Who’s That Guy?

The thin green sign hangs from the white nylon rope, just like all the others around the backside of Keeneland. The wind knocks it into the concrete side of Barn 29, just up the hill from the track kitchen. A simple nameplate denoting a parking place. White, stenciled lettering. Every trainer stabled at Keeneland has one.

Sovereign Duty wins Royal Chase

"Image"Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard swept the first two placings in Keeneland’s only steeplechase, the $160,125 Royal Chase (Gr. I) Thursday afternoon as Sovereign Duty rallied in the final yards to edge Sweet Shani by a neck. The winner, ridden by Danielle Hodsdon, covered the 2 1/2 miles and 13 fences in 4:58.13. Best Attack finished third.

Back on Track

Todd Pletcher’s back. Did he really go anywhere? The reigning Eclipse Award-winning trainer appeared to spin off the Derby trail as the Derby preps began to wane. The Toyota Blue Grass loomed as the last tollbooth. In typical Pletcher style, he paid the toll for his car and the car behind him (and tipped the … Read more

Spring Ahead

Welcome to Keeneland. Happy Spring. The Keeneland faithful spent the last two days apologizing for the weather – I told them, ‘don’t listen to the Florida sun chasers, if you’ve spent the winter in Pennsylvania, this is spring.’ Yes, finally spring. Finally Keeneland. Handicapped the Ashland and parked myself next to Bobby Frankel for the … Read more

Your Turn, Brother

The first time, it shocked me. The bustling field for the Supreme Novices Hurdle turned down the racecourse for the first, the Cheltenham crowd erupted with its traditional roar, the bon voyage for the greatest jump racing in the world. Yeah, they cheer the start of the race, the start of the Festival. That was … Read more

Mile Markers

It was a Bruce Haynes roadtrip. Get up at 3 in the morning, coffee in the thermos, a bag of almonds, suit on a hanger, radio on blare and on the road. It’s only 480 miles from Landenberg, Pa. to Bristol, Va., should be there by 10:30.  First speeding ticket by 8:00 – 77 in a … Read more

Back in the tack

The blog police will be coming to get me soon, so sorry for staying away from this space. Blame it on the final edition of Steeplechase Times, which finally went to the printer today. Or calendar-sales season. Or parenthood. Or the Christmas trip my wife, Sam, and I are taking with the boys – we’re … Read more

Fourth bullet hits target

The following article, written by ST’s Tom Law and the winner of the Bill Leggett Breeders’ Cup Writing Award in 2005, is reprinted from the November 6, 2004 issue of Thoroughbred Times.