Royal ascot begins today with the biggest stars in racing..check Google for some ‘live streaming’ options…Woodbine jockeys keeping money at home…


A feature story last week in the TORONTO STAR regarding the out of town riders coming in to ride local horses for big races or to set up shop here permanently, was met with a lot of support. Local riders have been running out of mounts slowly as more and more riders come into Woodbine to  make a career with Canadian bucks. Luis Contreras, from Mexico, is one example of a jockey who came from the US and has completed the necessary paperwork to stay here for this year and ride for anyone.

He leads the riders standings.

But recently, the local jocks have been holding their own and Sunday, how fun was it to see MOONSHINE MULLIN and Emma-Jayne Wilson edge ALPHA BETTOR and JIm McAleney in the $150,000 Victoria Park Stakes?

Considering jocks like Javiar Castellano and Alan Garcia were in town on hotshots like Twinspired and Newsdad etc. it was good to see the locals are still keeping the prizes at home as much as possible.


FRANKEL – today at Ascot..




First race at 9:30 a.m. EST

BRIDGETOWN, owned by Canadian EUGENE MELNYK is in the King’s Stand Stakes today on opening day of the Royal Ascot meeting. Trained by Todd Pletcher, the chestnut son of Speightstown is 12 to 1.

GOLDIKOVA Aanf FRANKEL, unbeaten, also race today as well on a blockbuster opening day card.



Royal Ascot Day One Preview: Goldikova and Frankel to start with a bang

    by Chris Wright, Liverpool Echo

GOLDIKOVA and Frankel can confirm their positions at the head of the mile division by taking day one of Royal Ascot by storm.

Goldikova’s exploits in winning 13 times at Group One level mark her down as one of the all-time greats, while Frankel’s QIPCO 2,000 Guineas success has whetted the appetite for seeing him strutting his stuff again.

The former – a three-time Breeders’ Cup Mile winner – bids for back-to-back successes in the opener, the Queen Anne Stakes (2.30pm).

Freddie Head’s wonderful mare showed she is still the one to beat when landing her 13th Group One success on her seasonal reappearance in the Prix d’Isphan at Longchamp last time.

She is Europe’s top miler and follows a similar path to when beating Richard Hannon‘s Paco Boy at the Royal meeting 12 months ago. Another Hannon star, Canford Cliffs, will give her a real race and is better than Paco Boy, having won the St James’s Palace Stakes last year.

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Redekop Part of the Backbone at Hastings

June 9, 2011

Longtime thoroughbred saviour Peter Redekop thought his latest Hastings Racecourse star Inhisglory had lost for the second time since being shipped in from Louisiana and turned over to trainer Craig MacPherson.

The finish of the $50,000 River Rock Casino Handicap for three-year-olds last Sunday made the stewards inspect the photo of the finish with their magnifying glasses to determine that jockey Richard Hamel had indeed gotten Inhisglory a short nose in front of pacesetter Jump Up and Kissme at the wire.

The winning time for the 6 1/2-furlong sprint was 1:16.11 more than two seconds faster than the next best time of the other races of similar distance.

In his only other Hastings start, the $50,000 Jim Coleman on May 7, Inhisglory started ninth of nine and worked his way up to second, beaten just a couple of lengths by Couldabenthewhiskey.

“I thought he’d lost,” said Redekop, who also has horses at Woodbine, Delaware and in southern California at Hollywood Park. “This is my home base, so I like to race horses here. I buy horses that I hope will do well and if they don’t, I pass them on to someone else and hope they do well for them.”

Shortly after Redekop purchased Inhisglory last December, he won a stakes race at Turfway Park in Kentucky. He didn’t do so well in two starts at The Fairgrounds in Louisiana for trainer Michael Stidham, but seems to like it here just fine despite the soggy spring.

“He’s a real nice horse,” said MacPherson. “He came from dead last in his first start at Hastings on a sloppy track and showed a lot of heart. He showed that same determination in winning the River Rock Casino.

