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Stephen Foster Day media notes

Compiled by Churchill Downs’ publicity department/Kevin Kerstein. (Coady photo of Mandaloun working before last year’s Kentucky Derby)

Derby winner Mandaloun, Americanrevolution works for $750K Foster

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Saturday, June 25, 2022) – One week before the $750,000 Stephen Foster (Grade II) at Churchill Downs, probable entrants Mandaloun (five furlongs, 1:00.80), Americanrevolution (five furlongs, 1:00.20) and Title Ready (four furlongs, :49.40) logged their final moves Saturday prior to the 1 1/8-mile race.

          Juddmonte’s Mandaloun, the 2021 Kentucky Derby (GI) winner, worked at 5:30 a.m. (all times Eastern) for trainer Brad Cox. The 4-year-old son of Into Mischief breezed solo, which has been different than his previous works when he was in company with stablemate Fulsome.

          “We thought about running in the Salvador Mile (at Monmouth Park) but it didn’t make sense to ship him across the country with the hot weather when we can run out of our own stall at Churchill,” Cox said. “Once we got him back to the barn after the Saudi Cup, he’s really been doing well at Churchill and we’ve been very pleased with his progress from that race to run him in a race like the Stephen Foster.”

          CHC Inc and WinStar Farm’s New York-bred Americanrevolution worked at 7:30 a.m. in company with $200,000 Blame Stakes winner Dynamic One. The two Todd Pletcher trainees galloped out six furlongs in 1:13. Americanrevolution finished fourth, beaten three lengths in the Blame.

          “It was maybe a better race than it looks on paper,” Pletcher said. “He was pretty wide on both turns – figure wise, it came back solid. I think he took all the worst of it there off the layoff and when his schedule was adjusted late (when the Commentator at Belmont Park did not fill). He should be ready to move forward.”

          Dyanmic One is likely to run in the $400,000 Suburban (GII) on July 9 at Belmont Park, according to Pletcher.

          Charles Fipke’s homebred Title Ready finished third in the $500,000 Alysheba (GII) in his last start behind top Stephen Foster contender Olympiad.

          Entries for the Stephen Foster will close Wednesday.

MATT WINN VICTOR CYBERKNIFE WORKS HALF-MILE IN :48.80 FOR HASKELL – Trainer Brad Cox stated Friday that Gold Square’s $225,000 Matt Winn (Grade III) winner Cyberknife is likely headed to the $1 million Haskell Stakes (GI) on July 23 at Monmouth Park for his next start. The 3-year-old son of Gun Runner returned to the Churchill Downs work tab Saturday with an easy half-mile move in :48.80.

Cyberknife (outside) nipped Howling Time to win Churchill Downs’ Matt Winn (G3). Coady Photography

          “He’s a Grade I winner already and I think a race like the Haskell could help him increase his stallion value,” Cox said. “He gutted out a victory in the Matt Winn last time and showed a lot of determination to get to the wire from off the pace. It’ll be a tough race in the Haskell but we’re confident with him going up against Grade I-caliber horses.”

          Cyberknife is owned by New Jersey-resident Al Gold, who’s a retired construction manager and regularly attends races at Monmouth Park. Gold was on hand Kentucky Derby Day at Churchill Downs when Cyberknife finished an enigmatic 18th in the “Run for the Roses.”

          Cyberknife is likely to complete his major work toward the Haskell at Churchill Downs and ship to New Jersey the week of the race.

