Hot Rod Charlie, Medina Spirit Among Early PA Derby Noms

GSW Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow) heads the early nominations for the Sept 25 GI Pennsylvania Derby. The nine-furlong marquee race for 3-year-olds highlights a stacked card which features eight stakes races, including five at the graded level. The Pennsylvania Derby was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic. "We're still a few works away, but we're real optimistic about Charlie's next stop, the Pennsylvania Derby," said trainer Doug O'Neill. "The race looks to be coming up tough, which one would expect with a million dollars on the line." Winner...

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Pacific Classic, Haskell Among Options for Hot Rod Charlie

Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow), runner-up to favored Essential Quality (Tapit) in last Saturday's GI Belmont S., returned to the track at his Santa Anita base Friday. The colt arrived from the East Coast Wednesday night. "He jogged a mile and a half and looked fantastic," trainer Doug O'Neill said. "He was happy and full of energy." Regarding the GII Louisiana Derby winner's next possible engagement, O'Neill said, "The [GI] Pacific Classic at Del Mar is a possibility [Aug. 21], the [GI] Haskell at Monmouth is possible [July 17] as is...

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Belmont a Weathervane for Calumet

The mystique around Calumet is such that it aptly discloses a nearly perfect anagram for "Camelot." Both words evoke, not just an idealized past, but a yearning for the restoration of standards eroded during our unchivalrous times. Of course, Calumet has itself had its modern lapses, but there's no mistaking the wholesome intentions animating its latest ownership. True, the methods of Brad Kelley and his team sometimes strike the orthodox observer as idiosyncratic, to put it mildly. But it makes sense to write a new chapter, in their own hand,...

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Hot Rod Charlie Prepares for Belmont

Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow) worked five furlongs in 1:01.60 under Flavien Prat at 7:45 a.m. at Santa Anita Saturday morning in preparation for the June 5 GI Belmont S. The colt worked in tandem with SW Liam's Pride (Liam's Map). "I was very happy with the breeze," said trainer Doug O'Neill. "I got him in 1:01 and out [six furlongs] in 1:13 and change." The winner of the GII Louisiana Derby Mar. 20, the dark bay most recently finished third at 5-1 odds in the May 1 Kentucky Derby. Prat,...

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Early Impressions: Kentucky Derby 147–Part II

LOUISVILLE, KY - With the first Saturday in May just days away, TDN Senior Editor Steve Sherack caught up with the connections of leading GI Kentucky Derby contenders to get some of their 'Early Impressions.' In this edition, we check in with Hermitage Farm General Manager Bill Landes and Ocala, Florida, horseman Eddie Woods. Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow) found another gear in the stretch to punch his ticket to Louisville in the GII Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby. Last year's 94-1 GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up, a $17,000 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky February yearling...

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Oxbow's Hot Rod Charlie Scores Gutsy Win in Louisiana Derby

Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow), the 94-1 GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up, was sent to the front in a heady ride by Joel Rosario, and refused to lose, turning back Midnight Bourbon (Tiznow) to win going away by two lengths in Saturday's GII TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby. O Besos (Orb) rallied nicely up the rail to just miss second by a head. The 5-2 second choice broke inward and bumped with a rival at the start. He led through fractions of :23.10 and :47.04 with Midnight Bourbon shadowing his every move. Midnight...

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Risen Star Upsetter Continuing Sire-Making Tradition

This Saturday, Calumet Farm looks to pull off a bit of an upset in the GII Risen Star with their homebred Santa Cruiser (Dialed In), who broke his maiden last November and ran fourth in his most recent start in the GIII Lecomte S.    Santa Cruiser may go off as one of the longer shots on the board, but if he were to win, it wouldn't be the farm's first upset in the same race. Three years ago, Calumet's homebred Bravazo (Awesome Again-Tiz O'Gold, by Cee's Tizzy) won the...

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Kentucky Sires for 2021: Fifth-Crop Stallions

Today we come to a final group of stallions whose development we're treating separately, before wrapping up our series with a look at those survivors who made it across the highwire and can be grouped together as "Established Sires." (After which we'll also be taking a tour of regional stallions.) In the last couple of instalments, we've observed the Kentucky talent pool in each intake rapidly drying up, so that our review of third- and fourth-crop options respectively encompassed 18 and just six stallions. And we are left with a...

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This Side Up: One Last Apple from the Cox Orchard

How aptly we talk of our walk of life as the Turf. Because raising a horse is just like raising a lawn. Take a microscope out there, if you like, but no human being has actually seen grass grow. Yet one morning toward the end of winter, the birdsong sounds different and you realize you left your coat on the peg without thinking about it. And you look at that lawn and, no argument, it's time to take the mower out of its stable. That moment remains a long way...

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GISP Hot Rod Charlie Works for O'Neill; Targets Lewis

Already a winner of the GI Kentucky Derby with 2016 hero Nyquist (Uncle Mo) and I'll Have Another (Flower Alley) in 2012, trainer Doug O'Neill is looking forward to the New Year with Hot Rod Charlie (Oxbow), Wipe the Slate (Nyquist) and Team Merchants (Nyquist) among his well-regarded sophomores. Hot Rod Charlie worked five furlongs at Santa Anita Saturday in a bullet :59.40, fastest of 64 drills at the distance. A narrow winner in his fourth career start at Santa Anita on October, Hot Rod Charlie closed to finish second-at...

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Oxbow's County Final Scores in Tyro

County Final topped last month's Fasig-Tipton July Horses of Racing Age sale at $475,0000 last month, and began chipping away at that investment first time for the new connections here. A four-length debut winner turf sprinting for trainer John Ennis at Churchill June 5, the grey was second in the GIII Bashford Manor S. on the Louisville dirt 22 days later behind soon-to-be stablemate Cazadero (Street Sense). While Cazadero could only manage fifth in Friday's GII Saratoga Special S., fellow Steve Asmussen pupil Jackie's Warrior (Maclean's Music) impressed in that...

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