The Hearts and Minds Behind Secret Oath

By this stage, they've probably had enough of being asked about that $1 mare. But the remarkable thing is that the first Thoroughbred ever acquired by Robert and Stacy Mitchell still cost more (cover fees aside) than all the others that have stocked Briland Farm, on and off the racetrack, since 2001. That was the year, having begun an inadvertent breeding career with a mare discarded by a friend of a friend, they decided to see what they could do with one that cost as much as $36,000. Her name...

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Charge It And Nest Breeze For Upcoming Engagements

Whisper Hill Farm homebred Charge It (Tapit) took another step forward for the GI Runhappy Travers S. with a half-mile breeze Friday at Saratoga. He was clocked in :48.77 for his second drill since a 23-length win in the GIII Dwyer S. July 2 at Belmont for trainer Todd Pletcher. "He went really well, five-eighths by himself in 1:01 and change. He had a super strong gallop out, pulled up the mile in 1:42," Pletcher said. "Essentially, we're trying to follow the same program we did leading up to the...

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The Week in Review: Nest Belongs in the Travers

For Nest (Curlin), the easy route to the Breeders' Cup includes a stop in the GI Alabama Aug 20. It's a prestigious race, has a $600,000 purse and Nest would be an odds-on favorite against many of the same horses she thrashed Saturday in the GI Coaching Club American Oaks. But what fun is that? Owners Mike Repole, Michael House and Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and trainer Todd Pletcher have already shown that they will think outside the box. They ran their filly in the GI Belmont S., where she finished...

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'A Great Crowd Pleaser' as Hall of Famers Clash in CCA Oaks

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY - Though the GI Coaching Club American Oaks Saturday is short on depth, it is long on star power with Secret Oath (Arrogate) and D. Wayne Lukas taking on Nest (Curlin) and his long-ago former assistant Todd Pletcher. The rematch of the most accomplished 3-year-old fillies in the land puts two Hall of Fame trainers, very friendly rivals indeed, back together on the big stage of Saratoga Race Course. Seventy-nine days after Secret Oath beat favored Nest by two lengths in the GI Kentucky Oaks, the stars...

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'Rising Stars' Rendezvous at the Jersey Shore

The 'second season' for this year's crop of 3-year-olds--both boys and girls--gets underway in earnest with the running of the $1-million GI Haskell S. at Monmouth Park for the males and the GI CCA Oaks about 2 1/2 hours earlier at Saratoga. And intriguing matchups between the top two morning-line choices loom in each of the nine-furlong tests. Zedan Racing Stable's 'TDN Rising Star' Taiba (Gun Runner) was made the narrow 7-5 Haskell favorite by oddsmaker Brad Thomas and was utterly brilliant in his first two career starts, winning...

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Pletcher and Brown Stars Highlight Saratoga Worktab

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY - Todd Pletcher and Chad Brown were both quite busy Saturday morning at Saratoga, working some of their respective stables' top stars. GI Belmont S. runner-up Nest (Curlin) turned in her final breeze Saturday morning before her rematch with Secret Oath (Arrogate) July 23 in the GI Coaching Club American Oaks. Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher said the filly "worked really well" after she covered five furlongs in company with champion Corniche (Quality Road) in 1:01.44 under jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. on the main track. Secret...

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What's in a Name? Lost Ark, Park Avenue, and Autostrada

1st-Belmont, $90,000, Msw, 7-3, 2yo, 5 1/2f, 1:04.38, ft, 5 1/2 lengths. LOST ARK (c, 2, Violence--Marion Ravenwood {SW, $112,598}, by A.P. Indy) is a half-brother to both GI Belmont S. runner-up Nest (Curlin), GISW, $1,130,550 and GI Santa Anita H. winner Idol (Curlin), GISW, $426,964. Sales History: $275,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $49,500. O-Harrell Ventures, LLC; B-Ashview Farm & Colts Neck Stables (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher. There is a tight connection between horse and dam in the name of Belmont 2yo winner Lost Ark. Marion Ravenwood is...

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Sunday Racing Insights: Well-Related Violence Colt Takes On The Big Apple

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 1st-BEL, $90K, Msw, 2yo, 5 1/2f, 1:00 p.m. LOST ARK (Violence), a $275,000 KEESEP yearling purchase, is a half-brother to GISW & recent GI Belmont S. runner-up Nest (Curlin), as well as GI Santa Anita H. winner Idol (Curlin). Trained by Todd Pletcher, Lost Ark worked a bullet from the gate June 26, going four furlongs in :47 1/5 (1/48) and picks up jockey Flavien Prat for his debut. TJCIS PPs

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King Of Queens: Repole Gets a 1-2 Belmont Stakes Finish with Mo Donegal and Nest

ELMONT, NY - The kid from Queens got his GI Belmont Stakes. Carrying the royal blue-and-orange, New York Mets-inspired silks of Middle Village native Mike Repole, Donegal Racing and Repole Stable's Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo) delivered an authoritative, three-length victory as the 5-2 favorite before an announced crowd of 46,103 in Saturday's GI Belmont Stakes. It was the fourth victory in the third leg of the Triple Crown for Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher. The filly Nest (Curlin), also campaigned in partnership by the co-founder of Glaceau and trained...

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T. D. Thornton's Belmont Predictions, Sponsored by Fasig-Tipton

This week's TDN Triple Crown feature examines the GI Belmont S. entrants listed in "likeliest winner" order. 1) Mo Donegal (c, Uncle Mo--Callingmissbrown, by Pulpit) O-Donegal Racing & Repole Stable. B-Ashview Farm & Colts Neck Stables (KY). T-Todd Pletcher. Sales History: $250,000 yrl '20 KEESEP. You could argue that Mo Donegal lost the GI Kentucky Derby at the post draw after getting stuck with the dreaded rail gate. But his fifth-place effort, beaten 5 3/4 lengths in a stretch finish that featured the 1-2-3 horses all running full-tilt to the...

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Belmont Stakes 154: Where Did They Come From?

1) WE THE PEOPLE, c, Constitution--Letchworth, by Tiznow Owner: WinStar Farm, Bobby Flay, CMNWLTH, Siena Farm Breeder: Henley Farms (KY) Trainer: Rodolphe Brisset Sales History: $110,000 Keeneland November weanling, $220,000 Keeneland September yearling, $230,000 Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream 2-year-old Pedigree Notes: Trying to become the second Belmont winner in three years for WinStar's star fourth-crop sire (Tiz the Law in 2020), We the People is the second foal to race out of Letchworth, a $40,000 Keeneland January purchase by Henley Farms at Keeneland January in 2019. Letchworth is a daughter of Harmony...

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Rail-Drawn We the People Favored for Belmont Stakes; Derby Winner Rich Strike Third Choice

ELMONT, NY -- With GI Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike (Keen Ice) exiting from post four, a field of eight was drawn Tuesday morning for Saturday's 154th GI Belmont Stakes. The historic, come-from-behind 80-1 Derby upsetter heads to the final leg of the Triple Crown fresh after breaking the norm and skipping the GI Preakness S. He has been installed as the third choice on the morning line at odds of 7-2. The $30,000 claim-to-fame will attempt to be the first non-Triple Crown winner to capture both the Kentucky Derby...

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