TUESDAY, OCT. 23

Keeneland’s 17-day Fall Meet resumes Wednesday and concludes Saturday.

Post time for the first race each day is 1:05 p.m. ET.

**********

·         WESLEY WARD REPRESENTED BY EIGHT BREEDERS’ CUP PRE-ENTRANTS

·         WINNING ENVELOPE DOING HER BREEDERS’ CUP WORK AT KEENELAND

·         “SPEC” IS STARTER TO THE STARS AT KEENELAND

·         BREEDERS’ CUP CONTENDERS STABLED AT KEENELAND

·         UPCOMING STAKES PROBABLES

·         FALL MEET SPECIAL EVENTS

·         FALL MEET LEADERS

 

WESLEY WARD REPRESENTED BY EIGHT BREEDERS’ CUP PRE-ENTRANTS

Keeneland-based trainer Wesley Ward said eight horses he trains have been pre-entered in the Nov. 2-3 Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs. All are fillies and mares.

Breeders’ Cup pre-entries will be announced Wednesday at 11:30 a.m..

Ward’s contingent includes six starters in the inaugural $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint at 5½ furlongs Nov. 2: Hat Creek Racing’s Chelsea Cloisters, Steven Michael Bell’s Dragic, Breeze Easy’s Mae Never No (IRE) and Shang Shang Shang, Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey’s Moonlight Romance and Marcus Stables’ Stillwater Cove.

Ward said his other Breeders’ Cup pre-entrants are Happy Like a Fool, who was pre-entered in the TwinSpires Sprint (G1) and the Filly and Mare Sprint (G1) on Nov. 3 for owners Merriebelle Stable, Michael B. Tabor, Derrick Smith and Mrs. John Magnier; and Kent Spellman’s Kirby’s Penny, pre-entered in the Filly and Mare Sprint.

He is excited about participating in the new Breeders’ Cup race.

“It’s a fantastic race,” Ward said. “At this time of year, for the most part, I’m kinda looking to give them a break because there’s really nothing for a 2-year-old turf sprinter. (This race) has opened up a lot of opportunities not only for me but for the Europeans. It should be a really good, exciting race.”

Shang Shang Shang has not raced since June 21 when she won the Norfolk (G2) at Royal Ascot in England. Ward said Shang Shang Shang would have her next work at Churchill.

On Tuesday morning, Moonlight Romance and Stillwater Cove worked in company over a turf course labeled as good. (Click here for a video of the work.)

Working on the outside, Moonlight Romance started a length behind Stillwater Cove with the duo finishing on even terms. Moonlight Romance was timed in :49.80 for the half-mile and Stillwater Cove :50 with a final quarter of :23.20 for both. They galloped out five-eighths in 1:03.

Also working for Ward on the dirt was Kirby’s Penny, who drilled a best-of-six 5 furlongs in :59.20.

 

WINNING ENVELOPE DOING HER BREEDERS’ CUP WORK AT KEENELAND

Lothenbach Stables’ Winning Envelope was pre-entered for the $1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1), according to Neil Pessin, who has been overseeing the 2-year-old’s training here for Chris Block.

“She was a private purchase after she won her first race at Arlington by 6 lengths in August,” Pessin said. “She won in hand and under wraps, and she is a More Than Ready (a successful turf sire). Chris had been watching her a couple of months before she ran.”

Off the maiden win, Winning Envelope was favored in the Arlington-Washington Lassie, which also was run on the all-weather track and finished fifth. In her grass debut, she won going a mile at Churchill Downs by 4¾ lengths on Sept. 29.

“She came here after she won at Churchill,” Pessin said of the filly who has had two half-mile works on the dirt here. “She probably will work again here Saturday and then ship to Churchill Sunday.”

GALLOPING OUT

Trainer Mark Casse said Lexus Raven Run (G2) winner Shamrock Rose was pre-entered for the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1). Owned by Conrad Farms, Shamrock Rose was supplemented to the race.

Casse has five horses pre-entered for the Breeders’ Cup. Those stabled at Keeneland are Strike Silver, winner of the Indian Summer, for the Juvenile Turf Sprint; and War of Will, fourth in the Dixiana Bourbon (G3), for the Juvenile Turf (G1). His other runners will be Wonder Gadot (Distaff-G1) and 2017 Commonwealth (G3) winner Awesome Slew (Dirt Mile-G1).

