The Pizza Man Leads Eleven Into G2 Hollywood Turf Cup Thursday

The Pizza Man winning the American St. Leger at Arlington in August

The Pizza Man winning the American St. Leger at Arlington in August

The Pizza Man, fourth in the Grade I Canadian International and fifth in the Grade I Northern Dancer. Prior to those efforts, comes into Del Mar from Woodbine to take on eleven distance-loving grass Thoroughbreds Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, in the Grade II $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup, the kick-off event of Del Mar’s fall Turf Festival.

The 5-year old son of English Channel had reeled off five straight victories over the grass prior to venturing into the Great White North. Three of those victories came after an eight month freshening and all came in Illinois, including the G3 Stars ‘n Stripes. The Pizza Man, trained by Roger Brueggemann, draws the outside #11 post.

The Hollywood Turf Cup will be the first race in Del Mar history to be contested at the… Read the rest of this entry >>

Jacobson’s Entry Hard to Pass in G3 Fall Highweight at Aqueduct Thursday

Salutos Amigos winning the G3 Bold Ruler at Belmont Park

Salutos Amigos winning the G3 Bold Ruler at Belmont Park. Photo by Adam Coglianese

By Jenny Kellner

Thanksgiving Day at Aqueduct Racetrack will find horses and humans packing on a few extra pounds when a field of 10 gathers ’round for the 101st running of the Grade 3, $300,000 Fall Highweight Handicap, the traditional holiday feature at the Big A.

First race post time on Thursday will be 11:25 a.m., with the nine-race card set to conclude at approximately 3:10 p.m.

As the 2-1 pick on the morning line, trainer David Jacobson’s entry of Salutos Amigos and Strapping Groom will be the starting highweights in the six-furlong dash, carrying 133 and 134 pounds, respectively.

Salutos Amigos, a 4-gelded year-old son of Salute the Sarge, enters the Fall Highweight… Read the rest of this entry >>

California Chrome: Tuesday Jog Turns Into a Gallop

California Chrome working on the turf at Del Mar Sunday

California Chrome working on the turf at Del Mar Sunday

By Jim Charvat

During our conversation with trainer Art Sherman (A Chat With California Chrome trainer Art Sherman ) he says California Chrome is usually laid back in the mornings compared to the afternoons. Tuesday that was not the case.

Sherman brought his Kentucky Derby winner out for a little jog on the polytrack at Del Mar but the colt was so feisty and full of himself, Sherman instructed exercise rider, Willie Delgado, to open him up a bit… Read the rest of this entry >>

Forest Boyce Moves Her Tack to Fairgrounds Per Napravnik’s Advice

Forest Boyce is heeding the advice of retired jockey, Rosie Napravnik

is heeding the advice of retired jockey, Rosie Napravnik

Forest Boyce, who has won nearly 350 races in Maryland during the last five years, will be moving her tack to Fair Grounds for the winter after receiving a call from recently retired rider Rosie Napravnik, who sat atop the jockey standings at the New Orleans track the last three years.

“It was really last minute. Rosie called, we discussed it and I decided to take the chance,” Boyce said. “I don’t even have a place to stay yet. They race five days a week in January and February, while we are going to be running three days at best and we are expecting another brutal winter like last year.”

The Fair Grounds meet runs through March 29, 2015.

“It is time to try something new and get out of my comfort zone,” added Boyce, who has ridden 346 of her 488 career winners (71%) at the major Maryland tracks. “It works out perfectly for me to be back for the start of the Pimlico meet (April 2).”

The 30-year old has teamed up with Eighttofasttocatch for five stakes victories, including the last two runnings… Read the rest of this entry >>

Fabulous Strike Stakes, Penn Nat’l’s Wednesday Card Postponed

Penn Nat'l has decided to postpone its Wednesday card until Saturday due to a forecasted snow storm.

Penn Nat’l has decided to postpone its Wednesday card until Saturday due to a forecasted snow storm.

The Wednesday night card at Penn National that included three stakes races, including the $200,000 Fabulous Strike Stakes, has been postponed until Saturday because of a winter storm that’s expected to drop up to 8-inches of snow on the track Wednesday.

Ben’s Cat was the headliner in the Fabulous Strike. He’s attempting to defend his title for the second straight year. Four other horses entered in the Fabulous Strike are also cross-entered in Thursday’s G3 Fall Highweight at Aqueduct. They are Tightend Touchdown, who last ran in the Breeders’ Cup, River Rocks, Strapping Groom, and Weekend Hideaway.

Penn National officials announced the postponement after a meeting this morning to discuss the weather forecast. 4-to-8 inches of snow are expected in Western Pennsylvania.

