Alfred Nuckols Jr. is feeling the heat as the days count down until the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sale of selected yearlings. He’s not warm under the collar because of any pressure with his Saratoga-bound consignment of six, quite the contrary, just feeling the effects of the rising temperatures in Central Kentucky the last few weeks.
The final preparations for the six Hurstland Farm yearlings cataloged for next month's Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sale of selected yearlings is well underway in Midway, Kentucky. Check out the photos from Sunday, July 17 and compare a few with how they looked back in the middle of February.
Sarah Sis took several turns around the shedrow before going out for a light jog Monday morning, her feet piercing the brown dirt with every step. Ingrid Mason sat on her pony just outside the barn, half under the overhang and half out in the open air. She liked what she saw as the filly loosened up.
“Go ahead, give her another turn,” she told her small crew.
Songbird kicked dirt in the face of the Graveyard of Favorites by winning with devasting ease the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga for 3-year-old fillies on Sunday. Now 9-for-9, the daughter of Medaglia d'Oro has moved into rare air as an appreciative crowd at Saratoga Sunday can attest. Photographer Tod Marks has the highlights.
The $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes is set for Tuesday, the second jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown following on the heels of the Queen’s Plate and a race that the connections of Leavem In Malibu probably wish he could leave behind.
The first week of the 2016 Saratoga Race Course meeting comes to a close with the Lucky Coin Stakes topping a nine-race card Monday and a tight race atop the handicapping standings in The Saratoga Special.
The few days that Songbird has spent in upstate New York make it pretty easy to comprehend why those closest to her say they feel no pressure when it comes to maintaining the California filly’s unbeaten record, growing legend and rightful position atop her division and among the best North American racehorses of 2016.
There’s an elephant in the room, and her name is Tepin.
Last year’s champion turf female and Breeders’ Cup Mile winner is absent from the entries for today’s Grade 1 Diana Stakes at Saratoga Race Course and that’s likely causing trainers to breathe a sigh of relief. Seven of the 10 fillies and mares entered in the $500,000 stakes have unsuccessfully gone head-to-head with the dark bay powerhouse on at least one occasion.
Fozzy Stack took a long deep drag on his cigarette and walked toward the end of the barn where assistant Craig Allen was grazing Lake George hopeful Diamond Fields Thursday morning. The bay filly stood still and stared across the paddock fence.
Olive Branch did everything right on the grounds and racetrack leading up to the OBS March 2-year-olds in training sale. She did most everything right – she is a 2-year-old after all – when she arrived at Rick Violette’s barn at Belmont Park shortly after Ralph Evans bought her for $185,000.
The first article in this series about Nicolette Merle-Smith and her OTTB mare, Blazing Beryl, offered hints that their journey to the Retired Racehorse Project’s Thoroughbred Makeover might be a seamless journey sans major challenges.