Friday Racing Insights: American Pharoah Half To Hoppertunity Debuts At Del Mar

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 8th-DMR, $80K, Msw, 3yo/up, 6 1/2f, 10:27 p.m.    A $475,000 KEESEP yearling purchase by the Three Amigos, AMERICAN REFUGEE (American Pharoah) will be the 13th foal to race out of the GSP mare Refugee (Unaccounted For). This makes him a half-brother to MGISW & $4.7 million earner Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday) and MGISW & 'TDN Rising Star' Executiveprivilege (First Samurai). This is also the family of champion 3-year-old filly & MGISW Davona Dale (Best Turn). Trained by Bob Baffert, who famously campaigned his sire...

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Santa Anita Stewards Dismiss Complaints Against Justify, Hoppertunity

The latest development in a long, tumultuous and litigious journey saw the California Board of Stewards dismissing complaints filed by the current California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) regarding the scopolamine positives incurred by Justify (Scat Daddy) and Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday) following their runs in the 2018 GI Santa Anita Derby and the GIII Tokyo City Cup S. respectively. The CHRB filed the complaint as part of a legal settlement with trainer Mick Ruis, owner of Santa Anita Derby runner-up Bolt d'Oro (Medaglia d'Oro). According to attorney Darrell Vienna, who...

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Northview Set for Fasig-Tipton Midlantic December

   Northview Stallion Station will be busy at the upcoming Fasig-Tipton Midlantic December Mixed and Horses of Racing Age Sale on Tuesday, Dec. 8. The consignment will offer nearly 50 head, including a 27-horse reduction of breeding stock for Joseph Besecker. Perhaps more importantly, the annual Midlantic sale will allow the Chesapeake City, Maryland-based farm the opportunity to show off stock from their growing stallion roster, including the first weanlings from Irish War Cry (Curlin) and Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday). "Our game is to bring the best we can for...

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Baffert Scopolamine Hearing Unfolds in Complicated, Twisting Fashion

After 2 1/2 years of closed-session decision-making by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) and a complicated court battle to publicly reopen the case over whether to disqualify 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify over a scopolamine positive from when the colt won that year's GI Santa Anita Derby, the initial back-and-forth legal salvos in an Oct. 29 stewards' hearing on the matter indicate that the argument could come down to whether scopolamine was a Class 3 or Class 4 substance at the time of the post-race test. The difference in...

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Justify, Hoppertunity Connections Seek Court Block of CHRB Scopolamine Re-Hearings

Trainer Bob Baffert, plus the owners and two jockeys who rode the undefeated 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify and the MGISW Hoppertunity, filed a legal petition against the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) Oct. 13, alleging that the CHRB's recent decision to reopen hearings on two scopolamine positives from those horses in 2018 amounts to "arbitrary, capricious, and unlawful conduct" that purportedly targets Baffert and his clients unfairly while supposedly damaging the horses' reputations as stallions. The petition, filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, seeks a judgment, injunction,...

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First Foal for Hoppertunity

MGISW Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday--Refugee, by Unaccounted For) has his first foal on the ground. The bay filly was born Jan. 14 at Peter Alafoginis's farm in Lawrenceville in north central Pennsylvania. Bred by Rick Molineaux, she is out of stakes-winning Rhythm in Shoes (by Rhythm), and is a half-sister to seven winners. Hoppertunity stands his second season at Northview Stallion Station PA for $5,000 live foal, payable when the foal stands and nurses.

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Pennsylvania Breeding Program Continues to Grow

Bucking a nationwide trend, the number of mares bred in Pennsylvania in 2019 was 686, an increase of 12.5% over 2018.  It was the third straight year that the number of horses bred in Pennsylvania has increased. Overall, the number of mares bred in 2019 in the U.S. declined by 3.5%. The growing popularity of the Pennsylvania program is a direct result of the establishment of the Racehorse Development Fund Trust in 2017. The trust guaranteed that the government could no longer raid the Horse Racing Development Fund, which funneled...

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