“SPEC” IS STARTER TO THE STARS AT KEENELAND

Keeneland fans see a lot of Starter Robert Lee “Spec” Alexander, who heads the team that loads Thoroughbreds into the starting gate for the afternoon races and presses a button to open the doors when they are still and focused. In the mornings during training hours, Alexander and his crew school horses in the gate.

Alexander, a lifelong horseman, knows an exceptional Thoroughbred when he sees one.

When a bright chestnut 2-year-old colt arrived at the Keeneland starting gate one summer morning in 2017 for fundamental lessons, Alexander knew the youngster would be a superstar. The colt, sold for $500,000 at Keeneland’s 2016 September Yearling Sale, at the time was with Keeneland-based trainer Rodolphe Brisset. A year later with trainer Bob Baffert, he made headlines as undefeated Triple Crown winner Justify.

“The good ones just stand out from the others,” Alexander said, describing the intangible qualities of superior racehorses.

Like many young horses at Keeneland during the summer, Justify honed the starting gate skills required for racing under Alexander. Lessons begin with a horse and rider walking through the gate before continuing their daily exercise. In subsequent visits to the gate, a horse learns to stand quietly while awaiting a quick getaway.

Most Thoroughbreds master the technique of entering, standing and sprinting out of the starting gate in just a few classes while others need remedial education. Alexander and his crew are patient regardless of each animal’s ability. Thoroughbreds are known to have incredible memories, and Alexander knows they will not forget a bad experience in the starting gate.

“Horses only know what we teach them,” Alexander said, noting that teaching horses good manners is easier than undoing bad manners.

Alexander said he is mindful of the time and money people have invested in racehorses, so he treats each animal as if it were his own. He also capitalizes on his crew’s diversity as knowledgeable horsemen when an equine student needs extra attention.

“I’ve learned over the years that one person will get along with a horse and another person won’t,” he said. “I have really good horsemen on my crew and they work together.”

From Versailles, Kentucky, Alexander began his career in the 1950s as an exercise rider for Claiborne Farm’s yearling division, and he subsequently gravitated to racing. One of his most memorable mounts is champion Ridan, who won Keeneland’s 1962 Blue Grass and was third in the Kentucky Derby.

Alexander began working on the starting gate as an assistant starter in 1961 at Atlantic City Race Course in New Jersey, and he became an assistant starter at Keeneland in the 1970s. He has been Keeneland’s head starter since 1981.

Despite his high-profile position during the races, Alexander said he is most comfortable early in the day where the starting gate is positioned at the 4½-furlong chute on the far side of the Grandstand. This is where seasoned runners perfect their departure skills, where impressionable youngsters progress in their classes and where Alexander is both mentor and pupil.  

“My favorite part of working for Keeneland is developing young horses,” he said. “And every day I learn something new. I have been doing this a long time, but I don’t know everything.”

 

BREEDERS’ CUP CONTENDERS STABLED AT KEENELAND

 

Keeneland is home to several potential contenders for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs on Nov. 2-3.

Pre-entries for the Breeders’ Cup will be announced Wednesday at 11:30 a.m..

Here are the trainers and their possible Breeders’ Cup runners:

Trainer (Barn)

Horse

Breeders’ Cup Race

Last Race (at KEE unless indicated)

Most Recent Work Since Last Race

Rusty Arnold (60)

Concrete Rose

Juvenile Fillies Turf

Won 10/10 JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G2)

 

Richard Baltas (41)

Instant Erma

Turf Sprint

6th in 10/6 First Lady (G1)

10/21: 4f in :51.60

Next Shares

Mile

Won 10/6 Shadwell Turf Mile (G1)

10/21: 5f in 1:04.20

Chris Block (44)

Winning Envelope

Juvenile Fillies Turf

Won 9/29 allowance at CD

10/21: 4f in :48

Chad Brown (27)

Standard Deviation

Juvenile

3rd in 10/6 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1)

10/21: 4f in :48.60

Mark Casse (37)

Shamrock Rose

Filly and Mare Sprint

Won 10/20 Lexus Raven Run (G2)

 

Strike Silver

Juvenile Turf Sprint

Won 10/7 Indian Summer

10/19: 4f in :47.20 on dirt

War of Will

Juvenile Turf

4th in 10/7 Dixiana Bourbon (G3)

