Mark Casse

Live Oak's Blue Hen Broodmare Win Approval Euthanized at 29

Win Approval, a Live Oak Stud foundation mare and the 2017 Broodmare of the Year, was euthanized July 19 due to the infirmities of old age, the farm announced Tuesday. She was 29 years old. By Canadian Horse of the Year With Approval out of the graded stakes-placed and stakes-producing Hoist the Flag mare Negotiator, Win Approval left an indelible mark on the industry as a producer of champions. The Live Oak homebred is the dam of eight winners from 10 foals, including a pair of champions--World Approval (Northern Afleet),...

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Curlin's Souper Sensational Rallies to Victory Ride Win

'TDN Rising Star' Souper Sensational (Curlin), a jaw-dropping winner of her first two career starts last fall at Woodbine, got back on track in a big way with a dominating performance in Saturday's GIII Victory Ride S. at Belmont. Outfooted through fractions of :22.81 and :45.68, she was locked and loaded in fifth beneath Flavien Prat approaching the quarter pole, and exploded with a four/five-wide blitz from there to record a career high. The chestnut went winless in four previous starts at three after capping her 2-year-old campaign with a...

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Second Winner for Gun Runner

2nd-Gulfstream, $60,000, Msw, 5-14, 2yo, 5f, :58.40, ft, 2 3/4 lengths. PAPPACAP (c, 2, Gun Runner--Pappascat {GSP, $165,762}, by Scat Daddy) was off as the even-money favorite to become the second winner for his freshman sire (by Candy Ride {Arg}) at first asking. He broke on top in this eight-horse affair and was pushed along through an opening quarter in :22.71. The bay began to shake clear off the turn, had a three-length advantage in the stretch and had the final margin cut to 2 3/4 lengths by Merlin (Brethren)....

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Op/Ed: HISA Necessary for Our Future

At the end of 2020, I was happy to hear that an important piece of legislation geared toward keeping our horses safe, the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA), was signed into law. I chose to support HISA because it will establish the same medication rules and penalties at every track in every jurisdiction in the United States, which makes for fair and equal competition, promotes equine welfare and punishes those who cross the line. This week, I read the news that the governing authority established by HISA announced its...

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Thursday's Trackside Derby Report

LOUISVILLE, KY - Despite heavy overnight rain leaving the Churchill Downs main track a sloppy mess, there was still plenty to take in during Thursday's GI Kentucky Derby/Oaks training session, including an appearance by the horse that has the big bulls-eye on his back. Rock Your World (Candy Ride {Arg}), Soup and Sandwich (Into Mischief) and Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow) drew a nice crowd of admirers by the Lukas gap as the track was being sealed beneath ominous skies and humid conditions just a tick before 7:30 a.m. With his...

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Empire Racing Club Launches Third Season

Kicking off its third season, the Empire Racing Club (ERC) will offer a reduced price of $400 through the official re-launch date of May 15. In a departure from the first two seasons, 2021 membership is open to both licensed and unlicensed racing enthusiasts looking to enjoy the social and educational benefits of the Club. The 2021 ERC season will be limited to 200 members. The ERC will once again be managed by famed race-caller Tom Durkin. Training the current team of runners for the 2021 season are Hall of...

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With Ontario Extending Stay-at-Home Order, Woodbine Opening Up in the Air

The Ontario government announced earlier this week that a province-wide COVID-19-related lockdown has been extended to at least May 20, dashing hopes that Woodbine will be able to open for business any time soon. The meet was supposed to begin Apr. 17. "There is a crisis right now in the Toronto area and we're right in the middle of it," said Woodbine CEO Jim Lawson. "They are running out of intensive care beds and the numbers are not going down. The good news is that more vaccines are coming in...

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Busy Saturday Beneath the Twin Spires

With just two weeks remaining to the running of the GI Kentucky Derby, the Saturday worktab at Churchill Downs was dotted with the names of top sophomores headed towards the first jewel of racing's Triple Crown. Godolphin's reigning Eclipse Award-winning juvenile colt and 'TDN Rising Star' Essential Quality (Tapit) took to the Churchill main track at 5:15 a.m. with big-race rider Luis Saez in from Keeneland to put the colt through his paces. The homebred went five furlongs in :59.60 after breaking off about a length behind 4-year-old stablemate Spa...

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Pletcher Works Derby Quartet at Churchill

On a busy Friday morning at Churchill Downs, GI Kentucky Derby contenders Bourbonic (Bernardini) (five furlongs, 1:01.60), Dynamic One (Union Rags) (five furlongs, 1:01), Helium (Ironicus) (five furlongs, 1:01.80), Known Agenda (Curlin) (five furlongs, 1:00.40) and Sainthood (Mshawish) (five furlongs, 1:00.40) all recorded published workouts in preparation for the 147th running of the "Run for the Roses" Saturday, May 1. All five horses worked at 7:30 a.m. and D J Stable's unbeaten GII Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby winner Helium was the first of the quintet to work. "The most...

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Canadian Horse of the Year Goes to Mighty Heart

Dual Canadian Classic winner Mighty Heart (Dramedy), a homebred for Lawrence Cordes, was named Canadian Horse of the Year at the 46th Annual Sovereign Awards ceremony held Thursday evening. It marked the second year in a row Canada's championship awards were held virtually due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Trained by Josie Carroll, Mighty Heart began his sophomore campaign in July with a maiden special weight victory at Woodbine, then went on to capture the Sept. 12 Queen's Plate S. and the Sept. 29 Prince of Wales S. The one-eyed...

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Mandaloun, Helium Record Churchill Breezes

'TDN Rising Star' and GII Risen Star S. hero Mandaloun (Into Mischief) and D J Stable's Helium (Ironicus), upset winner of the GII Tampa Bay Derby, each tuned up for their upcoming starts in the GI Kentucky Derby May 1 with Saturday morning drills over the Churchill Downs main track. Working in the company of his fellow graded-stakes winning Juddmonte colorbearer Bonny South (Munnings), Mandaloun went five furlongs in :58.80 in splits of :23.40 and :46.60 before galloping out three-quarters of a mile in 1:11.40 and seven-eighths in 1:25.60, according...

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'Storm' Rolling in For Jeff Ruby

A field of 11, headed by Joseph Morey Jr.'s Hush of a Storm (Creative Cause), aim to take advantage of the Kentucky Derby points on the line in Saturday's GIII Jeff Ruby Steaks at Turfway Park. Drawing the 2 hole, the William Morey trainee kicked off his career finishing eighth against $150,000 maidens on the dirt at Churchill last November, but rebounded in fine style to win with ease while trying the Tapeta for the first time going a mile a Turfway in December. A narrow winner facing optional claiming...

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