Saturday, January 31, 2009

Capt. Candyman Can punches ticket!

Horse Racing Photos: EquiSport Photos/Z. Laskowski

From DRF & Equibase - "CAPT. CANDYMAN CAN showed speed, eased back off the leaders on the backstretch, angled four wide on the turn, rallied to gain the lead at the top of the stretch and was fully extended to prevail. HELLO BROADWAY away alertly, set the pace under pressure inside ROCKETING RETURNS, responded when headed by CAPT. CANDYMAN CAN at the top of the stretch but couldn't stay with that rival in the final eighth while clearly second best."
DRF story here...

Looks like a legitimate contender to me. He moves up 12 positions on my list, to #5 (Which is probably worth a little less than a Steve Haskins accolade :) .
What happened to Kimmel's horse, 'Break Water Edison'?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

'Pure Clan' back to Lakin from IEAH

Pure Clan at Churchill Downs. 11.24.2007
Horse Racing Photos: EquiSport Photos/Matt Wooley

Lakin reacquires Pure Clan from IEAH
Daily Racing Form, Mary Rampellini, HOT SPRINGS, Ark.
Lewis Lakin, breeder of Pure Clan, said Monday night that he has bought back a majority interest in the millionaire filly from IEAH Stable and Pegasus Holding Group in a private deal that closed over the weekend, making him the sole owner. Lakin originally sold majority interest in Pure Clan to IEAH last February.
Rest of the story here...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Benny the Bull...back on Track!

Benny The Bull, with Edgar Prado up, wins the Sunshine Million Sprint at Gulfstream Park. 1.26.2008 (Horse Racing Photos - EquiSport Photos/Matt Wooley)

Daily Racing Form - By Mike Welsch, MIAMI BEACH, Fla.
Michael Iavarone said Benny the Bull is on the farm in Ocala but will likely rejoin trainer Rick Dutrow Jr.'s stable in April with the hopes of returning to the races in July.
"We're targeting a late-summer campaign, with our main goals the Breeders' Cup Sprint and hopefully to get him back to Dubai again for the Golden Shaheen the following spring," said Iavarone.
Full story here...

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Square Eddie, Old Fashioned...Showdown in the Dirt!

Square Eddie, photo EquiSport Photos/JB Faulconer

Old Fashioned, photo EquiSport Photos/Dianne Boothe

From the Daily Racing Form - ARCADIA, Calif. - Square Eddie, second in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile in October and the San Rafael Stakes at Santa Anita last Saturday, will make his first start on a conventional dirt track in the Grade 3, $250,000 Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park on Feb. 16.
Full article here -

Should be a great preview for the rest of the trail. Maybe the beginning of a long term rivalry between Square Eddie and Old Fashioned?
Cheers, MW

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Pamplemousse?..#10 this week in "The Word", Top 25 Derby Horses w/connectio

The Pamplemousse makes a debut at #10 this week after a nice win in the San Rafael.
Square Eddie not the best horse? Does he need dirt?
Chocolate Candy wins the Cal Derby. Against who?
Patena continues to train well after a 2nd in the Lecomte.
Taqarub wins 3rd in a row with 8+ win in minor Stakes.
Stardom Bound in the Derby? Count on it with IEAH.

