Shirl's Speight

Alabama Rolls Strong Draw Amid This Weekend's Graded Stakes

"What's in a name?" Spurning Master Shakespeare and embracing anecdotal evidence, consider the tale of how Saratoga's Oklahoma Training Track got its name. Horsemen complained that the distance across Union Avenue to the main course was such a hike that it might as well be in Boomer Sooner land. Another piece from the past concerns the name of the Alabama S. Dating to 1872, the race was given that moniker after the Derby-winning owner William Cottrell of Mobile asked if it could be dubbed after his home state, instead of...

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Country Grammer Leads North American Charge Into DWC Night

WinStar Farm, Commonwealth Thoroughbreds and Zedan Racing's defending G1 Dubai World Cup champion Country Grammer (Tonalist) tops a dozen North American entries for the Dubai World Cup program at Meydan Racecourse Saturday, Mar. 25. The prospective fields were revealed overnight by the Dubai Racing Club. The 6-year-old is one of 13 in the field for the $12-million centerpiece of the meeting, including no fewer than eight runners from Japan topped by Panthalassa (Jpn) (Lord Kanaloa {Jpn}), who registered a half-length defeat of Country Grammer in the G1 Saudi Cup last...

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Dubai In Play For Godolphin's Lemon Pop Following February S.

Stepping up to the top level for the first time in what has already been a productive career, Godolphin's Lemon Pop (Lemon Drop Kid) ran a strong 1600 metres and comfortably held a final-furlong rally from the classy Red le Zele (Jpn) (Lord Kanaloa {Jpn}) to land Sunday's February S. at Tokyo Racecourse. A fourth consecutive American-bred winner of the 'Win and You're In' qualifier for the GI Longines Breeders' Cup Classic, Lemon Pop will remain over shorter trips and holds an invitation to the G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen in...

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Godolphin's Lemon Pop Primed For Group 1 Success in February S.

Tokyo Racecourse plays host to the first of 24 Group 1s on the JRA circuit, Sunday's February S. going a one-turn mile on the dirt track, and with the race's two-time defending champion Cafe Pharoah (American Pharoah) preparing for next Saturday's G1 Saudi Cup and with would-be favourite Gilded Mirror (Jpn) (Orfevre {Jpn}) having recently been retired due to injury, the race is there for the taking for the wonderfully consistent US-bred Lemon Pop (Lemon Drop Kid). The 5-year-old, purchased for $70,000 as a weanling at the 2018 Keeneland November...

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In Historic First, Fipke's Shirl's Speight To Run In February S. In Japan

Charles Fipke's Grade I winner and 'TDN Rising Star' Shirl's Speight (Speightstown) will become the first foreign horse to ever run in Japan's G1 February S., Fipke's advisor Sid Fernando confirmed to the TDN Thursday afternoon. Set for Feb. 19, the race is over a mile on the dirt, and trainer Roger Attfield and Fipke are both set to travel to the Tokyo showpiece. "He's going," Fernando said of the 2022 GI Maker's Mark Mile hero. "He's doing well with Roger Attfield down in Florida." The February S. is one...

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Woodbine's Field of Dreams

Woodbine is a track of two tales: history and innovation. The home of the historic Queen's Plate--which will be run for the 163rd time Sunday thus making it the longest continuously run race in North America--has been undergoing renovations that on a conceptual level, might border on the fantastical. That is, until it is seen in person. At the forefront of structural renewal, Woodbine, which covers 684-acres of prime real estate in the Toronto suburb of Etobicoke, currently stands against a backdrop of development that would make most other racing...

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Letter to the Editor: F-T Saratoga Sale to Feature 17 Yearlings from Phipps Families

By B. Jason Brooks The Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Selected Yearling Sale is less than two weeks away and potential buyers are marking up their sales catalogs while researching the accomplished families of those being offered. At the 2019 Saratoga Sale, four yearlings tracing back to Phipps foundation mare Blitey sold for a collective $4.05 million, one of them being an undefeated Tapit colt named Flightline who has become a multiple Grade I superstar. Thoroughbred Daily News columnist and pedigree expert Sid Fernando recently noted in story that the Phipps female "families...

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Attfield Closes in on the 2000 Club

In an era where robust stables seem to dominate the upper echelon of racing, dual Hall of Famer Roger Attfield has proven that while numbers matter, how you handle the ones you've got is often of greater consequence. And although one operation might attain a certain number of wins at half the speed of another, in part buoyed by its sheer loft, crossing the wire first remains the great equalizer. Illustrating that importance of reaching the milestone following a lifetime of churning out the highest quality runners, Attfield remains only...

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TDN Snippets: Week of Apr. 11 – Apr. 17

This week's TDN Snippets have a little international flavor, while also appreciating one of America's best, and most versatile, stallions. Can lightning strike twice? LNJ's Lighthouse (Mizzen Mast)'s Group 1 exploits in Australia have been well documented, and she's set to be offered through the Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale in May. The same connections have sent Ivy League (Medaglia d'Oro), formerly with Richard Mandella, to the Ciaron Maher/David Eustace stable trying to repeat the magic formula. All Purpose. All Places. All Power... It's not just a marketing slogan, as...

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Shirl's Speight Upsets Maker's Mile

Dispatched at 9-1 despite entering on a two-race win streak, 'TDN Rising Star' Shirl's Speight (Speightstown) sling-shotted his way to his first top-level score in Keeneland's GI Maker's Mile S. Friday afternoon. Away in good order, the Fipke homebred bided his time in second last, running off the fence, as GI Shoemaker Mile winner and last out GI Breeders' Cup Mile runner-up Smooth Like Strait (Midnight Lute) dictated terms, putting up early splits of :24.95 and :49.63. Inching up a bit on the backstretch run, Shirl's Speight still had plenty...

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Greatest Honour Returns in Challenger

After finishing behind the likes of future graded winners Olympiad (Speightstown), Speaker's Corner (Street Sense) and Known Agenda (Curlin) in his first three starts, the homebred followed up on a Gulfstream maiden win in late 2020 to take the GIII Holy Bull S. and GII Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S. in his next three appearances. He makes his first start since finishing a well-beaten third behind Known Agenda in the GI Curlin Florida Derby last March. (Click for more from trainer Shug McGaughey in Steve Sherack's APB series) Also on...

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Casse Has Three Chances to Win Third Woodbine Mile

Mark Casse has a strong chance to take home his third GI Ricoh Woodbine Mile with a trio of contenders set to line up for Saturday's "Win and You're In" event for the GI Breeders' Cup Mile. Gary Barber's War of Will (War Front) tries to secure a Grade I double here off a win in Keeneland's GI Maker's Mile July 10. Winner of the GIII LeComte S., GII Risen Star S. and GI Preakness S. last season, the bay capped his sophomore term with a ninth in the GI...

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