Like a giant ice block, a mass of bitter cold rests over the East.
Aqueduct has already cancelled for today (Dec 28, Thursday).
The temperature reads -25 in most parts of southern Ontario with a bit of relief coming in 2 days.
CANADIAN STARS in action at Gulfstream Park on Saturday Dec 30
Hold those Sovereign Award ballots!
A litany of Canadian racehorses are in action in stakes events in Florida on a big card of racing on Saturday.
TIZ A SLAM, a contender for Champion Three-Year-Old Colt in Canada, takes part in the Tropical Park Derby while his stablemate Ghostly Presence, a stakes winning sophomore filly in 2017 is in the Tropical Park Oaks.
Both are trained by Roger Attfield for Chiefswood Stables, which led all owners by money won at Woodbine in 2017.
Mark Dobson’s Sister Nation, trained by Mike DePaulo, is also in the Oaks and she was a
double stakes winner in 2017.
Trainer Josie Carroll sends out turf mare Involuntary in the Via Borghese Stakes.
SOVEREIGN AWARD packages will go to voters in early January.
GET YOUR WINGS – Pegasus World Cup is on Jan. 27
GIANT EXPECTATIONS, who sauntered to an easy win on the pace in the San Antonio Handicap at Santa Anita on Dec. 26 is being bartered around as his interests look for a deal to enter the Pegasus World Cup at a cost of $1 million.
The New York bred by Frost Giant (a a son of Giant’s Causeway), Giant Expectations cycled up to a career top Beyer Figure of 106 in his recent victory.
His last 3 Beyer Figures read 106,94, 81.
There are nine confirmed starters for the 2018 Pegasus World Cup Invitational as of Dec. 15, 2017, are as follows (listed alphabetically):
Collected – 101, 115, 114
Owner: Speedway Stable LLC. | Trainer: Bob Baffert
Hall of Fame trainer Baffert, who saddled Arrogate to victory last year, returns with two starters including Collected, a multiple-graded stakes winner who finished second Nov. 4 at Del Mar in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. The son of City Zip has won eight of 13 starts and is currently training at Santa Anita.
Gunnevera – 109. 104, 86
Owner: William C. Gallo, et al. | Trainer: Antonio Sano
The popular colt won the Fountain of Youth (G2) and was second in the Travers (G1) at Saratoga this summer and finished in a dead-head for fifth in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. He has three victories over Gulfstream Park and is training at Gulfstream Park West.
Gun Runner 117, 115, 112
Owner: Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC/Three Chimneys Farm.| Trainer: Steve Asmussen
Just two days before the running of Pegasus, Gun Runner is favored to be crowned 2017 Horse of the Year at the 47th Eclipse Awards at Gulfstream. Under the care of Hall of Fame horseman Asmussen, Gun Runner won five of six races in 2017, including four consecutive Grade 1 events. He capped off his season with a gate-to-wire victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. The son of Candy Ride is training in New Orleans.
Here is his Dec 24 workout..https://youtu.be/vLNKU1eEFqY
Seeking the Soul 103, 103, 93
Owner: Charles E. Fipke. | Trainer: Dallas Stewart
Bred by Fipke, Seeking the Soul will enter the Pegasus off his biggest win, a half-length victory in the Clark Handicap (G1) at Churchill Downs November 24. The son of Perfect Soul is currently training in New Orleans.
Stellar Wind 80, 103, 101
Owner: Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith (Coolmore). | Trainer: Chad Brown
The lone filly or mare in the Pegasus as of now, Stellar Wind earned an Eclipse Award as champion 3-year-old filly in 2015. She reeled off three consecutive Grade 1 victories earlier this year and is the daughter of two-time Horse of the Year, Curlin. The mare is currently in training at Palm Meadows Training Center in Palm Beach.
Toast of New York – n/a
Owner: Al Shaqab, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, R.A. Hill, Eric Young. | Trainer: James Osborne
Toast of New York returned from a three-year layoff earlier this month to win at Lingfield Park in Surrey, United Kingdom. After finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Classic in 2014, the 6-year-old was retired for stallion duties in Dubai but was returned to training in April. He has finished first or second in seven of his nine career starts. He remains in the U.K.
To Be Announced
Owner: Adena Springs. | Trainer: TBA
Adena Springs is owned by the Stronach Family, the innovators behind the Pegasus World Cup Invitational. Adena Springs bred Shaman Ghost, who finished second in the inaugural running of the Pegasus World Cup Invitational.
War Story/Game Over War Story’s last 3 Beyers – 112/94. 92
Owner: Ron Paolucci and Ashley Quartarolo. | Trainer: Jorge Navarro
The connections are still considering which one of two horses they will have in the Pegasus starting gate. War Story, a graded-stakes winner, would enter off a fourth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. The lightly-raced Game Over was most recently fourth in the Pennsylvania Derby (G1). Both are stabled at Gulfstream Park West.
West Coast 112. 107. 108
Owner: Gary and Mary West. Trainer: Bob Baffert
Winner of the Travers Stakes and third in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, this 3-year-old has won six of nine starts and has never finished worse than third. Currently training at Santa Anita.
For the latest news and updates follow the Pegasus World Cup Invitational on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @pegasusworldcup and at www.pegasusworldcup.com
JACK VAN BERG
One of the world’s most famous horse trainers has passed away. Jack Van Berg, who guided the amazing Alysheba to near-Triple crown glory and 1988 Breeders’ Cup Classic heroics and the quirky Gate Dancer to spectacular Grade 1 wins,
Van Berg had great quotes for the media and won 6,523 races in his training career.
IT’S A DRAG – SANTA ANITA under social media fire
There were some 40,000 on hand at Santa Anita for the opening day card Dec. 26 and some super horses in action on a good card of racing but fans of horseracing were
all over the track on social media post-racing for a number of issues.
Here is one tweet from a fan, small stable owner..
“My dad came with me to bet Santa Anita at the sports book today. Safe to say he wasn’t converted into a horseplayer. Watched nine races in four hours, watched me not
cash one ticket while making two trips to the ATM. “This is fun for you?” cut me more than I’ll ever admit to him.”
So while post time drag continues to plague racing, then the goings-on of the late Pick 4, Pick 5 wagers, plus the strange run by heavily favoured Collected in the
San Antonio Stakes just made racing fans drop their heads to the desk.
Not only did the lackadaisical run by the 1 to 5 Collected make people go ‘hmmm’ but then the ‘will plays on the final races of the day are now under investigation..
From the Blood-Horse:
The Stronach Group’s chief operating officer, Tim Ritvo, said Dec. 26 that the track owner will look into what appear to be irregular “will-pays” from the last race
on Santa Anita Park’s opening-day card.
Spanish Hombre, the 5-2 favorite, won the final race and paid $1,306.85 in the Pick 5 and $128.55 in the Pick 4 based on the 50-cent base wager.