Horse Racing

Higher Power's career-best race came when he captured the 2019 Pacific Classic. He enters his defense of the Grade 1 race 0-for-his-last-5. (Image: Horsephotos.com)

Pacific Classic Brings Waves of Questions for its Three Favorites

As promised, Maximum Security is back to the fray for his first Pacific Classic. But after his rocky victory in last month’s San Diego Handicap, is the standout 4-year-old truly back? Two of Maximum Security’s chief West Coast rivals, Midcourt and Higher Power, will answer part of that equation. But […]

This scene of well-dressed fans soaking up the Kentucky Derby atmosphere will not happen this year. Churchill Downs officials announced the 146th Kentucky Derby will run without fans due to a coronavirus spike. (Image: Eclipse Sportswire)

Officials Scratch Fans from Suddenly Spectator-Free Kentucky Derby

Churchill Downs officials announced on Friday that the 146th Kentucky Derby will run without fans, doubling-back on its fervent desire to run America’s most iconic horse race with a semblance of Derby atmosphere. The decision came in the wake of a spike in COVID-19 cases in Kentucky. The state reported […]

Aqueduct's fall 2020 season offers only one Grade 1 race -- the Cigar Mile. but it provides candid views of some of the most promising 2-year-olds in the country. (Image: ZUMA Photography)

Aqueduct’s Fall Slate Light on Grade 1s, Heavy on Juvenile Prospects

The New York Racing Association published its Aqueduct fall meet on Thursday, announcing an 18-day meet featuring 29 stakes races worth $3.41 million in purse money. Even with a reduced schedule, a byproduct of the COVID-19 pandemic, Aqueduct’s stakes calendar offers bettors 11 graded stakes among those 29 stakes. Headlining […]

Fauci broke his maiden in his second start with this length victory at Keeneland in July. He faces two of his Wesley Ward stablemates in Friday's Skidmore Stakes at Saratoga. (Image: Keeneland/Coady Photography)

Ward Opens His Juvenile Playpen for the Skidmore Stakes

Unlike many of his contemporaries, trainer Wesley Ward has no problem turning his charges loose against each other. This explains why you’ll see three of his standout 2-year-olds tangle in the Skidmore Stakes at Saratoga Friday afternoon. The 5 ½-furlong turf sprint features Fauci, Golden Pal, and Sunny Isle Beach […]

The Belmont Park turf will provide the scene for some of Big Sandy's best fall races. (Image: NYRA/Coglianese Photo)

Fall Into Belmont Park’s Autumn Meet: 27 Days, 22 Graded Stakes

Even as the New York Racing Association cuts racing days in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, organization officials announced its 27-day Belmont Park fall meet. That schedule features 38 stakes races worth $5.58 million in purse money. NYRA officials announced Wednesday that they are cutting days from both the Belmont […]

The Saratoga racing season is a crucial financial engine for the New York Racing Association. One of the country's largest racing organizations lost $6.7 million in the second quarter and will cut races out of its Belmont and Aqueduct fall meets. (Image: Erica Miller/Daily Gazette)

NYRA Reduces Belmont, Aqueduct Meet Dates, Reports Financial Stability

Despite reducing race days for the Belmont Park fall meet and the Aqueduct winter meet, the New York Racing Association told New York state regulators it can financially operate under current conditions into the first half of 2021. The concerns about NYRA’s financial viability came because of the coronavirus pandemic, […]

Pneumatic and jockey Joe Bravo easily captured the final Kentucky Derby points race -- the Pegasus Stakes. But they announced Monday they'll skip the Derby for the Preakness Stakes a month later. (Image: Eclipse Sportswire)

Waiting Game Starts as Road to Kentucky Derby Ends

The Road to the Kentucky Derby is finally complete. Now, it’s just a matter of certain connections deciding if their horses will enter the Kentucky Derby starting gate. Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, the long and winding Derby trail claimed some standout horses, most notably Nadal, Charlatan, and Maxfield. The […]

Maryland Jockey Club President and GM Sal Sinatra said the claiming system in North American racing needs to disappear. (Image: Eric Stocklin)

Racing Exec Says Scrap Claiming System at Jockey Club Conference

Nuke the claiming system and start over with ratings. That’s the unequivocal message Sal Sinatra, the president and general manager of the Maryland Jockey Club, left virtual attendees at this year’s Jockey Club’s Round Table Conference on Matters Pertaining to Racing. Normally held in Saratoga Springs, NY, the annual conference […]

Colonial Downs has had a rough decade, exacerbated by a six-year closure. Now, the Virginia track canceled the rest of its 2020 season due to the coronavirus. (Image: Coady Photography)

Colonial Downs Cancels Remainder of 2020 Meet Due to COVID-19

Virginia’s Colonial Downs is the latest racing victim of COVID-19, announcing Friday evening that its canceled the remainder of its 2020 summer meet. The abrupt closure came three days after jockey Trevor McCarthy, who led the track’s jockey standings with 14 wins, tested positive for COVID-19. The Daily Racing Form […]

Six months after he broke his maiden with this neck victory at Oaklawn Park, Pneumatic charges into the final stop on the Kentucky Derby Trail as the 5/2 favorite. (Image: Coolmore Farm)