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A Chat With California Chrome Trainer Art Sherman

Art Sherman addressing the media after California Chrome's work on Sunday

Art Sherman addressing the media after California Chrome’s work on Sunday

Recently sdhorserace.com had the pleasure to sit down with trainer Art Sherman and a couple of the Del Mar beat writers to talk about California Chrome and the challenges that come with training such a high profile horse.

Everything that has been written about Art Sherman is true, his amiable personality and the fact that he makes himself so accessible to everyone. Art appeared honestly surprised at the turnout for his colt’s work on the grass last Sunday at Del Mar and the media attention he got afterward.

He’s a man who has been in this business for a long time and is confident in his work and being around people that adore him and his horse.

We want to thank Ed Zieralski and Jay Privman for letting us sit in on their conversation, one we think you’ll enjoy as much as we did.

Just push play…

The whole gang after the Santa Anita Derby

Sherman and Victor Espinoza  after the Santa Anita Derby

Art had his game face on prior to 'Chrome's' work Sunday.

Art had his game face on prior to ‘Chrome’s’ work Sunday.

Art Sherman addressing the masses at Churchill Downs

Art Sherman addressing the masses at Churchill Downs

Clydesdales Given the Holidays Off By Budweiser

The Clydesdale have been cut from Budweiser's holiday ad campaign this year

The Clydesdale have been cut from Budweiser’s holiday ad campaign this year

The Clydesdales will be missed. Who hasn’t felt a lump in their throat or got a tad bit misty-eyed watching one of their commercials. In fact, they’re one of the few commercials people will actually rewind to watch again, or stop fast-forwarding to view.

But apparently the younger viewers are not into the Clydesdales, according to whoever advises Budweiser on these matters, so the beer company has decided not to use the majestic horses with the white feathery legs in their commercials this holiday season. The Clydesdales will be used in a few ‘responsible drinking’ ads but not in the snow falling, tug-at-your-heart type videos many people, young and old, have come to enjoy over the years.

Read the rest of this entry >>

Stable Fire Kills 32 Horses Outside Chicago

Investigators continue to comb through the debris looking for clues to the cause of a fire at a stable in Woodstock, Illinois, 50 miles outside Chicago Sunday. 32 horses were killed in the fire and the well-known riding stable was destroyed. Valley View Acres provided horsesback riding and lessons, and trained thoroughbreds and show horses.

The fire broke out just before midnight Saturday, stable owner, Amber Bauman’s son heard the crackling of the fire and saw the barn engulfed in flames and smoke. It took the help of 27 different fire departments to put out the fire. Five horses in the stable at the time managed to get out.

Watch: nbc5 Chicago’s coverage of the devastating fire

As remaining firefighters sprayed water on hot spots Sunday, friends and relatives laid flowers at the site and provided emotional support for the owners of the stable and the people who lost their horses.

 

California Chrome: Works On Turf At Del Mar, Likely For Hollywood Derby

California Chrome breezes four furlongs in :52

California Chrome breezes four furlongs in :52

By Jim Charvat

Art Sherman hedged, just a little bit, saying he wants to put one more “breeze down the stretch” into California Chrome, but that he’s excited about running him in next Saturday’s Hollywood Derby and that he will go ahead and enter his colt in the Grade 1 race Wednesday.

Watch: California Chrome at Del Mar

With a few hundred spectators and his trainer, Art Sherman looking on, California Chrome stepped on the turf course at Del Mar like he was… Read the rest of this entry >>

A Winning Performance By Big Macher in Cary Grant Stakes at Del Mar

Big Macher and jockey Rafael Bejarano, hold off Rousing Sermon and Elvis Trujillo to win the Cary Grant Stakes Sunday at the Del Mar. ©BENOIT PHOTO

Big Macher and jockey Rafael Bejarano, hold off Rousing Sermon and Elvis Trujillo to win the Cary Grant Stakes Sunday at the Del Mar. ©BENOIT PHOTO

Displaying the gameness that he has become known for, Big Macher, the 7-5 favorite ridden by Rafael Bejarano, fought off the two-pronged attack of longshot Rousing Sermon and previously unbeaten Red Outlaw to win  the featured $100,000 Cary Grant Stakes Sunday at Del Mar.

Big Macher, victor in the Grade I Bing Crosby Stakes last summer at Del Mar, dueled with 16-1 longshot Rousing Sermon from the start of the seven-furlong sprint, responded in the stretch when Red Outlaw joined the battle from the outside and then prevailed by a neck in the final yards over a tenacious Rousing Sermon.

Red Outlaw, the 3-2 second choice after winning six races in a row, faltered in the late… Read the rest of this entry >>