TS Raises Bar For Kentucky Derby Betting

TwinSpires.com has announced a new Kentucky Derby Betting Championship that will debut next year on May 6-7, 2016 for the marquee race at Churchill Downs. The big prize is sure to lure many to the contest, with a $250,000 pot being put up for grabs. It’s certainly a bold, and exciting, move for the primary wagering outlet at Churchill Downs.

TwinSpires has crafted a bold Kentucky Derby betting contest
Do you want a shot at $250,000? TwinSpires just gave it to you.

Players will need to buy-in to the contest with a $20,000 entry fee. That fee is broken up in to two parts, with $5,000 going towards the enormous prize pool and the other $15,000 serving as the player’s wagering balance. Each player must wager at least a minimum of $1,200 on the Friday events and $1,800 during Saturday’s races. Win, place, show, exacta and trifecta bets is counted towards your action.

Not only will participants have a chance at winning the quarter-million dollar prize, they’ll also receive three entries in to the National Handicapping Championship and the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge. On top of that, you get to keep all of your tournament winnings regardless of the result of the contest.

TwinSpires has also opened registration for players with a deposit of $1,000. This reserves your spot for the Kentucky Derby Betting Championship and also enters you in to a side draw for a $24,000 prize, which breaks down in to $20,000 for the contest itself plus a $4,000 travel allowance. You can reserve your spot at by visiting the KentuckyDerbyBettingChampionship.com right now. The winner for the early bird contest will be selected January 2nd. What a great way to ring in the New Year.

The Kentucky Derby already draws the largest handle of any American Thoroughbred race. Churchill Downs Racetrack President, Kevin Flanery, was obviously ecstatic that his track was able to secure another way for players to enjoy the action on the first leg of the Triple Crown. “This opportunity is a result of our great partnership with TwinSpires.com, and we’re thrilled at the chance to host and entertain this group of top horseplayers at the home of America’s greatest race.”

 

Runhappy Gets Stevens for Malibu Stakes

With Edgar Prado shelved for the time being, Runhappy breezed with Gary Stevens at Santa Anita Park in preparation for the Malibu Stakes. The three-year old colt has racked up a fantastic 5-0-0 record in 6 races, which has included wins at Breeders’ Cup Sprint and King’s Bishop. He’ll go for a sixth race, and his first at Santa Anita Park, on December 26th for a late Christmas present.

Trainer Laura Wohlers was pleased with the results Stevens provided during the fast paced breeze. “He looked good, the track was playing a little slow and there’s a lot of moisture in the track. We’re just trying to get him ready for the distance.” The Malibu Stakes is a 7-furlong sprint. Runhappy was clocked at 1:25.40 during the breeze today.

There is major anticipation for the opening day of racing at Santa Anita, with the Malibu Stakes standing as the marquee event and expectations couldn’t be higher for Runhappy who has won $1,301,300 and two Grade-1 stakes races this year. However, he won’t know who he’ll be racing against until nominations are submitted by December 17th with entries being pulled on December 21st.

However, Runhappy gets the benefit of being ridden by Gary Stevens after losing Prado. Both are hall of famers. Prado suffered  an injury at Gulfstream over the weekend, and Runhappy’s connections were quick to take advantage of Gary Stevens’ availability. Stevens has won just over 5,000 races in North America and is one of the toughest jockeys on the planet. Prior to a knee replacement in 2014, Stevens competed with a completely torn ACL. This will be a sudden switch for Runhappy, who has been ridden by Prado for his last three races but he could not be in better hands.

One of those races was the King’s Bishop, Runhappy’s first GR1 stakes victory, which is significant because it is also 7-furlongs. His last two victories at the BC Sprint and the Phoenix were both 6-furlongs.

Stay tuned for more coverage on the upcoming Malibu Stakes on December 26th.

 

Hong Kong International Races Results

The Longines Hong Kong International Races concluded today with Japan coming out way ahead. Sha Tin Racecourse packed in 80,8011 race fans to enjoy the 10-race event.

Highland Reel won the Hong Kong Vase, edging out Flintshire, Dariyan and Ming Dynasty who rounded out the top four in that order. It was a brutal battle between Highland Reel and Flintshire down the stretch, but the Irish-bred horse from trainer Aiden O’Brien was able to outlast the competition. It was the first win at the Hong Kong International Races for O’Brien as Highland Reel stormed from behind in the final one-hundred metres to win by 1 1/12 lengths.

The Hong Kong Sprint belonged to Peniaphobia, another Irish product, who shot out of the 10th post and was able to fend off the favoured Gold-Fun by a half-length at the finish line. Last year’s winner, Aerovelocity, finished outside of the top four instead giving way to Not Listenin’tome and Dundonnell.

A pair of American horses competed in the sprint event at the Hong Kong International Races, and did not seem to handle the travel nor the lengthy season too well. Mongolian Saturday, who won the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, placed 5th while Green Mask stumbled to 8th.

