Elisabeth Garrido stacks bales of hay into the shape of a horse, straps reins around a mock head and sets off on an imaginary but energetic ride, whipping the hay with a riding crop. It’s part of the do-it-yourself training for her dream: to be one of the few women ever to become a full-fledged jockey at Mexico’s only major horse racetrack, and perhaps move north of the border as well. The 27-year-old is one of two female apprentice jockeys now training to break into the historically male-dominated sport in Mexico, which hasn’t seen a woman ride professionally since 2005. Garrido is so committed to joining the approximately 200 registered jockeys here who are skilled enough to ride a half-ton thoroughbred at 55 mph that she moved in to the Hippodrome of the Americas in Mexico City.
Favored Main Sequence, slow out of the gate to trail the field, charged home on the outside to nip Imagining at the wire in the $500,000 Sword Dancer Invitational Aug. 17 on the inner lawn at Saratoga Race Course.
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (AP) — Main Sequence beat Imagining by a head Sunday in the Grade 1 $500,000 Sword Dancer Invitational at Saratoga Race Course.
Even-money choice Stopchargingmaria, always prominent for jockey John Velazquez, prevailed in the $600,000 Alabama Stakes for her second top-level win in a row at the Saratoga Race Course meet Aug. 16.
Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens was seated on a bench at Del Mar near the stable area racing office the morning of Aug. 15.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Istanford led all the way in winning the $96,350 Sandy Blue Handicap for 3-year-old fillies by 3 1/4 lengths at Del Mar on Friday.
Champion mare and 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta never set foot in New York or in the upstate town of Saratoga Springs, but her firstborn son Cozmic One arrived at the renowned spa city’s legendary racetrack last month.
Larry Collmus’ tenure as track announcer at Churchill Downs barely got past the starting gate. Collmus, who took over in the spring as race caller at the home of the Kentucky Derby, on Wednesday accepted the job as track announcer for the New York Racing Association, starting in the spring of 2015. ”I’m trading one dream job for another,” Collmus said. Collmus, 47, will start calling races on the New York circuit in April, the final month of the Aqueduct Racetrack spring meet, the NYRA said in its announcement.
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (AP) — Miss Frost took the lead in mid-stretch and held off a late bid from Final Redemption to win the $100,000 Tenski by a half-length on Monday at Saratoga Race Course.
Moulin de Mougin secured the biggest win of her career and gave jockey Mike Smith a reason to celebrate his 49th birthday in the $250,000 John Mabee Stakes on the grass Aug. 10 at Del Mar.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Moulin de Mougin rallied to win the $250,000 John C. Mabee Stakes for older fillies and mares by a half-length at Del Mar on Sunday.
With celebration and nostalgia, the 2014 Hall of Fame class that began tinged with controversy was inducted Aug. 8 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., in a ceremony that honored two equine champions, Ashado and Curlin.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Master the Blues won the $96,560 Daisycutter Handicap by a neck at Del Mar on Friday.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Living The Life rallied to win the $80,000 BOMA San Diego Purse by 1 1/2 lengths Thursday in her U.S. debut at Del Mar.
California Chrome is expected to return to the work tab Aug. 8 with his first official move since running fourth in the June 7 Belmont Stakes, according to connections of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Sunset Glow led all the way in winning the $200,000 Sorrento Stakes for 2-year-old fillies by 3 1/4 lengths at Del Mar on Wednesday.
Saratoga Race Course is tipping its top hat to John Morrissey, the Irish-born fighter-gambler-politician who punched his way to national fame before the Civil War, launched what’s now the nation’s oldest racetrack and got elected to public office in New York despite scant formal education and an unsavory background. The Irish American Heritage Museum in Albany is using the track’s Irish-American Day on Wednesday to highlight Morrissey’s role in establishing Saratoga’s first racing meet in 1863 and his opening of the race course at its current location a year later. Other than closures forced by moral crusaders and World War II, Saratoga Race Course has been going strong since it opened on Aug. 2, 1864.
Skyway held off fast-closing Henry’s Holiday by a length Sunday in the $300,000 Best Pal Stakes for 2-year-olds at Del Mar. Ridden by Stewart Elliott, Skyway ran six furlongs on Polytrack in 1:16.67 and paid $6.20, $3.60 and $2.80 as the 2-1 favorite. Henry’s Holiday ridden by Tyler Baze returned $4.40 and $3.20, while Bad Read Sanchez was another length back in third and paid $3 to show. Both are in their first summers at Del Mar. The victory, worth $120,000, increased Skyway’s career earnings to $157,390, with two wins in three starts.
Iotapa won the $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes for older fillies and mares by a half-length Saturday at Del Mar. Ridden by Joe Talamo, Iotapa ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.04 and paid $4, $2.60 and $2.40 as the even-money favorite. Broken Sword returned $4.40 and $3.40, while Parranda was another 2 1/4 lengths back in third and paid $3.80 to show. Broken Sword went to the lead out of the gate and Iotapa moved up on the outside turning into the stretch. She took a short lead but had to dig deep to hold off Broken Sword, who carried four pounds less than the 123 carried by Iotapa.
Eric Guillot attended the post-position draw for the $1,500,000 Whitney Invitational Handicap wearing a shirt that said “I Got Haters Everywhere,” but those who bet Moreno loved the Cajun trainer after his speedster stole the show Aug. 2 at Saratoga.
Trainer Jimmy Takter exudes confidence in his trio of trotters heading into the $1 million Hambletonian on Saturday at the Meadowlands Racetrack. Takter sends out the first three choices in the stakes for 3-year-olds, starting with Father Patrick, the 4-5 favorite. Should Father Patrick, the winner of 15 in a row, unexpectedly falter, Takter is well fortified with Trixton, the 7-2 second choice, and Nuncio at 9-2. All that horsepower has Takter thinking big.
Del Mar Thoroughbred Club announced it will be moving its turf races to the main track through the upcoming weekend after another breakdown on the newly installed course July 31.
Will Take Charge and Palace Malice meet again Aug. 2 in the $1.5 million Whitney Handicap, squaring off at Saratoga Race Course as the top two choices in a field of nine drawn for the 1 1/8-mile test.
Father Patrick puts a 15-race winning streak on the line as the 4-5 favorite in the $1 million Hambletonian on Saturday at the Meadowlands Racetrack. A winner of 16 of 17 races, Father Patrick drew post No. 10. Father Patrick is one of three entrants for trainer Jimmy Takter who is well positioned to capture his third Hambletonian. Takter also sends out 7-2 second choice Trixton from post No. 7 and 9-2 third choice Nuncio from post No. 5.
Ron Sanchez will send former hype horse Social Inclusion –coming off a career-worst seventh in the July 27 William Hill Haskell Invitational Stakes — to trainer Chad Brown in hopes of hitting the restart button, the owner announced July 28 via Twitter.
DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) — Big Macher won the $300,000 Bing Crosby Stakes by a half-length Sunday at Del Mar.
Kaleem Shah’s Bayern ran them off their feet July 27 in the $1 million William Hill Haskell Invitational, taking eight other sophomores gate-to-wire at Monmouth Park. Longines Kentucky Oaks winner Untapable, favored at 7-5, finished fifth.