Close Hatches Makes 4-Year-Old Debut in Saturday’s Azeri Stakes

March 13, 2014

Idle since her second-place finish to eventual Champion 3-Year-Old Filly Beholder in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) November 1, millionaire and dual Grade 1 winner Close Hatches makes her return to the races in Saturday’s $200,000 Azeri Stakes (G2) against six other talented fillies and mares. The Juddmonte Farms’ color bearer was installed as the 7-5 morning line favorite for the race, which is carded as the eighth of 11 races. Read More

Oaklawn Barn Notes March 13

March 13, 2014

You know it’s getting close to spring in Hot Springs when Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert sends in a talented 3-year-old for one of Oaklawn’s rich prep races and this year he has sent Hoppertunity for Saturday’s $600,000 Rebel Stakes (G2). Baffert will be seeking his fourth Rebel victory after three straight wins between 2010 and 2013 with champion Lookin at Lucky, The Factor and Secret Circle, respectively. Read More

Oaklawn Barn Notes March 12

March 12, 2014

Southwest Stakes (G3) winner Tapiture and runner-up Strong Mandate renew their rivalry Saturday in the $600,000 Rebel Stakes (G2) as each colt looks to solidify their position as a leading Kentucky Derby hopeful. The Rebel, which is slated as the 10th of 11 live races at 6:04 p.m., drew a field of eight for the 1 1/16-mile race, the last local prep before the $1 million Arkansas Derby April 12 and subsequent Triple Crown races. Read More

Oaklawn Barn Notes March 8

March 08, 2014

The last time multiple stakes winners Don’t Tell Sophia and Flashy Amercian met, they finished second and third, respectively, behind Wine Princess in the Graded 2 Fall City Handicap at Churchill Downs last November. Fast forward three and half months, and Don’t Tell Sophia is now riding a two-race win streak having already won the Pippin and Bayakoa Stakes at Oaklawn and Flashy American has been training forwardly for her seasonal debut. Both are slated to meet in next Saturday’s $200,000 Azeri Stakes (G2). Read More

Oaklawn Barn Notes: March 6

March 06, 2014

Ride On Curlin, most recently third in the $300,000 Southwest Stakes (G3) Feb. 17, got warmed up to make his next start in the $600,000 Rebel Stakes (G2) March 15 with a seven-furlong breeze Thursday morning with exercise rider Brian Beccia. The son of 2007 Arkansas Derby winner Curlin covered the distance in 1:26 4/5 over a track rated fast despite morning rains. Read More

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