of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's Spring Sale breeze show Saturday. "They both breezed well, no surprises," Reyes said. "They have both been training well all around." One of Reyes's bullet workers was Hip 1179, a NY-bred son of Honor Code (video). Consigned on behalf of breeder Pine Ridge Stables, the colt is out of the stakes-placed Indian Charlie mare Indian Rush, who is also responsible for stakes winner's March X Press...

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Santa Anita Derby Showdown

West Coast heavyweights Authentic (Into Mischief) and Honor A.P. (Honor Code) meet for round two in a highly anticipated renewal of Saturday's GI Runhappy Santa Anita Derby. Authentic made it a perfect three-for-three for Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, posting a powerful 2 1/4-length wire-to-wire decision over Honor A.P. in the GII San Felipe S. Mar. 7. He previously aired by 7 3/4 lengths over stablemate Azul Coast (Super Saver), a next out winner of the El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate Feb. 15, in the GIII Sham S....

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Max Player Preps for Belmont S.

GIII Wither S. hero Max Player (Honor Code) breezed six furlongs in 1:13.87 (1/2) Friday morning on the Belmont training track in preparation for the June 20 GI Belmont S. "He had a nice workout today. He went six furlongs in 1:13 4/5 on the training track and did it easily," said trainer Linda Rice. "We were happy with it. We'll give him two more workouts before the Belmont." A second-out graduate at Parx in December, the George Hall homebred came running late to take the nine-furlong Withers in February...

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Strength and Honor

As Honor A. P. (Honor Code) was gearing up for his career debut at Del Mar last summer, owner Lee Searing had some fun with trainer John Shirreffs while inquiring about a potential rider for his stunning $850,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga yearling acquisition. "I asked John, it wasn't like I didn't know, and said, 'Who are you going to be putting on this big horse,'" Searing said of the veteran conditioner widely known for playing his cards close to his vest. "He said, 'Well, I don't know Lee.' As we got...

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Medina, Longtime Right Hand to McGaughey, Moves to Blackwood

Twenty-five years is a long time to spend in a job. Especially one in the world of training Thoroughbreds, which necessitates frequent travel, untold hours of overtime, waking up before the sun and physically toiling away at the daily work of controlling and redirecting the energy of half-ton animals. But when you get to spend that quarter-century under the tutelage of a Hall of Fame trainer, the time becomes an asset. And now, with a life's worth of experience accrued working under Shug McGaughey, former assistant Robby Medina has made...

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