November 5, 1988 |
Rainy weather may keep today's Breeders' Cup crowd from swelling to an estimated 75,000 at Churchill Downs, but for those who do come and the national television audience, handicapping will be more of a challenge than ever. Of the seven favorites, two horses--Alysheba in the Classic and Miesque in the Mile--would appear to have less chance in the mud.
February 12, 1989 |
In a half-century of stewardship, the Donn family has established Gulfstream Park as one of the East's most important, skillfully managed racetracks, the cumulative product of the careers of founder Jimmy Donn Sr.; his son, Jimmy Donn Jr., and grandson, Doug Donn.
November 10, 1988 |
Marje Everett, the chief operating officer at Hollywood Park, can do the track, Jack Van Berg, the sport and racing fans a favor. While Clarence Scharbauer and his family are debating whether to retire Alysheba to stud or continue his racing career, Everett can help them make the decision. All she has to do is increase the purse for the 1 1/2-mile Hollywood Turf Cup on Dec. 24 from $500,000 to $1 million. The Scharbauers are wealthy. Clarence, 63, is a Midland (Tex.
March 6, 1989 |
The losers usually cry, but on Sunday it was Barry Irwin, one of the owners of Martial Law, who was sobbing after his 4-year-old colt, a 50-1 longshot in a crowd of 58,240, became the second most improbable winner in the 52-year history of the Santa Anita Handicap. The red-eyed Irwin, his legs considerably more rubbery than his horse's, needed the support of his wife, Becky, to go from the winner's circle to the champagne toasts in the director's room.
September 3, 1989 |
Claire Marine, the Irish-bred filly who might have been a factor had she been entered in today's Arlington Million, settled for a wire-to-wire victory in the $500,000 Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington International Saturday. Allowed to establish a slow early pace on a grass course listed as yielding, Claire Marine shrugged off a few challengers through the stretch to earn $300,000 for her owners, Chicagoan Sidney Port and Charlie Whittingham, who also trains the 4-year-old filly.
September 4, 1989 |
Under a jockey who had ridden him only once before, and running because his trainers finally were convinced that he had the stamina to win, Steinlen scored a half-length victory over Lady in Silver in the ninth Arlington Million before a crowd of 30,129 Sunday. Steinlen, a 6-year-old English-bred owned by Daniel Wildenstein, a Paris art dealer, ran a masterpiece.
April 22, 1989 |
This time last year, Great Communicator was considered little more than a fluke, a freak and a figment of Thad Ackel's fertile imagination. Then the brawling, back-alley gelding went out and won the San Juan Capistrano Handicap, Santa Anita's most prestigious grass race, and a legend was on the loose. By the end of 1988, Great Communicator had run out more than $2 million in winnings, taking the Breeders' Cup Turf race along the way. People were comparing him to John Henry, the patron saint of all overachievers who begin life on the wrong side of the race track.
February 26, 1989 |
It was a serendipitous event Saturday at Santa Anita when a trainer thought her horse had been beaten by a head but it won by a nose. Bello Horizonte, running for only the fourth time in 14 months, closed from the outside to nip another closer, Sarhoob, by a nostril. The improbable finish to the $100,000 Arcadia Handicap surprised most of the principals as well as the 32,480 fans.
February 15, 1989 |
Rocked by this cocaine scandal, Santa Anita race track stepped up its in-barn investigation this week. Federal agents are questioning all suspected users and dealers, in the hope of putting an end to this nagging problem. This reporter was present at Barns 680, 440 and 220 as Animal Drug Enforcement Agency investigators Haygood and Oates interrogated a number of alleged addicts. "What's your name, boy?" "Man O' War, man." "C'mon, c'mon, don't lie to us or we'll run you downtown." "OK. Ed.
November 7, 1988 |
It was, in a sense, a delightful finish to an amazing story. Ten years ago, a chestnut filly named Amazer came from 19 lengths off the pace to become the first 3-year-old to win the prestigious Yellow Ribbon Stakes, the nation's richest turf race for fillies and mares. On Sunday, in front of 34,484 at Santa Anita, Delighter, a brown filly with a distinctive white face, emulated her mother by winning the 12th running of the $400,000 Grade I event.