NEWS AND NOTES FOR OCTOBER 24, 2014
EXPECT ROYALTY, MAGNA BREEZE WIN TEXAS-BRED STAKES AT RETAMA PARK
Last Saturday, Retama Park presented a pair of Texas-bred turf stakes with the $50,000 Fiesta Mile and $50,000 Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame Stakes.
In the Fiesta Mile, Expect Royalty closed well to win by a length for trainer, owner and breeder Leroy Pollok. This was the first stakes win and fifth career victory for the 4-year-old daughter of Valid Expectations. She clocked the one-mile distance in 1:36.23.
Donald Milligan’s Delmersmiracle, a daughter of Special Rate making her stakes debut, set the early pace and held on for second. Rose Mary Chandler’s homebred I Am Jane Dough, a filly by My Golden Song also making her stakes debut, closed to finish third.
In the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame Stakes, William Butler’s Magna Breeze shipped in from Indiana Grand to win by a neck for trainer Mike Maker. Bred by Joanne Schapiro, the well-traveled Magna Graduate gelding has raced at Sam Houston Race Park, Lone Star Park, Churchill Downs, Belmont Park and Indiana Grand this year. All told, the Texas-bred has banked $112,324 with a record of 16-6-5-2. He clocked 1 1/16 miles at Retama in 1:41.60.
David Moad’s Early Flyer gelding Fly the Red Eye closed fast to take second, and Southwestern Racing LLC’s Special U F O, a son of Special Rate who won this race last year, held on for third after setting the pace.
TEXAS STALLION SCRIMSHAW TO STAND AT KEEN FARMS
Graded stakes winner and graded stakes sire Scrimshaw has been relocated to Dallas and Donna Keen’s Keen Farms in Burleson, Texas, for the 2015 breeding season. He will stand for a $1,500 fee as property of Shirley Browne. Scrimshaw formerly stood at Double S Thoroughbreds in Poynor, Texas.
Undefeated as a 2-year-old, Scrimshaw became a leading contender on the Triple Crown trail with a three-length victory in the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (G2) at Keeneland. The son of Gulch went on to run in the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes, and the D.Wayne Lukas-trained runner closed to finish third in the Preakness.
A top 10 Texas stallion, Scrimshaw has sired eight stakes horses, including Grade 3 winner Mr. Rod, Group 3 winner Uomo in Frac and five-time stakes winner Nomorewineforeddie, with total progeny earnings of more than $4.5 million.
MR. BESILU TO EUREKA THOROUGHBRED FARM
Mr. Besilu, the son of A.P. Indy who sold for $4.2 million as a Keeneland yearling, has been retired from racing and will stand the 2015 breeding season at Mike Grossman’s Eureka Thoroughbred Farm in Fredericksburg, Texas. He will stand for a fee of $2,000.
Mr. Besilu made headlines in 2010 when he sold for the highest price of any North American yearling since 2006 and the highest ever for an offspring of leading stallion A.P. Indy.
Mr. Besilu’s dam is three-time Grade 1 winner Balance, a millionaire by Thunder Gulch. Balance is also a half sister to three-time Eclipse Champion Older Mare and 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta.
TTA ONLINE AUCTION OF 2015 STALLION SEASONS
Thanks to the generosity of stallion owners across the region, you have the opportunity to purchase a 2015 breeding season at a special price through the TTA’s online auction. Stallion breedings include A.P. Million, Commitment, Crossbow, Early Flyer, Expect a Lot, Grasshopper, Jet Phone, Moro Tap, My Golden Song, Orderly, Power Storm, Silver City, Sing Baby Sing, Storm Broker, Supah Blitz, The Hunk, and Too Much Bling. The first round of internet biddling closes at 5pm Central on Monday, November 3rd. To place your bid, go to:
SPECIAL DINING OPTION AT RETAMA PARK FOR BREEDERS’ CUP
Retama Park has announced that the 4th floor Lone Star Room/1836 Club will be open to the public for dining on Saturday, November 1, day 2 of the Breeders’ Cup. Gourmet appetizers will be served from 12 noon until 2 p.m., and the entree will be served from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. The cost is $24.95 per person. Call 210-651-7000 for reservations. The menu may be viewed at: http://www.retamapark.com/Sat%20Nov%201%20Menu.pdf.
