Keeneland Barn Notes for Wednesday, Oct. 9

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  • CONCISE LOOKS FOR BREAKTHROUGH WIN IN SATURDAY’S QE II CHALLENGE CUP
  • FIRST EXTENDED STAY IN KENTUCKY PAYS OFF FOR CHANNING HILL
  • LEXTRAN TO OFFER SHUTTLE TO KENTUCKY FOOTBALL GAME
  • FALL MEET SPECIAL EVENTS
  • FALL MEET LEADERS

 

CONCISE LOOKS FOR BREAKTHROUGH WIN IN SATURDAY’S QE II

Andrew Stone’s Concise (GB) has been knocking on the door of success in her three starts in this country, and her connections are hopeful the door will swing open in Saturday’s 30th running of the $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) for 3-year-old fillies.

“She’s an improving filly,” said Jane Buchanan, racing manager for trainer Graham Motion’s stable. “She breezed Saturday at Fair Hill (Md.) and shipped here after the work.”

A daughter of Lemon Drop Kid out of a Diesis (GB) mare, Concise broke her maiden on an all-weather surface in her second start at Kempton Park in England but has not won since. She joined the Motion barn in early summer and made her U.S. debut at Saratoga with a fast-closing second against allowance company.

“There are more opportunities over here for a filly to earn black type,” Buchanan said.

In her U.S. stakes debut, she finished fourth beaten less than a length in the Woodford Reserve Lake Placid (G2) at Saratoga and in her most recent start was third, beaten 11/2 lengths, in the Garden City (G1).

Edgar Prado, who rode Concise for the first time in the Garden City, will have the mount Saturday. Prado and Motion teamed to win the 2003 QE II with Film Maker.

 

FIRST EXTENDED STAY IN KENTUCKY PAYS OFF FOR CHANNING HILL

Jockey Channing Hill is riding his first full meet at Keeneland this fall, and his decision to come to Central Kentucky already has paid dividends with a victory aboard Poker Player in Sunday’s Bourbon (G3).

“This was something I had always wanted to do,” said Hill, a 26-year-old native of Grand Island, Neb. “I had shipped in a few times and one spring (2009) I rode a horse for Roger Attfield (Society’s Chairman) that beat Parading in an allowance race that should have been a Grade 2.”

Hill rode his first race at Columbus, Neb., when he was 16 and then went to Prairie Meadows in 2004.

“In January 2005 after I graduated from high school, I went to New York,” Hill said of a circuit that for the most part has been his home base since. “Once you are in New York, you never really get to leave, but I went to Chicago last year and that opened up more opportunities.”

Hill won 18 races last summer at Arlington Park and this year won 47 to finish sixth in the rider standings. Many of the horses he won on were trained by Wayne Catalano, who also trains Poker Player.

“Wayne asked me to go down to Kentucky Downs and he was just on fire down there,” Hill said of Catalano, who followed his leading trainer title at Arlington Park with the crown at Kentucky Downs. “People told me that I sure must like riding at Kentucky Downs, and I told them that it was the horses that I liked being on. You get a lot of notice with four-win days.”

After the Keeneland meet, Hill plans to return to New York for the winter but not before a quick trip to California and this year’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Santa Anita with Poker Player.

“I never have ridden in the Breeders’ Cup,” Hill said. “I spent three months at Santa Anita early in my career and made some great contacts. I met (trainer) Patrick Biancone and a few years later when I rode at Monmouth he had some real nice horses there that I got on.”

Hill has one other big event coming up thanks to another connection he made in Chicago. He is engaged to Catalano’s daughter, Shelbi, with a wedding expected in June or July.

“I met Shelbi last year at Arlington Park and she really turned my life around,” Hill said.

So who is most responsible for making inroads into the Catalano barn, the rider or the daughter?

“Shelbi has given me a big leg up,” Hill said with a laugh. “I feel like I should give her 25 percent. She’s the best agent I’ve ever had.”

 

LEXTRAN TO OFFER SHUTTLE TO KENTUCKY FOOTBALL GAME

The Keeneland-Kentucky football “double” is on tap Saturday with Keeneland’s first race at 1:05 p.m. and Kentucky’s home game against Alabama set for a 7 p.m. kickoff. In an effort to make it easier for football fans to attend Keeneland’s races, LexTran will run a shuttle between Keeneland and Commonwealth Stadium throughout the day.

Fans can park at Commonwealth Stadium early in the day, take the LexTran buses to Keeneland and return to campus in time for kickoff. The shuttle begins running at 11:30 a.m., with the final return shuttle from Keeneland to Commonwealth Stadium leaving at 6:45 p.m. The cost is $1 each way. More information can be found at LexTran.com.

GALLOPING OUT

Scheduled to be at Keeneland on Friday are professional team ropers Chad Masters and Charly Crawford. Masters is a two-time world champion header. Crawford is a six-time qualifier to the National Finals Rodeo. On Oct. 18-20, they will offer a roping clinic at Allday Farm in Shelbyville, Ky. Both will compete during the NFR in Las Vegas in December.

