Tag: Arkansas Derby

Oaklawn Park's 2021-22 stakes schedule consists of a record 36 stakes. Included is a revamping of its Kentucky Derby trail stops. (Image: Coady Photography)

Oaklawn Park Boosts Arkansas Derby Purse, Remakes Derby Prep Trail

Oaklawn Park just shifted the landscape for the 2022 Kentucky Derby trail, boosting the purse for the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby to $1.25 million and moving the race up a week, to April 2, 2022. That moves the Arkansas Derby from its traditional spot as the last major Derby prep […]

In his brief, five-race career, Charlatan was one of the most imposing colts to enter a starting gate. He retired Thursday after winning four of his five career races. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Charlatan Retired to Stud After Meteoric and Stellar Career

Standout colt Charlatan, who won every race but his last one, retired from racing Thursday, heading for stud duty at Hill ‘n’ Dale Farm in Paris, KY. That comes a little over a month after the 4-year-old went on the shelf after a Churchill Downs workout. That last workout came […]

Super Stock seeks a Texas Derby title to go with his Arkansas Derby victory last month. The inaugural Texas Derby is Memorial Day at Lone Star Park. (Image: Coady Photography)

Super Stock Chases Return to Form in Inaugural Texas Derby

We last saw Super Stock finishing a distant 16th in the Kentucky Derby. We’ll next see him back not in the final Triple Crown jewel – the Belmont Stakes – but in the inaugural Texas Derby. The 3-year-old Arkansas Derby winner is one of 10 expected sophomores in the $300,000 […]

Charlatan illustrated his breakaway speed in last December's Grade 1 Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita Park. He came out of a bullet workout with a setback that shelves the 4-year-old colt indefinitely. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Charlatan Goes Back on the Shelf With Undisclosed Setback

Charlatan, the dynamic Bob Baffert trainee and multiple Grade 1 winner, suffered an undisclosed setback during a recent workout and will be sidelined indefinitely. The Daily Racing Form reported the news Thursday. They quoted a text from Sol Kumin, one of Charlatan’s owners in the multi-group consortium that owns the […]

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert won his appeal of a 15-day suspension for two of his mainstay trainees testing positive for lidocaine in 2020. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Arkansas Race Officials Rescind Charlatan’s, Gamine’s Drug DQs

In horse racing’s version of splitting the foal in half, the Arkansas Racing Commission upheld three stewards’ rulings from the 2020 Arkansas Derby card, but rescinded drug-related disqualifications for two Bob Baffert horses — Charlatan and Gamine — running on that card. The six-vote, unanimous decision reinstates Charlatan’s first division […]

Jockey Umberto Rispoli had reason to celebrate his 4 1/2-length Santa Anita Derby victory. But Rispoli won't ride the undefeated Candy Ride colt in the Kentucky Derby -- Joel Rosario will. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Derby Musical Jockeys: Rosario Replaces Rispoli on Rock Your World

In a case that’s flipping what-have-you-done-for-me-lately on its ear, jockey Joel Rosario will replace Umberto Rispoli aboard Rock Your World for next week’s Kentucky Derby. Rock Your World’s trainer, John Sadler, discussed the decision on the Thoroughbred Los Angeles radio show on Sunday morning. He took full responsibility for the […]

Concert Tour and sizzling rider Joel Rosario come into the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby unbeaten in three races, including this 4 3/4-length victory in last month's Rebel Stakes. (Image: Coady Photography)

Get Your Concert Tour Tickets for This Arkansas Derby

For reasons ranging from handicapping to running style to history, the Arkansas Derby is the perfect last stop on the Kentucky Derby Trail. You could dial up a better finishing prep race. But you’d second-guess yourself mid-thought and wind up back at Oaklawn Park. Yes, Saturday’s 1 1/8-mile Arkansas Derby […]

After winning January's Sham Stakes, Life Is Good attempts to follow Authentic's 2020 path to the Kentucky Derby. Like his Bob Baffert-trained forebear did last year, Life Is Good will run next at the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Baffert’s Next Move: One Derby Prospect Stays Home, One Hits Road

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert began plotting his next moves for his deep bench of Kentucky Derby prospects, with the first move sending top prospect Life Is Good to the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita Park. Baffert’s second move sends Freedom Fighter across the country for […]

Gamine, seen here winning the Test Stakes last summer, forfeited her third-place finish in the Kentucky Oaks after her second positive drug test. (Image: Coglianese Photo/HYRA)

