BUSY TUESDAY FOR TEAM BROWN
Sean Ryan, Keeneland assistant to New York-based trainer Chad Brown, took on the role of equine flight attendant on a whirlwind Tuesday. Ryan accompanied Balance the Books, winner of Sunday’s Bourbon (G3), on his flight from Blue Grass Airport, which left at 12:45 p.m., for Islip Airport on Long Island. When the plane landed, a van containing Brown’s Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) entrants, Dayatthespa and Samitar (GB), was waiting for a flight to Louisville and Ryan was headed back to Kentucky. The Brown crew then took a van to Keeneland, arriving about 8:45 p.m.
“I’m pretty tired,” said Ryan, whose father is noted bloodstock agent Mike Ryan. “It was a very busy day.”
Dayatthespa enters the QEII off four consecutive victories, including the Appalachian (G3) here in April. After that race, she did not compete for four months, returning with a 1¼-length victory in the Riskaverse at Saratoga on August 31. Brown trains the New York-bred daughter of City Zip for Jerry Frankel, Ronald Frankel, Steve Laymon and Bradley Thoroughbreds.
Samitar, a Group 1 winner in Ireland last year, comes into the QE II off a win in the Garden City (G1) at Belmont on September 15. She finished a head in front of Somali Lemonade, one of her rivals in the QE II, in that race to score her first victory in two starts in North America. The daughter of Rock of Gibralter (IRE) races for Martin Schwartz, who raced Keeneland stakes winners Angara (GB), Asi Siempre, Gorella (FR) and Lady of Venice (FR).
TANNERY COULD GIVE IRISH-BREDS CONSECUTIVE QUEEN ELIZABETH II CHALLENGE CUP SCORES
When Together won last year’s Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1), she became only the second Irish-bred in the 28-year history of the race to triumph, joining Danish in 1994.
The wait for the next Irish-bred winner might not be that long should Tannery step up Saturday and find the winner’s circle after the $400,000 race at 1 1/8 miles on the turf for 3-year-old fillies.
A daughter of Dylan Thomas (IRE), Tannery arrived at Keeneland Tuesday night after a day that began with a trip to New York from Monmouth Park for a flight to Louisville and then a van ride to Lexington.
The QE II will mark the second U.S. start for Tannery, who was purchased privately this summer by Richard Santulli after running her first 10 races in Europe.
“We had watched videos of her races and she was pretty tenacious,” trainer Alan Goldberg said from Monmouth Park. “She would give you all she had.”
A Group 3 winner at the Curragh in July, Tannery arrived in Goldberg’s barn a week before her U.S. debut in the Garden City (G1) at Belmont Park on September 15.
“I don’t think she was crazy about the turf that day,” Goldberg said of the filly’s third-place finish behind QE II rivals Samitar (GB) and Somali Lemonade. “The ground was very hard that day.”
Told of a good chance of showers early Friday, Goldberg said, “That would be great.”
Overseeing Tannery at Keeneland is Sharon Huston, who was aboard the filly for a one-mile gallop over the training track.
“She really liked that track,” Huston said after Tannery returned to Barn 40. “She acts like she has been here all her life.”
Also arriving Tuesday night for the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup was Godolphin Racing’s Better Lucky, trained by Tom Albertrani. Overseeing the filly’s preparations here is assistant Josh Flores, who walked the filly around the shedrow at Barn 23.
Albertrani, who won the 2011 Toyota Blue Grass (G1) with Brilliant Speed, moved Better Lucky to the turf three starts back following a 5¼-length romp in the mud at Belmont Park.
“After she won on the mud, he thought if she ran well on the mud that she might like the grass,” Flores said of the Ghostzapper filly, who won her initial grass start in the Sands Point (G2).
Better Lucky finished second a neck behind QE II rival Centre Court in the Lake George (G2) at Saratoga and then finished fifth in the Lake Placid (G2), beaten only 2¼ lengths.
