Kentucky Derby Preps: Southwest Stakes - Posted on: February 27, 2021

By Margaret Ransom Saturday marks the 56th running of the Southwest Stakes (G3) at Oaklawn Park after a nearly two-week delay due to winter storm Uri, which blanketed the southeast From Texas to North Florida with frigid temperatures, ice, and snow for about 10 days. The race had been postponed three times, but still drew a field of seven, including Godolphin’s 2-year-old male champion Essential Quality. The Southwest the traditional prep for the Rebel Stakes (G2), which is in two weeks because of the delay, and the Arkansas Derby (G1), which is set for April 10. In 55 previous editions,

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Weekend Races At A Glance: Post Times and TV Lineup - Posted on: February 25, 2021

By US Racing Team The $300,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream Park and the 3-year-old debut of champion Essential Quality in the $750,000 Southwest Stakes (G3) at Oaklawn Park highlight Saturday’s top races. Both are preps for the Kentucky Derby (G1) on May 1: The Fountain of Youth offers qualifying points of 50-20-10-5 to the first four finishers; the Southwest offers points of 10-4-2-1. Also, the $100,000 John Battaglia Memorial Stakes on Friday night at Turfway Park offers points of 10-4-2-1. America’s Day at the Races will air eight hours of live racing from Aqueduct, Oaklawn Park and Gulfstream

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American Pharoah, Pletcher Top Finalists List For Racing’s Hall of Fame - Posted on: February 25, 2021

By US Racing Team Can there be two unanimous selections to the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame Class of 2021? Maybe, maybe not, but there should be: 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and seven-time Eclipse Award winning trainer Todd Pletcher. Both were chosen as finalists in their first year of eligibility by the 15 members on the Museum’s Hall of Fame nominating committee. Five other racehorses, two trainers and one jockey also made the list of finalists, which was released on Feb. 25. The other horses are Blind Luck, Game On Dude, Havre de Grace, Kona Gold,

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Kentucky Derby Preps: Fountain of Youth - Posted on: February 25, 2021

By Margaret Ransom The Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon set out in the 1500s in search of a mythical fountain, which was believed to be located in the southeastern part of the North American continent and gave all who drank from it eternal youth. Gulfstream Park named a race in honor of the mythical tale and now in its 79th running, the $300,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) has become a key stop on the road to the Kentucky Derby (G1), which is set for May 1 at Churchill Downs. Holy Bull Stakes (G3) winner Greatest Honour, trained

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Eddie Mac’s Book: Betting Bonanza On Fountain Of Youth Day - Posted on: February 25, 2021

By Ed McNamara There’s no better place to hang out than at a racetrack. In 40 years, I’ve met fascinating characters at 116 of them from Hong Kong to Berlin, from Del Mar to Saratoga. A few even offered advice that made sense. Most lost money in the long run, as 95% of horseplayers do. It’s not as if they didn’t understand this maddening game, just that they were undisciplined and made too many bad decisions. I fondly recall a long-gone pal who loved to bet tons. Many times, I stood behind Steve as he chanted long, complex strings of

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2021 Southwest Stakes: Essential Quality Favored, But Don’t Count Out Jackie’s Warrior - Posted on: February 25, 2021

By Noel Michaels Yes, the Southwest Stakes (G3) will take place on Saturday, and hopes are high that early Kentucky Derby (G1) favorite Essential Quality will have a smooth and successful 3-year-old debut. The Southwest will be run at 1 1/16 miles for a purse of $750,000 and has drawn a field of seven. The race has been rescheduled three times due to weather issues, and now there are only two weeks separating the Southwest with Oaklawn’s next major Derby prep, the $1 million Rebel Stakes (G2) on March 13. The field for the Southwest held together, and even picked

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Essential Quality 3-2 In Southwest; Gretzky The Great 3-1 In Battaglia; Arlington Up For Sale - Posted on: February 24, 2021

By Richard Rosenblatt It could rain but it won’t snow at Oaklawn Park on Saturday when unbeaten Essential Quality finally makes his 3-year-old debut in the $750,000 Southwest Stakes (G3). What is the weather for the Southwest Stakes? The weather forecast for Hot Springs, Arkansas is calling for temperatures in the low 60’s with a 60% chance of rain showers during the day, and temperatures in the 50’s and a 75% chance of rain in the evening. What is the weather for the Southwest Stakes? Post time for the Southwest is 4:58 p.m. CT. Whatever the weather, the race is

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Essential Quality 3-1 In Southwest; Gretzky The Great 3-1 In Battaglia; Arlington Up For Sale - Posted on: February 24, 2021

By Richard Rosenblatt It could rain but it won’t snow at Oaklawn Park on Saturday when unbeaten Essential Quality finally makes his 3-year-old debut in the $750,000 Southwest Stakes (G3). What is the weather for the Southwest Stakes? The weather forecast for Hot Springs, Arkansas is calling for temperatures in the low 60’s with a 60% chance of rain showers during the day, and temperatures in the 50’s and a 75% chance of rain in the evening. What is the weather for the Southwest Stakes? Post time for the Southwest is 4:58 p.m. CT. Whatever the weather, the race is

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Horse Racing Walks Fine Line With Whip Rule - Posted on: February 24, 2021

By Mike Farrell Spare the whip, spoil the outcome. That is the direction we are headed, as exemplified by the latest ruling from the Jockey Club of Saudi Arabia following Saturday’s $20 million Saudi Cup. The stewards took David Egan to task for use of the “whip above the permitted level” in rousing Mishriff to victory in the world’s richest race. Egan’s crime: he exceeded the rule that limits a rider to 10 strikes. While they were handing out penalties, the stewards also slapped Mike Smith with a two-day suspension for his ride on runner-up Charlatan. Egan took the brunt

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Fountain of Youth Betting Odds: Gulfstream’s Late Pick 5 - Posted on: February 24, 2021

US Racing Looks Back: 2020 Fountain of Youth Betting Odds During 2021, US Racing will look back at some of the stories from our contributors, ranging from handicapping columns, features, and race recaps. Fountain Of Youth Betting Odds: Gulfstream’s Late Pick 5 By Noel Michaels Saturday’s Fountain of Youth card at Gulfstream Park is a doozy, featuring 14 races including 10 stakes races (nine graded) and headlined by the $400,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) for 3-year-olds on the Kentucky Derby trail going 1 1/16 miles. The all-stakes late Pick 5 sequence encompasses races 10-14, and with a 50-cent denomination,

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