Just F Y I

Mott Stable Preps For Belmont Stakes Racing Festival

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott has plenty to look forward to at next month's Belmont Stakes Racing Festival, with at least five trainees eyeing stakes engagements during the lucrative weekend. Juddmonte homebred Batten Down (Tapit) is the latest addition to the prospective field for the GI Belmont S. with Mott confirming the 10-furlong test is next. "I don't know if he'll get in or not--he's only broken his maiden," said Mott. At fourth asking Apr. 30 at Aqueduct, the full-brother to the Mott-trained MGISP and current sire Tacitus drew...

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McPeek Weighs Preakness Shot for Thorpedo Anna

Trainer Ken McPeek is considering the GI Preakness S. for Friday's GI Kentucky Oaks heroine Thorpedo Anna (Fast Anna), who came out of the race in fine shape. "She left a little bit of grain last night, about half a scoop, but it's nothing to be worried about," McPeek said. "It's something we watch regularly, and she typically eats up every night. She's tired. She ran hard." He continued, "We're gonna look at the Preakness, but she's gonna have to show us in the next three or four days. We'll...

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Streaking 'Thorpedo' Takes Kentucky Oaks

LOUISVILLE, KY -- All week, trainer Kenny McPeek had been telling the media, 'they better bring a bear because I have a grizzly.' Many would have thought that McPeek, sometimes regarded as a master of hyperbole, was overstating his chances. It turns out he wasn't. Armed with plenty of natural speed, Brookdale Racing, Mark Edwards, Judy Hicks and Magdalena Racing's 'TDN Rising Star' Thorpedo Anna (Fast Anna) lived up to her name by scampering to a three-length victory over last year's champion juvenile filly Just F Y I (Justify) in...

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Tarifa, Leslie's Rose, Just F Y I Headline Loaded Oaks Day Card

This week's morning action at Churchill Downs only served to entice onlookers by the sheer breadth and quality of contenders set to line up for the 150th renewal of the GI Kentucky Oaks and its undercard Friday. A stacked field of 14 is set for the Oaks, led by the 7-2 morning line choice Tarifa (Bernardini), who drew post 8 but moves in to the seven slot following Thursday's scratch of Tapit Jenallie (Tapit). Flavien Prat has the mount on the GII Rachel Alexandra S. and GII Fair Grounds Oaks...

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Classic Stage is Set at Churchill Downs

LOUISVILLE, KY--Kicking off a steamy day in Louisville, Thursday's morning session began to distill several things that I had seen over the course of the past week at Churchill Downs. Each morning, I would line up trackside to watch the Kentucky Derby/Oaks work session, also giving me the opportunity to survey the overall landscape at Churchill Downs. The years of progress and development at the facility is staggering. As I pan across the property, the mass of seating, both existing and new, that will accommodate the throngs of people over...

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Fan-Fueled Wednesday at Churchill Downs

LOUISVILLE, KY--What a difference a day makes. The activity on the backside only a day ago offered a hint that something big was encroaching, however, Wednesday dawned with an explosion of activity straight out of the gate. Masses piled onto the barn area to watch the morning workouts, reminding me just how different Churchill Downs is Derby week when compared to almost any other racetrack in the United States. Fans are given a tremendous amount of access, creating an atmosphere that is difficult to compare most other venues. Trying to...

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Derby Favorite Fierceness Draws in 17, Sierra Leone Gets Post 2

Featuring $200-million worth of improvements in its new paddock area, Churchill Downs hosted the draw ceremony for next weekend's GI Kentucky Derby and GI Kentucky Oaks during its opening night card Saturday. As usual, the proceedings drew some cheers, and jeers, from the crowd. Possibly numbered among the latter, the connections of the 5-2 morning line favorite 'TDN Rising Star' Fierceness (City of Light) couldn't have been overly thrilled with drawing post 17 for Saturday's Run for the Roses. Campaigned by his breeder Mike Repole, the reigning juvenile champ comes...

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Resilience, Just F Y I Breeze at Churchill Downs on Busy Day for Arrivals

Bill Mott's Barn 19 was busy Monday morning as Kentucky Derby and Oaks hopefuls GSW Resilience (Into Mischief) and MGISW Just F Y I (Justify) put in published five-furlong workouts. The former galloped about one mile before producing a move clocked in 1:01.60 under jockey Junior Alvarado and easily galloped out six furlongs in 1:14.60, according to Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols. "He's the type of horse that has taken a little more time to mature than some others," trainer Bill Mott said. "We took our time with his development...

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Emery Begins Her 3-Year-Old Campaign With A Win At Keeneland

6th-Keeneland, $110,000, Alw (NW1X)/Opt. Clm ($100,000), 4-19, 3yo, f, 6f, 1:11.06, ft, 5 1/4 lengths. EMERY (f, 3, More Than Ready--Athena {MSW, $459,222}, by Street Sense) broke her maiden by 5 3/4 lengths over a muddy course last summer at Saratoga, and then finished fourth in the slop to Eclipse winner Just F Y I (Justify) in the GI Frizette S. during the Belmont at the Big A meet in early October. Poised to kick off her 3-year-old campaign, the dark bay with Lasix was tabbed as the 1-2 choice...

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Mott Classic Contenders Resilience, Just F Y I Return to the Work Tab

Trainer Bill Mott's barn sent out a pair of Classic aspirants Thursday morning, including Emily Bushnell and Ric Waldman's GII Wood Memorial winner Resilience (Into Mischief) along with George Krikorian's GI Ashland S. runner-up Just F Y I (Justify). The two returned to the work tab to continue their preparations for the GI Kentucky Derby and GI Kentucky Oaks, respectively. The duo began their work together at 7:30 a.m. ET after galloping about one mile. The defending champion juvenile filly Just F Y I worked to the outside of Resilience...

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$1.15-Million Into Mischief Filly Leslie's Rose Blooms in Ashland for Whisper Hill

Billed as a showdown between the top three finishers of the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, Keeneland's opening day GI Central Bank Ashland S.--worth not just $600,000 in purse money but also GI Kentucky Oaks points on a 100-50-25-15-10 scale--instead featured the blossoming of Whisper Hill Farm's 'TDN Rising Star' Leslie's Rose (f, 3, Into Mischief--Wildwood Rose {Ire}, by Galileo {Ire}), who left no doubt about the top filly on the day with a three-length tour de force. George Krikorian's Breeders' Cup winner and Eclipse champion Just F Y I...

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Keeneland Features Ashland Showdown As Spring Meet Opens Friday

Kentucky Senator Henry Clay might be considered one of the premier American politicians pre-Lincoln, but what is not up for debate was his fervent commitment to breeding equine athletes and attending the races. You cannot actually visit his home--Ashland--because the structure that stands on the Clay Estate just south of downtown Lexington is not original to "The Great Compromiser" and his time. However, interpretations of Clay-related objects enliven the tour. Ashland in name was imported as a stakes race when Keeneland opened in 1936. Some familiar female runners who graced...

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