February 12, 2018
An impressive maiden win Saturday at Gulfstream was enough to convince trainer Mark Casse to point He Takes Charge for a Derby prep in his next start.
Imperial Hint, the standout sprinter who was second to Roy H in the Nov. 4 Breeders' Cup Sprint at Del Mar in his last start at 4, returned to the work tab Saturday when breezing a half-mile in a bullet 47.40 seconds over a fast Tampa Bay Downs track.
Magnum Moon, with a 95 Beyer Speed Figure from his first start, is part of a terrific group of 3-year-olds trying to prove themselves around two turns in the best race on a rare Thursday program at Tampa Bay Downs.
With a handful of hopefuls for the 2018 Kentucky Derby, trainer Dale Romans is doing his level best to cut through all the clutter and various options and make it back home to Louisville with one shot or more at the roses.
Twenty-four hours after his Heart to Heart finally broke through with his first Grade 1 victory – a hard-fought neck decision over Kurilov in the nine-furlong Gulfstream Park Turf on Saturday – trainer Brian Lynch was still a little choked up.
Howard Bender, who died in September 2015, has posthumously been named Maryland breeder of the year for 2017.
Trainer Bobby Ribaudo and owner Marc Keller have carefully managed the career of Quezon, who will be among the favorites in the Grade 2 Barbara Fritchie at Laurel Park on Saturday.
Cat Burglar and Dalmore, stakes winners in 2016, have been on the same career path in the last seven months.
Pavel, a troubled fourth in the Grade 2 San Pasqual Stakes at Santa Anita on Feb. 3, is a likely starter in the meeting's top race for older horses – the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap on March 10.
Pee Wee Reese, a winner of two stakes at Santa Anita since July, will not race again until the spring at the earliest.