"The Word" - Derby 2009 Contenders 1.20.2009
Horse Sire Trainer Owner Jockey Next
1 Old Fashioned Unbridled's Song Larry Jones Rick Porter Ramon Dominguez 2/16 OP Southwest S.
2 Beethoven Sky Mesa John Ward John Oxley Calvin Borel 1/31 GP Holy Bull S.
3 PioneeroftheNile Empire Maker Bob Baffert Zayat Stables Garrett Gomez 2/7 SA Robt. Lewis
4 Square Eddie Smart Strike Doug O'Neill Paul Reddam Rafael Bejarano
5 Big Drama Montbrook David Fawkes Harold Queen Eibar Coa 1/31 GP Holy Bull S.
6 Stardom Bound Tapit Rick Dutrow IEAH Mike Smith 2/7 SA in Las Virgenes
7 Midshipman Unbridled's Song Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing Garrett Gomez in Dubai
8 Vineyard Haven Lido Palace Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing Edgar Prado in Dubai
9 Notonthesamepage Catienus Wesley Ward Ken & Sarah Ramsey Elvis Trujillo 2/28 GP Fountain of Youth
10 The Pamplemousse Kafwain Julio Canani Bienstock & Winner Stable, A. Solis II Alex Solis at Santa Anita
11 Friesan Fire AP Indy Larry Jones Vinery & Fox Hill Gabriel Saez 2/7 FG Risen Star
12 Haynesfield Speightstown Steve Asmussen Harvey Weinstein Ramon Dominguez
13 I Want Revenge Stephen Got Even Jeff Mullins Lanzman Racing Joe Talamo in Dubai
14 Chocolate Candy Candy Ride Jerry Hollendorfer Jenny Craig Rafael Bejarano 2/14 SA El Camino Real
15 Donativum (GB) Cadeaux Genereux John H. M. Gosden Princess Haya of Jordan Frankie Dettori
16 Patena Seeking the Gold Josie John Sikura, D. Dilalla Robby Albarado
17 Giant Oak Giant's Causeway Chris Block Virginia Tarra Trust E. Razo at Fairgrounds
18 Capt. Candyman Can Candy Ride Ian Wilkes Jos. Rauch, David Zell Julien Leparoux at Palm Meadows
19 Coronet of a Baron Pure Prize Eoin Harty Darley Alan Garcia
20 Break Water Edison Lemon Drop Kid John Kimmel Eli Gindi Alan Garcia at Payson Park
21 West Side Bernie Bernstein Kelly Breen Lori & Goerge Hall Elvis Trujillo 1/31 GP Holy Bull S.
22 Well Positioned Awesome Again Pat Reynolds Paul Pompa Javier Castellano at Gulfstream Park
23 Charitable Man Lemon Drop Kid Kiaran McLaughlin W. K. Warren Jr Alan Garcia at Palm Meadows, recovering
24 Taqarub Aldebaran Kiaran McLaughlin Shadwell Alan Garcia
25 Munnings Speightstown Todd Pletcher Tabor, Magnier, Smith John Velazquez

On the "Also Ran" List
Flat Out
Danger to Society
Brother Keith
Stimulus Plan
Free Country

Cheers, MW

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

R.I.P. 'Indyanne'...

Indyanne (Indian Charlie), Robby Albarado up, wins the Thoroughbred Club of America S. (G3) at Keeneland 10.04.2008mw ( Horse Racing Photos by EquiSport Photos )

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

R.I.P. 'Go Between'...

Go Between, Miguel Mena up, red cap, wins the Fayette Stakes at Keeneland Race Course. 10.27.2007mw (Horse Racing Photo: EquiSport Photos)

Monday, January 12, 2009

$4.4 million bid for Azeri rejected

Photo: EquiSport Photos

By Glenye Cain Oakford (DRF)
Horse of the Year and three-time champion Azeri went through the ring as scheduled Monday at Keeneland's January all-ages sale, but the final $4.4 million bid was not enough to convince seller Michael Paulson to part with her, even on a day that saw 40- to 50-percent declines across the board.
Azeri was in foal to 2004 Horse of the Year Ghostzapper, and fetal sexing shows that she is carrying a filly, according to Paulson. Paulson consigned Azeri through John Sikura's Hill 'n' Dale sales agency.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Ky. Derby Trail...Square Eddie tops "The Word" 1.11.2008

Photo: EquiSport Photos

The Word...Kentucky Derby Trail 1.11.2008
Friesan Fire jumped into the mix with a nice win in the Lecomte. Nice to see Larry Jones with a couple of strong contenders.
Just a quick summary of my prognostications and observations for the week. Feel free to add your 2 cents!
1 Square Eddie
2 Old Fashioned
3 Beethoven
4 Midshipman
5 Vineyard Haven
6 Big Drama
7 PioneeroftheNile
8 Haynesfield
9 Notonthesamepage
10 Friesan Fire
11 I Want Revenge
12 Donativum (GB)
13 Giant Oak
14 Capt. Candyman Can
15 Coronet of a Baron
16 Break Water Edison
17 Chocolate Candy
18 West Side Bernie
19 Well Positioned
20 Charitable Man

Ky. Oaks Trail 1.11.2008
1 Stardom Bound
2 Maram
3 Laragh
4 Four Gifts
5 Rachel Alexandra
6 C.S. Silk
7 Dream Empress
8 Just Jenda

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Ecplise Award for Photography...the Honorable Mentions

Thanks! to all who sent Congrats, and to those who have asked to see the "Honorable Mentions". Here's Big Brown winning the Kentucky Derby. This was published in the Daily Racing Form May 6,2008 and was my first Eclipse nom. I feel very honored to be recognized. It's nice to have a bit of credibility for one's work.
Big Brown (Boundary), Kent Desormeaux up, wins the 134th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. 5.03.2008mw (Horse Racing Photo by EquiSport Photos / Matt Wooley)

Honorable mention in the Photography category also went to Alexander Barkoff, whose photo of a morning sunrise on the Fair Grounds backstretch was published in the New Orleans Times Picayune on November 9.
Fog shrouds the Fair Grounds Race Course Saturday, November 1, 2008 as horses work in preparation for the 2008-09 meeting which began November 14, 2008. (Posted with permission of photographer, Alexander Barkoff)

Congratulations again to Matt Goins, this years' winner, for his other "Bookend". He has spent much of his life in the trade as a photojournalist and is one of the hardest working photographers I know. This second Eclipse Award must be, I'm sure, very gratifying. One needs to consistently know how to "be in the right place at the right time" to get the consistently great shot. Matt knows how to do it. Way to go!

