Category: horse racing

Hawthorne Closing Day, 1.12.19: Full-Card Picks and Analysis

Even though the Hawthorne Thoroughbred meet ran two weeks longer than usual, even such good things must inevitably end.  Saturday, January 12 marks the final day of the fall meet.  Unlike last winter there will be no harness meet through January and February; Thoroughbred horses who stay in town will still be allowed to stable... Read more »

2019 Sham Stakes Preview

Arlington Park has a Grade 1 turf race named after the hero of the 1973 Triple Crown series.  Santa Anita, on the other hand, has a Grade 3 dirt race — an early-stage Derby prep — named after that year’s perpetual bridesmaid.  Perhaps if Sham were born in any other year, his name would be nestled... Read more »

Hawthorne Race 8 Preview: Super High Five Mandatory Payout

Though the meet at Hawthorne Race Course runs through Saturday, January 12, state law dictates that all carryover pools must pay out at the end of the calendar year.  Today is Hawthorne’s last race day of 2018, meaning the $52,170 carryover in the Super High Five pool has to go, no matter how many winning tickets... Read more »

2018 Malibu Stakes and La Brea Stakes Preview, and Wednesday Stakes Selections

Southern California horse racing gets back underway at Santa Anita Park on Wednesday, December 26, after a ten-day break. The card features five stakes races, including the pair of Grade 1 races for three-year-olds that have become the cornerstone of Santa Anita’s December opening day.  The pair of top-level races includes the Malibu, a seven-furlong... Read more »

2018 Mr. Prospector Stakes Preview

Saturday’s lone graded race at Gulfstream takes its name from a pretty good sprinter.  Mr. Prospector won seven of his 14 career starts, including the 1974 Gravesend Handicap and the 1974 Whirlaway Handicap. Of course, the racetrack was not where this son of Raise a Native made his biggest impact — he ruled the stud barn. ... Read more »

Fort Lauderdale Stakes Preview and Saturday Gulfstream Stakes Selections

Saturday’s graded stakes action happens at Gulfstream, so that’s where Picks and Ponderings turns its attention.  The main focus of this piece is the Grade 2 Fort Lauderdale Stakes, a nine-furlong turf test that takes its name from the city thirteen miles north of Gulfstream Park. We have full analysis of the Fort Lauderdale, and selections... Read more »

IRISH MARVEL Impresses in the Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante

STICKNEY/CICERO, IL — Two-year-old Illinois-registered fillies took centre stage at Hawthorne in today’s Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante, in which Irish Marvel sharpened the focus on her as an Illinois-bred filly to watch.  A game winner of a maiden sprint on October 26, in which she outslugged Ghaaleb Royale after a protracted duel, Irish Marvel stretched out... Read more »

2018 Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante Preview

The Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante was originally scheduled for December 1, but that day’s entire card was cancelled due to the dangers of a thawing track.  With consistent cold weather through this week, the track should be back to a safe and even footing with no more worries about a big thaw, and all the... Read more »

2018 Cigar Mile Preview and Stakes Selections

Being based in Chicago, we were obviously going to preview Saturday’s Pat Whitworth Illinois Debutante at Hawthorne. But, with huge racing going on elsewhere, we couldn’t stop there.  For the first time ever, we did a Twitter poll, asking readers what else to look at.  There was plenty of support for both options, Cigar Mile... Read more »

2018 Thanksgiving Handicapping Feast: Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes and Golden Rod Stakes

Saturday is the second-to-last day of the fall meet at Churchill Downs.  The card features all two-year-old racing, all day long, and will be anchored by a pair of Grade 2 dirt routes, the Kentucky Jockey Club and the Golden Rod.  They are both points races for next season’s three-year-old features in Louisville: the Kentucky... Read more »