STEPHEN FOSTER DAY NEWS AND NOTES – Several top horses have been regularly training at Churchill Downs and tracks around the country for next Saturday’s Stephen Foster Day. Here are some updates:

          Marylou Whitney Stables’ Allaire DuPont Distaff (GIII) winner Super Quick completed her major work prior to the $350,000 Fleur de Lis (GII) with a half-mile move in :48.60 Saturday at Churchill Downs. She’ll be ridden in the Fleur de Lis by jockey Joe Talamo. …

          Flurry Racing Stables, Qatar Racing Limited and Whisper Hill Farm’s Shedaresthedevil will attempt to avenge her runner-up finish to Pauline’s Pearl in last month’s $750,000 La Troienne presented by Signify Health (GI) in the Fleur de Lis. She worked five furlongs in 1:01.40 Saturday at 7:30 a.m. with exercise rider Edvin Vargas in the saddle. She’ll be ridden in the Fleur de Lis by Florent Geroux. …

          Robert Zoellner’s Oklahoma-bred She’s All Wolfe, the winner of last month’s $200,000 Shawnee Stakes, is likely to work Sunday at Trackside Louisville for the Fleur de Lis. “The more I asked of her (in the Shawnee) the more she responded and ran faster,” jockey Francisco Arrieta said. “She really showed a lot of heart that day.” …

          Grandview Equine, Cheyenne Stable and LNJ Foxwoods’ $500,000 Alysheba presented by Sentient Jet (GII) winner Olympiad is likely to arrive at Churchill Downs early next week from Saratoga where he last worked five furlongs in 1:00.97 Tuesday morning over the training track for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott. …

          The stakes action at Churchill Downs will continue after Saturday’s Stephen Foster Day with a duo of stakes Sunday and a trio Monday. Part of Sunday’s program will be the first running of the $160,000 Maxfield Overnight Stakes where Patricia’s Hope and Mark Farrar’s improving 3-year-old Jimmy Creed colt Conagher is a possible contender. Trainer Mike Tomlinson reported on “At the Races with Steve Byk” that Conagher could run in the seven-furlong Maxfield or test two turns in the 1 1/16-mile $250,000 Iowa Derby (Listed) run at Prairie Meadows on Saturday, July 9. Conagher has not recorded a published workout since his romping 5 ¼-legnth allowance victory June 3 at Churchill Downs but has been regularly galloping. …

          Action from Saturday’s Stephen Foster Day program will be televised on NBC from 4-6 p.m. The Stephen Foster is a “Win and You’re In” for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) held Nov. 5 at Keeneland. The winner will have their entry fees paid for the Classic and receive a shipping stipend if they are located outside the state of Kentucky.

STAKES PROBABLES – Here are the probable entrants to all 11 stakes that will be held on closing week of the Spring Meet, according to Churchill Downs Assistant Racing Secretary and Stakes Coordinator Dan Bork:

·        $750,000 Stephen Foster (GII) on Saturday, July 2 at 1 1/8 miles for 4-year-olds and up, a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” Classic event: Americanrevolution (trainer Todd Pletcher); Last Samurai (D. Wayne Lukas); Mandaloun (Brad Cox); Olympiad (Bill Mott); Proxy (Mike Stidham); and Title Ready (Dallas Stewart). Possible: Caddo River (Brad Cox).

·        $350,000 Fleur de Lis (GII) on Saturday July 2 at 1 1/8 miles for fillies and mares 4-year-olds and up: Ava’s Grace (Robertino Diodoro); Pauline’s Pearl (Steve Asmussen); She’s All Wolfe (Donnie K. Von Hemel); Shedaresthedevil (Brad Cox); Super Quick (Norm Casse); and Will’s Secret (D. Wayne Lukas).

·        $350,000 Wise Dan (GII) on Saturday, July 2 at 1 1/16 miles on turf for 4-year-olds and up: Atone (Mike Maker); Cavalry Charge (Dallas Stewart); and Somelikeithotbrown (Mike Maker).

·        $200,000 American Derby (Listed) on Saturday, July 2 at 1 1/16 miles on turf for 3-year-olds: Grand Sonata (Todd Pletcher); Kitodan (Eric Forster); and Ready to Purrform (Brad Cox).

·        $200,000 Tepin (Listed) on Saturday, July 2 at one mile on turf for 3-year-old fillies: Beside Herself (Todd Pletcher); Distorted Secrets (Carl Deville); and Zawish (Helen Pitts-Blasi).