Pegasus Stakes Closes the Kentucky Derby Trail for Would-Be Entrants

This is it – the end of the trail. Monmouth Park’s Pegasus Stakes is your last stop for Kentucky Derby points before the “Closed” sign goes up. Monmouth Park’s finish line for Saturday’s Pegasus Stakes doubles as the Kentucky Derby Trail’s finish line. Get your points here – and there […]

Spice is Nice, seen her breaking her maiden at Aqueduct last year, has the pedigree to run 1 1/4 miles. But does she have the class to run with standouts such as Swiss Skydiver? (Image: Ryan Thompson/Coglianese Photo)

Alabama Stakes Takes Fillies on a Long Distance Runaround

Saturday’s Grade 1 Alabama Stakes at Saratoga gives you another glimpse of standout filly Swiss Skydiver, who figures to take most of the money and figures to go off at odds-on. It also gives you a rare glimpse of fillies doing something few American fillies and mares do – run […]

At 50/1, Giacomo (left) fended off 71/1 Closing Argument to win the 2005 Kentucky Derby. Lucky/savvy superfecta bettors cashed a $432,127 ticket. (Image: James Crisp/AP)

Now, Kentucky Derby Bettors Can Drop a Dime on Superfecta Wagers

One benefit of no long betting lines at Churchill Downs for this year’s Kentucky Derby is the new 10-cent minimum superfecta wager track officials instituted for this year’s Derby. Previous, the minimum superfecta wager – one requiring bettors to pick the first four horses in order – was $1. When […]

Jockey Chris Hayes and He Knows No Fear (9) nipped 7/5 favorite Agitare and Kevin Manning at the Leopardstown finish line. He Knows No Fear's stretch drive rewarded nervy bettors wagering on the 300/1 long shot. (Image: David Fitzgerald/SportsFile)

He Knows No Fear Shows Plenty of Nerve, Winning Irish Race at 300/1

Franklin D. Roosevelt famously said that “there’s nothing to fear but fear itself.” No one mentioned that to He Knows No Fear, who lived up to his name on Thursday afternoon, becoming the biggest-priced winner in British or Irish racing history when the 300/1 shot captured a maiden race at […]

You won't see scenes like these from the 2019 Kentucky Derby infield at this year's Derby. The infield is closed for the Sept. 5 race and seating is limited to 40% of capacity. (Image: Christopher Fryer/Louisville Business First)

Churchill Downs Limit Kentucky Derby Attendance to 40% of Capacity

In further response to COVID-19 health and safety concerns, Churchill Downs Racetrack officials released a 62-page health and safety operations plan on Wednesday that will limit Kentucky Derby attendance to fewer than 23,000 guests for the Sept. 5 race. That total is less than 14% of the record 170,513 fans […]

Kentucky Derby hopeful Max Player is on the move, from Linda Rice's New York barn to Steve Asmussen's Kentucky barn. (Image: Skip Dickstein)

Derby Hopeful Max Player Moved to Steve Asmussen’s Kentucky Barn

Three days after Max Player finished third to Tiz the Law in his second consecutive Grade 1 effort, owners for the horse switched trainers, moving him from Linda Rice to Steve Asmussen. The move came after Max Player finished third – 7 ½ lengths behind Tiz the Law at Saturday’s […]

Maximum Security (7) 
edged Midnight Bisou to win February's inaugural Saudi Cup. Only Midnight Bisou, however, received her purse winnings this week as Saudi officials investigate Maximum Security's former trainer. (Image: Edward Whitaker)

Saudi Cup Purse Money Released to All but Maximum Security

Nearly four months from its initial announcement to withhold Saudi Cup purse money, the Jockey Club of Saudi Arabia announced it will award prize money to the horses finishing second through 10th. That conspicuously excludes race winner Maximum Security. The JCSA said it will withhold prize money from Maximum Security […]

Tiz the Law made the Travers Stakes look as easy as his other three 2020 victories. Oddsmakers dropped his Kentucky Derby odds under 2/1 as a result. (Image: Stacey Heatherington/NYRA via AP)

Derby Odds Fall as Tiz the Law’s Stock Rises

It is a testament to Tiz the Law’s dominance over the rest of his 3-year-old contemporaries that his odds to win the Triple Crown (+250 at Circa Sports) are lower than any of his counterparts’ future odds on them winning the Kentucky Derby. That’s one takeaway from Tiz the Law’s […]

With the San Gabriels framing the track, horses go through their morning paces at Santa Anita Park. The Southern California track's fall season opens Sept. 19 -- one week earlier than usual. (Image: Jenna Schoenfeld/NY Times)

Santa Anita Park Falls into Autumn Meet with 24 Stakes Races

Santa Anita Park’s fall season begins a week earlier than usual, but features 24 stakes – 15 graded – over its 18-day autumn campaign. The Southern California track opens Sept. 19 and runs through Oct. 25. Usually, Santa Anita’s opening weekend loads up with graded stakes races. But with the […]

Jockey Brian Hernandez and Art Collector plan using the Ellis Park Derby as a tune-up for the Kentucky Derby. They are the 4/5 morning line favorite for the penultimate Kentucky Derby prep. (Image: Keeneland/Coady Photography)

Art Collector Unveiled as Easy Ellis Park Derby Favorite

Being a Kentucky Derby prep is uncharted waters for Ellis Park. And training a Kentucky Derby hopeful is definitely uncharted waters for Tom Drury. Those two storylines will collide Sunday at the Ellis Park Derby with all eyes on Drury’s odds-on favorite, Art Collector. In a normal year, the ungraded […]