KEENELAND AND THE RED MILE TO PARTNER ON HISTORICAL RACING MACHINES
Keeneland and The Red Mile, a Lexington harness track, have officially agreed to consolidate historical racing machines in one facility that will be built at The Red Mile.
The announcement was made October 22. Earlier talks were geared toward having one Lexington facility for wagering on historical racing, but Keeneland later announced it would build its own facility. That was before Keeneland learned it would host the 2015 Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
Red Mile officials said plans call for 1,000 Instant Racing terminals in an upscale area that will be connected to the existing grandstand, which will be renovated for live racing and simulcast purposes. The projected opening is September 2015.
“This is an exciting announcement for ‘The Horse Capital of the World’ and the ongoing growth of Lexington,” Red Mile chief executive officer Joe Costa said in a release. “By making this pari-mutuel wager available in Fayette County, our state’s signature industry can enjoy the financial benefits of a crucial new revenue stream, not just for owners and breeders but the entire horse industry.”
Keeneland chief operating officer Vince Gabbert said consolidation of Instant Racing in the Lexington market was the better option.
“There have always been two driving considerations behind decisions made by Keeneland,” Gabbert said. “And that is the health of the Thoroughbred industry and our local community. We believe the best course of action for both our key constituencies is a facility at The Red Mile. Our belief is that the benefits of a more centrally located and fully-dedicated facility outweighs locating this wagering option on our property.”
The Red Mile is located downtown between Broadway and Versailles Road.
The partners didn’t reveal a breakdown of financial contribution for construction, but the project overall will cost about $30 million. They said revenue from Instant Racing will be split between them to support live racing, particularly purses.
Kentucky Downs and Ellis Park have Instant Racing machines. Keeneland and The Red Mile last year indicated they planned to move forward even though the Instant Racing issue remains tied up in court. The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission earlier passed regulations authorizing historical race wagering because it considers it to be pari-mutuel.
REPORT OF MARES BRED SHOWS MODEST INCREASE
Led by increases in five major states, the number of mares bred in North America this year increased 1.1% while the number of stallions declined 8.9%, according to the Report of Mares Bred released by The Jockey Club Oct. 21.
Based on RMBs received through Oct. 13, 2014, The Jockey Club reports that 1,547 stallions covered 34,540 mares in North America during 2014. The annual statistics represent approximately 92% of the mares that eventually will be reported as bred in 2014. According to historical trends, The Jockey Club expects to receive RMBs representing an additional 2,000 to 3,000 mares bred during the 2014 breeding season.
The number of stallions declined 8.9% from the 1,698 reported at this time in 2013, and the number of mares bred increased 1.1% from the 34,174 reported at this time last year.
In Kentucky, which traditionally leads North America in Thoroughbred breeding activity, the number of mares bred to Kentucky stallions increased 7.2% compared with last year.
The largest increase of 16.1% came in Maryland, while Florida, California, and New York were also among the top 10 breeding states in which stallions covered more mares in 2014 than in 2013, as reported at this time last year.
Ranked as #10, Texas statistics indicate 88 stallions for 2014, a decline of 16.2% from the 105 reported for 2013, with 735 mares bred this year, a 15% decline from the 865 reported for 2013.
NOTES: Best of luck to Accredited Texas-bred 3-year-old filly Thegirlinthatsong (My Golden Song – Belle of the Band) who is entered in Saturday’s $100,000 Autumn Miss Stakes at Santa Anita, going 1 mile on the turf..She breaks from post position 1 at odds of 8-1… Based on wins through October 19 at Retama Park, David Cabrera is the leading jockey with 28 wins, trainers Allen Milligan and Danny Pish tied with 11 wins each, and Terry Eoff is leading owner with 5 wins…Our condolences to the family of Nelson Bunker Hunt, who passed away this week. Hunt was honored by the TTA with the T. I. “Pops” Harkins Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2003…Congratulations to the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame for a very successful Hall of Fame Gala last Saturday! The décor was beautiful, the dinner buffet was delicious, the auction items were great, and the entire program was very enjoyable.