One of the biggest wins at the Hong Kong International Races belonged to Maurice, a stud from Japan who won the Hong Kong Mile. The race was billed as a head-to-head challenge between Maurice and Able Friend, who was the heavy favourite at 1.7. But Able Friend disappointed the crowd by ending third, as Giant Treasure rode the rail to slip in to second place. Maurice was a 4/1 second-favourite. This was the first time in a decade that the winner of the mile did not hail from Hong Kong.

A Shin Hikari won the Hong Kong Cup in a shockingly fast time of 2:00.60 in the 2,000 metre with the biggest upset of the Hong Kong International Races. Listed at 38/1, A Shin Hikari beat out Nuova Record and Blazing Speed and put forth one of the most surprising efforts of the day. Designs on Rome was the listed favourite, but finished fourth.

The day began with Jolly Jolly winning the Silent Witness Handicap. Happilababy followed up with a victory in the Fantastic Light Handicap. Wintson’s Lad also won the JJ The Jet Plane Handicap (my favourite race name from the day). Fabulous One ended the day of action at the Hong Kong International Races with a victory at the Lord Kanaloa Handicap.

 

The Golden Gate Stakes Begin Dec. 26th

The Golden Gate Stakes will once again run over 96 days, beginning December 26th, 2015 and ending June 12th, 2016. This will include 12 stakes races worth a combined $1.025 million, highlighted by the El Camino Real Derby slated for February 20th, 2016. The $200,000 race is one of the prep races on The Road to the Kentucky Derby.

Serving as the major, regional stakes race in Northern California, the El Camino Real Derby is a 1 1/8th mile race on dirt. Metaboss won in 2015 with past winners also including Tabasco Cat, Sea Cadet and Casual Lies. You can watch Metaboss’s win at last year’s rendition below (video courtesy of TVG):

The Golden Gate Stakes is held at Golden Gate Fields in Berkley, California just outside of San Francisco. It is owned and operated by the Stonarch Group, who took ownership back in 2011 when its previous parent company, Magna Entertainment Corp, filed for bankruptcy. It’s a fantastic venue to enjoy some early season races over the winter and spring.

January 16th, the Berkley-based racetrack will run the California Derby as a warm-up race for the El Camino Real Derby. The Golden Gate Stakes also includes the San Francisco Mile on April 30th and the All American on May 30th. All three of these races offer $100,00 purses.

The California Oaks runs on February 6th as well, with a purse of $50,000.

One of the more popular events for the Golden Gate Stakes is known as the Turf Extravaganza, which takes place on May 1st with two races highlighting the day. These include the Silky Sullivan for 3-year old colts, and the Campanile for 3-year old fillies. Both races are run over one mile on the turf track, and offer $100,00 purses as well.

The Golden Gate Stakes will conclude with the Albany on June 11th, a 5-furlong sprint for 3yr+ horses.

Stay tuned to Preakness Stakes Wagering as we preview these races closer to their posting dates!

Private Zone Florida Bound For Rehab

After a very disappointing run at the 2015 Cigar Mile, Private Zone is headed to The Sanctuary in Florida for some much needed rehab. It’s been a gruelling year for the six-year old, and Rene Douglas wants her rested for what we can only assume will be another year of competition in 2016.

Is that the right move?

Private Zone winning the Churchill Downs
An impressive looking Private Zone winning the Churchill Downs

Private Zone was 3-2-1 in seven races this season, and ended her campaign by trailing 5th at the Cigar Mile. She won the Forego Handicap, a GR1 stakes race, while also capturing wins at the Churchill Down Stakes (GR2) and the Belmont Sprint Championship (G3). An early season, second place finish at the Gulfstream Park Handicap (GR2) was coupled with her disappointing second place finish at the Breeders’ Cup Spring, which is another GR1 race. Her other run at a grade one was at the Metropolitan Handicap where she showed at third.

Seven races is a lot for any horse, especially a six-year old gelding and Douglas admitted that the Cigar Mile may have been a mistake. “I blame myself, I don’t blame the jockey or the trainer. That’s got nothing to do with it,” Douglas noted. “The horse was tired after the Breeders’ Cup and only went in to the [Cigar Mile] with four or five days of galloping. You’re not going to win a race like that.”

Douglas has been known to give Private Zone about 90 days off in the winter, and the idea is that the attention the horse enjoys at The Sanctuary in Florida will rejuvenate her in time for the Dubai Golden Shaheen in late March. Private Zone has competed at this race one time in the past, placing 9th back in 2013.

By no means does that guarantee that Private Zone will be ready for the 2016 season. Right now, the intention is to give him the rest he has rightfully earned and asses from there. If her handlers do decide that it’s time to retire him by the conclusion of winter, Private Zone’s career will still be served well. The Good Friends Stable that owns her, and trainer Brian A. Lynch have enjoyed a career record of 7-7-3 in 24 races.