Champion Sprinter Gamine Disqualified from Kentucky Oaks

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission formally disqualified Gamine from the 2020 Kentucky Oaks after the Bob Baffert charge tested positive for betamethasone. Along with that, the commission fined Baffert $1,500. As a result of the Jan. 30 ruling, posted on the KHRC website, Gamine forfeits the $120,000 she earned for […]

Front-running Wells Bayou won the Louisiana Derby last year. He returns to Fair Grounds Saturday for the Louisiana Stakes, his first race in eight months. (Image: Amanda Hodges Weir/Hodges Photography)

Ex-Derby Hopeful Wells Bayou Finds Another Trail — the Comeback

Wells Bayou put himself on last year’s Kentucky Derby Trail with an electric, front-running style comprising equal parts promise and peril. Now, the reigning Louisiana Derby winner puts himself on the comeback trail in Saturday’s Grade 3 Louisiana Stakes. The $125,000 Louisiana is one of six stakes on Saturday’s Fair […]

Jockey Martin Garcia and Charlatan are no longer 2020 Arkansas Derby winners. Oaklawn Park stewards stripped the Bob Baffert horse and his filly stablemate, Gamine of their May 2 victories for excessive amounts of lidocaine. (Image: Wesley Hitt/Getty)

Baffert Suspended 15 Days, Horses Disqualified for Positive Drug Tests

Oaklawn Park stewards suspended Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert for 15 days and stripped two of his prize horses of victories for their positive drug tests for excessive amounts of a banned substance. The decisions came down Wednesday, two days after a hearing addressing the excessive amounts of lidocaine […]

Seen here with 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify, trainer Bob Baffert plans fighting the positive drug tests of Charlatan and Gamine. (Image: Julio Cortez/Associated Press)

Second Samples Come Back Positive for Two of Baffert’s Star Horses

More than a month after two of Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert’s star horses failed post-race drug tests at Oaklawn Park, the split samples of both tests both came back positive. The “B” sample tests confirmed the initial findings that showed undefeated Charlatan and Gamine both tested positive for […]

Nadal won February's San Vicente Stakes for one of his four career victories. The cold retired Thursday after breaking a bone in his leg during a workout. (Image: Benoit Photography)

Broken Bone Forces Kentucky Derby Favorite Nadal Into Retirement

Illustrating the fragile nature of today’s Thoroughbred horses, Kentucky Derby favorite Nadal broke a bone in his left front leg during a Thursday morning workout. His owner, George Bolton, said Nadal has been immediately retired. One of Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert’s standout 3-year-olds, Nadal worked a half-mile at […]

In winning the tougher second division of the Arkansas Derby, Nadal remained unbeaten. The Bob Baffert-trained cold also took over the Kentucky Derby points lead. (Image: Coady Photography)

What Did We Learn About Major Kentucky Derby Hopefuls?

The Arkansas Derby is behind us and a work-in-progress Kentucky Derby Trail lies in front of us. With tracks around the country beginning to open again in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, and Churchill Downs officials still mapping out prep races, it’s a good time to see where the […]

Bob Baffert's unbeaten Nadal is the 5/2 favorite in the tougher of the two Arkansas Derby divisions. (Image: AP)

Deep End of Arkansas Derby Pool is Smack Dab in Second Division

With the Arkansas Derby’s split divisions, here runs the talent. The Arkansas Derby’s second division features your graded-stakes winners, your low-odds Kentucky Derby futures picks and the horses owning Derby prep victories. Here is the Arkansas Derby’s varsity division – the second division. This is where you find your Louisiana […]

Charlatan, seen here winning a March allowance by 10 1/4 lengths at Santa Anita, enters his first stakes race Saturday. He's in the Arkansas Derby's first division. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Split Decisions: Arkansas Derby Breaks Into Two Divisions

Given the intense interest in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby amid the coronavirus pandemic, the move was as expected as it was unprecedented. And Oaklawn Park made it official Sunday, splitting Saturday’s final scheduled Kentucky Derby prep into two divisions. Both 11-horse divisions will race for a $500,000 purse, and […]

Storm the Court was a 45/1 shot to win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last November. He'll face shorter odds, but tougher competition in the Arkansas Derby. (Image: Eclipse Photography)

Storm the Court Ready to Conquer New Turf in Arkansas Derby

Juvenile champion Storm the Court will storm a non-California track for the first time at next week’s $750,000 Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, trainer Peter Eurton announced this week. The 1 1/8-mile race at Oaklawn Park remains the only official Kentucky Derby prep currently on the schedule, which explains its popularity. […]