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Saratoga 2006 - is here! And they're off ...

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  • Saratoga 2006 - is here! And they're off ...

    Is anyone else excited that finally Saratoga time is almost here?

    Saratoga Race Course's 36-day meet begins Wednesday, July 26, and runs through Labor Day, Sept. 4. There is racing every day except Tuesdays, and the first race is at 1 p.m. Exceptions are Travers Day, Saturday, Aug. 26, when the first race is 12:30 p.m. and Friday, Sept. 1, when twilight racing debuts with a 3 p.m. start.

    The Jim Dandy Stakes (G2) which will be aired on ESPN, is July 29th and the field will include Preakness winner, Bernardini, who put in a bullet of a workout at Belomont yesterday.

    DRF 7-18-06

    Bernardini shows he's fast and fit
    Tom Albertrani is not one of those trainers who prefer to work their horses fast. So take it as a sign that Preakness winner Bernardini is champing at the bit to run in the July 29 Jim Dandy following a five-furlong workout clocked in 58.70 seconds Monday morning at Belmont Park.

    After three relatively slow breezes, Bernardini was ready to roll on a steamy morning, carving out fractions of 12.62 seconds, 24.14, and 35.01, meaning he got his last quarter in 23.69 seconds. Belmont clockers caught him galloping out six furlongs in 1:12.28.
    Anyone else looking forward to this classic summertime racing meet?
    Last edited by Glimmerglass; Jul. 26, 2006, 08:49 AM.

  • #2
    Wish I could go! That is my old stomping grounds (Ballston Spa) and my favorite birthday ever is still the one when my Dad took me, an 8 year old horse-crazy, horseless kid, to have breakfast and watch the horses work. <sigh>
    For the best pies EVER go to Mourningkill Bakery in Ballston Spa, my family still has a huge orchard and makes the best pies!

    Maybe next year...
    Life is short, do it now. www.dleestudio.com
    My CANTER cutie, Steely Dan - IL
    My Exceller cutie, Ace (aka FiftyThreeCards)- NY


    • Original Poster

      No Jazil in Travers Stakes

      BloodHorse 7-18-06 "Jazil to Miss Travers with Bruised Cannon Bone"

      The Travers could be thin with top-end talent - no Discreet Cat, no Barbaro, no Jazil, no Bob and John, no Bluegrass Cat (Haskell instead, I think), no Deputy Glitters (same), no Showing Up (will be running on turf) ....


      • Original Poster

        Travers Stakes presented by the NY Lottery

        (Cross posted from another thread as it fits here well)

        The New York Racing Association announced Tuesday that the New York Lottery is sponsoring this year's Mid-Summer Derby.

        Talk about cheapening the image - these guys couldn't get something a tad more premium like Charles Schwab or another financial company? You have more key target folks up from Manhattan and Wall Street for the Spa then most other sports events save for the US Open and Yankees games. Why then have the lottery, why, why?

        They couldn't instead get Chas. Freihofer? Adirondack Water? etc.


        • #5
          Private sponsorship is great. One public agency sponsoring another (NYRA is a non-profit but heavily state controlled organization) is yet another drain on the taxpayers of NY.

          The fact is that it's just too difficult to go out and court private industry and the Lottery operates all those nifty slot machines...
          F O.B
          Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
          Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique


          • Original Poster

            The Green Monkey cometh!

            Times Union Newspaper
            $16 million racehorse coming to Saratoga
            The Green Monkey, the 2-year-old thoroughbred sold for a record price, is expected to debut this season

            By TIM WILKIN, Staff writer
            Wednesday, July 19, 2006

            ELMONT -- The Green Monkey is coming to Saratoga Springs.

            It's not a new restaurant or automobile, and it's not a new liquid concoction at Siro's. The Green Monkey is a thoroughbred race horse, and he's expected to make his first career start at Saratoga Race Course sometime during the 138th meet, which starts Wednesday.

            The Green Monkey, a 2-year-old son of Forestry, sold for a record $16 million in March at a Fasig-Tipton horses-in-training auction at Miami's Calder Race Course.

            Trainer Todd Pletcher said he has not chosen a race for what is sure to be a ballyhooed debut, but he hopes he will run sometime during the Spa's 36 days.

            ``He is a very laid-back horse, very easy to train,'' Pletcher said at his barn at Belmont Park on Wednesday morning. ``He might be the most highly anticipated 2-year-old to race there, who knows. I know he's the most expensive.''