10/19: 4f in :47.20 on dirt

Norm Casse (33)

Belle Laura

Juvenile Fillies Turf

3rd in 10/10 JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G2)

 

Ben Colebrook (66)

Knicks Go

Juvenile

Won 10/6 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1)

10/19: 5f in :59.20

Limousine Liberal

Sprint/Dirt Mile

3rd in 10/5 Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G2)

10/20: 5f in 1:00.40

Mr. Crow

Sprint

2nd in 9/29 Vosburgh (G1) at BEL

 

Ignacio Correas IV (70)

Blue Prize (ARG)

Distaff

Won 10/7 Juddmonte Spinster (G1)

10/19: 4f in :47.20

Brian Lynch (40)

Oscar Performance

Mile

Won 9/15 Ricoh Woodbine Mile (G1)

at WO

10/17: 5f in 1:01 on dirt

Kenny McPeek (34)

Princesa Carolina

Juvenile Fillies Turf

5th in 10/10 JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G2)

10/19: 5f in 1:01.40 on dirt

Restless Rider

Juvenile Fillies

Won 10/5 Darley Alcibiades (G1)

10/19: 5f in 1:01.40

Signalman

Juvenile

2nd in 10/6 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1)

10/20: 5f in 1:00.20

Joe Sharp (46)

Mom’s On Strike

Filly and Mare Turf

2nd in 9/13 Ramsey Farm at KD

10/20: 4f in :49.60 on dirt

Brendan Walsh (24)

Extravagant Kid

Turf Sprint

3rd in 10/6 Woodford (G2) Presented by Keeneland Select

 

Wesley Ward (41, 47, 68)

Chelsea Cloisters

Juvenile Turf Sprint

2nd in 10/7 Indian Summer

10/21: 5f in 1:04.60

 

Dragic

Juvenile Turf Sprint

3rd in 10/7 Futurity at BEL

10/21: 5f in 1:05

 

Moonlight Romance

Juvenile Turf Sprint

Won 9/8 Kentucky Downs Juvenile Turf Sprint at KD

10/23: 4f in :49.80

 

Happy Like a Fool

Sprint/Filly and Mare Sprint

5th in 10/6 Thoroughbred Club of America (G2)

10/21: 4f in :48.40

 

Kirby’s Penny

Filly and Mare Sprint

3rd in 9/23 Gallant Bloom (G2) at BEL

10/23: 5 f in :59.20

 

Mae Never No (IRE)

Juvenile Turf Sprint

3rd in 10/6 Speakeasy at SA

10/21: 4f in :47.80 on dirt

 

Shang Shang Shang

Juvenile Turf Sprint

Won 6/21 Norfolk (G2) at Royal Ascot

10/13: 5f in 1:02 on dirt

 

Stillwater Cove

Juvenile Turf Sprint

5th in the 9/16 Natalma (G1) at WO

10/23: 4f in :50

 

 

UPCOMING STAKES PROBABLES

$200,000 HAGYARD FAYETTE (G2) (Entries taken Wednesday; race Saturday) – Hence (trainer Steve Asmussen), Leofric (Brad Cox), Hofburg (Bill Mott), Name Changer (Alan Goldberg), Nice Not Nice (Buff Bradley), Prime Attraction (James Cassidy), Rated R Superstar (Kenny McPeek), Scuba (Brendan Walsh).



                                                                                                                       FALL MEET SPECIAL EVENTS

Through Spring 2019

Keeneland Library exhibit “From the Vault: Historic Tracks.” This exhibit features 26 select images from the Library’s archive of tracks from the early 20th century. Pioneering Turf photographers John C. Hemment and Charles Christian Cook are featured, with additional representation from Joel Clyne Meadors and Robert Lee McClure, among others. The Library is open to the public Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET.

The online exhibit “Photo Treasures from the Keeneland Library” presents nearly 100 other historic images of U.S. racing facilities in its “Tracks Gallery.”

Tuesday, Oct. 23

Keeneland Library Lecture Series presents Milt C. Toby, author of “Taking Shergar: Thoroughbred Racing’s Most Famous Cold Case,” at 6:30 p.m. Following Toby’s presentation, the Library will host a reception and book signing. A limited number of “Taking Shergar” will be available for purchase. Event is free and open to the public.

