11/22/2013 3:24PM

Aqueduct: Stallion Stakes supplements cause stir, horses scratched

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Three horses were to be scratched from Saturday’s New York Stallion Stakes races at Aqueduct because they were incorrectly allowed to be supplemented to their respective races, according to racing officials.

The eligibility of a fourth horse was being evaluated by New York Racing Association attorneys Friday afternoon.

Ultimate Empire and Smooth Bert were to be scratched from the $125,000 Thunder Rumble and Ah Gaga was to be scratched from the $125,000 Staten Island, according to Andrew Byrnes, the stakes coordinator for NYRA. The connections of those three horses paid a $5,000 supplemental nomination fee as stated in the condition book.

However, supplemental nominations have never been permitted in Stallion Stakes races, which are restricted to progeny of New York-based stallions. In a Stallion Stakes series, horses are made eligible by payments long before they run in a Stallion Stakes. Horses are made eligible as weanlings for a fee of $200, as yearlings for a fee of $1,000, or by Sept. 1 of their 2-year-old year for a fee of $5,000. The first Stallion Stakes at a NYRA track is typically not run until November of a horse’s 2-year-old year.

The status of Kelli Got Frosty in Saturday’s Staten Island was being reviewed on Friday. Last November, Kelli Got Frosty won a division of the New York Stallion Stakes but was later disqualified when it was learned that she was not eligible to the series. A second horse, Nonnie Connie, was disqualified from a third-place finish in the Stallion Stakes because she, too, was never nominated.

The connections of those horses had to return the purse money and any breeders/stallions awards earned, which in the case of Kelli Got Frosty was close to $100,000, according to her breeder and part-owner Andrew Cohen.

As part of a settlement Cohen said he made with NYRA, he was allowed to make four horses – Kelli Got Frosty, Sus Annmarie’s Gold, Giant Finish, and Jesse’s Giant Dunk – eligible to the Stallion Series this summer, some 10 months after the deadline passed to make them eligible. Sus Annmaries Gold finished fifth in a Stallion Stakes race in August at Saratoga.

However, the New York Thoroughbred Breeders, which owns the rights to the series, never was made aware of the deal, according to Jeff Cannizzo, the organization’s executive director.

Cohen said it was “an oversight on the part of a knucklehead who shall remain nameless” that Kelli Got Frosty was not originally nominated to the Stallion Stakes. Cohen said he felt it was unfair that he had to return the purse money and breeders’ awards six months after Kelli Got Frosty won.

“I thought it was a joke,” Cohen said.

Roddy Valente, a New York breeder and owner who has Keep Bustin entered in the Staten Island, said it’s unfair to those who pay thousands of dollars to nominate horses before they ever run to allow horses to supplement this late in their careers.

Valente said if Kelli Got Frosty is allowed to run and finishes ahead of Keep Bustin he would sue NYRA “for the difference in the money that I should get.”

“I’m making it known now if that horse does beat me there’s going to be an issue,” he said.

Justin Time More than 1 year ago
Let's take that anon advice and boycott Aqueduct for the winter. We'll have Fairgrounds- Gulfstream- Santa Anita and all the southern tracks to choose from. Why waste your money or corruption ridden NY rac9ing? If anybody knows the names of the AQ. stewards please name and shame.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tired of all you whiners and complainers. Is every NFL game a great game? I think there are some Sundays or Mondays or Thursdays with some pretty lousy games! You can pretty much trash the entire NBA regular season as a bunch of garbage. Stop bashing horse racing for every single bad day or bad thing. Nothing is great all of the time. If you don't like horse racing, just stay away.
Thorobred Racing More than 1 year ago
Looks like Aqueduct racing is going into the abyss. Thursday we had the stewards pulling a fast one in the 7th. race against Castellano and the betting public. They should all be put in jail for their actions. Today we had a mess of racing with scratches galore. Now this mess with nominations. Can anyone especially the NY racing association assure the betting public that somebody is being a watchdog over all these shenanigans.
ratakabundai . More than 1 year ago
Castellano clearly deserved to be taken down on thursday...he was...he did not deserve to be taken down on friday...he was not.
Will More than 1 year ago
that was the easiest call of the year. wah wah wah!
Justin Pecora More than 1 year ago
Castellano coming down was a no brainer, the only argument anyone could make was "Did he bother the 3rd place finisher.", and that was at best 75/25.
Raymond Hackinson More than 1 year ago
Painting murals and opening a new bar is no substitute for anything resembling quality racing Purses could be sky high and no one is willing to run at Aqueduct in the winter The ninth race on 11/22 is typical How could they scratch an even money horse at the last minute when the horse was so decrepit looking? I saw this horse as they were coming out and he looked malnourished I wound up with the two MTO horses in an exacta that paid 10.80. Being as these horses were enter on a subsequent day makes me think the fix was in. Looking back on the card they on 11/22/63, the product has greatly diminished. They can't complain about competition as they had Naragansett and Pimlico at the time
W.G. More than 1 year ago
The problem today is horses don't race nearly as often as they did 50 years ago, and we have declining foal crops. Back then, this point was just about the end of the season for NYRA, with NYRA taking three months off from just after Thanksgiving until around mid-March. Because of logistical issues, that is not possible today, but it may be time for NYRA to seriously consider making the Saturday after Thanksgiving the last scheduled day of racing until Dec. 26, the day after Christmas, with racing every day until Jan. 1 and then 2-3 day-a-week racing in January and February before going to 3-4 days a week in March.
ratakabundai . More than 1 year ago
today was just simply a garbage card at Aqueduct...garbage...it is going to be a very long and bleak winter watching mediocre horses running for inflated purses and trying to beat obvious favorites...394 dollar pick 6....what a joke...I mean waste of time
LUCA More than 1 year ago
Winter racing beats no racing!
joe donato More than 1 year ago
very well put, i agree. i hate chalk
Will More than 1 year ago
so then don't play!