            The Green Monkey was bought by Coolmore Stud, a group led by John Magnier and Michael Tabor. He was named after a Barbados golf club of the same name that has connections with Coolmore. He went for such a high price after running an eighth of a mile in under 10 seconds before the sale. Horses typically cover that distance in about 12 seconds.

            Pletcher, who has won the past four Spa training titles, said he is not going to rush this horse.

            ``I don't want to make any mistakes with him,'' Pletcher said. ``I'm not saying he has to win the first time out, but I am going to play it careful and make sure he is as ready as we can get him. Every once in a while you run one and think `If I had just one or two extra works with him.' I won't do that with him.''
            Photo of the aforementioned Golf Course: The Green Money in Sand


            • #7
              I've heard he's not training well.
              F O.B
              Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
              Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique


              • Original Poster

                Hmmmm ... not accomodating the Whitney stable?

                Perhaps Marylou getting the shaft, to some degree, would spurn her and John to buy back the old Greentree Stable facility which is the Stonerside Stable at Saratoga Last I knew it was forsale for $19 million ...

                Saratogian 7-23-06 "Whitney name big as ever in racing"

                So it came as a shock when Marylou and her husband John Hendrickson learned they were not going to get stalls for all their horses at Saratoga Race Course; seven are stabled at Saratoga Raceway.

                [John] feels that, having discussed this with Hayward over a period of time, the stable has been treated unfairly -- enough so that Whitney colors may not race at Saratoga in 2007.

                'It is not -- absolutely not -- that anyone here is looking for special treatment,' Hendrickson said. 'I just think that with everything that Marylou and the Whitneys have done for racing, especially Saratoga racing, that this could have been worked out.'


                • Original Poster

                  On the topic of Saratoga ...

                  Times Union 7-23-06 "On Saratoga farm, a dream is born; Thoroughbred foal holds promise of thrills for racing owner, even though odds don't favor a winner."

                  "We do call it a business because once in a while your assets appreciate to a level you can't imagine. You can end up with a horse, by luck or wise choices, that can change your life. You can't do that with a sailboat." -Joe McMahon

                  A very nice, lengthy article on the McMahon's operations (of Funny Cide fame most notably) and foaling operation. Pictures as well a single page, print version here


                  • #10
                    Mrs Whitney's new trainer has done her no favors. She should take her stock back to Zito.
                    F O.B
                    Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
                    Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique


                    • #11
                      I love Saratoga...my dad took me 3 times as a teenager...its some of the fondest memories of my childhood..I am really hoping to get up there this year..but my mom is really sick, so I am not sure I will be able to do it..Hope everybody who does go, has a really wonderful time.


                      • Original Poster

                        Good news with the security barns

                        Last year I recall more then a few cases were some very good horses did not perform up to snuff and a credible defense was the cramped, mandated security barn stay. Thankfully it has been improved this year ...

                        DRF 7-24-06 "New security barns get thumbs up "
                        The security barns are used to house horses beginning six hours before they are to race. Only track vets and the horse's trainers are allowed in those barns, which first debuted at Belmont in the spring of 2005.

                        At Saratoga, where there is a premium on stall space, NYRA used only two barns that housed about 30 horses and utilized temporary stalls to house another 70. The temporary stalls, constructed under tents, were only 9 feet by 9 feet and had limited electrical capacity. Moreover, the plywood floors initially did not have rubber mats, and horsemen feared their horses slipping and injuring themselves.

                        By brokering a deal with Saratoga Gaming and Harness to acquire 47 stalls at the harness track, NYRA was able to utilize an existing barn with 50 stalls as a third security barn. Moreover, the temporary stalls are much bigger - 11 feet by 12 feet - than last year and are each equipped with individual electrical outlets. Those stalls are under a tent.

                        By eliminating two of three temporary structures, there is much more room in the security-barn area, including an area for horses to graze.


                        • Original Poster

                          Horse vans galore up the Northway

                          And interesting article on the migration up from Belmont to Spa

                          Albany Times Union 7-25-06 "The cast rolls in for Spa's show"

                          Once a year in late July, the busiest weekend for moving racehorses, the leads to Saratoga Race Course, home of the country's premier thoroughbred meet. By the time racing begins Wednesday, 1,655 horses will be stabled there, most arriving in vans streaming up the Northway.

