Updated on 08/13/2014 8:52AM

Magician, Real Solution lead Arlington Million pre-entries

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Barbara D. Livingston
Magician was pre-entered for the Arlington Million on Aug. 16 at Arlington Park.

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – Magician and defending race winner Real Solution head a short list of pre-entered horses for the Aug. 16 Arlington Million.

Pre-entries, including $15,000 worth of entry and starting fees, were due Friday, and just seven horses were pre-entered in the Million. If all start, it will equal the smallest number of Million runners in the race’s 32-year history, and seven is no certainty. Hardest Core was pre-entered in the Million and the American St. Leger and still could start instead in the Sword Dancer at Saratoga. Finnegan’s Wake, Side Glance, Smoking Sun, and Up With the Birds were pre-entered along with Hardest Core, Magician, and Real Solution.

If all seven start, it will equal the smallest number of Million runners in the race’s 32-year history, and seven is no certainty. Hardest Core was pre-entered in the Million and the American St. Leger, and still could start instead in the Sword Dancer at Saratoga. Finnegans Wake, Side Glance, Smoking Sun, and Up With the Birds were pre-entered along with Hardest Core, Magician, and Real Solution. Trading Leather, the 2013 Irish Derby winner and a leading Million hopeful, was withdrawn from consideration Friday with what officials from the International Racing Bureau described as a minor setback.

Magician’s presence is a coup for Arlington, as the Million does not often attract the previous season’s Breeders’ Cup Turf winner. Magician could become the first horse since Manila in 1987 to win the Million the summer after capturing the Breeders’ Cup Turf. His trainer, Aidan O’Brien, has twice won the Million and saw Powerscourt disqualified in 2004 from what would have been a third Million score for the trainer. Jockey Joseph O’Brien, Aidan’s son, has been named to ride. Magician most recently finished sixth in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, his worst showing among five 2014 starts.

Real Solution was placed first via the disqualification of The Apache in the 2013 Million, and crossed the finish line first for the first time in eight North American starts winning the June 7 Manhattan Stakes.

Smoking Sun and Side Glance are the other overseas shippers. Smoking Sun, a Group 2 winner based in France, most recently finished second in the International Cup in Singapore on May 18. Side Glance finished third in the 2013 Million and in his most recent start was third in the United Nations at Monmouth.

Up With the Birds looked like Canada’s best turf horse winning the July 19 Nijinsky at Woodbine by four lengths. Finnegans Wake was victorious last month in a muddled running of the Arlington Handicap. Hardest Core never has contested a graded stakes, but he was a sharp winner of the Cape Henlopen over 1 1/2 miles last month at Delaware Park.

Final entries will be taken and post positions assigned on Tuesday for the 1 1/4-mile Million as well as the other three major stakes on the Aug. 16 card.

Eleven pre-entered for Beverly D.

Somali Lemonade and Stephanie’s Kitten, the one-two finishers in the Grade 1 Diana at Saratoga, head 11 pre-entrants in the $750,000 Beverly D. for fillies and mares.

The other pre-entered horses are Alterite, Euro Charline, Emollient, I’m Already Sexy, Just the Judge, La Tia, Sparking Beam, Street of Gold, and Tannery.

Martin Schwartz, Alterite’s owner, has won the Beverly D. three of the last eight years, with Stacelita, Gorella, and Angara. Alterite finished eighth in the Diana making her first start in 2014 for trainer Chad Brown, who also sends out Stephanie’s Kitten.

The three Europeans – Euro Charline, Just The Judge, and Sparkling Beam – are decent but will have no obvious edge on the best North American-based horses.

Other undercard pre-entries

O’Brien also will have the $500,000 Secretariat favorite in Adelaide, who finished a close second in the $1.25 million Belmont Derby in a previous overseas journey this summer. Ryan Moore has been named to ride Adelaide, and O’Brien also intends to start a less-accomplished horse named Belisarius.

The other pre-entrants in a deep, interesting field are Can’thelpbelieving, Divine Oath, General Jack, Global View, Highball, Sheldon, and Tourist. Flamboyant and Aventador still were possible pre-entrants mid-afternoon Friday.