“She had a wide trip that day and maybe she ran back too quick (three weeks) from the Lake George,” Flores said. “She runs better fresh.” …
Both of trainer Todd Pletcher’s two stakes winners of the meet, In Lingerie (Juddmonte Spinster-G1) and Bridgetown (Woodford presented by Keeneland Select-G3), flew to California on Tuesday for expected starts in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships November 2-3 at Santa Anita. Also going to California was Tara From the Cape, the fourth-place finisher in the opening day Darley Alcibiades (G1).
FALL MEET SPECIAL EVENTS
Keeneland showcases community stars this week, beginning with today’s Make-A-Wish Day, when local Thoroughbred farms team up with Keeneland to grant wishes for nine deserving children... Full-time college students receive free general admission and the chance to win one of ten $1,000 scholarships during the track’s popular College Scholarship Day on Friday... Keeneland salutes one of the community’s popular figures, bugler Bucky Sallee, on Saturday. Follow all the special event news on Twitter at #fallstars.
Friday, October 12
College Scholarship Day. Full-time college students receive free general admission and the chance to win one of ten $1,000 scholarships awarded after each race. Registration will take place in Keeneland’s College Zone in the North Terrace, which features music, free snacks and prize drawings. The first 1,000 students to register for a scholarship receive a Keeneland College Scholarship Day T-shirt courtesy of Kennedy Book Store and a hat from Vineyard Vines.
Buffalo Trace Distillery Sweepstakes. Enter to win a VIP Distillery Experience. The first 1,500 fans who register will receive a Buffalo Trace Distillery drawstring backpack.
Friday Pick 4, presented by TVG. Guaranteed pool of $200,000.
Friday Happy Hour. Live music and simulcast wagering in the Paddock immediately after Keeneland’s final live race at 5:53 p.m. (ET)
Saturday, October 13
Sunrise Trackside at Keeneland. Fans can experience the sights and sounds of Keeneland before the gates open for the race day. The morning filled with fun for family or out-of-town guests features:
· Breakfast with the Works Sponsored by Dunkin Donuts and WLEX 18. Watch the horses during their morning works while enjoying a Southern-style breakfast buffet in the trackside Equestrian Dining Room from 7-8:30 a.m. Breakfast is $7; children 3 and under free.
· Kid’s Club – Join us in the Kid’s Club Corner from 7-9 a.m. for free children’s activities, including photos in jockey silks, face painting and more. Sign up for the Keeneland Kid’s Club and meet Kid’s Club mascot Buckles. Enjoy crafts and exhibits from the Explorium of Lexington in the tent adjacent to Equestrian Room.
· Paddock Demonstration – The Asbury University Police Mount training program will be featured in the Paddock at 8:45 a.m.
· Tours – Pick up a walking tour guide in the Paddock between 9:30-10:30 a.m. to learn more about Keeneland’s historic grounds. Guides will be positioned throughout the property to answer questions.
· Photos with Bucky – Have your picture taken with Keeneland’s legendary bugler, George ‘Bucky’ Sallee in the Paddock from 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
· Handicapping Seminar – Join us trackside at 11:30 a.m. for a free handicapping seminar.
· Jockey Q&A – Learn more about your favorite jockeys at 12:05 p.m. in the Paddock.
2012 KEENELAND FALL MEET LEADERS
(Stats Through Sunday, October 7)
Current Meet Leading Jockeys
Name Sts 1st 2nd 3rd Purses
Julien Leparoux 19 5 3 2 $364,233
Javier Castellano 12 3 1 0 $198,889
Jose Lezcano 9 2 2 1 $814,272
Rajiv Maragh 11 2 1 1 $469,461
John Velazquez 11 2 1 0 $353,628
Shaun Bridgmohan 9 2 0 2 $ 80,083
Corey Lanerie 12 2 0 0 $ 52,967
11 jockeys are tied with 1 win each.
Current Meet Leading Trainers
Name Sts 1st 2nd 3rd Purses
Michael Maker 11 3 1 0 $274,605
Todd Pletcher 19 3 0 0 $514,099
Charles Lopresti 3 2 0 0 $465,767
21 trainers are tied with 1 win each.