Horse Racing News and Notes: April 17, 2019

Let the Games Begin The mount on Arkansas Derby runner-up Bob Baffert’s Improbable stays within the Ortiz family, as older brother Irad takes over for Jose, who elected to stay with Wood Memorial victor Tacitus. The elder Ortiz brother teamed up with Improbable’s ownership (WinStar Farm) to win the Belmont Stakes aboard Creator in 2016.…

Racing News and Notes: April 15, 2019

According to Plan In horse racing, it’s seldom that races run on the track duplicate or even resemble how handicappers and experts envision them playing out on paper prior to the gates opening. Saturday’s Arkansas Derby certainly lived up to its billing as favorites Omaha Beach and Improbable treated fans to a thrilling stretch duel…

Racing News and Notes: April 13, 2019

Big Step Up A star-studded field is expected to go postward in Sunday’s Grade I $750,000 Apple Blossom Stakes at Oaklawn Park. Restricted to fillies four and up, the race features multiple grade I winners Elate and Midnight Bisou, widely regarded as two of the best older fillies in training. However, there’s another horse in…

Rewarding the Little Guy

Trainer Mertkan Kantarmaci netted the most points and the $18,000 top prize for winning the New York Racing Association’s ‘Under 20’s Claiming Challenge’ during the Aqueduct winter meet. A concept launched last April at the Belmont spring/summer meet, the Under 20’s Claiming Challenge was open to trainers with 20 or fewer horses in their barns.…

Baffert at Home in Hot Springs

Trainer Bob Baffert has dominated the Southern California racing scene for the better part of two decades, winning stake race after stake race. However, whenever the veteran conditioner ships out of town, success usually follows. Top assistant Jimmy Barnes has become accustomed to the backside of Arkansas’ Oaklawn Park in recent years as his boss…