Wesley Ward

Golden Pal Leads Ward Ascot Workers

Wesley Ward worked five of his Royal Ascot contenders over the Keeneland turf Friday led by GI Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint winner Golden Pal (Uncle Mo). He covered five panels in a bullet 1:02.80 (1/8) (video). Winner of the GII Shakertown S. last out Apr. 9, the bay is being pointed at the G1 King's Stand S. at the Royal meeting June 14. "I thought he had an unbelievable breeze today," Ward said. "The turf was soggy, and I love to breeze on a deep, soft turf. They come in...

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Happy Soul Looks to Make Amends in Miss Preakness

Gayla Rankin's Happy Soul (Runhappy), a well-beaten sixth last time out in Keeneland's 8 1/2-furlong GI Ashland S. Apr. 8, has already proven her talent sprinting and will attempt to get back on track in Friday's GIII Miss Preakness S. at Pimlico. A runaway winner in two of three starts at two, including Belmont's Astoria S. last June, she was shelved for the rest of the season before resurfacing with a three-length win in Oaklawn's six-panel Dixie Belle S. Feb. 19. In her latest work, she posted a bullet five...

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Ward Says Royal Ascot Contingent His Best Ever

Since he won his first ever race at Royal Ascot in 2009, trainer Wesley Ward has attacked the meeting with quantity and quality and the result has been 12 wins. But he says this year's group, which will consist of at least seven horses, is the best he has ever sent overseas for what is the U.K.'s premier race meeting. "I have never been as strong as this," he said. The surprise is that Ward's group of 2-year-olds, usually his strong suit, is not deep. He only has two, 'TDN...

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U S Navy Flag Filly Romps to Rising Star Honors

Love Reigns (Ire) (f, 2, U S Navy Flag--Humble And Proud {Ire}, by Pivotal {GB}), backed as the 2-1 favorite on debut for Stonestreet Stables and Wesley Ward going 5 1/2 panels over the Keeneland lawn, romped to 'TDN Rising Star' honors. Hustled to the front from her inside draw by Irad Ortiz, Jr, she raced under pressure while traveling nicely through a sharp opening quarter in :22.04. The bay began to let it out a notch rounding the far turn, kicked for home with a 6 1/2-length advantage and...

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Friday Racing Insights: U S Navy Flag Filly Debuts for Ward & Stonestreet Stables

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 2nd-KEE, $80K, MSW, 2yo, f, 5 1/2fT, 1:01 p.m.   Trainer Wesley Ward brings 2-year-old LOVE REIGNS (IRE) to Keeneland on Friday for owners Stonestreet Stables LLC. The daughter of U S Navy Flag is out of the unraced Pivotal (GB) mare Humble And Proud (Ire) making her a half-sister to GISW & near-millionaire Glorious Empire (Holy Roman Emperor {Ire}). Humble And Proud is herself a half-sister to several graded stakes performers including Delsarte (Theatrical {Ire}) who was second in the G2 King Edward VII...

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No Nay Never 2-Year-Old Graduates At Keeneland

1st-Keeneland, $54,416, Msw, 4-28, 2yo, 4 1/2f, :51.92, ft, 4 lengths. NO NAY HUDSON (IRE) (c, 2, No Nay Never--Raw Silk {GSW, $201,958}, by Malibu Moon), bet down to even money, broke straight to the lead from the outside gate to set the pace a path off the rail. He had slight pressure behind from both Top of My Game (Mark Valeski) and stable-mate Ashcroft (Munnings) on either flank turning for home but as the trio straightened, No Nay Hudson kicked on and only lengthened his advantage, puling clear to...

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Dark Angel Firster Impressive At Keeneland

4th-Keeneland, $75,045, Msw, 4-27, 3yo/up, f/m, 5 1/2fT, 1:03.01, gd, 1/2 length. CHARDY PARTY (IRE) (f, 3, Dark Angel {Ire}--Spiritual Lady {GB} {SW-Eng}, by Pastoral Pursuits {GB}), off a step slow from the inside gate at 4-5, raced mid-pack in ninth along the rail behind early front-runner Peligroso (Honor Code). She remained stuck inside, marred by traffic trouble, into the far turn. Passing the eighth pole and still several lengths off the lead, she swung out off the rail into the four path and kicked on, catching the pace-setting Peligroso...

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International Cast Eye Royal Meeting

Entries from nine countries appear on course for the eight Group 1 races at Royal Ascot, headlined by the world's three highest-rated sprinters: Nature Strip (Aus) (Nicconi {Aus}) (Australia, 124), Golden Pal (Uncle Mo) (USA, 121) and Home Affairs (Aus) (I Am Invincible {Aus}) (Australia, 120). The Australian pair--who may face Golden Pal in the G1 King's Stand S. or contest the G1 Platinum Jubilee S.--are joined by fellow Australian invader Artorius (Aus) (Flying Artie {Aus}) (Anthony & Sam Freedman), set to run on the final day of the meeting....

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Medina Spirit Named Florida-Bred Horse of the Year

Medina Spirit (Protonico) was named the 2021 Florida-bred Horse of the Year in a vote by the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders' and Owners' Association board of directors and announced at the FTBOA Awards Gala held Monday night at the Circle Square Cultural Center in Ocala. Bred in Florida by Gail Rice, who was honored with her second consecutive Needles Award Monday evening as the Association's small breeder of the year, and Medina Spirit's dam Mongolian Changa (Brilliant Speed) was also named the FTBOA Broodmare of the Year in a vote by...

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TDN Snippets: Week of Apr. 18 – Apr. 24

There was history being made this past week and there is history yet to be made. Break out your encyclopedias, your preferred tomes of ancient references, any long-dusty papers from years past, and enjoy the show. Who run the world? Girls. Letruska joined elite, and truly rarified air with her successful defense of her GI Apple Blossom title over another Apple Blossom winner in Ce Ce. Only three other mares have accomplished the feat of multiple wins in Oaklawn's signature event for dirt distaffers dating back to 1973, and their...

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Saturday Racing Insights: $550k Uncle Mo Colt Kicks Off at Keeneland

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 2nd-KEE, $100K, MSW, 3yo/up, 5 1/2fT, 1:32 p.m. Trainer Wesley Ward brings 3-year-old LAWMAKER to Keeneland on Saturday for owners Westerberg Limited and Mrs. John Magnier. The son of Uncle Mo, who sold for $550k at the 2020 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, is out of the stakes-winning Big Brown mare Red Sashay, herself a half-sister to GSW Shamaal Nibras (First Samurai) who earned over $580k and GSP & SW New Edition (Stormy Atlantic). Lawmaker has been in consistent work in preparation for his debut including...

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Ribchester's Ruthin Prevails in the Limestone

Ruthin (GB) (Ribchester {Ire}) led home a 'TDN Rising Star' 1-3 finish in Friday's co-featured TVG Limestone S. at Keeneland, as she turned away a bid from her pace-pressing and favored stablemate, fellow 'Rising Star' Her World (Ire) (Caravaggio) and held off a late dive from Derrynane (Quality Road) for a narrow victory. So quickly into stride that jockey John Velazquez reported post-race that he surged back in the irons, Ruthin, a six-length graduate in a course-and-distance maiden 51 weeks ago to become the first winner for her sire, cut...

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