“Now we want to see how he stretches out. He certainly has the temperament to go longer. He doesn’t mind being at the back. He just does what he’s asked.” They’re pointing him at the July 1 Chris Loseth at 1 1/16th miles.

Redekop, Glen Todd and Patrick Kinsella, Swift Thoroughbreds (Horatio Kemeny and Mark Mache), Russell Bennett and Nick and Pauline Felicella are the backbone of the B.C. owners and breeders.

MacPherson knows how that goes. He owns Arkhill, who won the Alberta Derby, and knows how expensive it is if the stable isn’t winning. “He’s the only horse I own, to tell you the truth. It’s safer to be training for other people.”

He has seven Redekop horses in his barn with Inhisglory being the best.

“He has never been tried long,” said Redekop. “I’m just as curious as Craig is to see if he will go long. He obviously likes the track.”


QUEEN’SPLATEKITTEN qorked four furlongs in :48 at Belmont yesterday before his trainer Todd Pletcher headed to England for the week.

The Kitten figures to be one of the favourites for the June 26 Plate.

Trainer DAVID BELL said OJIBWAY SIGNAL (Niigon) will be entered, The handsome colt is “blossoming now and I know he will get the distance”.

MIKE DEPAULO ruled out JOJO’S MOJO but it is likely that PENDER HARBOUR will race after his rally for 4th in the Victoria Park Stakes on Sunday.

SEAWATCH was 5th and his connections – Donver Stable and trainer Josie Carroll – may run him along with stablemate INGLORIOUS.

As reported earlier on THOROUGHBLOG, the Old Forester gelding OKIYAMA is also a Plate possibility.


BOWMAN’S CAUSEWAY – 2nd Plate Trial, best Beyer 85

CHECK YOUR SOUL – Plate Trial winner, 89

CURGONE – winner, 70

ELITE ALEX – winner, 87


HEAD HONCHO – 2 wins, 68

HIPPOLYTUS – 2 wins, 74

INGLORIOUS – Oaks winner, 83

MAPLE LEAF KITTEN – winner, 71


OKIYAMA – winner 68

OJIBWAY SIGNAL – winner, 68

ONE BIG GATOR – winner, 76 (sprint)

PENDER HARBOUR – stakes winner, 74






The pick 4 at Woodbine is now the main focus of the track’s simulcast show with mythical bets being made each day on the 4 race series (first one). There are 2 Pick 4’s on weekends and recently another Pick 4 was added on Fridays.

The Pick 4 continues to offer some huge payouts – the results have been nothing short of wacky the last couple of weeks – Sunday included 80 to 1 winner AMERICAN CASTLE.

A fellow blogger wrote about the Pick 4 takeout (Fort Erie recently reduced its takeout to 14%…


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

It’s Time For Woodbine to Lower Pick 4 Takeout

Over the past year there has been a slow but sure movement to lowered serial takeouts. The list of tracks, for example, who have moved the pick 4 takeout to lower levels has grown leaps and bounds. Tampa Bay Downs, Northfield Park, Balmoral Park, Western Fair and just this week Fort Erie Racetrack have all dropped takeout precipitously on this bet (to name just a few). Right now in harness racing, the industry standard for pick 4 take is 15%, down from 25%, or more.

Several years ago the Meadowlands and Monmouth branded the 15% take on this bet and it has proven to be a staple. Despite falling handles everywhere, the volume on the bet has stayed strong. In harness, the Big M is the stalwart, with pools exceeding $100,000 frequently.

Woodbine went the opposite direction. In the early part of the decade they raised the take on the bet to approximately 25%. At the same time they went to the 20 cent minimum for the wager. Because the

Pick 4 bet has been branded as value, Woodbine has pushed the bet and ridden on the back of that branding. However, a beggar thy neighbor policy seems to have endured. Sure folks are betting the pick 4, but they are getting back less in return, and they are not spending money elsewhere. Overall handle is down this decade.