The $400,000 American St. Leger should have the best field in its three-year history, headed by the 2013 winner Dandino. The other pre-entered horses are Admiral Kitten, Big Kick, Eye of the Storm, Havana Beat, Hardest Core, Infinite Magic, Moment in Time, Moro Tap, Suntracer, and The Pizza Man.

Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Up With The Birds/Magician/Smoking Sun.
dude More than 1 year ago
IL racing is in a downward spiral. This is the worst summer of quality & quantity (field sizes) I can recall. Multiple factors in play including ownership, track surface and politics. They could only put together 8 races for this Friday?
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
What happen to Dank, why isn't she running this year. Is she injured or retired anyone know
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
She ran last at Royal Ascot June 18 in the Prince of Wales' stakes and finished 5 of 8. Looks like the Irish Champions Stakes are on the cards for her.
Jim Coughlin More than 1 year ago
The Million should attract top talent. What's the explanation trainers are offering to explain the apparent lack of interest? There's certainly no super horse entered who is scaring them off. I'm sure some may have been displeased with Arlington's mediocre staging of the Breeders' Cup but hasn't the track made an effort tore-established itself as a top notch facility for horsemen? Wouldn't a two week festival of racing and special events draw interest leading up to the Million Day races?
Greg More than 1 year ago
California horse pop is gone. I can't think of a good router except Enterprising. Slim Shady won a grade 1 in Cali. He can't hit the board in NY.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Yep, there was a time when runners from the Eddie Read were sure starters in the AP Million. I don't think any are coming this year. And for good reason, they don't belong
Steve More than 1 year ago
I'm pretty sure tom's tribute could beat most of the prospective million field. Half the horses in the million pre entries don't belong
Greg More than 1 year ago
What they say is trainers are not training for 1 1/4 turf much anymore, cause conditions r changing to 1 1/2 to 1 1/8. This million field is so pathetic I can't believe it. Pizza Man will go gate to wire. Book it! Rolling exotics people.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Could have wrote a touch more about Up With The Birds. The horse is a G1winning horse going the distance, and also won going 12f last year. All he gets is he looks to be Canada's top turf horse...lol. Come back here when UWTB beats Magician in Chicago.
jon g More than 1 year ago
That's all he is
RandomNameMeToo More than 1 year ago
Canada's top turf horse often isn't much.
jon g More than 1 year ago
What a shame. The worst Million field I can remember. Millions Day used to be a summer highlight. Now it looks like another humdrum day. And where are the Cali horses?
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
There are 4 GR1 winners in this field of 7. You have the BC turf champ, Jamaica/Breeder stakes winner, and the returning Arlington Million Champ. Not to mention the vet Side Glance. This is a better field then last year.
jon g More than 1 year ago
Last years field was 10x better than this,and also a much,much better betting race
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Betting wise, yes I agree. But Magician, Up With The Birds are better horses then Apache and Real Solution.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Well now Trading leather is scratched which makes for 4GR1 winners
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Magician did not look good in his last race in the UK. Guessing they think it's easier over here. if you don't believe me you see the Euro horses on Youtube.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
The ground. He loves firm ground and didn't get that in the KG/QE2.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Why are folks avoiding this race? It's one million on a very nice grass course. The grass at AP has proven to be safe and pretty fair to all. There are no California horses ready to run? CA horses have not had many chances to run lately. Los Al has no turf & Dmr has provided limited opportunities too.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Saratoga took some quality starters away. Seek Again should be here, as should another Kitten turf horse, along with Mr.Speaker all should have been in this field. Oh well.
Walter More than 1 year ago
I wonder if Mott questions the distance limitations of Seek Again? Juddmonte has enjoyed a lot of success in the G1s at AP over the years, so they aren't worried about shipping there.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
After the Forster David, hard to argue with ya. BC mile seems to be the plan for that one going forward.
Pagani Zonda More than 1 year ago
Sorry auto correct on my tablet.