News and Notes for February 20, 2015


Weekend festivities kick off on Friday evening with an appearance by the world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales. Presented by Anheuser-Busch and Silver Eagle Distributors, the legendary Clydesdales with lead driver Manny Raber, plus their trusty companion, a 2-year-old Dalmatian named Clyde, will perform live on the track following Friday night’s first horse race with a 7:00 pm post time, weather permitting.

The popular Wiener Dog races at Sam Houston Race Park will take on a new twist on Saturday.  This year, Houston’s fastest Wiener Dogs will have competition from small dogs of other breeds in the first ever Derby Dog Dash. The dogs will compete between live Thoroughbred races, going approximately 30 yards.

In addition to racing events, Sam Houston Race Park will offer $1 Hot Dogs, and offer families a chance to bring their four legged best friend to watch the dog races from our pet friendly Pavilion.

This weekend’s feature race is the $50,000 Sam Houston Sprint Cup.  A contentious field of nine will compete in the six furlong contest on Saturday.

Paul Van Doren’s Rise Up makes his Sam Houston Race Park debut for trainer Tom Amoss. The 4-year-old son of Rockport who won the $1 million Delta Jackpot and the one-mile Woodchopper Stakes at Fair Grounds on December 27, shortens to six furlongs Saturday night. He has earned $925,215 in 16 career starts.

Ghost is Clear, owned and trained by Mike Maker, will break from the far outside post under Sam Houston’s leading rider, Deshawn Parker. The 7-year-old son of Ghostzapper ships to Houston in pursuit of his third consecutive win. He captured the $50,000 Forego over the Turfway Park polytrack on January 17, which was his 12th win from 37 starts.

Multiple-stakes winner Solar Charge (Authenticate – Another Sunlit), returns off his second-place finish in the $50,000 Bucharest Stakes here on February 7. Ernesto Valdez-Jiminez will ride the 8-year-old Accredited Texas-bred, who is the second highest earner in the field with $462,094 to date. Trainer Ellen Williams will send out Solar Charge, who was bred by Carolyn Barnett and is owned by Barnett along with David and Lana Alford.

Johnny Whip, winner of the Silver Goblin Stakes at Remington Park on November 21, drew the rail, with David Cabrera in the irons. Flat Black, who ran fourth in last year’s edition of the stakes, will return for trainer Tim Williams. Only Liquor, Unbridled Giant, Saturday’s Charm and Daybreak Dreamer complete the field.

Live racing on Saturday evening gets underway at 6:10 p.m. (CT). The Sam Houston Sprint Cup runs as the ninth race on the card, which also includes two Arabian stakes, the Grade 2, $30,000 Texas Six-Shooter and Grade 2, $30,000 Texas Yellow Rose.

The undefeated filly Promise Me Silver lived up to her star billing last Saturday night as she won the $75,000 Two Altazano Stakes in effortless fashion.

“It was always our goal to stretch her out, and we liked the way she handled seven furlongs (in the Two Altazano),” said trainer Bret Calhoun. “There are several options in the works: the Honeybee at Oaklawn Park, the Sunland Oaks or maybe even the stakes at Laurel if we can make the proper flight arrangements.”

Calhoun is not sure when Supermason, winner of the $75,000 Jim’s Orbit, will make his next start.  The son of Grasshopper is owned by Brad Grady, and outclassed his five rivals with an impressive front running victory last weekend. Options include the six-furlong Gazebo Stakes at Oaklawn Park or waiting for the Texas-bred stakes at Lone Star Park in May.

Fasig-Tipton Texas has cataloged 121 entries for its 2015 Texas 2-Year-Olds in Training & Horses of Racing Age Sale, to be held Tuesday, March 31, at Lone Star Park. The sale will begin at 12 p.m. CT with the 2-year-olds, followed by the horses of racing age section. The under tack show for the sale will be held on Sunday, March 29, beginning at 11 am.

Once again, the catalog offers national sire appeal as well as significant Southwest-bred value. Offerings include 2-year-olds by top sires Exchange Rate, Flatter, Northern Afleet, and the last crop of Harlan’s Holiday, as well as juveniles from the first crops of Uncle Mo, Haynesfield, Trappe Shot, and Archarcharch. Also included in the catalog are Louisiana-bred offspring by top 10 Louisiana 2-year-old sires Half Ours and Closing Argument, as well as Oklahoma-bred juveniles by top 10 Oklahoma sires Kipling, Mr. Nightlinger, Toccet, Don’t Get Mad, Tactical Cat and first-year sire Euroears. Texas’s long time leader Valid Expectations has four representatives, as do leading stallions Grasshopper, Special Rate, and Too Much Bling.

Supplemental entries for the horses of racing age section will be taken until March 17 and are historically popular with consignors. This new section with its flexible entry format was unveiled successfully in 2013 with the selling of stakes winner Worldventurer for $150,000.

The catalog may now be viewed online and via the equineline sales catalog app. Print catalogs will be mailed by February 20. The supplemental catalog will be available online at a later date with the print edition available only on the sales grounds.

Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA) is holding an educational Ownership Seminar at Lone Star Park on Sunday, March 29. TTA members get a special rate of only $90 for the event!  Register here: .  To get the special rate, please register as a TOBA member.

Category Five, a winning son of Storm Cat, will stand the 2015 breeding season at Weatherford Equine Breeding Center in Weatherford, Texas. He will stand for a fee of $2,500.

Formerly among the leading first-crop sires in California and a leading overall sire in North Dakota, Category Five is out of the stakes-placed Nodouble mare Slinkee. Category Five is the sire of three-time stakes winner Edgerrin, an earner of $460,903, and five-time stakes winner Tuffernell.  He broke his maiden against special weight company at Monmouth Park and scored an allowance win at Delaware Park.

For more information, call (817)594-9100 or email

NOTES: Nice article in the El Paso Times on jockey Casey Lambert:… TVG, HRTV to merge operations, paving the way for more than 5,000 additional races from US tracks to be broadcast over the two networks. Via cable, satellite and telco distribution, TVG is currently available in 36.5 million US homes and HRTV is available in 19.5 million US homes…Best of racing luck to: Judy Peek’s Accredited Texas-bred Lasting Bubbles, running in the $100,000 Spring Fever Stakes on Saturday at Oaklawn and to trainer Steve Asmussen who will send out Clark Brewster’s Bayerd and Leland and Robert Ackerley’s Bold Conquest in Sunday’s $300,000 (gr. III) Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn… Young Texas racehorse owner, Marcus Penn, son of TTA Director Rick Penn, is featured in a story at