Start in Hong Kong, finish in Texas. Here’s your Saturday Special from around the world. Don’t miss the Cesarewitch at Newmarket or the Queen Elizabeth at Keeneland. Bet, cheer, repeat…bet, cheer, repeat…
Sha Tin. Race 10. 5:45. Just in case you can’t sleep, check out the Cafeteria Handicap in Hong Kong. Dundonnell, fourth in the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf for Juddmonte, has hit the board in his last four tries.
Chepstow. Race 1. 9:00. Juvenile hurdlers begin their journey. Full Blast looks locked and loaded for Paul Nicholls.
Newmarket. Race 1. 9:05. Make way. The flat season is winding down in Britain as the National Hunt Season starts to rumble to life. Ten juveniles clash in the Group 3 Autumn Stakes. Future St. Leger winner Kingston Hill won it last year.
York. Race 4. 10:30. The Coral Sprint Trophy attracts 20 for its $124,500 prize.
Chepstow. Race 4. 10:40. This novice chase had produced the likes of Cue Card, Fingal Bay and Balder Success in the past three runnings. Watch and tab for Cheltenham and beyond.
Newmarket. Race 4. 10:50. The race of the day. The Betfred Cesarewitch pits 34 horses, stretches 2 1/4 miles and runs at handicap weights. Saddler’s Rocks tops the scale at 136 and Jonny Delta scoots in at the bottom at 112. Allen Jerkens would love it…the handicap lives. Teak, Big Easy, Swynmor, Quick Jack, Ted Spread and maybe some others represent the jumpers. Awesome race. Box four horses in a trifecta, it might change your life, although, it’s tricky from here with numbers 24 to 34 lumped in the “field.” Another reason to move to England.
Chepstow. Race 7. 12:30. The John Ayres Memorial Handicap. Solid handicap chasers return for another season. Former Welsh National winner Monbeg Dude leads a battalion of chasing soldiers. Cool race.
Belmont Park. Race 4. 2:23. Tough three-other-than allowance/optional claimer attracts the likes of Bombaguia, Tetradrachm, Sinatra and War Correspondent. The latter ripped through his American debut at Monmouth Park in September.
Laurel Park. Race 5. 2:35. They’ll be dancing in the Dairy Barn if Coturnix bangs out another for Eva and Speedy Smithwick. Oh, who are we kidding? They’re dancing in the dairy barn win lose or draw.
Gulfstream Park West. Race 4. 2:38. That’s a tough one to type…the Eight Miles West (guess Calder is eight miles west of Gulfstream or are we missing something?) attracts hard-hitting Valid who seeks his fifth win this year. Check out Turco Bravo who makes his U.S. debut after winning 10 races in Chile.
Belmont Park. Race 5. 2:54. Her Majesty The Queen sends over Queen’s Prize. Daughter of Dansili makes her American debut after winning one of two for Sir Michael Stoute. Prayed For returns to allowance company for Jimmy Jerkens. Jimmy J. takes on The Queen.
Laurel Park. Race 6. 3:05. Nothing worse than reading “The Estate of…” E Dubai’s Humor runs for the Estate of A. Brice Ridgely. Good man, gone too soon.
Read Sean’s story on Ridgely from Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred. It’s a classic.
Parx Racing. Race 7. 3:07. Ben Colebrook ships Sea Shadow to her home state for the fifth time this year. She’s won her last two and makes her stakes debut for the former assistant to Christophe Clement. Colebrook co-owns the daughter of Jump Start. The venerable Lenape Rim makes start number 35, aiming for win number 11.
Belmont Park. Race 6. 3:25. Hate to admit but we get more excited about Belmont Fall 2-year-old winners than Saratoga 2-year-old winners. Take a good long look at this group.
Parx Racing. Race 8. 3:34. The Cornucopia Stakes.
Laurel Park. Race 7. 3:35. Two-year-olds go long on the turf. Jean Rofe unveiled the aptly named Willisville in the Jamestown at Laurel in September. The Virginia-bred son of Grand Reserve finished third that day, at a cool 73-1.
Keeneland. Race 6. 3:40. Brendan Walsh, Trish Moseley and Corey Lanerie go for four in a row with Bitty Kitty.
Belmont Park. Race 7. 3:56. Trophee makes her second start since being imported from Treve’s trainer in France. Magical Empire makes turf debut for Kimmel. Colorful, a million-dollar daughter of Smart Strike and Raging Fever, just missed at Saratoga.
Parx Racing. Race 9. 4:01. Page McKenney seeks to continue a torrid season, taking on open stakes horses in the First Responder.
Belmont Park. Race 8. 4:27. The Knickerbocker Handicap. The milers – Za Approval, Plainview, Mshawish stretch a furlong. John’s Call winner Tricky Hat shortens up. Legendary and others look perfectly suited to the mile and an eighth. Sheldon Russell makes his way to New York…if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere…
Woodbine. Race 8. 4:36. Ontario-bred 2-year-old fillies clash in the Victorian Queen. Pohdi Pohdi trounced 11 rivals in her debut. She’ll be a stakes winner for 3 Sons Racing Stable by Saturday afternoon. Anybody know who the 3 Sons are…? Prize for the first one to email sean@thisishorseracing with an answer.
Keeneland. Race 9. 5:13. The best 3-year-old filly turf stakes in the country. The Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup. Motion, Mott, Clement, Brown, Proctor, Catalano…Oliver, and Scott.
Fresno. Race 8. 7:00. Unusual Way tries to snap a five-race losing streak in the Harvest for Jeff Bonde and Russell Baze. She’s earned over $700,000 along the way.
Hazel Park. Race 4. 8:45. Can’t beat Sheza Riot. The 8-year-old mare has racked up 11 wins, 11 seconds and 10 thirds from 43 starts. The hard way? The Michigan-bred has earned $102,557.
Retama Park. Race 6. 10:00. The Ken and Sarah Ramsey juggernaut doesn’t miss an opportunity, especially to bolster stakes stats for their stallion Kitten’s Joy. Wesley Ward ships Crown The Kitten for the El Joven. He’s even money against two Texas-breds, an Oklahoma-bred, a Maryland-bred and a Kentucky-bred.
Retama Park. Race 8. 10:54. Share a van? Mike Maker ships the Ramseys’ Right On Kitten for the M2 Technology La Senorita.
Long day. Good luck.