                          As [Shug] McGaughey's horses fill the four vans, Don Gambill, an executive with Sallee Horse Vans, one of the country's two major horse-transport companies, watches and talks on his cellphone.

                          Sallee has 16 vans heading from Belmont to Saratoga. Brook Ledge, the other major carrier, has 22. Gambill says he's counted 14 vans from smaller companies this morning at Belmont.

                          "It's like the circus leaving town," he says.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Glimmerglass
                            Times Union 7-23-06 "On Saratoga farm, a dream is born; Thoroughbred foal holds promise of thrills for racing owner, even though odds don't favor a winner."

                            "We do call it a business because once in a while your assets appreciate to a level you can't imagine. You can end up with a horse, by luck or wise choices, that can change your life. You can't do that with a sailboat." -Joe McMahon

                            A very nice, lengthy article on the McMahon's operations (of Funny Cide fame most notably) and foaling operation. Pictures as well a single page, print version here
                            We purchased one of our broodmares from the McMahon's. Very pleased with our mare and would do business with them again. They're so nice!

                            This will be the 2nd year in a row that we won't be going to Saratoga. Next year though!! Come hec or high water!!


                            • Original Poster

                              Jim Dandy Stakes (G2) July 29th

                              Preakness winning Bernardini will be facing a grandson of Spectacular Bid: Minister's Bid (by Deputy Minister out of Princess Pietrina - Spectacular Bid)

                              Minister's Bid is a perfect 2 starts, 2 wins with wide applause for his efforts:

                              Brisnet Daily Notebook Keeneland 4-13-06
                              6TH - MINISTER'S BID (Deputy Minister) had an amazing career debut for trainer John Ward as he broke dead last in this maiden special event before gradually making his way through the field on the backstretch and taking over the lead coming off the turn. The three-year-old colt then widened that lead through the stretch to hit the finish line 8 3/4 lengths clear of the field, making mincemeat of the Keeneland speed bias.


                              • #16
                                Anyone planning on attending the races? I'll be there alot. If anyone wants to meet up for some racing chat or even an adult beverage send me a PT.
                                F O.B
                                Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
                                Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique


                                • Original Poster

                                  Originally posted by Linny
                                  Anyone planning on attending the races? I'll be there alot. If anyone wants to meet up for some racing chat or even an adult beverage send me a PT.
                                  My wife and I will only be able to get there for the last weekend So we'll try and see if we can attend the twilight race card on Friday Sep 1 (The With Anticipation Stakes for 2-yr olds on turf) and most certainly go see with other friends The Forgo (G1) and The Woodward(G1) on Sat Sep 2nd. Drinks will be a necessity


                                  • #18
                                    I'm missing Saratoga this year (now I am in the Pacific Northwest it is a bit of a trek) but will be wearing my best hat to the barn tomorrow in honor of the day. Perhaps a dress as well, though the muck boots might spoil the look...

                                    Most of all I will miss backstretch mornings like the one when I saw Angel Cordero exercising a horse, and he waved to me.
                                    Publisher, http://www.endurance-101.com
                                    Blog: http://blog.seattlepi.com/horsebytes/


                                    • Original Poster

                                      Reference pages

                                      The Times Union's Saratoga Page - good to bookmark!

                                      Thursday 7-27 will be the Todd Pletcher bobblehead giveway.

                                      Saratoga Special daily paper & updated from ST Times

                                      Today's big feature is the six-furlong G3 $100k Schuylerville Stakes for 2-year-old fillies, a race not held last year but was recently won by Ashado in 2003.

                                      PP HORSE, JOCKEY; TRAINER
                                      1 Chief Officer, Velasquez C; Mott William I
                                      2 Expertise, Prado E S; Lukas D Wayne
                                      3 Baroness Thatcher, Bejarano R; Romans Dale
                                      4 Becky's Flute, Desormeaux K; J Jerkens H Allen
                                      5 Angel Island, Bridgmohan S X; Blasi Scott
                                      6 Frances G, Borel C H; Pitts Helen
                                      7 Audacious Chloe, Gomez G K; Pletcher Todd A
                                      8 Cotton Blossom, Velazquez J R; Pletcher Todd A
                                      9 Desire to Excel, Smith M E; Breen Kelly J


                                      • #20

                                        Can we catch up on Weds the 2nd? I'll be up for the Dominion Award Luncheon and the races later that day...