·        $160,000 Kelly’s Landing Overnight Stakes (Listed) on Saturday, July 2 at 6 ½ furlongs for 3-year-olds and up: Bango (Greg Foley); and Startdfromdabottom (John Ennis).

·        $160,000 Anchorage Overnight Stakes on Sunday, July 3 at one mile on turf for fillies and mares 4-year-olds and up: Hendy Woods (Mark Casse).

·        $160,000 Maxfield Overnight Stakes on Sunday, July 3 at seven furlongs for 3-year-olds: My Prankster (Todd Pletcher). Possible: Conagher (Mike Tomlinson).

·        $175,000 Bashford Manor (Listed) on Monday, July 4 at six furlongs for 2-year-olds: Andthewinneris (Wayne Catalano); Fit to Fly (Larry Rivelli); Mr. Gordy (John Hancock); and Simply Super (Mike Maker).

·        $175,000 Debutante (Listed) on Monday, July 4 at six furlongs for 2-year-old fillies: Crackalacking (Sarah Hamilton); Devious Dame (Norm Casse): Motown Mischief (Tim Hamm); and Summer Promise (D. Wayne Lukas).

·        $175,000 Hanshin presented by the JRA (Listed) on Monday, July 4 at one mile for 4-year-olds and up: Awesome Gerry (Saffie Joseph Jr.); Necker Island (Chris Hartman); and Runnin Ray (Joe Sharp). Possible: Candy Tycoon (Norm Casse); and Plainsman (Brad Cox).

Entries for Saturday’s card will be drawn Wednesday while Sunday and Monday’s cards will be drawn Thursday.

Turf racing for the first two carded stakes events will be conducted in Lane 2, 12 feet from the inside rail. The next two stakes events will be run on Lane 1. Churchill Downs has turf works scheduled for Sunday morning. The four weekend turf stakes will be the only races run over the turf course next week.

CHURCHILL DOWNS TO HOST JOCKEYS & JEANS STEPHEN FOSTER DAY – Churchill Downs will partner with Jockeys & Jeans for a public benefit toward the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund on July 2 as part of Stephen Foster Day.

          Jockeys & Jeans will host more than 25 retired jockeys for their event including Hall of Famers Braulio Baeza, Bill Boland, Don Brumfield, Steve Cauthen, Pat Day, Earlie Fires, Sandy Hawley, Julie Krone, Chris McCarron, Craig Perret, Laffit Pincay Jr., Edgar Prado, Jose Santos and Gary Stevens.

          Fans will be able to meet those riders and more with an autograph session in the Plaza from 3-4:15 p.m. There also will be a silent auction in the second floor of the Clubhouse beginning at 11:45 a.m. Admission gates will open at 11:30 a.m. and first post is 12:45 p.m.

          Guests can also purchase a ticket to the Jockeys & Jeans private event in the Triple Crown Room that includes a buffet lunch, autographed Jockeys & Jeans poster and a meet and greet with Hall of Fame jockeys and fallen riders. Tickets are $75 and can be purchased online at https://www.ticketmaster.com/event/16005B5CAD1637A6?did=jockey.

          Jockeys & Jeans was founded by a group of former jockeys who wanted to honor the courage of those who suffered catastrophic injuries on the racetrack. The event will host several riders who were permanently injured on the racetrack such as Gary Birzer, Stacy Burton, Jack Fires, Armando Rivera and Mike Straight.

          For more information about Jockeys & Jeans, visit www.jockeysandjeans.com.

Jennie Rees is a communications and advocacy specialist in the horse industry who spent 32 years covering horse racing for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal before taking a corporate buyout. In addition to handling communications for the Kentucky HBPA, Rees is Kentucky Downs’ publicity director, manages in-season racing publicity for Ellis Park and serves as a consultant to the National HBPA. Other projects include the Preakness Stakes, Indiana Grand’s Indiana Derby Week and work for various HBPA affiliates and horsemen’s associations.