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News and Notes

Put Your Breeders’ Cup selections to work and win a $600 entry to the Freeze-Out Tournament on Nov. 28.

Satellite Handicapping Contests
November 6 & 7, 2009: Santa Anita

The Contest
$20 Entry Fee. One contest each day

Select one horse in each Breeders’ Cup race.

All selections must be turned in before the first contest race.

Points awarded based on a mythical $20 across the board wager.

Maximum three (3) entries per person.

Winner receives a $600 entry into the Freeze-Out Handicapping Contest on November 28.

Look for Kevin Gorg’s Breeders’ Cup selections in the Minneapolis Star Tribune

NTRA Thoroughbred Notebook
News and notes from around the Thoroughbred racing world, compiled by NTRA Communications.

The undefeated 5-year-old mare Zenyatta drew post position four and was installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite for Saturday’s renewal of the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Cailf. Zenyatta will bid for her 14th career victory while facing 12 male rivals in the 1 ¼ miles test, including Kentucky Derby hero Mine That Bird, Belmont Stakes winner Summer Bird and European star Rip Van Winkle.
The 26th Breeders’ Cup World Championships, racing’s prestigious global showcase, consisting of 14 races with purses totaling $25.5 million, will be held during the Oak Tree Racing Association meeting on Friday, Nov. 6 and Saturday, Nov. 7. The Breeders’ Cup races will be televised live on ABC/ESPN and viewed in more than 130 countries.

A total of 149 horses were entered in the Breeders’ Cup races, including 30 from Europe, and 10 defending or former Breeders’ Cup champions, topped by Zenyatta, who sealed an Eclipse Award campaign here last year with her dramatic victory in the $2 million Ladies’ Classic.

Trained by John Shirreffs for owners Jerome and Ann Moss, Zenyatta posted the 13th victory of her perfect career winning the Lady’s Secret Stakes over the Santa Anita track on Oct. 10, equaling the modern day record at the top level set by Personal Ensign winning the 1988 Breeders’ Cup Distaff at Churchill Downs.

Ballymacoll Stud Farm’s 4-year-old Irish homebred Conduit bids for a repeat victory in the $3 million Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Turf for trainer Sir Michael Stoute in a field of eight drawn for the 1 ½ miles grass course event. His challengers include Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s English-bred filly Dar Re Mi and J. Paul Reddam’s 6-year-old Red Rocks, winner of the 2006 renewal of the Turf at Churchill Downs.

With Zenyatta opting for the Classic rather than defending her Ladies’ Classic crown, a field of eight fillies and mares was drawn for the 1 1/8 miles to climax the Friday program. Godolphin’s 5-year-old Chilean-bred Cocoa Beach, runner-up to Zenyatta in the race last year, Godolphin stablemate Music Note, and Donver Stable’s 3-year-old emerging star Careless Jewel invading from Canada are among the favorites.

The other former Breeders’ Cup Champions returning are Wertheimer et Frere’s French-trained 4-year-old filly Goldikova defending her 2008 victory in the $2 million TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile, Augustin Stable’s 5-year-old mare Forever Together bidding for a repeat score in the $2 million Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf, Juddmonte Farm’s 5-year-old mare Ventura in the $1 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, R. A. Pegum’s 5-year-old gelding Muhannak defending his title in the $500,000 Breeders’ Cup Marathon; Tarabilla Farms Inc.’s 5-year-old horse Desert Code seeking a repeat bid in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint; Godolphin Racing LLC’s Midshipman, winner of last year’s Juvenile, bids for the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile; and Karen Woods & Saud bin Khaled’s Maram, winner of the 2008 Juvenile Fillies Turf, runs in this year’s Filly & Mare Turf.

Emerging stars that will be strong favorites in their respective races will be Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s 2-year-old Lookin At Lucky in the $2 million Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and Zayat Stable’s 3-year-old Zensational in the $2 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Sprint, both trained by Bob Baffert.

The complete field for the Breeders’ Cup Classic, in post position order is: Mine That Bird (jockey: Calvin Borel, morning line odds: 12-1); Colonel John (Garrett Gomez, 12-1); Summer Bird (Kent Desormeaux, 9-2); Zenyatta (Mike Smith, 5-2); Twice Over (Tom Queally, 20-1); Richard’s Kid (Alex Solis, 12-1); Gio Ponti (Ramon Dominguez, 12-1); Einstein (Julien Leparoux, 12-1); Girolamo (Alan Garcia, 20-1); Rip Van Winkle (John Murtagh, 7-2); Regal Ransom, (Richard Migliore, 20-1); Quality Road (John Velazquez, 12-1); and Awesome Gem (David Flores, 30-1).

Post time for the Classic is slated for 5:45 p.m., central time.

Closed since August 4 due to devastating flooding in Louisville, the Kentucky Derby Museum this week announced plans for a massive renovation project. Construction crews have already begun dismantling flood-damaged exhibits and renovation efforts will continue over the next six months. The museum is scheduled to re-open on April 18, 2010. Some of the content within the exhibits will remain the same, but others will be updated to create a more interactive experience.

The overall footprint of the museum will not be expanded, but several walls inside will be altered, opening the facility and creating more square footage for exhibit space. Several new themes will be explored in the exhibits including celebrity attendance, the infield experience, fashion and a deeper look into the life of the horse from foal to Derby contender.
Insurance will cover approximately $1 million of the replacement costs of like-kind exhibits. Several grants and other fundraising efforts will be pursued to account for the remaining costs of renovation.