News and Notes for April 27, 2018

2017 Texas Champion 3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Durocher (Niagara Causeway – Trench Cat) is in a field of 8 for Saturday’s $75,000 Miesque’s Approval Stakes for 3-year-olds and up going a mile and a sixteenth on the turf at Gulfstream Park.

Bred by La Bahia Stud, the colt now races for Sterling Racing LLC, John Herzberg, and Michelle Allan.

Durocher won the Tropical Park Derby in December, then finished poorly in his last out in the Gr. 3 W. L. McKnight Handicap on January 27th.  He has a career record of 14-5-0-4 with $137,173 in earnings. The morning line has him at 9/2.

Late nominations limited to 2018 Texas 2-Year-Old Sale Graduates (that were not previously nominated) will be accepted by payment of $5,000 due by May 1.  That payment must be fax, credit card or postmarked no later than May 1st.

Each division of the Futurity carries an estimated purse of $100,000 and will be run at Lone Star Park on July 15th.

Craig Upham’s homebred Patrona Margarita, a Texas-bred daughter of Oklahoma stallion Special Rate, recorded a half-mile breeze in :48.80 last Sunday morning at Churchill Downs in preparation for a start in the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI) on Friday, May 4.

The Texas-bred breezed through eighth-mile splits of :12.60, :24.60 and :36.80 before galloping out five furlongs in 1:02 and six furlongs in 1:15.60, according to Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols.

“She’s been doing very well,” trainer Bret Calhoun said. “She had a couple of rough months at Fair Grounds with some fungus on her leg that we had to treat with antibiotics and give her some time off. I think now she’s just really getting turned around from the antibiotics. She wasn’t close to top shape in the Ashland but is doing really well now.”

Patrona Margarita kicked off the Road to the Kentucky Oaks with a 3 ¾-length upset victory in the Sept. 17 Pocahontas (G2) at Churchill Downs. The filly returned as a 3-year-old with a fourth-place effort in the Feb. 17 Rachel Alexandra (G2) at Fair Grounds prior to her third in the April 7 Ashland (G1) at Keeneland.

Patrona Margarita joins Kentucky Oaks contender and stablemate, Classy Act, in Calhoun’s Barn 23 at Churchill Downs.

Patrona Margarita, who finished third in last year’s Texas Thoroughbred Futurity at Lone Star Park, is a half sister to two-time Texas Horse of the Year and millionaire Texas Chrome.

NOTES: Consignment contracts for the August 27 Texas Summer Yearling and Mixed Sale were mailed out this week.  Contracts are also available at…Save the date of June 23rd for the TTA Annual Meeting and Awards Luncheon at Lone Star Park.  Invitations will be mailing soon…An interesting history of breeze shows is available at…Nice article in Daily Racing Form about Texas’ Lane Richardson with Richardson Bloodstock.