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Friday, December 23, 2005

Christmas Eve Eve News and Notes

- Remember when Calder used to race on Christmas Day? I believe it was the only track that would do so. Forget about that now. However, three tracks will be racing on Xmas Eve – Calder, Fair Grounds at La Downs, and Philly Park.

Santa Anita springs into full action on the day after Christmas, and a couple of prime contenders for the G1 Malibu have worked out this week. Greeley’s Galaxy went seven furlongs in 1:27 on Monday prepping for his first effort since the Preakness.

"He had a minor bleeding problem," [Warren] Stute said, "and we fired his ankles before we turned him out at San Luis Rey Downs. Mr. Hughes has had him scoped every time he's worked since he's come back and no blood has shown, so that's a good sign. Generally when you turn a horse out he gets over it. He's been back with us now for about three months." [Bloodhorse]
And Wilko breezed a half in :49 1/5 on Thursday. "He did it real easy," trainer Craig Dollase said. "We're all set." And I'm all set to check out the pp's in search of a horse with some sharp recent form with which to bet against these guys and make some cash.

- It seems as if the Aqueduct racino is not the only one behind schedule in New York. It’s been six months now since Yonkers Raceway shut down for casino construction, and horsemen are dubious of the scheduled April 1 reopening date.

As opposed to Aqueduct, at least construction is actually going on there. But horsemen like Standardbred Owners Association head Joe Faraldo think that racing could be happening there now too.
"We want to put up a 'chicken coop' (a temporary structure that would house the judges, timer and announcer) in the winner's circle and race on Monday and Tuesday afternoons," Faraldo. "There is nothing that's not good about the chicken coop. A guy sketched one out on a napkin for Hazel Park (in Detroit) and built it in one week for $48,000. And we (the SOA) have told Yonkers we will pick up the cost."
"They told us from the beginning that under no circumstances would they be closed longer than 4-5 months….I think they took advantage of the opportunity to not race during the winter. Usually, the word of Yonkers Raceway was pretty good, but this time I think it was intentionally misleading." [NY Daily News]
You would think that if track management, which claimes that "It is not a safe place to race," really wanted to race, they could. After all, it’s not like they have to accommodate a live crowd. Only a few hundred people at most were showing up at the track anyway, so they could very well conduct racing for the OTB audience only. In fact, they could throw down some cones and race around the parking lot if they really wanted to.

- If anyone out there owns a 14-year old pacer which you would like to send to Monticello Raceway to run for a $4000 purse, please contact Eric Warner in the race office by calling (845) 794-4100, ext. 557. [US Trotting Association] The track is having problems filling the Au Revior pace for 14 year olds, conducted on the last day of racing of the year at the upstate NY harness track, and just before those horses reach their mandatory retirement age on Jan 1. In fact, the track will even accept trotters. If you ask nicely, perhaps you can enter your 14 year old kid.

- Giacomo is still working slowly for his 4 year-old debut; this morning he breezed six furlongs in 1.16:80.


Anonymous said...

...i wouldn't be too anxious to bet against Greeley's Galaxy...the horse is a very fine sprinter, and he can definitely fire fresh...i bet him first time out, and he was running a big race from the rail before Stevens had to yank his head off, due to a serious traffic problem...i bet him back in start #2 (another sprint) and he crushed a short but very-good field in fast time...i haven't seen the pp's yet (or my workout reports, for that matter), but i anticipate i may be on Greeley's Galaxy...the race looks right in his wheelhouse...

...coupla other things...i'm a bit surprised that Fusaichi Samurai isn't entered here...i'll have to check, but i don't remember receiving any workout notices on him for a couple of weeks now...i hope he hasn't suffered another setback...

...also, i was looking through this week's Gaming Today, a local Vegas rag that's generally worthless, but does have a page devoted to SoCal racing that's written by Ed Golden, who also does the Stable Notes on the SoCal tracks' i'm sure he "hears things" around the track...anyway, he said "look for two highly-regarded colts on Opening Day, Point of Impact and Cindago" it looks like Point of Impact is a go, and apparently he's no secret around the for Cindago, he recently ran second to the very fast Dinner Magic in a maiden race, with another good colt, Refinery, behind him in third...Refinery came back to win by open lengths, so no doubt Cindago is a nice one...i'm assuming he and Point of Impact will be in the same race together, but who knows...

Anonymous said...

...just checked...Fu-Sam did work on Dec 18, six days after his Dec 12 work...he's right on bad...

Alan Mann said...

Hey Walter -

OK, I'll take your advice on GG under consideration! Point of Impact gets a mention in the Form today. Cindago too:

Bob Baffert, who trains Bob and John, has a number of promising Derby prospects, some of whom have yet to race. Point Determined and the imposing Point of Impact, both sons of Point Given, and Royal Legacy, a son of Monarchos, all are maidens who will run early in the meet. "It's like LAX at Thanksgiving," Baffert said. "They're all sitting on the tarmac, ready to fly."

Point Determined and Royal Legacy were entered in Monday's sixth race at Santa Anita, which also attracted Cindago, a John Sadler-trained colt who finished second in his lone start on Nov. 5.

Have you heard anything about these two from Baffert?

Walter, have a great holiday! And a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year.

Anonymous said...

...Royal Legacy?...well, i've heard of an unraced Baffert named Regal Legacy, he was mentioned in the same article as Point of Impact...Haskin must've gotten the names mixed up...Point Determined i'm not familiar any case, i'm sure Baffert ain't thrilled that they've drawn the rail (myself, i'm not happy about Greeley's Galaxy drawing inside)...regardless, they figure to have their hands full with Cindago anyway...with the strong 2nd to stakes-level sprinter Dinner Magic, and 3rd-place finisher Refinery coming back to win impressively, Cindago will be hard to deny...incidentally, Refinery is entered going long on Wednesday vs. the hot Frankel prospect Ramsgate...i took a small Derby future on Ramsgate after his maiden win, i was very impressed with how strong he finished that day...was really reaching and striding out powerfully, should make a real nice route horse...looking forward to that race...