 

FALL MEET SPECIAL EVENTS

Thursday, Oct. 10

Make-A-Wish Day. Local Thoroughbred farms have teamed with Keeneland to grant wishes for nine deserving children. Fans are invited to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation and cheer on these children as they present the trophies for all nine races. The children and their families will be treated to a VIP day at the races. Participating farms and organizations are Ashford Stud, Darley, Gainesway, The Frizzy Foundation, Lane’s End Farm, Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital, Shadwell Farm, Stonestreet Farm and Three Chimneys Farm.

Friday, Oct. 11

See Blue Day.Kick off the University of Kentucky’s home football weekend versus two-time defending national champion University of Alabama by tailgating on The Hill for Friday’s racing action. The Hill will have dedicated fan zones for Kentucky and Alabama fans, appearances by theUK cheerleaders, live music and a handicapping challenge between Tom Leach and Alabama radio announcer Eli Gold. Proceeds will benefit Kentucky’s DanceBlue and the University of Alabama Dance Marathon.

The Keeneland Gift Shop Presents a trunk show with Southern Proper and State Traditions from 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

Buffalo Trace Giveaway. Enter to win the ultimate Buffalo Trace experience, including a behind-the-scenes look at America’s oldest continually operated distillery, which is located in Frankfort, Ky., a private whiskey tasting and more. The first 1,500 patrons to register receive a free Buffalo Trace drawstring bag. Registration table is located near Elevator C.

Friday Pick 4 Presented by TVG. A $200,000-guaranteed pool will be offered on the last four races of the day.

Craft Beer Tent. A craft beer tent in the North Terrace will feature popular local craft beers.

Saturday, Oct. 12

Sunrise Trackside. Fans can experience the sights and sounds of Keeneland before the gates open for the race day. It’s a morning filled with fun for family or out-of-town guests featuring:

Breakfast With the Works – Sponsored by Dunkin Donuts and WLEX-18. Watch the horses during their morning workouts while enjoying breakfast in the trackside Equestrian Room from
7-8:30 a.m. Breakfast is $7; children under three eat free.

Children’s Activities – Join us in the Kids Club Corner, adjacent to the Equestrian Room, from
7-9 a.m. for free children’s activities, including photos in colorful jockey silks and face painting. Sign up for Keeneland Kids Club and meet the Kids Club mascot, Buckles.

Tours – Race fans can take a free tour of Keeneland’s grounds from 8:30-10:30 a.m. Tours will begin at the Welcome Center in the paddock.

Paddock Demonstration – A demonstration by Old Friends, a non-profit facility for retired Thoroughbreds in Georgetown, Ky., will be featured in the paddock at 8:45 a.m.

Handicapping Seminar – Need a little help making your picks for the day? Keeneland offers a free trackside handicapping seminar at 11:30 a.m.

Jockey Q&A – Ever wonder what it feels like to ride a Thoroughbred? Fans can submit questions to Rosie Napravnik during a Q&A session at 12:05 p.m. in the walking ring.

Jockey Autograph Book – Patrons may purchase a full-color jockey autograph book featuring riders from Keeneland’s legendary jockey colony. The books are $5; proceeds benefit the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund.

Tailgating on The Hill. Located adjacent to the Keene Barn and Entertainment Center, The Hill will feature a variety of food trucks, a jumbo television screen featuring Keeneland racing and SEC college football, live Bluegrass music on Saturdays, the Keeneland Gift Shop, wireless wagering and wagering terminals, and race-day programs and general admission tickets available for purchase. A complimentary shuttle will take fans to the grandstand. BETologists will be on hand to assist fans.

The Keeneland Gift Shop Presents a trunk show with Southern Proper and State Traditions from 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

Craft Beer Tent. A craft beer tent in the North Terrace will feature popular local craft beer.

 

FALL MEET LEADERS

Through Oct. 6

Jockey

Starts

Wins

2nd

3rd

Purses

John Velazquez

18

4

6

4

$812,768

Rosie Napravnik

15

3

2

2

$119,393

Robby Albarado

12

2

3

0

$532,387

Garrett Gomez

8

2

1

0

$220,094

Miguel Mena

4

2

1

0

$108,740

Shaun Bridgmohan

18

2

0

4

$164,103

Julien Leparoux

12

2

0

0

$273,269

Mike Smith

3

2

0

0

$344,800

10 riders with one win.

  

Trainer

Starts

Wins

2nd

3rd

Purses

Mark E. Casse

9

3

2

1

$400,460

Todd A. Pletcher

5

3

1

0

$316,771

Wesley A. Ward

6

2

1

1

$159,536

Michael J. Maker

14

2

0

1

$ 42,446

William I. Mott

5

2

0

1

$341,540

Dale L. Romans

8

2

0

0

$491,506

Kellyn Gorder

3

2

0

0

$ 67,445

 13 trainers with one win.

 

SPECIAL: Tom Leach’s video interviews about today’s JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G3),
a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1)

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