Horse Racing

Speightstown Firster Overcomes Wide Trip at Churchill

6th-Churchill Downs, $100,000, Msw, 5-23, 3yo/up, f/m, 5 1/2fT, 1:04.51, fm, neck. TOWN AVENGER (f, 3, Speightstown--Unavenged, by Empire Maker) was crunched into 7-2 at post time from a morning line of 12-1 and was up in the shadow of the post for a good-looking victory at first asking. Settled behind midfield, but trapped out wide after departing the 10 hole, the $380,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase looped rivals four deep on the turn and carried a full head of steam into the lane despite the significant ground loss. The...

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Panfield Ascends To New Heights in Champions & Chater Cup

Exultant (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}) was a well-backed third in the 2018 BMW Hong Kong Derby before winning the G3 Queen Mother Memorial Cup H. and finishing runner-up in the G1 Standard Chartered Champions & Chater Cup. Three years on, South American import Panfield (Chi) (Lookin At Lucky), who racked up a trio of top-level successes on home soil prior to his sale to Hong Kong, outran odds of 25-1 to complete the tierce in this year's Derby and was only fifth to Butterfield (Brz) (Setembro Chove {Brz}) in the Queen...

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Irish Guineas Hangs In The Balance

Saturday's Curragh card which features the G1 Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas is in doubt after 35 millimetres of rain hit the track overnight Thursday. With a morning inspection called, chief executive Pat Keogh is hoping for a turnaround with the course currently waterlogged in places. "We got a lot more rain than we anticipated overnight. We were forecast 15 millimetres at the most in the last 24 hours," he explained on Friday. "It's come completely out of left field, unfortunately. The track would not be raceable today. We'll just have...

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Observations: Chiasma Aimed at Goodwood

4.35 Goodwood, Novice, £9,000, 3yo, f, 9f 197yT CHIASMA (IRE) (Galileo {Ire}) has been found an easy target, ground-permitting, by John and Thady Gosden as she bids to build on an encouraging debut third over this trip at Sandown last month. The full-sister to Frankel (GB) and Noble Mission (GB) meets just four opponents at the rain-hit Sussex track and if she handles the testing ground, is likely to be a class above.

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Sodashi Aims For Six Straight in Yushun Himba

The world's most recognizable--and most talented--white Thoroughbred, Sodashi (Jpn) (Kurofune), puts her unblemished record on the line against a full field of fellow 3-year-old fillies in Sunday's G1 Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks) going a full circuit of the Fuchu Racecourse at Tokyo. Not one of the 68 horses Sodashi has faced through her five career starts have managed to finish ahead of her, even if she never wins by a space. The Makoto Kaneko runner debuted with a 2 1/2-length victory over 1800 metres last summer, but has since been...

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Horse Racing Set to Return To Ontario

Edited Press Release The Government of Ontario announced a three-step 'Roadmap to Reopen' the economy plan Thursday based on decreased daily COVID-19 case counts, lower hospitalization rates, and the percentage of vaccinated residents. Live horse racing is included in Step One of that plan, which is estimated to begin Monday, June 14. Officials at Woodbine Entertainment have announced that the 2021 Standardbred season at Woodbine Mohawk Park will resume Monday, June 14, and then continue its regular five race days per week schedule (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday). The 2021...

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Another Purse Increase at Finger Lakes

Owing to better-than-expected revenues from its gaming operations since returning from a coronavirus-related, six-month closure and the ability to conduct business over a 20-hour business day, purses at Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack (FLGR) will be increased for the second time this season, leaving daily prizemoney 26% higher than it was in 2020. In announcing a 10% increase in addition to the 15% that was announced last month, average daily purses have increased by better than $30,000 versus last year. "This second increase in 2021 is another positive development for...

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Notable US-Bred & Sired Runners In Japan: May 22-23, 2021

In this continuing series, we take a look ahead at US-bred and/or conceived runners entered for the upcoming weekend at the tracks on the Japan Racing Association circuit, with a focus on pedigree and/or performance in the sales ring. Here are the horses of interest for this weekend running at Chukyo and Tokyo Racecourses. This week's Group 1 feature is the Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks), in which the popular white filly Sodashi (Jpn) (Kurofune) will attempt to protect her perfect five-for-five record while attempting the 2400-meter trip for the first...

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Thursday Observations: Aga Khan Blueblood Introducted at ParisLongchamp

8.25 ParisLongchamp, Debutantes, €27,000, 3yo, f, 8fT DOLIA (FR) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}) is the second foal out of The Aga Khan's G1 Dubai Sheema Classic heroine Dolniya (Fr) (Azamour {Ire}) from the celebrated family of Daylami (Ire) and Dalakhani (Ire). Alain de Royer-Dupre also has charge of the February-foaled bay, whose opponents include the Niarchos Family's La Fiamma (War Front), a Pascal Bary trainee who is the first foal out of the GIII Modesty H. winner Faufiler (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) and therefore a granddaughter of the illustrious Six Perfections (Fr)...

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Oxted Among 42 July Cup Entries

The G1 Darley July Cup, scheduled for day three of the Moet & Chandon July Festival at Newmarket July 10, has attracted 42 entries, led by trainer Roger Teal's defending race champion Oxted (GB) (Mayson {GB}). The 5-year-old, a close fifth to Glen Shiel (GB) (Pivotal {GB}) in last year's G1 QIPCO British Champions Sprint at Ascot in October, has run well without greeting the judge in two starts this term, a runner-up effort to Summerghand (Ire) (Lope de Vega {Ire}) in the G3 Abernant S. at Newmarket Apr. 15...

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Wagering Insecurity, Part 11: Recommendations

The following is the 11th of a 12-part series on wagering insecurity in American racing from the think tank the Thoroughbred Idea Foundation.  A growing firm in the sports integrity business approached a major racing operator in 2017. "They told us better integrity does not help us bring in more customers and their main focus right now is on growing the customer base." The reality is different in almost every other major racing jurisdiction. Integrity oversight is a necessity to ensure acceptance and participation. Customer and stakeholder confidence is paramount....

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NYRA Suspends Baffert

There was more bad news for Bob Baffert Monday, as the New York Racing Association announced that it has temporarily suspended the trainer, which means he will not be allowed to enter any horses at NYRA tracks or occupy stall space. "In order to maintain a successful thoroughbred racing industry in New York, NYRA must protect the integrity of the sport for our fans, the betting public and racing participants," NYRA President and CEO Dave O'Rourke said in a statement. "That responsibility demands the action taken today in the best...

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