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NEWSWIRE

Dullahan beats non-dyed Hansen in Blue Grass Stakes

In the final furlong of the Kentucky Derby prep race, Dullahan gets past Hansen, who earlier in the day had his tail partially dyed royal blue at the request of his owner and then had the color washed out before the race for fear of a penalty.

April 14, 2012|Staff and wire reports
  • Jockey Kent Desormeaux guides Dullahan to a 1 1/4-length victory in the $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Ky., on Saturday.
Jockey Kent Desormeaux guides Dullahan to a 1 1/4-length victory in the… (Garry Jones / Associated…)

Dullahan ran down Hansen in the final furlong to insert his own name among the Kentucky Derby favorites in the $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky.

Dullahan went off at 3-1 odds, running the 1 1/8 miles on the Polytrack in 1.47.94 under Kent Desormeaux to beat the near white colt that was the center of attention because his owner, Dr. Kendall Hansen, had arranged for the horse's tail to be partially dyed royal blue, the same as the University of Kentucky's colors. It was later washed out before the race.

The decision to color the horse's tail may have caused a division between the owner and trainer Mike Maker after a confrontation in the paddock.

"Maybe [Hansen] could've relaxed a little bit more if he didn't have somebody working on his tail all the time. I don't know," Dr. Hansen told the Associated Press more than two hours after the race. "It kind of hurt me and Mike's relationship. We're going to have to talk it out. It was just a lack of communication. I went to a lot of effort to get this thing arranged."

Earlier Dr. Hansen explained: "The thing that screwed it up was one of the stewards came down and talked to Mike personally early in the day and said if we brought him over with a blue tail, they'd scratch him. Then I went over and talked to the stewards and they said there was no way they would scratch him. They'd probably fine me or something. So, I couldn't get that information to Mike. It might have made a little bit more national news if he pulled it off. It's disappointing for me."

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At Hot Springs, Ark., Bodemeister pulled away for a 9 1/2 -length victory in the Grade 1, $1-million Arkansas Derby at a warm and windy Oaklawn Park.

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Jockeys Martin Pedroza and Eswan Flores were thrown from their horses in a spill during the ninth race at Santa Anita. Both were taken to Huntington Memorial Hospital, where a spokeswoman said each was in stable condition and expected to be "OK." The horses involved in the spill galloped off and were taken by outriders.

— Eric Sondheimer

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Grand National prerace favorite Synchronised was one of two horses to die during one the world's toughest steeplechases, which was won by 33-1 shot Neptune Collonges in the closest finish in the history of the race at Aintree, England.

Synchronised went down at the sixth fence of the 41/2 -mile, 30-fence race. According To Pete went down at the same fence, but later in the race. The start was delayed when Synchronised unseated jockey Tony McCoy. Race organizers said the horse was "thoroughly checked" by a veterinarian and allowed to line up in the 40-horse field.

"In both cases the horse incurred a fracture to the leg and the humane option was to put the injured horses down," said Tim Morris of the British Horseracing Authority.

PRO BASKETBALL

Magic's Howard has disk injury

Orlando center Dwight Howard, who has missed five of the Magic's last seven games, is listed as out with a herniated disk in his lower back for Orlando's game in Cleveland on Sunday.

The Associated Press reported that there is no timetable for his return, which will be based on how he responds to treatment. Howard is not traveling with the team and was examined in Los Angeles by Dr. Robert Watkins after Howard flew there for a second opinion on what was called back spasms last month.

GOLF

Petterson leads at Hilton Head

Carl Pettersson had a run of five straight birdies on the front nine and finished with a birdie on the 18th hole for a 66 and a one-stroke lead over Colt Knost after the third round of the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

After rain interrupted play Saturday at the Malaysian Open, South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen went on to complete his third round Sunday with a three-under 69 for a one-stroke lead going into the final round in Kuala Lumpur.

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Michael Allen shot a four-under 67 to take a five-stroke second-round lead in the Champions Tour's Encompass Insurance Pro-Am of Tampa Bay.

TENNIS

Isner reaches U.S. Clay Court final

John Isner defeated Feliciano Lopez, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (4), 6-3, to advance to the final of the U.S. Clay Court Championship at River Oaks Country Club in Houston. Isner will play Juan Monaco, who defeated qualifier Michael Russell, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4. The 6-foot-9 Isner has won 44 consecutive service games in the tournament and used 13 aces to beat Lopez, a Spaniard ranked 15th in the world.

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At Copenhagen, top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki beat Petra Martic, 6-3, 6-2, to set up an e-Boks final against Angelique Kerber of Germany. Kerber beat third-seeded Jelena Jankovic, 6-2, 6-1, in the other semifinal, breaking the former top-ranked Serb five times while never dropping serve.

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Third-seeded Pablo Andujar and seventh-seeded Albert Ramos advanced to the final of the ATP Grand Prix Hassan II tournament with straight-set victories at Casablanca, Morocco.

ETC.

Five cities make Olympic presentations

The five cities — Tokyo; Madrid; Istanbul; Doha, Qatar; and Baku, Azerbaijan — seeking to host the 2020 Summer Olympics made presentations in Moscow to the heads of national Olympic committees. The IOC's executive committee will decide in late May whether to narrow the field or keep all the applicant cities as candidates. The International Olympic Committee will pick the winning city in September 2013.

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Barcelona forward Lionel Messi scored a 72nd-minute penalty against Levante at Valencia, Spain, to match Cristiano Ronaldo's Spanish league-record of 41 goals in a season, which Ronaldo had set less than two hours earlier. Messi trailed Ronaldo by two goals going into the match but earlier curled home a 64th-minute equalizer to close the gap to one.

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Florence Schelling made 50 saves to help Switzerland beat Finland, 6-2, in the bronze-medal game in the Women's World Hockey Championships at Burlington, Vt.

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