Tag Archives: Horse Racing

New York Racing Association’s fall schedule to include two ‘Super’ Saturdays


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo by Adam Coglianese

As the New York Racing Association (NYRA) spring season wraps up on July 19, the 38-day fall championship meet at Belmont Park is set to deliver two “Super” Saturdays, with 11 graded stakes worth $4.2 million on Sept. 26 and Oct. 3.

In all, 40 stakes worth $10.6 million will be offered during the meet, which runs from Sept. 11 through Nov. 1.

On Sept. 26, two “win and you’re in” races will be held: a Grade 1, $600,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic in the Turf division, and the Grade 1, $400,000 Vosburgh in the Sprint division. The winners of those races gain entrance into the Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships to be held at Keeneland Race Course on Oct. 30-31.

Also on the card for the Sept. 26 races are the Grade 1, $400,000 Beldame for fillies and mares, the Grade 2 Gallant Bloom Handicap for filly and mare sprinters and the Grade 3, $200,000 Pilgrim for juveniles on the turf.

The lead up to the Breeders’ Cup will continue on Oct. 3, with the Grade 1, $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup which offers automatic entry and a fees-paid trip to the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic.

The Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series races conclude with the Grade 1, $500,000 Flower Bowl Invitational (Filly & Mare Turf), the Grade 1, $500,000 Foxwoods Champagne (Juvenile), and the Grade 1, $400,000 Frizette (Juvenile Fillies). The Grade 2, $400,000 Kelso Handicap and the Grade 3, $500,000 Hill Prince for 3-year-olds on the turf complete the graded stakes on the card.

“With the Breeders’ Cup scheduled at the end of October, it afforded us the opportunity to present two blockbuster days of racing instead of one,” said Martin Panza, senior vice president of racing operations for the NYRA. “We anticipate both to be ‘must-see’ days at Belmont Park this fall.”

Racing fans can watch all the Breeders’ Cup action at Belmont Park and the simulcast center at Aqueduct Racetrack on Oct. 30 and 31, with live racing action at Belmont to include the Grade 3, $200,000 Turnback the Alarm for fillies and mares on the turf on Friday and the Grade 3, $200,000 Bold Ruler at seven furlongs on Saturday.

The meet will then conclude with the $100,000 Pumpkin Pie for filly and mare sprinters on Nov. 1.

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American Pharoah goes for the Triple Crown at Belmont Park tomorrow


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy New York Racing Association/Adam Coglianese

Having won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, American Pharoah already proved himself a champion thoroughbred; the only question left is whether he is a racing legend.

It will be answered tomorrow at Belmont Park, when American Pharoah goes to the post in the Belmont Stakes as the 14th horse since 1979 with a chance to sweep all three legs of the Triple Crown.

American Pharoah comes to Belmont on a six-race winning streak and off a Preakness win in which he went wire-to-wire amid a torrential rainstorm. Standing between him and the Triple Crown is a trip around the daunting 12-furlong circuit of Belmont’s main track and seven challengers, each of whom did not race in both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

Pharoah’s jockey and trainer have been in this spot before: Victor Espinoza and Bob Baffert brought War Emblem to Belmont in 2012 with a chance at a Triple Crown, only to see the colt stumble badly out of the gate and finish eighth. Last year, Espinoza rode California Chrome to a Triple Crown bid, but the colt finished fourth in the Belmont. Baffert came up short in two previous Triple Crown chances with Silver Charm in 1997 and Real Quiet in 1998 — the latter of which lost the Belmont by a nose.

As with any Triple Crown berth, a huge crowd is expected at Belmont Park on June 6. The New York Racing Association (NYRA) capped the maximum attendance at 90,000; last year’s Belmont Stakes drew over 100,000 but the cap aims to make patrons more comfortable and reduce overcrowding issues.

No general admission tickets will be sold at the gate tomorrow; all tickets must be purchased in advance online.

Last year’s event also ended on a sour note off-track due to problems with departing trains at the Belmont Park Long Island Rail Road station that left some patrons waiting hours after the final race to leave. The LIRR and NYRA spent $5 million to build two new concrete platforms and make other improvements to the station to better accommodate the thousands expected to travel to and from Belmont by rail Saturday.

Additionally, the NYRA scheduled a post-race Goo Goo Dolls concert to ease the crowd’s departure and reduce train and road congestion.

The $1.5 million Belmont Stakes highlights a championship 13-race card that includes nine other stakes races including the $1.25 million Metropolitan Mile for older horses, the $1 million Manhattan Stakes for older turf horses and the $1 million Ogden Phipps Handicap for older fillies and mares. The first post is 11:30 a.m.; the Belmont Stakes will go off at 6:52 p.m.

The Belmont Stakes field. Graphic courtesy NYRA.com

The Belmont Stakes field. (Graphic courtesy NYRA.com)

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I’ll Have Another scratched from Belmont Stakes


| brennison@queenscourier.com

belmont

He won’t have another.

I’ll Have Another will be scratched from tomorrow’s running of the Belmont Stakes, the horse’s trainer Doug O’Neill announced on “The Dan Patrick Show.”

The Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner was running to become just the 12th horse ever and the first since 1978 to win horse racing’s Triple Crown.

The heavy favorite was forced out of the 1 1/2 race because of an injured left front tendon.

Attendance at potential Triple Crown runs generally surpassed 100,000 people — about double the average crowd.  Belmont was expected to approach six figures in attendance before the news of I’ll Have Another’s injury.

 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Police Bust 14 In Queens, Brooklyn Auto Theft Ring

If you own a specific type of luxury SUV, you could have been the target of a sophisticated car theft ring. The New York City Police Department and Attorney General’s office announced the arrest of 14 people Wednesday in a sting they’re calling Operation EZ Steal. Read more: [NY1]

 

A Whitestone tradition in danger of disappearing 

 

A Memorial Day tradition in Whitestone is in danger of disappearing. The Whitestone Veterans Memorial Day Parade has hit tough times, with organizers barely able to fund this year’s event. Some residents are worried it may become the last. Read more: [New York Daily News]

 

Board Threatens To Disband NYRA Amid Pay Out Scandal

 

State regulators are threatening to replace the New York Racing Association amid allegations the entity cheated bettors out of millions of dollars. The state’s Racing and Wagering Board is blasting the agency for holding back $8.5 million in winnings and is now considering reorganizing all of NYRA which operates the tracks at Aqueduct, Belmont and Saratoga. Read more: [NY1]

 

JFK Airport Cargo Worker Accused Of Stealing From Care Packages Meant For Troops Overseas

 

A cargo worker at John F. Kennedy Airport is accused of stealing from care packages meant for U.S. troops serving overseas. Investigators said the theft was discovered when the suspect was caught wearing one of the stolen items. Read more: [1010WINS]

 

Like they never Met

Guess he’s still more of a Wally the Green Monster kinda guy. Mayor Bloomberg seemed to give Mr. Met the cold shoulder at City Hall yesterday as he announced that next year’s MLB All-Star Game will be played at Citi Field. Read more: [New York Post]

 

Queens College students plant one of the city’s biggest apple orchards on campus

 

Where most Queens College students saw an empty field, senior Grace Magee imagined a place where an undergrad could pluck a low-hanging piece of fruit on her way to class. She suggested to school administrators last month that the campus partner with an initiative that plants Newtown Pippin and other apple tree types in New York’s public spaces. Read more: [New York Daily News]