Keeneland, Ky Downs owners team up for harness track, HHR in eastern Kentucky

Keeneland press release (Photo: Kentucky Downs co-owner Ron Winchell) LEXINGTON, KY (Sept. 21, 2020) – Keeneland and the majority owners of Kentucky Downs announced today their filing of an application for a racing license and proposed construction of a state-of-the-art racing facility and related track extension in Kentucky to be located in Corbin and Williamsburg, respectively. The proposed facilities will […] Continue Reading

James “Pops” Schmitt, 1935-2020 – an appreciation

(Photo: Pops Schmitt and Dana Hancock at the John Hancock stable’s 2018 Christmas Party at Riverside Downs)          James E. Schmitt, known by everyone as Pops, became as much a fixture in trainer John Hancock’s barn as soybeans in the Ellis Park infield.          When Pops died Aug. 19 at age 85 at his […] Continue Reading

No fans at Kentucky Derby (or entire Derby Week)

Churchill Downs Inc. press release LOUISVILLE, KY., (August 21, 2020) – Churchill Downs Incorporated (“CDI”) (Nasdaq: CHDN) announced today its decision to run the 146th Kentucky Derby on September 5, 2020 without fans. CDI issued the following statement: The Kentucky Derby is a time-honored American tradition which has always been about bringing people together. However, the health and safety of […] Continue Reading

Drury assistant Jose Garcia on ride of life with Art Collector

Assistant trainers are one of the most labor-intensive positions in horse racing. But Jose Garcia, who has worked for trainer Tommy Drury for 22 years, has assumed an additional role as groom for Keeneland’s Toyota Blue Grass winner Art Collector, now one of the favorites for the Kentucky Derby. “He’s an amazing horse,” said Garcia, who on Friday said his […] Continue Reading

Maker sweeps Keeneland’s Elkhorn, Transylvania

Keeneland’s closing-day stakes recaps (Photo above: Tyler Gaffalione guides Zulu Alpha to Elkhorn victory. Coady Photography)  Click here for a replay of the TVG Elkhorn and interviews with jockey Tyler Gaffalione and trainer Mike Maker Michael Hui’s even-money favorite Zulu Alpha surged past longshot pacesetter Postulation in deep stretch by  three-quarters of a length to win Sunday afternoon’s 35th running […] Continue Reading

Drury wins first graded stakes as Art Collector takes G2 Blue Grass

Keeneland’s Blue Grass recap (Coady Photography photos) Click here for a replay of the race and interviews with jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. and trainer Tom Drury Jr. Click here for a replay of the post-race Zoom interviews with owner-breeder Bruce Lunsford and with Drury. Bruce Lunsford’s homebred Art Collector roared past the filly Swiss Skydiver at the eighth pole and […] Continue Reading

War of Will nips Parlor in Maker’s Mark Mile; Four Graces rolls

Keeneland’s recap of today’s stakes action (Photo above: War of Will, in pink silks, nailed Parlor, in white blinkers on the hedge, in the final stride to win the Grade 1 Maker’s Mark Mile) Click here for a video recap of the third day of Keeneland’s five-day Summer Meet. War of Will Nips Parlor to Win Grade 1 Maker’s Mark […] Continue Reading

Shared Sense gives Cox, Geroux sweep of IN Derby, Oaks

Indiana Grand stakes recap (Coady Photography photos) SHELBYVILLE, Ind. (July 8, 2020) —  Shared Sense and jockey Florent Geroux made it a clean sweep for trainer Brad Cox in the 26th running of the Grade 3 $300,000 Indiana Derby Wednesday, July 8. Geroux also connected with Shedaresthedevil in the Grade 3 $200,000 Indiana Oaks to give Cox the two biggest […] Continue Reading

Tom’s d’Etat, Midnight Bisou head to Saratoga

Churchill Downs press release (Coady Photography photo above of Tom’s d’Etat’s Stephen Foster victory): LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Sunday, June 28, 2020) – G M B Racing’s brilliant $500,000 Stephen Foster (Grade II) winner Tom’s d’Etat along with Bloom Racing, Madaket Stables and Allen Racing’s ultra-classy $200,000 Fleur de Lis (GII) hero Midnight Bisou both exited Saturday’s races in good shape and will head […] Continue Reading

Midnight Bisou headlines Asmussen’s 15 horses in last 3 days of Churchill meet

Today’s Churchill Downs barn notes by Kevin Kerstein LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Friday, June 26, 2020) – Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen is poised to close the 2020 Churchill Downs Spring Meet on a charge with 15 horses entered in the final three days of racing including 2019 Champion Older Dirt Female Midnight Bisou (3-5 on the morning line) in the […] Continue Reading