Private Zone has plenty of fans that are eager for a return in 2016, but that news will have to wait. The prize of Good Friends Stable will no doubt enjoy some much deserved, and needed, rest and relaxation as she snowbirds in Florida.

Mohaymen Is Your 2015 Remsen Stakes Winner

With an unbeaten record hanging in the balance, Mohaymen ran a perfect race to become the 2015 Remsen Stakes winner with relative ease. The GR2 race for two-year old geldings held a purse of $300,000 and was once again run at Aquaduct in New York as one of the main attractions of the last Super Saturday on the calendar.

The son of Tapit rode the rail at fourth around the final turn before forcing his way between Donegal Moon and Flexibility. Junior Alvarado pressed Mohaymen down the stretch, and nobody else on the track was a match. Mohaymen became the 2015 Remsen Stakes winner by a margin of 1 1/2 lengths.

MohaymenRemsen2015_3AC298
Mohaymen is now the KDFW leader at 14/1

This is a big accolade for Mohaymen, who will become eligible for the 2016 Triple Crown series. The product of trainer Kerian Mclaughlin is now the Kentucky Derby Futures Wager front runner at a price of 14/1. He has gained an edge over his soon-to-be rivalies, Airoforce (33/1) and Brody’s Cause (23/1).

The 2015 Remsen Stakes winner also collected 10 points on The Road To The Kentucky Derby 2016 prep race circuit. Flexibility took home 4 points in second, while Gift Box nabbed two points and Sail Ahoy earned a single point for their efforts as the show and check.

Flexibility has now placed behind Moyahmen in back-to-back races.

2015 Remsen Stakes Results
1. Mohaymen
2. Flexibility
3. Gift Box
4. Sail Ahoy
5. Donegal Moon
6. Ravenheart
7. Hunter O’Riley
8. Runaway King
9. Marengo Road

The expectations on Mohaymen are massive as he was purchased from Clearsky Farms for an enormous sum of $2.2 million last year. So far, Shadwell Stable’s investment has been solid with a double victory as the Nashua and Remsen Stakes winner. His next race is the Holy Bull Stakes (GR2) in January 30th, 2016 but that’s still a fair distance in the future so stay tuned.

Elsewhere during Super Saturday at the Aquaduct, Tonalist won the 2015 Cigar Mile, just ahead of stablemate Red Vine. Private Zone was unable to defend his 2014 win and ended fifth of of a field of six despite 6/5 odds.

Those that were able to back the 2015 Remsen Stakes winner were paid out $5.10, $3.30 and $250. Mohaymen is absolutely a horse worth tracking for the upcoming 2016 season and an early lean for those considering a KDFW.

Welcome To Preakness Stakes Wagering

This is Preakness Stakes Wagering, the best site for betting on the big race that serves as the second leg of the Triple Crown of American Thoroughbred Racing!

We offer the best betting lines, tips and previews of the marquee event and give our readers all the insider information they need to win big at the Preakness Stakes.

Held annually at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland, the Preakness Stakes is a 1 3/16 mile race on a dirt track for three-year old geldings. Run since 1873, the purse has increased from its initial $1,000 offering to an astounding $1.5 million in 2015.

The Preakness Stakes is fondly known as “The Race for the Black-Eyed Susans”.

preakness
The logo for the 140th Preaknes Stakes in 2015 with the race’s traditional color scheme of yellow, black and red.

The reigning champion is American Pharaoh, the living legend who captured the first ever Grand Slam of American Thoroughbred Racing. This included incredible victories at the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes along with a wild win at the Breeders’ Cup Classic to wrap up the winningest season of any horse in the history of the sport.

American Pharaoh was ridden by Victor Espinoza, who also rode 2014 winner California Chrome. Espinoza became just the fourth jockey to win in back-to-back races at the Preakness Stakes, and the most recent since Pat Day won three times in a row from 1994-1996.

The winningest jockey in Preakness Stakes history is Eddie Arcaro, who dominated the course over an incredible career. He posted wins at Pimlico’s marquee event in 1941, 1948, 1950, 1951, 1955 and 1957. With six wins, he resides comfortably ahead of Pay Day’s 5 total victories.

The fastest time recorded at the Preakness Stakes was by Secretariat in 1973 with a pace of 1:53:00. When American Pharaoh won in 2015, he did so with a time of 1:58:46 in adverse, muddy conditions.

American Pharaoh wins in 2015 with Victor Espinoza's arm raised high
American Pharaoh wins in 2015 with Victor Espinoza’s arm raised high

Surprisingly, Secretariat does not own the record or the largest margin of victory. That distinction belongs to Smarty Jones, who sprinted to a massive lead of 11 1/2 lengths in 2004.

The 141st Preakness Stakes will run on May 21st, 2016 and one again serve as the second leg of the Triple Crown.