June 4, 2014 |
When reservations became scarce for the trains running between Philadelphia and New York on the day of the 2004 Belmont Stakes, that's when trainer John Servis realized this Smarty Jones thing was starting to finally get out of hand. "It was crazy. It wasn't like that the first two races. I don't think a lot of people were sold on my horse then. I didn't feel any pressure for either of those two races," Servis said. "But the Belmont was completely different, and more from our city than anywhere.
May 21, 2014 |
THE CALIFORNIA Chrome nasal strip "controversy" lasted 24 hours. The Belmont Park stewards announced yesterday morning that all horses running at New York Racing Association tracks (Belmont, Aqueduct, Saratoga) will be permitted to use nasal strips. The Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner has used the strip during his six-race winning streak. Trainer Art Sherman said on Sunday at Pimlico that co-owner Perry Martin would be so unhappy if the colt was not allowed to use the nasal strip in New York that he might not run CC in the June 7 Belmont Stakes and give up a shot at the Triple Crown.
May 19, 2014 |
BALTIMORE - The story got better for California Chrome on Saturday, and it was pretty good already. The chestnut colt that hasn't lost a race as a 3-year-old followed up his Kentucky Derby victory two weeks ago with an authoritative Preakness Stakes win to set up a potential Triple Crown scenario for the Belmont Stakes on June 7. Twelve other horses have been in this position since Affirmed won the Triple Crown in 1978, and all of them either...
April 28, 2014 |
A muscular and finely groomed chestnut stallion of ordinary stature - age 13, still rambunctious - was led down a stone-dust path from his barn to a breeding shed, where a mare named Love's Clever Trick awaited. The stallion knew his job. Nine minutes later, Love's Clever Trick was back in her trailer hitched to a truck, leaving Peach Bottom, Lancaster County. For Smarty Jones, it was just another Thursday afternoon's work. It has been 10 years since a horse stabled at Philadelphia Park set the horse racing world briefly ablaze, winning the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, coming within a tantalizing length of the Triple Crown, setting attendance marks at the Preakness and Belmont Stakes.
September 20, 2013 |
MIKE E. SMITH turned 48 last month. When he is in town to ride the last four races at Parx on Saturday, the Hall of Fame jockey ought to get together with Bernard Hopkins and compare notes. If Hopkins isn't the best conditioned late-40s athlete in America, then Smith is. Like Hopkins, Smith seldom performs anymore. He waits for the big moments. And he wins. Smith began riding 30 years ago. If he wasn't an instant success, it did not take long. By 1993, he was winning 342 races in a single year.
September 15, 2013 |
The St. Louis Blues and defenseman Alex Pietrangelo , 23, agreed on a seven-year, $45.5 million contract with a no-trade clause over the final three years, ending a brief holdout. The deal was announced Friday, one day after the first practice of training camp. Dallas Stars forward Rich Peverley will miss three weeks after undergoing a procedure to correct an irregular heartbeat. HORSE RACING Change of Command is the favorite for Parx's $250,000 PTHA President's Cup, a 11/8-mile turf race Saturday.
September 4, 2013 |
NEARLY 10 YEARS from the day Smarty Jones ran the first race of his life at what was then Philadelphia Park, the star of the show on Smarty Jones Day at Parx Racing yesterday was Stewart Elliott. It was Elliott who rode Smarty in November 2003 until June 2004, when the horse nearly became the second unbeaten winner of the Triple Crown. On Labor Day, Elliott won the $350,000 Turf Monster on a 28-1 shot and followed that 30 minutes later by winning the featured race of the day on the favorite, a mile-and-70-yard, $350,000 race for 3-year-olds, the Smarty Jones Stakes.
July 26, 2013 |
LAST FALL, Monmouth Park was used as a shelter/command post after Superstorm Sandy devastated the New Jersey coastline. The main track building, just 2 miles west of the Atlantic Ocean, did not suffer any serious damage, but nine barns on the backstretch did have to be replaced. Approximately 1,000 displaced local residents stayed in the grandstand while 2,000 more lived for a time in tents located in the parking lot. Sunday, the track will be very much alive when the $1 million Haskell Invitational, the track's signature race, is run, the 13th of 14 races on a card that will begin at noon.
June 10, 2013 |
ELMONT. N.Y. - In the last 15 years, as American training methods have changed dramatically and top horses never race three times in 5 weeks except during the Triple Crown, only two horses that ran in each of the events during racing's marquee series have been able to win the Belmont Stakes. In this era, to survive the series and come out the other side with a victory, it takes sensational animals like 2001 Horse of the Year Point Given and Philly's own 2005 3-year-old champion Afleet Alex.
June 9, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas will be looking for a fifth Belmont Stakes win Saturday when he saddles Oxbow and Will Take Charge. One more win and Lukas ties Woody Stephens, who won the Belmont five years in a row starting in 1982. Lukas still has a way to go to catch James G. Rowe Sr., the all-time leader with eight wins. On a rainy Friday morning, Lukas reflected on his four Belmont winners: Tabasco Cat (1994), Thunder Gulch (1995), Editor's Note (1996), and Commendable (2000)