 

Wednesday, Oct. 24



Backstretch Tour and Owner’s Experience Tour. Click here for more information about these tours and other Official Keeneland Tours.

WINS-Day Challenge Sponsored by Malone’s. An inexpensive way for beginning handicappers to test their skills and give handicapping contests a try, the WINS-Day Challenge has a $2,500 guaranteed pool. Enter for $10 at Wagering Central (first floor of the Grandstand) and place a mythical $2 win and place wager – no actual money required – on Keeneland races 3-8. Winners receive $1,250 with money distributed through 10th place. Limit three entries per person.

 

Thursday, Oct. 25

Tour Keeneland, Behind-the-Scenes Racing Tour and Owner’s Experience Tour. Click here for more information about these tours and other Official Keeneland Tours.

Kentucky State Parks Foundation 5th Annual Day at the Races. Support the Foundation through “The Works” package, which includes reserved row parking, brunch in the Limestone Café of the Sales Pavilion, silent auction, reserved Grandstand seating and a race-day program. For more information, call 859 351-8430 or click here.

Friday, Oct. 26

Tour Keeneland, Behind-the-Scenes Racing Tour and Owner’s Experience Tour. Click here for more information these tours and other Official Keeneland Tours.

 

Racing from the Top: Behind the Scenes at Keeneland with Chris McCarron. Tour offered by Horse Country includes reserved Grandstand seating, program and food voucher. Portion of proceeds benefit Old Friends Equine. Click here for more information and to reserve through Horse Country.

 

The Hill (weather permitting) –  Keeneland’s designated tailgate lot offers fans a jumbo screen TV to watch live racing, wagering, local food trucks and free shuttles to the Grandstand.

 

Saturday, Oct. 27

Sunrise Trackside – Halloween Edition. Thoroughbreds and their human connections begin the day well before sunrise. See what they’re up to during Sunrise Trackside, a free, family-friendly event with activities for all ages: Breakfast With the Works features breakfast for purchase and trackside commentary (7-8:30 a.m.) while racehorses train on the main track; children’s activities in the Kids Club Corner (7:30-9:30 a.m.); free guided Keeneland tours (7:30-10 a.m.); Paddock demonstration with  a miniature horse from the Kentucky Horse Park (9 a.m.); and Q&A session with a jockey in the Paddock (12:05 p.m.).



Buckles, the Keeneland Kids Club mascot, will award Kids Club prize packages to some of the best costumes.The Headless Horseman will appear in the Paddock at 9 a.m. and on the track during the race day.  

The Hill (weather permitting). Keeneland’s designated tailgate lot offers fans a jumbo screen TV to watch live racing and football, wagering, live music, local food trucks and free shuttles to the Grandstand.

 

 

 

FALL MEET LEADERS

Through Oct. 21 (13 days of 17-day season)

Jockey

Starts

Wins

2nd

3rd

Purses

Jose Ortiz

65

10

12

8

$677,214

Julien Leparoux

64

10

5

6

$624,793

Tyler Gaffalione

52

9

5

5

$1,099,852

Florent Geroux

61

7

9

11

$760,462

*Edgar Morales

44

7

1

5

$203,452

 

 

Trainer

Starts

Wins

2nd

3rd

Purses

Todd Pletcher

17

8

2

1

$469,036

Eddie Kenneally

24

6

4

1

$206,341

Mike Maker

39

6

3

4

$303,388

Brad Cox

34

4

7

5

$449,023

Ian Wilkes

39

4

4

5

$359,304

Steve Asmussen

33

4

3

4

$256,705

Ben Colebrook

23

4

1

4

$462,022

Joe Sharp

18

4

1

4

$183,821

 

 

Owner

Wins

Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey

4

Calumet Farm (Brad Kelley)

2

Marc Detampel and Sunshine State Racing (Mike Peak)

2

Homewrecker Racing (Ricki and Ron Rashinski)

2

G. Watts Humphrey

2

KRA Stud Farm (Jin Woo Lee)

2

Lothenbach Stables (Robert J. Lothenbach)

2

John C. Oxley

2

Sagamore Farm (Kevin Plank)

2

Marylou Whitney Stables (Marylou Whitney)

2

WinStar Farm (Kenny Trout), China Horse Club (Ah Khing Teo) and SF Racing (Gavin Murphy)

2