Matt Goins' picture, and caption, was posted here on Dec. 30th and appears further down this column.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Ky. Derby Trail 1.04.2009 "The Word"

Old Fashioned (Unbridled's Song), Ramon Dominguez up, wins the Remson S. (G2) at Aqueduct 11.29.2008db ( Horse Racing Photos by EquiSport Photos/Dianne Boothe )

Here's the rundown as I see it, in order. Purely speculative and unscientific. Neither 'Pioneerof the Nile' nor 'Haynesfield' really impressed this time out, so their position is relatively unchanged.
The Lecomte is this weekend, and could bring some new contenders into the mix. Square Eddie runs back in the San Rafael S. Jan 17 at Santa Anita.
I'm starting to get a few pictures on the website...

Kentucky Derby Trail 1.04.2009
1 Old Fashioned
2 Square Eddie
3 Beethoven
4 Midshipman
5 Vineyard Haven
6 Donativum (GB)
7 Big Drama
8 PioneeroftheNile
9 Giant Oak
10 Haynesfield
11 Coronet of a Baron
12 Notonthesamepage
13 I Want Revenge
14 Capt. Candyman Can
15 West Side Bernie
16 Break Water Edison
17 Chocolate Candy
18 Well Positioned
19 Charitable Man
20 Munnings
21 Cribnote

Kentucky Oaks Trail 1.04.2009
1 Stardom Bound
2 Maram
3 Laragh
4 Four Gifts
5 Rachel Alexandra
6 C.S. Silk
7 Dream Empress

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Painting with Light

Life Magazine Classic Photo of Pablo Picasso. The picture was shot by photographer Gjon Mili in Vallauris, France in 1949. The photo shows us Picasso in a different but interesting and original setting.

My daughter, Sarah, painting with a small flashlight. This fun little idea can have some very interesting real world applications. Of course, you have to learn to write your name backwards!

When you think of "Painting with Light" you might think of spreading a light beam ONTO an otherwise dark subject. But, if you let the actual light do the story telling, the results can create a new perspective.

This is a simple technique using the "Rear or Second-Curtain Sync" setting on your flash or as a custom function in your camera if using an older flash. Second-Curtain Sync forces the flash to fire at the end of the exposure rather than at the beginning. In a dark environment, use a tripod and select a long Shutter Priority, or "Bulb", exposure to create a dramatic effect.

Imagine the many subjects that could be enhanced with this technique. Perhaps a Stallion in a semi-darkened arena with a few light trails right before the flash, a bride on the dance floor showing some movement right before the image is frozen, a stage production.

Use your imagination, and your camera settings, to put your vision in a new perspective.
Share your interesting "Light Techniques" here.
MW 1/04/2008

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Haynesfield gets the job done in Count Fleet

Haynesfield (Speightstown), Ramon Dominguez up, wins the Count Fleet S. (L) at Aqueduct 1.03.2009sk (Horse Racing Photos by EquiSport Photos/Sue Kawczynski)

(The Handicapper's Edge) Saturday's $68,460 Count Fleet S. was expected to be the coming-out party for Turtle Bird Stable's HAYNESFIELD (Speightstown), who was hammered down to 1-2 favoritism in his first start outside of New York-bred company. Although it was not as stylish as his 5 1/4-length victory in the Damon Runyon S. last time out, the Steve Asmussen colt duly prevailed after a brief tussle in the Aqueduct stretch, and stamped himself as a major player on the New York road to the Kentucky Derby (G1).

Haynesfield showed signs of inexperience and attempted to lug in, but Ramon Dominguez kept him straight, and he gradually drew off by 3 1/2 lengths. The chestnut stopped the teletimer in 1:44 3/5 for one mile and 70 yards on the fast inner track, rewarding his backers with mutuels of $3, $2.50 and $2.10.

"Obviously, it was a very different trip than last time," Dominguez said. "I didn't want to push him. He relaxed nicely. It was just a matter of getting in the clear. He tried to lug in -- he did the same thing last time. I was aware that we were following quick fractions. When it was time to pick it up, he did."

"The race was very nice; I mean, he won," assistant trainer Toby Sheets said. "It wasn't visually as impressive as last time and the competition was a little bit different, but he won".